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Molecular oncology and immunity

Tumour cells utilize highly versatile strategies to grow, escape the immune system and invade into surrounding tissues.

At the IBCN-CNR we aim to characterize mechanisms leading to cancer development and progression by the integration of multidisciplinary experimental approaches ranging from gene expression profile-based screening and bioinformatics analysis to phenotypical and biochemical characterization of genetically modified cellular and murine models of human epithelial (prostate, breast, NSCLC, thyroid, melanoma), brain and nervous system tumours. Multiple cancer-associated deregulated processes are investigated, including gene expression (mRNA, lncRNA and miRNA), cell growth, apoptosis, hormone-dependency, differentiation, angiogenesis, cell invasion, DNA damage response, cell-cell signalling and tumour innate immunity.

A better understanding of the mechanisms regulating the activation of selected oncogenes (i.e. EGFR) and tumour suppressors genes (i.e. p53 family members, Tis21/BTG2), signalling pathways (i.e Receptor tyrosin kinases, hypoxia and nuclear lamina proteins) and mediators (i.e. calcium, eNOS) are instrumental to identify mechanisms of resistance to target therapies, valuable targets (i.e anticancer peptides) and biomarkers for unmet research and medical needs.

  • Personnel involved

  • Selected publications

Giovannini D, Gismondi A, Basso A, Canuti L, Braglia R, Canini A, Mariani F, Cappelli G.
Lavandula  angustifolia Mill. essential oil exerts antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effect in macrophage mediated immune response to Staphylococcus aureus.
Immunological Investigations. 2016; 45(1):11-28.
doi: 10.3109/08820139.2015.1085392.

Presutti D, Santini S, Cardinali B, Papoff G, Lalli C, Samperna S,  Fustaino V, Giannini G and Ruberti G.
MET gene amplification and MET receptor activation are not sufficient to predict efficacy of combined MET and EGFR inhibitors in EGFR TKI-resistant NSCLC cells.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(11):e0143333.
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0143333.

Pellegrino M, Mancini F, Lucà R, Coletti A, Giacchè N, Manni I, Arisi I, Florenzano F, Teveroni E, Buttarelli M, Fici L, Brandi R, Bruno T, Fanciulli M, D'Onofrio M, Piaggio G, Pellicciari R, Pontecorvi A, Marine JC, Macchiarulo A, Moretti F.
Targeting the MDM2/MDM4 Interaction Interface as a Promising Approach for p53 Reactivation Therapy.
Cancer Res. 2015; 75(21):4560-72.
doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-15-0439.

Nardella M, Guglielmi L, Musa C, Iannetti I, Maresca G, Amendola D, Porru M, Carico E, Sessa G, Camerlingo R, Dominici C, Megiorni F, Milan M, Bearzi C, Rizzi R, Pirozzi G, Leonetti C, Bucci B, Mercanti D, Felsani A and D’Agnano I.
Down-regulation of the Lamin A/C in neuroblastoma triggers the expansion of tumor initiating cells.
Oncotarget 2015; 6(32):32821-32840.
doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.5104.

Pacioni S, D’Alessandris QG, Giannetti S, Morgante L, De Pascalis I, Coccè V, Pascucci L, Alessandri G, Pessina A, Falchetti ML, Pallini R.
Mesenchymal stromal cells loaded with Paclitaxel induce cytotoxic damage in glioblastoma brain xenografts.
Stem Cell Res. Ther. 2015; 6:194.
doi: 10.1186/s13287-015-0185-z.

Giacobbe A, Compagnone M, Bongiorno-Borbone L, Antonov A, Markert EK, Zhou JH, Annicchiarico-Petruzzelli M, Melino G, Peschiaroli A.
p63 controls cell migration and invasion by transcriptional regulation of MTSS1.
Oncogene. 2015; doi: 10.1038/onc.2015.230.

Nanni S, Aiello A, Re A, Guffanti A, Benvenuti V, Colussi C, Castro-Vega LJ, Felsani A, Londono-Vallejo A, Capogrossi MC, Bacchetti S, Gaetano C, Pontecorvi A and Farsetti A.
Estrogen-Dependent Dynamic Profile of eNOS-DNA Associations in Prostate Cancer.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(5):e62522.
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062522.

Farioli-Vecchioli S, Cinà I, Ceccarelli M, Micheli L, Leonardi L, Ciotti MT, De Bardi M, Di Rocco C, Pallini R, Cavallaro S, Tirone F.
Tis21 knock-out enhances the frequency of medulloblastoma in Patched1 heterozygous mice by inhibiting the Cxcl3-dependent migration of cerebellar neurons.
J Neurosci. 2012; 32(44):15547-15564.
doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0412-12.2012.

Miccadei S, Provenzano C, Mojzisek M, Natali PG, Civitareale D.
Retinoblastome protein acts as Pax 8 transcriptional coattivator.
Oncogene. 2005; 24(47):6993-7001.