PhD Student

PhD program:: XXXIX
phone: 0649913016
building: Viliino Tronconi, Viale di Porta Tiburtina 28 - Dipartimento di Medicina Molecolare

supervisor: Alessandra Carattoli
advisor: Alessandra Carattoli

Research: Basic and applicative aspects of genomic analysis applied to antimicrobial resistant bacteria and their interactions with the host's microbiota

• Thematic area: Microbiology
• SSD: BIO-19
• Education:
01/2022 – 10/2023 Master’s degree: Biochemistry. 110/110 with honours
Sapienza University of Rome
Thesis: Evolution of Klebsiella pneumoniae Sequence Type 512 expressing metallo-β-lactamase and serine carbapenemases to resistance towards last generation antibiotics

11/2016 – 01/2022 Bachelor’s degree: Biotecnologie Agro-Industriali. 102/110
Sapienza University of Rome
Thesis: Studio dell’effetto dell’espressione della neuroserpina umana sulla crescita cellulare e sulla resistenza allo stress ossidativo nel lievito Saccharomyces cerevisiae

• Fellowships and past working experiences:
03/2023 - 07/2023 Collaboration Scholarship
Department of Biochemical Science “A. Rossi Fanelli” of the Sapienza University of Rome

09/2022 – 12/2022 Tutoring assignment in the Laboratory of Plant Physiology, for the bachelor’s degree in Biology
Faculty of Mathematical, Physical and Natural Sciences of the Sapienza University of Rome

02/2019 – 01/2020 Collaboration Scholarship
Department of Biology and Biotechnology Charles Darwin of the Sapienza University of Rome

• Brief description of the project:
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a worldwide public health priority. The concern related to this topic is mainly due to the velocity and mechanisms by which microorganism can adapt even to last-generation antibiotics. Indeed, development of resistance is soon recorded after their introduction in clinical practice.
A significant contribute to the spread of resistance is given by horizontal gene transfer: plasmid transfer allows genetic material to move within and between species, leading to the spread of AMR.
Lastly, antibiotic administration correlates to imbalances in gut microbiota (dysbiosis) increasing the susceptibility to develop infections.
The objectives of this project are to:
1. analyse AMR clones at high epidemic risk circulating in Italian hospitals and compare them with those with global spread thanks to international networks (SEDRIC group: The Surveillance and Epidemiology of Drug-Resistant Infections Consortium);
2. study mechanisms of resistance to new antibiotics with an interdisciplinary molecular and microbiological approach;
3. improve methodologies for the identification of resistant strains with biological and clinical intersectoral interest;
4. characterize the alterations of the microbiota following antibiotic treatment to investigate the correlation between factors inducing dysbiosis and infections defined by or associated with them.
Applied technologies include whole genome sequencing using Illumina and Oxford Nanopore technologies, digital PCR, beta-lactamase biochemistry and tools for protein structure prediction. The identified resistance mechanisms will be further studied in isogenic bacterial models.
The expected results include the development of molecular tests to improve the diagnosis and tracking of epidemics and the detection of genes linked to antimicrobial resistance; an expansion of knowledge of the mechanism of action and adaptation of bacteria to the selective pressure exerted by the use of antibiotics and the evaluation of its impact on the microbiome.

Research products

11573/1692689 - 2023 - Genotypic evolution of Klebsiella pneumoniae sequence type 512 during ceftazidime/avibactam, meropenem/vaborbactam, and cefiderocol treatment, Italy
Arcari, Gabriele; Cecilia, Federico; Oliva, Alessandra; Polani, Riccardo; Raponi, Giammarco; Sacco, Federica; De Francesco, Alice; Pugliese, Francesco; Carattoli, Alessandra - 01a Articolo in rivista
paper: EMERGING INFECTIOUS DISEASES () pp. 2266-2274 - issn: 1080-6059 - wos: WOS:001127982900003 (0) - scopus: 2-s2.0-85175270969 (0)

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