Investing in young researchers : Carlos story

Investing in young researchers : Carlos story

Carlos conducts live-saving research into cancer in Salamanca, Spain. He has been able to advance his studies thanks to support from the European Social Fund (ESF).


The ESF’s Operational Programme for Castile and Leon (2007-2013) contributes to the post-graduate study and training of about 200 young researchers across the region. The beneficiaries, who are based in universities and research centres, use the support to improve their technical research skills.

Along with assisting individual researchers, the ESF package is helping Castile and Leon to increase its R&D and innovative capacities. Funding is also provided for networking activities between the region’s universities, research centres and innovative companies.

Fighting cancer

Carlos is 27 and works at the Centro de Investigación del Cáncer (CSIC), where he specialises in prenatal lung maturation and respiratory responses to injury.


The biology of cells and biochemistry have always interested me,” says the graduate in cancer biology. “My family history, in which cancer has featured, made me question why diseases are what they are, and why they affect human beings as they do.”

After university, Carlos did an internship at Salamanca’s Cancer Research Centre. “My tutor suggested I apply for a grant co-funded by the European Social Fund. My thesis consisted of testing new anticancer drugs on colon and breast cancer cells.”

Positive results

Carlos feels that, after a lot of effort, he has managed to get some good results from his study and hopes to find applications in clinical tests.

My job is fascinating,” he adds. “I hope I will be able to continue with it and achieve something important to help people.”

For more information

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