María Rosa Ponce

PhD in Biology, Universidad de Alicante, Spain, 1996.

Positions held

  • 1989-1991, Research Assistant. Laboratory of Prof. Eric H. Davidson. Division of Biology. California Institute of Technology. Pasadena, California, USA.
  • Summer of 1992, 1993 and 2000, Visiting Associate. Laboratory of Prof. Eric H. Davidson. Division of Biology. California Institute of Technology.
  • 1992-1996, Graduate student. Laboratory of Prof. José Luis Micol. Universidad de Alicante. Alicante, Spain.
  • 1997-2002, Assistant Professor in Genetics. Universidad Miguel Hernández. Elche, Spain.
  • 2002-2010, Associate Professor in Genetics. Universidad Miguel Hernández.
  • 2010-..., Professor in Genetics. Universidad Miguel Hernández.

Research interests

One of the mechanisms regulating the expression of eukaryotic genes is mediated by small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), which include microRNAs (miRNAs). To negatively regulate their targets, siRNAs are incorporated into RNA-induced silencing complexes (RISCs). In all animal and plant species studied so far, the key role in RISC activity is played by a protein of the ARGONAUTE (AGO) family, which binds to a siRNA to cut or prevent translation of a target mRNA. The miRNA pathway has great biotechnological potential since through its manipulation any endogenous or viral gene can be silenced. We are studying the action and interactions of AGO1.

Teaching responsibilities

Taught undergraduate courses in Environmental Sciences, Biochemistry and Biotechnology, including: Genetics, Genetic Engineering and Molecular Genetics.

Bibliometrics