About the Authors

Maria Pia Francescato

maria.francescato@uniud.it

Affiliation Department of Medical and Biological Sciences, University of Udine, Udine, Italy

Giuliana Stel

Affiliation Department of Medical and Biological Sciences, University of Udine, Udine, Italy

Elisabetta Stenner

Affiliation Department of Laboratory Medicine, Ospedali Riuniti di Trieste, Trieste, Italy

Mario Geat

Affiliation Department of Medical and Biological Sciences, University of Udine, Udine, Italy

Competing Interests

The financial support by Bayer Italia S.p.A. does not alter the authors' adherence to PLOS ONE policies on sharing data and materials.

Author Contributions

Conceived and designed the experiments: MF MG. Performed the experiments: MF MG GS. Analyzed the data: MF ES GS. Contributed reagents/materials/analysis tools: GS ES. Wrote the paper: MF GS ES MG.