Two LS4FUTURE researchers awarded by the CaixaResearch Health call 2023


The “la Caixa” Foundation selected for funding a project co-led by Mariana G. Pinho and a project proposed by Luis Ferreira Moita, LS4FUTURE researchers from ITQB NOVA and IGC, respectively.  

Luís Ferreira Moita’s project “Initiation of immune responses by surveillance of homeostasis perturbations” will receive a total of €499.9K to elucidate how immune responses are initiated and how the ability of the immune system to perceive the physiological perturbations induced by infections contributes to this process, in addition to the ability to detect the causative microorganism. The results of this project are expected to advance the understanding of the immune response and lead to the development of new generations of therapeutics for the treatment of severe infections, a major and growing cause of mortality worldwide. 

The project “ChaoTROPIC Antimicrobial Hybrids for Bacterial Penetration”, led by Javier Montenegro from the University of Santiago de Compostela and Co-PI by Mariana G. Pinho, awarded with €984.05K, will explore the properties of boron clusters in the transport of antimicrobial molecules across bacterial cell membranes. This new approach is particularly relevant to gram-negative bacteria, which have a second outer membrane as an additional barrier and are currently the leading cause of death from antibiotic-resistant infections. As such, the project aims to contribute to the fight against bacterial antibiotic resistance, one of the greatest challenges for the future of human health. 

Both projects were awarded within the Infectious Diseases thematic area of the 7th edition of the CaixaResearch Call, which aims to support scientifically excellent basic or translational research initiatives with potential and profound societal impact.