Modeling Human Diseases in C. elegans group

Research lines


Its short life cycle, its hermaphroditism, and its syncytial germline are advantages to use C. elegans as model to develop CRISPR technologies. We investigate most efficient and versatile methodologies to edit genetic locus in animals.


Mechanisms of RNA processing are highly conserved from yeast to humans and are frequently altered in human diseases. We use the powerful C. elegans genetics to study RNA-related processes that are impaired in diverse diseases as cancer or retinitis pigmentosa.


Tumors can become resistant to chemotherapeutical agents, limiting the effectiveness of the treatment. We take advantage of the toxicity of cisplatin on C. elegans to study the molecular and celular mechanisms that confer both resistance and sensitivity to chemotherapy.

Recent Publications

A Living Organism in your CRISPR Toolbox: Caenorhabditis elegans Is a Rapid and Efficient Model for Developing CRISPR-Cas Technologies
Vicencio J, Cerón J*
CRISPR Journal, 2021. PMID: 33538637 DOI: 10.1089/crispr.2020.0103

Ancestral function of Inhibitors-of-kappaB regulates Caenorhabditis elegans development
David Brena, Joan Bertran, Montserrat Porta-de-la-Riva, Yolanda Guillén, Eric CornesDmytro KukhtarLluís Campos-Vicens, Lierni Fernández, Irene Pecharroman, Albert García-López, Abul B. M. M. K. Islam, Laura Marruecos, Anna Bigas*, Julián Cerón* & Lluís Espinosa*
Scientific Reports
, 2020, volume 10, Article number: 16153

Mimicking of splicing-related retinitis pigmentosa mutations in C. elegans allow drug screens and identification of disease modifiers.
Kukhtar D*, Rubio-Peña K*, Serrat X, Cerón J.*
Human Molecular Genetics, 2020 Jan 10. pii: ddz315.

CRISPR editing of sftb-1/SF3B1 in C. elegans allows the identification of synthetic interactions with cancer-related mutations and the chemical inhibition of splicing.
Xènia Serrat, Dmytro Kukhtar, Eric Cornes, Anna Esteve-Codina, Helena Benlloch, Germano Cecere, Julián Cerón*
PLoS Genetics, October 2019 ;

Efficient Generation of Endogenous Fluorescent Reporters by Nested CRISPR in Caenorhabditis elegans.
Vicencio J, Martínez-Fernández C, Serrat X, Cerón J.*
Genetics, 2019 Apr;211(4):1143-1154.

Genetic and cellular sensitivity of Caenorhabditis elegans to the chemotherapeutic agent cisplatin.
García-Rodríguez FJ, Martínez-Fernández C, Brena D, Kukhtar D, Serrat X, Nadal E, Boxem M, Honnen S, Miranda-Vizuete A, Villanueva A, Cerón J.*
Disease Models and Mechanisms, 2018 Jun 21;11(6).


From left to right: Julián, Mariona, Nuria, Jeremy, Miguel, Dmytro, Carmen, David

Find us

Bellvitge Institute for Biomedical Research (IDIBELL).
Hospital Duran i Reynals.
Laboratorio de Genética Molecular, planta 3.
Gran via s/n, Km 2.7, l’Hospitalet 08907, Barcelona, Spain.



phone:  +34 93 260 7287