Luís Pereira de Almeida has been working since 1998 in gene/molecular therapy approaches for the Central Nervous System. In 2002 published one of the first papers showing that lentiviral vectors can be used to produce in vivo models of neurodegenerative diseases (e.g. Huntington's, Parkinson's, Machado-Joseph's disease), an approach on which his group specialized and that is now extensively used in the field (de Almeida LP et al The Journal of Neuroscience).
Professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Coimbra since 2003, coordinated the Masters in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and the Doctoral Programme in Experimental Biology and Biomedicine, and presently teaches at graduate and undergraduate levels. His research activity is developed at the Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology of the University of Coimbra (CNC), Portugal where he is principal investigator and vice-president. He spent short sabbatical leaves at CEA, Saclay in France (2005) and at the Massachussetts Institute of Technology (2010).
The research of his group has been focused on molecular approaches for the study of the molecular mechanisms and advanced therapies for neurodegenerative disorders with a focus on Machado-Joseph disease/spinocerebellar ataxia type 3, including disease modifying and gene silencing approaches, autophagy activation and proteolysis inhibition, sirtuin-1 activation, etc, works published in over 70 papers and book chapters cited over two thousand times, in journals such as Brain (5), Nature Communications, Cell Metabolism, Cell Reports, Annals of Neurology, Human Molecular Genetics (6), Scientific Reports, PlosOne, awarded with prizes by Janssen Pharmaceutics, the Portuguese Society for Neurosciences (2009, 2011, 2012, 2013), the Portuguese Society of Human Genetics (2009), and Fundação Pulido Valente.
Luis Pereira de Almeida is or has been responsible for 20 research projects funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology, the Association Française de Myopathies, private funds, the National Ataxia Foundation (USA), and led one of the twelve European research groups that constitute the Marie Curie Initial Training Network “TreatPolyQ” within the 7th Framework Program of the European Union. His group integrates an E-rare Eranet and 3 JPND european network projects, 2 of these - SynSpread and ModelPolyQ under his coordination.