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Dott.ssa Valentina Scarpetta



Prof. Marco Sassoè

Tesi di dottorato


Consistence with the knowledge that the ChP plays a crucial role in enhancing the overall brain inflammation typical of aged mice, it is important to identify the underlying mechanisms guiding its aging process and how they can affect its functionality. To better characterize this process, I will focus on two independent hallmarks of the aged brain:

MITOCHONDRIAL ALTERATIONS. To identify functional differences linked to aging in the mitochondria of ChP epithelial cells, I will analyse fundamental mitochondrial properties at the morphological, molecular and functional levels. With the help of a multi-tiered approach, ranging from electron microscopy to 2-photon microscopy, I will compare mitochondrial morphology, dynamics and membrane potential in young and aged animals. I also plan to investigate how mitochondria are involved in cell responses to various stressful stimuli and whether these responses change throughout lifetime.
SEROTONIN/KYNURENINE EFFECTS ON THE CHOROID PLEXUS. To understand whether and how tryptophan metabolites play a role in the ChP aging and how they modulate the spontaneous intracellular calcium transients typical of ChP epithelial cells, I plan on using 2-photon microscopy on whole ChP explants. In particular, I aim at understand whether the spontaneous intracellular calcium transients change during adulthood and whether their sensitivity to serotonin and tryptophan metabolites (e.g kynurenine) may change during aging. At the same time, I plan on analysing local and peripheral neuro-inflammatory models to identify how the tryptophan metabolites regulates the ChP during aging, how their activity changes over time and whether their sensitivity to selective pro-inflammatory states may be involved in the onset of the aging process.

Attività di ricerca

PhD program in Heidelberg

  • PhD Initial Course - German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), June 9-18th 2021
  • Progress in Cancer Research (PiCR) - (30 Lectures), German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg (DKFZ)
  • Seminar Series - German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg (DKFZ), Neuronal Signaling and Morphogenesis (A320), every Wednesday.
  • 1st TAC meeting - Written report and oral presentation, May 17 2021


  • "From neural cell excitability to brain circuit recording, visualization and manipulation"F. Ferrini,B. Sacchetti,S. Bovetti, E. Hoxha. - Toolbox Course, February 1st - 4th - 8th - 11th 2021
  • "Basic Concepts of Statistics"A. Ricotti - Toolbox Course,  January 25th - 26th 2021.


  • "Introduction to Research methodology" - D. Romano - Toolbox Course, December 4th - 11th - 18th 2020.
  • "Clinicalmethodological and theoretical aspects of Translational and Cognitive Neuroscience"A. Berti, A. Chiò, M. Giustetto - Toolbox Course, November 27th 2020.
  • "Welcome Meeting for PhD Students XXXVI cycle"M.Sassoè - Webinar, October 21st 2020.

  • TRN MINDS Campus Day on Metabolism - BioQuant, Heidelberg, November 10th 2021
  • Mouse Surgery Module - German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg (DKFZ), July 1st 2021
  • Laboratory Animal Science Course (EU Function A, FELASA) - Theoretical and Practical course, Frankurt

MOTOR NEURON DISEASES, Undestanding the pathogenic mechanisms to develop therapies - Virtual Conference, 7th-8th November 2020



Scarpetta V, Signorino E, Vercelli A, Boido M. CHARACTERIZATION OF PERIPHERAL ALTERATIONS IN A MURINE MODEL OF SPINAL MUSCULAR ATROPHY: A FOCUS ON SKELETAL MUSCLES AND SPLEEN. - MOTOR NEURON DISEASES, Undestanding the pathogenic mechanisms to develop therapies. Virtual Conference, 7th-8th November 2020.

Ultimo aggiornamento: 09/11/2021 21:59
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