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We analyzed the role of six common polymorphisms in folate metabolizing genes as possible risk factors for having a child with Down syndrome (DS) in 94 Italian mothers of a DS child (MDS) and 113 matched control mothers, both aged less than 35 years at conception. Investigated polymorphisms include methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) 677C>T and(More)
We recently reported isolation of viable rat amniotic fluid-derived stem (AFS) cells [1]. Here, we tested the therapeutic benefits of AFS cells in a rodent model of ischemic stroke. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats received a 60-minute middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAo). Thirty-five days later, animals exhibiting significant motor deficits received(More)
Multiplex Ligation-dependent Probe Amplification (MLPA) assay is a recently developed technique able to evidence variations in the copy number of several human genes. Due to this ability, MLPA can be used in the molecular diagnosis of several genetic diseases whose pathogenesis is related to the presence of deletions or duplications of specific genes.(More)
The C677T polymorphism of the MTHFR gene has been associated to maternal risk of Down syndrome, due to the detection of an higher prevalence of the T allele among mothers of children with trisomy 21, compared to control mothers. In order to confirm this association, we studied the presence of the C677T in 64 mothers of Down syndrome children and 112(More)
Stem cells isolated from amniotic fluid are known to be able to differentiate into different cells types, thus being considered as a powerful tool for cellular therapy of different human diseases. In the last 4 years, amniotic fluid-derived stem (AFS) cells have been shown to express embryonic and adult stem cell markers. These cells can be considered an(More)
Gene therapy has been proposed as a definitive cure of beta-thalassemia. We applied a gene targeting approach, based on the introduction of small DNA fragments (SDF) into erythroid progenitor cells, to specifically modify the beta-globin gene sequence at codon 39. The strategy was first tested in normal individuals by delivering mutant SDF that were able to(More)
The correlation between epigenetics and human reproduction represents a very interesting field of study, mainly due to the possible transgenerational effects related to epigenetic modifications of male and female gametes. In the present review, we focused our attention to the role played by epigenetics on male reproduction, evidencing at least four(More)
The use of titanium plates and screws for osteosynthesis is considered to be an effective treatment for different kinds of fractures in orthopedic surgery. The aim of the present study is to test the ability of titanium screws to promote the growth of osteoblasts obtained from human amniotic fluid stem cells (AFS). Osteoblastic differentiation was assessed(More)
Hematopoiesis in the bone marrow (BM) is maintained by specific interactions between both hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic stromal cells, which are mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) capable of giving rise to several cell types. The human periodontal ligament (PDL), a tissue of ectomesenchymal origin, has been shown to also be a source of MSCs. We have(More)
BACKGROUND Stem cells isolated from amniotic fluid are known to be able to differentiate into different cells types, being thus considered as a potential tool for cellular therapy of different human diseases. In the present study, we report a novel single step protocol for the osteoblastic differentiation of human amniotic fluid cells. RESULTS The(More)