Skeletal muscle stem cells (MuSCs), the major source for skeletal muscle regeneration in vertebrates, are in a state of cell cycle arrest in adult skeletal muscles. Prior evidence suggests that embryonic muscle progenitors proliferate and differentiate to form myofibres and also self-renew, implying that MuSCs, derived from these cells, acquire quiescence later during development. Depletion of Dicer in adult MuSCs promoted their exit from quiescence, suggesting microRNAs are involved in the maintenance of quiescence. Here we identified miR-195 and miR-497 that induce cell cycle arrest by targeting cell cycle genes, Cdc25 and Ccnd. Reduced expression of MyoD in juvenile MuSCs, as a result of overexpressed miR-195/497 or attenuated Cdc25/Ccnd, revealed an intimate link between quiescence and suppression of myogenesis in MuSCs. Transplantation of cultured MuSCs treated with miR-195/497 contributed more efficiently to regenerating muscles of dystrophin-deficient mice, indicating the potential utility of miR-195/497 for stem cell therapies.
The nucleophilic esterification of 5- and 7-membered N-phenylcyclic ammonium salts resulted in distinctive regioselectivity, despite their comparable ring strain in the ground states relative to the corresponding cyclopentane and cycloheptane (both 25.9 kJ mol(-1)). The former underwent a selective ring-opening reaction, while the latter predominantly underwent ring-emitting with concurrent ring-opening reactions. A DFT study of the model compounds revealed that the regioselection in the 5- and 7-membered azacycloalkane quaternary salts is plausibly directed by the transition state ring conformation, and not by the ground state ring strain. Remarkably, at the ring-opening transition state, the 5-membered cyclic skeletal structure expands toward the unstrained and thus less frustrated 6-membered cyclohexane conformation. On the other hand, the 7-membered counterpart expands at the ring-opening transition state toward the more frustrated 8-membered cyclooctane conformation to promote the alternative ring-emitting process.
A triply fused tetracyclic macromolecular K(3,3) graph has been constructed through electrostatic self-assembly of a uniformly sized dendritic polymer precursor having six cyclic ammonium salt end groups carrying two units of a trifunctional carboxylate counteranions, and subsequent covalent conversion by the ring-opening reaction of cyclic ammonium salt groups at an elevated temperature under dilution. The K(3,3) graph product was isolated from the two constitutional isomers by means of a recycling SEC technique, as the hydrodynamic volume of the triply fused tetracyclic K(3,3) product is remarkably contracted in comparison with another isomer having a ladder form in solution.
CD8(+) T cell exhaustion represents a major hallmark of chronic HIV infection. Two key transcription factors governing CD8(+) T cell differentiation, T-bet and Eomesodermin (Eomes), have previously been shown in mice to differentially regulate T cell exhaustion in part through direct modulation of PD-1. Here, we examined the relationship between these transcription factors and the expression of several inhibitory receptors (PD-1, CD160, and 2B4), functional characteristics and memory differentiation of CD8(+) T cells in chronic and treated HIV infection. The expression of PD-1, CD160, and 2B4 on total CD8(+) T cells was elevated in chronically infected individuals and highly associated with a T-bet(dim)Eomes(hi) expressional profile. Interestingly, both resting and activated HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells in chronic infection were almost exclusively T-bet(dim)Eomes(hi) cells, while CMV-specific CD8(+) T cells displayed a balanced expression pattern of T-bet and Eomes. The T-bet(dim)Eomes(hi) virus-specific CD8(+) T cells did not show features of terminal differentiation, but rather a transitional memory phenotype with poor polyfunctional (effector) characteristics. The transitional and exhausted phenotype of HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells was longitudinally related to persistent Eomes expression after antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation. Strikingly, these characteristics remained stable up to 10 years after ART initiation. This study supports the concept that poor human viral-specific CD8(+) T cell functionality is due to an inverse expression balance between T-bet and Eomes, which is not reversed despite long-term viral control through ART. These results aid to explain the inability of HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells to control the viral replication post-ART cessation.
Aberrant activation of the Hedgehog (Hh) pathway has been reported in several malignancies. We previously demonstrated that knockdown of GLI2 inhibited proliferation of osteosarcoma cells through regulation of the cell cycle. In this study, we analyzed the function of GLI2 in the pathogenesis of osteosarcoma metastasis. Immunohistochemical studies showed that GLI2 was overexpressed in patient osteosarcoma specimens. Knockdown of GLI2 inhibited migration and invasion of osteosarcoma cells. In contrast, the forced expression of constitutively active GLI2 in mesenchymal stem cells promoted invasion. In addition, xenograft models showed that knockdown of GLI2 decreased lung metastasis of osteosarcomas. To examine clinical applications, we evaluated the efficacy of arsenic trioxide (ATO), which is a Food and Drug Administration-approved antitumor drug, on osteosarcoma cells. ATO treatment suppressed the invasiveness of osteosarcoma cells by inhibiting the transcriptional activity of GLI2. In addition, the combination of Hh inhibitors including ATO, vismodegib and GANT61 prevented migration and metastasis of osteosarcoma cells. Consequently, our findings suggested that GLI2 regulated metastasis as well as the progression of osteosarcomas. Inhibition of the GLI2 transcription may be an effective therapeutic method for preventing osteosarcoma metastasis.
Nuclear factor-?B (NF-?B) is a key regulator of cancer progression and the inflammatory effects of disease. To identify inhibitors of DNA binding to NF-?B, we developed a new homogeneous method for detection of sequence-specific DNA-binding proteins. This method, which we refer to as DSE-FRET, is based on two phenomena: protein-dependent blocking of spontaneous DNA strand exchange (DSE) between partially double-stranded DNA probes, and fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET). If a probe labeled with a fluorophore and quencher is mixed with a non-labeled probe in the absence of a target protein, strand exchange occurs between the probes and results in fluorescence elevation. In contrast, blocking of strand exchange by a target protein results in lower fluorescence intensity. Recombinant human NF-?B (p50) suppressed the fluorescence elevation of a specific probe in a concentration-dependent manner, but had no effect on a non-specific probe. Competitors bearing a NF-?B binding site restored fluorescence, and the degree of restoration was inversely correlated with the number of nucleotide substitutions within the NF-?B binding site of the competitor. Evaluation of two NF-?B inhibitors, Evans Blue and dehydroxymethylepoxyquinomicin ([-]-DHMEQ), was carried out using p50 and p52 (another form of NF-?B), and IC50 values were obtained. The DSE-FRET technique also detected the differential effect of (-)-DHMEQ on p50 and p52 inhibition. These data indicate that DSE-FRET can be used for high throughput screening of anticancer drugs targeted to DNA-binding proteins.
Surgical site infection (SSI) has not been extensively studied in musculoskeletal tumors (MST) owing to the rarity of the disease. We analyzed incidence and risk factors of SSI in MST. SSI incidence was evaluated in consecutive 457 MST cases (benign, 310 cases and malignant, 147 cases) treated at our institution. A detailed analysis of the clinical background of the patients, pre- and postoperative hematological data, and other factors that might be associated with SSI incidence was performed for malignant MST cases. SSI occurred in 0.32% and 12.2% of benign and malignant MST cases, respectively. The duration of the surgery (P = 0.0002) and intraoperative blood loss (P = 0.0005) was significantly more in the SSI group than in the non-SSI group. We established the musculoskeletal oncological surgery invasiveness (MOSI) index by combining 4 risk factors (blood loss, operation duration, preoperative chemotherapy, and the use of artificial materials). The MOSI index (0-4 points) score significantly correlated with the risk of SSI, as demonstrated by an SSI incidence of 38.5% in the group with a high score (3-4 points). The MOSI index score and laboratory data at 1 week after surgery could facilitate risk evaluation and prompt diagnosis of SSI.
Cancer is believed to arise primarily through accumulation of genetic mutations. Although induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) generation does not require changes in genomic sequence, iPSCs acquire unlimited growth potential, a characteristic shared with cancer cells. Here, we describe a murine system in which reprogramming factor expression in vivo can be controlled temporally with doxycycline (Dox). Notably, transient expression of reprogramming factors in vivo results in tumor development in various tissues consisting of undifferentiated dysplastic cells exhibiting global changes in DNA methylation patterns. The Dox-withdrawn tumors arising in the kidney share a number of characteristics with Wilms tumor, a common pediatric kidney cancer. We also demonstrate that iPSCs derived from Dox-withdrawn kidney tumor cells give rise to nonneoplastic kidney cells in mice, proving that they have not undergone irreversible genetic transformation. These findings suggest that epigenetic regulation associated with iPSC derivation may drive development of particular types of cancer.
The interaction between follicular T helper cells (TFH) and B cells in the lymph nodes and spleen has a major impact on the development of antigen-specific B cell responses during infection or vaccination. Recent studies described a functional equivalent of these cells among circulating CD4 T cells, referred to as peripheral TFH cells. Here, we characterize the phenotype and in vitro B cell helper activity of peripheral TFH populations, as well as the effect of HIV infection on these populations. In co-culture experiments we confirmed CXCR5+ cells from HIV-uninfected donors provide help to B cells and more specifically, we identified a CCR7(high)CXCR5(high)CCR6(high)PD-1(high) CD4 T cell population that secretes IL-21 and enhances isotype-switched immunoglobulin production. This population is significantly decreased in treatment-naïve, HIV-infected individuals and can be recovered after anti-retroviral therapy. We found impaired immunoglobulin production in co-cultures from HIV-infected individuals and found no correlation between the frequency of peripheral TFH cells and memory B cells, or with neutralization activity in untreated HIV infection in our cohort. Furthermore, we found that within the peripheral TFH population, the expression level of TFH-associated genes more closely resembles a memory, non-TFH population, as opposed to a TFH population. Overall, our data identify a heterogeneous population of circulating CD4 T cells that provides in vitro help to B cells, and challenges the origin of these cells as memory TFH cells.
Estaquier et al. provide commentary on our paper that elucidated the mechanism by which HIV-1 causes cell death in activated CD4 T lymphocytes. We showed that proviral DNA integration triggers DNA-PK dependent death signaling, leading to p53 phosphorylation and cell demise (Cooper A et al. Nature 498:376-379, 2013). They have raised several hypothetical points that we further clarify here.
We report a new methodology for studying diffusion of individual polymer chains in a melt state, with special emphasis on the effect of chain topology. A perylene diimide fluorophore was incorporated into the linear and cyclic poly(THF)s, and real-time diffusion behavior of individual chains in a melt of linear poly(THF) was measured by means of a single-molecule fluorescence imaging technique. The combination of mean squared displacement (MSD) and cumulative distribution function (CDF) analysis demonstrated the broad distribution of diffusion coefficient of both the linear and cyclic polymer chains in the melt state. This indicates the presence of spatiotemporal heterogeneity of the polymer diffusion which occurs at much larger time and length scales than those expected from the current polymer physics theory. We further demonstrated that the cyclic chains showed marginally slower diffusion in comparison with the linear counterparts, to suggest the effective suppression of the translocation through the threading-entanglement with the linear matrix chains. This coincides with the higher activation energy for the diffusion of the cyclic chains than of the linear chains. These results suggest that the single-molecule imaging technique provides a powerful tool to analyze complicated polymer dynamics and contributes to the molecular level understanding of the chain interaction.
Unprecedented tetracyclic polymer topologies with spiro- and a bridged-type quatrefoil forms are effectively constructed through an alkyne-azide, click-linking reaction by employing a kyklo-telechelic poly(tetrahydrofuran), poly(THF), precursor having an azide group, obtained through an electrostatic self-assembly and covalent fixation (ESA-CF) process, and complementary tetrafunctional alkyne reagents of either a pentaerythritol derivative or a four-armed star telechelic polymer precursor.
Programmed Death 1 (PD-1) expression by human/simian immunodeficiency virus (HIV/SIV)-specific CD8 T cells has been associated with defective cytokine production and reduced in vitro proliferation capacity. However, the cellular mechanisms that sustain PD-1(high) virus-specific CD8 T cell responses during chronic infection are unknown. Here, we show that the PD-1(high) phenotype is associated with accelerated in vivo CD8 T cell turnover in SIV-infected rhesus macaques, especially within the SIV-specific CD8 T cell pool. Mathematical modeling of 5-bromo-2 deoxyuridine (BrdU) labeling dynamics demonstrated a significantly increased generation rate of PD-1(high) compared to PD-1(low) CD8 T cells in all memory compartments. Simultaneous analysis of Ki67 and BrdU kinetics revealed a complex in vivo turnover profile whereby only a small fraction of PD-1(high) cells, but virtually all PD-1(low) cells, returned to rest after activation. Similar kinetics operated in both chronic and acute SIV infection. Our data suggest that the persistence of PD-1(high) SIV-specific CD8 T cells in chronic infection is maintained in vivo by a mechanism involving high production coupled with a high disappearance rate.
Alternative splicing generates multiple transcripts from a single gene, and cell-type-specific splicing profiles are important for the properties and functions of the cells. Recently, somatic cells have been shown to undergo dedifferentiation after the forced expression of transcription factors. However, it remains unclear whether somatic cell splicing is reorganized during reprogramming. Here, by combining deep sequencing with high-throughput absolute qRT-PCR, we show that somatic splicing profiles revert to pluripotent ones during reprogramming. Remarkably, the splicing pattern in pluripotent stem cells resembles that in testes, and the regulatory regions have specific characteristics in length and sequence. Furthermore, our siRNA screen has identified RNA-binding proteins that regulate splicing events in iPSCs. We have then demonstrated that two of the RNA-binding proteins, U2af1 and Srsf3, play a role in somatic cell reprogramming. Our results indicate that the drastic alteration in splicing represents part of the molecular network involved in the reprogramming process.
Here we highlight the latest advances in HIV vaccine concepts that will expand our knowledge on how to elicit effective acquisition-prevention and/or control of simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) replication in the nonhuman primate (NHP) model.
Human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) has infected more than 60 million people and caused nearly 30 million deaths worldwide, ultimately the consequence of cytolytic infection of CD4(+) T cells. In humans and in macaque models, most of these cells contain viral DNA and are rapidly eliminated at the peak of viraemia, yet the mechanism by which HIV-1 induces helper T-cell death has not been defined. Here we show that virus-induced cell killing is triggered by viral integration. Infection by wild-type HIV-1, but not an integrase-deficient mutant, induced the death of activated primary CD4 lymphocytes. Similarly, raltegravir, a pharmacologic integrase inhibitor, abolished HIV-1-induced cell killing both in cell culture and in CD4(+) T cells from acutely infected subjects. The mechanism of killing during viral integration involved the activation of DNA-dependent protein kinase (DNA-PK), a central integrator of the DNA damage response, which caused phosphorylation of p53 and histone H2AX. Pharmacological inhibition of DNA-PK abolished cell death during HIV-1 infection in vitro, suggesting that processes which reduce DNA-PK activation in CD4 cells could facilitate the formation of latently infected cells that give rise to reservoirs in vivo. We propose that activation of DNA-PK during viral integration has a central role in CD4(+) T-cell depletion, raising the possibility that integrase inhibitors and interventions directed towards DNA-PK may improve T-cell survival and immune function in infected individuals.
Transcription factors (TFs) are able to regulate differentiation-related processes, including dedifferentiation and direct conversion, through the regulation of cell type-specific transcriptional profiles. However, the functional interactions between the TFs regulating different transcriptional profiles are not well understood. Here, we show that the TFs capable of inducing cell type-specific transcriptional profiles prevent the dedifferentiation induced by TFs for pluripotency. Of the large number of TFs expressed in a neural-lineage cell line, we identified a subset of TFs that, when overexpressed, strongly interfered with the dedifferentiation triggered by the procedure to generate induced pluripotent stem cells. This interference occurred through a maintenance mechanism of the cell type-specific transcriptional profile. Strikingly, the maintenance activity of the interfering TF set was strong enough to induce the cell line-specific transcriptional profile when overexpressed in a heterologous cell type. In addition, the TFs that interfered with dedifferentiation in hepatic-lineage cells involved TFs with known induction activity for hepatic-lineage cells. Our results suggest that dedifferentiation suppresses a cell type-specific transcriptional profile, which is primarily maintained by a small subset of TFs capable of inducing direct conversion. We anticipate that this functional correlation might be applicable in various cell types and might facilitate the identification of TFs with induction activity in efforts to understand differentiation.
A regioselective nucleophilic esterification upon six-membered, thus considered unstrained, azacyclohexane quaternary salts has been disclosed by DFT calculations using a model compound and subsequent experimental studies of nucleophilic substitution on N-phenyl-3,3-dimethylpiperidinium salt groups at the polymer chain ends by carboxylate anions. An exclusive ring-emitting esterification was proposed theoretically and confirmed experimentally to produce a simple ester group, in contrast to less robust amino-ester linkages through an alternative ring-opening process with strained five-membered ammonium salts. This reaction was subsequently applied to a prototypical process of an electrostatic self-assembly and covalent fixation (ESA-CF) technique to produce a ring polymer having simple ester linking units.
Cyclic molecules provide better stability for their aggregates. Typically in nature, the unique cyclic cell membrane lipids allow thermophilic archaea to inhabit extreme conditions. By mimicking the biological design, the robustness of self-assembled synthetic nanostructures is expected to be improved. Here we report topology effects by cyclized polymeric amphiphiles against their linear counterparts, demonstrating a drastic enhancement in the thermal, as well as salt stability of self-assembled micelles. Furthermore, through coassembly of the linear and cyclic amphiphiles, the stability was successfully tuned for a wide range of temperatures and salt concentrations. The enhanced thermal/salt stability was exploited in a halogen exchange reaction to stimulate the catalytic activity. The mechanism for the enhancement was also investigated. These topology effects by the cyclic amphiphiles offer unprecedented opportunities in polymer materials design unattainable by traditional means.
For regenerative therapy using induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology, cell type of origin to be reprogrammed should be chosen based on accessibility and reprogramming efficiency. Some studies report that iPSCs exhibited a preference for differentiation into their original cell lineages, while others did not. Therefore, the type of cell which is most appropriate as a source for iPSCs needs to be clarified.
There is a gradient of ?-catenin expression along the colonic crypt axis with the highest levels at the crypt bottom. In addition, colorectal cancers show a heterogeneous subcellular pattern of ?-catenin accumulation. However, it remains unclear whether different levels of Wnt signalling exert distinct roles in the colonic epithelium. Here, we investigated the dose-dependent effect of canonical Wnt activation on colonic epithelial differentiation by controlling the expression levels of stabilised ?-catenin using a doxycycline-inducible transgenic system in mice. We show that elevated levels of Wnt signalling induce the amplification of Lgr5+ cells, which is accompanied by crypt fission and a reduction in cell proliferation among progenitor cells. By contrast, lower levels of ?-catenin induction enhance cell proliferation rates of epithelial progenitors without affecting crypt fission rates. Notably, slow-cycling cells produced by ?-catenin activation exhibit activation of Notch signalling. Consistent with the interpretation that the combination of Notch and Wnt signalling maintains crypt cells in a low proliferative state, the treatment of ?-catenin-expressing mice with a Notch inhibitor turned such slow-cycling cells into actively proliferating cells. Our results indicate that the activation of the canonical Wnt signalling pathway is sufficient for de novo crypt formation, and suggest that different levels of canonical Wnt activations, in cooperation with Notch signalling, establish a hierarchy of slower-cycling stem cells and faster-cycling progenitor cells characteristic for the colonic epithelium.
Intermittent fasting is one of the most effective dietary restriction regimens that extend life span in C. elegans and mammals. Fasting-stimulus responses are key to the longevity response; however, the mechanisms that sense and transduce the fasting stimulus remain largely unknown. Through a comprehensive transcriptome analysis in C. elegans, we find that along with the FOXO transcription factor DAF-16, AP-1 (JUN-1/FOS-1) plays a central role in fasting-induced transcriptional changes. KGB-1, one of the C. elegans JNKs, acts as an activator of AP-1 and is activated in response to fasting. KGB-1 and AP-1 are involved in intermittent fasting-induced longevity. Fasting-induced upregulation of the components of the SCF E3 ubiquitin ligase complex via AP-1 and DAF-16 enhances protein ubiquitination and reduces protein carbonylation. Our results thus identify a fasting-responsive KGB-1/AP-1 signaling pathway, which, together with DAF-16, causes transcriptional changes that mediate longevity, partly through regulating proteostasis.
Castlemans disease is a rare disease characterized by lymph node hyperplasia. Its occurrence in the retroperitoneal space has rarely been reported, making its preoperative diagnosis difficult. Here, we report a case of retroperitoneal Castlemans disease, which radiologically resembled paraspinal schwannoma.
The Hedgehog pathway is activated in various types of malignancies. We previously reported that inhibition of SMO or GLI prevents osteosarcoma growth in vitro and in vivo. Recently, it has been reported that arsenic trioxide (ATO) inhibits cancer growth by blocking GLI transcription. In this study, we analyzed the function of ATO in the pathogenesis of osteosarcoma. Real-time PCR showed that ATO decreased the expression of Hedgehog target genes, including PTCH1, GLI1, and GLI2, in human osteosarcoma cell lines. WST-1 assay and colony formation assay revealed that ATO prevented osteosarcoma growth. These findings show that ATO prevents GLI transcription and osteosarcoma growth in vitro. Flow cytometric analysis showed that ATO promoted apoptotic cell death. Comet assay showed that ATO treatment increased accumulation of DNA damage. Western blot analysis showed that ATO treatment increased the expression of ?H2AX, cleaved PARP, and cleaved caspase-3. In addition, ATO treatment decreased the expression of Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL. These findings suggest that ATO treatment promoted apoptotic cell death caused by accumulation of DNA damage. In contrast, Sonic Hedgehog treatment decreased the expression of ?H2AX induced by cisplatin treatment. ATO re-induced the accumulation of DNA damage attenuated by Sonic Hedgehog treatment. These findings suggest that ATO inhibits the activation of Hedgehog signaling and promotes apoptotic cell death in osteosarcoma cells by accumulation of DNA damage. Finally, examination of mouse xenograft models showed that ATO administration prevented the growth of osteosarcoma in nude mice. Because ATO is an FDA-approved drug for treatment of leukemia, our findings suggest that ATO is a new therapeutic option for treatment of patients with osteosarcoma.
Muscle satellite cells (SCs) are stem cells that reside in skeletal muscles and contribute to regeneration upon muscle injury. SCs arise from skeletal muscle progenitors expressing transcription factors Pax3 and/or Pax7 during embryogenesis in mice. However, it is unclear whether these fetal progenitors possess regenerative ability when transplanted in adult muscle. Here we address this question by investigating whether fetal skeletal muscle progenitors (FMPs) isolated from Pax3(GFP/+) embryos have the capacity to regenerate muscle after engraftment into Dystrophin-deficient mice, a model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. The capacity of FMPs to engraft and enter the myogenic program in regenerating muscle was compared with that of SCs derived from adult Pax3(GFP/+) mice. Transplanted FMPs contributed to the reconstitution of damaged myofibers in Dystrophin-deficient mice. However, despite FMPs and SCs having similar myogenic ability in culture, the regenerative ability of FMPs was less than that of SCs in vivo. FMPs that had activated MyoD engrafted more efficiently to regenerate myofibers than MyoD-negative FMPs. Transcriptome and surface marker analyses of these cells suggest the importance of myogenic priming for the efficient myogenic engraftment. Our findings suggest the regenerative capability of FMPs in the context of muscle repair and cell therapy for degenerative muscle disease.
The establishment of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) has enabled the production of in vitro, patient-specific cell models of human disease. In vitro recreation of disease pathology from patient-derived hiPSCs depends on efficient differentiation protocols producing relevant adult cell types. However, myogenic differentiation of hiPSCs has faced obstacles, namely, low efficiency and/or poor reproducibility. Here, we report the rapid, efficient, and reproducible differentiation of hiPSCs into mature myocytes. We demonstrated that inducible expression of myogenic differentiation1 (MYOD1) in immature hiPSCs for at least 5 days drives cells along the myogenic lineage, with efficiencies reaching 70-90%. Myogenic differentiation driven by MYOD1 occurred even in immature, almost completely undifferentiated hiPSCs, without mesodermal transition. Myocytes induced in this manner reach maturity within 2 weeks of differentiation as assessed by marker gene expression and functional properties, including in vitro and in vivo cell fusion and twitching in response to electrical stimulation. Miyoshi Myopathy (MM) is a congenital distal myopathy caused by defective muscle membrane repair due to mutations in DYSFERLIN. Using our induced differentiation technique, we successfully recreated the pathological condition of MM in vitro, demonstrating defective membrane repair in hiPSC-derived myotubes from an MM patient and phenotypic rescue by expression of full-length DYSFERLIN (DYSF). These findings not only facilitate the pathological investigation of MM, but could potentially be applied in modeling of other human muscular diseases by using patient-derived hiPSCs.
Flow cytometric analysis is a reliable and convenient method for investigating molecules at the single cell level. Previously, recombinant human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) strains were constructed that express a fluorescent reporter, either enhanced green fluorescent protein, or DsRed, which allow the monitoring of HIV-1-infected cells by flow cytometry. The present study further investigated the potential of these recombinant viruses in terms of whether the HIV-1 fluorescent reporters would be helpful in evaluating viral replication based on fluorescence intensity. When primary CD4(+) T cells were infected with recombinant viruses, the fluorescent reporter intensity measured by flow cytometry was associated with the level of CD4 downmodulation and Gag p24 expression in infected cells. Interestingly, some HIV-1-infected cells, in which CD4 was only moderately downmodulated, were reporter-positive but Gag p24-negative. Furthermore, when the activation status of primary CD4(+) T cells was modulated by T cell receptor-mediated stimulation, we confirmed the preferential viral production upon strong stimulation and showed that the intensity of the fluorescent reporter within a proportion of HIV-1-infected cells was correlated with the viral replication level. These findings indicate that a fluorescent reporter encoded within HIV-1 is useful for the sensitive detection of productively infected cells at different stages of infection and for evaluating cell-associated viral replication at the single cell level.
A tandem alkyne-azide addition, i.e., click, and an olefin metathesis condensation, i.e., clip, reactions in conjunction with an electrostatic self-assembly and covalent fixation (ESA-CF) process, have been demonstrated as effective means to produce constructions of programmed folding of polymers having doubly fused tricyclic and triply fused tetracyclic topologies. Thus, a series of cyclic poly(tetrahydrofuran), poly(THF), precursors having an allyloxy group and an alkyne group (Ia), an allyloxy group and an azide group (Ib), and two alkyne groups (Ic) at the opposite positions was prepared by means of the ESA-CF method. The subsequent click reactions of Ia with a linear telechelic poly(THF) precursor having azide end groups (Id) and of Ib with Ic afforded a bridged dicyclic polymer (IIa) and a tandem spiro tricyclic precursor (IIb), respectively, both having two allyloxy groups at the opposite positions of the ring units. Finally, the intramolecular metathesis condensation reaction of IIa and of IIb in the presence of a Grubbs catalyst was performed to construct effectively a doubly fused tricyclic and a triply fused tetracyclic polymer topologies (III and IV), respectively.
Biofilms play a pivotal role in medical device-related infections. However, epidemiological analysis of biofilm formation and genotyping among clinical methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) isolates from patients with orthopaedic infections has rarely been reported. A total of 168 MRSA strains were examined: 23 strains from patients with device-related infection (the device group); 55 from patients with device-non-related infection (the nondevice group); and 90 from asymptomatic nasal carriers (the colonization group). Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis analysis and five genotyping methods including agr typing were performed. Biofilm formation was quantified using a microtitre plate assay. The device group had a significantly higher incidence of agr-2 than the colonization group (78.3% vs. 34.4%, P=0.001). The biofilm index of the agr-2 (0.523 ± 0.572) strains was significantly higher than those of agr-1 (0.260 ± 0.418, P<0.0001) and agr-3 (0.379 ± 0.557, P=0.045). The prevalence of strong biofilm formers in the device group (43.5%) was significantly higher than that in the nondevice group (12.7%, P=0.003) and the colonization group (20.0%, P=0.020). agr-2 MRSA strains may be more likely to cause orthopaedic device infection because of their strong biofilm formation ability.
Novel nickel-based catalytic systems for the C-H arylation of azoles with haloarenes and aryl triflates have been developed. We have established that Ni(OAc)(2)/bipy/LiOtBu serves as a general catalytic system for the coupling with aryl bromides and iodides as aryl electrophiles. For couplings with more challenging electrophiles, such as aryl chlorides and triflates, the Ni(OAc)(2)/dppf (dppf = 1,1-bis(diphenylphosphino)ferrocene) system was found to be effective. Thiazoles, benzothiazoles, oxazoles, benzoxazoles, and benzimidazoles can be used as the heteroarene coupling partner. Upon further investigation, we discovered a new protocol for the present coupling using Mg(OtBu)(2) as a milder and less expensive alternative to LiOtBu. Attempts to reveal the mechanism of this nickel-catalyzed heterobiaryl coupling are also described. This newly developed methodology has been successfully applied to the syntheses of febuxostat (a xanthine oxidase inhibitor that is effective for the treatment of gout and hyperuricemia), tafamidis (effective for the treatment of TTR amyloid polyneuropathy), and texaline (a natural product having antitubercular activity).
The Hedgehog pathway functions as an organizer in embryonic development. Recent studies have shown that mutation of the PTCH1 gene involved in the Hedgehog pathway affects rhabdomyosarcoma development. However, the expression of Hedgehog pathway molecules in human rhabdomyosarcoma cells has not been well clarified. In addition, the effect of pharmacological inhibition of the Hedgehog pathway is not known. We investigated the expression of the genes involved in the Hedgehog pathway using human rhabdomyosarcoma cell lines and biopsy specimens. Further, we evaluated the effect of pharmacological inhibition of the Hedgehog pathway using cyclopamine or GANT61 by WST assay, cell proliferation assay and cell death detection assay. Real-time PCR revealed that human rhabdomyosarcoma cell lines and biopsy specimens overexpressed the following genes: Sonic hedgehog, Indian hedgehog, Desert hedgehog, PTCH1, SMO, GLI1, GLI2 and ULK3. Immunohistochemistry revealed that rhabdomyosarcoma cell lines and biopsy specimens expressed SMO and GLI2. Inhibition of SMO by cyclopamine slowed the growth of human rhabdomyosarcoma cell lines. Similarly, inhibition of GLI by GANT61 slowed the growth of human rhabdomyosarcoma cell lines. Inhibition of cell proliferation and apoptotic cell death together prevented the growth of rhabdomyosarcoma cells by cyclopamine and GANT61 treatment. Our findings suggest that pharmacological inhibition of the Hedgehog pathway may be a useful approach for treating rhabdomyosarcoma patients.
A highly complex network of coinhibitory and costimulatory receptors regulates the outcome of virus-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses. Here, we report on the expression patterns of multiple inhibitory receptors on HIV-specific, cytomegalovirus-specific, and bulk CD8(+) T-cell memory populations. In contrast to cytomegalovirus-specific CD8(+) T cells, the majority of HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells exhibited an immature phenotype and expressed Programmed Death-1, CD160 and 2B4 but not lymphocyte activation gene-3. Notably, before antiretroviral therapy, simultaneous expression of these negative regulators correlated strongly with both HIV load and impaired cytokine production. Suppression of HIV replication by antiretroviral therapy was associated with reduced surface expression of inhibitory molecules on HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells. Furthermore, in vitro manipulation of Programmed Death-1 and 2B4 inhibitory pathways increased the proliferative capacity of HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells. Thus, multiple coinhibitory receptors can affect the development of HIV-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses and, by extension, represent potential targets for new immune-based interventions in HIV-infected persons.
To reveal the factors that determine the natural course of subluxation of occipital-cervical lesions in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The atlanto-axial region is one of the most common locations for lesions in RA. Some cases progress from reducible atlanto-axial subluxation (AAS) to irreducible vertical migration, while others continue to exhibit reducible AAS. No study has revealed the factors that determine the natural course of subluxation. We focus on the odontoid as a key structure of the progression of occipito-cervical lesions and investigated this region in patients with RA using reconstructive computed tomography (CT) images, and analyzed factors in association with CT findings.
The rotational spectra of NiCO and PdCO in the ground and ?(2) excited vibrational states were observed by employing a source-modulated microwave spectrometer. The NiCO and PdCO molecules were generated in a free space cell by the sputtering reaction of nickel and palladium sheets, respectively, lining the inner surface of a stainless steel cathode with a dc glow plasma of CO and Ar. The molecular constants of NiCO and PdCO were determined by least-squares analysis. By force field analysis for the molecular constants of not only NiCO and PdCO but also of PtCO as previously reported, the harmonic force constants were determined for these three group 10 metal monocarbonyls. The vibrational wavenumbers derived for the lower M-C stretching vibrations were in good agreement with those obtained from the IR spectra in noble gas matrices and those predicted by several quantum chemical calculations published in the past. The bending vibrational wavenumbers derived by the force field analysis were also consistent with most quantum chemical calculations previously reported, but showed systematic discrepancies from the matrix IR values by about 40 cm(-1), even after reassignment (?(2) band ? 2?(2) band) of the matrix IR spectra of PdCO and PtCO.
In skeletal muscle differentiation, muscle-specific genes are regulated by two groups of transcription factors, the MyoD and MEF2 families, which work together to drive the differentiation process. Here, we show that ERK5 regulates muscle cell fusion through Klf transcription factors. The inhibition of ERK5 activity suppresses muscle cell fusion with minimal effects on the expression of MyoD, MEF2, and their target genes. Promoter analysis coupled to microarray assay reveals that Klf-binding motifs are highly enriched in the promoter regions of ERK5-dependent upregulated genes. Remarkably, Klf2 and Klf4 expression are also upregulated during differentiation in an ERK5-dependent manner, and knockdown of Klf2 or Klf4 specifically suppresses muscle cell fusion. Moreover, we show that Sp1 transcription factor links ERK5 to Klf2/4, and that nephronectin, a Klf transcriptional target, is involved in muscle cell fusion. Therefore, an ERK5/Sp1/Klf module plays a key role in the fusion process during skeletal muscle differentiation.
The Hedgehog pathway functions as an organizer in embryonic development. Aberrant activation of the Hedgehog pathway has been reported in various types of malignant tumours. The GLI2 transcription factor is a key mediator of Hedgehog pathway but its contribution to neoplasia is poorly understood. To establish the role of GLI2 in osteosarcoma, we examined its expression by real-time PCR using biopsy tissues. To examine the function of GLI2, we evaluated the growth of osteosarcoma cells and their cell cycle after GLI2 knockdown. To study the effect of GLI2 activation, we examined mesenchymal stem cell growth and the cell cycle after forced expression of GLI2. We found that GLI2 was aberrantly over-expressed in human osteosarcoma biopsy specimens. GLI2 knockdown by RNA interferences prevented osteosarcoma growth and anchorage-independent growth. Knockdown of GLI2 promoted the arrest of osteosarcoma cells in G(1) phase and was accompanied by reduced protein expression of the cell cycle accelerators cyclin D1, SKP2 and phosphorylated Rb. On the other hand, knockdown of GLI2 increased the expression of p21(cip1) . In addition, over-expression of GLI2 promoted mesenchymal stem cell proliferation and accelerated their cell cycle progression. Finally, evaluation of mouse xenograft models showed that GLI2 knockdown inhibited the growth of osteosarcoma in nude mice. Our findings suggest that inhibition of GLI2 may represent an effective therapeutic approach for patients with osteosarcoma.
It is well known that calcium ions (Ca(2+)) induce keratinocyte differentiation. Ca(2+) distributes to form a vertical gradient that peaks at the stratum granulosum. It is thought that the stratum corneum (SC) forms the Ca(2+) gradient since it is considered the only permeability barrier in the skin. However, the epidermal tight junction (TJ) in the granulosum has recently been suggested to restrict molecular movement to assist the SC as a secondary barrier. The objective of this study was to clarify the contribution of the TJ to Ca(2+) gradient and epidermal differentiation in reconstructed human epidermis. When the epidermal TJ barrier was disrupted by sodium caprate treatment, Ca(2+) flux increased and the gradient changed in ion-capture cytochemistry images. Alterations of ultrastructures and proliferation/differentiation markers revealed that both hyperproliferation and precocious differentiation occurred regionally in the epidermis. These results suggest that the TJ plays a crucial role in maintaining epidermal homeostasis by controlling the Ca(2+) gradient.
The differentiation of CD8+ T lymphocytes following priming of naïve cells is central in the establishment of the adaptive immune response. Yet, the molecular events underlying this process are not fully understood. MicroRNAs have been recently shown to play a key role in the regulation of haematopoiesis in mouse, but their implication in peripheral lymphocyte differentiation in humans remains largely unknown.
The cellular and molecular mechanisms of tumour response following chemotherapy are largely unknown. We found that low dose anti-tumour agents up-regulate early growth response 1 (EGR1) expression. EGR1 is a member of the immediate-early gene group of transcription factors which modulate transcription of multiple genes involved in cell proliferation, differentiation, and development. It has been reported that EGR1 act as either tumour promoting factor or suppressor. We therefore examined the expression and function of EGR1 in osteosarcoma.
A balance between cell survival and apoptosis is essential for animal development. Although proper development involves multiple interactions between germ layers, little is known about the intercellular and intertissue signaling pathways that promote cell survival in neighboring or distant germ layers. We found that serum- and glucocorticoid-inducible kinase 1 (SGK1) promoted ectodermal cell survival during early Xenopus embryogenesis through a non-cell-autonomous mechanism. Dorsal depletion of SGK1 in Xenopus embryos resulted in shortened axes and reduced head structures with defective eyes, and ventral depletion led to defective tail morphologies. Although the gene encoding SGK1 was mainly expressed in the endoderm and dorsal mesoderm, knockdown of SGK1 caused excessive apoptosis in the ectoderm. SGK1-depleted ectodermal explants showed little or no apoptosis, suggesting non-cell-autonomous effects of SGK1 on ectodermal cells. Microarray analysis revealed that SGK1 knockdown increased the expression of genes encoding FADD (Fas-associated death domain protein) and caspase-10, components of the death-inducing signaling complex (DISC). Inhibition of DISC function suppressed excessive apoptosis in SGK1-knockdown embryos. SGK1 acted through the transcription factor nuclear factor ?B (NF-?B) to stimulate production of bone morphogenetic protein 7 (BMP7), and overexpression of BMP7 in SGK1-knockdown embryos reduced the abundance of DISC components. We show that phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) functioned upstream of SGK1, thus revealing an endodermal and mesodermal pathway from PI3K to SGK1 to NF-?B that produces BMP7, which promotes ectodermal survival by decreasing DISC function.
Osteoid osteoma of the spine is a relatively rare bone-forming tumor. Pain that is worse at night and relieved by aspirin and muscle contracture are the most characteristic symptoms of spinal osteoid osteoma. Although radicular pain occasionally occurs in spinal osteoid osteoma, spinal cord and nerve root compression is absent in most cases. Although radicular pain appears to be associated with tumorous inflammation, there have been no presentations of histological findings of inflammation around the nerve root. We present here two rare cases of spinal osteoid osteoma causing radiculopathy and the first histological evidence of tumorous inflammation as a cause of radiculopathy in osteoid osteoma near the intervertebral foramen.
We report a case of a 69-year-old man with dropped head syndrome associated with isolated neck extensor myopathy (INEM). Over a period of 2 years, he exhibited progressive inability to lift his chin off his chest, resulting in the dropped head position that impaired his activities of daily living. He had a disturbed gait with severe imbalance of spinal alignment. Computed tomography revealed osseous contracture of cervical vertebral bodies in flexed position. Anterior combined posterior reconstruction surgery yielded a successful outcome in his activities of daily living, including his walking balance of spinal alignment. Pathologic study confirmed myogenic atrophy in the cervical extensor muscles. We suggest that consideration for surgical management should be given to dropped head syndrome especially due to INEM.
The actin cytoskeleton undergoes rapid changes in its architecture during mitosis. Here, we demonstrate novel actin assembly dynamics in M phase. An amorphous cluster of actin filaments appears during prometaphase, revolves horizontally along the cell cortex at a constant angular speed, and fuses into the contractile ring after three to four revolutions. Cdk1 activity is required for the formation of this mitotic actin cluster and its revolving movement. Rapid turnover of actin in the filaments takes place everywhere in the cluster and is also required for its cluster rotation during mitosis. Knockdown of Arp3, a component of the actin filament-nucleating Arp2/3 complex, inhibits the formation of the mitotic actin cluster without affecting other actin structures. These results identify Arp2/3 complex as a key factor in the generation of the dynamic actin cluster during mitosis.
Tethered cord syndrome with spinal lipoma is the most common form of occult spinal dysraphism. For the symptomatic patients, surgical treatment is recommended; however, there are many patients who have not been encouraged to seek medical attention until adulthood, since their symptoms are not severe enough to interfere with their daily activities. We performed pedicle subtraction osteotomy (PSO) to achieve indirect untethering and neural decompression in two senior patients with tethered cord syndrome, who showed deteriorating neurological condition due to coexisting lumbar canal stenosis. Here we report two patients (aged 56 and 60 years) who underwent PSO of L3 or L4. The pain disappeared and the bladder dysfunction recovered significantly after surgery. Complete bone union and untethering were achieved in both patients. PSO is an alternative surgical technique for senior patients with tethered cord syndrome caused by lumbosacral spinal lipoma, when the syndrome occurs along with lumbar canal stenosis.
Spinal subependymomas, which have a relatively benign nature, are very rare tumors. It is difficult to distinguish spinal subependymomas from other intramedullary spinal tumors based on neuroradiological findings. A case of cervical intramedullary subependymoma in a 63-year-old female is reported. The diffused enlargement of the spinal cord at C2 level involved the lesion with isointensity on a T1-weighted MRI and relatively high intensity on a T2-weighted MRI. Enhancement in the small part of the tumor was observed on a T1-weighted MRI with gadolinium administration. The tumor occupied the left side of the spinal cord, and was totally removed through a laminoplasty of C2. Immunohistochemistry was useful for pathological diagnosis. The clinical feature of this patient is described with the review of literatures.
Although the diagnosis of chondrosarcoma, especially the distinction between enchondroma and low-grade chondrosarcoma or low-grade chondrosarcoma and high-grade chondrosarcoma, is pathologically difficult, differential diagnosis is very important because the treatment strategies for these diseases are completely different. The grading system is crucial in predicting biologic behavior and prognosis, however, exact pathological grading is difficult using only routine examinations because the criteria of the grading system are not necessarily definitive. Growth arrest and DNA damage-inducible protein 45? (GADD45?) is an essential molecule for chondrocytes during terminal differentiation. In the present study, we investigated the immunohistochemical expression of GADD45? in enchondroma, and chondrosarcoma of histological grades I, II, and III, to clarify the diagnostic significance of GADD45? in pathological grading of chondrosarcoma.
A thorough understanding of the circadian clock requires qualitative evaluation of circadian clock gene expression. Thus far, no simple and effective method for detecting human clock gene expression has become available. This limitation has greatly hampered our understanding of human circadian rhythm. Here we report a convenient, reliable, and less invasive method for detecting human clock gene expression using biopsy samples of hair follicle cells from the head or chin. We show that the circadian phase of clock gene expression in hair follicle cells accurately reflects that of individual behavioral rhythms, demonstrating that this strategy is appropriate for evaluating the human peripheral circadian clock. Furthermore, using this method, we indicate that rotating shift workers suffer from a serious time lag between circadian gene expression rhythms and lifestyle. Qualitative evaluation of clock gene expression in hair follicle cells, therefore, may be an effective approach for studying the human circadian clock in the clinical setting.
Intradural neurenteric cysts are rare congenital lesions and arise from incomplete separation of the developing notochord and foregut in the embryo. Neurenteric cysts are often seen in conjunction with other forms of occult spinal dysraphism. The cases of a 48-year-old male with pain in the right shoulder and numbness in both hands and a 7-year-old girl with subacute muscle weakness of the lower extremities are presented. Both patients underwent surgery. One lesion was completely excised, while the other could be only partially removed because of negative monitoring potential during the operation. Histological examination, showing pseudostratified ciliated columnar epithelium, confirmed the diagnosis of neurenteric cyst. The symptoms in both patients nearly disappeared after surgery. Recurrence of cyst was observed in the girl, though without neurological symptoms. In conclusion, two cases of intradural extramedullary cysts are reported. Clinical presentations, intraoperative findings, and histological features are discussed with a review of the literature.
The thermal stability of a self-assembled micelle was remarkably enhanced by a topology effect. Linear poly(butyl acrylate)-block-poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(butyl acrylate) (1) and the cyclized product, poly(butyl acrylate)-block-poly(ethylene oxide) (2), were self-assembled to form flower-like micelles. By means of viscometry, the critical micelle concentrations were determined to be 0.13 and 0.14 mg/mL for 1 and 2, respectively. Dynamic light scattering, atomic force microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy studies revealed that both micelles are spherical and approximately 20 nm in diameter. Despite no distinctive change in the chemical composition or structure of the micelle, we found that the cloud point (T(c)) was elevated by more than 40 degrees C through the linear-to-cyclic topological conversion of the polymer amphiphile. Furthermore, the T(c) was tuned by coassembly of 1 and 2.
An alkyne-azide addition, i.e., click, reaction in conjunction with an electrostatic self-assembly and covalent fixation (ESA-CF) process has been demonstrated to effectively construct a variety of unprecedented multicyclic polymer topologies. A series of single cyclic poly(tetrahydrofuran), poly(THF), precursors having an alkyne group (Ia), an azide group (Ib), two alkyne groups at the opposite positions (Ic), and an alkyne group and an azide group at the opposite positions (Id) have been prepared by the ESA-CF process. Moreover, a bicyclic 8-shaped precursor having two alkyne groups at the opposite positions (Ie) was synthesized. The subsequent click reaction of Ia with linear (IIa) and three-armed star (IIb) telechelic precursors having azide groups has been performed to construct bridged-type two-way (IIIa) and three-way (IIIb) paddle-shaped polymer topologies, respectively. Likewise, spiro-type tandem tricyclic (IVa) and tetracyclic (IVb) topologies resulted from Ib/Ic and Ib/Ie, respectively. Furthermore, three types of multicyclic topologies that are composed of repeating ring (Va), alternating ring/linear (Vb), and alternating ring/star (Vc) units have been synthesized from Id, Ic/IIa, and Ic/IIb, respectively.
Polarized secretion of lamellar granules (LGs) delivers various lipids, proteases, and protease inhibitors into the stratum corneum (SC) of the epithelium. Disruption of LGs is associated with severe cutaneous diseases, but the mechanism of their polarized secretion is not known. On the other hand, recent study shows epidermal tight junctions (TJs) localize in stratum granulosum (SG), and TJs are involved in polarized molecule secretion. Thus, we hypothesized epidermal TJs relate to polarized LGs secretion.
Despite many efforts to develop AIDS vaccines eliciting virus-specific T-cell responses, whether induction of these memory T cells by vaccination before human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) exposure can actually contribute to effective T-cell responses postinfection remains unclear. In particular, induction of HIV-specific memory CD4(+) T cells may increase the target cell pool for HIV infection because the virus preferentially infects HIV-specific CD4(+) T cells. However, virus-specific CD4(+) helper T-cell responses are thought to be important for functional CD8(+) cytotoxic-T-lymphocyte (CTL) induction in HIV infection, and it has remained unknown whether HIV-specific memory CD8(+) T cells induced by vaccination without HIV-specific CD4(+) T-cell help can exert effective responses after virus exposure. Here we show the impact of CD8(+) T-cell memory induction without virus-specific CD4(+) T-cell help on the control of a simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) challenge in rhesus macaques. We developed a prophylactic vaccine by using a Sendai virus (SeV) vector expressing a single SIV Gag(241-249) CTL epitope fused with enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP). Vaccination resulted in induction of SeV-EGFP-specific CD4(+) T-cell and Gag(241-249)-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses. After a SIV challenge, the vaccinees showed dominant Gag(241-249)-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses with higher effector memory frequencies in the acute phase and exhibited significantly reduced viral loads. These results demonstrate that virus-specific memory CD8(+) T cells induced by vaccination without virus-specific CD4(+) T-cell help could indeed facilitate SIV control after virus exposure, indicating the benefit of prophylactic vaccination eliciting virus-specific CTL memory with non-virus-specific CD4(+) T-cell responses for HIV control.
Dendritic cells (DCs) are professional antigen-presenting cells that possess a unique capacity to cross-present exogenous antigens efficiently to CD8(+) T cells. We previously demonstrated that monocyte-derived DCs (MDDCs) pulsed with yeast-derived HIV-1 Gag virus-like particles (VLPs) were able to activate Gag-specific CD8(+) T cells from HIV-1-infected individuals. Yeast VLPs are abundantly mannosylated (high-mannose type: HmVLPs) and are highly immunogenic. Because lectin receptors are shown to negatively regulate Th1 responses, we investigated the relationship between VLP mannosylation level and MDDC cross-presentation activity. Poorly mannosylated VLPs (low-mannose type: LmVLPs) were prepared using a yeast mnn9 mutant strain that lacks a core mannosylation enzyme. We found that MDDCs pulsed with LmVLPs activated Gag-specific T cells more strongly than those pulsed with HmVLPs. However, MDDCs showed similar antigen uptake and intracellular transport of both types of VLPs. Interestingly, LmVLPs induced IL-12 production slightly more than HmVLPs (yet statistically significant). Furthermore, the level of LPS-induced IL-10 production was enhanced by pulsing with HmVLPs, but not with LmVLPs. These results indicate that lectin receptors recognizing mannose may influence the Th1/Th2 balance of the immune response, resulting in reduced efficiency of CD8(+) T cell activation by a heavily mannosylated antigen presented by DCs.
In response to viral infection, the innate immune system recognizes viral nucleic acids and then induces production of proinflammatory cytokines and type I interferons (IFNs). Toll-like receptor 7 (TLR7) and TLR9 detect viral RNA and DNA, respectively, in endosomal compartments, leading to the activation of nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kappaB) and IFN regulatory factors (IRFs) in plasmacytoid dendritic cells. During such TLR signaling, TNF receptor-associated factor 6 (TRAF6) is essential for the activation of NF-kappaB and the production of type I IFN. In contrast, RIG-like helicases (RLHs), cytosolic RNA sensors, are indispensable for antiviral responses in conventional dendritic cells, macrophages, and fibroblasts. However, the contribution of TRAF6 to the detection of cytosolic viral nucleic acids has been controversial, and the involvement of TRAF6 in IRF activation has not been adequately addressed.
Efficient couplings using equimolar quantities of each coupling partner and multiple C-H bond arylation reactions are achieved with an Ir-based catalytic system for the C-H bond arylation of electron-rich heteroarenes with iodoarenes to construct extended pi-systems. The dramatic ligand effect on reaction efficiency leads to the discovery that Crabtrees catalyst (see scheme) is the optimal catalyst precursor.
Carcinoembryonic antigen-related cell adhesion molecule 1 (CEACAM1) regulates intestinal immunological homeostasis. However, precise expression patterns of CEACAM1 isoforms remain poorly understood in the intestinal epithelia. Focusing on the small intestinal epithelium of BALB/c mice, we identified three novel splice variants encoding CEACAM1(a)-2, -2C1, and -4C1 by RT-PCR. CEACAM1(a)-2, -2C1, and -4C1 demonstrated secretory properties by transfection experiments in vitro. Among them, CEACAM1(a)-4C1 was the major secreted isoform in vivo due to the soluble/secreted CEACAM1(a) with a frameshift sequence in the C-terminus, specific for CEACAM1(a)-2C1 and -4C1. CEACAM1(a)-4C1 was capable of binding murine hepatitis virus (MHV) and was detected at approximately 120kDa in the small intestinal secretions. Neutralizing effects of the soluble CEACAM1(a) on MHV infectivity in vitro were demonstrated by using recombinant CEACAM1(a)-4C1. Our data suggest an intrinsic mechanism operated by free CEACAM1 for surveillance of pathogens and maintenance of homeostasis in the intestine.
Dietary restriction is the most effective and reproducible intervention to extend lifespan in divergent species. In mammals, two regimens of dietary restriction, intermittent fasting (IF) and chronic caloric restriction, have proven to extend lifespan and reduce the incidence of age-related disorders. An important characteristic of IF is that it can increase lifespan even when there is little or no overall decrease in calorie intake. The molecular mechanisms underlying IF-induced longevity, however, remain largely unknown. Here we establish an IF regimen that effectively extends the lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans, and show that the low molecular weight GTPase RHEB-1 has a dual role in lifespan regulation; RHEB-1 is required for the IF-induced longevity, whereas inhibition of RHEB-1 mimics the caloric-restriction effects. RHEB-1 exerts its effects in part by the insulin/insulin growth factor (IGF)-like signalling effector DAF-16 in IF. Our analyses demonstrate that most fasting-induced upregulated genes require RHEB-1 function for their induction, and that RHEB-1 and TOR signalling are required for the fasting-induced downregulation of an insulin-like peptide, INS-7. These findings identify the essential role of signalling by RHEB-1 in IF-induced longevity and gene expression changes, and suggest a molecular link between the IF-induced longevity and the insulin/IGF-like signalling pathway.
Rapid depletion of memory CD4(+) T cells and delayed induction of neutralizing antibody (NAb) responses are characteristics of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) infections. Although it was speculated that postinfection NAb induction could have only a limited suppressive effect on primary HIV replication, a recent study has shown that a single passive NAb immunization of rhesus macaques 1 week after SIV challenge can result in reduction of viral loads at the set point, indicating a possible contribution of postinfection NAb responses to virus control. However, the mechanism accounting for this NAb-triggered SIV control has remained unclear. Here, we report rapid induction of virus-specific polyfunctional T-cell responses after the passive NAb immunization postinfection. Analysis of SIV Gag-specific responses of gamma interferon, tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin-2, macrophage inflammatory protein 1beta, and CD107a revealed that the polyfunctionality of Gag-specific CD4(+) T cells, as defined by the multiplicity of these responses, was markedly elevated in the acute phase in NAb-immunized animals. In the chronic phase, despite the absence of detectable NAbs, virus control was maintained, accompanied by polyfunctional Gag-specific T-cell responses. These results implicate virus-specific polyfunctional CD4(+) T-cell responses in this NAb-triggered virus control, suggesting possible synergism between NAbs and T cells for control of HIV/SIV replication.
The gold(I)-catalyzed cycloisomerization of 1,5-enynes and 1,4-allylallenes to tetracyclododecane and tetracyclotridecane derivatives, respectively, is reported. Complexation of the cationic gold(I) complex to either the alkyne or allene moiety induces an intramolecular addition of the alkene, leading to a gold(I)-stabilized carbenoid intermediate. This intermediate undergoes a formal sp(3) C-H insertion to generate the tetracyclic adduct. A series of deuterium labeling experiments showed that the C-H functionalization step proceeds with an inverse kinetic isotope effect.
Tight junctions (TJs) restrict paracellular flux of water and solutes in epithelia and endothelia. In epidermis, the physiological role of TJs is not fully understood. In this study, sodium caprate (C10), which dilates intestinal TJs, was applied to cultured human epidermal keratinocytes and reconstructed human epidermis to investigate the effects of C10 on epidermal TJs. C10 treatment decreased transepithelial electrical resistance and increased paracellular permeability, although Western blots showed that the expression of TJ-related transmembrane proteins was not decreased. The effects of C10 were reversible. Immunofluorescence microscopy and immuno-replica electron microscopy showed that the localization of TJ strands were disintegrated, concomitant with the dispersion and/or disappearance of TJ-related molecules from the cell surface. These findings suggest that C10 impairs barrier function by physically disrupting TJ conformation in the epidermis. Furthermore, these results also show that proper localization of the molecules on the cellular membrane is important for TJ barrier function.
Dendritic cells (DCs) are essential antigen-presenting cells for the induction of T cell immunity against HIV. On the other hand, due to the susceptibility of DCs to HIV infection, virus replication is strongly enhanced in DC-T cell interaction via an immunological synapse formed during the antigen presentation process. When HIV-1 is isolated from individuals newly infected with the mixture of R5 and X4 variants, R5 is predominant, irrespective of the route of infection. Because the early massive HIV-1 replication occurs in activated T cells and such T-cell activation is induced by antigen presentation, we postulated that the selective expansion of R5 may largely occur at the level of DC-T cell interaction. Thus, the immunological synapse serves as an infectious synapse through which the virus can be disseminated in vivo. We used fluorescent recombinant X4 and R5 HIV-1 consisting of a common HIV-1 genome structure with distinct envelopes, which allowed us to discriminate the HIV-1 transmitted from DCs infected with the two virus mixtures to antigen-specific CD4(+) T cells by flow cytometry. We clearly show that the selective expansion of R5 over X4 HIV-1 did occur, which was determined at an early entry step by the activation status of the CD4(+) T cells receiving virus from DCs, but not by virus entry efficiency or productivity in DCs. Our results imply a promising strategy for the efficient control of HIV infection.
Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs), including embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells, are potentially useful in regenerative therapies for heart disease. For medical applications, clinical-grade cardiac cells must be produced from hPSCs in a defined, cost-effective manner. Cell-based screening led to the discovery of KY02111, a small molecule that promotes differentiation of hPSCs to cardiomyocytes. Although the direct target of KY02111 remains unknown, results of the present study suggest that KY02111 promotes differentiation by inhibiting WNT signaling in hPSCs but in a manner that is distinct from that of previously studied WNT inhibitors. Combined use of KY02111 and WNT signaling modulators produced robust cardiac differentiation of hPSCs in a xeno-free, defined medium, devoid of serum and any kind of recombinant cytokines and hormones, such as BMP4, Activin A, or insulin. The methodology has potential as a means for the practical production of human cardiomyocytes for regeneration therapies.
Formation of nanoscale helium (He) bubbles in reduced activation ferritic/martensitic steels may lead to degradation of mechanical properties of materials. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) has commonly been used to image the Fresnel contrast of He bubbles, using an underfocus of 0.5-1 µm. This paper presents our study of multislice simulation of the size correlation between imaged Fresnel rings and the actual He bubbles. It was found that for bubbles equal to or >3 nm in diameter, the imaged bubble size, represented by its inner diameter of the first dark Fresnel ring (D(in)) in underfocused imaging conditions, increases with increasing electron-beam incoherency, but decreases with increasing underfocus. The electron-beam accelerating voltage, bubble size, bubble position and TEM sample thickness were found to have no significant influence on the deviation of D(in) from the actual bubble size (D(0)). However, for bubbles equal to or <2 nm, D(in)/D(0) increases dramatically with increasing underfocus when it is above a threshold limit (e.g. ?f = -1 µm for a 2-nm bubble). The results of this study also suggested that He bubbles can be differentiated from argon (Ar) bubbles by contrast differences.
CD4 T follicular helper (TFH) cells interact with and stimulate the generation of antigen-specific B cells. TFH cell interaction with B cells correlates with production of SIV-specific immunoglobulins. However, the fate of TFH cells and their participation in SIV-induced antibody production is not well understood. We investigated the phenotype, function, location, and molecular signature of TFH cells in rhesus macaques. Similar to their human counterparts, TFH cells in rhesus macaques represented a heterogeneous population with respect to cytokine function. In a highly differentiated subpopulation of TFH cells, characterized by CD150lo expression, production of Th1 cytokines was compromised while IL-4 production was augmented, and cells exhibited decreased survival, cycling, and trafficking capacity. TFH cells exhibited a distinct gene profile that was markedly altered by SIV infection. TFH cells were infected by SIV; yet, in some animals, these cells actually accumulated during chronic SIV infection. Generalized immune activation and increased IL-6 production helped drive TFH differentiation during SIV infection. Accumulation of TFH cells was associated with increased frequency of activated germinal center B cells and SIV-specific antibodies. Therefore, chronic SIV does not disturb the ability of TFH cells to help B cell maturation and production of SIV-specific immunoglobulins.
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