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Francesca Gilli, MS, PhD

Associate Professor of Neurology
Associate Professor of Microbiology and Immunology

Microbiology and Immunology

2000 MS (Medical Biotechnology), Università degli Studi di Torino (Italy)
2005 PhD (Human Biology), Università degli Studi di Torino (Italy)
2008-2011 Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine Fellowship, Università degli Studi di Torino (Italy)

Neuroscience Center at Dartmouth


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Contact Information

DHMC, HB 7999
1 Medical Center Drive
554W Borwell
Lebanon NH 03756

Office: (603)650-2633
Phone: (603) 650-5433 (Lab)
Email: Francesca.Gilli@dartmouth.edu

Professional Interests

Dr. Gilli’s principal research interest is understanding the cellular and molecular pathways that contribute to neuroinflammation and central nervous system (CNS)-related tissue damage in Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The goal of Dr. Gilli’s current research is to elucidate how inflammation contributes to neurodegeneration and disability progression. The overall intention of this work is to identify new therapeutic targets or strategies that will improve our ability to manage progressive MS as well as other neurodegenerative diseases.

Grant Information

Genzyme-Sanofi: 2019-2020 -(PI) Antiviral effects of Teriflunomide.
Italian MS Society 2018/R/6: 2019-2020 -(PI) Sex effects on intrathecal humoral inflammation and disease progression in multiple sclerosis.
Hitchcock Foundation Scholar Award: 2017-2019 – (PI) lntrathecal B-cell response pattern for improved diagnosis and management of progressive Multiple Sclerosis.
Hitchcock Foundation Pilot Award: 2016-2017 – (PI) Plasmalemma vesicle associated protein (PV1) as a novel target in neuroinflammation.
Biogen Idec Research Grant: 2014-2016 – (PI) Interaction of PEG-IFNβ with Antibodies to Native IFNβ
Hitchcock Foundation Pilot Award: 2014-2015 – (PI) Toward reliable biomarkers in MS: Microarray analysis of spinal cord gene expression in animal models of Multiple Sclerosis.

Courses Taught

Lecturer - Scientific basis of diseases 1 (PEMM 101)
Lecturer - Ethical and Responsible Conduct of Research (PEMM 124)
Lecturer - Neurobiology of Diseases (PEMM 211)
Lecturer - Neuroscience II -Neuroimmunology module (PEMM 212)
Lecturer - Advanced Biomedical Sciences (PEMM 271)


Born in Italy, Dr. Gilli earned a M.S. in Medical Biotechnology and a Ph.D. in Human Biology from the Università degli Studi di Torino (Italy). She then completed her postdoctoral research in neuroimmunology at Università degli Studi di Torino (Italy), and University of Basel (Switzerland). Her postdoctoral research focused on the immunogenicity and biological action of IFNβ therapy in patients with MS, and, later, on the molecular mechanisms behind the adaptive immune response in pregnancy in MS. She also completed a Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine Fellowship at the Università degli Studi di Torino (Italy) in 2011. In 2014, Dr. Gilli joined the faculty in the Neurology Department of the Geisel School of Medicine as an Assistant Professor, where she works as a basic scientist affiliated with the Multiple Sclerosis Center at Dartmouth.

Selected Publications


Magnetic resonance imaging approaches for studying mouse models of multiple sclerosis: A mini review.
Gilli F, Ceccarelli A
J Neurosci Res. 2023 Mar 31; doi: 10.1002/jnr.25193. Epub 2023 Mar 31.
PMID: 37001997

Theiler's virus-induced demyelinating disease as an infectious model of progressive multiple sclerosis.
Pike SC, Welsh N, Linzey M, Gilli F
Front Mol Neurosci. 2022;15:1019799. doi: 10.3389/fnmol.2022.1019799. Epub 2022 Oct 13.
PMID: 36311024

Divergent complement system activation in two clinically distinct murine models of multiple sclerosis.
Linzey M, DiSano K, Welsh N, Pachner A, Gilli F
Front Immunol. 2022;13:924734. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2022.924734. Epub 2022 Jul 26.
PMID: 35958570

SARS-CoV-2 in children with cancer or after haematopoietic stem cell transplant: An analysis of 131 patients.
Haeusler GM, Ammann RA, Carlesse F, Groll AH, Averbuch D, Castagnola E, Agyeman PKA, Phillips B, Gilli F, Solopova G, Attarbaschi A, Wegehaupt O, Speckmann C, Sung L, Lehrnbecher T
Eur J Cancer. 2021 Dec;159:78-86. doi: 10.1016/j.ejca.2021.09.027. Epub 2021 Oct 9.
PMID: 34736044

Editorial: B Cells in Inflammatory and Neurodegenerative Diseases of the Central Nervous System.
Gilli F, Magliozzi R, Piccio L
Front Neurol. 2021;12:759712. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2021.759712. Epub 2021 Sep 13.
PMID: 34589053

Memory B Cells in Multiple Sclerosis: Emerging Players in Disease Pathogenesis.
DiSano KD, Gilli F, Pachner AR
Front Immunol. 2021;12:676686. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2021.676686. Epub 2021 Jun 8.
PMID: 34168647

Are CSF CXCL13 concentrations solely dependent on intrathecal production? A commentary on "Chemokine CXCL13 in serum, CSF, and blood-CSF barrier function".
DiSano KD, Gilli F, Pachner AR
Fluids Barriers CNS. 2021 Feb 25;18(1):9. doi: 10.1186/s12987-021-00244-5. Epub 2021 Feb 25.
PMID: 33632258

Intrathecally produced CXCL13: A predictive biomarker in multiple sclerosis.
DiSano KD, Gilli F, Pachner AR
Mult Scler J Exp Transl Clin. 2020 Oct-Dec;6(4):2055217320981396. doi: 10.1177/2055217320981396. Epub 2020 Dec 16.
PMID: 33403120

SeXX Matters in Multiple Sclerosis.
Gilli F, DiSano KD, Pachner AR
Front Neurol. 2020;11:616. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2020.00616. Epub 2020 Jul 3.
PMID: 32719651

Isolating Central Nervous System Tissues and Associated Meninges for the Downstream Analysis of Immune cells.
DiSano KD, Linzey MR, Welsh NC, Meier JS, Pachner AR, Gilli F
J Vis Exp. 2020 May 19;(159) doi: 10.3791/61166. Epub 2020 May 19.
PMID: 32510499

View more publications on PubMed