Public Private Partnership

One step closer to the realization of an artificial kidney

The Nephron+ project is funded by the EU 7th Framework Programme. Dutch participants in this European public-private partnership are the Dutch Kidney Foundation, TNO, University Medical Center Utrecht and Nanodialysis. The goal of Nephron+ is to find a next-generation, integrated solution for personalized treatment and management of patients with chronic renal failure.

An important goal is the development of a portable artificial kidney that mimics the function of the kidneys, allowing continued dialysis and avoiding the sudden electrolyte disturbances associated with timed dialysis. In addition, it should operate largely autonomously and should require little to no patient intervention.

The portable artificial kidney represents an important step in reaching the ultimate goal: an artificial implantable biological kidney

Sources: (in Dutch) &

Endoscope testing improves safety and efficiency in surgery

A good-quality testing system for operating theatre instruments is key as the number of minimal invasive surgery procedures is growing. For example, quality checking of endoscopes is more and more important to ensure a safe and efficient surgical procedure.

In close co-operation with hospitals Dovideq medical developed with hospitals an objective method for testing endoscopes after washing and before sterilization. Although the key focus of the company is on technology, it is also very aware of the importance of practical applications and functionality. Industry feedback and observations of current working practices revealed that improvements are necessary. The advantages of endoscope testing are: patient risk minimization; improved endoscope quality during surgery; cost reduction; improved efficiency in work flow and reduction of delays. 

The company, granted the Young Technology award in 2012, consists of a dedicated team of specialists focusing on medical instrument users. In different hospitals current prototypes are going through clinical validation.


Surgery without Incisions: a non-invasive treatment of breast cancer

Each year, 12,000 Dutch women are diagnosed with breast cancer. The CTMM VOLTA project develops a thermal ablation therapy to kill tumor cells, without leaving externally visible scars.

The VOLTA partners include Philips, SyMO-Chem, Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands Cancer Institute (NKI), Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre and University Medical Center Utrecht. 

Jointly, they are working to apply MRI-guided High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (MRgHIFU) for non-invasive treatment of cancer. Ultrasound deposits heat in a controlled way deep inside the human body, in the tumor. Simultaneously, using MRI, the temperature is monitored at the precise location of the tumor. Patients are expected to recover more quickly and leave the hospital sooner, simultaneously leading to lower healthcare costs. In a first clinical study, the direct MRgHIFU ablation of tumours is currently carried out in breast cancer patients and also in patients with colorectal liver metastases.

The total project budget for VOLTA is 11 M€, of which 50% is provided by the Dutch government. The duration of the project is five years (2009–2014).


Endoscope testing improves safety and efficiency in surgery

Surgery without Incisions: a non-invasive treatment of breast cancer

Year In Review 2013 LSH Year In Review Magazine