Istituto Italiano
di Tecnologia (IIT)

Contact Us

The Plasmon nanotechnologies group in IIT develops novel nanostructures and photonic-plasmonic nanodevices for bio applications.

The main goal is to exploit advanced nanofabrication techniques for controlling the properties and the response of materials at the nanoscale. Particularly, we cover all of the aspects of the research spanning from the design to the fabrication, characterization and practical application of nano-bio sensors. The main activities concern the application of nanodevices to the study of complex bio-molecules, neurons, and cardiomyocytes.


Giada Rita La Gaia

Giada La Gala was born in Italy. She studied physics at the University of Pavia, obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in 2013 with a final research project about Raman spectroscopy applied to forensic sciences.

She later obtained a Master’s degree in Condensed Matter Physics from the same University in 2016. During the Master’s program she spent five months at Utrecht University following the European Erasmus+ study exchange program. For the final research project, she spent one year at the NWO institute AMOLF in Amsterdam working in the Photonic Forces group of Professor Ewold Verhagen in the field of quantum optomechanics.

In 2016, Giada started as a PhD researcher in the same group. During her PhD she presented her results in international conferences and advanced schools (in USA, Israel, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, Greece and Italy). She graduated in 2020. Since 2021 she works as a postdoctoral fellow at Italian Institute of Technology - Genova, Morego. Here she works at the intersection between nanophotonics, microfluidics and molecular biology.  She is independently active as an organizer of cultural and artistic initiatives connecting art and science.

Erick Ulin-Avila

Dr Erick Ulin-Avila is currently a Postdoctoral fellow in Plasmonic Nanotechnologies at IIT, Genova where he works on ultrafast Raman spectroscopy. Previously, he was a Postdoctoral fellow in the Advanced Photonics Research Laboratory at the Technion's Faculty of Electrical Engineering where he studied graphene as an optical-fibre interface for the spectroscopy of aqueous media. Erick graduated with a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley in the areas of MEMS, Nanomaterials and Nanophotonics under the supervision of Prof. Xiang Zhang, focusing on plasmonics, metamaterials and graphene-based photonic devices.  As a graduate student researcher at UC Berkeley, Erick also investigated electric field noise from metallic surface-electrode ion microtraps for scalable quantum information processing under the supervision of Prof. Haeffner in the Physics Department. In addition, he worked on the fabrication of two-dimensional arrays of nano-josephson junctions based on high-transition temperature (Tc) materials for superconducting quantum interference devices under the supervision of Prof. Robert Dynes in the Materials Sciences Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Erick holds minors in Nonlinear Control Systems and Electrodynamics from the Mechanical and Electrical Engineering Departments and M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering with a focus on time-lapsed Scanning Tunneling Microscopy based diffusion studies under the supervision of Prof. Ludwig Bartels in the Chemistry Department at UC Riverside. He holds a B.Sc. in Digital Systems and Control Systems in the Electronics Engineering Department at Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana, Azcapotzalco (UAM-A) in Mexico.


ProID is a research project funded from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation actions (RIA) scheme under grant agreement no. 964363.

© proteineID PROJECT