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School of Mathematical Sciences

Miss Elisa Scanu


Postgraduate Research Student

Room Number: Mathematical Sciences Building, Room: MB-402


Before joining Queen Mary University, Elisa studied in “La Sapienza” University of Rome, Italy, where she graduated (both BSc and MSc) in Applied Mathematics with the highest marks, and she spent a semester in Queen Mary University as an Erasmus+ student. She is also working in “Tuscia” University of Viterbo, Italy, as a contract teacher for first-year modules in Mathematics.

The title of Elisa's project is “Modelling ecDNA dynamics in human cells” and it is developed under the supervision of Dr. Weini Huang and Dr. Benjamin Werner. The aim of this project is to use stochastic models based on simple mechanistic assumptions to explain observed patterns in human cells, including healthy tissues and tumours. The team would try to fit experimental and clinical data of genetic information into new predictive mathematical models which, for example, could calculate the expected frequency distributions of genetic errors, the expected incidence of cells which express mutations macroscopically, the behaviour of cells populations which are affected from a specific disease. 

Elisa and her supervisors wish to provide to medical research previsions about connections between the presence of a specific type of extra-chromosomal DNA and the incidence of some diseases or epigenetic traits.

The project is done in cooperation with Barts Cancer Institute of the School of Medicine and Dentistry in Queen Mary University of London.


Research Interests:

Evolutionary theory, Cancer modeling, Biomathematics