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Microbiology and Immunology

Research Projects

PTDC/SAU-INF/28466/2017 - Polyphasic validation of antimicrobial peptides as alternative treatment for diabetic foot infections”. PI: Manuela Oliveira (FMV-UL). Partners: IMM/FM/UL. FCT funding: 239.655.75 € (2018-2021).

PTDC/BTM-SAL/32085/2017 - Development of a novel class of antibody-drug conjugates molecules for cancer treatment. PI: Frederico Aires da Silva (FMV-UL). Partners: IMM/FM/UL, IST-ITN-UL, FF-UL. FCT funding: 239.638,46 € (2018-2021).

PGG/015/2016 - Development of bispecific antibodies against gp120/gp41 for treatment of HIV-1 infection. PI: Frederico Aires da Silva (FMV-UL). Gilead GÉNESE Funding: 21000 €. (2016-2018).

PTDC/BBBBIO/0508/2014 - Overcoming the Brain Drug Delivery Bottleneck: Development of single domain antibodies for brain targeting and drug delivery across the Blood-Brain Barrier. PI: Frederico Aires da Silva (FMV-UL). Partners: IMM/FM/UL, IST-ITN-UL, TechnoPhage SA. FCT funding 192.320,00 €. (2016-2019).

IF/010101/2013 - Overcoming the Brain Drug Delivery Bottleneck: Development of highly specific Blood-Brain Barrier transmigrating single domain antibodies. Project under the FCT Investigator Programme – Starting grants – F. Aires da Silva - (2014-2019).

 Neuropharmaceutics are the largest potential growth sector of the pharmaceutical industry. Drug discovery and development, however, have experienced difficulty developing Central Nervous System (C NS) diseases biopharmaceuticals that can complete clinical trials and win regulatory approval. This is especially true for drugs that address major unmet needs in the CNS area such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, stroke, brain cancers, and metastases to the brain. A major bottleneck in successful development of CNS drugs is the discovery or design of drugs that can cross the blood brain barrier (BBB). The promising potential of rabbit derived single domains antibodies (sdAbs) for therapeutic applications has been documented in our previously studies. Therefore, the aim of this project is to explore the properties of rabbit sdAbs to develop improved and highly specific BBB transmigrating antibodies.

RECI/AAG-GLO/0470/2012 - Cetaceans as marine ecosystem health sentinels. PI: Catarina Eira (Univ Aveiro), Partners: Univ de Aveiro, Univ do Minho, Sociedade Portuguesa de Vida Selvagem, and “Coordinadora para o Estudio dos Mamiferos Mariños (CEMMA). FCT Funding 497,948 €. (2013 – 2015).

Marine mammals are key animal groups acting as sentinels of disturbances of marine environments, reflecting health and status of lower trophic levels. Therefore, identification and sanitary monitoring of sentinel species such as marine mammals provide a relevant approach for both population and environmental surveillance. The aim of this project targets the assessment of cetacean population status and health of coastal cetacean species from the Iberian Atlantic basin by i) identification of viral infection through a molecular virological survey and ii) the investigation of the expression patterns of relevant immunological mediators in cetaceans for identification of a physiological baseline and correct assessment of animal health status. .

PTDC/SAU-MIC/122816/2010 - Biofilms in diabetic foot: microbial virulence characterization and cross-talk of major isolates. Partners: CESEM, IMM/FM/UL. PI: Luis Tavares (FMV-ULisboa), FCT Funding 100,755 €. (2012 – 2015).

The diabetic foot is one of the most feared complications of Diabetes mellitus. Although ischemic and neuropathic changes have the initial pathophysiological role, it is the infection by multiresistant microorganisms and the local unfavorable microenvironmental conditions to the action of antibiotics that leads to amputation. This project aims to perform: (a) genetic typing of Staphylocococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates, (b) the assessment of biofilm expression by these two species isolates and the characterization of their QS system, (c) the phenotypic and genotypic evaluation of the antimicrobial resistance patterns, and (c) testing the susceptibility of biofilm-enclosed bacterial communities to bacteriophage F44/10.

PTDC/CVT-EPI/4651/2012 - Unraveling the host specificity within Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. dysgalactiae. PI: Ilda Sanches (FFCT/FCT/UNL), Partners: FFCT/FCT/UNL. FCT Funding 119,832 €. (2013 – 2016).


PTDC/CVT-EPI/3460/2012 - Let´s make them fall: A genomic, proteomic and immuno-histologic approach on the involution of tick aggregation cement. PILuis Alfaro Cardoso (IICT/CIISA) Partners: BIOCANT, CIISA/FMV/UL, IHMT/UNL, Pro-INSA. FCT Funding 163,759 €. (2013 – 2014).

Participation of Lab team member on the project. See Tropical Animal Prod. Lab. projects.

PTDC/CVT/120122/2010 - Modulation of rumen biohydrogenation through poly-unsaturated fatty acid overload and tannins. PIRui Bessa (FMV-ULisboa), Partners: (ICETA-Porto/REQUIMTE/ UP). FCT Funding 164,943 €. (2012-2015).

Participation of Lab team member on the project. See Animal Prod. Systems Lab. projects.

PTDC/CVT/118566/2010 - Regulatory immune response in dogs with leishmaniosis at various clinical stages and undergoing different therapeutic protocols. PI: Isabel Pereira da Fonseca (FMV/ULisboa) Partners: IHMT/UNL, IGC. FCT Funding 146,267 €. (2012-2015).

Participation of Lab team member on the project. See Parasitology and Parasitic Diseases Lab projects.