Home> News> The HARMONY Alliance is set to become a research foundation

The HARMONY Alliance is set to become a research foundation

June 07, 2023 10:00 - x 00, 0 - 00:00

#bigdataforbloodcancer, Big Data Platform, BigData

Over the past six years, the HARMONY Alliance (IMI-HARMONY and IMI-HARMONY PLUS) has revolutionized the use of big data to accelerate developments in treating and managing patients with Hematological Malignancies. We have built a robust, open, collaborative research community that leverages big data to improve patient care.

The EU grant phase (European Commission’s Innovative Health Initiative, IHI, formerly known as IMI) that made this possible ends this year. Thanks to the strong commitment and drive of the multi-stakeholder partners and members involved in HARMONY, we have the unique opportunity to continue our work as a non-profit, collaborative research foundation. This new foundation will build upon the achievements of the HARMONY Alliance and bring hematology research and patient care to the next level.

Impressive track record

The HARMONY Alliance is a community with over 500 professionals, more than 120 partners/member organizations from 19 European countries, including hospitals, universities, medical associations, 9 big pharma companies, HTAs, tech enterprises and a patient cluster with 9 European patient organizations. When HARMONY started in 2017, the hematology community was embarking on a journey towards embracing data sharing and recognizing the transformative power of big data. HARMONY set a crucial milestone when this endeavor was only starting. By laying the foundation for future collaborations, advancements, and discoveries that would incorporate state-of-the-art technologies in the field of hematology, HARMONY is making its contribution to improve the understanding and treatment of blood disorders.

Now, just six years later, we have transformed both the sharing and use of data. We have developed the Big Data Platform with a data lake that already contains data from 93,000 patients and has identified an additional 60,000 patient records that will be included in the months to come. All data is protected using a unique anonymization and security process. In more than 30 research projects, groundbreaking research is being carried out with the help of advanced customized data analytic services, including AI modelling.

Launchpad to the next level

Our impressive track record and the strong commitment of everyone involved in the alliance provide a superb launchpad to bring hematology research and patient care to the next level. In a unique collaborative research foundation, we will expand the HARMONY Big Data Platform with new services, including access to large longitudinal datasets, real-world evidence data, and virtual / in-silico data and will facilitate further connection and collaboration with other data innovation initiatives. Ultimately, this unique data-driven research infrastructure will allow us to define new outcome indicators, to facilitate post-authorization studies, and help healthcare professionals quickly determine the best personalized treatment and care for blood cancer patients.

Benefits of the new foundation

Our new foundation will benefit members by transforming high-quality data into meaningful evidence. Stakeholders will be actively engaged and encouraged to participate in study-a-thons. Insights and expertise that have a real impact on clinical duties and patients’ lives will be shared. Access to the Big Data Platform will be based on users’ specific research questions and foundation members will be able to access data analysis support and toolboxes via a dashboard. More hospitals, universities, and companies will be encouraged to join the foundation to expand the pool of data, knowledge, and expertise. And we will continue to maintain close connections with other initiatives, such as EHDEN and DARWIN EU, for our mutual benefit.

Public interest ensured

The foundation will be public-benefit oriented. This will foster an inclusive and collaborative mindset as well as continuous involvement by ensuring that all current partners are considered equal members. Last but not least, patients will be given a clear voice in the foundation and the patient-centered approach will remain paramount in all research our members do.

HARMONY Alliance partners already indicating their interest to become part of the new foundation are: Aarhus University Hospital, AbbVie, Alma Mater Studiorum - Università di Bologna, Amsterdam UMC, Associazione Angela Serra per la ricerca sul Cancro, Blood Cancer Network Ireland, Cardiff University, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Erasmus MC, European Hematology Association (EHA), European LeukemiaNet (ELN), FISiM, Fondazione GIMEMA – Franco Mandelli Onlus, Fundació Privada Institut d’Investigació Oncologica de Vall-Hebron (VHIO), GFM (Groupe Francophone des Myelodysplasies), Hannover Medical School, Hemocentro-University of Campinas, Hôpital St Louis, Hospital Universitario 12 de Octubre, Hospital Universitario de Gran Canaria Dr Negrin, HOVON, IISLAFE (Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria La Fe), INFN-CNAF, Institute of Hematology and Blood Transfusion (UHKT), IRCCS Humanitas Research Hospital, IRCCS San Gerardo, Karolinska Institutet, IBSAL (Institute for Biomedical  Research of Salamanca), Institute of Oncology from Moldova , International CML Foundation, LeukaNET, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Masaryk University – CEITEC, Medical University of Wroclaw, MLL Münchner Leukämielabor, Pfizer, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Singapore General Hospital, Tor Vergata University, Universitätsklinikum Essen, University of Ferrara, University of Florence, University of Helsinki, University of Medicine and Pharmacy Carol Davila Bucharest, University of Salamanca, University of Ulm.

Contact: Ellen P.B. de Waal, HARMONY Alliance Lead Communications, e.dewaal@ehaweb.org

#bigdataforbloodcancer | Accelerating Better and Faster Treatment for Patients with Hematologic Malignancies.

The HARMONY Alliance (HARMONY and HARMONY PLUS) is a public-private partnership for Big Data in Hematology and uniting more than 120 organizations such as European medical associations, hospitals, research institutes, patient organizations, pharmaceutical companies, IT companies, and health technology assessment/regulatory agencies. Our mission is to unlock and spread valuable knowledge on Hematologic Malignancies (blood cancers) among a large number of stakeholders, with the goal to harness and mine Big Data to speed up the development of improved treatments for patients and more effective treatment strategies. 

HARMONY and HARMONY PLUS are funded through IMI (now called IHI, the Innovative Health Initiative). Funding is received from the IMI 2 Joint Undertaking and is listed under grant agreement for HARMONY No. 116026 and grant agreement for HARMONY PLUS No. 945406. This Joint Undertaking receives support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA).

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