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Esteve and Neurophar Pompeu Fabra University strengthen their collaboration in research to combat pain

Esteve and Neurophar Pompeu Fabra University strengthen their collaboration in research to combat pain

Esteve   and Neurophar-Pompeu Fabra University (UPF) strengthen their collaboration in the field of research to combat pain, a task promoted through the   ESTEVE-UPF Joint Unit, located at the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park, on UPF's  Mar campus.



The two organizations have been working closely together since 1998, when the Neuropharmacology Laboratory (NeuroPhar)of the Department of Experimental and Health Sciences was founded. The good results achieved during this period have motivated the creation of this joint research unit that focuses its interest on the research and development of new drugs for treating pain.

For  Rafael Maldonado, head of NeuroPhar, " the collaboration with Esteve over 20 years is a beneficial synergy for both organizations. With this new project we hope to progress in our joint research."

In addition, Dr.  Carlos Plata, of Esteve, stated that  "this new joint unit is the integration of the work planned and executed jointly by UPF and ESTEVE's  Discovery and Preclinical Development team, incrementally enhancing the synergies of both centres."

Projects conducted through this activity aim to study  new therapeutic targets at the preclinical level in order to evaluate these new drugs and thus find complementary or alternative strategies to cope with chronic pain conditions that currently have no effective treatments as well as other related processes.

This research line constitutes a priority for both organizations and is endorsed by the publication of six scientific articles in international journals as a result of the collaboration. Additionally, this research field has come to the development of a European project coordinated by UPF in which NeuroPhar and Esteve actively collaborate (NeuroPain). It is also a health priority for the Health Plan of Catalonia, the European Parliament's Interest Group on Brain, Mind and Pain and to patient organizations that are members of Pain Alliance Europe. It is worth noting that approximately  one in five Europeans suffer from chronic pain, which is about 75 million citizens of the European Union, and that  chronic pain is the most common cause (15-20%) of visits to the doctor. Unfortunately, in many cases the available treatments provide only partial improvement, often accompanied by reduced tolerability.

The event was attended by representatives of Esteve, Dr.  Carlos Plata, scientific director; Dr.  José Miguel Vela, director of Drug Discovery and Preclinical Development, and Dr.  Manel Merlos, director of Pharmacology. On behalf of UPF there was the vice-rector for Science Policy and Teaching Staff,  Francesc Posas; Acting Director of the Department of Experimental and Health Sciences, David Comas, and the director of the Neuropharmacology Laboratory,  Rafael Maldonado. Also, the event enjoyed with the attendance of the director of the ESTEVE-UPF Joint Unit,  Miquel A. Martín,  and the researchers of the unit,  Antonio Ortega, Roberto CabreraAurelijus Burokas and  Virginia Mela.

During the meeting on UPF's Mar campus, Esteve delegates visited some of the facilities of the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park (PRBB).