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World Cup of Research: Portugal vs Spain

The hosts of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, Russia, kicked the games off last night with a thrilling display against Saudi Arabia. The hosts were dominant throughout match, earning a crucial 3 points with a 5-0 thrashing of their opponents.

Tonight we will be treated to a battle of European giants as the current European titleholders, Portugal, take on the fluid football of Spain who will be looking to make a return to the form that saw them lift trophies in 2008, 2010 and 2012.

But this World Cup is more than just about football. We proudly wave the flag for cancer researchers all over the world so we thought we’d field our own teams to match up against the big games of the tournament. Let’s kick-off…

PORTUGAL

PROFESSOR CEU FIGUEIREDO

Professor Figueiredo at the University of Porto, Portugal, has a keen interest in bacteria. Particularly, the bacteria that live in your stomach. Changes in the diversity and type of bacteria in your stomach could play an important role in the development of stomach cancer so Professor Figueiredo and her team are studying the type of bacteria found in the stomachs of different people who are at different stages- from healthy to those with stomach cancer. They hope that their work will help lead to novel strategies to stop stomach cancer.

SPAIN

DR ANGEL NEBREDA

Dr Nebreda at Institute for Research in Biomedicine, Barcelona, Spain, wants to shut off cancer’s energy supply. The way cancer cells get the energy they need to grow and divide is different to that of normal healthy cells so understanding exactly how cancer cells do it could reveal new ways to develop targeted treatments. Dr Nebreda and his team and interested in a particular protein found within our cells that cancers need to survive. They want to see if by blocking it off they can cut off the cancers energy supply and stop the cells from growing.

Science Communications Manager

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