09 May 2013

Medicon Valley visit, fourth day

  • Posted by Katherine Nelissen

This morning we woke up in the Radisson Blue Hotel in Malmö, which was awarded “Best Conference Facility 2011”, to start our final day in Scandinavia. We spent our last day on Medicon village, a new centre for research, innovation and entrepreneurship within life sciences. Ursula Hilkvist Bengtsson, the Vice President of Medicon village, told us the story about how Medicon Village was started in January 2012 in the research facility of AstraZeneca, that decided in March 2010 to relocate its research activities from Lund to Mölndal. This was a very inspiring story for our Belgian delegation since we are facing comparable challenges with the closure of Ford Genk in 2014. We received a guided tour through Medicon Village, and our delegation got the opportunity to meet several Medicon Village companies in the B2B session. On this closing day, both Minister Vandeurzen and Minister Lieten gave their point of view on the importance of this visit for the Flemish Healthcare sector.

After 4 very fruitful but exhausting days we returned to Copenhagen airport, for the flight home.

08 May 2013

Medicon Valley visit, third day

  • Posted by Katherine Nelissen

Today we started early for our transfer from Denmark to Sweden across the well-known öresund bridge which connects Copenhagen and Malmö. Arriving in Malmö, we received some information on the regions work in healthcare from the Medical Director from the Region Skåne. One of the Region Skåne owned companies ClinTrials Skåne AB presented in detail their activities as the industry’s gateway to all resources available for clinical trials. In the afternoon, a factory visit of ArjoHuntleigh was included in the program. ArjoHuntleigh is a global provider of medical devices with approximately 4500 employees in more than 30 countries. We found out more about the ArjoHuntleigh philosophy and how it is translated into innovation and product development. The delegation also got the opportunity to “Touch and feel” some of the ArjoHuntleigh products.

In the evening we were kindly invited at the Malmö City Hall by the Mayor for the highlight of our visit to Medicon Valley: the official signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between Belgian Limburg and Medicon Valley. The goal of this understanding is to establish a long-term mutually beneficial international collaboration between both regions. With this collaboration we aim to strengthen both clusters in Europe. During the signing, which is strongly supported by the Flemish Government, all parties agreed to exert their best effort to develop a fruitful collaboration.

07 May 2013

Medicon valley visit, second day

  • Posted by Katherine Nelissen

Monday morning we got some insight into the Danish Health care system and how it can promote innovation in Health Care, for instance by supporting companies to step into healthcare or strengthen their healthcare activities. Next, we visited the tallest building in Denmark, the Herlev Hospital, where we received an introduction into the Heart Insufficiency Telemedicine (HIT) project in which heart failure patients at 4 of the Capital Region’s nine heart failure clinics are offered telemedicine treatment. During lunchtime we visited the recently opened, innovative elderly home Sønderhaven, which was followed by a visit to the science park Symbion that was built in 1986 and now houses around 250 entrepreneurs/companies. Here, several Danish healthcare companies presented their activities to our delegation. After a long, interesting day we had a relaxing dinner at restaurant Koefoed, which has a unique location below street level in the center of Copenhagen.


06 May 2013

Medicon Valley visit, first day

  • Posted by Katherine Nelissen

Sunday afternoon we left with fifty participants for our 4-day visit to the Medtech and Healthcare topregion in Scandinavia, Medicon Valley. We arrived in First Hotel Sankt Petri in Copenhagen, which was awarded the best business hotel in Scandinavia in 2010.  There we received an introduction to Medicon Valley from our local co-organizers Invest in Skåne and Biopeople who put a lot of effort in this visit. They gave an inspiring talk about how Medicon Valley became a top life sciences cluster. Afterwards, we were welcomed at our Belgian Ambassy in Copenhagen by the Belgian AmbassadorJean-François Branders.

19 March 2013

Digital revolution in physiotherapy

  • Posted by Michiel

Professor dr. Bert Op 't Eijnde is a specialist in sport sciences and exercise physiology at Hasselt University. He works with top sporters as well as people who just need physiotherapy and training. In both domains sensors and digital technology begin to have a major impact. In a bloginterview with the Microsoft Innovation Center Professor Op 't Eijnde explains why this evolution takes place.

22 January 2013

Portrait of prof. Stinissen

  • Posted by Michiel

The newspaper, Het Belang van Limburg, published a portret of prof. Stinissen. Read their full article. Read their full article by clicking on the image below or download the pdf.

21 September 2012

Wanted: Project Manager MedTech (M/F)

  • Posted by Michiel

For the support of innovative projects and initiatives in the domain of medical technology LifeTechLimburg is currently looking for a project manager (M/F). Deadline of application is 05/10/2012

Click on this link for the complete vacancy. 

04 September 2012

Zorgidee tweets, who follows?

  • Posted by Michiel

Microblogging is a lot less time consuming and often more to the point than the regular blogging. Since a couple of weeks we are testing the twitter medium and we discovered a broad range of organisations and individuals related to the healthcare sector who use this channel to spread their news. Not only hospitals but also specialised doctors, sector organisations and healthcare professionals are present. Together they offer a nice image of what's happening in healthcare. And that in only 140 characters max.

Interested in the latest zorgidee news: speakers, innovative projects, the program or opportunities to participate. Follow us at https://twitter.com/Zorgidee1

21 February 2012

Trends: life sciences hotspot Limburg

In the latest edition of the financial-economic magazine Trends, a nice article was published about the life sciences development in Limburg. This on the occasion of the announcement of the plans to expand BioVille, the life sciences incubator on the University Campus in Diepenbeek.

Read the full article below (dutch). By clicking the image you can enlarge the article.

13 September 2011

Vividlinks tour starts in London

  • Posted by Michiel Stoffels

With the Euregion as epicenter for the activities of Vividlinks.eu the portal is expanding towards a bigger geographical scope. For further growth it’s important to step out of the region and to show the outsiders what’s happening inside. With a trackrecord of 250 company profiles, an average of 100 jobs available on a daily basis and 800 profiles of young professionals who are in search of a challenging job Vividlinks.eu is the ideal instrument to offer you the insights.

First appointment on our promo tour will be London where we attend the Naturejobs Career Expo on the 22nd of September. Next stop is the European jobdays in Brussels on the 1st of October. Then we will set our booth in Bochum, near Munchen, to attend ScieCon on the 26th of October. We stay in Germany and will be present at the Night of the Companies in Aachen on the 9th of November. In Hasselt we join the Creativity World Forum, 16 and 17 November, to claim a spot for the Life Sciences Industry as a vivid and innovative branch. Last stop so far will be Amsterdam where we use the forum of the Lab Career Event to promote Vividlinks.eu on the 22nd of November.

Of course we hope to meet you on our tour. In case you want to stay fully updated, feel free to subscribe to our newsletter, to join our groups on Facebook or LinkedIn or to follow our blogs.

07 September 2011

Maastricht University attracts 500 British students

  • Posted by Michiel

My attention was drawn by the following newsitem on the Flemish public television. The opening of the academic year at the University of Maastricht already revealed a trend, namely British students who are seeking for an affordable option to obtain their master degree find their way to the Dutch Universities. The President of the Executive Board of the University Maastricht, Martin Paul, speaks about a growth from 70 to 500 students in only one year. For the International image of the University it’s a strong asset, 45 percent of the student population has a foreign nationality.


The link to the newsitem on deredactie.be: http://www.deredactie.be/permalink/1.1104128


26 May 2011

Join us on LinkedIn

As a fairly young organisation -LifeTechLimburg was officially launched in 2008- in a young sector in Limburg, it's our ambition to map and unite what we call 'The Limburg Life Sciences Community'.

Organizing networking opportunities (such as Zorgidee, the Interregio meetings, and Biomedica), creating an euregional life sciences career portal VividLinks and restyling/updating our website are all part of our ambition to create this community.

As our website is steadily growing, we thought it was time to venture into new social media worlds. Most obvious choice was ofcourse Linkedin. After carefully considering all different sorts of names for our group, we went for the obvious: LifeTechLimburg. It's an open group that is just waiting for your input: discussions, partner matching, jobs, networking and interesting opportunities and much more.    

 Less than one month after its creation and with limited publicity, our LinkedIn group already counts more than 120 members.

 If you want to be part of 'The Limburg Life Sciences Community', please feel free to join us on LinkedIn!

09 May 2011

Ideas worth Spreading

Ideas worth spreading, that's the tag-line of TED. TED started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design. Since then its scope has become ever broader (www.TED.com).

And their way of spreading is highly efficient and effective. Most of their events are only accessible for a small audience, which makes these meetings unique and intimate. Besides the off-line event however, all lectures are published online, so a broader audience can taste the refreshing ideas of the speakers. Among them people like Al Gore, Isabel Allende, Bono, Richard Branson and Philip Zimbardo.

On April 4th 2011 Maastricht hosted "TEDxMaastricht", completely dedicated towards the future of Health. This event illustrated the power of the formula. Catchy website, quality movies and content that will be spread around. Take a look at the performance of Simon Sinek who speaks about "First why and then trust."

Pecha Kucha Maastricht. Pecha Kucha, which means “chit chat”, is a concept that is bound to strict rules: 20 slides that you can comment for 20 seconds each. The result, extremely motivated speakers that try to convince you about their ideas. Get to know Cyriel Kortleven who tells his story on the topic: Develop a 'Yes, and ...' attitude


23 February 2011

Update on the Zorgidee awards

During the first edition of Zorgidee 2010, the audience of health care professionals, academics and companies awarded two Zorgidee awards to the projects they believed had the most innovation potential to improve healthcare. For session 1 the audience selected the project Novicept of Hasselt University (digital service platform for the elderly) and Aporis was selected for session 2.

But are these two projects/companies also the favorites of  our website readers? For session 1 the virtual award of Zorgidee is the Astrid project of the Sint Franciskus Hospital Heusden-zolder. The ASTRID project is a very interesting digital platform that offers a unique combination of services and cognitive exercises for people with dementia that still live at home. Session 2 also a new winner, the project Precardio. Precardio is a special example of a cardiovascular prevention programme that combines different forms of prevention methods.

All presentions held at Zorgidee are still downloadable from our website  

 Question : What is your favorite project?  Let's us know ! Or are there projects we should not forget for a next edition of Zorgidee?


11 February 2011

innovation heroes: Koba Vision

  • Posted by Caroline Steensels

Koba Vision uit Leopoldsburg vervaardigt hulpmiddelen voor blinden en slechtzienden. Zaakvoerder Johan Haagdorens, ingenieur van opleiding, bedacht en ontwierp de voorleesloep.

Johan Haagdorens: “De voorleesloep is ontstaan vanuit een eigen behoefte. Al meer dan 20 jaar ben ik slechtziend en lezen werd voor mij steeds moeilijker. Zelfs met een klassieke leesloep, die teksten vergroot op een scherm, was lezen een erg vermoeiend en tijdrovend klusje geworden dat je maar een minuut of 10 kan volhouden. Om 1 krant te lezen, had ik meerdere dagen nodig!

Daarom ging ik op zoek naar een eenvoudig, laagdrempelig, visueel hulpmiddel. Dat werd uiteindelijk de Vocatex, een voorleesloep die spraaktechnologie en vergrotingstechnologie combineert. Je kan er teksten mee selecteren die vergroot worden op een beeldscherm en die tegelijkertijd ook worden voorgelezen door de computer. Dankzij dit toestel kunnen slechtzienden opnieuw langere teksten lezen

04 February 2011

Innovation hero

The mission of the innovation Centre Limburg is to (pro-actively) inform, encourage and guide companies in the different phases of their innovation process.   

As interesting stories of successful innovations can be stimulating for other companies, the innovation centre recently started a new series on innovation in our region. 
Under the heading ‘innovation heroes from Limburg’, 12 interesting stories will be presented, representing different industries.  

Who are your innovation heroes in life sciences?  Let's find out if they have made in the ranking of the Innovation Centre

11 January 2011

Why you should cross the border in 2011!

Simple answer: because the grass is greener on the other side! March the second, the enthousiastic students of Maastricht organizes their yearly Life Sciences Career Event. We support with our presence at the job market and a powerful Master Class. The 15th of March, we come together in Aachen, to have a strategic HR Seminar on the Euregional labour Market, ever heard of Nightingales scenario’s?  In Eindhoven we meet again at Biomedica, the 7th and 8th  of April.  It’s a unique opportunity to meet young potentials and interesting companies in our Special Master Class. And finally we will present on our HR seminar in April success stories about cross border collaboration, we offer a stage to the believers.
Hope to meet you at one of our Skills³ activities or at Vividlinks.eu to discuss the colour of your grass!

06 January 2011

New funding available for health technology

On the 5th of January 2011, Capricorn Venture Partners announced that its Capricorn Health-tech Fund raised €42 million in a first closing.

The Capricorn Health-Tech Fund (CHF) will be focusing on early to mid-stage human health-technology companies in Europe. CHF defines health-technology as any technology based product used for the prevention, the diagnosis or the treatment of diseases and medical indications in humans. This includes the following subsectors: biopharmaceutical and pharmaceutical drugs, vaccines, medical devices, medical imaging, diagnostics, (research) equipment, nutraceuticals and functional foods.

This and other specialized funds such as LRM's life sciences fund can provide the necessary financial means to help fuel the development of the life sciences sector in Flanders!

28 November 2010

Books that inspire : "creativity"

A book that I found very inspiring, is the small booklet "Creativiteit", or creativity by Guillaume Van der Stighelen.

The booklet promises to deliver essence, and that's just what it does. It gives 10 short and practical excercises to stimulate the creativity of your brain. I particularly enjoyed the following exercises:

  • go from Maastricht to Liège by following the river Meuse and without using your GPS;
  • buy a dog
  • record a thought every day

 If you want to know what Guillaume means by 'buy a dog', you could read his book or ... you could just ask me... Creativity is also interaction


26 November 2010

The new German “Wirtschaftswunder”

The Belgian job magazine vacature.com discusses in one of its recent numbers, the new German “Wirtschaftswunder”. In the article 4 important reasons for this wonder are mentioned: unemployment payment for maximum one year, limited salary raises, installation of flexible working regimes and the creation of jobs with low wages. The result, a decrease of 2.5 million unemployed people in only 5 years time.

Question that we have to ask ourselves: should we follow the German example? “Yes”, is the employers answer, because the measurements been taken, benefit their position to compete. “No”, is the answer of the employees, because the pressure to have a job is higher than ever before and weakens the position to negotiate about job conditions.  Some people see an important threat in this trend, the amount of people who’s earning the minimum wage grows and is this a blessing for the German welfare?  The truth will be somewhere in the middle!

25 November 2010

Zorgidee right on track

De inschrijvingen voor Zorgidee stromen goed binnen. Zonet is de kaap van 200 inschrijvingen. Bent u nummer 201?

Inschrijven is gratis, maar registratie is verplicht. Dit kan nog tot 4 december via onze website.

23 November 2010

Age estimation by using a drop of blood

Scientists at the Erasmus Medical Centre in Rotterdam found a method that can estimate a person's age by using a drop of blood.

The team of researchers discovered that, as a result of ageing, a given DNA molecule appears less often in blood. On that basis, they have developed a reliable and sensitive, but simple test with which one can determine the age group of a person.

Scientists are currently working to further refine the test, making it more accurate. The results have been published in the journal 'Current Biology'.

In short, it will be increasingly difficult for women to lie about their age ...



Is dat nu een voor- of een nadeel?

23 November 2010

Cough medicine as predictor

Onderzoekers van het Erasmus MC hebben ontdekt dat hoestsiropen kunnen voorspellen hoe goed patiënten het kankermedicijn tamoxifen omzetten. Veel vrouwen met borstkanker worden behandeld met dit medicijn.Tamoxifen zorgt dat de tumor minder snel groeit en de kans op uitzaaiingen kleiner wordt. Het medicijn moet door het lichaam worden omgezet naar de actieve stof endoxifen om zijn anti-kanker werking te kunnen doen. Sommige vrouwen zetten het middel  slechter om dan anderen, terwijl elke patiënt dezelfde dosering krijgt voorgeschreven.

In het onderzoek werd aan veertig borstkankerpatiënten een kleine dosis hoestsiroop gegeven, met de werkzame stof dextromethorfan, nadat ze tamoxifen innamen. Vervolgens werd door middel van bloedmonsters gekeken hoe de hoestsiroop en het geneesmiddel in het lichaam werden omgezet. "De manier waarop het lichaam de hoestsiroop omzet, komt grotendeels overeen met de manier waarop het lichaam tamoxifen omzet", zegt promovendus Anne-Joy de Graan van het Erasmus MC-Daniel den Hoed. Een hoestsiroop is een goed alternatief om mee te testen, omdat het minder bijwerkingen heeft dan het kankermedicijn tamoxifen.

"Het is cruciaal om vooraf te weten of vrouwen tamoxifen voldoende kunnen omzetten om het werkzaam te maken", zegt dr. Ron Mathijssen, internist-oncoloog en klinisch farmacoloog. "Als we van tevoren weten dat een vrouw het medicijn slecht kan omzetten, kunnen artsen overwegen de dosis te verhogen of om over te stappen op een ander middel."

17 November 2010

Sensor to measure corrosion of implants

Ingenieurs van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel hebben een manier ontdekt om corrosie of aantasting van metalen te kunnen meten op een snelle, eenvoudige en betrouwbare manier. Deze ontdekking heeft belangrijke gevolgen voor de veiligheid in ondermeer de medische wereld. Binnenkort wordt rond de nieuwe corrosiesensor een nieuwe spin-off opgericht.

Omdat de huidige procedure om de corrosie van metalen te meten erg omslachtig is, neemt men het zekere voor het onzekere en worden onderdelen geregeld vernieuwd, jaren voor hun ‘vervaldatum’. Metalen die worden blootgesteld aan water en lucht ondergaan na verloop van tijd immers een corrosieproces, wat ook hun sterkte aantast. Bekende voorbeelden zijn het roesten van ijzer, of het groen uitslaan van koper. Maar ook medische implantaten zoals kunstheupen en pacemakers zijn onderhevig aan corrosie… de risico’s zijn vaak enorm als het materiaal het begeeft.

Ingenieurs Tom Breugelmans en Yves Van Ingelgem van de VUB-vakgroep Materialen en Chemie hebben nu echter een nieuwe manier ontdekt om de corrosie van metalen op een snelle, eenvoudige en betrouwbare manier te testen. Hun techniek is gebaseerd op het principe van impedantiemetingen, waarbij metalen in een geleidende vloeistof worden blootgesteld aan een elektrochemisch signaal, waarna de respons van het metaal wordt opgemeten. Hieruit kan men afleiden of er een corrosiereactie is en hoe snel deze actief is. In tegenstelling tot het gangbare systeem is er voortaan geen gespecialiseerde corrosiedeskundige meer nodig om de metingen te interpreteren; dat doet de nieuwe meter zelf. Hij geeft gewoon aan of er ergens een probleem is, en kan dan ook door iedereen gebruikt worden.

Dankzij de nieuwe corrosiesensor zal men kunnen ingrijpen nog voor een pacemaker het begeeft, of zal men weten wanneer een kunstheup begint te corroderen nog voor de patiënt zelf pijn begint te voelen. Binnenkort wordt rond de nieuwe corrosiesensor een nieuwe spin-off opgericht.





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