Roberto Avola

Professor of Biochemistry [BIO/10]
Membership Section: Medical Biochemistry
Office: Torre Biologica, 4° piano Torre Sud, stanza 35
Email: ravola@unict.it
Phone: 095 4781150
Office Hours: Tutti i giorni, previo appuntamento email.



Roberto Avola graduated in Biological Sciences on December 1974.

  • From January 1975 up to October 1977, he was Contract Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Catania.
  • From October 1977 up to December 1982, he was Assistant Professor Biochemistry at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Catania.
  • From November 1978 up to December 1982, he was Contract Professor of Biochemistry at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Catania.
  • From December 1982 up to June 1986, he was Associated Professor of Biochemistry at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Catania.
  • From June 1986 up today, he is Full Professor of Biochemistry at the School “Faculty of Medicine” of University of Catania.
  • Since Academic year 1978-79 up today, he taught Biochemistry in many Graduate School of “Faculty of Medicine”: (Reumathology, Nefrology, -Cardiology, Sport Medicine, Pediatric Sciences, Pediatric Surgery, Medical Genetics, Endocrinology, Hemathology, Clinical Biochemistry and Clinical Pathology)
  • Since February 01th, 2013 up January 31th, 2015, was elected member of the National Board of Full Professors S.S.D. BIO/10, executive unit of the National College of Professors SSD BIO/10.
  • Since November 01th, 2014 is DEAN of Professors of Biochemistry, University of Catania.
  • Since November 01th, 2014 is DEAN of the School "Faculty of Medicine" at University of Catania; as well as he is DEAN of a lot of Specialization Schools post degree of Medical Area at University of Catania.
  • He attended in 1977 the Neurobiological Laboratory of Cell Biology at CNR in Rome directed by Professor Rita Levi Montalcini, working on some sensitive and simpathetic neurons in culture and neuroblastoma cell lines.
  • He awarded two Research Fellowship during 1980 and 1984, at the "Centre de Neurochimie" of CNRS in Strasbourg, attending a Research Project about the study of the endogeneous syntesis of choline by radiolabelled precusors in neuronal and glial cell cultures and of CDP-choline effects on cultured neuronal and glial cell metabolism.
  • He is Member of: "Italian Society of Experimental Biology” (SIBS), " Italian Society of Biochemistry" (SIB), " Italian society of Neuroscience" (SINS).
  • He is also member of: "European Society for Neurochemistry" (ESN), "International Society for Neurochemistry" (ISN), "International Society for Developmental Neuroscience" (ISDN).
  • Roberto Avola participated actively to several national and international meetings; in addition he is author of  approximately 130 scientific publications on qualified international journals with impact factor.

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ACADEMIC YEAR 2019/2020


ACADEMIC YEAR 2018/2019


ACADEMIC YEAR 2017/2018


ACADEMIC YEAR 2016/2017


ACADEMIC YEAR 2015/2016

  1.  Primary rat astroglial cells cultures.
  2.  neuroblastoma and glioblastoma cells cultures.
  3.  Effect of antioxidant molecules [(+) thioctic acid, (+/-) thioctic acid] and choline containing compounds on proliferation and differentiation neural cell culture.
  4.  Study of anticancer molecules (e.g. bortezomib) and neuroprotective ones (e.g. thioctic acid) in in vitro model of neoplastic cell cultures.
  5.  Effect of alpha lipoic acid and choline-containing compounds, on the expression of some astroglial biomarkers during proliferation and differentiation of astrocyte cell cultures and neuroblastoma cell lines.
  6.  Effect of growth factors and steroid hormones (estrogens and glucocorticoids) on cytoskeletal protein expression, as well as MAP-kinases, PARP, Caspase-3 and Annexin-5 expression (well known apoptotic markers) during proliferation and differentiation of primary astroglial cell cultures.
  7.  Evaluation of tissue transglutaminase and ciclin D1 on cell proliferation of astrocyte cultures treated with growth factors and steroid hormones, during their development differentiation, aging and apoptosis.
  8.  Effect of astroglial conditioned media on neural proliferation and differentiation; effects of growth factors (EGF, bFGF, IGF-I) on DNA and RNA labeling and ERK-1 expression on rat astrocytes mantained under various colture conditions.
  9.  Study on neural cell differentiation of rat and human Mesenchimal Steam Cells after “competence” and “progression” growth factors treatment and steroid ormones (Dexametasone ed estradiol) pretreatment. In particular, evaluation of cytoscheletal proteins expression, MAP-kinases, PARP, Caspase-3, Annexin-5 (well known apoptotic markers).
  10.  Study of colinergic precursors role on proliferation and differentiation parameters of rat astroglial cells and of adult rat Bone marrow Mesenchimal Stem cells in coltures.
  1.  Colture primarie di cellule astrogliali di ratto.
  2.  Colture di Neuroblastoma e Glioblastoma.
  3.  Studi dell’effetto di molecole antiossidanti [(+)acido tioctico, (+/-)acido tioctico] e composti contenenti colina, sui parametri proliferativi e differenziativi di cellule neurali in coltura.
  4.  Studio dell’effetto di molecole antitumorali mirate (bortezomib) e neuroprotettrici (acido tioctico) in modelli in vitro di colture cellulari di cellule neoplastiche.
  5.  Studio dell’effetto dell’acido -lipoico sul sistema nervoso centrale: modello in vitro di coltura astrocitaria.
  6.  Studio del ruolo svolto dai precursori colinergici sui parametri proliferativi e differenziativi sugli astrociti di ratto e sulle colture di cellule staminali mesenchimali adulte di ratto utilizzando avanzate tecniche di biologia molecolare.
  7.  Effetto dei medium condizionati astrogliali sulla proliferazione e differenziazione neurale; effetti dei fattori di crescita (EGF, bFGF, IGF-I) sulla sintesi di DNA, di RNA ed espressione di ERK-1 in astrociti di ratto mantenuti in varie condizioni di coltura per differenti tempi.
  8.  Effetto di fattori di crescita e di ormoni steroidei (estrogeni, glucocorticoidi) sull’espressione delle proteine citoscheletriche GFAP e Vimentina, delle MAP Kinasi, nonché sull’espressione della PARP, della Caspasi-3, dell’Annessina-5 (noti markers del processo apoptotico) in astrociti di ratto.
  9.  Valutazione dell’espressione della transglutaminasi tissutale e delle cicline sulla proliferazione cellulare nelle cellule astrogliali di ratto in coltura trattate con fattori di crescita ed ormoni steroidei, durante il loro sviluppo, differenziazione, invecchiamento ed apoptosi.
  10.  Studio sul differenziamento cellulare neurale di Cellule Staminali Mesenchimali adulte di ratto in seguito al trattamento con Fattori di crescita di “competenza e progressione” nonché al pre-trattamento con ormoni steroidei (Desametasone ed estradiolo) e successiva aggiunta di fattori di crescita. In particolare, valutazione dell’espressione di proteine citoscheletriche, delle MAP Kinasi e di tutti gli altri enzimi correlati alla cascata MAP kinasica, nonché l’espressione della PARP, della Caspasi-3, dell’Annessina-5 noti markers del processo apoptotico