98 research outputs found

    Development of the SHiP downstream muon detector

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    SHiP (Search for Hidden Particles) is a beam dump experiment proposed at CERN SPS, currently in the design stage. SHiP aims to observe long lived particles very weakly coupled with ordinary matter, as expected in a large number of Hidden Sector models, that are able do describe Dark matter, neutrino oscillation and the origins of the Barionic Asimmetry of universe. In this thesis the development of the SHiP Downstream Muon Detector is described. This subdetector aims to identify with high efficiency muons produced by signal processes and to distinguish them from neutrino- and beam-induced background ones. In order to effectively distinguish background events mistakenly reconstructed as signal vertexes due to their spatial overlapping, a time resolution better than 200 ps is mandatory. Therefore, it is extremely important that the detector components are optimized with respect to time resolution. The detector employs active layers made of plastic scintillator tiles, each coupled to silicon photomultipliers (SiPM). This thesis focuses on the development of tile prototypes that are able to meet the detector time resolution requirements, through the study of various aspects of the tile design. The improved design defined with the contribution of this thesis work has become the current baseline design and will be tested with a prototype in early 2020 at the Frascati INFN Laboratories

    Study of the tracking performance of a liquid Argon detector based on a novel optical imaging concept

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    The Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) is a long-baseline accelerator experiment designed to make a significant contribution to the study of neutrino oscillations with unprecedented sensitivity. The main goal of DUNE is the determination of the neutrino mass ordering and the leptonic CP violation phase, key parameters of the three-neutrino flavor mixing that have yet to be determined. An important component of the DUNE Near Detector complex is the System for on-Axis Neutrino Detection (SAND) apparatus, which will include GRAIN (GRanular Argon for Interactions of Neutrinos), a novel liquid Argon detector aimed at imaging neutrino interactions using only scintillation light. For this purpose, an innovative optical readout system based on Coded Aperture Masks is investigated. This dissertation aims to demonstrate the feasibility of reconstructing particle tracks and the topology of CCQE (Charged Current Quasi Elastic) neutrino events in GRAIN with such a technique. To this end, the development and implementation of a reconstruction algorithm based on Maximum Likelihood Expectation Maximization was carried out to directly obtain a three-dimensional distribution proportional to the energy deposited by charged particles crossing the LAr volume. This study includes the evaluation of the design of several camera configurations and the simulation of a multi-camera optical system in GRAIN

    Histamine in Fish Products Randomly Collected in Southern Italy: A 6-Year Study.

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    In total, 4,615 fresh and processed fish samples collected from 2010 to 2015 were analyzed for histamine by ultrahigh-performance liquid chromatography with diode array detection. Histamine levels were detected in 352 (7.6%) samples, with a maximum of 4,110 mg kg-1 and mean values of 908.9 ± 1,226.79 and 344.01 ± 451.18 mg kg-1 for fresh and processed fish samples, respectively. No histamine levels were found in canned tuna and smoked fish samples in contrast to most of the data reported in the literature. A low percentage (2.79%) of noncompliant samples was found. The highest mean values were found during 2011 and 2015 for fresh and processed fish samples, respectively, showing a significant (P < 0.05) difference between the sampling years. The histamine contents found in fresh fish samples were significantly higher (P < 0.05) than those of processed samples. Most of the positive samples came from street vendors, suggesting the need to improve inspection measures in these commercial categories to ensure fish product safety

    Advances in Technologies for Highly Active Omega-3 Fatty Acids from Krill Oil: Clinical Applications

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    Euphausia superba, commonly known as krill, is a small marine crustacean from the Antarctic Ocean that plays an important role in the marine ecosystem, serving as feed for most fish. It is a known source of highly bioavailable omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid). In preclinical studies, krill oil showed metabolic, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective and chemo preventive effects, while in clinical trials it showed significant metabolic, vascular and ergogenic actions. Solvent extraction is the most conventional method to obtain krill oil. However, different solvents must be used to extract all lipids from krill because of the diversity of the polarities of the lipid compounds in the biomass. This review aims to provide an overview of the chemical composition, bioavailability and bioaccessibility of krill oil, as well as the mechanisms of action, classic and non-conventional extraction techniques, health benefits and current applications of this marine crustacean

    Unfolding IGDQ peptides for engineering motogenic interfaces

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    Extracellular matrix (ECM)-mimicking surfaces are pivotal tools in understanding adherent cell physiopathology. In this sense, we have recently reported on a discrete set of ECM-mimicking SAMs, among which only those exposing IGDQ peptide-alkanethiols sustain the adhesion of MDA-MB-231 cells by triggering FAK phosphorylation and peculiarly induce the migration of individual cancer cells on the subcentimeter scale. Starting from the experimentally observed relationship among the SAM composition, organization, and biological response, a systematic computational characterization aided in pinpointing the atomistic details through which specific composition and organization achieve the desired biological responsiveness. Specifically, the solvent, number and type of peptides, and presence or absence of surface fillers were accurately considered, creating representative model SAMs simulated by means of classical molecular dynamics (MD) with a view toward unravelling the experimental evidence, revealing how the conformational and structural features of these substrates dictate the specific motogenic responses. Through complementary experimental and computational investigations, it clearly emerges that there exists a distinct and precise mutual interaction among IGDQ-peptides, the surface fillers, and Au, which controls the structural properties of the ECM-mimicking SAMs and thus their motogenic potential

    Specific TP53 and/or Ki-ras mutations as independent predictors of clinical outcome in sporadic colorectal adenocarcinomas: results of a 5-year Gruppo Oncologico dell'Italia Meridionale (GOIM) prospective study.

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    BACKGROUND: Although Ki-ras and TP53 mutations have probably been the genetic abnormalities most exhaustively implicated and studied in colorectal cancer (CRC) progression, their significance in terms of disease relapse and overall survival has not yet clearly been established. PATIENTS AND METHODS: A prospective study was carried out on paired tumor and normal colon tissue samples from a consecutive series of 160 previously-untreated patients, undergoing resective surgery for primary operable sporadic CRC. Mutations within the TP53 (exons 5-8) and Ki-ras (exon 2) genes were detected by PCR-SSCP analyses following sequencing. RESULTS: Mutation analyses of exons 5 to 8 of the TP53 gene showed mutations in 43% (68/160) of the cases, while mutation analyses of exon 2 of the Ki-ras gene showed mutations in 46% (74/160) of the cases. Multivariate analyses showed that clinical outcome were strongly associated with the presence of specific TP53 mutations in L3 domain alone (only in DFS) or in combination with specific Ki-ras mutations at codon 13. CONCLUSION: Specific TP53 mutations in L3 domain alone (only in DFS) or in combination with specific Ki-ras mutations at codon 13 are associated with a worse prognosis in sporadic CRC

    A headlight on liquid biopsies: a challenging tool for breast cancer management

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    Breast cancer is the most frequent carcinoma and second most common cause of cancer-related mortality in postmenopausal women. The acquisition of somatic mutations represents the main mechanism through which cancer cells overcome physiological cellular signaling pathways (e.g., PI3K/Akt/mTOR, PTEN, TP53). To date, diagnosis and metastasis monitoring is mainly carried out through tissue biopsy and/or re-biopsy, a very invasive procedure limited only to certain locations and not always feasible in clinical practice. In order to improve disease monitoring over time and to avoid painful procedure such as tissue biopsy, liquid biopsy may represent a new precious tool. Indeed, it represents a basin of “new generation” biomarkers that are spread into the bloodstream from both primary and metastatic sites. Moreover, elevated concentrations of circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) as well as circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have been found in blood plasma of patients with various tumor types. Nowadays, several new approaches have been introduced for the detection and characterization of CTCs and ctDNA, allowing a real-time monitoring of tumor evolution. This review is focused on the clinical relevance of liquid biopsy in breast cancer and will provide an update concerning CTCs and ctDNA utility as a tool for breast cancer patient monitoring during the course of disease

    Fatty Acids Composition of Stomach Oil of Scopoli’s Shearwater (Calonectris diomedea) from Linosa’s Colony

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    Calonectris diomedea is a Procellariforms seabird having a very representative colony in Linosa Island (Southern Italy). The adult forms of C. diomedea produce a pasty oil from their proven- triculus to feed their chicks during the rearing period. In this work, we examined the fatty acids composition of the stomach oil of C. diomedea from Linosa Island by gas chromatography with flame ionization detection (GC-FID). The samples were collected at 20 and 70 days after hatching. Twenty different fatty acids (FAs) were identified. Saturated fatty acids (SFA) were the most abundant in percentage (41.6%) at day 20 followed by polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA, 38.7%) and monounsat- urated fatty acids (MUFA, 19.7%). MUFAs were the most abundant in samples collected at day 70 (53.8%), followed by SFAs (36.6%) and PUFAs (9.8%). Oleic acid (C18:1ω9) in the samples on day 70 was 4 times higher than that in the samples on day 20. The Principal Component Analysis (PCA) verified a clear separation of the stomach oil samples in two groups, according to the day of sampling. The results obtained confirm the role of FAs analysis of stomach oil to understand the ecology and breeding behaviour of C. diomedea, highlighting a resemblance with signatures recorded in marine organisms of Linosa Island

    Detection and quantification of mammaglobin in the blood of breast cancer patients: can it be useful as a potential clinical marker? Preliminary results of a GOIM (Gruppo Oncologico dell'Italia Meridionale) prospective study.

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    BACKGROUND: Mammaglobin is expressed mainly in mammary tissue, overexpressed in breast cancer (BC) and rarely in other tissue. The aim of this study was to assess the sensitivity and specificity of transcript MGB1 detection and to evaluate the role of MGB1 as potential clinical marker for the detection of disseminated cancer cells in the blood of BC patients. PATIENTS AND METHODS: A consecutive series of 23 BC tissues, 36 peripheral blood BC samples and 35 healthy peripheral blood samples was prospectively recruited to investigate MGB1 expression by means of a quantitative Real Time RT-PCR assay. RESULTS: MGB1 overexpression in tissue samples of BC patients is significantly associated only with high level of Ki67 (P <0.05). None of the samples from peripheral blood of 35 healthy female individuals were positive for MGB1 transcript. In contrast MGB1 mRNA expression was detected in three of 36 (8%) peripheral blood of BC patients. CONCLUSIONS: Our preliminary results demonstrate that the detection of MGB1 transcript in peripheral blood of BC patients was specific but with low sensitivity. MGB1 overexpression by itself or in combination with Ki67 might be considered an index of BC progression

    Targeting apoptosis in solid tumors: the role of bortezomib from preclinical to clinical evidence.

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    The ubiquitin-proteasome pathway is the main proteolytic system present in the nucleus and cytoplasm of all eukaryotic cells. Apoptosis activation induced by ubiquitin-proteasome pathway inhibition makes the proteasome a new target of anticancer therapy. Bortezomib is the first proteasome inhibitor to be approved by the US FDA; in 2003 as a third line and in 2005 as a second line therapy for the treatment of multiple myeloma only. This review focuses on the use of bortezomib, not only in its therapeutic role but also, more specifically, in its biologic role and discusses the most recent applications of the drug in solid tumors, both at a preclinical and clinical level
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