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Partner's general description and participants


University of Turin

Established at the University of Torino in 2002, the Centre of Competence for the innovation in the agro-environmental field, carries out basic and applied research, knowledge and technology transfer, life-long learning and communication on up-to-date topics in the agro-environmental and agro-food sectors. It has several national and international collaborations, with public Institutions and the private sector. The Centre possesses extensive facilities including laboratories, experimental fields and greenhouses.
AGROINNOVA is located on the University Campus of Grugliasco (Turin) and has modern and well-equipped laboratories, greenhouses and experimental fields. During the past years AGROINNOVA gained a broad expertise in the coordination of European projects as well as in knowledge and technology transfer in developing and emerging economies, such as China and India. Agroinnova is organised with groups working on specific topics:
The Plant Pathology Group (PPG) with extensive experience in biology and epidemiology of plant pathogens as well in their management.
The Plant Disease Management Group (PDMG) actively involved in disease management, and in the eradication of seed-and soilborne pathogens and soil disinfestation.
The Food safety and security group (FSG) experienced in the mycotoxin risk analysis, management and communication and works on the development of biocontrol agents and innovative control techniques against post-harvest diseases.
The Molecular Research Group (MRG) experienced in DNA molecular marker technologies applied to detection of plant pathogens and biocontrol agents, fungicide resistance, development of pathogen diagnostics, risk analysis studies, development of counter measures against crop bioterrorism.
The Transfer of Technology Group (TTG) operating both at national and international level.

Role and participation in the project

In this project, it will participate in all WPs, except WP5 and WP7.



Domenico Bertetti is Graduated in Agronomy and Forestry, Degree in Forestry Science, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Turin. Graduate technician at AGROINNOVA since 2011, previously researcher at Department “Valorizzazione e Protezione delle Risorse Agroforestali” (Exploitation and Protection of Agricultural and Forestry Resources) (Di.Va.P.R.A.) – Plant Pathology. Expertise in isolation, detection and “in vitro” culture of bacterial and fungal pathogens from plant tissue; sterilization of substrates, fertilizing, transplanting, pruning and greenhouse and soilless farming.


Prof. Maria Lodovica Gullino (F) is Full Professor in Plant Pathology, Director, Agroinnova, University of Torino. She is currently President of the Italian Society of Plant Pathology (SIPaV) and Immediate Past President of the International Society for Plant Pathology. She obtained several awards: the Novamont Prize on Sustainable development in 2002, the GAMMA DONNA special mention in 2004 by the Unione industriali of Torino, the Van Den Brande prize from the University of Gent (Belgium), the Paul Harris Fellowship from Rotary International in 2008, the 2010 UNICEF PIEMONTE Prize, the American Phytopathological Society Fellowship in 2011; the ITWIIN Special Prize Piemonte 2011 for innovation and in 2012 she received the Bogianen Prize from the Chamber of Commerce of Torino.
She is author of over 800 scientific papers and reviews, and 20 books in the field of disease management and biosecurity. Her research interests focus on plant disease management, biological and integrated control of diseases, seed health, crop biosecurity, effect of climate change on plant diseases, and sustainable agriculture. She has coordinated and managed hundreds of national and international research projects (including EU FP6, FP7, H2020, LIFE+ and TEMPUS grants) and High level Training Courses.


Monica Mezzalama is Vice-Director at AGROINNOVA, Associate professor at DISAFA (Department of agriculture, forestry and food sciences), University of Torino, Turin, Italy, from February 1, 2019 to date. Previously Senior Scientist, Plant Pathologist and Head, Seed Health Laboratory, CIMMYT, (2000-2019). Head of Seed Inspection and Distribution Unit, CIMMYT, Mexico (2004 -2008). Thirty-five years of international experience in plant pathology, with an emphasis on biological control, chemical control, epidemiology of foliar and root diseases on cereals, seed borne pathogens, phytosanitary management of germplasm movement and standardization of plant pathogen detection protocols. Responsibilities have included supervision of a seed health laboratory, seed multiplication sites and international seed distribution activities; preparation and implementation of protocols to avoid and detect the unintentional presence of transgenes in maize germplasm and quality management systems.


Grazia Pagano is project manager. Degree in Political Sciences specializing in EU and International Laws. She has more than 20-years-experience in designing and managing EU-funded projects (in particular R&I projects). She has also experience in the organization of dissemination and communication activities, such as scientific events and publications on non-specialised journals.


Davide Spadaro is Associate Professor of Plant Pathology at the University of Torino (Italy) and Researcher at AGROINNOVA. Member of the Teaching Committee of the Ph.D. School in Biological Sciences and Applied Biotechnologies, University of Torino. Visiting Professor at the Thammasat University (Thailand) and at the University of Edinburgh (UK). Research fellow at the University of Lleida – IRTA (Spain) and at the University of Bonn (Germany). Secretary of the SM Committee Postharvest of the International Society of Plant Pathology. Member of the Council of the Italian Society of Plant Pathology. Member of the Accademia di Agricoltura di Torino. Member of the WG Postharvest and WG Nuts of the Italian Society for Horticultural Science. His research spans from plant disease to sustainable crop protection, including biological control, from food safety (mycotoxins, human pathogens on plants) to food security (postharvest losses), from plant pathogen diagnostics to plant-pathogen interactions. He has worked on several European (Horizon 2020, FP7, COST Action, LIFE+, TEMPUS, Interreg IIIC, ASIA-LINK, EFSA) and national projects. He has published over 500 papers. He is author of 8 book chapters and 4 patents. His 95 papers on international Journals have been cited over 1,800 times, his H-index is 24.

EU H2020
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement n°773139.

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