Epithelial Carcinogenesis Group
Basic/translational research
National Cancer Research Center (CNIO),
·Madrid ·

The work of our group focuses on three objectives:

1. To identify the mechanisms that contribute in early stages to the development of pancreatic cancer. To this end, we use genetic mouse models that recapitulate human disease and focus on analyzing the role of cell differentiation processes and control of inflammation.

2. To characterize the transcriptional regulatory programs involved in the phenotypic heterogeneity of pancreatic tumors, with a special emphasis on the control of the “classical” and “basal” programs. To this end, we used a combination of approaches including genetic mouse models of pancreatic cancer, human tumor organoids and cell lines.

3. To identify new prognostic and/or predictive markers that may be useful for the management of patients with pancreatic cancer. These studies use samples of patients with pancreatic cancer from various collaborative studies, mainly with Núria Malats’ group but also with various international groups.

Main publications in pancreatic cancer:

  1. Cobo I, Martinelli P, Flández M, Bakiri L, Zhang M, Carrillo-de Santa Pau E, Jia J, Sánchez-Arévalo Lobo V, Megías D, Felipe I, del Pozo N, Millán I, Thommesen L, Bruland T, Olson S, Smith J, Schoonjans K, Bamlet WR, Petersen GM, Malats N, Amundadottir LT, Wagner EF, Real FX. Transcriptional regulation by NR5A2 links cell differentiation and inflammation in the pancreas. Nature 2018; 554:533-537.
  2. Martinelli P,* Carrillo-de-Santa-Pau E, Cox T, Sainz B, Dusetti N, Greenhalf W, Rinaldi L, Costello E, Ghaneh P, Malats N, Büchler M, Pajic M, Biankin AV, Iovanna J, Neoptolemos J, Real FX. GATA6 regulates EMT and tumor dissemination, and is a marker of response to adjuvant chemotherapy in pancreatic cancer. Gut 2017; 66:1665-1676.
  3. Richart L, Carrillo-de Santa Pau E, Rio-Machin A, Pérez de Andrés M, Cigudosa JC, Sanchez-Arevalo Lobo VJ*, Real FX*. Bptf is required for c-Myc transcriptional activity and in vivo tumorigenesis. Nat Comm 2016; 7:10153.
Francisco X Real Arribas
Chengsi Wu

Principal Investigator

Group members

  • Francisco X Real Arribas
  • Miriam Marqués
  • Irene Felipe
  • Jaime Martínez
  • Mikhail Chesnokov
  • Cristina Bodas
  • Auba Gayá
  • Chengsi Wu
  • Santiago Barber

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