I am fascinated by the specificity of connectivity patterns in the brain. The study of how genomes encode information necessary for constructing such complex wiring networks has yielded key molecular principles underlying the assembly of the brain. An increasing number of genetic variants have been associated with increased risk to suffer from psychiatric disorders, however our mechanistic understanding of their impact on brain development is still limited.
PhD in Developmental Neurobiology (2016 – present)
Since 2016, I am a PhD student in Developmental Neurobiology at King’s College London, co-advised by Prof. Beatriz Rico and Prof. Oscar Marín at the Centre for Developmental Neurobiology. I am interested in understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms that instruct the formation and function of cortical circuits, and how genetic variations associated with psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia might alter their normal developmental trajectories. My research is focused on the synaptic assembly of interneurons and pyramidal cells, the two major neuronal components of the cerebral cortex. To address these questions, my work in the lab involves molecular and cellular biology, mouse genetics, CRISPR-based gene editing, histology, and confocal microscopy. Additionally, I have gained experience on bioinformatic analysis including transcriptomics, and slice electrophysiological recordings.
MRes in Developmental Neurobiology (2015-16)
During my MRes at the Centre for Developmental Neurobiology (King’s College London), I applied a variety of techniques to understand cortical circuit connectivity during development and disease. In my first rotation in Prof. Juan Burrone‘s lab, I used electron microscopy-based 3D reconstructions to explore the spatial distribution patterns of synapses along dendrites of pyramidal cells. In my second rotation in Prof. Oscar Marín‘s lab, I combined bioinformatic analysis and histological approaches to investigate genetic mechanisms underlying interneuron dysfunction in neurodevelopmental disorders. In my third rotation in Prof. Beatriz Rico‘s lab, I took advantage of optogenetic strategies and electrophysiological recordings coupled with immunohistochemistry to study the differential inhibitory control that interneuron subtypes exert on pyramidal cells.
MSc in Neurosciences (2014-15)
During my Master’s degree at the University of Barcelona, I studied the architecture of synaptic connectivity in the cerebral cortex with nanometer resolution using scanning electron microscopy, working in the laboratory of Prof. Eduardo Soriano (Institute of Neurosciences, and Department of Cell Biology, Physiology and Immunology, University of Barcelona). My research focused on ultrastructural analysis of dendritic spines and presynaptic boutons in hippocampal newborn neurons (Bosch et al., 2016, Cereb Cortex).
BSc in Biological Sciences (2010-14)
As an undergraduate student at the University of Alicante, I had a passionate curiosity about how the study of molecules and cells might provide valuable insights to our understanding of disease processes, which led me to several internships: exploring the regulatory effects of mesenchymal stem cells on the immune response of blood cells, supervised by Prof. José Miguel Sempere (Department of Biotecnology, University of Alicante, Spain); performing molecular clinical assays for immunological disorders, under the supervision of Dr. Mª Luz de la Sen Fernández (Immunology Unit, Alicante General Hospital, Spain); and studying cellular chemotaxis and inflammatory responses, supervised by Dr. Mario Mellado the (National Center of Biotechnology CNB-CSIC, Madrid, Spain).