Dr Nunzio Iraci


I am pursuing a more basic (fundamental) approach that focuses at the discovery of the cellular machinery controlling the mobility of small nucleic acid sequences (known to regulate the translation into protein products, and ultimately functions) from within the cell to the extracellular space/compartment. I have started from some datasets that we have generated in the laboratory in the last couple of years and now attempting to define the genetic loci; verify the functions of potential cellular binders and/or identify the molecular carriers of these mobile small nucleic acids. This is a key and strategic strand of research that will provide evidence and mechanisms whose understanding has profound implications towards both the elucidation of the pathophysiology of major neurodegenerative diseases as well as the designing of next generation therapeutics mimicking (or interfering with) the sophisticated cellular intercourse that orchestrates the shift from homeostasis to disease.

Research Focus


Neural stem cells


extracellular vesicles



Clinical conditions

Multiple sclerosis


Cell culture

chromatin immunoprecipitation assay

Fluorescence microscopy


Recombinant protein expression

reporter assay

RNA/protein extraction and quantification



Anton Enright

Christian Frezza

Associated News Items



Cossetti C, Iraci N, Mercer TR, Leonardi T, Alpi E, Drago D, Alfaro-Cervello C, Saini HK, Davis MP, Schaeffer J, Vega B, Stefanini M, Zhao C, Muller W, Garcia-Verdugo JM, Mathivanan S, Bachi A, Enright AJ, Mattick JS, Pluchino S (2014), “Extracellular Vesicles from Neural Stem Cells Transfer IFN-γ via Ifngr1 to Activate Stat1 Signaling in Target Cells.” Mol Cell Details

Smith JA, Leonardi T, Huang B, Iraci N, Vega B, Pluchino S (2014), “Extracellular vesicles and their synthetic analogues in aging and age-associated brain diseases.” Biogerontology Details


Drago D, Cossetti C, Iraci N, Gaude E, Musco G, Bachi A, Pluchino S (2013), “The stem cell secretome and its role in brain repair.” Biochimie 95(12):2271-85 Details


Cossetti C, Smith JA, Iraci N, Leonardi T, Alfaro-Cervello C, Pluchino S (2012), “Extracellular membrane vesicles and immune regulation in the brain.” Front Physiol 3:117 Details

Iacobucci I, Iraci N, Messina M, Lonetti A, Chiaretti S, Valli E, Ferrari A, Papayannidis C, Paoloni F, Vitale A, Storlazzi CT, Ottaviani E, Guadagnuolo V, Durante S, Vignetti M, Soverini S, Pane F, Foà R, Baccarani M, Müschen M, Perini G, Martinelli G (2012), “IKAROS deletions dictate a unique gene expression signature in patients with adult B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.” PLoS One 7(7):e40934 Details


Henderson MJ, Haber M, Porro A, Munoz MA, Iraci N, Xue C, Murray J, Flemming CL, Smith J, Fletcher JI, Gherardi S, Kwek CK, Russell AJ, Valli E, London WB, Buxton AB, Ashton LJ, Sartorelli AC, Cohn SL, Schwab M, Marshall GM, Perini G, Norris MD (2011), “ABCC multidrug transporters in childhood neuroblastoma: clinical and biological effects independent of cytotoxic drug efflux.” J Natl Cancer Inst 103(16):1236-51 Details

Iraci N, Diolaiti D, Papa A, Porro A, Valli E, Gherardi S, Herold S, Eilers M, Bernardoni R, Della Valle G, Perini G (2011), “A SP1/MIZ1/MYCN repression complex recruits HDAC1 at the TRKA and p75NTR promoters and affects neuroblastoma malignancy by inhibiting the cell response to NGF.” Cancer Res 71(2):404-12 Details

Marshall GM, Liu PY, Gherardi S, Scarlett CJ, Bedalov A, Xu N, Iraci N, Valli E, Ling D, Thomas W, van Bekkum M, Sekyere E, Jankowski K, Trahair T, Mackenzie KL, Haber M, Norris MD, Biankin AV, Perini G, Liu T (2011), “SIRT1 promotes N-Myc oncogenesis through a positive feedback loop involving the effects of MKP3 and ERK on N-Myc protein stability.” PLoS Genet 7(6):e1002135 Details

Porro A, Iraci N, Soverini S, Diolaiti D, Gherardi S, Terragna C, Durante S, Valli E, Kalebic T, Bernardoni R, Perrod C, Haber M, Norris MD, Baccarani M, Martinelli G, Perini G (2011), “c-MYC oncoprotein dictates transcriptional profiles of ATP-binding cassette transporter genes in chronic myelogenous leukemia CD34+ hematopoietic progenitor cells.” Mol Cancer Res 9(8):1054-66 Details


Chen L, Iraci N, Gherardi S, Gamble LD, Wood KM, Perini G, Lunec J, Tweddle DA (2010), “p53 is a direct transcriptional target of MYCN in neuroblastoma.” Cancer Res 70(4):1377-88 Details

Marshall GM, Gherardi S, Xu N, Neiron Z, Trahair T, Scarlett CJ, Chang DK, Liu PY, Jankowski K, Iraci N, Haber M, Norris MD, Keating J, Sekyere E, Jonquieres G, Stossi F, Katzenellenbogen BS, Biankin AV, Perini G, Liu T (2010), “Transcriptional upregulation of histone deacetylase 2 promotes Myc-induced oncogenic effects.” Oncogene 29(44):5957-68 Details

Porro A, Chrochemore C, Cambuli F, Iraci N, Contestabile A, Perini G (2010), “Nitric oxide control of MYCN expression and multi drug resistance genes in tumours of neural origin.” Curr Pharm Des 16(4):431-9 Details

Porro A, Haber M, Diolaiti D, Iraci N, Henderson M, Gherardi S, Valli E, Munoz MA, Xue C, Flemming C, Schwab M, Wong JH, Marshall GM, Della Valle G, Norris MD, Perini G (2010), “Direct and coordinate regulation of ATP-binding cassette transporter genes by Myc factors generates specific transcription signatures that significantly affect the chemoresistance phenotype of cancer cells.” J Biol Chem 285(25):19532-43 Details


Liu T, Tee AE, Porro A, Smith SA, Dwarte T, Liu PY, Iraci N, Sekyere E, Haber M, Norris MD, Diolaiti D, Della Valle G, Perini G, Marshall GM (2007), “Activation of tissue transglutaminase transcription by histone deacetylase inhibition as a therapeutic approach for Myc oncogenesis.” Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 104(47):18682-7 Details