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Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are potent inducers of oxidative damage and have been implicated in the regulation of specific cellular functions, including apoptosis. Mitochondrial ROS increase markedly after proapoptotic signals, though the biological significance and the underlying molecular mechanisms remain undetermined. P66Shc is a genetic determinant(More)
In the past few years, intracellular organelles, such as the endoplasmic reticulum, the nucleus and the mitochondria, have emerged as key determinants in the generation and transduction of Ca2+ signals of high spatio-temporal complexity. Little is known about the Golgi apparatus, despite the fact that Ca2+ within its lumen controls essential processes, such(More)
The mechanism of action of the oncogene bcl-2, a key regulator of the apoptotic process, is still debated. We have employed organelle-targeted chimeras of the Ca(2+)-sensitive photoprotein, aequorin, to investigate in detail the effect of Bcl-2 overexpression on intracellular Ca(2+) homeostasis. In the ER and the Golgi apparatus, Bcl-2 overexpression(More)
The CAG/polyglutamine (polyGln)-related diseases include nine different members that together form the most common class of inherited neurodegenerative disorders; neurodegeneration is linked to the same type of mutation, found in unrelated genes, consisting of an abnormal expansion of a polyGln tract normally present in the wild-type proteins. Nuclear,(More)
Decremental loss of PTEN results in cancer susceptibility and tumor progression. PTEN elevation might therefore be an attractive option for cancer prevention and therapy. We have generated several transgenic mouse lines with PTEN expression elevated to varying levels by taking advantage of bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC)-mediated transgenesis. The(More)
The 66-kilodalton isoform of the growth factor adapter Shc (p66Shc) translates oxidative damage into cell death by acting as reactive oxygen species (ROS) producer within mitochondria. However, the signaling link between cellular stress and mitochondrial proapoptotic activity of p66Shc was not known. We demonstrate that protein kinase C beta, activated by(More)
Calcium (Ca2+) homeostasis is fundamental for cell metabolism, proliferation, differentiation, and cell death. Elevation in intracellular Ca2+ concentration is dependent either on Ca2+ influx from the extracellular space through the plasma membrane, or on Ca2+ release from intracellular Ca2+ stores, such as the endoplasmic/sarcoplasmic reticulum (ER/SR).(More)
Hyperglycemia determines the vascular complications of diabetes through different mechanisms: one of these is excessive activation of the isoform beta2 of protein kinase C (PKC-beta2). Metformin, a widely used antidiabetic agent, is associated with decreased cardiovascular mortality in obese type 2 diabetic patients. Therefore, we assessed the role of(More)
Recently, we have described a simple protocol to obtain an enriched culture of adult stem cells organized in neurospheres from two post-natal tissues: skin and adipose tissue. Due to their possible application in neuronal tissue regeneration, here we tested two kinds of scaffold well known in tissue engineering application: hyaluronan based membranes and(More)
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are highly reactive molecules, mainly generated inside mitochondria that can oxidize DNA, proteins, and lipids. At physiological levels, ROS function as "redox messengers" in intracellular signalling and regulation, whereas excess ROS induce cell death by promoting the intrinsic apoptotic pathway. Recent work has pointed to a(More)