Daniela Vitucci

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In Parkinson's disease (PD) progressive alteration of striatal N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) signaling has emerged as a considerable factor for the onset of the adverse motor effects of long-term levodopa (l-DOPA) treatment. In this regard, the NMDAR channel blocker amantadine is so far the only drug available for clinical use that attenuates(More)
The potential implication of a decrease in the function of N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia has long been hypothesised. Accordingly, compounds that inhibit the glycine-1 transporter or target the glycine-binding site of NMDARs, including the co-agonists D-serine and glycine, have shown promise in treating the(More)
D-Aspartate (D-Asp) is a free D-amino acid found in the mammalian brain with a temporal-dependent concentration based on the postnatal expression of its metabolizing enzyme D-aspartate oxidase (DDO). D-Asp acts as an agonist on NMDA receptors (NMDARs). Accordingly, high levels of D-Asp in knockout mice for Ddo gene (Ddo (-/-)) or in mice treated with D-Asp(More)
Increasing evidence points to a role for dysfunctional glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) neurotransmission in schizophrenia. D-aspartate is an atypical amino acid that activates NMDARs through binding to the glutamate site on GluN2 subunits. D-aspartate is present in high amounts in the embryonic brain of mammals and rapidly decreases after(More)
D-aspartate (D-Asp) is an atypical amino acid, which is especially abundant in the developing mammalian brain, and can bind to and activate N-methyl-D-Aspartate receptors (NMDARs). In line with its pharmacological features, we find that mice chronically treated with D-Asp show enhanced NMDAR-mediated miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents and basal(More)
Nowadays it is widely recognized that D-amino acids are present in bacteria as well as in eukaryotes, including mammals. In particular, free D-serine and D-aspartate are found in the brain of mammals. Notably, D-aspartate occurs at substantial levels in the embryo brain to then consistently decrease at post-natal phases. Temporal regulation of D-aspartate(More)
Mechanisms of gender-specific synaptic plasticity in the striatum, a brain region that controls motor, cognitive and psychiatric functions, remain unclear. Here we report that Rhes, a GTPase enriched in medium spiny neurons (MSNs) of striatum, alters the striatal cAMP/PKA signaling cascade in a gender-specific manner. While Rhes knockout (KO) male mice,(More)
Ras homolog enriched in striatum (Rhes) is highly expressed in striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs) of rodents. In the present study, we characterized the expression of Rhes mRNA across species, as well as its functional role in other striatal neuron subtypes. Double in situ hybridization analysis showed that Rhes transcript is selectively localized in(More)
We investigated whether lifelong football training affects the expression of healthy longevity-related muscle molecular markers. Biopsies were collected from the vastus lateralis muscle of 10 lifelong football-trained men (68.2 ± 3.0 years) and of 10 active untrained healthy men (66.7 ± 1.3 years). Gene and protein expression was measured by RTqPCR on RNA(More)
Rasd2 is a thyroid hormone target gene, which encodes for a GTP-binding protein enriched in the striatum where, among other functions, it modulates dopaminergic neurotransmission. Here we report that human RASD2 mRNA is abundant in putamen, but it also occurs in the cerebral cortex, with a distinctive expression pattern that differs from that present in(More)
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