In line with our affiliation to Institut de Recerca Sant Joan de Déu (IRSJD), we participated in a study published recently in Science Translational Medicine (DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.abb0322), the prestigious journal from the Science group. This research, led by Dr. Carles Lerin at IRSJD, identified an inverse relationship between maternal breast milk betaine content and infant growth, and it was demonstrated that  maternal betaine supplementation during lactation induced a transient increase in offspring intestinal Akkermansia abundance, and reduced early weight gain. Furthermore, it was shown that maternal betaine supplementation decreased adiposity and improved glucose metabolism throughout adulthood, demonstrating a link between breast milk betaine content and long-term metabolic health. Our participation in this study is a follow up of  our long standing research on the molecular basis of the healthy properties of breastfeeding.
A recent article  (https://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=10.1371/journal.pbio.3000918) published in PLOS Biology, presents a list of the 2% of scientists worldwide that lead different disciplines. This ranking has been conducted with the information provided by the Scopus database. Francesc Villarroya appears as one of these top 2% influential researchers in field of Endocrinology and Metabolism.
Albert Mestres Arenas, PhD student at our team, has been awarded by "Comissió de dinamització Lingüística de la Facultat de Biologia UB" with the prize to the best graduation thesis document written in Catalan (academic year 2019-20) for his work “Caracterització fenotípica del teixit adipós perivascular aòrtic i estudi comparatiu amb altres dipòsits adiposos”, developed at our laboratory. Congratulations!
The "Institut de Recerca Sant Joan de Déu" (IRSJD) has been recognized by the Board of Trustees of the Institution of the Research Centers of Catalonia (CERCA) as a CERCA center. This  implies the recognition of the frontier biomedical research developed at IRSJD and oriented to the improvement of quality of life in children and adults. The CERCA recognition implies entering the Catalan research structure, as a top quality research center showing efficient management, and will allow access to additional funds to develop scientific activities.

Our research team has been part of IRSJD for a few years, which has enhanced our translational research in metabolism and endocrinology in collaboration with clinics at Sant Joan de Déu hospital. Examples of our translational research in pediatrics follow:


Reduced circulating levels of chemokine CXCL14 in adolescent girls with polycystic ovary syndrome: normalization after insulin sensitization.
García-Beltran C, Cereijo R, Quesada-López T, Malpique R, López-Bermejo A, de Zegher F, Ibáñez L, Villarroya F.
BMJ Open Diabetes Res Care. 2020 Feb;8(1):e001035.

Circulating growth-and-differentiation factor-15 in early life: relation to prenatal and postnatal growth and adiposity measurements.
Díaz M, Campderrós L, Guimaraes MP, López-Bermejo A, de Zegher F, Villarroya F, Ibáñez L.
Pediatr Res. 2020 Apr;87(5):897-902.

Growth Differentiation Factor 15 is a potential biomarker of therapeutic response for TK2 deficient myopathy.
Dominguez-Gonzalez C, Badosa C, Madruga-Garrido M, Martí I, Paradas C, Ortez C, Diaz-Manera J, Berardo A, Alonso-Pérez J, Trifunov S, Cuadras D, Kalko SG, Blázquez-Bermejo C, Cámara Y, Martí R, Mavillard F, Martin MA, Montoya J, Ruiz-Pesini E, Villarroya J, Montero R, Villarroya F, Artuch R, Hirano M, Nascimento A, Jimenez-Mallebrera C.
Sci Rep. 2020 Jun 22;10(1):10111.


Brown adipose tissue in prepubertal children: associations with sex, birthweight, and metabolic profile.
Malpique R, Gallego-Escuredo JM, Sebastiani G, Villarroya J, López-Bermejo A, de Zegher F, Villarroya F, Ibáñez L.
Int J Obes (Lond). 2019 Feb;43(2):384-391.



The  Integrase Strand Transfer Inhibitor (INSTI) antiretrovirals are  among the last generation drugs to treat HIV-infected patients. Recent data indicate that these patients show abnormally increased adiposity after treatment. Thus, the HIV infection and global obesity epidemics meet to confer to HIV patients increased metabolic and cardiovascular comorbidities.The coordinated research projects  will assess the molecular and cellular basis of such phenomenon and will identify potential targets of preventive intervention.



That system, in which bradykinin is a main actor, has been traditionally associated with the physiology of the renal and cardiovascular systems and processes of inflammation and pain. Our study, led by Dr.M.Peyrou, Juan de la Cierva researcher at our lab, reports that the kallikrein-kinin system acts as mechanism of molecular self-control of brown and beige adipose tissue thermogenic activation, and could help prevent the harmful effects of excessive activation of brown adipose tissue occurring in some pathological conditions such as cachexia or recovery from severe burns.The full article is accessible at:   https://rdcu.be/b3Ud4



Expertscape is an international web-based data analysis algorithm  that  objectively ranks people and and institutions by their expertise in more than 27,000 biomedical topics, based on  scientific publications. For details see:    http://www.expertscape.com/ex/adipose+tissue



Ruben Cereijo is a post-doctoral researcher, assistant professor at UB, member of our research team. The “Societat Catalana de Biologia” Young Researcher Award is for his doctoral thesis “Nous actors moleculars en la fisiologia del teixit adipós i pathologies associades”, read in the University of Barcelona in 2015, and the award to the best article is for the paper “CXCL14, a brown adipokine that mediates brown-fat-to-macrophage communication in thermogenic adaptation”, published in the prestigious scientific journal Cell Metabolism in 2018  (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30122557). According to this study, the CXCL14 protein –formerly related to tumor progression and organogenesis- is synthetized by the brown adipose tissue and can activate cells with anti-inflammatory activity –M2 macrophages-, which have beneficial effects on metabolism and protect against type II diabetes and obesity. The prizes were given to the winners in the ceremony of the 4th Night of Biology, held in the Ramon Margalef Auditorium of CosmoCaixa Barcelona on July 10. Further information can be found at: https://www.ub.edu/dyn/cms/continguts_ca/menu_eines/noticies/index.html