The Associate Laboratory Life Sciences for a Healthy and Sustainable Future (LS4FUTURE) is a unique infrastructure in Portugal dedicated to the study of Life Sciences, at different levels of complexity through fundamental, applied, and translational research. It brings together three research units — MOSTMICRO-ITQB, GREEN-IT and iNOVA4Health — and five institutions, ITQB NOVA and NOVA Medical School, from Universidade NOVA de Lisboa, iBET, the Gulbenkian Science Institute and IPO Lisbon, gathering top level scientists and critical mass in this area.

LS4FUTURE subscribes to the One Health concept, working towards environmental and human health to ensure a sustainable future for humankind and our planet. We rely on our distinctive expertise in fundamental, clinical, and applied research and strong complementarity, coupled with strategic partnerships in Health, Industry, Education, Government and Municipalities.

Being composed of diverse actors, from complementary sectors, LS4FUTURE goes beyond the impact of its Research Units, tackling problems in a transdisciplinary and comprehensive way, providing effective solutions for current and emerging societal challenges. By combining public and private (not for profit) institutions from the sectors of Higher Education, Research, Industry Interface and Hospitals, LS4FUTURE will have a profound impact in the research and innovation landscape in the area of Life Sciences in Portugal and Europe.

The LS4FUTURE Associate Laboratory is coordinated by Inês Cardoso Pereira (ITQB NOVA).


Research at LS4FUTURE cuts across a multitude of research topics in life sciences, including molecular and cellular studies in living organisms (and viruses) and their evolution, both as model systems and in the context of complex communities and ecosystems;

Disease mechanisms and the search for innovative therapies in both chronic and infectious diseases;

Tool development and technologies for biopharmaceutical manufacturing;

Biotechnological processes to address sustainability in agriculture, energy and the environment;

Quantitative, computational and digital frameworks to help integrate, analyse and manage complex data.


LS4FUTURE is a national strategic reserve of research in life sciences, working under a unified scientific paradigm, and able to respond to societal challenges. We work closely with several partners from Health, Industry, Education, Government and Municipalities in topics as diverse as current and emerging diseases, intensification of antimicrobial resistance, food threats, ecosystem degradation, responses to climate change, or a sustainable economy system.

LS4FUTURE hosts over 500 PhD holders , including 12 ERC grantees and 13 EMBO members. It provides a very strong researcher training program, including 13 Master and 12 PhD programs, as well as training and support to PhD holders at the various levels of their career, including dedicated programs on innovation.

LS4FUTURE has a very solid international profile, hosting over 200 non-Portuguese students and researchers, due to its strong ability to attract talent and international funding. The LS4FUTURE institutions have in place an efficient collaboration and communication network, including the sharing of scientific and academic infrastructures and administrative support.

Together, they provide state-of-the-art facilities and services to support LS4FUTURE researchers and the Portuguese scientific community.


LS4FUTURE, previously known as Laboratório Associado de Oeiras (LAO), was created in 2000 joining ITQB NOVA, iBET, IGC and later CEDOC.

LAO’s mission was to explore the growing links between basic and applied research, to provide advanced scientific and technological training, to act as a consultant in areas of public interest, and to foster the development of new activities and products of economic interest.

LAO is a national case study for promotion of scientific careers, having set up a pioneering and very successful program to hire PhD researchers.