The Institute of Biomembranes, Bioenergetics and Molecular Biotechnologies (IBIOM) of the National Research Council (CNR) in collaboration with the Consorzio per Valutazioni Biologiche e Farmacologiche (CVBF) organised the webinar entitled “Paediatric Diseases: research, biodrugs and territory”, held online on the 29th of September 2020.

The webinar has been organised in the framework of the Biotech Week, a week dedicated to events and meetings organised all over the world, that this year was held between the 28th of September and the 4th of October, to talk about biotechnology to sensitise an heterogeneous audience and to underline the key role of the biotechnology in the improvement of the quality of life in several fields. More information on Biotech Week is available on the official website.

The webinar deepened the theme of the paediatric diseases, focusing on neurodevelopmental diseases and rare diseases that have very often a paediatric onset, and the opportunity of innovation in paediatric research provided by the European Paediatric Translational Research Infrastructure (EPTRI).

Specifically, the dissertation of Dr. Vacca presented the theme of the alteration of the brain development linked to intellectual disability explaining the possible causes, including alteration at mitochondrial level, and the associated diseases (e.g. primary mitochondrial disease and secondary mitochondrial dysfunctions), and the possible cures as the use of biodrugs extracted from plants that indirectly target mitochondria, as polyphenols (e.g. resveratrol), with the aim of creating mixtures of polyphenols suitable for paediatric administration.

Moreover, the webinar has been the occasion to be updated from Dr. Annichiarico on the important actions performed by the Regional Health Agency of Puglia (AReS), which works through the Coordination of the Rare Diseases to provide excellent cures for rare diseases’ patients. Many steps have been performed starting from the computerisation of the system that allows the identification of the rare diseases in the territory with the creation of the Registry of the Rare Disease in Puglia to design tailored answers in terms of online Personalised Therapeutic Plans. It contributes to reduce also the expenses of patients avoiding the need to move to another region. In this pandemic condition, a programme of teleassistance to monitor the drug administration door to door has been launched for 23 children.

Last but not least, the EPTRI Coordinator, Donato Bonifazi, presented the status of the paediatric research in Europe and the project of a new Infrastructure EPTRI aimed at promoting cooperation and integration of the research competences in the paediatric field creating a virtual space in which accelerates the paediatric research providing services and structural support to research centres and other users involved in the paediatric drug development, particularly in basic, preclinical and translational research in the field of the paediatric medicines discovery, paediatric biomarkers and biosamples, developmental pharmacology and paediatric medicines formulations.

The webinar represented a common ground for the scientific community dealing with biotechnology applied to medicine with the need to exchange and share competences and expertise. The audience was represented by researchers and students of the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery.
Below you can find the recording of the event in Italian.