Supervisor: Felipe Gómez Gómez
Miguel obtained a BSc in Biochemistry at the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM), after which followed a MSc in Microbiology at the same institution. He has participated in research projects in several institutions. He benefited from an internship at the Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences of the University of Copenhagen, and carried out his BSc thesis both at the Spanish Center of Molecular Biology (CBM) and the Institute of Catalysis and Petroleochemistry (ICP), both in Madrid. Following this, he started his MSc thesis at the Spanish Center for Astrobiology (CAB), under Felipe Gomez. During this time, he focused on the development of new protein extraction methods directed to obtaining proteins from the acidic sediments of Río Tinto (a very acidic river and Mars analogue located in southern Spain), a plan in which he was successful.
He is currently working as a PhD candidate at the Department of Planetology and Habitability at CAB, also under Felipe Gomez’s tutelage. He is working on the characterization of the oxidative degradation processes that take place over organic matter in the surface of Mars. To achieve this, he simulates radiation doses similar to those of the Red Planet over regolith simulants that have been previously spiked with organic matter, generally proteins. Through these studies he aims to understand both the protection the martian regolith may offer against radiation damage, and the intrinsic oxidation processes that may take place within it and that can also contribute to the loss of organic signatures.
|Key words||Mars, oxidation, organic preservation, Rio Tinto, transcriptomics|