Bioengineering contributes to new advances against childhood cancer

IBEC contributes to elucidate how the rigidity of the tumor extracellular matrix affects the aggressiveness of neuroblastoma, a cancerous tumor that affects mainly children. This opens the door to generate more accurate models to predict tumor development in patients and to work in the design of new treatments.

Neuroblastoma is the most frequent malignant tumor in the first year of life. It is caused by a genetic mutation from immature nerve cells (neuroblasts) that the fetus produces as part of its development process.

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Researchers at IBEC help identifying a drug in clinical phase that blocks the effects of SARS-Co-V2

IBEC researchers led by ICREA Research Professor Núria Montserrat, together with international collaborators, have identified a drug capable of blocking the effects of the SARS-Co-V2 virus, the origin of the Coronavirus 2019 disease.

The treatment, which can be tested on two hundred Covid-19 patients as of today, has proven effective in mini-kidneys generated from human stem cells. Using hese organoids generated by bioengineering techniques, it has been deciphered how SARS-Co-V2 interacts and infects human kidney cells.

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IBEC researchers develop a model to design precision nanomedicine

Researchers at Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) have proposed a model that gives important insights into how nanoparticles interact with cells, virus, bacteria or proteins, among others.

The findings provide a very powerful tool to design personalized nanomedicines, since allow the scientists to create nanoparticles tailor-made for each patient.

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IBEC participates in an international study to stop coronavirus contagion

Researchers at the Institute of Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) led by Professor ICREA Núria Montserrat are studying the role of the receptor ‘Angiotensin converting enzyme’ (ACE2), one of the pathways that the SARS-Co-V2 virus uses to enter our body.

To do this, experts use mini-kidneys, as well as other cell cultures such as cardiac organoids. The goal is to exploit these mini-organs to better understand how the virus works.

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Researchers at IBEC provide new insights on how to treat chronic infections

Researchers at Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) have managed to recreate the coculture conditions and environmental requisites that would allow the simultaneous and stable growth of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus, two major pathogens commonly found growing together in intricate biofilms in disease-affected lungs or wounds.

Most chronic infections occur due to the inherent capacity of some bacterial pathogens to grow in biofilms. Biofilm-associated infections, which have become a critical worldwide threat, have historically been treated as single-species events.

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Identified a new repairing mechanism of the peripheral nervous system by applyting bioengineering techniques

The Molecular and cellular neurobiotechnology group with the collaboration of the Nanobioengineering group, both of them at IBEC, have applied a new light-stimulated technique to modulate muscular activity and stimulate cell regeneration of the peripheral nervous system.

Thanks to this research they have discovered that muscle activity can activate the neurons and accelerate their regeneration after an injury.

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Researchers at IBEC track how pathogens adapt to oxygen changes

The Bacterial Infections: Antimicrobial Therapies group at IBEC, led by Eduard Torrents, has developed a system capable of investigating how pathogens adapt to oxygen changes.

Using this technique, they have discovered that bacteria E. coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa can adapt to environmental changes through different mechanisms, which opens the door to better knowledge and treatment of infections.

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New advances in the improvement of the design of drugs against glial globular tauopathy

José Antonio del Río, principal investigator at the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) together with Dr. Isidre Ferrer from Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBELL) led a study where they have unraveled that the pathology shown by patients with Globular Glial Tauopathy is due to the generation of harmful protein deposits for neurons and glial cells.

Tauopathies are characterized by the accumulation of phosphorylated tau protein, that associates with phosphate groups.

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A research team develop biotransistors able to hear small beats of live

Researchers at IBEC and ICMAB develop a flexible, cheap and biocompatible transistor platform able to record an electrocardiogram of cells and micro-tissues during long periods of time.

The platform, based on organic transistor technology (EGOFET), can also measure the effect of drugs on beating cells, as cardiomyocytes, opening the door to several applications such as implantable devices for health.

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IBEC bioengineers contribute to a heart implant

A group from the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) led by Daniel Navajas contributes to an operation designed to repair the heart tissue of a 70-year-old patient who had suffered a heart attack. This was made possible by the creation of a bioimplant enriched with stem cells. The operation is the result of the joint work of scientists, doctors and engineers over more than ten years.

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