Foto del docente

Maria Pia Foschini


Department of Biomedical and Neuromotor Sciences

Academic discipline: MED/08 Pathology


Keywords: osteosarcoma pituitary adenoma central nervous system squamous cell carcinoma breast filed cancerization maxillary bone mandible glioblastoma oral cavity pleomorphic lobular carcinoma

Research activities mainly focused on head and neck, breast and central nervous system pathology.

 In situ lobular carcinoma of pleomorphic and florid type (LCIS P\F). At the moment a few data are available on its relation with invasive carcinoma. Therefore the aim of the study is to find out the relation between LCIS P\F and invasive carcinoma. The study is going on in the frame of the European Working Group on Breast Screening Pathology.

Male breast cancer: the impact of X chromosome aneusomy is under study. In addition, as Chromosome X is the site of Androgen Receptor gene and its regulators, their methylation profile is under evaluation.

Normal breast: the different expression of oestrogen, progesterone and androen receptors according to the data of the menstrual cycle is under evaluation.

Squamous cells carcinoma of the head and neck: prognostic markers in squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity; with the aim to identify those tumours with aggressive potential even at early stage. Specifically the impact of miRNA on the neoplastic progression of pre-neoplastic lesions is under evaluation.

Furthermore a series of pre-neoplastic oral lesions is under study to asses the real risk of transformation in invasive squamous cell carcinoma. This method is now in the final validation phase.



Research activities are mainly focused on endocrine and exocrine glands, head and neck and central nervous system tumours.

Breast carcinomas are under evaluation using macrosections. These macrosections (large histological sections) are proved to be useful to determine the real extent and intra-mammary growth of in situ and invasive caricnoma. Special attention is now focused on pleomorphic invasive lobular carcinoma.

Squamous cell carcinoma of the oral (OSC) cavity, even if presenting at early stage (pT1\pT2) can frequently recur and metastatize.  Furthermore the oral cavity can be affected by tumours originating from the salivary glands. The treatment of these latter tumour is mainly based on surgical resection as they do not respond to radio and or chemotherapy

The study aims at retrospectively and prospectively identifying markers transcripts to be utilized for the prediction aggressive behaviour in patients presenting OSC at early stage and in cases of salivary gland carcinomas.

In addition the impact of specific miRNA in the neoplastic tranformation and progression is under evaluation.

The genetic profile of salivary gland tumours with epithelial and myoepithelial differentiation is under evaluation.

Finally a retrospective series of osteosarcomas of the jaws is under evaluation.

CNS: In an our previous study of gene expression profiling overexpression of IGFBP-2 and CDC 20 have been identified in glioblastomas at a variant of low grade gliomas. These data have been validated by RT-qPCR and immunohistochemistry.

The project intends to find molecular markers that could have an impact on the diagnosis, prognosis, and selection of therapeutic targets for brain tumours.

The prognostic value of Ki67 in pituitary adenomas has been evaluated. This study is concluded and in press on the journal Human Pathology. Now the prognostic impact of galectin 3 on ACTH and prolactin adenomas has been evaluated and demonstrated to have a prognostic impact.

CNS: Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a frequent and very aggressive CNS tumour. The histological evaluation of GBM recurrences evidence three different morphologic patterns probably corresponding to three different vay to responde to therapy.