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Small conductance, calcium-activated potassium channels (SK channels) are present in most neurons, in denervated muscles and in several non-excitable cell types. In excitable cells SK channels play a fundamental role in the generation of the afterhyperpolarization which follows an action potential, thereby modulating neuronal firing and regulating(More)
Airway secretion is maintained by specialized non-ciliated epithelial cells whose phenotype varies with their topographical location. In addition, specialized epithelial cells located in the airway contain the molecular machinery of chemoreceptive elements. Our aim has been to evaluate whether the secretory cells themselves possess a chemoreceptive(More)
In this study, we investigated whether the potential positive effects of nicotine in Alzheimer's disease (AD) may involve neurotrophic factors, such as nerve growth factor (NGF), closely associated with basal forebrain (BF) cholinergic function and survival. To this aim, we studied the effects of prolonged nicotine treatment on neurotrophin receptors(More)
OBJECTIVE(S) The eventual role of blood pressure on the endothelial progenitor cell (EPC) has rarely been evaluated and data collected so far relate to patients with co-existing coronary heart disease. METHODS We have studied the number and functional activity of EPC as well as the number of EPC endothelial colony-forming units (CFU) in a carefully(More)
Mitochondrial diseases (MD) are heterogeneous disorders because of impairment of respiratory chain function leading to oxidative stress. We hypothesized that in MD the vascular endothelium may be affected by increased oxidative/nitrative stress causing a reduction of nitric oxide availability. We therefore, investigated the pathobiology of vasculature in MD(More)
The scope of this study was to test whether increased levels of the extracellular matrix molecule (ECM) agrin might enhance nicotine effects on those molecular mechanisms that initiate neuroadaptative processes in the hippocampus, a key brain area for learning and memory. We studied the effects of repetitive applications of neuronal agrin to primary(More)
Brain and skull developments are tightly synchronized, allowing the cranial bones to dynamically adapt to the brain shape. At the brain-skull interface, meninges produce the trophic signals necessary for normal corticogenesis and bone development. Meninges harbor different cell populations, including cells forming the endosteum of the cranial vault.(More)
Ketamine is a non-competitive antagonist of the NMDA glutamate receptor with psychotomimetic and reinforcing properties, although recent work has pointed out its antidepressant action following acute exposure. Our aim was to investigate the expression of crucial components of the glutamate synapse following chronic ketamine self-administration (S/A),(More)
Ketamine is a drug of abuse with a unique profile, which besides its inherent mechanism of action as a non-competitive antagonist of the NMDA glutamate receptor, displays both antidepressant and reinforcing properties. The major aim of our study was to find a molecular signature of ketamine that may help in discriminating between its reinforcing and(More)