Treating aging will be beneficial for the individual, for the society, and for the sustainability of the planet.
— Manuel Serrano, Ph.D 

Manuel Serrano, Ph.D. 

ICREA Research Professor at Institut de Recerca Biomèdica (IRB Barcelona)

Manuel Serrano obtained his PhD in 1991 for his research at the Centre for Molecular Biology (CSIC/UAM, Madrid)) under the supervision of M. Salas and J.M. Hermoso. From 1992 to 1996 he worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow in the laboratory of D. Beach at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York, USA. In 1997, he returned to Spain to start his own research group at the Spanish National Biotechnology Centre (CSIC, Madrid). He moved to the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (Madrid) in 2003 to lead the Tumour Suppression Group, where he also served as Director of the Molecular Oncology Programme (2012-2017). In May 2017, he relocated to the Institute for Biomedical Research-IRB Barcelona to establish the Cellular Plasticity and Disease Group within the Molecular Medicine Research Programme. He has accomplished important scientific contributions to the understanding of Ageing from different perspectives: Cancer & Ageing, Metabolism & Ageing, Regeneration & Ageing.


The unifying concept that has guided our research is that tumour suppressors protect the organism from many types of damage and regardless of the pathology that damage may cause. Protection from cancer is just one of the outcomes of tumour suppressors, others being protection from chronic diseases, nutritional overload, tissue injuries, or aging. Tumour suppressors often trigger a cellular state known as cellular senescence, and we have pioneer the concept that cellular senescence is critical to signal tissue damage and to elicit tissue regeneration. The key emerging paradigm is that tumour suppressors, by triggering cellular senescence, recruit inflammatory cells and create a tissue microenvironment that favours tissue repair and regeneration. Damage → Tumour Suppressors → Cellular Senescence → (secreted factors) → Cellular Plasticity → Tissue Repair

aging critical publications

  • Serrano M, Hannon G, Beach D (1993). A new regulatory motif in cell-cycle control causing specific inhibition of cyclin D/CDK4. Nature, 336, 704-707.

  • Matheu A, Maraver A, Klatt P, Flores I, García-Cao I, Borras C, Flores JM, Viña J, Blasco MA, Serrano M (2007). Delayed aging through damage protection by the Arf/p53 pathway. Nature 448, 375-379. 

  • Abad M, Mosteiro L, Pantoja C, Cañamero M, Rayón T, Ors I, Graña O, Megías D, Domínguez O, Martínez D, Manzanares M, Ortega S, Serrano M (2013). Reprogramming in vivo produces teratomas and iPS cells with totipotency features. Nature 502, 340-345 (2013).

  • Muñoz-Espín D, Cañamero M, Maraver A, Gómez-López G, Contreras J, Murillo-Cuesta S. Rodríguez-Baeza A, Varela-Nieto I, Ruberte J, Collado M, Serrano M (2013). Programmed cellular senescence during embryonic development. Cell 21, 1104-1118 (2013).

  • Mosteiro L, Pantoja C, Alcazar N, Marión RM, Chondronasiou D, Rovira M, Fernández-Marcos PJ, Muñoz-Martin M, Blanco-Aparicio C, Pastor J, Gómez-López G, de Martino A, Blasco MA, Abad M and Serrano M (2016). Tissue damage and senescence provide critical signals for cellular reprogramming in vivo. Science 354, 6315. pii: aaf4445.