P Alò

Sapienza University of Rome, Roma, Latium, Italy

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Publications (58)121.7 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Identification of clones in primary tumors responsible for proliferation, invasion, and metastasis was carried out. Four different aneuploid established cell lines derived from a ductal infiltrating mammary rat tumor induced by 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene were studied for proliferative and growth features in vitro and for tumorigenic and metastatic potential in vivo in nude mice. Clones, named RM1, RM2, RM3, and RM4, were characterized by different proliferative activity. Clone RM1 showed the highest proliferative activity by both tritiated thymidine incorporation and S-phase flow cytometry, followed by clone RM4. Conversely, clones RM2 and RM3 showed a lower proliferation rate. Growth-promoting activity, tested on 3T3 Swiss cells, was high in all clones, although RM1 showed significantly lower growth factors—releasing activity. Nude mice tumorigenesis demonstrated a strong tumor induction of line RM1 (100% of the mice after 47±7 d) and a slightly lower tumor induction of line RM4 (70% of the mice after 69±9 d). Line RM3 showed tumor induction in 40% of the mice after 186±16 d. Lines RM2 showed no tumor induction. Metastasis occurred in mice treated with line RM1 only. Therefore, tumorigenesis and metastasis correlate with proliferation but not with the release of growth factors. In conclusion, flow cytometry monitoring of clones from heterogeneous primary tumors proved to be a suitable model for the study of in vivo malignancy and in vitro proliferation.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2012 · In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology - Animal
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    ABSTRACT: HER2 gene amplification was explored using the silver stain hybridization in situ (SISH) technique in colon, prostate, lung, ovarian and breast carcinomas. Clinical pathological features and immunohistochemical (IHC) expression were evaluated for HER2 in 225 carcinomas. All cases were subjected to SISH investigation. Statistical analysis revealed an association between HER2 protein expression and gene amplification in breast carcinoma. 14% of colon carcinomas (5 IHC score 0, 1 score 1+ and 1 score 2+), 2% of prostate carcinoma (IHC 2+), 4% of lung carcinomas (IHC 2+) and 16% ovarian carcinomas (IHC 3+) revealed gene amplification. SISH is an advantageous technique for the detection of gene amplification. The use of the SISH technique in breast carcinoma may be an alternative to other in situ hybridization (ISH) techniques however more detailed studies seem necessary to detect HER2 gene amplification in other human malignancies.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2010 · Anticancer research
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    ABSTRACT: To evaluate the expression of fatty acid synthase (FAS) in the oesophagitis-Barrett's oesophagus-oesophageal adenocarcinoma sequence compared with p53 and Ki67 expressions, retained for a long time reliable markers of oesophageal cells biological behaviour. In Barrett's oesophagus, oesophagitis and oesophageal adenocarcinoma patients, biopsies were taken from pathologic sites of the mucosa for histological and immuno-histochemical detection of FAS, p53 and Ki67. FAS expression was positive, when a strong granular cytoplasmic staining was observed in oesophageal cells. Ki67 and p53 was defined positive, when nuclear staining was clearly detected at 10x magnification. A mild expression of FAS was found in 39% of patients with oesophagitis. The amount of FAS expression increased up to 70% in Barrett's oesophagus while this was present in all patients with oesophageal adenocarcinoma (p = 0.0001). In Barrett's oesophagus, p53 was mildly or intensely expressed in 77% and in 15% of cases, respectively, and mildly or intensely expressed in 33% and 67% of patients with oesophageal adenocarcinoma, respectively, (p = 0.0001). Ki67 was mildly expressed in 17% of oesophagitis cases and was absent in the majority of cases. In Barrett's oesophagus, a mild Ki67 expression was present in 46% of cases, and in oesophageal adenocarcinoma it was present prevalently in intense form (67%; p = 0.0001). The over-expression of p53, Ki67 and FAS in otherwise similar morphological groups may be useful to stratify patients into selected prognostic subgroups in order to achieve better clinical approaches.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2009 · Journal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology

  • No preview · Article · Mar 2009 · Digestive and Liver Disease

  • No preview · Article · Mar 2009 · Digestive and Liver Disease
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    ABSTRACT: Fatty acid synthase (FAS) is a recently discovered molecule involved in the energy supply to normal cells. FAS is overexpressed in neoplastic tissues because of their increased energy needs. We explored the immunohistochemical expression of FAS, Ki-67 and p53 in squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) of the larynx and their association with clinicopathological features and outcome. Specimens from 43 patients with SCC were evaluated. Statistical analysis revealed an association between poorly differentiated laryngeal carcinomas and FAS expression (p<0.005) and between FAS and Ki-67 overexpression (p<0.001). Finally, FAS expression was associated with overall survival (p<0.001). We suggest that FAS is a powerful prognostic indicator whose strength can be enhanced when it is evaluated together with clinicopathological data and Ki-67 expression.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2008 · The International journal of biological markers
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to evaluate immunohistochemical markers in pancreatic cancer and to determine the association of their expression with clinicopathological features and prognosis. Thirty pancreatic adenocarcinoma patients were followed-up for an average period of 5 years. FAS, bcl-2, p53 and Ki-67 expression were detected immunohistochemically to determine their prognostic value. FAS was statistically associated with p53 (p = 0.002), Ki-67 (p = 0.003), higher histological grade (p = 0.001 and recurrence and overall survival (p = 0.001). The newly found overexpression of FAS in highly aggressive pancreatic carcinomas may help us stratify patients into different prognostic groups and indicate new therapeutic strategies.
    Preview · Article · Jul 2007 · Anticancer research
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    ABSTRACT: Fatty acid synthase is an enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of long-chain fatty acids. The enzyme expression is minimal in adult tissues and very high in many cancers. Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease that, when long-standing, is associated with an increased risk of colon cancer. The aim of the present study was to establish whether fatty acid synthase levels in the mucosa without dysplasia of patients with long-standing ulcerative colitis were higher than in control subjects. Three groups of patients were selected: 30 with active ulcerative colitis, 30 with ulcerative colitis in remission, and 30 undergoing colonoscopy for colorectal cancer screening, as healthy control subjects. Fatty acid synthase expression was evaluated with immunohistochemical procedures. The enzyme was detected in all patients with active colitis, in most patients with quiescent disease, in both pathologic and normal mucosa, but in only 3 healthy control subjects. Our results suggest that extension of ulcerative colitis is greater than that revealed by common diagnostic techniques.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2006 · American Journal of Clinical Pathology
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to detect immunohistochemical markers in breast carcinoma by means of tissue microarray analysis (TMA) and to associate their expressions with clinicopathological features and prognosis. Fatty acid synthase, bcl-2, bcl-x, p53, estrogen and progesterone receptors, heat shock protein 60 and Her2-neu (c-erbB-2) were evaluated in a group of 149 breast carcinoma patients with a 5-year follow-up period. TMA blocks were made by using duplicate 0.6-mm diameter tissue cores from each paraffin block. Statistical analysis revealed that tumor stage (p=0.003) and node status (p=0.001) were the only two prognostic markers of disease-free survival. Moreover, FAS and bcl-x showed an independent effect on recurrence (p=0.005). The node status was the only marker of overall survival (p=0.05). Our data confirmed recent reports associating the stage of disease, FAS and Bcl-x expressions with recurrence and outcome. These data demonstrated that TMA is an effective substitute for conventional histochemical-immunohistochemical techniques.
    Preview · Article · Jul 2006 · Anticancer research
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    ABSTRACT: We explored the immunohistochemical expression of fatty acid synthase (FAS) in Paget's disease of the vulva (PDV) and its association with clinico-pathological features. FAS is a recently discovered molecule involved in energy supply of normal cells. FAS is also overexpressed in neoplastic tissues because of their increased necessity of energy. Specimens from 20 patients with PDV were immunohistochemically evaluated; increased FAS expression was observed in 7 of 8 patients with invasive PDV (87%), in 3 of 4 patients with microinvasive PDV (75%), and in 1 of 8 patients with noninvasive PDV (12%). Statistical analysis revealed that increased FAS expression was associated with invasive PDV (p = 0.04). To our knowledge, this association of FAS in PDV is the first to be reported in literature. These observations reveal that FAS is a reliable marker of aggressiveness in PDV. The knowledge of FAS statistical association in invasive PDV is an important finding that may stratify these patients in different prognostic groups and determine therapeutic approaches for patient care.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2005 · International Journal of Gynecological Pathology

  • No preview · Article · Oct 2005 · International Journal of Gynecological Pathology
  • M G Porpora · D Pallante · A Ferro · P L Alò · E V Cosmi
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    ABSTRACT: Struma ovarii is a rare ovarian neoplasm. This tumor is generally benign, although malignant transformation has been reported. The preoperative diagnosis is generally difficult. Thyroid hormones may be produced and in a few cases asymptomatic women may develop definitive clinical hypothyroidism after resection of struma ovarii. We report a case of a 39-year-old woman who underwent laparoscopic resection of an asymptomatic right ovarian mass. The pathologic diagnosis was struma ovarii. The postoperative period was uneventful and her thyroid function remained normal.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2005 · Clinical and experimental obstetrics & gynecology
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of our study was to investigate the plasma chromogranin A (CgA) and adrenomedullin (AM) levels in patients with pheochromocytomas. We collected blood samples for measurement of plasma CgA and AM in 21 patients with pheochromocytomas, 43 healthy subjects and 26 patients with solid non-functioning adrenocortical adenomas. In 11 patients with pheochromocytomas plasma CgA and AM were measured again four weeks after tumor removal. CgA and AM were measured by means of a novel solid-phase two-site immunoradiometric assay based on monoclonal antibodies (CgA-RIA CT, CIS bio international) and by a specific radioimmunoassay (RIA, Phoenix Pharm. Inc.), respectively. The mean plasma CgA level (+/- SD) in patients with pheochromocytomas (204 +/- 147.9 ng/mL) was significantly higher (P < 0.001) than that in healthy subjects (41.6 +/- 10.7 ng/mL) and in patients with non-functioning adrenocortical adenomas (47.3 +/- 17.6 ng/mL). The mean plasma AM concentration (+/- SD) in patients with pheochromocytomas (27.5 +/- 10.4 pg/mL) was significantly higher (P < 0.001) than that in HS (13.8 +/- 4.5 pg/mL) and in patients with non-functioning adrenocortical adenomas (16.6 +/- 7.3 pg/mL). Plasma CgA levels correlated with plasma AM levels (r = 0.501; P < 0.02) and with plasma metanephrine levels (r = 0.738; P < 0.0001) in patients with pheochromocytomas. In 11 patients with pheochromocytomas plasma CgA and AM concentrations significantly decreased after tumor removal (P < 0.001 for both). Circulating CgA and AM had a sensitivity of 76.2% and 81%, a specificity of 97.7% and 90.7%, and an accuracy of 91% and 88%, respectively. This study demonstrates that circulating CgA and AM levels are increased in pheochromocytoma patients compared with healthy subjects and patients with non-functioning adrenocortical adenomas. Moreover, at the time of diagnosis plasma CgA levels correlated with plasma AM levels and with plasma metanephrine levels in all patients with pheochromocytomas. In conclusion, plasma CgA and AM concentrations may represent additional biochemical parameters for clinical monitoring of patients with pheochromocytomas.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2005 · Tumori
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    ABSTRACT: We explored the expression of Fatty Acid Synthase (FAS) in lung carcinomas and its association with clinico-pathological features and prognosis. FAS is a recently discovered molecule involved in the energy supply of normal cells. FAS is also overexpressed in neoplastic tissues because of their increased necessity for energy. One hundred and six patients with non-small cell lung carcinoma were followed-up for an average period of 5 years. FAS expression was detected immunohistochemically. FAS staining was observed in 61 out of 106 cases (57.54%). Statistical analysis revealed that FAS had an overall low prognostic value (p = 0.14), while FAS-negative expression in stage I patients showed a trend for better survival (p = 0.10). PTNM stage (p < 0.0001) was the only significant prognostic marker for overall survival. FAS is a reliable marker of low-stage clinically aggressive lung carcinomas. The determination of FAS expression in lung carcinomas may stratify patients and determine therapeutic approaches for their care.
    Preview · Article · Nov 2004 · Anticancer research
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    ABSTRACT: Adrenomedullin (ADM) is a new potent vasorelaxant peptide identified originally in extracts of pheochromocytoma, and is widely distributed within the tissue. Although histopathological studies have demonstrated the presence of ADM-immunoreactivity (ir-ADM) in some human neuroendocrine tumors (such as insulinoma, pituitary adenoma, and gastrointestinal neuroendocrine tumors), data on the presence of ADM in normal and pathological parathyroid gland are not available. Plasma AM concentrations were recently reported to be elevated in patients with PHP (primary hyperparathyroidism). The aim of our study was to determine tissue distribution of ir-AM in 34 patients with PHP (27 female and 7 male, mean age 50 +/- 6 years) undergoing surgery. Six normal parathyroid samples incidentally found during thyroidectomy for neoplastic diseases and ten sections of human rectus abdominis muscle tissue were used as controls (C). Adenomatous parathyroids were found in 22 PHP and hyperplastic parathyroids in twelve PHP patients. Four hyperplastic parathyroids were found in three PHP patients and three parathyroids in 10 PHP patients. Eight parathyroids revealed a prevalent diffuse growth pattern and four showed a prevalent nodular growth pattern. Immunohistochemical ADM expression was seen in seven of twelve (58.3 %) hyperplastic parathyroids and in fourteen of twenty-two (66.6 %) adenomatous glands. Parathyroid chief cells showed strong cytoplasmatic staining, whereas oncocytic cells showed a faintly aspecific cytoplasmatic staining. Normal parathyroids were negative for ir-ADM. In conclusion, we found the presence of ADM in parathyroid chief cells of PHP patients using immunohistochemistry in our study.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2004 · Hormone and Metabolic Research
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    ABSTRACT: To explore the expression of fatty acid synthase (FAS) and human erythrocyte glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1) in endometrial carcinomas and to detect associations with clinicopathological features and prognosis. FAS and GLUT1 are two molecules involved in energy supply of normal cells. These markers are overexpressed in neoplastic tissues because of their increased necessity of energy. Ninety-five patients with endometrial carcinoma were followed-up for an average period of 5 years. FAS and GLUT1 expressions were evaluated by immunohistochemistry on formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues. Staining was determined with a semiquantitative method. Negative controls were obtained from patients submitted to hysterectomy for uterine prolapse. Eighty-five cases were endometrioid, 7 were serous, and 1 was a mucinous carcinoma. Seventy-two cases (75%) were stage I, 12 (13%) were stage II, and 11 (12%) were stage III carcinomas. Sixteen (15%) carcinomas recurred. Nine patients (8%) died for cancer during the follow-up period. FAS expression was observed in 53 cases (56%). GLUT1 expression was observed in 32 (43%) cases. Statistical analysis revealed that FAS (P = 0.04) and stage (P = 0.001) of the disease were the only two independent predictors of recurrence. GLUT1 and other clinicopathologic parameters had no prognostic association. FAS is a reliable marker of clinically aggressive endometrial carcinomas. The knowledge of FAS expression in endometrial carcinomas is an important finding that may stratify patients into selected groups and determine therapeutic approaches for patient care.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2004 · Gynecologic Oncology
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    ABSTRACT: Claudin proteins represent a large family of integral membrane proteins crucial for tight junction (TJ) formation and function. Claudins have been shown to be up-regulated in various cancers and have been suggested as possible biomarkers and targets for cancer therapy. Because claudin-3 and claudin-4 have been proposed to be expressed in epithelial ovarian cancer, we have performed a detailed analysis of CLDN3 and CLDN4 expression in a panel of ovarian tumors of various subtypes and cell lines. We also investigated whether high expression of claudin-3 and claudin-4 was associated with TJ function in ovarian cancer cells. Experimental Design: RNA was obtained from a panel of 39 microdissected epithelial ovarian tumors of various histological subtypes for real-time reverse transcription-PCR analysis. In addition, a total of 70 cases of ovarian carcinomas, ovarian cysts, and normal ovarian epithelium from a tissue array were analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Finally, a panel of cell lines was used for Western analysis of claudin expression and TJ permeability studies. Although expressed at low levels in some normal human tissues, including the ovary, CLDN3 and CLDN4 are highly up-regulated in epithelial ovarian cancers of all subtypes. Immunohistochemical analyses using our ovarian tissue array confirmed the high level of expression of claudin-3 and claudin-4 in the majority of ovarian carcinomas, including many tumors exhibiting cytoplasmic staining. Ovarian cystadenoma did not frequently overexpress these proteins, suggesting that the expression of these proteins is associated with malignancy. In ovarian cancer cell lines, claudin-3 and claudin-4 expression was not associated with functional TJs as measured by transepithelial electrical resistance. These results show that CLDN3 and CLDN4 are frequently up-regulated in ovarian tumors and cell lines and may represent novel markers for this disease. Overexpression of these genes in ovarian cancer also suggests interesting scenarios for the involvement of TJ in tumorigenesis. A better knowledge of the mechanisms underlying ovarian tumorigenesis will likely result in the development of novel approaches for the diagnosis and therapy of this deadly disease.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2003 · Clinical Cancer Research
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    ABSTRACT: Background Treatment of nephroblastoma (Wilms tumor) has presently achieved a greater than 80% cure rate. Pathologic stage and grade are considered the most reliable prognostic parameters, but other biologic factors are under study in order to improve patient stratification into risk groups. Correlation of elevated levels of the lipogenic enzyme fatty acid synthase (FAS) with aggressiveness of some cancers has drawn attention to this enzyme as a possible marker of poor prognosis.ProcedureTo determine the predictive strength of FAS expression in Wilms tumor (with particular emphasis on intermediate risk, i.e., non anaplastic tumors, the vast majority of nephroblastomas), we evaluated immunostaining expression in archival specimens from 94 neoplasms. The degree of expression was correlated with stage, grade, clinical course and administration of prenephrectomy chemotherapy.ResultsExpression of FAS increased in anaplastic tumors (P = 0.043) and higher stages (P = 0.029). FAS expression correlated with OS and DFS at both univariate and multivariate analysis. Comparable results were obtained when analyzing the intermediate risk population separately. Pretreatment resulted in an increased FAS expression, without reaching significance level (P = 0.059).Conclusions Expression of FAS might be an independent prognostic factor, particularly for intermediate-risk patients. The blockade of fatty acid synthesis by inhibition of FAS enzymatic function by means of metabolic analogues might prove a novel target pathway for the treatment of nephroblastoma. Med Pediatr Oncol 2003;40:302–308. © 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2003 · Medical and Pediatric Oncology
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    ABSTRACT: Fatty acid synthase (FAS), the key enzyme responsible for the synthesis of fatty acids, is weakly expressed in some normal human tissues. Recently, FAS has been demonstrated to be overexpressed in many non-neoplastic highly proliferative lesions and in aggressive carcinomas with poor outcome, including colon, breast and ovary carcinomas. In order to evaluate the prognostic significance of FAS in human melanoma, we analysed by means of immunohistochemistry, using a monoclonal anti-FAS antibody, 77 primary melanomas and 30 nodal and cutaneous metastasis. Thirty nevi (15 dermal and 15 junctional nevi) were used as controls. All patients were followed-up for 5 years. Thirty-four melanomas expressed strong FAS immunostaining; the remaining 43 cases showed weak expression or were negative. All cutaneous and nodal metastasis were strongly positive. All patients with metastases deceased during the follow up period. Control specimens expressed weak staining. None of these patients developed recurrence. Statistical analysis revealed significant association of FAS expression with Breslow thickness (p = 0.012). The intensity of FAS immunostaining was also predictive of prognosis (p = 0.049). FAS is a reliable prognostic marker in human melanomas. FAS predictive strength is increased when associated with Breslow thickness. The observation of FAS in human melanomas may stratify patients for stricter follow-ups and suggest different therapeutic approaches.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2003 · Journal of Cutaneous Pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Fatty Acid Synthase (FAS) and Human Erythrocyte Glucose Transporter 1 (GLUT1) are new markers involved in the biological activities of cancer cells. FAS is a multifunctional enzyme that synthesizes palmitate from acetyl-CoA and malonyl-CoA. GLUT1 is a transmembrane protein normally expressed in perineurium and erythrocytes. FAS and GLUT1 expression have been recently described in many aggressive tumors. We explored the immunohistochemical expression of FAS and GLUT1 in bladder carcinomas to reveal statistical associations with clinico-pathological features and recurrence. Thirty-one node- and distant metastasis-negative transitional cell carcinomas from patients with a five-year follow-up were evaluated for FAS and GLUT1 expression. Univariate analysis showed that low-grade, pTa stage and FAS-negative expression were associated with indolent tumors. Multivariate analysis showed that FAS expression (p = 0.006) and pT1-2 stage tumors (p = 0.001) were independent predictors of recurrence. Endogenous fatty acids are an exploitable storage of energy for aggressive human bladder carcinomas. Glucose uptake is not required by bladder tumors.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2003 · Anticancer research

Publication Stats

1k Citations
121.70 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1996-2012
    • Sapienza University of Rome
      • • Laboratory of Experimental Medicine and Pathology Environmental
      • • Department of Experimental Medicine
      • • Department of Gynecology-Obstetrics & Urology
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 2009
    • Applied Science Laboratories
      Бедфорд, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2003
    • IFO - Istituti Fisioterapici Ospitalieri
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 1998
    • University of Rome Tor Vergata
      • Dipartimento di Medicina Sperimentale e Chirurgia
      Roma, Latium, Italy