Mutagenesis Unit

Genova, Italy

Mutagenesis Unit

Genova, Italy
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Cipolla M.,Mutagenesis Unit | Izzotti A.,Mutagenesis Unit | Izzotti A.,University of Genoa | Ansaldi F.,University of Genoa | And 4 more authors.
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health | Year: 2017

The impact of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) on indoor air quality and on human health is widely recognized. However, VOC contamination in hospital indoor air is rarely studied and chemical compounds that singularly do not show high toxicity are not submitted to any regulation. This study aimed to compare VOC contamination in two different anatomical pathology wards in the same hospital. Hydrocarbons, alcohols, and terpenes were sampled by passive diffusive samplers. Analytical tests were performed by thermal desorption coupled with gas chromatography and mass spectrometry detector. Results highlighted a different VOC pollution in the two wards, due to the structural difference of the buildings and different organizational systems. The scarcity of similar data in the literature shows that the presence of VOCs in pathology wards is an underestimated problem. We believe that, because of the adverse effects that VOCs may have on the human health, this topic is worth exploring further. © 2017 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


Izzotti A.,Mutagenesis Unit | Izzotti A.,University of Genoa | La Maestra S.,University of Genoa | Micale R.T.,University of Genoa | And 2 more authors.
Mutation Research - Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis | Year: 2015

Oxidative stress plays an important role in glaucoma. Some preservatives of anti-glaucoma drugs, commonly used in glaucoma therapy, can prevent or induce oxidative stress in the trabecular meshwork. The aim of this study is to evaluate cellular and molecular damage induced in trabecular meshwork by preservatives contained in anti-glaucoma drugs. Cell viability (MTT test), DNA fragmentation (Comet test), oxidative DNA damage (8-oxo-dG), and gene expression (cDNA microarray) have been evaluated in trabecular meshwork specimens and in human trabecular meshwork cells treated with benzalkonium chloride, polyQuad, purite, and sofzia-like mixture. Moreover, antimicrobial effectiveness and safety of preservative contents in drugs was tested. In ex vivo experiments, benzalkonium chloride and polyQuad induced high level of DNA damage in trabecular meshwork specimens, while the effect of purite and sofzia were more attenuated. The level of DNA fragmentation induced by benzalkonium chloride was 2.4-fold higher in subjects older than 50 years than in younger subjects. Benzalkonium chloride, and polyQuad significantly increased oxidative DNA damage as compared to sham-treated specimens. Gene expression was altered by benzalkonium chloride, polyQuad, and purite but not by sofzia. In in vitro experiments, benzalkonium chloride and polyQuad dramatically decreased trabecular meshwork cell viability, increased DNA fragmentation, and altered gene expression. A lesser effect was also exerted by purite and sofzia. Genes targeted by these alterations included Fas and effector caspase-3. The efficacy of the preservatives in inhibiting bacterial growth increased the adverse effects in trabecular meshwork in terms of DNA damage and alteration of gene expression. Presented data indicates the delicate balance between efficacy and safety of drug preservatives as not yet optimized. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.


Andreotti V.,University of Genoa | Bisio A.,University of Trento | Bressac-de Paillerets B.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Harland M.,University of Leeds | And 14 more authors.
Pigment Cell and Melanoma Research | Year: 2016

Many variants of uncertain functional significance in cancer susceptibility genes lie in regulatory regions, and clarifying their association with disease risk poses significant challenges. We studied 17 germline variants (nine of which were novel) in the CDKN2A 5'UTR with independent approaches, which included mono and bicistronic reporter assays, Western blot of endogenous protein, and allelic representation after polysomal profiling to investigate their impact on CDKN2A mRNA translation regulation. Two of the novel variants (c.-27del23, c.-93-91delAGG) were classified as causal mutations (score ≥3), along with the c.-21C>T, c.-34G>T, and c.-56G>T, which had already been studied by a subset of assays. The novel c.-42T>A as well as the previously described c.-67G>C were classified as potential mutations (score 1 or 2). The remaining variants (c.-14C>T, c.-20A>G, c.-25C>T+c.-180G>A, c.-30G>A, c.-40C>T, c.-45G>A, c.-59C>G, c.-87T>A, c.-252A>T) were classified as neutral (score 0). In conclusion, we found evidence that nearly half of the variants found in this region had a negative impact on CDKN2A mRNA translation, supporting the hypothesis that 5'UTR can act as a cellular Internal Ribosome Entry Site (IRES) to modulate p16INK4a translation. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S.


PubMed | University of Trento, University of Genoa, Medical Oncology Unit, University of California at Irvine and 4 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Pigment cell & melanoma research | Year: 2016

Many variants of uncertain functional significance in cancer susceptibility genes lie in regulatory regions, and clarifying their association with disease risk poses significant challenges. We studied 17 germline variants (nine of which were novel) in the CDKN2A 5UTR with independent approaches, which included mono and bicistronic reporter assays, Western blot of endogenous protein, and allelic representation after polysomal profiling to investigate their impact on CDKN2A mRNA translation regulation. Two of the novel variants (c.-27del23, c.-93-91delAGG) were classified as causal mutations (score 3), along with the c.-21C>T, c.-34G>T, and c.-56G>T, which had already been studied by a subset of assays. The novel c.-42T>A as well as the previously described c.-67G>C were classified as potential mutations (score 1 or 2). The remaining variants (c.-14C>T, c.-20A>G, c.-25C>T+c.-180G>A, c.-30G>A, c.-40C>T, c.-45G>A, c.-59C>G, c.-87T>A, c.-252A>T) were classified as neutral (score 0). In conclusion, we found evidence that nearly half of the variants found in this region had a negative impact on CDKN2A mRNA translation, supporting the hypothesis that 5UTR can act as a cellular Internal Ribosome Entry Site (IRES) to modulate p16(INK) (4a) translation.


Sossai D.,Prevention and Protection Unit | Di Guardo M.,Prevention and Protection Unit | Foscoli R.,Prevention and Protection Unit | Pezzi R.,Biostatistics and Clinical Trials Unit | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Preventive Medicine and Hygiene | Year: 2016

Healthcare workers who use or may be exposed to needles are at risk of needlestick injuries. A which can lead to serious infections by bloodborne pathogens. These injuries can be avoided by eliminating the unnecessary use of needles and using safety devices. The present study was aimed at evaluating the impact of a safety-engineered device, with passive fully automatic needlestick protection, on the rate of needlestick injuries among healthcare workers. The setting of the study was a network of five public healthcare institutions situated in a Northern Italian Region. Data on the type of device, the number of employees and the number of catheter devices used per year were collected through regular meetings with healthcare workers over a period of five years. The most notable result of this study was the huge risk reduction associated with safety devices. Indeed, the risk of needlestick injuries due to conventional devices was found to be 25-fold higher than that observed for safety devices. However, it is noteworthy that a considerable part of this excess can be explained by the different background number of devices used. Moreover, descriptive analysis suggested that individuals with a poor/moderate training level had a lower risk than those with good/high training, though the difference was not statistically significant. In conclusion, there is convincing evidence of a causal connection between the introduction of safety devices and the reduction in needlestick injuries. This consideration should prompt the introduction of safety devices into daily clinical practice.


PubMed | Mutagenesis Unit
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Current drug targets | Year: 2016

Genotoxic anticancer drugs explicate their effects damaging DNA, thus triggering a coordinated signal-transduction network called DNA Damage Response (DDR). Ataxia Telangiectasia Mutated (ATM) protein plays a central role in this response: activated by DNA damage, ATM phosphorylates itself and downstream effectors that arrest cell cycle allowing for DNA repair or, should DNA damage be too severe and not retrievable, inducing apoptosis. ATM is a worth-investigating target for tumor radio- and chemosensitization. During last years, pharmaceutical industries and research laboratories have developed a series of small molecules, capable to inhibit ATM with increasing specificity. Several preclinical studies have demonstrated that these inhibitors alone or in association with other treatments may improve therapeutic outcomes. In this review we discuss ATM inhibitors so far developed, focussing on recent acquisitions on their potential antineoplastic usefulness.


PubMed | Mutagenesis Unit, Prevention and Protection Unit, Occupational Needlestick Injuries Study Group and Biostatistics and Clinical Trials Unit
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of preventive medicine and hygiene | Year: 2016

Healthcare workers who use or may be exposed to needles are at risk of needlestick injuries, which can lead to serious infections by bloodborne pathogens. These injuries can be avoided by eliminating the unnecessary use of needles and using safety devices. The present study was aimed at evaluating the impact of a safety-engineered device, with passive fully automatic needlestick protection, on the rate of needlestick injuries among healthcare workers. The setting of the study was a network of five public healthcare institutions situated in a Northern Italian Region. Data on the type of device, the number of employees and the number of catheter devices used per year were collected through regular meetings with healthcare workers over a period of five years. The most notable result of this study was the huge risk reduction associated with safety devices. Indeed, the risk of needlestick injuries due to conventional devices was found to be 25-fold higher than that observed for safety devices. However, it is noteworthy that a considerable part of this excess can be explained by the different background number of devices used. Moreover, descriptive analysis suggested that individuals with a poor/moderate training level had a lower risk than those with good/high training, though the difference was not statistically significant. In conclusion, there is convincing evidence of a causal connection between the introduction of safety devices and the reduction in needlestick injuries. This consideration should prompt the introduction of safety devices into daily clinical practice.

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