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News U27

News U27

Researchers of two NANBIOSIS units success in the Third Millennium Awards

Researchers of two NANBIOSIS units success in the Third Millennium Awards: the Young Research Talent award to Julia Ramirez (NANBIOSIS U27) and the Research and Future Award to the NFP group (NANBIOSIS U9)

Last November 8, four initiatives received the highest award in the eighth edition of the HERALDO contest Third Millennium Awards which represent the recognition of the Aragonese community from the youngest to the most consolidated trajectories in knowledge transfer, innovation, and scientific dissemination.

The Paraninfo of the University of Zaragoza hosted this event in which researchers CIBER-BBN – NANBIOSIS were recognised this year:

The Films and Nanostructured Particles (NFP) group of INMA and CIBER-BBN, directed by Jesús Santamaría and coordinating NANBIOSIS U9 “Synthesis of Nanoparticles Unit“, was recognised with the Research and Future Award: Manufacturing drugs inside tumors.

Julia Ramírez, from the BSiCoS group of the I3A and CIBER-BBN, coordinator of unit 27 “High Performance Computing Unit” of NANBIOSIS, received the “Young Research Talent” award for her work in the biomedical signal processing.

The Third Millennium Awards’ objective is to recognize the work of people, research centers and groups, institutions and companies in Aragon in three main axes:

Innovation:  Technological Innovation Award

Divulgation:  Best Science and Technology Dissemination Initiative

Research:

– Young Research Talent Awards

– Transfer of Science and University to Business Award

– Research and future award

Julia Ramirez

During her doctorate at Unizar (2017), she developed a methodology to quantify morphological variations in the electrocardiogram (ECG). This quantification led to the T-wave morphology restoration (TMR) index, which was shown to be a stronger predictor of sudden cardiac death than standard clinical indices.

After her doctorate, she moved to work at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) in London. This was a key point in her research career because she broadened her knowledge in engineering, gaining experience in genetics and bioinformatics. During those years, she obtained two highly competitive European Postdoctoral Fellowships: a WHRI-Academy Cofund (2017) and a Marie Skłodowska-Curie (2018). In recognition of her work, in April 2020, QMUL promoted her to Lecturer in Genetics and Cardiovascular Data Science.

Since January of this year, Julia Ramírez has been back in Zaragoza thanks to a María Zambrano International Talent Attraction Scholarship, giving up the highly competitive Category 2 Talent Attraction of the Community of Madrid, which she had also been awarded. In total, the researcher from Zaragoza has contributed to her field of research with 32 peer-reviewed publications in different disciplines, including bioengineering, cardiology and genetics (13 of her as first author).

In her speech recognized “being in a happy moment”, for being back in Zaragoza, “being away is not always easy” and also for collecting an award for her work that always motivates her to continue forward in a career as the researcher, long and complicated.

The Films and Nanostructured Particles (NFP) group:

«This initiative is the work of many people. It has been a fantastic trip”, said Jesús Santamaría, Principal researcher of the NFP Group

The NFP of the Group was created in 2007 by researchers from different backgrounds, with the aim of concentrating efforts in the development and application of nanostructured materials with an emphasis on nanoparticles, nanoporous interfaces and hybrid systems. Its members have made pioneering developments in the synthesis of nanomaterials and their application in fields ranging from medicine to energy and the environment.

The award recognised the group’s work in the cancer research throughout the project CADENCE (Catalytic Dual-Function Devices Against Cancer), that aims to find a new way to fight this disease, avoiding the problems associated with conventional chemotherapy and its devastating side effects. Three fundamental problems had to be solved. First, developing suitable catalysts (catalytic nanoparticles) capable of operating inside a tumour and manufacturing toxic molecules there. Alternatively, nanoparticles can operate in other ways (by heating remotely) and also produce tumour death. It is also necessary to selectively deliver these catalysts to the tumour, avoiding their accumulation in other organs. Finally, these catalysts must be selectively activated inside the tumour. The answers obtained to each of these problems have opened new paths in the fight against cancer: Catalysts capable of manufacturing toxic substances from within the tumour are used, minimising their diffusion through the body.

This research was funded for five years through an ERC Advanced Grant project endowed with 2.5 million euros. The ERC Advanced Grants are the most prestigious European projects, awarded by the European Research Council in a highly competitive international competition.

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Conversations with women scientists: Cardiology

Esther Pueyo, member of the BSICoS group, which coordinates NANBIOSIS U27 “High Performance Computing” from CIBER-BBN and I3A-UZ, participes with Lina Badimon, professor at the CSIC and group leader at the CIBERCV in the first of a series of videos where two women scientists share their experiences, prepared by the Scientific Culture and Innovation Unit (UCC+i) of the CIBER

Both researchers work in the field of Cardiology and share their passion for science and their vocation to help patients. In this video they talk in depth about their career, their difficulties, their achievements, and what their vision is about the future of women in Science and Cardiology..

“The message to university students is that they can change the future: this is what is known but you can contribute to the knowledge”`, points out Lina Badimon, who is in charge of Women in Cardiology at the European Society of Cardiology. “Women are the majority in the first stages of the scientific career but, then, women do not advance at the speed that men do and this is the point difficult to overcome for women” states Esther Pueyo.

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Women in Signal Processing: Raquel Bailón

The International Day of Women and Girls in Science on February 11 honor women’s significant achievements in science and place a much-needed focus on girls entering Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) careers. We want to take this day to congratulate all the women scientists, especially to our scientists at NANBIOSIS ICTS.

In this occasion we want to put the spotlight on Raquel Bailon, researcher of Bsicos Group coordinating NANBIOSIS Unit 27 of High-Performance Computing form CIBER-BBN and University of Zaragoza-I3A, who last month has been highlighted by Inside Signal Processing Newsletter.

In the interview Dr. Raquel Bailon talks about her motivations and aspirations when she was a child and how she chose to develop her career in the field of Signal Processing, explains her passion for biomedical signal processing research and the relevance of her work for society.

Dr. Bailon also gives wise and practical advices to young scientists/engineers in the field of signal processing. Raquel stresses the need of having a deep knowledge of the field of application, working in a multidisciplinary team and promoting collaboration and clinical translation of research, without frontiers

To access the full interview, click here

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Pablo Laguna talking about Physiologically driven biomedical signal processing at the Autonomous University of San Luis Potosí

Zaragoza, October 14th, 2021 Bsicos.i3a.es

Pablo Laguna, Scientific Director of NANBIOSIS U27 High Performance Computing and researcher of BSICoS Group of I3A-UNIZAR and CIBER-BBN gave a talk about Physiologically driven biomedical signal processing at the Faculty of Physics at the Autonomous University of San Luis Potosí (UASLP) in Mexico. He explaned how biomedical signals convey information about biological systems and can emanate from sources of as varied origins as electrical, mechanical or chemical.

In particular, biomedical signals can provide relevant information on the function of the human body. This information, however, may not be apparent in the signal due to measurement noise, presence of signals coming from other interacting subsystems, or simply because it is not visible to the human eye. Signal processing is usually required to extract the relevant information from biomedical signals and convert it into meaningful data that physicians can interpret. In this respect, knowledge of the physiology behind the biomedical measurements under analysis is fundamental. Not considering the underlying physiology may lead, in the best case, to processing methods that do not fully exploit the biomedical signals being analyzed and thus extract only partially their meaningful information and, in the worst case, to processing methods that distort or even remove the information of interest in those signals.

Biomedical Signal Processing (BSP) tools are typically applied on just one particular signal recorded at a unique level of the functional system under investigation and with limited knowledge of the interrelationships with other components of that system. In most instances though, BSP can benefit from an analysis in which more than one signal is evaluated at a time (multi-modal processing), different levels of function are considered (multi-scale processing) and scientific input from different disciplines is incorporated (multi-disciplinary processing). For each problem at hand, the BSP researcher should decide up to which extent information from a number of signals, functional levels or disciplines needs to be incorporated to solve the problem.

As an example, a multi-scale model may be necessary in cases where, for instance, a deeper knowledge of the cell and tissue mechanisms underpinning alterations in a body surface signal is required, whereas a simplified single-scale model may be sufficient in other cases, as when investigating the relationship between two signals measured on the whole human body. At present, there are many biomedical signals that can be acquired and processed using relatively low-cost systems, which makes their use in the clinics very extensive. In particular, non-invasive signals readily accessible to physicians are increasingly being used to improve the diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of a variety of diseases. The presentation aims to illustrate the role played by BSP in the analysis of cardiovascular signals. A set of applications will be presented where BSP contributes to improve our knowledge on atrial and ventricular arrhythmias, the modulation of cardiac activity by the autonomic nervous system (ANS) and the interactions between cardiac and respiratory signals.

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Cristina Pérez, Young Investigator Award at the STAFF congress

Cristina Pérez, has been the winner of the Young Researcher Award (YIA) at the STAFF congress held in Sirolo (Italy), from Septembre 1 to 4, for her work entitled “Characterization of impaired ventricular repolarization by quantification of QT delay after heart rate changes in stress test”

Cristina Pérez is a researcher from BSICoS. Research Group that coordinates NANBIOSIS ICTS Unit 27 “High Performance Computing”, led by PAblo Laguna (from I3A-UNIZAR and CIBER-BBN)

Further information at BSICoS Website

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Diego García, finalist in the Young Researcher Award at the CinC

Researchers from BSICoS Research GroupNANBIOSIS U27 (from I3A-UNIZAR and CIBER-BBN presented their works in the Computing in Cardiology (CinC) Conference, held in Brno (Czech Republic) on 12-15 September.

Diego García was Young Researcher Award (YIA) finalist with the work “Ventilatory Thresholds Estimation Based on ECG-derived Respiratory Rate”.

The purpose of this work is to study the feasibility of estimating the first and second ventilatory thresholds (VT1 and VT2, respectively) by using electrocardiogram (ECG)-derived respiratory rate during exercise testing.

The computation was performed by the ICTS NANBIOSIS, specifically by the High Performance Computing Unit of the CIBER-BBN at the I3A-University of Zaragoza.

Further information at BSICoS Website

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The relevance of biomedical signal processing in the understanding of biological systems

Within the framework of NeoCom2021 Jesús Lázaro, researcher of BSICoS group and NANBIOSIS U27 High Performance Computing form CIBER-BBN and I3A-UZ will explain how biomedical signal processing can be used to improve the current understanding of the functioning of biological systems, conditions related to the cardiovascular, respiratory, and autonomic nervous systems, as well as their interactions.

Prof. Lázaro will review the progress of the WECARMON European Project whose objective is the development of a system for long-term monitoring (months / years) of patients with cardiorespiratory diseases.

NEOCOM: As every year, the Territorial Demarcation of the COIT in Aragon and the Association of Telecommunications Engineers of Aragon collaborate with the Association of Telecommunications Students of the University of Zaragoza (AATUZ) in the organization of the NEOcom conferences that bring ICT companies closer to the university field. All talks are broadcasted on live on the AATUZ YouTube channel (without registration)

Jesús Lázaro and Wecarmon Project

Related news:

NANBIOSIS U27 researchers working in an App for the early diagnosis of covid-19 through mobile phones

Wearable Armband Device for Daily Life Electrocardiogram Monitoring

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Electrocardiogram-Derived Tidal Volume During Treadmill Stress Test

Researchers of BSICoS Group and NANBIOSIS ICTS U27 High Performance Computing from CIBER-BBN and I3A-UZ have published a new article in the scientific journal IEEE Transactions Biomedical Engineering. proposing a new method to estimate tidal volume during stress test based only on the electrocardiogram signal.

Electrocardiogram (ECG) has been regarded as a source of respiratory information with the main focus in the estimation of the respiratory rate. Although little research concerning the estimation of tidal volume (TV) has been conducted, there are several ECG-derived features that have been related with TV in the literature, such as ECG-derived respiration, heart rate variability or respiratory rate.

In this work, resarchers exploited these features for estimating TV using a linear model. 25 young (33.4 ± 5.2 years) healthy male volunteers were recruited for performing a maximal (MaxT) and a submaximal (SubT) treadmill stress test, which were conducted in different days. Both tests were automatically segmented in stages attending to the heart rate. Afterwards, a subject-specific TV model was calibrated for each stage, employing features from MaxT, and the model was later used for estimating the TV in SubT.

During exercise, the different proposed approaches led to relative fitting errors lower than 14% in most of the cases and than 6% in some of them. Low achieved fitting errors suggest that TV can be estimated from ECG during a treadmill stress test. The results suggest that it is possible to estimate TV during exercise using only ECG-derived features.

Article of reference:

Milagro, J; Hernando, D; Lázaro, J; Casajús, J A; Garatachea, N; Gil, E; Bailón, R. Electrocardiogram-Derived Tidal Volume During Treadmill Stress Test
IEEE Transactions Biomedical Engineering, 67 (1), 2020. DOI: 10.1109/TBME.2019.2911351

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Outstanding Young Researcher Award at ICESS 2021 to Konstantinos Mountris (NANBIOSIS U27).

Konstantinos Mountris researcher from the BSICoS group of CIBER-BBN and I3A at the University of Zaragoza has been granted the Outstanding Young Researcher Award at the International Conference on Computational & Experimental Engineering and Sciences (ICCES) in relation with the work Radial Point Interpolation Mixed Collocation (RPIMC) Method for The Solution of Reaction-Diffusion Equation in Cardiac Eletrophysiology (for the simulation of myocardial infarction).

This work was already recognized in the Congress of Computing in Cardiology (CinC) held recently where Konstantinos Mountris and Esther Pueyo have received the Maastricht Simulation Award (MSA)Konstantinos Mountris acknowledged the contribution of NANBIOSIS U27 High Performance Computing :“using the HPC services of NANBIOSIS U27 we were able to validate the RPIMC method as a promising alternative to Finite Element Method performing large-scale simulations of myocardial infarction in biventricular swine models

Related news: Understanding human heart behaviour with mathematics and engineering.

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NANBIOSIS at the I3A I Conference – IX Conference of Young Researchers

On December 11 the I I3A Conference will take place (online). This Conference is a meeting whose main focus will be the Young Researchers Conference, which is now in its IX edition, and in which there will be scientific conferences that will complete the program. A day dedicated to highlighting the research work in I3A institute of University of Zaragoza.


The BSiCoS group from I3A and CIBER-BBN, coordinator of NANBIOSIS U27 High Performance Computing will be at the I3A Conference, where participatien in the Young Researchers Meeting:

Pablo Armañac: The capacity of the baroreflex as an identification index of ICU patients prepared for weaning

Cristina Pérez: From the stress test to the prediction of sudden cardiac death using non-invasive markers

Saúl Palacios: Periodic dynamics of repolarization as a predictor of sudden death in patients with chronic heart failure

  • Date: Friday, December 11
  • Time: 9 am – 6 pm
  • Online: Via YouTube

The scheduled agenda for the meeting:

      9.00 – 9.15 Inauguration (Councilor for Science, Research and the Knowledge Society, Maru Díaz; acting vice-rector for Scientific Policy, Blanca Ros; director of I3A, Pablo Laguna

      9.15 – 9.30 “I3A Distinction”

      9.30-10.30 Opening conference by Manuel González Bedia “Overview of Spanish scientific policy”

    10.30-11.30 Youth presentations (2 presentations)

    11.00-12.00 Poster session

    12.00-13.00 Youth presentations (4 presentations)

    13.00-14.00 Lunch

    14.30-15.30 Lecture by Juan Domingo TardósHow to transfer the software resulting from your research?”

    15.30-16.30 Youth presentations (4 presentations)

    16.30-17.30 Closing conference by Elías Cueto “Artificial scientists: teaching robots to do science”.

    17.30-18.00 Delivery of awards, scholarship diplomas and bridge contracts, and “Distincion I3A”:

                                – Awards for the best presentations by young researchers (one per division)

                                – Delivery diploma of recognition of Bridge Contracts

                                – Delivery diploma of recognition of TFM Scholarships

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