School of Engineering and Digital Arts

In the last 9 years of my research career I have been developing mathematical models for biological systems.

My main research interest is the mechanics of the red blood cell, for which I have developed a coarse-grained molecular model of the entire cell membrane. The structural elements of cells are soft which implies that their mechanical properties may be quite different from conventional hard materials due to the relevance of entropy and thermal fluctuations. The model I implemented consists in coarse-graining the whole cell membrane and in simulating it via a finite-temperature molecular-dynamics method. The model allows quantitative comparison with experimental data and it facilitates the interpretation of elastic-property measurements obtained with experimental techniques like micropipette-aspiration and optical-tweezers. This model clarified a long-standing problem of the red blood cell mechanical properties, showing that it possible to have nanometersize thermal fluctuation with a finite value of the shear modulus.

In collaboration with the Institute of Reproduction and Developmental Biology (Imperial College London) I undertook a research project to understand the regulation of initiation of follicle growth in the mammalian ovary. Little is known about this mechanism, which is thought to be regulated by a network of signals. My work consisted in applying mathematical modeling to the spatial arrangement within the ovary in order to find relationships between follicles, surface epithelium and any other ovarian component, which can be involved in the mechanism of cell signaling. In particular I implemented a reaction diffusion model (Brownian dynamics) which helped understanding how growth factors production and receptor expression influence cell-signaling activity within the ovary. I am also using this model to investigate how morphogen concentration that orchestrates patterns formation in Drosophila embryo is affected by reaction rates and the geometry of the system. I am also using the model to interpret patch-clamp amperometry experiments in animal and human tissues.

During my first Post-doc project at Imperial College (London, 2001-2003) I implemented a computer model to study the role played by the space charge accumulation in dielectric breakdown. Over time insulators trap charge carriers to form a ‘space charge’ thought to be implicated in the breakdown. My work aimed at clarifying the contribution of electrons to space charge trapping and detrapping. In particular with my model I could predict the current voltage characteristics and space charge distribution of polyethylene from the electron trap distribution.

In my Ph.D. work at Swinburne University (Melbourne, 1998-2001) I used molecular simulation to investigate the role of three-body interatomic potentials in noble gas systems for two distinct phenomena: phase equilibria and shear flow. My results demonstrate that three-body interactions play an important role in the overall interatomic interactions of noble gases. This is shown by the excellent agreement between my simulation results and the experimental data for both equilibrium and non-equilibrium systems.

Dr. Marcelli is also working on the swallowing system and is a member of the Kent Speech and Swallowing Research Team.

Contact Information

Address

Room 1.08
Jennison Building
University of Kent
Canterbury
Kent
CT2 7NT

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Publications

View a full list in the Kent Academic Repository

Article:
Skodras, Angelos, Marcelli, Gianluca. 2015, Computer-Generated Ovaries to Assist Follicle Counting Experiments. PLOS ONE
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Fraternali, F., Marcelli, Gianluca. 2012, A Multiscale Approach to the Elastic Moduli of Biomembrane. Biomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology
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Fraternali, F., Lorenz, C.D., Marcelli, Gianluca. 2012, On the estimation of the curvatures and bending rigidity of membrane networks via a local maximum-entropy approach. Journal of Computational Physics
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Patel, Bhavik Anil. 2010, Understanding Changes in Uptake and Release of Serotonin from Gastrointestinal Tissue using a Novel Electroanalytical Approach. Analyst
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da Silva-Buttkus, P., Marcelli, Gianluca, Franks, S., Stark, J., Hardy, K.. 2009, Inferring Biological Mechanisms from Spatial Analysis: Prediction of a Local Inhibitor in the Ovary. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
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Hale, John P., Marcelli, Gianluca, Parker, Kim H., Winlove, C. Peter, Petrov, Peter G.. 2009, Red Blood Cell Thermal Fluctuations: Comparison Between Experiment and Molecular Dynamics Simulations. Soft Matter
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Marcelli, Gianluca. 2007, Boundary homogenization for spherical surfaces randomly covered with nonoverlapping partially absorbing disks. The Journal of chemical physics
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Hale, J. P., Marcelli, Gianluca, Parker, K. H., Winlove, C. Peter, Petrov, Peter G.. 2007, Advanced red blood cell thermal fluctuation analysis: a new method to quantify membrane elasticity. European Biophysics Journal
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Parker, Kim H., Winlove, C. Peter. 2005, Thermal Fluctuations of Red Blood Cell Membrane via a Constant-Area Particle-Dynamics Model. Biophysical Journal
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Todd, Billy Dean, Sadus, Richard J.. 2004, Erratum: On the relationship between two-body and three-body interactions from nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulation. The Journal of Chemical Physics
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Tenenbaum, Alexander. 2003, Quantumlike short-time behavior of a classical crystal. Physical review. E, Statistical, nonlinear, and soft matter physics
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Cubero, D., Marcelli, Gianluca, Quirke, N.. 2002, Electronic states of excess electrons in polyethylene. IEEE Annual Report Conference on Electrical Insulation and Dielectric Phenomena
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Meunie, M, Quirke, N. 2002, Electronic Traps in Polymer Insulators: I (V) characteristics. IEEE Annual Report Conference on Electrical Insulation and Dielectric Phenomena
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Anta, JA, Marcelli, Gianluca, Meunier, M, Quirke, N. 2002, Models of electron trapping and transport in polyethylene: Current--voltage characteristics. Journal of Applied Physics
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Todd, Billy Dean, Sadus, Richard J.. 2001, The strain rate dependence of shear viscosity, pressure and energy from two-body and three-body interactions. Fluid Phase Equilibria
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Vogt, Patrick S., Liapine, Rail, Kirchner, Barbara, Dyson, Anthony J., Huber, Hanspeter, Marcelli, Gianluca, Sadus, Richard J.. 2001, Molecular simulation of the vapour - liquid phase coexistence of neon and argon using ab initio potentials. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Todd, Billy Dean, Sadus, Richard J.. 2001, Analytic dependence of the pressure and energy of an atomic fluid under shear.. Physical review. E, Statistical, nonlinear, and soft matter physics
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Ge, Jialin, Marcelli, Gianluca, Todd, Billy Dean, Sadus, Richard J.. 2001, Energy and pressure of shearing fluids at different state points.. Physical review. E, Statistical, nonlinear, and soft matter physics
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Sadus, Richard J. 2001, Three-body interactions and the phase equilibria of mixtures. HIGH TEMPERATURES HIGH PRESSURES
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Todd, B. D., Sadus, Richard J.. 2001, On the relationship between two-body and three-body interactions from nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulation. The Journal of Chemical Physics
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Sadus, Richard J. 2000, A link between the two-body and three-body interaction energies of fluids from molecular simulation. The Journal of Chemical Physics
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Sadus, Richard J.. 1999, Molecular simulation of the phase behavior of noble gases using accurate two-body and three-body intermolecular potentials. The Journal of Chemical Physics
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Conference item:
Henderson, Martin, Smithard, David, Kelly, Stephen W., Marcelli, Gianluca. 2015, The use of Gyrometry to correctly interpret accelerometry in dysphagia. 5th ESSD Congress - Swallowing Disorders: from compensation to recovery
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Wei, Mengyang, Leon-Ledesma, Miguel A., Marcelli, Gianluca, Spurgeon, Sarah K.. 2015, Dynamic network model of banking system stability. 21st Computing in Economics and Finance Conference - CEF 2015
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Wei, Mengyang, Leon-Ledesma, Miguel A., Marcelli, Gianluca, Spurgeon, Sarah K.. 2015, Study of banking system stability using differential equations. 5th International Conference of the Financial Engineering and Banking Society
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Nicholls, Benjamin, Henderson, Martin, Marcelli, Gianluca, Ang, Chee Siang. 2015, 3D visualisation of the human anatomy for biofeedback therapy in swallowing disorder. Centre for Behaviour Change (CBC) Conference 2015, Harnessing Digital Technology for Health Behaviour Change
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Henderson, Martin, Nicholls, Ben, Ang, Chee Siang, Smithard, David, Marcelli, Gianluca. 2015, A Digital System to Quantify Eating Behaviour. Centre for Behaviour Change (CBC) Conference 2015, Harnessing Digital Technology for Health Behaviour Change
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Marcelli, Gianluca, Patel, Bhavik Anil. 2008, Theoretical modelling to understand the neurotransmission mechanism in the gastrointestinal tract. 30th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society,
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Other:
Marcelli, Gianluca, Todd, Billy D, Sadus, Richard J. 2002, Beyond traditional effective intermolecular potentials and pairwise interactions in molecular simulation.
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Marcelli, Gianluca. 2001, The Role of Three-Body Interactions on the Equilibrium and Non-Equilibrium Properties of Fluids from Molecular Simulation. Technology
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School of Engineering and Digital Arts, Jennison Building, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NT

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Last Updated: 30/08/2017