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Institute of Advanced Study

Dr Giuseppina Simone

COFUND Senior Research Fellow at Van Mildert College (October - December 2015)

Dr Simone is a team leader at the Italian Institute of Technology, University of Napoli `Federico II`, Italy. Over the last few decades, a rapid climb in the quality of life has occurred, as a consequence of new therapies, medical infrastructure and food quality. Nevertheless, humanity still has a concern for any outbreak of infectious diseases, which calls for an intensification of multidisciplinary research as a bridge between technology and life science.

After understanding the genome and the proteome, scientists focused their attention on to cells as a whole. Indeed, it was possible to analyse the single cell, highlighting the rare opportunity to characterise the heterogeneity of the cellular population. From there on, attention to single cells arose, demanding the interest of researchers. In parallel, technologies meeting the requirements of cellular analysis were miniaturised. Microfluidics and, in particular, microdroplets emerged as promising tools for discoveries in molecular biology and evolution.

In this scenario the Fellowship research aims to get new insights in the field of single cell analysis in particular to grasp the genotype to phenotype relationship. A microdroplet platform will be developed, which will compartmentalise the single cell and will enable the analysis. With a view to the future, one potential impact of the research Fellowship would be development of the microfluidic device by biomedical companies, who could make it a disposable item in routine analyses.