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Riccio P.,University of Basilicata | Riccio P.,Italian National Institute of Biosystems and Biostructures
Complementary Therapies in Medicine

It is commonly accepted that nutrition is one of the possible environmental factors involved in the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS), but its role as complementary MS treatment is unclear and largely disregarded. At present, MS therapy is not associated to a particular diet, probably due to lack of information on the effects of nutrition on the disease. To overcome the distrust of the usefulness of dietary control in MS and to encourage nutritional interventions in the course of the disease, it is necessary to assess the nature and the role of bioactive dietary molecules and their targets, and establish how a dietary control can influence cell metabolism and improve the wellness of MS patients.The aim of this review is to provide a rationale for a nutritional intervention in MS by evaluating at the molecular level the effects of dietary molecules on the inflammatory and autoimmune processes involved in the disease. Present data reveal that healthy dietary molecules have a pleiotropic role and are able to change cell metabolism from anabolism to catabolism and down-regulate inflammation by interacting with enzymes, nuclear receptors and transcriptional factors. The control of gut dysbiosis and the combination of hypo-caloric, low-fat diets with specific vitamins, oligoelements and dietary integrators, including fish oil and polyphenols, may slow-down the progression of the disease and ameliorate the wellness of MS patients. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Mariani S.,University of Florence | Minunni M.,University of Florence | Minunni M.,Italian National Institute of Biosystems and Biostructures
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry

In the last 20 years, surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and its advancement with imaging (SPRi) emerged as a suitable and reliable platform in clinical analysis for label-free, sensitive, and real-time monitoring of biomolecular interactions. Thus, we report in this review the state of the art of clinical target detection with SPR-based biosensors in complex matrices (e.g., serum, saliva, blood, and urine) as well as in standard solution when innovative approaches or advanced instrumentations were employed for improved detection. The principles of SPR-based biosensors are summarized first, focusing on the physical properties of the transducer, on the assays design, on the immobilization chemistry, and on new trends for implementing system analytical performances (e.g., coupling with nanoparticles (NPs). Then we critically review the detection of analytes of interest in molecular diagnostics, such as hormones (relevant also for anti-doping control) and biomarkers of interest in inflammatory, cancer, and heart failure diseases. Antibody detection is reported in relation to immune disorder diagnostics. Subsequently, nucleic acid targets are considered for revealing genetic diseases (e.g., point mutation and single nucleotides polymorphism, SNPs) as well as new emerging clinical markers (microRNA) and for pathogen detection. Finally, examples of pathogen detection by immunosensing were also analyzed. A parallel comparison with the reference methods was duly made, indicating the progress brought about by SPR technologies in clinical routine analysis. © 2014 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source

Peracchi A.,University of Parma | Mozzarelli A.,University of Parma | Mozzarelli A.,Italian National Institute of Biosystems and Biostructures
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - Proteins and Proteomics

The concept of allostery was elaborated almost 50 years ago by Monod and coworkers to provide a framework for interpreting experimental studies on the regulation of protein function. In essence, binding of a ligand at an allosteric site affects the function at a distant site exploiting protein flexibility and reshaping protein energy landscape. Both monomeric and oligomeric proteins can be allosteric. In the past decades, the behavior of allosteric systems has been analyzed in many investigations while general theoretical models and variations thereof have been steadily proposed to interpret the experimental data. Allostery has been established as a fundamental mechanism of regulation in all organisms, governing a variety of processes that range from metabolic control to receptor function and from ligand transport to cell motility. A number of studies have shed light on how evolutionary pressures have favored and molded the development of allosteric features in specific macromolecular systems. The widespread occurrence of allostery has been recently exploited for the development and design of allosteric drugs that bind to either physiological or non-physiological allosteric sites leading to gain of function or loss of function. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Protein Dynamics: Experimental and Computational Approaches. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. Source

Spoto G.,University of Catania | Spoto G.,Italian National Institute of Biosystems and Biostructures | Minunni M.,University of Florence
Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters

This Perspective discusses recent advances in the field of surface plasmon resonance imaging (SPRi) for the label-free, multiplex, and sensitive study of biomolecular systems. Large efforts have been made during the past decade with the aim of developing even more sensitive and specific SPRi-based platforms. Metal nanostructures have been used to enhance SPRi sensitivity and to build a specific SPR-active surface, while special effects such as long-range SPR have been investigated to develop more effective SPRi platforms. Here, we review some of the significant work performed with SPRi for the ultrasensitive detection of biomolecular systems and provide a perspective on the challenges that need to be overcome to enable the wide use of SPRi in emerging key areas such as health diagnostics and antidoping controls. © 2012 American Chemical Society. Source

Pasquali M.,Center De Recherche Public Gabriel Lippmann | Migheli Q.,Italian National Institute of Biosystems and Biostructures
International Journal of Food Microbiology

This review summarises the genetic methods used for chemotype determination of the main Fusarium type B-trichothecene producing species. Literature on Fusarium chemotype epidemiology over the last 15 years is reviewed in order to describe temporal and spatial chemotype distribution of these fungi worldwide. Genetic approaches used for chemotype determination are also reviewed and discussed, highlighting successes and potential pitfalls of the technique. Results from both genetic and chemical approaches are summarised to compare reliability, advantages and limitations of the two methods. Potential applications of genetic chemotyping to toxigenic Fusarium species are evaluated in the light of improving food safety of agricultural products. The use of chemotype determination in population studies, toxin prediction as well as for breeding purpose is described. © 2014 . Source

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