Where Ideas grow
Cristina Barrias
Host Interaction & Response Program vice-coordinator

Cristina Barrias graduated in Chemical Engineering at the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto (FEUP, 1997), and got her PhD in Engineering Sciences, in the field of Biomaterials & Regenerative Medicine (UP, 2005). Her PhD studies were performed at INEB-Instituto de Engenharia Biomédica and at IBMC-Instituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular. During her PhD, she was a visiting researcher at INSERM U443 (University of Bordeaux, France). She carried out her postdoc at INEB/IBMC in collaboration with the University of Nevada-Reno, USA.

Since 2017, she is Principal Investigator at i3S/INEB and invited Associate Professor at Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas Abel Salazar (ICBAS, UP). She is the leader of the Bioengineered 3D Microenvironments Group of i3S. Her group focuses on the design of tunable hydrogels to promote controlled 3D cell  assembly into microtissues akin to native tissues. The key goal is to recapitulate tissue-specific morphogenesis to study how cells sense their microenvironment and dissect the underlying roles of biochemical/biomechanical cues on cellular behavior. Ultimately, the aim is to translate this knowledge into the design of advanced 3D in vitro models and effective injectable cell therapies for tissue vascularization.

Selected Publications

Torres A.L., Bidarra S.J., Pinto M.T., Aguiar P.C., Silva E.A., Barrias C.C.,
Guiding morphogenesis in cell-instructive microgels for therapeutic angiogenesis. Biomaterials154:34-47, 2018. [Journal: Article] [CI: 24] [IF: 10,3]
DOI: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2017.10.051 SCOPUS: 85032820887.


Bauman E., Feijão T., Carvalho D.T.O., Granja P.L., Barrias C.C.,
Xeno-free pre-vascularized spheroids for therapeutic applications. Scientific Reports8(1):, 2018. [Journal: Article] [CI: 13] [IF: 4]
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-017-18431-6 SCOPUS: 85040445656.


Pereira R.F., Barrias C.C., Bártolo P.J., Granja P.L.,
Cell-instructive pectin hydrogels crosslinked via thiol-norbornene photo-click chemistry for skin tissue engineering. Acta Biomaterialia66:282-293, 2018. [Journal: Article] [CI: 51] [IF: 6,6]
DOI: 10.1016/j.actbio.2017.11.016 SCOPUS: 85034850058.


Bidarra S.J., Oliveira P., Rocha S., Saraiva D.P., Oliveira C., Barrias C.C.,
A 3D in vitro model to explore the inter-conversion between epithelial and mesenchymal states during EMT and its reversion. Scientific Reports6:, 2016. [Journal: Article] [CI: 32] [IF: 4,3]
DOI: 10.1038/srep27072 SCOPUS: 84973343030.


Maia F.R., Fonseca K.B., Rodrigues G., Granja P.L., Barrias C.C.,
Matrix-driven formation of mesenchymal stem cell-extracellular matrix microtissues on soft alginate hydrogels. Acta Biomaterialia10(7):3197-3208, 2014. [Journal: Article] [CI: 51] [IF: 6]
DOI: 10.1016/j.actbio.2014.02.049 SCOPUS: 84901785690.


Maia F.R., Barbosa M., Gomes D.B., Vale N., Gomes P., Granja P.L., Barrias C.C.,
Hydrogel depots for local co-delivery of osteoinductive peptides and mesenchymal stem cells. Journal of Controlled Release189:158-168, 2014. [Journal: Article] [CI: 37] [IF: 7,7]
DOI: 10.1016/j.jconrel.2014.06.030 SCOPUS: 84904318888.


Fonseca K.B., Gomes D.B., Lee K., Santos S.G., Sousa A., Silva E.A., Mooney D.J., Granja P.L., Barrias C.C.,
Injectable MMP-sensitive alginate hydrogels as hMSC delivery systems. Biomacromolecules15(1):380-390, 2014. [Journal: Article] [CI: 66] [IF: 5,8]
DOI: 10.1021/bm4016495 SCOPUS: 84892606344.


Fonseca K.B., Granja P.L., Barrias C.C.,
Engineering proteolytically-degradable artificial extracellular matrices. Progress in Polymer Science39(12):2010-2029, 2014. [Journal: Review] [CI: 34] [IF: 26,9]
DOI: 10.1016/j.progpolymsci.2014.07.003 SCOPUS: 84910642434.


Fonseca K.B., Bidarra S.J., Oliveira M.J., Granja P.L., Barrias C.C.,
Molecularly designed alginate hydrogels susceptible to local proteolysis as three-dimensional cellular microenvironments. Acta Biomaterialia7(4):1674-1682, 2011. [Journal: Article] [CI: 101] [IF: 4,9]
DOI: 10.1016/j.actbio.2010.12.029 SCOPUS: 79952189303.


Bidarra S.J., Barrias C.C., Fonseca K.B., Barbosa M.A., Soares R.A., Granja P.L.,
Injectable in situ crosslinkable RGD-modified alginate matrix for endothelial cells delivery. Biomaterials32(31):7897-7904, 2011. [Journal: Article] [CI: 106] [IF: 7,4]
DOI: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2011.07.013 SCOPUS: 80051827430.