Experiments for all

IRB Barcelona researcher, Eli Castellanos, in the last Edition of "Fes Recerca!"
IRB Barcelona researcher, Eli Castellanos, in the last Edition of "Fes Recerca!"

Researchers at IRB Barcelona collaborate with the Barcelona Science Park and the Caixa Catalunya in the workshop called "Do research!", which is aimed at the general public.

This week marks the start of the third series of "Fes Recerca!", a programme of workshops organized by the Barcelona Science Park and the Caixa Catalunya. This activity allows participants to perform some of the experiments currently being undertaken in laboratories at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), the Combinatorial Chemistry Platform at the Park and the Faculty of Psychology of the University of Barcelona.

Hosted in the Caixa Catalunya Foundation in the building called La Pedrera (Passeig de Gràcia, 92), the activity is free of charge and will be held every Saturday at 11h from 25 October until 29 November. In addition, during the week the Park’s OpenLAB will be held, which addresses the educational community. A total of 1,500 people will be able to play at scientists during this workshop.

These activities will address diverse topics: from how the analysis of DNA samples is used to investigate crimes, to the usefulness of the fruit fly to study several diseases, such as cancer, and the developmental stages of a drug -by participating in the synthesis of a drug to treat Parkinson’s disease. Those interested can choose the workshop in which they wish to participate; however, a previous reservation must be made as places are limited (www.pcb.ub.cat/fesrecerca).

This initiative is unequalled in the city since it is the researchers themselves who invite the public to perform activities included in their current lines of investigation. For this purpose, they relocate a part of their laboratories and equipment that they routinely use in order to give the public first-hand experience of the work they do. Elisabeth Castellanos, researcher in the Cell Division Laboratory at IRB Barcelona, guides the general public during their one-day experience at being a scientist in the fruit fly workshop.

"Do research!" forms part of the "Research in Society" programme organized by the Barcelona Science Park and aims to improve the scientific culture in the public at large and promote scientific vocation among young students.

This year’s series, which will open at 11h on Saturday in the Caixa Catalunya Foundation, located at La Pedrera, is especially directed at youngsters but everyone is welcome to come and enjoy the experience.