LAB Seminar: Ignasi Barba

Yesterday, Dr. Ignasi Barba made an introduction to Metabonomisc in our Lab seminars. Ignasi Barba is member of the Research Group on Cardiovascular Diseases at the same institution where he is in charge of the Metabomics Unit .

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The crisis at the other side of the Atlantic

Impressive article about the Global Crisis. It pursues the same line of thought Paul Krugman follows (see the article commented in the previous post). Where are we going?

«“Tea parties” mortíferos: … Mientras la Unión Europea salvaba los muebles con un acuerdo de última hora sobre la deuda griega, en Estados Unidos el presidente Barack Obama sigue negociando con la mayoría republicana de la Cámara de Representantes un pacto que evite la suspensión de pagos el próximo 2 de agosto…»

«…El ultraconservador “tea party” se niega a autorizar un aumento de la deuda pública de Estados Unidos si el Gobierno demócrata no se compromete a fuertes recortes sociales. En Europa, el partido conservador portugués llevó a su país al rescate al votar en contra un plan de ajuste que luego tuvo que aprobar, tras ganar unas elecciones anticipadas, con medidas más duras a las que negó al Gobierno socialista…»

«…La condición expuesta por los republicanos para admitir un aumento de la deuda es un compromiso para reducir el déficit fiscal en unos cuatro billones de dólares en diez años (más de 100.000 millones en este ejercicio). Este acuerdo sería asumible por los demócratas, siempre que esta reducción se lograra tanto con aumento de ingresos, como con recorte de gastos. Es decir, que además de eliminar programas de gasto, Obama propone aumentar impuestos a empresas petroleras y a los contribuyentes con más de 250.000 dólares de ingresos anuales…»

«…Ahí es donde ponen la línea roja los republicanos: nada de subir impuestos. El sacrificio lo deben asumir solamente los beneficiarios de los programas sociales. Una jugada maestra desde el punto de vista político, porque esa es precisamente la base electoral de Barack Obama…» (in Spanish) by Javier Ayuso, Economismo – Blogs El País.

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Interesting article of Paul Krugman

«La Depresión Menor: …Ahora mismo, estamos viendo no una sino dos crisis inminentes, cada una de las cuales podría provocar un desastre mundial. En Estados Unidos, los fanáticos de derechas del Congreso pueden bloquear un necesario aumento del tope de la deuda, lo que posiblemente haría estragos en los mercados financieros mundiales. Mientras tanto, si el plan que acaban de pactar los jefes de Estado europeos no logra calmar los mercados, podríamos ver un efecto dominó por todo el sur de Europa, lo cual también haría estragos en los mercados financieros mundiales. aun cuando nos las arreglemos para evitar una catástrofe inmediata, los acuerdos que se están alcanzando a ambos lados del Atlántico van a empeorar la crisis económica casi con toda seguridad.»

«De hecho, los responsables políticos parecen decididos a perpetuar lo que he dado en llamar la Depresión Menor, el prolongado periodo de paro elevado que empezó con la Gran Recesión de 2007-2009 y que continúa hasta el día de hoy, más de dos años después de que la recesión supuestamente terminase….» (in Spanish) by Paul Krugman, El País.

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Terror in Norway

Norway-FlagI really saddened by these facts. There is no excuse. I would like to know not only who has done it, but also who has incited, encouraged or proposed it.

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LAB Seminar: Martin Indarte

Next Wednesday, Dr. Martin Indarte will make a presentation in our lab with the title: Computer assisted drug discovery: What can it do for your research?

He is working at the Laboratory of Biologia Computacional i Proteòmica, Institut de Biotecnologia i Biomedicina (IBB), Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), directed by Dr. Xavier Daura.


Abstract of the presentation:
“Drug discovery and development are extremely time and resources consuming processes. Computational approaches offer an inexpensive and interesting approach that can expedite drug discovery, design, development and optimization of lead compounds. Commonly used computational approaches include ligand-based drug design (e.g. pharmacophore searches), structure-based drug design (docking), homology modeling and quantitative structure-activity and quantitative structure-property relationships (QSAR/QSPR). These approaches can also guide site directed mutagenesis, shed some light on protein behavior, peptide binding and molecular recognition phenomena. In this talk, several first hand examples of successful interactions between molecular modeling, molecular biology and pharmacology will be covered with the aim of improving positive interactions between experimentalists and molecular modelers. If you ever wondered what is all the fuzz about molecular modelers and how they could help your research, this talk is for you.”

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Additional hours for the TNF project at BSC

We have obtained 20,000 additional hours for the TNF project at BSC.

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Course on Bioinformatics for Integrative Genomics

The last 2 days I was at the Course on Bioinformatics for Integrative Genomics organized by The Biomedical Genomics Group.


Course Description
“The application of high-throughput technologies in medical genomics yields complex, multidimensional data sets that describe in detail the myriad changes that occur within individual cells and how these changes differ between patients, cells or conditions. Usually we want to use this data to answer some specific questions. For instance, which of the long list of mutations detected are likely to affect the function of the protein and which are probably neutral? Which of the genes affected by those mutations are already known to be involved in cancer or other diseases? Which pathways or biological processes are affected by the transcriptomic alterations detected in my experiment? Etc.
We need to apply bioinformatic approaches to answer these questions. This course provides theoretical and practical expertise in the field of bioinformatics for integrative genomics. Students are updated on the state of the art in the field and they become capable of handling and analyzing genomics data. Upon completion, the attendees are able to perform integrative analysis and interpret the results, in order to answer specific biological questions.
To achieve these objectives we will use three tools developed in our lab:”


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CEM-Cat Seminar: Luis F. Santamaría-Babi

Today, Dr. Luis F. Santamaría-Babi, researcher at Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) in the “Gene Expression Group”, gave as an interesting seminar on “Lymphocyte homing”.

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Computational hours for the TNF project

CESCA (at present ‘Center for Scientific and Academic Services of Catalonia’; before known as the ‘Supercomputing Centre of Catalonia Consortium’) has accepted our new project on TNF signaling. This will provide us with 200,000 computational hours along this year.

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Schrödinger Workshop

I attended the Schrödinger Workshop at CESCA (Center for Scientific and Academic Services of Catalonia).

This was the Agenda of the Workshop:

  • 09:30 – Welcome
  • 09:45 – Target structure prediction, refinement and characterization
  • 12:30 – Lunch
  • 13:30 – Virtual Screening part 1: Docking and post-docking processing
  • 15:00 – Virtual screening part 2: Cheminformatics, pharmacophore and shape-based searching
  • 17:00 – Summary
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