Aggregation of leading researchers
Regarding health sciences, a movement of institutional aggregation has been generated with the participation of the University of Cantabria, the Higher Council of Scientific Research (CSIC), Marqués de Valdecilla University Hospital and Valdecilla Virtual Hospital. The scientific capacity of the aggregation and the infrastructures provided are strengthened with the setting up of the new headquarters for the Institute of Biomedicine and Biotechnology in Cantabria (IBBTEC), a mixed UC, CSIC and Regional-Government centre.
Cantabria International Campus favours a process of integration in a unique cluster with the IBBTEC and IFIMAV research groups, as well as the other UC groups who work in that area. The cluster aggregates more than 500 researchers and technicians to promote research, teaching and transfer and has already started to attract new high-quality international researchers. The cluster also promotes transfer through business partners in the region and it attracts other companies in the biotechnological sector to Cantabria.
On the other hand, the UC and Valdecilla Virtual Hospital are already collaborating on an educational programme with a network of experts from universities such as Harvard and MIT, which aspire to become a reference in Europe and a bridge for transfer to Latin-America.
Current situation of the Area of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
In this phase it has advanced in a convincing way, as demonstrated by the imminent transfer to IBBTEC (UC-CSIC), one of the best biomedical research centres in Spain due to its number of publications, and to its new Head Office in the Scientific and Technological Park of Cantabria (expected for the beginning of 2013). The effective incorporation of Hrvoje Pektovic in the UC within the AGL Programme has allowed an ambitious collaboration project with the company Acies-Bio (Slovenia) to be set up. This is aimed at new developments in medicine and drugs in the nervous system, oncology and infectious pathology, using methods of bacterial biotechnology.
In parallel, progress has been made in the culmination of the integration of Biomedical Research in Cantabria: the creation of a new foundation that will allow accreditation of the current IFIMAV as an Institute of Health Research by the Carlos III Health Institute; and on the other hand, it will allow signing a protocol of coordination of resources related with bio-sanitary R+D+I in the region. This agreement will mean full coordination between promotion actions in research, material and personal resources and work-lines developed by the UC, IFIMAV and CSIC through IBBTEC. Both documents will be signed before the end of 2012.
The work carried out together with Valdecilla Virtual Hospital (HvV), which has a strong connection with Harvard Medical School & Massachusetts General Hospital (MIT), has meant the internationalization of teaching and research activities with the afore-mentioned centre, and whose director, Robert Simon renewed his position as “Visiting Professor of Medical Simulation” in CCI. In Post-Graduate teaching, the Master’s Degree in Image and Medical Robotics has been set up, in which doctors and engineers will work jointly in an innovating format in Spain around clinical simulation, as well as the Inter-University Master’s Degree in Research in Mental Health, in the last phase of its accreditation from ANECA as an official degree.