Francesco is a computer scientist by training. He has been a PhD student at the Systems, Synthetic and Computational Biology Laboratory of the TeleThon Institute of Genetics and Medicine (TIGEM, Naples - Italy), where he has focused on computational methods for drug discovery and repositioning from the analysis of large compendia of gene expression profiles, machine learning techniques for gene regulatory network inference, and complex network theory. Subsequently he has been awarded a post-doctoral fellowship in a joint program between the EMBL-EBI and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (WTSI). He has worked on a project focusing on integrative computational frameworks for predicting and dissecting drug susceptibility in cancer by analysing data from large scale cell-line based drug screens. Currently he is the leading computational scientist in a project founded by Open Targets (a public-private initiative involving teams at the WTSI, the EMBL-EBI, GlaxoSmithKline, and Biogen, with the aim of exploiting Big Data for systematically evaluating the validity of therapeutic targets). For this project he is responsible for the analysis of data from a pooled genome-wide CRISPR-Cas9 knockout screen across 500 cancer cell lines, with the aim of identifying new therapeutic targets and synthetic lethalities in cancer.