The ectopic expression of the glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide receptor (GIPR) in the human adrenal gland causes significant hypercortisolemia after ingestion of each meal and leads to Cushing's syndrome, implying that human GIPR activation is capable of robustly activating adrenal glucocorticoid secretion. In this study, we transiently transfected the human GIPR expression vector into cultured human adrenocortical carcinoma cells (H295R) and treated them with GIP to examine the direct link between GIPR activation and steroidogenesis. Using quantitative RT-PCR assay, we examined gene expression of steroidogenic related proteins, and carried out immunofluorescence analysis to prove that forced GIPR overexpression directly promotes production of steroidogenic enzymes CYP17A1 and CYP21A2 at the single cell level. Immunofluorescence showed that the transfection efficiency of the GIPR gene in H295R cells was approximately 5%, and GIP stimulation enhanced CYP21A2 and CYP17A1 expression in GIPR-introduced H295R cells (H295R-GIPR). Interestingly, these steroidogenic enzymes were also expressed in the GIPR (-) cells adjacent to the GIPR (+) cells. The mRNA levels of a cholesterol transport protein required for all steroidogenesis, StAR, and steroidogenic enzymes, HSD3?2, CYP11A1, CYP21A2, and CYP17A1 increased 1.2-2.1-fold in GIP-stimulated H295R-GIPR cells. These changes were reflected in the culture medium in which 1.5-fold increase in the cortisol concentration was confirmed. Furthermore, the levels of adenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) receptor and ACTH precursor proopiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA were upregulated 2- and 1.5-fold, respectively. Immunofluorescence showed that ACTH expression was detected in GIP-stimulated H295R-GIPR cells. An ACTH-receptor antagonist significantly inhibited steroidogenic gene expression and cortisol production. Immunostaining for both CYP17A1 and CYP21A2 was attenuated in cells treated with ACTH receptor antagonists as well as with POMC siRNA. These results demonstrated that GIPR activation promoted production and release of ACTH, and that steroidogenesis is activated by endogenously secreted ACTH following GIP administration, at least in part, in H295R cells.
Aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) is classically known to be activated by xenobiotics such as dioxins and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Although it has been reported that PAHs are contained in roasted coffee beans, in general coffee beverages are not considered to be AhR activators. We tested whether exposure to coffee would activate AhR in cultured cells.
The estrogen receptor (ER) is a key molecule for growth of breast cancers. It has been a successful target for treatment of breast cancers. Elucidation of the ER expression mechanism is of importance for designing therapeutics for ER-positive breast cancers. However, the detailed mechanism of ER stability is still unclear. Here, we report that histone acetyltransferase Hbo1 promotes destabilization of estrogen receptor ? (ER?) in breast cancers through lysine 48-linked ubiquitination. The acetyltransferase activity of Hbo1 is linked to its activity for ER? ubiquitination. Depletion of Hbo1 and anti-estrogen treatment displayed a potent growth suppression of breast cancer cell line. Hbo1 modulated transcription by ER?. Mutually exclusive expression of Hbo1 and ER? was observed in roughly half of the human breast tumors examined in the present study. Modulation of ER stability by Hbo1 in breast cancers may provide a novel therapeutic possibility.
Skull base metastasis from differentiated thyroid carcinoma including follicular thyroid carcinoma (FTC) and papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) is a rare clinical entity. Eighteen FTC cases and 10 PTC cases showing skull base metastasis have been reported. The most common symptom of skull base metastasis from FTC and PTC is cranial nerve dysfunction. Bone destruction and local invasion to the surrounding soft tissues are common on radiological imaging. Skull base metastases can be the initial clinical presentation of FTC and PTC in the presence of silent primary sites. The possibility of skull base metastasis from FTC and PTC should be considered in patients with the clinical symptoms of cranial nerve dysfunction and radiological findings of bone destruction. A variety of genetic alterations in thyroid tumors have been identified to have a fundamental role in their tumorigenesis. Molecular histochemical studies are useful for elucidating the histopathological features of thyroid carcinoma. Recent molecular findings may provide novel molecular-based treatment strategies for thyroid carcinoma.
We modified and tested scaffold/matrix attachment region (S/MAR) episomal vectors. The new vectors would be useful in obtaining cells stably expressing fluorescent protein-tagged transgenes with small, mostly within 10-fold cell-to-cell fluctuations. In the vectors, the same transcript directs episomal replication and expression of transgene/antibiotic marker, and only antibiotic selection without any other extra steps was sufficient to obtain desired stable cells, including those expressing two different proteins simultaneously. Furthermore, the two test cases (expression of human growth hormone in AtT20 and four protein kinase C isoforms in HEK293) would prove to be useful in visualizing and analyzing regulatory processes involving these proteins.
There have been several reports of temozolomide (TMZ) treatment of pituitary carcinomas and atypical adenomas. O(6)-methyl-guanine-DNA methyltransferase is not the sole molecule determining the sensitivity to TMZ in pituitary carcinomas and atypical adenomas. The Japan Society of Hypothalamic and Pituitary Tumors study suggests that MSH6, one of mismatch repair pathway enzyme, fulfills a contributory role to the efficacy of TMZ treatment for pituitary carcinomas and atypical adenomas. The preserved MSH6 function might be essential for the responsiveness to TMZ treatment in pituitary carcinomas and atypical adenomas.
The case presented here describes the clinical evolution of a pituitary carcinoma from an atypical prolactinoma after temozolomide (TMZ) treatment. The mechanism of acquisition of TMZ resistance was analyzed.
In situ hybridization (ISH) at the electron microscopic (EM) level is essential for elucidating the intracellular distribution and role of mRNA in protein synthesis. EM-ISH is considered to be an important tool for clarifying the intracellular localization of mRNA and the exact site of pituitary hormone synthesis on the rough endoplasmic reticulum. A combined ISH and immunohistochemistry (IHC) under EM (EM-ISH&IHC) approach has sufficient ultrastructural resolution, and provides two-dimensional images of the subcellular localization of pituitary hormone and its mRNA in a pituitary cell. The advantages of semiconductor nanocrystals (quantum dots, Qdots) and confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) enable us to obtain three-dimensional images of the subcellular localization of pituitary hormone and its mRNA. Both EM-ISH&IHC and ISH & IHC using Qdots and CLSM are useful for understanding the relationships between protein and mRNA simultaneously in two or three dimensions. CLSM observation of rab3B and SNARE proteins such as SNAP-25 and syntaxin has revealed that both rab3B and SNARE system proteins play important roles and work together as the exocytotic machinery in anterior pituitary cells. Another important issue is the intracellular transport and secretion of pituitary hormone. We have developed an experimental pituitary cell line, GH3 cell, which has growth hormone (GH) linked to enhanced yellow fluorescein protein (EYFP). This stable GH3 cell secretes GH linked to EYFP upon stimulation by Ca²+ influx or Ca²+ release from storage. This GH3 cell line is useful for the real-time visualization of the intracellular transport and secretion of GH. These three methods from conventional immunohistochemistry and fluorescein imaging allow us to consecutively visualize the process of transcription, translation, transport and secretion of anterior pituitary hormone.
Elevated parathyroid hormone-related protein (PTHrP) is responsible for humoral hypercalcemia of malignancy (HHM), which is of clinical significance in treatment of terminal patients with malignancies. Steroid hormones were known to cause suppression of PTHrP expression. However, detailed studies linking multiple steroid hormones to PTHrP expression are lacking. Here we studied PTHrP expression in response to steroid hormones in four cell lines with excessive PTHrP production. Our study established that steroid hormones negatively regulate PTHrP expression. Vitamin D receptor, estrogen receptor ?, glucocorticoid receptor, and progesterone receptor, were required for repression of PTHrP expression by the cognate ligands. A notable exception was the androgen receptor, which was dispensable for suppression of PTHrP expression in androgen-treated cells. We propose a pathway(s) involving nuclear receptors to suppress PTHrP expression.
Combined in situ hybridization (ISH) and immunohistochemistry (IHC) under electron microscopy (EM-ISH & IHC) has sufficient ultrastructural resolution to provide two-dimensional images of subcellular localization of pituitary hormone and its mRNA in a pituitary cell. The advantages of semiconductor nanocrystals (Quantum dots; Qdots) and confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) enable us to obtain three-dimensional images of the subcellular localization of pituitary hormone and its mRNA. Both EM-ISH & IHC and ISH & IHC using Qdots and CLSM are useful for understanding the relationship between protein and mRNA simultaneously in two or three dimensions. CLSM observation of rab3B and SNARE proteins such as SNAP-25 and syntaxin revealed that both rab3B and SNARE system proteins play an important role and work together as the exocytotic machinery in anterior pituitary cells. Another important issue is the intracellular transport and secretion of pituitary hormone. An experimental pituitary cell line, the GH3 cell, in which growth hormone (GH) is linked to enhanced yellow fluorescein protein (EYFP), has been developed. This stable GH3 cell secretes GH linked to EYFP upon being stimulated by Ca(2+) influx or Ca(2+) release from storage. This GH3 cell is useful for real-time visualization of the intracellular transport and secretion of GH. These three methods enable us to visualize consecutively the processes of transcription, translation, transport, and secretion of pituitary hormone.
Adult growth hormone (GH) deficiency (AGHD) in Japan is diagnosed based on peak GH concentrations during GH provocative tests such as GHRP-2 stimulation test. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the ability of serum insulin-like growth factor-1 (sIGF-1) and urinary GH (uGH) at the time of awakening to diagnose AGHD. Fifty-nine patients with pituitary disease (32 men and 27 women; age 20-85 y (57.5 ± 15.5, mean ± SD) underwent GHRP-2 stimulation and sIGF-1 testing. Thirty-six and 23 patients were diagnosed with and without severe AGHD, respectively based on a peak GH response of <9 ng/mL to GHRP-2 stimulation. Serum IGF-1 was evaluated as a standard deviation score (IGF-1 SDS) based on age and sex. We determined whether uGH levels in urine samples from 42 of the 59 patients at awakening were above or below the sensitivity limit. We evaluated IGF-1 SDS and uGH levels in a control group of 15 healthy volunteers. Values for IGF-1 SDS were significantly lower in patients with, than without (-2.07 ± 1.77 vs.-0.03 ± 0.92, mean ± SD; p < 0.001) AGHD whereas the range of IGF-1 SDS substantially overlapped at > -1.4. IGF-1 SDS discriminated AGHD more effectively in patients aged ?60 years. The ?2 test revealed a statistical relationship between uGH and AGHD (test statistic: 7.0104 ? ?2 (1; 0.01) = 6.6349). When IGF-1 SDS is < -1.4 or uGH is below the sensitivity limit, AGHD can be detected with high sensitivity.
Saposin D-deficient (Sap-D(-/-)) mice develop polydipsia/polyuria and die prematurely due to renal failure with robust hydronephrosis. Such symptoms emerged when they were around 3 mo of age. To investigate the pathogenesis of their water mishandling, we attempted to limit water supply and followed sequential changes of physiological and biochemical parameters. We also analyzed renal histological changes at several time points. At 3 mo old just before water restriction challenge was started, their baseline arginine vasopressin level was comparable to the wild-type (WT) level. Twenty-four-hour water deprivation and desamino d-arginine vasopressin administration improved polydipsia and polyuria to certain degrees. However, creatinine concentrations in Sap-D(-/-) mice were significantly higher than those in WT mice, suggesting that some renal impairment already emerged in the affected mice at this age. Renal histological analyses revealed that renal tubules and collecting ducts were expanded after 3 mo old. After 6 mo old, vacuolar formation was observed, many inflammatory cells migrated around the ducts, and epithelial monolayer cells of tubular origin were replaced by plentiful cysts of various sizes. At 10?12 mo old, severe cystic deformity appeared. On the other hand, 8-mo-long water restriction started at 4 mo old dramatically improved tubular damage and restored once-dampened amount of tubular aquaporin2 protein to the WT level. Furthermore, 10-mo-long water restriction ameliorated their renal function. Remarkably, by continuing water restriction thereafter, overall survival period became comparable with that of the WT. Together, polyuria, devastating renal tubular lesions, and renal failure were ameliorated by the mere 10-mo-long water restriction, which would trigger lethal dehydration if the disease were to be caused by any processes other than primary polydipsia. Our study demonstrates that long-term water restriction surely improved renal histopathological changes leading to prevention of premature death in Sap-D(-/-) mice.
The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) is a transcription factor that is activated by xenobiotic substances such as dioxin. After activation, it binds to dioxin response elements of DNA, thereby inducing transcription of a variety of xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes. To investigate whether AhR-activating substances accumulate in patients with endocrine disorders, we tested serum samples for AhR-stimulating activity.
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