Natural Compounds for New Diagnostic Applications and New Active Principles

People: Cinzia Forni, Laura Bruno, Roberta Congestri, Antonella CaniniStefano Rufini 

  • Production of nutraceutics with antitumor activity in agronomic species. Extraction, purification and identification of secondary metabolites from plant species used in diet and determination of their antitumor activity. Studies of molecular mechanisms involved in the response of cancer cells to the treatment with nutraceutics (Cinzia Forni)
  • Microalgal and cyanobacterial biomass production for application in nutra-and pharmaceutics, food and feed additives, antioxidant, antiviral and antinflammatory algal compound. Algal pigments as markers in innovative diagnostic applications Diatom frustule photonics for random lasing and dye trapping applications. (Laura Bruno, Roberta Congestri)
  • Selected diatom biomass in photobioreactors for extraction of biosilica (siliceous frustules) and exopolymeric substances (EPS) for innovative application in tissue regeneration (scaffolding) and drug delivery. (Roberta Congestri)
  • Nutraceutics and foods: enhancement of bioactive compounds, food and health security. Mechanisms involved in the antitumor response in in vitro and in vivo models. (Antonella Canini)
  • Identification and use of toxins for for the development of new diagnostic strategies of dislipidosi human. Many disorder such as Gaucher, Niemann-­‐Pick and Tay Sachs disease, are characterized by an incorrect lipid metabolism that involve the accumulation of different lipid classes in the endo-­‐lysosomal compartment. The analysis of these lipid classes covers a great importance for the diagnosis but is limited by the lack of adequate molecular probes able to distinguish the lipids in whole cells. In this context, some protein toxins represent unique tools to recognize specifically the lipids not only in vitro but also in living cells. (Stefano Rufini)