A Caraffa

Università degli Studi di Perugia, Perugia, Umbria, Italy

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Publications (83)254.56 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Serotonin (5-HT) is an important neurotransmitter that acts in both central and peripheral nervous system, and has an impact on cell proliferation, migration and apoptosis. 5HT exerts its effects via several receptors. Treatment with anti-5-HT receptors diminish the severity of contact allergy in experimental animals, an effect mediated by mast cells; while an agonist reduces the stress level and relieves pruritus in patients with atopic dermatitis. Mast cells are important for both innate and adaptive immunity and they are activated by cross-linking of FceRI molecules, which are involved in the binding of multivalent antigens to the attached IgE molecules, resulting in a variety of responses including the immediate release of potent inflammatory mediators. Serotonin is present in murine mucosal mast cells and some authors reported that human mast cells may also contain serotonin, especially in subjects with mastocytosis. Here we report the interrelationship between mast cells, serotonin and its receptor inhibitor.
    Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents 07/2014; 28(3):377-80. · 5.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Microglia derive from mononuclear myeloid progenitors and are a major glial complement of the central nervous system. When microglia are activated they secrete inflammatory cytokines and toxic mediators which amplify the inflammatory response. In addition, the microglia inflammatory products are implicated in the neuronal destruction usually observed in various neurodegenerative diseases. Microglia cells express corticotropin releasing hormone (CRH) receptors, and activation of microglia by CRH releases bioactive molecules which have a biological effect in the brain and regulate several neurological diseases. CRH plays a pivotal role in stress responses and is a key mediator of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical system. CRH is expressed in human mast cells, leading to autocrine effects and participates in inflammatory response together with neuropeptides, and stimulates mast cells. IL-33-activated mast cells release vascular endothelial growth factor in response to CRH and act synergistically to increase vascular permeability. CRH also up-regulates IL-18 expression by increasing intracellular reactive oxygen in microglia cells. Here we report the relationship between CRH, microglia and mental disorders.
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 07/2014; 27(2):163-7. · 2.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mast cells (MCs) derive from a distinct precursor in the bone marrow and are predominantly found in tissues at the interface between the host and the external environment where they can secrete mediators without overt degranulation. Mast cells mature under local tissue microenvironmental factors and are necessary for the development of allergic reactions, through crosslinking of their surface receptors for IgE (FcεRI), leading to degranulation and the release of vasoactive, pro-inflammatory and nociceptive mediators that include histamine, pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines and proteolytic enzymes. Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease characterized by inflammatory demylination within the central nervous system. MCs are involved in the pathogenesis of MS by generating various vasoactive mediators and cytokines and participate in the destruction of the myelin sheath and the neuronal cells. The process of the development of demyelinating plaques in MS is probably linked with the rupture of the blood-brain barrier by MC products. The effects of natalizumab, which is a very effective drug in reducing the annualized relapse rate and other relapse-based endpoints, are discussed. Here, we report the relationship between MCs and MS.
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 07/2014; 27(3):331-335. · 2.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Human mast cells (first described in 1879 by Paul Ehrlich) develop from committed precursors in the bone marrow expressing the differentiation marker CD34+ and distinct from the three other myeloid cells. Mast cells are present in various tissues especially near blood vessels, epithelia and nerves and they are activated by cross-linking of FcεRI, but also by a number of neuropeptides. NGF mediates a number of inflammatory and autoimmune states in conjunction with an increased accumulation of mast cells which appear to be involved in neuroimmune interactions and tissue inflammation. Here we report some relationships between mast cells and nerve growth factor (NGF).
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 07/2014; 28(2):177-81. · 2.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To compare the blood loss and the blood transfusion between a control group and a group of patients following either a local administration of tranexamic acid or a mechanical post-operative knee flexion, a controlled randomized study was performed. Sixty patients affected by primary knee osteoarthritis and candidates to receive a primary unilateral total knee arthroplasty were enrolled in a prospective, randomized, controlled study. Exclusion criteria were the following: tranexamic acid allergy, the use of pharmacological anticoagulant therapy, previous knee surgery and renal failure. For each patient, the following parameters were investigated: the blood loss volume, the haemoglobin and haematocrit concentrations and the blood transfusion needs. Compared to the control group, the administration of systemic tranexamic acid significantly reduces (p < 0.05) both the blood loss (average reduction 39.8 %) and the blood transfusion needs (64 %). Furthermore, the tranexamic acid group shows a significant reduction (p < 0.05) compared to the knee flexion group of the blood loss (average reduction 31.8 %) and the transfusion needs (65 %). However, even if the knee flexion technique slightly reduces the blood loss (average reduction 11.6 %) compared to the control group, this difference is not statistically significant (n.s.). Moreover, this treatment did not reduce the transfusion needs compared to the control group (n.s.). Incidence of complications was not influenced by any of the treatments. The use of tranexamic acid compared to knee flexion and to control group significantly reduces blood loss and transfusion needs, without wound complications or symptomatic deep vein thrombosis. Prospective therapeutic study, Level I.
    Knee Surgery Sports Traumatology Arthroscopy 09/2013; · 2.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Inflammation is involved in increasing number of diseases necessitating the development of new, effective and safe treatments. Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) have been helpful in many instances, but they only inhibit cyclooxygenase (COX), but not the generation or actions of cytokines. Instead, some natural flavonoids have multiple anti-inflammatory effects, including COX inhibition, and a much safer profile. Increasing evidence indicates that inflammation plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of many diseases that also involve mast cells. Consequently, the need for new, effective and safe anti-inflammatory drugs is all the more urgent. Corticosteroids are quite potent, but have many adverse effects such as increased risk of infections, osteoporosis, glaucoma and depression. Biological agents such anti-TNF are useful in certain conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis, but has been associated with increased risk of infection and leukemia.
    Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents 01/2013; 27(1):1-7. · 5.18 Impact Factor
  • European Journal of Inflammation 01/2013; 11(3):609-614. · 5.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mast cells are granulated hematopoietic cells derived from stem cells that reside in nearly all tissues and are involved in protection of a host from bacterial infection with a protective and pathogenic activity. Mast cells are important for both innate and adaptive immunity in tissues which are in close contact with the environment. These cells express proinflammatory cytokines such as IL-1, IL-6, IL-8 and tumor necrosis factor which are necessary for innate immunity. Mast cells also produce interleukin-9 and enhance mast cell expression of several cytokines including IL-1beta, IL-5, IL-6, IL-9 and IL-13. In addition, IL-9 can induce mast cell production of TGF-beta which can have proinflammatory downstream effects. IL-9 can function as either a positive or a negative regulator of immune responses and can have a detrimental role in allergy and autoimmunity. Furthermore, IL-9 contributes to disease by promoting mast cell expansion and production of IL-13 which in turn contributes to airway hyperresponsiveness. Here, in this editorial we review the interrelationship between IL-9 and mast cells.
    Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents 07/2012; 26(3):319-325. · 5.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cancer cells invade surrounding tissues and metastasize to distant sites. Diet high in fat is a strong link to, and perhaps causes, a high incidence of tumours. Trans-fatty acid might impair the function and it could be involved in the development of cancer. Cholesterol is also strongly suspected to be involved in the development of tumours, therefore it is important for everyone to eat well, especially for people with cancer to prevent the body tissues from breaking down and helping to rebuild the normal tissue that may have been affected by the treatments. Factors secreted by adipocytes and macrophages such as TNF-alpha and other inflammatory proteins are involved in inflammation in cancer. In addition, MCSF which up-regulates adipocyte tissue is also important for the stimulation of fat cell proliferation and is expressed by human adipocytes. Many cytokines, such as IL-1, IL-6, IL-8, IL-32, IL-33 and MCP-1, are biomarkers for cancer and chronic diseases along with transcription factors NFkB and AP-1; these last two factors are important bioactive substances on the molecular mechanism of the control of genes which in turn affect cellular metabolism. In this paper we revisit the interrelationship between cancer and metabolism.
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 07/2012; 25(3):573-81. · 2.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mast cells are granulated hematopoietic cells derived from stem cells that reside in nearly all tissues and are involved in protection of a host from bacterial infection with a protective and pathogenic activity. Mast cells are important for both innate and adaptive immunity in tissues which are in close contact with the environment. These cells express proinflammatory cytokines such as IL-1, IL-6, IL-8 and tumor necrosis factor which are necessary for innate immunity. Mast cells also produce interleukin-9 and enhance mast cell expression of several cytokines including IL-1beta, IL-5, IL-6, IL-9 and IL-13. In addition, IL-9 can induce mast cell production of TGF-beta which can have proinflammatory downstream effects. IL-9 can function as either a positive or a negative regulator of immune responses and can have a detrimental role in allergy and autoimmunity. Furthermore, IL-9 contributes to disease by promoting mast cell expansion and production of IL-13 which in turn contributes to airway hyperresponsiveness. Here, in this editorial we review the interrelationship between IL-9 and mast cells.
    Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents 06/2012; 26(3):319-326. · 5.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: It has been reported that high levels of cholesterol and triglycerides are associated with increased risk of developing atherosclerosis and shorter life. In fact, vascular endothelial dysfunction occurs during the human aging process. Accumulation of lipids in vascular endothelium activates leukocytes to produce cytokines and chemokines which recruit macrophages. On the other hand, macrophages augment inflammatory response and secrete vascular endothelial growth factor, a key cytokine that mediates angiogenesis and inflammatory response. In addition, hyperlipidaemia is one of the main risk factors for aging, hypertension and diabetes. Here, we review the interrelationship between endothelial cells, high level of cholesterol, and aging.
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 04/2012; 25(2):355-63. · 2.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mast cells play a central role in inflammatory and immediate allergic reactions and are necessary for allergic reactions. Mast cells play a role in the pathophysiology of autoimmune diseases and appear to be especially important in inflamed tissues, because they infiltrate tissues and produce a variety of cytokines. Mast cells are important for both innate and adaptive immunity in tissues that are in close contact with the environment, i.e. the skin, the airways and the lung, and the lining of the intestine. However, there are still many unsolved issues of mast cell functions, including their regulatory mechanism on cell differentiation in bone marrow; for example, the cytokines and transcription factors necessary for their differentiation and expansion, as well as the molecular mechanism underlying basophil migration from the bloodstream to peripheral tissues such as lymph nodes still need to be clarified.
    Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents 04/2012; 26(2):193-201. · 5.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In this study, we investigated whether multipotent (human-bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells [hBM-MSCs]) and pluripotent stem cells (murine-induced pluripotent stem cells [iPSCs] and murine embryonic stem cells [ESCs]) respond to nanocomposite fibrous mats of poly(L-lactic acid) (PLLA) loaded with 1 or 8 wt % of calcium-deficient nanohydroxyapatite (d-HAp). Remarkably, the dispersion of different amounts of d-HAp to PLLA produced a set of materials (PLLA/d-HAp) with similar architectures and tunable mechanical properties. After 3 weeks of culture in the absence of soluble osteogenic factors, we observed the expression of osteogenic markers, including the deposition of bone matrix proteins, in multi/pluripotent cells only grown on PLLA/d-HAp nanocomposites, whereas the osteogenic differentiation was absent on stem-cell-neat PLLA cultures. Interestingly, this phenomenon was confined only in hBM-MSCs, murine iPSCs, and ESCs grown on direct contact with the PLLA/d-HAp mats. Altogether, these results indicate that the osteogenic differentiation effect of these electrospun PLLA/d-HAp nanocomposites was independent of the stem cell type and highlight the direct interaction of stem cell-polymeric nanocomposite and the mechanical properties acquired by the PLLA/d-HAp nanocomposites as key steps for the differentiation process.
    Biomacromolecules 03/2012; 13(5):1350-60. · 5.37 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Interleukin-36 (IL-36) is a pro-inflammatory cytokine which plays an important role in innate and adaptive immunity. IL-36 activates MAPK and NF-kB pathways and is produced by many different cells. This cytokine is a family member of interleukin-1 (IL-1) and plays an important role in the pathophysiology of several diseases. Here we summarise and review the new aspects of this important pro-inflammatory cytokine.
    Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents 01/2012; 26(1):7-14. · 5.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background The effectiveness of prevention programmes in diminishing the incidence of ankle and knee ligament injuries has been established and published in literature but we do not know exactly the real diffusion among athletes. Objective To assess the application of prevention methods. Design Retrospective Survey. Setting Youth sport, amateur, professionals and elite teams. Material and Method Coaches of 176 basketball, handball and volleyball teams (in total 2936 players, 1315 males and 1621 females: average age 15.6 years) in the Umbria region (central Italy) answered an anonymous original questionnaire regarding prevention methods (quantitative evaluation, balance training, landing technique, sport specific movements, video analysis, rapid deceleration and cutting manoeuvre). Results quantitative evaluations are performed in 26% of the teams; video analysis of sport-specific movements and playing situations are used in 51% of the teams to improve performance but not to prevent injuries (assessing at risk situations or reviewing the injuries); balance training with board is performed by 55% of the teams (an additional 10% use the board only during rehabilitation); sport specific at risk movements like rapid deceleration and crosscut maneouver are reproduced during training respectively in 49% and 42% of the teams while correction of jump landing strategies is not applied; 38% of the trainers declare they are aware of and use prevention methods. Conclusions Surveys are a fundamental way to know if the prevention measures are employed. These studies should be performed in every sport and in every country, according also by age, sex and level. The knowledge of basic prevention methods and their use by all the teams is a target that should be rapidly obtained with courses for both trainers and athletes. Moreover these results are helpful in combination with epidemiological data to decide the need of interventions, saving resources.
    British journal of sports medicine 04/2011; 45(4):339. · 3.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Conditions of stress and anxiety have complex interactions with insufficient vitamin intake and malnutrition. This study, based on literature research in Medline, analyzes the inter-relationship between vitamins and stress. This report concerns a number of vitamins that have been receiving much attention in earlier reviews of the literature, for their potential to protect against stress-related events, and focus is placed upon recent findings.
    Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents 01/2011; 25(2):163-8. · 5.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This review examines recent articles on the relationship of cytokines to allergy and inflammation with particular emphasis on interleukin (IL)-4. The objective of this article is therefore to review published studies to identify cytokines consistently involved in allergic inflammation. Proinflammatory cytokines, including IL-4, IL-5, IL-13 and GM-CSF along with TNF-alpha play a role in allergen-induced airway leukocyte recruitment and these cytokines can be generated by T mast cells and other cells. In addition, IL-9, IL-25, IL-33, IL-17, IL-27 and IFN-gamma are deeply involved in the regulation of asthma. Blocking the effect of these proinflammatory cytokines might provide new therapeutic approaches for the control of allergy and inflammation.
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 01/2011; 24(2):305-11. · 2.99 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Orthopedics: Translational Research & Clinical Application. 01/2011; 3(2):87-92.
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    ABSTRACT: Atherosclerosis is an inflammatory disease due to a diet high in saturated fat, hypercholesterolemia, obesity, hypoglycemia, etc. mainly mediated by the infiltration of macrophage and T cells into the vascular wall. Once the endothelial is damaged monocytes penetrate the tissue and are transformed in scavenger cells. Upon stimulation of Th1 cells, a group of cytokines is released and contributes to the inflammatory response of atherosclerotic tissue. When macrophages proliferate they amplify inflammatory response through the secretion of growth factors and cytokines such as TNF and IL-1. In addition, chemokines such as RANTES and other C-C chemokines are generated, and matrix metalloprotinease 9 (MMP-9) are produced by activated monocytes. However, the immune system in atherosclerosis still remains unclear. Here, in this study we revisited the inter-relationship between atherosclerosis and inflammation.
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 01/2011; 24(4):817-25. · 2.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A high level of cholesterol is associated with obesity, cardiovascular diseases and atherosclerosis. Immune response in atherosclerosis is mediated by chemokines which attract monocytes, leading to the innate immune response characterised by the production of cytokines. The immunoregulatory cytokines are an important bridge between innate and adductive immunity. TH1 cytokines are involved as effector T cells in inflammatory response, while TH2 cytokines can be anti-inflammatory such as IL-10 and IL-4. It is well known that statins enhance the production of TH2 cytokines whereas the secretion of TH1 cytokines is suppressed. For this purpose, we studied the significance of anti-inflammatory effect and suppression of inflammation by statins. In this paper we revisited the role of cholesterol and cytokines IL-18, IL-10, IL-12, TNF-α, interferon-γ, and chemokines in inflammatory diseases.
    International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology 01/2011; 24(3):567-81. · 2.99 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

601 Citations
254.56 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1996–2014
    • Università degli Studi di Perugia
      Perugia, Umbria, Italy
  • 2012–2013
    • Università degli Studi G. d'Annunzio Chieti e Pescara
      • Department of Pharmacy
      Chieta, Abruzzo, Italy
  • 2011
    • University of Rome Tor Vergata
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 2010
    • Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
      • Laboratory of Exercise Physiology and Biochemistry
      Thessaloníki, Kentriki Makedonia, Greece
  • 2006
    • Boston University
      • Section of Infectious Diseases
      Boston, MA, United States