DNA Replication Group

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Staff Scientists

Post-Doctoral Fellows

  • Estrella Guarino
  • Sergio Muñoz

Graduate Students

  • Elena Blanco
  • Patricia Ubieto

Our laboratory studies the process of genome duplication, which is responsible for many of the mutations and genomic alterations found in human cancer. While the protein machinery responsible for DNA replication is normally very accurate, it becomes error-prone when the DNA displays chemical alterations caused by endogenous reactive species, external drugs or ionising radiation. We are interested in the phenomenon of replicative tolerance, i.e. the mechanisms that allow the progression of the ‘replisome’ proteins through damaged DNA, a step that normally precedes the activation of specific DNA repair pathways. In 2019, we focused on two major areas: (1) studying the efficiency of replication origins in response to replication stress in pluripotent cells, in the context of their three-dimensional positions in the nuclear chromatin; and (2) evaluating the function of DNA primase PrimPol in the tolerance of cytotoxic DNA lesions in normal and cancer cells with different genetic backgrounds.