Viagrande, Italy
Viagrande, Italy

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Memeo L.,IOM Ricerca Srl
Diagnostic pathology | Year: 2014

BACKGROUND: Numerous clinical studies have shown that anti-EGFR therapies are effective only in a subset of patients with colorectal cancer. Mutations in the KRAS and BRAF genes have been confirmed as negative predictors of the response to EGFR-targeted therapies.In this study we evaluated KRAS and BRAF status in 159 colorectal cancer samples obtained from the University of Tirana.METHODS: We evaluated KRAS mutations in codons 12, 13, 61, 146 and in codon 600 of BRAF by direct sequencing. 90 patients were male (57%) and 69 female (43%); the patients' ages ranged from 17 to 85 (median 61.7). 24 patient were stage I, 36 stage II, 84 stage III and 15 stage IV.RESULTS: Out of the 159 cases, 28 (17,6%) showed KRAS mutation (13 G12D, 4 G12C, 4 G12V, 3 G12A, 2 G13 D, 1 G12S and 1 A146T), and 10 (6,3%) showed BRAF mutation (all V600E). No significant correlations between KRAS and BRAF mutations and various clinicopathological parameters was found.This is the first report of KRAS and BRAF status in Albanian patients with colorectal carcinoma (CRC) and though the relatively small sample size might not provide enough statistics power.CONCLUSIONS: The results of KRAS and BRAF mutation analysis could be used in the selection of patients for anti-EGFR therapy.VIRTUAL SLIDES: The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/13000_2014_187.


PubMed | IOM Ricerca srl and Instituto Oncologico del Mediterraneo
Type: | Journal: OncoTargets and therapy | Year: 2016

Activating transcription factor 5 (Quantitative real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction and immuno-histochemical staining were used to study We report here that These findings could provide potential applications in PTC cancer treatment.


Pagliuca A.,Instituto Superiore Of Sanita | Valvo C.,Italian National Cancer Institute | Fabrizi E.,Instituto Superiore Of Sanita | Di Martino S.,Instituto Superiore Of Sanita | And 6 more authors.
Oncogene | Year: 2013

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) from the gene cluster miR-143-145 are diminished in cells of colorectal tumor origin when compared with normal colon epithelia. Until now, no report has addressed the coordinate action of these miRNAs in colorectal cancer (CRC). In this study, we performed a comprehensive molecular and functional analysis of the miRNA cluster regulatory network. First, we evaluated proliferation, migration, anchorage-independent growth and chemoresistance in the colon tumor cell lines after miR-143 and miR-145 restoration. Then, we assessed the contribution of single genes targeted by miR-143 and miR-145 by reinforcing their expression and checking functional recovery. Restoring miR-143 and miR-145 in colon cancer cells decreases proliferation, migration and chemoresistance. We identified cluster of differentiation 44 (CD44), Kruppel-like factor 5 (KLF5), Kirsten rat sarcoma 2 viral oncogene homolog (KRAS) and v-Raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B1 (BRAF) as proteins targeted by miR-143 and miR-145. Their re-expression can partially revert a decrease in transformation properties caused by the overexpression of miR-143 and miR-145. In addition, we determined a set of mRNAs that are diminished after reinforcing miR-143 and miR-145 expression. The whole transcriptome analysis ascertained that downregulated transcripts are enriched in predicted target genes in a statistically significant manner. A number of additional genes, whose expression decreases as a direct or indirect consequence of miR-143 and miR-145, reveals a complex regulatory network that affects cell signaling pathways involved in transformation. In conclusion, we identified a coordinated program of gene repression by miR-143 and miR-145, in CRC, where either of the two miRNAs share a target transcript, or where the target transcripts share a common signaling pathway. Major mediators of the oncosuppression by miR-143 and miR-145 are genes belonging to the growth factor receptor-mitogen-activated protein kinase network and to the p53 signaling pathway. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited All rights reserved 0950-9232/13.


Romano A.,University of Catania | Chiarenza A.,Azienda Policlinico OVE | Consoli U.,ARNAS Garibaldi | Conticello C.,Mediterranean Institute of Oncology | And 7 more authors.
Annals of Oncology | Year: 2013

Background: A combination of bortezomib (1.3mg/2), melphalan (5mg/2), and dexamethasone (40mg) (BMD), with all three drugs given as a contemporary intravenous administration, was retrospectively evaluated. Patients and methods: Fifty previously treated (median 2 previous lines) patients with myeloma (33 relapsed and 17 refractory) were assessed. The first 19 patients were treated with a twice-a-week (days 1, 4, 8, 11, 'base' schedule) administration while, in the remaining 31 patients, the three drugs were administered once a week (days 1, 8, 15, 22, 'weekly' schedule). Results: Side-effects were predictable and manageable, with prominent haematological toxicity, and a better toxic profile in 'weekly' schedule (36% versus 66% in 'base' schedule). The overall response rate was 62%. After median follow-up of 24.5 months (range 2.7-50 months), the median progression-free survival (PFS) was 21.6 with no difference between the two schedules and the median overall survival (OS) was 33.8 months. Independently from the adopted schedule, we found that also in a cohort of relapsed/refractory patients achieving at least partial remission improved PFS (35.2 versus 9 months) and OS (unreached median versus 18 months). Conclusion: Taken together, our observations suggest that BMD is an effective regimen in advanced myeloma patients with acceptable toxicity. © The Author 2012. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society for Medical Oncology. All rights reserved.


Romano A.,University of Catania | Parrinello N.L.,University of Catania | Vetro C.,University of Catania | Forte S.,IOM Ricerca s.r.l. | And 7 more authors.
British Journal of Haematology | Year: 2015

Summary: In the attempt to find a peripheral blood biological marker that could mirror the dysregulated microenvironment of Hodgkin Lymphoma (HL), we analysed the amount of myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC), including the three main sub-types (monocytic, granulocytic and CD34 + fraction). The absolute MDSC count was investigated in 60 consecutive newly diagnosed HL patients and correlated with clinical variables at diagnosis and outcome. Patients received standard-of-care chemotherapy with the exception of interim fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (PET-2)-positive patients, who were switched early to a salvage regimen. All MDSC subsets were increased in HL patients compared to normal subjects (P < 0·0001) and were higher in non-responders. However, a strong prognostic significance was limited to immature (CD34+) MDSC. A cut-off level of 0·0045 × 109/l for CD34+MDSC resulted in 89% (95% confidence interval [CI] 52-99%) sensitivity and 92% (95% CI 81-98%) specificity. The positive predictive value to predict progression-free survival was 0·90 for PET-2 and 0·98 for CD34+MDSC count; the negative predictive value was 0·57 for PET-2 and 0·73 for CD34+MDSC. PFS was significantly shorter in patients with more than 0·0045 × 109 CD34+MDSC cells/l at diagnosis and/or PET-2 positivity (P < 0·0001). In conclusion, all circulating MDSC subsets are increased in HL; CD34+MDSC predict short PFS, similarly to PET-2 but with the advantage of being available at diagnosis. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Gulino R.,University of Catania | Gulino R.,IOM Ricerca s.r.l | Forte S.,IOM Ricerca s.r.l | Parenti R.,University of Catania | Gulisano M.,University of Catania
CNS and Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets | Year: 2015

Transactive response DNA-binding protein of 43 kDa (TDP-43) is a nuclear DNA/RNA-binding protein involved in gene transcription and mRNA processing. Recently, TDP-43 has been found in the cytoplasmic inclusions observed in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Substantial attention has been devoted to the toxic effects of the cytoplasmic TDP-43 aggregates, whereas the functional role of this protein remains poorly investigated. Interestingly, TDP-43 could be localized in the synapse and affect synaptic plasticity and locomotion in Drosophila. Here, we would like to understand if TDP-43 could modulate spinal cord plasticity in a mouse model of neurotoxic motoneuron depletion. Therefore, the expression levels of TDP- 43 and synaptic proteins such as synapsin-I and the α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4- isoxazolepropionate (AMPA) receptor subunits GluR1, GluR2 and GluR4 were measured by western blotting. By using multivariate regression models, protein expression levels were correlated each other as well as with the motor performance. The results suggested that motor performance could be linked to the expression of synapsin-I, and that the latter could depend on TDP-43, which in turn could interact with AMPA receptors. In conclusion, our results suggest that TDP-43 is likely involved in the modulation of synaptic plasticity. Given the increasing interest in mouse models of TDP-43 gain or loss of function in neurodegenerative diseases, the elucidation of the role of TDP-43 in the spinal cord is mandatory. More generally, given the recently increased knowledge about spinal cord plasticity, we postulate that the stimulation of the intrinsic plastic potential of spinal cord would be a successful repairing strategy. © 2015 Bentham Science Publishers.


Colarossi C.,Mediterranean Institute of Oncology | Pino P.,Mediterranean Institute of Oncology | Giuffrida D.,Mediterranean Institute of Oncology | Aiello E.,Mediterranean Institute of Oncology | And 3 more authors.
Diagnostic Pathology | Year: 2013

Neuroendocrine carcinoma of the urinary bladder is a rare entity, accounting less then 1% of urinary bladder malignancies. The vast majority of the neuroendocrine carcinoma of the urinary bladder is represented by small cell neuroendocrine carcinoma while just few cases of large cell neuroendocrine carcinoma (LCNEC) have been reported. In this cases report we describe a rare case of primary bladder LCNEC.Virtual Slides: The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/2474700528951562. © 2013 Colarossi et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


PubMed | IOM Ricerca s.r.l. and University of Catania
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Acta histochemica | Year: 2015

A better understanding of pediatric tumor biology is needed to allow the development of less toxic and more efficient therapies, as well as to provide novel reliable biomarkers for diagnosis and risk stratification. The emerging role of microRNAs in controlling key pathways implicated in tumorigenesis makes their use in diagnostics a powerful novel tool for the early detection, risk assessment and prognosis, as well as for the development of innovative anticancer therapies. This perspective would be more urgent for the clinical management of pediatric cancer. In this review, we focus on the involvement of microRNAs in the biology of the main childhood tumors, describe their clinical significance and discuss their potential use as novel therapeutic tools and targets.


PubMed | IOM Ricerca srl and University of Catania
Type: | Journal: Progress in brain research | Year: 2015

Glaucoma is a progressive optic neuropathy and is one of the leading causes of blindness in the industrialized countries. The aim of this study is to investigate microRNA (miRNA) regulation in glaucoma and other neurodegenerative diseases, that share similar pathways, by means of in silico approaches such as bibliographic search and access to bioinformatic resources. First of all, data mining was carried out on Human miRNA Disease Database (HMDD) and miR2Disease databases. Then, predictions of deregulated miRNAs were carried out accessing to microrna.org database. Finally, the potential combinatorial effect of miRNAs, on regulation of biochemical pathways, was studied by an enrichment analysis performed by DIANA-miRPath v.2.0. We found, from literature search, 8 deregulated miRNAs in glaucoma and 9 and 23 in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and Alzheimers disease (AD), respectively. One miRNA is commonly deregulated in glaucoma and AMD (miR-23a). Two miRNAs (miR-29a, miR-29b) are common to glaucoma and AD, and four miRNAs were identified to be commonly deregulated in AMD and AD (miR-9, miR-21, miR-34a, miR-146a). The match of the miRNA common to glaucoma and the other two neurodegenerative diseases (AMD and AD) did not generate any output. Enrichment of information has been reached through miRNAs prediction: 88 predicted miRNAs are common to glaucoma and AMD, 19 are common to glaucoma and AD, and 9 are common to AMD and AD. Indeed, predicted miRNAs common to the three neurodegenerative diseases are nine (miR-107, miR-137, miR-146a, miR-181c, miR-197, miR-21, miR-22, miR-590, miR-9). DIANA-miRPath predicted that those nine miRNAs might regulate pathways involved in inflammation. The findings hereby obtained provide a valuable hint to assess deregulation of specific miRNA, as potential biomarkers and therapeutic targets, in glaucoma and other neurodegenerative diseases by means of preclinical and clinical studies.


PubMed | IOM Ricerca SRL, University of Catania and University of Catanzaro
Type: Clinical Trial | Journal: PloS one | Year: 2015

Tithonia diversifolia (Hemsl.) A. Gray (Asteraceae) is widely used in traditional medicine. There is increasing interest on the in vivo protective effects of natural compounds contained in plants against oxidative damage caused from reactive oxygen species. In the present study the total phenolic and flavonoid contents of aqueous, methanol and dichloromethane extracts of leaves of Tithonia diversifolia (Hemsl.) A. Gray were determined; furthermore, free radical scavenging capacity of each extract and the ability of these extracts to inhibit in vitro plasma lipid peroxidation were also evaluated. Since oxidative stress may be involved in trasformation of pre-adipocytes into adipocytes, to test the hypothesis that Tithonia extract may also affect adipocyte differentiation, human mesenchymal stem cell cultures were treated with Tithonia diversifolia aqueous extract and cell viability, free radical levels, Oil-Red O staining and western bolt analysis for heme oxygenase and 5-adenosine monophoshate-activated protein kinase were carried out. Results obtained in the present study provide evidence that Tithonia diversifolia (Hemsl.) A. Gray exhibits interesting health promoting properties, resulting both from its free radical scavenger capacity and also by induction of protective cellular systems involved in cellular stress defenses and in adipogenesis of mesenchymal cells.

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