Short CV/Education and training

  • Dr. Elena Gómez-Díaz is Ramón y Cajal researcher, pending official appointment as CSIC Staff Scientist (ID:Distinguished Researcher), at Institute of Parasitology and Biomedicine López-Neyra of the CSIC, where she leads the malaria epigenetics group (Website Gomez Diaz lab). The group is interested in understanding the role of epigenetic processes in host-parasite interactions, with a focus on malaria. Currently, we are the PI, 2 PhD students, and 3 masters. The PL has strong hands-on experience in chromatin and transcriptional regulation in P. falciparum, and extensive experience in malaria-endemic regions. Previous research funded by Leonardo fellowship of Fundación BBVA permitted the isolation, cloning and genome sequencing of field parasites from Burkina-Faso, Africa. Similarly, the lab has pioneered the application of epigenomic approaches to study malaria parasite gene regulation.

  • Throughout my career I have accumulated extensive experience in evolutionary biology, parasitology and molecular biology, with specific training and experience in epigenetics, genomics and bioinformatics. My research outputs include 46 peer-reviewed papers (Google Scholar h-index: 23, >1790 citations). My international experience includes two postdoctoral stays: 3 years at the CNRS-IRD, France; and 3 years at Emory University, United States and more than 12 months working in Africa.

  • My contributions include 10 invited talks and > 30 oral presentations at international and national conferences/meetings. I have supervised 2 PhD theses and I am supervising 1 PhD thesis. I am part of the panel of experts of the research evaluation agency (REA) of the European Commission H2020, I have participated in evaluation committees for the AEI, ANR, FCT, AGAUR and other international agencies. I was editor of a special issue for Briefings in Functional Genomics, associate editor of Frontiers and a regular reviewer for more than 30 journals (e-life, PLoS Pathogens, Nucleic Acids Res, Nat Comm, Ecology Letters, Epigenetics & Chromatin, among others). I am founder and coordinator of "Woman in Malaria" community. I have participated in 13 research projects. I have been the principal investigator for 5 research projects. I have successfully competed and obtained funding from several national and international research agencies and government entities: two Marie Curie European grants, Juan de la Cierva and Ramón y Cajal reseach contracts, and a “Beca Leonardo” of BBVA foundation. Last year I was selected for the ERC consolidator grant and got short-listed in the reserve list for funding with qualification of “A-Excellent”. As stated by the ERC panel: “The PL is a dynamic and ambitious scientist with an excellent track record and important contributions to the field”.

Selected publications

  • Ruiz J.L. & Gómez-Díaz E. (2019) The second life of Plasmodium in the mosquito host: gene regulation on the move. Briefings in Functional Genomics, elz007, Doi:10.1093/bfgp/elz007.

  • Ruiz J.L., Yerbanga R.S., Lefèvre T., Ouedraogo J.B, Corces V.G. & Gómez-Díaz E. (2019). Chromatin changes induced by a Plasmodium falciparum infection in Anopheles gambiae. Epigenetics & Chromatin, 12(1), 5; Doi:10.1186/s13072-018-0250-9.

  • Ruiz J.L., Tena J.J., Bancells C., Cortés A., Gómez-Skarmeta J.L. & Gómez-Díaz E. (2018). Characterization of the accessible genome in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Nucleic Acids Research, gky643. PMID:30016465 Doi:10.1093/nar/gky643.

  • Gómez-Díaz, E., Yerbanga, R. S., Lefèvre, T., Cohuet, A., Rowley, M. J., Ouedraogo, J. B., & Corces, V. G. (2017). Epigenetic regulation of Plasmodium falciparum clonally variant gene expression during development in Anopheles gambiae. Sci. Rep. 7, 40655. PMID:28091569; PMCID:PMC5238449; Doi:10.1038/srep40655.

  • O. Duron, V. Noël, K. D. McCoy, M. Bonazzi, K. Sidi-Boumedine, O. Morel, F. Vavre, L. Zenner, E. Jourdain, P. Durand, C. Arnathau, F. Renaud, J.-F. Trape, A. S. Biguezoton, J. Cremaschi, M. Dietrich, E. Léger, A. Appelgren, M. Dupraz, E. Gómez-Díaz, G. Diatta, G.-K. Dayo, H. Adakal, S. Zoungrana, L. Vial & C. Chevillon (2015). The recent evolution of a maternally-inherited endosymbiont of ticks led to the emergence of the Q fever pathogen, Coxiella burnetii. PLoS Pathog. 11(5): e1004892. PMID:25978383; PMCID:PMC4433120; Doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1004892.

  • Gómez-Díaz E. & Corces V.G. (2014). Architectural proteins: Regulators of 3D genome organization in cell fate. Trends in Cell Biology, 24(11): 703–711. PMID:25218583 PMCID:PMC4254322; Doi:10.1016/j.tcb.2014.08.003.

  • Gómez-Díaz E., Rivero A., Chandre F. & Corces V.G. (2014). Insights into the epigenomic landscape of the human malaria vector Anopheles gambiae. Front Genet. 5:277. PMID:25177345; PMCID:PMC4133732; Doi:10.3389/fgene.2014.00277.

  • Gómez-Díaz E, Jordà M, Peinado MA, Rivero A. (2012) Epigenetics of host-pathogen interactions: the road ahead and the road behind. PLoS Pathog. 8(11): e1003007. PMID:23209403; PMCID:PMC3510240; Doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1003007.

  • Gómez-Díaz E, Figuerola J. (2010) New perspectives in tracing vector-borne interaction networks. Trends Parasitol. 26(10): 470-6. PMID:20580608; Doi:10.1016/j.pt.2010.06.007.

  • Gómez-Díaz E, Doherty PF Jr, Duneau D, McCoy KD. (2010). Cryptic vector divergence masks vector-specific patterns of infection: an example from the marine cycle of Lyme borreliosis. Evol Appl. 3(4): 391-401. PMID:25567933; PMCID:PMC3352467; Doi:10.1111/j.1752-4571.2010.00127.x.



Complete list of publications

Selected projects

As principal investigator

  • Co-infección SARS-CoV-2 y Plasmodium e implicaciones de salud global de la COVID19-malaria en África". Funding agency: CSIC PTI. Duration: 2020- 2021. Principal Investigator: Elena Gómez-Díaz. Amount: 155,000 Eur.

  • "Biología de la adaptación en los parásitos de la malaria humana en áreas endémicas". Funding agency: Becas Leonardo Fundación BBVA. Duration: 2017- 2019. Principal Investigator: Elena Gómez-Díaz. Amount: 32,000 Eur.

  • "Epigenética de las Interacciones Plasmodium-Anopheles" (BFU2015-65000-R). Funding agency: Proyectos De I+D+I Orientada a los Retos de la Sociedad, Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad (MINECO) Duration: 2016-2019. Principal Investigator: Elena Gómez-Díaz. Amount: 130,000 Eur.

  • "Dotación adicional Ramón y Cajal 2013". Funding agency: Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación. Duration: 2015-2020. Entity: Spanish Council of Scientific Research (CSIC, Spain). Principal Investigator: Elena Gómez-Díaz. Amount: 40,000 Eur.

  • Parasite evolution on islands (ERG-2010- 276838). Funding body: MSCA Actions FP7 European Commission. Entity: Spanish Council of Scientific Research (CSIC, Spain). Principal Investigator: Elena Gómez-Díaz. Duration: 2011-2014. Amount: 45,000 Eur.

  • Co-evolution and implications of vector adaptation: A case study on seabird ticks and Borrelia (FP7-MC-IEF-221243). Funding body: MSCA Actions FP7 European Commission. Entity: Centre Nationale de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS, France). Principal Investigator: Elena Gómez-Díaz. Duration: 2008-2010. Amount: 10,000 Eur.

Membership in scientific bodies/juries

  • Coordinator commission Equality and Diversity of IPBLN-CSIC, since 2019

  • Editor of Issue for Briefings in Functional Genomics, 2019

  • Co-creator and coordinator Women in Malaria community association, since 2018

  • Review Editor of Frontiers in Behavioral and Evolutionary Ecology, since 2014

  • Expert evaluator and rapporteur Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions FP7 and H2020. Research Executive Agency. EU Commission, since 2012

Soft Skills/Other activities and achievements

Soft Skills

  • Freethinking, Curiosity-driven, Independence, Confidence, Collaboration, Perseverance, Clarity, Ambition, Learning capacity


Other activities and achievements/family

  • Other domains of interests: Women in science, Science activism


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