Our Staff - Cell Factory Policlinico Milano

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Our Staff

Our Staff
Lorenza Lazzari
R&D Director
Scientific researcher, coordinator and supervisor of all experimental works principal investigator in most national and international research programs related to basic and clinical research on stem cells. Her research laboratory is involved in studies on human hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells from different sources (cord blood, adipose tissue, amniotic fluid, tooth, muscle, etc..), particularly in terms of isolation, expansion, characterization and differentiation of these cells and their ability to repair damaged tissues.
Member of the Scientific Committee of Fondazione IRCCS Ca’ Ga Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico di Milano and President of Forum of Italian Researchers on Mesenchymal and Stromal Stem Cells – FIRST.
Rosaria Giordano
Qualified Person
Technical Director of the hospital based GMP facility Cell Factory, specialized in the production of cellular products for clinical use. The facility has been accredited for cellular therapy production by the Italian Agency for medicinal products evaluation (AIFA). The facility is involved in several sponatenous clinical experimental protocols for hematological, cardiologic and neurologic diseases. The facility can provide the following cell-based products: CD133+ and CD34+ cells from bone marrow and peripheral blood, ex-vivo expanded cord blood-derived hematopoietic progenitors, cord blood-derived and adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells.

Tiziana Montemurro
Role: Director of Production of the hospital based GMP Facility Cell Factory.
Activity: Senior Research associated in Cell Factory’s Group since January 2000, specialized in the production of cellular products for clinical use according to the requirements of Good Manufacturing Practice, such as clinical grade selection and expansion of Bone Marrow/ Cord Blood Mesenchymal Stem Cells, or clinical grade selection and ex vivo expansion of CD34+ and CD133+ Cord Blood Stem Cells.
Previously: M.SC. in Biology at University of Milan, Title of experimental thesis: “Ex vivo expansion of hematopoietic stem cells from cord blood”  (1999); Visiting scientist at the Research Unit of Prof. B. Peault -U506 Groupe Hospitalier Paul Brousse Villejuif, France (2002); Post academic graduate in Medical Genetics (2009).
Mariele Vigano
Role: since October 2011 Responsible for Quality Control in the GMP facility “Cell Factory F. Calori” 
Activity: Post-Doctoral Fellow in Cell Factory’s Group since 2008 working on GMP activities concerning quality control of cellular products for clinical use: set up and performing assays in accordance to standard operating procedures (SOP); writing SOP and work instructions, analyzing data and actively participating in new methods development and validation.
Since 2009 admitted to the five-year specialty school program in Clinical  Biochemistry.
Previously: PhD in Neuroscience in December 2007 at the Department of Neuroscience and Biomedical Technologies, University of Milan- Bicocca, Monza (Italy).
Research experience in Belgium during the third year of PhD program.
BSc in Biology at the University of Milan-Bicocca (Italy) in April 2005.
Elisa Montelatici
Role: working in Cell Factory’s Group since April 2004, principally involved in Good Manifacturing Practice cell processes. Since 2010 she his responsible for the storage and distribution of final products processed in our GMP facility. She is also in charge of the supervision of the external quality control laboratories for the cellular product release testing.
Activity: senior researcher involved in clinical grade production of Mesenchymal Stem Cells, isolation and expansion, from different sources (Bone Marrow and Cord Blood) and selection of Mobilized Peripheral Blood Stem Cells by immunomagnetic positive selection system.  Her special interest in GMP is developing efficient tools for the trend analysis of the manufacturing processes in order to continuously improve the quality of the cellular products.
Previously: graduate in Biotechnology since 2003, University of Milano, and post academic graduate in Clinical Biochemistry since 2010, specialty school at University of Pavia.
Cristiana Lavazza
Role: Post-Doctoral Research Associate
GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) Qualified Scientist 
Activity: In Cell Factory’s R&D Group since 2010, she investigates isolation, characterization and cryopreservation of mesenchymal stem cells from different sources. 
At Cell Factory’s GMP Facility since 2010, she exerts in both Production and Quality Control of cellular therapeutic products from aphaeresis, bone marrow and cord blood. 
She is attending a 2nd level post graduate School in Clinical Biochemistry. 
Previously: Post-Doctoral Research Associate at the National Cancer Institute (Istituto Nazionale Tumori) in Milano, Italy, working on translational cellular and gene therapy approaches [2005-2009]. 
Ph.D. in Biotechnology Applied to Medical Sciences at Università degli Studi, Milano, Italy, with a doctoral thesis ”Use of genetically-engineered TRAIL-expressing stem cells as a treatment for disseminated lymphomas” (“Uso di cellule staminali geneticamente modificate ad esprimere TNF-Related Apoptosis Inducing Ligand (TRAIL) per il trattamento di linfomi disseminati”) [2002-2005]. 
M.Sc. with honors in Medical Biotechnology at Università degli Studi, Milano, Italy, with the thesis “Use of chimeric adeno-retriviral vectors for in vitro transduction of hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic cells” (“Uso di vettori chimerici adeno-retrovirali per la trasduzione in vitro di cellule emopoietiche e non-emopoietiche”) [1997-2002]. 
Mario Barilani
Role: Junior researcher.
Activity: Research Fellow in Cell Factory's Group since October 2011 investigating umbilical cord blood-derived mesenchymal stem cells (CBMSC). The research project includes: isolation, long-term culture maintenance, differentiation, interaction with biomaterials, and reprogramming to pluripotency, of CBMSC.
Previously: M.Sc. in Genetics and Molecular Biology, University of Rome "La Sapienza" [2008-2010]; B.Sc. in Biotechnology, University of Milano-Bicocca [2005-2008].
Silvia Budelli
Role: GMP qualified operator.
Activities: Junior researcher in Cell Factory’s group since December 2011, principally involved in document management and clinical grade cell processes (isolation and expansion of mesenchymal stem cells from different sources, CD133+ and CD34+ enrichment from mobilized peripheral blood or bone marrow using immunomagnetic selection system).
Previously: M.Sc. in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology at University of Milan, with the thesis “Critical aspects of microbial contamination of skin tissue for transplantation purposes: experience of the Lombardy Region Tissue Bank”. B.Sc. in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology at University of Milan, after a one-year internship at the Laboratory of Pharmacology of Thrombosis and Atherosclerosis of the Department of Pharmacological Sciences, University of Milan and the thesis “Terutroban, a thromboxane/prostaglandin endoperoxide receptor antagonist, prevents hypertensive vascular hypertrophy and fibrosis in spontaneously hypertensive rats stroke-prone (SHR-SP)”. 
Alessandro Cherubini

Role: Post-Doctoral Researcher
Activity: Research fellow in Cell Factory’s Group since May 2016 focusing on molecular mechanism involved in Mesenchymal Stem Cells communication.
Previously: Ph.D in Translational and Molecular Medicine at the University of Milan, investigated the central role of c-Myc in establishing an epigenetic memory in Embryonic Stem Cells, by sustaining the self-reinforcing Transcriptional Regulatory Network (TRN) via the potentiation of the Wnt/β-Catenin pathway [2012-2015].
M.Sc. with honors in Molecular Biology, University of Siena, with the thesis “Analysis of interaction between Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 (PRC2) and the transcription factor MYC” [2008-2011].
Marta Dossena
Role: Post-Doctoral Reasearch
Activity: Research fellow in Cell Factory’s Group since November 2016 focusing on developing GMP-compliant human pancreas organoids for the cell-based therapy of Type 1 Diabetes.
Previously: Graduated in 2004 in Biological Science (University of Milan, Italy). PhD in Pharmacology, chemotherapy and medical toxicology investigated the leptin neurotrophic and neuroprotective properties in experimental models of cerebral ischemia [2005-2009]. Since 2010 she has worked in an Italian GMP-cell factory first as a production operator and later as production director. In 2012 she leaves the position of production director to get back in the field of preclinical research to study human adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells as therapy for cerebral ischemia. 
Sara Savelli
Role: GMP Qualified Biologist
Activity: Currently involved in the production process and the quality control of clinical grade cellular products. Also investigating the feasibility of the automation of GMP production of mesenchymal stem cells. Involved, since november 2016, in the under validation protocol dealing with positive selection, expansion and transplantation of regulatory T-cells to prevent cellular rejection and to induce tolerance in solid organ transplantation.
Previously: (May 2016- October 2016) Research Collaborator at the University of Pisa. Involved in the preclinical studies aimed at the clinical application of bioreactor expanded mesenchymal stem cells from bone marrow for the treatment of limb non-unions.
 (July 2015) Post-graduate degree in Clinical Biochemistry at the University of Pisa. Discussing a Thesis titled “New strategies for clinical-scale ex vivo expansion of human mesenchymal stromal cells: the use of the Quantum Cell Expansion System”
(October 2012- March 2016) Fellowship at the Cell and Tissue Bank of Pisa University Hospital. Dealing with manipulation, cryopreservation and distribution of haematopoietic cord blood stem cells and heart valves. Working at the Immunogenetics Laboratory, dealing with low and high resolution HLA-typing; donor-recipient histocompatibility testing (crossmatch test) for solid organ transplantation and the Luminex technology to assess the specificities of antibodies directed against MHC I-II antigens in intendent recipients
(February 2010) Master degree in Biomolecular Science and Technology at the University of Pisa
Marta Pera Muñoz
Role: Post-doctoral research scientist
Activity: Research fellow in Cell Factory since May 2017. My main goal is to unravel the mechanism by which bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells transfer mitochondria to leukemic cells under chemotherapy in acute myeloid leukemia.
Previously: Ph.D in Neuroscience by the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in 2010. My Ph.D research was focused in the development of new drugs to treat Alzheimer’s disease. My pre-doctoral training was completed at the Neurology Department at the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau (Barcelona), were I was studying the molecular basis of Alzheimer disease (AD), specifically the different patterns of expression of APP-C99 in sporadic and familial AD. During my post-doctoral period at Columbia University (New York) the aim of my research was to define the role of mitochondria-associated endoplasmic reticulum membranes (MAM) on AD. We described that a critical component of AD pathogenesis is mediated by APP-C99 toxicity through its effects on MAM and mitochondria.
Giuseppe Buono
Università degli Studi Milano-Bicocca
Maria Luisa Persivate
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