Consorzio Interuniversitario per lo sviluppo dei Sistemi a Grande Interfase
Center for Colloid and Surface Science

Personal information

Position: Permanent Staff



Location: Catania

Fields of Interest and Expertise

Biological control and land management to control plant diseases.

Differential expression of genes of these fungi in presence of xenobiotics and in the plant –pathogen interactions.

Study of the genetic variability and molecular diagnosis of oomycetes and fungal pathogens.




Malattie del post-raccolta (University of Messina)Study of the genetic variability and molecular diagnosis of oomycetes and fungal pathogens

Patologia Vegetale (University of Catania)

Environmental Plant Pathology (University of Catania)



Curriculum Vitae

1980: degree in Biological Science at the University of Catania (110 cum laude). Thesis on Biochemistry: “Effetti della vitamina D3 sulla fluidità delle membrane mitocondriali”.

1982-1983: “Roche Foundation” fellowship carried out a research project on red cell transport at the Institut fur Biochemie (University of Bern, Switzerland). Supervisor: Prof. Peter Zahler.

1984 - 1986: “Post-doctoral fellow” at the Department of Biology of the Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, U.S.A., with a fellowship funded by the “National Institute of Health”. Supervisor: Prof. Saul Roseman.

1987 – 1989: Ph.D. in Plant Pathology, University of Bari. Thesis on “Attività pectolitica di Phoma tracheiphila (Petri) Kanc. & Ghik.” Tutor: Prof.Antonio Graniti

1991 – 1997: Researcher in Plant Pathology at the Agricultural Faculty, University of Catania

1997; 1999-2001: Stages as Visiting researcher at the “l’Institute de Genetique et Microbiologie”, Université Paris-Sud (Francia) in collaboration with Proff. C. Scazzocchio e M.J. Daboussi.

1998 – 2008: Associate Professor in Plant Pathology at the Agricultural Faculty of the University of Palermo.

1 Marzo 2008 – 31 Ottobre 2011: Associate Professor in Plant Pathology at the Institute of Biological chemistry, medical chemistry and molecular biology, Faculty of Pharmacy (later Department of ‘Scienze del Farmaco’), University of Catania.

1 Novembre 2011 - 31 Ottobre 2014: Associate Professor in Plant Pathology at the Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment (previously “Dipartimento di Gestione dei Sistemi Agroalimentari e Ambientali”, University of Catania.



"TOP SCIENTIST" (2005-2009) in the “Area 07 - Agricultural and Veterinary Science” (researchers, associate professors and full professors) ranking of the University of Catania. Special awards: additional funds by the University of Catania (euro 10.000).

VQR (“Agenzia Nazionale di Valutazione del Sistema Universitario e della Ricerca”: National Agency of the Evaluation of University and Research) Evaluation period: 2004-2010 and 2011-2014. Score of the evaluated research products: 1 (Excellent).

U.S. FULBRIGHT Lecturers and Research Scholars to Italy - A.Y. 2017-18, AWARDING OF THE FULBRIGHT GRANT (Hosting Partner)




Stilbocrea banihashemiana sp. nov. a New Fungal Pathogen Causing Stem Cankers and Twig Dieback of Fruit Trees

- Bolboli Z. - Tavakolian B. - Mostowfizadeh-Ghalamfarsa R. - Jafari M. - Santa Olga Cacciola
Journal of Fungi

Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification (LAMP) and SYBR Green qPCR for Fast and Reliable Detection of Geosmithia morbida (Kolařik) in Infected Walnut

- Rizzo D. - Aglietti C. - Benigno A. - Bracalini M. - Da Lio D. - Bartolini L. - Cappellini G. - Aronadio A. - Francia C. - Luchi N. - Santini A. - Santa Olga Cacciola - Panzavolta T. - Moricca S.

Fusarium and Neocosmospora Species Associated with Rot of Cactaceae and Other Succulent Plants

- Kamali-Sarvestani S. - Mostowfizadeh-Ghalamfarsa R. - Salmaninezhad F. - Santa Olga Cacciola
Journal of Fungi

Phytophthora root and collar rot of Paulownia, a new disease for Europe

- Aloi F. - Riolo M. - La Spada F. - Bentivenga G. - Moricca S. - Santilli E. - Pane A. - Faedda R. - Santa Olga Cacciola

Phytophthora heterospora sp. Nov., a new pseudoconidia-producing sister species of p. palmivora

- Scanu B. - Jung T. - Masigol H. - Linaldeddu B.T. - Jung M.H. - Brandano A. - Mostowfizadeh-Ghalamfarsa R. - Janoušek J. - Riolo M. - Santa Olga Cacciola
Journal of Fungi

Inhibitory activity of shrimp waste extracts on fungal and oomycete plant pathogens

- El Boumlasy S. - La Spada F. - Nunzio Tuccitto - Giovanni Marletta - Mínguez C.L. - Meca G. - Rovetto E.I. - Pane A. - Debdoubi A. - Santa Olga Cacciola

Population structure of Phytophthora infestans collected on potato and tomato in Italy

- Saville A.C. - La Spada F. - Faedda R. - Migheli Q. - Scanu B. - Ermacora P. - Gilardi G. - Fedele G. - Rossi V. - Lenzi N. - Testa A. - Bechir Allagui M. - Moumni M. - Dongiovanni E. - Zohra Rekad F. - Cooke D.E.L. - Pane A. - Santa Olga Cacciola - Ristaino J.B.
Plant Pathology

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