DONATE

A new tool against breast cancer: 3D bioprinted tumors using pig tissue 

Researchers at IBEC manage to recreate the complex composition of human breast tumors in the laboratory using tissues from female pig breasts. This new model will allow, among other applications, the production of artificial tumors to study the development of cancer and metastasis, and immunosuppression processes, as well as being an excellent platform for testing drugs against the disease. 

One step closer to self-dividing synthetic cells

For the first time, researchers have integrated cell division machinery in synthetic cells, paving the way towards truly life-like man-made systems. The study, published in the scientific journal Advanced Materials, was co-led by IBEC group leader César Rodriguez-Emmenegger.

Mechanosensing: harnessing nuclear mechanics to understand health and disease

A study led by IBEC researchers, and published in Nature Cell Biology, shows that applying mechanical force to the cell nucleus affects the transport of proteins across the nuclear membrane. In doing so, this controls cellular processes and could play a key role in various diseases, such as cancer. This entails a novel approach to understanding aspects of cancer invasion and metastasis, opening the door to potential new techniques for diagnosis and therapy.

The first light-controlled drug that could improve the hearing of people with cochlear implants

Researchers at the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) in Spain and the University Medical Center Göttingen in Germany achieve, for the first time, in vivo light-activated auditory stimulation without the need for genetic manipulation. This new light-controlled drug, capable of triggering the neural pathways involved in hearing, can contribute to improving the spectral resolution of cochlear implants used by people with profound hearing loss or deafness.

Nanorobots to fight bacterial infections

Researchers develop self-contained micro- and nanorobots with antimicrobial activity, capable of attacking bacteria in the site of infection. The work has been led by Samuel Sánchez (Institute for Bioengineering of Catalunya (IBEC) and Cesar de la Fuente-Núñez (University of Pennsylvania, USA). The new technology, tested in mice, is a valuable tool for the treatment of bacterial infections in a controlled and localized way. In a future not so far, it could help combat infections.

Laboratory-generated mini-kidneys help understand the link between diabetes and COVID-19 disease

In an international collaboration, researchers led by Nuria Montserrat, ICREA Research Professor at IBEC, have generated human mini-kidneys that simulate the kidney of a person with diabetes in the early stages of the disease. These diabetic mini-kidneys open the door to studying, among others, the relationship between diabetes and COVID-19.

Innovative bioengineered spheres might help treating diabetes

Researchers from IBEC, in collaboration with IDIBAPS in Barcelona, have developed nontoxic small spheres able to respond to variations in glucose levels, and producing insulin in vitro. These biomimetic spheroids containing pancreatic β-cells were prepared based on 3D bioprinting. This approach might help in the future improving clinical outcomes of β-cell transplantation strategies for diabetes treatment, as well as for in vitro drug screening platforms.