Hugo Manuel Matias Duarte

Hugo Manuel Matias Duarte

Plant Genetics and Biotechnology, Integrated no MED
Plant Genetics and Biotechnology
Integrated no MED


After finishing my Bioengineering master’s degree at UAlg, with a master thesis on developing new and alternative solvents for cellulose dissolution, I was selected to integrate the research team of two different projects on cellulose dissolution and regeneration (PTDC/AGR-TEC/4049/2012 - "FIBRACELL", PTDC/AGR-TEC/4814/2014 - FIBRACEL2). During approximately two years I was able to be co-author in several publications, including a book chapter on the subject. I was proudly part of a team composed by Dr. Bruno Medronho and Prof. Anabela Romano, in which we were awarded with the prize Inovation from Crédito Agrícola in category “Research and technological innovation", with project “Development of Sustainable Processes for Ecological Textile Fibers Production from Agro-forestry Resources" (2014). By September of 2016, I also had the opportunity of spending over 3 months in the Chemistry department in Lund University, where I had the opportunity to strengthen my know-how in physical chemistry polymers and colloidal science. At this point I was part of a team working on the problem of cellulose (in)solubility based on cellulose amphiphilicity and the concomitant role of hydrophobic interactions, also contributing to understand the role of cyclodextrins in cellulose complexation and hydrogel formation. In the end of the same year, I was awarded a Marie Curie fellowship via an ITN promoted by the international Bioclean project. Here I integrated a team with experts in fields I never had a deep contact with, acquiring skills in several light and x-ray scattering techniques. At this time I worked in the development of a USAXS model capable of identifying structural changes in Gram-positive bacteria caused by different stresses as pH, hydrogen peroxide and surfactants. The only work done so far in using x-ray scattering in modelling bacterial cells structure, regards the Gram-negative E. coli, to which my work done with a Gram-positive S. epidermidis strain has been published ( Much of the data was acquired at the IDO6 beamline at the European synchrotron radiation facility, which proved to be a much valuable technique on the matter. I was also fortunate with the chance of experiencing a high-level industrial lab environment by spending six months at P&G Newcastle innovation centre. In the beginning of 2020, I returned to Portugal and in the second half of the year I was awarded a junior researcher contract at UAlg via the project “ReFloRest” (PTDC/ASP-SIL/30619/2017). This also gave me the possibility of teaching (MCIL 1st year biochemistry students, practical classes) and mentor several licentiate and master students. I have also been actively cooperating in the writing of proposals for FCT and other sources of financing while establishing several contacts and collaborations within the MED-UAlg. Other national and international level contacts have also been determinant to successfully continue to develop my research. 

Present Research
  • Polyphenols
  • Antibacterial
  • Agro-forestry Residues
  • Resource consumption
  • Circular economy
  • Biomaterials
Research Interests
  • Microbiology
  • Polyphenols
  • Biomaterials
  • Scattering
  • Plant extracts
  • Rheology

Personal Information