Grade IV glioblastoma is characterized by increased kinase activity of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR); however, EGFR kinase inhibitors have failed to improve survival in individuals with this cancer because resistance to these drugs often develops. We showed that tumor necrosis factor-? (TNF?) produced in the glioblastoma microenvironment activated atypical protein kinase C (aPKC), thereby producing resistance to EGFR kinase inhibitors. Additionally, we identified that aPKC was required both for paracrine TNF?-dependent activation of the transcription factor nuclear factor ?B (NF-?B) and for tumor cell-intrinsic receptor tyrosine kinase signaling. Targeting aPKC decreased tumor growth in mouse models of glioblastoma, including models of EGFR kinase inhibitor-resistant glioblastoma. Furthermore, aPKC abundance and activity were increased in human glioblastoma tumor cells, and high aPKC abundance correlated with poor prognosis. Thus, targeting aPKC might provide an improved molecular approach for glioblastoma therapy.
Background. Levels of the protein kinase aPKC have been previously correlated with prostate cancer prognosis in a British cohort. However, prostate cancer incidence and progression rates, as well as genetic changes in this disease, show strong ethnic variance, particularly in Asian populations. Objective. The aim of this study was to validate association of aPKC expression with prostatic adenocarcinoma stages in a Japanese cohort. Methods. Tissue microarrays consisting of 142 malignant prostate cancer cases and 21 benign prostate tissues were subject to immunohistological staining for aPKC. aPKC staining intensity was scored by three independent pathologists and categorized as absent (0), dim (1+), intermediate (2+), and bright (3+). aPKC staining intensities were correlated with Gleason score and tumor stage. Results. Increased aPKC staining was observed in malignant prostate cancer, in comparison to benign tissue. Additionally, aPKC staining levels correlated with Gleason score and tumor stage. Our results extend the association of aPKC with prostate cancer to a Japanese population and establish the suitability of aPKC as a universal prostate cancer biomarker that performs consistently across ethnicities.
Patients with refractory respiratory symptoms related to gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) such as asthma and cough are being referred for laparoscopic fundoplication (LFP), as recommended by the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES). However there are limited data regarding symptomatic response to fundoplication in this group of patients.
Context.-Pulmonary large cell carcinoma (LCC) includes tumors not readily diagnosed as adenocarcinoma (ADC) or squamous cell carcinoma on morphologic grounds, without regard to immunophenotype, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). This ambiguous designation may cause confusion over selection of mutation testing and directed therapies. Several groups have proposed the use of immunohistochemistry (IHC) to recategorize LCC as ADC or squamous cell carcinoma; however, it remains unclear if strictly defined LCCs are a clinicopathologically distinct lung tumor subset. Objective.-To compare the pathologic, molecular, and clinical features of 2 morphologically similar tumors: solid-subtype ADC and LCC. Design.-Tumors were included on the basis of solid growth pattern; tumors with squamous or neuroendocrine differentiation were excluded. Solid ADC (n = 42) and LCC (n = 57) were diagnosed by using WHO criteria (5 intracellular mucin droplets in ?2 high-power fields for solid ADC) and tested for KRAS, EGFR, and ALK alterations. Results.-Both solid ADC and LCC groups were dominated by tumors with "undifferentiated"-type morphology and both had a high frequency of thyroid transcription factor 1 expression. KRAS was mutated in 38% of solid ADCs versus 43% of LCCs (P = .62). One ALK-rearranged and 1 EGFR-mutated tumor were detected in the solid ADC and LCC groups, respectively. There were no significant differences in clinical features or outcomes; the prevalence of smoking in both groups was greater than 95%. Conclusions.-Other than a paucity of intracellular mucin, LCC lacking squamous or neuroendocrine differentiation is indistinguishable from solid-subtype ADC. We propose the reclassification of these tumors as mucin-poor solid adenocarcinomas.
Insulin receptor substrate (IRS) proteins have been shown to play an important role in breast cancer by differentially regulating cancer cell survival, proliferation, and motility. Furthermore, the IL-4-induced tyrosine phosphorylation of the transcription factor STAT6 was shown to protect breast cancer cells from apoptosis. Here, we analyzed human breast cancer tissues for the expression of IRS1, IRS2, STAT6, and tyrosine phosphorylated STAT6 (pSTAT6). We found that IRS1 and pSTAT6 were both highly expressed in ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). On the other hand, IRS2 expression was low in DCIS, but increased significantly in relation to tumor invasiveness. We utilized cell lines with disparate IRS1 expression, MDA-MB-231, MCF7, and MCF7 cells with depleted IRS1 due to shRNA lentiviral infection, to examine the role of IRS1 and IRS2 in the responsiveness of breast cancer cells to chemotherapy. We report that high IRS1 sensitized MCF7 cells to specific chemotherapeutic agents. These results suggest that high IRS1 with low IRS2 expression may predict the effectiveness of specific types of chemotherapy in breast cancer.
Dendritic cell (DC) activation is essential for the induction of immune defense against pathogens, yet needs to be tightly controlled to avoid chronic inflammation and exaggerated immune responses. Here, we identify a mechanism of immune homeostasis by which adaptive immunity, once triggered, tempers DC activation and prevents overreactive immune responses. T cells, once activated, produced Protein S (Pros1) that signaled through TAM receptor tyrosine kinases in DCs to limit the magnitude of DC activation. Genetic ablation of Pros1 in mouse T cells led to increased expression of costimulatory molecules and cytokines in DCs and enhanced immune responses to T cell-dependent antigens, as well as increased colitis. Additionally, PROS1 was expressed in activated human T cells, and its ability to regulate DC activation was conserved. Our results identify a heretofore unrecognized, homeostatic negative feedback mechanism at the interface of adaptive and innate immunity that maintains the physiological magnitude of the immune response.
Transcriptome regionalization is an essential polarity determinant among metazoans, directing embryonic axis formation during normal development. Although conservation of this principle in mammals is assumed, recent evidence is conflicting and it is not known whether transcriptome asymmetries exist within unfertilized mammalian eggs or between the respective cleavage products of early embryonic divisions. We here address this by comparing transcriptome profiles of paired single cells and sub-cellular structures obtained microsurgically from mouse oocytes and totipotent embryos. Paired microsurgical spindle and remnant samples from unfertilized metaphase II oocytes possessed distinguishable profiles. Fertilization produces a totipotent 1-cell embryo (zygote) and associated spindle-enriched second polar body whose paired profiles also differed, reflecting spindle transcript enrichment. However, there was no programmed transcriptome asymmetry between sister cells within 2- or 3-cell embryos. Accordingly, there is transcriptome asymmetry within mouse oocytes, but not between the sister blastomeres of early embryos. This work places constraints on pre-patterning in mammals and provides documentation correlating potency changes and transcriptome partitioning at the single-cell level.
The oocytes of vertebrates are typically arrested at metaphase II (mII) by the cytostatic factor Emi2 until fertilization. Regulatory mechanisms in Xenopus Emi2 (xEmi2) are understood in detail but contrastingly little is known about the corresponding mechanisms in mammals. Here, we analyze Emi2 and its regulatory neighbours at the molecular level in intact mouse oocytes. Emi2, but not xEmi2, exhibited nuclear targeting. Unlike xEmi2, separable N- and C-terminal domains of mouse Emi2 modulated metaphase establishment and maintenance, respectively, through indirect and direct mechanisms. The C-terminal activity was mapped to the potential phosphorylation target Tx(5)SxS, a destruction box (D-box), a lattice of Zn(2+)-coordinating residues and an RL domain. The minimal region of Emi2 required for its cytostatic activity was mapped to a region containing these motifs, from residue 491 to the C terminus. The cytostatic factor Mos-MAPK promoted Emi2-dependent metaphase establishment, but Mos autonomously disappeared from meiotically competent mII oocytes. The N-terminal Plx1-interacting phosphodegron of xEmi2 was apparently shifted to within a minimal fragment (residues 51-300) of mouse Emi2 that also contained a calmodulin kinase II (CaMKII) phosphorylation motif and which was efficiently degraded during mII exit. Two equimolar CaMKII gamma isoform variants were present in mII oocytes, neither of which phosphorylated Emi2 in vitro, consistent with the involvement of additional factors. No evidence was found that calcineurin is required for mouse mII exit. These data support a model in which mammalian meiotic establishment, maintenance and exit converge upon a modular Emi2 hub via evolutionarily conserved and divergent mechanisms.
In vertebrates, a rise in intracellular free Ca(2+) (Ca(2+)(i)) levels during fertilization initiates second metaphase (mII) exit and the developmental programme. The Ca(2+) rise has long been considered to be crucial for development, but verifying this contribution would benefit from defining its role during fertilization. Here, we delineate the role of Ca(2+) release during mII exit in wild-type mouse eggs and show that it is dispensable for full-term development. Exit from mII can be induced by Zn(2+)-specific sequestration without Ca(2+) release, eliciting Cyclin B degradation in a manner dependent upon the proteasome pathway and intact microtubules, but not accompanied by degradation of the meiotic regulator Emi2. Parthenogenotes generated by Zn(2+) sequestration developed in vitro with normal expression of Ca(2+)-sensitive genes. Meiotic exit induced by either Ca(2+) oscillations or a single Ca(2+) rise in oocytes containing a signaling-deficient sperm resulted in comparable developmental rates. In the absence of Ca(2+) release, full-term development occurred approximately 50% less efficiently, but at readily detectable rates, with the birth of 27 offspring. These results show in intact mouse oocytes that Zn(2+) is essential for mII arrest and suggest that triggering meiotic exit is the sole indispensable developmental role of Ca(2+) signaling in mammalian fertilization.
We describe a genome-wide gain-of-function screen for regulators of NF-kappaB, and identify Rap1 (Trf2IP), as an essential modulator of NF-kappaB-mediated pathways. NF-kappaB is induced by ectopic expression of Rap1, whereas its activity is inhibited by Rap1 depletion. In addition to localizing on telomeres, mammalian Rap1 forms a complex with IKKs (IkappaB kinases), and is crucial for the ability of IKKs to be recruited to, and phosphorylate, the p65 subunit of NF-kappaB to make it transcriptionally competent. Rap1-mutant mice display defective NF-kappaB activation and are resistant to endotoxic shock. Furthermore, levels of Rap1 are positively regulated by NF-kappaB, and human breast cancers with NF-kappaB hyperactivity show elevated levels of cytoplasmic Rap1. Similar to inhibiting NF-kappaB, knockdown of Rap1 sensitizes breast cancer cells to apoptosis. These results identify the first cytoplasmic role of Rap1 and provide a mechanism through which it regulates an important signalling cascade in mammals, independent of its ability to regulate telomere function.
The reparative properties of bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) have been attributed in part to the paracrine action of secreted factors. We isolated typical human BMSCs by plastic adherence and compared them with BMSC sub-populations isolated by magnetic-activated cell sorting against CD133 (CD133-derived BMSCs, CD133BMSCs) or CD271 [p75 low-affinity nerve growth factor receptor (p75LNGFR), p75BMSCs]. Microarray assays of expressed genes, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) of selected growth factors and cytokines secreted under normoxic and hypoxic conditions demonstrated that the three transit-amplifying progenitor cell populations were distinct from one another. CD133BMSC-conditioned medium (CdM) was superior to p75BMSC CdM in protecting neural progenitor cells against cell death during growth factor/nutrient withdrawal. Intracardiac (arterial) administration of concentrated CD133BMSC CdM provided neuroprotection and significantly reduced cortical infarct volumes in mice following cerebral ischemia. In support of the paracrine hypothesis for BMSC action, intra-arterial infusion of CD133BMSC CdM provided significantly greater protection against stroke compared with the effects of CD133BMSC (cell) administration. CdM from CD133BMSCs also provided superior protection against stroke compared with that conferred by CdM from p75BMSCs or typically isolated BMSCs. CD133 identifies a sub-population of nonhematopoietic stem/progenitor cells from adult human bone marrow, and CD133BMSC CdM may provide neuroprotection for patients with stroke.
To identify needs encountered by older adult patients after hospital discharge and assess the impact of a telephone transitional care intervention on stress, health care utilization, readmissions, and mortality.
A porcine model of severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) promises to facilitate human cancer studies, the humanization of tissue for xenotransplantation, and the evaluation of stem cells for clinical therapy, but SCID pigs have not been described. We report here the generation and preliminary evaluation of a porcine SCID model. Fibroblasts containing a targeted disruption of the X-linked interleukin-2 receptor gamma chain gene, Il2rg, were used as donors to generate cloned pigs by serial nuclear transfer. Germline transmission of the Il2rg deletion produced healthy Il2rg(+/-) females, while Il2rg(-/Y) males were athymic and exhibited markedly impaired immunoglobulin and T and NK cell production, robustly recapitulating human SCID. Following allogeneic bone marrow transplantation, donor cells stably integrated in Il2rg(-/Y) heterozygotes and reconstituted the Il2rg(-/Y) lymphoid lineage. The SCID pigs described here represent a step toward the comprehensive evaluation of preclinical cellular regenerative strategies.
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