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Toni Gabaldón

Toni Gabaldón

Barcelona Supercomputing Center - Centro Nacional de Supercomputación & Institut de Recerca Biomèdica

Life & Medical Sciences

I'm a biochemist and molecular biologist by training. I obtained a PhD in Medical Sciences in 2005 (Radbout University Nijmegen). I was an EMBO postodoctoral fellow at the CIPF (Valencia) before starting my own group at the Bioinformatics and Genomics Department at the CRG (Barcelona, 2008-2019). In 2019 I joined as a Senior group leader the IRB and the BSC (Barcelona). I am ICREA Research professor since 2013 and EMBO member since 2021. I have been awardee of the ERC starting and consolidator grants and received awards such as the Margaret Dayhoff mid-career award (2017), correspondent membership of the Spanish Royal National Academy of Pharmacy, and membership of the Spanish Young Academy. I have co-authored over 250 articles, and founded one spin-off company. I have always used an evolutionary perspective to address different biological questions. I am not only interested in understanding how complex biological systems work, but also how they have come to be as they are.


Research interests

My main research interest is to understand the complex relationships between genome sequences and phenotypes and how these two features evolve within and across species. I generally use large-scale phylogenetics and molecular evolution approaches that allow looking at the evolution of genomes from the perspective of all of their genes, and apply these analyses to a variety of biological questions related to the evolution and function of biological communities, organisms, organelles, pathways, and families of protein-coding and non-coding genes. I have a special interest in understanding processes related to human pathogenesis. Through collaborations with experimental groups, I apply comparative genomics to discover new mechanisms and genes involved in interesting processes, especially those of clinical relevance. Given our exposure to new types and scales of data, my group has had the need to develop novel bioinformatics tools to fill in existing gaps.

Selected publications

– Chorostecki, Uciel; Saus, Ester; Gabaldon, Toni 2021, ‘Structural characterization of NORAD reveals a stabilizing role of spacers and two new repeat units’, Computational And Structural Biotechnology Journal, 19, 3245 – 3254.

– Vosseberg, Julian; van Hooff, Jolien J. E.; Marcet-Houben, Marina; van Vlimmeren, Anne; van Wijk, Leny M.; Gabaldon, Toni; Snel, Berend 2021, ‘Timing the origin of eukaryotic cellular complexity with ancient duplications’, Nature Ecology & Evolution, 5, pp. 92–100.

Gabaldon, Toni 2021, ‘Origin and Early Evolution of the Eukaryotic Cell’, Annual Review Of Microbiology, Vol 75, 2021, 75, 631 – 647.

Gabaldon, Toni 2021, ‘Roles of the human microbiome in cancer’, Hepatobiliary Surgery And Nutrition, 10, 4, 558 – 560.

– Pekmezovic, Marina; Hovhannisyan, Hrant; Gresnigt, Mark S.; Iracane, Elise; Oliveira-Pacheco, Joao; Siscar-Lewin, Sofia; Seemann, Eric; Qualmann, Britta; Kalkreuter, Till; Mueller, Sylvia; Kamradt, Thomas; Mogavero, Selene; Brunke, Sascha; Butler, Geraldine; Gabaldon, Toni; Hube, Bernhard 2021, ‘Candida pathogens induce protective mitochondria-associated type I interferon signalling and a damage-driven response in vaginal epithelial cells’, Nature Microbiology, 6(5):643-657.

– Angel Schikora-Tamarit, Miquel; Marcet-Houben, Marina; Nosek, Jozef; Gabaldon, Toni 2021, ‘Shared evolutionary footprints suggest mitochondrial oxidative damage underlies multiple complex I losses in fungi’, Open Biology, 11, 4, 200362.

– Ksiezopolska, Ewa; Angel Schikora-Tamarit, Miquel; Beyer, Reinhard; Carlos Nunez-Rodriguez, Juan; Schuller, Christoph; Gabaldon, Toni 2021, ‘Article Narrow mutational signatures drive acquisition of multidrug resistance in the fungal pathogen Candida glabrata’, Current Biology, 31, 23, 5314 – +.

– Hovhannisyan, Hrant; Gabaldon, Toni 2021, ‘The long non-coding RNA landscape of Candida yeast pathogens’, Nature Communications, 12, 1, 7317.


Selected research activities

– Elected EMBO member 2021

ICREA Memoir 2021