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Personal profile

Research interests

My research focuses on understanding the evolutionary relationships at the root of the animal tree (i.e. Porifera, Ctenophora, Cnidaria, and Placozoa), including the evolution of the cell types and body plan of these taxa, in a molecular framework. These early-splitting lineages diverged over at least 650 million years ago, in the Cryogenian period, developing very different body plans, ecological strategies and morphologies. The relationships of the early metazoans and animal diversification patterns are a long debate topic in the scientific community. They are fundamental to reconstruct the evolution of key animal traits and their last common ancestor. I am interested also in understanding the processes of biomineralization in sponges to better understand the fossil record of this phylum.

Education/Academic qualification

Sapienza - Università di Roma

Award Date: 23 Mar 2018

Sapienza - Università di Roma

Award Date: 13 Oct 2015

External positions

Research Assistant , Natural History Museum, London

10 Apr 201815 Jul 2019


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