In JoVE (1)

Other Publications (7)

Articles by Joshua B. Slee in JoVE

Other articles by Joshua B. Slee on PubMed

Exercise and Other Indirect Challenges to Demonstrate Asthma or Exercise-induced Bronchoconstriction in Athletes

The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. Aug, 2008  |  Pubmed ID: 18678339

The prevalence of exercise-induced bronchoconstriction is reported to be high among recreational and elite athletes, yet diagnosis is often symptom-based. Indirect challenges such as the laboratory exercise challenge provide objective criteria for proper diagnosis and treatment. However, a standardized protocol using appropriate exercise intensity, duration, and dry air inhalation is often not implemented, and thus a false-negative test may result. This article reviews and describes the symptom-based diagnosis, the exercise challenge, and other indirect challenges such as eucapnic voluntary hyperpnea, hypertonic saline inhalation, and inhaled powdered mannitol as methods to diagnose and evaluate exercise-induced bronchoconstriction. Advantages and disadvantages of each diagnostic procedure are presented.

Actin Realignment and Cofilin Regulation Are Essential for Barrier Integrity During Shear Stress

Journal of Cellular Biochemistry. Apr, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23060131

Vascular endothelial cells and their actin microfilaments align in the direction of fluid shear stress (FSS) in vitro and in vivo. To determine whether cofilin, an actin severing protein, is required in this process, the levels of phospho-cofilin (serine-3) were evaluated in cells exposed to FSS. Phospho-cofilin levels decreased in the cytoplasm and increased in the nucleus during FSS exposure. This was accompanied by increased nuclear staining for activated LIMK, a cofilin kinase. Blocking stress kinases JNK and p38, known to play roles in actin realignment during FSS, decreased cofilin phosphorylation under static conditions, and JNK inhibition also resulted in decreased phospho-cofilin during FSS exposure. Inhibition of dynamic changes in cofilin phosphorylation through cofilin mutants decreased correct actin realignment. The mutants also decreased barrier integrity as did inhibition of the stress kinases. These results identify the importance of cofilin in the process of actin alignment and the requirement for actin realignment in endothelial barrier integrity during FSS.


Journal of Cellular Physiology. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24911927

Published data provide strong evidence that heparin treatment of proliferating vascular smooth muscle cells results in decreased signaling through the ERK pathway and decreases in cell proliferation. In addition, these changes have been shown to be mimicked by antibodies that block heparin binding to the cell surface. Here, we provide evidence that the activity of protein kinase G is required for these heparin effects. Specifically, a chemical inhibitor of protein kinase G, Rp-8-pCPT-cGMS, eliminates heparin and anti-heparin receptor antibody effects on bromodeoxyuridine incorporation into growth factor stimulated cells. In addition, protein kinase G inhibitors decrease heparin effects on ERK activity, phosphorylation of the transcription factor ELK-1, and heparin-induced MKP-1 synthesis. Although transient, the levels of cGMP increase in heparin treated cells. Finally, knock down of protein kinase G also significantly decreases heparin effects in growth factor activated vascular smooth muscle cells. Together, these data indicate that heparin effects on vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation depend, at least in part, on signaling through protein kinase G. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Addressing the Inflammatory Response to Clinically Relevant Polymers by Manipulating the Host Response Using ITIM Domain-Containing Receptors

Polymers. Sep, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 25705515

Tissue contacting surfaces of medical devices initiate a host inflammatory response, characterized by adsorption of blood proteins and inflammatory cells triggering the release of cytokines, reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS), in an attempt to clear or isolate the foreign object from the body. This normal host response contributes to device-associated pathophysiology and addressing device biocompatibility remains an unmet need. Although widespread attempts have been made to render the device surfaces unreactive, the establishment of a completely bioinert coating has been untenable and demonstrates the need to develop strategies based upon the molecular mechanisms that define the interaction between host cells and synthetic surfaces. In this review, we discuss a family of transmembrane receptors, known as immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibitory motif (ITIM)-containing receptors, which show promise as potential targets to address aberrant biocompatibility. These receptors repress the immune response and ensure that the intensity of an immune response is appropriate for the stimuli. Particular emphasis will be placed on the known ITIM-containing receptor, Signal Regulatory Protein Alpha (SIRPhα), and its cognate ligand CD47. In addition, this review will discuss the potential of other ITIM-containing proteins as targets for addressing the aberrant biocompatibility of polymeric biomaterials.

Heparin Decreases in Tumor Necrosis Factor α (TNFα)-induced Endothelial Stress Responses Require Transmembrane Protein 184A and Induction of Dual Specificity Phosphatase 1

The Journal of Biological Chemistry. Mar, 2016  |  Pubmed ID: 26769965

Despite the large number of heparin and heparan sulfate binding proteins, the molecular mechanism(s) by which heparin alters vascular cell physiology is not well understood. Studies with vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) indicate a role for induction of dual specificity phosphatase 1 (DUSP1) that decreases ERK activity and results in decreased cell proliferation, which depends on specific heparin binding. The hypothesis that unfractionated heparin functions to decrease inflammatory signal transduction in endothelial cells (ECs) through heparin-induced expression of DUSP1 was tested. In addition, the expectation that the heparin response includes a decrease in cytokine-induced cytoskeletal changes was examined. Heparin pretreatment of ECs resulted in decreased TNFα-induced JNK and p38 activity and downstream target phosphorylation, as identified through Western blotting and immunofluorescence microscopy. Through knockdown strategies, the importance of heparin-induced DUSP1 expression in these effects was confirmed. Quantitative fluorescence microscopy indicated that heparin treatment of ECs reduced TNFα-induced increases in stress fibers. Monoclonal antibodies that mimic heparin-induced changes in VSMCs were employed to support the hypothesis that heparin was functioning through interactions with a receptor. Knockdown of transmembrane protein 184A (TMEM184A) confirmed its involvement in heparin-induced signaling as seen in VSMCs. Therefore, TMEM184A functions as a heparin receptor and mediates anti-inflammatory responses of ECs involving decreased JNK and p38 activity.

Transmembrane Protein 184A Is a Receptor Required for Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell Responses to Heparin

The Journal of Biological Chemistry. Mar, 2016  |  Pubmed ID: 26769966

Vascular cell responses to exogenous heparin have been documented to include decreased vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation following decreased ERK pathway signaling. However, the molecular mechanism(s) by which heparin interacts with cells to induce those responses has remained unclear. Previously characterized monoclonal antibodies that block heparin binding to vascular cells have been found to mimic heparin effects. In this study, those antibodies were employed to isolate a heparin binding protein. MALDI mass spectrometry data provide evidence that the protein isolated is transmembrane protein 184A (TMEM184A). Commercial antibodies against three separate regions of the TMEM184A human protein were used to identify the TMEM184A protein in vascular smooth muscle cells and endothelial cells. A GFP-TMEM184A construct was employed to determine colocalization with heparin after endocytosis. Knockdown of TMEM184A eliminated the physiological responses to heparin, including effects on ERK pathway activity and BrdU incorporation. Isolated GFP-TMEM184A binds heparin, and overexpression results in additional heparin uptake. Together, these data support the identification of TMEM184A as a heparin receptor in vascular cells.

Enhanced Biocompatibility of CD47-functionalized Vascular Stents

Biomaterials. May, 2016  |  Pubmed ID: 26914699

The effectiveness of endovascular stents is hindered by in-stent restenosis (ISR), a secondary re-obstruction of treated arteries due to unresolved inflammation and activation of smooth muscle cells in the arterial wall. We previously demonstrated that immobilized CD47, a ubiquitously expressed transmembrane protein with an established role in immune evasion, can confer biocompatibility when appended to polymeric surfaces. In present studies, we test the hypothesis that CD47 immobilized onto metallic surfaces of stents can effectively inhibit the inflammatory response thus mitigating ISR. Recombinant CD47 (recCD47) or a peptide sequence corresponding to the Ig domain of CD47 (pepCD47), were attached to the surfaces of both 316L-grade stainless steel foils and stents using bisphosphonate coordination chemistry and thiol-based conjugation reactions to assess the anti-inflammatory properties of CD47-functionalized surfaces. Initial in vitro and ex vivo analysis demonstrated that both recCD47 and pepCD47 significantly reduced inflammatory cell attachment to steel surfaces without impeding on endothelial cell retention and expansion. Using a rat carotid stent model, we showed that pepCD47-functionalized stents prevented fibrin and platelet thrombus deposition, inhibited inflammatory cell attachment, and reduced restenosis by 30%. It is concluded that CD47-modified stent surfaces mitigate platelet and inflammatory cell attachment, thereby disrupting ISR pathophysiology.

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