María José Alonso, Professor of Biopharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Technology at the University of Santiago de Compostela (USC), has been recognized with the Honorific Award for Excellence in Scientific Research for her career as a researcher in the field of biopharmacy. This is an initiative of the AstraZeneca Foundation that seeks to recognize and foster scientific innovation. The award ceremony will take place on February 10th, 2021.

The Honorific Award has been awarded since 2017 to clinical researchers with a proven career in biomedical research and who have contributed to the generation of knowledge and advances in their specialty and to the training of new researchers.

For Professor Alonso “it is an honor to have received this award, which is a recognition to many researchers who have accompanied me along my career. This type of initiative highlights the importance of research in society and motivates us to continue working every day and achieve significant progress to improve the quality of life of many people. Investing in science is investing in the future”.

Celia Cortijo, director of the AstraZeneca Foundation, said: “we would like to sincerely congratulate Professor Alonso Fernández for this recognition and thank her for her excellent work. We are proud to be able to value her professional career and dedication to science through this honorary award”.

About AstraZeneca Foundation

The AstraZeneca Fundation is a non-profit organization that aims to consolidate a more innovative, more sustainable and more participatory National Health System. They make their resources and knowledge available to society, promoting the participation of patients, supporting the development of scientific talent and excellence in healthcare management.

Alonso’s research trajectory

María José Alonso is full professor of Biopharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Technology at the University of Santiago de Compostela (USC). From 2006-2010, she was the Vice-rector of Research and Innovation of the USC. She has worked as a visiting scientist at University of Paris XI, (1986-87), at University of Angers, France (1989) and at MIT, US, during 1991-1992 and in 2012.

Her lab ( has 3-decades experience in the formulation of macromolecules, i.e. peptides, proteins, antigens, monoclonal antibodies and polynucleotides using polymer-based delivery systems, and has pioneered numerous discoveries in the field of Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology and nanomedicine. María J. Alonso has coordinated several research consortia financed by the WHO, the Gates Foundation and the European Commission. She is the most cited author in Spain in the area of Pharmacy and Pharmacology and has been among the TOP TEN in Pharmacology (Times Higher Education international ranking, 2010) (H Index 94). Recently, she become part of the “Power List” of the most influential researchers in the field of Biopharmaceuticals (The Medicine Maker, 2020).

She has also been very active transferring her knowledge to industry. She is the inventor of 22 patent families, most of them licensed to industry and she has been part of 3 start-up ventures.

She has served to the Controlled Release Society (CRS) for 15 years and she has been President of the CRS (2017-19). She is also Editor-in-Chief of the “Drug Delivery and Translational Research”, an official journal of the CRS, and she is part of the editorial board of 12 journals.

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