Helsinn, a chemical pharmaceutical group based in Lugano, Switzerland, has awarded a grant for the sum of CHF 30,000 (€20,270) to the Institute of Research in Biomedicine (IRB) in Bellinzona, under the direction of Antonio Lanzavecchia. The grant will be used for research work performed by Markus Manz, in the field of haematopoiesis, with a focus on the study in blood stem cells and the development and pathologies of the hemato-lymphoid system.
“We believe that Professor Manz’s work will help us to better understand the characteristics of certain diseases and therefore potentially develop targeted drugs,” said Riccardo Braglia, Helsinn’s Chief Executive Officer.
Manz manages the IRB haematology laboratory and works as haematologist at the Oncology Institute of Southern Switzerland. IRB researchers are working to advance knowledge of the human immune system, with a particular interest in defence mechanisms against infectious and neurodegenerative diseases, and cancer.
The researchers have developed several programmes that have the potential of being translated into new therapies. Manz and his colleagues have demonstrated that mice reconstituted with a human hemato-lymphatic system can be used as models of human pathologies.