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University of Porto Famous Alumni

José Eduardo Pinto da Costa

Fotografia de José Eduardo Pinto da Costa / Photo of José Eduardo Pinto da Costa José Eduardo Pinto da Costa
1934-
Doctor and university lecturer



José Eduardo Lima Pinto da Costa was born in Cedofeita, Porto, on 3 April 1934, to a well-off bourgeois family from Porto. He was the eldest son of 6 born to José Alexandrino Teixeira da Costa (1910-1977) and Maria Elisa Bessa Lima de Amorim Pinto (1913-1997).
He inherited a love for the Arts from his grandfather Honório Lima (1856-1939), whom he admired greatly, notably for music and painting. His most famous brother is Jorge Nuno Pinto da Costa, the president of the Porto Football Club.

Fotografia da Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade do Porto / Photo of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of PortoIn the academic year 1953-1954, José Eduardo enrolled in the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Porto, which he attended until 1960, when he concluded his higher degree in Medicine with the thesis entitled "Morte por Acção do Óxido de Carbono" (Death Caused by Carbon Dioxide), a medical-forensic medicine study which received a final mark of 18 out of 20 and was cited in the Interpol journals. His final average course mark was 16 out of 20 and he received his diploma on 17 October 1960.

In 1961, he took the post of Assistant Lecturer in Forensic Medicine and Forensic Toxicology (1961-1974). He then took a post-graduation higher degree course in Forensic Medicine in Porto and his PhD in 1973.

He was subsequently appointed Assistant Professor, Associate Professor (1979) and Full Professor (1996) at the Faculty of Medicine of Porto.

In 1975, he was appointed sub-director of the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Porto, and in the following year he became the director of this Institute.

At the end of the 1980s, Pinto da Costa was elected 1st President of the Board of Forensic Medicine of the Portuguese Medical Association, and chaired the Higher Forensic Medicine Council (1988- 1998).

He was the first Portuguese individuality to be rightly elected as Vice-President of the International Academy of Forensic Medicine and Social Medicine (1985-1991), at the General Assembly held in Budapest.

Fotografia do edifício do Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas Abel Salazar / Photo of the building of the Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel SalazarIn addition to the Faculty of Medicine in Porto, Pinto da Costa lectured at many other Portuguese faculties. He is also responsible for setting up the Master Course in Forensic Medicine, in the Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar, in 1999. He supervised several PhD theses, organized three international congresses, and coordinated and chaired the 9th meeting of the International Academy of Forensic Medicine, the only one held in Portugal, in Vila Real. He is proud to have conducted over thirty thousand autopsies throughout his working life.

Simultaneously with his academic activities and the medical practice, he is also linked to sports associations. He played football for Futebol Clube Infesta, between 1960 and 1962, was a member of the medical team in Futebol Clube do Porto, between 1970 and 1971, and is the Chairman of the General Assembly of the Portuguese Hockey Federation (2008-2012) and of the Boxing Association.
Although his true passion is Medicine, he has also been involved in Culture, Education and Law, and been an active member of the public and civil life.

Fotografia do edifício do Instituto de Medicina Legal do Porto / Photo of the building of the Institute of Forensic Medicine in PortoIn 1997, he left the General Medical Practice so that he could be wholly involved in Forensic Medicine (teaching, scientific research and expertise work). He is currently an Emeritus Professor of the Abel Salazar institute of Biomedical Sciences of the University of Porto.

This key player in the Forensic Medicine field is a member of many national and international scientific societies, and the author of a wealth of books and opinion articles published in the media.

He is married to Maria José Carneiro de Sousa Pinto da Costa, Professor of Forensic Medicine and Forensic Toxicology at the Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar and coroner in IMML. He is the father of four children.

José Eduardo Pinto da Costa is against abortion and in favour of women, and feels that, in biological terms, woman is superior to man, which is why she can perform several roles at the same time and lives longer. He believes that euthanasia is admissible if it is the express wish of an individual over a significant period of time.
(Universidade Digital / Gestão de Informação, 2009)

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