a first-class learning and working
environment on the cutting edge
of neurobiology research
watch the video

Whatever question you want to ask the brain, here you will find the language and the tools to conduct your experiment, the right people to advise your research, and the ideal working environment to start a brilliant and satisfying career in neuroscience. All research and teaching is conducted in ENGLISH. There are no TUITION FEES, and all PhD students receive a FELLOWSHIP FOR 3-4 YEARS



Anna Menini

Anna Menini

Olfactory systemCourse Coordinator- Full Professor

Laura Ballerini

Laura Ballerini

Neurons and nanomaterialsFull Professor

Vincent Torre

Vincent Torre

BionanotechnologiesFull Professor

Giuliano Taccola

Giuliano Taccola

Spinal cord neurophysiologyResearcher

Paul Heppenstall

Paul Heppenstall

Physiology of somatosensationFull Professor

Associated members

Loredana Casalis

Loredana Casalis

AFM litographyScientist at Elettra Sincrotrone

Dan Cojoc

Dan Cojoc

Optical manipulation and imagingSenior Scientist at IOM-CNR

Michele Giugliano

Michele Giugliano

From neurons to networksProfessor at Antwerp University

Latest Publications

Nat Nanotechnol. 2018 Jun 11. doi: 10.1038/s41565-018-0163-6

Single-layer graphene modulates neuronal communication and augments membrane ion currents

Pampaloni NP, Lottner M, Giugliano M, Matruglio A, D'Amico F, Prato M, Garrido JA, Ballerini L, Scaini D

Adv. Funct. Mater. 2017, 1700550 First published: 5 May 2017 DOI: 10.1002/adfm.201700550

Nanostructures to Engineer 3D Neural-Interfaces: Directing Axonal Navigation toward Successful Bridging of Spinal Segments

Aurand ER, Usmani S, Medelin M, Scaini D, Bosi S, Rosselli FB, Donato S, Tromba G, Prato M and Ballerini L

J. Biomed. Nanotechnol. 2017, Vol. 13, No. 5 1550-7033/2017/13/559/007 doi:10.1166/jbn.2017.2364

Successful Regrowth of Retinal Neurons When Cultured Interfaced to Carbon Nanotube Platforms

Cellot G, La Monica S, Scaini D, Rauti R, Bosi S, Prato M, Gandolfi S and Ballerini L


Science, 9 JUNE 2017 • VOL 356 ISSUE 6342 pp 1010-1011 (Perspectives on Biomaterials) 10.1126/science.aan1227

Nanomaterials for stimulating nerve growth

Marchesan S, Ballerini L, Prato M

Channels (Austin). 2017 Sep 3;11(5):399-414. doi: 10.1080/19336950.2017.1307489. Epub 2017 Mar 16.

The long tale of the calcium activated Cl- channels in olfactory transduction

Dibattista M, Pifferi S, Boccaccio A, Menini A, Reisert J.

Front Cell Neurosci. 2017 Dec 18;11:402. doi: 10.3389/fncel.2017.00402. eCollection 2017

Actin Waves Do Not Boost Neurite Outgrowth in the Early Stages of Neuron Maturation

Mortal S, Iseppon F, Perissinotto A, D'Este E, Cojoc D, Napolitano LMR, Torre V

Nat Biotechnol. 2017 Nov 9;35(11):1021-1023. doi: 10.1038/nbt.3958

Public views on gene editing and its uses

Gaskell G, Bard I, Allansdottir A, da Cunha RV, Eduard P, Hampel J, Hildt E, Hofmaier C, Kronberger N, Laursen S, Meijknecht A, Nordal S, Quintanilha A, Revuelta G, Saladié N, Sándor J, Santos JB, Seyringer S, Singh I, Somsen H, Toonders W, Torgersen H, Torre V, Varju M, Zwart H

J Gen Physiol. 2016 Oct;148(4):293-311. doi: 10.1085/jgp.201611622.

he Ca2+-activated Cl- channel TMEM16B regulates action potential firing and axonal targeting in olfactory sensory neurons

Pietra G, Dibattista M, Menini A, Reisert J, Boccaccio A.

Science Advances 15 Jul 2016: Vol. 2, no. 7, e1600087 DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1600087

3D meshes of carbon nanotubes guide functional reconnection of segregated spinal explants

Usmani S, Aurand ER, Medelin M, Fabbro A, Scaini D, Laishram J, Rosselli FB, Ansuini A, Zoccolan D, Scarselli M, De Crescenzi M, Bosi S, Prato M and Ballerini L

Scientific Reports 6, Article number: 29640 (2016) doi:10.1038/srep29640

The role of dimensionality in neuronal network dynamics

Ulloa Severino FP, Ban J, Song Q, Tang M, Bianconi G, Cheng G, Torre V.

J Neurosci. 2015 Jan 7;35(1):146-60. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0613-14.2015

Circuit formation and function in the olfactory bulb of mice with reduced spontaneous afferent activity

Lorenzon P, Redolfi N, Podolsky MJ, Zamparo I, Franchi SA, Pietra G, Boccaccio A, Menini A, Murthy VN, Lodovichi C.

Biochim Biophys Acta 1848(4):1005-13.

Multiple effects of anthracene-9-carboxylic acid on the TMEM16B/anoctamin2 calcium-activated chloride channel

Cherian OL, Menini A, Boccaccio A.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 May 4. pii: 201423162. [Epub ahead of print]

The phototransduction machinery in the rod outer segment has a strong efficacy gradient

Mazzolini M, Facchetti G, Andolfi L, Proietti Zaccaria R, Tuccio S, Treu J, Altafini C, Di Fabrizio EM, Lazzarino M, Rapp G, Torre V.

Nat Commun. 2015 May 12;6:7093. doi: 10.1038/ncomms8093

Conformational rearrangements in the transmembrane domain of CNGA1 channels revealed by single-molecule force spectroscopy

Maity S, Mazzolini M, Arcangeletti M, Valbuena A, Fabris P, Lazzarino M, Torre V


Sci Rep. 2015 Apr 24;5:9562. doi: 10.1038/srep09562

From 2D to 3D: novel nanostructured scaffolds to investigate signalling in reconstructed neuronal networks

Bosi S, Rauti R, Laishram J, Turco A, Lonardoni D, Nieus T, Prato M, Scaini D, Ballerini L.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Jul 7;112(27):E3619-28.

A structural, functional, and computational analysis suggests pore flexibility as the base for the poor selectivity of CNG channels

Napolitano LM, Bisha I, De March M, Marchesi A, Arcangeletti M, Demitri N, Mazzolini M, Rodriguez A, Magistrato A, Onesti S, Laio A, Torre V.

Nat Commun. 2015 Oct 7;6:8512. doi: 10.1038/ncomms9512.

Membrane stiffening by STOML3 facilitates mechanosensation in sensory neurons

Qi Y, Andolfi L, Frattini F, Mayer F, Lazzarino M, Hu J

Front. Cell. Neurosci. 9:333 (2015). DOI: 10.3389/fncel.2015.00333

Cdc42 and RhoA reveal different spatio-temporal dynamics upon local stimulation with Semaphorin-3A

Iseppon F, Napolitano LMR, Torre V and Cojoc D

Small. 2014 Mar 20. doi: 10.1002/smll.201400245.

A DNA Origami Nanorobot Controlled by Nucleic Acid Hybridization

Torelli E, Marini M, Palmano S, Piantanida L, Polano C, Scarpellini A, Lazzarino M, Firrao G.

PLoS One. 2014 Nov 12;9(11):e112582. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0112582. eCollection 2014.

Investigation of Adhesion and Mechanical Properties of Human Glioma Cells by Single Cell Force Spectroscopy and Atomic Force Microscopy

Andolfi L, Bourkoula E, Migliorini E, Palma A, Pucer A, Skrap M, Scoles G, Beltrami AP, Cesselli D, Lazzarino M


Latest Projects

ByAxon - Towards an active bypass for neural reconnection

ByAxon is devoted to the development of a new generation of sensors and electrodes based on nanotechnology materials for neural interfacing.


This proposed flagship aims to take graphene and related layered materials from a state of raw potential to a point where they can revolutionize mult...read more

Neuroscaffolds - Rapid prototyping scaffolds for the nervous system

Advanced tissue engineering requires scaffolds fabricated at different scales to facilitate cellular repair. Neurons respond to micro and nanopattern...read more

Focus - Single Molecule Activation and Computing

The main objective of this project was the development of new MDs. This major objective was based on the realization of supporting technological adva...read more

In Vitro locomotor patterns - Innovative protocols of electrical stimulation to activate the in vitro locomotor pattern

In these last years, growing attention has been drawn upon the use of epidural electrical stimulation applied to the dorsal spinal cord to counteract...read more

Trigeminal pain and migraine - Molecular mechanisms of trigeminal pain with particular emphasis on migraine

This project combines molecular biology, confocal microscopy, cell biology and electrophysiology to understand the process of pain transduction by tr...read more
student's voice

Copyright © 2013 SISSA. Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati

via Bonomea, 265 - 34136 Trieste ITALY