Bruna Garcia

Bruna Martins Garcia


I hold a MSc in Molecular Biology and a PhD in Natural Sciences, during which I studied how metabolic inputs dictate lipids' synthesis. For my postdoctoral research, I want to reveal how metabolism controls the dissemination and metastatic outgrowth of breast cancer cells in target distant sites.

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Bruna Martins Garcia received her BSc in Biotechnological Engineering from the São Paulo State University, Brazil in 2016. Bruna developed her Master’s thesis at the Federal University of São Carlos, Brazil, supervised by Marcos Roberto Chiaratti, where she studied the role of two mitochondrial proteins in oocyte development and the inheritance of metabolic diseases. During her Master’s studies, Bruna secured a fellowship to develop part of her research at the University of Padova, Italy, supervised by Luca Scorrano and Marta Giacomello.

For her PhD, Bruna joined the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing and the University of Cologne, Germany in 2019 to study lipid synthesis regulation under the supervision of Lena Pernas. Bruna discovered a key role for glutamine in the regulation of cholesterol synthesis, opening a new avenue to develop glutamine-based therapies to effectively control cholesterol levels, as filled on patent application EP23171736.4. In 2023, Bruna got an EMBO short-term fellowship to fund a research exchange in Noam Zelcer's group in the Amsterdam UMC, Netherlands, to expand her studies to in vivo models, and she successfully defended her thesis with “summa cum laude” honors. Beyond discovery, Bruna has also been passionate about disseminating science among minority groups. She has engagged in teaching low-income teenagers, as well as female and African exchange students, with the vision to promote inclusion and diversity in science. Bruna was also the founder of a writing club at the Max Planck Institute to help non-native English speakers (herself included) improve their scientific writing skills.

In January 2024, Bruna joined the Cancer Dormancy & Immunity Laboratory at the Champalimaud Foundation as a postdoctoral researcher, where she aims to dissect the role of tissue metabolism in breast disseminated cancer cell dormancy and metastasis.

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