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Francesca Rossi

College positions:
Affiliated Postdoctoral Researcher
immunology, Molecular Biology
Babraham Institute, Immunology Programme

Dr Francesca Rossi

Dr Rossi received her PhD in Genetics and Molecular Biology from Sapienza University of Rome (Italy). In her doctoral work, she studied the molecular functions of circular RNAs in rhabdomyosarcoma tumour, particularly focussing on the role of the interaction between the circular RNA circZNF609 and the messenger RNA CKAP5 in regulating microtubule dynamics and cell-cycle progression in cancer cells.

After her PhD, in 2021 she joined the Dept of Surgery of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas (United States) as a Post-Doc. Here she engaged in projects studying the spatio-temporal organisation of cell subpopulations in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma and the role of tumour microenvironment in gastro-intestinal cancers.

In March 2023 she joined Dr Martin Turner’s lab at the Babraham Institute in Cambridge as a Post-Doc, supported by an EU-funded Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship. Her project aims to elucidate how the ZFP36-family RNA-binding proteins limit effector functions of cytotoxic T-lymphocytes by acting as a regulatory hub for post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression, metabolism and epigenetics.

At the Babraham Institute, Dr Rossi recently joined the Equity4Success team, which promotes a positive working culture based on the equality, diversity and inclusion principles, and the Post-Doc committee, which supports Institute’s Post-Docs through the organisation of discussion forums, seminars and social events.

In her free time, she enjoys music, art exhibitions, porcelain painting, plants, hiking, climbing and boardgames.

Select publications

(*These authors contributed equally)

  • Gasper, W., Rossi, F., Ligorio, M., & Ghersi, D. (2022). Variant calling enhances the identification of cancer cells in single-cell RNA sequencing data. PLoS computational biology, 18(10), e1010576.
  • Rossi, F.*, Beltran, M.*, Damizia, M., Grelloni, C., Colantoni, A., Setti, A., Di Timoteo, G., Dattilo, D., Centrón-Broco, A., Nicoletti, C., Fanciulli, M., Lavia, P., & Bozzoni, I. (2022). Circular RNA ZNF609/CKAP5 mRNA interaction regulates microtubule dynamics and tumorigenicity. Molecular cell, 82(1), 75–89.e9.
  • Di Timoteo, G.*, Rossi, F.*, & Bozzoni, I. (2020). Circular RNAs in cell differentiation and development. Development (Cambridge, England), 147(16), dev182725.
  • Di Timoteo, G.*, Dattilo, D.*, Centrón-Broco, A., Colantoni, A., Guarnacci, M., Rossi, F., Incarnato, D., Oliviero, S., Fatica, A., Morlando, M., & Bozzoni, I. (2020). Modulation of circRNA Metabolism by m6A Modification. Cell reports, 31(6), 107641.
  • Rossi, F., Legnini, I., Megiorni, F., Colantoni, A., Santini, T., Morlando, M., Di Timoteo, G., Dattilo, D., Dominici, C., & Bozzoni, I. (2019). Circ-ZNF609 regulates G1-S progression in rhabdomyosarcoma. Oncogene, 38(20), 3843–3854.
  • Legnini, I., Di Timoteo, G., Rossi, F., Morlando, M., Briganti, F., Sthandier, O., Fatica, A., Santini, T., Andronache, A., Wade, M., Laneve, P., Rajewsky, N., & Bozzoni, I. (2017). Circ-ZNF609 Is a Circular RNA that Can Be Translated and Functions in Myogenesis. Molecular cell, 66(1), 22–37.e9.
  • Espinosa-Medina, I.*, Saha, O.*, Boismoreau, F., Chettouh, Z., Rossi, F., Richardson, W. D., & Brunet, J. F. (2016). The sacral autonomic outflow is sympathetic. Science (New York, N.Y.), 354(6314), 893–897.

Select Awards

  • 03/2023: Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions – Individual Fellowship
  • 02/2021: Honourable mention for PhD thesis, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy; Acknowledgement for the best thesis of the 33th cycle of the PhD course in Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • 01/2020: “Cecilia Cioffrese” Malattie Oncologiche Award 2019, Fondazione Carlo Erba, Milan, Italy
  • 04/2018: Excellent Graduate Student Award a.y. 2016/2017 (Premio Laureato Eccellente), Faculty of Mathematical, Physical and Natural Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy