The Scientific Director

PROF. GERRY MELINO Ph.D

Gerry Melino is the Scientific Director of the European Brain Research Institute (EBRI) in Rome.  He studied Medicine in Rome and obtained the Ph.D. in London. He works at the Medical Research Council Toxicology Unit, UK, and is Professor of Molecular Biology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Rome-Tor Vergata. He is Editor-in-Chief of the journal Cell Death and Differentiation (www.nature.com/cdd) and acts as Scientific Advisor for several Governmental Institutions. Gerry Melino obtained in 2009 from the President of the Italian Republic, On. G. Napolitano, the Feltrinelli Prize (the highest scientific recognition in Italy) of the Accademia dei Lincei.

His scientific interest, with over 300 papers (> 9,000 citations), focuses upon programmed cell death in neural and cancer models. In particular, the molecular events leading to death of individual cells are investigated in vitro and in vivo, both in animal models as well as in human pathologies. More importantly, Gerry investigates the two recently identified members of the p53 family - p63 and p73. The molecular events driven by DNA damage to elicit the function of p63/p73 is investigated in vitro (transcriptional targets, proteasomal degradation) as well in ad hoc transgenic animal models.  A search for a low molecular weight inhibitor of the ubiquitin E3 ligase ITCH, controlling the degradation of p63/p73, is under way.  Recently, he focuses on p63/p73-related micro-RNA in neurodevelopment.