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Professor Joaquín Castilla

Director of the Prion laboratory at the CIC bioGUNE

President of the Spanish Foundation for Prion Diseases


Professor Joaquín Castilla is a researcher with extensive experience in prions, starting his journey in 1998 at CISA-INIA. He pursued his research career as a scientist at the Serono Research Institute. Academically, he served as an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas Medical Branch (2003-2006), and later at Scripps-Florida (2006-2009), where he led an independent research group.

Dr. Castilla’s main focus lies in the in vitro and in vivo propagation of prions. His current research efforts revolve around investigating strain and species barrier phenomena in a cell-free system. His goal is to decipher the molecular mechanisms underlying the propagation of prions and to explore innovative therapeutic approaches to fight prion diseases.

Joaquín Castilla is currently the director of the prion laboratory at the CIC bioGUNE ( Beyond his scientific pursuits, he passionately dedicates a significant part of his time to support families affected by prion diseases, approaching the issue from various perspectives. He serves as the President of the Spanish Foundation for Prion Diseases (, aiming to make a positive impact in the lives of those affected by these challenging conditions.