International PhD Program in Arterial Hypertension and Vascular Biology


The International PhD program in Arterial Hypertension and Vascular Biology is based in the Department of Medicine – DIMED of the University of Padua.  This is a referral centre for Arterial Hypertension and cardiovascular diseases in Italy and a Centre of Excellence for Hypertension Research of the European Society of Hypertension (ESH).

This programme is the first in Europe devoted to Hypertension research and was established in conjunction with the University of Rome La Sapienza, Italy, and the School for Cardiovascular Diseases in Maastricht (CARIM), The Netherlands.  It requires a rotation across the three Universities and possibly stages at other leading research centres in Europe and the US.

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  About the PhD Course

The PhD entails specific commitment and training in the following areas:

1. Experimental research

  • Vascular biology with emphasis on the endothelium and endothelial (dys)function, and its role in the control of vascular tone;
  • Salt and water homeostasis;
  • Pathophysiology of control of blood pressure;
  • Molecular analysis methodologies;
  • Experimental atherosclerosis;
  • Arterial hypertension from animal models;
  • Molecular and experimental pharmacology;
  • Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of anti-hypertensive medications.

2. Clinical research.

  • Epidemiology and statistics applied to hypertension;
  • Principles of pharmaco-economics applied to hypertension;
  • Methodologies for assessment of target organ damage in hypertension;
  • Pathophysiology of the secondary forms of hypertension;
  • Guidelines for risk stratification and treatment;
  • Design and planning of clinical trials in hypertension.


The First Year of Research

The student will do coursework and labwork.

The curriculum will involve:

  1. General research methods training. An introductory course is held every year at the Venetian Institute of Medicine (VIMM) by the Faculty members of all PhD Courses of the University of Padua and outside experts in scientific fields. The course is focused on ‘How to do research” and covers applications of chemistry and physics to Medicine, genetics, molecular biology, statistics, ethics and social aspects.
  2. Attendance at research workshops and seminars held by the Faculty members and PhD students or outside speakers, mostly focussed on the cardiovascular system.
  3. Advanced coursework in the laboratories. The PhD student has the chance to be educated at a variety of techniques and introduced to a wide array of inter-disciplinary and comprehensive cardiovascular disease programs.

At the end of the 1st year the PhD student is expected to have practised skills of organizing, structuring, and presenting research,  Hence, he/she will be assigned to a specific research project in the field of Arterial Hypertension and Vascular biology under the strict supervision of an experienced tutor. Whether 1st year PhD student is upgraded to PhD status at the end of the first year of research will depend on his/her performance in the curriculum.


Second and Third Years of Research

Once upgraded to the 2nd year PhD student status, the student will concentrate on his/her PhD labwork to prepare his/her final dissertation. As research progresses, there will be opportunities to present work in progress at research workshops attended by Faculty members and research students. The PhD student will have also the opportunity to attend Journal Club and the Weekly Meetings given by outside speakers and Faculty members.

At the 2nd or the 3rd year the PhD student will spend at least 6 months abroad, at the CARIM or in another lab that could be of interest for the ongoing research.

The normal deadline for submission of the dissertation will be the end of December in the third year of research. Within this time, an original work focussed on the assigned theme should have been completed and discussed in detail with the tutor. The defence will occur about 2 months after, at the presence of the Faculty members, including members from CARIM.

  Application and Admission


Call for admission to the PhD Courses 38° Cycle 2022/23 and enrollment procedure:




  Coordinator and Faculty Staff

Gian Paolo Rossi


Faculty Staff

Diego Cecchin, University of Padua, I

Ambrogio Fassina, University of Padua, I

Raffaella Motta, University of Padua, I

Teresa M. Seccia (Vice-Coordinator), University of Padua, I

Franco Grego, University of Padua, I

Giovanna Albertin, University of Padua, I 

Gian Paolo Rossi, University of Padua, I 

Maurizio Iacobone, University of Padua, I

Maria Lorenza Muiesan, University of Brescia, I 

Massino Salvetti, University of Brescia, I

Mirko Menegolo, University of Padua, I

Stella Blandamura, University of Padua, I

Claudio Letizia, University of Rome La Sapienza, I 

Andrea Frustaci, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Cristina Chimenti, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Giuliano Tocci, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Massimo Rossi, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Sandro Mazzaferro, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Giancarlo D'ambrosio, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Elena Pacella, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Danilo Toni, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Susanna Sciomer, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Marcello Rattazzi, University of Padua, I 

Roberto Stramare, University of Padua, I

Giacomo Rossitto, University of Padua, I

Brasilina Caroccia, University of Padua, I

Livia Lenzini, University of Padua, I

Luigi Petramala, University of Rome La Sapienza, I

Giulio Ceolotto, University of Padua, I

Matthias Barton, University of Zurich, CH

Ulrike Muscha Steckelings, Syddansk Universitet, DN

Ana Briones, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, E

Maria Christina Zennaro, INSERM, F

Ariela Benigni, Istituto Mario Negri, I

Tilman Hackeng, CARIM, NL

Abraham Kroon, CARIM, NL

Leon Schurgers, CARIM, NL

Francesca Mallamaci, CNR, I

Koen Reesink, Maastricht University, NL

Christian Delles, University of glasgow, UK

  PhD Students


Francesca Gioco

Eugenia Guerzoni

Martino Pengo


Cycle XXIX

Marilina Citton

Verdiana Ravarotto

Paul Emmanuel Vanderriele

Giovanni Viel



Scarpa Riccardo

Bisogni Valeria

Prisco Selene

Citoni Barbara

Torresan Francesca

Piazza Maria

Saracino Vincenza



Calvez Valentin

Cesario Vincenzo 

Concistrè Antonio 

Crimì Filippo

Miceli Francesca

Zingaretti Viviana



Caputo Ilaria

Nicolini Ettore

Presta Vivianne

Schiavone Donatella

Shagjaa Tungalagtamir



Cycle XXXV

Adducci Carmen

Alfarano Maria

Bressan Alessandro

Duraku Muja Eva

Figliuzzi Ilaria

Letteri Federica

Pata Francesco

Risitano Angela

Sanga Viola

Spimpolo Alessandro

Tartaglione Lida



Circosta Francesco

Giovanardi Francesco

Mariani Marco Valerio

Neccia Matteo 

Patrizio Paolo

Petraglia Luca

Tini Melato Giacomo



Weekly Meetings


The Weekly Meetings (open only to faculty and PhD students) are held every Wednesday at 08:15 a.m. During the meeting each PhD student will discuss his/her project and share the ongoing results with the Faculty members and other PhD students.


In the covid-19 pandemic era the meetings are held via zoom. The PhD students will be informed for the link the day before.

January 13, 2021

January 20, 2021

January 27, 2021

February 3, 2021

February 10, 2021

February 17, 2021

February 24, 2021

March 3, 2021

March 10, 2021

March 17, 2021

March 24, 2021

March 31, 2021

April 7, 2021

April 14, 2021

April 21, 2021

April 28, 2021

May 5, 2021

May 12, 2021

May 19, 2021

May 26, 2021

June 2, 2021


Scheduled Weekly Meetings

June 9, 2021

June 16, 2021

June 23, 2021

June 30, 2021


Journal Club

The Journal Club are held every Friday at 08:15 a.m. and are open to attendees. At each Journal Club recent papers focussed on experimental or clinical aspects of hypertension or cardiovascular diseases at large are presented by a PhD student and counter-discussed by another PhD student under the supervision of the Coordinator or another Faculty member.

In the covid-19 pandemic era the meetings are held via zoom. The PhD students will be informed for the link the day before.


January 15, 2021

January 22, 2021

January 29, 2021

February 5, 2021

February 12, 2021

February 19, 2021

February 26, 2021

March 5, 2021

March 12, 2021

March 19, 2021

March 12, 2021

March 19, 2021

March 26, 2021

April 2, 2021

April 9, 2021

April 16, 2021

April 23, 2021

April 30, 2021

May 7, 2021

May 14, 2021

May 21, 2021

May 28, 2021


Scheduled Journal Clubs

June 4, 2021

June 11, 2021

June 18, 2021

June 25, 2021

  Recent Publications

Aldosterone and cortisol synthesis regulation by angiotensin-(1-7) and angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 in the human adrenal cortex.

Caroccia B, Vanderriele PE, Seccia TM, Piazza M, Lenzini L, Prisco S, Torresan F, Domening O, Iacobone M, Poglitsch M, Rossi GP.J Hypertens. 2021 Mar 1. doi: 10.1097/HJH.0000000000002816. Online ahead of print.PMID: 33657582


The 2020 Italian Society of Arterial Hypertension (SIIA) practical guidelines for the management of primary aldosteronism.

Rossi GP, Bisogni V, Bacca AV, Belfiore A, Cesari M, Concistrè A, Del Pinto R, Fabris B, Fallo F, Fava C, Ferri C, Giacchetti G, Grassi G, Letizia C, Maccario M, Mallamaci F, Maiolino G, Manfellotto D, Minuz P, Monticone S, Morganti A, Muiesan ML, Mulatero P, Negro A, Parati G, Pengo MF, Petramala L, Pizzolo F, Rizzoni D, Rossitto G, Veglio F, Seccia TM.Int J Cardiol Hypertens. 2020 Apr 15;5:100029. doi: 10.1016/j.ijchy.2020.100029. eCollection 2020 Jun.PMID: 33447758 Free PMC article.


Familial hyperaldosteronism type 1 and pregnancy: successful treatment with low dose dexamethasone.

Sanga V, Lenzini L, Seccia TM, Rossi GP.Blood Press. 2021 Jan 4:1-5. doi: 10.1080/08037051.2020.1863771. Online ahead of print.PMID: 33390031


Aldosterone synthase inhibitors for cardiovascular diseases: A comprehensive review of preclinical, clinical and in silico data.

Lenzini L, Zanotti G, Bonchio M, Rossi GP.Pharmacol Res. 2021 Jan;163:105332. doi: 10.1016/j.phrs.2020.105332. Epub 2020 Dec 1.PMID: 33271294.


Practice Recommendations for Diagnosis and Treatment of the Most Common Forms of Secondary Hypertension.

Rossi GP, Bisogni V, Rossitto G, Maiolino G, Cesari M, Zhu R, Seccia TM.High Blood Press Cardiovasc Prev. 2020 Dec;27(6):547-560. doi: 10.1007/s40292-020-00415-9. Epub 2020 Nov 7.PMID: 33159664 Free PMC article.


High Sodium Intake, Glomerular Hyperfiltration and Protein Catabolism in Patients with Essential Hypertension.

Rossitto G, Maiolino G, Lerco S, Ceolotto G, Blackburn G, Mary S, Antonelli G, Berton C, Bisogni V, Cesari M, Seccia TM, Lenzini L, Pinato A, Montezano A, Touyz RM, Petrie MC, Daly R, Welsh P, Plebani M, Rossi GP, Delles C.Cardiovasc Res. 2020 Jul 16:cvaa205. doi: 10.1093/cvr/cvaa205. Online ahead of print.PMID: 33053160


Primary aldosteronism in elderly, old, and very old patients.

Cesari M, Seccia TM, Maiolino G, Rossi GP.J Hum Hypertens. 2020 Dec;34(12):807-813. doi: 10.1038/s41371-020-00395-2. Epub 2020 Sep 14.PMID: 32929132 .


Genetics, prevalence, screening and confirmation of primary aldosteronism: a position statement and consensus of the Working Group on Endocrine Hypertension of The European Society of Hypertension.

Mulatero P, Monticone S, Deinum J, Amar L, Prejbisz A, Zennaro MC, Beuschlein F, Rossi GP, Nishikawa T, Morganti A, Seccia TM, Lin YH, Fallo F, Widimsky J.J Hypertens. 2020 Oct;38(10):1919-1928. doi: 10.1097/HJH.0000000000002510.PMID: 32890264


Resolution of drug-resistant hypertension by adrenal vein sampling-guided adrenalectomy: a proof-of-concept study.

Torresan F, Rossitto G, Bisogni V, Lerco S, Maiolino G, Cesari M, Zhu R, Iacobone M, Seccia TM, Rossi GP.Clin Sci (Lond). 2020 Jun 12;134(11):1265-1278. doi: 10.1042/CS20200340.PMID: 32452518


Disease monitoring of Primary Aldosteronism.

Rossi GP, Cesari M, Lenzini L, Seccia TM.Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2020 Mar;34(2):101417. doi: 10.1016/j.beem.2020.101417. Epub 2020 Mar 10.PMID: 32336665.


Genetics, prevalence, screening and confirmation of primary aldosteronism: a position statement and consensus of the Working Group on Endocrine Hypertension of The European Society of Hypertension.

Mulatero P, Monticone S, Deinum J, Amar L, Prejbisz A, Zennaro MC, Beuschlein F, Rossi GP, Nishikawa T, Morganti A, Seccia TM, Lin YH, Fallo F, Widimsky J.J Hypertens. 2020 Oct;38(10):1919-1928. doi: 10.1097/HJH.0000000000002510.PMID: 32890264


Disease monitoring of Primary Aldosteronism.

Rossi GP, Cesari M, Lenzini L, Seccia TM.Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2020 Mar;34(2):101417. doi: 10.1016/j.beem.2020.101417. Epub 2020 Mar 10.PMID: 32336665.


Vitamin D supplementation: a novel therapy for aldosteronism?

Rossi GP, Lenzini L.Nat Rev Endocrinol. 2020 Jun;16(6):303-304. doi: 10.1038/s41574-020-0359-3.PMID: 32286517.


Potential harmful effects of discontinuing ACE-inhibitors and ARBs in COVID-19 patients.

Rossi GP, Sanga V, Barton M.Elife. 2020 Apr 6;9:e57278. doi: 10.7554/eLife.57278.PMID: 32250244 Free PMC article.


The cardiovascular consequences of hyperaldosteronism.

Rossi GP, Seccia TM, Maiolino G, Cesari M.Ann Endocrinol (Paris). 2020 Feb 28:S0003-4266(20)30029-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ando.2020.02.006. Online ahead of print.PMID: 32192789


Effects of Mineralocorticoid and AT1 Receptor Antagonism on The Aldosterone-Renin Ratio In Primary Aldosteronism-the EMIRA Study.

Rossi GP, Ceolotto G, Rossitto G, Maiolino G, Cesari M, Seccia TM.J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2020 Jun 1;105(6):dgaa080. doi: 10.1210/clinem/dgaa080.PMID: 32067030


Atrial fibrillation as presenting sign of primary aldosteronism: results of the Prospective Appraisal on the Prevalence of Primary Aldosteronism in Hypertensive (PAPPHY) Study.

Seccia TM, Letizia C, Muiesan ML, Lerco S, Cesari M, Bisogni V, Petramala L, Maiolino G, Volpin R, Rossi GP.J Hypertens. 2020 Feb;38(2):332-339. doi: 10.1097/HJH.0000000000002250.PMID: 31834121


Primary Aldosteronism: JACC State-of-the-Art Review.

Rossi GP.J Am Coll Cardiol. 2019 Dec 3;74(22):2799-2811. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2019.09.057.PMID: 31779795.


Arterial Hypertension, Aldosterone, and Atrial Fibrillation.

Seccia TM, Caroccia B, Maiolino G, Cesari M, Rossi GP.Curr Hypertens Rep. 2019 Nov 18;21(12):94. doi: 10.1007/s11906-019-1001-4.PMID: 31741119.


Heterogenous Responses to Cosyntropin in Primary Aldosteronism.

Rossi GP.J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2020 Mar 1;105(3):dgz133. doi: 10.1210/clinem/dgz133.PMID: 31665321 No abstract available.


Adrenal venous sampling in dye-allergic primary aldosteronism patients: prevalence, pitfalls and a possible solution.

Battistel M, Ceolotto G, Barbiero G, Rossitto G, Rossi GP.J Hypertens. 2018 Sep;36(9):1942-1944. doi: 10.1097/HJH.0000000000001827.PMID: 30192309 No abstract available.


The Biology of Normal Zona Glomerulosa and Aldosterone-Producing Adenoma: Pathological Implications.

Seccia TM, Caroccia B, Gomez-Sanchez EP, Gomez-Sanchez CE, Rossi GP.Endocr Rev. 2018 Dec 1;39(6):1029-1056. doi: 10.1210/er.2018-00060.PMID: 30007283 Free PMC article. Review.


Does angiotensin II regulate parathyroid hormone secretion or not?

Rossi GP, Prisco S.Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2018 Nov;89(5):568-569. doi: 10.1111/cen.13798. Epub 2018 Jul 11.PMID: 29947100 No abstract available.


Gitelman's Syndrome: characterization of a novel c.1181G>A point mutation and functional classification of the known mutations.

Ravarotto V, Loffing J, Loffing-Cueni D, Heidemeyer M, Pagnin E, Calò LA, Rossi GP.Hypertens Res. 2018 Aug;41(8):578-588. doi: 10.1038/s41440-018-0061-1. Epub 2018 Jun 20.PMID: 29925901


Saga of Familial Hyperaldosteronism: Yet a New Channel.

Lenzini L, Prisco S, Caroccia B, Rossi GP.Hypertension. 2018 Jun;71(6):1010-1014. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.118.11150. Epub 2018 May 7.PMID: 29735637 Review. No abstract available.


Mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists: time of repositioning them in the treatment of arterial hypertension.

Rossi GP.J Hypertens. 2018 May;36(5):1015-1018. doi: 10.1097/HJH.0000000000001686.PMID: 29578956 No abstract available.


Cure With Cryoablation of Arterial Hypertension Due to a Renin-Producing Tumor.

Maiolino G, Battistel M, Barbiero G, Bisogni V, Rossi GP.Am J Hypertens. 2018 Apr 13;31(5):537-540. doi: 10.1093/ajh/hpx213.PMID: 29522074


Update in adrenal venous sampling for primary aldosteronism.

Rossi GP.Curr Opin Endocrinol Diabetes Obes. 2018 Jun;25(3):160-171. doi: 10.1097/MED.0000000000000407.PMID: 29521660 Review.


Management of a Pregnant Woman With Fibromuscular Dysplasia.

Berra E, Dominiczak AF, Touyz RM, Pierard S, Hammer F, Rossi GP, Micali RG, Staessen JA, Bursztyn M, Kahan T, Persu A.Hypertension. 2018 Apr;71(4):540-547. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.118.10819. Epub 2018 Feb 26.PMID: 29483231 No abstract available.


Adrenalectomy Lowers Incident Atrial Fibrillation in Primary Aldosteronism Patients at Long Term.

Rossi GP, Maiolino G, Flego A, Belfiore A, Bernini G, Fabris B, Ferri C, Giacchetti G, Letizia C, Maccario M, Mallamaci F, Muiesan ML, Mannelli M, Negro A, Palumbo G, Parenti G, Rossi E, Mantero F; PAPY Study Investigators.Hypertension. 2018 Apr;71(4):585-591. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.117.10596. Epub 2018 Feb 26.PMID: 29483224


Effect of Continuous Positive Airway Pressure on Blood Pressure Variability in Patients With Obstructive Sleep Apnea.

Pengo MF, Ratneswaran C, Berry M, Kent BD, Kohler M, Rossi GP, Steier J.J Clin Hypertens (Greenwich). 2016 Nov;18(11):1180-1184. doi: 10.1111/jch.12845. Epub 2016 Jun 1.PMID: 27251875


Adrenal vein sampling versus CT scanning in primary aldosteronism.

Funder JW, Rossi GP.Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol. 2016 Nov;4(11):886. doi: 10.1016/S2213-8587(16)30240-6.PMID: 27793316 No abstract available.


Recent advances in the diagnosis and management of obstructive sleep apnea.

Vianello A, Bisogni V, Rinaldo C, Gallan F, Maiolino G, Braccioni F, Guarda-Nardini L, Molena B, Rossi GP, Marchese-Ragona R; Padova Sleep Apnea Study Group.Minerva Med. 2016 Dec;107(6):437-451. Epub 2016 Sep 13.PMID: 27625198 Review.


Estrogen Signaling in the Adrenal Cortex: Implications for Blood Pressure Sex Differences.

Caroccia B, Seccia TM, Barton M, Rossi GP.Hypertension. 2016 Oct;68(4):840-8. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.116.07660.PMID: 27600178 Review. No abstract available.


Metoclopramide unmasks potentially misleading contralateral suppression in patients undergoing adrenal vein sampling for primary aldosteronism.

Rossitto G, Miotto D, Battistel M, Barbiero G, Maiolino G, Bisogni V, Sanga V, Rossi GP.J Hypertens. 2016 Nov;34(11):2258-65. doi: 10.1097/HJH.0000000000001082.PMID: 27512976


Obituary: Cesare Dal Palù MD 20-01-1923-18-01-2016.

Pessina AC, Rossi GP.J Hypertens. 2016 May;34(5):1022. doi: 10.1097/hjh.0000000000000900.PMID: 27482560 No abstract available.


Endothelin-1 Drives Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Hypertensive Nephroangiosclerosis.

Seccia TM, Caroccia B, Gioco F, Piazza M, Buccella V, Guidolin D, Guerzoni E, Montini B, Petrelli L, Pagnin E, Ravarotto V, Belloni AS, Calò LA, Rossi GP.J Am Heart Assoc. 2016 Jul 21;5(7):e003888. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.116.003888.PMID: 27444511 Free PMC article.


Randomised sham-controlled trial of transcutaneous electrical stimulation in obstructive sleep apnoea.

Pengo MF, Xiao S, Ratneswaran C, Reed K, Shah N, Chen T, Douiri A, Hart N, Luo Y, Rafferty GF, Rossi GP, Williams A, Polkey MI, Moxham J, Steier J.Thorax. 2016 Oct;71(10):923-31. doi: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2016-208691. Epub 2016 Jul 19.PMID: 27435610 Free PMC article. Clinical Trial.


Cardiac Remodeling in Patients With Primary and Secondary Aldosteronism: A Tissue Doppler Study.

Cesari M, Letizia C, Angeli P, Sciomer S, Rosi S, Rossi GP.Circ Cardiovasc Imaging. 2016 Jun;9(6):e004815. doi: 10.1161/CIRCIMAGING.116.004815.PMID: 27307552

  News and Events

Rare Disease Day in DIMED Research Projects 2021 - 26 febbario 2021

Planned Events

  • Seminar: Funding the research: why is important to know funding programs and opportunities

Speaker: Dr. TBA

  • Seminar: Intellectual property research and patenting

Speaker: TBA

  • Seminar: How to develop a successful career in the Pharma-Biotech Industry

Speaker: Dr. Luis Rios-Nogales

  Suggested events:

ECCR 2021: 24th Meeting of the European Council for  Cardiovascular Research (ECCR)

8-10 October, 2021 at Park Hotel Villa Fiorita – Via Giovannie XXIII, 1 – 31050 Monastier di Treviso, Italy.


ESH-ISH Joint Meeting of the European Society of Hypertension and the International Society of Hypertension

11-14 April, 2021