About this research group...

The Environment and Resources Group aims at developing innovative approaches to environment and sustainability challenges, working towards specific national interests and internationally relevant topics in frame of the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda goals. Research includes

i) identifying emerging chemical and biological hazards and associated risks in human impacted habitats and developing mitigating methods;

ii) developing strategies for wastewater and soil treatment contributing to foster opportunities to move towards a circular economy model;

iii) devising integrated strategies to plant production in face of new biotic and abiotic environmental challenges. The group is organized in 4 laboratories:

Group Leader

Paula Castro

Paula ML Castro obtained a degree in Food Engineering from ESB-UCP in 1989, and holds a PhD degree in Biochemical Engineering from University College London, 1994(...)


Automation and Miniturization

Environment and Resources


Whose goal is to develop novel sample processing methods, based on flow analysis and microfluidics, and sensing methods for monitoring key environmental parameters, and emerging pollutants, with national priority and international relevance. Devising biomarkers monitoring devices for biological samples is also envisaged.


PhD students
Other Students
  • Maria Melo
  • Maria João Nunes
  • Gonçalo Guedes
  • Adriana Almeida
  • Christina Klima
  • Bruna Faria


F. T. S. M. Ferreira, R. B. R. Mesquita, A. O. S. S. Rangel, Novel microfluidic paper-based analytical devices (μPADs) for the, determination of nitrate and nitrite in human saliva, Talanta, 219 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.talanta.2020.121183

T. C. F. Ribas, R. B. R. Mesquita, T. Moniz, M. Rangel, A. O. S. S. Rangel, Greener and wide applicability range flow-based spectrophotometric method for iron determination in fresh and marine water, Talanta, 216, (2020). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.talanta.2020.120925.

Y. Thepchuay, R. B. R. Mesquita, D. Nacapricha, A. O. S. S. Rangel, Micro-PAD card for measuring total ammonia nitrogen in saliva, Anal. Bional. Chem., 412, 3167 – 3176 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00216-020-02577-w

Y. Thepchuay, C. F. F. A. Costa, B. Sampaio-Maia, R. B. R. Mesquita, D. Nacapricha, A. O. S. S. Rangel, Flow-based method for the determination of biomarkers urea and ammoniacal nitrogen in saliva, Bioanalysis, 12, 455-465 (2020).  https://doi.org/10.4155/bio-2020-0036.

J. A. L. Miranda, R. B .R. Mesquita, A. Nunes, M. Rangel, A. O. S. S. Rangel, Determination of iron(III) in water samples by microsequential injection solid phase spectrometry using an hexadentate 3-hydroxy-4-pyridinone chelator as reagent, Talanta, 191, 409-414 (2019). https://doi: 10.1016/j.talanta.2018.03.091

Bacterial Ecology

Environment and Resources


Aims to explore the interface humans-environment in an integrated perspective of environmental impacts caused by humans and the consequent risks for human health and wellbeing


Pos Doc
PhD students
Research fellow


Manaia CM, Rocha J, Scaccia N, Marano R, Radu E, Biancullo F, Cerqueira F, Fortunato G, Iakovides IC, Zammit I, Kampouris I, Vaz-Moreira I, Nunes OC. 2018. Antibiotic resistance in wastewater treatment plants: Tackling the black box. Environment International 115:312-324. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2018.03.044.

Vaz-Moreira, I., Nunes, O. C., and Manaia, C. M. 2017. Ubiquitous and persistent Proteobacteria and other Gram-negative bacteria in drinking water. Science of the Total Environment, 586:1141-1149. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.02.104.

Sousa, J.M., Macedo, G., Ribeiro, Pedrosa, M., Becerra-Castro, C., Castro-Silva, S., Pereira, M.F., Silva, A.M.T., Nunes, O.C., Manaia, C.M. 2016. Ozonation and UV254 nm radiation for the removal of microorganisms and antibiotic resistance genes from urban wastewater. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 323(Pt A):434-441. doi: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2016.03.096

Varela, A. R., Manageiro, V., Ferreira, E., Guimarães, M. A., da Costa, P. M., Caniça, M., Manaia, C. M. 2015. Molecular evidence of the close relatedness of clinical, gull and wastewater isolates of quinolone resistant Escherichia coli. Journal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance, 3:286-289. doi: 10.1016/j.jgar.2015.07.008.

Varela, AR, André, Nunes, O.C., Manaia, C.M. 2014. Insights into the relationship between antimicrobial residues and bacterial populations in a hospital-urban wastewater treatment plant system. Water Research, 54:327-36. doi: 10.1016/j.watres.2014.02.003.

Environmental Biotechnology And Resources

Environment and Resources


Focusing on microbial based processes for environmental protection and restoration, including pollutants degradation and wastewater treatment and valorisation and microbial assisted plant production in stressed scenarios;


PhD students
Research fellows
MsC students
  • Mariana Godinho


Moreira, I.S., Bessa, V.S., Murgolo, S., Piccirillo, C., Mascolo, G., Castro, P.M.L., 2018. Biodegradation of Diclofenac by the bacterial strain Labrys portucalensis F11. Ecotoxicology Environmrental Safety 152, 104–113.

Araújo GC, Sousa NR, Ramos M, Vega A, Castro PML (2018) Performance of Quercus suber L. at nursery stage - Application of two bio-inoculants under two distinct environments. Annals of Forest Science. 75: 29.

Ramos C., Amorim C.L., Mesquita D.P., Ferreira E.C., Carrera J., Castro P.M.L. 2017 Simultaneous partial nitrification and 2-fluorophenol biodegradation with aerobic granular biomass: reactor performance and microbial communities. Bioresource Technology 238: 232–240.

Calheiros C.S.C., Pereira S.I.A., Brix H., Rangel A.O.S.S., Castro P.M.L. 2017. Assessment of culturable bacterial endophytic communities colonizing Canna flaccida inhabiting a wastewater treatment constructed wetland. Ecological Engineering 98:418–426.

Moreira, H., Pereira, S.I.A., Marques, A.P.G.C., Rangel, A.O.S.S., Castro, P.M.L., 2016. Selection of metal resistant plant growth promoting rhizobacteria for the growth and metal accumulation of energy maize in a mine soil – effect of the inoculum size. Geoderma. 278: 1-16.

Plant Biotechnology and Sustainability

Environment and Resources


Working in the area of plant nutrition and biotic stress, understanding the mechanisms that control nutrient uptake, transport and storage, simulating current and future climate change scenarios;


PhD students
Research fellows
MsC students
  • Ana Isabel Cruz
  • Elsa Rodrigues
  • Fábio Nunes
  • Filipa Pereira
  • Jazmin Osorio
  • Marta Barros
  • Miguel Gaspar (co-supervision)
  • Patrícia Gonçalves (co-supervision)
  • Vítor Pinto (co-supervision)


Vasconcelos, M.W.; Gruissem, W.; Bhullar, N.K. (2016) Iron biofortification in the 21st century: setting realistic targets, overcoming obstacles, and new strategies for healthy nutrition. Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 44, 8-15. DOI: 10.1016/j.copbio.2016.10.001

Santos, C.S.; Carvalho, S.M.P.; Leite, A.; Moniz, T.; Roriz, M.; Rangel, A.O.S.S.; Rangel, M.; Vasconcelos, M.W. (2016) Effect of tris(3-hydroxy-4-pyridinonate) iron(III) complexes on iron uptake and storage in soybean (Glycine max L.). Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, 106, 91-100. DOI: 10.1016/j.plaphy.2016.04.050

Deuchande, T.; Carvalho, S.M.P.; Giné-Bordonaba, J; Vasconcelos, M.W; Larrigaudière, C. (2017) Transcriptional and biochemical regulation of internal browning disorder in ‘Rocha’ pear as affected by O2 and CO2 partial pressures. Postharvest Biology and Technology, 132. DOI: 10.1002/jsfa.8219

Lima, M.; Diaz, S.O.; Lamego, I.; Grusak, M.A.; Vasconcelos, M.W.; Gil, A.M. (2014) Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) Metabolomics of Iron Deficiency in Soybean Leaves. Journal of Proteome Research, 13, 3075−3087. DOI: 10.1021/pr500279f

Nunes da Silva, M., Solla, A., Sampedro, L., Zas, R., Vasconcelos, M. (2015) Susceptibility to the pinewood nematode (PWN) of four pine species involved in potential range expansion across Europe. Tree Physiology, 35, 987-999, DOI: 10.1093/treephys/tpv046.