I come from Catania (Italy) and I always wanted to give my contribution to the world of Drug Discovery. In order to do it I got the Single-cycle Master’s Degree in “Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Technologies” at the University of Bologna (Italy) on March 2014. My Master thesis was focused on the design, synthesis and characterization of new polycyclic derivatives as potential MDR reverting agents. After this experience I decided to attend a postgraduate master program in “Drug Design and Development” at the University of Pavia (Italy) getting the postgraduate Diploma in March 2016. Within this program I had a seven-months Erasmus Traineeship (Sep. 2015 – Mar 2016) at the University of Vienna (Austria). This internship was focused on the homologation chemistry approach in Medicinal Chemistry. After the Diploma I was awarded by the “PSF Master Research Fellowship” at the University of Pavia (Italy) where I spent four months (Apr. – Jul. 2016) working on the design, synthesis and scale up of new σ1 receptor’s ligands. Since August 2016 I am working at the Medicinal Chemistry Department of Taros Chemicals as PhD student in the loop of TASPPI project.
Project topic: Synthesis of small molecules and fragments that stabilize the 14-3-3 PPI within interactions with number of partner proteins (Tau, Gab2, NfkappaB, BAD, BAX, ASK1) that are known to be related to neurodegeneration, oncology, inflammation, metabolic diseases.
The PhD candidate will synthesize small molecules and fragments that stabilize the 14-3-3 PPI within interactions with number of partner proteins (Tau, Gab2, NfkappaB, BAD, BAX, ASK1) that are known to be related to neurodegeneration, oncology, inflammation, metabolic diseases. The candidate will obtain the PhD degree from Eindhoven University of Technology therefore she/he will be working under the supervision of the industrial and academic tutor. The candidate will be comfortable using synthetic chemistry techniques on a daily basis to attack fundamental problems in organic synthesis. The daily activities of the PhD candidate consist mainly in research, but it is also expected that the candidate participates in the many seminars by internal and external speakers as well as journal clubs and group activities. Collaboration with other PhD candidates, postdoctoral researchers and other members of the consortium will be encouraged. At the end of the PhD program the candidate will be an expert in design, synthesis and optimization of small-molecules/ fragments libraries with biological activity.
While these topics are fundamentally of an organic chemistry nature, the candidate has the possibility to develop collaborations with other members of the TASPPI consortium and to visit the biological laboratory in order to broaden the field of expertise.
To address this, our project will involve the following a. combinatorial synthesis and expansion of a library of diverse structural analogues of an existing compound demonstrating stabilization activity in PPI; b. iterative testing of the compound library will be undertaken within consortium with our biology partners to elucidate the biological activity and aid the design of more potent analogues.