CRIS Contra el Cáncer funds a project by CIC bioGUNE to boost breast cancer research

The III Edition of the CRIS Research Awards Ceremony 2023 took place on Wednesday, April 17, highlighting the commitment of CRIS Programs to finance high-quality oncological research in 80 research centers in 16 countries.

Nearly 10 million euros were awarded this year to support outstanding projects, including the one led by Dr. Ana Ruiz-Saenz on resistance in breast cancer, the most common type in women.

The Auditorium of the Ramón Areces Foundation in Madrid witnessed a groundbreaking event last Wednesday in the field of oncological research: the III Edition of the CRIS Research Awards Ceremony 2023.

CRIS Research Programs aim to support and finance excellent cancer research projects with a duration of five years. In this 2023 edition, oncological research is financed in 80 research centers in 16 countries, becoming leaders in Spain for their economic endowment and duration.

This year, the scientific community gathered once again to celebrate the commitment and dedication of outstanding researchers in the fight against cancer. The CRIS Research Programs 2023 have awarded a total of nearly 10 million euros to boost high-quality projects and support brilliant researchers, thus recognizing the exceptional work of the awardees in various CRIS calls, both nationally and internationally. Additionally, in this edition, the renewal of two CRIS Units in Spanish public hospitals has been awarded, thus reinforcing the commitment to research in the clinical field.

One of the highlighted projects is the "Response and Resistance in Breast Cancer", led by Dr. Ana Ruiz-Saenz, Principal Investigator Ramón y Cajal and Ikerbasque in the 'Cancer Therapy Resistance' group at CIC bioGUNE, member of BRTA. This project aims to unravel the biological mechanisms that determine the response to Trastuzumab-Deruxtecan therapy in breast cancer patients, which could have a significant impact on the treatment of this disease.

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women, affecting one in eight. Among these women with breast cancer, 20% suffer from an aggressive form in which tumor cells present large amounts of a protein called HER2 (hence these tumors are called HER2+). Recently, a therapy has been developed that has had a huge positive impact on patients with this type of tumors, known as Trastuzumab-Deruxtecan (T-DXd). However, it is still necessary to understand why some patients respond to this therapy while others do not, even if they do not have high levels of HER2 in their tumor cells.

During the event day, a scientific symposium titled "Redefining the future of cancer: transforming cancer detection through advanced technologies" was held. Internationally and nationally renowned scientists addressed crucial topics such as early detection, precise diagnostics, preventive cancer vaccines, and the role of artificial intelligence in research and healthcare systems. Among the prominent speakers was Dr. Isabel Mendizabal, Emerging Scientist in the Cancer Cell Signaling and Metabolism Lab, who presented on "Single-cell transcriptomic technologies to identify metastatic drivers in prostate cancer".

The III Edition of the CRIS Research Awards Ceremony 2023 reaffirms the commitment of the scientific community and CRIS Contra el Cáncer in the search for innovative and effective solutions to combat this devastating disease.

About CRIS Contra el Cáncer

The CRIS Contra el Cáncer Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and developing research to fight cancer. With the aim of providing the scientific community with the necessary resources, the foundation strives to close the funding gap compared to other European countries.

About CIC bioGUNE

The Centre for Cooperative Research in Biosciences (CIC bioGUNE), member of the Basque Research & Technology Alliance (BRTA), located in the Bizkaia Technology Park, is a biomedical research organisation conducting cutting-edge research at the interface between structural, molecular and cell biology, with a particular focus on generating knowledge on the molecular bases of disease, for use in the development of new diagnostic methods and advanced therapies.

About Ikerbasque

Ikerbasque - Basque Foundation for Science - is the result of an initiative of the Department of Education of the Basque Government that aims to reinforce the commitment to scientific research by attracting, recovering and consolidating excellent researchers from all over the world. Currently, it is a consolidated organization that has 290 researchers/s, who develop their work in all fields of knowledge.

About BRTA

BRTA is an alliance of 4 collaborative research centres (CIC bioGUNE, CIC nanoGUNE, CIC biomaGUNE y CIC energiGUNE) and 13 technology centres (Azterlan, Azti, Ceit, Cidetec, Gaiker, Ideko, Ikerlan, Leartiker, Lortek, Neiker, Tecnalia, Tekniker y Vicomtech) with the main objective of developing advanced technological solutions for the Basque corporate fabric.

With the support of the Basque Government, the SPRI Group and the Provincial Councils of the three territories, the alliance seeks to promote collaboration between the research centres, strengthen the conditions to generate and transfer knowledge to companies, contributing to their competitiveness and outspreading the Basque scientific-technological capacity abroad.

BRTA has a workforce of 3,500 professionals, executes 22% of the Basque Country's R&D investment, registers an annual turnover of more than 300 million euros and generates 100 European and international patents per year.

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