Luísa Custódio, 42 years old, graduated in Agronomy in 1999 from the University of Algarve (Portugal). In 2006 she completed a PhD in Biological Sciences (Plant Biotechnology). Between 2006 and 2009 she had a PostDoctoral scholarship from Foundation for Science and Technology, FCT (Chemical characterization of natural compounds in carob and study of its anti-microbial and chemopreventive activities). In 2009 she joined the Marine Biotechnology group of Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR, University of Algarve) and started, along with J. Varela (group leader) and L. Barreira (Assistant Professor) a new line of research: bioactive compounds of marine origin. In July 2013 she was hired as an assistant researcher in the FCT researcher contest. It is currently responsible for the PharmaBlue research line (Biologically active natural products from marine organisms and halophytes) of the MarBiotech group. In this reaserch line Luísa C. is engaged in the research of bioactive compounds in macro and micro-algae, seagrass, halophytes and marine invertebrates. Among the bioactivities studied are antioxidant, antitumor, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, neuroprotective, antiparasitic and immunostimulant. In addition, it is involved in the determining of the nutritional status of different edible marine organisms. Luísa C. is involved in several international collaboration, for example with Dr. Fernando Albericio (Institute for Research in Biomedicine, Barcelona and University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa): isolation and identification of bioactive compounds of marine origin; Dr. Rosa Alemany (Clinical/Hospital School of Medicine, University of Barcelona): elucidation of the antitumor mechanisms of action of natural compounds; Dr. Amelia Rauter (Foundation of the Faculty of Science, University of Lisbon): isolation of natural compounds; Dr. Alvaro Romanha (Centro de Pesquisas René Rachou-FIOCRUZ, Belo Horizonte, Brazil): identification of natural products with anti-parasitic activity and Dr. Haroon Hamed (COMSATS, Institute of Information Technology, Department of Bioscience, Islamabad, Pakistan): scientific validation of ethnopharmacological use of medicinal plants of Pakistan. Over the past five years Luísa C. was the principal investigator of the following R&D projects funded by FCT: SEABIOMED (PTDC/MAR/103957/2008), XtremeBio (PTDC/MAR-EST/4346/2012) and MaNaCruzi (bilateral project, FCT/CAPES 2358, 2014/2015), supervised 12 master's and 12 bachelor degrees. Currently she supervises 3 PhD students: 'Unvravelling the biological activities of halophytes species of the Algarve coast' (Maria João Rodrigues da Silva), 'Chemical and biological characterization of halophytes with ethnopharmacological use of the Algarve coast' (Catarina Pereira, SFRH/BD/94407/2013) and ‘Unlocking the potential of halophyte plants from extreme maritime environments as sources of innovative products for use in veterinary parasitology (Marta Oliveira, SFRH/BF/123658/2016). In total, she has aprox. 50 communications (oral or poster) in national and/or international conferences and published 57 articles in scientific journals.
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 Espanha-Portugal.
Ana Grenha, Maria Clara Costa e Luísa Custódio receberam menções honrosas no concurso Tech2Market promovido pela Universidade do Algarve. Fomos falar com as investigadoras para saber mais sobre as suas tecnologias e futuras prospectivas.
No âmbito do Ciência para Negócios, o CCMAR recebeu uma delegação da Portugal Ventures em 7 de dezembro de 2018.
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