La AECC presenta “Nuevos pro-fármacos inteligentes selectivos contra tumores”

Imagen: Emeterio Suárez

El Dr. Romén Carrillo Fumero, ha sido beneficiario de una ayuda-contrato por valor de 135.000 euros y una duración de tres años.

La Asociación Española Contra el Cáncer y la Universidad de La Laguna, presentaron el proyecto de investigación del Dr. Romén Carrillo Fumero “Nuevos pro-fármacos inteligentes selectivos contra tumores”. El acto tuvo lugar en el Salón de Actos del Instituto Universitario Bio-Orgánica Antonio González y lo presidieron D. Antonio Martinón, Rector Magnífico de la Universidad de La Laguna, D. Manuel Norte, Director del Instituto Universitario de Bio-orgánica, D.  Juan Julio Fernández, Presidente AECC Santa Cruz de Tenerife, D. Francisco Almeida, Vicerrector de Investigación de la Universidad de La Laguna y Dª Isabel Oriol, Presidenta de la Fundación Científica de la AECC.

El Dr. Carrillo con este proyecto intenta que el fármaco sea capaz de distinguir entre tejidos sanos y enfermos y que solo ataque a estos últimos (por eso los llaman inteligentes). La manera de llevar a cabo el proyecto será utilizar pro-fármacos: estos son moléculas inocuas, sin actividad, hasta llegar al tejido enfermo, donde son capaces de transformarse en el fármaco activo. Los resultados preliminares realizados con células tumorales son prometedores. Por último cabe destacar que la fabricación de estos nuevos fármacos se intenta realizar de la manera más sencilla y económica posible, para que, en caso de que el proyecto sea exitoso, conseguir un proceso industrial asequible y barato

Para el Dr. Carrillo esta financiación ha supuesto no solo una ayuda vital en momentos tan complicados para la ciencia española, sino especialmente un honor y un orgullo, porque una asociación que representa valores tan importantes para la sociedad española, haya confiado en mi proyecto para que pueda contribuir con mi humilde aportación para combatir esta enfermedad.




Tras la explicación, el investigador aprovechó la ocasión para hacer un llamamiento de apoyo al a investigación. También agradeció a la asociación que le ha becado: “Si yo estoy aquí es porque la AECC creyó en mí y financió el proyecto. Y tras ella están los voluntarios que aportan su dinero e, incluso, los enfermos”.

Presentación de la AECC

El acto estuvo presidido por el rector de la ULL, Antonio Martinón, que cerró la sesión con una intervención en la cual se sumó a la petición dirigida a los poderes públicos acerca de una mayor financiación para la ciencia. “Cuesta mucho trabajo poner en marcha un equipo y que acabe siendo puntero, y se puede retroceder todo lo avanzado en muy poco tiempo”.

Señaló, en este sentido, que junto con el vicerrector de Investigación, Francisco Almeida, que también estuvo presente en el acto, se estaba tratado de motivar a los investigadores de la ULL a presentarse a más convocatorias europeas y ya se ha logrado doblar el número de solicitudes con respecto al año pasado. “Precisamente porque hay menos recursos, debemos ser más exigentes con la investigación y a ser lo suficientemente competitivos”.

En el acto también participó Enrique Quintero, jefe del Servicio de Aparato Digestivo del Hospital Universitario de Canarias y profesor de Medicina en la ULL, que actualmente colabora en dos proyectos de investigación también financiados por la AECC.

El primero, iniciado en 2009, es un estudio para evaluar la eficacia de un test no invasivo de detección de cáncer de colon alternativo a la colonoscopia. Han participado 60.000 personas de toda España y 17 hospitales de 8 comunidades autónomas. Con casi un millón de euros de financiación, seguirá activo hasta 2020. Recordó que el cáncer de colon es el tumor maligno más frecuente en España, con 38.000 casos cada año, pero que si se detecta a tiempo, hay altos índices de supervivencia.

El segundo proyecto de la AECC en el que está involucrado Quintero cuenta con la participación de cuatro centros nacionales: la Universidad de Vigo, el Hospital universitario de Alicante, el Hospital Clínico de Barcelona y el HUC.  Pretende detectar e identificar bio-marcadores que puedan predecir el diagnóstico y el pronóstico de cáncer de colon y cuenta con 1,2 millones de euros.

Quintero destacó el rigor de estas convocatorias, muy difíciles de conseguir y con tribunales muy exigentes tanto en la concesión como en el seguimiento de los proyectos. También se refirió a la falta de fondos en la actualidad: “La investigación biomédica pasa por extraordinarias dificultades por los recortes de los ochos últimos años: para el año que viene, la inversión prevista será un 34% menos de la que era en 2009”.

Tras la presentación de los casos de éxito de Carrillo y Quintero, participó la presidenta de la Fundación Científica de la AECC, Isabel Oriol, quien presentó las líneas maestras de plan estratégico de su organización para el periodo 2016-2020 y recordó que este mes estaban abiertas las convocatorias de todas las ayudas de investigación que concede la asociación.

Oriol señaló que la AECC apuesta por la investigación por ser “una inversión, no un gasto”, y porque está constatado que cuanto más se ha explorado científicamente la enfermedad, mayores cuotas de supervivencia se han logrado. Así, se ha pasado de un índice de supervivencia del 25% en 1953 al 60% en 2014, y se espera llegar al 75% en los próximos veinte años.

El nuevo plan estratégico ha variado la estructura de su programa de ayudas. Ahora hay dos grandes líneas, una destinada a proyectos y otra a personas; dentro de cada una de ellas, hay diferentes convocatorias específicas: para generar ideas, para grandes proyectos interdisciplinares, para investigadores de diferentes niveles académicos, etc.

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