Working in our labs

The IEO laboratories are modeled to support and augment interaction among all researchers. Indeed, they are composed of laboratory clusters, completely flexible open spaces of small functional entities (islands of 6 scientists), surrounded by all support units needed for the proper functioning of the cluster (instrument rooms, cold rooms, offices, etc.). Open spaces guarantee maximal communication and collaboration among people belonging to different research groups.
Lab research activities are coordinated by the lab manager, who contributes to harmonization and innovation by providing organizational direction, daily problem solving and technological news.
Implementation and amelioration of the lab procedures are discussed and coordinated by the Lab Quality Committee.

  • Lab Quality Committee

    Activities :

    • control and prevention of the biological risk of our lab experimentation
    • innovation of our scientific procedures and of the lab equipments to:
      o improve the quality of the scientific process
      o reduce general costs
    • develop and ameliorate new organizational and management procedures to be more efficient and effective


    Unit Director TIV

    Luisa Lanfrancone

    Lab Manager DEO

    Samantha Seresini

    Lab Manager MMC

    Natalia Meani

    Coordinator of Cell Biology Unit

    Giuseppina Giardina

    Senior Researcher DDP

    Oronzina Botrugno

    Coordinator Nucleid Acid Unit

    Loris Bernard

  • Lab organization

    There are five clusters in the department, each coordinated by one group leader or senior scientist among those associated with the Cluster:

    • Theodor Boveri
    • Barbara McClintock
    • Rosalind Franklin
    • Jacques Monod
    • Otto Warburg

    Each cluster coordinator is in charge of organizing and managing the cluster in a manner that reflects its specific needs and configuration, by acting in synergy with the lab manager and the research technicians associated to the cluster as well as with every one who is willing to actively contribute to improve working efficiency and conditions in the cluster and in the department. To this aim cluster meetings are periodically organized. During these meetings, issues proposed by each cluster member to the cluster referents concerning daily organization and/or specific needs (purchase of new instruments, reagents, safety etc...) are discussed. Any decision/implementation discussed during the meeting is sent to cluster members by mail as brief report (minute of the meeting). Cluster members must read the report and stick to new rules/implementations. To facilitate the communication inside the cluster, all the members are gathered into a cluster mailing list.

    The cluster needs and/or problems that are related to the department activities and management are discussed within the Department Management Committee. This committee, besides guiding all the structural activities of the Department, reviews requests and implements their solution.

    Research technicians are vital figures of the cluster. They both take care of daily organization and management of the cluster and monitor that cluster members work following the security rules. They have the mandate to report any behavior not congruent with the rules of the department.

    Each cluster is provided with common spaces. Scientists are responsible for common spaces that have to be maintained in good operative conditions.

    • Cold rooms (4°C). On each floor there is one cold room (4°C). Cold rooms are organized to have stock and work spaces. The organization is established by the cluster coordinator and lab manager and managed by cluster technicians.
    • Instrument rooms. They are provided with two chemical hoods, fridges and freezers (-20°C and -80°C), ultra and super-centrifuges, incubators, a spectrophotometer etc… Space inside fridges and freezers are distributed among groups and cluster members according to the specific needs.

    Department areas that are common to various clusters are:

    • Image acquisition rooms. There are two dark rooms and one enlightened room where image acquisition instruments are located.
    • Sonication room. Before entering the room, make sure to wear the security devices available outside the room in the close proximity of the door.
    • Nitrogen room. The nitrogen room is located in the basement. The cell biology unit manages the organization and the distribution of the spaces in the nitrogen tanks.
    • Computer room and meeting rooms. There is a computer room on 3rd floor, building 13. The access is allowed to all scientists of the Department. On the same floor, there are five meeting rooms that can be booked by any scientist of the department through the dentroweb booking system.

    The MMC Program is located on the 3rd floor of the IEO hospital. It consists of two research laboratories (a big one with 50 benches and a smaller one with 10) and specific service rooms.

    The 50 benches laboratory is an open space composed of:

    • small Functional Units (12 islands of 4-6 scientists), each one corresponding to a specific Clinical Lab Unit (namely The Clinical Breast Lab, the Clinical Lung Lab, the Clinical Prostate Lab and the Clinical Ovary Lab);
    • the Computational Unit
    • the Molecular Pathology Unit;
    • the Clinical Biomarkers Lab.

    The 10 benches laboratory accommodates specific research activities mainly devoted to Recombinant Antibody Library Screening and Selection.

    In addition, Technical rooms support the research activity:

    • two common Instrument rooms fully equipped with chemicals hoods, centrifuges, shakers for bacteria and the Akta system for protein purification;
    • the Automation Lab with two Hamilton platforms for fully automated nucleic acid extraction and PCR set up;
    • the Imaging Area comprehensive of confocal, TIRF and time lapse systems for in vivo imaging, cell sorter and fluorescent directed microscopes;
    • the Hot Room for experimentation with radioisotopes;
    • the Tissue Culture Facility;
    • the Kitchen.
  • Safety rules

    • No smoking is allowed in any indoor area of the building.
    • No drinking or eating, or storage of food is allowed in the laboratories: an organized break area is provided.
    • It is allowed to store in a personal cleaned drawer of the desk in the laboratory only a bottle of water for urgent needs.
    • Lab coats, gloves and specific security devices have to be always worn during experimental work in the laboratory. Do not use gloves outside the laboratory to avoid contaminations.
    • Each scientist has to follow the necessary precautions for a safe handling and storage of all the reagents. Solvents, harmful solutions and reagents are stored in dedicated cupboards and have to be used under chemical hood. Before using a chemical make sure you have read and understood the risks related with its handling (Material Safety Data Sheet).
    • Waste must be discarded in a proper manner. All the information and procedures for correct special and urban (separate collection) waste disposal can be found in the dentroweb waste management page (see above). The lists of most common reagents and solutions with the indication for a proper disposal are present either in the laboratories and the instrument rooms. For further information, for any question or problem concerning the waste disposal process please ask the waste management staff.



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