Pharmaceutical drugs, characterized by their environmental persistence (e.g. cytostatic drugs [CDs]) have been detected in water bodies (drinking water, groundwater, surface water, and effluent wastewater) at concentrations up to μg/L level. Actual methods for the removal and degradation of CDs, including electrochemical, photochemical, and biological methods have been developed. However, these methods are expensive and sometimes inefficient for CDs complete removal from the treated water. Including the exploitation of previous results from EU funded projects, the goal of project RECOPHARMA is to design, develop, validate and demonstrate a novel process by sequential integration the potentials offered by Molecular Imprinted Polymers (MIPs), Reagentless Thermosorption (RTS), Nanocomposites Functional Materials, Advanced Oxidation Processes, for an effective treatment aiming the recovery of target recalcitrant CDs and degradation of corresponding transformation products or metabolites, working in a continuous operation mode. The suggested approach offers versatile, fast, highly efficient, and low-cost treatment for wastewaters.
RECOPHARMA brings together academic research centres and the private sector, with a long-term goal of designing and developing advanced water treatment technologies in the interest of the society and integrate them for demonstration following a circular economy approach. Through the scheduled secondments, the involved staff will perform the required R&I to demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of the developed process, including the technical formation of specialists as a fundamental activity to project success. The secondments will also enhance the exchange of knowledge, best practices, know-how, innovations, experience, mutual cooperation and culture of work between different organizations, regions and countries through the partners’ well-established reputation as transfer hubs.
The European Chronic Diseases Alliance has defined cancer as one of the major non-communicable diseases, accounting for 13% of the deaths worldwide, resulting in 8.2 million deaths annually. In the NEOSETAC project, breast cancer will be the focus of study being the most common cancers in women. It comprises of 10.4% of all the cancer incidences among women, causing 411 093 deaths per year overall the world. In Europe, there is more than twice of the amount of new breast cancer cases annually than new cases of cancer in any other place. The complexity of breast cancer makes it a big challenge for successful treatment. The NEOSETAC project will demonstrate the anti-cancer therapeutic potential of a novel Selenium based therapy for the management of breast cancer. The clinical application of Selenium (Se) compounds for cancer treatment is until now limited in chemoprevention as dietary supplement. In this proposal, we aim to improve the therapeutic window, pharmacokinetic properties and targeting drug delivery via nanoparticles (NPs). By loading Se into biodegradable NPs, drug release is controlled within the narrow therapeutic window of Se. At the same time the uptake and activation of Se compounds at desired location (tumor lesions and metastasis) is achieved. We also propose to functionalize NPs by cancer cell / cancer stem cell targeting ligands to further improve the therapeutic efficacy and prevent cancer recurrence after chemotherapy. These advantages will lead to an enhanced anticancer activity and reduced systemic toxicity. Moreover, targeting via NPs will improve the pharmacokinetic properties and increase the relatively short half-life (~18 hours) of Se.
Daily intake of arsenic polluted water by cattle in Argentina is becoming of increasing concern, especially due to the important size of the livestock export market where EU is a main customer. Because natural forage or alfalfa grown without irrigation is used to feed livestock, drinking water is considered the main source of arsenic for cattle (several studies reveal arsenic concentrations in phreatic water samples above 0.15 mg/L, the level that suggest causing chronic intoxication in cattle). Therefore, as it has been demonstrated, there is a risk of exposure for the human health due to the introduction in the food chain through milk or meat. In view of arsenic toxicity and the large number of people exposed to its effects worldwide, there is a clear need for the implementation in remote exploitations of affordable and sustainable treatment methodologies to provide potable water to cattle. To face this problem and provide a solution, NANOREMOVAS pursues to develop and implement a pilot plant for the remote treatment of arsenic polluted waters based on the application of state-of-art advanced multifunctional nanostructured materials, already tested at the laboratory level. In this sense, NANOREMOVAS includes the cooperation between the industry and academia of partners from Europe and Argentina. Besides the required research and innovation to demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of the developed water recycling technique, the seconded researchers will carry out a series of tasks and outreach activities, promoting entrepreneurship culture and support of young innovative companies in order to set-up technological partnerships within the water and livestock sector. Furthermore, NANOREMOVAS represents a significant contribution to knowledge and technology transfer from the academia to the industrial sector, through the partners well established reputation as transfer hubs, that will led to quickly creating designs and industrial equipment/processes/model.
The project will focus on Targeted Open Innovation in energy, water and agriculture societal challenges through a balanced innovation-friendly ecosystem in the Southern Mediterranean Neighborhood (SMN) based on quintuple helix and NEXUS approach. The project will enhance and support regional smart specialization and development by increasing research capacity, effective mobility of young innovators/researchers and shared knowledge to improve their participation in the EU research area. It will contribute to the establishment of favorable and stable conditions for international cooperation and the set-up of a Common Knowledge and Innovation Space of specialization in the SMN for a real socio-economic impact, based on co-ownership and mutual benefits.
Our partnership ensures coherence and complementarity with past and on-going regional EU-MPC cooperation initiatives and existing bilateral S&T Agreements. The project allows easily building of synergies among several ongoing initiatives thanks to the established Think Tanks Network of Science Counselors in the MPC area and the observatory of current initiatives. In this way, the project will seek continuous complementarity and coherence with the activities of the Strategic Forum for International Cooperation to enhance the cooperation and close synergies through the involvement of the widest possible range of stakeholders, from funding agencies, research organizations, industry to civil society. Therefore an enhanced and more reliable definition of the priority setting mechanisms in the region from an innovation point of view is expected. Through these activities and by the definition of a Join Action Plan, the project will effectively use the science diplomacy and facilitates the identification of remaining obstacles, conflicts for cooperation and support the R&I bilateral policy dialogue addressing sensitive challenges between EU and MPC through the dialogue and coordination platform that will be created.
FP4BATIW is a coordination and support action addressed to foster partnerships and networking for best available water treatment technologies implementation in the MPC region by promoting the interaction between highly qualified members, both from EU and MPC, of the knowledge value chain (KVC) on water treatment and corresponding stake holders community (national water agencies, municipalities, industrial waste water producers, entities managing business incubators, etc.). Such action will lead to new approaches, tools and innovation. Integrating sustainability aspects and allowing the collaboration between experienced and new teams for coaching and capacity building in cooperation. Such fostering activities will contribute to reduce the gap between research & innovation and the water treatment market enhancing synergies and allowing the concentration of efforts, know-how exchange, coownership and dialogue. FP4BATIW will promote the employment of water treatment technologies pilot plant demonstrations and real case studies achieved under former or on-going EU-FP7 projects with MPC participation to substantiate pre-competitive research in the water sector in the region, with particular regard to develop innovative business models focused on generating water saving and multi-use solutions. In addition, the partnerships engaged by the members of FP4BATIW will emphasize on pre-competitive research efforts to develop innovative water treatment technologies that can be used for a wide range of costs, management systems, scales and technological advances in the MPC region.
MyStone in CaixaImpulse
Banking Fundation "la Caixa" and Caixa Capital Risc, presented the 15 projects selected within the CaixaImpulse program. This is the first comprehensive program in Spain for the creation of biotechnology companies, and aims to promote the transformation of scientific knowledge in companies and products in the field of life sciences and health creating value in society. When selecting projects has prioritized the potential transfer of assets and its impact on society. One of these 15 selected projects is MyStone presented by researchers from GTS Central and Computer Vision Center. MyStone is a device that can identify the chemical composition of kidney stones quickly and easily. The formation of solid depositions along the urinary tract is a common disease. Globally, 15% of people have kidney stones , 6.5 % had a recurring basis , and this percentage increases in prevalence worldwide. Since the treatment of the disease is expensive and the cheaper solutions are inaccurate, there is provided a computer vision based on low cost and easy to use device, which facilitates the analysis of the composition of calculations prevention face best and most effective of recurrence.