University of Roma "La Sapienza"
Department of Clinical and Molecular Medicine
Teaching and research activities in the field of diabetes, metabolic disorders, obesity, ageing, and their associated complications, including cancer.
Overall objective: to study of the molecular mechanisms involved in metabolic dysfunctions, alterations in nutritional status, aging and their complications. In particular, the purpose is to provide mechanistic insight into the molecular events involved in the pathogenesis of vascular and metabolic complications of diabetes mellitus and the metabolic syndrome (renal disease, atherosclerosis, NASH), as well as in normal aging process and in pancreatic cancer, in order to identify potential molecular target(s) for novel preventive and therapeutic strategies for these conditions. Specific aims: to investigate the role of the following mechanisms triggering insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes and tissue damage through activation of pro-inflammatory and fibrogenic - redox sensitive - signaling pathways:
1) accumulation of advanced glyco- and lipoxidation end-products (AGEs and ALEs) and signaling through their receptors (RAGE, galectin-3 and other Pattern Recognition Receptors -PRRs- including NOD-like receptors);
2) the purinergic system and the inflammasome;
3) the TIMP3/TACE dyad.
Methods: application of cell and molecular biology, morphometric and image analysis techniques to cell culture systems, experimental animal models and human samples.
Diabetes, Metabolic dysfunctions, Nutritional status alteration, Vascular complications, AGEs/ALEs &
AGE/ALE-Receptors, Inflammation, Oxidative stress, pancreatic cancer, Histology, Image analysis & morphometry