Paula I. Moreira
+351 239 820 190
Assistant Professor FMUC
Group at CNC

Paula I. Moreira obtained her licentiate degree in Biology (1998), MSc degree in Cell Biology (2002) and PhD degree in Biomedical Sciences (2007) from University of Coimbra, Portugal. Currently, she is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Medicine and is the leader of the Cell Metabolism and Quality Control Group at the Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology, University of Coimbra. This Group aims to unveil the involvement of mitochondria, inflammation and quality control systems in age-related neurodegenerative pathologies, namely Alzheimer´s and Parkinson´s diseases as well as in other age-related diseases such as osteoarthritis. The mechanisms underlying aging- and diabetes-associated central and peripheral damage, as well as their role as risk factors for several diseases are also studied. Paula Moreira has authored more than 160 scientific peer-reviewed articles (Scopus h-index: 43; citations > 8700; Web of Science h-index: 40; citations > 7100), and is on the editorial board of over 6 scientific journals. Moreira is/was the principal investigator of several projects funded by national and international funding agencies such as the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology, European Foundation for the Study of Diabetes and Alzheimer’s Association. She currently (co)supervises 7 Postdocs, 2 PhD students and 3 MSc students and completed the supervision of 4 PhD and 6 MSc theses. She won the Stimulus to Research prize, in 2003, supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and, in 2008, the L’Oréal for Women in Science Award supported by L'Oreal Portugal/UNESCO/ FCT.



Area of Research: 

We are interested in elucidating the role of mitochondria (energy, homeostasis and signals), insulin signaling and quality control mechanisms, namely autophagy/mitophagy, in brain alterations that occur in diabetes and age-related neurodegenerative diseases, particularly Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The influence of gender on the molecular mechanisms underlying aging-related changes in the diabetic brain is another goal of our group. We also aim to clarify the potential (neuro)protective role of antidiabetic agents and mitochondrial modulators in the aforesaid pathological conditions.

Research Summary:
Selected Publications: 

Carvalho C, Santos MS, Oliveira CR, Moreira PI. Alzheimer's disease and type 2 diabetes-related alterations in brain mitochondria, autophagy and synaptic markers. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2015 Aug;1852(8):1665-75. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2015.05.001. (FI – 4,882)

Cardoso S, Santos RX, Correia SC, Carvalho C, Santos MS, Baldeiras I, Oliveira CR, Moreira PI. Insulin-induced recurrent hypoglycemia exacerbates diabetic brain mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative imbalance. Neurobiol Dis. 2013 Jan;49:1-12. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2012.08.008. (FI – 5,202)

Carvalho C, Cardoso S, Correia SC, Santos RX, Santos MS, Baldeiras I, Oliveira CR, Moreira PI. Metabolic alterations induced by sucrose intake and Alzheimer's disease promote similar brain mitochondrial abnormalities. Diabetes. 2012 May;61(5):1234-42. doi: 10.2337/db11-1186. (FI – 7,895)

Correia SC, Santos RX, Cardoso SM, Santos MS, Oliveira CR, Moreira PI. Cyanide preconditioning protects brain endothelial and NT2 neuron-like cells against glucotoxicity: role of mitochondrial reactive oxygen species and HIF-1α. Neurobiol Dis. 2012 Jan;45(1):206-18. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2011.08.005. (FI – 5,624)

Moreira PI, Santos MS, Moreno AM, Seiça R, Oliveira CR. Increased vulnerability of brain mitochondria in diabetic (Goto-Kakizaki) rats with aging and amyloid-beta exposure. Diabetes. 2003 Jun;52(6):1449-56. (FI – 8,298)

Other information: 
Financiado por Fundos FEDER através do Programa Operacional Factores de Competitividade – COMPETE 2020 e por Fundos Nacionais através da FCT – Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia no âmbito do projecto Estratégico com referência atribuida pelo COMPETE: POCI-01-0145-FEDER-007440

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