Università degli studi di Pavia


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De Rossi's CV

Office address: Department of Biology and Biotechnology “L. Spallanzani (Lab. of Genetics and Microbiology), University of Pavia - Via Ferrata 1, 27100 Pavia (Italy)
Phone: +39 0382985561; Fax: +39 0382528496; E-mail: edda.derossi@unipv.it

EDUCATION: High School Diploma, Scientific Liceum; Degree in Biological Science (University of Pavia); PhD Degree in Molecular Biotechnology (University of Piacenza).

PROFESSIONAL POSITIONS: 1992-1998: Technician at the Department of Genetics and Microbiology, University of Pavia; 1995: Stage in the laboratory of Génétique Moléculaire Bactérienne (Dr. Cole - Institute Pasteur, Paris, France); 1998-2004: Researcher at the Department of Genetics and Microbiology, University of Pavia; since 2005: Associate Professor of Microbiology, at the Department of Genetics and Microbiology, University of Pavia.
She is Member of the American Society of Microbiology and the Italian Microbiology and Microbial Biotechnology Association, referee for several international scientific journals (Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, Journal of Bacteriology, Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, Journal of Clinical Microbiology, FEMS Microbiology Letters) and granting agencies.

TEACHING EXPERIENCES: 1999-2004 - non-tenure Professor of General Microbiology (1999-2002) and Applied Microbiology (2000-2004), University of Pavia; since 2005 - Associate Professor of Microbiology (Biology degree), Applied Microbiology (Biotechnology degree), and Microbiological Analyses (Experimental and Applied Biology Specialistic degree), University of Pavia.


1) Identification of targets for new drugs in Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb)
The number of multidrug resistant (MDR) and extensively drug resistant (XDR) strains of Mtb are increasing and without effective treatments; the fear is that the number of infections caused by MDR and XDR strains will increase out of control. Therefore, new drugs of different classes against diverse targets are urgently needed.
BM212, belonging to a series of pyrrole derivatives, shows a potent activity against M. tuberculosis and MDR clinical isolates of Mtb as well as on intracellular bacilli. On the basis of these results, BM212 was considered the lead compound of this new class of derivatives. The Pavia team has identified the membrane protein MmpL3 as target for this compound.
As partner in the project “New medicines for tuberculosis – NM4TB” funded by EC-VI FP, the Pavia Team has identified the Mtb DprE1 enzyme as the target of a new drug, belonging to the class of benzothiazinones (BTZ). This enzyme is responsible for the arabinan synthesis, a key component of the mycobacterial cell wall.
A new project funded by EC-VII FP (More Medicines for Tuberculosis – MM4TB) started in February 2011 with the aim to identify new targets for new antitubercular drugs.

2) Efflux pumps and multidrug resistance in mycobacteria
Multidrug resistance (MDR), defined as the ability of microorganisms to show resistance to antibiotics, antiseptics and unrelated toxic compounds, is mediated by membrane-associated drug efflux pumps. The aim of this project is to investigate the role of efflux pumps in intrinsic and acquired drug resistance in mycobacteria. Different genes encoding efflux pumps that confer resistance to fluoroquinolones, streptomycin, tetracycline, and structurally and functionally unrelated compounds have been characterized in M. smegmatis and Mtb. Furthermore, the regulation of the LfrA efflux pump by the LfrR repressor was studied; the results suggest that the LfrR repressor is able to bind to different compounds, which allows induction of LfrA multidrug efflux pump expression in response to these ones.

FIELD OF EXPERIENCE: Prof. De Rossi has a recognized experience in the study of antibiotic resistance mechanisms (especially those based on efflux pumps), and in genetics and molecular biology of mycobacteria. She has experience in mycobacterial genome sequencing, DNA libraries construction and screening, mycobacterial gene inactivation, and general gene cloning. She is dealing with the target identification of new promising antitubercular drugs by microbiological, genetic and molecular approaches.

FUNDING: Prof. De Rossi has obtained grants from Research program FAR, Integrated Action Italy-Spain, V EC Framework Programme, Fondazione Cariplo, and MIUR-PRIN-2005 and 2008.

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