Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology. Coordinator: Spampinato

Studies focused on the discovery and characterization of novel drug targets and drugs involved in the control of inflammatory and nociceptive processes. The research can use the most advanced technologies of cellular and molecular pharmacology and genetically modified mouse models.

Research themes

1. Study of leukocyte and RGD integrins not yet adequately explored in peripheral and central inflammatory processes; pharmacological characterization of new ligands for these integrins and analysis of their contribution to modulation of inflammation and nociception in suitable experimental models.

2. Characterization of new opioid receptor ligands and analysis of the effects elicited by receptor agonists on apoptosis, proliferation and migration of tumor cells.

3. Role of the transcription factor REST on cellular apoptosis processes and expression of opioid receptors.

4. Pain Control and Stress: (opioid system, POMC, antisense strategies to control the HPA axis )

5. In vivo and in vitro studies on neurodegenarative pathology

6. Molecular pathway analysis of opioid anlgesics- and innovative ligands-induced effects in the frame of Quantitative Systems Pharmacology platforms.

Lab Members

Santi Mario Spampinato, Full Professore

Andrea Bedini,  AssociateProfessor

Gabriele Campana, Senior Assistant Professor

Monica Baiula, Junior Assistant Professor

Andrea Maurizio, PhD Student

Elisabetta Cuna,  PhD Student

Pubblicazioni significative

  • Bedini A, Baiula M, Vincelli G, Formaggio F, Lombardi S, Caprini M, Spampinato S. Nociceptin/orphanin FQ antagonizes lipopolysaccharide-stimulated proliferation, migration and inflammatory signaling in human glioblastoma U87 cells. Biochem Pharmacol. 2017 Jun 2. pii: S0006-2952(17)30323-4. doi: 10.1016/j.bcp.2017.05.021.  
  •  Baiula M, Caligiana A, Bedini A, Zhao J, Santino F, Cirillo M, Gentilucci L, Giacomini D, Spampinato S. Leukocyte Integrin Antagonists as a Novel Option to Treat Dry Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Front Pharmacol. 2021 Jan 29;11:617836. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2020.617836.  
  • Bedini A, Di Cesare Mannelli L, Micheli L, Baiula M, Vaca G, De Marco R, Gentilucci L, Ghelardini C, Spampinato S. Functional Selectivity and Antinociceptive Effects of a Novel KOPr Agonist. Front Pharmacol. 2020 Mar 5;11:188. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2020.00188. PMID: 32210803; PMCID: PMC7066533. 
  •  Baiula M, Carbonari G, Dattoli SD, Calienni M, Bedini A, Spampinato S. REST is up-regulated by epidermal growth factor in HeLa cells and inhibits apoptosis by influencing histone H3 acetylation. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2012 Aug;1823(8):1252-63. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamcr.2012.05.026. 
  •  Travaglione S, Ballan G, Fortuna A, Ferri A, Guidotti M, Campana G, Fiorentini C, Loizzo S. CNF1 Enhances Brain Energy Content and Counteracts Spontaneous Epileptiform Phenomena in Aged DBA/2J Mice. PLoS One. 2015 Oct 12;10(10):e0140495. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0140495.