en News - BIOINFORMATICS BARCELONA News Sat, 24 Sep 2022 15:12:44 +0000 Sat, 24 Sep 2022 15:12:44 +0000 Houdini 2 (https://houdini.antaviana.cat/) https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news Barcelona Shapes the Future of Medicine

Barcelona's Science Museum - CosmoCaixa hosted the Global Alliance for Genomics & Health (GA4GH) 10th Plenary Meeting on the 22nd and 23rd of September. During these two days, genomics and health experts from all over the world have agreed on the importance of promoting a more humane medicine by means of state of the art technology.

The congress gathered 250 attendees, and offered 36 speakers and 23 panels and workshops which focused on the challenges posed by the generation, management and analysis of large amounts of genomic and clinical data. Topics ranged from the relevance of genomics in sequencing and tracing SARS-CoV-2, to the future application of personalized treatments for diabetes or cancer patients.

GA4GH is an international consortium leading the promotion of technical standards and policy frameworks which aim to break down the current barriers to biomedical data sharing, in order to advance research and facilitate implementation. Peter Goodhand, founder and CEO of GA4GH, was very satisfied with the outcome of the first presential plenary after the pandemic: "It is great to be back in person, and people have said we couldn't have chosen a better place: Barcelona has made us very much feel at home".

Goodhand also highlighted the role of the Catalan capital as a genomic research hub that places Spain among the top five contributors to GA4GH's task. Therefore, he thanked Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB) for making this congress possible. This non-profit association comprises 70 public and private institutions dedicated to research in biology and computer science with three common goals: knowledge generation, research advances and industrial competitiveness.

Dr. Ana Ripoll, President of BIB, shared Goodhand's enthusiasm: "Hosting this meeting is an opportunity to visualize what is being done worldwide, and learning firsthand the latest advances towards a global and personalized healthcare". Ripoll trusts that technology will humanize medicine by helping health professionals with decision-making so they can dedicate more time to patients.

The conference ended with a guest star, Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist at the World Health Organization. Swaminathan insisted on the need of implementing genomic research on a global scale, also in low and middle income countries, but always in a responsible way that respects standards and policies as the ones GA4GH promotes.

San Francisco will take over hosting next year's GA4GH's Plenary Meeting, with the mission to continue guiding technology towards a healthcare model that really serves people.

Sat, 24 Sep 2022 15:12:44 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/225/barcelona-shapes-the-future-of-medicine https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/225 0
BIB congratulates all the participants and thanks entities and universities for the Datathon "Data4Health"

Last week, Dedalus in collaboration with Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB) celebrated successfully, the first edition of the Datathon, "Data4Health". The winner team named "Ebm FC" of the Datathon Digital Health "Data4Health" created an assistant to identify the experience and services offered at the first medical visit of any patient. The team members are Rubén Cuervo, Eduard Ruiz and Elliot González.

The competition addresses students of different levels, until PhD. Furthermore, it groups by different fields as the programation, analysis and data architectura as well as Bioinformatics, Artificial Intelligence or Big Data. The second prize went to the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona team "DATAERS" which consist in 4 members, Roger Vera, Abel Espin, Sergi Garriga and Raúl Yusef Dalgamoni. Last but not least, Aina Marti, Alba Malagón and Adria Cabello, members of the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya "3xa" team, won the third prize.

From BIB we want to congratulate all the participants and thank all the entities and universities that have made the project possible. Especially all the institutions that have approached the initiative to students, encouraging them to participate. We will work to make it the first edition of many others.

Fri, 08 Jul 2022 13:02:30 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/221/bib-congratulates-all-the-participants-and-thanks-entities-and-universities-for-the-datathon-data4health https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/221 0
UB team validates a new method for assessing the antimicrobial efficacy of domestic cleaning products

Environmental awareness in society is changing household laundry habits, where the use of less bleach and lower temperatures during washing machine cycles is encouraged. In this context, disinfectants added to detergents have become an essential factor to compensate for these new habits and to prevent the transmission of bacteria, fungi and viruses in the house, as well as to control the level of odour-causing micro-organisms on clothes.

These products must be evaluated according to standardised methods, but the current European regulations only apply to clinical settings and are restricted to the main wash cycle. Experts from the Biost3 Research Group, led by Antoni Monleón, lecturer in the Department of Genetics, Microbiology and Statistics of the University of Barcelona, have statistically validated a new method for assessing the antimicrobial efficacy of detergents and textile additives in domestic environments. The results reveal the validity of the new protocol, which has been presented to the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) requesting it to become the European standard.

"It is very difficult to make sure that a product works and that is a good disinfectant. We work with micro-organisms and the results of the efficacy evaluation can be very variable depending on the method, the washing machine, the temperature and so on. That is why it is very important to publish a standardised protocol at the European level so that manufacturers of household textile disinfectants can demonstrate the efficacy of their products with a methodology that is much closer to the real situation at home", says Antoni Monleón, a member of the Research Group on Biostatistics and Bioinformatics (GRBIO) integrated in the Bioinformatics Barcelona Association (BIB).

The study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, has been carried out in collaboration with CEN technical committee member Michelle Cavalleri and an international consortium of industrial and testing laboratories comprising AC Marca, Arxada, Eurofins Biolab SRL, Henkel AG & Co KGaA, Hohenstein Laboratories GmbH & Co. KG, Hochschule Niederrhein, FB textile-u Bekleidungs-technick, and Thor Especialidades S. A. AC Marca researchers Ana Costan and Nuria Piedra have coordinated the development of the standard, the experimental phase and the data collection.

International ring trial to simulate domestic washing conditions

In response to the gap in the EU standards, the consortium organised an international ring trial to evaluate the robustness of a new method specifically designed to test the efficacy of detergents against micro-organisms in a domestic environment. The seven participating laboratories were equipped with five laboratory-scale devices simulating domestic washing machines, in which seven parameters -including the removal of Escherichia coli or Staphylococcus aureus micro-organisms adhering to fabrics- were evaluated at different levels of active substance and at different temperatures.

"The evaluation of disinfectant efficacy in clothing is a complex process that involves many variables and the method must allow to control aspects such as temperature, contact time, or the mechanical and chemical effect separately, so that the reproducibility is more consistent", notes Antoni Monleón.

Robust and reproducible method

This evaluation methodology not only simulates domestic laundry processes, but must be applicable as a standard procedure throughout the sector and, therefore, it must be a robust and reproducible method. "Robustness -says Antoni Monleón- refers to a statistical concept as a measure of the method's ability not to be affected by small but deliberate variations in the experiment, such as using different washing machines or different temperatures".

"On the other hand -the researcher continues- repeatability means that if you use the same method with the same procedure in another laboratory, you should get a similar result".

The task of the researchers from the Biost3 research group consisted on validating the method from a statistical point of view and verifying the robustness of the experiments carried out in the different laboratories. With this aim, they have used statistical methods to "detect highly variable values in the experiments, an analysis of strange values for when many variables are taken into account, and graphic methods that allow the joint variability of different experimental groups to be checked", says the researcher.

The results of the research have shown that the method was robust to small variations in the experiment, so the repeatability of the experiment, and of the new method, was satisfactory.

Moreover, they created a new library -a programme that allows very fast calculations- in R language called Diagnobatch, which can be used in the industrial environment.

More realistic and cost-effective testing

The new method also reproduces domestic washing conditions more realistically compared to the current protocol, where antimicrobials are tested in industrial washing machines with markedly different characteristics. "Furthermore -says Monleón- previous studies indicate that a lab-scale device is not significantly different from a domestic washing machine, but has an important advantage in terms of reproducibility and repeatability.

This new methodology also improves capacity and costs over the current protocol, in which antimicrobial efficacy must be tested separately and only one micro-organism per washing machine test must be evaluated. "The new protocol allows up to 20 tests to be run simultaneously (depending on the lab-scale device) and all microorganisms are tested in the same test", says the researcher.

Pending approval by the European regulator

With these promising results, the new methodology has been sent for consultation to the European Committee for Standardisation in order to propose it as a new European standard. "In the mid-term -concludes Monleón-,when the standard is approved by CEN, all textile disinfectants for the domestic environment to be registered will have to demonstrate their efficacy following this protocol, whose validity and robustness has been demonstrated by our team".


Wed, 06 Jul 2022 09:27:43 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/219/ub-team-validates-a-new-method-for-assessing-the-antimicrobial-efficacy-of-domestic-cleaning-products https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/219 0
Technical Days Report: BIB Partners boost bioinformatics to the vocational education and training

The BSC, the IRTA and the Institute of Research Sant Joan de Déu (SJD) visit the vocational education and training centers which offer the Web Application Design High Degree - Profile in Bioinformatics (DAW-BIO) to inspire students in the Technical Days

The three centres explained to students the role of Bioinformatics in the world of health. Visits differed depending on the specialization of each center in which they performed their professional work.

Sant Joan de Déu (SJD)

Dr. Joan Maynou, physicist and bioinformatic on the Department of Genetics at the Hospital Sant Joan de Déu and Arnau Valls, telecommunications engineer and researcher at the Research and Innovation Department of the Institute of Sant Joan de Déu, visited the students of the Institut La Guineueta who explained the role of bioinformists in the world of health and in particular in our center, through work experience and some projects.

Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA)

For his part, Marc Viñas Canals, researcher of the IRTA Biosystems Support program, and responsible for the transverse action of Microbioma of the same institution, gave two talks (6 and 7 April) to students of the higher formative cycle of "Web Application Design in Bioinformatics, in the high schools of La Provençana (Hospitalet de Llobregat) and La Ferreria (Montcada).

During the talks, they presented examples of how to study the sustainability of the agrosystems, focusing on the study of complex microbial communities on soils of different crops (vine and rice) and on different environmental bioprocesses, with particular emphasis on the necessary computer tools, which are commonly used, for such studies. Speakers also shown the different existing research lines in IRTA programs, and the different used computer tools. Because of this first contact, opportunities may arise for different students in the formative cycle to make internships in the IRTA, as well as to extend the teaching curriculum that is provided in the same cycle.

Barcelona Supercomputing Centre (BSC)

The workshop at INS Provençana started with Eva Alloza, training coordinator, introducing the BSC and its supercomputing facilities, the Spanish National Bioinformatics Institute (INB) and its role as the Spanish node of ELIXIR, the pan-European Infrastructure of Life Sciences Data. As a software engineer, Albert Hornos explained two COVID-19-related data portals: the ongoing national project Registro ISCIII COVID-19 and the COVID-19 Data Portal Spain, which is aligned with European efforts to support data sharing. Both are developed and maintained by the INB coordination node, and he focused on the technical side, explaining the requirements, technologies and methodology used.

Current students and faculty were exposed to real-life projects and technologies through interactive challenges. Students not only got to know about projects where former FCT and FP Dual students had been working but also learnt about the experiences of the former student Esther Vendrell. The workshop closed with a vivid conversation where students could ask questions about the prospects of their professional profile and the technical and soft skills and competencies required for web application developer positions in bioinformatics.



Mon, 05 Sep 2022 10:19:57 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/217/technical-days-report-bib-partners-boost-bioinformatics-to-the-vocational-education-and-training https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/217 0
Barcelona will host the 10th Plenary Meeting of the GA4GH

Barcelona will host the 10th Plenary Meeting of the Global Alliance for Genomics and Health (GA4GH), co-organized with Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB), on September 22 and 23 of this year

The GA4GH, with more than 600 health organizations in more than 90 countries, has become one of the world references for protocols and standards in clinical genomics. During this event, technical, methodological and ethical-legal frameworks will be discussed and agreed for the secure exchange of data between centers and countries.

The 10th Plenary Meeting will have the participation of leading institutions and organizations in biomedical and health research from around the world.

See the oficial page for registration

Wed, 29 Jun 2022 08:19:19 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/215/barcelona-will-host-the-10th-plenary-meeting-of-the-ga4gh https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/215 0
Seven Catalan universities and BIB launch the first official Master's Degree in Biomedical Data Sciences in Europe

It is promoted by Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB) and coordinated by the Universitat Rovira i Virgili (URV) with the participation of the universities of Barcelona (UB), Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), Lleida (UdL), from Girona (UdG) and Vic-Central de Catalunya (UVic -UCC) and the collaboration of Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC). It is also linked to medical institutions, hospitals and research infrastructures and has the support of Amgen, a leading American biotechnology company in advanced treatments.

It is the first online postgraduate program in Europe to offer training in data science in the specific field of biomedicine.

It is an official degree, with a public price, lasting two years and with an international vision, as it will be taught entirely in English.

You will find the Press Notes below in English, Catalan and Spanish.

Thu, 07 Apr 2022 09:12:20 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/213/seven-catalan-universities-and-bib-launch-the-first-official-master-s-degree-in-biomedical-data-sciences-in-europe https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/213 0
CaixaBank Dualiza launches a VT campaign with testimonials and collaborator entities

CaixaBank Dualiza has launched a VET support campaign to mark the start of the guidance period in which many students decide their academic future for the next academic year.

It seeks to tell the professional development of three students from different vocational training courses in three key sectors of our country: the agricultural sector, the renewable energy, and health, as a way to show the importance of the technician in three areas where its presence is essential to ensure future development.

To carry it out, real protagonists have been taken who have participated in some of the programs promoted by CaixaBank Dualiza in collaboration with almost 40 entities, BIB included.

Support for the dissemination and promotion of vocational training is part of the spirit of CaixaBank Dualiza, from the conviction that greater support for training contributes to generating a more cohesive society.

Currently, more than 41% of job offers are for VET graduates as opposed to 33% for university graduates, according to an Adecco report.

The trend is for the need for mid-level and higher education technicians to continue to increase in the coming years, according to the European Commission.

Find attached the press note of this campaign below.

Mon, 07 Mar 2022 10:34:10 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/211/caixabank-dualiza-launches-a-vt-campaign-with-testimonials-and-collaborator-entities https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/211 0
GENOMCORE receives Next Generation funds in the largest funded AI project for the personalized treatment of metastatic cancer

The company GENOMCORE S.L., a partner of Bioinformatics Barcelona, announces its participation in the Big Data and Artificial Intelligence project DIPCAN (Digitization and comprehensive management of personalized medicine). This project, granted by the Secretaría de Estado de Digitalización e Inteligencia Artificial (SEDIA), is endowed with funding from the Next Generation EU program, which will cover approximately 7.5 million euros of the consortium's global budget (10,692,931 euros), of which GENOMCORE will receive 919,610.22 euros.

DIPCAN aims to change clinical practice in the area of oncology, betting on personalized medicine, which enables personalized treatment therapies for each patient aimed at the molecular alterations found. For this, an Artificial Intelligence system will be developed based on the integration of different clinical, radiomic, histopathological and genetic data sources from a total of 2000 patients with metastatic cancer in Spain.

The project will begin attracting patients in March thanks to the granting of European Funds within the Next Generation EU program, through the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Digital Transformation, as part of a consortium between Genomcore, the MD Anderson Foundation, Eurofins-Megalab, Artelnics, Pangaea Oncology, Quibim and Atrys Health.

Find the press note of GENOMCORE attached below

Wed, 02 Mar 2022 08:28:14 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/209/genomcore-receives-next-generation-funds-in-the-largest-funded-ai-project-for-the-personalized-treatment-of-metastatic-cancer https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/209 0
BIB presents the Companies Catalogue 2021

Bioinformatics Barcelona (BIB) presents the 2021 edition of its Companies Catalogue.

Made in collaboration with all BIB member companies, the catalogue aims to jointly show the range of business activities and services offered by all these companies that are part of the institution.

This digital document contains a wide variety of information, from the description of each company to its milestones and keywords related to its activities.

You can download the Companies Catalogue 2021 below:

Fri, 03 Dec 2021 09:34:34 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/207/bib-presents-the-companies-catalogue-2021 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/207 0
EMBO presents its survey to know the needs of the life sciences community

The European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) is a not-for-profit organization established in 1964 with the mission to promote excellence in the life sciences in Europe and beyond.

The survey's objective is to learn whether EMBO is doing for the research community what that community needs most, and how EMBO is perceived in general and in comparison to other, similar institutions. Both EMBO Council and EMBC have discussed the value of EMBO's programmes and activities in their meetings over the last two years, and this survey follows up on questions raised in these meetings.

They survey can be filled here  before December 17th

Wed, 01 Dec 2021 09:28:37 +0000 https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news//news/205/embo-presents-its-survey-to-know-the-needs-of-the-life-sciences-community https://www.bioinformaticsbarcelona.eu/news/205 0