Dr. De Nicolo received her M.D. from the University of Bari and her Ph.D. in Oncology and Surgical Oncology from the University of Padua. Then, she moved to Boston, MA, USA, where she trained as a Research Fellow in Genetics at Harvard Medical School and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (Prof. David M. Livingston) and subsequently held a Faculty position (Instructor in Medicine) at Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. In Boston, Dr. De Nicolo’s research was primarily focused on elucidating the biological significance of sequence alterations in breast and/or ovarian cancer genes and gaining insights into the similarities between sporadic and hereditary, BRCA1-mutated, triple negative breast cancer. In addition, Dr. De Nicolo substantially contributed to the discovery of a novel mechanism of activation of the two major mitotic kinases, Aurora A and Plk1, and to the elucidation of a signaling cascade underlying mitotic centrosome and bipolar spindle assembly. She also participated in several collaborative projects on triple negative breast cancer, including a pilot clinical trial that tested the efficacy of neoadjuvant cisplatin. In 2016, Dr. De Nicolo joined the Veneto Institute of Oncology IRCCS with the goal of pursuing interdisciplinary translational research. Since her relocation to Italy, in addition to continuing her studies on breast/ovarian cancer predisposition, Dr. De Nicolo has expanded her scientific horizon to include research on hereditary and sporadic melanoma and on other hereditary cancer syndromes. She coordinates national and international collaborative networks of centers dedicated to genetic testing for cancer predisposition, maintains collaborations with her former colleagues, and serves as a USA-Europe liaison scientist for the Scientific Directorate.

Cancer genomics program
Scientific Directorate
Researcher in staff

Areas of interest

Genetic susceptibility to cancer; genetic variants of uncertain significance (VUS); overlapping and atypical phenotypes; molecular mechanisms of carcinogenesis; cell division and DNA repair; protein kinases and cell signaling.

IOV press

Selected references (last 3 years)

  • Joukov V and De Nicolo A. The centrosome and the primary cilium: the yin and yang of a hybrid organelle. Review. Cells 2019;8(7):E701. Review.
  • Parsons MT, Tudini E, Li H, Hahnen E, Wappenschmidt B, Feliubadaló L, Aalfs CM, Agata S, Aittomäki K, Alducci E, Alonso-Cerezo MC, Arnold N, Auber B, Austin R, Azzollini J, Balmaña J, Barbieri E, Bartram CR, Blanco A, Blümcke B, Bonache S, Bonanni B, Borg Å, Bortesi B, Brunet J, Bruzzone C, Bucksch K, Cagnoli G, Caldés T, Caliebe A, Caligo MA, Calvello M, Capone GL, Caputo S, Carnevali I, Carrasco E, Caux-Moncoutier V, Cavalli P, Cini G, Clarke EM, Concolino P, Cops EJ, Cortesi L, Couch FJ, Darder E, de la Hoya M, Dean M, Debatin I, Del Valle J, Delnatte C, Derive N, Diez O, Ditsch N, Domchek SM, Dutrannoy V, Eccles DM, Ehrencrona H, Enders U, Evans DG, Faust U, Felbor U, Feroce I, Fine M, Galvao HCR, Gambino G, Gehrig A, Gensini F, Gerdes AM, Germani A, Giesecke J, Gismondi V, Gómez C, Gómez Garcia EB, González S, Grau E, Grill S, Gross E, Guerrieri-Gonzaga A, Guillaud-Bataille M, Gutiérrez-Enríquez S, Haaf T, Hackmann K, Hansen TVO, Harris M, Hauke J, Heinrich T, Hellebrand H, Herold KN, Honisch E, Horvath J, Houdayer C, Hübbel V, Iglesias S, Izquierdo A, James PA, Janssen LAM, Jeschke U, Kaulfuß S, Keupp K, Kiechle M, Kölbl A, Krieger S, Kruse TA, Kvist A, Lalloo F, Larsen M, Lattimore VL, Lautrup C, Ledig S, Leinert E, Lewis AL, Lim J, Loeffler M, Lopez-Fernández A, Lucci-Cordisco E, Maass N, Manoukian S, Marabelli M, Matricardi L, Meindl A, Michelli RD, Moghadasi S, Moles-Fernández A, Montagna M, Montalban G, Monteiro AN, Montes E, Mori L, Moserle L, Müller CR, Mundhenke C, Naldi N, Nathanson KL, Navarro M, Nevanlinna H, Nichols CB, Niederacher D, Nielsen HR, Ong KR, Pachter N, Palmero EI, Papi L, Pedersen IS, Peissel B, Pérez-Segura P, Pfeifer K, Pineda M, Pohl-Rescigno E, Poplawski NK, Porfirio B, Quante AS, Ramser J, Reis RM, Revillion F, Rhiem K, Riboli B, Ritter J, Rivera D, Rofes P, Rump A, Salinas M, Sánchez de Abajo AM, Schmidt G, Schoenwiese U, Seggewiß J, Solanes A, Steinemann D, Stiller M, Stoppa-Lyonnet D, Sullivan KJ, Susman R, Sutter C, Tavtigian SV, Teo SH, Teulé A, Thomassen M, Tibiletti MG, Tognazzo S, Toland AE, Tornero E, Törngren T, Torres-Esquius S, Toss A, Trainer AH, van Asperen CJ, van Mackelenbergh MT, Varesco L, Vargas-Parra G, Varon R, Vega A, Velasco Á, Vesper AS, Viel A, Vreeswijk MPG, Wagner SA, Waha A, Walker LC, Walters RJ, Wang-Gohrke S, Weber BHF, Weichert W, Wieland K, Wiesmüller L, Witzel I, Wöckel A, Woodward ER, Zachariae S, Zampiga V, Zeder-Göß C, KConFab Investigators, Lázaro C, De Nicolo A, Radice P, Engel C, Schmutzler RK, Goldgar DE, Spurdle AB. Large scale multifactorial likelihood analysis of BRCA1 and BRCA2 variants: An ENIGMA resource to support clinical variant classification. Hum Mutat 2019;40(9):1557-1578.
  • Stratigos AJ*, Fargnoli MC*, De Nicolo A*, Peris K, Puig S, Soura E, Menin C, Calista D, Ghiorzo P, Mandalà M, Massi D, Rodolfo M, Del Regno L, Stefanaki I, Gogas H, Bataille V, Tucker MA, Whiteman D, Nagore E, Landi MT. ΜelanoQ: a consensus questionnaire of standardized epidemiologic and clinical variables for melanoma risk assessment by the MelaNostrum Consortium. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol 2018;32(12):2134-41. *Equal contribution and shared first authorship.
  • Nielsen SM, Eccles DM, Romero I, Al-Mulla F, Biancolella M, Blok R, Caligo MA, Calvello M, Capone GL, Cavalli P, Chan TLC, Claes KBM, Cortesi L, Couch FJ, de la Hoya M, De Toffol S, Diez O, Domchek SM, Eeles R, Efremidis A, Fostira F, Goldgar D, Hadjisavvas M, Hansen TvO, Hirasawa A, Houdayer C, Kleiblova P, Krieger S, Lázaro C, Louizidou M, Manoukian S, Mensenkamp AR, Moghadasi S, Monteiro AN, Mori L, Morrow A, Naldi N, Nielsen HR, Olopade OI, Pachter NS, Palmero EI, Pedersen IS, Piane M, Puzzo M, Robson M, Rossing M, Sini MC, Solano A, Soukupova J, Tedaldi G, Teixeira M, Thomassen M, Tibiletti MG, Toland A, Törngren T, Vaccari E, Varesco L, Vega A, Wallis Y, Wappenschmidt B, Weitzel J, Spurdle AB, De Nicolo A, Gómez-García EB. Genetic testing and clinical management practices for variants in non-BRCA1/2 breast (and breast/ovarian) cancer susceptibility genes: an international survey by the Evidence-based Network for the Interpretation of Germline Mutant Alleles (ENIGMA) Clinical Working Group. JCO Precis Oncol 2018;2. doi: 10.1200/PO.18.00091. Epub 2018 Oct 26.
  • Gu F, Chen TH, Pfeiffer RM, Fargnoli MC, Calista D, Ghiorzo P, Peris K, Puig S, Menin C, De Nicolo A, Rodolfo M, Pellegrini C, Pastorino L, Evangelou E, Zhang T, Hua X, Della Valle CT, Bishop DT, MacGregor S, Iles MI, Law MH, Cust A, Brown KM, Stratigos AJ, Nagore E, Chanock S, Shi J, Melanoma Meta-Analysis Consortium, MelaNostrum Consortium, Landi MT. Combining common genetic variants and non-genetic risk factors to predict risk of cutaneous melanoma. Hum Mol Genet 2018;27(23):4145-56.
  • Joukov V and De Nicolo A. Aurora-PLK1 cascades as key signaling modules in the regulation of mitosis. Sci Signal 2018;11(543). Review. Cover story.
  • Stagni C, Zamuner C, Elefanti L, Zanin T, Del Bianco P, Sommariva A, Fabozzi A, Pigozzo J, Mocellin S, Montesco MC, Chiarion-Sileni V, De Nicolo A§, Menin C§. BRAF gene copy number and mutant allele frequency correlate with time to progression in metastatic melanoma patients treated with MAPK inhibitors. Mol Cancer Ther 2018;17(6):1332-40. §Shared senior authorship.