Institut de Recerca

Sant Pau Research Institute
Sant Pau Research Institute
Sant Pau Research Institute
The Sant Pau Research Institute was established on June 4, 1992, as a scientific foundation with the goal of advancing biomedical and health sciences basic, clinical, epidemiological, and health services research. Its objective is to contribute to the improvement of health and quality of life through the production and dissemination of scientific knowledge, the education and training of globally recognized researchers, the generation of health innovations, the application of advances in healthcare practice, and health policy.

Located at the Sant Pau Health Campus, it is an excellent biomedical research center affiliated with the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) since 2009 and has been part of the CERCA system of Catalonia since 2011.

The Institute consists of its own and affiliated personnel, conducting research in multidisciplinary groups in basic and clinical research. This structure has led to its recognition as a high-level health research center focused on developing new techniques and processes through health innovation since 2011.

The Board of Trustees, the highest governing body of the Institute's Management Foundation, is composed of the Management Foundation of Sant Pau Hospital, the Private Foundation of the Santa Creu i Sant Pau Hospital, the Government of Catalonia, and the Autonomous University of Barcelona.

The Institute facilitates the dissemination of research findings into clinical practice, channels the demands and needs of the scientific community, and guarantees equity in the distribution of resources to researchers (spaces, personnel, material resources, etc.). It has been part of the CERCA system of Catalonia since 2011. Currently, the Institute is one of the most active Catalan centers in the production of research papers, especially in translational research and the integration of new discoveries into clinical practice.


The 9 institutions that form part of the Sant Pau Research Institute are:

  • Management Foundation of the Santa Creu i Sant Pau Hospital
  • Research Institute Foundation of the Santa Creu i Sant Pau Hospital
  • Private Foundation of Santa Creu i Sant Pau Hospital
  • Autonomous University of Barcelona.
  • Puigvert Foundation.
  • Blood and Tissue Bank.
  • Ibero-American Cochrane Centre.
  • Primary Care Team Sardenya, SLP.
  • Public Health Agency of Barcelona.


These are natural allies that, due to proximity and history, have jointly conducted research or collaborated in other scientific areas. Their integration into the IR Sant Pau represents a significant qualitative leap to promote translational research, bridging the gap between basic and clinical research.


The research building, inaugurated on November 15, 2018, was built within the Sant Pau Health Campus, fostering continuous interaction among researchers, both basic and clinical. It spans 9,681 m2 across five floors with modern facilities dedicated to research. Conceived and designed with high environmental and functional criteria, it is primarily constructed with prefabricated, modular, and easily recyclable materials.


In June 2020, the Sant Pau Research Institute building achieved LEED GOLD certification from the U.S. Green Building Council, identifying the building as an example of energy efficiency and sustainability, both in its construction and throughout its lifespan. This certification demonstrates the institution's leadership in energy rationality and the transition toward more sustainable construction.





The incorporation of new technologies facilitating molecular profiling and gene regulation has led to innovative research on heart diseases and other cardiovascular pathologies such as arrhythmias, aortic aneurysms, vascular diseases, thrombosis, etc. The diverse groups in this area provide a broad perspective on ongoing research, whether testing the effectiveness of new markers (such as research on the metabolic and genetic bases of cardiovascular diseases) or developing short-term therapeutic applications. Before the final translation to humans, many advances in this area are validated in animal models, including small and large mammals (pigs).

Research Groups:

• Clinical and Translational Cardiology

• Genomics of Complex Diseases

• Thrombosis and Haemostasis

• Pathophysiology of lipid-related disease

• Cardiovascular Biochemistry

• Molecular Pathology and Therapeutic of Ischaemic and Atherothrombotic Diseases

• Biomarkers for Cardiovascular Disease

• Regulation of Cardiac Rhythm and Contraction

• Lipids and Cardiovascular Pathology

• Regulatory Mechanisms of Cardiovascular Remodelling



This area encompasses research on neurological disorders, mental health, and neurological development. These include stroke, neuromuscular diseases, neurodegenerative diseases, schizophrenia, depression, and chronic pain. A variety of neuroscience techniques are used. Some groups work on the genetic basis of neurological diseases, biomarker identification, neuroimaging, neurosurgical methods, deep brain stimulation, or omics sciences, while others focus on pain models, synaptic biology, or neuropharmacology. This area analyzes large patient population cohorts with clinical follow-up and conducts numerous clinical trials.

Research Groups:

• Molecular Neurodegeneration

• Epilèpsia

• Stroke Pharmacogenomics and Genetics

• Genetic Diseases

• Cerebrovascular Diseases

• Neurosurgery

• Neuromuscular Diseases

• Parkinson Disease and Movement Disorders

• Molecular Neuropharmacology

• Pharmacological Research in Humans

• Mental Health

• Neurobiology of Dementia

• Molecular Physiology of the Synapse



In this area, a wide range of cancer research is conducted, particularly in head and neck cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, endometrial cancer, sarcomas, and colorectal and hematological cancers. Research spans various fields, from genetic research on cancer predisposition syndromes to advanced therapies such as targeted drug administration with nanoparticles, preclinical development of new antitumor agents in mice with specific disease models, CAR-T cell immunotherapy, gene therapy, drug repositioning, and predictive molecular markers. Next-generation sequencing is used to identify new prognostic or responsive factors, and a large number of clinical trials are conducted by our clinical researchers, including Phase I, II, and III trials with new antitumor drugs.

Research Groups:

• Cancer predisposition and DNA repair syndromes

• Clinical Oncology

• Oncogenesis and Antitumour Drugs

• Haematological Diagnosis

• Molecular Pathology of Gynaecologic Cancer

• Clinical Research in Transfusion Medicine

• Otorhinolaringology and Head and Neck Cancer

• Gynecologic and Peritoneal Oncology

• Oncology/Haematology and Transplantation



Sant Pau Hospital is a tertiary and university hospital of high complexity that, together with the Puigvert Foundation, covers all medical specialties. This complexity leads to a wide variety of translational biomedical research to improve patient care in various fields, including inflammatory or immunological processes and factors related to the immune system, osteoporosis, nephrology, surgery, age-related macular degeneration, infectious and microbiological diseases, diabetes, pituitary disease, and other endocrine system diseases, respiratory diseases, or research in perinatal health, as well as clinical approaches based on human tissues and cells. The main objective of this area is evidence-based translational medicine and the improvement of patient care.

Research Groups:

• Women and Perinatal Health

• Regenerative Medicine & Tissue Bioengineering

• General and Digestive Surgery

• Inflammatory Diseases

• Nephrology

• Endocrinology, Diabetes and Nutrition

• Pituitary Gland Disorders

• Digestive Diseases

• Microbiology and Infectious Diseases

• Multi-organ Damage and Rheumatology

• Chronic Respiratory Diseases (GREC)




Research in this area focuses on the study of population health and its social, political, and environmental determinants, with particular attention to inequalities and their consequences. It evaluates the effectiveness and impact on health of public policies and interventions, as well as the promotion of evidence-based practical medicine to make health interventions more effective, appropriate, and safe. The development and evaluation of methods or strategies to improve the generation, evaluation, communication, and transfer of scientific evidence are also essential. In this area, the epidemiology of communicable diseases in the population of Barcelona is also studied, with special attention to the impact of prevention and control strategies developed. The objective of this area is to achieve public health well-being through the improvement of policies and medical management.

Research Groups:

• Clinical Epidemiology and Healthcare Services

• Evaluation of Public Health Policies and Programmes

• Urban Health Inequalities

• Transmissible Diseases

• Primary Care Research



This section includes research groups from the Institute of Research Sant Pau and the Puigvert Foundation that have not yet been accredited by the External Scientific Committee of the Institute.

Research Groups:

• Emerging Processes in Prevalent Diseases

• Radiophysics and Radioprotection

• Pediatrics

• Ophthalmology

• Intensive Medicine

• Nuclear Medicine

• Pharmacy

• Dermatology

• Anaesthesiology

• Research Group in HIV and AIDS

• Plastic Surgery

• Palliative Care

• Andrology

• Urology

• Radiation Oncology

• Locomotor System Research

• Pain and Neurosciences

• Nursing Care Research

• Reproductive Health

• Cardiac Surgery




Sant Pau Research Institute