Anna Letizia Allegra Mascaro
I am a very motivated young PI fascinated by brain plasticity. My very broad background spanning from neuroscience to optics and chemistry makes my research very flexible and creative. My approach to system neuroscience is made through a combination of optical imaging and manipulation techniques with molecular studies and behavioral evaluation. I have longstanding expertise in experiments on cortical plasticity in mice where we routinely use wide-field microscopy and two-photon imaging to characterize structural and functional plasticity.
I obtained my Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry in 2005 and my Master’s Degree in Chemistry of Biological Molecules in 2007 at the University of Florence. Currently, I am a tenured researcher for the Neuroscience Institute of the National Research Council, affiliated with LENS.
I am currently involved in three projects, ranging from basic neuronal mechanisms to neurological and neurodevelopmental disorders.
In the first, we study neuronal rewiring after stroke, from synaptic plasticity to vascular permeability in the acute phase after stroke. We further apply rehabilitation protocols to study how they act on cortical rewiring and promote recovery of motor functions. Wide-field fluorescence microscopy combined with genetically encoded fluorescent reporters of neuronal activity allows visualization of cortical remapping over large areas during rehabilitative training.
On the second, we are involved within the Human Brain Project where we investigate large-scale cortical responsiveness to stimuli under different brain states.
Finally, in the third, we investigate the alterations in functional connectivity and sensory responsiveness in mouse models of neurodevelopmental disorders.
Dr. Allegra Mascaro is the author of many international papers and book chapters. She has been invited to give seminars at many international conferences.