Have you ever heard of epigenetics? It refers to the factors that makes a particular set of genes expressed, or not, in certain cells. In other words, it is the mechanisms and conditions behind the selection of the genes: for instance, twins have an identical genome but can evolve differently, one can be predisposed to develop disease while another is not.
Out of the 22 to 25,000 genes contained in our DNA, only 10 to 12,000 will be expressed in one cell and determine its characteristics. This is where epigenetics come into play.
Iannis Talianidis is the permanent holder of the Chair. His researches focus on metabolism disorders and liver cancer, but the research in epigenetics provides crucial knowledge on finding new ways to treat diseases. The objective of the Chair is also to promote scientific excellence in Epigenetics Greece and to bring together a pool of promising scientists working both for science and society.
For all of us working at AXA Greece, this day is a day of increased pride. On one side the work of a Greek researcher receives the highest possible support through the creation of an academic Chair, while on the other side the AXA Group, through its global activities, offers a support of important value to the Greek society. Health is an integral part of our daily work in Greece and the holistic protection we want to offer, starting today, receives a great boost.
The Chair, “Exploring Epigenetics: an extraordinarily promising field of medicine”, has been granted the amount of €1.2 million, and will be held for a duration of 12 years in Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Heraklion, Crete.
In a world of constant challenges and new types of emerging risks, we have to offer protection to society, especially in health. Supporting academic researchers around the world represents one of the most important actions undertaken by AXA. I am proud for our colleagues in Greece and for the fact that our Group, through the AXA Research Fund, offers such an important support in a highly promising field of health research for improving our lives.
About the AXA Research Fund
The AXA Research Fund is the scientific philanthropy initiative of global insurance leader AXA dedicated to boosting scientific discoveries that contribute to societal progress. It also encourages researchers to engage with the general audience and feed the public debate. It was born in 2007 out of the strong belief that science plays a critical role in empowering people to face today’s challenges and forge themselves a better life. So far, the AXA RF has supported 531 research projects, carried out by leading researchers of 55 nationalities and hosted in 34 countries.