Andrea Domenighetti, PhD

Andrea Domenighetti, PhD

Research Scientist
Assistant Professor, Dept. of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Northwestern University
Assistant Professor in PM&R at Northwestern University
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About Me

As a research scientist at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab (SRAlab), I aim to identify new mechanisms relating to muscle tissue and muscle stem cell dysfunction, as well as genetic and epigenetic modifications affecting muscle and nerve plasticity in patients with spinal cord and brain injury. Before joining the SRAlab in 2015, I trained and worked in leading academic Institutes around the world, including the University of California in San Diego (UCSD), the University of Lausanne (Switzerland) and the University of Melbourne (Australia). During these years, I developed expertise in molecular and cellular mechanisms associated with cardiovascular diseases and skeletal muscle dysfunction, using animal models, isolated cells, electrophysiology, video imaging, functional genomic and molecular biology. My lab is fully integrated into the PM&R Department at Northwestern University and the Biologics Lab at the SRAlab. My current research includes the development of therapies to cure muscle contractures in children with cerebral palsy, and to investigate genetic or epigenetic biomarkers associated with disease progression and therapy outcomes.


Shirley Ryan AbilityLab

26th Floor

355 East Erie

Chicago, IL 60611

Education & Training



    1994 - 1998
    Biology, University of Geneva - Switzerland
    1999 - 2004
    Physiology, University of Melbourne - Australia
    2004 - 2006
    Pharmacology & Toxicology, University of Lausanne - Switzerland

Recent Publications

Loss of myogenic potential and fusion capacity of muscle stem cells isolated from contractured muscle in children with cerebral palsy.
Domenighetti AA, Mathewson MA, Pichika R, Sibley LA, Zhao L, Chambers HG, Lieber RL
doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00351.2017
Management of Cardiac Involvement Associated With Neuromuscular Diseases: A Scientific Statement From the American Heart Association.
Feingold B, Mahle WT, Auerbach S, Clemens P, Domenighetti AA, Jefferies JL, Judge DP, Lal AK, Markham LW, Parks WJ, Tsuda T, Wang PJ, Yoo SJ, American Heart Association Pediatric Heart Failure Committee of the Council on Cardiovascular Disease in the Young; Council on Clinical Cardiology; Council on Cardiovascular Radiology and Intervention; Council on Functional Genomics and Translational Biology; and Stroke Council.
doi: 10.1161/CIR.0000000000000526
Cullin E3 Ligase Activity Is Required for Myoblast Differentiation.
Blondelle J, Shapiro P, Domenighetti AA, Lange S
doi: 10.1016/j.jmb.2017.02.012

Honors & Awards

  • Research fellowship
    Roche Research Foundation, 1999
  • International Postgraduate Research Scholarship (IPRS) and Melbourne International Research Scholarship (MIRS)
    The University of Melbourne, 2000
  • Young Researcher/Doctoral fellowship
    Swiss National Science Foundation, 2000
  • W.G. Nayler Prize
    International Society for Heart Research, 2002
  • Excellence Award in Cardiovascular Research
    Pfizer - Switzerland, 2007
  • Advanced postdoctoral fellowship
    Swiss National Science Foundation, 2006

Professional Affiliations

  • Fellow
    American Heart Association (AHA), 2007
  • Member
    Società Ticinese di Scienze Naturali (STSN), 2008
  • Member
    American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB), 2009
  • Member
    Orthopedic Research Society (ORS), 2015
  • Member
    Society For Muscle Biology, 2016
  • Member
    University of Geneva ex-alumni association, 2010

Research Interests

  • Skeletal muscles growth and (re)generation in children with cerebral palsy and stroke patients
  • Muscle stem cells biology
  • Epigenetic mechanisms of muscles homeostasis

My Lab

Muscle & Cell Biology Lab

Research group using tools from molecular biology, cell biology, histology, genetics, experimental and clinical models to translate our understanding of diseases that primarily affect muscles.

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