Prof.ssa Irene Cantone – “Understanding Sex-Bias in Autoimmune diseases by Human X Chromosome Inactivation”

IGB Seminar 3 Giugno 2024 - Cantone

Irene Cantone, PhD
Group Leader Assistant Professor
Department of Molecular Medicine and Medical Biotechnology
Universita’ Federico II di Napoli


Dr Cantone is an expert of transcription regulation and epigenetics. She did her PhD studies within the field of system and synthetic biology focused on establishing a synthetic network for In Vivo Reverse-engineering and Modelling Assessment (IRMA). IRMA has been the first synthetic network built in eukaryotes to benchmark computational tools aimed at reconstructing gene regulatory networks and predicting behaviour in untested conditions (Cantone et al., Cell 2009). For her postdoc she was awarded Marie-Curie, EMBO and HFSP long-term fellowships to move at the MRC London institute of Medical Sciences (London, UK) and investigate the epigenetic mechanisms underlying human pluripotent reprogramming. In particular, she has used X chromosome inactivation to disentangle the relationship between different steps of chromatin remodeling and gene reactivation. She discovered that the de-localization of XIST RNA from the inactive X chromosome (Xi) is a first necessary event for transcriptional reactivation of several loci along the Xi (Cantone et al., Nature Comm 2016). In addition, she established a method for allele-specific RNA sequencing in clonal populations to investigate the extent of Xi gene reactivation and, suggested that partial Xi reactivation is caused by stochastic transcriptional events might arise and be stabilized throughout cell divisions upon loss of XIST and repressive chromatin marks (Cantone* et al., Genome Biol, 2017 – corresponding author). She had a career break due to maternity (3 months) and sickness from Oct 2016- Sept 2019. Since October 2019, she has established her independent group at the University of Naples Federico II thanks to a career development award of the Italian Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis (FISM). Dr Cantone lab investigates human epigenetic reprogramming and, in particular, the mechanisms underlying the transcription of genes on the human inactive X chromosome and their impact on the pathogenesis of X-linked and sex biased autoimmune diseases.

  • 00


  • 00


  • 00


  • 00



Jun 03 2024


12:00 - 13:30


Sala Convegni “Roberto Vaccaro”
Via Pietro Castellino 111


Marcella Vacca
081 6132 702