+ 34 986 812 316

Laboratory of Genomics and Molecular biology,
Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnology, University of Bologna, via Irnerio 48, 40126 Bologna

epigenetic mechanisms, DNA topoisomerase, epigenetic drugs, non-B DNA, genetic diseases


cancer cell lines, primary cells, anima models


genomic mapping by ChIP, DRIP and DRIPc techniques, bioinformatics analysis of C-methylation in DNA and RNA, bioinformatics for ChIP and DRIP, high throughput compound screening, biochemical enzyme assays, qrt-PCR, siRNA, genetic transfection, analysis of cellular histone, markers and enzymes (IF, WB), Bisulfite sequencing, cell vitality (MTT), apoptosis, cell cycle analyses

Collaborations outside COST

My collaborations include joint projects with 1) chemists of my Department and others from different Universities aiming at discovering novel enzyme inhibitors; 2) US labs aiming at defining enzymes regulating non-B DNA structures such as R loops; 3) european labs to define specific steps of cellular response to DNA damage.

Short description of ongoing research projects

Our general goal is twofold: 1) the definition of novel chromatin and DNA structures regulating transcription of genes relevant to diseases such as cancers and neurological disorders of genetic origin. In particular, we are interested in non-B DNA structures, and histone modifications and enzymes affecting the stability and functions of these structures including R loops and guanine quartets; 2) the definition of the role of DNA damage and DNA repair mechanisms in transcription regulation of specific cancer-related genes. In parallel, we are also strongly committed to discover new compounds interfering with epigenetic processes or inhibiting DNA repair enzymes with potential pharmacological activities.

  1. - Marinello J, Chillemi G, Bueno S, Manzo SG, Capranico G. Antisense transcripts enhanced by camptothecin at divergent CpG-island promoters associated with bursts of topoisomerase I-DNA cleavage complex and R-loop formation. Nucleic Acids Res. 2013 Dec;41(22):10110-23. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkt778.
  2. - Bertozzi D, Marinello J, Manzo SG, Fornari F, Gramantieri L, Capranico G. The natural inhibitor of DNA topoisomerase I, camptothecin, modulates HIF-1α activity by changing miR expression patterns in human cancer cells. Mol Cancer Ther. 2014 Jan;13(1):239-48. doi: 10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-13-0729.
  3. - Manzo SG, Zhou ZL, Wang YQ, Marinello J, He JX, Li YC, Ding J, Capranico G*, Miao ZH*. Natural product triptolide mediates cancer cell death by triggering CDK7-dependent degradation of RNA polymerase II. Cancer Res. 2012 Oct 15;72(20):5363-73. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-12-1006.
  4. - Fornari F, Milazzo M, Chieco P, Negrini M, Marasco E, Capranico G, Mantovani V, Marinello J, Sabbioni S, Callegari E, Cescon M, Ravaioli M, Croce CM, Bolondi L, Gramantieri L. In hepatocellular carcinoma miR-519d is up-regulated by p53 and DNA hypomethylation and targets CDKN1A/p21, PTEN, AKT3 and TIMP2. J Pathol. 2012 Jul; 227(3):275-85. doi: 10.1002/path.3995.
  5. - Capranico G, Marinello J, Baranello L. Dissecting the transcriptional functions of human DNA topoisomerase I by selective inhibitors: implications for physiological and therapeutic modulation of enzyme activity. Biochim Biophys Acta – Rev on Cancer. 2010 Dec;1806(2): 240-50. doi:10.1016/j.bbcan.2010.06.003.
Other activities of potential interest to others

Chairman, PhD program in Cellular and molecular Biology, Bologna University Chair, Biotechnology Degree Program, Bologna University

Cost UE