Ana Milhinhos

Ana Milhinhos - ForGen MemberFCT Investigador Júnior CEEC-IND 2017 at ITQB NOVA and Ciencias UL (2019 to present)

2018-2019 – Postdoc Researcher at CM Miguel Lab (Ciências ULisboa, Portugal)

2015 to 2017 – Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellow at J Agustí Lab (University of Oxford, Oxford, UK)

2015 – Postdoc researcher at H Tuominen Lab (Umeå Plant Science Centre/Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden)

2008-2013 – PhD student at CM Miguel Lab (ITQB NOVA, Oeiras, Portugal)


PhD 2013 in Biology spec. Molecular Biology, Universidade Nova de Lisboa

Phone (+351) 217 500 000 | Extension 22458

Email (FCUL)  Email (ITQB) | Website 


ORCID | ResearcherID

Research Interests

I am a plant biologist, with a focus on tree development, namely concerning the molecular and genetics of wood and cork tissues development. I mainly use Arabidopsis, Populus, pine and cork oak as working systems.
The largest percentage of plant biomass on Earth surface exists in the form of wood. Although wood is (i) one of the most important natural renewable resources, as well as (ii) the most promising way to mitigate the current climate crisis, by the sequestration of carbon in long-living plant organisms (such as trees); the developmental, molecular and genetic processes that underlie wood formation are still very scarcely known. Therefore, my scientific activity focuses on understanding the molecular basis of secondary growth in woody species. As the increase in thickness of plant stems is the outcome of the activity of the lateral meristems – stem cell niches called vascular cambium and cork cambium; the aim of my research is to unravel the molecular machinery behind (i) the cambial activity, (ii) the specification and (iii) differentiation of cells, derived from the cambium.

Latest Publications

Alves A, Confraria A, Lopes S, Costa B, Perdiguero P, Milhinhos A, Baena-González E, Correia S, Miguel CM (2022) miR160 Interacts in vivo With Pinus pinaster AUXIN RESPONSE FACTOR 18 Target Site and Negatively Regulates Its Expression During Conifer Somatic Embryo Development. Front. Plant Sci. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2022.857611

Milhinhos A, Bollhöner B, Blazquez MA, Novák O, Miguel CM and Tuominen H (2020) ACAULIS5 Is Required for Cytokinin Accumulation and Function During Secondary Growth of Populus Trees. Front. Plant Sci. 11:601858. doi:

Ana Milhinhos and Pedro M Costa (2020) On the Progression of COVID-19 in Portugal: A Comparative Analysis of Active Cases Using Non-linear Regression. Front. Public Health 8:495. doi:

Ana Milhinhos, Susana Lopes, Célia Miguel (2020) microRNA-Mediated Regulation of Plant Vascular Development and Secondary Growth. In: Miguel C., Dalmay T., Chaves I. (eds) Plant microRNAs. Concepts and Strategies in Plant Sciences. Springer, Cham. doi:

Ana Milhinhos, Francisco Vera-Sirera, Noel Blanco-Touriñán, Cristina Mari-Carmona, Àngela Carrió-Seguí, Javier Forment, Clément Champion, Anna Thamm, Cristina Urbez, Helen Prescott, and Javier Agustí (2019) SOBIR1/EVR prevents precocious initiation of fiber differentiation during wood development through a mechanism involving BP and ERECTA. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 116 (37):18710-18716. doi:

Anna Thamm, Sabina Sanegre-Sans, Jennifer Paisley, Susana Meader, Ana Milhinhos, Sonia Contera and Javier Agusti (2019) A simple mathematical model of allometric exponential growth describes the early three-dimensional growth dynamics of secondary xylem in Arabidopsis roots. Royal Society Open Science. doi:

Rodrigues AR, Chaves I, Costa BV, Lin Y-C, Lopes S, Milhinhos A, Van de Peer Y, Miguel C. M. (2019) Small RNA profiling in Pinus pinaster reveals the transcriptome of developing seeds and highlights differences between zygotic and somatic embryos. Scientific Reports doi: https://10.1038/s41598-019-47789-y

Andreia Miguel, Ana Milhinhos, Ondřej Novák, Brian Jones, Célia M. Miguel (2016) The SHORT-ROOT-like gene PtSHR2B is involved in Populus phellogen activity, Journal of Experimental Botany, Volume 67, Issue 5, March 2016, Pages 1545–1555. doi:

Milhinhos A, Prestele J, Bollhoner B, Matos A, VeraSirera F, Rambla JL, Ljung K, Carbonell J, Blázquez MA, Tuominen H et al. (2013) Thermospermine levels are controlled by an auxindependent feedback loop mechanism in Populus xylem. The Plant Journal 75: 685– 698. doi:

Milhinhos, A. & Miguel, C.M. (2013) Hormone interactions in xylem development: a matter of signals. Plant Cell Rep 32: 867. doi: