Where Ideas Grow
Catarina C. Pacheco
Associate Researcher

Catarina C Pacheco graduated in Microbiology by the Catholic University (Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Porto) in 2000. Immediately after, she joined the Cellular and Applied Microbiology group, led by Prof. Pedro Moradas-Ferreira (IBMC), to work in the FP5-funded EU-project BOMBBE that aimed at exploring the potential of methylotrophic bacteria to be used in bioremediation and biotechnology. Subsequently, she was awarded a PhD in Biomedical Sciences working under the supervision of Prof. P Moradas-Ferreira and Dr. Paolo De Marco, presenting the thesis Adaptive response of Escherichia coli K-12 strains to cadmium-induced oxidative stress, at ICBAS in 2009. In the meantime (2008), CC Pacheco became team member in the FP6-funded EU-project BioModularH2, which was pioneer in the synthetic biology field. Within this project, the researcher collaborated in the construction of a photoautotrophic chassis and of synthetic devices primarily designed for H2 production. She was also involved in a FCT-funded project related to the regulation and maturation of cyanobacterial hydrogenases. In the frame of the FP7-funded EU-project Cyanofactory, the researcher worked in the improvement of chassis robustness/ functionality and the development/characterization of SB tools, such as regulatory elements and plasmids. In 2019, CC Pacheco secured an Assistant Researcher position through the highly competitive FCT Program - Scientific Employment Stimulus 1st Edition. The researcher is pursuing the work in the MicroBioSyn group at IBMC/i3S (led by Prof. Paula Tamagnini), and her focus is the engineering of photoautotrophic chassis based on Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 for the production of value-added compounds, such as compatible solutes. These molecules are involved in halotolerance mechanisms and have applications as value-added ingredients for cosmetics and pharmaceutical products. She is currently team member in the EU-project PhotoSynH2. In all the mentioned projects, the researcher has been involved in the supervision of undergraduate (including Erasmus) and master students and is now supervising 1 PhD and 2 MSc students. CC Pacheco published 30 papers in international peer reviewed journals with 700+ citations (h-index 17) and is also author in 4 book chapters, two on Synthetic Biology (ISBN 978-972-757-743-9, ISBN 978-311-055-060-3), one on H2 production using cyanobacterial hydrogenases: from classical to synthetic biology approaches (ISBN-978-94-017-8553-2), and the other on "Cyanobacterial biofilms: formation, distribution and applications" (ISBN-978-0-323-91202-0). She was guest editor in 2 Synthetic Biology special issues in Life journal (ISSN 2075-1729), and is currently member of the editorial board of Life (MDPI) and BMC Biotechnology (Springer Nature) . Since CC Pacheco changed her research focus to cyanobacteria and synthetic biology, she has been actively involved in science dissemination actions, and participated as an invited speaker in events of public communication of science such as Encontro Nacional de Ciência - Ciência 2009 & Ciência 2010. In 2011, the researcher was trainer in the post-graduation course Da Biologia Molecular à Biologia Sintética, and in 2015 was invited speaker in the course Biotecnologia às cores, both meant for high school teachers. She was also part of Embaixadores da Ciência, a group of IBMC/INEB researchers engaged in the dissemination of science in schools. She has also been involved in seminars and workshops for students of the degree in Biology and the masters in Cell and Molecular Biology & in Applications in Biotechnology and Synthetic Biology (Fac of Sciences, UPorto), the integrated master in Bioengineering (Fac of Engineering/ICBAS, UPorto), and in the Doctoral Program in Molecular and Cell Biology (IBMC, ICBAS, Fac of Sciences; UPorto). More recently, she became an Invited Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Sciences (UPorto), teaching synthetic biology and DNA manipulation syllabus.

Selected Publications

Ferreira E.A., Pacheco C.C., Rodrigues J.S., Pinto F., Lamosa P., Fuente D., Urchueguía J., Tamagnini P.,
Heterologous Production of Glycine Betaine Using Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803-Based Chassis Lacking Native Compatible Solutes. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology9:, 2022. [Journal: Article] [CI: 1] [IF: 5,7]
DOI: 10.3389/fbioe.2021.821075 SCOPUS: 85123170286.

Mascia F., Pereira S.B., Pacheco C.C., Oliveira P., Solarczek J., Schallmey A., Kourist R., Alphand V., Tamagnini P.,
Light-driven hydroxylation of testosterone by Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 expressing the heterologous CYP450 monooxygenase CYP110D1. Green Chemistry24(16):6156-6167, 2022. [Journal: Article] [CI: 7] [IF: 9,8]
DOI: 10.1039/d1gc04714k SCOPUS: 85137827924.

Lima S., Matinha-Cardoso J., Giner-Lamia J., Couto N., Pacheco C.C., Florencio F.J., Wright P.C., Tamagnini P., Oliveira P.,
Extracellular vesicles as an alternative copper-secretion mechanism in bacteria. Journal of Hazardous Materials431:, 2022. [Journal: Article] [CI: 11] [IF: 13,6]
DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2022.128594 SCOPUS: 85125668871.

Pacheco C.C., Ferreira E.A., Oliveira P., Tamagnini P.,
Synthetic biology of cyanobacteria. The Autotrophic Biorefinery: Raw Materials from Biotechnology:131-172, 2021. [Book: Book Chapter] [CI: 3]
DOI: 10.1515/9783110550603-006 SCOPUS: 85123197221.

Santos M., Pacheco C.C., Yao L., Hudson E.P., Tamagnini P.,
Crispri as a tool to repress multiple copies of extracellular polymeric substances (Eps)-related genes in the cyanobacterium synechocystis sp. pcc 6803. Life11(11):, 2021. [Journal: Article] [CI: 6] [IF: 3,3]
DOI: 10.3390/life11111198 SCOPUS: 85119015407.

Nagy C., Thiel K., Mulaku E., Mustila H., Tamagnini P., Aro E.M., Pacheco C.C., Kallio P.,
Comparison of alternative integration sites in the chromosome and the native plasmids of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 in respect to expression efficiency and copy number. Microbial Cell Factories20(1):, 2021. [Journal: Article] [CI: 14] [IF: 6,4]
DOI: 10.1186/s12934-021-01622-2 SCOPUS: 85110239699.

Lindblad P., Fuente D., Borbe F., Cicchi B., Conejero J.A., Couto N., Celešnik H., Diano M.M., Dolinar M., Esposito S., Evans C., Ferreira E.A., Keller J., Khanna N., Kind G., Landels A., Lemus L., Noirel J., Ocklenburg S., Oliveira P., Pacheco C.C., Parker J.L., Pereira J., Pham T.K., Pinto F., Rexroth S., Rögner M., Schmitz H.J., Benavides A.M.S., Siurana M., Tamagnini P., Touloupakis E., Torzillo G., Urchueguía J.F., Wegelius A., Wiegand K., Wright P.C., Wutschel M., Wünschiers R.,
CyanoFactory, a European consortium to develop technologies needed to advance cyanobacteria as chassis for production of chemicals and fuels. Algal Research41:, 2019. [Journal: Review] [CI: 24] [IF: 4]
DOI: 10.1016/j.algal.2019.101510 SCOPUS: 85065805375.

Ferreira E.A., Pacheco C.C., Pinto F., Pereira J., Lamosa P., Oliveira P., Kirov B., Jaramillo A., Tamagnini P.,
Expanding the toolbox for Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803: Validation of replicative vectors and characterization of a novel set of promoters. Synthetic Biology3(1):, 2018. [Journal: Article] [CI: 41]
DOI: 10.1093/synbio/ysy014 SCOPUS: 85091655430.

Pinto F., Pacheco C.C., Oliveira P., Montagud A., Landels A., Couto N., Wright P.C., Urchueguía J.F., Tamagnini P.,
Improving a Synechocystis-based photoautotrophic chassis through systematic genome mapping and validation of neutral sites. DNA Research22(6):425-437, 2015. [Journal: Article] [CI: 39] [IF: 5,3]
DOI: 10.1093/dnares/dsv024 SCOPUS: 84950258160.

Pinto F., Pacheco C.C., Ferreira D., Moradas-Ferreira P., Tamagnini P.,
Selection of suitable reference genes for RT-qPCR analyses in cyanobacteria. PLoS ONE7(4):, 2012. [Journal: Article] [CI: 120] [IF: 3,7]
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0034983 SCOPUS: 84859347775.