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Mechanisms of Disease
Structural Characterization of Macromolecular Assemblies
Group Leader
+34 93 40 37189

ICREA Research Professor


Research information

Research interests

Our research interests are focused on deciphering the mechanisms that correlate cell signaling with gene expression applying structural biology (NMR, X-ray and SAXS). With our structures, we aim to describe how biological processes occur, how they are regulated and their implications in human diseases.

A large part of our work has been devoted to clarifying the role of SMAD transcription factors in TGFβ signaling. SMAD proteins are key components of the TGFβ pathway, one of the four conserved pathways in metazoans. In humans, these proteins are involved in a wide range of cellular responses and are mutated in many oncologic, autoimmune and neurological disorders. Our long-term goal is to explain the complete picture of how full-length SMAD proteins transmit TGFβ signaling and regulate gene expression and cell fate in health and disease.

More recently and in collaboration with medical doctors and researchers of the Sant Pau hospital in Barcelona, we are currently studying the probability of relapse and metastasis of gynecological Cancer patients. We contribute with the analysis of patients’ data from biopsies using artificial intelligence.

Research lines

How Smad proteins and bound cofactors assemble and read DNA

Molecular and structural analysis of ribonucleoprotein complexes

Structural and functional characterization of Somatostatin and Cortistatin analogues

Signatures for the prediction of recurrence and metastasis in Endometrial Cancers.

Computer tools for structural biology


Selected publications

Rol Á; Todorovski T; Martin-Malpartida P; Escolà A; Gonzalez-Rey E; Aragón E; Verdaguer X; Vallès-Miret M; Farrera-Sinfreu J; Puig E; Fernández-Carneado J; Ponsati B; Delgado M; Riera A; Macias MJ
Nature Communications
(1 )
1869 -
Aragón E; Wang Q; Zou Y; Morgani SM; Ruiz L; Kaczmarska Z; Su J; Torner C; Tian L; Hu J; Shu W; Agrawal S; Gomes T; Márquez JA; Hadjantonakis AK; Macias MJ; Massagué J
Genes & Development
(21-22 )
1506 -
Martin-Malpartida P; Batet M; Kaczmarska Z; Freier R; Gomes T; Aragón E; Zou Y; Wang Q; Xi Q; Ruiz L; Vea A; Márquez J; Massagué J; Macias M
Nature Communications
(1 )
2070 -
Macias M; Martin-Malpartida P; Massagué J
Trends In Biochemical Sciences
(6 )
296 -
Zhou R; Maisuradze G; Suñol D; Todorovski T; Macias M; Xiao Y; Scheraga H; Czaplewski C; Liwo A
Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences Of The United States Of America
(51 )
18243 -
Aragón E; Goerner N; Zaromytidou A; Xi Q; Escobedo A; Massagué J; Macias M
Genes & Development
(12 )
1275 -


"Identificación de los sitios de interacción de proteínas Smad con cofactores mediante el uso de biología estructural de alta resolución" (DiSCo-HR), cofinanciado por el Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades- Agencia Estatal de Investigación y por el Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional (FEDER) de la Unión Europea, una manera de hacer Europa. Referencia: BFU2017-82675-P.

Ministerio de ciencia, innovación y universidades
Agencia estatal de investigación
European union

"Stem cell differentiation and TGFB-SMAD signaling: Structures of Smad2 and FoxH1 bound to the goosecoid promoter. Analysis of the variants and tumor mutations in these interactions" (MaSSMADs), cofinanciado por el Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad y por el Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional (FEDER) de la Unión Europea. Referencia: BFU2014-53787-P (MINECO/FEDER, UE).

Gobierno de españa
European union

“Indicadors genòmics per a la predicció de la recurrència i la metàstasi en cáncer endometrial”, con el apoyo de la Fundació La Marató de TV3 (201911-30-31).

Fundació La Marató




Suport obtingut de l’FSE a través de les Ajuts per a la contractació de personal investigador novell (FI). El Fons Social Europeu dona suport a la creació d’ocupació, ajuda a las persones a aconseguir millors llocs de treball i garanteix oportunitats laborals més justes per a la ciutadania de la Unió Europea.


Group members

Postdoctoral Fellow
PhD Student
Research Assistant
Research Assistant
Research Assistant
Lab Technician
Visiting Scientist

Group News

13 Jul 2015
Media mentions
28 Mar 2012