Raffaello Potestio

Project PI

Photo credit: Nikita Tretyakov

Curriculum Vitae

I graduated in Physics from the University of Rome "La Sapienza" in 2006, with a Master Thesis on Lattice Quantum Chromodynamics under the supervision of G. Martinelli. In the same year I enrolled in a PhD course in Statistical Physics at the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA-ISAS) in Trieste. In 2010 I defended my PhD Thesis on Coarse-grained models of protein structure and interactions, supervised by C. Micheletti. In November 2010 I joined K. Kremer's group at MPIP as a postdoc. Between August 2013 and December 2017 I have been Project Leader of the Statistical Mechanics of BioMolecules group. Since January 2018 I am tenure track assistant professor (RTD-B) at the University of Trento, Italy, and PI of the VARIAMOLS ERC StG project.

My complete CV can be downloaded here.

Research interests

My main research interest since during the PhD has been the development and application of coarse-grained models and coarse-graining strategies for soft matter, in particular biologically relevant systems. The two-sided, complementary goals of this approach are to understand the most fundamental and/or universal features of a system and, at the same time, to improve the computational efficiency of a simulation.

Secondly, I work on the study of topologically self-entangled biopolymers, namely knotted proteins and DNA. To this end, I make use of standard and ad hoc coarse-grained models developed specifically for the systems under examination.

Publication list

A full publication list can be found at this link.


  • I am currently teaching the course Statistical Mechanics for the Master course (here the link).
  • In the second semester of Academic Year 2018/19 I have taught the course Multi-scale methods in soft matter. Here the links to the syllabus: ITALIAN, ENGLISH.
  • In the first semester of Academic Year 2018/19 I have taught a short course on selected topics in Applications of Statistical Mechanics in Biology in the framework of PAF - Percorso di Approfondimento in Fisica. The website for this short course can be found at this link.

Theses and internships

Master theses and internships (tirocini) are available in the broad area of biophysics, soft matter physics, molecular modelling, molecular dynamics simulations. Students interested in a master thesis are encouraged to arrange an informal appointment to discuss it. A list of topics is available at this link.


Email: raffaello.potestio _AT_ unitn.it

Address: University of Trento, Physics Department | Via Sommarive 14, 38123 Trento - Italy

Personal page on UniTN website: follow this link.