Towards a 21st-century roadmap for biomedical research and drug discovery: consensus report and recommendations

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To discover and develop new therapies, we need 21st-century roadmaps for biomedical research based on multiscale human disease pathways, and supported by policy and funding strategies that prioritise human relevance.

Decades of costly failures in translating drug candidates from preclinical disease models to human therapeutic use warrant reconsideration of the priority placed on animal models in biomedicalresearch. Following an international workshop attended by experts from academia, governmentinstitutions, research funding bodies, and the corporate and non-governmental organisation (NGO) sectors, in this consensus report, we analyse, as case studies, five disease areas with major unmet needs

for new treatments. In view of the scientifically driven transition towards a human pathways-based paradigm in toxicology, a similar paradigm shift appears to be justified in biomedical research. There is a pressing need for an approach that strategically implements advanced, human biology-based models and tools to understand disease pathways at multiple biological scales. We present recommendations to help achieve this.

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