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Raffaele De Francesco (RDF) earned a degree in Biology from the University of Milan. Subsequently, he was a postdoctoral fellow at Emory University, Atlanta, U.S.A., and at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Heidelberg, Germany. Between 1991 and 2008, Raffaele De Francesco worked at I.R.B.M./Merck Research Laboratory in Rome (Italy), where he worked on the identification of molecular targets for antiviral therapy and the development HCV enzyme inhibitors as novel agents for the treatment chronic hepatitis C. In 2008, he joined INGM as a Group Leader and responsible  for the Virology laboratory. In December 2019, RDF has been appointed as Professor of General Microbiology in the Department of Pharmacological and Biomolecular Sciences (DiSFeB) at the University of Milano.

RDF is internationally recognized primarily for his pioneering work on the molecular virology of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) and for his key contributions to antiviral drug discovery. His early work in this area was pivotal in the identification of what became the most successful molecular targets of the new direct antivirals for HCV.  In recognition of his contribution to the development of highly effective HCV antivirals,  RDF won the 2018 Lennart Philipson Award.

His current research interests focus on chronic viral hepatitis and cancer and include the identification of novel viral or host targets for the eradication of viral infection as well as the identification of novel strategies for the identification of new anti-cancer agents.

RDF has more than 150 papers published in peer-reviewed journal and an H-index of 70 (Scopus) and is inventor in many international patents.


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