Letizia Zullo

Researcher
Researcher

Contacts

Largo Rosanna Benzi, 10, Torre D1 16132 Genova, Italy
+39 010 5558 382

About

I graduated in Biological Sciences in 2001 at the Federico II University, Naples, Italy working on the Central and peripheral control of “patterning” of the cromatophores in Loligo vulgaris.

I received my PhD in Applied Biology in the 2004 at the Federico II University, Naples, Italy working on the organization of the higher motor centers in Octopus vulgaris.

From 2004 to 2006 I was PostDoc in the lab of Prof. Benjamin Hochner at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem working on the electrophysiology of the Octopus CNS and arm.

From 2007 to 2012 I was PostDoc at the Department of Neuroscience and Brain Technologies, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova, Italy. 

Currently I'm Researcher at the Department of Neuroscience and Brain Technologies, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia working in the field of motor control of hyper-redundant limbs.

Projects

The aim of my research is to investigate the properties of the Octopus arm sensory-motor systems, the muscle mechanics, structure and molecular determinant of muscle formation with a special focus on their application in the bio-robotic field. I carry on two main research lines aiming at (i) elucidating the mechanisms of neural control and coordination of muscle cell ensembles with particular attention to their implementation in a bio-robotic environment; (ii) deciphering the molecular determinant of muscle formation and regeneration relevant to regenerative medicine.

Project link:

EU-FP7 OCTOPUS project n.:231608 http://www.octopusproject.eu/

COST 015/13 (COST Action FA1301): 
http://www.cost.eu/domains_actions/fa/Actions/FA1301
 

Selected Publications

PUBLICATIONS

  1. Nakajima R, Shigeno S, Zullo L, De Sio F and Schmidt MR (2018) Cephalopods between Science, Art, and Engineering: a contemporary synthesis. Front. Commun. In press doi: 10.3389/fcomm.2018.00020
  2. Zullo L, Buschiazzo A, Massollo M, Riondato M, Democrito A,  Marini C, Benfenati F, Sambuceti G (2018) 18F-FDG micro-PET imaging for research investigations in the Octopus vulgaris: applications and future directions in invertebrate neuroscience and tissue regeneration. Journal of Nuclear Medicine. In press doi: 10.2967/jnumed.117.205393.
  3. Zullo A, Simone E, Grimaldi M, Gagliardi M, Zullo L, Matarazzo MR, Mancini FP (2018) Effect of nutrient deprivation on the expression and the epigenetic signature of sirtuin genes. Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases. In press. doi: 10.1016/j.numecd.2018.02.004.
  4. Zullo L, Fossati SM, Imperadore P, Nödl MT (2017) Molecular determinants of Cephalopod muscles and their implication in muscle regeneration. Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology, 5:53. doi:  10.3389/fcell.2017.00053
  5. Kang R, Guglielmino E, Zullo L, Branson DT, Godage I and Caldwell DG (2016) Embodiment design of soft continuum robots. Advances in Mechanical Engineering, 8(4): 1–13. 
  6. Nödl MT, Fossati SM, Domingues P, Sánchez FJ, Zullo L (2015) The making of an octopus arm. Evo Devo , 6:19.
  7. Fossati SM, Candiani S, Nödl MT, Maragliano L, Pennuto M, Domingues P,  Benfenati F, Pestarino M, Zullo L (2014) Identification and expression of Acetylcholinesterase in Octopus vulgaris arm development and regeneration: a conserved role for ACHE? Mol Neurobiol., 52(1):45-56.
  8. Fiorito G, Affuso A, Anderson DB, Basil J, Bonnaud L, Botta G, Cole A, D'Angelo L, De Girolamo P, Dennison N, Dickel L, Di Cosmo A, Di Cristo C, Gestal C, Fonseca R, Grasso F, Kristiansen T, Kuba M, Maffucci F, Manciocco A, Mark FC, Melillo D, Osorio D, Palumbo A, Perkins K, Ponte G, Raspa M, Shashar N, Smith J, Smith D, Sykes A, Villanueva R, Tublitz NZullo L, Andrews P. (2014). Cephalopods in neuroscience: regulations, research and the 3Rs. Invert Neuroscience, 14(1):13-36.
  9. Guglielmino E, Godage I, Zullo L and Caldwell DG (2013) A Pragmatic Bio-inspired Approach to the Design of Octopus-inspired Arms. IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2013), Tokyo, Japan.
  10. Fossati SM, Carella F, De Vico G, Benfenati F, Zullo L (2013) Octopus arm regeneration: role of Acetylcholine Esterase during morphological modification. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 447: 93-99.
  11. Zullo L, Chiappalone M, Martinoia S, Benfenati F. (2012) A "spike-based" grammar underlies directional modification in network connectivity: effect on bursting activity and implications for bio-hybrids systems. PLoS One; 7(11): e49299.
  12. Guglielmino E, Zullo L, Cianchetti M, Follador M, Branson DT and Caldwell D G (2012).The Application of Embodiment Theory to the Design and Control of an Octopus-like Robotic Arm, IEEE Int. Conf. on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2012), St. Paul, Minnesota, USA, 5277-5282.
  13. Zullo L, Fossati SM, Benfenati F. (2011) Transmission of sensory responses in the peripheral nervous system of the arm of Octopus vulgaris. Vie et Milieu/Life & Environment,61 (4): 197-201.
  14. Fossati SM, Benfenati F, Zullo L (2011) Morphological characterization of the Octopus arm. Vie et Milieu/Life & Environment, 61 (4): 191-195.
  15. Fossati SM, Carella F, Benfenati F, Zullo L (2011) Octopus arm regeneration and its potential implication in reparative pathways. Journal of Shellfish Research 30, 3: 1003.
  16. Zullo L, Hochner B (2011) A new perspective on the organization of an invertebrate brain. Communicative and Integrative Biology 4, 1: 26–29.
  17. Fossati S.M., Benfenati F., Hochner B. and Zullo L. (2009) Morphological characterization of the octopus arm relevant to biorobotics. J Mol Neurosci 39 (Suppl 1):S39.
  18. Zullo L, Sumbre G, Agnisola C, Flash T, Hochner B (2009) Nonsomatotopic organization of the Higher Motor Centers in Octopus. Current Biology 19(19):1632-6.
  19. Kuba MJ, Zullo L, Byrne RA, Hochner B (2006) Visual habituation in the common octopus (Octopus vulgaris). Acta Universitatis Carolinae- Geologica 49: 141-144.

BOOK CHAPTERS

  1. Zullo L., Imperadore P. (2017) “Regeneration and healing” in Handbook of Pathogens and diseases in european cephalopods (in press).
  2. Levy G, Nesher N, Zullo L, and Hochner B (2016) “Motor control in soft bodied animals – the octopus”, in The ‘Oxford Handbook of Invertebrate Neurobiology”. Oxford University Press. DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190456757.013.36
  3. Zullo L. (2016) “Otto braccia, tre cuori e un grande cervello: il Polpo tra mito e scienza” in ‘Un Mare di Scienza’. De Ferrari Editore e Genova University Press.
  4. Di Cosmo A, Bertapelle C, Polese G, Zullo L, Palumbo A. (2015). Cap.5.6: Cefalopodi, in ‘Benessere ed animal care dell’animale da laboratorio’. Ed. Point Veterinaire Italie srl.

 

IIT Publications

  • 2018
  • Zullo L.iit, Buschiazzo A., Massollo M., Riondato M., Democrito A., Marini C., Benfenati F.iit, Sambuceti G.
    DOI

    18F-FDG micro-PET imaging for research investigations in the Octopus vulgaris: applications and future directions in invertebrate neuroscience and tissue regeneration.

    The Journal of Nuclear Medicine
  • Nakajima R., Shigeno S., Zullo L.iit, De Sio F., Schmidt M.R.
    DOI

    Cephalopods between Science, Art, and Engineering: a contemporary synthesis

    Frontiers in Communication
  • Zullo A., Simone E., Grimaldi M., Gagliardi M., Zullo L.iit, Matarazzo M.R., Mancini F.P.
    DOI

    Effect of nutrient deprivation on the expression and the epigenetic signature of sirtuin genes

    Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases, vol. 28, (no. 4), pp. 418-424
  • 2017
  • Zullo L.iit, Fossati S.M.iit, Imperadore P., Nodl M.-T.iit
    DOI

    Molecular determinants of cephalopod muscles and their implication in muscle regeneration

    Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology, vol. 5, (no. MAY)
  • Zullo L.iit, Imperadore P.

    Regeneration and healing

    Handbook of Pathogens and diseases in european cephalopods
  • 2016
  • Kang R.iit, Guglielmino E.iit, Zullo L.iit, Branson D.T., Godage I., Caldwell D.G.iit
    DOI

    Embodiment design of soft continuum robots

    Advances in Mechanical Engineering, vol. 8, (no. 4), pp. 1-13
  • Levy G., Nesher N., Zullo L.iit, Hochner B.

    Motor control in soft bodied animals – the octopus

    The ‘Oxford Handbook of Invertebrate Neurobiology”, Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Zullo L.iit

    Otto braccia, tre cuori e un grande cervello: il Polpo tra mito e scienza

    Un Mare di Scienza, Publisher: De Ferrari Editore e Genova University Press.
  • 2015
  • Di Cosmo A., Bertapelle C., Polese G., Zullo L.iit, Palumbo A.

    Cefalopodi

    Benessere ed animal care dell’animale da laboratorio’., Publisher: Point Veterinaire Italie srl.
  • Fossati S.M.iit, Candiani S., Nodl M.-T.iit, Maragliano L.iit, Pennuto M.iit, Domingues P., Benfenati F.iit, Pestarino M., Zullo L.iit
    DOI

    Identification and Expression of Acetylcholinesterase in Octopus vulgaris Arm Development and Regeneration: a Conserved Role for ACHE?

    Molecular Neurobiology, vol. 52, (no. 1), pp. 45-56
  • Nodl M.-T.iit, Fossati S.M.iit, Domingues P., Sanchez F.J., Zullo L.iit
    DOI

    The making of an octopus arm

    EvoDevo, vol. 6, (no. 1)
  • 2014
  • Fiorito G., Affuso A., Anderson D.B., Basil J., Bonnaud L., Botta G., Cole A., D'Angelo L., De Girolamo P., Dennison N., Dickel L., Di Cosmo A., Di Cristo C., Gestal C., Fonseca R., Grasso F., Kristiansen T., Kuba M., Maffucci F., Manciocco A., Mark F.C., Melillo D., Osorio D., Palumbo A., Perkins K., Ponte G., Raspa M., Shashar N., Smith J., Smith D., Sykes A., Villanueva R., Tublitz N., Zullo L.iit, Andrews P.
    DOI

    Cephalopods in neuroscience: Regulations, research and the 3Rs

    Invertebrate Neuroscience, vol. 14, (no. 1), pp. 13-36
  • 2013
  • Guglielmino E.iit, Godage I.iit, Zullo L.iit, Caldwell D.G.iit
    DOI

    A pragmatic bio-inspired approach to the design of octopus-inspired arms

    IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, pp. 4577-4582
  • Fossati S.M.iit, Carella F., De Vico G., Benfenati F.iit, Zullo L.iit
    DOI

    Octopus arm regeneration: Role of acetylcholinesterase during morphological modification

    Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, vol. 447, pp. 93-99
  • 2012
  • Zullo L.iit, Chiappalone M.iit, Martinoia S.iit, Benfenati F.iit
    DOI

    A "Spike-Based" Grammar Underlies Directional Modification in Network Connectivity: Effect on Bursting Activity and Implications for Bio-Hybrids Systems

    PLoS ONE, vol. 7, (no. 11)
  • Guglielmino E.iit, Zullo L.iit, Cianchetti M., Follador M., Branson D.iit, Caldwell D.G.iit
    DOI

    The application of embodiment theory to the design and control of an octopus-like robotic arm

    Proceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, pp. 5277-5282
  • 2011
  • Zullo L.iit, Hochner B.

    A new perspective on the organization of an invertebrate brain

    Communicative and Integrative Biology, vol. 4, (no. 1), pp. 1-4
  • Fossati S.iit, Benfenati F.iit, Zullo L.iit

    Morphological characterization of the Octopus vulgaris arm

    Vie et Milieu, vol. 61, (no. 4), pp. 191-195
  • Zullo L.iit, Fossati S.M.iit, Benfenati F.iit

    Transmission of sensory responses in the peripheral nervous system of the arm of Octopus vulgaris

    Vie et Milieu, vol. 61, (no. 4), pp. 197-201
  • 2009
  • Zullo L.iit, Sumbre G., Agnisola C., Flash T., Hochner B.
    DOI

    Nonsomatotopic Organization of the Higher Motor Centers in Octopus

    Current Biology, vol. 19, (no. 19), pp. 1632-1636
  • 2006
  • Kuba M.J., Zullo L.iit, Byrne R.A., Hochner B.

    Visual habituation in the common octopus (Octopus vulgaris)

    Acta Universitatis Carolinae - Geologica, vol. 49, (no. 1-4), pp. 141-144