Foto del docente

Giovanna Farruggia

Assistant professor

Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnology

Academic discipline: BIO/10 Biochemistry

Curriculum vitae


"Maturita' Classica" Liceo Classico "G. D. Romagnosi", 1976, Parma, Italy.

Master degree (Laurea) in Biological Science,1980, University of Parma, Italy, cum laude.

"Diploma" in the School of Specialization on Biochemistry and Clinical Chemistry, 1984, University of Parma, Italy, cum laude.

PhD in Molecular Biology and Pathology, 1990, University of Parma, Italy.


1983 Post-graduate fellowship from "Accademia dei Lincei", Roma, on the biochemical and biophysical characterization of active peptides extracted from amphybian skin (supervisors Prof. Pietro Melchiorri e Prof. Vittorio Erspamer, Institute of Medical Pharmacology of "La Sapienza" University of Roma).

1988 Visiting Scientist, Division of Biological Sciences, National Research Council, Ottawa, Canada, to study flow cytometric techniques applied to cell biology.

Academical Position

From 1990 Assistant Professor, Department of Biochemistry "G. Moruzzi", University of Bologna

Membership of Scientific Societies

Societa’ Italiana di Biochimica.

International Society for the Development of Research on Magnesium (SDRM)

Research activity:


Institute of Ecology, University of Parma: research on phytodepuration of partially treated zootechnical waste-water.


Institute of Biochemistry, University of Parma: spectroscopic techniques applied to biomolecules and biosystems, in particular on membrane structure and functions:

i) Study on the molecular dynamic and structural characterization of plasma and acrosomial membranes of mammal spermatozoa and on the correlation between their susceptibility to lipid peroxidation and cryoconservation.

ii) Study of the secondary and tertiary structure of active amphibian skin peptides, mainly of the bombesin-like peptides family and of their synthetic derivatives, and the conformational modifications induced by their interaction with natural and artificial membranes. In particular, the study was aimed to understand how the phospholipid moieties, modulating the protein conformation, influence hormone-receptor recognition and binding. This research was performed under the supervision of Prof. Vittorio Erspamer, at the Institute of Pharmacology of the University "La Sapienza" of Rome.

From 1990

Department of Biochemistry "G.Moruzzi", University of Bologna

i) Research on the antiproliferative effects of products of the lipo peroxidative metabolism, mainly hydroxy-stearic acids, and of new potential anticancer drugs derived from indoles and guanilhydrazones. In this field she participated to the photophysical characterization of fluorescein conjugates of 9- and 10-hydroxystearic acid and to the evaluation of their cytofluorimetric and confocal microscopy applications.

ii) From 2003 the research mainly concernes the analytical methods for intracellular magnesium evaluation, in normal and transformed cell lines and in lymphocytes from normal subjects and from patients with digestive apparatus diseases. The study is focused on spectroscopic characterization and biological applications of new fluorescent dyes for cellular ion fluxes, in particular on magnesium and zinc biosensors.

From 2013

Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnology

i) Study of cellular magnesium homeostasis and of the role played by this cation in several aspect of cellular biology, mainly in cell cycle progression of normal and transformed cells, apoptosis and Multi-Drug Resistance. Recently her interest has turned to the study of its involvement in bone cell differentiation and in early events of bone matrix formation.

ii) Evaluation of the antiproliferative and MDR revertant effects of potential anticancer drugs, in collaboration with the colleagues of the Pharmaceutical Chemistry. Furthermore, her interest has been focused on nanomicelles to convey anticancer drugs, in particular on the formulation of nanomicelles suitable for the transport and release of Fenretinide, a synthetic analogue of Vitamin A, in tumor cell lines and in animal tumor models of neuroblastoma. These studies were mainly conducted using flow cytometry, quantum phase imaging and fluorescence microscopy.

Bibliometric indicator (February 2022):

Scopus: Orcid: 0000-0003-3599-7034. 89 publications, 1835 total citations h-index:23 10-year h-index:15

Web of Science: 94 publications, 1.788 total citations h-index:22

Google Scholar
Citation 2202, h-index:27, i10-index:55