The Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens (BRFAA) is the most recent addition to the Life Sciences Research organizations in Greece, which begun its activities in 2004. It is located at a distance of 3 km from downtown Athens, and is housed in a modern 32,000 m2 building.
The founding principle of BRFAA is to host both basic and clinical research, thus, providing an ideal setting for the emergence of translational activities (Medical Application). BRFAA is one of the few institutes with such character in Europe and is certainly unique for Greece.
The main goal of BRFAA is to achieve excellence in the Biomedical Sciences by recruiting high quality investigators carrying out cutting-edge basic and translational research and by training young researchers in a state-of-the-art facilities, which provide a particularly stimulating scientific environment and strong research infrastructures.
At present, BRFAA consists of 4 Research Centers (Institutes) specialized in different aspects of Biomedical Research focusing on the following research areas: gene regulation, stem cells, neurobiology, developmental biology, aging, cancer, inflammation, stress and metabolic syndromes, cardiovascular pathophysiology and environmental health issues.
BRFAA research activities are supported by an impressive infrastructure of state-of-the-art core facilities, in addition to basic molecular biology equipment. All necessary heavy equipment to perform cutting-edge biomedical research are in place. Specifically, 22 modern molecular biology laboratories are supported by facilities for genomics, proteomics, flow-cytometry, cell sorting, laser capture microdissection, pharmacotechnology, advanced imaging (confocal and deconvolution microscopy, micro-PET/CT animal imaging etc), transgenic and gene targeting animal facilities, histology suite and Bioinformatics services. Core facilities are run by experts in their fields and are supported by annual budgets for personnel and reagents provided by the Foundation and research grants.
A state-of-the-art animal facility with individually ventilated cages that can house 20,000 mice as well as other animal species is in full operation. The Experimental Surgery unit is a state-of-the-art facility supporting any type of surgery and follow-up procedures. Veterinary supervision is available on a daily basis, and accreditation has already been obtained by the responsible European and National Committees.The Clinical Research infrastructure includes a 6-bed day clinic specialized in cardiovascular, metabolic, hematological and malignant diseases and is supported by the necessary medical personnel and infrastructure including a Positron Emission Tomography unit (PET-CT), echocardiography unit, cardiopulmonary exercise stress unit etc. It is notable that the Cord Blood Bank, which operates under the auspices of BRFAA, has made various contributions of stem cells, including several to the Children’s University Hospital that were used successfully in transplantations for the treatment of cases of hematological malignancy cases Moreover, the Center for Environmental Health, which is linked to a satellite, monitors continuously climate changes (ozone levels, solar radiation and atmospheric pollutants).