CENTRO DE BIOLOGÍA MOLECULAR SEVERO OCHOACaptura de pantalla 2022 09 14 a las 10.27.10    

Tau function and dysfunction in Alzheimer disease

Research summary:

Tau is a neuronal protein involved, directly or indirectly, in different neuronal functions. Tau dysfunction could result in neurodegenerative disorders, tauopathies, being Alzheimer disease the most relevant one. Tau functions depend on its subcellular localization and binding to specific neuronal components. Our objective is to analyze these tau functions and possible new ones. We have analyzed the structural and functional differences between human and mouse tau proteins by focusing in an extra aminoacid sequence only present in human tau, that has a function in axonal transport of some proteins, also we have studied the secretion mechanism that results in the presence of extracellular tau, or the role of tau protein in the localization of NMDA extrasynaptic receptors. Since tau is a phosphoprotein mainly modified by GSK3b kinase, we have studied the consequences of GSK3b overexpression in neuronal cell.

Mainly, in the group headed by Dr. Hernández, the role of tau presence in glia cells (oligodendrocytes, astrocytes and microglia) was analyzed, and it was also found that different cell surface receptors could be involved in the interaction of extracellular tau with neurons or with glia cells.

Finally, our group has done several collaborations with other groups located inside or outside of the CBMSO, in aspects related to Alzheimer disease or other neurodegenerative disorders or aging. About aging, we have described the rejuvenation of some old granule neurons, located at hippocampal area upon expression of the reprogramming (Yamanaka) factors.


Figure 1 - Microglia internalizing extracellular tau protein (red). The white signal corresponds to the microtubules of the cell.


Figure 2 - Focal cerebral ischemia (pMCAO) induces an increase 3R-Tau isoform in oligodendrocytes in the damaged area.


* For external calls please dial 34 91196 followed by the extension number
Last nameNameLaboratoryExt.*e-mailProfessional category
Ávila de GradoJesús2084564javila(at)cbm.csic.esDoctor Vinculado "Ad Honorem"
Cuadros CatalánRaquel2084592rcuadros(at)cbm.csic.esE. Técnicos Especializados de Organismos Públicos de Investigación
Domene SerranoIndalo2084592Estudiante TFM
García-Escudero BarrerasVega2084592vescudero(at)cbm.csic.esProfesor Titular Universidad, GA
Gómez RamosAlberto2084592alberto.gomez(at)csic.esContratado CIBER
Martín LópezGerardo2094552Contrato Predoctoral
Medina PadillaMiguel2084592Contratado CIBER
Stoliarov RadushinskayaAnastasia2084592Estudiante TFM
Torre AlonsoNuria de la2084803ndelatorre(at)cbm.csic.esM2 66,66%
Vallés SaizLaura2084592laura.valles(at)cbm.csic.esDoctor FC3

Relevant publications:

  •  Avila, J. & Perry, G. (2021) A Multilevel View of the Development of Alzheimer's Disease, Neuroscience. 457, 283-293.

  •  Villa Gonzalez, M., Valles-Saiz, L., Hernandez, I. H., Avila, J., Hernandez, F. & Perez-Alvarez, M. J. (2020) Focal cerebral ischemia induces changes in oligodendrocytic tau isoforms in the damaged area, Glia. 68, 2471-2485.

  •  Rodriguez-Matellan, A., Avila, J. & Hernandez, F. (2020) Overexpression of GSK-3beta in Adult Tet-OFF GSK-3beta Transgenic Mice, and Not During Embryonic or Postnatal Development, Induces Tau Phosphorylation, Neurodegeneration and Learning Deficits, Front Mol Neurosci. 13, 561470.

  •   Perez, M., Hernandez, F. & Avila, J. (2020) Protein Biomarkers for the Diagnosis of Alzheimer's Disease at Different Stages of Neurodegeneration, Int J Mol Sci. 21.

  •   Perea, J. R., Bolos, M. & Avila, J. (2020) Microglia in Alzheimer's Disease in the Context of Tau Pathology, Biomolecules. 10.

  •   Hernandez, F., Merchan-Rubira, J., Valles-Saiz, L., Rodriguez-Matellan, A. & Avila, J. (2020) Differences Between Human and Murine Tau at the N-terminal End, Front Aging Neurosci. 12, 11.

  •  Gargini, R., Segura-Collar, B., Herranz, B., Garcia-Escudero, V., Romero-Bravo, A., Nunez, F. J., Garcia-Perez, D., Gutierrez-Guaman, J., Ayuso-Sacido, A., Seoane, J., Perez-Nunez, A., Sepulveda-Sanchez, J. M., Hernandez-Lain, A., Castro, M. G., Garcia-Escudero, R., Avila, J. & Sanchez-Gomez, P. (2020) The IDH-TAU-EGFR triad defines the neovascular landscape of diffuse gliomas, Sci Transl Med. 12.

  •   Garcia-Arriaza, J., Marin, M. Q., Merchan-Rubira, J., Mascaraque, S. M., Medina, M., Avila, J., Hernandez, F. & Esteban, M. (2020) Tauopathy Analysis in P301S Mouse Model of Alzheimer Disease Immunized With DNA and MVA Poxvirus-Based Vaccines Expressing Human Full-Length 4R2N or 3RC Tau Proteins, Vaccines (Basel). 8.

  •  Avila, J. (2020) The Role of TGF-beta1 in Promoting Microglial Abeta Phagocytosis, Neuroscience. 438, 215-216.

  •   Sayas, C. L., Medina, M., Cuadros, R., Olla, I., Garcia, E., Perez, M., Ferrer, I., Hernandez, F. & Avila, J. (2019) Role of tau N-terminal motif in the secretion of human tau by End Binding proteins, PLoS One. 14, e0210864.

  •   Perez, M., Avila, J. & Hernandez, F. (2019) Propagation of Tau via Extracellular Vesicles, Front Neurosci. 13, 698.

  •  Perea, J. R., Lopez, E., Diez-Ballesteros, J. C., Avila, J., Hernandez, F. & Bolos, M. (2019) Extracellular Monomeric Tau Is Internalized by Astrocytes, Front Neurosci. 13, 442.

  •   Pallas-Bazarra, N., Draffin, J., Cuadros, R., Antonio Esteban, J. & Avila, J. (2019) Tau is required for the function of extrasynaptic NMDA receptors, Sci Rep. 9, 9116.

  •   Merchan-Rubira, J., Sebastian-Serrano, A., Diaz-Hernandez, M., Avila, J. & Hernandez, F. (2019) Peripheral nervous system effects in the PS19 tau transgenic mouse model of tauopathy, Neurosci Lett. 698, 204-208..

  •  Kenny, A., Jimenez-Mateos, E. M., Zea-Sevilla, M. A., Rabano, A., Gili-Manzanaro, P., Prehn, J. H. M., Henshall, D. C., Avila, J., Engel, T. & Hernandez, F. (2019) Proteins and microRNAs are differentially expressed in tear fluid from patients with Alzheimer's disease, Sci Rep. 9, 15437.

  •  Jurado-Arjona, J., Rodriguez-Matellan, A., Avila, J. & Hernandez, F. (2019) GSK3beta overexpression driven by GFAP promoter improves rotarod performance, Brain Res.

  •   Jadhav, S., Avila, J., Scholl, M., Kovacs, G. G., Kovari, E., Skrabana, R., Evans, L. D., Kontsekova, E., Malawska, B., de Silva, R., Buee, L. & Zilka, N. (2019) A walk through tau therapeutic strategies, Acta Neuropathol Commun. 7, 22.

  •   Hernandez, F., Cuadros, R., Olla, I., Garcia, C., Ferrer, I., Perry, G. & Avila, J. (2019) Differences in structure and function between human and murine tau, Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Basis Dis. 1865, 2024-2030.

  • Pallas-Bazarra, N., Avila, J. & Llorens-Martin, M. (2019) Maturation dynamics of the axon initial segment (AIS) of newborn dentate granule cells in young adult C57BL/6J mice, J Neurosci.

Doctoral theses:

  • Noemí Pallas Bazarra (2015).Estudio del papel de la proteína tau en la modulación de la neurogénesis hipocampal adulta. Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. Directores: María Llorens-Martín y Félix Hernández.
  • Patricia Martín-Maestro (2016). Mitophagy dysfunction in peripherasl and neural models of Alzheimer disease. Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. Directores: Vega García-Escudero y Jesús Avila.

NOTE! This site uses cookies and similar technologies.

If you not change browser settings, you agree to it. Learn more

I understand


What are cookies?

A cookie is a file that is downloaded to your computer when you access certain web pages. Cookies allow a web page, among other things, to store and retrieve information about the browsing habits of a user or their equipment and, depending on the information they contain and the way they use their equipment, they can be used to recognize the user.

Types of cookies

Classification of cookies is made according to a series of categories. However, it is necessary to take into account that the same cookie can be included in more than one category.

  1. Cookies according to the entity that manages them

    Depending on the entity that manages the computer or domain from which the cookies are sent and treat the data obtained, we can distinguish:

    • Own cookies: those that are sent to the user's terminal equipment from a computer or domain managed by the editor itself and from which the service requested by the user is provided.
    • Third party cookies: those that are sent to the user's terminal equipment from a computer or domain that is not managed by the publisher, but by another entity that processes the data obtained through the cookies. When cookies are installed from a computer or domain managed by the publisher itself, but the information collected through them is managed by a third party, they cannot be considered as own cookies.

  2. Cookies according to the period of time they remain activated

    Depending on the length of time that they remain activated in the terminal equipment, we can distinguish:

    • Session cookies: type of cookies designed to collect and store data while the user accesses a web page. They are usually used to store information that only is kept to provide the service requested by the user on a single occasion (e.g. a list of products purchased).
    • Persistent cookies: type of cookies in which the data is still stored in the terminal and can be accessed and processed during a period defined by the person responsible for the cookie, which can range from a few minutes to several years.

  3. Cookies according to their purpose

    Depending on the purpose for which the data obtained through cookies are processed, we can distinguish between:

    • Technical cookies: those that allow the user to navigate through a web page, platform or application and the use of different options or services that exist in it, such as controlling traffic and data communication, identifying the session, access to restricted access parts, remember the elements that make up an order, perform the purchase process of an order, make a registration or participation in an event, use security elements during navigation, store content for the broadcast videos or sound or share content through social networks.
    • Personalization cookies: those that allow the user to access the service with some predefined general characteristics based on a series of criteria in the user's terminal, such as the language, the type of browser through which the user accesses the service, the regional configuration from where you access the service, etc.
    • Analytical cookies: those that allow the person responsible for them to monitor and analyse the behaviour of the users of the websites to which they are linked. The information collected through this type of cookies is used in the measurement of the activity of the websites, applications or platforms, and for the elaboration of navigation profiles of the users of said sites, applications and platforms, in order to introduce improvements in the analysis of the data of use made by the users of the service.

Cookies used on our website

The CBMSO website uses Google Analytics. Google Analytics is a simple and easy to use tool that helps website owners to measure how users interact with the content of the site. You can consult more information about the cookies used by Google Analitycs in this link.

Acceptance of the Cookies Policy

The CBMSO assumes that you accept the use of cookies if you continue browsing, considering that it is a conscious and positive action from which the user's consent is inferred. In this regard, you are previously informed that such behaviour will be interpreted that you accept the installation and use of cookies.

Knowing this information, it is possible to carry out the following actions:

  • Accept cookies: if the user presses the acceptance button, this warning will not be displayed again when accessing any page of the portal.
  • Review the cookies policy: the user can access to this page in which the use of cookies is detailed, as well as links to modify the browser settings.

How to modify the configuration of cookies

Using your browser you can restrict, block or delete cookies from any web page. In each browser the process is different, here we show you links on this particular of the most used browsers: