Ariano Irpino, Italy
Ariano Irpino, Italy

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Iacomino G.,CNR Institute of Neuroscience | Russo P.,CNR Institute of Neuroscience | Stillitano I.,CNR Institute of Neuroscience | Lauria F.,CNR Institute of Neuroscience | And 5 more authors.
Genes and Nutrition | Year: 2016

Background: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs involved in the modulation of gene expression and in the control of numerous cell functions. Alterations of miRNA patterns frequently occur in cancer and metabolic disorders, including obesity. Recent studies showed remarkable stability of miRNAs in both plasma and serum making them suitable as potential circulating biomarkers for a variety of diseases and conditions. The aim of this study was to assess the profile of circulating miRNAs expressed in plasma samples of overweight or obese (OW/Ob) and normal weight (NW) prepubertal children from a European cohort (www.ifamilystudy.eu). The project, aimed to assess the determinants of eating behavior in children and adolescents of eight European countries, is built on the IDEFICS cohort (www.ideficsstudy.eu), established in 2006. Among the participants of the I.Family Italian Cohort, ten OW/Ob (age 10.7 ± 1.5 years, BMI 31.6 ± 4.3 kg/m2) and ten NW (age 10.5 ± 2.7 years, BMI 16.4 ± 1.7 kg/m2) children were selected for the study. Gene arrays were employed to differentially screen the expression of 372 miRNAs in pooled plasma samples. Deregulated miRNAs (p < 0.05) were further validated in the individual samples using a real-time PCR (RT-qPCR) approach. Results: Using a significance threshold of p < 0.05 and a fold-change threshold of ± 4.0, we preliminarily identified in the pooled samples eight miRNAs that differed between the OW/Ob and NW groups. The validation by RT-qPCR in the individual plasma samples showed a twofold upregulation of miR-31-5p, a threefold upregulation of miR-2355-5p, and a 0.5-fold downregulation of miR-206 in OW/Ob as compared with NW. The molecular functions of these differentially expressed plasma miRNAs as well as their expected mRNA targets were predicted by bioinformatics tools. Conclusions: This pilot study shows that three circulating miRNAs are differentially regulated in OW/Ob as compared with NW children. Although causal pathways cannot be firmly inferred by these results, that deserve confirmation in larger samples, it is conceivable that circulating miRNAs may be novel biomarkers of obesity and related metabolic disturbances. © 2016 Iacomino et al.


Scudiero I.,Biogem | Scudiero I.,University of Sannio | Zotti T.,Biogem | Zotti T.,University of Sannio | And 8 more authors.
Journal of Cellular Physiology | Year: 2011

The caspase recruitment domain (CARD)-containing proteins CARMA1-3 share high degree of sequence, structure and functional homology. Whereas CARMA1 and CARMA3 have been identified as crucial components of signal transduction pathways that lead to activation of NF-κB transcription factor, little is known about the function of CARMA2. Here we report the identification of two splice variants of CARMA2. One transcript, named CARMA2short (CARMA2sh), is predicted to encode for a CARMA2 polypeptide containing the CARD, coiled coil, and a PDZ domains, but lacking the SH3 and the GuK domains. The second variant, CARMA2cardless (CARMA2cl), encodes for a polypeptide lacking the CARD domain and containing only a portion of the coiled coil domain and a linker region. Expression analysis confirmed the presence of the CARMA2 alternatively spliced transcripts in both human cell lines and tissues. Fluorescence microscopy data show that both splice variants localize in the cytosol. Biochemical experiments indicate that CARMA2sh interacts with TRAF2 and activates NF-κB in a TRAF2-dependent manner. Finally, CARMA2sh variant protects cells from apoptosis induced by different stimuli. Taken together, these results demonstrate that multiple transcripts encoding several CARMA2 isoforms exist in vivo and regulate NF-κB activation and apoptosis. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.


Zotti T.,Biogem | Scudiero I.,Biogem | Settembre P.,Biogem | Settembre P.,University of Sannio | And 10 more authors.
Molecular Immunology | Year: 2014

The atypical protein kinase C-interacting protein p62/sequestosome-1 (p62) has emerged as a crucial molecule in a variety of cellular functions due to its involvement in various signaling mechanisms. p62 has been implicated in the activation of NF-κB in TNFα-stimulated cells and has been shown to be activated in response to interleukin-1β (IL-1β). Here we demonstrate that p62 interacts with NEMO, the regulatory subunit of the complex responsible for activation of NF-κB transcription factor. Depletion of p62 obtained through a short interfering RNA targeting p62 mRNA abrogated TRAF6 capacity to promote NEMO ubiquitination and severely impairs NF-κB activation following IL-1β stimulation.Together, these results indicate that p62 is an important intermediary in the NF-κB activation pathways implemented through non-degradative ubiquitination events. © 2013 The Author.


Anjum S.,Qatar Computing Research Institute | Morganella S.,European Bioinformatics Institute | D'Angelo F.,BIOGEM | Iavarone A.,Columbia University | And 2 more authors.
BMC Bioinformatics | Year: 2015

Background: Copy number variations are important in the detection and progression of significant tumors and diseases. Recently, Whole Exome Sequencing is gaining popularity with copy number variations detection due to low cost and better efficiency. In this work, we developed VEGAWES for accurate and robust detection of copy number variations on WES data. VEGAWES is an extension to a variational based segmentation algorithm, VEGA: Variational estimator for genomic aberrations, which has previously outperformed several algorithms on segmenting array comparative genomic hybridization data. Results: We tested this algorithm on synthetic data and 100 Glioblastoma Multiforme primary tumor samples. The results on the real data were analyzed with segmentation obtained from Single-nucleotide polymorphism data as ground truth. We compared our results with two other segmentation algorithms and assessed the performance based on accuracy and time. Conclusions: In terms of both accuracy and time, VEGAWES provided better results on the synthetic data and tumor samples demonstrating its potential in robust detection of aberrant regions in the genome. © 2015 Anjum et al.


PubMed | Biogem, University of Sannio and Qatar University
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Molecular immunology | Year: 2014

The atypical protein kinase C-interacting protein p62/sequestosome-1 (p62) has emerged as a crucial molecule in a variety of cellular functions due to its involvement in various signaling mechanisms. p62 has been implicated in the activation of NF-B in TNF-stimulated cells and has been shown to be activated in response to interleukin-1 (IL-1). Here we demonstrate that p62 interacts with NEMO, the regulatory subunit of the complex responsible for activation of NF-B transcription factor. Depletion of p62 obtained through a short interfering RNA targeting p62 mRNA abrogated TRAF6 capacity to promote NEMO ubiquitination and severely impairs NF-B activation following IL-1 stimulation. Together, these results indicate that p62 is an important intermediary in the NF-B activation pathways implemented through non-degradative ubiquitination events.


PubMed | Biogem, University of Sannio and University of Naples Federico II
Type: Journal Article | Journal: PloS one | Year: 2015

The complexes formed by BCL10, MALT1 and specific members of the family of CARMA proteins (CBM complex), have recently focused much attention because they represent a central hub regulating activation of the transcription factor NF-B following various cellular stimulations. In this manuscript, we report the functional characterization of a Danio rerio 241 amino acids polypeptide ortholog of the Caspase recruiting domain (CARD)-containing protein BCL10. Biochemical studies show that zebrafish Bcl10 (zBcl10) dimerizes and binds to components of the CBM complex. Fluorescence microscopy observations demonstrate that zBcl10 forms cytoplasmic filaments similar to that formed by human BCL10 (hBCL10). Functionally, in human cells zBcl10 is more effective in activating NF-B compared to hBCL10, possibly due to the lack of carboxy-terminal inhibitory serine residues present in the human protein. Also, depletion experiments carried out through expression of short hairpin RNAs targeting hBCL10 indicate that zBcl10 can functionally replace the human protein. Finally, we show that the zebrafish cell line PAC2 is suitable to carry out reporter assays for monitoring the activation state of NF- kB transcription factor. In conclusion, this work shows that zebrafish may excellently serve as a model organism to study complex and intricate signal transduction pathways, such as those that control NF-B activation.


PubMed | Biogem and University of Sannio
Type: | Journal: FEBS open bio | Year: 2015

The complexes formed by BCL10, MALT1 and members of the family of CARMA proteins have recently been the focus of much attention because they represent a key mechanism for regulating activation of the transcription factor NF-B. Here, we report the functional characterization of a novel isoform of BCL10 in the trout Oncorhynchus mykiss, which we named tBCL10. tBCL10 dimerizes, binds to components of the CBM complex and forms cytoplasmic filaments. Functionally, tBCL10 activates NF-B transcription factor and is inhibited by the deubiquitinating enzyme A20. Finally, depletion experiments indicate that tBCL10 can functionally replace the human protein. This work demonstrates the evolutionary conservation of the mechanism of NF-B activation through the CBM complex, and indicates that the rainbow trout O . mykiss can serve as a model organism to study this pathway.


PubMed | European Bioinformatics Institute, BIOGEM, Qatar Computing Research Institute and Columbia University
Type: | Journal: BMC bioinformatics | Year: 2015

Copy number variations are important in the detection and progression of significant tumors and diseases. Recently, Whole Exome Sequencing is gaining popularity with copy number variations detection due to low cost and better efficiency. In this work, we developed VEGAWES for accurate and robust detection of copy number variations on WES data. VEGAWES is an extension to a variational based segmentation algorithm, VEGA: Variational estimator for genomic aberrations, which has previously outperformed several algorithms on segmenting array comparative genomic hybridization data.We tested this algorithm on synthetic data and 100 Glioblastoma Multiforme primary tumor samples. The results on the real data were analyzed with segmentation obtained from Single-nucleotide polymorphism data as ground truth. We compared our results with two other segmentation algorithms and assessed the performance based on accuracy and time.In terms of both accuracy and time, VEGAWES provided better results on the synthetic data and tumor samples demonstrating its potential in robust detection of aberrant regions in the genome.


The caspase recruitment domain (CARD)-containing proteins CARMA1-3 share high degree of sequence, structure and functional homology. Whereas CARMA1 and CARMA3 have been identified as crucial components of signal transduction pathways that lead to activation of NF-B transcription factor, little is known about the function of CARMA2. Here we report the identification of two splice variants of CARMA2. One transcript, named CARMA2short (CARMA2sh), is predicted to encode for a CARMA2 polypeptide containing the CARD, coiled coil, and a PDZ domains, but lacking the SH3 and the GuK domains. The second variant, CARMA2cardless (CARMA2cl), encodes for a polypeptide lacking the CARD domain and containing only a portion of the coiled coil domain and a linker region. Expression analysis confirmed the presence of the CARMA2 alternatively spliced transcripts in both human cell lines and tissues. Fluorescence microscopy data show that both splice variants localize in the cytosol. Biochemical experiments indicate that CARMA2sh interacts with TRAF2 and activates NF-B in a TRAF2-dependent manner. Finally, CARMA2sh variant protects cells from apoptosis induced by different stimuli. Taken together, these results demonstrate that multiple transcripts encoding several CARMA2 isoforms exist in vivo and regulate NF-B activation and apoptosis.


PubMed | Biogem
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Endocrinology | Year: 2011

In vertebrates the portion of the thyroid gland synthesizing the thyroid hormones develops from a small group of endodermal cells in the foregut. The nature of the signals that lead to the biochemical and morphogenetic events responsible for the organization of these cells into the adult thyroid gland has only recently become evident. In this review we summarize recent developments in the understanding of these processes, derived from evidence collected in several organisms.

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