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This Briefing forms part of an EPRS series which offers a synthesis of the pre-legislative state-of-play and advance consultation on a range of key European Commission priorities during the latter’s five-year term in office. It seeks to summarise the state of affairs in the relevant policy field, examine how existing policy is working on the ground, and identify best practice and ideas for the future on the part of governmental organisations at all levels of European system of multilevel governance ...

Nanoparticles lie at the heart of a new method for delivering medicines inside the body – and they were crucial to the success of the Covid-19 mRNA vaccines. This new drug delivery method and others could transform the way we treat disease, potentially boosting the treatment of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and HIV, among others. Insulin and Covid-19 vaccines might even become available as pills. Can the European Union stay on top of this trend? And what challenges lie ahead?

Regenerative medicine (RM) is an interdisciplinary field that applies engineering and life science techniques to restore tissues and organs damaged by age, disease or trauma, as well as those with congenital defects. Promising data supports the future capability of using RM across a wide array of organ systems and contexts, including surface wounds, cardiovascular diseases and traumas and treatments for certain types of cancer.

EU public health policy

Briefing 27-07-2020

This paper explains the origins and current role of public health policy at European Union level, details how the Union has responded to the 2020 coronavirus pandemic to date, and analyses the European Commission’s recent proposal for a flagship policy initiative in this field, the EU4Health programme, which could represent a 'paradigm shift' in how the EU deals with health. It then goes on to explore a range of possible further initiatives that could be taken to over the medium- to long-term to ...

Potentially negative effects of internet use

Analisi approfondita 13-05-2020

It is increasingly recognised that the internet, in spite of all its benefits to society, can also be correlated with significant harms to individuals and society. Some of these harms have been studied extensively, particularly harms to privacy, harms associated with security and cybercrime, and harms resulting from digital divides. This report covers less studied but equally important harms: harms associated with internet use that concern the health, well-being a functioning of individuals, and ...

Recent research suggests that the future combat against antimicrobial resistance (AMR) may involve probiotic-based approaches. Their use in our microbial ecosystems, including humans, animals and the healthcare environment, may provide a novel approach which deserves exploration.

What if digital technology could assist drug addiction recovery by online counselling, monitoring behaviour, and real-time interventions in patients’ everyday lives? Assistance at a distance: how could clinicians, health personnel, friends and family support a patient suffering from drug addiction via digital technology?

Drug disorders are complex social and health problems that affect millions of people in the EU. In the last two decades, we have witnessed an extraordinary growth in computer and mobile technologies available to the general public. Researchers in the field of drug addiction have started to exploit the growth of the internet and new technologies, and an increasing number of interventions designed to promote changes in substance use disorders are now available. The study includes an extensive critical ...

ICT in the developing world

Studio 21-12-2015

Over recent years, there have been increasing opportunities for inhabitants of low and middle-income countries (LMICs) to use information and communication technologies (ICT). ICT can potentially help LMICs tackle a wide range of health, social and economic problems.By improving access to information and enabling communication, ICT can play a role in achieving millennium development goals (MDGs) such as the elimination of extreme poverty, combating serious diseases, and accomplishing universal primary ...