Contacts Centre for Environmental Biology


Full Professor

CBA research group(s):

Evolutionary Genetics

Personal webpage

Team webpage

Maria João Collares-Pereira

Main Research Interests

Using Iberian Cyprinid fish as model systems and a variety of approaches - morphological, ecological, cytogenetical and more recently also behavioral - my research group includes different areas such as systematics, cytogenetics, ecology, biogeography, evolution and conservation biology, and has been organized in two main sub-units - Ecology and Cytogenetics ( We have been mainly interested: i) in comparative chromosomics using conventional and molecular (cytogenomic) techniques for studying the role played by both hybridization and polyploidy in vertebrates evolution; and ii) in understanding the patterns and processes that shape the structure of fish communities in riverine systems.


Academic Qualifications

- 1989 “Habilitation” in Zoology (University of Lisbon)

- 1983 PhD in Systematics and Ecology (University of Lisbon)

- 1974 5-year college graduation in Biology (University of Lisbon)

Recent Publications

Pereira C.S.A., Aboim M.A., Rab P. & Collares-Pereira M.J.  2014. Introgressive hybridization as a promoter of genome reshuffling in natural homoploid fish hybrids (Cyprinidae, Leuciscinae). Heredity 112:343-350.

Reis J., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Araujo R. 2014. Host specificity and metamorphosis of the glochidium of the freshwater mussel Unio tumidiformis (Bivalvia: Unionidae). Folia Parasitologica 61(1):81-89.

Collares-Pereira M.J., Matos I., Morgado-Santos M. & Coelho M.M. 2013. Natural Pathways towards Polyploidy in Animals: The Squalius alburnoides Fish Complex as a Model System to Study Genome Size and Genome Reorganization in Polyploids. Cytogenetic and Genome Research 140(2-4):97-116.

Nabais C., Rampin M. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2013. Comparative cytogenetics of two endangered leuciscine fish, Squalius aradensis and S. torgalensis (Teleostei, Cyprinidae) from the Iberian Peninsula. Comparative Cytogenetics 7(1):33-42.

Pereira C.S.A., Ráb P. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2013. Chromosomes of Iberian Leuciscinae (Cyprinidae) revisited: Evidence of genome restructuring in homoploid hybrids using dual-color FISH and CGH. Cytogenetic and Genome Research 141(2-3):143-152.

Ribeiro F.V., Magalhães M.F. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2013. Spatial and temporal variation in assemblage structure of fish larvae in mediterranean–type streams: contrasts between native and non-native species. Environmental Biology of Fishes 96(4):467-480.

Nabais C., Pereira C., Cunado N. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2012. Synaptonemal complexes in the hybridogenetic Squalius alburnoides fish complex: new insights on the gametogenesis of allopolyploids. Cytogenetic and Genome Research 138:31-35.

Pereira C.S.A., Ráb P. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2012. Chromosomes of European cyprinid fishes: comparative cytogenetics and chromosomal characteristics of ribosomal DNAs in nine Iberian chondrostomine species (Leuciscinae). Genetica 140(10-12):485-495.

Rampin M., Bi K., Bogart J. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2012. Identifying parental chromosomes and genomic rearrangements in animal hybrid complexes of species with small genome size using Genomic In Situ Hybridization (GISH). Comparative Cytogenetics 6(3):287-300.

Kjollerstrom H.J., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Oom M.M. 2011. First evidence of sex chromosome mosaicism in the endangered Sorraia Horse breed. Livestock Science 136(2):273-276.

Neto A., Silva M., Matoso D.A., Vicari M.R., Almeida M.C., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Artoni R.F.2011. Karyotype variability in neotropical catfishes of the family Pimelodidae (Teleostei: Silutiformes). Neotropical Ichtyology 9(1):97-105.

Collares-Pereira M.J. & Coelho M.M. 2010. Reconfirming the hybrid origin and generic status of the Iberian cyprinid complex Squalius alburnoides. Journal of Fish Biology 76(3):707-715.

Filipe A.F., Magalhães M.F. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2010. Native and introduced fish species richness in Mediterranean streams: the role of multiple landscape influences. Diversity and Distributions 16(5):773-785.

Matos I., Machado M., Sucena E., Collares-Pereira M.J., Schartl M. & Coelho M.M. 2010. Evidence for hermaphroditism in the Squalius alburnoides allopolyploid fish complex. Sexual Development 4(3):170-175.

Morgado-Santos M., Matos I., Vicente L. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2010. Scaleprinting: individual identification based on scale patterns. Journal of Fish Biology 76(5):1228–1232.

Pires D.F., Pires A.M., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Magalhães M.F. 2010. Variation in fish assemblages across dry-season pools in a Mediterranean stream: effects of pool morphology, physicochemical factors and spatial context. Ecology of Freshwater Fish 19(1):74-86.

Ribeiro F. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2010. Life-history variability of non-native centrarchids in regulated river systems in the Lower Guadiana drainage (Southwest Iberian Peninsula). Journal of Fish Biology 76(3):522-537.

Filipe A.F., Araújo M.B., Doadrio I., Angermeier P. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2009. Biogeography of Iberian freshwater fishes revisited: the roles of contemporary versus historical constraints. Journal of Biogeography 36:2096-2110.

Monteiro R., Carvalho C. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2009. Karyotype and genome size of Iberochondrostoma almacai (Pisces, Cyprinidae) and comparison with the sister-species I. lusitanicum. Genetics and Molecular Biology 32(2):268-275.

Pereira C., Neto A. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2009. Cytogenetic survey of two distinct genera of Iberian nases (Cyprinidae, Leuciscinae) that hybridize extensively in nature. I. Evidence of a similar and conserved chromosome pattern with some few species-specific markers at macro-structural level. Genetica 137:285-291.

Ribeiro F., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Moyle P. 2009. Non-native fish in the fresh waters of Portugal, Azores and Madeira Islands: a growing threat to aquatic biodiversity. Fisheries Management and Ecology 16:255-264.

Magalhães M.F., Ramalho C.E. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2008. Assessing biotic integrity in Mediterranean streams: development and evaluation of a multimetric fish index. Fisheries Management and Ecology 15:273-289.

Rab P., Rabova M., Pereira C.S., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Pelikanova S. 2008. Chromosome studies of European cyprinid fishes: interspecific homology of leuciscine cytotaxonomic marker-the largest subtelocentric chromosome pair as revealed by cross-species painting. Chromosome Research 16(6):863-873.

Ribeiro F., Elvira B., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Moyle P.B. 2008. Life-history traits of non-native fishes in Iberian watersheds across several invasion stages: a first approach. Biological Invasions 10(1):89-102.

Sousa V., Penha F., Collares-Pereira M.J., Chikhi L. & Coelho M.M. 2008. Genetic structure and signature of population decrease in the critically endangered freshwater cyprinid Chondrostoma lusitanicum. Conservation Genetics 9(4):791-805.

Magalhães M.F., Beja P., Schlosser I.J. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2007. Effects of multi-year droughts on the fish assemblages of seasonally drying Mediterranean streams. Freshwater Biology 52:1494-1510.

Ribeiro F., Orjuela R.L., Magalhães M.F. & Collares-Pereira M.J. 2007. Variability in feeding ecology of a South American cichlid: a reason for successful invasion in mediterranean-type rivers? Ecology of Freshwater Fish 16(4):559-569.

Sousa-Santos C., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Almada V.C. 2007. Fertile triploid males - an uncommon case among hybrid vertebrates. Journal of Experimental Zoology Part A-Ecological Genetics and Physiology 307(4):220-225.

Sousa-Santos C., Collares-Pereira M.J. & Almada V.C. 2007. Reading the history of a hybrid fish complex from its molecular record. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 45:981-996.

Ongoing Projects

  • The mystery of sex bias in Squalius alburnoides complex. An environmental and genetic approach (PTDC/BIA-BIC/110277/2009): team member (PI. MM Coelho, 2011-2013).


Other Information

- General coordinator of the FFishGUL and coordinator of the “Cytogenetic sub-unit”.
- Coordinator of the Protocol with Universidade Estadual de Ponta Grossa (Brazil) for technical and scientific cooperation in Cytogenetics and Evolutionary Biology.
- Member of the Editorial Boards of Genetics and Molecular Biology and Cybium Journals.