Bridging boundaries

Innovating, Connecting & Reshaping Drug Repurposing

6 & 7 March 2024



Join the first international drug repurposing conference, #iDR24, co-organised by REMEDi4ALL, Beacon and MeRIT on 6-7 March 2024 in Barcelona. 

In this global event, key opinion leaders from both the research and patient communities, funders, regulators and representatives from the private sector will participate to collectively advance innovative drug repurposing in Europe and beyond. 

6 & 7 March





Download the conference full programme here

Why join this event?

Connect with global experts and key opinion leaders and learn first-hand why and how drug repurposing is fast evolving to revolutionise the medicine development landscape.

Discover benefits

Discover how patient communities, researchers, industry and health authorities can benefit from cutting-edge drug repurposing.

Explore innovative ideas

In collaboration with key stakeholders and experts, explore innovative ideas to remove major roadblocks.

Open discussions

Discuss the current drug repurposing landscape and the challenges its faced with.

Share knowledge

Become part of a wider community that works together and shares knowledge, experiences and best practices.

Who is it for?


Organisations – Patient champions


Academia – Clinical – Industry – Early Career Researchers


Big pharma – Generics – Biotech – SMEs


Funding programmes – Philanthropic organizations – Payers



March 6


March 7


till 08:50



till 10:30

Opening plenary - Repurposing of medicines for all

Repurposing takes licensed medicines or investigational stage drugs and develops them as treatments for diseases for which they are not currently approved. Drug repurposing holds great promise to meet many of the unmet needs that still afflict patients. However, the full potential of repurposing may stay unrealised due to different systemic barriers. Over the last decade, and particularly since COVID, repurposing has received increased attention and success. New projects and collaborations have been developed globally, with the aim of unlocking the true potential of this alternative model to de novo drug discovery. In this session we will explore the growing impetus for repurposing globally, highlighting the European Commission’s impact in this field through both the newly funded project REMEDi4ALL, and the successful patient-led DevelopAKUre program. We will also examine global initiatives, highlighted particularly by the newly founded collaborative group, MERIT.


till 11:00

Morning break


till 12:30

Opening plenary - The challenge of translation

Successful translation relies on the clear definition of patient relevant outcomes measures that convince both regulators and payers of the success and value of a new treatment. The establishment of a target product profile (TPP) in the project design phase to guide analysis of critical gaps and the construction of a critical path for project execution are essential steps for this success. In this session, we will illustrate some of the challenges encountered by repurposing projects through the presentation of a real-life case study and bring together different stakeholders to discuss how to tackle the bottlenecks of the drug development process


till 14:00

Lunch break


till 15:30
Green Auditorium

Cancer path

Cancer patients need repurposed drugs

Various drugs already widely used for other diseases have shown promise for the treatment of specific cancers. Repurposing these drugs could allow new cancer treatments to be introduced relatively quickly and at reasonable cost, thereby meeting the unmet needs of patients and healthcare payers alike. This session will highlight, primarily from a patient’s perspective, how drug repurposing might address patients’ unmet medical needs, in particular for patients with rare cancers and with few therapeutic options.

Blue Auditorium

Methodologies path

Turn of times: From opportunistic discovery to data-driven hypothesis generation in drug repurposing 

Historically, drug repurposing (DR) was driven by curiosities in clinical observation. Modern scientific, technological and computational developments empower rational approaches to DR via generation and analysis of large-scale data.
Bringing on stage spearheading scientists, this session will showcase latest high-impact methodological advancements that are driving success stories in rational DR. To the wider DR community, importantly including patient groups, it thereby also facilitates a general understanding of the scientific methods behind generating and testing DR hypotheses, shed light on processes in the development of repurposed drugs, and hence enable participation, foster discussion, and build trust.

Yellow Auditorium

Rare diseases path

Why care about repurposing for rare diseases?

Advancing research in rare diseases is a challenging task. The high costs of drug development, limited knowledge about these conditions, and small patient populations make researching rare disease treatments less attractive than common conditions.

Where traditional drug development fails, drug repurposing offers a promising path to success for rare diseases. This session will delve into the potential of repurposing in rare diseases, benefitting stakeholders from patient groups to the pharmaceutical industry.


till 16:00

Afternoon break


till 17:30
Green Auditorium

Cancer session

Selecting the strongest DR candidates to move to the clinic

Multiple techniques can be used to identify and validate drug repurposing candidates, from literature-based methods to retrospective and observational studies to in silico modelling to high-throughput drug screening to AI/machine learning. This session will explore a variety of techniques as applied to finding repurposing candidates for a range of different cancers.

Blue Auditorium

Methodologies session

Mind the gap: What are the blockers and how can we smoothen the transition from discovery to clinic? 

Fractionated data landscape, inaccessibility of historical data, incompatibilities of workflows etc. – the path to bring a repurposed drug to the patients faces numerous obstacles even after a DR hypothesis has been validated.
This session will analyse common hurdles, including a regulator’s perspective on gaps in data, and discuss strategies and frameworks to ensure that data, once produced, can be used and re-used to their full potential. Once more, patient groups are central in the endeavour towards sustainable data and smooth transition as they can generate the momentum required to collectively change and overcome existing structure and modernize regulation.

Yellow Auditorium

Rare Diseases session

Leading a drug repurposing project

Drug repurposing has the potential to streamline the development of treatments for rare diseases, reducing the time, cost, and knowledge gaps. This effectively lowers the barriers to initiating research, making it an attractive prospect for patient group, clinician and academic-led repurposing projects.

In this session, we will showcase the experiences of these stakeholders who have been actively engaged in propelling repurposing research forward, offering valuable insights into the challenges and opportunities they’ve encountered along the way.

Beacon’s infamous lightning talk challenge will fill the second half of the session. Attendees will have the opportunity to submit lighting talk proposals during registration for the conference with 5-6 selected in advance. 


till 19:00

Drinks reception / Poster sessions


till 09:00



till 11:00
Green Auditorium

Cancer path

Trialling repurposed drugs with access to patients in mind

Proving that a selected drug candidate is a safe and effective treatment is not trivial. It requires a series of clinical trials with go/no-go decisions after each of them. Some clinical development paths will remain with the same company or academic group, whereas other paths will be less straightforward with each subsequent trial building on results generated by others. The challenges of running clinical trials with repurposing candidates that will ultimately reach patients will be explored in this session.

Blue Auditorium

Methodologies path

Reality check: Can methodological advancement unlock the promises of drug repurposing? 

What is hype and what is real? Can technological advancements, such as artificial intelligence, live up to their promise to systematically harness the full potential of already available drugs, to – ultimately – enable fast and cost-effective drug development to the benefit of all patients?

This session will scrutinize the potential of novel methods and their limitations. It includes a patient-centric perspective with success stories and analyses on, e.g., digital health, where scientific content as well as ethical and legal considerations are brought on stage.

Yellow Auditorium

Rare diseases path

The evolving rare disease landscape: past, present, and future  

In this session, we will examine projects that have delivered tangible benefits for rare disease patients; uncovering the driving forces behind their success and reflecting on how the modern landscape might have influenced their repurposing strategies.

We will then explore on-going repurposing initiatives and their prospects for success. We will assess the collaborations that have been crucial to their achievements, whilst identifying areas where additional support is required.

Finally, we will review forward-thinking initiatives in drug repurposing for rare diseases; asking how collaboration and scalability can systemise the repurposing approach and, in turn, deliver greater benefit to the patients who require it most.


till 11:30

Morning break


till 12:30

Getting repurposed drugs to patients

Panel discussion focussing on the routes to market, the existing barriers, and the new initiatives designed to improve the landscape.


till 13:30

Lunch break


till 15:00

Closing plenary

Challenges and opportunities in drug repurposing 

Presentation of the winning poster from the poster session  

Panel session: ‘Trick or treat’: Learnings from the LoDoCo case

Colchicine is a generic, old, low cost, anti-inflammatory drug used for gout. It was repurposed by Dutch and Australian researchers in the low-dose colchicine (LoDoCo; 0.5 mg) 2 trial for secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease. Groundbreaking results were found and published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine in 2020. The research was co-funded through government and generic medicine companies. Despite the groundbreaking results, researchers and companies involved have not yet filed for market authorization for this new indication in the EU. The main reason is lack of perspective on return of investment for the involved generic companies. In June 2023, a third party – that did not invest in the LoDoCo2 trial – registered colchicine 0.5 mg as LoDoCo® in the USA. The market authorization was partly based on public literature through the 505(b)(2) route and was possible due to the lack of 0.5 mg colchicine in the USA. The retail price for Lodoco® is $621 for a 30-day supply – nearly $21/pill.

In this session we will discuss the key learnings from the low-dose colchicine case – including what a viable business case is – for drug repurposing in general.

Keynote: From Serendipity to Systemized Drug Repurposing: Unlocking the lifesaving potential of FDA-approved medicines – Grant Mitchell (EveryCure)

Sum up and close

After the iDR24 the members and observers of the REMEDi4ALL Funders Network will come together to discuss the next steps of the network. Learn more and register here.

Download the conference full programme here


There are three different ticket types for this conference. If you are unsure what is your ticket group, please email

We appreciate there may be a financial-barrier to small patient groups and patients in attending this conference. We hope to be able to support these individuals in attending where possible. Please get in touch with to discuss your needs.


Cancellation policy: All cancellations must be received in writing to 15 calendar days prior to the start of the event (20 February 2024) and will be subject to an administration fee of the ticketing platform. For cancellation after this time – or if the delegate fails to attend the event- no refund of fees may be expected and the amount of the invoice is due. Substitutions are welcome at no extra charge but only until 1 March 2024.

Early Career Researcher: someone who is within eight years of the award of the PhD

Early Bird Tickets

General Admission

This is the most common ticket. Unless you belong to one of the groups listed below, this is the ticket you should select.



Early Bird Tickets

Academia/Clinician & Regulatory/Government

This ticket is reserved for clinicians, academics, scientists, HTAs, regulatory and government bodies.



Early Bird Tickets

Patients, Early Career Researchers & Charities

This ticket is reserved for patient organisations, patients, patient caregivers, students, early career researchers, and charities.



Conference Poster Session: Call for Abstracts

We are thrilled to announce an engaging Poster Session during our upcoming #iDR24 conference, providing a platform to showcase research and innovations in the field of drug repurposing.
Submit your abstract

Abstract Submission Deadline: January 12, 2024

Categories for Poster Submissions

The Patient Voice in Repurposing Research
Cross-border Collaborations in Repurposing
Challenges and Opportunities in Drug Repurposing
Innovative Methods to Identify Repurposing Opportunities
Sponsorship opportunities

Interested in becoming a sponsor of this event?

Showcase your business to a diverse audience, including researchers, the patient community, funders, regulators, and representatives from the private sector. As a sponsor, you'll get unique visibility through strategic logo placements, exhibition space, social media exposure, networking opportunities, and more. Contact our sponsorship team at to find out more about the various sponsorship packages available.

Contact sponsorship team

Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau

The international drug repurposing conference “Bridging Boundaries: Innovating, Connecting & Reshaping Drug Repurposing” will take place in the Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau (Barcelona) between 6-7 March 2024.

This modernist complex was constructed between 1901 and 1930 by the renowned architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner. It is composed of 12 interconnected pavilions and served as a hospital (Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau) until June 2009. In 2014 it opened its doors again, this time as a museum and event space.

Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau
Carrer de Sant Antoni Maria Claret, 167
08025 Barcelona



REMEDi4ALL is an EU-funded research initiative that is driving forward the repurposing of medicines in Europe.

Beacon: For Rare Diseases (BEACON) - United Kingdom
Beacon for rare diseases

Beacon is a UK-based charity that is building a united rare disease community with patient groups at its heart.


The Medicines Repurposing International Network (MERIT) supports collaboration and communication between publicly funded repurposing initiatives.



LifeArc is a self-financing medical research charity. Our ambition is to transform the way diseases are identified and treated.



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