The Good, The Bad And.... The Balance. The Story of Macrophages and Inflammation: Insight from Italian Women Scientist, Professor Diana Boraschi

Date:27-04-2023   |   【Print】 【close

Italian National Research Council academician, Professor Diana Boraschi, delivered a lecture entitled "The Good, the Bad and .... the Balance. The story of macrophages and inflammation" at the Xili library of the Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced Technology (SIAT), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) on April 27th. The seminar attracted over 30 domestic and foreign scientific researchers and students.

At the outset of the lecture, Associate Researcher LI Yang provided an introduction to Prof. Diana, including her basic background information. Notably, Dr. LI was previously a student of Prof. Diana's in Italy, and in 2020 had the privilege of facilitating her introduction to China via the CAS-PIFI program. Since then, they have established a collaborative working relationship as colleagues and co-founded the Laboratory of Inflammation and Vaccines.

During the lecture, Professor Diana shared her insights on the complex roles of macrophages in inflammation. The lecture covered a range of topics related to the innate immune system, specifically the role of macrophages in maintaining tissue integrity and promoting tissue repair.

The innate immune system is the first line of defense against pathogens and has several unique features such as being a very conserved ancient defense system. Mononuclear phagocytes, including macrophages, play a vital role in pathogen-host interaction and can recognize particle size, shape, and stiffness.

The lecture also explored the role of macrophages in promoting tissue repair and their ability to switch between different activation states. The plasticity of macrophage activation is essential in distinguishing between physiological and pathological inflammation. Discriminating between the two is crucial in understanding the gene expression patterns in resolving versus persistent inflammation.

Another important topic discussed was the concept of immunological memory, specifically innate immune memory, and its role in reprogramming the innate response to a subsequent challenge. This concept has been studied in vitro models of monocyte/macrophage innate immune memory and has shown that priming can reprogram the innate response to a subsequent challenge.

Finally, the lecture concluded that modulating phagocyte functions is a very important component for the prevention and therapy of many different diseases, from infections to cancer. Understanding the innate immune system, particularly the role of macrophages, can provide insights into developing therapies that promote tissue repair and prevent pathological inflammation.

The audience was impressed by the interdisciplinary and international nature of the research and the potential of the work to impact medical treatments positively. Professor Diana's lecture provided a valuable opportunity for scientific researchers and students to learn about the latest developments in immunology and inflammation.

The lecture was followed by a Q&A session, during which the attendees had the chance to engage in a lively discussion with Professor Diana. The seminar ended successfully, and the attendees left with new insights and a deeper understanding of macrophage biology and inflammation.

At the end of Salon, on behalf of the organizer, Prof. ZHANG Peng, Deputy Director of the department of S&T development, presented Prof. Diana with a special customized souvenir, hoping that in the future, with Profs. Diana and Aldo's international innovation resources and the international frontier layout of inflammation and vaccines, SIAT will be built into a global highland for science and technology innovation.

The seminar was part of the SIAT's ongoing efforts to promote academic exchanges and collaborations with international researchers. The SIAT aims to bring together the brightest minds from around the world to address significant scientific challenges and make groundbreaking scientific discoveries.


Group photo of participants. (Photo by SIAT)


Media Contact:
ZHANG Xiaomin