1) OBL – Overview

Orthopaedic Biotechnology Lab

Director: Dr. Laura De Girolamo



The research program of the Orthopaedic Biotechnology Lab (OBL) is aimed at translating the basic research into the clinical practice, bridging the gap between technical innovation and therapeutic application. The group deals with basic, pre-clinical and clinical research in musculoskeletal regenerative medicine, with the main goal to investigate the therapeutic abilities of Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells and their derived products, such as microvescicles and secretome. Osteoarthritis, intervertebral disc disease, tendon disorders, rheumatoid arthritis and bone metastases represent the main research area of the Lab.

Starting from the investigation over the biochemical and genetic pathological changes underling the pathogenesis and the progress of these musculoskeletal diseases, the goal of the Lab is to develop innovative biological solutions for their treatment through the application of in vitro and in vivo models. In addition, testing commercially available devices and products for regenerative medicine and supporting clinical trials in this field represent a further bridge between basic science and therapeutic applications, moving from theories into actions. This activity is carried on in collaboration with the REGAIN (REgenerative GAleazzi INstitute) project.

The laboratory staff consists of biologists, biotechnologists and pharmacists with experience in isolation, culture and characterization of human chondrocytes, intervertebral disc cells, synoviocytes, tenocytes, peripheral blood mononuclear cells and mesenchymal stem cells from bone marrow, adipose tissue and tendon, as well as personnel with experience in small animal models and clinical trials. OBL is equipped with the major items required for molecular and cell biology activities. Basic and pre-clinical studies are conducted using flow cytometry, histology, immunohistochemistry, immunofluorescence, real time PCR (Sybr Green and TaqMan® probes), SNPs detection through PCR-RFLP assay or TaqMan® SNPs assays, siRNA gene silencing, Western Blot, ELISA and biochemical assays.

The laboratory faculty actively seek research grants from public and private entities. The laboratory welcomes collaborative research endeavors with other research centers/institute and private industry to sponsor independent research studies on the safety and efficacy of their products.