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Marco Pagani

Marie Curie Global Research Fellow

Research Line

Functional Neuroimaging


CNCS@UniTn Trento


Palazzo Fedrigotti, Corso Bettini 31
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Short Bio

Marco Pagani is a Marie Curie Global Research Fellow at the Functional Neuroimaging Laboratory of Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy) and at the Autism Center of Child Mind Institute (New York).

His main research interest is to use magnetic resonance imaging and advanced computational methods to study the architecture of the rodent and human brain and its alterations in pathological states. By adopting translationally-relevant functional measurements, Dr. Pagani has identified network-level alterations associated to genetic causes of autism spectrum disorder in multiple mouse models. Building upon his expertise in neuroimaging, computer science and statistics, his current research aims to develop novel cross-species approaches to decompose the multilevel heterogeneity of autism into neuro-functional subtypes. During his doctoral training, he has also pioneered the use of structural covariance in small rodents leading to the identification of gray matter networks recapitulating the organization of the human brain.

Marco Pagani is author and co-author of over 30 publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals, including Brain, Journal of Neuroscience, NeuroImage and Science Advances. He has been also selected to present at Italian, US and international scientific conferences. His current research is founded by a competitive European Union grant scheme for young researchers.



2020-2023: Marie Curie Global Fellow at the Functional Neuroimaging Laboratory, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Rovereto (TN) and at the Autism Center, Child Mind Institute (Manhattan, NYC).

2016-2020: Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Functional Neuroimaging Laboratory of the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Rovereto (TN) within a project aimed at mapping putative large scale brain network dysfunctions associated to autism-causing genetic mutations.

2013-2016: Doctoral researcher at the Functional Neuroimaging Laboratory of the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Rovereto (TN). My research project focussed on the development and application of image processing tools to structural MRI data to map large scale gray-matter volumes and covariance networks in the mouse brain.

2010-2013: Junior researcher at the Coma Research Centre coordinated by the Neurology, Public Health and Disability Unit of the Neurological Institute Carlo Besta IRCCS Foundation, Milan (MI). My research focused on studying the disability of patients in vegetative and minimally conscious state and the quality of life of their caregivers.

2010: Research assistant at the Biosignal Analysis Centre of Experimental Neurology, Vita-Salute San Raffaele Hospital, Milan (MI). My research focused on bridging neuropsychological assessment and diffusion weighted imaging data in patients with multiple sclerosis.


Other Activities

2015-2016: Collaborator of the start-up R.A.W Ltd in a project aimed to provide neurosurgeons with 3d reconstruction of segmented MRI brain images for tumour surgery.

2013-2017: Collaborator as exam committee member in Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology at eCampus University in Novedrate (CO).


Academic Education

2013-2016: PhD in Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Center for Mind and Brain Sciences, University of Trento (TN) with a scholarship awarded by Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia. 

2012-2013: MSc in Cognitive Neuroscience at Vita-Salute San Raffaele University in Milan (MI), awarded with full marks.

2008-2009: MSc in Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience at Goldsmiths College - University of London (UK), achieved with distinction.

2004-2007: Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Vita-Salute San Raffaele University in Milan (MI), awarded with full marks.


translational imaging brain connectivity statistics autism


2020-2023: "CANSAS - Clustering functional connectivity alterations in Autism Spectrum Disorder" awared by European Union. Role: Coordinator.

2016-2020: "Neurobiological basis of connectivity alterations in autism" supported by SFARI Foundation. Role: Post-doctoral Research Fellow.

2013-2016: Phd scholarship “Investigating the mouse brain connectome with MRI” awarded by Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia. Role: PhD student.

2010-2013: "Start-up Coma Research Center" supported by Regione Lombardia. Role: Pre-doctoral researcher.

Selected Publications

Pagani M, Bertero A, Trakoshis S, Ulysse L, Locarno A, Miseviciute I, De Felice A, Canella C, Supekar K, Galbusera A, Menon V, Tonini R, Deco G, Lombardo MV, Pasqualetti M, Gozzi A (2020). A cross‐species link between mTOR‐related synaptic pathology and functional hyperconnectivity in autism, biorchive.

Pagani M, Bertero A, Liska A, Galbusera A, Sabbioni M, Barsotti N, Colenbier N, Marinazzo D, Scattoni ML, Pasqualetti M, Gozzi A (2019). Deletion of autism risk gene Shank3 disrupts prefrontal connectivity, Journal of Neuroscience. 39:5299-5310.

Bertero A*, Liska A*, Pagani M*, Parolisi R, Masferrer ME, Gritti M, Pedrazzoli M, Galbusera A, Sarica A, Cerasa A, Buffelli M, Tonini R, Buffo A, Gross C, Pasqualetti M, Gozzi A (2018). Autism-associated 16p11.2 microdeletion impairs prefrontal functional connectivity in mouse and human. Brain, 141:2055-2065..

Pagani M, Bifone A, Gozzi A (2016). Networks of anatomical covariance in the mouse brain. NeuroImage, 129:55-63.

Pagani M, Damiano M, Galbusera A, Tsaftaris SA, Gozzi A (2016). Semi-automated registration-based volumetric labelling, voxel based morphometry and cortical thickness mapping of the mouse brain. J Neurosci Meth, 267:62-73.


2016: Magna cum laude for the poster “Pagani M, Bifone A, Gozzi A. Gray matter networks of the mouse brain.” at ISMRM in Singapore.

2016: Magna cum laude for the poster “Pagani M, Damiano M, Galbusera A, Tsaftaris SA, Gozzi A. An automated pipeline for mouse brain morphometric MRI.” at ISMRM in Singapore.


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