ICREA Academia

Cristina Pujades

ICREA Academia 2015

Universitat Pompeu Fabra · Life & Medical Sciences

I am Full Professor at the Department of Experimental and Health Sciences of the Universitat Pompeu Fabra. I got my PhD in Biology in the Universitat de Barcelona (1991) and afterwards I went to the Dana Farber Cancer Institute at Harvard Medical School (Boston) as a postdoctoral fellow, where I worked in cell adhesion receptors. In late 1995, I moved to Paris to work in developmental neurobiology, first as a postdoctoral fellow at the École Normale Supérieure (1995-99) and then with an independent position at the Université Pierre et Marie Curie (1999-2010). In 2002, I joined the Department of Experimental and Health Sciences at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, where I served as Academic Secretary (2007-10) and Vice-Chair (2010-13). Since 2017, I am the Vice-Rector of Professorate at the UPF. My group works in questions related to how morphogenesis and cell fate acquisition are coordinated to build up the embryonic brain (pujadeslab.upf.edu).


Research interests

The assembly of functional neural circuits requires the specification of neuronal identities and the execution of developmental programs that establish precise neural network wiring. The regional plan of the vertebrate Central Nervous System is beautifully orchestrated by restricted expression of crucial genes during embryonic development. Noteworthy, the generation of this brain cell diversity takes place during embryogenesis, and one of the main unsolved questions is how multiple cell types are generated and maintained in highly organized spatial patterns upon brain morphogenesis. Our aim is to understand how spatiotemporally coordinated cell progenitor specification and differentiation occurs alongside morphogenesis to construct the functional brain. We combine high-resolution in vivo imaging with genomic edition, using the zebrafish embryo as a model system.


Keywords

Developmental neurobiology, segmentation, compartments, cell lineage, morphogenesis, neurogenesis, cell specification, life 3D-imaging