Ana Raquel P. Santa Maria received her M.Sc. in Bioengineering from University of Algarve Portugal, and Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from the University of Szeged, Hungary. During her Ph.D. she studied the role of brain endothelial surface charge and glycocalyx in the function and integrity of the blood-brain barrier using an organ-on-a-chip device. As a Wyss Technology Development Fellow, Ana works in the Brain Targeting Program, where she leads the discovery effort to identify novel brain transport targets. The target discovery team is searching for transport proteins that are highly expressed and enriched on brain endothelial cells compared with peripheral endothelial cells from other organs. The team uses transcriptomic and proteomics data combined with bioinformatic approaches to identify and rank top proteins that are specific for the brain. Their goal is to use these novel transport proteins for drug delivery into the brain. Her goal is to contribute to new treatments for brain diseases by improving delivery of brain-targeted therapeutics. Besides that, she is passionate about science communication and an active mentor for several students.
Ana Raquel P. Santa Maria, Ph.D.
Technology Development Fellow