Scientific Corner

The IBIV includes personnel and researchers from both the Hospital and the University of Vigo. The Institute is organized into strategic areas of research, some of which correspond to previous joint research units established between the hospital and the university, each one coordinated by one senior researcher, with an established research career (publications, projects) and an ability to supervise PhD students. Many of the senior researchers are specialists and internationally recognized in their respective areas.

The Institute is organized into 6 strategic areas of research, with each one including lines of research developed by different groups and supervised by a coordinator or principal researcher, who works on the scientific and technical planning aspects.

AREA 1: NEUROLOGICAL SCIENCES AND RARE DISEASES

This area is coordinated by Carmen Navarro Fdez-Balbuena (MD, PhD, Neuropathologist and Associated Professor at the University of Santiago de Compostela) and is composed of 3 research leaders (Jose Antonio Lamas, PhD, Experimental Neurophysiology; Jose Manuel Olivares, MD· PhD, Psychiatrist; Diana Valverde, PhD, Molecular Biology), 13 collaborating doctors and 22 other academic and technical staff (junior researchers, technicians and clinicians).

AREA 2: INFECTIOUS DISEASES, INFLAMMATION AND IMMUNITY

The area is coordinated by Prof. África González-Fernández (MD, PhD, Immunologist and Professor in Immunology at the University of Vigo, Director of the Biomedical Research Centre). The area has 34 staff members (9 Co-PIs (PhD), 13 clinicians, 6 Postdocs and 6 graduate students).

AREA 3: ENDOCRINOLOGY, METABOLISM AND NUTRITION

This area is coordinated by Federico Mallo Ferrer (MD, PhD, Professor in Endocrinology at the University of Vigo), and is composed of research leaders (Anunciación Lafuente Fernández PhD, Biologist, Professor of Toxicology at the University of Vigo); María Amalia Andrade Olivié PhD, Chemist, Department Head of Clinical Analysis, Hospital of Vigo), 11 co-researchers, 15 Postdocs and 29 other academic and technical staff (PhD students and clinicians).

AREA 4: BIOMATERIALS, TISSUE ENGINEERING AND REGENERATIVE MEDICINE

The area is coordinated by Prof Pío Manuel González-Fernández, (PhD, Professor in Applied Physics at University of Vigo) and is composed of 8 research leaders, 8 collaborating doctors and 18 other members, including students and 5 technicians.

AREA 5: NEW TOOLS IN DIAGNOSIS AND THERAPY

This area is coordinated by Dr Angel R. de Lera (Expert in Design and synthesis of antitumor drugs) and is composed of research leaders (Dr David Posada, Bioinformatics and Molecular Evolution; Dr Florentino Fdez. Riverola, Bioinformatics; Dr Ana Gago, Analytical Chemistry and Proteomics); 24 co-PIs (PhD), 31 Postdocs and 39 graduate students and technicians.

AREA 6: AGING AND CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES

The area is coordinated by Carlos Rodríguez Pascual (MD, PhD, Geriatrician), and includes the following research leaders: Andres Iñiguez Romo (MD, PhD, Cardiologist); Carlos Peña Gil. (MD, PhD, Cardiologist) Head of the Research and Innovation Service, Galician Health Service (Regional Health Authority); Francisco Calvo Iglesias (MD, Cardiologist), as well as co-researchers (10 specialists in Geriatric Medicine, 6 with PhD, 1 PhD epidemiologist, PhD 4 cardiologists, 2 specialist nurses and 1 psychologist), 15 doctors and 9 MDs.

BIOCAPS SENIOR RESEARCHERS

In addition to our interest in consolidating the positions in these emergent research groups, an International Recruitment Programme has been carried out to attract other highly-qualified international researchers, which has resulted in the incorporation into interdisciplinary projects within the strategic and horizontal research areas of the IBIV of the following senior researchers:

Roberto Carlos Agis-Balboa - Group of Neurological Sciences and Rare Diseases

Studied Biology at the University of Santiago de Compostela (2001) and obtained his PhD degree in Physiology & Biophysics (2008) at the University of Illinois, Chicago (USA). Roberto has worked at the European Neuroscience Institute-Gottingen (Germany) since 2008. He was awarded the prestigious EMBO fellowship (2009-2011), and recently received a German DFG grant (2013-2016). Roberto’s research interest is the genome-environment interaction (i.e., Epigenome), which occurs during the cognitive impairment associated with normal ageing, psychiatric disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. He is particularly interested in the epigenetic regulation of IGF2/IGFBP7 signalling in anxiety disorders and neurodegenerative diseases.

Susana Álvarez Rodríguez - Group of New Tools in Diagnosis and Therapy

Awarded a PhD in Chemistry in 2006. Dr Álvarez has a strong background in the synthesis and modification of organic molecules for biomedical applications. She has been involved in the rational design, synthesis and biological evaluation of new inhibitors of Retinoid Receptors and epigenetic regulators and, more recently, she has focused on the development of new macromolecules, such as oligomers of nucleic acids and dendrimers for biomedical applications, biological recognition or drug delivery.

Miriam López Álvarez - Group of Biomaterials, Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine

Awarded her PhD degree in Sciences/Biomaterials at the Universidade de Vigo in 2010. She has visited centres of expertise, such as the 3B´s Research Group (Headquarters of the European Institute of Excellence on Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine) (Universidade de Minho), Instituto Engenharia Biomedica (INEB, Universidade do Porto) and the Biomimetic-Multifunctional Materials Group (Universidad de Sevilla). After completing her PhD, she was responsible for setting up a cellular laboratory at the New Materials Group (Universidad de Vigo). She has been involved in 7 research projects with more than 15 publications. Her research interests are focused on the biological response of biomaterials for bone tissue engineering.

Luiz Stark Aroeira - Group of Infectious diseases, Inflammation and Immunity

Luiz is a biologist and PhD in immunology (1994). He has a strong background in cellular and molecular immunology with emphasis on immunological memory and tolerance. He has experience in autoimmune disease, developing two new therapeutic approaches for multiple sclerosis. More recently, Luiz has been studying the role of inflammatory mechanisms in tissue regeneration and fibrosis using a model of peritoneal dialysis. This study led to the generation of a new peritoneal dialysis fluid.

Eva Mª Vigo Gago - Group of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Nutrition

Awarded a PhD in Biology in 2004. Dr Vigo has a broad and solid training in experimental surgery techniques in endocrinology. She has developed several projects with the overall objective of characterizing the physiological role of novel endocrine signals in the control of neuroendocrine functions, such as reproduction and energy homeostasis in animal models, as well as establishing the implications of different endocrine signals in highly prevalent neuroendocrine disorders, such as some forms of infertility, alterations of puberty onset and body weight, and other endocrine diseases.

César Veiga García - Group of Aging and Cardiovascular Diseases

César is a physicist and PhD in Electronics and Computing in USC - Institute for Systems Informatics and Safety - Joint Research Centre in 1998. He has acquired experience in ICT and Medical Imaging, working for the private sector as well as in public institutions, such as the Centro de Supercomputacion de Galicia (CESGA). He has carried out a series of medical image processing projects in related disciplines, such as Computer Aided Diagnostics (CAD), Scientific Visualization, image analysis, PACS and telemedicine tools. Cesar’s research interests are high performance applications for cardiac imaging, including guidance of interventional procedures for cardiac surgery and imaging in heart failure, automated image analysis, etc. He is particularly interested in developing new techniques and algorithms for cardiovascular aging diseases.

Roman A. Kireev - Group of Aging and Cardiovascular Diseases

Is a biologist specializing in Biochemistry since 1997 (Saratov State University, Faculty of Biology, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Saratov, Russia) and obtained a PhD in Physiology and pathophysiology in 2001 with a thesis on "Composite estimation of structural-functional characteristics of red cell membrane belonging to children suffering from insulin dependent diabetes mellitus". From 2000 to 2005, he worked as an Assistant of Professor in the Biochemistry and Biophysics Department of Saratov State University, giving lectures in Biochemistry, Ecological Toxicology and Biomembrane and Radiobiology. He was a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Institute of General Pathology and Pathophysiology of the Russian Academy of Medical Science in Moscow (2005-2007), and a Research associate at the Laboratory of Experimental Endocrinology, Department of Physiology, Medical School, Complutense University, Madrid (2008-2012).