Francesco Lescai

Medical Biotechnologist, with an expertise in statistical genetics and computational biology. I'm Head of Bioinformatics at NIBSC, Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency in UK.

I have a broad range of experiences within academia and in industry, and have contributed to science policy expert groups as well as to initiatives for responsible innovation.

I'm always happy to build common projects in those areas, and work for the advancement of precision medicine and public health.

What I Do

Bioinformatics

I've began building NGS analysis pipelines when the genome sequencing revolution started. I have coded for a diverse range of applications spanning from Human genetics to metagenomics. I am interested in developing deep learning tools to advance the understanding of our genome.

Precision Medicine

I have worked for a translational genomics centre, helping clinicians improving diagnoses with genome analysis. I have led initiatives to understand the dynamics that make Precision Medicine successful and a game changing field. I am interested in developing new tools to further advance the role data analytics have in this sector.

Innovative Learning

I have a diploma in teaching methods in higher education, and developed considerable experience in designing teaching/learning experiences on a wide range of topics. I love to employ the latest technologies to design rewarding learning tools and contribute building skills for professionals of the future.

Responsible Innovation

I have been engaged in initiatives for science and society since I was a student, and deeply believe in a responsible approach to research and innovation. I have recently coordinated a EU funded project to develop tools helping industries to innovate responsibly, and integrate participatory and co-design approaches in their innovation process.

Testimonials

Resume

19 Years of Experience

Experience

2019 - Current
Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency, NIBSC

Section Leader, Head of Bioinformatics

I lead the bioinformatics team responsible for the analysis of the Institute’s next generation sequencing data. This includes support and coordination of genomics and statistical analysis projects, in a wide range of areas spanning from Human genetics to immunology, microbiology and metagenomics. I contribute to the planning and development of biocomputing facilities, both on premises and on the cloud, and I represent the institute externally with the relevant stakeholders.

2017 - 2019
QIAGEN Bioinformatics

Senior Scientist, Biomedical Genomics

I was part of the Global Product Management team for the CLC Genomics Workbench and Genomics Server; I was responsible for the development of scientific content related to QIAGEN bioinformatics portfolio in the biomedical sector, and for leading scientific collaborations with other institutions and key opinion leaders.

2013 - 2018
Department of Biomedicine, Aarhus University

Associate Professor, Human Genomics and Bioinformatics

My work has been focused on large-scale data analysis of next  generation sequencing in psychiatric  disorders (schizophrenia, depression,  bipolar  disorder,  autism).

I have been responsible of the development of data analysis pipelines for genome sequences of large cohorts  of patients and  healthy individuals, and for the deployment of the analyses on different high performance computing infrastructures.

2011 - 2013
University College London, Institute of Child Health

Senior Research Associate in Genome Analysis

Leader of Bioinformatics at the Centre for Translational Genomics “GOSgene".   Leader of the NGS Consortium at the University High Performance Computing cluster  “Legion”.

2010 - 2011
University College London, Division of Research Strategy

Research Associate in Genome Analysis

Development of the analysis pipeline for exome sequencing,  SNPs and INDELs calling, annotation and statistics.

As part  of UCL Genomics, I have collaborated  with several research groups to provide the expertise in statistical and bioinformatic analysis of NGS data. I have participated to the Wellcome Trust  Case Control  Consortium for the analysis of one of the WTCC2  genome-wide association  studies.

Education

2002 - 2006
University of Bologna

Ph.D. in Experimental Pathology

PhD thesis entitled: Genetic determinants of human longevity: hypothesis-driven investigation through new technologies.
Supervisor: Prof. Claudio Franceschi
External reviewers: Professor Eline Slagboom (NL) and Professor Stefan Schreiber (D)

2006
European Association of Higher Education in Biotechnology, Edinburgh

European Doctorate in Biotechnology (EDBT)

1995 - 2000
Faculty of Medicine, University of Bologna

Laurea in Medical Biotechnology

First class honours, cum laude.
Thesis in Immunology II, on "Genetic Risk Factors in Alzheimer’s Disease: studies on polymorphisms of interleukin 6 gene".

1990 - 1995
Liceo Scientifico G. Marconi, Grosseto

Scientific School Leaving Certificate

School Diploma with score of 60/60

Policy and Communities

2018 - Current
Regional Government, Regione Lombardia, Italy

Member, Regional Forum for Research and Innovation

The Forum is an advisory body to the Regional Government on Research and Innovation policies.

As member, I am contributing in particular on the topics of Genomics, large scale data analysis and computing, population-scale screening and how the concept of “responsible research and innovation” applies to public policies on these subjects, especially when involving industry.

2009 - 2018
Association of the Italian Biotechnologists (ANBI)

President, Collegio dei Probiviri

Chair of the body regulating the code of conduct and bioethics for the national Association.

2007 - 2018
European Federation of Biotechnologists (EFB)

Executive Board Member

2016 - 2017
European Commission, Brussels

Rapporteur, Expert Group on Revision of the Bieconomy Strategy

2011
European Commission, DG Research and Innovation, Brussels

Member of the Advisory Committee on Skills for Bioeconomy 2020

2007 - 2009
Young European Biotech Network

Chairman

2001 - 2007
Association of the Italian Biotechnologists (ANBI)

President

2005 - 2007
Committee for Biotechnology and Biosafety, Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Rome

Member, Expert Group on Education

Coding Skills

Anything in R

90%

Perl

80%

Python

70%

Bash

75%

HTML / CSS

80%

Management Skills

Project Management Tools

95%

Budget planning and management

90%

Jira & Trello

90%

Portfolio

My Works
Exome Sequencing analysis in Medical Contexts

Exome Sequencing analysis in Medical Contexts

Teaching
BIOPOP

BIOPOP

Projects
SMART-map

SMART-map

Projects

Contact

Get in Touch

London

francesco at lescai.eu

How Can I Help You?