Professor of Research at the Spanish Research Council (CSIC).
B.Sc. in Chemistry at the University of Barcelona (1965). Ph.D. in Biochemistry, University of Barcelona (1969). Maximum grades: "Premio Extraordinario" for B.Sc. (1965) and for Ph.D. (1969).
- Oct. 1969-Dec. 1973: With Prof. Robert C. Warner, Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, University of California at Irvine, California (USA). In vitro transcription.
- Jan. 1974-July 1976: With Prof. Charles Weissmann, Institut für Molekularbiologie I, Universitat Zürich, 8093 Zürich (Switzerland). Genetics of phage Qβ.
Visits to other laboratories and sabbaticals
- 1980-81: BIOGEN S.A. (Switzerland). Molecular cloning and gene expression.
- August 1983: National Institute for Medical Research, Mil Hill, London (UK), with Dr. J. Skehel. Dideoxy sequencing of influenza virus genes.
- August 1988 - August 1989: Sabbatical year at the Univ. of California, San Diego (USA), with Dr. J. Holland. RNA virus heterogeneity.
- Jan. 1991 - April 1991: Additional visit at UCSD, with Dr. J. Holland. RNA virus heterogeneity.
- Oct. 1999 - Nov. 1999: Scripps Research Institute, with Drs. M.B.A. Oldstone and J.C. de la Torre. Genetics of lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus.
- Editorial board of: Microbiologia S.E.M. (since 1985) / Virus Research (since 1987) / J. Gen. Virology (1988-1993; and since 2003) / J. Virol. (since 1995) / Viral Immunology (1994-1999) / Archives in Virology (since 1997) / Virologie (France) (since 1997) / AIDS Reviews (1999-2003) / Virology (since 2002) / Associate editor, PLoS Pathogens (since 2008).
- Editor of J.Gen.Virol. (1998-2002).
- Spanish representative in the Standing Technical Committee of FAO on FMD research (1986-1992).
- Member of the Advisory Committee of the Division of Virology of the International Union of Microbiological Societies (IUMS) (1999-2005).
- Founder member and scientific board member of Institute Para Limes, The Netherlands (since 2006).
- President of the Spanish Society for Virology (since 2007).
- Associate Editor, PLoS Pathogens, since 2008.
At the Univ. Calif. Irvine (1971-73) and Univ. Autónoma de Madrid (Spain) 1978-1992 / Director of "Master in Biotechnology" given at the CBMSO (1992-1993), and coordinator (1994-1995). Professor at the "Cours de Virologie Fondamentale", Institut Pasteur, Paris, France (since 1993). Professor at the course "Genetics and Evolution of Viruses" (since 2003), Univ. of Helsinki, Finland. Organizer: Dr. A. Plyusnin.
Director or co-director of 22 Doctoral Theses.
363 papers in international journals and books. H index=64 (Jan. 2011). Author or editor of 5 books.
Main scientific achievements
Demonstration of high mutation rates and quasispecies dynamics of RNA viruses.
Establishment of cell lines persistently infected with foot-and-mouth disease virus.
Concept of viral fitness and its quantification.
Implications of quasispecies for virus adaptability and for viral disease control.
Development of lethal mutagenesis as a new antiviral strategy.
Main current scientific interests
Molecular basis of virus extinction by enhanced mutagenesis.
Design of new antiviral protocols.
Antiviral mechanisms of nucleoside analogues.
HCV population dynamics and response to treatments with directly acting antiviral agents.
Main scientific distinctions
- Member of the EMBO (since 1991).
- Honorary Member of the European Society for Veterinary Virology (since 1997).
- Member of the European Academy (since 1998).
- Doctor Honoris causa from the Université de Liège, Belgium (1999).
- Doctor Honoris causa from the University of Bern, Switzerland (2004).
- Premio Cultura Viva (2010).
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