Post Doctoral Research Associate
After completing an undergraduate in Biotechnology at the University of Milano-Bicocca, Carola Maria Morell joined Professor Strazzabosco’s Lab (Yale University, USA and University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy) as a Postgraduate Fellow, to investigate the pathogenic mechanisms of genetically transmitted cholangiopathies and the processes regulating liver repair. She was awarded a PhD fellowship from the Italian Ministry of University and Research in 2011 to further continue her studies on liver physio-pathology. During her PhD she investigated liver repair and regeneration mechanisms during the progression of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), defining a regulatory role for Notch signalling. In 2015 she joined Professor Ludovic Vallier’s Lab at the Wellcome Trust MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute to pursue postdoctoral research focused on in vitro liver disease modelling by taking advantage of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). Her primary aim is to establish a 3D platform suitable for hIPSC derived liver cells as a novel tool to define the mechanisms by which the hepatic damage progresses toward end stage liver disease during the evolution of NAFLD. The possibility to study the evolution of NAFLD in a human cellular model holds great potential in defining the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in disease evolution and progression, while also providing a new platform for drug screening.
Locatelli L, Cadamuro M, Spirli C, Fiorotto R, Lecchi S, Morell CM, Popov Y, Scirpo R, De Matteis M, Ameduni M, Pietrobattista A, Torre G, Schuppan D, Fabris L, Strazzabosco M. (2016) Macrophage recruitment by fibrocystin-defective biliary epithelial cells promotes portal fibrosis in congenital hepatic fibrosis. Hepatology. Mar; 63(3):965-82. doi: 10.1002/hep.28382.
Morell CM and Strazzabosco M.(2014) Notch signaling and new therapeutic options in liver disease. J Hepatol. Apr; 60(4):885-90
Morell CM, Fiorotto R, Fabris L, Strazzabosco M. (2013) Notch signalling beyond liver development: Emerging concepts in liver repair and oncogenesis. Clin Res Hepatol Gastroenterol. Nov; 37(5):447-54.
Morell CM, Fabris L, Strazzabosco M. (2013) Vascular Biology of the Biliary Epithelium. J Gastroenterol Hepatol. Aug; 28 Suppl 1:26-32.
Spirli C, Locatelli L, Morell CM, Fiorotto R, Morton SD, Cadamuro M, Fabris L, Strazzabosco M.(2013) Protein kinase A-dependent pSer675 -β-catenin, a novel signaling defect in a mouse model of congenital hepatic fibrosis. Hepatology. Nov;58(5):1713-23.
Fiorotto R, Raizner A, Morell CM, Torsello B, Scirpo R, Fabris L, Spirli C, Strazzabosco M. (2013) Notch signaling regulates tubular morphogenesis during repair from biliary damage in mice. J Hepatol. Jul; 59(1):124-30.
Spirli C, Morell CM, Locatelli L, Okolicsanyi S, Ferrero C, Kim AK, Fabris L, Fiorotto R, Strazzabosco M.(2012) Cyclic AMP/PKA-dependent paradoxical activation of Raf/MEK/ERK signaling in polycystin-2 defective mice treated with Sorafenib. Hepatology. Dec; 56(6):2363-74.
Spirli C, Locatelli L, Fiorotto R, Morell CM, Fabris L, Pozzan T, Strazzabosco M. (2012) Altered store operated calcium entry increases cyclic 3′,5′-adenosine monophosphate production and extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1 and 2 phosphorylation in polycystin-2-defective cholangiocytes”. Hepatology. Mar;55(3):856-68.
Areas of expertise
Liver, chronic liver disease, hepatocytes, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, stem cells