Biosensors & Bioelectronics

At NANOTEC Institute, several research activities are in progress concerning the optimization of a wide range of biosensors able to respond, alone or integrated in multifunctional sensing platform, to specific needs of several biological applications. On one side, we employ different biorecognition elements (antibodies, aptamers or molecular imprinted polymers) to achieve specificity. On the other, we exploit various transduction methods ranging from optical to electrical and mechanical ones in order to miniaturize the assay, reduce the cost and/or increase the sensitivity. Moreover, our studies investigate also the use of biomaterials for electronics applications. More in detail:

A panel which summarizes the different transduction strategies applied to biorecognition at NANOTEC

Biorecognition elements for sensor specificity

Many biological events are closely associated with the specific binding between biomolecules that complement each other in shape, size, charge and chemical functionality, and self-organize with nanoscale dimension at an interface (i.e., lipid assemblies, proteins, viruses). To attain high specificity and efficiency, biosensors exploit molecular recognition such as DNA base pairing or antigen-antibody reactions but we also employ aptamers and molecular imprinted polymers as emerging molecular probes. However, achieving rapid and efficient specific molecular interaction often depends on immobilization of receptors to solid surfaces with appropriate surface density, preserving the functional conformation and optimizing the presentation of the binding fragments towards the target analyte. Moreover, the ability to bind/release a molecule of interest in response to an external stimulus (i.e., temperature, pH, irradiation), has a practical impact in the field of bioseparations (purification of proteins, enzymes, pharmaceuticals) and drug delivery. In this respect, in situ analytic techniques able to determine the absolute orientation and conformation of bio- and biomimetic molecules at the interfaces are of paramount relevance. Furthermore, dynamically probing the active sites during the binding/releasing event would provide a molecular-level understanding of the receptor-analyte interaction, and eventually shed light on how the performance of biological processes in living organisms depends on the biomolecular interfacial architectures. Sum-frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy (SFG-VS) allows achieving the conformational structure and orientation distribution of biomimetic and bio- molecules at interfaces, in the working environment for chemical and biochemical sensing. As a second-order nonlinear optical processes, SFG-VS has been proven to be a versatile tool for non-invasive probing of any interface accessible by light, with intrinsic surface specificity, chemical selectivity and sub-monolayer sensitivity. Being electric-dipole forbidden in centrosymmetric bulk media but allowed at interfaces where inversion symmetry is naturally broken, SFG is highly interface-specific. SFG is a process in which two input laser beams at VIS and IR frequencies interact in a medium and generate an output beam at frequency ω_SFG=ω_VIS+ω_IR. When ω_VIS (ω_IR) and/or ω_SFG are tuned over resonances, SFG is resonantly enhanced thus yielding surface spectroscopic information. For molecular systems, vibrational spectroscopy is often more selective, since it permits identification of molecular species and provides information about their functional groups. Therefore SFG-VS, where the input beam ω_IR is scanned over vibrational resonances, has been largely exploited as surface-specific analytical probe for molecules at interfaces. SFG-VS is sensitive to the average polar orientation of each moiety and therefore to the overall molecular conformation. As a coherent process, the output beam is highly directional, allowing for in situ non-invasive remote sensing of the interface.

(Left) SFG-VS experiments are carried out at the solid-gas and liquid-gas interfaces, where surface-bound receptors are exposed to different analytes. (Right) Resonant enhancement and polarization dependence allow to deduce quantitatively conformational information on the receptors and assess the orientation of the analytes upon complexation.

Optical read-out: Sum-frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy (SFG-VS) and plasmonics

Optical sensor technology offers significant opportunities in the field of medical research and clinical diagnostics, spanning from colorimetric and fluorescent assays to more advanced approaches particularly suitable for the detection of a few molecules in highly-diluted solutions. At CNR-NANOTEC, several methods are under investigation. For example, a colorimetric “point-of-care” device was optimized exploiting electrochromism for the detection of ions in biological fluids. For few molecules detection, we are then working on label-free plasmonic biosensors based on metallic nanostructures and metamaterials. To detect lower molecular weight (<500 Da) biomolecules in highly-diluted solutions, we are investigating a hyperbolic metamaterial (HMM)-based plasmonic biosensor platform, which can support highly confined bulk plasmon guided modes in a wide wavelength range, from visible to near infrared. Hyperbolic metamaterials are perhaps the most unusual electromagnetic metamaterials, featuring hyperbolic (or indefinite) dispersion because one of their principal components has the opposite sign to the other two. Our HMM sensor device shows many highly sensitive resonant modes with a maximum sensitivity of 30,000 nm/RIU and a maximum figure of merit of 590 at near IR wavelength. In collaboration with CNR-IMM, we have also recently optimized colloidal nano-lithography as a cheap approach to fabricate planar distributions of plasmonic nanostructures with tailored optical functionalities.

Mechanical read-out: QCM and SAW

Another trasduction mechanism under investigation at CNR-NANOTEC is based on a mechanical approach. If opportunely functionalized, a quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) interacts with analytes in solution to estimate the concentration or can be used for cell studies. In our labs, we have employed QCM to study peptide-antibody interactions to allow detection of new biomarkers for early diagnosis of aggressive forms of cancer. Another application was in the field of ophthalmology to search for innovative coatings to improve contact lens performances and produce biofouling surfaces. Recently QCM was used to investigate cancer cell-drug interactions and to probe aptamer-toxin interactions in the perspective of developing biosensors for monitoring food quality. To further improve the sensitivity in mass detection, we are also working on Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) technology and we recently optimized both delay lines and resonators.

Electrical read-out: E.I.S. and MR biosensors

Tailoring low cost, portable, easy handled devices for simple and rapid assays is a major goal for current technology research. In this respect, an electrical read-out can provide advantages. In our labs, we optimized electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) based biosensors consisting of couples of interdigitated electrodes made of gold on a glass substrate integrated with a microfluidic module for the automatic handle and delivery of solutions and samples to the sensing areas of the device. This EIS platform has been used in Lecce for diagnostics, food control, environmental monitoring and cell studies.

Recently, in Bari, a label-free impedance device was also optimized for virus early detection in apparently asimptomatic plants at attomolar concentration in collaboration with the CNR IPSP – Istituto per la Protezione Sostenibile delle Piante, UoS Bari. Specifically, Tomato the mosaic virus (ToMV) and the Turnip yellow mosaic virus (TyMV) were analyzed and the different virus charges have been found to regulate the impedance response and the electrochemical interaction with a textured surface, enabling selectiveness and quantification.

In this frame, properly functionalized nanostructures can act as high sensitive recognition element due to the high surface to volume ratio. As a different strategy, in our labs, in collaboration with Technion Institute in Haifa (Israel), functionalized silicon nanowires arrays (SiNWs) were embedded on interdigitated electrodes (IDEs) for TFT devices responding to low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) concentration produced by human breath when affected by gastric cancer for a novel non invasive cancer diagnostic technique.

At NANOTEC we are also investigating magnetoresistance sensors as transducers since they promise excellent sensitivity in the detection of biomolecules labeled by magnetic particles. A new H2020 project will exploit this technology for achieving early detection of neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer and Parkinson).

(top) T.E.M. images of Tomato Mosaic and Turnip Yellow Mosaic virsuses (center) Schetch of the Droplet-on-high hydropobic support device structure for label free recognition and quantification of viruses via E.I.S. measurements. (bottom). Recent experimental results evidencing the feasibility of virus recognition and quantification (right)

Plasma processing of materials for sensing 

Plasma processing can be used to modify the surface properties of materials for sensing. Plasma assisted functionalization of surfaces can be performed in order to introduce nitrogen and oxygen containing groups other than micro-nanopatterned surfaces and promote further immobilization or analysis of molecules

Bioelectronics

In bio-molecules, like amino-acid derivatives, proteins etc.. the water bounding is of fundamental importance. This feature is generally encountered in living cells, where water binds to the structure and fluctuates from an ordered to a disordered structure. In this respect melanin and melanin-like materials have displayed a peculiar hydration dependent modification of their properties and specifically of the electrical one, leading to consider melanin as an electret able to store water derived charges.

Even if such behavior was a well known feature disclosed in the past, only recently our group was able to demonstrate that it is possible not only to relate the amount of the stored charge to the magnitude of an applied signal (e.g. a continuous voltage) but also that the transmitted information is not erasable and can be stored for a long time. Moreover, depending from the hydration state, the origin of the storage is switching from an electron/hole charge trapping to a polarization effect, the latter regulated by the residual water ions. A recently afforded fundamental issue concerns the kind of physicochemical interactions between water molecules and eumelanin in determining the functionalities, which possibly can hinder the development of rational strategies to fine tune the ionic-electronic conduction mechanisms, a primary goal in the design of bio-electronic devices useful for memory recovering or powering.

As valid alternative to melanins-based biological system, Polydopamine (pDA) constitutes an attractive platform due to the easy deposition by dip-coating, the eumelanin-like properties and the possibility to tune its properties by binding to proper functionalities. As an example, our group thanks to the collaboration with the Prof. M. d’Ischia’s group (Chemistry Dpt at the University of Naples) was able to demonstrate the feasibility of chemical doping and tuning of the electrical transport when pDA is co-polymerized with electron-donating systems. Inspired by the powerful photosensitizing properties of the red hair pigments pheomelanins, a photoresponsive cysteine-containing polydopamine obtained via oxidative copolymerization of dopamine (DA) and 5-S-cysteinyldopamine (CDA) in variable ratios was produced and tested. In particular, the obtained copolymer replicates in a certain extent, the structure of neuromelanin. The use of the p(DA/CDA) copolymer constituted in this case a first example of technological exploitation of photoactive, red hair-inspired biomaterials as soft enhancement layer for a bio-friendly bio- device with a chemically tunable response to visible light. Interestingly, respect to pDA, the p(DA/CDA) copolymers displayed an interesting properties binding water in a fashion similar to those of biological materials and a marked photoimpedance response to light stimuli.

Recent findings on the tunablity of the electrical/optical properties of polydopamine including the doping modification (top) and enhancement of the optical response when passing from the black (eumelanin) to the reddish (pheomelanin) one after the addition of CDA

Facilities & Labs

Characterization Lab @ Lecce
Bio Lab @ Lecce
NanoFab Lab @ Lecce
Micro/nano fabrication @ Rende
Optoelectronic Characterization Labs@ URT Bari
Bio Lab @ URT Bari
Plasma Technologies Lab @ URT Bari
Chemical-Structural Characterization Lab @ URT Bari

People

Valentina_ArimaValentina

Arima

CNR Researcher

Monica_BiancoMonica

Bianco

CNR PostDoc

Elisabetta

Primiceri

CNR PostDoc

Laura_BlasiLaura

Blasi

CNR Researcher

Alessandra_ZizzariAlessandra

Zizzari

Associate PhD Student

Pietro-FaviaPietro

Favia

Associate Professor

Eloisa_SardellaEloisa

Sardella

CNR Researcher

Marianna_AmbricoMarianna

Ambrico

CNR Researcher

PaoloFrancesco_AmbricoPaolo Francesco

Ambrico

CNR Researcher

Pasquale_PagliusiPasquale

Pagliusi

Associate Professor

Giuseppe-StrangiGiuseppe

Strangi

CNR Researcher

Giuseppe_MaruccioGiuseppe

Maruccio

Associate Professor

AnnaGrazia_MonteduroAnna Grazia

Monteduro

Associate PostDoc

Serena_ChiriacòMaria Serena

Chiriacò

CNR PostDoc

Gabriella_CipparroneGabriella

Cipparrone

Associate Professor

scolesGiacinto

Scoles

Emeritus Professor

Publications

  1. M. Bianco, A. Sonato, A. De Girolamo, M. Pascale, F. Romanato, R. Rinaldi, V. Arima An aptamer-based SPR-polarization platform for high sensitive OTA detection Sensors & Actuators: B. Chemical 314-320 (2017) ISSN: 0925-4005; doi: 10.1016/j.snb.2016.10.056
  2. A. Aprile, F. Ciuchi, R. Pinalli, E. Dalcanale, P. Pagliusi, Probing Molecular Recognition at the Solid-Gas Interface by Sum-Frequency Vibrational Spectroscopy, Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, 7, 3022-3026, (2016) ISSN 1948-7185; doi: 10.1021/acs.jpclett.6b01300
  3. A. Aprile, P. Pagliusi, F. Ciuchi, R. Pinalli, E. Dalcanale, Probing cavitand-organosilane hybrid bilayers via sum frequency vibrational spectroscopy, Langmuir 30, 12843 (2014) ISSN: 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/la503150z.
  4. S. R. Cicco, M.Ambrico, P.F.Ambrico, M.Mastropasqua Talamo, A.Cardone,T.Ligonzo, R. DiMundo, C. Giannini, T. Sibillano, G.M. Farinola, P.Manini,A.Napolitano, V. Criscuolo, M. D’Ischia A water-soluble eumelanin polymer with typical polyelectrolyte behaviour by triethyleneglycol N-functionalization, Journal of Material Chemistry, C 3, 2810-2816 (2015) ISSN: 2050-7526; doi: 10.1039/c4tc01997k
  5. M. Ambrico, P.F. Ambrico, A. Cardone, S.R. Cicco, F. Palumbo, T. Ligonzo, R. di Mundo, V. Petta, V. Augelli, P. Favia and G. M. Farinola Melanin-like polymer layered on a nanotextured silicon surface for a hybrid biomimetic interface, Journal of Material Chemistry C, 2,573, (2014) ISSN 2050-7534; doi: 10.1039/c3tc31327a
  6. M. Ambrico, N.F. Della Vecchia, P.F. Ambrico, A. Cardone, S.R.Cicco, T. Ligonzo, R.Avolio and A. Napolitano, A Photoresponsive Red-Hair-Inspired Polydopamine Based Copolymer for Hybrid Photocapacitive Sensors, Advanced Functional Materials, 24,7161-7172, (2014), ISSN: 1616-3028; doi: 10.1002/adfm.201401377
  7. N. F. Della Vecchia, R. Marega, M. Ambrico, M. Iacomino, R. Micillo, A. Napolitano, D. Bonifazi  and M. d’Ischia Tailoring melanins for bioelectronics: polycysteinyldopamine as an ion conducting redox-responsive polydopamine variant for pro-oxidant thin films, Journal of Material Chemistry C, 3,6525-6531,(2015) ISSN 2050-7534; doi: 10.1039/c5tc00672d
  8. M. Ambrico (Lead Guest Editor) Special issue: Melanin, a long lasting history bridging natural pigments and organic bioelectronics, Polymer International, 65,11 (2016) ISSN: 1097-0126; doi: 10.1002/pi.5239
  9. G. Da Ponte, E. Sardella, F. Fanelli, S. Paulussen, P. Favia. Atmospheric pressure plasma deposition of poly lactic acid-like coatings with embedded elastin. Plasma Processes and Polymers 11-4, 342-352 (2014) ISSN: 1612-8850; doi: 10.1002/ppap.201300130
  10. M. Bianco, V. Guarino, G. Maruccio, G. Galli, E. Martinelli, G. Montani, R. Rinaldi and V. Arima Non-Biofouling Fluorinated Block Copolymer Coatings for Contact Lenses Sci. Adv. Mater. 7, 1387-1394 (2015). ISSN: 1947-2935; doi: 10.1166/sam.2015.2056
  11. Z. Ameer, E. Primiceri, F. De Feo, M. S. Chiriacò, A. G. Monteduro, G. Maruccio and R. Rinaldi, DNA sensors with impedimetric and magnetoresistive transduction – A comparison study, Proceedings of 2014 11th International Bhurban Conference on Applied Sciences and Technology, IBCAST 2014 65-68 (2014). ISSN: 2151-1403; doi: 10.1109/IBCAST.2014.6778122
  12. S. Chiriacò, F. de Feo, E. Primiceri, A. G. Monteduro, G. E. de Benedetto, A. Pennetta, R. Rinaldi and G. Maruccio, Portable gliadin-immunochip for contamination control on the food production chain Talanta 142, 57-63 (2015) ISSN: 00399140; doi: 10.1016/j.talanta.2015.04.040
  13. A. Colombelli, M. G. Manera, R. Rella, S. Rizzato, E. Primiceri, A. G. Monteduro and G. Maruccio, Colloidal lithography fabrication of tunable plasmonic nanostructures, IET Conference Publications 2015, Vol. 2015. doi: 10.1049/cp.2015.0148
  14. S. Chiriacò, E. Primiceri, F. De Feo, A. Montanaro, A. G. Monteduro, A. Tinelli, M. Megha, D. Carati and G. Maruccio, Simultaneous detection of multiple lower genital tract pathogens by an impedimetric immunochip, Biosensors and Bioelectronics 79, 9-14 (2016) ISSN: 0956-566; doi: 10.1016/j.bios.2015.11.100
  15. V. De Matteis, A. Cannavale, L. Blasi, A. Quarta, G. Gigli Chromogenic device for cystic fibrosis precocious diagnosis: A “point of care” tool for sweat test Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical 225, 474–480 (2016) ISSN: 09254005; doi: 10.1016/j.snb.2015.11.080
  16. G. Palazzo , D. De Tullio, M. Magliulo , A. Mallardi , F. Intranuovo , M.Y.Mulla , P.Favia, I.V.-Lundin , L. Torsi, Detection Beyond Debye’s Length with an Electrolyte-Gated Organic Field-Effect Transistor, Adv. Mater. 27, 911–916 (2015) ISSN: 0935-9648; doi: 10.1002/adma.201403541
  17. V. Sreekanth, Y. Alapan, M. ElKabbash, U. A. Gurkan, E. Ilker, M. Hinczevski, A. De Luca and G. Strangi, Extreme sensitivity biosensing platform based on hyperbolic metamaterials Nature Materials 15 (6), 621 (2016) ISSN: 1476-1122, DOI: 10.1038/NMAT4609
  18. V. Caligiuri, R. Dhama, K. Valiyaveedu Sreekanth, G. Strangi and A. De Luca Dielectric singularity in HMM: the inversion point of coexisting anisotropies, Scientific Reports (Nature Publishing Group) 6, 20002 (2016) ISSN: 2045-2322; doi: 10.1038/srep20002
  19. V. Sreekanth, K. Hari Krishna, A. De Luca and Giuseppe Strangi Large spontaneous emission rate enhancement in grating coupled hyperbolic metamaterials Scientific Reports (Nature Publishing Group) 4, 6340 (2014) ISSN: 2045-2322; doi: 10.1038/srep06340

Other selected publications:

  1. H. Haick, M.Ambrico, T.Ligonzo and D. Cahen, Controlling Semiconductor/Metal Junction Barriers by Incomplete, Nonideal Molecular Monolayers Journal of the American Chemical Society 128, 6854-6869 (2006) ISSN: 0002-7863; doi: 10.1021/ja058224a
  2. M. Ambrico, P.F.Ambrico, A.Cardone, T.Ligonzo, S.R.Cicco, R.Di Mundo, V. Augelli, G.M. Farinola, Melanin Layer on Silicon: an Attractive Structure for a Possible Exploitation in Bio-Polymer Based Metal-Insulator-Silicon Devices, Advanced Materials, 23,3332-3336,(2011) ISSN: 0935-9648; doi: 10.1002/adma.201101358
  3. M. Ambrico, A.Cardone, P.F,Ambrico, T.Ligonzo, V.Augelli, S.R.Cicco, G.M. Farinola, M.Filannino, G. Perna and V.Capozzi. Hysteresis-type current–voltage characteristics in Au/eumelanin/ITO/glass structure: Towards melanin based memory devices, Organic Electronics 11,1809-1814, 2010 ISSN: 1566-1199; doi: 10.1016/j.orgel.2010.08.001
  4. M. Tulliani, A. Cavalieri, S. Musso, E. Sardellad, F. Geobaldo; Room temperature ammonia sensors based on zinc oxide and functionalizedgraphite and multi-walled carbon nanotubes; Sensors and Actuators B 152 (2011) 144–154 ISSN: 0925-4005; doi: 10.1016/j.snb.2010.11.057
  5. V. Sreekanth, Antonio De Luca & Giuseppe Strangi   Experimental demonstration of surface and bulk plasmon  polaritons  in  hypergratings Scientific Reports (Nature Publishing Group) 3, 03291 (2013) ISSN: 2045-2322; doi: 10.1038/srep03291
  6. M. Bianco, A. Aloisi, V. Arima, M. Capello, S. Ferri-Borgogno, F. Novelli, S. Leporatti and R. Rinaldi Quartz Crystal Microbalance with Dissipation (QCM-D) as tool to exploit antigen-antibody interactions in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma detection Biosensors and Bioelectronics 42, 646–652 (2013) ISSN: 0956-5663; doi: 10.1016/j.bios.2012.10.012
  7. E. Primiceri, M. S. Chiriacò, E. D’Amone, E. Urso, R. E. Ionescu, A. Rizzello, M. Maffia, R. Cingolani, R. Rinaldi and G. Maruccio, Real-time monitoring of copper ions-induced cytotoxicity by EIS cell chips, Biosens. Bioelectron. 25, 2711-2716 (2010) ISSN: 09565663; doi: 10.1016/j.bios.2010.04.032
  8. M. S. Chiriacò, E. Primiceri, E. D’Amone, R. E. Ionescu, R. Rinaldi and G. Maruccio, EIS microfluidic chips for flow immunoassay and ultrasensitive cholera toxin detection, Lab on a Chip 11, 658-663 (2011). ISSN: 1473-0197; doi: 10.1039/c0lc00409j
  9. E. Primiceri, M. S. Chiriacò, F. Dioguardi, A. G. Monteduro, E. D’Amone, R. Rinaldi, G. Giannelli and G. Maruccio, Automatic transwell assay by an EIS cell chip to monitor cell migration, Lab on a Chip 11, 4081-4086 (2011). ISSN: 1473-0197; doi: 10.1039/c1lc20540d
  10. M. S. Chiriacò, E. Primiceri, A. Montanaro, F. de Feo, L. Leone, R. Rinaldi and G. Maruccio, On-chip screening for prostate cancer: an EIS microfluidic platform for contemporary detection of free and total PSA, Analyst 138, 5404-5410 (2013). ISSN: 0003-2654; doi: 10.1039/c3an00911d

Patent

  1. V. Sreekanth, Y. Alapan, M. ElKabbash, U. A. Gurkan, E. Ilker, M. Hinczevski, A. De Luca and G. Strangi, “Extreme sensitivity biosensing platform based on hyperbolic metamaterials” Invention Disclosure and  Patent Pending (USA)

Project

  1. Safemeat: Innovazioni di processo e di prodotto per incrementare i profili di sicurezza e per diversificare la gamma di prodotti (freschi e stagionati) a base di carne suina – MIUR-PON project (2012-2014)
  2. MADIA: Magnetic Diagnostic Assay for neurodegenerative diseases – H2020, ICT-03-2016 “SSI – Smart System Integration” (2017-2020)
  3. Nano-Biotecnologie per Diagnostica e sviluppo di Terapie innovative –  Regional project APQ Ricerca Scientifica—Reti di Laboratori Pubblici di Ricerca” – (2010-2012).

Latest News

Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

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Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

Lecce, Italy, 2017 Wednesday July 19th 

CNR NANOTEC @ Lecce, Aula Seminari – pal. G, Piano Terra

Program - PDF

Zeiss, as microscopy technology leader, provides the unique complete imaging solution ranging from light, confocal, electron, ion and Xray modalities with a complete and straightforward correlative workflow. An overview of different technologies will be presented with a special focus on X-Rray microscopy.

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MCS 2017

International Workshop on Micropropulsion and CubeSats

Bari, Italy, 26 - 27 June 2017

Program - MSC2017

This narrow-field, invited-only meeting is the first attempt to bring together the Materials and Micropropulsion communities with a view to contribute to the development of the Global Materials and Micropropulsion Roadmap, and set such meetings to a regular basis.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Cetraro (CS), 3 -5 maggio 2017

Il programma completo dell'evento - download

La tre giorni dedicata ai risultati di ricerca conseguiti e alle strategie scientifiche da intraprendere nel prossimo futuro.

Biointerfaces

Surfaces covered and functionalized with biomolecules play a key role in nano-biotechnology. At NANOTEC we study the biomolecules at interfaces with high resolution techniques to elucidate the mechanisms of self-assembly and aggregation, investigate the molecular-scale mechanisms of surface force generation and determine the mechanical and viscoelastic properties of biomaterials for their applications in tissue regeneration and biosensing.

Proteins at interfaces

Protein and peptide monolayers/multilayers are created at a liquid/vapour interface by Langmuir techniques. Studies on the aggregation process are performed in situ by the analysis of the compression isotherm curves, obtained under different environmental conditions (T, pH, compression speed), using models derived for classical 3D aggregation, adapted to the 2D world. The structural properties are investigated on mono-layers and multi-layers after the transfer of the film on silicon or glass substrates by Langmuir-Blodgett/Langmuir-Shaefer techniques, by means of scanning probe Microscopy Nanomechanics and Force spectroscopy. Of particular interest are Hydrophobins, small proteins produced by filamentous fungi, as they are biological surfactants whose films and aggregates can be used as models to study the mechanism of protein aggregation, for instancein amyloidosis. Moreover hydrophobins exhibit singular properties that can be exploited for bio-technological application.

Protein aggregation

Protein aggregation is a process triggered by physical and chemical changes in the surrounding molecular environment that lead to several neurodegenerative human disorders known as amyloid diseases, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases and spongiform encephalopathies. On the other hand, protein aggregation can also be utilized for creating nanostructured materials as protein can self-assemble in fibrils and other organized orphologies with defined nanoscale morphologies.

Protein structures can be modelled by regulating a number of experimental conditions that include temperature, pH, protein concentration, presence of other compounds and substrate of deposition. The structures formed can be characterized by a combination of experimental and theoretical methods. In our case, we have studied the self-assembly features of model proteins such as ß-lactoglobulin and human serum albumin. Their aggregation properties have been investigated in the presence of metals such as copper, zinc and iron, as well as in interaction with solid substrates.

Model of protein fibrils, classified according to their and periodicity as 1st, 2nd and 3rd type filaments. AFM images of fibrils obtained after incubation at 80 °C of ß-lactoglobulin, either alone or in the presence of increasing amounts of copper ion
Model of protein fibrils, classified according to their and periodicity as 1st, 2nd and 3rd type filaments. AFM images of fibrils obtained after incubation at 80 °C of ß-lactoglobulin, either alone or in the presence of increasing amounts of copper ion

Molecular-scale mechanisms of surface force generation by proteins and biomimetic polymers

There are many examples of biological surfaces that show outstanding lubrication properties (e.g. removal of surface adsorption/adhesion, low friction coefficient and/or high resistance to wear) while exposed to aqueous fluids, e.g. articular cartilage, cornea, teeth, gastro-intestinal and reproductive tracts. Most synthetic lubricants and surface coatings are oil-based and immiscible with water, and fail to provide an efficient or durable lubrication of wet surfaces, which is particularly inconvenient in bioengineering, e.g. for joint replacements, contact lenses, hearth valves, catheters and medical probes. Likewise, synthetic adhesives generally fail to provide efficient surface adhesion in wet conditions whereas many organisms, particularly sea shells, mussel and algae, are able to firmly attach to underwater surfaces. Our project is aimed at clarifying the molecular-scale mechanisms of biological adhesion and lubrication, relating molecular composition to conformation and function, for two classes of proteins: mucin glycoproteins that lubricate many surfaces of the human body, and mussel foot proteins that provide underwater surface adhesion. In both cases, the key molecular feature is the presence of specific functional groups: strongly hydrophilic sugar groups in mucins and surface-binding L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) in mussels.
The study is conducted mainly using the Surface Force Apparatus (SFA) and Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) on protein layers adsorbed on solid surfaces and functional coatings with known physical-chemical properties (surface charge, polarity, roughness, etc.). Insights into the molecular-scale mechanism of surface adhesion and lubrication can be translated into the molecular structure of biomimetic synthetic polymer, which are also considered in this project.

(a) Sphere-plane confinement geometry is used in SFA and AFM force measurements on proteins and other chain-like molecules. Adhesive groups such as the DOPA in Perna Viridis foot protein (PVFP) create a network of surface bridges. (b) AFM force measurement on a biomimetic adhesive polymer inspired to PVFPs. The small probe radius R ≈ 10 nm is able to resolve single bridge stretching and bond rupture events, and measure the adhesive force F0 and work of adhesion W. (c) SFA with R ≈ 2 cm measures the force generated by a much larger population of molecules. (d) AFM allows imaging single proteins and small aggregates. The image shows mucin molecules adsorbed on a flat surface.
(a) Sphere-plane confinement geometry is used in SFA and AFM force measurements on proteins and other chain-like molecules. Adhesive groups such as the DOPA in Perna Viridis foot protein (PVFP) create a network of surface bridges. (b) AFM force measurement on a biomimetic adhesive polymer inspired to PVFPs. The small probe radius R ≈ 10 nm is able to resolve single bridge stretching and bond rupture events, and measure the adhesive force F0 and work of adhesion W. (c) SFA with R ≈ 2 cm measures the force generated by a much larger population of molecules. (d) AFM allows imaging single proteins and small aggregates. The image shows mucin molecules adsorbed on a flat surface.

Adhesive and viscoelastic properties of biomolecular thin films and biomaterials

This project is focused on the quantitative analysis of the mechanical properties of polymers, protein layers and biological tissues for biomedical applications.
The cornea is the transparent front part of the eye that covers the iris, pupil, and anterior chamber and provides 2/3 of the eye’s focusing power. The cornea has the structure of a thin shell with the external and internal surfaces having an ellipsoidal geometry. In the last three years our research has been focused mainly on the study of the mechanical properties of the corneal stroma using atomic force microscopy. A part of the research was devoted to the study of the effects induced in corneal tissues by the riboflavin/UV-A cross-linking technique, used for the treatment of the corneal disease known as keratoconus. Another part of the research was aimed to study the depth-dependent mechanical anisotropy of the human corneal stroma at the micro- and nano-level and to determine whether the biomechanics of the stroma involves any relationships between different scales of measurement. The research is carried out using Atomic Force Microscopy and Force Spectroscopy.

Biofunctionalization of materials and devices

Biomimetic and bioinspired materials present an emerging field in the areas of biomedicine, bioengineering, and biological science. Of particular interest is the current trend toward the production of biofunctional materials that are able to interact with the surrounding biological environment thereby enabling applications in tissue engineering, therapy, biosensing and bioimaging. In the case of tissue engineering, biomimetically inspired biomaterials include hydrogels, calcium phosphates (CaP) like hydroxyapatite (HA), magnesium containing coatings and materials containing proteins or peptides of the extracellular matrix (ECM). Low pressure and atmospheric pressure, plasma-assisted approaches can be used in order to improve the attachment of biomolecules onto materials, promote the adsorption of microcarriers to deliver a specific biomolecule (i.e. growth factors or bioactive agents) or plasma deposit in a single step coatings containing the molecules of interest that mimick the ECM environment or coatings containing magnesium and/or hydroxyapatite.

Fluorescence microscopy of SAOS 2 cells grown on PCL scaffold before (native, left) and after (100%H2_Mg, right) plasma sputtering deposition of a Mg-containing coating aimed to release Mg2+ and OH- ions.
Fluorescence microscopy of SAOS 2 cells grown on PCL scaffold before (native, left) and after (100%H2_Mg, right) plasma sputtering deposition of a Mg-containing coating aimed to release Mg2+ and OH- ions.

Facilities & Labs

Micro/nano fabrication @ Rende

Bio lab @ Rende

Structural and morphological characterizations lab @ Rende

Plasma Technologies Lab @ URT Bari

Chemical-Structural Characterization Lab @ URT Bari

Bio Lab @ URT Bari

People

michel giocondoMichele

Giocondo

CNR Researcher

PaoloFrancesco_AmbricoPaolo Francesco

Ambrico

Eloisa_SardellaEloisa

Sardella

CNR Researcher

Bruno_RizzutiBruno

Rizzuti

CNR Researcher

Pasquale_PagliusiPasquale

Pagliusi

Associate Professor

Bruno_ZapponeBruno

Zappone

CNR Researcher

MariaPenelope_DeSantoMaria P.

De Santo

Associate Resercher

Riccardo_BarbieriRiccardo

Barberi

Associate Professor

Pietro-FaviaPietro

Favia

Associate Professor

Roberto_GristinaRoberto

Gristina

CNR Researcher

fabio_palumbor150Fabio

Palumbo

CNR Researcher

Federica_ciuchiFederica

Ciuchi

CNR Researcher

Publications

  1. L. Petrone, A. Kumar, C. N. Sutanto, N. J. Patil, S. Kannan, A. Palaniappan, S. Amini, B. Zappone, C. Verma and A. Miserez, Mussel adhesion is dictated by time-regulated secretion and molecular conformation of mussel adhesive proteins, Nature Communications  6, 8737 (2015) ISSN: 2041-1723; doi: 10.1038/ncomms9737
  2. B. Zappone, N. Patil, J. Madsen, K. Pakkanen, S. Lee, Molecular Structure and Equilibrium Forces of Bovine Submaxillary Mucin Adsorbed at a Solid-Liquid Interface Langmuir, 31 (15), 4524-4533 (2015) ISSN: 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/acs.langmuir.5b00548
  3. R. Guzzi, B. Rizzuti, C. Labate, B. Zappone, M.P. De Santo, Ferric ions inhibit the amyloid fibrillation of ß-lactoglobulin at high temperature, Biomacromolecules, 16, 1794-1801 (2015). ISSN: 1525-7797; doi: 10.1021/acs.biomac.5b00371
  4. C. Labate, M.P. De Santo, G. Lombardo, M. Lombardo, Understanding Of The Viscoelastic Response Of The Human Corneal Stroma Induced By Riboflavin/Uv-A Cross-Linking At The Nano Level, Plos One, 10, 4 pag UNSP e0122868 (2015), ISSN: 1932-6203 doi: 10.1371/Journal.Pone.0122868
  5. C. Labate, M. Lombardo, M. P. De Santo, J. Dias. N.M. Ziebarth, G. Lombardo, Multiscale Investigation Of The Depth-Dependent Mechanical Anisotropy Of The Human Corneal Stroma, Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science 56 (6), 4053-60 (2015) ISSN: 0146-0404;doi: 10.1167/Iovs.15-16875.
  6. T. Røn, I. Javakhishvili, N. J. Patil; K. Jankova Atanasova, B. Zappone, S. Hvilsted, S. Lee, Aqueous lubricating properties of charged (ABC) and neutral (ABA) triblock copolymer chains Polymer 55, 4873–4883 (2014). ISSN: 0032-3861; doi: 10.1016/j.polymer.2014.07.049
  7. G. Da Ponte, E. Sardella, F. Fanelli, S. Paulussen, P. Favia. Atmospheric pressure plasma deposition of poly lactic acid-like coatings with embedded elastin. Plasma processes and polymers 11-4 (2014) 342-352 ISSN: 1612-8850; doi: 10.1002/ppap.201300130

Other selected publications

  1. Houmadi, R.D. Rodriguez, S. Longobardi, P. Giardina, M. C. Fauré, M. Giocondo, E. Lacaze, Self-Assembly of Hydrophobin Protein Rodlets Studied with Atomic Force Spectroscopy in Dynamic Mode Langmuir 28(5), 2551-2557 (2012). ISSN: 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/la2028093
  2. De Stefano, I. Rea, E. De Tommasi, I. Rendina, L. Rotiroti, M. Giocondo, S. Longobardi, A. Armenante, and P. Giardina. Bioactive Modification of Silicon Surface using Self-assembled Hydrophobins from Pleurotus ostreatusEPJ E-Soft Matter & Biological Physics, 30(2), 181-185 (2009) ISSN: 1292-8941; doi: 10.1140/epje/i2009-10481-y
  3. Houmadi, F. Ciuchi, M.P. De Santo, L. De Stefano, I. Rea, P. Giardina, A. Armenante, E. Lacaze and M. Giocondo. Langmuir-Blodgett film of hydrophobin protein from Pleurotus ostreatus at the air-water interfaceLangmuir, 24(22), 12953–12957, (2008). ISSN: 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/la802306r
  4. De Stefano, I.  Rea, A. Armenante, I. Rendina,  P. Giardina and  M. Giocondo. Self-Assembled Biofilm of Hydrophobins Protect the Silicon Surface in the KOH Wet Etch Process, Langmuir 23(15) 7920 (2007) ISSN: 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/la701189b
  5. Das; X. Banquy; B. Zappone; G. W. Greene; G. Jay; J. Israelachvili , Synergistic interactions between grafted Hyaluronic acid and Lubricin provide enhanced wear protection and lubrication, Biomacromolecules 14, 1669–1677 (2013). ISSN: 1525-7797; doi: 10.1021/bm400327a
  6. Zappone, P. J. Thurner, J. Adams, G. E. Fantner, P. K. Hansma, Effect of Ca2+ ions on the adhesion and mechanical properties of adsorbed layers of human Osteopontin, Biophysical Journal, 95,  1-12 (2008). ISSN: 0006-3495; doi: 10.1529/biophysj.108.135889
  7. Zappone, G. W. Greene, E. Ouroudjev, G. D. Jay, J. N. Israelachvili, Molecular aspects of the boundary lubrication by human Lubricin: effect of disulphide bonds and enzymatic digestion, Langmuir 24, 1495-1508 (2008). ISSN: 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/la702383n
  8. Zappone, M. Ruths, G. W. Greene, G. D. Jay, J. N. Israelachvili, Adsorption, lubrication and wear of Lubricin on model surfaces: Polymer brush-like behavior of a glycoprotein, Biophysical Journal 92, 1693-1708 (2007). ISSN: 0006-3495; doi: 10.1529/biophysj.106.088799
  9. Lombardo M, Lombardo G, Carbone G, De Santo Mp, Barberi R, Serrao S, Biomechanics Of The Anterior Human Corneal Tissue Investigated With Atomic Force Microscopy. Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science, 53, 1050-1057 (2012) ISSN: 0146-0404; doi: 10.1167/iovs.11-8720
  10. Lombardo M, Carbone G, Lombardo G, De Santo Mp, Barberi R, Analysis Of Intraocular Lens Surface Adhesiveness By Atomic Force Microscopy, Journal Of Cataract And Refractive Surgery, 35, 1266-1272 (2009) ISSN: 0886-335; doi: 10.1016/j.jcrs.2009.02.0290

Project

  1. PRIN 2010–2011 (PROxi project).
  2. Laboratorio SISTEMA – Laboratorio per lo Sviluppo Integrato delle Scienze e delle TEcnologie dei Materiali Avanzati e per dispositivi innovativi; Potenziamento Strutturale PONa3_00369 , (2012 – 2014)

Latest News

Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

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Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

Lecce, Italy, 2017 Wednesday July 19th 

CNR NANOTEC @ Lecce, Aula Seminari – pal. G, Piano Terra

Program - PDF

Zeiss, as microscopy technology leader, provides the unique complete imaging solution ranging from light, confocal, electron, ion and Xray modalities with a complete and straightforward correlative workflow. An overview of different technologies will be presented with a special focus on X-Rray microscopy.

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MCS 2017

International Workshop on Micropropulsion and CubeSats

Bari, Italy, 26 - 27 June 2017

Program - MSC2017

This narrow-field, invited-only meeting is the first attempt to bring together the Materials and Micropropulsion communities with a view to contribute to the development of the Global Materials and Micropropulsion Roadmap, and set such meetings to a regular basis.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Cetraro (CS), 3 -5 maggio 2017

Il programma completo dell'evento - download

La tre giorni dedicata ai risultati di ricerca conseguiti e alle strategie scientifiche da intraprendere nel prossimo futuro.

Regenerative medicine

A scheme which summarizes approaches (i.e. spinning and biofactories) to produce artificial biocompatible and biodegradable fibres for tissue engineering applications.
A scheme which summarizes approaches (i.e. spinning and biofactories) to produce artificial biocompatible and biodegradable fibres for tissue engineering applications.

Regenerative medicine is a branch of translational research in tissue engineering and molecular biology which deals with the process of replacing, engineering or regenerating cells, tissues or organs to restore or establish normal function. At NANOTEC we aim to regenerate damaged tissues by combining cells from the body with highly porous biodegradable scaffolds, which act as templates for tissue regeneration. We also use powerful state of the art techniques to study the bone-tissue regeneration mechanism

Smart Materials for Regenerative Medicine

Current regenerative medicine strategies are mainly focused on the design of improved biomaterials that are non-immunogenic, biocompatible, and biodegradable, and can be functionalized with bioactive proteins and chemicals. Our research is based on alternative approach to produce biomaterials that mimic the extracellular matrix (ECM). For instance artificial biocompatible and biodegradable fibrous extracellular matrices are realized using a variety of natural and synthetic polymers in order to increase cell proliferation and cell adhesion. Another approach involves freeze-dried 3D porous collagen–chitosan scaffolds which are functionalized with protease-responsive capsules loaded with growth factors for guiding and controlling the release of selected bioactive agents that work in concert with the implants.

In association with Maastricht University (Prof. L. Moroni; http://www.moronilab.org/), several biofabrication technologies are also being developed to create smart constructs and direct cell fate. The core activities of the group evolve around acquiring and implementing knowledge for biofabrication technologies based on the following research objectives: (i) develop biofabrication technologies based on additive manufacturing and spinning, and bottom-up methodologies; (ii) integrate neural and vascular cues on current tissue regeneration strategies; (iii) engineer the immune response of biomaterials and biomedical devices.

Biofactories

Another alternative emerging approach involves biomaterials produced by the cells themselves in response to a chemical stimulus. Indeed, we exploited living cells as factories to produce new, functional and intelligent fibrils for tissue engineering, through the aid of synthetic dyes which spontaneously penetrate the membrane of living cells.

Plasma processing of scaffolds for tissue engineering

Plasma processing of scaffolds for tissue engineering can be used mainly to: 1) functionalize the scaffold surface in order to improve, when necessary, its hydrophilic character (i.e. transport of metabolites and waste products through water); 2) produce graded chemical composition from the top to the scaffold’s core to enhance cell colonization of the whole scaffold; 3) “decorate” the scaffold’s surface with biomimetic coatings containing proteins or ceramics (i.e. hydroxyapatite or magnesium) that resembles the natural tissue composition. On the other hand the application of plasma directly on cells or on cell culture media (plasma medicine) should promote a selective improvement of cell proliferation on 3D porous scaffolds stimulating in turn the regeneration of new tissue.

In association with Maastricht University (Prof. L. Moroni), we aim at engineering functional biomaterials to create 3D scaffolds able to control cell fate. This challenge is approached through a biomimetic design inspired by cell niches. Several strategies are being pursued, comprising smart coatings (e.g. layer-by-layer technology), chemical functionalization (e.g. covalent vs dynamic binding), and physical modification of surface properties (e.g. stiffness vs topography).

Left: Micro-CT of plasma modified polycaprolacton (PCL) scaffolds; fluorescent microscopy images (centre) and SEM scan of SAOS-2 cells grown on plasma modified PCL scaffold
Left: Micro-CT of plasma modified polycaprolacton (PCL) scaffolds; fluorescent microscopy images (centre) and SEM scan of SAOS-2 cells grown on plasma modified PCL scaffold

Bone-tissue engineering

A deeper comprehension of the biomineralization process is at the basis of tissue engineering and will be instrumental to the further development of regenerative medicine. The achievement of a complete and exhaustive explanation of a process as complex as biomineralization requires the synergy of different advanced experimental techniques. In this framework, we have developed a multi-scale approach–based on different complementary X-ray experimental techniques coupled to new analytical tools, which provide structural and morphological information on the engineered tissues, from the atomic to the micrometric scale. In particular we study the mechanism of mineralized matrix deposition in a tissue engineering approach in which bone tissue is formed when porous ceramic constructs are loaded with bone marrow stromal cells and implanted in vivo.
High resolution X-ray Phase contrast Tomography (XPCT) provides the 3D spatial distribution of the different tissues participating to the biomineralization process; Scanning X-ray micro diffraction (XRmD) exploits the focused sub-micrometer X-ray beam to achieve atomic information with high spatial resolution. Scanning through the beam the organic–inorganic interface, within a porous scaffold of the sample, we are able to distinguish and monitor the evolution of the different ‘players’ of the regeneration process (Collagen, Organic Matrix, Hydroxy Apatite (HA), amorphous calcium phosphate (ACP)). X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) verifies the chemical evolution of the different growing phases and investigates the distribution of Ca in the regenerated bone. This multi-technique approach provides information on the first steps of biomineralization: we investigate the precursor of the biomineralization, the ACP working as a Ca reservoir, the dynamics of the collagen which is anisotropically distributed far from the scaffold interface but strongly packed at the organic–inorganic interface. When Ca ions are sequestered inside the collagen gaps, the mineralization starts to develop and bone nanoparticles appear at the scaffold interface.
To monitor the relation between bone formation and vascularization, it is important to achieve a detailed imaging and a quantitative description of the complete three-dimensional vascular network in such constructs. We imaged the 3D vascularization network inside the scaffold, without any sample sectioning and preparation. This study of angiogenesis in tissue engineering is crucial for the evaluation of the performance of an artificially implanted construct. Indeed the control of the angiogenesis of the micro-vascular network with proper spatial organization is a key step to obtain tissue regeneration and repair.

(above) Sample preparation of engineered bone tissue: harvesting of cells from animal, differentiation of BMSC, seeding on the scaffold, implantation on the animal. (below) Analysis of the engineered bone by XPCT and by XRmD.

Facilities & Labs

Characterization Lab @ Lecce

Bio Lab @ Lecce

Toma Lab @ Rome

Bio Lab @ URT Bari

Plasma Technologies Lab @ URT Bari

Chemical-Structural Characterization Lab @ URT Bari

People

Laura_BlasiLaura

Blasi

CNR Researcher

Barbara_CorteseBarbara

Cortese

CNR Researcher

Loretta_delMercatoLoretta L.

del Mercato

CNR Researcher

Ilaria_PalamaIlaria E.

Palamà

CNR Researcher

michelaMichela

Fratini

CNR Researcher

scoles

Giacinto

Scoles

Emeritus Professor

Alessandra_QuartaAlessandra

Quarta

CNR Researcher

cedolaAlessia

Cedola

CNR Researcher

innaInna

Bukreeva

CNR Researcher

Eloisa_SardellaEloisa

Sardella

CNR Researcher

fabrizioFabrizio

Bardelli

Associate Researcher

Pietro-FaviaPietro

Favia

Associate Professor

Roberto_GristinaRoberto

Gristina

CNR Researcher

Lorenzo_MoroniLorenzo

Moroni

Associate Professor

lorenzo_3Lorenzo

Massimi

CNR PostDoc

brun_2Francesco

Brun

CNR PostDoc

 

Publications

  1. F. Spano, A. Quarta, C. Martelli, L. Ottobrini, R. R.M.  Rossi, G. Gigli, L. Blasi, Fibrous scaffolds fabricated by emulsion electrospinning: from hosting capacity to in vivo biocompatibility. Nanoscale, 8: 9293-9303, 2016. ISSN: 2040-3364; doi: 10.1039/c6nr00782a
  2. I. E. Palamà, F. Di Maria, S. D’Amone, G. Barbarella, G. Gigli Biocompatible and biodegradable fluorescent microfibers physiologically secreted by live cells upon spontaneous uptake of thiophene fluorophore. G. Journal of Materials Chemistry B, 3, 151- 158 (2015). ISSN: 2050-750X; doi: 10.1039/c4tb01562b.
  3. G. Ciasca, M. Papi, L. Businaro, G. Campi, M. Ortolani, V. Palmieri, A. Cedola, A. De Ninno, A. Gerardino, G. Maulucci, M. De Spirito Recent advances in superhydrophobic surfaces and their relevance to biology and medicine. Bioinspiration & biomimetics 11 (1), 011001, 2016. ISSN: 2050-750X; doi:10.1088/1748-3190/11/1/011001.
  4. F. Intranuovo, R. Gristina, L. Fracassi, L. Lacitignola, A. Crovace, P. Favia; Plasma processing of scaffolds for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Plasma Chemistry and Plasma Processing, 36, (2016) 269-280, ISSN: 02724324, doi: 10.1007/s11090-015-9667-0
  5. M. Fratini, G. Campi, I. Bukreeva, D. Pelliccia, M. Burghammer, G. Tromba, R. Cancedda, M. Mastrogiacomo, A. Cedola. X-ray micro-beam techniques and phase contrast tomography applied to biomaterials. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section B: Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms 364, 93-97, 2015. ISSN: 0168-583X; doi: 10.1016/j.nimb.2015.06.023.
  6. G. Campi, M. Fratini, I. Bukreeva, G. Ciasca, M. Burghammer, F. Brun, G. Tromba, M. Mastrogiacomo, A. Cedola. Imaging collagen packing dynamics during mineralization of engineered bone tissue Acta biomaterialia, 23, 309-316 (2015). ISSN: 1742-7061; doi: 10.1016/j.actbio.2015.05.033.
  7. I. Bukreeva, M. Fratini, G. Campi, D. Pelliccia, R. Spanò, F. Brun, M. Burghammer, M. Grilli, R. Cancedda, A. Cedola, M. Mastrogiacomo High-resolution X-ray techniques as new tool to investigate the 3D vascularization of engineered-bone tissue. Frontiers in bioengineering and biotechnology, 3, 133 (2015).ISSN: 2296-4185; doi:10.3389/fbioe.2015.00133
  8. E. Sardella, E. R. Fisher, J. C. Shearer, M. Garzia Trulli, R. Gristina, P. Favia, N2/H2O Plasma Assisted Functionalization of Poly(ε-caprolactone) Porous Scaffolds: Acidic/Basic Character versus Cell Behavior, Plasma Process. Polym. 12-8, 786-798 (2015); ISSN: 16128850, doi: 10.1002/ppap.201400201
  9. I. Trizio, F. Intranuovo, R. Gristina, G. Dilecce, P. Favia, He/O2 atmospheric pressure plasma jet treatments of PCL scaffolds for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Plasma Processes and Polymers 12-12, 1451-1458 (2015) , ISSN: 16128850, doi: 10.1002/ppap.201500104
  10. I. Trizio, E. Sardella, E. Francioso, G. Dilecce, V. Rizzi, P. Cosma, M. Schmidt, M. Hansch, T. von Woedtke, P. Favia, R. Gristina, Investigation of air-DBD effects on biological liquids for in vitro studies on eukaryotic cells, Clinical Plasma Medicine 3-2, 62-71 (2015) ISSN: 22128166, doi: 10.1016/j.cpme.2015.09.003
  11. F. Intranuovo, R. Gristina, F. Brun, S. Mohammadi, G. Ceccone, E. Sardella, F.Rossi, G. Tromba, P. Favia, Plasma modification of PCL porous scaffolds fabricated by solvent-casting/particulate-leaching for tissue engineering, Plasma Process. Polym. 11, 184–195 (2014), ISSN: 16128850, doi: 10.1002/ppap.201300149
  12. R. Spano, I. Bukreeva, G. Campi, G. Tromba, F. Brun, A. Cedola, R. Cancedda, M. Mastrogiacomo Vascular network visualization in bone tissue engineered construct by synchrotron X-ray microtomography. Journal of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine 8, 211-211 (2014). ISSN: 1932-6254;
  13. Campi, I. Bukreeva, M. Fratini, M. Mastrogiacomo, A. Cedola Imaging tissue regeneration/degeneration by combined X-ray micro-diffraction and phase contrast micro-tomography. In Journal of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine 8, 66-67, 2014. ISSN: 1932-6254;

Other selected publications

  1. I. E. Palamà, F. Di Maria, I. Viola, E. Fabiano, G. Gigli, C. Bettini, G. Barbarella. Live-cell-permeant thiophene fluorophores and cell-mediated formation of fluorescent fibrils. Journal of the American Chemical Society (JACS), 133, 17777–17785 (2011). ISSN: 0002-7863; doi: 10.1021/la2065522
  2. I. Viola, I. E. Palamà, A. M. L. Coluccia, M. Biasiucci, B. Dozza, E. Lucarelli, C. Bettini, G. Barbarella, G. Gigli Physiological formation of fluorescent and conductive protein microfibers in live fibroblasts upon spontaneous uptake of biocompatible fluorophores. Integrative Biology, 5, 1057- 1066, 2013. ISSN: 1757-9694; doi: 10.1039/c3ib40064f.
  3. G. Campi, G. Pezzotti, M. Fratini, A. Ricci, M. Burghammer, R. Cancedda, I. Bukreeva, M. Mastrogiacomo, A. Cedola, Imaging regenerating bone tissue based on neural networks applied to micro-diffraction measurements. Applied Physics Letters,103 (25), 253703 (2013) ISSN: 0003-6951; doi: 10.1063/1.4852056
  4. G. Campi, A. Ricci, A. Guagliardi, C. Giannini, S. Lagomarsino, R. Cancedda, M. Mastrogiacomo, A. Cedola. Early stage mineralization in tissue engineering mapped by high resolution X-ray microdiffraction. Acta biomaterialia,8(9), 3411-3418. 2012 ISSN: 1742-7061; doi: 10.1016/j.actbio.2012.05.034.
  5. A. Guagliardi, A. Cedola, C. Giannini, M. Ladisa, A. Cervellino, A. Sorrentino, S. Lagomarsino, R. Cancedda, M. Mastrogiacomo. Debye function analysis and 2D imaging of nanoscaled engineered bone. Biomaterials, 31(32), 8289-8298 (2010). ISSN: 0142-9612; doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2010.07.051
  6. M. Domingos, F. Intranuovo, A. Gloria, R. Gristina, L. Ambrosio, P.J. Bartolo, P. Favia, Improved osteoblast cell affinity on plasma modified 3-D extruded PCL scaffolds. Acta Biomaterialia 9-4, 5997-6005 (2013) ISSN: 1742-7061; doi: 10.1016/j.actbio.2012.12.031
  7. R. Cancedda, A. Cedola, A. Giuliani, V. Komlev, S. Lagomarsino, M. Mastrogiacomo, F. Peyrin, F. Rustichelli. Bulk and interface investigations of scaffolds and tissue-engineered bones by X-ray microtomography and X-ray microdiffraction. Biomaterials, 28(15), 2505-2524 (2007). ISSN: 0142-9612; doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2007.01.022
  8. M. Mastrogiacomo, A. Papadimitropoulos, A. Cedola, F. Peyrin, P. Giannoni, S. G. Pearce, M. Alini, C. Giannini, A. Guagliardi, R. Cancedda Engineering of bone using bone marrow stromal cells and a silicon-stabilized tricalcium phosphate bioceramic: evidence for a coupling between bone formation and scaffold resorption. Biomaterials, 28(7), 1376-1384 (2007). ISSN: 0142-9612; doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2006.10.001
  9. V. S. Komlev, F. Peyrin, M. Mastrogiacomo, A. Cedola, A. Papadimitropoulos, F. Rustichelli, R. Cancedda, Kinetics of in vivo bone deposition by bone marrow stromal cells into porous calcium phosphate scaffolds: an X-ray computed microtomography study. Tissue engineering, 12(12), 3449-3458, 2006. ISSN: 1076-3279; doi: 10.1089/ten.2006.12.3449
  10. A. Cedola, M. Mastrogiacomo, S. Lagomarsino, R. Cancedda, C. Giannini, A. Guagliardi, M. Ladisa, M. Burghammer, F. Rustichelli, V. Komlev, Orientation of mineral crystals by collagen fibers during in vivo bone engineering: an X-ray diffraction imaging study Spectrochimica Acta Part B: Atomic Spectroscopy, 62(6), 642-647,2007. ISSN: 0584-8547; doi: 10.1016/j.sab.2007.02.015

Awards

1. Special mention to Eloisa Sardella during the competition “Italia Camp-your idea for the country (la tua idea per il paese)” during the BarCamp “ Stati Generali del Mezzogiorno d’Europa” with the idea titled “plasma3D” 2012

Project

  1. NaBiDiT – Nano-Biotecnologie per Diagnostica e sviluppo di Terapie innovative; Regional project APQ Ricerca Scientifica—Reti di Laboratori Pubblici di Ricerca – (2010-2012)
  2. MAGNIFYCO – Magnetic nanocontainers for combined hyperthermia and controlled drug release; Project ID: 228622 – FP7-NMP (2009-2013)
  3. RINOVATIS – Rigenerazione di tessuti nervosi ed osteocartilaginei mediante innovativi approcci di Tissue Engineering, MIUR-PON Grant PON02_00563_3448479, 2013-2015, Alessandro Sannino (coordinator), P. Favia

Latest News

Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

Lecce, Italy, 2017 Wednesday July 19th 

CNR NANOTEC @ Lecce, Aula Seminari – pal. G, Piano Terra

Program - PDF

Zeiss, as microscopy technology leader, provides the unique complete imaging solution ranging from light, confocal, electron, ion and Xray modalities with a complete and straightforward correlative workflow. An overview of different technologies will be presented with a special focus on X-Rray microscopy.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

MCS 2017

International Workshop on Micropropulsion and CubeSats

Bari, Italy, 26 - 27 June 2017

Program - MSC2017

This narrow-field, invited-only meeting is the first attempt to bring together the Materials and Micropropulsion communities with a view to contribute to the development of the Global Materials and Micropropulsion Roadmap, and set such meetings to a regular basis.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Cetraro (CS), 3 -5 maggio 2017

Il programma completo dell'evento - download

La tre giorni dedicata ai risultati di ricerca conseguiti e alle strategie scientifiche da intraprendere nel prossimo futuro.

Cell biology

The research activities of this area at the cross-roads of materials science, nanotechnology and cell biology, primarily focusing on how newly-discovered materials and interfacial processes can be developed and used for specific applications. In particular, our research emphasizes cytomechanic studies correlating cytomechanical profiles to the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms to isolate and study extracellular vesicles, with materials engineering promoting and driving cell adhesion and differentiation.

Cellular homeostasis and cytomechanics

The surface of living cells is strictly related to many cellular processes such as adhesion, signalling, transport, energy transformation, tumour metastasis etc. Cellular functions are mediated by a plethora of specific biomolecules including cell-to-cell adhesion proteins and those that constitute the highly complex and dynamic architecture of the cytoskeleton which, in turn, connects structurally and functionally the intracellular environments with the extracellular matrix via other adhesion molecules.

Our research activities focus on the biomolecular and cytomechanical cellular behaviour of primary fibroblast cultures related to juvenile hereditary Parkinson’s disease and of epithelial tumour cell lines. Nanomechanical properties of single cells obtained by advanced microscopic techniques allow to correlate morpho-mechanical cellular state changes upon interaction with pharmacological agents and the underlying biological \ biochemical processes.

From Left to right: Cover image of Ref. 4, selected publications; CLSM micrographs of organization of F-actin (stained with phalloidin, in red) and microtubules (stained with a-Tub, in green) filaments in fibroblasts cells (nuclei stained with DAPI, in blue) (Ref.3);  Laser scanning confocal microscopy (left) and Scanning Force Microscopy image (right) of MCF-7 cells grown on Fn modified Petri dish. Cells were stained with TRITC-labelled phalloidin to reveal F-actin and with Hoechst to detect nuclei. When grown on Fn, the cells exhibited short actin-rich extensions around their perimeters, as indicated by arrows, as well as cytoplasmic extensions at the cell edges.
From Left to right: Cover image of Ref. 4, selected publications; CLSM micrographs of organization of F-actin (stained with phalloidin, in red) and microtubules (stained with a-Tub, in green) filaments in fibroblasts cells (nuclei stained with DAPI, in blue) (Ref.3); Laser scanning confocal microscopy (left) and Scanning Force Microscopy image (right) of MCF-7 cells grown on Fn modified Petri dish. Cells were stained with TRITC-labelled phalloidin to reveal F-actin and with Hoechst to detect nuclei. When grown on Fn, the cells exhibited short actin-rich extensions around their perimeters, as indicated by arrows, as well as cytoplasmic extensions at the cell edges.

Analysis of Extracellular vesicles 

A recently developed research activity concerns the EVs isolation from fibroblasts of parkin-mutant patients and the characterization of their biochemical differences compared to EV derived from control samples. In particular, EVs are isolated from culture media by an optimized differential centrifugation protocol and their size and morphology determined by flow cytometry, electron and atomic force microscopy. We are also performing a mass spectrometry analysis to investigate their lipidomic profiles.

Materials for cell engineering

Cell engineering is a very promising research field which aims to induce specific biological processes such as proliferation and differentiation, cell-to-cell interaction, biomolecular production and extracellular matrix (ECM) formation, at the cell/material interface. Specifically cell migration is a phenomenon that is involved in different physiological processes such as morphogenesis, wound healing and tumour invasion. Biochemical or biophysical stimuli such as chemotaxis, galvanotaxis extracellular matrix compliance/stiffness and topology can influence cell migration in terms of speed, direction and persistence. The control of the cell environment by multiple physicochemical cues has therefore emerged as a key factor to enable functionality, modulate response, and affect cell behaviour.

In particular our recent studies have shown that cells are able to recognize the mechanical properties of a substratum over which they move and that these properties direct the motion through a phenomenon called durotaxis. Thus, mechanical interactions between a cell and its underlying substratum play a crucial role in modulating cell motility. We are investigating combinations of external stimuli ranging from chemical to mechanical and electrical cues in the cellular microenvironment. Moreover we are carrying out cell tracking analysis to deepen our understanding of the mechanisms underlying cell motility.

. Mechanical variables influencing cell migration. Cells movement is random on substrate with a homogeneously distributed elasticity. However on a surface with an asymmetric elasticity, cells move by durotaxis towards regions with high elasticity. Representative tissue-stiffness and Young's modulus, E. Representative examples of durotactic regulation of cell behaviour on double sheeted PDMS substrates exhibiting a mechanical gradient due to the micropattern underlying a thin membrane. (On the lower right) Immunofluorescent staining showing the response of human fibroblasts to micro-patterned PDMS double sheet substrates with mechanical gradient.

Plasma processing to control cell adhesion

The nature of the interface between cells and materials can stimulate a repulsive (or adhesive) response that can causes the cells to separate (adhere) to the desired material. This effect dramatically depends on surface properties of the material. Plasma surface modification is applicable whenever the surface of the device has to be bioactive or bioinert by changing chemical/topographical features of a material surface without affecting its bulk properties. As an example, the irreversible, undesired adhesion of biomolecules and cells (i.e. ‘biofouling’) can be controlled by a plasma assisted deposition of Polyethylene oxide (PEO)-like coatings. On the other hand, surfaces containing polar groups (i.e NH2, COOH, OH etc. …) or deposition of coatings in which biological molecules are dispersed in an organic matrix can be produced by plasma in order to impart bioactivity and biocompatibility to the surface. Finally, surfaces with micro- and nanostructured coatings can dramatically improve cell/material interactions due to topographical cues.

Sketch of the potentialities of plasma processing of surfaces in order to produce micro-nanostructured surfaces (left); unfouling surfaces (top), biomimetic/bioactive surfaces in which a coating embedding active biomolecules are deposited (right) and functional surfaces containing chemical groups like amino, carbonyl, alcoholic and carboxylic ones (bottom)
Sketch of the potentialities of plasma processing of surfaces in order to produce micro-nanostructured surfaces (left); unfouling surfaces (top), biomimetic/bioactive surfaces in which a coating embedding active biomolecules are deposited (right) and functional surfaces containing chemical groups like amino, carbonyl, alcoholic and carboxylic ones (bottom)

Plasma processing of cells and biological liquids 

Cold atmospheric pressure plasmas are emerging as an exciting development for therapeutics. These plasmas are very efficient sources of highly reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (RONS), UV radiation, electromagnetic fields and charged particles. Experiments show that cold atmospheric plasmas allow efficient, contact-free and painless disinfection, without damaging healthy tissue. In healthcare, new horizons are being opened for wound healing, tissue regeneration, cancer therapy, and treatment of chronic wounds assisted by plasma technology.

Our facilities have been designed to allow us to study the response of different type of cells to different plasma doses and to correlate the chemical composition of plasma treated cell culture media with cell behaviour.

Negative effect of plasma dose (different treatment times) on Saos2 tumor cell lines cytoskeleton.
Negative effect of plasma dose (different treatment times) on Saos2 tumor cell lines cytoskeleton.

Facilities & Labs

NanoFab Lab @ Lecce

Lab di Caratterizzazione @ Lecce

Bio Lab @ Lecce

S.Li.M. Lab @ Roma

Bio Lab @ URT Bari

Chemical-Structural Characterization Lab@ URT Bari

Wet chemistry Lab@ URT Bari

Plasma Technologies Lab@ URT Bari

People

Franco_CalabiFranco

Calabi

CNR Senior Research

Antonio_GaballoAntonio

Gaballo

CNR Research

Viso_donnaPaola

Priore

CNR PostDoc

Ilaria_PalamaIlaria E.

Palamà

CNR Research

Barbara_CorteseBarbara

Cortese

CNR Research

Eloisa_SardellaEloisa

Sardella

CNR Researcher

Stefano_LeporattiStefano

Leporatti

CNR Research

Pietro-FaviaPietro

Favia

Associate Professor

Roberto_GristinaRoberto

Gristina

CNR Researcher

fabio_palumbor150Fabio

Palumbo

CNR Researcher

Publications

  1. Lippolis, R. A. Siciliano, C. Pacelli, A. Ferretta, M. F. Mazzeo, S. Scacco, F. Papa, A. Gaballo, C. Dell’Aquila, M. De Mari, S. Papa , T. Cocco, Altered protein expression  pattern in skin fibroblasts from parkin-mutant early-onset Parkinson’s disease patients. Biochimica Biophysica Acta, 1852, 1960-1970 (2015). ISSN: 0925-4439; doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2015.06.015
  2. Vergara, P. Simeone, F. Julien, M. Trerotola, A. Giudetti, L. Capobianco, A. Tinelli, C. Bellomo,
I. Fournie, A. Gaballo, S. Alberti, M. Salzet, M. Maffia, Translating epithelial mesenchymal transition markers into the clinic: Novel insights from proteomics EuPA Open Proteomics, 10, 31-41, (2016) ISSN: 2212-9685; doi:10.1016/j.euprot.2016.01.003
  3. Vergara, M. Ferraro, M.F. Cascione, L.L. del Mercato, S. Leporatti, A. Ferretta, P. Tanzarella, C. Pacelli, A. Santino, M. Maffia, T. Cocco, R. Rinaldi, A. Gaballo, Cytoskeletal Alterations and Biomechanical Properties of parkin-Mutant Human Primary Fibroblasts. Cell Biochemistry Biophysics, 71, 1395-1404, (2015). ISSN:1085-9195; doi: 10.1007/s12013-014-0362-1
  4. Ferretta, A. Gaballo, P. Tanzarella, C. Piccoli, N. Capitanio, B. Nico, T. Annese, M. Di Paola, C. Dell’aquila, M. De Mari, E. Ferranini, V. Bonifati, C. Pacelli, T. Cocco, Effect of resveratrol on mitochondrial function: implications in parkin-associated familiar Parkinson’s disease Biochimica Biophysica Acta, 1842, 902-915 (2014). ISSN: 0925-4439; doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2014.02.010
  5. Vergara, P. Simeone, D. Latorre, M.F. Cascione, S. Leporatti, M. Trerotola, A.M. Giudetti, L. Capobianco, P. Lunetti, A. Rizzello, R. Rinaldi, S. Alberti, M. Maffia. Proteomics analysis of E-Cadherin knockdown in epithelial breast cancer cells J. Biotechnology Special Issue EuroBiotech 22, 3-11 (2015). ISSN: 0168-1656; doi:10.1016/j.jbiotec.2014.10.034.
  6. E Palamà, S. D’Amone, B. Cortese, Chapter 22: Mechanical guidance of cell migration, Nanomaterials and Regenerative Medicine (Y. Lin and T. Gong, ed.) IAPCOBP Publishing, (2016) (invited chapter). ISBN: 978-953-56942-3-6. DOI: 10.5599/obp.9.0
  7. Pagani, R. C. Paolicelli, E. Murana, B. Cortese, S. Di Angelantonio, E. Zurolo, E.Guiducci, T. A. Ferreira, S. Garofalo, M. Catalano, G. D’Alessandro, A. Porzia, G.Peruzzi, F. Mainiero, C. Limatola, C.T. Gross, D. Ragozzino, Defective microglial development in the hippocampus of CX3CR1 deficient mice Front. Neurosci. 9,111. (2015) ISSN: 1662-5102; doi: 10.3389/fncel.2015.00111. ISSN: 1662-453X.
  8. Cortese, I.E Palamà, S. D’Amone, G. Gigli. Influence of electrotaxis on cell behaviourIntegr.Biol6,817 – 830, (2014). ISSN: 1520-6602; doi: 10.1039/C4IB00142G Integrative Biology 2014 HOT Articles.
  9. Sardella, E.R. Fisher, J.C. Shearer, M.G. Trulli, R. Gristina, P. Favia. N2/H2O plasma assisted functionalization of Poly(epsilon-caprolactone) porous scaffolds: acid/basic character versus cell behavior. Plasma processes and Polymers 12-8, 786-798 (2015). ISSN: 1612-8850; doi: 10.1002/ppap.201400201
  10. Yang, G. Camporeale, E. Sardella, G. Dilecce, J.S. Wu, F. Palumbo, P. Favia; Deposition of Hydroxyl Functionalized Films by means of water Aereosol assisted Atmospheric pressure plasma Plasma processes and polymers 11-11, 1102-1111 (2014) ISSN: 1612-8850; doi: 10.1002/ppap.201400066
  11. Trizio, E. Sardella, E. Francioso, G. Dilecce, V. Rizzi, P. Cosma, M. Schmidt, M. Hansch, T. von Woedtke, P. Favia, R. Gristina; Investigation of air-DBD effects on biological liquids for in vitro studies on eukaryotic cells, Clinical Plasma Medicine 3-2, 62-71 (2015). ISSN: 22128166; doi: 1016/j.cpme.2015.09.003.

Other selected publications

  1. C. Pacelli, D. De Rasmo, A. Signorile, I. Grattagliano, G. di Tullio, A. D’Orazio, B.Nico, G. P. Comi, D. Ronchi, E. Ferranini, D. Pirolo, P. Seibel, S. Schubert, A. Gaballo, G. Villani, T. Cocco Mitochondrial defect and PGC-1α dysfunction in parkin-associated familial Parkinson’s disease. Biochimica Biophysica Acta, 1812,1041-1053, (2011) ISSN: 0925-4439; doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2010.12.022
  2. N. Denora, V. Laquintana, A. Lopalco, R. M. Iacobazzi, A. Lopedota, A. Cutrignelli, G. Iacobellis, C. Annese, M. F. Cascione, S. Leporatti, M. Franco In vitro targeting and imaging the translocator protein TSPO 18-kDa through G(4)-PAMAM-FITC labeled dendrimers J. Contr. 172, 1111-1125 (2013). ISSN: 0168-3659; doi: 10.1016/j.jconrel.2013.09.024
  3. D. Vergara, P. Simeone, D. Toraldo, P. del Boccio, V. Vergaro, S. Leporatti, D. Pieragostino, A. Tinelli, S. De Domenico, S. Alberti, A. Urbani, M. Salzet, A. Santino, and M. Maffia Resveratrol downregulates Akt/GSK and ERK signalling pathways in OVCAR-3 ovarian cancer cells Molecular BioSystems 8, 1078-1087 (2012). ISSN: 1742-206X; doi: 10.1039/c2mb05486h
  4. Leporatti, D. Vergara, A. Zacheo, V. Vergaro, G. Maruccio, R. Cingolani, R. Rinaldi Cytomechanical and topological investigation of MCF-7 cells by scanning force microscopyNanotechnology 20 055103 (2009). (Paper of the month, Cover Page Issue) ISSN: 0957-4484; doi: 10.1088/0957-4484/20/5/055103
  5. I.E. Palamà, S. D’Amone, A.M.L. Coluccia, G. Gigli. Micropatterned polyelectrolyte multilayer films promote alignment and myogenic differentiation of C2C12 cells in standard growth medium. Biotechnology & Bioengineering, 110, 586-596, (2013). ISSN: 1097-0290; doi: 10.1002/bit.24626.
  6. B. Cortese,  M.O. Riehle, S. D’Amone, G. Gigli, Influence of Variable Substrate geometry on Wettability and Cellular Responses, Journal of Colloid and Interface Science 394, 582–589, (2013). ISSN: 0021-9797, doi: 10.1016/j.jcis.2012.11.051.
  7. I.E. Palamà, S. D’Amone, A.M.L. Coluccia, M. Biasiucci, G. Gigli Cell self-patterning on uniform PDMS-surface with controlled mechanical cues Integrative Biology, 4, 228-236, (2012). doi: 10.1039/c2ib00116k; ISSN 1757-9708; (Highlight: the paper is the 5th position of the “top ten most accessed articles” of Integrative Biology web site in the month of December 2011)
  8. B. Cortese, G. Gigli, M. Riehle, Mechanical Gradient Cues for Guided Cell Motility and Control of Cell Behaviour on uniform substrates, Adv. Funct. Mater., 19, 2961-2968, (2009). ISSN: 1616-3028; doi: 10.1002/adfm.200900918;
  9. B. Cortese, C. Piliego, I. Viola, S. D’Amone, R. Cingolani, G. Gigli, Engineering transfer of micro and nanometer scale features by surface energy modification, Langmuir, 25, 7025–7031, (2009). ISSN 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/la900248j.
  10. G. Da ponte, E. Sardella, F. Fanelli, R. d’Agostino, R. Gristina, P. Favia; Plasma deposition of PEO-like coatings wirth aereosol assisted dielectric barrier discharges PLASMA PROCESSES AND POLYMERS 9-11 1176-1183 (2012). ISSN: 16128850; doi: 10.1002/ppap.201100201

Patents

Process for the production by plasma of nanometric thickness coatings allowing controlled release of silver ions of other elements, or of molecules of biomedical interest, from solid products, and products thus coated R. D’agostino, P. Favia, F. Fracassi, E. Sardella, C. Costagliola, A. Mangone. Patent WO2013021409-A1: E. Sardella, P. Favia et al. WO2013021409 (2013)

Abstract: Process for the production by plasmochemical deposition of a film having a nanometric thickness, optionally multilayered, permitting carrying out in a controlled, uniform and long lasting way, release of substances of interest in a surrounding medium containing liquids, from a substrate including the substance to be released as micro/nano particles, or from a layer deposited on the substrate including the substance to be released as micro/nano particles, or from a layer of the substance to be released deposited on the substrate, or from a substrate that is the substance to be released optionally in the form of particles. The substances to be released can be metals, compounds having anti-bacterial properties, biologically active molecules such as drugs, hormones, vegetable extracts, peptides, lipids, protides and glucides. The layer with the substance to be released, be it organic or inorganic, is obtained by plasmochemical deposition optionally having a structure similar to polyethylene oxide (PEO) or polyethylene glycol (PEG), called PEO-like polymers, constituted, in a variable percentage da ethylene oxide units (-CH2CH2O-, EO); barrier film is obtained by depositing by plasma at least one organic or inorganic layer, optionally with a PEO-like structure, wherein chemical composition, degree of crosslinking and thickness are adjustable by the plasmo chemical deposition process parameters, and allow to adjust the release of the active substance according to specific needs. The structures on which the above said films can be deposited are: medical-surgical devices, common handworks, structures known as scaffolds, and the above defined substances to be released themselves. The invention also relates to medical-surgical devices, common handworks and scaffolds coated by a substrate and barrier layer, as well as to biologically active substances coated by at least one barrier layer.

Project

  1. My First AIRC Grant – Role of Electro/Mechanical cues in the control and guidance of Glioma Progression (MFAG)  2015 n. 16803 (2015-2018)
  2. SITEMA – Sviluppo di nuove metodologie e strumenti Innovativi per la diagnoSi ed il trattamento Terapeutico di tumori Epiteliali uMAni. Regione Puglia Bando “Aiuti a Sostegno Cluster Tecnologici Regionali” (2015-2017)
  3. RINOVATIS – Rigenerazione di tessuti nervosi ed osteocartilaginei mediante innovativi approcci di Tissue Engineering, PON MIUR PON02_00563_3448479, (2013-2015)

Awards

  1. Yang, G. Camporeale, E. Sardella, G. Dilecce, F. Palumbo, P. Favia, J.-S. Wu; One-step Atmospheric Pressure Plasma Synthesized Polyethylene Embedded with Tunable Amount of Lysozyme; Best Oral paper at 8th Asia-Pacific International Symposium on the Basics and Applications of Plasma Technology APSPT8 20th-22nd December, 2013, Hsinchu, Taiwan performed by the first author
  2. Camporeale, Y.W. Yang, E. Sardella, G. Dilecce, F. Palumbo, J.S. Wu, P. Favia; New protein carrier systems deposited by atmospheric pressure glow discharge fed with water-ethylene mixture Young Scientist Lecture Competition for the first author at 8th Int. Conf. on Surface, Caotings and Nano-Structured Materials; (NANOSMAT) 22-25 September 2013, Granada, Spain
  3. Trizio, R. Gristina, E. Sardella, E. Francioso, G. Dilecce, M. Schmidt, T. von Woedtke, P. Favia; Effects of air DBD on eukaryotic cells and biological liquids, Best Poster award at the 22nd International Symposium on Plasma Chemistry July 5-10, 2015 Antwerp, Belgium

Latest News

Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

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Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

Lecce, Italy, 2017 Wednesday July 19th 

CNR NANOTEC @ Lecce, Aula Seminari – pal. G, Piano Terra

Program - PDF

Zeiss, as microscopy technology leader, provides the unique complete imaging solution ranging from light, confocal, electron, ion and Xray modalities with a complete and straightforward correlative workflow. An overview of different technologies will be presented with a special focus on X-Rray microscopy.

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MCS 2017

International Workshop on Micropropulsion and CubeSats

Bari, Italy, 26 - 27 June 2017

Program - MSC2017

This narrow-field, invited-only meeting is the first attempt to bring together the Materials and Micropropulsion communities with a view to contribute to the development of the Global Materials and Micropropulsion Roadmap, and set such meetings to a regular basis.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Cetraro (CS), 3 -5 maggio 2017

Il programma completo dell'evento - download

La tre giorni dedicata ai risultati di ricerca conseguiti e alle strategie scientifiche da intraprendere nel prossimo futuro.

Biomolecular Delivery

On the left: Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) characterization of PNIPAM magnetic nanobeads (inset: cartoon sketching the DOXO-loaded nanobeads); in the middle: TEM images of invagination of the KB cell membrane and formation of the endosome containing the PNIPAM–NBs after 24 h at 37 °C. On the right: Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopy image (overlay of fluorescence and transmission) of halloysite clay nanotubes uptaken by cancer cellls and (inset) TEM image of halloysite clay nanotubes.

The major goal in designing nanosystems as drug delivery vectors is to control the release of pharmacologically active agents and to achieve the site-specific action of drugs at a therapeutically optimal rate and dosage regimen. Targeting of the nanocarrier at the action site and shielding of the surface to reduce adsorption of non-specific proteins are crucial aspects for augmenting the therapeutic efficacy. In this respect, studies about interactions between drugs and serum protein are of particular interest. The strategy of “drug delivery vectors” which is widely applied to the medical field can be translated to phyto-therapy with the aim of developing sustainable antimicrobial protection of plants. Beyond nanosystems, surfaces can be functionalized to release antimicrobial agents on demand.

 

Inorganic nano-carriers for targeted therapy

Among inorganic nanostructures, our research efforts have focused on the design of several types of multifunctional nanoparticles (NPs), such as magnetic or metallic nanoparticles and halloysite nanotubes loaded with anticancer drugs or used directly as therapeutic tools. Superparamagnetic NPs can be guided with a magnetic field to deliver attached drugs, in addition to hyperthermia treatment. In silver and silver-coated silica NPs, the metallic domain induces cell death upon laser irradiation and reactive oxygen species generation.

Plasmonic NPs are a class of metallic nanomaterials that mediate Localized Plasmon Resonance (LPR), resulting in highly enhanced electromagnetic fields (eg light) in their immediate neighbourhood. This can be exploited for triggering localised drug release or directly to kill diseased tissues via heat release, while sparing adjacent healthy tissues (Plasmonic PhotoThermal Therapy, PPTT). The possibility to deliver NPs to a tumor site and then exploit the efficient conversion of Near Infrared (NIR) light to heat opens up a new “drug-free” cancer therapy.

Another class of novel inorganic biocompatible nanomaterials for biomolecular delivery are Halloysite clay Nanotubes which are composed of double layered aluminosilicate minerals with a hollow tubular structure in the submicron range and are capable of entrapping and releasing drugs within the inner lumen.

NPs can deliver a variety of biomolecules; of particular relevance is the gene delivery process that allows the introduction of foreign DNA or RNA into host cells for therapy avoiding immune response in the patient. In this frame, we have combined NPs and a human whole genomic DNA exploiting the possibility to realize applications for Plasmonic Gene Therapy (PGT). The interaction between NPs and nucleic acids of different lengths have been studied by using analytical techniques such as Scanning Electron-Microscopy (SEM), Electrophoretic mobility assay and Zeta-potential measurements.

Stimuli-responsive organic carriers

(Left slide) Schematic illustration of pH-responsive nanogels exploited for the controlled uptake and release of hydrophobic and cationic solutes (Middle) Confocal laser scanning microscopy images of leukemic cells after 3 hours of incubation with DOX-PECs (red) and IM-CH-FITC PCL NPs (green). Cell nuclei were counterstained with DAPI (blue). Scale bars: 10 μm. (Right slide) Schematic illustration of couple delivery.

The next generation of nanomaterials for bio-engineered applications also employ stimuli-responsive organic carriers. These stimuli-responsive organic carriers experience structural variations in response to small changes of environmental conditions, thus triggering the release of the encapsulated/adsorbed drugs.

To date a variety of polymers sensitive to physical and biochemical stimuli, including light, pH, temperature, electric and magnetic fields, chemical analytes and biological components (i.e. protease) have been developed. Induced changes in a polymer chain’s conformation upon applying a certain stimulus lead to some consequences such as the increase/reduction of both pore size and permeability to analytes, as well as significant changes in volume and hydrophilic/hydrophobic properties. Nanoparticles sensitive to magnetic fields can be functionalized by lipids for different biomedical applications. Indeed, release systems based on stimuli-responsive polymers can be exploited to control molecular recognition, including capture, release and detection of biomolecules.

Drug-protein interactions

Human serum albumin (HSA) is the most abundant protein in the bloodstream, and constitutes up to 60% of the total serum proteins. One of its most extraordinary properties is the ability to bind reversibly a large variety of endogenous and exogenous ligands, such as hormones, fatty acids, and a great number of therapeutic drugs. In particular, it increases the solubility of hydrophobic drugs in plasma and modulates their delivery to cells. Consequently, binding to this protein controls the free, active concentration of a drug, provides a reservoir for a long duration of action, and strongly affects its absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion. Many experimental and computational techniques can be applied to determine the binding site and binding constant for the interaction of drugs with HSA. In particular, fluorescence spectroscopy offers many advantages (high sensitivity, rapidity and ease of implementation) over conventional techniques such as affinity and size exclusion chromatography, dialysis and ultrafiltration. By measuring the quenching of the HSA intrinsic fluorescence, the accessibility of quenchers to the fluorophore groups of HSA can be estimated. This information can help to predict the binding mechanisms of drugs. Other experimental techniques (such as optical absorption and EPR spectroscopy), and computational methods (such as molecular docking and MD simulations) can be used to gain insights into the binding location and affinity of various compounds to HSA, and on their competitive association in the presence of other physiological ligands.

Examples of ligands for HSA (left side), structure of the protein (middle) and emission spectra at growing amount of HSA complexes (right).
Examples of ligands for HSA (left side), structure of the protein (middle) and emission spectra at growing amount of HSA complexes (right).

Delivery systems for sustainable antimicrobial protection of plants

The aim is the development of innovative phyto-therapy based on nano-carriers to efficiently reach the target and to amplify the agrochemical effect. A new Spray-drying synthesis was exploited to produce pure and thermodynamically stable nano-crystals with high quantitative rate. The synthetized nano-crystals have optimal drugs loading efficiency and biocompatible nature. The potential targeting in infected plants was supported by phytotoxic and localization assay on model plants. The nano-crystals showed good mobility in xylem vessels, without any effect on the plant tissues nor uptake by the vegetable cells. In particular this nanotechnology strategy was applied to control the Xylella Fastidiosa (Xf) infection that causes the Olive Quick Decline Syndrome, denoted CoDiRO, an high impact disease observed in Salento (research activities in collaboration with the Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection). The phyto-therapy design is supported by the research and development of new diagnostic protocols based on untargeted metabolomics approach trough advanced mass spectrometry.

TEM image of CaCO3 nano-crystals obtained by Spray Dryer process (A). Confocal image of xylema vessels of model plant that was exposed to nano-crystals (B); the white arrows indicate the xylematic flux direction. TEM image of Xylella fastidiosa cells exposed to nano-crystals (C); the red arrow indicates the internalized crystal and the blue one shows the drastic alteration of bacteria wall structure.

Plasma deposition of drug delivery coatings

Plasma-based strategies can be used to produce drug delivery coatings in order to reduce bacteria attachment and proliferation and/or to stimulate specific cell-tissue responses. Due to the variety of devices, implants, materials in general, as well as causative bacteria and field of application, plasma-assisted strategies can be tailored to specific product needs. Composite coatings containing inorganic (metals and metal oxides) or organic (synthetic drugs and biomolecules) agents dispersed in an organic matrix can be deposited in one step, and used for drug delivery applications. When a barrier film is deposited on top of such coatings, the direct contact between the drug and the medium is hampered and the release is reduced. To control the rate of release over time, a further plasma deposition of a barrier film can be performed to slow down the diffusion of the antimicrobial agent in the water media. Low pressure and atmospheric pressure plasmas can be used for this purpose.

Plasma sputter deposition of silver containing drug-delivery coatings. Top: picture of a plasma discharge and sketch of the plasma process aimed at obtaining a silver containing coating coated by a barrier film to control drug delivery rate; middle: TEM  images of 1% and 3% of silver containing coatings; bottom: SEM picture of Staphylococcus epidermis grown on a plasma deposited coating without silver (bottom-left) and with silver and barrier coating (bottom-right)
Plasma sputter deposition of silver containing drug-delivery coatings. Top: picture of a plasma discharge and sketch of the plasma process aimed at obtaining a silver containing coating coated by a barrier film to control drug delivery rate; middle: TEM images of 1% and 3% of silver containing coatings; bottom: SEM picture of Staphylococcus epidermis grown on a plasma deposited coating without silver (bottom-left) and with silver and barrier coating (bottom-right)

Facilities & Labs

Bio Lab @ Lecce

Characterization Lab @ Lecce

Micro/nano fabrication @ Rende

Structural and morphological characterizations lab @ Rende

Bio Lab @ Rende

Bio Lab @ URT Bari

People

Stefano_LeporattiStefano

Leporatti

CNR Researcher

Laura_BlasiLaura

Blasi

CNR Researcher

Barbara_CorteseBarbara

Cortese

CNR Researcher

Giuseppe_CiccarellaGiuseppe

Ciccarella

Associate Professor

Ilaria_PalamaIlaria E.

Palamà

CNR Researcher

Alessandra_QuartaAlessandra

Quarta

CNR Researcher

Antonella_ZacheoAntonella

Zacheo

Associate Researcher

Viso_UomoAndrea

Ragusa

Associate Researcher

Viso_donnaAlessandra

Crispini

Associate Professor

fabio_palumbor150Fabio

Palumbo

CNR Researcher

Eloisa_SardellaEloisa

Sardella

CNR Researcher

Bruno_RizzutiBruno

Rizzuti

CNR Researcher

Ferdinanda_AnnesiFerdinanda

Annesi

CNR Technician

Alfredo_PaneAlfredo

Pane

CNR Technician

Antonio_deLucaAntonio

De Luca

Associate Professor

francesca BaldassarreFrancesca

Baldassarre

Associate PostDoc

Viso_donnaCinzia

Citti

Associate PostDoc

Roberto_bartolinoRoberto

Bartolino

Associate Professor

Luciano_DeSioLuciano

De Sio

Associate PostDoc

Roberto_GristinaRoberto

Gristina

CNR Researcher

Pietro-FaviaPietro

Favia

Associate Professor

Loredana_RicciardiLoredana

Ricciardi

CNR PostDoc

Massimo_LaDedaMassimo

La Deda

Associate Professor

Viviana_VergaroViviana

Vergaro

Associate PostDoc

Viso_UomoGiuseppe

Cannazza

Associate Professor

Publications

  1. L. Ricciardi, S. Pirillo, D. Pucci, M. La Deda, Emission solvatochromic behavior of a pentacoordinated Zn(II) complex: A viable tool for studying the metallodrug-protein interaction, Journal of Luminescence, 151, 138-142, (2014), ISSN: 0022-2313; doi: 10.1016/j.jlumin.2014.02.020
  2. M. Mortato, S. Argentiere, G.L. De Gregorio, G. Gigli, L. Blasi, Enzyme-responsive multifunctional surfaces for controlled uptake/release of (bio)molecules, Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces, 123, 89-95, (2014) ISSN: 0927-7765; doi: 10.1016/j.colsurfb.2014.08.034
  3. I.E. Palamà, B. Cortese, S. D’Amone, G. Gigli, mRNA delivery using non-viral PCL nanoparticles, Biomaterials Science, 3, 144-151, (2015), ISSN: 2047-4830; doi: 10.1039/c4bm00242c
  4. I.E. Palamà, A.M.L. Coluccia, G. Gigli, Uptake of Imatinib-loaded polyelectrolyte nanocomplexes by BCR-ABL+ cells: a long-acting drug delivery strategy for targeting oncoprotein activity, Nanomedicine, 9 (14), 2087-2098, (2014), ISSN: 1743-5889; doi: 10.2217/NNM.13.147
  5. L. del Mercato, M. M. Ferraro, F. Baldassarre, S. Mancarella, V. Greco, R. Rinaldi, S. Leporatti, Biological Applications of LbL Multilayer Capsules: From Drug Delivery to Sensing, Advances Colloids and Interface Science, 207, 139–154, (2014), ISSN: 0001-8686; doi: 10.1016/j.cis.2014.02.014 (Invited Review, Special Issue Helmuth Mohwald)
  6. I.E. Palamà, B. Cortese, S. D’Amone, V. Arcadio, G. Gigli, Couple delivery of Imatinib Mesylate and Doxorubicin with nanoscaled polymeric vectors for a sustained downregulation of BCR-ABL in Chronic Myeloid Leukemia, Biomaterials Science, 3, 361-372, (2015), ISSN: 2047-4830; doi: 10.1039/c4bm00289j
  7. A. Quarta, D. Bernareggi, F. Benigni, E. Luison, G. Nano, S. Nitti, C. Cesta, L. Di Ciccio, S. Canevari, T. Pellegrino, M. Figini, Targeting FR-expressing cells in ovarian cancer with Fab-functionalized nanoparticles: a full study to provide the proof of principle from in vitro to in vivo, Nanoscale, 7 (6) 2336-2351, (2015), ISSN: 2040-3364; doi: 10.1039/c4nr04426f
  8. C. Dionisi, N. A.N. Hanafy, C. Nobile, M. L. de Giorgi, R. Rinaldi, S. Casciaro, Y. M. Lvov, S. Leporatti, Halloysite Clay Nanotubes as Carriers for Curcumin: Characterization and Application, IEEE Transactions On Nanotechnology, 15, 720-724, (2016), ISSN: 1536125X; doi: 10.1109/TNANO.2016.2524072.
  9. S. Mancarella, V. Greco, F. Baldassarre, D. Vergara, M. Maffia, S. Leporatti, Polymer-coated Magnetic Nanopartocles for Curcumin Delivery to Cancer Cells, Biosci, 15 (10), 1365-1374, (2015), ISSN: 1616-5187; doi: 10.1002/mabi.201500142. (Awarded by Frontispiece Colour Issue)
  10. A. Zacheo, A. Quarta, A. Zizzari, A. G. Monteduro, G. Maruccio, V. Arima, G. Gigli, One step preparation of quantum dot-embedded lipid nanovesicles by a microfluidic device, RSC Advances, 5, 98576-98582, (2015), ISSN: 2046-2069; doi: 10.1039/c5ra18862h
  11. F. Palumbo, G. Camporeale, Y.W. Yang, J. S. Wu, E. Sardella, G. Dilecce, C. D. Calvano, L. Quintieri, L. Caputo, F. Baruzzi, P. Favia Direct deposition of Lysozyme embedded Bio-composite Thin films, Plasma Processes and Polymers 12-11, 1302-1310 (2015), ISSN: 1612-8869; doi: 10.1002/ppap.201500039
  12. L. De Sio, G. Caracciolo, F. Annesi, T. Placido, D. Pozzi, R. Comparelli, A. Pane, L. Curri, A. Agostiano, R. Bartolino, Plasmonics Meets Biology through Optics Nanomaterials, ISSN: 20794991; doi:10.3390/nano50x000x (2015)
  13. L. De Sio, G. Caracciolo, T. Placido, D. Pozzi, R. Comparelli, F. Annesi, M. L. Curri, A. Agostiano, R. Bartolino, Applications of nanomaterials in modern medicine, Rendiconti Lincei. Scienze Fisiche e Naturali ISSN: 20374631; doi: 10.1007/s12210-015-0400-y (2015).
  14. L. De Sio, F. Annesi, T. Placido, R. Comparelli, V. Bruno, A. Pane, G. Palermo, L. Curri, C. Umeton, R. Bartolino Templating gold nanorods with liquid crystalline DNA J. Optics 17, 025001 (2015), ISSN: 2040-8978; doi: 10.1088/2040-8978/17/2/025001
  15. B. Rizzuti, R. Bartucci, L. Sportelli, R. Guzzi, Fatty acid binding into the highest affinity site of human serum albumin observed in molecular dynamics simulation, Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics, 579, 18-25 (2015), ISSN: 0003-9861; doi: 10.1016/j.abb.2015.05.018
  16. M. Pantusa, R. Bartucci, B. Rizzuti, Stability of trans-resveratrol associated with transport proteins, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 62, 4384-4391 (2014), ISSN: 0021-8561; doi: 10.1021/jf405584a
  17. E. Sardella, F. Palumbo, G. Camporeale, P. Favia, Non-Equilibrium Plasma Processing for the Preparation of Antibacterial Surfaces; Materials 9(7), 515 (2016) ISSN: 1996-1944; doi:10.3390/ma9070515.
  18. V. Vergaro, P. Papadia, S. Leporatti, S. De Pascali, F. P. Fanizzi, G. Ciccarella Synthesis of biocompatible polymeric nano-capsules based on calcium carbonate: A potential cisplatin delivery system. Journal Of Inorganic Biochemistry, 153, 284-292, (2015). ISSN: 0162-0134; DOI: 10.1016/j.jinorgbio.2015.10.014.
  19. F. Baldassarre, F. Foglietta, V. Vergaro, N. Barbero, A. L. Capodilupo, L. Serpe, S. Visentin, A. Tepore, G. Ciccarella Photodynamic activity of thiophene-derived lysosome-specific dyes. Journal Of Photochemistry And Photobiology B-Biology, 158, 16-22, (2016) ISSN: 1011-1344; DOI: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2016.02.013.

Other selected Publications

  1. S. Argentiere, L. Blasi, G. Morello, G. Gigli, A novel pH-responsive nanogel for the controlled uptake and release of hydrophobic and cationic solutes, Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 115, 16347-16353, (2011), ISSN: 1932-7447; doi: 10.1021/jp204954a
  2. S. Deka, A. Quarta, R. Di Corato, A. Riedinger, R. Cingolani, T. Pellegrino, Magnetic nanobeads decorated by thermo-responsive PNIPAM shell as medical platforms for the efficient delivery of doxorubicin to tumor cells, Nanoscale, 3 (2), 619-629 (2011), ISSN: 2040-3364; doi: 10.1039/c0nr00570c
  3. V. Vergaro, E. Abdullayev, Y.M. Lvov, A. Zeitoun, R. Cingolani, R. Rinaldi, S. Leporatti, Cytocompatibility and Uptake of Halloysite Clay Nanotubes, Biomacromolecules, 11, 820–826, (2010), ISSN: 1525-7797; doi: 10.1021/bm9014446 (One of Most Cited Papers in Biomacromolecules in 2011, Highly Cited Paper, according to Web of Science Thompson Reuters)
  4. S. Argentiere, L. Blasi, G. Ciccarella, A. Cazzato, G. Barbarella, R. Cingolani, G. Gigli, Smart surfaces for pH controlled cell staining, Soft Matter, 5, 4101-4103, (2009), ISSN: 1744-683X; doi: 10.1039/b914277k
  5. S. Deka, A. Quarta, R. Di Corato, A. Falqui, L. Manna, R. Cingolani, T. Pellegrino, Acidic pH-responsive nanogels as smart cargo systems for the simultaneous loading and release of short oligonucleotides and magnetic nanoparticles, Langmuir, 26 (12), 10315-10324, (2010), ISSN: 0743-7463; doi: 10.1021/la1004819
  6. I.E. Palamà, S. Leporatti, E. de Luca, N. Di Renzo, M. Maffia, C. Gambacorti-Passerini, R. Rinaldi, G. Gigli, R. Cingolani, A.M.L. Coluccia, Imatinib-Loaded Polyelectrolyte Microcapsules for Sustained Targeting of Bcr- Abl+ Leukemia Stem Cells, Nanomedicine Future Medicine Ltd, 5(3), 419-431 (2010), ISSN: 1743-5889; doi: 10.2217/NNM.10.8
  7. Vergaro, F. Scarlino, C. Bellomo, R. Rinaldi, D. Vergara, M. Maffia, F. Baldassarre, G. Giannelli X. Zhang, Y. M. Lvov and S. Leporatti, Drug-loaded polyelectrolyte microcapsules for sustained targeting of cancer cells, Advanced Drug Delivery Review, 63, 847-864, (2011), ISSN: 0169-409X; doi: 10.1016/j.addr.2011.05.007 (Invited Review)
  8. F. Baldassarre, V. Vergaro, F. Scarlino, F. De Santis, G. Lucarelli, A. della Torre, G. Ciccarella, R. Rinaldi, G. Giannelli, S. Leporatti, Polyelectrolyte Capsules as Carriers for Growth Factor Inhibitor Delivery to Hepatocellular Carcinoma, Macromol Biosci, 12, 656-665 (2012), ISSN: 1616-5187; doi: 10.1002/mabi.201100457
  9. V. Vergaro, Y.M. Lvov, S. Leporatti, Halloysite Clay Nanotubes for Resveratrol Delivery to Cancer Cells, Biosci., 12 (9), 1265-1271, (2012), ISSN: 1616-5187; doi: 10.1002/mabi.201200121
  10. M. Kastellorizios, G.P.A.K. Michanetzis, B. R. Pistillo, S. Mourtas, P. Klepetsanis, E. Sardella, R. d’Agostino, Y. F. Missirlis, S. G. Antimisiaris Haemocompatibility improvement of metallic surfaces by covalent immobilization of heparin-liposomes, Int. J. Pharm. 2012, 432-1, 91-98; doi: 10.4236/jbnb.2013.44A004

Patents

Cancer Therapy with Silver Nanoparticles. E. Palamà, M. Pollini, F. Paladini, G. Accorsi, A. Sannino and G. Gigli. US 4182.3000. 2013 and WO 3000. 2014.

Abstract: A novel approach in cancer therapy based on the cytotoxic effect of silver nanoparticles on cancer cells, without any deleterious effect on normal cells, has been developed.

 

Process for the production by plasma of nanometric thickness coatings allowing controlled release of silver ions of other elements, or of molecules of biomedical interest, from solid products, and products thus coated, R. D’agostino, P. Favia, F. Fracassi, E. Sardella, C. Costagliola, A. Mangone. Patent WO2013021409-A1: E. Sardella, P. Favia et al. WO2013021409 (2013)

Abstract: Process for the production by plasmochemical deposition of a film having a nanometric thickness, optionally multilayered, permitting carrying out in a controlled, uniform and long lasting way, release of substances of interest in a surrounding medium containing liquids, from a substrate including the substance to be released as micro/nano particles, or from a layer deposited on the substrate including the substance to be released as micro/nano particles, or from a layer of the substance to be released deposited on the substrate, or from a substrate that is the substance to be released optionally in the form of particles. The substances to be released can be metals, compounds having anti-bacterial properties, biologically active molecules such as drugs, hormones, vegetable extracts, peptides, lipids, protides and glucides. The layer with the substance to be released, be it organic or inorganic, is obtained by plasmochemical deposition optionally having a structure similar to polyethylene oxide (PEO) or polyethylene glycol (PEG), called PEO-like polymers, constituted, in a variable percentage da ethylene oxide units (-CH2CH2O-, EO); barrier film is obtained by depositing by plasma at least one organic or inorganic layer, optionally with a PEO-like structure, wherein chemical composition, degree of crosslinking and thickness are adjustable by the plasmo chemical deposition process parameters, and allow to adjust the release of the active substance according to specific needs. The structures on which the above said films can be deposited are: medical-surgical devices, common handworks, structures known as scaffolds, and the above defined substances to be released themselves. The invention also relates to medical-surgical devices, common handworks and scaffolds coated by a substrate and barrier layer, as well as to biologically active substances coated by at least one barrier layer.

 

Synthesis of nano-sized CaCO3 particles by spray dryer. Ciccarella, V. Vergaro. EP2796412 (A1) (2013).

Abstract: Method for preparing calcium carbonate comprising the steps of mixing an aqueous solution of NaHCO3 and an aqueous solution of CaCl2 , then atomizing them in a pre-heated air flow, thereby obtaining calcium carbonate in powder form and sodium chloride. The calcium carbonate obtained comprises nanoparticles smaller than 100 nm.

Project

  1. NABIDIT – NAno-BIotecnologie per DIagnostica e sviluppo di Terapie innovative; Regional project APQ – Reti di Laboratori Pubblici di Ricerca (2010-2012)
  2. MAGNIFYCO – Magnetic nanocontainers for combined hyperthermia and controlled drug release; Project ID: 228622 – FP7-NMP (2009-2013)
  3. IT-LIVER – Strategy to Inhibit TGF-b In Liver Disease; FP7 ITN-Marie Curie (2012-2016).
  4. Nanocarriers for Cancer Therapy; Bilaterale Ministero Affari Esteri (2008-2011).
  5. MAAT – Nanotecnologie molecolari per la salute dell’uomo e dell’ambiente; Pon MIUR, PON02_00563_3316357 (2012-2015)
  6. LIPP – Laboratorio di ricerca Industriale Pugliese dei Plasmi; Regional project APQ – Reti di Laboratori Pubblici di Ricerca (2010-2012)
  7. RINOVATIS – Rigenerazione di tessuti nervosi ed osteocartilaginei mediante innovativi approcci di Tissue Engineering, PON MIUR PON02_00563_3448479, (2013-2015)

Latest News

Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

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Zeiss Microscopy Technology and Complete Correlative Workflow

Lecce, Italy, 2017 Wednesday July 19th 

CNR NANOTEC @ Lecce, Aula Seminari – pal. G, Piano Terra

Program - PDF

Zeiss, as microscopy technology leader, provides the unique complete imaging solution ranging from light, confocal, electron, ion and Xray modalities with a complete and straightforward correlative workflow. An overview of different technologies will be presented with a special focus on X-Rray microscopy.

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MCS 2017

International Workshop on Micropropulsion and CubeSats

Bari, Italy, 26 - 27 June 2017

Program - MSC2017

This narrow-field, invited-only meeting is the first attempt to bring together the Materials and Micropropulsion communities with a view to contribute to the development of the Global Materials and Micropropulsion Roadmap, and set such meetings to a regular basis.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Workshop annuale d'Istituto - II ed.

Cetraro (CS), 3 -5 maggio 2017

Il programma completo dell'evento - download

La tre giorni dedicata ai risultati di ricerca conseguiti e alle strategie scientifiche da intraprendere nel prossimo futuro.