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2019 BIST Conference

Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST)

Jueves, 7 de noviembre de 2019 desde las 8:30 hasta las 15:00 (CET)

2019 BIST Conference

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Frontier research for the medicine of the future


The Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST) is launching two major research programmes to articulate its capabilities and scientific excellence to address some of today’s critical social challenges around human health and climate change. In the field of health, our precision medicine programme seeks to have a comprehensive view of the patient through the combined use of genomics, bioinformatics, nanotechnology, among other advanced experimental techniques.


The third edition of the BIST Annual Conference will be focused on some of the last research developments in the area of human health. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the work of some of the world’s leading experts in optogenetics applied to neuroscience.


The research of these experts highlights the importance of multidisciplinarity to achieve significant advances in research, allowing us to address some of the major societal challenges we face. These experts also work at the intersection of biology, physics, chemistry, and engineering, and use advanced microscopy techniques, one of the BIST strategic priorities since its founding.





8:30h      Registration


9:00h      Welcome

Gabby Silberman, BIST Director General

Directors of the BIST centres


9:30h      BIST Ignite Programme Session


BIOSPAD: Towards wearable neuromonitoring with diffuse optics
Sebastian Grinstein (ICREA Research Professor at IFAE)

Artifical Bacteria: a novel generation of bioinspired vaccines
Claudio Roscini (ICN2 Senior Researcher)

SensBot: the next generation of programmable 3D printed living biorobots
Maria Guix Noguera (IBEC Postdoctoral Researcher)

Tania Patiño Padial (IBEC Postdoctoral Researcher)

ORGANSENS: Dynamic monitoring of pancreas metabolism by combining nano-optical biosensing to organ on-a-chip technology
Maria Alejandra Ortega Machuca (IBEC Postdoctoral Researcher)

10:30h    PROBIST and International PhD Session


Dynamics of gene expression and chromatin marking in a model of human trans-differentiation
Beatrice Borsari (International BIST PhD Student, CRG)

Molecular catalysis as a tool to produce solar fuels
Nataliia Vereshchuk (International BIST PhD student, ICIQ)

Attosecond X-ray investigation of conical intersections in organic molecules
Maurizio Reduzzi (PROBIST Fellow, ICFO)

The life and times of galaxies
Malgorzata Siudek (PROBIST Fellow, IFAE)

Band-gap modulation of 2D semiconductors for photoelectrochemical biosensing
Emily Nguyen (PROBIST Fellow, ICN2)

Identifying genes involved in brain size regulation
Ilaria Dutto (PROBIST Fellow, IRB Barcelona)


11:30h    Coffee Break


12:00h    Dialogues in the boundaries of knowledge


New approaches to the optogenetic neuronal control


Prof. Ed Boyden (Dept. of Biological Engineering, MIT) and
Prof. Valentina Emiliani (Institut de la Vision, CNRS, Paris

Prof. Ernest Giralt (Design, Synthesis and Structure of Peptides and Proteins Group, IRB Barcelona)
Prof. Michael Krieg (Neurophotonics And Mechanical Systems Biology Group, ICFO)


14:00h    Closing remarks



Edward Boyden (Plano, Texas, 1979), Y. Eva Tan Professor of Neurotechnology and member of the MIT McGovern Institute and Media Lab academic teams, collaborated with Karl Deisseroth to create the optogenetic technique. This technique has revolutionized research in neuroscience and was named the “Methodology of the Year” by Nature Methods in 2010, and included in the “Breakthroughs of the Decade” article by Science. Employing genetic modification of neurons, the technique allows researchers to control neurons with light and study their functions and the impact of their alterations to an extremely precise degree. Boyden, who has received numerous international awards as recognition for his work in optogenetics, will discuss the latest developments in this and other neurotechnologies with Valentina Emiliani, Director of the Photonics Department and leader of the Wave Front Engineering Microscopy group (WFEMO) at the Vision Institute of the CNRS (Paris, France). The group led by Emiliani has pioneered the use of wavefront engineering in neuroscience and has developed several new techniques for the development of optogenetics to improve its accuracy.


The five research projects selected in the competitive 2018 BIST Ignite Call will also be presented at the conference. These projects are another great example of how multidisciplinary research approaches are leading to novel ways of addressing challenges in human health. From the creation of bionanorobots, to enzyme-powered motors with possible applications in drug delivery, to brand new types of biosensors, to organoids with real-time monitoring for testing new medications, to synthetic pathogens that teach the immune system to defend itself against infections without the risk of multiresistance, the BIST Ignite projects are all on the frontier of knowledge.


The conference programme also includes a session for selected postdoctoral researchers working at the BIST centres to present their novel research.


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