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Environmental Stress & Functional Ecology - ESFE

Joana Guedes de Jesus

PhD Student

Acacia longifolia Fire Symbioses Microbiology

I hold a MSc in Applied Microbiology from the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon. The aim of my thesis was to study the bacterial diversity inside nodules and the influence of fire in the establishment of symbiosis in Acacia longifolia.Currently, and due to my fascination with this particular invasive species, I'm doing my PhD in Biology and Ecology of Global Changes Doctoral Program in FCUL and cE3c. My project is focused on Acacia longifolia microbial community regarding soil and root nodules, the latter including nodule' acitivity and histology; also, I'm interested on the potential of A. longifolia Green Waste Compost (GWC) to regenerate degraded soils and what could be the impact on other species rhizosphere. This last task will be developed under the scope of R3forest project that I've collaborated before.

The remarkable goal is to contribute with knowledge on fundamental science considering nodulation process throughout time rendering microbial succession and to, ultimately, assess which (native) species could perform better in a deeply transformed soil (by reducing acacia forests) and if GWC will improve which plant species fitness. 

Previously, I was a grant research holder, within the project "R3forest - Using exotic biomass for post-fire restoration: Reuse, Regenerate and Reforest” ( and also in the PDR 2020 project "WineClimAdapt - Seleção e valorização das castas mais bem adaptadas a cenários de alterações climáticas" in collaboration with INIAV (

I'm genuinely curious about plant-microbe interaction and how this can be advantageous to invasive species dispersal capacity untangling an incredible success and adaptative plasticity. Simultaneously, what excites me the most is also the discovery that nurtures my curiosity, the fluctuation of scientific thoughts along with the challenge to communicate discovers to society and make them excited too.


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