Professional Education

  • Licenciatura, Universidad De Barcelona (2010)
  • Master of Science, Universidad De Barcelona (2011)
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Universidad De Barcelona (2016)

Stanford Advisors


All Publications

  • ATM meets ERK5. Aging Angulo-Ibáñez, M., Rovira-Clavé, X., Espel, E. 2017; 9 (2): 299–300

    View details for DOI 10.18632/aging.101189

    View details for PubMedID 28244877

  • Absence of ERK5/MAPK7 delays tumorigenesis in Atm-/- mice. Oncotarget Granados-Jaén, A., Angulo-Ibáñez, M., Rovira-Clavé, X., Gamez, C. P., Soriano, F. X., Reina, M., Espel, E. 2016


    Ataxia-telangiectasia mutated (ATM) is a cell cycle checkpoint kinase that upon activation by DNA damage leads to cell cycle arrest and DNA repair or apoptosis. The absence of Atm or the occurrence of loss-of-function mutations in Atm predisposes to tumorigenesis. MAPK7 has been implicated in numerous types of cancer with pro-survival and pro-growth roles in tumor cells, but its functional relation with tumor suppressors is not clear. In this study, we show that absence of MAPK7 delays death due to spontaneous tumor development in Atm-/- mice. Compared with Atm-/- thymocytes, Mapk7-/-Atm-/- thymocytes exhibited an improved response to DNA damage (increased phosphorylation of H2AX) and a restored apoptotic response after treatment of mice with ionizing radiation. These findings define an antagonistic function of ATM and MAPK7 in the thymocyte response to DNA damage, and suggest that the lack of MAPK7 inhibits thymic lymphoma growth in Atm-/- mice by partially restoring the DNA damage response in thymocytes.

    View details for DOI 10.18632/oncotarget.12908

    View details for PubMedID 27793024

  • Dual role of ERK5 in the regulation of T cell receptor expression at the T cell surface JOURNAL OF LEUKOCYTE BIOLOGY Rovira-Clave, X., Angulo-Ibanez, M., Tournier, C., Reina, M., Espel, E. 2016; 99 (1): 143-152


    Regulation of the levels of the TCR/CD3 complex at the cell surface is critical to proper T cell development and mature T cell activation. We provide evidence that the MAPK ERK5 regulates the surface expression of the TCR/CD3 complex by controlling the degradation of the CD3ζ chain and the recovery of the complex after anti-CD3ε stimulation. ERK5 knockdown led to TCR/CD3 up-regulation at the cell surface and increased amounts of the CD3ζ chain. Inhibition of the MEK5-dependent phosphorylation status of the kinase domain of ERK5 in human T CD4(+) cells reduced CD3ζ ubiquitination and degradation, limiting TCR/CD3 down-regulation in anti-CD3-stimulated cells. Moreover, TCR/CD3 recovery at the cell surface, after anti-CD3ε treatment, is impaired by ERK5 knockdown or pharmacological inhibition of autophosphorylation in the ERK5 C-terminal region. ERK5 loss in thymocytes augmented cellular CD3ζ and increased cell surface levels of TCR/CD3 on CD4(+)CD8(+) thymocytes. This correlated with enhanced generation of CD4(+)CD8(-)CD25(+) thymocytes. Our findings define ERK5 as a novel kinase that modulates the levels of TCR/CD3 at the cell surface by promoting CD3ζ degradation and TCR/CD3 recovery after TCR stimulation.

    View details for DOI 10.1189/jlb.2A0115-034R

    View details for Web of Science ID 000371890000016

    View details for PubMedID 26302753

  • Erk5 contributes to maintaining the balance of cellular nucleotide levels and erythropoiesis CELL CYCLE Angulo-Ibanez, M., Rovira-Clave, X., Granados-Jaen, A., Downs, B., Kim, Y. C., Wang, S. M., Reina, M., Espel, E. 2015; 14 (24): 3864-3876


    An adequate supply of nucleotides is essential for accurate DNA replication, and inappropriate deoxyribonucleotide triphosphate (dNTP) concentrations can lead to replication stress, a common source of DNA damage, genomic instability and tumourigenesis. Here, we provide evidence that Erk5 is necessary for correct nucleotide supply during erythroid development. Mice with Erk5 knockout in the haematopoietic lineage showed impaired erythroid development in bone marrow, accompanied by altered dNTP levels and increased DNA mutagenesis in erythroid progenitors as detected by exome sequencing. Moreover, Erk5-depleted leukemic Jurkat cells presented a marked sensitivity to thymidine-induced S phase stalling, as evidenced by increased H2AX phosphorylation and apoptosis. The increase in thymidine sensitivity correlated with a higher dTTP/dCTP ratio. These results indicate that Erk5 is necessary to maintain the balance of nucleotide levels, thus preventing dNTP misincorporation and DNA damage in proliferative erythroid progenitors and leukemic Jurkat T cells.

    View details for DOI 10.1080/15384101.2015.1120914

    View details for Web of Science ID 000367063200018

    View details for PubMedID 26697837

  • The PDZ-binding domain of syndecan-2 inhibits LFA-1 high-affinity conformation CELLULAR SIGNALLING Rovira-Clave, X., Angulo-Ibanez, M., Reina, M., Espel, E. 2014; 26 (7): 1489-1499


    Syndecans are cell membrane proteoglycans that can modulate the activity and dynamics of some growth factor receptors and integrins. Here, we show the down-regulation of integrin lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1 (LFA-1) and inhibition of adhesion of Jurkat T cells transfected with syndecan-2. The PDZ-binding domain in the cytoplasmic region of syndecan-2 was necessary to block the LFA-1 high-affinity conformation, and to reduce cellular adhesion. A second cytoplasmic motif comprising tyrosines 179 and 191, and serines 187 and 188 contributed also to reduce LFA-1 function and cellular adhesion. Inhibition of the LFA-1 high-affinity conformation by syndecan-2 was independent of the expression of the talin head domain and RhoA, Rac1 and Cdc42 GTPases. These results demonstrate the importance of PDZ-binding domain of syndecan-2 for controlling LFA-1 affinity and cell adhesion.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.cellsig.2014.03.012

    View details for Web of Science ID 000336820000014

    View details for PubMedID 24662262

  • Syndecan-2 can promote clearance of T-cell receptor/CD3 from the cell surface IMMUNOLOGY Rovira-Clave, X., Angulo-Ibanez, M., Noguer, O., Espel, E., Reina, M. 2012; 137 (3): 214-225


    T cells express the heparan sulphate proteoglycans syndecan-2 and syndecan-4. Syndecan-4 plays a T-cell inhibitory role; however, the function of syndecan-2 is unknown. In an attempt to examine this function, syndecan-2 was expressed constitutively in Jurkat T cells. Interestingly, the expression of syndecan-2 decreased the surface levels of T-cell receptor (TCR)/CD3 complex, concomitant with intracellular retention of CD3ε and partial degradation of the TCR-ζ chain. Immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that intracellular CD3ε co-located with Rab-4 endosomes. However, the intracellular pool of CD3ε did not recycle to the cell surface. The lower TCR/CD3 surface levels caused by syndecan-2 led to reduced TCR/CD3 responsiveness. We show that the cytosolic PDZ-binding domain of syndecan-2 is not necessary to elicit TCR/CD3 down-regulation. These results identify a previously unrecognized means of controlling surface TCR/CD3 expression by syndecan-2.

    View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2567.2012.03626.x

    View details for Web of Science ID 000309450500003

    View details for PubMedID 22881146