Biffo Stefano

Principal Investigator


Stefano Biffo earned a degree of Doctor in Biology from the University of Torino. Subsequently, he was a fellow at Roche Institute of Molecular Biology, Nutley, NJ, U.S.A., and postdoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Psychiatry, Martinsried, Germany.
 In this period he earned a Ph.D. in neuroendocrinology and focused on the study of neuronal differentiation. From 1995, he moved at San Raffaele Scientific Institute, where he stayed until 2013 first as a senior scientist and then as a group leader. Here he cloned eIF6, an initiation factor necessary for growth factor-induced translation. His work focuses on the role that translational control plays in disease with a focus on cancer and inherited Swachman Diamond syndrome. In 1998 he became Associate Professor of Cell Biology at the University of Eastern Piedmont. He moved in 2014 at INGM. His current work focuses on the molecular mechanisms by which translational control regulates cell growth and proliferation.


  • Role of eIF6 and RACK1 in cancer malignancy.
  • Characterization of Fam46c tumor suppressor protein in multiple myeloma.
  • Role of miRNA in translational control of malignant mesothelioma.
  • Development of new models to study translation in human cancer cells and in the human immune system.
  • Definition of therapeutic targets in Swachman Diamond Syndrome.


eIF6 antiassociation activity is required for translational control and tumor progression. BBA Gene Regulatory mechanisms
Brina, D., Ricciardi, S., Miluzio, A., and Biffo, S.
(2014). In press.

Translation factors and ribosomal proteins control tumor onset and progression: how?
Loreni, F., Mancino, M., and Biffo, S.
Oncogene (2014) 33, 2145-2156

RACK1 depletion in a mouse model causes lethality, pigmentation deficits and reduction in protein synthesis efficiency
Volta, V., Beugnet, A., Gallo, S., Magri, L., Brina, D., Pesce, E., Calamita, P., Sanvito, F., and Biffo, S.
Cellular and molecular life sciences (2013a) CMLS 70, 1439-1450

Preclinical demonstration of synergistic Active Nutrients/Drug (AND) combination as a potential treatment for malignant pleural mesothelioma
Volta, V., Ranzato, E., Martinotti, S., Gallo, S., Russo, M.V., Mutti, L., Biffo, S., and Burlando, B.
PloS one (2013b) 8, e58051

Cap dependent translation contributes to resistance of myeloma cells to bortezomib
Mancino, M.G., S., Terragna, C., Cavo, M., Biffo, S.
Translation 1 (2013) e27245-27241

Epigallocatechin-3-gallate induces mesothelioma cell death via H2 O2 -dependent T-type Ca2+ channel opening
Ranzato, E., Martinotti, S., Magnelli, V., Murer, B., Biffo, S., Mutti, L., and Burlando, B.
Journal of cellular and molecular medicine (2012) 16, 2667-2678

Growth defects and impaired cognitive-behavioral abilities in mice with knockout for Eif4h, a gene located in the mouse homolog of the Williams-Beuren syndrome critical region
Capossela, S., Muzio, L., Bertolo, A., Bianchi, V., Dati, G., Chaabane, L., Godi, C., Politi, L.S., Biffo, S., D’Adamo, P., et al.
The American journal of pathology (2012) 180, 1121-1135

Long non-coding antisense RNA controls Uchl1 translation through an embedded SINEB2 repeat
Carrieri, C., Cimatti, L., Biagioli, M., Beugnet, A., Zucchelli, S., Fedele, S., Pesce, E., Ferrer, I., Collavin, L., Santoro, C., et al.
Nature (2012) 491, 454-457

Translational control by 80S formation and 60S availability: the central role of eIF6, a rate limiting factor in cell cycle progression and tumorigenesis
Brina, D., Grosso, S., Miluzio, A., and Biffo, S.
Cell cycle (2011) 10, 3441-3446

Tagging of functional ribosomes in living cells by HaloTag(R) technology
Gallo, S., Beugnet, A., and Biffo, S.
In vitro cellular & developmental biology Animal (2011) 47, 132-138

Sensitivity of global translation to mTOR inhibition in REN cells depends on the equilibrium between eIF4E and 4E-BP1
Grosso, S., Pesce, E., Brina, D., Beugnet, A., Loreni, F., and Biffo, S.
PloS one 6, (2011) e29136

Impairment of cytoplasmic eIF6 activity restricts lymphomagenesis and tumor progression without affecting normal growth
Miluzio, A., Beugnet, A., Grosso, S., Brina, D., Mancino, M., Campaner, S., Amati, B., de Marco, A., and Biffo, S.
Cancer cell (2011) 19, 765-775

Selective ascorbate toxicity in malignant mesothelioma: a redox Trojan mechanism
Ranzato, E., Biffo, S., and Burlando, B.
American journal of respiratory cell and molecular biology (2011) 44, 108-117

Reduced AKT/mTOR signaling and protein synthesis dysregulation in a Rett syndrome animal model
Ricciardi, S., Boggio, E.M., Grosso, S., Lonetti, G., Forlani, G., Stefanelli, G., Calcagno, E., Morello, N., Landsberger, N., Biffo, S., et al.
Human molecular genetics (2011) 20, 1182-1196.

INGM researches are supported by