I joined the BarcelonaBeta Brain Research Center (BBRC) at the Fundació Pasqual Maragall in 2018 with a Marie Sklodowdska-Curie Fellowship to lead research on new blood biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases, in collaboration with the Sahlgrenska Academy (University of Gothenburg). In 2020, I was awarded with the prestigious European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant for the HeBe project, which aims to discover blood factors with a rejuvenating or ageing effect on the human brain that can thus become therapeutic targets for AD and other age-related brain diseases. Moreover, in our new translational neurology and biomarkers group, we develop and validate novel fluid biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases.
As a clinical neurologist, I also provide care to patients living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias in Hospital del Mar.
I studied Medicine and Biochemistry in Barcelona, becoming specialist in Neurology and graduating with a PhD in the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau. Before joining the BBRC, I worked for the DZNE and the Ludwig-Maximilians Universität in Munich, as a member of Prof. Christian Haass research group. As a clinician, I carried out a visiting fellowship in the Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical school in Boston (under Prof. Bradley Hyman’s supervision) and at the Dementia Research Center in the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London (under the supervision of Prof. Nick Fox).
My research interests are mainly focused on the molecular pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases, as well as on the development of fluid biomarkers in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). I have combined my clinical experience with a strenuous activity as a basic researcher, proven by my publications in high-impact journals, such as Science Translational Medicine, EMBO Molecular Medicine, Acta Neuropathologica or Neuron.
- Description of the main fluid biomarkers changes in the early stages of the Alzheimer’s continuum.
- Development of CSF sTREM2 as a marker of microglial activity in Alzheimer’s disease.
- Description of the first post-translational modification specifically associated with FTLD-FUS, namely monomethylated arginine (MMA) FUS.
- Characterization of Tau propagation in a mice model or early Alzheimer’s disease
Current Research duties:
I am currently leading the HeBe project, which investigates ageing and rejuvenating blood factors that have an effect on brain health. The ultimate goal of the HeBe project deliver a set of robust circulating blood metabolites that are new possible therapeutic targets in AD.
Moreover, we develop novel fluid biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases in its earlier stages and we perform clinical biomarker studies in the ALFA study.
- Lecturer in “Escola de Patologia del Llenguatge” (Language’s pathology school), Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, Barcelona.
- Professional affiliations:
- General Medical Council (United Kingdom).
- Catalan Society for Neurology.
- Spanish Society for Neurology.
- Society for CSF analysis and clinical Neurochemistry.
- Col·legi de metges de Barcelona.
- 2016: PhD (summa cum laude) in the Medicine department program, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Barcelona.
- 2009: Title of Specialist in Neurology.
- 2004: Medical Degree, School of Medicine, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Barcelona.
- 2004: Master of Science (MSc) in Biochemistry, Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona.
Previous professional duties:
- 2017: Honorary clinical assistant at the Dementia Research Centre (Prof. Nick Fox), Institute of Neurology, University College of London, London, United Kingdom.