New neurons, new hopes.


ERC Consolidator Grant 2020, ERC-CoG-2020-101001916. “HumAN: Interrogating human adult hippocampal neurogenesis”.

Understanding the functional integration of new neurons to promote human brain plasticity.

The addition of new neurons to the hippocampus is a unique mechanism of plasticity that occurs in the adult mammalian brain. Our group has pioneered state-of-the-art tissue preservation and processing methodologies, thereby demonstrating the persistence of adult neurogenesis up to, at least, the tenth decade of human life. We aim at gaining mechanistic insight into the regulation of human adult hippocampal neurogenesis during physiological and pathological aging. For that purpose, we will precisely reconstruct the entire life of new neurons generated in the adult human hippocampus and dissect, at the single-cell level, the pathological mechanisms that converge into the functional failure of adult hippocampal neurogenesis in neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases.


Spanish Ministry of Science & Innovation, PID2020-113007RB-I00. The Alzheimer's Association, AARG-17-528125-RAPID, and AARG-17-528125.

Basic and translational research to approach the cure of diseases.

Adult hippocampal neurogenesis is impaired in animal models of numerous brain diseases. Our group intends to develop novel therapeutic strategies, based on the preservation of adult neurogenesis, to treat these disorders. For that purpose, we use molecular biology techniques to develop new viral tools. These techniques will help disentangling the molecular mechanisms that regulate the synaptic integration, and morphological and functional maturation of newborn dentate granule cells under both physiological and pathological conditions in mice. We have also other lines of research open, which intend to unravel the putatively unique characteristics of adult neurogenesis in other mammalian species.


Centro de Biología Molecular Severo Ochoa (CBMSO) Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Campus de Cantoblanco)
C/ Nicolás Cabrera 1 - 28049 Madrid (Spain)

María Llorens-Martín (PI)
+34 911964632