Dr. Alekos Simoni is a molecular biologist by training, currently the Scientific Manager of the Genetics and Ecology Research Centre of Polo GGB in Italy and part-time Research Associate in the Department of Life Sciences at Imperial College London.
After graduation in Molecular Biology (University of Padova, Italy) and a PhD at the Queen Mary University of London, Alekos Simoni joined the Crisanti Lab at Imperial College London in 2011, working on novel strategies to control the mosquito vector of malaria. He initially pioneered the development of synthetic gene drives in fruit flies, and later contributed to the development of gene drives for population control of Anopheles gambiae, the main malaria vector in Africa.
Since 2019, he has been the Scientific Manager of Polo d’Innovazione Genomica, Genetica e Biologia (Polo GGB), in Terni (Italy).
Polo GGB is one of the key partners of Target Malaria, with a pivotal role in testing the efficacy and safety of gene drives for population control of mosquitoes. Alekos’ main areas of research are:
- the optimization of gene drive for population control,
- the development of sex distorter gene drives and,
- the relation between gene drives genetics and ecology.
Recent media coverage:
- BBC News, ‘Why is this African village letting mosquitoes in?‘
- The Economist, ‘The promise and peril of gene drives‘