IMAGIO consortium receives Innovative Health Initiative EUR 24 million grant to improve cancer treatments

  • The Innovative Health Initiative has awarded a EUR 24 million grant to the IMAGIO consortium of clinical partners coordinated by Philips, with additional resources and funding by industry partners
  • The consortium will carry out research into improving clinical outcomes through less invasive treatments for lung cancer, liver cancer and soft tissue sarcomas

The Innovative Health Initiative (IHI) announced yesterday that the IMAGIO consortium* of clinical partners has been awarded a EUR 24 million grant, complemented with additional resources and funding by industry partners,** to carry out research into less invasive cancer treatments. Consisting of approximately 30 partners including hospitals, academic institutes, smaller and larger companies, as well as healthcare professional and patient organizations. The consortium will use the funding to develop interventional oncology innovations focused on lung cancer, liver cancer and soft tissue sarcomas.

In Europe about 2.7 million people are diagnosed with cancer each year [1]. While significant advances have been made in treatment, many approaches continue to have negative side effects, impacting healthy tissues as well as targeting the cancer itself. The aim of interventional oncology is the very precise treatment of tumors with small instruments supported by imaging modalities such as MRI, ultrasound, PET and CT. Treatment is carried out through targeted surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy or high intensity focused ultrasound. In addition to reducing damage to healthy tissues, expanding the use of minimally or non- invasive procedures also reduces the need for major surgery.

"By bringing together leading university medical centers, academic partners, patient and healthcare professionals organizations, as well as smaller and larger companies in the medical technology and pharmaceutical industry, the IMAGIO consortium has the potential to make a significant impact on improving cancer treatment,” said Bert van Meurs, Chief Business Leader Image Guided Therapy and Chief Business Leader Precision Diagnosis (ad interim) at Royal Philips. “We’ve chosen to focus on liver and lung cancer – two leading causes of death – alongside soft tissue sarcomas, a highly aggressive form of cancer that affects a significant proportion of young individuals, causing a lot of human suffering. By advancing established treatments and developing new approaches, we aim to improve clinical outcomes.”

Specific projects taking place in the consortium include:

  • Collaboration between Radboud University Medical Center, Philips and Janssen Pharmaceutica to further expand diagnosis and minimally invasive treatment of lung cancer using Philips' Azurion image-guided therapy platform. Read more.
  • Collaboration between Philips, Leiden and Maastricht University Medical Centers to improve the diagnosis and treatment of liver cancer using CT, ultrasound, precision marking and ablation technology.
  • Collaboration between University Medical Center Utrecht, TU Delft and Philips to improve the treatment of liver cancer through radioembolization (a type of radiation therapy) supported by hybrid imaging modalities. Read more.
  • Collaboration between University Hospital of Cologne, Profound Medical and Philips to treat soft tissue sarcomas with MR-guided high intensity focused ultrasound (MR-HIFU) in combination with Thermosome’s lead drug candidate THE001, which is a thermosensitive liposomal formulation of doxorubicin developed in soft tissue sarcoma.
  • Collaboration between VU, Radboudumc, ETH and Flash Pathology for instant diagnosis of lung biopsies and study of tumor microenvironment.
  • Collaboration between Eberhard Karls University Tübingen, Radboudumc, Pfizer, and ImaginAb Inc. to guide novel immune checkpoint inhibitor therapies in early-stage lung cancer by molecular imaging.

[1] European Commission, Europe's Beating Cancer Plan - (page 4)

About the IMAGIO consortium

*The IMAGIO consortium - IMaging and Advanced Guidance for workflow optimization in Interventional Oncology - includes the following partners Philips, UMC Utrecht, LUMC, University Hospital of Cologne, TU Delft, Radboudumc, Luxium Solutions, Flash Pathology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Profound Medical, Gremse-IT, Thermosome, MUMC+, Nederlandse Leverpatiënten Vereniging, Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale Dei Tumori, Eberhards Karls UniversityTübingen, European Cancer Patient Coalition, Stichting Longkanker Nederland, ImaginAb Inc., Pfizer Inc., Universiteit Twente, Nanovi, Turku University Hospital, SIOP Europe, Janssen Pharmaceutica; and associated partners Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich and The Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
** The IMAGIO industry partners are members of COCIR, EFPIA, EuropaBio and MedTech Europe

This project is supported by the Innovative Health Initiative Joint Undertaking (JU) under grant agreement No 101112053. The JU receives support from the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme and life science industries represented by COCIR, EFPIA, EuropaBio, MedTech Europe and Vaccines Europe.


IMAGIO is funded by the European Union, the private members, and those contributing partners of the IHI JU. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the aforementioned parties. Neither of the aforementioned parties can be held responsible for them.

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