Pietro Alano, Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Rome

Pietro Alano (Genova, Italy 26 May 1959) obtained his Ph.D. in cellular and molecular biology and bacterial genetics in 1986 at the University of Milan. Pietro entered the field of parasite molecular biology in 1985 at the course on Biology of Parasitism (Woods Hole, USA)and did his posdoc at the University of Edinburgh on the molecular mechanisms of Plasmodium falciparum gametocytogenesis. In 1991 Pietro moved to the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS), Rome, continuing his research on the malaria parasite transmission stages. Pietro’s team produced ‘omics’ datasets from different gametocyte maturation stages to investigate parasite interactions with human bone marrow cells and with the mosquito midgut. The molecular tools and markers developed in these studies enabled Pietro’s team to develop innovative cell based assays to screen for anti-P. falciparum gametocyte drugs, to identify targetable metabolic processes in the parasite transmission stages and to develop diagnostic tools for their detection in natural infections. Pietro contributed to create the Italian Malaria Network, joining malaria teams in ISS and in ten Italian universities, participated in EU supported malaria networks of excellence BioMalPar and EVIMalaR, and now represents Italy in the EU supported EDCTP Association. Funds for Pietro’s research are/have been provided by the FP6 and FP7 Programmes of the European Commission, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Italian Government. Pietro authored 89 publications in peer reviewed journals, H index 32 (webofknowledge.com, March 2019).

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