Professor Giorgini’s interest in neurodegeneration research began as a senior fellow in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Washington. This work, combined with a background in genetics and model organisms, formed the basis for Professor Giorgini’s current research in neurogenetics at the University of Leicester.
Professor Giorgini started as a lecturer in the Department of Genetics in 2006, became a reader in 2012, and has been professor of neurogenetics since 2015.
Professor Giorgini’s group is interested in the biological underpinnings of neurodegenerative disease such as Parkinson's and Huntington's diseases, and more recently the mental health condition schizophrenia. While these disorders are quite distinct, they do share some common mechanisms and pathways that contribute to disease pathogenesis.
Ablation of kynurenine 3-monooxygenase rescues plasma inflammatory cytokine levels in the R6/2 mouse model of Huntington's disease. Bondulich MK Fan Y Song Y Giorgini F* Bates GP. Sci Rep. 2021 Mar 9;11(1):5484. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-84858-7.
A novel role for kynurenine 3-monooxygenase in mitochondrial dynamics. Maddison DC Alfonso-Núñez M Swaih AM Breda C Campesan S Allcock N Straatman-Iwanowska A Kyriacou CP Giorgini F*. PloS Genet. 2020 Nov 10;16(11):e1009129. Doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1009129. eCollection 2020 Nov.
RAB39B is redistributed in dementia with Lewy bodies and is sequestered within Aβ plaques and Lewy bodies. Koss DJ Bondarevaite O Adams S Leite M Giorgini F Attems J Outeiro TF. Brain Pathology 2021 Jan;31(1):120-132. doi: 10.1111/bpa.12890.
Zhang S Sakuma M Deora GS Levy CW Klausing A Breda C Read KD Edlin CD Ross BP Muelas MW Day PJ O’Hagan S Kell DB Schwarcz R Leys D Heyes DJ Giorgini F* Scrutton NS*. A brain-permeable inhibitor of the neurodegenerative disease target kynurenine 3-monooxygenase prevents accumulation of neurotoxic metabolites. Commun Biol 2019 Jul 24;2:271. doi: 10.1038/s42003-019-0520-5.
Aron R Pellegrini P Green EW Maddison DC Opoku-Nsiah K Osorio Oliveira A Wong JS Daub AC Giorgini F Finkbeiner F. Deubiquitinase Usp12 functions noncatalytically to confer neuroprotection in models of Huntington’s disease and induce neuronal autophagy. Nat Commun 2018 Oct 15;9(1):4333. doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-06888-6.
Repici M Hassanjani M Maddison DC Garção P Cimini S Patel B Szegö ÉM Straatman KR Lilley KS Borsello T Outeiro TF Panman L Giorgini F*. The Parkinson’s disease-linked protein DJ-1 associates with cytoplasmic mRNP granules during stress and neurodegeneration. Mol Neurobiol 2018 Apr 19. doi: 10.1007/s12035-018-1084-y.
Robinson SW Bourgognon JM Spiers JG Breda C Campesan S Butcher A Mallucci GR Dinsdale D Morone N Mistry R Smith TM Guerra-Martin M Challiss RAJ Giorgini F Steinert JR. Nitric oxide-mediated posttranslational modifications control neurotransmitter release by modulating complexin farnesylation and enhancing its clamping ability. PLoS Biol 2018 Apr 9;16(4):e2003611. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2003611.
Vicente Miranda H Szegő EM Oliveira LM Breda C Darendelioglu E Machado de Oliveira R Ferreira D Gomes MA Rott R Oliveira M Munari F Enguita FJ Simões T Ferreira Rodrigues E Heinrich M Martins IC Zamolo I Riess O Cordeiro C Ponces-Freire A Lashuel HA Correia Santos N Vaqueiro Lopes L Xiang W Jovin TM Penque D Engelender S Zweckstetter M Klucken J Giorgini F Quintas A Outeiro TF. Glycation potentiates α-synuclein-associated neurodegeneration in synucleinopathies. Brain 2017 May 1;140(5):1399-1419. doi: 10.1093/braiwx056.
Erhardt S Pocivavsek A Repici M Liu XC Imbeault S Maddison DC Thomas MAR Smalley JL Larsson MK Muchowski PJ Giorgini F Schwarcz R. Adaptive and Behavioral Changes in Kynurenine 3-monooxygenase Knockout Mice: Relevance to Psychotic Disorders. Biol Psych 2017; pii: S0006-3223(16)33112-2.
Breda C Sathyasaikumar KV Idrissi SS Notarangelo FM Estranero JG Moore GGL Green EW Kyriacou CP Schwarcz R Giorgini F*. Tryptophan-23-dioxygenase (TDO) inhibition ameliorates neurodegeneration by modulation of kynurenine pathway metabolites. PNAS 2016; 10;113(19):5435-40.
The genetics of neurodegenerative diseases.