Research Groups

Cellular senescence and age-related pathologies


The Demaria lab is interested to understand the function of a particular cell state, defined cellular senescence, in relation to aging. Our goal is to develop new interventions that target senescent cells to delay or prevent diseases associated with age.

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  • Marco Demaria Visit

    Group Leader of the Laboratory of Cellular Senescence and Age-related Pathologies

    Research fields

    Cellular Senecence, DNA damage, SASP, skin, aging, cancer, metastasis, chemotherapy, tissue repair, wound healing

    Postdoctoral Fellows
    Abel Soto-Gamez
    Martijn Rutten
    Michaela Borghesan
    Jamil Nehme
    Sjors Maassen
    PhD Students
    Abdullah Altulea
    Alessio Piccolantonio
    Letícya Simone Melo dos Santos
    Mengling Huang
    Myrthe Klaver
    Sebastian Mackedenski
    Lotte Steeneken
    Teodora Gheorghe
    Simone Brandenburg
  • Our group aims to dissect and isolate the molecular phenotypes of senescent cells induced by different stimuli, and to characterize how they can promote age-related pathology, including cancer. Cellular senescence is a complex tumor-suppressive mechanism induced by many different stresses characterized by growth arrest, changes in morphology and gene expression, and the secretion of inflammatory cytokines, proteases and other molecules that can alter the tissue microenvironment (a phenomenon termed the senescence-associated secretory phenotype or SASP). The Demaria lab has developed new tools to identify, isolate and characterize senescent cells in mice and humans, and to study how senescent cells participate in several biological processes. Using the skin as the reference tissue and a wide array of primary cells, mouse models and human biopsies, the lab will investigate the differences between beneficial and deleterious effects of cellular senescence with the long-term goal to develop new therapies for the prevention of age-related diseases and cancer

    • Kohli J, Fitsiou E, Ge C, Wang B, Brandenburg SM, Diercks GFH, Faller WJ, Demaria M. (2022) Targeting anti-apoptotic pathways eliminates senescent melanocytes and leads to nevi regression. Nature Communcations.
    • Varela-Eirin M, Demaria M. (2022) Primer: Cellular Senescence. Current Biology.
    • Wang B, Varela-Eirin M, Brandenburg SM, Hernandez-Segura A, van Vliet T, Jongbloed EM, Wilting SM, Ohtani N, Jager A, Demaria M. (2022) Pharmacological CDK4/6 inhibition reveals a p53-dependent senescent state with restricted toxicities. EMBO Journal.
    • Secomandi L, Borghesan M, Velarde M, Demaria M. (2022) The role of cellular senescence in female reproductive aging and the potential for senotherapeutic interventions. 2022. Human Reproduction.
    • Soto-Gamez A, Wang Y, Zhou X, Seras L, Quax W, Demaria M. (2021) Enhanced extrinsic apoptosis of therapy-induced senescent cancer cells using a death receptor 5 (DR5) selective agonist. Cancer Letters.
    • Wang B, Demaria M. (2021) The quest to define and target cellular senescence in cancer. Cancer Research.
    • Nehme J, Yang D, Altulea A, Varela-Eirin M, Wang L, Hu S, Wu Y, Togo J, Niu C, Speakman JR, Demaria M. (2021) High protein and fat contents exacerbate hepatic senescence and SASP in mice. FEBS Journal.
    • Zampetidis CP, Galanos P, Angelopoulou A, Zhu Y, Polyzou A, Karamitros T, Kotsinas A, Lagopati N, Mourkioti I, Mirzazadeh R, Polyzos A, Garnerone S, Mizi A, Gusmao EG, Sofiadis K, Gál Z, Larsen DH, Pefani DE, Demaria M, Tsirigos A, Crosetto N, Maya-Mendoza A, Papaspyropoulos A, Evangelou K, Bartek J, Papantonis A, Gorgoulis VG. (2021) A recurrent chromosomal inversion suffices for driving escape from oncogene-induced senescence via subTAD reorganization. Molecular Cell.
    • Talma N, Gerrits E, Wang B, Eggen BJL, Demaria M.(2021) Identification of distinct and age-dependent p16High microglia subtypes. Aging Cell.
    • Kohli J, Wang B, Brandenburg SM et al. (2021) Algorithmic assessment of cellular senescence in experimental and clinical specimens. Nature Protocols.  
    • Kohli J, Veenstra I, Demaria M.(2021)  The struggle of a good friend getting old: cellular senescence  in viral responses and therapy. EMBO Reports.  
    • Fitsiou E, Soto-Gamez A, Demaria M. (2021) Biological functions of therapy-induced senescence in cancer. Seminars in Cancer Biology.  
    • Vliet T, Wang B, Varela-Eirin M, Borghesan M, Brandenburg S, Evangelou K, Franzin R, Seelen M, Gorgoulis V, Demaria M.(2021) Physiological hypoxia restrains the Senescence-Associated Secretory Phenotype (SASP) via AMPK-mediated mTOR suppression. Molecular Cell.  
    • Wiley CD, Sharma R, Davis SS, Lopez-Dominguez JA, Mitchell KP, Wiley S, Alimirah F, Kim DE, Payne T, Rosko A, Aimontche E, Deshpande SM, Neri F, Kuehnemann C, Demaria M, Ramanathan A, Campisi J. (2021) Oxylipin biosynthesis reinforces cellular senescence and allows detection of senolysis. Cell Metabolism.  
    • Nehme J, Borghesan M, Mackedenski S, Bird TG, Demaria M. (2020) Cellular senescence as a potential mediator of Covid-19 severity in the elderly. Aging Cell.  
    • Peng X, Wu Y, Brouwer U, van Vliet T, Wang B, Demaria M, Barazzuol L, Coppes. (2020) RPCellular senescence contributed to radiation-induced hyposalivation by affecting the stem/progenitor cell niche. Cell death and Disease  
    • Wang B, Kohli J, Demaria M. (2020) Senescent cells in cancer therapy: friends or foes? Trends in Cancer.  
    • Borghesan M, Hoogaars WMH, Varela-Eirin M, Talma N, Demaria M. (2020) A senescence-centric view on aging: implications for longevity and disease. Trends in Cell Biology.  
    • Casciaro F, Borghesan M, Beretti F, Zavatti M, Bertucci E, Follo MY, Maraldi T, Demaria M. (2020) Prolonged hypoxia delays aging and preserved functionality of human amniotic fluid stem cells. Mechanisms of ageing and development.  
    • Alimirah F, Pulido T, Valdovinos A, Alptekin S, Chang E, Jones E, Diaz DA, Flores J, Velarde MC, Demaria M, Davalos AR, Wiley CD, Limbad C, Desprez PY, Campisi J. (2020) Cellular senescence promotes skin carcinogenesis through p38MAPK and p44/p42MAPK signaling. Cancer Research.  
    • van der Feen DE, Bossers GPL, Hagdorn QAJ, Moonen JR, Kurakula K, Szulcek R, Chappell J, Vallania F, Donato M, Kok K, Kohli JS, Petersen AH, van Leusden T, Demaria M, Goumans MTH, De Boer RA, Khatri P, Rabinovitch M, Berger RMF, Bartelds B. (2020) Cellular senescence impairs the reversibility of pulmonary arterial hypertension. Science Translational Medicine.  
    • Lubberts S, Meijer C, Demaria M and Gietema J. (2020) Early ageing after cytotoxic treatment for testicular cancer and cellular senescence: time to act. Critical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology.
    • Soto-Gamez A, Chen D, Nabuurs AGE, Quax WJ, Demaria M, Boersma YL ( 2020) A bispecific inhibitor of the EGFR/ADAM17 axis decreases cell proliferation and migration of EGFR-dependent cancer cells. Cancers.  
    • Gorgoulis V, Adams PD, Alimonti A, Bennett DC, Bischof O, Bishop C, Campisi J, Collado M, Evangelou K, Ferbeyre G, Gil J, Hara E, Krizhanovsky V, Jurk D, Maier AB, Narita M, Niedernhofer N, Passos JF, Robbins PD, Schmitt C, Sedivy J, Vougas K, von Zglinicki T, Zhou D, Serrano M, Demaria M.(2019) Cellular senescence: defining a path forward. Cell.  
    • Wiley CW, Liu S, Limbad C, Zawadzka A, Beck J, Demaria M, Artwood R, Alimirah F, Danielson SR, Ronnen Oron T, Desprez PY, Mooney S, Gibson BW, Schilling B, Campisi J, Kapahi P. (2019) SILAC analysis reveals a role for the senescence-associated secretory phenotype in hemostasis. Cell Reports.  
    • Fontana L, Mitchell SE, Wang B, Tosti V, van Vliet T, Veronese N, Bertozzi B, Early DS, Maissan P, Speakman JR, Demaria M (2018) The effects of graded caloric restriction: XII. Comparison of mouse to human impact on cellular senescence in the colon. Aging Cell.
    • Hernandez-Segura A, Nehme J, Demaria M (2018) Hallmarks of Cellular Senescence. Trends Cell Biology.  
    • Chinta SJ, Woods G, Demaria M, Rane A, Zou Y, McQuade A, Rajagopalan S, Limbad C, Madden DT, Campisi J, Andersen JK (2018) Cellular Senescence Is Induced by the Environmental Neurotoxin Paraquat and Contributes to Neuropathology Linked to Parkinson's Disease. Cell Reports.  
    • Kohli J, Campisi J, Demaria M (2018) A novel suicide gene therapy for the treatment of p16Ink4a-overexpressing tumors. Oncotarget.  
    • Hernandez-Segura A, de Jong TV, Melov S, Guryev V, Campisi J, Demaria M (2017) Unmasking Transcriptional Heterogeneity in Senescent Cells. Current Biology.
    • Jeon OH, Kim C, Laberge RM, Demaria M, Rathod S, Vasserot AP, Chung JW, Kim DH, Poon Y, David N, Baker DJ, van Deursen JM, Campisi J, Elisseeff JH. (2017) Local clearance of senescent cells attenuates the development of post-traumatic osteoarthritis and creates a pro-regenerative environment. Nature Medicine.  
    • Soto-Gamez A, Demaria M. (2017) Therapeutic interventions for aging: the case of cellular senescence. Drug Discovery Today.
    • Demaria M, O'Leary MN, Chang J, Shao L, Liu S, Alimirah F, Koenig K, Le C Mitin N, Deal AM, Alston S, Academia EC, Kilmarx S, Valdovinos A, Wang B, de Bruin A, Kennedy BK, Melov S, Zhou D, Sharpless NE, Muss H, Campisi J. (2017) Cellular Senescence Promotes Adverse Effects of Chemotherapy and Cancer Relapse. Cancer Discovery.    
    • Velarde MC, Demaria M. (2017) Targeting Senescent Cells: Possible Implications for Delaying Skin Aging: A Mini-Review. Gerontology.  
    • Loaiza N, Demaria M. (2016) Cellular senescence and tumor promotion: Is aging the key? Biochim Biophys Acta.  
    • Chang J, Wang Y, Shao L, Laberge RM, Demaria M, Campisi J, Janakiraman K, Sharpless NE, Ding S, Feng W, Luo Y, Wang X, Aykin-Burns N, Kragar K, Ponnappan U, Hauer-Jensen M, Meng A, Zhou D. (2015) Clearance of senescent cells by ABT263 rejuvenates aged hematopoietic stem cells in mice. Nature Medicine.
    • Liu S, Uppal H, Demaria M, Desprez PY, Campisi J, Kapahi P. (2015) Simvastatin suppresses breast cancer cell proliferation induced by senescent cells. Scientific Reports.
    • Kang C, Xu Q, Martin TD, Li MZ, Demaria M, Aron L, Lu T, Yankner BA, Campisi J, Elledge SJ. (2015) The DNA damage response induces inflammation and senescence by inhibiting autophagy of GATA4. Science.
    • Velarde M, Demaria M, Melov S, Campisi J. (2015) Pleiotropic age-dependent effects of mitochondrial dysfunction on epidermal stem cells. PNAS.
    • Laberge RM, Sun Y, Orjalo A, Patil C, Freund A, Zhou L, Curran S, Davalos A, Wilson-Edell K, Liu S, Limbad C, Demaria M, Li P, Hubbard G, Ikeno Y, Javors M, Desprez PY, Benz C, Kapahi P, Nelson P, Campisi J. (2015) mTOR Regulates the Tumor-Promoting Senescence-Associated Secretory Phenotype. Nature Cell Biology.
    • Christy B, Demaria M, Campisi J, Huang J, Dodds SG, Williams C, Hubbard G, Livi CB, Gao X, Weintraub S, Curiel T, Sharp ZD, Hasty P. (2015) p53 and Rapamycin are additive. Oncotarget.
    • Demaria M, Desprez PY, Campisi J, Velarde M. (2015) Cell autonomous and non-autonomous effects of senescent cells in the skin. Journal of Investigative Dermatology.
    • Neves J, Demaria M, Campisi J, Jasper H. (2015) Of flies, mice and men: evolutionary conserved tissue damage responses and aging. Developmental Cell.
    • Demaria M, Ohtani N, Youssef SA, Rodier F, Toussaint W, Mitchell JR, Laberge RM, Vijg J, Van Steeg H, Dollé M, Hoeijmakers J, deBruin A, Hara E, Campisi J. (2014) An essential role for senescent cells in optimal wound healing through secretion of PDGF-AA. Developmental Cell.
    • Chinta SJ, Woods G, Rane A, Demaria M, Campisi J, Andersen JK. (2014) Cellular senescence and the aging brain. Experimental Gerontology
    • Camporeale A, Demaria M, Monteleone E, Giorgi C, Wieckowski MR, Pinton P, Poli V. (2014) STAT3 activities and energy metabolism: dangerous liaisons. Cancers (Basel).
    • Demaria M, Camporeale A, Poli V. (2014) STAT3 and metabolism: how many ways to use a single molecule. International Journal of Cancer
    • Laberge RM, Adler D, Demaria M, Mechtouf N, Teachenor R, Cardin GB, Desprez PY, Campisi J, Rodier F. (2013) Mitochondrial DNA damage induces apoptosis in senescent cells. Cell Death & Disease
    • Chinta SJ, Lieu CA, Demaria M, Laberge RM, Campisi J, Andersen JK. (2013) Environmental stress, ageing and glial cell senescence: a novel mechanistic link to Parkinson's disease? Journal of Internal Medicine.
    • Velarde MC, Demaria M, Campisi J. (2013) Senescent cells and their secretory phenotype as targets for cancer therapy. Interdisciplinary Topics in Gerontology.
    • Demaria M, Campisi J. (2012) Matters of life and breath: A role for hypoxia in determining cell state. Aging Albany NY.
    • Demaria M, Poli V. (2012) PKM2, STAT3 and HIF-1α: The Warburg’s vicious circle. JAK-STAT.
    • Demaria M, Poli V. (2012) Pro-malignant properties of STAT3 during chronic inflammation. Oncotarget.
    • Laberge RM, Zhou L, Sarantos MR, Rodier F, Freund A, de Keizer PL, Liu S, Demaria M, Cong YS, Kapahi P, Desprez PY, Hughes RE, Campisi J. (2012) Glucocorticoids Suppress Selected Components of the Senescence-Associated Secretory Phenotype. Aging Cell.
    • Freund A, Laberge RM, Demaria M, Campisi J. (2012) Lamin B1 loss is a senescence-associated biomarker. Molecular Biology of the Cell.
    • Pensa S, Demaria M, Avalle L, Barbieri I, Camporeale A, Poli V. (2012) From tissue invasion to glucose metabolism: the many aspects of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 pro-oncogenic activities. Hormone Molecular Biology and Clinical Investigation.
    • Demaria M, Misale S, Giorgi C, Miano V, Camporeale A, Campisi J, Pinton P, Poli V. (2012) STAT3 can serve as a hit in the process of malignant transformation of primary cells. Cell Death & Differentiation.
    • Haines B, Demaria M, Mao X, Xie L, Campisi J, Jin K, Greenberg DA. (2012) Hypoxia-inducible factor-1 and neuroglobin expression. Neuroscience Letter.
    • Demaria M, Poli V. (2011) From the nucleus to the mitochondria and back: the odyssey of a multitask STAT3. Cell Cycle.
    • Riess I,  Sala V,  Leo C, Demaria M, Gatti S, Gallo S, Fitou A, Boero O, Levi R, Cuccovillo I, Molla F, De Angelis N, Staszewsky  L, Latini R, Crepaldi T. (2011) A mouse model for spatial and temporal expression of HGF in the heart. Transgenic Research.
    • Demaria M, Giorgi C, Lebiedzinska M, Esposito G, D'Angeli L, Bartoli A, Gough DJ, Turkson J, Levy DE, Watson CJ, Wieckowski MR, Provero P, Pinton P, Poli V. (2010) A STAT3-mediated metabolic switch is involved in tumour transformation and STAT3 addiction. Aging  Albany NY.
    • Barbieri I, Pensa S, Pannellini T, Quaglino E, Maritano D, Demaria M, Voster A, Turkson J, Cavallo F, Watson CJ, Provero P, Musiani P, Poli V. (2010) Constitutively active Stat3 enhances Neu-mediated migration and metastasis in mammary tumors via upregulation of Cten. Cancer Research.
  • Alejandra Hernández Segura, Data Scientist at Grace Systems

    Jaskaren Kohli – postdoc at University College London

    Thijmen van Vliet – clinical study manager at PRA Health Sciences

    Marta Varela Eirín – Postdoctoral Researcher at Instituto de Investigación Biomédica de A Coruña (INIBIC)

    Nynke Talma – Scientific Secretary at Stitching Beoordeling Ethiek Biomedisch Onderzoek (BEBO)

    Eleni Fitsiou – Project Manager in Research BV at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG)


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