Graduated in Biology at University of Bari (1983), she started her research activity on the production, isolation, biological and chemical characterization of bio-molecules produced by bacteria of agro-food interest and on the microbiological aspects of food quality by studying microbial populations affecting food shelf life and by applying bacteria and/or their metabolites to improve process and products. As principal investigator and /or coordinator of European (WP leader), national and regional R&D projects, she is currently coordinating activities on microbial populations spoiling foods (particularly sporeformers in bakery products) and on the selection and application of beneficial bacteria to increase the competitiveness of foods by improving their nutritional and functional quality. In cooperation with gastro-enterologists she organized nutritional trials aimed to ascertain the efficacy of functional foods in contributing to gastro-intestinal health.
She acted as expert for: European Commission, General Secretariat for Research & Technology of Greece, Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research, Italian Ministry for Productive Activities and for Italian Regional Bodies.
She is CNR-DISBA representativeat i) Italian co-location center of the FoodNexus Consortium, working to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in Food across Europe, built to participate to the Food4Future KIC call; 2) National Cluster Agrifood Road map Line 1 Health&Wellbeing.
She published more than 150 refereed publications and patents and was qualified as Full Professor (2014-2020) by the National Scientific Qualification (07/F2-Agr. Microbiol.).