creating a
healthier future
Nuno Alves
Group leader

Nuno L. Alves graduated in Biology from the University of Porto (2000). He obtained his Ph.D. in Immunology at the Academical Medical Center, Faculty of Medicine, University of Amsterdam (2001-2007) under the support of fellowship from the GABBA PhD program. Next, he initiated an EMBO Postdoctoral Long-Term fellowship at the Institut Pasteur in Paris (2007-2010). During his PhD and Post-Doctoral periods, I studied the role of the cytokines Interleukin 7 (IL-7) and IL-15 in the function of T cells.

In 2010, he moved to the IBMC in Porto as a Principal Investigator sponsored by the Ciência 2008 program. Since 2014, Nuno Alves holds the position of Group Leader at IBMC/i3S in 2014, initially with the support of an individual Investigator Development grant and currently with Scientific Employment Stimulus grant both from FCT. Since then, his research has been focusing on the thymus, the generative organ for T-cell production. In particular, the group has been studying the differentiation of thymic epithelial cells (TEC), which play a prominent role in T-cell development and in the establishment of immune tolerance. He has been the coordinator of several national and international research grants.  


Besides his activities as a researcher, he has been responsible for teaching Immunology to under graduated (Uni Algarve) and post-graduated (Uni. Porto) and he has participated as examiner in several Master and Ph.D. thesis in Portugal and abroad. Moreover, he regular acts as reviewer for several important Immunology-related scientific journals and Funding Agencies. Lastly, acted as Vice-President (2018-2021) and treasurer (2015-2018) of the Portuguese Society of Immunology (SPI) and as Scientific Coordinator of the HIR research program, which contains 38 groups at i3S .

Selected Publications

Rodrigues P.M., Sousa L.G., Perrod C., Maceiras A.R., Ferreirinha P., Pombinho R., Romera-Cárdenas G., Gomez-Lazaro M., Senkara M., Pistolic J., Cabanes D., Klein L., Saftig P., Alves N.L.,
LAMP2 regulates autophagy in the thymic epithelium and thymic stroma-dependent CD4 T cell development. Autophagy19(2):426-439, 2023. [Journal: Article] [CI: 8] [IF: 13,3 (*)]
DOI: 10.1080/15548627.2022.2074105 SCOPUS: 85130879833.


Rodrigues P.M., Ribeiro A.R., Perrod C., Landry J.J.M., Araújo L., Pereira-Castro I., Benes V., Moreira A., Xavier-Ferreira H., Meireles C., Alves N.L.,
Thymic epithelial cells require p53 to support their long-term function in thymopoiesis in mice. Blood130(4):478-488, 2017. [Journal: Article] [CI: 27] [IF: 15,1]
DOI: 10.1182/blood-2016-12-758961 SCOPUS: 85026293874.


Rodrigues P.M., Peterson P., Alves N.L.,
Setting Up the Perimeter of Tolerance: Insights into mTEC Physiology. Trends in Immunology39(1):2-5, 2018. [Journal: Short Survey] [CI: 9] [IF: 13]
DOI: 10.1016/j.it.2017.11.001 SCOPUS: 85035084214.


Rodrigues P.M., Ribeiro A.R., Serafini N., Meireles C., Di Santo J.P., Alves N.L.,
Intrathymic deletion of IL-7 reveals a contribution of the bone marrow to thymic rebound induced by androgen blockade. Journal of Immunology200(4):1389-1398, 2018. [Journal: Article] [CI: 8] [IF: 4,7]
DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.1701112 SCOPUS: 85044784393.


Ferreirinha P., Ribeiro C., Morimoto J., Landry J.J.M., Matsumoto M., Meireles C., White A.J., Ohigashi I., Araújo L., Benes V., Takahama Y., Anderson G., Matsumoto M., Alves N.L.,
A novel method to identify Post-Aire stages of medullary thymic epithelial cell differentiation. European Journal of Immunology51(2):311-318, 2021. [Journal: Article] [CI: 7] [IF: 6,7]
DOI: 10.1002/eji.202048764 SCOPUS: 85090990353.


Ribeiro A.R., Meireles C., Rodrigues P.M., Alves N.L.,
Intermediate expression of CCRL1 reveals novel subpopulations of medullary thymic epithelial cells that emerge in the postnatal thymus. European Journal of Immunology44(10):2918-2924, 2014. [Journal: Article] [CI: 28] [IF: 4]
DOI: 10.1002/eji.201444585 SCOPUS: 84925298291.


Ribeiro A.R., Rodrigues P.M., Meireles C., Di Santo J.P., Alves N.L.,
Thymocyte selection regulates the homeostasis of IL-7-expressing thymic cortical epithelial cells in vivo. Journal of Immunology191(3):1200-1209, 2013. [Journal: Article] [CI: 72] [IF: 5,4]
DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.1203042 SCOPUS: 84880685834.


Alves N.L., Goff O.R.L., Huntington N.D., Sousa A.P., Ribeiro V.S.G., Bordack A., Vives F.L., Peduto L., Chidgey A., Cumano A., Boyd R., Eberl G., Di Santo J.P.,
Characterization of the thymic IL-7 niche in vivo. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America106(5):1512-1517, 2009. [Journal: Article] [CI: 117] [IF: 9,4]
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0809559106 SCOPUS: 60849114415.


Alves N.L., Huntington N.D., Rodewald H.R., Di Santo J.P.,
Thymic epithelial cells: the multi-tasking framework of the T cell "cradle". Trends in Immunology30(10):468-474, 2009. [Journal: Article] [CI: 44] [IF: 8,8]
DOI: 10.1016/j.it.2009.07.010 SCOPUS: 70349556314.