Monah Abou Alezz bio photo

Monah Abou Alezz

This website provides research updates from Monah Abou Alezz, PhD (he/his/him).

Monah is a postdoctoral researcher in the Bioinformatics Core of the San Raffaele Telethon Institute for Gene Therapy (TIGET), Milan - Italy.

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Curriculum vitae

Personal Information

  • Address: Via Adolfo Ferrata 17, Pavia 27100 (PV), Italy
  • Date of Birth: 03/04/1994
  • Email:

Professional Experience

October 2020 - Current Postodoctoral researcher, Bioinformatics Core - San Raffaele Telethon Institute for Gene Therapy (TIGET), Milan - Italy

  • Retrovirus-host interactions and innate immunity to gene transfer: Prof. Anna Kajaste-Rudnitski
  • Epigenetic regulation and targeted genome editing: Prof. Angelo Lombardo
  • Human hematopoietic development and disease modeling: Dr. Andrea Ditadi

September 2019 - Current Software and Data Carpentry Instructor, The Carpentries organization, California - USA

  • Teaching foundational coding and data science skills to researchers in worldwide workshops:
  • Selected workshops:
    • Genentech, A member of the Roche group: Data Carpentry instructor: Data analysis and visualization in R, Mar 22 - 25, 2021
    • George Washington University: Genomics workshop instructor: Variant calling workflow using AWS, Mar 04 - 12, 2021
    • Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine: Data Carpentry instructor: Exploratory analysis of biological data, Feb 16 - 19, 2021
    • Rutgers University: Genomics workshop instructor: Project management/ Introduction to cloud computing, Jan 26 - 29, 2021
    • NIH Network of the National Library of Medicine: Library Carpentry instructor: Databases and SQL, Jan 07 - 08, 2021
    • Genentech, A member of the Roche group: Software Carpentry instructor: Plotting and programming in Python, Dec 14 - 17, 2020

October 2018 - September 2020 Bioinformatics Tutor, University of Pavia, Pavia - Italy

  • Bioinformatics Course - Masters in Molecular Biology and Genetics
  • Training and practical sessions in bioinformatics tools

October 2017 - September 2020 PhD internship, Institute of Molecular Genetics Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza, National Research Council, Pavia - Italy

  • Laboratory of Computational Biology
  • Project: Characterization of long non-coding RNAs genomic and splicing features
  • PI: Prof. Silvia Bione

July 2017 - October 2017 ERASMUS+ Traineeship, Institute of Plant Genetics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poznan - Poland

  • Laboratory of Plant Genetics
  • Project: Bioinformatics characterization and identification of miRNAs in woody species
  • PI: Dr. Jorge A. Pinto Paiva

November 2015 - July 2017 Masters Internship, University of Pavia - Department of Biology and Biotechnology L.Spallanzani, , Pavia - Italy

  • Laboratory of Cell and Neurobiology
  • Influence of divalent cations on DNA methylation and the modulation of chromatin structure in an in situ ultrastructural study
  • PI: Prof. Marco Biggiogera

July 2009 - July 2015 Laboratory Assistant, Lebanese Agriculture Research Institution (LARI), Tal Amara - Lebanon

  • Department of Crop Production
    • Project: Quality analysis on commercial wheat for classification and marketing
    • PI: Eng. Chafic Stephane
  • Department of Plant Breeding and Improvement
    • Project: Identification of new promising varieties of Triticum aestivum, Hordeum vulgare, and Lens culinaris with high productivity, good grain quality and good adaptation to different climatic conditions.
    • PI: Eng. Rabih Kabalan


2017 - 2020 University of Pavia, PhD in Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology

2015 - 2017 University of Pavia, Masters Degree in Molecular Biology and Genetics

2012 - 2015 Lebanese University, Bachelor Degree in Earth and Life Sciences


Bioinformatics Skills

  • Proficient in genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics data analysis
  • Proficient knowledge of programming languages: R, python, bash, perl
  • Proficient knowledge of cloud computing and AWS
  • Proficient knowledge in machine learning approaches
  • Proficient knowledge of Windows 7/8/10, MacOS and Linux operative systems
  • Proficient knowledge in version control and source code management tools
  • Basic knowledge in SQL
  • Proficient knowledge in Microsoft office suite
  • Image Analysis Software: Adobe Photoshop, ImageJ, Cell F, GraphPad

Wet Laboratory Skills

  • Proficient in Microscopy utilization and samples preparation: electron microscopy (ZEISS EM 900), electron spectroscopic imaging, fluorescence microscopy, light microscopy (bright field, dark field, phase contrast, DIC)
  • Proficient in molecular biology lab techniques: DNA/RNA extraction, PCR, gene cloning, protein extraction, western blot, ELISA
  • proficient in microbiology laboratory techniques: gram staining, bacterial cell culture, antibiotic specificity, bacterial identification biochemical testing.
  • In vitro plant cell culture

Language Skills

  • Mother-tongue Language: Arabic
  • Proficient in English (B2) and Italian (B1) Languages
  • Novice in French (A1) and Polish (A1) Languages


2019 Best Poster Prize, EMBL-EMBO Symposium: The Non-Coding Genome

2018 Fellowship Grant, AIRC Foundation

2018 Travel Grant, INTEROMICS

2017 Fellowship Grant, Besta Neurological Institute

2017 ERASMUS+ fellowship, University of Pavia



2021 Unali G, Giordano AMS, Cuccovillo I, Abou Alezz M, Apolonia L, Merelli I, Malim MH, Petrillo C, Kajaste-Rudnitski A. The lysine-rich intracellular loop and cell type-specific co-factors are required for IFITM3 antiviral immunity in hematopoietic stem cells. bioRxiv.

2020 Abou Alezz M, Celli L, Belotti G, Lisa A and Bione S. 2020. GC-AG Introns Features in Long Non-coding and Protein-Coding Genes Suggest Their Role in Gene Expression Regulation. Front. Genet. 11:488. doi:10.3389/fgene.2020.00488


2020 Abou Alezz M, Salviati L, Alfieri R, Bione S. 2020. GencoDymo: Data Extraction and Manipulation from the GENCODE Database. R-package version 0.2.1. doi:10.5281/zenodo.3605995

Oral Presentations and Abstracts

2020 Abou Alezz M, Celli L, Belotti G, Salviati L, Nicastro A, Alfieri R, Lisa A, Bione S. GC-AG introns features in long non-coding and protein-coding genes suggest their role in gene expression regulation - 22nd EMBL PhD Symposium: The Roaring 20s - Online conference

2020 Abou Alezz M, Celli L, Belotti G, Salviati L, Nicastro A, Alfieri R, Lisa A, Bione S. GC-AG introns features in long non-coding and protein-coding genes suggest their role in gene expression regulation” - Cancer Science Institute of Singapore: 6th RNA Biology Symposium 2020 - Online conference

2020 Abou Alezz M, Celli L, Belotti G, Salviati L, Nicastro A, Alfieri R, Lisa A, Bione S. GC-AG introns features in long non-coding and protein-coding genes suggest their role in gene expression regulation” - 25th Annual meeting of the RNA Society - Online conference

2020 Abou Alezz M, Celli L, Belotti G, Lisa A, Bione S. Unexpected features of GC-AG introns in long non-coding and protein-coding genes suggest a new role as regulatory elements – Pavia 3rd Annual Joint Symposium – LIFE SCIENCE 2020 - Pavia, Italy

2019 Abou Alezz M, Celli L, Belotti G, Bione S. Characterization of the genomic and splicing features of long non-coding RNAs using bioinformatics approaches - EMBL Symposia 2019: The Non-Coding Genome - Heidelberg, Germany

2018 Borowska M, Abou Alezz M, Jarząb M, Gomes C, Balestrazzi A, Paiva J. Preliminary overview on conserved miRNAs in Salix purpurea L. - Integrative Plant Biology Conference, IPG PAS - Poznań, Poland

2018 Abou Alezz M, Celli L, Bione S. Computational approach towards genomic characterization of human long non-coding RNA - EMBO Workshop 2018: From epigenome towards epitranscriptome in cell fate choice - Capri, Italy

2018 Masiello I, Siciliani S, Abou Alezz M, Bina V, Casali C, Stortiero M, Tollemeto V, Biggiogera M. High resolution dissection of interphase chromatin. Is 5-methylcytosine the main character in chromatin condensation? – 22nd International Chromosome Conference - Prague, Czech Republic

2017 Biggiogera M, Abou Alezz M, Bina V, Stortiero M, Tollemeto V, Masiello I. Heterogeneity of perichromatin fibril-associated factors - 25th Wilhelm Bernhard Workshop on the Cell Nucleus – Nizhny Novgorod, Russia

2016 Biggiogera M, Tollemeto V, Bina V, Abou Alezz M, Masiello I. Transcription time window applied to RNA modifications in HeLa cells – Nuclear structure and dynamics through the microscopes symposium - Pavia, Italy

Last updated: 2021-04-13