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"Vi per Vida" makes its first donation to metastasis research at IRB Barcelona

26 Mar 15




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The charity organisation founded a year ago donates the first 3,800 euros collected in two wine-tasting events held in 2014 and announces three more events for 2015.

In 2014, Vi per Vida brought together more than 750 people, 20 organisations and celebrities from various fields in the wine-tasting events held in Mollerussa and Calella.

Vi per Vida is a generous and exemplary initiative. It is crucial that the general public help us to raise awareness in society as a whole, that it values research, and wants to contribute to it,” says Joan Guinovart, director of IRB Barcelona.

Today, Xavier Ayala, president and founder of the charity organisation Vi per Vida, founded in March 2014, has presented Joan Guinovart, director of the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), with the first donation of the charity amounting to 3,800 euros. This was collected through small contribution from members of the public during two wine-tasting events held in Mollerussa and Calella in 2014. Vi per Vida has announced three more wine-tasting gatherings and new fund-raising activities for 2015.

Set up by Xavier Ayala, a sommelier from the Catalan town of Mollerussa, with the support of the Ayala-Cots family, Vi per Vida aims to raise awareness about metastasis—the spread of a primary tumour to distant organs, a process that causes 90% of deaths from cancer—and to contribute to the work being carried out in this field in competitive research labs in Catalonia.

Vi per Vida is a homage to my father, who died of lung metastasis when I was 11 years old. A year ago the opportunity arose to turn by dream into reality by bringing together wine and charity fund-raising activities to collect money for research. We are delighted to support IRB Barcelona,” says Xavier Ayala. On his part, Joan Guinovart is grateful to Vi per Vida for “having convinced so many people to participate and for having established alliances between organisations and winemakers to go ahead with the wine-tasting events and to raise awareness and collect funds for research. This is a very generous and exemplary initiative and it has inspired other people to collaborate with our centre”. IRB Barcelona develops several cutting-edge research projects devoted to metastasis.

The two wine-tasting events held so far have involved the participation and collaboration of more than 750 people and 20 organisations, such as the Department of Agriculture of the Catalan Government, the Institut Català de la Vinya i el Vi (INCAVI), the town councils of Mollerussa and Calella, 11 winemakers from various regions holding DO recognition (Denomination of origin), local associations, restaurants, catering schools, and business sponsors. Furthermore, various popular Catalan figures have supported and promoted Vi per Vida, such as the researcher Joan Massagué, the restauranteurs Joan, Josep and Jordi Roca and Carme Ruscalleda, the illustrator Pilarín Bayés, the actors Carlos Latre and Quim Masferrer, the journalist Elisabet Carnicé, the musician David Carabén from Mishima, and the motorbike racer Àlex Márquez.

Xavier Ayala has announced that the charity is already working on the organisation of three more wine-tasting events for 2015 along the same lines as those held previously. The next one will be held at the beginning of May during the 5th Wine and Cava Fair Vigralla del Baix Penedès, and others will also be repeated in Mollerussa, on 23 May, and in Calella, in the autumn. In addition, Vi per Vida is launching other activities in collaboration with various organisations, such as the Basque restaurant Maitea in Barcelona, which offers fund-raising tapas. It is also working on the production of the first charity Vi per Vida wine with the vintner ATRoca, which will become available in the coming months, and also with other local wineries in Catalonia.

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).