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Dr Marta Portela Research Fellow, Biochemistry

Dr Marta Portela is a Senior Postdoctoral Scientist (level B) working in A/Prof. Helena Richardson’s laboratory at La Trobe Institute of Molecular Sciences, Melbourne Australia (May 2019-). Her current interests include:
1) Investigating the molecular mechanisms by which the Drosophila tumour suppressor gene Lgl regulates signaling pathways in the developing eye neuroepithelium and
2) Investigating glioblastoma and the cell communication mechanisms between the tumour and its microenvironment and identifying novel targets to combat these deadly tumours, with a particular focus on understanding the role of mitochondrial fitness in brain cells.

Dr Portela received her PhD at the Spanish National Cancer Research Center (CNIO, 2010) and worked in the identification of new molecular markers of cell competition. Then carried out postdoctoral research with Dr Helena Richardson at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (Melbourne) from 2012-2015 and then at La Trobe University (2015-2016), investigating the molecular mechanisms by which the Drosophila tumour suppressor gene Lgl coordinates cell structure, tissue organisation and organ growth, before being awarded a Juan de la Cierva-Incorporacion Fellowship and recruited to the Cajal Institute of Neurobiology (Spain) where she worked in Prof. Alberto Ferrus and Dr. Sergio Casas-Tintó Laboratories (2016-2018) investigating the molecular mechanisms of glia-neuron interactions during the glioblastoma progression.

Dr Portela has been invited/selected to speak at 15 conferences, 9 research institutes and presented 19 posters in national and international conferences (including the European Drosophila Research conference, the US Annual Drosophila Research Conference, Frontiers Meetings and EMBO among others).

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