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Associate Professor of Applied physics [FIS/07]

Since March 2020, I’m an Associate Professor of Applied Physics at the Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Catania.
After obtaining my M.S. and PhD in Physics at the University of Catania (2008), I worked as a Post-Doctoral fellow between 2008 and 2013 at the Laboratory for Fluorescence Dynamics, University of California at Irvine, under the supervision of Prof. E. Gratton, where I developed fluorescence microscopy and spectroscopy based methods to measure protein dynamics and interactions in live cells. In 2013 I joined the Nanoscopy group at the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia in Genoa, directed by A. Diaspro, where I developed new super-resolution imaging techniques and novel image analysis tools and where I was appointed Researcher in 2018. More recently, funded grants (and established collaborations) boosted my recent research activity towards the application of nanoscopy to the investigation of molecular mechanisms of cancer formation.

2020 – present    Associate Professor - Department of Physics and Astronomy "Ettore Majorana", University of Catania, Italy
2020 – present    Affiliated Researcher - Nanoscopy and NIC, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Italy
2020                    Qualified as full professor for the area 02/D1

2020 – present   Member of the Commissione Paritetica Docenti-Studenti
2018 – 2020        Researcher - Nanoscopy and NIC, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Italy
2013 – 2018        Post-doctoral fellow - Nanoscopy and NIC, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Italy
2008 – 2013        Post-doctoral fellow - Laboratory for Fluorescence Dynamics, University of California, Irvine (UCI), USA

2008     PhD in Physics, summa cum laude. Department of Physics, University of Catania, Italy.
2007    Visiting PhD Student. Laboratory for Fluorescence Dynamics - University of California, Irvine, USA
2004     M.S. Physics, 110/110 summa cum laude. Department of Physics, University of Catania, Italy.

2019 - 2024    AIRC - My First AIRC Grant - Optical nanoscopy to investigate the origin and evolution of oncogene-induced genomic damage (PI)
2016 - 2018    AIRC-CARIPLO TRIDEO - Super-resolution imaging of the organization of transcription and replication during oncogene-induced replicative stress (PI)    

2021                Young Fluorescence Investigator Award. The Young Fluorescence Investigator Award is given to an outstanding researcher at the beginning of his or her career for significant advancements and/or contributions in or using fluorescence methodologies.

2016     TRIDEO Award by Italian Association for Cancer Research (AIRC), the main non-profit association funding cancer research in Italy. “The aim of TRIDEO (TRansforming IDEas in Oncological research) is to encourage creative, out-of-the-box thinkers to pursue exceptionally innovative ideas in cancer research. Exceptional innovation and originality, and a solid scientific approach are three features that should stand out in any TRIDEO’s successful application”
2016    American Biophysical Society (BPS) Travel Award
2015     Italian Society for Pure and Applied Biophysics (SIBPA) Travel Award
2012    Epithelial Transport Group Young Investigator Travel Award (American Physiological Society Meeting, san Diego)
2005 – 2008     PhD Fellowship, University of Catania, Italy

2021 – 2024       Member of the ‘Consiglio Direttivo’ of the Italian Society of Pure and Applied Biophysics (SIBPA)
2009 – present    Member of the Biophysical Society

Last Update 26/10/2023

N.B. the number of publications can affect the loading time of the information

Academic Year 2021/2022

Academic Year 2020/2021

Academic Year 2019/2020
    Bachelor's Degree in Catering and logistics science and technology of the Mediterranean food - 1st Year


- Development of optical super-resolution microscopy methods
- Imaging of chromatin at high spatial and temporal resolution
- Oncogene-induced alterations of DNA replication and transcription dynamics
- Advanced correlation methods for the analysis of fluorescence data and images



- Prof. Alberto Diaspro, Super-resolution imaging of chromatin, Nanoscopy, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, and Department of Physics, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy.
- Prof. Pier G. Pelicci, Oncogene-induced alterations of replication and transcription dynamics, ‘Molecular mechanisms of cancer and aging’ Unit, European Institute of Oncology (IEO), Milan, Italy.
- Prof. Enrico Gratton, Advanced correlation methods for the analysis of fluorescence data and images, Laboratory for Fluorescence Dynamics – Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of California, Irvine, US.
- Dr. Giuseppe Vicidomini, Development of high spatio-temporal resolution (STED, ISM) imaging technologies, Molecular Microscopy and Spectroscopy, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genoa, Italy.
- Dr. Davide Mazza, Single-molecule spectroscopy of nuclear transcription factors in live cells, Experimental Imaging Center, San Raffaele Hospital, Milan, Italy.
- Prof. Moshe Levi, Regulation of renal Sodium-Phosphate cotransporters investigated by FLIM-FRET and FCS, University of Colorado, Denver


  1. L Lanzanò*, I C Hernandez, M Castello, E Gratton, A Diaspro, and G Vicidomini. Encoding and decoding spatio-temporal information for super-resolution microscopy. Nature Communications 6:6701 (2015). We use for the first time the phasor method to improve spatial resolution and remove background in time-resolved STED microscopy.
  2. L. Lanzanò*, L. Scipioni, M. Di Bona, P. Bianchini, R. Bizzarri, F. Cardarelli, A. Diaspro & G. Vicidomini. Measurement of nanoscale three-dimensional diffusion in the interior of living cells by STED-FCS. Nature Communications 8:65 DOI: 10.1038/s41467-017-00117-2 (2017). We demonstrate, for the first time, efficient STED-FCS in 3D in the interior of live cells, by combining STED-FCS with the analysis of fluorescence lifetime.
  3. Sarmento M., M. Oneto, S. Pelicci, L. Pesce, L. Scipioni, M. Faretta, L. Furia, G.I. Dellino, P.G. Pelicci, P. Bianchini, A. Diaspro and L. Lanzanò*. Exploiting the tunability of stimulated emission depletion microscopy for super-resolution imaging of nuclear structures. Nature Communications (2018) DOI:10.1038/s41467-018-05963-2. We show that information encoded within a tunable depletion power can be used to improve spatial resolution in STED microscopy.
  4. S. Pelicci, G. Tortarolo, G Vicidomini, A Diaspro, L Lanzanò*. Improving SPLIT-STED super-resolution imaging with tunable depletion and excitation power. J Phys D: Appl Phys 53, 234003 (2020) We show that encoding information into both STED and excitation power can improve spatial resolution and reduce photobleaching.
  5. S Pelicci, A Diaspro, Luca Lanzanò* (2019). Chromatin nanoscale compaction in live cells visualized by acceptor-to-donor ratio corrected Förster resonance energy transfer between DNA dyes. Journal of Biophotonics e201900164. We introduce a method to convert FRET values into nanometer distances, under conditions of variable acceptor-donor ratio.
  6. Michele Oneto, Lorenzo Scipioni, Maria J Sarmento, Isotta Cainero, Simone Pelicci, Laura Furia, Pier G Pelicci, Gaetano I Dellino, Paolo Bianchini, Mario Faretta, Enrico Gratton, Alberto Diaspro, L. Lanzanò* (2019). Nanoscale Distribution of Nuclear Sites by Super-Resolved Image Cross-Correlation Spectroscopy. Biophysical Journal, 117, 2054–2065. We introduce a method to extract nanometer distances from 2-color STED-ICCS data.
  7. Melody Di Bona, Michael A Mancini, Davide Mazza, Giuseppe Vicidomini, Alberto Diaspro, Luca Lanzanò*. Measuring Mobility in Chromatin by Intensity-Sorted FCS. Biophysical journal 116 (6) 987-999 (2019). We show that intensity-based segmentation of FCS and STED-FCS data provide more accurate measurement of GFP diffusion in the nucleus of live cells.
  8. L. Scipioni, M. Di Bona, G. Vicidomini, A. Diaspro & L. Lanzanò*. Local raster image correlation spectroscopy generates high-resolution intracellular diffusion maps. Communications Biology (2018) []. We show that local analysis of RICS data produce maps of GFP diffusion in the nucleus of live cells.
  9. Scipioni L., E. Gratton, A. Diaspro, L. Lanzanò*. Phasor Analysis of Local ICS Detects Heterogeneity in Size and Number of Intracellular Vesicles, Biophysical Journal (2016), 111, 619–629. We introduced the concept of ‘local analysis’ in ICS to analyze spatial fluctuations in live cells.


Researcher unique identifier(s): ORCID 0000-0001-6539-394X