patriciafigueiredoCurrent positions:

  • Coordinator, Biomedical Engineering Lab (LaSEEB), Institute for Systems and Robotics – Lisboa (ISR-Lisboa)
  • Tenured Assistant Professor, Department of Bioengineering, Instituto Superior Técnico, Universidade de Lisboa


  • Email:
  • Phone :+351-218418277 (Internal: 2277)
  • Office: 6.22 (North Tower, 6th floor)


Researcher profile:  

Research interests:

I am interested in developing non-invasive neuroimaging techniques for the study of human brain function, with an emphasis on specific clinical applications. In one line of research, I seek to obtain quantitative measures of brain function by evaluating cerebral physiology and cerebrovascular dynamics through the integration of multiple, complementary functional MRI (fMRI) techniques for imaging cerebral perfusion, cerebrovascular reactivity and blood oxygenation, as well as neuronal activity. Another line of research involves the combination of the electroencephalogram (EEG) with fMRI, with the aim of assessing both the spatial and temporal dynamics of functional networks across the whole brain. Overall, I expect that these developments will help elucidate the investigation of pathology in individual patients, leading to the identification of biomarkers for specific neurological and psychiatric conditions, particularly epilepsy and migraine, cerebrovascular diseases associated with dementia, and schizophrenia, as well as healthy aging.

Main current research lines:

Bio sketch:

I graduated in Physics and Engineering from Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) at the Technical University of Lisbon, completed the post-graduation in Biophysics and Biomedical Engineering at the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon, and subsequently obtained the D.Phil. degree in Neuroimaging from the University of Oxford, where I worked with Prof. Peter Jezzard at the Centre for Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Brain (FMRIB). I was then invited lecturer at Thammasat University, in Thailand, before returning to Portugal as a post-doctoral researcher at the Institute for Biomedical Imaging and Life Sciences (IBILI), of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Coimbra. I am currently a tenured Assistant Professor at the Department of Bioengineering at IST, of the University of Lisbon, with habilitation in Biomedical Engineering by the same school, and the coordinator of the Evolutionary Systems and Biomedical Engineering Lab (LaSEEB) of the Institute for Systems and Robotics, Lisboa (ISR-Lisboa). I have also been an Honorary Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Neurology, University College London and a Visting Scientist at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne.

During the past ten years, I have been responsible and participated in several national and international research projects in brain imaging, neuroscience and biomedical engineering, and I have been the author of over 40 papers in international journals of high impact in these fields. My work has been distinguished with the Prize for Women in Science by L’Oréal Portugal, the 2nd best paper award by the Portuguese League against Epilepsy, and the António Xavier Prize for the best Portuguese PhD Thesis (as advisor) in NMR, EPR or MRI. I have (co-)supervised 11 PhD theses (6 completed) and more than 20 MSc theses. I have also been the vice-coordinator of the MSc programme in Biomedical Engineering at IST, where I am responsible for teaching graduate courses in Medical Imaging, Neuroimaging and Neuroengineering. Moreover, I participate in academic management activities within the university, including the Executive Committee of the Department of Bioengineering of IST, the Scientific Council of ISTand the Scientific Committee of ISR-Lisboa. Internationally, I have been actively involved with the European Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and Biology (ESMRMB) as a member of its Education Committee.

PhD Students:
  • Ana Fouto, Multimodal neuroimaging biomarkers through the migraine cycle. Co-supervision with Prof. Rita Nunes, Instituto Superior Técnico, Universidade de Lisboa, and Dr. Raquel Gil-Gouveia, Hospital da Luz (2019-present)
  • Amparo Ruiz-Tagle, Emotion processing throughout the migraine cycle. Co-supervision with Prof. Isabel Pavão-Martins, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de Lisboa (2018-present)
  • Mara Alves, More than the sum of its parts: exploring the neural and cognitive processes of semantic integration. Co-supervision with Prof. Ana Luísa Raposo, Faculdade de Psicologia, Universidade de Lisboa (2016-present)
  • Janir Ramos da Cruz, EEG signatures of schizophrenia: visual backward masking and microstates. Co-supervision with Prof. Michael Herzog, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) (2015-present)
  • Joana Pinto, Quantitative evaluation of cerebral haemodynamics using magnetic resonance imaging. Co-supervision with Dr. Pedro Vilela, Hospital da Luz (2014-present)
  • Rodolfo Abreu, Study of the spatiotemporal dynamics of epileptic activity using simultaneous EEG-fMRI: towards clinical applications. Co-supervision with Dr. Alberto Leal, Centro Hospitalar Psiquiátrico de Lisboa (2013-2017)
  • Teresa Murta, Investigation of the neurophysiological correlates of fMRI using simultaneous intracranial and scalp EEG. Co-supervision with Prof. Louis Lemieux and Prof. David Carmichael, University College London (2012-2016)
  • Marco Leite, Modelling human epileptic brain networks. Co-supervision with Prof. Louis Lemieux and Prof. Karl Friston, University College London (2012-2016)
  • João Jorge, Simultaneous EEG-fMRI at ultrahigh field for the study of human brain function. Co-supervision with Prof. Rolf Gruetter, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) (2011-2016)
  • Inês Sousa, Quantitative methods for functional magnetic resonance imaging. Co-supervision with Dr. João Seabra, Siemens S.A. (2009-2013)
  • Carlos Gomes, Unravelling consciousness using an inattentional blindness priming paradigm. Co-supervision with Prof. Andrew Mayes, University of Manchester (2008-2012)

Course teaching:

Research grants:
  • MIG_N2Treat: Multimodal neuroimaging biomarkers throughout the migraine cycle: towards neurofeedback training for personalized anti-migraine treatment (POR Lisboa 2020, 2018-2021)
  • NeuroPhysIm: Non-invasive quantitative imaging of cerebral physiology: application to normal aging and small vessel disease (FCT, 2013-2015)
  • HIFI-MRI: Analysis of functional brain connectivity using fMRI at ultra-high field (FCT, 2013-2015)
  • DynImag: Non-invasive Dynamic Neuroimaging in Epilepsy (FCT, 2011-2013)
  • NeuroImage: Neuroimaging investigation of learning mechanisms in the human brain: new methodological approaches (FCT, 2008-2011)
  • VisMem: Perceptual memory in the human visual system (BIAL, 2006-2010)
  • VisMemMCI: Perceptual memory in the human visual system: relation with other memory systems in health and mild cognitive impairment (FCT, 2005-2009)