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Joana Dantas, junior researcher at the Biochemistry & Bioenergetics of Heme Proteins Lab at FCT NOVA, has been awarded the Prémio António Xavier 2018, for the best PhD Thesis conducted in Portugal in 2017, in the area of Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR), Electronic Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) or Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).


Joana Dantas’s PhD thesis, entitled “Characterization of extracellular electron transfer networks in Geobacter sulfurreducens, a key bacterium for bioremediation and bioenergy applications”, was developed under the supervision of Carlos Salgueiro, leader of the Biochemistry & Bioenergetics of Heme Proteins Lab and Associate Professor at the Chemistry Department - FCT NOVA.


Joana´s work focused on the structural and functional characterization of multiheme proteins from G. sulfurreducens. This bacterium has awakened significantly attention because of its impact on natural environments and biotechnological applications that include bioenergy production and bioremediation of toxic and radioactive metals. Using NMR spectroscopy as the main tool, this work contributed to reveal and elucidate the electron transfer pathways of G. sulfurreducens and improve future biotechnological applications.


Established in 2006 by Christian Brevard, president of the direction of the Bruker Group, to honor the memory of Professor António Xavier, the António Xavier Prize 2018 distinguishes the best PhD Thesis published in 2017, reporting research work conducted in Portugal, in the area of NMR, EPR or MRI. The award ceremony took place on January 9, during the celebration of the 25 years of ITQB-NOVA.