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University of Campania Luigi Vanvitelli
Areas of Interest:
Aging and Cognition; Dementia; Cognitive Impairment; neurodegenerative disease
Biography & Research:
Researcher and Aggregate Professor of Neurology at University of Campania "L.Vanvitelli". The main laboratory experiences are: Studies on experimental animal model of ischemic penumbra of rat brain, and studies of histology and immunohistochemistry of the brains of patients who died from sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. The acquired laboratory techniques are: immunohistochemistry, Western blot, PCR; ELISA; Chemoluminescence. The care and research activities carried out since 2008 includes departmental activities and at the outpatient clinic of Cognitive Disorders of the Second Neurological Clinic of the University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”. The main research studies were: the study of hyper-activation of microglia and expression of cyclo-oxygenase (COX) in sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (sCJD), dedicated to the search for relationships between pathogenetic type of prion protein (PrPSc) deposited in nervous tissue and activation of the "neuro-inflammatory" response in nervous tissue; a study on a new mutation of the prion protein gene (PRNP), including correlation among clinical, neuropathological and biochemical data and finally the construction of ‘in vitro’ cell models. Clinical research activities were: clinical study on progranulin gene mutations in some forms of degenerative dementia (frontotemporal lobar degeneration) and their impact on the phenotype, based on the observation of a family with corticobasal degeneration; clinical and genetic study on a case of cerebral amyloid angiopathy associated with frontotemporal dementia. The principal scientific interest is aimed at cognitive disorders and neurodegenerative diseases with cognitive impairment.