Leonor graduated in Biology at University of Porto (Portugal) in 2002. After a very broad degree covering from bacteria reproduction to plant taxonomy and animal ecology she decided to focus her post-graduate studies in Neuroscience.
From 2002 to 2003 Leonor worked as young researcher at University of Minho where she was introduced to the amygdala (a brain structure located in the temporal lobe and highly involved in the processing of emotions, fear and the emotional component of pain), which is still the focus of her research today.
In 2003 she spent 9 months as a trainee at Oregon Health and Science University (Neurosurgery Department: Portland Or, USA) where she learned single cell electrophysiology.
In 2009 she gained her PhD from University of Minho, Portugal and University of Helsinki, Finland. During her PhD she studied how the amygdala-medulla system of the brain changes in models of neuropathic pain.
Leonor has been a Post-Doc Research Associate since 2009 at University College London (Neuroscience, Physiology and Pharmacology Department). The focus of her research is brain plasticity associated with chronic pain with a special focus on how the amygdala (located in the temporal lobe and highly involved in the emotional processing of pain) changes after states of persistent pain and nerve injury and how it can influence the behaviour and responses to painful stimuli.
Besides research she has been teaching throughout her career, with subjects ranging from histology to neuroscience and pharmacology.
She is also active in public engagement and has spoken in several events directed to the general public and the neurosciences community.
Leonor is the co-chair for the UCL Neuroscience Careers Network since January 2018.