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A PhD student launches a project for young microbiology researchers.

Sergio Bárcena, from the University of Navarra, has launched this initiative together with two graduates from two other centers in Madrid and Seville.

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Sergio Bárcena
PHOTO: Manuel Castells

"Jóvenes Investigadores de la Sociedad Española de Microbiología (JISEM)" is the project launched by Sergio Bárcena, PhD student of the University of Navarra. It is an initiative that arises within the national association with the goal to facilitate access to the research in this field. The initiative was born thanks to partnership with Ignacio Belda, from the Complutense University of Madrid and Blanca Vera, from the University of Seville.

"It all came about during a introductory course to the research in Microbiology in which I participated in 2012. There I found students like me, with uncertainty and little information about the future moved by a common interest: Microbiology", explains Bárcena. "It was then when together with two colleagues we proposed to the SEM this project."

"Although we are still growing, we have already carried out several projects and created a web page where we disseminate scholarships and offers related to Microbiology". In addition, they have made a list of national masters where each program can be evaluated thanks to surveys conducted by students and they have a Facebook page with the latest news. 

An initiative in development

"In recent months we have received financial aid from both young and old members of the Spanish Society of Microbiology. In fact, we consider ourselves a group for researchers of Degree, teachers in their first years of teaching, students of Master's Degree, doctoral students,... without forgetting Microbiology in other areas such as food or biotechnology companies", he points out.

Anyone can be a member of "Jóvenes Investigadores" and benefit from the dissemination of calls, but only members of the Spanish Society of Microbiology have, among other advantages, the possibility of accessing offers from work and a whole network of professional contacts.

Sergio Bárcena graduated in Biology and Biochemistry in 2012. He is currently a student of doctorate of department of Microbiology and Parasitology of School of Medicine at the University of Navarra. Her thesis studies the efficacy of a compound to treat sepsis, a critical disease usually caused by bacteria that infect the whole organism and for which there is no specific treatment. The project is supported by partnership of a German group of research and the business Brandenburg Antiinfektiva GmbH