Delia Mezzanzanica

Delia Mezzanzanica
Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori di Milano | Istituto Tumori di Milano · Dipartimento di Ricerca

Doctor of Philosophy

About

181
Publications
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Introduction
I have extensive experience in immunology, biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology applied to the field of oncology. My research mainly focus on epithelial ovarian cancer with particular interest in translational research aimed at: - targeting aberrant cellular metabolism to affect tumor growth - identification of markers/signaling pathways associated to disease persistence/early relapse - identification of survival signaling pathways responsible for apoptosis resistance

Publications

Publications (181)
Article
Background The detection of homologous recombination deficiency (HRD) can identify patients who are more responsive to platinum and poly ADP ribose polymerase inhibitors (PARPi). MyChoice CDx (Myriad) is the most used HRD test in ovarian cancer (OC). However, some limitations of commercial tests exist, because of the high rate of inconclusive resul...
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To find prognostic factors for advanced ovarian cancer patients undergoing first-line therapy with carboplatin, paclitaxel and bevacizumab, we investigated the expression of a disintegrin and metalloprotease 17 (ADAM17) in cancer tissues. ADAM17 has been involved in ovarian cancer development, progression and cell resistance to cisplatin. Tissue mi...
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Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) remains the most lethal gynecological cancer and development of chemo-resistance is a major factor in disease relapse. Homologous recombination (HR) is a critical pathway for DNA double strand break repair and its deficiency is associated to a better response to DNA damage-inducing agents. Strategies to inhibit HR-me...
Article
Background Poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase inhibitors have transformed the management landscape for patients with ovarian cancer, demonstrating remarkable improvements in progression-free survival and overall survival. Unfortunately, most relapses are due to an acquired mechanism of resistance to these agents. We hypothesize that secondary cytoreducti...
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Aim Early-stage epithelial ovarian cancer (eEOC) patients have a generally favorable prognosis but unpredictable recurrence. Accurate prediction of risk of relapse is still a major concern, essentially to avoid overtreatment. Our robust tissue-based miRNA signature named MiROvaR, predicting early EOC recurrence in mostly advanced-stage EOC patients...
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Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) remains the second most common cause of gynecological cancer deaths. To improve patients’ outcomes, we still need reliable biomarkers of early relapse, of which external independent validation is a crucial process. Our previously established prognostic signature, MiROvaR, including 35 microRNAs (miRNA) able to strati...
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Background Choline kinase-α (ChoKα/ CHKA ) overexpression and hyper-activation sustain altered choline metabolism conferring the cholinic phenotype to epithelial ovarian cancer (OC), the most lethal gynecological tumor. We previously proved that CHKA down-modulation reduced OC cell aggressiveness and increased sensitivity to in vitro chemotherapeut...
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Objective: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused rapid and drastic changes in cancer management. The Italian Society of Gynecology and Obstetrics (SIGO), and the Multicenter Italian Trials in Ovarian cancer and gynecologic malignancies (MITO) promoted a national survey aiming to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 on clinical activity of gyne...
Conference Paper
Objective Several attempts are done in order to control COVID-19 and promote a fair allocation of resources during the outbreak. The Italian society of obstetrics and gynecologist (SIGO), and the Multicenter Italian Trials in Ovarian cancer and gynecologic malignancies (MITO) are promoting research activities in the field of gynecologic oncology on...
Article
In this work, we evaluated, for the first time, the antitumor effect of cannabidiol (CBD) as monotherapy and in combination with conventional chemotherapeutics in ovarian cancer and developed PLGA-microparticles as CBD carriers to optimize its anticancer activity. Spherical microparticles, with a mean particle size around 25 µm and high entrapment...
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Ovarian cancer is the most lethal gynecological cancer, and despite years of research, with the exception of a BRCA mutation driving the use of PARP inhibitors, no new prognostic/predictive biomarkers are clinically available. Improvement in biomarker selection and validation may derive from the systematic inclusion of translational analyses into t...
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T-cell-based immunotherapy strategies have profoundly improved the clinical management of several solid tumors and hematological malignancies. A recently developed and promising immunotherapy approach is to redirect polyclonal MHC-unrestricted T lymphocytes toward cancer cells by bispecific antibodies (bsAbs) that engage the CD3 complex and a tumor...
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High grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) retains high molecular heterogeneity and genomic instability, which currently limit the treatment opportunities. HGSOC patients receiving complete cytoreduction (R0) at primary surgery and platinum-based therapy may unevenly experience early disease relapse, in spite of their clinically favorable prognosis....
Conference Paper
Objectives About 30% of Epithelial Ovarian Cancer (EOC) patients present with early-stage disease (FIGO stage I–II). However, in spite of the generally favourable prognosis, eEOC have heterogeneous risk of relapse, ranging from 13% to over 40% in various reports. We previously identified 35 miRNAs that predicted risk of progression or relapse in ad...
Article
The identification of effective biomarkers for early diagnosis, prognosis, and response to treatments remains a challenge in ovarian cancer (OC) research. Here, we present an unbiased high-throughput approach to profile ascitic fluid autoantibodies in order to obtain a tumor-specific antigen signature in OC. We first reported the reactivity of immu...
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In the era of personalized medicine, the introduction of translational studies in clinical trials has substantially increased their costs, but provides the possibility of improving the productivity of trials with a better selection of recruited patients. With the overall goal of creating a roadmap to improve translational design for future gynecolo...
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RNASET2 is an extracellular ribonuclease endowed with a marked antitumorigenic role in several carcinomas, independent from its catalytic activity. Besides its antitumorigenic role by the recruitment to the tumor mass of immune cells from the monocyte/macrophage lineage, RNASET2 is induced by cellular stress and involved in actin cytoskeleton remod...
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Background: The disruption of E-cadherin-mediated adhesion is considered an important driver of tumor progression. Nevertheless, numerous studies have demonstrated that E-cadherin promotes growth- or invasion-related signaling, contrary to the prevailing notion. During tumor progression, epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) maintains E-cadherin express...
Article
Although several drugs are available to treat recurrences of human epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC), clinical responses often remain short lived and lead to only marginal improvements in patients' survival. One of the new drugs proposed for recurrent platinum‐resistant EOC patients is trabectedin (Trab), a marine‐derived antitumor agent initially is...
Conference Paper
Despite a good response rate to front-line treatment, most of the patients with epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) will eventually develop an incurable state of platinum (Pt)-resistant disease. Pt resistance is a multifactorial event driven by different molecular mechanisms such as increased ability to tolerate or repair DNA lesions, tendency to plast...
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Metabolism is deeply involved in cell behavior and homeostasis maintenance, with metabolites acting as molecular intermediates to modulate cellular functions. In particular, one-carbon metabolism is a key biochemical pathway necessary to provide carbon units required for critical processes, including nucleotide biosynthesis, epigenetic methylation,...
Article
Recombinant human tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) or TRAIL-receptor agonistic monoclonal antibodies promote apoptosis in most cancer cells, and the differential expression of TRAIL-R2 between tumor and normal tissues allows its exploitation as a tumor-associated antigen. The use of these antibodies as anticancer agen...
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Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is an infrequent but highly lethal disease, almost invariably treated with platinum-based therapies. Improving the response to platinum represents a great challenge, since it could significantly impact on patient survival. Here, we report that silencing or pharmacological inhibition of CDK6 increases EOC cell sensiti...
Article
Trabectedin and its analogue lurbinectedin are effective drugs used in the treatment of ovarian cancer. Since the presence of ascites is a frequent event in advanced ovarian cancer we asked the question whether ascites could modify the activity of these compounds against ovarian cancer cells. The cytotoxicity induced by trabectedin or lurbinectedin...
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Antagonizing the oncogenic effects of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) with current anti-HER2 agents has not yet yielded major progress in the treatment of advanced HER2-positive epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). Using preclinical models to explore alternative molecular mechanisms affecting HER2 overexpression and oncogenicity may lea...
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Purpose: In the context of prostate cancer (PCa) imaging, the aim of this study was to optimize (in vitro) the specificity and assess preclinically (in vivo) the tumor targeting properties of the 123I-scFvD2B antibody specific for prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA). Experimental design: The 123I-labeling conditions of the antibody fragmen...
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Epithelial ovarian cancer remains the leading cause of death from gynecologic malignancy among women in developed countries. New therapeutic strategies evaluated with relevant preclinical models are urgently needed to improve survival rates. Here, we have assessed the effect of pantethine on tumor growth and metabolism using magnetic resonance imag...
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Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is the deadliest tumor among gynecological cancer in the industrialized countries. The EOC incidence and mortality have remained unchanged over the last 30 years, despite the progress in diagnosis and treatment. In order to develop novel and more effective therapeutic approaches, the molecular mechanisms involved in...
Article
Background: Risk of relapse or progression remains high in the treatment of most patients with epithelial ovarian cancer, and development of a molecular predictor could be a valuable tool for stratification of patients by risk. We aimed to develop a microRNA (miRNA)-based molecular classifier that can predict risk of progression or relapse in pati...
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Epithelial ovarian carcinoma (EOC) is the gynecological malignancy with the highest death rate, characterized by frequent relapse and onset of drug resistance. Disease diagnosis and therapeutic follow-up could benefit from application of molecular imaging approaches such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and spectroscopy (MRS) able to monitor met...
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Compared to normal differentiated cells, cancer cells require a metabolic reprogramming to support their high proliferation rates and survival. Aberrant choline metabolism is a fairly new metabolic hallmark reflecting the complex reciprocal interactions between oncogenic signaling and cellular metabolism. Alterations of the involved metabolic netwo...
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IL-27 is a member of the IL-12 family that is produced by macrophages and dendritic cells. IL-27 inhibits the growth and invasiveness of different cancers and therefore represents a potential anti-tumor agent. By contrast, it may exert immune-regulatory properties in different biological systems. We reported that IL-27 induces the expression of the...
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Background No biomarker is available to predict prognosis of patients with advanced ovarian cancer (AOC) and guide the choice of chemotherapy. We performed a prospective-retrospective biomarker study within the MITO2 trial on the treatment of AOC. Patients and methods: MITO2 is a randomised multicentre phase 3 trial conducted with 820 AOC patients...
Article
Antibody-based reagents represent a promising strategy as clinical diagnostic tools. Prostate cancer (PCa) is the second-leading cause of death in males in the Western population. There is a presently unmet need for accurate diagnostic tool to localize and define the extent of both primary PCa and occult recurrent disease. One of the most suitable...
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Chemoresistance is a major challenge in cancer treatment. miR-506 is a potent inhibitor of the epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), which is also associated with chemoresistance. We characterized the role of miR-506 in chemotherapy response in high-grade serous ovarian cancers. We used Kaplan-Meier and log-rank methods to analyze the relatio...
Article
MiRNAs emerge as important regulators of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). The Best known EMT regulatory miRNAs are targeting the transcriptional repressors of E-cadherin (E-cad). We identified miR-506 as a key EMT inhibitor through directly targeting the E-cad transcriptional repressor, SNAI2. Our recent studies showed that miR-506 simul...
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Epithelial Ovarian Cancer (EOC) “cholinic phenotype”, characterized by increased intracellular phosphocholine content sustained by over-expression/activity of choline kinase-alpha (ChoKα/CHKA), is a metabolic cellular reprogramming involved in chemoresistance with still unknown mechanisms. By stable CHKA silencing and global metabolic profiling her...
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In this issue of the Chinese Journal of Cancer, European, American, and Chinese experts review the current management and future perspectives of epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC), the leading cause of gynecological cancer deaths. Although major advances have been made in understanding the cellular and molecular biology of this highly heterogeneous ma...
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Metastasis is the main cause of cancer mortality. One of the initiating events of cancer metastasis of epithelial tumors is epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), during which cells dedifferentiate from a relatively rigid cell structure/morphology to a flexible and changeable structure/morphology often associated with mesenchymal cells. The pr...
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Ovarian and uterine carcinosarcoma (CS) are characterized by their aggressive clinical behavior and poor prognosis. We evaluated the efficacy of trastuzumab-emtansine (T-DM1), against primary HER2 positive and HER2 negative CS cell lines in vitro and in vivo. Eight primary CS cell lines were evaluated for HER2 amplification and protein expression b...