Francesca Santoro is trying to find out how electronic microchip-based devices are coupled to biological tissues. She and her team developed a biohybrid synapse through the coupling of an artificial neuron and biological neuronal cells that spontaneously release the neurotransmitter dopamine.
Falling Walls Breakthrough Conversation with Francesca Santoro
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
Francesca Santoro is an Electrical Engineering, head of the ‘Tissue Electronics’ lab at Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia–IIT in Italy, where electronic microchip-based devices are coupled to biological tissues. In 2020 she has been awarded the prestigious ERC Starting Grant. Since 2019, she is part of the core team of BRYLA a startup project of IIT. In 2018 she has been awarded the MIT Technology Review Under 35 Innovator ITALIA and EUROPE. Dr. Santoro has authored over 40 peer-reviewed papers in high-impact scientific journals, has been invited to over 30 international scientific conferences.
Zulfikar Abbany is a Senior Science Editor and multimedia journalist for Germany’s international broadcaster, DW (Deutsche Welle). He has produced and presented events for the European XFEL, DESY and World Health Summit in Germany, DATA.SPACE in Glasgow and spoken at the Battle of Ideas in London. Before that he was in news and current affairs with Australia Network television and Radio Australia for the Asia Pacific region. He has written for New Scientist, The Independent, The Observer, Sydney Morning Herald and The (Melbourne) Age newspapers.