Stefano Stifani, PhD

Stefano Stifani, PhD
Contact Information
Email address: 
stefano.stifani [at]

Research in the laboratory of Stefano Stifani has the following main goals.

1) To understand the molecular mechanisms regulating neural stem/progenitor cell (NSPC) self-renewal, proliferation and differentiation in the developing and postnatal brain, with particular focus on the cerebral cortex.
2) To characterize the molecular mechanisms underlying the growth and propagation of the most malignant form of brain cancer, termed glioblastoma.
3) To elucidate the molecular events controlling the development and neural circuit integration of diverse subtypes of motor nerve cells (motor neurons), with particular interest in cells vulnerable to degeneration in motor neuron diseases such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis.

Selected publications: 

Murthy, M., Bocking, S., Verginelli, F., and Stifani S. (2014) Transcription factor Runx1 inhibits proliferation and promotes developmental maturation in a selected population of inner olfactory nerve layer olfactory ensheathing cells. Gene. 540(2):191-200. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2014.02.038. Epub 2014 Feb 26.

Ciarapica, R., Carcarino, E., Adesso, L., De Salvo, M., Bracaglia, G., Leoncini, P.P., Dall’Agnese, A., Verginelli, F., Milano, G.M., Boldrini, R., Inserra, A., Stifani, S., Screpanti, I, Marquez, V.E., Valente, S., Mai, A., Puri, P.L., Locatelli, F., Palacios, D., Rota R. (2014) Pharmacological inhibition of EZH2 as a promising differentiation therapy in embryonal RMS. BMC Cancer. 14(1):139. doi: 10.1186/1471-2407-14-139.

Verginelli, F., Perin, A., Dali, R., Fung, K.H., Lo, R., Longatti, P., Guiot, M.C., Del Maestro, R.F., Rossi. S., di Porzio, U., Stechishin, O., Weiss, S., Stifani, S. (2013) Transcription factors FOXG1 and Groucho/TLE promote glioblastoma growth. Nature Commun. Dec 20;4:2956. doi: 10.1038/ncomms3956.

Perez-Campo, F.M., Costa, G., Lie-a-Ling, M., Stifani, S., Kouskoff, V., and Lacaud, G. (2014) MOZ-mediated repression of p16INK4a is critical for the self-renewal of neural and            hematopoietic stem cells. Stem Cells32:1591-1601. doi: 10.1002/stem.1606. Epub 2013 Dec 4.

Ciarapica, R., Methot, L., Tang, Y., Lo, R., Dali, R., Buscarlet, M., Locatelli, F., Del Sal, G., Rota, R., and Stifani, S.(2014) Prolyl isomerase Pin1 and protein kinase HIPK2 cooperate to promote cortical neurogenesis by suppressing Groucho/TLE:Hes1-mediated inhibition of neuronal differentiation. Cell Death Differ. 21(2):321-32. doi: 10.1038/cdd.2013.160. Epub 2013 Nov 22.

Ciarapica R., Bracaglia G., De Salvo M., Carcarino, E., Adesso, L., Leoncini P., Dall'Agnese        A., Walters, Z., Verginelli F., De Sio L., Boldrini R., Inserra A, Bisogno G., Rosolen A., Alaggio R., Ferrari A., Collini P., Locatelli M., Stifani S., Screpanti I., Rutella S., Yu, Q., Marquez V., Shipley, J., Valente, S., Mai, A., Miele L., Puri P.L., Locatelli F., Palacios D., and Rota, S. (2014) Polycomb group (PcG) protein EZH2 supports the survival of PAX3-FOXO1 alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma by repressing FBXO32 (Atrogin1/MAFbx). Oncogene. 33(32):4173-84. doi: 10.1038/onc.2013.471. Epub 2013 Nov 11.

Methot, L., Hermann, R., Tang, Y., Lo, R., Al-Jehani, H., Jhas, S., Svoboda, D., Slack, R.S., Barker, P.A., and Stifani, S. (2013) Functional Interaction and Antagonistic Roles of NF-kappaB and Hes6 in the Regulation of Cortical Neurogenesis. Mol Cell Biol. 33:2797-2808. doi: 10.1128/MCB.01610-12. Epub 2013 May 20.

Zusso, M., Methot, L., Lo, R., Grenhalgh, A.D., David, S., and Stifani, S. (2012) Regulation of postnatal forebrain amoeboid microglial cell proliferation and development by the transcription factor Runx1. J Neurosci. 32(33), 11285-11298.

Dastidar, S.G., Narayanan, S., Stifani, S., and D’Mello, S. (2012) TLE1 combines with FoxG1 to promote neuronal survival. J Biol Chem. 287(18):14749-14759. Epub 2012 Feb 21.

Todd, K.J., Lan-Chow-Wing, N., Salin-Cantegrel, A., Cotter, A., Zagami, C.J., Lo R., and Stifani, S. (2012) Establishment of motor neuron-V3 interneuron progenitor domain boundary in the ventral spinal cord requires Groucho-mediated transcriptional corepression. PLoS One 7(2) e31176. Epub 2012 Feb 17.

Research areas: 
Brain Tumour
Neurodegenerative Disorders
Neurodevelopmental Disorders

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The Neuro (Montreal Neurological Institute-Hospital) is a bilingual academic healthcare institution. We are a McGill research and teaching institute; delivering high-quality patient care, as part of the Neuroscience Mission of the McGill University Health Centre. We are proud to be a Killam Institution, supported by the Killam Trusts.



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