After obtaining a master degree in Biological Science from the University of Genoa (Italy), with a thesis on “The effect of specific PKC agonists on cytochrome P450 1A1 isoform induction in a hepatocytes cell line”, I stayed on at the Physiopathology Research and Analysis laboratory as a PhD student. In 2003, after completing a thesis on the natural tocopherol analogues and their influence on signal transduction and gene expression in collaboration with the University of Bern (Switzerland), I obtained a short term fellowship from FEBS on the “Role of tocopherol associated protein (TAP) on PPAR induction”, before moving to the Royal Veterinary College in London.
Here my research was focused on how different fatty acids present in our diet carried in chylomicron remnants can promote macrophages foam cell formation by influencing different molecular events. In particular I was interested in modulation of transcription factors such as PPAR and NF-kB and inflammation response.
In 2009, I joined the Wallenberg Lab, in Gothenburg University (Sweden) where I expanded my interest to the inflammatory side of atherosclerosis and to the possible link between lipid accumulation, inflammation and lipotoxicity in macrophages foam cell formation, and the influence of different fatty acids on these mechanisms.
I am now joining Westminster University, after a career break for family reasons thanks to a Daphne Jackson Trust fellowship. I will be working on a project on the effect of endogenous peptides (urocortins) on bone and cartilage cells and I am looking forward to new stimulating challenges that will arise in the next few years to come.