The Programme

MedChemTrain is a unique PhD program designed to train the next generation of scientists to work at the interface between chemistry and biology at various stages of pre-clinical drug discovery.

It involves the Universities of Coimbra (UCoimbra) and Lisboa (ULisboa), in consortium with Bial, Bluepharma and Hovione, the three Portuguese pharmaceutical companies that dedicate a larger fraction of their income to internal R&D.

Both universities, which currently award the PhD degrees that will anchor the MedChemTrain program, are internationally recognized institutions hosting some of the largest and most reputed schools of science and technology in Portugal, such as the Faculties of Science and Technology (FCTUC) and Pharmacy (FFUC) at UCoimbra, and the Faculty of Pharmacy (FFUL) and Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) at ULisboa.

All have a solid record of providing top-quality higher education, and of conducting world-class state-of-the-art RD&I. The academic MedChemTrain team members are affiliated with these faculties, and some are experienced in implementing quality assurance and accreditation procedures for chemical and pharmaceutical science programs.

This joint initiative is supported by five world-class Portuguese research units, the Coimbra Chemistry Center (CCC) and Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology (CNC) at UCoimbra, the Research Institute for Medicines and Pharmaceutical Sciences (iMed.UL), Centro de Química Estrutural (CQE), and Instituto de Medicina Molecular (IMM) at ULisboa, that host unique research facilities, gather 690 integrated PhD members, secured 100 M€ from FCT and international R&D projects or industry contracts in 2008-2012, and rank among the R&D units with higher annual rates of ISI publications/member in the country.

The PhD programme is integrated in the :

  • Doctarate in Chemistry (Química Médica) of the Chemistry Department, Universidade de Coimbra
  • Doctarate in Chemistry of the Instituto Superior Técnico, Universidade de Lisboa
  • Doctarate in Pharmaceuticals Sciences of the Faculty of Pharmacy, Universidade de Coimbra
  • Doctorate in Pharmacy (Química Farmacêutica e Terapêutica) of the Faculty of Pharmacy, Universidade de Lisboa


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