May 22, 2024


Imagination at work

Twinning boosts excellence in cancer research – Information Centre – Research & Innovation

If international locations cannot coach higher-excellent research personnel, they will battle to supply progressive most cancers treatment plans. An EU-funded task enabled 4 tutorial establishments to exchange personnel and share greatest procedures, resulting in several career advancements and effective research grant programs. These will reward citizens by way of the researchers’ growing capabilities to advance most cancers treatment plans.


© anttoniart #300552708, source: 2021

Inspite of important clinical innovations, most cancers remains a major health and fitness burden. In several international locations, the illness ranks as the 2nd most prevalent cause of dying, a actuality that proceeds to generate research into new diagnostic techniques and treatment plans.

“The progress of immunotherapies (treatment plans that assistance your immune system to fight most cancers) and vaccines are places of biotechnology wherever we have seen a excellent deal of work,” notes VACTRAIN task coordinator Maria Issagouliantis, lead researcher at Riga Stradins College (RSU) in Latvia. “There is a big volume of social, political and scientific need for development to be created in these places.”

A important problem nonetheless is making certain that slicing-edge research – as well as new therapeutic equipment – are adequately disseminated. This is significant, mainly because if understanding remains locked in a couple of labs and establishments, or a couple of international locations, then the probable gains cannot be fully realised. A absence of institutional knowledge also signifies that younger researchers typically come to feel compelled to complete their scientific tests overseas, having their knowledge with them.

Sharing understanding and encounter

The EU-funded VACTRAIN task sought to tackle this problem by making up institutional knowledge. “This wasn’t a research task as such,” points out Issagouliantis. “Our intention was not to establish and test new most cancers immunotherapies, or therapeutic vaccinations. Alternatively, we wished to provide together knowledge from various international locations, in get to stimulate greater healthcare performances, mostly in Latvia, but also elsewhere.”

To reach this, the EU-funded VACTRAIN task joined RSU, just one of Latvia’s leading biomedicine and biotechnology centres, with other establishments across Europe. “The college offers big research probable and clinical knowledge,” adds Issagouliantis. “This created RSU an excellent prospect for twinning.”

For the duration of the task, connections were created with two internationally renowned research establishments – the Section of Microbiology, Tumour and Mobile Biology at the Karolinska Institute (KI) in Sweden, and the Section of Normal Biophysics at the College of Lodz in Poland.

“Both represent centres of excellence in the style and design, screening and scientific programs of a huge course of immunotherapeutics,” suggests Issagouliantis. The consortium was complemented by the Kavetsky Institute of Experimental Pathology, Oncology and Radiobiology in Ukraine (KIEPOR). “Altogether, the twinning work united 4 partners,” points out Issagouliantis. “Links in between these establishments were solid by way of workshops, laboratory courses and considerable personnel exchanges.”

Selling research knowledge

This sharing of encounters and greatest procedures assisted to create up institutional knowledge, inspiring progressive adhere to-up initiatives. RSU for example has shaped a taskforce to establish modern day nanomedicines, which has absent on to get essential research grants from the Latvian Council of Science.

In addition, a exclusive cross-border research network involving trainees and researchers from all 4 spouse establishments has been released, to form a form of nanomedicine progress chain. The network has effectively competed for research grants on the style and design and screening of DNA-dependent nanomedicines that focus on most cancers.

“I imagine that the influence of this task can be calculated by the actuality that 3 worldwide grants have been received by consortia involving VACTRAIN users,” suggests Issagouliantis. “VACTRAIN has assisted to lay the groundwork for the progress of highly developed research in Latvia.”

Specifically a outcome of the twinning task, just one senior researcher been given their initial European grant, for a task devoted to creating nanomedicines. Two postgraduates who labored on the task are at present finishing their PhD scientific tests in the subject of most cancers, with completion predicted in 2021.

“All this knowledge will assistance us to coach and continue to keep hold of highly experienced experts in the long term,” notes Issagouliantis. “This is essential for the progress and health and fitness of our country. Of the 8 younger trainees who participated in the task, only just one has remaining to proceed their scientific tests overseas. Furnishing career opportunities signifies we can retain knowledge.”

Finally, development can also be seen in Issagouliantis’ personal career development. “I was promoted to the place of leading scientist at RSU in 2018, which was renewed in 2020,” she concludes. “I also been given a 2-calendar year grant for research into immunotherapy from the Latvian Science Fund for 2018-2020.”