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European Researchers Invited to Submit Study Proposals for Bristol-Myers Squibb's Partnering for Cure™ Virology Research Programme

PARIS, April 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

Partnering for Cure is Bristol-Myers Squibb's flagship, Pan-European scientific initiative supporting breakthrough research and facilitating greater collaboration and knowledge-sharing with the virology community 

In advance of this year's International Liver CongressTM 2014 in London, England, Bristol-Myers Squibb invites European researchers to submit innovative research ideas that aim to cure chronic virological diseases. As part of Bristol-Myers Squibb's ongoing commitment in virology, these projects provide an opportunity for researchers, particularly junior faculty and young investigators, to accelerate novel solutions that could lead to cures in HIV, hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV).

This latest round of research applications will be accepted from 1 May to 15 July 2014 and aspiring scientists are encouraged to submit their ideas at http://www.bms.com/israpplications. Priority will be given to research proposals in the area of translational science with a clear relevance for the clinical development of a cure in viral hepatitis or HIV infection.

Partnering for Cure is led by the Partnering for CureFaculty, an expert panel of clinical and research experts from across Europe and focuses on three pillars - education, scientific exchange and scientific research. The Faculty will award up to four recipients in a blinded evaluation after applications close. The four research applicants will share between them just over €300,000 in support from Bristol-Myers Squibb.

"This year, we were proud to announce our first class of Partnering for Cureresearch programme recipients in January," said Professor Jürgen Rockstroh, Partnering for Cure Faculty Chair. "Now we're looking for even more proposals to expand our clinical network and continuing the fight against chronic viral diseases through the 2014 Partnering for Cure research programme."  

Matthieu Perreau, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV) Service Immunologie et Allergie, Switzerland, was one of the four Partnering for Cure research programme recipients last year, awarded for his research, Identification of the memory CD4 T-cell population(s) harbouring replication competent HIV-1 within lymphoid tissues.

"This grant has provided me with the opportunity to pursue my passion and make an impact in the virology community," remarks Perreau. "It is an honour to be part of this exciting initiative, and I look forward to working with my research colleagues to find a cure."

"Bristol-Myers Squibb has a longstanding vision of continuing to transform the treatment of viral diseases and fulfilling serious unmet medical needs of patients," said George Hanna, MD, vice president, HIV Development, Bristol-Myers Squibb. "We look forward to this year's applications and supporting the upcoming generation of researchers and scientists who are dedicated to improving treatments and delivering true advances in patient care."

The projects that will receive support from Bristol-Myers Squibb will be announced on World AIDS Day - 1 December 2014.

About Partnering for Cure 

Partnering for Cure is a European medical education programme developed as part of Bristol-Myers Squibb's ongoing commitment to virology research, education and transforming clinical outcomes for patients with chronic viral diseases. The programme focuses on recent and ongoing cure research in HIV, HBV and HCV.

The objectives of the programme are to:

  • Provide medical education to physicians interested in virology cure research
  • Provide support to researchers active in virology cure research
  • Provide a forum for physicians and researchers to discuss advances in virology cure

The Partnering for Cure initiative reinforces Bristol-Myers Squibb's commitment in virology, which is rooted in the company's legacy in virology and ongoing research in HIV and viral hepatitis. Chronic viral infections make a substantial contribution to the burden of chronic diseases and premature mortality worldwide. In December 2012, the Global Burden of Disease Study reported 1,465,000 deaths caused by HIV/AIDS and 1,445,000 deaths caused by viral hepatitis in 2010.[i] Infections with hepatitis B and C viruses also cause an estimated 57 percent of cases of liver cirrhosis and 78 percent of cases of primary liver cancer annually.[ii] Whilst important advances have been made over the last decade significant unmet needs and the opportunity for cure remains, particularly in HIV.

Bristol-Myers Squibb's Commitment to Virology 

For over 20 years, Bristol-Myers Squibb has worked collaboratively with the virology community to help meet the needs of patients living with HIV, HBV and HCV - by providing and developing medicines such as Zerit®, Videx®, Sustiva®, Atripla[®*], Reyataz®, Baraclude®, supporting clinical research on new innovative compounds, supporting disease education efforts, and improving access to medicines in the developing world.

Bristol-Myers Squibb supports a number of scientific and educational programs within the virology community around the world that encompass disease education, disease awareness and sharing of best practices. In addition to Partnering for Cure these include SHE® (Strong, HIV positive, Empowered Women/Strong, HIV positive Women Educational Programme), a comprehensive and innovative programme for women living with HIV and their healthcare providers, PATH B® (Patients and professionals acting together for hepatitis B), a joint initiative between hepatitis patient groups and hepatologists to provide comprehensive information and support for patients with chronic hepatitis B.

Additionally, Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation's philanthropic and educational programmes, such as Secure the Future® and Delivering Hope® aim to support people living with HIV in Africa and with viral hepatitis in Asia, through numerous private-public partnerships and community based projects.

VIRUK14NP01991-01

Prepared April 2014

* Atripla® is a trademark of Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Gilead Sciences, Inc.

i. Global and regional mortality from 235 causes of death for 20 age groups in 1990 and 2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010, The Lancet, Volume 380, No9859, Dec 15, 2012 pp2095-2128

ii. WHO and WHA, Global Policy Report on the Prevention and Control of Viral Hepatitis, 2013, http://global-report.worldhepatitisalliance.org/en/home.html


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