MEET THE DIBIO SCIENTIST SERIES MARGHERITA FESTA
Scadenza: 02.11.2022 14:35
Pubblicato il: 09.04.2022 13:00
Margherita is a post-doctoral fellow at DiBio
Can you summarize in few words your research?
My research focuses on the study of ion channels and their functions in health and disease: from their molecular identity and biophysical properties to the processes thorough which they are regulated.
What is the most rewarding and the most challenging part of your work?
I am really fascinated by linking the phenotype with the genotype. To this aim, I design strategies based on the latest available genome editing technologies to isolate mutants for the genes I am interested in. It seems easy, but it is very challenging.
Tell us your story: what brings you to DiBio?
I obtained my Ph.D. in Biomolecular Science at the University of Milan working in collaboration with Prof.Castagliuolo on the production, in plant, of an edible vaccine. I spent one year in Bologna studying plant electron transporters and the redox regulation of one Arabidopsis GAPDH isoform. I moved to Genova, at the Institute of Biophysics, where I studied mammalian lysosomal channels by means of an innovative approach based on Arabidopsis protoplasts and patch-clamp technique applied to Arabidopsis vacuole. I went back to the University of Milan, where I worked on the development and characterization of a channel activated by the application of magnetic fields and on engineered a blue-light activated potassium channel in zebrafish, in collaboration with Filippo Del Bene (Paris). Finally, I joined the DiBio team thanks to a colleague who informed me about an open position in Szabo's lab and... Here I am!
What would you tell your younger self?
Be curious and always willing to learn, there is still a whole world to discover around you!
What’s your favourite “toy” for research – and what can it do?
DNA, of course! My basic and not so simple toy. It can literally do everything. I also like microscopy, which nowadays allows to see each small "object" in big detail, even at single-molecule level.
What are your interests outside science?
Hiking/trekking: when I reached "Capanna Margherita" some years ago, it was a great achievement! I also like photography, travelling, and reading, often having a soundtrack made of folk, rock, and also classic music.