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Biomedicines Webinar | Non-coding RNAs in Health and Disease

Part of the MDPI Biomedicines Webinars series
24 Nov 2022, 10:00 (CET)

Noncoding RNAs, Cellular Pathways, Developmental Pathways, Gene Expression, Metabolic Diseases, Neurological Diseases, Cardiovascular Diseases, Cancer
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Welcome from the Chair

2nd Biomedicines Webinar

Non-coding RNAs in Health and Disease

We all understand the importance of science and innovation in our day-to-day lives and the ways in which they are transforming the world. In the last years, the idea that genetic information travelling towards proteins has been unhinged. The widest part of the human genome is indeed represented by non-coding transcriptome and non-coding RNAs (nc-RNAs) represent the largest part of the transcriptional production of the human genome, playing pivotal roles, both in health and disease processes. Nc-RNAs are involved in regulatory functions and they can also interact with each other regulating several cellular programs. Therefore, the perturbation of their interactions as well as their dysregulation may have striking consequences. More recently, nc-RNAs have also been described in the extracellular compartment, being able to mediate cell-to-cell communication and acting as disease-specific diagnostic, prognostic and predictive biomarkers.

This webinar is focused on the role of nc-RNAs as circulating biomarkers as well as biological key molecules in more than one disease. Since the new frontier of medicine is precision medicine, the deepening of the biological role of non-coding RNAs and their use as biomarkers will open new interesting perspectives for clinicians to reach early diagnosis, prognosis and to propose tailored therapeutic strategies, designed to maximize the efficacy and minimize unwanted side effects, making them best candidates to render precision medicine a reality.

Date: 24 November 2022

Time: 10:00 am CET | 4:00 am EST | 5:00 pm CST Asia

Webinar ID: 820 3778 8739

Webinar Secretariat:


Department of Experimental Medicine, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy

Dr. Giuseppina Catanzaro is a Medical Doctor and a Research Fellow in the Department of Experimental Medicine in Sapienza University of Rome. She received her PhD in Biotechnology from the University of Teramo and pursued her post-doctoral studies in the field of Biochemistry in the laboratory of Prof. Maccarrone. She joined a post-doc in the Bracco Research Center where she was in charge of the biological part of a vast multidisciplinary research project involving cancer cell metabolism, collaborating with the Albeda Research Group in Copenhagen (Denmark) to study the metabolic activity of several cancer cells. Then, she moved in Sapienza University where she has been involved in projects focused on the molecular and clinical aspects of cancers. Her activity is especially concentrated on defining the role of non-coding RNAs as key molecules in cancer and metabolic diseases, both for their biological functions and for their role as diagnostic, prognostic and predictive biomarkers. She is author of more than 40 original peer-reviewed papers and in the last years she contributed to increase the knowledge about the role of microRNAs, with a special focus on pediatric neuro-oncology. For her research, she won many prestigious awards, such as the Ricerche Oncologiche di Base award in 2018 and in 2022, and a special Mention for the best video for EXPO 2020 Dubai for the call “Beyond borders: La conoscenza unisce le persone” sponsored by Fondazione Bracco.

Invited Speakers

Department of Experimental, Diagnostic and Specialty Medicine – DIMES, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy

Manuela Ferracin is Professor of Pathology at Bologna University (Italy). She has a background in molecular oncology, with a specific expertise in the identification of diagnostic or prognostic gene signatures. Professor Ferracin contributed to more than 150 publications in peer-reviewed journals (H-index = 54, >25000 citations in Scopus website). She belongs to the team of researchers that first showed an association between microRNAs and chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). They were the first to develop a microarray for high throughput microRNA expression analysis. After the first investigations on CLL, she actively participated to the discovery of a miRNA-based prognostic signature in CLL (Second author, NEJM 2005), miRNA dysregulation in breast cancer (first author, Cancer Res 2005), hepatocellular carcinoma and colorectal cancer. She participated to the study that discovered the role of a new class of long non-coding RNAs, ultraconserved regions (UCRs), as functionally relevant genetic elements in tumorigenesis (co-first author, Cancer Cell 2007). […] As postdoc, she obtained her first independent grant to develop protocols for absolute microRNA quantification in biological fluids of cancer patients. She identified cancer-specific signatures of cell-free microRNAs for cancer diagnosis (Last author, CEBP 2014; First author, Oncotarget 2015, JoVE 2016, Int J Mol Sci 2017). In 2016, she established her independent research group and obtained grants to study microRNA biomarkers in melanoma (corresponding/last author J Invest Dermatol. 2020; Cell Death Dis. 2021 and Noncoding RNA. 2021), develop a molecular assay for CUP prediction (last author, Front Oncol 2018; Cancers 2021 and MolOncol 2021) and explore the possibility to develop CUP in vivo models.

Institute of Translational Pharmacology, National Research Council, Rome, Italy,
Laboratory of Resolution of Neuroinflammation, IRCCS Santa Lucia Foundation, Rome, Italy

Principal Investigator and Head of the Laboratory of Resolution of Neuroinflammation. He received his PhD from the University of Rome and he pursued his postdoctoral studies in the laboratories of Dr. Luca Battistini in the field of Neuroimmunology and of Prof. Mauro Maccarrone in the field of Biochemistry. He joined as a post-doc the lab of Prof. Jacobsson at the University of Stockholm and he later received the position of Assistant Professor at Campus Bio-medico University of Rome. He is a visiting researcher in the lab of Prof. Charles Serhan in Brigham's Hospital at Harvard Medical School and is currently a Senior researcher and Group Leader at the Institute of Translational Pharmacology, CNR and IRCCS Santa Lucia Foundation in Rome. His research activity focuses on the immunomodulatory role of bioactive lipids on immune cell populations in both health and disease and on these topics he published 60 original peer-reviewed papers. Over the last years, Dr. Chiurchiù and his team focus on the novel field of "Resolution of neuroinflammation" and his studies have contributed to the discovery of the role of the newly characterized specialized pro-resolving lipid mediators in immunity and their impairment in neurodegenerative diseases. For his research he received several prestigious awards, such as the Galeno Award in 2018 for best young Italian researcher.

Department of Molecular Medicine, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy

Agnese Po is an associate professor at the Department of Molecular Medicine of Sapienza University of Rome, and she has longstanding expertise in the fields of molecular oncology of solid cancers and non-coding RNAs. More specifically, her work focused on the characterization of the molecular events involved in tumorigenesis mainly focusing on solid tumors and dysregulated pathways (e.g. Hedgehog/Gli) controlling progenitor cell development; isolation, and characterization of primary cancer cells and cancer stem cells; Identification of novel molecules as oncosuppressor or oncogenes and investigation of their biological function in vitro and in vivo. Regarding non-coding RNAs, Agnese Po was involved from her early days as a researcher in the analysis of microRNAs and long-noncoding RNA expression and biological function in pediatric brain tumors. Moreover, she has more recently been involved in studies on the expression of circulating nucleic acids, which can be used as circulating biomarkers in oncological and metabolic diseases.

Webinar Content

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Time in CET

Dr. Giuseppina Catanzaro

Chair Introduction

10:00 - 10:10 pm

Dr. Manuela Ferracin

Molecular and Genetic Characterization of Cancers of Unknown Primary: Diagnostic and Therapeutic Implications

10:10 - 10:30 pm


10:30 -10 35 pm

Dr. Valerio Chiurchiù

Specialized Pro-resolving Mediators and Brain Diseases: A Novel Lipid-microRNA Axis in Neuroinflammation

10:35 - 10:55 pm


10:55 -11:00 pm

Dr. Agnese Po

MicroRNAs As Circulating and Tissue Biomarkers in Medullary Thyroid Carcinoma

11:00 - 11:20 pm


11:20 - 11:25 pm

Closing of Webinar
Dr. Giuseppina Catanzaro

11:25 - 11:30 pm

Relevant SI

Non-coding RNAs in Health and Disease
Guest Editor: Dr. Giuseppina Catanzaro
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 March 2022)

Topical Collection "MicroRNA in Health and Tumor"
A topical collection in Biomedicines (ISSN 2227-9059). This collection belongs to the section "Immunology and Immunotherapy".
Collection Editor: Dr. Francesca Lovat

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