Maria José Umbelino Ferreira is a Professor of Medicinal and Organic Chemistry at the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Medicines, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Lisbon. She leads the research group of Natural Products Chemistry at Research Institute for Medicines (IMed.ULisboa), Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Lisbon and is currently the Coordinator of the Master in Medicinal and Biopharmaceutical Chemistry.
MJU Ferreira main research interest is the isolation of new bioactive chemical scaffolds from plant sources and molecular derivatization of selected compounds, using hemi-synthetic methodologies. She is focused on two research areas: cancer and infectious diseases. Particularly, her main goal is to discover anticancer compounds, with emphasis on targeting multidrug-resistant cancer cells, namely ABC-transporter modulators. The development of anti-infective molecules from African medicinal plants, used in traditional medicine, is also one of her goals.