President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner conducted a video conference from the Presidential Palace to inaugurate the new building of the Centro de Investigaciones y Desarrollo en Inmunología y Enfermedades Infecciosas (CIDIE) [Centre for Inmunology and Infectious Diseases]. The event was held in the city of Córdoba and was attended by the minister of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation, Dr. Lino Barañao; the president of the National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET), Dr. Roberto Salvarezza; the director of the CIDIE, Dr. Hugo Luján; and the vice-chancellor of the Catholic University of Córdoba, Dr. Alfonzo Gómez.
Dr. Barañao said: “We are inaugurating an institute that required an investment of more than ARS $6 millions funded by the CONICET and the UCC. The director of the Centre is Dr. Hugo Luján, one of the most recognized researchers of the country. His studies have been published by important scientific journals and his patents are really valuable, they contribute to have thermostable vaccines and orally administered drugs.”
Besides, he added “this is a worldwide pioneer development. We support this great group of experts that has the double vision we have had during all this administration: to produce basic but useful science with economic impact that promotes new jobs.”
For her part, the President said “We, Argentine people, want to know our scientists, who are artists that do science to help people live better and develop cures for diseases.” She also added “this government appreciates your contribution to all Argentine people. It is important to have useful knowledge to enhance the quality of life.”
Furthermore, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner stated that seeing the director of the CIDIE accompanied by young scientists “meant the continuity of his intelligence and knowledge. Transferring science to new generations strengthens the technological sovereignty that we want for the Argentine Republic.”
For the president of the CONICET, “this is another inauguration of many that we have been doing in all the country during these last twelve years, with unprecedented boost to science and technology which has been developed by the national government.” Besides, “Córdoba is one of the strongest areas of the CONICET, we have more than 1000 researchers, 1300 fellows, 200 technicians, 21 centres and institutes. This Centre, particularly, has obtained international patents for vaccines and the development of platforms for oral administration of vaccines and drugs such as insuline, which nowadays require other type of administration.”
The CIDIE is located inside the Campus and is a double dependency institute between the CONICET and the UCC. The construction was the result of a joint action between both institutions. The Centre is 760 square metres for offices and laboratories with cutting edge technology. The total amount of the investment is ARS $6.215.000. That amount includes ARS $3.800.000 provided by the CONICET and ARS $2.415.000 provided by the Catholic University of Córdoba apart from the land and part of the building.
The researcher and his team developed an oral vaccine against parasite Giardia lamblia, which was already licensed for commercialization in a foreign company and its use in domestic animals. Besides, scientists at this centre worked to develop a platform for the production of oral vaccines and a system for the oral administration of protein drugs.
Currently, the CIDIE is devoted to the research and development of monoclonal antibodies, recombinant proteins, viral particles and other biotechnological products to be used in diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of human, animal or plant diseases and their different applications. The Centre provides services and technology that are transferred to the social and public productive sectors of the country and the world.
The event was atended by directors of the CONICET, Dr. Vicente Macagno and Dr. Francisco Tamarit- who is also the vice-chancellor of the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba (UNC)-; and the director of the Scientific and Technological Centre (CCT) Córdoba, Dr. José Luis Bocco.
To watch the video click here.