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Dr Sergio Bertazzo
3.05
Department of Medical Physics & Biomedical Engineering
University College London, Malet Place Engineering Building
London
WC1E 6BT
Appointment
  • Lecturer
  • Dept of Med Phys & Biomedical Eng
  • Faculty of Engineering Science
Biography

I joined the Department of Medical Physics & Biomedical Engineering after a Junior Research Fellowship at Imperial College London, a postdoctoral stay in Germany and another in Brazil.
            I have been working for a long time now with different electron microscopes and developed several new methods to prepare and image cells and, more particularly, calcified tissues. My research has so far been able to physicochemically describe how hydroxyapatite (i.e. the calcium phosphate that forms bone and teeth) behaves in biological fluids; determine the nature of the mineral present in cardiovascular calcification (e.g. in atherosclerosis, aortic valve stenosis and rheumatic fever); correlate different kinds of microscopy; and, finally, identify the possibility of preservation of organic materials in fossils that were not exceptionally preserved.
            My research interests are broadly related to the formation, behavior, and nature of minerals in different biological contexts, what I call Mineralomics.

Research Themes
Research Summary

Mineralomics

            The study of hard tissues from vertebrates (e.g. bone and teeth) and from other animals (e.g. shells and exoskeletons of crustaceans) is largely based on physical science characterization techniques. Among these techniques, Electron Microscopy (SEM and TEM), diffraction techniques (x-ray and electron) and, more recently, Focused Ion Beam (FIB) have been offering answers to fundamental questions about the nature, origin, and function of these biological materials.

            Physical-chemistry research has effectively contributed to expanding our understanding of several biological systems and produced a decisive impact on medical research by repeatedly revealing how different diseases originate and develop. The synergy between physical science and medicine has, in this way, helped design and implement novel preventative therapies and treatments. Beyond that, physical science techniques have also been an endless source of inspiration for new materials and technologies based on the unique materials found in nature.

            We are using and developing several techniques from physical sciences to answer important biological and medical questions related to the nature of hard tissues and widespread diseases (e.g. arteriosclerosis, aortic valve stenosis, rheumatic fever and all kinds of ectopic calcification) in which a hard material is pathologically formed in the human.

 

Our group has four main research lines:

Pathological mineralization

Mineralized tissues

Palaeontology

Bio-imaging

Teaching Summary


Appointments
01-AUG-2015 Lecturer Department of Medical Physics & Biomedical Engineering UCL, United Kingdom
Academic Background
2007 Dr Doctor – Chemical Physics Universidade Estadual De Campinas, Sao Paulo
2004 MSc Master of Science – Chemistry Universidade Estadual De Campinas, Sao Paulo
2001 BSc Bachelor of Science – Chemistry Universidade Estadual De Campinas, Sao Paulo
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