Alessandro Borsellini

Every time a cell divide, two identical copies of the genome are made and equally distributed between the two daughter cells. To allow a proper distribution of the two copies of the genome, the DNA is compacted into structured chromosomes. A plethora of protein complexes actively organise the DNA into chromosomes to allow proper cell division.

My research is aimed at understanding the molecular mechanisms that regulate the folding of the human genome into structured chromosomes. For this I use a combination of biochemistry, single-molecule methods, and cryo-EM.

I performed my bachelor’s studies in Chemistry followed by a master in Chemistry of Biological Systems at Sapienza University of Rome. After this, I did my PhD studies in the laboratory of Meindert Lamers at Leiden University, The Netherlands. During my PhD I have investigated molecular mechanisms involved in DNA replication and DNA mismatch repair using a combination of structural and biochemical approaches. In 2023 I joined the Human Technopole in the laboratory of Prof. Alessandro Vannini for my postdoctoral research.


  • Cryogenic electron microscopy structures reveal how ATP and DNA binding in MutS coordinates sequential steps of DNA mismatch repair
    A. Borsellini, V. Kunetsky, P. Friedhoff, M.H. Lamers. Nature Structural & Molecular Biology (January 2022)
  • MutL binds to 3′ resected DNA ends and blocks DNA polymerase access
    A. Borsellini, J.H.G. Lebbink, M.H. Lamers. Nucleic Acids Research (June 2022)
  • A four-point molecular handover during Okazaki maturation.
    M.M. Botto, A. Borsellini & M.H. Lamers. Nature Structural & Molecular Biology (August 2023).

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