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Francesco Papaleo

Senior Researcher Tenured - Principal Investigator
Tenured Senior Researcher and Group Leader

Research Line

Genetics of Cognition


IIT Central Research Labs Genova


Via Morego 30
+39 010 2896 786
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April 2019- present: Tenured Senior Researcher, Neuroscience Area, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova, Italy.

January 2013- present: Adjunct Faculty Investigator, Lieber Institute for Brain Development. Baltimore, MD, USA.

February 2014- March 2019: Senior Researcher, Neuroscience and Brain Technologies Department, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova, Italy.

December 2011- February 2014: Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacological Sciences, University of Padova, Italy.

September 2010- February 2014: Tenure Track-1, Team Leader, Neuroscience and Brain Technologies Department, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova, Italy.

September 2005- August 2010: Post Doctoral Fellow, Clinical Brain Disorders Branch, National Institute of Mental Health, NIH, Bethesda, USA. Supervisors: Dr. Daniel R. Weinberger and Dr. Jacqueline N. Crawley.

January 2005- August 2005: “Assistant Associé”, University of Bordeaux 2, France, Supervisors: Prof. Antoine Tabarin and Dr. Angelo Contarino.

July 2004- December 2004: Researcher, University of Bordeaux, France. Supervisors: Prof. Antoine Tabarin and Dr. Angelo Contarino.

September 2003- July 2004: Researcher, INSERM Unit 588, “Laboratoire de Physiopathologie du Comportement”, Bordeaux, France. Supervisors: Dr. Pier Vincenzo Piazza and Dr. Angelo Contarino.

January 2002- March 2005: PhD Student in Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Padova, Italy. Supervisor: Dr. Angelo Contarino.

October 1996- November 2001: Pharmacy graduate studies (110/110 cum Laude), University of Padova, Italy.


February 2020- February 2023: Principal Investigator. Fondazione Telethon – project GGP19103, title: “Improving developmental trajectories in 22q11.2 deletion syndrome by oxytocin: focus on anti-inflammatory effects”.

November 2018- November 2021: Principal Investigator. Ricerca Finalizzata Giovani Ricercatori 2016 - Ministero Salute – project GR-2016-02362413, title: “Dysbindin-antipsychotics psychophamarcogenetics: a mouse-human translational study towards personalized healthcare in bipolar disorders”.

September 2018- September 2020: Supervisor and hosting lab. Marie Sklodowska-Curie individual Fellowships European to Celine Devroye. SOCIALBRAINCIRCUITS.

July 2018- August 2020: Principal Investigator. Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma. Title: “Role of the frontocortical-parvalbumin system in higher-order cognitive functions and in the onset of cognitive deficits induced by schizophrenia-relevant mutations”.

October 2018: Principal Investigator. The MINDDS Action of the European COST Association (eCOST). Training school/hands-on workshop in “Convergence Neuroscience: bridging the gap between human patients and animal models of neurodevelopmental disorders”.

March 2016- December 2018: Principal Investigator. Compagnia di San Paolo grant n. 2015-0321. Title: “Utilizzo di variazioni genetiche in dysbindin-1 (dtnbp1) per lo sviluppo di trattamenti più efficaci e personalizzati per la schizofrenia”.

September 2015- March 2018: Principal Investigator. Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, 2015 NARSAD Independent Investigator grant n. 23234; Title: “Use of genetic-driven dysbindin-1 (DTNBP1) variations for more effective and personalized treatments in First Episode of Psychosis”.

January 2013- January 2017: Principal Investigator. Roche Postdoc Fellowship Program; title: “D2L/S-dysbindin genetic interaction: towards early detection and personalized interventions for cognitive deficits and schizophrenia”.

January 2014- December 2015: in charge of a work package. 2013 NARSAD Young Investigator grant. Title: “Indicated prevention with long-chain polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids in patients with 22q11 microdeletion syndrome genetically at high risk for psychosis: A randomised, double blind, placebo-controlled treatment trial”.

January 2013- May 2016: Principal Investigator. Ricerca Finalizzata Giovani Ricercatori 2010 - Ministero Salute – project GR-2010-2315883, title: “Schizophrenia pathogenetic mechanisms associated to dysbindin dysfunctions in fly and mouse models”.

September 2010- September 2014: Principal Investigator. Marie Curie FP7-Reintegration-Grants Call identifier: FP7-PEOPLE-2010-RG Grant n.268247 – SCHIZOGENES.

August 2008-August 2010: Principal Investigator. NIMH Julius Axelrod Memorial Fellowship Training Award. Behavioral characterization of genetically modified mice for schizophrenia-associated susceptibility genes.


Overreaching Research Goals

- To implement more efficient and biologically-supported personalized medicine for cognitive and social alterations relevant to psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders.

- To develop a bidirectional mouse-human approach to accelerate the development of precision medicine strategies, with a deeper understanding of the biological mechanisms involved.

- To investigate genetics, circuits, and cell-type specific mechanisms underlying higher-order cognitive and social processes.

- To understand the brain-immune system interplay in modulating cognitive and social functions, their developmental trajectories, and the impact of early treatments.




The cognitive control of behavior, including the selection and execution of goal-directed actions, is a highly heritable trait and a major determinant of our health and well-being. Alterations in cognitive control are shared common features of different psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders such as schizophrenia, autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and bipolar disorder. Notably, cognitive deficits in these disorders are currently considered the main source of disability, having the most critical impact on the daily life of the patients and their relatives, on public health and long-term outcomes.

Our first scientific effort is to develop effective preclinical tools to study higher-order cognitive abilities with high translational validity from/to humans, while taking advantage of the outstanding advanced molecular and mechanistic tools available for mice. Importantly, we are interested in how cognitive functions change in males and females throughout development. The domains we are most focused on are: working memory, attentional control, executive functions and flexibility.



In social species, high-level cognitive functions are strongly interconnected with social abilities and social context. Social interactions depend on our ability to decipher expressions of emotions in others. This biological process, defined as “social cognition”, has profound implications in everyone’s life. Consistently, disturbances in this domain are early and distinctive features of many psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders including autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia. However, despite the deleterious impact on the everyday life of these subjects, social cognitive impairments still miss an effective treatment.

We focus on addressing the cellular mechanisms underlying the ability to discriminate conspecifics based on positive or negative emotional states, and the correlation of these processes with other forms of social behaviors. We are particularly interested on the implication and interplay of different cell types (neurons and glial cells) and systems, such as neuropeptides (e.g. oxytocin, corticotropin releasing factor, somatostatin), and neurotransmitters (e.g. dopamine, endocannabinoids).



Psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders such as schizophrenia, autism spectrum disorders, ADHD, and bipolar disorder are characterized by a strong genetic component and a robust correlation with cognitive/social dysfunctions. From a therapeutic perspective, “diagnostics” boundaries in psychiatry might be refined by genetically informed analyses and/or overcome by a focus on basic dimensions of functioning. Notably, diagnostic- and empirically-based therapeutics often produce inefficient and highly variable responses, especially for cognitive and social deficits. Clinical guidelines strongly recommend adapting treatments to each individual case but, so far, no biomarkers exist to implement personalized treatments.

We aim to provide new knowledge on the mechanistic bases of the unpredictable variability of treatment efficacy in cognitive and social processes, by considering the impact of genetic variations, critical developmental periods and sex differences. In particular, we test specific hypotheses regarding functional common genetic variants, epistatic interactions or specific copy number variants syndromes, with high penetrance in the development of schizophrenia, autism and ADHD (e.g. 22q11.2, 16p11.2).



Increasing evidence is strengthening the hypothesis that immune vulnerability and altered inflammatory responses might play a pivotal role in the pathophysiology of neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism, ADHD, and schizophrenia. In particular, early alterations in immune activity have been linked with aberrant developmental trajectories in cognitive and social processes.

We aim to investigate the immune-brain communication as the base of alterations in cognitive and social processes, as well as treatment responses. In particular, we study copy number variants microdeletion syndromes with robust penetrance in the development of schizophrenia, autism and ADHD (e.g. 22q11.2, 16p11.2), as a unique opportunity to address the interplay between genetic- and immune-vulnerability in the development of cognitive and social alterations.

Selected Publications


  1. Espinoza S, Scarpato M, Damiani D, Managò F, Mereu M, Contestabile A, Peruzzo O, Carninci P, Santoro C, Papaleo F, Mingozzi F, Ronzitti G, Zucchelli S, Gustincich S. SINEUP Non-coding RNA Targeting GDNF Rescues Motor Deficits and Neurodegeneration in a Mouse Model of Parkinson's Disease. Molecular Therapy. 2019 Aug 16. doi: 10.1016/j.ymthe.2019.08.005.
  1. Leggio GM, Torrisi SA, Mastrogiacomo R, Mauro D, Chisari M, Devroye C, Scheggia D, Nigro M, Geraci F, Pintori N, Giurdanella G, Costa L, Bucolo C, Ferretti V, Sortino MA, Ciranna L, De Luca MA, Mereu M, Managò F, Salomone S, Drago F, Papaleo F*. The epistatic interaction between the dopamine D3 receptor and dysbindin-1 modulates higher-order cognitive functions in mice and humans. Molecular Psychiatry. 2019 Sep 6. doi: 10.1038/s41380-019-0511-4. *Corresponding author.
  1. Gorinski N, Bijata M, Prasad S, Wirth A, Abdel Galil D, Zeug A, Bazovkina D, Kondaurova E, Kulikova E, Ilchibaeva T, Zareba-Koziol M, Papaleo F, Scheggia D, Kochlamazashvili G, Dityatev A, Smyth I, Krzystyniak A, Wlodarczyk J, Richter DW, Strekalova T, Sigrist S, Bang C, Hobuß L, Fiedler J, Thum T, Naumenko VS, Pandey G, Ponimaskin E. Attenuated palmitoylation of serotonin receptor 5-HT1A affects receptor function and contributes to depression-like behaviors. Nature Communications. 2019 Sep 2;10(1):3924. doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-11876-5.
  2. Contarini G, Ferretti V, Papaleo F*. Acute Administration of URB597 Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase Inhibitor Prevents Attentional Impairments by Distractors in Adolescent Mice. Frontiers in Pharmacology. 2019 Jul 19;10:787. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.00787. *Corresponding author.
  1. Ferretti V, Maltese F, Contarini G, Nigro M, Bonavia A, Huang H, Morelli G, Scheggia D, Managò F, Castellani G, Cancedda L, Chini B, Grinevich V, Papaleo F*. Oxytocin Signaling in the Central Amygdala Modulates Emotion Discrimination in Mice. Current Biology. 2019. 29, 1–16 June 17, *Corresponding author.
  1. Castellani G, Contarini G, Mereu M, Albanesi E, Devroye C, D’Amore C, Ferretti V, De Martin S, Papaleo F*.Dopamine–Mediated Immunomodulation affects Choroid Plexus Function. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity. 2019 June 5. *Corresponding author.
  1. Morè L, Lauterborn JC, Papaleo F*, Brambilla R. Enhancing cognition through pharmacological and environmental interventions: examples from preclinical models of neurodevelopmental disorders. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2019 Apr 10. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2019.02.003. Review. *Corresponding author.
  1. Ferretti V, Papaleo F*. Understanding others: emotion recognition abilities in humans and other animals. Genes, Brain Behavior. 2018. Dec13:e12544. doi:10.1111/gbb.12544. *Corresponding author.
  1. Szczurkowska J, Pischedda F, Pinto B, Managò F, Haas CA, Summa M, Bertorelli R, Papaleo F, Schäfer MK, Piccoli G, Cancedda L. NEGR1 and FGFR2 cooperatively regulate cortical development and core behaviours related to autism disorders in mice. Brain. 2018 Jul 27. doi: 10.1093/brain/awy190.
  1. Scheggia D, Mastrogiacomo R, Mereu M, Sannino S, Straub RE, Armando M, Managò F, Guadagna S, Piras F, Zhang F, Kleinman JE, Hyde TM, Kaalund SS, Pontillo M, Orso G, Caltagirone C, Borrelli E, De Luca MA, Vicari S, Weinberger DR, Spalletta G, Papaleo F*. Variations in Dysbindin-1 are associated with cognitive response to antipsychotic drug treatment. Nature Communications. 2018 Jun 11;9(1):2265. doi:10.1038/s41467-018-04711-w. *Corresponding author.
  1. Trusel M, Baldrighi M, Marotta R, Gatto F, Pesce M, Frasconi M, Catelani T, Papaleo F, Pompa PP, Tonini R, Giordani S. Internalization of Carbon Nano-onions by Hippocampal Cells Preserves Neuronal Circuit Function and Recognition Memory. ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2018 May 23;10(20):16952-16963. doi:10.1021/acsami.7b17827. Epub 2018 May 9.
  1. Carr GV, Maltese F, Sibley DR, Weinberger DR, Papaleo F*. The Dopamine D5 Receptor Is Involved in Working Memory. Frontiers in Pharmacology. 2017. Oct 6;8:666. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2017.00666. *Corresponding author.
  1. Amato D, Vernon AC, Papaleo F. Dopamine, the antipsychotic molecule: a perspective on mechanisms underlying antipsychotic response variability. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews. 2018 Feb;85:146-159. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2017.09.027. Epub 2017 Sep 29.
  1. Managò F & Papaleo F*. Schizophrenia: What’s Arc Got to Do with It? Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience. 2017. Sep 20; 11:181. doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2017.00181. *Corresponding author.
  1. Ciampoli M, Contarini G, Mereu M, Papaleo F*. Attentional Control in Adolescent Mice Assessed with a Modified Five Choice Serial Reaction Time Task. Scientific Reports. 2017 Aug 30;7(1):9936. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-10112-8. *Corresponding author.
  1. Scheggia D, Zamberletti E, Realini N, Mereu M, Contarini G, Ferretti V, Managò F, Margiani G, Brunoro R, Rubino T, De Luca MA, Piomelli D, Parolaro D, Papaleo F*. Remote memories are enhanced by COMT activity through dysregulation of the endocannabinoid system in the prefrontal cortex. Molecular Psychiatry. 2018 Apr;23(4):1040-1050. doi:10.1038/mp.2017.126. Epub 2017 Jun20. *Corresponding author.
  1. Sannino S, Padula MC, Managò F, Schaer M, Schneider M, Armando M, Scariati E, Sloan-Bena F, Mereu M, Pontillo M, Vicari S, Contarini G, Chiabrera C, Pagani M, Gozzi A, Eliez S, Papaleo F*. Adolescence is the starting point of sex-dichotomous COMT genetic effects. Transl Psychiatry. 2017 May 30;7(5):e1141. doi: 10.1038/tp.2017.109. *Corresponding author.
  1. Mereu M, Contarini G, Buonaguro EF, Latte G, Managò F, Iasevoli F, de Bartolomeis A, Papaleo F*. Dopamine transporter (DAT) genetic hypofunction in mice produces alterations consistent with ADHD but not schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. Neuropharmacology. 2017 Jul 15;121:179-194. doi:10.1016/j.neuropharm.2017.04.037. Epub 2017 Apr 26. *Corresponding author.
  1. Huang H, Guadagna S, Mereu M, Ciampoli M, Pruzzo G, Ballard T, Papaleo F*. A schizophrenia relevant 5-Choice Serial Reaction Time Task for mice assessing broad monitoring, distractibility and impulsivity. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2017 Jul;234(13):2047-2062. doi:10.1007/s00213-017-4611-z. Epub 2017 Apr 5. *Corresponding author.
  1. Contarino A, Kitchener P, Vallée M, Papaleo F, Piazza PV. CRF1 receptor-deficiency increases cocaine reward. Neuropharmacology. 2017 May 1;117:41-48. doi: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2017.01.024. Epub 2017 Jan 27.
  1. Galbusera A, De Felice A, Stefano G, Bassetto G, Maschietto M, Nishimori K, Chini B, Papaleo F, Vassanelli S, Gozzi A. Intranasal Oxytocin and Vasopressin Modulate Divergent Brainwide Functional Substrates. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2017 Jun;42(7):1420-1434. doi: 10.1038/npp.2016.283. Epub 2016 Dec 20.
  1. Managò F, Mereu M, Mastwal S, Mastrogiacomo R, Scheggia D, Emanuele M, De Luca MA, Weinberger DR, Wang KH, Papaleo F*. Genetic Disruption of Arc/Arg3.1 in Mice Causes Alterations in Dopamine and Neurobehavioral Phenotypes Related to Schizophrenia. Cell Reports. 2016 Aug 23;16(8):2116-28. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2016.07.044. *Corresponding author.
  1. Carr GV, Chen J, Yang F, Ren M, Yuan P, Tian Q, Bebensee A, Zhang GY, Du J, Glineburg P, Xun R, Akhile O, Akuma D, Pickel J, Barrow JC, Papaleo F, Weinberger DR. KCNH2-3.1 expression impairs cognition and alters neuronal function in a model of molecular pathology associated with schizophrenia. Molecular Psychiatry. 2016 Nov;21(11):1517-1526. doi: 10.1038/mp.2015.219.
  1. Papaleo F, Yang F, Paterson C, Palumbo S, Carr GV, Wang Y, Floyd K, Huang W, Thomas CJ, Chen J, Weinberger DR, Law AJ. Behavioral, Neurophysiological, and Synaptic Impairment in a Transgenic Neuregulin1 (NRG1-IV) Murine Schizophrenia Model. J Neurosci. 2016 Apr 27;36(17):4859-75. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.4632-15.2016.
  1. Scheggia D, Papaleo F*. An Operant Intra-/Extra-dimensional Set-shift Task for Mice. J Vis Exp. 2016 Jan 22;(107). doi: 10.3791/53503. *Corresponding author.
  1. Huang H, Papaleo F*. Genetic modulation of oxytocin's effects in social functioning. Ann Transl Med. 2015 Dec;3(22):348. doi: 10.3978/j.issn.2305-5839.2015.09.36. *Corresponding author.
  1. Papaleo F*, Sannino S, Piras F, Spalletta G. Sex-dichotomous effects of functional COMT genetic variations on cognitive functions disappear after menopause in both health and schizophrenia. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2015 Dec;25(12):2349-63. doi: 10.1016/j.euroneuro.2015.10.005. *Corresponding author.
  1. Armando M, De Crescenzo F, Vicari S, Digilio MC, Pontillo M, Papaleo F, Amminger GP. Indicated prevention with long-chain polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids in patients with 22q11DS genetically at high risk for psychosis. Protocol of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled treatment trial. Early Interv Psychiatry. 2016 Oct;10(5):390-6. doi: 10.1111/eip.12197. Epub 2014 Oct 24.
  1. Moran PM, O'Tuathaigh CM, Papaleo F, Waddington JL. Dopaminergic function in relation to genes associated with risk for schizophrenia: translational mutant mouse models. Prog Brain Res. 2014; 211:79-112. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-444-63425-2.00004-0.
  1. Sannino S, Gozzi A, Cerasa A, Piras F, Scheggia D, Manago F, Damiano M, Galbusera A, Erickson LC, Tonelli DDT, Bifone A, Tsaftaris SA, Caltagirone C, Weinberger DR, Spalletta G, Papaleo F*. COMT Genetic Reduction Produces Sexually Divergent Effects on Cortical Anatomy and Working Memory in Mice and Humans. Cerebral Cortex 2015; Sep;25(9):2529-41. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhu053. Epub 2014 Mar 21. *Corresponding author.
  1. Huang H, Michetti C, Busnelli M, Managò F, Sannino S, Scheggia D, Giancardo L, Sona D, Murino V, Chini B, Luisa Scattoni M, Papaleo F*. Chronic and Acute Intranasal Oxytocin Produce Divergent Social Effects in Mice. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2014 Apr;39(5):1102-14. doi: 10.1038/npp.2013.310. Epub 2013 Nov 4. *Corresponding author.
  1. Papaleo F*, Burdick MC, Callicott JH, Weinberger DR. Epistatic interaction between COMT and DTNBP1 modulates prefrontal function in mice and in humans. Molecular Psychiatry. 2014 Mar;19(3):311-6. doi: 10.1038/mp.2013.133. Epub 2013 Oct 22. *Corresponding author.
  1. Giancardo L, Sona D, Huang H, Sannino S, Managò F, Scheggia D, Papaleo F*, Murino V. Automatic visual tracking and social behaviour analysis with multiple mice. PLoS One. 2013 Sep 16;8(9):e74557. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0074557. *Corresponding author.
  1. Scheggia D, Bebensee A, Weinberger DR, Papaleo F*. The Ultimate Intra/Extradimensional Attentional Set-Shifting Task for Mice. Biol Psychiatry. 2014 Apr 15;75(8):660-70. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2013.05.021. Epub 2013 Jun 28. *Corresponding author.
  1. Carr GV, Jenkins KA, Weinberger DR, Papaleo F*. Loss of dysbindin-1 in mice impairs reward-based operant learning by increasing impulsive and compulsive behavior. Behav Brain Res. 2013 Mar 15;241:173-84. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2012.12.021. Epub 2012 Dec 20. *Corresponding author.
  1. Papaleo F*, Erickson L, Liu G, Chen J, Weinberger DR. Effects of sex and COMT genotype on environmentally modulated cognitive control in mice. PNAS. 2012 Dec 4;109(49):20160-5. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1214397109. Epub 2012 Nov 19. *Corresponding author.
  1. Armando M, SabaR, MonducciE, Papaleo F, Dario C, RighettiV, BrandizziM, FioriP. Subtypes of psychotic-like experiences in a community sample of young adults: socio-demographic correlates and substance use. Rivista di Psichiatria, 2012, 47, 5: 424-431.
  1. Law AJ, Wang Y, Sei Y, O'Donnell P, Piantadosi P, Papaleo F, Straub RE, Huang W, Thomas CJ, Vakkalanka R, Besterman AD, Lipska BK, Hyde TM, Harrison PJ, Kleinman JE, Weinberger DR. Neuregulin 1-ErbB4-PI3K signaling in schizophrenia and phosphoinositide 3-kinase-p110δ inhibition as a potential therapeutic strategy. PNAS. 2012 Jul 24;109(30):12165-70. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1206118109. Epub 2012 Jun 11.
  1. Scheggia D, Sannino S, Scattoni ML, Papaleo F*. COMT as a drug target for cognitive functions and dysfunctions. CNS & Neurological Disorders-Drug Targets. 2012 May;11(3):209-21. Review. *Corresponding author.
  1. Armando M, Papaleo F, Vicari S. COMT implication in cognitive and psychiatric symptoms in chromosome 22q11 microdeletion syndrome. CNS & Neurological Disorders-Drug Targets. 2012 May;11(3):273-81. Review.
  1. Papaleo F*. COMT as a Drug Target for Nervous System Disorders. CNS & Neurological Disorders-Drug Targets. 2012 May;11(3):193-4. *Corresponding author.
  1. Ingallinesi M, Rouibi K, Le Moine C, Papaleo F, Contarino A. CRF2 receptor-deficiency eliminates opiate withdrawal distress without impairing stress-coping. Molecular Psychiatry. 2012 Dec;17(12):1283-94. doi: 10.1038/mp.2011.119. Epub 2011 Sep 27.
  1. Papaleo F*, Yang F, Garcia S, Chen J, Lu B, Crawley JN, Weinberger DR. Dysbindin-1 modulates prefrontal cortical activity and schizophrenia-like behaviors via dopamine/D2 pathways. Molecular Psychiatry 2012 Jan; 17(1):85-98. doi: 10.1038/mp.2010.106. Epub 2010 Oct 19. *Corresponding author.
  1. Papaleo F*, Silverman JL, Aney J, Tian Q, Barkan CL, Chadman KK, Crawley JN. Working memory deficits, increased anxiety-like traits and seizure susceptibility in BDNF overexpressing mice. Learning & Memory. 2011 Jul 26;18(8):534-44. Print 2011 Aug. *Corresponding author.
  2. Papaleo F*, Lipska BK, Weinberger DR. Mouse models of genetic effects on cognition: Relevance to schizophrenia. Neuropharmacology. 2012 Mar;62(3):1204-20. Epub 2011 May 5.*Corresponding author.
  1. Papaleo F, Weinberger DR. Dysbindin and Schizophrenia: It’s dopamine and glutamate all over again. Biological Psychiatry. 2011 January 1; 69(1): 2-4.
  1. Ji Y, Yang F, Papaleo F, Wang HX, Gao WJ, Weinberger DR, Lu B. Role of dysbindin in dopamine receptor trafficking and cortical GABA function. PNAS. 2009 Nov 17; 106(46):19593-19598. Epub 2009 Nov 3.
  1. Papaleo F, Crawley JN, Song J, Lipska BK, Pickel J, Weinberger DR, Chen J. Genetic dissection of the role of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase in cognition and stress reactivity in mice. Neurosci. 2008 Aug 27; 28(35):8709-23. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2077-08.2008.
  2. Papaleo F, Ghozland S, Ingallinesi M, Roberts AJ, Koob GF, Contarino A. Disruption of the CRF2 receptor pathway decreases the somatic expression of opiate withdrawal. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2008 Nov;33(12):2878-87. Epub 2008 Feb 20.
  1. Papaleo F, Kieffer BL, Tabarin A, Contarino A. Decreased motivation to eat in µ-opioid receptor-deficient mice. European Journal of Neuroscience. 2007 Jun; 25(11):3398-3405.
  1. Papaleo F, Kitchener P, Contarino. Disruption of the CRF/CRF1 receptor stress system exacerbates the somatic signs of opiate withdrawal. Neuron. 2007 Feb 15;53(4):577-589.
  1. Papaleo F and Contarino A. Gender- and morphine dose-linked expression of spontaneous somatic opiate withdrawal in mice. Behavioural Brain Research. 2006 Jun 3; 170(1):110-8.
  1. Contarino A and Papaleo F. The corticotropin-releasing factor receptor-1 pathway mediates the negative affective states of opiate withdrawal. PNAS. 2005 Dec 20; 102(51):18649-18654.


Book chapters:

  1. Scheggia D, Papaleo F. The Genetics of Cognition in Schizophrenia: Combining Mouse and Human Studies. In: Neuro-Phenome, Handbook of Neurobehavioral Genetics and Phenotyping. Wiley Blackwell 2017. Chapter 6, pages 115-132.
  1. Managó F, Huang H, Papaleo F. Modeling cognitive impairment. In: Modeling Psychopathological Dimensions of Schizophrenia: From Molecules to Behavior. Handbooks of Behavioral Neuroscience, volume 23. Academic Press, Elsevier 2016. Chapter 6, pages 69-84.
  1. Papaleo F, Chen J, Weinberger DR. Animal models of genetic effects on cognition. In: The Genetics of Cognitive Neuroscience. MIT press. 2009. Chapter 3, pages 51-94.




Papaleo Google Scholar



October 2018: Scientific Director and Organizer of the Training school/hands-on workshop in “Convergence Neuroscience: bridging the gap between human patients and animal models of neurodevelopmental disorders”. Genova, Italy.

December 2017: travel award, ACNP 56th Annual Meeting, USA.

July 2017: Scientific Director and Organizer of the International Summer School of Neuroscience. Noto, Italy.

March 2015: Spring 2015 JOVE/Med Associates Competition.

April 2014: the Marie Curie Alumni Association Travel Grant.

November 2012: Winter Conference on Brain Research Travel Fellowship Award.

May 2009: award as a Preceptor in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Student Internship Program.

August 2008: two-year NIMH Julius Axelrod Memorial Fellowship Training Award.

May 2008: award as a Preceptor in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Student Internship Program.

May 2007: mentor to prize winner of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Neuroscience Research Prize; Boston, annual meeting of the AAN.

September 2005- August 2010: fellowship, National Institute of Mental Health, NIH, USA.

January 2002- December 2004: doctoral fellowship, pharmacology program, University of Padova, Italy.

October 2003: scholarship from the Italian Society of Pharmacology.


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