Researching for a better world

26 June 2018

From yesterday, June 24th and until Friday 29th, the 68th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting will take place, this year dedicated to Medicine/Physiology.

The researchers nominated by Columbus constitute the 50% of accepted Latin Americans who live and study in the region, and 28% of all accepted Latin Americans, including those who study and work outside the region. These talented researchers come from universities in Argentina (1), Colombia (1), Chile (1), Mexico (4) and Spain (1). From Sunday to Friday, there will be an intense program of conferences, round tables, bilateral meetings and multiple enriching exchanges with colleagues sharing passion and interests.

Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings are held every year since 1951 and are designed as a forum for exchange, networking and inspiration. A world of possibilities opens up to the participants: some confirm what they already knew; others find orientation for the next steps in their scientific career. Thanks to the agreement signed in 2017 with the Lindau Foundation, Columbus is proud to be able to contribute to open up perspectives to the young representatives of its member universities and thus increase the participation of Latin America in this global festival of science.

In the following lines, we present the profiles of the eight young talents of Columbus member universities that have been selected to participate in this Meeting.


Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León - Mexico

Rodolfo Morales Avalos is a MD Surgeon and Obstetrician of the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo Leon (UANL) in Mexico and is currently a third-year resident doctor specializing in Orthopedics and Traumatology at the University Hospital "Dr. José Eleuterio González " from the same university. With more than 40 scientific publications to his credit, Rodolfo is a member of the National System of Researchers (SNI 1) in Mexico attached to the National Council of Science and Technology - CONACYT -.

For Rodolfo, participating in an event of this magnitude “represents for me a platform for the generation of research ideas with researchers from various fields of Medicine, this with the purpose of diversifying the fields of knowledge in which we could participate”. In the same way, he believes that “being able to live with researchers of such experience would be a personal motivation to continue carrying out clinical research at a high level. My intention is to promote scientific research in my environment and my country when trying to train new researchers to move from being a user to a generator of knowledge”. Rodolfo aims to promote institutional collaborations for the realization of clinical studies in the area of clinical anatomy and musculoskeletal system and establish formal agreements with other institutions or universities for the realization of academic exchanges with the purpose of sharing ideas and lines of research.


Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León – México

Francisco is a tenth-semester student of the School of Medicine of the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo Leon. He is the student coordinator of the Undergraduate Research Fellows program of the Research Subdirectorate of this university and member of the Neuroscience, Anatomy and Endocrinology research groups of the UANL School of Medicine. He recently completed a research stay in the Knowledge and Evaluation Research (KER) Unit of the Mayo Clinic (United States).

Francisco always wanted to have the opportunity to meet the Nobel Prizes. Already with a career started in science, knowing the laureates and other young researchers who will attend this great event is for him, besides being a dream come true, a huge opportunity for academic and personal growth; an opportunity to create new friendships and lay the foundations for future collaborations. For him, this event will act as a catalyst in his motivation to continue on the path of science and continue to generate knowledge with the sole purpose of improving the quality of patient care.

His expectations about this event are to find an extremely motivating environment in the scientific aspect and a deep coexistence based on the exchange of knowledge and ideas. He hopes to be able to speak with many young researchers and lay the foundations for collaborations in the future. In addition to listening in depth to the ideas and advice that the Nobel prizes can offer to the participants to follow their scientific careers.


Universidad de Colima - México

Juan is a Pharmaceutical Chemist and Biologist graduated at the Universidad de Colima, where he began research work on the Dengue virus. At the end of his career, he entered the Master of Physiological Sciences at the Faculty of Medicine of the the university, working with Chagas disease, where he tested in a murine model broad spectrum drugs as possible treatment alternatives. During this period he had the chance to contact Dr. Igor Pottosin and Dr. Oxana Dobrovinskaya, where he started working with ion channels in leukemia. He is currently finishing his PhD in Physiological Sciences with the thesis topic entitled "Identification of potassium channels in lymphocytes of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, healthy lymphocytes and cell lines." Under the guidance of Dr. Oxana Dobrovinskaya and co-advised by the Dr. Igor Pottosin.

He has presented his research work in 17 national and 4 international congresses. He has completed four research stays at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and the Medical Research Unit in Oncological Diseases in Mexico, among others. The research works have generated 6 articles in indexed journals.

His main motivations to attend this event are to seek contacts for the laboratory and look for the opportunity for a post-doctorate. He is excited to meet the most promising minds in the scientific field since they will be his future colleagues and contacts abroad, so it is essential to start with relationships early, seeking mutual collaboration by joining efforts to combat common problems. One of the main expectations of this meeting is to have the opportunity to talk with Erwin Neher and Bert Sakmann, the parents of Patch Clamp, a technique that has fascinated him, so it would be a great honor for him to know them.


Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey – ITESM

Ana is a medical student at the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey - ITESM. He is a member of the research groups in Neuroscience and Obstetrics and Gynecology at her university. In addition, he is a member of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons.

Ana believes that these meetings represent a unique opportunity to meet and form relationships with researchers from around the world. She also considers that this meeting will facilitate the creation of interdisciplinary collaborations that enrich future research projects.

She hopes that during her participation in this event she will be able to exchange knowledge and advice with the participants about how to encourage research. Likewise, she is anxious for the information that the winners can provide about how they managed to obtain one of the most prestigious merits in the Medical field.


Universidad de Talca – Chile

Ariela is a Bioinformatics Engineer from the Universidad de Talca and has a PhD in Applied Sciences from the same University. His research area lies in modeling and molecular simulation of biological systems. She is currently assistant professor at the Center for Bioinformatics and Molecular Simulation at the University of Talca. Ariela has received the "International Rising Talent" award by the L'Oréal-UNESCO Prize For Women in Science in 2015.

Ariela believes that as a young scientist in Latin America it is an honor and an enormous opportunity to participate in the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting 2018. Recently, she has begun her research group focused on the study of proteins, located in cell membranes, using sophisticated tools of structural biology and bioinformatics. In this sense, the meeting with Nobel laureates will be a unique opportunity to learn to focus their work in science. She will be able to learn about new research that will allow her to expand her areas of interest, and interact with leading scientists who have demonstrated the importance of pursuing a scientific career.

She also considers that being chosen among a select group of young scientists to attend this event is a great recognition. She believes that this experience will mark an important milestone in her professional career. The fact of interacting with researchers, from different generations and working in different areas of science, will be an enriching experience that believes will allow her to learn from the work of already established scientists and at the same time establish collaboration networks with outstanding young people who start their career as well as her.


Universidad de Alcalá - España

Laura is studying her PhD in Cell Signaling in the Department of Systems Biology (Physiology) of the Universidad de Alcalá, after having completed a Master in Neuroscience at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid and a Bachelor's Degree in Health Biology at the Universidad de Alcalá. Her research focuses on the study of the physiopathological mechanisms responsible for some types of chronic pain, especially in peripheral neuropathies (those that occur as a result of a nerve injury). To do this, she uses animal models that allow her to study, using electrophysiology and molecular biology techniques, part of the symptomatology that patients show. She is a member of the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP).

Laura did not know the existence of this event until recently, but for her it seems a fantastic idea that researchers who are in the early stages of their scientific careers can meet and talk with numerous Nobel laureates. It is a great honor for Laura to have been selected to attend this meeting, and she intends to take advantage of it from the first minute to publicize her research and collect all the possible feed-back. She considers that dedicating oneself to research is very sacrificial and with many frustration moments that from time to time are gratified with opportunities like these.

Laura states that Lindau is a great opportunity to meet not only great minds recognized in a relaxed atmosphere, but other students who share the same passion for science and could be collaborators in the future. She hopes that this opportunity will be important for the development of her career and marks a before and after in her way of doing science and seeing the world.


Universidad del Norte – Colombia

Maria Camila is student at Shool of Medicine of the Universidad del Norte in Colombia. She is currently doing her clinical internship in Valencia, Spain. She is part of the Molecular Medicine and Genetics groups of Universidad del Norte, reporting clinical cases seen and treated in the genetics clinic during her internship in Colombia. These cases will be presented at the XV Colombian Congress and IX International Congress of Human Genetics. Her thesis is entitled "Quality of life in the chronic phase of Chikungunya virus disease in people over 18 years."

Maria Camila believes that this meeting is a great opportunity to get to know Nobel Prize laureates, the people who for so many years have inspired young researchers like her. She wants to make the most of this space to learn as much as she can from the lectures presented, the scientists' answers to the questions that participants will ask about their lives, achievements and experiences over the years, and the advice they can give to young scientists. She adds: "this is what this meeting is about, enjoy this interesting and exciting path; research, discover, learn, share results, make friends and contribute to the world with as many good things as possible".


Universidad Nacional de Córdoba – Argentina

Claudio is a Biochemist from the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba. He has obtained his Doctorate in the Research Center in Clinical Biochemistry and Immunology (CIBICI). He was an assistant professor in the Department of Clinical Biochemistry and Immunology of the Faculty of Chemical Sciences of the UNC and is making his postdoctoral fellowship at the Francis Crick Institute in London, United Kingdom.

For Claudio, the meeting in Lindau represents a unique opportunity not only to witness presentations or classes of Nobel Prize-winning researchers, but also, gives him the possibility to participate actively in discussions and exchanges of ideas and experiences with them. The above, together with the diversity of actors, from scientists to journalists and representatives of the industry, makes the event an invaluable experience and represents its main motivation.

Regarding his expectations of this meeting, Claudio seeks to enrich himself through the cultural exchange that represents the selection of 600 young scientists from different countries and research areas. Then, he plans to strengthen his network of contacts and hopes to establish future collaborations, since he is convinced that the final product of an idea has more impact and is more elaborated when it emerges considering different points of view and working together.


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