El nuevo Equipo de Dirección del CBGP (UPM-INIA) fue nombrado en Febrero de 2020 para un periodo de 4 años en el que supervisará y gestionará las actividades de centro.
Antonio Molina, the current Director, was re-elected by the CBGP (UPM-INIA) council and will continue to serve as Director of the CBGP (UPM-INIA) for the next 4 years (until February 10th, 2024). His leadership and previous experience in managing CBGP (UPM-INIA) over the past 4 years will contribute to the further expansion and growth of the center.
The newly appointed Directory Board is composed of 4 prominent researchers from UPM and INIA:
- Antonio Molina as Director
- Carlos del Pozo as Deputy Director of Scientific Programs
- Isabel Allona as Deputy Director of Scientific Infrastructure
- Elena Caro as Executive Director
CBGP (UPM-INIA) community would like to congratulate all the new Directory Board members and wishes lots of success in their efforts. The current Directory Board would like to thank Luis M. Rubio and María Angeles Ayllón Talavera who served the last 4 years as members of the Board for their commitment and contribution to the development of the center, that received the seal of excellence Severo Ochoa on July 2017.
About Antonio Molina
Antonio Molina is Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the Department of Biotechnology and Plant Biology of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM). Since February 2016 he is Director of the Centro de Biotecnología y Genómica de Plantas (CBGP, UPM-INIA), that has been awarded as Center of Excellence “Severo Ochoa” by the Spanish Research Agency. Dr. Molina completed his doctoral thesis at the UPM under the supervision of Dr. Francisco García-Olmedo and did a postdoctoral at the Agricultural Biotechnology Research Unit (ABRU) Syngenta (NC, USA) under the supervision of Dr. John Ryals.
The research activity of the group of Dr. Molina at the CBGP focuses on the study of Plant Immunity and its applications to crop protection (http://www.cbgp.upm.es/plant_innate.php). Dr. Molina has published more than 70 scientific articles being a recognised expert in the area of plant innate immunity, resistance to necrothrophíc fungi and the function of plant cell wall in immunity. He has developed an intense activity of innovation and technology transfer in collaboration with national and international companies, that resulted in several Patents exclusively licensed to companies and in the commercialization of agrobiological products. Dr. Molina is the co-founder of PlantResponse Biotech SL (PRB; www.plantresponse.com), a UPM spin-off enterprise that has raised more than 12 millions of euros of Venture Capitals, and has been recognised by the Spanish Association of Biotech Enterprises (ASEBIO) as one the Spanish success biotech companies of the last 10 years. Dr. Molin is currently Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of PRB. Dr. Molina is also co-founder of FAIR Data Systems, a start-up company that has been launched on November 2019. For more information.
About Carlos del Pozo
He studied Biology at the Complutense University of Madrid (1986-91). In 1996 he obtained the PhD by the same University, working on plant responses to phosphate starvation, Thesis supervised by Javier Paz-Ares and Alicia de la Peña. He carried out a postdoctoral stay in the laboratory of Mark Estelle (Indiana University at Bloomington, USA) working on auxin responses and protein ubiquitylation. He also did a second postdoctoral stay, as Ramon y Cajal researcher, at the CBM-CSIC, working on plant cell division in Crisanto Gutierrez´s lab. In 2003, he joined the INIA as permanent staff (research associate), initiating his current research line: “Root development and responses to nutrient deficiencies”. Recently, in 2017, he has been promoted to Research Professor in the INIA and has been Deputy Director of Scientific Programs in the CBGP from 2016 until now. For more information.
About Isabel Allona
Dr. Isabel Allona is a Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Professor in the Biotechnology-Plant Biology Department at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM), teaching in the Degree of Biotechnology, at the Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingeniería Agronómica, Alimentaria y de Biosistemas (ETSIAAB). After her graduation as Forestry Engineer she received in 1991 her PhD in Forest Biotechnology at the UPM, directed directed by Dr. Aragoncillo. Then, she worked as Postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Paz-Ares at the CIB-CSIC and as Assistant Professor at the UPM from 1992 to 1995. From 1995 to 1998, she was granted as Fulbright Postdoctoral fellowship at the Forest Biotechnology Group (NCSU, USA) with Dr. Sederoff (who has been the recipient of the Wallenberg Prize, Oct 2017). In 1999 she obtained an Associate Professor position at the UPM. Since 2006, Dr. Allona is Principal Investigator of the Group “Seasonal and Circadian Control of Growth-Dormancy Cycles in Trees” at the CBGP. In her laboratory, they study the molecular basis of trees annual growth-dormancy cycles regulation, using poplar as model specie. Briefly, the laboratory is focused on understanding how the environmental signals influence the molecular networks regulating specific phases of dormancy, leading to the identification of new targets to biotechnologically modulate vegetative growth and optimize the adaptation of the already improved trees to different geographical regions and/or to the climate change in their own area. Dr. Allona belong to the Scientific Committee of the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC), to the UPM Ethics Commission and is the responsible of the UPM research group “Plant Biotechnology”. For more information.
About Elena Caro
Elena Caro is an expert in plant gene expression. She has dedicated her career to the study of gene regulation in model plants, with specific interest on epigenetics, leading to publications in first class journals. She did her PhD in Crisanto Gutierrez's lab at the Centro de Biología Molecular "Severo Ochoa" and after a postdoc in the University of California-Los Angeles with Steve Jacobsen, she was recruited by the UPM through the Ramon y Cajal Program. Currently, she is a Tenured Professor focused on the study of transgene expression control in model plant systems and staple crops.
One of her main interests is understanding the mechanisms that mediate transgenes silencing and the signals leading to their recognition. The results of her work so far have explored the effect of terminator and genetic insulators usage in transgene heritable silencing. She is also interested in exploring gene synthetic design parameters to optimize transgene expression and is involved in an applied biotechnology project led by Prof. Luis Rubio (UPM) to investigate the transfer of bacterial nitrogen fixation genes to plants. This research program, for which the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded funding of $5 million between 2016 and 2020, aims to obtain cereals with minimum requirements of nitrogen fertilizers that will produce higher and more consistent returns on their crops. For more information.