BSC researcher Marta Melé, awarded the L’Oréal-Unesco For Women in Science 2019 award

27 November 2019

Melé has been one of the five winners for her research on specific biomarkers and therapeutic targets for breast cancer prevention.

The L’Oréal-Unesco For Women in Science program has awarded its five annual awards this morning to projects developed by women under 40 who are investigating some of the great scientific challenges of Humanity.

The group manager of the Transcriptomics and Functional Genomics Lab of the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC), Marta Melé, has been one of the winners for her work in the analysis of gene variations among individuals and their implications in diseases like breast cancer. She aims to find specific biomarkers and therapeutic targets for the prevention of this type of cancer.

The winning projects are chosen for their innovative nature, their impact and scientific contribution, from fields such as biomedicine, biotechnology, computational biology, plant genomics or marine science, among others.

The world needs science and science needs women who, like them, contribute to advancing the resolution of the innumerable challenges in the world. One more year, the winners demonstrate the indisputable quality of science in our country, and specifically, of the science developed by women,” said Juan Alonso de Lomas, president of L’Oréal Spain, during the event.

The jury in charge of choosing the winning projects is composed of María Blasco, director of the CNIO and, in addition, president of the jury of the program. Next to her are María Vallet-Regí, Professor of Inorganic Chemistry at the Faculty of Pharmacy of the Complutense University of Madrid; Rafael Garesse, Rector of the Autonomous University of Madrid, and Francis Mójica, microbiologist and full professor of Physiology, Genetics and Microbiology at the University of Alicante.

The associate director of BSC, Josep Maria Martorell, has attended the awards ceremony on behalf of the centre.

24 members of the Men for Women in Science Men's League

During the XIV edition of the awards, the advances of the Men for Women in Science League of Scientists were presented. It was created last year and is composed of 24 men in key positions of responsibility in the scientific and academic field of Spain with the objective of achieving an egalitarian scientific environment. Among the data highlighted after analyzing their own centers, the number of women hired before and after doctoral studies has increased, and the number of women who lead research groups has also increased slightly. In addition, the vast majority of these centers and universities led by members of the League have an equality plan, and follow up on it, have a stable commission in this area and prepare reports on gender equality.

Among the new additions to the League are scientists such as Valentín Fuster, who joins members such as the same director of the BSC, Mateo Valero, Luis Serrano, director of the Center for Genomic Regulation; Rafael Garesse, rector of the Autonomous University of Madrid; Pedro Miguel Echenique, Carlos López-Otín, or Bernat Soria.