TSB supports R&D to fight sepsis


The Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and the Department of Health will invest up to £7.5m in new R&D projects to improve the diagnosis and treatment of sepsis.

The funding will be made available through two collaborative R&D funding competitions within the new Detection and Identification of Infectious Agents (DIIA) Innovation Platform.

Sepsis, a serious condition caused by the body’s reaction to infection, causes 60,000 deaths in the UK every year.

The first competition, ‘Multi-pathogen detection and/or simple discrimination’, will see public sector investment of up to £5m in collaborative R&D projects to develop point-of-care diagnostic tools for sepsis – for example, to distinguish between bacterial and viral infections.

In the second competition, ‘Advancing biomarker use in sepsis management’, up to £2.5 million will be invested in collaborative R&D to advance the use of biomarkers in the management of sepsis.

Zahid Latif, the TSB’s Head of Healthcare, said: “There is universal agreement that there is a need for new and improved diagnostic tools to help clinicians in the management of sepsis. The products developed will help to reduce the economic burden, death and illness from sepsis and infectious diseases and create opportunities for British companies in the huge global market for diagnostic devices.”

The new TSB-managed DIIA Innovation Platform aims to support R&D into diagnostic tests and devices that will reduce the number of deaths and cases of severe illness caused by infection, while reducing the cost of treatment.

The TSB is a business-led government body that brings together business, research and the public sector to support the development of innovative products and services.