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A pioneering European research project aims to lead to new diagnostic tests to assess patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and identify those most at risk for developing severe inflammation and liver scarring. Researchers from the Oxford Centre for Clinical Magnetic Resonance Research will play a key role in evaluating a series of biomarkers for NAFLD.

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Examples of MRI scans, processed with LiverMultiScan™, from patients with mild NAFLD (left) and significant NAFLD (right). Image courtesy of Perspectum.

Liver Investigation: Testing Marker Utility in Steatohepatitis (LITMUS) funded by the European Innovative Medicines Initiative 2 Joint Undertaking, brings together clinicians and scientists from prominent academic centres across Europe with companies from the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA). Their common goals are developing, validating and qualifying better biomarkers for testing NAFLD.

The €34 million project is co-ordinated by Newcastle University, working closely with the lead EFPIA partner, Pfizer Ltd. LITMUS will include 47 international research partners based at leading international universities and some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies.

Find out more (Radcliffe Department of Medicine website)