Andrea Battistoni




  • Name: Andrea Battistoni
  • Specialized in: Metal in biology, Metal transport, Host-pathogen interaction, Cystic Fibrosis, Antioxidants
  • Email:

Additonal Information:

Author of more than 115 papers in international refereed journals. Two patents.  H-index: 30 according to Scopus, 34 according to Google scholar. Citations > 2900 (data from Scopus or ISI WOS).

He acts as a reviewer for several Journals (including: J. Biol. Chem, Biochemistry, Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Microbiology, Molecular Microbiology, Infection and Immnunity, Plos one; Biometals) and national and international granting agencies (including: Wellcome Trust; Czech Science Foundation (GACR), Honk Kong Research Grants Council (RGC); Romanian Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding (uefiscdi); Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Latvia).

Member of the Editorial board of the Open Journal of Microbiology and of the World Journal of Biological Chemistry.


Financial support has been received  from CNR, MURST, the Italian Ministry of Health, Fondazione Roma and the Italian Foundation for Cystic Fibrosis Research.

Professional Memberships

International Biometals Society (IBS);

American Society for Microbiology (ASM);

Italian Society for Biochemistry (SIB);

Italian Society for the study of Cystic Fibrosis (SIFC)

Research field

The research interests of my group are mainly focused on the role of metalloenzymes and transition metal ions in the host-pathogen interaction. In recent years we have contribute to prove that bacterial pathogens competes with their host for zinc binding and that high affinity zinc transporters are key for bacterial ability to successfully colonize the host.  More recently, we have identified a novel zinc import system in Pseudomonas aeruginosa that is based on the secretion of a zincophore (a small organic molecule able to bind extracellular zinc and deliver the metal to the cell) and that plays a critical role in pulmonary infections. Our goal is to use this information to develop strategies able to interfere with metal homeostasis in order to control bacterial infections in Cystic Fibrosis and other diseases.

Selected Publications within the last 10 years

  • Mastropasqua MC, D’Orazio M, Cerasi M, Pacello F, Gismondi A, Canini A, Canuti L, Consalvo A, Ciavardelli D, Chirullo B, Pasquali P, Battistoni A. Growth of P. aeruginosa in zinc poor environments is promoted by a nicotianamine-related metallophore. Mol Microbiol (2017) 106, 543-561
  • Battistoni A, Ammendola S, Chiancone E, Ilari A. A novel antimicrobial approach based on the inhibition of zinc uptake in Salmonella enterica Future Med Chem. (2017) 9, 899-910.
  • Cutone A, Howes BD, Miele AE, Miele R, Giorgi A, Battistoni A, Smulevich G, Musci G, di Patti MC. Pichia pastoris Fep1 is a [2Fe-2S] protein with a Zn finger that displays an unusual oxygen-dependent role in cluster binding. Sci Reports (2016) 6, 31872
  • Diaz-Ochoa VE, Lam D, Lee CS, Klaus S, Behnsen J , Liu JZ, Nuccio S-P, Rathi SG, Mastroianni JR, Edwards RA, Jacobo CM, Cerasi M, Battistoni A, Ouellette AJ, Chazin WJ, Skaar EP, Raffatellu M. Salmonella mitigates oxidative stress and thrives in the inflamed gut by evading calprotectin-mediated manganese sequestration. Cell Host Microbes (2016) 19, 814-825.
  • Pacello F, D’Orazio M, Battistoni A, An ERp57-mediated disulphide exchange promotes the interaction between Burkholderia cenocepacia and epithelial respiratory cells. Sci Reports (2016) 6:21140
  • Drumo R, Pesciaroli M, Ruggeri , Tarantino M, Chirullo B, Pistoia C Petrucci P, Martinelli M, Moscati L, Manuali E, Pavone S, Picciolini M, Ammendola S, Gabai G, Battistoni A, Pezzotti G, Alborali GL, Napolioni V, Pasquali P and Magistrali MC, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium exploits inflammation to modify swine intestinal microbiota. Front Cell Infect Microbiol (2016) 5:106 .
  • Chirullo B, Ammendola S, Leonardi L, Falcini R, Petrucci P, Pistoia C, Vendetti S, Battistoni A, Pasquali P. Attenuated mutant strain of Salmonella Typhimurium lacking the ZnuABC transporter contrasts tumor growth promoting anti-cancer immune response. Oncotarget. (2015) 6, 17648-60.
  • D’Orazio M., Mastropasqua MC, Cerasi M, Pacello F, Consalvo A, Chirullo B, Mortensen B, Skaar EP, Ciavardelli D, Pasquali P and Battistoni A. P. aeruginosa capability to recruit zinc under conditions of limited metal availability is affected by inactivation of the ZnuABC transporter. Metallomics (2015) 7, 1023-35
  • Cerasi M, Liu JZ, Ammendola S, Poe AJ, Petrarca P, Pesciaroli M, Pasquali P, Raffatellu M, Battistoni A. The ZupT transporter plays an important role in zinc homeostasis and contributes to Salmonella enterica virulence. Metallomics. (2014) 6, 845-53
  • Ilari A, Alaleona F, Tria G, Petrarca P, Battistoni A, Zamparelli C, Verzili D, Falconi M, Chiancone E. The Salmonella enterica ZinT structure, zinc affinity and interaction with the high-affinity uptake protein ZnuA provide insight into the management of periplasmic zinc. Biochim Biophys Acta (2014) 1840, 535-544
  • Cerasi M, Ammendola, S, Battistoni A. Competition for zinc binding in the host-pathogen interaction. Front Cell Infect Microbiol (2013) 3:108.
  • Galli F, Battistoni A, Gambari R, Pompella A, Bragonzi A, Pilolli F, Iuliano L, Piroddi M, Dechecchi MC, Cabrini G. Oxidative stress and antioxidant therapy in cystic fibrosis. Biochem Biophys Acta (2012) 1822, 690-713
  • D’Orazio M, Pacello F and Battistoni A. Extracellular glutathione decreases the ability of Burkholderia cenocepacia to penetrate into epithelial cells and to induce an inflammatory response. Plos One (2012)  7, e47550.
  • Liu JZ, Jellbauer S, Poe A, Ton V, Pesciaroli M, Kehl-Fie T, Restrepo NA, Hosking M, Edwards RA, Battistoni A,Pasquali P, Lane TE, Chazin WJ, Vogl T, Roth J, Skaar EP and Raffatellu M. Zinc sequestration by the neutrophil protein calprotectin enhances Salmonella growth in the inflamed gut. Cell Host and Microbe (2012) 11, 227-239.
  • Petrarca P, Ammendola S, Pasquali P, Battistoni A. The Zur-regulated ZinT protein is an auxiliary component of the high affinity ZnuABC zinc transporter that facilitates metal recruitment during severe zinc shortage. J. Bacteriol (2010) 192, 1553-1564


Education & Training

  • 2013

    Present Full professor

    Present Full professor of Biochemistry at the Department of Biology of the University of Rome Tor Vergata

  • 2001−2013

    Associate professor

    Associate professor of Biochemistry at the Department of Biology of the University of Rome Tor Vergata.

  • 1993−2001


    Researcher in the Biochemistry group at the Department of Biology of the University of Rome Tor Vergata.

  • 1991


    Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology, Dept. of Biology, University of Rome Tor Vergata.

  • 1986


    D.Sci. Biological Science Degree, University of Rome La Sapienza (I).