Dr. Lucas Tricoli
Dr. Tricoli received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Maryland in 2013. His thesis work motivated an interest in postdoctoral research involving clinically related disease models utilizing primary tissue culture methodologies. He initially made seminal discoveries regarding the role of p53 in prostate cancer cell death by incorporating experiments involving novel, patient-derived primary prostate cells, termed conditionally reprogrammed cells (CRCs). After mastering the primary CRC culture technique, he successful developed a rapidly established, medium throughput primary 3D culture model for prostate cancer research, with broad applications to other cell types. Dr. Tricoli took a greater interest in therapeutic application to the developed models and merged clinically relevant primary cell culture techniques with mechanistic miRNA analysis and applied it to personalized medical research in the area of health disparities research. After successful model development and mechanistic studies in cancer research, Dr. Tricoli took a significant interest in applying his experience in disease studies and bringing them to gene therapy. The gene therapy tools and vectors the Rivella lab has developed for Thalessemias are unique and highly effective. Dr. Tricoli’s current focus is to broaden and strengthen the already existing gene therapy techniques in the laboratory and apply them to other diseases. Currently a deadly hereditary lysosomal storage disease, Metachromatic Leukodystrophy (MLD), is the major focus of his work.