SUAT Universidad Complutense Madrid

The SUAT team is a group dedicated to the Viral Immunology and Preventive Medicine Service at the VISAVET Health Surveillance Centre belonging to the Complutense University of Madrid

Main researches are focused in the diagnosis of animal viruses and epidemiological analyses of disease risk of introduction, risk of spread and early detection. Important scientific publications reinforce theses researches on different diseases such as Foot-and-Mouth Disease, West Nile, Avian Influenza, African Swine Fever, Classical Swine Fever, African Horse Sickness, Bluetongue, etc. And several collaborations were carried out jointly along these works with different partnerships such as OIE, FAO, OIRSA, DG SANCO, EFSA, etc.

In addition, SUAT team is the Reference Laboratory for the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) for African Swine Fever and African Horse Sickness. 


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Professor José Manuel Sánchez-Vizcaíno

José Manuel Sánchez-Vizcaíno - Sanidad Animal

José Manuel Sánchez-Vizcaíno Rodríguez was born in Murcia in 1951. He received his Licentiate and PhD at the Veterinary Faculty of the Universidad Complutense. Subsequently, he conducted his post-graduate studies in animal immunology and virology at Cornell University in New York. Upon returning to Spain he joined the National Institute of Agricultural and Food Research (INIA, Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Agrarias y Alimentarias) performing the following functions: Researcher (1978-1980), Chief of Research Projects (1980-1985), Chief of the Animal Virology Department (1985-1988), Chief of the Animal Health Department (1988-1993) and Chief of the Animal Health Research Center (CISA, Centro de Investigacion en Sanidad Animal) (1993-2002).

Since the year 2002 he has been a Professor of Animal Health at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, carrying out his teaching and research in the Department of Animal Health at the Veterinary Faculty.

The Scientific contributions of Professor Sanchez-Vizcaino have notably contributed to the control and eradication of various animal diseases, among them the African Swine Fever, African Horse Sickness and Classical Swine Disease. All that thanks to the development of new methods and fast and sensitive diagnostic reagents, new epidemiologic strategies as well as the development of new vaccines. 

He has more than 200 research publications in high international impact journals. He is the author of various chapters in books with international prestige (African Swine Fever and Diseases of Swine, African Horse Sickness in the OIE Terrestrial Manual, Trends in Emerging Viral Infections of Swine…) and digital courses dedicated to immunology and infectious diseases as well as sanitary simulations. He has directed a great number of research projects and 32 doctoral theses about infectious animals’ diseases. He has participated in 70 R&D contracts, in several patents and has contributed to more than 500 congresses, conferences, workshops and interviews (TV, radio, press, video, web) around the world.

He obtained the National Swine Research Prize ANAPORC in 1990, the International Swine Prize “PORCO BRAVO in 1999”, the First Prize on Swine Health and Production (Producción Animal 2000), the Animal Health Prize 2007 “Los mejores de La Verdad 2007” and the Prize Albéitar 2012 in the Scientific Category, in recognition of his contribution to the scientific development of the research in Veterinary Science.

Dr. Sánchez-Vizcaíno has been awarded with the “Encomienda de Numero de la Orden del Merito Agrario” (03/12/99) and with the “Encomienda de Numero de la Orden del Merito Alimentario”) (05/05/03), as well as "Cruz del Mérito Militar con distintivo blanco" (03/01/03) for his contributions in animal health and in controlling infectious diseases,  with the CESFAC Medal (05/27/09), for his merit in animal nutrition and animal health in the category Research and Development, as well as recognized as an Academic of Honor by the Veterinary Academy of the Region of Murcia (06/04/2014) and SEPOR Gold Award in Research in 2018

He was awarded with the Merit Medal from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), as international recognition to his outstanding services to veterinary science (24/5/09), and has been awarded Doctor “Honoris Causa” by the University of Murcia (22/04/10); furthermore he has been nominated “2013 George C. Poppensiek Visiting Professor in Global Animal Health” by the Cornell University (09/2013).

Since 1990 Professor Sánchez-Vizcaíno has collaborated with the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) and with the FAO in various health missions for controlling infectious diseases and for technological transference in several European countries, in America and Africa. He has participated in many national and international scientific commissions, such as

  • OIE expert on African Swine Disease (1991 to present).
  • Member of the National Committee of the Health Alert System (2001-2006).
  • Assessing Scientific Committee of the Public Health Institute of the Madrid Community (2002-2005).
  • Scientific Committee of the animal health and wellness commission of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) (2003-2006).
  • Scientific Committee of the Spanish Agency of Food Safety (AESA) (2003-2008).
  • President of the National Association of Scientific Pig Industry (ANAPORC) (2000-2008).
  • Member of the European Union Community Veterinary Emergency Team (2009).
  • President and board member of the European Society of Veterinary Virology (ESVV) (2012 to present).
  • Member of the Scientific Committee of the Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale della Sicilia (IZS Sicilia) (2015 to present).

His current scientific interest is centered in the study of animal infectious diseases and particularly in the development of new diagnostic techniques and new strategies for its control by means of analyzing the risk and development of epidemiologic models as well as establishing networks for sanitary monitoring,  Currently the most important project he coordinates is the European VACDIVA, call "H2020-SFS-2019-1, theme: A vaccine against African Swine Fever" endowed with 10 million Euros.

PhD researchers

José Ángel Barasona

José Ángel BarasonaE-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Profiles: OrcID     ResearchGate     Scholar     Scopus

He was born in Cordoba in 1986. Graduated in Veterinary Medicine from the University of Cordoba in 2009. In 2010 he obtained the Master Degree in Game Research by the University of Castilla-La Mancha (UCLM), where he joined the Health and Biotechnology unit (SaBio Group) of the Research Institute in Hunting Resources (IREC) as pre-doctoral researcher in University Teacher Training (FPU-MECD).

In 2015 he obtained the PhD with International Mention for his thesis entitled "Epidemiology and prevention in the sanitary interaction between domestic and wild ungulates" by the UCLM. Since then he has enjoyed four postdoctoral contracts through competitive calls, both in Spain and France (“Juan de la Cierva-Formación”, COST, Martín Escudero, “Juan de la Cierva-Incorporación”). He recently joined the Unit of Preventive Medicine and Viral Immunology (SUAT Group) of the Centre for Veterinary Health Surveillance (VISAVET) and the Department of Animal Health of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Complutense University of Madrid (UCM), through the European Project VacDIVA.


 More information

Its line of research focuses on understanding and controlling shared infections affecting wildlife, domestic animals, humans and the environment. To this end, he combines in a multidisciplinary way tools of ecology (GIS, telemetry, unmanned aerial systems, proximity loggers) and veterinary sciences (pathology, diagnosis, environmental microbiology, epidemiology and preventive medicine) among different hosts of these shared infections ("One Health" approach) to design, evaluate and offer tools for their prevention and control. These include viral, bacterial and parasitic diseases, with special emphasis on tuberculosis and African swine fever (ASF), and as the main species of study, the wild boar (Sus scrofa). This is the species on which Jose Ángel has focused his scientific efforts for the last 10 years.

His main scientific-technical achievements include the identification of the sanitary interface between wild ungulates and extensive livestock in Mediterranean scenarios, to determine (i) the mechanisms of maintenance and transmission of several infectious pathogens (ASF virus, Mycobacterium bovis, porcine circovirus, Aujeszky's disease virus, PRRS virus, Escherichia coli, Hepatitis E virus, among others), (ii) wild boar mortality and population dynamics, and (iii) knowledge about intra- and interspecific contacts for the development of biosecurity programmes with concrete and specific management measures for each farm. In addition, he has successfully addressed different strategies for oral vaccination of wild boar against tuberculosis and ASF. He is currently working on the latter achievement within the framework of the VacDIVA project, as the researcher responsible for clinical trials in wild boar against ASF.

Jose Angel is the author of more than 45 articles in international scientific journals (SCI), 32 informative publications or scientific-technical documents, 6 book chapters and more than 80 presentations to congresses (70% international). He has participated in 21 R+D projects financed in competitive calls and in 8 contracts with the Public Administration and/or companies. He is associate editor for the journal Frontiers in Veterinary Science, evaluator of the Scientific Committee of Game Research of the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) and member of the Spanish Society for the Conservation and Study of Mammals (SECEM) and the Wildlife Disease Association (WDA).


Jaime Bosch

DES (E. Science) by the University of Seville in 2007, and Master´s Degree in Quantitative Methods of Research in Epidemiology (UAM). He defended PhD at the University Complutense of Madrid (UCM) in 2016. He worked as a researcher in the National Spanish Animal Health Research Centre (CISA-INIA) in the Epidemiology and Environmental Health Department.

His research was focused on the application the species distribution models in the epidemiology of many infectious diseases in which the wild species plays an important role as reservoir and host. Chiefly concerned the role of wildlife in the transmission and maintenance of diseases shared with domestic animals and the interactions in the wildlife-livestock interface (using holistic multidisciplinary approaches such as:  spatial ecology, species distribution models, landscape connectivity models and the simulation of ecological processes). During his PhD, he applied the distribution models for the wild boar applicable to the management, not only for ASF, but also for other diseases shared between domestic pigs and wild boars, to identify scenarios with disease transmission risk in the boar-pig interface.

Currently, he has joined the UCM research team (Department of Animal Health; SUAT-VISAVET), and he is focusing on the spatial eco-epidemiology for modeling and analyzing disease risk spread and improving prevention, control, and surveillance programs for diseases shared between wildlife, livestock, and the environment, which have a great impact on animal and human health.

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Sandra Barroso Arévalo

Sandra Barroso Arévalo

She graduated with a Degree in Veterinary Science from the Complutense University of Madrid in 2014. She joined the SUAT team in 2015 and started her Doctoral studies with a scholarship for The Training of University Teachers from the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sport.

Her thesis focused on the main aspects involved in colony losses of honey bees (Apis mellifera). In 2019, she obtained the International Doctorate mention for his Ph.D. thesis.

Currently, she is working at the SUAT team as a postdoctoral researcher in the African swine fever investigation line. Her research interests are now focused on the host immune response to viral infection, molecular diagnosis, and cell culture adaptation. 

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Satoshi Ito

Dr. Satoshi graduated from Rakuno Gakuen University, Hokkaido, Japan in 2016 with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) and the PhD in Veterinary Medicine from Hokkaido University in 2020. During his PhD study, he participated with the SUAT team for a year to complete his PhD study on “Risk assessment of transboundary swine diseases in Japan”.

Current, his research interests are mainly focusing on veterinary epidemiology. Specially, he works on spatio-temporal epidemiology and risk assessment of transboundary swine diseases in Asia. He joined the SUAT team as a postdoctoral researcher in October 2020.

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Cecilia Aguilar Vega

Cecilia Aguilar Vega

Graduated with degree in Veterinary Medicine from the University Complutense of Madrid (2011-2016). Cecilia joined the SUAT team in September 2016 and was an intern with us during the last two years of her studies.

Her field of research focuses on the molecular study of the bluetongue virus, in addition to the spatial epidemiological analysis of the disease.

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PhD students

Ignacio Vargas Castro 

Ignacio Vargas CastroHe has a degree in Veterinary Medicine at the Complutense University of Madrid (2012-2018). He participated as an intern in the SUAT group for three years and then joined our working group in September 2018.

His field of research focuses on the molecular and epidemiological study of viruses of marine mammals.

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Aleksandra Kosowska

Aleksandra Kosowska

She received a Bachelor's degree in Veterinary Medicine from Complutense University of Madrid (2014-2019). In the last courses of her degree, she participated with the SUAT team in several vaccination studies against African Swine Fever. She joined our SUAT team in September 2019.

Her activity is focused on vaccination studies against ASF virus.

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Carolina Muñoz Pérez

Carolina Muñoz Pérez

Graduated with degree in Veterinary Medicine from the University Complutense of Madrid (2014-2019). Carolina participated as an intern in the SUAT group during the last year of the degree and she joined our team in September 2019. 
Her field of research focuses on the epidemiology of African Swine Fever in different epidemiological scenarios. 

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Laboratory Technicians

Rocío Sánchez García

She was born in Madrid in 1984. She finished her Superior Technical Laboratory studies in 2004. She did her internship in the General Hospital Nr. 12 in October.

In 2005 she received the Finnova scholarship at the laboratories for infectious diseases in the Department of Animal Health.

In July 2006 she joined the team of Professor Jose Manuel Sanchez-Vizcaino working in the diagnosis of infectious diseases in bees and swine as well as general maintenance of the laboratory, cellular growth techniques and molecular techniques (PCR, electrophoresis, etc….)

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Débora López

Débora López

Was born in Madrid in 1987. In 2012 finished her studies as Pathological Anatomy and Cytology Technician, doing an internship at the National Cardiovascular Research Centre (CNIC). Later on she got the degree of Técnico de Laboratorio de Diagnóstico Clínico, doing an intership at Principe de Asturias Hospital, where she also worked as anatomy technician.

She worked as Laboratory technician at Multidisciplinary Institute, at the CAI of brain mapping and as autopsy technician at Forensic Anatomical Institute of Madrid for several years.

In January 2020 she joined the group of Prof- José Manuel Sánchez Vizcaíno, working on animals (pigs) care and keeping and at the laboratory (extraction of leucocyte and the development of new bait for wild pigs).

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External Collaborators

  • Marisa Arias (Centro de Investigación en Sanidad Animal, CISA-INIA, España)
  • Deborah Kukielka Zunzunegui (Universidad San Pablo CEU, Madrid) 
  • Sándor Bélak (Universidad de Uppsala, Suecia)
  • Fernando Boinas (Facultad de Veterinaria de Lisboa, Portugal)
  • Fernando Esperón (Centro de Investigación en Sanidad Animal, CISA-INIA, España)
  • Francesco Feliziani (IZS de la Umbria, Italia)
  • Antonio Fernández (Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, España)
  • Daniel García Párraga ( L'Oceanogràfic de Valencia, España)
  • José Carlos Gómez-Villamandos (Universidad de Córdoba, España)
  • Christian Gortazar (IREC - Univ. Castilla la Mancha)
  • Frank Koenen (Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Center, CODA-CERVA-VAR, Bélgica)
  • Alberto Laddomada (IZS de la Sardenia, Italia)
  • Javier Lucientes (Universidad de Zaragoza, España)
  • Gian Mario de Mia (IZS de la Umbria, Italia)
  • Luis Martín Otero (Relab, Madrid, España)
  • Beatriz Martínez López (University of California, Davis. EEUU) 
  • Carlos Martins (Universidad de Lisboa, Portugal)
  • Miguel Ángel Miranda (Universidad Illes Balears, España)
  • Jorge Moreno (Universidad de Uppsala, Suecia)
  • Carlos Pérez (Centro Nacional de Supercomputación, BSC, España)
  • Andrés M. Pérez (Universidad de Davis, USA)
  • Dirk Pfeiffer (Royal College of Veterinary Medicine, United Kingdom)
  • Francisco Puerta (Centro Apícola Andaluz, Universidad de Córdoba, España)
  • Polly Roy (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicne, United Kingdom)
  • Pedro José Sánchez-Cordón (Universidad de Córdoba, España)
  • Ana de la Torre (Centro de Investigación en Sanidad Animal, CISA-INIA, España)
  • Alfonso Torres (Universidad de Cornell, USA)
  • Raquel Vargas Álvarez (Horizcience Projects)
  • Stephan Zientara (French Agency for food Safety, AFSSA, Francia)
  • Jeffrey Zimmeman (Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa, USA)


and always will be... 

Fernando Esperón Fernando

2002 -
Susana Cámara Susana

1/2002 - 12/2005
Belén Rivera Arroyo Belén
Rivera Arroyo

2004 - 2022
Beatriz Martinez Lopez Beatriz
Martínez López

1/2005 - 12/2011
Belén Rodríguez Belén

3/2006 - 2/2010
Deborah Kukielka Deborah
Kukielka Zunzunegui

2/2007 - 12/2012
Raquel Vargas Álvarez Raquel
Vargas Álvarez

6/2007 - 12/2016
Mª Carmen Bulboa Mª Carmen

1/2008 - 1/2011
Xiaoyu  Guo Guo

2/2008 - 7/2009
Ana Cristina Pérez de Diego Ana Cristina
Pérez de Diego

9/2008 - 7/2012
Facundo Linares Facundo

11/2008 - 9/2013
Victor Rodriguez Prieto Víctor
Rodríguez Prieto

9/2009 - 10/2014
Almudena Sánchez Matamoros Almudena Sánchez Matamoros
9/2009 - 2/2015
Lina Mur Gil Lina
Mur Gil

9/2009 - 10/2014
Marina Vicente Rubiano Marina
Vicente Rubiano

10/2009 - 1/2016
Consuelo Rubio Guerri Consuelo
Rubio Guerri

9/2010 - 12/2015
Ana Isabel de las Heras Ana Isabel
de las Heras

9/2010 - 1/2012
Mar Melero Asensio Mar
Melero Asensio

9/2010 - 6/2017
Fernando Sánchez-Vizcaíno Fernando

1/2011 - 4/2013
Elvira Nieto Pelegrín Elvira
Nieto Pelegrín

5/2013 - 12/2015
Eduardo Fernández Carrión Eduardo
Fernández Carrión

1/2014 - 11/2018
Cristina Jurado Díaz Cristina
Jurado Díaz

1/2014 - 11/2019
Marta Martínez Avilés Marta
Martínez Avilés

10/2005 - 5/2020
Estefanía Cadenas Fernández Estefanía
Cadenas Fernández

5/2018 - 11/2021
Lidia Sánchez Morales Lidia
Sánchez Morales

9/2020 - 2/2022