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Morara Stefano

stefano moraraSenior research scientist
Via Luigi Vanvitelli 32
20129 Milano
Tel 02-50317119
Fax 02-7490574
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Neuropeptides in neuroinflammation and cns development

Research summary

 A main laboratory topic is to study the role of neuropeptides as molecular players in neural system–immune system interactions during neuroinflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases, and also in CNS developmental processes. A second main topic is the role of glial cells, in particular microglia, as cellular players in the same physiological and pathological processes. As experimental models of diseases we are using experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis and toxin-induced Parkinson’s models, whereas for developmental studies, the ontogenesis of cerebellar cortex is used. Recent findings have been the involvement of CGRP family of peptides and receptors in brain inflammatory pathogenetic processes.

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A further effort of the laboratory is dedicated toward the development and exploitation of automatic quantitative technical approaches in neuromorphological analysis. Recent achievements have been the development of automatic procedures that can quantitatively measure morphologically-identifiable stages of microglia inflammatory activation.

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Representative publications

A. Consonni, S. Morara, F. Codazzi, F. Grohovaz, D. Zacchetti (2011)
Inhibition of lipopolysaccharide-induced microglia activation by calcitonin gene-related peptide and adrenomedullin. Mol. Cell. Neurosci., 48:151-160

S. D'Antoni, L. Zambusi, F. Codazzi, D. Zacchetti, F. Grohovaz, L. Provini, M.V. Catania, S. Morara (2010)
Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide (CGRP) Stimulates Purkinje Cell Dendrite Growth in Culture. Neurochem Res., 2010; 35:2135-2143

S. Morara, L.-P. Wang, V. Filippov, I.M. Dickerson, F. Grohovaz, L. Provini, and H. Kettenmann (2008)
Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) triggers Ca2+ responses in cultured astrocytes and in Bergmann glial cells from cerebellar slices. Eur. J. Neuroscience, 28:2213–2220

S. Morara, J.J.L. van der Want, H. De Weerd, L. Provini and A. Rosina (2001)
Ultrastructural analysis of climbing fiber-Purkinje cell synaptogenesis in the rat cerebellum. Neuroscience 108:655-671

S. Morara, A. Rosina, L. Provini, G. Forloni, A. Caretti, and S.J. Wimalawansa (2000)
Calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor expression in the neurons and glia of developing rat cerebellum: an autoradiographic and immunohistochemical analysis. Neuroscience 100:381-391

S. Morara, C. Sternini, L. Provini and A. Rosina (1995)
Developmentally regulated expression of alpha- and beta-CGRP mRNA and CGRP-immunoreactivity in the rat inferior olive. J. Comp. Neurol. 354:27-38

S. Morara, L. Provini and A. Rosina (1989)
CGRP expression in the rat olivocerebellar system during postnatal development. Brain Res. 504:315-319