Marta Tacão
Isabel Henriques, Isabel Silva, Rafael Tavares
COSMIC- Chemical contamination effect on soil microbiome: exploring a contamination gradient adjoining the Estarreja industrial complex
Limited knowledge on the global impact of chemical contaminants in environmental compartments weakens the outlining of efficient and rational ways of management, as also of the use of resources that could significantly reduce this environmental and public health threat.
Anthropogenic activities have generated unique soils with variable characteristics. Furthermore, it has been shown that microbial communities alter their compositional and functional traits to adapt to such variations. The main aim of the COSMIC project is to evaluate the impact of anthropogenic contamination on soil ecosystems in the vicinities of the Estarreja industrial complex. For that we will analyse soils along a contamination gradient (from the closest to the furthest location regarding the industrial complex) and determine variations on soil microbial communities and evaluate these ecosystem services under these adverse conditions.

Projet OHMs
OHM(s) concerné(s)
  • Estarreja
Biologie, Chimie, Écologie, Génétique, Santé publique


Marta Tacão is a Researcher at the Biology Department (Microbiology Laboratory, microlab) and the Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM), at the University of Aveiro, Portugal, hired under the Scientific Employment Stimulus (CEEC 2017) since 2019. Since 2014, she holds a PhD in Biology (specialization in microbiology), from the University of Aveiro, Portugal. She has participated in several projects hired under their scope or as team member, financed by FCT (7), LAbex DRIIHM (2), and European commission (2). Currently she is the PI at UA of a FCT-funded project. Co-authored 25 papers in Web of Science (WoS) journals, with average citations per paper 20.00 and h-index is 13 (WoS, December 2019) and presented over 40 communications in international and national meetings. She supervises/co-supervises 3 PhD, 5 Msc and 1 final project students, and has supervised 5 Msc and 7 final projects. Her research has been focused on understanding the role and impact of human activities in the dispersion of clinically relevant bacteria and antibiotic resistance in environmental settings, identification of the routes of dissemination and impact of contaminants.



PhD in biology, MsC in molecular microbiology and Degree in Biology;
Currently she is an assistant Professor at the Department of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Coimbra, Portugal.
She has published 89 papers in international peer-reviewed journals, 3 book chapters, over 100 oral and/or poster presentations in both national and international congresses, 14 projects participations; h-index: 22
Main interests: ecology of antibiotic resistance, role of anthropogenic activities in the proliferation of resistance in aquatic systems, environmental reservoirs and sources of antibiotic resistance and mobile genetic elements encoding resistance in environmental bacteria.
MsC in Microbiology
Degree in Biology
Research Grant Holder in Project “METOXCLIM - Metal contamination in a global warming perspective: effects on soil properties and relation with toxicity changes” 01/2019-present;
Team member in Project “MICROCLIM - Effects of global warming on microbial populations from contaminated agricultural soils in the area of Estarreja” – 01/2019-present;
Research Grant Holder in Project “Antibiotic resistance in aquatic systems: quantify risks and outline solutions” (IF/00492/2013) – 06-09/2018;
3 papers in international peer-reviewed journals, 1 communication in a national journal, 6 oral and/or poster presentations in both national and international congresses.
Main interests: Antimicrobial resistance in microbial strains and complex communities; dissemination of genetic determinants of antibiotic resistance in environmental compartments; characterization of microbial communities in natural environments; impact of anthropogenic contaminants on microbial communities.
MsC in Microbiology (in progress)
Degree in Biology
2 papers in international peer-reviewed journals, 3 oral and/or poster presentations in both national and international congresses; h-index: 2.
Main interests: Antibiotic resistance in environmental compartments; Anthropogenic activities and their effect on bacterial resistance; Mobile genetic elements and their success on the spread of resistance.