- CR1 INSERM: Immunology-Immunopathology-Immunotherapy laboratory, UMR 7211 (UPMC/CNRS), U 959 (INSERM), Director: David Klatzmann. CHU Pitié-Salpêtrière, Paris, since 01/10/2007.
- Corresponding Researcher of CONICET (Argentinean equivalent of the INSERM) since 01/10/2010.
- Degree: BIOCHEMIST (equivalent to “phamacien biologiste, BAC + 7”). Faculty of Biochemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences. National University of Rosario. Argentina, 14/04/1994.
- Postgraduate degree: PhD of the Faculty of Biochemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences. National University of Rosario, Argentina. 10/11/2000.
- HDR (“habilitation à diriger les recherches”) Pierre and Marie Curie University. 02/2011.
- Clinical activity
- Clinical biochemist at the clinical laboratory CIBIC S.A, 1994- 2000. Rosario, Argentine.
- Creation and direction of the private clinical laboratory "LABORATORIO ITUZAINGO" 1997-2001. Rosario, Argentine.
- Pre-doctoral research activity
- Basic Research in the Immunology Department. Faculty of Medicine. National University of Rosario, 1994-2000. Director Oscar Bottasso (position: teacher assistant).
- Research Training at the INSERM U365 Interferon and Cytokines, Curie Institute, Paris, July- August, 1998 and November- January, 2000. Director: Dr Jeanne Wietzerbin.
- Post-doctoral positions
- Post- doctoral position at the INSERM U546 Myelin and muscular ionic channel pathology, Hôpital Pitié Salpêtrière, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris, 2001-2003. Director: Dr. Roland Liblau (Ministry of Research contract from 04/01/2001 to30/06/2002; INSERM/FRM/JDRF fellowship from 01/07/2002 to 30/06/2003, ARSEP contract from 15/07/2003 to 15/09/2003).
- Post- doctoral position at the INSERM U563: Autoimmunity and Immunoregulation Laboratory. CHU Purpan, Toulouse, 2003-2005. Director: Dr. Roland Liblau. INSERM/FRM/JDRF fellowship from 01/10/2003 to 30/09/2004; 01/11/2004 to 31/10/2005).
- Post- doctoral position at the CNRS UMR 7087, Biology and therapy of immune pathologies, CERVI, Hôpital Pitié Salpêtrière, Paris, 2005 until now. Director: Dr. David Klatzmann, Team leader: Benoit Salomon (Université Paris VI 01/12/2005 to 31/09/2007).
I obtained my PhD in 2000 in Argentine, on the use of IFN-g as adjuvant therapy in the treatment of Trypanosoma cruzi infection in rats.
During my post-doctoral work in the team of R. Liblau we contributed to several studies addressing pancreas and brain tolerance and autoimmunity; and the manipulation of these mechanisms to induce or break tolerance.
In 2006, I joint the UMR7087, directed by D. Klatzmann, where I was recruited as CR1 INSERM in 2007. We have since been studying the biology and the therapeutic application of regulatory T cells (Tregs) in mouse models of autoimmunity and transplantation. My main contributions were i) the description of a new feedback regulatory loop by which activated CD4+ effector T cells strongly boost the expansion and suppressive activity of Tregs helping limit the development of autoimmunity. ii) Also, we showed that in NOD mice, Tregs present in the inflamed pancreas are more prone to apoptosis due to a local deficit of IL-2 and that low-dose IL-2 administration prevents and cures type 1 diabetes (T1D). iii) Finally, in a model of graft vs. host disease (GVHD) we showed that allo-antigen specific Tregs can prevent GVHD, avoiding generalized immuno-suppression early post-transplantation.
The new projects which are in continuity with the previous ones include i) one fundamental project to study microRNA manipulation in Tregs, ii) one pre-clinical project “IL-2 therapeutic application in T1D”, which comprises from bench to bedside research, going from the impressive results showing that IL-2 can cure T1D in NOD mice to the development of clinical trials to test this therapy in T1D patients; and a second pre-clinical project to assess IL-2 therapeutic application in graft vs. host disease (GHVD). In summary, for the next years I want to pursue the study of the biology of Tregs and Treg- based therapies in autoimmunity and other pathologies and specifically address the use of low-dose IL-2 as a new immunosuppressive drug.
Also, in collaboration with the Argentinean team headed by Prof. Hugo Lujan, we are developing the use of the intestinal parasite Giardia lamblia variant-specific surface proteins (VSP) as a carrier of candidate vaccinal antigens for oral vaccination, formulated as fusion proteins or as viral like-particles.