News from CEXS-UPF
The Fundació La Marató de TV3 has made public the 34 research projects on diabetes and obesity that will receive the funds rose in La Marató 2015. Among the 57 award-winning researchers we can find Francesc Posas, Vice-Rector of Scientific Policy and Faculty Affairs of UPF and leader, together with Eulàlia de Nadal, of the research group on Cell Signaling of the DCEXS; Cristina López-Rodríguez, leader of the research group on NFAT5 Proteins and immune response together with José Aramburu, and Elena Martín, postdoctoral researcher at the Laboratory of Neuropharmacology.
Together with Rubén Díaz, from Hospital San Juan de Dios, and Gorka Orive, from University of the Basque Country, Francesc Posas, Eulàlia de Nadal and Javier Macía lead the project "Encapsulated synthetic cellular circuits to restore glycemic control in type 1 diabetes". Making use of synthetic biology, the researchers seek to develop a cellular device capable of detecting different levels of glucose and secreting insulin or glucagon to regulate blood glucose concentration.
On the other hand, the project "Selective inhibition of inflammatory macrophages of obese adipose tissue for the treatment of type 2 diabetes associated with obesity", coordinated at UPF by Cristina López-Rodríguez (DCEXS-UPF), in which José Aramburu (DCEXS) also participates, and led by Ángel Luis Corbi (CSIC), will analyze the connections between immune cells that give rise to type 2 diabetes, a disease in which the inflammatory component has an important weight.
Finally, La Marató will also finance the " Study of New Molecular Targets in Preclinical Models of Obesity", focusing on the role that the brain reward system plays in the development of obesity and led by researchers Elena Martín (DCEXS), Mara Dierssen (CRG), and Emmanuelle Valjent, from the Institute of Functional Genomics of Montpellier. The main goal of this project is to evaluate the impact of the excessive consumption of tasty and caloric food on the modifications of the activity of specific neurons, the median spiny neurons expressing dopamine receptors type 2 (DRD2) of the estriatopalidal circuit.