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Dr Luisa Pereira

Senior Researcher


Senior Researcher: IPATIMUP (Instittuto de Patologia e Imunologia Molecular da Universidade do Porto)



c/o Dr Roberto Frias
s/n 4200-465, Porto,



Tel: 351 225 570 700



The analyses of mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosome diversities are Dr Pereira’s main research areas. Focusing in Portugal and former Portuguese colonies in Africa, significant results were contributed to the: emerging patterns of European and worldwide female and male genetic diversities; quantifying the North African input in Iberia; ascertaining the origin in Africa of the sub-Saharan lineages present now in the New World and in Portugal; and detecting the reorganisation of sub-Saharan diversity inside Africa as a result of the Bantu expansion. She also conducts studies of mitochondrial DNA in clinical genetics (male infertility and myopathies), and in human longevity.


Key research/capacity building interests


Research Interests

  • Human population genetics
  • Mitochondrial DNA neutral and pathological diversities
  • Mitochondrial DNA role in male fertility and human longevity

Capacity Building Interests

  • Collaborate in co-supervision of post-graduate students
  • Training for African students in molecular biology techniques and data analyses

Key methodological skills

  • Molecular biology techniques training
  • Application and development of statistic Methodologies

Current/planned research

  • Longevity in humans of African origins – a genetic approach (submitted for funding).
  • Refining the geographical origin and dispersal routes of early modern humans and early farmers of the Greater Mediterranean with high-resolution genetic techniques (submitted for funding).
  • Complete mitochondrial genomes from asthenozoospermic males: searching for association between mtDNA and sperm motility (ongoing).
  • Y-chromosome phylogeography in Southeast Asia and the Pacific (ongoing).
  • Genetic exchanges between Marocco and Portugal

Current engagement in capacity building

Supervision of dissertations on different levels in Legal Medicine, Biology and Clinical Genetics