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Sample records for activate membrane fusion

  1. Membrane fusion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bendix, Pól Martin

    2015-01-01

    At Stanford University, Boxer lab, I worked on membrane fusion of small unilamellar lipid vesicles to flat membranes tethered to glass surfaces. This geometry closely resembles biological systems in which liposomes fuse to plasma membranes. The fusion mechanism was studied using DNA zippering...... between complementary strands linked to the two apposing membranes closely mimicking the zippering mechanism of SNARE fusion complexes....

  2. Influenza Virus-Mediated Membrane Fusion: Determinants of Hemagglutinin Fusogenic Activity and Experimental Approaches for Assessing Virus Fusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susan Daniel

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Hemagglutinin (HA is the viral protein that facilitates the entry of influenza viruses into host cells. This protein controls two critical aspects of entry: virus binding and membrane fusion. In order for HA to carry out these functions, it must first undergo a priming step, proteolytic cleavage, which renders it fusion competent. Membrane fusion commences from inside the endosome after a drop in lumenal pH and an ensuing conformational change in HA that leads to the hemifusion of the outer membrane leaflets of the virus and endosome, the formation of a stalk between them, followed by pore formation. Thus, the fusion machinery is an excellent target for antiviral compounds, especially those that target the conserved stem region of the protein. However, traditional ensemble fusion assays provide a somewhat limited ability to directly quantify fusion partly due to the inherent averaging of individual fusion events resulting from experimental constraints. Inspired by the gains achieved by single molecule experiments and analysis of stochastic events, recently-developed individual virion imaging techniques and analysis of single fusion events has provided critical information about individual virion behavior, discriminated intermediate fusion steps within a single virion, and allowed the study of the overall population dynamics without the loss of discrete, individual information. In this article, we first start by reviewing the determinants of HA fusogenic activity and the viral entry process, highlight some open questions, and then describe the experimental approaches for assaying fusion that will be useful in developing the most effective therapies in the future.

  3. Membrane fusion during poxvirus entry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moss, Bernard

    2016-12-01

    Poxviruses comprise a large family of enveloped DNA viruses that infect vertebrates and invertebrates. Poxviruses, unlike most DNA viruses, replicate in the cytoplasm and encode enzymes and other proteins that enable entry, gene expression, genome replication, virion assembly and resistance to host defenses. Entry of vaccinia virus, the prototype member of the family, can occur at the plasma membrane or following endocytosis. Whereas many viruses encode one or two proteins for attachment and membrane fusion, vaccinia virus encodes four proteins for attachment and eleven more for membrane fusion and core entry. The entry-fusion proteins are conserved in all poxviruses and form a complex, known as the Entry Fusion Complex (EFC), which is embedded in the membrane of the mature virion. An additional membrane that encloses the mature virion and is discarded prior to entry is present on an extracellular form of the virus. The EFC is held together by multiple interactions that depend on nine of the eleven proteins. The entry process can be divided into attachment, hemifusion and core entry. All eleven EFC proteins are required for core entry and at least eight for hemifusion. To mediate fusion the virus particle is activated by low pH, which removes one or more fusion repressors that interact with EFC components. Additional EFC-interacting fusion repressors insert into cell membranes and prevent secondary infection. The absence of detailed structural information, except for two attachment proteins and one EFC protein, is delaying efforts to determine the fusion mechanism.

  4. Viral membrane fusion

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    Harrison, Stephen C., E-mail: harrison@crystal.harvard.edu

    2015-05-15

    Membrane fusion is an essential step when enveloped viruses enter cells. Lipid bilayer fusion requires catalysis to overcome a high kinetic barrier; viral fusion proteins are the agents that fulfill this catalytic function. Despite a variety of molecular architectures, these proteins facilitate fusion by essentially the same generic mechanism. Stimulated by a signal associated with arrival at the cell to be infected (e.g., receptor or co-receptor binding, proton binding in an endosome), they undergo a series of conformational changes. A hydrophobic segment (a “fusion loop” or “fusion peptide”) engages the target-cell membrane and collapse of the bridging intermediate thus formed draws the two membranes (virus and cell) together. We know of three structural classes for viral fusion proteins. Structures for both pre- and postfusion conformations of illustrate the beginning and end points of a process that can be probed by single-virion measurements of fusion kinetics. - Highlights: • Viral fusion proteins overcome the high energy barrier to lipid bilayer merger. • Different molecular structures but the same catalytic mechanism. • Review describes properties of three known fusion-protein structural classes. • Single-virion fusion experiments elucidate mechanism.

  5. Fusion of biological membranes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    K Katsov; M Müller; M Schick

    2005-06-01

    The process of membrane fusion has been examined by Monte Carlo simulation, and is found to be very different than the conventional picture. The differences in mechanism lead to several predictions, in particular that fusion is accompanied by transient leakage. This prediction has recently been verified. Self-consistent field theory is applied to examine the free energy barriers in the different scenarios.

  6. Mechanisms of influenza viral membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blijleven, Jelle S; Boonstra, Sander; Onck, Patrick R; van der Giessen, Erik; van Oijen, Antoine M

    2016-12-01

    Influenza viral particles are enveloped by a lipid bilayer. A major step in infection is fusion of the viral and host cellular membranes, a process with large kinetic barriers. Influenza membrane fusion is catalyzed by hemagglutinin (HA), a class I viral fusion protein activated by low pH. The exact nature of the HA conformational changes that deliver the energy required for fusion remains poorly understood. This review summarizes our current knowledge of HA structure and dynamics, describes recent single-particle experiments and modeling studies, and discusses their role in understanding how multiple HAs mediate fusion. These approaches provide a mechanistic picture in which HAs independently and stochastically insert into the target membrane, forming a cluster of HAs that is collectively able to overcome the barrier to membrane fusion. The new experimental and modeling approaches described in this review hold promise for a more complete understanding of other viral fusion systems and the protein systems responsible for cellular fusion.

  7. Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus GP64 protein: Analysis of domain I and V amino acid interactions and membrane fusion activity

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    Yu, Qianlong [State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology for Arid Areas, Key Laboratory of Northwest Loess Plateau Crop Pest Management of Ministry of Agriculture, College of Plant Protection, Northwest A& F University, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100 (China); Blissard, Gary W. [Boyce Thompson Institute, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, United State (United States); Liu, Tong-Xian [State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology for Arid Areas, Key Laboratory of Northwest Loess Plateau Crop Pest Management of Ministry of Agriculture, College of Plant Protection, Northwest A& F University, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100 (China); Li, Zhaofei, E-mail: zhaofeili73@outlook.com [State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology for Arid Areas, Key Laboratory of Northwest Loess Plateau Crop Pest Management of Ministry of Agriculture, College of Plant Protection, Northwest A& F University, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100 (China)

    2016-01-15

    The Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus GP64 is a class III viral fusion protein. Although the post-fusion structure of GP64 has been solved, its pre-fusion structure and the detailed mechanism of conformational change are unknown. In GP64, domain V is predicted to interact with two domain I segments that flank fusion loop 2. To evaluate the significance of the amino acids involved in these interactions, we examined 24 amino acid positions that represent interacting and conserved residues within domains I and V. In several cases, substitution of a single amino acid involved in a predicted interaction disrupted membrane fusion activity, but no single amino acid pair appears to be absolutely required. We identified 4 critical residues in domain V (G438, W439, T452, and T456) that are important for membrane fusion, and two residues (G438 and W439) that appear to be important for formation or stability of the pre-fusion conformation of GP64. - Highlights: • The baculovirus envelope glycoprotein GP64 is a class III viral fusion protein. • The detailed mechanism of conformational change of GP64 is unknown. • We analyzed 24 positions that might stabilize the post-fusion structure of GP64. • We identified 4 residues in domain V that were critical for membrane fusion. • Two residues are critical for formation of the pre-fusion conformation of GP64.

  8. Cdc42p and Rho1p are sequentially activated and mechanistically linked to vacuole membrane fusion

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    Logan, Michael R.; Jones, Lynden [Department of Cell Biology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alta., Canada T6G 2H7 (Canada); Eitzen, Gary, E-mail: gary.eitzen@ualberta.ca [Department of Cell Biology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alta., Canada T6G 2H7 (Canada)

    2010-03-26

    Small monomeric GTPases act as molecular switches, regulating many biological functions via activation of membrane localized signaling cascades. Activation of their switch function is controlled by GTP binding and hydrolysis. Two Rho GTPases, Cdc42p and Rho1p, are localized to the yeast vacuole where they regulate membrane fusion. Here, we define a method to directly examine vacuole membrane Cdc42p and Rho1p activation based on their affinity to probes derived from effectors. Cdc42p and Rho1p showed unique temporal activation which aligned with distinct subreactions of in vitro vacuole fusion. Cdc42p was rapidly activated in an ATP-independent manner while Rho1p activation was kinetically slower and required ATP. Inhibitors that are known to block vacuole membrane fusion were examined for their effect on Cdc42p and Rho1p activation. Rdi1p, which inhibits the dissociation of GDP from Rho proteins, blocked both Cdc42p and Rho1p activation. Ligands of PI(4,5)P{sub 2} specifically inhibited Rho1p activation while pre-incubation with U73122, which targets Plc1p function, increased Rho1p activation. These results define unique activation mechanisms for Cdc42p and Rho1p, which may be linked to the vacuole membrane fusion mechanism.

  9. Role of a Transbilayer pH Gradient in the Membrane Fusion Activity of the Influenza Virus Hemagglutinin: Use of the R18 Assay to Monitor Membrane Merging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedroso de Lima Maria C.

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available It had been suggested that influenza virus-mediated membrane fusion might be dependent on a pH gradient across a target membrane. We have designed experiments in which this issue could be addressed. Two populations of liposomes were prepared, both simulating the plasma membrane of target cells, but with the pH of the internal aqueous medium buffered either at pH 7.4 (physiological cytosol pH or at pH 5.0 (endosomal pH at which influenza virus displays maximal fusion activity. By monitoring fusion using the R18 assay, we found that the internal pH of the target liposomes did not influence membrane merging as mediated by the influenza virus hemagglutinin, thus demonstrating that a transmembrane pH gradient is not required in this fusion process.

  10. Role of a Transbilayer pH Gradient in the Membrane Fusion Activity of the Influenza Virus Hemagglutinin: Use of the R18 Assay to Monitor Membrane Merging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramalho-Santos, João; Pedroso De Lima, Maria C.

    1999-03-16

    It had been suggested that influenza virus-mediated membrane fusion might be dependent on a pH gradient across a target membrane. We have designed experiments in which this issue could be addressed. Two populations of liposomes were prepared, both simulating the plasma membrane of target cells, but with the pH of the internal aqueous medium buffered either at pH 7.4 (physiological cytosol pH) or at pH 5.0 (endosomal pH at which influenza virus displays maximal fusion activity). By monitoring fusion using the R18 assay, we found that the internal pH of the target liposomes did not influence membrane merging as mediated by the influenza virus hemagglutinin, thus demonstrating that a transmembrane pH gradient is not required in this fusion process.

  11. Alphavirus Entry and Membrane Fusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margaret Kielian

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available The study of enveloped animal viruses has greatly advanced our understanding of the general properties of membrane fusion and of the specific pathways that viruses use to infect the host cell. The membrane fusion proteins of the alphaviruses and flaviviruses have many similarities in structure and function. As reviewed here, alphaviruses use receptor-mediated endocytic uptake and low pH-triggered membrane fusion to deliver their RNA genomes into the cytoplasm. Recent advances in understanding the biochemistry and structure of the alphavirus membrane fusion protein provide a clearer picture of this fusion reaction, including the protein’s conformational changes during fusion and the identification of key domains. These insights into the alphavirus fusion mechanism suggest new areas for experimental investigation and potential inhibitor strategies for anti-viral therapy.

  12. Sphingolipids activate membrane fusion of Semliki Forest virus in a stereospecific manner

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moesby, Lise; Corver, J; Erukulla, R K

    1995-01-01

    The alphavirus Semliki Forest virus (SFV) enters cells through receptor-mediated endocytosis. Subsequently, triggered by the acid pH in endosomes, the viral envelope fuses with the endosomal membrane. Membrane fusion of SFV has been shown previously to be dependent on the presence of cholesterol...

  13. Effect of viral membrane fusion activity on antibody induction by influenza H5N1 whole inactivated virus vaccine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geeraedts, Felix; ter Veer, Wouter; Wilschut, Jan; Huckriede, Anke; de Haan, Aalzen

    2012-10-05

    Whole inactivated virus (WIV) influenza vaccines are more immunogenic in unprimed individuals than split-virus or subunit vaccines. In mice, this superior immunogenicity has been linked to the recognition of the viral ssRNA by endosomal TLR7 receptors in immune cells, leading to IFNα production and Th1-type antibody responses. Recent data suggest that viral membrane fusion in target cell endosomes is necessary for TLR7-mediated IFNα induction. If so, virus inactivation procedures that compromise the fusion activity of WIV vaccines, like formaldehyde (FA) treatment, could potentially harm vaccine efficacy. Therefore, we measured the effect of fusion inactivation of H5N1 WIV on TLR7 activation in vitro, and on antibody isotype responses in vivo. Fusion inactivation of WIV reduced, but did not block, TLR7-dependent IFNα induction in murine dendritic cells in vitro. In vivo, fusion-inactive WIV was as potent as fusion-active WIV in inducing total H5N1-specific serum IgG and IgG2c subtype antibodies in unprimed mice. Both vaccines induced only small amounts of IgG1. However, FA treatment of WIV did reduce the capacity of the vaccine to induce hemagglutination-inhibiting (HI) antibodies. This possibly relates to modification of epitopes that are targets for HI antibodies rather than to loss of fusion activity. Antibody affinity maturation was not negatively affected by fusion inactivation. In conclusion, fusion activity of H5N1 WIV does not play a major role in Th1-type antibody induction. Yet, to preserve the full immunogenicity of WIV, or possibly also other inactivated influenza vaccines, harsh treatment with formaldehyde should be avoided. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. A Model for Membrane Fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngatchou, Annita

    2010-01-01

    Pheochromocytoma is a tumor of the adrenal gland which originates from chromaffin cells and is characterized by the secretion of excessive amounts of neurotransmitter which lead to high blood pressure and palpitations. Pheochromocytoma contain membrane bound granules that store neurotransmitter. The release of these stored molecules into the extracellular space occurs by fusion of the granule membrane with the cell plasma membrane, a process called exocytosis. The molecular mechanism of this membrane fusion is not well understood. It is proposed that the so called SNARE proteins [1] are the pillar of vesicle fusion as their cleavage by clostridial toxin notably, Botulinum neurotoxin and Tetanus toxin abrogate the secretion of neurotransmitter [2]. Here, I describe how physical principles are applied to a biological cell to explore the role of the vesicle SNARE protein synaptobrevin-2 in easing granule fusion. The data presented here suggest a paradigm according to which the movement of the C-terminal of synaptobrevin-2 disrupts the lipid bilayer to form a fusion pore through which molecules can exit.

  15. Doc2b promotes GLUT4 exocytosis by activating the SNARE-mediated fusion reaction in a calcium- and membrane bending-dependent manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Haijia; Rathore, Shailendra S; Davis, Eric M; Ouyang, Yan; Shen, Jingshi

    2013-04-01

    The glucose transporter GLUT4 plays a central role in maintaining body glucose homeostasis. On insulin stimulation, GLUT4-containing vesicles fuse with the plasma membrane, relocating GLUT4 from intracellular reservoirs to the cell surface to uptake excess blood glucose. The GLUT4 vesicle fusion reaction requires soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNAREs) as the core fusion engine and a group of regulatory proteins. In particular, the soluble C2-domain factor Doc2b plays a key role in GLUT4 vesicle fusion, but its molecular mechanism has been unclear. Here we reconstituted the SNARE-dependent GLUT4 vesicle fusion in a defined proteoliposome fusion system. We observed that Doc2b binds to GLUT4 exocytic SNAREs and potently accelerates the fusion kinetics in the presence of Ca(2+). The stimulatory activity of Doc2b requires intact Ca(2+)-binding sites on both the C2A and C2B domains. Using electron microscopy, we observed that Doc2b strongly bends the membrane bilayer, and this membrane-bending activity is essential to the stimulatory function of Doc2b in fusion. These results demonstrate that Doc2b promotes GLUT4 exocytosis by accelerating the SNARE-dependent fusion reaction by a Ca(2+)- and membrane bending-dependent mechanism. Of importance, certain features of Doc2b function appear to be distinct from how synaptotagmin-1 promotes synaptic neurotransmitter release, suggesting that exocytic Ca(2+) sensors may possess divergent mechanisms in regulating vesicle fusion.

  16. Role for membrane fusion in the activation of the respiratory burst in human neutrophils

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    Manara-Shediac, F.S.

    1986-01-01

    Components of the respiratory burst oxidase reside in intracellular membranes of the tertiary granules in resting cells, yet oxidase activity in the activated cells occurs at the neutrophil surface. The role of degranulation in activation of the neutrophil respiratory burst was therefore investigated. Surface labeling experiments were carried out on resting and activated neutrophils using three impermeant labeling methods. Activated neutrophils labeled with (/sup 35/S) diazobenzene sulfonic acid showed a fourfold higher specific radioactivity than resting neutrophils. Similar results were obtained with the pyridoxal phosphate/borotritide labeling method. On the other hand, little difference in labeling was seen using the periodate/borotritide method which detects the carbohydrate of glycoproteins. These results suggest that either a large amount of protein, or a highly reactive protein becomes exposed upon activation. Resting, activated, and enucleated cells were labeled using the (/sup 125/I) lactoperoxidase method, then subjected to polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Autoradiograms of these gels showed that two proteins of about 75 and 45 kD, are labeled at the external surface of enucleated and activated cells but not resting cells.

  17. A high throughput Cre–lox activated viral membrane fusion assay identifies pharmacological inhibitors of HIV entry

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    Esposito, Anthony M. [Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Immunology Institute, New York, NY (United States); Cheung, Pamela [Integrated Screening Core, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY (United States); Swartz, Talia H.; Li, Hongru [Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Immunology Institute, New York, NY (United States); Tsibane, Tshidi [Department of Microbiology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY (United States); Durham, Natasha D. [Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Immunology Institute, New York, NY (United States); Basler, Christopher F. [Department of Microbiology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY (United States); Felsenfeld, Dan P. [Integrated Screening Core, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY (United States); Chen, Benjamin K., E-mail: benjamin.chen@mssm.edu [Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Immunology Institute, New York, NY (United States)

    2016-03-15

    Enveloped virus entry occurs when viral and cellular membranes fuse releasing particle contents into the target cell. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) entry occurs by cell-free virus or virus transferred between infected and uninfected cells through structures called virological synapses. We developed a high-throughput cell-based assay to identify small molecule inhibitors of cell-free or virological synapse-mediated entry. An HIV clone carrying Cre recombinase as a Gag-internal gene fusion releases active Cre into cells upon viral entry activating a recombinatorial gene switch changing dsRed to GFP-expression. A screen of a 1998 known-biological profile small molecule library identified pharmacological HIV entry inhibitors that block both cell-free and cell-to-cell infection. Many top hits were noted as HIV inhibitors in prior studies, but not previously recognized as entry antagonists. Modest therapeutic indices for simvastatin and nigericin were observed in confirmatory HIV infection assays. This robust assay is adaptable to study HIV and heterologous viral pseudotypes. - Highlights: • Cre recombinase viral fusion assay screens cell-free or cell–cell entry inhibitors. • This Gag-iCre based assay is specific for the entry step of HIV replication. • Screened a library of known pharmacologic compounds for HIV fusion antagonists. • Many top hits were previously noted as HIV inhibitors, but here are classified as entry antagonists. Many top hits were previously noted as HIV inhibitors, but not as entry antagonists. • The assay is compatible with pseudotyping with HIV and heterologous viruses.

  18. Fusion of the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondrial outer membrane in rats brown adipose tissue: activation of thermogenesis by Ca2+.

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    Leopoldo de Meis

    Full Text Available Brown adipose tissue (BAT mitochondria thermogenesis is regulated by uncoupling protein 1 (UCP 1, GDP and fatty acids. In this report, we observed fusion of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER membrane with the mitochondrial outer membrane of rats BAT. Ca(2+-ATPase (SERCA 1 was identified by immunoelectron microscopy in both ER and mitochondria. This finding led us to test the Ca(2+ effect in BAT mitochondria thermogenesis. We found that Ca(2+ increased the rate of respiration and heat production measured with a microcalorimeter both in coupled and uncoupled mitochondria, but had no effect on the rate of ATP synthesis. The Ca(2+ concentration needed for half-maximal activation varied between 0.08 and 0.11 microM. The activation of respiration was less pronounced than that of heat production. Heat production and ATP synthesis were inhibited by rotenone and KCN. Liver mitochondria have no UCP1 and during respiration synthesize a large amount of ATP, produce little heat, GDP had no effect on mitochondria coupling, Ca(2+ strongly inhibited ATP synthesis and had little or no effect on the small amount of heat released. These finding indicate that Ca(2+ activation of thermogenesis may be a specific feature of BAT mitochondria not found in other mitochondria such as liver.

  19. Deacylation of the transmembrane domains of Sindbis virus envelope glycoproteins E1 and E2 does not affect low-pH-induced viral membrane fusion activity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, JM; Bittman, R; Wilschut, J

    2001-01-01

    The envelope glycoproteins E1 and E2 of Sindbis virus are palmitoylated at cysteine residues within their transmembrane domains (E1 at position 430, and E2 at positions 388 and 390), Here, we investigated the in vitro membrane fusion activity of Sindbis virus variants (derived from the Tote 1101 inf

  20. Fusion between perinuclear virions and the outer nuclear membrane requires the fusogenic activity of herpes simplex virus gB.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Catherine C; Wisner, Todd W; Hannah, Brian P; Eisenberg, Roselyn J; Cohen, Gary H; Johnson, David C

    2009-11-01

    Herpesviruses cross nuclear membranes (NMs) in two steps, as follows: (i) capsids assemble and bud through the inner NM into the perinuclear space, producing enveloped virus particles, and (ii) the envelopes of these virus particles fuse with the outer NM. Two herpes simplex virus (HSV) glycoproteins, gB and gH (the latter, likely complexed as a heterodimer with gL), are necessary for the second step of this process. Mutants lacking both gB and gH accumulate in the perinuclear space or in herniations (membrane vesicles derived from the inner NM). Both gB and gH/gL are also known to act directly in fusing the virion envelope with host cell membranes during HSV entry into cells, i.e., both glycoproteins appear to function directly in different aspects of the membrane fusion process. We hypothesized that HSV gB and gH/gL also act directly in the membrane fusion that occurs during virus egress from the nucleus. Previous studies of the role of gB and gH/gL in nuclear egress involved HSV gB and gH null mutants that could potentially also possess gross defects in the virion envelope. Here, we produced recombinant HSV-expressing mutant forms of gB with single amino acid substitutions in the hydrophobic "fusion loops." These fusion loops are thought to play a direct role in membrane fusion by insertion into cellular membranes. HSV recombinants expressing gB with any one of four fusion loop mutations (W174R, W174Y, Y179K, and A261D) were unable to enter cells. Moreover, two of the mutants, W174Y and Y179K, displayed reduced abilities to mediate HSV cell-to-cell spread, and W174R and A261D exhibited no spread. All mutant viruses exhibited defects in nuclear egress, enveloped virions accumulated in herniations and in the perinuclear space, and fewer enveloped virions were detected on cell surfaces. These results support the hypothesis that gB functions directly to mediate the fusion between perinuclear virus particles and the outer NM.

  1. Thermodynamics of Micelle Formation and Membrane Fusion Modulate Antimicrobial Lipopeptide Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Dejun; Grossfield, Alan

    2015-08-18

    Antimicrobial lipopeptides (AMLPs) are antimicrobial drug candidates that preferentially target microbial membranes. One class of AMLPs, composed of cationic tetrapeptides attached to an acyl chain, have minimal inhibitory concentrations in the micromolar range against a range of bacteria and fungi. Previously, we used coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations and free energy methods to study the thermodynamics of their interaction with membranes in their monomeric state. Here, we extended the study to the biologically relevant micellar state, using, to our knowledge, a novel reaction coordinate based on hydrophobic contacts. Using umbrella sampling along this reaction coordinate, we identified the critical transition states when micelles insert into membranes. The results indicate that the binding of these AMLP micelles to membranes is thermodynamically favorable, but in contrast to the monomeric case, there are significant free energy barriers. The height of these free energy barriers depends on the membrane composition, suggesting that the AMLPs' ability to selectively target bacterial membranes may be as much kinetic as thermodynamic. This mechanism highlights the importance of considering oligomeric state in solution as criterion when optimizing peptides or lipopeptides as antibiotic leads.

  2. Deployment of membrane fusion protein domains during fusion.

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    Bentz, J; Mittal, A

    2000-01-01

    It is clear that both viral and intracellular membrane fusion proteins contain a minimal set of domains which must be deployed at the appropriate time during the fusion process. An account of these domains and their functions is given here for the four best-described fusion systems: influenza HA, sendai virus F1, HIV gp120/41 and the neuronal SNARE core composed of synaptobrevin (syn), syntaxin (stx) and the N- and C-termini of SNAP25 (sn25), together with the Ca(2+)binding protein synaptotagmin (syt). Membrane fusion begins with the binding of the virion or vesicle to the target membrane via receptors. The committed step in influenza HA- mediated fusion begins with an aggregate of HAs (at least eight) with some of their HA2 N-termini, a.k.a. fusion peptides, embedded into the viral bilayer (Bentz, 2000 a). The hypothesis presented in Bentz (2000 b) is that the conformational change of HA to the extended coiled coil extracts the fusion peptides from the viral bilayer. When this extraction occurs from the center of the site of restricted lipid flow, it exposes acyl chains and parts of the HA transmembrane domains to the aqueous media, i.e. a hydrophobic defect is formed. This is the 'transition state' of the committed step of fusion. It is stabilized by a 'dam' of HAs, which are inhibited from diffusing away by the rest of the HAs in the aggregate and because that would initially expose more acyl chains to water. Recruitment of lipids from the apposed target membrane can heal this hydrophobic defect, initiating lipid mixing and fusion. The HA transmembrane domains are required to be part of the hydrophobic defect, because the HA aggregate must be closely packed enough to restrict lipid flow. This hypothesis provides a simple and direct coupling between the energy released by the formation of the coiled coil to the energy needed to create and stabilize the high energy intermediates of fusion. Several of these essential domains have been described for the viral fusion

  3. Organelle acidification negatively regulates vacuole membrane fusion in vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desfougères, Yann; Vavassori, Stefano; Rompf, Maria; Gerasimaite, Ruta; Mayer, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    The V-ATPase is a proton pump consisting of a membrane-integral V0 sector and a peripheral V1 sector, which carries the ATPase activity. In vitro studies of yeast vacuole fusion and evidence from worms, flies, zebrafish and mice suggested that V0 interacts with the SNARE machinery for membrane fusion, that it promotes the induction of hemifusion and that this activity requires physical presence of V0 rather than its proton pump activity. A recent in vivo study in yeast has challenged these interpretations, concluding that fusion required solely lumenal acidification but not the V0 sector itself. Here, we identify the reasons for this discrepancy and reconcile it. We find that acute pharmacological or physiological inhibition of V-ATPase pump activity de-acidifies the vacuole lumen in living yeast cells within minutes. Time-lapse microscopy revealed that de-acidification induces vacuole fusion rather than inhibiting it. Cells expressing mutated V0 subunits that maintain vacuolar acidity were blocked in this fusion. Thus, proton pump activity of the V-ATPase negatively regulates vacuole fusion in vivo. Vacuole fusion in vivo does, however, require physical presence of a fusion-competent V0 sector. PMID:27363625

  4. SARS-coronavirus spike S2 domain flanked by cysteine residues C822 and C833 is important for activation of membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madu, Ikenna G; Belouzard, Sandrine; Whittaker, Gary R

    2009-10-25

    The S2 domain of the coronavirus spike (S) protein is known to be responsible for mediating membrane fusion. In addition to a well-recognized cleavage site at the S1-S2 boundary, a second proteolytic cleavage site has been identified in the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) S2 domain (R797). C-terminal to this S2 cleavage site is a conserved region flanked by cysteine residues C822 and C833. Here, we investigated the importance of this well conserved region for SARS-CoV S-mediated fusion activation. We show that the residues between C822-C833 are well conserved across all coronaviruses. Mutagenic analysis of SARS-CoV S, combined with cell-cell fusion and pseudotyped virion infectivity assays, showed a critical role for the core-conserved residues C822, D830, L831, and C833. Based on available predictive models, we propose that the conserved domain flanked by cysteines 822 and 833 forms a loop structure that interacts with components of the SARS-CoV S trimer to control the activation of membrane fusion.

  5. Induction of heterosubtypic cross-protection against influenza by a whole inactivated virus vaccine: the role of viral membrane fusion activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalija Budimir

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The inability of seasonal influenza vaccines to effectively protect against infection with antigenically drifted viruses or newly emerging pandemic viruses underlines the need for development of cross-reactive influenza vaccines that induce immunity against a variety of virus subtypes. Therefore, potential cross-protective vaccines, e.g., whole inactivated virus (WIV vaccine, that can target conserved internal antigens such as the nucleoprotein (NP and/or matrix protein (M1 need to be explored. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In the current study we show that a WIV vaccine, through induction of cross-protective cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs, protects mice from heterosubtypic infection. This protection was abrogated after depletion of CD8+ cells in vaccinated mice, indicating that CTLs were the primary mediators of protection. Previously, we have shown that different procedures used for virus inactivation influence optimal activation of CTLs by WIV, most likely by affecting the membrane fusion properties of the virus. Specifically, inactivation with formalin (FA severely compromises fusion activity of the virus, while inactivation with β-propiolactone (BPL preserves fusion activity. Here, we demonstrate that vaccination of mice with BPL-inactivated H5N1 WIV vaccine induces solid protection from lethal heterosubtypic H1N1 challenge. By contrast, vaccination with FA-inactivated WIV, while preventing death after lethal challenge, failed to protect against development of disease and severe body weight loss. Vaccination with BPL-inactivated WIV, compared to FA-inactivated WIV, induced higher levels of specific CD8+ T cells in blood, spleen and lungs, and a higher production of granzyme B in the lungs upon H1N1 virus challenge. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The results underline the potential use of WIV as a cross-protective influenza vaccine candidate. However, careful choice of the virus inactivation procedure is important to retain membrane

  6. Induction of heterosubtypic cross-protection against influenza by a whole inactivated virus vaccine: the role of viral membrane fusion activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budimir, Natalija; Huckriede, Anke; Meijerhof, Tjarko; Boon, Louis; Gostick, Emma; Price, David A; Wilschut, Jan; de Haan, Aalzen

    2012-01-01

    The inability of seasonal influenza vaccines to effectively protect against infection with antigenically drifted viruses or newly emerging pandemic viruses underlines the need for development of cross-reactive influenza vaccines that induce immunity against a variety of virus subtypes. Therefore, potential cross-protective vaccines, e.g., whole inactivated virus (WIV) vaccine, that can target conserved internal antigens such as the nucleoprotein (NP) and/or matrix protein (M1) need to be explored. In the current study we show that a WIV vaccine, through induction of cross-protective cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs), protects mice from heterosubtypic infection. This protection was abrogated after depletion of CD8+ cells in vaccinated mice, indicating that CTLs were the primary mediators of protection. Previously, we have shown that different procedures used for virus inactivation influence optimal activation of CTLs by WIV, most likely by affecting the membrane fusion properties of the virus. Specifically, inactivation with formalin (FA) severely compromises fusion activity of the virus, while inactivation with β-propiolactone (BPL) preserves fusion activity. Here, we demonstrate that vaccination of mice with BPL-inactivated H5N1 WIV vaccine induces solid protection from lethal heterosubtypic H1N1 challenge. By contrast, vaccination with FA-inactivated WIV, while preventing death after lethal challenge, failed to protect against development of disease and severe body weight loss. Vaccination with BPL-inactivated WIV, compared to FA-inactivated WIV, induced higher levels of specific CD8+ T cells in blood, spleen and lungs, and a higher production of granzyme B in the lungs upon H1N1 virus challenge. The results underline the potential use of WIV as a cross-protective influenza vaccine candidate. However, careful choice of the virus inactivation procedure is important to retain membrane fusion activity and full immunogenicity of the vaccine.

  7. The Flocculating Cationic Polypetide from Moringa oleifera Seeds Damages Bacterial Cell Membranes by Causing Membrane Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shebek, Kevin; Schantz, Allen B; Sines, Ian; Lauser, Kathleen; Velegol, Stephanie; Kumar, Manish

    2015-04-21

    A cationic protein isolated from the seeds of the Moringa oleifera tree has been extensively studied for use in water treatment in developing countries and has been proposed for use in antimicrobial and therapeutic applications. However, the molecular basis for the antimicrobial action of this peptide, Moringa oleifera cationic protein (MOCP), has not been previously elucidated. We demonstrate here that a dominant mechanism of MOCP antimicrobial activity is membrane fusion. We used a combination of cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and fluorescence assays to observe and study the kinetics of fusion of membranes in liposomes representing model microbial cells. We also conducted cryo-EM experiments on E. coli cells where MOCP was seen to fuse the inner and outer membranes. Coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations of membrane vesicles with MOCP molecules were used to elucidate steps in peptide adsorption, stalk formation, and fusion between membranes.

  8. Investigation of SNARE-Mediated Membrane Fusion Mechanism Using Atomic Force Microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdulreda, Midhat H.; Moy, Vincent T.

    2009-01-01

    Membrane fusion is driven by specialized proteins that reduce the free energy penalty for the fusion process. In neurons and secretory cells, soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor-attachment protein (SNAP) receptors (SNAREs) mediate vesicle fusion with the plasma membrane during vesicular content release. Although, SNAREs have been widely accepted as the minimal machinery for membrane fusion, the specific mechanism for SNARE-mediated membrane fusion remains an active area of research. Here, we summarize recent findings based on force measurements acquired in a novel experimental system that uses atomic force microscope (AFM) force spectroscopy to investigate the mechanism(s) of membrane fusion and the role of SNAREs in facilitating membrane hemifusion during SNARE-mediated fusion. In this system, protein-free and SNARE-reconstituted lipid bilayers are formed on opposite (trans) substrates and the forces required to induce membrane hemifusion and fusion or to unbind single v-/t-SNARE complexes are measured. The obtained results provide evidence for a mechanism by which the pulling force generated by interacting trans-SNAREs provides critical proximity between the membranes and destabilizes the bilayers at fusion sites by broadening the hemifusion energy barrier and consequently making the membranes more prone to fusion. PMID:20228892

  9. Dissipative Particle Dynamics of tension-induced membrane fusion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shillcock, Julian C.

    2009-01-01

    Recent studies of tension-induced membrane fusion using dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulations are briefly reviewed. The stochastic nature of the fusion process makes it necessary to simulate a large number of fusion attempts in order to obtain reliable fusion statistics and to extract...

  10. Peptides and membrane fusion : Towards an understanding of the molecular mechanism of protein-induced fusion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pecheur, EI; Sainte-Marie, J; Bienvenue, A; Hoekstra, D

    1999-01-01

    Processes such as endo- or exocytosis, membrane recycling, fertilization and enveloped viruses infection require one or more critical membrane fusion reactions. A key feature in viral and cellular fusion phenomena is the involvement of specific fusion proteins. Among the few well-characterized fusio

  11. Visualization of membrane fusion, one particle at a time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otterstrom, Jason; van Oijen, Antoine M

    2013-03-12

    Protein-mediated fusion between phospholipid bilayers is a fundamental and necessary mechanism for many cellular processes. The short-lived nature of the intermediate states visited during fusion makes it challenging to capture precise kinetic information using classical, ensemble-averaging biophysical techniques. Recently, a number of single-particle fluorescence microscopy-based assays that allow researchers to obtain highly quantitative data about the fusion process by observing individual fusion events in real time have been developed. These assays depend upon changes in the acquired fluorescence signal to provide a direct readout for transitions between the various fusion intermediates. The resulting data yield meaningful and detailed kinetic information about the transitory states en route to productive membrane fusion. In this review, we highlight recent in vitro and in vivo studies of membrane fusion at the single-particle level in the contexts of viral membrane fusion and SNARE-mediated synaptic vesicle fusion. These studies afford insight into mechanisms of coordination between fusion-mediating proteins as well as coordination of the overall fusion process with other cellular processes. The development of single-particle approaches to investigate membrane fusion and their successful application to a number of model systems have resulted in a new experimental paradigm and open up considerable opportunities to extend these methods to other biological processes that involve membrane fusion.

  12. Fusion Pore Diameter Regulation by Cations Modulating Local Membrane Anisotropy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doron Kabaso

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The fusion pore is an aqueous channel that is formed upon the fusion of the vesicle membrane with the plasma membrane. Once the pore is open, it may close again (transient fusion or widen completely (full fusion to permit vesicle cargo discharge. While repetitive transient fusion pore openings of the vesicle with the plasma membrane have been observed in the absence of stimulation, their frequency can be further increased using a cAMP-increasing agent that drives the opening of nonspecific cation channels. Our model hypothesis is that the openings and closings of the fusion pore are driven by changes in the local concentration of cations in the connected vesicle. The proposed mechanism of fusion pore dynamics is considered as follows: when the fusion pore is closed or is extremely narrow, the accumulation of cations in the vesicle (increased cation concentration likely leads to lipid demixing at the fusion pore. This process may affect local membrane anisotropy, which reduces the spontaneous curvature and thus leads to the opening of the fusion pore. Based on the theory of membrane elasticity, we used a continuum model to explain the rhythmic opening and closing of the fusion pore.

  13. Characterization of a structural intermediate of flavivirus membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karin Stiasny

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Viral membrane fusion proceeds through a sequence of steps that are driven by triggered conformational changes of viral envelope glycoproteins, so-called fusion proteins. Although high-resolution structural snapshots of viral fusion proteins in their prefusion and postfusion conformations are available, it has been difficult to define intermediate structures of the fusion pathway because of their transient nature. Flaviviruses possess a class II viral fusion protein (E mediating fusion at acidic pH that is converted from a dimer to a trimer with a hairpin-like structure during the fusion process. Here we show for tick-borne encephalitis virus that exposure of virions to alkaline instead of acidic pH traps the particles in an intermediate conformation in which the E dimers dissociate and interact with target membranes via the fusion peptide without proceeding to the merger of the membranes. Further treatment to low pH, however, leads to fusion, suggesting that these monomers correspond to an as-yet-elusive intermediate required to convert the prefusion dimer into the postfusion trimer. Thus, the use of nonphysiological conditions allows a dissection of the flavivirus fusion process and the identification of two separate steps, in which membrane insertion of multiple copies of E monomers precedes the formation of hairpin-like trimers. This sequence of events provides important new insights for understanding the dynamic process of viral membrane fusion.

  14. Single-particle kinetics of influenza virus membrane fusion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Floyd, Daniel L.; Ragains, Justin R.; Skehel, John J.; Harrison, Stephen C.; Oijen, Antoine M. van; Harrison, Stephen C.

    2008-01-01

    Membrane fusion is an essential step during entry of enveloped viruses into cells. Conventional fusion assays are generally limited to observation of ensembles of multiple fusion events, confounding more detailed analysis of the sequence of the molecular steps involved. We have developed an in vitro

  15. Acidification triggers Andes hantavirus membrane fusion and rearrangement of Gc into a stable post-fusion homotrimer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acuña, Rodrigo; Bignon, Eduardo A; Mancini, Roberta; Lozach, Pierre-Yves; Tischler, Nicole D

    2015-11-01

    The hantavirus membrane fusion process is mediated by the Gc envelope glycoprotein from within endosomes. However, little is known about the specific mechanism that triggers Gc fusion activation, and its pre- and post-fusion conformations. We established cell-free in vitro systems to characterize hantavirus fusion activation. Low pH was sufficient to trigger the interaction of virus-like particles with liposomes. This interaction was dependent on a pre-fusion glycoprotein arrangement. Further, low pH induced Gc multimerization changes leading to non-reversible Gc homotrimers. These trimers were resistant to detergent, heat and protease digestion, suggesting characteristics of a stable post-fusion structure. No acid-dependent oligomerization rearrangement was detected for the trypsin-sensitive Gn envelope glycoprotein. Finally, acidification induced fusion of glycoprotein-expressing effector cells with non-susceptible CHO cells. Together, the data provide novel information on the Gc fusion trigger and its non-reversible activation involving lipid interaction, multimerization changes and membrane fusion which ultimately allow hantavirus entry into cells.

  16. A compensatory mutation provides resistance to disparate HIV fusion inhibitor peptides and enhances membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew P Wood

    Full Text Available Fusion inhibitors are a class of antiretroviral drugs used to prevent entry of HIV into host cells. Many of the fusion inhibitors being developed, including the drug enfuvirtide, are peptides designed to competitively inhibit the viral fusion protein gp41. With the emergence of drug resistance, there is an increased need for effective and unique alternatives within this class of antivirals. One such alternative is a class of cyclic, cationic, antimicrobial peptides known as θ-defensins, which are produced by many non-human primates and exhibit broad-spectrum antiviral and antibacterial activity. Currently, the θ-defensin analog RC-101 is being developed as a microbicide due to its specific antiviral activity, lack of toxicity to cells and tissues, and safety in animals. Understanding potential RC-101 resistance, and how resistance to other fusion inhibitors affects RC-101 susceptibility, is critical for future development. In previous studies, we identified a mutant, R5-tropic virus that had evolved partial resistance to RC-101 during in vitro selection. Here, we report that a secondary mutation in gp41 was found to restore replicative fitness, membrane fusion, and the rate of viral entry, which were compromised by an initial mutation providing partial RC-101 resistance. Interestingly, we show that RC-101 is effective against two enfuvirtide-resistant mutants, demonstrating the clinical importance of RC-101 as a unique fusion inhibitor. These findings both expand our understanding of HIV drug-resistance to diverse peptide fusion inhibitors and emphasize the significance of compensatory gp41 mutations.

  17. Imaging multiple intermediates of single-virus membrane fusion mediated by distinct fusion proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joo, Kye-Il; Tai, April; Lee, Chi-Lin; Wong, Clement; Wang, Pin

    2010-09-01

    Membrane fusion plays an essential role in the entry of enveloped viruses into target cells. The merging of viral and target cell membranes is catalyzed by viral fusion proteins, which involves multiple sequential steps in the fusion process. However, the fusion mechanisms mediated by different fusion proteins involve multiple transient intermediates that have not been well characterized. Here, we report a synthetic virus platform that allows us to better understand the different fusion mechanisms driven by the diverse types fusion proteins. The platform consists of lentiviral particles coenveloped with a surface antibody, which serves as the binding protein, along with a fusion protein derived from either influenza virus (HAmu) or Sindbis virus (SINmu). By using a single virus tracking technique, we demonstrated that both HAmu- and SINmu-bearing viruses enter cells through clathrin-dependent endocytosis, but they required different endosomal trafficking routes to initiate viral fusion. Direct observation of single viral fusion events clearly showed that hemifusion mediated by SINmu upon exposure to low pH occurs faster than that mediated by HAmu. Monitoring sequential fusion processes by dual labeling the outer and inner leaflets of viral membranes also revealed that the SINmu-mediated hemifusion intermediate is relatively long-lived as compared with that mediated by HAmu. Taken together, we have demonstrated that the combination of this versatile viral platform with the techniques of single virus tracking can be a powerful tool for revealing molecular details of fusion mediated by various fusion proteins.

  18. Role for the disulfide-bonded region of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 gp41 in receptor-triggered activation of membrane fusion function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bellamy-McIntyre, Anna K. [Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research and Public Health, Vic. 3004 (Australia); Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Vic. 3168 (Australia); Baer, Severine [Program Infection and Cancer, Abt. F010 and INSERM U701, Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, Heidelberg (Germany); Ludlow, Louise [Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research and Public Health, Vic. 3004 (Australia); Drummer, Heidi E. [Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research and Public Health, Vic. 3004 (Australia); Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Vic. 3168 (Australia); Department of Microbiology and Immunology, The University of Melbourne, Vic. 3010 (Australia); Poumbourios, Pantelis, E-mail: apoumbourios@burnet.edu.au [Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research and Public Health, Vic. 3004 (Australia); Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Vic. 3168 (Australia)

    2010-04-16

    The conserved disulfide-bonded region (DSR) of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) fusion glycoprotein, gp41, mediates association with the receptor-binding glycoprotein, gp120. Interactions between gp120, CD4 and chemokine receptors activate the fusion activity of gp41. The introduction of W596L and W610F mutations to the DSR of HIV-1{sub QH1549.13} blocked viral entry and hemifusion without affecting gp120-gp41 association. The fusion defect correlated with inhibition of CD4-triggered gp41 pre-hairpin formation, consistent with the DSR mutations having decoupled receptor-induced conformational changes in gp120 from gp41 activation. Our data implicate the DSR in sensing conformational changes in the gp120-gp41 complex that lead to fusion activation.

  19. The Multifaceted Role of SNARE Proteins in Membrane Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Jing; Pluhackova, Kristyna; Böckmann, Rainer A

    2017-01-01

    Membrane fusion is a key process in all living organisms that contributes to a variety of biological processes including viral infection, cell fertilization, as well as intracellular transport, and neurotransmitter release. In particular, the various membrane-enclosed compartments in eukaryotic cells need to exchange their contents and communicate across membranes. Efficient and controllable fusion of biological membranes is known to be driven by cooperative action of SNARE proteins, which constitute the central components of the eukaryotic fusion machinery responsible for fusion of synaptic vesicles with the plasma membrane. During exocytosis, vesicle-associated v-SNARE (synaptobrevin) and target cell-associated t-SNAREs (syntaxin and SNAP-25) assemble into a core trans-SNARE complex. This complex plays a versatile role at various stages of exocytosis ranging from the priming to fusion pore formation and expansion, finally resulting in the release or exchange of the vesicle content. This review summarizes current knowledge on the intricate molecular mechanisms underlying exocytosis triggered and catalyzed by SNARE proteins. Particular attention is given to the function of the peptidic SNARE membrane anchors and the role of SNARE-lipid interactions in fusion. Moreover, the regulatory mechanisms by synaptic auxiliary proteins in SNARE-driven membrane fusion are briefly outlined.

  20. Dual Split Protein (DSP) Assay to Monitor Cell-Cell Membrane Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakane, Shuhei; Matsuda, Zene

    2015-01-01

    Fusion between viral and cellular membranes is the essential first step in infection of enveloped viruses. This step is mediated by viral envelope glycoproteins (Env) that recognize cellular receptors. The membrane fusion between the effector cells expressing viral Env and the target cells expressing its receptors can be monitored by several methods. We have recently developed a pair of chimeric reporter protein composed of split Renilla luciferase (RL) and split GFP. We named this reporter dual split protein (DSP), since it recovers both RL and GFP activities upon self reassociation. By using DSP, pore formation and content mixing between the effector and target cells can be monitored upon the recovery of RL and GFP activities after the membrane fusion. This quick assay provides quantitative as well as spatial information about membrane fusion mediated by viral Env.

  1. The Hemifused State on the Pathway to Membrane Fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warner, Jason M.; O'Shaughnessy, Ben

    2012-04-01

    Fusion of compartments enclosed by membrane bilayers enables secretion and other vital cellular processes and is widely studied in model synthetic membrane systems. Experiments suggest the fusion pathway passes through a hemifused intermediate where only outer monolayers are fused. Here we show membrane tension and divalent cations drive vesicles to hemifused equilibrium with expanded hemifusion diaphragms (HDs) where inner monolayers engage. Predicted HD sizes agree with recent measurements of Nikolaus [Biophys. J. 98, 1192 (2010).BIOJAU0006-349510.1016/j.bpj.2009.11.042]. The fusion pathway is completed by HD lysis provided HD tension is sufficiently high.

  2. Cell-based analysis of Chikungunya virus E1 protein in membrane fusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuo Szu-Cheng

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chikungunya fever is a pandemic disease caused by the mosquito-borne Chikungunya virus (CHIKV. E1 glycoprotein mediation of viral membrane fusion during CHIKV infection is a crucial step in the release of viral genome into the host cytoplasm for replication. How the E1 structure determines membrane fusion and whether other CHIKV structural proteins participate in E1 fusion activity remain largely unexplored. Methods A bicistronic baculovirus expression system to produce recombinant baculoviruses for cell-based assay was used. Sf21 insect cells infected by recombinant baculoviruses bearing wild type or single-amino-acid substitution of CHIKV E1 and EGFP (enhanced green fluorescence protein were employed to investigate the roles of four E1 amino acid residues (G91, V178, A226, and H230 in membrane fusion activity. Results Western blot analysis revealed that the E1 expression level and surface features in wild type and mutant substituted cells were similar. However, cell fusion assay found that those cells infected by CHIKV E1-H230A mutant baculovirus showed little fusion activity, and those bearing CHIKV E1-G91D mutant completely lost the ability to induce cell-cell fusion. Cells infected by recombinant baculoviruses of CHIKV E1-A226V and E1-V178A mutants exhibited the same membrane fusion capability as wild type. Although the E1 expression level of cells bearing monomeric-E1-based constructs (expressing E1 only was greater than that of cells bearing 26S-based constructs (expressing all structural proteins, the sizes of syncytial cells induced by infection of baculoviruses containing 26S-based constructs were larger than those from infections having monomeric-E1 constructs, suggesting that other viral structure proteins participate or regulate E1 fusion activity. Furthermore, membrane fusion in cells infected by baculovirus bearing the A226V mutation constructs exhibited increased cholesterol-dependences and lower pH thresholds

  3. The cytoplasmic domain of the gamete membrane fusion protein HAP2 targets the protein to the fusion site in Chlamydomonas and regulates the fusion reaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanjie; Pei, Jimin; Grishin, Nick; Snell, William J.

    2015-01-01

    Cell-cell fusion between gametes is a defining step during development of eukaryotes, yet we know little about the cellular and molecular mechanisms of the gamete membrane fusion reaction. HAP2 is the sole gamete-specific protein in any system that is broadly conserved and shown by gene disruption to be essential for gamete fusion. The wide evolutionary distribution of HAP2 (also known as GCS1) indicates it was present in the last eukaryotic common ancestor and, therefore, dissecting its molecular properties should provide new insights into fundamental features of fertilization. HAP2 acts at a step after membrane adhesion, presumably directly in the merger of the lipid bilayers. Here, we use the unicellular alga Chlamydomonas to characterize contributions of key regions of HAP2 to protein location and function. We report that mutation of three strongly conserved residues in the ectodomain has no effect on targeting or fusion, although short deletions that include those residues block surface expression and fusion. Furthermore, HAP2 lacking a 237-residue segment of the cytoplasmic region is expressed at the cell surface, but fails to localize at the apical membrane patch specialized for fusion and fails to rescue fusion. Finally, we provide evidence that the ancient HAP2 contained a juxta-membrane, multi-cysteine motif in its cytoplasmic region, and that mutation of a cysteine dyad in this motif preserves protein localization, but substantially impairs HAP2 fusion activity. Thus, the ectodomain of HAP2 is essential for its surface expression, and the cytoplasmic region targets HAP2 to the site of fusion and regulates the fusion reaction. PMID:25655701

  4. Dynamic Viral Glycoprotein Machines: Approaches for Probing Transient States That Drive Membrane Fusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalie K. Garcia

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The fusion glycoproteins that decorate the surface of enveloped viruses undergo dramatic conformational changes in the course of engaging with target cells through receptor interactions and during cell entry. These refolding events ultimately drive the fusion of viral and cellular membranes leading to delivery of the genetic cargo. While well-established methods for structure determination such as X-ray crystallography have provided detailed structures of fusion proteins in the pre- and post-fusion fusion states, to understand mechanistically how these fusion glycoproteins perform their structural calisthenics and drive membrane fusion requires new analytical approaches that enable dynamic intermediate states to be probed. Methods including structural mass spectrometry, small-angle X-ray scattering, and electron microscopy have begun to provide new insight into pathways of conformational change and fusion protein function. In combination, the approaches provide a significantly richer portrait of viral fusion glycoprotein structural variation and fusion activation as well as inhibition by neutralizing agents. Here recent studies that highlight the utility of these complementary approaches will be reviewed with a focus on the well-characterized influenza virus hemagglutinin fusion glycoprotein system.

  5. Homotypic fusion of endoplasmic reticulum membranes in plant cells

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    Junjie eHu

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The endoplasmic reticulum (ER is a membrane-bounded organelle whose membrane comprises a network of tubules and sheets. The formation of these characteristic shapes and maintenance of their continuity through homotypic membrane fusion appears to be critical for the proper functioning of the ER. The atlastins (ATLs, a family of ER-localized dynamin-like GTPases, have been identified as fusogens of the ER membranes in metazoans. Mutations of the ATL proteins in mammalian cells cause morphological defects in the ER, and purified Drosophila ATL mediates membrane fusion in vitro. Plant cells do not possess ATL, but a family of similar GTPases, named root hair defective 3 (RHD3, are likely the functional orthologs of ATLs. In this review, we summarize recent advances in our understanding of how RHD3 proteins play a role in homotypic ER fusion. We also discuss the possible physiological significance of forming a tubular ER network in plant cells.

  6. Biochemical reconstitution of hemorrhagic-fever arenavirus envelope glycoprotein-mediated membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Celestine J Thomas

    Full Text Available The membrane-anchored proteins of enveloped viruses form labile spikes on the virion surface, primed to undergo large-scale conformational changes culminating in virus-cell membrane fusion and viral entry. The prefusion form of these envelope glycoproteins thus represents an important molecular target for antiviral intervention. A critical roadblock to this endeavor has been our inability to produce the prefusion envelope glycoprotein trimer for biochemical and structural analysis. Through our studies of the GPC envelope glycoprotein of the hemorrhagic fever arenaviruses, we have shown that GPC is unique among class I viral fusion proteins in that the mature complex retains a stable signal peptide (SSP in addition to the conventional receptor-binding and transmembrane fusion subunits. In this report we show that the recombinant GPC precursor can be produced as a discrete native-like trimer and that its proteolytic cleavage generates the mature glycoprotein. Proteoliposomes containing the cleaved GPC mediate pH-dependent membrane fusion, a characteristic feature of arenavirus entry. This reaction is inhibited by arenavirus-specific monoclonal antibodies and small-molecule fusion inhibitors. The in vitro reconstitution of GPC-mediated membrane-fusion activity offers unprecedented opportunities for biochemical and structural studies of arenavirus entry and its inhibition. To our knowledge, this report is the first to demonstrate functional reconstitution of membrane fusion by a viral envelope glycoprotein.

  7. Fusion of membranes during fertilization. Increases of the sea urchin egg's membrane capacitance and membrane conductance at the site of contact with the sperm

    OpenAIRE

    1992-01-01

    The early events of fertilization that precede and cause activation of an egg have not been fully elucidated. The earliest electrophysiological change in the sea urchin egg is a sperm-evoked increase of the egg's membrane conductance. The resulting depolarization facilitates entry of the fertilizing sperm and precludes the entry of supernumerary sperm. The sequence of the increase in the egg's membrane conductance, gamete membrane fusion, egg activation, and sperm entry, including causal rela...

  8. Herpesvirus glycoproteins undergo multiple antigenic changes before membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel L Glauser

    Full Text Available Herpesvirus entry is a complicated process involving multiple virion glycoproteins and culminating in membrane fusion. Glycoprotein conformation changes are likely to play key roles. Studies of recombinant glycoproteins have revealed some structural features of the virion fusion machinery. However, how the virion glycoproteins change during infection remains unclear. Here using conformation-specific monoclonal antibodies we show in situ that each component of the Murid Herpesvirus-4 (MuHV-4 entry machinery--gB, gH/gL and gp150--changes in antigenicity before tegument protein release begins. Further changes then occurred upon actual membrane fusion. Thus virions revealed their final fusogenic form only in late endosomes. The substantial antigenic differences between this form and that of extracellular virions suggested that antibodies have only a limited opportunity to block virion membrane fusion.

  9. Low energy cost for optimal speed and control of membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    François-Martin, Claire; Rothman, James E; Pincet, Frederic

    2017-02-07

    Membrane fusion is the cell's delivery process, enabling its many compartments to receive cargo and machinery for cell growth and intercellular communication. The overall activation energy of the process must be large enough to prevent frequent and nonspecific spontaneous fusion events, yet must be low enough to allow it to be overcome upon demand by specific fusion proteins [such as soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNAREs)]. Remarkably, to the best of our knowledge, the activation energy for spontaneous bilayer fusion has never been measured. Multiple models have been developed and refined to estimate the overall activation energy and its component parts, and they span a very broad range from 20 kBT to 150 kBT, depending on the assumptions. In this study, using a bulk lipid-mixing assay at various temperatures, we report that the activation energy of complete membrane fusion is at the lowest range of these theoretical values. Typical lipid vesicles were found to slowly and spontaneously fully fuse with activation energies of ∼30 kBT Our data demonstrate that the merging of membranes is not nearly as energy consuming as anticipated by many models and is ideally positioned to minimize spontaneous fusion while enabling rapid, SNARE-dependent fusion upon demand.

  10. Optimization of membrane protein overexpression and purification using GFP fusions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Drew, David; Lerch, Mirjam; Kunji, Edmund; Slotboom, Dirk-Jan; de Gier, Jan-Willem

    2006-01-01

    Optimizing conditions for the overexpression and purification of membrane proteins for functional and structural studies is usually a Laborious and time-consuming process. This process can be accelerated using membrane protein-GFP fusions(1-3), which allows direct monitoring and visualization of mem

  11. Conflicting views on the membrane fusion machinery and the fusion pore

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Jakob B

    2009-01-01

    of the assembly of the fusogenic SNARE-complex. Here, I review conflicting views on the function of the core fusion machinery consisting of the SNAREs, Munc18, complexin, and synaptotagmin. Munc18 controls docking of vesicles to the plasma membrane and initial SNARE-complex assembly, whereas complexin...... and synaptotagmin cooperate in holding the SNARE complex in an intermediate release-ready or cocked state. Different effects of complexin and synaptotagmin shape the energy landscape for fusion and make final fusion calcium triggered. The final steps are fusion pore formation and expansion, which allow release...

  12. Inner membrane fusion mediates spatial distribution of axonal mitochondria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yiyi; Lee, Hao-Chih; Chen, Kuan-Chieh; Suhan, Joseph; Qiu, Minhua; Ba, Qinle; Yang, Ge

    2016-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, mitochondria form a dynamic interconnected network to respond to changing needs at different subcellular locations. A fundamental yet unanswered question regarding this network is whether, and if so how, local fusion and fission of individual mitochondria affect their global distribution. To address this question, we developed high-resolution computational image analysis techniques to examine the relations between mitochondrial fusion/fission and spatial distribution within the axon of Drosophila larval neurons. We found that stationary and moving mitochondria underwent fusion and fission regularly but followed different spatial distribution patterns and exhibited different morphology. Disruption of inner membrane fusion by knockdown of dOpa1, Drosophila Optic Atrophy 1, not only increased the spatial density of stationary and moving mitochondria but also changed their spatial distributions and morphology differentially. Knockdown of dOpa1 also impaired axonal transport of mitochondria. But the changed spatial distributions of mitochondria resulted primarily from disruption of inner membrane fusion because knockdown of Milton, a mitochondrial kinesin-1 adapter, caused similar transport velocity impairment but different spatial distributions. Together, our data reveals that stationary mitochondria within the axon interconnect with moving mitochondria through fusion and fission and that local inner membrane fusion between individual mitochondria mediates their global distribution. PMID:26742817

  13. On the mechanism of intracellular membrane fusion : In search of the genuine fusion factor

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pecheur, EI; Maier, O; Hoekstra, D

    2000-01-01

    Intracellular membrane Fusion events require a general protein machinery that functions in vesicular traffic and in assembly and maintenance of organelles. An array of cytosolic and integral membrane proteins are currently identified, and in conjunction with ongoing detailed structural studies, rapi

  14. Two coiled-coil domains of Chlamydia trachomatis IncA affect membrane fusion events during infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Ronzone

    Full Text Available Chlamydia trachomatis replicates in a parasitophorous membrane-bound compartment called an inclusion. The inclusions corrupt host vesicle trafficking networks to avoid the degradative endolysosomal pathway but promote fusion with each other in order to sustain higher bacterial loads in a process known as homotypic fusion. The Chlamydia protein IncA (Inclusion protein A appears to play central roles in both these processes as it participates to homotypic fusion and inhibits endocytic SNARE-mediated membrane fusion. How IncA selectively inhibits or activates membrane fusion remains poorly understood. In this study, we analyzed the spatial and molecular determinants of IncA's fusogenic and inhibitory functions. Using a cell-free membrane fusion assay, we found that inhibition of SNARE-mediated fusion requires IncA to be on the same membrane as the endocytic SNARE proteins. IncA displays two coiled-coil domains showing high homology with SNARE proteins. Domain swap and deletion experiments revealed that although both these domains are capable of independently inhibiting SNARE-mediated fusion, these two coiled-coil domains cooperate in mediating IncA multimerization and homotypic membrane interaction. Our results support the hypothesis that Chlamydia employs SNARE-like virulence factors that positively and negatively affect membrane fusion and promote infection.

  15. Two coiled-coil domains of Chlamydia trachomatis IncA affect membrane fusion events during infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronzone, Erik; Paumet, Fabienne

    2013-01-01

    Chlamydia trachomatis replicates in a parasitophorous membrane-bound compartment called an inclusion. The inclusions corrupt host vesicle trafficking networks to avoid the degradative endolysosomal pathway but promote fusion with each other in order to sustain higher bacterial loads in a process known as homotypic fusion. The Chlamydia protein IncA (Inclusion protein A) appears to play central roles in both these processes as it participates to homotypic fusion and inhibits endocytic SNARE-mediated membrane fusion. How IncA selectively inhibits or activates membrane fusion remains poorly understood. In this study, we analyzed the spatial and molecular determinants of IncA's fusogenic and inhibitory functions. Using a cell-free membrane fusion assay, we found that inhibition of SNARE-mediated fusion requires IncA to be on the same membrane as the endocytic SNARE proteins. IncA displays two coiled-coil domains showing high homology with SNARE proteins. Domain swap and deletion experiments revealed that although both these domains are capable of independently inhibiting SNARE-mediated fusion, these two coiled-coil domains cooperate in mediating IncA multimerization and homotypic membrane interaction. Our results support the hypothesis that Chlamydia employs SNARE-like virulence factors that positively and negatively affect membrane fusion and promote infection.

  16. Flavivirus cell entry and membrane fusion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, Jolanda M.; Moesker, Bastiaan; Rodenhuis-Zybert, Izabela; Wilschut, Jan

    2011-01-01

    Flaviviruses, such as dengue virus and West Nile virus, are enveloped viruses that infect cells through receptor-mediated endocytosis and fusion from within acidic endosomes. The cell entry process of flaviviruses is mediated by the viral E glycoprotein. This short review will address recent advance

  17. Flavivirus cell entry and membrane fusion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, Jolanda M.; Moesker, Bastiaan; Rodenhuis-Zybert, Izabela; Wilschut, Jan

    2011-01-01

    Flaviviruses, such as dengue virus and West Nile virus, are enveloped viruses that infect cells through receptor-mediated endocytosis and fusion from within acidic endosomes. The cell entry process of flaviviruses is mediated by the viral E glycoprotein. This short review will address recent advance

  18. Assessing the efficacy of vesicle fusion with planar membrane arrays using a mitochondrial porin as reporter

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pszon-Bartosz, Kamila Justyna; Hansen, Jesper S.; Stibius, Karin B.

    2011-01-01

    reconstitution in biomimetic membrane arrays may be quantified using the developed FomA assay. Specifically, we show that FomA vesicles are inherently fusigenic. Optimal FomA incorporation is obtained with a proteoliposome lipid-to-protein molar ratio (LPR)=50 more than 105 FomA proteins could be incorporated......Reconstitution of functionally active membrane protein into artificially made lipid bilayers is a challenge that must be overcome to create a membrane-based biomimetic sensor and separation device. In this study we address the efficacy of proteoliposome fusion with planar membrane arrays. We...... establish a protein incorporation efficacy assay using the major non-specific porin of Fusobacterium nucleatum (FomA) as reporter. We use electrical conductance measurements and fluorescence microscopy to characterize proteoliposome fusion with an array of planar membranes. We show that protein...

  19. Specific interaction of IM30/Vipp1 with cyanobacterial and chloroplast membranes results in membrane remodeling and eventually in membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heidrich, Jennifer; Thurotte, Adrien; Schneider, Dirk

    2017-04-01

    The photosynthetic light reaction takes place within the thylakoid membrane system in cyanobacteria and chloroplasts. Besides its global importance, the biogenesis, maintenance and dynamics of this membrane system are still a mystery. In the last two decades, strong evidence supported the idea that these processes involve IM30, the inner membrane-associated protein of 30kDa, a protein also known as the vesicle-inducing protein in plastids 1 (Vipp1). Even though we just only begin to understand the precise physiological function of this protein, it is clear that interaction of IM30 with membranes is crucial for biogenesis of thylakoid membranes. Here we summarize and discuss forces guiding IM30-membrane interactions, as the membrane properties as well as the oligomeric state of IM30 appear to affect proper interaction of IM30 with membrane surfaces. Interaction of IM30 with membranes results in an altered membrane structure and can finally trigger fusion of adjacent membranes, when Mg(2+) is present. Based on recent results, we finally present a model summarizing individual steps involved in IM30-mediated membrane fusion. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Lipid order/lipid defects and lipid-control of protein activity edited by Dirk Schneider.

  20. Trafficking of Intracellular Membranes: Mass action model of virus fusion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nir, Shlomo; Duzgunes, Nejat; Hoekstra, Dick; Ramalho-Santos, Joao; Pedroso de Lima, Maria C

    1995-01-01

    :Shlomo Nir, Nejat Düzgüneş, Dick Hoekstra, João Ramalho-Santos, Maria C. Pedroso de Lima The purpose of this presentation is to describe procedures of analysis of final extents and kinetics of virus fusion with target membranes. The presentation of results will focus on deductions from studies of f

  1. Simulation of polyethylene glycol and calcium-mediated membrane fusion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pannuzzo, Martina; De Jong, Djurre H.; Raudino, Antonio; Marrink, Siewert J.

    2014-01-01

    We report on the mechanism of membrane fusion mediated by polyethylene glycol (PEG) and Ca2+ by means of a coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulation approach. Our data provide a detailed view on the role of cations and polymer in modulating the interaction between negatively charged apposed membr

  2. Slow fusion of liposomes composed of membrane-spanning lipids

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Elferink, MGL; vanBreemen, J; Konings, WN; Driessen, AJM; Wilschut, J; Elferink, Marieke G.L.

    1997-01-01

    The fusion characteristics of large unilamellar liposomes composed of bipolar tetraether lipids extracted from the thermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus acidocaldarius, was investigated. These lipids span the entire membrane and form single monolayer liposomes in aqueous media [Elferink, M.G.L., de Wit,

  3. Dual action of BPC194 : a membrane active peptide killing bacterial cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Moiset, Gemma; Cirac, Anna D; Stuart, Marc C A; Marrink, Siewert-Jan; Sengupta, Durba; Poolman, Bert

    2013-01-01

    Membrane active peptides can perturb the lipid bilayer in several ways, such as poration and fusion of the target cell membrane, and thereby efficiently kill bacterial cells. We probe here the mechanistic basis of membrane poration and fusion caused by membrane-active, antimicrobial peptides. We

  4. Shear-Induced Membrane Fusion in Viscous Solutions

    KAUST Repository

    Kogan, Maxim

    2014-05-06

    Large unilamellar lipid vesicles do not normally fuse under fluid shear stress. They might deform and open pores to relax the tension to which they are exposed, but membrane fusion occurring solely due to shear stress has not yet been reported. We present evidence that shear forces in a viscous solution can induce lipid bilayer fusion. The fusion of 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3- phosphocholine (DOPC) liposomes is observed in Couette flow with shear rates above 3000 s-1 provided that the medium is viscous enough. Liposome samples, prepared at different viscosities using a 0-50 wt % range of sucrose concentration, were studied by dynamic light scattering, lipid fusion assays using Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET), and linear dichroism (LD) spectroscopy. Liposomes in solutions with 40 wt % (or more) sucrose showed lipid fusion under shear forces. These results support the hypothesis that under suitable conditions lipid membranes may fuse in response to mechanical-force- induced stress. © 2014 American Chemical Society.

  5. Appoptosin interacts with mitochondrial outer-membrane fusion proteins and regulates mitochondrial morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Cuilin; Shi, Zhun; Zhang, Lingzhi; Zhou, Zehua; Zheng, Xiaoyuan; Liu, Guiying; Bu, Guojun; Fraser, Paul E; Xu, Huaxi; Zhang, Yun-Wu

    2016-03-01

    Mitochondrial morphology is regulated by fusion and fission machinery. Impaired mitochondria dynamics cause various diseases, including Alzheimer's disease. Appoptosin (encoded by SLC25A38) is a mitochondrial carrier protein that is located in the mitochondrial inner membrane. Appoptosin overexpression causes overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and caspase-dependent apoptosis, whereas appoptosin downregulation abolishes β-amyloid-induced mitochondrial fragmentation and neuronal death during Alzheimer's disease. Herein, we found that overexpression of appoptosin resulted in mitochondrial fragmentation in a manner independent of its carrier function, ROS production or caspase activation. Although appoptosin did not affect levels of mitochondrial outer-membrane fusion (MFN1 and MFN2), inner-membrane fusion (OPA1) and fission [DRP1 (also known as DNM1L) and FIS1] proteins, appoptosin interacted with MFN1 and MFN2, as well as with the mitochondrial ubiquitin ligase MITOL (also known as MARCH5) but not OPA1, FIS1 or DRP1. Appoptosin overexpression impaired the interaction between MFN1 and MFN2, and mitochondrial fusion. By contrast, co-expression of MFN1, MITOL and a dominant-negative form of DRP1, DRP1(K38A), partially rescued appoptosin-induced mitochondrial fragmentation and apoptosis, whereas co-expression of FIS1 aggravated appoptosin-induced apoptosis. Together, our results demonstrate that appoptosin can interact with mitochondrial outer-membrane fusion proteins and regulates mitochondrial morphology.

  6. Affinity Thresholds for Membrane Fusion Triggering by Viral Glycoproteins▿

    OpenAIRE

    Hasegawa, Kosei; Hu, Chunling; Nakamura, Takafumi; Marks, James D.; Russell, Stephen J.; Peng, Kah-Whye

    2007-01-01

    Enveloped viruses trigger membrane fusion to gain entry into cells. The receptor affinities of their attachment proteins vary greatly, from 10−4 M to 10−9 M, but the significance of this is unknown. Using six retargeted measles viruses that bind to Her-2/neu with a 5-log range in affinity, we show that receptor affinity has little impact on viral attachment but is nevertheless a key determinant of infectivity and intercellular fusion. For a given cell surface receptor density, there is an aff...

  7. Plant cytokinesis: a tale of membrane traffic and fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jürgens, Gerd; Park, Misoon; Richter, Sandra; Touihri, Sonja; Krause, Cornelia; El Kasmi, Farid; Mayer, Ulrike

    2015-02-01

    Cytokinesis separates the forming daughter cells. Higher plants have lost the ability to constrict the plasma membrane (PM) in the division plane. Instead, trans-Golgi network (TGN)-derived membrane vesicles are targeted to the centre of the division plane and generate, by homotypic fusion, the partitioning membrane named cell plate (CP). The CP expands in a centrifugal fashion until its margin fuses with the PM at the cortical division site. Mutant screens in Arabidopsis have identified a cytokinesis-specific syntaxin named KNOLLE and an interacting Sec1/Munc18 (SM) protein named KEULE both of which are required for vesicle fusion during cytokinesis. KNOLLE is only made during M-phase, targeted to the division plane and degraded in the vacuole at the end of cytokinesis. Here we address mechanisms of KNOLLE trafficking and interaction of KNOLLE with different soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor (NSF) attachment protein (SNAP) receptor (SNARE) partners and with SM-protein KEULE, ensuring membrane fusion in cytokinesis.

  8. Septal membrane fusion--a pivotal event in bacterial spore formation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higgins, M L; Piggot, P J

    1992-09-01

    Formation of the asymmetrically located septum divides sporulating bacilli into two distinct cells: the mother cell and the prespore. The rigidifying wall material in the septum is subsequently removed by autolysis. Examination of published electron micrographs indicates that the two septal membranes then fuse to form a single membrane. Membrane fusion would be expected to have profound consequences for subsequent development. For example, it is suggested that fusion activates processing of pro-sigma E to sigma E in the cytoplasm by exposing it to a membrane-bound processing enzyme. Asymmetry of the fused membrane could restrict processing to one face of the membrane and hence explain why sigma E is associated with transcription in the mother cell but not in the prespore. Asymmetry of the fused membrane might also provide a mechanism for restricting the activity of another factor, sigma F, to the prespore. Attachment of the flexible fused septal membrane to the condensing prespore nucleoid could help drive the engulfment of the prespore by the mother cell.

  9. Membrane-transferring regions of gp41 as targets for HIV-1 fusion inhibition and viral neutralization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huarte, Nerea; Lorizate, Maier; Pérez-Payá, Enrique; Nieva, José L

    2011-12-01

    The fusogenic function of HIV-1 gp41 transmembrane Env subunit relies on two different kinds of structural elements: i) a collapsible ectodomain structure (the hairpin or six-helix bundle) that opens and closes, and ii) two membrane- transferring regions (MTRs), the fusion peptide (FP) and the membrane-proximal external region (MPER), which ensure coupling of hairpin closure to apposition and fusion of cell and viral membranes. The isolation of naturally produced short peptides and neutralizing IgG-s, that interact with FP and MPER, respectively, and block viral infection, suggests that these conserved regions might represent useful targets for clinical intervention. Furthermore, MTR-derived peptides have been shown to be membrane-active. Here, it is discussed the potential use of these molecules and how the analysis of their membrane activity in vitro could contribute to the development of HIV fusion inhibitors and effective immunogens.

  10. Tri-membrane nanoparticles produced by combining liposome fusion and a novel patchwork of bicelles to overcome endosomal and nuclear membrane barriers to cargo delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamada, Asako; Mitsueda, Asako; Hasan, Mahadi; Ueda, Miho; Hama, Susumu; Warashina, Shota; Nakamura, Takashi; Harashima, Hideyoshi; Kogure, Kentaro

    2016-03-01

    Membrane fusion is a rational strategy for crossing intracellular membranes that present barriers to liposomal nanocarrier-mediated delivery of plasmid DNA into the nucleus of non-dividing cells, such as dendritic cells. Based on this strategy, we previously developed nanocarriers consisting of a nucleic acid core particle coated with four lipid membranes [Akita, et al., Biomaterials, 2009, 30, 2940-2949]. However, including the endosomal membrane and two nuclear membranes, cells possess three intracellular membranous barriers. Thus, after entering the nucleus, nanoparticles coated with four membranes would still have one lipid membrane remaining, and could impede cargo delivery. Until now, coating a core particle with an odd number of lipid membranes was challenging. To produce nanocarriers with an odd number of lipid membranes, we developed a novel coating method involving lipid nano-discs, also known as bicelles, as a material for packaging DNA in a carrier with an odd number of lipid membranes. In this procedure, bicelles fuse to form an outer coating that resembles a patchwork quilt, which allows the preparation of nanoparticles coated with only three lipid membranes. Moreover, the transfection activity of dendritic cells with these three-membrane nanoparticles was higher than that for nanoparticles coated with four lipid membranes. In summary, we developed novel nanoparticles coated with an odd number of lipid membranes using the novel "patchwork-packaging method" to deliver plasmid DNA into the nucleus via membrane fusion.

  11. Premature Activation of the Paramyxovirus Fusion Protein before Target Cell Attachment with Corruption of the Viral Fusion Machinery*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farzan, Shohreh F.; Palermo, Laura M.; Yokoyama, Christine C.; Orefice, Gianmarco; Fornabaio, Micaela; Sarkar, Aurijit; Kellogg, Glen E.; Greengard, Olga; Porotto, Matteo; Moscona, Anne

    2011-01-01

    Paramyxoviruses, including the childhood pathogen human parainfluenza virus type 3, enter host cells by fusion of the viral and target cell membranes. This fusion results from the concerted action of its two envelope glycoproteins, the hemagglutinin-neuraminidase (HN) and the fusion protein (F). The receptor-bound HN triggers F to undergo conformational changes that render it competent to mediate fusion of the viral and cellular membranes. We proposed that, if the fusion process could be activated prematurely before the virion reaches the target host cell, infection could be prevented. We identified a small molecule that inhibits paramyxovirus entry into target cells and prevents infection. We show here that this compound works by an interaction with HN that results in F-activation prior to receptor binding. The fusion process is thereby prematurely activated, preventing fusion of the viral membrane with target cells and precluding viral entry. This first evidence that activation of a paramyxovirus F can be specifically induced before the virus contacts its target cell suggests a new strategy with broad implications for the design of antiviral agents. PMID:21799008

  12. Mutations in the DI-DII Linker of Human Parainfluenza Virus Type 3 Fusion Protein Result in Diminished Fusion Activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenyan Xie

    Full Text Available Human parainfluenza virus type 3 (HPIV3 can cause severe respiratory tract diseases in infants and young children, but no licensed vaccines or antiviral agents are currently available for treatment. Fusing the viral and target cell membranes is a prerequisite for its entry into host cells and is directly mediated by the fusion (F protein. Although several domains of F are known to have important effects on regulating the membrane fusion activity, the roles of the DI-DII linker (residues 369-374 of the HPIV3 F protein in the fusogenicity still remains ill-defined. To facilitate our understanding of the role of this domain might play in F-induced cell-cell fusion, nine single mutations were engineered into this domain by site-directed mutagenesis. A vaccinia virus-T7 RNA polymerase transient expression system was employed to express the wild-type or mutated F proteins. These mutants were analyzed for membrane fusion activity, cell surface expression, and interaction between F and HN protein. Each of the mutated F proteins in this domain has a cell surface expression level similar to that of wild-type F. All of them resulted in a significant reduction in fusogenic activity in all steps of membrane fusion. Furthermore, all these fusion-deficient mutants reduced the amount of the HN-F complexes at the cell surface. Together, the results of our work suggest that this region has an important effect on the fusogenic activity of F.

  13. An Ion Switch Regulates Fusion of Charged Membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siepi, Evgenios; Lutz, Silke; Meyer, Sylke; Panzner, Steffen

    2011-01-01

    Here we identify the recruitment of solvent ions to lipid membranes as the dominant regulator of lipid phase behavior. Our data demonstrate that binding of counterions to charged lipids promotes the formation of lamellar membranes, whereas their absence can induce fusion. The mechanism applies to anionic and cationic liposomes, as well as the recently introduced amphoteric liposomes. In the latter, an additional pH-dependent lipid salt formation between anionic and cationic lipids must occur, as indicated by the depletion of membrane-bound ions in a zone around pH 5. Amphoteric liposomes fuse under these conditions but form lamellar structures at both lower and higher pH values. The integration of these observations into the classic lipid shape theory yielded a quantitative link between lipid and solvent composition and the physical state of the lipid assembly. The key parameter of the new model, κ(pH), describes the membrane phase behavior of charged membranes in response to their ion loading in a quantitative way. PMID:21575575

  14. Conjugation of cholesterol to HIV-1 fusion inhibitor C34 increases peptide-membrane interactions potentiating its action.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Axel Hollmann

    Full Text Available Recently, the covalent binding of a cholesterol moiety to a classical HIV-1 fusion inhibitor peptide, C34, was shown to potentiate its antiviral activity. Our purpose was to evaluate the interaction of cholesterol-conjugated and native C34 with membrane model systems and human blood cells to understand the effects of this derivatization. Lipid vesicles and monolayers with defined compositions were used as model membranes. C34-cholesterol partitions more to fluid phase membranes that mimic biological membranes. Importantly, there is a preference of the conjugate for liquid ordered membranes, rich in cholesterol and/or sphingomyelin, as observed both from partition and surface pressure studies. In human erythrocytes and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC, C34-cholesterol significantly decreases the membrane dipole potential. In PBMC, the conjugate was 14- and 115-fold more membranotropic than T-1249 and enfuvirtide, respectively. C34 or cholesterol alone did not show significant membrane activity. The enhanced interaction of C34-cholesterol with biological membranes correlates with its higher antiviral potency. Higher partitions for lipid-raft like compositions direct the drug to the receptor-rich domains where membrane fusion is likely to occur. This intermediary membrane binding step may facilitate the drug delivery to gp41 in its pre-fusion state.

  15. Efficient activation of human T cells of both CD4 and CD8 subsets by urease-deficient recombinant Mycobacterium bovis BCG that produced a heat shock protein 70-M. tuberculosis-derived major membrane protein II fusion protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukai, Tetsu; Tsukamoto, Yumiko; Maeda, Yumi; Tamura, Toshiki; Makino, Masahiko

    2014-01-01

    For the purpose of obtaining Mycobacterium bovis bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) capable of activating human naive T cells, urease-deficient BCG expressing a fusion protein composed of Mycobacterium tuberculosis-derived major membrane protein II (MMP-II) and heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) of BCG (BCG-DHTM) was produced. BCG-DHTM secreted the HSP70-MMP-II fusion protein and effectively activated human monocyte-derived dendritic cells (DCs) by inducing phenotypic changes and enhanced cytokine production. BCG-DHTM-infected DCs activated naive T cells of both CD4 and naive CD8 subsets, in an antigen (Ag)-dependent manner. The T cell activation induced by BCG-DHTM was inhibited by the pretreatment of DCs with chloroquine. The naive CD8(+) T cell activation was mediated by the transporter associated with antigen presentation (TAP) and the proteosome-dependent cytosolic cross-priming pathway. Memory CD8(+) T cells and perforin-producing effector CD8(+) T cells were efficiently produced from the naive T cell population by BCG-DHTM stimulation. Single primary infection with BCG-DHTM in C57BL/6 mice efficiently produced T cells responsive to in vitro secondary stimulation with HSP70, MMP-II, and M. tuberculosis-derived cytosolic protein and inhibited the multiplication of subsequently aerosol-challenged M. tuberculosis more efficiently than did vector control BCG. These results indicate that the introduction of MMP-II and HSP70 into urease-deficient BCG may be useful for improving BCG for control of tuberculosis.

  16. Different sets of ER-resident J-proteins regulate distinct polar nuclear-membrane fusion events in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maruyama, Daisuke; Yamamoto, Masaya; Endo, Toshiya; Nishikawa, Shuh-ichi

    2014-11-01

    Angiosperm female gametophytes contain a central cell with two polar nuclei. In many species, including Arabidopsis thaliana, the polar nuclei fuse during female gametogenesis. We previously showed that BiP, an Hsp70 in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), was essential for membrane fusion during female gametogenesis. Hsp70 function requires partner proteins for full activity. J-domain containing proteins (J-proteins) are the major Hsp70 functional partners. A. thaliana ER contains three soluble J-proteins, AtERdj3A, AtERdj3B, and AtP58(IPK). Here, we analyzed mutants of these proteins and determined that double-mutant ovules lacking AtP58(IPK) and AtERdj3A or AtERdj3B were defective in polar nuclear fusion. Electron microscopy analysis identified that polar nuclei were in close contact, but no membrane fusion occurred in mutant ovules lacking AtP58(IPK) and AtERdj3A. The polar nuclear outer membrane appeared to be connected via the ER remaining at the inner unfused membrane in mutant ovules lacking AtP58(IPK) and AtERdj3B. These results indicate that ER-resident J-proteins, AtP58(IPK)/AtERdj3A and AtP58(IPK)/AtERdj3B, function at distinct steps of polar nuclear-membrane fusion. Similar to the bip1 bip2 double mutant female gametophytes, the aterdj3a atp58(ipk) double mutant female gametophytes defective in fusion of the outer polar nuclear membrane displayed aberrant endosperm proliferation after fertilization with wild-type pollen. However, endosperm proliferated normally after fertilization of the aterdj3b atp58(ipk) double mutant female gametophytes defective in fusion of the inner membrane. Our results indicate that the polar nuclear fusion defect itself does not cause an endosperm proliferation defect.

  17. Pathway of membrane fusion with two tension-dependent energy barriers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shillcock, Julian C.

    2007-01-01

    Fusion of bilayer membranes is studied via dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulations. A new set of DPD parameters is introduced which leads to an energy barrier for flips of lipid molecules between adhering membranes. A large number of fusion events is monitored for a vesicle in contact...

  18. Trans-complex formation by proteolipid channels in the terminal phase of membrane fusion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Peters, C; Bayer, M J; Bühler, S

    2001-01-01

    +/calmodulin controls this terminal process in many intracellular fusion events. Here we identify V0, the membrane-integral sector of the vacuolar H+-ATPase, as a target of calmodulin on yeast vacuoles. Between docking and bilayer fusion, V0 sectors from opposing membranes form complexes. V0 trans...

  19. FUSION OF ARTIFICIAL MEMBRANES WITH MAMMALIAN SPERMATOZOA - SPECIFIC INVOLVEMENT OF THE EQUATORIAL SEGMENT AFTER ACROSOME REACTION

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    ARTS, EGJM; KUIKEN, J; JAGER, S; HOEKSTRA, D

    1993-01-01

    The fusogenic properties of bovine and human spermatozoa membranes were investigated, using phospholipid bilayers (liposomes) as target membranes. Fusion was monitored by following lipid mixing, as revealed by an assay based on resonance-energy transfer. In addition, fusion was visualized by fluores

  20. Enhanced Membrane Fusion in Sterol-enriched Vacuoles Bypasses the Vrp1p RequirementD⃞

    OpenAIRE

    Tedrick, Kelly; Trischuk, Tim; Lehner, Richard; Eitzen, Gary

    2004-01-01

    Organization of lipids into membrane microdomains is a vital mechanism of protein processing. Here we show that overexpression of ERG6, a gene involved in ergosterol synthesis, elevates sterol levels 1.5-fold on the vacuole membrane and enhances their homotypic fusion. The mechanism of sterol-enhanced fusion is not via more efficient sorting, but instead promotes increased kinetics of fusion subreactions. We initially isolated ERG6 as a suppressor of a vrp1Δ growth defect selective for vacuol...

  1. Enhanced Membrane Fusion in Sterol-enriched Vacuoles Bypasses the Vrp1p RequirementD⃞

    OpenAIRE

    Tedrick, Kelly; Trischuk, Tim; Lehner, Richard; Eitzen, Gary

    2004-01-01

    Organization of lipids into membrane microdomains is a vital mechanism of protein processing. Here we show that overexpression of ERG6, a gene involved in ergosterol synthesis, elevates sterol levels 1.5-fold on the vacuole membrane and enhances their homotypic fusion. The mechanism of sterol-enhanced fusion is not via more efficient sorting, but instead promotes increased kinetics of fusion subreactions. We initially isolated ERG6 as a suppressor of a vrp1Δ growth defect selective for vacuol...

  2. Inhibition of HIV-1 endocytosis allows lipid mixing at the plasma membrane, but not complete fusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de la Vega Michelle

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We recently provided evidence that HIV-1 enters HeLa-derived TZM-bl and lymphoid CEMss cells by fusing with endosomes, whereas its fusion with the plasma membrane does not proceed beyond the lipid mixing step. The mechanism of restriction of HIV-1 fusion at the cell surface and/or the factors that aid the virus entry from endosomes remain unclear. Results We examined HIV-1 fusion with a panel of target cells lines and with primary CD4+ T cells. Kinetic measurements of fusion combined with time-resolved imaging of single viruses further reinforced the notion that HIV-1 enters the cells via endocytosis and fusion with endosomes. Furthermore, we attempted to deliberately redirect virus fusion to the plasma membrane, using two experimental strategies. First, the fusion reaction was synchronized by pre-incubating the viruses with cells at reduced temperature to allow CD4 and coreceptors engagement, but not the virus uptake or fusion. Subsequent shift to a physiological temperature triggered accelerated virus uptake followed by entry from endosomes, but did not permit fusion at the cell surface. Second, blocking HIV-1 endocytosis by a small-molecule dynamin inhibitor, dynasore, resulted in transfer of viral lipids to the plasma membrane without any detectable release of the viral content into the cytosol. We also found that a higher concentration of dynasore is required to block the HIV-endosome fusion compared to virus internalization. Conclusions Our results further support the notion that HIV-1 enters disparate cell types through fusion with endosomes. The block of HIV-1 fusion with the plasma membrane at a post-lipid mixing stage shows that this membrane is not conducive to fusion pore formation and/or enlargement. The ability of dynasore to interfere with the virus-endosome fusion suggests that dynamin could be involved in two distinct steps of HIV-1 entry - endocytosis and fusion within intracellular compartments.

  3. The influenza fusion peptide promotes lipid polar head intrusion through hydrogen bonding with phosphates and N-terminal membrane insertion depth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Légaré, Sébastien; Lagüe, Patrick

    2014-09-01

    Influenza infection requires fusion between the virus envelope and a host cell endosomal membrane. The influenza hemagglutinin fusion peptide (FP) is essential to viral membrane fusion. It was recently proposed that FPs would fuse membranes by increasing lipid tail protrusion, a membrane fusion transition state. The details of how FPs induce lipid tail protrusion, however, remain to be elucidated. To decipher the molecular mechanism by which FPs promote lipid tail protrusion, we performed molecular dynamics simulations of the wild-type (WT) FP, fusogenic mutant F9A, and nonfusogenic mutant W14A in model bilayers. This article presents the peptide-lipid interaction responsible for lipid tail protrusion and a related lipid perturbation, polar head intrusion, where polar heads are sunk under the membrane surface. The backbone amides from the four N-terminal peptide residues, deeply inserted in the membrane, promoted both perturbations through H bonding with lipid phosphates. Polar head intrusion correlated with peptides N-terminal insertion depth and activity: the N-termini of WT and F9A were inserted deeper into the membrane than nonfusogenic W14A. Based on these results, we propose that FP-induced polar head intrusion would complement lipid tail protrusion in catalyzing membrane fusion by reducing repulsions between juxtaposed membranes headgroups. The presented model provides a framework for further research on membrane fusion and influenza antivirals.

  4. The hr1 and fusion peptide regions of the subgroup B avian sarcoma and leukosis virus envelope glycoprotein influence low pH-dependent membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angeline Rose Babel

    Full Text Available The avian sarcoma and leukosis virus (ASLV envelope glycoprotein (Env is activated to trigger fusion by a two-step mechanism involving receptor-priming and low pH fusion activation. In order to identify regions of ASLV Env that can regulate this process, a genetic selection method was used to identify subgroup B (ASLV-B virus-infected cells resistant to low pH-triggered fusion when incubated with cells expressing the cognate TVB receptor. The subgroup B viral Env (envB genes were then isolated from these cells and characterized by DNA sequencing. This led to identification of two frequent EnvB alterations which allowed TVB receptor-binding but altered the pH-threshold of membrane fusion activation: a 13 amino acid deletion in the host range 1 (hr1 region of the surface (SU EnvB subunit, and the A32V amino acid change within the fusion peptide of the transmembrane (TM EnvB subunit. These data indicate that these two regions of EnvB can influence the pH threshold of fusion activation.

  5. Inhibition of Sendai virus fusion with phospholipid vesicles and human erythrocyte membranes by hydrophobic peptides

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kelsey, D.R.; Flanagan, T.D.; Young, J.E.; Yeagle, P.L. (State Univ. of New York, Buffalo (USA))

    1991-06-01

    Hydrophobic di- and tripeptides which are capable of inhibiting enveloped virus infection of cells are also capable of inhibiting at least three different types of membrane fusion events. Large unilamellar vesicles (LUV) of N-methyl dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine (N-methyl DOPE), containing encapsulated 1-aminonaphthalene-3,6,8-trisulfonic acid (ANTS) and/or p-xylene bis(pyridinium bromide) (DPX), were formed by extrusion. Vesicle fusion and leakage were then monitored with the ANTS/DPX fluorescence assay. Sendai virus fusion with lipid vesicles and Sendai virus fusion with human erythrocyte membranes were measured by following the relief of fluorescence quenching of virus labeled with octadecylrhodamine B chloride (R18). This study found that the effectiveness of the peptides carbobenzoxy-L-Phe-L-Phe (Z-L-Phe-L-Phe), Z-L-Phe, Z-D-Phe, and Z-Gly-L-Phe-L-Phe in inhibiting N-methyl DOPE LUV fusion or fusion of virus with N-methyl DOPE LUV also paralleled their reported ability to block viral infectivity. Furthermore, Z-D-Phe-L-PheGly and Z-Gly-L-Phe inhibited Sendai virus fusion with human erythrocyte membranes with the same relative potency with which they inhibited vesicle-vesicle and virus-vesicle fusion. The evidence suggests a mechanism by which these peptides exert their inhibition of plaque formation by enveloped viruses. This class of inhibitors apparently acts by inhibiting fusion of the viral envelope with the target cell membrane, thereby preventing viral infection. The physical pathway by which these peptides inhibit membrane fusion was investigated. {sup 31}P nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) of proposed intermediates in the pathway for membrane fusion in LUV revealed that the potent fusion inhibitor Z-D-Phe-L-PheGly selectively altered the structure (or dynamics) of the hypothesized fusion intermediates and that the poor inhibitor Z-Gly-L-Phe did not.

  6. Effect of physical constraints on the mechanisms of membrane fusion: bolaform lipid vesicles as model systems.

    OpenAIRE

    1996-01-01

    Bolaform lipid vesicles were used to study the effect of physical constraints on membrane fusion. In these vesicles the membrane is organized in a single monolayer, because of the presence of covalent bonds in its middle plane. Therefore, the formation of fusion intermediates is subject to higher energy barriers and greater geometrical constraints than is usual in bilayer membranes. Bolaform lipids were extracted from the thermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus. These lipids can be divi...

  7. Dissection of the role of the stable signal peptide of the arenavirus envelope glycoprotein in membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messina, Emily L; York, Joanne; Nunberg, Jack H

    2012-06-01

    The arenavirus envelope glycoprotein (GPC) retains a stable signal peptide (SSP) as an essential subunit in the mature complex. The 58-amino-acid residue SSP comprises two membrane-spanning hydrophobic regions separated by a short ectodomain loop that interacts with the G2 fusion subunit to promote pH-dependent membrane fusion. Small-molecule compounds that target this unique SSP-G2 interaction prevent arenavirus entry and infection. The interaction between SSP and G2 is sensitive to the phylogenetic distance between New World (Junín) and Old World (Lassa) arenaviruses. For example, heterotypic GPC complexes are unable to support virion entry. In this report, we demonstrate that the hybrid GPC complexes are properly assembled, proteolytically cleaved, and transported to the cell surface but are specifically defective in their membrane fusion activity. Chimeric SSP constructs reveal that this incompatibility is localized to the first transmembrane segment of SSP (TM1). Genetic changes in TM1 also affect sensitivity to small-molecule fusion inhibitors, generating resistance in some cases and inhibitor dependence in others. Our studies suggest that interactions of SSP TM1 with the transmembrane domain of G2 may be important for GPC-mediated membrane fusion and its inhibition.

  8. Importin beta negatively regulates nuclear membrane fusion and nuclear pore complex assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harel, Amnon; Chan, Rene C; Lachish-Zalait, Aurelie; Zimmerman, Ella; Elbaum, Michael; Forbes, Douglass J

    2003-11-01

    Assembly of a eukaryotic nucleus involves three distinct events: membrane recruitment, fusion to form a double nuclear membrane, and nuclear pore complex (NPC) assembly. We report that importin beta negatively regulates two of these events, membrane fusion and NPC assembly. When excess importin beta is added to a full Xenopus nuclear reconstitution reaction, vesicles are recruited to chromatin but their fusion is blocked. The importin beta down-regulation of membrane fusion is Ran-GTP reversible. Indeed, excess RanGTP (RanQ69L) alone stimulates excessive membrane fusion, leading to intranuclear membrane tubules and cytoplasmic annulate lamellae-like structures. We propose that a precise balance of importin beta to Ran is required to create a correct double nuclear membrane and simultaneously to repress undesirable fusion events. Interestingly, truncated importin beta 45-462 allows membrane fusion but produces nuclei lacking any NPCs. This reveals distinct importin beta-regulation of NPC assembly. Excess full-length importin beta and beta 45-462 act similarly when added to prefused nuclear intermediates, i.e., both block NPC assembly. The importin beta NPC block, which maps downstream of GTPgammaS and BAPTA-sensitive steps in NPC assembly, is reversible by cytosol. Remarkably, it is not reversible by 25 microM RanGTP, a concentration that easily reverses fusion inhibition. This report, using a full reconstitution system and natural chromatin substrates, significantly expands the repertoire of importin beta. Its roles now encompass negative regulation of two of the major events of nuclear assembly: membrane fusion and NPC assembly.

  9. Binding and Fusion of Extracellular Vesicles to the Plasma Membrane of Their Cell Targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prada, Ilaria; Meldolesi, Jacopo

    2016-08-09

    Exosomes and ectosomes, extracellular vesicles of two types generated by all cells at multivesicular bodies and the plasma membrane, respectively, play critical roles in physiology and pathology. A key mechanism of their function, analogous for both types of vesicles, is the fusion of their membrane to the plasma membrane of specific target cells, followed by discharge to the cytoplasm of their luminal cargo containing proteins, RNAs, and DNA. Here we summarize the present knowledge about the interactions, binding and fusions of vesicles with the cell plasma membrane. The sequence initiates with dynamic interactions, during which vesicles roll over the plasma membrane, followed by the binding of specific membrane proteins to their cell receptors. Membrane binding is then converted rapidly into fusion by mechanisms analogous to those of retroviruses. Specifically, proteins of the extracellular vesicle membranes are structurally rearranged, and their hydrophobic sequences insert into the target cell plasma membrane which undergoes lipid reorganization, protein restructuring and membrane dimpling. Single fusions are not the only process of vesicle/cell interactions. Upon intracellular reassembly of their luminal cargoes, vesicles can be regenerated, released and fused horizontally to other target cells. Fusions of extracellular vesicles are relevant also for specific therapy processes, now intensely investigated.

  10. Interaction of HIV-1 fusion peptide and its mutant with lipid membrane

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2000-01-01

    HIVWT and HIVV2E represent the 23 amino acids fusion peptide of HIV-1 gp41 N terminus and its position 2 mutant (Val→Glu). We have studied the structure-function relationship of HIVWT and HIVV2E when they interact with acidic and neutral lipid membranes. The results show that HIVWT and HIVV2E have the same conformational characteristics and tendencies of conformational transition but definitely different functions: HIVWT destabilizes membrane and induces fusion by adopting predominant a-helix conformation when interacting with acidic POPG membrane, its phenylalanine residues can penetrate into the hydrophobic core of POPG bilayer; HIVV2E also adopts predominant a-helix when interacting with POPG membrane, but it cannot destabilize POPG membrane and induce fusion, the phenylalanine residues of it are located near the surface of POPG bilayer. HIVWT and HIVV2E both adopt predominant a-sheet conformation to interact with neutral POPC membrane, and cannot destabilize POPC membrane and induce fusion, the position of phenylalanine residues of both HIVWT and HIVV2E are close to the surface of POPC bilayer. These results demonstrate that the N terminal hydrophobicity of fusion peptide and the secondary structure when interacting with lipid membrane play important roles for fusion peptide exerting its function.

  11. Role of a Putative gp41 Dimerization Domain in Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Membrane Fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, J.; Deng, Y; Li, Q; Dey, A; Moore, J; Lu, M

    2010-01-01

    The entry of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) into a target cell entails a series of conformational changes in the gp41 transmembrane glycoprotein that mediates the fusion of the viral and target cell membranes. A trimer-of-hairpins structure formed by the association of two heptad repeat (HR) regions of the gp41 ectodomain has been implicated in a late step of the fusion pathway. Earlier native and intermediate states of the protein are postulated to mediate the antiviral activity of the fusion inhibitor enfuvirtide and of broadly neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (NAbs), but the details of these structures remain unknown. Here, we report the identification and crystal structure of a dimerization domain in the C-terminal ectodomain of gp41 (residues 630 to 683, or C54). Two C54 monomers associate to form an asymmetric, antiparallel coiled coil with two distinct C-terminal {alpha}-helical overhangs. This dimer structure is conferred largely by interactions within a central core that corresponds to the sequence of enfuvirtide. The mutagenic alteration of the dimer interface severely impairs the infectivity of Env-pseudotyped viruses. Moreover, the C54 structure binds tightly to both the 2F5 and 4E10 NAbs and likely represents a potential intermediate conformation of gp41. These results should enhance our understanding of the molecular basis of the gp41 fusogenic structural transitions and thereby guide rational, structure-based efforts to design new fusion inhibitors and vaccine candidates intended to induce broadly neutralizing antibodies.

  12. Crystal structure of HIV-1 gp41 including both fusion peptide and membrane proximal external regions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor Buzon

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available The HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env composed of the receptor binding domain gp120 and the fusion protein subunit gp41 catalyzes virus entry and is a major target for therapeutic intervention and for neutralizing antibodies. Env interactions with cellular receptors trigger refolding of gp41, which induces close apposition of viral and cellular membranes leading to membrane fusion. The energy released during refolding is used to overcome the kinetic barrier and drives the fusion reaction. Here, we report the crystal structure at 2 A resolution of the complete extracellular domain of gp41 lacking the fusion peptide and the cystein-linked loop. Both the fusion peptide proximal region (FPPR and the membrane proximal external region (MPER form helical extensions from the gp41 six-helical bundle core structure. The lack of regular coiled-coil interactions within FPPR and MPER splay this end of the structure apart while positioning the fusion peptide towards the outside of the six-helical bundle and exposing conserved hydrophobic MPER residues. Unexpectedly, the section of the MPER, which is juxtaposed to the transmembrane region (TMR, bends in a 90 degrees-angle sideward positioning three aromatic side chains per monomer for membrane insertion. We calculate that this structural motif might facilitate the generation of membrane curvature on the viral membrane. The presence of FPPR and MPER increases the melting temperature of gp41 significantly in comparison to the core structure of gp41. Thus, our data indicate that the ordered assembly of FPPR and MPER beyond the core contributes energy to the membrane fusion reaction. Furthermore, we provide the first structural evidence that part of MPER will be membrane inserted within trimeric gp41. We propose that this framework has important implications for membrane bending on the viral membrane, which is required for fusion and could provide a platform for epitope and lipid bilayer recognition for broadly

  13. Mechanism of membrane fusion induced by vesicular stomatitis virus G protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Irene S; Jenni, Simon; Stanifer, Megan L; Roth, Eatai; Whelan, Sean P J; van Oijen, Antoine M; Harrison, Stephen C

    2017-01-03

    The glycoproteins (G proteins) of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) and related rhabdoviruses (e.g., rabies virus) mediate both cell attachment and membrane fusion. The reversibility of their fusogenic conformational transitions differentiates them from many other low-pH-induced viral fusion proteins. We report single-virion fusion experiments, using methods developed in previous publications to probe fusion of influenza and West Nile viruses. We show that a three-stage model fits VSV single-particle fusion kinetics: (i) reversible, pH-dependent, G-protein conformational change from the known prefusion conformation to an extended, monomeric intermediate; (ii) reversible trimerization and clustering of the G-protein fusion loops, leading to an extended intermediate that inserts the fusion loops into the target-cell membrane; and (iii) folding back of a cluster of extended trimers into their postfusion conformations, bringing together the viral and cellular membranes. From simulations of the kinetic data, we conclude that the critical number of G-protein trimers required to overcome membrane resistance is 3 to 5, within a contact zone between the virus and the target membrane of 30 to 50 trimers. This sequence of conformational events is similar to those shown to describe fusion by influenza virus hemagglutinin (a "class I" fusogen) and West Nile virus envelope protein ("class II"). Our study of VSV now extends this description to "class III" viral fusion proteins, showing that reversibility of the low-pH-induced transition and architectural differences in the fusion proteins themselves do not change the basic mechanism by which they catalyze membrane fusion.

  14. Human Metapneumovirus Is Capable of Entering Cells by Fusion with Endosomal Membranes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reagan G Cox

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Human metapneumovirus (HMPV, a member of the Paramyxoviridae family, is a leading cause of lower respiratory illness. Although receptor binding is thought to initiate fusion at the plasma membrane for paramyxoviruses, the entry mechanism for HMPV is largely uncharacterized. Here we sought to determine whether HMPV initiates fusion at the plasma membrane or following internalization. To study the HMPV entry process in human bronchial epithelial (BEAS-2B cells, we used fluorescence microscopy, an R18-dequenching fusion assay, and developed a quantitative, fluorescence microscopy assay to follow virus binding, internalization, membrane fusion, and visualize the cellular site of HMPV fusion. We found that HMPV particles are internalized into human bronchial epithelial cells before fusing with endosomes. Using chemical inhibitors and RNA interference, we determined that HMPV particles are internalized via clathrin-mediated endocytosis in a dynamin-dependent manner. HMPV fusion and productive infection are promoted by RGD-binding integrin engagement, internalization, actin polymerization, and dynamin. Further, HMPV fusion is pH-independent, although infection with rare strains is modestly inhibited by RNA interference or chemical inhibition of endosomal acidification. Thus, HMPV can enter via endocytosis, but the viral fusion machinery is not triggered by low pH. Together, our results indicate that HMPV is capable of entering host cells by multiple pathways, including membrane fusion from endosomal compartments.

  15. Fusogenic activity of reconstituted newcastle disease virus envelopes: a role for the hemagglutinin-neuraminidase protein in the fusion process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cobaleda, C; Muñoz-Barroso, I; Sagrera, A; Villar, E

    2002-04-01

    Enveloped viruses, such as newcastle disease virus (NDV), make their entry into the host cell by membrane fusion. In the case of NDV, the fusion step requires both transmembrane hemagglutinin-neuraminidase (HN) and fusion (F) viral envelope glycoproteins. The HN protein should show fusion promotion activity. To date, the nature of HN-F interactions is a controversial issue. In this work, we aim to clarify the role of the HN glycoprotein in the membrane fusion step. Four types of reconstituted detergent-free NDV envelopes were used, on differing in their envelope protein contents. Fusion of the different virosomes and erythrocyte ghosts was monitored using the octadecyl rhodamine B chloride assay. Only the reconstituted envelopes having the F protein, even in the absence of HN protein, displayed residual fusion activity. Treatment of such virosomes with denaturing agents affecting the F protein abolished fusion, indicating that the fusion detected was viral protein-dependent. Interestingly, the rate of fusion in the reconstituted systems was similar to that of intact viruses in the presence of the inhibitor of HN sialidase activity 2,3-dehydro-2-deoxy-N-acetylneuraminic acid. The results show that the residual fusion activity detected in the reconstituted systems was exclusively due to F protein activity, with no contribution from the fusion promotion activity of HN protein.

  16. Mitochondrial DNA mutations provoke dominant inhibition of mitochondrial inner membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cécile Sauvanet

    Full Text Available Mitochondria are highly dynamic organelles that continuously move, fuse and divide. Mitochondrial dynamics modulate overall mitochondrial morphology and are essential for the proper function, maintenance and transmission of mitochondria and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA. We have investigated mitochondrial fusion in yeast cells with severe defects in oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS due to removal or various specific mutations of mtDNA. We find that, under fermentative conditions, OXPHOS deficient cells maintain normal levels of cellular ATP and ADP but display a reduced mitochondrial inner membrane potential. We demonstrate that, despite metabolic compensation by glycolysis, OXPHOS defects are associated to a selective inhibition of inner but not outer membrane fusion. Fusion inhibition was dominant and hampered the fusion of mutant mitochondria with wild-type mitochondria. Inhibition of inner membrane fusion was not systematically associated to changes of mitochondrial distribution and morphology, nor to changes in the isoform pattern of Mgm1, the major fusion factor of the inner membrane. However, inhibition of inner membrane fusion correlated with specific alterations of mitochondrial ultrastructure, notably with the presence of aligned and unfused inner membranes that are connected to two mitochondrial boundaries. The fusion inhibition observed upon deletion of OXPHOS related genes or upon removal of the entire mtDNA was similar to that observed upon introduction of point mutations in the mitochondrial ATP6 gene that are associated to neurogenic ataxia and retinitis pigmentosa (NARP or to maternally inherited Leigh Syndrome (MILS in humans. Our findings indicate that the consequences of mtDNA mutations may not be limited to OXPHOS defects but may also include alterations in mitochondrial fusion. Our results further imply that, in healthy cells, the dominant inhibition of fusion could mediate the exclusion of OXPHOS-deficient mitochondria from

  17. A new NFIA:RAF1 fusion activating the MAPK pathway in pilocytic astrocytoma

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yde, Christina Westmose; Sehested, Astrid; Mateu-Regué, Àngels

    2016-01-01

    Pilocytic astrocytoma (PA) is one of the most common brain cancers among children and activation of the Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) pathway is considered the hallmark. In the majority of cases, oncogenic BRAF fusions or BRAF V600E mutations are observed, while RAF1 or NF1 alterations...... are more rarely found. However, in some cases, no apparent cancer driver events can be identified. Here, we describe a novel fusion between the transcription factor nuclear factor 1A (NFIA) and Raf-1 proto-oncogene (RAF1) in a 5-year old boy with PA. The novel fusion was identified as part...... of a comprehensive genomic tumor profiling. We show that the NFIA:RAF1 fusion results in constitutive Raf1 kinase activity, leading to activation of downstream MEK1/2 cascade and increased proliferation of cancer cells. The NFIA:RAF1 fusion displayed distinct subcellular localization towards the plasma membrane...

  18. A new NFIA:RAF1 fusion activating the MAPK pathway in pilocytic astrocytoma

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yde, Christina Westmose; Sehested, Astrid; Regué, Àngels Mateu

    2016-01-01

    are more rarely found. However, in some cases, no apparent cancer driver events can be identified. Here, we describe a novel fusion between the transcription factor nuclear factor 1A (NFIA) and Raf-1 proto-oncogene (RAF1) in a 5-year old boy with PA. The novel fusion was identified as part......Pilocytic astrocytoma (PA) is one of the most common brain cancers among children and activation of the Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) pathway is considered the hallmark. In the majority of cases, oncogenic BRAF fusions or BRAF V600E mutations are observed, while RAF1 or NF1 alterations...... of a comprehensive genomic tumor profiling. We show that the NFIA:RAF1 fusion results in constitutive Raf1 kinase activity, leading to activation of downstream MEK1/2 cascade and increased proliferation of cancer cells. The NFIA:RAF1 fusion displayed distinct subcellular localization towards the plasma membrane...

  19. The Cytoplasmic Tail Domain of Epstein-Barr Virus gH Regulates Membrane Fusion Activity through Altering gH Binding to gp42 and Epithelial Cell Attachment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jia; Jardetzky, Theodore S; Longnecker, Richard

    2016-11-15

    Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is associated with infectious mononucleosis and a variety of cancers as well as lymphoproliferative disorders in immunocompromised patients. EBV mediates viral entry into epithelial and B cells using fusion machinery composed of four glycoproteins: gB, the gH/gL complex, and gp42. gB and gH/gL are required for both epithelial and B cell fusion. The specific role of gH/gL in fusion has been the most elusive among the required herpesvirus entry glycoproteins. Previous mutational studies have focused on the ectodomain of EBV gH and not on the gH cytoplasmic tail domain (CTD). In this study, we chose to examine the function of the gH CTD by making serial gH truncation mutants as well as amino acid substitution mutants to determine the importance of the gH CTD in epithelial and B cell fusion. Truncation of 8 amino acids (aa 698 to 706) of the gH CTD resulted in diminished fusion activity using a virus-free syncytium formation assay and fusion assay. The importance of the amino acid composition of the gH CTD was also investigated by amino acid substitutions that altered the hydrophobicity or hydrophilicity of the CTD. These mutations also resulted in diminished fusion activity. Interestingly, some of the gH CTD truncation mutants and hydrophilic tail substitution mutants lost the ability to bind to gp42 and epithelial cells. In summary, our studies indicate that the gH CTD is an important functional domain.

  20. The Cytoplasmic Tail Domain of Epstein-Barr Virus gH Regulates Membrane Fusion Activity through Altering gH Binding to gp42 and Epithelial Cell Attachment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jia Chen

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Epstein-Barr virus (EBV is associated with infectious mononucleosis and a variety of cancers as well as lymphoproliferative disorders in immunocompromised patients. EBV mediates viral entry into epithelial and B cells using fusion machinery composed of four glycoproteins: gB, the gH/gL complex, and gp42. gB and gH/gL are required for both epithelial and B cell fusion. The specific role of gH/gL in fusion has been the most elusive among the required herpesvirus entry glycoproteins. Previous mutational studies have focused on the ectodomain of EBV gH and not on the gH cytoplasmic tail domain (CTD. In this study, we chose to examine the function of the gH CTD by making serial gH truncation mutants as well as amino acid substitution mutants to determine the importance of the gH CTD in epithelial and B cell fusion. Truncation of 8 amino acids (aa 698 to 706 of the gH CTD resulted in diminished fusion activity using a virus-free syncytium formation assay and fusion assay. The importance of the amino acid composition of the gH CTD was also investigated by amino acid substitutions that altered the hydrophobicity or hydrophilicity of the CTD. These mutations also resulted in diminished fusion activity. Interestingly, some of the gH CTD truncation mutants and hydrophilic tail substitution mutants lost the ability to bind to gp42 and epithelial cells. In summary, our studies indicate that the gH CTD is an important functional domain.

  1. Myristoylation of the Arenavirus Envelope Glycoprotein Stable Signal Peptide Is Critical for Membrane Fusion but Dispensable for Virion Morphogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    York, Joanne

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Arenaviruses are responsible for severe and often fatal hemorrhagic disease. In the absence of effective antiviral therapies and vaccines, these viruses pose serious threats to public health and biodefense. Arenaviruses enter the host cell by fusion of the viral and endosomal membranes, a process mediated by the virus envelope glycoprotein GPC. Unlike other class I viral fusion proteins, GPC retains its stable signal peptide (SSP) as an essential third subunit in the mature complex. SSP spans the membrane twice and is myristoylated at its cytoplasmic N terminus. Mutations that abolish SSP myristoylation have been shown to reduce pH-induced cell-cell fusion activity of ectopically expressed GPC to ∼20% of wild-type levels. In order to examine the role of SSP myristoylation in the context of the intact virus, we used reverse genetics to generate Junín viruses (Candid #1 isolate) in which the critical glycine-2 residue in SSP was either replaced by alanine (G2A) or deleted (ΔG2). These mutant viruses produced smaller foci of infection in Vero cells and showed an ∼5-fold reduction in specific infectivity, commensurate with the defect in cell-cell fusion. However, virus assembly and GPC incorporation into budded virions were unaffected. Our findings suggest that the myristate moiety is cryptically disposed in the prefusion GPC complex and may function late in the fusion process to promote merging of the viral and cellular membranes. IMPORTANCE Hemorrhagic fever arenaviruses pose significant threats to public health and biodefense. Arenavirus entry into the host cell is promoted by the virus envelope glycoprotein GPC. Unlike other viral envelope glycoproteins, GPC contains a myristoylated stable signal peptide (SSP) as an essential third subunit. Myristoylation has been shown to be important for the membrane fusion activity of recombinantly expressed GPC. Here, we use reverse genetics to study the role of SSP myristoylation in the context of the intact

  2. Measuring the strength of interaction between the Ebola fusion peptide and lipid rafts: implications for membrane fusion and virus infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mônica S Freitas

    Full Text Available The Ebola fusion peptide (EBO₁₆ is a hydrophobic domain that belongs to the GP2 membrane fusion protein of the Ebola virus. It adopts a helical structure in the presence of mimetic membranes that is stabilized by the presence of an aromatic-aromatic interaction established by Trp8 and Phe12. In spite of its infectious cycle becoming better understood recently, several steps still remain unclear, a lacuna that makes it difficult to develop strategies to block infection. In order to gain insight into the mechanism of membrane fusion, we probed the structure, function and energetics of EBO₁₆ and its mutant W8A, in the absence or presence of different lipid membranes, including isolated domain-resistant membranes (DRM, a good experimental model for lipid rafts. The depletion of cholesterol from living mammalian cells reduced the ability of EBO₁₆ to induce lipid mixing. On the other hand, EBO₁₆ was structurally sensitive to interaction with lipid rafts (DRMs, but the same was not observed for W8A mutant. In agreement with these data, W8A showed a poor ability to promote membrane aggregation in comparison to EBO₁₆. Single molecule AFM experiments showed a high affinity force pattern for the interaction of EBO₁₆ and DRM, which seems to be a complex energetic event as observed by the calorimetric profile. Our study is the first to show a strong correlation between the initial step of Ebola virus infection and cholesterol, thus providing a rationale for Ebola virus proteins being co-localized with lipid-raft domains. In all, the results show how small fusion peptide sequences have evolved to adopt highly specific and strong interactions with membrane domains. Such features suggest these processes are excellent targets for therapeutic and vaccine approaches to viral diseases.

  3. Multi-layered nanoparticles for penetrating the endosome and nuclear membrane via a step-wise membrane fusion process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akita, Hidetaka; Kudo, Asako; Minoura, Arisa; Yamaguti, Masaya; Khalil, Ikramy A; Moriguchi, Rumiko; Masuda, Tomoya; Danev, Radostin; Nagayama, Kuniaki; Kogure, Kentaro; Harashima, Hideyoshi

    2009-05-01

    Efficient targeting of DNA to the nucleus is a prerequisite for effective gene therapy. The gene-delivery vehicle must penetrate through the plasma membrane, and the DNA-impermeable double-membraned nuclear envelope, and deposit its DNA cargo in a form ready for transcription. Here we introduce a concept for overcoming intracellular membrane barriers that involves step-wise membrane fusion. To achieve this, a nanotechnology was developed that creates a multi-layered nanoparticle, which we refer to as a Tetra-lamellar Multi-functional Envelope-type Nano Device (T-MEND). The critical structural elements of the T-MEND are a DNA-polycation condensed core coated with two nuclear membrane-fusogenic inner envelopes and two endosome-fusogenic outer envelopes, which are shed in stepwise fashion. A double-lamellar membrane structure is required for nuclear delivery via the stepwise fusion of double layered nuclear membrane structure. Intracellular membrane fusions to endosomes and nuclear membranes were verified by spectral imaging of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) between donor and acceptor fluorophores that had been dually labeled on the liposome surface. Coating the core with the minimum number of nucleus-fusogenic lipid envelopes (i.e., 2) is essential to facilitate transcription. As a result, the T-MEND achieves dramatic levels of transgene expression in non-dividing cells.

  4. Mitotic phosphorylation of VCIP135 blocks p97ATPase-mediated Golgi membrane fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Totsukawa, Go; Matsuo, Ayaka; Kubota, Ayano; Taguchi, Yuya; Kondo, Hisao, E-mail: hk228@med.kyushu-u.ac.jp

    2013-04-05

    Highlights: •VCIP135 is mitotically phosphorylated on Threonine-760 and Serine-767 by Cdc2. •Phosphorylated VCIP135 does not bind to p97ATPase. •The phosphorylation of VCIP135 inhibits p97ATPase-mediated Golgi membrane fusion. -- Abstract: In mammals, the Golgi apparatus is disassembled early mitosis and reassembled at the end of mitosis. For Golgi disassembly, membrane fusion needs to be blocked. Golgi biogenesis requires two distinct p97ATPase-mediated membrane fusion, the p97/p47 and p97/p37 pathways. We previously reported that p47 phosphorylation on Serine-140 and p37 phosphorylation on Serine-56 and Threonine-59 result in mitotic inhibition of the p97/p47 and the p97/p37 pathways, respectively [11,14]. In this study, we show another mechanism of mitotic inhibition of p97-mediated Golgi membrane fusion. We clarified that VCIP135, an essential factor in both p97 membrane fusion pathways, is phosphorylated on Threonine-760 and Serine-767 by Cdc2 at mitosis and that this phosphorylated VCIP135 does not bind to p97. An in vitro Golgi reassembly assay revealed that VCIP135(T760E, S767E), which mimics mitotic phosphorylation, caused no cisternal regrowth. Our results indicate that the phosphorylation of VCIP135 on Threonine-760 and Serine-767 inhibits p97-mediated Golgi membrane fusion at mitosis.

  5. The structural dynamics of the flavivirus fusion peptide-membrane interaction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ygara S Mendes

    Full Text Available Membrane fusion is a crucial step in flavivirus infections and a potential target for antiviral strategies. Lipids and proteins play cooperative roles in the fusion process, which is triggered by the acidic pH inside the endosome. This acidic environment induces many changes in glycoprotein conformation and allows the action of a highly conserved hydrophobic sequence, the fusion peptide (FP. Despite the large volume of information available on the virus-triggered fusion process, little is known regarding the mechanisms behind flavivirus-cell membrane fusion. Here, we evaluated the contribution of a natural single amino acid difference on two flavivirus FPs, FLA(G ((98DRGWGNGCGLFGK(110 and FLA(H ((98DRGWGNHCGLFGK(110, and investigated the role of the charge of the target membrane on the fusion process. We used an in silico approach to simulate the interaction of the FPs with a lipid bilayer in a complementary way and used spectroscopic approaches to collect conformation information. We found that both peptides interact with neutral and anionic micelles, and molecular dynamics (MD simulations showed the interaction of the FPs with the lipid bilayer. The participation of the indole ring of Trp appeared to be important for the anchoring of both peptides in the membrane model, as indicated by MD simulations and spectroscopic analyses. Mild differences between FLA(G and FLA(H were observed according to the pH and the charge of the target membrane model. The MD simulations of the membrane showed that both peptides adopted a bend structure, and an interaction between the aromatic residues was strongly suggested, which was also observed by circular dichroism in the presence of micelles. As the FPs of viral fusion proteins play a key role in the mechanism of viral fusion, understanding the interactions between peptides and membranes is crucial for medical science and biology and may contribute to the design of new antiviral drugs.

  6. Membrane pumping technology for helium and hydrogen isotope separation in the fusion reactor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pistunovich, V.I. [Kurchatov Inst., Moscow (Russian Federation). NFI RRC; Pigarov, A.Yu. [Kurchatov Inst., Moscow (Russian Federation). NFI RRC; Busnyuk, A.O. [Bonch-Bruyevich University, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Livshits, A.I. [Bonch-Bruyevich University, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Notkin, M.E. [Bonch-Bruyevich University, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Samartsev, A.A. [Bonch-Bruyevich University, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Borisenko, K.L. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Darmogray, V.V. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Ershov, B.D. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Filippova, L.V. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Mudugin, B.G. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Odintsov, V.N. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Saksagansky, G.L. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation); Serebrennikov, D.V. [Efremov Institute, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation)

    1995-03-01

    A gas pumping system for ITER, improved by implementation of superpermeable membranes for selective hydrogen isotope exhaust, is considered. A study of the pumping capability of a niobium membrane for a hydrogen-helium mixture has been performed.Monte Carlo simulations of gas behaviour for the experimental facility and fusion reactor have been done.The scheme of the ITER pumping system with the membranes and membrane pumping technology was considered. The conceptual study the membrane pump for the ITER was done. This work gives good prospects for the membrane pumping use in ITER to reduce the total inventory of tritium necessary for reactor operation. (orig.).

  7. Visualization of Membrane Fusion, One Particle at a Time

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Otterstrom, Jason; van Oijen, Antoine M.

    2013-01-01

    Protein-mediated fusion between phospholipid bilayers is a fundamental and necessary mechanism for many cellular processes. The short-lived nature of the intermediate states visited during fusion makes it challenging to capture precise kinetic information using classical, ensemble-averaging biophysi

  8. Vesicular PtdIns(3,4,5)P3 and Rab7 are key effectors of sea urchin zygote nuclear membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lete, Marta G; Byrne, Richard D; Alonso, Alicia; Poccia, Dominic; Larijani, Banafshé

    2017-01-15

    Regulation of nuclear envelope dynamics is an important example of the universal phenomena of membrane fusion. The signalling molecules involved in nuclear membrane fusion might also be conserved during the formation of both pronuclear and zygote nuclear envelopes in the fertilised egg. Here, we determine that class-I phosphoinositide 3-kinases (PI3Ks) are needed for in vitro nuclear envelope formation. We show that, in vivo, PtdIns(3,4,5)P3 is transiently located in vesicles around the male pronucleus at the time of nuclear envelope formation, and around male and female pronuclei before membrane fusion. We illustrate that class-I PI3K activity is also necessary for fusion of the female and male pronuclear membranes. We demonstrate, using coincidence amplified Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) monitored using fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM), a protein-lipid interaction of Rab7 GTPase and PtdIns(3,4,5)P3 that occurs during pronuclear membrane fusion to create the zygote nuclear envelope. We present a working model, which includes several molecular steps in the pathways controlling fusion of nuclear envelope membranes.

  9. Differential cargo mobilisation within Weibel-Palade bodies after transient fusion with the plasma membrane.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikolai I Kiskin

    Full Text Available Inflammatory chemokines can be selectively released from Weibel-Palade bodies (WPBs during kiss-and-run exocytosis. Such selectivity may arise from molecular size filtering by the fusion pore, however differential intra-WPB cargo re-mobilisation following fusion-induced structural changes within the WPB may also contribute to this process. To determine whether WPB cargo molecules are differentially re-mobilised, we applied FRAP to residual post-fusion WPB structures formed after transient exocytosis in which some or all of the fluorescent cargo was retained. Transient fusion resulted in WPB collapse from a rod to a spheroid shape accompanied by substantial swelling (>2 times by surface area and membrane mixing between the WPB and plasma membranes. Post-fusion WPBs supported cumulative WPB exocytosis. To quantify diffusion inside rounded organelles we developed a method of FRAP analysis based on image moments. FRAP analysis showed that von Willebrand factor-EGFP (VWF-EGFP and the VWF-propolypeptide-EGFP (Pro-EGFP were immobile in post-fusion WPBs. Because Eotaxin-3-EGFP and ssEGFP (small soluble cargo proteins were largely depleted from post-fusion WPBs, we studied these molecules in cells preincubated in the weak base NH4Cl which caused WPB alkalinisation and rounding similar to that produced by plasma membrane fusion. In these cells we found a dramatic increase in mobilities of Eotaxin-3-EGFP and ssEGFP that exceeded the resolution of our method (∼ 2.4 µm2/s mean. In contrast, the membrane mobilities of EGFP-CD63 and EGFP-Rab27A in post-fusion WPBs were unchanged, while P-selectin-EGFP acquired mobility. Our data suggest that selective re-mobilisation of chemokines during transient fusion contributes to selective chemokine secretion during transient WPB exocytosis. Selective secretion provides a mechanism to regulate intravascular inflammatory processes with reduced risk of thrombosis.

  10. Differential cargo mobilisation within Weibel-Palade bodies after transient fusion with the plasma membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiskin, Nikolai I; Babich, Victor; Knipe, Laura; Hannah, Matthew J; Carter, Tom

    2014-01-01

    Inflammatory chemokines can be selectively released from Weibel-Palade bodies (WPBs) during kiss-and-run exocytosis. Such selectivity may arise from molecular size filtering by the fusion pore, however differential intra-WPB cargo re-mobilisation following fusion-induced structural changes within the WPB may also contribute to this process. To determine whether WPB cargo molecules are differentially re-mobilised, we applied FRAP to residual post-fusion WPB structures formed after transient exocytosis in which some or all of the fluorescent cargo was retained. Transient fusion resulted in WPB collapse from a rod to a spheroid shape accompanied by substantial swelling (>2 times by surface area) and membrane mixing between the WPB and plasma membranes. Post-fusion WPBs supported cumulative WPB exocytosis. To quantify diffusion inside rounded organelles we developed a method of FRAP analysis based on image moments. FRAP analysis showed that von Willebrand factor-EGFP (VWF-EGFP) and the VWF-propolypeptide-EGFP (Pro-EGFP) were immobile in post-fusion WPBs. Because Eotaxin-3-EGFP and ssEGFP (small soluble cargo proteins) were largely depleted from post-fusion WPBs, we studied these molecules in cells preincubated in the weak base NH4Cl which caused WPB alkalinisation and rounding similar to that produced by plasma membrane fusion. In these cells we found a dramatic increase in mobilities of Eotaxin-3-EGFP and ssEGFP that exceeded the resolution of our method (∼ 2.4 µm2/s mean). In contrast, the membrane mobilities of EGFP-CD63 and EGFP-Rab27A in post-fusion WPBs were unchanged, while P-selectin-EGFP acquired mobility. Our data suggest that selective re-mobilisation of chemokines during transient fusion contributes to selective chemokine secretion during transient WPB exocytosis. Selective secretion provides a mechanism to regulate intravascular inflammatory processes with reduced risk of thrombosis.

  11. Cytosol-dependent membrane fusion in ER, nuclear envelope and nuclear pore assembly: biological implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafikova, Elvira R; Melikov, Kamran; Chernomordik, Leonid V

    2010-01-01

    Endoplasmic reticulum and nuclear envelope rearrangements after mitosis are often studied in the reconstitution system based on Xenopus egg extract. In our recent work we partially replaced the membrane vesicles in the reconstitution mix with protein-free liposomes to explore the relative contributions of cytosolic and transmembrane proteins. Here we discuss our finding that cytosolic proteins mediate fusion between membranes lacking functional transmembrane proteins and the role of membrane fusion in endoplasmic reticulum and nuclear envelope reorganization. Cytosol-dependent liposome fusion has allowed us to restore, without adding transmembrane nucleoporins, functionality of nuclear pores, their spatial distribution and chromatin decondensation in nuclei formed at insufficient amounts of membrane material and characterized by only partial decondensation of chromatin and lack of nuclear transport. Both the mechanisms and the biological implications of the discovered coupling between spatial distribution of nuclear pores, chromatin decondensation and nuclear transport are discussed.

  12. Probe transfer with and without membrane fusion in a fluorescence fusion assay

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ohki, S; Flanagan, TD; Hoekstra, D

    1998-01-01

    An analysis of the R(18) fusion assay was made during the fusion of the Sendai virus with erythrocyte ghosts. The increase in R(18) fluorescence, reflecting the interaction process, was evaluated in terms of the different processes that in principle may contribute to this increase, that is, monomeri

  13. The Fusion Loops of the Initial Prefusion Conformation of Herpes Simplex Virus 1 Fusion Protein Point Toward the Membrane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Fontana

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available All enveloped viruses, including herpesviruses, must fuse their envelope with the host membrane to deliver their genomes into target cells, making this essential step subject to interference by antibodies and drugs. Viral fusion is mediated by a viral surface protein that transits from an initial prefusion conformation to a final postfusion conformation. Strikingly, the prefusion conformation of the herpesvirus fusion protein, gB, is poorly understood. Herpes simplex virus (HSV, a model system for herpesviruses, causes diseases ranging from mild skin lesions to serious encephalitis and neonatal infections. Using cryo-electron tomography and subtomogram averaging, we have characterized the structure of the prefusion conformation and fusion intermediates of HSV-1 gB. To this end, we have set up a system that generates microvesicles displaying full-length gB on their envelope. We confirmed proper folding of gB by nondenaturing electrophoresis-Western blotting with a panel of monoclonal antibodies (MAbs covering all gB domains. To elucidate the arrangement of gB domains, we labeled them by using (i mutagenesis to insert fluorescent proteins at specific positions, (ii coexpression of gB with Fabs for a neutralizing MAb with known binding sites, and (iii incubation of gB with an antibody directed against the fusion loops. Our results show that gB starts in a compact prefusion conformation with the fusion loops pointing toward the viral membrane and suggest, for the first time, a model for gB’s conformational rearrangements during fusion. These experiments further illustrate how neutralizing antibodies can interfere with the essential gB structural transitions that mediate viral entry and therefore infectivity.

  14. Modeling electrically active viscoelastic membranes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sitikantha Roy

    Full Text Available The membrane protein prestin is native to the cochlear outer hair cell that is crucial to the ear's amplification and frequency selectivity throughout the whole acoustic frequency range. The outer hair cell exhibits interrelated dimensional changes, force generation, and electric charge transfer. Cells transfected with prestin acquire unique active properties similar to those in the native cell that have also been useful in understanding the process. Here we propose a model describing the major electromechanical features of such active membranes. The model derived from thermodynamic principles is in the form of integral relationships between the history of voltage and membrane resultants as independent variables and the charge density and strains as dependent variables. The proposed model is applied to the analysis of an active force produced by the outer hair cell in response to a harmonic electric field. Our analysis reveals the mechanism of the outer hair cell active (isometric force having an almost constant amplitude and phase up to 80 kHz. We found that the frequency-invariance of the force is a result of interplay between the electrical filtering associated with prestin and power law viscoelasticity of the surrounding membrane. Paradoxically, the membrane viscoelasticity boosts the force balancing the electrical filtering effect. We also consider various modes of electromechanical coupling in membrane with prestin associated with mechanical perturbations in the cell. We consider pressure or strains applied step-wise or at a constant rate and compute the time course of the resulting electric charge. The results obtained here are important for the analysis of electromechanical properties of membranes, cells, and biological materials as well as for a better understanding of the mechanism of hearing and the role of the protein prestin in this mechanism.

  15. The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) glycoprotein B cytoplasmic C-terminal tail domain regulates the energy requirement for EBV-induced membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jia; Zhang, Xianming; Jardetzky, Theodore S; Longnecker, Richard

    2014-10-01

    The entry of enveloped viruses into host cells is preceded by membrane fusion, which in Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is thought to be mediated by the refolding of glycoprotein B (gB) from a prefusion to a postfusion state. In our current studies, we characterized a gB C-terminal tail domain (CTD) mutant truncated at amino acid 843 (gB843). This truncation mutant is hyperfusogenic as monitored by syncytium formation and in a quantitative fusion assay and is dependent on gH/gL for fusion activity. gB843 can rescue the fusion function of other glycoprotein mutants that have null or decreased fusion activity in epithelial and B cells. In addition, gB843 requires less gp42 and gH/gL for fusion, and can function in fusion at a lower temperature than wild-type gB, indicating a lower energy requirement for fusion activation. Since a key step in fusion is the conversion of gB from a prefusion to an active postfusion state by gH/gL, gB843 may access this activated gB state more readily. Our studies indicate that the gB CTD may participate in the fusion function by maintaining gB in an inactive prefusion form prior to activation by receptor binding. Importance: Diseases resulting from Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection in humans range from the fairly benign disease infectious mononucleosis to life-threatening cancer. As an enveloped virus, EBV must fuse with a host cell membrane for entry and infection by using glycoproteins gH/gL, gB, and gp42. Among these glycoproteins, gB is thought to be the protein that executes fusion. To further characterize the function of the EBV gB cytoplasmic C-terminal tail domain (CTD) in fusion, we used a previously constructed CTD truncation mutant and studied its fusion activity in the context of other EBV glycoprotein mutants. From these studies, we find that the gB CTD regulates fusion by altering the energy requirements for the triggering of fusion mediated by gH/gL or gp42. Overall, our studies may lead to a better understanding of EBV fusion

  16. Inner/Outer nuclear membrane fusion in nuclear pore assembly: biochemical demonstration and molecular analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fichtman, Boris; Ramos, Corinne; Rasala, Beth; Harel, Amnon; Forbes, Douglass J

    2010-12-01

    Nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) are large proteinaceous channels embedded in double nuclear membranes, which carry out nucleocytoplasmic exchange. The mechanism of nuclear pore assembly involves a unique challenge, as it requires creation of a long-lived membrane-lined channel connecting the inner and outer nuclear membranes. This stabilized membrane channel has little evolutionary precedent. Here we mapped inner/outer nuclear membrane fusion in NPC assembly biochemically by using novel assembly intermediates and membrane fusion inhibitors. Incubation of a Xenopus in vitro nuclear assembly system at 14°C revealed an early pore intermediate where nucleoporin subunits POM121 and the Nup107-160 complex were organized in a punctate pattern on the inner nuclear membrane. With time, this intermediate progressed to diffusion channel formation and finally to complete nuclear pore assembly. Correct channel formation was blocked by the hemifusion inhibitor lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC), but not if a complementary-shaped lipid, oleic acid (OA), was simultaneously added, as determined with a novel fluorescent dextran-quenching assay. Importantly, recruitment of the bulk of FG nucleoporins, characteristic of mature nuclear pores, was not observed before diffusion channel formation and was prevented by LPC or OA, but not by LPC+OA. These results map the crucial inner/outer nuclear membrane fusion event of NPC assembly downstream of POM121/Nup107-160 complex interaction and upstream or at the time of FG nucleoporin recruitment.

  17. Susceptibility to virus-cell fusion at the plasma membrane is reduced through expression of HIV gp41 cytoplasmic domains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malinowsky, Katharina; Luksza, Julia; Dittmar, Matthias T

    2008-06-20

    The cytoplasmic tail of the HIV transmembrane protein plays an important role in viral infection. In this study we analyzed the role of retroviral cytoplasmic tails in modulating the cytoskeleton and interfering with virus-cell fusion. HeLaP4 cells expressing different HIV cytoplasmic tail constructs showed reduced acetylated tubulin levels whereas the cytoplasmic tail of MLV did not alter microtubule stability indicating a unique function for the lentiviral cytoplasmic tail. The effect on tubulin is mediated through the membrane proximal region of the HIV cytoplasmic tail and was independent of membrane localization. Site-directed mutagenesis identified three motifs in the HIV-2 cytoplasmic tail required to effect the reduction in acetylated tubulin. Both the YxxPhi domain and amino acids 21 to 45 of the HIV-2 cytoplasmic tail need to be present to change the level of acetylated tubulin in transfected cells. T-cells stably expressing one HIV-2 cytoplasmic tail derived construct showed also a reduction in acetylated tubulin thus confirming the importance of this effect not only for HeLaP4 and 293T cells. Challenge experiments using transiently transfected HeLaP4 cells and T cells stably expressing an HIV cytoplasmic tail construct revealed both reduced virus-cell fusion and replication of HIV-1(NL4.3) compared to control cells. In the virus-cell fusion assay only virions pseudotyped with either HIV or MLV envelopes showed reduced fusion efficiency, whereas VSV-G pseudotyped virions where not affected by the expression of HIV derived cytoplasmic tail constructs, indicating that fusion at the plasma but not endosomal membrane is affected. Overexpression of human histone-deacetylase 6 (HDAC6) and constitutively active RhoA resulted in a reduction of acetylated tubulin and reduced virus-cell fusion as significant as that observed following expression of HIV cytoplasmic tail constructs. Inhibition of HDAC6 showed a strong increase in acetylated tubulin and increase of

  18. Antibodies against analogous heptad repeat peptide HR212 of Newcastle Disease Virus inhibit virus-cell membrane fusion

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Ying; TIEN Po

    2007-01-01

    Membrane fusion is a key step in enveloped virus entry. Highly conserved heptad repeat regions (HR1 and HR2) of Newcastle disease virus (NDV) fusion protein (F) are critical functional domains for viral membrane fusion. They display different conformations in the membrane fusion states and are viewed as candidate targets for neutralizing antibody responses. We previously reported that an analog of heptad repeat peptides HR2-HR1-HR2(HR212) and HR2 could inhibit NDV induced cell-cell membrane fusion. Here, we show that HR212 can induce the production of highly potent antibody in immunized rabbits, which could recognize full length peptides of both HR1 and HR2, and inhibit NDV hemagglutination and NDV entry. These suggest that either HR212 or its antibody could be an inhibitor of virus-induced cell-cell membrane fusion.

  19. DNA Duplexes with Hydrophobic Modifications Inhibit Fusion between HIV-1 and Cell Membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Liang; Cai, Lifeng; Chen, Xueliang; Jiang, Xifeng; Chong, Huihui; Zheng, Baohua; Wang, Kun; He, Junlin; Chen, Wei; Zhang, Tao; Cheng, Maosheng; He, Yuxian

    2013-01-01

    Discovery of new drugs for the treatment of AIDS typically possessing unique structures associated with novel mechanisms of action has been of great importance due to the quick drug-resistant mutations of HIV-1 strains. The work presented in this report describes a novel class of DNA duplex-based HIV-1 fusion inhibitors. Hydrophobic groups were introduced into a DNA duplex skeleton either at one end, at both ends, or in the middle. These modified DNA duplexes inhibited fusion between HIV-1 and human cell membranes at micro- or submicromolar concentrations. Respective inhibitors adopted an aptamer pattern instead of a base-pairing interaction pattern. Structure-activity relationship studies of the respective DNA duplexes showed that the rigid and negatively charged DNA skeletons, in addition to the presence of hydrophobic groups, were crucial to the anti-HIV-1 activity of these compounds. A fluorescent resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based inhibitory assay showed that these duplex inhibitors interacted with the primary pocket in the gp41 N-terminal heptad repeat (NHR) instead of interacting with the lipid bilayers. PMID:23896466

  20. Convenient synthesis and application of versatile nucleic acid lipid membrane anchors in the assembly and fusion of liposomes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ries, Oliver; Löffler, Philipp M. G.; Vogel, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    Hydrophobic moieties like lipid membrane anchors are highly demanded modifications for nucleic acid oligomers. Membrane-anchor modified oligonucleotides are applicable in biomedicine leading to new delivery strategies as well as in biophysical investigations towards assembly and fusion of liposom...

  1. Fusion of artificial membranes with mammalian spermatozoa. Specific involvement of the equatorial segment after acrosome reaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arts, E G; Kuiken, J; Jager, S; Hoekstra, D

    1993-11-01

    The fusogenic properties of bovine and human spermatozoa membranes were investigated, using phospholipid bilayers (liposomes) as target membranes. Fusion was monitored by following lipid mixing, as revealed by an assay based on resonance-energy transfer. In addition, fusion was visualized by fluorescence microscopy, using fluorescent lipid vesicles. Cryopreserved bovine sperm fused with liposomes before induction of the acrosome reaction, fluorescence being located in essentially all spermatozoa membrane domains. Fresh bovine and human spermatozoa fused with liposomes only after the induction of the acrosome reaction, as triggered by calcium ionophore A23187 or zonae pellucidae (proteins), while the fluorescence distribution was mainly restricted to the equatorial segment (ES). However, with spermatozoa that had undergone a freeze/thawing cycle, domains other than ES also became labeled. Hence, the redistribution of the lipid probes over the entire membrane occurring during lipid mixing with cryopreserved bovine sperm is probably related to membrane perturbations caused by long-term cryopreservation. Fusion with liposomes was governed by spermatozoa factors and required the presence of acidic phospholipids like cardiolipin and phosphatidylserine in the liposomal bilayer. Incorporation of the zwitterionic lipid phosphatidylcholine in the vesicles inhibited the fusion reaction. Fusion was pH dependent. The results indicate that the ES is the primary domain of spermatozoa membranes that harbours the fusogenic capacity of sperm. Liposomes appear a valuable tool in further characterizing the properties of this domain, which has been claimed [Yanagimachi, R. (1988) in The physiology of reproduction (Knobil, E. & Neill, J., eds) pp. 135-185, Raven Press, New York] to represent the putative, initial fusion site for the oocyte.

  2. The Development of Low Activation Ferritic Steels for Fusion Application

    OpenAIRE

    Kohyama, A; Hishinuma, A.; Kohno, Y; Shiba, K; Sagara, A.

    1997-01-01

    The development of low-activation ferritic/martensitic steels is a key to the achievement of nuclear fusion as a safe, environmentally attractive and economically competitive energy source. The Japanese and the European Fusion Materials programs have put low-activation ferritic and martensitic steels R & D at the highest priority for a demonstration reactor (DEMO) and the beyond. An international collaborative test program on low-activation ferritic/martensitic steels for fusion is in progres...

  3. Kinetics of interaction of HIV fusion protein (gp41) with lipid membranes studied by real-time AFM imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bitler, Arkady, E-mail: arkady.bitler@weizmann.ac.il [Department of Chemical Research Support (Israel); Lev, Naama; Fridmann-Sirkis, Yael; Blank, Lior [Department of Biological Chemistry, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100 (Israel); Cohen, Sidney R. [Department of Chemical Research Support (Israel); Shai, Yechiel [Department of Biological Chemistry, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100 (Israel)

    2010-05-15

    One of the most important steps in the process of viral infection is a fusion between cell membrane and virus, which is mediated by the viral envelope glycoprotein. The study of activity of the glycoprotein in the post-fusion state is important for understanding the progression of infection. Here we present a first real-time kinetic study of the activity of gp41 (the viral envelope glycoprotein of human immunodeficiency virus-HIV) and its two mutants in the post-fusion state with nanometer resolution by atomic force microscopy (AFM). Tracking the changes in the phosphatidylcholine (PC) and phosphatidylcholine-phosphatidylserine (PC:PS) membrane integrity over one hour by a set of AFM images revealed differences in the interaction of the three types of protein with zwitterionic and negatively charged membranes. A quantitative analysis of the slow kinetics of hole formation in the negatively charged lipid bilayer is presented. Specifically, analysis of the rate of roughness change for the three types of proteins suggests that they exhibit different types of kinetic behavior.

  4. Fusion and fission: membrane trafficking in animal cytokinesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finger, Fern P; White, John G

    2002-03-22

    Cytokinesis is the physical act of separating daughter cells, allowing them to become separate entities. Recent studies have revealed that membrane insertion for furrowing and scission of the residual bridge is a key aspect of animal cytokinesis.

  5. Identification of a Small Molecular Anti - HIV - 1 Compound that Interferes with Formation of the Fusion - active gp41 Core

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV - 1 ) envelope glycoprotein gp41 plays a critical role in the fusion of viral and target cell membranes. The gp41 extracellular domain, which contains fusion peptide (FP), N - and C - terminal hydrophobic heptad repeats (NHR and CHR, respectively). Peptides derived from NHR and CHR regions,designated N- and C- peptides, respectively, can interact with each other to form a six - stranded coiled - coil domain, representing the fusion-active gp41 core. Our previous studies demonstrated that the C- peptides have potent inhibitory activity against HIV- 1 infection.These peptides inhibit HIV- 1 -mediated membrane fusion by binding to NHR regions for preventing the formation of fusion- active gp41 core. One of the C - peptides, T - 20, which is in the phase Ⅲ clinical trails, is expected to become the first peptide HIV fusion inhibitory drug in the near future. However, this peptide HIV fusion inhibitor lacks oral availability and is sensitive to the proteolytic digestion.Therefore, it is essential to develop small molecular non -peptide HIV fusion inhibitors having similar mechanism of action as the C- peptides. We have established an ELISA- based screening assay using a unique monoclonal antibody, NC- 1, which can specifically bind to a conformational epitope on the gp41 core domain. Using this screening assay, we have identified a small molecular anti- HIV- 1 compound,named ADS-Jl, which inhibits HIV- 1- mediated membrane fusion by blocking the interaction between the NHR and CHR regions to form the fusion - active gp41 core. This compound will be used as a lead to design and develop novel HIV fusion inhibitors as new drugs for the treatment of HIV infection and/or AIDS.

  6. Mitochondrial fusion and ERK activity regulate steroidogenic acute regulatory protein localization in mitochondria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Alejandra; Castillo, Ana Fernanda; Podestá, Ernesto J; Poderoso, Cecilia

    2014-01-01

    The rate-limiting step in the biosynthesis of steroid hormones, known as the transfer of cholesterol from the outer to the inner mitochondrial membrane, is facilitated by StAR, the Steroidogenic Acute Regulatory protein. We have described that mitochondrial ERK1/2 phosphorylates StAR and that mitochondrial fusion, through the up-regulation of a fusion protein Mitofusin 2, is essential during steroidogenesis. Here, we demonstrate that mitochondrial StAR together with mitochondrial active ERK and PKA are necessary for maximal steroid production. Phosphorylation of StAR by ERK is required for the maintenance of this protein in mitochondria, observed by means of over-expression of a StAR variant lacking the ERK phosphorylation residue. Mitochondrial fusion regulates StAR levels in mitochondria after hormone stimulation. In this study, Mitofusin 2 knockdown and mitochondrial fusion inhibition in MA-10 Leydig cells diminished StAR mRNA levels and concomitantly mitochondrial StAR protein. Together our results unveil the requirement of mitochondrial fusion in the regulation of the localization and mRNA abundance of StAR. We here establish the relevance of mitochondrial phosphorylation events in the correct localization of this key protein to exert its action in specialized cells. These discoveries highlight the importance of mitochondrial fusion and ERK phosphorylation in cholesterol transport by means of directing StAR to the outer mitochondrial membrane to achieve a large number of steroid molecules per unit of StAR.

  7. Accelerator and Fusion Research Division: Summary of activities, 1986

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1987-04-15

    This report contains a summary of activities at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory's Accelerator and Fusion Research Division for the year 1986. Topics and facilities investigated in individual papers are: 1-2 GeV Synchrotron Radiation Source, the Center for X-Ray Optics, Accelerator Operations, High-Energy Physics Technology, Heavy-Ion Fusion Accelerator Research and Magnetic Fusion Energy. Six individual papers have been indexed separately. (LSP)

  8. Photorhabdus luminescens PirAB-fusion protein exhibits both cytotoxicity and insecticidal activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yusheng; Hu, Xiaofeng; Zhang, Xu; Liu, Zhengqiang; Ding, Xuezhi; Xia, Liqiu; Hu, Shengbiao

    2014-07-01

    The binary toxin 'Photorhabdus insect-related' proteins (PirAB) produced by Photorhabdus luminescens have been reported to possess both injectable and oral activities against a range of insects. Here, PirAB-fusion protein was constructed by linking pirA and pirB genes with the flexible linker (Gly4 Ser)3 DNA encoding sequence and then efficiently expressed in Escherichia coli. To better understand the role of PirAB toxin played in the process of invasion, its cytotoxicity against insect midgut CF-203 cells was investigated. Application of purified PirAB-fusion protein as well as PirA/PirB mixture caused loss of viability of CF-203 cells after 24 h incubation. CF-203 cells treated by PirAB-fusion protein displayed morphological changes typical of apoptosis, such as cell shrinkage, cell membrane blebbing, nuclear condensation and DNA fragmentation. Moreover, PirAB-fusion protein also exhibited injectable insecticidal activity against Spodoptera exigua larvae. The bodies of S. exigua fourth-instar larvae injected with PirAB-fusion protein turned completely black. Thus, we concluded that PirAB-fusion protein possessed similar biological activity (cytotoxicity and insecticidal activity) to PirA/PirB mixture, which would enable it to be used as an efficient agent for pest control.

  9. Structural characterizations of fusion peptide analogs of influenza virus hemagglutinin. Implication of the necessity of a helix-hinge-helix motif in fusion activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Chun-Hua; Wu, Shih-Hsiung; Chang, Ding-Kwo; Chen, Chinpan

    2002-06-21

    Infection by enveloped viruses initially involves membrane fusion between viral and host cell membranes. The fusion peptide plays a crucial role in triggering this reaction. To clarify how the fusion peptide exerts this specific function, we carried out biophysical studies of three fusion peptide analogs of influenza virus hemagglutinin HA2, namely E5, G13L, and L17A. E5 exhibits an activity similar to the native fusion peptide, whereas G13L and L17A, which are two point mutants of the E5 analog, possess much less fusion activity. Our CD data showed that the conformations of these three analogs in SDS micelles are pH-dependent, with higher alpha-helical contents at acidic pH. Tryptophan fluorescence emission experiments indicated that these three analogs insert deeper into lipid bilayers at acidic pH. The three-dimensional structure of the E5 analog in SDS micelles at pH 4.0 revealed that two segments, Leu(2)-Glu(11) and Trp(14)-Ile(18), form amphipathic helical conformations, with Gly(12)-Gly(13) forming a hinge. The hydrophobic residues in the N- and C-terminal helices form a hydrophobic cluster. At neutral pH, however, the C-terminal helix of Trp(14)-Ile(18) reduces dramatically, and the hydrophobic core observed at acidic pH is severely disrupted. We suggest that the disruption of the C-terminal helix renders the E5 analog fusion-inactive at neutral pH. Furthermore, the decrease of the hinge and the reduction of fusion activity in G13L reveal the importance of the hinge in fusion activity. Also, the decrease in the C-terminal helix and the reduction of fusion activity in L17A demonstrates the importance of the C-terminal helix in fusion activity. Based on these biophysical studies, we propose a model that illustrates the structural change of the HA2 fusion peptide analog and explains how the analog interacts with the lipid bilayer at different pH values.

  10. Coarse-grained molecular dynamics study of membrane fusion: Curvature effects on free energy barriers along the stalk mechanism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kawamoto, Shuhei; Shinoda, Wataru, E-mail: w.shinoda@apchem.nagoya-u.ac.jp [Department of Applied Chemistry, Nagoya University, Furo-cho, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya, Aichi 464-8603 (Japan); Klein, Michael L. [Institute for Computational Molecular Science, Temple University, SERC Building 1925 North 12th Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19122 (United States)

    2015-12-28

    The effects of membrane curvature on the free energy barrier for membrane fusion have been investigated using coarse-grained molecular dynamics (CG-MD) simulations, assuming that fusion takes place through a stalk intermediate. Free energy barriers were estimated for stalk formation as well as for fusion pore formation using the guiding potential method. Specifically, the three different geometries of two apposed membranes were considered: vesicle–vesicle, vesicle–planar, and planar–planar membranes. The free energy barriers for the resulting fusion were found to depend importantly on the fusing membrane geometries; the lowest barrier was obtained for vesicular membranes. Further, lipid sorting was observed in fusion of the mixed membranes of dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine and dioleoyl phosphatidylethanolamine (DOPE). Specifically, DOPE molecules were found to assemble around the stalk to support the highly negative curved membrane surface. A consistent result for lipid sorting was observed when a simple continuum model (CM) was used, where the Helfrich energy and mixing entropy of the lipids were taken into account. However, the CM predicts a much higher free energy barrier than found using CG-MD. This discrepancy originates from the conformational changes of lipids, which were not considered in the CM. The results of the CG-MD simulations reveal that a large conformational change in the lipid takes place around the stalk region, which results in a reduction of free energy barriers along the stalk mechanism of membrane fusion.

  11. Coarse-grained molecular dynamics study of membrane fusion: Curvature effects on free energy barriers along the stalk mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawamoto, Shuhei; Klein, Michael L; Shinoda, Wataru

    2015-12-28

    The effects of membrane curvature on the free energy barrier for membrane fusion have been investigated using coarse-grained molecular dynamics (CG-MD) simulations, assuming that fusion takes place through a stalk intermediate. Free energy barriers were estimated for stalk formation as well as for fusion pore formation using the guiding potential method. Specifically, the three different geometries of two apposed membranes were considered: vesicle-vesicle, vesicle-planar, and planar-planar membranes. The free energy barriers for the resulting fusion were found to depend importantly on the fusing membrane geometries; the lowest barrier was obtained for vesicular membranes. Further, lipid sorting was observed in fusion of the mixed membranes of dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine and dioleoyl phosphatidylethanolamine (DOPE). Specifically, DOPE molecules were found to assemble around the stalk to support the highly negative curved membrane surface. A consistent result for lipid sorting was observed when a simple continuum model (CM) was used, where the Helfrich energy and mixing entropy of the lipids were taken into account. However, the CM predicts a much higher free energy barrier than found using CG-MD. This discrepancy originates from the conformational changes of lipids, which were not considered in the CM. The results of the CG-MD simulations reveal that a large conformational change in the lipid takes place around the stalk region, which results in a reduction of free energy barriers along the stalk mechanism of membrane fusion.

  12. Conservation of proteo-lipid nuclear membrane fusion machinery during early embryogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrne, Richard D; Veeriah, Selvaraju; Applebee, Christopher J; Larijani, Banafshé

    2014-01-01

    The fusogenic lipid diacylglycerol is essential for remodeling gamete and zygote nuclear envelopes (NE) during early embryogenesis. It is unclear whether upstream signaling molecules are likewise conserved. Here we demonstrate PLCγ and its activator SFK1, which co-operate during male pronuclear envelope formation, also promote the subsequent male and female pronuclear fusion. PLCγ and SFK1 interact directly at the fusion site leading to PLCγ activation. This is accompanied by a spatially restricted reduction of PtdIns(4,5)P2. Consequently, pronuclear fusion is blocked by PLCγ or SFK1 inhibition. These findings identify new regulators of events in the early embryo and suggest a conserved "toolkit" of fusion machinery drives successive NE fusion events during embryogenesis.

  13. NSF- and SNARE-mediated membrane fusion is required for nuclear envelope formation and completion of nuclear pore complex assembly in Xenopus laevis egg extracts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baur, Tina; Ramadan, Kristijan; Schlundt, Andreas; Kartenbeck, Jürgen; Meyer, Hemmo H

    2007-08-15

    Despite the progress in understanding nuclear envelope (NE) reformation after mitosis, it has remained unclear what drives the required membrane fusion and how exactly this is coordinated with nuclear pore complex (NPC) assembly. Here, we show that, like other intracellular fusion reactions, NE fusion in Xenopus laevis egg extracts is mediated by SNARE proteins that require activation by NSF. Antibodies against Xenopus NSF, depletion of NSF or the dominant-negative NSF(E329Q) variant specifically inhibited NE formation. Staging experiments further revealed that NSF was required until sealing of the envelope was completed. Moreover, excess exogenous alpha-SNAP that blocks SNARE function prevented membrane fusion and caused accumulation of non-flattened vesicles on the chromatin surface. Under these conditions, the nucleoporins Nup107 and gp210 were fully recruited, whereas assembly of FxFG-repeat-containing nucleoporins was blocked. Together, we define NSF- and SNARE-mediated membrane fusion events as essential steps during NE formation downstream of Nup107 recruitment, and upstream of membrane flattening and completion of NPC assembly.

  14. How Membrane-Active Peptides Get into Lipid Membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sani, Marc-Antoine; Separovic, Frances

    2016-06-21

    The structure-function relationship for a family of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) from the skin of Australian tree frogs is discussed and compared with that of peptide toxins from bee and Australian scorpion venoms. Although these membrane-active peptides induce a similar cellular fate by disrupting the lipid bilayer integrity, their lytic activity is achieved via different modes of action, which are investigated in relation to amino acid sequence, secondary structure, and membrane lipid composition. In order to better understand what structural features govern the interaction between peptides and lipid membranes, cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs), which translocate through the membrane without compromising its integrity, are also discussed. AMPs possess membrane lytic activities that are naturally designed to target the cellular membrane of pathogens or competitors. They are extremely diverse in amino acid composition and often show specificity against a particular strain of microbe. Since our antibiotic arsenal is declining precariously in the face of the rise in multiantibiotic resistance, AMPs increasingly are seen as a promising alternative. In an effort to understand their molecular mechanism, biophysical studies of a myriad of AMPs have been reported, yet no unifying mechanism has emerged, rendering difficult the rational design of drug leads. Similarly, a wide variety of cytotoxic peptides are found in venoms, the best known being melittin, yet again, predicting their activity based on a particular amino acid composition or secondary structure remains elusive. A common feature of these membrane-active peptides is their preference for the lipid environment. Indeed, they are mainly unstructured in solution and, in the presence of lipid membranes, quickly adsorb onto the surface, change their secondary structure, eventually insert into the hydrophobic core of the membrane bilayer, and finally disrupt the bilayer integrity. These steps define the molecular

  15. Recurrent BCAM-AKT2 fusion gene leads to a constitutively activated AKT2 fusion kinase in high-grade serous ovarian carcinoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kannan, Kalpana; Coarfa, Cristian; Chao, Pei-Wen; Luo, Liming; Wang, Yan; Brinegar, Amy E.; Hawkins, Shannon M.; Milosavljevic, Aleksandar; Matzuk, Martin M.; Yen, Laising

    2015-01-01

    High-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSC) is among the most lethal forms of cancer in women. Excessive genomic rearrangements, which are expected to create fusion oncogenes, are the hallmark of this cancer. Here we report a cancer-specific gene fusion between BCAM, a membrane adhesion molecule, and AKT2, a key kinase in the PI3K signaling pathway. This fusion is present in 7% of the 60 patient cancers tested, a significant frequency considering the highly heterogeneous nature of this malignancy. Further, we provide direct evidence that BCAM-AKT2 is translated into an in-frame fusion protein in the patient’s tumor. The resulting AKT2 fusion kinase is membrane-associated, constitutively phosphorylated, and activated as a functional kinase in cells. Unlike endogenous AKT2, whose activity is tightly regulated by external stimuli, BCAM-AKT2 escapes the regulation from external stimuli. Moreover, a BCAM-AKT2 fusion gene generated via chromosomal translocation using the CRISPR/Cas9 system leads to focus formation in both OVCAR8 and HEK-293T cell lines, suggesting that BCAM-AKT2 is oncogenic. Together, the results indicate that BCAM-AKT2 expression is a new mechanism of AKT2 kinase activation in HGSC. BCAM-AKT2 is the only fusion gene in HGSC that is proven to translate an aberrant yet functional kinase fusion protein with oncogenic properties. This recurrent genomic alteration is a potential therapeutic target and marker of a clinically relevant subtype for tailored therapy of HGSC. PMID:25733895

  16. Constitutively active CCR5 chemokine receptors differ in mediating HIV envelope-dependent fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Voux, Alex; Chan, Mei-Chi; Folefoc, Asongna T; Madziva, Michael T; Flanagan, Colleen A

    2013-01-01

    The CCR5 chemokine receptor is a rhodopsin-like G protein-coupled receptor that mediates the effects of pro-inflammatory β-chemokines. CCR5 is also the major co-receptor for entry of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) into human cells. G protein-coupled receptors exist in ensembles of active and inactive conformations. Active receptor conformations can be stabilized by mutations. Although binding of the HIV envelope protein to CCR5 stimulates cellular signaling, the CCR5 conformation that induces fusion of the viral membrane with cellular membranes is not known. We mutated conserved amino acids to generate constitutively active CCR5 receptors, which are stabilized in active conformations, and tested the ability of constitutively active CCR5 receptors to mediate HIV envelope-directed membrane fusion. Mutation of the Asp³·⁴⁹(¹²⁵) and Arg⁶·³²(²²⁵) residues of CCR5 did not cause constitutive activity, but Lys or Pro substitutions for Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²), in the TxP motif, caused high basal inositol phosphate signaling. Signaling did not increase in response to MIP-1β, suggesting that the Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²) mutants were fully stabilized in active conformations. The Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²)Lys mutation severely decreased cell surface CCR5 expression. Combining the Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²)Lys mutation with an Arg⁶·³²(²²⁵)Gln mutation partially reversed the decrease in expression. Mutants with Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²)Lys substitutions were poor mediators of HIV envelope-directed membrane fusion, but mutants with the Thr²·⁶⁵(⁸²)Pro substitution exhibited full co-receptor function. Our results suggest that the Thr²·⁶⁵(⁸²)Lys and Thr²·⁶⁵(⁸²)Pro mutations stabilize distinct constitutively active CCR5 conformations. Lys in position 2.65(82) stabilizes activated receptor conformations that appear to be constitutively internalized and do not induce envelope-dependent membrane fusion, whereas Pro stabilizes activated conformations

  17. Constitutively active CCR5 chemokine receptors differ in mediating HIV envelope-dependent fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alex de Voux

    Full Text Available The CCR5 chemokine receptor is a rhodopsin-like G protein-coupled receptor that mediates the effects of pro-inflammatory β-chemokines. CCR5 is also the major co-receptor for entry of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV into human cells. G protein-coupled receptors exist in ensembles of active and inactive conformations. Active receptor conformations can be stabilized by mutations. Although binding of the HIV envelope protein to CCR5 stimulates cellular signaling, the CCR5 conformation that induces fusion of the viral membrane with cellular membranes is not known. We mutated conserved amino acids to generate constitutively active CCR5 receptors, which are stabilized in active conformations, and tested the ability of constitutively active CCR5 receptors to mediate HIV envelope-directed membrane fusion. Mutation of the Asp³·⁴⁹(¹²⁵ and Arg⁶·³²(²²⁵ residues of CCR5 did not cause constitutive activity, but Lys or Pro substitutions for Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸², in the TxP motif, caused high basal inositol phosphate signaling. Signaling did not increase in response to MIP-1β, suggesting that the Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸² mutants were fully stabilized in active conformations. The Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²Lys mutation severely decreased cell surface CCR5 expression. Combining the Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²Lys mutation with an Arg⁶·³²(²²⁵Gln mutation partially reversed the decrease in expression. Mutants with Thr²·⁵⁶(⁸²Lys substitutions were poor mediators of HIV envelope-directed membrane fusion, but mutants with the Thr²·⁶⁵(⁸²Pro substitution exhibited full co-receptor function. Our results suggest that the Thr²·⁶⁵(⁸²Lys and Thr²·⁶⁵(⁸²Pro mutations stabilize distinct constitutively active CCR5 conformations. Lys in position 2.65(82 stabilizes activated receptor conformations that appear to be constitutively internalized and do not induce envelope-dependent membrane fusion, whereas Pro stabilizes activated

  18. The Vtc proteins in vacuole fusion: coupling NSF activity to V(0) trans-complex formation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Müller, Oliver; Bayer, Martin J; Peters, Christopher

    2002-01-01

    vacuole system has revealed two subsequent molecular events: trans-complex formation of V-ATPase proteolipid sectors (V(0)) and release of LMA1 from the membrane. We have now identified a hetero-oligomeric membrane integral complex of vacuolar transporter chaperone (Vtc) proteins integrating these events......, LMA1 release, but dispensible for all preceding steps, including V(0) trans-complex formation. This suggests that Vtc3p might act close to or at fusion pore opening. We propose that Vtc proteins may couple ATP-dependent NSF activity to a subset of V(0) sectors in order to activate them for V(0) trans...

  19. Nuclear inner membrane fusion facilitated by yeast Jem1p is required for spindle pole body fusion but not for the first mitotic nuclear division during yeast mating.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishikawa, Shuh-ichi; Hirata, Aiko; Endo, Toshiya

    2008-11-01

    During mating of budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, two haploid nuclei fuse to produce a diploid nucleus. The process of nuclear fusion requires two J proteins, Jem1p in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) lumen and Sec63p, which forms a complex with Sec71p and Sec72p, in the ER membrane. Zygotes of mutants defective in the functions of Jem1p or Sec63p contain two haploid nuclei that were closely apposed but failed to fuse. Here we analyzed the ultrastructure of nuclei in jem1 Delta and sec71 Delta mutant zygotes using electron microscope with the freeze-substituted fixation method. Three-dimensional reconstitution of nuclear structures from electron microscope serial sections revealed that Jem1p facilitates nuclear inner-membrane fusion and spindle pole body (SPB) fusion while Sec71p facilitates nuclear outer-membrane fusion. Two haploid SPBs that failed to fuse could duplicate, and mitotic nuclear division of the unfused haploid nuclei started in jem1 Delta and sec71 Delta mutant zygotes. This observation suggests that nuclear inner-membrane fusion is required for SPB fusion, but not for SPB duplication in the first mitotic cell division.

  20. Activation of interfacial enzymes at membrane surfaces

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mouritsen, Ole G.; Andresen, Thomas Lars; Halperin, Avi;

    2006-01-01

    A host of water-soluble enzymes are active at membrane surfaces and in association with membranes. Some of these enzymes are involved in signalling and in modification and remodelling of the membranes. A special class of enzymes, the phospholipases, and in particular secretory phospholipase A2 (s......PLA2), are only activated at the interface between water and membrane surfaces, where they lead to a break-down of the lipid molecules into lysolipids and free fatty acids. The activation is critically dependent on the physical properties of the lipid-membrane substrate. A topical review is given...

  1. Fusion

    CERN Document Server

    Mahaffey, James A

    2012-01-01

    As energy problems of the world grow, work toward fusion power continues at a greater pace than ever before. The topic of fusion is one that is often met with the most recognition and interest in the nuclear power arena. Written in clear and jargon-free prose, Fusion explores the big bang of creation to the blackout death of worn-out stars. A brief history of fusion research, beginning with the first tentative theories in the early 20th century, is also discussed, as well as the race for fusion power. This brand-new, full-color resource examines the various programs currently being funded or p

  2. Sites of glucose transporter-4 vesicle fusion with the plasma membrane correlate spatially with microtubules.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennine M Dawicki-McKenna

    Full Text Available In adipocytes, vesicles containing glucose transporter-4 (GLUT4 redistribute from intracellular stores to the cell periphery in response to insulin stimulation. Vesicles then fuse with the plasma membrane, facilitating glucose transport into the cell. To gain insight into the details of microtubule involvement, we examined the spatial organization and dynamics of microtubules in relation to GLUT4 vesicle trafficking in living 3T3-L1 adipocytes using total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF microscopy. Insulin stimulated an increase in microtubule density and curvature within the TIRF-illuminated region of the cell. The high degree of curvature and abrupt displacements of microtubules indicate that substantial forces act on microtubules. The time course of the microtubule density increase precedes that of the increase in intensity of fluorescently-tagged GLUT4 in this same region of the cell. In addition, portions of the microtubules are highly curved and are pulled closer to the cell cortex, as confirmed by Parallax microscopy. Microtubule disruption delayed and modestly reduced GLUT4 accumulation at the plasma membrane. Quantitative analysis revealed that fusions of GLUT4-containing vesicles with the plasma membrane, detected using insulin-regulated aminopeptidase with a pH-sensitive GFP tag (pHluorin, preferentially occur near microtubules. Interestingly, long-distance vesicle movement along microtubules visible at the cell surface prior to fusion does not appear to account for this proximity. We conclude that microtubules may be important in providing spatial information for GLUT4 vesicle fusion.

  3. Association of the pr Peptides with Dengue Virus at Acidic pH Blocks Membrane Fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yu, I.-M.; Holdaway, H.A.; Chipman, P.R.; Kuhn, R.J.; Rossmann, M.G.; Chen, J.; Purdue

    2010-07-27

    Flavivirus assembles into an inert particle that requires proteolytic activation by furin to enable transmission to other hosts. We previously showed that immature virus undergoes a conformational change at low pH that renders it accessible to furin (I. M. Yu, W. Zhang, H. A. Holdaway, L. Li, V. A. Kostyuchenko, P. R. Chipman, R. J. Kuhn, M. G. Rossmann, and J. Chen, Science 319:1834-1837, 2008). Here we show, using cryoelectron microscopy, that the structure of immature dengue virus at pH 6.0 is essentially the same before and after the cleavage of prM. The structure shows that after cleavage, the proteolytic product pr remains associated with the virion at acidic pH, and that furin cleavage by itself does not induce any major conformational changes. We also show by liposome cofloatation experiments that pr retention prevents membrane insertion, suggesting that pr is present on the virion in the trans-Golgi network to protect the progeny virus from fusion within the host cell.

  4. Sphingolipid and cholesterol dependence of alphavirus membrane fusion - Lack of correlation with lipid raft formation in target liposomes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Waarts, BL; Bittman, R; Wilschut, J

    2002-01-01

    Semliki Forest virus (SFV) and Sindbis virus (SIN) are enveloped viruses that infect their host cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis and subsequent fusion from within acidic endosomes. Fusion of the viral envelope requires the presence of both cholesterol and sphingolipids in the target membrane.

  5. Biophysical characterization and membrane interaction of the two fusion loops of glycoprotein B from herpes simplex type I virus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annarita Falanga

    Full Text Available The molecular mechanism of entry of herpesviruses requires a multicomponent fusion system. Cell invasion by Herpes simplex virus (HSV requires four virally encoded glycoproteins: namely gD, gB and gH/gL. The role of gB has remained elusive until recently when the crystal structure of HSV-1 gB became available and the fusion potential of gB was clearly demonstrated. Although much information on gB structure/function relationship has been gathered in recent years, the elucidation of the nature of the fine interactions between gB fusion loops and the membrane bilayer may help to understand the precise molecular mechanism behind herpesvirus-host cell membrane fusion. Here, we report the first biophysical study on the two fusion peptides of gB, with a particular focus on the effects determined by both peptides on lipid bilayers of various compositions. The two fusion loops constitute a structural subdomain wherein key hydrophobic amino acids form a ridge that is supported on both sides by charged residues. When used together the two fusion loops have the ability to significantly destabilize the target membrane bilayer, notwithstanding their low bilayer penetration when used separately. These data support the model of gB fusion loops insertion into cholesterol enriched membranes.

  6. Fusion Machinery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Jakob Balslev; Milosevic, Ira

    2015-01-01

    the vesicular SNARE VAMP2/synaptobrevin-2 and the target (plasma membrane) SNAREs SNAP25 and syntaxin-1 results in fusion and release of neurotransmitter, synchronized to the electrical activity of the cell by calcium influx and binding to synaptotagmin. Formation of the SNARE complex is tightly regulated...... and appears to start with syntaxin-1 bound to an SM (Sec1/Munc18-like) protein. Proteins of the Munc13-family are responsible for opening up syntaxin and allowing sequential binding of SNAP-25 and VAMP2/synaptobrevin-2. N- to C-terminal “zippering” of the SNARE domains leads to membrane fusion...

  7. Accelerator and Fusion Research Division: summary of activities, 1983

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1984-08-01

    The activities described in this summary of the Accelerator and Fusion Research Division are diverse, yet united by a common theme: it is our purpose to explore technologically advanced techniques for the production, acceleration, or transport of high-energy beams. These beams may be the heavy ions of interest in nuclear science, medical research, and heavy-ion inertial-confinement fusion; they may be beams of deuterium and hydrogen atoms, used to heat and confine plasmas in magnetic fusion experiments; they may be ultrahigh-energy protons for the next high-energy hadron collider; or they may be high-brilliance, highly coherent, picosecond pulses of synchrotron radiation.

  8. Phosphatidic acid phosphatase and phospholipdase A activities in plasma membranes from fusing muscle cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, C; Vagelos, P R

    1976-06-17

    Plasma membrane from fusing embryonic muscle cells were assayed for phospholipase A activity to determine if this enzyme plays a role in cell fusion. The membranes were assayed under a variety of conditions with phosphatidylcholine as the substrate and no phospholipase A activity was found. The plasma membranes did contain a phosphatidic acid phosphatase which was optimally active in the presence of Triton X-100 and glycerol. The enzyme activity was constant from pH 5.2 to 7.0, and did not require divalent cations. Over 97% of the phosphatidic acid phosphatase activity was in the particulate fraction. The subcellular distribution of the phosphatidic acid phosphatase was the same as the distributions of the plasma membrane markers, (Na+ + k+)-ATPase and the acetylcholine receptor, which indicates that this phosphatase is located exclusively in the plasma membranes. There was no detectable difference in the phosphatidic acid phosphatase activities of plasma membranes from fusing and non-fusing cells.

  9. Effects of ionic liquids on membrane fusion and lipid aggregation of egg-PC liposomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galletti, Paola; Malferrari, Danilo; Samorì, Chiara; Sartor, Giorgio; Tagliavini, Emilio

    2015-01-01

    In this study we have explored the effects of different groups of ionic liquids (ILs) on membrane fusion. The ILs used contain different head groups: N-methylimidazolium, 3-methylpyridinium and N-methylpyrrolidinium; short alkyl or ether functionalized side chains (with one or two ethoxy functionalities), paired with chloride anion. These ILs have been compared with 1-dodecyl-3-methylimidazolium bromide as example of a highly lipophilic IL. The effect of ILs on membrane fusion was investigated through pyrene steady state fluorescence probing, using the IE factor and excimer/monomer ratio (IE/IM) as parameters. The ratio between the vibronic bands of pyrene (I1/I3 ratio) has been used to monitor the effect of ILs on the aggregation properties of egg-PC liposomes. The effect of different ILs' families was evident; the pyridinium ILs induced a greater extent of fusion than pyrrolidinium and imidazolium ILs having the same side chain. Marginal effect could be attributed to different anions. ILs with short alkyl chains were usually more effective than ether functionalized ones. The aggregation behaviors of ILs having dioxygenated chains have been measured in buffer solution.

  10. The development of low activation ferritic steels for fusion application

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kohyama, A. [Kyoto Univ., Uji (Japan). Inst. of Advanced Energy; Hishinuma, A.; Kohno, Y.; Shiba, K.; Sagara, A.

    1997-03-01

    The development of low-activation ferritic/martensitic steels is a key to the achievement of nuclear fusion as a safe, environmentally attractive and economically competitive energy source. The Japanese and the European Fusion Materials programs have put low-activation ferritic and martensitic steels R and D at the highest priority for a demonstration reactor (DEMO) and the beyond. An international collaborative test program on low-activation ferritic/martensitic steels for fusion is in progress as an activity of the International Energy Agency (IEA) fusion materials working group to verify the feasibility of using ferritic/martensitic steels for fusion by an extensive test program covering the most relevant technical issues for the qualification of a material for a nuclear application. The development of a comprehensive data base on the representative industrially processed reduced-activation steels of type 8-9Cr-2WVTa is underway for providing designers a preliminary set of material data for the mechanical design of components, e.g. for DEMO relevant blanket modules. The current design status of FFHR and SSTR utilizing low-activation ferritic steels is reviewed and future prospects are defined. (author)

  11. Time Resolved Neutron Reflectivity During Supported Membrane Formation by Vesicle Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koutsioubas, Alexandros; Appavou, Marie-Sousai; Lairez, Didier

    2017-09-05

    The formation of supported lipid bilayers (SLB) on hydrophilic substrates through the method of unilamelar vesicle fusion is used routinely in a wide range of biophysical studies. In an effort to control and better understand the fusion process on the substrate, many experimental studies employing different techniques have been devoted to the elucidation of the fusion mechanism. In the present work we follow the kinetics of membrane formation using time-resolved (TR) neutron reflectivity, focussing at the structural changes near the solid/liquid interface. A clear indication of stacked bilayer structure is observed during the intermediate phase of SLB formation. Adsorbed lipid mass decrease is also measured at the final stage of the process. We have found that it is essential for the analysis of the experimental results to treat theoretically the shape of adsorbed lipid vesicles on an attractive substrate. The overall findings are discussed in relation to proposed fusion mechanisms from previous literature, while we argue that our observations favour a model involving enhanced adhesion of incoming vesicles on the edges of already formed bilayer patches.

  12. Sensor Fusion for Nuclear Proliferation Activity Monitoring

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adel Ghanem, Ph D

    2007-03-30

    The objective of Phase 1 of this STTR project is to demonstrate a Proof-of-Concept (PoC) of the Geo-Rad system that integrates a location-aware SmartTag (made by ZonTrak) and a radiation detector (developed by LLNL). It also includes the ability to transmit the collected radiation data and location information to the ZonTrak server (ZonService). The collected data is further transmitted to a central server at LLNL (the Fusion Server) to be processed in conjunction with overhead imagery to generate location estimates of nuclear proliferation and radiation sources.

  13. Lipid tail protrusion in simulations predicts fusogenic activity of influenza fusion peptide mutants and conformational models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Per Larsson

    Full Text Available Fusion peptides from influenza hemagglutinin act on membranes to promote membrane fusion, but the mechanism by which they do so remains unknown. Recent theoretical work has suggested that contact of protruding lipid tails may be an important feature of the transition state for membrane fusion. If this is so, then influenza fusion peptides would be expected to promote tail protrusion in proportion to the ability of the corresponding full-length hemagglutinin to drive lipid mixing in fusion assays. We have performed molecular dynamics simulations of influenza fusion peptides in lipid bilayers, comparing the X-31 influenza strain against a series of N-terminal mutants. As hypothesized, the probability of lipid tail protrusion correlates well with the lipid mixing rate induced by each mutant. This supports the conclusion that tail protrusion is important to the transition state for fusion. Furthermore, it suggests that tail protrusion can be used to examine how fusion peptides might interact with membranes to promote fusion. Previous models for native influenza fusion peptide structure in membranes include a kinked helix, a straight helix, and a helical hairpin. Our simulations visit each of these conformations. Thus, the free energy differences between each are likely low enough that specifics of the membrane environment and peptide construct may be sufficient to modulate the equilibrium between them. However, the kinked helix promotes lipid tail protrusion in our simulations much more strongly than the other two structures. We therefore predict that the kinked helix is the most fusogenic of these three conformations.

  14. Protoplast fusion enhances lignocellulolytic enzyme activities in Trichoderma reesei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Yu-xiao; Liu, Jia-jing; Liu, Yan; Cheng, Qi-yue; Yu, Qun; Chen, Xin; Ren, Xiao-dong

    2014-12-01

    Protoplast fusion was used to obtain a higher production of lignocellulolytic enzymes with protoplast fusion in Trichoderma reesei. The fusant strain T. reesei JL6 was obtained from protoplast fusion from T. reesei strains QM9414, MCG77, and Rut C-30. Filter paper activity of T. reesei JL6 increased by 18% compared with that of Rut C-30. β-Glucosidase, hemicellulase and pectinase activities of T. reesei JL6 were also higher. The former activity was 0.39 Uml(-1), while those of QM9414, MCG77, and Rut C-30 were 0.13, 0.11, and 0.16 Uml(-1), respectively. Pectinase and hemicellulase activities of JL6 were 5.4 and 15.6 Uml(-1), respectively, which were slightly higher than those of the parents. The effects of corn stover and wheat bran carbon sources on the cellulase production and growth curve of T. reesei JL6 were also investigated.

  15. Conformation of trimeric envelope glycoproteins: the CD4-dependent membrane fusion mechanism of HIV-1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yingliang, Wu; Hong, Yi; Zhijian, Cao; Wenxin, Li

    2007-08-01

    The HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins are assembled by the trimeric gp120s and gp41s proteins. The gp120 binds sequentially to CD4 and coreceptor for initiating virus entry. Because of noncovalent interaction and heavy glycosylation for envelope glycoproteins, it is highly difficult to determine entire envelope glycoproteins structure now. Such question extremely limits our good understanding of HIV-1 membrane fusion mechanism. Here, a novel and reasonable assembly model of trimeric gp120s and gp41s was proposed based on the conformational dynamics of trimeric gp120-gp41 complex and gp41, respectively. As for gp41, the heptad repeat sequences in the gp41 C-terminal is of enormous flexibility. On the contrary, the heptad repeat sequences in the gp41 N-terminal likely present stable three-helical bundle due to strong nonpolar interaction, and they were predicted to associate three alpha1 helixes from the non-neutralizing face of the gp120 inner domain, which is quite similar to gp41 fusion core structure. Such interaction likely leads to the formation of noncovalent gp120-gp41 complex. In the proposed assembly of trimeric gp120-gp41 complex, three gp120s present not only perfectly complementary and symmetrical distribution around the gp41, but also different flexibility degree in the different structural domains. Thus, the new model can well explain numerous experimental phenomena, present plenty of structural information, elucidate effectively HIV-1 membrane fusion mechanism, and direct to further develop vaccine and novel fusion inhibitors.

  16. Membrane cholesterol regulates lysosome-plasma membrane fusion events and modulates Trypanosoma cruzi invasion of host cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bárbara Hissa

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Trypomastigotes of Trypanosoma cruzi are able to invade several types of non-phagocytic cells through a lysosomal dependent mechanism. It has been shown that, during invasion, parasites trigger host cell lysosome exocytosis, which initially occurs at the parasite-host contact site. Acid sphingomyelinase released from lysosomes then induces endocytosis and parasite internalization. Lysosomes continue to fuse with the newly formed parasitophorous vacuole until the parasite is completely enclosed by lysosomal membrane, a process indispensable for a stable infection. Previous work has shown that host membrane cholesterol is also important for the T. cruzi invasion process in both professional (macrophages and non-professional (epithelial phagocytic cells. However, the mechanism by which cholesterol-enriched microdomains participate in this process has remained unclear. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDING: In the present work we show that cardiomyocytes treated with MβCD, a drug able to sequester cholesterol from cell membranes, leads to a 50% reduction in invasion by T. cruzi trypomastigotes, as well as a decrease in the number of recently internalized parasites co-localizing with lysosomal markers. Cholesterol depletion from host membranes was accompanied by a decrease in the labeling of host membrane lipid rafts, as well as excessive lysosome exocytic events during the earlier stages of treatment. Precocious lysosomal exocytosis in MβCD treated cells led to a change in lysosomal distribution, with a reduction in the number of these organelles at the cell periphery, and probably compromises the intracellular pool of lysosomes necessary for T. cruzi invasion. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Based on these results, we propose that cholesterol depletion leads to unregulated exocytic events, reducing lysosome availability at the cell cortex and consequently compromise T. cruzi entry into host cells. The results also suggest that two different pools of

  17. NMR structures and localization of the potential fusion peptides and the pre-transmembrane region of SARS-CoV: Implications in membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahajan, Mukesh; Bhattacharjya, Surajit

    2015-02-01

    Severe acute respiratory syndrome-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV) poses a serious public health hazard. The S2 subunit of the S glycoprotein of SARS-CoV carries out fusion between the virus and the host cells. However, the exact mechanism of the cell fusion process is not well understood. Current model suggests that a conformational transition, upon receptor recognition, of the two heptad core regions of S2 may expose the hydrophobic fusogenic peptide or fusion peptide for membrane insertion. Three regions of the S2 subunit have been proposed to be involved in cell-cell fusion. The N-terminal fusion peptide (FP, residues 770-788), an internal fusion peptide (IFP, residues 873-888) and the pre-transmembrane region (PTM, residues 1185-1202) demonstrated interactions with model lipid membranes and potentially involved in the fusion process. Here, we have determined atomic resolution structures of these three peptides in DPC detergent micelles by solution NMR. FP assumes α-helical conformation with significant distortion at the central Gly residues; enabling a close packing among sidechains of aromatic residues including W, Y and F. The 3-D structure of PMT is characterized by a helix-loop-helix with extensive aromatic interactions within the helices. IFP adopts a rather straight α-helical conformation defined by packing among sidechains of aromatic and aliphatic residues. Paramagnetic spin labeled NMR has demonstrated surface localization of PMT whereas FP and IFP inserted into the micelles. Collectively, data presented in this study will aid in understanding fusion mechanism of SARS-CoV. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. [Prokaryotic expression of S2 extracellular domain of SARS coronavirus spike protein and its fusion with Hela cell membrane].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yun; Liu, Ai-Hua; Deng, Peng; Wu, Xiang-Ling; Li, Tao; Liu, Ya-Wei; Xu, Jia; Jiang, Yong

    2009-03-01

    To construct the expression plasmid of S2 extracellular domain (S2ED) of SARS-coronavirus (SARS- Cov) spike protein (S protein) and enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) to obtain the fusion protein expressed in prokaryotic cells. S2ED based on bioinformatics prediction and EGFP sequence were amplified by PCR and inserted into pET-14b plasmid. The recombinant protein His-S2ED-EGFP was expressed in E. coli by IPTG induction. After purification by Ni-NTA agarose beads, the soluble fractions of the fusion protein were collected and identified by SDS-PAGE and Western blotting. The fusion of S2ED with Hela cell membranes was observed with fluorescent microscope. The pET-14b-S2ED-EGFP plasmid was correctly constructed and highly expressed in BL21 (DE3). When incubated with Hela cells, the purified protein could not internalize through membrane fusion. The expression plasmid containing S2ED of SARS-Cov S protein and EGFP sequence is constructed successfully. Although the recombinant protein obtained has not shown the expected fusion effect with Hela cell membrane, this work may enrich the understanding of the process of membrane fusion mediated by S2 protein and lay the foundation for future study of targeting cell transport system based on cell-specific binding peptide.

  19. Automatically Identifying Fusion Events between GLUT4 Storage Vesicles and the Plasma Membrane in TIRF Microscopy Image Sequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Wu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Quantitative analysis of the dynamic behavior about membrane-bound secretory vesicles has proven to be important in biological research. This paper proposes a novel approach to automatically identify the elusive fusion events between VAMP2-pHluorin labeled GLUT4 storage vesicles (GSVs and the plasma membrane. The differentiation is implemented to detect the initiation of fusion events by modified forward subtraction of consecutive frames in the TIRFM image sequence. Spatially connected pixels in difference images brighter than a specified adaptive threshold are grouped into a distinct fusion spot. The vesicles are located at the intensity-weighted centroid of their fusion spots. To reveal the true in vivo nature of a fusion event, 2D Gaussian fitting for the fusion spot is used to derive the intensity-weighted centroid and the spot size during the fusion process. The fusion event and its termination can be determined according to the change of spot size. The method is evaluated on real experiment data with ground truth annotated by expert cell biologists. The evaluation results show that it can achieve relatively high accuracy comparing favorably to the manual analysis, yet at a small fraction of time.

  20. Negative regulation of syntaxin4/SNAP-23/VAMP2-mediated membrane fusion by Munc18c in vitro.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fiona M Brandie

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Translocation of the facilitative glucose transporter GLUT4 from an intracellular store to the plasma membrane is responsible for the increased rate of glucose transport into fat and muscle cells in response to insulin. This represents a specialised form of regulated membrane trafficking. Intracellular membrane traffic is subject to multiple levels of regulation by conserved families of proteins in all eukaryotic cells. Notably, all intracellular fusion events require SNARE proteins and Sec1p/Munc18 family members. Fusion of GLUT4-containing vesicles with the plasma membrane of insulin-sensitive cells involves the SM protein Munc18c, and is regulated by the formation of syntaxin 4/SNAP23/VAMP2 SNARE complexes. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we have used biochemical approaches to characterise the interaction(s of Munc18c with its cognate SNARE proteins and to examine the role of Munc18c in regulating liposome fusion catalysed by syntaxin 4/SNAP23/VAMP2 SNARE complex formation. We demonstrate that Munc18c makes contacts with both t- and v-SNARE proteins of this complex, and directly inhibits bilayer fusion mediated by the syntaxin 4/SNAP23/VAMP2 SNARE complex. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Our reductionist approach has enabled us to ascertain a direct inhibitory role for Munc18c in regulating membrane fusion mediated by syntaxin 4/SNAP23/VAMP2 SNARE complex formation. It is important to note that two different SM proteins have recently been shown to stimulate liposome fusion mediated by their cognate SNARE complexes. Given the structural similarities between SM proteins, it seems unlikely that different members of this family perform opposing regulatory functions. Hence, our findings indicate that Munc18c requires a further level of regulation in order to stimulate SNARE-mediated membrane fusion.

  1. Fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, Robin

    1990-10-01

    The book abounds with fascinating anecdotes about fusion's rocky path: the spurious claim by Argentine dictator Juan Peron in 1951 that his country had built a working fusion reactor, the rush by the United States to drop secrecy and publicize its fusion work as a propaganda offensive after the Russian success with Sputnik; the fortune Penthouse magazine publisher Bob Guccione sank into an unconventional fusion device, the skepticism that met an assertion by two University of Utah chemists in 1989 that they had created "cold fusion" in a bottle. Aimed at a general audience, the book describes the scientific basis of controlled fusion--the fusing of atomic nuclei, under conditions hotter than the sun, to release energy. Using personal recollections of scientists involved, it traces the history of this little-known international race that began during the Cold War in secret laboratories in the United States, Great Britain and the Soviet Union, and evolved into an astonishingly open collaboration between East and West.

  2. AN ACTIVE VALVE WITH A CLAMPED MEMBRANE

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2009-01-01

    An active valve for use e.g. in fluidic microsystems is provided, wherein the active valve comprises a membrane having at least one flow gate, arranged between a first and a second substantially rigid element. Adjusting means provides an adjustment of the clamping force on membrane arranged between...... the first and second substantially rigid element. Hereby the flow rate through the active valve can be continuously and precisely controlled....

  3. The membrane fusion step of vaccinia virus entry is cooperatively mediated by multiple viral proteins and host cell components.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason P Laliberte

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available For many viruses, one or two proteins allow cell attachment and entry, which occurs through the plasma membrane or following endocytosis at low pH. In contrast, vaccinia virus (VACV enters cells by both neutral and low pH routes; four proteins mediate cell attachment and twelve that are associated in a membrane complex and conserved in all poxviruses are dedicated to entry. The aim of the present study was to determine the roles of cellular and viral proteins in initial stages of entry, specifically fusion of the membranes of the mature virion and cell. For analysis of the role of cellular components, we used well characterized inhibitors and measured binding of a recombinant VACV virion containing Gaussia luciferase fused to a core protein; viral and cellular membrane lipid mixing with a self-quenching fluorescent probe in the virion membrane; and core entry with a recombinant VACV expressing firefly luciferase and electron microscopy. We determined that inhibitors of tyrosine protein kinases, dynamin GTPase and actin dynamics had little effect on binding of virions to cells but impaired membrane fusion, whereas partial cholesterol depletion and inhibitors of endosomal acidification and membrane blebbing had a severe effect at the later stage of core entry. To determine the role of viral proteins, virions lacking individual membrane components were purified from cells infected with members of a panel of ten conditional-lethal inducible mutants. Each of the entry protein-deficient virions had severely reduced infectivity and except for A28, L1 and L5 greatly impaired membrane fusion. In addition, a potent neutralizing L1 monoclonal antibody blocked entry at a post-membrane lipid-mixing step. Taken together, these results suggested a 2-step entry model and implicated an unprecedented number of viral proteins and cellular components involved in signaling and actin rearrangement for initiation of virus-cell membrane fusion during poxvirus entry.

  4. Ferlins: regulators of vesicle fusion for auditory neurotransmission, receptor trafficking and membrane repair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lek, Angela; Evesson, Frances J; Sutton, R Bryan; North, Kathryn N; Cooper, Sandra T

    2012-02-01

    Ferlins are a family of multiple C2 domain proteins with emerging roles in vesicle fusion and membrane trafficking. Ferlin mutations are associated with muscular dystrophy (dysferlin) and deafness (otoferlin) in humans, and infertility in Caenorhabditis elegans (Fer-1) and Drosophila (misfire), demonstrating their importance for normal cellular functioning. Ferlins show ancient origins in eukaryotic evolution and are detected in all eukaryotic kingdoms, including unicellular eukaryotes and apicomplexian protists, suggesting origins in a common ancestor predating eukaryotic evolutionary branching. The characteristic feature of the ferlin family is their multiple tandem cytosolic C2 domains (five to seven C2 domains), the most of any protein family, and an extremely rare feature amongst eukaryotic proteins. Ferlins also bear a unique nested DysF domain and small conserved 60-70 residue ferlin-specific sequences (Fer domains). Ferlins segregate into two subtypes based on the presence (type I ferlin) or absence (type II ferlin) of the DysF and FerA domains. Ferlins have diverse tissue-specific and developmental expression patterns, with ferlin animal models united by pathologies arising from defects in vesicle fusion. Consistent with their proposed role in vesicle trafficking, ferlin interaction partners include cytoskeletal motors, other vesicle-associated trafficking proteins and transmembrane receptors or channels. Herein we summarize the research history of the ferlins, an intriguing family of structurally conserved proteins with a preserved ancestral function as regulators of vesicle fusion and receptor trafficking.

  5. Versatile membrane deformation potential of activated pacsin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shih Lin Goh

    Full Text Available Endocytosis is a fundamental process in signaling and membrane trafficking. The formation of vesicles at the plasma membrane is mediated by the G protein dynamin that catalyzes the final fission step, the actin cytoskeleton, and proteins that sense or induce membrane curvature. One such protein, the F-BAR domain-containing protein pacsin, contributes to this process and has been shown to induce a spectrum of membrane morphologies, including tubules and tube constrictions in vitro. Full-length pacsin isoform 1 (pacsin-1 has reduced activity compared to its isolated F-BAR domain, implicating an inhibitory role for its C-terminal Src homology 3 (SH3 domain. Here we show that the autoinhibitory, intramolecular interactions in pacsin-1 can be released upon binding to the entire proline-rich domain (PRD of dynamin-1, resulting in potent membrane deformation activity that is distinct from the isolated F-BAR domain. Most strikingly, we observe the generation of small, homogenous vesicles with the activated protein complex under certain experimental conditions. In addition, liposomes prepared with different methods yield distinct membrane deformation morphologies of BAR domain proteins and apparent activation barriers to pacsin-1's activity. Theoretical free energy calculations suggest bimodality of the protein-membrane system as a possible source for the different outcomes, which could account for the coexistence of energetically equivalent membrane structures induced by BAR domain-containing proteins in vitro. Taken together, our results suggest a versatile role for pacsin-1 in sculpting cellular membranes that is likely dependent both on protein structure and membrane properties.

  6. Receptor-induced thiolate couples Env activation to retrovirus fusion and infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason G Smith

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available According to current models of retrovirus infection, receptor binding to the surface subunit (SU of the envelope glycoprotein (Env triggers a conformational change in the transmembrane subunit (TM that mediates virus fusion to cell membranes. To understand how this occurs, we investigated the role of the receptor Tva in avian leukosis virus-A (ALV-A infection. We find that Tva binding induced the formation of a reactive thiolate on Cys38 (Cys38-S- in SU. Both chemical and genetic inactivation of Cys38-S- completely abrogated ALV fusion and infection. Remarkably, Cys38-S- does not mediate isomerization of the SU-TM disulfide bond and is not required for Tva-induced activation of TM, including pre-hairpin association with membranes and low pH assembly of helical bundles. These findings indicate that, contrary to current models, receptor activation of TM is not sufficient for ALV fusion and infection and that formation of a reactive thiolate is an additional receptor-dependent step.

  7. A GALA lipopeptide mediates pH- and membrane charge dependent fusion with stable giant unilamellar vesicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Etzerodt, Thomas P.; Trier, Sofie; Henriksen, Jonas R.

    2012-01-01

    ,2-diamino propanoic acid (Dap) moiety, yielding the lipopeptide dimyristoyl-Dap-GALA (DMDGALA). We have investigated DMDGALA as a component in large unilamellar vesicles (LUVs) and demonstrate pH-triggered fusion of peptide containing LUVs with stable target giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs), which were...... used as simple mimics of cell membranes. The number of fusion events was large at pH 5.0, which is a physiologically relevant pH-range for a drug delivery system....

  8. Line tension at lipid phase boundaries as driving force for HIV fusion peptide-mediated fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Sung-Tae; Kiessling, Volker; Tamm, Lukas K.

    2016-04-01

    Lipids and proteins are organized in cellular membranes in clusters, often called `lipid rafts'. Although raft-constituent ordered lipid domains are thought to be energetically unfavourable for membrane fusion, rafts have long been implicated in many biological fusion processes. For the case of HIV gp41-mediated membrane fusion, this apparent contradiction can be resolved by recognizing that the interfaces between ordered and disordered lipid domains are the predominant sites of fusion. Here we show that line tension at lipid domain boundaries contributes significant energy to drive gp41-fusion peptide-mediated fusion. This energy, which depends on the hydrophobic mismatch between ordered and disordered lipid domains, may contribute tens of kBT to fusion, that is, it is comparable to the energy required to form a lipid stalk intermediate. Line-active compounds such as vitamin E lower line tension in inhomogeneous membranes, thereby inhibit membrane fusion, and thus may be useful natural viral entry inhibitors.

  9. Mechanistic Insight into Bunyavirus-Induced Membrane Fusion from Structure-Function Analyses of the Hantavirus Envelope Glycoprotein Gc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stettner, Eva; Jeffers, Scott Allen; Pérez-Vargas, Jimena; Pehau-Arnaudet, Gerard; Tortorici, M. Alejandra; Jestin, Jean-Luc; England, Patrick; Tischler, Nicole D.; Rey, Félix A.

    2016-01-01

    Hantaviruses are zoonotic viruses transmitted to humans by persistently infected rodents, giving rise to serious outbreaks of hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) or of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS), depending on the virus, which are associated with high case fatality rates. There is only limited knowledge about the organization of the viral particles and in particular, about the hantavirus membrane fusion glycoprotein Gc, the function of which is essential for virus entry. We describe here the X-ray structures of Gc from Hantaan virus, the type species hantavirus and responsible for HFRS, both in its neutral pH, monomeric pre-fusion conformation, and in its acidic pH, trimeric post-fusion form. The structures confirm the prediction that Gc is a class II fusion protein, containing the characteristic β-sheet rich domains termed I, II and III as initially identified in the fusion proteins of arboviruses such as alpha- and flaviviruses. The structures also show a number of features of Gc that are distinct from arbovirus class II proteins. In particular, hantavirus Gc inserts residues from three different loops into the target membrane to drive fusion, as confirmed functionally by structure-guided mutagenesis on the HPS-inducing Andes virus, instead of having a single “fusion loop”. We further show that the membrane interacting region of Gc becomes structured only at acidic pH via a set of polar and electrostatic interactions. Furthermore, the structure reveals that hantavirus Gc has an additional N-terminal “tail” that is crucial in stabilizing the post-fusion trimer, accompanying the swapping of domain III in the quaternary arrangement of the trimer as compared to the standard class II fusion proteins. The mechanistic understandings derived from these data are likely to provide a unique handle for devising treatments against these human pathogens. PMID:27783711

  10. A comparison of coarse-grained and continuum models for membrane bending in lipid bilayer fusion pores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoo, Jejoong; Jackson, Meyer B; Cui, Qiang

    2013-02-19

    To establish the validity of continuum mechanics models quantitatively for the analysis of membrane remodeling processes, we compare the shape and energies of the membrane fusion pore predicted by coarse-grained (MARTINI) and continuum mechanics models. The results at these distinct levels of resolution give surprisingly consistent descriptions for the shape of the fusion pore, and the deviation between the continuum and coarse-grained models becomes notable only when the radius of curvature approaches the thickness of a monolayer. Although slow relaxation beyond microseconds is observed in different perturbative simulations, the key structural features (e.g., dimension and shape of the fusion pore near the pore center) are consistent among independent simulations. These observations provide solid support for the use of coarse-grained and continuum models in the analysis of membrane remodeling. The combined coarse-grained and continuum analysis confirms the recent prediction of continuum models that the fusion pore is a metastable structure and that its optimal shape is neither toroidal nor catenoidal. Moreover, our results help reveal a new, to our knowledge, bowing feature in which the bilayers close to the pore axis separate more from one another than those at greater distances from the pore axis; bowing helps reduce the curvature and therefore stabilizes the fusion pore structure. The spread of the bilayer deformations over distances of hundreds of nanometers and the substantial reduction in energy of fusion pore formation provided by this spread indicate that membrane fusion can be enhanced by allowing a larger area of membrane to participate and be deformed. Copyright © 2013 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Sensor fusion for active vibration isolation in precision equipment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tjepkema, D.; Dijk, van J.; Soemers, H.M.J.R.

    2012-01-01

    Sensor fusion is a promising control strategy to improve the performance of active vibration isolation systems that are used in precision equipment. Normally, those vibration isolation systems are only capable of realizing a low transmissibility. Additional objectives are to increase the damping rat

  12. Multiview fusion for activity recognition using deep neural networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kavi, Rahul; Kulathumani, Vinod; Rohit, Fnu; Kecojevic, Vlad

    2016-07-01

    Convolutional neural networks (ConvNets) coupled with long short term memory (LSTM) networks have been recently shown to be effective for video classification as they combine the automatic feature extraction capabilities of a neural network with additional memory in the temporal domain. This paper shows how multiview fusion can be applied to such a ConvNet LSTM architecture. Two different fusion techniques are presented. The system is first evaluated in the context of a driver activity recognition system using data collected in a multicamera driving simulator. These results show significant improvement in accuracy with multiview fusion and also show that deep learning performs better than a traditional approach using spatiotemporal features even without requiring any background subtraction. The system is also validated on another publicly available multiview action recognition dataset that has 12 action classes and 8 camera views.

  13. Activity assay of membrane transport proteins

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hao Xie

    2008-01-01

    Membrane transport proteins are integral membrane proteins and considered as potential drug targets. Activity assay of transport proteins is essential for developing drugs to target these proteins. Major issues related to activity assessment of transport proteins include availability of transporters,transport activity of transporters, and interactions between ligands and transporters. Researchers need to consider the physiological status of proteins (bound in lipid membranes or purified), availability and specificity of substrates, and the purpose of the activity assay (screening, identifying, or comparing substrates and inhibitors) before choosing appropriate assay strategies and techniques. Transport proteins bound in vesicular membranes can be assayed for transporting substrate across membranes by means of uptake assay or entrance counterflow assay. Alternatively, transport proteins can be assayed for interactions with ligands by using techniques such as isothermal titration calorimetry, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, or surface plasmon resonance. Other methods and techniques such as fluorometry, scintillation proximity assay, electrophysiological assay, or stopped-flow assay could also be used for activity assay of transport proteins. In this paper the major strategies and techniques for activity assessment of membrane transport proteins are reviewed.

  14. Dual Mutation Events in the Haemagglutinin-Esterase and Fusion Protein from an Infectious Salmon Anaemia Virus HPR0 Genotype Promote Viral Fusion and Activation by an Ubiquitous Host Protease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fourrier, Mickael; Lester, Katherine; Markussen, Turhan; Falk, Knut; Secombes, Christopher J; McBeath, Alastair; Collet, Bertrand

    2015-01-01

    In Infectious salmon anaemia virus (ISAV), deletions in the highly polymorphic region (HPR) in the near membrane domain of the haemagglutinin-esterase (HE) stalk, influence viral fusion. It is suspected that selected mutations in the associated Fusion (F) protein may also be important in regulating fusion activity. To better understand the underlying mechanisms involved in ISAV fusion, several mutated F proteins were generated from the Scottish Nevis and Norwegian SK779/06 HPR0. Co-transfection with constructs encoding HE and F were performed, fusion activity assessed by content mixing assay and the degree of proteolytic cleavage by western blot. Substitutions in Nevis F demonstrated that K276 was the most likely cleavage site in the protein. Furthermore, amino acid substitutions at three sites and two insertions, all slightly upstream of K276, increased fusion activity. Co-expression with HE harbouring a full-length HPR produced high fusion activities when trypsin and low pH were applied. In comparison, under normal culture conditions, groups containing a mutated HE with an HPR deletion were able to generate moderate fusion levels, while those with a full length HPR HE could not induce fusion. This suggested that HPR length may influence how the HE primes the F protein and promotes fusion activation by an ubiquitous host protease and/or facilitate subsequent post-cleavage refolding steps. Variations in fusion activity through accumulated mutations on surface glycoproteins have also been reported in other orthomyxoviruses and paramyxoviruses. This may in part contribute to the different virulence and tissue tropism reported for HPR0 and HPR deleted ISAV genotypes.

  15. Effect of Amphipathic HIV Fusion Inhibitor Peptides on POPC and POPC/Cholesterol Membrane Properties: A Molecular Simulation Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luís M. S. Loura

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available T-20 and T-1249 fusion inhibitor peptides were shown to interact with 1-palmitoyl-2-oleyl-phosphatidylcholine (POPC (liquid disordered, ld and POPC/cholesterol (1:1 (POPC/Chol (liquid ordered, lo bilayers, and they do so to different extents. Although they both possess a tryptophan-rich domain (TRD, T-20 lacks a pocket binding domain (PBD, which is present in T-1249. It has been postulated that the PBD domain enhances FI interaction with HIV gp41 protein and with model membranes. Interaction of these fusion inhibitor peptides with both the cell membrane and the viral envelope membrane is important for function, i.e., inhibition of the fusion process. We address this problem with a molecular dynamics approach focusing on lipid properties, trying to ascertain the consequences and the differences in the interaction of T-20 and T-1249 with ld and lo model membranes. T-20 and T-1249 interactions with model membranes are shown to have measurable and different effects on bilayer structural and dynamical parameters. T-1249’s adsorption to the membrane surface has generally a stronger influence in the measured parameters. The presence of both binding domains in T-1249 appears to be paramount to its stronger interaction, and is shown to have a definite importance in membrane properties upon peptide adsorption.

  16. Regulated vesicle fusion generates signaling nanoterritories that control T cell activation at the immunological synapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soares, Helena; Henriques, Ricardo; Sachse, Martin; Ventimiglia, Leandro; Alonso, Miguel A; Zimmer, Christophe; Thoulouze, Maria-Isabel; Alcover, Andrés

    2013-10-21

    How the vesicular traffic of signaling molecules contributes to T cell receptor (TCR) signal transduction at the immunological synapse remains poorly understood. In this study, we show that the protein tyrosine kinase Lck, the TCRζ subunit, and the adapter LAT traffic through distinct exocytic compartments, which are released at the immunological synapse in a differentially regulated manner. Lck vesicular release depends on MAL protein. Synaptic Lck, in turn, conditions the calcium- and synaptotagmin-7-dependent fusion of LAT and TCRζ containing vesicles. Fusion of vesicles containing TCRζ and LAT at the synaptic membrane determines not only the nanoscale organization of phosphorylated TCRζ, ZAP70, LAT, and SLP76 clusters but also the presence of phosphorylated LAT and SLP76 in interacting signaling nanoterritories. This mechanism is required for priming IL-2 and IFN-γ production and may contribute to fine-tuning T cell activation breadth in response to different stimulatory conditions.

  17. The interaction between the membrane-proximal external region and the N-trimer region of HIV- 1 gp41: Involvement in viral fusion

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Jing; LU Lu; WU Fan; CHEN Xi; NIU Ben; JIANG ShiBo; CHEN YingHua

    2009-01-01

    The membrane proximal external region (MPER) of gp41 is extremely conserved among diverse HIV-1 variants, implying its important role in viral infection. Interestingly, two of the most broadly neutralizing antibodies, 2F5 and 4E10, specifically recognize this region. Our previous study demonstrated that the antigenicity and immunogenicity of 4E10 epitope are affected by remodeling gp41 fusion core, sug-gesting that the MPER may be associated with gp41 core and involved in gp41-mediated membrane fusion. Here we measured the binding activity of 4E10 epitope peptide (D4E10P) with various gp41 core-derived peptides and found that the N-trimer region in a construct designated N-trimer-6HB in-teracted significantly with D4E10P. Using N-trimer-6HB to screen a phage library, we identified a motif (WF) located in 4E10 epitope that may play a certain role in the interaction of gp41 MPER with the N-trimer in gp41 fusion core and, we thus speculated upon the potential involvement of MPER in the usion process between viral envelope and target cell membrane.

  18. TRAIL death receptor 4 signaling via lysosome fusion and membrane raft clustering in coronary arterial endothelial cells: evidence from ASM knockout mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiang; Han, Wei-Qing; Boini, Krishna M; Xia, Min; Zhang, Yang; Li, Pin-Lan

    2013-01-01

    Tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) and its receptor, death receptor 4 (DR4), have been implicated in the development of endothelial dysfunction and atherosclerosis. However, the signaling mechanism mediating DR4 activation leading to endothelial injury remains unclear. We recently demonstrated that ceramide production via hydrolysis of membrane sphingomyelin by acid sphingomyelinase (ASM) results in membrane raft (MR) clustering and the formation of important redox signaling platforms, which play a crucial role in amplifying redox signaling in endothelial cells leading to endothelial dysfunction. The present study aims to investigate whether TRAIL triggers MR clustering via lysosome fusion and ASM activation, thereby conducting transmembrane redox signaling and changing endothelial function. Using confocal microscopy, we found that TRAIL induced MR clustering and co-localized with DR4 in coronary arterial endothelial cells (CAECs) isolated from wild-type (Smpd1 (+/+)) mice. Furthermore, TRAIL triggered ASM translocation, ceramide production, and NADPH oxidase aggregation in MR clusters in Smpd1 ( +/+ ) CAECs, whereas these observations were not found in Smpd1 (-/-) CAECs. Moreover, ASM deficiency reduced TRAIL-induced O(2) (-[Symbol: see text]) production in CAECs and abolished TRAIL-induced impairment on endothelium-dependent vasodilation in small resistance arteries. By measuring fluorescence resonance energy transfer, we found that Lamp-1 (lysosome membrane marker protein) and ganglioside G(M1) (MR marker) were trafficking together in Smpd1 (+/+) CAECs, which was absent in Smpd1 (-/-) CAECs. Consistently, fluorescence imaging of living cells with specific lysosome probes demonstrated that TRAIL-induced lysosome fusion with membrane was also absent in Smpd1 (-/-) CAECs. Taken together, these results suggest that ASM is essential for TRAIL-induced lysosomal trafficking, membrane fusion and formation of MR redox signaling platforms

  19. cBid, Bax and Bcl-xL exhibit opposite membrane remodeling activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bleicken, S; Hofhaus, G; Ugarte-Uribe, B; Schröder, R; García-Sáez, A J

    2016-01-01

    The proteins of the Bcl-2 family have a crucial role in mitochondrial outer membrane permeabilization during apoptosis and in the regulation of mitochondrial dynamics. Current models consider that Bax forms toroidal pores at mitochondria that are responsible for the release of cytochrome c, whereas Bcl-xL inhibits pore formation. However, how Bcl-2 proteins regulate mitochondrial fission and fusion remains poorly understood. By using a systematic analysis at the single vesicle level, we found that cBid, Bax and Bcl-xL are able to remodel membranes in different ways. cBid and Bax induced a reduction in vesicle size likely related to membrane tethering, budding and fission, besides membrane permeabilization. Moreover, they are preferentially located at highly curved membranes. In contrast, Bcl-xL not only counterbalanced pore formation but also membrane budding and fission. Our findings support a mechanism of action by which cBid and Bax induce or stabilize highly curved membranes including non-lamellar structures. This molecular activity reduces the energy for membrane remodeling, which is a necessary step in toroidal pore formation, as well as membrane fission and fusion, and provides a common mechanism that links the two main functions of Bcl-2 proteins. PMID:26913610

  20. Active membrane fluctuations with proton pumps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szmelter, Adam; Chen, Kejia; Granick, Steve

    2014-03-01

    We investigate nonequilibrium membrane fluctuations in giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) by reconstituting the light-activated proton pump, bacteriorhodopsin (BR). Once activated, BR is known to form oligomers in model membranes, with an unknown effect on fluctuation amplitude. By using the UV-crosslinkable lipid, 1,2-bis(10,12-tricosadiynoyl)-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine, we localize BR and prevent light-induced oligomerization. This system allows us to selectively switch on and off active fluctuations and to turn off diffusion (oligomerization) using green and UV light, respectively. We compare active membrane fluctuations with trapped and freely diffusing BR using an interferometric technique with sub nanometer and microsecond resolution. Remarkable dependence is found on whether BR is localized or freely diffusing.

  1. Early Events in Chikungunya Virus Infection-From Virus Cell Binding to Membrane Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Duijl-Richter, Mareike K S; Hoornweg, Tabitha E; Rodenhuis-Zybert, Izabela A; Smit, Jolanda M

    2015-07-07

    Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a rapidly emerging mosquito-borne alphavirus causing millions of infections in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world. CHIKV infection often leads to an acute self-limited febrile illness with debilitating myalgia and arthralgia. A potential long-term complication of CHIKV infection is severe joint pain, which can last for months to years. There are no vaccines or specific therapeutics available to prevent or treat infection. This review describes the critical steps in CHIKV cell entry. We summarize the latest studies on the virus-cell tropism, virus-receptor binding, internalization, membrane fusion and review the molecules and compounds that have been described to interfere with virus cell entry. The aim of the review is to give the reader a state-of-the-art overview on CHIKV cell entry and to provide an outlook on potential new avenues in CHIKV research.

  2. Membrane fusion inducers, chloroquine and spermidine increase lipoplex-mediated gene transfection

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wong-Baeza, Carlos; Bustos, Israel; Serna, Manuel; Tescucano, Alonso; Alcantara-Farfan, Veronica; Ibanez, Miguel [Biochemistry Department, National Polytechnic Institute (IPN), Mexico City 11340 (Mexico); Montanez, Cecilia [Department of Genetics and Molecular Biology, Centre for Research and Advanced Studies (CINVESTAV), IPN, Mexico City 07360 (Mexico); Wong, Carlos [Biochemistry Department, National Polytechnic Institute (IPN), Mexico City 11340 (Mexico); Baeza, Isabel, E-mail: ibaeza@encb.ipn.mx [Biochemistry Department, National Polytechnic Institute (IPN), Mexico City 11340 (Mexico)

    2010-05-28

    Gene transfection into mammalian cells can be achieved with viral and non-viral vectors. Non-viral vectors, such as cationic lipids that form lipoplexes with DNA, are safer and more stable than viral vectors, but their transfection efficiencies are lower. Here we describe that the simultaneous treatment with a membrane fusion inducer (chlorpromazine or procainamide) plus the lysosomotropic agent chloroquine increases lipoplex-mediated gene transfection in human (HEK293 and C-33 A) and rat (PC12) cell lines (up to 9.2-fold), as well as in situ in BALB/c mice spleens and livers (up to 6-fold); and that the polyamine spermidine increases lipoplex-mediated gene transfection and expression in cell cultures. The use of these four drugs provides a novel, safe and relatively inexpensive way to considerably increase lipoplex-mediated gene transfection efficiency.

  3. Early Events in Chikungunya Virus Infection—From Virus Cell Binding to Membrane Fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Duijl-Richter, Mareike K. S.; Hoornweg, Tabitha E.; Rodenhuis-Zybert, Izabela A.; Smit, Jolanda M.

    2015-01-01

    Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a rapidly emerging mosquito-borne alphavirus causing millions of infections in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world. CHIKV infection often leads to an acute self-limited febrile illness with debilitating myalgia and arthralgia. A potential long-term complication of CHIKV infection is severe joint pain, which can last for months to years. There are no vaccines or specific therapeutics available to prevent or treat infection. This review describes the critical steps in CHIKV cell entry. We summarize the latest studies on the virus-cell tropism, virus-receptor binding, internalization, membrane fusion and review the molecules and compounds that have been described to interfere with virus cell entry. The aim of the review is to give the reader a state-of-the-art overview on CHIKV cell entry and to provide an outlook on potential new avenues in CHIKV research. PMID:26198242

  4. Early Events in Chikungunya Virus Infection—From Virus CellBinding to Membrane Fusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mareike K. S. van Duijl-Richter

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Chikungunya virus (CHIKV is a rapidly emerging mosquito-borne alphavirus causing millions of infections in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world. CHIKV infection often leads to an acute self-limited febrile illness with debilitating myalgia and arthralgia. A potential long-term complication of CHIKV infection is severe joint pain, which can last for months to years. There are no vaccines or specific therapeutics available to prevent or treat infection. This review describes the critical steps in CHIKV cell entry. We summarize the latest studies on the virus-cell tropism, virus-receptor binding, internalization, membrane fusion and review the molecules and compounds that have been described to interfere with virus cell entry. The aim of the review is to give the reader a state-of-the-art overview on CHIKV cell entry and to provide an outlook on potential new avenues in CHIKV research.

  5. Acid phosphatase 2 (ACP2) is required for membrane fusion during influenza virus entry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jihye; Kim, Jinhee; Son, Kidong; d’Alexandry d’Orengiani, Anne-Laure Pham Humg; Min, Ji-Young

    2017-01-01

    Influenza viruses exploit host factors to successfully replicate in infected cells. Using small interfering RNA (siRNA) technology, we identified six human genes required for influenza A virus (IAV) replication. Here we focused on the role of acid phosphatase 2 (ACP2), as its knockdown showed the greatest inhibition of IAV replication. In IAV-infected cells, depletion of ACP2 resulted in a significant reduction in the expression of viral proteins and mRNA, and led to the attenuation of virus multi-cycle growth. ACP2 knockdown also decreased replication of seasonal influenza A and B viruses and avian IAVs of the H7 subtype. Interestingly, ACP2 depletion had no effect on the replication of Ebola or hepatitis C virus. Because ACP2 is known to be a lysosomal acid phosphatase, we assessed the role of ACP2 in influenza virus entry. While neither binding of the viral particle to the cell surface nor endosomal acidification was affected in ACP2-depleted cells, fusion of the endosomal and viral membranes was impaired. As a result, downstream steps in viral entry were blocked, including nucleocapsid uncoating and nuclear import of viral ribonucleoproteins. Our results established ACP2 as a necessary host factor for regulating the fusion step of influenza virus entry. PMID:28272419

  6. New chemical method of viral inactivation for vaccine development based on membrane fusion inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stauffer, Fausto; De Miranda, Joari; Schechter, Marcos C; Queiroz, Fernando A; Santos, Nathalia O; Alves, Ada M B; Da Poian, Andrea T

    2007-11-14

    Membrane fusion is an essential step in the entry of enveloped viruses into their host cells. This process is triggered by conformational changes in viral surface glycoproteins. We have demonstrated previously that modification of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) with diethylpyrocarbonate (DEPC) abolished the conformational changes on VSV glycoprotein and the fusion reaction induced by the virus. Moreover, we observed that viral treatment with DEPC inactivates the virus, preserving the conformational integrity of its surface proteins. In the present work, we evaluated the potential use of DEPC as a viral inactivating chemical agent for the development of useful vaccines. Pathogenicity and viral replication in Balb/c mice were abolished by viral treatment with 0.5mM DEPC. In addition, antibodies elicited in mice after intraperitoneal immunization with DEPC-inactivated VSV mixed with adjuvants were able to recognize and neutralize the native virus and efficiently protected animals against the challenge with lethal doses of VSV. These results together suggest that viral inactivation with DEPC seems to be a suitable method for the development of safe vaccines.

  7. A protein G fragment from the salmonid viral hemorrhagic septicemia rhabdovirus induces cell-to-cell fusion and membrane phosphatidylserine translocation at low pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estepa, A M; Rocha, A I; Mas, V; Pérez, L; Encinar, J A; Nuñez, E; Fernandez, A; Gonzalez Ros, J M; Gavilanes, F; Coll, J M

    2001-12-07

    The fusion-related properties of segments p9, p3, p4, and p9 + p2 surrounding the p2 phospholipid-binding domain of the protein G (pG) of the salmonid rhabdovirus of viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS) (Nuñez, E., Fernandez, A. M., Estepa, A., Gonzalez-Ros, J. M., Gavilanes, F., and Coll, J. M. (1998) Virology 243, 322-330; Estepa, A., and Coll, J. M. (1996) Virology 216, 60-70), have been studied at neutral and fusion (low) pH values by using its derived peptides. Cell-to-cell fusion, translocation of phosphatidylserine, and inhibition of fusion of pG-transfected cells defined the p9 + p2 (fragment 11, sequence 56-110) as a fragment with higher specific activity for anionic phospholipid aggregation than the previously reported p2. While fragment 11, p2, and p3 showed interactions with anionic phospholipids, p9 and p4 showed no interactions with any phospholipids. When added to a cell monolayer model at low pH, fragment 11 induced pH-dependent cell-to-cell fusion and translocated phosphatidylserine from the inner to the outer leaflet of the membrane. At low pH and in the presence of anionic phospholipids, fragment 11 showed more than 80% beta-sheet conformation (IR and CD spectroscopies). Finally, anti-fragment 11 antibodies inhibited low pH-dependent pG-transfected cell-to-cell fusion. All of the data support the conclusion that fragment 11 is a primary determinant of some of the viral cell fusion events in VHSV.

  8. Active membrane cholesterol as a physiological effector.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, Yvonne; Steck, Theodore L

    2016-09-01

    Sterols associate preferentially with plasma membrane sphingolipids and saturated phospholipids to form stoichiometric complexes. Cholesterol in molar excess of the capacity of these polar bilayer lipids has a high accessibility and fugacity; we call this fraction active cholesterol. This review first considers how active cholesterol serves as an upstream regulator of cellular sterol homeostasis. The mechanism appears to utilize the redistribution of active cholesterol down its diffusional gradient to the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria, where it binds multiple effectors and directs their feedback activity. We have also reviewed a broad literature in search of a role for active cholesterol (as opposed to bulk cholesterol or lipid domains such as rafts) in the activity of diverse membrane proteins. Several systems provide such evidence, implicating, in particular, caveolin-1, various kinds of ABC-type cholesterol transporters, solute transporters, receptors and ion channels. We suggest that this larger role for active cholesterol warrants close attention and can be tested easily.

  9. Joint research center activity in thermonuclear fusion technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Casini, G.; Rocco, P. (Commission of the European Communities, Ispra (Italy). Joint Research Centre)

    1984-04-01

    A review of the activities in progress in the field of thermonuclear fusion technology at the Joint Research Centre of the European Communities is presented. The research areas are: (I) reactor studies, including conceptual design studies of experimental Tokamak reactors (INTOR/NET) and safety analyses; (II) experimental investigation on first wall and blanket materials and components. Emphasis has been given to those topics which are not reported in detail in the following articles of the issue.

  10. DNA release from lipoplexes by anionic lipids: correlation with lipid mesomorphism, interfacial curvature, and membrane fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tarahovsky, Yury S.; Koynova, Rumiana; MacDonald, Robert C. (Northwestern)

    2010-01-18

    DNA release from lipoplexes is an essential step during lipofection and is probably a result of charge neutralization by cellular anionic lipids. As a model system to test this possibility, fluorescence resonance energy transfer between DNA and lipid covalently labeled with Cy3 and BODIPY, respectively, was used to monitor the release of DNA from lipid surfaces induced by anionic liposomes. The separation of DNA from lipid measured this way was considerably slower and less complete than that estimated with noncovalently labeled DNA, and depends on the lipid composition of both lipoplexes and anionic liposomes. This result was confirmed by centrifugal separation of released DNA and lipid. X-ray diffraction revealed a clear correlation of the DNA release capacity of the anionic lipids with the interfacial curvature of the mesomorphic structures developed when the anionic and cationic liposomes were mixed. DNA release also correlated with the rate of fusion of anionic liposomes with lipoplexes. It is concluded that the tendency to fuse and the phase preference of the mixed lipid membranes are key factors for the rate and extent of DNA release. The approach presented emphasizes the importance of the lipid composition of both lipoplexes and target membranes and suggests optimal transfection may be obtained by tailoring lipoplex composition to the lipid composition of target cells.

  11. Sensor fusion methods for high performance active vibration isolation systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collette, C.; Matichard, F.

    2015-04-01

    Sensor noise often limits the performance of active vibration isolation systems. Inertial sensors used in such systems can be selected through a wide variety of instrument noise and size characteristics. However, the most sensitive instruments are often the biggest and the heaviest. Consequently, high-performance active isolators sometimes embed many tens of kilograms in instrumentation. The weight and size of instrumentation can add unwanted constraint on the design. It tends to lower the structures natural frequencies and reduces the collocation between sensors and actuators. Both effects tend to reduce feedback control performance and stability. This paper discusses sensor fusion techniques that can be used in order to increase the control bandwidth (and/or the stability). For this, the low noise inertial instrument signal dominates the fusion at low frequency to provide vibration isolation. Other types of sensors (relative motion, smaller but noisier inertial, or force sensors) are used at higher frequencies to increase stability. Several sensor fusion configurations are studied. The paper shows the improvement that can be expected for several case studies including a rigid equipment, a flexible equipment, and a flexible equipment mounted on a flexible support structure.

  12. Crystal Structure of the Membrane Fusion Protein CusB from Escherichia coli

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Su, Chih-Chia; Yang, Feng; Long, Feng; Reyon, Deepak; Routh, Mathew D.; Kuo, Dennis W.; Mokhtari, Adam K.; Van Ornam, Jonathan D.; Rabe, Katherine L.; Hoy, Julie A.; Lee, Young Jin; Rajashankar, Kanagalaghatta R.; Yu, Edward W.; (Cornell); (Iowa State)

    2010-03-29

    Gram-negative bacteria, such as Escherichia coli, frequently utilize tripartite efflux complexes belonging to the resistance-nodulation-division family to expel diverse toxic compounds from the cell. These systems contain a periplasmic membrane fusion protein (MFP) that is critical for substrate transport. We here present the x-ray structures of the CusB MFP from the copper/silver efflux system of E. coli. This is the first structure of any MFPs associated with heavy-metal efflux transporters. CusB bridges the inner-membrane efflux pump CusA and outer-membrane channel CusC to mediate resistance to Cu{sup +} and Ag{sup +} ions. Two distinct structures of the elongated molecules of CusB were found in the asymmetric unit of a single crystal, which suggests the flexible nature of this protein. Each protomer of CusB can be divided into four different domains, whereby the first three domains are mostly {beta}-strands and the last domain adopts an entirely helical architecture. Unlike other known structures of MFPs, the {alpha}-helical domain of CusB is folded into a three-helix bundle. This three-helix bundle presumably interacts with the periplasmic domain of CusC. The N- and C-termini of CusB form the first {beta}-strand domain, which is found to interact with the periplasmic domain of the CusA efflux pump. Atomic details of how this efflux protein binds Cu{sup +} and Ag{sup +} were revealed by the crystals of the CusB-Cu(I) and CusB-Ag(I) complexes. The structures indicate that CusB consists of multiple binding sites for these metal ions. These findings reveal novel structural features of an MFP in the resistance-nodulation-division efflux system and provide direct evidence that this protein specifically interacts with transported substrates.

  13. Effects of transmembrane potential and pH gradient on the cytochrome c-promoted fusion of mitochondrial mimetic membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawai, Cintia; Pessoto, Felipe S; Graves, Catharine V; Carmona-Ribeiro, Ana Maria; Nantes, Iseli L

    2013-08-01

    The present study investigated the effects of ΔΨ and ΔpH (pH gradient) on the interaction of cytochrome c with a mitochondrial mimetic membrane composed of phosphatidylcholine (PC), phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), and cardiolipin (CL) leading to vesicle fusion. ΔpH generated by lowered bulk pH (pH(out)) of PCPECL liposomes, with an internal pH (pH(in)) of 8.0, favored vesicle fusion with a titration sigmoidal profile (pK(a) ~ 6.9). Conversely, ΔpH generated by enhanced pH(in) of PCPECL at a pH(out) of 6.0 favored the fusion of vesicles with a linear profile. We did not observe a significant amount of liposome fusion when ΔpH was generated by lowered pH(in) at a pH(out) of 8.0. At bulk acidic pH, ΔΨ generated by Na⁺ gradient also favored cyt c-promoted vesicle fusion. At acidic and alkaline pH(out), the presence of ΔpH and ΔΨ did not affect cytochrome c binding affinity measured by pyrene quenching. Therefore, cytochrome c-mediated PC/PE/CL vesicle fusion is dependent of ionization of the protein site L (acidic pH) and the presence of transmembrane potential. The effect of transmembrane potential is probably related to the generation of defects on the lipid bilayer. These results are consistent with previous reports showing that cytochrome c release prior to the dissipation of the ΔΨ(M) blocks inner mitochondrial membrane fusion during apoptosis.

  14. Pandemic H1N1 influenza A directly induces a robust and acute inflammatory gene signature in primary human bronchial epithelial cells downstream of membrane fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paquette, Stéphane G; Banner, David; Chi, Le Thi Bao; Leόn, Alberto J; Xu, Luoling; Ran, Longsi; Huang, Stephen S H; Farooqui, Amber; Kelvin, David J; Kelvin, Alyson A

    2014-01-05

    Pandemic H1N1 influenza A (H1N1pdm) elicits stronger pulmonary inflammation than previously circulating seasonal H1N1 influenza A (sH1N1), yet mechanisms of inflammatory activation in respiratory epithelial cells during H1N1pdm infection are unclear. We investigated host responses to H1N1pdm/sH1N1 infection and virus entry mechanisms in primary human bronchial epithelial cells in vitro. H1N1pdm infection rapidly initiated a robust inflammatory gene signature (3 h post-infection) not elicited by sH1N1 infection. Protein secretion inhibition had no effect on gene induction. Infection with membrane fusion deficient H1N1pdm failed to induce robust inflammatory gene expression which was rescued with restoration of fusion ability, suggesting H1N1pdm directly triggered the inflammatory signature downstream of membrane fusion. Investigation of intra-virion components revealed H1N1pdm viral RNA (vRNA) triggered a stronger inflammatory phenotype than sH1N1 vRNA. Thus, our study is first to report H1N1pdm induces greater inflammatory gene expression than sH1N1 in vitro due to direct virus-epithelial cell interaction.

  15. The role of blood cell membrane lipids on the mode of action of HIV-1 fusion inhibitor sifuvirtide

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Matos, Pedro M.; Freitas, Teresa; Castanho, Miguel A.R.B. [Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de Lisbon, Av. Prof. Egas Moniz, 1649-028 Lisboa (Portugal); Santos, Nuno C., E-mail: nsantos@fm.ul.pt [Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de Lisbon, Av. Prof. Egas Moniz, 1649-028 Lisboa (Portugal)

    2010-12-17

    Research highlights: {yields} Sifuvirtide interacts with erythrocyte and lymphocyte membrane in a concentration dependent manner by decreasing its dipole potential. {yields} Dipole potential variations in lipid vesicles show sifuvirtide's lipid selectivity towards saturated phosphatidylcholines. {yields} This peptide-membrane interaction may direct the drug towards raft-like membrane domains where the receptors used by HIV are located, facilitating its inhibitory action. -- Abstract: Sifuvirtide is a gp41 based peptide that inhibits HIV-1 fusion with the host cells and is currently under clinical trials. Previous studies showed that sifuvirtide partitions preferably to saturated phosphatidylcholine lipid membranes, instead of fluid-phase lipid vesicles. We extended the study to the interaction of the peptide with circulating blood cells, by using the dipole potential sensitive probe di-8-ANEPPS. Sifuvirtide decreased the dipole potential of erythrocyte and lymphocyte membranes in a concentration dependent manner, demonstrating its interaction. Also, the lipid selectivity of the peptide towards more rigid phosphatidylcholines was confirmed based on the dipole potential variations. Overall, the interaction of the peptide with the cell membranes is a contribution of different lipid preferences that presumably directs the peptide towards raft-like domains where the receptors are located, facilitating the reach of the peptide to its molecular target, the gp41 in its pre-fusion conformation.

  16. Ovine Herpesvirus 2 Glycoproteins B, H, and L Are Sufficient for, and Viral Glycoprotein Ov8 Can Enhance, Cell-Cell Membrane Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    AlHajri, Salim M; Cunha, Cristina W; Nicola, Anthony V; Aguilar, Hector C; Li, Hong; Taus, Naomi S

    2017-03-15

    Ovine herpesvirus 2 (OvHV-2) is a gammaherpesvirus in the genus Macavirus that is carried asymptomatically by sheep. Infection of poorly adapted animals with OvHV-2 results in sheep-associated malignant catarrhal fever, a fatal disease characterized by lymphoproliferation and vasculitis. There is no treatment or vaccine for the disease and no cell culture system to propagate the virus. The lack of cell culture has hindered studies of OvHV-2 biology, including its entry mechanism. As an alternative method to study OvHV-2 glycoproteins responsible for membrane fusion as a part of the entry mechanism, we developed a virus-free cell-to-cell membrane fusion assay to identify the minimum required OvHV-2 glycoproteins to induce membrane fusion. OvHV-2 glycoproteins B, H, and L (gB, gH, and gL) were able to induce membrane fusion together but not when expressed individually. Additionally, open reading frame Ov8, unique to OvHV-2, was found to encode a transmembrane glycoprotein that can significantly enhance membrane fusion. Thus, OvHV-2 gB, gH, and gL are sufficient to induce membrane fusion, while glycoprotein Ov8 plays an enhancing role by an unknown mechanism.IMPORTANCE Herpesviruses enter cells via attachment of the virion to the cellular surface and fusion of the viral envelope with cellular membranes. Virus-cell membrane fusion is an important step for a successful viral infection. Elucidating the roles of viral glycoproteins responsible for membrane fusion is critical toward understanding viral entry. Entry of ovine herpesvirus 2 (OvHV-2), the causative agent of sheep associated-malignant catarrhal fever, which is one of the leading causes of death in bison and other ungulates, has not been well studied due to the lack of a cell culture system to propagate the virus. The identification of OvHV-2 glycoproteins that mediate membrane fusion may help identify viral and/or cellular factors involved in OvHV-2 cell tropism and will advance investigation of cellular

  17. Predatory activity of Myxococcus xanthus outer-membrane vesicles and properties of their hydrolase cargo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Alun G L; Davey, Hazel M; Cookson, Alan; Currinn, Heather; Cooke-Fox, Gillian; Stanczyk, Paulina J; Whitworth, David E

    2012-11-01

    The deltaproteobacterium Myxococcus xanthus predates upon members of the soil microbial community by secreting digestive factors and lysing prey cells. Like other Gram-negative bacteria, M. xanthus produces outer membrane vesicles (OMVs), and we show here that M. xanthus OMVs are able to kill Escherichia coli cells. The OMVs of M. xanthus were found to contain active proteases, phosphatases, other hydrolases and secondary metabolites. Alkaline phosphatase activity was found to be almost exclusively associated with OMVs, implying that there is active targeting of phosphatases into OMVs, while other OMV components appear to be packaged passively. The kinetic properties of OMV alkaline phosphatase suggest that there may have been evolutionary adaptation of OMV enzymes to a relatively indiscriminate mode of action, consistent with a role in predation. In addition, the observed regulation of production, and fragility of OMV activity, may protect OMV-producing cells from exploitation by M. xanthus cheating genotypes and/or other competitors. Killing of E. coli by M. xanthus OMVs was enhanced by the addition of a fusogenic enzyme (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase; GAPDH), which triggers fusion of vesicles with target membranes within eukaryotic cells. This suggests that the mechanism of prey killing involves OMV fusion with the E. coli outer membrane. M. xanthus secretes GAPDH, which could potentially modulate the fusion of co-secreted OMVs with prey organisms in nature, enhancing their predatory activity.

  18. Cdc42 and Actin Control Polarized Expression of TI-VAMP Vesicles to Neuronal Growth Cones and Their Fusion with the Plasma MembraneV⃞

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alberts, Philipp; Rudge, Rachel; Irinopoulou, Theano; Danglot, Lydia; Gauthier-Rouvière, Cécile; Galli, Thierry

    2006-01-01

    Tetanus neurotoxin-insensitive vesicle-associated membrane protein (TI-VAMP)-mediated fusion of intracellular vesicles with the plasma membrane is crucial for neurite outgrowth, a pathway not requiring synaptobrevin-dependent exocytosis. Yet, it is not known how the TI-VAMP membrane trafficking pathway is regulated or how it is coordinated with cytoskeletal dynamics within the growth cone that guide neurite outgrowth. Here, we demonstrate that TI-VAMP, but not synaptobrevin 2, concentrates in the peripheral, F-actin-rich region of the growth cones of hippocampal neurons in primary culture. Its accumulation correlates with and depends upon the presence of F-actin. Moreover, acute stimulation of actin remodeling by homophilic activation of the adhesion molecule L1 induces a site-directed, actin-dependent recruitment of the TI-VAMP compartment. Expression of a dominant-positive mutant of Cdc42, a key regulator of cell polarity, stimulates formation of F-actin- and TI-VAMP-rich filopodia outside the growth cone. Furthermore, we report that Cdc42 activates exocytosis of pHLuorin tagged TI-VAMP in an actin-dependent manner. Collectively, our data suggest that Cdc42 and regulated assembly of the F-actin network control the accumulation and exocytosis of TI-VAMP-containing membrane vesicles in growth cones to coordinate membrane trafficking and actin remodeling during neurite outgrowth. PMID:16381811

  19. Cdc42 and actin control polarized expression of TI-VAMP vesicles to neuronal growth cones and their fusion with the plasma membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alberts, Philipp; Rudge, Rachel; Irinopoulou, Theano; Danglot, Lydia; Gauthier-Rouvière, Cécile; Galli, Thierry

    2006-03-01

    Tetanus neurotoxin-insensitive vesicle-associated membrane protein (TI-VAMP)-mediated fusion of intracellular vesicles with the plasma membrane is crucial for neurite outgrowth, a pathway not requiring synaptobrevin-dependent exocytosis. Yet, it is not known how the TI-VAMP membrane trafficking pathway is regulated or how it is coordinated with cytoskeletal dynamics within the growth cone that guide neurite outgrowth. Here, we demonstrate that TI-VAMP, but not synaptobrevin 2, concentrates in the peripheral, F-actin-rich region of the growth cones of hippocampal neurons in primary culture. Its accumulation correlates with and depends upon the presence of F-actin. Moreover, acute stimulation of actin remodeling by homophilic activation of the adhesion molecule L1 induces a site-directed, actin-dependent recruitment of the TI-VAMP compartment. Expression of a dominant-positive mutant of Cdc42, a key regulator of cell polarity, stimulates formation of F-actin- and TI-VAMP-rich filopodia outside the growth cone. Furthermore, we report that Cdc42 activates exocytosis of pHLuorin tagged TI-VAMP in an actin-dependent manner. Collectively, our data suggest that Cdc42 and regulated assembly of the F-actin network control the accumulation and exocytosis of TI-VAMP-containing membrane vesicles in growth cones to coordinate membrane trafficking and actin remodeling during neurite outgrowth.

  20. Accelerator and fusion research division. 1992 Summary of activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1992-12-01

    This report contains brief discussions on research topics in the following area: Heavy-Ion Fusion Accelerator Research; Magnetic Fusion Energy; Advanced Light Source; Center for Beam Physics; Superconducting Magnets; and Bevalac Operations.

  1. Accelerator & Fusion Research Division 1991 summary of activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1991-12-01

    This report discusses research projects in the following areas: Heavy-ion fusion accelerator research; magnetic fusion energy; advanced light source; center for x-ray optics; exploratory studies; superconducting magnets; and bevalac operations.

  2. Accelerator Fusion Research Division 1991 summary of activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berkner, Klaus H.

    1991-12-01

    This report discusses research projects in the following areas: Heavy-ion fusion accelerator research; magnetic fusion energy; advanced light source; center for x-ray optics; exploratory studies; superconducting magnets; and bevalac operations.

  3. Accelerator and Fusion Research Division 1989 summary of activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1990-06-01

    This report discusses the research being conducted at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory's Accelerator and Fusion Research Division. The main topics covered are: heavy-ion fusion accelerator research; magnetic fusion energy; advanced light source; center for x-ray optics; exploratory studies; high-energy physics technology; and bevalac operations.

  4. Controlled cellular fusion using optically trapped plasmonic nano-heaters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahadori, Azra; Lund, Andreas R.; Semsey, Szabolcs; Oddershede, Lene B.; Bendix, Poul M.

    2016-09-01

    Optically trapped plasmonic nano-heaters are used to mediate efficient and controlled fusion of biological membranes. The fusion method is demonstrated by optically trapping plasmonic nanoparticles located in between vesicle membranes leading to rapid lipid and content mixing. As an interesting application we show how direct control over fusion can be used for studying diffusion of peripheral membrane proteins and their interactions with membranes and for studying protein reactions. Membrane proteins encapsulated in an inert vesicle can be transferred to a vesicle composed of negative lipids by optically induced fusion. Mixing of the two membranes results in a fused vesicle with a high affinity for the protein and we observe immediate membrane tubulation due to the activity of the protein. Fusion of distinct membrane compartments also has applications in small scale chemistry for realizing pico-liter reactions and offers many exciting applications within biology which are discussed here.

  5. Designing mimics of membrane active proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sgolastra, Federica; Deronde, Brittany M; Sarapas, Joel M; Som, Abhigyan; Tew, Gregory N

    2013-12-17

    As a semipermeable barrier that controls the flux of biomolecules in and out the cell, the plasma membrane is critical in cell function and survival. Many proteins interact with the plasma membrane and modulate its physiology. Within this large landscape of membrane-active molecules, researchers have focused significant attention on two specific classes of peptides, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and cell penetrating peptides (CPPs), because of their unique properties. In this Account, we describe our efforts over the last decade to build and understand synthetic mimics of antimicrobial peptides (SMAMPs). These endeavors represent one specific example of a much larger effort to understand how synthetic molecules interact with and manipulate the plasma membrane. Using both defined molecular weight oligomers and easier to produce, but heterogeneous, polymers, we have generated scaffolds with biological potency exceeding that of the natural analogues. One of these compounds has progressed through a phase II clinical trial for pan-staph infections. Modern biophysical assays have highlighted the interplay between the synthetic scaffold and lipid composition: a negative Gaussian curvature is required both for pore formation and for the initiation of endosome creation. Although work remains to better resolve the complexity of this interplay between lipids, other bilayer components, and the scaffolds, significant new insights have been discovered. These results point to the importance of considering the various aspects of permeation and how these are related to "pore formation". More recently, our efforts have expanded toward protein transduction domains, or mimics of cell penetrating peptides. Using a combination of unique molecular scaffolds and guanidinium-rich side chains, we have produced an array of polymers with robust membrane (and delivery) activity. In this new area, researchers are just beginning to understand the fundamental interactions between these new

  6. Chloroquine Increases Glucose Uptake via Enhancing GLUT4 Translocation and Fusion with the Plasma Membrane in L6 Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qi Zhou

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Chloroquine can induce an increase in the cellular uptake of glucose; however, the underlying mechanism is unclear. Methods: In this study, translocation of GLUT4 and intracellular Ca2+ changes were simultaneously observed by confocal microscope in L6 cells stably over-expressing IRAP-mOrange. The GLUT4 fusion with the plasma membrane (PM was traced using HA-GLUT4-GFP. Glucose uptake was measured using a cell-based glucose uptake assay. GLUT4 protein was detected by Western blotting and mRNA level was detected by RT-PCR. Results: We found that chloroquine induced significant increases in glucose uptake, glucose transporter GLUT4 translocation to the plasma membrane (GTPM, GLUT4 fusion with the PM, and intracellular Ca2+ in L6 muscle cells. Chloroquine-induced increases of GTPM and intracellular Ca2+ were inhibited by Gallein (Gβγ inhibitor and U73122 (PLC inhibitor. However, 2-APB (IP3R blocker only blocked the increase in intracellular Ca2+ but did not inhibit GTPM increase. These results indicate that chloroquine, via the Gβγ-PLC-IP3-IP3R pathway, induces elevation of Ca2+, and this Ca2+ increase does not play a role in chloroqui-ne-evoked GTPM increase. However, GLUT4 fusion with the PM and glucose uptake were significantly inhibited with BAPTA-AM. This suggests that Ca2+ enhances GLUT4 fusion with the PM resulting in glucose uptake increase. Conclusion: Our data indicate that chloroquine via Gβγ-PLC-IP3-IP3R induces Ca2+ elevation, which in turn promotes GLUT4 fusion with the PM. Moreover, chloroquine can enhance GLUT4 trafficking to the PM. These mechanisms eventually result in glucose uptake increase in control and insulin-resistant L6 cells. These findings suggest that chloroquine might be a potential drug for improving insulin tolerance in diabetic patients.

  7. Membrane insertion of fusion peptides from Ebola and Marburg viruses studied by replica-exchange molecular dynamics simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, Mark A; Lee, Michael S; Yeh, In-Chul

    2017-01-28

    This work presents replica-exchange molecular dynamics simulations of inserting a 16-residue Ebola virus fusion peptide into a membrane bilayer. A computational approach is applied for modeling the peptide at the explicit all-atom level and the membrane-aqueous bilayer by a generalized Born continuum model with a smoothed switching function (GBSW). We provide an assessment of the model calculations in terms of three metrics: (1) the ability to reproduce the NMR structure of the peptide determined in the presence of SDS micelles and comparable structural data on other fusion peptides; (2) determination of the effects of the mutation Trp-8 to Ala and sequence discrimination of the homologous Marburg virus; and (3) calculation of potentials of mean force for estimating the partitioning free energy and their comparison to predictions from the Wimley-White interfacial hydrophobicity scale. We found the GBSW implicit membrane model to produce results of limited accuracy in conformational properties of the peptide when compared to the NMR structure, yet the model resolution is sufficient to determine the effect of sequence differentiation on peptide-membrane integration. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. An allosteric rheostat in HIV-1 gp120 reduces CCR5 stoichiometry required for membrane fusion and overcomes diverse entry limitations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platt, Emily J; Durnin, James P; Shinde, Ujwal; Kabat, David

    2007-11-16

    Binding of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1) envelope glycoprotein gp120 to the CCR5 co-receptor reduces constraints on the metastable transmembrane subunit gp41, thereby enabling gp41 refolding, fusion of viral and cellular membranes, and infection. We previously isolated adapted HIV-1(JRCSF) variants that more efficiently use mutant CCR5s, including CCR5(Delta18) lacking the important tyrosine sulfate-containing amino terminus. Effects of mutant CCR5 concentrations on HIV-1 infectivities were highly cooperative, implying that several may be required. However, because wild-type CCR5 efficiently mediates infections at trace concentrations that were difficult to measure accurately, analyses of its cooperativity were not feasible. New HIV-1(JRCSF) variants efficiently use CCR5(HHMH), a chimera containing murine extracellular loop 2. The adapted virus induces large syncytia in cells containing either wild-type or mutant CCR5s and has multiple gp120 mutations that occurred independently in CCR5(Delta18)-adapted virus. Accordingly, these variants interchangeably use CCR5(HHMH) or CCR5(Delta18). Additional analyses strongly support a novel energetic model for allosteric proteins, implying that the adaptive mutations reduce quaternary constraints holding gp41, thus lowering the activation energy barrier for membrane fusion without affecting bonds to specific CCR5 sites. In accordance with this mechanism, highly adapted HIV-1s require only one associated CCR5(HHMH), whereas poorly adapted viruses require several. However, because they are allosteric ensembles, complexes with additional co-receptors fuse more rapidly and efficiently than minimal ones. Similarly, wild-type HIV-1(JRCSF) is highly adapted to wild-type CCR5 and minimally requires one. The adaptive mutations cause resistances to diverse entry inhibitors and cluster appropriately in the gp120 trimer interface overlying gp41. We conclude that membrane fusion complexes are allosteric machines with an

  9. Mitochondrial fusion dynamics is robust in the heart and depends on calcium oscillations and contractile activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisner, Verónica; Cupo, Ryan R; Gao, Erhe; Csordás, György; Slovinsky, William S; Paillard, Melanie; Cheng, Lan; Ibetti, Jessica; Chen, S R Wayne; Chuprun, J Kurt; Hoek, Jan B; Koch, Walter J; Hajnóczky, György

    2017-01-31

    Mitochondrial fusion is thought to be important for supporting cardiac contractility, but is hardly detectable in cultured cardiomyocytes and is difficult to directly evaluate in the heart. We overcame this obstacle through in vivo adenoviral transduction with matrix-targeted photoactivatable GFP and confocal microscopy. Imaging in whole rat hearts indicated mitochondrial network formation and fusion activity in ventricular cardiomyocytes. Promptly after isolation, cardiomyocytes showed extensive mitochondrial connectivity and fusion, which decayed in culture (at 24-48 h). Fusion manifested both as rapid content mixing events between adjacent organelles and slower events between both neighboring and distant mitochondria. Loss of fusion in culture likely results from the decline in calcium oscillations/contractile activity and mitofusin 1 (Mfn1), because (i) verapamil suppressed both contraction and mitochondrial fusion, (ii) after spontaneous contraction or short-term field stimulation fusion activity increased in cardiomyocytes, and (iii) ryanodine receptor-2-mediated calcium oscillations increased fusion activity in HEK293 cells and complementing changes occurred in Mfn1. Weakened cardiac contractility in vivo in alcoholic animals is also associated with depressed mitochondrial fusion. Thus, attenuated mitochondrial fusion might contribute to the pathogenesis of cardiomyopathy.

  10. Determination of the topology of endoplasmic reticulum membrane proteins using redox-sensitive green-fluorescence protein fusions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsachaki, Maria; Birk, Julia; Egert, Aurélie; Odermatt, Alex

    2015-07-01

    Membrane proteins of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) are involved in a wide array of essential cellular functions. Identification of the topology of membrane proteins can provide significant insight into their mechanisms of action and biological roles. This is particularly important for membrane enzymes, since their topology determines the subcellular site where a biochemical reaction takes place and the dependence on luminal or cytosolic co-factor pools and substrates. The methods currently available for the determination of topology of proteins are rather laborious and require post-lysis or post-fixation manipulation of cells. In this work, we have developed a simple method for defining intracellular localization and topology of ER membrane proteins in living cells, based on the fusion of the respective protein with redox-sensitive green-fluorescent protein (roGFP). We validated the method and demonstrated that roGFP fusion proteins constitute a reliable tool for the study of ER membrane protein topology, using as control microsomal 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11β-HSD) proteins whose topology has been resolved, and comparing with an independent approach. We then implemented this method to determine the membrane topology of six microsomal members of the 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (17β-HSD) family. The results revealed a luminal orientation of the catalytic site for three enzymes, i.e. 17β-HSD6, 7 and 12. Knowledge of the intracellular location of the catalytic site of these enzymes will enable future studies on their biological functions and on the role of the luminal co-factor pool.

  11. Molecular dynamics analysis of conformational change of paramyxovirus F protein during the initial steps of membrane fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martin-Garcia, Fernando; Mendieta-Moreno, Jesus Ignacio; Mendieta, Jesus [Centro de Biologia Molecular ' Severo Ochoa' (CSIC/UAM), C/ Nicolas Cabrera, 1, Cantoblanco, 28049 Madrid (Spain); Biomol-Informatics SL, Parque Cientifico de Madrid, C/ Faraday, 7, Cantoblanco, 28049 Madrid (Spain); Gomez-Puertas, Paulino, E-mail: pagomez@cbm.uam.es [Centro de Biologia Molecular ' Severo Ochoa' (CSIC/UAM), C/ Nicolas Cabrera, 1, Cantoblanco, 28049 Madrid (Spain)

    2012-03-30

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Initial conformational change of paramyxovirus F protein is caused only by mechanical forces. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer HRA region undergoes a structural change from a beta + alpha conformation to an extended coil and then to an all-alpha conformation. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer HRS domains of F protein form three single {alpha}-helices prior to generation of the coiled coil. -- Abstract: The fusion of paramyxovirus to the cell membrane is mediated by fusion protein (F protein) present in the virus envelope, which undergoes a dramatic conformational change during the process. Unlike hemagglutinin in orthomyxovirus, this change is not mediated by an alteration of environmental pH, and its cause remains unknown. Steered molecular dynamics analysis leads us to suggest that the conformational modification is mediated only by stretching mechanical forces once the transmembrane fusion peptide of the protein is anchored to the cell membrane. Such elongating forces will generate major secondary structure rearrangement in the heptad repeat A region of the F protein; from {beta}-sheet conformation to an elongated coil and then spontaneously to an {alpha}-helix. In addition, it is proposed that the heptad repeat A region adopts a final three-helix coiled coil and that this structure appears after the formation of individual helices in each monomer.

  12. Development of new cloning vectors for the production of immunogenic outer membrane fusion proteins in Escherichia coli

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cornelis, P.; Sierra, J.C.; Lim, A. Jr.; Malur, A. [Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Paardenstraat (Belgium)] [and others

    1996-02-01

    The Pseudomonas aeruginosa lipoprotein gene (oprI) was modified by cloning an in-frame polylinker in both orientations at the end of oprI. The resulting plasmids pVUBI and pVUB2 allow high lipoprotein production in E. coli after IPTG induction. The modified lipoproteins are present in the outer membrane and surface-exposed. Outer membrane-bound fusion proteins of different sizes were produced and used to generate antibodies without use of adjuvant. An 87 bp DNA fragment from the vp72 capsid protein gene of African Swine Fever virus (ASFV) and the entire Leishmania major glycoprotein gp63 gene were expressed in this system. Finally, a fusion lipoprotein containing a 16 amino acid epitope from the preS2b region of Hepatitis B virus (HBV) was presented by an antigen-presenting cell line to a T-cell hybridoma while the corresponding cross-linked S2b peptide was not. The results suggest that OprI-based fusion proteins can be used to generate both humoral and cellular immune responses. 44 refs., 7 figs.

  13. Multilevel depth and image fusion for human activity detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ni, Bingbing; Pei, Yong; Moulin, Pierre; Yan, Shuicheng

    2013-10-01

    Recognizing complex human activities usually requires the detection and modeling of individual visual features and the interactions between them. Current methods only rely on the visual features extracted from 2-D images, and therefore often lead to unreliable salient visual feature detection and inaccurate modeling of the interaction context between individual features. In this paper, we show that these problems can be addressed by combining data from a conventional camera and a depth sensor (e.g., Microsoft Kinect). We propose a novel complex activity recognition and localization framework that effectively fuses information from both grayscale and depth image channels at multiple levels of the video processing pipeline. In the individual visual feature detection level, depth-based filters are applied to the detected human/object rectangles to remove false detections. In the next level of interaction modeling, 3-D spatial and temporal contexts among human subjects or objects are extracted by integrating information from both grayscale and depth images. Depth information is also utilized to distinguish different types of indoor scenes. Finally, a latent structural model is developed to integrate the information from multiple levels of video processing for an activity detection. Extensive experiments on two activity recognition benchmarks (one with depth information) and a challenging grayscale + depth human activity database that contains complex interactions between human-human, human-object, and human-surroundings demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed multilevel grayscale + depth fusion scheme. Higher recognition and localization accuracies are obtained relative to the previous methods.

  14. Accelerator and Fusion Research Division: 1984 summary of activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1985-05-01

    During fiscal 1984, major programmatic activities in AFRD continued in each of five areas: accelerator operations, highlighted by the work of nuclear science users, who produced clear evidence for the formation of compressed nuclear matter during heavy-ion collisions; high-energy physics, increasingly dominated by our participation in the design of the Superconducting Super Collider; heavy-ion fusion accelerator research, which focused on the design of a four-beam experiment as a first step toward assessing the promise of heavy-ion inertial-confinement fusion; and research at the Center for X-Ray Optics, which completed its first year of broadly based activities aimed at the exploitation of x-ray and ultraviolet radiation. At the same time, exploratory studies were under way, aimed at investigating major new programs for the division. During the past year, for example, we took a preliminary look at how we could use the Bevatron as an injector for a pair of colliding-beam rings that might provide the first glimpse of a hitherto unobserved state of matter called the quark-gluon plasma. Together with Livermore scientists, we also conducted pioneering high-gain free-electron laser (FEL) experiments and proposed a new FEL-based scheme (called the two-beam accelerator) for accelerating electrons to very high energies. And we began work on the design of the Coherent XUV Facility (CXF), an advanced electron storage ring for the production of intense coherent radiation from either undulators or free-electron lasers.

  15. Activation status coupled transient S-acylation determines membrane partitioning of a plant Rho-related GTPase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorek, Nadav; Poraty, Limor; Sternberg, Hasana; Buriakovsky, Ella; Bar, Einat; Lewinsohn, Efraim; Yalovsky, Shaul

    2017-09-11

    ROPs or RACs are plant Rho-related GTPases implicated in regulation of multitude of signaling pathways that function at the plasma membrane via posttranslational lipid modifications. The relations between ROP activation status and their membrane localization has not been established. Here, we show that endogenous ROPs, as well as a transgenic His6:GFP:AtROP6 fusion protein, were partitioned between Triton X-100 soluble and insoluble membranes. In contrast, the His6:GFP:Atrop6(CA) activated mutant accumulated exclusively in detergent resistant membranes. GDP induced accumulation of ROPs in Triton-soluble membranes, whereas GTPγS induced accumulation of ROPs in detergent-resistant membranes. Recombinant wild type and constitutively active AtROP6 were purified from Arabidopsis plants and in turn their lipids were cleaved and analyzed by gas chromatography coupled mass spectrometry. In Triton-soluble membranes, the wild type AtROP6 was only prenylated, primarily by geranylgeranyl. The activated AtROP6 that accumulated in detergent resistant membranes was modified by prenyl and acyl lipids, identified to be palmitic and stearic acids. Consistently, activated His6:GFP:Atrop6(CA)mS(156), in which C156 was mutated into serine, accumulated in Triton-soluble membranes. These findings show that upon GTP binding and activation, AtROP6 and possibly other ROPs are transiently S-acylated inducing their partitioning into detergent resistant membranes. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  16. cAMP signaling prevents podocyte apoptosis via activation of protein kinase A and mitochondrial fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiaoying; Tao, Hua; Xie, Kewei; Ni, Zhaohui; Yan, Yucheng; Wei, Kai; Chuang, Peter Y; He, John Cijiang; Gu, Leyi

    2014-01-01

    Our previous in vitro studies suggested that cyclic AMP (cAMP) signaling prevents adriamycin (ADR) and puromycin aminonucleoside (PAN)-induced apoptosis in podocytes. As cAMP is an important second messenger and plays a key role in cell proliferation, differentiation and cytoskeleton formation via protein kinase A (PKA) or exchange protein directly activated by cAMP (Epac) pathways, we sought to determine the role of PKA or Epac signaling in cAMP-mediated protection of podocytes. In the ADR nephrosis model, we found that forskolin, a selective activator of adenylate cyclase, attenuated albuminuria and improved the expression of podocyte marker WT-1. When podocytes were treated with pCPT-cAMP (a selective cAMP/PKA activator), PKA activation was increased in a time-dependent manner and prevented PAN-induced podocyte loss and caspase 3 activation, as well as a reduction in mitochondrial membrane potential. We found that PAN and ADR resulted in a decrease in Mfn1 expression and mitochondrial fission in podocytes. pCPT-cAMP restored Mfn1 expression in puromycin or ADR-treated podocytes and induced Drp1 phosphorylation, as well as mitochondrial fusion. Treating podocytes with arachidonic acid resulted in mitochondrial fission, podocyte loss and cleaved caspase 3 production. Arachidonic acid abolished the protective effects of pCPT-cAMP on PAN-treated podocytes. Mdivi, a mitochondrial division inhibitor, prevented PAN-induced cleaved caspase 3 production in podocytes. We conclude that activation of cAMP alleviated murine podocyte caused by ADR. PKA signaling resulted in mitochondrial fusion in podocytes, which at least partially mediated the effects of cAMP.

  17. cAMP signaling prevents podocyte apoptosis via activation of protein kinase A and mitochondrial fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoying Li

    Full Text Available Our previous in vitro studies suggested that cyclic AMP (cAMP signaling prevents adriamycin (ADR and puromycin aminonucleoside (PAN-induced apoptosis in podocytes. As cAMP is an important second messenger and plays a key role in cell proliferation, differentiation and cytoskeleton formation via protein kinase A (PKA or exchange protein directly activated by cAMP (Epac pathways, we sought to determine the role of PKA or Epac signaling in cAMP-mediated protection of podocytes. In the ADR nephrosis model, we found that forskolin, a selective activator of adenylate cyclase, attenuated albuminuria and improved the expression of podocyte marker WT-1. When podocytes were treated with pCPT-cAMP (a selective cAMP/PKA activator, PKA activation was increased in a time-dependent manner and prevented PAN-induced podocyte loss and caspase 3 activation, as well as a reduction in mitochondrial membrane potential. We found that PAN and ADR resulted in a decrease in Mfn1 expression and mitochondrial fission in podocytes. pCPT-cAMP restored Mfn1 expression in puromycin or ADR-treated podocytes and induced Drp1 phosphorylation, as well as mitochondrial fusion. Treating podocytes with arachidonic acid resulted in mitochondrial fission, podocyte loss and cleaved caspase 3 production. Arachidonic acid abolished the protective effects of pCPT-cAMP on PAN-treated podocytes. Mdivi, a mitochondrial division inhibitor, prevented PAN-induced cleaved caspase 3 production in podocytes. We conclude that activation of cAMP alleviated murine podocyte caused by ADR. PKA signaling resulted in mitochondrial fusion in podocytes, which at least partially mediated the effects of cAMP.

  18. Effects of a perfusion bioreactor activated novel bone substitute in spine fusion in sheep

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Jesper Roed; Koroma, Kariatta Ester; Ding, Ming

    2012-01-01

    To evaluate the effect of a large perfusion-bioreactor cell-activated bone substitute, on a two-level large posterolateral spine fusion sheep model.......To evaluate the effect of a large perfusion-bioreactor cell-activated bone substitute, on a two-level large posterolateral spine fusion sheep model....

  19. Enhancing the antimicrobial activity of Sus scrofa lysozyme by N-terminal fusion of a sextuple unique homologous peptide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Dewei; Cai, Guolin; Li, Xiaomin; Lu, Jian; Zhang, Liang

    2017-02-10

    Sus scrofa lysozyme (SSL), an important component of the pig immune system, is a potential candidate to replace antibiotics in feed. However, there is little antimicrobial activity of natural SSL against gram-negative bacteria, which limits its application. In this study, a unique peptide (A-W-V-A-W-K) with antimicrobial activity against gram-negative bacteria was discovered and purified from trypsin hydrolysate of natural SSL. This unique peptide was fused to natural SSL and the recombinant fused SSL exhibited improved activity against gram-negative bacteria. The N-terminal fusion likely increased the membrane penetrability and induced programmed bacterial cell death. The recombinant fused SSL also showed higher activity against some gram-positive bacteria with O-acetylation. By N-terminal fusion of the sextuple peptide, the anti-microbial activity, either to gram-positive or negative bacteria, of the recombinant SSL was higher than the fusion of only one copy of the peptide. This study provides a general, feasible, and highly useful strategy to enhance the antimicrobial activity of lysozyme.

  20. Solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance measurements of HIV fusion peptide 13CO to lipid 31P proximities support similar partially inserted membrane locations of the α helical and β sheet peptide structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabrys, Charles M; Qiang, Wei; Sun, Yan; Xie, Li; Schmick, Scott D; Weliky, David P

    2013-10-03

    Fusion of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) membrane and the host cell membrane is an initial step of infection of the host cell. Fusion is catalyzed by gp41, which is an integral membrane protein of HIV. The fusion peptide (FP) is the ∼25 N-terminal residues of gp41 and is a domain of gp41 that plays a key role in fusion catalysis likely through interaction with the host cell membrane. Much of our understanding of the FP domain has been accomplished with studies of "HFP", i.e., a ∼25-residue peptide composed of the FP sequence but lacking the rest of gp41. HFP catalyzes fusion between membrane vesicles and serves as a model system to understand fusion catalysis. HFP binds to membranes and the membrane location of HFP is likely a significant determinant of fusion catalysis perhaps because the consequent membrane perturbation reduces the fusion activation energy. In the present study, many HFPs were synthesized and differed in the residue position that was (13)CO backbone labeled. Samples were then prepared that each contained a singly (13)CO labeled HFP incorporated into membranes that lacked cholesterol. HFP had distinct molecular populations with either α helical or oligomeric β sheet structure. Proximity between the HFP (13)CO nuclei and (31)P nuclei in the membrane headgroups was probed by solid-state NMR (SSNMR) rotational-echo double-resonance (REDOR) measurements. For many samples, there were distinct (13)CO shifts for the α helical and β sheet structures so that the proximities to (31)P nuclei could be determined for each structure. Data from several differently labeled HFPs were then incorporated into a membrane location model for the particular structure. In addition to the (13)CO labeled residue position, the HFPs also differed in sequence and/or chemical structure. "HFPmn" was a linear peptide that contained the 23 N-terminal residues of gp41. "HFPmn_V2E" contained the V2E mutation that for HIV leads to greatly reduced extent of fusion and

  1. Overview of Indian activities on fusion reactor materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Srikumar

    2014-12-01

    This paper on overview of Indian activities on fusion reactor materials describes in brief the efforts India has made to develop materials for the first wall of a tokamak, its blanket and superconducting magnet coils. Through a systematic and scientific approach, India has developed and commercially produced reduced activation ferritic/martensitic (RAFM) steel that is comparable to Eurofer 97. Powder of low activation ferritic/martensitic oxide dispersion strengthened steel with characteristics desired for its application in the first wall of a tokamak has been produced on the laboratory scale. V-4Cr-4Ti alloy was also prepared in the laboratory, and kinetics of hydrogen absorption in this was investigated. Cu-1 wt%Cr-0.1 wt%Zr - an alloy meant for use as heat transfer elements for hypervapotrons and heat sink for the first wall - was developed and characterized in detail for its aging behavior. The role of addition of a small quantity of Zr in its improved fatigue performance was delineated, and its diffusion bonding with both W and stainless steel was achieved using Ni as an interlayer. The alloy was produced in large quantities and used for manufacturing both the heat transfer elements and components for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER). India has proposed to install and test a lead-lithium cooled ceramic breeder test blanket module (LLCB-TBM) at ITER. To meet this objective, efforts have been made to produce and characterize Li2TiO3 pebbles, and also improve the thermal conductivity of packed beds of these pebbles. Liquid metal loops have been set up and corrosion behavior of RAFM steel in flowing Pb-Li eutectic has been studied in the presence as well as absence of magnetic fields. To prevent permeation of tritium and reduce the magneto-hydro-dynamic drag, processes have been developed for coating alumina on RAFM steel. Apart from these activities, different approaches being attempted to make the U-shaped first wall of the TBM box

  2. Pandemic H1N1 influenza A directly induces a robust and acute inflammatory gene signature in primary human bronchial epithelial cells downstream of membrane fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paquette, Stéphane G. [Division of Experimental Therapeutics, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); Institute of Medical Science, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); Banner, David [Division of Experimental Therapeutics, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); Chi, Le Thi Bao [Department of Microbiology, Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Thua Thien Hue (Viet Nam); Carlo Urbani Centre, Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Thua Thien Hue (Viet Nam); Leon, Alberto J. [Division of Experimental Therapeutics, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); International Institute of Infection and Immunity, Shantou University Medical College, Shantou, Guangdong (China); Xu, Luoling; Ran, Longsi [Division of Experimental Therapeutics, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); Huang, Stephen S.H. [Division of Experimental Therapeutics, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); Department of Immunology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); Farooqui, Amber [Division of Experimental Therapeutics, Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); International Institute of Infection and Immunity, Shantou University Medical College, Shantou, Guangdong (China); and others

    2014-01-05

    Pandemic H1N1 influenza A (H1N1pdm) elicits stronger pulmonary inflammation than previously circulating seasonal H1N1 influenza A (sH1N1), yet mechanisms of inflammatory activation in respiratory epithelial cells during H1N1pdm infection are unclear. We investigated host responses to H1N1pdm/sH1N1 infection and virus entry mechanisms in primary human bronchial epithelial cells in vitro. H1N1pdm infection rapidly initiated a robust inflammatory gene signature (3 h post-infection) not elicited by sH1N1 infection. Protein secretion inhibition had no effect on gene induction. Infection with membrane fusion deficient H1N1pdm failed to induce robust inflammatory gene expression which was rescued with restoration of fusion ability, suggesting H1N1pdm directly triggered the inflammatory signature downstream of membrane fusion. Investigation of intra-virion components revealed H1N1pdm viral RNA (vRNA) triggered a stronger inflammatory phenotype than sH1N1 vRNA. Thus, our study is first to report H1N1pdm induces greater inflammatory gene expression than sH1N1 in vitro due to direct virus–epithelial cell interaction. - Highlights: • We investigated H1N1pdm/sH1N1 infection in primary epithelial cells. • H1N1pdm directly initiated a robust inflammatory gene signature, sH1N1 did not. • H1N1pdm viral RNA triggered a stronger response than sH1N1. • H1N1pdm induces greater response due to direct virus–cell interaction. • These results have potential to impact vaccine and therapeutic development.

  3. A modular platform for one-step assembly of multi-component membrane systems by fusion of charged proteoliposomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishmukhametov, Robert R.; Russell, Aidan N.; Berry, Richard M.

    2016-10-01

    An important goal in synthetic biology is the assembly of biomimetic cell-like structures, which combine multiple biological components in synthetic lipid vesicles. A key limiting assembly step is the incorporation of membrane proteins into the lipid bilayer of the vesicles. Here we present a simple method for delivery of membrane proteins into a lipid bilayer within 5 min. Fusogenic proteoliposomes, containing charged lipids and membrane proteins, fuse with oppositely charged bilayers, with no requirement for detergent or fusion-promoting proteins, and deliver large, fragile membrane protein complexes into the target bilayers. We demonstrate the feasibility of our method by assembling a minimal electron transport chain capable of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthesis, combining Escherichia coli F1Fo ATP-synthase and the primary proton pump bo3-oxidase, into synthetic lipid vesicles with sizes ranging from 100 nm to ~10 μm. This provides a platform for the combination of multiple sets of membrane protein complexes into cell-like artificial structures.

  4. Mechanics of nonplanar membranes with force-dipole activity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lomholt, Michael Andersen

    2006-01-01

    A study is made of how active membrane proteins can modify the long wavelength mechanics of fluid membranes. The activity of the proteins is modelled as disturbing the protein surroundings through nonlocal force distributions of which a force-dipole distribution is the simplest example. An analyt...... contributions to mechanical properties such as tension and bending moments become apparent. It is also explained how the activity can induce a hydrodynamic attraction between the active proteins in the membrane....

  5. Overview of the RFX-mod fusion science activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuin, M.; Dal Bello, S.; Marrelli, L.; Puiatti, M. E.; Agostinetti, P.; Agostini, M.; Antoni, V.; Auriemma, F.; Barbisan, M.; Barbui, T.; Baruzzo, M.; Belli, F.; Bettini, P.; Bigi, M.; Bilel, R.; Boldrin, M.; Bolzonella, T.; Bonfiglio, D.; Brombin, M.; Buffa, A.; Bustreo, C.; Canton, A.; Cappello, S.; Carraro, L.; Cavazzana, R.; Cester, D.; Chacon, L.; Chitarin, G.; Cooper, W. A.; Cordaro, L.; Dalla Palma, M.; Deambrosis, S.; Delogu, R.; De Lorenzi, A.; De Masi, G.; Dong, J. Q.; Escande, D. F.; Fassina, A.; Felici, F.; Ferro, A.; Finotti, C.; Franz, P.; Frassinetti, L.; Gaio, E.; Ghezzi, F.; Giudicotti, L.; Gnesotto, F.; Gobbin, M.; Gonzalez, W. A.; Grando, L.; Guo, S. C.; Hanson, J. D.; Hirshman, S. P.; Innocente, P.; Jackson, J. L.; Kiyama, S.; Komm, M.; Kudlacek, O.; Laguardia, L.; Li, C.; Liu, B.; Liu, S. F.; Liu, Y. Q.; López-Bruna, D.; Lorenzini, R.; Luce, T. C.; Luchetta, A.; Maistrello, A.; Manduchi, G.; Mansfield, D. K.; Marchiori, G.; Marconato, N.; Marcuzzi, D.; Martin, P.; Martines, E.; Martini, S.; Mazzitelli, G.; McCormack, O.; Miorin, E.; Momo, B.; Moresco, M.; Narushima, Y.; Okabayashi, M.; Paccagnella, R.; Patel, N.; Pavei, M.; Peruzzo, S.; Pilan, N.; Pigatto, L.; Piovan, R.; Piovesan, P.; Piron, C.; Piron, L.; Predebon, I.; Pucella, G.; Rea, C.; Recchia, M.; Rizzolo, A.; Rostagni, G.; Ruset, C.; Sajò-Bohus, L.; Sakakita, H.; Sanchez, R.; Sarff, J. S.; Sattin, F.; Scarin, P.; Schmitz, O.; Schneider, W.; Siragusa, M.; Sonato, P.; Spada, E.; Spagnolo, S.; Spolaore, M.; Spong, D. A.; Spizzo, G.; Stevanato, L.; Suzuki, Y.; Taliercio, C.; Terranova, D.; Tudisco, O.; Urso, G.; Valente, M.; Valisa, M.; Vallar, M.; Veranda, M.; Vianello, N.; Villone, F.; Vincenzi, P.; Visonà, N.; White, R. B.; Xanthopoulos, P.; Xu, X. Y.; Yanovskiy, V.; Zamengo, A.; Zanca, P.; Zaniol, B.; Zanotto, L.; Zhang, Y.; Zilli, E.

    2017-10-01

    This paper reports the main recent results of the RFX-mod fusion science activity. The RFX-mod device is characterized by a unique flexibility in terms of accessible magnetic configurations. Axisymmetric and helically shaped reversed-field pinch equilibria have been studied, along with tokamak plasmas in a wide range of q(a) regimes (spanning from 4 down to 1.2 values). The full range of magnetic configurations in between the two, the so-called ultra-low q ones, has been explored, with the aim of studying specific physical issues common to all equilibria, such as, for example, the density limit phenomenon. The powerful RFX-mod feedback control system has been exploited for MHD control, which allowed us to extend the range of experimental parameters, as well as to induce specific magnetic perturbations for the study of 3D effects. In particular, transport, edge and isotope effects in 3D equilibria have been investigated, along with runaway mitigations through induced magnetic perturbations. The first transitions to an improved confinement scenario in circular and D-shaped tokamak plasmas have been obtained thanks to an active modification of the edge electric field through a polarized electrode. The experiments are supported by intense modeling with 3D MHD, gyrokinetic, guiding center and transport codes. Proposed modifications to the RFX-mod device, which will enable further contributions to the solution of key issues in the roadmap to ITER and DEMO, are also briefly presented.

  6. Material Science Activities for Fusion Reactors in Kazakhstan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tazhibayeva, I.; Kenzhin, E.; Kulsartov, T. [Institute of Atomic Energy NNC RK, Kurchatov (Kazakhstan); Shestakov, V. [Kazakhstan State University, Almaty (Kazakhstan); Chikhray, Y. [Kazakh National University, Kourmangazy 15, app.lO, 480100 Almaty (Kazakhstan); Azizov, E. [TRINITI, Troitsk (Russian Federation); Filatov, O. [Effremov Institute, Saint Petersburg (Russian Federation); Chernov, V.M. [Bochvar Institute of Inorganic Materials, P.O. Box 369, 123060 Moscow (Russian Federation)

    2007-07-01

    Full text of publication follows: Paper contains results of fusion material testing national program and results of activities on creation of material testing spherical tokamak. Hydrogen isotope behavior (diffusion, permeation, and accumulation) in the components of the first wall and divertor was studied taking into account temperature, pressure, and reactor irradiation. There were carried out out-of-pile and in-pile (reactors IVG-IM, WWRK, RA) studies of beryllium of various grades (TV-56, TShG-56, DV-56, TGP-56, TIP-56), graphites (RG-T, MPG-8, FP 479, R 4340), molybdenum, tungsten, steels (Cr18Ni10Ti, Cr16Ni15, MANET, F82H), alloys V-(4-6)Cr-( 4-5)Ti, Cu+1%Cr+0.1%Zr, and double Be/Cu and triple Be/Cu/steel structures. Tritium permeability from eutectic Pb+17%Li through steels Cr18Ni10Ti, Cr16Ni15, MANET, and F82H were studied taking into account protective coating effects. The tritium production rate was experimentally assessed during in-pile and post-reactor experiments. There were carried out radiation tests of ceramic Li{sub 2}TiO{sub 3} (96% enrichment by Li-6) with in-situ registration of released tritium and following post-irradiation material tests of irradiated samples. Verification of computer codes for simulation of accidents related to LOCA in ITER reactor was carried out. Codes' verification was carried out for a mockup of first wall in a form of three-layer cylinder of beryllium, bronze (Cu-Cr-Zr) and stainless steel. At present Kazakhstan Tokamak for Material testing (tokamak KTM) is created in National Nuclear Center of Republic of Kazakhstan in cooperation with Russian Federation organizations (start-up is scheduled on 2008). Tokamak KTM allows for expansion and specification of the studies and tests of materials, protection options of first wall, receiving divertor tiles and divertor components, methods for load reduction at divertor, and various options of heat/power removal, fast evacuation of divertor volume and development of the

  7. Physicochemical characterization of GBV-C E1 peptides as potential inhibitors of HIV-1 fusion peptide: interaction with model membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Martín, Maria Jesús; Cruz, Antonio; Busquets, M Antònia; Haro, Isabel; Alsina, M Asunción; Pujol, Montserrat

    2012-10-15

    Four peptide sequences corresponding to the E1 protein of GBV-C: NCCAPEDIGFCLEGGCLV (P7), APEDIGFCLEGGCLVALG (P8), FCLEGGCLVALGCTICTD (P10) and QAGLAVRPGKSAAQLVGE (P18) were studied as they were capable of interfering with the HIV-1 fusion peptide (HIV-1 FP). In this work, the surface properties of the E1 peptide sequences are investigated and their physicochemical characterization is done by studying their interaction with model membranes; moreover, their mixtures with HIV-1 FP were also studied in order to observe whether they are capable to modify the HIV-1 FP interaction with model membranes as liposomes or monolayers. Physicochemical properties of peptides (pI and net charge) were predicted showing similarities between P7 and P8, and P10 and HIV-1 FP, whereas P18 appears to be very different from the rest. Circular dichroism experiments were carried out showing an increase of the percentage of α-helix of P7 and P8 when mixed with HIV-1 FP corroborating a conformational change that could be the cause of their inhibition ability. Penetration experiments show that all the peptides can spontaneously insert into phospholipid membranes. Analysis of compression isotherms indicates that the peptides interact with phospholipids and the E1 peptides modify the compression isotherms of HIV-1 FP, but there is one of the peptides that excelled as the best candidate for inhibiting the activity of HIV-1 FP, P7, and therefore, that could be potentially used in future anti-HIV-1 research.

  8. Interactive, Computer-Assisted Tracking of Speckle Trajectories in Fluorescence Microscopy: Application to Actin Polymerization and Membrane Fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Matthew B.; Karatekin, Erdem; Gohlke, Andrea; Mizuno, Hiroaki; Watanabe, Naoki; Vavylonis, Dimitrios

    2011-01-01

    Analysis of particle trajectories in images obtained by fluorescence microscopy reveals biophysical properties such as diffusion coefficient or rates of association and dissociation. Particle tracking and lifetime measurement is often limited by noise, large mobilities, image inhomogeneities, and path crossings. We present Speckle TrackerJ, a tool that addresses some of these challenges using computer-assisted techniques for finding positions and tracking particles in different situations. A dynamic user interface assists in the creation, editing, and refining of particle tracks. The following are results from application of this program: 1), Tracking single molecule diffusion in simulated images. The shape of the diffusing marker on the image changes from speckle to cloud, depending on the relationship of the diffusion coefficient to the camera exposure time. We use these images to illustrate the range of diffusion coefficients that can be measured. 2), We used the program to measure the diffusion coefficient of capping proteins in the lamellipodium. We found values ∼0.5 μm2/s, suggesting capping protein association with protein complexes or the membrane. 3), We demonstrate efficient measuring of appearance and disappearance of EGFP-actin speckles within the lamellipodium of motile cells that indicate actin monomer incorporation into the actin filament network. 4), We marked appearance and disappearance events of fluorescently labeled vesicles to supported lipid bilayers and tracked single lipids from the fused vesicle on the bilayer. This is the first time, to our knowledge, that vesicle fusion has been detected with single molecule sensitivity and the program allowed us to perform a quantitative analysis. 5), By discriminating between undocking and fusion events, dwell times for vesicle fusion after vesicle docking to membranes can be measured. PMID:21961607

  9. Characterization of the pH-induced fusion of liposomes with the plasma membrane of rye protoplasts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arvinte , T.; Steponkus, P.L.

    1988-07-26

    The authors present evidence that at acidic pH, liposomes composed of soybean lipids fuse with the plasma membrane of protoplasts isolated from rye leaves. Using the resonance energy transfer assay (RET), they determined the rate and extent of liposome and protoplast plasma membrane lipid mixing. The fluorescent donor-acceptor pair was N-(7-nitro-2,1,3-benzoxadiazol-4-yl)phosphatidyl-ethanolamine (N-NBD-PE) and N-(lissamine rhodamine B sulfonyl)phosphatidylethanolamine (N-Rh-PE). Fusion was substantial below pH 5, and the half-time of lipid mixing was fast (t/sub 1/2/ on the order of minutes) and pH, concentration, and temperature dependent. The extent of liposome and protoplast fusion from the total amount of liposomes associated with the protoplasts was also determined by the RET assay. Protoplasts were incubated with fluorescent-labeled liposomes (5 min at 30/sup 0/C) at different pH values and then washed twice by centrifugation. The fluorescence spectra of the protoplast suspension permitted determination of the ratio of N-NBD-PE emission at 530 nm to the N-Rh-PE emission at 590 nm, which is a measure of the degree of lipid mixing. The amount of liposomes associated (fused and unfused) with protoplasts at pH 3.9 was approximately 9 times greater than that at pH 5.6. The transfer of liposome contents to the protoplast interior was studied with a method based on the fluorescence enhancement of a solution of calcein, initially confined in the liposomes at self-quenching concentrations. The kinetics of calcein release were very similar to those of lipid mixing. Fluorescence microscopy showed that after fusion with liposomes containing calcein, the protoplasts exhibited a strong diffuse fluorescence in the interior.

  10. DNA Duplexes with Hydrophobic Modifications Inhibit Fusion between HIV-1 and Cell Membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Xu, Liang; Cai, Lifeng; Chen, Xueliang; Jiang, Xifeng; Chong, Huihui; Zheng, Baohua; Wang, Kun; He, Junlin; Chen, Wei; ZHANG, Tao; Cheng, Maosheng; He, Yuxian; Liu, Keliang

    2013-01-01

    Discovery of new drugs for the treatment of AIDS typically possessing unique structures associated with novel mechanisms of action has been of great importance due to the quick drug-resistant mutations of HIV-1 strains. The work presented in this report describes a novel class of DNA duplex-based HIV-1 fusion inhibitors. Hydrophobic groups were introduced into a DNA duplex skeleton either at one end, at both ends, or in the middle. These modified DNA duplexes inhibited fusion between HIV-1 an...

  11. Active inhibition of herpes simplex virus type 1-induced cell fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bzik, D.J.; Person, S.; Read, G.S.

    1982-01-01

    Previous studies have demonstrated that syn mutant-infected cells fuse less well with nonsyncytial virus-infected cells than with uninfected cells, a phenomenon defined as function inhibition. The present study characterizes the kinetics as well as the requirements for expression of fusion inhibition. Initially, the capacity of sparse syn mutant-infected cells to fuse with uninfected surrounding cells was determined throughout infection. Of seven syn mutants examined, including representatives with alterations in two different viral genes that affect cell fusion, all showed an increase in fusion capacity up to 12 hr after infection and a decrease at later times. Fusion inhibition was examined in experiments employing sparse syn20-infected cells which had been incubated to a maximum fusion capacity; it was shown that surrounding cells infected with KOS, the parent of syn20, began to inhibit fusion by the syn20-infected cells at about 4 hr after infection, and that the maximum ability to inhibit fusion was attained at about 6 hr after infection. The metabolic blocking agents actinomycin D (RNA), cycloheximide (protein), 2-deoxyglucose, and tunicamycin (glycoslyation of glycoproteins) all showed the ability to inhibit the expression of fusion inhibition by KOS-infected cells if added shortly after infection. It is concluded that fusion inhibition is an active process that requires the synthesis of RNA, proteins, and glycoproteins. 17 references, 3 figures, 2 tables.

  12. Menin-MLL inhibitors reverse oncogenic activity of MLL fusion proteins in leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grembecka, Jolanta; He, Shihan; Shi, Aibin; Purohit, Trupta; Muntean, Andrew G; Sorenson, Roderick J; Showalter, Hollis D; Murai, Marcelo J; Belcher, Amalia M; Hartley, Thomas; Hess, Jay L; Cierpicki, Tomasz

    2012-03-01

    Translocations involving the mixed lineage leukemia (MLL) gene result in human acute leukemias with very poor prognosis. The leukemogenic activity of MLL fusion proteins is critically dependent on their direct interaction with menin, a product of the multiple endocrine neoplasia (MEN1) gene. Here we present what are to our knowledge the first small-molecule inhibitors of the menin-MLL fusion protein interaction that specifically bind menin with nanomolar affinities. These compounds effectively reverse MLL fusion protein-mediated leukemic transformation by downregulating the expression of target genes required for MLL fusion protein oncogenic activity. They also selectively block proliferation and induce both apoptosis and differentiation of leukemia cells harboring MLL translocations. Identification of these compounds provides a new tool for better understanding MLL-mediated leukemogenesis and represents a new approach for studying the role of menin as an oncogenic cofactor of MLL fusion proteins. Our findings also highlight a new therapeutic strategy for aggressive leukemias with MLL rearrangements.

  13. Application of Activated Carbon Mixed Matrix Membrane for Oxygen Purification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tutuk Djoko Kusworo

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available This study is performed primarily to investigate the effect of activated carbon on oxygen separation performance of polyethersulfone mixed matrix membrane. In this study, polyethersulfone (PES-activated carbon (AC mixed matrix membranes were fabricated using dry/wet technique. This study investigates the effect of polyethersulfone concentration and activated carbon loading on the performance of mixed matrix membrane in terms of permeability and selectivity of O2/N2 gas separation. The fabricated flat sheet mixed matrix membranes were characterized using permeation test, Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FESEM analysis and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC. It was found that the activated carbon loading affected the gas separation performance of mixed matrix membrane. PES- 1wt% AC membrane yielded 3.75 of O2/N2 selectivity, however 5 wt% of AC can produced 5 O2/N2 selectivity

  14. Comparison of fusion methods based on DST and DBN in human activity recognition

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    Ambient assistive living environments require sophisticated information fusion and reasoning techniques to accurately identify activities of a person under care. In this paper, we explain, compare and discuss the application of two powerful fusion methods, namely dynamic Bayesian networks (DBN) and Dempster-Shafer theory (DST), for human activity recognition. Both methods are described, the implementation of activity recognition based on these methods is explained, and model acquisition and composition are ...

  15. Proteomics of photoreceptor outer segments identifies a subset of SNARE and Rab proteins implicated in membrane vesicle trafficking and fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwok, Michael C M; Holopainen, Juha M; Molday, Laurie L; Foster, Leonard J; Molday, Robert S

    2008-06-01

    The outer segment is a specialized compartment of vertebrate rod and cone photoreceptor cells where phototransduction takes place. In rod cells it consists of an organized stack of disks enclosed by a separate plasma membrane. Although most proteins involved in phototransduction have been identified and characterized, little is known about the proteins that are responsible for outer segment structure and renewal. In this study we used a tandem mass spectrometry-based proteomics approach to identify proteins in rod outer segment preparations as an initial step in defining their roles in photoreceptor structure, function, renewal, and degeneration. Five hundred and sixteen proteins were identified including 41 proteins that function in rod and cone phototransduction and the visual cycle and most proteins previously shown to be involved in outer segment structure and metabolic pathways. In addition, numerous proteins were detected that have not been previously reported to be present in outer segments including a subset of Rab and SNARE proteins implicated in vesicle trafficking and membrane fusion. Western blotting and immunofluorescence microscopy confirmed the presence of Rab 11b, Rab 18, Rab 1b, and Rab GDP dissociation inhibitor in outer segments. The SNARE proteins, VAMP2/3, syntaxin 3, N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor, and Munc 18 detected in outer segment preparations by mass spectrometry and Western blotting were also observed in outer segments by immunofluorescence microscopy. Syntaxin 3 and N-ethylmaleimide- sensitive factor had a restricted localization at the base of the outer segments, whereas VAMP2/3 and Munc 18 were distributed throughout the outer segments. These results suggest that Rab and SNARE proteins play a role in vesicle trafficking and membrane fusion as part of the outer segment renewal process. The data set generated in this study is a valuable resource for further analysis of photoreceptor outer segment structure and function.

  16. Membrane pumping technology, helium and hydrogen isotopes separation in the fusion hydrogen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pigarov, A.Yu.; Pistunovich, V.I. [NFI RRC-Kurchatov Institute, Moscow (Russian Federation); Busnyuk, A.O. [Bonch-Bruyevich Electrotechnical Inst. of Communications, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation)] [and others

    1994-12-31

    A gas pumping system for the ITER, improved by implementation of superpermeable membranes for selective hydrogen isotope exhaust, is considered. The study of the pumping capability of a niobium membrane for a hydrogen-helium mixture has been fulfilled. The membrane superpermeability can be only realized for atomic hydrogen. Helium does not pass through the membrane, and its presence does not affect the hydrogen pumping. A detailed Monte Carlo simulation of gas behavior for the experimental facility has been done. The probability of permeation for a hydrogen atom for one collision with the membrane is {approximately}0.1; the same probability of molecule permeation is {approximately}10{sup {minus}5}. The probability for atomization, i.e. re-emission of an atomizer is {approximately}0.2; the probability of recombination of an atom is {approximately}0.2.

  17. pH-Dependent Formation and Disintegration of the Influenza A Virus Protein Scaffold To Provide Tension for Membrane Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batishchev, O V; Shilova, L A; Kachala, M V; Tashkin, V Y; Sokolov, V S; Fedorova, N V; Baratova, L A; Knyazev, D G; Zimmerberg, J; Chizmadzhev, Y A

    2015-10-14

    Influenza virus is taken up from a pH-neutral extracellular milieu into an endosome, whose contents then acidify, causing changes in the viral matrix protein (M1) that coats the inner monolayer of the viral lipid envelope. At a pH of ~6, M1 interacts with the viral ribonucleoprotein (RNP) in a putative priming stage; at this stage, the interactions of the M1 scaffold coating the lipid envelope are intact. The M1 coat disintegrates as acidification continues to a pH of ~5 to clear a physical path for the viral genome to transit from the viral interior to the cytoplasm. Here we investigated the physicochemical mechanism of M1's pH-dependent disintegration. In neutral media, the adsorption of M1 protein on the lipid bilayer was electrostatic in nature and reversible. The energy of the interaction of M1 molecules with each other in M1 dimers was about 10 times as weak as that of the interaction of M1 molecules with the lipid bilayer. Acidification drives conformational changes in M1 molecules due to changes in the M1 charge, leading to alterations in their electrostatic interactions. Dropping the pH from 7.1 to 6.0 did not disturb the M1 layer; dropping it lower partially desorbed M1 because of increased repulsion between M1 monomers still stuck to the membrane. Lipid vesicles coated with M1 demonstrated pH-dependent rupture of the vesicle membrane, presumably because of the tension generated by this repulsive force. Thus, the disruption of the vesicles coincident with M1 protein scaffold disintegration at pH 5 likely stretches the lipid membrane to the point of rupture, promoting fusion pore widening for RNP release. Influenza remains a top killer of human beings throughout the world, in part because of the influenza virus's rapid binding to cells and its uptake into compartments hidden from the immune system. To attack the influenza virus during this time of hiding, we need to understand the physical forces that allow the internalized virus to infect the cell. In

  18. IFMIF : International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility Conceptual Design Activity: Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martone, M. [ENEA, Centro Ricerche Frascati, Rome (Italy)

    1997-01-01

    This report documents the results of the Conceptual Design Activity (CDA) on the International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility (IFMIF), conducted during 1995 and 1996. The activity is under the auspices of the International Energy Agency (IEA) Implementing Agreement for a Programme of Research and Development on Fusion Materials. An IEA Fusion Materials Executive Subcommittee was charged with overseeing the IFMIF-CDA work. Participants in the CDA are the European Union, Japan, and the United States, with the Russian Federation as an associate member.

  19. Accelerator & Fusion Research Division: 1993 Summary of activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chew, J.

    1994-04-01

    The Accelerator and Fusion Research Division (AFRD) is not only one of the largest scientific divisions at LBL, but also the one of the most diverse. Major efforts include: (1) investigations in both inertial and magnetic fusion energy; (2) operation of the Advanced Light Source, a state-of-the-art synchrotron radiation facility; (3) exploratory investigations of novel radiation sources and colliders; (4) research and development in superconducting magnets for accelerators and other scientific and industrial applications; and (5) ion beam technology development for nuclear physics and for industrial and biomedical applications. Each of these topics is discussed in detail in this book.

  20. The Structural Basis of Cholesterol Activity in Membranes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Olsen, Brett N.; Bielska, Agata; Lee, Tiffany; Daily, Michael D.; Covey, Douglas F.; Schlesinger, Paul H.; Baker, Nathan A.; Ory, Daniel S.

    2013-10-15

    Although the majority of free cellular cholesterol is present in the plasma membrane, cholesterol homeostasis is principally regulated through sterol-sensing proteins that reside in the cholesterol-poor endoplasmic reticulum (ER). In response to acute cholesterol loading or depletion, there is rapid equilibration between the ER and plasma membrane cholesterol pools, suggesting a biophysical model in which the availability of plasma membrane cholesterol for trafficking to internal membranes modulates ER membrane behavior. Previous studies have predominantly examined cholesterol availability in terms of binding to extramembrane acceptors, but have provided limited insight into the structural changes underlying cholesterol activation. In this study, we use both molecular dynamics simulations and experimental membrane systems to examine the behavior of cholesterol in membrane bilayers. We find that cholesterol depth within the bilayer provides a reasonable structural metric for cholesterol availability and that this is correlated with cholesterol-acceptor binding. Further, the distribution of cholesterol availability in our simulations is continuous rather than divided into distinct available and unavailable pools. This data provide support for a revised cholesterol activation model in which activation is driven not by saturation of membrane-cholesterol interactions but rather by bulk membrane remodeling that reduces membrane-cholesterol affinity.

  1. Crystal Structure of Dengue Virus Type 1 Envelope Protein in the Postfusion Conformation and Its Implications for Membrane Fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nayak, Vinod; Dessau, Moshe; Kucera, Kaury; Anthony, Karen; Ledizet, Michel; Modis, Yorgo; (Yale); (L2 Diagnostics)

    2009-07-31

    Dengue virus relies on a conformational change in its envelope protein, E, to fuse the viral lipid membrane with the endosomal membrane and thereby deliver the viral genome into the cytosol. We have determined the crystal structure of a soluble fragment E (sE) of dengue virus type 1 (DEN-1). The protein is in the postfusion conformation even though it was not exposed to a lipid membrane or detergent. At the domain I-domain III interface, 4 polar residues form a tight cluster that is absent in other flaviviral postfusion structures. Two of these residues, His-282 and His-317, are conserved in flaviviruses and are part of the 'pH sensor' that triggers the fusogenic conformational change in E, at the reduced pH of the endosome. In the fusion loop, Phe-108 adopts a distinct conformation, forming additional trimer contacts and filling the bowl-shaped concavity observed at the tip of the DEN-2 sE trimer.

  2. Membrane-on-a-Chip : Microstructured Silicon/Silicon-Dioxide Chips for High-Throughput Screening of Membrane Transport and Viral Membrane Fusion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kusters, Ilja; van Oijen, Antoine M.; Driessen, Arnold J. M.

    2014-01-01

    Screening of transport processes across biological membranes is hindered by the challenge to establish fragile supported lipid bilayers and the difficulty to determine at which side of the membrane reactants reside. Here, we present a method for the generation of suspended lipid bilayers with physio

  3. Both phototropin 1 and 2 localize on the chloroplast outer membrane with distinct localization activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Sam-Geun; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Kikuchi, Shingo; Nakai, Masato; Nagatani, Akira; Wada, Masamitsu

    2013-01-01

    Chloroplasts change their position to adapt cellular activities to fluctuating environmental light conditions. Phototropins (phot1 and phot2 in Arabidopsis) are plant-specific blue light photoreceptors that perceive changes in light intensity and direction, and mediate actin-based chloroplast photorelocation movements. Both phot1 and phot2 regulate the chloroplast accumulation response, while phot2 is mostly responsible for the regulation of the avoidance response. Although it has been widely accepted that distinct intracellular localizations of phototropins are implicated in the specificity, the mechanism underlying the phot2-specific avoidance response has remained elusive. In this study, we examined the relationship of the phot2 localization pattern to the chloroplast photorelocation movement. First, the fusion of a nuclear localization signal with phot2, which effectively reduced the amount of phot2 in the cytoplasm, retained the activity for both the accumulation and avoidance responses, indicating that membrane-localized phot2 but not cytoplasmic phot2 is functional to mediate the responses. Importantly, some fractions of phot2, and of phot1 to a lesser extent, were localized on the chloroplast outer membrane. Moreover, the deletion of the C-terminal region of phot2, which was previously shown to be defective in blue light-induced Golgi localization and avoidance response, affected the localization pattern on the chloroplast outer membrane. Taken together, these results suggest that dynamic phot2 trafficking from the plasma membrane to the Golgi apparatus and the chloroplast outer membrane might be involved in the avoidance response.

  4. Development of active-transport membrane devices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Laciak, D.V.

    1994-07-01

    This report introduces the concept of Air Products` AT membranes for the separation of NH{sub 3} and CO{sub 2} from process gas streams and presents results from the first year fabrication concept development studies.

  5. [Bactericidal Activity of Constructed Recombinant Fusion Protein Pheromonicin-CT].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Huan; Zuo, Yue-wen; Qiu, Xiao-qing

    2015-11-01

    To construct engineering peptide pheromonicin-Clostrzaum tretant krn-ui), and to test its bactericidal activity. We amplified the gene of variable regions from hybridoma cells which secreted monoclonal antibody (mAb) against antigen in the membrane of Clostridium tetani and linked the small antibody mimetic to the channel-forming domain of colicin Ia to create Ph-CT. The Ph-CT was purified by CM sepharose ion-exchange column. Its in vitro antibacterial activity was evaluated by colony culture with different doses of Ph-CT (final concentration 2, 4, 8, and 16 microg/mL,respectively). Then we inoculated culture medium with CT strains and different doses of Ph-CT (final concentration of 4 and 16 microg/mL). The in vivo antibacterial activity of Ph-CT was evaluated by cumulative survival of mice. After 16 hours' anaerobic culture, the mice was treated with filtered CT medium or CT medium. We constructed Ph-CT successfully. CT colonies appeared in the CT medium treated with Ph-CT (2, 4 microg/mL), while no colony appeared in the CT medium treated with Ph-CT (8, 16 microg/mL). All mice survived when they were injected with filtered CT medium treated with Ph-CT (4, 16 microg/mL) and CT medium treated with Ph-CT (16 microg/mL). Three (50%) mice survived when they were injected with CT medium treated with Ph-CT (4 microg/mL). All mice in the control groups died after CT infections. Ph-CT may be of value as antibiotics against Clostridium tetani.

  6. Active membrane having uniform physico-chemically functionalized ion channels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerald, II, Rex E; Ruscic, Katarina J; Sears, Devin N; Smith, Luis J; Klingler, Robert J; Rathke, Jerome W

    2012-09-24

    The present invention relates to a physicochemically-active porous membrane for electrochemical cells that purports dual functions: an electronic insulator (separator) and a unidirectional ion-transporter (electrolyte). The electrochemical cell membrane is activated for the transport of ions by contiguous ion coordination sites on the interior two-dimensional surfaces of the trans-membrane unidirectional pores. One dimension of the pore surface has a macroscopic length (1 nm-1000 .mu.m) and is directed parallel to the direction of an electric field, which is produced between the cathode and the anode electrodes of an electrochemical cell. The membrane material is designed to have physicochemical interaction with ions. Control of the extent of the interactions between the ions and the interior pore walls of the membrane and other materials, chemicals, or structures contained within the pores provides adjustability of the ionic conductivity of the membrane.

  7. Inhibitory effect of mTOR activator MHY1485 on autophagy: suppression of lysosomal fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yeon Ja Choi

    Full Text Available Autophagy is a major degradative process responsible for the disposal of cytoplasmic proteins and dysfunctional organelles via the lysosomal pathway. During the autophagic process, cells form double-membraned vesicles called autophagosomes that sequester disposable materials in the cytoplasm and finally fuse with lysosomes. In the present study, we investigated the inhibition of autophagy by a synthesized compound, MHY1485, in a culture system by using Ac2F rat hepatocytes. Autophagic flux was measured to evaluate the autophagic activity. Autophagosomes were visualized in Ac2F cells transfected with AdGFP-LC3 by live-cell confocal microscopy. In addition, activity of mTOR, a major regulatory protein of autophagy, was assessed by western blot and docking simulation using AutoDock 4.2. In the result, treatment with MHY1485 suppressed the basal autophagic flux, and this inhibitory effect was clearly confirmed in cells under starvation, a strong physiological inducer of autophagy. The levels of p62 and beclin-1 did not show significant change after treatment with MHY1485. Decreased co-localization of autophagosomes and lysosomes in confocal microscopic images revealed the inhibitory effect of MHY1485 on lysosomal fusion during starvation-induced autophagy. These effects of MHY1485 led to the accumulation of LC3II and enlargement of the autophagosomes in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Furthermore, MHY1485 induced mTOR activation and correspondingly showed a higher docking score than PP242, a well-known ATP-competitive mTOR inhibitor, in docking simulation. In conclusion, MHY1485 has an inhibitory effect on the autophagic process by inhibition of fusion between autophagosomes and lysosomes leading to the accumulation of LC3II protein and enlarged autophagosomes. MHY1485 also induces mTOR activity, providing a possibility for another regulatory mechanism of autophagy by the MHY compound. The significance of this study is the finding of a novel

  8. Fusion of liposomes with the plasma membrane of epithelial cells: Fate of incorporated lipids as followed by freeze fracture and autoradiography of plastic sections

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Knoll, G.; Burger, K.N.J.; Bron, R.; van Meer, G.; Verkleij, A.J.

    1988-01-01

    The fusion of liposomes with the plasma membrane of influenza virus-infected monolayers of an epithelial cell line, Madin-Darby canine kidney cells (van Meer et al., 1985. Biochemistry, 24: 3593-3602), has been analyzed by morphological techniques. The distribution of liposomal lipids over the apica

  9. Effect of components in activated sludge liquor on membrane fouling in a submerged membrane bioreactor

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YU Shui-li; ZHAO Fang-bo; ZHANG Xiao-hui; JING Guo-lin; ZHEN Xiang-hua

    2006-01-01

    By a membrane bioreactor with a settle tank in long-term operation and batch experiments, the effects of flocs, soluble microorganism products (SMPs) and metal ions in activated sludge liquor on membrane fouling were investigated. The results showed that foulants absorbed each other and formed a fouling layer as a "second membrane" influencing the permeability of the membrane.The "gel layer" caused by SMPs and "cake layer" by flocs showed great differences in morphology by analysis of scanning electron microscope and atomic force microscope. The "gel layer" was more compact and of poor permeability. When the membrane flux was MPa/h). SMPs played very important roles on membrane fouling. In the bu1king sludge, with SMPs increasing, the rate of membrane fouling (0.0132 MPa/h) was faster. While after flocculation of the SMPs, the rate of fouling decreased to 0.0034 MPa/h. Flocs could keep holes in their overlaps. They could alleviate membrane fouling by preventing the SMPs directly attaching on membrane surface.

  10. Cell volume and membrane stretch independently control K+ channel activity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bomholtz, Sofia Hammami; Willumsen, Niels J; Olsen, Hervør L

    2009-01-01

    A number of potassium channels including members of the KCNQ family and the Ca(2+) activated IK and SK, but not BK, are strongly and reversibly regulated by small changes in cell volume. It has been argued that this general regulation is mediated through sensitivity to changes in membrane stretch...... was not affected by membrane stretch. The results indicate that (1) activation of BK channels by local membrane stretch is not mimicked by membrane stress induced by cell swelling, and (2) activation of KCNQ1 channels by cell volume increase is not mediated by local tension in the cell membrane. We conclude....... To test this hypothesis we have studied the regulation of KCNQ1 and BK channels after expression in Xenopus oocytes. Results from cell-attached patch clamp studies (approximately 50 microm(2) macropatches) in oocytes expressing BK channels demonstrate that the macroscopic volume-insensitive BK current...

  11. In Vivo Efficacy of Measles Virus Fusion Protein-Derived Peptides Is Modulated by the Properties of Self-Assembly and Membrane Residence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figueira, T N; Palermo, L M; Veiga, A S; Huey, D; Alabi, C A; Santos, N C; Welsch, J C; Mathieu, C; Horvat, B; Niewiesk, S; Moscona, A; Castanho, M A R B; Porotto, M

    2017-01-01

    Measles virus (MV) infection is undergoing resurgence and remains one of the leading causes of death among young children worldwide despite the availability of an effective measles vaccine. MV infects its target cells by coordinated action of the MV hemagglutinin (H) and fusion (F) envelope glycoproteins; upon receptor engagement by H, the prefusion F undergoes a structural transition, extending and inserting into the target cell membrane and then refolding into a postfusion structure that fuses the viral and cell membranes. By interfering with this structural transition of F, peptides derived from the heptad repeat (HR) regions of F can inhibit MV infection at the entry stage. In previous work, we have generated potent MV fusion inhibitors by dimerizing the F-derived peptides and conjugating them to cholesterol. We have shown that prophylactic intranasal administration of our lead fusion inhibitor efficiently protects from MV infection in vivo We show here that peptides tagged with lipophilic moieties self-assemble into nanoparticles until they reach the target cells, where they are integrated into cell membranes. The self-assembly feature enhances biodistribution and the half-life of the peptides, while integration into the target cell membrane increases fusion inhibitor potency. These factors together modulate in vivo efficacy. The results suggest a new framework for developing effective fusion inhibitory peptides. Measles virus (MV) infection causes an acute illness that may be associated with infection of the central nervous system (CNS) and severe neurological disease. No specific treatment is available. We have shown that fusion-inhibitory peptides delivered intranasally provide effective prophylaxis against MV infection. We show here that specific biophysical properties regulate the in vivo efficacy of MV F-derived peptides. Copyright © 2016 American Society for Microbiology.

  12. Silicon active microvalves using buckled membranes for actuation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Popescu, D.O.; Dascula, Dan C.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt; Lammerink, Theodorus S.J.

    1995-01-01

    Design considerations and experiments have been made for obtaining a new type of active microvalves using silicon buckled membranes. The properties of the buckled membranes permitting to obtain high deflections and to actuate them more convenient are demonstrated. A thermal actuation using an

  13. Accelerator and Fusion Research Division: 1987 summary of activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1988-04-01

    An overview of the design and the initial studies for the Advanced Light Source is given. The research efforts for the Center for X-Ray Optics include x-ray imaging, multilayer mirror technology, x-ray sources and detectors, spectroscopy and scattering, and synchrotron radiation projects. The Accelerator Operations highlights include the research by users in nuclear physics, biology and medicine. The upgrade of the Bevalac is also discussed. The High Energy Physics Technology review includes the development of superconducting magnets and superconducting cables. A review of the Heavy-Ion Fusion Accelerator Research is also presented. The Magnetic Fusion Energy research included the development of ion sources, accelerators for negative ions, diagnostics, and theoretical plasma physics. (WRF)

  14. Effect of activated sludge properties and membrane operation conditions on fouling characteristics in membrane bioreactors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Hyeok; Zhang, Kai; Dionysiou, Dionysios D; Oerther, Daniel B; Sorial, George A

    2006-06-01

    Biofouling control is considered to be a major challenge in operating membrane bioreactors (MBRs) for the treatment of wastewater. This study examined the impact of biological, chemical, and physical properties of activated sludge on membrane filtration performance in laboratory-scale MBRs. Sludges with different microbial communities were produced using pseudo-continuous stirred-tank reactors and pseudo-plug flow reactors treating a synthetic paper mill wastewater. Various filtration resistances were used to investigate membrane fouling characteristics, and molecular biology tools targeting 16S ribosomal DNA gene sequences were used to identify predominant bacterial populations in the sludges or attached to the fouled membranes. Filtration experiments using axenic cultures of Escherichia coli, Acinetobacter calcoaceticus, and Gordonia amarae were also performed to better understand the initiation and development of biofouling. The results showed that the tendency of membranes to biofoul depended upon membrane operating conditions as well as the properties of the activated sludge in the MBR systems. Specific bacterial populations, which were not dominant in the activated sludges, were selectively accumulated on the membrane surface leading to the development of irreversible biofouling.

  15. Silver-enhanced block copolymer membranes with biocidal activity

    KAUST Repository

    Madhavan, Poornima

    2014-11-12

    Silver nanoparticles were deposited on the surface and pore walls of block copolymer membranes with highly ordered pore structure. Pyridine blocks constitute the pore surfaces, complexing silver ions and promoting a homogeneous distribution. Nanoparticles were then formed by reduction with sodium borohydride. The morphology varied with the preparation conditions (pH and silver ion concentration), as confirmed by field emission scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Silver has a strong biocide activity, which for membranes can bring the advantage of minimizing the growth of bacteria and formation of biofilm. The membranes with nanoparticles prepared under different pH values and ion concentrations were incubated with Pseudomonas aeruginosa and compared with the control. The strongest biocidal activity was achieved with membranes containing membranes prepared under pH 9. Under these conditions, the best distribution with small particle size was observed by microscopy.

  16. An Extended Membrane System with Active Membranes to Solve Automatic Fuzzy Clustering Problems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Hong; Wang, Jun; Shi, Peng; Pérez-Jiménez, Mario J; Riscos-Núñez, Agustín

    2016-05-01

    This paper focuses on automatic fuzzy clustering problem and proposes a novel automatic fuzzy clustering method that employs an extended membrane system with active membranes that has been designed as its computing framework. The extended membrane system has a dynamic membrane structure; since membranes can evolve, it is particularly suitable for processing the automatic fuzzy clustering problem. A modification of a differential evolution (DE) mechanism was developed as evolution rules for objects according to membrane structure and object communication mechanisms. Under the control of both the object's evolution-communication mechanism and the membrane evolution mechanism, the extended membrane system can effectively determine the most appropriate number of clusters as well as the corresponding optimal cluster centers. The proposed method was evaluated over 13 benchmark problems and was compared with four state-of-the-art automatic clustering methods, two recently developed clustering methods and six classification techniques. The comparison results demonstrate the superiority of the proposed method in terms of effectiveness and robustness.

  17. Fusion-activated Ca(2+ entry: an "active zone" of elevated Ca(2+ during the postfusion stage of lamellar body exocytosis in rat type II pneumocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pika Miklavc

    Full Text Available Ca(2+ is essential for vesicle fusion with the plasma membrane in virtually all types of regulated exocytoses. However, in contrast to the well-known effects of a high cytoplasmic Ca(2+ concentration ([Ca(2+](c in the prefusion phase, the occurrence and significance of Ca(2+ signals in the postfusion phase have not been described before.We studied isolated rat alveolar type II cells using previously developed imaging techniques. These cells release pulmonary surfactant, a complex of lipids and proteins, from secretory vesicles (lamellar bodies in an exceptionally slow, Ca(2+- and actin-dependent process. Measurements of fusion pore formation by darkfield scattered light intensity decrease or FM 1-43 fluorescence intensity increase were combined with analysis of [Ca(2+](c by ratiometric Fura-2 or Fluo-4 fluorescence measurements. We found that the majority of single lamellar body fusion events were followed by a transient (t(1/2 of decay = 3.2 s rise of localized [Ca(2+](c originating at the site of lamellar body fusion. [Ca(2+](c increase followed with a delay of approximately 0.2-0.5 s (method-dependent and in the majority of cases this signal propagated throughout the cell (at approximately 10 microm/s. Removal of Ca(2+ from, or addition of Ni(2+ to the extracellular solution, strongly inhibited these [Ca(2+](c transients, whereas Ca(2+ store depletion with thapsigargin had no effect. Actin-GFP fluorescence around fused LBs increased several seconds after the rise of [Ca(2+](c. Both effects were reduced by the non-specific Ca(2+ channel blocker SKF96365.Fusion-activated Ca(2+entry (FACE is a new mechanism that leads to [Ca(2+](c transients at the site of vesicle fusion. Substantial evidence from this and previous studies indicates that fusion-activated Ca(2+ entry enhances localized surfactant release from type II cells, but it may also play a role for compensatory endocytosis and other cellular functions.

  18. Active rehabilitation in a pediatric extracorporeal membrane oxygenation patient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zebuhr, Carleen; Sinha, Amit; Skillman, Heather; Buckvold, Shannon

    2014-05-01

    Decreased intensive care unit (ICU) mortality has led to an increase in ICU morbidity. ICU-induced immobilization plays a major role in this morbidity. Recently, ICU mobility has been shown to be safe and effective in adolescent and adult patients. We report the successful rehabilitation of an 8-year-old boy with severe acute respiratory distress syndrome on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. A child who is critically ill may safely perform active rehabilitation while on venovenous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. The gains achieved through active rehabilitation and optimal nutrition can facilitate recovery from severe acute respiratory distress syndrome in select pediatric patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation.

  19. The role of mitochondrial fusion and StAR phosphorylation in the regulation of StAR activity and steroidogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, Ana F; Orlando, Ulises; Helfenberger, Katia E; Poderoso, Cecilia; Podesta, Ernesto J

    2015-06-15

    The steroidogenic acute regulatory (StAR) protein regulates the rate-limiting step in steroidogenesis, i.e. the delivery of cholesterol from the outer (OMM) to the inner (IMM) mitochondrial membrane. StAR is a 37-kDa protein with an N-terminal mitochondrial targeting sequence that is cleaved off during mitochondrial import to yield 30-kDa intramitochondrial StAR. StAR acts exclusively on the OMM and its activity is proportional to how long it remains on the OMM. However, the precise fashion and the molecular mechanism in which StAR remains on the OMM have not been elucidated yet. In this work we will discuss the role of mitochondrial fusion and StAR phosphorylation by the extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1/2 (ERK1/2) as part of the mechanism that regulates StAR retention on the OMM and activity.

  20. A minimal phycobilisome: fusion and chromophorylation of the truncated core-membrane linker and phycocyanin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Kun; Zeng, Xiao-Li; Yang, Yi; Wang, Zhi-Bin; Wu, Xian-Jun; Zhou, Ming; Noy, Dror; Scheer, Hugo; Zhao, Kai-Hong

    2012-07-01

    Phycobilisomes, the light-harvesting antennas in cyanobacteria and red algae, consist of an allophycocyanin core that is attached to the membrane via a core-membrane linker, and rods comprised of phycocyanin and often also phycoerythrin or phycoerythrocyanin. Phycobiliproteins show excellent energy transfer among the chromophores that renders them biomarkers with large Stokes-shifts absorbing over most of the visible spectrum and into the near infrared. Their application is limited, however, due to covalent binding of the chromophores and by solubility problems. We report construction of a water-soluble minimal chromophore-binding unit of the red-absorbing and fluorescing core-membrane linker. This was fused to minimal chromophore-binding units of phycocyanin. After double chromophorylation with phycocyanobilin, in E. coli, the fused phycobiliproteins absorbed light in the range of 610-660nm, and fluoresced at ~670nm, similar to phycobilisomes devoid of phycoerythr(ocyan)in. The fused phycobiliprotein could also be doubly chromophorylated with phycoerythrobilin, resulting in a chromoprotein absorbing around 540-575nm, and fluorescing at ~585nm. The broad absorptions and the large Stokes shifts render these chromoproteins candidates for imaging; they may also be helpful in studying phycobilisome assembly.

  1. Characterization of the activation of small GTPases by their GEFs on membranes using artificial membrane tethering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peurois, François; Veyron, Simon; Ferrandez, Yann; Ladid, Ilham; Benabdi, Sarah; Zeghouf, Mahel; Peyroche, Gérald; Cherfils, Jacqueline

    2017-02-14

    Attachment of active, GTP-bound small GTPases to membranes by post-translational lipid modifications is pivotal for their ability to process and propagate information in cells. However, generating and manipulating lipidated GTPases has remained difficult, which has limited our quantitative understanding of their activation by GEFs and their termination by GAPs. Here we replaced the lipid modification by a histidine tag in eleven full-length, human small GTPases belonging to the Arf, Rho and Rab families, which allowed to tether them to nickel-lipid containing membranes and characterize the kinetics of their activation by GEFs. Remarkably this strategy uncovered large effects of membranes on the efficiency and/or specificity in all systems studied. Notably, it recapitulated the release of autoinhibition of Arf1, Arf3, Arf4, Arf5 and Arf6 GTPases by membranes and revealed that all isoforms are efficiently activated by two GEFs with different regulatory regimes, ARNO and Brag2. It demonstrated that membranes stimulate the GEF activity of Trio towards RhoG by ≈30 fold and Rac1 by ≈10 fold, and uncovered a previously unknown broader specificity towards RhoA and Cdc42 that was undetectable in solution. Finally, it demonstrated that the exceptional affinity of the bacterial RabGEF DrrA for the phosphoinositide PI(4)P delimits the activation of Rab1 to the immediate vicinity of the membrane-bound GEF. Our study thus validates the histidine tag strategy as a potent and simple means to mimic small GTPases lipidation, which opens broad perspectives of applications to uncover regulations brought about by membranes.

  2. Enhanced bactericidal potency of nanoliposomes by modification of the fusion activity between liposomes and bacterium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ma YF

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Yufan Ma,1 Zhao Wang,1,2 Wen Zhao,1 Tingli Lu,1 Rutao Wang,1,2 Qibing Mei,1 Tao Chen1–3 1Key Laboratory for Space Bioscience and Biotechnology, School of Life Sciences, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, People's Republic of China; 2Shaanxi Liposome Research Center, Xi'an, Shaanxi, People's Republic of China; 3Xi'an Libang Pharmaceuticals Co, Ltd, Xi'an, People's Republic of China Background: Pseudomonas aeruginosa represents a good model of antibiotic resistance. These organisms have an outer membrane with a low level of permeability to drugs that is often combined with multidrug efflux pumps, enzymatic inactivation of the drug, or alteration of its molecular target. The acute and growing problem of antibiotic resistance of Pseudomonas to conventional antibiotics made it imperative to develop new liposome formulations to overcome these mechanisms, and investigate the fusion between liposome and bacterium. Methods: The rigidity, stability and charge properties of phospholipid vesicles were modified by varying the cholesterol, 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylethanolamine (DOPE, and negatively charged lipids 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoglycerol sodium salt (DMPG, 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phopho-L-serine sodium salt (DMPS, 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphate monosodium salt (DMPA, nature phosphatidylserine sodium salt from brain and nature phosphatidylinositol sodium salt from soybean concentrations in liposomes. Liposomal fusion with intact bacteria was monitored using a lipid-mixing assay. Results: It was discovered that the fluid liposomes-bacterium fusion is not dependent on liposomal size and lamellarity. A similar degree of fusion was observed for liposomes with a particle size from 100 to 800 nm. The fluidity of liposomes is an essential pre-request for liposomes fusion with bacteria. Fusion was almost completely inhibited by incorporation of cholesterol into fluid liposomes. The increase in the

  3. Lipase immobilized catalytically active membrane for synthesis of lauryl stearate in a pervaporation membrane reactor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Weidong; Qing, Weihua; Ren, Zhongqi; Li, Wei; Chen, Jiangrong

    2014-11-01

    A composite catalytically active membrane immobilized with Candida rugosa lipase has been prepared by immersion phase inversion technique for enzymatic synthesis of lauryl stearate in a pervaporation membrane reactor. SEM images showed that a "sandwich-like" membrane structure with a porous lipase-PVA catalytic layer uniformly coated on a polyvinyl alcohol (PVA)/polyethersulfone (PES) bilayer was obtained. Optimum conditions for lipase immobilization in the catalytic layer were determined. The membrane was proved to exhibit superior thermal stability, pH stability and reusability than free lipase under similar conditions. In the case of pervaporation coupled synthesis of lauryl stearate, benefited from in-situ water removal by the membrane, a conversion enhancement of approximately 40% was achieved in comparison to the equilibrium conversion obtained in batch reactors. In addition to conversion enhancement, it was also found that excess water removal by the catalytically active membrane appears to improve activity of the lipase immobilized. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. A soluble form of Epstein-Barr virus gH/gL inhibits EBV-induced membrane fusion and does not function in fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rowe, Cynthia L. [Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL 60611 (United States); Connolly, Sarah A. [Department of Health Sciences, DePaul University, Chicago, IL 60614 (United States); Chen, Jia [Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL 60611 (United States); Jardetzky, Theodore S. [Department of Structural Biology, Stanford University School of Medicine, 371 Serra Mall, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States); Longnecker, Richard, E-mail: r-longnecker@northwestern.edu [Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL 60611 (United States)

    2013-02-05

    We investigated whether soluble EBV gH/gL (sgH/gL) functions in fusion and made a series of truncations of gH/gL domains based on the gH/gL crystal structure. We found sgH/gL failed to mediate cell-cell fusion both when co-expressed with the other entry glycoproteins and when added exogenously to fusion assays. Interestingly, sgH/gL inhibited cell-cell fusion in a dose dependent manner when co-expressed. sgH/gL from HSV was unable to inhibit EBV fusion, suggesting the inhibition was specific to EBV gH/gL. sgH/gL stably binds gp42, but not gB nor gH/gL. The domain mutants, DI/gL, DI-II/gL and DI-II-III/gL were unable to bind gp42. Instead, DI-II/gL, DI-II-III/gL and sgH/gL but not DI/gL decreased the expression of gp42, resulting in decreased overall fusion. Overall, our results suggest that domain IV may be required for proper folding and the transmembrane domain and cytoplasmic tail of EBV gH/gL are required for the most efficient fusion.

  5. A soluble form of Epstein-Barr virus gH/gL inhibits EBV-induced membrane fusion and does not function in fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowe, Cynthia L; Connolly, Sarah A; Chen, Jia; Jardetzky, Theodore S; Longnecker, Richard

    2013-02-05

    We investigated whether soluble EBV gH/gL (sgH/gL) functions in fusion and made a series of truncations of gH/gL domains based on the gH/gL crystal structure. We found sgH/gL failed to mediate cell-cell fusion both when co-expressed with the other entry glycoproteins and when added exogenously to fusion assays. Interestingly, sgH/gL inhibited cell-cell fusion in a dose dependent manner when co-expressed. sgH/gL from HSV was unable to inhibit EBV fusion, suggesting the inhibition was specific to EBV gH/gL. sgH/gL stably binds gp42, but not gB nor gH/gL. The domain mutants, DI/gL, DI-II/gL and DI-II-III/gL were unable to bind gp42. Instead, DI-II/gL, DI-II-III/gL and sgH/gL but not DI/gL decreased the expression of gp42, resulting in decreased overall fusion. Overall, our results suggest that domain IV may be required for proper folding and the transmembrane domain and cytoplasmic tail of EBV gH/gL are required for the most efficient fusion.

  6. Synthetic fusion-protein containing domains of Bt Cry1Ac and Allium sativum lectin (ASAL) conferred enhanced insecticidal activity against major lepidopteran pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tajne, Sunita; Boddupally, Dayakar; Sadumpati, Vijayakumar; Vudem, Dashavantha Reddy; Khareedu, Venkateswara Rao

    2014-02-10

    Different transgenic crop plants, developed with δ-endotoxins of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) and mannose-specific plant lectins, exhibited significant protection against chewing and sucking insects. In the present study, a synthetic gene (cry-asal) encoding the fusion-protein having 488 amino acids, comprising DI and DII domains from Bt Cry1Ac and Allium sativum agglutinin (ASAL), was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. Ligand blot analysis disclosed that the fusion-protein could bind to more number of receptors of brush border membrane vesicle (BBMV) proteins of Helicoverpa armigera. Artificial diet bioassays revealed that 0.025 μg/g and 0.50 μg/g of fusion-protein were sufficient to cause 100% mortality in Pectinophora gossypiella and H. armigera insects, respectively. As compared to Cry1Ac, the fusion-protein showed enhanced (8-fold and 30-fold) insecticidal activity against two major lepidopteran pests. Binding of fusion-protein to the additional receptors in the midgut cells of insects is attributable to its enhanced entomotoxic effect. The synthetic gene, first of its kind, appears promising and might serve as a potential candidate for engineering crop plants against major insect pests.

  7. Calculating Transition Energy Barriers and Characterizing Activation States for Steps of Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryham, Rolf J; Klotz, Thomas S; Yao, Lihan; Cohen, Fredric S

    2016-03-08

    We use continuum mechanics to calculate an entire least energy pathway of membrane fusion, from stalk formation, to pore creation, and through fusion pore enlargement. The model assumes that each structure in the pathway is axially symmetric. The static continuum stalk structure agrees quantitatively with experimental stalk architecture. Calculations show that in a stalk, the distal monolayer is stretched and the stored stretching energy is significantly less than the tilt energy of an unstretched distal monolayer. The string method is used to determine the energy of the transition barriers that separate intermediate states and the dynamics of two bilayers as they pass through them. Hemifusion requires a small amount of energy independently of lipid composition, while direct transition from a stalk to a fusion pore without a hemifusion intermediate is highly improbable. Hemifusion diaphragm expansion is spontaneous for distal monolayers containing at least two lipid components, given sufficiently negative diaphragm spontaneous curvature. Conversely, diaphragms formed from single-component distal monolayers do not expand without the continual injection of energy. We identify a diaphragm radius, below which central pore expansion is spontaneous. For larger diaphragms, prior studies have shown that pore expansion is not axisymmetric, and here our calculations supply an upper bound for the energy of the barrier against pore formation. The major energy-requiring deformations in the steps of fusion are: widening of a hydrophobic fissure in bilayers for stalk formation, splay within the expanding hemifusion diaphragm, and fissure widening initiating pore formation in a hemifusion diaphragm.

  8. Kernel-Based Sensor Fusion With Application to Audio-Visual Voice Activity Detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dov, David; Talmon, Ronen; Cohen, Israel

    2016-12-01

    In this paper, we address the problem of multiple view data fusion in the presence of noise and interferences. Recent studies have approached this problem using kernel methods, by relying particularly on a product of kernels constructed separately for each view. From a graph theory point of view, we analyze this fusion approach in a discrete setting. More specifically, based on a statistical model for the connectivity between data points, we propose an algorithm for the selection of the kernel bandwidth, a parameter, which, as we show, has important implications on the robustness of this fusion approach to interferences. Then, we consider the fusion of audio-visual speech signals measured by a single microphone and by a video camera pointed to the face of the speaker. Specifically, we address the task of voice activity detection, i.e., the detection of speech and non-speech segments, in the presence of structured interferences such as keyboard taps and office noise. We propose an algorithm for voice activity detection based on the audio-visual signal. Simulation results show that the proposed algorithm outperforms competing fusion and voice activity detection approaches. In addition, we demonstrate that a proper selection of the kernel bandwidth indeed leads to improved performance.

  9. Modeling and vibration control of an active membrane mirror

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruggiero, Eric J.; Inman, Daniel J.

    2009-09-01

    The future of space satellite technology lies in ultra-large mirrors and radar apertures for significant improvements in imaging and communication bandwidths. The availability of optical-quality membranes drives a parallel effort for structural models that can capture the dominant dynamics of large, ultra-flexible satellite payloads. Unfortunately, the inherent flexibility of membrane mirrors wreaks havoc with the payload's on-orbit stability and maneuverability. One possible means of controlling these undesirable dynamics is by embedding active piezoelectric ceramics near the boundary of the membrane mirror. In doing so, active feedback control can be used to eliminate detrimental vibration, perform static shape control, and evaluate the health of the structure. The overall motivation of the present work is to design a control system using distributed bimorph actuators to eliminate any detrimental vibration of the membrane mirror. As a basis for this study, a piezoceramic wafer was attached in a bimorph configuration near the boundary of a tensioned rectangular membrane sample. A finite element model of the system was developed to capture the relevant system dynamics from 0 to 300 Hz. The finite element model was compared against experimental results, and fair agreement found. Using the validated finite element models, structural control using linear quadratic regulator control techniques was then used to numerically demonstrate effective vibration control. Typical results show that less than 12 V of actuation voltage is required to eliminate detrimental vibration of the membrane samples in less than 15 ms. The functional gains of the active system are also derived and presented. These spatially descriptive control terms dictate favorable regions within the membrane domain for placing sensors and can be used as a design guideline for structural control applications. The results of the present work demonstrate that thin plate theory is an appropriate modeling

  10. Measurements of fusion neutron yields by neutron activation technique: Uncertainty due to the uncertainty on activation cross-sections

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stankunas, Gediminas, E-mail: gediminas.stankunas@lei.lt [Lithuanian Energy Institute, Laboratory of Nuclear Installation Safety, Breslaujos str. 3, LT-44403 Kaunas (Lithuania); EUROfusion Consortium, JET, Culham Science Centre, Abingdon OX14 3DB (United Kingdom); Batistoni, Paola [ENEA, Via E. Fermi, 45, 00044 Frascati, Rome (Italy); EUROfusion Consortium, JET, Culham Science Centre, Abingdon OX14 3DB (United Kingdom); Sjöstrand, Henrik; Conroy, Sean [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Uppsala University, PO Box 516, SE-75120 Uppsala (Sweden); EUROfusion Consortium, JET, Culham Science Centre, Abingdon OX14 3DB (United Kingdom)

    2015-07-11

    The neutron activation technique is routinely used in fusion experiments to measure the neutron yields. This paper investigates the uncertainty on these measurements as due to the uncertainties on dosimetry and activation reactions. For this purpose, activation cross-sections were taken from the International Reactor Dosimetry and Fusion File (IRDFF-v1.05) in 640 groups ENDF-6 format for several reactions of interest for both 2.5 and 14 MeV neutrons. Activation coefficients (reaction rates) have been calculated using the neutron flux spectra at JET vacuum vessel, both for DD and DT plasmas, calculated by MCNP in the required 640-energy group format. The related uncertainties for the JET neutron spectra are evaluated as well using the covariance data available in the library. These uncertainties are in general small, but not negligible when high accuracy is required in the determination of the fusion neutron yields.

  11. Mitochondrial matrix delivery using MITO-Porter, a liposome-based carrier that specifies fusion with mitochondrial membranes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yasuzaki, Yukari; Yamada, Yuma [Laboratory for Molecular Design of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Hokkaido University, Kita-12, Nishi-6, Kita-ku, Sapporo 060-0812 (Japan); Harashima, Hideyoshi, E-mail: harasima@pharm.hokudai.ac.jp [Laboratory for Molecular Design of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Hokkaido University, Kita-12, Nishi-6, Kita-ku, Sapporo 060-0812 (Japan)

    2010-06-25

    Mitochondria are the principal producers of energy in cells of higher organisms. It was recently reported that mutations and defects in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) are associated with various mitochondrial diseases including a variety of neurodegenerative and neuromuscular diseases. Therefore, an effective mitochondrial gene therapy and diagnosis would be expected to have great medical benefits. To achieve this, therapeutic agents need to be delivered into the innermost mitochondrial space (mitochondrial matrix), which contains the mtDNA pool. We previously reported on the development of MITO-Porter, a liposome-based carrier that introduces macromolecular cargos into mitochondria via membrane fusion. In this study, we provide a demonstration of mitochondrial matrix delivery and the visualization of mitochondrial genes (mtDNA) in living cells using the MITO-Porter. We first prepared MITO-Porter containing encapsulated propidium iodide (PI), a fluorescent dye used to stain nucleic acids to detect mtDNA. We then confirmed the emission of red-fluorescence from PI by conjugation with mtDNA, when the carriers were incubated in the presence of isolated rat liver mitochondria. Finally, intracellular observation by confocal laser scanning microscopy clearly verified that the MITO-Porter delivered PI to the mitochondrial matrix.

  12. Activation Characteristics of Fuel Breeding Blanket Module in Fusion Driven Subcritical System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HUANG Qun-Ying; LI Jian-Gang; CHEN Yi-Xue

    2004-01-01

    @@ Shortage of energy resources and production of long-lived radioactivity wastes from fission reactors are among the main problems which will be faced in the world in the near future. The conceptual design of a fusion driven subcritical system (FDS) is underway in Institute of Plasma Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences. There are alternative designs for multi-functional blanket modules of the FDS, such as fuel breeding blanket module (FBB)to produce fuels for fission reactors, tritium breeding blanket module to produce the fuel, i.e. tritium, for fusion reactor and waste transmutation blanket module to try to permanently dispose of long-lived radioactivity wastes from fission reactors, etc. Activation of the fuel breeding blanket of the fusion driven subcritical system (FDS-FBB) by D-T fusion neutrons from the plasma and fission neutrons from the hybrid blanket are calculated and analysed under the neutron wall loading 0.5 MW/m2 and neutron fluence 15 MW. yr/m2. The neutron spectrum is calculated with the worldwide-used transport code MCNP/4C and activation calculations are carried out with the well known European inventory code FISPACT/99 with the latest released IAEA Fusion Evaluated Nuclear Data Library FENDL-2.0 and the ENDF/B-V uranium evaluated data. Induced radioactivities, dose rates and afterheats, etc, for different components of the FDS-FBB are compared and analysed.

  13. Herpes simplex virus glycoproteins gB and gH function in fusion between the virion envelope and the outer nuclear membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farnsworth, Aaron; Wisner, Todd W; Webb, Michael; Roller, Richard; Cohen, Gary; Eisenberg, Roselyn; Johnson, David C

    2007-06-12

    Herpesviruses must traverse the nuclear envelope to gain access to the cytoplasm and, ultimately, to exit cells. It is believed that herpesvirus nucleocapsids enter the perinuclear space by budding through the inner nuclear membrane (NM). To reach the cytoplasm these enveloped particles must fuse with the outer NM and the unenveloped capsids then acquire a second envelope in the trans-Golgi network. Little is known about the process by which herpesviruses virions fuse with the outer NM. Here we show that a herpes simplex virus (HSV) mutant lacking both the two putative fusion glycoproteins gB and gH failed to cross the nuclear envelope. Enveloped virions accumulated in the perinuclear space or in membrane vesicles that bulged into the nucleoplasm (herniations). By contrast, mutants lacking just gB or gH showed only minor or no defects in nuclear egress. We concluded that either HSV gB or gH can promote fusion between the virion envelope and the outer NM. It is noteworthy that fusion associated with HSV entry requires the cooperative action of both gB and gH, suggesting that the two types of fusion (egress versus entry) are dissimilar processes.

  14. Metabolic and environmental aspects of fusion reactor activation products: niobium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Easterly, C.E.; Shank, K.E.

    1977-11-01

    A summary of the metabolic and environmental aspects of niobium is presented. The toxicological symptoms from exposure to niobium are given, along with lethal concentration values for acute and chronic exposures. Existing human data are presented; animal uptake and retention data are analyzed for various routes of administration. Recommended metabolic values are also presented along with comments concerning their use and appropriateness. The natural distribution of niobium is given for freshwater, seawater, and the biosphere. Concentration factors and retention of /sup 95/Nb in the environment are discussed with reference to: plant retention via leaf absorption; plant retention via root uptake; uptake in terrestrial animals from plants; uptake in freshwater organisms; uptake in marine organisms; and movement in soil. Conclusions are drawn regarding needs for future work in these areas. This review was undertaken because niobium is expected to be a key metal in the development of commercial fusion reactors. It is recognized that niobium will likely not be used in the first generation reactors as a structural material but will appear as an alloy in such materials as superconducting wire.

  15. V-ATPase, ScNhxlp and Yeast Vacuole Fusion

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Quan-Sheng Qiu

    2012-01-01

    Membrane fusion is the last step in trafficking pathways during which membrane vesicles fuse with target organelles to deliver cargos.It is a central cellular reaction that plays important roles in signal transduction,protein sorting and subcellular compartmentation.Recent progress in understanding the roles of ion transporters in vacuole fusion in yeast is summanzed in this article.It is becoming increasingly evident that the vacuolar proton pump V-ATPase and vacuolar Na+/H+ antiporter ScNhxlp are key components of the vacuole fusion machinery in yeast.Yeast ScNhxlp regulates vacuole fusion by controlling the luminal pH.V-ATPases serve a dual role in vacuolar integrity in which they regulate both vacuole fusion and fission reactions in yeast.Fission defects are epistatic to fusion defects.Vacuole fission depends on the proton translocation activity of the V-ATPase; by contrast,the fusion reaction does not need the transport activity but requires the physical presence of the proton pump.Vo,the membrane-integral sector of the V-ATPase,forms trans-complexes between the opposing vacuoles in the terminal phase of vacuole fusion where the Vo trans-complexes build a continuous proteolipid channel at the fusion site to mediate the bilayer fusion.

  16. Potent Systemic Anticancer Activity of Adenovirally Expressed EGFR-Selective TRAIL Fusion Protein

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bremer, Edwin; van Dam, Gooitzen M.; de Bruyn, Marco; van Riezen, Manon; Dijkstra, Marike; Kamps, Gera; Helfrich, Wijnand; Haisma, Hidde

    2008-01-01

    Previously, we demonstrated potent tumor cell-selective pro-apoptotic activity of scFv425:sTRAIL, a recombinant fusion protein comprised of EGFR-directed antibody fragment (scFv425) genetically fused to human soluble TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (sTRAIL). Here, we report on the promising th

  17. The Activities of the European Consortium on Nuclear Data Development and Analysis for Fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fischer, U., E-mail: ulrich.fischer@kit.edu [Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute for Neutron Physic and Reactor Technology, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany); Avrigeanu, M.; Avrigeanu, V. [Horia Hulubei National Institute of Physics and Nuclear Engineering (IFIN-HH), RO-077125 Magurele (Romania); Cabellos, O. [Departamento de Ingenieria Nuclear, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, 28006 Madrid (Spain); Kodeli, I. [Jozef Stefan Institute (JSI), Jamova 39, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); Koning, A. [Nuclear Research and Consultancy Group (NRG), Westerduinweg 3, 1755 LE Petten (Netherlands); Konobeyev, A.Yu. [Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute for Neutron Physic and Reactor Technology, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany); Leeb, H. [Technische Universitaet Wien, Atominstitut, Wiedner Hauptstrasse 8–10, 1040 Wien (Austria); Rochman, D. [Nuclear Research and Consultancy Group (NRG), Westerduinweg 3, 1755 LE Petten (Netherlands); Pereslavtsev, P. [Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute for Neutron Physic and Reactor Technology, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany); Sauvan, P. [Universidad Nacional de Educacion a Distancia, C. Juan del Rosal, 12, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Sublet, J.-C. [Euratom/CCFE Fusion Association, Culham Science Centre, OX14 3DB (United Kingdom); Trkov, A. [Jozef Stefan Institute (JSI), Jamova 39, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); Dupont, E. [OECD Nuclear Energy Agency, Paris (France); Leichtle, D.; Izquierdo, J. [Fusion for Energy, Barcelona (Spain)

    2014-06-15

    This paper presents an overview of the activities of the European Consortium on Nuclear Data Development and Analysis for Fusion. The Consortium combines available European expertise to provide services for the generation, maintenance, and validation of nuclear data evaluations and data files relevant for ITER, IFMIF and DEMO, as well as codes and software tools required for related nuclear calculations.

  18. Historical evolution of nuclear energy systems development and related activities in JAERI. Fission, fusion, accelerator utilization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tone, Tatsuzo [Japan Atomic Energy Research Inst., Tokai, Ibaraki (Japan). Tokai Research Establishment

    2001-03-01

    Overview of the historical evolution of nuclear energy systems development and related activities in JAERI is given in the report. This report reviews the research and development for light water reactor, fast breeder reactor, high temperature gas reactor, fusion reactor and utilization of accelerator-based neutron source. (author)

  19. Lipid protrusions membrane softness, and enzymatic activity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Morten Østergaard; Høyrup, P.; Callisen, T.H.;

    2004-01-01

    The activity of phospholipase A(2) on lipid bilayers displays a characteristic lag burst behavior that has previously been shown to reflect the physical properties of the substrate. It has remained unclear which underlying molecular mechanism is responsible for this phenomenon. We propose here...... that protrusions of single lipid molecules out of the bilayer plane could provide such a mechanism. The proposal is supported by a combination of atomic-scale molecular dynamics simulations, theory, and experiments that have been performed in order to investigate the relationship between on the one side lipid...... protrusion modes and mechanical softness of phospholipid bilayers and on the other side the activity of enzymes acting on lipid bilayers composed of different unsaturated lipids. Specifically, our experiments show a correlation between the bilayer bending rigidity and the apparent Arrhenius activation energy...

  20. Cell volume and membrane stretch independently control K+ channel activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammami, Sofia; Willumsen, Niels J; Olsen, Hervør L; Morera, Francisco J; Latorre, Ramón; Klaerke, Dan A

    2009-05-15

    A number of potassium channels including members of the KCNQ family and the Ca(2+) activated IK and SK, but not BK, are strongly and reversibly regulated by small changes in cell volume. It has been argued that this general regulation is mediated through sensitivity to changes in membrane stretch. To test this hypothesis we have studied the regulation of KCNQ1 and BK channels after expression in Xenopus oocytes. Results from cell-attached patch clamp studies (approximately 50 microm(2) macropatches) in oocytes expressing BK channels demonstrate that the macroscopic volume-insensitive BK current increases with increasing negative hydrostatic pressure (suction) applied to the pipette. Thus, at a pipette pressure of -5.0 +/- 0.1 mmHg the increase amounted to 381 +/- 146% (mean +/- S.E.M., n = 6, P < 0.025). In contrast, in oocytes expressing the strongly volume-sensitive KCNQ1 channel, the current was not affected by membrane stretch. The results indicate that (1) activation of BK channels by local membrane stretch is not mimicked by membrane stress induced by cell swelling, and (2) activation of KCNQ1 channels by cell volume increase is not mediated by local tension in the cell membrane. We conclude that stretch and volume sensitivity can be considered two independent regulatory mechanisms.

  1. Fusion expression of Helicobacter pylori neutrophil-activating protein in E.coli

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Qiao-Zhen Kang; Guang-Cai Duan; Qing-Tang Fan; Yuan-Lin Xi

    2005-01-01

    AIM: To produce a recombinant protein rMBP-NAP, which was fusionally expressed by Helicobacter pylori(H pylori)neutrophil-activating protein (NAP) and E. coli maltosebinding protein (MBP) and to evaluate its immunoreactivity and immunogenicity.METHODS: Neutrophil-activating protein gene of H pylori (HP-napA) was subcloned from the recombinant plasmid pNEB-napA, and fused to MalE gene of expressing vector pMAL-c2x. The recombinant plasmid pMAL-c2x-napA was confirmed by restriction enzyme digestion, and then transformed into E. coli TB1. Fusion protein rMBP-NAP was induced by IPTG and identified by SDS-PAGE analysis.Soluble rMBP-NAP was purified by amylose affinity chromatography. Immunoreactivity and immunogenicity of the fusion protein were evaluated by animal experiment,Western blotting with human H pylori anti-sera.RESULTS: E.coli TB1 carrying recombinant plasmid pMAL-c2x-napA was constructed and led to a high efficiency cytosol expression of fusion protein rBMP -NAP when induced by IPTG.The molecular weight of rBMP-NAP was about 57 kD,accounting for 37.55% of the total protein in the sonicated supematant of E. coli TB1 (pMAL-c2x-napA). The purity of the fusion protein after one-step affinity chromatography was 94% and the yield was 100 mg per liter of bacterial culture.The purified fusion protein could be specifically recognized by both human anti-sera from clinical patients with H pylori infection and rabbit sera immunized by rMBP-NAP itself.CONCLUSION: Recombinant protein rMBP-NAP might be a novel antigen for vaccine development against H pylori.

  2. Truncation of the membrane-spanning domain of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 envelope glycoprotein defines elements required for fusion, incorporation, and infectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yue, Ling; Shang, Liang; Hunter, Eric

    2009-11-01

    The membrane-spanning domain (MSD) of the envelope (Env) glycoprotein from human (HIV) and simian immunodeficiency viruses plays a key role in anchoring the Env complex into the viral membrane but also contributes to its biological function in fusion and virus entry. In HIV type 1 (HIV-1), it has been predicted to span 27 amino acids, from lysine residue 681 to arginine 707, and encompasses an internal arginine at residue 694. By examining a series of C-terminal-truncation mutants of the HIV-1 gp41 glycoprotein that substituted termination codons for amino acids 682 to 708, we show that this entire region is required for efficient viral infection of target cells. Truncation to the arginine at residue 694 resulted in an Env complex that was secreted from the cells. In contrast, a region from residues 681 to 698, which contains highly conserved hydrophobic residues and glycine motifs and extends 4 amino acids beyond 694R, can effectively anchor the protein in the membrane, allow efficient transport to the plasma membrane, and mediate wild-type levels of cell-cell fusion. However, these fusogenic truncated Env mutants are inefficiently incorporated into budding virions. Based on the analysis of these mutants, a "snorkeling" model, in which the flanking charged amino acid residues at 681 and 694 are buried in the lipid while their side chains interact with polar head groups, is proposed for the HIV-1 MSD.

  3. Flagellar membrane fusion and protein exchange in trypanosomes; a new form of cell-cell communication? [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon Imhof

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Diverse structures facilitate direct exchange of proteins between cells, including plasmadesmata in plants and tunnelling nanotubes in bacteria and higher eukaryotes.  Here we describe a new mechanism of protein transfer, flagellar membrane fusion, in the unicellular parasite Trypanosoma brucei. When fluorescently tagged trypanosomes were co-cultured, a small proportion of double-positive cells were observed. The formation of double-positive cells was dependent on the presence of extracellular calcium and was enhanced by placing cells in medium supplemented with fresh bovine serum. Time-lapse microscopy revealed that double-positive cells arose by bidirectional protein exchange in the absence of nuclear transfer.  Furthermore, super-resolution microscopy showed that this process occurred in ≤1 minute, the limit of temporal resolution in these experiments. Both cytoplasmic and membrane proteins could be transferred provided they gained access to the flagellum. Intriguingly, a component of the RNAi machinery (Argonaute was able to move between cells, raising the possibility that small interfering RNAs are transported as cargo. Transmission electron microscopy showed that shared flagella contained two axonemes and two paraflagellar rods bounded by a single membrane. In some cases flagellar fusion was partial and interactions between cells were transient. In other cases fusion occurred along the entire length of the flagellum, was stable for several hours and might be irreversible. Fusion did not appear to be deleterious for cell function: paired cells were motile and could give rise to progeny while fused. The motile flagella of unicellular organisms are related to the sensory cilia of higher eukaryotes, raising the possibility that protein transfer between cells via cilia or flagella occurs more widely in nature.

  4. Large-Aperture Membrane Active Phased-Array Antennas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karasik, Boris; McGrath, William; Leduc, Henry

    2009-01-01

    Large-aperture phased-array microwave antennas supported by membranes are being developed for use in spaceborne interferometric synthetic aperture radar systems. There may also be terrestrial uses for such antennas supported on stationary membranes, large balloons, and blimps. These antennas are expected to have areal mass densities of about 2 kg/sq m, satisfying a need for lightweight alternatives to conventional rigid phased-array antennas, which have typical areal mass densities between 8 and 15 kg/sq m. The differences in areal mass densities translate to substantial differences in total mass in contemplated applications involving aperture areas as large as 400 sq m. A membrane phased-array antenna includes patch antenna elements in a repeating pattern. All previously reported membrane antennas were passive antennas; this is the first active membrane antenna that includes transmitting/receiving (T/R) electronic circuits as integral parts. Other integral parts of the antenna include a network of radio-frequency (RF) feed lines (more specifically, a corporate feed network) and of bias and control lines, all in the form of flexible copper strip conductors on flexible polymeric membranes. Each unit cell of a prototype antenna (see Figure 1) contains a patch antenna element and a compact T/R module that is compatible with flexible membrane circuitry. There are two membrane layers separated by a 12.7-mm air gap. Each membrane layer is made from a commercially available flexible circuit material that, as supplied, comprises a 127-micron-thick polyimide dielectric layer clad on both sides with 17.5-micron-thick copper layers. The copper layers are patterned into RF, bias, and control conductors. The T/R module is located on the back side of the ground plane and is RF-coupled to the patch element via a slot. The T/R module is a hybrid multilayer module assembled and packaged independently and attached to the membrane array. At the time of reporting the information for

  5. An experimental system for determining the influence of microgravity on B lymphocyte activation and cell fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sammons, D. W.; Zimmermann, U.; Klinman, N. R.; Gessner, P.; Humphreys, R. C.; Emmons, S. P.; Neil, G. A.

    The influence of microgravity on lymphocyte activation is central to the understanding of immunological function in space. Moreover, the adaptation of groundbased technologies to microgravity conditions presents opportunities for biotechnological applications including high efficiency production of antibody forming hybridomas. Because the emerging technology of microgravity hybridoma generation is dependent upon activation and cultivation of B lymphocytes during flight, we have adapted mitogen-driven B lymphocyte stimulation and culture that allows for the in vitro generation of large numbers of antibody forming cells suitable for cell fusion over a period of 1-2 weeks. We believe that this activation and cultivation system can be flown on near-term space flights to test fundamental hypotheses about mammalian cell activation, cell fusion, metabolism, secretion, growth, and bio-separation.

  6. Report of the Integrated Program Planning Activity for the DOE Fusion Energy Sciences Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    2000-12-01

    This report of the Integrated Program Planning Activity (IPPA) has been prepared in response to a recommendation by the Secretary of Energy Advisory Board that, ''Given the complex nature of the fusion effort, an integrated program planning process is an absolute necessity.'' We, therefore, undertook this activity in order to integrate the various elements of the program, to improve communication and performance accountability across the program, and to show the inter-connectedness and inter-dependency of the diverse parts of the national fusion energy sciences program. This report is based on the September 1999 Fusion Energy Sciences Advisory Committee's (FESAC) report ''Priorities and Balance within the Fusion Energy Sciences Program''. In its December 5,2000, letter to the Director of the Office of Science, the FESAC has reaffirmed the validity of the September 1999 report and stated that the IPPA presents a framework and process to guide the achievement of the 5-year goals listed in the 1999 report. The National Research Council's (NRC) Fusion Assessment Committee draft final report ''An Assessment of the Department of Energy's Office of Fusion Energy Sciences Program'', reviewing the quality of the science in the program, was made available after the IPPA report had been completed. The IPPA report is, nevertheless, consistent with the recommendations in the NRC report. In addition to program goals and the related 5-year, 10-year, and 15-year objectives, this report elaborates on the scientific issues associated with each of these objectives. The report also makes clear the relationships among the various program elements, and cites these relationships as the reason why integrated program planning is essential. In particular, while focusing on the science conducted by the program, the report addresses the important balances between the science and energy goals of the program, between the

  7. Global epigenomic analysis indicates protocadherin-7 activates osteoclastogenesis by promoting cell–cell fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nakamura, Haruhiko [Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, Hongo 7-3-1, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033 (Japan); Department of Cell Signaling, Graduate School of Medical and Dental Science, Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Yushima 1-5-45, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8549 (Japan); Nakashima, Tomoki [Department of Cell Signaling, Graduate School of Medical and Dental Science, Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Yushima 1-5-45, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8549 (Japan); Japan Science and Technology Agency, PRESTO, Yushima 1-5-45, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8549 (Japan); Hayashi, Mikihito [Department of Cell Signaling, Graduate School of Medical and Dental Science, Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Yushima 1-5-45, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8549 (Japan); Japan Science and Technology Agency, ERATO, Takayanagi Osteonetwork Project, 7-3-1, Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033 (Japan); Izawa, Naohiro; Yasui, Tetsuro [Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, Hongo 7-3-1, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033 (Japan); Aburatani, Hiroyuki [Genome Science Division, Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology, The University of Tokyo, 4-6-1, Komaba, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 153-8904 (Japan); Tanaka, Sakae [Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, Hongo 7-3-1, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033 (Japan); Takayanagi, Hiroshi, E-mail: takayana@m.u-tokyo.ac.jp [Japan Science and Technology Agency, ERATO, Takayanagi Osteonetwork Project, 7-3-1, Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033 (Japan); Department of Immunology, Graduate School of Medicine and Faculty of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1, Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033 (Japan)

    2014-12-12

    Highlights: • Identification of epigenetically regulated genes during osteoclastogenesis. • Pcdh7 is regulated by H3K4me3 and H3K27me3 during osteoclastogenesis. • Pcdh7 expression is increased by RANKL during osteoclastogenesis. • Establishment of novel cell fusion analysis for osteoclasts by imaging cytometer. • Pcdh7 regulates osteoclastogenesis by promoting cell fusion related gene expressions. - Abstract: Gene expression is dependent not only on genomic sequences, but also epigenetic control, in which the regulation of chromatin by histone modification plays a crucial role. Histone H3 lysine 4 trimethylation (H3K4me3) and histone H3 lysine 27 trimethylation (H3K27me3) are related to transcriptionally activated and silenced sequences, respectively. Osteoclasts, the multinucleated cells that resorb bone, are generated by the fusion of precursor cells of monocyte/macrophage lineage. To elucidate the molecular and epigenetic regulation of osteoclast differentiation, we performed a chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq) analysis for H3K4me3 and H3K27me3 in combination with RNA sequencing. We focused on the histone modification change from H3K4me3(+)H3K27me3(+) to H3K4me3(+)H3K27me3(–) and identified the protocadherin-7 gene (Pcdh7) to be among the genes epigenetically regulated during osteoclastogenesis. Pcdh7 was induced by RANKL stimulation in an NFAT-dependent manner. The knockdown of Pcdh7 inhibited RANKL-induced osteoclast differentiation due to the impairment of cell–cell fusion, accompanied by a decreased expression of the fusion-related genes Dcstamp, Ocstamp and Atp6v0d2. This study demonstrates that Pcdh7 plays a key role in osteoclastogenesis by promoting cell–cell fusion.

  8. TFEB activation promotes the recruitment of lysosomal glycohydrolases β-hexosaminidase and β-galactosidase to the plasma membrane

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Magini, Alessandro [Department of Experimental Medicine and Biochemical Sciences, University of Perugia, Perugia (Italy); Department of Medical and Biological Sciences (DSMB), University of Udine, Udine (Italy); Polchi, Alice; Urbanelli, Lorena [Department of Experimental Medicine and Biochemical Sciences, University of Perugia, Perugia (Italy); Cesselli, Daniela; Beltrami, Antonio [Department of Medical and Biological Sciences (DSMB), University of Udine, Udine (Italy); Tancini, Brunella [Department of Experimental Medicine and Biochemical Sciences, University of Perugia, Perugia (Italy); Emiliani, Carla, E-mail: carla.emiliani@unipg.it [Department of Experimental Medicine and Biochemical Sciences, University of Perugia, Perugia (Italy)

    2013-10-18

    Highlights: •TFEB activation promotes the increase of Hex and Gal activities. •The increase of Hex and Gal activities is related to transcriptional regulation. •TFEB promotes the recruitment of mature Hex and Gal on cell surface. -- Abstract: Lysosomes are membrane-enclosed organelles containing acid hydrolases. They mediate a variety of physiological processes, such as cellular clearance, lipid homeostasis, energy metabolism and pathogen defence. Lysosomes can secrete their content through a process called lysosome exocytosis in which lysosomes fuse with the plasma membrane realising their content into the extracellular milieu. Lysosomal exocytosis is not only responsible for the secretion of lysosomal enzymes, but it also has a crucial role in the plasma membrane repair. Recently, it has been demonstrated that lysosome response to the physiologic signals is regulated by the transcription factor EB (TFEB). In particular, lysosomal secretion is transcriptionally regulated by TFEB which induces both the docking and fusion of lysosomes with the plasma membrane. In this work we demonstrated that TFEB nuclear translocation is accompanied by an increase of mature glycohydrolases β-hexosaminidase and β-galactosidase on cell surface. This evidence contributes to elucidate an unknown TFEB biological function leading the lysosomal glycohydrolases on plasma membrane.

  9. Rab3A is a new interacting partner of synaptotagmin I and may modulate synaptic membrane fusion through a competitive mechanism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xie, Chunliang [Key Laboratory of Protein Chemistry and Developmental Biology of Ministry of Education, College of Life Sciences, Hunan Normal University, Changsha 410081 (China); Institute of Bast Fiber Crops, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Changsha 410205 (China); Li, Jianglin; Guo, Tianyao; Yan, Yizhong; Tang, Cheng; Wang, Ying; Chen, Ping [Key Laboratory of Protein Chemistry and Developmental Biology of Ministry of Education, College of Life Sciences, Hunan Normal University, Changsha 410081 (China); Wang, Xianchun, E-mail: wang_xianchun@263.net [Key Laboratory of Protein Chemistry and Developmental Biology of Ministry of Education, College of Life Sciences, Hunan Normal University, Changsha 410081 (China); Liang, Songping, E-mail: liangsp@hunnu.edu.cn [Key Laboratory of Protein Chemistry and Developmental Biology of Ministry of Education, College of Life Sciences, Hunan Normal University, Changsha 410081 (China)

    2014-02-21

    Highlights: • Rab3A has been found to be a novel interacting protein of synaptotagmin I. • Rab3A binds to synaptotagmin I in a Ca{sup 2+}-independent manner. • KKKK motif in C2B domain of synaptotagmin I is a key site for Rab3A binding. • Rab3A competitively inhibits the binding of C2B in synaptotagmin I to syntaxin 1B. • Rab3A may regulate synaptic membrane fusion and exocytosis in a competitive manner. - Abstract: Rab3 and synaptotagmin have been reported to be the key proteins that have opposite actions but cooperatively play critical regulatory roles in selecting and limiting the number of vesicles released at central synapses. However, the exact mechanism has not been fully understood. In this study, Rab3A and synaptotagmin I, the most abundant isoforms of Rab3 and synaptotagmin, respectively, in brain were for the first time demonstrated to directly interact with each other in a Ca{sup 2+}-independent manner, and the KKKK motif in the C2B domain of synaptotagmin I was a key site for the Rab3A binding, which was further confirmed by the competitive inhibition of inositol hexakisphosphate. Further studies demonstrated that Rab3A competitively affected the synaptotagmin I interaction with syntaxin 1B that was involved in membrane fusion during the synaptic vesicle exocytosis. These data indicate that Rab3A is a new synaptotagmin I interacting partner and may participate in the regulation of synaptic membrane fusion and thus the vesicle exocytosis by competitively modulating the interaction of synaptotagmin with syntaxin of the t-SNARE complex in presynaptic membranes.

  10. Simulation of P systems with active membranes on CUDA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cecilia, José M; García, José M; Guerrero, Ginés D; Martínez-del-Amor, Miguel A; Pérez-Hurtado, Ignacio; Pérez-Jiménez, Mario J

    2010-05-01

    P systems or Membrane Systems provide a high-level computational modelling framework that combines the structure and dynamic aspects of biological systems in a relevant and understandable way. They are inherently parallel and non-deterministic computing devices. In this article, we discuss the motivation, design principles and key of the implementation of a simulator for the class of recognizer P systems with active membranes running on a (GPU). We compare our parallel simulator for GPUs to the simulator developed for a single central processing unit (CPU), showing that GPUs are better suited than CPUs to simulate P systems due to their highly parallel nature.

  11. Membrane fusion induced by a short fusogenic peptide is assessed by its insertion and orientation into target bilayers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martin, [No Value; Pecheur, EI; Ruysschaert, JM; Hoekstra, D

    1999-01-01

    To clarify the molecular mechanism by which an amphipathic negatively charged peptide consisting of 11 residues (WAE) induces fusion, and the relevance of these features for fusion, its mode of insertion and orientation into target bilayers were investigated. Using attenuated total reflection

  12. Inner-membrane proteins PMI/TMEM11 regulate mitochondrial morphogenesis independently of the DRP1/MFN fission/fusion pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rival, Thomas; Macchi, Marc; Arnauné-Pelloquin, Laetitia; Poidevin, Mickael; Maillet, Frédéric; Richard, Fabrice; Fatmi, Ahmed; Belenguer, Pascale; Royet, Julien

    2011-03-01

    Mitochondria are highly dynamic organelles that can change in number and morphology during cell cycle, development or in response to extracellular stimuli. These morphological dynamics are controlled by a tight balance between two antagonistic pathways that promote fusion and fission. Genetic approaches have identified a cohort of conserved proteins that form the core of mitochondrial remodelling machineries. Mitofusins (MFNs) and OPA1 proteins are dynamin-related GTPases that are required for outer- and inner-mitochondrial membrane fusion respectively whereas dynamin-related protein 1 (DRP1) is the master regulator of mitochondrial fission. We demonstrate here that the Drosophila PMI gene and its human orthologue TMEM11 encode mitochondrial inner-membrane proteins that regulate mitochondrial morphogenesis. PMI-mutant cells contain a highly condensed mitochondrial network, suggesting that PMI has either a pro-fission or an anti-fusion function. Surprisingly, however, epistatic experiments indicate that PMI shapes the mitochondria through a mechanism that is independent of drp1 and mfn. This shows that mitochondrial networks can be shaped in higher eukaryotes by at least two separate pathways: one PMI-dependent and one DRP1/MFN-dependent.

  13. Fusion of Smartphone Motion Sensors for Physical Activity Recognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shoaib, Muhammad; Bosch, Stephan; Durmaz Incel, Ozlem; Scholten, Hans; Havinga, Paul J.M.

    2014-01-01

    For physical activity recognition, smartphone sensors, such as an accelerometer and a gyroscope, are being utilized in many research studies. So far, particularly, the accelerometer has been extensively studied. In a few recent studies, a combination of a gyroscope, a magnetometer (in a supporting r

  14. Fusion of smartphone motion sensors for physical activity recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoaib, Muhammad; Bosch, Stephan; Incel, Ozlem Durmaz; Scholten, Hans; Havinga, Paul J M

    2014-06-10

    For physical activity recognition, smartphone sensors, such as an accelerometer and a gyroscope, are being utilized in many research studies. So far, particularly, the accelerometer has been extensively studied. In a few recent studies, a combination of a gyroscope, a magnetometer (in a supporting role) and an accelerometer (in a lead role) has been used with the aim to improve the recognition performance. How and when are various motion sensors, which are available on a smartphone, best used for better recognition performance, either individually or in combination? This is yet to be explored. In order to investigate this question, in this paper, we explore how these various motion sensors behave in different situations in the activity recognition process. For this purpose, we designed a data collection experiment where ten participants performed seven different activities carrying smart phones at different positions. Based on the analysis of this data set, we show that these sensors, except the magnetometer, are each capable of taking the lead roles individually, depending on the type of activity being recognized, the body position, the used data features and the classification method employed (personalized or generalized). We also show that their combination only improves the overall recognition performance when their individual performances are not very high, so that there is room for performance improvement. We have made our data set and our data collection application publicly available, thereby making our experiments reproducible.

  15. Fusion of Smartphone Motion Sensors for Physical Activity Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Shoaib

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available For physical activity recognition, smartphone sensors, such as an accelerometer and a gyroscope, are being utilized in many research studies. So far, particularly, the accelerometer has been extensively studied. In a few recent studies, a combination of a gyroscope, a magnetometer (in a supporting role and an accelerometer (in a lead role has been used with the aim to improve the recognition performance. How and when are various motion sensors, which are available on a smartphone, best used for better recognition performance, either individually or in combination? This is yet to be explored. In order to investigate this question, in this paper, we explore how these various motion sensors behave in different situations in the activity recognition process. For this purpose, we designed a data collection experiment where ten participants performed seven different activities carrying smart phones at different positions. Based on the analysis of this data set, we show that these sensors, except the magnetometer, are each capable of taking the lead roles individually, depending on the type of activity being recognized, the body position, the used data features and the classification method employed (personalized or generalized. We also show that their combination only improves the overall recognition performance when their individual performances are not very high, so that there is room for performance improvement. We have made our data set and our data collection application publicly available, thereby making our experiments reproducible.

  16. Cell fusion and nuclear fusion in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maruyama, Daisuke; Ohtsu, Mina; Higashiyama, Tetsuya

    2016-12-01

    Eukaryotic cells are surrounded by a plasma membrane and have a large nucleus containing the genomic DNA, which is enclosed by a nuclear envelope consisting of the outer and inner nuclear membranes. Although these membranes maintain the identity of cells, they sometimes fuse to each other, such as to produce a zygote during sexual reproduction or to give rise to other characteristically polyploid tissues. Recent studies have demonstrated that the mechanisms of plasma membrane or nuclear membrane fusion in plants are shared to some extent with those of yeasts and animals, despite the unique features of plant cells including thick cell walls and intercellular connections. Here, we summarize the key factors in the fusion of these membranes during plant reproduction, and also focus on "non-gametic cell fusion," which was thought to be rare in plant tissue, in which each cell is separated by a cell wall.

  17. Low-chromium reduced-activation ferritic steels for fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Klueh, R.L.; Alexander, D.J.; Kenik, E.A. [Oak Ridge National Laboratory, TN (United States)

    1996-04-01

    Development of reduced-activation ferritic steels has concentrated on high-chromium (8-10 wt% Cr) steels. However, there are advantages for a low-chromium steel, and initial ORNL studies on reduced-activation steels were on compositions with 2.25 to 12% Cr. Those studies showed an Fe-2.25Cr-2W-0.25V-0.1C (2 1/4Cr-2WV) steel to have the highest strenglth of the steels studied. Although this steel had the best strength, Charpy impact properties were inferior to those of an Fe-9Cr-2W-0.25V-0.07Ta-0.1C (9Cr-2WVTa) and an Fe-2.25Cr-2W-0.1C (2 1/4Cr-2W) steel. Therefore, further development of the low-chromium Cr-W steels was required. These results indicate that it is possible to develop low-chromium reduced-activation ferritic steels that have tensile and impact properties as good or better than those of high-chromium (7-9% Cr) steels. Further improvement of properties should be possible by optimizing the composition.

  18. Development of benchmark reduced activation ferritic/martensitic steels for fusion energy applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanigawa, H.; Gaganidze, E.; Hirose, T.; Ando, M.; Zinkle, S. J.; Lindau, R.; Diegele, E.

    2017-09-01

    Reduced-activation ferritic/martensitic (RAFM) steel is the benchmark structural material for in-vessel components of fusion reactor. The current status of RAFM developments and evaluations is reviewed based on two leading RAFM steels, F82H and EUROFER-97. The applicability of various joining technologies for fabrication of fusion first wall and blanket structures, such as weld or diffusion bonding, is overviewed as well. The technical challenges and potential risks of utilizing RAFM steels as the structural material of in-vessel components are discussed, and possible mitigation methodology is introduced. The discussion suggests that deuterium-tritium fusion neutron irradiation effects currently need to be treated as an ambiguity factor which could be incorporated within the safety factor. The safety factor will be defined by the engineering design criteria which are not yet developed with regard to irradiation effects and some high temperature process, and the operating time condition of the in-vessel component will be defined by the condition at which those ambiguities due to neutron irradiation become too large to be acceptable, or by the critical condition at which 14 MeV fusion neutron irradiation effects is expected to become different from fission neutron irradiation effects.

  19. Plasma membrane mechanical stress activates TRPC5 channels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bing Shen

    Full Text Available Mechanical forces exerted on cells impose stress on the plasma membrane. Cells sense this stress and elicit a mechanoelectric transduction cascade that initiates compensatory mechanisms. Mechanosensitive ion channels in the plasma membrane are responsible for transducing the mechanical signals to electrical signals. However, the mechanisms underlying channel activation in response to mechanical stress remain incompletely understood. Transient Receptor Potential (TRP channels serve essential functions in several sensory modalities. These channels can also participate in mechanotransduction by either being autonomously sensitive to mechanical perturbation or by coupling to other mechanosensory components of the cell. Here, we investigated the response of a TRP family member, TRPC5, to mechanical stress. Hypoosmolarity triggers Ca2+ influx and cationic conductance through TRPC5. Importantly, for the first time we were able to record the stretch-activated TRPC5 current at single-channel level. The activation threshold for TRPC5 was found to be 240 mOsm for hypoosmotic stress and between -20 and -40 mmHg for pressure applied to membrane patch. In addition, we found that disruption of actin filaments suppresses TRPC5 response to hypoosmotic stress and patch pipette pressure, but does not prevent the activation of TRPC5 by stretch-independent mechanisms, indicating that actin cytoskeleton is an essential transduction component that confers mechanosensitivity to TRPC5. In summary, our findings establish that TRPC5 can be activated at the single-channel level when mechanical stress on the cell reaches a certain threshold.

  20. LegC3, an effector protein from Legionella pneumophila, inhibits homotypic yeast vacuole fusion in vivo and in vitro.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terry L Bennett

    Full Text Available During infection, the intracellular pathogenic bacterium Legionella pneumophila causes an extensive remodeling of host membrane trafficking pathways, both in the construction of a replication-competent vacuole comprised of ER-derived vesicles and plasma membrane components, and in the inhibition of normal phagosome:endosome/lysosome fusion pathways. Here, we identify the LegC3 secreted effector protein from L. pneumophila as able to inhibit a SNARE- and Rab GTPase-dependent membrane fusion pathway in vitro, the homotypic fusion of yeast vacuoles (lysosomes. This vacuole fusion inhibition appeared to be specific, as similar secreted coiled-coiled domain containing proteins from L. pneumophila, LegC7/YlfA and LegC2/YlfB, did not inhibit vacuole fusion. The LegC3-mediated fusion inhibition was reversible by a yeast cytosolic extract, as well as by a purified soluble SNARE, Vam7p. LegC3 blocked the formation of trans-SNARE complexes during vacuole fusion, although we did not detect a direct interaction of LegC3 with the vacuolar SNARE protein complexes required for fusion. Additionally, LegC3 was incapable of inhibiting a defined synthetic model of vacuolar SNARE-driven membrane fusion, further suggesting that LegC3 does not directly inhibit the activity of vacuolar SNAREs, HOPS complex, or Sec17p/18p during membrane fusion. LegC3 is likely utilized by Legionella to modulate eukaryotic membrane fusion events during pathogenesis.

  1. Status of R&D Activities on Materials for Fusion Power Reactors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baluc, N.; Abe, K.; Boutard, J. L.; Chernov, V. M.; Diegele, E.; Jitsukawa, S.; Kimura, Akihiko; Klueh, R. L.; Kohyama, Akira; Kurtz, Richard J.; Lasser, R.; Matsui, H.; Moslang, A.; Muroga, T.; Odette, George R.; Tran, M. Q.; van der Schaaf, B.; Wu, Y.; Yu, J.; Zinkle, Steven J.

    2007-09-19

    Current R&D activities on materials for fusion power reactors are mainly focused on plasma facing, structural and tritium breeding materials for plasma facing (first wall, divertor) and breeding blanket components. Most of these activities are being performed in Europe, Japan, P.R. China, Russia and the USA. They relate to development of new high temperature, radiation resistant materials, development of coatings that shall act as erosion, corrosion, permeation or electrical/MHD barriers, characterization of the whole candidate materials in terms of mechanical and physical properties, assessment of irradiation effects, compatibility experiments, development of reliable joints, and development and/or validation of design rules. Priorities defined worldwide in the field of materials for fusion power reactors are summarized, as well as the main achievements obtained during the last few years and the near-term perspectives in the different investigation areas.

  2. Endocrine activity of extraembryonic membranes extends beyond placental amniotes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lori C Albergotti

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: During development, all amniotes (mammals, reptiles, and birds form extraembryonic membranes, which regulate gas and water exchange, remove metabolic wastes, provide shock absorption, and transfer maternally derived nutrients. In viviparous (live-bearing amniotes, both extraembryonic membranes and maternal uterine tissues contribute to the placenta, an endocrine organ that synthesizes, transports, and metabolizes hormones essential for development. Historically, endocrine properties of the placenta have been viewed as an innovation of placental amniotes. However, an endocrine role of extraembryonic membranes has not been investigated in oviparous (egg-laying amniotes despite similarities in their basic structure, function, and shared evolutionary ancestry. In this study, we ask whether the oviparous chorioallantoic membrane (CAM of chicken (Gallus gallus has the capability to synthesize and receive signaling of progesterone, a major placental steroid hormone. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We quantified mRNA expression of key steroidogenic enzymes involved in progesterone synthesis and found that 3beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase, which converts pregnenolone to progesterone exhibited a 464 fold increase in the CAM from day 8 to day 18 of embryonic development (F(5, 68 = 89.282, p<0.0001. To further investigate progesterone synthesis, we performed explant culture and found that the CAM synthesizes progesterone in vitro in the presence of a steroid precursor. Finally, we quantified mRNA expression and performed protein immunolocalization of the progesterone receptor in the CAM. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Collectively, our data indicate that the chick CAM is steroidogenic and has the capability to both synthesize progesterone and receive progesterone signaling. These findings represent a paradigm shift in evolutionary reproductive biology by suggesting that endocrine activity of extraembryonic membranes is not a novel characteristic of

  3. IFMIF - International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility Conceptual Design Activity/Interim Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rennich, M.J.

    1995-12-01

    Environmental acceptability, safety, and economic viability win ultimately be the keys to the widespread introduction of fusion power. This will entail the development of radiation- resistant and low- activation materials. These low-activation materials must also survive exposure to damage from neutrons having an energy spectrum peaked near 14 MeV with annual radiation doses in the range of 20 displacements per atom (dpa). Testing of candidate materials, therefore, requires a high-flux source of high energy neutrons. The problem is that there is currently no high-flux source of neutrons in the energy range above a few MeV. The goal, is therefore, to provide an irradiation facility for use by fusion material scientists in the search for low-activation and damage-resistant materials. An accellerator-based neutron source has been established through a number of international studies and workshops` as an essential step for materials development and testing. The mission of the International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility (IFMIF) is to provide an accelerator-based, deuterium-lithium (D-Li) neutron source to produce high energy neutrons at sufficient intensity and irradiation volume to test samples of candidate materials up to about a full lifetime of anticipated use in fusion energy reactors. would also provide calibration and validation of data from fission reactor and other accelerator-based irradiation tests. It would generate material- specific activation and radiological properties data, and support the analysis of materials for use in safety, maintenance, recycling, decommissioning, and waste disposal systems.

  4. Membraner

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bach, Finn

    2009-01-01

    Notatet giver en kort introduktion til den statiske virkemåde af membraner og membrankonstruktioner......Notatet giver en kort introduktion til den statiske virkemåde af membraner og membrankonstruktioner...

  5. Biophysical Characterization of a Vaccine Candidate against HIV-1: The Transmembrane and Membrane Proximal Domains of HIV-1 gp41 as a Maltose Binding Protein Fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhen Gong

    Full Text Available The membrane proximal region (MPR, residues 649-683 and transmembrane domain (TMD, residues 684-705 of the gp41 subunit of HIV-1's envelope protein are highly conserved and are important in viral mucosal transmission, virus attachment and membrane fusion with target cells. Several structures of the trimeric membrane proximal external region (residues 662-683 of MPR have been reported at the atomic level; however, the atomic structure of the TMD still remains unknown. To elucidate the structure of both MPR and TMD, we expressed the region spanning both domains, MPR-TM (residues 649-705, in Escherichia coli as a fusion protein with maltose binding protein (MBP. MPR-TM was initially fused to the C-terminus of MBP via a 42 aa-long linker containing a TEV protease recognition site (MBP-linker-MPR-TM. Biophysical characterization indicated that the purified MBP-linker-MPR-TM protein was a monodisperse and stable candidate for crystallization. However, crystals of the MBP-linker-MPR-TM protein could not be obtained in extensive crystallization screens. It is possible that the 42 residue-long linker between MBP and MPR-TM was interfering with crystal formation. To test this hypothesis, the 42 residue-long linker was replaced with three alanine residues. The fusion protein, MBP-AAA-MPR-TM, was similarly purified and characterized. Significantly, both the MBP-linker-MPR-TM and MBP-AAA-MPR-TM proteins strongly interacted with broadly neutralizing monoclonal antibodies 2F5 and 4E10. With epitopes accessible to the broadly neutralizing antibodies, these MBP/MPR-TM recombinant proteins may be in immunologically relevant conformations that mimic a pre-hairpin intermediate of gp41.

  6. Hydrodynamic collective effects of active proteins in biological membranes

    CERN Document Server

    Koyano, Yuki; Mikhailov, Alexander S

    2016-01-01

    Lipid bilayers forming biological membranes are known to behave as viscous 2D fluids on submicrometer scales; usually they contain a large number of active protein inclusions. Recently, it has been shown [Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. USA 112, E3639 (2015)] that such active proteins should in- duce non-thermal fluctuating lipid flows leading to diffusion enhancement and chemotaxis-like drift for passive inclusions in biomembranes. Here, a detailed analytical and numerical investigation of such effects is performed. The attention is focused on the situations when proteins are concentrated within lipid rafts. We demonstrate that passive particles tend to become attracted by active rafts and are accumulated inside them.

  7. Immunogens Modeling a Fusion-Intermediate Conformation of gp41 Elicit Antibodies to the Membrane Proximal External Region of the HIV Envelope Glycoprotein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russell Vassell

    Full Text Available The membrane proximal external region (MPER of the gp41 subunit of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env contains determinants for broadly neutralizing antibodies and has remained an important focus of vaccine design. However, creating an immunogen that elicits broadly neutralizing antibodies to this region has proven difficult in part due to the relative inaccessibility of the MPER in the native conformation of Env. Here, we describe the antigenicity and immunogenicity of a panel of oligomeric gp41 immunogens designed to model a fusion-intermediate conformation of Env in order to enhance MPER exposure in a relevant conformation. The immunogens contain segments of the gp41 N- and C-heptad repeats to mimic a trapped intermediate, followed by the MPER, with variations that include different N-heptad lengths, insertion of extra epitopes, and varying C-termini. These well-characterized immunogens were evaluated in two different immunization protocols involving gp41 and gp140 proteins, gp41 and gp160 DNA primes, and different immunization schedules and adjuvants. We found that the immunogens designed to reduce extension of helical structure into the MPER elicited the highest MPER antibody binding titers, but these antibodies lacked neutralizing activity. The gp41 protein immunogens also elicited higher MPER titers than the gp140 protein immunogen. In prime-boost studies, the best MPER responses were seen in the groups that received DNA priming with gp41 vectors followed by gp41 protein boosts. Finally, although titers to the entire protein immunogen were similar in the two immunization protocols, MPER-specific titers differed, suggesting that the immunization route, schedule, dose, or adjuvant may differentially influence MPER immunogenicity. These findings inform the design of future MPER immunogens and immunization protocols.

  8. Designing CNC Knit for Hybrid Membrane And Bending Active Structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tamke, Martin; Holden Deleuran, Anders; Gengnagel, Christoph

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in computation allow for the integration of design and simulation of highly interrelated systems, such as hybrids of structural membranes and bending active elements. The engaged complexities of forces and logistics can be mediated through the development of materials with project...... means to design, specify, make and test CNC knit as material for hybrid structures in architectural scale. This paper shares the developed process, identifies challenges, potentials and future work...

  9. Joining techniques for a reduced activation 12Cr steel for inertial fusion energy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hunt, R.M., E-mail: hunt52@llnl.gov; El-Dasher, B., E-mail: eldasher2@llnl.gov; Choi, B.W., E-mail: choi3@llnl.gov; Torres, S.G., E-mail: torres4@llnl.gov

    2014-10-15

    Highlights: • We characterized joining techniques for a candidate material for inertial confinement fusion: reduced activation ferritic martensitic 12% chromium steel. • E-beam, TIG, and laser welds were completed with good quality without significant cracking or porosity. • A heat treatment of 950 °C for 1 h normalized the weld fusion zone and heat-affected zone to the base metal microstructure. • Diffusion bonding at 950 °C or greater for 2 h produced an interface with over 600 MPa tensile strength. - Abstract: At Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, we are developing a reduced activation ferritic martensitic steel that is based on the ferritic martensitic steel HT-9. As a part of the development of this steel, we tested a series of welding processes for characterization, including conventional welds (electron beam, tungsten inert gas, and laser) as well as solid-state welds (hot isostatic pressing). We also heat treated the joints at various temperatures between 750 °C and 1050 °C to find a suitable normalization scheme. The modified HT-9 reduced activation ferritic martensitic steel appears highly suitable to welding and diffusion bonding. All welds showed good quality fusion zones with insignificant cracking or porosity. Additionally, a heat treatment schedule of 950 °C for one hour caused minimal grain growth while still converging the hardness of the base metal with that of the fusion and heat-affected zones. Also, modified HT-9 diffusion bonds that were created at temperatures of at least 950 °C for two hours at 103 MPa had interface tensile strengths of greater than 600 MPa. The diffusion bonds showed no evidence of increased hardness nor void formation at the diffusion bonded interface.

  10. Fusion of a Short HA2-Derived Peptide Sequence to Cell-Penetrating Peptides Improves Cytosolic Uptake, but Enhances Cytotoxic Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor Kitanovic

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Cell-penetrating peptides (CPP have become a widely used tool for efficient cargo delivery into cells. However, one limiting fact is their uptake by endocytosis causing the enclosure of the CPP-cargo construct within endosomes. One often used method to enhance the outflow into the cytosol is the fusion of endosome-disruptive peptide or protein sequences to CPP. But, until now, no studies exist investigating the effects of the fusion peptide to the cellular distribution, structural arrangements and cytotoxic behaviour of the CPP. In this study, we attached a short modified sequence of hemagglutinin subunit HA2 to different CPP and analysed the biologic activity of the new designed peptides. Interestingly, we observed an increased cytosolic distribution but also highly toxic activities in the micromolar range against several cell lines. Structural analysis revealed that attachment of the fusion peptide had profound implications on the whole conformation of the peptide, which might be responsible for membrane interaction and endosome disruption.

  11. Preparation of TiO2-activated carbon complex membranes and their photoelectrocatalytic activity

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    尤宏; 姚杰; 孙丽欣; 王强

    2003-01-01

    The experimental process of preparing TiO2-activated carbon complex membranes with activated carbon powder as main carrier, PTFE as binder and wire netting as matrix is described in detail, and both photo-catalysis and photo-electro-catalysis are measured to study the properties of complex membranes. Experimental results show that the photo-catalytic activity of the membranes is high and stable in the process of treating Rhodamine-B; the application of an electric field accelerates the speed of photo-catalysis, and the efficiency of photo-catalysis is increased 2.5 times when the applied voltage is 0.8 V; and the degradation of Rhodamine-B follows the dynamics of first order reaction. It is concluded from the discussion of experimental results that the preparation process of TiO2-activated carbon complex membranes is a simple low-cost process suitable for large scale application.

  12. Biological effects of activation products and other chemicals released from fusion power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Strand, J.A.; Poston, T.M.

    1976-09-01

    Literature reviews indicate that existing information is incomplete, often contradictory, and of questionable value for the prediction and assessment of ultimate impact from fusion-associated activation products and other chemical releases. It is still uncertain which structural materials will be used in the blanket and first wall of fusion power plants. However, niobium, vanadium, vanadium-chromium alloy, vanadium-titanium alloy, sintered aluminum product, and stainless steel have been suggested. The activation products of principal concern will be the longer-lived isotopes of /sup 26/Al, /sup 49/V, /sup 51/Cr, /sup 54/Mn, /sup 55/Fe, /sup 58/Co, /sup 60/Co, /sup 93/Nb, and /sup 94/Nb. Lithium released to the environment either during the mining cycle, from power plant operation or accident, may be in the form of a number of compound types varying in solubility and affinity for biological organisms. The effects of a severe liquid metal fire or explosion involving Na or K will vary according to inherent abiotic and biotic features of the affected site. Saline, saline-alkaline, and sodic soils of arid lands would be particularly susceptible to alkaline stress. Beryllium released to the environment during the mining cycle or reactor accident situation could be in the form of a number of compound types. Adverse effects to aquatic species from routine chemical releases (biocides, corrosion inhibitors, dissolution products) may occur in the discharge of both fission and fusion power plant designs.

  13. Adjoint Monte Carlo Simulation of Fusion Product Activation Probe Experiment in ASDEX Upgrade tokamak

    CERN Document Server

    Äkäslompolo, Simppa; Tardini, Giovanni; Kurki-Suonio, Taina

    2015-01-01

    The activation probe is a robust tool to measure flux of fusion products from a magnetically confined plasma. A carefully chosen solid sample is exposed to the flux, and the impinging ions transmute the material makig it radioactive. Ultra-low level gamma-ray spectroscopy is used post mortem to measure the activity and, thus, the number of fusion products. This contribution presents the numerical analysis of the first measurement in the ASDEX Upgrade tokamak, which was also the first experiment to measure a single discharge. The ASCOT suite of codes was used to perform adjoint/reverse Monte-Carlo calculations of the fusion products. The analysis facilitated, for the first time, a comparison of numerical and experimental values for absolutely calibrated flux. The results agree to within 40%, which can be considered remarkable considering the fact that all features of the plasma cannot be accounted in the simulations. Also an alternative probe orientation was studied. The results suggest that a better optimized...

  14. Adjoint Monte Carlo simulation of fusion product activation probe experiment in ASDEX Upgrade tokamak

    Science.gov (United States)

    Äkäslompolo, S.; Bonheure, G.; Tardini, G.; Kurki-Suonio, T.; The ASDEX Upgrade Team

    2015-10-01

    The activation probe is a robust tool to measure flux of fusion products from a magnetically confined plasma. A carefully chosen solid sample is exposed to the flux, and the impinging ions transmute the material making it radioactive. Ultra-low level gamma-ray spectroscopy is used post mortem to measure the activity and, thus, the number of fusion products. This contribution presents the numerical analysis of the first measurement in the ASDEX Upgrade tokamak, which was also the first experiment to measure a single discharge. The ASCOT suite of codes was used to perform adjoint/reverse Monte Carlo calculations of the fusion products. The analysis facilitates, for the first time, a comparison of numerical and experimental values for absolutely calibrated flux. The results agree to within a factor of about two, which can be considered a quite good result considering the fact that all features of the plasma cannot be accounted in the simulations.Also an alternative to the present probe orientation was studied. The results suggest that a better optimized orientation could measure the flux from a significantly larger part of the plasma. A shorter version of this contribution is due to be published in PoS at: 1st EPS conference on Plasma Diagnostics

  15. High yield expression of catalytically active USP18 (UBP43 using a Trigger Factor fusion system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Basters Anja

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Covalent linkage of the ubiquitin-like protein ISG15 interferes with viral infection and USP18 is the major protease which specifically removes ISG15 from target proteins. Thus, boosting ISG15 modification by protease inhibition of USP18 might represent a new strategy to interfere with viral replication. However, so far no heterologous expression system was available to yield sufficient amounts of catalytically active protein for high-throughput based inhibitor screens. Results High-level heterologous expression of USP18 was achieved by applying a chaperone-based fusion system in E. coli. Pure protein was obtained in a single-step on IMAC via a His6-tag. The USP18 fusion protein exhibited enzymatic activity towards cell derived ISG15 conjugated substrates and efficiently hydrolyzed ISG15-AMC. Specificity towards ISG15 was shown by covalent adduct formation with ISG15 vinyl sulfone but not with ubiquitin vinyl sulfone. Conclusion The results presented here show that a chaperone fusion system can provide high yields of proteins that are difficult to express. The USP18 protein obtained here is suited to setup high-throughput small molecule inhibitor screens and forms the basis for detailed biochemical and structural characterization.

  16. Targeted DNA demethylation and activation of endogenous genes using programmable TALE-TET1 fusion proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeder, Morgan L; Angstman, James F; Richardson, Marcy E; Linder, Samantha J; Cascio, Vincent M; Tsai, Shengdar Q; Ho, Quan H; Sander, Jeffry D; Reyon, Deepak; Bernstein, Bradley E; Costello, Joseph F; Wilkinson, Miles F; Joung, J Keith

    2013-12-01

    Genome-wide studies have defined cell type-specific patterns of DNA methylation that are important for regulating gene expression in both normal development and disease. However, determining the functional significance of specific methylation events remains challenging, owing to the lack of methods for removing such modifications in a targeted manner. Here we describe an approach for efficient targeted demethylation of specific CpGs in human cells using fusions of engineered transcription activator-like effector (TALE) repeat arrays and the TET1 hydroxylase catalytic domain. Using these TALE-TET1 fusions, we demonstrate that modification of critical methylated promoter CpG positions can lead to substantial increases in the expression of endogenous human genes. Our results delineate a strategy for understanding the functional significance of specific CpG methylation marks in the context of endogenous gene loci and validate programmable DNA demethylation reagents with potential utility for research and therapeutic applications.

  17. PI(4,5)P2 regulates myoblast fusion through Arp2/3 regulator localization at the fusion site.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bothe, Ingo; Deng, Su; Baylies, Mary

    2014-06-01

    Cell-cell fusion is a regulated process that requires merging of the opposing membranes and underlying cytoskeletons. However, the integration between membrane and cytoskeleton signaling during fusion is not known. Using Drosophila, we demonstrate that the membrane phosphoinositide PI(4,5)P2 is a crucial regulator of F-actin dynamics during myoblast fusion. PI(4,5)P2 is locally enriched and colocalizes spatially and temporally with the F-actin focus that defines the fusion site. PI(4,5)P2 enrichment depends on receptor engagement but is upstream or parallel to actin remodeling. Regulators of actin branching via Arp2/3 colocalize with PI(4,5)P2 in vivo and bind PI(4,5)P2 in vitro. Manipulation of PI(4,5)P2 availability leads to impaired fusion, with a reduction in the F-actin focus size and altered focus morphology. Mechanistically, the changes in the actin focus are due to a failure in the enrichment of actin regulators at the fusion site. Moreover, improper localization of these regulators hinders expansion of the fusion interface. Thus, PI(4,5)P2 enrichment at the fusion site encodes spatial and temporal information that regulates fusion progression through the localization of activators of actin polymerization.

  18. Analysis of Induced Gamma Activation by D-T Neutrons in Selected Fusion Reactor Relevant Materials with EAF-2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klix, Axel; Fischer, Ulrich; Gehre, Daniel

    2016-02-01

    Samples of lanthanum, erbium and titanium which are constituents of structural materials, insulating coatings and tritium breeder for blankets of fusion reactor designs have been irradiated in a fusion peak neutron field. The induced gamma activities were measured and the results were used to check calculations with the European activation system EASY-2010. Good agreement for the prediction of major contributors to the contact dose rate of the materials was found, but for minor contributors the calculation deviated up to 50%.

  19. Are active elements necessary in the basilar membrane impedance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diependaal, R J; Viergever, M A; de Boer, E

    1986-07-01

    This article is motivated by the current hypothesis [Kim et al., Psychological, Physiological and Behavioural Studies in Hearing (Delft U. P., The Netherlands, 1980); Neely, Doctoral dissertation, Washington University, St. Louis, MO (1981); de Boer, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 73, 567-573 (1983a) and 73, 574-576 (1983b)] that it is necessary to include active elements in the basilar membrane (BM) impedance in order to explain recent data on the vibration of the BM [Khanna and Leonard, Science 215, 305-306 (1982); Sellick et al., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 72, 131-141 (1982); Robles et al., Peripheral Auditory Mechanisms (Springer, New York, 1986)]. In order to test this hypothesis, first, a method which is an inversion of the customary description of cochlear mechanics is described. Instead of computing the BM velocity for a given point impedance of the membrane, we show how to compute the impedance function from a given BM velocity pattern in response to a sinusoidal input at the stapes. This method is then used to study the sensitivity of the recovered impedance to perturbations in the velocity pattern. The simulations used show that the real part of the impedance is extremely sensitive to such perturbations. Therefore, measured velocity patterns are unlikely to resolve the issue of whether active elements should be included. Frequency responses measured at a few points on the membrane are even less likely to do so.

  20. Thin Film Polyamide Membranes with Photoresponsive Antibacterial Activity

    KAUST Repository

    Duong, Phuoc H. H.

    2017-08-09

    Membranes containing a photosensitizer molecule as part of the selective layer are proposed with demonstrated anti-biofouling activity. For the membrane preparation, mixtures of an amine-functionalized photosensitizer molecule, (5,10,15,20-(tetra-4-aminophenyl)porphyrin) and m-phenylene diamine (MPD) reacted with trimesoyl chloride (TMC) by interfacial polymerization to form thin polyamide films on top of an asymmetric porous support. A highly permeable membrane (35.4 Lm−2h−1bar−1) with 99 % rejection of Brilliant Blue R (826 g/mol) was obtained using 0.25 wt% porphyrin and 0.75 wt% MPD as amine monomers. Under visible light exposure, singlet oxygen (1O2) is generated in the porphyrin containing-polyamide film, reaching the bacteria in the feed by diffusion and enhancing the biofouling resistance and anti-microbial activity. Anti-biofouling and anti-microbial photoactivity in solution are demonstrated on Staphylococcus aureus at different porphyrin concentrations and light exposure time.

  1. Activation calculation and radiation analysis for China Fusion Engineering Test Reactor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, Zhi, E-mail: zchen@ustc.edu.cn; Qiao, Shiji; Jiang, Shuai; Xu, X. George

    2016-11-01

    Highlights: • Activation calculation was performed using FLUKA for the main components of CFETR. • Radionuclides and radioactive wastes were assessed for CFETR. • The Waste Disposal Ratings (WDR) were assessed for CFETR. - Abstract: The activation calculation and analysis for the China Fusion Engineering Test Reactor (CFETR) will play an important role in its system design, maintenance, inspection and assessment of nuclear waste. Using the multi-particle transport code FLUKA and its associated data library, we calculated the radioactivity, specific activity, waste disposal rating from activation products, nuclides in the tritium breeding blanket, shielding layer, vacuum vessel and toroidal field coil (TFC) of CFETR. This paper presents the calculation results including neutron flux, activation products and waste disposal rating after one-year full operation of the CFETR. The findings show that, under the assumption of one-year operation at the 200 MW fusion power, the total radioactivity inventory will be 1.05 × 10{sup 19} Bq at shutdown and 1.03 × 10{sup 17} Bq after ten years. The primary residual nuclide is found to be {sup 55}Fe in ten years after the shutdown. The waste disposal rating (WDR) values are very low (<<1), according to Class C limits, CFETR materials are qualified for shallow land burial. It is shown that CFETR has no serious activation safety issue.

  2. Antiviral activity of squalamine: Role of electrostatic membrane binding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckerman, Bernard; Qu, Wei; Mishra, Abhijit; Zasloff, Michael; Wong, Gerard; Luijten, Erik

    2012-02-01

    Recent workootnotetextM. Zasloff et al., Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. (USA) 108, 15978 (2011). has demonstrated that squalamine, a molecule found in the liver of sharks, exhibits broad-spectrum antiviral properties. It has been proposed that this activity results from the charge-density matching of squalamine and phospholipid membranes, causing squalamine to bind to membranes and displace proteins such as Rac1 that are crucial for the viral replication cycle. Here we investigate this hypothesis by numerical simulation of a coarse-grained model for the competition between Rac1 and squalamine in binding affinity to a flat lipid bilayer. We perform free-energy calculations to test the ability of squalamine to condense stacked bilayer systems and thereby displace bulkier Rac1 molecules. We directly compare our findings to small-angle x-ray scattering results for the same setup.

  3. Expression and activity analysis of a new fusion protein targeting ovarian cancer cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Manman; Chang, Weiqin; Wang, Dingding; Cui, Manhua; Lin, Yang; Wu, Shuying; Xu, Tianmin

    2015-09-01

    The aim of the present study was to develop a new therapeutic drug to improve the prognosis of ovarian cancer patients. Human urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA)17-34-kunitz-type protease inhibitor (KPI) eukaryotic expression vector was constructed and recombinant human uPA17-34-KPI (rhuPA17-34-KPI) in P. pastoris was expressed. In the present study, the DNA sequences that encode uPA 17-34 amino acids were created according to the native amino acids sequence and inserted into the KPI-pPICZαC vector, which was constructed. Then, uPA17‑34-KPI-pPICZαC was transformed into P. pastoris X-33, and rhuPA17-34-KPI was expressed by induction of methanol. The bioactivities of a recombinant fusion protein were detected with trypsin inhibition analysis, and the inhibitory effects on the growth of ovarian cancer cells were identified using the TUNEL assay, in vitro wound‑healing assay and Matrigel model analysis. The results of the DNA sequence analysis of the recombinant vector uPA17-34-KPI‑pPICZα demonstrated that the DNA‑encoding human uPA 17-34 amino acids, 285-288 amino acids of amyloid precursor protein (APP) and 1-57 amino acids of KPI were correctly inserted into the pPICZαC vector. Following induction by methonal, the fusion protein with a molecular weight of 8.8 kDa was observed using SDS-PAGE and western blot analysis. RhuPA17-34-KPI was expressed in P. pastoris with a yield of 50 mg/l in a 50-ml tube. The recombinant fusion protein was able to inhibit the activity of trypsin, inhibit growth and induce apoptosis of SKOV3 cells, and inhibit the invasion and metastasis of ovarian cancer cells. By considering uPA17-34 amino acid specific binding uPAR as the targeted part of fusion protein and utilizing the serine protease inhibitor activity of KPI, it was found that the recombinant fusion protein uPA17-34-KPI inhibited the invasion and metastasis of ovarian tumors, and may therefore be regarded as effective in targeted treatment.

  4. Palmitoylation of SARS-CoV S protein is necessary for partitioning into detergent-resistant membranes and cell-cell fusion but not interaction with M protein

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBride, Corrin E.; Machamer, Carolyn E.

    2010-01-01

    Coronaviruses are enveloped RNA viruses that generally cause mild disease in humans. However, the recently emerged coronavirus that caused severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV) is the most pathogenic human coronavirus discovered to date. The SARS-CoV spike (S) protein mediates virus entry by binding cellular receptors and inducing fusion between the viral envelope and the host cell membrane. Coronavirus S proteins are palmitoylated, which may affect function. Here, we created a non-palmitoylated SARS-CoV S protein by mutating all nine cytoplasmic cysteine residues. Palmitoylation of SARS-CoV S was required for partitioning into detergent-resistant membranes and for cell-cell fusion. Surprisingly, however, palmitoylation of S was not required for interaction with SARS-CoV M protein. This contrasts with the requirement for palmitoylation of mouse hepatitis virus S protein for interaction with M protein, and may point to important differences in assembly and infectivity of these two coronaviruses. PMID:20580052

  5. Recognition of membrane-bound fusion-peptide/MPER complexes by the HIV-1 neutralizing 2F5 antibody: implications for anti-2F5 immunogenicity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nerea Huarte

    Full Text Available The membrane proximal external region (MPER of the fusogenic HIV-1 glycoprotein-41 harbors the epitope sequence recognized by 2F5, a broadly neutralizing antibody isolated from an infected individual. Structural mimicry of the conserved MPER 2F5 epitope constitutes a pursued goal in the field of anti-HIV vaccine development. It has been proposed that 2F5 epitope folding into its native state is attained in the vicinity of the membrane interface and might involve interactions with other viral structures. Here we present results indicating that oligomeric complexes established between MPER and the conserved amino-terminal fusion peptide (FP can partition into lipid vesicles and be specifically bound by the 2F5 antibody at their surfaces. Cryo-transmission electron microscopy of liposomes doped with MPER:FP peptide mixtures provided the structural grounds for complex recognition by antibody at lipid bilayer surfaces. Supporting the immunogenicity of the membrane-bound complex, these MPER:FP peptide-vesicle formulations could trigger cross-reactive anti-MPER antibodies in rabbits. Thus, our observations suggest that contacts with N-terminal regions of gp41 may stabilize the 2F5 epitope as a membrane-surface antigen.

  6. Position control of active magnetic levitation using sphere-shaped HTS bulk for inertial nuclear fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suga, K.; Riku, K.; Agatsuma, K.; Ueda, H.; Ishiyama, A.

    2008-02-01

    We have developed an active magnetic levitation system that comprises a field-cooled disk-shaped or sphere-shaped HTS bulk and multiple ring-shaped electromagnets. In this system, the levitation height of HTS bulk can be controlled by adjusting the operating current of each electromagnet individually. Further, the application of the vertical noncontact levitation system is expected due to its levitation stability without mechanical supports. We assume that this system is applied to inertial nuclear fusion. However, one of the important issues is to achieve position control with high accuracy of the fusion fuel in order to illuminate the target evenly over the entire surface. Therefore, this system is applied to the levitation and position control of a sphere-shaped superconducting capsule containing nuclear fusion fuel. In this study, we designed and constructed a position control system for the sphere-shaped HTS bulk with a diameter of 5 mm by using numerical simulation based on hybrid finite element and boundary element analysis. We then carried out the experiment of levitation height and position control characteristics of the HTS bulk in this system. With regard to position control, accuracies within 59 ?m are obtained.

  7. Genetically Encoded Spy Peptide Fusion System to Detect Plasma Membrane-Localized Proteins In Vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bedbrook, Claire N; Kato, Mihoko; Ravindra Kumar, Sripriya; Lakshmanan, Anupama; Nath, Ravi D; Sun, Fei; Sternberg, Paul W; Arnold, Frances H; Gradinaru, Viviana

    2015-08-20

    Membrane proteins are the main gatekeepers of cellular state, especially in neurons, serving either to maintain homeostasis or instruct response to synaptic input or other external signals. Visualization of membrane protein localization and trafficking in live cells facilitates understanding the molecular basis of cellular dynamics. We describe here a method for specifically labeling the plasma membrane-localized fraction of heterologous membrane protein expression using channelrhodopsins as a case study. We show that the genetically encoded, covalent binding SpyTag and SpyCatcher pair from the Streptococcus pyogenes fibronectin-binding protein FbaB can selectively label membrane-localized proteins in living cells in culture and in vivo in Caenorhabditis elegans. The SpyTag/SpyCatcher covalent labeling method is highly specific, modular, and stable in living cells. We have used the binding pair to develop a channelrhodopsin membrane localization assay that is amenable to high-throughput screening for opsin discovery and engineering.

  8. Modulation of Erythrocyte Plasma Membrane Redox System Activity by Curcumin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prabhakar Singh

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Plasma membrane redox system (PMRS is an electron transport chain system ubiquitously present throughout all cell types. It transfers electron from intracellular substrates to extracellular acceptors for regulation of redox status. Curcumin, isolated from Curcuma longa, has modulatory effects on cellular physiology due to its membrane interaction ability and antioxidant potential. The present study investigates the effect of curcumin on PMRS activity of erythrocytes isolated from Wistar rats in vitro and in vivo and validated through an in silico docking simulation study using Molegro Virtual Docker (MVD. Effects of curcumin were also evaluated on level of glutathione (GSH and the oxidant potential of plasma measured in terms of plasma ferric equivalent oxidative potentials (PFEOP. Results show that curcumin significantly (p<0.01 downregulated the PMRS activity in a dose-dependent manner. Molecular docking results suggest that curcumin interacts with amino acids at the active site cavity of cytochrome b5 reductase, a key constituent of PMRS. Curcumin also increased the GSH level in erythrocytes and plasma while simultaneously decreasing the oxidant potential (PFEOP of plasma. Altered PMRS activity and redox status are associated with the pathophysiology of several health complications including aging and diabetes; hence, the above finding may explain part of the role of curcumin in health beneficial effects.

  9. Membrane lipids regulate ganglioside GM2 catabolism and GM2 activator protein activity[S

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anheuser, Susi; Breiden, Bernadette; Schwarzmann, Günter; Sandhoff, Konrad

    2015-01-01

    Ganglioside GM2 is the major lysosomal storage compound of Tay-Sachs disease. It also accumulates in Niemann-Pick disease types A and B with primary storage of SM and with cholesterol in type C. Reconstitution of GM2 catabolism with β-hexosaminidase A and GM2 activator protein (GM2AP) at uncharged liposomal surfaces carrying GM2 as substrate generated only a physiologically irrelevant catabolic rate, even at pH 4.2. However, incorporation of anionic phospholipids into the GM2 carrying liposomes stimulated GM2 hydrolysis more than 10-fold, while the incorporation of plasma membrane stabilizing lipids (SM and cholesterol) generated a strong inhibition of GM2 hydrolysis, even in the presence of anionic phospholipids. Mobilization of membrane lipids by GM2AP was also inhibited in the presence of cholesterol or SM, as revealed by surface plasmon resonance studies. These lipids also reduced the interliposomal transfer rate of 2-NBD-GM1 by GM2AP, as observed in assays using Förster resonance energy transfer. Our data raise major concerns about the usage of recombinant His-tagged GM2AP compared with untagged protein. The former binds more strongly to anionic GM2-carrying liposomal surfaces, increases GM2 hydrolysis, and accelerates intermembrane transfer of 2-NBD-GM1, but does not mobilize membrane lipids. PMID:26175473

  10. Fusion splicing of double-clad specialty fiber using active alignment technology

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Shupeng Yin; Ping Yan; Mali Gong; Jianwei He; Chen Fu

    2011-01-01

    @@ The fusion splicing of double-clad (DC) specialty fibers based on active alignment is crucial to the investigation of high-power monolithic fiber lasers. Given the wave-guiding characteristic of DC fiber, a light stripper is introduced in an active alignment experiment. We propose a novel method for stripping light that is convenient, highly efficient, and low cost. This method is also effective for low-numerical-aperture beams that escape from the fiber core. A splice loss as low as 0.05 dB is achieved.%The fusion splicing of double-clad (DC) specialty fibers based on active alignment is crucial to the investigation of high-power monolithic fiber lasers. Given the wave-guiding characteristic of DC fiber, a light stripper is introduced in an active alignment experiment. We propose a novel method for stripping light that is convenient, highly efficient, and low cost. This method is also effective for low-numerical-aperture beams that escape from the fiber core. A splice loss as low as 0.05 dB is achieved.

  11. An activation-collision mechanism for cholesterol transfer between membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steck, T L; Kezdy, F J; Lange, Y

    1988-09-15

    We report the results of experiments which show that cholesterol transfer between membranes cannot proceed by aqueous diffusion, as widely held, but must involve a more complex mechanism. (a) The rate of transfer of [3H]cholesterol from red blood cells was found to vary inversely with the size of the acceptor particle (ghosts, vesicles of ghosts, liposomes, and plasma lipoproteins). (b) The transfer of [3H]cholesterol from red blood cells to ghosts was accelerated by the presence of plasma, even though the plasma competed with the ghosts as an acceptor. (c) The rate of transfer of [3H]cholesterol from red blood cells to ghosts decreased to zero with increasing dilution but was not simply second-order. (d) The cholesterol in retinal rod disc membranes is not at equilibrium with plasma lipoproteins in that disc cholesterol increased when the homogenates were incubated in vitro with plasma. (e) The kinetics of cholesterol transfer cannot be limited by unstirred layer effects since the transfer of lysolecithin in the same system was faster than that of cholesterol by 3 orders of magnitude. The simplest model compatible with all the data suggests a two-step pathway involving a first-order followed by a second-order process. The first step could be a unimolecular activation event, perhaps the movement of the sterol in the donor particle to a more exposed (hydrated) position. In the second step, the activated sterol would be transferred during transient collisions between donor and acceptor particles. When collision is not rate-limiting, the overall process would appear to be simply first-order, hence kinetically indistinguishable from the aqueous diffusion mechanism. The activation-collision model thus not only rationalizes our data but is also consistent with the simpler kinetics previously reported for the transfer of both membrane phospholipids and sterols.

  12. Palmitoylation of the feline immunodeficiency virus envelope glycoprotein and its effect on fusion activity and envelope incorporation into virions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gonzalez, Silvia A.; Paladino, Monica G. [Laboratorio de Virologia, CONICET-Universidad de Belgrano (UB), Villanueva 1324 (C1426BMJ), Buenos Aires (Argentina); Affranchino, Jose L., E-mail: jose.affranchino@comunidad.ub.edu.ar [Laboratorio de Virologia, CONICET-Universidad de Belgrano (UB), Villanueva 1324 (C1426BMJ), Buenos Aires (Argentina)

    2012-06-20

    The feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) envelope glycoprotein (Env) possesses a short cytoplasmic domain of 53 amino acids containing four highly conserved cysteines at Env positions 804, 811, 815 and 848. Since palmitoylation of transmembrane proteins occurs at or near the membrane anchor, we investigated whether cysteines 804, 811 and 815 are acylated and analyzed the relevance of these residues for Env functions. Replacement of cysteines 804, 811 and 815 individually or in combination by serine residues resulted in Env glycoproteins that were efficiently expressed and processed. However, mutations C804S and C811S reduced Env fusogenicity by 93% and 84%, respectively, compared with wild-type Env. By contrast, mutant C815S exhibited a fusogenic capacity representing 50% of the wild-type value. Remarkably, the double mutation C804S/C811S abrogated both Env fusion activity and Env incorporation into virions. Finally, by means of Click chemistry assays we demonstrated that the four FIV Env cytoplasmic cysteines are palmitoylated.

  13. Hydrodynamic collective effects of active proteins in biological membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koyano, Yuki; Kitahata, Hiroyuki; Mikhailov, Alexander S.

    2016-08-01

    Lipid bilayers forming biological membranes are known to behave as viscous two-dimensional fluids on submicrometer scales; usually they contain a large number of active protein inclusions. Recently, it was shown [A. S. Mikhailov and R. Kapral, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 112, E3639 (2015), 10.1073/pnas.1506825112] that such active proteins should induce nonthermal fluctuating lipid flows leading to diffusion enhancement and chemotaxislike drift for passive inclusions in biomembranes. Here, a detailed analytical and numerical investigation of such effects is performed. The attention is focused on the situations when proteins are concentrated within lipid rafts. We demonstrate that passive particles tend to become attracted by active rafts and are accumulated inside them.

  14. Lateralized Difference in Tympanic Membrane Temperature: Emotion and Hemispheric Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth E Propper

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available We review literature examining relationships between tympanic membrane temperature (TMT, affective/motivational orientation, and hemispheric activity. Lateralized differences in TMT might enable real-time monitoring of hemispheric activity in real-world conditions, and could serve as a corroborating marker of mental illnesses associated with specific affective dysregulation. We support the proposal that TMT holds potential for broadly indexing lateralized brain physiology during tasks demanding the processing and representation of emotional and/or motivational states, and for predicting trait-related affective/motivational orientations. The precise nature of the relationship between TMT and brain physiology, however, remains elusive. Indeed the limited extant research has sampled different participant populations and employed largely different procedures and measures, making for seemingly discrepant findings and implications. We propose, however, that many of these discrepancies can be resolved by considering how emotional states map onto motivational systems, and further examining how validated methods for inducing lateralized brain activity might affect TMT.

  15. A fusion-inhibiting peptide against Rift Valley fever virus inhibits multiple, diverse viruses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey W Koehler

    Full Text Available For enveloped viruses, fusion of the viral envelope with a cellular membrane is critical for a productive infection to occur. This fusion process is mediated by at least three classes of fusion proteins (Class I, II, and III based on the protein sequence and structure. For Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV, the glycoprotein Gc (Class II fusion protein mediates this fusion event following entry into the endocytic pathway, allowing the viral genome access to the cell cytoplasm. Here, we show that peptides analogous to the RVFV Gc stem region inhibited RVFV infectivity in cell culture by inhibiting the fusion process. Further, we show that infectivity can be inhibited for diverse, unrelated RNA viruses that have Class I (Ebola virus, Class II (Andes virus, or Class III (vesicular stomatitis virus fusion proteins using this single peptide. Our findings are consistent with an inhibition mechanism similar to that proposed for stem peptide fusion inhibitors of dengue virus in which the RVFV inhibitory peptide first binds to both the virion and cell membranes, allowing it to traffic with the virus into the endocytic pathway. Upon acidification and rearrangement of Gc, the peptide is then able to specifically bind to Gc and prevent fusion of the viral and endocytic membranes, thus inhibiting viral infection. These results could provide novel insights into conserved features among the three classes of viral fusion proteins and offer direction for the future development of broadly active fusion inhibitors.

  16. Molecular dynamics simulations of T-2410 and T-2429 HIV fusion inhibitors interacting with model membranes: Insight into peptide behavior, structure and dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mavioso, I C V C; de Andrade, V C R; Palace Carvalho, A J; Martins do Canto, A M T

    2017-09-01

    T-2410 and T-2429 are HIV fusion inhibitor peptides (FI) designed to present a higher efficiency even against HIV strains that developed resistance against other FIs. Similar peptides were shown to interact with model membranes both in the liquid disordered phase and in the liquid ordered state. Those results indicated that such interaction is important to function and could be correlated with their effectiveness. Extensive molecular dynamics simulations were carried out to investigate the interactions between both T-2410 and T-2429 with bilayers of pure 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-phosphatidylcholine (POPC) and a mixture of POPC/cholesterol (Chol) (1:1). It was observed that both peptides interact strongly with both membrane systems, especially with the POPC/Chol systems, where these peptides show the highest number of H-bonds observed so far. T-2410 and T-2429 showed higher extent of interaction with bilayers when compared to T-20 or T-1249 in previous studies. This is most notable in POPC/Chol membranes where, although able to form H-bonds with Chol, they do so to a lesser extent than T-1249 does, the latter being the only FI peptide so far that was observed to form H-bonds with Chol. This behavior suggests that interaction of FI peptides with rigid Chol rich membranes may not be as dependent from peptide/Chol H-bond formation as previous results of T-1249 behavior led to believe. As in other similar peptides, the higher ability to interact with membranes shown by T-2410 and T2429 is probably correlated with its higher inhibitory efficiency. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Semiallogenic fusions of MSI+ tumor cells and activated B cells induce MSI-specific T cell responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klier Ulrike

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Various strategies have been developed to transfer tumor-specific antigens into antigen presenting cells in order to induce cytotoxic T cell responses against tumor cells. One approach uses cellular vaccines based on fusions of autologous antigen presenting cells and allogeneic tumor cells. The fusion cells combine antigenicity of the tumor cell with optimal immunostimulatory capacity of the antigen presenting cells. Microsatellite instability caused by mutational inactivation of DNA mismatch repair genes results in translational frameshifts when affecting coding regions. It has been shown by us and others that these mutant proteins lead to the presentation of immunogenic frameshift peptides that are - in principle - recognized by a multiplicity of effector T cells. Methods We chose microsatellite instability-induced frameshift antigens as ideal to test for induction of tumor specific T cell responses by semiallogenic fusions of microsatellite instable carcinoma cells with CD40-activated B cells. Two fusion clones of HCT116 with activated B cells were selected for stimulation of T cells autologous to the B cell fusion partner. Outgrowing T cells were phenotyped and tested in functional assays. Results The fusion clones expressed frameshift antigens as well as high amounts of MHC and costimulatory molecules. Autologous T cells stimulated with these fusions were predominantly CD4+, activated, and reacted specifically against the fusion clones and also against the tumor cell fusion partner. Interestingly, a response toward 6 frameshift-derived peptides (of 14 tested could be observed. Conclusion Cellular fusions of MSI+ carcinoma cells and activated B cells combine the antigen-presenting capacity of the B cell with the antigenic repertoire of the carcinoma cell. They present frameshift-derived peptides and can induce specific and fully functional T cells recognizing not only fusion cells but also the carcinoma cells. These

  18. The p10 FAST protein fusion peptide functions as a cystine noose to induce cholesterol-dependent liposome fusion without liposome tubulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Key, Tim; Sarker, Muzaddid; de Antueno, Roberto; Rainey, Jan K; Duncan, Roy

    2015-02-01

    The reovirus p10 fusion-associated small transmembrane (FAST) proteins are the smallest known membrane fusion proteins, and evolved specifically to mediate cell-cell, rather than virus-cell, membrane fusion. The 36-40-residue ectodomains of avian reovirus (ARV) and Nelson Bay reovirus (NBV) p10 contain an essential intramolecular disulfide bond required for both cell-cell fusion and lipid mixing between liposomes. To more clearly define the functional, biochemical and biophysical features of this novel fusion peptide, synthetic peptides representing the p10 ectodomains of ARV and NBV were analyzed by solution-state NMR spectroscopy, circular dichroism spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy-based hydrophobicity analysis, and liposome binding and fusion assays. Results indicate that disulfide bond formation promotes exposure of hydrophobic residues, as indicated by bis-ANS binding and time-dependent peptide aggregation under aqueous conditions, implying the disulfide bond creates a small, geometrically constrained, cystine noose. Noose formation is required for peptide partitioning into liposome membranes and liposome lipid mixing, and electron microscopy revealed that liposome-liposome fusion occurs in the absence of liposome tubulation. In addition, p10 fusion peptide activity, but not membrane partitioning, is dependent on membrane cholesterol.

  19. Crystal Structure of a Soluble Fragment of the Membrane Fusion Protein HlyD in a Type I Secretion System of Gram-Negative Bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jin-Sik; Song, Saemee; Lee, Minho; Lee, Seunghwa; Lee, Kangseok; Ha, Nam-Chul

    2016-03-01

    The protein toxin HlyA of Escherichia coli is exported without a periplasmic intermediate by the type I secretion system (T1SS). The T1SS is composed of an inner membrane ABC transporter HlyB, an outer-membrane channel protein TolC, and a membrane fusion protein HlyD. However, the assembly of the T1SS remains to be elucidated. In this study, we determine the crystal structure of a part of the C-terminal periplasmic domain of HlyD. The long α-helical domain consisting of three α helices and a lipoyl domain was identified in the crystal structure. Based on the HlyD structure, we modeled the hexameric assembly of HlyD with a long α-helical barrel, which formed a complex with TolC in an intermeshing cogwheel-to-cogwheel manner, as observed in tripartite RND-type drug efflux pumps. These observations provide a structural blueprint for understanding the type I secretion system in pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria.

  20. Crystal Structure of Dengue Type 1 Envelope Protein in the Postfusion Conformation and its Implication for Receptor Binding, Membrane Fusion and Antibody Recognition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nayak, V.; Dessau, M; Kucera, K; Anthony, K; Ledizet, M; Modis, Y

    2009-01-01

    Dengue virus relies on a conformational change in its envelope protein, E, to fuse the viral lipid membrane with the endosomal membrane and thereby deliver the viral genome into the cytosol. We have determined the crystal structure of a soluble fragment E (sE) of dengue virus type 1 (DEN-1). The protein is in the postfusion conformation even though it was not exposed to a lipid membrane or detergent. At the domain I-domain III interface, 4 polar residues form a tight cluster that is absent in other flaviviral postfusion structures. Two of these residues, His-282 and His-317, are conserved in flaviviruses and are part of the pH sensor that triggers the fusogenic conformational change in E, at the reduced pH of the endosome. In the fusion loop, Phe-108 adopts a distinct conformation, forming additional trimer contacts and filling the bowl-shaped concavity observed at the tip of the DEN-2 sE trimer.

  1. Activation of TRPA1 by membrane permeable local anesthetics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kronewald Sergej

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Low concentrations of local anesthetics (LAs suppress cellular excitability by inhibiting voltage-gated Na+ channels. In contrast, LAs at high concentrations can be excitatory and neurotoxic. We recently demonstrated that LA-evoked activation of sensory neurons is mediated by the capsaicin receptor TRPV1, and, to a lesser extent by the irritant receptor TRPA1. LA-induced activation and sensitization of TRPV1 involves a domain that is similar, but not identical to the vanilloid-binding domain. Additionally, activation of TRPV1 by LAs involves PLC and PI(4,5P2-signalling. In the present study we aimed to characterize essential structural determinants for LA-evoked activation of TRPA1. Results Recombinant rodent and human TRPA1 were expressed in HEK293t cells and investigated by means of whole-cell patch clamp recordings. The LA lidocaine activates TRPA1 in a concentration-dependent manner. The membrane impermeable lidocaine-derivative QX-314 is inactive when applied extracellularly. Lidocaine-activated TRPA1-currents are blocked by the TRPA1-antagonist HC-030031. Lidocaine is also an inhibitor of TRPA1, an effect that is more obvious in rodent than in human TRPA1. This species-specific difference is linked to the pore region (transmembrane domain 5 and 6 as described for activation of TRPA1 by menthol. Unlike menthol-sensitivity however, lidocaine-sensitivity is not similarly determined by serine- and threonine-residues within TM5. Instead, intracellular cysteine residues known to be covalently bound by reactive TRPA1-agonists seem to mediate activation of TRPA1 by LAs. Conclusions The structural determinants involved in activation of TRPA1 by LAs are disparate from those involved in activation by menthol or those involved in activation of TRPV1 by LAs.

  2. Active and Progressive Exoskeleton Rehabilitation Using Multisource Information Fusion From EMG and Force-Position EPP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Yuanjie; Yin, Yuehong

    2013-12-01

    Although exoskeletons have received enormous attention and have been widely used in gait training and walking assistance in recent years, few reports addressed their application during early poststroke rehabilitation. This paper presents a healthcare technology for active and progressive early rehabilitation using multisource information fusion from surface electromyography and force-position extended physiological proprioception. The active-compliance control based on interaction force between patient and exoskeleton is applied to accelerate the recovery of the neuromuscular function, whereby progressive treatment through timely evaluation contributes to an effective and appropriate physical rehabilitation. Moreover, a clinic-oriented rehabilitation system, wherein a lower extremity exoskeleton with active compliance is mounted on a standing bed, is designed to ensure comfortable and secure rehabilitation according to the structure and control requirements. Preliminary experiments and clinical trial demonstrate valuable information on the feasibility, safety, and effectiveness of the progressive exoskeleton-assisted training.

  3. Fusion expression of pedA gone to obtain biologically active pediocin PA-1 in Escherichia coli

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Shan-na LIU; Ye HAN; Zhi-jiang ZHOU

    2011-01-01

    Two heterologous expression systems using thioredoxin (trxA) as a gene fusion part in Eschenchia coli weredeveloped to produce recombinant pediocin PA-1. Pediocin PA-1 structural gene pedA was isolated from Pediococcusacidi/actici PA003 by the method of polymerase chain reaction (PCR), then cloned into vector pET32a(+), and expressedas thioredoxin-PedA fusion protein in the host strain E. coil BL21 (DE3). The fusion protein was in the form of inclusionbody and was refolded before purification by nickel-iminodiacetic acid (Ni-IDA) agarose resin column. Biological activity ofrecombinant pediocin PA-1 was analyzed after cleavage of the fusion protein by enterokinase. Agar diffusion test re-vealed that 512-arbitrary unit (AU) recombinant pediocin PA-1 was obtained from 1 ml culture medium of E. coli(pPA003PED1) using Listeda monocytogenes as the indicator strain. Thioredoxin-PedA fusion gene was further clonedinto pET20b(+). Thioredoxin-PedA fusion protein was detected in both the periplasmic and cytoplasmic spaces. Therecombinant pediocin PA-1 from the soluble fraction attained 384 AU from 1 ml culture medium of E. coli (pPA003PED2).Therefore, biologically active pediocin PA-1 could be obtained by these two hybrid gene expression methods.

  4. In vitro Activity and Function of B7-H4-Ig Fusion Protein

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Susanne B; Kosicki, Michael; Svendsen, Signe Goul

    2013-01-01

    B7-H4 has been shown to inhibit T cell proliferation, cytokine production and cell cycle in vitro. B7-H4 deficient mice develop exacerbated disease in the mouse models of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) and Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis (EAE). On the other hand, B7-H4......-Ig fusion protein has been documented to assuage the symptoms in mouse models of RA, T1D, and multiple sclerosis in vivo. In the present study, B7-H4-Ig bound to the majority of human peripheral blood monocytes and NK cells, but not to either normal or activated T cells. B7-H4-Ig fusion protein...... was assayed for its effects in allogeneic mixed lymphocyte culture (MLC) systems. Soluble B7- H4-Ig had no significant effect in the MLC, but with a tendency to promote allogeneic response. Immobilized, but not soluble B7-H4-Ig inhibited plastic bound anti-CD3 mediated activation of T cells. This inhibition...

  5. Joining techniques for a reduced activation 12Cr steel for inertial fusion energy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hunt, R. M. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); El-Dasher, B. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Choi, B. W. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Torres, S. G. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)

    2014-10-01

    At Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, we are developing a reduced activation ferritic martensitic steel that is based on the ferritic martensitic steel HT-9. As a part of the development of this steel, we tested a series of welding processes for characterization, including conventional welds (electron beam, tungsten inert gas, and laser) as well as solid-state welds (hot isostatic pressing). We also heat treated the joints at various temperatures between 750 °C and 1050 °C to find a suitable normalization scheme. The modified HT-9 reduced activation ferritic martensitic steel appears highly suitable to welding and diffusion bonding. All welds showed good quality fusion zones with insignificant cracking or porosity. Additionally, a heat treatment schedule of 950 °C for one hour caused minimal grain growth while still converging the hardness of the base metal with that of the fusion and heat-affected zones. Also, modified HT-9 diffusion bonds that were created at temperatures of at least 950 °C for two hours at 103 MPa had interface tensile strengths of greater than 600 MPa. The diffusion bonds showed no evidence of increased hardness nor void formation at the diffusion bonded interface.

  6. Relationship between the loss of neutralizing antibody binding and fusion activity of the F protein of human respiratory syncytial virus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarisky Robert T

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract To elucidate the relationship between resistance to HRSV neutralizing antibodies directed against the F protein and the fusion activity of the F protein, a recombinant approach was used to generate a panel of mutations in the major antigenic sites of the F protein. These mutant proteins were assayed for neutralizing mAb binding (ch101F, palivizumab, and MAb19, level of expression, post-translational processing, cell surface expression, and fusion activity. Functional analysis of the fusion activity of the panel of mutations revealed that the fusion activity of the F protein is tolerant to multiple changes in the site II and IV/V/VI region in contrast with the somewhat limited spectrum of changes in the F protein identified from the isolation of HRSV neutralizing antibody virus escape mutants. This finding suggests that aspects other than fusion activity may limit the spectrum of changes tolerated within the F protein that are selected for by neutralizing antibodies.

  7. Nuclear envelope breakdown induced by herpes simplex virus type 1 involves the activity of viral fusion proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maric, Martina; Haugo, Alison C; Dauer, William; Johnson, David; Roller, Richard J

    2014-07-01

    Herpesvirus infection reorganizes components of the nuclear lamina usually without loss of integrity of the nuclear membranes. We report that wild-type HSV infection can cause dissolution of the nuclear envelope in transformed mouse embryonic fibroblasts that do not express torsinA. Nuclear envelope breakdown is accompanied by an eight-fold inhibition of virus replication. Breakdown of the membrane is much more limited during infection with viruses that lack the gB and gH genes, suggesting that breakdown involves factors that promote fusion at the nuclear membrane. Nuclear envelope breakdown is also inhibited during infection with virus that does not express UL34, but is enhanced when the US3 gene is deleted, suggesting that envelope breakdown may be enhanced by nuclear lamina disruption. Nuclear envelope breakdown cannot compensate for deletion of the UL34 gene suggesting that mixing of nuclear and cytoplasmic contents is insufficient to bypass loss of the normal nuclear egress pathway.

  8. Vesicle associated membrane protein (VAMP)-7 and VAMP-8, but not VAMP-2 or VAMP-3, are required for activation-induced degranulation of mature human mast cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sander, Leif E; Frank, Simon P C; Bolat, Seza; Blank, Ulrich; Galli, Thierry; Bigalke, Hans; Bischoff, Stephan C; Lorentz, Axel

    2008-03-01

    Mediator release from mast cells (MC) is a crucial step in allergic and non-allergic inflammatory disorders. However, the final events in response to activation leading to membrane fusion and thereby facilitating degranulation have hitherto not been analyzed in human MC. Soluble N-ethyl-maleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNARE) represent a highly conserved family of proteins that have been shown to mediate intracellular membrane fusion events. Here, we show that mature MC isolated from human intestinal tissue express soluble N-ethylmaleide sensitive factor attachment protein (SNAP)-23, Syntaxin (STX)-1B, STX-2, STX-3, STX-4, and STX-6 but not SNAP-25. Furthermore, we found that primary human MC express substantial amounts of vesicle associated membrane protein (VAMP)-3, VAMP-7 and VAMP-8 and, in contrast to previous reports about rodent MC, only low levels of VAMP-2. Furthermore, VAMP-7 and VAMP-8 were found to translocate to the plasma membrane and interact with SNAP-23 and STX-4 upon activation. Inhibition of SNAP-23, STX-4, VAMP-7 or VAMP-8, but not VAMP-2 or VAMP-3, resulted in a markedly reduced high-affinity IgE receptor-mediated histamine release. In summary, our data show that mature human MC express a specific pattern of SNARE and that VAMP-7 and VAMP-8, but not VAMP-2, are required for rapid degranulation.

  9. Autographa californica multicapsid nucleopolyhedrovirus efficiently infects Sf9 cells and transduces mammalian cells via direct fusion with the plasma membrane at low pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Sicong; Wang, Manli; Qiu, Zhijuan; Deng, Fei; Vlak, Just M; Hu, Zhihong; Wang, Hualin

    2010-05-01

    The budded virus (BV) of the Autographa californica multicapsid nucleopolyhedrovirus (AcMNPV) infects insect cells and transduces mammalian cells mainly through the endocytosis pathway. However, this study revealed that the treatment of the virus bound to Sf9 cells at low pH could efficiently rescue the infectivity of AcMNPV in the presence of endocytosis pathway inhibitors. A colocalization assay of the major capsid protein VP39 with the early endosome marker EEA1 showed that at low pH, AcMNPV entered Sf9 cells via an endosome-independent pathway. Using a fluorescent probe (R18), we showed that at low pH, the viral nucleocapsid entered Sf9 cells via direct fusion at the cell surface. By using the myosin-specific inhibitor 2,3-butanedione monoxime (BDM) and the microtubule inhibitor nocodazole, the low pH-triggered direct fusion was demonstrated to be dependent on myosin-like proteins and independent of microtubules. The reverse transcription-PCR of the IE1 gene as a marker for viral entry showed that the kinetics of AcMNPV in cells triggered by low pH was similar to that of the normal entry via endocytosis. The low pH-mediated infection assay and VP39 and EEA1 colocalization assay also demonstrated that AcMNPV could efficiently transduce mammalian cells via direct membrane fusion at the cell surface. More importantly, we found that a low-pH trigger could significantly improve the transduction efficiency of AcMNPV in mammalian cells, leading to the potential application of this method when using baculovirus as a vector for heterologous gene expression and for gene therapy.

  10. Herpesvirus gB-induced fusion between the virion envelope and outer nuclear membrane during virus egress is regulated by the viral US3 kinase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wisner, Todd W; Wright, Catherine C; Kato, Akihisa; Kawaguchi, Yasushi; Mou, Fan; Baines, Joel D; Roller, Richard J; Johnson, David C

    2009-04-01

    Herpesvirus capsids collect along the inner surface of the nuclear envelope and bud into the perinuclear space. Enveloped virions then fuse with the outer nuclear membrane (NM). We previously showed that herpes simplex virus (HSV) glycoproteins gB and gH act in a redundant fashion to promote fusion between the virion envelope and the outer NM. HSV mutants lacking both gB and gH accumulate enveloped virions in herniations, vesicles that bulge into the nucleoplasm. Earlier studies had shown that HSV mutants lacking the viral serine/threonine kinase US3 also accumulate herniations. Here, we demonstrate that HSV gB is phosphorylated in a US3-dependent manner in HSV-infected cells, especially in a crude nuclear fraction. Moreover, US3 directly phosphorylated the gB cytoplasmic (CT) domain in in vitro assays. Deletion of gB in the context of a US3-null virus did not add substantially to defects in nuclear egress. The majority of the US3-dependent phosphorylation of gB involved the CT domain and amino acid T887, a residue present in a motif similar to that recognized by US3 in other proteins. HSV recombinants lacking gH and expressing either gB substitution mutation T887A or a gB truncated at residue 886 displayed substantial defects in nuclear egress. We concluded that phosphorylation of the gB CT domain is important for gB-mediated fusion with the outer NM. This suggested a model in which the US3 kinase is incorporated into the tegument layer (between the capsid and envelope) in HSV virions present in the perinuclear space. By this packaging, US3 might be brought close to the gB CT tail, leading to phosphorylation and triggering fusion between the virion envelope and the outer NM.

  11. Cassava root membrane proteome reveals activities during storage root maturation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naconsie, Maliwan; Lertpanyasampatha, Manassawe; Viboonjun, Unchera; Netrphan, Supatcharee; Kuwano, Masayoshi; Ogasawara, Naotake; Narangajavana, Jarunya

    2016-01-01

    Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) is one of the most important crops of Thailand. Its storage roots are used as food, feed, starch production, and be the important source for biofuel and biodegradable plastic production. Despite the importance of cassava storage roots, little is known about the mechanisms involved in their formation. This present study has focused on comparison of the expression profiles of cassava root proteome at various developmental stages using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and LC-MS/MS. Based on an anatomical study using Toluidine Blue, the secondary growth was confirmed to be essential during the development of cassava storage root. To investigate biochemical processes occurring during storage root maturation, soluble and membrane proteins were isolated from storage roots harvested from 3-, 6-, 9-, and 12-month-old cassava plants. The proteins with differential expression pattern were analysed and identified to be associated with 8 functional groups: protein folding and degradation, energy, metabolism, secondary metabolism, stress response, transport facilitation, cytoskeleton, and unclassified function. The expression profiling of membrane proteins revealed the proteins involved in protein folding and degradation, energy, and cell structure were highly expressed during early stages of development. Integration of these data along with the information available in genome and transcriptome databases is critical to expand knowledge obtained solely from the field of proteomics. Possible role of identified proteins were discussed in relation with the activities during storage root maturation in cassava.

  12. Convergent mutations and kinase fusions lead to oncogenic STAT3 activation in anaplastic large cell lymphoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crescenzo, Ramona; Abate, Francesco; Lasorsa, Elena; Tabbo', Fabrizio; Gaudiano, Marcello; Chiesa, Nicoletta; Di Giacomo, Filomena; Spaccarotella, Elisa; Barbarossa, Luigi; Ercole, Elisabetta; Todaro, Maria; Boi, Michela; Acquaviva, Andrea; Ficarra, Elisa; Novero, Domenico; Rinaldi, Andrea; Tousseyn, Thomas; Rosenwald, Andreas; Kenner, Lukas; Cerroni, Lorenzo; Tzankov, Alexander; Ponzoni, Maurilio; Paulli, Marco; Weisenburger, Dennis; Chan, Wing C; Iqbal, Javeed; Piris, Miguel A; Zamo', Alberto; Ciardullo, Carmela; Rossi, Davide; Gaidano, Gianluca; Pileri, Stefano; Tiacci, Enrico; Falini, Brunangelo; Shultz, Leonard D; Mevellec, Laurence; Vialard, Jorge E; Piva, Roberto; Bertoni, Francesco; Rabadan, Raul; Inghirami, Giorgio

    2015-04-13

    A systematic characterization of the genetic alterations driving ALCLs has not been performed. By integrating massive sequencing strategies, we provide a comprehensive characterization of driver genetic alterations (somatic point mutations, copy number alterations, and gene fusions) in ALK(-) ALCLs. We identified activating mutations of JAK1 and/or STAT3 genes in ∼20% of 88 [corrected] ALK(-) ALCLs and demonstrated that 38% of systemic ALK(-) ALCLs displayed double lesions. Recurrent chimeras combining a transcription factor (NFkB2 or NCOR2) with a tyrosine kinase (ROS1 or TYK2) were also discovered in WT JAK1/STAT3 ALK(-) ALCL. All these aberrations lead to the constitutive activation of the JAK/STAT3 pathway, which was proved oncogenic. Consistently, JAK/STAT3 pathway inhibition impaired cell growth in vitro and in vivo.

  13. Enhanced exo-inulinase activity and stability by fusion of an inulin-binding module.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Shun-Hua; Liu, Yuan; Zhao, Yu-Juan; Chi, Zhe; Chi, Zhen-Ming; Liu, Guang-Lei

    2016-09-01

    In this study, an inulin-binding module from Bacillus macerans was successfully fused to an exo-inulinase from Kluyveromyces marxianus, creating a hybrid functional enzyme. The recombinant exo-inulinase (rINU), the hybrid enzyme (rINUIBM), and the recombinant inulin-binding module (rIBM) were, respectively, heterologously expressed and biochemically characterized. It was found that both the inulinase activity and the catalytic efficiency (k cat/K m(app)) of the rINUIBM were considerably higher than those of rINU. Though the rINU and the rINUIBM shared the same optimum pH of 4.5, the optimum temperature of the rINUIBM (60 °C) was 5 °C higher than that of the rINU. Notably, the fused IBM significantly enhanced both the pH stability and the thermostability of the rINUIBM, suggesting that the rINUIBM obtained would have more extensive potential applications. Furthermore, the fusion of the IBM could substantially improve the inulin-binding capability of the rINUIBM, which was consistent with the determination of the K m(app). This meant that the fused IBM could play a critical role in the recognition of polysaccharides and enhanced the hydrolase activity of the associated inulinase by increasing enzyme-substrate proximity. Besides, the extra supplement of the independent non-catalytic rIBM could also improve the inulinase activity of the rINU. However, this improvement was much better in case of the fusion. Consequently, the IBM could be designated as a multifunctional domain that was responsible for the activity enhancement, the stabilization, and the substrate binding of the rINUIBM. All these features obtained in this study make the rINUIBM become an attractive candidate for an efficient inulin hydrolysis.

  14. Review of Physical Activity Benefits and Potential Considerations for Individuals with Surgical Fusion of Spine for Scoliosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    KAKAR, RUMIT SINGH; SIMPSON, KATHY J.; DAS, BHIBHA M.; BROWN, CATHLEEN N.

    2017-01-01

    Evidence-based recommendations for physical activity following spinal fusion surgeries for idiopathic scoliosis are limited, specifically in the adolescent population. Individuals with scoliosis treated operatively or non-operatively have been reported to participate in less than 1–3 days/week of even mildly strenuous physical exercises. Over 40% of individuals with scoliosis returned to sports at a level lower than pre-operative participation levels or did not return at all post spinal fusion. It is particularly important for human movement specialists, such as physical therapists, occupational therapists, athletic trainers and kinesiologists to assist these individuals effectively transition to and maintain engagement in physical activity. This review provides a snapshot of common considerations and potential factors influencing individuals with spinal-fusion for scoliosis to participate in safe physical activity.

  15. Protein engineering,expression,and activity of a novel fusion protein possessing keratinocyte growth factor 2 and fibronectin

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wonmo Kang; Junhyeog Jang

    2009-01-01

    Growth factor-induced proliferation and differentiation often require adhesion of cells to the extracellular matrix proteins such as fibronectin(FN).In this study,we aimed to investigate the effect of protein engineering of the keratinocyte growth factor 2(KGF2)fused to the FN on the mitogenic activity of KGF2.The fusion protein(KGF2-FN10),which was expressed in Escherichia coli,showed significantly enhanced mitogenic activity of KGF2 on human keratinocytes.Moreover,KGF2-FN10 fusion protein showed significantly increased activity to differentiate keratinocytes from native KGF2.In conclusion,these results suggest that KGF2-FN10 fusion protein has certain advantages over native KGF2 and may offer a novel strategy to potentiate the therapeutic effect of KGF2.

  16. Features of a spatially constrained cystine loop in the p10 FAST protein ectodomain define a new class of viral fusion peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barry, Christopher; Key, Tim; Haddad, Rami; Duncan, Roy

    2010-05-28

    The reovirus fusion-associated small transmembrane (FAST) proteins are the smallest known viral membrane fusion proteins. With ectodomains of only approximately 20-40 residues, it is unclear how such diminutive fusion proteins can mediate cell-cell fusion and syncytium formation. Contained within the 40-residue ectodomain of the p10 FAST protein resides an 11-residue sequence of moderately apolar residues, termed the hydrophobic patch (HP). Previous studies indicate the p10 HP shares operational features with the fusion peptide motifs found within the enveloped virus membrane fusion proteins. Using biotinylation assays, we now report that two highly conserved cysteine residues flanking the p10 HP form an essential intramolecular disulfide bond to create a cystine loop. Mutagenic analyses revealed that both formation of the cystine loop and p10 membrane fusion activity are highly sensitive to changes in the size and spatial arrangement of amino acids within the loop. The p10 cystine loop may therefore function as a cystine noose, where fusion peptide activity is dependent on structural constraints within the noose that force solvent exposure of key hydrophobic residues. Moreover, inhibitors of cell surface thioreductase activity indicate that disruption of the disulfide bridge is important for p10-mediated membrane fusion. This is the first example of a viral fusion peptide composed of a small, spatially constrained cystine loop whose function is dependent on altered loop formation, and it suggests the p10 cystine loop represents a new class of viral fusion peptides.

  17. Evidence of parasexual activity in "asexual amoebae" Cochliopodium spp. (Amoebozoa): extensive cellular and nuclear fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tekle, Yonas I; Anderson, O Roger; Lecky, Ariel F

    2014-09-01

    The majority of microbial eukaryotes have long been considered asexual, though new evidence indicates sex, or sexual-like (parasexual) behaviors that deviate from the usual union of two gametes, among other variant aspects. Over a dozen amoebozoans are implicated to have sexual stages. However, the exact mechanism by which sex occurs in these lineages remains elusive. This is mainly due to the diverse quality and cryptic nature of their life cycle. In this study we present evidence of some previously unreported aspects of the life cycle of an amoeba, Cochliopodium, that undergoes unusual intraspecific interactions using light microscopy and immunocytochemistry. Similar to other amoebozoans, Cochliopodium, is considered asexual with no published reports of sex or parasexuality. We also investigated environmental conditions that govern the observed intraspecific interactions. Both light microscopic and immunocytochemistry evidence demonstrates Cochliopodium undergoes cellular fusion (plasmogamy) and nuclear fusion (karyogamy). Large plasmodia eventually undergo karyogamy and contain large fused, polyploid, nuclei. These are observed to fragment, subsequently, by karyotomy (nuclear fission) and cytoplasmic fission to yield uninucleated amoebae. This process could lead to a non-meiotic, parasexual exchange of chromosomes in Cochliopodium. These findings strongly suggest that Cochliopodium is involved in parasexual activity and should no longer be considered strictly asexual.

  18. Red wine activates plasma membrane redox system in human erythrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedesco, Idolo; Moccia, Stefania; Volpe, Silvestro; Alfieri, Giovanna; Strollo, Daniela; Bilotto, Stefania; Spagnuolo, Carmela; Di Renzo, Massimo; Aquino, Rita P; Russo, Gian Luigi

    2016-01-01

    In the present study, we report that polyphenols present in red wine obtained by a controlled microvinification process are able to protect human erythrocytes from oxidative stress and to activate Plasma Membrane Redox System (PMRS). Human plasma obtained from healthy subjects was incubated in the presence of whole red wine at a concentration corresponding to 9.13-73 μg/ml gallic acid equivalents to verify the capacity to protect against hypochlorous acid (HOCl)-induced plasma oxidation and to minimize chloramine formation. Red wine reduced hemolysis and chloramine formation induced by HOCl of 40 and 35%, respectively. PMRS present on human erythrocytes transfers electrons from intracellular molecules to extracellular electron acceptors. We demonstrated that whole red wine activated PMRS activity in human erythrocytes isolated from donors in a dose-dependent manner with a maximum at about 70-100 μg/ml gallic acid equivalents. We also showed that red wine increased glutathione (GSH) levels and erythrocytic antioxidant capacity, measured by 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) quenching assay. Furthermore, we reported that GSH played a crucial role in regulating PMRS activity in erythrocytes. In fact, the effect of iodoacetamide, an alkylating agent that induces depletion of intracellular GSH, was completely counteracted by red wine. Bioactive compounds present in red wine, such as gallic acid, resveratrol, catechin, and quercetin were unable to activate PMRS when tested at the concentrations normally present in aged red wines. On the contrary, the increase of PMRS activity was associated with the anthocyanin fraction, suggesting the capacity of this class of compounds to positively modulate PMRS enzymatic activity.

  19. [Preterm premature rupture of membranes: active or expectant management?].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kayem, G; Maillard, F

    2009-04-01

    Preterm premature rupture of membranes (PPROM) occurs in 3% of pregnancies and is responsible for 30% of preterm births. The management is discussed between active and expectant management. French recommendations let open both possibilities. The risks described in the case of PPROM are those of prematurity, maternofetal infection, acute procidence of the umbilical cord and abruptio placentae. Before 32 weeks of gestation (WG) and even 34 WG, a prolongation of one week of gestational age significantly decreases neonatal mortality and morbidity. Therefore, most of the authors choose expectant management in case of PPROM. Between 34 and 37 WG, the risk of rare severe morbidity associated with prematurity has to be balanced with risks of an acute maternofetal infection and of abruptio placentae. Further randomized trials are required to choose a type of management with a sufficient level of evidence.

  20. Outer membrane vesicle: a macromolecule with multifunctional activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moshiri, Arfa; Dashtbani-Roozbehani, Abolfazl; Najar Peerayeh, Shahin; Siadat, Seyed Davar

    2012-07-01

    Nowadays adjuvants are extensively used as immuno-stimulatory and immuno-modulatory compounds as components of subunit and combination vaccine formulations. The adjuvants of microbial origin are more frequently used among currently used licensed or experimental adjuvants. The outer membrane vesicle (OMV) of Neisseria meningitidis is among the newly studied components of microbial origin, which could be applied as an adjuvant. Although the potency of OMV as a carrier (conjugated to a hapten) is now proven, the adjuvant properties of OMV have particular significance as a potential target for protective immunity. Since it has immune-stimulatory activity, OMV has been utilized in vaccine development. This commentary reviews the different applications of OMV as potential adjuvant in the field of vaccine development.

  1. Towards fusion energy as a sustainable energy source: Activities at DTU Physics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Jesper; Christensen, Alexander Simon; Dam, Magnus

    2014-01-01

    Nuclear fusion – the process from which the Sun derives its energy – holds the potential to become a clean,safe, highly efficient, and virtually inexhaustible energy source for the future. To mimic this process on earth, experimental fusion devices seek to heat gas to millions of degrees (creating...... a fusion plasma) and to confine it within magnetic fields. Learning how such plasmas behave and can be controlled is a crucial step towards realizing fusion as a sustainable energy source.At the Plasma Physics and Fusion Energy (PPFE) section at DTU Physics, we are exploring these issues,focusing on areas...... of high priority on the way towards a working fusion power plant. On the theoreticalfront, we are simulating plasma turbulence and transport of heat and particles in fusion plasmas (Fig. 1a). These issues play a key role in determining how the plasma behaves globally and how well it remains confined...

  2. Functional, photochemically active, and chemically asymmetric membranes by interfacial polymerization of derivatized multifunctional prepolymers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lonsdale, H.K.; Wamser, C.C.

    1990-04-17

    The preparation of a novel class of thin film membranes by interfacial polymerization is disclosed, said membranes incorporating as part of their polymeric structure the functionality of monomeric or oligomeric precursors. Specific embodiments include porphyrin and phthalocyanine derivatives that are photochemically or electrochemically active, as well as chemically asymmetric membranes.

  3. Oscillations and multiple steady states in active membrane transport models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira, F M; Bisch, P M

    1994-01-01

    The dynamic behavior of some non-linear extensions of the six-state alternating access model for active membrane transport is investigated. We use stoichio-metric network analysis to study the stability of steady states. The bifurcation analysis has been done through standard numerical methods. For the usual six-state model we have proved that there is only one steady state, which is globally asymptotically stable. When we added an autocatalytic step we found self-oscillations. For the competition between a monomer cycle and a dimer cycle, with steps of dimer formation, we have also found self-oscillations. We have also studied models involving the formation of a complex with other molecules. The addition of two steps for formation of a complex of the monomer with another molecule does not alter either the number or the stability of steady states of the basic six-state model. The model which combines the formation of a complex with an autocatalytic step shows both self-oscillations and multiple steady states. The results lead us to conclude that oscillations could be produced by active membrane transport systems if the transport cycle contains a sufficiently large number of steps (six in the present case) and is coupled to at least one autocatalytic reaction,. Oscillations are also predicted when the monomer cycle is coupled to a dimer cycle. In fact, the autocatalytic reaction can be seen as a simplification of the model involving competition between monomer and dimer cycles, which seems to be a more realistic description of biological systems. A self-regulation mechanism of the pumps, related to the multiple stationary states, is expected only for a combined effect of autocatalysis and formation of complexes with other molecules. Within the six-state model this model also leads to oscillation.

  4. Functional fluorescent protein insertions in herpes simplex virus gB report on gB conformation before and after execution of membrane fusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John R Gallagher

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Entry of herpes simplex virus (HSV into a target cell requires complex interactions and conformational changes by viral glycoproteins gD, gH/gL, and gB. During viral entry, gB transitions from a prefusion to a postfusion conformation, driving fusion of the viral envelope with the host cell membrane. While the structure of postfusion gB is known, the prefusion conformation of gB remains elusive. As the prefusion conformation of gB is a critical target for neutralizing antibodies, we set out to describe its structure by making genetic insertions of fluorescent proteins (FP throughout the gB ectodomain. We created gB constructs with FP insertions in each of the three globular domains of gB. Among 21 FP insertion constructs, we found 8 that allowed gB to remain membrane fusion competent. Due to the size of an FP, regions in gB that tolerate FP insertion must be solvent exposed. Two FP insertion mutants were cell-surface expressed but non-functional, while FP insertions located in the crown were not surface expressed. This is the first report of placing a fluorescent protein insertion within a structural domain of a functional viral fusion protein, and our results are consistent with a model of prefusion HSV gB constructed from the prefusion VSV G crystal structure. Additionally, we found that functional FP insertions from two different structural domains could be combined to create a functional form of gB labeled with both CFP and YFP. FRET was measured with this construct, and we found that when co-expressed with gH/gL, the FRET signal from gB was significantly different from the construct containing CFP alone, as well as gB found in syncytia, indicating that this construct and others of similar design are likely to be powerful tools to monitor the conformation of gB in any model system accessible to light microscopy.

  5. Analysis of Induced Gamma Activation by D-T Neutrons in Selected Fusion Reactor Relevant Materials with EAF-2010

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klix Axel

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Samples of lanthanum, erbium and titanium which are constituents of structural materials, insulating coatings and tritium breeder for blankets of fusion reactor designs have been irradiated in a fusion peak neutron field. The induced gamma activities were measured and the results were used to check calculations with the European activation system EASY-2010. Good agreement for the prediction of major contributors to the contact dose rate of the materials was found, but for minor contributors the calculation deviated up to 50%.

  6. Protease activity of the API2-MALT1 fusion oncoprotein in MALT lymphoma development and treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosebeck, Shaun; Lucas, Peter C; McAllister-Lucas, Linda M

    2011-05-01

    Gastric mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma is a prototypical cancer that occurs in the setting of chronic inflammation and an important model for understanding how deregulated NF-κB transcriptional activity contributes to malignancy. Most gastric MALT lymphomas require ongoing antigenic stimulation for continued tumor growth, and Stage I disease is usually cured by eradicating the causative microorganism, Helicobacter pylori, with antibiotics. However, in a subset of MALT lymphomas, chromosomal translocations are acquired that render the lymphoma antigen-independent. The recurrent translocation t(11;18)(q21;q21) is associated with failure to respond to antibiotic therapy and increased rate of dissemination. This translocation creates the API2-MALT1 fusion oncoprotein, which comprises the amino terminus of inhibitor of apoptosis 2 (API2 or cIAP2) fused to the carboxy terminus of MALT1. A common characteristic of chromosomal translocations in MALT lymphoma, including t(11;18), is that genes involved in the regulation of the NF-κB transcription factor are targeted by the translocations, and these genetic perturbations thereby result in deregulated, constitutive NF-κB stimulation. In the last decade, great insights into the roles of API2 and MALT1 in NF-κB signaling have been made. For example, recent pivotal studies have uncovered the long sought-after proteolytic activity of MALT1 and have demonstrated its critical involvement in the survival of certain lymphomas. Here, we review the current understanding of the role of MALT1 in normal lymphocyte function and lymphomagenesis. We then highlight our recent work that has revealed an intriguing link between the proteolytic activity of the API2-MALT1 fusion and its ability to influence lymphomagenesis by cleaving a key NF-κB regulatory protein, NF-κB-inducing kinase.

  7. The Expression of Sperm Membrane Peptide-Hepatitis B Surface Antigen Fusion Protein with Recombinant Vaccinia Virus

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨晓鸣; 赵峰; 严缘昌; 李光地; 汪垣

    1998-01-01

    A synthetic oligonucleotide, HSD-2a, encoding a peptide segment of the extracellular domain of a human sperm membrane protein, YWK-Ⅱ, was fused with hepatitis B surface antigen gene (HBs gene). The fused gene was then cloned to pUC18 plasmid.

  8. Membrane topology analysis of HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein gp41

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao Dan

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The gp41 subunit of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env has been widely regarded as a type I transmembrane protein with a single membrane-spanning domain (MSD. An alternative topology model suggested multiple MSDs. The major discrepancy between the two models is that the cytoplasmic Kennedy sequence in the single MSD model is assigned as the extracellular loop accessible to neutralizing antibodies in the other model. We examined the membrane topology of the gp41 subunit in both prokaryotic and mammalian systems. We attached topological markers to the C-termini of serially truncated gp41. In the prokaryotic system, we utilized a green fluorescent protein (GFP that is only active in the cytoplasm. The tag protein (HaloTag and a membrane-impermeable ligand specific to HaloTag was used in the mammalian system. Results In the absence of membrane fusion, both the prokaryotic and mammalian systems (293FT cells supported the single MSD model. In the presence of membrane fusion in mammalian cells (293CD4 cells, the data obtained seem to support the multiple MSD model. However, the region predicted to be a potential MSD is the highly hydrophilic Kennedy sequence and is least likely to become a MSD based on several algorithms. Further analysis revealed the induction of membrane permeability during membrane fusion, allowing the membrane-impermeable ligand and antibodies to cross the membrane. Therefore, we cannot completely rule out the possible artifacts. Addition of membrane fusion inhibitors or alterations of the MSD sequence decreased the induction of membrane permeability. Conclusions It is likely that a single MSD model for HIV-1 gp41 holds true even in the presence of membrane fusion. The degree of the augmentation of membrane permeability we observed was dependent on the membrane fusion and sequence of the MSD.

  9. Nuclear envelope breakdown induced by herpes simplex virus type 1 involves the activity of viral fusion proteins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maric, Martina; Haugo, Alison C. [Department of Microbiology, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242 (United States); Dauer, William [Department of Neurology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (United States); Johnson, David [Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Oregon Health Sciences University, Portland, OR 97201 (United States); Roller, Richard J., E-mail: richard-roller@uiowa.edu [Department of Microbiology, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242 (United States)

    2014-07-15

    Herpesvirus infection reorganizes components of the nuclear lamina usually without loss of integrity of the nuclear membranes. We report that wild-type HSV infection can cause dissolution of the nuclear envelope in transformed mouse embryonic fibroblasts that do not express torsinA. Nuclear envelope breakdown is accompanied by an eight-fold inhibition of virus replication. Breakdown of the membrane is much more limited during infection with viruses that lack the gB and gH genes, suggesting that breakdown involves factors that promote fusion at the nuclear membrane. Nuclear envelope breakdown is also inhibited during infection with virus that does not express UL34, but is enhanced when the US3 gene is deleted, suggesting that envelope breakdown may be enhanced by nuclear lamina disruption. Nuclear envelope breakdown cannot compensate for deletion of the UL34 gene suggesting that mixing of nuclear and cytoplasmic contents is insufficient to bypass loss of the normal nuclear egress pathway. - Highlights: • We show that wild-type HSV can induce breakdown of the nuclear envelope in a specific cell system. • The viral fusion proteins gB and gH are required for induction of nuclear envelope breakdown. • Nuclear envelope breakdown cannot compensate for deletion of the HSV UL34 gene.

  10. Rapid and sensitive lentivirus vector-based conditional gene expression assay to monitor and quantify cell fusion activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuel A F V Gonçalves

    Full Text Available Cell-to-cell fusion is involved in multiple fundamental biological processes. Prominent examples include osteoclast and giant cell formation, fertilization and skeletal myogenesis which involve macrophage, sperm-egg and myoblast fusion, respectively. Indeed, the importance of cell fusion is underscored by the wide range of homeostatic as well as pathologic processes in which it plays a key role. Therefore, rapid and sensitive systems to trace and measure cell fusion events in various experimental systems are in demand. Here, we introduce a bipartite cell fusion monitoring system based on a genetic switch responsive to the site-specific recombinase FLP. To allow flexible deployment in both dividing as well as non-dividing cell populations, inducer and reporter modules were incorporated in lentivirus vector particles. Moreover, the recombinase-inducible transcription units were designed in such a way as to minimize basal activity and chromosomal position effects in the "off" and "on" states, respectively. The lentivirus vector-based conditional gene expression assay was validated in primary human mesenchymal stem cells and in a differentiation model based on muscle progenitor cells from a Duchenne muscular dystrophy patient using reporter genes compatible with live- and single-cell imaging and with whole population measurements. Using the skeletal muscle cell differentiation model, we showed that the new assay displays low background activity, a 2-log dynamic range, high sensitivity and is amenable to the investigation of cell fusion kinetics. The utility of the bipartite cell fusion monitoring system was underscored by a study on the impact of drug- and RNAi-mediated p38 MAPK inhibition on human myocyte differentiation. Finally, building on the capacity of lentivirus vectors to readily generate transgenic animals the present FLP-inducible system should be adaptable, alone or together with Cre/loxP-based assays, to cell lineage tracing and

  11. Activation of TRPV1 channels inhibits mechanosensitive Piezo channel activity by depleting membrane phosphoinositides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borbiro, Istvan; Badheka, Doreen; Rohacs, Tibor

    2015-02-10

    Capsaicin is an activator of the heat-sensitive TRPV1 (transient receptor potential vanilloid 1) ion channels and has been used as a local analgesic. We found that activation of TRPV1 channels with capsaicin either in dorsal root ganglion neurons or in a heterologous expression system inhibited the mechanosensitive Piezo1 and Piezo2 channels by depleting phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PI(4,5)P2] and its precursor phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate [PI(4)P] from the plasma membrane through Ca(2+)-induced phospholipase Cδ (PLCδ) activation. Experiments with chemically inducible phosphoinositide phosphatases and receptor-induced activation of PLCβ indicated that inhibition of Piezo channels required depletion of both PI(4)P and PI(4,5)P2. The mechanically activated current amplitudes decreased substantially in the excised inside-out configuration, where the membrane patch containing Piezo1 channels is removed from the cell. PI(4,5)P2 and PI(4)P applied to these excised patches inhibited this decrease. Thus, we concluded that Piezo channel activity requires the presence of phosphoinositides, and the combined depletion of PI(4,5)P2 and PI(4)P reduces channel activity. In addition to revealing a role for distinct membrane lipids in mechanosensitive ion channel regulation, these data suggest that inhibition of Piezo2 channels may contribute to the analgesic effect of capsaicin.

  12. PI(3,5)P(2) controls membrane trafficking by direct activation of mucolipin Ca(2+) release channels in the endolysosome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Xian-ping; Shen, Dongbiao; Wang, Xiang; Dawson, Taylor; Li, Xinran; Zhang, Qi; Cheng, Xiping; Zhang, Yanling; Weisman, Lois S; Delling, Markus; Xu, Haoxing

    2010-07-13

    Membrane fusion and fission events in intracellular trafficking are controlled by both intraluminal Ca(2+) release and phosphoinositide (PIP) signalling. However, the molecular identities of the Ca(2+) release channels and the target proteins of PIPs are elusive. In this paper, by direct patch-clamping of the endolysosomal membrane, we report that PI(3,5)P(2), an endolysosome-specific PIP, binds and activates endolysosome-localized mucolipin transient receptor potential (TRPML) channels with specificity and potency. Both PI(3,5)P(2)-deficient cells and cells that lack TRPML1 exhibited enlarged endolysosomes/vacuoles and trafficking defects in the late endocytic pathway. We find that the enlarged vacuole phenotype observed in PI(3,5)P(2)-deficient mouse fibroblasts is suppressed by overexpression of TRPML1. Notably, this PI(3,5)P(2)-dependent regulation of TRPML1 is evolutionarily conserved. In budding yeast, hyperosmotic stress induces Ca(2+) release from the vacuole. In this study, we show that this release requires both PI(3,5)P(2) production and a yeast functional TRPML homologue. We propose that TRPMLs regulate membrane trafficking by transducing information regarding PI(3,5)P(2) levels into changes in juxtaorganellar Ca(2+), thereby triggering membrane fusion/fission events.

  13. Development of a protease activity assay using heat-sensitive Tus-GFP fusion protein substrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Askin, Samuel P; Morin, Isabelle; Schaeffer, Patrick M

    2011-08-15

    Proteases are implicated in various diseases and several have been identified as potential drug targets or biomarkers. As a result, protease activity assays that can be performed in high throughput are essential for the screening of inhibitors in drug discovery programs. Here we describe the development of a simple, general method for the characterization of protease activity and its use for inhibitor screening. GFP was genetically fused to a comparatively unstable Tus protein through an interdomain linker containing a specially designed protease site, which can be proteolyzed. When this Tus-GFP fusion protein substrate is proteolyzed it releases GFP, which remains in solution after a short heat denaturation and centrifugation step used to eliminate uncleaved Tus-GFP. Thus, the increase in GFP fluorescence is directly proportional to protease activity. We validated the protease activity assay with three different proteases, i.e., trypsin, caspase 3, and neutrophil elastase, and demonstrated that it can be used to determine protease activity and the effect of inhibitors with small sample volumes in just a few simple steps using a fluorescence plate reader.

  14. Development of next generation tempered and ODS reduced activation ferritic/martensitic steels for fusion energy applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zinkle, S. J.; Boutard, J. L.; Hoelzer, D. T.; Kimura, A.; Lindau, R.; Odette, G. R.; Rieth, M.; Tan, L.; Tanigawa, H.

    2017-09-01

    Reduced activation ferritic/martensitic steels are currently the most technologically mature option for the structural material of proposed fusion energy reactors. Advanced next-generation higher performance steels offer the opportunity for improvements in fusion reactor operational lifetime and reliability, superior neutron radiation damage resistance, higher thermodynamic efficiency, and reduced construction costs. The two main strategies for developing improved steels for fusion energy applications are based on (1) an evolutionary pathway using computational thermodynamics modelling and modified thermomechanical treatments (TMT) to produce higher performance reduced activation ferritic/martensitic (RAFM) steels and (2) a higher risk, potentially higher payoff approach based on powder metallurgy techniques to produce very high strength oxide dispersion strengthened (ODS) steels capable of operation to very high temperatures and with potentially very high resistance to fusion neutron-induced property degradation. The current development status of these next-generation high performance steels is summarized, and research and development challenges for the successful development of these materials are outlined. Material properties including temperature-dependent uniaxial yield strengths, tensile elongations, high-temperature thermal creep, Charpy impact ductile to brittle transient temperature (DBTT) and fracture toughness behaviour, and neutron irradiation-induced low-temperature hardening and embrittlement and intermediate-temperature volumetric void swelling (including effects associated with fusion-relevant helium and hydrogen generation) are described for research heats of the new steels.

  15. Synthetic aperture microwave imaging with active probing for fusion plasma diagnostics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shevchenko, Vladimir F.; Freethy, Simon J.; Huang, Billy K. [EURATOM/CCFE Fusion Association, Culham, Abingdon, Oxon, 0X14 3DB (United Kingdom); Vann, Roddy G. L. [York Plasma Institute, Dept. of Physics, University of York, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom)

    2014-08-21

    A Synthetic Aperture Microwave Imaging (SAMI) system has been designed and built to obtain 2-D images at several frequencies from fusion plasmas. SAMI uses a phased array of linearly polarised antennas. The array configuration has been optimised to achieve maximum synthetic aperture beam efficiency. The signals received by antennas are down-converted to the intermediate frequency range and then recorded in a full vector form. Full vector signals allow beam focusing and image reconstruction in both real time and a post-processing mode. SAMI can scan over 16 pre-programmed frequencies in the range of 10-35GHz with a switching time of 300ns. The system operates in 2 different modes simultaneously: both a 'passive' imaging of plasma emission and also an 'active' imaging of the back-scattered signal of the radiation launched by one of the antennas from the same array. This second mode is similar to so-called Doppler backscattering (DBS) reflectometry with 2-D resolution of the propagation velocity of turbulent structures. Both modes of operation show good performance in fusion plasma experiments on Mega Amp Spherical Tokamak (MAST). We have obtained the first ever 2-D images of BXO mode conversion windows. With active probing, first ever turbulence velocity maps have been obtained. We present an overview of the diagnostic and discuss recent results. In contrast to quasi-optical microwave imaging systems SAMI requires neither big aperture viewing ports nor large 2-D detector arrays to achieve the desired imaging resolution. The number of effective 'pixels' of the synthesized image is proportional to the number of receiving antennas squared. Thus only a small number of optimised antennas is sufficient for the majority of applications. Possible implementation of SAMI on ITERand DEMO is discussed.

  16. Synthetic aperture microwave imaging with active probing for fusion plasma diagnostics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shevchenko, Vladimir F.; Freethy, Simon J.; Huang, Billy K.; Vann, Roddy G. L.

    2014-08-01

    A Synthetic Aperture Microwave Imaging (SAMI) system has been designed and built to obtain 2-D images at several frequencies from fusion plasmas. SAMI uses a phased array of linearly polarised antennas. The array configuration has been optimised to achieve maximum synthetic aperture beam efficiency. The signals received by antennas are down-converted to the intermediate frequency range and then recorded in a full vector form. Full vector signals allow beam focusing and image reconstruction in both real time and a post-processing mode. SAMI can scan over 16 pre-programmed frequencies in the range of 10-35GHz with a switching time of 300ns. The system operates in 2 different modes simultaneously: both a 'passive' imaging of plasma emission and also an 'active' imaging of the back-scattered signal of the radiation launched by one of the antennas from the same array. This second mode is similar to so-called Doppler backscattering (DBS) reflectometry with 2-D resolution of the propagation velocity of turbulent structures. Both modes of operation show good performance in fusion plasma experiments on Mega Amp Spherical Tokamak (MAST). We have obtained the first ever 2-D images of BXO mode conversion windows. With active probing, first ever turbulence velocity maps have been obtained. We present an overview of the diagnostic and discuss recent results. In contrast to quasi-optical microwave imaging systems SAMI requires neither big aperture viewing ports nor large 2-D detector arrays to achieve the desired imaging resolution. The number of effective 'pixels' of the synthesized image is proportional to the number of receiving antennas squared. Thus only a small number of optimised antennas is sufficient for the majority of applications. Possible implementation of SAMI on ITERand DEMO is discussed.

  17. Carbonic anhydrase activity in Arabidopsis thaliana thylakoid membrane and fragments enriched with PSI or PSII.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ignatova, Lyudmila K; Rudenko, Natalia N; Mudrik, Vilen A; Fedorchuk, Tat'yana P; Ivanov, Boris N

    2011-12-01

    The procedure of isolating the thylakoids and the thylakoid membrane fragments enriched with either photosystem I or photosystem II (PSI- and PSII-membranes) from Arabidopsis thaliana leaves was developed. It differed from the one used with pea and spinach in durations of detergent treatment and centrifugation, and in concentrations of detergent and Mg(2+) in the media. Both the thylakoid and the fragments preserved carbonic anhydrase (CA) activities. Using nondenaturing electrophoresis followed by detection of CA activity in the gel stained with bromo thymol blue, one low molecular mass carrier of CA activity was found in the PSI-membranes, and two carriers, a low molecular mass one and a high molecular mass one, were found in the PSII-membranes. The proteins in the PSII-membranes differed in their sensitivity to acetazolamide (AA), a specific CA inhibitor. AA at 5 × 10(-7) M inhibited the CA activity of the high molecular mass protein but stimulated the activity of the low molecular mass carrier in the PSII-membranes. At the same concentration, AA moderately inhibited, by 30%, the CA activity of PSI-membranes. CA activity of the PSII-membranes was almost completely suppressed by the lipophilic CA inhibitor, ethoxyzolamide at 10(-9) M, whereas CA activity of the PSI-membranes was inhibited by this inhibitor even at 5 × 10(-7) M just the same as for AA. The observed distribution of CA activity in the thylakoid membranes from A. thaliana was close to the one found in the membranes of pea, evidencing the general pattern of CA activity in the thylakoid membranes of C3-plants.

  18. Enzymatically active high-flux selectively gas-permeable membranes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiang, Ying-Bing; Cecchi, Joseph L.; Rempe, Susan; FU, Yaqin; Brinker, C. Jeffrey

    2016-01-26

    An ultra-thin, catalyzed liquid transport medium-based membrane structure fabricated with a porous supporting substrate may be used for separating an object species such as a carbon dioxide object species. Carbon dioxide flux through this membrane structures may be several orders of magnitude higher than traditional polymer membranes with a high selectivity to carbon dioxide. Other gases such as molecular oxygen, molecular hydrogen, and other species including non-gaseous species, for example ionic materials, may be separated using variations to the membrane discussed.

  19. How Lipid Membranes Affect Pore Forming Toxin Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojko, Nejc; Anderluh, Gregor

    2015-12-15

    Pore forming toxins (PFTs) evolved to permeate the plasma membrane of target cells. This is achieved in a multistep mechanism that usually involves binding of soluble protein monomer to the lipid membrane, oligomerization at the plane of the membrane, and insertion of part of the polypeptide chain across the lipid membrane to form a conductive channel. Introduced pores allow uncontrolled transport of solutes across the membrane, inflicting damage to the target cell. PFTs are usually studied from the perspective of structure-function relationships, often neglecting the important role of the bulk membrane properties on the PFT mechanism of action. In this Account, we discuss how membrane lateral heterogeneity, thickness, and fluidity influence the pore forming process of PFTs. In general, lipid molecules are more accessible for binding in fluid membranes due to steric reasons. When PFT specifically binds ordered domains, it usually recognizes a specific lipid distribution pattern, like sphingomyelin (SM) clusters or SM/cholesterol complexes, and not individual lipid species. Lipid domains were also suggested to act as an additional concentration platform facilitating PFT oligomerization, but this is yet to be shown. The last stage in PFT action is the insertion of the transmembrane segment across the membranes to build the transmembrane pore walls. Conformational changes are a spontaneous process, and sufficient free energy has to be available for efficient membrane penetration. Therefore, fluid bilayers are permeabilized more readily in comparison to highly ordered and thicker liquid ordered lipid phase (Lo). Energetically more costly insertion into the Lo phase can be driven by the hydrophobic mismatch between the thinner liquid disordered phase (Ld) and large protein complexes, which are unable to tilt like single transmembrane segments. In the case of proteolipid pores, membrane properties can directly modulate pore size, stability, and even selectivity. Finally

  20. Dynamic Membrane for Cross-flow Micro-filtration in Treating Activated Sludge

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    DENG Chun-hua; LI Fang; YANG Bo; XI Dan-li; CHEN Ji-hua

    2007-01-01

    Mixed liquid of activated sludge (AS) were microfiltrated by dynamic membrane (DM) made of 6 000 mesh kaolin. The results illustrated that the permeate quality and flux with DM filtration were superior to that with direct filtration in treating AS. The experiments of membrane washing showed that DM could abate the internal fouling of membranes efficiently, and the permeate flux of renewed membrane reached 90% of that of new membranes. The denser the mixed liquid suspended solids (MLSS) were, the lower the permeate flux was. Increasing of both flow velocity over the membrane surface and trans-membrane pressure (TMP) could lead to some enhancement of permeate flux, while the former approach could be carried out more economically. The feasibility of application of the DM to membrane bioreactor (MBR) has been ascertained.

  1. Status of Safety and Environmental Activities in the US Fusion Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petti, D A; Reyes, S; Cadwallader, L C; Latkowski, J F

    2004-09-02

    This paper presents an overview of recent safety efforts in both magnetic and inertial fusion energy. Safety has been a part of fusion design and operations since the inception of fusion research. Safety research and safety design support have been provided for a variety of experiments in both the magnetic and inertial fusion programs. The main safety issues are reviewed, some recent safety highlights are discussed and the programmatic impacts that safety research has had are presented. Future directions in the safety and environmental area are proposed.

  2. Status of Safety and Environmental Activities in the US Fusion Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    David A. Petti; Susana Reyes; Lee C. Cadwallader; Jeffery F. Latkowski

    2004-09-01

    This paper presents an overview of recent safety efforts in both magnetic and inertial fusion energy. Safety has been a part of fusion design and operations since the inception of fusion research. Safety research and safety design support have been provided for a variety of experiments in both the magnetic and inertial fusion programs. The main safety issues are reviewed, some recent safety highlights are discussed and the programmatic impacts that safety research has had are presented. Future directions in the safety and environmental area are proposed.

  3. Constitutively active IRF7/IRF3 fusion protein completely protects swine against Foot-and-Mouth Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) remains one of the most devastating livestock diseases around the world. Several serotype specific vaccine formulations exist but require about 5-7 days to induce protective immunity. Our previous studies have shown that a constitutively active fusion protein of porcine ...

  4. Mutation of the dengue virus type 2 envelope protein heparan sulfate binding sites or the domain III lateral ridge blocks replication in Vero cells prior to membrane fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roehrig, John T., E-mail: jtr1@cdc.gov [Division of Vector-Borne Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, CO 80521 (United States); Butrapet, Siritorn; Liss, Nathan M. [Division of Vector-Borne Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, CO 80521 (United States); Bennett, Susan L. [Arthropod-borne and Infectious Diseases Laboratory, Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Pathology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523 (United States); Luy, Betty E.; Childers, Thomas; Boroughs, Karen L.; Stovall, Janae L.; Calvert, Amanda E. [Division of Vector-Borne Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, CO 80521 (United States); Blair, Carol D. [Arthropod-borne and Infectious Diseases Laboratory, Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Pathology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523 (United States); Huang, Claire Y.-H. [Division of Vector-Borne Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, CO 80521 (United States)

    2013-07-05

    Using an infectious cDNA clone we engineered seven mutations in the putative heparan sulfate- and receptor-binding motifs of the envelope protein of dengue virus serotype 2, strain 16681. Four mutant viruses, KK122/123EE, E202K, G304K, and KKK305/307/310EEE, were recovered following transfection of C6/36 cells. A fifth mutant, KK291/295EE, was recovered from C6/36 cells with a compensatory E295V mutation. All mutants grew in and mediated fusion of virus-infected C6/36 cells, but three of the mutants, KK122/123EE, E202K, G304K, did not grow in Vero cells without further modification. Two Vero cell lethal mutants, KK291/295EV and KKK307/307/310EEE, failed to replicate in DC-SIGN-transformed Raji cells and did not react with monoclonal antibodies known to block DENV attachment to Vero cells. Additionally, both mutants were unable to initiate negative-strand vRNA synthesis in Vero cells by 72 h post-infection, suggesting that the replication block occurred prior to virus-mediated membrane fusion. - Highlights: • Heparan sulfate- and receptor-binding motifs of DENV2 envelope protein were mutated. • Four mutant viruses were isolated—all could fuse C6/36 cells. • Two of these mutants were lethal in Vero cells without further modification. • Lethal mutations were KK291/295EV and KKK305/307/310EEE. • Cell attachment was implicated as the replication block for both mutants.

  5. Fusion of protegrin-1 and plectasin to MAP30 shows significant inhibition activity against dengue virus replication.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hussin A Rothan

    Full Text Available Dengue virus (DENV broadly disseminates in tropical and sub-tropical countries and there are no vaccine or anti-dengue drugs available. DENV outbreaks cause serious economic burden due to infection complications that requires special medical care and hospitalization. This study presents a new strategy for inexpensive production of anti-DENV peptide-fusion protein to prevent and/or treat DENV infection. Antiviral cationic peptides protegrin-1 (PG1 and plectasin (PLSN were fused with MAP30 protein to produce recombinant antiviral peptide-fusion protein (PG1-MAP30-PLSN as inclusion bodies in E. coli. High yield production of PG1-MAP30-PLSN protein was achieved by solubilization of inclusion bodies in alkaline buffer followed by the application of appropriate refolding techniques. Antiviral PG1-MAP30-PLSN protein considerably inhibited DENV protease (NS2B-NS3pro with half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50 0.5±0.1 μM. The real-time proliferation assay (RTCA and the end-point proliferation assay (MTT assay showed that the maximal-nontoxic dose of the peptide-fusion protein against Vero cells is approximately 0.67±0.2 μM. The cell-based assays showed considerable inhibition of the peptide-fusion protein against binding and proliferating stages of DENV2 into the target cells. The peptide-fusion protein protected DENV2-challeged mice with 100% of survival at the dose of 50 mg/kg. In conclusion, producing recombinant antiviral peptide-fusion protein by combining short antiviral peptide with a central protein owning similar activity could be useful to minimize the overall cost of short peptide production and take advantage of its synergistic antiviral activities.

  6. Differential contribution of cytoplasmic Ca2+ and Ca2+ influx to gamete fusion and egg activation in maize.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antoine, A F; Faure, J E; Dumas, C; Feijó, J A

    2001-12-01

    In multicellular organisms, gamete fusion triggers a set of events, collectively known as egg activation, that leads to the development of a new individual. Every species that has been studied shows at least one rise in cytoplasmic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]Cyt) after gamete fusion which is believed to be involved in activation. Yet the source and regulation of this Ca2+ signal and the way it is transduced inside the zygote are controversial. In higher plants, in vitro fertilization (IVF) has enabled the description of a rise in [Ca2+]Cyt (ref. 4) that is sufficient for activation, and of a Ca2+ influx that spreads as a wavefront from the fusion site The relationship between these two responses is unknown. Using a new combination of methods that simultaneously monitor the extracellular flux with a Ca2+-vibrating probe, and [Ca2+]Cyt by widefield imaging, we directly determined that the Ca2+ influx precedes the [Ca2+]Cyt elevation by 40-120 s. In addition, results from experiments using the Ca2+-channel inhibitor gadolinium (Gd3+) suggest that the Ca2+ influx may be necessary for sperm incorporation. We also present evidence for a putative sperm-dependent Gd3+-insensitive localized Ca2+ influx confined to the fusion point.

  7. Activation Mechanism and Cellular Localization of Membrane-Anchored Alginate Polymerase in Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moradali, M Fata; Ghods, Shirin; Rehm, Bernd H A

    2017-05-01

    The exopolysaccharide alginate, produced by the opportunistic human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa, confers a survival advantage to the bacterium by contributing to the formation of characteristic biofilms during infection. Membrane-anchored proteins Alg8 (catalytic subunit) and Alg44 (copolymerase) constitute the alginate polymerase that is being activated by the second messenger molecule bis-(3', 5')-cyclic dimeric GMP (c-di-GMP), but the mechanism of activation remains elusive. To shed light on the c-di-GMP-mediated activation of alginate polymerization in vivo, an in silico structural model of Alg8 fused to the c-di-GMP binding PilZ domain informed by the structure of cellulose synthase, BcsA, was developed. This structural model was probed by site-specific mutagenesis and different cellular levels of c-di-GMP. Results suggested that c-di-GMP-mediated activation of alginate polymerization involves amino acids residing at two loops, including H323 (loop A) and T457 and E460 (loop B), surrounding the catalytic site in the predicted model. The activities of the respective Alg8 variants suggested that c-di-GMP-mediated control of substrate access to the catalytic site of Alg8 is dissimilar to the known activation mechanism of BcsA. Alg8 variants responded differently to various c-di-GMP levels, while MucR imparted c-di-GMP for activation of alginate polymerase. Furthermore, we showed that Alg44 copolymerase constituted a stable dimer, with its periplasmic domains required for protein localization and alginate polymerization and modification. Superfolder green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusions of Alg8 and Alg44 showed a nonuniform, punctate, and patchy arrangement of both proteins surrounding the cell. Overall, this study provides insights into the c-di-GMP-mediated activation of alginate polymerization while assigning functional roles to Alg8 and Alg44, including their subcellular localization and distribution.IMPORTANCE The exopolysaccharide alginate is an

  8. Effect of membranes with various hydrophobic/hydrophilic properties on lipase immobilized activity and stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Guan-Jie; Kuo, Chia-Hung; Chen, Chih-I; Yu, Chung-Cheng; Shieh, Chwen-Jen; Liu, Yung-Chuan

    2012-02-01

    In this study, three membranes: regenerated cellulose (RC), glass fiber (GF) and polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF), were grafted with 1,4-diaminobutane (DA) and activated with glutaraldehyde (GA) for lipase covalent immobilization. The efficiencies of lipases immobilized on these membranes with different hydrophobic/hydrophilic properties were compared. The lipase immobilized on hydrophobic PVDF-DA-GA membrane exhibited more than an 11-fold increase in activity compared to its immobilization on a hydrophilic RC-DA-GA membrane. The relationship between surface hydrophobicity and immobilized efficiencies was investigated using hydrophobic/hydrophilic GF membranes which were prepared by grafting a different ratio of n-butylamine/1,4-diaminobutane (BA/DA). The immobilized lipase activity on the GF membrane increased with the increased BA/DA ratio. This means that lipase activity was exhibited more on the hydrophobic surface. Moreover, the modified PVDF-DA membrane was grafted with GA, epichlorohydrin (EPI) and cyanuric chloride (CC), respectively. The lipase immobilized on the PVDF-DA-EPI membrane displayed the highest specific activity compared to other membranes. This immobilized lipase exhibited more significant stability on pH, thermal, reuse, and storage than did the free enzyme. The results exhibited that the EPI modified PVDF is a promising support for lipase immobilization.

  9. Activation of lysosomal function in the course of autophagy via mTORC1 suppression and autophagosome-lysosome fusion

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jing Zhou; Shi-Hao Tan; Valérie Nicolas; Chantal Bauvy; Nai-Di Yang; Jianbin Zhang; Yuan Xue

    2013-01-01

    Lysosome is a key subcellular organelle in the execution of the autophagic process and at present little is known whether lysosomal function is controlled in the process of autophagy.In this study,we first found that suppression of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) activity by starvation or two mTOR catalytic inhibitors (PP242 and Torinl),but not by an allosteric inhibitor (rapamycin),leads to activation of lysosomal function.Second,we provided evidence that activation of lysosomal function is associated with the suppression of mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1),but not mTORC2,and the mTORC1 localization to lysosomes is not directly correlated to its regulatory role in lysosomal function.Third,we examined the involvement of transcription factor EB (TFEB) and demonstrated that TFEB activation following mTORC1 suppression is necessary but not sufficient for lysosomal activation.Finally,Atg5 or Atg7deletion or blockage of the autophagosome-lysosome fusion process effectively diminished lysosomal activation,suggesting that lysosomal activation occurring in the course of autophagy is dependent on antophagosome-lysosome fusion.Taken together,this study demonstrates that in the course of autophagy,lysosomal function is upregulated via a dual mechanism involving mTORC1 suppression and autophagosome-lysosome fusion.

  10. Activation of lysosomal function in the course of autophagy via mTORC1 suppression and autophagosome-lysosome fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jing; Tan, Shi-Hao; Nicolas, Valérie; Bauvy, Chantal; Yang, Nai-Di; Zhang, Jianbin; Xue, Yuan; Codogno, Patrice; Shen, Han-Ming

    2013-04-01

    Lysosome is a key subcellular organelle in the execution of the autophagic process and at present little is known whether lysosomal function is controlled in the process of autophagy. In this study, we first found that suppression of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) activity by starvation or two mTOR catalytic inhibitors (PP242 and Torin1), but not by an allosteric inhibitor (rapamycin), leads to activation of lysosomal function. Second, we provided evidence that activation of lysosomal function is associated with the suppression of mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1), but not mTORC2, and the mTORC1 localization to lysosomes is not directly correlated to its regulatory role in lysosomal function. Third, we examined the involvement of transcription factor EB (TFEB) and demonstrated that TFEB activation following mTORC1 suppression is necessary but not sufficient for lysosomal activation. Finally, Atg5 or Atg7 deletion or blockage of the autophagosome-lysosome fusion process effectively diminished lysosomal activation, suggesting that lysosomal activation occurring in the course of autophagy is dependent on autophagosome-lysosome fusion. Taken together, this study demonstrates that in the course of autophagy, lysosomal function is upregulated via a dual mechanism involving mTORC1 suppression and autophagosome-lysosome fusion.

  11. Activation of Notch in lgd mutant cells requires the fusion of late endosomes with the lysosome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Markus; Troost, Tobias; Grawe, Ferdi; Martinez-Arias, Alfonso; Klein, Thomas

    2013-01-15

    The tumour suppressor Lethal (2) giant discs (Lgd) is a regulator of endosomal trafficking of the Notch signalling receptor as well as other transmembrane proteins in Drosophila. The loss of its function results in an uncontrolled ligand-independent activation of the Notch signalling receptor. Here, we investigated the consequences of loss of lgd function and the requirements for the activation of Notch. We show that the activation of Notch in lgd cells is independent of Kuz and dependent on γ-secretase. We found that the lgd cells have a defect that delays degradation of transmembrane proteins, which are residents of the plasma membrane. Furthermore, our results show that the activation of Notch in lgd cells occurs in the lysosome. By contrast, the pathway is activated at an earlier phase in mutants of the gene that encodes the ESCRT-III component Shrub, which is an interaction partner of Lgd. We further show that activation of Notch appears to be a general consequence of loss of lgd function. In addition, electron microscopy of lgd cells revealed that they contain enlarged multi-vesicular bodies. The presented results further elucidate the mechanism of uncontrolled Notch activation upon derailed endocytosis.

  12. Activation analysis and materials choice in the laser fusion reactor KOYO

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perlado, J. M.; Mima, K.; Nakai, S.; Alonso, E.; Mun˜oz, E.; Sanz, J.

    1996-10-01

    The laser fusion conceptual reactor KOYO, developed by the ILE Osaka, is presented and analyzed from the activation perspective. The reactor is driven by a laser diode pumped solid state laser which dramatically increases the efficiency of the system, and uses liquid LiPb film protection flowing through ceramic SiC porous tubes in the blanket. Neutron fluxes have been computed using 2/3D models and compared with spherical approaches. Two blanket areas with different packing fractions are considered, and we show the availability of a large fraction of the SiC with impurities to be considered as shallow land burial (SLB). We propose a more complete solution for SLB through the use of porous woven graphite (C) fabric tubes. A graphite reflector is included with important effect in the activation of the chamber wall. Ferritic HT-9 is considered as the structural material for the chamber wall, allowing its SLB and different recycling options. Releases of 1 kg of target-emissions-facing SiC tubes and HT-9 materials have also been simulated with optimum performances.

  13. Performance studies of Cryocooler based cryosorption pumps with indigenous activated carbons for fusion applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasthurirengan, S.; Vivek, G. A.; Verma, Ravi; Behera, Upendra; Udgata, Swarup; Gangradey, Ranjana

    2017-02-01

    Cryosorption pumps are the only solution for pumping helium and hydrogen in fusion systems, due to their high pumping speeds and suitability in harsh environments. Their development requires the right Activated Carbons (ACs) and suitable adhesives to bind them to metallic panels with liquid helium (LHe) flow channels. However, their performance evaluation will require large quantities of LHe. Alternatively, these pumps can be built with small size panels adhered with ACs and cooled by a cryocooler. The paper describes the development of a cryopump using a commercial cryocooler (Sumitomo RDK415D), with 1.5W@4.2 K, integrated with small size AC panel mounted on 2nd stage, with the 1st stage acting as radiation shield. Under no load, the cryopump reaches the ultimate pressure of 2.1E-7 mbar. The pump is built using panels with different indigenously developed ACs such as granules, pellets, ACF-FK2 and activated carbon of knitted IPR cloth. We present the experimental results of pumping speeds for gases such as nitrogen, argon and helium using the procedures outlined by American Vacuum Society (AVS). These studies will enable to arrive at the right ACs and adhesives for the development of large scale cryosorption pumps with liquid helium flow.

  14. Antimicrobial peptides: natural templates for synthetic membrane-active compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giuliani, A; Pirri, G; Bozzi, A; Di Giulio, A; Aschi, M; Rinaldi, A C

    2008-08-01

    The innate immunity of multicellular organisms relies in large part on the action of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) to resist microbial invasion. Crafted by evolution into an extremely diversified array of sequences and folds, AMPs do share a common amphiphilic 3-D arrangement. This feature is directly linked with a common mechanism of action that predominantly (although not exclusively) develops upon interaction of peptides with cell membranes of target cells. This minireview reports on current understanding of the modes of interaction of AMPs with biological and model membranes, especially focusing on recent insights into the folding and oligomerization requirements of peptides to bind and insert into lipid membranes and exert their antibiotic effects. Given the potential of AMPs to be developed into a new class of anti-infective agents, emphasis is placed on how the information on peptide-membrane interactions could direct the design and selection of improved biomimetic synthetic peptides with antibiotic properties.

  15. Studies on virus-induced cell fusion. Progress report, August 1, 1977--June 30, 1978

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Person, S.

    1978-07-01

    We have previously postulated that wild-type Herpes Simplex Virus type I (HSV-1) infections are characterized by the presence of a fusion factor and a fusion inhibitor activity. The fusion inhibitor presumably is dominant so that a small fraction of cells fuse in a typical wild-type infection. Furthermore, the syn mutants isolated in our laboratory are thought to cause extensive cell fusion because the production of active fusion inhibitor in cell membranes is delayed. If mutations existed that altered both the fusion factor and fusion inhibitor activity then separate viruses containing these two mutations might be able to complement each other, each supplying the defective gene product missing in the other virus. This would produce a wild type and not a syncytial mutant response. Complementation tests between two viruses, tsB5 and syn 20, which are thought to contain defects in the production of active fusion factor and fusion inhibitor activity, respectively, were done. A wild-type response was observed indicating that the mutations affecting fusion were in two separate genes.

  16. Thylakoid membrane maturation and PSII activation are linked in greening Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barthel, Sandra; Bernát, Gábor; Seidel, Tobias; Rupprecht, Eva; Kahmann, Uwe; Schneider, Dirk

    2013-10-01

    Thylakoid membranes are typical and essential features of both chloroplasts and cyanobacteria. While they are crucial for phototrophic growth of cyanobacterial cells, biogenesis of thylakoid membranes is not well understood yet. Dark-grown Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells contain only rudimentary thylakoid membranes but still a relatively high amount of phycobilisomes, inactive photosystem II and active photosystem I centers. After shifting dark-grown Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells into the light, "greening" of Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells, i.e. thylakoid membrane formation and recovery of photosynthetic electron transport reactions, was monitored. Complete restoration of a typical thylakoid membrane system was observed within 24 hours after an initial lag phase of 6 to 8 hours. Furthermore, activation of photosystem II complexes and restoration of a functional photosynthetic electron transport chain appears to be linked to the biogenesis of organized thylakoid membrane pairs.

  17. Binding of SEC11 indicates its role in SNARE recycling after vesicle fusion and identifies two pathways for vesicular traffic to the plasma membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karnik, Rucha; Zhang, Ben; Waghmare, Sakharam; Aderhold, Christin; Grefen, Christopher; Blatt, Michael R

    2015-03-01

    SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) proteins drive vesicle fusion in all eukaryotes and contribute to homeostasis, pathogen defense, cell expansion, and growth in plants. Two homologous SNAREs, SYP121 (=SYR1/PEN1) and SYP122, dominate secretory traffic to the Arabidopsis thaliana plasma membrane. Although these proteins overlap functionally, differences between SYP121 and SYP122 have surfaced, suggesting that they mark two discrete pathways for vesicular traffic. The SNAREs share primary cognate partners, which has made separating their respective control mechanisms difficult. Here, we show that the regulatory protein SEC11 (=KEULE) binds selectively with SYP121 to affect secretory traffic mediated by this SNARE. SEC11 rescued traffic block by dominant-negative (inhibitory) fragments of both SNAREs, but only in plants expressing the native SYP121. Traffic and its rescue were sensitive to mutations affecting SEC11 interaction with the N terminus of SYP121. Furthermore, the domain of SEC11 that bound the SYP121 N terminus was itself able to block secretory traffic in the wild type and syp122 but not in syp121 mutant Arabidopsis. Thus, SEC11 binds and selectively regulates secretory traffic mediated by SYP121 and is important for recycling of the SNARE and its cognate partners.

  18. Structural and metal binding characterization of the C-terminal metallochaperone domain of membrane fusion protein SilB from Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bersch, Beate; Derfoufi, Kheiro-Mouna; De Angelis, Fabien; Auquier, Vanessa; Ekendé, Elisabeth Ngonlong; Mergeay, Max; Ruysschaert, Jean-Marie; Vandenbussche, Guy

    2011-03-29

    Detoxification of heavy metal ions in Proteobacteria is tightly controlled by various systems regulating their sequestration and transport. In Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34, a model organism for heavy metal resistance studies, the sil determinant is potentially involved in the efflux of silver and copper ions. Proteins SilA, SilB, and SilC form a resistance nodulation cell division (RND)-based transport system in which SilB is the periplasmic adaptor protein belonging to the membrane fusion protein (MFP) family. In addition to the four domains typical of known MFPs, SilB has a fifth additional C-terminal domain, called SilB(440-521), which is characterized here. Structure and backbone dynamics of SilB(440-521) have been investigated using nuclear magnetic resonance, and the residues of the metal site were identified from (15)N- and (13)C-edited HSQC spectra. The solution structure and additional metal binding experiments demonstrated that this C-terminal domain folds independently of the rest of the protein and has a conformation and a Ag(+) and Cu(+) binding specificity similar to those determined for CusF from Escherichia coli. The small protein CusF plays a role in metal trafficking in the periplasm. The similarity with CusF suggests a potential metallochaperone role for SilB(440-521) that is discussed in the context of simultaneous expression of different determinants involved in copper resistance in C. metallidurans CH34.

  19. Acid sphingomyelinase activity is regulated by membrane lipids and facilitates cholesterol transfer by NPC2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oninla, Vincent O; Breiden, Bernadette; Babalola, Jonathan O; Sandhoff, Konrad

    2014-12-01

    During endocytosis, membrane components move to intraluminal vesicles of the endolysosomal compartment for digestion. At the late endosomes, cholesterol is sorted out mainly by two sterol-binding proteins, Niemann-Pick protein type C (NPC)1 and NPC2. To study the NPC2-mediated intervesicular cholesterol transfer, we developed a liposomal assay system. (Abdul-Hammed, M., B. Breiden, M. A. Adebayo, J. O. Babalola, G. Schwarzmann, and K. Sandhoff. 2010. Role of endosomal membrane lipids and NPC2 in cholesterol transfer and membrane fusion. J. Lipid Res. 51: 1747-1760.) Anionic lipids stimulate cholesterol transfer between liposomes while SM inhibits it, even in the presence of anionic bis(monoacylglycero)phosphate (BMP). Preincubation of vesicles containing SM with acid sphingomyelinase (ASM) (SM phosphodiesterase, EC 3.1.4.12) results in hydrolysis of SM to ceramide (Cer), which enhances cholesterol transfer. Besides SM, ASM also cleaves liposomal phosphatidylcholine. Anionic phospholipids derived from the plasma membrane (phosphatidylglycerol and phosphatidic acid) stimulate SM and phosphatidylcholine hydrolysis by ASM more effectively than BMP, which is generated during endocytosis. ASM-mediated hydrolysis of liposomal SM was also stimulated by incorporation of diacylglycerol (DAG), Cer, and free fatty acids into the liposomal membranes. Conversely, phosphatidylcholine hydrolysis was inhibited by incorporation of cholesterol, Cer, DAG, monoacylglycerol, and fatty acids. Our data suggest that SM degradation by ASM is required for physiological secretion of cholesterol from the late endosomal compartment, and is a key regulator of endolysosomal lipid digestion.

  20. Solving Multidimensional 0-1 Knapsack Problem by P Systems with Input and Active Membranes

    OpenAIRE

    2004-01-01

    P systems are parallel molecular computing models based on pro- cessing multisets of objects in cell-like membrane structures. In this paper we give a membrane algorithm to multidimensional 0-1 knapsack problem in lin- ear time by recognizer P systems with input and with active membranes using 2-division. This algorithm can also be modi¯ed to solve general 0-1 integer programming problem.

  1. Results from the CDE phase activity on neutron dosimetry for the international fusion materials irradiation facility test cell

    CERN Document Server

    Esposito, B; Maruccia, G; Petrizzi, L; Bignon, G; Blandin, C; Chauffriat, S; Lebrun, A; Recroix, H; Trapp, J P; Kaschuck, Y

    2000-01-01

    The international fusion materials irradiation facility (IFMIF) project deals with the study of an accelerator-based, deuterium-lithium source, producing high energy neutrons at sufficient intensity and irradiation volume to test samples of candidate materials for fusion energy reactors. IFMIF would also provide calibration and validation of data from fission reactor and other accelerator based irradiation tests. This paper describes the activity on neutron/gamma dosimetry (necessary for the characterization of the specimens' irradiation) performed in the frame of the IFMIF conceptual design evaluation (CDE) neutronics tasks. During the previous phase (conceptual design activity (CDA)) the multifoil activation method was proposed for the measurement of the neutron fluence and spectrum and a set of suitable foils was defined. The cross section variances and covariances of this set of foils have now been used for tests on the sensitivity of the IFMIF neutron spectrum determination to cross section uncertainties...

  2. Actomyosin dynamics drive local membrane component organization in an in vitro active composite layer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köster, Darius Vasco; Husain, Kabir; Iljazi, Elda; Bhat, Abrar; Bieling, Peter; Mullins, R Dyche; Rao, Madan; Mayor, Satyajit

    2016-03-22

    The surface of a living cell provides a platform for receptor signaling, protein sorting, transport, and endocytosis, whose regulation requires the local control of membrane organization. Previous work has revealed a role for dynamic actomyosin in membrane protein and lipid organization, suggesting that the cell surface behaves as an active composite composed of a fluid bilayer and a thin film of active actomyosin. We reconstitute an analogous system in vitro that consists of a fluid lipid bilayer coupled via membrane-associated actin-binding proteins to dynamic actin filaments and myosin motors. Upon complete consumption of ATP, this system settles into distinct phases of actin organization, namely bundled filaments, linked apolar asters, and a lattice of polar asters. These depend on actin concentration, filament length, and actin/myosin ratio. During formation of the polar aster phase, advection of the self-organizing actomyosin network drives transient clustering of actin-associated membrane components. Regeneration of ATP supports a constitutively remodeling actomyosin state, which in turn drives active fluctuations of coupled membrane components, resembling those observed at the cell surface. In a multicomponent membrane bilayer, this remodeling actomyosin layer contributes to changes in the extent and dynamics of phase-segregating domains. These results show how local membrane composition can be driven by active processes arising from actomyosin, highlighting the fundamental basis of the active composite model of the cell surface, and indicate its relevance to the study of membrane organization.

  3. Generating bifunctional fusion enzymes composed of heat-active endoglucanase (Cel5A) and endoxylanase (XylT).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizk, Mazen; Elleuche, Skander; Antranikian, Garabed

    2015-01-01

    Bifunctional enzyme constructs were generated comprising two genes encoding heat-active endoglucanase (cel5A) and endoxylanase (xylT). The fused proteins Cel5A-XylT and XylT-Cel5A were active on both β-glucan and beechwood xylan. An improvement in endoglucanase and endoxylanase catalytic activities was observed. The specific activity of the fusion towards xylan was significantly raised when compared to XylT. The fusion constructs were active from 40 to 100 °C for endoglucanase and from 40 to 90 °C for endoxylanase, but the temperature optima were lowered from 90 to 80 °C for the endoglucanase and from 80 to 70 °C for the endoxylanase. XylT in the construct XylT-Cel5A was less stable at higher temperatures compared to Cel5A-XylT. Due to the enzymatic performance, these fusion enzymes are attractive candidates for applications in biorefineries based on plant waste.

  4. Full inactivation of human influenza virus by high hydrostatic pressure preserves virus structure and membrane fusion while conferring protection to mice against infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumard, Carlos H; Barroso, Shana P C; de Oliveira, Guilherme A P; Carvalho, Carlos A M; Gomes, Andre M O; Couceiro, José Nelson S S; Ferreira, Davis F; Nico, Dirlei; Oliveira, Andrea C; Silva, Jerson L; Santos, Patrícia S

    2013-01-01

    Whole inactivated vaccines (WIVs) possess greater immunogenicity than split or subunit vaccines, and recent studies have demonstrated that WIVs with preserved fusogenic activity are more protective than non-fusogenic WIVs. In this work, we describe the inactivation of human influenza virus X-31 by high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) and analyze the effects on the structure by spectroscopic measurements, light scattering, and electron microscopy. We also investigated the effects of HHP on the glycoprotein activity and fusogenic activity of the viral particles. The electron microscopy data showed pore formation on the viral envelope, but the general morphology was preserved, and small variations were seen in the particle structure. The activity of hemagglutinin (HA) during the process of binding and fusion was affected in a time-dependent manner, but neuraminidase (NA) activity was not affected. Infectious activity ceased after 3 hours of pressurization, and mice were protected from infection after being vaccinated. Our results revealed full viral inactivation with overall preservation of viral structure and maintenance of fusogenic activity, thereby conferring protection against infection. A strong response consisting of serum immunoglobulin IgG1, IgG2a, and serum and mucosal IgA was also detected after vaccination. Thus, our data strongly suggest that applying hydrostatic pressure may be an effective method for developing new vaccines against influenza A as well as other viruses.

  5. Full Inactivation of Human Influenza Virus by High Hydrostatic Pressure Preserves Virus Structure and Membrane Fusion While Conferring Protection to Mice against Infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumard, Carlos H.; Barroso, Shana P. C.; de Oliveira, Guilherme A. P.; Carvalho, Carlos A. M.; Gomes, Andre M. O.; Couceiro, José Nelson S. S.; Ferreira, Davis F.; Nico, Dirlei; Oliveira, Andrea C.; Silva, Jerson L.; Santos, Patrícia S.

    2013-01-01

    Whole inactivated vaccines (WIVs) possess greater immunogenicity than split or subunit vaccines, and recent studies have demonstrated that WIVs with preserved fusogenic activity are more protective than non-fusogenic WIVs. In this work, we describe the inactivation of human influenza virus X-31 by high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) and analyze the effects on the structure by spectroscopic measurements, light scattering, and electron microscopy. We also investigated the effects of HHP on the glycoprotein activity and fusogenic activity of the viral particles. The electron microscopy data showed pore formation on the viral envelope, but the general morphology was preserved, and small variations were seen in the particle structure. The activity of hemagglutinin (HA) during the process of binding and fusion was affected in a time-dependent manner, but neuraminidase (NA) activity was not affected. Infectious activity ceased after 3 hours of pressurization, and mice were protected from infection after being vaccinated. Our results revealed full viral inactivation with overall preservation of viral structure and maintenance of fusogenic activity, thereby conferring protection against infection. A strong response consisting of serum immunoglobulin IgG1, IgG2a, and serum and mucosal IgA was also detected after vaccination. Thus, our data strongly suggest that applying hydrostatic pressure may be an effective method for developing new vaccines against influenza A as well as other viruses. PMID:24282553

  6. Calculation of Radioactivity and Dose Rate of Activated Corrosion Products in Water-Cooled Fusion Reactor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jingyu Zhang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In water-cooled reactor, the dominant radioactive source term under normal operation is activated corrosion products (ACPs, which have an important impact on reactor inspection and maintenance. A three-node transport model of ACPs was introduced into the new version of ACPs source term code CATE in this paper, which makes CATE capable of theoretically simulating the variation and the distribution of ACPs in a water-cooled reactor and suitable for more operating conditions. For code testing, MIT PWR coolant chemistry loop was simulated, and the calculation results from CATE are close to the experimental results from MIT, which means CATE is available and credible on ACPs analysis of water-cooled reactor. Then ACPs in the blanket cooling loop of water-cooled fusion reactor ITER under construction were analyzed using CATE and the results showed that the major contributors are the short-life nuclides, especially Mn-56. At last a point kernel integration code ARShield was coupled with CATE, and the dose rate around ITER blanket cooling loop was calculated. Results showed that after shutting down the reactor only for 8 days, the dose rate decreased nearly one order of magnitude, which was caused by the rapid decay of the short-life ACPs.

  7. Flux Tensor Constrained Geodesic Active Contours with Sensor Fusion for Persistent Object Tracking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Filiz Bunyak

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper makes new contributions in motion detection, object segmentation and trajectory estimation to create a successful object tracking system. A new efficient motion detection algorithm referred to as the flux tensor is used to detect moving objects in infrared video without requiring background modeling or contour extraction. The flux tensor-based motion detector when applied to infrared video is more accurate than thresholding ”hot-spots”, and is insensitive to shadows as well as illumination changes in the visible channel. In real world monitoring tasks fusing scene information from multiple sensors and sources is a useful core mechanism to deal with complex scenes, lighting conditions and environmental variables. The object segmentation algorithm uses level set-based geodesic active contour evolution that incorporates the fusion of visible color and infrared edge informations in a novel manner. Touching or overlapping objects are further refined during the segmentation process using an appropriate shapebased model. Multiple object tracking using correspondence graphs is extended to handle groups of objects and occlusion events by Kalman filter-based cluster trajectory analysis and watershed segmentation. The proposed object tracking algorithm was successfully tested on several difficult outdoor multispectral videos from stationary sensors and is not confounded by shadows or illumination variations.

  8. Damage of actively cooled plasma facing components of magnetic confinement controlled fusion machines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chevet, G. [Association Euratom-CEA, DSM/DRFC, CEA Cadarache, Saint-Paul-Lez-Durance (France)], E-mail: gaelle.chevet@cea.fr; Schlosser, J. [Association Euratom-CEA, DSM/DRFC, CEA Cadarache, Saint-Paul-Lez-Durance (France); Martin, E.; Herb, V.; Camus, G. [Universite Bordeaux 1, UMR 5801 (CNRS-SAFRAN-CEA-UB1), Laboratoire des Composites Thermostructuraux, F-33600 Pessac (France)

    2009-03-31

    Plasma facing components (PFCs) of magnetic fusion machines have high manufactured residual stresses and have to withstand important stress ranges during operation. These actively cooled PFCs have a carbon fibre composite (CFC) armour and a copper alloy heat sink. Cracks mainly appear in the CFC near the composite/copper interface. In order to analyse damage mechanisms, it is important to well simulate the damage mechanisms both of the CFC and the CFC/Cu interface. This study focuses on the mechanical behaviour of the N11 material for which the scalar ONERA damage model was used. The damage parameters of this model were identified by similarity to a neighbour material, which was extensively analysed, according to the few characterization test results available for the N11. The finite elements calculations predict a high level of damage of the CFC at the interface zone explaining the encountered difficulties in the PFCs fabrication. These results suggest that the damage state of the CFC cells is correlated with a conductivity decrease to explain the temperature increase of the armour surface under fatigue heat load.

  9. IFMIF, International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility conceptual design activity cost report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rennich, M.J. [comp.

    1996-12-01

    This report documents the cost estimate for the International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility (IFMIF) at the completion of the Conceptual Design Activity (CDA). The estimate corresponds to the design documented in the Final IFMIF CDA Report. In order to effectively involve all the collaborating parties in the development of the estimate, a preparatory meeting was held at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in March 1996 to jointly establish guidelines to insure that the estimate was uniformly prepared while still permitting each country to use customary costing techniques. These guidelines are described in Section 4. A preliminary cost estimate was issued in July 1996 based on the results of the Second Design Integration Meeting, May 20--27, 1996 at JAERI, Tokai, Japan. This document served as the basis for the final costing and review efforts culminating in a final review during the Third IFMIF Design Integration Meeting, October 14--25, 1996, ENEA, Frascati, Italy. The present estimate is a baseline cost estimate which does not apply to a specific site. A revised cost estimate will be prepared following the assignment of both the site and all the facility responsibilities.

  10. TDP-43 loss of function increases TFEB activity and blocks autophagosome-lysosome fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Qin; Wang, Hongfeng; Hao, Zongbing; Fu, Cheng; Hu, Qingsong; Gao, Feng; Ren, Haigang; Chen, Dong; Han, Junhai; Ying, Zheng; Wang, Guanghui

    2016-01-18

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease that is characterized by selective loss of motor neurons in brain and spinal cord. TAR DNA-binding protein 43 (TDP-43) was identified as a major component of disease pathogenesis in ALS, frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD), and other neurodegenerative disease. Despite the fact that TDP-43 is a multi-functional protein involved in RNA processing and a large number of TDP-43 RNA targets have been discovered, the initial toxic effect and the pathogenic mechanism underlying TDP-43-linked neurodegeneration remain elusive. In this study, we found that loss of TDP-43 strongly induced a nuclear translocation of TFEB, the master regulator of lysosomal biogenesis and autophagy, through targeting the mTORC1 key component raptor. This regulation in turn enhanced global gene expressions in the autophagy-lysosome pathway (ALP) and increased autophagosomal and lysosomal biogenesis. However, loss of TDP-43 also impaired the fusion of autophagosomes with lysosomes through dynactin 1 downregulation, leading to accumulation of immature autophagic vesicles and overwhelmed ALP function. Importantly, inhibition of mTORC1 signaling by rapamycin treatment aggravated the neurodegenerative phenotype in a TDP-43-depleted Drosophila model, whereas activation of mTORC1 signaling by PA treatment ameliorated the neurodegenerative phenotype. Taken together, our data indicate that impaired mTORC1 signaling and influenced ALP may contribute to TDP-43-mediated neurodegeneration. © 2015 The Authors.

  11. Damage of actively cooled plasma facing components of magnetic confinement controlled fusion machines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chevet, G.; Schlosser, J.; Martin, E.; Herb, V.; Camus, G.

    2009-03-01

    Plasma facing components (PFCs) of magnetic fusion machines have high manufactured residual stresses and have to withstand important stress ranges during operation. These actively cooled PFCs have a carbon fibre composite (CFC) armour and a copper alloy heat sink. Cracks mainly appear in the CFC near the composite/copper interface. In order to analyse damage mechanisms, it is important to well simulate the damage mechanisms both of the CFC and the CFC/Cu interface. This study focuses on the mechanical behaviour of the N11 material for which the scalar ONERA damage model was used. The damage parameters of this model were identified by similarity to a neighbour material, which was extensively analysed, according to the few characterization test results available for the N11. The finite elements calculations predict a high level of damage of the CFC at the interface zone explaining the encountered difficulties in the PFCs fabrication. These results suggest that the damage state of the CFC cells is correlated with a conductivity decrease to explain the temperature increase of the armour surface under fatigue heat load.

  12. Synthetic aperture microwave imaging with active probing for fusion plasma diagnostics

    CERN Document Server

    Shevchenko, Vladimir F; Freethy, Simon J; Huang, Billy K

    2012-01-01

    A Synthetic Aperture Microwave Imaging (SAMI) system has been designed and built to obtain 2-D images at several frequencies from fusion plasmas. SAMI uses a phased array of linearly polarised antennas. The array configuration has been optimised to achieve maximum synthetic aperture beam efficiency. The signals received by antennas are down-converted to the intermediate frequency range and then recorded in a full vector form. Full vector signals allow beam focusing and image reconstruction in both real time and a post processing mode. SAMI can scan over 16 preprogrammed frequencies in the range of 10-35GHz with a switching time of 300ns. The system operates in 2 different modes simultaneously: both a passive imaging of plasma emission and also an active imaging of the back-scattered signal of the radiation launched by one of the antennas from the same array. This second mode is similar to so-called Doppler backscattering (DBS) reflectometry with 2-D resolution of the propagation velocity of turbulent structur...

  13. Development of new generation reduced activation ferritic-martensitic steels for advanced fusion reactors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, L.; Snead, L. L.; Katoh, Y.

    2016-09-01

    International development of reduced activation ferritic-martensitic (RAFM) steels has focused on 9 wt percentage Cr, which primarily contain M23C6 (M = Cr-rich) and small amounts of MX (M = Ta/V, X = C/N) precipitates, not adequate to maintain strength and creep resistance above ∼500 °C. To enable applications at higher temperatures for better thermal efficiency of fusion reactors, computational alloy thermodynamics coupled with strength modeling have been employed to explore a new generation RAFM steels. The new alloys are designed to significantly increase the amount of MX nanoprecipitates, which are manufacturable through standard and scalable industrial steelmaking methods. Preliminary experimental results of the developed new alloys demonstrated noticeably increased amount of MX, favoring significantly improved strength, creep resistance, and Charpy impact toughness as compared to current RAFM steels. The strength and creep resistance were comparable or approaching to the lower bound of, but impact toughness was noticeably superior to 9-20Cr oxide dispersion-strengthened ferritic alloys.

  14. Estimation of membrane hydration status for active proton exchange membrane fuel cell systems by impedance measurement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Török, Lajos; Sahlin, Simon Lennart; Kær, Søren Knudsen

    2016-01-01

    , the membrane of which PEMFCs are made of tends to dry out when not in use. This increases the time interval required to start the system up and could lead to the destruction of the fuel cell. In this article a start-up time measurement setup is presented, which is part of a larger project, the membrane......Fuel cells are getting growing interest in industrial areas like backup systems for telecom applications or power source for electric vehicles. Although these systems are characterized by long periods of inactivity, they must be able to start at any instant in the shortest time. However...... hydration status estimator for monitoring the humidity of a fuel cell stack during standby. The fuel cell has been placed in a climatic chamber, connected to hydrogen and the start-up time has been measured with different environmental conditions. Based on the previous results and the ones presented...

  15. The Mechanism of Henipavirus Fusion: Examining the Relationships between the Attachment and Fusion Glycoproteins

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Andrew C. Hickey; Christopher C. Broder

    2009-01-01

    The henipaviruses, represented by Nipah virus and Hendra virus, are emerging zoonotic viral pathogens responsible for repeated outbreaks associated with high morbidity and mortality in Australia, Southeast Asia, India and Bangladesh. These viruses enter host cells via a class I viral fusion mechanism mediated by their attachment and fusion envelope glycoproteins; efficient membrane fusion requires both these glycoproteins in conjunction with specific virus receptors present on susceptible host cells. The henipavirus attachment glycoprotein interacts with a cellular B class ephrin protein receptor triggering conformational alterations leading to the activation of the viral fusion (F) glycoprotein. The analysis of monoclonal antibody (mAb) reactivity with G has revealed measurable alterations in the antigenic structure of the glycoprotein following its binding interaction with receptor. These observations only appear to occur with full-length native G glycoprotein, which is a tetrameric oligomer, and not with soluble forms of G (sG), which are disulfide-linked dimers. Single amino acid mutations in a heptad repeat-like structure within the stalk domain of G can disrupt its association with F and subsequent membrane fusion promotion activity. Notably, these mutants of G also appear to confer a postreceptor bound conformation implicating the stalk domain as an important element in the G glycoprotein's structure and functional relationship with F. Together, these observations suggest fusion is dependent on a specific interaction between the F and G glycoproteins of the henipaviruses. Further, receptor binding induces measurable changes in the G glycoprotein that appear to be greatest in respect to the interactions between the pairs of dimers comprising its native tetrameric structure. These receptor-induced conformational changes may be associated with the G glycoprotein's promotion of the fusion activity of F.

  16. INTERACTION OF THE HIV-1 FUSION PEPTIDE WITH PHOSPHOLIPID-VESICLES - DIFFERENT STRUCTURAL REQUIREMENTS FOR FUSION AND LEAKAGE

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    NIEVA, JL; NIR, S; MUGA, A; GONI, FM; WILSCHUT, J

    1994-01-01

    This paper presents a study on the membrane fusion activity of a 23-residue synthetic peptide, representing the N-terminus of gp41 of the human immunodeficiency virus type I (HIV-1; LAV(1a) strain), in a model system involving large unilamellar vesicles (LUV) composed of the negatively charged 1-pal

  17. Comparison of membrane fouling during short-term filtration of aerobic granular sludge and activated sludge

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    Aerobic granular sludge was cultivated adopting internal-circulate sequencing batch airlift reactor. The contradistinctive experiment about short-term membrane fouling between aerobic granular sludge system and activated sludge system were investigated. The membrane foulants was also characterized by Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy technique. The results showed that the aerobic granular sludge had excellent denitrification ability; the removal efficiency of TN could reach 90%. The aerobic granular sludge could alleviate membrane fouling effectively. The steady membrane flux of aerobic granular sludge was twice as much as that of activated sludge system. In addition, it was found that the aerobic granular sludge could result in severe membrane pore-blocking, however, the activated sludge could cause severe cake fouling. The major components of the foulants were identified as comprising of proteins and polysaccharide materials.

  18. Fusion studies with low-intensity radioactive ion beams using an active-target time projection chamber

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kolata, J.J., E-mail: jkolata@nd.edu [Physics Department, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN 46556 (United States); Howard, A.M. [Physics Department, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN 46556 (United States); Mittig, W. [National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Department of Physics and Astronomy, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Ahn, T. [Physics Department, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN 46556 (United States); Bazin, D. [National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Department of Physics and Astronomy, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Becchetti, F.D. [Physics Department, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (United States); Beceiro-Novo, S.; Chajecki, Z. [National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Department of Physics and Astronomy, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Febbrarro, M. [Physics Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN 37831 (United States); Fritsch, A.; Lynch, W.G. [National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Department of Physics and Astronomy, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Roberts, A. [Physics Department, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN 46556 (United States); Shore, A. [National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Department of Physics and Astronomy, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (United States); Torres-Isea, R.O. [Physics Department, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (United States)

    2016-09-11

    The total fusion excitation function for {sup 10}Be+{sup 40}Ar has been measured over the center-of-momentum (c.m.) energy range from 12 to 24 MeV using a time-projection chamber (TPC). The main purpose of this experiment, which was carried out in a single run of duration 90 h using a ≈100 particle per second (pps) {sup 10}Be beam, was to demonstrate the capability of an active-target TPC to determine fusion excitation functions for extremely weak radioactive ion beams. Cross sections as low as 12 mb were measured with acceptable (50%) statistical accuracy. It also proved to be possible to separate events in which charged particles were emitted from the fusion residue from those in which only neutrons were evaporated. The method permits simultaneous measurement of incomplete fusion, break-up, scattering, and transfer reactions, and therefore fully exploits the opportunities presented by the very exotic beams that will be available from the new generation of radioactive beam facilities.

  19. On the use of sensor fusion to reduce the impact of rotational and additive noise in human activity recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banos, Oresti; Damas, Miguel; Pomares, Hector; Rojas, Ignacio

    2012-01-01

    The main objective of fusion mechanisms is to increase the individual reliability of the systems through the use of the collectivity knowledge. Moreover, fusion models are also intended to guarantee a certain level of robustness. This is particularly required for problems such as human activity recognition where runtime changes in the sensor setup seriously disturb the reliability of the initial deployed systems. For commonly used recognition systems based on inertial sensors, these changes are primarily characterized as sensor rotations, displacements or faults related to the batteries or calibration. In this work we show the robustness capabilities of a sensor-weighted fusion model when dealing with such disturbances under different circumstances. Using the proposed method, up to 60% outperformance is obtained when a minority of the sensors are artificially rotated or degraded, independent of the level of disturbance (noise) imposed. These robustness capabilities also apply for any number of sensors affected by a low to moderate noise level. The presented fusion mechanism compensates the poor performance that otherwise would be obtained when just a single sensor is considered.

  20. On the Use of Sensor Fusion to Reduce the Impact of Rotational and Additive Noise in Human Activity Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignacio Rojas

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The main objective of fusion mechanisms is to increase the individual reliability of the systems through the use of the collectivity knowledge. Moreover, fusion models are also intended to guarantee a certain level of robustness. This is particularly required for problems such as human activity recognition where runtime changes in the sensor setup seriously disturb the reliability of the initial deployed systems. For commonly used recognition systems based on inertial sensors, these changes are primarily characterized as sensor rotations, displacements or faults related to the batteries or calibration. In this work we show the robustness capabilities of a sensor-weighted fusion model when dealing with such disturbances under different circumstances. Using the proposed method, up to 60% outperformance is obtained when a minority of the sensors are artificially rotated or degraded, independent of the level of disturbance (noise imposed. These robustness capabilities also apply for any number of sensors affected by a low to moderate noise level. The presented fusion mechanism compensates the poor performance that otherwise would be obtained when just a single sensor is considered.

  1. Comparison of microbial communities of activated sludge and membrane biofilm in 10 full-scale membrane bioreactors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jo, Sung Jun; Kwon, Hyeokpil; Jeong, So-Yeon; Lee, Chung-Hak; Kim, Tae Gwan

    2016-09-15

    Operation of membrane bioreactors (MBRs) for wastewater treatment is hampered by the membrane biofouling resulting from microbial activities. However, the knowledge of the microbial ecology of both biofilm and activated sludge in MBRs has not been sufficient. In this study, we scrutinized microbial communities of biofilm and activated sludge from 10 full-scale MBR plants. Overall, Flavobacterium, Dechloromonas and Nitrospira were abundant in order of abundance in biofilm, whereas Dechloromonas, Flavobacterium and Haliscomenobacter in activated sludge. Community structure was analyzed in either biofilm or activated sludge. Among MBRs, as expected, not only diversity of microbial community but also its composition was different from one another (p  0.05). Effects of ten environmental factors on community change were investigated using Spearman correlation. MLSS, HRT, F/M ratio and SADm explained the variation of microbial composition in the biofilm, whereas only MLSS did in the activated sludge. Microbial networks were constructed with the 10 environmental factors. The network results revealed that there were different topological characteristics between the biofilm and activated sludge networks, in which each of the 4 factors had different associations with microbial nodes. These results indicated that the different microbial associations were responsible for the variation of community composition between the biofilm and activated sludge.

  2. Active endocannabinoids are secreted on extracellular membrane vesicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabrielli, Martina; Battista, Natalia; Riganti, Loredana; Prada, Ilaria; Antonucci, Flavia; Cantone, Laura; Matteoli, Michela; Maccarrone, Mauro; Verderio, Claudia

    2015-02-01

    Endocannabinoids primarily influence neuronal synaptic communication within the nervous system. To exert their function, endocannabinoids need to travel across the intercellular space. However, how hydrophobic endocannabinoids cross cell membranes and move extracellularly remains an unresolved problem. Here, we show that endocannabinoids are secreted through extracellular membrane vesicles produced by microglial cells. We demonstrate that microglial extracellular vesicles carry on their surface N-arachidonoylethanolamine (AEA), which is able to stimulate type-1 cannabinoid receptors (CB1), and inhibit presynaptic transmission, in target GABAergic neurons. This is the first demonstration of a functional role of extracellular vesicular transport of endocannabinoids.

  3. Quercetin modulates activities of Taiwan cobra phospholipase A2 via its effects on membrane structure and membrane-bound mode of phospholipase A2

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Yi-Ling Chiou; Shinne-Ren Lin; Wan-Ping Hu; Long-Sen Chang

    2012-06-01

    The goal of the present study is to elucidate the mechanism of quercetin on modulating Naja naja atra phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activities. Sphingomyelin inhibited PLA2 enzymatic activity and membrane-damaging activity against egg yolk phosphatidylcholine (EYPC), while cholesterol and quercetin abrogated the sphingomeyelin inhibitory effect. Quercetin incorporation led to a reduction in PLA2 enzymatic activity and membrane-damaging activity toward EYPC/sphingomyelin/cholesterol vesicles. Both cholesterol and quercetin increased detergent resistance and reduced membrane fluidity of EYPC/sphingomyelin vesicles. Quercetin reduced detergent insolubility but increased ordered lipid packing of EYPC/sphingomyelin/cholesterol vesicles. Acrylamide quenching studies and trinitrophenylation of Lys residues revealed that quercetin altered the membrane-bound mode of PLA2 differently upon absorption onto the membrane bilayers of different lipid compositions. However, 8-anilinonaphthalene sulphonate-binding assay revealed that quercetin marginally affected the interaction between active site of PLA2 with phospholipid vesicles. Collectively, our data indicate that membrane-inserted quercetin modulates PLA2 interfacial activity and membrane-damaging activity via its effects on membrane structure and membrane-bound mode of PLA2.

  4. Functional, photochemically active, and chemically asymmetric membranes by interfacial polymerization of derivatized multifunctional prepolymers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lonsdale, Harold K.; Wamser, Carl C.

    1988-01-01

    The preparation of a novel class of thin film membranes by interfacial polymerization is disclosed, said membanes incorporating as part of their polymeric structure the functionality of monomeric or oligomeric precursors. Specific embodiments include porphyrin and phthalocyanime derivatives that are photochemically or electrochemically active, as well as chemically asymmetric membranes.

  5. A Catalytically Active Membrane Reactor for Fast, Highly Exothermic, Heterogeneous Gas Reactions. A Pilot Plant Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veldsink, Jan W.; Versteeg, Geert F.; Swaaij, Wim P.M. van

    1995-01-01

    Membrane reactors have been frequently studied because of their ability to combine chemical activity and separation properties into one device. Due to their thermal stability and mechanical strength, ceramic membranes are preferred over polymeric ones, but small transmembrane fluxes obstruct a wides

  6. One-way membrane trafficking of SOS in receptor-triggered Ras activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christensen, Sune M; Tu, Hsiung-Lin; Jun, Jesse E; Alvarez, Steven; Triplet, Meredith G; Iwig, Jeffrey S; Yadav, Kamlesh K; Bar-Sagi, Dafna; Roose, Jeroen P; Groves, Jay T

    2016-09-01

    SOS is a key activator of the small GTPase Ras. In cells, SOS-Ras signaling is thought to be initiated predominantly by membrane recruitment of SOS via the adaptor Grb2 and balanced by rapidly reversible Grb2-SOS binding kinetics. However, SOS has multiple protein and lipid interactions that provide linkage to the membrane. In reconstituted-membrane experiments, these Grb2-independent interactions were sufficient to retain human SOS on the membrane for many minutes, during which a single SOS molecule could processively activate thousands of Ras molecules. These observations raised questions concerning how receptors maintain control of SOS in cells and how membrane-recruited SOS is ultimately released. We addressed these questions in quantitative assays of reconstituted SOS-deficient chicken B-cell signaling systems combined with single-molecule measurements in supported membranes. These studies revealed an essentially one-way trafficking process in which membrane-recruited SOS remains trapped on the membrane and continuously activates Ras until being actively removed via endocytosis.

  7. Effect of low dosages of powdered activated carbon on membrane bioreactor performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Remy, M.J.J.; Temmink, H.; Rulkens, W.H.

    2012-01-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that powdered activated carbon (PAC), when applied at very low dosages and long SRTs, reduces membrane fouling in membrane bioreactors (MBRs). This effect was related to the formation of stronger sludge flocs, which are less sensitive to shear. In this contribution

  8. Improved PVDF membrane performance by doping extracellular polymeric substances of activated sludge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guan, Yan-Fang; Huang, Bao-Cheng; Qian, Chen; Wang, Long-Fei; Yu, Han-Qing

    2017-04-15

    Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) membrane has been widely applied in water and wastewater treatment because of its high mechanical strength, thermal stability and chemical resistance. However, the hydrophobic nature of PVDF membrane makes it readily fouled, substantially reducing water flux and overall membrane rejection ability. In this work, an in-situ blending modifier, i.e., extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) from activated sludge, was used to enhance the anti-fouling ability of PVDF membrane. Results indicate that the pure water flux of the membrane and its anti-fouling performance were substantially improved by blending 8% EPS into the membrane. By introducing EPS, the membrane hydrophilicity was increased and the cross section morphology was changed when it interacted with polyvinl pyrrolidone, resulting in the formation of large cavities below the finger-like pores. In addition, the fraction of pores with a size of 100-500 nm increased, which was also beneficial to improving membrane performance. Surface thermodynamic calculations indicate the EPS-functionalized membrane had a higher cohesion free energy, implying its good pollutant rejection and anti-fouling ability. This work provides a simple, efficient and cost-effective method to improve membrane performance and also extends the applications of EPS.

  9. ANTIPROLIFERATIVE ACTIVITY OF HUMAN IFN-γ-EGF3 FUSION PROTEIN ARE RELATED TO ITS EGF RECEPTOR COMPETITION

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    1999-01-01

    The relationship between antiproliferative effect of human IFN-γ-EGF3 fusion protein and the influence of EGF receptor binding activity has been studied on A431 cell line. Antiproliferative activity of human IFN-γ-EGF3 was higher than that of its parent IFN-γ. In the 125 I-EGF receptor competition experiment, the inhibition of EGF receptor binding capacity on the target cells was observed in the treatments of human IFN-γ or IFN-γ-EGF3, but the later was more significant. Our data suggests that the antiproliferative effects by IFN-γ and its fusion protein are closely related to their EGF receptor competitions.

  10. Membrane lipids regulate ganglioside GM2 catabolism and GM2 activator protein activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anheuser, Susi; Breiden, Bernadette; Schwarzmann, Günter; Sandhoff, Konrad

    2015-09-01

    Ganglioside GM2 is the major lysosomal storage compound of Tay-Sachs disease. It also accumulates in Niemann-Pick disease types A and B with primary storage of SM and with cholesterol in type C. Reconstitution of GM2 catabolism with β-hexosaminidase A and GM2 activator protein (GM2AP) at uncharged liposomal surfaces carrying GM2 as substrate generated only a physiologically irrelevant catabolic rate, even at pH 4.2. However, incorporation of anionic phospholipids into the GM2 carrying liposomes stimulated GM2 hydrolysis more than 10-fold, while the incorporation of plasma membrane stabilizing lipids (SM and cholesterol) generated a strong inhibition of GM2 hydrolysis, even in the presence of anionic phospholipids. Mobilization of membrane lipids by GM2AP was also inhibited in the presence of cholesterol or SM, as revealed by surface plasmon resonance studies. These lipids also reduced the interliposomal transfer rate of 2-NBD-GM1 by GM2AP, as observed in assays using Förster resonance energy transfer. Our data raise major concerns about the usage of recombinant His-tagged GM2AP compared with untagged protein. The former binds more strongly to anionic GM2-carrying liposomal surfaces, increases GM2 hydrolysis, and accelerates intermembrane transfer of 2-NBD-GM1, but does not mobilize membrane lipids.

  11. Construction of a novel fusion protein harboring mouse inter- feron γ and epidermal growth factor receptor binding domain and enhancement of its antitumor activity

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    丁炎平; 谭维彦; 胡荣; 陈望秋; 侯云德

    1997-01-01

    A novel fusion protein harboring mouse interferon γ and epidermal growth factor receptor binding domain was constructed with the method of genetic and protein engineering. The fusion protein kept complete antiviral activity with the titer of 108 IU per liter of culture. The EGF-RBD of the fusion protein exhibited competitive binding activity against 125I-mEGF for mEGF receptors on A431 cells. The fusion protein was shown to be more potent in in-hibiting the growth of cultured mouse breast carcinoma cells than interferon γ. Experimental data on mouse B16 malig-nant melanoma model indicated that the tumor weight of fusion protein-treated group was statistically significantly smaller than that of interferon γ-treated group. The work here provides a necessarily reliable clue for the upcoming clinical employment of a novel class of targeting interferons.

  12. Chimaerin suppresses Rac1 activation at the apical membrane to maintain the cyst structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shunsuke Yagi

    Full Text Available Epithelial organs are made of a well-polarized monolayer of epithelial cells, and their morphology is maintained strictly for their proper functions. Previously, we showed that Rac1 activation is suppressed at the apical membrane in the mature organoid, and that such spatially biased Rac1 activity is required for the polarity maintenance. Here we identify Chimaerin, a GTPase activating protein for Rac1, as a suppressor of Rac1 activity at the apical membrane. Depletion of Chimaerin causes over-activation of Rac1 at the apical membrane in the presence of hepatocyte growth factor (HGF, followed by luminal cell accumulation. Importantly, Chimaerin depletion did not inhibit extension formation at the basal membrane. These observations suggest that Chimaerin functions as the apical-specific Rac1 GAP to maintain epithelial morphology.

  13. Activation of the Pleiotropic Drug Resistance Pathway Can Promote Mitochondrial DNA Retention by Fusion-Defective Mitochondria in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    OpenAIRE

    Dunn, Cory, D.; Mutlu, Nebibe; Garipler, Gorkem; Akdogan, Emel

    2014-01-01

    1 Activation of the pleiotropic drug resistance pathway can promote mitochondrial DNA retention by fusion-defective mitochondria in Saccharomyces cerevisiae Nebibe Mutlu1, Görkem Garipler, Emel Akdoğan and Cory D. Dunn Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics Koç University Sarıyer, İstanbul, 34450 Turkey 1 Present address: Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 48109, U.S.A. NCBI Sequence...

  14. The role of the N-terminal segment of CCR5 in HIV-1 Env-mediated membrane fusion and the mechanism of virus adaptation to CCR5 lacking this segment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kabat David

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env induces membrane fusion as a result of sequential binding to CD4 and chemokine receptors (CCR5 or CXCR4. The critical determinants of CCR5 coreceptor function are the N-terminal domain (Nt and the second extracellular loop. However, mutations in gp120 adapt HIV-1 to grow on cells expressing the N-terminally truncated CCR5(Δ18 (Platt et al., J. Virol. 2005, 79: 4357–68. Results We have functionally characterized the adapted Env (designated Env(NYP using a quantitative cell-cell fusion assay. The rate of fusion with target cells expressing wild-type CCR5 and the resistance to fusion inhibitors was virtually identical for wild-type Env and Env(NYP, implying that the coreceptor affinity had not increased as a result of adaptation. In contrast, Env(NYP-induced fusion with cells expressing CCR5(Δ18 occurred at a slower rate and was extremely sensitive to the CCR5 binding inhibitor, Sch-C. Resistance to Sch-C drastically increased after pre-incubation of Env(NYP- and CCR5(Δ18-expressing cells at a temperature that was not permissive to fusion. This indicates that ternary Env(NYP-CD4-CCR5(Δ18 complexes accumulate at sub-threshold temperature and that low-affinity interactions with the truncated coreceptor are sufficient for triggering conformational changes in the gp41 of Env(NYP but not in wild-type Env. We also demonstrated that the ability of CCR5(Δ18 to support fusion and infection mediated by wild-type Env can be partially reconstituted in the presence of a synthetic sulfated peptide corresponding to the CCR5 Nt. Pre-incubation of wild-type Env- and CCR5(Δ18-expressing cells with the sulfated peptide at sub-threshold temperature markedly increased the efficiency of fusion. Conclusion We propose that, upon binding the Nt region of CCR5, wild-type Env acquires the ability to productively engage the extracellular loop(s of CCR5 – an event that triggers gp41 refolding and membrane merger

  15. Atomic-resolution simulations predict a transition state for vesicle fusion defined by contact of a few lipid tails.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter M Kasson

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Membrane fusion is essential to both cellular vesicle trafficking and infection by enveloped viruses. While the fusion protein assemblies that catalyze fusion are readily identifiable, the specific activities of the proteins involved and nature of the membrane changes they induce remain unknown. Here, we use many atomic-resolution simulations of vesicle fusion to examine the molecular mechanisms for fusion in detail. We employ committor analysis for these million-atom vesicle fusion simulations to identify a transition state for fusion stalk formation. In our simulations, this transition state occurs when the bulk properties of each lipid bilayer remain in a lamellar state but a few hydrophobic tails bulge into the hydrophilic interface layer and make contact to nucleate a stalk. Additional simulations of influenza fusion peptides in lipid bilayers show that the peptides promote similar local protrusion of lipid tails. Comparing these two sets of simulations, we obtain a common set of structural changes between the transition state for stalk formation and the local environment of peptides known to catalyze fusion. Our results thus suggest that the specific molecular properties of individual lipids are highly important to vesicle fusion and yield an explicit structural model that could help explain the mechanism of catalysis by fusion proteins.

  16. THADA fusion is a mechanism of IGF2BP3 activation and IGF1R signaling in thyroid cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panebianco, Federica; Kelly, Lindsey M; Liu, Pengyuan; Zhong, Shan; Dacic, Sanja; Wang, Xiaosong; Singhi, Aatur D; Dhir, Rajiv; Chiosea, Simion I; Kuan, Shih-Fan; Bhargava, Rohit; Dabbs, David; Trivedi, Sumita; Gandhi, Manoj; Diaz, Rachel; Wald, Abigail I; Carty, Sally E; Ferris, Robert L; Lee, Adrian V; Nikiforova, Marina N; Nikiforov, Yuri E

    2017-02-28

    Thyroid cancer development is driven by known point mutations or gene fusions found in ∼90% of cases, whereas driver mutations in the remaining tumors are unknown. The insulin-like growth factor 2 mRNA-binding protein 3 (IGF2BP3) plays an important role in cancer, yet the mechanisms of its activation in cancer cells remain poorly understood. Using whole-transcriptome and whole-genome analyses, we identified a recurrent fusion between the thyroid adenoma-associated (THADA) gene on chromosome 2 and the LOC389473 gene on chromosome 7 located 12 kb upstream of the IGF2BP3 gene. We show that THADA fusion to LOC389473 and other regions in the vicinity does not result in the formation of a chimeric protein but instead leads to strong overexpression of the full-length IGF2BP3 mRNA and protein, increased IGF2 translation and IGF1 receptor (IGF1R) signaling via PI3K and MAPK cascades, and promotion of cell proliferation, invasion, and transformation. THADA fusions and IGF2BP3 overexpression are found in ∼5% of thyroid cancers that lack any other driver mutations. We also find that strong IGF2BP3 overexpression via gene fusion, amplification, or other mechanisms occurs in 5 to 15% of several other cancer types. Finally, we provide in vitro and in vivo evidence that growth of IGF2BP3-driven cells and tumors may be blocked by IGF1R inhibition, raising the possibility that IGF2BP3 overexpression in cancer cells may predict an anti-IGF1R benefit.

  17. Reversible conformational change in herpes simplex virus glycoprotein B with fusion-from-without activity is triggered by mildly acidic pH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicola Anthony V

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The pre-fusion form of the herpes simplex virus (HSV fusion protein gB undergoes pH-triggered conformational change in vitro and during viral entry (Dollery et al., J. Virol. 84:3759-3766, 2010. The antigenic structure of gB from the fusion-from-without (FFWO strain of HSV-1, ANG path, resembles wild type gB that has undergone pH-triggered changes. Together, changes in the antigenic and oligomeric conformation of gB correlate with fusion activity. We tested whether the pre-fusion form of FFWO gB undergoes altered conformational change in response to low pH. Results A pH of 5.5 - 6.0 altered the conformation of Domains I and V of FFWO gB, which together comprise the functional region containing the hydrophobic fusion loops. The ANG path gB oligomer was altered at a similar pH. All changes were reversible. In wild type HSV lacking the UL45 protein, which has been implicated in gB-mediated fusion, gB still underwent pH-triggered changes. ANG path entry was inactivated by pretreatment of virions with low pH. Conclusion The pre-fusion conformation of gB with enhanced fusion activity undergoes alteration in antigenic structure and oligomeric conformation in response to acidic pH. We propose that endosomal pH triggers conformational change in mutant gB with FFWO activity in a manner similar to wild type. Differences apart from this trigger may account for the increased fusion activity of FFWO gB.

  18. Rat mammary carcinogenesis induced by in situ expression of constitutive Raf kinase activity is prevented by tethering Raf to the plasma membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarlin, Daniel R; Gould, Michael N

    2003-06-01

    Mammary carcinogenesis induced through expression of activated Raf was investigated using a model in which retroviral vectors were infused into the central ducts of rat mammary glands. This model allows efficient expression of experimental proteins in a small fraction of endogenous mammary epithelial cells in situ. We previously reported that Raf is the dominant oncogenic signaling pathway from activated Ras in rat mammary glands. We show here that mammary gland carcinogenesis is rapidly induced by the expression of c-Raf-1 kinase that is activated by N-terminal truncation (Delta-Raf). Interestingly, targeting Raf to the plasma membrane via C-terminal fusion with Ras membrane localization signals (Raf-Caax) induces Raf kinase activity that transforms 3T3 cells more frequently than Delta-Raf, yet in situ expression of Raf-Caax does not induce mammary carcinomas. To investigate these contrasting results and begin elucidating the mechanisms of Raf-induced mammary carcinogenesis, we combined both activating mutations (N-terminal truncation and C-terminal membrane localization motifs) in one Raf construct (Delta-Raf-Caax). While Delta-Raf-Caax transforms 3T3 cells more efficiently than Delta-Raf or Raf-Caax, in situ expression of Delta-Raf-Caax does not induce carcinomas in vivo, demonstrating that lipid modification on the C-terminus of Delta-Raf negates its oncogenic potential in rat mammary gland.

  19. Production of cloned dogs by decreasing the interval between fusion and activation during somatic cell nuclear transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sue; Park, Sun Woo; Hossein, Mohammad Shamim; Jeong, Yeon Woo; Kim, Joung Joo; Lee, Eugine; Kim, Yeun Wook; Hyun, Sang Hwan; Shin, Taeyoung; Hwang, Woo Suk

    2009-05-01

    To improve the efficiency of somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) in dogs, we evaluated whether or not the interval between fusion and activation affects the success rate of SCNT. Oocytes retrieved from outbred dogs were reconstructed with adult somatic cells from a male or female Golden Retriever. In total, 151 and 225 reconstructed oocytes were transferred to 9 and 14 naturally synchronized surrogates for male and female donor cells, respectively. Chromosomal morphology was evaluated in 12 oocytes held for an interval of 2 hr between fusion and activation and 14 oocytes held for an interval of 4 hr. Three hundred seventy-six and 288 embryos were transferred to 23 and 16 surrogates for the 2 and 4 hr interval groups, respectively. Both the male (two pregnant surrogates gave birth to three puppies) and female (one pregnant surrogate gave birth to one puppy) donor cells gave birth to live puppies (P > 0.05). In the 2 hr group, significantly more reconstructed oocytes showed condensed, metaphase-like chromosomes compared to the 4 hr group (P dogs carried pregnancies to term and four puppies were born. These results demonstrate that decreasing the interval between fusion and activation increases the success rate of clone production and pregnancy. These results may increase the overall efficiency of SCNT in the canine family.

  20. Presence of membranous vesicles in cat seminal plasma: ultrastructural characteristics, protein profile and enzymatic activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polisca, A; Troisi, A; Minelli, A; Bellezza, I; Fontbonne, A; Zelli, R

    2015-02-01

    This study sought to verify the presence of membranous vesicles in cat seminal plasma by means of transmission electron microscopy and to identify protein profile and some of the enzymatic activities associated with these particles. The transmission electron microscopy observations showed the existence of different sized vesicular membranous structures of more or less spherical shape. These vesicles were surrounded by single-, double- or multiple-layered laminar membranes. The vesicle diameters ranged from 16.3 to 387.4 nm, with a mean of 116.5 ± 70.7 nm. Enzyme activity determinations showed the presence of dipeptilpeptidase IV, aminopeptidase, alkaline and acid phosphatase. To our knowledge, this is the first report that identifies and characterizes the membranous vesicles in cat seminal plasma. However, further studies are necessary to identify the exact site of production of these membranous vesicles in the cat male genital tract and to determine their specific roles in the reproductive events of this species.

  1. Fusion of Cytothrophoblast with Syncytiotrophoblast in the Human Placenta: Factors Involved in Syncytialization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gauster M

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Human placental villi are covered by a characteristic epithelial-like layer. It consists of mononucleated cytotrophoblasts and an overlyingsyncytiotrophoblast layer both in contact to the trophoblastic basement membrane. The syncytiotrophoblast mostly lacks DNA replication andseems to transcribe only barely mRNA. Therefore, the syncytiotrophoblast depends on cell compounds delivered by fusing cytotrophoblasts. Delivery of fresh cytoplasmic contents into the syncytiotrophoblast is achieved by continuous fusion with cytotrophoblasts throughout gesta-tion. Fusion between cytotrophoblasts and the syncytiotrophoblast is driven by multiple factors, including environmental growth factors andcytokines, which turn on a specific cascade of fusogenic proteins in cytotrophoblasts destined for fusion. The cascade includes protein kinasesand transcription factors, as well as induced expression of fusion-promoting proteins associated with the cell membrane. Additionally, specificproteases are activated, which cleave and remodel structural proteins to prepare the cell for fusion. However, not only fusogenic proteins, butalso plasma membrane architecture and physicochemical factors such as calcium and oxygen affect intertrophoblastic fusion. Coordinatedaction of all factors involved is crucial for proper cytotrophoblast – syncytiotrophoblast fusion. Deregulation of a single factor might cause aninadequate fusion rate and could lead to pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia or even spontaneous abortion.

  2. Machine learning-enabled discovery and design of membrane-active peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ernest Y; Wong, Gerard C L; Ferguson, Andrew L

    2017-07-08

    Antimicrobial peptides are a class of membrane-active peptides that form a critical component of innate host immunity and possess a diversity of sequence and structure. Machine learning approaches have been profitably employed to efficiently screen sequence space and guide experiment towards promising candidates with high putative activity. In this mini-review, we provide an introduction to antimicrobial peptides and summarize recent advances in machine learning-enabled antimicrobial peptide discovery and design with a focus on a recent work Lee et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2016;113(48):13588-13593. This study reports the development of a support vector machine classifier to aid in the design of membrane active peptides. We use this model to discover membrane activity as a multiplexed function in diverse peptide families and provide interpretable understanding of the physicochemical properties and mechanisms governing membrane activity. Experimental validation of the classifier reveals it to have learned membrane activity as a unifying signature of antimicrobial peptides with diverse modes of action. Some of the discriminating rules by which it performs classification are in line with existing "human learned" understanding, but it also unveils new previously unknown determinants and multidimensional couplings governing membrane activity. Integrating machine learning with targeted experimentation can guide both antimicrobial peptide discovery and design and new understanding of the properties and mechanisms underpinning their modes of action. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Modification of trout sperm membranes associated with activation and cryopreservation. Implications for fertilizing potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abstract We investigated the effects of two trout sperm activation solutions on sperm physiology and membrane organization prior to and following cryopreservation using flow cytometry and investigated their impact on in vitro fertility. Cryopreservation caused greater phospholipid disorder (high pl...

  4. Active Peptide-Conjugated Chitosan Matrices as an Artificial Basement Membrane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kentaro Hozumi

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The basement membrane, a thin extracellular matrix, plays a critical role in tissue development and repair. Laminins are the major component of basement membrane and have diverse biological activities. We have identified various cell-adhesive peptides from laminins and their specific cell surface receptors. Polysaccharides, including chitosan, have been used as scaffolds, which regulate cellular functions for tissue engineering. We have developed laminin-derived active peptide-chitosan matrices as functional scaffolds. The biological activity of the peptides was enhanced when the peptides were conjugated to a chitosan matrix, suggesting that the peptide-chitosan matrix approach has an advantage for an active biomaterial. Further, the laminin peptide-chitosan matrices have the potential to mimic the basement membrane and are useful for tissue engineering as an artificial basement membrane.

  5. Herpes Simplex Virus 1 Enters Human Keratinocytes by a Nectin-1-Dependent, Rapid Plasma Membrane Fusion Pathway That Functions at Low Temperature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayers, Charlotte L; Elliott, Gillian

    2016-11-15

    Herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) infects humans through stratified epithelia that are composed primarily of keratinocytes. The route of HSV-1 entry into keratinocytes has been the subject of limited investigation, but it is proposed to involve pH-dependent endocytosis, requiring the gD-binding receptor nectin-1. Here, we have utilized the nTERT human keratinocyte cell line as a new model for dissecting the mechanism of HSV-1 entry into the host. Although immortalized, these cells nonetheless retain normal growth and differentiation properties of primary cells. Using short interfering RNA (siRNA) depletion studies, we confirm that, despite nTERT cells expressing high levels of the alternative gD receptor HVEM, HSV-1 requires nectin-1, not HVEM, to enter these cells. Strikingly, virus entry into nTERT cells occurred with unusual rapidity, such that maximum penetration was achieved within 5 min. Moreover, HSV-1 was able to enter keratinocytes but not other cell types at temperatures as low as 7°C, conditions where endocytosis was shown to be completely inhibited. Transmission electron microscopy of early entry events at both 37°C and 7°C identified numerous examples of naked virus capsids located immediately beneath the plasma membrane, with no evidence of virions in cytoplasmic vesicles. Taken together, these results imply that HSV-1 uses the nectin-1 receptor to enter human keratinocyte cells via a previously uncharacterized rapid plasma membrane fusion pathway that functions at low temperature. These studies have important implications for current understanding of the relationship between HSV-1 and its relevant in vivo target cell. The gold standard of antiviral treatment for any human virus infection is the prevention of virus entry into the host cell. In the case of HSV-1, primary infection in the human begins in the epidermis of the skin or the oral mucosa, where the virus infects keratinocytes, and it is therefore important to understand the molecular events

  6. Comparison of the Modeling Approach between Membrane Bioreactor and Conventional Activated Sludge Processes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jiang, Tao; Sin, Gürkan; Spanjers, Henri

    2009-01-01

    Activated sludge models (ASM) have been developed and largely applied in conventional activated sludge (CAS) systems. The applicability of ASM to model membrane bioreactors (MBR) and the differences in modeling approaches have not been studied in detail. A laboratory-scale MBR was modeled using ASM...... to the inhibition effect of soluble microbial products (SMP) at elevated concentration. Second, a greater biomass affinity to oxygen and ammonium was found, which was probably related to smaller MBR sludge flocs. Finally, the membrane throughput during membrane backwashing/relaxation can be normalized...

  7. A membrane cytoskeleton from Dictyostelium discoideum. I. Identification and partial characterization of an actin-binding activity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Luna, E.J.; Fowler, V.M.; Swanson, J.; Branton, D.; Taylor, D.L.

    1981-02-01

    Dictyostelium discoideum plasma membranes isolated by each of three procedures bind F-actin. The interactions between these membranes and actin are examined by a novel application of falling ball viscometry. Treating the membranes as multivalent actin-binding particles analogous to divalent actin-gelatin factors, large increases in viscosity (actin-cross-linking) were observed when membranes depleted of actin and myosin are incubated with rabbit skeletal muscle F-actin. Pre-extraction of peripheral membrane proteins with chaotropes or the inclusion of Triton X-100 during the assay does not appreciably diminish this actin cross-linking activity. Lipid vesicles, heat-denatured membranes, proteolyzed membranes, or membranes containing endogenous actin show minimal actin cross-linking activity. Heat-denatured, but not proteolyzed, membranes regain activity when assayed in the presence of Triton X-100. Thus, integral membrane proteins appear to be responsible for some or all of the actin cross-linking activity of D. discoideum membranes. In the absence of MgATP, Triton X-100 extraction of isolated D. discoideum membranes results in a Triton-insoluble residue composed of actin, myosin, and associated membrane proteins. The inclusion of MgATP before and during Triton extraction greatly diminishes the amount of protein in the Triton-insoluble residue without appreciably altering its composition. Our results suggest the existence of a protein complex stabilized by actin and/or myosin (membrane cytoskeleton) associated with the D. discoideum plasma membrane.

  8. Stretch-activated nonselective cation, Cl- and K+ channels in apical membrane of epithelial cells of Reissner's membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeh, T H; Tsai, M C; Lee, S Y; Hsu, M M; Tran Ba Huy, P

    1997-07-01

    Ion channels on the apical membrane of epithelial cells (the surface facing the endolymph) of acutely isolated Reissner's membrane from guinea-pig cochlea were investigated by using patch-clamp technique in cell-attached and inside-out configurations. Three types of ion channel were identified: namely, a stretch-activated nonselective cation, a chloride and a potassium channel. When the pipette was filled with high-K+ endolymph-like solution, the most significant channel activity was nonselective cation channels (85/110, 77% patches). The current versus voltage relationship was linear with a unitary conductance of 22.1 +/- 0.4 pS and reversal potential (Vr) of 2.3 +/- 0.8 mV (n = 18). The channel exhibited a lower conductance (14.0 +/- 0.6 pS, n = 8) to Ca2+. The open probability was low (NPo approximately 0.1) in cell-attached configuration under +60 mV pipette potential and increased when the membrane was stretched with negative pressure. The channel was blocked by 10 microM extracellular Gd3+. The two other types of channels were a small voltage-sensitive Cl- channel (6.0 +/- 0.3 pS; 91/99, 92% patches) and a K+ channel (approximately 30 pS; 29/191, 15% patches). These channels might play roles in the regulation of cell volume, in balancing the hydrostatic pressure across Reissner's membrane and in maintaining the electrochemical composition of endolymph.

  9. Different host cell proteases activate the SARS-coronavirus spike-protein for cell-cell and virus-cell fusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, Graham; Bertram, Stephanie; Glowacka, Ilona; Steffen, Imke; Chaipan, Chawaree; Agudelo, Juliet; Lu, Kai; Rennekamp, Andrew J.; Hofmann, Heike; Bates, Paul; Pöhlmann, Stefan

    2011-01-01

    Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) poses a considerable threat to human health. Activation of the viral spike (S)-protein by host cell proteases is essential for viral infectivity. However, the cleavage sites in SARS-S and the protease(s) activating SARS-S are incompletely defined. We found that R667 was dispensable for SARS-S-driven virus-cell fusion and for SARS-S-activation by trypsin and cathepsin L in a virus-virus fusion assay. Mutation T760R, which optimizes the minimal furin consensus motif 758-RXXR-762, and furin overexpression augmented SARS-S-activity, but did not result in detectable SARS-S cleavage. Finally, SARS-S-driven cell-cell fusion was independent of cathepsin L, a protease essential for virus-cell fusion. Instead, a so far unknown leupeptin-sensitive host cell protease activated cellular SARS-S for fusion with target cells expressing high levels of ACE2. Thus, different host cell proteases activate SARS-S for virus-cell and cell-cell fusion and SARS-S cleavage at R667 and 758-RXXR-762 can be dispensable for SARS-S activation. PMID:21435673

  10. The EWSR1/NR4A3 fusion protein of extraskeletal myxoid chondrosarcoma activates the PPARG nuclear receptor gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filion, C; Motoi, T; Olshen, A B; Laé, M; Emnett, R J; Gutmann, D H; Perry, A; Ladanyi, M; Labelle, Y

    2009-01-01

    The NR4A3 nuclear receptor is implicated in the development of extraskeletal myxoid chondrosarcoma (EMC), primitive sarcoma unrelated to conventional chondrosarcomas, through a specific fusion with EWSR1 resulting in an aberrant fusion protein that is thought to disrupt the transcriptional regulation of specific target genes. We performed an expression microarray analysis of EMC tumours expressing the EWSR1/NR4A3 fusion protein, comparing their expression profiles to those of other sarcoma types. We thereby identified a set of genes significantly overexpressed in EMC relative to other sarcomas, including PPARG and NDRG2. Western blot or immunohistochemical analyses confirm that PPARG and NDRG2 are expressed in tumours positive for EWSR1/NR4A3. Bioinformatic analysis identified a DNA response element for EWSR1/NR4A3 in the PPARG promoter, and band-shift experiments and transient transfections indicate that EWSR1/NR4A3 can activate transcription through this element. Western blots further show that an isoform of the native NR4A3 receptor lacking the C-terminal domain is very highly expressed in tumours positive for EWSR1/NR4A3, and co-transfections of this isoform along with EWSR1/NR4A3 indicate that it may negatively regulate the activity of the fusion protein on the PPARG promoter. These results suggest that the overall expression of PPARG in EMC may be regulated in part by the balance between EWSR1/NR4A3 and NR4A3, and that PPARG may play a crucial role in the development of these tumours. The specific up-regulation of PPARG by EWSR1/NR4A3 may also have potential therapeutic implications.

  11. Assessment of the Fusion Tags on Increasing Soluble Production of the Active TEV Protease Variant and Other Target Proteins in E. coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Xuelian; Sun, Jiaqi; Wang, Weiyu; Jiang, Li; Cheng, Beijiu; Fan, Jun

    2016-12-17

    In this study, five fusion tags affecting soluble production and cleavage activity of the tobacco etch virus (TEV) protease (TEVp) variant in Escherichia coli strains BL21 (DE3) and Rosetta™ (DE3) are investigated. Combination of the augmenting rare transfer RNAs (tRNAs) and the fused expressivity tag (N-terminal seven amino acid residues of E. coli translation initiation factor II) promotes the soluble TEVp partner expressed at relatively high level. Attachment of the maltose-binding protein (MBP) tag increases soluble expression of the protease released from the fusion protein in E. coli cells, but the incorporated TEVp recognition sequence slightly decreases expressivity of the fusion construct. Except for the green fluorescent protein, the attached expressivity tag shows less efficiency than the MBP tag in enhancing expression levels of the selected five target proteins in the Rosetta™ (DE3) cells under different induction conditions. Our results identified that high-level production of the functional target protein as the fusion partner in E. coli is combined with the intrinsic property of fusion tag, fusion protein stability, inherent folding of target protein, rare tRNA abundance, and the incorporated linker. Purified TEVp fusion constructs with the N-terminal expressivity tag, as well as the MBP partner, are the ideal alternatives for removing fusion tag.

  12. Line active molecules promote inhomogeneous structures in membranes: theory, simulations and experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmieri, Benoit; Yamamoto, Tetsuya; Brewster, Robert C; Safran, Samuel A

    2014-06-01

    We review recent theoretical efforts that predict how line-active molecules can promote lateral heterogeneities (or domains) in model membranes. This fundamental understanding may be relevant to membrane composition in living cells, where it is thought that small domains, called lipid rafts, are necessary for the cells to be functional. The theoretical work reviewed here ranges in scale from coarse grained continuum models to nearly atomistic models. The effect of line active molecules on domain sizes and shapes in the phase separated regime or on fluctuation length scales and lifetimes in the single phase, mixed regime, of the membrane is discussed. Recent experimental studies on model membranes that include line active molecules are also presented together with some comparisons with the theoretical predictions.

  13. Dialyzer membranes: effect of surface area and chemical modification of cellulose on complement and platelet activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahiout, A; Meinhold, H; Kessel, M; Schulze, H; Baurmeister, U

    1987-04-01

    Using an ex vivo model, the effects of membrane composition and surface area on both the complement system (as reflected by plasma C3a levels) and platelets [as indicated by plasma concentrations of thromboxane B2 (TXB2) and platelet factor 4 (PF4)] were studied. In this model, polyacrylonitrile (PAN) was associated with less complement activation than cuprammonium cellulose (CC). A new "modified cellulose" (MC) membrane, in which a small number of the free hydroxyl groups on cellulose are substituted with a tertiary amino compound, was also associated with a low degree of complement activation, similar to that with PAN. However, the extent of hydroxyl group substitution in four MC membrane subtypes did not correlate with the reduction in complement activation. In studies using CC, the amount of generated C3a correlated with the membrane surface area, although the relationship was curvilinear. Plasma concentrations at the "dialyzer" outlet of TXB2 and PF4 were similar with CC, PAN, and MC. In studies with the MC subtypes, increasing the extent of hydroxyl group substitution paradoxically increased, albeit slightly, the amount of TXB2 generation. In studies with CC, a linear relationship between membrane surface area and TXB2 generation was found. The results suggest a dissociation between platelet and complement effects among different dialyzer membranes, and underline the importance of membrane surface area.

  14. Effect of activated carbon in PSF-PEI-Ag symmetric membrane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Said Khairul Anwar Mohamad

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Polysulfone (Psf composite membrane consist of activated carbon, polyethyleneimine and silver nitrate was prepared by phase inversion. The activated carbon (AC act as adsorbent to adsorb heavy metal present in synthetic waste water while polysulfone membrane act as support. Phase inversion was carried out on different composition of activated carbon from 0 to 0.9% while other component are remain constant. The surface morphology of composite membrane was characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM while heavy metal absorption was quantified by atomic absorption spectrometer (AAS. The SEM image show symmetric membrane matrix with sponge structure. The composite membrane with 0.9wt% AC has the highest water flux as well as removal of heavy metal (chromium, lead, silver and cadmium compare to composite membrane with 0.3wt% AC and 0.5wt% AC. The percentage of heavy metal reduction by composite membrane 0.9wt% AC was 35% cadmium, 19% chromium, 16% silver and 2% lead. The result indicated that the introduction of 0.9wt% AC indeed plays an important role towards enhancing the adsorption of heavy metal in water.

  15. Current Activities Assessing Butt Fusion Joint Integrity in High Density Polyethylene Piping

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crawford, Susan L.; Cinson, Anthony D.; Doctor, Steven R.; Denslow, Kayte M.

    2012-09-01

    The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) in Richland, Washington, conducted initial studies to evaluate the effectiveness of nondestructive examinations (NDE) coupled with mechanical testing for assessing butt fusion joint integrity in high density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe. The work provided insightful information to the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) on the effectiveness of volumetric inspection techniques for detecting lack of fusion (LOF) conditions in the fusion joints. HDPE has been installed on a limited basis in American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Class 3, buried piping systems at several operating U.S. nuclear power plants and has been proposed for use in new construction. A comparison was made between the results from ultrasonic and microwave nondestructive examinations and the results from mechanical destructive evaluations, specifically the high-speed tensile test and the side-bend test, for determining joint integrity. The data comparison revealed that none of the NDE techniques detected all of the lack-of-fusion conditions that were revealed by the destructive tests. Follow-on work has recently been initiated at PNNL to accurately characterize the NDE responses from machined flaws of varying size and location in PE 4710 materials as well as the LOF condition. This effort is directed at quantifying the ability of volumetric NDE techniques to detect flaws in relation to the critical flaw size associated with joint integrity. A status of these latest investigations is presented.

  16. Role of LRAT on the retinoid isomerase activity and membrane association of Rpe65.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Minghao; Yuan, Quan; Li, Songhua; Travis, Gabriel H

    2007-07-20

    Absorption of a photon by a vertebrate opsin pigment induces 11-cis to all-trans isomerization of its retinaldehyde chromophore. Restoration of light sensitivity to the bleached opsin requires chemical re-isomerization of the chromophore via an enzyme pathway called the visual cycle. The retinoid isomerase in this pathway is Rpe65, a membrane-associated protein in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) with no predicted membrane-spanning segments. It has been suggested that Rpe65 is S-palmitoylated by lecithin:retinol acyl transferase (LRAT) on Cys(231), Cys(329), and Cys(330), and that this palmitoylation is required for isomerase activity and the association of Rpe65 with membranes. Here we show that the affinity of Rpe65 for membranes is similar in wild-type and lrat(-/-) mice. The isomerase activity of Rpe65 is also similar in both strains when all-trans-retinyl palmitate is used as substrate. With all-trans-retinol substrate, isomerase activity is present in wild-type but undetectable in RPE homogenates from lrat(-/-) mice. Substitution of Cys(231), Cys(329), and Cys(330) with Ser or Ala did not affect the affinity of Rpe65 for membranes. Further, these Cys residues are not palmitoylated in Rpe65 by mass spectrometric analysis. Global inhibition of protein palmitoylation by 2-bromopalmitate did not affect the solubility or isomerase activity of Rpe65. Finally, we show that soluble and membrane-associated Rpe65 possesses similar isomerase specific activities. These results indicate that LRAT is not required for isomerase activity beyond synthesis of retinyl-ester substrate, and that the association of Rpe65 with membranes is neither dependent upon LRAT nor the result of S-palmitoylation. The affinity of Rpe65 for membranes is probably an intrinsic feature of this protein.

  17. From Data Acquisition to Data Fusion: A Comprehensive Review and a Roadmap for the Identification of Activities of Daily Living Using Mobile Devices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pires, Ivan Miguel; Garcia, Nuno M; Pombo, Nuno; Flórez-Revuelta, Francisco

    2016-02-02

    This paper focuses on the research on the state of the art for sensor fusion techniques, applied to the sensors embedded in mobile devices, as a means to help identify the mobile device user's daily activities. Sensor data fusion techniques are used to consolidate the data collected from several sensors, increasing the reliability of the algorithms for the identification of the different activities. However, mobile devices have several constraints, e.g., low memory, low battery life and low processing power, and some data fusion techniques are not suited to this scenario. The main purpose of this paper is to present an overview of the state of the art to identify examples of sensor data fusion techniques that can be applied to the sensors available in mobile devices aiming to identify activities of daily living (ADLs).

  18. From Data Acquisition to Data Fusion: A Comprehensive Review and a Roadmap for the Identification of Activities of Daily Living Using Mobile Devices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Miguel Pires

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper focuses on the research on the state of the art for sensor fusion techniques, applied to the sensors embedded in mobile devices, as a means to help identify the mobile device user’s daily activities. Sensor data fusion techniques are used to consolidate the data collected from several sensors, increasing the reliability of the algorithms for the identification of the different activities. However, mobile devices have several constraints, e.g., low memory, low battery life and low processing power, and some data fusion techniques are not suited to this scenario. The main purpose of this paper is to present an overview of the state of the art to identify examples of sensor data fusion techniques that can be applied to the sensors available in mobile devices aiming to identify activities of daily living (ADLs.

  19. From Data Acquisition to Data Fusion: A Comprehensive Review and a Roadmap for the Identification of Activities of Daily Living Using Mobile Devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pires, Ivan Miguel; Garcia, Nuno M.; Pombo, Nuno; Flórez-Revuelta, Francisco

    2016-01-01

    This paper focuses on the research on the state of the art for sensor fusion techniques, applied to the sensors embedded in mobile devices, as a means to help identify the mobile device user’s daily activities. Sensor data fusion techniques are used to consolidate the data collected from several sensors, increasing the reliability of the algorithms for the identification of the different activities. However, mobile devices have several constraints, e.g., low memory, low battery life and low processing power, and some data fusion techniques are not suited to this scenario. The main purpose of this paper is to present an overview of the state of the art to identify examples of sensor data fusion techniques that can be applied to the sensors available in mobile devices aiming to identify activities of daily living (ADLs). PMID:26848664

  20. Does Spinal Fusion and Scoliosis Correction Improve Activity and Participation for Children With GMFCS level 4 and 5 Cerebral Palsy?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sewell, Mathew David; Wallace, Charlie; Malage