After completing her formal training as an Internist and a subsequent PhD in the field of HIV/AIDS immunopathogenesis, Ana E Sousa, has pursued a career as full-time researcher, leading a group dedicated to human immunodeficiencies at the IMM, a reference Institute for science in Portugal. Her research group gathers clinical and basic investigators in such a way to guarantee the scientific training of both MD and biomedical researchers with the ultimate goal of identifying new strategies for immunological reconstitution. Between 2009 and 2012, she served as President of Portuguese Society for Immunology. Among her scientific contributions to the HIV/AIDS field, it is worth emphasizing a couple of key papers that helped establish hyper-immune activation as a main determinant of HIV disease progression (Sousa, JI2002; Grossman, Nature Med 2002), and that her work represents an international reference source for the study of HIV-2 infection, a naturally-occurring model of attenuated HIV disease. Additionally, her lab integrates a reference centre that performs diagnosis, specialized follow-up and research in primary immunodeficiencies, rare diseases considered natural experiments from which we can learn a great deal about the human immune system. The ultimate goal is that her research on T-cell development in the human thymus and lymphoid tissue preservation, particularly in the context of persistent immune activation, translates into innovative immune-based therapies.