Experimentos con cobayas podrían sustituirse por simulaciones informáticas

Escrito por La Razon.

experimentos.con.cobayas

Un estudio del Centro de Regulación Genómica (CRG) ha demostrado que las simulaciones por ordenador pueden servir para predecir la mejor diana para fármacos y tratamientos, lo que podría suponer un método sustitutivo de los experimentos con cobayas.


Según ha explicado hoy el CRG en un comunicado, el avance de la bioinformática en los últimos años ofrece la posibilidad de simular sistemas biológicos complejos, con recreaciones que permiten realizar millones de experimentos a la vez e identificar las proteínas que podrían ser las dianas más interesantes para nuevos fármacos.
Así, investigadores del CRG han combinado en un estudio el trabajo experimental y modelado por ordenador, lo que da "nuevas perspectivas y vías de investigación que nuestro cerebro nunca habría podido imaginar", ha considerado una de las científicas encargadas del estudio, Cristina Kiel.
El estudio, que publicará mañana la revista Science Signaling, analiza mediante este nuevo método cómo la desregulación de determinadas proteínas está implicada en muchas enfermedades humanas, como el cáncer, y supone un gran avance en el impulso de la biología computacional, según sus responsables.

Member States CORDIS News

The 'virtual human' healthcare model

2009-07-01
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A revolution in healthcare treatment and diagnosis may be imminent with a pan-European personalised healthcare project, the Virtual Physiological Human (VPH), a Network of Excellence (NoE). Funded with EUR 72 million under the 'Information and communication technologies' Theme of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), the VPH aims to create an entire framework to deliver personalised patient computer models for the predictive healthcare of the future. Success could significantly limit the need for animal testing and patient drug trials.

A total of 13 institutions from 7 countries are involved in the VPH network. The partners hope that once their 'personalised healthcare framework' has been created, a wide range of doctors, scientists and researchers will be able to virtually investigate the human body as a single complex organism.

The VPH project will also create a constantly expanding knowledge database, which will be used to develop better patient diagnosis and treatment.

A postgraduate VPH training programme at the University of Nottingham in the UK will help scientists from diverse disciplines to carry out collaborative studies across the EU. Mathematicians and medical researchers who use mathematical modelling will work together to find solutions to complex biomedical problems, for example. Researchers from academia and industry will meet this week to present technical problems relating to regenerative medicine, particularly those involving epithelial cells in the skin, bladder, lungs, heart and breast.

It is hoped that the study groups will develop new theoretical illness models that may eventually form the basis for new research projects.

Dr Bindi Brook of the University of Nottingham's School of Mathematical Sciences said, 'This study group is one of the prototypes for the sort of collaborative study which will be a key feature of our new VPH training programme. The course will allow postgraduates to train within the VPH network of European universities and, crucially, to access and contribute to a virtual VPH academy online.'

The VPH project may revolutionise medical healthcare in the future. Employing emerging technologies such as genomics means that researchers in all areas can make use of enormous amounts of crucial and detailed physiological data. At the same time, advances in computer and information technology will make it easier for this information to be used to create genetic profiles of patients. It is hoped that over the next 10 years these advances will include treatments for both cancer and HIV/AIDS.

For more information, please visit:

University of Nottingham:
http://www.nottingham.ac.uk

VPH NoE:
http://www.vph-noe.eu/

For more information on the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in EU-funded health research, please click:
here


Category: Projects
Information Source: University of Nottingham
Document Reference: Based on information from the University of Nottingham