en News - BIOINFORMATICS BARCELONA News Fri, 22 Jan 2021 14:12:56 +0000 Fri, 22 Jan 2021 14:12:56 +0000 Houdini 2 (http://houdini.antaviana.cat/) http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news BIB and The Bankia Foundation renovate SANEC-BIB Program

In the framework of the Professional Training in Web Application Development (Bioinformatics profile, DAW-BIO), Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB) and The Bankia Foundation have renewed the agreement for the continuation of the SANEC-BIB Program in the period 2021-2022.

BIB and The Bankia Foundation, in collaboration with the Department of Education, have been running the SANEC-BIB Program since 2018, providing financial support for DAW-BIO student reception centers in Dual training (where the student stays in more than 1,000 hours of internship at the corresponding center).

BIB also like to confirm that the call to host DAW-BIO trainees and choosing to benefit from these grants will open soon.

For further information, you can send an email to coordination@bioinformatics.eu.

Fri, 22 Jan 2021 14:12:56 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/171/bib-and-the-bankia-foundation-renovate-sanec-bib-program http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/171 0
The FDA joined the Xavier AI World Team The FDA, the US agency responsible for protecting the public health by ensuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, has joined the Collaborative Community "Xavier AI World Team." This is the same group that Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB) was recently invited to participate in through Dr. Josep LLuis Arcos BIB's presence. This is exciting news for the bioinformatics community due to the positive impact of FDA involvement on bioinformatics research and the innovation results shared with the Xavier AI World Team.

Wed, 30 Sep 2020 13:08:34 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/169/the-fda-joined-the-xavier-ai-world-team http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/169 0
Phylloxera genome that took over European vineyards in the 19th century, deciphered

The genome of the phylloxera, an insect that caused plagues that ended with the European vineyards in the 19th century, has been deciphered by an international team in which the experts Julio Rozas and Alejandro Sánchez-Gracia, from the Faculty of Biology and the Biodiversity Research Institute of the UB (IRBio) take part, together with other members from the platform Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB).


The study, published in the journal BMC Biology, affirms the plague comes from North America and likely from wild populations located over the upper course of the Mississippi River. The conclusions of the study helped to reconstruct the biological invasion that unchained mortal plagues on the European vineyards in the 19th century and to advance in the strategies to improve the productivity in viticulture.


The sequencing of the new genome has been promoted by the international consortium -more than seventy experts from eight countries worldwide- created in 2011 and led by the French National Research Institute for Agriculture (INRAE). The study counts on the technical support of the INRAE-BIPAA platform, which enabled the access to genomic resources on insects associated with agricultural ecosystems.


The experts Silvia Hinojosa-Alvarez, Jose F. Sánchez-Herrero, Paula Escuer and Pablo Librado take part in the UB-IRBio team as well. The team focused its scientific contribution in the genomic annotation and analysis of several families of genes of the olfactory system of the phylloxera. The general study, led by researchers François Delmotte and Denis Tagu (INRAE), counts on the participation of the experts from the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG) and UPF, apart from the Science Park of the University of Valencia. 


Phylloxera: from Mississippi riverbanks to the French vineyards


The grape phylloxera (Daktulosphaira vitifoliae) is a hemipteran insect from the family Phylloxeridae, which feeds from the sap of the roots in the vineyards. Described for the first time in 1854 by the entomologist Asa Fitch in the United States, which originated the first infection outbreaks in France in 1863 until it was identified in 1868 by Bazille, Planchon and Sahut, members of the Chambre d'Agriculture de l'Hérault in Montpellier.


The intense trade of vines between the United States and Europe could have been the open doors for the insect, which spread widely around France -the most affected country by this plague-, and other European areas. 


A new genic family with more than 2,700 genes


The DNA nuclear genomic analyses of the phylloxera reveal the existence of the largest genic family ever identified with a genome -with about 2,700 genes, when the average does not go over 200-, which would account for a 10% of the genome of this insect.


Researchers believe these genes are essential for the interaction between the phylloxera and the vineyard: they code the small secreted proteins -known as effectors- that could take part in the deactivation of the basic defenses of the plant. In the region of origin, the coevolution between the plant and the plague could have enabled the vineyards to be resistant to the insect. However, the vineyards in Europe did not have such a defense system to fight the threat of the new plague and the effectors.


The study has worked on sample campaigns of the plague in Europe and the United States, and it affirms the phylloxera that invaded Europe comes from the species Vitis riparia, a wild type from American vineyards. "As expected, the study reveals there is a great genetic variability among the native species of D. vitifoliae compared to the European strains. In particular, the comparison of these patterns of genetic variability is what enabled researchers to trace the geographical routes of the biological invasion", note the experts Julio Rozas and Alejandro Sánchez-Gracia, heads of the Research Group on Evolutionary Genomics and Bioinformatics UB-IRBio. 


From basic research to an improvement of wine production


Promoting knowledge on basic research is the most direct ccontribution of the studies that finish with genomic sequencing of a new species. "These new findings provide many biological information and basic knowledge on the evolution of insects -specially the aphids-, and about the genetics and selection of roots of those phylloxera-resistant plants", notes Professor Julio Rozas.


From an applied field, the genomic data of the new study will enable the promotion of genetic improvement in the practice of viticulture. Therefore, a better knowledge of the evolution and action mechanisms of the new family of effector genes will help design strategies to block the action through interventions on the plant or the parasite.


"The new study is an advance in our understanding of biological invasions and the potentially disastrous consequences on agriculture, and therefore, on the important social and economic sectors", notes researcher Alejandro Sánchez-Gracia.


Decipgering the genome of living beings


The Research Group on Evolutionary Genomics and Bioinformatics UB-IRBio has a significative experience in international studies which allowed them to decipher the genome of several organisms of scientific interest. Therefore, they are the co-authors of the genetic sequencing of the genome of the spider Dysdera sylvatica Schmidt 1981 -an endemic species of the Canary Island forests- (GigaScience, 2019); the plant varieties of the avocado Persea Americana var. drymifolia and Persea Americana Mill. Cv. Hass (Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 2019); the tick Ixodes scapular, of great interest in public and veterinary health (Nature Communications, 2016); the myriapod Strigamia maritima, a common centipede in the coasts of northern Europe (PLOS Biology, 2014), and the coffee plant Coffea canephora (Science, 2014). 


In the field of insect genomics, they also took part in the decipherment of the pea aphid genome (Acyrthosiphon pisum),  -a parasite of legume plants that causes serious agricultural plagues-, published in the journal PLoS Biology  in 2010 by an international consortium that gave way to the scientific platform to decipher the genome of the phylloxera.


Tue, 11 Aug 2020 09:48:40 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/167/phylloxera-genome-that-took-over-european-vineyards-in-the-19th-century-deciphered http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/167 0
Debate on The COVID-19 and its consequences

It is a series of debates on current and most interesting topics, in which personalities from different parts of the world participate with the aim to share and disseminate knowledge.

The first of the debates, to be held on the 12th, is titled "The Covid-19 and its health and social implications" and will count with the following speakers:

Ms. Rosalía Arteaga -  Lawyer, writer, former president of Ecuador

Ms. Maria Àngels Calvo  Pharmaceutical and veterinary, professor of microbiology

Mr. Manuel Carballo Epidemiologist and psychologist

Mr. José Becerra Epidemiologist doctor

Mr. LLuís Serra: Doctor. Professor of Public Health at the ULPGC

Mr. José Ramon Calvo Doctor. Strategic advisor at the BSC-CNS

Registration and confirmation through this link.

Limited places.

Registered people will receive a link to connect from 15 minutes before the start time.

Wed, 30 Sep 2020 13:05:09 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/165/debate-on-the-covid-19-and-its-consequences http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/165 0
BIB invited at the AI World Team

Dr. Josep Lluis Arcos, researcher at the Artificial Intelligence Research Institute (IIIA-CSIC), will be the leading representative of the BIB within the AI World Team community.

The aim will be to promote the opportunities and initiatives of the AI World Team towards the BIB bioinformatics community as strategic in the Artificial Intelligence subject in the biomedicine.

Fri, 08 May 2020 10:15:32 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/163/bib-invited-at-the-ai-world-team http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/163 0
"BioS - Digital skills on Computational Biology for Health Professionals": New article in the Faseb Journal

The 4emedicine: Emergency, Environmental, Electronics and Extreme medicine. Overview of the available and on‐going related controlled trials with a survey on the overlap areas and on the use of bioinformatics.

This article is written by Guglielmo Trovato, MD, Professor of Medicine, the EMA Director for Media, e-learning and e-medicine.

Prof. Trovato is actively working, in his medical and academic practice, now dealing with medical and research topics related to the current COVID-19 outbreak, also with active campaigns of dissemination using all the EMA social media.

Information about "BioS - Digital skills on Computational Biology for Health Professionals": https://www.bios-project.eu/site/es/index.html

Thu, 07 May 2020 15:33:46 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/161/bios-digital-skills-on-computational-biology-for-health-professionals-new-article-in-the-faseb-journal http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/161 0
Bioinformatics is revolutionizing biology

Ana Ripoll interviewed in El Periodico de Catalunya.

In this interview, she explains why Bioinformatics emerges as a key discipline in the field of health to diagnose and find the best treatment.

Mon, 04 May 2020 15:55:28 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/159/bioinformatics-is-revolutionizing-biology http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/159 0
COVID-19: EU Extraordinary Collaboration Call

The purpose of this call is to facilitate the standardization of this data in order to accelerate the extraction of evidence that allows to improve the clinical management of coronavirus-infected patients, anticipate their evolution and extend the effectiveness and safety of different treatments. For this purpose, the project has a strategy of mass standardization and analysis of data that acts remotely and allows the data to never leave the local environment where they are located.

The project will fund the participating institutions with a sub-grant of between €30,000 and €50,000, depending on the degree of complexity of the data they can offer.

The call for collaboration, proposed in an agile working format in order to be able to provide the first results based on data from hundreds of thousands of COVID-19 infected, will remain open from 16th April to 14th May 2020.

For more information you can access the following LINK

Fri, 17 Apr 2020 10:48:58 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/157/covid-19-eu-extraordinary-collaboration-call http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/157 0
New biocompatible nanoparticles for breast cancer therapy

According to data from the Spanish Association against Cancer (AECC) observatory, breast cancer is the second most common type of cancer in Spain with 33,307 new cases in 2019. The number of deceased has reached 6,689 this year. Many research groups are exploring new ways to fight against this disease.

Dasatinib, an FDA-approved compound for the treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia, has become a potential candidate for the treatment of other cancers. It has been recently demonstrated that it could have a relevant role in breast cancer therapy. However, the solubility of this compound is extremely low, leading to poor absorption by the organism. Thus, the administration of a higher dosage is needed in order to obtain a better effect.

An alternative solution to enhance its therapeutic effect is the development of polymeric nanoparticles for a sustained and controlled delivery of the drug.

Researchers from the University of Castilla La Mancha, the ALBA Synchrotron, the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) and the San Carlos Clinic Hospital in Madrid have used the polymer poly(cyclohexene phthalate), named also CHO/PA, to synthesize the nanoparticles to encapsulate the drug.

Thanks to the synchrotron light this team has analyzed and compared the structure between the polymer in bulk and in the form of nanoparticles. "Using synchrotron light techniques, such as the small-angle and wide-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS and WAXS), we can study the structure of the polymer to check if it changes its properties when forming the nanoparticles", Eduardo Solano, scientific of the ALBA Synchrotron's NCD-SWEET beamline, states.

The results demonstrate that the polymer maintains its properties when forming the nanoparticles. Moreover, the research has proved that CHO/PA is a biodegradable, non-toxic and blood compatible polymer. "Compared to other polymers, CHO/PA nanoparticles show a slower sustained release of Dasatinib. This means a potential increase of the drug's efficacy", says Carlos Alonso, members of the Castilla La Mancha University's research team.

"The next step is to study other compounds and investigate the efficacy of this particular one using in vivo models" adds Iván Bravo, also a member of the aforementioned University, "Which would improve its potential future use in patients" concludes Dr. Alberto Ocaña, an oncologist from the Hospital Clínico San Carlos in Madrid.


Up, 2D SAXS and WAXS patterns of the CHO/PA nanoparticles recorded at NCD-SWEET beamline, which confirm the lack of well-structured mesophase. Down, the research team at the NCD-SWEET beamline.

Smaller size for bigger results

Nanoparticles are particles with a size ranging between 1 and 100 nanometers (nm) (1 nanometer is the one thousand millionth part of a meter or 10-9 m). These units have the potential of revolutionizing medicine, since their characteristics make them ideal for encapsulating drugs extending their degradation time inside the body, and helping to make a targeted delivery, reducing toxicity and side effects.

Polymeric nanoparticles are considered one of the most promising drug delivery systems for use in oncology. This is due to the fact that they are made out of polymers. Polymers are macromolecules composed of long chains with many repeated subunits, called monomers. These materials are usually biodegradable and biocompatible and their release profiles can be modulated by the polymeric structure itself.

Reference: Enrique Niza, Cristina Nieto-Jiménez, María del Mar Noblejas-López, Iván Bravo, José Antonio Castro-Osma, Felipe de la Cruz-Martínez, Marc Martínez de Sarasa Buchaca, Daniel Hermida-Merino, Eduardo Solano, Alberto Ocaña, Carlos Alonso-Moreno. Poly(Cyclohexene Phthalate) Nanoparticles for Controlled Dasatinib Delivery in Breast Cancer Therapy. Nanomaterials 2019, 9, 1208. DOI: 10.3390/nano9091208.

Thu, 28 Nov 2019 14:22:33 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/153/new-biocompatible-nanoparticles-for-breast-cancer-therapy http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/153 0
Conference The opportunity for Big Data and Artificial Intelligence in clinical decision-making and health evaluation. Barcelona The Conference "The opportunity for Big Data and Artificial Intelligence in clinical decision-making and health evaluation" held in Barcelona, on November 6th, 2019, was organized by Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB), the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences of the University of Barcelona (UB) and professional societies.

Dr Ana Ripoll, President at BIB, participated in the opening conference "Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB): a strategic ecosystem in health as a 21st century vision of societies". Other representatives, members and collaborators at BIB participated in the following sessions: "Scientific and technical aspects in healthcare practice", "Ethical, social and legal aspects", and "The application of Big Data and Artificial Intelligence in clinical research and evaluation in Health".

Mon, 24 Feb 2020 16:22:06 +0000 http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/151/conference-the-opportunity-for-big-data-and-artificial-intelligence-in-clinical-decision-making-and-health-evaluation-barcelona http://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/151 0