The LifeTime Coordination and Support Action (CSA) is organised into ten highly integrated work packages (WPs). There are four “horizontal” WPs focusing on science and technology. Three of them (Single-cell Multi-omics and Imaging; Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning; Experimental Disease Models) will map the technology and applications landscape to produce the recommendations for developing the LifeTime Technology Platform and Science & Technology (S&T) Roadmap, while the fourth, the LifeTime Launchpad will define the mechanism for and select the disease(s) that will be studied by the initiative.
The remaining five “vertical” cross-cutting WPs (Governance and Structure; Industry and Innovation; Communication Ethical, Legal and Societal Issues; Education and Training) are all highly relevant to each of the horizontal ones. The consolidating WPX will bring together the WPs outputs to ensure the coordination and linking of the different components of the final project blueprint and in particular plan how to translate the LifeTime technologies into applications.
Work package leader:
Geneviève Almouzni, Institut Curie, Paris, France
Nikolaus Rajewsky, MDC – Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine, Berlin, Germany
This work package deals with the overall project coordination.WP1 will establish and implement the LifeTime CSA project administration and management procedures, to maximize the effectiveness of project activities (on time and on budget) and ensure the delivery of project results through scientific and administrative coordination. In addition, WP1 provides transparency for consortium partners, associate partners and the EC through proper project documentation and reporting and deliver transparent and effective internal communication, including with the LifeTime advisory boards. WP1 organises and support/deliver project management, advisory boards and project meetings, develop and implement a risk management plan to ensure project objectives are achieved, and coordinate and deliver the external communication activities for different target groups.
Task 1.1 Establish and implement the project administration.
Task 1.2 Draft an internal communication plan ensuring transparent and timely dissemination of information to the consortium and associate partners.
Task 1.3 Plan, organise and deliver all project management, partner and advisory board meetings and prepare follow-up documentation and reporting as well as ensure execution of Steering Board decisions.
Task 1.4 Develop and implement a management contingency plan.
Task 1.5 Establish an external communication strategy tailored to target groups.
Task 1.6 Deliver, organise and manage external communications activities according to the communication plan.
Task 1.7 Develop the project´s data management plan (DMP).
Work package leader:
- Geneviève Almouzni, Institut Curie, Paris, France
- Nikolaus Rajewsky, MDC – Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine, Berlin, Germany
The overall objective of WP2 is the development of an effective scientific leadership and governance model as well as the organisational structure of the large scale research initiative LifeTime, including its infrastructure, funding and evaluation mechanisms for the project’s progress and impact.
This structure will be based on a transparent decision-making process for effective scientific leadership and professional management, with clearly defined stakeholder roles, avoiding unwarranted complexity but ensuring both stability and flexibility. WP2 will also define a mechanism of implementation including an open and transparent budget allocation mechanism; perform in-depth exploration of funding opportunities with national, international and private funding organisations, and define an appropriate evaluation system to monitor/assess the effectiveness and efficiency of the project as well as its impact.
- Task 2.1 Survey existing governance and organisation models and map funding instruments.
- Task 2.2 Develop LifeTime organisational structure including planning the LifeTime Cell Centres programme.
- Task 2.3 Develop the project “business plan”: costs and revenues scheme.
- Task 2.4 Develop LifeTime governance structure.
- Task 2.5 Identify and create Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to assess the project and its different programs.
Work package leader:
- Giacomo Cavalli, IGH – Institute of Human Genetics, CNRS, Montpellier, France
- Amos Tanay, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel
The objective of WP3 is to identify single-cell multi-omics and advanced imaging technology areas that will form part of the LifeTime Technology Platform and specify how they will be developed, integrated and scaled for applications. WP3 will focus on three main areas: a) Single-cell multi-omics technologies (dissociated cells, 1D), b) integrating high throughput microscopy approaches with single-cell omics technologies for spatial analysis of tissues (3D), c) longitudinal multi-omics for temporal profiling of tissues and clinical samples, including lineage tracing (4D). This will be achieved by first establishing the current state-of-the-art for each of these areas and identify the challenges/ opportunities for developing the LifeTime technology platform. The WP will make strategic decisions on which technologies to integrate and further develop to fulfil LifeTime objectives, establish a plan and timeline including key performance indicators (KPIs) for the development, integration and scaling of the selected technologies into the S&T Roadmap, in collaboration with WP4, 5 and 6, and involve the wider scientific community including industrial partners in the development of the technology platform and ensure access to the technologies.
- Task 3.1. Engage the community to map single-cell and advanced imaging technologies.
- Task 3.2. 1D Determine the single-cell multi-omics technologies and the steps necessary for scalable deployment in LifeTime.
- Task 3.3. 3D Determine novel microscopy techniques to be used in LifeTime, their interface and integration with single-cell omics technologies and application to clinical samples and disease models.
- Task 3.4. 4D Determine the technological developments required for longitudinal analysis of clinical samples and plan their establishment.
- Task 3.5. Define detailed scenarios for developing effective medical machine learning with LifeTime technologies.
- Task 3.6. Continuous engagement with the scientific community and stakeholders during the S&T Roadmap phase.
Work package leader:
- John Marioni, EMBL EBI – European Molecular Biology Laboratory – European Bioinformatics Institute, Hinxton, UK
- Marc Marti-Renom, CRG – Center for Genomic Regulation, Barcelona, Spain
- Helen Parkinson, EMBL EBI – European Molecular Biology Laboratory – European Bioinformatics Institute, Hinxton, UK
The objective of WP4 is to identify the innovative computational models/tools required for the LifeTime Technology Platform in four main areas: a) adaptive experimental design strategies that will enable efficient and effective data generation, while maximising the synergy between new and existing data, b) novel methods of data integration, analysis, visualisation and benchmarking, c) models for large-scale data sharing and governance as well as data management informed by international engagement, d) processes and tools for integration of health records with molecular data and analysis. Each of these four areas will be addressed by establishing the current state-of-the art of adaptive experimental design strategies, data integration, and integration of molecular data into electronic health records as well as integrative genomics and imaging. Another specific objective is to define and describe the types of data to be generated and the data management plan, and promote data benchmarking, sharing and exploitation together with WP3 and 5. WP4 will make strategic decisions on which computational methods/data infrastructures need to be integrated and further developed to fulfil LifeTime objectives and establish a plan and timeline for the development, integration and benchmarking of these technologies in collaboration with WP3, 5 and 6. WP4 will also establish how to involve the wider scientific community including industrial partners in the development of the technology platform and ensure access to the technologies.
- Task 4.1 Assessing the state-of-the-art with the community and build working groups around specific S&T challenges.
- Task 4.2 Determine adaptive experimental design strategies.
- Task 4.3 Determine novel methods of data integration, analysis, visualisation and benchmarking.
- Task 4.4 Determine models for large-scale data sharing and management.
- Task 4.5 Determine processes and tools for integration of health records and genetic information with molecular data.
- Task 4.6 Continuous engagement with the scientific community and stakeholders during the S&T Roadmap phase.
Work package leader:
- Jürgen Knoblich, IMBA – Institute of Molecular Biotechnology, Vienna, Austria
- Jean-Christophe Marine, CME – Center for Human Genetics KU-Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
- Giuseppe Testa, University of Milan and IEO – European Institute of Oncology, Milano, Italy
The overall objective of WP5 is to identify the required technological innovations in experimental disease models, including human organoids and complementary models, to achieve LifeTime objectives. WP5 focuses on three areas a) in vitro patient-derived human organoid models, b) integrating patient-derived tissues into in vivo models, c) developing and applying tools for the perturbation of disease states. The objectives for each of these areas are to establish the current state-of-the-art in disease models for the LifeTime translational pipeline, make strategic decisions on which models need to be integrated and further developed for the LifeTime Technology Platform, establish a plan and timeline for the development, integration and scaling of these models to achieve the LifeTime objectives for the S&T Roadmap, in close cooperation with WP4, 5, 6, and establish how to involve the wider scientific community including industrial partners in the development of new models and in ensuring access to existing ones.
- Task 5.1. Organise mapping sessions on disease modelling as part of the opening LifeTime conference.
- Task 5.2. Define the required technology developments in organoid modelling.
- Task 5.3. Determine the technology developments required for in vivo modelling and establish a plan and timeline.
- Task 5.4. Specify requirements for perturbation tool/method development and application in organoids and in vivo models.
- Task 5.5. Prepare for ethics committee approvals and explore modes to exchange models and materials with the LifeTime community
- Task 5.6. Continual engagement with the scientific community and stakeholders during the S&T Roadmap phase.
Work package leader:
- Peter Lichter, DKFZ – German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg, Germany
- Mihai Netea, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, The Netherlands
In WP6, the diseases to be investigated and monitored using the LifeTime Technology Platform will be selected using a dedicated evaluation mechanism called Launchpad, involving a multidisciplinary team of clinicians, researchers, technology experts, and industry partners. WP6 will define the process used to identify the disease(s), whose onset, progression and treatment, have the greatest potential to be impacted by LifeTime technologies, including their disease detection and interception. This mechanism will be used to select the disease(s) that will be the focus of LifeTime. Furthermore, WP6 will devise a process for the initiative to scout and identify new opportunities as and when they arise to fit into the LifeTime portfolio.
- Task 6.1 Define the criteria and the process for the selection of diseases that will be the focus of LifeTime.
- Task 6.2 Selection of diseases to be studied by LifeTime.
- Task 6.3 Define a mechanism for the continuous monitoring of technological and clinical developments to identify new candidate diseases to be studied by LifeTime.
Work package leader:
- Jan Ellenberg, EMBL – The European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Heidelberg, Germany
- Susan Gasser, FMI – Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Basel, Switzerland
- Joachim Schultze, LIMES Institute, University of Bonn & DZNE – German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, Bonn, Germany
The objective of WP7 is to identify, engage and integrate the most appropriate industrial and translational partners from the private and public sectors including start-ups, SMEs and large international companies for active participation within the LifeTime. With these stakeholders, WP7 will define clear and efficient paths toward the development of new products and services, and their adoption into daily use in medicine, healthcare and the life sciences. The specific objectives are to define the industrial strategy for LifeTime, develop the innovation framework for LifeTime and build and activate a network of prospective industrial partners and engage clinical and regulatory organisations to ensure alignment of translational research with LifeTime application objectives. Other specific objective include the engagement of funding organisations to jointly explore how the industry strategy and innovation framework can be embedded into EU and national funding programmes, and ensure effective alignment and agile response of LifeTime capabilities to the needs of the different stakeholders.
- Task 7.1 Map LifeTime innovation ecosystem and prepare specifications for a market and impact study.
- Task 7.2 Develop the LifeTime industrial strategy.
- Task 7.3 Establish the innovation framework for the initiative
- Task 7.4 Define a concept for industry involvement in the LifeTime governance.
- Task 7.5 Define KPIs and their evaluation criteria for the involvement of the private sector in LifeTime and the project innovation.
Work package leader:
- Leila Perie, Institut Curie, Paris, France
- Stephan Preibisch, MDC – Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine, Berlin, Germany
- Wolf Reik, The Babraham Institute, Cambridge, UK
The overall objective of WP8 is to develop a robust, audience-led strategic framework for effective communication, dissemination and engagement spanning the duration of LifeTime and ensuring lasting impacts far beyond its conclusion. At the heart of the strategy will be themes of Open Science (OS) and alignment with Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI). Our agile methodology will be responsive and constantly evolving enabling transparency, seamless integration and multi-directional information flow throughout the LifeTime community and stakeholders. There will be a commitment to clear and effective internal communication as well as high quality external messaging. We will encourage participation and contribution from political, public and commercial audiences across Europe and beyond. Our innovative communications approach will leverage the expertise available within the consortium to adopt new channels and media, placing LifeTime at the cutting-edge of communications – paralleling our research. We are committed to a dissemination and publication strategy incorporating Open Science principles and will actively seek to ensure knowledge generated through LifeTime is freely accessible to the wider scientific community and also both accessible and comprehensible to the public.
- Task 8.1. Design a communication strategy tailored to identify relevant stakeholders and target groups.
- Task 8.2. Assess the needs for and plan an adaptable and engaging website.
- Task 8.3. Develop a publishing and dissemination strategy grounded in Open Science principles.
- Task 8.4. Knowledge mapping.
- Task 8.5. Explore the concerns, fears and ideas of patients and citizens feeding into citizen and patient engagement projects.
- Task 8.6. Establish a crisis communication plan.
Work package leader:
- Annelien Bredenoord, UMC – University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands
- Maria-Helena Torres-Padilla, Institute of Epigenetics & Stem Cells, HMGU – Helmholtz Center Munich, Munich, Germany
The overall objective of WP9 is to identify the potential ethical, legal and societal issues raised by the development of LifeTime technologies and research on selected diseases following the ethical guidelines and principles required by EU and international legislation, in particular the GDPR and by the national governments of the countries in which the participants operate. WP9 will develop a mechanism/programme for the continuous monitoring of output from the initiative to identify such issues and develop strategies to address them. It will propose a mechanism for implementing ethical, legal and societal issues (ELSI) in the project’s governance model.
- Task 9.1 Identify ethical and societal issues arising from the LifeTime initiative and establish task forces for each area
- Task 9.2 Devise a strategy to address the identified ethical and societal issues.
- Task 9.3 Develop an ethics management mechanism to continuously monitor, identify and resolve issues during LifeTime.
- Task 9.4 Explore the legal and regulatory aspects of LifeTime.
- Task 9.5 Develop societal & public engagement activities.
Work package leader:
- Marek Figlerowicz, IBCH – Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poznan, Poland
- Dimitris Thanos, BRFAA – Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens, Greece
The objectives of WP10 is to develop the framework for the LifeTime Academy, the comprehensive training programme encompassing novel interdisciplinary training concepts as well as exploiting synergies with existing initiatives across Europe. It will be a major driver for the dissemination of the disruptive technologies, novel scientific findings and new medical approaches developed by the initiative. Areas such as technology transfer, ethics, research integrity, sex and gender in research will supplement the core programme and schemes providing valuable basic knowledge in a range of disciplines from natural and formal to social sciences to will help foster interdisciplinary exchange and collaboration. This inclusive approach will ensure that both the entire LifeTime workforce (researchers, clinicians, technical operators, managers of technology platforms, administrators, etc.) as well as the wider community have the skills and knowledge to successfully implement the LifeTime goals. The LifeTime Academy will be a crucial instrument for transferring and raising scientific excellence, with a special focus on the EU-13 countries. Educational events aimed at industry partners, patients and the general public will complement the agenda.
- Task 10.1. Create stakeholder committees and survey community.
- Task 10.2. Map existing training programs relevant to LifeTime.
- Task 10.3. Design education strategies and novel interventions and integrate with the existing programs.
- Task 10.4. Network to support LifeTime training activities.
WPX consolidates the WP working groups to develop the subprojects required for LifeTime applications and to coordinate the production of the final proposal for LifeTime . This includes the consolidated LifeTime vision, a strategic long-term research roadmap, a blueprint for the implementation of the initiative, an effective scientific leadership and governance structure, support from and involvement of industry as well as an approach to address responsible research and innovation. All WP leaders are part of WPX.
- Task X.1. Define subprojects to establish the LifeTime Technology Platform and its applications to study selected diseases.
- Task X.2. Define LifeTime application, clinical and go-to-market subprojects and further develop subprojects defined by task X.1.
- Task X.3. Define the long term S&T Roadmap to realise the LifeTime vision.
- Task X.4. Develop the Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) approach.
- Task X.5. Embed the S&T Roadmap within the organisation structure of LifeTime to produce the implementation blueprint of the large scale research initiative.
- Task X.6. Write the LifeTime governance structure, decision-making processes and scientific leadership.
- Task X.7. Complete consolidated framework for LifeTime