Our group is dedicated to understand how metabolic alterations and obesity trigger other secondary diseases such as cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. We use a holistic approach, aiming to comprehend how these alterations occurring in obesity disrupt the communication between organs. In this context we have found that during obesity several stress kinases are activated in different tissues and that this activation affect the development of the tumour.

Organ crosstalk in cancer and metabolic diseases (Image: Guadalupe Sabio/BioRender)

We focus on three main aspects induced by obesity:

  • The alteration of adipose tissue and, consequently, the secretion of adipokines: we have observed that in adipose tissue, during obesity, stress kinases are activated, the mitochondria become dysfunctional and the circadian clock is altered. Our aim is to delve into whether these factors could serve as drivers of adipose tissue dysfunction during obesity and the associated comorbidities. Our primary focus lies in unravelling the endocrine function of adipose tissue, with particular attention to the distinctive role of brown adipose tissue in thermogenesis.
  • The onset of chronic inflammation, which is associated with an increased risk of cancer: we want to comprehend how stress kinases and alterations in metabolism within inflammatory cells impact the development of the disease.
  • Cell metabolism alteration as a driver of disease: metabolism controls the functionality of cells in our body as it is their means of obtaining ATP to carry out their functions or, in the case of tumours, to proliferate. Therefore, disruptions in cellular metabolism serve as drivers of diseases and modulation of metabolism offer new therapies for cardiovascular diseases and cancer. By utilizing animal models to manipulate metabolism, we aim to understand how metabolism is implicated in the development of these diseases.