Brain Week has brought together in the city of L’Hospitalet various proposals for scientific dissemination and education aimed at disseminating knowledge and research on neurodegenerative diseases and also the latest discoveries on how the brain works. Included in the LHCiència strategy and led by the Pessics de Ciència cycle, the Week’s activities have had the active involvement of IDIBELL, which has co-organized two of the program’s proposals.
On Saturday, March 18, the Cercle Catòlic from L’Hospitalet theater hosted the performance of the play Abans que arribi l’alemany, by Marta Barceló, performed by the company 8uit de Teatre from Sant Cugat del Vallès. Starring the actors Maria Vancells and Siscu Ruiz, the play deals with Alzheimer’s disease through Julia, a woman who is close to sixty and who knows that when the German arrives, she will lose her memory. For this reason, the character decides to do everything that she had never been able to do, all those things for which she had always lacked time, and that she realizes that they were the ones that gave meaning to her existence. After the show, all the spectators enjoyed a discussion with the participation of the two actors from the company, Mercedes Mencía and Maite Pastrana, from the L’Hospitalet Association of Alzheimer’s Relatives, and Drs. Cristina Sanchez-Castañeda, neuropsychologist at Bellvitge Hospital, and Marta Barrachina, IDIBELL researcher and CEO of the company ADMit Therapeutics.
The conversation, moderated by Joan Duran, also gave the public a voice and treated the disease from various points of view. The interpreters shared their experience after immersing themselves in the characters. The relatives of patients spoke about how they face the day to day with an Alzheimer patient, the role played by the Association and the relationship with other relatives. Dr. Sánchez-Castañeda explained how they deal with the disease at the Hospital, what are the benefits of current treatments and how they approach it at a psychological and psychosocial level. Finally, Dr. Barrachina spoke about the biological causes of Alzheimer’s disease, where research efforts are directed to elucidate the unknown aspects, and how the research will impact the improvement of patients.
On the other hand, on Tuesday, March 21, the IDIBELL research group on Stem Cells and Neurodegenerative Diseases, led by the researcher Antonella Consiglio, offered a flash talks session to more than a hundred students of training cycles of Institutes of L’Hospitalet. Gathered in the Barradas auditorium, the students discovered how stem cells, induced from Parkinson’s disease patients, help us to investigate new treatments for this disease. The conference also served to explain the roles of the various members of a research group -main researchers, lab managers, technicians, doctoral students…- and how they coordinate to jointly carry out research projects.
The Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBELL) is a biomedical research center created in 2004. It is participated by the Bellvitge University Hospital and the Viladecans Hospital of the Catalan Institute of Health, the Catalan Institute of Oncology, the University of Barcelona and the City Council of L’Hospitalet de Llobregat.
IDIBELL is a member of the Campus of International Excellence of the University of Barcelona HUBc and is part of the CERCA institution of the Generalitat de Catalunya. In 2009 it became one of the first five Spanish research centers accredited as a health research institute by the Carlos III Health Institute. In addition, it is part of the “HR Excellence in Research” program of the European Union and is a member of EATRIS and REGIC. Since 2018, IDIBELL has been an Accredited Center of the AECC Scientific Foundation (FCAECC).