Sílvia Beà, PhD
Dr. Beà is a postdoctoral researcher in the Molecular Pathology Laboratory at IDIBAPS, Hospital Clinic in Barcelona, Spain. She obtained a degree in Biological Sciences at the Autonomous University of Barcelona in 1996 before joining the Laboratory of Pathology at the Hospital Clinic, University of Barcelona as a researcher in Dr. Elias Campo's laboratory. In 2003 she received her PhD in Biological Sciences with honors for the best doctoral thesis. "I was looking for a hospital and research center to study some type of human cancer, no matter which one," she said. And then, in what she referred to as "maybe destiny," she decided to join Dr. Campo's team in Barcelona and focus her research on lymphoma. After receiving her PhD she held a postdoctoral fellowship in the Laboratory of Pathology.
As a member of the Lymphoma Research Foundation's (LRF) Mantle Cell Lymphoma Consortium (MCLC), Dr. Beà especially enjoys the opportunity to participate in interdisciplinary meetings and discussions. "I like talking to other researchers who are more experienced in the pathologic and clinical point of view, especially to complement my own genetic knowledge," she said. She is also a member of the International Consortium Lymphoma/Leukemia Molecular Profiling Project (LLMPP), European Mantle Cell Lymphoma Network (EMCLN), International Consortium Cancer Genome-Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (ICGC-CLL), and the Spanish Cancer Research Network. She has published 54 papers in international journals of high impact in the field. Dr. Beà has been actively participating in three consecutive LRF funded projects since 2005, all of which are devoted to the study of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL).
Since 2007, she has run her own research group at IDIBAPS. Her studies focus on the characterization of chromosomal alterations of malignant lymphomas (especially MCL), as well as the molecular and genetic mechanisms involved in the development and progression of neoplasms, and the impact of alterations on the survival of the patients. "My work contributed to the initial definition of the genetic complexity of MCL that we have now refined with higher resolution approaches," she said. "I started many years ago with low resolution techniques and now we are using the most recent next-generation sequencing techniques and are still finding new, more complex, and smaller alterations. This in turn has led to the identification of novel genes involved in the pathogenesis of this lymphoma. One of the main goals is translating the knowledge generated in these studies to the clinical practice."
Dr. Beà finds the possibility to explore MCL genomes with ultrasequencing techniques among the most exciting happenings in current lymphoma research. "These techniques could ultimately lead to the development of more individualized treatments," she stated.
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