Blasco, Maria A.


Maria A. Blasco

Director of the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas
Head of the Telomeres and Telomerase Group – CNIO

Maria A. Blasco obtained her PhD in 1993 at the Centro de Biología Molecular “Severo Ochoa” under the supervision of M. Salas. That same year, Blasco joined the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York (USA) as a Postdoctoral Fellow under the leadership of C. W. Greider. In 1997 she returned to Spain to start her own research Group at the Centro Nacional de Biotecnología in Madrid. She joined the CNIO in 2003 as Director of the Molecular Oncology Programme and Leader of the Telomeres and Telomerase Group. In 2005 she was also appointed Vice-Director of Basic Research. Since June 2011, she is the CNIO Director.

Blasco has received the following awards, among others: Josef Steiner Cancer Research, Rey Jaime I, “Carmen and Severo Ochoa” Award in Molecular Biology, Swiss Bridge Award for Research in Cancer, Körber European Science Award, Fundación Lilly Preclinical Research Award, Prize “Alberto Sols” for Excellence in Research, as well as the Santiago Ramón y Cajal Research Award in Biology in 2010. Blasco has also been awarded the EMBO Gold Medal and has served on its Council since 2008. In 2014 received a Doctorate Honoris Causa from the Universidad Carlos III of Madrid, Spain. In January of 2017 received a Doctorate Honoris Causa from the Universidad de Alicante and on October of the same year she received the XIII Health Science Award of the Fundación Caja Rural de Granada (Spain) as well as the Scientific Merit Award of the Generalitat Valenciana (Spain).

With more than 245 scientific publications, her research has focussed in demonstrating the importance of telomeres and telomerase in cancer as well as age-related diseases.
Summary of top journals: Cell (8 papers), Nature (4 papers), Science (3 papers), Nature Genetics (6 papers), Nature Cell Biology (5 papers), Nature Medicine (1 paper), Nature Reviews Genetics (2 papers), Nature Reviews Cancer (2 papers), Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology (1 paper), Nature Structural Molecular Biology (3 papers), Nature Biotechnology (1 paper), Nature Communications (12 papers), Nature Chemical Biology (1 paper), Cell Stem Cell (2 papers), Genes & Development (3 papers), Blood (5 papers), EMBO Journal (17 papers), Journal of the American College of Cardiology (1 paper).