Italiano english

Alessandra and the other: Italian women innovators and inventors prize-awarded in Reykyavik

Alessandra and the other: Italian women innovators and inventors prize-awarded in Reykyavik An international jury has assigned the European Union Women Inventors & Innovators Awards in Reykjavik: the Italian Alessandra Fierabracci has been appointed as the Best European Woman Inventor in the “Education” sector (third place overall).

 Other 4 Italian finalists – 3 researchers and 1 entrepreneur – have obtained special mentions and great appreciations from all the numerous participants of the international conference on "SUSTAINABLE IDEAS AND CREATIVITY FOR SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC GROWTH", organized by GWIIN/EUWIIN (international network of women inventors and innovators, which the Italian association ITWIIN is linked to). Conference works, opened by the President of the Republic of Iceland Olafur Ragnar GRIMSSON and by the Minister of Industry Katrin JULIUSDOTTIR, have been held on the 7th and the 8th September at the New Harpa Conference Centre in Reykjavik.
Alessandra Fierabracci had already participated in the 2010 edition of the Italian ITWIIN Prize and entered the list of finalists thanks to her brilliant research at the Laboratory of Immunology of the “Bambin Gesù” Hospital in Rome. In 2001, Alessandra got here after having earned her PhD diploma in Immunology (1996) and having worked extensively at the London University and at the University of Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania, USA). Her studies on the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases in humans open up significant prospects in the prediction of onset of diabetes: in fact, Alessandra has developed a kit to detect T cells autoreactive to GAD65 protein in the peripheral blood of patients with type 1 diabetes. Back from Iceland she said: "I am very grateful to ITWIIN association which paved my way to Iceland for me. The result achieved in Reykyavik makes me happy, especially because I saw that the jury and all participants have well realized the huge commitment and determination that characterize a researcher’s worklife".

Special mentions in Iceland were received also by the following ITWIIN members:

- Carla Ferreri, with degree in Pharmacy from the University of Naples in 1981 and specialized in Hospital Pharmacy. From 1983 Carla has collaborated with Prof. E. Wenkert’s team, University of San Diego, California, before returning to the University of Naples, Department of Organic and Biological Chemistry. From 2000 she works with Dr. Chatgilialoglu in the field of free radicals: she is currently Senior Researcher at CNR-ISOF, ‘Area di Ricerca’ [research park] of ​​Bologna. Carla’s interests concern the chemistry of free radicals and in particular the lipidomics of cell membrane. These investigations have resulted into the innovative project " Lipidomic profile of cell membranes, a molecular approach applied to human health" and the birth of CNR spin-off "Lipinutragen": in this area, FAT PROFILE® has been developed – at both industrial and commercial level – for the lipidomic analysis of cell membranes. This innovative product allows a physician to obtain molecular information on the status of patient's cell membrane, to get a characterization of its lipidomic profile, and to act at nutritional and nutraceutical level in a well-targeted way. Carla won, with this original product, the ITWIIN 2010 Competition for the Best Italian Woman Innovator.

- Debora Fino, with degree in Chemical Engineering from Politecnico di Torino. Currently, she is researcher at the Department of Materials Science and Chemical Engineering where she investigates, inter alia, about catalytic exhaust treatment, catalytic filters for the gas treatment, and development of processes and advanced plants for fuel cell desulphurization. Debora’s research draws its motivation from the need to limit as much as possible the amount of black carbon particles, whose dangerousness has led the European Community to set very strict limits and to encourage the development of technologies able to reduce emissions . Her research on the development of innovative catalytic traps led Debora to a fundamental discovery: some particulate filters (DPF) regeneration systems produce significant emissions of PM0.1 particles. In 2004 she won the ‘Debut in Research‘ Italgas Prize, further confirming the importance of her studies, which presently Debora keeps on carrying out through collaboration with numerous research centers, companies, and Italian/foreign institutions, thanks to (even very substantial) funding from national and European contracts. In the ITWIIN 2010 competition, Debora distinguished herself also as an effective popularizer.

- Angela Serpe, born in Naples and graduated in Chemistry at the University of Cagliari, where she currently acts as Teacher. She’s vice President of 3R Metals Srl, a university spin-off, that deals with the recovery and recycling of precious metals from hi-tech waste. Angela has an extensive research experience in the field of eco-friendly chemical methods: such intensive activity has enabled her to achieve significant results, in particular in palladium recovery from car exhausted catalytic converters and in recovering gold and copper from electrical and electronic waste. The methods developed by Angela, which are the subject of European patents and relevant scientific publications, are based on the use of substances capable of combining efficiency in recovery of precious metals with a low environmental impact as well as mild operating conditions, in contrast to methods commonly used for the same purpose. Her business idea was awarded the "Start Cup Trieste Award 2005" and ranked among the top ten at the "Award for Innovation" (Padua, 2006). Angela won the title of Best Inventor in the ITWIIN 2010 Competition.

- Giuseppina Grimaldi, whose activity takes place in an innovative enterprise, instead than in a laboratory. Born in Vicenza, since young Giuseppina showed special skills in the goldsmith's art field. She founded an undertaking (namely, the Naoto Jewelry, based in Vicenza and London) which creates objects with innovative design. However, she deals also with organization and business development, having promoted the creation of a business incubator conceived and designed for women. Giuseppina received a special mention in the ‘Futuro Economia’ [Economics Future] section of ITWIIN 2010 Competition.