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David Peris, winner of the 1st Maria Blasco Award for the best scientific article of the year published by a Spanish researcher in Norway

22.04.2024

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I Maria Blasco Award to David Peris in Oslo From the left: Alberto Valero-Gracia, president at ENO, Maria A. Blasco, CNIO's scientific director, Sara Orellana, who received the award on behalf of Peris, José Ramón García, Spanish Ambassador to Norway and, Kjetil Taskén, ICR's director.

This is the first edition of the award organized by the Association of Spanish Researchers in Norway (IENO), with the support of the Spanish Embassy in Norway

The award-winning work is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the yeast Saccharomyces genomics, and it was published in ‘Nature Communications’

David Peris Navarro, senior researcher in Genetics and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Oslo (Norway) has won the first edition of the Maria Blasco Award for the best scientific article of the year published by a Spanish researcher in Norway during the year 2023.

The scientific director of the Spanish National Cancer Research Center (CNIO), Maria A. Blasco, after whom the award is named, presented the award in Oslo, at the Spanish Ambassador’s Residence in Norway, to David Peris’ lab co-researcher Sara Orellana, who received it on behalf of her colleague.

The Association of Spanish Researchers in Norway (IENO) announces this award, with the support of the Spanish Embassy in Norway, with the aim of disseminating the research carried out by Spanish nationals in Norway and to promote the international visibility of their work.

The award-winning study appeared in the journal Nature Communications under the title “Macroevolutionary diversity of traits and genomes in the model yeast genus Saccharomyces“, with Peris as lead author.

Yeast genomics, in depth

This work has “a major impact on basic research as it is the most comprehensive analysis of Saccharomyces yeast genomics to date, it is the elevation of this genus as a model for understanding biodiversity, population structure and macroevolutionary processes in microbial eukaryotes,” as stated on the IENO website.   

The award consists of the payment of expenses for attending a scientific congress to give visibility to their research work, up to a maximum of 15,000 kroner (about €1,300).

Al día siguiente, Maria A. Blasco impartió la conferencia Cómo abordar la inmortalidad celular en el cáncer en el Institute for Cancer Research (ICR) de Oslo.

The following day, Maria A. Blasco gave the lecture Targeting Cell Immortality in Cancer at the Institute for Cancer Research (ICR) in Oslo.

David Peris and his team have mapped the geographies, host organisms, and substrates or food sources, along with the evolutionary history and relationships, of approximately 1,800 Saccharomyces strains, covering the entire genus with unprecedented breadth and depth. They generated and analyzed complete genome sequences of 163 strains and cataloged the observable traits of 128 phylogenetically diverse strains.

Peris, who completed his Ph. D. in 2012 at the University of Valencia, has extensive experience in comparative genomics, fungal evolution, high-throughput microbial phenotyping, bioinformatics and biotechnological applications. Since 2021 he is Principal Investigator at the University of Oslo, and since 2022 Distinguished Researcher at the Institute of Agrochemistry and Food Technology (IATA-CSIC).

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