Andrea Becchetti has received his academic degrees at the University of Milan. Next, he has spent prolonged research sojourns at the Department of General Pathology of the University of Florence (Italy), the Department of Physiology of the Emory University (Atlanta, USA), the Department of Physiological Sciences of the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (UK) and the Biophysics Sector of the International School for Advanced Studies (ISAS-SISSA), in Trieste (Italy). He is currently associate professor of General Physiology and Neuroscience.
Andrea Becchetti’s current research interests include the nicotinic and hypocretinergic modulation of synaptic transmission in the mature and developing brain, the pathogenesis of sleep-related epilepsy, and the role of voltage-gated K+ channels in cell adhesion, migration and proliferation. We carry out functional studies by electrophysiological methods in single cells (patch-clamp) and neuronal networks (multi-array recording), coupled to biomolecular and morphological methods.
1) Cholinergic regulation of the prefrontal microcircuit in wild-type mice and murine models of sleep-related epilepsy: implications for the modulation of arousal and the sleep-waking cycle (in collaboration with Dr. Amadeo).
2) Functional study of mutant α2, α4 and β2 nicotinic subunits linked to sleep-related and other epilepsies.
3) Study of the effect of hypocretins/orexins on neuronal transmission in subcortical arousal nuclei and prefrontal cortex, in mice conditionally expressing hypocretin receptors (in collaboration with Dr. Vassalli).
4) Role of voltage-dependent K+ channels (especially KV11.1, also known as hERG1) in cell adhesion and proliferation of excitable and non excitable cells, including cancer (in collaboration with prof. Arcangeli).
1) Becchetti A, Petroni G, Arcangeli A. Ion channel conformations regulate integrin-dependent signaling. Trends Cell Biol 29: 298-307, 2019.
2) Amadeo A, Coatti A, Aracri P, Ascagni M, Iannantuoni D, Modena D, Carraresi L, Brusco S, Meneghini S, Arcangeli A, Pasini ME, Becchetti A. Postnatal changes in K+/Cl- cotransporter-2 expression in the forebrain of mice bearing a mutant nicotinic subunit linked to sleep-related epilepsy. Neuroscience 386: 91-107, 2018.
3) Becchetti A, Crescioli S, Zanieri F, Petroni G, Mercatelli R, Coppola S, Gasparoli L, D’Amico M, Pillozzi S, Crociani O, Stefanini M, Fiore A, Carraresi L, Morello V, Manoli S, Brizzi MF, Ricci D, Rinaldi M, Masi A, Schmidt T, Quercioli F, Defilippi P, Arcangeli A. The conformational state of hERG1 channels determines integrin association, downstream signaling, and cancer progression. Science Signaling 10: eaaf3236, 2017.
4) Aracri P, Banfi D, Pasini ME, Amadeo A, Becchetti A. Orexin (hypocretin) regulates glutamate input to fast-spiking interneurons in layer V of the Fr2 region of the murine prefrontal cortex. Cerebral Cortex 25: 1330-1347, 2015