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M. Luisa Vieira is Assistant Researcher in Medical Microbiology (Bacteriology) at the Institute of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Universidade NOVA de Lisboa (IHMT/UNL), since 2006.
She has a Biology degree (scientific branch) from Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon (UL), and also a BSc in Pathologic, Cytologic and Thanatologic Anatomy from the Technical School of Lisbon Health Services [current Lisbon School of Health Technology (ESTeSL)] and Faculty of Medical Sciences (FCM)/UNL; MSc in Medical Parasitology (1st edition, 1994/96, IHMT/UNL), and PhD in Biomedical Sciences (Microbiology), IHMT/ UNL.
She is researcher on bacterial zoonotic diseases (Lyme borreliosis and leptospirosis) and teacher of these scientific areas in postgraduate courses of the IHMT/UNL. She is responsible of the Leptospirosis Laboratory (a reference Lab at national level), according to WHO rules.
Her main areas of interest are: (i) tick borne-diseases (e.g. Lyme disease); (ii) antigenic and molecular characterization of Leptospira spirochetes (including new isolates) from Portugal, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, and Brazil for Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. complex); (iii) epidemiological surveillance of zoonotic spirochetoses in Portugal; (iv) vector(tick)-spirochete-host relationships; (v) development of molecular tools for diagnosis, and (vi) Lyme disease versus multiple sclerosis – a truth or a myth?
She has participated in several research projects and supervised/co-supervised postgraduate students (9 MSc and 3 PhD) at the IHMT. She was director of Medical Microbiology Unit (IHMT), from 2013 to 2015.
ML Vieira is author/co-author of 30 peer reviewed publications and 4 book chapters, and more than 80 presentations (oral and poster) in national and international meetings. She is member of several scientific societies related to her area of research.
The work of my team is focused on the study of two of great medical importance spirochetes (Borrelia and Leptospira) with particular emphasis on the following aspects: (i) Antigenic and molecular characterization of (new) species of Leptospira and Borrelia genera; (ii) Epidemiology of leptospirosis and Lyme disease in Portugal; (iii) Development of molecular tools for early diagnosis of leptospirosis, and application of new molecular techniques (eg real time-PCR, LAMP, …) for detection/ identification of genospecies of Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. complex in vector (ticks) and / or in humans;; (iv) Study of vector-borrelia-host relationships; (v) Differential diagnosis of febrile illnesses (malaria and leptospirosis) in Angola and Mozambique – an integrated approach; Lyme disease versus multiple sclerosis; (vi) Study of the cytotoxic effect of the Brazilian endemic plants on infection by B. burgdorferi s.l., spirochetes (in collaboration with University of Brasilia, Brazil).
Team: Teresa Carreira [MSc, Lab Technician]; Mónica Nunes [PhD student,/ FCT fellowship]; Elsa Gabriel-Fortes [(Angola), PhD student/ FCG fellowship]; Marta Nascimento, Adriana Sardïnha, Marisa Lopes (MSc students); Yanna Nóbrega [(Brazil), PhD, Professor University of Brasilia]
- Nunes M, Parreira R, Lopes N, Maia C, Carreira T, Sousa C, Faria S, Campino, L, Vieira ML. 2015. Molecular identification of Borrelia miyamotoi in Ixodes ricinus from Portugal. Vector borne and zoonotic diseases (Larchmont, N.Y.) 08/2015; 15(8):515-7.
- Maia C, Almeida B, Coimbra M, Fernandes MC, Cristóvão M, RamosC, Martins A, Martinho F, Silva P, Neves N, Nunes M, Vieira ML, Cardoso L, Campino L. 2015. Bacterial and protozoal agents of canine vector-borne diseases in the blood of domestic and stray dogs from southern Portugal. Parasites & Vectors, 8:138.
doi: 10.1186/s13071-015-0759-8. Link
- Ferreira AS, Costa P, Rocha T, Amaro A, Vieira ML, Ahmed A, Thompson G, Harstkeerl RA, Inácio J. 2014. Direct detection and differentiation of pathogenic Leptospira species using a multi gene targeted real time PCR approach. PLOS One, 9(11):e112312
- Esteves LM, Bulhões SM, Branco CC, Mota FM, Paiva C, Cabral R, Vieira ML, Mota-Vieira L. 2014. Human Leptospirosis: Seroreactivity and Genetic Susceptibility in the Population of São Miguel Island (Azores, Portugal). PLOS One, 9(9): e108534.
- Ana S. Faria, Maria das Neves Paiva-Cardoso, Mónica Nunes,Teresa Carreira, Hélia M. Vale-Gonçalves, Octávia Veloso, Catarina Coelho, João A. Cabral, Madalena Vieira-Pinto and Maria L. Vieira. 2014. First of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato DNA in Serum of the Wild Boar (Sus scrofa) in Northern Portugal by Nested-PCR. EcoHealth, 2014 Sep 18. [Epub ahead of print] doi: 10.1007/s10393-014-0973-4. Link