Having access to advanced research facilities is a vital part of our pursuit of cutting edge research. We continually invest in resources and improve research facilities to ensure that our team is able to pursue their ideas, undertake research and transfer their knowledge to ensure significant global impact. We have state of the art research facilities across our campuses which are supported by researchers who can advise on areas from experimental set-up to data analysis and visualisation. We also collaborate with many other research institutions and universities to ensure that our researchers have access to the very best facilities in the world.
Biobanked samples: The HUB-ICO-IDIBELL Biobank is a non-profit public institution established with the aim of managing and regulating different collections of biological samples obtained from the Bellvitge University Hospital (HUB), Duran y Reynals Hospital (ICO), and other associated centers, in accordance with current regulations (Law 14/2007, of July 3, on Biomedical Research, and RD 1716/2011, of November 18). The HUB-ICO-IDIBELL Biobank has been authorized by the General Directorate of Health Planning and Research of the Department of Health of the Government of Catalonia and is registered in the National Biobanks Registry of the Carlos III Health Institute in accordance with RD 1716/2011, which establishes the basic requirements for the authorization and operation of Biobanks for biomedical research purposes and the handling of biological samples of human origin. Our group has as a private collection of samples from:
– Post-mortem brain tissue from various regions of a diverse range of neurodegenerative disorders, including control cases without neurological disorders (both fresh-frozen and paraffin-embedded tissue).
– Biofluid samples from living patients: blood, serum, plasma, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) collected from various neurological disorders and control cases.
– Biopsies: skin biopsies from motorneuron disease patients.
SIMOA technology: Our group manages and has partially financed the acquisition of SIMOA SR-X equipment at the IDIBELL scientific platforms. Simoa is an ultra-sensitive immunoassay technology that allow detection of proteins and nucleic acids at lowest possible levels. It’s a simple, flexible, robust, and sensitive multiplex immunoassay platform for measuring biomarkers in most common sample types.
Simoa® Bead Technology presents the ability to detect neurological biomarkers at ultra-low levels, which have traditionally only been detectable in cerebrospinal fluid. The technology has the potential to transform the way brain injuries and diseases are diagnosed.
Animal facilities: The IDIBELL Animal Facility provides support to researchers who need to use laboratory animals (mice, hamsters, and zebrafish) in their research projects. The facility occupies an area of about 800 m2 and is divided into two units: one for housing mice and hamsters, located on the third floor, and another for housing zebrafish, located on the ground floor. The animal facility is registered as a user center with the Generalitat (B-9900010), authorized by the Ministry to house and work with GMOs up to a Biosafety Level II (GMO A/ES/05/I-14 and GMO A/ES/I-15), and accredited by AAALAC (Unit 1155). Researchers working in the animal facility must have a project approved by the IDIBELL Ethics Committee for Animal Experimentation (CEEA) and by the Ethics Committee for Animal Experimentation (CEA) of the Generalitat, in compliance with current national and European legislation (EEC/86/609, RD1201/2005, RD214/1997). Similarly, our group also has acces to University of Barcelona animal facilities.
Our group possesses expertise in employing diverse mouse models for neurodegenerative disorders. These models are currently being utilized in the laboratory to study molecular alterations and explore various therapeutic approaches (pharmacological treatments and drug test):
- mapt-KO model: Homozygous for Mapttm1(EGFP)Klt, Noncarrier
- TARDBP model: B6.C3-Tg(Prnp-TARDBP*Q331K)103Dwc/J
- C9ORF72 model: C57BL/6J-Tg(C9orf72_i3)112Lutzy/J
- APP/PS1 model: B6.Cg-Tg(APPswe,PSEN1dE9)85Dbo/Mmjax
- h-tau model: B6.Cg-Mapttm1(EGFP)Klt Tg(MAPT)8cPdav/J
- Tau P301S (PS19) model: B6;Cg-Tg(Prnp-MAPT*P301S)PS19Vle/J
- Ageing models: wild-type animals C57BL/6J
- NRF2-KO model: B6.129X1-Nfe2l2tm1Ywk/J
Scientific and Technical Services at IDIBELL and the University of Barcelona: They provide a comprehensive array of scientific and technical services to bolster research endeavors across diverse fields. These include a stem cell bank, biostatistics service, bioimaging, bioinformatics service, flow cytometry service, histology service, molecular interactions platforms, and UICEC (Clinical Research and Clinical Trials Unit). These services are tailored to elevate the caliber and influence of research conducted within these institutions.