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Padua, Italy

The University of Padua is a premier Italian university located in the city of Padua, Italy. The University of Padua was founded in 1222 as a school of law and was one of the most prominent universities in early modern Europe. It is among the earliest universities of the world and the second oldest in Italy. The University of Padua is one of Italy’s leading universities and ranks in the first position in all the recent ranking of Italian large universities. In 2010 the university had approximately 65,000 students and in 2009 was ranked "best university" among Italian institutions of higher education with more than 40,000 students. Wikipedia.

Urciuolo A.,University of Padua
Nature communications | Year: 2013

Adult muscle stem cells, or satellite cells have essential roles in homeostasis and regeneration of skeletal muscles. Satellite cells are located within a niche that includes myofibers and extracellular matrix. The function of specific extracellular matrix molecules in regulating SCs is poorly understood. Here, we show that the extracellular matrix protein collagen VI is a key component of the satellite cell niche. Lack of collagen VI in Col6a1(-/-) mice causes impaired muscle regeneration and reduced satellite cell self-renewal capability after injury. Collagen VI null muscles display significant decrease of stiffness, which is able to compromise the in vitro and in vivo activity of wild-type satellite cells. When collagen VI is reinstated in vivo by grafting wild-type fibroblasts, the biomechanical properties of Col6a1(-/-) muscles are ameliorated and satellite cell defects rescued. Our findings establish a critical role for an extracellular matrix molecule in satellite cell self-renewal and open new venues for therapies of collagen VI-related muscle diseases.

Loregian A.,University of Padua
Cellular and molecular life sciences : CMLS | Year: 2014

Influenza viruses are major human pathogens responsible for respiratory diseases affecting millions of people worldwide and characterized by high morbidity and significant mortality. Influenza infections can be controlled by vaccination and antiviral drugs. However, vaccines need annual updating and give limited protection. Only two classes of drugs are currently approved for the treatment of influenza: M2 ion channel blockers and neuraminidase inhibitors. However, they are often associated with limited efficacy and adverse side effects. In addition, the currently available drugs suffer from rapid and extensive emergence of drug resistance. All this highlights the urgent need for developing new antiviral strategies with novel mechanisms of action and with reduced drug resistance potential. Several new classes of antiviral agents targeting viral replication mechanisms or cellular proteins/processes are under development. This review gives an overview of novel strategies targeting the virus and/or the host cell for counteracting influenza virus infection.

In the last decade, a range of new remote-sensing techniques has led to a dramatic increase in terrain information, providing new opportunities for a better understanding of Earth surface processes based on geomorphic signatures. Technologies such as airborne and terrestrial lidar (Light Detection and Ranging) to obtain high-resolution topography have opened avenues for the analysis of landslides, hillslope and channellization processes, river morphology, active tectonics, volcanic landforms and anthropogenic signatures on topography. This review provides an overview of the recent flourishing literature on high-resolution topographic analyses, underlining their opportunities and critical issues such as their limitations. The goal is to provide answers to questions such as what kind of processes can be analyzed through high-resolution topographic data and how to do it. The review focuses on two different environments: natural and engineered landscapes. In both contexts, high-resolution topography offers opportunities to better understand geomorphic processes from topographic signatures. Particular attention is given to engineered landscapes in which the direct anthropic alteration of processes is significant. The last part of the review discusses future challenges. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

Sales G.,University of Padua
Nucleic acids research | Year: 2013

Graphite web is a novel web tool for pathway analyses and network visualization for gene expression data of both microarray and RNA-seq experiments. Several pathway analyses have been proposed either in the univariate or in the global and multivariate context to tackle the complexity and the interpretation of expression results. These methods can be further divided into 'topological' and 'non-topological' methods according to their ability to gain power from pathway topology. Biological pathways are, in fact, not only gene lists but can be represented through a network where genes and connections are, respectively, nodes and edges. To this day, the most used approaches are non-topological and univariate although they miss the relationship among genes. On the contrary, topological and multivariate approaches are more powerful, but difficult to be used by researchers without bioinformatic skills. Here we present Graphite web, the first public web server for pathway analysis on gene expression data that combines topological and multivariate pathway analyses with an efficient system of interactive network visualizations for easy results interpretation. Specifically, Graphite web implements five different gene set analyses on three model organisms and two pathway databases. Graphite Web is freely available at http://graphiteweb.bio.unipd.it/.

Collini E.,University of Padua
Chemical Society Reviews | Year: 2013

One of the most surprising and significant advances in the study of the photosynthetic light-harvesting process is the discovery that the electronic energy transfer might involve long-lived electronic coherences, under physiologically relevant conditions. This means that the transfer of energy among different chromophores does not follow the expected classical incoherent hopping mechanism, but that quantum-mechanical laws can steer the migration of energy. The implications of such a quantum transport regime, although currently under debate, might have a tremendous impact on our way of thinking about natural and artificial light-harvesting. Central to these discoveries has been the development of new ultrafast spectroscopic techniques, in particular two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy, which is now the primary tool to obtain clear and definitive experimental proof of such effects. This review aims to provide an overview of the experimental techniques developed with the purpose of attaining a more detailed picture of the coherent and incoherent quantum dynamics relevant to energy transfer processes, not limited to the two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy. With the idea of summarizing the experimental and theoretical basic notions necessary to introduce the field, the connection between experimental observables and coherence dynamics will be analysed in detail for each technique, highlighting how electronic coherences could be manifested in different experimental signatures. Similarities and differences among coherent signals as well as advantages and disadvantages of each approach will be critically discussed. Current opinions and debated issues will be emphasised and some possible future directions to address still open questions will be suggested. © 2013 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

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