PhD Programme in Molecular and Experimental Medicine (MEM)

The PhD Programme in Molecular and Experimental Medicine aims to address some of the main challenges of life sciences in a highly competitive scientific research environment.
This 3-year international programme provides advanced training in various fields of life sciences and molecular medicine.
The Application Call is closed


The Programme

The MEM PhD Programme provides training in various fields of life sciences and molecular medicine offering a stimulating environment with access to state-of-the-art technology and clinical case lists for translational studies.

Two different curricula are available, candidates are required to specify their curriculum preferences when applying.

  • The MEM Curriculum provides for the research activities to develop along, yet not remain limited to, the following main areas, including: oncological immunopathology, molecular cardiometabolics, genetics, neurosciences. An overall vision of regenerative and precision medicine is the theme running throughout the programme. The curriculum provides specific training for enabling technologies, such as imaging, flow cytometry, genomics and bioinformatics.
  • The MEM-Clinical Curriculum aims to combine basic or clinical experimental research activities with clinical practice involving patient enrolment and assessment in specific trials. The course provides for ordinary clinical practice in the hospital under the supervision of a doctor (up to a maximum of 20 hours per week) and experimental laboratory activities, which include but are not limited to cellular and molecular biology, information technology, immunology and the use of preclinical models. Candidates will be directly responsible for research projects approved by their clinical supervisor and/or laboratory head.

For both curricula, the PhD will be conducted in a stimulating environment involving the organisation of Journal Clubs and seminars given by national and international speakers, participation in congresses, informal meetings between different disciplines, as well as encouraging researchers to work independently and collaborate with groups abroad. Liaising with tutors and non-Italian discussants further develops the international dimension.

Career Opportunities

The PhD program aims to train experts in clinical and industrial research, preparing them to take up careers in biotech companies, translational research, in clinical or academic fields worldwide. Thanks to a “translational” approach, professionals will quickly transfer new knowledge from basic sciences to bio-medicine with the aim of creating new and advanced diagnostic and therapeutic applications.

PhD Coordinator: Prof. Maria Rescigno
Places available

8 places

The number of available places and/or scholarships may increase in the event that external funding becomes available by the deadline set for the completion of the call application procedure.




3 years

Beginning of teaching activities

1st December 2023

Application deadline
11th July 2023
Regolamento PhD MEM
For further information you can contact


Didactic Activities

The PhD course in Molecular and Experimental is articulated into three main types of didactic activities:

Research activities

Every student is assigned a research topic under the supervision of a Supervisor; the research activity in the laboratory is a full-time activity

Mandatory frontal activities

Linguistics, Informatics, Research management and funding, Intellectual property are the main topics

  • Mandatory courses
Course name Year Professor CFU
Scientific Methods I Rosella Visintin 1,5
Science Ethics II + III Mattia Andreoletti 1
Flow cytometry at least once in three years 1,5
Image analysis at least once in three years 1,5
Microscopy at least once in three years 1,5
Scientific Writing II Miriam Alcalay 1,5
Bioinformatics II Simone Puccio 1
Biostatistics – basic I Daniele Piovani 2,5
  • Seminar series (Journal Club on a specific topic between the speaker and the PhD students followed by a public seminar on the same topic)

Elective activities

Seminars and courses, offered by the Humanitas University and Humanitas Research Labs, which the PhD students can freely join according to their research field and interests.

Admission Requirements

MEM Curriculum

Applicants wishing to enrol on the PhD course in Molecular and Experimental Medicine, MEM Curriculum must either have a “laurea magistrale” awarded in accordance with D.M. 270/2004 or equivalent qualification awarded by a foreign university (usually referred to as a Master’s Degree), in one of the subjects listed in the official Call for Applicants.

Applicants who are waiting to be awarded the required qualification at the date of submission can also take part in the selection process providing they have passed all of the Degree course exams at the time of the online application and are awarded the qualification before the beginning of the academic activities. In the event these applicants pass the selection process, their enrolment on the PhD course is conditional upon providing proof that the qualification is awarded.

MEM-Clinical Curriculum

Applicants wishing to enrol on the PhD Course in Molecular and Experimental Medicine, MEM-Clinical Curriculum must:

  • be enrolled on the Medical Register
  • already possess a specialist medical qualification

Alternatively, applications will also be taken from doctors in specialist training who will enrol in the final year in a School of Specialisation at Humanitas University.

Fees and Scholarships

PhD students are required to pay an annual fee for access and attendance, set at €250,00 for the academic year 2023/2024, including the regional tax and stamp duty.

Detailed information about each topic’s scholarship or equivalent contract can be found in the research topics table below, by clicking on each topic ID.

Fondazione Dompé
Fondazione Dompé funds 4 full scholarships for EU students.

Discover our talents founded by Fondazione Dompé, listen to Silvia Penati’s testimonial


How to Apply

  • Registration or access with your LOGINMIUR credentials
  • Application form submission
  • Payment of the application contribution

The application form must be completed in all its parts, on penalty of exclusion. In particular, applicants must submit all of the following documents in PDF format:

  1. Curriculum vitae
  2. Motivation letter
  3. Copy of a valid ID or passport (for Non-EU citizens)
  4. Diploma Supplement
  5. Copy of the receipt of payment of € 30,00

Additionally, applicants may indicate name and contacts of maximum two referees, preferably chosen among those who have had a supervising role of the candidates. The referees will be directly contacted by Humanitas University and asked to complete a brief letter of reference, which should be sent by 14th July.

Further details about the application procedure will be reported in the official call for applicants.


Admission Process

Admission to the PhD Programme is based on a public selection process consisting of:

  • the comparative evaluation of the titles and qualifications and
  • an interview carried out in English by a Committee composed of a maximum of seven members.

The aim of the selection process is to assess the knowledge, competencies and aptitude of the applicants for scientific research as well as their motivation for undertaking the PhD programme.

Prior to the interview, applicants may be asked to take a multiple choice test, aimed at assessing the applicant’s specific knowledge in the fields of the research projects of the Campus.

A good knowledge of English is required and will be tested during the interview.

Should reasons justify it, the test and interview can be conducted via video-conference. Those who intend to conduct the interview via video-conference or request special assistance should specify this on the application form.

Academic Board

PhD CoordinatorProfessor Maria Rescigno

Research Topics

Topic ID Curriculum Supervisor Lab Name Project Title
MEM1 Standard Lugli Lab of Translational Immunology Immunosuppression in the tumor microenvironment mediated by regulatory T cells
MEM2 Standard Chiarito
Cardiovascular department Role of platelet heterogeneity and platelet-leukocyte interactions in coronary syndrome
MEM3 Standard Di Tommaso Hepatobiliary Immunopathology Lab Identification of therapeutic targets using HCC derived organoid augmented with TME components
MEM5 Standard Carlo-Stella Lymphoma Translational Research Lab Single-cell analysis to identify signatures of response to immunotherapy in Diffuse Large B-cell Lymphoma
MEM6 Standard Bonecchi Chemokine biology Rewiring granulopoiesis to promote differentiation of antitumoral neutrophils
MEM7 Standard Matteoli Laboratory of Pharmacology and Brain Pathology – IRCCS Humanitas Research Hospital Role of the immune system in neuronal functions
MEM8 Standard Matteoli
Pharmacology and Brain Pathology Lab Investigating the role of Oligophrenin-1 SUMOylation in the etiology and treatment of X-Linked Intellectual Disability
MEM9 Standard Lovisa
Plasticity, Fibrosis and Cancer Lab. Role of epithelial plasticity in cancer initiation.
MEM10 Standard Menna
Pharmacology and brain pathology Role of Pentraxin 3 in prenatal inflammation on foetal neurodevelopment
MEM11 Standard Vetrano
Laboratory of Gastrointestinal Immunopathology The use of Artificial intelligence for addressing the role of Lipids in the Pathogenesis of Fibrostenotic Crohn’s disease
MEM12 Standard Rescigno
Mucosal Immunology Testing the selectivity and therapeutic potential of biological treatments targeting different TSLP (Thymic stromal lymphopoietin) isoforms
MEM13 Standard Bonecchi Chemokine biology Role of chemokine receptors in neutrophil differentiation and effector activities in tumor microenvironment
MEM14 Standard Di Mitri Tumor microenvironment Unit Dissecting the role of innate immunity in pathology
MEM15 Standard Condorelli Molecular Cardiology The link between metabolism and heart failure
MEM16 Standard Greco Circadian Metabolism Lab Heart-to-liver cross-talk in heart failure
MEM17 Standard Greco Circadian Metabolism Lab Molecular mechanisms underlying circadian disruption in heart failure
MEM18 Standard Lodato Identifying how cortical neuronal diversity influences early spontaneous activity (before birth), and the molecular features and functional role of developing neurons.
MEM19 Standard Lodato Multiple model systems to test new RNA drugs to treat genetic diseases impacting the central nervous system, by exploiting novel strategies that allow an in-depth characterization of their pharmacodynamic profile and pharmacokinetics.
MEM20 Standard Rescigno Postbiotica Functional role of Postbiotics in gut-brain axis dysfunctions
MEM21 Standard Passoni
Laboratory of Pharmacology and Brain Pathology Cancer neuroscience: translational opportunities for glioblastoma
MEM22 Standard Di Mitri Tumor microenvironment Unit Unravelling the role of the innate immune response in resistance to anti-cancer therapies
MEM23 Standard Kallikourdis Adaptive Immunity Laboratory Deciphering the triangular axis of immune, cardiac and pregnancy-related disease via multi-omics analysis, as a path to improved personalized therapy
MEM24 Standard Rescigno Mucosal Immunology and Microbiota Unit Nutrition, Endometriosis, and Immunity: Investigating Molecular Interactions
MEM25 Standard Fossati Cell Biology of the Synapse Lab Investigation of genetic determinants of Angelman syndrome pathophysiology in human neurons
MEM26 Standard Condorelli Molecular Cardiology Genome editing approach for the therapy of LMNA-dependent inherited cardiomyopathy


Humanitas is a highly specialized Hospital, Research and Teaching Center. Built around centers for the prevention and treatment of cancer, cardiovascular, neurological and orthopedic disease – together with an Ophthalmic Center and a Fertility Center – Humanitas also operates a highly specialised Emergency Department.