Joaquin Madrenas

Academic title(s): 

Chief Scientific Officer, Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center & Adjunct Professor at McGill University

Contact Information

Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center
Martin Building, Room 254
1124 West Carson Street
Torrance, CA 90502
Telephone: 310-974-9583 Cell: 310-483-4050

Email address: 
joaquin.madrenas [at]
joaquin.madrenas [at]
Adjunct Members
Graduate supervision: 



Dr. Joaquín (Quim) Madrenas is the Chief Scientific Officer at LA Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. Previously, he was a Full Professor, Tier I Canada Research Chair in Human Immunology, and Chairman of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at McGill University, as well as Founding Director of the Microbiome and Disease Tolerance Centre (MDTC) at McGill and Executive Director of the Canadian CIHR Human Immunology Network (CHIN).

Dr. Madrenas received an M.D. degree at the University of Barcelona, specialized in Nephrology and Transplantation at the University Autonoma of Barcelona, obtained a M.Sc. degree in Experimental Medicine under Dr. John B. Dossetor, and a Ph.D. degree in Immunology under Dr. Phillip Halloran at the University of Alberta. He was a visiting associate with Dr. Ronald Germain at the NIH (Bethesda, MD, USA). He was the founding Director of the FOCIS Centre for Clinical Immunology and Immunotherapeutics in London, ON, the first FOCIS Centre of Excellence in Canada.

Dr. Madrenas’ seminal contributions to Immunology and Medicine are illustrated in his more than 160 book chapters and publications in high profile journals including Science, Nature Medicine, Nature Immunology, Immunity, Journal of Experimental Medicine, Lancet, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Science USA. Among his discoveries are the different signalling patterns through the T cell antigen receptor, the mechanisms of CTLA-4 signalling, and identification of novel mechanisms of pathobiosis by Staphylococcus aureus. For his research, he has received numerous awards including a Canada Foundation for Innovation Researcher Award, a Premier’s Research Excellence Award, a Canada Research Chair, an Ontario Distinguished Researcher Award, The John B. Dossetor Mission Award in Research from The Kidney Foundation of Canada, the UWO Dean’s Award of Excellence in Research and UWO Faculty Scholar Award. In 2011, Dr. Madrenas was inducted as a Fellow to the Canadian
Academy of Health Sciences.

Professor Madrenas is also an active teacher of Immunology, having received the Schulich Leader Excellence Award in Undergraduate Medical Education, four UWO Hippocratic Council Basic Science Teaching Awards, and being included in the Who’s Who in Medical Sciences Education. He has also served as associate editor of several high profile journals, and has extensive experience as a reviewer for national and international agencies and institutional boards. Professor Madrenas is actively engaged in public education and community outreach in Science and History as illustrated by his recent engagement as a TEDx Montreal speaker.

Research in the Madrenas lab is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

Current research: 
  • Mechanisms of Disease Tolerance to Pathobionts, with particular interest on Staph. aureus and its superantigens
  • Novel mechanisms that regulate T cell activation
Selected publications: