Maria Valeria Corrias

IRCCS Istituto Giannina Gaslini, Italy


Maria Valeria Corrias holds a Ph.D. degree in biological sciences. She is currently the Head of Molecular Oncology at the Laboratory of Oncology, Gaslini Institute, Genoa, Italy, where she is working since 1988. First, she was involved in gene expression studies in neuroblastoma tumors and in the use of antisense oligonucleotides as potential antitumor agents. Then, she evaluated the expression of several genes in neuroblastoma cells during drug-induced differentiation and cloned an isoform-specific region of the human Ca-dependent Protein Kinase C. In 1994, she started gene therapy studies by transfecting neuroblastoma cells with several cytokines and by developing a small antibody against neuroblastoma cells. She evaluated their antitumor activity in vitro and in preclinical animal models, in view of a potential use as vaccine. She evaluated the susceptibility of freshly isolated neuroblastoma cells to NK cell-mediated lysis and tested the efficacy of NK cells infusion in a preclinical neuroblastoma model. She also applied molecular biology techniques to the study of biological samples from children with neuroblastoma and compared them to other conventional and experimental detection methods. Recently, her studies have focused on the potential prognostic role of gene and miRNA expression analysis, the characterization of metastatic bone marrow-infiltrating neuroblastoma cells, and the bone marrow microenvironment.

Biography Updated on 24 October 2012

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