Welcome to Pujana's Laboratory

Catalonia and democracy

20th September 2017

Un coup d’État du gouvernement espagnol en Catalogne?

Spagna, la guerra catalana

The Spanish police detained more than a dozen people in the region of Catalonia on Wednesday, drastically escalating tensions between the national government and Catalan separatists. The episode occurred less than two weeks before a highly contentious referendum on independence that the government in Madrid has vowed to block.

Spanish police have detained 14 Catalan officials and raided regional government ministries involved in organising an independence vote declared illegal by Spain's government.

BBC news

BBC news #2

Voting day, 1st October 2017

As Catalans Voted, ‘Dying With Fear’ at High School Turned Polling Place

Videos of the attacks of Spanish police against peaceful voters:









Half of the catalan government is in prision and half in exile (including elected president) because they took the decision to follow the results of a referendum where >2M million (38%) voted for independence. Of note the referendum took place with Spanish police violence and threats, with thousands of people peacefully defending the voting schools for >48h day-night. Several catalan governments and parties have asked 18 times to organize a legal referendum in accordance with Madrid's rules, but the central response has been always "NO!", regardless the fact that 70-80% of the Catalan population supports the organization of a referendum. This is happening today, in Europe, XXI century. Cents of thousands of people rally today to free political prisioners:



Spanish political leaders lack honesty and professionalism in many aspects of their work, including their approach to science and research. It is not true that they envision a change in the production model; they do not take decisions that would lead to such a change and simply wait for the "services" model to regain its strength. Decisions are often arbitrary and motivated principally by personal agendas. The statements made in the last years saying that research and science should be the driving force of the new economy, and that they will not cut research funding, were lies.



Save Science

Leaving Spain



"Presupuestos Generales del Estado 2014: Nuevo hachazo a la ciencia española"

L Guindos, Minister of Economy, Spain: "la I+D+i será "prioritaria" en los presupuestos de 2014"

"La investigación será prioritaria en los próximos presupuestos"

"Aznar subraya que la investigación es uno de los fundamentos prioritarios de su política"


Some R & D expenditure facts:

2012 Spain 1.30% of GDP; while Euro area average was 2.14% 

2012 Catalonia was 1.51% same year.


From 2001, Catalonia has developed a strong and top-quality biomedical research network. The model is based on leading institutes and investigators, which are outperformers in many aspects including fund raising and peer-review publications. The ICREA program has been key to achieve this situation, but in my opinion there is much to improve. In a scenario where the Catalan government has not its own competitive research grants, accountability for the ratio of goverment support received versus scientific impact is urgently need. Most importantly, we should be able to explain how we expend money and which is the impact in improving global health care and economic productivity. We should not anymore accept press-release statements like "our results will improve cancer cure in 5 years", "our results will open new precise/efficient therapies" if after that that period there is not expert review of the consequences of the research findings and fund expenses.

Education for our kids

If science has a minor role in primary education, we cannot aim (some don't want to) at our society becoming more critical, fair and prosperous. I agree that today's general lack of creativity and critical thinking is partially due to the rigidity of the educational curriculum, where science and tech has a minor role. Teaching by observing, discussing and reasoning the surrounding world has the potential to build a better and fairest society. The corresponding skills would also be fundamental in every part of a person live. Fortunately, we are changing our schools but it seems that it will take much long that the change wave arrives to our universities; this is an urgent need if we also want to consolidate the Catalan research network, including talented and well trained PhD students that will be future leaders.



If you have supported the release of political prisoners in Catalonia (through donation or purchase at the ANC or Omnium) please send me an email and I will send you a free photography from the catalog (go to Miscellany > Pictures).

Si has donat suport a l'alliberament dels presos polítics Catalans (a través de donació o compra a l'ANC o Omnium) envieu-me un correu electrònic i us faré arribar la fotografia que desitgeu del catàleg (aneu a Miscellany > Pictures).


Selected publications

2017. Stem cell-like transcriptional reprogramming mediates metastatic resistance to mTOR inhibition. Oncogene 36(19):2737-2749.

2016. Cancer network activity associated with therapeutic response and synergism. Genome Medicine 24;8(1):88.

2015. Integrating germline and somatic data towards a personalized cancer medicine. Trends Molecular Medicine 20(8):413-5.

2011. Interplay between BRCA1 and RHAMM regulates epithelial apicobasal polarization and may influence risk of breast cancer. PLoS Biology Nov;9(11):e1001199.

2010. Biological reprogramming in acquired resistance to endocrine treatment of breast cancer. Oncogene 29(45):6071-83.

2007. Network modeling links breast cancer susceptibility and centrosome dysfunction. Nature Genetics 39(11):1338-49.