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Bárbara Rocha is an Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Coimbra. She has a BSc in Pharmaceutical Sciences, a MSc degree in Medicine (University of Coimbra) and a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences (University of Coimbra). In collaboration with the University of La República (Uruguay) and the Karolinska Institute (Sweden) she studied the biochemical interactions of dietary polyphenols and nitrate in the murine and human stomach, establishing the proof of concept that phenols promote the non-enzymatic production of nitric oxide in the gastric environment upon a meal containing green vegetables. Moreover, she demonstrated that upon production in the gastric lumen, nitric oxide diffuses towards the gastric mucosa and induces smooth muscle relaxation, likely modulating the rate of gastric emptying. Then, Barbara Rocha studied post-translational modifications of gastric proteins induced by dietary nitrate and nitrite. She has shown that pepsin (gastric protease) is nitrated and inactivated by dietary nitrate in the stomach in vivo and that nitrated pepsin prevents the development of peptic ulcers. She later did a postdoc at University of Coimbra where she investigated the impact of dietary nitrate on gut and systemic physiological mechanisms upon antibiotic therapy by modulating gut microbiota. Currently, she is studying the impact of antibiotics on gut microbiota and gastrointestinal welfare at clinical level in collaboration with the Gastroenterology department of Coimbra University Hospital. Barbara Rocha has been team member of several FCT-funded projects and is a pst member of EuroSurg, an European medical students and surgeons network that collaborates to run multicentre international studies. Barbara Rocha is currently co-supervising two PhD students.
Identification

Personal identification

Full name
Barbara Rocha

Citation names

  • Rocha, Barbara S
  • Rocha, BS

Author identifiers

Ciência ID
DD1A-4D76-62F0
Researcher Id
M-7768-2014
Scopus Author Id
24339269500

Telephones

Telephone
  • (+351) 239488400 (Professional)

Addresses

  • Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Coimbra, Polo das Ciências da Saúde, Azinhaga Sta. Comba , 3000-548, Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal (Professional)

Knowledge fields

  • Medical and Health Sciences - Clinical Medicine - Gastroenterology and hepatology
  • Medical and Health Sciences - Basic Medicine - Physiology
  • Natural sciences - Biological Sciences - Cell Biology
  • Natural sciences - Biological Sciences - Biochemistry

Languages

Language Speaking Reading Writing Listening Peer-review
Portuguese (Mother tongue)
English Advanced (C1) Advanced (C1) Advanced (C1) Advanced (C1)
Spanish; Castilian Intermediate (B1) Advanced (C1) Intermediate (B1) Intermediate (B1)
Education
Degree Classification
2012 - 2018
Concluded
Master in Medicine (Mestrado integrado)
Universidade de Coimbra Faculdade de Medicina, Portugal
2008 - 2012
Concluded
PhD in Pharmacy (Doutoramento)
Universidade de Coimbra Faculdade de Farmácia, Portugal
2001 - 2007
Concluded
Bachelor degree (6 years) in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Licenciatura)
Universidade de Coimbra Faculdade de Farmácia, Portugal
Affiliation

Science

Category
Host institution
Employer
2013/06/01 - 2018/08/31 Postdoc (Research) Universidade de Coimbra Centro de Neurociências e Biologia Celular, Portugal
2007/01/10 - 2008/09/30 Researcher (Research) Universidade de Coimbra Centro de Neurociências e Biologia Celular, Portugal

Teaching in Higher Education

Category
Host institution
Employer
2018/09/01 - Current Assistant Professor (University Teacher) Universidade de Coimbra Faculdade de Farmácia, Portugal
Outputs

Publications

Book chapter
  1. Rocha, Barbara S; Rocha, Nelson Pacheco; Gago, Bruno. "Nanoparticles for Brain Drug Delivery: Translational Challenges". In Nanoparticles for Brain Drug Delivery, 453-463. New York, United States: Taylor & Francis Group, 2021.
    Published
  2. Ledo, A.; Rocha, B. S.; Laranjinha, J.. "Bioactive Lipids and the Gut-Brain Axis: Diet as a Modulator of Bioactivity and Diversity of Lipids in the Brain". In Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology, 147-168. Springer International Publishing, 2019.
    10.1007/978-3-030-11488-6_10
Journal article
  1. Rocha, Bárbara S.. "The Nitrate-Nitrite-Nitric Oxide Pathway on Healthy Ageing: A Review of Pre-clinical and Clinical Data on the Impact of Dietary Nitrate in the Elderly". Frontiers in Aging 2 (2021): http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fragi.2021.778467.
    10.3389/fragi.2021.778467
  2. Laranjinha, João; Nunes, Carla; Ledo, Ana; Lourenço, Cátia; Rocha, Bárbara; Barbosa, Rui M.. "The Peculiar Facets of Nitric Oxide as a Cellular Messenger: From Disease-Associated Signaling to the Regulation of Brain Bioenergetics and Neurovascular Coupling". Neurochemical Research (2021): http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11064-020-03015-0.
    10.1007/s11064-020-03015-0
  3. Glasbey, JC; Bibi, S; Pata, F; Ozkan, BB; Van Straten, S; Hodson, J; Chapman, SJ; et al. "Timing of nasogastric tube insertion and the risk of postoperative pneumonia: an international, prospective cohort study". Colorectal Disease 22 12 (2020): 2288-2297. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/codi.15311.
    10.1111/codi.15311
  4. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Laranjinha, João. "Nitrate from diet might fuel gut microbiota metabolism: Minding the gap between redox signaling and inter-kingdom communication". Free Radical Biology and Medicine 149 (2020): 37-43. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2020.02.001.
    10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2020.02.001
  5. Rocha, Barbara S. "Safety of hospital discharge before return of bowel function after elective colorectal surgery". British Journal of Surgery 107 5 (2020): 552-559. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/bjs.11422.
    10.1002/bjs.11422
  6. Chapman, SJ; Clerc, D; Blanco-Colino, R; Otto, A; Nepogodiev, D; Pagano, G; Schaeff, V; et al. "Safety and efficacy of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce ileus after colorectal surgery". British Journal of Surgery (2019): http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/bjs.11326.
    10.1002/bjs.11326
  7. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Correia, Mariana G.; Pereira, Anabela; Henriques, Isabel; Da Silva, Gabriela J.; Laranjinha, João. "Inorganic nitrate prevents the loss of tight junction proteins and modulates inflammatory events induced by broad-spectrum antibiotics: A role for intestinal microbiota?". Nitric Oxide 88 (2019): 27-34. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.niox.2019.04.001.
    10.1016/j.niox.2019.04.001
  8. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Nunes, Carla; Laranjinha, João. "Tuning constitutive and pathological inflammation in the gut via the interaction of dietary nitrate and polyphenols with host microbiome". The International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology 81 (2016): 393-402. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocel.2016.10.021.
    10.1016/j.biocel.2016.10.021
  9. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Correia, Mariana G.; Fernandes, Rita C.; Gonçalves, João S.; Laranjinha, João. "Dietary nitrite induces occludin nitration in the stomach". Free Radical Research 50 11 (2016): 1257-1264. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10715762.2016.1234049.
    10.1080/10715762.2016.1234049
  10. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Lundberg, Jon O; Radi, Rafael; Laranjinha, João. "Role of nitrite, urate and pepsin in the gastroprotective effects of saliva". Redox Biology 8 (2016): 407-414. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.redox.2016.04.002.
    10.1016/j.redox.2016.04.002
  11. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Gago, Bruno; Barbosa, Rui M.; Cavaleiro, Carlos; Laranjinha, João. "Ethyl nitrite is produced in the human stomach from dietary nitrate and ethanol, releasing nitric oxide at physiological pH: potential impact on gastric motility". Free Radical Biology and Medicine 82 (2015): 160-166. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2015.01.021.
    10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2015.01.021
  12. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Nunes, Carla; Pereira, Cassilda; Barbosa, Rui M.; Laranjinha, João. "A shortcut to wide-ranging biological actions of dietary polyphenols: modulation of the nitrate–nitrite–nitric oxide pathway in the gut". Food & Function 5 8 (2014): 1646-1652. http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/c4fo00124a.
    10.1039/c4fo00124a
  13. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Gago, Bruno; Barbosa, Rui M.; Lundberg, Jon O.; Mann, Giovanni E.; Radi, Rafael; Laranjinha, João. "Pepsin is nitrated in the rat stomach, acquiring antiulcerogenic activity: A novel interaction between dietary nitrate and gut proteins". Free Radical Biology and Medicine 58 (2013): 26-34. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2012.12.017.
    10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2012.12.017
  14. Pereira, Cassilda; Ferreira, Nuno R.; Rocha, Bárbara S.; Barbosa, Rui M.; Laranjinha, João. "The redox interplay between nitrite and nitric oxide: From the gut to the brain". Redox Biology 1 1 (2013): 276-284. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.redox.2013.04.004.
    10.1016/j.redox.2013.04.004
  15. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Gago, Bruno; Barbosa, Rui M.; Lundberg, Jon O.; Radi, Rafael; Laranjinha, João. "Intragastric nitration by dietary nitrite: Implications for modulation of protein and lipid signaling". Free Radical Biology and Medicine 52 3 (2012): 693-698. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2011.11.011.
    10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2011.11.011
  16. S. Rocha, Barbara; Gago, Bruno; Pereira, Cassilda; M. Barbosa, Rui; Bartesaghi, Silvina; O. Lundberg, Jon; Radi, Rafael; Laranjinha, Joao. "Dietary Nitrite in Nitric Oxide Biology: A Redox Interplay with Implications for Pathophysiology and Therapeutics". Current Drug Targets 12 9 (2011): 1351-1363. http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/138945011796150334.
    10.2174/138945011796150334
  17. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Gago, Bruno; Barbosa, Rui M.; Laranjinha, João. "Diffusion of nitric oxide through the gastric wall upon reduction of nitrite by red wine: Physiological impact". Nitric Oxide 22 3 (2010): 235-241. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.niox.2010.01.003.
    10.1016/j.niox.2010.01.003
  18. Rocha, Bárbara S.; Gago, Bruno; Barbosa, Rui M.; Laranjinha, João. "Dietary polyphenols generate nitric oxide from nitrite in the stomach and induce smooth muscle relaxation". Toxicology 265 1-2 (2009): 41-48. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tox.2009.09.008.
    10.1016/j.tox.2009.09.008
  19. Gago, Bruno; Nyström, Thomas; Cavaleiro, Carlos; Rocha, Bárbara S.; Barbosa, Rui M.; Laranjinha, João; Lundberg, Jon O.. "The potent vasodilator ethyl nitrite is formed upon reaction of nitrite and ethanol under gastric conditions". Free Radical Biology and Medicine 45 4 (2008): 404-412. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2008.04.027.
    10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2008.04.027
Activities

Oral presentation

Presentation title Event name
Host (Event location)
2018/06/07 Dietary nitrate modulates gut microbiota profile and prevents the activation of mucosal inflammatory pathways induced by broad-spectrum antibiotics. 19th Biennial Meeting of the Society for Free Radical Research International
(Lisbon, Portugal)
2017/06/08 Interacção entre o microbiota intestinal e o hospedeiro durante antibioterapia: novas vias de sinalização com impacto na homeostasia gastrointestinal. Semana Digestiva 2017, Congresso da Sociedade Portuguesa de Gastrenterologia.
Sociedade Portuguesa de Gastrenterologia. (albufeira, Portugal)
2015/09/02 Gut microbiome is rescued by dietary nitrate during dysbiosis: the impact on epithelial fence function and inflammatory pathways during antibiotic therapy. European Meeting of the Society for Free Radical Research.
(Stuttgart, Germany)
2014/11/07 The microbiota-gut-brain-axis: from kitchen to bedside. Cérebro e suas (Dis)funções. Congresso do Núcleo de Estudantes de Farmácia.
(Coimbra, Portugal)
2014/06/05 A shortcut to comprehensive health benefits of dietary polyphenols: the nitrate-nitrite-nitric oxide pathway. 8th World Congress on Polyphenols Applications.
(lisboa, Portugal)
2014/05/16 The nitrate-nitrite-nitric oxide pathway and gut microbiota on gastric protein nitration: implications for peptic ulcer disease. Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology Seminars - Summer Series.
(Coimbra, Portugal)
2013/04/18 Pepsin is nitrated in the stomach acquiring anti-ulcerogenic activity: a novel nitrating pathway involving dietary nitrite, gut microbiota and gastric proteins. 47th Annual Scientific Meeting of the European Society for Clinical Investigation.
(Albufeira, Portugal)
2012/09/08 Pepsin is nitrated in the stomach acquiring anti-ulcerogenic activity: a novel nitrating pathway involving dietary nitrite, gut microbiota and gastric proteins. 16th Biennial Meeting of the Society for Free Radical Research International.
(London, United Kingdom)
2011/09/08 Dietary nitrite is a nitrating agent in the stomach and generates anti-ulcerogenic compounds in vivo. European Meeting of the Society for Free Radical Research.
(Istanbul, Turkey)
2011/07/12 Pepsinogen is nitrated in the stomach in vivo: a dual function for dietary nitrate with functional and physiological consequences. Physiology 2011 – Annual Meeting of the Physiological Society.
(Oxford, United Kingdom)
2011/06/16 Pepsinogen is nitrated in the stomach in vivo: modulation by NSAIDs, oral bacteria and salivary nitrite. 4th Symposium on Nutrition, Oxygen Biology and Medicine
(Paris, France)
2010/12/20 Nitration of pepsinogen in vivo under acute gastric inflammation: dietary nitrate as a key modulator of nitration in the stomach. Annual Meeting of the Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology.
(Coimbra, Portugal)

Supervision

Thesis Title
Role
Degree Subject (Type)
Institution / Organization
2021 - Current Helicobacter pylori eradication therapy in Portugal: prospective, randomised, blind and multi centre trial on the efficacy of quadruple therapies and their clinical impact and immunological, oral and gut microbiota changes.
Co-supervisor
2020 - Current Impact of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency associated with acute pancreatitis and pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy on gut microbiota, immunological changes and quality of life: longitudinal prospective study and randomised double blind placebo control clinical trial.
Co-supervisor

Event organisation

Event name
Type of event (Role)
Institution / Organization
2019/06/19 - 2019/06/21 Organisation of the symposium "The microbiota-gut-brain axis: a journey from dietary nitrate to nitric oxide via inorganic nitrite" at the 2019 annual Meeting of the Society for Free Radical Research (SFRRE). Ferrara, Italy. (2019/06/19 - 2019/06/21)
Symposium (Co-organisor)
2018/06/04 - 2018/06/07 Organisation of the “Early Career Symposium” at the 19th Meeting of the Society for Free Radical research International (2018/06/04 - 2018/06/07)
Seminar (Co-organisor)
2015/09/01 - 2015/09/04 Organisation of the "SFRRE/SFN Early Carrer Investigators Forum” at the Annual meeting of the Society for Free Radical Research, Stuttgart, Germany (2015/09/01 - 2015/09/04)
Symposium (Co-organisor)

Event participation

Activity description
Type of event
Event name
Institution / Organization
2016/07/29 - 2016/07/31 Dietary nitrate modulates gut microbiome profile and prevents the activation of mucosal inflammatory pathways induced by broad-spectrum antibiotics.
Congress
Physiology 2016 - Annual Meeting of the Physiological Society
2014/12/17 - 2014/12/20 The nitrate-nitrite-nitric oxide pathway: reshaping gut microbiota and mucosal homeostasis under dysbiosis.
Congress
XVIII Congress of the Portuguese Biochemical Society
2014/11/19 - 2014/11/23 Dietary nitrate reshapes gut microbiota and attenuates gastric mucosal inflammation during dysbiosis.
Congress
21st Annual Meeting of the Society for Free Radical Biology and Medicine

Jury of academic degree

Topic
Role
Candidate name (Type of degree)
Institution / Organization
2018 Staphylococcus aureus meticilina resistente: gene mecC e susceptibilidade à vancomicina
(Thesis) Arguer
Raquel Catarina Saraiva Diaz (PhD)
Universidade de Aveiro, Portugal
2016 Uma abordagem epigenética à determinação da idade de amostras biológicas: potenciais aplicações forenses
(Thesis) Main arguer
Sílvia Vale (Master)
Universidade de Aveiro, Portugal
2014 Fingolimod a real world experience
(Thesis) Main arguer
Joaquim Fonseca (Master)
Universidade de Aveiro, Portugal

Association member

Society Organization name Role
2018 - Current Ordem dos Médicos
2015 - Current Society for Free radical Research Europe
2010 - Current Sociedade Portuguesa de Bioquímica Part of direction board since 2018
2010 - Current The Physiological Society
2009 - 2013 Society for Free Radical Biology and Medicine

Committee member

Activity description
Role
Institution / Organization
2021 - Current Organising committee of the IUBMB-FEBS-PABMB Young Scientists Forum, Portugal, 2022 The IUBMB-FEBS-PABMB Young Scientists Forum will bring together 120 selected young researchers in biochemistry and molecular biology, who will be supported to attend by grants from FEBS, IUBMB and PABMB and will precede The Biochemistry Global Summit in Lisbon (July 2022)

Evaluation committee

Activity description
Role
Institution / Organization Funding entity
2019 - 2019 Evaluation and selection of abstracts for oral communication at the 26th meeting of the Society for Free radical Biology and Medicine (SFRBM), USA
Evaluator
2018 - 2018 Evaluation and selection of abstracts for oral presentation at the 25th meeting of the Society for Free radical Biology and Medicine (SFRBM), Chicago, USA
Evaluator

Other jury / evaluation

Activity description Institution / Organization
2015 - Current Reviewer of scientific manuscripts in several peer-reviewed journals, such as The Journal of Physiology, International Journal of Cardiology, Free Radical Biology and Medicine, Nitric Oxide Biology & Chemistry, Free Radical Research, Journal of Infectiology and International Journal of Food Science
Distinctions

Award

2016 Travel award
The Physiological Society, United Kingdom
2014 Best Poster presentation
2014 Travel award
The Physiological Society, United Kingdom
2011 Young investigator award
2011 Travel award
The Physiological Society, United Kingdom
2010 Best oral presentation
Federation of the European Biochemical Societies, Portugal
2010 Travel award
Federation of the European Biochemical Societies, Portugal