I am an Assistant Professor at the Department of Biology of the University of Naples “Federico II”, in Italy. My group aims to explore and understand the emergence and evolution of life and the co-evolution of the Geosphere and the Biosphere. I’ve been recently awarded a ERC Starting Grant to look at the co-evolution of biogeochemically-relevant proteins and trace metal availability in the environment called CoEVOLVE. Read more about the CoeVOLVE project here.
To this end in my lab we combine classic microbiology techniques with data from comparative genomic, phylogenetic, environmental surveys and computational approaches to reconstruct geo-bio interactions. The majority of our work is carried out in extreme environments, ranging from deep-sea and shallow-water hydrothermal vents, hot springs and volcanoes, the subsurface and Antarctica.
Our laboratory logo, an abstract representation of what we call “microbiology in planetary context”. Designed by Patricia Barcala Dominguez
Check out our research, our latest publications or our interactive map showing our field sites. Head to the team section to read more about myself and the rest of the fantastic people I work with. Also, don’t forget to take a look at the picture gallery or our outreach activities and appearance in the media. Take a look at the yearly report I post about my activities in the Year in Numbers section.
We are located at the University of Naples “Federico II”, the oldest public non-sectarian university in the world founded in 1224. We also interact with a number of world leading institutions, including Rutgers University, the Earth and Planet Laboratories A Carnegie Science, the Earth-Life Science Institute and the Italian CNR-IRBIM.
We are always looking for passionate new people to join the team (more info) !
A short video interview (in italian) recorded while I was in Iceland sampling the shallow water vents of Strytan appeared today on the Swiss Radio Television Website. You can see the fantastic full 4 minute interview on the RSI website12. May 2021
I recently appeared in an interview in the newspaper La Stampa speaking about the new Master Program in the Biology of Extreme Environments I have designed in Naples. The article is available online here22. Apr 2021
Our recent paper published in Nature Geoscience was covered by a news article in AAAS Science. Several colleagues comment on our findings and the impact of our ongoing research. Check it out at AAAS Science news18. Apr 2021
Our recent expedition to drill into the permafrost of Svalbard is covered by a short article on the University website UNINA News10. Apr 2021
I recently appeared in an interview in the journal Nature Italy speaking about the new Master Program in the Biology of Extreme Environments I have designed in Naples. The article is available both in English and Italian and can be found here