Degenerative non-communicable diseases (cardiovascular, diabetes, cancer, etc.) are progressively expanding in all world regions and not only in industrialized countries. Among many other causes, of particular relevance are the extension of longevity and the progressive industrialization that have suddenly subverted life styles evolutionarily consolidated in centuries. The final result is that degenerative diseases affect million individuals generating a massive demand of efficient and sophisticated treatments.
This scenario implies that expenses related to degenerative diseases will exponentially increase within a few years. At present, the global cost for cardiovascular diseases only is around 700 billion USD and will reach 1000 billion USD in 2025: a burden hardly sustainable by families and public/private insurances in the mid-long term.
The relentless progression of the degenerative disease can only be opposed by optimizing the healthcare organization and developing revolutionary therapies. In this respect, treatments based on the administration of living (stem or non-stem) cells or the implantation of engineered tissues to functionally support injured organs will play a major role. Engineered tissues fabricated with human cells will also be extremely useful as models to develop novel medicaments. These perspectives have ignited great enthusiasm in recent years, but current technologies are not mature enough to guarantee an easy and safe application to the largest number of patients.
The University of Rome Tor Vergata, through the Center for Regenerative Medicine (CIMER), is committed to move forward the knowledge and technology in the field of regenerative medicine. To this purpose, the Center membership is open not only to intramural scientists, but also to the brightest scholars working in other national and international research centers and industries who can be interested to share knowledge and technical prowess and to jointly develop novel technologies. CIMER stimulates the dynamic creativity of chemists, physicists, engineers, material scientists, biochemist, molecular and cellular biologists, experts in bioinformatics, pharmacologists and clinical doctors in order to accelerate the implementation of highly complex projects designed to identify novel biomaterials, to optimize cell behavior when grown on biomaterials, to properly implant engineered tissues, to exploit engineered tissue potential in drug discovery and delivery, to implement stringent clinical trials. In this context, CIMER also promotes highly profiled educational Programmes (PhD and Masters) involving national and international experts and laboratories.