Ana Paula Arez

Investigadora Principal com Agregação

PhD in Biology (Molecular Biology) in 2000 with final classification of “Aprovado com Distinção e Louvor”. Faculty of Sciences, University of Lisbon. Theme: "Molecular epidemiology of malaria. Transmission dynamics of mixed infections."

“Agregação” in Biomedical Sciences, Parasitology, July 2011 with “Aprovação por Unanimidade”. Institute of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Universidade Nova de Lisboa.

  • Medical Parasitology, Institute of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Universidade Nova de Lisboa.

  • CMDT – Centre of Malaria and other Tropical Diseases, Institute of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Full member (90%)

    CIAS – Research Centre for Anthropology and Health, Faculty of Sciences, University Coimbra. Collaborator (10%)

Health sciences

Molecular epidemiology of parasitic diseases, especially: a) parasite and human host genetic diversity; b) Interactions between diferente parasite populations which infect simultaneously the same host; c) Interactions host-parasite; d) Transmission dynamics.

Patrícia Machado, Cristina Mendes, Tiago Vaz, Mónica Guerra

Host susceptibility to disease/infection

Malaria has exerted a strong selective pressure on the recent history of the human genome. Over the last decades, evidence has emerged revealing that genetic variants influence the onset, progression, severity and ultimate outcome of malaria infection in humans. The genetic component of susceptibility to malaria is complex and multigenic with a variety of genetic polymorphisms reported to influence both pathogenesis and host response to malaria. The most common and best characterised protective polymorphisms are those involving the erythrocyte-specific structural proteins and enzymes. These polymorphisms include the variant haemoglobins, the thalassaemias, the Duffy antigen and erythrocyte-enzymopathies. Among the later, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency is the most studied. More recently, pyruvate kinase (PK)-deficiency has also been reported as protective against malaria in murine models and other putative targets, such as triosephosphate isomerase (TPI), deserve investigation due to their unexpected high frequencies in individuals with African origin.

On-going studies:

1. “Disorders on the Glycolytic and Pentose Phosphate Pathways of the Red Blood Cell - how do they affect Plasmodium infection?”

2. “Pyruvate kinase deficiency protection against malaria: in vitro evaluation of 2,3-diphosphoglycerate toxicity and Plasmodium falciparum susceptibility”

 Characterisation of parasite populations and transmission dynamics

Concomitant infections may have affect pathology and infection dynamics and if they attenuate falciparum disease severity remains controversial. So, it is important to clarify the infection dynamics and clinical implications of mixed infections. We aim at characterising circulating parasite populations, at describing interactions between them and with the two hosts (humans and mosquito vector), at analysing selective pressures and spreading patterns of mutations on genes associated with the resistance to antimalarials. Finally, the integrated analysis of all these variables through new mathematical modelling approach may contribute to better assess implications for malaria infection and transmission dynamics.

On-going study:

1. “Factors affecting dynamics of Plasmodium concomitant infections in a malaria endemic area: analysis through a new modelling approach?”

As principal investigator

On going - “Disorders on the Glycolytic and Pentose Phosphate Pathways of the Red Blood Cell - how do they affect Plasmodiuminfection?” FCT/MCTES, PTDC/SAU-MET/110323/2009

On going – “Factors affecting dynamics of Plasmodiumconcomitant infections in a malaria endemic area: analysis through a new modelling approach” FCT/MCTES, PTDC/SAU-EPI/113326/2009

As team member

Approved – implementing phase - “OSYRISH – Organizational and informational system to improve the communication management of healthcare associated infections in hospitals”. (PTDC/IVC-COM/5016/2012, FCT/MCE). PI: Prof. Doutor Luís Lapão (UEI International Health, IHMT/UNL).

On going - “Defining the role and extent of protein glycosylation in the malaria causing parasite Plasmodium falciparum”. (CMDT/IHMT-GLYCOPAR). PI: Inv. Doutor João Rodrigues (UEI Clinical of Tropical Diseases, IHMT/UNL).

On going – Iberian Platform of Malaria; platform formed by 34 groups associated to malaria research in Spain and Portugal. It organises seminars and workshops of common interest.

On going - RIDES - RIDES Malaria (Network of Research and Development in Health/Malaria from CPLP)

2008 – 2010 – “Evaluation, follow-up and control of malaria in the province of Misiones (Argentina). Training of health personal to manage malaria outbreaks”. Spanish Agency of International Cooperation for the Development. A/012190/07. PI: Inv. Doutor Pedro Berzosa (ISCIII, Madrid, Spain).

Supervision of PhD projects

On going – Tiago Vaz - “Erythrocyte enzymopathies – effects on malaria infection”. PhD in Biomedical Sciences, IHMT/UNL, Grant SFRH/BD/85675/2012 (FCT/MCE).

On going – Cristina Mendes - “Populational diversity and transmission dynamics of Plasmodium sp. and Plasmodium falciparum in Equatorial Guinea”. PhD in Biomedical Sciences, IHMT/UNL, Grant SFRH/BD/41473/2007 (FCT/MCTES).

On going – Patrícia Machado – “Pyruvate kinase deficiency and protection against malaria”. On going, IHMT/UNL, Grant SFRH/BD/28236/2006 (FCT/MCTES).

2011 - Joana Alves – “Malaria epidemiology in Santiago, Cabo Verde – human genetic factors and population structure of the mosquito vector”. PhD in Biomedical Sciences, Parasitology, IHMT/UNL. Approved by unanimity. Grant SFRH/BD/153451/2005 (FCT/MCTES).

Co-supervision of PhD projects

2012 – Fernanda Dias – “Effect of the host and parasite factors in the disease severity”. PhD in Tropical Medicine. IHMT/UNL. Approved by unanimity.

2009 – Afonso de Almeida – “Studies on malaria epidemiology and antimalarial resistance in East Timor”. PhD in Biomedical Sciences, Parasitology, IHMT/UNL. Approved by unanimity.

Supervision of MSc projects

2011-2012 – Mónica Guerra - "Looking for selection signatures in the human tpi gene region (triose phosphate-isomerase)". Medical Parasitology, IHMT/UNL. Final classification 19.

2010-2011 – Ana Margarida Rosa - "Pyruvate kinase deficiency protection against malaria: in vitro evaluation of 2,3-diphosphoglycerate toxicity and Plasmodium falciparumsusceptibility". Human Biology and Environment, Faculty of Sciences of Lisbon. Final classification 19.

2006-2007 – Cristina Mendes - "Association between Plasmodiumsp populations and erythrocyte polymorphisms – sickle-cell anaemia and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase - in Angola". Biotechnology, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University Nova de Lisboa. Final classification 19.

Co-supervision of MSc projects

2006-2007 - Juliana Miranda – “Study of genetic determinants of susceptibility/resistance in children with different levels of malaria severity (Luanda, Angola)”. Medical Parasitology, IHMT/UNL. Final classification Very Good.

2003-2004 - Patrícia Marques – “Study of single and mixed infection of Plasmodium sp. in human population of two different areas of Manhiça district, Mozambique”. Medical Parasitology, IHMT/UNL. Final classification Very Good.

2003-2004 - Joana Alves – “Description of residual foci of P. falciparum in Santiago, Cabo Verde”. Medical Parasitology, IHMT/UNL. Final classification Very Good.

 

Coordination of advanced course (non-conferring degree). Molecular Protozoology molecular. 15 ECTS. Modules: Molecular protozoology, Population genetics, Bioinformatics applied to the study of parasitosis, Molecular techniques applied to protozoology.

 

Member of Scientific committee of 3rd cycle of studies on Biomedical Sciences, IHMT.

Member of “Establishing committee” of 3rd cycle of studies on Human Genetics and Infectious Diseases, IHMT and Faculty of Medical Sciences (IHMT and FCM / UNL). Coordination of Curricular Units: "Preparation and management of research projects " and "Laboratory training II" in this programme.

Scientific peer-review of manuscripts and research projects

Academic Editor of PLoS ONE, San Francisco, USA.

Regular review at: BMC Infectious Diseases, Infection and Immunity, Journal of Clinical Microbiology, PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, PLoSONE, Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

Expert-Reviewer, The Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding, Roménia.

Participation in institutional bodies

Focal point of IHMT, WHO-AFRO - Epidemic and Pandemic Response - Supporting countries to develop policies and implementation plans for establishment of centers of excellences for disease surveillance, public health laboratory and food and drug regulation.

Member of Scientific committee of 3rd cycle of studies on Biomedical Sciences, IHMT.

Member of “Establishing committee” of 3rd cycle of studies on Human Genetics and Infectious Diseases, IHMT and Faculty of Medical Sciences (IHMT and FCM / UNL). (http://www.ihmt.unl.pt/?lang=pt&page=ensino-e-formacao&subpage=doutoramentos&subsubpage=genetica-humana-e-doencas-infecciosas; http://GeneHDI.ihmt.unl.pt)

Member of Advisory Council of IHMT.

Member of Scientific Council of IHMT.

Machado P., Manco L., Gomes C., Mendes C., Fernandes N., Salomé G., Sitoe L., Chibute S., Langa J., Ribeiro L., Miranda J., Cano J., Pinto J., Amorim A., do Rosário V.E., Arez A.P. 2012 Pyruvate kinase deficiency in sub-Saharan Africa: identification of a highly frequent missense mutation (G829A;Glu277Lys) and association with malaria.PLoS ONE, 7: e47071. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0047071

Culleton R., Coban C., Zeyrek F.Y., Cravo P., Kaneko A., Randrianarivelojosia M., Andrianaranjaka V., Kano S., Farnert A., Arez A.P., Sharp P.M., Carter R., Tanabe K. 2011. The Origins of African Plasmodium vivax; Insights from Mitochondrial Genome Sequencing. PLoS ONE, 6: e29137. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0029137

Mendes C., Dias F., Figueiredo J., Gonzalez V.M., Cano J., de Sousa B., do Rosário V.E., Benito A., Berzosa P., Arez A.P. 2011. Duffy negative antigen is no longer a barrier to Plasmodium vivax – molecular evidences from the African West Coast (Angola and Equatorial Guinea).PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases. 5: e1192. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0001192

Machado P., Pereira R., Rocha A.M., Manco L., Fernandes N., Miranda J., Ribeiro L., do Rosário V.E., Amorim A., Gusmao L., Arez A.P. 2010 - Malaria: looking for selection signatures in the human PKLR gene region. British Journal of Haematology. 149: 775-784. (Epub ahead of print 06 Apr 2010). doi:10.1111/j.1365-2141.2010.08165.x

 Alves J., Machado P., Silva J., Gonçalves N., Ribeiro L., Faustino P., do Rosário V.E., Manco L., Gusmão L., Amorim A., Arez A.P. 2010 - Analysis of malaria associated genetic traits in Cabo Verde, a melting pot of European and sub Saharan settlers. Blood Cells, Molecules and Diseases. 44: 62-68 (Epub ahead of print 16 Oct 2009). doi:10.1016/j.bcmd.2009.09.008

Machado P., Manco L., Gomes C., Mendes C., Fernandes N., Salomé G., Sitoe L., Chibute S., Langa J., Ribeiro L., Miranda J., Cano J., Pinto J., Amorim A., do Rosário V.E., Arez A.P. 2012 Pyruvate kinase deficiency in sub-Saharan Africa: identification of a highly frequent missense mutation (G829A;Glu277Lys) and association with malaria. PLoS ONE, 7(10): e47071. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0047071

Culleton R., Coban C., Zeyrek F.Y., Cravo P., Kaneko A., Randrianarivelojosia M., Andrianaranjaka V., Kano S., Farnert A., Arez A.P., Sharp P.M., Carter R., Tanabe K. 2011 - The Origins of African Plasmodium vivax; Insights from Mitochondrial Genome Sequencing. PLoS ONE, 6(12): e29137. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0029137

Mendes C., Dias F., Figueiredo J., Gonzalez V.M., Cano J., de Sousa B., do Rosário V.E., Benito A., Berzosa P., Arez A.P. 2011 - Duffy negative antigen is no longer a barrier to Plasmodium vivax – molecular evidences from the African West Coast (Angola and Equatorial Guinea). PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases. 5: e1192. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0001192 (IF10: 4,752, C10)

 

Albuquerque D., Manco L., Loua K.M., Arez A.P., Trovoada M.J., Relvas L., Millimono T.S., Rath S.L., Lopes D., Nogueira F., Varandas L., Alvarez M., Ribeiro M.L. 2011 - SLC40A1 Q248H allele frequencies and associated SLC40A1 haplotypes in three West African population samples. Annals of Human Biology, 38(3):378-81. (Epub ahead of print Jan 14). doi: 10.3109/03014460.2010.541496

 

Machado P., Mendes C., do Rosário V.E., Arez A.P. 2010 - A contribuição dos polimorfismos humanos do eritrócito na protecção contra a malaria. Revista Pan-Amazônica de Saúde. 1(4): 85-96.

Alves J., Gomes B., Rodrigues R., Silva J., Arez A.P., Pinto J., Sousa C. 2010 - Mosquito fauna in Cape Verde islands (West Africa): an update on species distribution and a new finding. Journal of Vector Ecology. 35: 307-312. doi: 10.1111/j.1948-7134.2010.00087.x

Almeida A., do Rosário V.E., Arez A.P., Cravo P. 2010 - Plasmodium vivax in the Democratic Republic of East Timor: parasite prevalence and antifolate resistance-associated mutations. Acta Tropica. 115: 288–292. 

Almeida A., do Rosário V.E., Arez A.P., Cravo P. 2010 - Malaria epidemiology in the Democratic Republic of East Timor. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine,3: 283-287. 

Sutherland C.J., Tanomsing N., Nolder D., Oguike M., Jennison C., Pukrittayakamee S., Dolecek C., Hien T.T., do Rosario V.E., Arez A.P.; Pinto J., Michon P., Escalante A.A., Nosten F., Burke M., Lee R., Blaze M., Otto T.D., Barnwell J.W., Pain A., Williams J., White N.J., Day N.P., Snounou G., Lockhart P.J., Chiodini P.L., Imwong M., Polley S.D. 2010 - The human malaria parasite Plasmodium ovale occurs globally as two non-recombining sympatric species. Journal of Infectious Diseases. 201: 1544-1550. (Epub ahead of print 14 Apr 2010). doi: 10.1086/652240

Machado P., Pereira R., Rocha A.M., Manco L., Fernandes N., Miranda J., Ribeiro L., do Rosário V.E., Amorim A., Gusmao L., Arez A.P. 2010 - Malaria: looking for selection signatures in the human PKLR gene region. British Journal of Haematology. 149: 775-784. (Epub ahead of print 06 Apr 2010). doi:10.1111/j.1365-2141.2010.08165.x

 Alves J., Machado P., Silva J., Gonçalves N., Ribeiro L., Faustino P., do Rosário V.E., Manco L., Gusmão L., Amorim A., Arez A.P. 2010 - Analysis of malaria associated genetic traits in Cabo Verde, a melting pot of European and sub Saharan settlers. Blood Cells, Molecules and Diseases. 44: 62-68 (Epub ahead of print 16 Oct 2009). doi:10.1016/j.bcmd.2009.09.008

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