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- Principal Clinical Research Associate
- Molecular Neuroscience
- Institute of Neurology
- Faculty of Brain Sciences
Paola is a Principal Clinical Research Associate at the Department of Molecular Neuroscience, UCL Institute of Neurology. She studied Medicine specialising in Neurology and also gained her PhD at the University of Rome, La Sapienza, in Italy. During 1992-1995 she was a Research Fellow at the Institute of Neurology UCL, Queen Square in Department of Clinical Neurology, before returning to the Rome. In 2004 she was successful in gaining a Fellowship from Ataxia UK and was made a Senior Clinical Associate again in the Department of Clinical Neurology at Queen Square. In 2005 the Ataxia Centre she established was given a Centre of Excellence Award and based on this model, three additional Centres have been established in the UK. In 2009 she was promoted to Principal Clinical Research Associate based on her important contributions to research, funding, teaching and enabling activities. She serves on several National and International Steering Committees. In 2016 she was endowed with the Health Professional Award (Neurology Advocacy Awards) by the European Federation of Neurological Associations (EFNA).
Paola has a longstanding interest in the pathogenesis of neurological disorders, in particular the inherited cerebellar ataxias and other movement disorders. At UCL, Paola has been researching the mechanisms that underlie neuronal degeneration in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Paola's contribution has been instrumental in the identification of genes causing different autosomal dominant cerebellar disorders. Paola's research has also expanded the clinical spectrum of several rare inherited disorders. Paola's research team focuses on understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases with a particular emphasis on triplet repeat conditions. This implies the use of molecular and cell biology techniques and more recently, live imaging. Paola is an active major contributor to two European consortiums on focused on the natural history of the inherited ataxias (EUROSCA and EFACTS) and is involved in the translation of basic research findings into the clinic for use in both diagnostic testing and therapeutic trials.She have been PI and Co-PI in multicentre multinational drug trials in Friedreich’s ataxia. One of these studies have identified a well tolerated dose of nicotinamide ( vit B3) that can address the causative deficit in this disorder.
She is currently the first supervisor of four PhD students and Master students.
|1993||PhD||Doctor of Philosophy – Genetics||Universita degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza|
|1985||MD||Doctor of Medicine – Pre-clinical Medicine||Universita degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza|
|PhD||Doctor of Philosophy – Neurogenetics||Institute of Neurology|