News story

Improving patient diagnosis and treatment: apply for funding

Businesses can apply for a share of up to £5 million to develop new technologies in the field of precision medicine.

Ophthalmology operation room with equipment via Presslab at Shutterstock

There is up to £5 million available to improve how we identify and treat diseases.

Innovate UK has up to £5 million to invest in new technologies that will help doctors to make early and accurate diagnosis of disease and that will lead to better treatments.

More accurate identification and treatment

Disease processes and treatments can vary highly from person to person. Only between 30% and 70% of patients are thought to respond positively to any drug.

Precision medicine - also known as stratified medicine or personalised medicine - seeks to improve this through more accurate identification of disease and of the right treatment to pursue. It combines knowledge of clinical biomarkers with advances in diagnosis and data analysis.

The aim is to ensure patients receive an accurate diagnosis and get the best treatment for their personal circumstances.

Supporting our ageing society with earlier diagnosis and precision medicine is part of the government’s modern Industrial Strategy. Find out more about how we are tackling this challenge through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

What we are looking for

This competition is for both early-stage feasibility studies and for collaborative research and development. Projects may combine different research categories if needed.

Feasibility studies

Projects could conduct feasibility studies into:

  • initial technical activities
  • the value proposition of a concept
  • understanding the technical, operational, clinical and regulatory requirements of a technology and the challenges of getting it adopted by medical professionals
  • determining relevant regulatory and health technology assessments
  • analysing progress and developing a clear development plan for a technology

Collaborative research and development

We will support collaborative research and development under one of the following themes:

  • rapid and accurate diagnosis of commonly misdiagnosed ailments to help pick cost-effective remedies already on the market
  • mental health and precision psychiatry
  • paediatric and maternal-foetal medicine
  • inflammatory diseases including psoriasis, respiratory, autoimmune, Crohn’s and transplant rejection

Competition information

  • the competition opens on 14 May 2018, and the deadline for applications is at midday on 11 July 2018
  • a briefing event will be held on 31 May 2018
  • for feasibility projects, these:
    • must be led by a business working alone or with other businesses or research organisations
    • have project costs of up to £100,000 and to last up to 12 months
  • for collaborative research and development projects, these:
    • can be led by a business or a research and technology organisation and must include another organisation such as a healthcare provider, business or research organisation
    • have project costs of up to £2 million and to last up to 24 months
  • businesses could attract up to 70% of their project costs
Published 10 May 2018