World pioneering foetal surgery against spina bifida successfully undergone in a Catalan hospital

November 2, 2011 09:58 PM | CNA / Maria Bélmez

For the first time in the world, a foetus having the spina bifida congenital disorder went through a new intra-uterus surgery technique. A medical team from Barcelona’s Vall d’Hebron Hospital operated on the foetus in its 24th week by placing a biological fabric on the spinal cord, in order to protect it from amniotic liquid and to ease the gap’s closing. The baby is now five months old and doctors are confident she may walk without any problems.

A vaccine prototype against HIV partially developed by Catalan researchers provokes a positive reaction in 90% of the cases

September 28, 2011 11:04 PM | CNA

The vaccine MVA-B against HIV gets a 90% immune response in its first test with humans. In addition, after a year, the vaccine proves to still be effective in 85% of the individuals. The vaccine is still a prototype but it shows a promising perspective. Soon it will be tested as well as a therapeutic vaccine, for people already infected with HIV-AIDS. The vaccine has been developed by the Spanish High Council of Scientific Research (CSIC), in collaboration with Barcelona’s Hospital Clínic and by Madrid’s Hospital Gregorio Marañón.

Catalonia received 73% more funding from the last EU research programme than from the previous one

September 23, 2011 11:03 PM | CNA

Between 2007 and 2010, Catalan research centres and private companies participated in a total of 1,047 projects funded by the Seventh Framework Programmes for Research and Technological Development of the European Union. In total, Catalan researchers have received 384 million euros from the EU in the last four years, which represents a 73% increase in relation to the previous programme, which ran from mid 2002 to 2006.