Funding



The MCAC group (early 2010 - 2022) has received funding (including on-going contracts) from the Industry (US, EU and Greek Pharmaceutical or Cosmeceutical companies), as well as from Hellenic foundations, HFRI, the Hellenic State Scholarships Foundation, Hellenic GSRT and European Union (COST actions, FP7, H2020). Furthermore, a significant expertise with several “success stories” has already accumulated in screening natural compounds and/or drugs for their physiological and/or anti-ageing, anti-cancer effects.

Indicative research grants that the MCAC group has participated include:


BioImaging-GR
 (https://www.imbb.forth.gr/news/Bioimaging-GR_RoadMap.pdf)



BioImaging-GR is Greek a state-of-the-art Biological Imaging infrastructure, within the framework of Euro-BioImaging, the associated pan-European ESFRI Research Infrastructure (www.eurobioimaging.eu). BioImaging approaches are becoming widely used and are greatly appreciated as cutting edge tools for dissecting complex biological phenomena, for understanding cell structure and dynamics, and for extracting biological information of clinical relevance. Recent advances in imaging technologies and the development of several innovative microscopy modes have opened new vistas in the field of Biological Imaging that is rapidly gaining critical importance in the area of Life Sciences. BioImaging-GR aims to create a strongly interlinked and geographically distributed infrastructure for general-access, high-end biological imaging providing a range of imaging methods to scientists, interested stakeholders, SMEs and enterprises in Greece and neighboring countries. Moreover, BioImaging-GR will seek to acquire and provide access to "beyond state-of-the-art" imaging technologies, which are not easily accessible to the broader imaging community. In addition to the acquisition and upgrade of facilities, BioImaging-GR will introduce new expertise, relevant to biomedical imaging through recruitment and training of resident personnel. Through BioImaging-GR, the national investment in imaging infrastructure will be used in the most cost-effective and efficient way by applying the highest quality standards in management, access and service of imaging facilities. Modernizing BioImaging infrastructure and acquiring or generating the necessary expertise will allow Greece to maintain a competitive position in the field of Biomedical research, and provide cutting-edge facilities to the broader research community in south-east Europe.

MediHealth (http://www.medihealth.eu/)


The main goal of the MediHealth project is to introduce a novel approach for the discovery of active agents of food plants from the Mediterranean diet and other global sources to promote healthy ageing.The project is based on a well-balanced exchange of researchers between 5 universities and 4 companies from European countries as well as 4 universities from non-European countries.It is developed on the needs and interests of both sectors exploiting the existing complementary expertise. Selected plants from the Mediterranean diet and food plants from Africa, Asia, and South America are subjected to in silico, in vitro (advanced cell-based assays), in vivo (flies and mice models), & metabolism analysis.Advanced analytical techniques complement the pharmacological evaluation process for the efficient isolation and identification of bioactive plant constituents. Furthermore, pharmacological profiling of bioactive natural products as well as identification and synthesis of their metabolites are carried out.

TASCMAR (http://www.tascmar.eu/)

TASCMAR is a collaborative research project funded under the EU Horizon 2020 programme and aspires to develop new tools and strategies to overcome existing bottlenecks in the discovery and application of marine-derived biomolecules, with a focus on the theme of anti-ageing. From exploring the possibility for new medical drugs without harmful side effects, nutraceuticals (e.g. dietary supplements) and cosmetic products to developing technologies for bioremediation, TASCMAR investigates the potential of the underutilized mesophotic zone of the ocean (between 30 and 100 meters depth) and develops innovative approaches for the cultivation and extraction of marine invertebrates and symbionts from lab to pilot-scale. TASCMAR is part of the EU Blue Growth Strategy, aiming to unlock the potential of seas, oceans and coasts for sustainable growth. The project will be closely monitored for its socio-economic and environmental impacts so as to ensure sustainability while promoting economic growth.

PlantUP (http://plant-up.com/en/home-2/)\

PlantUP Research Infrastructure is an infrastructure of excellence that focuses on systematically recording, preserving, protecting and exploiting the wealth of Greek plant biodiversity. The individual actions of implementing the PlantUP Infrastructure promote basic and applied research with the ultimate recipient of the human being. PlantUP includes the rational and uniform reinforcement of the existing recipient infrastructure at national level, aiming at the sustainable exploitation of plant biodiversity through the creation of high added value products. Highly qualified experts in botanical, agronomic, chemical, and natural product technology, genetics, analytical chemistry and plant protection are joining forces to build this infrastructure.

MICROSMETICS

MICROSMETICS aims to discover and carry to the stage of development innovative products in the area of cosmeceuticals originating from global biodiversity using emerging and state of the art technologies in the field of biotechnology, natural products chemistry and applied microbiology. These objectives will be implemented through an extended and balanced scheme of researcher’s exchanges and recruitments, in both directions and via a mutual scientific project developed on the needs and interests of both Industrial and Academic sectors, exploiting the existing complimentary expertise. More specifically, MICROSMETICS scientific concept involves the discovery of novel natural products originating from global microbial biodiversity. Already existing culture collections will be exploited incorporating modern high throughput platforms (in silico & in vitro) for the rational and targeted selection of the most promising strains. Advanced analytical approaches and techniques will be applied for the efficient, accelerated and advantageous isolation and identification of natural constituents as well as the quality assessment of the lead products. A broad spectrum of bioassays and novel analytical approaches will be incorporated for the evaluation of anti-ageing, more specifically anti-oxidant, skin-protecting, and skin-whitening activity of all derived products. Attention will be given to the selection and optimisation of fermentation technologies used for the production of final lead products to ensure sustainability. Within this frame, core scientific knowledge and lead compounds for further development are expected to be produced creating valuable synergies. Expertise will be transferred by means of the seconded researchers training in environments with different dynamics and orientation. MICROSMETICS aspires to comprise a successful model of long-lasting collaboration between Industry and Academia for sustainable exploitation of existing know-how and produced knowledge.