Visiting Professor Seminar: Prof. Paolo Chiodini

Identification of novel prognostic biomarkers in oncology and chronic disease management: biostatistical methods for discovery and validation

Prof. Paolo Chiodiniweijer_headshot.png

Department of Mental and Physical Health and Preventive Medicine University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli” (Italy)


A biomarker is a defined characteristic that is measured as an indicator of biological processes, pathogenic processes, or biological responses to an exposure or intervention. Biomarkers may include molecular, histologic, radiographic, or physiologic characteristics. In particular, a prognostic biomarker is a characteristic that indicates an increased (or decreased) likelihood of a future clinical event, disease recurrence, or progression in an identified population. In oncology, in addition to clinicopathologic characteristics, molecular indicators or signatures measured on tumors are increasingly used. Biomarker development involves multiple processes, linking initial discovery in basic studies, validation, and clinical implementation. The ultimate goal of the processes is to establish clinically accessible biomarker tests with clinical utility. However, there are many hurdles as evidenced by the low estimated rate of successful clinical translation of biomarkers. In the discovery phase, the statistical properties of the biomarker are of interest, including the sources of variation and sources of bias and missing data. Furthermore, in the discovery phase multiplicity should be considered when considering many biomarkers or to define the best cutoff for a continuous biomarker. To define a useful prognostic biomarker is not sufficient to show that it accurately predicts outcome in the initial development data, but evidence is necessary that the biomarker performs well also in other groups of patients. Validation is necessary to assess the generalizability of the prognostic biomarker in terms of reproducibility and transportability.

Short Biography:

In 2002 degree in Statistics at the University of Milano-Bicocca, Milan (Italy). In 2007 postgraduate school in Medical Statistics at the University of Milan (Italy). Researcher in Medical Statistics from 2006 to 2017 at Second University of Naples (Italy). Associate Professor in Medical Statistics from December 2017 to November 2020 at the Department of Mental and Physical Health of the University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli” (Italy). Full Professor in the same Department from December 2020. From March 2019 to February 2021 he was Visiting Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health within the Blizard Institute, Queen Mary University of London. Main research fields: cardiovascular and cancer epidemiology, development and validation of prognostic models, statistical methods for clinical research, and clinical trials, conduction and analysis of Systematic reviews, meta-analyses and individual patient data meta-analyses. Author of 230 publications and 2 monographs, h-index 51 (Scopus source). In December 2015 included in the Italian Top Scientist list ( He was involved as a biostatistician in several international and national epidemiological projects: EPIC Project, EPIC HEART Project, EPICOR Study, ATENA Study, CARHES Study, TABLE Study, CRISC Study, SPES Study, TOCIVID-19 trial, COVOCA Study. Reviewer for several international scientific journals. From September 2017 Associate Editor for the journal Epidemiologia & Prevenzione. From January 2018 Special Consultant Statistician for the journal Orthodontics & Craniofacial Research. From March 2022 Associate Editor of the International Journal of Public Health.