UMIB is a multidisciplinary unit dedicated to research applied to clinical medicine. This unit ultimate main aim is to achieve innovation and scientific progress to improve human health, focusing on the study of high impact diseases and disorders based on the prevalence, morbidity or mortality.
UMIB research focus are mostly triggered by the need to find real answers to questions arising from every day clinical practice and uses a translational approach to unravel the unknown, with the ultimate goal of improving health-care outcomes.
UMIB research is grounded on the close collaboration of multidisciplinary research teams spanning from basic molecular researchers to clinical scientists that allow an efficient implementation of translational research protocols taking advantage of the easy accessibly to patient data and cutting edge laboratory resources.
UMIB is based at the Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar, University of Porto (ICBAS / UP) and the Centro Hospitalar do Porto (CHP), a Medical School and its University Hospital. Together, the two institutions are the core of Centro Académico-Clínico ICBAS-CHP that hosts UMIB researchers. Grounded within a close geographic location on two intercommunicating campus, researchers are either based on laboratories or clinical departments depending on the expertise and activities conducted, both under the support of the larger organization that ensures a successful integration of research efforts. This integration is only made possible by the close collaboration between Mariana P. Monteiro, UMIB general coordination and Luísa Lobato, the director of DEFI (Departamento de Ensino, Formação e Investigação/Department of education, formation and research) at CHP, which joint their efforts in the management of research strategies and serve as a communication between the institutions.
UMIB key-resources include:
- Being based in one of the largest tertiary healthcare centers in the Northern Portugal that allows the accessibility to a large and well-characterized patient population;
- Having accessibility to core laboratory research equipment and facilities appropriate to achieve the research goals, such as animal facilities, cell culture, confocal microscopy, flow-cytometers and real-time thermocyclers; and last but not the least;
- Having accumulated a broad spectrum of skills and expertise among the research team spanning from basic to clinical medicine that guarantee the use of different approaches to achieve a common objective, thus creating the basis for the establishment of Translational Research programs.
UMIB is dedicated to translation and clinical research on epidemiology, disease mechanisms, identification of biomarkers and targeted therapies for human diseases, with focus on four main pillars:
- Hereditary and Genetic Diseases
- Metabolic, Cardiovascular and Endocrine Disorders;
- Immunity, Infection & Inflammation;
- Oncology and Oncobiology.
UMIB managing structure consist of a General Coordinator based at ICBAS that work in close partnership with the Head of DEFI based at CUHP, while researchers are organized into different teams, each lead by a Senior Principal Researcher. These research teams are dedicated to more specific topics of medicine: human genomics, autoimmunity and neurosciences, haematology, oncology, nephrology, endocrinology and reproduction. Despite each research team is dedicated to the study of diseases of epidemiological relevance in their specific area of interest, there is a considerable overlap and some research projects result from a more transversal approach that feeds from various disciplines and benefits from the collaboration of the different research teams within the unit. As a whole, UMIB covers a broad spectrum of medical conditions speeding through this approach the process clinical refinement.