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Francesca Cella

Researcher
Researcher

Research Line

Nanoscopy & NIC@IIT

Center

IIT Central Research Lab Genova

Contacts

Via Morego 30, Genova
+39 010 71781 320
01071781320
Contact Me

Social profiles

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About

 

Francesca Cella Zanacchi is currently a researcher at the IItalian Institute of Technology in Italy in the Nanophysics department. Previously, she worked as a Postdoc at the Institute de Ciències Fotòniques (ICFO) in Spain and as post-doctoral fellow in the Nanoscopy group at the Italian Institute of Technology. She graduated in Physics at the University of Genoa (Italy) in 2006 and in 2010 she accomplished her PhD studies in Physics (University of Genoa). She was a visitor scientist at EMBL (Heidelberg) in 2008 and at University of Maine (USA) in 2009. In December 2013 she joined the Single Molecule Biophysics group at University of Frankfurt as a short term EMBO fellowship. She works in the bioengineering/biophysics field and her research activity is focused on the design, realization and utilization of optical imaging techniques to study biomolecules at the molecular level in thick biological samples and tissues. Her work is mainly  addressed to the study of biological molecules to investigate cell functioning using super-resolution microscopy, single molecule localization techniques (PALM, GSDIM), single molecule tracking, single plane illumination microscopy (SPIM), confocal, multiphoton fluorescence microscopy, nanostructured model systems and advanced fluorescence microscopy techniques (FRAP). She worked as a working package leader for the RENVISION European project (FP7-ICT-2011-9 (NBIS) # 600847) and she is active as member of several scientific societies and as reviewer for several international scientific journals. 

 

CURRENT POSITION(S)

Oct 2016 - present               Researcher Nanophysics Dept, Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), Genoa (Italy)

                                     

PREVIOUS POSITIONS

Oct 2016 –Dec 2017            Visiting scientist The Institute of photonics sciences (ICFO), Barcelona (Spain).

May 2015 – Oct 2016           Post doc AFIB Group, The Institute of photonics sciences (ICFO), Barcelona (Spain).     

Jul 2014 – May 2015            Researcher Nanophysics Dept., Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), Genoa (Italy)

Dec 2013 – Feb 2014           EMBO short term fellowship University of Frankfurt, Frankfurt (Germany) 

Jan 2010 – Jul 2014             Post Doc Nanophysics Dept (Nanoscopy Group), Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), Genoa (Italy)

Aug 2009 – Dec 2009           Visiting research associate University of Maine, Orono, Maine (USA).

Aug 2008 – Dec 2008           Visiting scientist Light Microscopy Group – EMBL, Heidelberg, Germany

 

Education:

2007-2009                            Ph.D. Degree in Physics, Department of Physics, University of Genoa, Italy

 

2006                                      MSc. Degree  in Physics, Department of Physics, University of Genoa, Italy

 

International/national  Prizes and Awards:

2018                                      International travel award - Biophysical society meeting (S.Francisco, USA)

2012                                      TR35-Young innovators award Ed.2012 (Innovators Under 35) MIT T. Rev.)

2012                                      NEST Prize per la Nanoscienza Ed. 2012

2013                                      International travel award - Biophysical society meeting (Phyladelphia, USA)

2011                                      Best poster award at BIOS 2011 SPIE Photonics West Conference, 2011

2006                                      Prize for Degree Thesis in Physics: GIC Prize (Italian society of cytometry)

Activity within European projects: 

Working Package leader within the EU project RENVISION (Retina-inspired ENcoding for advanced VISION tasks) awarded within the initiative of Future Emerging Technologies: Neuro-Bio-Inspired Systems (NBIS).

 

Patent submitted:

Reference no: EP17382394.9 "Method for quantifying protein copy number" 

 

Projects

 Main research projects:

  • 3D super-resolution imaging techniques based on light sheet microscopy for thick biological samples
  • Novel approaches for quantitative single molecule localization based on DNA nanotechnologies (DNA origami)
  • Quantitative studies at the synaptic level using single molecule localization techniques: from cells to tissues

Awards

 

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I numeri di IIT

L’Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) è una fondazione di diritto privato - cfr. determinazione Corte dei Conti 23/2015 “IIT è una fondazione da inquadrare fra gli organismi di diritto pubblico con la scelta di un modello di organizzazione di diritto privato per rispondere all’esigenza di assicurare procedure più snelle nella selezione non solo nell’ambito nazionale dei collaboratori, scienziati e ricercatori ”.

IIT è sotto la vigilanza del Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca e del Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze ed è stato istituito con la Legge 326/2003. La Fondazione ha l'obiettivo di promuovere l'eccellenza nella ricerca di base e in quella applicata e di favorire lo sviluppo del sistema economico nazionale. La costruzione dei laboratori iniziata nel 2006 si è conclusa nel 2009.

Lo staff complessivo di IIT conta circa 1440 persone. L’area scientifica è rappresentata da circa l’85% del personale. Il 45% dei ricercatori proviene dall’estero: di questi, il 29% è costituito da stranieri provenienti da oltre 50 Paesi e il 16% da italiani rientrati. Oggi il personale scientifico è composto da circa 60 principal investigators, circa 110 ricercatori e tecnologi di staff, circa 350 post doc, circa 500 studenti di dottorato e borsisti, circa 130 tecnici. Oltre 330 posti su 1400 creati su fondi esterni. Età media 34 anni. 41% donne / 59 % uomini.

Nel 2015 IIT ha ricevuto finanziamenti pubblici per circa 96 milioni di euro (80% del budget), conseguendo fondi esterni per 22 milioni di euro (20% budget) provenienti da 18 progetti europei17 finanziamenti da istituzioni nazionali e internazionali, circa 60 progetti industriali

La produzione di IIT ad oggi vanta circa 6990 pubblicazioni, oltre 130 finanziamenti Europei e 11 ERC, più di 350 domande di brevetto attive, oltre 12 start up costituite e altrettante in fase di lancio. Dal 2009 l’attività scientifica è stata ulteriormente rafforzata con la creazione di dieci centri di ricerca nel territorio nazionale (a Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) e internazionale (MIT ed Harvard negli USA) che, unitamente al Laboratorio Centrale di Genova, sviluppano i programmi di ricerca del piano scientifico 2015-2017.

IIT: the numbers

Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) is a public research institute that adopts the organizational model of a private law foundation. IIT is overseen by Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca and Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze (the Italian Ministries of Education, Economy and Finance).  The Institute was set up according to Italian law 326/2003 with the objective of promoting excellence in basic and applied research andfostering Italy’s economic development. Construction of the Laboratories started in 2006 and finished in 2009.

IIT has an overall staff of about 1,440 people. The scientific staff covers about 85% of the total. Out of 45% of researchers coming from abroad 29% are foreigners coming from more than 50 countries and 16% are returned Italians. The scientific staff currently consists of approximately 60 Principal Investigators110 researchers and technologists350 post-docs and 500 PhD students and grant holders and 130 technicians. External funding has allowed the creation of more than 330 positions . The average age is 34 and the gender balance proportion  is 41% female against 59% male.

In 2015 IIT received 96 million euros in public funding (accounting for 80% of its budget) and obtained 22 million euros in external funding (accounting for 20% of its budget). External funding comes from 18 European Projects, other 17 national and international competitive projects and approximately 60 industrial projects.

So far IIT accounts for: about 6990 publications, more than 130 European grants and 11 ERC grants, more than 350 patents or patent applications12 up start-ups and as many  which are about to be launched. The Institute’s scientific activity has been further strengthened since 2009 with the establishment of 11 research nodes throughout Italy (Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) and abroad (MIT and Harvard University, USA), which, along with the Genoa-based Central Lab, implement the research programs included in the 2015-2017 Strategic Plan.