Published: 05-05-2023 13:18 | Updated: 05-05-2023 13:19

Magnus Ingelman-Sundberg awarded ERC Proof of Concept Grant

Professor Magnus Ingelman-Sundberg has been awarded an ERC Proof of Concept Grant, which is aimed at researchers who have previously been funded by the European Research Council and now want to explore the innovation potential of their previous project. The grant will be used to further develop a hepatic model for liver disease and identify potential new drugs and drug targets.

Magnus Ingelman-Sundberg awarded ERC Proof of Concept Grant 2023. Photo: Johannes Frandsén

The grant amounts to EUR 150,000 for a period of 1,5 years and was announced by the European Research Council (ERC) on May 5. The aim is to enable ERC-funded ideas to progress from frontier research towards innovation through exploration of the commercial or societal potential of the findings.

Magnus Ingelman-Sundberg is professor of molecular toxicology at the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology. His project titled “SPHERO-NASH” will further develop a new “in vivo-like in vitro” hepatic model for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), a type of fatty liver disease characterized by inflammation and damage to liver cells.

Around 10 million people live with NASH in the EU alone and the numbers are expected to rise, partly due to increasing levels of obesity and type 2 diabetes. It is the leading cause of liver transplantation and there is no approved drug for the disease.

“With this funding we will be able to further develop our hepatic model for NASH in which the formation and breakdown of liver fibrosis can be monitored,” Magnus Ingelman-Sundberg says. “We will use the model to identify putative drug targets involved in the regulation of liver fibrosis and find new chemical entities that can reverse the NASH phenotype for further commercialisation.”

The project will be done in collaboration with HepaPredict AB, a private company co-founded by Magnus Ingelman-Sundberg and Professor Volker Lauschke, with support from KI Innovations AB.

Interested in applying for an ERC Proof of Concept Grant?

The ERC is currently taking applications for the next round of ERC Proof of Concept Grants, with a deadline on September 21. All Principal Investigators in one of the ERC frontier research main grants (Starting, Consolidator, Advanced or Synergy) are eligible to participate.