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Personal profile

Research interests

My research interests are in the field of cancer biology and translational hematology. My research focuses on studying the signalling pathways involved in the development and drug resistance, identification of disease molecular signature and development of novel targeted therapy for haematological malignancies including acute myeloid, lymphoblastic and mixed lineage leukaemia.  

I started my research group at the University of Roehampton in 2017, when I was awarded the John Goldman fellowship funded by Leuka. At UR I have a small research group currently studying the contribution of phospho-signalling  in the development of chemotherapy resistance of leukemia and how molecular and pharmacological manipulation of this signalling can be exploited for development of successful therapeutic strategies. I have supervised and currently supervise post-docs, PhD, MSc, MRes and undergraduate students on this area of research.

My technical expertise spans from cellular and molecular biology techniques to histology, microscopy and flow cytometry. I have expertise in target validation and preclinical evaluation of drugs in leukemia models in vivo, ex vivo (Patient Derived Xenotransplants in 3D culture) and in vitro (cell lines, co-cultures). 


I graduated in Biotechnologies applied to Medicine at the University of Napoli (Italy) “Federico II” in 2004, after completing a 3-year laboratory training  in gene and stem cell therapy.  I conducted my PhD research at the European School of Molecular Medicine-CEINGEin Napoli, focusing on cancer and human genetics. There I characterized a rare population of stem cells within the mouse bone marrow, the mesenchymal stromal cells (BMSCs), investigating their self-renewal, differentiation and tumourigenic potential. To pursue my interest in the biology of stem cells and the molecular events underlying their transformation in cancer stem cells, I then joined as post-doc the team of Prof. Eric So at the Institute of Cancer Research, and eventually moved to King’s College London  in 2010 when the group transferred there. At King’s I studied the molecular pathways required for establishment and maintenance of Mixed Lineage Leukaemia (MLL) stem cells, contributing to validate Beta Catenin as a new therapeutic target for MLL through genetic (Knock out mice) and functional (shRNA) approaches. Building on these skills I established my own research domain within the team, working on how to exploit DNA damage repair defects to target leukemic stem cells while sparing the normal ones, an exciting and emerging field in leukaemia therapeutics. This work led to a patent filed in the UK in 2014 and a manuscript published in Nature Medicine in 2015. In 2015 I joined the University of East London as Lecturer in Biomedical science, where I taught Cellular and Clinical Biochemistry, Haematology and Cell Pathology and Advanced techniques in  the Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Biomedical Science, before joining as Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Science the University of Roehampton in 2017. 

- Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Science (Cancer Biology) Department of Life Sciences University of Roehampton (from October 2017)

- Lecturer Biomedical Science (Cancer Biology) School of Health, Sport and Bioscience University of East London (November 2015-September 2017)

 - Visiting Lecturer Biomedical Science Department of Life Sciences, University of Roehampton  (October 2015)

- Post-doctoral Research Associate Department of Haematological Medicine King’s College London (January 2010- August 2015)

- Post-doctoral Researcher Department of Haemato-Oncology Institute of Cancer Research  Sutton (September-December 2009)

- Visiting PhD student Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology, Imperial College London (September 2008-March 2009)

- Intern Research Assistant at Department of Biochemistry and Biotechnological Science CEINGE Biotecnologie Avanzate Napoli, Italy (October 2001-February 2005)


- 2016-2017 Postgraduate certification in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education University of East London. Passed with distinction.

- 2005-2009 PhD Molecular Medicine, SEMM European School of Molecular Medicine, CEINGE Biotecnologie Avanzate Napoli, Italy. Passed with no corrections.

- 1999-2004 Five- year Bachelor + Master’s degree in Biotechnological Science with a Major in Medicine, University of Napoli Federico II, Italy. First Class.

Professional affiliations

- Fellow of the Higher Education Academy since 2017

- Member of the British Society of Haematology since 2016

- Member of the European hameatology Association since 2016

- Fellow of the Institute of Biomedical Science since 2016

- Member of the Royal Society of Biology since 2016

- Member and ambassador of the European Association of Cancer Research since 2015

- Member of Association of Italian Scientists in UK since 2015

- Co-founder member of Airicerca since 2014




I started teaching in Higher Education during my PhD and I am very passionate about widening opportunities in academia. I work hard to help my students to build competence and confidence to pursue their own careers. I obtained a Postgraduate Certificates in Education in 2017, when I was also awarded Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy. In 2017 I was nominated as best dissertation supervisor. In 2018 I was nominated as Higher Education Bioscience Teacher of the year.

At the University of Roehampton I contribute to Cell biology, Professional Practice in Biomedical Science, Biomedical Science Clinical Methods, Molecular Biology Theory and Practice, Advances in Molecular Biology and Biotechnoloy, Research Methods (BSc in Biomedical Science) and Cells and disease (Mres in Biomedicine).



External positions

Member of the Communications Committee, British Society of Hematology

20 Mar 2017 → …


  • Q Science (General)
  • cancer biology
  • leukemia
  • gene therapy


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