The Executive Committee for 2012-2013:
Foggy like many others but unique in many ways, Porto was the city where I was born and raised. I entered medical school at Porto University in 2001, during which I had the opportunity to undertake enriching living and working experiences abroad, as a research and clinical intern. At the same time, I engaged in a research project at the Biochemistry department of the same medical school. These experiences were mind setting, and career changing for me - medicine and science work better together. After initiating the clinical internship in internal medicine, I decided to pursue a Phd in molecular medicine abroad. I am now in my 3rd year at Mass General Hospital/ Harvard Medical School, and at the same time I’m embarking in this great adventure that is “Sailing with PAPS towards the future”.
I am currently a Downstream Process Engineer at MedImmune’s Biopharmaceutical Development division. For the past three years, I have been developing and optimizing a scalable purification process for monoclonal antibodies, and supporting tech transfer activities into cGMP manufacturing to supply clinical trials. After graduating from University of Porto with a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering, I was awarded a scholarship to complete my PhD in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering from the University of Maryland Baltimore County. My thesis scope included developing a novel methodology for examining residue specific equilibrium unfolding constants of Betaamyloid- an Alzheimer’s disease related protein- and exploring its interaction with cell membrane. From this study key proteins were identified to be involved with Beta-amyloid induced biological activity. I have been involved with PAPS activities since 2006 and for the second consecutive year, I am the Washington DC Chapter Leader.
I am currently a PhD student of the GABBA Program of University of Porto, Portugal, researching for my thesis on skeletal muscle stem cells, regeneration and embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma (a pediatric cancer of the muscle) using zebrafish models, at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston. I obtained my Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Molecular Biology and Genetics from the University of Lisbon. There I worked at Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciencia (IGC) and Instituto de Medicina Molecular (IMM) on the characterization of a zebrafish model of premature aging, a loss-of-function mutant for telomerase, an enzyme that has been implicated both in organismal aging and cancer. It was in this vibrant scientific environment that I became very interested in understanding how tissues are maintained functional in an organism through the action of adult stem cells and how that function declines with aging and is disrupted in cancer. The opportunity of growing even more personally and scientifically was what made me decide to head to Boston. Besides my still young career in biology research, I hope to increasingly expand my interests in science communication and technology transfer in the future as well as keeping my activity in Music, as a flutist and singer.
I was born in Lisbon and spent many years living abroad until choosing British Columbia, Canada as the location for my Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Victoria in economics and statistics. I am currently working at the Boston Medical Center as a research assistant in the department of Pediatric Medicine. There, we are investigating how to improve and make more efficient clinical practices in the Ambulatory Pediatrics clinic of Boston’s largest safety net hospital. My interests lie in policy, entrepreneurship and technology transfer into international developing markets within the healthcare sector.
I have a medical degree, but currently I am a full-time scientist. I started to collaborate in research projects after completing my second year of medical school. During two summers I travelled to the United States and I decided myself to increase my laboratorial skills and extend my basic science knowledge. I worked as a summer student in Maine Medical Center and the following year I got a position at Massachusetts General Hospital to do research during the summer of 2005. These experiences were so overwhelming that made me want to go back to the US later in my life. After graduating from medical school, I moved from my hometown – Matosinhos - to Lisbon to do my internship at Curry Cabral Hospital, which has one of the busiest general surgery and liver transplant departments in Europe. There, I had the chance to improve my clinical and surgical skills. I made up my mind for a surgical specialty during this year and Urology soon captured my preference: an exciting field with various pathologies and where myriads of studies can be done, experimental and clinical. I always wished to complement my medical activity with bench-side research. Therefore in 2010 I interrupted my residency in Urology and decided to pursue a PhD at Johns Hopkins University to study the cellular pathways involved in prostate cancer progression and provide physicians with novel biomarkers of aggressive disease and therapeutic targets.
I am conducting my PhD thesis research “Design Metrics and Optimization: Reducing Buildings Energy Load” in the Architectural Robotics Laboratory at MIT under the MIT Portugal doctorate program in Sustainable Energy Systems. My research focuses on validating a methodology for conceiving housing benefiting from the rapid advance of computational systems to permit engineering analysis and CAD-CAM manufacture. Thesis research recently awarded by the MIT Legatum Fellowship. Working with the Changing Places group at MIT Media Lab, I have helped establish a new methodology to outline metrics for optimization in the building environment under the CityHome research project and developing a new charging system to integrate electric vehicles and smart grids. Graduated from FAUTL in Lisbon and with a Master degree in “Digital Tectonics” granted by IaaC/UPC in Barcelona with two Post graduations in “Three-dimensional modeling” at the Calouste Gulbenkian/SUPINFOCOM and “Sustainability and Environmental Management” at Harvard Extension (ongoing), I have previously worked in Fuksas(Rome), ADEPT and JDS(Copenhagen) offices.
In this new age of globalization, being an ocean apart from your home town is not unusual anymore. However, while growing up in the beautiful northwest region of Minho, never have I considered being where I am right now. I lived in the ancestral Braga most of my life (I am a big supporter of SC Braga), where I graduated from Minho University in Physics. After finishing up my bachelor degree, I lived and worked in Fribourg, Switzerland, for half a year, where I had the pleasure to experience the delights of a truly heavenly chocolate: Chocolat de Villars. Nowadays, I am pursuing a PhD in Physics in Boston University studying the statistical properties of brain cells in the cerebral cortex, while getting to know the bittersweet weather of Boston.
I am researching for my PhD thesis — Development of a blood vessel-on-a-chip system — at Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology Division (HST), under the Doctoral Program in Experimental Biology and Biomedicine. I have a Bachelor's in Biochemistry and a Master's in Cell and Molecular Biology, having developed my thesis at IBMC - Institute for Molecular and Cell Biology (Porto, Portugal). With the desire to synergistically add my knowledge in biochemistry and molecular biology to bioengineering I worked at INEB - Institute for Biomedical Engineering (Porto, Portugal) as a research assistant for 9 months, enrolling in my current PhD Program after that time. I am intrinsically pro-active, adventurous and fond of entrepreneurial spirit, so I always find ways to communicate science, bring people together and create value.
I am pursuing an undergraduate degree at MIT in Computer Science, and I'm in my second year, graduating in 2015. Most of my life I lived in the beautiful Azores, in Terceira Island, and I am really excited to be here, exploring new environments and doing what I like most. Right now, I am working with the Learning and Intelligent Systems at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. I am doing research in several fields related to robotics: motion and task planning and machine learning. I am enjoying this experience a lot, and hope to be around for a few more years, never forgetting my home.
Born in the United States but raised by Portuguese parents from the small island of Santa Maria in the Azores, I grew up with a strong connection to my Portuguese heritage. Proud to be a first generation Portuguese American, I have been continuously involved with the Portuguese community here in Massachusetts. While receiving my Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Boston College, I interned at the Consulate General of Portugal in Boston. I am currently the Administrative Assistant of the Non-Profit Organization and Public Charities Division of the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General Martha Coakley. I work with over 25,000 charities that are required to register and file annual fiscal reports with our Office. I enjoy listening to music of all genres, particularly ones you can dance to. I hope to connect PAPS with the luso-descendent community and to embrace this opportunity to speak the beautiful Portuguese language.