Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies

Sant'Ambrogio di Torino, Italy

Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies

Sant'Ambrogio di Torino, Italy
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Rolla S.,Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies | Bardina V.,Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies | Quaglino P.,University of Turin | De Palma R.,The Second University of Naples | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Leukocyte Biology | Year: 2014

Th1 and Th17 cells have been considered as effectors in mouse EAE and in the human counterpart, MS. Recently, IL-22, a Th17-related, proinflammatory cytokine, has been associated with a new Th cell subset, defined as Th22, involved in chronic inflammatory conditions, such as psoriasis; the role of IL-22 in MS has not yet been elucidated. Here, we report that similar to Th17 cells, the number of Th22 cells increased in the PB and the CSF of RR MS patients, especially during the active phases of the disease. However, as opposed to Th17 cells, the expansion of Th22 cells occurred before the active phases of the disease. Th22 cells were found to be specific for the autoantigen MBP and also expressed high levels of CCR6 and T-bet, as for Th17 cells, indicating that Th22 self-reactive cells could have CNS-homing properties and be pathogenic in active RRMS patients. Conversely to Th17 cells, Th22 cells displayed lower levels of IFNAR1 and were insensitive to IFN-βinhibition. These data suggest that expansion of Th22 cells in MS could be one of the factors that critically influence resistance to IFN-βtherapy. © Society for Leukocyte Biology.

Stacchini A.,Molinette Hospital | Barreca A.,Molinette Hospital | Demurtas A.,Molinette Hospital | Aliberti S.,Molinette Hospital | And 2 more authors.
Histopathology | Year: 2012

Aim: To report unusual CD56 (neural cell adhesion molecule, NCAM) expression on diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Methods and results: CD56 expression was first detected and quantified on tissues obtained from five cases of DLBCL by flow cytometry (FC), then confirmed by immunohistochemistry. The CD56 expression pattern was heterogeneous among the cases [the molecular equivalent of soluble fluorochrome (MESF) level ranged from 2214 to 133466]. All were CD10 and Bcl-6 positive, suggesting their germinal centre origin; one was also CD5 positive. An extranodal presentation occurred in three of five cases. Conclusions: CD56 expression in B cell lymphoma is a rare occurrence. FC is able to identify aberrant immunophenotypes that can be useful in the identification and monitoring of B cell lymphoma subtypes. The presence of CD56 reported by the literature on certain DLBCL with extranodal presentation might be related to mechanisms involved in growth and expansion. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Limited.

Taulli R.,University of Turin | Taulli R.,Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies | Foglizzo V.,University of Turin | Foglizzo V.,Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies | And 12 more authors.
Oncogene | Year: 2014

Rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS), the most common soft tissue sarcoma in children and young adults, is characterized by a partially differentiated myogenic phenotype. We have previously shown that the blocking of tumor growth and resumption of differentiation can be achieved by re-expression of miR-206, a muscle-enriched microRNA missing in RMS. In this work, we focused on BAF53a, one of the genes downregulated in miR-206-expressing RMS cells, which codes for a subunit of the SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complex. Here we show that the BAF53a transcript is significantly higher in primary RMS tumors than in normal muscle, and is a direct target of miR-206. Sustained expression of BAF53a interferes with differentiation in myogenic cells, whereas its silencing in RMS cells increases expression of myogenic markers and inhibits proliferation and anchorage-independent growth. Accordingly, BAF53a silencing also impairs embryonal RMS and alveolar RMS tumor growth, inducing their morphological and biochemical differentiation. These results indicate that failure to downregulate the BAF53a subunit may contribute to the pathogenesis of RMS, and suggest that BAF53a may represent a novel therapeutic target for this tumor.

Serra S.,University of Turin | Horenstein A.L.,University of Turin | Vaisitti T.,University of Turin | Brusa D.,University of Turin | And 10 more authors.
Blood | Year: 2011

Extracellular adenosine (ADO), generated from ATP or ADP through the concerted action of the ectoenzymes CD39 and CD73, elicits autocrine and paracrine effects mediated by type 1 purinergic receptors. We have tested whether the expression of CD39 and CD73 by chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) cells activates an adenosinergic axis affecting growth and survival. By immunohistochemistry, CD39 is widely expressed in CLL lymph nodes, whereas CD73 is restricted to proliferation centers. CD73 expression is highest on Ki-67 + CLL cells, adjacent to T lymphocytes, and is further localized to perivascular areas. CD39 +/ CD73 +/ + CLL cells generate ADO from ADP in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. In peripheral blood, CD73 expression occurs in 97/299 (32%) CLL patients and pairs with CD38 and ZAP-70 expression. CD73-generated extracellular ADO activates type 1 purinergic A2A receptors that are constitutively expressed by CLL cells and that are further elevated in proliferating neoplastic cells. Activation of the ADO receptors increases cytoplasmic cAMP levels, inhibiting chemotaxis and limiting spontaneous drug-induced apoptosis of CLL cells. These data are consistent with the existence of an autocrine adenosinergic loop, and support engraftment of leukemic cells in growth-favorable niches, while simultaneously protecting from the action of chemotherapeutic agents. © 2011 by The American Society of Hematology.

Roato I.,Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies | Porta F.,University of Turin | Mussa A.,University of Turin | D'Amico L.,Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies | And 5 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2010

Background: Phenylketonuria (PKU) is a rare inborn error of metabolism often complicated by a progressive bone impairment of uncertain etiology, as documented by both ionizing and non- ionizing techniques. Methodology: Peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) cultures were performed to study osteoclastogenesis, in the presence or absence of recombinant human monocyte-colony stimulating factor (M-CSF) and receptor activator of NFκB ligand (RANKL). Flow cytometry was utilized to analyze osteoclast precursors (OCPs) and T cell phenotype. Tumour necrosis factor α (TNF-α), RANKL and osteoprotegerin (OPG) were quantified in cell culture supernatants by ELISA. The effects of RANKFc and anti-TNF-α antibodies were also investigated to determine their ability to inhibit osteoclastogenesis. In addition, bone conditions and phenylalanine levels in PKU patients were clinically evaluated. Principal Findings: Several in vitro studies in PKU patients' cells identified a potential mechanism of bone formation inhibition commonly associated with this disorder. First, PKU patients disclosed an increased osteoclastogenesis compared to healthy controls, both in unstimulated and M-CSF/RANKL stimulated PBMC cultures. OCPs and the measured RANKL/OPG ratio were higher in PKU patients compared to healthy controls. The addition of specific antagonist RANKFc caused osteoclastogenesis inhibition, whereas anti-TNF-α failed to have this effect. Among PBMCs isolated from PKU patients, activated T cells, expressing CD69, CD25 and RANKL were identified. Confirmatory in vivo studies support this proposed model. These in vivo studies included the analysis of osteoclastogenesis in PKU patients, which demonstrated an inverse relation to bone condition assessed by phalangeal Quantitative Ultrasound (QUS). This was also directly related to noncompliance to therapeutic diet reflected by hyperphenylalaninemia. Conclusions: Our results indicate that PKU spontaneous osteoclastogenesis depends on the circulating OCP increase and the activation of T cells. Osteoclastogenesis correlates with clinical parameters, suggesting its value as a diagnostic tool for an early assessment of an increased bone resorption in PKU patients. © 2010 Roato et al.

PubMed | University of Turin, Immunogenetic and Transplant Biology Service and Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Immunology letters | Year: 2015

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is the fourth cause of cancer-induced death in the Western World. In PDAC patients, alpha-enolase (ENOA), a glycolytic enzyme that also acts as plasminogen receptor, is up-regulated and elicits the production of autoantibodies. Our previous studies revealed that most PDAC patients specifically produce antibodies to Serine(419)phosphorylated ENOA (Ser(419)P-ENOA) isoforms (ENOA1,2), and that this humoral response correlates with a better clinical outcome. Since autoantibody production can be influenced by HLA polymorphisms, and the ENOA sequence presents multiple peptides predicted to preferentially bind HLA-DR molecules, including the peptide containing Ser(419), we hypothesized that the presence of autoantibodies against ENOA1,2 is associated with specific HLA-DRB1 alleles. Here, we demonstrate that the HLA-DRB1*08 allele is significantly more frequent in PDAC patients with autoantibodies to ENOA1,2 (ENOA1,2(+), 8%) compared to healthy controls (3%, p=0.0112). We observed that a Ser(419)P-ENOA peptide, bioinformatically predicted to bind with high affinity to the HLA-DR8 allele coded by HLA-DRB1*08:01 or *08:04 alleles, was able to activate specific CD4(+) T cell clones derived from a HLA-DRB1*08:01. Thus complexes of the Ser(419)P-ENOA peptide with the HLA that trigger T-cell signaling might be relevant for induction of anti-tumor immune response.

PubMed | University of Turin and Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies
Type: | Journal: Frontiers in bioscience (Landmark edition) | Year: 2016

Alpha-enolase (

PubMed | University of Turin and Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Oncotarget | Year: 2015

The immunoglobulin heavy-chain variable region (IGHV) mutational status is a strong determinant of remission duration in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). The aim of this work was to compare the multidrug resistance (MDR) signature of IGHV mutated and unmutated CLL cells, identifying biochemical and molecular targets potentially amenable to therapeutic intervention.We found that the mevalonate pathway-dependent Ras/ERK1-2 and RhoA/RhoA kinase signaling cascades, and the downstream HIF-1/P-glycoprotein axis were more active in IGHV unmutated than in mutated cells, leading to a constitutive protection from doxorubicin-induced cytotoxicity. The constitutive MDR phenotype of IGHV unmutated cells was partially dependent on B cell receptor signaling, as shown by the inhibitory effect exerted by ibrutinib. Stromal cells further protected IGHV unmutated cells from doxorubicin by upregulating Ras/ERK1-2, RhoA/RhoA kinase, Akt, HIF-1 and P-glycoprotein activities. Mevalonate pathway inhibition with simvastatin abrogated these signaling pathways and reversed the resistance of IGHV unmutated cells to doxorubicin, also counteracting the protective effect exerted by stromal cells. Similar results were obtained via the targeted inhibition of the downstream molecules ERK1-2, RhoA kinase and HIF-1.Therefore, targeting the mevalonate pathway and its downstream signaling cascades is a promising strategy to circumvent the MDR signature of IGHV unmutated CLL cells.

PubMed | University of Turin, Fondazione IRCCS Instituto Nazionale Tumori, U.S. National Institutes of Health and Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies
Type: | Journal: eLife | Year: 2016

Embryonal Rhabdomyosarcoma (ERMS) and Undifferentiated Pleomorphic Sarcoma (UPS) are distinct sarcoma subtypes. Here we investigate the relevance of the satellite cell (SC) niche in sarcoma development by using Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) to perturb the niche microenvironment. In a Pax7 wild type background, HGF stimulation mainly causes ERMS that originate from satellite cells following a process of multistep progression. Conversely, in a Pax7 null genotype ERMS incidence drops, while UPS becomes the most frequent subtype. Murine EfRMS display genetic heterogeneity similar to their human counterpart. Altogether, our data demonstrate that selective perturbation of the SC niche results in distinct sarcoma subtypes in a Pax7 lineage-dependent manner, and define a critical role for the Met axis in sarcoma initiation. Finally, our results provide a rationale for the use of combination therapy, tailored on specific amplifications and activated signaling pathways, to minimize resistance emerging from sarcomas heterogeneity.

PubMed | University of Turin, Center for Experimental Research and Medical Studies, International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, National Health Research Institute and 2 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Oncotarget | Year: 2015

Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a highly aggressive malignancy characterized by rapid progression, invasiveness and resistance to treatment. We have previously demonstrated that most PDAC patients have circulating antibodies against the glycolytic enzyme alpha-enolase (ENO1), which correlates with a better response to therapy and survival. ENO1 is a metabolic enzyme, also expressed on the cell surface where it acts as a plasminogen receptor. ENO1 play a crucial role in cell invasion and metastasis by promoting plasminogen activation into plasmin, a serine-protease involved in extracellular matrix degradation. The aim of this study was to investigate the role of ENO1 in PDAC cell invasion. We observed that ENO1 was expressed on the cell surface of most PDAC cell lines. Mouse anti-human ENO1 monoclonal antibodies inhibited plasminogen-dependent invasion of human PDAC cells, and their metastatic spreading in immunosuppressed mice was inhibited. Notably, a single administration of Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV)-expressing cDNA coding for 72/1 anti-ENO1 mAb reduced the number of lung metastases in immunosuppressed mice injected with PDAC cells. Overall, these data indicate that ENO1 is involved in PDAC cell invasion, and that administration of an anti-ENO1 mAb can be exploited as a novel therapeutic option to increase the survival of metastatic PDAC patients.

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