Iñaki Ruiz-Trillo is an ICREA Research Professor at the Institut de Biologia Evolutiva (CSIC-UPF). His educational background includes a B.S. and a Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Barcelona. Funded by grants from EMBO and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, he completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Dalhousie University (Canada). He has also performed short term research projects at the Joint Genome Institute, the University of Arkansas and the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics. Iñaki has published more than 80 peer-reviewed articles, most of them in high impact journals, such as Cell, Science, eLife, MBE, and PNAS. He has lead several research projects, including 2 ERC grants. He is an EMBO member and has served on the editorial board of several journals. His current research interests include the origin of multicellular animals, the evolution of complex life forms, and the diversity of eukaryotes.
The lab is interested in understanding how multicellular animals emerged from their unicellular ancestors. To this aim, we perform comparative and functional genomic analyses between multicellular animals and their closest unicellular relatives to unravel the nature of the unicellular ancestor that gave rise to animals. We are also currently developing genetic tools in the closest unicellular relatives to Metazoa and trying to address the origin of animal cell differentiation and animal cell types. Finally, we are also interested in unraveling the hidden diversity of eukaryotes using metabarcoding data.