Imagine a World Free of IBD: IBD Stress Test QuickFire Challenge
As a growing population faces Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), a worldwide community from over 50 countries came together to raise awareness and unite people worldwide in their fight against this disease on World IBD Day on May 19, 2018. Janssen Research & Development alongside Johnson & Johnson Innovation, JLABS joined in the conversation, urging action and announcing the IBD Stress Test Quickfire Challenge to award innovators who generate the best stress test solutions up to $50,000USD in grant funding, and help developing their ideas.
IBD, which includes Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, is characterized by chronic inflammation of the digestive tract. Symptoms can include severe abdominal pain, diarrhea, fatigue, and weight loss. Diagnosis is challenging and often delayed, leading many patients to progress to advanced stages of the disease, requiring surgery.
And the numbers are growing – IBD affects more than 5 million people worldwide, and has demonstrated a rising incidence in newly industrialized countries in Africa, Asia, and South America.
While there is no known cure, increasing evidence indicates that genetic and microbial factors, combined with environmental and lifestyle factors or “stressors” including infections, antibiotics, and diet, likely impact the development of IBD. Creating a systematic approach to tracking and analyzing a person’s responses to stressors could provide a path forward to better diagnose, treat, and prevent IBD.
Taking inspiration from stress tests such as the glucose tolerance test for diagnosing gestational diabetes and the cardiac stress test for diagnosing heart disease, we are looking to the best and brightest innovators across the globe to create an “IBD Stress Test” in an effort to better evaluate an individual’s immune and gastrointestinal health and ultimately predict risk of IBD.
At Janssen Research & Development and Johnson & Johnson Innovation, JLABS, we have a successful history in creating new markets, delivering breakthrough innovation and establishing strong partnerships built on a shared vision. We believe a good idea can come from anywhere, and it’s our goal to break through the noise of the crowded landscape and to accelerate the development of novel technologies, treatments, and pharmaceuticals to provide solutions to patients.
Together, let’s take a step towards a world free of IBD.