Gianpaolo Papaccio

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Gianpaolo Papaccio was born in Napoli (Italy) in 1955. He obtained his BA in Medicine and Surgery cum laude in 1979 at the Federico II University of Naples and his Ph.D. in Human Biostructure at the Washington University of Seattle (Seattle, WA, USA) in 1982.

Gianpaolo Papaccio
Gianpaolo Papaccio in 2022
Born February 13th, 1955
Napoli, Italy
Nationality Italian
Education University of Naples “Federico II” (Italy)
Washington University -Seattle (USA)
Fields Medicine and Surgery
Institutions University of Campania “L. Vanvitelli”
Medicine and Surgery School-Naples (IT)
Top Italian Scientist in Biomedical Sciences


He is currently Full Professor of Human Histology and Embryology, at the Department of Experimental Medicine, University of Campania “L. Vanvitelli” Naples. He is a member of the Ph.D. Council of Biotechnology at the same University.[1]

Education and career

Gianpaolo Papaccio graduated in Medicine and Surgery from the University Naples “Federico II” in 1979. He got a Ph.D. from the University of Washington (Seattle-USA) with a research project on the 3D reconstruction of pancreatic islets from healthy and type 1 diabetic subjects. He got a position as a Researcher in 1984 in the University of Naples “Federico II”. In 1994 he was appointed as associate professor at the same University and in 2005 he become Full Professor of Human Histology and Embryology at the University of Campania “L. Vanvitelli”.

At the same time he was also physician in the Clinical Hospital of the University as assistant, then Head of the Hospital Division of “Citometry and NGS” for Oncological patients.

Over the years, he has held numerous teaching courses in the said Universities, becoming, since 2013 President of the Degree Course in Medicine and Surgery in English for foreigner and Italian students. This Position was maintained up to 2019.

Research Interests

Gianpaolo Papaccio’s research interests include: Human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) biology from isolation to characterization and differentiation into osteogenic, angiogenic and adipogenic lineages. Production in vitro and in vitro of Human bone starting from hMSCs, studies of stem cell adhesion and differentiation to several scaffolds for bone tissue engineering, relationship between hMSCs and cancer stem cells (CSCs) in the tumor bulk of human osteosarcomas and breast cancers and peritumoral tissue, as well as mitochondrial transfer between hMSCs and CSCs.


Studies on Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells

Gianpaolo Papaccio’s studies on Human Mesenchymal stem cells include stem cells from adipose Stromal-Vascular area of Human adipose tissue, taken from patients undergoing plastic surgery or from dental pulps of patients undergoing 3rd molar surgery. Those studies were performed in his laboratory and in collaboration with other research Labs. The studies were the first ones demonstrating that Dental Pulp Stem Cells (DPSCs) were capable to give rise to woven bone in in vitro culture[2][3] and then, when grafted to patient’s mandible, able to obtain a compact bone[4][5].

Studies on Osteogenic, angiogenic and adipogenic Differentiation

Gianpaolo Papaccio’s studies on hMSCs differentiation were focused at differentiating, those stem cells toward bone, vessels and adipose tissue. The studies were performed in 2D and 3D cultures and either bone and vessels as well as adipose tissues were obtained[6][7].

Studies on Bone growth in vitro and in vivo (cell grafting)

Gianpaolo Papaccio’s main studies were the first capable to demonstrate that Dental Pulp Stem Cells (DPSCs), that are hMSCs very proliferative, were capable to give rise to woven bone after in vitro culture[7] and then, when grafted into patient’s mandible, were able to give rise to a compact bone in all patients[8]. Other studies demonstrated a pivotal role of HDAC[9].

Studies on MSCs and CSCs interplay

More recently Gianpaolo Papaccio’s studies were devoted to understand a possible role of hMSCs in cancer biology. The question was: do the hMSCs exert possible effects in modulating the behavior and metabolism of cancer cells? The first studies. have demonstrated that cancer cells allow hMSCs to become endothelial cells stimulating angiogenesis.[10] Further studies have shown that a considerably interplay exists between hMSCs and cancer cells mainly in the peritumoral area with mitochondrial transfer from hMSCs to cancer cells.


In his studies, he employed several methods of cellular and molecular biology, including: cell isolation and characterization, Cell sorting (by Flux Cytometry), qRT-PCR, WB, ELISA reader, Crispr-Cas9, viral vectors, gene editing, confocal microscopy, immunofluorescence, among others.

Selected Publications from the total of 143

External links


  1. Gianpaolo PAPACCIO - Università degli Studi della Campania "Luigi Vanvitelli"
  2. Papaccio G, Pisanti F.A. and Frascatore S.: Acetyl- homocysteine thiolactone-induced increase of Superoxide Dismutase counteracts the effect of subdiabetogenic doses of streptozocin. Diabetes, 35, 470-474, 1986
  3. Papaccio G., Esposito V.: Hyperglycemic effects of hydrochlorothiazide and propranolol. A biochemical and ultrastructural study. Acta Diabetologica Latina,(oggi Acta Diabetologica) 24, 325-330, 1987
  4. Esposito V. and Papaccio G.: Nephrotoxicity of Cyclosporin A in diabetic Bio Breeding rats, Micron, 19, 227-234, 1988
  5. Pisanti F.A., Frascatore S., Papaccio G.: Superoxide dismutase activity in the Bio Breeding rat: a dynamic time-course study. Life Sciences, 43, 1625-1632, 1988
  6. Papaccio G. and Mezzogiorno V.: Morphological aspects of glucagon and somatostatin islet cells in diabetic bio breeding and low-dose streptozocin-treated wistar rats. Pancreas, 4, 289-294, 1989
  7. 7.0 7.1 Papaccio G., Esposito V. and Mezzogiorno V.: Multiple low-dose streptozocin-treated rats: biochemical and morphological effects of Cyclosporin A administration. Cell. Mol. Biol., 35, 409-420, 1989
  8. Papaccio G., Esposito V. and Mezzogiorno V.: Recovery of pancreatic B cells after Cyclosporin A treatment in bio breeding and Wistar rats. Cell. Mol. Biol., 35, 409-420, 1989
  9. Papaccio G., Esposito V.: Cyclosporin administration during pregnancy induces ultrastructural changes on pancreatic Beta-cells of newborn rats. Cell Tissues and Organs, 137: 336-341, 1990
  10. Papaccio G., Chieffi-Baccari G., Mezzogiorno V., Esposito V.: Capillary area in early low-dose-Streptozocin treated mice. Histochemistry, 95, 19-21, 1990