Biography of Margarita Salas Falgueras (1938-VVVV)

Spanish biochemistry Canero (Asturias), born on November 30, 1938. Disciple of Severo Ochoa, who worked in the United States, has made with her husband, the scientist Eladio Viñuela, a fruitful work, to promote Spanish research in the field of Biochemistry and molecular biology, and to promote the formation of new generations of scientists. In December 2001, he/she became the third female member of the Royal Spanish, together with the escritoria Ana María Matute and historian Carmen Iglesias. He/She entered on June 4, 2003, to occupy the Chair of the institution i.

He graduated in chemistry in 1960, from the Complutense University of Madrid, and holds a PhD in Biochemistry from the same University. Since then, he/she has dedicated to biochemical research, becoming a pioneering basic research, and especially the study of phage Ae 29, a bacterial virus that has a protein attached to the ends of the material genetic.

He began his scientific career in the United States where, from 1964 to 1967, he/she works with Severo Ochoa in the Department of biochemistry of the University of New York. After he/she returned to Spain and with the help of her husband starts a research laboratory. From 1968 until 1992 is Professor of Molecular Genetics at the Faculty of chemical from the Complutense University of Madrid, and at the same time, Research Professor of the Superior Council of scientific research (CSIC), in the Centre of biological research, from 1974 until 1977; also, from 1977 to 1981 he/she was Professor at the Faculty of Sciences of the Autonomous University of Madrid and directed the Centre for biology Molecular Severo Ochoa, belonging to the same University, until 1994, where still working as a research professor and heads the team of researchers working with Bacteriophage Ae 29.

In 1970, he/she discovered a United terminal protein covalently bound to the ends of the DNA. The discovery of this protein (TP) led to the discovery of a new mechanism to initiate DNA replication; It characterized the various components involved in the mechanism of replication and got to be in the test tube, complete the nucleic acid replication. These studies served as the model for the replication of viruses which have a similar protein and which replicated with similar mechanism, such as polio, of the FMD virus, hepatitis B and C, human adenovirus, which acts in the tumor transformation, and a series of viruses that infect plants.

With more than 200 scientific papers published in journals and books, Margarita Salas belongs to the most prestigious societies and national and international scientific institutes, and is a member of the Editorial Board of important scientific publications; These are Gene, FASEB Journal, Biological Chemistry, Virus Research, J. Biotechnology, FEMS Microbiological Reviews, European J. Biochemistry and EMBO Journal. He/She has participated in numerous conferences and has directed a score of doctoral theses.

He is currently a member of the Council scientist of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO), which form part since 1983, and is the second woman who belongs to the Council. It is a founding member of the European Academy of Sciences and since 1988 is academic of the Real Academia Española of the sciences exact, physical and natural, and President of the Spanish society of biochemistry. In 1995, he/she was appointed Director of the Institute of Spain, governing body of the eight reales national academies.

His research has been recognized with numerous awards and distinctions, including: Prize "Santiago Ramón y Cajal" in 1973; Severe biomedical research award Ochoa in 1986; Prize international Carlos J. Finley of UNESCO in 1991, who shared with her husband and with the Belgian Jean Marie Ghuysen, for his contribution in the field of Microbiology and its applications in molecular biology; Prize King Jaime I de Investigación in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in 1994, which he/she dedicated to her husband, now deceased; It was, also named Doctor Honoris cause by the University of Oviedo in 1996, and awarded the Medal of the Principality of Asturias in 1997 and the national prize for scientific research "Santiago Ramón y Cajal" in 2000.

Also in the year 2000 and for the first time a woman, the independent Foundation, in collaboration with the CSIC, paid tribute to the researcher within the "Universal Spanish" cycle, established in 1996 by this Foundation and intended to highlight personalities with internationally.

Margarita Salas has contributed significantly to the understanding of the processes of gene expression, above all with Ae 29 phage DNA replication studies. The importance of the positions and the long list of awards and distinctions received throughout the world make it a remarkable woman and respected by the entire scientific community.

Links on the Internet (This page provides information about the replication and transcription of DNA of the Bacteriophage Ae 29, as well as publications, awards and distinctions of Margarita Salas).