The Photonics Engineering Group (GIF) is an R + D + I group that focuses its activities on Light Sciences and Technologies (Photonics), horizontal (transversal) field, considered one of the six key technologies (KET's) for the development of Europe. Being horizontal, the GIF applies its knowledge, technique and resources platform (obtained or generated in any application sector) to solve real problems in any application sector, including health and medicine. Due to the structure of the GIF, to which it works in a horizontal field and its philosophy of action through which, in addition to the knowledge and exprofeso technique generated for each situation, it usually applies knowledge obtained or developed in various application sectors to solve problems in the Health and medical sector, the GIF assessment must be carried out for its overall production in the period of time considered.
In addition to the aforementioned and indicated in the different sections of this report, the group's activity in the strategic lines defined in its “Photonics for Life and Health” program is increasing over time both in terms of collaborations with researchers and clinicians from different specialties of both regional, national and European institutions and companies. The most relevant are described very succinctly:
Within the strategic line in Medical Diagnostic Tools based on photonic imaging techniques, activities have been developed in several INNVAL projects (DICUTEN, DAPatOO), to several INNVAL projectors and their associates Art.83 SIREBA I, DiFoMO, SIBER / Seeing associated to the INNVAL projects (INVAL15 / XX INNVAL17 / 10; INNVAL18 / 18) and the OSOCE project (INNVAL 19/13) in a DTS project (INTRACARDIO), in the project funded by the Parliament of Cantabria (POS-UC-2018- 16) that tries to transfer the optical biopsy by means of optical coherence tomography to clinical practice. It also works and leads in intramural projects (MultiCardio3D-OCT intramural with a group BBN of the UPM and intermurals.
(HyperMusclede, intermural with a group of the Hospital Sant Pau, CIBERER) of the GIF in the CIBER-BBN with other groups of the same CIBER and other CIBER of the IS Carlos III.
Within the strategic line in devices and systems (including smart ones) for a better diagnosis and monitoring of diseases with special emphasis on the elderly population, activities are developed within the INNyCRON project (INCVAL 17/05 directed by Carlos Viadero trying to assess the chronicity, sarcopena and frailty of the elderly through a structured light tool, and the activities included in the Challenges-Collaboration TeDFES project (RTC-2017-6321-1) presented at a press conference given its scope are being carried out. It also works and leads several intramural projects (NIST with an IBEC group in Barcelona) and intermural (TEDEI and PEDNED with groups of CIBER-SAM and CIBER-NET respectively) of GIF in CIBER-BBN with other groups of the same CIBER and others CIBER of IS Carlos III.
Within the line in light-matter interaction as the basis for new light-based therapies, the European project ENM JTC 2018 (PANIPAC) of the hypercompetitive EURONANOMED III program is being developed to develop a nanomedicine based on functionalized nanoparticles activated by light to activate the immune system against pancreatic cancer. On the other hand, the CIBER-BBN and CIBER-ONC (NaTBiL) seed project was obtained in a competitive public call (including oral defense before a jury of 24 members in the ISC III), in which, in collaboration with a From ONCOMET research in Santiago de Compostela, the feasibility of internal PDT therapies activated by light generated by bioluniscence has been worked on. Likewise, we work on the intramural project of CIBER-BBN (ACTI-BUBBLE) with nine other CIBER-BBN groups focused on the development of a nanomedicine to fight tumors in the brain.
Likewise, within the framework of projects financed with funds from the national plan, of companies and of their own, work is being carried out on the development of detection and measurement systems of interest for health, with regard to optical devices to guarantee food quality being explicitly mentioned.
About PEG-JM-Review CHUs-JM (16-03-2017)
Photonics (Light Sciences and Technologies) has been declared by the European Union one of its six Key Enabling Technologies and by USA one of its essential technologies for its development. It is a horizontal (or transversal) field of knowledge with impact in all the application sectors.
The Photonics Engineering Group (PEG) of the University of Cantabria generates knowledge and technique in the Photonic field with a special focus on solving real problems (not yet resolved or insufficiently determined) and, in the search for their solution, generate knowledge and technique that gives rise to publications, thesis and patents. During this process Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) can be used as an appropriate supplement.
PEG is formed by 26 research, scientific and technical staff following a dynamic model, where a part of the members are dedicated more intensively to the generation of knowledge and training, during a period of time, and the others, to the application of knowledge and technique performing development and innovation for the optimization of their interaction and the transference of results to the productive sector. This, in turn, feedback the group with real problems to be solved and resources to best carry out their mission.
PEG has a R&D&I Photonics Laboratory (457 m2) equipped with facilities of Optical Fiber, Optical, Opto-Electronic, Electronic, Climatic, Thermal imaging characterization, Additive Manufacturing, Lasers, etc.
More than 50 R&D&i projects have been carried out with companies to improve their production processes or the quality of their products; or even, to innovate or to develop new products. The developed (and transferred) knowledge and technique have been able to improve their productivity and/or ensure their qualities. In addition, four spin-offs have emerged from PEG: TELNOS, Optical and Telecommunications systems (2005); Empiric Technologies, SL (2010), Sadiq Engineering (2011) and Edronica (2016).
Main Research Lines
Since its foundation (1992) PEG has been focused on Photonic/Optical/Fiber optic sensors; fiber light sources; Optoelectronics Instrumentation; Techniques of detection, Measurement and Monitoring of events and processes using image for any sector of application.Without neglecting collaborations proposed from other sectors, PEG has very recently decided to focus its work on R&D&I, mainly, in life sciences and health. This decision is backed by a great progress in the Photonics knowledge, methods and techniques able to be used in biological sciences and health that are significantly contributing to the solution of several of the "societal challenges" of our time [as defined in the Lund Declaration www.vr.se/lunddeclaration2015 ].
PEG has joined the Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red (CIBER-BBN) of IS Carlos III (2016), and also joined at the Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria de Valdecilla (IDIVAL) and set the "Photonics for the Life and Health" program which includes four strategic R&D lines:
- Medical diagnostic tools based on Photonic Imaging (Multi, Hyperspectral, OCT, Thermografy, etc);
- Devices and Systems (including those referred to as smart ) for a better diagnosis and monitoring of diseases with special emphasis in the elderly population;
- Interaction of light-matter as a basis for new therapies based on light and/or the manufacture of micro/nano structures by interaction of laser-matter for diagnosis and therapy;
- Optical devices without contact and Optoelectronic Efficient Systems (low cost or cost-effective) for quality and safety and security of food.