Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte

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Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte
Born1960 (age 63–64)
Hellín, Albacete, Spain
Alma materUniversity of Valencia
University of Bologna
Scientific career

Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte (born December 12, 1960, in Hellín, Albacete) is a Spanish biochemist and developmental biologist. He is a professor in the Gene Expression Laboratories at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, California since 1993.


Izpisua Belmonte graduated from the University of Valencia, Spain with a bachelor's degree in Pharmacy and Science. He then earned a master's degree in pharmacology from the same university before moving on to complete his Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Pharmacology at the University of Bologna, Italy and the University of Valencia, Spain. He followed that with a stage as a postdoctoral fellow in different institutions, including the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), in Heidelberg, Germany and University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Los Angeles, USA prior to moving to the Salk Institute in 1993.[1]


In 2004, Izpisua Belmonte helped to establish the Center for Regenerative Medicine in Barcelona and was its Director between 2004 and 2014.[1][2]

He works as a specialist at Altos Labs. In 2023, due to the interest generated by his work, one of his presentations in Boston drew such a large crowd that it violated the fire code and was reduced by the police. A biologist has cautioned against "hype" and recommended waiting for more scientific publications.[3]

Research and claims[edit]

Izpisua Belmonte is a main catalyzer in one of today's most promising areas of biomedicine: regenerative medicine. His work may help to discover new molecules and specific gene/cell treatments to prevent and cure diseases affecting mankind both in the adult and embryonic stages, as well as inducing endogenous in vivo regenerative responses that may allow for tissue and organ regeneration in humans. It also may contribute to increase our knowledge of aging and aging-associated diseases, thereby leading to healthier aging and increased lifespan.[4][5][6]

His conceptual discoveries and methodologies for regenerative medicine include:

  • Elucidating some of the key cellular and molecular bases of how an organism with millions of cells develops from a single cell embryo after fertilization.[7][8][9][10][11][12][13]
  • Seminal discoveries towards understanding the molecular basis underlying somatic cell reprogramming
  • New methodologies for the differentiation of human stem cells into various cells types and organoids, like the kidney and heart.[14][13][15][16]
  • Development of novel stem cell models of human aging and aging-associated diseases, and discovery of new drivers of rejuvenation.[14][17][18]
  • Novel genetic and epigenetic technologies to both treat, and prevent the transmission, of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA originated diseases.[14][19][20][21]
  • Proof of concept that iPSC technology can be used for the generation of disease corrected patient specific cells with potential value for cell therapy.[22]
  • The development of methodologies for culturing embryos, including non-human primates, and creating synthetic mammalian embryos.[23][24]
  • Development of technologies that allow differentiation of human cells inside embryos of different species. These results may allow for the generation of human tissues and organs.[25][26][27][28]


A secondary school, Instituto Enseñanza Secundaria (IES) Izpisua Belmonte, was named after Izpisua Belmonte in his hometown of Hellín, Albacete, Spain.[29] In October, 2018, he was named by Time Magazine as one of the 50 Most Influential People in Healthcare of 2018.[30] Twice his work was among those selected by Science as the "Breakthrough of the Year," in 2008 for reprogramming and again in 2013 for the generation of mini-organs.[31][32]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Old Izpisua Belmonte Website". Archived from the original on 2012-01-25.
  2. ^ "CMRB Director".
  3. ^ Regalado, Antonio (17 July 2023). "Police got called to an overcrowded presentation on "rejuvenation" technology". MIT Technolog Review.
  4. ^ Wade, Nicholas (9 November 2009). "NYT Regeneration". The New York Times.
  5. ^ Wade, Nicholas (15 December 2016). "NYT Aging". The New York Times.
  6. ^ Belluck, Pam (2 August 2017). "NYT Gene Editing". The New York Times.
  7. ^ Sampedro, Javier (23 March 2001). "El Pais Regeneration". El País.
  8. ^ Elvira, Malen Ruiz de (6 August 1998). "El Pais Asymmetry". El País.
  9. ^ Capdevila, Javier (5 May 1999). "El Pais Wing Gene". El País.
  10. ^ "El Pais Gene". El País. 7 November 1998.
  11. ^ Sampedro, Javier (6 May 2015). "El Pais Chimera". El País.
  12. ^ Sampedro, Javier (17 November 2013). "El Pais Organoids". El País.
  13. ^ a b "Stat Human Pig Chimera". 7 August 2017.
  14. ^ a b c "Salk Institute Profile".
  15. ^ "Nature Fanconi Anemia". Nature. 460 (7251): 9. July 2009. doi:10.1038/7251009a.
  16. ^ Naik, Shruti (September 2018). "Nature Medicine Wound Healing". Nature Medicine. 24 (9): 1311–1312. doi:10.1038/s41591-018-0179-3. PMID 30194410.
  17. ^ "SDUT Profile". 5 August 2017.
  18. ^ "New Yorker Aging". The New Yorker.
  19. ^ "WP Gene Therapy". The Washington Post.
  20. ^ "LAT Gene Editing". Los Angeles Times. 2 August 2017.
  21. ^ "WP Gene Editing". The Washington Post.
  22. ^ "Correcting Fanconi anaemia - healthy cells derived from diseased ones offer treatment hope". New York Stem Cell Foundation. Retrieved 2021-09-13.
  23. ^ "Artificial embryos draw closer with Salk Institute work in mice". San Diego Union-Tribune. 2019-10-18. Retrieved 2021-09-13.
  24. ^ Cyranoski, David (2019-10-31). "Primate embryos grown in the lab for longer than ever before". Nature. 575 (7781): 17–18. Bibcode:2019Natur.575...17C. doi:10.1038/d41586-019-03326-5. PMID 31690853. S2CID 207896205.
  25. ^ "Human Muscle Cells are Growing Inside of a Pig". Time. Retrieved 2021-09-13.
  26. ^ Wade, Nicholas (2017-01-26). "New Prospects for Growing Human Replacement Organs in Animals". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-09-13.
  27. ^ "Researchers have created embryos that are part-human and part-monkey". The Economist. 2021-04-15. ISSN 0013-0613. Retrieved 2021-09-13.
  28. ^ Hotz, Robert Lee (2021-04-26). "Creation of First Human-Monkey Embryos Sparks Concern". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2021-09-13.
  29. ^ "IESIB".
  30. ^ "2018 Time Health Care 50".
  31. ^ Vogel, Gretchen (2008-12-19). "Reprogramming Cells". Science. 322 (5909): 1766–1767. doi:10.1126/science.322.5909.1766. PMID 19095902. S2CID 10410812.
  32. ^ "Human Cloning at Last". Science. 342 (6165): 1436–1437. 2013-12-20. doi:10.1126/science.342.6165.1436-a. PMID 24357287.

External links[edit]

Media related to Juan Carlos Izpisua at Wikimedia Commons