Sant'Ambrogio di Torino, Italy
Sant'Ambrogio di Torino, Italy

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Fedirko V.,Emory University | Duarte-Salles T.,International Agency for Research on Cancer IARC WHO Lyon France | Bamia C.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Trichopoulou A.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | And 37 more authors.
Hepatology | Year: 2014

The association between vitamin D status and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has not been well investigated, despite experimental evidence supporting an important role of vitamin D in liver pathophysiology. Our objective was to investigate the association between prediagnostic circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] serum levels and the risk of HCC in a prospective, nested case-control study among 520,000 participants in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort. Each case (n=138) diagnosed between 1992 and 2010 was matched to one control by age, sex, study center, date and time of blood collection, and fasting status. Serum baseline levels of 25(OH)D were measured by liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry. Multivariable incident rate ratios (IRRs) of HCC associated with continuous (per 10 nmol/L) or categorical levels (tertiles or a priori-defined categories) of prediagnostic 25(OH)D were calculated using conditional logistic regression. Higher 25(OH)D levels were associated with a 49% reduction in the risk of HCC (highest versus lowest tertile: multivariable IRR=0.51, 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.26 to 0.99; Ptrend=0.04; per 10 nmol/L increase: IRR=0.80, 95% CI, 0.68-0.94). The finding did not vary substantially by time from enrolment to diagnosis, and did not change after adjustment for biomarkers of preexisting liver damage, nor chronic infection with hepatitis B or C viruses. The findings were not modified by body size or smoking status. Conclusion: In this prospective study on western European populations, serum levels of 25(OH)D were inversely associated with the risk of HCC. Given the rising incidence of this cancer in low-risk developed countries and the strong public health interest surrounding the potentially cancer-protective roles of vitamin D, additional studies in different populations are required. © 2014 by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.


Galvagni F.,University of Siena | Lentucci C.,University of Siena | Neri F.,HuGeF | Dettori D.,HuGeF | And 8 more authors.
Stem Cells | Year: 2015

Although much is known about the pluripotency self-renewal circuitry, the molecular events that lead embryonic stem cells (ESCs) exit from pluripotency and begin differentiation are largely unknown. We found that the zinc finger transcription factor Snai1, involved in gastrulation and epithelial-mesenchymal transition, is already expressed in the inner cell mass of the preimplantation blastocysts. In ESCs, Snai1 does not respond to TGFβ or BMP4 signaling but it is induced by retinoic acid treatment, which induces the binding, on the Snai1 promoter, of the retinoid receptors RARγ and RXRα, the dissociation of the Polycomb repressor complex 2 which results in the decrease of H3K27me3, and the increase of histone H3K4me3. Snai1 mediates the repression of pluripotency genes by binding directly to the promoters of Nanog, Nr5a2, Tcl1, c-Kit, and Tcfcp2l1. The transient activation of Snai1 in embryoid bodies induces the expression of the markers of all three germ layers. These results suggest that Snai1 is a key factor that triggers ESCs exit from the pluripotency state and initiate their differentiation processes. Stem Cells 2015;33:742-750 © 2014 AlphaMed Press.


Orlandini M.,University of Siena | Galvagni F.,University of Siena | Bardelli M.,University of Siena | Bardelli M.,Novartis | And 7 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2014

The inhibition of tumor angiogenesis is one of the main challenges in cancer therapy. With the aim of developing monoclonal antibodies able to inhibit angiogenesis, we immunized mice with proliferating human umbilical vein endothelial cells. We generated a library of monoclonal antibodies able to recognize antigens expressed on endothelial cells and screened the antibodies for their ability to inhibit endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and sprouting in vitro. Here, we show that the antibody, designated as 4E1, is able to neutralize the formation of new vessels both in vitro and in vivo without affecting endothelial cell survival. By mass spectrometry we identified CD93 as the antigen bound by 4E1 and mapped the recognized epitope. CD93 is a transmembrane protein heavily glycosylated preferentially expressed in the vascular endothelium. CD93 silencing by lentiviral-mediated small hairpin RNA expression impairs human endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and sprouting. Altogether these findings reveal 4E1 as a novel antiangiogenic antibody and identify CD93 as a new target suitable for antiangiogenic therapy.


Zamparo M.,HuGeF | Baldovin F.,University of Padua | Caraglio M.,University of Padua | Stella A.L.,University of Padua
Physical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics | Year: 2013

We present and discuss a stochastic model of financial assets dynamics based on the idea of an inverse renormalization group strategy. With this strategy we construct the multivariate distributions of elementary returns based on the scaling with time of the probability density of their aggregates. In its simplest version the model is the product of an endogenous autoregressive component and a random rescaling factor designed to embody also exogenous influences. Mathematical properties like increments' stationarity and ergodicity can be proven. Thanks to the relatively low number of parameters, model calibration can be conveniently based on a method of moments, as exemplified in the case of historical data of the S&P500 index. The calibrated model accounts very well for many stylized facts, like volatility clustering, power-law decay of the volatility autocorrelation function, and multiscaling with time of the aggregated return distribution. In agreement with empirical evidence in finance, the dynamics is not invariant under time reversal, and, with suitable generalizations, skewness of the return distribution and leverage effects can be included. The analytical tractability of the model opens interesting perspectives for applications, for instance, in terms of obtaining closed formulas for derivative pricing. Further important features are the possibility of making contact, in certain limits, with autoregressive models widely used in finance and the possibility of partially resolving the long- and short-memory components of the volatility, with consistent results when applied to historical series. © 2013 American Physical Society.

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