The Barcelona Medical Photonics Network: united to improve the health and well-being of society

- Research

As the research institute of the Germans Trias i Pujol Hospital, the IGTP is one of 8 health research institutes that has joined the ICFO to consolidate a state-of-the-art bench to bedside Barcelona Photonics Technology Network. The Medical Photonics Network of Barcelona was presented on 18 February, it aims to promote the research and development activities in photonics being carried out in the Barcelona area by formalizing the long-running relationship between the ICFO and its biomedical and clinical partners.

Because of its exceptional versatility, precision and non-invasive nature, photonics is playing an increasing role in medical techniques and practices, to the extent that today it is considered a key enabling technology in developing healthcare in Europe. Researchers at the ICFO have extensive expertise in the development of photonic-based technologies for clinical use. After more than a decade in close collaboration with hospitals and specialist doctors in the Barcelona area, the ICFO is formalizing the Barcelona Photonics Technology to enable the expansion of the reach, scope and impact of these critical relationships. The network forms part of the Light for Health program at ICFO, an initiative that counts on the continuing support of the "la Caixa" Foundation.

Photonics to combat breast cancer

The Molecular and Structural Pathology Group at the IGTP, led by Pedro L. Fernández Ruiz, and the Anatomical pathology Service of the hospital are developing a project with the ICFO to investigate molecular and microspectroscopic profiling of breast cancers. The study will help increase molecular typing and aid definition of the best therapies for each type of neoplasm.

With this project the new network aims to have an impact on society on many levels. The main established joint strengths include initiatives in neurology and neurosurgery, neonatal care, ophthalmology, oncology, intensive care monitoring, dermatology, rapid clinical testing, rehabilitation, sports medicine, wellbeing, sleep disorders and anesthesiology, amongst others.

The partner institutions initially participating in this network include: ICFO, Santa Creu i Sant Pau Research Institute, the IDIBAPS, the Sant Joan de Déu Hospital, the VHIR, the VHIO, the Parc Taulí Research Institute, the Pere Virgili Health Park and the IMIM, as well as the IGTP.