Briefly describe your background & experience, and how you came to work on Nanother
I completed my PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences in 1995 at the University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain, working in the development of polymeric nanoparticulate systems for ocular drug delivery, and peptide /protein delivery from new nanoparticles systems based on chitosan polymers.
During 1998 I joined BEAUFOUR-IPSEN in Barcelona as Researcher of the Innovation group where I have been working in the controlled release of peptides.
Between 1999 and 2001, I was working in the nanoencapsulation of antisens oligonucleotides and brain delivery at the University PARIS XI ( Prof Patrick Couvreur’s team).
In 2001 I joined PHARMAMAR, Madrid, as Head of Pharmaceutical Development to create and define the activities of the Department. From my PharmaMar position I stated to collaborate with the Spanish Platform of Nanomedicine as Drug Delivery Section Coordinator and to participate in an active manner in the European Plataform of Nanomedicin as PharmaMar and Zeltia group contact. PharmaMar was contacted by Nanother coordination due to our dedication to cancer treatment and our interest in nanotechnologies for drug delivery.
Tell us a bit about your organisation, the participation of your organisation in Nanother & your personal role in the project
PharmaMar is a biopharmaceutical company determined to advance cancer treatment through discovering, developing, producing, and marketing innovative drugs of marine origin. PharmaMar participate in Nanother providing an active anticancer molecule, and evaluating the in vivo activity of the encapsulated molecules into the nanocarriers.
My personal role relates with the coordination of the PharmaMar experimental activities in the project and shearing PharmaMar experience regarding Intelectual Property and Exploitation issues.
What are your expectations of the project?
To identify some nanocarriers that could provide some therapeutics advantages to the PharmaMar’s molecules involved in the project.
To improve the knowledge about the behaviour of the nanosystems after in vivo administration by non invasive technologies as imaging.
Improve the knowledge about the potential of the hyperthermia therapeutic approaches using nanoparticles.
As SP Leader, what are the most difficult or critical aspects of managing SP partners, and the most fruitful or pleasing aspects?
The most difficult point is trying to bring a multifunctional group into common objectives in the most productive way. Each of us has particular interests but the activities into the consortium should be focus to reach the common objectives. This difficulty is very frequent in larges consortium with multidisciplinary teams. However, this consortium characteristic is the most fruitful and pleasing aspect. Multidisciplinary consortia allow knowing, learning and taking experience from different scientific areas and research groups that in other way will be so difficult to obtain individually.
Are there already some concrete & interesting results for your organisation?
PharmaMar’s molecule involved on the project is being encapsulated into new nanoparticulate systems made with new polymers never tested before. The preliminary result looks very promising.
IPR issues are essential to large consortia such as NANOTHER, integrating universities, SMEs, research centres & large industrial partners. In what ways do you think that the exploitation seminar helped to clarify the IPR situation for all partners?
I think that the Exploitation Seminar gave to the most of the partners, a broad idea about the complexity of this matter and illustrates the major points that should be considered in order to do a preliminary evaluation about the exploitation strategies of novelties. I think that it was a good start point to face the IPR issues during the project.
What are currently / will be the most promising results in your SP?
As Exploitation manager I hope that the activities in this task will be focus to avoid losing any possibility of exploitation of a particular result or technology due to our incapacity to identify that this technology could be exploitable.
Would you participate in another European project?
PharmaMar, as a biopharma company, needs to be involved into high level projects in order to be updated about new technologies that could provide a therapeutic benefit of our molecules. PharmaMar is always looking for international project participation and participates in almost three-five European projects every year.
As SP leader, you have been involved in the project since its conception & set-up in 2007 - what is your view on the project & it’s progress today?
After the initial difficulties of coordination due to the broad number of technologies and systems to be tested as consequence of the experience of the partners, at the present, the activities are more defined and the objectives are reaching in a more satisfactory way. In my opinion I think we need to improve our coordination between groups and activities in order to reach the final objectives.