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Stefano Rivella, PhD
Stefano Rivella

Dr. Rivella is an expert in the pathophysiology of erythroid and iron disorders and in the generation of lentiviral vectors for the cure of hemoglobinopathies. He also investigates additional disorders such as anemia of inflammation and hemochromatosis.



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Dr. Rivella's research program centers on the pathophysiology of erythroid and iron disorders and in the generation of lentiviral vectors for the cure of hemoglobinopathies. Specifically, he generated the first adult mouse model of ß-thalassemia major and contributed to the creation of the first lentiviral vector that corrected the hemoglobin synthesis in mice affected by ß-thalassemia. This led the way to gene therapy clinical trials. He is also generating new lentiviral vectors for the treatment of ß-thalassemia and sickle cell anemia. He showed correction of the hemoglobin synthesis defect in mice as well as in patient cells in vitro, as a preclinical test for potential gene therapy trials.

In addition, Dr. Rivella investigates disorders like anemia of inflammation, which is a form of anemia associated with many inflammatory disorders, and hemochromatosis, which is associated with abnormal iron absorption from the diet. He also studies polycythemia vera, which is associated with an excessive production of red cells.

Dr. Rivella has been providing expertise on mouse models important for red blood cell and macrophage biology as well as inflammation and iron metabolism to many U.S. laboratories and pharmaceutical companies interested in learning these subjects or testing new drugs.

Education and Training

BS, University of Pavia (Genetics), 1990

PhD, University of Pavia (Genetics), 1999

Fellowship, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (Molecular Biology), 2002

Titles and Academic Titles


Kwame Ohene-Frempong Endowed Chair in Pediatric Hematology

Professor of Pediatrics

Professional Memberships

International BioIron Society, 2006-

American Society of Hematology, 2006-

American Society of Hematology Committee on Iron and Heme, 2012-

NIH-NIDDK KUH (Kidney-Urology-Hematology), 2013-

International Society for Stem Cell Research, 2014-2015


Professional Awards

Travel Grant Award, International Society of Experimental Hematology (ISEH), 2002, 2004, 2005

The T. Ray Bradley First Prize for New Investigator Award, ISEH, 2002

Travel Grant Award, American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy, 2002

Travel Grant Award, International BioIron Society, 2007

Sultan bin Khalifa International Thalassemia Award, Innovative Medical Research Award-Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 2015

Publication Highlights