“QSPainRelief: Effective combinational treatment of chronic pain in individual patients by an innovative quantitative systems pharmacology pain relief approach” aims to identify new drug combinations to solve a crucial problem since about 20% of Europeans suffer from chronic pain. Jesús Giraldo, researcher at the Institute of Neurosciences and the Department of Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Preventive Medicine and Public Health, is participating on behalf of the UAB.
Suffering from chronic pain is both physically and emotionally debilitating. In addition, people affected suffer from the stigma of having a disease that is not readily obvious on the outside. About 20% of Europeans suffer from chronic pain, and the prevalence of chronic pain is higher in women. 60% of the patients do not experience proper pain relief upon treatment or suffer from confounding adverse effects. In contrast, so called combinational therapies act beneficially on the central nervous system and may lead to an improved and healthier balance of therapeutic benefits versus adverse effects.
The “QSPainRelief: Effective combinational treatment of chronic pain in individual patients by an innovative quantitative systems pharmacology pain relief approach” project addresses the problem of chronic pain by identifying new drug combinations that are expected to increase analgesic efficacy while reducing side effects and improve the quality of life of patients. To do this, quantitative systems pharmacology and computational modeling will be used. The best combinations will be validated in animal models and clinical studies.
The project has also other objectives, such as to deepen the scientific understanding of the underlying physiological mechanisms of the pathophysiology of chronic pain; to better understand the influence of individual differences -age, sex, gender, genetic predisposition, etc. – and to improve communication with scientific, medical and social organizations in order to reduce the stigmatization suffered by patients.
The QSPainRelief project, led by the Leiden University, will receive more than € 6 million in funding for 5 years through the H2020 program. The project is a collaboration between 9 research institutions from 6 countries, including the UAB, with professor Jesús Giraldo leading one of the working groups.