Leda C. Mendonça-Hagler
Leda Cristina Mendonca-Hagler obtained her B. Sc. Degree in Chemistry from the Federal Univ. of Sergipe, and the Ph. D. in Biological Sciences (Microbiology) from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, (UFRJ), Brazil. She did her Postdoctoral training on Yeast Biology at the University of California, Davis, (US), under the supervision of Prof. Herman Phaff, and on Molecular Microbial Ecology, at the Institute for Soil Fertility, Wageningen, (NL), with Prof. Jan D. van Elsas. Prof. L. Mendonça-Hagler, served on the faculty of the UFRJ for over four decades, where she was the Head of the General Microbiology Department, Chair of the Microbiology Graduate Program (IMPPG), Dean for Health Sciences Graduate Programs (CCS) and co-founder of Plant Biotechnology and Ecology Graduate Programs. She supervised 45 graduate students and published over 130 scientific papers, and book chapters, on yeast taxonomy, microbial ecology, biotechnology and biosafety. Her research group investigated the microbial diversity associated with tropical environments and the relationships between microbial community structures and ecosystem functions, applying multidisciplinary approaches.
These research topics continued to be developed at UFRJ. Prof. L. Mendonça-Hagler was a Guest Researcher at Georgia State University (US), working on yeast taxonomy, with Dr. Sally Meyer, and bacterial genetics at the Centers for Disease Control (US). She developed cooperation projects on environmental microbiology with Prof. J. D. van Elsas (NL), Prof. A. Martini (IT), and Prof. K. Smalla (DE). She organized several national and international scientific meetings, worked as board member of scientific societies, and served on the Editorial board of journals, such as ISME J, FEMS Yeast Research and Brazilian J. Microbiol. She was a member of the Brazilian Biosafety Commission, and other governmental advisory committees, and worked as a consultant for several companies.
Prof. Mendonca-Hagler received the award “Honor of the Scientific Merit” and the title of “Comendador” from the Brazilian Government, and awards from scientific societies. The Genus Hagleromyces and 3 yeast species were named in honor of A.N. Hagler and L.C. Mendonça-Hagler, in recognition of their contribution to yeast research. She was the Chair of the Int. Committee on Yeasts/IUMS, and currently is ICY Honorary member. She is Scientific Director of the Brazilian Biosafety Society, and Ambassador at the International Society for Microbial Ecology (ISME).