Marco Piola, PhD

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piola Marco obtained the PhD degree in Bioengineering at the Politecnico di Milano in 2013 with a thesis on the arterialization of human saphenous vein after coronary artery by-pass grafting. In 2009 he received his Master Degree in Biomedical Engineering from Politecnico di Milano. His master’s thesis dealt with the design of dynamic culture system for the in vitro mimicry of bone marrow microenvironment for the expansion of hematopoietic stem cells (Collaborations: Department of Clinical Sciences of the Sacco hospital of Milano, and the Cell Culture Lab of the Galeazzi Orthopedic Institute of Milan). He got his Bachelor Degree in Biomedical Engineering from Università degli Studi di Genova (2006). His bachelor thesis dealt with computational and image process techniques for radiological applications.
At present, he is working at the Experimental Micro and Biofluid Dynamics Lab. Marco’s research activity focuses on Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, with particular emphasis in developing and optimizing in vitro techniques and strategies for cell cultures. He has an excellent experience on designing, developing and prototyping mechanical components for cell/tissue culture systems. Moreover, he widens his expertise on biological techniques by working in strict contact with the physicians and biologists of the cell culture lab involved in his projects. Collaboration in research projects as co-investigator:
1. Vein graft disease and vascular remodelling project - Since April 2011, he has been working on developing a novel ex vivo saphenous vein organ culture for studying the role of hemodynamic forces and biochemical cues acting on human saphenous vein after coronary artery by-pass grafting (Collaborations: Laboratory of Cardiovascular Tissue Engineering (Dr. Maurizio Pesce) and the II Cardiac Surgery Unit of the Centro Cardiologico Monzino in Milan). This project has a strong multidisciplinary character, where modeling, design, experimental and biological aspects are integrated.
2. Hematopoietic stem cells niche project - During the first year of Marco’s doctoral program he worked on developing a confined flow-perfusion dynamic culture system designed for the in vitro expansion of hematopoietic stem cells preserving their multi-potency and self-renew ability. The aim was to develop a confined flow perfusion bioreactor able to host several three-dimensional porous matrices, providing a controlled hydrodynamic and nutrient transport microenvironment. He also worked on designing dynamic culture protocols for biologically testing the developed flow perfusion bioreactor, and optimizing the dynamic culture parameters.
3. Bio-fabrication of prosthetic cardiac valve project – Recently, he has been working on developing in vitro procedures for the bio-fabrication of prosthetic cardiac valve.

Selected publications

Prandi F*, Piola M*, Soncini M, Colussi C, D'Alessandra Y, Penza E, Agrifoglio M, Vinci MC, Polvani G, Gaetano C, Fiore GB, Pesce M. Adventitial vessel growth and progenitor cells activation in an ex vivo culture system mimicking human saphenous vein wall strain after coronary artery bypass grafting. PLoS One. 2015 Feb 17;10(2):e0117409. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0117409. eCollection 2015.(*Both authors equally contributed to this work)

Piola M, Soncini M, Cantini M, Sadr N, Ferrario G, Fiore GB. Design and functional testing of a multi-chamber perfusion platform for three-dimensional scaffolds The Scientific World Journal 2013, 9 pages,

Piola M*, Prandi F*, Bono N, Soncini M, Penza E, Agrifoglio M, Polvani G, Pesce M, Fiore GB. A compact and automated ex-vivo vessel culture system for the pulsatile pressure conditioning of human saphenous veins Journal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, [Epub ahead of print] doi:10.1002/term.1798.(*Both authors equally contributed to this work)

Piola M, Soncini M, Prandi F, Polvani G, Fiore GB, Pesce M. Tools and Procedures for Ex Vivo Vein Arterialization, Preconditioning and Tissue Engineering: A Step Forward to Translation to Combat the Consequences of Vascular Graft Remodeling Recent Patents On Cardiovascular Drug Discovery, 2012, 7 (3): 186-195

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