I was born in Florence (Tuscany) and studied there to PhD level. I have worked in San Francisco, Ferrara, Rome, Sassari, and Boston before arriving in Bristol in 2005.
Currently, I am a British Heart Foundation (BHF) Senior Research Fellow; Full Professor and Chair of Vascular pathology and Regeneration at the University of Bristol and Visiting Professor at the Imperial College of London. I am also Deputy Head of Research in the School of Clinical Sciences-Bristol. Finally, I am the Bristol coordinator of a BHF centre of Regenerative Medicine, which involves Edinburgh (coordinating centre), Bristol, Glasgow and the KCL.
I am a Fellow of the American Heart Association (FAHA) and part of the editorial boards of Circ Res, ATVB and Vascular Pharmacology. I am Academic Editor for Plos One. I do a lot (possibly too much) of work as a referee for articles and grant applications, including at international level.
I am an internationally leader in the field of vascular biology. My background is in pharmacology (from PhD studies) and therapeutic angiogenesis. I have developed my interest and expertise for angiogenesis and vascular biology under the mentorship of Professor Maurizio Capogrossi in Rome. I had the privilege to be part of the team of Jeff Isner (for the last year of his life as he died prematurely in 2001) in Boston. That was “the lab” if you were interested in reparative angiogenesis by gene and cell therapy, as he was pioneering the field. I have worked on-off with Professor Paolo Madeddu for several years, before we joined together the University of Bristol in 2005. Our collaboration is still active, even if our research interests have been progressively diverging.
I am a PhD scientist. Nonetheless, all of my past mentors were clinical academics and I have always been embedded in clinical institutes. This, which I used to consider a limit (because "nobody is able to teach me molecular biology!” and “I have enough to do all this in vivo work, I want to do PCR!”) to my early career, has later proven a true advantage. My work is becoming very translational. This is facilitated by being located in the Bristol Royal Infirmary (my office and laboratory are indeed inside the hospital), where I am “physically” attached to clinical colleagues with interest for research. The Bristol NIHR BRU in cardiovascular medicine further facilitates the bridging of basic and clinical research interests. Moreover, I have recently taken a visiting professorship at the Imperial College of London, where I work in collaboration with Professor Gianni Angelini and other key persons at the college and at the MRC Clinical Sciences Centre.
If you are interested in my CV, you can find this (in a very short form) below.
EDUCATION/TRAINING University of Florence, Italy BSc in Biological Science (1987-92) University of California San Francisco, CA, USA travel fellowship (1995) University of Catania (awarding institution for a multicentric PhD program including Florence and Cagliari Universities), Italy PhD in Neurovegetative Medicine/Pharmacology (1996-1999) IDI-Rome, Italy (postdoc) (1998-1999)
- Laboratory Director, Italian National Institute of Biosystem and Biostructures,Alghero,Italy(2001-05)
- Senior Lecturer and BHF Basic Science Lecturer, Universityof Bristol(2005-2008)
- Reader and BHF Basic Science Lecturer,UniversityofBristol(2008-2010)
- Italian Society of Cardiology (SIC) International Fellowship (2001)
- American Heart Association New European Investigator Travel Award (2001)
- European Vascular Genomics Network of Excellence (EVGN) membership (2003)
- British Heart Foundation Basic Science Lectureship (2005)
- Editorial Boards of British Journal of Pharmacology (20006-2009), Circulation Research (since 2007), Vascular Pharmacology (since 2008), ATVB (since 2008) and PlosOne (since 2010)
- Fellow of the American Heart Association (FAHA) (2007)
- Elected to the Bristol Heart Institute steering committee (2008)
- Michel Davis Early-Career prize (2009)
- Circulation Research Top Review Award (golden category: 2009 and 2011; platinum category: 2010)
- BHF Basic Science Senior Research Fellow (2010)