SSD BIO/16 – Human anatomy
Research interest The research activity of Prof. Sgambati, in the last years, was and still is mainly addressed to the morpho-functional study in various cells types, tissues and organs in humans and in some animal models, in physiological, pathological and stress conditions.
In particular, the research topics are the following:

Sialic acid expression in septic kidney, in adult and fetal skeletal muscles and in breast cancer
In rat kidney, subjected to induction of sepsis, altered expression of various types of sialic acids correlated to morphological and functional changes was observed. Following pharmacological treatments, both restoration of normal expression of the sialic acids and of the renal structure and function has been shown. These studies, with further investigation, may be of help for the prevention and/or therapy against human renal sepsis, by inducing a proper production of the sialic acids or by introducing them into drug treatments.
In human skeletal muscle, changes of expression of various types of sialic acids were observed related to muscle structure and functionality undergoing changes from the embryonic development to aging. This research may help in the prevention and/or finding new therapies for muscular disorders during development or during aging.
Preliminary studies on different types of human breast carcinoma have shown changes in content and distribution of various types of sialic acids. Continuing this research, emerging findings could be of help in understanding how to improve the prevention and/or treatment in the fight against breast cancer.

VEGF expression in fetal and regenerating tissue bone
VEGF together with VEGFRs have been demonstrated to play an important role in human bone formation and suggest a differential action in human orofacial and appendicular skeleton during development. This study, with further experiments, could help in understanding the physio-pathology of the different skeletal sites and developing novel therapeutic approaches.
In cases of human mandibular hypoplasia treated with autologous bone graft from mandibular symphysis, modulation in VEGF and VEGFRs expression was observed. This could contribute to graft integration and new bone formation during
regeneration in different skeletal sites.

Neuroprotective effects of quercetin in neuroblasts
Preliminary studies on cultured human striatal neurons in stress conditions (nutrient deprivation), have shown a glycoside of quercetin, present in abundance in many plants, has a significant neuroprotective effect. Continuing this research, the results could bring out the importance of this natural substance and other related to cell survival in adverse environment, which can occur during an abnormal development or neurodegenerative disorders of the striatum.


Sialic acids, VEGF, quercetina, kidneys, skeletal muscle tissue, bone tissue, neuroblasts, breast cancer, sepsis, aging, development, regeneration.