Establishment of the ICGEB Regional Research Center at ”Nicolae Testemitanu” University – an initiative supported by State Authorities and International Organizations
The visit to Chisinau of Dr. Lawrence Banks, Director-General of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) from Trieste, Italy, also included meetings with representatives of the Parliament and the Government of the Republic of Moldova in order to familiarize the officials with the intention to establish a Regional Research Centre at Nicolae Testemitanu State University of Medicine and Pharmacy of the Republic of Moldova.
The Rector of Nicolae Testemitanu State University of Medicine and Pharmacy professor Emil Ceban, who accompanied the distinguished guest to the state institutions, mentioned that ICGEB selected Nicolae Testemițanu University as a reference centre for research in South-Eastern Europe. The visit of ICGEB Director-General to our country is aimed at identifying new research opportunities, including the evaluation of the construction project of the Biomedical and Health Research Centre – a structure of the National Institute for Health and Medical Research, according to ICGEB standards. Thanks to this centre, platforms for education and research, tools for the promotion and implementation of technological transfer and results of scientific research will be provided internationally, under the auspices of the ICGEB. For this purpose, the scientific event ICGEB & The Future of Science, is organized on 29 and 30 September, at our university, with the participation of experts from 15 countries.
During the dialogues with officials, Dr. Lawrence Banks briefly presented the ICGEB activity – a unique intergovernmental organization, originally established as a special project of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). Independent since 1994, it runs over 45 state-of-the-art laboratories in Trieste, Italy, New Delhi, India and Cape Town, South Africa and forms an interactive network with 66 member states, its objectives being aligned with those of the United Nations. The Centre has a key role in the development of biotechnology, promoting excellence in research, training and technology transfer to industry to directly contribute to the sustainable global development.
One of the objectives of ICGEB is to train young researchers according to the highest quality standards, with a view to achieving excellence in research, promoting scientific results at international level, developing the skills of researchers in fundamental fields - microbiology, human genetics, virology, bioengineering, pharmaceutical biotechnology, exchange of interstate experience, internationalization of research – so that they can apply the knowledge and good practices upon their return to the country.
The Minister of Health has stated that the institution represented by her aims to develop the field of research in medicine and health and is open to supporting future scientific projects.
Dr. Lawrence Banks appreciated the fruitful collaboration with Nicolae Testemitanu State University of Medicine and Pharmacy and the results achieved by the Republic of Moldova as a member state of ICGEB: "Although the country obtained membership status only in 2019, results were ensured in a short period, including the 3-month internship of a Nicolae Testemitanu researcher at ICGEB. The project aimed to identify and monitor the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the Republic of Moldova and to sequence samples collected from patients".
During the meeting with Dr. Banks, the President of the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova Igor Grosu expressed his desire that Nicolae Testemitanu State University of Medicine and Pharmacy should become as soon as possible that reference research centre in the Republic of Moldova, which will host high quality scientific research.
The Chair of the Parliamentary Committee for Culture, Education, Research, Youth, Sport and Mass Media, Liliana Nicolaescu-Onofrei welcomed the initiative to support young researchers and involve them in scientific projects.
Academician Stanislav Groppa, Vice-Rector for Research activity, launched the proposal to create a dialogue platform between ICGEB experts and the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova in the future. Thus, the jointly initiated projects will have a considerable impact for our country.
The visit program also included a meeting with the Minister of Education and Research of the Republic of Moldova. Minister Anatolie Topală welcomed the partnership established by Nicolae Testemitanu University with ICGEB and appreciated the University's initiative on strengthening these international cooperation relations, noting that scientists of our country are prepared to carry out high-quality research and capitalize on all opportunities of participation in various international programs and projects, thus contributing to the development of the research field in the Republic of Moldova and its alignment with international standards.
The Resident Coordinator of the United Nations Organization in Moldova, Simon Springett, and the representative of the World Health Organization in our country, Dr. Miljana Grbic, appreciated the idea of strengthening laboratory capacities in order to support a number of branches for conducting scientific research, implementing biotechnologies, carrying out technological transfer, development of genomics, etc. In this context, the representatives of UN bodies expressed their openness to continue this dialogue and discuss in detail the plan related to the establishment and activity of the Biomedical and Health Research Centre within the University and the ICGEB laboratory and the possibilities of connecting it to the national network of laboratories.
It should be mentioned that the Regional Research Centre will contribute to the strengthening of research skills, knowledge, and capacities of the local scientific community, and at the same time, it has specific objectives concerning research, training, and transfer of technologies to industry, for the benefit of the host country, in part, and of the geographical region in general.
The Republic of Moldova has been a full member of the ICGEB since March 6, 2019, and Nicolae Testemițanu State University of Medicine and Pharmacy represents the national contact point, responsible for collaboration with the international organization.
Preluarea informației de pe site-ul USMF „Nicolae Testemițanu” poate fi efectuată doar cu indicarea obligatorie a sursei și a linkului direct accesat pe www.usmf.md.