The ANTIOX-Ecophys Team
Prof. Sergi Munné-Bosch
Sergi Munné-Bosch was born in Barcelona, Spain, in 1974. He received the Biology degree and the Ph.D. from the University of Barcelona, Spain, in 1996 and 1999, respectively. He has performed several stays as a research scientist abroad, including the University of Hannover (Germany), University of Fukuyama (Japan) and University of Virginia (United States), among others. From 2000 to 2003, he was an Assistant Professor at the Department of Evolutionary Biology, Ecology and Environmental Sciences at the University of Barcelona, and during the period from2002 to 2003, he also worked as a research scientist at the National Research Council in Spain (CSIC). Since 2017, he has been a Full Professor of plant physiology and he leads the ANTIOX research group at the Department of Evolutionary Biology, Ecology and Environmental Sciences at the University of Barcelona focused on the study of the function of antioxidants in plants, plant ecophysiology and potharvest processes in plants. During 2000 and 2003, he was a recipient of the Plant Water Relations and Plant Physiology Awards, respectively, given by the Spanish Society of Plant Physiologists. He was a recipient of the ICREA Academia Award, given by the Catalan Government in 2008 and 2014. Since 2015 he is Editor-in-Chief of the Elsevier journal “Environmental and Experimental Botany”.
Marta Pintó-Marijuan received a BSc in Biology and a Ph.D. from the University of Barcelona, Spain, in 2003 and 2009, respectively. In December 2020, she became Associate Professor of Plant Physiology at the Department of Evolutionary Biology, Ecology and Environmental Sciences at the University of Barcelona. She performed several research stays in both national and international research centres: National Research Council in Spain (CSIC), University of the Basque Country (UPV; Bilbao), Instituto de Tecnologia Química e Biológica (ITQB – Universidade Nova de Lisboa; UNL), Institute of agro-environmental and forest biology (IBAF-CNR, Montelibretti, IT), Centre d’Ecologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive (CEFE-CNRS, Montpellier, FR), Instituto Superior de Agronomia (Lisbon, PT), Universidade de Aveiro (PT) and University of California-Berkeley (UC Berkeley, USA). Moreover, she collaborated with several private companies: Syngenta España SAU (Madrid, SP), Biovert SA (Lleida, SP), Bioiberica SA (Barcelona, SP) and Altri Gestão florestal (Olho Marinho, PT). With a background on plant ecophysiology, mainly related to the mechanisms to cope with abiotic stresses or climate change conditions of Mediterranean forest, crops and model species, Dr. Pintó-Marijuan became member of the Antiox research group in January 2013. Since then, she has been involved in the developement of the new research line focused to understand the physiological and biochemical traits of native vs invasive species. We focused our research interests on the importance of the role of the antioxidant molecules (tocopherols, ascorbic acid and carotenoids) and the photoprotection mechanisms of these species to be adapted to the Mediterranean conditions.
Melanie Morales has received funding from the 3-year postdoctoral fellowship program Beatriu de Pinós (co-funded by the Government of Catalonia and the Horizon 2020-European program) for the study of photoprotection mechanisms in plants live under extreme environments (extremophytes). This fellowship allowed her to rejoin the ANTIOX Ecophys group in August 2020, in which she developed her PhD in Plant Biology (2012-2015). Besides, she is leading the 2-research lines from the ANTIOX Ecophys Group: Abiotic Stress Tolerance and Sexual Dimorphism. During her previous postdoc-research career, she was awarded an international postdoc-fellowship (FONDECYT, Chile) and Juan de la Cierva Formación (Spain) in which she focused her research on oxidative stress as a master regulator in trade-offs between productivity and stress tolerance in terrestrial plants, which can help to discover new model species for studying mechanisms of future interest to crops. She has developed this research participating with international collaborators and projects, Prof. León Bravo (Universidad de la Frontera, Chile) and Jaume Flexas (Universitat de les Illes Balears, Spain), and participating in extreme field campaigns such as the Antarctic Peninsule, Chilean Altiplano (at 4.500 m.a.s.l) and the Atacama Desert, the world's driest desert. Melanie Morales pursue her goals to establish her research line in extremophytes with the hope to get scientific advances helping to preserve the environment and species under the climate change framework.
David H. Fresno
David H. Fresno received his BSc in Biotechnology from the University of Barcelona in 2017. He carried out his final degree project at the Molecular Plant Pathology group of the University of Amsterdam studying the interactions between tomato, fungal endophytes and Fusarium. During his MSc degree, he studied the relations between sweet cherry development and its native microbiome. He was awarded with a 4-year fellowship in 2019 to carry out his PhD research in the Antiox group, studying the role of different phytohormones and antioxidant compounds on plant-microbe interactions.
Sabina Villadangos received her BSc in Biochemistry from the Autonomous University of Madrid in 2019 and her MSc in Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biomedicine from the Autonomous University of Barcelona in 2020. During her BSc final project, she studied mechanisms that tolerate oxidative stress damage in mitochondrial DNA at CBMSO, and she performed her MSc final project in protein structural analysis at IBMB. She has recently joined the ANTIOX group to perform the PhD focusing her research on the vitamin E implication in the foliar and fruit abscission in plants and its photooxidative role in CAM plants.
Laia Jené received her BSc in Biotechnology from the University of Barcelona (UB). Then, she studied an MSc in High School teaching at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) and an MSc in Environmental Agrobiology at the University of Barcelona (UB). Laia started her collaboration with ANTIOX group in 2018, where she developed her BSc final project about the invasive potential of several populations of Carpobrotus edulis. For her MSc final project, she worked with the Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA), in Lleida. There, she studied the calcium absorption and translocation of several peach rootstocks while designed an in vitro methodology using the calcium isotope 44Ca. Currently, Laia is carrying out her PhD about parasitic species, such as the legume parasite Orobanche sp.
Tania Mesa received her BSc in Biotechnology from the University of Barcelona, her MSc in Food Research, Development and Innovation and MSc in Environmental Agrobiology at the same university. Tania started collaborating with the ANTIOX group in 2018, where she developed her BSc final project about the identification of a new variety of avocados and its content of vitamin E. For her MSc, she focused on the physiological response of tomato plants to temperature stress and its implication on fruit quality. At this moment, Tania was awarded with an FPI grant to perform her PhD, and focused her research on the study of vitamin E biosynthesis, transport and function.
Clara Julián obtained her Bsc in Biology from the University of Seville (US). During her bachelor she joined the University of Lisbon to study the role of fatty acid in extreme salinity resistance in invasive species, as Spartina patents. Then she developed her Bsc final project at the Institute of Plant Biochemistry and Photosynthesis (IBVF) in Irene Garcia’s group studying the role of cyanide-mediated signaling in plant response to fungal pathogens. After, she moved to Barcelona to study a Msc in Plant Biology, Genomics and Biotechnology at the Centre for research in Agriculture Genomics (CRAG), where she studied the role of antimicrobial peptides for crop protection and wrote her final project about the same topic. After this period, she moved to Germany to work in the field of agriculture and farming and participated writing the book “Traditional uses of plants in Anthroposophical Medicine”. Now, she is performing her PhD about holoparasitic plants and their effects in different plant species, as tomato and the Mediterranean shrub Cistus albidius.
Ot Pasques received his BSc in Biotechnology from the University of Barcelona in 2021. He studied plant ecophysiology during the last year of his degree, and as a part of his final degree project he participated in the study of stress tolerance mechanisms of Plantago lanceolata in the Pyrenees. After that, he continued to study pyrenean plant life during his MSc in Environmental Agrobiology at the University of Barcelona. Alongside Prof. Munné-Bosch, he researched the morphological and physiological traits underlying longevity in extremely old Pinus uncinata trees located in the Pyrenees, focusing in several stress, growth, dormancy and vigor markers as well as in modular growth and dormancy. Nowadays, he is carrying out his PhD in plant longevity and adaptability of different high mountain species in different pyrenean threatened ecosystems.
Núria F. Bermejo
Núria F. Bermejo finished her BSc in Biotechnology at the University of Barcelona in 2021. She joined the ANTIOX research group in 2020 with her BSc final project about β-carotene biofortification of chia sprouts using plant growth regulators. She received her MSc in Enviromental Agrobiology at the University of Barcelona in 2022 and carried out her MSc final project in the ANTIOX group, continuing in the same research line, focusing on antioxidant vitamins E and C. In 2022, she was awarded with a 4-year PhD Fellowship (FPU) from Spanish Government. Núria is currently performing her PhD research, studying the physiological mechanisms involved in water stress tolerance in legumes and new biostimulants to improve its growth and quality.
Alejandra Romero is studying a BSc in Biotechnology at the University of Barcelona. She has joined the ANTIOX Team to carry out her final degree project on the study of the biosynthesis of vitamin E under the supervision of Tania Mesa and Prof. Sergi Munné-Bosch.
Claudia Mariani is studying a BSc in Biotechnology at the University of Barcelona. She has joined the ANTIOX Team to carry out her final degree project on the study of plastid differentiation in tomato fruits under the supervision of Tania Mesa and Prof. Sergi Munné-Bosch.
THE ANTIOX TEAM