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Awards of the UB Board of Trustees and Bosch i Gimpera Foundation to research and knowledge transfer

Journalist Dani Jiménez ran the ceremony.

Journalist Dani Jiménez ran the ceremony.

A moment during the conference by Guillem Anglada.

A moment during the conference by Guillem Anglada.

From left to right: Teresa Tarragó (Iproteos, Senén Vilaró Prize), the director of Bosch i Gimpera Foundation, Carme Verdager, the acting president of the Board of Trustees, Joan Corominas, the rector of the UB, Joan Elias, Maria Yubero (José Manuel Blecua Prize ), F. Javier Luque (Antoni Caparrós Prize ), Begoña Benito (Ramon Margalef Prize) and Narcís Prat (Antoni Caparrós Prize ).

From left to right: Teresa Tarragó (Iproteos, Senén Vilaró Prize), the director of Bosch i Gimpera Foundation, Carme Verdager, the acting president of the Board of Trustees, Joan Corominas, the rector of the UB, Joan Elias, Maria Yubero (José Manuel Blecua Prize ), F. Javier Luque (Antoni Caparrós Prize ), Begoña Benito (Ramon Margalef Prize) and Narcís Prat (Antoni Caparrós Prize ).

14/12/2017

Recerca

Yesterday the Aula Magna of the Historical Building of the UB held the ceremony for the Awards of the Board of Trustees and Bosch i Gimpera Foundation. In this ceremony, chaired by the rector of the University of Barcelona, Joan Elias, Professor Guillem Anglada Escudé, doctor in Physics by the University of Barcelona and lecturer of Astrophysics at the Queen Mary University of London, gave a conference. The journal Nature listed Anglada among the top ten most important scientists in 2016 for having led the team that discovered the nearest habitable planet.

 The rector of the UB, the acting president of the Board of Trustees, Joan Corominas, and the director of Bosch i Gimpera Foundation, Carme Verdager, awarded the prizes to this year’s awardees. The José Manuel Blecua Prize to the top published article in one distinguished journal in the field of humanities and social sciences coming from a doctoral thesis was awarded to Maria Yubero, whose research applies statistical analysis and computer science to analyse the evolution of archaeological sites from the Neolithic to the first Iron Age in the basin of Besòs River. This is an innovative and transdisciplinary research that uses the Monte Carlo simulation method, common in the field of statistics, to reduce uncertainty when trying to place and understand prehistorical sites chronologically.


The Ramon Margalef Prize to the top article published in a distinguished journal in the field of experimental and health sciences coming from a doctoral thesis was given to the researcher Begoña Benito for her groundbreaking research. In particular, this research opposes the previous concept that physical activity at any level can be healthy. This study was published in a high-impact journal, Circulation, and it shows how endurance activity during years could cause alterations in the cardiac structure and function, creating a substrate for arrhythmias.


The Antoni Caparrós Prize to the top project on knowledge transfer was awarded to the collaboration between UB researchers, led by the professor from the Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences F. Javier Luque, and the company Pharmacelera. In particular, the research group Computational Biology and Drug Design of the UB have worked on a methodology to create new molecular describers (that is, quantitative representations of the molecule features that allow a computational analysis and treatment). Pharmacelera, with these new molecular describers, created several tools, such as PharmQSAR and PharmScreen, softwares that ease the discovery of new drugs and which are already used by several pharmaceutical and biotechnological companies. These are new computer tools that ease the design of new drugs for the treatment of diseases such as cancer.


The Antoni Caparrós Prize was also given to RiuNet, a phone app on citizen science developed by the research group Freshwater Ecology and Management (FEM) of the UB. This interactive tool allows people knowing more about the water ecosystems and at the same time, evaluating their ecological quality and hydrological state in a simple, fun and rigorous way. Thanks to some indicators, such as the presence of a gallery forest, or lack of water flow, whether there is waste or not, or the bodies that live in the ecosystem, aspects such as hydro-morphological, biological and hydrological quality of rivers can be evaluated. These are key factors for the management of the ecosystems. This data is verified by the researchers and later accessible to experts and water managers such as the Catalan Water Agency (ACA) and the Júcar Hydrographic Confederation (CHX), but also any person who is interested in the project. RiuNet, coordinated by Narcís Prat, professor of Ecology at the UB, gets people to get closer to nature and learn about fluvial ecosystems, and it sets a relation between the administration and the citizens, and participation in the environmental decision-taking.


The awardee of the Senén Vilaró Prize to the top innovative company was Iproteos, a biotechnological spinoff of the University of Barcelona and the Institute of Biomedical Research (IRB Barcelona) that focus its activity on research and drug development for the treatment of uncovered medical needs. IPROTech technology represents the scientific core on which the spinoff carries its activity out. This technology allows researchers design future drugs based on peptides, called peptidometics, and enables researchers to speed up their research and get new molecules which can become future drugs. In 2016, biotechnology raised € 1,5 million in private capital. With this money, Iproteos reached the € 3 million in external capital with public and private investments. 

 


 

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