Maria Giulia Bacalini

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Down Syndrome (DS) entails an increased risk of many chronic diseases that are typically associated with older age. The clinical manifestations of accelerated aging suggest that trisomy 21 increases the biological age of tissues, but molecular evidence for this hypothesis has been sparse. Here, we utilize a quantitative molecular marker of aging (known as(More)
The rapid technological advancements achieved in the last years have boosted the progressive identification of age-associated epigenetic changes. These studies not only contribute to shed light on the molecular basis of ageing and age-related diseases but, given the plasticity of epigenetic modifications, also provide the basis for anti-ageing interventions(More)
BACKGROUND Aberrant hypermethylation of CpG islands in housekeeping gene promoters and widespread genome hypomethylation are typical events occurring in cancer cells. The molecular mechanisms behind these cancer-related changes in DNA methylation patterns are not well understood. Two questions are particularly important: (i) how are CpG islands protected(More)
Poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation regulates chromatin structure and transcription driving epigenetic events. In particular, Parp1 is able to directly influence DNA methylation patterns controlling transcription and activity of Dnmt1. Here, we show that ADP-ribose polymer levels and Parp1 expression are noticeably high in mouse primordial germ cells (PGCs) when the(More)
Little is known about the impact of space (geography/ancestry) and time (age of the individuals) on DNA methylation variability in humans. We investigated DNA methylation of the imprinted IGF2/H19 locus in: i) a cohort of individuals homogeneous for age and gender (males with restricted age range: 30-50 years) belonging to four Italian districts(More)
TET enzymes are the epigenetic factors involved in the formation of the sixth DNA base 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, whose deregulation has been associated with tumorigenesis. In particular, TET1 acts as tumor suppressor preventing cell proliferation and tumor metastasis and it has frequently been found down-regulated in cancer. Thus, considering the importance(More)
Down Syndrome (DS) is characterized by a wide spectrum of clinical signs, which include segmental premature aging of central nervous and immune systems. Although it is well established that the causative defect of DS is the trisomy of chromosome 21, the molecular bases of its phenotype are still largely unknown. We used the Infinium HumanMethylation450(More)
Given the dramatic increase in ageing populations, it is of great importance to understand the genetic and molecular determinants of healthy ageing and longevity. Semi-supercentenarians (subjects who reached an age of 105-109 years) arguably represent the gold standard of successful human ageing because they managed to avoid or postpone the onset of major(More)
There is a body of evidence that shows a link between tumorigenesis and ribosome biogenesis. The precursor of mature 18S, 28S and 5.8S ribosomal RNAs is transcribed from the ribosomal DNA gene (rDNA), which exists as 300–400 copies in the human diploid genome. Approximately one half of these copies are epigenetically silenced, but the exact role of(More)
Genetic association studies of age-related, chronic human diseases often suffer from a lack of power to detect modest effects. Here we propose an alternative approach of including healthy centenarians as a more homogeneous and extreme control group. As a proof of principle we focused on type 2 diabetes (T2D) and assessed /genotypic associations of 31 SNPs(More)