‘Unknown’ Lisbon hospital that shot into the limelight

The Portugal hospital where Lalit Modi’s wife was undergoing treatment is known for its advanced cancer research.

Written by Abantika Ghosh | Updated: June 19, 2015 4:47 am
Vasundhara Raje, lalit modi, raje, sushma-lalitrow, Charles Correa, raje, vasundhara raje, vasundhara, Rajasthan MoU with Lisbon hospital, Champalimaud Foundation, Lalit Modi wife operation, sushma swaraj, lalit sushma row, lalit modi controversy, sushma row, ipl, indian express The Centre, designed by architect Charles Correa, who passed away in Mumbai on Tuesday, is situated on the banks of Tagus river in Lisbon.

Last year, fallen IPL czar Lalit Modi sought for — and got — travel documents to Portugal, where his wife Minal was undergoing treatment at the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown. The hospital has remained largely ‘unknown’ in India but is considered to be one of the most exciting centres of medical research.

The Centre, designed by architect Charles Correa, who passed away in Mumbai on Tuesday, is situated on the banks of Tagus river in Lisbon. It gets its name from Antonio de Sommer Champalimaud, a Portuguese businessman and financier, who, in his will, provided for the setting up of the Champalimaud Foundation to develop programmes of advanced biomedical research and provide “clinical care of excellence”. The Foundation was set up in 2004, after Champalimaud’s death, and on October 5, 2010, the Centre was inaugurated.

The Centre is known for its “translational research”, a link between scientific breakthroughs and improvements in clinical care. One of the most important programmes at the Centre is on the biology of systems and metastasis that “seeks to understand and prevent cancer at a cellular level”.

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Dr P K Julka, professor of oncology at the Institute Rotary Cancer Hospital in AIIMS, says translational therapy is cutting-edge research. “It is what we call bench to bed. A new molecule that has been tested in the laboratory is administered on a patient. It is not a trial; it is a new option. The patient is told about the side-effects. This comes from research that is directly correlated to clinical practice rather than being in the domain of academics,” explains Dr Julka.

The Indian Express wrote to the Centre asking for details of the kind of treatment options offered to patients and its patient inflow. Maria Joao Soares, the person in charge of the Centre’s media relations, responded with a nine-page brochure. “Research and clinical trials are already underway in a number of areas as the Champalimaud Foundation works to make scientific breakthroughs available to patients,” says the page titled ‘Cancer’.

In reply to a query about the treatment of Minal Modi, Soares wrote: “The Centre does not comment on issues concerning patients”.

The Centre has a footprint in India through the Champalimaud Translational Centre for Eye Research (C-Tracer) in Hyderabad, the result of an agreement between the Champalimaud Foundation and the L V Prasad Eye Institute. The Department of Biotechnology has granted a five-year programme support to the Institute to aid the Centre in its activities.

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  1. H
    hvnavani
    Jun 20, 2015 at 5:26 pm
    Useful info for you
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    1. M
      Machomachosingh
      Jun 19, 2015 at 1:42 pm
      Has any of the media/news channels and the ilks of Goswami have ever dared to ask who funded the treatment of Sonia hi and from where the money has been arranged.....where the treatment was carried out.... Just b'coz somebody has been provided professional istance by the husband of the minister for such a long time (almost 22 years), should she resign...if so then everybody from the congress govt should have resigned, as the same party had awarded Shobhna Bhartiya, the owner of Hindustan times, Padmashri and with Rajya Sabha ticket...numerous examples are there.. Should not Sharad Pawar take Sanyas on the same grounds...
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      1. N
        narayan
        Jun 22, 2015 at 10:28 am
        hospital is not relevant. motives to be proved.
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        1. S
          SP
          Jun 19, 2015 at 11:45 am
          People were attributing motives to get the treatment done in Portugal.
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          1. S
            sr
            Jun 22, 2015 at 4:15 pm
            would you put the "Research and clinical trials are already underway in a number of areas as the Champalimaud Foundation works to make scientific breakthroughs available to patients" material in public.
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