Mitochondrial network of cancer cells



We study the molecular mechanisms by which mitochondria regulate cell death in models of mitochondrial DNA diseases, muscular dystrophies and tumors. We are characterizing the composition and regulation of the permeability transition pore, a mitochondrial channel whose opening induces cell death, and we are investigating how mitochondrial metabolism contributes to tumorigenesis.


5 recent publications

  • Masgras I, Ciscato F, Brunati AM, Tibaldi E, Indraccolo S, Curtarello M, Chiara F, Cannino G, Papaleo E, Lambrughi M, Guzzo G, Gambalunga A, Pizzi M, Guzzardo V, Rugge M, Vuljan SE, Calabrese F, Bernardi P, Rasola A (2017) Absence of neurofibromin induces an oncogenic metabolic switch via mitochondrial ERK-mediated phosphorylation of the chaperone TRAP1. Cell Reports 18:659-672
  • Bernardi P, Rasola A, Forte M, Lippe G (2015) The mitochondrial permeability transition pore: channel formation by F-ATP synthase, integration in signal transduction and role in pathophysiology. Physiol Rev 95:1111–1155
  • Carraro, M, Giorgio, V., Šileikytė, J.,  Sartori, G., Forte, M., Lippe, G., Zoratti, M, Szabò, I. and Bernardi, P. (2014) Channel Formation by Yeast F-ATP Synthase and the Role of Dimerization in the Mitochondrial Permeability Transition, J Biol Chem 23, 15980-1598
  • Sciacovelli M, Guzzo G, Morello V, Frezza C, Zheng L, Nannini N, Calabrese F, Laudiero G, Esposito F, Landriscina M, Defilippi P, Bernardi P, Rasola A (2013) The mitochondrial chaperone TRAP1 promotes neoplastic growth by inhibiting succinate dehydrogenase. Cell Metab 17:988-999
  • Giorgio, V., von Stockum, S., Antoniel, M., Fabbro, A., Fogolari, F., Forte, M., Glick, G.D., Petronilli, V., Zoratti, M.,  Szabó, I., Lippe, G.,  and Bernardi, P. (2013) Dimers of Mitochondrial ATP Synthase Form the Permeability Transition Pore, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 110, 5887-5892



  • AIRC (Italian Association for Cancer Research)
  • Telethon, Italy
  • Università di Padova
  • Fondation Leducq, France
  • Children's Tumor Foundation, USA
  • Neurofibromatosis Therapeutic Acceleration Program, USA