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University of Padova (UNIPD)

Dating back to 1222, the University of Padova (UNIPD) is one of the leading Universities in Italy and has a long tradition of scientific excellence. UNIPD offers its students 32 departments, 37 doctoral degree courses and 44 research and service centers across the spectrum of sciences, medicine, social sciences and humanities, with about 2,300 professors and researchers employed.

UNIPD participated in 196 European Research projects within the 7th Framework Programme and in about 40 projects from other EU funds, accounting for more than 70 Million Euro. It currently manages 121 Horizon 2020 actions for a total budget of more than 45 Million Euro. UNIPD has specific expertise on the management of European projects: it coordinated 40 FP7 projects and it has suitable structures and resources dedicated to this end; in particular the International Research Office is a reference point for departments and research centres that intend to apply for EU funds for research projects.

The work will be carried out in the Department of Woman and Child’s Health (DWCH) at the University of Padova. DWCH is a regional hub for pediatric and diabetes care and is part of the research network for diabetes care of the University of Padova, in joint with the Department of Information Engineering (DEI). DWCH will serve as Coordinating Institution at the University of Padova.

Claudio Cobelli


Claudio Cobelli is Emeritus Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Padova. He is the founder of the bioengineering group when he joined in 1981 UNIPD from the Institute of System Science and Biomedical Engineering, National Research Council, Italy. He pioneered the use of mathematical models to describe glucose homeostasis in humans. His research activity has largely focused on developing glucose minimal (parsimonious) models of healthy, prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes pathophysiology to measure crucial parameters otherwise not accessible to direct measurement from in vivo clinical tests, also using tracers. These models are now used worldwide to determine the cause of hyperglycemia in people with diabetes of diverse backgrounds and to target and assess the effectiveness of novel therapies. In the last 10 years he also worked on Type 1 diabetes by developing the glucose maximal (large-scale) model of Type 1 diabetes to perform in silico clinical trials which has been accepted in 2008 by FDA as a substitute to animal trials for the preclinical testing of certain insulin treatments, an unprecedented event. Also central in the last years is the research on closed-loop control of glucose in Type 1 diabetes (artificial pancreas) with a focus on glucose sensors, control algorithms and clinical trials. I created an algorithmically “smart” continuos glucose monitoring (CGM) sensor, which on December 2017 FDA accepted for non-adjunctive use, and subsequently, in March 2018, Medicare announced criteria for system reimbursement to all Type 1 and Type 2 people on intensive insulin therapy. Artificial pancreas research was accelerated thanks to the FDA accepted Type 1 diabetes glucose maximal model: he was able to do the first artificial pancreas trial in humans in 2008 in the hospital after 3 months of the IDE granted by FDA solely on the basis of in silico testing of the safety and efficacy of the designed system. His group was also the first to demonstrate the feasibility of outpatient ambulatory closed-loop for 48 hrs. employing a “wearable” smartphone-based artificial pancreas prototype.

Outpatient trials have now month duration and he contributed to improve the control algorithms to render them person-specific, adaptive and fault tolerant which is critical, given the large inter-individual variability, for patient safety and treatment effectiveness in long-lasting free-living condition.

His research is currently supported by NIH, JDRF and European Community. He has published 564 papers in internationally refereed journals, co-authored 8 books, holds10 patents with an h-index of 83, citations 27951 (Scopus) and 104, citations 46154 (Google). Complete list of Papers:

From 2000 to 2009 he has been Chairman of the Graduate Program in Biomedical Engineering. From 2000 to 2011 he has been Chairman of the Ph.D. Program in Bioengineering at the University of Padova. He is currently Associate Editor of IEEE Transaction on Biomedical Engineering and Journal of Diabetes Science & Technology. He is on the Editorial Board of Diabetes and DiabetesTechnology&Therapeutics. He has been Chairman (1999-2004) of the Italian Biomedical Engineering Group, Chairman (1990-1993 & 1993-1996) of IFAC TC on Modeling and Control of Biomedical Systems and member of the IEEE EMBS AdCom Member (2008-2009). He was recently elected as one of the 30 members of the Consiglio Superiore di Sanita’, Italian Ministry of Health, 2019-2022.        

In 2010 he received the Diabetes Technology Artificial Pancreas Research Award. He is Fellow of IEEE and BMES. In December 2018 he has been nominated for the Harold Hamm International Prize for Biomedical Research in Diabetes.

Research Group

Gianluigi Pillonetto

Gianluigi Pillonetto, PhD received the Laurea degree in Computer Science Engineering cum laude from the University of Padova, Italy, in 1998. He obtained his Ph.D. degree in Biomedical Engineering from the Polytechnic of Milan, Italy, in 2002. He is currently Associate Professor of Automatic Control and System Identification at the Department of Information Engineering of University of Padova.

He is a world leading researcher in dynamic system identification, a fundamental subfield of Automatic Control. He has published 101 referred conference papers and 72 papers in the most important peer-reviewed international journals of Control Systems and Bioengineering. Among others, 33 papers are published in Automatica and 6 in IEEE Transactions of Automatic Control, two of the most prestigious Automatic Control Journals. He also serves as an Associate Editor for Automatica and IEEE Transactions of Automatic Control. He formulated new techniques based on stochastic regularization that outperform the classical techniques. To date Scopus reports 2660 citations, with an h-index of 25. His work has had a great influence in the System Identification community and, for his achievements, he has received the 2017 Automatica Prize, an award assigned every three years for outstanding contributions to the theory and/or practice of control engineering/science, documented in a paper published in the IFAC Journal Automatica. He also obtained in 2003 the National Bioengineering Group “Paolo Durst 2003 award” for the best Italian Ph.D. thesis in Bioengineering He is 2018 Plenary Speaker at the IFAC Symposium on System Identification, the most important conference in the System Identification field. He is an IEEE Fellow since 2020 for contributions to System Identification.

Alfonso Galderisi

Alfonso Galderisi MD, PhD – is Assistant Professor in Pediatrics at the University of Padova. He received his medical degree from the Second University of Naples (Italy) in 2010 after the completion of a 6 months internship at Harvard Medical School working on Type 1 diabetes complications.

Therefore, he completed his residency in Pediatrics and fellowship in Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetology, as well as a PhD in developmental science, at the University of Padova. He did his post-doctoral fellowhsip at Yale University working on pivotal trials on hybrid closed loop and inhaled insulin in type 1 diabetes. He received the ISPAD fellowship for pediatric diabetes research (2016), the Albert Renold – EFSD grant (2014) and the Patterson Foundation Award (2017). Dr Galderisi has conducted a pivotal study in preterm neonates using CGM and control algorithm defining a new approach to neonatal hypoglycemia (Pediatrics, 2017), that has influenced the subsequent work in the field. He served as PI for clinical trials using CGM (NCT02583776 and NCT04347590) in critical pediatric patients. His scientific activity includes 44 papers in leading peer-reviewed international journals.

Carlo Giaquinto

Carlo Giaquinto, MD – is Full Professor of Paediatrics at the Department for Woman’s and Child’s Health of the University of Padova (since 2016). He has been Chief of the Paediatric Clinical Research and Trials Unit of the Hospital/University of Padova (2011 to 2014), and current president of the Penta Foundation for pediatric research.

Prof Giaquinto has been Honorary Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Paediatric Epidemiology and Biostatistics of the Institute of Child Health in London (2002-2010), Chair of the Education Committee of the European Society Paediatric Infectious Disease (ESPID) (2006-2010), Member of the EMEA Paediatric Expert Group (2004-2006) and WHO part time Consultant and advisor on paediatric HIV and other infections (Zika, SARS AMR etc  (since 1989)

He is Author/co-author of more than 370 publications in peer-reviewed (H-index 54 and almost 10,000 citations) and invited as speaker at about 300 conferences and international workshops across the world.  In the last 25 years Carlo Giaquinto has been Project leader/coordinator of more than 20 EU funded projects from Biomed II through FP7, DG SANCO, H2020, EDCTP, IMI1 and IMI2 (see ongoing/recent projects enclosed ) mainly on Paediatric Infectious Diseases and Paediatric Medicine. He has also been PI/Co-Pi of a large number of Investigator Initiated Studies funded by Industries or other research funding organizations.

Alberto Dalla Libera

Alberto Dalla Libera, PhD received the degree in Control Engineering from the University of Padova, Italy, in 2015. He obtained his Ph.D. degree in Information Engineering from the University of Padova, Italy, in 2020. In 2018, he spent 4 months as an intern at Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories (MERL), Cambridge, MA.

In 2020, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the University Padova, involved in a research project sponsored by MERL. His research interests are System Identification, Machine Learning, Control, with applications to robotics systems. His scientific activity includes 3 papers in leading peer-reviewed international journals and 6 referred conference papers.


  • University of Padova will coordinate the project, leader of WP7 (Management, exploitation and dissemination) and lead WP3 (ip control algorithm)
  • Develop the intraperitoneal MPC algorithm for hormone delivery
  • Develop an individualized patient-specific model based on kernel- based system identification method
  • Develop in collaboration with CHUM the adaptive algorithm
  • Develop in collaboration with CHUM the extension of the FDA accepted T1D simulator by including ip sensing and ip hormone delivery
  • Porting in collaboration with SSSA on the pump the ip individualized, adaptive control algorithm on the pump

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