ICVS aspires to boost its
complete research
pipeline to create scientific knowledge
and value, producing

Research Outputs that
improve Clinical Outcomes.

The Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS) is the R&D Unit of the School of Medicine, University of Minho, strategically located within a fast-growing Cluster of Biomedical Science, Technology and Healthcare organizations. Researchers with complementary academic backgrounds are presently working at the ICVS, covering the complete R&D pipeline, from in vitro research, to animal models and pre-clinical validation, to clinical trials, and finally to reach the market as innovative medical solutions.

Over the last decade, the ICVS progressively and strategically developed a healthcare cluster to strengthen its biomedical and translational research. This consisted in the creation of three main centers: the Clinical Academic Center, that expanded ICVS activities to clinical research; the Digital Medicine Center P5, an online healthcare center to manage population health in a simple, intuitive and innovative way; and the Braga-Health, Innovation and Science Association, a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship that ensures technology transfer into the market. These actions were in line with the mission of the School of Medicine of University of Minho, as well as with the national public policies of the “Agenda Temática de Investigação e Inovação – Saúde, Investigação Clínica e de Translação” and the 2030 Thematic Agenda for Clinical and Translational Research and Innovation.

Along with its several spin-offs, ICVS aims to contribute as a key stakeholder for the upholding of a competitive Cluster in Biomedical Science, Technology and Healthcare, steered by the School of Medicine. Aligned with this vision, ICVS aspires to boost its complete research pipeline to create scientific knowledge and value, producing Research Outputs that improve Clinical Outcomes.

& Leadership

The ICVS is organized into research thematic teams, aggregating research projects and human resources, with specific objectives and strategies, and lead by a team coordinator. The ICVS has its own governing bodies, according to the rules for research units integrated in the national system of Science and Technology, and includes: 1) the Director of the ICVS; 2) The Direction of the ICVS, the collegial body representative of the ICVS and responsible for its overall management and coordination, which has the following composition: the Director, who presides; the Vice-President of the School of Medicine for Research; the ICVS Vice-Directors, and the elected representative among the team coordinators, and 3) The Scientific Council of the ICVS.

The ICVS also integrates the Scientific External Advisory Committee, constituted by 6 personalities of recognized international merit and with expertise in the scientific areas of knowledge of the ICVS. The role of the Scientific External Advisory Committee includes following the functioning of the ICVS, providing feedback on the ICVS annual plan, activities report and budget, and to advise on the definition of the constitution of the evaluation committees of the ICVS Teams.

Agostinho Carvalho


Fátima Baltazar


Research Cluster


Support Units

Administrative Unit

The Administrative Unit is the unit where all administrative acts/procedures and technical advice take place in four sectors of activity: Projects’ Applications Management; Financial Projects Management; Scientific Outputs; and Human Resources.

Animal Facility Unit

The Animal Facility Unit is certified by DGAV and includes modern infrastructures prepared for the maintenance of rodents and large animals used for scientific and training purposes.

Laboratorial Unit

The Laboratorial Unit supports a platform of equipment and services to meet the daily challenges of an innovative research institute.

& Internationalization Unit

The ICVS benefits from the structures of the School of Medicine dedicated to communication and internationalization.

External Scientific Advisory Committee

The External Scientific Advisory Committee role is to provide feedback on the ICVS plan of activities and budget, as well as to advise regarding the evaluation committees of the ICVS Teams. The External Scientific Advisory Committee members are:

Doctor of Medicine. He is the chief of the research group humoral immunity, lymphocytes and immunity at the Institut Pasteur, Paris. Member of COMESP, Institut Pasteur, Paris.


Paulo Vieira


Doctor of Medicine and Surgery and specialist in Immunology. She is a Full Professor of Immunology at the University of Vigo, in Spain.


África González

Doctor of Public Health Microbiology. He is a Professor in the Departments of Oncology and Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Director of the Division of Cancer Epidemiology, and Chairman of the Department of Oncology, at McGill University's Faculty of Medicine, in Montreal, Canada.


Eduardo Franco

Doctor in the field of cell aging. Founder and leader of the Christian Doppler Laboratory on Biotechnology of Skin Aging at the Department of Biotechnology at BOKU. He is an Associate Professor at BOKU and the director of the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Experimental and Clinical Traumatology (LBI Trauma) at the AUVA Research Center.


Johannes Grillari

Doctor of Medicine and Neurology. His focus is on neurodegenerative diseases, specifically dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Established a neurodegenerative outpatient unit at both the University of Münster and the University of Bonn in Germany. Director of the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB) at the University of Luxembourg.


Michael T. Heneka

PhD on Genetic. He is the Chief Scientific Officer at Alector, San Francisco, CA, focusing on novel therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases and cancer: https://alector.com/ about-us/leadership/


Peter Heutink