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Managing Board
Sara Sigismund
Associate Professor
University of Milan c/o European Institute of Oncology
Department of Oncology and Hemato-oncology
Via Adamello 16 - 20139 Milano
phone 02 94372662
Our lab studies the molecular mechanisms governing endocytosis and signaling of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), and how their alteration contributes to cancer development.
Board Members
Massimo Bonora
University of Ferrara
via fossato di mortara 70 - 44121 ferrara
The group led by Massimo Bonora studies the role of mitochondria as an intracellular signaling platform. Mitochondria are not simple powerhouses of the cell, but dynamic structures that actively process and signal biological information. They act as the processor of the cell and, together with the nucleus and other organelles, constitute a complex system of cellular information processing. Through the integration of biochemical, imaging, and cellular biology techniques, the group focuses on how mitochondria sense and respond to endogenous inputs; integrate information and produce output signals that regulate the functions of other organelles and cellular responses. The mitochondrial signaling system is mainly studied in the regulation of hematopoietic stem cells and alterations in the mechanisms of quiescence, self-renewal, and sensitivity to cell death that cause the onset of malignant hematopoiesis such as myelodysplastic syndromes and acute myeloid leukemias.
Sirio Dupont
Università degli Studi di Padova
Department of Molecular Medicine
via Ugo Bassi 58/b - 35131 Padova
phone +390498276095
We are interested in understanding how the mechanical properties of the extracellular matrix (ECM) regulate signaling pathways, gene transcription and other cellular processes, and how this is relevant for cell behavior, tissue homeostasis and disease. Our goal is to identify novel general principles in vitro, and to push their validation in vivo with the development of new animal models to study mechano-signaling in tissues. We use a multidisciplinary approach that includes custom-built compliant cell culture substrata, ECM micropatterning, cell micromanipulations, optical microscopy, molecular and cell biology techniques, transcriptional and bioinformatic analyses, proteomics, metabolomics, CRISPR/Cas9 modified cell lines, and genetically-modified mice, also thanks to multiple collaborations with colleagues in Italy and abroad. We have identified YAP/TAZ transcriptional coactivators as readers of ECM mechanical cues and mediators of their effects on cancer cell proliferation and mesenchymal stem cell differentiation, and are now developing genetic tools to study the relevance of F-actin remodeling as regulator of YAP/TAZ activity in vivo. Moreover, we got recently interested in understanding how mechanical cues, YAP/TAZ and metabolism are reciprocally regulated.
Massimo Gulisano
University of Catania
Department of Drug and Health Sciences, Laboratory of Synthetic and Systems Biology
Viale Andrea Doria 6 - 95125 Catania
phone +390957384263 - fax +390952933700
My research interests are in the field of Synthetic and Systems Biology, with the following specific focuses: (1) experimental models for neurodegenerative and neuromuscular disorders (2) osteochondral stem cells and regenerative medicine using collagen/hydroxyapatite scaffolds (3) Epithelial Mesenchimal Transition (EMT) molecular mechanism in embryo development and cancer, using xenotransplant approaches in vertebrate embryos; (4) Drug screening strategies optimization in patient-derived organoid models
Gabriella Minchiotti
Institute of Genetics and Biophysics "A. Buzzati-Traverso"
Via Pietro Castellino, 111 - 80131 Napoli
phone 0816132357 - fax 0816132595
Our research interest is focused on the mechanisms that control phenotypic plasticity in stem cell population and cancer cells. We investigate the role of cell heterogeneity in development and tissue regeneration, using different strategies based on development-inspired cues and unbiased high-throughput phenotypic screenings. Recently, we got interested in understanding how cell heterogeneity influences the self-organization properties of stem cells using stem cells-derived embryo models (3D gastruloids) and tumor organoids.
Giulia Piaggio
Regina Elena National Cancer Institute
Research, Diagnosis and Innovation Technologies
via Elio Chianesi 53 - 00144 Roma
phone +39 06 52662458
Transcriptional regulation of gene expression during cell proliferation, differentiation and transformation in living cells, tissues and animals in vivo.
Mouse models to follow biological processes by bioluminescence in vivo imaging (BLI) in living animals.
Anna Maria Porcelli
Affiliation to University of Bologna
Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnology
Via Francesco Selmi 3 - 40126 Bologna
phone 3408241175
My research interests are focused on the role of mitochondria and their DNA in metabolic and hypoxic adaptation during the different phases of tumorigenesis. In recent years, my research has aimed to define respiratory complex I as a modulator of tumour progression in vitro and in vivo models.