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Fran Supek becomes an EMBO Young Investigator

13 Nov 19




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In 2017, Fran Supek started his research group at IRB Barcelona devoted to statistical genomics.

Through its Young Investigator Programme, EMBO identifies and supports some of the best young researchers in the life sciences.

Fran Supek, ICREA researcher at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), together with another 27 scientists from Europe and the rest of the world, has joined the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) through its Young Investigator Programme.

Supek heads the Genome Data Science Laboratory, where he applies cutting-edge analytical techniques involving Big Data and machine learning analyses to study the genomic data of human populations, tumour genomes, microbial genomes and microbiomes. The group’s particular interest are mutagenic processes that cause genomes to evolve due to DNA repair gone awry, examined in the ERC-funded project “HYPER-INSIGHT”.

The EMBO Young Investigator Programme gathers researchers under the age of 40 who are in the first four years of heading their own research group and who have a proven track record of scientific excellence. This programme already has a network of 129 young investigators and 340 former members. As part of the programme, the researchers and his/her team receive funding and other support over four years, as well as the opportunity to network.

“I see the EMBO Young Investigator Programme as a fantastic opportunity to meet like-minded researchers who focus on doing exciting, world-class science. I hope this will spark many collaborations with great labs in other European countries and beyond,” says Supek.

EMBO director Maria Leptin said in a statement, "The first years as an independent researcher can daunting, and we hope to provide these 27 scientists with the support they need to develop independent research careers."


Fran Supek’s career


Fran Supek holds a BSc in Molecular Biology and a PhD from the Faculty of Sciences and Mathematics of the University of Zagreb (Croatia). In 2010, he came to Barcelona, where he joined the EMBL/CRG Systems Biology Research Unit at the Centre for Genomic Regulation as a Marie Curie postdoctoral fellow. There, he worked in the “Systems Genetics” lab, headed by Ben Lehner, where he addressed the genomes of human tumours. In April 2017, he joined IRB Barcelona as a Ramon y Cajal fellow to set up the Genome Data Science lab, which comprises a highly interdisciplinary team capable of tackling cancer genomics and population genomics from a unique perspective.


Find out more about Supek in this interview:




More information: EMBO press release


About IRB Barcelona

Created in 2005 by the Generalitat de Catalunya (Government of Catalonia) and University of Barcelona, IRB Barcelona is a Severo Ochoa Centre of Excellence, a seal that was awarded in 2011. The institute is devoted to conducting research of excellence in biomedicine and to transferring results to clinical practice, thus improving people’s quality of life, while simultaneously promoting the training of outstanding researchers, technology transfer, and public communication of science. Its 27 laboratories and eight core facilities address basic questions in biology and are orientated to diseases such as cancer, metastasis, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and rare conditions. IRB Barcelona is an international centre that hosts 400 employees and more than 30 nationalities. It is located in the Barcelona Science Park. IRB Barcelona is a CERCA center, and a member of the Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST).