ISS - Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS) is the leading technical and scientific public body of the Italian National Health Service with 2,000 employees (permanent and not permanent staff). The Institute has 7 Departments and 8 National Centres (e.g. national centre for chemical substances, national centre for rare diseases). The activities include research, control, training and consultation in the interest of public health protection. The Institute conducts scientific research in a wide variety of fields, from cutting-edge molecular and genetic research to population-based studies of risk factors for disease and exposure studies also in contaminated areas.Research priorities are based on those set forth in the National Health Plan.The Institute serves as a major source of information relating to public health and biomedicine in Italy through online connections to national and international scientific databases and data banks. ISS produces numerous publications, including a quarterly peer-reviewed journal, technical reports, a monthly newsletter describing the Institute’s major research activities, and a national epidemiological bulletin. ISS plans, implements and evaluates international health projects, ranging from cooperative research and development projects to humanitarian assistance. ISS has a relevant experience in European Commission-funded research (i.e 81 projects in FP7) and participates to collaborative research projects, Marie Curie or Cooperation Programmes.
The Department of Environment and Primary Prevention of ISS has a multidisciplinary scope and carries out human health and environmental risk assessment through the integration of chemical, toxicological, microbiological and epidemiological expertise. The Department has a long experience in the field of chemistry, ecotoxicology, molecular biology and microbiology(e.g. pathogens detection, diatoms, enteric viruses), in different matrices. The Department of ISS has a strong expertise in a large number of toxicological disciplines spanning from toxicological chemistry, to toxicogenomics and alternative risk assessment methods; has many years of experience in the development of high quality chemical toxicological databases and bioinformatics.
The Department collaborates with international and European bodies such as WHO, IARC, EFSA, ECHA, European Commission (DG Health & Environment); is currently co-chairing the European WG chemicals of the CIS (Common Implementation strategy) of the WFD (water framework directive) and is member to the Working Groups Ecostat, Programme of Measures and Groundwaters of the CIS of the WFD.