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Vitale-03

MOLECULAR RECOGNITION AND STRUCTURE-ACTIVITY RELATIONSHIPS


Activities

Studies on new possible therapies for debilitating genetic disorders: molecular bases of disease through the study of the structure-activity relationships of proteins and bioactive peptides, pharmacological chaperones, endocannabinoids and related mediators. Chemical communication among bacteria and inter-kingdom communications. Development of new instrumental technologies (computational analysis, EPR, HPLC, MMR) for the advanced study of molecular structures and interactions.

 

Expertise

Synthesis of peptides and proteins and their molecular characterization by means of multi-dimensional NMR spectroscopy and ESI-MS and MALDI-TOF techniques. Enzymatic and other in vitro assays, also through the use of radioactive probes. Binding and immunoenzymatic assays. EPR studies of complexes of transition metals. Enantioseparation and other mechanisms for chiral discrimination. Molecular modeling.

 

Coordinator 2017

Paola Peluso

Components

SUPRAMOLECULAR CHEMISTRY


Activities

Design, synthesis and study of the molecular recognition properties of compounds based on calixarene, with the aim of obtaining new molecules potentially useful in biomedicine.

 

Expertise

Design and synthesis of supramolecular receptors and their structural, conformational and morphological characterization; study of the supramolecular properties and their application to biomedicine.

 

Coordinator 2017

Francesca Cunsolo

Components

3D-STRUCTURE AND MOLECULAR MODELING IN DRUG DESIGN


Activities

Screening of molecules on enzyme and receptor targets of therapeutic relevance. Modeling of ligand-protein complexes for SAR studies. Rational design and optimization of bioactive molecules. Design and characterization of the 3D architecture of peptides containing non-proteic amino acids.

 

Expertise

Ab initio calculations, conformational analysis and structure determination by means of NMR and X-ray analysis on crystals of organic molecules, peptides and peptide-mimetics. Homology modeling, molecular docking, and dynamic simulations in solution and membrane. Development of pharmacophore models. FT-IR spectroscopy.

 

Coordinator 2017

Rosa Maria Vitale

Components

BIOLOGICAL AND PHARMACOLOGICAL ACTION IN DRUG DISCOVERY


Activities

Characterization of the anti-tumor action of new compounds or natural products through in vitro assays. Screening of new synthetic and natural compounds as potential pharmacological tools for the manipulation of the tissue levels or actions of endocannabinoids, endovanilloids and other bioactive lipids. Structural and analytical studies of molecules of interest for the pharmaceutical and food industry in complex matrices.

 

Expertise

Cellular and molecular biology of tumors, apoptosis, cell cycle, cell adhesion. Gene expression studies. Techniques of biochemistry and molecular biology and pharmacology for the study of physiological and pathological processes of the cell. Pharmacokinetic studies and phytochemistry. Validation of analytical methods in biological matrices and data elaboration. Hyphenated techniques of chromatography coupled to LC-MS and GC-MS.

 

Coordinator 2017

Marina Pisano

Components

NANOMATERIALS FOR BIOLOGICAL SYSTEMS


Activities

Use of animal and cellular models as biomarkers or biosensors for the study of the effects of nanostructured materials at the bio/non-bio interface. Design, synthesis and characterization of nanoparticles and biodegradable biopolymers for the controlled release and targeting of bioactive molecules in simple and complex biological systems.

 

Expertise

Setting-up and maintenance of primary and immortalized cell cultures. Analysis of in vitro and in vivo cytotoxicity (cell viability, would healing assay, caspaseassays, luciferase assays, FACS scan, etc.). Techniques of chemistry, biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology, pharmacology, immunohistochemistry, patch clamp electrophysiology, optical and electronic microscopy for the study of physiological and pathological processes.

 

Coordinator 2017

Luigia Cristino

Components

Publications of the group components in the years 2016-2017

  1. Maniscalco, M.; Paris, D.; Melck, D. J.; D’Amato, M.; Zedda, A.; Sofia, M.; Stellato, C.; Motta, A. Coexistence of obesity and asthma determines a distinct respiratory metabolic phenotype. J. Allergy Clin. Immunol. 2016, doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2016.08.038.
  2. Tommonaro, G.; García-Font, N.; Vitale, R.M.; Pejin, B.; Iodice, C.; Cañadas, S.; Marco-Contelles, J.; Oset-Gasque, M.J. Avarol derivatives as competitive AChE inhibitors, non hepatotoxic and neuroprotective agents for Alzheimer’s disease. Eur. J. Med. Chem. 2016, 122, 326-338.
  3. Ligresti, A.; De Petrocellis, L.; Di Marzo, V. From Phytocannabinoids to Cannabinoid Receptors and Endocannabinoids: Pleiotropic Physiological and Pathological Roles Through Complex Pharmacology. Physiol. Rev. 2016, 96(4), 1593-1659, doi: 10.1152/physrev.00002.2016.
  4. G. Granata, G. M. L. Consoli,* R. Lo Nigro, G. Malandrino, C. Geraci “Supramolecular Assembly of a Succinyl-Calix[4]arene Derivative in Multilamellar Vesicles” Supramocular. Chemistry 2016, 28, 377-383.
  5. I. Di Bari, R. Picciotto, G. Granata, A. R. Blanco, G. M. L. Consoli,* S. Sortino, “A bactericidal calix[4]arene-based nanoconstruct with amplified NO photorelease” Organic Biomolecular Chemistry, 2016, 14, 8047–8052.
  6. I. Di Bari, A. Fraix, R. Picciotto, A. R. Blanco, S. Petralia, S. Conoci, G. Granata, G. M. L. Consoli, S. Sortino “Supramolecular activation of the photodynamic properties of porphyrinoid photosensitizers by calix[4]arene nanoassemblies” RSC Advances, 2016, 105573-105577.
  7. De Petrocellis L, Arroyo FJ, Orlando P, Schiano Moriello A, Vitale RM, Amodeo P, Sánchez A, Roncero C, Bianchini G, Martín MA, López-Alvarado P, Menéndez JC. Tetrahydroisoquinoline-Derived Urea and 2,5-Diketopiperazine Derivatives as Selective Antagonists of the Transient Receptor Potential Melastatin 8 (TRPM8) Channel Receptor and Antiprostate Cancer Agents. J Med Chem. 2016 Jun 23;59(12):5661-83. doi:10.1021/acs.jmedchem.5b01448.
  8. Pani G., Dessì A., Dallocchio R., Scherm B., Azara E., Delogu G., Migheli Q. Natural phenolic inhibitors of trichothecene biosynthesis by the wheat fungal pathogen Fusarium culmorum: a computational insight into the structure-activity relationships PlosOne Open Access 2016, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0157316
  9. Pisano M, Palomba A, Tanca A, Pagnozzi D, Uzzau S, Addis MF, Dettori MA, Fabbri D, Palmieri G, Rozzo C. Protein expression changes induced in a malignant melanoma cell line by the curcumin analogue compound D6. BMC Cancer (2016) 16:317. DOI 10.1186/s12885-016-2362-6.
  10. Imperatore R, Carotenuto G, Di Grazia MA, Ferrandino I, Palomba L, Mariotti R, Vitale E, De Nicola S, Longo A, Cristino L. Imidazole-stabilized gold nanoparticles induce neuronal apoptosis: an in vitro and in vivo study. J Biomed Mater Res A. 2015 Apr;103(4):1436-46. doi: 10.1002/jbm.a.35289."

Recent publications of interest to the group components

  1. Romero, A.; Cacabelos, R.; Oset-Gasque, M.J.; Samadi, A.; Marco-Contelles, J. Novel tacrine-related drugs as potential candidates for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Bioorganic & Med. Chem. Letters 2013, 23, 1916-1922.
  2. Nature. 2016 Nov 16. doi: 10.1038/nature20613. [Epub ahead of print] High-resolution crystal structure of the human CB1 cannabinoid receptor. Shao Z1, Yin J1, Chapman K1, Grzemska M1, Clark L1, Wang J2, Rosenbaum DM1.

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