Pathological protein inclusions containing the microtubule-associated protein tau, ubiquitin, and a variety of heat shock proteins, originating in oligodendrocytes, are consistent features observed in a number of neurodegenerative diseases. Defects in the proteolytic degradation systems have been associated with protein aggregate formation. The ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) and autophagy are critically involved in the maintenance of cellular homeostasis and their activities need to be carefully balanced. A genuine crosstalk exists between the UPS and the autophagosomal system, and when the UPS is impaired, autophagy might act as a compensatory mechanism. Autophagy represents a lysosomal degradation system for degrading long-lived proteins and organelles, including damaged mitochondria. As we have shown before, proteasomal impairment by the reversible proteasomal inhibitor MG-132 (carbobenzoxy-L-leucyl-L-leucyl-L-leucinal) in oligodendrocytes leads to protein aggregate formation and apoptotic cell death, caused by activation of caspases and the mitochondrial pathway. The present study was undertaken to elucidate whether upregulation of the autophagic pathway by rapamycin can protect oligodendrocytes and ameliorate the consequences of MG-132-induced protein aggregate formation. The data show that rapamycin attenuated the formation of dense protein aggregates, but did not enhance the survival capability of oligodendrocytes after proteasomal inhibition. After activation of the autophagic pathway in combination with proteasomal inhibition, caspase 3 activation and poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 cleavage were even more pronounced than after proteasomal inhibition alone. Furthermore, rapamycin augmented MG-132-induced activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1 and 2, which are involved in the regulation of cell death and survival. In summary, depending on the cellular context and system, rapamycin may promote cell survival or, under other conditions in concert with apoptosis, may augment cell death, which seems to be the case in oligodendrocytes. Its therapeutic use for neurodegenerative disorders is most likely limited, since long-term administration may impair neuronal survival and specifically damage the myelin forming cells of the CNS.
Histone deacetylase 6 (HDAC6) is a unique member of the HDAC family. It is localized within the cytoplasm and has unique substrate specificities for nonhistone proteins, such as ?-tubulin. Furthermore, it plays a major role in protein aggregate formation and recently was demonstrated to interact with the microtubule associated protein tau and tau was identified as a possible substrate for HDAC6 in neurons. This study was undertaken to investigate whether HDAC6 is present in oligodendrocytes and whether it is involved in tubulin and tau acetylation in these cells. We show for the first time that HDAC6 is expressed in cultured rat brain oligodendrocytes. Its inhibition by the specific HDAC6 inhibitor tubastatin A (TST) leads to morphological alterations, microtubule bundling, and tubulin acetylation, and changes in tau-isoform expression and phosphorylation. Furthermore, the microtubule binding activity of tau was reduced. Using the oligodendroglial cell lines OLN-t40 and OLN-t44, which were genetically engineered to express either the longest human tau isoform with four microtubule binding repeats (4R-tau), or the shortest tau isoform with three repeats (3R-tau), respectively, we demonstrate that tau is acetylated by HDAC6 within the 4R-binding domain. Tau acetylation reduced its turnover rate and acetylated tau was degraded slower in these cells. TST and shRNA-mediated knockdown of HDAC6 in oligodendroglia cells caused an increase in pathological hyperphosphorylated tau detectable with the 12E8 antibody. Hence HDAC6 and dysregulation of the deacetylation and acetylation process in oligodendrocytes may contribute to diseases with oligodendroglial pathology.
The accumulation and aggregation of ?-synuclein (?-Syn) in glial cytoplasmic inclusions originating in oligodendrocytes is a characteristic hallmark of multiple system atrophy, a progressive adult onset neurodegenerative disorder. The origin of ?-Syn deposition in oligodendrocytes in multiple system atrophy is still unclear, but the uptake of ?-Syn from the environment after neuronal secretion has been discussed. The present study was undertaken to investigate the consequences of ?-Syn uptake from the environment in cultured oligodendroglial cells and its localization and potential to form intracellular aggregates in the absence or presence of the microtubule-associated protein tau, which has been demonstrated to act synergistically with ?-Syn. Primary rat brain oligodendrocytes and clonal oligodendroglial OLN-93 cells were incubated with human recombinant soluble and pre-aggregated ?-Syn. The data show that oligodendrocytes are capable to take up and internalize soluble and pre-aggregated ?-Syn from their growth medium. In a time-dependent manner, ?-Syn oligomerizes and small intracellular aggregates are formed. These do not exert cytotoxic responses or mitochondrial impairment. Oxidative stress exerted by hydrogen peroxide further promotes ?-Syn oligomer formation and leads to an enlargement of the aggregates. This process is not affected or modified by the presence of tau in OLN-93 cells. Furthermore, membrane lipid modification by docosahexaenoic acid promotes ?-Syn uptake and oligomerization, indicating that changing the membrane lipid composition and structure contributes to the protein aggregation process and pathological events. Hence, although ?-Syn taken up by oligodendrocytes from the environment is not toxic per se, under conditions of oxidative stress, which might occur during chronic disease progression and aging, aggregates are enlarged and eventually may contribute to cytotoxicity and cellular death.
Molecular subtyping of breast cancer is necessary for therapy selection and mandatory for all breast cancer patients. Metabolic alterations are considered a hallmark of cancer and several metabolic drugs are currently being investigated in clinical trials. However, the dependence of metabolic alterations on breast cancer subtypes has not been investigated on -omics scale. Thus, 204 estrogen receptor positive (ER+) and 67 estrogen receptor negative (ER-) breast cancer tissues were investigated using GC-TOFMS based metabolomics. 19 metabolites were detected as altered in a predefined training set (2/3 of tumors) and could be validated in a predefined validation set (1/3 of tumors). The metabolite changes included increases in beta-alanine, 2-hydroyglutarate, glutamate, xanthine and decreases in glutamine in the ER- subtype. Beta-alanine demonstrated the strongest change between ER- and ER+ breast cancer (fold change=2.4, p=1.5E-20). In a correlation analysis with genome-wide expression data in a subcohort of 154 tumors, we found a strong negative correlation (Spearman R=-0.62) between beta-alanine and 4-aminobutyrate aminotransferase (ABAT). Immunohistological analysis confirmed down-regulation of the ABAT protein in ER- breast cancer. In a Kaplan-Meier analysis of a large external expression data set, the ABAT transcript was demonstrated to be a positive prognostic marker for breast cancer (HR=0.6, p=3.2E-15).
The failure to clear misfolded or aggregated proteins from the cytoplasm of nerve cells and glia is a common pathogenic event in a variety of neurodegenerative disorders. This might be causally related to defects in the major proteolytic systems, i.e., the ubiquitin-proteasomal system and the autophagic pathway. Large protein aggregates and defective organelles are excluded from the proteasome. They can be degraded only by macroautophagy, which is a highly selective process. It requires p62 to act as a bridge connecting ubiquitinated protein aggregates and autophagosomes, and the tubulin deacetylase histone deacetylase 6 (HDAC6). HDAC6 has recently been identified as a constituent in Lewy bodies of Parkinson disease and glial cytoplasmic inclusions of multiple system atrophy. It is considered a sensor of proteasomal inhibition and a cellular stress surveillance factor, and plays a central role in autophagy by controlling the fusion process of autophagosomes with lysosomes. Upon proteasomal inhibition, HDAC6 is relocated and recruited to polyubiquitin-positive aggresomes. Tubulin acetylation is a major consequence of HDAC6 inhibition, and HDAC6 inhibition restores microtubule (MT)-dependent transport mechanisms in neurons. This suggests the involvement of HDAC6 in neurodegenerative diseases. Furthermore, the protein tau seems to be a substrate for HDAC6. Tau acetylation impairs MT assembly and promotes tau fibrillization in vitro. It has been suggested that acetylation and phosphorylation of tau at multiples sites may act synergistically in the pathogenesis of tau fibrillization. In this review, we will survey the process of aggresome formation, macroautophagy and the role of autophagosomal proteins and HDAC6 in inclusion body formation.
Protein aggregate formation may be the result of an impairment of the protein quality control system, e.g., the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) and the lysosomal autophagic pathway. For proteasomal degradation, proteins need to be covalently modified by ubiquitin and deubiquitinated before the substrates are proteolytically degraded. Deubiquitination is performed by a large family of proteases, the deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs). DUBs display a variety of functions and their inhibition may have pathological consequences. Using the broad specificity DUB inhibitor PR-619 we previously have shown that DUB inhibition leads to an overload of ubiquitinated proteins, to protein aggregate formation and subsequent inhibition of the UPS. This study was undertaken to investigate whether PR-619 modulates autophagic functions to possibly compensate the failure of the proteasomal system. Using the oligodendroglial cell line OLN-t40 and a new oligodendroglial cell line stably expressing GFP-LC3, we show that DUB inhibition leads to the activation of autophagy and to the recruitment of LC3 and of the ubiquitin binding protein p62 to the forming aggresomes without impairing the autophagic flux. Furthermore, PR-619 induced the transport of lysosomes to the forming aggregates in a process requiring an intact microtubule network. Further stimulation of autophagy by rapamycin did not prevent PR-619 aggregate formation but rather exerted cytotoxic effects. Hence, inhibition of DUBs by PR-619 activated the autophagic pathway supporting the hypothesis that the UPS and the autophagy-lysosomal pathway are closely linked together.
Multiple system atrophy is a parkinsonian neurodegenerative disorder. It is cytopathologically characterized by accumulation of the protein p25? in cell bodies of oligodendrocytes followed by accumulation of aggregated ?-synuclein in so-called glial cytoplasmic inclusions. p25? is a stimulator of ?-synuclein aggregation, and coexpression of ?-synuclein and p25? in the oligodendroglial OLN-t40-AS cell line causes ?-synuclein aggregate-dependent toxicity. In this study, we investigated whether the FAS system is involved in ?-synuclein aggregate dependent degeneration in oligodendrocytes and may play a role in multiple system atrophy. Using rat oligodendroglial OLN-t40-AS cells we demonstrate that the cytotoxicity caused by coexpressing ?-synuclein and p25? relies on stimulation of the death domain receptor FAS and caspase-8 activation. Using primary oligodendrocytes derived from PLP-?-synuclein transgenic mice we demonstrate that they exist in a sensitized state expressing pro-apoptotic FAS receptor, which makes them sensitive to FAS ligand-mediated apoptosis. Immunoblot analysis shows an increase in FAS in brain extracts from multiple system atrophy cases. Immunohistochemical analysis demonstrated enhanced FAS expression in multiple system atrophy brains notably in oligodendrocytes harboring the earliest stages of glial cytoplasmic inclusion formation. Oligodendroglial FAS expression is an early hallmark of oligodendroglial pathology in multiple system atrophy that mechanistically may be coupled to ?-synuclein dependent degeneration and thus represent a potential target for protective intervention.
The validated EndoPredict assay is a novel tool to predict the risk of metastases of patients with estrogen receptor positive, HER2 negative breast cancer treated with endocrine therapy alone. It has been designed to integrate genomic and clinical information and includes clinico-pathological factors such as tumor size and nodal status. The test is feasible in a decentral setting in molecular pathology laboratories. In this project, we investigated the performance of this test in clinical practice, and performed a retrospective evaluation of its impact on treatment decisions in breast cancer. During one year, EndoPredict assays from 167 patients could be successfully performed. For retrospective evaluation of treatment decisions, a questionnaire was sent to the clinical partner. Regarding the molecular EP class, samples from 56 patients (33.5%) had a low-risk, whereas 111 patients (66.5%) showed a high-risk gene profile. After integration of the clinicopathological factors the combined clinical and molecular score (EPclin) resulted in a low-risk group of 77 patients (46.4%), while 89 (53.6%) had a high risk EPclin score. The EPclin-based estimated median 10-year-risk for metastases with endocrine therapy alone was 11% for the whole cohort. The median handling time averaged three days (range: 0 to 11 days), 59.3% of the tests could be performed in three or less than three days. Comparison of pre- and post-test therapy decisions showed a change of therapy in 37.7% of patients. 16 patients (12.3%) had a change to an additional chemotherapy while 25.4% of patients (n?=?33) changed to an endocrine therapy alone. In 73 patients (56.2%) no change of therapy resulted. In 6.1% of patients (n?=?8), the patients did not agree to the recommendation of the tumor board. Our results show that the EndoPredict assay could be routinely performed in decentral molecular pathology laboratories and the results markedly change treatment decisions.
The assessment of papillary lesions continues to be a challenging area in breast radiology and pathology. The management of intraductal papillomas without atypia of the breast remains controversial. The purpose of the present study was to determine diagnostic accuracy of radiographical diagnosis, core biopsy, and surgical excision in papillary breast lesions.
Activation of lipid metabolism is an early event in carcinogenesis and a central hallmark of many cancers. However, the precise molecular composition of lipids in tumors remains generally poorly characterized. The aim of the present study was to analyze the global lipid profiles of breast cancer, integrate the results to protein expression, and validate the findings by functional experiments. Comprehensive lipidomics was conducted in 267 human breast tissues using ultraperformance liquid chromatography/ mass spectrometry. The products of de novo fatty acid synthesis incorporated into membrane phospholipids, such as palmitate-containing phosphatidylcholines, were increased in tumors as compared with normal breast tissues. These lipids were associated with cancer progression and patient survival, as their concentration was highest in estrogen receptor-negative and grade 3 tumors. In silico transcriptomics database was utilized in investigating the expression of lipid metabolism related genes in breast cancer, and on the basis of these results, the expression of specific proteins was studied by immunohistochemistry. Immunohistochemical analyses showed that several genes regulating lipid metabolism were highly expressed in clinical breast cancer samples and supported also the lipidomics results. Gene silencing experiments with seven genes [ACACA (acetyl-CoA carboxylase ?), ELOVL1 (elongation of very long chain fatty acid-like 1), FASN (fatty acid synthase), INSIG1 (insulin-induced gene 1), SCAP (sterol regulatory element-binding protein cleavage-activating protein), SCD (stearoyl-CoA desaturase), and THRSP (thyroid hormone-responsive protein)] indicated that silencing of multiple lipid metabolism-regulating genes reduced the lipidomic profiles and viability of the breast cancer cells. Taken together, our results imply that phospholipids may have diagnostic potential as well as that modulation of their metabolism may provide therapeutic opportunities in breast cancer treatment.
A common pathway underlying a variety of neurodegenerative disorders is the aggregation and deposition of misfolded proteins. Proteasomal inhibition has been demonstrated to promote the formation of intracellular inclusions. We have shown before that astrocytes respond to the treatment with the proteasome inhibitor MG-132 by aggresome formation and cytoskeletal disturbances, but unlike oligodendrocytes do not die by apoptotic cell death and have the capability to recover. This study was undertaken to elucidate if the autophagy-lysosomal pathway participates in the efficient recovery process in astrocytes and is modulated under conditions of proteasomal inhibition. The data show that the autophagic pathway was stimulated during a 24-h treatment with the proteasome inhibitor MG-132 in a time and concentration-dependent manner. It remained at an elevated level throughout a 24-h recovery period in the absence of MG-132 and participates in the aggregate clearing process. In the presence of the specific inhibitor of macroautophagy, 3-methyladenine, cell viability was impaired, aggregates were not as efficiently removed and HSP25, ?B-crystallin and ubiquitinated proteins remained in the insoluble protein fraction. LC3-II positive puncta, indicative of autophagosomes, were formed abundantly in the cells after proteasome inhibition and were seen in close association with the aggregates. Hence, the ability of astrocytes to upregulate autophagic degradation might contribute to their resistance against proteasomal stress situations and act as a compensatory mechanism when the proteasome is impaired.
?-Synuclein (?-syn) is the major constituent of Lewy bodies and glial cytoplasmic inclusions which are pathological hallmarks of neurodegenerative disorders like Parkinsons disease or multiple system atrophy (MSA), respectively. It accumulates and aggregates during the pathogenic process, and missense mutations, such as A53T, are increasing its probability of aggregate formation. Furthermore, ?-syn interacts with polyunsaturated fatty acids, and this interaction may promote the oligomerization process. To investigate whether membrane lipid modification by docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) modifies the aggregation process of ?-syn in oligodendroglial cells, we have used OLN-93 cells stably expressing the human ?-syn A53T mutation. Cells were supplemented with DHA (25 ?M) for 3 days and then subjected to oxidative stress (OS) exerted by hydrogen peroxide. The data show that modification of the oligodendroglial cell membranes by DHA followed by OS caused the formation of fibrillary ?-syn inclusions, a decrease in ?-syn solubility, and an increase in phosphorylation at serine 129, which has been suggested to play a proaggregatory role. The aggregates contain ?B-crystallin and ubiquitinated proteins and SUMO-1 immunoreactivity. SUMO-1 has been implicated in protein aggregation and identified as a constituent in inclusion bodies in MSA. Hence, membrane lipid modification in oligodendroglial cells promotes the formation of ?-syn inclusion bodies resembling protein aggregates in neurodegenerative disease. This effect is not only attributable to the A53T mutation but also is observable in OLN cells expressing wild-type ?-syn.
Oligodendrocytes are the myelin-forming cells of the CNS and guarantee proper nerve conduction. Sphingosine, one major component of myelin, has recently been identified to activate TRPM3, a member of the melastatin-related subfamily of transient receptor potential (TRP) channels. TRPM3 has been demonstrated to be expressed in brain with unknown cellular distribution. Here, we show for the first time that TRPM3 is expressed in oligodendrocytes in vitro and in vivo. TRPM3 is present during oligodendrocyte differentiation. Immunohistochemistry of adult rat brain slices revealed staining of white matter areas, which co-localized with oligodendrocyte markers. Analysis of the developmental distribution revealed that, prior to myelination, TRPM3 channels are localized on neurons. On oligodendrocytes they are found after the onset of myelination. RT-PCR studies showed that the transcription of TRPM3 splice variants is also developmentally regulated in vitro. Ca(2+) imaging approaches revealed the presence of a sphingosine-induced Ca(2+) entry mechanism in oligodendrocytes - with a pharmacological profile similar to the profile published for heterologously expressed TRPM3. These findings indicate that TRPM3 participates as a Ca(2+)-permeable and sphingosine-activated channel in oligodendrocyte differentiation and CNS myelination.
Filamentous tau-positive protein inclusions in neurons and glia are prominent features of a number of neurodegenerative disorders termed tauopathies. These inclusions are further characterized by the presence of heat shock proteins (HSPs). The group of small HSPs, namely, HSP27 and alphaB-crystallin, interact with the cytoskeleton, bind to nonnative proteins, and prevent their aggregation after stress. To further investigate their contribution to neurodegenerative diseases, we have analyzed the association of HSP27 with pathological lesions of tauopathies. Microarray and immunoblot analysis revealed that HSP27 is enhanced at the mRNA and protein levels in affected brains, and that it is associated with astrocytic pathology. The upregulation of HSP27 in tauopathies with gial pathology implies distinct mechanisms for glial and neuronal cells. This was sustained by cell culture studies, demonstrating that the small HSPs are specifically and prominently expressed in unstressed astrocytes and not in neurons and in neurons remained at a rather low level even after stress situations.
Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) are highly abundant in brain tissue, and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) might protect cells from oxidative stress (OS) during inflammation and demyelinating disorders, but also might exert pro-oxidant effects. Here we investigated if PUFA supplements lead to heat shock protein induction, altered cell survival properties and stress responses to OS exerted by hydrogen peroxide in oligodendroglial OLN-93 cells. The data show that supplements of various fatty acids (FA) with 18-22 carbons chain length and 2-6 double bonds led to PUFA enrichment in cellular membranes. Depending on the degree of desaturation, FA-supplements caused the up-regulation of heme oxygenase-1 (HSP32), a stress protein inducible by OS, and an increase in sensitivity to hydrogen peroxide-treatment. DHA, with the highest number of double bonds, was most effective. Co-treatment with DHA and the lipophilic vitamin E analogue alpha-tocopherol, suppressed heme oxygenase-1 up-regulation and cell survival was restored. Analysis of the lipid profile demonstrates that alpha-tocopherol not only has antioxidant capacities, but also directly modified the PUFA profile in cell membranes. Enrichment with higher omega-3, -6 and -9 PUFA and an increase in the biosynthesis rate of very long chain fatty acids, mainly changed the FA profile of ethanolamine and serine phosphoglycerides.
Small heat shock proteins (sHsps) are characteristically observed in glial cell inclusion bodies in a variety of neurodegenerative diseases. The small Hsp27 (HspB1) is stress inducible and participates in the defence against misfolded proteins. Under normal conditions, it forms oligomeric structures with molecular masses ranging from 50 to 800 kDa. These structures are highly dynamic and their dynamic organization is regulated by phosphorylation, which has been suggested to be a crucial factor in modulating the activity of the protein. To investigate the responses of Hsp27 to stress induced by proteasomal inhibition, and its state of phosphorylation and oligomerization during aggregate formation, three oligodendroglial cell lines stably expressing Hsp27 were established: OLN27 wild type, OLN27DDD expressing triple mutant Hsp27 in its phosphorylation mimicking form, and OLN27AAA, expressing non-phosphorylatable Hsp27. Our data show that the proteasomal inhibitor MG-132 promotes Hsp27 phosphorylation by activation of p38 mitogen activated protein kinase and leads to the formation of small oligomers. However, Hsp27 is recruited to aggresomes independently of its state of phosphorylation. After 24 h of treatment, all three cell lines had formed protein accumulations in the vicinity of the centrosome, but in cells over-expressing Hsp27, aggresome formation was delayed in comparison with OLN-93 oligodendroglial cells not expressing Hsp27.
Neuroendocrine breast carcinomas are rare but may represent either metastatic or primary lesions. So far, clinical and preoperative histopathological examinations do not distinguish properly between a primary or metastatic breast tumor. Due to any possible consequences following an appropriate treatment, markers which may be helpful for such a distinguishment are needed. We addressed this study in order to evaluate the immunohistochemical expression of GCDFP-15 and mammaglobin in a subset of pure neuroendocrine breast carcinomas (n = 9) and compared the expression profile with a cohort of non-mammary neuroendocrine tumors (n = 99). We observed in our study that solid neuroendocrine breast carcinomas are characterized by the expression of estrogen and progesterone receptors as well as GCDFP-15 and/or mammaglobin. GCDFP-15 was expressed in 6 out of 9 cases, mammaglobin was positive in 4 out of 9 tumors. In contrast, neuroendocrine tumors of the non-mammary cohort expressed neither GCDFP-15 nor mammaglobin. We conclude that mammaglobin and GCDFP-15 as markers of epithelial breast origin may work as a new and reliable diagnostic tool to distinguish primary endocrine tumors of the breast from a metastatic neuroendocrine disease. This is of utmost importance, especially for surgical management.
The accumulation and aggregation of alpha-synuclein in nerve cells and glia are characteristic features of a number of neurodegenerative diseases termed synucleinopathies. alpha-Synuclein is a highly soluble protein which in a nucleation dependent process is capable of self-aggregation. The causes underlying aggregate formation are not yet understood, impairment of the proteolytic degradation systems might be involved.
Core biopsy is considered to be a highly accurate method for gaining preoperative diagnosis of breast cancer. The purpose of this study is to compare the results of core biopsy with those of the surgical excision specimen.
The biological behavior and the optimal management of benign breast lesions with uncertain malignant potential, the so-called B3 lesions, found in breast needle core biopsies is still under debate. We addressed this study to compare histologic findings in B3 needle core biopsies with final excision specimens to determine associated rates of malignancy. Consecutive needle core biopsies were performed in a 3-year period (January 1, 2006-December 31, 2008). Biopsies were image-guided (31 by ultrasound, 85 stereotactic vacuum-assisted, 6 unknown) for evaluation of breast abnormalities. We reviewed 122 needle core biopsies with B3 lesions of 91 symptomatic patients and 31 screen-detected women and compared the B3 histologic subtypes with the final excision histology. A total of 1845 needle core biopsies were performed and B3 lesions comprised 6.6% of all B categories. The most common histologic subtype in biopsies was flat epithelia atypia in 35.2%, followed by papillary lesions in 21% and atypical ductal hyperplasia in 20%. Reports on excision specimens were available in 66% (81 patients). Final excision histology was benign in 73 (90.2%) and malignant in 8 (9.8%) patients (2 invasive cancer, 6 ductal carcinoma in situ). Of all B3 subtypes, atypical ductal hyperplasia and flat epithelial atypia were associated with malignancy, whereas only atypical ductal hyperplasia was accompanied by invasive cancer. Of all lesions, flat epithelial atypia was most frequently found in excision specimens (18%). In our study, flat epithelial atypia and atypical ductal hyperplasia are common lesions of the B3 category in needle core biopsies of the breast. Both lesions are associated with malignancy, whereas only atypical ductal hyperplasia was related to invasive cancer. We conclude that an excision biopsy after diagnosis of flat epithelial atypia is recommended depending on clinical and radiologic findings.
Oligodendrocytes, the myelin-forming cells of the central nervous system, are in culture characterized by an elaborate process network, terminating in flat membranous sheets that are rich in myelin-specific proteins and lipids, and spirally wrap axons forming a compact insulating layer in vivo. By analogy with other cell types, maintenance and stability of these processes, as well as the formation of the myelin sheath, likely rely on a pronounced cytoskeleton consisting of microtubules and microfilaments. While the specialized process of wrapping and compaction forming the myelin sheath is not well understood, considerably more is known about how cytoskeletal organization is mediated by extracellular and intracellular signals and other interaction partners during oligodendrocyte differentiation and myelination. Here, we review the current state of knowledge on the role of the oligodendrocyte cytoskeleton in differentiation with an emphasis on signal transduction mechanisms and will attempt to draw out implications for its significance in myelination.
Proteasomal dysfunction has been implicated in neurodegenerative diseases, and molecular chaperones may provide a first line of defence against protein aggregate formation. We have shown before that oligodendrocytes respond to proteasomal inhibition by the onset of apoptotic cell death, whereas astrocytes have a higher capability to cope with stressful conditions that might be causally related to their high constitutive level of HSP25. This study was undertaken to investigate the effects of the proteasomal inhibitor MG-132 on aggregate formation in astrocytes, and to test if HSP25 exerts a protective means. Our data show that upon proteasomal inhibition aggresomes are formed in astrocytes that contain the small HSPs, HSP25 and alpha B-crystallin, and ubiquitinated proteins. HSP expression is induced and HSP25, alpha B-crystallin and ubiquitinated proteins are translocated from the soluble to the detergent-insoluble fraction. Simultaneously, the cytoskeletal organization is disturbed, microfilaments are fragmented, GFAP intermediate filaments and microtubules surround the aggresome, and mitochondria are assembled in these structures. Mitochondria membrane potential, however, stays intact. Aggresome formation and apoptotic cell death do not correlate. After the removal of MG-132, the observed effects are reversible. MG-132 promotes the formation of small oligomers of HSP25, which have been connected to the protection of the microfilament system. Downregulation of HSP25 by siRNA approach causes actin filament breakdown in control cells in the absence of stress stimuli, and sensitizes astrocytes against stress induced by proteasomal inhibition. Hence, HSP25 enables astrocytes to prevent irreversible damage and to recover after removal of the proteasomal inhibitor MG-132.
Multiple system atrophy is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by accumulation of aggregated Ser-129-phosphorylated alpha-synuclein in oligodendrocytes. p25alpha is an oligodendroglial protein that potently stimulates alpha-synuclein aggregation in vitro. To model multiple system atrophy, we coexpressed human p25alpha and alpha-synuclein in the rat oligodendroglial cell line OLN-93 and observed a cellular response characterized by a fast retraction of microtubules from the cellular processes to the perinuclear region followed by a protracted development of apoptosis. This response was dependent on phosphorylation at Ser-129 in alpha-synuclein as demonstrated by site-directed mutagenesis. Treatment of the cells with the kinase inhibitor 2-dimethylamino-4,5,6,7-tetrabromo-1H benzimidazole that targets kinases like casein kinase 2, and polo-like kinases abrogated the toxicity. The polo-like kinase inhibitor BI 2536 caused apoptosis in the model. Ser-129 phosphorylation was linked to the formation of phosphorylated oligomers detectable by immunoblotting, and their formation was inhibited by 2-dimethylamino-4,5,6,7-tetrabromo-1H benzimidazole. The process of microtubule retraction was also dependent on aggregation as demonstrated by the protective effect of treating the cells with the specific peptide inhibitor of alpha-synuclein aggregation ASI1D and the non-selective inhibitors Congo Red and baicalein. The fast microtubule retraction was followed by the development of the apoptotic markers: activated caspase-3, phosphatidylserine externalization, nuclear condensation, and fragmentation. These markers could all be blocked by the inhibitors of phosphorylation, aggregation, and caspase-3. Hence, the model predicts that both Ser-129 phosphorylation and aggregation control the toxic alpha-syn pathway in oligodendroglial cells and may represent therapeutic intervention points in multiple system atrophy.
alpha-Synuclein is the major building block of cytoplasmic inclusions in neurodegenerative disorders named synucleinopathies. These inclusion bodies often contain the small heat shock protein alphaB-crystallin and the microtubule-associated protein tau. Oxidative modification of alpha-synuclein has been linked to fibril formation, and alpha-synuclein aggregation may induce the fibrillization of tau. To study alpha-synuclein aggregate formation, we have engineered oligodendroglial cells (OLN-93 cells) to stably express the longest human isoform of tau and wild-type alpha-synuclein or the A53T alpha-synuclein mutation. Under normal growth conditions, small punctuated alpha-synuclein aggregates were formed, which were more abundant in cells expressing the A53T mutation. After exposure to oxidative stress, protein inclusions were enlarged and were positive for thioflavin S, but the solubility of alpha-synuclein was not altered. Oxidative stress followed by proteasomal inhibition caused the occurrence of larger thioflavin S-positive inclusions, immunoreactive for tau and alphaB-crystallin, thus resembling glial cell inclusion bodies. Furthermore, this double stress situation led to a decrease in alpha-synuclein solubility, and alphaB-crystallin and HSP90 were present in the insoluble fraction. The formation and recruitment of tau to thioflavin S-positive protein aggregates in OLN-93 cells only expressing tau in the absence of alpha-synuclein, either after oxidative or proteasomal stress or both, was not observable. The data indicate that oxidatively modified alpha-synuclein is degraded by the proteasome and that it plays a pro-aggregatory role for tau in this cell culture model system.
Oligodendroglial inclusion bodies characterize a subset of neurodegenerative diseases. Multiple system atrophy (MSA) is characterized by ?-synuclein glial cytoplasmic inclusions and progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is associated with glial tau inclusions. The ubiquitin homologue, SUMO-1, has been identified in inclusion bodies in MSA, located in discrete sub-domains in ?-synuclein-positive inclusions. We investigated SUMO-1 associated with oligodendroglial inclusion bodies in brain tissue from MSA and PSP and in glial cell models. We examined MSA and PSP cases and compared to age-matched normal controls. Fluorescence immunohistochemistry revealed frequent SUMO-1 sub-domains within and surrounding inclusions bodies in both diseases and showed punctate co-localization of SUMO-1 and the lysosomal marker, cathepsin D, in affected brain regions. Cell counting data revealed that 70-75 % of lysosomes in inclusion body-positive oligodendrocytes were SUMO-1-positive consistently across MSA and PSP cases, compared to 20 % in neighbouring inclusion body negative oligodendrocytes and 10 % in normal brain tissue. Hsp90 co-localized with some SUMO-1 puncta. We examined the SUMO-1 status of lysosomes in 1321N1 human glioma cells over-expressing ?-synuclein and in immortalized rat oligodendrocyte cells over-expressing the four repeat form of tau following treatment with the proteasome inhibitor, MG132. We also transfected 1321N1 cells with the inherently aggregation-prone huntingtin exon 1 mutant, HttQ74-GFP. Each cell model showed the association of SUMO-1-positive lysosomes around focal cytoplasmic accumulations of ?-synuclein, tau or HttQ74-GFP, respectively. Association of SUMO-1 with lysosomes was also detected in glial cells bearing ?-synuclein aggregates in a rotenone-lesioned rat model. SUMO-1 labelling of lysosomes showed a major increase between 24 and 48 h post-incubation of 1321N1 cells with MG132 resulting in an increase in a 90 kDa SUMO-1-positive band that was immunopositive for Hsp90 and immunoprecipitated with an anti-SUMO-1 antibody. That SUMO-1 co-localizes with a subset of lysosomes in neurodegenerative diseases with glial protein aggregates and in glial cell culture models of protein aggregation suggests a role for SUMO-1 in lysosome function.
Multiple system atrophy (MSA) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by striatonigral degeneration and olivo-pontocerebellar atrophy. The histopathological hallmark of MSA is glial cytoplasmic inclusions (GCI) within oligodendrocytes, accompanied by neuronal degeneration. MSA is a synucleinopathy, and ?-Synuclein (?-Syn) is the major protein constituent of the GCI. It is unclear how the neuronal ?-Syn protein accumulates in oligodendrocytes. We tested the hypothesis that oligodendrocytes can take up neuronal-secreted ?-Syn as part of the pathogenic mechanisms leading to MSA. We report that increases in the degree of ?-Syn soluble oligomers or intracellular ?-Syn levels, enhance its secretion from cultured MN9D dopaminergic cells, stably expressing the protein. In accord, we show that primary oligodendrocytes from rat brain and oligodendroglial cell lines take-up neuronal-secreted or exogenously added ?-Syn from their conditioning medium. This uptake is concentration-, time-, and clathrin-dependent. Utilizing the demonstrated effect of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) to enhance ?-Syn neuropathology, we show an in vivo effect for brain docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels on ?-Syn localization to oligodendrocytes in brains of a mouse model for synucleinopathies, expressing human A53T ?-Syn cDNA under the PrP promoter. Hence, pathogenic mechanisms leading to elevated levels of ?-Syn in neurons underlie neuronal secretion and subsequent uptake of ?-Syn by oligodendrocytes in MSA.
Formaldehyde is a neurotoxic environmental pollutant that can also be produced in the body by certain enzymatic reactions. To test for the potential consequences of an exposure of oligodendrocytes to formaldehyde, we used OLN-93 cells as a model system. Treatment with formaldehyde altered the cellular glutathione (GSH) content of these cells by inducing a rapid time- and concentration-dependent export of GSH. Half-maximal effects were observed for a formaldehyde concentration of about 0.2 mM. While the basal GSH efflux from OLN-93 cells was negligible even when the cellular GSH content was doubled by pre-incubation of the cells with cadmium chloride, the formaldehyde-stimulated export increased almost proportionally to the cellular GSH content. In addition, the stimulated GSH export required the presence of formaldehyde and was almost completely abolished after removal of the aldehyde. Analysis of kinetic parameters of the formaldehyde-induced GSH export revealed similar K(m) and V(max) values of around 100 nmol/mg and 40 nmol/(hmg), respectively, for both OLN-93 cells and cultured astrocytes. The transporter responsible for the formaldehyde-induced GSH export from OLN-93 cells is most likely the multidrug resistance protein 1 (Mrp1), since this transporter is expressed in these cells and since the inhibitor MK571 completely prevented the formaldehyde-induced GSH export. The rapid export of GSH from formaldehyde-treated viable oligodendroglial cells is likely to compromise the cellular antioxidative and detoxification potential which may contribute to the known neurotoxicity of formaldehyde.
Changes in energy metabolism of the cells are common to many kinds of tumors and are considered a hallmark of cancer. Gas chromatography followed by time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC-TOFMS) is a well-suited technique to investigate the small molecules in the central metabolic pathways. However, the metabolic changes between invasive carcinoma and normal breast tissues were not investigated in a large cohort of breast cancer samples so far.
A pathological hallmark of many neurodegenerative diseases is the aggregation of proteins. Protein aggregate formation may be linked to a failure of the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) and/or the autophagy pathway. The UPS involves the ubiquitination of proteins followed by proteasomal degradation. Deubiquitination of target proteins is performed by proteases called deubiquitinating proteins (DUBs). Inhibition of DUBs may lead to the dysregulation of homeostasis and have pathological consequences. To assess the effects of DUB-inhibition, we have used the oligodendroglial cell line, OLN-t40, stably expressing the longest human tau isoform. Cells were incubated with PR-619, a broad-range, reversible inhibitor of ubiquitin isopeptidases. Incubation with PR-619 led to morphological changes, the upregulation of heat shock proteins (HSP), including HSP70 and ?B-crystallin, and to protein aggregates near the MTOC, containing ubiquitin, HSPs, and the ubiquitin binding protein p62, which may provide a link between the UPS and autophagy. Thus, inhibition of DUB activity caused stress responses and the formation of protein aggregates resembling pathological inclusions observed in aggregopathies. Furthermore, PR-619 led to the stabilization of the microtubule network, possibly through the modulation of tau phosphorylation, and small tau deposits assembled near the MTOC. Hence, organization and integrity of the cytoskeleton were affected, which is particularly important for the maintenance of the cellular architecture and intracellular transport processes, and essential for the functionality and survival of neural cells. Our data demonstrate that DUB inhibitors provide a useful tool to elucidate the manifold mechanisms of DUB functions in cells and their dysregulation in neurodegenerative diseases. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Ubiquitin Drug Discovery and Diagnostics.
The extension of processes of oligodendrocyte (OLG) and their precursor cells are crucial for migration, axonal contact and myelination. Here we show that a non-lethal oxidative stress induced by 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NP) elicited a rapid shortening of processes (~24%) in primary OLGs and in oligodendroglial cell line (OLN-93) cells (~36%) as compared with vehicle-exposed cells. This was reversible and prevented by antioxidants. Proteomics of OLG lysates with and without 3-NP treatment yielded collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP-2) as a candidate effector molecule. Inhibition of rho kinase was sufficient to prevent process retraction in both OLGs and OLN-93 cells. Oxidative stress increased phosphorylation of CRMP-2 at T555 that was completely prevented by Y27632. Moreover, transfection of OLN-93 cells with the mutant CRMP-2 T555A which cannot be phosphorylated by rho kinase, prevented process shortening induced by 3-NP as compared with wild-type CRMP-2. Our results suggest a role for endogenous reactive oxygen species in a pathway that regulates OLG process extension. The vulnerability of late myelinated neurons in the adult brain and the presence of white matter pathology in human dementias warrant the study of this oligodendroglial pathway in the early stages of neurodegenerative conditions characterized by oxidative stress.
?-Synuclein-containing glial cytoplasmic inclusions (GCIs) originating in oligodendrocytes are the characteristic hallmark for neuropathological diagnosis of multiple system atrophy (MSA). ?-Synuclein can be degraded either by the proteasomal machinery or by autophagy, a lysosomal pathway which involves the formation of autophagosomes. The autophagosome takes up polyubiquitinated proteins via the autophagosomal protein LC3 and the ubiquitin binding protein p62. In the present study, neuropathological examination of seven MSA cases revealed that LC3-immunoreactivity is found to be associated with ?-synuclein-positive GCIs. These are also prominently stained by antibodies against p62 and ubiquitin, indicating that the autophagic pathway is upregulated during pathogenesis, which might be due to a persistent downregulation of proteasomal activity. To further address this question in a cellular context, we have investigated whether proteasomal inhibition in cultured rat brain oligodendrocytes promotes the recruitment of LC3 and p62 to protein aggregates. The data show that the autophagic marker LC3-II is upregulated and LC3 is recruited to the growing protein aggregates in cultured oligodendrocytes when the proteasome is impaired. However, aggregated proteins remain in the oligodendroglial cytoplasm and cannot be cleared efficiently. In conclusion, autophagy and the ubiquitin proteasome system are closely connected, and the presence of LC3-positive vesicles in GCIs indicates that macroautophagy participates in MSA pathogenesis.
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