Head of Laboratory

Giovanni D’Angelo graduated in 2003 with a MSc in Medical Biotechnology from the University of Naples, Italy and obtained his PhD in Cell Biology in 2008 from the Consorzio ‘Mario Negri’ SUD, Santa Maria Imbaro, Italy. For his postdoctoral training, he moved to the Telethon Institute for Genetics and Medicine in Naples, Italy to study sphingolipid metabolism and intracellular lipid trafficking. In 2012, Giovanni moved to the Institute of Protein Biochemistry, at the National Research Council of Italy in Naples as a principal investigator. In 2018 Giovanni moved to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), where he is now Assistant Professor and Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Chair on Metabolism.

My main interest is understanding the meaning of compositional variability in cell membranes by studying the mechanisms by which the lipid composition is determined.

AI 1109
+41 21 693 42 76
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Administrative Assistant

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Haute Ecole Spécialisée de Suisse Occidentale, Lausanne, 1998

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Laboratory Manager

Technical Assistant

Post-Doctoral Researchers

Antonino Asaro studied Biotechnology at the University of Palermo and Bologna. He trained as a neurobiologist at EMBL-Monterotondo with Paul Heppenstall and pursued his PhD in neuroscience at the Max Delbrück Center (MDC) in Berlin under Thomas Willnow. His interest in lipid biology led him to a postdoc at the University of Geneva with Howard Riezman. Since December 2022, he has been at EPFL in Giovanni D’Angelo’s lab.

Currently, I combine mass-spectrometry methods, stem cells, and chemical biology to uncover how lipids impact brain homeostasis at molecular level.

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Master in Biotechnology  2015
PhD in Life Science, Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology of Rosario, Argentina, 2020. “Characterisation of key enzymes involved in triacylglycerol biosynthesis in mycobacteria”
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Master in Biosciences, ENS Lyon
PhD in Biochemistry University of Geneva (Howard Riezman Group) 2014. “A kinome-wide RNAi screen to identify genes controlling membrane lipid homeostasis in human cells”
Postdoc fellow (EIPOD fellowship) Anne-Claude Gavin Lab at EMBL Heidelberg
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Leila Haj Abdullah Alieh studied molecular biology and neuroscience at the University of Trieste, Italy (IT). For her PhD, she joined the lab of Federico Calegari in Dresden, Germany, to elucidate transcriptional regulation mechanisms controlling neurodevelopment. She decided then to keep studying the brain and developmental processes from the perspective of lipid biology and joined the groups of Giovanni D’Angelo and Gioele La Manno in September 2021.

I am currently applying spatial lipidomic techniques to build metabolic atlases.

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In 2016, Pavel Barahtjan graduated with a BSc in Biology from the Technische Universität Dresden in Germany. He earned his MSc in Immunobiology from the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany, in 2018. Subsequently, in 2023, he obtained his PhD (Title “Plasma Membrane Lipid Asymmetry is Linked to Cellular Energetics“) at the Max-Planck-Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden. In 2023, Pavel transitioned to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL), where he currently works as a postdoctoral researcher.

My main interest is understanding how plasma membrane lipid composition and organization govern biological functions.

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Anita Nasrallah graduated in 2013 with a MSc in Molecular Biology from the Lebanese American University (LAU), Lebanon, and obtained her PhD in Life Sciences – Cardiovascular and Metabolism in 2019 from the University of Lausanne (UNIL), Switzerland. For her first postdoctoral training, she moved to the University of Zurich (UZH) and University Hospital Zurich (USZ), Switzerland to study the role of bile acids in cardiovascular metabolism of patients and mice undergoing gastric bypass. In 2020, Anita moved to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL) for her second postdoctoral training, where she investigates the role of GOLPH3 (a well-known proto-oncogene) in lipid metabolism of mice.

Apart from her lab work, Anita was the vice-president of the EPFL Postdoc Association (EPDA) in 2021, and a committee member of the Association du Corps Intermediare de l’EPFL (ACIDE) in 2022. She is the coordinator of the Peer-2-peer Counselling team (P2PCT) since 2021, and most importantly she has become a mother to a baby girl in 2023!

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Phd Students

Nika Gorsek graduated in 2020 with a BSc in Biochemistry from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. For the Master Studies, she moved to Heidelberg, Germany. In 2022, she obtained MSc in Molecular Biosciences from Heidelberg University, with a major in Developmental and Stem cell Biology. The topic of the Master thesis was: Impact of planar cell polarity pathway on neighbouring muscle stem cell populations. In 2023, she moved to Lausanne, Switzerland to pursue her PhD.

My project focuses on the one hand on investigating the lipid heterogeneity of stem cells on single cell level and on the other on deciphering how the lipid metabolism is shaping the differentiation and development of an organism.

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Irmak Kaysudu received her bachelor’s in molecular biology and genetics at Istanbul Technical University in 2018. She graduated from her master’s degree at Bilkent University in 2023. Irmak worked on prostate cancer metabolism and identified that sphingolipid metabolism is deregulated upon PTEN loss during her master’s. After she was amazed by the world of lipids, she decided to pursue her career to further discover the wonders of sphingolipids. Irmak joined D’Angelo Lab to do her Ph.D. in deciphering the lipidome of several neuropathologies. She confesses that the actual reason for her being in Switzerland is to eat Swiss cheeses and spend time in the beautiful nature of the Alps.

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Jiayan Lin got trained from 2014 to 2019 in China where he earned his Bachelor medical degree. Between 2019 and 2022 he devoted significant effort to basic research as part of his master studies before he received the Master degree in medicine upon completion of his research. It was during this period when he also developed profound interest in investigating cell fate transition mechanism. He embarked on his Ph.D. at EPFL in 2023 with a primary focus on understanding the mechanism responsible for the dynamic changes in lipotype over time and the role of lipids in this process. He aims to accomplish this through the application of various techniques and methodologies.

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Jean Maillat is a Swiss student, who graduated in 2020 with a Bachelor of science (BSc) in Life Sciences Engineering from EPFL. In 2022, he received a Master of Science (MSc) also in Life Sciences Engineering from EPFL. Title of Master Thesis: Optimisation of CAR T-cell production in an innovative culture chamber design. In March 2023, he started his PhD in Giovanni D’angelo’s lab at EPFL.

I am interested in understanding the dynamics of lipotypes and lipid territories dynamics by analysing sphingolipids metabolic fluxes at the single cell level using MALDI-MSI.


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Hannah Schede is a joint PhD student in the Computational and Quantitative Biology program (EDCB) between the La Manno and D’Angelo Labs. She has a strong interest in the applications of statistical models and data analysis to the health sciences. After completing her Bachelor’s degree in McGill University, Canada in Biology and Mathematics and her M. Eng in Bioengineering at EPFL, during which she completed an internship in the La Manno Lab, she returned to the lab full time as a PhD student.

I have worked towards the development of Tomographer, a technique dedicated to the spatial molecular profiling of tissues, as well as the construction of a python package to process mass spectrometry imaging data, uMAIA . I have other interests including tennis, hiking, baking, and slappin’ da bass!

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Visiting Scientists

Aldona Mzyk obtained a M.Sc. degree in Biotechnology from the University of Silesia in Poland, then a Ph.D. in Materials Science from the Institute of Metallurgy and Materials Science, Polish Academy of Sciences. Then she was an assistant professor in the Institute of Metallurgy and Materials Science, Polish Academy of Sciences in Poland and postdoctoral researcher in prof. Romana Schirhagl’s group at the University Medical Center Groningen in the Netherlands. Currently she is Marie Curie fellow at the DTU in Denmark (group of prof. Kirstine Berg-Sorensen) and at the EPFL in Switzerland (group of prof. Giovanni D’Angelo).

I am focusing on applying nanodiamond quantum sensors to explore the fascinating world of redox cell biology and combine it with single cell lipidomics.


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Dr. Francesco Talotta, a Ph.D. holder in Advanced Biology, earned his Master’s Degree in Biological Science from the University of Naples “Federico II” in 2004. Following a fellowship in Montpellier, France, he completed his Ph.D. at the University of Naples in 2009. His research journey includes a postdoctoral position in Naples and a role as a Senior Scientist in Rome from 2018 to 2021. Currently, he serves as a Researcher at the Institute of Genetics and Biophysics, CNR, Naples, Italy, showcasing his dedication to advancing biological science.

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Project Student

Master student, University of Trieste, Italy

Visiting Scientist

Ilias Gkikas, 2024

Theodora Chalatsi, 2023

PhD Students

Jaipreet Loomba, 2021

Laura Capolupo, 2021 – Post-Doc

Project Students

Zahra Rezaei, Bachelor Student, 2023

Laetitia Willemin, Master Student, 2023