EU Challenges reflect the policy priorities of the EU’s strategy addressing major concerns shared by citizens in Europe and elsewhere.

A challenge-based approach brings together resources and knowledge across different fields, technologies and disciplines, including social sciences and the humanities. This covers activities from research to market with a new focus on innovation-related activities, such as piloting, demonstration, test-beds, and support for public procurement and market uptake. It includes establishing links with the activities of the European Innovation Partnerships (EIP). Funding focuses on the following challenges:

  • Solidarity, recovery, and readiness
  • The green deal
  • Secure, clean and efficient energy.
  • Smart, green and integrated transport.
  • Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials.
  • Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research, and the Bioeconomy.
  • A Europe fit for the digital age
  • A stronger economy
  • Health, demographic change and wellbeing.
  • Europe in a changing world - inclusive, innovative and reflective societies.

Secure societies - protecting freedom and security of Europe and its citizens.


LIFESAVER (Nov 2021-Oct 2025) Living Impact on Fetal Evolution: Shelter-Analyze-Validate-Empower Regulations University of Galway, Dr Andrew Daly

Read recent a recent press release announcing the project here

EuroGCT (2021-2026) The EU-funded EuroGCT project will develop reliable and accessible management of gene and cell therapy development information for European stakeholders.

IPSpine (2019-2024) The iPSpine consortium was formed to initiate a European-led research effort to identify a future advanced therapeutic strategy that results into a radical new treatment of IDD-induced LBP. With their multi-disciplinary expertise in the development of advanced therapies and their translation from bench to bedside, the aim of the iPSpine team is to investigate and develop a new advanced therapy medicinal product (ATMP) of the future, based on a novel developmental biology-based therapeutic strategy employing pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) and smart biomaterials.

RESPINE (2017-2023) RESPINE aims to assess, via a multicentre, randomized, controlled, phase 2b clinical trial including 112 patients, with degenerative disc disease the efficacy of an allogeneic intervertebral mesenchymal stem cell (MSC)-based therapy.  This innovative therapy aims to rapidly (within 3 months) and sustainably (at least 24 months) reduce pain and disability. 

Autocrat (2020-2023) The goal of the EU-funded AutoCRAT project is to develop novel sustainable cell and cell-derived therapies for osteoarthritis. The project will use human-induced pluripotent stem cells for generation of articular chondrocytes for cartilage repair and human-induced mesenchymal stem cells for disease prevention and for the treatment of established disease. As an extended goal, the project will investigate potential application of the mesenchymal stem cell secretome as a next-generation therapy and will produce the therapeutics identified in the project using cost-effective robot-enabled processes in a novel manufacturing platform to expedite translation to patients.

INSIST (2017-2022) The main goal of INSIST was to advance treatments of ischemic stroke and its introduction in clinical practice by realizing in silico clinical stroke trials in which stroke and treatment are modeled. Virtual populations of stroke patients were created to generate and validate in silico models for intra-arterial thrombectomy, thrombosis and thrombolysis, and microvascular perfusion and neurological deterioration after stroke, and integrate the in silico models to realize an in silico clinical stroke trial.

InSilc (2017-2021) The goal was to create in-silico trials for drug-eluting BVS development and evaluation to develop an in-silico clinical trial (ISCT) platform for designing, developing and assessing drug-eluting bioresorbable vascular scaffolds (BVS).

NEPHSTROM (2015-2021) conducted a multi-centre, placebo-controlled clinical trial of a novel mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) therapy for stabilization of progressive DKD, leading to superior clinical outcomes and long-term socioeconomic benefit. A key enabler for this trial was the novel MSC population (CD362+MSC, trade name ORBCEL-M) which delivers higher purity and improved characterisation compared to conventional plastic-adherent MSC. NEPHSTROM Phase 1b/2a clinical trial investigateed the safety, tolerability and preliminary efficacy of a single intravenous infusion of allogeneic ORBCEL-M versus placebo in adults with progressive DKD.