Biomedical Sciences

Biomedical Sciences Experts

Niovi Santama

Department of Biological Sciences
Cyprus University of Technology


Degree in Biology (B.Sc.) (awarded with grade 83.3%), University of Athens, Greece (1987) Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Genetic Manipulation and Molecular Biology. University of Sussex, UK. (1988) Ph.D. in Neuroscience, University of Sussex, UK (1992). Professional Posts Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the Sussex Centre for Neuroscience (an Interdisciplinary Research Centre of Excellence) at the University of Sussex, U.K. (1992-93) EMBO Fellow at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany (1994-95) Marie Curie HCM Fellow at the EMBL in Heidelberg, Germany (1995-97) Lecturer at the Department of Natural Sciences, University of Cyprus (1996-98) Assistant Professor at the Department of Natural Sciences, University of Cyprus (1998-2002) Transfer as Assistant Professor at the newly-established Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cyprus (2002-07) Associate Professor Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cyprus (since 2007) and Department Head (since 2015) CV Summary Niovi Santama, Ph.D. is Associate Professor at the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Cyprus She is a molecular cell biologist, trained at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, and at the University of Sussex in Brighton, UK, following her basic studies at the University of Athens. She was the recipient of long-term postdoctoral Fellowships from EMBO and the Marie Curie HCM Programme (EU). Her research background and contributions are in the fields of the molecular and cell biology of neuropeptide gene expression in the brain, the structure and function of subnuclear domains in mammalian neurons, the molecular physiology of neurodegenerative disease and, currently, the field of molecular motor proteins and ciliogenesis in mammalian cells. She has published 31 papers in international refereed journals, including papers in the EMBO Journal, The Journal of Cell Science, The Journal of Biological Chemistry, Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences, in which she is first or corresponding author. For her publications, she scores an H-factor of 16 and total citations (excluding self-citations) about 680. During the period 2000-2011, she has attracted about 1.5 million Euro in external research funding, obtained by the European Commission, the US Muscular Dystrophy Association, the Telethon Foundation (Cyprus), the A.G. Leventis Foundation (France) and the Research Promotion Foundation (RPF, Cyprus). She collaborates with research groups internationally (Singapore, Germany, Spain, Italy, Greece, Belgium, the UK) and has received funding for collaborative research. She has supervised several undergraduate (15), 11 M.Sc., and 4 doctoral students (plus 1 currently in progress) and post-doctoral (6) researchers. Members of her group received short-term Fellowships during their studies in her group (5 EMBO and 1 FEBS) to visit European laboratories for collaborative research. At the University of Cyprus she designed and taught 6 new undergraduate courses and 4 new postgraduate courses. She represents Cyprus at EMBO, is the National Contact Point for the EMBO Young Investigator Award, and was an invited Reviewer in Life Sciences (Panels LS1, LS3) of the European Research Council (ERC, Starting Grants) (2007-14), in European Commission-funded programs and invited reviewer for the Wellcome Trust, UK (Neuroscience and Mental Health Projects).

Research Interest

entrosome and cilogenesis regulation in mammalian cells Molecular and cell biology of motor proteins and cytoskeleton in mammalian mitotic cells and in the mammalian nervous system Mechanisms of nuclear envelope formation in human cells Previous work Identification and functional characterisation of receptors for motor proteins in the nervous system Neurodegeneration and motor neuron disease in humans RNA metabolism and nuclear organisation in the mammalian neuron Molecular and cell biology of neuropeptidergic systems in the central nervous system of simple model organisms


  • Ioannou, A, Santama N, Skourides PA. (2013) X. laevis nucleotide binding protein 1 (xNubp1) is important for convergent extension movements and controls ciliogenesis via regulation of the actin cytoskeleton. Developmental Biology 380: 243-258.

  • Kypri, E., Christodoulou, A., Maimaris, G., Lethan, M., Santama, al (2014). The nucleotide binding proteins Nubp1 and Nubp2 are negative regulators of ciliogenesis.Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences, 71(3): 517-538

  • Ververis, A., Christodoulou, A., Christoforou, M., Lederer, C.W., Santama al. (2015) A novel family of katanin-like 2 protein isoforms (KATNAL2), interacting with nucleotide-binding proteins Nubp1 and Nubp2, are key regulators of different MT-based processes in mammalian cells. Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences 2015 Jul 8. [Epub ahead of print]

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