Articles by Zhuoxun Chen in JoVE
Other articles by Zhuoxun Chen on PubMed
Catalog of 162 Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) in a 4.7-kb Region of the HLA-DP Loci in Southern Chinese Ethnic Groups Journal of Human Genetics. 2004 | Pubmed ID: 14727153 HLA class-II proteins are cell-surface molecules that present antigens to T cells, and their expressional regulation is crucial to the immune reaction. Sequence variation at the regulatory region can directly affect the gene expression level. We cloned and sequenced a 4.7-kb region containing the regulatory region, exon1, and partial intron1 of both HLA-DPA1 and DPB1 genes in 25 variable sequences from southern Chinese ethnic groups and got a high-density map of 162 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs): seven in 5'-flanking regions, four in 5'-untranslated regions, and four in the coding regions. By comparing these data with SNPs in dbSNP database in the NCBI, 145 SNPs (89.5%) were novel. In addition, eight genetic variations of insertion-deletion polymorphisms (INDELs) were discovered within the 4.7-kb region. These high-resolution maps can be used as resources of markers for association studies of complex diseases, assessment of individuals' predisposition to diseases, and tailoring of therapies, as well as research markers for population genetics and evolution.
Telomerase Activity Coevolves with Body Mass Not Lifespan Aging Cell. Feb, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17173545 In multicellular organisms, telomerase is required to maintain telomere length in the germline but is dispensable in the soma. Mice, for example, express telomerase in somatic and germline tissues, while humans express telomerase almost exclusively in the germline. As a result, when telomeres of human somatic cells reach a critical length the cells enter irreversible growth arrest called replicative senescence. Replicative senescence is believed to be an anticancer mechanism that limits cell proliferation. The difference between mice and humans led to the hypothesis that repression of telomerase in somatic cells has evolved as a tumor-suppressor adaptation in large, long-lived organisms. We tested whether regulation of telomerase activity coevolves with lifespan and body mass using comparative analysis of 15 rodent species with highly diverse lifespans and body masses. Here we show that telomerase activity does not coevolve with lifespan but instead coevolves with body mass: larger rodents repress telomerase activity in somatic cells. These results suggest that large body mass presents a greater risk of cancer than long lifespan, and large animals evolve repression of telomerase activity to mitigate that risk.
Testosterone-induced Matrix Metalloproteinase Activation is a Checkpoint for Neuronal Addition to the Adult Songbird Brain The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience. Jan, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18171938 Testosterone-induced neuronal addition to the adult songbird vocal control center, HVC, requires the androgenic induction of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), followed by VEGF-stimulated angiogenesis. The expanded vasculature acts as a source of BDNF, which supports the immigration of new neurons from the overlying ventricular zone. In tumorigenesis, a similar process of adult angiogenesis is regulated by matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity, in particular that of the gelatinases. We therefore investigated the role of the gelatinases in neuronal addition to the HVC of adult female canaries. In situ zymography of the caudal forebrain revealed that testosterone-induced perivascular gelatinase activity that was most prominent in HVC. High-resolution gels revealed distinct MMP activities that comigrated with MMP2 and MMP9, and PCR cloning yielded MMP2 and MMP9 orthologues of 1465 and 1044 bp, respectively. Quantitative PCR revealed that HVC MMP2 mRNA levels doubled within 8 d of testosterone, whereas MMP9 transcript levels were stable. Moreover, isolated adult canary forebrain endothelial cells secreted MMP2, and VEGF substantially increased endothelial MMP2 gelatinase activity. To assess the importance of androgen-regulated, VEGF-induced MMP2 to adult angiogenesis and neurogenesis, we treated testosterone-implanted females with the gelatinase inhibitor SB-3CT. In situ zymography confirmed that SB-3CT suppressed gelatinase activity in HVC, and histological analysis revealed that SB-3CT-treated birds exhibited a decreased endothelial mitotic index and substantially diminished neuronal recruitment to HVC. These data suggest that the androgenic induction of endothelial MMP2 is a critical regulator of neuronal addition to the adult HVC, and as such comprises an important regulatory step in adult neurogenesis.
Perivascular Instruction of Cell Genesis and Fate in the Adult Brain Nature Neuroscience. Nov, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 22030549 The perivascular niche for neurogenesis was first reported as the co-association of newly generated neurons and their progenitors with both dividing and mitotically quiescent endothelial cells in restricted regions of the brain in adult birds and mammals alike. This review attempts to summarize our present understanding of the interaction of blood vessels with neural stem and progenitor cells, addressing both glial and neuronal progenitor cell interactions in the perivascular niche. We review the molecular interactions that are most critical to the endothelial control of stem and progenitor cell mobilization and differentiation. The focus throughout will be on defining those perivascular ligand-receptor interactions shared among these systems, as well as those that clearly differ as a function of cell type and setting, by which specificity may be achieved in the development of targeted therapeutics.