Luca Telesca

I am a ​marine ecologist with broad interests in marine invertebrates biology, evolution, and climate change. My research focuses on habitat-forming species, especially marine calcifiers (bivalves), and the links between biomineralization and environmental conditions. I use a combination of field, materials science, and modelling methods to study natural responses in marine populations and ecosystems to climate change over space and time.

Fields of Interest

  • Biomineralization
  • Climate change 
  • Evolutionary biology
  • Marine ecology


  • 2019 PhD, Earth Sciences – University of Cambridge, UK - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow
  • 2012 MSc, Marine Sciences – Sapienza University of Rome, Italy
  • 2010 BSc (Hons), Biology – Sapienza University of Rome, Italy

First Author

  • Telesca L, Linsley BK, Witek L, Hönisch B (2023) Biomineralization and biomechanical trade-offs under heterogeneous environments in the eastern oyster Crassostrea virginica. Submitted. bioRxiv preprint doi: 10.1101/2023.11.28.569049
  • Telesca L, Peck LS, Backeljau T, Heinig M, Harper EM (2021) A century of coping with change via compensatory biomineralisation in mussels. Global Change Biology, 27(3): 624–639. doi:10.1111/gcb.15417 [GCB Front Cover]
  • Telesca L, Peck LS, Sanders T, Thyrring J, Sejr MK, Harper EM (2019) Biomineralization plasticity and environmental heterogeneity predict geographical resilience patterns of foundation species to future change. Global Change Biology, 25(14): 4179–4193. doi:10.1111/gcb.14758
  • Telesca L, Michalek K, Sanders T, Peck LS, Thyrring J, Harper EM (2018) Blue mussel shell shape plasticity and natural environments: a quantitative approach. Scientific Reports, 8, 2865. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-20122-9  [“Top 100 Ecology” Collection 2018]
  • Telesca L, Belluscio A, Criscoli A, Ardizzone G, Apostolaki ET, Fraschetti S, Gristina M, Knittweis L, Martin CS, Pergent G, Alagna A, Badalamenti F, Garofalo G, Gerakaris V, Pace ML, Pergent-Martini C, Salomidi M (2015) Seagrass meadows (Posidonia oceanica) distribution and trajectories of change. Scientific Reports, 5, 12505. doi:10.1038/srep12505


  • Michalek K, Vendrami DLJ, Bekaert M, Green DH, Last KS, Telesca L, Wilding TA, Hoffman JI (2021) Mytilus trossulus introgression and consequences for shell traits in longline cultivated mussels. Evolutionary Applications, 14: 1830-1843. doi:10.1111/eva.13245
  • Clark MS, Peck LS, Arivalagan J, Backeljau T, Berland S, Cardoso JCR, Caurcel C, Chapelle G, De Noia M, Dupont S, Gharbi K, Hoffman JI, Last KS, Marie A, Melzner F, Michalek K, Morris J, Power DM, Ramesh K, Sanders T, Sillanpää K, Sleight VA, Stewart‐Sinclair PJ, Sundell K, Telesca L, Vendrami DJL, Ventura A, Wilding TA, Yarra T, Harper EM (2020) Deciphering mollusc shell production: the roles of genetic mechanisms through to ecology, aquaculture and biomimetics. Biological Reviews, 95(6): 1812-1837. doi:10.1111/brv.12640
  • Vendrami DJL, De Noia M, Telesca L, Brodte E-M, Hoffman HI (2020) Genome-wide insights into introgression and its consequences for genome-wide heterozygosity in the Mytilus species complex across Europe, Evolutionary Applications, 13(8): 2130-2142. doi:10.1111/eva.12974   
  • De Noia M*, Telesca L*, Vendrami DJL*, Gokalp HK, Charrier G, Harper EM, Hoffman JI (2020) Population genetic structure is unrelated to shell shape, thickness and organic content in European populations of the soft-shell clam Mya arenaria. Genes, 11(3), 298. doi:10.3390/genes11030298 [*denotes equal contribution]
  • Vendrami DJL, De Noia M, Telesca L, Handal W, Charrier G, Boudry P, Eberhart-Phillips L, Hoffman JI (2019) RAD sequencing sheds new light on the genetic structure and local adaptation of European scallops and resolves their demographic histories. Scientific Reports, 9, 7455. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-43939-4
  • Vendrami DLJ, Houston RD, Gharbi K, Telesca L, Gutierrez AP, Gurney‐Smith H, Hasegawa N, Boudry P, Hoffman JI (2019) Detailed insights into pan‐European population structure and inbreeding in wild and hatchery Pacific oysters (Crassostrea gigas) revealed by genome‐wide SNP data. Evolutionary Applications, 12(3), 519–534. doi: 10.1111/eva.12736
  • Vendrami DJL, Telesca L, Weigand H, Weiss M, Fawcett K, Lehman K, Clark MS, Leese F, McMinn C, Moore H, Hoffman JI (2017) RAD sequencing resolves fine-scale population structure in a benthic invertebrate: implications for understanding phenotypic plasticity. Royal Society Open Science, 4(2), 160548. doi:10.1098/rsos.160548
  • Vendrami DJL, Shah A, Telesca L, Hoffman JI (2016) Mining the transcriptomes of four commercially important shellfish species for single nucleotide polymorphisms within biomineralization genes. Marine Genomics, 27: 17-23. doi:10.1016/j.margen.2015.12.009 [Invited article; Issue - Cells to Shells: The genomic of mollusc exoskeletons]