SIENA, ITALY - 20 MARCH 2015: (L-R) Facility manager Michele Midollini (35) and researcher Massimiliano Travagli (40), two lab representatives of Siena Biotech, pose for a portrait in front of the headquarters they occupied together with other 48 employees to protest against the financial cutback of the Monte dei Paschi di Siena Foundation, in Siena, Italy, on March 20th 2015. The banners set up on the gate and on the building say "We defend our work" and "50 families without a future".
Siena Biotech is a clinical-stage drug discovery company whose efforts are mainly focused on discovering new drugs for therapeutic intervention against neurodegenerative diseases and in oncology, such as Alzheimer’s Disease, Huntington’s Disease and Cancer. Until 2014 Siena Biotech was entirely funded by the Monte dei Paschi di Siena Foundation.
Now Siena Biotech has filed for bankruptcy proceedings, and its researchers and employees occupied the headquarters of the company based in Siena.
Siena, a Tuscan city and UNESCO World Heritage Site, is home to Monte dei Paschi di Siena, the world's oldest surviving bank and Italy's third largest bank. The bank, founded in 1472, was the largest employer in Siena, and it helped finance a host of community projects and services until it stumbled during the financial crisis started in 2008.