Diego Franco

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BACKGROUND Pitx2 is a homeobox transcription factor that plays a pivotal role in early left/right determination during embryonic development. Pitx2 loss-of-function mouse mutants display early embryonic lethality with severe cardiac malformations, demonstrating the importance of Pitx2 during cardiogenesis. Recently, independent genome-wide association(More)
AIMS non-coding RNA has been recently demonstrated to be a novel mechanism for modulation of gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. The importance of microRNAs in the cardiovascular system is now apparent. Mutations of distinct microRNAs have provided evidence for fundamental roles of microRNAs during cardiovascular development. However, there(More)
Recent genome-wide association studies have uncovered genomic loci that underlie an increased risk for atrial fibrillation, the major cardiac arrhythmia in humans. The most significant locus is located in a gene desert at 4q25, approximately 170 kilobases upstream of PITX2, which codes for a transcription factor involved in embryonic left-right asymmetry(More)
RATIONALE The ventricular conduction system controls the propagation of electric activity through the heart to coordinate cardiac contraction. This system is composed of specialized cardiomyocytes organized in defined structures including central components and a peripheral Purkinje fiber network. How the mammalian ventricular conduction system is(More)
The CXCL12gamma chemokine arises by alternative splicing from Cxcl12, an essential gene during development. This protein binds CXCR4 and displays an exceptional degree of conservation (99%) in mammals. CXCL12gamma is formed by a protein core shared by all CXCL12 isoforms, extended by a highly cationic carboxy-terminal (C-ter) domain that encompass four(More)
Pitx2 is a homeobox transcription factor involved in left-right signaling during embryogenesis. Disruption of left-right signaling in mice within its core nodal/lefty cascade, results in impaired expression of the last effector of the left-right cascade, Pitx2, leading in many cases to absence or bilateral expression of Pitx2 in lateral plate mesoderm(More)
OBJECTIVES Antibiograms are often taken into account to define a rational selection of an empirical antimicrobial therapy for treating patients with hospital-acquired infections. In this study, we performed a paired comparison between the antibiogram constructed with laboratory-based data and that formed with data subjected to prior clinical validation. (More)
BACKGROUND Pitx2 (paired-like homeodomain 2 transcription factor) is crucial for heart development, but its role in heart failure (HF) remains uncertain. The present study lays the groundwork implicating Pitx2 signalling in different modalities of HF. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS A variety of molecular, cell-based, biochemical, and immunochemical assays(More)
MicroRNAs are noncoding RNAs of approximately 22-24 nucleotides which are capable of interacting with the 3' untranslated region of coding RNAs (mRNAs), leading to mRNA degradation and/or protein translation blockage. In recent years, differential microRNA expression in distinct cardiac development and disease contexts has been widely reported, yet the role(More)
OBJECTIVES Here we address the capacity of bone marrow-derived cells (BMDCs) to trans-differentiate into mature myocytes under the physiological stimulus of exercise training. METHODS For this purpose, we have transplanted bone marrow from mice ubiquitously expressing enhanced green fluorescence protein (eGFP) into host mice that have been subjected to a(More)