CONFERENCE SHOWED NEW ADVANCES IN BIOMEDICINE

SCIENTISTS FROM OUR UNIVERSITY AND FROM OTHER CHILEAN AND FOREIGN UNIVERSITIES SHOWED RESULTS FROM THE RESEARCH BEING DEVELOPED.



September 1, 2016

New knowledge and research on cancer, neurodegenerative diseases and cardiovascular pathologies was presented by twelve renowned national and foreign scientists, including researchers from our Academic Institution, during the First Conference on Biomedicine organized by the PhD program in Biomedical Sciences.

In the event - which took place in the Auditorium of the Clinical Simulation Center, Talca Campus - professors from the Department of Health Sciences and the School of Medicine participated, who presented their most recent academic work.

The activity opened with the speech of Professor Nelson Brown, director of the Center for Medical Research (CIM) of the School Of Medicine, who coordinated the first block of this seminar, which focused on various types of cancer.

On the occasion it was remarked that the Maule Region has the highest prevalence of gastric cancer in the country, that is why it is so important to elucidate the mechanisms involved in this disease.

Nelson Brown developed a project with support from the Innovation Fund for Competitiveness (FIC - R) to research why the town of Molina has the highest level of gastric cancer in Chile. Is seeks to determine if the locals have some intrinsic factor that increases their risk, if they become ill due to some environmental situation or to the sum of these or others reasons.

The director of the PhD program in biomedical sciences, Rodrigo Moore - main organizer of the conference - stressed that there was a good participation of scientists. "This type of activity produces collaborations among national and international researchers, which can then lead to awarding projects and the generation of new knowledge," he said.

For his part, together with highlighting the excellence of this event, the Dean of the Department of Health Sciences, Carlos Padilla, said that the scientific growth of the country is not only subjected to good creative ideas, but also needs the support of finance authorities to encourage more research and to the creation of a national institutionalilty to project that development.

"The Universidad de Talca is committed to the Maule Region and the country to provide highly trained scientists who contribute in a creative and consistent way to the solution of the big problems of this century", he said.

Mechanisms

Three academics from the Basic Biomedical Sciences Unit of the mentioned Department actively participated in the presentation and coordination of the neurodegenerative diseases and vascular biology sections.

Juan Carlos Tapia, recently incorporated to our Academic Institution coming from the University of Columbia, in United States, researches how to describe the mechanisms and the development of the neural circuits of the human body. The purpose is decoding changes of the nervous system as it progresses and develops. Also, his research could explain the origin of neurodegenerative diseases, like Alzheimer's disease.

Then, spoke Mónica Carrasco, who explores how to build new models that allows understanding the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis. To this end, thanks to a Fondecyt financing, the UTALCA possesses the first lab in the country to use in vitro human models to understand how neurodegenerative diseases start and progress.

In ELA, motor nerve cells (neurons) are subject to wear or death, and cease to send signals to the muscles, generating a growing inability to move extremities, body and even breathe. Later, Professor Daniel Gonzalez -also from the Basic Biomedical Sciences Unit - headed the vascular biology block. The researcher focuses on the research and development of a drug therapy that allows attenuating the damage caused to the heart by diabetes, using the potential of the Tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4), a molecule that is physiologically present in the body.

Cell Cycle

The plenary session was conducted by Professor Philip Hinds, from the school of Medicine at Tufts University, in Boston, United States, and was based on the development of this disease, opportunities for therapies and the risks that they present.

For his part, Andrew Quest, from the University of Chile, talked about tumors and their ability to create metastasis, i.e., extend the cell disorder towards other organs of the human body.

Gonzalo Yévenes, from the Universidad de Concepción, spoke about the development of new drugs against chronic pain. He mentioned, in addition, the molecular, cellular and neuronal mechanisms involved in this process, which are not yet fully clarified by science.

In addition, Carlos Escudero, from the Universidad del Bio-Bio, talked about the alterations present in pregnant women, one of which is the pre-eclampsia.



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