Previous classes

These are the students from 2015 class

Debanjan Mukherjee
“I have done my Bsc in Biochemistry and Microbiology with Chemistry as Major and m Msc in Biophysics with Physics and Mathematics. So far I have studied the biology of HIV pathogenesis, and the molecules involved in merozoite and ookinete invasion during Plasmodium pathogenesis. Regarding my PhD project: Plasmodium falciparum is the causative agent of the most severe forms of human malaria. This parasite requires two different hosts, humans and mosquitoes, to complete its life cycle. In the life cycle of the malarial parasite Plasmodium there are 3 stages at which the parasite invades host tissues. These are (i) sporozoites invading the liver cells, (ii) merozoites invading the RBC’s and (iii) ookinetes that invade the mosquito midgut epithelium. Having been totally impressed by the mechanism by which these parasites cleverly invade the host tissues to complete its life cycle, I myself imagined as the Plasmodium wanting to complete my scientific life cycle of studying molecules involved in this invasion processes. And having worked with the merozoite stage and the ookinete stage before, the only step left of my journey was to study the liver stage of malaria infection. And that’s why I am here at Prof. Maria Mota’s lab at IMM, studying the biology of hepatic invasion by malarial parasites.”

Emanuel Fernandes
“I came from Anadia, a small city near Aveiro, and I took my degrees at the University of Aveiro. I have a First Degree (B.Sc.) in Biomedical Sciences, and a Master Degree (M.Sc.) in Molecular Biomedicine. Regarding my academic interests, I am passionate about Neurosciences. Therefore, I developed my first research work on molecular neurosciences and Parkinson’s disease. After two years working on molecular neurosciences, plus a brief internship in a Mass Spectrometry Unit, I decided to engage in a new adventure: develop a PhD in electrophysiology and behavior. That will allow me to achieve an integrative perspective of Neurosciences, and use it to dissect several fascinating scientific problems, such as decision-making, memory, and spatial navigation. Outside the lab, I find amusing all sorts of activities that allow me to be in contact with Nature, including walking, running, travelling, and gardening, always in the company of my family, close friends, and a good book or music. Entering to IMM was an excellent choice; I have found awesome colleagues and an environment where fellowship, science, creativity and challenge, are combined to stimulate research. I can only say that I am really enjoying this new challenge!”

Idálio Viegas
“Since I was a kid I really liked to see natural life documentaries and to go to the field observe animals and plants. This interest grew in school when i started to learn biology, after I started to appreciate how complex life organisms are, how complex is a live cell. This is was what really catches my interest and curiosity. I got really interested in the gene expression regulation. I studied Biotechnology at Universidade do Algarve and after Molecular Genetics and Biomedicine at Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Today I am in Instituto de Medicina Molecular (iMM) studying gene expression mechanisms in Trypanosoma brucei, a unicellular eukaryote parasite that causes Human sleeping sickness. I hope that this time in LisbonBioMed at iMM allows me to learn a lot, gain experience and that my curiosity continues to grow, at the same time I expect to pass a very good time in this fantastic city​.”

Margarida Vaz
“Biomedical sciences have always fascinated me. Therefore, I graduated in Clinical Analysis and Public Health and then pursued an MSc in Molecular Biology and Genetics. When the time came to choose a laboratory to develop my MSc thesis, I found at iMM the opportunity to unite biology, medicine and a cutting edge research in an institute of excellence. I was pleasantly surprised, when I joined this institution, to realise that it its members have a spirit of great cooperation and mutual support, and where everyone works towards being an integral part of an outstanding biomedical research centre. For my future, I saw that the LisbonBioMed PhD program entirely met my interests, as it gives students the opportunity to learn from the experience of successful scientists, ensuring that they will hold concepts from the basics to the most innovative ones. Lastly, when attending classes, I had the opportunity to meet amazing people with whom I will share this four year journey. Therefore, I totally encourage anyone who wants to do great research to come to this joyful institution.”

Margherita Fabbri
I’m Margherita, an Italian neurologist. I graduated in Medicine at the University of Bologna (Italy) where I did also my Neurology Residency. During 2013-2014 I did a fellowship at the Movement and Disorder Unit of the Hospital Santa Maria, of Lisbon and I definitively fell in love with the world of the movement disorders and the Deep Brain Stimulation. Thus I decided to apply for the LisbonBioMed PhD at the iMM in order to continue my research on Parkinson’s Disease and Deep Brain Stimulation, living in a beautiful city. It has been a privilege for me being accepted as PhD student at the iMM. I hope I could bring my clinical point of view to iMM and I’m sure I will receive intriguing inputs and I will be in touch with bright researchers. I really would like to open my mind to this new scientific world.

Marie Bordone
“I graduated in Biomedical Sicences at University of Algarve. After that I got my Master’s degree in Biomedical Science that was performed between the University of Algarve and the University of Reading, UK. My master thesis subject was “Characterization of PRKRA and WDR45 gene function, involved in Parkinson’s disease”. Although I really enjoy my experience in UK, I wanted to come back to Portugal and be part of the team of investigators that still fight to maintain science alive in Portugal. So I apply to the LisbonBiomed Program since I knew that iMM was one of the best institutes in Portugal to do research. I was one of the lucky ones who got in. I am so glad to have been selected since the LisbonBiomed Program induces us to all type of research in all type of fields. Besides, all my team mates are amazing and with such different backgrounds that is always interesting to discuss science with them.”

Pedro Barbacena
“I graduated in Biology at University of Lisbon and I soon realized that I really enjoyed being in the lab, being capable to design and answer my own questions. Thus, I continued my studies in the MSc program in Evolutionary and Developmental Biology and during my MSc thesis I studied the role of a Notch ligand in the regulation of spinal cord neurogenesis. Being a biologist, I’ve always believed that modern science requires multidisciplinary approaches in order to understand complex problems and ultimately translate basic science into clinical applications. The LisbonBioMed PhD program was a natural choice for me due to its interdisciplinary program, the tight link to the medical school and the amazing scientific community. So far, it has been very stimulating: we get to know and discuss science with most of iMM’s PIs while being exposed to cutting edge tools and resources. For me, this is the right recipe to embrace a PhD, do science at the highest level and, at the same time, having fun in the beautiful and sunny city of Lisbon, hopefully with a lot of results.”

Pedro Papotto
“Then I caught myself thinking. “What am I doing?”. Unfortunately, it was pointless trying to answer this question. I was already crossing the Atlantic Ocean, coming all the way from São Paulo, Brazil, to Lisbon. Fortunately, I just thought about that on the plane. The idea of working with science was somewhat attractive ever since my days back in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences. In the following years, during my Master in Immunology, I was sure that what I really wanted for my life was to dig deeper into the questions that kept popping out of my mind. However, I felt I needed a different environment. I wanted an interdisciplinary atmosphere, with an active scientific community full of ideas and willing to contribute to my growth as a researcher. This is what I found since I arrived at iMM. Throughout the first eight weeks, my LisbonBioMed colleagues and I were exposed to the different research areas of the institute and introduced to questions from the borders of our current scientific knowledge. And although I wanted to stay in the immunology field for my PhD, I was tempted to change areas several times due to the amazing lectures given by iMM investigators and invited speakers. Such an intense period resulted in the broadening of my perspective about science. And also, lots of fun, a lot of friends and a lot of knowledge! Apart from that, from the first time I set foot in Lisbon, I’ve been greeted with an incredible city. Full of nice people. Inspiring. Culturally rich. (Mostly) Sunny. And with the most amazing viewpoints I’ve been to. Everything you need to make this experience even more amusing!”

Vânia Cardoso
“I have a Biochemistry background. In 2014, I graduated as a Master´s in Health Sciences at University of Minho. During the master’s degree I had the opportunity to extend my knowledge on immune modulation in the field of infectious diseases. After the MSc I developed a strong wish to follow a scientific career in biomedical research. The LisbonBioMed PhD program was exactly what I was looking for, because iMM is an important reference for science in Portugal, with very good facilities and outstanding researchers working in different areas. The PhD program attracted me not only for its scientific subject but also with regard to its concept: providing students, during the first two months, the opportunity to contact with several research groups of excellence from different fields which enable us to gain a broader view of what is being done in the institute and what is still left to answer in the area of Biomedicine. The program structure also help us in deciding where and how we should orientate our PhD. I believe that with this experience I will gain a wider understanding of biomedical research and I hope that here I will get the tools to start a successful and meaningful career in science.”

Vasco Conceição
“I have recently graduated in Biomedical Engineering at Instituto Superior Técnico and Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade Lisboa. I am from Santarém but I have been living in Lisbon in the past years. Non-academic wise, my main interests are travelling and going out with my friends and family, but also to play and watch basketball, football and tennis. Regarding my academic interests, I have always wanted to study phenomena which were not well-understood and to combine knowledge from different areas, reason for which I find neuroscience and, in particular, themes like consciousness and cognition to be extremely fascinating. I have always wanted not only to have fun while doing my job, but also to make sure that my work would strive to contribute to an improvement of people’s quality of life. For this reason, the choice of this PhD program was not a complicated one. The past weeks at Instituto de Medicina Molecular with my awesome colleagues have confirmed that this was indeed a great choice and, at the moment, I can only hope that everyone enjoys this experience as much as I did and (for sure) I will continue to do.”