02 July 2021 The BIST Ignite program for multidisciplinary research

ICFO will participate in two of the five projects funded in the fifth edition of this program The BIST Ignite Program launched in 2016, annually funds five projects from within the BIST Community, chosen for their multidisciplinarity and high level of scientific excellence. The program promotes multidisciplinary collaborations at the frontiers of knowledge to solve scientific and societal challenges that have yet to be solved by cutting-edge research.

On June 28th, the winning projects to be funded in the fifth edition of the program were announced, including two projects that will be co-led by ICFO researchers. Ten research teams in total from various BIST centres (CRG, IBEC, ICFO, ICIQ, ICN2, and IRB Barcelona) will combine their capabilities in genetics, chemistry, molecular biology, bioengineering, photonics, biosensors, and new materials to provide new scientific answers to major open challenges in health and fundamental physics.

The winners are:

PolySTOP- led by Benedetta Bolognesi, Professor at IBEC and Xavier Salvatella, ICREA Professor at IRB.

EXPLODE-TNBC- led by Sara Sdelci. Professor at CRG and Antoni Riera, UB Professor at IRB.

SENESGOLD- led by Marc Montesinos and José Alberto López, postdoctoral researchers at ICIQ.

ASITOC - led by Juan Manuel Fernández-Costa, postdoctoral researcher at IRB and Michael Tayler, postdoctoral researcher at ICFO

TeraFox - led by Ekaterina Khestanova, a postdoctoral researcher at ICFO, and David Pesquera, a postdoctoral researcher at ICN2.


Each of the five projects will receive a grant of 20,000 euros to carry out the first ten-month phase, after which, depending on the results obtained, a panel of experts will select two of the projects to receive additional funding of 50,000 euros. The aim of the program is to help projects with a highly innovative approach and strong potential, which may subsequently apply for competitive funding calls, to get off the ground. Since the launch of the first call in December 2016, there have been five editions of the BIST Ignite Programme, with a total of 23 projects receiving funding, for a total amount of €810,000, and with the participation of more than 170 researchers from the seven BIST centres.

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