All donations to the CNIO go to the CNIO Friends program, which allows us to hire outstanding young researchers and open new lines of research with which to understand, diagnose and tackle cancer effectively. Each of your contributions has a real and direct impact.
Thank you for your support, together we will be able to stop cancer! We present here some of the CNIO Friends researchers:
The main goal of my research is to find new targets to block melanoma metastasis and prevent relapse of therapy resistant tumors, the main causes of death of melanoma patients. In particular, my project aims to analyze the use of the NGFR small molecule inhibitor (THX-B) as anti-metastatic therapy in melanoma, alone or in combination with current immunotherapies, and the mechanisms underlying these events.
I explore how MASTL-PP2A/B55, a pathway involved in mitosis, regulates metabolism. Given that metabolic changes have implications in cancer but also in other western diseases, these analyses might provide new therapeutic targets to prevent and to treat these illness, improving patients’ lives.
“My project will explore whether the microenvironment determines cell malignant transformation beyond the effect of mutations or in combination with them, in the context of pancreatic carcinoma”. Yurena aims to understand the possible contribution of non-autonomous factors to pancreatic cancer progression.
“I do research with patient derived tumor organoids from metastatic breast cancer patients”. Ana’s objective is to find better targeted and personalized therapies for patients with advanced Triple Negative (TNNBC) and hormone positive breast tumors.
Lluís Cordón:”Brain metastasis is a global social and economic burden with increasing incidence and no efficient therapies available. My research goal is to prevent cancer cells from controlling the brain’s defense mechanisms for its own benefit. Understanding the mechanisms in the human brain context will benefit us to develop better pharmacological approaches against the disease.” To do so, Lluís will study a representation of the patient’s brain using a technology called “brain organoids” to establish effective strategies for the disease.
“I work in elucidating the 3D structure and providing an atomic model of the Unconventional Prefoldin RPB5 interactor-like (URI) protein complex”. Albert is looking for the structural basis for the role of URI in cancer and aims to propose novel therapeutic strategies by disrupting the complex interactions.
“My project will centre on how to increase the anti-tumoral response of the immune system in the context of pancreatic and lung tumours induced by KRAS oncogenes”. The research of Federico aims to improve the treatment of these tumours, which are among the most aggressive and lethal cancer types.
CNIO Friends Contract - Fundación Humanismo y Ciencia.
“I study how melanoma acts at a distance before metastasis and evades the immune system in different anatomical structures.” Magdalena’s research has a particular emphasis on the role of MIDKINE in different cell populations of the bone marrow.
"I investigate how RET oncogene activity is altered in certain cancer types, such as lung and breast cancer, as well as neuroblastoma." Rubén aims to find compounds capable of inhibiting this gene that could provide more effective treatments against these types of tumours.
“I study the contribution of STAG2 mutations to aggressive Ewing Sarcoma (EWS), which is the second most frequent type of bone cancer in children.” Maria’s goal is to understand how STAG2 mutations promote the metastatic phenotype to likelly improve the clinical management and the outcome of EWS patients with metastatic disease.
“I study how cells regulate the initiation of DNA replication to ensure the correct inheritance of genetic material”. Sergio aims to understand the mechanisms that prevent improper reduplication of genomic regions leading to genetic instability, a phenomenon that usually fuels different type of cancers.
"I explore the novel mechanism between liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma.” The aim of Kim’s project is to provide a new treatment option for liver cancer patients.
“I study the structural and molecular bases for the regulation of the mTOR signalling pathway by molecular chaperones.” Sofía’s project explores new potential strategies to target the mTOR pathway against cancer progression.
CNIO Friends Contract - María Oliva.
“I investigate the molecular ‘disguises’ and ‘breaks’ that allow tumor cells to avoid an attack from the immune system.” Understanding the biology of these mechanisms is essential for the development of effective immunotherapies against cancer.
CNIO Friends Contract - Carmen Gloria Bonet.
"I study how the RET protein works, as it plays an important role in neuroblastoma, a type of fatal childhood cancer (15%) that affects the cells of the adrenal gland and the peripheral nervous system." Moustafa investigates personalised therapeutic strategies in the treatment of this aggressive tumor.
Previous ‘CNIO Friends’ contracts
"I study the three-dimensional structure of CAD, a protein that is highly expressed in cancer." María analyses how genetic mutations affect the structure of this protein, to develop new therapies for treatment.
"I study the role of telomere dysfunction in the origin of kidney and liver fibrosis, which in its advanced stages may lead to cancer in these organs." Sarita’s goal is to find new therapies for the treatment of these diseases.
"I study the role of post-translational modifications of shelterin proteins in telomere maintenance." Giuseppe´s goal is to identify novel pathways and kinases whose activity is required for chromosome end protection.
CNIO Friends Contract – Eva Plaza.
"I investigate the potential of immunology as a strategy against breast cancer, specifically in Triple Negative tumors (TNBC) for a better understanding of its evolution”. Rebeca’s research aims to identify treatments targeted to the tumor with fewer side effects than current therapies.
"I explore therapeutic and diagnostic options for brain metastasis." These metastases arise in 10-40% of all cancer cases originating from different organs. Neibla is the first author of a study that describes how a compound called silibinin can reduce them.
“We have identified a molecule involved in the survival of tumour cells when they divide. Our working hypothesis is that if we can manage to inhibit the action of those molecules, it should keep the tumour from spreading.” Carolina is looking closely at what could prove to be a new target for pharmacological-based cancer treatments.
CNIO Friends Contract - Fundación Juegaterapia.
“I study neuroblastoma, one of the most frequent tumors in children.” Irene hopes that the molecular findings and the translational aspects of the project, such as the identification of therapeutic strategies and the development of biomarkers, have their application in clinic in the near future.
CNIO Friends Contract - Fundación Juegaterapia.
“I have undertaken a study focusing on gliomas, cerebral tumours common in children and adolescents.” Miguel’s goal is to see that the results are transferred to the clinical sphere, where they can contribute to increasing patients’ survival rates and improving the quality of life.
“I am examining the process by which nanoparticles can be used to transport medication to a specific location in the body, on account of their enhanced ability to reach the compromised cells.” Sebastián’s work involves searching for the best way to make certain that the greatest possible number of nanoparticles actually make it all the way to the tumour location.