Marine Biotechnology | - CCMAR -

Marine Biotechnology

Short Title 

The Marine Biotechnology research group is currently ongoing active research in different fields of microalgal biotechnology, as well as in the exploitation of different marine organisms as sources of novel bioactive compounds.




The Marine Biotechnology research group is currently ongoing active research in different fields of microalgal biotechnology, as well as in the exploitation of different marine organisms as sources of novel bioactive compounds. In addition, the group uses structure-based design for lead optimisation with the final goal of obtaining novel drugs to fight human and animal disease.


The MarBiotech research group is focused on the following interrelated research lines:

- Algae biofuels.

- Molecular basis of carotenoid biosynthesis in microalgae.

- Isolation of carotenoid- and lipid-hyperproducing microalgal strains.

- LEDs for microalgal production.

- Marine innovative feeds and functional foods.

- Marine bioactive compounds.

- Drug lead development and optimisation.


All Publications
Pereira CGuerreiro, Barreira L, Bijttebier S, et al. Chemical profiling of infusions and decoctions of Helichrysum italicum subsp. picardii by UHPLC-PDA-MS and in vitro biological activities comparatively with green tea (Camellia sinensis) and rooibos tisane (Aspalathus linearis). Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis. 2017;145. doi:10.1016/j.jpba.2017.07.007
Rodrigues MJoão, Neves V, Martins A, et al. In vitro antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of Limonium algarvense flowers' infusions and decoctions: A comparison with green tea (Camellia sinensis). Food Chem. 2016;200:322-9. doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2016.01.048
Custódio L, Laukaityte S, Engelen AH, et al. A comparative evaluation of biological activities and bioactive compounds of the seagrasses Zostera marina and Zostera noltei from southern Portugal. Natural Product Research. 2016;30(6):724 - 728. doi:10.1080/14786419.2015.1040791
Oliveira M, Junior PAdemar Sal, Rodrigues MJoão, et al. Unlocking the in vitro anti-Trypanosoma cruzi activity of halophyte plants from the southern Portugal. Asian Pac J Trop Med. 2016;9(8):735-41. doi:10.1016/j.apjtm.2016.06.015
Ismael A, Henriques MSC, Marques C, et al. Exploring saccharinate-tetrazoles as selective Cu(. RSC Adv. 2016;6(75):71628 - 71637. doi:10.1039/C6RA15051A
Pereira H, Custódio L, Rodrigues MJ, et al. Profiling of antioxidant potential and phytoconstituents of Plantago coronopus. Brazilian Journal of Biology. 2016;(ahead). doi:10.1590/1519-6984.02416
Grosso C, Cardoso ALúcia, Lemos A, et al. Novel approach to bis(indolyl)methanes: de novo synthesis of 1-hydroxyiminomethyl derivatives with anti-cancer properties. Eur J Med Chem. 2015;93:9-15. doi:10.1016/j.ejmech.2015.01.050
Vizetto-Duarte C, Pereira H, de Sousa CBruno, et al. Fatty acid profile of different species of algae of the Cystoseira genus: a nutraceutical perspective. Nat Prod Res. 2015;29(13):1264-70. doi:10.1080/14786419.2014.992343
Pereira H, Custódio L, Rodrigues MJoão, et al. Biological Activities and Chemical Composition of Methanolic Extracts of Selected Autochthonous Microalgae Strains from the Red Sea. Mar Drugs. 2015;13(6):3531-49. doi:10.3390/md13063531
Rodrigues MJoão, Gangadhar KN, Vizetto-Duarte C, et al. Maritime halophyte species from southern Portugal as sources of bioactive molecules. Mar Drugs. 2014;12(4):2228-44. doi:10.3390/md12042228
Hernandez-Molina FJ, Stow DAV, Alvarez-Zarikian CA, et al. Onset of Mediterranean outflow into the North Atlantic. Science. 2014;344(6189):1244 - 1250. doi:10.1126/science.1251306
Schulze PSC, Barreira L, Pereira H, Perales JA, Varela J. Light emitting diodes (LEDs) applied to microalgal production. Trends Biotechnol. 2014;32(8):422-30. doi:10.1016/j.tibtech.2014.06.001
Martins DAlves, Custódio L, Barreira L, et al. Alternative sources of n-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in marine microalgae. Mar Drugs. 2013;11(7):2259-81. doi:10.3390/md11072259
Maria VL, Gomes T, Barreira L, Bebianno MJ. Impact of benzo(a)pyrene, Cu and their mixture on the proteomic response of Mytilus galloprovincialis. Aquat Toxicol. 2013;144-145:284-95. doi:10.1016/j.aquatox.2013.10.009
Hernández-Prieto MA, Schön V, Georg J, et al. Iron deprivation in Synechocystis: inference of pathways, non-coding RNAs, and regulatory elements from comprehensive expression profiling. G3 (Bethesda). 2012;2(12):1475-95. doi:10.1534/g3.112.003863
Pereira H, Barreira L, Figueiredo F, et al. Polyunsaturated Fatty acids of marine macroalgae: potential for nutritional and pharmaceutical applications. Mar Drugs. 2012;10(9):1920-35. doi:10.3390/md10091920
Pereira H, Barreira L, Mozes A, et al. Microplate-based high throughput screening procedure for the isolation of lipid-rich marine microalgae. Biotechnol Biofuels. 2011;4(1):61. doi:10.1186/1754-6834-4-61
Ramos AA, Marques AR, Rodrigues M, et al. Molecular and functional characterization of a cDNA encoding 4-hydroxy-3-methylbut-2-enyl diphosphate reductase from Dunaliella salina. J Plant Physiol. 2009;166(9):968-77. doi:10.1016/j.jplph.2008.11.008
Ramos AA, Varela J. Biochemistry and molecular biology in Portugal: an overview of past and current contributions. IUBMB Life. 2008;60(5):265-9. doi:10.1002/iub.65
Ramos AA, Coesel S, Marques A, et al. Isolation and characterization of a stress-inducible Dunaliella salina Lcy-beta gene encoding a functional lycopene beta-cyclase. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2008;79(5):819-28. doi:10.1007/s00253-008-1492-4
Coesel SNicole, Baumgartner ACordeiro, Teles LMarlene, et al. Nutrient limitation is the main regulatory factor for carotenoid accumulation and for Psy and Pds steady state transcript levels in Dunaliella salina (Chlorophyta) exposed to high light and salt stress. Mar Biotechnol (NY). 2008;10(5):602-11. doi:10.1007/s10126-008-9100-2
Title Coordinator Time frame Funding CCMAR All
SEAWEED Anaerobic Digestion of Seaweed for Biofuels João Varela 09/01/2011 to 08/31/2013 Comissão Europeia 211.19k€
CYANO Regulação da homeostase do ferro em cianobactérias João Varela 01/01/2010 to 06/30/2013 FCT 42.62k€
BOTRYOFUEL Microalgas hiperprodutoras de hidrocarbonetos João Varela 07/01/2007 to 06/30/2008 AdI - Agência de Inovação 12.31k€
Type of Event 
Other Events
Our PhD candidate Hugo Pereira will defend his thesis, next wednesday.
July 17, 2019
Anfiteatro Verde, Edf 8
Type of Event 
May 22, 2019 | 13:30 | Room 2.31 I Building 7 I Campus Gambelas
May 22, 2019
Room 2.31 I Building 7 I Gambelas Campus
Type of Event 
December 13th, at 1:30 pm on Amph.C (CP).
December 13, 2017
Anf.C (CP) - Gambelas Campus UAlg
Type of Event 
Luísa Barreira will talk about an extreme gourmet project that joins plants and cuisine. Don't miss this seminar!
June 14, 2017
Anf. B (CP) - Gambelas Campus UAlg
5th June 2017 Organization: CCMAR Location: Room 2.31 A - bdg 7 - Universidade do Algarve - Campus de Gambelas (limited places)
June 5, 2016 to June 5, 2017
Room 2.31 A - bdg 7 - CCMAR - Universidade do Algarve - Campus de Gambelas (Faro)
O projeto chama-se ALGARED+ e o Centro de Ciências do Mar (CCMAR) é um dos membros do consórcio luso-espanhol de nove instituições que é responsável pelo projeto, que faz parte do Programa (POCTEP) Cooperação Transfronteiriça...
Chloé Placines is joining Marine Biotechnology group. Welcome Chloé!
Ana Grenha receives her Tech2Market honorable mention (photo credits: UAlg Communication Department)
Ana Grenha, Maria Clara Costa and Luisa Custódio have received honorable mentions at the Tech2Market contest promoted by the University of the Algarve. We talked with the researchers to find out more about their technologies and...
Etiele Morais will join Marbiotech group as a Junior Researcher at the GreenTreat project.
Ricardo Cerqueira joined the GreenTreat project as an MSc student to characterize and track down the evolution of bacteria-microalgae consortia.
Gabriel Bombo will join the MarBiotech group as an MSc student to do his thesis about two microalgae strains collected in different regions of Algarve's coast.