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More than 25 years of research at the service of people’s health

Throughout the history of the Vall d'Hebron Research Institute, people have been the key to us becoming the benchmark centre at the Catalan, Spanish and European level in the fields of basic, clinical and translational research - and they remain key to everything we do to this day.

Inauguració VHIR
Our early research activity

While research at Vall d'Hebron can be traced back to the 1960s, it was not until the 1970s —with the creation of the Department of Internal Medicine— that this activity was first promoted. In these early years, research activity was linked to the fields of Biochemistry and Experimental Cardiology.

The “Vall d'Hebron University Hospital Foundation for Research and Teaching” was officially established in 1994. This marked the launch of a project that seeks to promote research and provide support to research professionals.

Història Laboratori
The growth of our research

parate entities. As a result of this change, research at Vall d’Hebron was the responsibility of the “Research Institute Foundation”. In the same year, the Institute’s Board of Trustees and Governing Board were created.

Two years later, thanks to funds from the Regional Government of Catalonia and an anonymous construction company, the Institute focussed on converting an old warehouse into a new cardiology, hepatology, gastroenterology and infectious diseases research laboratory, This building also houses a pigsty and associated outbuildings.

Edifici Collserola
Consolidating our trajectory

Fifteen years after we first opened our doors, the Foundation obtained accreditation as a Health Research Institute by the Carlos III Health Institute (ISCIII). Four years earlier, we had promoted the creation of new laboratories, new teaching classrooms and the Scientific-Technical Support Unit (UCTS), which is now called the High Technology Unit (UAT).

In 2010 the Institute became a member of the CERCA Institution, which brings together Catalonia’s research centres. Since that year, the CERCA Institution has formed part of the VHIR’s Board of Trustees. That same year, the Foundation opened the state-of-the-art Collserola Building, expanding its research space by 2,500 m2. 

Becats Amics de Vall d'Hebron
Promoting citizen collaboration

In 2010, with the aim of conveying to citizens the importance of their collaboration in our continued research activity, the Foundation created a Patronage Unit which promoted the “Friends of Vall d’Hebron” project. A year later, it changed its brand name to the “Vall d'Hebron Research Institute”, with the acronym VHIR.

The expansion continued in the following years with the opening of a 625 m2 space for the Clinical Research Support Unit (USIC) and a 340 m2 module for the Bioinformatics department. The VHIR also became a University Research Institute of the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) and launched the Official Master’s Degree in Translational Biomedical Research.

Campus Vall d'Hebron aèria
Creation of the Vall d'Hebron Barcelona Hospital Campus

The Vall d'Hebron Barcelona Hospital Campus was officially opened in 2016. This is a project that seeks to enhance the pioneering spirit and leadership spirit of four separate institutions: the Vall d'Hebron University Hospital, the Vall d'Hebron Research Institute, the Vall d'Hebron Institute of Oncology and the Multiple Sclerosis Centre of Catalonia.

In the same year, the Institute’s Business Council was created to promote the participation of the business sector in VHIR activities, to advise its Management and the Board of Trustees, to collaborate in the detection of sectoral needs and to facilitate its access to public and private resources. 

Work begins on the new research building

In 2021 construction work began on the VHIR’s new research building, covering a total surface area of 16,757 m2. Once complete, this building will be fitted out with the latest technology in the field of advanced therapies. This new space will bring all the Institute’s professionals together in a single location, allowing them to share knowledge and experiences, promote synergies and increase collaboration and networking.

The future of personalised medicine is even closer with the new research building at Vall d'Hebron, which will connect research and society to improve people’s lives.