SECRET4SCI Project awarded Melo e Castro Prize from the Santa Casa da Misericórdia

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The project SECRET4SCI led by Dr. António Salgado and Nuno Silva (Life and Health Sciences Research Institute – ICVS, School of Medicine, University of Minho), carried out in collaboration with Prof. Ana Colette Mauricio (Instituto Ciências Biomédicas Abel Salazar, University of Porto), was awarded with the Melo e Castro Prize (200.000€).

“This work, together with the Life and Health Sciences Research Institute – ICVS and School of Medicine,  University of Minho, was a great opportunity to apply the new technology available, in our pets. From One Health’s perspective, these cell-based therapies can now be used in clinical trials and compassionate treatments (in dogs) to later be applied in humans”, highlights Ana Colette Mauricio. “This collaborative work between the two teaching and research institutions allows us to continue other common projects for the development of new cell therapies for application in Regenerative Medicine, for animals and humans, since the ICBAS team has extensive experience in treatment of our animals as well as in clinical and pre-clinical trials”, concludes Ana Colette Marício.

This project is composed by a team of 20 researchers with a multidisciplinary background, and its main objectives are the development of new strategies for spinal cord injuries (SCI) repair using the growth factors and extracellular vesicles, collectively known as secretome, obtained from mesenchymal stem cell populations.

This award is one of the two Prizes Santa Casa in Neurosciences, which represent an annual investment on neurosciences research of 400,000€, dedicated to two main fields, neurodegenerative diseases and spinal cord injury. The goal of the prize Melo e Castro (200,000€) is to promote new advancements and techniques in SCI repair/regeneration in order to overcome the severe motor and physiological limitations that this condition imposes, contributing for improvement of the quality of life of patients.

In the photo: Alexandra Rema, Ana Lúcia Luís, Ana Colette Maurício, Luís Ataíde. Also members of the team are Rui Damásio, Carla Mendonça, Jorge Ribeiro and Irina Amorim.

This text was written by Bárbara Silva, Communication Manager | Internationalization Working Group

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