Stefano Gustincich

Stefano GustincichStefano Gustincich is the Head of the Laboratory of Neurogenomics, founded thanks to the career development award from the Giovanni Armenise-Harvard Foundation.

Since 2015, Gustincich is Full Professor in Applied Biology at the Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA), where he lectures the courses of Advanced Molecular Biology of the Cell and Functional Genomics. From 2004 to 2015 he was Associate Professor in Physiology at SISSA.

After his training in Biology at the University of Trieste, he obtained his PhD degree in Molecular Genetics and Biotechnology at SISSA, working at the Laboratorio Nazionale CIB – Area Science Park in Trieste (Italy), under the supervision of Prof. Claudio Schneider. In 1993, he was awarded a long-term EMBO fellowship and joined as post-doctoral fellow the laboratory of Prof. Elio Raviola at the Department of Neurobiology of Harvard Medical School, in Boston (USA). In 1998 he was appointed Instructor in Neurobiology by the same institution. In 2003, thanks to the support of the Giovanni Armenise-Harvard Foundation, he joint the Sector of Neurobiology at SISSA, in Trieste, where he founded the Laboratory of Neurogenomics. From 2004 to 2015 he was Associate Professor in Physiology at SISSA. Since 2015 he is Full Professor in Applied Biology at the Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA).
Since 1999 he has been collaborating with the FANTOM consortium, a joint international effort led by the Japanese research institution RIKEN, to study the mammalian transcriptome.
From 2009 to 2012 he coordinated a large international multi-center consortium (DOPAMINET) focused on the study of the molecular networks acting in dopaminergic neurons of Chordates and sustained by EU fundings (FP7-HEALTH-2007-B).
In 2014 he was an advisor to the Italian Institute of Technology for Neurogenomics. Since October-November 2015 he is Deputy Director for Life Science and Director of the Department of Neuroscience and Brain Technologies at the Italian Institute of Technology, Genova, Italy.

Since the beginning of his career Stefano Gustincich has pioneered the field of functional genomics approaches to neurobiology, integrating the study of the anatomical and physiological organization of neural networks with gene expression data in health and neurodegenerative diseases. In particular, he developed a transgenic mouse model to study the dopaminergic neurons of the retina to carry out microarray analysis of gene expression at single cell level, and developed technologies, like nanoCAGE to unveil gene expression in selected brain regions or neuronal cell types purified with Laser Capture Microdissection technology. Among his most significant scientific discoveries there are the unexpected finding of hemoglobin expression in the brain and the discovery of a new class of long non-coding RNAs that activate translation of their sense protein-coding partners.
His current major interest is the study of long non-coding RNAs and repetitive elements in the brain and their role in neurodegenerative diseases.

He is founder of two biotech companies, PARKscreen Srl and TransSINE Technologies, while in 2011 he was awarded the Italian national prize for Innovation in Biotechnology.

He is author of over 84 scientific publications (total IF >700, average IF of 9.66, h index of 31, over 8483 total citations, Google Scholar February 2016) and a patent.

The ten most representative publications of his career follow: