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procaccini gabrieleResearch Director
Integrative Marine Ecology Department

Tel. +39 081 5833363
Fax: +39 081 7641355
e-mail: gabriele.procaccini(at)szn.it
Skype: gprocaccini
Procaccini's Group website

Curriculum Vitae

Research interests

My main aim is at studying the evolutionary history of populations and species along natural clines and the plasticity of the adaptive response to climate and environmental changes in marine organisms, with particular focus on marine plants. The research focuses on two main directions:
- Understanding the role of environmental and evolutionary factors in shaping the spatial distribution of genotypes at a population, meta-population and geographic scale. Species-specific SSR markers are applied to study the phylogeographic patterns and population genetic structure in seagrasses, Mediterranean invasive seaweeds, planktonic diatoms and commercially important marine species. A particular focus is on the role of the Mediterranean biogeographic barriers, in relation to the dispersal potential of species, marine currents’ regime and post-glacial re-colonization patterns, in shaping the distribution of genetic diversity of populations and species.
- Understanding the genetic basis of seagrass response diversity to environmental constrains and to stressors associated with human impacts and climate change. The analysis of gene expression in response to different environmental conditions is performed through RT-qPCR and RNA-Seq along natural environmental clines and in controlled conditions (mesocosms). A multidisciplinary approach that covers different levels of analysis (e.g. physiological, proteomic and transcrittomic) is ensured through numerous international collaborations. The results are interpreted in an ecological and evolutionary context.

Selected Publications

Pazzaglia J., Dattolo E., Ruocco M., Santillan Sarmiento A., Marin Guirao L., Procaccini G. 2023. DNA methylation dynamics in a coastal foundation seagrass species under abiotic stressors. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 290: 20222197.

Sogin E., Michellod D., Gruber-Vodicka H., Bourceau P., Geier B., Meier D., Seidel M., Ahmerkamp S., Schorn S., D’Angelo G., Procaccini G., Dubilier N., Liebeke M. 2022 Sugars dominate the seagrass rhizosphere. Nature Ecology and Evolution, 6(7):866-877

Nguyen H., Marín-Guirao L., Pernice M., Procaccini G. 2021 Seagrasses in an era of ocean warming: A review. Biological Reviews 96(5): 2009-2030

Pazzaglia J., Reusch T.B.H., Terlizzi A., Marin Guirao L., Procaccini G. 2021 Phenotypic plasticity under rapid global changes: the intrinsic force for future seagrasses survival. Evolutionary Applications, 14:1181–1201. DOI: 10.1111/eva.13212

Ruocco M., Entrambasaguas L., Dattolo E., Milito A., Marín-Guirao L, Procaccini G. 2021 A king and vassals tale: molecular signatures of clonal integration in seagrasses under chronic light shortage. Journal of Ecology, 109 (1): 294-312. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.13479

Nguyen H.M., Kim M., Ralph P.J., Marín-Guirao L., Pernice M., Procaccini G. 2020 Stress memory in seagrasses: first insight into the effects of thermal priming and the role of epigenetic modifications. Frontiers in Plant Science, 11: 494

Marín-Guirao L., Entrambasaguas L., Ruiz J.M., Procaccini G. 2019 Heat‐stress induced flowering can be a potential adaptive response to ocean warming for the iconic seagrass Posidonia oceanica. Molecular Ecology 28: 2486–2501.

Marín-Guirao L., Bernardeau-Esteller J., García-Muñoz R., Ramos A., Ontoria Y., Romero J., Pérez M., Ruiz J.M., Procaccini G. 2018 Carbon economy of Mediterranean seagrasses in response to thermal stress. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 135: 617-629

Marín-Guirao L., Entrambasaguas L., Dattolo E., Ruiz J.M., Procaccini G. 2017 Mechanisms of resistance to intense warming events in an iconic seagrass species. Frontiers in Plant Science, 8, 1142

Olsen J.L., Rouzé P., Verhelst B., Lin Y-C, Bayer T., Collen J., Dattolo E., De Paoli E., Dittami S., Maumus F., Michel G., Kersting A., Lauritano C., Lohaus R., Töpel M., Tonon T., Vanneste K., Amirebrahimi M., Brakel J., Boström C., Chovatia M., Grimwood J., Jenkins J.W., Jüterbock A., Mraz A., Stam W.T., Tice H., Bornberg-Bauer E., Green P.J., Pearson G.A., Procaccini G., Duarte C.M., Schmutz J., Reusch T.B.H., & van de Peer Y. 2016. Genome re-engineering from land to sea by the seagrass Zostera marina. Nature 530 (7590): 331-335.

Book chapters

Waycott M., Procaccini G., Les D., and Reusch THB 2006 Genetic studies in seagrasses: molecular systematics to population genetics and beyond. In: AWD Larkum, R.J Orth and C. Duarte (eds) Seagrass: Biology, Ecology and Conservation. Springer, The Netherlands

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