What has the ATTRACT seed funding enabled you to do so far?
SMILE ATTRACT funding enabled us to set-up an interdisciplinary and international teamwork equipped with some innovative laboratory tools with the ambitious aim to develop a biosensing platform for the early diagnosis of oral cancer from saliva. We are now working hard to collect results in order to demonstrate that our idea can radically change current approach to this disease in a non-invasive manner.
What challenges have you faced so far?
The ATTRACT timeline is really tight and this pushes people working to be always motivated to maximise research strength. This one-year project allows research centres and companies to align their needs, such as time-to-market and fast demonstration of the great benefits diagnostic devices can offer. Lump-sum funding offers the possibility to organise and manage resources easily and with high strategic planning.
Where does your ATTRACT journey go from here?
Our basic idea for the early screening of oral cancer through the detection of non-blood biomarkers can be in principle applied to other diseases, imaging an increasing compliance for patients and a step forward in large scale early cancer detection.
Sum up in two sentences the advantages of the ATTRACT Programme over other research funding schemes.
One-year funded projects contribute to the fast and clear knowledge transfer from the state of-the-art research to the industrial concept. The ATTRACT Programme allows researchers to feel as part of a big scientific community which interacts to share knowledge and contributes to overcoming social challenges, ranging from environmental to clinical issues.