Filipa Tome

ORCID iD
https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8559-5274
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Germany

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Filipa Tome (2018-01-22)

Biography

My career started with a three year Bachelor degree in Biochemistry at the University of Lisbon. The broad range of subjects taught, including a strong background in mathematics, chemistry, and experience in the laboratory since the first year, gave me a solid basis to start my scientific career. During my bachelor studies I worked as a student helper in a research laboratory for about two years. I started a small project during this time, that eventually developed into my Master thesis a few years later. After finishing my bachelor, I knew I was missing knowledge and experience in molecular biology, and therefore I decided to start a Master degree in Molecular Biology and Genetics, at the same University. During this time, I developed my Masters project at the same laboratory where I had worked as a student helper. I was able to show that the mRNA expression of Hemojuvelin (HJV) , a gene involved in the control of iron homeostasis in humans, is strongly controlled by several post-transcriptional mechanisms, including two upstream open reading frames. Furthermore, I generated most of the constructs used for the experiments and performed the preliminary experiments that suggested an involvement of iron overload in the HJV mRNA response. The work was further continued by a PhD student in the laboratory that was able to complement and finalize the study, leading to a great publication. Given that HJV is a gene related to juvenile hemochromatosis, an early-onset inherited disorder associated with iron overload, this work contributes to the current knowledge of this disease and can impact future therapies. After finishing my studies in 2011, I moved to Gent, Belgium, to start my PhD in Plant Physiology, done at Bayer CropScience and University of Utrecht. I had the fantastic opportunity of being a Marie Curie fellow in the Initial Training Network "Metabolic Reprogramming and Induction of Transcription" (Framework 7), which allowed me to get to know many European laboratories and establish scientific collaborations with 2 different Universities in Europe. My project was related to the study of energy and stress adaptation in Arabidopsis thaliana, specifically the role of the Sucrose non fermenting kinase (SnRK1) pathway in reprogramming metabolism upon starvation. I focused on the identification of novel genes related to the SnRK1 pathway by computational approaches and further experimental validation. I also produced transgenic Arabidopsis lines where I over-expressed and down-regulated genes involved in the SnRK1 pathway and characterised them by high-throughput sequencing and metabolic profiling. After my graduation in 2015, I moved to Cologne, Germany to work as a postdoctoral researcher in the Cluster of Excellence on Plant Sciences (CEPLAS), a joint effort of Heinrich Heine University (HHU), University of Cologne (UoC), Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research (MPIPZ) and Forschungszentrum Jülich (FZJ) (www.ceplas.eu). I am based at the MPIPZ, and I am interested in the molecular mechanisms that determine floret fertility in response to photoperiod in barley and wheat. Since July 2017 I am working on this project as a Bayer - Alexander von Humboldt fellow.
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