To elucidate the role of electrical signaling in the phloem of maize the tips of attached leaves were stimulated by chilling and wounding. Two different signals were detected in the phloem at the middle of the leaf using the aphid stylet technique: (1) action potentials (AP) arose in the phloem after chilling; and (2) variation potentials (VPs) were evoked after wounding the leaf tip. Combined electric potential and gas exchange measurements showed that while the wound-induced VP moved rapidly towards the middle of the leaf to induce a reduction in both the net-CO2 uptake rate and the stomatal conductance, there was no response in the gas exchange to the cold-induced AP. To determine if electrical signaling had any impact on assimilate transport the middle of the leaf was exposed to (14)CO2. Autoradiography of labeled assimilates provided evidence that phloem and intercellular transport of assimilates from mesophyll to bundle sheath cells was strongly reduced while the cold-induced AP moved through. In contrast, wound-induced VP did not inhibit assimilate translocation but did reduce the amount of the labeled assimilate in phloem and bundle sheath cells. Biochemical analysis revealed that callose content increased significantly in chilled leaves while starch increased in chilled but decreased in wounded leaves. The results led to the conclusion that different stimulation types incite characteristic phloem-transmitted electrical signals, each with a specific influence on gas exchange and assimilate transport.
Koromiko [Hebe salicifolia G. Forst. (Pennell)] is a woody angiosperm native to New Zealand and Chile. Hebe spp. belong to the otherwise herbaceous family Plantaginaceae in the order Lamiales. Reaction wood exerting expansional forces was found on the lower side of leaning H. salicifolia stems. Such reaction wood is atypical for angiosperms, which commonly form contracting reaction wood on the upper side of leaning stems. Reaction wood typical for angiosperms is formed by species in other families in the order Lamiales. This suggests that the form of reaction wood is specific to the family level. Functionally the reaction wood of H. salicifolia is similar to that found in gymnosperms, which both act by pushing. However, their chemical, anatomical and physical characteristics are different. Typical features of reaction wood present in gymnosperms such as high density, thick-walled rounded cells and the presence of (1 ? 4)-?-galactan in the secondary cell wall layer are absent in H. salicifolia reaction wood. Reaction wood of H. salicifolia varies from normal wood in having a higher microfibril angle, which is likely to determine the direction of generated maturation stresses.
Erythropoietin (Epo) administration has been reported to have tumor-promoting effects in anemic cancer patients. We investigated the prognostic impact of endogenous Epo in patients with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC).
Cell surface receptors convert extracellular cues into receptor activation, thereby triggering intracellular signaling networks and controlling cellular decisions. A major unresolved issue is the identification of receptor properties that critically determine processing of ligand-encoded information. We show by mathematical modeling of quantitative data and experimental validation that rapid ligand depletion and replenishment of the cell surface receptor are characteristic features of the erythropoietin (Epo) receptor (EpoR). The amount of Epo-EpoR complexes and EpoR activation integrated over time corresponds linearly to ligand input; this process is carried out over a broad range of ligand concentrations. This relation depends solely on EpoR turnover independent of ligand binding, which suggests an essential role of large intracellular receptor pools. These receptor properties enable the system to cope with basal and acute demand in the hematopoietic system.
Pancreatic cancer (PCA) is an aggressive tumor that associates with high mortality rates. Majority of PCA patients are diagnosed usually at late tumor stages when the therapeutic options are limited. MicroRNAs (miRNA) are involved in tumor development and are commonly dysregulated in PCA. As a proof-of-principle study, we aimed to evaluate the potential of fecal miRNAs as biomarkers for pancreatic cancer.
Mathematical models of dynamical systems facilitate the computation of characteristic properties that are not accessible experimentally. In cell biology, two main properties of interest are (1) the time-period a protein is accessible to other molecules in a certain state - its half-life - and (2) the time it spends when passing through a subsystem - its transit-time. We discuss two approaches to quantify the half-life, present the novel method of in silico labeling, and introduce the label half-life and label transit-time. The developed method has been motivated by laboratory tracer experiments. To investigate the kinetic properties and behavior of a substance of interest, we computationally label this species in order to track it throughout its life cycle. The corresponding mathematical model is extended by an additional set of reactions for the labeled species, avoiding any double-counting within closed circuits, correcting for the influences of upstream fluxes, and taking into account combinatorial multiplicity for complexes or reactions with several reactants or products. A profile likelihood approach is used to estimate confidence intervals on the label half-life and transit-time.
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