Molecular Targets of Cancer
Basic/translational research
Institute of Biomedical Research of Barcelona (IIBB-CSIC) / Associated Unit IMIM-Hospital del Mar
·Barcelona ·

The group led by Dr. Pilar Navarro, “Molecular Targets of Cancer” (IIBB-CSIC/ Associated Unit IMIM-Hospital del Mar) has been exploring the molecular mechanisms of pancreatic cancer for more than 20 years with the aim of identifying new targets to improve early diagnosis and treatment of this tumor. For this purpose, we use cell and molecular biology techniques, in vitro functional assays and preclinical animal models that recapitulate the human pancreatic tumor and its microenvironment.

Our most recent studies focus on Galectin-1 as a biomarker and new therapeutic immune checkpoint (Martinez-Bosch N et al. Oncotarget 2018; Martinez-Bosch N et al. Cancer Res. 2014; Orozco CA et al. PNAS 2018; Navarro P et al. Clin Cancer Res. 2020), sAXL as an early biomarker of pancreatic cancer and differential diagnosis of chronic pancreatitis (Martínez-Bosch N et al. eBioMed 2022) and the study of translational control as a new mechanism of gene reprogramming in this cancer (Ortiz-Zapater E et al. Nat Med. 2012; Villanueva E et al. Nat Comm. 2017; Jungfleisch J et al. Genome Res. 2017)

Main publications in pancreatic cancer:

  1. Martínez-Bosch N, Cristóbal H, Iglesias M, Gironella M, Barranco L, Visa L, Calafato D, Jiménez-Parrado S, Earl J, Carrato A, Manero-Rupérez N, Moreno M, Morales A, Guerra C, Navarro P, García de Frutos P. Soluble AXL is a novel blood marker for early detection of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma and differential diagnosis from chronic pancreatitis. EBioMedicine 2022 Jan;75:103797. doi: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2021.103797. 
  2. Orozco CA, Martinez-Bosch N, Guerrero PE, Vinaixa J, Dalotto-Moreno T, Iglesias M, Moreno M, Djurec M, Poirier F, Gabius HJ, Fernandez-Zapico ME, Hwang RF, Guerra C, Rabinovich GA, Navarro P. Targeting galectin-1 inhibits pancreatic cancer progression by modulating tumor-stroma crosstalk. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2018 Apr 17;115(16):E3769-E3778. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1722434115. 
  3. Ortiz-Zapater E, Pineda D, Martínez-Bosch N, Fernández-Miranda G, Iglesias M, Alameda F, Moreno M, Eliscovich C, Eyras E, Real FX, Méndez R, Navarro P. Key contribution of CPEB4-mediated translational control to cancer progression. Nat Med. 2011 Dec 4;18(1):83-90. doi: 10.1038/nm.2540.
Pilar Navarro Medrano
Neus Martinez Bosch

Principal Investigator

Group members

  • Pilar Navarro Medrano
  • Neus Martinez Bosch
  • Luis Barranco Priego
  • Laura Visa
  • Mar Iglesias
  • Inés Molejón
  • Nuria Vázquez Bellón

Other groups