Fini Paola

Esperienze Lavorative

Fellowship at CNR Centro Studi Chimico Fisici sull’Interazione Luce-Materia, Bari- Italy, directed by Prof. Mario Della Monica (1995).
Honour researcher in the laboratory of Biocalorimetry directed by Dott. J.Ladbury at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology – University College London – UK (1998).
Research grant at the Department of Chemistry-University of the Study of Bari with the supervision of prof. Mario Della Monica (1999).
Short term teacher in Chemistry and Material Science and in the high schools.
Short term researcher (art. 23 del DPR171/91) at CNR Centro Studi Chimico Fisici sull’Interazione Luce-Materia (2000)
Permanent position as Researcher (Ricercatore III liv)) at the Institute for Physical and Chemical Processes (Istituto per i Processi Chimico Fisici) IPCF CNR, Bari Division (Italy) (2001).
Tutorial activities for degree and doctoral projects at the Department of Chemistry University of Bari.
Participating in national and international research projects.
Lecturer in numerous courses and member of the board exams at the University of Study of Bari: Photochemical and Electrochemical Degradation of Materials, Chemistry of Materials and Processes of Degradation, Elements of Chemical Education, Educational Laboratory of Physical Chemistry, Chemical Laboratories of Advanced Teaching, Chemical Educational Pedagogical Laboratory, Pedagogical-didactic workshop on natural sciences for special educational needs, etc.
Supervisor and lecturer of the workshop for self-assessment Chimicamente of Piano Lauree Scientifiche – MIUR
Lecturer in the activity RES Chimica of the Piano Lauree Scientifiche-MIUR
Lecturer in training and refresher courses on for teacher of science in the primary and high schools (PON projects).
Lecturer in teaching science by means of experimental activities in PON courses for students of elementary, junior high and high schools.

Attività di Formazione

– Degree in Chemistry with full marks (110/110) cum laude at the University of Study of Bari.
– PhD in Chemistry at the Department of Chemistry – University of the Study of Bari. PhD thesis: Thermodynamic of aggregation of biological molecules (Supervisor: prof. Maurizio Castagnolo).
– Specialization course in “Methods and research techniques in the educational process”-University of Study of Bari.
– Specialization course in ” Intercultural pedagogy”-University of Study of Bari.
– Qualified as teacher of Chemistry and Chemical Tecnology in the High School.
– Qualified as teacher of Mathematics and Sciences in the Middle School.
– Qualified chemist as a chemist.
Calorimetry and Thermal Analysis Schools
National Course of Introduction to Photochemistry organized by the Department of Chemistry “G.Ciamician”- Bologna.
Summer School of Chemical Didactics and Educational Research “Ulderigo Segre” (Urbino) organized by DD-SCI.
Training course as an expert in the evaluation of learning processes (OECD-PISA, IEA and INVALSI) organized INVALSI- MIUR
Summer School “Scienza-Orienta”on the didactics of sciences organized by DD-SCI and USR Puglia
Training Seminar Authors PON Science Education organized by INDIRE – MIUR

Attività di Ricerca

a) Design, study and characterization of systems based on pigments, photosynthetic and not, for biomedical applications and food processing
Supramolecular complexes between cyclodextrins and photosynthetic pigments have been developed and characterized for a possible use in photodynamic therapy. The first part of the research work has been devoted to the characterization of the behavior of chlorophyll a in aqueous cyclodextrin solutions. Then the photosensitizing ability of complexes have been studied, also in collaboration with the research group of prof.C. Foote Los Angeles UCLA University. The study has been extended to other porphyrin-like compounds as chlorofillid and tetra (4-pyridyl) porphyrin and a well known xanthenes family dye, Rose Bengal. The cytotoxicity and phototoxicity of some supramolecular systems have been studied in vitro using different cancer cell lines in collaboration with the research group of Prof. B Roeder of the Humbolt University in Berlin. Finally the produced ROS in the systems have been identified by the exclusive use of chemical probes.
Another part of the work was dedicated to the design and development of new polymer systems or gel-based, easier to use in the agri-food sector, able to incorporate photosensitizing pigments in the photoactive form. Among the various polymeric materials able of forming gels, particular attention was devoted to chitosan and alginate. Chitosan films have been studied and modified in order to obtain antimicrobic chitosan-based films for application in antibacterial photodynamic therapy, APDT, (in the field of active food packaging, using photosynthetic pigments, as active agents), to develop a solid state hybrid biodevice chitosan/thiothymidine-based for the detection of Reactive Oxygen Species, ROS, in turn generated during the photodynamic action of appropriate photosensitizers
The study of inclusion complexes has also been addressed also to the use of cyclodextrins for analytical applications in the detection of substances particularly important in the food industry such as Ochratoxin A (OTA).
b) Use of the techniques calorimetric and thermal analysis for the study of materials and complex systems
Calorimetry and thermal analysis have been used to study polymers, oligomers, nanostructured materials, functionalized phthalocyanines, drugs adsorbed on nanoparticles, thermal stability of oleoresins and bacterial metabolism in the presence of heavy metals.
Concerning nanostructured materials, the energy state of the nanoparticles, their interactions with the water / surfactant interface and solubilization of CdS nanoparticles in aqueous phase through the use of cyclodextrins have been studied. The results of this study are reported are part of the Integrated Project NaPa (VI European Framework Programme) Emerging Methodologies for nanopatterning.
The thermal behavior of polymeric materials, especially useful in optoelectronic semiconductor device as active layers in the OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode), has been studied. This study is the result of a collaboration with the group of prof. Nobile at the Department of Engineering of Waters and Chemistry of the Polytechnic of Bari.
Calorimetry has also been used to study the interactions among cyclodextrins, the effect of the osmotic stress on the binding constants, the distribution of different substances in micellar systems and life cycle of the bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides.
c) Development of supramolecular systems for environmental applications
This topic is part of a LIFE+ European project, DYES4EVER (LIFE12 ENV/ES/000309), aimed to validate the ability of CDs to recover dyes from textile wastewater, give back and reuse them, along with cleaned water as raw materials. Different systems based on cyclodextrin polymers, alginate microparticles, coated or not with chitosan, and olive oil pomace have been developed, characterized and tested as absorbent materials for direct and disperse textile dyes. The results obtained studying cyclodextrins polymers have been used to set up a semi-industrial scale pilot effective for direct dyes.
d) Dissemination of scientific culture and development of new educational proposals to make more accessible the teaching of chemistry for different grade students.
The research activity concerning this topic have been mainly carried out in collaboration with INDIRE (Istituto Nazionale di Documentazione, Innovazione e Ricerca Educativa), INVALSI (Istituto Nazionale per la Valutazione del Sistema Educativo di Istruzione e di Formazione) and PLS – Chimica ( Piano Lauree Scientifiche). New experimental activities about the chemistry of everyday life have been projected and developed with the aim of making chemistry closer to people. All activities are based on reactants and glassware easy to find and use also in schools without laboratories.


Expert in many analytical techniques as Calorimetry ( Isothermal and Adiabatic), Thermal Analysis (DSC and TG), Spectroscopy ( UV-Vis Absorption, Emission and Circular Dichroism). Skills in the main techniques use to express, extract and purify proteins. Expert in teaching science by means of experimental activities in scholastic and extra-scholastic courses for the improvements competence in science for students and teachers of elementary, junior high and high schools.

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