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Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB)

Personalising Medical Care



In 2008 the Luxembourg government announced its 'Health Initiative' which consisted in investing significant amounts of resources in Luxembourg's biotechnology sector. The goal of this initiative was to transform the Grand Duchy into a center of excellence in the area of personalized medicine.

Personalized medicine is an emerging field of medicine that aims to improve medicine through more individualized care. This is largely made possible thanks to new technologies that provide data such as genome sequences and gene expression profiles to the physicians. These data types will support doctors in more accurately diagnosing disease and treating individual patients.

Key players of the Luxembourg biomedical sector are the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB) and the University’s Life Sciences Research Unit (LSRU), as well as the Luxembourg Institute of Health (LIH) and its Integrated Biobank of Luxembourg (IBBL). Together with the latter two, the LCSB forms the Personalised Medicine Consortium (PMC) of Luxembourg.

Accelerating Biomedicine

The LCSB was founded in 2009 as the first biomedical research centre of the University of Luxembourg. Since September 2011, the LCSB has been based on the new University campus in Esch-sur-Alzette.

The main goal of the LCSB is to accelerate biomedical research by closing the link between systems biology and medical research.

The LCSB focuses on the study of neurodegenerative diseases, with an emphasis on Parkinson’s disease.

The LCSB currently counts around 230 employees and 16 research groups, split into three parts:

  • computational (Bioinformatics Core, Biomedical Data Science, Computational Biology, Molecular Systems Physiology, Systems Biochemistry and Systems Control);
  • experimental (Chemical Biology, Eco-Systems Biology, Developmental & Cellular Biology, Enzymology & Metabolism, Experimental Neurobiology, Integrative Cell Signalling, Molecular & Functional Neurobiology);
  • clinically-oriented translational (Medical Translational Research, Clinical & Experimental Neuroscience).

Close collaboration with clinicians and patients are of utmost importance to the LCSB. Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease and description of diseases as networks are at the focus of the LCSB’s research. It aims to contribute to earlier diagnosis and personalized treatment, for instance through its coordinating role in the recently established National Centre of Excellence in Research on Parkinson’s Disease.

The Centre has established strategic partnerships with leading biomedical laboratories worldwide and with all major biological and medical research units in Luxembourg. The LCSB fosters collaboration with industrial partners and accelerates the translation of fundamental research results into (clinical) applications.

The LCSB also hosts the Luxembourgish node of ELIXIR, the European infrastructure for life science information. ELIXIR-LU focuses on long-term sustainability of tools and data for Translational Medicine. Translational Medicine data integrate clinical information with molecular and cellular data for a better understanding of diseases. They bridge the gap between the molecular level, findings from the laboratory, and the clinical observations and applications. ELIXIR-LU aims to facilitate long-term access to those research data and to tools for scientists in both academia and industry. This will allow the reuse of previously generated translational data to address new research questions and dramatically save time and cost.

Contact: Rudi Balling - Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB)