Glioblastomas (GB) are aggressive primary brain tumors. Helix-loop-helix (HLH, ID proteins) and basic HLH (bHLH, e.g., Olig2) proteins are transcription factors that regulate stem cell proliferation and differentiation throughout development and into adulthood. Their convergence on many oncogenic signaling pathways combined with the observation that their overexpression in GB correlates with poor clinical outcome identifies these transcription factors as promising therapeutic targets. Important dimerization partners of HLH/bHLH proteins are E proteins that are necessary for nuclear translocation and DNA binding. Here, we overexpressed a wild type or a dominant negative form of E47 (dnE47) that lacks its nuclear localization signal thus preventing nuclear translocation of bHLH proteins in long-term glioma cell lines and in glioma-initiating cell lines and analyzed the effects in vitro and in vivo. While overexpression of E47 was sufficient to induce apoptosis in absence of bHLH proteins, dnE47 was necessary to prevent nuclear translocation of Olig2 and to achieve similar proapoptotic responses. Transcriptional analyses revealed downregulation of the antiapoptotic gene BCL2L1 and the proproliferative gene CDC25A as underlying mechanisms. Overexpression of dnE47 in glioma-initiating cell lines with high HLH and bHLH protein levels reduced sphere formation capacities and expression levels of Nestin, BCL2L1, and CDC25A. Finally, the in vivo induction of dnE47 expression in established xenografts prolonged survival. In conclusion, our data introduce a novel approach to jointly neutralize HLH and bHLH transcriptional networks activities, and identify these transcription factors as potential targets in glioma.
Fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) is a key regulator of metabolism under conditions of stress such as starvation, obesity, and hypothermia. Rapid induction of FGF21 is also observed in experimental models of pancreatitis, and FGF21 reduces tissue damage observed in these models, suggesting a nonmetabolic function. Pancreatitis is a debilitating disease with significant morbidity that greatly increases the risk of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. The goals of this study were to examine the regulation and function of FGF21 in acinar cell injury, specifically in a mouse model of pancreatic injury (Mist1(-/-)). Mist1(-/-) mice exhibit acinar cell disorganization, decreased acinar cell communication and exocytosis, and increased sensitivity to cerulein-induced pancreatitis (CIP). Examination of Fgf21 expression in Mist1(-/-) mice by qRT-PCR, Northern blot, and Western blot analyses showed a marked decrease in pancreatic Fgf21 expression before and after induction of CIP compared with C57Bl/6 mice. To determine whether the loss of FGF21 accounted for the Mist1(-/-) phenotypes, we generated Mist1(-/-) mice overexpressing human FGF21 from the ApoE promoter (Mist1(-/-)ApoE-FGF21). Reexpression of FGF21 partially mitigated pancreatic damage in Mist1(-/-) tissue based on reduced intrapancreatic enzyme activation, reduced expression of genes involved in fibrosis, and restored cell-cell junctions. Interestingly, alteration of Fgf21 expression in Mist1(-/-) tissue was not simply due to a loss of direct transcriptional regulation by MIST1. Chromatin immunopreciptation indicated that the loss of Fgf21 in the Mist1(-/-) pancreas is due, in part, to epigenetic silencing. Thus, our studies identify a new role for FGF21 in reducing acinar cell injury and uncover a novel mechanism for regulating Fgf21 gene expression.
Influenza is a viral infection that can lead to serious complications and death(s) in vulnerable groups if not diagnosed and managed in a timely manner. This study was conducted to improve the accuracy of predicting influenza through various clinical and statistical models.
Gene expression is affected by modifications to histone core proteins within chromatin. Changes in these modifications, or epigenetic reprogramming, can dictate cell fate and promote susceptibility to disease. The goal of this study was to determine the extent of epigenetic reprogramming in response to chronic stress that occurs following ablation of MIST1 (Mist1(-/-) ), which is repressed in pancreatic disease. Chromatin immunoprecipitation for trimethylation of lysine residue 4 on histone 3 (H3K4Me3) in purified acinar cells from wild type and Mist1(-/-) mice was followed by Next Generation sequencing (ChIP-seq) or ChIP-qPCR. H3K4Me3-enriched genes were assessed for expression by qRT-PCR in pancreatic tissue before and after induction of cerulein-induced pancreatitis. While most of H3K4Me3-enrichment is restricted to transcriptional start sites, >25% of enrichment sites are found within, downstream or between annotated genes. Less than 10% of these sites were altered in Mist1(-/-) acini, with most changes in H3K4Me3 enrichment not reflecting altered gene expression. Ingenuity Pathway Analysis of genes differentially-enriched for H3K4Me3 revealed an association with pancreatitis and pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma in Mist1(-/-) tissue. Most of these genes were not differentially expressed but several were readily induced by acute experimental pancreatitis, with significantly increased expression in Mist1(-/-) tissue relative to wild type mice. We suggest that the chronic cell stress observed in the absence of MIST1 results in epigenetic reprogramming of genes involved in promoting pancreatitis to a poised state, thereby increasing the sensitivity to events that promote disease.
We recently demonstrated that the expression of the importin ? subtype is switched from ?2 to ?1 during neural differentiation in mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and that this switching has a major impact on cell differentiation. In this study, we report a cell-fate determination mechanism in which importin ?2 negatively regulates the nuclear import of certain transcription factors to maintain ESC properties. The nuclear import of Oct6 and Brn2 was inhibited via the formation of a transport-incompetent complex of the cargo bound to a nuclear localization signal binding site in importin ?2. Unless this dominant-negative effect was downregulated upon ESC differentiation, inappropriate cell death was induced. We propose that although certain transcription factors are necessary for differentiation in ESCs, these factors are retained in the cytoplasm by importin ?2, thereby preventing transcription factor activity in the nucleus until the cells undergo differentiation.
There is little information about influenza among the Pakistani population. In order to assess the trends of Influenza-like-Illness (ILI) and to monitor the predominant circulating strains of influenza viruses, a country-wide lab-based surveillance system for ILI and Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) with weekly sampling and reporting was established in 2008. This system was necessary for early detection of emerging novel influenza subtypes and timely response for influenza prevention and control.
Alcohol abuse is a leading cause of pancreatitis in humans. However, rodent models suggest that alcohol only sensitizes the pancreas to subsequent insult, indicating that additional factors play a role in alcohol-induced pancreatic injury. The goal of this study was to determine if an absence of MIST1, a transcription factor required for complete differentiation of pancreatic acinar cells in mice, increased the sensitivity to alcohol.
Nuclear import of karyophilic proteins is carried out by a variety of mechanisms. We previously showed that two basic helix-loop-helix proteins, NeuroD1 and E47, synergistically affect each others nuclear import. In this study, we dissected the molecular pathways underlying nuclear import of the NeuroD1/E47 heterodimer. In vitro nuclear import assays indicated that importin ? family members are the major nuclear import receptors for E47. However, inhibition of importin ? resulted in cytoplasmic retention of E47 that could be rescued by its binding partner, NeuroD1, through heterodimerization. In addition, nuclear import of NeuroD1 was importin ? independent but importin ?1 dependent. In primary neurons, localization of endogenous E47 was not affected by importin ? inhibition, suggesting that neuronal E47 could be imported into the nucleus as a heterodimer with NeuroD1 by using importin ?1 alone. We also found that E47 had similar nuclear import characteristics in C2C12 cells, where E47 heterodimerized with MyoD, another helix-loop-helix protein, suggesting functional conservation within the same family of transcription factors. Collectively, our data reveal that E47 is imported into the nucleus via multiple pathways, depending on the molecular binding mode, establishing a previously uncharacterized cross-talk between two distinct nuclear import pathways.
The small GTPase Ran plays important roles in multiple aspects of cellular function. Maximal RanGAP activity is achieved with the aid of RanBP1 and/or presumably of RanBP2. Here, we show that RanBP1-knockout mice are unexpectedly viable, and exhibit male infertility due to a spermatogenesis arrest, presumably caused by down-regulation of RanBP2 during spermatogenesis. Indeed, siRNA-mediated depletion of RanBP2 caused severe cell death only in RanBP1-deficient MEFs, indicating that simultaneous depletion of RanBP1 and RanBP2 severely affects normal cell viability. Collectively, we conclude that the dramatic decrease in "RanBP" activity impairs germ cell viability and affects spermatogenesis decisively in RanBP1-knockout mice.
We characterize the previously unrecognized phenomenon of axotomy-induced axonogenesis in rat embryonic hippocampal neurons in vitro and elucidate the underlying mechanism. New neurites arose from cell bodies after axotomy and grew. These neurites were Tau-1-positive, and the injured axons showed negative immunoreactivity for Tau-1. Axonogenesis was delayed in these neurons by inhibiting the dynein-dynactin complex through the overexpression of p50. Importin ?, which was locally translated after axotomy, was associated with the dynein-importin ? complex and was required for axonogenesis. Taken together, these results suggest that retrograde transport of injury-induced signals in injured axons play key roles in the axotomy-induced axonogenesis of hippocampal neurons.
The transition from undifferentiated pluripotent cells to terminally differentiated neurons is coordinated by a repertoire of transcription factors. NeuroD1 is a type II basic helix loop helix (bHLH) transcription factor that plays critical roles in neuronal differentiation and maintenance in the central nervous system. Its dimerization with E47, a type I bHLH transcription factor, leads to the transcriptional regulation of target genes. Mounting evidence suggests that regulating the localization of transcription factors contributes to the regulation of their activity during development as defects in their localization underlie a variety of developmental disorders. In this study, we attempted to understand the nuclear import mannerisms of NeuroD1 and E47. We found that the nuclear import of NeuroD1 and E47 is energy-dependent and involves the Ran-mediated pathway. Herein, we demonstrate that NeuroD1 and E47 can dimerize inside the cytoplasm before their nuclear import. Moreover, this dimerization promotes nuclear import as the nuclear accumulation of NeuroD1 was enhanced in the presence of E47 in an in vitro nuclear import assay, and NLS-deficient NeuroD1 was successfully imported into the nucleus upon E47 overexpression. NeuroD1 also had a similar effect on the nuclear accumulation of NLS-deficient E47. These findings suggest a novel role for dimerization that may promote, at least partially, the nuclear import of transcription factors allowing them to function efficiently in the nucleus.
The heat shock response (HSR) induces the production of heat shock proteins (HSPs) through the activation of heat shock factors (HSF). HSF binding protein (HSBP) is reported to modulate the function of HSF by binding to their trimer and hence to regulate HSR. This report describes the role of OsHSBP1 and OsHSBP2 in the regulation of the HSR and seed development of rice. Both genes expressed ubiquitously in all tissues under normal growth conditions while their expression levels were significantly increased during recovery after heat shock treatment. Subcellular localization revealed the cytosol-nuclear localization of both OsHSBP1 and OsHSBP2 in onion epidermal cells. The yeast two-hybrid assay depicted the self-binding ability of both genes. Both genes were also important for seed development, as their knock-down lines were associated with significant seed abortion. The thermotolerance assay revealed that OsHSBP1 and OsHSBP2 are negative regulators of HSR and involved in acquired thermotolerance but not in basal thermotolerance since their over-expression transgenic lines pre-heated at sublethal temperature, showed significantly decreased seedling survival after heat shock treatment. Furthermore, antioxidant activity and gene expression of catalase and peroxidase was significantly increased in knock-down transgenic seedlings of OsHSBP1 and OsHSBP2 after heat stress compared with the wild type. The expression of heat specific HSPs was also increased significantly in knockdown line of both genes but in a specific manner, suggesting the involvement of HSBP genes in different pathways. Overall, the present study reveals the role of OsHSBP1 and OsHSBP2 in the regulation of the HSR and seed development of rice.
In early 2009, a novel influenza A(H1N1) virus that emerged in Mexico and United States rapidly disseminated worldwide. The spread of this virus caused considerable morbidity with over 18000 recorded deaths. The new virus was found to be a reassortant containing gene segments from human, avian and swine influenza viruses.
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