Published: 06-09-2022 13:03 | Updated: 09-09-2022 09:48

KI-researcher awarded ERC PoC grant for non-invasive treatment of inflammatory diseases

Adam Williamson at Karolinska Institutet has received a European Research Council Proof of Concept (ERC PoC) 2022 grant, which is aimed at researchers who already have funding from the ERC and want to further develop the innovative potential of their discoveries.

Adam Williamson at the Department of Medicine, Solna.
Adam Williamson at the Department of Medicine, Solna. Photo: Private

Excessive inflammation causes the development of inflammatory diseases, such as Rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's Disease, inflammatory bowel disease and even cardiovascular disease – the most common cause of death in the world. Using “bioelectronic medicine” Adam Williamson, researcher at the Department of Medicine, Solna, Karolinska Institutet, now aims to investigate how electrical impulses can stimulate specific nerves in order to treat inflammatory diseases. Adam Williamson and his team will specifically look at the vagus nerve, which plays a key role in the regulation of key pro-inflammatory cytokines, pro-resolving mediators and in controlling inflammation.

Targeting the vagus nerve usually requires neurosurgical implantation, a procedure that is normally associated with several risks. In this project, Adam Williamson’s team will implement their non-invasive Temporal Interference technology for the first time, using electrodes on the skin. The technology delivers radiofrequencies enabling precise stimulation of the vagus nerve and other peripheral nerves without the need for surgical implantation.