UANDES will strengthen research with the award of funds to implement a scientific center

The Universidad de los Andes was awarded the Fourth National Basal Funding Competition for Scientific and Technological Centers of Excellence, granted by the National Agency for Research and Development (ANID) with an amount of more than 6 billion pesos, one of the most important funds in the area of health at a national level. 

 The project presented is “Center of Interventional Medicine for Precision and Advanced Cellular Therapy” (IMPACT) and will be directed by the researcher Maroun Khoury, academic of the Faculty of Medicine, researcher of the Center for Biomedical Research and Innovation, CiiB, and scientific director of Cells for Cells. 

 The funds from this basal funding are aimed at ensuring that the cell therapy technologies developed by the center can be applied and transferred to society and that the results of the research contribute to public policy and to increasing the competitiveness of the Chilean economy. In this sense, the UANDES research that is already being developed at the CiiB and that will be enhanced with these funds are Cell Therapy, Biomarkers and Tissue Engineering. 

 This project will strengthen research in cell therapy, create new lines in biomedical research and development, biomaterials and medical engineering, artificial intelligence in bioinformatics and healthcare and biotechnological and clinical alliance for the translation of advanced therapies; train graduate students; link with other institutions such as the Pontificia Universidad Católica, Universidad de Chile, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso and Universidad de La Frontera. In addition to directly benefiting people through permanent links and access to clinical trials. 

 José Antonio Guzmán, Rector of the Universidad de los Andes, highlighted the relevance of this project, since it will be the largest in terms of resources that the university has been awarded. “The relevance of this new center of excellence is that, in addition to having strong linkage aspects, it will also impact different areas of the University such as some academic areas (Medicine and Dentistry), postgraduate, the university clinic, among others; which will allow collaborative and multidisciplinary work.” 

 Anil Sadarangani, Director of Innovation UANDES, said that “the announcement made by ANID shows the great progress that the University has made in research, positioning our university as one of the leading institutions in R+D+i”. 

 For his part, the director of the new IMPACT center, Maroun Khoury, explained that “the center, as its name indicates, wants to have a significant impact on people’s quality of life. Our aspiration is to close the gap between scientific research and clinical practice in Chile. Our goal is for the center to transform precision and advanced therapies that are currently inaccessible, complicated or very expensive into something accessible, affordable and simple”. 

This Basal Fund aims to enhance Chile’s economic development through substantial and long-term financing, where it is expected to achieve an improvement in the quality and relevance of national research; the strengthening and expansion of centers of excellence that develop high quality research in thematic areas of strategic importance for national development; the formation of advanced and excellent human capital. 

Author: Universidad de los Andes

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