Research objectives and content
Stat3, a member of the STAT family of transcription factors, is involved in the signalling of several cytokines and growth factors. Since the disruption of its gene leads to embryonic lethality, to investigate its functions in vivo I plan to generate Stat3 conditional mutant mice using the Cre/loxP system, which allows to inactivate a gene in a tissue-specific or inducible manner. Mice carrying a Stat3 'floxed' allele amenable to Cre-mediated deletion will be intercrossed with transgenic mice expressing Cre in a specific tissue or in an inducible manner. In particular, I plan to analyze the effects of Stat3 inactivation in the liver, in T cells, or in all tissues but only during adult life. In addition Nestin-Cre transgenic mice, suitable to obtain adult animals mosaic for the mutation, will be used to assess the relative contribution of Stat3 to the development of different tissues.
Training content (objective, benefit and expected impact)
The definition of the role played by Stat3 in mediating the functions of several cytokines in health and disease will help to elucidate the molecular mechanisms leading to pathological conditions involving disregulated cytokines activity, and may contribute to identify specific targets to develop new therapies.
Links with industry / industrial relevance (22)