Contacts Centre for Environmental Biology


PhD, Ciência 2008

CBA research group(s):

Computational Biology & Population Genomics

Personal webpage

Team webpage

Dora Batista

Main Research Interests

My present research interests are focused on the investigation of genetic differentiation patterns of natural populations, aiming at unraveling their demographic and evolutionary histories, and understanding processes of adaptation. Applying molecular markers and population genomics, I am interested in understanding population structure dynamics, their phylogenetic relationships and the mechanisms underlying adaptive divergence, and to identify candidate genes of adaptive significance, related to local climatic adaptation in cork oak and to adaptive evolution of virulence in the two main coffee fungal pathogens - Hemileia vastatrix (Coffee Leaf Rust) and Colletotrichum kahawae (Coffee Berry Disease). For coffee pathogens, it is a further goal to determine the major selection forces and mechanisms driving host adaptation and evolution of pathotypes, providing ground to understand how host resistance genes are overcome, and also to associate markers and candidate genes/loci to virulence profiles. Additionally, I am also involved in transcriptomic studies in cork oak as member of the Cork Oak ESTs Consortium (COEC), as well as in transcriptomic studies in Hemileia vastatrix, and Coffea spp. – H. vastatrix/Coffea spp. - C. kahawae interactions.


Academic Qualifications

2008-2009 -Bolseira de Pós-Doutoramento (BPD/20972/2004), Centro de Biologia Ambiental (CBA/FCUL).

2006-2008 - Bolseira de Pós-Doutoramento (BPD/20972/2004), Estação Florestal Nacional (EFN, INRB, I.P.).

2004-2005 -Bolseira de Pós-Doutoramento – Unidade de Biologia Molecular e Biotecnologia Vegetal (BioFIG), Instituto de Ciência Aplicada e Tecnologia (ICAT/FCUL).

2004 - Doutoramento em Biotecnologia Vegetal, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade de Lisboa (UL)

1998 - Mestrado em Biotecnologia Vegetal, Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa (FCUL)

1993 – Licenciatura em Biologia Vegetal Aplicada, FCUL

Relevant Publications:

Pereira-Leal J., Abreu I., Alabaça C., Almeida H., Almeida P., Almeida T., Amorim M., Araújo S., Azevedo H., Badia A., Batista D. et al. 2014. A comprehensive assessment of the transcriptome of cork oak (Quercus suber) through EST sequencing. BMC Genomics 15:371.

Talhinhas P., Azinheira H.G., Vieira B., Loureiro A., Tavares S.,Batista D., Morin E., Petitot A.S., Paulo O.S., Poulain J., Da Silva C., Duplessis S., Silva M.C. & Fernandez D. 2014. Overview of the functional virulent genome of the coffee leaf rust pathogen Hemileia vastatrix with an emphasis on early stages of infection. Front. Plant Sci. 5:88.

Figueiredo A., Loureiro A., Batista D., Monteiro F., Várzea V., Pais M.S., Gichuru E.K. & Silva M.C. 2013. Validation of reference genes for normalization of qPCR gene expression data from Coffea spp. hypocotyls inoculated with Colletotrichum kahawae. BMC Research Notes 6:388.

Monteiro F.*, Romeiras M.M.*, Batista D.*, Duarte M.C. (*equally contributed as first authors). 2013. Biodiversity assessment of sugar beet species and its wild relatives: linking ecological data with new genetic approaches. American Journal of Plant Sciences 4:21-34.

Silva D.N., Talhinhas P., Cai L., Manuel L., Gichuru E.K., Loureiro A., Várzea V., Paulo O.S. & Batista D. 2012. Host-jump drives rapid and recent ecological speciation of the emergent fungal pathogen Colletotrichum kahawae. Molecular Ecology 21:2655–2670.

Silva D.N., Talhinhas P., Várzea V., Cai L., Paulo O.S. & Batista D. 2012. Application of the Apn1/MAT locus to improve the systematics of the Colletotrichum gloeosporioides complex: An example from coffee (Coffea spp.) hosts. Mycologia 104(2):396-409.

Evaristo I., Batista D., Correia I. & Costa R. 2010. Chemical profiling of Portuguese Pinus pinea L. Nuts. J Sci Food Agric.: 9(6):1041–1049.

Ferreira S., Batista D., Serrazina S. & Pais M.S. 2009. Morphogenesis induction and organogenic nodule differentiation in Populus euphratica Oliv. leaf explants. Plant Cell Tissue and Organ Culture  96:35-43.

Batista D., Fonseca S., Serrazina S., Figueiredo A. & Pais M.S. 2008. Efficient and stable transformation of hop (Humulus lupulus L.) var. Eroica by particle bombardment. Plant Cell Rep.: 27(7):1185-1196.

Batista D., Valdiviesso T., Santos L., Paulo O.S., Gomes-Laranjo J. & Costa R. 2008. Genotyping Castanea sativa x C. crenata and C. sativa x C. mollissima F1 hybrids using nuclear SSRs. Acta Horticulturae. (ISHS) 784:107-112.

Ongoing Projects:

2012 – 2015 - “ Population genomics of virulence adaptation in coffee leaf rust (Hemileia vastatrix)” (PTDC/AGR-GPL/119943/2010). Instituição proponente: IICT/MCES (CIFC); Instituições participantes: FFCUL (CBA); IBET.


Other Information:

  • Referee of manuscripts for In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology — Plant; Trees - Structure and Function; American Journal of Plant Sciences; BMC Biotechnology; PloS One
  • Member of the Cork oak EST Consortium (COEC, hwp://
  • Integral translation of “The Origin of Species” by Charles Darwin and collaboration in the translation of “Descartes Error: Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain”, by Antonio Damasio, and in the translation of Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace (1858) “On the tendency of species to form varieties; and on the perpetuation of varieties and species by natural means of selection”, Journal of the Proceedings of the Linnean Society of London. Zoology 3: 46-50, published in Evolução: História e Argumentos, Vol 1. Série Fundamentos e Desafios do Evolucionismo,.Colecção Esfera das Ciências. Esfera do Caos Editores, Lisboa, pp 23-42.