Mauro Perretti - Curriculum vitae#


Full CV(info)

EDUCATION
  • 1975 - 1979 High School Diploma (Scientific Lyceum) with a mark 50\60.
  • 1979 - 1985 Laurea (110 cum laude) in Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Florence, Italy. Thesis: Effect of enzymatic induction on polyamine biosynthesis and on the diamine oxidase activity in Japanese quails' liver.
  • 1986 - 1989 Certificate of Specialization in Pharmacology (70 cum laude), Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Florence, Italy. Thesis: Studies of the interrelation between interleukin-1 and glucocorticoids.
  • 1992-1996 Degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Faculty of Science), University of London, UK. Thesis: Lipocortin 1 and the control of neutrophil migration.

Fluent Spoken and Written English

WORK EXPERIENCE
  • 1982 - 1985 Student in the laboratory headed by Prof. F Buffoni at the Department of Pharmacology, University of Florence, Italy.
  • 1986 - July 1987 Voluntary assistant in the above laboratory.
  • July 1987 -April 1991 Scientist in the laboratory of Pharmacology headed by Prof. L Parente at the Sclavo Research Centre, Siena, Italy.
  • May 1991 - April 1993 Research Scientist in the laboratory of Biochemical Pharmacology headed by Prof. RJ Flower at The William Harvey Research Institute, St. Bartholomew's Hospital Medical College, London, UK.
  • May 1993 - August 1998 Senior Scientist (Honorary Lecturer Status) in the above Department.
  • April 1997 – March 2002 Post-doctoral Research Fellow of the Arthritis Research Campaign UK.
  • September 1998 – August 2000 Senior Lecturer in the above Department.
  • September 2000 – August 2001 Reader in Immunopharmacology in the above Department.
  • Since September 2000 – Joint Head of the Centre for Biochemical Pharmacology, The William Harvey Research Institute
  • Since September 2001 – Professor of Immunopharmacology in the above Department.
  • April 2002 – July 2007 Senior Research Fellow of the Arthritis Research Campaign UK.
  • Since September 2006 – Deputy Director, The William Harvey Research Institute

AWARDS OR MARKS OF ESTEEM
  1. Recipient of a Post-doctoral Fellowship the Arthritis Research Campaign April 1997-March 2002.
  2. September 1998 - Cattlin Prize, awarded by the Joint Research Board of the Special Trustees of St. Bartholomew's Hospital as an "Excellent Non-Clinical Scientist".
  3. December 2000 – Quintiles Prize, awarded by the British Pharmacological Society for “Outstanding research in immunopharmacology”.
  4. Personal Chair, Queen Mary University of London, September 2001.
  5. Recipient of a Senior Fellowship the Arthritis Research Campaign April 2002-March 2007.
  6. Elected Fellow of the British Pharmacological Society (August 2004).
  7. Member of the Wellcome Trust Physiology Panel (October 2005-July 2008).
  8. Representative for the School of Medicine and Dentistry at Queen Mary College Research Board (2009-present).
  9. Member of the site visit committee of the Centre for Pathophysiology of Toulouse Pourpan (University of Toulouse) Dec 3-4 2009.
  10. Member of the Committee Panel for the HRD and SFI Translational Research Awards (Ireland), October 5th 2010.
  11. Elected Fellow of the Academia Europea (September 2010).

MEMBERSHIPS
  1. Societá Italiana di Farmacologia (1991-1995).
  2. British Pharmacological Society (from 1993).
  3. European Inflammation Society (from 1994).
  4. British Inflammatory Research Association (from 1996).
  5. The American Microcirculatory Society (1999-2010).
  6. The American Society for Investigative Pathology (from 2005).
  7. The Canadian Society of Gastroenterology (2006-2008).
  8. The International Society of Nutrigenics/Nutrigenomics (from 2010)
  9. The British Microcirculation Society (from 2010)

EDITORIAL & REFEREE ACTIVITIES
  • January 1998 to December 2001, Member of the Editorial Board - British Journal of Pharmacology.
  • January 1999 to December 2003, Member of the Editorial Board - Microcirculation.
  • From January 2000, Member of the Advisory Board - Inflammation Research
  • From January 2001, Member of the Editorial Board - Journal of Pharmacological and Toxicological Methods
  • March 2003-March 2007, Member of the Advisory Board - Journal of Pharmacological Sciences
  • Jan 2004-June 2006, Member of the Editorial Board – Annexins
  • From October 2004, Member of the Editorial Board – Revista do Hospital das Clinicas.
  • From January 2006, Principal Editor, The Scientific World
  • August 2006, Editor (together with Marco Cassatella): issue of Current Opinion of Pharmacology, section Immunopharmacology.
  • From July 2007, Invited to join the membership of the Immunopharmacology & Hematologic Pharmacology Section of the Pharmacology & Drug Discovery Faculty. [Faculty 1000].
  • From September 2007, Member of the Editorial Board of Inflammation.
  • From September 2010, Member of the Editorial Board of Current Opinion in Pharmacology
  • From October 2010, Member of the Editorial Board of Frontiers in the Pharmacology of Inflammation

Several papers refereed each year for the following Scientific Journals: Biochemical Pharmacology, European Journal of Pharmacology, Life Science, Gut, Microcirculation, J Leukoc Biol., Journal of Immunology, FASEB Journal, Nat Review Cell Biology, British Journal of Pharmacology, American Journal of Pathology, Nat Review Drug Disc

Several project and program grant applications refereed for the Arthritis Research Campaign, the British Heart Foundation, the Medical Research Council UK, The Wellcome Trust, and also The National Health and Medical Research Council (Australia), Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Italian Ministry of University, The Singapore National Medical Research Council, United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation.

RESEARCH INTERESTS

MP laboratory (>15 scientists, students and visiting fellows) focuses on the investigation of the endogenous mediators that actively promote resolution of inflammation for the regain of tissue homeostasis. Natural (resolving) Inflammation results by a concerted regulation of several mediators, so that there exists an appropriate temporal and spatial balance between endogenous pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory mediators and pathways.

This multinational group studies specific elements of this endogenous response, with a dual approach: 1) on one hand, the patho-physiological relevance of these mediators in models of acute (air-pouch, peritonitis) and chronic inflammation (e.g. arthritis, endotoxaemia) is determined using a combination of molecular, cellular and integrate biology approaches (e.g. transgenic tools); 2) on the other hand, an equally important goal is identification of the target(s) mediating the effects of endogenous anti-inflammation as novel leads for innovative drug discovery: these new therapeutics will potentially produce much less side effects, since they will be mimicking the way our body naturally controls the inflammatory reaction.

Within the complexity of the inflammatory reaction, a strong area of interest is the regulation of leukocyte trafficking in the microcirculation; use of imaging techniques (e.g. intravital microscopy) is abundantly done (brain, mesentery, cremaster) as well as the use of genetically modified animals. Animal models are complemented by other analysis under flow (the flow chamber assay allows to study effects on leukocyte/endothelium interaction under flow using human cells). In the last 3-4 years, most if not all our lines of research, have been investigated for their translational potential, so that more and more work is devoted to determine if there are alterations (at the cellular or molecular levels) for any of the elements that form the pathways listed below. Diseases under investigation span from large vessel vasculitides to rheumatoid arthritis, from osteoarthritis to cystic fibrosis. Under the research niche of endogenous anti-inflammation, the following mediators/systems are investigated:

The Annexin A1 system, that is annexin 1 (the ligand), its receptor (a specific 7-TM GPCR termed FPRL-1 or ALX), its catabolism. Current studies involve assessment of the operative modes of this system on cells of innate as and adaptive immune response. In addition, drug development based on peptido-mimetics of the Annexin A1 N-terminal region is also a major interest.

The melanocortin peptide system, focusing on the anti-inflammatory actions of ACTH and alpha-MSH, with a strong interest on i) the receptor responsible for these inhibitory effects (hence, potential selective agonist development programmes) and ii) the assessment whether agonists (such as ACTH and alpha-MSH) could be produced in the periphery by immune cells, leading to the discovery of an anti-inflammatory loop that might be generated locally, within the inflamed tissue, during the resolution phase of inflammation.

Galectins. The anti-inflammatory effects of Galectin-1 have been studied predominantly in the context of endothelial cell biology. Use of transgenic approaches and silencing RNA (for human cells) is allowing definition of the role of this endothelial-derived protein on lymphocyte and neutrophil interaction, as assessed by intravital microscopy and the flow chamber assays. Novel lines are emerging, linking the pharmacological and pathophysiological functions of Galectin-1 and other members of this family of lectins, branching out of acute inflammation into more chronic experimental systems.

New Projects. Opportunities are often explored to augment the efforts of this lab in elucidating novel and pivotal endogenous anti-inflammatory mediators and targets. Examples are current research on Resolvins (in collaboration with Prof CN Serhan, at Harvard) and Chemerin (in collaboration with Dr D Greaves, Oxford University).

Glucocorticoids. A long-dated expertise in glucocorticoid biology (and anti-inflammatory effects) stemmed from the link between these hormones (and their synthetic derivatives) and annexin A1. Current interests are to reduce side effects of glucocorticoids therapeutic application: this is experimented in an innovative way, a major interest being analysis of the positive (reduction of arthritis) and negative (blockade of bone catabolism) interaction between Glucocorticoids and Calcitonin. Studies on non-genomic effects of glucocorticoids in platelets are also ongoing, with attention to RA.

Commercial Partnerships

Two patents associated to these projects have been licenced to Unigene Corp (Fairfield, NJ), a testimony to the constant attention for therapeutic development. As part of this deal, Perretti's lab will work together with this US Biotech to attain a therapeutic benefit from the potential synergism between calcitonin and glucocorticoids for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and other forms of arthritides. In addition, the Unigene Corp. proprietary know-how on peptide production and peptide oral delivery will be applied to the development of small fragments of the anti-inflammatory protein Annexin A1 for the treatment of post-ischaemic pathological conditions. Other collaborative projects are on-going with Action Pharma A/S (Copenhagen, DK) and UCB (Slough, UK).
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