Luca Scorrano
Luca Scorrano
affiliation: University of Padova, Dept. of Biology
research area(s): Cell Biology, Neuroscience
Course: Biosciences and Biotechnologies
University/Istitution: Università di Padova
2001 Ph.D. Dept. of Biomedical Sciences, University of Padua, Italy (Molecular and Cellular Biology and Pathology)
1997 Licensure # 8271, Italian Physician Association (General Medicine)
1996 M.D. summa cum laude, University of Padua Medical School, Italy
Research and Professional Experience
2000-2003 Postdoctoral Research Fellow (Apoptosis, Dr. S.J. Korsmeyer) Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, USA
1996-2000 Research Fellow (Mitochondrial Pathophysiology, Dr. P. Bernardi) Dept. of Biomedical Sciences, University of Padua, Italy
1998 Medical Lieutenant, Head of Sanitary Service (Medicine, compulsory military service), Padua Military Heliport, Italy
1996-1997 Internship (Medicine) University Hospital, Padua, Italy
Academic appointments
2013-present “Chiara Fama” Professor and Chair of Biochemistry, Department of Biology, University of Padova
2007-2013 Full Professor, Department of Cell Physiology and Metabolism, University of Geneva Medical School, Geneva, Switzerland
2007-present Senior Telethon Scientist, Dulbecco-Telethon Institute
2004-2007 Faculty, Ph.D. School of Biosciences, University of Padua, Italy
Group Leader Venetian Institute of Molecular Medicine, Padua, Italy
2003-2007 Assistant Telethon Scientist, Dulbecco-Telethon Institute
2000-2003 Long Term Fellowship, HFSP
2000 Special Fellowship, Leukemia-Lymphoma Society of America (declined)
Long Term Fellowship, EMBO (declined)
1999 “Fontana-Lionello” Fellowship, Italian Cancer Research Foundation
1996-1999 Research Doctorate Fellowship, Italian Ministry of University, Scientific and Technological Research (MURST)
2013 2013 ESCI Award for Excellence in Basic/Translational Research, European Society for Clinical Investigation
2012 Elected EMBO Member
Chair, Keystone Symposium “Mitochondrial Dynamics and Physiology” Banff (Canada)
2011 “Chiara D’Onofrio” Prize, The D’Onofrio Foundation
ERC Starting grant (Consolidator)
2006 Eppendorf European Young Investigator Award, Eppendorf-Nature
EMBO Young Investigator
2005 “Angelo Minich” Prize for Medicine, Venetian Institute of Science, Letter and Arts
Rotary Prize for Science, Rotary Padova (Italy)
2004 Career Development Award, HFSP
2003 “AICC-Onlus” Prize, Italian Association of Cell Culture (AICC)
2001 “G. Capozza” Prize, Italian Group of Bioenergetics and Biomembranes (GIBB)

Invited Lectures and Seminars
Invited to give more than 140 Lectures and seminars at international meetings (EMBO, FEBS, Keystone, Gordon Research Conferences, EBEC, etc.) and Academic Institutions, including 16 Keynote, Featured or Named lectures. Served as chairperson of scientific sessions in 25 occasions.
Current funding
2012-2017 European Research Council (PI, 1,500,000 €) Molecular Anatomy and Pathophysiology of the ER-mitochondria interface
2012-2015 Telethon Italy (PI, 371,500 €) Extending the Optic Atrophy 1 dependent cristae remodeling: from models to therapeutic approaches
2011-2015 FIRB, Italian Ministry of Research (Unit PI, 631,165 €) Automed: molecular mechanisms of autophagy in cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.
2011-2014 AIRC Italy (PI, 345,000 €) Targeting Optic Atrophy 1 to Enhance Cancer Cell Death
2011-2014 Telethon Italy (Program Project, Unit PI, 364,500 €) Therapeutic strategies to combat mitochondrial disorders
2011-2013 AFM (PI, 44,000€). The role of ER-mitochondria tethering in the pathogenesis of Charcot-Marie-Tooth IIa
2012-2014 FP7 People Action, IEF MitoParkin (Coordinator, 158,000€)
2012-2014 FP7 People Action, Cop1-Drp1 (Coordinator, 220,000€)
2010-2013 Swiss National Fund (PI 600,000 CHF) Bonus of Excellence, Extending mitochondrial dynamics in cell life and death: from molecular mechanisms to animal models
2010-2013 Swiss National Fund Sinergia (Coordinator, 1,450,000 CHF) Nanoscale approaches to dissect mitochondrial dynamics in cell life and death
Report of training
Postdoctoral fellows: 15. Of them, 7 current; 4 obtained a position as Junior Group Leader, 4 moved to teaching, or industry. Graduate students: 14. Of them, 9 current; 4 continued in other labs as postdoctoral fellows or progressed as Group Leaders, all supported by EMBO, FEBS, Marie Curie grants; one moved to industry. Undergraduate 11. Of them, 60% enrolled in a PhD program.
The laboratory of Dr. Luca Scorrano investigates the role of mitochondrial shape in cell life and death. Based on previous work from this lab that contributed to change classical tenets in the field of apoptosis and mitochondrial pathophysiology, several projects are available on main avenues for the lab for talented and motivated PhD students who will be selected after a rigorous interview process: the molecular characterization of the process of Opa1-dependent cristae remodeling; the genome wide screening for molecular tethers between mitochondria and the endoplasmic reticulum; the role of Opa1 in cancer cell survival; the role of Mitofusin 2 in mitophagy and in Parkinson’s disease. These projects will be addressed by combining genetics, advanced imaging, cell physiology and electron tomography.
Recent Selected Research Papers
1. S. Cipolat*, T. Rudka*, D. Hartmann*, V. Costa, L. Serneels, K. Craessaerts, K. Metzger, C. Frezza, W. Annaert, L. D’Adamio, C. Derks, T. Dejaegere, L. Pellegrini, R. D’Hooge, and L. Scorrano‡, B. De Strooper‡. ‡corresponding authors. Mitochondrial rhomboid PARL regulates cytochrome c release during apoptosis via OPA1 dependent cristae remodeling. Cell 126:163-75 (2006)
• Comment in: E. Gottlieb. OPA1 and PARL Keep a Lid on Apoptosis. Cell 126:27-9 (2006).
• Comment in: P. Delivani and S.J. Martin Mitochondrial membrane remodeling in apoptosis: an inside story Cell Death and Differentiation 13: 2007-10 (2006).
• Comment in: In brief, Nature Reviews Molecular and Cellular Biology 7:625
• Recommended Faculty of1000 Biology, B. Conradt
2. C. Frezza, S. Cipolat, O. Martins de Brito, M. Micaroni, G.V. Beznoussenko, T. Rudka, D. Bartoli, R.S. Polishuck, N.N. Danial, B. De Strooper and L. Scorrano. OPA1 Controls Mitochondrial Cristae Remodelling Independently from Mitochondrial Fusion During Apoptosis. Cell 126:176-89 (2006)
• Comment in: E. Gottlieb. OPA1 and PARL Keep a Lid on Apoptosis. Cell 126:27-9 (2006).
• Comment in: P. Delivani and S.J. Martin Mitochondrial membrane remodeling in apoptosis: an inside story Cell Death and Differentiation 13: 2007-10 (2006).
• Must Read, Faculty of1000 Biology, B. Conradt and D. Xue
3. E. Alirol, D. James, D. Huber, A. Marchetto, L. Vergani, J-C Martinou‡, and L. Scorrano‡. ‡corresponding authors. The mitochondrial fission protein hFis1 requires the endoplasmic reticulum gateway to induce apoptosis. Mol. Biol. Cell 17:4593-605 (2006)
• Recommended Faculty of1000 Biology, D. Andrews
4. C. Frezza, S. Cipolat and L. Scorrano. Organelle Isolation: functional mitochondria from mouse liver, muscle and cultured fibroblasts. Nature Prot. 2:287-95 (2007)
5. K.S. Dimmer, F. Navoni, A. Casarin, E. Trevisson, S. Endele, A. Winterpacht, L. Salviati, and L. Scorrano. LETM1, deleted in Wolf-Hirschhorn Syndrome is required for normal mitochondrial morphology and cellular viability. Hum Mol Genet. 17:201-214 (2008)
6. G.M. Cereghetti, A. Stangherlin, O. Martins de Brito, C.R. Chang, C. Blackstone, P. Bernardi and L. Scorrano Dephosphorylation by calcineurin regulates translocation of Drp1 to mitochondria. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 105:15803-15808 (2008).
7. O. Martins de Brito and L. Scorrano Mitofusin 2 tethers mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum. Nature 456:605-10 (2008).
• Comment in: K. Merkwirth and T. Langer. Mitofusin 2 builds a bridge between ER and mitochondria. Cell 135:1165-7 (2008).
• Comment in: A. Parekh. Calcium signalling: mitofusins promote interorganellar crosstalk. Curr Biol. 19:R200-3. (2009)
• Comment in: In brief, Nature Reviews Molecular and Cellular Biology 10:5
• Exceptional, Faculty of1000 Biology, Y. Yamashita/H. Osiewacz/D. Green
• Must Read, Faculty of1000 Medicine, N. Bresolin
8. G. Cereghetti, V. Costa and L. Scorrano Inhibition of Drp1-dependent mitochondrial fragmentation and apoptosis by a polypeptide antagonist of calcineurin Cell Death Differ. 17:1785-94 (2010)
9. C. Cerqua, V. Anesti, A. Pyakurel, D. Liu, D. Naon, R. Baffa, G. Wiche, K.S. Dimmer and L. Scorrano Trichoplein/Mitostatin regulates ER-mitochondria juxtaposition EMBO Rep. 11:854-60 (2010)
10. V. Costa, M Giacomello, R. Hudec, R. Lopreiato, G. Ermak, D. Lim, W. Malorni, K.J.A. Davies, E. Carafoli, and L. Scorrano Mitochondrial fission and cristae disruption increase the response of cell models of Huntington’s disease to apoptotic stimuli EMBO Mol. Med. 2:490-503. (2010)
• Comment in: J.M.A. Oliveira and R.N. Lightowlers Could successful (mitochondrial) networking help prevent Huntington’s disease? EMBO Mol Med 2:487-9. (2010)
• FFa 8 Faculty of1000 Medicine, S. Di Donato
11. L. Gomes, G. Di Benedetto and L. Scorrano During autophagy mitochondria elongate, are spared from degradation and sustain cell viability Nat. Cell. Biol. 13:589–598 (2011)
• Cover Article, Nat. Cell. Biol. 13 (5)
• Comment in: C. Blackstone and C.R. Chang Mitochondria unite to survive Nat. Cell. Biol. 13:521-2 (2011)
• Comment in: K. H. Wrighton Autophagy: Shaping the fate of mitochondria Nat. Rev. Mol. Cell Biol. 12:344-5 (2011)
• Comment in: L. Galluzzi, O. Kepp, and G. Kroemer Mitochondrial dynamics: a strategy for avoiding autophagy. Curr Biol. 21:R478-80 (2011).
• Editor’s Choice in: S.M. Hurtley Don't Eat Me Science 332: 514-5 (2011).
• FFa 10 Faculty of1000 Biology, H. Osziewacz
12. Wasilewski,M., Semenzato,M., Rafelski,S.M., Robbins,J., Bakardjiev,A.I., and L. Scorrano (2012). Optic atrophy 1-dependent mitochondrial remodeling controls steroidogenesis in trophoblasts. Curr. Biol. 22, 1228-1234.

No projects are available to students for the current accademic year.