Skip to main content

L'Oréal Portugal Medals of Honor distinguish three more young scientists


Elisabete Oliveira (REQUIMTE, FCT-UNL), Ana Catarina Fonseca (iMM Lisboa, FML-UL) and Ana Faria (ISPA - MARE), are the three distinguished researchers in the 12th edition of the "L'Oréal Portugal Medals of Honor for Women in Science", created by L'Oréal Portugal, in partnership with the UNESCO National Commission and the Foundation for Science and Technology.

This annual award, worth €20,000, aims to promote the participation of women in science, encouraging the youngest and most promising early career scientists to undertake advanced studies in the area of Health Sciences and Environmental Sciences.

The three young winners, selected from over 70 applicants, join the group of 37 female scientists who have been supported by the L'Oréal Portugal award since its inception in 2004.

Present since the first edition, FCT maintains its support to the L'Óréal Portugal Medals of Honor for Women in Science, ensuring the evaluation of the proposals received by a panel of scientists of recognized merit. Ana Sanchez, member of the Board of Directors, expresses the FCT's commitment to this initiative, "It is a source of pride to be able to contribute to support a new generation of scientists, full of promise and potential, and thus give a boost to science done in Portugal, and to the maintenance of the place of women in science in our country. In fact, Portugal leads in the European indicators on equity in R&D: in the total population of researchers, 45% are women (the European average is 33%); in top positions in scientific and administrative bodies of universities, 30% are women; Portugal is also the third country with the highest percentage of women with qualifications above the master's degree (56%, compared to the European average of 47%).

About the three award-winning female researchers:

Elisabete Oliveira (32 years old) wants to develop a new generation of luminescent nanoparticles, to be used in the discovery of new biomarkers in cancer cells and in the creation of drug delivery and controlled release devices in these cells. His research aims to achieve a more incisive but non-invasive therapy, whose action may be monitored through the luminescence of nanoparticles, leading to a controlled dosage that mitigates adverse effects, also fighting resistance to conventional chemotherapy.

Elisabete Oliveira has a PhD in Biotechnology (2010) from the Faculty of Science and Technology, New University of Lisbon, she spent two years at the University of Vigo, Spain, as a post-doctoral researcher, and now has the same responsibilities in the BIOSCOPE group, at UCIBIO-REQUIMTE, of the institution where she got her PhD. She obtained FCT funding under the FCT Investigator Program 2014. Analytical chemistry, nanotechnology and nanoproteomics are his areas of interest.

Ana catarina Fonseca

Ana Catarina Fonseca (34 years old) intends to study the structure of the heart of patients who have suffered strokes of various origins, including strokes of undetermined origin. Through comparison, she will try to understand if there are changes that can be used to diagnose and prevent new ischemic strokes of undetermined etiology, namely those that currently depend on a lengthy and not always possible Auricular Fibrillation diagnosis.

Ana Catarina received her PhD in Medicine, specialty of Neurology, from the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Lisbon (2014). In the same year she completed a Masters in Public Health at Harvard University (USA), after completing two Master's degrees: in Stroke Medicine at the Danube Krems University, Austria, and in Neuroscience at the University of Lisbon. She is a researcher at the Institute of Molecular Medicine, a professor at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Lisbon and a doctor at Santa Maria Hospital.



Ana Faria

Ana Faria (34 years old) intends to study how fishes of the Portuguese coast are being affected by the increasing acidity of the ocean water, a consequence of the rise inCO2 levels. This circumstance has already proven to have harmful effects on the marine ecosystem, endangering the sustainability of marine fish, an essential resource for mankind.

 Ana Faria has a PhD in Marine Ecology from the University of Algarve (2010). She began her post-doctoral research at ISPA - University Institute, integrating the MARE Research Center, where she continues to do research. She teaches in the undergraduate Biology and in the Master of Marine Biology and Conservation.

(Credits of the images: L'Oréal Portugal)