This research group studies the role of the immune system in respiratory health and disease, specifically focusing in alveolar regeneration after an acute or chronic injury. Of particular interest are the function, supply and production of leukocytes into the lung after disease, and the signals that regulate their mobilization after a damage such as an infection, an acute damage or fibrosis.

The group uses interdisciplinary approaches to study the crosstalk between leukocytes and lung resident cells such as alveolar type II cells, resident alveolar and interstitial macrophages and fibroblasts. Its researchers use disease mouse models to mechanistically dissect innate and adaptive immune cell functions in fibrosis and inflammation as we believe that immune cells are the critical determinant of the correct tissue regeneration or the impaired reparation.

In more detail, this team seeks to understand how molecular & cellular signaling through cannabinoid receptors and their lipidic ligands – endogenous cannabinoids – affect fibrosis progress.

Their work has been funded by the Carlos III Health Institute (ISCIII), the Agency for Management of University and Research Grants of Generalitat de Catalunya (AGAUR) and the Catalan Society of Pneumology (SOCAP).

Keywords: pulmonary fibrosis, acute lung injury, immune system, fibroblasts, macrophages, respiratory diseases.

Lung Immunity Translational Research Group

Research lines

Role of cannabinoid system in pulmonary fibrosis

PI: Raquel Guillamat Prats

The overall objective of this project is to broaden and deepen our understanding of endocannabinoid signaling in pulmonary fibrosis. We will study in detail how classical cannabinoid receptor 1 and 2 (CB1 And CB2), and the endocannabinoid ligands contribute to the pathophysiology of pulmonary fibrosis. 

G-protein couple receptor 55 (GPR55) in neutrophil activation during acute lung injury

PI: Raquel Guillamat Prats

GPR55 has been described by our group that plays a key role in regulating adaptive immune response. This receptor is also highly expressed in neutrophils, that are crucial cells during the first stages of acute lung injury. Our hypothesis is that impaired GPR55 signalling affects neutrophil function enhancing their radical oxygen species production and triggering NETosis.  

The pivotal role of macrophages in lung cancer and pulmonary fibrosis

PI: Paloma Millan / Raquel Guillamat Prats

Pulmonary fibrosis is a risk factor for lung cancer (LC) development. A significant number of patients with pulmonary fibrosis display risk factors also associated with LC. Many multiple mutual genetic, molecular, and cellular processes appear to connect both diseases. We will focus on studying the macrophages phenotype present in the lung during fibrosis, their similarities with tumour-associated macrophages (TAMs) and how they amplify the response during LC promoting tumor growth. We expect to learn a specific transcriptomic fingerprint in macrophages that is associated with a more severe tumour progression.

Role of diet as master of regulating of immune system and its impact in respiratory diseases

PI: Raquel Guillamat Prats

Our daily-diet impacts our immune system and vulnerability to disease. Diet-associate obesity is associated with metabolic, cardiovascular diseases and other non-communicable diseases such as many respiratory diseases. We hypothesize that unbalanced daily nutrition triggers myeloid cell production, promoting overstimulation of the immune system, leading to an overwhelmed response in front of respiratory diseases. We propose for this project an omics-driven approach combined with phenotypic and functional assays to enlighten the links between daily-diet, hematopoiesis, myeloid cell maturation, immune system homeostasis & systemic inflammation and its impact in lung pathologies. 

Active projects

Endocannabinoid system as novel therapeutic target in pulmonary fibrosis

PI: Raquel Guillamat Prats
Funding agency: Instituto de Salud Carlos III (ISCIII)
Agency code: CP20/00133
Start date: 01/03/2021
End date: 28/02/2026

El sistema cannabinoide com a nova diana terapèutica per la fibrosi pulmonar

PI: Raquel Guillamat Prats
Funding agency: Societat Catalana de Pneumologia (SOCAP)
Start date: 01/04/2022
End date: 30/03/2024

Scientific publications

Guillamat-Prats R. The Role of MSC in Wound Healing, Scarring and Regeneration. Cells. 2021 Jul 8;10(7):1729. DOI: 10.3390/cells10071729. PMID: 34359898; PMCID: PMC8305394.

Guillamat-Prats R. Role of Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells in Coagulation. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Sep 8;23(18):10393. DOI: 10.3390/ijms231810393. PMID: 36142297; PMCID: PMC9499599.

Guillamat-Prats R, Hering D, Derle A, Rami M, Härdtner C, Santovito D, Rinne P, Bindila L, Hristov M, Pagano S, Vuilleumier N, Schmid S, Janjic A, Enard W, Weber C, Maegdefessel L, Faussner A, Hilgendorf I, Steffens S. GPR55 in B cells limits atherosclerosis development and regulates plasma cell maturation. Nat Cardiovasc Res. 2022 Nov;1:1056-1071. DOI: 10.1038/s44161-022-00155-0. PMID: 36523570; PMCID: PMC7613934.

See publications Raquel Guillamat Prats


Can Ruti celebra la jornada de enfermedades minoritarias denotando la importancia de la investigación para ayudar a los pacientes

El jueves de la semana pasada, 29 de febrero, se celebró la 'Jornada día internacional enfermedades minoritarias' en la sala de actos del Hospital Germans Trias. Profesionales de la salud e investigadores del Hospital y el IGTP explicaron su trabajo para avanzar en el ámbito de las enfermedades minoritarias. También intervinieron representantes de asociaciones de pacientes de estas enfermedades.

- Conferencias,

Trece de investigadoras del IGTP acercan la ciencia a los estudiantes en la 6a edición de #100tífiques

El pasado 7 de febrero regresó "#100tífiques", en su sexta edición, un macro evento que se ha convertido en un referente reivindicativo para la comunidad de mujeres investigadoras catalanas y también para las escuelas. Ampliando la cifra de participantes del año pasado, trece científicas del IGTP participaron en este acto.

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Raquel Guillamat Prats

(+34) 93 554 30 50 extn: 6540