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Blizard Institute - Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry

Daniele Bergamaschi, BSc, PhD


Non clinical Senior Lecturer

Centre: Cell Biology and Cutaneous Research

Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7882 2567


After his BSc in Biological Science at the University of Milan in 1994, Daniele studied Cancer Pharmacology at a postgraduate level (PhD equivalent) at the Mario Negri Institute of Pharmacological Research in Milan until 1998. He then moved to London, where he worked as a postdoctoral research fellow in the tumor suppressor lab at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research (Imperial and UCL branches respectively). In November 2005, Daniele was appointed as a Lecturer at the Centre for Cell Biology and Cutaneous Research, at the Blizard Institute and promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2009. In July 2020, he was elected as chair of the British Society of Investigative Dermatology (BSID).

Centre: Cell Biology and Cutaneous Research

Research Group: The Autophagy Group



SBCS: BIO116 -The Human cells: Course Lecturer

SBCS: First-year Laboratory practical: Academic Coordinator

SBCS: Third-year project Supervisor

SBCS: Third-year project skills Life Sciences Supervisor

MBBS: Year 1 and Year 2 Problem Based Learning Facilitator

MBBS: SCC2a and SSC4 Programmes Supervisor

MBBS: Year 4 Intercalated BSc in Experimental Pathology Supervisor


MSc Regenerative Medicine

Module Lead: ICMM132 Research Skills and Methodology, MSc Regenerative Medicine

Project Supervisor: MSc Regenerative Medicine

PhD Supervisor


Research Interests:

Current ongoing lines of research in my lab:

  1. Integrity of the autophagy signalling pathway in epidermis and skin diseases
  2. Genetic and Epigenetic autophagy regulation in cutaneous SCC
  3. Drug-resistance (MAPK-inhibitors-resistance) mechanisms in melanoma

See research group members

Integrity of the autophagy signalling pathway in epidermis and skin diseases

Macroautophagy is a self-degradative process vital for maintaining cellular homeostasis in response to stress. We have recently shown how autophagy supports epidermal stratification and differentiation and its involvement with nuclear degradation. We are further characterizing the role of this process in normal epidermis and investigating how mechanistically impairment of this process can contributes to the pathogenesis of chronic inflammatory skin diseases as well as skin aging.

Genetic and Epigenetic autophagy regulation in cutaneous SCC

While in normal cells autophagy is involved in protective and survival mechanisms, recent evidence points to a link between defects in the autophagy pathway and cancer development. The role of autophagy in cutaneous SCC is currently unclear: a comprehensive analysis of the key molecular autophagic players have not been performed yet, as well as the assessment of the autophagic flux integrity in cutaneous SCC lineage. Our research aims to investigate the impact of different types of mutations in several autophagy genes. Our studies will establish how deregulation of this signalling pathway can affect early stages of tumorigenesis as well as cutaneous SCC cancer progression.

Drug-resistance (MAPK-inhibitors-resistance) mechanisms in melanoma

In the last 10 years my main research interest has been investigating the molecular signalling of apoptotic resistance of melanocytes during malignant progression. We have been tried to understand the physiological roles of key players involved in different types of cell death in melanoma cells, with special regard to the p53 family members signalling pathways somehow altered in melanomas. We have been characterizing the role of p63 in melanoma and, more recently how p63 is involved in MAPK inhibitors resistance often reported in melanoma patients target therapies. Our established drug-resistance models will allow us to further investigate how the p63 signalling is regulated by tumour microenvironment.

Research Group

PhD students

  • Nazia Begum Uddin (Psoriasis Association)
  • Christos Ermogenous (MRC-DTP) 


  • Dr Rubeta NH Matin
  • Dr Valentina Senatore
  • Dr Nabil Hajji
  • Dr Corina Tudor
  • Dr Anissa Chick
  • Dr Paolo Sanza
  • Manuela Graf
  • Dr Folake Akinduro
  • Dr Deborah J Robinson
  • Dr Ankitkumar Patel
  • Tiffanie-Marie Borg
  • Lucia Fraile Garcia


Key Publications

Patel A, Garcia LF, Mannella V, Gammon L, Borg TM, Maffucci T, Scatolini M, Chiorino G, Vergani E, Rodolfo M, Maurichi A, Posch C, Matin RN, Harwood CA, Bergamaschi D. Targeting p63 Upregulation Abrogates Resistance to MAPK Inhibitors in Melanoma. Cancer Res. 2020 Jun 15;80(12):2676-2688.

Robinson DJ, Patel A, Purdie KJ, Wang J, Rizvi H, Hufbauer M, Ostano P, Akgül B, Chiorino G, Harwood C, Bergamaschi D. Epigenetic regulation of iASPP-p63 feedback loop in cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. J Invest Dermatol. 2019;139(8):1658-71.

Akinduro O, Sully K, Patel A, Robinson DJ, Chikh A, McPhail G, Braun KM, Philpott MP, Harwood CA, Byrne C, O'Shaughnessy RF & Bergamaschi D. Constitutive autophagy and nucleophagy during epidermal differentiation. J Invest Dermatol 2016;136(7):1460-70.

Chikh A, Sanzà P, Raimondi C, Akinduro O, Warnes G, Chiorino G, Byrne C, Harwood CA, Bergamaschi D. iASPP is a novel autophagy inhibitor in keratinocytes. J Cell Sci. 2014;127(14):3079-93.

Matin RN, Chikh A, Chong SL, Mesher D, Graf M, Sanza' P, Senatore V, Scatolini M, Moretti F, Leigh IM, Proby CM, Costanzo A, Chiorino G, Cerio R, Harwood CA, Bergamaschi D. p63 is an alternative p53 repressor in melanoma that confers chemoresistance and a poor prognosis. J Exp Med. 2013;210(3):581-603.

All Publications



  • Nazia Uddin


  • Lisa Coppock
  • Duncan Wotherspoon

Previous Supervision

  • Komal Guirdar
  • Ishrath Iman
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