Vito Foderà, Professor and Principal Investigator
Vito Foderà received his MSc (2005) and Ph.D. in Physics (2009) from the University of Palermo (Italy), with projects focused on the characterization of hydrogel-based devices for applications (M.Sc.) and (in)stability of peptides and proteins (Ph.D.). In 2009 he was appointed as a Research Associate at the Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge (UK). In 2012 Vito was awarded the Marie Curie IEF for Career Development grant that allowed him to join the Dept. of Drug Design and Pharmacology (University of Copenhagen). In 2014 he became Assistant Professor at the Department of Pharmacy, University of Copenhagen, and in 2016 tenured Associate Professor of Biophysics in the “Drug Delivery and Biophysics of Biopharmaceuticals” group at the same department. In 2018 he is recipient of the Villum Young Investigator award and is the PI of the related 5-year initiative “ProSmart”.
Samuel Lenton, Postdoc, Dec 2021- Nov 2025
Sam completed his PhD at the Institut-Laue Langevin and Keele University, where he used a combination of X-ray and neutron scattering to investigate the function of intrinsically disordered proteins originating from milk and other biofluids. Since then, he has completed postdocs in the UK and more recently at Lund university, using a range of biophysical techniques with a focus on X-ray and neutron scattering to study biological macromolecules. He joined Vito´s group in 2021 to study phase separation in amyloid systems, a project founded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation.
Mai Bay Stie, Postdoc, Jan 2021- Dec 2023
Mai Bay Stie holds a Master’s degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Southern Denmark (SDU, 2016) and a PhD degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of Copenhagen (UCPH, 2021). She joined the Foderà Lab as a Postdoc in January 2021 financed by the VILLUM “ProSmart” initiative. Mai is also affiliated with the Center for Biopharmaceuticals and Biobarriers in Drug Delivery. Her research focuses on the development of new and innovative drug delivery systems mainly based on proteins, from particles prepared in bulk to nanofibers prepared by electrospinning. She uses a large range of fabrication techniques together with advanced in vitro cell-based assays and ex vivo methods with fresh tissue.
Xuedan Sun, PhD Student, Nov 2022- Oct 2025
Xuedan Sun completed her undergraduate degree in pharmacy at the China Pharmaceutical University, before joining the University of Copenhagen as a Master student in Medicinal Chemistry in 2020. She joined Vito’s group to do an individual study in 2021 and then completed her master thesis project in 2022. Xuedan is a PhD student at the University of Copenhagen from November 2022 financed by the China Scholarship Council. Her research focuses on the generation and characterization of protein-based biomaterials and the evaluation of their physico–chemical properties for drug delivery and wound healing.
Xuezhi Zhuo, PhD Student, Oct 2020- Sept 2023
Xuezhi Zhuo completed his master’s degree in Pharmaceutical Science at Shenyang Pharmaceutical University in 2019, studying polymer nanoparticle formulation. He joined the Solid State Pharmaceutics group first at the University of Copenhagen in 2020 as a PhD student, focusing on protein-based amorphous formulations. And now, he is affiliated with Vito´s Lab (September 2022) to investigate the fundamental mechanism behind the stabilization in the solid amorphous form and in the supersaturated solution based on protein-based amorphous solid dispersions.
Kleopatra Kalouta, PhD Student, Nov 2020- Oct 2023
Kleopatra completed the MEng in Chemical Engineering studies at the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) in Greece, before coming to Copenhagen to pursue a Master in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Copenhagen, in 2017. Kleopatra joined Vito’s group in 2018 to conduct her master thesis project and she then continued as a research assistant at the “Drug Delivery and Biophysics of Biopharmaceuticals” group of the University of Copenhagen. Starting November 2020, Kleopatra is a double degree PhD student at the University of Copenhagen (supervised by Vito) and the University of Palermo (supervisor Associate Professor Valeria Vetri) and the PhD project is co-financed by the VILLUM “ProSmart” initiative and the University of Palermo. Her research focus is on the production and characterization of waterborne, protein nanostructures with low-to-zero impact for drug delivery applications.
Giorgia Puleo, PhD Student, Jan 2022- Dec 2024
Giorgia graduated in Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Technology at the University of Palermo (UNIPA) in Italy in 2020. In 2021, she was awarded a six-month scholarship for research activities at UNIPA in collaboration with the Experimental Zooprophylactic Institute of Sicily "A. Mirri” with a project titled: "Development of experimental procedures for the quantitative determination of active molecules on biological samples.”. Giorgia joined Vito’s group at the beginning of 2022 for her double degree, industrial Ph.D., which is carried out in collaboration between the University of Palermo (supervisor Associate Professor Valeria Vetri), the University of Copenhagen (supervised by Vito), and EmoLED, an Italian company in the field of photonics and photobiomodulation. Her research is focused on the production and characterization of new nanomaterials based on photocatalysts in combination with nanoparticles for photodynamic therapy.
Filippo Vitale, PhD Student, Jan 2022- Dec 2024
Filippo obtained a Bachelor's degree in Chemistry in Italy in 2018, and in March 2021, he completed the Master Degree in Chemistry at the University of Palermo (UNIPA). Filippo joined Vito’s group at the beginning of 2022 for his double degree, industrial Ph.D., which is carried out in collaboration between the University of Palermo (supervisor Associate Professor Delia Francesca Chillura Martino), the University of Copenhagen (supervised by Vito), and Novagenit s.r.l, an Italian company in the field of orthopedic implant. His research is focused on producing and characterizing new nanostructured composites with antibacterial activity to film onto orthopedic prostheses.
Inna Brakti, PhD Student, Sept 2022- Aug 2025
Inna completed her Master’s degree in biochemistry at the University of Copenhagen, where she combined NMR, SAXS, CD spectroscopy and ITC to study a large, intrinsically disordered transcription factor domain and its interaction with a small, folded hub protein. From September 2022, she i a joint PhD student between the groups of Vito Foderà and the Biophysical Analysis team at Novo Nordisk A/S, where Minna Grønning Jensen will be her main industrial supervisor. She will work on the PhD project “Explore, develop and implement prediction methods for physical in-use stability”.
Haya Munzer Azrak
Sama Yalmaz Hassan
Mathilde Dyberg Skandov
Project Review Day on September 11, 2019
Picture from the curling game on September 11, 2019
Picture from October 2017. From left: Vito, Anas, Akshit, Dirk, Michele, Hussein, Xin, Gloria and Adrian
Dr. Hussein Chaaban 2017-2022 (next destination: Novo Nordisk A/S)
Dr. Dirk Fennema Fennema Galparsoro 2017-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Dr. Camilla Thorlaksen 2018-2022 (next destination: Novo Nordisk A/S)
Dr. Xin Zhou 2017-2021 (next destination: unknown)
Maya Linea Bjaaland 2021-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Gajan Sivananthan 2021-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Khalid Omar 2021-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Hussein El-Abed Mehanna 2021-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Mohammed Nazmul Islam 2021-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Shah Taj Malik 2021-2022 (next destination: Novo Nordisk A/S)
Helhaam Shireen 2021-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Halimah Masood Feroze 2021-2022 (next destination: unknown)
Anders Wilgaard Sinkjær 2020-2021 (next destination: PhD Student, University of Copenhagen)
Gabriella Johannesen 2020-2021 (next destination: unknown)
Mariam Daoudi 2020-2021 (next destination: unknown)
Fharhat Safi Nazar 2020-2021 (next destination: unknown)
Masoud Hosseini 2020-2021 (next destination: Quality Assurance Professional, AP Operations at Novo Nordisk)
Evelina Jovaisaite 2019-2020 (next destination: Biosafety Specialist at Coloplast)
Sarah Al-Rawi 2019-2020 (next destination: Junior Regulatory Affairs Specialist at ConvaTec)
Reem Abushalleeh 2019-2020 (next destination: Pharmacovigilance Officer hos Lægemiddelstyrelsen
Nora Chehajber 2019-2020 (next destination: Processupporter hos Rigshospitalet)
Adriana-Maria Stanciu 2019-2020 (next destination: Associate Scientist at Ferring Pharmaceuticals)
Adrian Dario Juncos Bombin 2017-2018 (next destination: PhD student at the University of Belfast)
Jeff Jin Rong Quach 2017-2018 (next destination: unknown)
Gloria Singla 2017-2018 (next destination: Research Associate, Seattle Genetics)
Akshit Jaiswal 2017-2018 (next destination: unknown)
Gretha Di Donato 2017-2018 (next destination: Research Fellow, University of Milan, Italy)
Michel Corezzi 2016-2017 (next destination: Marketing Trainee, Sanofi Genzyme)
Anas Jaaloul 2016-2017 (next destination: Technical Sales Consultant at Phenomenex)
Edres Sayed Sayedi 2016-2017 (next destination: unknown)
Aleksandra Bartosik 2016-2017 (next destination: Research Quality Compliance Officer, Mundipharma, Cambridge UK )
Bruno Luigi Carlo Borro 2015-2016 (next destination: PhD student at the Dept. of Pharmacy, University of Copenhagen)
Martin Nors Pedersen 2012-2015 (next destination: PostDoc at ESRF, Grenoble, France)
Selma Turan 2014-2015 (next destination: Lundbeck, Denmark)
Ula Lapinska 2012 (next destination: PhD Student at the Dept. of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, UK)
Thea S. Wind 2011 (next destination: IV/WRS Coordinator at Novo Nordisk A/A, Copenhagen, Denmark)