Miguel Manzanares obtained his degree in Biology from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM) in 1988, and his PhD from the same university in 1993. During his PhD studies in the group of Rafael Garesse (Department of Biochemistry, UAM), he compared the genetic mechanisms of embryonic segmentation in crustaceans and insects. He subsequently worked for six years in Robb Krumlauf’s group at the National Institute of Medical Research (MRC) in London, where he investigated the role of Hox genes in the patterning of the vertebrate nervous system, as well as studying the evolution of the neural crest. On his return to Madrid, Miguel joined Ángela Nieto’s group at the Instituto Cajal (CSIC), where he worked on the role of Snail genes in the patterning and evolution of the neural crest. In 2001, he established his own research group at the Instituto de Investigaciones Biomédicas (CSIC-UAM), devoted to the study of evolutionary novelties and the functional analysis of genome regulation and evolution. He was elected member of the EMBO-YIP programme in 2003, and joined the CNIC in 2007 where he is presently Full Professor. His current interests are to understand how genome activity is regulated and how it contributes to embryonic development and human disease. Running projects in the lab are aimed to search for and identify distal acting cis-regulatory sequences, and elucidate how they act on their target genes. Research in his group also involves the study of the 3D structure of the chromatin and the gene regulatory networks underlying specific biological states. This is achieved by using a combination of bioinformatics, structural genomics, genome-wide analysis, CRISPR genome editing, and functional assays in transgenic animal models and stem cells.