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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)
BACKGROUND About 10% of cases of male infertility are due to the presence of microdeletions within the long arm of the Y chromosome (Yq). Despite the large literature covering this critical issue, very little is known about the pathogenic mechanism leading to spermatogenesis disruption in patients carrying these microdeletions. In order to identify the(More)
We performed a large case–control study and a meta-analysis of the literature to address the role of the methionine synthase reductase (MTRR) c.66A>G polymorphism as a maternal risk factor for the birth of a child with Down Syndrome (DS) among Caucasian women. A total of 253 mothers of a DS child (MDS) and 298 control mothers of Italian origin were included(More)
Human amniotic fluid mesenchymal stem cells (huAFMSCs) are emerging as a promising therapeutic option in regenerative medicine. Here, we characterized huAFMSC phenotype and multipotentiality. When cultured in osteogenic medium, huAFMSC displayed a significant increase in: Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) activity and mRNA expression, Alizarin Red S staining and(More)
Methionine synthase (MTR) is required for the conversion of homocysteine (hcy) to methionine in the one-carbon metabolic pathway. Previous studies investigating a common MTR 2756A>G polymorphism as a maternal risk factor for the birth of a child with Down syndrome (DS) are conflicting and limited by small case–control cohorts, and its contribution to(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)
Accumulating preclinical evidence suggests the use of amnion as a source of stem cells for investigations of basic science concepts related to developmental cell biology, but also for stem cells' therapeutic applications in treating human disorders. We previously reported isolation of viable rat amniotic fluid-derived stem (AFS) cells. Subsequently, we(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)