Principal Investigator:
Rogério Mendes

Marine ecosystems are unique environments characterized by their potential to contribute to environmental and human health and to the sustainable supply of food, energy and biomaterials. The main focus of our research team has been the upgrading of marine bio-resources, viewed either as the source or the target of biotechnology applications. Specifically, the implementation of European legislation on the disposal of discards will lead to considerable onboard and onshore availability of undervalued fish. In parallel with the valorisation of this raw material, the reduction of the environmental impact of this organic matter is also pursued.

Our main goals include:

  • utilization of biotechnological processes for biomolecules production and sustainable increase of waste reduction;
  • study and optimization of new methodologies of preservation and bio-preservation, particularly in chilled products;
  •  utilization of biotechnological alternatives for the production of squalene, omega 3 type fatty acids, especially DHA, phytosterols and other biomolecules,
  • study of biotechnological transformation processes more efficient and clean; and
  • development of innovative products with higher added value, for improved use of all products and by-products from the fisheries and aquaculture sector.

Activities are oriented to impact the full and sustainable utilization of marine biological resources, contribute to renewing the offer of the seafood industry to consumers and concur to the prevention of diseases and guarantee healthy ageing for future generations.

Publications Highlights

Godinho I., Pires C., Pedro S., Teixeira B., Mendes R., Nunes M.L., Batista I. 2016. Antioxidant properties of fish protein hydrolysates prepared from Cod protein hydrolysate by Bacillus sp. Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology, 178(6): 1095-112.

Cardoso C., Mendes R. 2015. Restructured gel products from farmed meagre (Argyrosomus regius) muscle: effect of low salt levels, psyllium fibre and chilled storage. Journal of Aquatic Food Product and Technology, 24: 490-501. 

Martínez-Alvarez O., Batista I., Ramos C., Montero P. 2016. Enhancement of ACE and prolyl oligopeptidase inhibitory potency of protein hydrolysates from sardine and tuna by-products by simulated gastrointestinal digestion. Food & Function, 7(4): 2066-2073.

Teixeira B., Pires C., Nunes M. L., Batista I., 2016. Effect of in vitro gastrointestinal digestion on the antioxidant activity of hydrolysates prepared from Cape-hake by-products proteins. International Journal of Food Science and Technology, 51: 2528-2536.

Furlan V.J.M., Maus V., Batista I., Bandarra N.M. 2017. Production of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) by Aurantiochytrium sp. ATCC PRA-276. Brazilian Journal of Microbiology, 48: 359-365.