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R Agis group. Epigenetic Mechanisms in Neurodegenerative and Psychiatric Diseases
Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria Galicia Sur - IISGS. Hospital Álvaro Cunqueiro - Bloque Técnico - Planta 2 - Sala Investigación Estrada Clara Campoamor nº341, 36312 Vigo

Neuropsychiatric Diseases, translational medicine, epigenetic therapy, DNA methylation, Histone acetylation


Patient samples, mice models, in vitro studies. - We have a Biobank (with Brain Tissue Bank) that belongs to the National Biobank Network: - Easy accessibility to recruit patients for clinical trials, projects, collaborations, etc.


Variety of molecular techniques. Genomics, Proteomics, confocal microscopy, FACS, Laser Microdissection Microscope, Cell Culture. - Our research lab is within the largest hospital in Galicia, Hospital Álvaro Cunqueiro, inaugurated on June 2015.

Collaborations outside COST

Prof. Andre Fischer. German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Goettingen, Germany. Epigenetics and Systems Medicine in Neurodegenerative Diseases. Dr. Stefan Bonn. German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Goettingen, Germany. Computational Systems Biology. Prof. Hector J. Caruncho. College of Pharmacy and Nutrition, University of Saskatchewan, Canada. Discovery of novel biomarkers and novel drug targets of mental disorders. Prof. Lisa Kalynchuk. College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Canada. Effect of chronic stress on brain function. Prof. Alessandro Guidotti. Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA. The role of neurosteroids in brain function. Prof. Graziano Pinna. Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA. Developing new therapies for PTSD and anxiety disorders.

Short description of ongoing research projects

Research areas: • Study of genome-environment interactions (epigenome) that occur during the cognitive decline associated with aging, psychiatric disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. • Search for biomarkers and therapeutic targets for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of psychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases.

  1. Tomas-Roig J, Benito E*, Agís-Balboa RC*, Piscitelli F, Hoyer-Fender S, Di Marzo V, Havemann-Reinecke U. Chronic exposure to cannabinoids during adolescence causes long-lasting behavioral deficits in adult mice. Addict Biol. 2016 (*equal contribution). doi: 10.1111/adb.12446.
  2. Agis-Balboa RC*, Pavelka S, Kerimoglu C, Fischer A. Loss of HDAC5 impairs memory function: Implications for Alzheimer’s disease. J Alzheimers Dis. 33(1):35-44, 2013 (*corresponding author).
  3. Zovoilis A*, Agbemenyah HY*, Agis-Balboa RC, Stilling RM, Edbauer D, Rao P, Farinelli L, Delalle I, Schmitt A, Falkai P, Bahari-Javan S, Burkhardt S, Sananbenesi F & Fischer A. Micro-RNA-34c is a novel target to treat dementias. EMBO J. 30(20):4299-308, 2011 (*equal contribution).
  4. Agis-Balboa RC, Arcos-Diaz D*, Wittnam J*, Govindarajan N, Blom K, Burkhardt S, Haladyniak U, Agbemenyah HY, Zovoilis HY, Salinas-Riester G, Opitz L, Sananbenesi F & Fischer A. A hippocampal insulin-growth-factor 2 pathway regulates the extinction of fear memories. EMBO J. 30(19):4071-4083, 2011 (*equal contribution).
  5. Agis-Balboa RC, Pinna G, Zhubi A, Maloku E, Veldic M, Costa E, Guidotti A. Characterization of brain neurons that express enzymes mediating neurosteroid biosynthesis. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 103(39):14602-14607, 2006.
Other activities of potential interest to others

• Associate Professor for PhD Programme in Neuroscience and Clinical Psychology • Member of the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies (FENS) • Member of the Spanish Society of Neuroscience (SENC) • Member of “Divulgacción AGC CCT” Galician Association of Communication of Scientific Culture and Technology • Science Communicator (blogs, magazines, newspapers, radio,....)

Cost UE