News from CEXS-UPF
The Vanguardia de la Ciencia Award has been given this year to UPF researchers Pura Muñoz-Cánoves and Laura García-Prat for their studies on cell aging. This prize, based on the vote of the readers of La Vanguardia, values what is the most important research carried out in Spain in 2016.
Muñoz-Cánoves and García-Prat have discovered why the tissues of the human body deteriorate over the years and how to rejuvenate them. According to the results presented in Nature, the tissues lose their rate of regenerative capacity when autophagy, a mechanism of waste recycling of the cells, fails. Their experiments demonstrate that restoring autophagy with drugs can slow tissues aging. "Although experiments have been based on muscle tissues, autophagy is essential for all organs", says Muñoz-Cánoves, who heads UPF's Cell Biology Group. These results support the hypothesis that the discovery of these two researchers offers a strategy to curb aging in the human body as a whole.
Research on aging, which has received majority support from readers, is the continuation of a line of work for which Muñoz-Canoves already won the Vanguardia de la Ciencia Award two years ago. The researcher at UPF thus becomes the first person to repeat as the winner of the award. "Receiving this award is a satisfaction for us because it gives value not only to our work but to the entire laboratory of Cell Biology," comments Muñoz-Cánoves. "It's about recognizing the work and daily effort of the whole team and it will hopefully make people aware of the importance of the work of researchers in general," Garcia-Prat concludes.
Image by Xavier Cervera / La Vanguardia