ERC Starting Grant for Sabrina Oliveira

Sabrina Oliveira received a prestigious Starting Grant from the European Research Council. This 1.5 M€ grant is intended for excellent research proposals from young scientists, to help them to achieve independence and build their own research teams.

The grant will allow Sabrina Oliveira to expand her current line of research which is mainly focused on rendering photodynamic therapy more selective to cancer cells by using nanobodies. She will explore the immune system involvement upon nanobody-targeted photodynamic therapy, to understand whether possibilities exist for a systemic effect of this local therapy, by creating memory against cancer cells. In addition, she will evaluate this new treatment in dogs that enter the veterinary clinic with cancers that have no therapeutic option (e.g. prostate cancer), to understand the chances of this treatment to be effective also in humans.

Rendering photodynamic therapy more selective to cancers cells could greatly improve its current clinical application and thereby increase therapeutic options for cancer patients.

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