Chemical Education

Gender Equality




Investigator & Invited Assistant Professor of Chemistry


Institute of Bioengineering and Biosciences

Complexo Interdisciplinar, Instituto Superior Tecnico

Universidade de Lisboa

Av. Rovisco Pais, 1049-001 Lisboa - Portugal


Room 612 : +351 218 419 218 (direct) or 3218 (internal)

Laboratory: +351 218 419 684 (direct) or 3684 (internal)



2006 | PhD in Chemistry - Organic Chemistry in the Lobo-Prabhakar group at FCT/UNL (Portugal)

2006-2008 | Post-doc in the Scherf group at Institut fur Polymertechnologie (Germany)

2008-2012 | Assistant Researcher MIT Portugal at FCT/UNL (Portugal)

2012 | Visiting Researcher in the Hammond group at KI, MIT (USA)

2016 | Visiting Researcher in the Sandre group at LCPO, Bordeaux University (France)


Dr. Bonifacio was born in Luanda, Angola. He discovered polyurea (PURE-type) dendrimers and is the author of the QR-coded audio version of the Periodic Table of the Elements. In parallel to his research activity, he is also enrolled in the development of teaching tools for blind/ visually impaired and deaf students.

PURE dots: G4 Bonifacio dendrimer.


NANOMEDICINE | polymer therapeutics, cancer theranostics and radiotheranostics, regenerative nanomedicine

MOLECULAR ELECTRONICS | sensors, luminescent probes, green photovoltaics, organic supercapacitors

GREEN CHEMISTRY | mechanochemistry, sonochemistry, in-water reactions



2019 Outstanding Teaching Award (IST-UL)

2019 Research Fellowship in Multiple Myeloma (APCL, SPH, Amgen)

2017 Advanced Materials Scientist Medal (IAAM)

2017 Outstanding Teaching Award (IST-UL)


TEACHING 2019-2010

Introduction to Physical Chemistry | Biomedical Engineering

Physical Chemistry | Biological Engineering



Frontiers Nanobiotechnology, Review Editor

Polymers, Guest Editor

QUIMICA - Boletim SPQ, Editor



Portuguese Chemical Society

Royal Society of Chemistry

American Chemical Society

International Association of Advanced Materials



Biocompatible polyurea dendrimers with pH-dependent fluorescence, R.B. Restani, P.I. Morgado, M.P. Ribeiro, I.J. Correia, A. Aguiar-Ricardo, V.D.B. Bonifacio*, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2012, 51, 5162-5165.

Polyurea dendrimer-perylene self-imprinted nanoshells for trace explosives detection, A. Braganca, M. Araujo, V.D.B. Bonifacio*, Part. Part. Syst. Charact. 2015, 32, 98-103.

Nano-in-micro POxylated polyurea dendrimers and chitosan dry powder formulations for pulmonary delivery, R.B. Restani, A.S. Silva, R.F. Pires, R. Cabral, I.J. Correia, T. Casimiro, V.D.B. Bonifácio*, A. Aguiar-Ricardo*, Part. Part. Syst. Charact. 2016.

Benign by design: Catalyst-free in-water, on-water, green chemical methodologies in organic synthesis, M.B. Gawande*, V.D.B. Bonifacio*, R. Luque, P.S. Branco, R.S. Varma*, Chem. Soc. Rev. 2013, 42, 5522-5551.

Solvent-free and catalyst-free chemistry: A benign pathway to sustainability, M.B. Gawande*, V.D.B. Bonifacio*, R. Luque, P.S. Branco, R.S. Varma*, ChemSusChem 2014, 7, 24-44.

Dual on-off and off-on switchable oligoaziridine biosensor, V.P. Raje, P.I. Morgado, M.P. Ribeiro, I.J. Correia, V.D.B. Bonifacio*, P.S. Branco, A. Aguiar-Ricardo*, Biosen. Bioelectron. 2013, 39, 64-69.

Molecular weight determination by luminescent chemoenzymatics, R.F. Pires,  A. Moro, A. Lourenco, J.C. Lima, T. Casimiro*, V.D.B. Bonifacio*, ChemistrySelect 2016, 1, 6818–6822.

Ultrasensitive microchip sensor based on boron-containing polyfluorene nanofilms, C. Ribeiro*, P. Brogueira, G. Lavareda, C.N. Carvalho, A. Amaral, L. Santos, J. Morgado, U. Scherf, V.D.B. Bonifacio*, Biosen. Bioelectron. 2010, 26, 1662-1665.


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