Eduardo Lopez-Collazo, Cuban Scientist: “I had to block my feelings in order to live”


Eduardo Lopez-Collaso is one of those Cubans who achieved freedom with their own hands. Left my beloved island 27 years ago – paradoxically, his father encouraged him. The state of the military Castro did not prevent him from wishing a better life for his little son. “Go ahead and don’t look back,” he told her. He went on his adventure, not knowing that what i left will never return… However, new opportunities have emerged.

Thanks to his efforts, study and work, he managed to make many of his dreams come true. Today he is a successful scientist.… He runs the Research Institute of the Universitario La Paz Hospital and, together with his team, has made important advances in the world of science. According to him, the balance is positive. Although he cannot help but show emotion when he tells his story that he wanted to share with readers Digital freedom

“It was worth for me to try to be true to myself, try to seek and fight for my dream, but entails a lot of losses… Three graves that I could not see, the graves of my three closest ones: my sister, my mother and my father, he explains. root that is, on that island called Cuba, and I call it metaphorical islandbecause it’s still a metaphor. ”“ For a long time I had what block my the senses for can live“, recognize.

As a child, the library was his home

“I spent my childhood in lost city Cuban geography called Jovellanos… “This is the only city in Cuba that bears the name of the outstanding Spaniard, humanist Gaspar de Jovellanos,” says Eduardo Lopez-Collaso with pride. The truth is that this place “did not offer many cultural or scientific opportunities.” In his imagination, he traveled to distant places, which aroused in him a curiosity to find out.

He did not grow up in an environment where science or culture abounded. However, he grew up “with the freedom of knowledge.” “This happened long time in the libraryuntil I was almost at home in the library, ”he explains. the only thing I’ve ever played with in my life “- he adds. Thanks to them”I dreamed of doing great things“I wanted to invent potions to make my mother immortal,” he exclaims.

He has been interested in science since childhood. In fact, a laboratory was set up in the barn from your home. Something like a barrack that served as an “operating room”. “He had a lizard heart transplant,” he laughs. His calling was obvious. His mother told him that from 8 years old clearly told him that “I wanted to be a nuclear physicistThis is as it should be, because he put all his energy into it. Today, Eduardo Lopez-Collazo is a nuclear physicist and doctor of pharmaceutical sciences.

I dreamed of doing science

In his case, it was not a dream to come to Spain. It was “doing science.” He wanted to become “Renaissance guy”… He loves art and culture in all their aspects. He has the opportunity to enjoy “ballet, science fiction book or novel by Vargas Llosa” and then “scientific treatise, paper as we say in science, ”he clarifies.

Therefore, “I wanted to go to a place where scientific development was incredible, but humanistic development was also very good.” All of this made him think of Europe as a destination. Paris, London, Berlin … But he came to Madrid, where he defended his doctoral dissertation, and fell in love with this city. So much so that when asked where he is from, he always replies: “Cuban by birth, Spanish by passport and madrilenian at heart”

Ballet and metastasis

Eduardo Lopez-Collazo was 25 years of research on human protection in pathological situations such as cancer, metastases and infectious diseases. In these areas, he made important contributions to scientific publications.

When he arrived coronavirus, his team learned exactly functioning of metastases. In particular, an aspect that could change the foundations of what we have known so far and what has already been proven “in certain types of cancer, such as lung cancer.” His theory is that “they are like horses from Troy“which can travel through our body”, say incognito “and transfer information about the tumor to any part of the body,” colonize areas remote from the place where it originated. “

This would have been achieved through the “merger”. And the best thing about this story is that it fell to such an extreme. watch a ballet figure during the play “Swan Lake”. “I thought about the problem we had in the laboratory, and then I saw this … Two dancers merge and create different things.”

Covid changed course

Then the covid came along and changed everything. At first he thought he had nothing to do. “I’m not a virologist,” he exclaims. So he sent his team home and they continued to “analyze the data and do what little could be done from there.” He even signed up for Chinese lessons, believing that he would have a lot of free time. But he was wrong. They soon realized that, according to information from China and Italy, “most dying patients for COVID they made for sepsis“This is one of the strengths of his research.

It is an infection that is accompanied by a disproportionate response from our immune system, with dire consequences for the body. The famous “cytokine storm”, which was so much talked about during the pandemic. “It’s like shooting atomic bombs to kill a cockroach“, Explain.

Then the scientist parked the Chinese and returned to the laboratory. Thanks to this, “doctors have tool to classify patients when they enter the emergency room. “With it, they can” anticipate whether you need to stay, whether you need to assisted breathing or You can die “

The myth of Cuban health

Paradoxes of life, although Eduardo Lopez-Collazo and his team have made important contributions to science and medicine in relation to covid, this disease has claimed lives his sister cannot do anything to prevent it. He died for lack of funds. “In Spain, he would have been saved”he exclaims, unable to contain his emotions. “The myth of Cuban health has become proof” of the pandemic.

As her husband explained, they spent the first two days “on the outskirts of the hospital, in the bank“. She was” with diarrhea and vomiting, “but her temperature did not go up too high. oxygen saturation dropped to 60%… “You are literally drowning,” the researcher warns.

He came to talk to the doctor who treated her, and was able to ask her, in the situation in which she was, they weren’t going to take her to intensive care… The answer was “did not meet international criteria“He died four hours later. It was terrible, “Lopez-Collazo admits,” it didn’t fit in my head. “

They have not seen each other “since the last century”, and this puts pressure on him. The only person he could see during this time was his mother, whom he once was able to take with him on vacation. He jokes that “he did not travel into space, he took time travel,” he exclaims. “When he arrived from Jovellanos to Madrid, he was amazed.”

Protected by dictatorship

Eduardo Lopez-Collaso doesn’t like to talk about politics. He is a man of science. Raises his voice several times, convinced that this makes him “more authoritative.” But what is happening in Cuba is “quite different: dictatorship.” “It’s not about left or right”highlights before starting the interview. This must be stated clearly: “No there is freedom of any kind. “

For his position, he condemns this absolute lack of freedom on the Caribbean island, as well as the problems faced by the population due to mismanagement of the regime… In fact, due to the criticism he made of the COVID vaccines produced there, in Cuban news broadcasts they blamed him to be “paid for by the CIA”

“Here I am constantly expressing my opinion about the management that the Spanish government exercises, and it does not spend at all,” he exclaims. “They publicly defended me”– he asserts with pain, “There are no middle terms in Cuba, Either you are for or you are against“There is no room for criticism, there is no term for democracy,” he adds.

But what saddens him most is that “this system is still supported by the Cubans.” Phenomenon attributed to “psychological dictatorship” to which they are subjected, and this “made them believe that they could not live if they were not under the protection of the regime.” For this reason, the importance movements such as “Homeland and Life”… Cuba needs “Freedom is the basis of everything”

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