creating a
healthier future
Catarina Leite Pereira

Catarina got her PhD in Biomedical Sciences (ICBAS/UP) in 2017 and is currently an Associate Researcher at the Nanomedicine at the Translational Drug Delivery Group, Instituto de Investigação e Inovação em Saúde (I3S), were she leads a team on advanced modelling of musculoskeletal pediatric tumors. Currently she coordinates two projects on the development of a bioengineered 3D model of osteosarcoma, aiming at providing a tool to unravel tumor development, the metastatic process and to screen in a biologically relevant setting novel therapies and targeted nanomedicines. 

Catarina has been working in the biomedical engineering field for 15 years, being involved in multiple projects in the area of nanotechnology, immunomodulation, musculoskeletal disorders and disease in vitro modelling. She has participated in 10 international and national projects during her career (DISC REGENERATION, RESTORE, GENEGUT, DUO-DIO, EUROSPINE, among others). She has vast national/international network of collaborators from academia (i3S (other research groups), University of Oulu, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, and industry (FINNADVANCE, React4Life). Through her scientific path, Catarina has published 33 articles, displaying a h-index of 18 (source: scopus). She has participated in multiple dissemination actions (>30 participations) both in national and international conferences, building up her reputation and recognition by her peers, as can be perceived by the high number of citations (>800) and invitations to act as an expert panel reviewer for international funding agencies, examiner, lecturer, invited speaker and integration of scientific and PhD Advisory committees. Catarina has supervised 4 trainees (BSc), 3 master students (one ongoing) and is currently supervising 3 PhD students. Her responsibility towards the scientific endeavor has not been restricted to research, she actively participates in public awareness actions for science dissemination in primary and secondary schools and exhibitions to general population. 

Catarina has contributed to secure funding of the Liga Portuguesa Contra o Cancro (15K euros) and FCT (50k euros) as Principal Investigator (PI), from Gilead Genese Program (35K euros) as co-PI and from the European Commission (H2020 RESTORE (5.4M Euros) and HORIZON-HLTH-2021-TOOL-06 GENEGUT (4.9M Euros) as a team member. Catarina has been recently elected SPLC-CRS Board Director (2024-2026) and is the vice-chair of the Nanotechnologies for Regenerative Medicine Working group of ETPN (European Technology Platform of Nanomedicines).

ONGOING Projects :

  • MICKEY (50k€) – RESTART FCT (2023-2025)
  • B2Tek-4OS (15k€) - Liga Portuguesa Contra o Cantro – Bolsas em Sarcomas Pediatricos Nôno


Research Team:

  • Sofia Costa, MSc – Research Assistant (2024-)
  • Sofia Dias (2021-2025), FCT PhD Fellow, MSc – PhD Candidate, PhD in Biomedical Sciences ICBAS/UP
  • Diogo Horta (2020-2024), FCT PhD Fellow – PhD Candidate, PhD in Neurosciences FMUP
  • Carolina Vieira, Research trainee (2024), Integrated Master in Bioengineering, ICBAS/FEUP


Alumni Team members:

  • Sofia Costa (2022-2023), Master in Biotechnology Applications and Synthetic biology, FCUP
  • João Rodrigues (2020-2021), Integrated Master in Bioengineering, ICBAS/FEUP
  • Rui Almeida: (2017-2018), Integrated Master in Bioengineering, ICBAS/FEUP (Grade 18)
  • Renata Basto, Research trainee (2018), Integrated Master in Bioengineering, ICBAS/FEUP
  • Maria Leonor Correia (2018), Integrated Master in Bioengineering, ICBAS/FEUP
  • Rui Almeida (2017) Integrated Master in Bioengineering, ICBAS/FEUP

Selected Publications

Jiang W., Hou F., Gu Y., Saiding Q., Bao P., Tang J., Wu L., Chen C., Shen C., Pereira C.L., Sarmento M., Sarmento B., Cui W., Chen L.,
Local bone metabolism balance regulation via double-adhesive hydrogel for fixing orthopedic implants. Bioactive Materials12:169-184, 2022. [Journal: Article] [CI: 6] [IF: 18,9]
DOI: 10.1016/j.bioactmat.2021.10.017 SCOPUS: 85120688144.

Baião A., Dias S., Soares A.F., Pereira C.L., Oliveira C., Sarmento B.,
Advances in the use of 3D colorectal cancer models for novel drug discovery. Expert Opinion on Drug Discovery17(6):569-580, 2022. [Journal: Review] [CI: 3] [IF: 6,3]
DOI: 10.1080/17460441.2022.2056162 SCOPUS: 85127337473.

Leite Pereira C., Lamghari M., Sarmento B.,
Advances in nanoenabled 3D matrices for cartilage repair. Acta Biomaterialia150:1-21, 2022. [Journal: Review] [CI: 4] [IF: 9,7]
DOI: 10.1016/j.actbio.2022.07.033 SCOPUS: 85137035782.

Neto E., Monteiro A.C., Leite Pereira C., Simões M., Conde J.P., Chu V., Sarmento B., Lamghari M.,
Micropathological Chip Modeling the Neurovascular Unit Response to Inflammatory Bone Condition. Advanced Healthcare Materials11(11):, 2022. [Journal: Article] [CI: 9] [IF: 10]
DOI: 10.1002/adhm.202102305 SCOPUS: 85125234828.

Castro F., Martins C., Silveira M.J., Moura R.P., Pereira C.L., Sarmento B.,
Advances on erythrocyte-mimicking nanovehicles to overcome barriers in biological microenvironments. Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews170:312-339, 2021. [Journal: Review] [CI: 34] [IF: 17,9]
DOI: 10.1016/j.addr.2020.09.001 SCOPUS: 85091211887.

Castro F., Leite Pereira C., Helena Macedo M., Almeida A., José Silveira M., Dias S., Patrícia Cardoso A., José Oliveira M., Sarmento B.,
Advances on colorectal cancer 3D models: The needed translational technology for nanomedicine screening. Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews175:, 2021. [Journal: Review] [CI: 27] [IF: 17,9]
DOI: 10.1016/j.addr.2021.06.001 SCOPUS: 85108070633.

Castro F., Pinto M.L., Pereira C.L., Serre K., Barbosa M.A., Vermaelen K., Gärtner F., Gonçalves R.M., De Wever O., Oliveira M.J.,
Chitosan/γ-PGA nanoparticles-based immunotherapy as adjuvant to radiotherapy in breast cancer. Biomaterials257:, 2020. [Journal: Article] [CI: 57] [IF: 12,5]
DOI: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2020.120218 SCOPUS: 85088642097.

Teixeira J.H., Pereira C.L., Almeida M.I., Teixeira G.Q., Gonçalves R.M., Barbosa M.A., Santos S.G.,
Articular Repair/Regeneration in Healthy and Inflammatory Conditions: From Advanced In Vitro to In Vivo Models. Advanced Functional Materials30(44):, 2020. [Journal: Review] [CI: 7] [IF: 18,8]
DOI: 10.1002/adfm.201909523 SCOPUS: 85081533594.

Xu Y., Gu Y., Cai F., Xi K., Xin T., Tang J., Wu L., Wang Z., Wang F., Deng L., Pereira C.L., Sarmento B., Cui W., Chen L.,
Metabolism Balance Regulation via Antagonist-Functionalized Injectable Microsphere for Nucleus Pulposus Regeneration. Advanced Functional Materials30(52):, 2020. [Journal: Article] [CI: 53] [IF: 18,8]
DOI: 10.1002/adfm.202006333 SCOPUS: 85091482692.

Castro F., Pinto M.L., Almeida R., Pereira F., Silva A.M., Pereira C.L., Santos S.G., Barbosa M.A., Gonçalves R.M., Oliveira M.J.,
Chitosan/poly(γ-glutamic acid) nanoparticles incorporating IFN-γ for immune response modulation in the context of colorectal cancer. Biomaterials Science7(8):3386-3403, 2019. [Journal: Article] [CI: 32] [IF: 6,2]
DOI: 10.1039/c9bm00393b SCOPUS: 85069760890.