The CBGP researcher, Ángel Goñi-Moreno has been awarded with the prestigious Margarita Salas 2022 research prize from the Community of Madrid. This award recognizes excellent researchers (under 40 years old) of the Madrid Region.
The Community of Madrid introduced for the first time in 1998 the awards to acknowledge the importance of Scientific Research and Technological Innovation in the region of Madrid. The awards bear the name of three distinguished Spanish researchers, the physicist Miguel Catalán, the philosopher Julián Marías and the biochemist Margarita Salas, in recognition to their contributions to knowledge advance and dedication to research and innovation.
Ángel Goñi-Moreno, group leader at the Centre for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics (CBGP, UPM-INIA/CSIC), has been awarded with the Margarita Salas prize that recognizes prominent scientists under the age of 40 who already significantly contributed to the scientific progress. This award is a recognition of the excellence of Angel Goñi research and his professional career trajectory.
The objective of the awards is not only to recognize the research activity and excellence but also to stimulate young scientist and researchers in the region to value the research activity as a contribution to the progress of society.
Ángel Goñi-Moreno is a researcher at the Center for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics (CBGP, UPM-INIA/CSIC), a joint center between UPM and INIA-CSIC, that has received the seal of excellence Severo Ochoa . Ángel has a Modality 1 Atracción de Talento (Talent Attraction) contract from the Community of Madrid, which allowed him to join the CBGP (UPM-INIA/CSIC) in September 2020. He is currently leading the research group “Biocomputing with synthetic biological systems” and is integrated into the new area of Synthetic Biology and Bioengineering (SynBIO2) of the CBGP (UPM-INIA/CSIC). His research deals with the design and implementation of living biological systems with novel functions. Combining theory with experiments, Ángel modifies microbial cells and molecular networks in a process like the programming of computers. Previously he was Principal Investigator and Professor at Newcastle University, in the United Kingdom (2016-2020). Ángel has a PhD in Computer Engineering (UPM) and gained experience in synthetic biology, systems biology and biophysics during his postdoctoral stays at the Manchester Metropolitan University in the United Kingdom (2010-2013) and at the National Center for Biotechnology (CNB) of the CSIC (2013-2016). His interdisciplinary profile between computer science, engineering and biology gives a unique character to his scientific activity. He was awarded the First Grant Award from the EPSRC (United Kingdom, 2017), and he is currently leading several research projects (AEI Spanish National Plan and CAM Synergy, started in 2021).
Most recently, Ángel received the prestigious Consolidator Grant from the European Research Council (ERC) for the ECCO project - Evolutionary Cellular Computing for Environmental Synthetic Biology, securing more than two million euros (2.1 mill. €) in the funding. ECCO focuses on programming bacteria for use as bioremediation agents. This project will use synthetic biology to offer solutions in scenarios of environmental degradation.