Gabriella has an academic background as Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Virology at the University of Bologna (UNIBO), Italy. Her field of interest has been herpes simplex virus (HSV), with a focus on HSV entry. Her research led to the discovery of nectin1, a major HSV receptor, and later on, of epithelial integrins as additional receptors, and to the identification of the distinct roles played by the glycoproteins that form the multipartite entry machinery of the virus. In the past ten years she has pioneered the field of retargeting/detargeting the tropism of HSV to cancer specific receptors, and is the Inventor of the family of the corresponding patents.
She is member of the Editorial Board of Journal of Virology, of Pathogens and Disease, previously FEMS Immunology and Medical Microbiology, and Editor of Human Herpesviruses, Cambridge Press, and founding member of Executive Board Member of European Society for Virology, European Academy of Microbiology, Italian Society of Virology. Elected to the American Academy of Microbiology. She has published in leading scientific journals on virology, microbial pathogenesis, life sciences. She has been for several years Research Assistant at the Viral Oncology Laboratories, University of Chicago.
She completed her Biological Science degree at the University of Bologna, before receiving her specialty in Virology at the same University, and carrying out Post-graduate training at the Max Planck Institute, Heidelberg, and University College, London.