Carmen Escolano

Carmen Escolano

is a Full professor at the Unit of Medicinal Chemistry in the Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences in the University of Barcelona. She received her PhD from this University in 1993. Then, she spent four months stay in the University College of London as Honorary Fellow and two years funded by a Marie Curie Research Training Contract in Kingston University (UK) working in the synthesis of complex molecules with biological interest. In 2003, was awarded with a Ramon y Cajal contract and in 2007 was appointed as associate professor. In 2016 funded by a Salvador de Maradiaga grant she spent three months in the Institute of Cancer Research (UK).

Her present research is aimed to face multidisciplinary projects within chemistry and biology. She is involved in the design and synthesis of organic entities to be used as pharmacological tools for the discovery of molecular mechanisms of action. The team is also developing new chemical entities that face health problems with high social impact. In particular, in unmet medical needs such as cancer, neuropathic pain and neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer Disease, AD).

Her teaching activities at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences have been related to the subjects Organic Chemistry and Medicinal Chemistry.


Ainoa Sánchez Arfelis
PhD Student

Pau Nadal Rodríguez
PhD Student

Donna Martínez López
PhD Student

Alice Cavallo
Visiting Master student from U. of Pavia (Italy)

Ainoa Sánchez Arfelis

I am a 1st year PhD student interested in researching the development of innovative drug candidates to find more effective therapeutic cancer treatments, such as the use of PROTACs approach on E3 ligases.

I graduated with a degree in Pharmacy at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences, University of Barcelona. During my program, I was placed at the laboratory of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Medicinal Chemistry Department as a research assistant.  The focus of my research was on the synthesis of small-molecule inhibitors in order to use them as chemical probes to describe bromodomain biology. I pursued my master thesis at the Verhlest Laboratory in the KU Leuven (Belgium). My thesis was centered on the synthesis of photocaged Notch inhibitors molecules.


Pau Nadal Rodríguez

I am a Pharmacy graduate by the University of Barcelona. As an undergraduate I spent some time as a research assistant in the Medicinal Chemistry lab in the Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Chemistry in Dr. Carmen Escolano’s research group. After graduating I had the opportunity to engage in a one-year Industrial Placement at Glaxo Smith Kline (Stevenage, UK), where I worked in the MedChem department as a synthetic chemist and where I gained extensive insight into the Pharmaceutical R&D field in general and the drug discovery process in particular.

I started my PhD under the supervision of Dr. Carmen Escolano and Dr. Rodolfo Lavilla on October 2020. My thesis is framed within the study of Ugi-type multicomponent reactions, with the objective of obtaining new compounds with potential biological activity.


Donna Martínez López

I’m a recently graduated Pharmacy student whose goal is to gain a deeper understanding of chemistry and drug discovery. Designing, synthesizing, and purifying various compounds with potential biologic action for various metabolic illnesses are the main objectives of my PhD.

I got the chance to work in the medicinal chemistry lab in the Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Chemistry in Professor Carmen Escolano’s research group while I was a pharmacy undergraduated at Barcelona University at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences.

During my time there, I earned a Beca de Col·laboració, which gave me the chance to continue working at the lab and gain more experience.


Alice Cavallo

I am a student from University of Pavia and I am doing a master degree in Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Technology.

In Dr. Carmen Escolano research group I am doing a six months traineeship for my degree thesis and I am flanking Carla in her research projects.







  • Andrea Bagán Polonio (PhD, 2022)
  • Judit Pujol Turró (M.S, 2022)
  • Sergio Rodríguez Arévalo (PhD, 2021)



Multicomponent reactions to access molecules with pharmacological interest

An efficient and user-friendly synthetic process involving the combination of multicomponent reaction methodology and microwave heating generates unprecedented (2-imidazolin-4-yl)phosphonates. This…

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New imidazoline I2 receptor ligands

The imidazoline I2 receptors (I2-IRs) are altered in the brain of Alzheimer’s disease patients and I2-IR ligands may have therapeutic…

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Discovery of Novel BRD4 Ligand Scaffolds by Automated Navigation of the Fragment Chemical Space

Serena G Piticchio , Míriam Martínez-Cartró , Salvatore Scaffidi , Moira Rachman , Sergio Rodriguez-Arevalo , Ainoa Sanchez-Arfelis , Carmen Escolano , Sarah Picaud , Tobias Krojer , Panagis Filippakopoulos , Frank von Delft , Carles Galdeano , Xavier Barril. J Med Chem. 2021, 64(24),…

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Benzofunanyl-2-imidazoles as Imidazoline I2 Receptor Ligands for Alzheimer’s Disease.

Rodríguez-Arévalo, S.; Bagán, A.; Griñan-Ferré, C.; Vasilopoulou, F.; Pallàs, M.; Brocos-Mosquera, I.; Callado, L.F.; Loza, M.I.; Martínez, A.L.; Brea, J.;…

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Disease-modifying treatment with I 2 imidazoline receptor ligand LSL60101 in an Alzheimer’s disease mouse model: a comparative study with donepezil

Vasilopoulou F, Rodríguez-Arévalo S, Bagán A, Escolano C, Griñán-Ferré C, Pallàs M. Disease-modifying treatment with I2 imidazoline receptor ligand LSL60101 in…

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Selected Projects

Phosphoiminoproline LPIP, a Disease-Modifying Drug for Alzheimers Disease (2022-2024) Prueba de concepto Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación. Spain. PDC2022-133441-I00. 130.000 euros. PI: Carmen Escolano/Rodolfo Lavilla.

Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacology of Neurodegenerative diseases. Ajuts per donar suport a l’activitat científica dels grups de recerca de Catalunya (SGR-Cat 2021). 2021 SGR 00357. 60.000 euros. PI: Carmen Escolano.

Multicomponent Reactions: Discovery, Development and Applications in Biomedicine (2019-2022). Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación, Spain: PID2019-107991RB-I00. 95.00 €. PI: Carmen Escolano/Rodolfo Lavilla.

Covalent inhibitors of HSP72. 2016. Salvador de Madariaga program. Institute of Cancer Research. Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte. PRX15-00377. 11.205 €. PI: Carmen Escolano.

Unraveling PEPCK-M metabolic reprogramming (2016-2019). Ministerio de Economia y Competitividad. BFU2015-66030-R. 120.000 €. PI: José Carlos Perales

Unveiling soluble epoxide hydrolase as a new pharmacological target in Alzheimer’s disease (2016-2019). Ministerio de Economia y Competitividad. SAF2016-77703-C2-2-R. 205.000 €. PI: Mercè Pallàs.

Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacology of Neurodegenerative Diseases (2017-2020). Agència de Gestió d’Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca (AGAUR). 2017SGR.10620.000 €. PI: Diego Muñoz-Torrero.

Novel compounds for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders (2019-2020). Fundació La Caixa. CI18-00002. 70.000 €. PI: Carmen Escolano/Mercè Pallàs.


Synthetic I2 Imidazoline Receptor Ligands for Prevention or Treatment of Human Brain Disorders.
Escolano, C.; Pallás, M.; Griñán-Ferré, C.; Abás, S.; Callado, L.-F.; García-Sevilla, J. A.
WO 2019/121853 A1, June 27, 2019.


  • Mercè Pallàs (University of Barcelona, Spain)
  • Luis F. Callado (University of the Basque Country, Spain)
  • Jesús A. García Sevilla and M. Julia García-Fuster (University of the Balearic Islands, Spain)
  • Katarina Nikolic (University of Belgrade, Serbia)
  • Mabel Loza and José M. Brea (Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Spain)
  • Javier Luque (Universitat de Barcelona, Spain)
  • Lieve Naesens, Dirk Daelemans and Steven de Jonghe (KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium)
  • Francesc X. Sureda (Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Tarragona, Spain)
  • Manuel Vázquez-Carrera (University of Barcelona, Spain)
  • Jose C. Perales (University of Barcelona, Spain)
  • Elies Molins (Institut of Material Sciences, Spain)
  • Belén Pérez (Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain)
  • José Ángel Morales-García (Complutense University of Madrid, Spain)


Dr. Carmen Escolano
Laboratory of Medicinal Chemistry
Faculty of Pharmacy and Food Sciences
University of Barcelona & Institute of Biomedicine (IBUB)
Tel. 93 4024542

ORCID: 0000-0002-9117-8239
Scopus Author ID: 6603704436
Researcher ID:  F-3073-2016