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Tel.: +39 095.6139914



PhD in “Evolutionary and environmental biology” XXVI cycle and in “Biochemical and Biomolecular Sciences” XXI cycle at University of Catania. Master degree cum laude in Molecular Biology (2005).


Main research interests:

  • Investigation of physiological mechanisms of typical Mediterranean plant species subjected to abiotic stresses;
  • Investigation of germination response and seed dormancy in wild herbaceous plants;
  • Gene expression analysis during plant key developmental steps through traditional and new-generation (“-omics”) biomolecular and bioinformatics techniques;
  • Molecular characterization of populations and genotypes for molecular breeding purposes in agro-industrial and nutraceutical fields.


Field and laboratory activities:

  • Field selection of critical endemic genotypes for the improvement of the germplasm bank;
  • Preparation and direction of experimental investigations on germination physiology of herbaceous species;
  • Analysis of gene expression of specific metabolic pathways and/or on transcriptomes;
  • Genotyping at species or population level through molecular markers.


Research support activities

  • Active collaboration with several national and international research institutes and universities;
  • Participation to the activities of 11 national projects to company and university partnerships;
  • Support for the preparation, presentation and writing of several national and international research projects proposals
  • Tutorship of several internships and co-supervision of bachelor and master degrees with University of Catania.


CNR-PEOPLE profile

ORCID profile

Recent selected publications:

  • Hybrid transcriptome sequencing approach improved assembly and gene annotation in Cynara cardunculus (L.). BMC Genomics. 2020;21:317. doi:10.1186/s12864-020-6670-5.
  • MYB5-like and bHLH influence flavonoid composition in pomegranate. Plant Science. 2020;298:110563. doi:10.1016/j.plantsci.2020.110563.
  • Cynara cardunculus L. as a multipurpose crop for plant secondary metabolites production in marginal stressed lands. Frontiers in Plant Science. 2020;11:240. doi:10.3389/fpls.2020.00240.
  • Seed transcriptome annotation reveals enhanced expression of genes related to ROS homeostasis and ethylene metabolism at alternating temperatures in wild cardoon. Plants. 2020;9:1–19. doi:10.3390/plants9091225.
  • Extending rnaSPAdes functionality for hybrid transcriptome assembly. BMC Bioinformatics. 2020;21:302. doi:10.1186/s12859-020-03614-2.
  • Seed dormancy and control of germination in Sisymbrella dentata (L.) O.E. Schulz (Brassicaceae). Plant Biology. 2018. 1111/plb.12862
  • Local climate explains degree of seed dormancy in Hypericum elodes (Hypericaceae). Plant Biology. 2016. 10.1111/plb.12310


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