Principal Investigator:
Maria João Santos

Pathology in general and parasites in particular cause major impacts in animal health and their sustainable production. The Animal Pathology Research team is dedicated to the study of Parasitology and Pathology of Aquatic Organisms, mainly marine fish, but also echinoderms (e.g. sea urchins), crustacean and molluscs (e.g.: oysters) as an early-warning tool in the evaluation of environmental quality

The effort to characterize new parasitic organisms (micro and macroparasites) and their pathology are strongly linked with health evaluation status of wild or cultivated organisms from marine or freshwater origin, from Portugal or Brazil, in order to mitigate their negative effects.

We also use the health status of invertebrate and vertebrate as biological models to assess the environmental quality, vulnerability and risks.

the main objectives of our team are threefold: i) to study parasites biology and ecology in order to avoid food contamination; ii) to study new parasites in wild and cultivated animals, from marine or freshwater origin, from Portugal and Brazil, and; iii) to study animal pathology as an early-warning tool in the evaluation of environmental quality.

Publications Highlights

Azevedo C., Rocha S., Matos E., Oliveira E., Matos P., Al-Quraishy S., Casal, G. 2016. Ultrastructural and phylogenetic description of Kudoa orbicularis n. sp. (Myxosporea: Multivalvulida): a parasite infecting the muscle of the fish Chaetobranchopsis orbicularis (Teleostei: Cichlidae) in the Amazon region. Journal Eukaryotic Microbiology, 63(1): 27-36.

Eiras J.C., Saraiva A., Cruz C. 2014. Synopsis of the species of Kudoa (Myxozoa: Myxosporea: Multivalvulida). Systematic Parasitology, 87(2): 153-180.

Frade, D., Nogueira, S., Santos, M. J., Cavaleiro, F. 2016. The challenges of asymmetric mating - The influence of male and female size on the reproductive output of Acanthochondria cornuta (Chondracanthidae). Parasitology, 143(14): 1945-1953.

Pereira A., Carvalho A. P., Cruz C., Saraiva, A. (2017). Histopathological changes and zootechnical performance in juvenile zebrafish (Danio rerio) under chronic exposure to nitrate. Aquaculture, 473: 197-205.

Santos M.J., Castro R., Cavaleiro F., Rangel L., Palm H.W. 2017. Comparison of anisakid infection levels between two species of atlantic mackerel (Scomber colias and S. Scombrus) off the Atlantic Portuguese coast. Scientia Marina, 81(2): 179-185.