The rapidly developing and fascinating field of hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) and HSC transplantation has always been my area of interest both from a clinical standpoint and a research one. In this context, I have been involved in the last 10 years in the biological and functional characterization of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC), as well as in their clinical application in the setting of HSC transplantation.

Starting from this mixed clinical and research experience, our group will continue to investigate the biology of MSC obtained both from healthy donors and patients, and their therapeutic use to optimize the outcome of HSC transplantation, in particular HSC gene therapy, and in Regenerative Medicine approaches. MSC, which are a fundamental component of the HSC niche, will be also employed in 3D models as a tool to mimic ex-vivo the BM environment in order to deepen the understanding of the biology of the HSC niche in specific diseases of interest.

Curriculum Vitae


Maria Ester BERNARDO



Permanent Staff Paediatrician, Pediatric Immunohematology Unit, San Raffaele Hospital, Milan

Project Leader, San Raffaele Telethon Institute for Gene Therapy, Milan, Italy

University of Pavia MD 2000 Medicine and Surgery
University of Pavia Specialization 2000 – 2005 Paediatrcis
University of Leiden, The Netherlands PhD 2010 HSCT and MSC
Abilitazione Scientifica Nazionale Certified as Associate Professor 2014 Paediatrics



2004-2005:        Internship at the Department of Experimental Haematology Leiden University

Medical Centre, under the supervision of Prof. W.E. Fibbe, focusing on

research projects on HSCT utilizing MSC as therapeutic support.

2005-2007:          Fellowship – Department of Paediatric Oncohematology, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Pavia.

2007-2010:          Permanent Staff Paediatrician, Department of Paediatric Oncohematology, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Pavia

March 2010:       PhD dissertation, University of Leiden, The Netherlands, Thesis: “Human mesenchymal stem cells: biological characterization and clinical application” under the supervision of Prof. W.E. Fibbe.

2010-2014:          Permanent Staff Paediatrician, Department of Hematology and Oncology, IRCCS Ospedale Pediatrico Bambino Gesù, Roma.

2010-2014:          Head of the Research Unit “Cellular Therapy” of the Laboratories of the Department of Hematology and Oncology, IRCCS Ospedale Pediatrico Bambino Gesù, Roma.

2014:                     certification as Associate Professor (Abilitazione Scientifica Nazionale) in Paediatrics.

Since 2014:          Permanent Staff Paediatrician, Project Leader, SR-TIGET, Pediatric Immunohematology Unit, San Raffaele Hospital, Milan.



–          Member of the Italian Association for Paediatric Haematology and Oncology (AIEOP),

–          Member of the American Society of Haematology (ASH)

–          Member of the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT).

–          Member of the Editorial Review Board of the journal Bone Marrow Transplantation

–          Serves as a reviewer for the following Journals: Blood, Haematologica, PlosOne, Cytotherapy, Cancer Research, Human Gene Therapy, Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation, Transplantation, Journal of Translational Medicine.



Recipient of an investigator grant from AIRC in 2009, entitled “Role of human mesenchymal stem cells in tumor angiogenesis”.

Receipient of a grant from Ministero della Salute, Bando Giovani Ricercatori 2008 entitled “Mesenchymal stem cells and cancer: toward safer cell-based therapeutic application”.

Collaborator in several national and international research project, including a European Union 6th Framework Program project (Allostem 2004-2008:“The development of immunotherapeutic strategies to treat hematological and neoplastic diseases on the basis of optimised allogeneic stem cell transplantation”) and a HO202 Project “RETHRIM” Regenerate Through Immunemodulation.



Has published 70 papers in international scientific journals, cited more than 4000 times (as of 20/2/2016). Scopus “h” index: 27.

Dr. Bernardo started her scientific career as intern student at the Department of Hematology and Oncology, Policlinico San Matteo, Pavia working on hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in pediatric patients affected by malignant and non-malignant disorders. She graduated in 2000 at University of Pavia with a thesis entitled “Immunological Reconstitution after placental stem cell transplantation” (final grade110/110 with honours) under the supervision of Prof. F. Locatelli. Thereafter, she started her Specialization in Pediatrics at University of Pavia focusing on basic and applied clinical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation research. During the Specialization she spent 1 year at the Department of Experimental Haematology Leiden University Medical Centre, The Netherlands under the supervision of Prof. W.E. Fibbe, focusing on research projects on HSCT utilizing MSC as therapeutic support. In 2010 she defended her PhD thesis at the University of Leiden under the supervision of Prof. W.E. Fibbe (PhD thesis title: “Human mesenchymal stem cells: biological characterization and clinical application”).

In 2007 she became a Permanent Staff Paediatrician at Department of Paediatric Hematology and Oncology, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Pavia. She started working as Physician Scientist focusing, on the clinical side, on novel allogeneic HSCT strategies and, on the research side, on the characterization and translational development of MSC in cell therapy approaches.

In 2010 she moved to IRCCS Ospedale Pediatrico Bambino Gesù, Department of Hematology and Oncology, Rome where she continued to work as Physician Scientist (Permanent Staff Paediatrician) and was appointed as Head of the Research Unit “Cellular Therapy” of the Laboratories of the Department of Hematology and Oncology. She coordinated the program on MSC development and translational application in cellular therapy approaches at this Department which performs the largest number of allografts for pediatric patients in Italy. While on the clinical side she continued working on HSCT, in particular on the physiopathology and treatment of GvHD with innovative strategies and on approaches for facilitating haematological and immunological reconstitution after HSCT utilizing alternative sources (i.e. placental blood and peripheral blood stem cells); on the research side she was dedicated to the biological/functional characterization of MSC obtained from several hemato-oncological disorders. Moreover, she contributed to the study of the risk of malignant transformation after ex-vivo expansion of MSC and to the definition of novel culture supplements for the expansion of MSC.

Dr Bernardo has been an active member of the EBMT Developmental Committee, a European consortium devoted to the clinical application of MSC. Through this network, she has been involved in several European Phase I/II clinical trials for the utilization of MSC in the context of HSCT (engraftment support, treatment of GvHD), as well as in Regenerative Medicine, for example for the treatment of refractory Crohn’s Disease with local injections of MSC.

In 2010 she moved to San Raffaele Hospital, Milan where she took the position of Permanent Staff Pediatrician at the Immunohematology Unit, being the Coordinator of the pediatric allogeneic HSCT area, and started her clinical activity on hematopoietic stem cell-gene therapy in pediatric immunodeficiency and metabolic disorders. At SR-TIGET, she was appointed as Project Leader and she introduced MSC in the Institute with the aim to employ these cells as therapeutic support for gene therapy and for modeling and study of the HSC niche.

Research Activity

Our research activity is focused on the biological and functional characterization of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) obtained both from healthy donors and patients, as well as on their therapeutic application in the context of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and Regenerative Medicine.

MSC are adult, fibroblast-like, multipotent cells that can be isolated from multiple tissues, including bone marrow (BM), adipose tissue, umbilical cord blood and tissues. They display the capacity to differentiate into tissues of mesodermal origin, such as adipocytes, chondroblasts, and osteoblasts. MSC are a fundamental component of the hematopoietic stem cell niche where they participate to the control of homing, self-renewing, proliferation and differentiation of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPC). They also display immunomodulatory functions directed against all cells involved in the immune response, both adaptive and innate immune cells. By virtue of these latter properties, MSC can sense the surrounding microenvironment and act as switchers of inflammation through secretion of soluble factors and interactions with resident cells. Considering their fundamental role in regulation of hematopoiesis and in balancing tissue homeostasis, MSCs have been employed in phase I-II clinical trials with the aim to facilitate engraftment of HSPC and to blunt immune-mediated reactions, in particular acute Graft-versus-Host-Disease in allogeneic HSCT. Based on initial promising clinical findings, MSC anti-inflammatory therapy is being considered as a novel and effective therapeutic option in the rapidly emerging field of Regenerative Medicine with the aim to repair damaged tissues. In the next years, we will concentrate on identifying and testing different strategies, which take advantage of the HSC-supportive properties of MSC, to further optimize the outcome of HSCT, and in particular of HSC-gene therapy. Both the co-infusion in vivo of MSC to prevent graft failure and facilitate engraftment of gene-modified HSC, and the ex-vivo maintenance/expansion of gene-modified HSC in a bioreactor-based 3D system to increase the number and fitness of gene-modified HSC will be tested. The results of these studies may turn out to be crucial for the optimization of the clinical application of HSC-gene therapy. Moreover, the 3D scaffold-based perfusion system will be employed as tools to mimic ex-vivo the main components of the BM environment in order  to deepen the understanding of the biology of the HSC niche in specific diseases of interest.


Original Research Articles

  1. Ciccocioppo R, Cangemi GC, Kruzliak P, Gallia A, Betti E, Badulli C, Martinetti M, Cervio M, Pecci A, Bozzi V, Dionigi P, Visai L, Gurrado A, Alvisi C, Picone C, Monti M, Bernardo ME, Gobbi P, Corazza GR. Ex vivo immunosuppressive effects of mesenchymal stem cells on Crohn’s disease mucosal T cells are largely dependent on indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase activity and cell-cell contact. Stem Cell Res Ther. 2015 Jul 24;6:137.
  2. Algeri M, Conforti A, Pitisci A, Starc N, Tomao L, Bernardo ME, Locatelli F. Mesenchymal Stromal Cells and Chronic Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Immunol Lett. 2015 Jul 10; 168(2):191-200.
  3. Rossi F, Bellini G, Tortora C, Bernardo ME, Luongo L, Conforti A, Starc N, Manzo I, Nobili B, Locatelli F, Maione S. CB(2) and TRPV(1) receptors oppositely modulate in vitro human osteoblast activity. Pharmacol Res. 2015 Jun 25;99:194-201.
  4. Mantelli M, Avanzini MA, Rosti V, Ingo DM, Conforti A, Novara F, Arrigo G, Boni M, Zappatore R, Lenta E, Moretta A, Acquafredda G, de Silvestri A, Cirillo V, Cicchetti E, Algeri M, Strocchio L, Vinti L, Starc N, Biagini S, Sirleto P, Bernasconi P, Zuffardi O, Maserati E, Maccario R, Zecca M, Locatelli F, Bernardo ME. Comprehensive characterization of mesenchymal stromal cells from patients with Fanconi anaemia. Br J Haematol 2015 Sep;170(6):826-36.
  5. Conforti A, Taranta A, Biagini S, Starc N, Pitisci A, Bellomo F, Cirillo V, Locatelli F, Bernardo ME, Emma F. Cysteamine treatment restores the in vitro ability to differentiate along the osteoblastic lineage of mesenchymal stromal cells isolated from bone marrow of a cystinotic patient. J Transl Med. 2015 May 7;13:143.
  6. Airoldi I, Bertaina A, Prigione I, Zorzoli A, Pagliara D, Cocco C, Meazza R, Loiacono F, Lucarelli B, Bernardo ME, Barbarito G, Pende D, Moretta A, Pistoia V, Moretta L, Locatelli F. γδ T-cell reconstitution after HLA-haploidentical hematopoietic transplantation depleted of TCR-αβ+/CD19+ lymphocytes. Blood. 2015 Apr 9;125(15):2349-58.
  7. Pascucci L, Coccè V, Bonomi A, Ami D, Ceccarelli P, Ciusani E, Viganò L, Locatelli A, Sisto F, Doglia SM, Parati E, Bernardo ME, Muraca M, Alessandri G, Bondiolotti G, Pessina A. Paclitaxel is incorporated by mesenchymal stromal cells and released in exosomes that inhibit in vitro tumor growth: a new approach for drug delivery. J Control Release. 2014 Oct 28;192:262-70.
  8. Rosado MM, Bernardo ME, Scarsella M, Conforti A, Giorda E, Biagini S, Cascioli S, Rossi F, Guzzo I, Vivarelli M, Dello Strologo L, Emma F, Locatelli F, Carsetti R. Inhibition of B-cell proliferation and antibody production by mesenchymal stromal cells is mediated by T cells. Stem Cells Dev. 2015 Jan 1;24(1):93-103.
  9. Conforti A, Scarsella M, Starc N, Giorda E, Biagini S, Proia A, Carsetti R, Locatelli F, Bernardo ME. Microvesicles derived from mesenchymal stromal cells are not as effective as their cellular counterpart in the ability to modulate immune responses in vitro. Stem Cells Dev. 2014; 23:2591-9.
  10. Bertaina A, Merli P, Rutella S, Pagliara D, Bernardo ME, Masetti R, Pende D, Falco M, Handgretinger R, Moretta F, Lucarelli B, Brescia LP, Li Pira G, Testi M, Cancrini C, Kabbara N, Carsetti R, Finocchi A, Moretta A, Moretta L, Locatelli F. HLA-haploidentical stem cell transplantation after removal of αβ+ T and B-cells in children with non-malignant disorders. Blood. 2014; 124(5):822-6.
  11. Conforti A, Biagini S, Starc N, Proia A, Pessina A, Alessandri G, Locatelli F, Bernardo ME. Human mesenchymal stromal cells primed with paclitaxel, apart from displaying anti-tumor activity, maintain their immune regulatory functions in vitro. Cytotherapy. 2014 Jun;16(6):868-70.
  12. Avanzini MA, Bernardo ME, Novara F, Mantelli M, Poletto V, Villani L, Lenta E, Ingo DM, Achille V, Bonetti E, Massa M, Campanelli R, Fois G, Catarsi P, Gale RP, Moretta A, Aronica A, Maccario R, Acquafredda G, Lisini D, Zecca M, Zuffardi O, Locatelli F, Barosi G, Rosti V. Functional and genetic aberrations of in vitro cultured marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells of patients with classical Philadelphia-negative myeloproliferative neoplasms. Leukemia. 2014; 28(8):1742-5.
  13. Rossi F, Bernardo ME, Bellini G, Luongo L, Conforti A, Manzo I, Guida F, Cristino L, Imperatore R, Petrosino S, Nobili B, Di Marzo V, Locatelli F, Maione S. The cannabinoid receptor type 2 as mediator of mesenchymal stromal cell immunosuppressive properties. PLoS One. 2013 Nov 27;8(11):e80022.
  14. Conforti A, Biagini S, Del Bufalo F, Sirleto P, Angioni A, Starc N, Li Pira G, Moretta F, Proia A, Contoli B, Genovese S, Ciardi C, Avanzini MA, Rosti V, Lo-Coco F, Locatelli F, Bernardo ME. Biological, functional and genetic characterization of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells from pediatric patients affected by acute lymphoblastic leukemia. PLoS One. 2013 Nov 7;8(11):e76989.
  15. Ball LM,* Bernardo ME,* Roelofs H, van Tol MJ, Contoli B, Zwaginga JJ, Avanzini MA, Conforti A, Bertaina A, Giorgiani G, Jol-van der Zijde CM, Zecca M, Le Blanc K, Frassoni F, Egeler RM, Fibbe WE, Lankester AC, Locatelli F. Multiple infusions of mesenchymal stromal cells induce sustained remission in children with steroid-refractory, grade III-IV acute graft-versus-host disease. Br J Haematol. 2013 Nov;163(4):501-9.
  16. Ciccocioppo R, Bernardo ME, Russo ML, Vanoli A, Franco C, Martinetti M, Catenacci L, Giorgiani G, Zecca M, Piralla A, Baldanti F, Locatelli F, Corazza GR. Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation may restore gluten tolerance in patients with celiac disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2013 Apr;56(4):422-7.
  17. Marletta C, Valli R, Pressato B, Mare L, Montalbano G, Menna G, Loffredo G, Bernardo ME, Vinti L, Ferrari S, Di Cesare-Merlone A, Zecca M, Lo Curto F, Locatelli F, Pasquali F, Maserati E. Chromosome anomalies in bone marrow as primary cause of aplastic or hypoplastic conditions and peripheral cytopenia: disorders due to secondary impairment of RUNX1 and MPL genes. Mol Cytogenet. 2012 Oct 1;5(1):39.
  18. Ciccocioppo R, Russo ML, Bernardo ME, Biagi F, Catenacci L, Avanzini MA, Alvisi C, Vanoli A, Manca R, Luinetti O, Locatelli F, Corazza GR. Mesenchymal stromal cell infusions as rescue therapy for corticosteroid-refractory adult autoimmune enteropathy. Mayo Clin Proc. 2012 Sep;87(9):909-14.
  19. Bernardo ME, Piras E, Vacca A, Giorgiani G, Zecca M, Bertaina A, Pagliara D, Contoli B, Pinto RM, Caocci G, Mastronuzzi A, La Nasa G, Locatelli F. Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in thalassemia major: results of a reduced-toxicity conditioning regimen based on the use of treosulfan. Blood. 2012 Jul 12;120(2):473-6.
  20. Clave E, Lisini D, Douay C, Giorgiani G, Busson M, Zecca M, Charron D, Bernardo ME, Toubert A, Locatelli F. A low thymic function is associated with leukemia relapse in children given T-cell-depleted HLA-haploidentical stem cell transplantation. Leukemia. 2012 Aug;26(8):1886-8.
  21. Comite P, Cobianchi L, Avanzini MA, Mantelli M, Achille V, Zonta S, Ferrari C, Alessiani M, De Silvestri A, Gandolfo GM, Inverardi L, Brescia L, Pietrabissa A, Dionigi P, Locatelli F, Bernardo ME. Immunomodulatory properties of porcine, bone marrow-derived multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells and comparison with their human counterpart. Cell Mol Biol (Noisy-le-grand). 2011 Oct 15;57 Suppl:OL1600-5.
  22. Locatelli F, Vinti L, Palumbo G, Rossi F, Bertaina A, Mastronuzzi A, Bernardo ME, Rutella S, Dellabona P, Giorgiani G, Moretta A, Moretta L. Strategies to optimize the outcome of children given T-cell depleted HLA-haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Best Pract Res Clin Haematol. 2011 Sep;24(3):339-49.
  23. Achille V, Mantelli M, Arrigo G, Novara F, Avanzini MA, Bernardo ME, Zuffardi O, Barosi G, Zecca M, Maccario R. Cell-cycle phases and genetic profile of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells expanded in vitro from healthy donors. J Cell Biochem. 2011 Jul;112(7):1817-21.
  24. de Lalla C, Rinaldi A, Montagna D, Azzimonti L, Bernardo ME, Sangalli LM, Paganoni AM, Maccario R, Di Cesare-Merlone A, Zecca M, Locatelli F, Dellabona P,  Casorati G. Invariant NKT cell reconstitution in pediatric leukemia patients given HLA-haploidentical stem cell transplantation defines distinct CD4+ and CD4- subset dynamics and correlates with remission state. J Immunol. 2011 Apr 1;186(7):4490-9.
  25. Ciccocioppo R, Bernardo ME, Sgarella A, Maccario R, Avanzini MA, Ubezio C, Minelli A, Alvisi C, Vanoli A, Calliada F, Dionigi P, Perotti C, Locatelli F, Corazza GR. Autologous bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells in the treatment of fistulising Crohn’s disease. Gut. 2011 Jun;60(6):788-98.
  26. Bertaina A, Bernardo ME, Caniglia M, Vinti L, Giorgiani G, Locatelli F. Cord blood transplantation in children with haematological malignancies. Best Pract Res Clin Haematol. 2010 Jun;23(2):189-96.
  27. Bertaina A, Bernardo ME, Mastronuzzi A, La Nasa G, Locatelli F. The role of reduced intensity preparative regimens in patients with thalassemia given hematopoietic transplantation. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2010 Aug;1202:141-8.
  28. Comite P, Cobianchi L, Avanzini MA, Zonta S, Mantelli M, Achille V, De Martino M, Cansolino L, Ferrari C, Alessiani M, Maccario R, Gandolfo GM, Dionigi P, Locatelli F, Bernardo ME. Isolation and ex vivo expansion of bone marrow-derived porcine mesenchymal stromal cells: potential for application in an experimental model of solid organ transplantation in large animals. Transplant Proc. 2010 May;42(4):1341-3.
  29. Giuliani N, Lisignoli G, Novara F, Storti P, Zaffaroni N, Villa R, Sammarelli G, Agnelli L, Todoerti K, Bernardo ME, Manferdini C, Colla S, Abeltino M, Bolzoni M, Rocci A, Gabusi E, Palumbo A, Zuffardi O, Neri A, Rizzoli V. Bone osteoblastic and mesenchymal stromal cells lack primarily tumoral features in multiple myeloma patients. Leukemia. 2010 Jul;24(7):1368-70.
  30. Bernardo ME, Ball LM, Cometa AM, Roelofs H, Zecca M, Avanzini MA, Bertaina A, Vinti L, Lankester A, Maccario R, Ringden O, Le Blanc K, Egeler RM, Fibbe WE, Locatelli F. Co-infusion of ex vivo-expanded, parental MSCs prevents life-threatening acute GVHD, but does not reduce the risk of graft failure in pediatric patients undergoing allogeneic umbilical cord blood transplantation. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2011 Feb;46(2):200-7.
  31. Bernardo ME, Avanzini MA, Ciccocioppo R, Perotti C, Cometa AM, Moretta A, Marconi M, Valli M, Novara F, Bonetti F, Zuffardi O, Maccario R, Corazza GR, Locatelli F. Phenotypical/functional characterization of in vitro-expanded mesenchymal stromal cells from patients with Crohn’s disease. Cytotherapy. 2009;11(7):825-36.
  32. Avanzini MA, Bernardo ME, Cometa AM, Perotti C, Zaffaroni N, Novara F, Visai L, Moretta A, Del Fante C, Villa R, Ball LM, Fibbe WE, Maccario R, Locatelli F. Generation of mesenchymal stromal cells in the presence of platelet lysate: a phenotypic and functional comparison of umbilical cord blood- and bone marrow-derived progenitors. Haematologica. 2009 Dec;94(12):1649-60.
  33. Locatelli F, Testi AM, Bernardo ME, Rizzari C, Bertaina A, Merli P, Pession A, Giraldi E, Parasole R, Barberi W, Zecca M. Clofarabine, cyclophosphamide and etoposide as single-course re-induction therapy for children with refractory/multiple relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. Br J Haematol. 2009 Nov;147(3):371-8.
  34. Pessina A, Bonomi A, Coccè V, Bernardo ME, Cometa AM, Ferrari M, Sisto F, Cavicchini L, Locatelli F. Assessment of human herpesvirus-6 infection in mesenchymal stromal cells ex vivo expanded for clinical use. Transpl Infect Dis. 2009 Dec;11(6):491-6.
  35. Novara F, Beri S, Bernardo ME, Bellazzi R, Malovini A, Ciccone R, Cometa AM, Locatelli F, Giorda R, Zuffardi O. Different molecular mechanisms causing 9p21 deletions in acute lymphoblastic leukemia of childhood. Hum Genet. 2009 Oct;126(4):511-20.
  36. Ball LM, Bernardo ME, Locatelli F, Egeler RM. Potential role of mesenchymal stromal cells in pediatric hematopoietic SCT. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2008 Oct;42 Suppl 2:S60-6.
  37. Bernardo ME, Zecca M, Piras E, Vacca A, Giorgiani G, Cugno C, Caocci G, Comoli P, Mastronuzzi A, Merli P, La Nasa G, Locatelli F. Treosulfan-based conditioning regimen for allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation in patients with thalassaemia major. Br J Haematol. 2008 Nov;143(4):548-51.
  38. Pende D, Marcenaro S, Falco M, Martini S, Bernardo ME, Montagna D, Romeo E, Cognet C, Martinetti M, Maccario R, Mingari MC, Vivier E, Moretta L, Locatelli F, Moretta A. Anti-leukemia activity of alloreactive NK cells in KIR ligand-mismatched haploidentical HSCT for pediatric patients: evaluation of the functional role of activating KIR and redefinition of inhibitory KIR specificity. Blood. 2009 Mar 26;113(13):3119-29.
  39. Comoli P, Schilham MW, Basso S, van Vreeswijk T, Bernardo ME, Maccario R, van Tol MJ, Locatelli F, Veltrop-Duits LA. T-cell lines specific for peptides of adenovirus hexon protein and devoid of alloreactivity against recipient cells can be obtained from HLA-haploidentical donors. J Immunother. 2008 Jul-Aug;31(6):529-36.
  40. Stern M, Ruggeri L, Mancusi A, Bernardo ME, de Angelis C, Bucher C, Locatelli F, Aversa F, Velardi A. Survival after T cell-depleted haploidentical stem cell transplantation is improved using the mother as donor. Blood. 2008 Oct 1;112(7):2990-5.
  41. Le Blanc K, Frassoni F, Ball L, Locatelli F, Roelofs H, Lewis I, Lanino E, Sundberg B, Bernardo ME, Remberger M, Dini G, Egeler RM, Bacigalupo A, Fibbe W, Ringdèn O; Developmental Committee of the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation. Mesenchymal stem cells for treatment of steroid-resistant, severe, acute graft-versus-host disease: a phase II study. Lancet. 2008 May 10;371(9624):1579-86.
  42. Perotti G, Bernardo ME, Spalla M, Matti C, Stronati M, Pagani L. Rapid control of two outbreaks of Serratia marcescens in a Northern Italian neonatal intensive care unit. J Chemother. 2007 Oct;19 Suppl 2:56-60.
  43. Beluffi G, Bernardo ME, Meloni G, Spinazzola A, Locatelli F. Spinal osteomyelitis due to Aspergillus flavus in a child: a rare complication after haematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Pediatr Radiol. 2008 Jun;38(6):709-12.
  44. Locatelli F, Zecca M, Pession A, Morreale G, Longoni D, Di Bartolomeo P, Porta F, Fagioli F, Nobili B, Bernardo ME, Messina C; Italian pediatric group. The outcome of children with Fanconi anemia given hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and the influence of fludarabine in the conditioning regimen: a report from the Italian pediatric group. Haematologica. 2007 Oct;92(10):1381-8.
  45. Bernardo ME, Zaffaroni N, Novara F, Cometa AM, Avanzini MA, Moretta A, Montagna D, Maccario R, Villa R, Daidone MG, Zuffardi O, Locatelli F. Human bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells do not undergo transformation after long-term in vitro culture and do not exhibit telomere maintenance mechanisms. Cancer Res. 2007 Oct 1;67(19):9142-9.
  46. La Nasa G, Littera R, Locatelli F, Lai S, Alba F, Caocci G, Lisini D, Nesci S, Vacca A, Piras E, Bernardo ME, Di Cesare-Merlone A, Orru S, Carcassi C. The human leucocyte antigen-G 14-basepair polymorphism correlates with graft-versus-host disease in unrelated bone marrow transplantation for thalassaemia. Br J Haematol. 2007 Oct;139(2):284-8.
  47. Ball LM,* Bernardo ME,* Roelofs H, Lankester A, Cometa A, Egeler RM, Locatelli  F, Fibbe WE. Cotransplantation of ex vivo expanded mesenchymal stem cells accelerates lymphocyte recovery and may reduce the risk of graft failure in haploidentical hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation. Blood. 2007 Oct 1;110(7):2764-7.
  48. Lilleri D, Gerna G, Furione M, Bernardo ME, Giorgiani G, Telli S, Baldanti F, Locatelli F. Use of a DNAemia cut-off for monitoring human cytomegalovirus infection reduces the number of preemptively treated children and young adults receiving hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation compared with qualitative pp65 antigenemia. Blood. 2007 Oct 1;110(7):2757-60.
  49. Bernardo ME, Emons JA, Karperien M, Nauta AJ, Willemze R, Roelofs H, Romeo S, Marchini A, Rappold GA, Vukicevic S, Locatelli F, Fibbe WE. Human mesenchymal stem cells derived from bone marrow display a better chondrogenic differentiation compared with other sources. Connect Tissue Res. 2007;48(3):132-40.
  50. Comoli P, Basso S, Zecca M, Pagliara D, Baldanti F, Bernardo ME, Barberi W, Moretta A, Labirio M, Paulli M, Furione M, Maccario R, Locatelli F. Preemptive therapy of EBV-related lymphoproliferative disease after pediatric haploidentical stem cell transplantation. Am J Transplant. 2007 Jun;7(6):1648-55.
  51. Porta G, Maserati E, Mattarucchi E, Minelli A, Pressato B, Valli R, Zecca M, Bernardo ME, Lo Curto F, Locatelli F, Danesino C, Pasquali F. Monosomy 7 in myeloid malignancies: parental origin and monitoring by real-time quantitative PCR. Leukemia. 2007 Aug;21(8):1833-5.
  52. Bernardo ME, Avanzini MA, Perotti C, Cometa AM, Moretta A, Lenta E, Del Fante C, Novara F, de Silvestri A, Amendola G, Zuffardi O, Maccario R, Locatelli F. Optimization of in vitro expansion of human multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells for cell-therapy approaches: further insights in the search for a fetal calf serum substitute. J Cell Physiol. 2007 Apr;211(1):121-30.
  53. Avanzini MA, Maccario R, Locatelli F, Giebel S, Santos CD, Bernardo ME, Pagliara D, Montagna D, Longo S, Amendola G, Marconi M. Low percentages of circulating CD8(+)/CD45RA(+) human T lymphocytes expressing beta7 integrin correlate with the occurrence of intestinal acute graft-versus-host disease after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Exp Hematol. 2006 Oct;34(10):1429-34.
  54. Montagna D, Daudt L, Locatelli F, Montini E, Turin I, Lisini D, Giorgiani G, Bernardo ME, Maccario R. Single-cell cloning of human, donor-derived antileukemia T-cell lines for in vitro separation of graft-versus-leukemia effect from graft-versus-host reaction. Cancer Res. 2006 Jul 15;66(14):7310-6.
  55. Pozzi S, Lisini D, Podestà M, Bernardo ME, Sessarego N, Piaggio G, Cometa A, Giorgiani G, Mina T, Buldini B, Maccario R, Frassoni F, Locatelli F. Donor multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells may engraft in pediatric patients given either cord blood or bone marrow transplantation. Exp Hematol. 2006 Jul;34(7):934-42.
  56. Minelli A, Maserati E, Rossi G, Bernardo ME, De Stefano P, Cecchini MP, Valli R, Albano V, Pierani P, Leszl A, Sainati L, Lo Curto F, Danesino C, Locatelli F, Pasquali F. Familial platelet disorder with propensity to acute myelogenous leukemia: genetic heterogeneity and progression to leukemia via acquisition of clonal chromosome anomalies. Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2004 Jul;40(3):165-71.
  57. Maserati E, Minelli A, Menna G, Cecchini MP, Bernardo ME, Rossi G, De Filippi P, Lo Curto F, Danesino C, Locatelli F, Pasquali F. Familial myelodysplastic syndromes, monosomy 7/trisomy 8, and mutator effects. Cancer Genet Cytogenet. 2004 Jan 15;148(2):155-8.
  58. Locatelli F, Giorgiani G, Giraldi E, Castelnovi C, Stroppa P, Bernardo ME, Bonetti F, Maccario R. Cord blood transplantation in childhood. Haematologica. 2000 Nov;85(11 Suppl):26-9.

* equally contributed


Reviews, Commentaries and Book Chapters

  1. Bernardo ME, Locatelli F. Mesenchymal stromal cells in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Methods Molecular Biology, Vol. 1416, Massimiliano Gnecchi (Eds): Mesenchymal Stem Cells, 978-1-4939-3582-6. Book chapter, in press.
  2. Bernardo ME, Fibbe WE. Mesenchymal stromal cells and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Immunol Lett. 2015 Dec;168(2):215-21.
  3. Fibbe WE, Bernardo ME. Control of immune responses by mesenchymal stromal cells. Rinsho Ketsueki. 2014 Oct;55(10):2190-4.
  4. Bernardo ME, Fibbe WE. Mesenchymal stromal cells: sensors and switchers of inflammation. Cell Stem Cell. 2013 Oct 3;13(4):392-402.
  5. de Girolamo L, Lucarelli E, Alessandri G, Avanzini MA, Bernardo ME, Biagi E,  Brini AT, D’Amico G, Fagioli F, Ferrero I, Locatelli F, Maccario R, Marazzi M, Parolini O, Pessina A, Torre ML, Italian Mesenchymal Stem Cell Group. Mesenchymal stem/stromal cells: a new ”cells as drugs” paradigm. Efficacy and critical aspects in cell therapy. Curr Pharm Des. 2013;19(13):2459-73.
  6. Bernardo ME, Fibbe WE. Safety and efficacy of mesenchymal stromal cell therapy in autoimmune disorders. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2012 Aug;1266:107-17.
  7. Locatelli F, Schrappe M, Bernardo ME, Rutella S. How I treat relapsed childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Blood. 2012 Oct 4;120(14):2807-16.
  8. Daniele N, Scerpa MC, Caniglia M, Ciammetti C, Rossi C, Bernardo ME, Locatelli F, Isacchi G, Zinno F. Overview of T-cell depletion in haploidentical stem cell transplantation. Blood Transfus. 2012 Jul;10(3):264-72.
  9. Daniele N, Scerpa MC, Caniglia M, Bernardo ME, Rossi C, Ciammetti C, Palumbo G, Locatelli F, Isacchi G, Zinno F. Transplantation in the onco-hematology field: focus on the manipulation of αβ and γδT cells. Pathol Res Pract. 2012 Feb 15;208(2):67-73.
  10. Bernardo ME, Cometa AM, Locatelli F. Mesenchymal stromal cells: a novel and effective strategy for facilitating engraftment and accelerating hematopoietic recovery after transplantation? Bone Marrow Transplant. 2012 Mar;47(3):323-9.
  11. Bernardo ME, Pagliara D, Locatelli F. Mesenchymal stromal cell therapy: a revolution in Regenerative Medicine? Bone Marrow Transplant. 2012 Feb;47(2):164-71.
  12. Bernardo ME, Cometa AM, Pagliara D, Vinti L, Rossi F, Cristantielli R, Palumbo G, Locatelli F. Ex vivo expansion of mesenchymal stromal cells. Best Pract Res Clin Haematol. 2011 Mar;24(1):73-81.
  13. Bernardo ME, Locatelli F, Fibbe WE. Mesenchymal stromal cells. Ann N Y Ac