Laura Perego

I am currently a Ph.D. candidate at the European Laboratory for Non-Linear Spectroscopy in Firenze, Italy. I obtained my master’s degree in 2018 at the University of Milan. I joined the Biophysics group at LENS during my master thesis and I then continued my work there attending an International Doctorate in Atomic and Molecular Photonics, in the Single Molecule Biophysics Group of Dr. Marco Capitanio.
My work mostly concerns the study of mechano-transduction, which is the role of mechanical forces in regulating biological systems. I worked on a challenging project to build and characterize a Florescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) microscope combining optical manipulation through optical tweezers and florescence imaging, to apply and measure forces in living cells. I am currently using this setup to characterize the mechanical properties of different proteins in different mechanical environments. FRET microscopy is performed through FRET sensors inserted into specific proteins, while mechanical stress is applied with optical tweezers or by changing the stiffness on which cells grow.