Francesco Cucca

Outgoing Director

H-index – January 2021- :70 (Scopus) 78 (Google scholar)

Education:

June 1989 University of Cagliari, Italy, Specialization in Pediatrics  (Score: 70/70 Cum Laude)
March 1985 University of Cagliari, Italy,  Degree in Medicine & Surgery (Score: 110/ 110 Cum Laude)

Work experience:

Jul 2011 – present Full Professor of Medical Genetics, University of Sassari, Italy
May 2009 – Jun 2019 Director of the Institute for Research in Genetics and Biomedicine (IRGB), of the National Research Council (CNR), Italy
Jan 2005 – Jun 2011 Associate Professor of Medical Genetics, University of Sassari, Italy
Jun 1998 – Dec 2004 Assistant Professor in Pediatrics, University of Cagliari, Head  Immunogenetics   group, Children’s Hospital, (“Ospedale Microcitemico”), Cagliari, Italy
Jan 1997 – May 1998 Senior Pediatrician, Pediatric Hospital ward, Ospedale Brotzu Cagliari, Italy
Jun 1994 – Dec 1996 Visiting Medical Researcher, Wellcome Trust for Human Genetics, Oxford University (UK)
Jan 1990 – May 1994 Staff Pediatrician, Pediatric Hospital ward, Ospedale Brotzu Cagliari,  Italy

Prizes & awards:

  • 2013 Invited to give a lecture entitled “Molecular genetics of autoimmunity and its clinical implications”, at a meeting dedicated to science, innovation and health at the Senate of the Italian Republic in Rome in the presence of the President of the Republic Giorgio Napolitano.
  • 1995 Special Commendation of the Examining Commission of the University of Cagliari during my graduation in Medicine

Other assignments:

2002 – present During the last 18 years I have served as reviewer for various scientific journals including: Nature Genetics, Nature Immunology, American Journal of Human Genetics, Lancet Neurology, European Journal of Human Genetics, Human Molecular Genetics, Diabetes.
2019 – present Member of the “Multiple Sclerosis Global Alliance” and of the “Experimental Medicine Trials Initiative”
2018 – present Member of the steering committee of the FISM (Italian Multiple Sclerosis Foundation
2014 – 2020 Vice-Chancellor for Research, University of Sassari
2010 – 2013 Member of the steering committee of the FISM

Organization of international scientific conferences

  • Since 2010, Organization and direction, with Marcella Devoto, of 8 International summer schools on advanced functional genomics in the Polaris Technology Park, Pula (CA). Each event involved over 100 participants including ~15 speakers of clear international prominence (from USA, UK, Germany, Iceland, Iran, Japan and Italy), ~ 50 international students and ~40 local attendees for seminars and symposia (https://www.irgb.cnr.it/summer-school/).
  • Organization with Marcella Devoto, of “The European Mathematical Genetics Meeting (EMGM)” in 2018 in Cagliari

Most significant publications:

My research activity has led to more than 200 peer-reviewed studies (for the full list see https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7414-1995)

  1. Orrù V, Steri M, Sidore C, Marongiu M, Serra V, Olla S, Sole G, Lai S, Dei M, Mulas A, Virdis F, Piras MG, Lobina M, Marongiu M, Pitzalis M, Deidda F, Loizedda A, Onano S, Zoledziewska M, Sawcer S, Devoto M, Gorospe M, Abecasis GR, Floris M, Pala M, Schlessinger D, Fiorillo E, Cucca F. Complex genetic signatures in immune cells underlie autoimmunity and inform therapy. Nature Genetics. 2020 Oct;52(10):1036-1045. doi: 10.1038/s41588-020-0684-4.
  2. Lodde V, Floris M, Beerman I, Munk R, Guha R, Steri M, Orrù V, Abdelmohsen K, Crompton PD, Gorospe M, Idda ML, Cucca F. Evolutionarily Selected Overexpression of the Cytokine BAFF Enhances Mucosal Immune Response Against P. falciparum. Frontiers in Immunology. 2020 Oct 6;11:575103. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2020.575103
  3. Marcus JH, Posth C, Ringbauer H, Lai L, Skeates R, Sidore C, Beckett J, Furtwängler A, Olivieri A, Chiang CWK, Al-Asadi H, Dey K, Joseph TA, Liu CC, Der Sarkissian C, Radzevičiūtė R, Michel M, Gradoli MG, Marongiu P, Rubino S, Mazzarello V, Rovina D, La Fragola A, Serra RM, Bandiera P, Bianucci R, Pompianu E, Murgia C, Guirguis M, Orquin RP, Tuross N, van Dommelen P, Haak W, Reich D, Schlessinger D, Cucca F*, Krause J*, Novembre J*. Genetic history from the Middle Neolithic to present on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia. Nature Communication. 2020 Feb 24;11(1):939. doi: 10.1038/s41467-020-14523-6.
  4. Idda ML, Lodde V, McClusky WG, Martindale JL, Yang X, Munk R, Steri M, Orrù V, Mulas A, Cucca F, Abdelmohsen K, Gorospe M. Cooperative translational control of polymorphic BAFF by NF90 and miR-15a. Nucleic Acids Research. 2018 Dec 14;46(22):12040-12051. doi: 10.1093/nar/gky866.
  5. Floris M, Olla S, Schlessinger D & Cucca F. “Genetic-Driven Druggable Target Identification and Validation”. Trends in Genetics. 2018 Jul;34(7):558-570. doi: 10.1016/j.tig.2018.04.004.
  6. Chiang C W K; Marcus J H; Sidore, C; Biddanda A; Al-Asadi, H; Zoledziewska M; Pitzalis M; Busonero, F; Maschio A; Pistis G; Steri M; Angius A; Lohmueller K E; Abecasis G R; Schlessinger,D; Cucca F & Novembre* J Genomic history of the Sardinian population Nature Genetics, 50 (10), pp. 1426–1434, 2018. Cover Issue of Nature Genetics
  7. Olivieri A, Sidore C, Achilli A, Angius A, Posth C, Furtwängler A, Brandini S, Capodiferro MR, Gandini F, Zoledziewska M, Pitzalis M, Maschio A, Busonero F, Lai L, Skeates R, Gradoli MG, Beckett J, Marongiu M, Mazzarello V, Marongiu P, Rubino S, Rito T, Macaulay V, Semino O, Pala M, Abecasis GR, Schlessinger D, Conde-Sousa E, Soares P, Richards MB, Cucca F*, Torroni A*. Mitogenome Diversity in Sardinians: A Genetic Window onto an Island’s Past. Mol Biol Evol. 2017 May 1;34(5):1230-1239. doi: 10.1093/molbev/msx082. PMID: 28177087; Cover Issue of Mol Biol Evol;
  8. Steri M, Orrù V, Idda ML, Pitzalis M, Pala M, Zara I, Sidore C, Faà V, Floris M, Deiana M, Asunis I, Porcu E, Mulas A, […..], Pani A, Hillert J, Sawcer S, D’Alfonso S, Todd JA, Novembre J, Abecasis GR, Whalen MB, Marrosu MG, Meloni A, Sanna S, Gorospe M, Schlessinger D, Fiorillo E, Zoledziewska M & Cucca F. “Overexpression of the Cytokine BAFF and Autoimmunity Risk”. New England Journal of Medicine.  2017 Apr, 376. (17): 1615-1626. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1610528;
    Editorials  related to the study of Steri M et al :

    • Korn T, Oukka M. A BAFFling Association between Malaria Resistance and the Risk of Multiple Sclerosis. N Engl J Med. 2017 Apr.
    • Stohl W., Systemic lupus erythematosus: BAFF emerges from the genetic shadows. Nat Review Rheumatol. 2017 Jun.
    • Comabella M. Neuroimmunology: B cells and variant BAFF in autoimmune disease. Nat Rev Neurology. 2017 Jun.
  9. Pala M, Zappala Z, Marongiu M, Li X, Davis JR, Cusano R, Crobu F, Kukurba KR, Gloudemans MJ, Reinier F, Berutti R, Piras MG, Mulas A, Zoledziewska M, Marongiu M, Sorokin EP, Hess GT, Smith KS […..],Fiorillo E, Bassik MC, Sawcer SJ, Battle A, Novembre J, Jones C, Angius A, Abecasis GR, Schlessinger D & Cucca F,* Montgomery SB.* “Population- and individual-specific regulatory variation in Sardinia”. Nature Genetics, 2017 Apr 10. doi: 10.1038/ng.3840; *Co-corresponding author
  10. Danjou F, Zoledziewska M, Sidore C, Steri M, Busonero F, Maschio A, Mulas A, Perseu L Barella S, Porcu E, Pistis G, Pitzalis M, Pala M, Menzel S, Metrustry S, Spector T, Leoni L, Angius A, Uda M, Moi P, Thein SL, Galanello R, Abecasis GR,  Schlessinger D, Sanna S, &  Cucca F. “Genome-Wide Association analyses based on whole genome sequencing in Sardinia provide insights into regulation of hemoglobin levels”. Nature Genetics, 2015, Nov;47(11):1264-71 doi: 10.1038/ng.3307.
  11. Sidore C, Busonero F, Maschio A, Porcu E, Naitza S, Zoledziewska M, Mulas A, Pistis G, Steri M, Danjou F, Kwong A, Ortega del Vecchyo VD, […..], Zeggini E, Soranzo N, Jones C, Lyons R, Angius A, Kang HM, Novembre J, Sanna S, Schlessinger D, Cucca F*, Abecasis GR*. “Genome sequencing elucidates Sardinian genetic architecture and augments association analyses for lipid and blood inflammatory markers.” Nature Genetics, 2015 Nov;47(11):1272-81. doi: 10.1038/ng.3368. *Co-corresponding author
  12. Zoledziewska M, Sidore C, Chiang CWK, Sanna S., Mulas A, Steri M, Busonero F, Marcus JH, Marongiu M, Maschio A, Ortega Del Vecchyo D, Floris M, Meloni A, Delitala A, Concas MP, Murgia F, Biino G, Vaccargiu S, Nagaraja R, Lohmueller KE, UK10K Consortium, Timpson Nicholas J, Soranzo N, Tachmazidou I, Dedoussis G, Zeggini E, The Understanding Society Scientific Group, Uzzau S, Jones C, Lyons R, Angius A, Abecasis GR, Novembre J, Schlessinger D & Cucca F. “Height-reducing variants and selection for short stature in Sardinia”. Nature Genetics, 2015, Nov;47(11):1352-6. doi: 10.1038/ng. 3403
  13. Orrù V, Steri M, Sole G, Sidore C, Virdis F, Dei M, Lai S, Zoledziewska M, Busonero F, Mulas A, Floris M, Mentzen WI, Urru SA, Olla S, Marongiu M, Piras MG, Lobina M, Maschio A, Pitzalis M, Urru MF, Marcelli M, Cusano R, Deidda F, Serra V, Oppo M, Pilu R, Reinier F, Berutti R, Pireddu L, Zara I, Porcu E, Kwong A, Brennan C, Tarrier B, Lyons R, Kang HM, Uzzau S, Atzeni R, Valentini M, Firinu D, Leoni L, Rotta G, Naitza S, Angius A, Congia M, Whalen MB, Jones CM, Schlessinger D, Abecasis GR, Fiorillo E, Sanna S & Cucca F, “Genetic variants regulating immune cell levels in health and disease”. Cell, 2013 Sep 26;155(1):242-56.
  14. Francalacci P, Morelli L, Angius A, Berutti R, Reinier F, Atzeni R, Pilu R, Busonero F, Maschio A, Zara I, Sanna D, Useli A, Urru MF, Marcelli M, Cusano R, Oppo M, Zoledziewska M, Pitzalis M, Deidda F, Porcu E, Poddie F, Kang HM, Lyons R, Tarrier B, Gresham JB, Li B, Tofanelli S, Alonso S, Dei M, Lai S, Mulas A, Whalen MB, Uzzau S, Jones C, Schlessinger D, Abecasis GR, Sanna S, Sidore C & Cucca F, “Low-pass DNA sequencing of 1200 Sardinians reconstructs European Y-chromosome phylogeny”. Science, 2013 Aug 2;341(6145):565-9.
    Related Editorial: Cann RL. Y weigh in again on modern humans. 2013 Aug
  15. Sanna S, Pitzalis M, Zoledziewska M, Zara I, Sidore C, Murru R, Whalen MB, Busonero F, Maschio A, Costa G, Melis MC, Deidda F, Poddie F, Morelli L, Farina G, Li Y, Dei M, Lai S, Mulas A, Cuccuru G, Porcu E, Liang L, Zavattari P, Moi L, Deriu E, Urru MF, Bajorek M, Satta MA, Cocco E, Ferrigno P, Sotgiu S, Pugliatti M, Traccis S, Angius A, Melis M, Rosati G, Abecasis GR, Uda M, Marrosu MG, Schlessinger D & Cucca F. “Variants within the immunoregulatory CBLB gene are associated with multiple sclerosis.” Nature Genetics, 2010 Jun;42(6):495-7. doi: 10.1038/ng.584
  • Cover Issue of Nature Genetics and Editorials related to Danjou F et al, Zoledziewska M et al & Sidore C, et al:
    A new genomic island. Nature Genetics. 2015 Nov;
    Small island, big genetic discoveries. Nature Genetics. 2015 Nov. Lettre G, Hirschhorn JN
  1. Zoledziewska, M; Costa, G; Pitzalis, M; Cocco, E; Melis, C; Moi, L; Zavattari, P; Murru, R;Lampis, R; Morelli, L; Poddie, F; Frongia, P; Pusceddu, P; Bajorek, M; Marras, A; Satta, A M; Chessa, A; Pugliatti, M; Sotgiu, S; Whalen, M B; Rosati, G; Cucca, F*; Marrosu, MG* Variation within the CLEC16A gene shows consistent disease association with both multiple sclerosis and type 1 diabetes in Sardinia, Genes and Immunity, 10 (1), pp. 15–7, 2009, ISSN: 1476-5470.
  2. Zoledziewska, M; Perra, C ; Orrù, V ; Moi, L; Frongia, P ; Congia, M ; Bottini, N ; Cucca, F Further evidence of a primary, causal association of the PTPN22 620W variant with type 1 diabetes. Diabetes, 57 (1), pp. 229–34, 2008, ISSN: 1939-327X.
  3. Bottini, N ; Vang, T; Cucca, F; Mustelin, T. Role of PTPN22 in type 1 diabetes and other autoimmune diseases Seminars in Immunology, 18 (4), pp. 207–213, 2006, ISSN: 10445323.
  4. Vang, T ; Congia, M ; Macis, Maria D; Musumeci, L ; Orrú, V ; Zavattari, P; Nika, K; Tautz, L ; Taskén, K; Cucca, F ; Mustelin, T; Bottini, N Autoimmune-associated lymphoid tyrosine phosphatase is a gain-of-function variant. Nature Genetics, 37 (12), pp. 1317–9, 2005, ISSN: 1061-4036.
  5. Marrosu, MG ; Motzo, C; Murru, R ; Lampis, R; Costa, G; Zavattari, P; Contu, D ; Fadda, E ; Cocco, E; Cucca, F.; The co-inheritance of type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis in Sardinia cannot be explained by genotype variation in the HLA region alone. Human Molecular Genetics, 13 (23), pp. 2919–24, 2004, ISSN: 0964-6906.
  6. Contu, D; Morelli, L; Zavattari, P; Lampis, R; Angius, E; Frongia, P; Murru, D; Maioli, M; Francalacci, P; Todd, JA; Cucca, F Sex-related bias and exclusion mapping of the nonrecombinant portion of chromosome Y in human type 1 diabetes in the isolated founder population of Sardinia. Diabetes, 51 (12), pp. 3573–3576, 2002, ISSN: 0012-1797 0012-1797.
  7. Marrosu, MG; Murru, R; Murru, M R; Costa, G; Zavattari, P; Whalen, M; Cocco, E; Mancosu, C; Schirru, L; Solla, E; Fadda, E; Melis, C; Porru, I; Rolesu, M; Cucca, F Dissection of the HLA association with multiple sclerosis in the founder isolated population of Sardinia. Human Molecular Genetics, 10 (25), pp. 2907–16, 2001, ISSN: 0964-6906.
  8. Cucca, F; Dudbridge, F; Loddo, M; Mulargia, A P; Lampis, R; Angius, E; {De Virgiliis}, S; Koeleman, B P; Bain, S C; Barnett, A H; Gilchrist, F; Cordell, H; Welsh, K; Todd, J A The HLA-DPB1–associated component of the IDDM1 and its relationship to the major loci HLA-DQB1, -DQA1, and -DRB1. Diabetes, 50 (5), pp. 1200–5, 2001, ISSN: 0012-1797.
  9. Zavattari, P; Lampis, R; Motzo, C; Loddo, M; Mulargia, A; Whalen, M; Maioli, M; Angius, E; Todd, J A; Cucca, F Conditional linkage disequilibrium analysis of a complex disease superlocus, IDDM1 in the HLA region, reveals the presence of independent modifying gene effects influencing the type 1 diabetes risk encoded by the major HLA-DQB1, -DRB1 disease loci. Human Molecular Genetics,10 (8), pp. 881–9, 2001, ISSN: 0964-6906.
  10. Cucca, F; Lampis, R; Congia, M; Angius, E; Nutland, S; Bain, S C; Barnett, A H; Todd, J A A correlation between the relative predisposition of MHC class II alleles to type 1 diabetes and the structure of their proteins. Human Molecular Genetics, 10 (19), pp. 2025–2037, 2001, ISSN: 0964-6906 0964-6906.
  11. Zavattari, P; Lampis, R; Mulargia, A; Loddo, M; Angius, E; Todd, J A; Cucca, F Confirmation of the DRB1-DQB1 loci as the major component of IDDM1 in the isolated founder population of Sardinia. Human Molecular Genetics, 9 (20), pp. 2967–72, 2000, ISSN: 0964-6906.
  12. Zavattari, P; Deidda, E; Whalen, M; Lampis, R; Mulargia, A; Loddo, M; Eaves, I; Mastio, G; Todd, J A; Cucca, F Major factors influencing linkage disequilibrium by analysis of different chromosome regions in distinct populations: demography, chromosome recombination frequency and selection. Human Molecular Genetics, 9 (20), pp. 2947–57, 2000, ISSN: 0964-6906.
  13. Lampis, R; Morelli, L; Congia, M; Macis, M D; Mulargia, A; Loddo, M; {De Virgiliis}, S; Marrosu, M G; Todd, J A; Cucca, F The inter-regional distribution of HLA class II haplotypes indicates the suitability of the Sardinian population for case-control association studies in complex diseases. Human Molecular Genetics, 9 (20), pp. 2959–65, 2000, ISSN: 0964-6906.
  14. Eaves, I A; Merriman, T R; Barber, R A; Nutland, S; Tuomilehto-Wolf, E; Tuomilehto, J; Cucca, F; Todd, J A The genetically isolated populations of Finland and sardinia may not be a panacea for linkage disequilibrium mapping of common disease genes. Nature Genetics, 25 (3), pp. 320–323, 2000, ISSN: 1061-4036 1061-4036.
  15. Cucca, F; Esposito, L; Goy, J V; Merriman, M E; Wilson, A J; Reed, P W; Bain, S C; Todd, J A Investigation of linkage of chromosome 8 to type 1 diabetes: multipoint analysis and exclusion mapping of human chromosome 8 in 593 affected sib-pair families from the U.K. and U.S. Journal Article Diabetes, 47 (9), pp. 1525–7, 1998, ISSN: 0012-1797
  16. Cucca F, Zhu ZB, Khanna A, Cossu F, Congia M, Badiali M, Lampis R, Frau F, De Virgiliis S, Cao A, Arnone M, Piras P, Campbell RD, Cooper MD, Volanakis JE, Powis SH. Evaluation of IgA deficiency in Sardinians indicates a susceptibility gene is encoded within the HLA class III region. Clin Exp Immunol. 1998 Jan;111(1):76-80.
  17. Marrosu, M G; Murru, M R; Costa, G; Murru, R; Muntoni, F; Cucca, F DRB1-DQA1-DQB1 loci and multiple sclerosis predisposition in the Sardinian population. Human Molecular Genetics, 7 (8), pp. 1235–7, 1998, ISSN: 0964-6906.
  18. Cucca, F; Goy, J V; Kawaguchi, Y; Esposito, L; Merriman, M E; Wilson, A J; Cordell, H J; Bain, S C; Todd, J A A male-female bias in type 1 diabetes and linkage to chromosome Xp in MHC HLA-DR3-positive patients. Nature Genetics, 19 (3), pp. 301–2, 1998, ISSN: 1061-4036.
  19. Copeman, J B; Cucca, F; Hearne, C M; Cornall, R J; Reed, P W; Rønningen, K S; Undlien, D E; Nisticò, L; Buzzetti, R; Tosi, R; Pociot, F; Nerup, J; Cornélis, F; Barnett, A H; Bain, S C; Todd, J A Linkage disequilibrium mapping of a type 1 diabetes susceptibility gene (IDDM7) to chromosome 2q31–q33 Nature Genetics, 9 (1), pp. 80–85, 1995, ISSN: 1061-4036.
  20. Cucca, F; Lampis, R; Frau, F; Macis, D; Angius, E; Masile, P; Chessa, M; Frongia, P; Silvetti, M; Cao, A; De Virgiliis, S; Congia, M The distribution of DR4 haplotypes in Sardinia suggests a primary association of type I diabetes with DRB1 and DQB1 loci. Human Immunology, 43 (4), pp. 301–8, 1995, ISSN: 0198-8859.

On-going Grants of which I am the principal investigator/coordinator:

2019 – 2022 The Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Research (MIUR), Research projects of national interest (PRIN), “Dissecting the impact of gut mucosal immunity in autoimmune diseases”, € 764.210,00;
20162021 National Institute of Health (USA), “Longitudinal studies for Age Associated Conditions in a Sardinia Population Cohort (SardiNIA 4)”, $4.345.690,00;
20192022 Fondazione Italiana Sclerosi Multipla (FISM), “Genetic-driven druggable target identification and selection of modulating compounds in Multiple Sclerosis”, € 1.050.000,00;
20192021 The Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Research (MIUR), “PATH Pathology in Automated Traceable Healthcare”. € 806.000,00;
20192021 Regione Autonoma della Sardegna (Legge regionale 7 Sardegna), “Elucidazione del ruolo dell’immunità mucosale nella sclerosi multipla”.
€ 378.000,00;
2015 2019 Project Coordinator and PI, EU HORIZON 2020, “An integrated approach to dissect determinants, risk factors and pathways of ageing of the immune system” €. 5,850,000.00; (Residual funds still active)
2019 2022 PI, Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, “A genetic toolbox in MS drug discovery: patent development pf candidate genes”, € 1.050.000, 00

Invited presentations to peer-reviewed, internationally established conferences and/or international advanced schools:

I have presented my work as an invited speaker in numerous national conferences and in more than 40 international conferences or advanced schools. The most significant from last years are listed below.

  • Reggio Calabria, Italy – 3st USERN Congress & the Festival for awarding the USERN Prize
    Lecture: The relevance of Genetic Studies in a Sardinian Isolated Population.
    Invited by USERN – Universal Scientific Education and Research Network – November 2018
  • Biddeford, ME, United States – Gordon Research Conference – University of New England
    Lecture: Genetic Analysis of Multifactorial Traits in the Sardinian Founder Population.
    Invited by Gordon Research Conference – University of New England – June 2018
  • Venice, Italy – 32nd European Immunogenetics and histocompatibility Conference
    Lecture: Immunogenetics in autoimmunity.
    Invited by European Federation for Immunogenetics – May 2018
  • Bethesda, USA – NIAID/NIH – Malaria Cell Biology Section
    Seminar: Overexpression of the Cytokine BAFF and Autoimmunity Risk.
    Invited by NIAID/NIH – Malaria Cell Biology Section – April 2017
  • Doha, Qatar – Sidra Symposium: “Functional Genomics and Beyond” organized in collaboration with Nature Genetics
    Lecture: The Sardinian Genome Project & Nature versus Nurture in autoimmune diseases: the Sardinian exception.
    Invited by SIDRA – December 2016
  • Teheran, Iran – 1st USERN Congress & the Festival for awarding the USERN Prize
    Lecture: What the genes tell us about our origins, evolutionary history and our current health & Genetic regulation of the immune system in health and disease.
    Invited by USERN – Universal Scientific Education and Research Network – November 2016
  • Siena, Italy – Conference: “Aging and Immunity III”
    Lecture: Genetic variants regulating immune cell levels in health and disease.
    Invited by Fondation Mérieux’s – January 2016
  • Baltimore, USA – SardiNIA Symposium
    Lecture: Genetic Variants Regulating Immune Cell and Soluble Molecule Levels in Health, Aging, and Disease.
    Invited by National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH – October 2015
  • Yokoama, Giappone – 9th RCAI International Summer School Program 2014
    Lecture: Finding genetic variants regulating immune cell and molecule levels in health and autoimmune disease.
    Invited by Research Center for Allergy and Immunology (RIKEN) – June 2014
  • Milano, Italy – The European Human Genetics (ESGH) Conference 2014
    Lecture: High resolution genetic analysis to detect variants associated with quantitative traits and diseases in the founder Sardinian population.
    Invited by ESHG – June 2014
  • Muscat, Sultanate of Oman – 2nd Genetics Conference: “Genetics in developing countries, unique challenges and opportunities”
    Lecture: Genetic Isolates: Lessons Learned from the SardiNIA project”/Genetic Variations Enabling Reconstruction of Past Events in Human Evolution.
    Invited by College of Medicine & Health Sciences – Genetics Department, Sultan Qaboos University – March 2014
  • Cancun, Mexico – 3rd Meeting of the Latin American Society of Human Genetics & 38th Meeting Mexican Society of Human Genetics (AMGH)
    Lecture: Genetic Factors in Immunity and Autoimmunity.
    Invited by AMGH – November 2013
  • Yokoama, Giappone – 8th RCAI International Summer School Program 2014
    Lecture: Finding genetic factors affecting both levels of immune cells and molecules and autoimmune disease risk.
    Invited by Research Center for Allergy and Immunology (RIKEN) – June 2013
  • Baltimora, USA – National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH
    Seminar: Analysis of genetic factors in autoimmune disease, especially multiple sclerosis, in the Sardinian population.
    Invited by National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH – April 2013
  • Boston, USA – 11th International Society of Neuro-Immunology (ISNI)
    Lecture: Searching for causal factors in genetic associations with Multiple Sclerosis.
    Invited by ISNI – November 2012
  • Tokio, Japan – Keio University
    Seminar: Genetic variants associated with immune traits and diseases in the Sardinian founder population.
    Invited by Keio University – October 2012
  • Stockholm, Sweden – Karolinska Hospital
    Seminar: The nexus of genetic factors in immunity-autoimmunity: new entry points for intervention in MS and other autoimmune diseases.
    Invited by Karolinska Hospital – May 2012
  • Seoul, South Korea – Symposium “the Comunity of Longevity”
    Lecture: The ProgeNIA/SardiNIA project: dissection of age – associated conditions in a Sardinian population cohort”.
    Invited by National University of Seoul – October 2010

I have presented my work as an invited speaker in numerous national conferences and in more than 40 international conferences or advanced schools. The most significant from last years are listed below.

  • Reggio Calabria, Italy – 3st USERN Congress & the Festival for awarding the USERN Prize
    Lecture: The relevance of Genetic Studies in a Sardinian Isolated Population.
    Invited by USERN – Universal Scientific Education and Research Network – November 2018
  • Biddeford, ME, United States – Gordon Research Conference – University of New England
    Lecture: Genetic Analysis of Multifactorial Traits in the Sardinian Founder Population.
    Invited by Gordon Research Conference – University of New England – June 2018
  • Venice, Italy – 32nd European Immunogenetics and histocompatibility Conference
    Lecture: Immunogenetics in autoimmunity.
    Invited by European Federation for Immunogenetics – May 2018
  • Bethesda, USA – NIAID/NIH – Malaria Cell Biology Section
    Seminar: Overexpression of the Cytokine BAFF and Autoimmunity Risk.
    Invited by NIAID/NIH – Malaria Cell Biology Section – April 2017
  • Doha, Qatar – Sidra Symposium: “Functional Genomics and Beyond” organized in collaboration with Nature Genetics
    Lecture: The Sardinian Genome Project & Nature versus Nurture in autoimmune diseases: the Sardinian exception.
    Invited by SIDRA – December 2016
  • Teheran, Iran – 1st USERN Congress & the Festival for awarding the USERN Prize
    Lecture: What the genes tell us about our origins, evolutionary history and our current health & Genetic regulation of the immune system in health and disease.
    Invited by USERN – Universal Scientific Education and Research Network – November 2016
  • Siena, Italy – Conference: “Aging and Immunity III”
    Lecture: Genetic variants regulating immune cell levels in health and disease.
    Invited by Fondation Mérieux’s – January 2016
  • Baltimore, USA – SardiNIA Symposium
    Lecture: Genetic Variants Regulating Immune Cell and Soluble Molecule Levels in Health, Aging, and Disease.
    Invited by National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH – October 2015
  • Yokoama, Giappone – 9th RCAI International Summer School Program 2014
    Lecture: Finding genetic variants regulating immune cell and molecule levels in health and autoimmune disease.
    Invited by Research Center for Allergy and Immunology (RIKEN) – June 2014
  • Milano, Italy – The European Human Genetics (ESGH) Conference 2014
    Lecture: High resolution genetic analysis to detect variants associated with quantitative traits and diseases in the founder Sardinian population.
    Invited by ESHG – June 2014
  • Bertinoro, Italy – 27th Course in Medical Genetics of the European School of Genetic Medicine (ESGM)
    Lecture: Population genetics in the genome era: the Sardinia project.
    Invited by ESGM – May 2014
  • Muscat, Sultanate of Oman – 2nd Genetics Conference: “Genetics in developing countries, unique challenges and opportunities”
    Lecture: Genetic Isolates: Lessons Learned from the SardiNIA project”/Genetic Variations Enabling Reconstruction of Past Events in Human Evolution.
    Invited by College of Medicine & Health Sciences – Genetics Department, Sultan Qaboos University – March 2014
  • Cancun, Mexico – 3rd Meeting of the Latin American Society of Human Genetics & 38th Meeting Mexican Society of Human Genetics (AMGH)
    Lecture: Genetic Factors in Immunity and Autoimmunity.
    Invited by AMGH – November 2013
  • Yokoama, Giappone – 8th RCAI International Summer School Program 2014
    Lecture: Finding genetic factors affecting both levels of immune cells and molecules and autoimmune disease risk.
    Invited by Research Center for Allergy and Immunology (RIKEN) – June 2013
  • Baltimora, USA – National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH
    Seminar: Analysis of genetic factors in autoimmune disease, especially multiple sclerosis, in the Sardinian population.
    Invited by National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH – April 2013
  • Boston, USA – 11th International Society of Neuro-Immunology (ISNI)
    Lecture: Searching for causal factors in genetic associations with Multiple Sclerosis.
    Invited by ISNI – November 2012
  • Yokoama, Japan – Research Center for Allergy and Immunology (RIKEN)
    Lecture: Genetic variants associated with immune traits and diseases in the Sardinian founder population.
    Invited by Research Center for Allergy and Immunology (RIKEN) – October 2012
  • Tokio, Japan – Keio University
    Seminar: Genetic variants associated with immune traits and diseases in the Sardinian founder population.
    Invited by Keio University – October 2012
  • Stockholm, Sweden – Karolinska Hospital
    Seminar: The nexus of genetic factors in immunity-autoimmunity: new entry points for intervention in MS and other autoimmune diseases.
    Invited by Karolinska Hospital – May 2012
  • Ronzano, Italy – Course on Molecular and Statistical Genetics of Consanguinity
    Lecture: The Sardinia project
    Invited by European Genetics Foundation – May 2012
  • London, UK – Research strategy and prioritization discussion involving the Steering Committee and Working Group representatives
    Lecture: The nexus of genetic factors in immunity-autoimmunity: new entry points for intervention in MS and other autoimmune diseases.
    Invited by International Progressive MS Collaborative – April 2012
  • Trieste, Italy – 5th International meeting on complex traits and genetic isolates
    Lecture: An integrated approach to study quantitative traits and diseases in Sardinia.
    Invited by CBM Cluster in Biomedicina – March 2012
  • Baltimora, USA – National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH
    Seminar: The nexus of genetic factors in immunity-autoimmunity: new findings from the SardiNIA study.
    Invited by National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH – March 2012
  • South Korea – Gachon University
    Seminar: The ProgeNIA/SardiNIA project: dissection of age-associated conditions in a Sardinian population cohort.
    Invited by Gachon University – October 2011
  • Seoul, South Korea – Symposium “the Comunity of Longevity”
    Lecture: The ProgeNIA/SardiNIA project: dissection of age – associated conditions in a Sardinian population cohort”.
    Invited by National University of Seoul – October 2010
  • Kurae Kun, South Korea – Symposium “the Comunity of Longevity”
    Seminar: Aging related quantitative traits: the SardiNIA/ProgeNIA project”, Simposio “the Comunity of Longevity.
    Invited by National University of Seoul – October 2010
  • Baltimora, USA – National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH
    Seminar: Longiutudinal Studies for Age –Associated Conditions in a Sardinia Population Cohort” and “Genetic basis of autoimmunity: the high prevalence in Sardinia as a model.
    Invited by National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH – July 2010
  • Milano, Italy – Serono Symposia International Course: “Autoimmunity and Immune Mediated Disorders”
    Lecture: Genetics of type 1 diabetes.
    Invited by Serono Symposia International Foundation – April 2010
  • Baltimora, USA – National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH
    Seminar: Genetic basis of autoimmunity: the high prevalence in Sardinia as a mode.
    Invited by National Institute on Aging (NIA) /NIH – April 2009
  • Oxford, UK – Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine
    Seminar: Common autoimmune diseases: genes and mechanisms.
    Invited by Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine – July 2007
  • Bertinoro, Italy – 20th Course in Medical Genetics of the European School of Genetic Medicine (ESGM)
    Lecture: Genetic analysis of multifactorial traits in isolated populations: facts and myths.
    Invited by ESGM – May 2007
  • Caxias do Sul, RS, Brasile – Latin American School of Human and Medical Genetics
    Lecture: Genetics of Common Disorders and Complex traits.
    Invited by LASG – May 2006
  • Athens, Greece – State of the art lecture
    Lecture: The genetics of type 1 diabetes 2005 – what is the real significance of the non MHC genes?.
    Invited by European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) – September 2005
  • Lyon, France – 7th Joint Meeting Paediatric Endocrinology
    Lecture: Genetic and Autoimmune Mechanisms of Type 1 Diabetes.
    Invited by ESPE/LWPES – September 2005
  • Curitiba, Brasile – 17th Annual Meeting of the Brazilian Society of Clinical Genetics
    Lecture: Common genetic autoimmune disorders; boom or boost?.
    Invited by Brazilian Congress of Clinical Genetic – June 2005
  • Cannes, Francia – Serono Symposia International Conference
    Lecture: The Sardinian Exception.
    Invited by Serono Symposia International Foundation – March 2005
  • San Diego, USA – IBC Clinical Genomics Conference
    Lecture: The Mapping of Complex Traits in Founder Populations.
    Invited by IBC USA Clinical Conference Inc – February 2005
  • Venezia, Italy – 7th International Congress of Neuroimmunology: Genetic regulation of autoimmunity
    Lecture: Prospects and limitations in the genetic analysis of common autoimmune diseases.
    Invited by International Society of Neuroimmunology – ISNI – September 2004
  • Cambridge, UK – 7th International Congress of Immunology Diabetes Society (IDS)
    Lecture: Type 1 diabetes in Sardinia.
    Invited by IDS – March 2004
  • Bertinoro, Italy – 16th Course in Medical Genetics of the European School of Genetic Medicine (ESGM)
    Lecture: Dissection of the genetic bases of common multifatorial traits in the founder isolated population from Sardinia .
    Invited by ESGM – March 2003
  • Strasbourg, France – The European Society of Human Genetics (ESHG) Conference 2002
    Lecture: The heritability of Type 1 Diabetes: genetic bases and molecular mechanisms.
    Invited by ESHG – May 2002
  • Sestri Levante, Italy – 14th Course in Medical Genetics of the European School of Genetic Medicine (ESGM)
    Lecture: Genetic dissection of complex traits: the example of Type 1 Diabetes.
    Invited by ESGM – March 2001
  • Turku, Finland – Scandinavian Society for the Study of Diabetes (SSSD)
    Lecture: Heterogeneity in the genetics of Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus.
    Invited by SSSD – May 1999
  • San Francisco, USA 9th International Congress of Immunology
    Lecture: The HLA associtation with insulin dependent diabetes mellitus.
    invited by American Association of Immunologists – July 1995
  • Turin, Italy – Conference: “The Future of Genetics in Medicine and beyond”
    Lecture: Genomic analyses for susceptibility to complex diseases.
    Invited by Department of Medical Sciences, Transplants Genetics, University of Turin – June 2017
  • Rome, Italy – AISM Annual Scientific Congress: “Together change life with multiple sclerosis”
    Lecture: From genes to pathogenic mechanisms: new therapeutic targets in multiple sclerosis.
    Invited by Italian MS Society and its Foundation – May 2017
  • Verona, Italy – Conference: “Dall’esoma per tutti al genoma di tutti”
    Lecture: Il caso Sardegna.
    Invited by Università di Verona – April 2017
  • Genova, Italy – XVI Corso di Aggiornamento in Genetica Clinica
    Lecture: Identificazione geni malattie complesse, Esempi della popolazione sarda.
    Invited by CISEF | Centro Internazionale Di Studi e Formazione Germana Gaslin – March 2017
  • Torino, Italy – XIX National Conference SIGU
    Lecture: Il Genoma Sardo.
    Invited by Italian Society of Human Genetics – November 2016
  • Rome, Italy – Annual Scientific Congress: “With our research ms doesn’t stop us”
    Lecture: Rational design of new candidate compounds for MS treatment based on analysis of biological targets identified through genome wide association studies in Sardinia.
    Invited by Italian MS Society and its Foundation – May 2016
  • Bolzano, Italy – Conference: “Genetic data in public research databases: Which governance mechanisms should apply?”
    Lecture: Sardinia Biobank.
    Invited by Accademia Europea di Bolzano (EURAC) – April 2016
  • Milano, Italy – 18° Giornata di Studio sulle Cellule Staminali: “La cellula e l’individuo nell’era della genomica umana”
    Lecture: Il sequenziamento dell’intero genoma nello studio dei tratti multifattoriali: dove, come e quanto..
    Invited by UniStem – University of Milan – January 2016
  • Rimini, Italy – XVIII National Conference SIGU
    Lecture: XIX National Conference SIGU.
    Invited by Italian Society of Human Genetics – October 2015
  • Bologna, Italy – XVII National Conference SIGU
    Lecture: Malattie multifattoriali e Next Generation Sequencing.
    Invited by Italian Society of Human Genetics – October 2014
  • Trieste, Italy – XXI Annual Conference
    Lecture: Le varianti genetiche che regolano il livello delle cellule immuni in salute e malattia.
    Invited by Italian Society for Immunogenetics and Transplantation Biology – October 2014
  • Roma, Italy – Meeting on science: “innovation and health” in the presence of the President of the Republic, Giorgio Napolitano
    Lecture: La Genetica molecolare dell’autoimmunità e le sue ricadute cliniche.
    Invited by Senate of the Republic (Italy) – December 2013
  • Roma, Italy – XVI National Conference SIGU
    Lecture: Analisi combinata di tratti quantitativi e qualitativi come strumento per la dissezione dei meccanismi eziopatogentici di malattie multifattoriali.
    Invited by Italian Society of Human Genetics – September 2013
  • Bologna; Italy – 69° Congresso della Società Italiana di Pediatria
    Lecture: Medicina predittiva e personalizzata.
    Invited by Società Italiana di Pediatria – May 2013
  • Napoli, Italy – Institute of Genetics and Biophysics
    Seminar: Analyses of qualitative traits in the founder Sardinian population: from genes to mechanisms.
    Invited by Institute of Genetics and Biophysics – May 2012
  • Bologna, Italy – Course on Molecular and Statistical Genetics of Consanguinity
    Lecture: An analysis of genetic factors influencing immunity and autoimmunity in the founder Sardinian population.
    Invited by European Genetics Foundation, Università degli Studi di Bologna, Fondazione Internazionale Menarini – May 2012
  • Milano, Italy – Conference: “Integrità della persona e libertà di ricerca tra Carta di Nizza e Costituzione”
    Lecture: Eugenetica: cos’è, cosa non è.
    Invited by Consiglio Superiore della Magistratura – November 2010
  • Bertinoro, Italy – 20th Course in Medical Genetics
    Lecture: Genetic analysis of complex traits in isolated populations: facts and myths.
    Invited by University Residential Centre of Bertinoro – May 2007
  • Venezia, Italy – IX National Conference SIGU
    Lecture: Immunogenetics and autoimmune disorders.
    Invited by Italian Society of Human Genetics – November 2006
  • Milano, Italy – Conference: Gene-environment interactions in T1D
    Lecture: Genetics of type 1 diabetes.
    Invited by Istituto Scientifico San Raffaele – October 2006
  • Genova, Italy – Genetics of Autoimmune Diseases
    Lecture: The genetic bases of immune system diseases.
    Invited by G. Gaslini Institute, University of Genoa – January 2006
  • Pavia, Italy – First Seminar for European judges and prosecutors on ” Hot Genetic Issues and the Courts”.
    Lecture: Cases: Supreme Court of Iceland and Administrative Court of Veneto.
    Invited by Consiglio Superiore della Magistratura (CSM) – September 2005
  •  Bologna, Italy – Scientific-Judicial course
    Lecture: The Icelandic Case.
    Invited by Consiglio Superiore della Magistratura (CSM) – December 2004
  • Pisa,  Italy – VII National Conference SIGU
    Lecture: Genetic analysis of complex traits: hopes and failures.
    Invited by Italian Society of Human Genetics – October 2004
  • Roma, Italy – National Congress of the Italian Society of Diabetology
    Lecture: Diabetes and celiac disease, disorders of genes or environment?.
    Invited by Italian Society of Diabetology – May 2004