EXPANSE (exosome powered tools for healthy living in urban settings) is a five-year project involving 20 academic and non-academic partners located in 14 European countries and the USA. Both RECETOX and IS Global are partners, and Utrecht University is the coordinator (Roel Vermeulen). EXPANSE focuses on the urban exposome, the complex interplay between the built, social, physico-chemical, food, and lifestyle aspects of the urban environment. RCX provides EXPANSE biomarkers of exposure data from its CELSPAC-YA (Central European Longitudinal Studies of Parents And Children – Young Adults) cohort. CELSPAC-YA succeeds the ELSPAC study. At least three of the internships planned in URBAN_X will benefit from the collaboration with EXPANSE. More information is available at https://expanseproject.eu/

ATHLETE (Advancing Tools for Human Early Life-course Exposome Research and Translation), coordinated by IS GLOBAL (Martine Vrijheid) “aims to develop a human exposome toolbox that can be used to evaluate the effects of a large number of environmental exposures in individuals, as well as in communities, in order to design policies and interventions to prevent or reduce their health impact.” RCX will join the Athlete project with its CELSPAC-TNG cohort with newly recruited participants.

As a result of its involvement in EXPANSE and ATHLETE, URBAN_X is also part of the European Human Exposome Network.

The Network is the world’s largest network of projects studying the impact of environmental exposure on human health.

“It brings together 9 research projects, receiving over €100 million from Horizon 2020, the EU’s framework programme for research and innovation. These projects address issues such as exposures to air quality, noise, chemicals, urbanisation etc. and health impacts, the projects’ results and will contribute to advancing the European Green Deal’s ambition to protect citizens’ health and well-being from pollution and environmental deterioration by providing new evidence for better preventive policies.”

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The EIRENE RI, a consortium of 50 partners from 17 countries across the EU and the USA and coordinated by RCX will serve as a pan‐European platform for assessment of environmental and human exposure and the potential health impacts through which harmonized and validated data will be collected, analyzed, and presented. It will provide a base for collaboration between existing and new initiatives at national, EU, and global levels, promote scientific excellence, share available facilities, samples, data, knowledge, and expertise. It will enhance the exploitation of existing experimental capacities, monitoring and biomonitoring programs, population cohorts, specimen banking, biobanking facilities, analytical laboratories, information databases, and capacities for bioinformatics support, biostatistics, and modeling.

On 30 June 2021 EIRENE was chosen as one of 11 new research infrastructures to be included in the ESFRI (European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures) Roadmap 2021 (see press release here). EIRENE will be the first EU infrastructure on human exposome (environmental determinants of health).  

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