Michigan State University

College of Social Science

Human Development Initiative

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The Human Development Initiative, begun in 2009, is a community of scholars throughout the university interested in development across the lifespan. The initiative creates venues where scholars involved in cutting-edge research in the social and health sciences (including genetics, neuroscience, and psychosocial development) can focus on the intersections between their own work and that of other researchers. We invite faculty and graduate students to join us at our bi-weekly brown bag speaker series and our fall and spring colloquia.

Amalfitano Andrea Amalfitano
Endowed Professor
Ph.D. Michigan State University

Research Statement
Research in the Amalfitano laboratory has focused upon determining the feasibility of gene transfer to cure human genetic and non-genetic diseases, and to eventually translate that knowledge into the clinical realm. They utilize multiple modalities in their investigations and study a variety of disease models. For example, all gene therapies will rely upon a vector to "deliver" the required genetic information into an appropriate target cell. To address this need, they have developed a uniquely improved gene transfer vector, one that is derived from a simple cold virus, (adenovirus). They find that this vector can safely and efficiently deliver genetic information into a variety of organs in a living individual. His lab has pioneered research into the potential for gene therapy to treat one of the most devastating forms of muscular dystrophy, known as Pompe disease, which is a musculoskeletal and cardiac disease that can rapidly kill babies in the first years of life. In 1999, they were the first group to demonstrate that a single injection of our modified gene transfer vector into animal models of Pompe disease could result in a rapid reversal of pathology in all muscles of the animal.

Research Publications    
2009Seregin SS, Appledorn DM, McBride AJ, Schuldt NJ, Aldhamen YA, Voss T, Wei J, Bujold M, Nance W, Godbehere S, Amalfitano A. Transient pretreatment with glucocorticoid ablates innate toxicity of systemically delivered adenoviral vectors without reducing efficacy. Mol Ther. 2009 Apr;17(4):685-96. Epub 2009 Jan 27.
2009Motyl KJ, Botolin S, Irwin R, Appledorn DM, Kadakia T, Amalfitano A, Schwartz RC, McCabe LR. Bone inflammation and altered gene expression with type I diabetes early onset. J Cell Physiol. 2009 Mar;218(3):575-83.
2008Gabitzsch ES, Xu Y, Yoshida LH, Balint J, Gayle RB, Amalfitano A, Jones FR. A preliminary and comparative evaluation of a novel Ad5 [E1-, E2b-] recombinant-based vaccine used to induce cell mediated immune responses. Immunol Lett. 2009 Jan 29;122(1):44-51. Epub 2008 Dec 13.
2008Appledorn DM, Kiang A, McBride A, Jiang H, Seregin S, Scott JM, Stringer R, Kousa Y, Hoban M, Frank MM, Amalfitano A. Wild-type adenoviruses from groups A-F evoke unique innate immune responses, of which HAd3 and SAd23 are partially complement dependent. Gene Ther. 2008 Jun;15(12):885-901. Epub 2008 Feb 21.
2008Appledorn DM, Seregin S, Amalfitano A. Adenovirus vectors for renal-targeted gene delivery. Contrib Nephrol. 2008;159:47-62. Review.
2008Appledorn DM, McBride A, Seregin S, Scott JM, Schuldt N, Kiang A, Godbehere S, Amalfitano A. Complex interactions with several arms of the complement system dictate innate and humoral immunity to adenoviral vectors. Gene Ther. 2008 Dec;15(24):1606-17. Epub 2008 Jul 10.
2008Appledorn DM, Patial S, McBride A, Godbehere S, Van Rooijen N, Parameswaran N, Amalfitano A. Adenovirus vector-induced innate inflammatory mediators, MAPK signaling, as well as adaptive immune responses are dependent upon both TLR2 and TLR9 in vivo. J Immunol. 2008 Aug 1;181(3):2134-44.