On 30 January 2018, news spread around the world: researchers from the University of Trento devised the most advanced genome editing technique in the world.

The Centre for Integrative Biology - CIBIO of the University of Trento, created a highly precise “genomic scalpel”, which could represent a huge step forward in the treatment of tumors and genetic disorders.

The research team at CIBIO refined an already existing technique, the CRISP/Cas9, with which it is possible to remove portions of the genetic code where DNA is damaged. This technique, however, was not sufficiently accurate because the cuts could affect parts of healthy genome with unpredictable consequences, and this aspect made it unsuitable for clinical applications.

The turning point came when Cibio managed to develop this technique and to make it work like a precise and safe genomic scalpel. In the future, the applications of the genomic scalpel in clinical settings may involve a wide range of serious conditions, from genetic disorders to tumors.

Now CIBIO would like to continue to improve the technique to expand its area of application, to make this already powerful and precise tool suitable to be used to treat a wide range of diseases caused by genetic abnormalities.

Many other research groups in Europe, North America and China are already working on this technique, but the researchers led by professor Anna Cereseto at CIBIO can count on their strong expertise and on their unique time advantage.

However, in order to do this, we need to collect resources to fund the young researchers who will work in the laboratories. We need to ensure 40,000 euro per year per researcher. The funds provided by the University of Trento now only cover the expenses for the head of the laboratory. 

CIBIO will launch four different projects to make the genome editor more precise. Each of these projects will be assigned to one young researcher who will receive a one-year research fellowship and a small laboratory budget.

  1. Optimizing the transfer of the genome editor
    Researcher salary: 25,000 euro
    Laboratory consumables budget: 15,000 euro
  2. Strengthening gene removal techniques
    Researcher salary: 25,000 euro
    Laboratory consumables budget: 15,000 euro
  3. Evolution of mutant proteins for their engineering in genetic disorders
    Researcher salary: 25,000 euro
    Laboratory consumables budget: 15,000 euro
  4. Compensating genetic alterations to increase protein function
    Researcher salary: 25,000 euro
    Laboratory consumables budget: 15,000 euro

Target amount: 160,000 euro.  For this reason, the University decided to invite everyone to participate in our crowdfunding campaign.

Help us do more

To contribute to the progress of science and medicine, and help this research project remain in Italy

and be part of the research group in Trento which has launched the most important challenge in Italy in the fight against currently incurable diseases.

How to contribute

Credit card or PayPal

Click on the "donate now" button and you will be transferred to the website of Banca popolare di Sondrio.
At this point:

  1. select the beneficiary - choose Università di Trento
  2. payment object (top right corner) - choose correttore genomico
  3. type in the amount you would like to donate
  4. in the “causale” (motivation) field, choose "donazione di modico valore per correttore genomico” (small charitable donations to the genome editor)
  5. fill in the fields marked with an asterisk and click on avanti (continue)
  6. choose your payment method and then click on paga (pay)

Bank transfer

Università degli Studi di Trento
IBAN: IT30V0569601800000003117X69
In the “causale” (motivation) field, state "donazione di modico valore per correttore genomico” (low value charitable donation to the genome editor).

Under article 783 of the Italian Civil Code, what is meant by “low value” depends on the financial status of the donor.

For donations above 1.000 € please contact: fundraising [at] unitn.it

Tax advantages

Donations to research conducted at the University of Trento are deductible from income tax.

For tax purposes, to prove that you have made a donation, keep the payment receipt with the documents you will need when you fill in your tax return. For further information download the pdf file in the Download section.