Press room

Guadalupe Sabio Buzo and Pablo Pérez Martinez are equal winners of the 1st Fundación Jesús Serra Research Award for their research in the fields of nutrition, diet, and health

"Dr. Guadalupe Sabio Buzo, from Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares Carlos III (Spanish National Center for Cardiovascular Research Carlos III, CNIC) of Madrid, and Dr. Pablo Pérez Martínez, from Instituto Maimónides de Investigación Biomédica de Córdoba (Maimonides Institute for Biomedical Research of Cordoba, IMIBIC), are equal winners of the 1st Fundación Jesús Serra Research Award aimed at scientists up to 45 years of age who specialize in nutrition, diet, and health."

The jury, chaired by Doctor María Blasco, Director of Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (Spanish National Cancer Research Center, CNIO), which also comprises Dr. Mercedes Rincón, Professor in the Department of Medicine in the Division of Immunobiology at the University of Vermont; Prof. Lina Badimon, Director of Instituto Catalán de Ciencias Cardiovasculares (Catalan Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences, ICCC) and Research Professor at Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (Spanish National Research Council, CSIC); Dr. Carlos Macaya, Director of the Cardiology Service at Hospital Clínico San Carlos (San Carlos Clinical Hospital) in Madrid and President of Fundación Española del Corazón (Spanish Heart Foundation, FEC); and Dr. Pedro Mata, President and Founder of Fundación Española de Hipercolesterolemia Familiar (Spanish Familial Hypercholesterolemia Foundation, FHF), assessed the research trajectories and the important contributions of the two candidates to both clinical and basic research.

The jury revealed its decision at midday today during a ceremony attended by, in addition to those receiving the award, Dr. María Blasco, Dr. Pedro Mata, and President and Director of Fundación Jesús Serra, Federico Halpern and Laura Halpern, respectively.

For the past six years, Dr. Guadalupe Sabio Buzo has led the research team at CNIC that studies the incidence of obesity among diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer patients. For the General Director of CNIC, Valentín Fuster, “Dr. Sabio is an excellent scientist, a committed leader, and one of the Spanish scientists with the greatest prospects for the future. I am convinced that she will be one of the benchmarks of her generation.”

Guadalupe Sabio expressed, “I thank Fundación Jesús Serra for the important task they carry out raising awareness about the work done by Spanish scientists. At a time when a culture of immediacy and speed is on the rise, it is important to acknowledge the advancements that science has achieved, bit by bit, that allow us to live and grow old better each day.”

Her most recent research work is related to the growing obesity epidemic and the increase in obesity-related illnesses that make it necessary to identify new therapeutic targets. The project attempts to study the changes that occur in our bodies when we gain weight and how those changes can lead to cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, or liver cancer.

For his part, Dr. Pablo Pérez Martínez, a researcher at Instituto Maimónides de Investigación Biomédica de Córdoba (Maimonides Institute for Biomedical Research of Cordoba, IMIBIC) and specialist at Hospital Universitario Reina Sofía (Reina Sofía University Hospital) in Cordoba, was awarded for his research trajectory in the field of nutrition.

His research work currently focuses on studying the beneficial effects of lifestyle on aging and the prevention and treatment of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. He is carrying out a research project on the Mediterranean diet related to probiotics and their importance in improving cognitive ability in patients with mild cognitive impairment. The project is multidisciplinary in nature and therefore involves the collaboration of experts in high-precision technologies, including neuropsychologists, specialists in both functional neuroimaging via positron-emission tomography and in genomics. The results, which will be obtained in two years, may lead to completely harmless ways to help people with cognitive impairments.

Pérez Martinez has pointed out that this award represents “recognition of my work as a clinical researcher in a field of growing interest, which human nutrition is. In that sense, it is important for doctors to understand that a healthy diet, as a fundamental pillar of a healthy lifestyle, is the most powerful weapon that we have for preventing chronic diseases. Therefore, we must raise awareness in our society about the importance of investing in our health, for which diet is a fundamental tool. The mere existence of entities like Fundación Jesús Serra, which give visibility to these types of projects, along with adequate institutional investment, is essential in order to continue generating knowledge that can be beneficial to our patients.”

The award ceremony, which will also boast the attendance of Secretary of State for Research, Development, and Innovation Carmen Vela, will take place next Wednesday, May 23, in the auditorium Rafael del Pino in Madrid.

The Fundación Jesús Serra Research Award, with its €50,000 endowment (in this case, €25,000 for each award recipient as dual winners), aims to incentivize research in a field that has been proven to be fundamental: the relationship between nutrition and health. This link consolidated for years until it was finally confirmed that lifestyles and eating habits are able to prevent and improve the clinical condition of some illnesses, such as ischemic cardiopathy, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, cancer, and obesity, among others.

According to Federico Halpern, President of Fundación Jesús Serra, “We strongly believe in the need to support young scientists and to promote all research related to nutrition and health because the well-being of future generations depends on it.”

About Fundación Jesús Serra

Fundación Jesús Serra, part of Grupo Catalana Occidente, is a non-profit private entity created in memory of Jesús Serra Santamans, a well-known business owner and patron who founded Grupo Catalana Occidente. Its purpose is to support, promote, and develop cultural, business, teaching, musical, sporting, solidarity, and research initiatives.

Within the framework to promote research, it is worth highlighting the Fundación Jesús Serra ’Visiting Researcher Program’, which has been carried out for the last eight years in collaboration with CNIC (Spanish National Center for Cardiovascular Research Carlos III of Madrid), CNIO (Spanish National Cancer Research Center), and IAC (Canary Islands Institute of Astrophysics). Its purpose is to attract  highly prestigious researchers to these institutions with the aim of beginning and delving further into the courses of action that stem from the generation of common scientific interests.

You can follow the developments of the Fundación Jesús Serra Research Award on social media by using the hashtag #PremioInvestigacionFJS

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Jone Paredes

Jone Paredes