National Research Council of Italy

Institute of Biosciences and BioResources

DISBA logo CNR logo

Daniela Giordano

Role: Researcher
Section: Researchers and Technologists
Division: Naples
Tel: (39) 081-6132541-081-6132574



-From September 2011. Researcher, National Research Council (CNR), Naples

-February 2007- May 2011. Post-doc CNR

-2004-2007. PhD, Univ Sacro Cuore, Rome.

-July 2003. Member of the National Registry of Pharmacists

-2002. Degree in Pharmaceutical Chemistry cum laude, Univ Federico II, Naples.

-1997. Classical High School Degree with maximum rating

Research experience

-Participant in TUNU-IV, an East Greenland research cruise (Aug 2010)

-Visiting Scientist: 1. Univ of Buenos Aires (Nov 2011); 2. National Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM), Paris, France, (Jan 2010; Oct -Nov, 2008; Jun - Jul, 2008; Mar 2007); 3. Univ of Antwerp, Belgium (Oct-Nov 2009); 4. Northeastern Univ, Boston, USA (Nov 2005-May 2006).


-Coordinator of the project “Cosmeceuticals And Nutraceuticals From Antarctic Biological REsources (CAN FARE)”, approved by PNRA (National Programme of Research in Antarctica), 2017-2019

-Research Unit leader of the project “Response of Antarctic notothenioids to thermal stress: an integrated molecular approach to investigate the effects of increasing temperatures in Trematomus bernacchii and Chionodraco hamatus” approved by PNRA, 2013-2015

-Coordinator of the project “PROP09_102” (for young researchers), 2009-2010 “Structural and functional characterisation of neuroglobin of Antarctic fish”, funded by PNRA

Invited/Selected speaker

  1. XX International Conference on O2-Binding and Sensing Proteins, Barcelona, Spain (September 3-6, 2018);
  2. XII SCAR International Biology Symposium, Leuven, Belgium (July 10-14, 2017);
  3. XVIII International Conference on O2-Binding and Sensing Proteins, Sheffield, UK (July 6-

10, 2014);

  1. XVII International Conference on O2-Binding and Sensing Proteins, Parma (Aug 29-Sept 1, 2012);
  2. CAREX Conference on Life in Extreme Environments, Dublin, Ireland (Oct 18-20, 2011);
  3. XVI International Conference on O2-Binding and Sensing Proteins, Antwerp, Belgium (Aug 22-26, 2010);
  4. Workshop “Polar Marine and Lacustrine Organisms: Gene and Protein Evolution in a Changing Environment”, Naples (May 24-25, 2010);
  5. X SCAR International Biology Symposium, Sapporo, Japan (Jul 26-31, 2009); Early Career


-2020. Evaluation of COVID-19 projects in cooperation with MIUR Reprise

-2020. Evaluation of University Research Fellowships of the Royal Society, UK

-2019. Evaluation of Joint Projects 2019, University of Verona, in cooperation with Cineca

-2019. Evaluation of Junior post-doc positions, University of Insubria, in cooperation with MIUR Reprise

-2018-2019. Evaluation for the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science

-2017-2023. Evaluation of PON projects (Sustainable Industry- Biotechnology) for the Italian Ministry of Economic Development (MISE) in the Programme 2014-2020 FESR

Reviewer for international journals:

Scientific Reports, Brain research, FEMS Microbiology letters, PlosOne, Marine Genomics, BMC Evolutionary Biology, ESPR-Environmental science and pollution research, Molecules, Polar Biology, AJP-Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology, African Journal of Biotechnology

Guest Editor

-Special Issue of Marine Drugs 2020/2021 “Bioactive Molecules from Extreme Environments II”, Deadline: 31 March 2021

-Special Issue of Marine Drugs 2019/2020 “Bioactive Molecules from Extreme Environments”, Deadline: 30 April 2020

-Special Issue of Biodiversity 2016 “Evolution and Biodiversity in Polar Regions-Molecular and Genetic Advances” Vol 17, n 1-2, March-June 2016

Associated researcher to Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn of Naples since 2016

Scientific dissemination for schools

-2020, January 31 - “Le biotecnologie degli estremofili per la salute e per l’ambiente”- Istituto Statale di istruzione Superiore «Einaudi -Giordano» -San Giuseppe Vesuviano (NA)

-2019, November 22 - FUTURO REMOTO 2019-ESSERE 4.0 evoluzione di cultura, scienza e tecnologie al servizio dell’uomo

-2019, September 26 - European Biotech Week: RicerchiAMO: la scienza in azione IV edizione

-2019, March 26 - LA SCUOLA VA AL CNR: Visita formativa e di orientamento degli alunni dell’IIS SIANI, dell’IISS “CASELLI-DE SANCTIS e del LS GALILEI di Napoli

-2018, September 28 - European Biotech Week: Dagli ambienti estremi le biotecnologie del futuro

-2016, October 9 - FUTURO REMOTO 2016- Terra madre: clima, energia e ambiente

-2011, May 16, -Festival della Scienza: la Genetica a Napoli-Alla Scoperta dei Poli: la Vita ai Confini della Terra

-2010, November 5 - Festival della Scienza, Genova: Nave rompighiaccio all’orizzonte. L’Europa e la sfida tecnologica e scientifica del futuro

Research interests

Our overall aim is to compare the evolutionary globin adaptations to cold environment in a range of organisms (fish and bacteria) and provide the most robust assessment of structure/function relationships in cold-adapted hemoproteins, identifying their involvement in the oxidative and nitrosative stress. In the study of cold adaptation, the oxygen-transport system is a source of invaluable information. The traditional view of the exclusive role of hemoglobin as oxygen carrier in vertebrates is now overcome. The globin superfamily is exceptionally flexible in terms of biological roles. Globins are ancestral and have been found in bacteria, fungi, plants, etc, and serve many roles.

In new research lines we are taking advantage of biodiversity of marine polar organisms for the development of novel bioactive compounds as valuable industrial products (nutraceutics, cosmeticeuticals). This is in view of the recent expansion in the diagnosis of genetic and life-style related diseases, and the increased interest in finding new products aimed at improving human well-being by treating these diseases.

Current Projects

Main projects are:

-Structure, function and evolution of hemoglobins in polar fish: Characterisation of Antarctic/Arctic fish hemoglobins. Biochemical characterisation by classical techniques (cromatography, electrophoresis, immunochemical techniques, i.e. Western Blotting and ELISA; aminoacid sequencing, enzymatic and chemical modifications of proteins). Structural characterisation by absorption spectroscopy. Measurements of oxygen affinity by diffusion chamber. Bioinformatic analysis by multiple sequence alignment and phylogenetic and evolutionary analysis. Polymerisation of fish hemoglobins

-Structure, function and evolution of monomeric globins in polar fish and bacteria: 2/2 hemoglobins and flavohemoglobins of the Antarctic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis TAC125; Antarctic fish neuroglobins, cytoglobins, androglobins and globin X; Gene expression of globins from Antarctic fish and bacteria. Cloning, expression, purification and structural/functional characterisation of globins. Construction of site-specific mutants. Spectroscopic characterisation UV-Vis at atmospheric and high pressure, kinetic and thermodynamic characterisation of protein-ligand interactions (laser flash photolysis and circular dichroism). Techniques of molecular biology, real-time RT-PCR.

-Neurodegeneration versus Neuroprotection: Role of estrogen-induced neuroglobin expression: Cloning, expression and purification of human neuroglobin; Neuroglobin gene expression in human neuroblastoma cell lines during oxidative stress.

-Identification of novel marine bioactive compounds, potentially valuable for many applications such as nutritional supplements and cosmeceuticals: Screening of marine polar and mediterranean samples by biological assays for nutraceutic and cosmetic properties using in vitro selected human cell lines; Isolation and characterisation of bioactive molecules by chromatographic, spectroscopic and spectrometric methods, mainly MS and NMR.

Useful links:

PNRA, Italian National Programme for Antarctic Research,

SCAR, Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research,

AnT-ERA, Antarctic Thresholds - Ecosystem Resilience and Adaptation


  1. Núñez-Pons L, Shilling A, Verde C, Baker BJ, Giordano D (2020) Marine terpenoids from polar latitudes and their potential applications in biotechnology. Mar Drugs, 18, 401
  2. Giordano D, Pesce A, Vermeylen S, Abbruzzetti S, Nardini M, Marchesani F, Berghmans H, Seira C, Bruno S, Javier Luque F, di Prisco G, Ascenzi P, Dewilde S, Bolognesi M, Viappiani C, Verde C (2020) Structural and functional properties of Antarctic fish cytoglobins-1: Cold-reactivity in multi-ligand reactions. Comput Struct Biotechnol J, 18:2132-2144
  3. Giordano D, Boubeta FM, di Prisco G, Estrin DA, Smulevich G, Viappiani C, Verde C (2019) Conformational flexibility drives cold adaptation in Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis TAC125 globins. Antioxid Redox Signal 32(6), 396-411
  4. Daane JM, Giordano D, Coppola D, di Prisco G, Detrich HW 3rd, Verde C (2019) Adaptations to environmental change: Globin superfamily evolution in Antarctic fishes. Mar Genomics 49:100724
  5. Bruno S, Coppola D, di Prisco G, Giordano D, Verde C (2019) Enzymes from marine polar regions and their biotechnological applications. Mar Drugs 17(10), 544
  6. Núñez-Pons L, Avila C, Romano G, Verde C, Giordano D (2018) UV-protective compounds in marine organisms from the Southern Ocean. Mar Drugs 16(9), E336.
  7. Boubeta FM, Boechi L, Estrin D, Patrizi B, Di Donato M, Iagatti A, Giordano D, Verde C, Bruno S, Abbruzzetti S, Viappiani C (2018) Cold-adaptation signatures in the ligand rebinding kinetics to the truncated hemoglobin of the Antarctic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis J Phys Chem B in press
  8. Giordano D, Costantini M, Coppola D, Lauritano C, Núñez Pons L, Ruocco N, di Prisco G, Ianora A, Verde C (2018) Biotechnological applications of bioactive peptides from marine sources. Adv Microb Physiol 73, 171-220
  9. Coppola D, Giordano D, Milazzo L, Howes BD, Ascenzi P, di Prisco G, Smulevich G, Poole RK, Verde C (2018) Coexistence of multiple globin genes conferring protection against nitrosative stress to the Antarctic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis Nitric Oxide 73, 39-51
  10. Russo R, Giordano D, Paredi G, Marchesani F, Milazzo L, Altomonte G, Del Canale P, Abbruzzetti S, Ascenzi P, di Prisco G, Viappiani C, Fago A, Bruno S, Smulevich G, Verde C (2017) The Greenland shark Somniosus microcephalus-Hemoglobins and ligand-binding properties. PLoS One 12(10), e0186181.
  11. Cuypers B, Vermeylen S, Hammerschmid D, Trashin S, Rahemi V, Konijnenberg A, De Schutter A, Cheng CC, Giordano D, Verde C, De Wael K, Sobott F, Dewilde S, Van Doorslaer S (2017) Antarctic fish versus human cytoglobins - The same but yet so different. J Inorg Biochem 173, 66-78
  12. Fiocchetti M, Cipolletti M, Leone S, Naldini A, Carraro F, Giordano D, Verde C, Ascenzi P, Marino M (2016) Neuroglobin in breast cancer cells: effect of hypoxia and oxidative stress on protein level, localization, and anti-apoptotic function. PLoS One 11(5), e0154959
  13. Verde C, Giordano D, Gutt J, di Prisco G (2016) Editor’s corner Molecular-genetic studies of polar biodiversity - Preface. Biodiversity 17, 1-3
  14. Verde C, Giordano D, Bellas CM, di Prisco G, Anesio AM (2016) Polar marine microorganisms and climate change. Adv Microb Physiol 69, 187-215
  15. Giordano D, Coppola D, Russo R, di Prisco G, Denaro R, Giuliano L, Lauro F, Verde C (2015) Marine microbial secondary metabolites: pathways, evolution and physiological roles. Adv Microb Physiol, 66, 357-428
  16. Giordano D, Pesce A, Boechi L, Bustamante JP, Caldelli E, Howes BD, Riccio A, di Prisco G, Nardini M, Estrin D, Smulevich G, Bolognesi M, Verde C (2015) Structural flexibility of the heme cavity in the cold-adapted truncated hemoglobin from the Antarctic marine bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis FEBS J, 282, 2948-2965
  17. Giordano D, Russo R, Coppola D, Altomonte G, di Prisco G, Bruno S, Verde C (2015) “Cool” adaptations to cold environments: globins in Notothenioidei. Hydrobiologia, Biology of the Ross Sea, 761, 293-312
  18. Coppola D, Giordano D, Abbruzzetti S, Marchesani F, Balestrieri M, di Prisco G, Viappiani C, Bruno S, Verde C (2015) Functional characterisation of the haemoglobins of the migratory notothenioid fish Dissostichus eleginoides. Hydrobiologia, Biology of the Ross Sea, 761, 315-333
  19. Giordano D, Coppola D, Russo R, Tinajero-Trejo M, di Prisco G, Lauro F, Ascenzi P, Verde C (2013) The globins of cold-adapted Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis TAC125: from the structure to the physiological functions. Adv Microb Physiol 63, 329-89
  20. Van Leuven W, Cuypers B, Desmet F, Giordano D, Verde C, Moens L, Van Doorslaer S, Dewilde S (2013) Is the heme pocket region modulated by disulfide-bridge formation in fish and amphibian neuroglobins as in humans? Biochim Biophys Acta, 1834(9), 1757-63
  21. Russo R, Giordano D, di Prisco G, Hui Bon Hoa G, Marden MC, Verde C, Kiger L (2013) Ligand-rebinding kinetics of 2/2 hemoglobin from the Antarctic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis Biochim Biophys Acta 1834(9), 1932-8
  22. Coppola D, Giordano D, Tinajero-Trejo M, di Prisco G, Ascenzi P, Poole RK, Verde C (2013) Antarctic bacterial haemoglobin and its role in the protection against nitrogen reactive species. Biochim Biophys Acta 1834(9), 1923-31
  23. Verde C, di Prisco G, Giordano D, Russo R, Anderson D, Cowan D (2012) Antarctic psychrophiles: models for understanding the molecular basis of survival at low temperature and responses to climate change. Biodiversity 13, 249-256
  24. Verde C, Giordano D, di Prisco G, Andersen Ø (2012) The hemoglobins of polar fish: evolutionary and physiological significance of multiplicity in Arctic fish. Biodiversity 13, 228-233
  25. Giordano D, Boron I, Abbruzzetti S, Van Leuven W, Nicoletti FP, Forti F, Bruno S, Cheng CH, Moens L, di Prisco G, Nadra AD, Estrin D, Smulevich G, Dewilde S, Viappiani C, Verde C (2012) Biophysical characterisation of neuroglobin of the icefish, a natural knockout for hemoglobin and myoglobin. Comparison with human neuroglobin. PLoS One 7(12), e44508
  26. Coppola D, Abbruzzetti S, Nicoletti F, Merlino A, Gambacurta A, Giordano D, Howes BD, De Sanctis G, Vitagliano L, Bruno S, di Prisco G, Mazzarella L, Smulevich G, Coletta M, Viappiani C, Vergara A, Verde C (2012) ATP regulation of the ligand-binding properties in temperate and cold-adapted haemoglobins. X-ray structure and ligand-binding kinetics in the sub-Antarctic fish Eleginops maclovinus. Mol Biosyst 8(12), 3295-304
  27. Giordano D, Russo R, di Prisco G, Verde C (2012) Molecular adaptations in Antarctic fish and marine microorganisms. Mar Genomics 6, 1-6
  28. Verde C, Giordano D, Russo R, Riccio A, Coppola D, di Prisco G (2011) Evolutionary adaptations in Antarctic fish: the oxygen-transport system. Oecologia Australis 15, 40-50
  29. Giordano D, Russo R, Ciaccio C, Howes BD, di Prisco G, Marden MC, Hui Bon Hoa G, Smulevich G, Coletta M, Verde C (2011) Ligand- and proton-linked conformational changes of the ferrous 2/2 hemoglobin of Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis IUBMBLife 63, 566-73
  30. Riccio A, Mangiapia G, Giordano D, Flagiello A, Tedesco R, Bruno S, Vergara A, Mazzarella L, di Prisco G, Pucci P, Paduano L, Verde C (2011) Polymerization of hemoglobins in Arctic fish: Lycodes reticulatus and Gadus morhua. IUBMBLife 63, 346-54
  31. Howes BD, Giordano D, Boechi L, Russo R, Mucciacciaro S, Ciaccio C, Sinibaldi F, Fittipaldi M, Martí MA, Estrin DA, di Prisco G, Coletta M, Verde C, Smulevich G (2011) The peculiar heme pocket of the 2/2 hemoglobin of Antarctic cold-adapted Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis J Biol Inorg Chem 16, 299-311
  32. Russo R, Giordano D, Riccio A, di Prisco G, Verde C (2010) Cold-adapted bacteria and the globin case study in the Antarctic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis Mar Gen 3; 125-131
  33. Merlino A, Vitagliano L, Balsamo A, Nicoletti F, Howes B, Giordano D, Coppola D, di Prisco G, Verde C, Smulevich G, Mazzarella L, Vergara A (2010) Crystallization, preliminary X-ray diffraction studies and Raman microscopy of the major hemoglobin from the sub-Antarctic fish Eleginops maclovinus in the carbomonoxy form. Acta Crystallogr Section F 66, 1536-1540
  34. Parrilli E, Giuliani M, Giordano D, Russo R, Marino G, Verde C, Tutino ML (2010) The role of a 2-on-2 haemoglobin in oxidative and nitrosative stress resistance of Antarctic Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis Biochimie 92, 1003-1009
  35. Russo R, Riccio A, di Prisco G, Verde C, Giordano D (2010) Molecular adaptations in Antarctic fish and bacteria. Polar Science 4, 245-256
  36. Coppola D, Giordano D, Vergara A, Mazzarella L, di Prisco G, Verde, C Russo R (2010) The hemoglobins of sub-Antarctic notothenioid fishes. Polar Science 4, 295-308, ISSN: 1873-9652
  37. Giordano D, Russo R, Coppola D, di Prisco G, Verde C (2010) Molecular adaptations in hemoglobins of notothenioid fishes. J Fish Biol 76, 301-318
  38. Vergara A, Franzese M, Merlino A, Bonomi G, Verde C, Giordano D, di Prisco G, Lee HC, Peisach J, Mazzarella L (2009) Correlation between hemichrome stability and Root effect in tetrameric hemoglobins. Biophys J 97, 866-874
  39. Verde C, Giordano D, Russo R, Riccio A, Vergara A, Mazzarella L, di Prisco G (2009) Hemoproteins in the cold. Mar Gen 2, 67-73
  40. Giordano D, Boechi L, Vergara A, Martí MA, Samuni U, Dantsker D, Grassi L, Estrin DA, Friedman JM, Mazzarella L, di Prisco G, Verde C (2009) The hemoglobins of the sub-Antarctic fish Cottoperca gobio, a phyletically basal species. Oxygen-binding equilibria, kinetics and molecular dynamics. FEBS J 276, 2266-2277
  41. Verde C, Giordano D, di Prisco G (2008) The adaptation of polar fishes to climatic changes: structure, function and phylogeny of haemoglobin. IUBMB Life 60, 29-40
  42. Giordano D, Vergara A, Lee HC, Peisach J, Balestrieri M, Mazzarella L, di Prisco G, Verde C (2007) Hemoglobin structure/function and globin-gene evolution in the Arctic fish Liparis tunicatus. Gene 406, 58-68
  43. Giordano D, Parrilli E, Dettai A, Russo R, Barbiero G, Marino G, Lecointre G, di Prisco G Tutino ML, Verde C (2007) Truncated hemoglobins in the Antarctic psychrophilic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis Gene 398, 69-77
  44. di Prisco G, Eastman JT, Giordano D, Parisi E, Verde C (2007) Biogeography and adaptation of Notothenioid fish: hemoglobin function and globin-gene evolution. Gene 398, 143-155
  45. Verde C, Vergara A, Giordano D, Mazzarella L, di Prisco G (2007) The Root effect - a structural and evolutionary perspective. Antarctic Sci 19, 271-278
  46. Verde C, Giordano D, di Prisco G (2006) Molecular evolution of hemoglobins of polar fishes. Rev Environ Sci Biotechnol 5, 297-308
  47. Giordano D, Grassi L, Parisi E, Bargelloni L, di Prisco G, Verde C (2006) Embryonic β-globin in the non-Antarctic notothenioid fish Cottoperca gobio (Bovichtidae). Polar Biol 30:75-82
  48. Verde C, De Rosa MC, Giordano D, Mosca D, de Pascale D, Raiola L, Cocca E, Carratore V, Giardina B, di Prisco G (2005) Structure, function and molecular adaptations of haemoglobins of the polar cartilaginous fish Bathyraja eatonii and Raja hyperborea. Biochem J 389, 297-306.

Selected Publications

(full list available at CNR People)

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