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    Istituto di Scienze della Vita

The scientific mission of the Institute of Life Sciences covers two macro-areas:

  • Agricultural Sciences and Plant Biotechnology
  • Biomedical Sciences

Our aim is to provide a multifaceted and challenging scientific environment to a broad spectrum of students: undergraduates, postgraduates and PhD. Courses and research activities span from classical and molecular human and plant biology to preclinical and clinical sciences, plant biotechnology, food quality and nutraceutics, agroecology and agrobiodiversity, and novel sustainable agricultural systems. Strong emphasis is placed on technological innovation.

Lecturers have strong scientific expertise often acquired in a multidisciplinary international environment.

Research carried out in the macro-area Agricultural Sciences and plant Biotechnology addresses two main domains: plant sciences and agronomy, with a focus on various aspects of plant biology, food and energy crops, agrobiodiversity, and agroecosystem management.

Research carried out in the macro-area of Biomedical Sciences addresses the physiology and pathophysiology of the cardiovascular system, the development of new diagnostic techniques, and the application of nanotechnology to medicine.

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Research Area

A plant's eventual size depends on the integration of its genetic program with environmental cues, which vary on a daily basis. Both efficient carbon metabolism and the plant hormone gibberellin are required to guarantee optimal plant growth. Yet, little is known about the interplay between carbon metabolism and gibberellins that modulates plant growth.

Iodine deficiency is common throughout the less developed world, resulting in cretinism, goitre, immune incompetence and learning disabilities. Food supplements (e.g. iodized salts) are effective in some parts of the world, but fail in less developed countries because of infrastructure problems. Field fortification is therefore considered desirable.

The majority of eukaryotic organisms rely on molecular oxygen for respiratory energy production. When the supply of oxygen is hampered, a variety of acclimation responses is activated to reduce detrimental effects of energy depletion. Various oxygen sensing mechanisms have been described in the past to trigger these responses, but each of them appears to be kingdom specific and no sensor has been found in plants until now.

One of our major interests is the better understanding of mechanisms underlying vascular control in the fetus and the newborn in the period immediately following birth. These mechanisms are critical for the smooth transition from the intra- to the extra-uterine environment and they condition not only the well-being of the infant, but also any intervening therapeutic intervention.

In attesa di definizione.

In attesa di definizione.

At the Institute of Life Sciences, we conduct research on several aspects of plant physiology and genetics, from the responses to endogenous stimuli, such as hormones and sugars, to adaptation to e

The research focus of the Sustainable Agricultural Systems area is the study of effects of cropping system intensification by the evaluation of economic, environmental and social indicators at field, farm and regional level