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Laura Pezzolesi

Senior assistant professor (fixed-term)

Department of Biological, Geological, and Environmental Sciences

Academic discipline: BIO/01 General Botany


Keywords: microalgae cultivation; algal metabolites; toxins; photobioreactors; bioactive compounds; allelopathy; bioremediation; coralline algae

My research activity mostly concerns the biology and ecology of algae. Studies are aimed to:

i) identify the algal species involved in toxic effects towards human health and ecosystem, focusing mostly on the environmental conditions which promote the growth and the toxin production;

ii) investigate the toxic effects towards several organisms through eco-toxicological assays, and understand the toxic mechanism of algal toxins;

iii) characterize the dynamics of growth and production of the main cellular compounds and toxins, at different growth conditions;

iv) study interactions among microalgae and the production of allelopathic compounds or infochemicals;

v) study the algal toxin biosynthesis, in particular palytoxins/ovatoxins biosynthesis, through the gene expression evaluation of the polyketide synthases (PKS);

vi) characterize microalgal strains for bioremediation and industrial application through growth study in photobioreactors or open ponds;

vii) analyse the distribution and biology of populations of marine coralline algae, in particular Lithophyllum spp., in the Mediterranean Sea, through morphological observations and molecular investigations

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