Physics and Chemistry of Biological Systems
Michele Allegra
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Research interests

I am a postdoctoral researcher in the Molecular and Statistical Biophysics sector of the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA), Trieste, where I joined prof. Alessandro Laio's group in January 2015.

In our group, we are currently exploring several applications of a new clustering method to biological data sets. My research activity focuses on using this method to achieve new insights in the analysis of brain imaging data. In particular, our method is very promising for the sake of detecting temporal coherence in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data beyond the scope of previous studies.

Before joining SISSA, I earned a Master degree and a PhD in Physics, both from the University of Turin. During my PhD I worked in collaboration with the Quantum Science Lab at the I.S.I. Foundation in Turin, under the supervision of Dr. Paolo Giorda, and I spent one semester at the Research Laboratory of Electronics at M.I.T. in Cambridge, Massachusetts, under the supervision of Prof. Seth Lloyd. As a PhD student, I was mostly interested in the links between measurements, correlations and decoherence in quantum mechanics. My global approach was to use several information-theoretic quantifiers to analyze the effects of decoherence in physically relevant scenarios, and assess the amount of correlations and coherence present in different systems. Upon completion of my PhD, I decided to move towards more biologically-oriented research, complying with a strong fascination for biology. Although quantum information and neuroscience look very different, these two fields actually share many basic tools, including core concepts of statistics and information theory.

You can find the list of publications with the link below, or check the personal webpage (if apply):