Appointment of Ignacio Revuelta, Group leader
The discussion about who establishes and seeks answers to the questions of human reality gives us a holistic view of disease and, with it, a hope for the cure of chronic and/or incurable disorders

Current research

Problem

A kidney transplant is the best and often, the only treatment available to terminal chronic kidney patients. Advances in medicine have made it possible to lengthen the useful life of many organs, but this is often accompanied by risks for patients. Despite being a minor problem, the rejection of an organ is the cause of most transplant deaths in the long term.

Chronic treatment with immunosuppressant drugs alters the immune system, exposing the patient to infections and tumours. To prevent this, it is necessary to have early diagnostic and therapeutic tools that are effective and with low toxicity levels.

Approach

There is a need to establish a distinction between and describe transplant patients from the clinical and from the molecular standpoint, due to the enormous heterogeneity of this group. Immunological, histological (of the tissues) and biochemical monitoring is not sufficient, and we need to find new markers and new technologies.

Studying the possibilities of nanomedicine as a diagnostic and therapeutic tool could provide a response in many areas. Moreover, the addition of add big data and artificial intelligence represents a great step forward in the future of organ transplants.

Impact

The establishment of a clinical and molecular definition of patients in relation to their risks in terms of immunology, infection and neoplasms makes it possible to apply personalised medicine to organ transplants.

The group has experience with patients who have rejected a kidney transport and have then developed colon and skin cancer or Kaposi’s sarcoma. However, apart from medication, these patients require diagnostic algorithms based on big data and artificial intelligence to attack the tumours while they remain immunodepressed. The possibility of adding nanomedicine as a biomarker and therapeutic arsenal, as demonstrated in post-transplant cancer, could lead to the use of new therapeutic strategies in these patients.