History UCM 1

The Neurovascular Research Unit (UIN), integrated in the Department of Pharmacology of the Faculty of Medicine of the UCM, is coordinated by Professor Ignacio Lizasoain (University Professor). The Unit is made up of another Professor, two Senior Lecturers, a Lecturer and a manager. The UIN is forged with a two-pronged approach, teaching and research. As part of a University Department, a cardinal objective of the Unit is to train future teachers and researchers, and contribute to the generation of new knowledge. In its research aspect, the UIN focuses on the research of neurovascular pathology from a basic point of view and with a strong translational projection. Another of UIN's aims is to generate results that can be transferred to industry and improve our country's capacity for innovation.

Within the neurovascular pathology, the main lines developed in the UIN are the following: i) Search for new targets for the treatment of cerebrovascular pathology: nuclear receptors PPARgamma and LXR; Tolllike receptors; cannabinoid receptors. ii) Innate immunity and stroke. iii) Cerebral ischemic tolerance. iv) Hemorrhagic transformation. v) Search for diagnostic and prognostic markers of cerebrovascular pathology. vi) Neurorepair in stroke. vii) Multiparametric image of vascular competition in stroke.

Dentro de la patología neurovascular, las líneas principales desarrolladas en la UIN son las siguientes: i) Búsqueda de nuevas dianas para el tratamiento de la patología cerebrovascular: receptores nucleares PPARgamma y LXR; receptores Toll­like; receptores cannabinoides. ii) Inmunidad innata e ictus. iii) Tolerancia isquémica cerebral. iv) Transformación hemorrágica. v) Búsqueda de marcadores diagnósticos y pronósticos de la patología cerebrovascular. vi) Neurorreparación en el ictus. vii) Imagen multiparamétrica de la competencia vascular en el ictus.


Ignacio Lizasoain Hernández.

Professor in the Department of Pharmacology at the Faculty of Medicine of the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM), he graduated in Medicine and Surgery at the UCM in 1986, and obtained his doctorate in Medicine in 1992 (Extraordinary Prize).

Since 1986 he has held various positions as an FPI Fellow, Marie Curie Fellow, Assistant Doctor, Full Professor and, since 2007, Professor. He carried out post-doctoral stays at the Wellcome Foundation Ltd (Beckenham. United Kingdom) with Prof. Salvador Moncada from 1991 to 1994 and at Massachusetts General Hospital (Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA) with Prof. Eng H. Lo in 2010. He has also been External Examiner of Trinity College Dublin (Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. University of Dublin, Ireland) from 2008 to 2010.

He is currently or has been Principal Investigator of three international projects (Human Capital and Mobility EU, NIH USA, NATO), more than 20 national projects (SAF, FIS, RETICS), more than 15 regional and/or local projects (Community of Madrid), and several projects funded with private funds. As a result of his research activity, he has published numerous works in the field of neuroscience and neurological sciences, especially in the field of neurovascular research. Her scientific production includes more than 155 JCR articles that have received more than 9,000-13,000 citations, with an "h index" of 54/62 (Scopus/Google scholar, July-2018). The complete list of publications can be found at Scopus and Orcid (no. 0000-0002-6028-7379). He is also co-editor of 6 textbooks, co-author of more than 60 book chapters, co-inventor of 3 patents and co-director of 19 doctoral theses.

In the Complutense University he has been Director of the Department of Pharmacology of the Faculty of Medicine of the UCM (2006-2010), Academic Secretary of the same Department (2010-2015), Coordinator of the Campus of Excellence Moncloa UCM-UPM in 2010 and of the i-Health Cluster from 2009 to date. Vice-chancellor of Scientific Policy, Research and Doctorate since 2015. Finally, he is Co-director of the Neurovascular Research Unit of the UCM.

Jesús Miguel Pradillo Justo.

Lecturer in the Department of Pharmacology of the Faculty of Medicine of the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM). He took a degree in Biological Sciences at the UCM in 2000, and obtained his doctorate in Sciences in 2008 (Extraordinary Prize).

Since 2002 he has held various positions as a predoctoral fellow Complutense, Contracted Postdoctoral PICATA (Campus of International Excellence Moncloa), Contracted Postdoctoral Madrid + Vision - Marie Curie, Assistant Professor and since 2018, Contracted Professor Doctor. He has made international stays in 2006 as a predoctoral scholar at Trinity College (Pharmacy School, Dublin, Ireland) and as a postdoctoral researcher from 2009 to 2013 at the University of Manchester, United Kingdom.

His career as a researcher has focused on the study of different aspects related to cerebral ischemia. He has been Principal Investigator of three projects, one international (Investing in Success Program, University of Manchester, United Kingdom), one inter-university (Picata Project, Complutense University - Autonomous University of Madrid) and one European (Madrid + Advanced Felloships Vision, Community of Madrid - FP7-MSCA-COFUND). He has also been a team member and collaborator in 16 national or regional projects (SAF, FIS, RETICS, Comunidad de Madrid).

Carolina Peña Martínez.

Degree in Psychology from the Complutense University of Madrid, specialized in the areas of Clinical Neuropsychology, as well as in Neuroscience through the realization of two masters in ITEAP and the Complutense University of Madrid, respectively. She is currently a member of the UIN as a predoctoral contract through the Aid for predoctoral contracts for research staff in training granted by the Ministry of Education, Social Policy and Sport during the academic year 2015/2016 for the completion of the doctoral thesis in the research group Neurovascular Research Unit (UIN).

Violeta Durán Laforet.

Graduated in Pharmacy from the Complutense University of Madrid. Victoria Eugenia Rodríguez García" Grade Award. Collaboration grant awarded by the Ministry of Education, Social Policy and Sport during the academic year 2015/2016 for the initiation of research in the research group Neurovascular Research Unit (UIN). Currently a member of the UIN in the capacity of predoctoral contract through the Aid for predoctoral contracts of research personnel in training (UCM-Harvard).

Alicia García Culebras.

  • Degree in Biology at the UAM in 2009
  • Master in Microbiology at UAM in 2010
  • Doctor in Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biomedicine at UCM in 2017.
  • Predoctoral stay of the Roslin Institute (University of Edinburgh) in 2015 (from 1.5.2015 to 2.8.2015) in the laboratory of David Hume and Barry McColl.
  • Extraordinary doctoral thesis award at UCM in 2018.


  1. DeGregorio-Rocasolano N, Martí-Sistac O, Ponce J, Castelló-Ruiz M, Millán M, Guirao V, García-Yébenes I, Salom J, Ramos-Cabrer P, Alborch E, Lizasoain I, Castillo J, Davalos A, Gasull T. Iron-loaded transferrin (Tf) is detrimental whereas iron-free Tf confers protection against brain ischemia by modifying blood Tf saturation and subsequent neuronal damage. Redox Biology. 2018. 15: 143-158. FI: 6.337 Nº 34/290 BMB (JCR/2016). 1Q


  1. Sánchez-Cruz A, Villarejo-Zori B, Marchena M, Zaldivar-Diez J, Palomo V, Gil C, Lizasoaín I, de la Villa P, Martínez A, de la Rosa EJ, Hernández-Sánchez C. Modulation of GSK3 provides cellular and functional neuroprotection in the rd10 mouse model of retinitis pigmentosa. Molecular Neurodegeneration. 2018. 16;13(1):19. FI: 6.780. Nº 19/259 NS (JCR/2016) 1D


  1. Fernández G, Moraga A, Cuartero MI, García-Culebras A, Peña-Martínez C, Pradillo JM, Sacristán S, Fernández-López D, Martin ME, Moro MA, González VM, Lizasoain I. TLR4-binding DNA aptamers show a protective effect against acute stroke in animal models. Molecular Therapy.  2018. 1;26(8):2047-2059. FI: 6.688. Nº 9/128 Medicine, Research and Experimental (JCR/2016) 1D


  1. García-Yébenes I, Fernández-López D, Díaz-Guzmán J, Negredo MP, Avendaño C, Castellanos M, Gasull T, Dávalos A, Moro MA, Lizasoain I. Iron overload exacerbates the risk of hemorrhagic transformation after tPA administration in thromboembolic stroke mice. Stroke. 2018. 49(9):2163-2172. FI: 6.032. Nº 17/194. Clinical Neurology (JCR/2016). 1D


  1. Pradillo JM, Murray KN, Coutts GA, Moraga A, Oroz-Gonjar F, Boutin H, Renzova E, Molina-Holgado F, Moro MA, Lizasoain I, Rothwell NJ, Allan SM. Reparative effects of Interleukin-1 receptor antagonist in young and aged/co-morbid rodents after cerebral ischemia. Brain Behav Immun. 2017. 61: 117-126. FI: 5.964; Nº30/258. NC. (JCR/2016). 1Q


  1. Bravo-Ferrer I, Cuartero MI, Zarruk JG, Pradillo JM, Hurtado O, Romera VG, Díaz-Alonso J, García-Segura JM, Guzmán M, Lizasoain I, Galve-Roperh I, Moro MA. Cannabinoid type-2 receptor drives neurogenesis and improves functional outcome after stroke. Stroke. 2017. 48: 204-212. FI: 6.032; Nº16/194. CN. (JCR/2016). 1D


  1. García-Culebras A, Palma-Tortosa S, Moraga A, García-Yébenes I, Durán-Laforet V, Cuartero MI, de la Parra J, Barrios-Muñoz AL, Díaz-Guzmám J, Pradillo JM, Moro MA, Lizasoain I. TLR4 mediates hemorrhagic transformation after delayed t-PA administration in situ thromboembolic stroke. Stroke. 2017. 48: 1695-1699. FI: 6.032; Nº16/194. CN. (JCR/2016). 1D


  1. Hernandez-Jimenez M, Peña-Martinez C, Godino MC, Diaz-Guzman J, Moro MA, Lizasoain I.Test repositioning for functional assessment of neurological outcome after experimental stroke in mice. Plos One. 2017. 12(5): e0176770. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0176770. FI: 2.806. Nº15/64 MS (JCR/2016). 1Q


  1. Palma-Tortosa S, García-Culebras A, Moraga A, Hurtado O, Perez-Ruiz A, Durán-Laforet V, de la Parra J, Cuartero MI, Pradillo JM, Moro MA, Lizasoain I. Specific features of svz neurogenesis after cortical ischemia: a longitudinal study.  Scientific Report. 2017. 27;7(1):16343. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-16109-7. FI: 4.259. Nº 10/64 MS (JCR/2016). 1Q


  1. Hernández-Jiménez M, Martínez-López D, Gabandé-Rodríguez E, Martín-Segura A, Lizasoain I, Ledesma MD, Dotti CG, Moro MA. Seladin-1/DHCR24 is neuroprotective by associating EAAT2 glutamate transporter to lipid rafts in experimental stroke. Stroke. 2016. 47: 206-13. FI: 6.032; Nº16/194. CN. (JCR/2016). 1D


  1. Moraga A, Gómez-Vallejo V, Cuartero MI, Szczupak B, San Sebastian E, Markuerkiaga I, Pradillo JM, Higuchi M, Llop J, Moro MA, Martin A, Lizasoain I. Imaging the role of TLR4 on cell proliferation and inflammation after cerebral ischemia by PET. J Cereb Blood Flow Metabolism. 2016. 36:702-8. FI: 5.081; Nº 41/258. NC. (JCR/2016). 1Q  


  1. Cuartero MI, de la Parra J, García-Culebras A, Ballesteros I, Lizasoain I, Moro MA. The kynurenine pathway in the acute and chronic phases of cerebral ischemia. Curr Pharm Des. 2016. 22:1060-73. FI: 2.611; Nº 117/256 PP (JCR/2016). 2Q. Citations: 1


  1. Orset C, Haelewyn B, Allan S, Ansar S, Campos F, Cho TE, Durand A, El Akmi M, Fatar M, Garcia-Yébenes I, Gauberti M, Grudzenski S, Lizasoain I, Lo EH, Macrez R, Margaill I, Maysami S, Meairs S, Nighoghossian N, Orbe J, Paramo JA, Parienti JJ, Rothwell NJ, Rubio M, Waeber C, Young AR, Touzé E and Vivien D. Efficacy of alteplase in a mouse model of acute ischemic stroke: a retrospective pooled analysis. Stroke. 2016. 47: 1312-1318. FI: 6.032; Nº16/194. CN. (JCR/2016). 1D



  1. Cuartero MI, Ballesteros I, Lizasoain I, Moro MA. Complexity of the cell-cell interactions in the innate immune response after cerebral ischemia. Brain Res. 2015. 1623: 53-62. FI: 2.561; Nº 143/256. NC. (JCR/2015). Citations: 4


  1. Amantea D, Micieli G, Tassorelli C, Cuartero MI, Ballesteros I, Certo M, Moro MA, Lizasoain I, Bagetta G. Rational modulation of the innate immune system for neuroprotection in ischemic stroke. Front Neurosci. 2015. 9: 147. FI: 3.398; Nº 88/256. NC. (JCR/2015). Citations: 35


  1. Moraga A, Pradillo JM, García-Culebras A, Palma-Tortosa S, Ballesteros I, Hernandez-Jimenez M, Moro MA, Lizasoain I. Aging increases microglial proliferation, delays cell migration and decreases cortical neurogenesis after focal cerebral ischemia. J Neuroinflammation. 2015. 12: 87. FI: 4.667; Nº 34/150. I. (JCR/2015). 1Q. Citations: 8


  1. Nieto E, Delgado M, Sobrado M, de Ceballos ML, Alajarín R, García-García L, Kelly J, Lizasoain I, Pozo MA, Alvarez-Builla J. Preliminary research on 1-(4-bromo-2-nitroimidazol-1-yl)-3-[18F]-fluoropropan-2-ol as a novel brain hypoxia PET tracer in a rodent model of stroke. Eur J Med Chem. 2015. 101: 604-15. FI: 3.902; Nº 6/59. (JCR/2015). 1Q



  1. Camós S, Gubern C, Sobrado M, Rodriguez R, Romera VG, Moro MA, Lizasoain I, Serena J, Mallolas J, Castellanos M. Oct-2 transcription factor binding activity and expression up-regulation in rat cerebral ischaemia is associated with a diminution of neuronal damage in vitro. NeuroMol Med. 2014. 16:332-49. FI: 3.678; Nº 78/252 NC (JCR/2014) 2Q. Citations: 1


  1. Ballesteros I, Cuartero MI, Pradillo JM, de la Parra J, Pérez-Ruiz A, Corbí A, Ricote M, Hamilton JA, Sobrado M, Vivancos J, Nombela F, Lizasoain I, Moro MA. Rosiglitazone-induced CD36 upregulation resolves inflammation by PPAR-gamma and 5-LO dependent pathways. J Leukoc Biol. 2014. 95:587-98. FI: 4.289; Nº 13/68 Hematology (JCR/2014) 1Q. Citations: 27         


  1. Gubern C, Camos S, Hurtado O, Rodriguez R, Romera VG, Sobrado M, Moro MA, Lizasoain I, Serena J, Mallolas J, Castellanos M. Characterization of Gcf2/Lrrfip1 in experimental cerebral ischemia and its role as a modulator of Akt, mTOR and β-catenin signaling pathways. 2014. 268:48-65. FI: 3.357; Nº 95/252. NC (JCR/2014) 2Q. Citations: 8


  1. Camós S, Gubern C, Sobrado M, Rodriguez R, Romera VG, Moro MA, Lizasoain I, Serena J, Mallolas J, Castellanos M. The high mobility group I-Y transcription factor is involved in cerebral ischaemia and modulates the expression of angiogenic proteins. 2014. 269:112-30. FI: 3.357; Nº 95/252. NC (JCR/2014) 2Q. Citations: 5


  1. Moraga A, Pradillo JM, Cuartero MI, Hernandez-Jimenez M, Oses M, Moro MA, Lizasoain I. TLR4 modulates cell migration and cortical neurogenesis after focal cerebral ischemia. FASEB J. 2014. 28:4710-8. FI: 5,043; Nº 9/85. Biology (JCR/2014) 1Q. Citations: 14


  1. Cuartero MI, Ballesteros I, de la Parra J, Harkin AL, Abautret-Daly A, Fernández Salguero P, Corbí A, Lizasoain I, Moro MA. An L-kynurenine/aryl hydrocarbon receptor pathway mediates brain damage in experimental stroke. Circulation. 2014. 130:2040-2051. FI: 15.073; Nº 1/60. PVD. (JCR/2014) 1D. Citations: 10


  1. Sreeramkumar V, Adrover JM, Ballesteros I, Cuartero MI, Rossaint J, Bilbao I, Nácher M, Pitaval C, Radovanovic I, Fukui Y, McEver RP, Filippi MD, Lizasoain I, Ruiz-Cabello J, Zarbock A, Moro MA, Hidalgo A. Neutrophils scan for activated platelets to initiate inflammation. Science. 2014. 346:1234-8. FI: 33.611; Nº 2/57. MS. (JCR/2014) 1D. Citations: 107


  1. Ballesteros I, Cuartero MI, Moraga A, de la Parra J, Lizasoain I, Moro MA. Stereological and flow cytometry characterization of leukocyte subpopulations in models of transient or permanent ischemia. J Vis Exp. 2014. 28;(94). FI: 1.325; Nº 16/56. MS. (JCR/2014) 1461 views (May 21, 2015). Citations: 1


  1. Nombela F, Blanco M, Perez de la Ossa N, Caniego JL, Sobrino T, Escudero D, Campos F, Moro MA, Lizasoain I, Dávalos A, Castillo J, Vivancos J. Neuronal excitotoxicity after carotid angioplasty and stent placement procedures. Radiology. 2013. 268: 515-20. FI: 6.214. Nº4/121 Rad (JCR/2013) 1D. Citations: 2


  1. Hernández-Jiménez M*, Hurtado O*, Cuartero MI, Ballesteros I, Moraga A, Pradillo JM, McBurney MW, Lizasoain I, Moro MA. Silent information regulator 1 (Sirt1) protects the brain from ischemia. 2013. 44: 2333-37. FI: 6.018; Nº 11/194 CN (JCR/2013) 1D. Citations: 63


  1. Hurtado O*, Hernández-Jiménez M*, Zarruk JG, Cuartero MI, Ballesteros MI, Camarero G, Moraga A, Pradillo JM, Moro MA, Lizasoain I. Citicoline (CDP-choline) increases Sirtuin1 expression concomitant to neuroprotection in experimental stroke. J Neurochem. 2013. 126: 819-26. FI: 4.244; Nº 63/251 NC (JCR/2013) 2Q. Citations: 11


  1. Godino MC*, Romera VG*, Sánchez-Tomero JA, Pacheco J, Canals S, Lerma J, Vivancos J, Moro MA, Torres M, Lizasoain I*, Sánchez-Prieto J*. Amelioration of ischemic brain damage by peritoneal dialysis. J Clin Invest. 123: 4359-63. FI: 13.765; Nº 5/122 Medicine (JCR/2013) 1D. Citations: 16


  1. Fernandez-Lopez D, Moro MA, Lizasoain I, Martinez-Orgado JA. Cannabinoids: well-suited candidates for the treatment of perinatal brain injury. Brain Sci. 2013. 3:1043-59


  1. Gubern C, Camos S, Romera VG, Rodriguez R, Ballesteros I, Lizasoain I, Moro MA, Serena J, Mallolas J, Castellanos M. miRNA expression is modulated over time after focal ischaemia: Up-regulation of miR-347 promotes neuronal apoptosis. FEBS J. 280:6233-46. FI: 3.986; Nº85/291 BBM (JCR/2013) 2Q. Citations: 18


Ignacio Lizasoain Sánchez -  ignacio.lizasoain@med.ucm.es

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