Visit of Barcelona Global members to IBEC

IBEC is one of the research centres that are transforming Barcelona into a global science hub: this was the rationale behind the visit on Thursday of 25 members of Barcelona Global, the association that aims to make Barcelona a magnet for talent and economic activity.

The delegates enjoyed a viewing of IBEC’s video, a general presentation of the institute from director Josep Samitier, and then a short tour of the some of IBEC’s laboratories.

The visit was part of an initiative to bring Barcelona Global’s members to the leading research centers in the city that are contributing to its status as a global science hub. As well as visiting IBEC, the delegates also went to the Barcelona Supercomputing Center.

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11th Annual Conference of Biomedical Research Technology Platforms

The Spanish Platform for Nanomedicine (NanoMedSpain), managed by IBEC, is participating once again in the Annual Conference of Technological Platforms of Biomedical Research in Barcelona today and tomorrow.

This yearly conference, organised by the four national platforms – Innovative Medicines, Nanomedicine, Health Technology and Biotechnology Markets – presents the latest advances in -omics technology and digitalization in the health sector from the standpoint of biomedical research.

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BIST centres showcase their research at the Youth Mobile Festival

The seven BIST centres – including IBEC – have a stand at this year’s Youth Mobile Festival (YoMo), part of the Mobile World Congress that’s taking place this week.

The stand will feature different hands-on activities on different days, all of which will be based on the research being carried out in the BIST centres.

More than 15,000 youngsters are expected to pass through the festival, which is being held at La Farga in l’Hospitalet, during the festival’s run from today to Friday.

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City of Barcelona Award for Pere

This was the moment that IBEC group leader Pere Roca-Cusachs received the City of Barcelona Award for the life sciences from Barcelona mayor Ada Colau.

The ceremony took place last night in the city council’s Saló de Cent, where the twenty winners of this year’s prizes, now in their 17th edition, were congratulated by Ms. Colau and Culture Commissioner Joan Subirats.

The prestigious City of Barcelona awards recognize outstanding creativity and research carried out in Barcelona that contribute to culture and society in the city.

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Indian extravaganza kicks off new series of joint cultural events

Last Thursday evening saw the PCB’s Dolors Aleu room transformed into a riot of colour and sound when the Manipuri Dance Group from India took over the stage.

More than 120 people from the various organizations of the PCB enjoyed the spectacle of dance and music, which showcased six traditional Indian dances from the country’s northeastern Manipur region. Afterwards, everyone enjoyed some Indian food provided by the restaurant Zeeshan.

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Another successful Nano World Cancer Day

On Friday the IBEC-managed Spanish Nanotechnology Platform, NanoMed Spain, co-hosted the fifth edition of Nano World Cancer Day, a global initiative organized as part of World Cancer Day.

It’s the third year running that the platform has hosted the conference, which took place at the PCB and was opened by IBEC/NanoMed Spain’s Josep Samitier, who also gave a presentation about the platform.
The latest innovations in nanomedicine for cancer were presented and discussed in front of an audience of more than 90 researchers, clinicians, students and industry professionals, as well as journalists.

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Pere Roca-Cusachs wins City of Barcelona award

Pere Roca-Cusachs, group leader at IBEC and assistant professor at the University of Barcelona, has won the 2017 City of Barcelona Award for the life sciences.

The prize comes after the publication of his study in Cell last year, where he identified a mechanism by which tissue rigidity regulates cell survival and proliferation, as well as its implications in diseases such as cancer and liver and lung fibrosis.

The City of Barcelona Awards are granted by Barcelona City Council, and the jury – Patrick Aloy, Juan Valcárcel, Cristina Subidas, Elena Casacuberta, and Neus Agell – were unanimous in their choice of Pere for the prize.

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Joining forces with FEDER to collaborate on solutions for rare diseases

IBEC has signed a collaboration agreement with the Federación Española de Enfermedades Raras (FEDER), a non-profit organization that represents the three million people suffering from rare diseases throughout the country.

Rare diseases are those that affect fewer than 5 out of every 10,000 inhabitants. According to the WHO, there are about 7,000 such diseases affecting 7% of the world’s population, so altogether they affect a huge number of people – and they can appear at any stage of life. The agreement with IBEC will connect the institute with patients’ associations to develop projects together that have a direct application according to the needs of sufferers.

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Education award for IBEC’s outreach activities

IBEC has been awarded the “Segell de Qualitat Educativa” (seal of educative quality) by the Consell De Coordinació Pedagògica of Barcelona City Council’s Institute of Education, an educational network that includes 155 institutions and organizations that offer educational activities.

This recognition is of the quality of IBEC’s outreach activities that the institute carries out for school pupils, teachers, the general public, and many other audiences.

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IBEC project wins funding from the AECC

An IBEC group’s project was granted funding from the Fundación Científica de la Asociación Española Contra el Cáncer in their 2017 Ayudas LAB AECC call.

Nuria Montserrat’s group will work together with researchers from other Barcelona institutes and one of the city’s major hospitals on the project ‘Generation of Isogenic Models of Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma using CRISPR-engineered Kidney Organoids, for the identification of diagnostic biomarkers’. They will receive support over a three-year period from the AECC Scientific Foundation, whose ‘Ayudas LAB’ funds emerging groups to carry out projects in cancer that have obvious translational possibilities.

The project will develop a human model to study clear cell renal cancer, the most common type of kidney cancer. At present, there are no human models for this cancer, nor for the identification of early biomarkers, which would shed light on the molecular mechanisms of how the cancer starts and allow doctors to diagnose it and start treatments earlier.

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