Mónica Sofia Vieira Cunha


Departamento de Biologia Vegetal

Sala/Gabinete 2.4.11
Ext. Principal 22461
Telefone Direto
Email mscunha@ciencias.ulisboa.pt

Carreira Docente Universitário
Categoria Professor Associado



Scientific Interests

My main research areas are animal infection biology, zoonoses and landscape epidemiology.

I am mostly focused on zoonoses and diseases that affect wildlife and livestock, with an emphasis on socially-important, economically-relevant pathogens and on multi-host pathogen scenarios that, through cascading effects, affect animal community composition/structure and ecosystem health.

Being a microbiologist, in the beginning, my natural focus was at the level of the microorganism but my interests and efforts have progressed to contemplate the role of (a)biotic factors and anthropogenic determinants in infectious disease distribution, transmission dynamics and host/population adaptive responses.

Some of the topics covered by my research group include:

- Animal tuberculosis;

- Molecular epidemiology, transmission dynamics and evolutionary genetics of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex bacteria using genome sequencing, comparative genomics and systems biology tools;

- Biology and ecology of gut commensals and microbiota in health and disease, uncovered through metagenomics and culturomics;

- Antimicrobial Resistance Phylodynamics under the One Health Framework

- Diagnosis, Epidemiology and Pathogenesis of bacterial, parasitic and viral infections

- Sentinel surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater

My work is guided by a cross-disciplinary research perspective, integrating microbiological, molecular, genomic and mathematical tools and combining ecological, conservation and socio-economic approaches at different scales.

I am highly committed to support knowledge-based interventions and to inform management decisions and policy.

I strongly believe in action and, over the last years, I have been highly dedicated to applied research and field work to uncover pathogen transmission cascades, also developing biotechnology-based strategies to detect and control pathogens. In parallel, I have been strongly involved in education, capacity building and scientific dissemination.

Publicações selecionadas
  • Ramos B, Gordon SV, Cunha MV (2020). Revisiting the expression signature of pks15/1 unveils regulatory patterns controlling phenolphtiocerol and phenolglycolipid production in pathogenic mycobacteria. PLoS One. 15(5):e0229700. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0229700. eCollection 2020. PubMed PMID: 32379829.
  • Pereira AC, Bandeira V, Fonseca C, Cunha MV (2020). Egyptian Mongoose (Herpestes ichneumon) Gut Microbiota: Taxonomical and Functional Differences across Sex and Age Classes. Microorganisms. 8(3). pii: E392. doi: 10.3390/microorganisms8030392. PubMed PMID: 32168965; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7143146.
  • Pereira AC, Reis AC, Ramos B, Cunha MV (2020). Animal tuberculosis: Impact of disease heterogeneity in transmission, diagnosis and control. Transbound Emerg Dis. doi: 10.1111/tbed.13539. [Epub ahead of print] Review. PubMed PMID: 32155685.
  • Cunha MV, Rosalino LM, Leão C, Bandeira V, Fonseca C, Botelho A, Reis AC (2020). Ecological drivers of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis detection in mongoose (Herpestes ichneumon) using IS900 as proxy. Sci Rep. 10(1):860. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-57679-3. PubMed PMID: 31964932; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6972914.
  • Gomes J, Rocha H, Carvalho C, Bandeira V, Fonseca C, Rosalino LM, Cunha MV (2020). Molecular detection and characterization of Leishmania infantum in free-ranging Egyptian mongoose (Herpestes ichneumon). Int J Parasitol Parasites Wildl. 11:158-162. doi: 10.1016/j.ijppaw.2020.02.001. eCollection 2020 Apr. PubMed PMID: 32071863; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7016331.

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