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Workshops to promote synergies

With the aim of identifying synergies and promoting collaboration among the regions that participate in Interbio, Biocat has organized a number of workshops, scientific seminars and symposia over these two years. These events included one held in Barcelona in May 2012 entitled The role of platforms and facilities in translational research to discuss the origins, current situation and future challenges of technology platforms in translational research, business models and strategies, and to assess the synergies they offer with regard to Contract Research Organizations (CRO) and private facilities; as well as Forging Partnerships, which brought together scientists from organizations with links to the project —Paul Sabatier University in Toulouse, the Foundation of the Autonomous Region of Valencia for the Urban Innovation and Knowledge Economy, the Lisbon Institute for Chemical and Biological Technology, the Bordeaux Institute of Biological Science and Biocat— to identify possible collaborations and exchanges in two thematic areas: drug discovery and design, and regenerative medicine and stem cells.

Noteworthy among these events are the workshops on nanobiotechnology and information technology for biology and health held by Biocat to raise awareness and encourage collaboration among the regions participating in the Interbio project, and to identify common needs (facilities, funding, etc.) in two areas, nanotechnology and information technology applied to health.

Moreover, in order to expand and facilitate public/private associations and increase transfer of results to companies, a white book was published: From Research to Market: Key Issues of Technology transfer from public research centers. This publication, which can be viewed on either the Interbio or Biocat website, provides users with information on the specifics of public research centers regarding protection policies and the regulatory framework that may affect the technology transfer process, and a description of the stages and steps to follow for companies interested in marketing a technology from a public research center. The book also provides a general overview of the most important sources for identifing technology with potential and explains the key problems that must be taken into account.

For Nerea Alonso, this project “has led to synergies that have been highly favorable for the scientific community as a whole and has consolidated its place as a means of exchange and a meeting point for these five European territories, which has allowed it to benefit the whole community of students, researchers and companies in the BioRegion of Catalonia.” The success of Interbio has been rewarded with the European Commission’s approval of a second part of the project, Transbio Sudoe (The southern European transnational cluster) with the key aim of consolidating and growing the Interbio network and making it the southern European cluster. The priorities of Transbio Sudoe 2013-2014 are to foster transversality, transdisciplinarity and technology transfer in order to boost innovation in the field of biotechnology and health and thus promote the creation and development of new businesses.

By Isabel Muntané

This spring saw the close of Interbio, a collaboration project carried out by five European regions with funds from the European Commission’s...