top of page

Our people are at the core of what makes the Mitochondrial Cell Biology and Pharmacology Research Laboratory (Head Michelangelo Campanella) such a unique and fulfilling place to work. We are proud of the diversity of our staff, with all team members contributing their unique skills to the projects we are working on. Together, we have planned and executed some of the most innovative and cutting edge experiments. Find out more about our team members below.

website Danilo new.tif

Danilo Faccenda

Postdoctoral Research Associate

Danilo first joined the group in 2010 to undertake the M.Sc. project as part of his Master in Molecular Biotechnology at the University of Bologna. After receiving his master’s degree, he then stayed with the group to complete his PhD in Cell Biology investigating the role of the ATPase inhibitory factor 1 (IF1) in the regulation of mitochondrial bioenergetics and apoptosis in cancer. He then spent two years in Milan to work at the European Institute of Oncology. Currently, Danilo is studying the molecular mechanisms linking alterations in mitochondria-to-nucleus communication to aging and neurodegeneration.


Richard Boulton-Mcdonald

Graduate Student

Richard joined the lab in 2019 as a BBSRC iCASE student. His studentship is focused on the effect of mitochondrial heterogeniety in aging.

Manuel Rigon.jpg

Manuel Rigon

Research Assistant

Manuel joined the lab in 2018 as a Rotary Fellow to study the role of contact sites between nucleus and mitochondria in breast cancer treatment resistance.
He is now investigating the mechanisms driving stemness in mesothelioma 
tumours to improve treatments.


Daniela Strobbe

Postdoctoral Research Associate

Daniela  is investigating the role of the mitochondrial translocator protein (TSPO) in brain and breast cancer cells, focusing on the molecular mechanisms that increase tumour aggressiveness and resistance to therapy.


Brindha Kannan

Graduate Student

Brindha joined the unit in 2021 after completing a BSc in Biotechnology from Monash University. Her research focuses on the comparative cell biology of mito-nuclear interactions in breast cancer.


Sharmitha Rajendrakumar

Management Assistant

Sharmitha joined the IGR unit in France in may 2023 after completing a Master degree in Biomics from the University Paris-Est Créteil. She is supporting the unit  by covering the role of clerical and technical assistant.

IMG_8881-Tong Guo_edited.jpg

Tong Guo

PhD in Neuroscience

Tong joined the team in June 2023 in order to realise the objectives and development of the research programme entitled : “Form and Function of the Mitochondrial Retrograde Response”. The project’s goal is to detail the molecular nature and signalling of the points of contact between mitochondria and nucleus in order to characterise the mechanisms which govern the mitochondrial retrograde communication with the nucleus.
The successful candidate will therefore engage with advanced methods of cell biology research to answer fundamental questions on the complexity of mitonuclear interaction.


Eva Sidlauskaite

Postdoctoral Research Assistant

Eva joined as Postdoctoral Researcher in 2022 to characterize the molecular events which determine the physical coupling between mitochondria and nucleus.
Prior to this project, Eva completed three years of postdoctoral training in gene therapy at UCL. Eva’s work as PhD student ( Abertay University) focused on biological phenomena implicated in neuromuscular ageing such as mitochondrial redox signalling.


Sarah Hassan

Research Engineer

Sarah joined the IGR unit in France as a research engineer in November 2023 after PhD in pharmacology from the University of Strasbourg.
Over the past few years, Sarah’s work focused on the development of novel in vitro model generated in 3D culture and Organ-on-chip technology in the aim to reach in vivo tissue complexity.


Yassine Khalij

Postdoctoral Research Assistant

Yassine joined the IGR unit in France as a Postdoctoral Research Assistant in February 2024. During his post-graduate years, he focused on pharmacogenetics in cancer. He conducted in vitro experiments on cell lines to search for novel biomarkers that could help combat therapy resistance.

Additionally, he performed in vivo analysis of patient samples, including DNA, RNA, and tissue. This dual approach allowed him to decipher the role of DPYD and TYMS variants in chemotherapy-induced toxicity. His research on personalized medicine is paving the way for safer and more effective cancer treatments tailored to individual patients' genetic spectrum.


Ludovica Armellini

Research fellow

Ludovica joined the lab in April 2024 after completing a master's degree in Industrial Biotechnology. She is investigating the structure and function of contact sites between the nucleus and mitochondria in breast cancer therapies.


Diana Cadena-Castaneda

Postdoctoral Research


Diana joined the IGR unit in France as a Postdoctoral Research Assistant in May 2024. With over 5 years of experience as an Immuno-Oncologist, she specializes in in vitro, ex-vivo, and organoid models, focusing on immune responses in viral infection and cancer. She utilizes methods such as flow cytometry, confocal microscopy, ELISA tests, and data interpretation from transcriptional data. Committed to excellence in laboratory projects, Diana is eager to learn new techniques, prioritize lab goals, and foster a positive team dynamic.

bottom of page