Future prospects

Personalised medicine tailors treatment and care to the individual patient. It is a concept that already plays a major role in medicine today, and one in which Essen already has a strong track record. But it is also set to develop rapidly in future. The cornerstones of that development will be bioinformatics, artificial intelligence and blockchain technology. That is why it is necessary to invest now and take this development forward in a constructive and purposeful way. In the next five years, work will be done to identify how best to handle the huge volumes of data that are associated with personalised medicine. Big data is an essential part of the process, not just for research but in clinical medicine and teaching, too. Establishing an excellent large-scale non-university research facility in Essen seems to be the next step needed to make the best possible progress in this area. It will benefit not only the Medical Faculty of the University of Duisburg-Essen; this and comparable investments in research and clinical medicine can be critically important beyond Essen for all the centres in North Rhine-Westphalia. Essen works closely with most of the other universities in NRW in some area or capacity. This is intended to continue and grow across the state and acknowledges that limited resources make meaningful collaboration with third parties a success factor for all those involved. It will then be possible in future for certain “core facilities” to be provided at one location rather than at them all.