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Sample records for altered membrane structure

  1. Revealing alteration of membrane structures during ischema using impedance spectroscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mihaela Gheorghiu

    2002-11-01

    Full Text Available Alterations of membrane structure and function are essential characteristics of cells undergoing ischemia. Noninvasive monitoring of tissue alterations during ischemia and the estimation of the reversibility domain (corresponding to organ capability to fully recover its functions after shifting back to normal blood perfusion are important for biomedical applications allowing better time management during surgical interventions, especially in organ transplantation. Due to it’s capability to reveal inhomogeneities, as well as it’s noninvasive character, impedance spectroscopy was used for continuous monitoring of the progression of excised tissue samples during ischemia. We have developed a fast, noninvasive, automated method for quantitative analysis of impedance spectra of tissue samples, capable of revealing, through characteristic parameters (dispersion amplitudes, time constants and distribution parameters membrane based microscopic processes like the closure ofgap-junctions (a characteristic of the early alterations of ischemic tissues in the reversibility phase. Microscopic and equivalent circuit modeling was used to probe the effect of closure of cell connections and of changes in electrical properties of cell constituents on impedance spectra. We have developed a normalizing procedure emphasizing the pattern of ischemic alterations and enabling the comparison of different data sets.

  2. Dolichol alters brain membrane functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    It has been well demonstrated that there is a direct correlation between increase in dolichol level in brain and aging. An abnormally high level of dolichol was found in brain tissue of patients with pathological aging disorders. The aim of this study is to examine the physiological significance of dolichol affecting membrane transport activity and phospholipid acyl group turnover. Dolichol added to synaptic plasma membranes resulted in a biphasic effect on (Na+, K+)-ATPase, i.e., an enhancement of activity at low concentrations (5 μg/125 mg protein) and an inhibition of activity at high concentrations (40-100 μg). To probe the membrane acyl group turnover, the incorporation of [14C]-arachidonate into plasma membrane phospholipids was examined in the presence and absence of dolichol. Dolichol elicited an increase in the incorporation of label into phospholipids. However, the effects varied depending on whether BSA is present. In the absence of BSA, the increase in labeling of phosphatidylinositols is higher than that of phosphatidylcholines. These results suggest that dolichols, when inserted into membranes, may alter membrane functions

  3. Dolichol alters brain membrane functions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sun, G.Y.; Sun, A.Y.; Schroeder, F.; Wood, G.; Strong, R.

    1986-03-05

    It has been well demonstrated that there is a direct correlation between increase in dolichol level in brain and aging. An abnormally high level of dolichol was found in brain tissue of patients with pathological aging disorders. The aim of this study is to examine the physiological significance of dolichol affecting membrane transport activity and phospholipid acyl group turnover. Dolichol added to synaptic plasma membranes resulted in a biphasic effect on (Na/sup +/, K/sup +/)-ATPase, i.e., an enhancement of activity at low concentrations (5 ..mu..g/125 mg protein) and an inhibition of activity at high concentrations (40-100 ..mu..g). To probe the membrane acyl group turnover, the incorporation of (/sup 14/C)-arachidonate into plasma membrane phospholipids was examined in the presence and absence of dolichol. Dolichol elicited an increase in the incorporation of label into phospholipids. However, the effects varied depending on whether BSA is present. In the absence of BSA, the increase in labeling of phosphatidylinositols is higher than that of phosphatidylcholines. These results suggest that dolichols, when inserted into membranes, may alter membrane functions.

  4. Membrane structure and radiation and hyperthermic damage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The general structure of the biological membrane and its involvement in cell damage from radiation and hyperthermic insults are discussed using bacterial cells as an example. Bacterial cells are useful models for these types of studies because they possess a simple membrane system whose composition can be readily altered. Also, various strains exist having different sensitivities to radiation and heat. For example, the response of Escherichia coli cells to ionizing radiation is found to be related to the degree of association between its DNA and membrane. The cell membrane, particularly the lipid component, is an important target in hyperthermic cell killing. The composition and organization of the membrane lipids can influence a cell's response to heat. Heat-induced changes in membrane lipids lead to altered distribution of E. coli proteins, particularly their translocation to the outer membrane. These and other aspects are discussed in this review. (author)

  5. Cardiolipin effects on membrane structure and dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unsay, Joseph D; Cosentino, Katia; Subburaj, Yamunadevi; García-Sáez, Ana J

    2013-12-23

    Cardiolipin (CL) is a lipid with unique properties solely found in membranes generating electrochemical potential. It contains four acyl chains and tends to form nonlamellar structures, which are believed to play a key role in membrane structure and function. Indeed, CL alterations have been linked to disorders such as Barth syndrome and Parkinson's disease. However, the molecular effects of CL on membrane organization remain poorly understood. Here, we investigated the structure and physical properties of CL-containing membranes using confocal microscopy, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, and atomic force microscopy. We found that the fluidity of the lipid bilayer increased and its mechanical stability decreased with CL concentration, indicating that CL decreases the packing of the membrane. Although the presence of up to 20% CL gave rise to flat, stable bilayers, the inclusion of 5% CL promoted the formation of flowerlike domains that grew with time. Surprisingly, we often observed two membrane-piercing events in atomic force spectroscopy experiments with CL-containing membranes. Similar behavior was observed with a lipid mixture mimicking the mitochondrial outer membrane composition. This suggests that CL promotes the formation of membrane areas with apposed double bilayers or nonlamellar structures, similar to those proposed for mitochondrial contact sites. All together, we show that CL induces membrane alterations that support the role of CL in facilitating bilayer structure remodeling, deformation, and permeabilization. PMID:23962277

  6. Structural genomics of membrane proteins

    OpenAIRE

    Walian, Peter; Cross, Timothy A.; Jap, Bing K.

    2004-01-01

    Improvements in the fields of membrane-protein molecular biology and biochemistry, technical advances in structural data collection and processing, and the availability of numerous sequenced genomes have paved the way for membrane-protein structural genomics efforts. There has been significant recent progress, but various issues essential for high-throughput membrane-protein structure determination remain to be resolved.

  7. Maximally asymmetric transbilayer distribution of anionic lipids alters the structure and interaction with lipids of an amyloidogenic protein dimer bound to the membrane surface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Sara Y; Chou, George; Buie, Creighton; Vaughn, Mark W; Compton, Campbell; Cheng, Kwan H

    2016-03-01

    We used molecular dynamics simulations to explore the effects of asymmetric transbilayer distribution of anionic phosphatidylserine (PS) lipids on the structure of a protein on the membrane surface and subsequent protein-lipid interactions. Our simulation systems consisted of an amyloidogenic, beta-sheet rich dimeric protein (D42) absorbed to the phosphatidylcholine (PC) leaflet, or protein-contact PC leaflet, of two membrane systems: a single-component PC bilayer and double PC/PS bilayers. The latter comprised of a stable but asymmetric transbilayer distribution of PS in the presence of counterions, with a 1-component PC leaflet coupled to a 1-component PS leaflet in each bilayer. The maximally asymmetric PC/PS bilayer had a non-zero transmembrane potential (TMP) difference and higher lipid order packing, whereas the symmetric PC bilayer had a zero TMP difference and lower lipid order packing under physiologically relevant conditions. Analysis of the adsorbed protein structures revealed weaker protein binding, more folding in the N-terminal domain, more aggregation of the N- and C-terminal domains and larger tilt angle of D42 on the PC leaflet surface of the PC/PS bilayer versus the PC bilayer. Also, analysis of protein-induced membrane structural disruption revealed more localized bilayer thinning in the PC/PS versus PC bilayer. Although the electric field profile in the non-protein-contact PS leaflet of the PC/PS bilayer differed significantly from that in the non-protein-contact PC leaflet of the PC bilayer, no significant difference in the electric field profile in the protein-contact PC leaflet of either bilayer was evident. We speculate that lipid packing has a larger effect on the surface adsorbed protein structure than the electric field for a maximally asymmetric PC/PS bilayer. Our results support the mechanism that the higher lipid packing in a lipid leaflet promotes stronger protein-protein but weaker protein-lipid interactions for a dimeric protein on

  8. Self-Deployable Membrane Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokolowski, Witold M.; Willis, Paul B.; Tan, Seng C.

    2010-01-01

    Currently existing approaches for deployment of large, ultra-lightweight gossamer structures in space rely typically upon electromechanical mechanisms and mechanically expandable or inflatable booms for deployment and to maintain them in a fully deployed, operational configuration. These support structures, with the associated deployment mechanisms, launch restraints, inflation systems, and controls, can comprise more than 90 percent of the total mass budget. In addition, they significantly increase the stowage volume, cost, and complexity. A CHEM (cold hibernated elastic memory) membrane structure without any deployable mechanism and support booms/structure is deployed by using shape memory and elastic recovery. The use of CHEM micro-foams reinforced with carbon nanotubes is considered for thin-membrane structure applications. In this advanced structural concept, the CHEM membrane structure is warmed up to allow packaging and stowing prior to launch, and then cooled to induce hibernation of the internal restoring forces. In space, the membrane remembers its original shape and size when warmed up. After the internal restoring forces deploy the structure, it is then cooled to achieve rigidization. For this type of structure, the solar radiation could be utilized as the heat energy used for deployment and space ambient temperature for rigidization. The overall simplicity of the CHEM self-deployable membrane is one of its greatest assets. In present approaches to space-deployable structures, the stow age and deployment are difficult and challenging, and introduce a significant risk, heavy mass, and high cost. Simple procedures provided by CHEM membrane greatly simplify the overall end-to-end process for designing, fabricating, deploying, and rigidizing large structures. The CHEM membrane avoids the complexities associated with other methods for deploying and rigidizing structures by eliminating deployable booms, deployment mechanisms, and inflation and control systems

  9. Robust mixed conducting membrane structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2010-01-01

    The present invention provides a membrane structure, comprising in said order a first electronically conducting layer, an ionically conducting layer, and a second electronically conducting layer, characterized in that the first and second electronically conducting layers are internally short circ...

  10. Hematoporphyrin derivative induced photodamage to brain tumor cells: Alterations in subcellular membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sreenivasan, Rajesh; Joshi, Preeti G.; Joshi, Nanda B.

    1997-01-01

    Photoinduced structural and functional changes were studied in the subcellular membranes isolated from HpD treated cells. Changes in the limiting anisotropy of lipid specific probes 1,6,Diphenyl-1,3,5,hexatriene (DPH) and 1-(4-Trimethyl ammonium 1,6 diphenyl)-1,3,5,hexatriene toulene sulphonate (TMA-DPH) incorporated into the membrane were used to assess the structural alterations while changes in the activity of the marker enzymes were used to assess the functional alterations. Our results suggest that damage to the endoplasmic reticulum may play an important role in the photosensitization of brain tumor cells.

  11. Fluidity of pea root plasma membranes under altered gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klymchuk, D. O.; Baranenko, V. V.; Vorobyova, T. V.; Dubovoy, V. D.

    This investigation aims to determine whether clinorotation 2 rev min of pea Pisum sativum L seedlings induces the alterations in the physical-chemical properties of cellular membranes including the plasma membrane fluidity The last is an important regulator of functional activity of membrane enzymes The plasma membranes were isolated by aqueous two-phase partitioning from roots of 6-day old pea seedlings The membrane fluidity was examined by fluorescence spectroscopy using pyrene probe The plasma membrane vesicles with known protein concentration were added to the incubation buffer to a final concentration of 50 mu g of protein per ml A small amount by 1 mu l of pyrene solution in 2-propanol was added to the incubation mixture to a final probe concentration 5 mu M at constant mixing Fluorescence spectra were measured using a Perkin-Elmer LS-50 spectrofluorometer Perkin-Elmer England Pyrene was excited at 337 nm and fluorescence intensity of monomers I M and excimers I E were measured at 393 and 470 nm respectively The I E I M ratios were 0 081 pm 0 003 and 0 072 pm 0 004 in preparations obtained from clinorotated and the control seedlings respectively This fact indicates that rotation on the clinostat increases the membrane fluidity Compared with controls clinorotated seedlings have also showed a reduced growth and a higher level of total unsaturated fatty acids determined by gas chromatography The factors that influence on the fluidity of membrane lipids in bilayer appear to be the

  12. Membrane fluctuations alter the fluidity of clathrin protein lattices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spakowitz, Andrew; Cordella, Nicholas; Mehraeen, Shafigh

    2012-02-01

    Clathrin is a protein that plays a major role in the creation of membrane-bound transport vesicles in cells. The pinwheel subunits of clathrin assemble into closed, nanoscale assemblies with various shapes and sizes. We develop a model for clathrin, facilitating the study of membrane, surface, and bulk assembly. The clathrin are modeled as pinwheels that form leg-leg associations and resist bending and stretching deformations. Invoking theories of dislocation-mediated melting in two dimensions, we discuss the phase behavior for clathrin. We demonstrate that the generation of defects resembles creation of two dislocations, and we use orientational- and translational-order correlation functions to predict the crystalline-hexatic and hexatic-liquid phase transitions. Accounting for membrane fluctuations, we address the phase behavior of clathrin on a membrane surface. Membrane fluctuations act to soften the elastic coupling between defects in the clathrin lattice, altering the conditions for the crystalline-hexatic phase transition. This effect offers a mechanism for altering the fluidity of protein or polymer films. Furthermore, these results illustrate the pivotal role that molecular elasticity plays in the physical behavior of self-assembling and self-healing materials.

  13. The adrenal specific toxicant mitotane directly interacts with lipid membranes and alters membrane properties depending on lipid composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheidt, Holger A; Haralampiev, Ivan; Theisgen, Stephan; Schirbel, Andreas; Sbiera, Silviu; Huster, Daniel; Kroiss, Matthias; Müller, Peter

    2016-06-15

    Mitotane (o,p'.-DDD) is an orphan drug approved for the treatment of adrenocortical carcinoma. The mechanisms, which are responsible for this activity of the drug, are not completely understood. It can be hypothesized that an impact of mitotane is mediated by the interaction with cellular membranes. However, an interaction of mitotane with (lipid) membranes has not yet been investigated in detail. Here, we characterized the interaction of mitotane and its main metabolite o,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroacetic acid (o,p'-DDA) with lipid membranes by applying a variety of biophysical approaches of nuclear magnetic resonance, electron spin resonance, and fluorescence spectroscopy. We found that mitotane and o,p'-DDA bind to lipid membranes by inserting into the lipid-water interface of the bilayer. Mitotane but not o,p'-DDA directly causes a disturbance of bilayer structure leading to an increased permeability of the membrane for polar molecules. Mitotane induced alterations of the membrane integrity required the presence of phosphatidylethanolamine and/or cholesterol. Collectively, our data for the first time characterize the impact of mitotane on the lipid membrane structure and dynamics, which may contribute to a better understanding of specific mitotane effects and side effects. PMID:27002491

  14. Membrane Protein Structure Determination: Back to the Membrane

    OpenAIRE

    Yao, Yong; Ding, Yi; Tian, Ye; Opella, Stanley J.; Marassi, Francesca M.

    2013-01-01

    NMR spectroscopy enables the structures of membrane proteins to be determined in the native-like environment of the phospholipid bilayer membrane. This chapter outlines the methods for membrane protein structural studies using solid-state NMR spectroscopy with samples of membrane proteins incorporated in proteoliposomes or planar lipid bilayers. The methods for protein expression and purification, sample preparation, and NMR experiments are described and illustrated with examples from OmpX an...

  15. Corrugated Membrane Fuel Cell Structures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grot, Stephen [President, Ion Power Inc.

    2013-09-30

    One of the most challenging aspects of traditional PEM fuel cell stacks is the difficulty achieving the platinum catalyst utilization target of 0.2 gPt/kWe set forth by the DOE. Good catalyst utilization can be achieved with state-of-the-art catalyst coated membranes (CCM) when low catalyst loadings (<0.3 mg/cm2) are used at a low current. However, when low platinum loadings are used, the peak power density is lower than conventional loadings, requiring a larger total active area and a larger bipolar plate. This results in a lower overall stack power density not meeting the DOE target. By corrugating the fuel cell membrane electrode structure, Ion Power?s goal is to realize both the Pt utilization targets as well as the power density targets of the DOE. This will be achieved by demonstrating a fuel cell single cell (50 cm2) with a twofold increase in the membrane active area over the geometric area of the cell by corrugating the MEA structure. The corrugating structure must be able to demonstrate the target properties of < 10 mOhm-cm2 electrical resistance at > 20 psi compressive strength over the active area, in combination with offering at least 80% of power density that can be achieved by using the same MEA in a flat plate structure. Corrugated membrane fuel cell structures also have the potential to meet DOE power density targets by essentially packaging more membrane area into the same fuel cell volume as compared to conventional stack constructions.

  16. Properties of Plasma Membrane from Pea Root Seedlings under Altered Gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klymchuk, D.; Baranenko, V.; Vorobyova, T. V.; Kurylenko, I.; Chyzhykova, O.; Dubovoy, V.

    In this study, the properties of pea (Pisum sativum L.) plasma membrane were examined to determine how the membrane structure and functions are regulated in response to clinorotation (2 rev/min) conditions. Membrane preparations enriched by plasma membrane vesicles were obtained by aqueous two-phase partitioning from 6-day seedling roots. The specific characteristics of H^+-ATPase, lípid composition and peroxidation intensity as well as fluidity of lipid bilayer were analysed. ATP hydrolytic activity was inhibited by ortovanadate and was insensitive to aside and nitrate in sealed plasma membrane vesicles isolated from both clinorotated and control seedlings. Plasma membrane vesicles from clinorotated seedlings in comparison to controls were characterised by increase in the total lipid/protein ratio, ATP hydrolytic activity and intensifying of lipid peroxidation. Sitosterol and campesterol were the predominant free sterol species. Clinorotated seedlings contained a slightly higher level of unsaturated fatty acid than controls. Plasma membrane vesicles were labelled with pyrene and fluorescence originating from monomeric (I_M) molecules and excimeric (I_E) aggregates were measured. The calculated I_E/I_M values were higher in clinorotated seedlings compared with controls reflecting the reduction in membrane microviscosity. The involvement of the changes in plasma membrane lipid content and composition, fluidity and H^+-ATPase activity in response of pea seedlings to altered gravity is discussed.

  17. Membrane protein structure determination: back to the membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Yong; Ding, Yi; Tian, Ye; Opella, Stanley J; Marassi, Francesca M

    2013-01-01

    NMR spectroscopy enables the structures of membrane proteins to be determined in the native-like environment of the phospholipid bilayer membrane. This chapter outlines the methods for membrane protein structural studies using solid-state NMR spectroscopy with samples of membrane proteins incorporated in proteoliposomes or planar lipid bilayers. The methods for protein expression and purification, sample preparation, and NMR experiments are described and illustrated with examples from OmpX and Ail, two bacterial outer membrane proteins that function in bacterial virulence. PMID:23975776

  18. Cholesterol depletion disorganizes oocyte membrane rafts altering mouse fertilization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorgelina Buschiazzo

    Full Text Available Drastic membrane reorganization occurs when mammalian sperm binds to and fuses with the oocyte membrane. Two oocyte protein families are essential for fertilization, tetraspanins and glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored proteins. The firsts are associated to tetraspanin-enriched microdomains and the seconds to lipid rafts. Here we report membrane raft involvement in mouse fertilization assessed by cholesterol modulation using methyl-β-cyclodextrin. Cholesterol removal induced: (1 a decrease of the fertilization rate and index; and (2 a delay in the extrusion of the second polar body. Cholesterol repletion recovered the fertilization ability of cholesterol-depleted oocytes, indicating reversibility of these effects. In vivo time-lapse analyses using fluorescent cholesterol permitted to identify the time-point at which the probe is mainly located at the plasma membrane enabling the estimation of the extent of the cholesterol depletion. We confirmed that the mouse oocyte is rich in rafts according to the presence of the raft marker lipid, ganglioside GM1 on the membrane of living oocytes and we identified the coexistence of two types of microdomains, planar rafts and caveolae-like structures, by terms of two differential rafts markers, flotillin-2 and caveolin-1, respectively. Moreover, this is the first report that shows characteristic caveolae-like invaginations in the mouse oocyte identified by electron microscopy. Raft disruption by cholesterol depletion disturbed the subcellular localization of the signal molecule c-Src and the inhibition of Src kinase proteins prevented second polar body extrusion, consistent with a role of Src-related kinases in fertilization via signaling complexes. Our data highlight the functional importance of intact membrane rafts for mouse fertilization and its dependence on cholesterol.

  19. Structural interactions of a voltage sensor toxin with lipid membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Mihailescu, Mihaela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Milescu, Mirela; Gawrisch, Klaus; Swartz, Kenton J.; White, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Tarantula venom contains protein toxins that interact with diverse families of ion channels and alter their activity. A number of tarantula toxins are known to interact with membranes and are thought to bind to ion channel proteins within the lipid bilayer. In the present study, we find that tarantula toxins influence the structure and dynamics of the lipid bilayer, and that the toxin orients itself within membranes to facilitate formation of the toxin–channel complexes. Our results have impl...

  20. Optimization of fluorimetric lipid membrane biosensor sensitivity through manipulation of membrane structure and nitrobenzoxadiazole dipalmitoylphosphatidylethanolamine concentration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shrive, Jason D. A.; Krull, Ulrich J.

    1995-01-01

    In the work reported here, surface concentrations of 0.027 and 0.073 molecules nm-2 of the fluorescent membrane probe molecule nitrobenzoxadiazole dipalmitoylphosphatidylethanolamine (NBD-PE) were shown to yield optimum sensitivity for fluorimetric transduction of membrane structural perturbations for lipid membrane-based biosensor development. These optima were obtained through correlation of experimental data with theoretical predictions of optimum surface concentrations based on a model for NBD-PE self quenching previously published by our group. It was also determined that membrane structural heterogeneity improves the sensitivity of NBD-PE labeled membrane transducers. Together with fluorescence microscopy, observations of surface potential change upon compression or expansion of phosphatidylcholine (PC)/phosphatidic acid (PA) monolayers were used to qualitatively indicate the degree of structural heterogeneity in these membranes. It was determined that sub-microscopic domains must exist in microscopically homogeneous egg PC/egg PA membranes in order to facilitate the observed NBD-PE self-quenching responses upon alteration of bulk pH and therefore, membrane surface electrostatics and structure.

  1. Structural alterations in irradiated myoglobin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Effects of radiation on the structure-function relationship of myoglobin molecule have been extensively studied. It was observed that even though myoglobins from various species are structurally similar, offering two major sites for radiation damage - viz., protoporphyrin nucleus and the apoglobin moiety, they differ greatly in their responses to radiation. In the case of fish myoglobins known to contain sulphydryl groups, metmyoglobin was converted to oxymyoglobin as a result of irradiation (50 and 100 Krad), as evidenced by their spectral pattern. On the other hand, lamb meat myoglobin devoid of sulphydryl groups, showed anomalous spectral behaviour when subjected to different doses of radiation. Differences were also observed in the occurrence of microheterogeneity; lamb meat myoglobin separating into two coloured fractions (LM I and LM II) on sephadex G-100 column, each of these fractions resolving further into 3 - 4 bands on polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Indian salmon and black pomfret myoglobins did not exhibit microheterogeneity. The effects of radiation on the catalytic function of myoglobin in autoxidation have also been discussed. (author)

  2. Alterations of red cell membrane properties in neuroacanthocytosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Siegl

    Full Text Available Neuroacanthocytosis (NA refers to a group of heterogenous, rare genetic disorders, namely chorea acanthocytosis (ChAc, McLeod syndrome (MLS, Huntington's disease-like 2 (HDL2 and pantothenate kinase associated neurodegeneration (PKAN, that mainly affect the basal ganglia and are associated with similar neurological symptoms. PKAN is also assigned to a group of rare neurodegenerative diseases, known as NBIA (neurodegeneration with brain iron accumulation, associated with iron accumulation in the basal ganglia and progressive movement disorder. Acanthocytosis, the occurrence of misshaped erythrocytes with thorny protrusions, is frequently observed in ChAc and MLS patients but less prevalent in PKAN (about 10% and HDL2 patients. The pathological factors that lead to the formation of the acanthocytic red blood cell shape are currently unknown. The aim of this study was to determine whether NA/NBIA acanthocytes differ in their functionality from normal erythrocytes. Several flow-cytometry-based assays were applied to test the physiological responses of the plasma membrane, namely drug-induced endocytosis, phosphatidylserine exposure and calcium uptake upon treatment with lysophosphatidic acid. ChAc red cell samples clearly showed a reduced response in drug-induced endovesiculation, lysophosphatidic acid-induced phosphatidylserine exposure, and calcium uptake. Impaired responses were also observed in acanthocyte-positive NBIA (PKAN red cells but not in patient cells without shape abnormalities. These data suggest an "acanthocytic state" of the red cell where alterations in functional and interdependent membrane properties arise together with an acanthocytic cell shape. Further elucidation of the aberrant molecular mechanisms that cause this acanthocytic state may possibly help to evaluate the pathological pathways leading to neurodegeneration.

  3. Plant membranes a biophysical approach to structure, development and senescence

    CERN Document Server

    Leshem, Ya’Acov Y

    1992-01-01

    The plasma membrane is at once the window through which the cell senses the environment and the portal through which the environment influences the structure and activities of the cell. Its importance in cellular physiology can thus hardly be overestimated, since constant flow of materials between cell and environment is essential to the well-being of any biological system. The nature of the materials mov­ ing into the cell is also critical, since some substances are required for maintenance and growth, while others, because of their toxicity, must either be rigorously excluded or permitted to enter only after chemical alteration. Such alteration frequently permits the compounds to be sequestered in special cellular compartments having different types of membranes. This type of homogeneity, plus the fact that the wear and tear of transmembrane molecular traffic compels the system to be constantly monitored and repaired, means that the membrane system of any organism must be both structurally complex and dy­...

  4. Outer membrane alterations in multiresistant mutants of Pseudomonas aeruginosa selected by ciprofloxacin.

    OpenAIRE

    Legakis, N. J.; Tzouvelekis, L. S.; Makris, A; Kotsifaki, H

    1989-01-01

    Spontaneous mutants of Pseudomonas aeruginosa selected by ciprofloxacin were studied for outer membrane alterations. Acquisition of ciprofloxacin resistance was at least partially related to defects in lipopolysaccharide synthesis. When ciprofloxacin resistance was combined with resistance to beta-lactams and aminoglycosides, several alterations in outer membrane proteins were noted.

  5. Salt Concentration Differences Alter Membrane Resistance in Reverse Electrodialysis Stacks

    KAUST Repository

    Geise, Geoffrey M.

    2014-01-14

    Membrane ionic resistance is usually measured by immersing the membrane in a salt solution at a single, fixed concentration. While salt concentration is known to affect membrane resistance when the same concentration is used on both sides of the membrane, little is known about membrane resistance when the membrane is placed between solutions of different concentrations, such as in a reverse electrodialysis (RED) stack. Ionic resistance measurements obtained using Selemion CMV and AMV that separated sodium chloride and ammonium bicarbonate solutions of different concentrations were greater than those measured using only the high-concentration solution. Measured RED stack resistances showed good agreement with resistances calculated using an equivalent series resistance model, where the membranes accounted for 46% of the total stack resistance. The high area resistance of the membranes separating different salt concentration solutions has implications for modeling and optimizing membranes used in RED systems.

  6. Membrane protein structure determination in membrana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Yi; Yao, Yong; Marassi, Francesca M

    2013-09-17

    The two principal components of biological membranes, the lipid bilayer and the proteins integrated within it, have coevolved for specific functions that mediate the interactions of cells with their environment. Molecular structures can provide very significant insights about protein function. In the case of membrane proteins, the physical and chemical properties of lipids and proteins are highly interdependent; therefore structure determination should include the membrane environment. Considering the membrane alongside the protein eliminates the possibility that crystal contacts or detergent molecules could distort protein structure, dynamics, and function and enables ligand binding studies to be performed in a natural setting. Solid-state NMR spectroscopy is compatible with three-dimensional structure determination of membrane proteins in phospholipid bilayer membranes under physiological conditions and has played an important role in elucidating the physical and chemical properties of biological membranes, providing key information about the structure and dynamics of the phospholipid components. Recently, developments in the recombinant expression of membrane proteins, sample preparation, pulse sequences for high-resolution spectroscopy, radio frequency probes, high-field magnets, and computational methods have enabled a number of membrane protein structures to be determined in lipid bilayer membranes. In this Account, we illustrate solid-state NMR methods with examples from two bacterial outer membrane proteins (OmpX and Ail) that form integral membrane β-barrels. The ability to measure orientation-dependent frequencies in the solid-state NMR spectra of membrane-embedded proteins provides the foundation for a powerful approach to structure determination based primarily on orientation restraints. Orientation restraints are particularly useful for NMR structural studies of membrane proteins because they provide information about both three-dimensional structure

  7. Membrane-mediated changes in the structure of chromosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belyaev, N D; Budker, V G; Dubrovskaya, V A; Khristoljubova, N B; Kiseleva, E V; Matveeva, N M; Sukojan, M A

    1985-01-01

    In the present paper the interaction of metaphase chromosomes and chromatin with model and natural lipid membranes was studied. It was shown that chromatin and chromosomes are able to form complexes with membranes in the presence of divalent cations. In such complexes, the typical structure of chromosomes is altered. The character of this alteration in chromosomal structure was investigated with the use of electron microscopy and chemical modification with dimethylsulphate (DMS). The latter is possible because, according to the presented data, the condensation of chromatin into chromosomes is associated with a decrease in accessibility of N-3 in adenine (the protection of the minor groove of DNA) to modifications, and with an increased methylation of N-1 in adenine (the disarrangement of the secondary structure of DNA). It was shown that the interaction of chromosomes with liposomes provides various levels of unfolding up to the appearance of chromatin-like structures. The secondary DNA structure of decondensed chromosomes coincides with the secondary structure of chromosomal but not chromatin DNA, whereas the extent of shielding of the minor groove of DNA in such decondensed structures typical for chromatin DNA. It is possible to suggest that the chromosomal decondensation in telophase of mitosis is initiated by the action of a membrane component of the developing nuclear envelope. PMID:3926416

  8. Altered Membrane Potential and Electrolyte in Sickle Cell Anemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JK Nnodim

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim: This study has been to evaluate the level of membrane potential and electrolyte in sickle cell disease patients. Material and methods: 100 sickle cell patients in steady state ages 5 to 30 years attending General Hospital Owerri were used in the study while 100 normal subjects (HbAA were used as control. Also 30 HbSS in crisis have been involved. Results: The results obtained showed that the level of membrane potential was significantly lower in sickle cell anemia as compared to the controls. Also, the level of the electrolyte was found significantly decreased in HbSS when compared with HbAA at P<0.05. Conclusion: The membrane potential translates to energy which means that there is less energy in sickle cell disease which is linked to electrolyte imbalance. Hence people with sickle disease should be monitored closely for their electrolytes to avoid crisis.

  9. Penetration of the signal sequence of Escherichia coli PhoE protein into phospholipid model membranes leads to lipid-specific changes in signal peptide structure and alterations of lipid organization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Batenburg, A.M.; Demel, R.A.; Verkleij, A.J.; de Kruijff, B.

    1988-07-26

    In order to obtain more insight in the initial steps of the process of protein translocation across membranes, biophysical investigations were undertaken on the lipid specificity and structural consequences of penetration of the PhoE signal peptide into lipid model membranes and on the conformation of the signal peptide adopted upon interaction with the lipids. When the monolayer technique and differential scanning calorimetry are used, a stronger penetration is observed for negatively charged lipids, significantly influenced by the physical state of the lipid but not by temperature or acyl chain unsaturation as such. Although the interaction is principally electrostatic, as indicated also by the strong penetration of N-terminal fragments into negatively charged lipid monolayers, the effect of ionic strength suggests an additional hydrophobic component. Most interestingly with regard to the mechanism of protein translocation, the molecular area of the peptide in the monolayer also shows lipid specificity: the area in the presence of PC is consistent with a looped helical orientation, whereas in the presence of cardiolipin a time-dependent conformational change is observed, most likely leading from a looped to a stretched orientation with the N-terminus directed toward the water. This is in line also with the determined peptide-lipid stoichiometry. Preliminary /sup 31/P NMR and electron microscopy data on the interaction with lipid bilayer systems indicate loss of bilayer structure.

  10. Penetration of the signal sequence of Escherichia coli PhoE protein into phospholipid model membranes leads to lipid-specific changes in signal peptide structure and alterations of lipid organization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In order to obtain more insight in the initial steps of the process of protein translocation across membranes, biophysical investigations were undertaken on the lipid specificity and structural consequences of penetration of the PhoE signal peptide into lipid model membranes and on the conformation of the signal peptide adopted upon interaction with the lipids. When the monolayer technique and differential scanning calorimetry are used, a stronger penetration is observed for negatively charged lipids, significantly influenced by the physical state of the lipid but not by temperature or acyl chain unsaturation as such. Although the interaction is principally electrostatic, as indicated also by the strong penetration of N-terminal fragments into negatively charged lipid monolayers, the effect of ionic strength suggests an additional hydrophobic component. Most interestingly with regard to the mechanism of protein translocation, the molecular area of the peptide in the monolayer also shows lipid specificity: the area in the presence of PC is consistent with a looped helical orientation, whereas in the presence of cardiolipin a time-dependent conformational change is observed, most likely leading from a looped to a stretched orientation with the N-terminus directed toward the water. This is in line also with the determined peptide-lipid stoichiometry. Preliminary 31P NMR and electron microscopy data on the interaction with lipid bilayer systems indicate loss of bilayer structure

  11. Coarctation induces alterations in basement membranes in the cardiovascular system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lipke, D W; McCarthy, K J; Elton, T S;

    1993-01-01

    A coarctation hypertensive rat model was used to examine the effects of elevated blood pressure on basement membrane component synthesis by cardiac myocytes and aorta using immunohistochemistry and Northern blot analysis. Carotid arterial pressure increased immediately on coarctation, and left ve...

  12. Structural basis for membrane anchoring of HIV-1 envelope spike.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dev, Jyoti; Park, Donghyun; Fu, Qingshan; Chen, Jia; Ha, Heather Jiwon; Ghantous, Fadi; Herrmann, Tobias; Chang, Weiting; Liu, Zhijun; Frey, Gary; Seaman, Michael S; Chen, Bing; Chou, James J

    2016-07-01

    HIV-1 envelope spike (Env) is a type I membrane protein that mediates viral entry. We used nuclear magnetic resonance to determine an atomic structure of the transmembrane (TM) domain of HIV-1 Env reconstituted in bicelles that mimic a lipid bilayer. The TM forms a well-ordered trimer that protects a conserved membrane-embedded arginine. An amino-terminal coiled-coil and a carboxyl-terminal hydrophilic core stabilize the trimer. Individual mutations of conserved residues did not disrupt the TM trimer and minimally affected membrane fusion and infectivity. Major changes in the hydrophilic core, however, altered the antibody sensitivity of Env. These results show how a TM domain anchors, stabilizes, and modulates a viral envelope spike and suggest that its influence on Env conformation is an important consideration for HIV-1 immunogen design. PMID:27338706

  13. Phytochemicals Perturb Membranes and Promiscuously Alter Protein Function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ingólfsson, Helgi I; Thakur, Pratima; Herold, Karl F; Hobart, E Ashley; Ramsey, Nicole B; Periole, Xavier; de Jong, Djurre H; Zwama, Martijn; Yilmaz, Duygu; Hall, Katherine; Maretzky, Thorsten; Hemmings, Hugh C; Blobel, Carl; Marrink, Siewert J; Kocer, Armagan; Sack, Jon T; Andersen, Olaf S

    2014-01-01

    A wide variety of phytochemicals are consumed for their perceived health benefits. Many of these phytochemicals have been found to alter numerous cell functions, but the mechanisms underlying their biological activity tend to be poorly understood. Phenolic phytochemicals are particularly promiscuous

  14. STRUCTURAL ALTERATIONS OF SKELETAL MUSCLE IN COPD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunita eMathur

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD is a respiratory disease associated with a systemic inflammatory response. Peripheral muscle dysfunction has been well characterized in individuals with COPD and results from a complex interaction between systemic and local factors. Objective: In this narrative review, we will describe muscle wasting in people with COPD, the associated structural changes, muscle regenerative capacity and possible mechanisms for muscle wasting. We will also discuss how structural changes relate to impaired muscle function and mobility in people with COPD. Key Observations: Approximately 30-40% of individuals with COPD experience muscle mass depletion. Furthermore, muscle atrophy is a predictor of physical function and mortality in this population. Associated structural changes include a decreased proportion and size of type-I fibers, reduced oxidative capacity and mitochondrial density mainly in the quadriceps. Observations related to impaired muscle regenerative capacity in individuals with COPD include a lower proportion of central nuclei in the presence or absence of muscle atrophy and decreased maximal telomere length, which has been correlated with reduced muscle cross-sectional area. Potential mechanisms for muscle wasting in COPD may include excessive production of reactive oxygen species, altered amino acid metabolism and lower expression of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors-gamma-coactivator 1-alpha mRNA. Despite a moderate relationship between muscle atrophy and function, impairments in oxidative metabolism only seems weakly related to muscle function. Conclusion: This review article demonstrates the cellular modifications in the peripheral muscle of people with COPD and describes the evidence of its relationship to muscle function. Future research will focus on rehabilitation strategies to improve muscle wasting and maximize function.

  15. Alteration of membrane phospholipid methylation by adenosine analogs does not affect T lymphocyte activation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Membrane phospholipid methylation has been described during activation of various immune cells. Moreover recent data indicated modulation of immune cells functions by adenosine. As S-adenosyl-methionine and S-adenosyl-homocysteine are adenosine analogs and modulators of transmethylation reactions, the effects of SAH and SAM were investigated on membrane phospholipid methylation and lymphocyte activation. SAM was shown to induce the membrane phospholipid methylation as assessed by the 3Hmethyl-incorporation in membrane extract. This effect was inhibited by SAH. In contrast SAM and SAH did not affect the phytohemagglutinin-induced proliferative response of peripheral blood mononuclear cells. SAH neither modified the early internalization of membrane CD3 antigens nor did it prevent the late expression of HLA-DR antigens on lymphocytes activated by phytohemagglutinin. These results indicate that in vitro alteration of phospholipid methylation does not affect subsequent steps of human T lymphocyte activation and proliferation

  16. Exploiting Microbeams for Membrane Protein Structure Determination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, Anna J; Axford, Danny; Paterson, Neil G; Owen, Robin L

    2016-01-01

    A reproducible, and sample independent means of predictably obtaining large, well-ordered crystals has proven elusive in macromolecular crystallography. In the structure determination pipeline, crystallisation often proves to be a rate-limiting step, and the process of obtaining even small or badly ordered crystals can prove time-consuming and laborious. This is particularly true in the field of membrane protein crystallography and this is reflected in the limited number of unique membrane protein structures deposited in the protein data bank (less than 650 by June 2016 - http://blanco.biomol.uci.edu/mpstruc ). Over recent years the requirement for, and time and cost associated with obtaining, large crystals has been partially alleviated through the development of beamline instrumentation allowing data collection, and structure solution, from ever-smaller crystals. Advances in several areas have led to a step change in what might be considered achievable during a synchrotron trip over the last decade. This chapter will briefly review the current status of the field, the tools available to ease data collection and processing, and give some examples of exploitation of these for membrane protein microfocus macromolecular crystallography. PMID:27553238

  17. Electrostatic Inflation of Membrane Space Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stiles, Laura A.

    Membrane space structures provide a lightweight and cost effective alternative to traditional mechanical systems. The low-mass and high deployed-to-stored volume ratios allow for larger structures to be launched, expanding on-orbit science and technology capabilities. This research explores a novel method for deployment of membrane space structures using electrostatic pressure as the inflation mechanism. Applying electric charge to a layered gossamer structure provides an inflationary pressure due to the repulsive electrostatic forces between the charged layers. The electrostatic inflation of membrane structures (EIMS) concept is particularly applicable to non-precision structures such as sunshields or drag de-orbiting devices. This research addresses three fundamental topics: necessary conditions for EIMS in a vacuum, necessary conditions for EIMS in a plasma, and charging methods. Vacuum demonstrations show that less than 10 kiloVolts are required for electrostatic inflation of membrane structures in 1-g. On-orbit perturbation forces can be much smaller, suggesting feasible voltage requirements. Numerical simulation enables a relationship between required inflation pressure (to offset disturbances) and voltage. 100's of Volts are required for inflation in geosynchronous orbits (GEO) and a few kiloVolts in low Earth orbit (LEO). While GEO plasma has a small impact on the EIMS performance, Debye shielding at LEO reduces the electrostatic pressure. The classic Debye shielding prediction is far worse than actual shielding, raising the `effective' Debye length to the meter scale in LEO, suggesting feasibility for EIMS in LEO. Charged particle emission and remote charging methods are explored as inflation mechanisms. Secondary electron emission characteristics of EIMS materials were determined experimentally. Nonlinear fits to the Sternglass curve determined a maximum yield of 1.83 at 433 eV for Aluminized Kapton and a maximum yield of 1.78 at 511 eV for Aluminized

  18. Impacts of operating conditions and solution chemistry on osmotic membrane structure and performance

    KAUST Repository

    Wong, Mavis C.Y.

    2012-02-01

    Herein, we report on changes in the performance of a commercial cellulose triacetate (CTA) membrane, imparted by varied operating conditions and solution chemistries. Changes to feed and draw solution flow rate did not significantly alter the CTA membrane\\'s water permeability, salt permeability, or membrane structural parameter when operated with the membrane skin layer facing the draw solution (PRO-mode). However, water and salt permeability increased with increasing feed or draw solution temperature, while the membrane structural parameter decreased with increasing draw solution, possibly due to changes in polymer intermolecular interactions. High ionic strength draw solutions may de-swell the CTA membrane via charge neutralization, which resulted in lower water permeability, higher salt permeability, and lower structural parameter. This observed trend was further exacerbated by the presence of divalent cations which tends to swell the polymer to a greater extent. Finally, the calculated CTA membrane\\'s structural parameter was lower and less sensitive to external factors when operated in PRO-mode, but highly sensitive to the same factors when the skin layer faced the feed solution (FO-mode), presumably due to swelling/de-swelling of the saturated porous substructure by the draw solution. This is a first attempt aimed at systematically evaluating the changes in performance of the CTA membrane due to operating conditions and solution chemistry, shedding new insight into the possible advantages and disadvantages of this material in certain applications. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

  19. Chronic cigarette smoking alters erythrocyte membrane lipid composition and properties in male human volunteers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Padmavathi, Pannuru; Reddy, Vaddi Damodara; Kavitha, Godugu; Paramahamsa, Maturu; Varadacharyulu, Nallanchakravarthula

    2010-11-01

    Cigarette smoking is a major lifestyle factor influencing the health of human beings. The present study investigates smoking induced alterations on the erythrocyte membrane lipid composition, fluidity and the role of nitric oxide. Thirty experimental and control subjects (age 35+/-8) were selected for the study. Experimental subjects smoke 12+/-2 cigarettes per day for 7-10 years. In smokers elevated nitrite/nitrate levels in plasma and red cell lysates were observed. Smokers showed increased hemolysis, erythrocyte membrane lipid peroxidation, protein carbonyls, C/P ratio (cholesterol and phospholipid ratio), anisotropic (gamma) value with decreased Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase activity and sulfhydryl groups. Alterations in smokers erythrocyte membrane individual phospholipids were also evident from the study. Red cell lysate nitric oxide positively correlated with C/P ratio (r=0.565) and fluorescent anisotropic (gamma) value (r=0.386) in smokers. Smoking induced generation of reactive oxygen/nitrogen species might have altered erythrocyte membrane physico-chemical properties. PMID:20561918

  20. Daptomycin resistance in enterococci is associated with distinct alterations of cell membrane phospholipid content.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nagendra N Mishra

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The lipopeptide antibiotic, daptomycin (DAP interacts with the bacterial cell membrane (CM. Development of DAP resistance during therapy in a clinical strain of Enterococcus faecalis was associated with mutations in genes encoding enzymes involved in cell envelope homeostasis and phospholipid metabolism. Here we characterized changes in CM phospholipid profiles associated with development of DAP resistance in clinical enterococcal strains. METHODOLOGY: Using two clinical strain-pairs of DAP-susceptible and DAP-resistant E. faecalis (S613 vs. R712 and E. faecium (S447 vs. R446 recovered before and after DAP therapy, we compared four distinct CM profiles: phospholipid content, fatty acid composition, membrane fluidity and capacity to be permeabilized and/or depolarized by DAP. Additionally, we characterized the cell envelope of the E. faecium strain-pair by transmission electron microscopy and determined the relative cell surface charge of both strain-pairs. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Both E. faecalis and E. faecium mainly contained four major CM PLs: phosphatidylglycerol (PG, cardiolipin, lysyl-phosphatidylglycerol (L-PG and glycerolphospho-diglycodiacylglycerol (GP-DGDAG. In addition, E. faecalis CMs (but not E. faecium also contained: i phosphatidic acid; and ii two other unknown species of amino-containing PLs. Development of DAP resistance in both enterococcal species was associated with a significant decrease in CM fluidity and PG content, with a concomitant increase in GP-DGDAG. The strain-pairs did not differ in their outer CM translocation (flipping of amino-containing PLs. Fatty acid content did not change in the E. faecalis strain-pair, whereas a significant decrease in unsaturated fatty acids was observed in the DAP-resistant E. faecium isolate R446 (vs S447. Resistance to DAP in E. faecium was associated with distinct structural alterations of the cell envelope and cell wall thickening, as well as a decreased ability of DAP to

  1. Mycobacteria glycolipids as potential pathogenicity effectors: alteration of model and natural membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sut, A; Sirugue, S; Sixou, S; Lakhdar-Ghazal, F; Tocanne, J F; Lanéelle, G

    1990-09-11

    Four mycobacterial wall glycolipids were tested for their effects on phospholipidic liposome organization and passive permeability and on oxidative phosphorylation of isolated mitochondria. From fluorescence polarization of diphenylhexatriene performed on liposomes it was concluded that the two trehalose derivatives (dimycoloyltrehalose and polyphthienoyltrehalose) rigidified the fluid state of liposomes, the triglycosyl phenolphthiocerol slightly fluidized the gel state, while the peptidoglycolipid ("apolar" mycoside C) just shifted the phase transition temperature upward. Dimycoloyltrehalose was without effect on liposome passive permeability, as estimated from dicarboxyfluorescein leak rates, and polyphthienoyltrehalose and triglycosyl phenolphthiocerol slightly decreased leaks, while mycoside C dramatically increased leaks. Activity of these lipids on mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation was examined. The two trehalose derivatives have been tested previously: both had the same type of inhibitory activity, dimycoloyltrehalose being the most active. Triglycosyl phenolphthiocerol was inactive. Mycoside C was very active, with effects resembling those of classical uncouplers: this suggested that its activity on mitochondria was related to its effect on permeability. All these membrane alterations were called nonspecific because it is likely that they result from nonspecific lipid-lipid interactions, and not from recognition between specific molecular structures. Such nonspecific interactions could be at the origin of some of the effects of mycobacteria glycolipids on cells of the immune system observed in the last few years. PMID:2123718

  2. pH Dependence of Chlorophyll States, Protein Structures and Function of the PSII Membranes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李冬海; 阮翔; 许强; 王可玢; 公衍道; 匡廷云; 张秀芳; 赵南明

    2003-01-01

    The effect of varying pH on the photosystem II (PSII) membrane was studied using absorption and steady-state fluorescence spectroscopy, and using a variable fluorescence technique.pH variations induced significant changes in the chlorophyll states of the PSII membrane, but no effect was seen on the chlorophyll fluorescence parameter F′v/F′m.For acidic pH conditions, protein structures of the PSII membrane were slightly altered, whilst at alkaline pH levels, large changes in the protein structure of the PSII membrane were detected.The results indicate that the microenvironment around Cys in the PSII membrane is very susceptible to alkaline pH conditions, and that in the acid (4≤pH7) regions, pH variation has no effect on the protein structures of the PSII reaction center (RC).

  3. Recent developments in membrane-protein structural genomics

    OpenAIRE

    Gao, Fei Philip; Cross, Timothy A.

    2006-01-01

    Recent work has identified the topology of almost all the inner membrane proteins in Escherichia coli, and advances in nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy now allow the determination of α-helical membrane protein structures at high resolution. Together these developments will help overcome the current limitations of high-throughput determination of membrane protein structures.

  4. Mathematical Model of Gas Permeation Through PTFEP orous Membrane and the Effect of Membrane Pore Structure

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张秀莉; 张卫东; 郝新政; 张慧峰; 张泽廷; 张建春

    2003-01-01

    Membrane-based separation processes are new technology combined membrane separation with conventional separation. Hydrophobic porous membranes are often used in these processes. The structure of hydrophobic porous membrane has significant effect on mass transfer process. The permeabilities of five kinds of gas, He, N2,O2, CO2 and water vapor, across six polytetrafluoroethylene(PTFE) fiat membranes were tested experimentally.Results indicated that the greater the membrane mean pore size and the wider the pore size distribution are, the higher the gas permeability. A gas permeation model, including the effects of membrane structure parameter and gas properties, was established. A comprehensive characteristic parameter (including porosity, thickness and tortuosity) was found more effective to express the influence of membrane structure in gas permeation process. The predicted permeation coefficients were in good agreement with experimental data.

  5. Transport studies through peritoneal membrane: Effect of alteration in concentration of Trace Metal Ion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The effect of trace metals on thermodynamic properties of peritoneum has been examined. Membrane potential across peritoneal membrane of buffalo (Bof. Bubalis) for various 2:1, 3:1 and 1:2 electrolytes solutions have been measured with a view to examine the transport number of ions, effective fixed charge density and permselectivity of electrolyte systems. The transport number of co-ions decreased as the concentration of electrolyte is decreased. The applicability of different theories of membrane given by Kobatake et al. based on non-equilibrium thermodynamics have been tested. It has been observed that in biological systems also the fixed charged density is a constant quantity and does not vary with the concentrations of electrolytes as in the case of artificial membranes. Equations for 3:1 and 2:1 electrolytes have been derived, which will be essential for evaluating the transport number of trace material ions. This experimental model can be used to study and calculate the transport to study and calculate the transport number across biological membrane using Benventa's equation. The result of this study is valuable in understanding the influence of alteration in trace elements milieu on electrophysical behavior of all membranes. (author)

  6. Membrane permeability alteration of some bacterial clinical isolates by selected antihistaminics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moustafa A El-Nakeeb

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Several antihistaminics possess antibacterial activity against a broad spectrum of bacteria. However, the exact mechanism of such activity was unclear. Hence, the aim of this study is to investigate their mechanism of antibacterial activity especially their effect upon the permeability of the bacterial cytoplasmic membrane. The effects of azelastine, cetirizine, cyproheptadine and diphenhydramine were studied using Gram-positive and Gram-negative multiresistant clinical isolates. Leakage of 260 and 280 nm UV-absorbing materials was detected upon treatment with the tested antihistaminics; indicative of membrane alteration. Using an artificial membrane model, cholesterol-free negatively-charged unilamellar liposomes, confirmed the effect of antihistaminics upon the membrane permeability both by showing an apparent membrane damage as observed microscopically and by detection of leakage of preloaded dye from the liposomes colorimatrically. Moreover, examination of the ultrastructure of cells treated with azelastine and cetirizine under the transmission electron microscope substantiated the detected abnormalities in the cell wall and membrane. Furthermore, the effect of pretreating certain isolates for both short and long periods with selected antihistaminics was followed by the viable count technique. Increased vulnerability towards further exposure to azelastine was observed in cells pretreated with azelastine for 2 days and those pretreated with azelastine or cetrizine for 30 days.

  7. Wind-induced response analysis of conical membrane structures

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN Bo; WU Yue; SHEN Shi-zhao

    2005-01-01

    Conical membrane structures are a typical form of tensile membrane structures. In the past, most studies focused on the static performance, but few on dynamic performance. In this paper, systematic parameter analysis of wind-induced response of conical membrane structures has been performed with nonlinear random simulation method in a time domain, by considering some parameters, such as span, rise-span ratio, prestress of membrane, and characteristic of the approaching wind flow. Moreover, formulas of the dynamic coefficient and nonlinear adjustment factor are advised, which can be conveniently used in wind-resistant design of conical membrane structures.

  8. Loss of liver FA binding protein significantly alters hepatocyte plasma membrane microdomains[S

    OpenAIRE

    McIntosh, Avery L.; Atshaves, Barbara P.; Storey, Stephen M.; Landrock, Kerstin K.; Landrock, Danilo; Martin, Gregory G.; Kier, Ann B.; Schroeder, Friedhelm

    2012-01-01

    Although lipid-rich microdomains of hepatocyte plasma membranes serve as the major scaffolding regions for cholesterol transport proteins important in cholesterol disposition, little is known regarding intracellular factors regulating cholesterol distribution therein. On the basis of its ability to bind cholesterol and alter hepatic cholesterol accumulation, the cytosolic liver type FA binding protein (L-FABP) was hypothesized to be a candidate protein regulating these microdomains. Compared ...

  9. Structural changes in plasma membrane under influence of ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The effects ionizing radiation on membranes was studied. Changes arising in the oligosaccharide layer of the surface of the cell membrane, in the protein and lipid phases of membranes under the influence of radiation, as well as possible schemes of formation of structural changes in the membrane are discussed. Molecular bases of structural membrane changes induced by radiation, and determination of their role in development of cell pathology were investigated. The influence of the state of irradiated cell membranes on their radiosensitivity are also studied

  10. Dynamical and Phase Behavior of a Phospholipid Membrane Altered by an Antimicrobial Peptide at Low Concentration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, V K; Mamontov, E; Tyagi, M; Qian, S; Rai, D K; Urban, V S

    2016-07-01

    The mechanism of action of antimicrobial peptides is traditionally attributed to the formation of pores in the lipid cell membranes of pathogens, which requires a substantial peptide to lipid ratio. However, using incoherent neutron scattering, we show that even at a concentration too low for pore formation, an archetypal antimicrobial peptide, melittin, disrupts the regular phase behavior of the microscopic dynamics in a phospholipid membrane, dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC). At the same time, another antimicrobial peptide, alamethicin, does not exert a similar effect on the DMPC microscopic dynamics. The melittin-altered lateral motion of DMPC at physiological temperature no longer resembles the fluid-phase behavior characteristic of functional membranes of the living cells. The disruptive effect demonstrated by melittin even at low concentrations reveals a new mechanism of antimicrobial action relevant in more realistic scenarios, when peptide concentration is not as high as would be required for pore formation, which may facilitate treatment with antimicrobial peptides. PMID:27232190

  11. Structure Determination of Membrane Proteins in Five Easy Pieces

    OpenAIRE

    Marassi, Francesca M.; Das, Bibhuti B.; Lu, George J.; Nothnagel, Henry J.; Park, Sang Ho; Son, Woo Sung; Tian, Ye; Opella, Stanley J.

    2011-01-01

    A general method for determining the structures of membrane proteins in phospholipid bilayers under physiological conditions is described. Membrane proteins are high priority targets for structure determination, and are challenging for the existing experimental methods. Because membrane proteins reside in a liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayer membranes it is important to study them in this type of environment. The approach we have developed can be summarized in five steps, and incorporate...

  12. Controlling Structure in Sulfonated Block Copolymer Membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Truong, Phuc; Stein, Gila; Strzalka, Joe

    2015-03-01

    In many ionic block copolymer systems, the strong incompatibility between ionic and non-ionic segments will trap non-equilibrium structures in the film, making it difficult to engineer the optimal domain sizes and transport pathways. The goal of this work is to establish a framework for controlling the solid-state structure of sulfonated pentablock copolymer membranes. They have ABCBA block sequence, where A is poly(t-butyl styrene), B is poly(hydrogenated isoprene), and C is poly(styrene sulfonate). To process into films, the polymer is dissolved in toluene/n-propanol solvent mixtures, where the solvent proportions and the polymer loading were both varied. Solution-state structure was measured with small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). We detected micelles with radii that depend on the solvent composition and polymer loading. Film structure was measured with grazing-incidence SAXS, which shows (i) domain periodicity is constant throughout film thickness; (ii) domain periodicity depends on solvent composition and polymer loading, and approximately matches the micelle radii in solutions. The solid-state packing is consistent with a hard sphere structure factor. Results suggest that solid-state structure can be tuned by manipulating the solution-state self-assembly.

  13. Guanidination of notexin alters its membrane-damaging activity in response to sphingomyelin and cholesterol

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Pei-Hsiu Kao; Yi-Ling Chiou; Shinne-Ren Lin; Long-Sen Chang

    2010-12-01

    To elucidate the contribution of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activity of notexin to its ability to perturb membranes, comparative studies on the interaction of notexin and guanidinated notexin (Gu-notexin) with egg yolk phosphatidylcholine (EYPC), EYPC/egg yolk sphingomyelin (EYSM) and EYPC/EYSM/cholesterol vesicles were conducted. EYSM notably reduced the membrane-damaging activity of notexin against EYPC vesicles, but had an insignificant influence on that of Gu-notexin. Unlike the effects noted with notexin, inactivation of PLA2 activity by EDTA led to a reduction in the ability of Gu-notexin to induce EYPC/EYSM vesicle leakage and to increase Gu-notexin-induced membrane permeability of EYPC/EYSM/cholesterol vesicles. The geometrical arrangement of notexin and Gu-notexin in contact with either EYPC/EYSM vesicles or EYPC/EYSM/cholesterol vesicles differed. Moreover, global conformation of notexin and Gu-notexin differed in either Ca2+-bound or metal-free states. These results indicate that notexin and Gu-notexin could induce membrane permeability without the involvement of PLA2 activity, and suggest that guanidination alters the membrane-bound mode of notexin on damaging phospholipid vesicles containing sphingomyelin and cholesterol.

  14. Structural aspects of polymer membrane transport properties

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bleha, Miroslav; Pientka, Zbyněk

    Valladolid: Secretariado de Publicaciones. Universidad de Valladolid, 1993, s. 225. ISBN 84-7762-359-7. [European Society of Membranes Science and Technology (ESMST). Sumer School on Membranes (10.). Valladolid (ES), 20.09.1993-24.09.1993

  15. Changes in plasma membrane structure upon irradiation on thymocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thymocytes were irradiated with doses of 4 to 104 Gy. The binding of 1-anilinonaphtalene-8-sulphonate and Ca2+ to plasma membranes; viscosity and lipid peroxidation; Stern-Folmer constant; and the number of Sh-groups of membrane proteins were determined. The structural changes in plasma membranes after irradiation of thymocytes were found to be cooperative

  16. Effect of ionizing radiation and calcium on plasma membrane structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Plasma membrane thymocytes were irradiated with doses of 10-104 Gy in the presence of 125 and 1125 μ mol of Ca2+ per 1 mg of membrane proteins. Fluorescence of 1-anilinonaphthalene-8-sulphonate and the degree of puren eximerization were determined. The data obtained indicate that calcium can exert a stabilizing effect on the plasma membrane structure affected by radiation

  17. Dynamic Structure Formation of Peripheral Membrane Proteins

    OpenAIRE

    Morozova, Diana; Guigas, Gernot; Weiss, Matthias

    2011-01-01

    Author Summary Eukaryotic cells are subdivided into a variety of compartments by membranes, i.e. by lipid bilayers into which a multitude of proteins are embedded. About 30% of all protein species in a cell are associated with membranes to perform vital functions, e.g. in signaling and transport pathways. A plethora of membrane-associated proteins, so-called peripheral membrane proteins, penetrate only one monolayer whereas transmembrane proteins span the entire thickness of a lipid bilayer. ...

  18. Lipids in the structure and functions of biological membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuznetsov V.I.

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Lipids are one of the main components of cellular membranes. Lipids make up 30-55% of the cell content depending on the types of cells. Phospholipids, sphingomyelins, cholesterol, etc. are characteristic to cellular membranes. The composition of lipids of the both sides of the membranes differs. This fact determines asymmetry of the structure of bili-pid layer. The reason for many pathologies is the changes in the properties of cellular membranes with the modification of their components. The study of structure and functioning of cellular biomembranes is essential for many researchers. The condition of membranes, their quality, their quantitative composition and modification under the influence of different factors as well as their interaction with carbohydrate and protein component are of great importance for the functioning of both membranes, cells and the body in general. Analysis and structuring of lipids and their functions in biological membranes are studied.

  19. Eugenol alters the integrity of cell membrane and acts against the nosocomial pathogen Proteus mirabilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devi, K Pandima; Sakthivel, R; Nisha, S Arif; Suganthy, N; Pandian, S Karutha

    2013-03-01

    Eugenol, a member of the phenylpropanoids class of chemical compounds, is a clear to pale yellow oily liquid extracted from certain essential oils especially from clove oil, nutmeg, cinnamon, and bay leaf. The antibacterial activity of eugenol and its mechanism of bactericidal action against Proteus mirabilis were evaluated. Treatment with eugenol at their minimum inhibitory concentration [0.125 % (v/v)] and minimum bactericidal concentration [0.25 % (v/v)] reduced the viability and resulted in complete inhibition of P. mirabilis. A strong bactericidal effect on P. mirabilis was also evident, as eugenol inactivated the bacterial population within 30 min exposure. Chemo-attractant property and the observance of highest antibacterial activity at alkaline pH suggest that eugenol can work more effectively when given in vivo. Eugenol inhibits the virulence factors produced by P. mirabilis as observed by swimming motility, swarming behavior and urease activity. It interacts with cellular membrane of P. mirabilis and makes it highly permeable, forming nonspecific pores on plasma membrane, which in turn directs the release of 260 nm absorbing materials and uptake of more crystal violet from the medium into the cells. SDS-polyacrylamide gel, scanning electron microscopy and Fourier transform infrared analysis further proves the disruptive action of eugenol on the plasma membrane of P. mirabilis. The findings reveal that eugenol shows an excellent bactericidal activity against P. mirabilis by altering the integrity of cell membrane. PMID:23444040

  20. Alterations in Lipid Levels of Mitochondrial Membranes Induced by Amyloid-ß: A Protective Role of Melatonin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio A. Rosales-Corral

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer pathogenesis involves mitochondrial dysfunction, which is closely related to amyloid-ß (Aß generation, abnormal tau phosphorylation, oxidative stress, and apoptosis. Alterations in membranal components, including cholesterol and fatty acids, their characteristics, disposition, and distribution along the membranes, have been studied as evidence of cell membrane alterations in AD brain. The majority of these studies have been focused on the cytoplasmic membrane; meanwhile the mitochondrial membranes have been less explored. In this work, we studied lipids and mitochondrial membranes in vivo, following intracerebral injection of fibrillar amyloid-ß (Aß. The purpose was to determine how Aß may be responsible for beginning of a vicious cycle where oxidative stress and alterations in cholesterol, lipids and fatty acids, feed back on each other to cause mitochondrial dysfunction. We observed changes in mitochondrial membrane lipids, and fatty acids, following intracerebral injection of fibrillar Aß in aged Wistar rats. Melatonin, a well-known antioxidant and neuroimmunomodulator indoleamine, reversed some of these alterations and protected mitochondrial membranes from obvious damage. Additionally, melatonin increased the levels of linolenic and n-3 eicosapentaenoic acid, in the same site where amyloid ß was injected, favoring an endogenous anti-inflammatory pathway.

  1. Rare earth impact on glass structure and alteration kinetics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This work is related to the question of the geological deep repository of high-level waste glass. These wastes include fission products and minor actinides, elements which can be simulated by rare earths. As new glass compositions could enable increased rare earth concentrations, it is crucial to know and understand rare earth impact on glass structure on the one hand, and on glass alteration kinetics or their incorporation into an altered layer. This work studied simplified borosilicate glasses in order to limit synergetic effects between rare earths and other elements. Various complementary techniques were used to characterize pristine and altered glasses (solid-high resolution NMR, Raman spectroscopy, fluorescence, SIMS, SAXS). Firstly, the structural role of a rare earth is discussed and is compared to a calcium cation. The local environment of rare earths is also probed. Secondly, rare earth (nature and concentration) impact on several alteration regimes was studied (initial rate, rate drop). Then, after alteration, rare earth elements being retained within the altered layer, the structural impact of rare earth elements (and their local environment) in this alteration layer was also investigated. (author)

  2. Membrane Elastegrities: A New Model Viscoelastic Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlides, Eleftherios; Pearce, Jennifer

    2014-11-01

    We propose a new class of structures, membrane elastegrities, a network of rigid and elastic members maintaining shape through elastic forces, named by analogy to tensegrities that maintain shape through tension alone. Numerous researchers have proposed tensegrities as models to biological structure. Elastegrities expand tensegrity properties primarily by suggesting a mechanism for containing and pumping non-Newtonian fluids in living organisms. The chiral icosahedral elastegrity compared to the 6-strut tensegrity have identical symmetry, negative Poisson Ratio, and the reaction force to external forces is distributed throughout the elastic members causing reversible deformation. They also have important differences: a) elastic hinge connections enable containment and pumping of fluids versus nodal connections, b) simple assembly by folding a flat shape-memory material versus assembly requiring scaffolding, c) hinge connections limit freedom of movement resulting in isometric forces as members rotate cooperatively contracting versus large freedom of movement with unpredictable deformation. d) The chiral icosahedral elastegrity can contain liquid and requires increased force for equal displacement as it rotates towards a zero volume octahedron suggesting a mechanism for a non-Newtonian pump.

  3. Identification of Novel Membrane Structures in Plasmodium falciparum Infected Erythrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clavijo Carlos A

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available Little is known about the molecular mechanisms underlying the release of merozoites from malaria infected erythrocytes. In this study membranous structures present in the culture medium at the time of merozoite release have been characterized. Biochemical and ultrastructural evidence indicate that membranous structures consist of the infected erythrocyte membrane, the parasitophorous vacuolar membrane and a residual body containing electron dense material. These are subcellular compartments expected in a structure that arises as a consequence of merozoite release from the infected cell. Ultrastructural studies show that a novel structure extends from the former parasite compartment to the surface membrane. Since these membrane modifications are detected only after merozoites have been released from the infected erythrocyte, it is proposed that they might play a role in the release of merozoites from the host cell

  4. Are aortic endograft prostheses fully hemo-compatible? A dielectric spectroscopy investigation of the electrical alterations induced on erythrocyte cell membranes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Basoli, Antonio [Clinica Chirurgica II, Universita di Roma ' La Sapienza' , Rome (Italy); Bordi, Federico [Dipartimento di Fisica, Universita di Roma ' La Sapienza' , Rome (Italy); Cametti, Cesare [Dipartimento di Fisica, Universita di Roma ' La Sapienza' , Rome (Italy); Faraglia, Vittorio [Cattedra di Chirurgia Vascolare, Second School of Medicine, Universita di Roma ' La Sapienza' , Rome (Italy); Gili, Tommaso [Dipartimento di Fisica, Universita di Roma ' La Sapienza' , Rome (Italy); Rizzo, Luigi [Cattedra di Chirurgia Vascolare, Second School of Medicine, Universita di Roma ' La Sapienza' , Rome (Italy); Taurino, Maurizio [Cattedra di Chirurgia Vascolare, Second School of Medicine, Universita di Roma ' La Sapienza' , Rome (Italy)

    2007-03-01

    In this paper we present a new approach directed to ascertain the full hemo-compatibility of aortic endograft prostheses based on the measurement of the passive electrical parameters of the erythrocyte cell membrane. The red blood cell membrane, from an electric point of view, is characterized by an electrical permittivity, {epsilon}{sub s}, which takes into account the structural charged organization of the lipid double layer, and by the electrical conductivity, {sigma}{sub s}, which accounts for the ionic transport processes across the membrane. These parameters can be easily measured by means of a radiowave dielectric spectroscopy technique, analyzing the dependence of the electrical impedance of an erythrocyte suspension on the frequency of the applied electric field. In this preliminary report, we investigate the alterations induced, at a membrane level, by two different devices commonly employed for endovascular abdominal aortic aneurysm exclusion, i.e., Excluder (registered) and Zenith (registered) devices, implanted in ten patients. We observe, in all the cases investigated, a statistically significant increase of both the permittivity {epsilon}{sub s} and electrical conductivity {sigma}{sub s} of the erythrocyte membrane upon the prosthesis implant, this increase being higher than about 20% of the un-treated values. Moreover, these alterations remain roughly unaffected 30 days after surgery. These findings suggest that a complete hemo-compatibility of these prostheses is lacking, even if the observed alterations may not have a clinical relevance.

  5. Studying Membrane Protein Structure and Function Using Nanodiscs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Huda, Pie

    The structure and dynamic of membrane proteins can provide valuable information about general functions, diseases and effects of various drugs. Studying membrane proteins are a challenge as an amphiphilic environment is necessary to stabilise the protein in a functionally and structurally relevant...... lipid bilayer in defined nanometer size, which can act as a stabiliser for membrane proteins. This enables both functional and structural investigation of membrane proteins in a detergent free environment which is closer to the native situation. Understanding the self-assembly of nanodiscs is important...... for understanding the key mechanisms during reconstitution of membrane proteins in these lipoproteins. In this project the self-assembly of nanodiscs has been structurally characterized with small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) in a time resolved fashion. This brought knowledge about the structural...

  6. Alterations in plasma membrane promote overexpression and increase of sodium influx through epithelial sodium channel in hypertensive platelets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerecedo, D; Martínez-Vieyra, Ivette; Sosa-Peinado, Alejandro; Cornejo-Garrido, Jorge; Ordaz-Pichardo, Cynthia; Benítez-Cardoza, Claudia

    2016-08-01

    Platelets are small, anucleated cell fragments that activate in response to a wide variety of stimuli, triggering a complex series of intracellular pathways leading to a hemostatic thrombus formation at vascular injury sites. However, in essential hypertension, platelet activation contributes to causing myocardial infarction and ischemic stroke. Reported abnormalities in platelet functions, such as platelet hyperactivity and hyperaggregability to several agonists, contribute to the pathogenesis and complications of thrombotic events associated with hypertension. Platelet membrane lipid composition and fluidity are determining for protein site accessibility, structural arrangement of platelet surface, and response to appropriate stimuli. The present study aimed to demonstrate whether structural and biochemical abnormalities in lipid membrane composition and fluidity characteristic of platelets from hypertensive patients influence the expression of the Epithelial Sodium Channel (ENaC), fundamental for sodium influx during collagen activation. Wb, cytometry and quantitative Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction (qRT-PCR) assays demonstrated ENaC overexpression in platelets from hypertensive subjects and in relation to control subjects. Additionally, our results strongly suggest a key role of β-dystroglycan as a scaffold for the organization of ENaC and associated proteins. Understanding of the mechanisms of platelet alterations in hypertension should provide valuable information for the pathophysiology of hypertension. PMID:27137675

  7. New membrane structures with proton conducting properties

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgaard, Casper Frydendal

    Perfluorosulfonic acid membranes (e.g. Nafion®) are the most widely applied electrolytes in Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFCs) because of their good chemical stability, mechanical properties and high proton conductivity, when well hydrated. The upper limit of operating temperature for...... [1, 2, 3]. Improved fuel cell performance from incorporation of hygroscopic oxides or solid proton conductors (e.g. zirconium phosphates) has been reported. The poster exhibits upcoming work in the field of composite electrolyte membranes at the University of Southern Denmark, combining radiation...

  8. STRUCTURE AND PROPERTIES OF COMPOSITE POLYURETHANE HOLLOW FIBER MEMBRANES

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xian-feng Li; Chang-fa Xiao

    2005-01-01

    Composite polyurethane (PU)-SiO2 hollow fiber membranes were successfully prepared via optimizing the technique of dry-jet wet spinning, and their pressure-responsibilities were confirmed by the relationships of pure water fluxtransmembrane pressure (PWF-TP) for the first time. The origin for this phenomenon was analyzed on the basis of membrane structure and material characteristics. The effects of SiO2 content on the structure and properties of membrane were investigated. The experimental results indicated that SiO2 in membrane created a great many interfacial micro-voids and played an important role in pressure-responsibility, PWF and rejection of membrane: with the increase of SiO2 content, the ability of membrane recovery weakened, PWF increased, and rejection decreased slightly.

  9. Structural Studies of Membrane-Bound Pyrophosphatases

    OpenAIRE

    Kellosalo, Juho

    2013-01-01

    Membrane-bound pyrophosphatases (M-PPases) catalyze a reaction where the free energy released from pyrophoshate (PPi) hydrolysis is converted into a sodium and/or proton gradient by pumping these ions across the membrane [1]. They are found in plants, protozoans and prokaryotes and are important for survival in abiotic stress conditions such as cold, hypoxia, salt stress and low-light intensity [2, 3][4]. In plants, M-PPases are the main hydrolysers of cytoplasmic pyrophosphate, which source ...

  10. Structure determination of membrane proteins in five easy pieces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marassi, Francesca M; Das, Bibhuti B; Lu, George J; Nothnagel, Henry J; Park, Sang Ho; Son, Woo Sung; Tian, Ye; Opella, Stanley J

    2011-12-01

    Rotational Alignment (RA) solid-state NMR provides the basis for a general method for determining the structures of membrane proteins in phospholipid bilayers under physiological conditions. Membrane proteins are high priority targets for structure determination, and are challenging for existing experimental methods. Because membrane proteins reside in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayer membranes it is important to study them in this type of environment. The RA solid-state NMR approach we have developed can be summarized in five steps, and incorporates methods of molecular biology, biochemistry, sample preparation, the implementation of NMR experiments, and structure calculations. It relies on solid-state NMR spectroscopy to obtain high-resolution spectra and residue-specific structural restraints for membrane proteins that undergo rotational diffusion around the membrane normal, but whose mobility is otherwise restricted by interactions with the membrane phospholipids. High resolution spectra of membrane proteins alone and in complex with other proteins and ligands set the stage for structure determination and functional studies of these proteins in their native, functional environment. PMID:21964394

  11. Impact of bacterial endotoxin on the structure of DMPC membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagel, Michael; Brauckmann, Stephan; Moegle-Hofacker, Franzeska; Effenberger-Neidnicht, Katharina; Hartmann, Matthias; de Groot, Herbert; Mayer, Christian

    2015-10-01

    Bacterial lipopolysaccharides are believed to have a toxic effect on human cell membranes. In this study, the influence of a lipopolysaccharide (LPS) from Escherichia coli on the structure, the dynamics and the mechanical strength of phospholipid membranes are monitored by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) and by atomic force microscopy (AFM). Model membranes are formed from 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DMPC) and are either prepared as multilamellar bulk samples or multilamellar vesicles. Field gradient NMR data directly prove the rapid integration of LPS into DMPC membranes. Solid state NMR experiments primarily detect decreasing molecular order parameters with increasing LPS content. This is accompanied by a mechanical softening of the membrane bilayers as is shown by AFM indentation measurements. Altogether, the data prove that lipopolysaccharide molecules quickly insert into phospholipid bilayers, increase membrane fluctuation amplitudes and significantly weaken their mechanical stiffness. PMID:26071197

  12. The structure of melittin in membranes.

    OpenAIRE

    Vogel, H.; Jähnig, F

    1986-01-01

    The conformation of the polypeptide melittin in lipid membranes as determined by Raman spectroscopy is a bent alpha-helix formed by the mainly hydrophobic residues 1-21, and a nonhelical COOH-terminal segment of the hydrophilic residues 22-26. Fluorescence quenching experiments on residue Trp19 reveal that all COOH-termini are located on that side of a vesicular membrane to which melittin was added. By means of fluorescence energy transfer between unmodified and modified Trp19 residues, melit...

  13. Sandwich-structured hollow fiber membranes for osmotic power generation

    KAUST Repository

    Fu, Feng Jiang

    2015-11-01

    In this work, a novel sandwich-structured hollow fiber membrane has been developed via a specially designed spinneret and optimized spinning conditions. With this specially designed spinneret, the outer layer, which is the most crucial part of the sandwich-structured membrane, is maintained the same as the traditional dual-layer membrane. The inner substrate layer is separated into two layers: (1) an ultra-thin middle layer comprising a high molecular weight polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) additive to enhance integration with the outer polybenzimidazole (PBI) selective layer, and (2) an inner-layer to provide strong mechanical strength for the membrane. Experimental results show that a high water permeability and good mechanical strength could be achieved without the expensive post treatment process to remove PVP which was necessary for the dual-layer pressure retarded osmosis (PRO) membranes. By optimizing the composition, the membrane shows a maximum power density of 6.23W/m2 at a hydraulic pressure of 22.0bar when 1M NaCl and 10mM NaCl are used as the draw and feed solutions, respectively. To our best knowledge, this is the best phase inversion hollow fiber membrane with an outer selective PBI layer for osmotic power generation. In addition, this is the first work that shows how to fabricate sandwich-structured hollow fiber membranes for various applications. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

  14. Functional and structural alterations induced by copper in xanthine oxidase

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Mahnaz Hadizadeh; Ezzatollah Keyhani; Jacqueline Keyhani; Cyrus Khodadadi

    2009-01-01

    Xanthine oxidase (XO),a key enzyme in purine metab-olism,produces reactive oxygen species causing vascu-lar injuries and chronic heart failure.Here,copper's ability to alter XO activity and structure was investi-gated in vitro after pre-incubation of the enzyme with increasing Cu2+ concentrations for various periods of time.The enzymatic activity was measured by following XO-catalyzed xanthine oxidation to uric acid under steady-state kinetics conditions.Structural alterations were assessed by electronic absorption,fluorescence,and circular dichroism spectroscopy.Results showed that Cu2+ either stimulated or inhibited XO activity,depending on metal concentration and pre-incubation length,the latter also determining the inhibition type.Cu2+-XO complex formation was characterized by modifications in XO electronic absorption bands,intrinsic fluorescence,and α-helical and β-sheet content.Apparent dissociation constant values implied high- and low-affinity Cu2+ binding sites in the vicinity of the enzyme's reactive centers.Data indicated that Cu2+ binding to high-affinity sites caused alterations around XO molybdenum and flavin adenine dinucleo-tide centers,changes in secondary structure,and mod-erate activity inhibition;binding to low affinity sites caused alterations around all XO reactive centers including FeS,changes in tertiary structure as reflected by alterations in spectral properties,and drastic activity inhibition.Stimulation was attributed to transient stabilization of XO optimal conformation.Results also emphasized the potential role of copper in the regu-lation of XO activity stemming from its binding properties.

  15. Graphene-based structure, method of suspending graphene membrane, and method of depositing material onto graphene membrane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zettl, Alexander K.; Meyer, Jannik Christian

    2013-04-02

    An embodiment of a method of suspending a graphene membrane across a gap in a support structure includes attaching graphene to a substrate. A pre-fabricated support structure having the gap is attached to the graphene. The graphene and the pre-fabricated support structure are then separated from the substrate which leaves the graphene membrane suspended across the gap in the pre-fabricated support structure. An embodiment of a method of depositing material includes placing a support structure having a graphene membrane suspended across a gap under vacuum. A precursor is adsorbed to a surface of the graphene membrane. A portion of the graphene membrane is exposed to a focused electron beam which deposits a material from the precursor onto the graphene membrane. An embodiment of a graphene-based structure includes a support structure having a gap, a graphene membrane suspended across the gap, and a material deposited in a pattern on the graphene membrane.

  16. Integral membrane protein structure determination using pseudocontact shifts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Obtaining enough experimental restraints can be a limiting factor in the NMR structure determination of larger proteins. This is particularly the case for large assemblies such as membrane proteins that have been solubilized in a membrane-mimicking environment. Whilst in such cases extensive deuteration strategies are regularly utilised with the aim to improve the spectral quality, these schemes often limit the number of NOEs obtainable, making complementary strategies highly beneficial for successful structure elucidation. Recently, lanthanide-induced pseudocontact shifts (PCSs) have been established as a structural tool for globular proteins. Here, we demonstrate that a PCS-based approach can be successfully applied for the structure determination of integral membrane proteins. Using the 7TM α-helical microbial receptor pSRII, we show that PCS-derived restraints from lanthanide binding tags attached to four different positions of the protein facilitate the backbone structure determination when combined with a limited set of NOEs. In contrast, the same set of NOEs fails to determine the correct 3D fold. The latter situation is frequently encountered in polytopical α-helical membrane proteins and a PCS approach is thus suitable even for this particularly challenging class of membrane proteins. The ease of measuring PCSs makes this an attractive route for structure determination of large membrane proteins in general

  17. Integral membrane protein structure determination using pseudocontact shifts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crick, Duncan J.; Wang, Jue X. [University of Cambridge, Department of Biochemistry (United Kingdom); Graham, Bim; Swarbrick, James D. [Monash University, Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (Australia); Mott, Helen R.; Nietlispach, Daniel, E-mail: dn206@cam.ac.uk [University of Cambridge, Department of Biochemistry (United Kingdom)

    2015-04-15

    Obtaining enough experimental restraints can be a limiting factor in the NMR structure determination of larger proteins. This is particularly the case for large assemblies such as membrane proteins that have been solubilized in a membrane-mimicking environment. Whilst in such cases extensive deuteration strategies are regularly utilised with the aim to improve the spectral quality, these schemes often limit the number of NOEs obtainable, making complementary strategies highly beneficial for successful structure elucidation. Recently, lanthanide-induced pseudocontact shifts (PCSs) have been established as a structural tool for globular proteins. Here, we demonstrate that a PCS-based approach can be successfully applied for the structure determination of integral membrane proteins. Using the 7TM α-helical microbial receptor pSRII, we show that PCS-derived restraints from lanthanide binding tags attached to four different positions of the protein facilitate the backbone structure determination when combined with a limited set of NOEs. In contrast, the same set of NOEs fails to determine the correct 3D fold. The latter situation is frequently encountered in polytopical α-helical membrane proteins and a PCS approach is thus suitable even for this particularly challenging class of membrane proteins. The ease of measuring PCSs makes this an attractive route for structure determination of large membrane proteins in general.

  18. 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.

  19. Crystal structure of the plasma membrane proton pump

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Bjørn P.; Buch-Pedersen, Morten Jeppe; Morth, J. Preben;

    2007-01-01

    -3, and Na1,K1-ATPase (the sodium-potassium pump) in animals4. The name P-type derives from the fact that these proteins exploit a phosphorylated reaction cycle intermediate of ATP hydrolysis5.The plasma membrane proton pumps belong to the type III P-type ATPase subfamily, whereas Na1,K1-ATPase and Ca21......A prerequisite for life is the ability to maintain electrochemical imbalances across biomembranes. In all eukaryotes the plasma membrane potential and secondary transport systems are energized by the activity of P-type ATPase membrane proteins: H1-ATPase (the proton pump) in plants and fungi1...... functional unit of ATP-coupled proton transport across the plasma membrane, and the structure is locked in a functional state not previously observed in P-type ATPases. The transmembrane domain reveals a large cavity, which is likely to be filled with water, located near the middle of the membrane plane...

  20. Magnetic apatite for structural insights on the plasma membrane

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The iron oxide-hydroxyapatite (FeOxHA) nanoparticles reported here differ from those reported before by their advantage of homogeneity and simple preparation; moreover, the presence of carboxymethyldextran (CMD), together with hydroxyapatite (HA), allows access to the cellular membrane, which makes our magnetic apatite unique. These nanoparticles combine magnetic behavior, Raman label ability and the property of interaction with the cellular membrane; they therefore represent an interesting material for structural differentiation of the cell membrane. It was observed by Raman spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and fluorescence microscopy that FeOxHA adheres to the plasma membrane and does not penetrate the membrane. These insights make the nanoparticles a promising material for magnetic cell sorting, e.g. in microfluidic device applications. (paper)

  1. Structured microparticles with tailored properties produced by membrane emulsification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vladisavljević, Goran T

    2015-11-01

    This paper provides an overview of membrane emulsification routes for fabrication of structured microparticles with tailored properties for specific applications. Direct (bottom-up) and premix (top-down) membrane emulsification processes are discussed including operational, formulation and membrane factors that control the droplet size and droplet generation regimes. A special emphasis was put on different methods of controlled shear generation on membrane surface, such as cross flow on the membrane surface, swirl flow, forward and backward flow pulsations in the continuous phase and membrane oscillations and rotations. Droplets produced by membrane emulsification can be used for synthesis of particles with versatile morphology (solid and hollow, matrix and core/shell, spherical and non-spherical, porous and coherent, composite and homogeneous), which can be surface functionalised and coated or loaded with macromolecules, nanoparticles, quantum dots, drugs, phase change materials and high molecular weight gases to achieve controlled/targeted drug release and impart special optical, chemical, electrical, acoustic, thermal and magnetic properties. The template emulsions including metal-in-oil, solid-in-oil-in-water, oil-in-oil, multilayer, and Pickering emulsions can be produced with high encapsulation efficiency of encapsulated materials and narrow size distribution and transformed into structured particles using a variety of solidification processes, such as polymerisation (suspension, mini-emulsion, interfacial and in-situ), ionic gelation, chemical crosslinking, melt solidification, internal phase separation, layer-by-layer electrostatic deposition, particle self-assembly, complex coacervation, spray drying, sol-gel processing, and molecular imprinting. Particles fabricated from droplets produced by membrane emulsification include nanoclusters, colloidosomes, carbon aerogel particles, nanoshells, polymeric (molecularly imprinted, hypercrosslinked, Janus and core

  2. Crystal structure of the plasma membrane proton pump.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedersen, Bjørn P; Buch-Pedersen, Morten J; Morth, J Preben; Palmgren, Michael G; Nissen, Poul

    2007-12-13

    A prerequisite for life is the ability to maintain electrochemical imbalances across biomembranes. In all eukaryotes the plasma membrane potential and secondary transport systems are energized by the activity of P-type ATPase membrane proteins: H+-ATPase (the proton pump) in plants and fungi, and Na+,K+-ATPase (the sodium-potassium pump) in animals. The name P-type derives from the fact that these proteins exploit a phosphorylated reaction cycle intermediate of ATP hydrolysis. The plasma membrane proton pumps belong to the type III P-type ATPase subfamily, whereas Na+,K+-ATPase and Ca2+-ATPase are type II. Electron microscopy has revealed the overall shape of proton pumps, however, an atomic structure has been lacking. Here we present the first structure of a P-type proton pump determined by X-ray crystallography. Ten transmembrane helices and three cytoplasmic domains define the functional unit of ATP-coupled proton transport across the plasma membrane, and the structure is locked in a functional state not previously observed in P-type ATPases. The transmembrane domain reveals a large cavity, which is likely to be filled with water, located near the middle of the membrane plane where it is lined by conserved hydrophilic and charged residues. Proton transport against a high membrane potential is readily explained by this structural arrangement. PMID:18075595

  3. Local Reasoning about Programs that Alter Data Structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    O'Hearn, Peter W.; Reynolds, John Clifton; Yang, Hongseok

    2001-01-01

    We describe an extension of Hoare's logic for reasoning about programs that alter data structures. We consider a low-level storage model based on a heap with associated lookup, update, allocation and deallocation operations, and unrestricted address arithmetic. The assertion language is based....... Through these and a number of examples we show that the formalism supports local reasoning: A speci-cation and proof can concentrate on only those cells in memory that a program accesses. This paper builds on earlier work by Burstall, Reynolds, Ishtiaq and O'Hearn on reasoning about data structures....

  4. Sphingomyelinase D activity in model membranes: structural effects of in situ generation of ceramide-1-phosphate.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto P Stock

    Full Text Available The toxicity of Loxosceles spider venom has been attributed to a rare enzyme, sphingomyelinase D, which transforms sphingomyelin to ceramide-1-phosphate. The bases of its inflammatory and dermonecrotic activity, however, remain unclear. In this work the effects of ceramide-1-phosphate on model membranes were studied both by in situ generation of this lipid using a recombinant sphingomyelinase D from the spider Loxosceles laeta and by pre-mixing it with sphingomyelin and cholesterol. The systems of choice were large unilamellar vesicles for bulk studies (enzyme kinetics, fluorescence spectroscopy and dynamic light scattering and giant unilamellar vesicles for fluorescence microscopy examination using a variety of fluorescent probes. The influence of membrane lateral structure on the kinetics of enzyme activity and the consequences of enzyme activity on the structure of target membranes containing sphingomyelin were examined. The findings indicate that: 1 ceramide-1-phosphate (particularly lauroyl ceramide-1-phosphate can be incorporated into sphingomyelin bilayers in a concentration-dependent manner and generates coexistence of liquid disordered/solid ordered domains, 2 the activity of sphingomyelinase D is clearly influenced by the supramolecular organization of its substrate in membranes and, 3 in situ ceramide-1-phosphate generation by enzymatic activity profoundly alters the lateral structure and morphology of the target membranes.

  5. Membrane transport mechanism 3D structure and beyond

    CERN Document Server

    Ziegler, Christine

    2014-01-01

    This book provides a molecular view of membrane transport by means of numerous biochemical and biophysical techniques. The rapidly growing number of atomic structures of transporters in different conformations and the constant progress in bioinformatics have recently added deeper insights.   The unifying mechanism of energized solute transport across membranes is assumed to consist of the conformational cycling of a carrier protein to provide access to substrate binding sites from either side of a cellular membrane. Due to the central role of active membrane transport there is considerable interest in deciphering the principles of one of the most fundamental processes in nature: the alternating access mechanism.   This book brings together particularly significant structure-function studies on a variety of carrier systems from different transporter families: Glutamate symporters, LeuT-like fold transporters, MFS transporters and SMR (RND) exporters, as well as ABC-type importers.   The selected examples im...

  6. Ternary structure reveals mechanism of a membrane diacylglycerol kinase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Dianfan; Stansfeld, Phillip J.; Sansom, Mark S. P.; Keogh, Aaron; Vogeley, Lutz; Howe, Nicole; Lyons, Joseph A.; Aragao, David; Fromme, Petra; Fromme, Raimund; Basu, Shibom; Grotjohann, Ingo; Kupitz, Christopher; Rendek, Kimberley; Weierstall, Uwe; Zatsepin, Nadia A.; Cherezov, Vadim; Liu, Wei; Bandaru, Sateesh; English, Niall J.; Gati, Cornelius; Barty, Anton; Yefanov, Oleksandr; Chapman, Henry N.; Diederichs, Kay; Messerschmidt, Marc; Boutet, Sébastien; Williams, Garth J.; Marvin Seibert, M.; Caffrey, Martin

    2015-12-01

    Diacylglycerol kinase catalyses the ATP-dependent conversion of diacylglycerol to phosphatidic acid in the plasma membrane of Escherichia coli. The small size of this integral membrane trimer, which has 121 residues per subunit, means that available protein must be used economically to craft three catalytic and substrate-binding sites centred about the membrane/cytosol interface. How nature has accomplished this extraordinary feat is revealed here in a crystal structure of the kinase captured as a ternary complex with bound lipid substrate and an ATP analogue. Residues, identified as essential for activity by mutagenesis, decorate the active site and are rationalized by the ternary structure. The γ-phosphate of the ATP analogue is positioned for direct transfer to the primary hydroxyl of the lipid whose acyl chain is in the membrane. A catalytic mechanism for this unique enzyme is proposed. The active site architecture shows clear evidence of having arisen by convergent evolution.

  7. Preterm birth and structural brain alterations in early adulthood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiara Nosarti

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Alterations in cortical development and impaired neurodevelopmental outcomes have been described following very preterm (VPT birth in childhood and adolescence, but only a few studies to date have investigated grey matter (GM and white matter (WM maturation in VPT samples in early adult life. Using voxel-based morphometry (VBM we studied regional GM and WM volumes in 68 VPT-born individuals (mean gestational age 30 weeks and 43 term-born controls aged 19–20 years, and their association with cognitive outcomes (Hayling Sentence Completion Test, Controlled Oral Word Association Test, Visual Reproduction test of the Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised and gestational age. Structural MRI data were obtained with a 1.5 Tesla system and analysed using the VBM8 toolbox in SPM8 with a customized study-specific template. Similarly to results obtained at adolescent assessment, VPT young adults compared to controls demonstrated reduced GM volume in temporal, frontal, insular and occipital areas, thalamus, caudate nucleus and putamen. Increases in GM volume were noted in medial/anterior frontal gyrus. Smaller subcortical WM volume in the VPT group was observed in temporal, parietal and frontal regions, and in a cluster centred on posterior corpus callosum/thalamus/fornix. Larger subcortical WM volume was found predominantly in posterior brain regions, in areas beneath the parahippocampal and occipital gyri and in cerebellum. Gestational age was associated with GM and WM volumes in areas where VPT individuals demonstrated GM and WM volumetric alterations, especially in temporal, parietal and occipital regions. VPT participants scored lower than controls on measures of IQ, executive function and non-verbal memory. When investigating GM and WM alterations and cognitive outcome scores, subcortical WM volume in an area beneath the left inferior frontal gyrus accounted for 14% of the variance of full-scale IQ (F = 12.9, p < 0.0001. WM volume in posterior corpus

  8. Infrared spectroscopic study of photoreceptor membrane and purple membrane. Protein secondary structure and hydrogen deuterium exchange

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Infrared spectroscopy in the interval from 1800 to 1300 cm-1 has been used to investigate the secondary structure and the hydrogen/deuterium exchange behavior of bacteriorhodopsin and bovine rhodopsin in their respective native membranes. The amide I' and amide II' regions from spectra of membrane suspensions in D2O were decomposed into constituent bands by use of a curve-fitting procedure. The amide I' bands could be fit with a minimum of three theoretical components having peak positions at 1664, 1638, and 1625 cm-1 for bacteriorhodopsin and 1657, 1639, and 1625 cm-1 for rhodopsin. For both of these membrane proteins, the amide I' spectrum suggests that alpha-helix is the predominant form of peptide chain secondary structure, but that a substantial amount of beta-sheet conformation is present as well. The shape of the amide I' band was pH-sensitive for photoreceptor membranes, but not for purple membrane, indicating that membrane-bound rhodopsin undergoes a conformation change at acidic pH. Peptide hydrogen exchange of bacteriorhodopsin and rhodopsin was monitored by observing the change in the ratio of integrated absorbance (Aamide II'/Aamide I') during the interval from 1.5 to 25 h after membranes were introduced into buffered D2O. The fraction of peptide groups in a very slowly exchanging secondary structure was estimated to be 0.71 for bacteriorhodopsin at pD 7. The corresponding fraction in vertebrate rhodopsin was estimated to be less than or equal to 0.60. These findings are discussed in relationship to previous studies of hydrogen exchange behavior and to structural models for both proteins

  9. Prolonged agonist stimulation does not alter the protein composition of membrane domains in spite of dramatic changes induced in a specific signaling cascade.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matousek, Petr; Novotny, Jirí; Rudajev, Vladimír; Svoboda, Petr

    2005-01-01

    Protein composition of membrane domains prepared by three different procedures (mechanical homogenization, alkaline treatment with 1 M Na2CO3 [pH 11.0], or extraction with nonionic detergent Triton X-100), and isolated from the bulk of plasma membranes by flotation on equilibrium sucrose density gradients, was analyzed by two-dimensional (2D) electrophoresis and compared in preparations from control (quiescent) and agonist-stimulated human embryonic kidney cells (HEK)293 or S49 cells. HEK293 cells (clone e2m11) stably expressing high levels of thyrotropin-releasing hormone receptor and G11alpha protein were stimulated by thyrotropin-releasing hormone and S49 lymphoma cells by the beta-adrenergic receptor agonist isoprenaline. Whereas sustained exposure (16 h) of both cell lines to the appropriate hormones led to substantial cellular redistribution and downregulation of the cognate G proteins (G(q)alpha/G11alpha and G(s)alpha, respectively), the distribution and levels of nonstimulated G(i) proteins remained unchanged. The 2D electrophoretic analysis of membrane domains distinguished approx 150-170 major proteins in these structures and none of these proteins was significantly altered by prolonged agonist stimulation. Furthermore, specific immunochemical determination of a number of plasma membrane markers, including transmembrane and glycosyl-phosphatidylinositol-anchored peripheral proteins, confirmed that their detergent-extractability/solubility was not influenced by hormone treatment. Collectively, our present data indicate that sustained hormone stimulation of target cells does not alter the basic protein composition of membrane domain/raft compartments of the plasma membrane in spite of marked changes proceeding in a given signaling cascade. PMID:15673926

  10. Structural differences between thermophilic and mesophilic membrane proteins

    OpenAIRE

    Meruelo, Alejandro D.; Han, Seong Kyu; Kim, Sanguk; Bowie, James U.

    2012-01-01

    The evolutionary adaptations of thermophilic water-soluble proteins required for maintaining stability at high temperature have been extensively investigated. Little is known about the adaptations in membrane proteins, however. Here, we compare many properties of mesophilic and thermophilic membrane protein structures, including side-chain burial, packing, hydrogen bonding, transmembrane kinks, loop lengths, hydrophobicity, and other sequence features. Most of these properties are quite simil...

  11. Sphingomyelinase D activity in model membranes: structural effects of in situ generation of ceramide-1-phosphate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stock, Roberto; Brewer, Jonathan R.; Wagner, Kerstin;

    2012-01-01

    The toxicity of Loxosceles spider venom has been attributed to a rare enzyme, sphingomyelinase D, which transforms sphingomyelin to ceramide-1-phosphate. The bases of its inflammatory and dermonecrotic activity, however, remain unclear. In this work the effects of ceramide-1-phosphate on model...... membranes were studied both by in situ generation of this lipid using a recombinant sphingomyelinase D from the spider Loxosceles laeta and by pre-mixing it with sphingomyelin and cholesterol. The systems of choice were large unilamellar vesicles for bulk studies (enzyme kinetics, fluorescence spectroscopy...... of sphingomyelinase D is clearly influenced by the supramolecular organization of its substrate in membranes and, 3) in situ ceramide-1-phosphate generation by enzymatic activity profoundly alters the lateral structure and morphology of the target membranes....

  12. Use of reverse micelles in membrane protein structural biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Membrane protein structural biology is a rapidly developing field with fundamental importance for elucidating key biological and biophysical processes including signal transduction, intercellular communication, and cellular transport. In addition to the intrinsic interest in this area of research, structural studies of membrane proteins have direct significance on the development of therapeutics that impact human health in diverse and important ways. In this article we demonstrate the potential of investigating the structure of membrane proteins using the reverse micelle forming surfactant dioctyl sulfosuccinate (AOT) in application to the prototypical model ion channel gramicidin A. Reverse micelles are surfactant based nanoparticles which have been employed to investigate fundamental physical properties of biomolecules. The results of this solution NMR based study indicate that the AOT reverse micelle system is capable of refolding and stabilizing relatively high concentrations of the native conformation of gramicidin A. Importantly, pulsed-field-gradient NMR diffusion and NOESY experiments reveal stable gramicidin A homodimer interactions that bridge reverse micelle particles. The spectroscopic benefit of reverse micelle-membrane protein solubilization is also explored, and significant enhancement over commonly used micelle based mimetic systems is demonstrated. These results establish the effectiveness of reverse micelle based studies of membrane proteins, and illustrate that membrane proteins solubilized by reverse micelles are compatible with high resolution solution NMR techniques

  13. Use of reverse micelles in membrane protein structural biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Van Horn, Wade D. [Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Department of Biochemistry and Center for Structural Biology (United States); Ogilvie, Mark E.; Flynn, Peter F. [University of Utah, Department of Chemistry (United States)], E-mail: peter.flynn@utah.edu

    2008-03-15

    Membrane protein structural biology is a rapidly developing field with fundamental importance for elucidating key biological and biophysical processes including signal transduction, intercellular communication, and cellular transport. In addition to the intrinsic interest in this area of research, structural studies of membrane proteins have direct significance on the development of therapeutics that impact human health in diverse and important ways. In this article we demonstrate the potential of investigating the structure of membrane proteins using the reverse micelle forming surfactant dioctyl sulfosuccinate (AOT) in application to the prototypical model ion channel gramicidin A. Reverse micelles are surfactant based nanoparticles which have been employed to investigate fundamental physical properties of biomolecules. The results of this solution NMR based study indicate that the AOT reverse micelle system is capable of refolding and stabilizing relatively high concentrations of the native conformation of gramicidin A. Importantly, pulsed-field-gradient NMR diffusion and NOESY experiments reveal stable gramicidin A homodimer interactions that bridge reverse micelle particles. The spectroscopic benefit of reverse micelle-membrane protein solubilization is also explored, and significant enhancement over commonly used micelle based mimetic systems is demonstrated. These results establish the effectiveness of reverse micelle based studies of membrane proteins, and illustrate that membrane proteins solubilized by reverse micelles are compatible with high resolution solution NMR techniques.

  14. Finite Element Analysis of Wrinkled Membrane Structures for Sunshield Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, John D.; Brodeur, Stephen J. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The deployable sunshield is an example of a gossamer structure envisioned for use on future space telescopes. The basic structure consists of multiple layers of pretensioned, thin-film membranes supported by deployable booms. The prediction and verification of sunshield dynamics has been identified as an area in need of technology development due to the difficulties inherent in predicting nonlinear structural behavior of the membranes and because of the challenges involved. in ground testing of the full-scale structure. This paper describes a finite element analysis of a subscale sunshield that has been subjected to ground testing in support of the Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST) program. The analysis utilizes a nonlinear material model that accounts for wrinkling of the membranes. Results are presented from a nonlinear static preloading analysis and subsequent dynamics analyses to illustrate baseline sunshield structural characteristics. Studies are then described which provide further insight into the effect of membrane. preload on sunshield dynamics and the performance of different membrane modeling techniques. Lastly, a comparison of analytical predictions and ground test results is presented.

  15. Membrane proteins structure and dynamics by nuclear magnetic resonance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maltsev, Sergey; Lorigan, Gary A

    2011-10-01

    Membrane proteins represent a challenging class of biological systems to study. They are extremely difficult to crystallize and in most cases they retain their structure and functions only in membrane environments. Therefore, commonly used diffraction methods fail to give detailed molecular structure and other approaches have to be utilized to obtain biologically relevant information. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, however, can provide powerful structural and dynamical constraints on these complicated systems. Solution- and solid-state NMR are powerful methods for investigating membrane proteins studies. In this work, we briefly review both solution and solid-state NMR techniques for membrane protein studies and illustrate the applications of these methods to elucidate proteins structure, conformation, topology, dynamics, and function. Recent advances in electronics, biological sample preparation, and spectral processing provided opportunities for complex biological systems, such as membrane proteins inside lipid vesicles, to be studied faster and with outstanding quality. New analysis methods therefore have emerged, that benefit from the combination of sample preparation and corresponding specific high-end NMR techniques, which give access to more structural and dynamic information. PMID:23733702

  16. Discovery of novel membrane binding structures and functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kufareva, Irina; Lenoir, Marc; Dancea, Felician; Sridhar, Pooja; Raush, Eugene; Bissig, Christin; Gruenberg, Jean; Abagyan, Ruben; Overduin, Michael

    2014-12-01

    The function of a protein is determined by its intrinsic activity in the context of its subcellular distribution. Membranes localize proteins within cellular compartments and govern their specific activities. Discovering such membrane-protein interactions is important for understanding biological mechanisms and could uncover novel sites for therapeutic intervention. We present a method for detecting membrane interactive proteins and their exposed residues that insert into lipid bilayers. Although the development process involved analysis of how C1b, C2, ENTH, FYVE, Gla, pleckstrin homology (PH), and PX domains bind membranes, the resulting membrane optimal docking area (MODA) method yields predictions for a given protein of known three-dimensional structures without referring to canonical membrane-targeting modules. This approach was tested on the Arf1 GTPase, ATF2 acetyltransferase, von Willebrand factor A3 domain, and Neisseria gonorrhoeae MsrB protein and further refined with membrane interactive and non-interactive FAPP1 and PKD1 pleckstrin homology domains, respectively. Furthermore we demonstrate how this tool can be used to discover unprecedented membrane binding functions as illustrated by the Bro1 domain of Alix, which was revealed to recognize lysobisphosphatidic acid (LBPA). Validation of novel membrane-protein interactions relies on other techniques such as nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), which was used here to map the sites of micelle interaction. Together this indicates that genome-wide identification of known and novel membrane interactive proteins and sites is now feasible and provides a new tool for functional annotation of the proteome. PMID:25394204

  17. Effect of Melatonin and Cholesterol on the Structure of DOPC and DPPC Membranes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Drolle, E [University of Waterloo, Canada; Kucerka, Norbert [Canadian Neutron Beam Centre and Comelius University (Slovakia); Hoopes, M I [University of Waterloo, Canada; Choi, Y [University of Waterloo, Canada; Katsaras, John [ORNL; Karttunen, M [University of Waterloo, Canada; Leonenko, Z [University of Waterloo, Canada

    2013-01-01

    The cell membrane plays an important role in the molecular mechanism of amyloid toxicity associated with Alzheimer's disease. The membrane's chemical composition and the incorporation of small molecules, such as melatonin and cholesterol, can alter its structure and physical properties, thereby affecting its interaction with amyloid peptides. Both melatonin and cholesterol have been recently linked to amyloid toxicity. Melatonin has been shown to have a protective role against amyloid toxicity. However, the underlying molecular mechanism of this protection is still not well understood, and cholesterol's role remains controversial. We used small-angle neutron diffraction (SAND) from oriented lipid multi-layers, small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) from unilamellar vesicles experiments andMolecular Dynamics (MD) simulations to elucidate non-specific interactions of melatonin and cholesterol with 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DOPC) and 1,2-dipalmitoyl-snglycero-3-phosphocholine (DPPC) model membranes. We conclude that melatonin decreases the thickness of both model membranes by disordering the lipid hydrocarbon chains, thus increasing membrane fluidity. This result is in stark contrast to the much accepted ordering effect induced by cholesterol, which causes membranes to thicken.

  18. The Prediction of Membrane Protein Structure and Genome Structural Annotation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rita Casadio

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available New methods, essentially based on hidden Markov models (HMM and neural networks (NN, can predict the topography of both β-barrel and all-α membrane proteins with high accuracy and a low rate of false positives and false negatives. These methods have been integrated in a suite of programs to filter proteomes of Gram-negative bacteria, searching for new membrane proteins.

  19. Mechanism of biological denitrification inhibition: procyanidins induce an allosteric transition of the membrane-bound nitrate reductase through membrane alteration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bardon, Clément; Poly, Franck; Piola, Florence; Pancton, Muriel; Comte, Gilles; Meiffren, Guillaume; Haichar, Feth El Zahar

    2016-05-01

    Recently, it has been shown that procyanidins fromFallopiaspp. inhibit bacterial denitrification, a phenomenon called biological denitrification inhibition (BDI). However, the mechanisms involved in such a process remain unknown. Here, we investigate the mechanisms of BDI involving procyanidins, using the model strainPseudomonas brassicacearumNFM 421. The aerobic and anaerobic (denitrification) respiration, cell permeability and cell viability ofP. brassicacearumwere determined as a function of procyanidin concentration. The effect of procyanidins on the bacterial membrane was observed using transmission electronic microscopy. Bacterial growth, denitrification, NO3- and NO2-reductase activity, and the expression of subunits of NO3- (encoded by the genenarG) and NO2-reductase (encoded by the genenirS) under NO3or NO2were measured with and without procyanidins. Procyanidins inhibited the denitrification process without affecting aerobic respiration at low concentrations. Procyanidins also disturbed cell membranes without affecting cell viability. They specifically inhibited NO3- but not NO2-reductase.Pseudomonas brassicacearumresponded to procyanidins by over-expression of the membrane-bound NO3-reductase subunit (encoded by the genenarG). Our results suggest that procyanidins can specifically inhibit membrane-bound NO3-reductase inducing enzymatic conformational changes through membrane disturbance and thatP. brassicacearumresponds by over-expressing membrane-bound NO3-reductase. Our results lead the way to a better understanding of BDI. PMID:26906096

  20. Structure and Dynamic Properties of Membrane Proteins using NMR

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rösner, Heike; Kragelund, Birthe

    2012-01-01

    conformational changes. Their structural and functional decoding is challenging and has imposed demanding experimental development. Solution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is one of the techniques providing the capacity to make a significant difference in the deciphering of the membrane protein......Integral membrane proteins are one of the most challenging groups of macromolecules despite their apparent conformational simplicity. They manage and drive transport, circulate information, and participate in cellular movements via interactions with other proteins and through intricate...... structure-function paradigm. The method has evolved dramatically during the last decade resulting in a plethora of new experiments leading to a significant increase in the scientific repertoire for studying membrane proteins. Besides solving the three-dimensional structures using state-of-the-art approaches...

  1. Overcoming bottlenecks in the membrane protein structural biology pipeline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardy, David; Bill, Roslyn M; Jawhari, Anass; Rothnie, Alice J

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins account for a third of the eukaryotic proteome, but are greatly under-represented in the Protein Data Bank. Unfortunately, recent technological advances in X-ray crystallography and EM cannot account for the poor solubility and stability of membrane protein samples. A limitation of conventional detergent-based methods is that detergent molecules destabilize membrane proteins, leading to their aggregation. The use of orthologues, mutants and fusion tags has helped improve protein stability, but at the expense of not working with the sequence of interest. Novel detergents such as glucose neopentyl glycol (GNG), maltose neopentyl glycol (MNG) and calixarene-based detergents can improve protein stability without compromising their solubilizing properties. Styrene maleic acid lipid particles (SMALPs) focus on retaining the native lipid bilayer of a membrane protein during purification and biophysical analysis. Overcoming bottlenecks in the membrane protein structural biology pipeline, primarily by maintaining protein stability, will facilitate the elucidation of many more membrane protein structures in the near future. PMID:27284049

  2. Disease-associated mutations that alter the RNA structural ensemble.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Halvorsen

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Genome-wide association studies (GWAS often identify disease-associated mutations in intergenic and non-coding regions of the genome. Given the high percentage of the human genome that is transcribed, we postulate that for some observed associations the disease phenotype is caused by a structural rearrangement in a regulatory region of the RNA transcript. To identify such mutations, we have performed a genome-wide analysis of all known disease-associated Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs from the Human Gene Mutation Database (HGMD that map to the untranslated regions (UTRs of a gene. Rather than using minimum free energy approaches (e.g. mFold, we use a partition function calculation that takes into consideration the ensemble of possible RNA conformations for a given sequence. We identified in the human genome disease-associated SNPs that significantly alter the global conformation of the UTR to which they map. For six disease-states (Hyperferritinemia Cataract Syndrome, beta-Thalassemia, Cartilage-Hair Hypoplasia, Retinoblastoma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD, and Hypertension, we identified multiple SNPs in UTRs that alter the mRNA structural ensemble of the associated genes. Using a Boltzmann sampling procedure for sub-optimal RNA structures, we are able to characterize and visualize the nature of the conformational changes induced by the disease-associated mutations in the structural ensemble. We observe in several cases (specifically the 5' UTRs of FTL and RB1 SNP-induced conformational changes analogous to those observed in bacterial regulatory Riboswitches when specific ligands bind. We propose that the UTR and SNP combinations we identify constitute a "RiboSNitch," that is a regulatory RNA in which a specific SNP has a structural consequence that results in a disease phenotype. Our SNPfold algorithm can help identify RiboSNitches by leveraging GWAS data and an analysis of the mRNA structural ensemble.

  3. Class I Cytokine Receptors: Structure and function in the Membrane

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bugge, Katrine Østergaard

    of structural knowledge on their membrane-embedded transmembrane domains (TMDs), which connect the extracellular ligand binding domains to the intracellular signaling platforms. The overall aim of this thesis work was to improve our understanding of the class I cytokine receptor signaling across the membrane...... bilayer via structural characterizations of TMD representatives. To enable structural studies of these domains, an organic-extraction based strategy for efficient production of isotope-labeled TMDs with or without short intrinsically disordered regions was developed. This strategy successfully provided...... ample material of high quality for structural studies with NMR spectroscopy of several class I cytokine receptor TMDs. Furthermore, the structure of a class I cytokine receptor TMD in DHPC micelles was solved with solution-state NMR spectroscopy. Additionally, since structural studies of intact proteins...

  4. Altered Escherichia coli membrane protein assembly machinery allows proper membrane assembly of eukaryotic protein vitamin K epoxide reductase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatahet, Feras; Blazyk, Jessica L.; Martineau, Eugenie; Mandela, Eric; Zhao, Yongxin; Campbell, Robert E.; Beckwith, Jonathan; Boyd, Dana

    2015-01-01

    Functional overexpression of polytopic membrane proteins, particularly when in a foreign host, is often a challenging task. Factors that negatively affect such processes are poorly understood. Using the mammalian membrane protein vitamin K epoxide reductase (VKORc1) as a reporter, we describe a genetic selection approach allowing the isolation of Escherichia coli mutants capable of functionally expressing this blood-coagulation enzyme. The isolated mutants map to components of membrane protein assembly and quality control proteins YidC and HslV. We show that changes in the VKORc1 sequence and in the YidC hydrophilic groove along with the inactivation of HslV promote VKORc1 activity and dramatically increase its expression level. We hypothesize that such changes correct for mismatches in the membrane topogenic signals between E. coli and eukaryotic cells guiding proper membrane integration. Furthermore, the obtained mutants allow the study of VKORc1 reaction mechanisms, inhibition by warfarin, and the high-throughput screening for potential anticoagulants. PMID:26598701

  5. Pantothenate kinase-associated neurodegeneration: altered mitochondria membrane potential and defective respiration in Pank2 knock-out mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brunetti, Dario; Dusi, Sabrina; Morbin, Michela; Uggetti, Andrea; Moda, Fabio; D'Amato, Ilaria; Giordano, Carla; d'Amati, Giulia; Cozzi, Anna; Levi, Sonia; Hayflick, Susan; Tiranti, Valeria

    2012-12-15

    Neurodegeneration with brain iron accumulation (NBIA) comprises a group of neurodegenerative disorders characterized by high brain content of iron and presence of axonal spheroids. Mutations in the PANK2 gene, which encodes pantothenate kinase 2, underlie an autosomal recessive inborn error of coenzyme A metabolism, called pantothenate kinase-associated neurodegeneration (PKAN). PKAN is characterized by dystonia, dysarthria, rigidity and pigmentary retinal degeneration. The pathogenesis of this disorder is poorly understood and, although PANK2 is a mitochondrial protein, perturbations in mitochondrial bioenergetics have not been reported. A knock-out (KO) mouse model of PKAN exhibits retinal degeneration and azoospermia, but lacks any neurological phenotype. The absence of a clinical phenotype has partially been explained by the different cellular localization of the human and murine PANK2 proteins. Here we demonstrate that the mouse Pank2 protein localizes to mitochondria, similar to its human orthologue. Moreover, we show that Pank2-defective neurons derived from KO mice have an altered mitochondrial membrane potential, a defect further corroborated by the observations of swollen mitochondria at the ultra-structural level and by the presence of defective respiration. PMID:22983956

  6. FATE OF REVERSE OSMOSIS (RO) MEMBRANES DURING OXIDATION BY DISINFECTANTS USED IN WATER TREATMENT: IMPACT ON MEMBRANE STRUCTURE AND PERFORMANCES

    KAUST Repository

    Maugin, Thomas

    2013-12-01

    Providing pretreatment prior RO filtration is essential to avoid biofouling and subsequent loss of membrane performances. Chlorine is known to degrade polymeric membrane, improving or reducing membrane efficiency depending on oxidation conditions. This study aimed to assess the impact of alternative disinfectant, NH2Cl, as well as secondary oxidants formed during chloramination of seawater, e.g. HOBr, HOI, or used in water treatment e.g. ClO2, O3, on membrane structure and performances. Permeability, total and specific rejection (Cl-, SO4 2-, Br-, Boron), FTIR profile, elemental composition were analyzed. Results showed that each oxidant seems to react differently with the membrane. HOCl, HOBr, ClO2 and O3 improved membrane permeability but decreased rejection in different extent. In comparison, chloramines resulted in identical trends but oxidized membrane very slowly. On the contrary, iodine improved membrane rejection e.g. boron, but decreased permeability. Reaction conducted with chlorine, bromine, iodine and chloramines resulted in the incorporation of halogen in the membrane structure. All oxidant except iodine were able to break amide bonds of the membrane structure in our condition. In addition, chloramine seemed to react with membrane differently, involving a potential addition of nitrogen. Chloramination of seawater amplified membrane performances evolutions due to generation of bromochloramine. Moreover, chloramines reacted both with NOM and membrane during oxidation in natural seawater, leading to additional rejection drop.

  7. Membrane tubule formation by banana-shaped proteins with or without transient network structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noguchi, Hiroshi

    2016-02-01

    In living cells, membrane morphology is regulated by various proteins. Many membrane reshaping proteins contain a Bin/Amphiphysin/Rvs (BAR) domain, which consists of a banana-shaped rod. The BAR domain bends the biomembrane along the rod axis and the features of this anisotropic bending have recently been studied. Here, we report on the role of the BAR protein rods in inducing membrane tubulation, using large-scale coarse-grained simulations. We reveal that a small spontaneous side curvature perpendicular to the rod can drastically alter the tubulation dynamics at high protein density, whereas no significant difference is obtained at low density. A percolated network is intermediately formed depending on the side curvature. This network suppresses tubule protrusion, leading to the slow formation of fewer tubules. Thus, the side curvature, which is generated by protein-protein and membrane-protein interactions, plays a significant role in tubulation dynamics. We also find that positive surface tensions and the vesicle membrane curvature can stabilize this network structure by suppressing the tubulation.

  8. Amelioration of altered antioxidant status and membrane linked functions by vanadium and Trigonella in alloxan diabetic rat brains

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Mohammad Rizwan Siddiqui; Asia Taha; K Moorthy; Mohd Ejaz Hussain; S F Basir; Najma Zaheer Baquer

    2005-09-01

    Trigonella foenum graecum seed powder (TSP) and sodium orthovanadate (SOV) have been reported to have antidiabetic effects. However, SOV exerts hypoglycemic effects at relatively high doses with several toxic effects. We used low doses of vanadate in combination with TSP and evaluated their antidiabetic effects on antioxidant enzymes and membrane-linked functions in diabetic rat brains. In rats, diabetes was induced by alloxan monohydrate (15 mg/100 g body wt.) and they were treated with 2 IU insulin, 0.6 mg/ml SOV, 5% TSP and a combination of 0.2 mg/ml SOV with 5% TSP for 21 days. Blood glucose levels, activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), Na+/K+ ATPase, membrane lipid peroxidation and fluidity were determined in different fractions of whole brain after 21 days of treatment. Diabetic rats showed high blood glucose ( < 0.001), decreased activities of SOD, catalase and Na+/K+ ATPase ( < 0.01, < 0.001 and < 0.01), increased levels of GPx and MDA ( < 0.01 and < 0.001) and decreased membrane fluidity ( < 0.01). Treatment with different antidiabetic compounds restored the above-altered parameters. Combined dose of Trigonella and vanadate was found to be the most effective treatment in normalizing these alterations. Lower doses of vanadate could be used in combination with TSP to effectively counter diabetic alterations without any toxic effects.

  9. Structural brain alterations associated with dyslexia predate reading onset.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raschle, Nora Maria; Chang, Maria; Gaab, Nadine

    2011-08-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging studies have reported reduced activation in parietotemporal and occipitotemporal areas in adults and children with developmental dyslexia compared to controls during reading and reading related tasks. These patterns of regionally reduced activation have been linked to behavioral impairments of reading-related processes (e.g., phonological skills and rapid automatized naming). The observed functional and behavioral differences in individuals with developmental dyslexia have been complemented by reports of reduced gray matter in left parietotemporal, occipitotemporal areas, fusiform and lingual gyrus and the cerebellum. An important question for education is whether these neural differences are present before reading is taught. Developmental dyslexia can only be diagnosed after formal reading education starts. However, here we investigate whether the previously detected gray matter alterations in adults and children with developmental dyslexia can already be observed in a small group of pre-reading children with a family-history of developmental dyslexia compared to age and IQ-matched children without a family-history (N = 20/mean age: 5:9 years; age range 5:1-6:5 years). Voxel-based morphometry revealed significantly reduced gray matter volume indices for pre-reading children with, compared to children without, a family-history of developmental dyslexia in left occipitotemporal, bilateral parietotemporal regions, left fusiform gyrus and right lingual gyrus. Gray matter volume indices in left hemispheric occipitotemporal and parietotemporal regions of interest also correlated positively with rapid automatized naming. No differences between the two groups were observed in frontal and cerebellar regions. This discovery in a small group of children suggests that previously described functional and structural alterations in developmental dyslexia may not be due to experience-dependent brain changes but may be present at birth or

  10. Altered adipocyte structure and function in nutritionally programmed microswine offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DuPriest, E A; Kupfer, P; Lin, B; Sekiguchi, K; Morgan, T K; Saunders, K E; Chatkupt, T T; Denisenko, O N; Purnell, J Q; Bagby, S P

    2012-06-01

    Adipose tissue (AT) dysfunction links obesity of any cause with cardiometabolic disease, but whether early-life nutritional deficiency can program adipocyte dysfunction independently of obesity is untested. In 3-5-month-old juvenile microswine offspring exposed to isocaloric perinatal maternal protein restriction (MPR) and exhibiting accelerated prepubertal fat accrual without obesity, we assessed markers of acquired obesity: adiponectin and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) levels and adipocyte size in intra-abdominal (ABD-AT) and subcutaneous (SC-AT) adipose tissues. Plasma cortisol, leptin and insulin levels were measured in fetal, neonatal and juvenile offspring. In juvenile low-protein offspring (LPO), adipocyte size in ABD-AT was reduced 22% (P = 0.011 v. controls), whereas adipocyte size in SC-AT was increased in female LPO (P = 0.05) and normal in male LPO; yet, adiponectin mRNA in LPO was low in both sexes and in both depots (P programming of adipocyte size and gene expression and subtly altered glucose homeostasis. Reduced adiponectin mRNA and adipokine dysregulation in juvenile LPO following accelerated growth occurred independently of obesity, adipocyte hypertrophy or inflammatory markers; thus, perinatal MPR and/or growth acceleration can alter adipocyte structure and disturb adipokine homeostasis in metabolically adverse patterns predictive of enhanced disease risk. PMID:25102010

  11. Alterations in Fibrin Structure in Patients with Liver Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisman, Ton; Ariëns, Robert A S

    2016-06-01

    The hemostatic balance in patients with liver diseases is relatively well preserved due to concomitant alterations in pro- and antihemostatic pathways. Thrombin generation studies support the notion of hemostatic competence in liver diseases, but in such tests alterations in fibrinogen level and function are not taken into account. We have recently studied structural and functional properties of the fibrin clot in patients with liver diseases. Although we have confirmed previous findings that hypersialylation of the fibrinogen molecule in patients with liver diseases contributes to a defective fibrinogen-to-fibrin conversion, we have found that once the clot has been formed, it has a thrombogenic nature as assessed by permeability assays. These thrombogenic properties of the fibrin clot in cirrhosis relate to incompletely characterized intrinsic changes in the fibrinogen molecule, which may include oxidation and hypersialylation. In addition, in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease thrombogenic properties of the fibrin clot are not only due to liver disease but also to obesity and the metabolic syndrome. During liver transplantation, the clot normalizes and becomes increasingly permeable, and the functional properties of the fibrin clot are markedly normalized by fibrinogen concentrate, when added to plasma samples in vitro. These new insights in the functional properties of the fibrin clot in patients with liver diseases facilitate a more rational approach to treatment and prevention of both bleeding and thrombotic complications. PMID:27071046

  12. Structural changes of the thylakoid membrane network induced by high light stress in plant chloroplasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirchhoff, Helmut

    2014-04-19

    Land plants live in a challenging environment dominated by unpredictable changes. A particular problem is fluctuation in sunlight intensity that can cause irreversible damage of components of the photosynthetic apparatus in thylakoid membranes under high light conditions. Although a battery of photoprotective mechanisms minimize damage, photoinhibition of the photosystem II (PSII) complex occurs. Plants have evolved a multi-step PSII repair cycle that allows efficient recovery from photooxidative PSII damage. An important feature of the repair cycle is its subcompartmentalization to stacked grana thylakoids and unstacked thylakoid regions. Thus, understanding the crosstalk between stacked and unstacked thylakoid membranes is essential to understand the PSII repair cycle. This review summarizes recent progress in our understanding of high-light-induced structural changes of the thylakoid membrane system and correlates these changes to the efficiency of the PSII repair cycle. The role of reversible protein phosphorylation for structural alterations is discussed. It turns out that dynamic changes in thylakoid membrane architecture triggered by high light exposure are central for efficient repair of PSII. PMID:24591712

  13. Structure and dynamics of model membranes by advanced NMR spectroscopy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The molecular conformation and dynamics of phospholipids have important implications for the detailed understanding of membrane function, fluidity, composition and protein-lipid interaction. The advanced nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) methods used in the study of structure and dynamics of model membranes are reviewed. Conformational exchange of the lipid headgroup as well as segmental order can be measured using dipolar couplings between the nuclei 31 P - 1 H, 13 C - 1 H, 1 H - 1 H and 31 P - 13 C by a novel solid-state two-dimensional (2D) NMR technique. Self-diffusion of lipids and water in lipid bilayers measured by sensitive NMR method of fringe field of superconducting magnet as well as 2D deuterium exchange NMR spectroscopy are presented. The powerful method of 2D NOESY in establishing the intermolecular interaction between an antineoplastic drug (daunomycin) and a model membrane is discussed. (authors)

  14. Tethered and Polymer Supported Bilayer Lipid Membranes: Structure and Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jakob Andersson

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Solid supported bilayer lipid membranes are model systems to mimic natural cell membranes in order to understand structural and functional properties of such systems. The use of a model system allows for the use of a wide variety of analytical tools including atomic force microscopy, impedance spectroscopy, neutron reflectometry, and surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy. Among the large number of different types of model membranes polymer-supported and tethered lipid bilayers have been shown to be versatile and useful systems. Both systems consist of a lipid bilayer, which is de-coupled from an underlying support by a spacer cushion. Both systems will be reviewed, with an emphasis on the effect that the spacer moiety has on the bilayer properties.

  15. Importance of Membrane Structural Integrity for RPE65 Retinoid Isomerization Activity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Golczak, Marcin; Kiser, Philip D.; Lodowski, David T.; Maeda, Akiko; Palczewski, Krzysztof (Case Western)

    2010-04-05

    Regeneration of visual chromophore in the vertebrate visual cycle involves the retinal pigment epithelium-specific protein RPE65, the key enzyme catalyzing the cleavage and isomerization of all-trans-retinyl fatty acid esters to 11-cis-retinol. Although RPE65 has no predicted membrane spanning domains, this protein predominantly associates with microsomal fractions isolated from bovine retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). We have re-examined the nature of RPE65 interactions with native microsomal membranes by using extraction and phase separation experiments. We observe that hydrophobic interactions are the dominant forces that promote RPE65 association with these membranes. These results are consistent with the crystallographic model of RPE65, which features a large lipophilic surface that surrounds the entrance to the catalytic site of this enzyme and likely interacts with the hydrophobic core of the endoplasmic reticulum membrane. Moreover, we report a critical role for phospholipid membranes in preserving the retinoid isomerization activity and physical properties of RPE65. Isomerase activity measured in bovine RPE was highly sensitive to phospholipase A{sup 2} treatment, but the observed decline in 11-cis-retinol production did not directly reflect inhibition by products of lipid hydrolysis. Instead, a direct correlation between the kinetics of phospholipid hydrolysis and retinoid isomerization suggests that the lipid membrane structure is critical for RPE65 enzymatic activity. We also provide evidence that RPE65 operates in a multiprotein complex with retinol dehydrogenase 5 and retinal G protein-coupled receptor in RPE microsomes. Modifications in the phospholipid environment affecting interactions with these protein components may be responsible for the alterations in retinoid metabolism observed in phospholipid-depleted RPE microsomes. Thus, our results indicate that the enzymatic activity of native RPE65 strongly depends on its membrane binding and

  16. Ion induced changes in the structure of bordered pit membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinkee eLee

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Xylem hydraulic resistance varies with ion concentration in sap solution. It is assumed that this variation in resistance results from hydrogel like properties of pectins located in bordered pit membranes separating adjacent vessels. Although kinetics of the resistance change suggests swelling/deswelling behavior of the pectins, there is no direct evidence of this activity. In this report we provide evidence of structural changes in bordered pit membranes responding to variation in ionic concentration of solute around it using atomic force microscopy (AFM. AFM revealed bordered pit membranes as relatively smooth, soft and lacking any sharp edges surface when submerged in de-ionized water, in contrast to pictures from scanning electron microscope (SEM or AFM performed on air dry material. Exposure of the bordered pit membranes to 50 mM KCl solution resulted in significant changes in both surface physical properties with and elevation features as bordered pit membrane became harder, with visible edges of fibers and collapsed, while no change in porosity was observed. Analysis suggests a need for a major shift in our understanding to the physical bases of variable xylem resistance from change in porosity to change in pathway length. Findings support the role of actuating properties of hybrid hydrogel-cellulose materials in water redistribution and embolism resistance.

  17. Loss of Drp1 function alters OPA1 processing and changes mitochondrial membrane organization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    RNAi mediated loss of Drp1 function changes mitochondrial morphology in cultured HeLa and HUVEC cells by shifting the balance of mitochondrial fission and fusion towards unopposed fusion. Over time, inhibition of Drp1 expression results in the formation of a highly branched mitochondrial network along with 'bulge'-like structures. These changes in mitochondrial morphology are accompanied by a reduction in levels of Mitofusin 1 (Mfn1) and 2 (Mfn2) and a modified proteolytic processing of OPA1 isoforms, resulting in the inhibition of cell proliferation. In addition, our data imply that bulge formation is driven by Mfn1 action along with particular proteolytic short-OPA1 (s-OPA1) variants: Loss of Mfn2 in the absence of Drp1 results in an increase of Mfn1 levels along with processed s-OPA1-isoforms, thereby enhancing continuous 'fusion' and bulge formation. Moreover, bulge formation might reflect s-OPA1 mitochondrial membrane remodeling activity, resulting in the compartmentalization of cytochrome c deposits. The proteins Yme1L and PHB2 appeared not associated with the observed enhanced OPA1 proteolysis upon RNAi of Drp1, suggesting the existence of other OPA1 processing controlling proteins. Taken together, Drp1 appears to affect the activity of the mitochondrial fusion machinery by unbalancing the protein levels of mitofusins and OPA1.

  18. Lipid membrane partitioning of lysolipids and fatty acids: Effects of membrane phase structure and detergent chain length

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Høyrup, Lise Pernille Kristine; Davidsen, Jesper; Jørgensen, Kent

    2001-01-01

    detergents. The calorimetric results reveal that the membrane partitioning of lysolipids depends strongly on the phase structure of the lipid membrane. This is manifested as a lysolipid partition coefficient, K, that is much larger for fluid-phase lipid membranes as compared to gel-phase lipid membranes...... magnitude higher when the saturated acyl chain of the detergents increases by two carbon atoms. The obtained partition coefficients are of importance in relation to a deeper understanding of the interplay between global aqueous and local membrane concentrations of the detergents and the functional influence...

  19. Altered PLP1 splicing causes hypomyelination of early myelinating structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kevelam, Sietske H; Taube, Jennifer R; van Spaendonk, Rosalina M L; Bertini, Enrico; Sperle, Karen; Tarnopolsky, Mark; Tonduti, Davide; Valente, Enza Maria; Travaglini, Lorena; Sistermans, Erik A; Bernard, Geneviève; Catsman-Berrevoets, Coriene E; van Karnebeek, Clara D M; Østergaard, John R; Friederich, Richard L; Fawzi Elsaid, Mahmoud; Schieving, Jolanda H; Tarailo-Graovac, Maja; Orcesi, Simona; Steenweg, Marjan E; van Berkel, Carola G M; Waisfisz, Quinten; Abbink, Truus E M; van der Knaap, Marjo S; Hobson, Grace M; Wolf, Nicole I

    2015-01-01

    Objective The objective of this study was to investigate the genetic etiology of the X-linked disorder “Hypomyelination of Early Myelinating Structures” (HEMS). Methods We included 16 patients from 10 families diagnosed with HEMS by brain MRI criteria. Exome sequencing was used to search for causal mutations. In silico analysis of effects of the mutations on splicing and RNA folding was performed. In vitro gene splicing was examined in RNA from patients’ fibroblasts and an immortalized immature oligodendrocyte cell line after transfection with mutant minigene splicing constructs. Results All patients had unusual hemizygous mutations of PLP1 located in exon 3B (one deletion, one missense and two silent), which is spliced out in isoform DM20, or in intron 3 (five mutations). The deletion led to truncation of PLP1, but not DM20. Four mutations were predicted to affect PLP1/DM20 alternative splicing by creating exonic splicing silencer motifs or new splice donor sites or by affecting the local RNA structure of the PLP1 splice donor site. Four deep intronic mutations were predicted to destabilize a long-distance interaction structure in the secondary PLP1 RNA fragment involved in regulating PLP1/DM20 alternative splicing. Splicing studies in fibroblasts and transfected cells confirmed a decreased PLP1/DM20 ratio. Interpretation Brain structures that normally myelinate early are poorly myelinated in HEMS, while they are the best myelinated structures in Pelizaeus–Merzbacher disease, also caused by PLP1 alterations. Our data extend the phenotypic spectrum of PLP1-related disorders indicating that normal PLP1/DM20 alternative splicing is essential for early myelination and support the need to include intron 3 in diagnostic sequencing. PMID:26125040

  20. Addition of electrophilic lipids to actin alters filament structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pathophysiological processes associated with oxidative stress lead to the generation of reactive lipid species. Among them, lipids bearing unsaturated aldehyde or ketone moieties can form covalent adducts with cysteine residues and modulate protein function. Through proteomic techniques we have identified actin as a target for the addition of biotinylated analogs of the cyclopentenone prostaglandins 15-deoxy-Δ12,14-PGJ2 (15d-PGJ2) and PGA1 in NIH-3T3 fibroblasts. This modification could take place in vitro and mapped to the protein C-terminal end. Other electrophilic lipids, like the isoprostane 8-iso-PGA1 and 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal, also bound to actin. The C-terminal region of actin is important for monomer-monomer interactions and polymerization. Electron microscopy showed that actin treated with 15d-PGJ2 or 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal formed filaments which were less abundant and displayed shorter length and altered structure. Streptavidin-gold staining allowed mapping of biotinylated 15d-PGJ2 at sites of filament disruption. These results shed light on the structural implications of actin modification by lipid electrophiles

  1. Membrane binding of Escherichia coli RNase E catalytic domain stabilizes protein structure and increases RNA substrate affinity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murashko, Oleg N; Kaberdin, Vladimir R; Lin-Chao, Sue

    2012-05-01

    RNase E plays an essential role in RNA processing and decay and tethers to the cytoplasmic membrane in Escherichia coli; however, the function of this membrane-protein interaction has remained unclear. Here, we establish a mechanistic role for the RNase E-membrane interaction. The reconstituted highly conserved N-terminal fragment of RNase E (NRne, residues 1-499) binds specifically to anionic phospholipids through electrostatic interactions. The membrane-binding specificity of NRne was confirmed using circular dichroism difference spectroscopy; the dissociation constant (K(d)) for NRne binding to anionic liposomes was 298 nM. E. coli RNase G and RNase E/G homologs from phylogenetically distant Aquifex aeolicus, Haemophilus influenzae Rd, and Synechocystis sp. were found to be membrane-binding proteins. Electrostatic potentials of NRne and its homologs were found to be conserved, highly positive, and spread over a large surface area encompassing four putative membrane-binding regions identified in the "large" domain (amino acids 1-400, consisting of the RNase H, S1, 5'-sensor, and DNase I subdomains) of E. coli NRne. In vitro cleavage assay using liposome-free and liposome-bound NRne and RNA substrates BR13 and GGG-RNAI showed that NRne membrane binding altered its enzymatic activity. Circular dichroism spectroscopy showed no obvious thermotropic structural changes in membrane-bound NRne between 10 and 60 °C, and membrane-bound NRne retained its normal cleavage activity after cooling. Thus, NRne membrane binding induced changes in secondary protein structure and enzymatic activation by stabilizing the protein-folding state and increasing its binding affinity for its substrate. Our results demonstrate that RNase E-membrane interaction enhances the rate of RNA processing and decay. PMID:22509045

  2. Selective carboxyl methylation of structurally altered calmodulins in Xenopus oocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The eucaryotic protein carboxyl methyltransferase specifically modifies atypical D-aspartyl and L-isoaspartyl residues which are generated spontaneously as proteins age. The selectivity of the enzyme for altered proteins in intact cells was explored by co-injecting Xenopus laevis oocytes with S-adenosyl-L-[methyl-3H]methionine and structurally altered calmodulins generated during a 14-day preincubation in vitro. Control experiments indicated that the oocyte protein carboxyl methyltransferase was not saturated with endogenous substrates, since protein carboxyl methylation rates could be stimulated up to 8-fold by increasing concentrations of injected calmodulin. The oocyte protein carboxyl methyltransferase showed strong selectivities for bovine brain and bacterially synthesized calmodulins which had been preincubated in the presence of 1 mM EDTA relative to calmodulins which had been preincubated with 1 mM CaCl2. Radioactive methyl groups were incorporated into base-stable linkages with recombinant calmodulin as well as into carboxyl methyl esters following its microinjection into oocytes. This base-stable radioactivity most likely represents the trimethylation of lysine 115, a highly conserved post-translational modification which is present in bovine and Xenopus but not in bacterially synthesized calmodulin. Endogenous oocyte calmodulin incorporates radioactivity into both carboxyl methyl esters and into base-stable linkages following microinjection of oocytes with S-adenosyl-[methyl-3H]methionine alone. The rate of oocyte calmodulin carboxyl methylation in injected oocytes is calculated to be similar to that of lysine 115 trimethylation, suggesting that the rate of calmodulin carboxyl methylation is similar to that of calmodulin synthesis. At steady state, oocyte calmodulin contains approximately 0.0002 esters/mol of protein, which turn over rapidly

  3. NMR studies of human blood cells in health and disease. I. Alterations of the plasma membrane water permeability of erythrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alterations in pathological cases of the human erythrocyte membrane water permeability were investigated by using a Mn2+-doping 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) technique. The temperature dependence of the apparent water diffusional exchange through erythrocyte membranes in chronic hepatitis, diabetes, dyslipidemia and essential hypertension was measured and compared to healthy controls. Using moderate manganese concentrations (9-18 mM) and Carr-Purcell-Meiboom-Gill pulse sequences with a large number of refocusing π pulses and short interpulse delay (100 μs) our values of the water exchange times (τe) across erythrocyte membranes, obtained within a 10 min time period following the moment of doping, were independent of the actual manganese concentration and the Arrhenius plot for water exchange was linear over the range of 22-42 deg C. A marked increase of the water exchange times values was observed in all studied disease states. In case of chronic hepatitis, diabetes and dyslipidemia the changes observed in transmembrane water exchange time were associated with significant increase in the apparent activation energy of the diffusional water permeability thus, pointing out alterations in the function of the erythrocyte water channel. (author)

  4. Axon Membrane Skeleton Structure is Optimized for Coordinated Sodium Propagation

    CERN Document Server

    Zhang, Yihao; Li, He; Tzingounis, Anastasios V; Lykotrafitis, George

    2016-01-01

    Axons transmit action potentials with high fidelity and minimal jitter. This unique capability is likely the result of the spatiotemporal arrangement of sodium channels along the axon. Super-resolution microscopy recently revealed that the axon membrane skeleton is structured as a series of actin rings connected by spectrin filaments that are held under entropic tension. Sodium channels also exhibit a periodic distribution pattern, as they bind to ankyrin G, which associates with spectrin. Here, we elucidate the relationship between the axon membrane skeleton structure and the function of the axon. By combining cytoskeletal dynamics and continuum diffusion modeling, we show that spectrin filaments under tension minimize the thermal fluctuations of sodium channels and prevent overlap of neighboring channel trajectories. Importantly, this axon skeletal arrangement allows for a highly reproducible band-like activation of sodium channels leading to coordinated sodium propagation along the axon.

  5. Solution NMR Structure of Membrane-Integral Diacylglycerol Kinase

    OpenAIRE

    Van Horn, Wade D.; Kim, Hak-Jun; Ellis, Charles D.; Hadziselimovic, Arina; Sulistijo, Endah S.; Karra, Murthy D.; Tian, Changlin; Sönnichsen, Frank D.; Sanders, Charles R.

    2009-01-01

    Escherichia coli diacylglycerol kinase (DAGK) represents a family of integral membrane enzymes that is unrelated to all other phosphotransferases. We have determined the three-dimensional structure of the DAGK homotrimer using solution NMR. The third transmembrane helix from each subunit is domain-swapped with the first and second transmembrane segments from an adjacent subunit. Each of DAGK’s three active sites resembles a portico. The cornice of the portico appears to be the determinant of ...

  6. The structure of alteration layers on cast glass surfaces

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alteration layers developed on SRL-165 simulated waste glasses in dilute sodium silicate/bicarbonate leaching solutions have been examined by Secondary Ionization Mass Spectroscopy (SIMS) using fine-scale, multiple-element depth profiling. Selected samples were examined with an imaging detector system, which demonstrated the horizontal homogeneity of the layer development at all depths within the layer. After 1 day of reaction at 90 degrees C the reaction layer shows depletion of glass elements to a depth of 0.2 μm. The surface of the layer in contact with the solution shows enrichment of Si, Al, and alkali elements even at this short reaction time, suggesting the early stages of development of secondary aluminosilicate phases. With increased reaction time, the layer thickens to about 1.3 μm at 91 days, while the evidence for aluminosilicate development at the surface of the layer becomes more prominent. Penetration of hydrogen into the ''unreacted'' glass proceeds to a depth of about 0.5 μm deeper than the alkali depletion zone. This suggests the mechanism of initial reaction of the glass is by attack of the silicate structure by molecular water or hydroxide ion rather than by alkali-hydrogen ion exchange. The simple structure of the layers developed in the silicate solution is in contrast to the complexity of layer structure found when glasses are reacted in deionized water. Since the conditions for geologic disposal will be closer to those used in the silicate leaching experiments, these results hold promise for the ability to model the system to predict long-term performance after disposal in a repository

  7. Structural, chemical surface and transport modifications of regenerated cellulose dense membranes due to low-dose {gamma}-radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vazquez, M.I. [Grupo de Caracterizacion Electrocinetica en Membranas e Interfases, Departamento de Fisica Aplicada I, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Malaga, E-29071 Malaga (Spain); Heredia-Guerrero, J.A., E-mail: jose.alejandro@icmse.csic.es [Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Sevilla, Centro Mixto CSIC-Universidad de Sevilla, Avda, Americo Vespuccio 49, 41092 Sevilla (Spain); Galan, P. [Grupo de Caracterizacion Electrocinetica en Membranas e Interfases, Departamento de Fisica Aplicada I, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Malaga, E-29071 Malaga (Spain); Benitez, J.J. [Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Sevilla, Centro Mixto CSIC-Universidad de Sevilla, Avda, Americo Vespuccio 49, 41092 Sevilla (Spain); Benavente, J. [Grupo de Caracterizacion Electrocinetica en Membranas e Interfases, Departamento de Fisica Aplicada I, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Malaga, E-29071 Malaga (Spain)

    2011-04-15

    Research highlights: {yields} Low dose {gamma}-radiation causes slight structural, chemical and morphological changes on regenerated cellulose films. {yields} Induced structural changes increase the fragility of irradiated films. {yields} Structural modifications reduce ion permeability of films. - Abstract: Modifications caused in commercial dense regenerated cellulose (RC) flat membranes by low-dose {gamma}-irradiation (average photons energy of 1.23 MeV) are studied. Slight structural, chemical and morphological surface changes due to irradiation in three films with different RC content were determined by ATR-FTIR, XRD, XPS and AFM. Also, the alteration of their mechanical elasticity has been studied. Modification of membrane performance was determined from solute diffusion coefficient and effective membrane fixed charge concentration obtained from NaCl diffusion measurements. Induced structural changes defining new and effective fracture propagation directions are considered to be responsible for the increase of fragility of irradiated RC membranes. The same structural changes are proposed to explain the reduction of the membrane ion permeability through a mechanism involving either ion pathways elongation and/or blocking.

  8. Structural, chemical surface and transport modifications of regenerated cellulose dense membranes due to low-dose γ-radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Research highlights: → Low dose γ-radiation causes slight structural, chemical and morphological changes on regenerated cellulose films. → Induced structural changes increase the fragility of irradiated films. → Structural modifications reduce ion permeability of films. - Abstract: Modifications caused in commercial dense regenerated cellulose (RC) flat membranes by low-dose γ-irradiation (average photons energy of 1.23 MeV) are studied. Slight structural, chemical and morphological surface changes due to irradiation in three films with different RC content were determined by ATR-FTIR, XRD, XPS and AFM. Also, the alteration of their mechanical elasticity has been studied. Modification of membrane performance was determined from solute diffusion coefficient and effective membrane fixed charge concentration obtained from NaCl diffusion measurements. Induced structural changes defining new and effective fracture propagation directions are considered to be responsible for the increase of fragility of irradiated RC membranes. The same structural changes are proposed to explain the reduction of the membrane ion permeability through a mechanism involving either ion pathways elongation and/or blocking.

  9. Structural Basis for Alginate Secretion Across the Bacterial Outer Membrane

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    J Whitney; I Hay; C Li; P Eckford; H Robinson; M Amaya; L Wood; D Ohman; C Bear; et al.

    2011-12-31

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the predominant pathogen associated with chronic lung infection among cystic fibrosis patients. During colonization of the lung, P. aeruginosa converts to a mucoid phenotype characterized by the overproduction of the exopolysaccharide alginate. Secretion of newly synthesized alginate across the outer membrane is believed to occur through the outer membrane protein AlgE. Here we report the 2.3 {angstrom} crystal structure of AlgE, which reveals a monomeric 18-stranded {beta}-barrel characterized by a highly electropositive pore constriction formed by an arginine-rich conduit that likely acts as a selectivity filter for the negatively charged alginate polymer. Interestingly, the pore constriction is occluded on either side by extracellular loop L2 and an unusually long periplasmic loop, T8. In halide efflux assays, deletion of loop T8 ({Delta}T8-AlgE) resulted in a threefold increase in anion flux compared to the wild-type or {Delta}L2-AlgE supporting the idea that AlgE forms a transport pathway through the membrane and suggesting that transport is regulated by T8. This model is further supported by in vivo experiments showing that complementation of an algE deletion mutant with {Delta}T8-AlgE impairs alginate production. Taken together, these studies support a mechanism for exopolysaccharide export across the outer membrane that is distinct from the Wza-mediated translocation observed in canonical capsular polysaccharide export systems.

  10. Structural basis for alginate secretion across the bacterial outer membrane

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whitney, J.C.; Robinson, H.; Hay, I. D.; Li, C.; Eckford, P. D. W.; Amaya, M. F.; Wood, L. F.; Ohman, D. E.; Bear, C. E.; Rehm, B. H.; Howell, P. L.

    2011-08-09

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the predominant pathogen associated with chronic lung infection among cystic fibrosis patients. During colonization of the lung, P. aeruginosa converts to a mucoid phenotype characterized by the overproduction of the exopolysaccharide alginate. Secretion of newly synthesized alginate across the outer membrane is believed to occur through the outer membrane protein AlgE. Here we report the 2.3 {angstrom} crystal structure of AlgE, which reveals a monomeric 18-stranded {beta}-barrel characterized by a highly electropositive pore constriction formed by an arginine-rich conduit that likely acts as a selectivity filter for the negatively charged alginate polymer. Interestingly, the pore constriction is occluded on either side by extracellular loop L2 and an unusually long periplasmic loop, T8. In halide efflux assays, deletion of loop T8 ({Delta}T8-AlgE) resulted in a threefold increase in anion flux compared to the wild-type or {Delta}L2-AlgE supporting the idea that AlgE forms a transport pathway through the membrane and suggesting that transport is regulated by T8. This model is further supported by in vivo experiments showing that complementation of an algE deletion mutant with {Delta}T8-AlgE impairs alginate production. Taken together, these studies support a mechanism for exopolysaccharide export across the outer membrane that is distinct from the Wza-mediated translocation observed in canonical capsular polysaccharide export systems.

  11. Structural and dynamical insights into the membrane-bound α-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neha Jain

    Full Text Available Membrane-induced disorder-to-helix transition of α-synuclein, a presynaptic protein, has been implicated in a number of important neuronal functions as well as in the etiology of Parkinson's disease. In order to obtain structural insights of membrane-bound α-synuclein at the residue-specific resolution, we took advantage of the fact that the protein is devoid of tryptophan and incorporated single tryptophan at various residue positions along the sequence. These tryptophans were used as site-specific markers to characterize the structural and dynamical aspects of α-synuclein on the negatively charged small unilamellar lipid vesicles. An array of site-specific fluorescence readouts, such as the spectral-shift, quenching efficiency and anisotropy, allowed us to discern various features of the conformational rearrangements occurring at different locations of α-synuclein on the lipid membrane. In order to define the spatial localization of various regions of the protein near the membrane surface, we utilized a unique and sensitive indicator, namely, red-edge excitation shift (REES, which originates when a fluorophore is located in a highly ordered micro-environment. The extent of REES observed at different residue positions allowed us to directly identify the residues that are localized at the membrane-water interface comprising a thin (∼ 15 Å layer of motionally restrained water molecules and enabled us to construct a dynamic hydration map of the protein. The combination of site-specific fluorescence readouts allowed us to unravel the intriguing molecular details of α-synuclein on the lipid membrane in a direct model-free fashion. Additionally, the combination of methodologies described here are capable of distinguishing subtle but important structural alterations of α-synuclein bound to different negatively charged lipids with varied head-group chemistry. We believe that the structural modulations of α-synuclein on the membrane could

  12. Solution NMR Structure of Membrane-Integral Diacylglycerol Kinase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Horn, Wade D.; Kim, Hak-Jun; Ellis, Charles D.; Hadziselimovic, Arina; Sulistijo, Endah S.; Karra, Murthy D.; Tian, Changlin; Sönnichsen, Frank D.; Sanders, Charles R.

    2009-01-01

    Escherichia coli diacylglycerol kinase (DAGK) represents a family of integral membrane enzymes that is unrelated to all other phosphotransferases. We have determined the three-dimensional structure of the DAGK homotrimer using solution NMR. The third transmembrane helix from each subunit is domain-swapped with the first and second transmembrane segments from an adjacent subunit. Each of DAGK’s three active sites resembles a portico. The cornice of the portico appears to be the determinant of DAGK’s lipid substrate specificity and overhangs the site of phosphoryl transfer near the water-membrane interface. Mutations to cysteine that caused severe misfolding were located in or near the active site, indicating a high degree of overlap between sites responsible for folding and for catalysis. PMID:19556511

  13. 18 CFR 1304.209 - Land-based structures/alterations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 18 Conservation of Power and Water Resources 2 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Land-based structures... APPROVAL OF CONSTRUCTION IN THE TENNESSEE RIVER SYSTEM AND REGULATION OF STRUCTURES AND OTHER ALTERATIONS TVA-Owned Residential Access Shoreland § 1304.209 Land-based structures/alterations. (a) Except...

  14. Zinc ions and alkaline pH alter the phosphorylation state of human erythrocyte membrane proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Since the phosphorylation state of the red cell membrane proteins in vitro is likely to be regulated by phosphorylation and dephosphorylation, this research was carried out to investigate the possible role of membrane-bound phosphatase activities. These studies were conducted with red blood cell ghosts and IOVs from normal individuals and from an individual with hereditary spherocytosis. In vitro phosphorylation with (γ-32P) ATP was conducted in the presence and the absence of Zn++, or erythrocyte ghosts and IOVs were pretreated for 30 minutes at 37 degree C and pH 7-11 in the presence and the absence of calf intestine alkaline phosphatase. The resulting phosphoproteins were analyzed by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, stained with Coomassie blue, and fluorographed. In the presence of Zn++, the red blood ghosts, with or without pretreatment, demonstrated enhanced phosphorylation of membrane proteins, including band 4.2. Preincubation at pH 10 in the presence of absence of exogenous phosphatase further stimulates phosphorylation of these proteins. Under similar conditions, the erythrocyte membranes also demonstrated the ability to hydrolyze p-nitrophenyl phosphate and to remove 32P from red blood cell phosphoproteins

  15. Rapid temperature adaptation in trout: Alterations in membrane molecular species metabolism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Williams, E.E.; Hazel, J.R. (Arizona State Univ., Tempe (United States))

    1991-03-11

    The ability of poikilotherms to change their membrane phospholipid composition in response to long term temperature change is well documented. Less understood are the changes which occur when rapid temperature fluctuations are encountered. The authors have followed the fate of 16:0/18:1 phosphatidylcholine (PC), radiocarbon labeled at the 18:1 acyl chain, in the plasma membranes of trout hepatocytes. After isolation by PC, 5%-10% of which was taken up into the plasma membranes. The cells were then divided into two groups and either held at acclimation temperature or transferred to 5C. After 1 hour at 20C or 5 hours at 5C the plasma membranes were isolated, the lipids extracted, and the PC fraction was resolved into its molecular species. The distribution of radiolabel between the warm and cold exposed cells was then determined. In both groups radioactivity was found in molecular species other than 16:0/18:1, however no radioactivity was found in lipids other than PC. Cold exposed cells contained less radioactivity in 18:2/18:2, 20:1/22:6, 16:0/18:2 and 18:0/18:1 PC than the warm cells, but contained more in 18:1/18:1 PC. These results indicate that the environmental temperature influences the rates of in situ desaturation, chain elongation, and intermolecular acyl chain regroupings. Subtle changes in molecular species metabolism might be important early steps in temperature acclimation.

  16. Are altered pHi and membrane potential in hu MDR 1 transfectants sufficient to cause MDR protein-mediated multidrug resistance?

    OpenAIRE

    1996-01-01

    Multidrug resistance (MDR) mediated by overexpression of the MDR protein (P-glycoprotein) has been associated with intracellular alkalinization, membrane depolarization, and other cellular alterations. However, virtually all MDR cell lines studied in detail have been created via protocols that involve growth on chemotherapeutic drugs, which can alter cells in many ways. Thus it is not clear which phenotypic alterations are explicitly due to MDR protein overexpression alone. To more precisely ...

  17. Chemical crosslinking and mass spectrometry studies of the structure and dynamics of membrane proteins and receptors.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Haskins, William E.; Leavell, Michael D.; Lane, Pamela; Jacobsen, Richard B.; Hong, Joohee; Ayson, Marites J.; Wood, Nichole L.; Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Kruppa, Gary Hermann; Sale, Kenneth L.; Young, Malin M.; Novak, Petr

    2005-03-01

    Membrane proteins make up a diverse and important subset of proteins for which structural information is limited. In this study, chemical cross-linking and mass spectrometry were used to explore the structure of the G-protein-coupled photoreceptor bovine rhodopsin in the dark-state conformation. All experiments were performed in rod outer segment membranes using amino acid 'handles' in the native protein sequence and thus minimizing perturbations to the native protein structure. Cysteine and lysine residues were covalently cross-linked using commercially available reagents with a range of linker arm lengths. Following chemical digestion of cross-linked protein, cross-linked peptides were identified by accurate mass measurement using liquid chromatography-fourier transform mass spectrometry and an automated data analysis pipeline. Assignments were confirmed and, if necessary, resolved, by tandem MS. The relative reactivity of lysine residues participating in cross-links was evaluated by labeling with NHS-esters. A distinct pattern of cross-link formation within the C-terminal domain, and between loop I and the C-terminal domain, emerged. Theoretical distances based on cross-linking were compared to inter-atomic distances determined from the energy-minimized X-ray crystal structure and Monte Carlo conformational search procedures. In general, the observed cross-links can be explained by re-positioning participating side-chains without significantly altering backbone structure. One exception, between C3 16 and K325, requires backbone motion to bring the reactive atoms into sufficient proximity for cross-linking. Evidence from other studies suggests that residues around K325 for a region of high backbone mobility. These findings show that cross-linking studies can provide insight into the structural dynamics of membrane proteins in their native environment.

  18. Structural changes in plasma membranes prepared from irradiated Chinese hamster V79 cells as revealed by Raman spectroscopy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The effect of gamma irradiation on the integrity of plasma membranes isolated from Chinese hamster V79 cells was investigated by Raman spectroscopy. Plasma membranes of control V79 cells show transitions between -10 and 5 degree C (low-temperature transition), 10 and 22 degree C (middle-temperature transition), and 32 and 40 degree C (high-temperature transition). Irradiation (5 Gy) alters these transitions markedly. First, the low-temperature transition shifts to higher temperature (onset and completion temperatures 4 and 14 degree C). Second, the middle-temperature transition shifts up to the range of about 20-32 degree C, but the width remains unchanged. Third, the higher temperature transition broadens markedly and shifts to the range of about 15-40 degree C. Protein secondary structure as determined by least-squares analysis of the amide I bands shows 36% total helix, 55% total beta-strand, and 9% turn plus undefined for control plasma membrane proteins. Plasma membrane proteins of irradiated V79 cells show an increase in total helix (40 and 45% at 5 and 10 Gy, respectively) and a decrease in the total beta-strand (48 and 44% at 5 and 10 Gy, respectively) structures. The qualitative analysis of the Raman features of plasma membranes and model compounds in the 1600 cm-1 region, assigned to tyrosine groups, revealed that irradiation alters the microenvironment of these groups. We conclude that the radiation dose used in the survival range of Chinese hamster V79 cells can cause damage to plasma membrane proteins without detectable lipid peroxidation, and that the altered proteins react differently with lipids, yielding a shift in the thermal transition properties

  19. Structural studies on membrane-embedded influenza hemagglutinin and its fragments.

    OpenAIRE

    Gray, C; Tamm, L K

    1997-01-01

    The mechanism of influenza virus hemagglutinin (HA)-mediated membrane fusion has been inferred in part from studies examining pH-induced structural changes in soluble HA derivatives lacking the viral membrane anchor and, sometimes, the fusion peptide (the C- and N-terminal residues of the HA2 chain, respectively). To reconcile structure-based mechanisms of HA-mediated membrane fusion with structural implications of functional studies performed on membrane-embedded HA, we have undertaken atten...

  20. Alterations in composition of sterols and in properties of erythrocyte membranes in rats with Shvetz experimental leukosis and after UV irradiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palamarchyuk, V.I.; Trikash, I.O. (AN Ukrainskoj SSR, Kiev. Inst. Biokhimii)

    1983-05-01

    Sterol composition of erythrocyte membrane is studied in experimental Schwetz leukosis. Interconnections of alteration in sterol composition and membrane properties are investigated, as well as the effect of UV-radiation on the alteration of sterol composition of erythrocyte membrane and lifetime of animals With leukosis. The effect of UV-radiation on survival of the leukosis animals has been studied which showed that irradiation of rats in the dose of 8 mWt/min/cm/sup 2/ for 12 days increases the lifetime of animals by several days, i.e. increases resistance of animals to leukosis. In the case of short-time UV-radiation of rats the cholesterine amount in erythrocyte membranes increases by 9% as compared with the norm, simultaneously, other substances appear. Acidic resistance of erythrocytes of irradiated animals also increases. The supposition is made that alterations promote the increase of organism resistance to leukosis.

  1. Alterations in composition of sterols and in properties of erythrocyte membranes in rats with Shvetz experimental leukosis and after UV irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sterol composition of erythrocyte membrane is studied in experimental Schwetz leukosis. Interconnections of alteration in sterol composition and membrane properties are investigated, as well as the effect of UV-radiation on the alteration of sterol composition of erythrocyte membrane and lifetime of animals With leukosis. The effect of UV-radiation on survival of the leukosis animals has been studied which showed that irradiation of rats in the dose of 8 mWt/min/cm2 for 12 days increases the lifetime of animals by several days, i.e. increases resistance of animals to leukosis. In the case of short-time UV-radiation of rats the cholesterine amount in erythrocyte membranes increases by 9% as compared with the norm, simultaneously, other substances appear. Acidic resistance of erythrocytes of irradiated animals also increases. The supposition is made that alterations promote the increase of organism resistance to leukosis

  2. Structural health monitoring (vibration) as a tool for identifying structural alterations of the lumbar spine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kawchuk, Gregory N; Hartvigsen, Jan; Edgecombe, Tiffany;

    2016-01-01

    Structural health monitoring (SHM) is an engineering technique used to identify mechanical abnormalities not readily apparent through other means. Recently, SHM has been adapted for use in biological systems, but its invasive nature limits its clinical application. As such, the purpose of this...... project was to determine if a non-invasive form of SHM could identify structural alterations in the spines of living human subjects. Lumbar spines of 10 twin pairs were visualized by magnetic resonance imaging then assessed by a blinded radiologist to determine whether twin pairs were structurally...

  3. 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...

  4. Molecular Dynamics Study of Carbon Nanotubes/Polyamide Reverse Osmosis Membranes: Polymerization, Structure, and Hydration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araki, Takumi; Cruz-Silva, Rodolfo; Tejima, Syogo; Takeuchi, Kenji; Hayashi, Takuya; Inukai, Shigeki; Noguchi, Toru; Tanioka, Akihiko; Kawaguchi, Takeyuki; Terrones, Mauricio; Endo, Morinobu

    2015-11-11

    Carbon nanotubes/polyamide (PA) nanocomposite thin films have become very attractive as reverse osmosis (RO) membranes. In this work, we used molecular dynamics to simulate the influence of single walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) in the polyamide molecular structure as a model case of a carbon nanotubes/polyamide nanocomposite RO membrane. It was found that the addition of SWCNTs decreases the pore size of the composite membrane and increases the Na and Cl ion rejection. Analysis of the radial distribution function of water confined in the pores of the membranes shows that SWCNT+PA nanocomposite membranes also exhibit smaller clusters of water molecules within the membrane, thus suggesting a dense membrane structure (SWCNT+PA composite membranes were 3.9% denser than bare PA). The results provide new insights into the fabrication of novel membranes reinforced with tubular structures for enhanced desalination performance. PMID:26505521

  5. Electrical Dissipative Structures in Membrane-Coupled Compartment Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feudel, U.; Feistel, R.; Ebeling, W.

    Reaction-diffusion systems with charged particles are studied. Conditions for the arising of electrical dissipative structures in a compartment system consisting of two boxes separated by a membrane are derived. The appearance of a polar dissipative structure is proved for a simple capacitor model in combination with a simple second order chemical kinetics which leads to an analytically solvable problem. Electrical dissipative structures can in principle be considered as non equilibrium electrical batteries. The theoretical efficiency of such batteries is estimated.Translated AbstractElektrische Dissipative Strukturen in Membrangekoppelten SystemenEs werden Reaktions-Diffusionssysteme mit geladenen Teilchen studiert. Bedingungen für die Entstehung elektrischer dissipativer Strukturen in einem Kompartment-System, bestehend aus zwei durch eine Membran getrennten Zellen werden abgeleitet. Die Entstehung einer polaren dissipativen Struktur wird für ein einfaches Kondensatorenmodell in Kombination mit einer einfachen chemischen Kinetik, das analytische Lösbarkeit gestattet, nachgewiesen. Elektrische dissipative Strukturen können im Prinzip als elektrische Batterien fern von Gleichgewicht betrachtet werden. Der theoretische Wirkungsgrad einer solchen Batterie wird berechnet.

  6. Structural basis of complement membrane attack complex formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serna, Marina; Giles, Joanna L.; Morgan, B. Paul; Bubeck, Doryen

    2016-02-01

    In response to complement activation, the membrane attack complex (MAC) assembles from fluid-phase proteins to form pores in lipid bilayers. MAC directly lyses pathogens by a `multi-hit' mechanism; however, sublytic MAC pores on host cells activate signalling pathways. Previous studies have described the structures of individual MAC components and subcomplexes; however, the molecular details of its assembly and mechanism of action remain unresolved. Here we report the electron cryo-microscopy structure of human MAC at subnanometre resolution. Structural analyses define the stoichiometry of the complete pore and identify a network of interaction interfaces that determine its assembly mechanism. MAC adopts a `split-washer' configuration, in contrast to the predicted closed ring observed for perforin and cholesterol-dependent cytolysins. Assembly precursors partially penetrate the lipid bilayer, resulting in an irregular β-barrel pore. Our results demonstrate how differences in symmetric and asymmetric components of the MAC underpin a molecular basis for pore formation and suggest a mechanism of action that extends beyond membrane penetration.

  7. Structural Alterations of the Glomerular Wall And Vessels in Early Stages of Diabetes Mellitus: Light and Transmission Electron Microscopic Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dkhil MA

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: The capillary changes at the initial stage of diabetes may show an angioarchitecture clearly different from those of later stages and,/or very severe glomerular change. However, the onset of alterations in the early phases is unclear. This study attempts to determine the functional and structural alterations of the glomerular wall and vesicles in the early stage of diabetes.Material and Methods: Twenty-five adult rats were used in this study. They were divided into two groups: the first group of five was used as a control .The second group of 20 (the experimental group was injected intraperitoneally by a single dose of streptozotocin to induce hyperglycemia. Rats were sacrificed after ten days, two months, and four months.Five rats at two months of age with hyperglycemia were treated with insulin for eight weeks. Renal tissues were prepared by routine technique for light and transmission electron microscopic evaluation. Results: By light microscopy after ten days of induced hyperglycemia, there were no structural modifications detected either in renal glomerular fine vessels or in the glomerular basement membrane of the glomerular capillaries. After two months, there was a moderate glomerular enlargement and dilatation of glomerular capillaries, afferent, and efferent arterioles. After four months, glomerular basement membrane thickening was the only structural alteration observed. Recovery of the glomerular alterations was observed after two months of treatment with insulin. Conclusion: In early stages of diabetes mellitus in rats, there was an increase in the diameter of glomerular vessels. In later stages of the disease, the reverse was seen, but insulin treatment had a positive role in reversing these changes in the study subjects.

  8. Photochemical control of microphase structure in biocompatible polyester membranes generated by ultraviolet irradiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Rui; Pang, Wenmin; Tian, Liming; Nie, Kangming

    2016-04-13

    The morphologies of PEMA-RB/PHEMA semi-interpenetrating polymeric network (semi-IPN) blended membranes prepared via ultraviolet (UV) promoted in situ photopolymerization were investigated using laser scanning confocal fluorescence microscopy (LSCFM). The results show that the semi-IPN morphology generated through UV light irradiation-induced microphase separation is considerably dependent on the relative rates of the photochemical reaction and microphase separation in the reactive precursor mixtures, which are determined by reactive dynamic factors. Changing the dynamic conditions, such as the UV light intensity, content of cross-linker and concentration of HEMA photopolymerization monomer resulted in a corresponding alteration of the morphological structure in the semi-IPN membranes. The hierarchical morphology appearing in the PEMA-RB/PHEMA semi-IPN should be related to the inhomogeneous photoreaction dynamics of the mixed system. Desired morphologies of the semi-IPN blend membranes can be obtained by controlling the corresponding dynamic conditions of both the photochemical reaction and microphase separation. PMID:26968035

  9. Alteration of membrane lipid biophysical properties and resistance of human lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells to cisplatin

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIANG; Xingjie; (

    2001-01-01

    [1]Simon, S. M., Schindler, M., Cell biological mechanisms of multidrug resistance in tumors, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 1994, 91: 3497.[2]Ambudkar, S. V., Dey, S., Hrycyna, C. A. et al., Biochemical, cellular, and pharmacological aspects of the multidrug trans-porter, Annu. Rev. Pharmacol. Toxicol., 1999, 39: 361.[3]Dudeja, P. K., Anderson, K. M., Harris, J. S. et al., Reversal of multidrug resistance phenotype by surfactants: Relationship to membrane lipid fluidity, Arch. Biochem. Biophys., 1995, 319 (1): 8309.[4]Collins, J. M., Scott, R. B., Grogan, W. M., Plasma membrane fluidity gradients of human peripheral blood leukocytes, J. Cell Physiol., 1990, 144: 42.[5]Collins, J. M., Dominey, R. N., Grogan, W. M., Shape of the fluidity gradient in the plasma membrane of living Hela cells, J. Lipid Res., 1990, 31: 261.[6]Ashman, R. F., Peckham, D., Alhasan, S. et al., Membrane unpacking and the rapid disposal of apoptotic cells, Immunol. Lett., 1995, 48(3): 159.[7]Sentjurc, M., Zorec, M., Cemazar, M. et al., Effect of vinblastine on cell membrane fluidity in vinblastine-sensitive and -resistant HeLa cells, Cancer Lett., 1998, 130(1-2):183.[8]Regev, R., Assaraf, Y. G., Eytan, G. D. et al., Membrane fluidization by ether, other anesthetics, and certain agents abolish-es P-glycoprotein ATPase activity and modulates efflux from multidrug-resistant cells, Eur. J. Biochem., 1999, 259(1-2): 18.[9]Robert, A. S., Mariamme, S., Katherine, L. S., Altered lipid packing identifies apoptotic thymocytes, Immunol. Lett., 1993, 36: 283.[10] Lagerberg, J. W., Kallen, K. J., Haest, C. W. et al., Factors affecting the amount and the mode of merocyanine 540 binding to the membrane of human erythrocytes, Biochim. Biophys. Acta, 1995, 1235(2): 428.[11] Stillwell, W., Wassall, S. R., Dumaual, A. C. et al., Use of merocyanine (MC540) in quantifying lipid domains and pack-ing in phospholipid vesicles and tumor cells, Biochem. Biophys. Acta, 1993

  10. Alterations in nuclear structure promote lupus autoimmunity in a mouse model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Namrata; Johnstone, Duncan B.; Martin, Kayla A.; Tempera, Italo; Kaplan, Mariana J.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disorder characterized by the development of autoantibodies that recognize components of the cell nucleus. The vast majority of lupus research has focused on either the contributions of immune cell dysfunction or the genetics of the disease. Because granulocytes isolated from human SLE patients had alterations in neutrophil nuclear morphology that resembled the Pelger–Huet anomaly, and had prominent mis-splicing of mRNA encoding the nuclear membrane protein lamin B receptor (LBR), consistent with their Pelger–Huet-like nuclear morphology, we used a novel mouse model system to test the hypothesis that a disruption in the structure of the nucleus itself also contributes to the development of lupus autoimmunity. The lupus-prone mouse strain New Zealand White (NZW) was crossed with c57Bl/6 mice harboring a heterozygous autosomal dominant mutation in Lbr (B6.Lbric/+), and the (NZW×B6.Lbric)F1 offspring were evaluated for induction of lupus autoimmunity. Only female (NZW×B6.Lbric)F1 mice developed lupus autoimmunity, which included splenomegaly, kidney damage and autoantibodies. Kidney damage was accompanied by immune complex deposition, and perivascular and tubule infiltration of mononuclear cells. The titers of anti-chromatin antibodies exceeded those of aged female MRL-Faslpr mice, and were predominantly of the IgG2 subclasses. The anti-nuclear antibody staining profile of female (NZW×B6.Lbric)F1 sera was complex, and consisted of an anti-nuclear membrane reactivity that colocalized with the A-type lamina, in combination with a homogeneous pattern that was related to the recognition of histones with covalent modifications that are associated with gene activation. An anti-neutrophil IgM recognizing calreticulin, but not myeloperoxidase (MPO) or proteinase 3 (PR3), was also identified. Thus, alterations in nuclear structure contribute to lupus autoimmunity when expressed in the context of a lupus

  11. Modelling and Fabrication of Micro-SOFC Membrane Structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brigita ABAKEVIČIENĖ

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Fabrication process of micro-SOFC membrane structure using the bulk micromachining of silicon technique with SiO2 and Si3N4 sacrificial layers is presented in this study. The process involves back side photolithography, magnetron sputtering of platinum thin films, thermal evaporation of YSZ electrolyte, deep reactive ion etching of silicon, and, finally, release of free-standing membrane using CF4/O2 plasma etching.X-ray analysis shows the cubic phase of YSZ electrolyte and platinum electrodes. Modelling of normal stress distribution in the micro-SOFC structure with the Si3N4 sacrificial layer shows that at high temperatures the substrate expands less than the coating, causing tensile stresses in the substrate area next to the coating and compressive stresses in the coating, as the substrate material has a lower coefficient of thermal expansion than the layered Pt/YSZ/Pt coating. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5755/j01.ms.20.2.5585

  12. Insulin alters the target size of the peripheral cyclic AMP phosphodiesterase but not the integral cyclic GMP-stimulated cyclic AMP phosphodiesterase in liver plasma membranes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radiation inactivation of the two high affinity cyclic AMP phosphodiesterases (PDE) found in liver plasma membranes afforded an estimation of their molecular target sizes in situ. The activity of the peripheral plasma membrane PDE decayed as a single exponential with a target size corresponding to a monomer of circa 54 kDa. The integral, cyclic GMP-stimulated PDE decayed as a dimer of circa 125 kDa. Preincubation of plasma membranes with insulin (10nM), prior to irradiation, caused the target size of only the peripheral plasma membrane PDE to increase. We suggest that insulin addition causes the peripheral plasma membrane PDE to alter its coupling to an integral plasma membrane protein with a target size of circa 90 kDa

  13. Altered cGMP dynamics at the plasma membrane contribute to diarrhea in ulcerative colitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arora, Kavisha; Sinha, Chandrima; Zhang, Weiqiang; Moon, Chang Suk; Ren, Aixia; Yarlagadda, Sunitha; Dostmann, Wolfgang R; Adebiyi, Adebowale; Haberman, Yael; Denson, Lee A; Wang, Xusheng; Naren, Anjaparavanda P

    2015-10-01

    Ulcerative colitis (UC) belongs to inflammatory bowel disorders, a group of gastrointestinal disorders that can produce serious recurring diarrhea in affected patients. The mechanism for UC- and inflammatory bowel disorder-associated diarrhea is not well understood. The cystic fibrosis transmembrane-conductance regulator (CFTR) chloride channel plays an important role in fluid and water transport across the intestinal mucosa. CFTR channel function is regulated in a compartmentalized manner through the formation of CFTR-containing macromolecular complexes at the plasma membrane. In this study, we demonstrate the involvement of a novel macromolecular signaling pathway that causes diarrhea in UC. We found that a nitric oxide-producing enzyme, inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), is overexpressed under the plasma membrane and generates compartmentalized cGMP in gut epithelia in UC. The scaffolding protein Na(+)/H(+) exchanger regulatory factor 2 (NHERF2) bridges iNOS with CFTR, forming CFTR-NHERF2-iNOS macromolecular complexes that potentiate CFTR channel function via the nitric oxide-cGMP pathway under inflammatory conditions both in vitro and in vivo. Potential disruption of these complexes in Nherf2(-/-) mice may render them more resistant to CFTR-mediated secretory diarrhea than Nherf2(+/+) mice in murine colitis models. Our study provides insight into the mechanism of pathophysiologic occurrence of diarrhea in UC and suggests that targeting CFTR and CFTR-containing macromolecular complexes will ameliorate diarrheal symptoms and improve conditions associated with inflammatory bowel disorders. PMID:26261085

  14. Heat Denaturation of Protein Structures and Chlorophyll States in PSII Membranes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李冬海; 阮翔; 许强; 王可玢; 公衍道; 匡廷云; 赵南明

    2002-01-01

    Heat denaturation is an important technique in the study of the structure and function of photosynthetic proteins. Heat denaturation of photosystem II (PSII) membrane was studied using circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and oxygen electrode. Complete loss of oxygen-evolving activity of the PSII membrane was observed at temperatures below 45℃. The decrease of excitonic interaction between chlorophyll molecules occurred more rapidly than the change of the protein secondary structure of the PSII membrane at temperatures above 45℃. The results indicate that the protein secondary structure of the membrane proteins in PSII membranes is more stable than the excitonic interaction between chlorophyll molecules during heat denaturation.

  15. Hydration effects on membrane structure probed by single molecule orientations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huckabay, Heath A; Dunn, Robert C

    2011-03-15

    Single molecule fluorescence measurements are used to probe the structural changes in glass-supported DPPC bilayers as a function of relative humidity (RH). Defocused polarized total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy is employed to determine the three-dimensional orientation of the fluorescent lipid analogue BODIPY-PC, doped into DPPC membranes in trace amounts. Supported DPPC bilayers formed using vesicle fusion and Langmuir-Blodgett/Langmuir-Schäfer (LB/LS) transfer are compared and show similar trends as a function of relative humidity. Population histograms of the emission dipole tilt angle reveal bimodal distributions as observed previously for BODIPY-PC in DPPC. These distributions are dominated by large populations of BODIPY-PC molecules with emission dipoles oriented parallel (≥81°) and normal (≤10°) to the membrane plane, with less than 25% oriented at intermediate tilts. As the relative humidity is increased from 13% to 95%, the population of molecules oriented normal to the surface decreases with a concomitant increase in those oriented parallel to the surface. The close agreement in trends observed for bilayers formed from vesicle fusion and LB/LS transfer supports the assignment of an equivalent surface pressure of 23 mN/m for bilayers formed from vesicle fusion. At each RH condition, a small population of BODIPY-PC dye molecules are laterally mobile in both bilayer preparations. This population exponentially increases with RH but never exceeds 6% of the total population. Interestingly, even under conditions where there is little lateral diffusion, fluctuations in the single molecule orientations can be observed which suggests there is appreciable freedom in the acyl chain region. Dynamic measurements of single molecule orientation changes, therefore, provide a new view into membrane properties at the single molecule level. PMID:21319764

  16. Evidence that Characean membrane transport is not significantly altered by incident electromagnetic radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gokhale, A.V.; Pickard, W.F.

    1985-06-01

    Giant cells of the algae Chara braunii and Nitella flexilis were exposed to VHF, UHF, and X-Band electromagnetic radiation. Their responses were measured by examining their vacuolar potential for dc offsets with various rise times, very small ac offsets phase-locked to a pulse modulation frequency, and slow drifts in the RMS level of membrane noise over the band 0.2-2.0 Hz. Both continuous-wave (CW) and pulsed irradiation protocols were employed, and the cw was used in both discrete frequency and swept-frequency modes. The average power levels ranged from 0.1 to 5000 W/m/sup 2/. In no case was a bioeffect detected.

  17. Alteration of membrane transductive mechanisms induced by ethanol in human lymphocyte cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanò, G; Belia, S; Mariggiò, M A; Antonica, A; Agea, E; Spinozzi, F

    1993-03-01

    Ethanol, in millimolar concentrations, significantly modifies different transductive systems in human lymphocyte cultures. In particular, the presence of alcohol in the medium more than doubles the [Ca2+]i (from 70-90 to 200-250 nM), increasing Ca2+ fluxes from outside, and inhibits the active transport carried out by the calcium pump. The Ca2+ release from intracellular stores is not involved because 10 mM EGTA in the medium completely abolished the rise of [Ca2+]i. Since IP3 levels and cAMP concentrations are also involved in ethanol events (although with opposite effects), it seems that the alcohol may have a specific target on cell membranes (G-proteins) which influence many transductive pathways. PMID:8388700

  18. Triphenylmethylphosphonium cation distribution as a measure of hormone-induced alterations in white adipocyte membrane potential

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Triphenylmethylphosphonium (TPMP+) partitions into the mitochondrial and cytosolic compartments in the rat white adipocyte in a potential-dependent fashion. The relationship between [3H]TPMP+ distribution, intracellular cAMP generation and lipolysis in response to hormones and cAMP-mimetic compounds was examined. Half-maximal [3H]TPMP+ efflux and glycerol release were produced by 15 and 9 nM adrenocorticotropin, 170 and 110 nM 1-epinephrine, 70 and 27 microM isobutylmethylxanthine and 800 and 750 microM dibutyryl cAMP, respectively. Hormone-stimulated cAMP generation was also correlated with [3H]TPMP+ efflux and lipolysis in terms of concentration dependency. In kinetic experiments, glycerol release and [3H]TPMP+ efflux in response to adrenocorticotropin or cholera toxin proceeded over a similar time course, whereas an earlier rise in cAMP generation was detected. The depolarizing effect of lipolytic compounds was localized to the mitochondrial compartment. When cells were incubated in elevated-[K+]0 buffer, the stimulatory effect of dibutyryl cAMP on [3H]TPMP+ efflux and lipolysis persisted, suggesting that maintenance of the plasma membrane potential is not critical for demonstration of these responses. When the extracellular concentration of serum albumin, which provides binding sites for free fatty acids, was increased from 1 to 3%, an increase in glycerol release and a decrease in [3H]TPMP+ efflux was observed. We suggest that intracellular free fatty acid accumulation in response to lipolytic agents causes dissipation of the mitochondrial membrane potential and efflux of [3H]TPMP+ from the organelle and cell

  19. A Surface Biotinylation Strategy for Reproducible Plasma Membrane Protein Purification and Tracking of Genetic and Drug-Induced Alterations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hörmann, Katrin; Stukalov, Alexey; Müller, André C; Heinz, Leonhard X; Superti-Furga, Giulio; Colinge, Jacques; Bennett, Keiryn L

    2016-02-01

    Plasma membrane (PM) proteins contribute to the identity of a cell, mediate contact and communication, and account for more than two-thirds of known drug targets.1-8 In the past years, several protocols for the proteomic profiling of PM proteins have been described. Nevertheless, comparative analyses have mainly focused on different variations of one approach.9-11 We compared sulfo-NHS-SS-biotinylation, aminooxy-biotinylation, and surface coating with silica beads to isolate PM proteins for subsequent analysis by one-dimensional gel-free liquid chromatography mass spectrometry. Absolute and relative numbers of PM proteins and reproducibility parameters on a qualitative and quantitative level were assessed. Sulfo-NHS-SS-biotinylation outperformed aminooxy-biotinylation and surface coating using silica beads for most of the monitored criteria. We further simplified this procedure by a competitive biotin elution strategy achieving an average PM annotated protein fraction of 54% (347 proteins). Computational analysis using additional databases and prediction tools revealed that in total over 90% of the purified proteins were associated with the PM, mostly as interactors. The modified sulfo-NHS-SS-biotinylation protocol was validated by tracking changes in the plasma membrane proteome composition induced by genetic alteration and drug treatment. Glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI)-anchored proteins were depleted in PM purifications from cells deficient in the GPI transamidase component PIGS, and treatment of cells with tunicamycin significantly reduced the abundance of N-glycoproteins in surface purifications. PMID:26699813

  20. Structure and supramolecular architecture of membrane channel-forming peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spach, G; Duclohier, H; Molle, G; Valleton, J M

    1989-01-01

    Peptides gathering together to induce channels in lipid bilayers may be classified in several categories according to the spatial structures involved. For example, gramicidin A forms intramolecular tubes, alamethicin, bundles of helical rods with intermolecular pores, porins (being proteins, properly speaking) are rich in beta-sheets that may form barrels, whereas cyclic peptides might stack together resulting in the formation of pores. The chemical structure of these compounds is now well characterized. The transmembrane electrical signals that they transmit are also typical of the particular supramolecular configurations (or architecture). Investigations in this field are thus relevant to structure-function relationship studies due to the availability of natural or synthetic analogues allowing the measurement of the influence of physico-chemical parameters upon the energy profiles of the pores. Consequently, questions such as the existence and probabilities of conductance substrates, their voltage-dependence and their ion or molecular selectivity can be tackled. Today, the loosest aspect of these studies lies in the actual molecular conformations and architecture in the membranes of the peptide aggregates, the knowledge of which remains imprecise, even 'at rest' in the best-studied cases. This review attempts to point out still unresolved questions and to propose some plausible approaches concerning, for example: 1) the configurations of the molecular aggregates responsible for ion transfer; 2) the mechanisms for channel-opening and closing (gating); 3) the eventual cooperative phenomena between channels, via the bilayer or interfacial components. Possible applications of these structures will be tentatively outlined. PMID:2470416

  1. Decidual-secreted factors alter invasive trophoblast membrane and secreted proteins implying a role for decidual cell regulation of placentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menkhorst, Ellen Melaleuca; Lane, Natalie; Winship, Amy Louise; Li, Priscilla; Yap, Joanne; Meehan, Katie; Rainczuk, Adam; Stephens, Andrew; Dimitriadis, Evdokia

    2012-01-01

    Inadequate or inappropriate implantation and placentation during the establishment of human pregnancy is thought to lead to first trimester miscarriage, placental insufficiency and other obstetric complications. To create the placental blood supply, specialized cells, the 'extravillous trophoblast' (EVT) invade through the differentiated uterine endometrium (the decidua) to engraft and remodel uterine spiral arteries. We hypothesized that decidual factors would regulate EVT function by altering the production of EVT membrane and secreted factors. We used a proteomics approach to identify EVT membrane and secreted proteins regulated by decidual cell factors. Human endometrial stromal cells were decidualized in vitro by treatment with estradiol (10(-8) M), medroxyprogesterone acetate (10(-7) M) and cAMP (0.5 mM) for 14 days. Conditioned media (CM) was collected on day 2 (non-decidualized CM) and 14 (decidualized CM) of treatment. Isolated primary EVT cultured on Matrigel™ were treated with media control, non-decidualized or decidualized CM for 16 h. EVT CM was fractionated for proteins HPLC-MS/MS. 43 proteins produced by EVT were identified; 14 not previously known to be expressed in the placenta and 12 which had previously been associated with diseases of pregnancy including preeclampsia. Profilin 1, lysosome associated membrane glycoprotein 1 (LAMP1), dipeptidyl peptidase 1 (DPP1/cathepsin C) and annexin A2 expression by interstitial EVT in vivo was validated by immunhistochemistry. Decidual CM regulation in vitro was validated by western blotting: decidualized CM upregulated profilin 1 in EVT CM and non-decidualized CM upregulated annexin A2 in EVT CM and pro-DPP1 in EVT cell lysate. Here, non-decidualized factors induced protease expression by EVT suggesting that non-decidualized factors may induce a pro-inflammatory cascade. Preeclampsia is a pro-inflammatory condition. Overall, we have demonstrated the potential of a proteomics approach to identify novel

  2. Structure-function relationships in pulmonary surfactant membranes: from biophysics to therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez-Rodriguez, Elena; Pérez-Gil, Jesús

    2014-06-01

    Pulmonary surfactant is an essential lipid-protein complex to maintain an operative respiratory surface at the mammalian lungs. It reduces surface tension at the alveolar air-liquid interface to stabilise the lungs against physical forces operating along the compression-expansion breathing cycles. At the same time, surfactant integrates elements establishing a primary barrier against the entry of pathogens. Lack or deficiencies of the surfactant system are associated with respiratory pathologies, which treatment often includes supplementation with exogenous materials. The present review summarises current models on the molecular mechanisms of surfactant function, with particular emphasis in its biophysical properties to stabilise the lungs and the molecular alterations connecting impaired surfactant with diseased organs. It also provides a perspective on the current surfactant-based strategies to treat respiratory pathologies. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Membrane Structure and Function: Relevance in the Cell's Physiology, Pathology and Therapy. PMID:24525076

  3. Structural and Electrochemical Analysis of PMMA Based Gel Electrolyte Membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chithra M. Mathew

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available New gel polymer electrolytes containing poly(vinylidene chloride-co-acrylonitrile and poly(methyl methacrylate are prepared by solution casting method. With the addition of 60 wt.% of EC to PVdC-AN/PMMA blend, ionic conductivity value 0.398×10-6 S cm−1 has been achieved. XRD and FT-IR studies have been conducted to investigate the structure and complexation in the polymer gel electrolytes. The FT-IR spectra show that the functional groups C=O and C≡N play major role in ion conduction. Thermal stability of the prepared membranes is found to be about 180°C.

  4. The Structural Basis of Cholesterol Accessibility in Membranes

    OpenAIRE

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

    2013-01-01

    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 mo...

  5. Kinetics of structural reorganizations in multilamellarphotosynthetic membranes monitored by small-angle neutronscattering

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nagy, Gergely; Kovacs, Laszlo; Unnep, Renata;

    2013-01-01

    We demonstrate the power of time-resolved small-angle neutron scattering experiments for the investigation of the structure and structural reorganizations of multilamellar photosynthetic membranes. In addition to briefly summarizing our results on thylakoid membranes isolated from higher plants...... and in unicellular organisms, we discuss the advantages and technical and methodological limitations of timeresolved SANS. We present a detailed and more systematical investigation of the kinetics of light-induced structural reorganizations in isolated spinach thylakoid membranes, which show how changes...

  6. The insecticide 1,1,1-trichloro-2,2-bis(p-chlorophenyl) ethane (DDT) alters the membrane raft location of the TSH receptor stably expressed in Chinese hamster ovary cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    DDT is a highly lipophilic molecule known to deplete membrane rafts of their phosphoglycolipid and cholesterol contents. However, we have recently shown that DDT can also alter the thyroid homeostasis by inhibiting TSH receptor (TSHr) internalization. The present study was undertaken to verify whether DDT goitrogenic effects are due to the insecticide acting directly on TSHr or via alteration of the membrane rafts hosting the receptor itself. Our results demonstrate that, in CHO-TSHr transfected cells, TSHr is activated in the presence of TSH, while it is inhibited following DDT exposure. DDT can also reduce the endocytic vesicular traffic, alter the extension of multi-branched microvilli along their plasma membranes and induce TSHr shedding in vesicular forms. To verify whether TSHr displacement might depend on DDT altering the raft constitution of CHO-TSHr cell membranes the extent of TSHr and lipid raft co-localization was examined by confocal microscopy. Evidence shows that receptor/raft co-localization increased significantly upon exposure to TSH, while receptors and lipid rafts become dislodged on opposite cell poles in DDT-exposed CHO-TSHr cells. As a control, under similar culturing conditions, diphenylethylene, which is known to be a lipophilic substance that is structurally related to DDT, did not affect the extent of TSHr and lipid raft co-localization in CHO-TSHr cells treated with TSH. These findings corroborate and extend our view that, in CHO cells, the DDT disrupting action on TSHr is primarily due to the insecticide acting on membranes to deplete their raft cholesterol content, and that the resulting inhibition on TSHr internalization is due to receptor dislodgement from altered raft microdomains of the plasma membrane. - Highlights: →DDT is a pesticide with a severe environmental impact →Epidemiologic correlation exists between exposition to DDT and thyroid dysfunction →DDT is a lipophilic molecule that has been shown to inhibit TSH receptor

  7. Myocardial Reloading after Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Alters Substrate Metabolism While Promoting Protein Synthesis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kajimoto, Masaki; Priddy, Colleen M.; Ledee, Dolena; Xu, Chun; Isern, Nancy G.; Olson, Aaron; Des Rosiers, Christine; Portman, Michael A.

    2013-08-19

    Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) unloads the heart providing a bridge to recovery in children after myocardial stunning. Mortality after ECMO remains high.Cardiac substrate and amino acid requirements upon weaning are unknown and may impact recovery. We assessed the hypothesis that ventricular reloading modulates both substrate entry into the citric acid cycle (CAC) and myocardial protein synthesis. Fourteen immature piglets (7.8-15.6 kg) were separated into 2 groups based on ventricular loading status: 8 hour-ECMO (UNLOAD) and post-wean from ECMO (RELOAD). We infused [2-13C]-pyruvate as an oxidative substrate and [13C6]-L-leucine, as a tracer of amino acid oxidation and protein synthesis into the coronary artery. RELOAD showed marked elevations in myocardial oxygen consumption above baseline and UNLOAD. Pyruvate uptake was markedly increased though RELOAD decreased pyruvate contribution to oxidative CAC metabolism.RELOAD also increased absolute concentrations of all CAC intermediates, while maintaining or increasing 13C-molar percent enrichment. RELOAD also significantly increased cardiac fractional protein synthesis rates by >70% over UNLOAD. Conclusions: RELOAD produced high energy metabolic requirement and rebound protein synthesis. Relative pyruvate decarboxylation decreased with RELOAD while promoting anaplerotic pyruvate carboxylation and amino acid incorporation into protein rather than to the CAC for oxidation. These perturbations may serve as therapeutic targets to improve contractile function after ECMO.

  8. Influence of Lipid Oxidization on Structures and Functions of Biological Membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Korytowski, Agatha Anna

    2016-01-01

    The primary aim of this thesis is to clarify how the structures and functions of biological membranes are influenced by the oxidative damage mediated by free radicals. As a precisely defined model systems, artificially reconstituted lipid membranes (Langmuir monolayers, vesicles, supported membranes, multilamellar membranes) incorporating two oxidized phospholipids bearing aldehyde or carboxyl groups at the end of truncated sn-2 acyl chains were fabricated. By the combination of various exper...

  9. Altered cytoskeletal structures in transformed cells exhibiting obviously metastatic capabilities

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LINZHONGXIANG; WUBINGQUAN; 等

    1990-01-01

    Cytoskeletal changes in transformed cells (LM-51) eshibiting obviously metastatic capabilities were investigated by utilization of double-fluorescent labelling through combinations of:(1) tubulin indirect immunofluorescence plus Rhodamine-phalloidin staining of F-actins;(2) indirect immunofluorescent staining with α-actinin polyclonal-and vinculin monoclonal antibodies.The LM-51 cells which showed metastatic index of >50% were derived from lung metastasis in nude mice after subcutaneous inoculation of human highly metastatic tumor DNA transfected NIH3T3 cell transformants.The parent NIH3T3 cells exhibited well-organized microtubules,prominent stress fibers and adhesion plaques while their transformants showed remarkable cytoskeletal alterations:(1)reduced microtubules but increased MTOC fluorescence;(2)disrupted stress fibers and fewer adhesion plaques with their protein components redistributed in the cytoplasm;(3)Factin-and α-actinin/vinculin aggregates appeared in the cytoplasm.These aggregates were dot-like,varied in size(0.1-0.4μm) and number,located near the ventral surface of the cells.TPA-induced actin/vinculin bodies were studied too.Indications that actin and α-actinin/vinculin redistribution might be important alterations involved in the expression of metastatic capabilities of LM-51 transformed cells were discussed.

  10. Influence of cholesterol and ceramide VI on the structure of multilamellar lipid membranes at water exchange

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The structural changes in the multilamellar lipid membranes of dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC)/cholesterol and DPPC/ceramide VI binary systems during hydration and dehydration have been studied by neutron diffraction. The effect of cholesterol and ceramide on the kinetics of water exchange in DPPC membranes is characterized. Compared to pure DPPC, membranes of binary systems swell faster during hydration (with a characteristic time of ∼30 min). Both compounds, ceramide VI and cholesterol, similarly affect the hydration of DPPC membranes, increasing the repeat distance due to the bilayer growth. However, in contrast to cholesterol, ceramide significantly reduces the thickness of the membrane water layer. The introduction of cholesterol into a DPPC membrane slows down the change in the parameters of the bilayer internal structure during dehydration. In the DPPC/ceramide VI/cholesterol ternary system (with a molar cholesterol concentration of 40%), cholesterol is partially released from the lamellar membrane structure into the crystalline phase.

  11. High frequency application of nanosecond pulsed electric fields alters cellular membrane disruption and fluorescent dye uptake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steelman, Zachary A.; Tolstykh, Gleb P.; Beier, Hope T.; Ibey, Bennett L.

    2016-03-01

    Cells exposed to nanosecond-pulsed electric fields (nsPEF) exhibit a wide variety of nonspecific effects, including blebbing, swelling, intracellular calcium bursts, apoptotic and necrotic cell death, formation of nanopores, and depletion of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-biphosphate (PIP2) to induce activation of the inositol trisphosphate/diacylglycerol pathway. While several studies have taken place in which multiple pulses were delivered to cells, the effect of pulse repetition rate (PRR) is not well understood. To better understand the effects of PRR, a laser scanning confocal microscope was used to observe CHO-K1 cells exposed to ten 600ns, 200V pulses at varying repetition rates (5Hz up to 500KHz) in the presence of either FM 1-43, YO-PRO-1, or Propidium Iodide (PI) fluorescent dyes, probes frequently used to indicate nanoporation or permeabilization of the plasma membrane. Dye uptake was monitored for 30 seconds after pulse application at a rate of 1 image/second. In addition, a single long pulse of equivalent energy (200V, 6 μs duration) was applied to test the hypothesis that very fast PRR will approximate the biological effects of a single long pulse of equal energy. Upon examination of the data, we found strong variation in the relationship between PRR and uptake in each of the three dyes. In particular, PI uptake showed little frequency dependence, FM 1-43 showed a strong inverse relationship between frequency and internal cell fluorescence, and YO-PRO-1 exhibited a "threshold" point of around 50 KHz, after which the inverse trend observed in FM 1-43 was seen to reverse itself. Further, a very high PRR of 500 KHz only approximated the biological effects of a single 6 μs pulse in cells stained with YO-PRO-1, suggesting that uptake of different dyes may proceed by different physical mechanisms.

  12. High Temperature Membrane with Humidification-Independent Cluster Structure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipp, Ludwig [FuelCell Energy, Inc., Danbury, CT (United States)

    2015-07-10

    The objective of this project was to develop high temperature membranes to facilitate the wide-spread deployment of hydrogen fuel cells. High temperature membranes offer significant advantages in PEM system operation, overall capital and operating costs. State-of-the-art Nafion-based membranes are inadequate for the high temperature operation. These conventional membranes become unstable at higher temperatures (90-120°C) and lose their conductivity, particularly at low relative humidity. In this program, alternate materials were developed to enable fabrication of novel high performance composite membranes. FCE’s concept for the multi-component composite membrane, named mC2, has been used in the design of more conductive membranes.

  13. Plant cell plasma membrane structure and properties under clinostatting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polulakh, Yu. A.; Zhadko, S. I.; Klimchuk, D. A.; Baraboy, V. A.; Alpatov, A. N.; Sytnik, K. M.

    Structural-functional organization of plasma membrane of pea roots seedling was investigated by methods of chemiluminescence, fluorescence probes, chromatography and freeze-fracture studies under normal conditions and clinostatting. Phase character of lipid peroxidation intensity was fixed. The initial phase of this process is characterized by lipid peroxidation decreasing with its next induction. The primary changes depending on free-radical mechanisms of lipid peroxidation were excellently revealed by chemiluminescence. Plasmalemma microviscosity increased on the average of 15-20 % under microgravity at the initial stages of its phenomenon. There were major changes of phosphatidilcholine and phosphatidilethanolamine contents. The total quantity of phospholipids remained rather stable. Changes of phosphatide acid concentration point to degradation and phospholipids biosynthesis. There were increases of unsaturated fatty acids mainly at the expense of linoleic and linolenic acids and also a decrease of saturated fatty acid content at the expense of palmitic and stearic acids. Unsaturation index of fatty acids increased as well. On the whole fatty acid composition was variable in comparison with phospholipids. Probably it is one of mechanisms of maintaining of microviscosity within definite limits. Considerable structural changes in organization of plasmalemma protein-lipid complex were not revealed by the freeze-fracture studies.

  14. Structural and Spectroscopic Characterization of A Nanosized Sulfated TiO2 Filler and of Nanocomposite Nafion Membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina Allodi

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available A large number of nano-sized oxides have been studied in the literature as fillers for polymeric membranes, such as Nafion®. Superacidic sulfated oxides have been proposed and characterized. Once incorporated into polymer matrices, their beneficial effect on peculiar membrane properties has been demonstrated. The alteration of physical-chemical properties of composite membranes has roots in the intermolecular interaction between the inorganic filler surface groups and the polymer chains. In the attempt to tackle this fundamental issue, here we discuss, by a multi-technique approach, the properties of a nanosized sulfated titania material as a candidate filler for Nafion membranes. The results of a systematic study carried out by synchrotron X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, thermogravimetry, Raman and infrared spectroscopies are presented and discussed to get novel insights about the structural features, molecular properties, and morphological characteristics of sulphated TiO2 nanopowders and composite Nafion membranes containing different amount of sulfated TiO2 nanoparticles (2%, 5%, 7% w/w.

  15. Structural properties of lipid reconstructs and lipid composition of normotensive and hypertensive rat vascular smooth muscle cell membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T.R. Oliveira

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Multiple cell membrane alterations have been reported to be the cause of various forms of hypertension. The present study focuses on the lipid portion of the membranes, characterizing the microviscosity of membranes reconstituted with lipids extracted from the aorta and mesenteric arteries of spontaneously hypertensive (SHR and normotensive control rat strains (WKY and NWR. Membrane-incorporated phospholipid spin labels were used to monitor the bilayer structure at different depths. The packing of lipids extracted from both aorta and mesenteric arteries of normotensive and hypertensive rats was similar. Lipid extract analysis showed similar phospholipid composition for all membranes. However, cholesterol content was lower in SHR arteries than in normotensive animal arteries. These findings contrast with the fact that the SHR aorta is hyporeactive while the SHR mesenteric artery is hyperreactive to vasopressor agents when compared to the vessels of normotensive animal strains. Hence, factors other than microviscosity of bulk lipids contribute to the vascular smooth muscle reactivity and hypertension of SHR. The excess cholesterol in the arteries of normotensive animal strains apparently is not dissolved in bulk lipids and is not directly related to vascular reactivity since it is present in both the aorta and mesenteric arteries. The lower cholesterol concentrations in SHR arteries may in fact result from metabolic differences due to the hypertensive state or to genes that co-segregate with those that determine hypertension during the process of strain selection.

  16. Post-radiation changes in structural and functional properties of thymocyte plasma membranes of irradiated rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rats were exposed to radiation doses of 1.5, 4 and 7 Gy. Binding properties of 1-anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonate, lipid viscosity, membrane protein structure, the activity of Ca2+-ATPhase and Mg2+-ATPhase in thymocyte plasma membranes were studied were investigated in health and on 1, 8, 15, 22, and 30 days. The character of post-radiation changes in the structure of thymocytes plasma membranes was determined

  17. Lipid membranes for the fabrication of functional micro- and nano-structures

    OpenAIRE

    Gopalakrishnan, Gopakumar; Vogel, Horst

    2007-01-01

    The central goal of this thesis work is to fabricate novel, functional fluorescent nanostructures in confined systems offered by phospholipid membranes, which are known to have highly ordered, thermotropic and lyotropic structures. In separate approaches, we have used three different lipid systems: multilamellar planar lipid membranes, unilamellar vesicular membranes as well as lipid monolayers for the development of functional fluorescent nano-, micro- and meso-scopic structures. Techniques ...

  18. Effect of Backbone Structure on Membrane Properties for Poly(arylene ether) Random and Multiblock Copolymers

    OpenAIRE

    Rowlett, Jarrett Robert

    2014-01-01

    Poly(arylene ether)s are a well-established class of thermoplastics that are known for their mechanical toughness, thermal stability, and fabrication into membranes. These materials can undergo a myriad of modifications including backbone structure variability, sulfonation, and crosslinking. In this dissertation, structure-property relationships are considered for poly(arylene ether)s with regard to membrane applications for proton exchange and gas separation membranes. All of the proton...

  19. Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Structural Studies of Membrane Proteins in Micelles and Bilayers

    OpenAIRE

    Gong, Xiao-Min; Franzin, Carla M.; Thai, Khang; Yu, Jinghua; Marassi, Francesca M.

    2007-01-01

    Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy enables determination of membrane protein structures in lipid environments, such as micelles and bilayers. This chapter outlines the steps for membrane-protein structure determination using solution NMR with micelle samples, and solid-state NMR with oriented lipid-bilayer samples. The methods for protein expression and purification, sample preparation, and NMR experiments are described and illustrated with examples from γ and CHIF, two membrane pr...

  20. The plasma membrane of Saccharomyces cerevisiae: structure, function, and biogenesis.

    OpenAIRE

    van der Rest, M E; Kamminga, A H; Nakano, A.; Anraku, Y; Poolman, B; Konings, W N

    1995-01-01

    The composition of phospholipids, sphingolipids, and sterols in the plasma membrane has a strong influence on the activity of the proteins associated or embedded in the lipid bilayer. Since most lipid-synthesizing enzymes in Saccharomyces cerevisiae are located in intracellular organelles, an extensive flux of lipids from these organelles to the plasma membrane is required. Although the pathway of protein traffic to the plasma membrane is similar to that of most of the lipids, the bulk flow o...

  1. The Plasma Membrane of Saccharomyces cerevisiae: Structure, Function, and Biogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    VANDERREST, ME; KAMMINGA, AH; Nakano, A.; Anraku, Y; Poolman, B; KONINGS, WN

    1995-01-01

    The composition of phospholipids, sphingolipids, and sterols in the plasma membrane has a strong influence on the activity of the proteins associated or embedded in the lipid bilayer. Since most lipid-synthesizing enzymes in Saccharomyces cerevisiae are located in intracellular organelles, an extensive pur of lipids fi om these organelles to the plasma membrane is required. Although the pathway of protein traffic to the plasma membrane is similar to that of most of the lipids, the bulk flow o...

  2. Discovery of novel membrane binding structures and functions

    OpenAIRE

    Kufareva, Irina; Lenoir, Marc; Dancea, Felician; Sridhar, Pooja; Raush, Eugene; Bissig, Christin; Gruenberg, Jean; Abagyan, Ruben; Overduin, Michael

    2014-01-01

    The function of a protein is determined by its intrinsic activity in the context of its subcellular distribution. Membranes localize proteins within cellular compartments and govern their specific activities. Discovering such membrane-protein interactions is important for understanding biological mechanisms, and could uncover novel sites for therapeutic intervention. Here we present a method for detecting membrane interactive proteins and their exposed residues that insert into lipid bilayers...

  3. Nanoscale Distribution of Sulfonic Acid Groups Determines Structure and Binding of Water in Nafion Membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ling, Xiao; Bonn, Mischa; Parekh, Sapun H; Domke, Katrin F

    2016-03-14

    The connection between the nanoscale structure of two chemically equivalent, yet morphologically distinct Nafion fuel-cell membranes and their macroscopic chemical properties is demonstrated. Quantification of the chemical interactions between water and Nafion reveals that extruded membranes have smaller water channels with a reduced sulfonic acid head group density compared to dispersion-cast membranes. As a result, a disproportionally large amount of non-bulk water molecules exists in extruded membranes, which also exhibit larger proton conductivity and larger water mobility compared to cast membranes. The differences in the physicochemical properties of the membranes, that is, the chemical constitution of the water channels and the local water structure, and the accompanying differences in macroscopic water and proton transport suggest that the chemistry of nanoscale channels is an important, yet largely overlooked parameter that influences the functionality of fuel-cell membranes. PMID:26895211

  4. Molecular Dynamics Studies of Structure and Functions of Water-Membrane Interfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Wilson, Michael A.; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    A large number of essential cellular processes occur at the interfaces between water and membranes. The selectivity and dynamics of these processes are largely determined by the structural and electrical properties of the water-membrane interface. We investigate these properties by the molecular dynamics method. Over the time scales of the simulations, the membrane undergoes fluctuations described by the capillary wave model. These fluctuations produce occasional thinning defects in the membrane which provide effective pathways for passive transport of ions and small molecules across the membrane. Ions moving through the membrane markedly disrupt its structure and allow for significant water penetration into the membrane interior. Selectivity of transport, with respect to ionic charge, is determined by the interfacial electrostatic potential. Many small molecules. of potential significance in catalysis, bioenergetics and pharmacology, are shown to bind to the interface. The energetics and dynamics of this process will be discussed.

  5. Altered intrahemispheric structural connectivity in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bastian Cheng

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Gilles de la Tourette syndrome (GTS is a common developmental neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by tics and frequent psychiatric comorbidities, often causing significant disability. Tic generation has been linked to disturbed networks of brain areas involved in planning, controlling and execution of actions, particularly structural and functional disorders in the striatum and cortico–striato–thalamo–cortical loops. We therefore applied structural diffusion tensor imaging (DTI to characterize changes in intrahemispheric white matter connectivity in cortico-subcortical circuits engaged in motor control in 15 GTS patients without psychiatric comorbidities. White matter connectivity was analyzed by probabilistic fiber tractography between 12 predefined cortical and subcortical regions of interest. Connectivity values were combined with measures of clinical severity rated by the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale (YGTSS. GTS patients showed widespread structural connectivity deficits. Lower connectivity values were found specifically in tracts connecting the supplementary motor areas (SMA with basal ganglia (pre-SMA–putamen, SMA–putamen and in frontal cortico-cortical circuits. There was an overall trend towards negative correlations between structural connectivity in these tracts and YGTSS scores. Structural connectivity of frontal brain networks involved in planning, controlling and executing actions is reduced in adult GTS patients which is associated with tic severity. These findings are in line with the concept of GTS as a neurodevelopmental disorder of brain immaturity.

  6. Alterations in archaeological bones thermally treated: structure and morphology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Archaeological bones found close to Mexico city (Tlatelcomila) have been characterized by X-ray Diffraction, Small Angle X-ray Spectroscopy and Scanning Electron Microscopy. These techniques, which are not conventionally used in archaeological research, provided useful information. The boiled bones were clearly distinguished from grilled bones. The degree of deterioration of the bone structure was quantified through parameters such as gyration radius or fractal dimension. The morphology followed the structural modifications and changes resulting from thermic exposure. (Author) 23 refs., 1 tab., 2 figs

  7. Decidual-secreted factors alter invasive trophoblast membrane and secreted proteins implying a role for decidual cell regulation of placentation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ellen Melaleuca Menkhorst

    Full Text Available Inadequate or inappropriate implantation and placentation during the establishment of human pregnancy is thought to lead to first trimester miscarriage, placental insufficiency and other obstetric complications. To create the placental blood supply, specialized cells, the 'extravillous trophoblast' (EVT invade through the differentiated uterine endometrium (the decidua to engraft and remodel uterine spiral arteries. We hypothesized that decidual factors would regulate EVT function by altering the production of EVT membrane and secreted factors. We used a proteomics approach to identify EVT membrane and secreted proteins regulated by decidual cell factors. Human endometrial stromal cells were decidualized in vitro by treatment with estradiol (10(-8 M, medroxyprogesterone acetate (10(-7 M and cAMP (0.5 mM for 14 days. Conditioned media (CM was collected on day 2 (non-decidualized CM and 14 (decidualized CM of treatment. Isolated primary EVT cultured on Matrigel™ were treated with media control, non-decidualized or decidualized CM for 16 h. EVT CM was fractionated for proteins <30 kDa using size-exclusion affinity nanoparticles (SEAN before trypsin digestion and HPLC-MS/MS. 43 proteins produced by EVT were identified; 14 not previously known to be expressed in the placenta and 12 which had previously been associated with diseases of pregnancy including preeclampsia. Profilin 1, lysosome associated membrane glycoprotein 1 (LAMP1, dipeptidyl peptidase 1 (DPP1/cathepsin C and annexin A2 expression by interstitial EVT in vivo was validated by immunhistochemistry. Decidual CM regulation in vitro was validated by western blotting: decidualized CM upregulated profilin 1 in EVT CM and non-decidualized CM upregulated annexin A2 in EVT CM and pro-DPP1 in EVT cell lysate. Here, non-decidualized factors induced protease expression by EVT suggesting that non-decidualized factors may induce a pro-inflammatory cascade. Preeclampsia is a pro

  8. Alterations of CNS structure & function by charged particle radiation & resultant oxidative stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Gregory; Chang, Polly; Favre, Cecile; Fike, John; Komarova, Natalia; Limoli, Charles; Mao, Xiao-Wen; Obenaus, Andre; Raber, Jacob; Spigelman, Igor; Soltesz, Ivan; Song, Sheng-Kwei; Stampanoni, Marco; Vlkolinsky, Roman; Wodarz, Dominik

    The NSCOR program project is transitioning from establishing the existence of CNS responses to low doses of charged particles, to an investigation of mechanisms underlying these changes and extending the irradiation paradigm to more space-like exposures. In earlier experiments we examined radiation responses of the mouse brain (hippocampus) following exposure to 250 MeV protons and 600 MeV/n iron ions. Our key findings on structural changes were: 1) Significant dose and time dependent loss of en-dothelial cells and microvessel network remodeling occurs suggesting that vascular insufficiency is produced. 2) Significant dose dependent losses of neural precursor cells were observed in a lineage specific pattern which may be associated with cognitive impairment. 3) Evaluation of DNA damage showed dose and time dependent accumulation of mutations with region-specific mutation structures and gene expression profiling demonstrated activation of neurotrophic and adhesion factors as well as chemokine receptors associated with inflammation. Our key find-ings on functional changes were: 1) Time and dose dependent modifications to neural output expressed as enhanced excitability but reduced synaptic efficacy and plasticity (including long term potentiation). 2) Intrinsic membrane properties of neurons were not significantly modi-fied by radiation exposure but pharmacological treatments demonstrated changes in inhibitory synapses. 3) MRI imaging visualized brain structural changes based on altered water diffu-sion properties and patterns were consistent with demyelination or gliosis. Our key findings on neurodegeneration and fidelity of homeostasis were: 1) APP23 transgenic mice exhibited accelerated APP-type electrophysiological pathology over several months. 2) Microvessel net-work changes following irradiation were suggestive of poor tissue oxygenation. 3) The ability of the brain to respond a controlled septic shock was altered by irradiation; the septic shock reactions

  9. Effects of Irradiation on the Structure-activity Relationship of Konjac Glucomannan Molecular Chain Membrane

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WU Chun-Hua; PENG Shu-Hui; WEN Cheng-Rong; WANG Li-Xia; XIONG Bo; LIU Ya-Nan; FAN Lin-Lin; YAO Min-Na; PANG Jie

    2012-01-01

    To know the effects of irradiation on the konjac glucomannan (KGM) molecular chain membrane, KGM membrane solution was treated with the irradiation dose of 0-20 kGy in this study, and the structure and properties of KGM membrane were analyzed with Infrared spectrum, Raman spectrum, X-ray, SEM scanning and so on. The results revealed that the effects of different irradiation doses on the KGM molecular chain structure were different. Higher irradiation dose (20 kGy) resulted in partial damage against KGM membrane crystal structure, and there was no obvious change for the amorphous structure; with membrane property test, the tensile strength of KGM membrane gradually increased with the increase of irradiation dose and its elongation at break reduced, but these changes were not significant, WVP value reduced; with SEM, the membrane surface treated with irradiation was smoother even than the membrane without treatment. In addition, when increasing the irradiation dose, membrane surface became more even, and arrangement was more orderly and compact. KGM membrane nrooerties, and it is an ideal Irradiation modification could effectively improve the modification method.

  10. Dynamical and structural properties of lipid membranes in relation to liposomal drug delivery systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Kent; Høyrup, Lise Pernille Kristine; Pedersen, Tina B.; Mouritsen, Ole G.

    The structural and dynamical properties of DPPC liposomes containing lipopolymers (PEG-lipids) and charged DPPS lipids have been,studied in relation to the lipid membrane interaction of enzymes and peptides. The results suggest that both the lipid membrane structure and dynamics and in particular...

  11. A Bilayered Structure Comprised of Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes for Desalination by Membrane Distillation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhadra, Madhuleena; Roy, Sagar; Mitra, Somenath

    2016-08-01

    The development of a novel carbon nanotube (CNT) immobilized membrane comprised of a double-layer structure is presented for water desalination by membrane distillation. The bilayered structure is comprised of CNTs functionalized with a hydrophobic octadecyl amine group on the feed side and carboxylated CNTs on the permeate side. The latter is more hydrophilic. The hydrophobic CNTs provide higher water vapor permeation, while the hydrophilic CNTs facilitate the condensation of water vapor. Together, these led to superior performance, and flux in a direct contact membrane distillation mode was found to be as high as 121 kg/m(2)h at 80 °C. The bilayered membrane represented an enhancement of 70% over the unmodified membrane and 37% over a membrane which had a monolayered structure where only the feed side was CNT-modified. PMID:27387851

  12. Effect of Structure on the Interactions between Five Natural Antimicrobial Compounds and Phospholipids of Bacterial Cell Membrane on Model Monolayers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stella W. Nowotarska

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Monolayers composed of bacterial phospholipids were used as model membranes to study interactions of the naturally occurring phenolic compounds 2,5-dihydroxybenzaldehyde and 2-hydroxy-5-methoxybenzaldehyde, and the plant essential oil compounds carvacrol, cinnamaldehyde, and geraniol, previously found to be active against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative pathogenic microorganisms. The lipid monolayers consist of 1,2-dihexadecanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine (DPPE, 1,2-dihexa- decanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phospho-(1'-rac-glycerol (DPPG, and 1,1',2,2'-tetratetradecanoyl cardiolipin (cardiolipin. Surface pressure–area (π-A and surface potential–area (Δψ-A isotherms were measured to monitor changes in the thermodynamic and physical properties of the lipid monolayers. Results of the study indicated that the five compounds modified the three lipid monolayer structures by integrating into the monolayer, forming aggregates of antimicrobial –lipid complexes, reducing the packing effectiveness of the lipids, increasing the membrane fluidity, and altering the total dipole moment in the monolayer membrane model. The interactions of the five antimicrobial compounds with bacterial phospholipids depended on both the structure of the antimicrobials and the composition of the monolayers. The observed experimental results provide insight into the mechanism of the molecular interactions between naturally-occurring antimicrobial compounds and phospholipids of the bacterial cell membrane that govern activities.

  13. Altered PLP1 splicing causes hypomyelination of early myelinating structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kevelam, Sietske H; Taube, Jennifer R; van Spaendonk, Rosalina M L;

    2015-01-01

    causal mutations. In silico analysis of effects of the mutations on splicing and RNA folding was performed. In vitro gene splicing was examined in RNA from patients' fibroblasts and an immortalized immature oligodendrocyte cell line after transfection with mutant minigene splicing constructs. RESULTS......: All patients had unusual hemizygous mutations of PLP1 located in exon 3B (one deletion, one missense and two silent), which is spliced out in isoform DM20, or in intron 3 (five mutations). The deletion led to truncation of PLP1, but not DM20. Four mutations were predicted to affect PLP1/DM20...... alternative splicing by creating exonic splicing silencer motifs or new splice donor sites or by affecting the local RNA structure of the PLP1 splice donor site. Four deep intronic mutations were predicted to destabilize a long-distance interaction structure in the secondary PLP1 RNA fragment involved in...

  14. Import to the inner nuclear membrane : a structural perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hapsari, Rizqiya Astri

    2016-01-01

    In all eukaryotic cell, form yeast to humans, the Nuclear Pore Complexes provide the main gateway to the nuclear interior. While the transport of soluble cargo’s in and out of the nucleus is relatively well understood, the transport of membrane proteins that reside in the membranes of the nuclear en

  15. Do artificial structures alter marine invertebrate genetic makeup?

    OpenAIRE

    Fauvelot, Cecile; Costantini, Federica; Virgilio, Massimiliano; Abbiati, Marco

    2012-01-01

    Human-made structures are increasingly built in marine coastal habitats for a variety of purposes. Offshore oil and gas production platforms are among the largest examples. Yet, biological effects of these increasing density artificial substrata are under evaluated. The objective of our study is to investigate the possible role of offshore platforms in modifying the genetic composition of populations of natural rocky shores species. The serpulid Pomatoceros triqueter was used as a model, and ...

  16. Altered Structural Brain Networks in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Im, Kiho; Ahtam, Banu; Haehn, Daniel; Peters, Jurriaan M; Warfield, Simon K; Sahin, Mustafa; Ellen Grant, P

    2016-05-01

    Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is characterized by benign hamartomas in multiple organs including the brain and its clinical phenotypes may be associated with abnormal neural connections. We aimed to provide the first detailed findings on disrupted structural brain networks in TSC patients. Structural whole-brain connectivity maps were constructed using structural and diffusion MRI in 20 TSC (age range: 3-24 years) and 20 typically developing (TD; 3-23 years) subjects. We assessed global (short- and long-association and interhemispheric fibers) and regional white matter connectivity, and performed graph theoretical analysis using gyral pattern- and atlas-based node parcellations. Significantly higher mean diffusivity (MD) was shown in TSC patients than in TD controls throughout the whole brain and positively correlated with tuber load severity. A significant increase in MD was mainly influenced by an increase in radial diffusivity. Furthermore, interhemispheric connectivity was particularly reduced in TSC, which leads to increased network segregation within hemispheres. TSC patients with developmental delay (DD) showed significantly higher MD than those without DD primarily in intrahemispheric connections. Our analysis allows non-biased determination of differential white matter involvement, which may provide better measures of "lesion load" and lead to a better understanding of disease mechanisms. PMID:25750257

  17. Experimental sulfate amendment alters peatland bacterial community structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strickman, R J S; Fulthorpe, R R; Coleman Wasik, J K; Engstrom, D R; Mitchell, C P J

    2016-10-01

    As part of a long-term, peatland-scale sulfate addition experiment, the impact of varying sulfate deposition on bacterial community responses was assessed using 16S tag encoded pyrosequencing. In three separate areas of the peatland, sulfate manipulations included an eight year quadrupling of atmospheric sulfate deposition (experimental), a 3-year recovery to background deposition following 5years of elevated deposition (recovery), and a control area. Peat concentrations of methylmercury (MeHg), a bioaccumulative neurotoxin, were measured, the production of which is attributable to a growing list of microorganisms, including many sulfate-reducing Deltaproteobacteria. The total bacterial and Deltaproteobacterial community structures in the experimental treatment differed significantly from those in the control and recovery treatments that were either indistinguishable or very similar to one another. Notably, the relatively rapid return (within three years) of bacterial community structure in the recovery treatment to a state similar to the control, demonstrates significant resilience of the peatland bacterial community to changes in atmospheric sulfate deposition. Changes in MeHg accumulation between sulfate treatments correlated with changes in the Deltaproteobacterial community, suggesting that sulfate may affect MeHg production through changes in the community structure of this group. PMID:27267720

  18. MUNI Ways and Structures Building Integrated Solar Membrane Project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, Randall

    2014-07-03

    The initial goal of the MUNI Ways and Structures Building Integrated Solar Membrane Installation Project was for the City and County of San Francisco (CCSF) to gain experience using the integrated higher efficiency solar photovoltaic (PV) single-ply membrane product, as it differs from the conventional, low efficiency, thin-film PV products, to determine the feasibility of success of larger deployment. As several of CCSF’s municipal rooftops are constrained with respect to weight restrictions, staff of the Energy Generation Group of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) proposed to install a solar PV system using single-ply membrane The installation of the 100 kW (DC-STC) lightweight photo voltaic (PV) system at the MUNI Ways and Structures Center (700 Pennsylvania Ave., San Francisco) is a continuation of the commitment of the City and County of San Francisco (CCSF) to increase the pace of municipal solar development, and serve its municipal facilities with clean renewable energy. The fourteen (14) solar photovoltaic systems that have already been installed at CCSF municipal facilities are assisting in the reduction of fossil-fuel use, and reduction of greenhouse gases from fossil combustion. The MUNI Ways & Structures Center roof has a relatively low weight-bearing capacity (3.25 pounds per square foot) and use of traditional crystalline panels was therefore rejected. Consequently it was decided to use the best available highest efficiency Building-Integrated PV (BIPV) technology, with consideration for reliability and experience of the manufacturer which can meet the low weight-bearing capacity criteria. The original goal of the project was to provide an opportunity to monitor the results of the BIPV technology and compare these results to other City and County of San Francisco installed PV systems. The MUNI Ways and Structures Center was acquired from the Cookson Doors Company, which had run the Center for many decades. The building was

  19. Structural and Functional Proteomic Analysis of a Developing Energy Transducing Membrane

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Niederman, Robert A

    2012-06-04

    While much is known about the light reactions of photosynthesis in purple bacteria, comparatively little information is available on how the requisite integral membrane proteins are assembled, their patterns of cellular localization are established or their apoproteins cooperate with numerous assembly factors in their insertion into the growing intracytoplasmic membrane (ICM). This problem was approached through a detailed structural and functional proteomic analysis of ICM assembly process in the well-characterized purple bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides. Proteomic approaches have focused upon identification of membrane proteins temporally expressed during ICM development and spatially localized in both membrane growth initiation sites and in mature ICM vesicles. Protocols were established for ICM induction under reduced aeration and ICM remodeling in cells adapting to low intensity illumination, which permitted isolation, in sucrose density gradients, of ICM growth initiation sites as an upper pigmented band (UPB) and mature ICM vesicles as the main (chromatophore) band. Non-denaturing clear native gel electrophoresis (CNE) of these isolated membrane fractions gave rise to pigmented bands containing the peripheral light-harvesting 2 (LH2) antenna and the reaction center-light-harvesting 1 (RC-LH1) core complex, together with a full array of other ICM proteins, which were subjected to proteomic analysis. Proteomic analysis of the gel bands from chromatophores revealed developmental changes including increasing levels of the LH2 complex as ICM development proceeded, as well as a large array of other associated proteins including high spectral counts for the F1FO– ATP synthase subunits, given the inability to detect this coupling factor, as well as the more abundant cytochrome bc1 complex by atomic force microscopy (AFM). Significant levels of general membrane assembly factors were encountered, as well as high counts for RSP6124, a protein of unknown

  20. Abdominal Pain, the Adolescent and Altered Brain Structure and Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubbard, Catherine S; Becerra, Lino; Heinz, Nicole; Ludwick, Allison; Rasooly, Tali; Wu, Rina; Johnson, Adriana; Schechter, Neil L; Borsook, David; Nurko, Samuel

    2016-01-01

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder of unknown etiology. Although relatively common in children, how this condition affects brain structure and function in a pediatric population remains unclear. Here, we investigate brain changes in adolescents with IBS and healthy controls. Imaging was performed with a Siemens 3 Tesla Trio Tim MRI scanner equipped with a 32-channel head coil. A high-resolution T1-weighted anatomical scan was acquired followed by a T2-weighted functional scan. We used a surface-based morphometric approach along with a seed-based resting-state functional connectivity (RS-FC) analysis to determine if groups differed in cortical thickness and whether areas showing structural differences also showed abnormal RS-FC patterns. Patients completed the Abdominal Pain Index and the GI Module of the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory to assess abdominal pain severity and impact of GI symptoms on health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Disease duration and pain intensity were also assessed. Pediatric IBS patients, relative to controls, showed cortical thickening in the posterior cingulate (PCC), whereas cortical thinning in posterior parietal and prefrontal areas were found, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). In patients, abdominal pain severity was related to cortical thickening in the intra-abdominal area of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI), whereas HRQOL was associated with insular cortical thinning. Disease severity measures correlated with cortical thickness in bilateral DLPFC and orbitofrontal cortex. Patients also showed reduced anti-correlations between PCC and DLPFC compared to controls, a finding that may reflect aberrant connectivity between default mode and cognitive control networks. We are the first to demonstrate concomitant structural and functional brain changes associated with abdominal pain severity, HRQOL related to GI-specific symptoms, and disease-specific measures in

  1. Abdominal Pain, the Adolescent and Altered Brain Structure and Function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine S Hubbard

    Full Text Available Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS is a functional gastrointestinal (GI disorder of unknown etiology. Although relatively common in children, how this condition affects brain structure and function in a pediatric population remains unclear. Here, we investigate brain changes in adolescents with IBS and healthy controls. Imaging was performed with a Siemens 3 Tesla Trio Tim MRI scanner equipped with a 32-channel head coil. A high-resolution T1-weighted anatomical scan was acquired followed by a T2-weighted functional scan. We used a surface-based morphometric approach along with a seed-based resting-state functional connectivity (RS-FC analysis to determine if groups differed in cortical thickness and whether areas showing structural differences also showed abnormal RS-FC patterns. Patients completed the Abdominal Pain Index and the GI Module of the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory to assess abdominal pain severity and impact of GI symptoms on health-related quality of life (HRQOL. Disease duration and pain intensity were also assessed. Pediatric IBS patients, relative to controls, showed cortical thickening in the posterior cingulate (PCC, whereas cortical thinning in posterior parietal and prefrontal areas were found, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC. In patients, abdominal pain severity was related to cortical thickening in the intra-abdominal area of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI, whereas HRQOL was associated with insular cortical thinning. Disease severity measures correlated with cortical thickness in bilateral DLPFC and orbitofrontal cortex. Patients also showed reduced anti-correlations between PCC and DLPFC compared to controls, a finding that may reflect aberrant connectivity between default mode and cognitive control networks. We are the first to demonstrate concomitant structural and functional brain changes associated with abdominal pain severity, HRQOL related to GI-specific symptoms, and disease

  2. Investigation of lipid membrane macro- and micro-structure using calorimetry and computer simulation: structural and functional relationships

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Kent; Mouritsen, Ole G.

    The lipid bilayer part of biological membranes is a complex lipid mixture displaying cooperative phenomena. By means of differential scanning calorimetry and computer simulation techniques, the equilibrium and non-equilibrium properties of the large assembly of mutually interacting amphiphilic...... lead to the formation of a heterogeneous lateral bilayer structure composed of dynamic lipid domains and differentiated bilayer regions. In addition, the non-equilibrium dynamic ordering process of coexisting phases can give rise to the formation of local lipid structures on various length- and time......-scales. The results suggest that the structural and dynamical lipid bilayer behavior and in particular the appearance of small-scale lipid structures might be of importance for membrane functionality, e.g., membrane compartmentalization, trails-membrane permeability, and the activity of membrane...

  3. Structural models of the membrane anchors of envelope glycoproteins E1 and E2 from pestiviruses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The membrane anchors of viral envelope proteins play essential roles in cell entry. Recent crystal structures of the ectodomain of envelope protein E2 from a pestivirus suggest that E2 belongs to a novel structural class of membrane fusion machinery. Based on geometric constraints from the E2 structures, we generated atomic models of the E1 and E2 membrane anchors using computational approaches. The E1 anchor contains two amphipathic perimembrane helices and one transmembrane helix; the E2 anchor contains a short helical hairpin stabilized in the membrane by an arginine residue, similar to flaviviruses. A pair of histidine residues in the E2 ectodomain may participate in pH sensing. The proposed atomic models point to Cys987 in E2 as the site of disulfide bond linkage with E1 to form E1–E2 heterodimers. The membrane anchor models provide structural constraints for the disulfide bonding pattern and overall backbone conformation of the E1 ectodomain. - Highlights: • Structures of pestivirus E2 proteins impose constraints on E1, E2 membrane anchors. • Atomic models of the E1 and E2 membrane anchors were generated in silico. • A “snorkeling” arginine completes the short helical hairpin in the E2 membrane anchor. • Roles in pH sensing and E1–E2 disulfide bond formation are proposed for E1 residues. • Implications for E1 ectodomain structure and disulfide bonding pattern are discussed

  4. Structural models of the membrane anchors of envelope glycoproteins E1 and E2 from pestiviruses

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Jimin, E-mail: jimin.wang@yale.edu; Li, Yue; Modis, Yorgo, E-mail: yorgo.modis@yale.edu

    2014-04-15

    The membrane anchors of viral envelope proteins play essential roles in cell entry. Recent crystal structures of the ectodomain of envelope protein E2 from a pestivirus suggest that E2 belongs to a novel structural class of membrane fusion machinery. Based on geometric constraints from the E2 structures, we generated atomic models of the E1 and E2 membrane anchors using computational approaches. The E1 anchor contains two amphipathic perimembrane helices and one transmembrane helix; the E2 anchor contains a short helical hairpin stabilized in the membrane by an arginine residue, similar to flaviviruses. A pair of histidine residues in the E2 ectodomain may participate in pH sensing. The proposed atomic models point to Cys987 in E2 as the site of disulfide bond linkage with E1 to form E1–E2 heterodimers. The membrane anchor models provide structural constraints for the disulfide bonding pattern and overall backbone conformation of the E1 ectodomain. - Highlights: • Structures of pestivirus E2 proteins impose constraints on E1, E2 membrane anchors. • Atomic models of the E1 and E2 membrane anchors were generated in silico. • A “snorkeling” arginine completes the short helical hairpin in the E2 membrane anchor. • Roles in pH sensing and E1–E2 disulfide bond formation are proposed for E1 residues. • Implications for E1 ectodomain structure and disulfide bonding pattern are discussed.

  5. Structural and functional changes induced in the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor by membrane phospholipids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Carvajal, Asia M; Encinar, José A; Poveda, José Antonio; de Juan, Entilio; Martínez-Pinna, Juan; Ivorra, Isabel; Ferragut, José Antonio; Morales, Andrés; González-Ros, José Manuel

    2006-01-01

    Ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) constitute an important family of complex membrane proteins acting as receptors for neurotransmitters (Barnard, 1992; Ortells and Lunt, 1995). The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) from Torpedo is the most extensively studied member of the LGIC family and consists of a pentameric transmembrane glycoprotein composed of four different polypeptide subunits (alpha, beta, gamma, and delta) in a 2:1:1:1 stoichiometry (Galzi and Changeux, 1995; Hucho et al., 1996) that are arranged pseudosymmetrically around a central cation-selective ion channel. Conformational transitions, from the closed (nonconducting), to agonist-induced open (ion-conducting), to desensitized (nonconducting) states, are critical for functioning of the nAChR (Karlin, 2002). The ability of the nAChR to undergo these transitions is profoundly influenced by the lipid composition of the bilayer (Barrantes, 2004). Despite existing information on lipid dependence of AChR function, no satisfactory explanation has been given on the molecular events by which specific lipids exert such effects on the activity of an integral membrane protein. To date, several hypotheses have been entertained, including (1) indirect effects of lipids through the alteration of properties of the bilayer, such as fluidity (an optimal fluidity hypothesis [Fong and McNamee, 1986]) or membrane curvature and lateral pressure (Cantor, 1997; de Kruijff, 1997), or (2) direct effects through binding of lipids to defined sites on the transmembrane portion of the protein (Jones and McNamee, 1988; Blanton and Wang, 1990; Fernández et al., 1993; Fernández-Ballester et al., 1994), which has led to the postulation of a possible role of certain lipids as peculiar allosteric ligands of the protein. In this paper we have reconstituted purified AChRs from Torpedo into complex multicomponent lipid vesicles in which the phospholipid composition has been systematically altered. Stopped-flow rapid kinetics of

  6. Membrane interaction and structure of the transmembrane domain of influenza hemagglutinin and its fusion peptide complex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Chi-Hui

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background To study the organization and interaction with the fusion domain (or fusion peptide, FP of the transmembrane domain (TMD of influenza virus envelope glycoprotein for its role in membrane fusion which is also essential in the cellular trafficking of biomolecules and sperm-egg fusion. Results The fluorescence and gel electrophoresis experiments revealed a tight self-assembly of TMD in the model membrane. A weak but non-random interaction between TMD and FP in the membrane was found. In the complex, the central TMD oligomer was packed by FP in an antiparallel fashion. FP insertion into the membrane was altered by binding to TMD. An infrared study exhibited an enhanced membrane perturbation by the complex formation. A model was built to illustrate the role of TMD in the late stages of influenza virus-mediated membrane fusion reaction. Conclusion The TMD oligomer anchors the fusion protein in the membrane with minimal destabilization to the membrane. Upon associating with FP, the complex exerts a synergistic effect on the membrane perturbation. This effect is likely to contribute to the complete membrane fusion during the late phase of fusion protein-induced fusion cascade. The results presented in the work characterize the nature of the interaction of TMD with the membrane and TMD in a complex with FP in the steps leading to pore initiation and dilation during virus-induced fusion. Our data and proposed fusion model highlight the key role of TMD-FP interaction and have implications on the fusion reaction mediated by other type I viral fusion proteins. Understanding the molecular mechanism of membrane fusion may assist in the design of anti-viral drugs.

  7. Structural Aspects of Bacterial Outer Membrane Protein Assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calmettes, Charles; Judd, Andrew; Moraes, Trevor F

    2015-01-01

    The outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria is predominantly populated by β-Barrel proteins and lipid anchored proteins that serve a variety of biological functions. The proper folding and assembly of these proteins is essential for bacterial viability and often plays a critical role in virulence and pathogenesis. The β-barrel assembly machinery (Bam) complex is responsible for the proper assembly of β-barrels into the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria, whereas the localization of lipoproteins (Lol) system is required for proper targeting of lipoproteins to the outer membrane. PMID:26621472

  8. Long-term-stable ether-lipid vs conventional ester-lipid bicelles in oriented solid-state NMR: altered structural information in studies of antimicrobial peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertelsen, Kresten; Vad, Brian; Nielsen, Erik H; Hansen, Sara K; Skrydstrup, Troels; Otzen, Daniel E; Vosegaard, Thomas; Nielsen, Niels Chr

    2011-03-01

    Recently, ether lipids have been introduced as long-term stable alternatives to the more natural, albeit easier degradable, ester lipids in the preparation of oriented lipid bilayers and bicelles for oriented-sample solid-state NMR spectroscopy. Here we report that ether lipids such as the frequently used 14-O-PC (1,2-di-O-tetradecyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine) may induce significant changes in the structure and dynamics, including altered interaction between peptides and lipids relative to what is observed with the more conventionally used DMPC (1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine) bilayers. Such effects are demonstrated for the antimicrobial peptide novicidin, for which 2D separate-local-field NMR and circular dichroism experiments reveal significant structural/conformational differences for the peptide in the two different lipid systems. Likewise, we observe altered secondary structure and different temperature-dependent membrane anchoring for the antimicrobial peptide alamethicin depending on whether the peptide is reconstituted into ester or ether lipids. Such observations are not particularly surprising considering the significant difference of the lipids in the phosphorus headgroup and they may provide important new insight into the delicate peptide-membrane interactions in the systems studied. In contrast, these observations reinforce the need to carefully consider potential structural changes in addition to long-term stability prior to the selection of membrane environment of membrane proteins in the analysis of their structure and dynamics. In more general terms, the results underscore the necessity in structural biology to address both the protein and its environments in studies relating structure to function. PMID:21309516

  9. BCL::MP-Fold: membrane protein structure prediction guided by EPR restraints

    CERN Document Server

    Fischer, Axel Walter; Woetzel, Nils; Karakas, Mert; Weiner, Brian; Meiler, Jens

    2015-01-01

    For many membrane proteins the determination of their topology remains a challenge for methods like X-ray crystallography and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy has evolved as an alternative technique to study structure and dynamics of membrane proteins. The present study demonstrates the feasibility of membrane protein topology determination using limited EPR distance and accessibility measurements. The BCL::MP-Fold (BioChemical Library membrane protein fold) algorithm assembles secondary structure elements (SSEs) in the membrane using a Monte Carlo Metropolis (MCM) approach. Sampled models are evaluated using knowledge-based potential functions and agreement with the EPR data and a knowledge-based energy function. Twenty-nine membrane proteins of up to 696 residues are used to test the algorithm. The RMSD100 value of the most accurate model is better than 8{\\AA} for twenty-seven, better than 6{\\AA} for twenty-two and better than 4{\\AA} for fifte...

  10. Bedfordshire County Structure Plan. Proposed alterations -Public participation statement. Policy 97: Nuclear waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The document describes steps taken, in accord with the Town and Country Planning Act 1971, by Bedfordshire County Council, submitting proposed Alterations to the County Structure Plan to the Secretary of State for the Environment. When approving the submission the Council decided to add an additional Alteration dealing with nuclear waste: as this had not been the subject of public consultation the Council decided to seek the public's views on the proposal before submitting the Alteration. The arrangements for consultation and a list of persons and organizations consulted are given, together with the arrangements for considering comments. (U.K.)

  11. Bedfordshire County Structure Plan. Proposed alterations. Results of public consultation. Policy 97: Nuclear waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The document refers to Alterations to the County Structure Plan, proposed by Bedfordshire County Council and submitted to the Secretary of State for the Environment. An additional Alteration initiated at the County Council's meeting, dealing with nuclear waste, had not been the subject of prior public consultation. Consultation had since been arranged, and the present document summarises the responses that have been received, and describes the next action to be taken. (U.K.)

  12. Structure and Orientation of a Voltage-Sensor Toxin in Lipid Membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Jung, Hyun Ho; Jung, Hoi Jong; Milescu, Mirela; Lee, Chul Won; Lee, Seungkyu; Lee, Ju Yeon; Eu, Young-Jae; Kim, Ha Hyung; Swartz, Kenton J.; Kim, Jae Il

    2010-01-01

    Amphipathic protein toxins from tarantula venom inhibit voltage-activated potassium (Kv) channels by binding to a critical helix-turn-helix motif termed the voltage sensor paddle. Although these toxins partition into membranes to bind the paddle motif, their structure and orientation within the membrane are unknown. We investigated the interaction of a tarantula toxin named SGTx with membranes using both fluorescence and NMR spectroscopy. Depth-dependent fluorescence-quenching experiments wit...

  13. Deformation analysis of a film-overlapped micro-pump membrane structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A novel approach is developed to study a film-overlapped membrane structure. Meanwhile, the established model is employed to design the micro-pump membrane structure and to evaluate its pumping efficiency. Two-dimensional coupling effects between the overlapping actuator films and the deformable membrane are thoroughly investigated, including the influences on the membrane from the overlapping films' elongation effects, Poisson's ratio effects and shear strain effects. Overall deformations and interactions for the three-layer membrane structures are accurately calculated through exercising the developed model, in contrast to what difficulties are usually encountered in carrying out FEM methods with very thin elements meshed for the actuator films. Furthermore, this study demonstrates that the high stiffness of the actuating metal films needs to be reflected in the equivalent stiffness of the membrane structures, especially when the sizes of the actuator films become compatible with the sizes of the membranes. Hence, the optimal micro-pumping efficiency of a membrane structure is acquired upon exercising the developed model, and larger sizes of the actuating films do not definitely obtain larger pumping efficiencies for the electromagnetically actuated micro-pumps

  14. Structure and Properties of Polytetrafluorethylene and Polyurethane Layered Membrane for Protective Clothing

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents a new idea for intensifying protective and stretch recovery properties of micro porous polytetrafluorethylene and hydrophilic polyurethane (PTFE/PU) layered membrane through a co-stretching process. The structure and properties of co-stretching PTFE/PU layered membrane and coated PTFE/PU layered membrane by means of directly coating the PU on the PTFE membrane were investigated using Electron Microscope, Universal Materials Testing Machine, and the water vapor permeability (WVP) was measured according to absorption method of water vapor of GB/T 12704 - 91. Contrasted to PU coating process, the PU membrane on the co-stretching PTFE/PU membrane is nonporous because of heat treatment process, which can prevent the SARS virus from permeating the Co-stretching PTFE/PU membrane. The stretch and recovery properties of the Co-stretching PTFE/PU membrane is at least 66% after being stretched to 50% of its original length in transverse directions and that of the coated PTFE/PU membrane is 52%. The WVP of the Coresults suggest that when Co-stretching PTFE/PU membrane is laminated to a stretchable fabric, the fabric would have excellent stretch and recovery properties while waterproof and being permeable to water vapor. So, the Costretching PTFE/PU membrane laminated fabric will be a comfortable protective clothing material.

  15. Membrane Structure Studies by Means of Small-Angle Neutron Scattering (SANS)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The basic model for membrane structure--a lipid bilayer with imbedded proteins--was formulated 35 years ago, however the detailed structure is still under active investigation using a variety of physical, chemical and computational techniques. Every biologically active cell is encapsulated by a plasma membrane with most cells also equipped with an extensive intracellular membrane system. The plasma membrane is an important boundary between the cytoplasm of the cell and the external environment, and selectively isolates the cell from that environment. Passive diffusion and/or active transport mechanisms are provided for water, ions, substrates etc. which are vital for cell metabolism and viability. Membranes also facilitate excretion of substances either as useful cellular products or as waste. Despite their complexity and diverse function, plasma membranes from quite different cells have surprisingly similar compositions. A typical membrane structure consists of a phospholipid bilayer with a number of proteins scattered throughout, along with carbohydrates (glycoproteins), glycolipids and sterols. The plasma membranes of most eukaryotic cells contain approximately equal weights of lipid and protein, which corresponds to about 100 lipid molecules per protein molecule. Clearly, lipids are a major constituent and the study of their structure and function in isolation provides valuable insight into the more complex intact multicomponent membrane. The membrane bound protein is the other major constituent and is a very active area of research for a number of reasons including the fact that over 60% of modern drugs act on their receptor sites. The interaction between the protein and the supporting lipid bilayer is clearly of major importance. Neutron scattering is a powerful technique for exploring the structure of membranes, either as reconstituted membranes formed from well characterised lipids, or as intact membranes isolated from selected biological systems. A brief

  16. An innovative methodology for measurement of stress distribution of inflatable membrane structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The inflatable membrane structure has been widely used in the fields of civil building, industrial building, airship, super pressure balloon and spacecraft. It is important to measure the stress distribution of the inflatable membrane structure because it influences the safety of the structural design. This paper presents an innovative methodology for the measurement and determination of the stress distribution of the inflatable membrane structure under different internal pressures, combining photogrammetry and the force-finding method. The shape of the inflatable membrane structure is maintained by the use of pressurized air, and the internal pressure is controlled and measured by means of an automatic pressure control system. The 3D coordinates of the marking points pasted on the membrane surface are acquired by three photographs captured from three cameras based on photogrammetry. After digitizing the markings on the photographs, the 3D curved surfaces are rebuilt. The continuous membrane surfaces are discretized into quadrilateral mesh and simulated by membrane links to calculate the stress distributions using the force-finding method. The internal pressure is simplified to the external node forces in the normal direction according to the contributory area of the node. Once the geometry x, the external force r and the topology C are obtained, the unknown force densities q in each link can be determined. Therefore, the stress distributions of the inflatable membrane structure can be calculated, combining the linear adjustment theory and the force density method based on the force equilibrium of inflated internal pressure and membrane internal force without considering the mechanical properties of the constitutive material. As the use of the inflatable membrane structure is attractive in the field of civil building, an ethylene-tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE) cushion is used with the measurement model to validate the proposed methodology. The comparisons between the

  17. An innovative methodology for measurement of stress distribution of inflatable membrane structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Bing; Chen, Wujun; Hu, Jianhui; Chen, Jianwen; Qiu, Zhenyu; Zhou, Jinyu; Gao, Chengjun

    2016-02-01

    The inflatable membrane structure has been widely used in the fields of civil building, industrial building, airship, super pressure balloon and spacecraft. It is important to measure the stress distribution of the inflatable membrane structure because it influences the safety of the structural design. This paper presents an innovative methodology for the measurement and determination of the stress distribution of the inflatable membrane structure under different internal pressures, combining photogrammetry and the force-finding method. The shape of the inflatable membrane structure is maintained by the use of pressurized air, and the internal pressure is controlled and measured by means of an automatic pressure control system. The 3D coordinates of the marking points pasted on the membrane surface are acquired by three photographs captured from three cameras based on photogrammetry. After digitizing the markings on the photographs, the 3D curved surfaces are rebuilt. The continuous membrane surfaces are discretized into quadrilateral mesh and simulated by membrane links to calculate the stress distributions using the force-finding method. The internal pressure is simplified to the external node forces in the normal direction according to the contributory area of the node. Once the geometry x, the external force r and the topology C are obtained, the unknown force densities q in each link can be determined. Therefore, the stress distributions of the inflatable membrane structure can be calculated, combining the linear adjustment theory and the force density method based on the force equilibrium of inflated internal pressure and membrane internal force without considering the mechanical properties of the constitutive material. As the use of the inflatable membrane structure is attractive in the field of civil building, an ethylene-tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE) cushion is used with the measurement model to validate the proposed methodology. The comparisons between the

  18. Structural elucidation of the interaction between neurodegenerative disease-related tau protein with model lipid membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Emmalee M.

    A protein's sequence of amino acids determines how it folds. That folded structure is linked to protein function, and misfolding to dysfunction. Protein misfolding and aggregation into beta-sheet rich fibrillar aggregates is connected with over 20 neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease (AD). AD is characterized in part by misfolding, aggregation and deposition of the microtubule associated tau protein into neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs). However, two questions remain: What is tau's fibrillization mechanism, and what is tau's cytotoxicity mechanism? Tau is prone to heterogeneous interactions, including with lipid membranes. Lipids have been found in NFTs, anionic lipid vesicles induced aggregation of the microtubule binding domain of tau, and other protein aggregates induced ion permeability in cells. This evidence prompted our investigation of tau's interaction with model lipid membranes to elucidate the structural perturbations those interactions induced in tau protein and in the membrane. We show that although tau is highly charged and soluble, it is highly surface active and preferentially interacts with anionic membranes. To resolve molecular-scale structural details of tau and model membranes, we utilized X-ray and neutron scattering techniques. X-ray reflectivity indicated tau aggregated at air/water and anionic lipid membrane interfaces and penetrated into membranes. More significantly, membrane interfaces induced tau protein to partially adopt a more compact conformation with density similar to folded protein and ordered structure characteristic of beta-sheet formation. This suggests possible membrane-based mechanisms of tau aggregation. Membrane morphological changes were seen using fluorescence microscopy, and X-ray scattering techniques showed tau completely disrupts anionic membranes, suggesting an aggregate-based cytotoxicity mechanism. Further investigation of protein constructs and a "hyperphosphorylation" disease mimic helped

  19. Polymer electrolyte membranes from fluorinated polyisoprene-block-sulfonated polystyrene: Membrane structure and transport properties

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sodeye, Akinbode [Department of Polymer Science and Engineering, University of Massachusetts; Huang, Tianzi [University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK); Gido, Samuel [University of Massachusetts, Amherst; Mays, Jimmy [ORNL

    2011-01-01

    With a view to optimizing morphology and ultimately properties, membranes have been cast from relatively inexpensive block copolymer ionomers of fluorinated polyisoprene-block-sulfonated polystyrene (FISS) with various sulfonation levels, in both the acid form and the cesium neutralized form. The morphology of these membranes was characterized by transmission electron microscopy and ultra-small angle X-ray scattering, as well as water uptake, proton conductivity and methanol permeability within the temperature range from 20 to 60 C. Random phase separated morphologies were obtained for all samples except the cesium sample with 50 mol% sulfonation. The transport properties increased with increasing degree of sulfonation and temperature for all samples. The acid form samples absorbed more water than the cesium samples with a maximum swelling of 595% recorded at 60 C for the acid sample having 50 mol% sulfonation. Methanol permeability for the latter sample was more than an order of magnitude less than for Nafion 112 but so was the proton conductivity within the plane of the membrane at 20 C. Across the plane of the membrane this sample had half the conductivity of Nafion 112 at 60 C.

  20. A Subset of Membrane-Altering Agents and γ-Secretase Modulators Provoke Nonsubstrate Cleavage by Rhomboid Proteases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siniša Urban

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Rhomboid proteases are integral membrane enzymes that regulate cell signaling, adhesion, and organelle homeostasis pathways, making substrate specificity a key feature of their function. Interestingly, we found that perturbing the membrane pharmacologically in living cells had little effect on substrate processing but induced inappropriate cleavage of nonsubstrates by rhomboid proteases. A subclass of drugs known to modulate γ-secretase activity acted on the membrane directly and induced nonsubstrate cleavage by rhomboid proteases but left true substrate cleavage sites unaltered. These observations highlight an active role for the membrane in guiding rhomboid selectivity and caution that membrane-targeted drugs should be evaluated for cross-activity against membrane-resident enzymes that are otherwise unrelated to the intended drug target. Furthermore, some γ-secretase-modulating activity or toxicity could partly result from global membrane effects.

  1. Kinetics of structural reorganizations in multi lamellar photosynthetic membranes monitored by small-angle neutron scattering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We demonstrate the power of time-resolved small-angle neutron scattering experiments for the investigation of the structure and structural reorganizations of multi lamellar photosynthetic membranes. In addition to briefly summarizing our results on thylakoid membranes isolated from higher plants and in unicellular organisms, we discuss the advantages and technical and methodological limitations of time resolved SANS. We present a detailed and more systematical investigation of the kinetics of light-induced structural reorganizations in isolated spinach thylakoid membranes, which show how changes in the repeat distance and in the long-range order of the multi lamellar membranes can be followed with a time resolution of seconds. We also present data from comparative measurements performed on thylakoid membranes isolated from tobacco. (authors)

  2. Kinetics of structural reorganizations in multilamellar photosynthetic membranes monitored by small-angle neutron scattering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagy, Gergely; Kovács, László; Ünnep, Renáta; Zsiros, Ottó; Almásy, László; Rosta, László; Timmins, Peter; Peters, Judith; Posselt, Dorthe; Garab, Győző

    2013-07-01

    We demonstrate the power of time-resolved small-angle neutron scattering experiments for the investigation of the structure and structural reorganizations of multilamellar photosynthetic membranes. In addition to briefly summarizing our results on thylakoid membranes isolated from higher plants and in unicellular organisms, we discuss the advantages and technical and methodological limitations of time-resolved SANS. We present a detailed and more systematical investigation of the kinetics of light-induced structural reorganizations in isolated spinach thylakoid membranes, which show how changes in the repeat distance and in the long-range order of the multilamellar membranes can be followed with a time resolution of seconds. We also present data from comparative measurements performed on thylakoid membranes isolated from tobacco. PMID:23839900

  3. Arrhythmogenicity of the hypertrophied and senescent heart and relationship to membrane proteins involved in the altered calcium handling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carré, F; Rannou, F; Sainte Beuve, C; Chevalier, B; Moalic, J M; Swynghedauw, B; Charlemagne, D

    1993-10-01

    The high incidence of arrhythmias in human left ventricular hypertrophy has been well established but the mechanisms of arrhythmias are not well defined. In attempt to clarify these mechanisms, we tried to determine if a relationship might exist in the hypertrophied or senescent hearts between the incidence of arrhythmias and alterations in the gene expression of the main membrane proteins involved in the regulation of calcium movements. Holter monitoring was used in young and senescent rats where hypertrophy had been induced by aortic stenosis and hyperthyroidism (young rats) or by DOCA-salt treatment (senescent rats). Different types of spontaneous arrhythmias were detected. In the aortic stenosis group, the heart rate and the number of supraventricular premature beats were increased significantly, whereas the number of ventricular premature beats was increased in some animals but not in all. In senescent rats, the numbers of ventricular and supraventricular premature beats and the incidence of atrioventricular block were very high. At the cellular level, the density of calcium channels from the sarcolemma and of the alpha 1 subunit of the Na+/K(+)-ATPase were unchanged in the hypertrophied and senescent hearts but most of the proteins involved in the regulation of calcium movements (calcium release channel and Ca(2+)-ATPase from the sarcoplasmic reticulum, Na+/Ca2+ exchange, and beta adrenergic and muscarinic receptors from the sarcolemma) have a decreased density or activity. These changes might account for the slowing of the maximum shortening velocity and the impaired contractility of the hypertrophied and senescent hearts.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:8275524

  4. Effect of Sterol Structure on Chain Ordering of an Unsaturated Phospholipid: A 2H-NMR Study of POPC/Sterol Membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaghaghi, Mehran; Thewalt, Jenifer; Zuckermann, Martin

    2012-10-01

    The physical properties of biological membranes are considerably altered by the presence of sterols. In particular, sterols help to maintain the integrity of the cell by adjusting the fluidity of the plasma membrane. Cholesterol is in addition an important component of lipid rafts which are hypothesized to compartmentalize the cell membrane surface thereby making it possible for certain proteins to function. Using 2H-NMR spectroscopy, we studied the effect of a series of different sterols on the chain ordering of POPC, an unsaturated phospholipid present in eukaryotic cell membranes. We were able to assigned specific roles to the structural differences between the sterols by comparing the manner in which they affect the average lipid chain conformation of POPC.

  5. Investigation of structural change of purple membrane in storage by transmission electron microscope and atomic force microscope

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    The structural change of purple membrane during storage has been investigated by means of transmission electron microscope and atomic force microscope. It is found that many liposomes have spontaneously evolved from the purple membrane sheets isolated three years ago. The membrane proteins on the liposomes, bacteriorhodopsin, are still presented as trimers in 2-D hexagonal structure, which is the same as that in natural cell membrane. However, the cytoplasmic surface of purple membrane faced outside on the liposomes.

  6. Partially Fluorinated Sulfonated Poly(ether amide Fuel Cell Membranes: Influence of Chemical Structure on Membrane Properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chulsung Bae

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A series of fluorinated sulfonated poly (ether amides (SPAs were synthesized for proton exchange membrane fuel cell applications. A polycondensation reaction of 4,4’-oxydianiline, 2-sulfoterephthalic acid monosodium salt, and tetrafluorophenylene dicarboxylic acids (terephthalic and isophthalic or fluoroaliphatic dicarboxylic acids produced SPAs with sulfonation degrees of 80–90%. Controlling the feed ratio of the sulfonated and unsulfonated dicarboxylic acid monomers afforded random SPAs with ion exchange capacities between 1.7 and 2.2 meq/g and good solubility in polar aprotic solvents. Their structures were characterized using NMR and FT IR spectroscopies. Tough, flexible, and transparent films were obtained with dimethylsulfoxide using a solution casting method. Most SPA membranes with 90% sulfonation degree showed high proton conductivity (>100 mS/cm at 80 °C and 100% relative humidity. Among them, two outstanding ionomers (ODA-STA-TPA-90 and ODA-STA-IPA-90 showed proton conductivity comparable to that of Nafion 117 between 40 and 80 °C. The influence of chemical structure on the membrane properties was systematically investigated by comparing the fluorinated polymers to their hydrogenated counterparts. The results suggest that the incorporation of fluorinated moieties in the polymer backbone of the membrane reduces water absorption. High molecular weight and the resulting physical entanglement of the polymers chains played a more important role in improving stability in water, however.

  7. Relating performance of thin-film composite forward osmosis membranes to support layer formation and structure

    KAUST Repository

    Tiraferri, Alberto

    2011-02-01

    Osmotically driven membrane processes have the potential to treat impaired water sources, desalinate sea/brackish waters, and sustainably produce energy. The development of a membrane tailored for these processes is essential to advance the technology to the point that it is commercially viable. Here, a systematic investigation of the influence of thin-film composite membrane support layer structure on forward osmosis performance is conducted. The membranes consist of a selective polyamide active layer formed by interfacial polymerization on top of a polysulfone support layer fabricated by phase separation. By systematically varying the conditions used during the casting of the polysulfone layer, an array of support layers with differing structures was produced. The role that solvent quality, dope polymer concentration, fabric layer wetting, and casting blade gate height play in the support layer structure formation was investigated. Using a 1M NaCl draw solution and a deionized water feed, water fluxes ranging from 4 to 25Lm-2h-1 with consistently high salt rejection (>95.5%) were produced. The relationship between membrane structure and performance was analyzed. This study confirms the hypothesis that the optimal forward osmosis membrane consists of a mixed-structure support layer, where a thin sponge-like layer sits on top of highly porous macrovoids. Both the active layer transport properties and the support layer structural characteristics need to be optimized in order to fabricate a high performance forward osmosis membrane. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

  8. Organophosphorous pesticide exposure alters sperm chromatin structure in Mexican agricultural workers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Our objective was to evaluate alterations in sperm chromatin structure in men occupationally exposed to a mixture of organophosphorus pesticides (OP) because these alterations have been proposed to compromise male fertility and offspring development. Chromatin susceptibility to in situ acid-induced denaturation structure was assessed by the sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA). Urinary levels of alkylphosphates (DAP) were used to assess exposure. Diethylthiophosphate (DETP) was the most frequent OP metabolite found in urine samples indicating that compounds derived from thiophosphoric acid were mainly used. Chromatin structure was altered in most samples. About 75% of semen samples were classified as having poor fertility potential (>30% of Percentage of DNA Fragmentation Index [DFI%]), whereas individuals without OP occupational exposure showed average DFI% values of 9.9%. Most parameters of conventional semen analysis were within normality except for the presence of immature cells (IGC) in which 82% of the samples were above reference values. There were significant direct associations between urinary DETP concentrations and mean DFI and SD-DFI but marginally (P = 0.079) with DFI%, after adjustment for potential confounders, including IGC. This suggests that OP exposure alters sperm chromatin condensation, which could be reflected in an increased number of cells with greater susceptibility to DNA denaturation. This study showed that human sperm chromatin is a sensitive target to OP exposure and may contribute to adverse reproductive outcomes. Further studies on the relevance of protein phosphorylation as a possible mechanism by which OP alter sperm chromatin are required

  9. Opioid-receptor (OR) signaling cascades in rat cerebral cortex and model cell lines: the role of plasma membrane structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ujčíková, H; Brejchová, J; Vošahlíková, M; Kagan, D; Dlouhá, K; Sýkora, J; Merta, L; Drastichová, Z; Novotný, J; Ostašov, P; Roubalová, L; Parenti, M; Hof, M; Svoboda, P

    2014-01-01

    Large number of extracellular signals is received by plasma membrane receptors which, upon activation, transduce information into the target cell interior via trimeric G-proteins (GPCRs) and induce activation or inhibition of adenylyl cyclase enzyme activity (AC). Receptors for opioid drugs such as morphine (micro-OR, delta-OR and kappa-OR) belong to rhodopsin family of GPCRs. Our recent results indicated a specific up-regulation of AC I (8-fold) and AC II (2.5-fold) in plasma membranes (PM) isolated from rat brain cortex exposed to increasing doses of morphine (10-50 mg/kg) for 10 days. Increase of ACI and ACII represented the specific effect as the amount of ACIII-ACIX, prototypical PM marker Na, K-ATPase and trimeric G-protein alpha and beta subunits was unchanged. The up-regulation of ACI and ACII faded away after 20 days since the last dose of morphine. Proteomic analysis of these PM indicated that the brain cortex of morphine-treated animals cannot be regarded as being adapted to this drug because significant up-regulation of proteins functionally related to oxidative stress and alteration of brain energy metabolism occurred. The number of delta-OR was increased 2-fold and their sensitivity to monovalent cations was altered. Characterization of delta-OR-G-protein coupling in model HEK293 cell line indicated high ability of lithium to support affinity of delta-OR response to agonist stimulation. Our studies of PM structure and function in context with desensitization of GPCRs action were extended by data indicating participation of cholesterol-enriched membrane domains in agonist-specific internalization of delta-OR. In HEK293 cells stably expressing delta-OR-G(i)1alpha fusion protein, depletion of PM cholesterol was associated with the decrease in affinity of G-protein response to agonist stimulation, whereas maximum response was unchanged. Hydrophobic interior of isolated PM became more "fluid", chaotically organized and accessible to water molecules

  10. Multi-objective optimization of membrane structures based on Pareto Genetic Algorithm

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    SAN Bing-bing; SUN Xiao-ying; WU Yue

    2010-01-01

    A multi-objective optimization method based on Pareto Genetic Algorithm is presented for shape design of membrane structures from a structural view point.Several non-dimensional variables are defined as optimization variables,which are decision factors of shapes of membrane structures.Three objectives are proposed including maximization of stiffness,maximum uniformity of stress and minimum reaction under external loads.Pareto Muhi-objective Genetic Algorithm is introduced to solve the Pareto solutions.Consequently,the dependence of the optimality upon the optimization variables is derived to provide guidelines on how to determine design parameters.Moreover,several examples illustrate the proposed methods and applications.The study shows that the multi-objective optimization method in this paper is feasible and efficient for membrane structures; the research on Pareto solutions can provide explicit and useful guidelines for shape design of membrane structures.

  11. A REVIEW OF THE STRUCTURAL ALTERATIONS IN THE CEREBRAL HEMISPHERES OF THE AGING RHESUS MONKEY

    OpenAIRE

    Peters, Alan; Kemper, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Like humans, rhesus monkeys show cognitive decline and this review considers what structural age-related changes underlie this decline. Some structural measures do not alter significantly with age. These include brain weight, overall cortical thickness; numbers of cortical neurons; and numbers of astrocytes and microglial cells. Other structural measures change with age, but the change does not correlate with cognitive decline. These changes include nerve fiber loss from some fiber tracts, de...

  12. Membrane dish analysis: A summary of structural and optical analysis capabilities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steele, C.R.; Balch, C.D.; Jorgensen, G.J.; Wendelin, T.; Lewandowski, A.

    1991-11-01

    Research at SERI within the Department of Energy's Solar Thermal Technology Program has focused on the development of membrane dish concentrators for space and terrestrial power applications. As potentially lightweight, inexpensive, high-performance structures, they are excellent candidates for space-deployable energy sources as well as cost-effective terrestrial energy concepts. A thorough engineering research treatment of these types of structures consists primarily of two parts: (1) structural mechanics of the membrane and ring support and (2) analysis and characterization of the concentrator optical performance. It is important to understand the effects of the membrane's structure and support system on the optical performance of the concentrator. This requires an interface between appropriate structural and optical models. Until recently, such models and the required interface have not existed. This report documents research that has been conducted at SERI in this area. It is a compilation of several papers describing structural models of membrane dish structures and optical models used to predict dish concentrator optical and thermal performance. The structural models were developed under SERI subcontract by Dr. Steele and Dr. Balch of Stanford University. The optical model was developed in-house by SERI staff. In addition, the interface between the models is described. It allows easy and thorough characterization of membrane dish systems from the mechanics to the resulting optical performance. The models described herein have been and continue to be extremely useful to SERI, industry, and universities involved with the modeling and analysis of lightweight membrane concentrators for solar thermal applications.

  13. Pinkbar is an epithelial-specific BAR domain protein that generates planar membrane structures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pykäläinen, Anette; Boczkowska, Malgorzata; Zhao, Hongxia; Saarikangas, Juha; Rebowski, Grzegorz; Jansen, Maurice; Hakanen, Janne; Koskela, Essi V.; Peränen, Johan; Vihinen, Helena; Jokitalo, Eija; Salminen, Marjo; Ikonen, Elina; Dominguez, Roberto; Lappalainen, Pekka (Helsinki); (Penn)

    2013-05-29

    Bin/amphipysin/Rvs (BAR)-domain proteins sculpt cellular membranes and have key roles in processes such as endocytosis, cell motility and morphogenesis. BAR domains are divided into three subfamilies: BAR- and F-BAR-domain proteins generate positive membrane curvature and stabilize cellular invaginations, whereas I-BAR-domain proteins induce negative curvature and stabilize protrusions. We show that a previously uncharacterized member of the I-BAR subfamily, Pinkbar, is specifically expressed in intestinal epithelial cells, where it localizes to Rab13-positive vesicles and to the plasma membrane at intercellular junctions. Notably, the BAR domain of Pinkbar does not induce membrane tubulation but promotes the formation of planar membrane sheets. Structural and mutagenesis analyses reveal that the BAR domain of Pinkbar has a relatively flat lipid-binding interface and that it assembles into sheet-like oligomers in crystals and in solution, which may explain its unique membrane-deforming activity.

  14. Alterations in the activity and structure of pectin methylesterase treated by high pressure carbon dioxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Linyan; Wu, Jihong; Hu, Xiaosong; Zhi, Xian; Liao, Xiaojun

    2009-03-11

    The influence of high pressure carbon dioxide (HPCD) on the activity and structure of pectin methylesterase (PME) from orange was investigated. The pressures were 8-30 MPa, temperature 55 degrees C and time 10 min. HPCD caused significant inactivation on PME, the lowest residual activity was about 9.3% at 30 MPa. The SDS-PAGE electrophoretic behavior of HPCD-treated PME was not altered, while changes in the secondary and tertiary structures were found. The beta-structure fraction in the secondary structure decreased and the fluorescence intensity increased as HPCD pressures were elevated. After 7-day storage at 4 degrees C, no alteration of its activity and no reversion of its beta-structure fraction were observed, while its fluorescence intensity further decreased. PMID:19256556

  15. Structural basis for the membrane association of ankyrinG via palmitoylation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujiwara, Yuichiro; Kondo, Hiroko X.; Shirota, Matsuyuki; Kobayashi, Megumi; Takeshita, Kohei; Nakagawa, Atsushi; Okamura, Yasushi; Kinoshita, Kengo

    2016-04-01

    By clustering various ion channels and transporters, ankyrin-G (AnkG) configures the membrane-excitation platforms in neurons and cardiomyocytes. AnkG itself localizes to specific areas on the plasma membrane via s-palmitoylation of Cys. However, the structural mechanism by which AnkG anchors to the membrane is not understood. In this study, we solved the crystal structures of the reduced and oxidized forms of the AnkG s-palmitoylation domain and used multiple long-term coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations to analyze their membrane association. Here we report that the membrane anchoring of AnkG was facilitated by s-palmitoylation, defining a stable binding interface on the lipid membrane, and that AnkG without s-palmitoylation also preferred to stay near the membrane but did not have a unique binding interface. This suggests that AnkG in the juxtamembrane region is primed to accept lipid modification at Cys, and once that happens AnkG constitutes a rigid structural base upon which a membrane-excitation platform can be assembled.

  16. Ultra-structural hair alterations of drug abusers: a scanning electron microscopic investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkmenoglu, Fatma Pinar; Kasirga, Ugur Baran; Celik, Hakan Hamdi

    2015-01-01

    As drug abuse carries a societal stigma, patients do not often report their history of drug abuse to the healthcare providers. However, drug abuse is highly co-morbid with a host of other health problems such as psychiatric disorders and skin diseases, and majority of individuals with drug use disorders seek treatment in the first place for other problems. Therefore, it is very important for physicians to be aware of clinical signs and symptoms of drug use. Recently diagnostic value of dermatologic tissue alterations associated with drug abuse has become a very particular interest because skin changes were reported to be the earliest noticeable consequence of drug abuse prompting earlier intervention and treatment. Although hair is an annex of skin, alterations on hair structure due to drug use have not been demonstrated. This study represents the first report on ultra-structural hair alterations of drug abusers. We have investigated ultra-structure of the hair samples obtained from 6 cocaine, 6 heroin, 7 cannabis and 4 lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) abusers by scanning electron microscope (SEM). SEM analysis of hair samples gave us drug-specific discriminating alterations. We suggest that results of this study will make a noteworthy contribution to cutaneous alterations associated with drug abuse which are regarded as the earliest clinical manifestations, and this SEM approach is a very specific and effective tool in the detection of abuse of respective drugs, leading early treatment. PMID:26309532

  17. Magnetic resonance imaging structural alterations in brain of alcohol abusers and its association with impulsivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asensio, Samuel; Morales, Julia L; Senabre, Isabel; Romero, Maria J; Beltran, Miguel A; Flores-Bellver, Miguel; Barcia, Jorge M; Romero, Francisco J

    2016-07-01

    Despite the suggestion that impulsivity plays a central role in the transfer from a recreational drug use to a substance use disorder, very few studies focused on neurobiological markers for addiction. This study aimed to identify volumetric alterations in a sample of patients with mild alcohol use disorder with a short history of alcohol use, compared with a control group, and also focused on its association with impulsivity levels. Most magnetic resonance imaging studies have focused on severe alcohol use disorder, formerly called alcohol-dependent patients, showing alcohol-related structural alterations and their association with alcohol use history variables but not with personality parameters like impulsivity. Our hypothesis is that our group of alcohol users may already display structural alterations especially in brain regions related to inhibitory control like medial-prefrontal regions, and that those structural alterations could be more associated to personality traits like impulsivity than to drug use variables. Our results clearly demonstrate that our population showed lower regional grey and white matter volumes in the medial-prefrontal and orbitofrontal cortices, as well as higher regional white matter volume in the ventral striatum and the internal capsule. Volumetric alterations were associated to the Barratt's impulsivity score: the more impulsive the subjects, the lower the medial-prefrontal cortex grey matter volume. PMID:25988724

  18. Effect of Heat Treatment on Structures and Properties of Polyurethane Blend Ultrafiltration Membranes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    封严; 肖长发

    2004-01-01

    The polyurethane/polyacrylonitrile ( PU/PAN ) and polyurethane/cellulose acetate (PU/CA) blend ultra filtration membranes were prepared based on LoebSourirajan phase transition method. The change of the structures and properties of the PU/PAN and PU/CA membranes with the heat treatment process was studied.The results showed: the water flux decreased and retention increased with the increase of heat treatment temperature of PU/PAN blend membrane, but the water flux of PU/CA blend membrane got the maximum with heat treatment temperature of 60℃ and decreased rapidly with the heat treatment temperature of 100 ℃. The interfacial microvoid structure and its influence on the properties of PU/PAN and PU/CA blend membranes were studied.

  19. A new look at lipid-membrane structure in relation to drug research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mouritsen, Ole G.; Jørgensen, Kent

    1998-01-01

    Lipid-bilayer membranes are key objects in drug research in relation to (i) interaction of drugs with membrane-bound receptors, (ii) drug targeting, penetration, and permeation of cell membranes, and (iii) use of liposomes in micro-encapsulation technologies for drug delivery. Rational design of...... new drugs and drug-delivery systems therefore requries insight into the physical properties of lipid-bilayer membranes. This mini-review provides a perspective on the current view of lipid-bilayer structure and dynamics based on information obtained from a variety of recent experimental and...... theoretical studies. Special attention is paid to trans-bilayer structure, lateral molecular organization of the lipid bilayer, lipid-mediated protein assembly, and lipid-bilayer permeability. It is argued that lipids play a major role in lipid membrane-organization and functionality....

  20. Structure of highly rigid ionic polymers from single molecules to membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Lilin; Cornelius, Christopher J.

    2005-03-01

    The structure of ionic polymers in solutions and in their solid state is governed by the segregation to hydrophilic and hydrophobic regions. Very rigid backbones with persistence lengths much larger than the size of the monomer limit the segregation affecting the resulting structure and dynamics of the polymers. Using a newly synthesized para phenylene based sulfonated polymer with a potential to serve as a polymeric electrolytic membrane for fuel cell applications, we followed the structure of highly rigid ionic polymers from a single molecule to a water swollen membranes using small angle neutron scattering and AFM/TEM techniques. AFM and TEM images show that the dry membranes have domains with a diameter from 30 nm to 70nm. Small angle neutron scattering probes the smaller structure in the membranes from dry to swollen states. Fitting to Teubner-Strey model of SANS data indicates the bi-continuous phases were formed with water and ethanol despite the rigidity of the backbone.

  1. Uniform Structure of Eukaryotic Plasma Membrane: Lateral Domains in Plants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Malínská, Kateřina; Zažímalová, Eva

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 12, č. 2 (2011), s. 148-155. ISSN 1389-2037 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LC06034 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50380511 Keywords : Plasma membrane * microdomains * lateral segregation Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 2.886, year: 2011

  2. Molecular Structure, Function, and Dynamics of Clathrin-Mediated Membrane Traffic

    OpenAIRE

    Kirchhausen, Tom; Owen, David; Harrison, Stephen C.

    2014-01-01

    Clathrin is a molecular scaffold for vesicular uptake of cargo at the plasma membrane, where its assembly into cage-like lattices underlies the clathrin-coated pits of classical endocytosis. This review describes the structures of clathrin, major cargo adaptors, and other proteins that participate in forming a clathrin-coated pit, loading its contents, pinching off the membrane as a lattice-enclosed vesicle, and recycling the components. It integrates as much of the structural information as ...

  3. COUPLING COMPUTATION OF THE FLOW FIELD AND THE LARGE DEFORMATION OF MEMBRANE STRUCTURE OF STRATOSPHERE AIRSHIPS

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIU Jian-min

    2008-01-01

    In this article, the mathematical model of the coupling of the three-dimensional fluid flow and the large deformation of membrane structure is established. The fluid-structure coupling interaction is simulated using the computational codes developed by the authors. By analyzing the interactions of membrane and flow field, the aeroelasticity of the airship is detailed. All the results are adopted in the focused study of the stratosphere airship in trimmed state.

  4. Comparative analysis and “expression space” coverage of the production of prokaryotic membrane proteins for structural genomics

    OpenAIRE

    Surade, Sachin; Klein, Markus; Stolt-Bergner, Peggy C.; Muenke, Cornelia; Roy, Ankita; Michel, Hartmut

    2006-01-01

    Membrane proteins comprise up to one-third of prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes, but only a very small number of membrane protein structures are known. Membrane proteins are challenging targets for structural biology, primarily due to the difficulty in producing and purifying milligram quantities of these proteins. We are evaluating different methods to produce and purify large numbers of prokaryotic membrane proteins for subsequent structural and functional analysis. Here, we present the co...

  5. Stealth carriers for low-resolution structure determination of membrane proteins in solution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maric, Selma; Skar-Gislinge, Nicholas; Midtgaard, Søren;

    2014-01-01

    O at the length scales relevant to SANS. These 'stealth' carrier discs may be used as a general platform for low-resolution structural studies of membrane proteins using well established data-analysis tools originally developed for soluble proteins. © 2014 International Union of Crystallography.......Structural studies of membrane proteins remain a great experimental challenge. Functional reconstitution into artificial nanoscale bilayer disc carriers that mimic the native bilayer environment allows the handling of membrane proteins in solution. This enables the use of small-angle scattering...

  6. Nuclear magnetic resonance structural studies of membrane proteins in micelles and bilayers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Xiao-Min; Franzin, Carla M; Thai, Khang; Yu, Jinghua; Marassi, Francesca M

    2007-01-01

    Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy enables determination of membrane protein structures in lipid environments, such as micelles and bilayers. This chapter outlines the steps for membrane-protein structure determination using solution NMR with micelle samples, and solid-state NMR with oriented lipid-bilayer samples. The methods for protein expression and purification, sample preparation, and NMR experiments are described and illustrated with examples from gamma and CHIF, two membrane proteins that function as regulatory subunits of the Na+- and K+-ATPase. PMID:17951757

  7. METAL-INDUCED ALTERATION OF THE CELL MEMBRANE/CYTOPLASM COMPLEX STUDIED BY FLOW CYTOMETRY AND DETERGENT LYSIS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flow cytometric analysis of the cell cycle is most effectively accomplished with membrane-/cytoplasm-free ("clean") nuclei. Non-ionic detergents (e.g. NP40 or Triton X-100) commonly are employed to solubilize cells membranes/cytoplasm to produce "clean" nuclei. reatment of murine...

  8. Label-free optical quantification of structural alterations in Alzheimer's disease

    CERN Document Server

    Lee, Moosung; Jung, JaeHwang; Yu, Hyeonseung; Kim, Kyoohyun; Lee, Shinhwa; Jeong, Yong; Park, YongKeun

    2016-01-01

    We present a quantitative label-free imaging of mouse whole brain tissue slices with sub-micrometre resolution, employing holographic microscopy and an automated scanning platform. From the measured light field images, scattering coefficients and anisotropies are quantitatively retrieved, which enables access to structural information about brain tissues. As a proof of principle, we demonstrate that these scattering parameters enable us to quantitatively address structural alteration in the brain tissues of mice with Alzheimer's disease.

  9. Altered starch structure is associated with endosperm modification in Quality Protein Maize

    OpenAIRE

    Gibbon, Bryan C.; Wang, Xuelu; Larkins, Brian A

    2003-01-01

    The biochemical basis of modified kernel texture in Quality Protein Maize (QPM) is poorly understood. Proteomic analysis of several QPM lines indicated increased levels of granule-bound starch synthase I in the soluble nonzein protein fraction of these genotypes. Increased extraction of this enzyme reflected a change in starch structure, which was manifested as shorter amylopectin branches and increased starch-granule swelling. In mature kernels, these alterations in starch structure were ass...

  10. Biological Membrane Ion Channels Dynamics, Structure, and Applications

    CERN Document Server

    Chung, Shin-Ho; Krishnamurthy, Vikram

    2007-01-01

    Ion channels are biological nanotubes that are formed by membrane proteins. Because ion channels regulate all electrical activities in living cells, understanding their mechanisms at a molecular level is a fundamental problem in biology. This book deals with recent breakthroughs in ion-channel research that have been brought about by the combined effort of experimental biophysicists and computational physicists, who together are beginning to unravel the story of these exquisitely designed biomolecules. With chapters by leading experts, the book is aimed at researchers in nanodevices and biosensors, as well as advanced undergraduate and graduate students in biology and the physical sciences. Key Features Presents the latest information on the molecular mechanisms of ion permeation through membrane ion channels Uses schematic diagrams to illustrate important concepts in biophysics Written by leading researchers in the area of ion channel investigations

  11. Structural basis of contraction in vitreal fibrous membranes.

    OpenAIRE

    Grierson, I; Rahi, A H

    1981-01-01

    A combined ultrastructural and immunofluorescent study was conducted on experimentally induced fibrous membranes in the vitreous of adult rabbits. Autochthonous tissue cultured fibroblasts were injected into the mid-vitreous of one eye of each of 25 rabbits. The animals were monitored routinely with an ophthalmoscope and slit-lamp and were killed at various time periods between 5 minutes and 6 months. Appropriate tissue was taken for light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, scannin...

  12. Structural Analysis of the Angiogenesis in the Chicken Chorioallantoic Membrane

    OpenAIRE

    Verhoelst, Eva

    2011-01-01

    During the last decades, the poultry sector is in search of ways to monitor chicken embryonic growth, health and quality, as to control and optimize the incubation conditions, especially the gas concentrations. One of the parameters of chicken development which may change under different gas concentrations is the angiogenesis in the chorioallantoic membrane (CAM), the organ for gas exchange of the chicken embryo. To be able to perform large incubation experiments under different gaseous condi...

  13. Development of a stealth carrier system for structural studies of membrane proteins in solution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maric, Selma

    Structural studies of membrane proteins remain a great experimental challenge. Functional reconstitution into artificial carriers that mimic the native bilayer environment allows for the handling of membrane proteins in solution and enables the use of small-angle scattering techniques for fast and...... which can be used for SANS structural analysis of membrane proteins in solution. In combination with the D2O/H2O-based contrast variation method it is demonstrated that it is possible to prepare specifically deuterated analogues of the nanodisc, which give minimal contribution to the neutron scattering......-resolution structural studes of many membrane proteins and their complexes in solution as the analysis of SANS data for this platform is greatly simplified and allows for the application of existing data analysis tools already available for soluble proteins...

  14. NOVEL NANOCOMPOSITE MEMBRANE STRUCTURES FOR H2 SEPARATIONS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Benny D. Freeman

    2005-03-31

    This report explores possible methods of improving CO{sub 2} selectivity in polymer based membranes. The first method investigated using basic nanoparticles to enhance the solubility of acid gases in nanocomposite membranes, thus enhancing the overall acid gas/light gas selectivity (e.g., CO{sub 2}/H{sub 2}, CO{sub 2}/CH{sub 4}, etc.). The influence of nanoparticle surface chemistry on nanocomposite morphology and transport properties will be determined experimentally in a series of poly(1-trimethylsilyl-1-propyne). Additional factors (e.g., chemical reaction of the particles with the polymers) have been considered, as necessary, during the course of the investigation. The second method investigated using polar polymers such as crosslinked poly(ethylene oxide) and poly(ether-b-amide) to improve CO{sub 2} sorption and thereby increase CO{sub 2} permeability and CO{sub 2}/light gas selectivity. For both types of materials, CO{sub 2} and light gas permeabilities have been characterized. The overall objective was to improve the understanding of materials design strategies to improve acid gas transport properties of membranes.

  15. Membrane proteins: functional and structural studies using reconstituted proteoliposomes and 2-D crystals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rigaud J.-L.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Reconstitution of membrane proteins into lipid bilayers is a powerful tool to analyze functional as well as structural areas of membrane protein research. First, the proper incorporation of a purified membrane protein into closed lipid vesicles, to produce proteoliposomes, allows the investigation of transport and/or catalytic properties of any membrane protein without interference by other membrane components. Second, the incorporation of a large amount of membrane proteins into lipid bilayers to grow crystals confined to two dimensions has recently opened a new way to solve their structure at high resolution using electron crystallography. However, reconstitution of membrane proteins into functional proteoliposomes or 2-D crystallization has been an empirical domain, which has been viewed for a long time more like "black magic" than science. Nevertheless, in the last ten years, important progress has been made in acquiring knowledge of lipid-protein-detergent interactions and has permitted to build upon a set of basic principles that has limited the empirical approach of reconstitution experiments. Reconstitution strategies have been improved and new strategies have been developed, facilitating the success rate of proteoliposome formation and 2-D crystallization. This review deals with the various strategies available to obtain proteoliposomes and 2-D crystals from detergent-solubilized proteins. It gives an overview of the methods that have been applied, which may be of help for reconstituting more proteins into lipid bilayers in a form suitable for functional studies at the molecular level and for high-resolution structural analysis.

  16. High-resolution Structures of Protein-Membrane Complexes by Neutron Reflection and MD Simulation: Membrane Association of the PTEN Tumor Suppressor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lösche, Matthias

    2012-02-01

    The lipid matrix of biomembranes is an in-plane fluid, thermally and compositionally disordered leaflet of 5 nm thickness and notoriously difficult to characterize in structural terms. Yet, biomembranes are ubiquitous in the cell, and membrane-bound proteins are implicated in a variety of signaling pathways and intra-cellular transport. We developed methodology to study proteins associated with model membranes using neutron reflection measurements and showed recently that this approach can resolve the penetration depth and orientation of membrane proteins with ångstrom resolution if their crystal or NMR structure is known. Here we apply this technology to determine the membrane bindung and unravel functional details of the PTEN phosphatase, a key player in the PI3K apoptosis pathway. PTEN is an important regulatory protein and tumor suppressor that performs its phosphatase activity as an interfacial enzyme at the plasma membrane-cytoplasm boundary. Acting as an antagonist to phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K) in cell signaling, it is deleted in many human cancers. Despite its importance in regulating the levels of the phosphoinositoltriphosphate PI(3,4,5)P3, there is little understanding of how PTEN binds to membranes, is activated and then acts as a phosphatase. We investigated the structure and function of PTEN by studying its membrane affinity and localization on in-plane fluid, thermally disordered synthetic membrane models. The membrane association of the protein depends strongly on membrane composition, where phosphatidylserine (PS) and phosphatidylinositol diphosphate (PI(4,5)P2) act synergetically in attracting the enzyme to the membrane surface. Membrane affinities depend strongly on membrane fluidity, which suggests multiple binding sites on the protein for PI(4,5)P2. Neutron reflection measurements show that the PTEN phosphatase ``scoots'' along the membrane surface (penetration membrane tightly with its two major domains, the C2 and phosphatase domains

  17. Structural and Spectroscopic Characterization of A Nanosized Sulfated TiO2 Filler and of Nanocomposite Nafion Membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Valentina Allodi; Sergio Brutti; Marco Giarola; Mirko Sgambetterra; Maria Assunta Navarra; Stefania Panero; Gino Mariotto

    2016-01-01

    A large number of nano-sized oxides have been studied in the literature as fillers for polymeric membranes, such as Nafion®. Superacidic sulfated oxides have been proposed and characterized. Once incorporated into polymer matrices, their beneficial effect on peculiar membrane properties has been demonstrated. The alteration of physical-chemical properties of composite membranes has roots in the intermolecular interaction between the inorganic filler surface groups and the polymer chains. In t...

  18. Structure refinement and membrane positioning of selectively labeled OmpX in phospholipid nanodiscs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hagn, Franz, E-mail: franz.hagn@tum.de; Wagner, Gerhard, E-mail: gerhard-wagner@hms.harvard.edu [Harvard Medical School, Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology (United States)

    2015-04-15

    NMR structural studies on membrane proteins are often complicated by their large size, taking into account the contribution of the membrane mimetic. Therefore, classical resonance assignment approaches often fail. The large size of phospholipid nanodiscs, a detergent-free phospholipid bilayer mimetic, prevented their use in high-resolution solution-state NMR spectroscopy so far. We recently introduced smaller nanodiscs that are suitable for NMR structure determination. However, side-chain assignments of a membrane protein in nanodiscs still remain elusive. Here, we utilized a NOE-based approach to assign (stereo-) specifically labeled Ile, Leu, Val and Ala methyl labeled and uniformly {sup 15}N-Phe and {sup 15}N-Tyr labeled OmpX and calculated a refined high-resolution structure. In addition, we were able to obtain residual dipolar couplings (RDCs) of OmpX in nanodiscs using Pf1 phage medium for the induction of weak alignment. Back-calculated NOESY spectra of the obtained NMR structures were compared to experimental NOESYs in order to validate the quality of these structures. We further used NOE information between protonated lipid head groups and side-chain methyls to determine the position of OmpX in the phospholipid bilayer. These data were verified by paramagnetic relaxation enhancement (PRE) experiments obtained with Gd{sup 3+}-modified lipids. Taken together, this study emphasizes the need for the (stereo-) specific labeling of membrane proteins in a highly deuterated background for high-resolution structure determination, particularly in large membrane mimicking systems like phospholipid nanodiscs. Structure validation by NOESY back-calculation will be helpful for the structure determination and validation of membrane proteins where NOE assignment is often difficult. The use of protein to lipid NOEs will be beneficial for the positioning of a membrane protein in the lipid bilayer without the need for preparing multiple protein samples.

  19. Membrane dish analysis: A summary of structural and optical analysis capabilities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steele, C.R.; Balch, C.D.; Jorgensen, G.J.; Wendelin, T.; Lewandowski, A.

    1991-11-01

    Research at SERI within the Department of Energy`s Solar Thermal Technology Program has focused on the development of membrane dish concentrators for space and terrestrial power applications. As potentially lightweight, inexpensive, high-performance structures, they are excellent candidates for space-deployable energy sources as well as cost-effective terrestrial energy concepts. A thorough engineering research treatment of these types of structures consists primarily of two parts: (1) structural mechanics of the membrane and ring support and (2) analysis and characterization of the concentrator optical performance. It is important to understand the effects of the membrane`s structure and support system on the optical performance of the concentrator. This requires an interface between appropriate structural and optical models. Until recently, such models and the required interface have not existed. This report documents research that has been conducted at SERI in this area. It is a compilation of several papers describing structural models of membrane dish structures and optical models used to predict dish concentrator optical and thermal performance. The structural models were developed under SERI subcontract by Dr. Steele and Dr. Balch of Stanford University. The optical model was developed in-house by SERI staff. In addition, the interface between the models is described. It allows easy and thorough characterization of membrane dish systems from the mechanics to the resulting optical performance. The models described herein have been and continue to be extremely useful to SERI, industry, and universities involved with the modeling and analysis of lightweight membrane concentrators for solar thermal applications.

  20. Structure refinement and membrane positioning of selectively labeled OmpX in phospholipid nanodiscs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    NMR structural studies on membrane proteins are often complicated by their large size, taking into account the contribution of the membrane mimetic. Therefore, classical resonance assignment approaches often fail. The large size of phospholipid nanodiscs, a detergent-free phospholipid bilayer mimetic, prevented their use in high-resolution solution-state NMR spectroscopy so far. We recently introduced smaller nanodiscs that are suitable for NMR structure determination. However, side-chain assignments of a membrane protein in nanodiscs still remain elusive. Here, we utilized a NOE-based approach to assign (stereo-) specifically labeled Ile, Leu, Val and Ala methyl labeled and uniformly 15N-Phe and 15N-Tyr labeled OmpX and calculated a refined high-resolution structure. In addition, we were able to obtain residual dipolar couplings (RDCs) of OmpX in nanodiscs using Pf1 phage medium for the induction of weak alignment. Back-calculated NOESY spectra of the obtained NMR structures were compared to experimental NOESYs in order to validate the quality of these structures. We further used NOE information between protonated lipid head groups and side-chain methyls to determine the position of OmpX in the phospholipid bilayer. These data were verified by paramagnetic relaxation enhancement (PRE) experiments obtained with Gd3+-modified lipids. Taken together, this study emphasizes the need for the (stereo-) specific labeling of membrane proteins in a highly deuterated background for high-resolution structure determination, particularly in large membrane mimicking systems like phospholipid nanodiscs. Structure validation by NOESY back-calculation will be helpful for the structure determination and validation of membrane proteins where NOE assignment is often difficult. The use of protein to lipid NOEs will be beneficial for the positioning of a membrane protein in the lipid bilayer without the need for preparing multiple protein samples

  1. Structural Studies on Membrane Proteins and Biological Macromolecular Assemblies in Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsukihara, Tomitake

    Structural studies on membrane proteins have been performed at atomic level by both three-dimensional X-ray crystallography and two-dimensional electron crystallography in Japan as in Europe and Unites States. More than 13 membrane protein structures were elucidate by X-ray method in our country, and seven membrane protein structures were determined by cryo-electron microscopic method developed by Fujiyoshi of Kyoto University. Extensive crystallographic studies on calcium pump and cytochrome c oxidase elucidated their functional mechanisms at atomic level. Structure and switching mechanism of a flagellum were studied by X-ray and electron microscopic methods. Vault structure exhibiting D39 symmetry was determined by X-ray method.

  2. The adaptation of mussels Crenomytilus grayanus to cadmium accumulation result in alterations in organization of microsomal enzyme-membrane complex (non-specific phosphatase).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zakhartsev; Chelomin; Belcheva

    2000-08-01

    The kinetic parameters (V(m), K(m) and slope) of membrane-bound microsomal non-specific phosphatase (NPase, with G6P as the substrate) from the digestive gland of unexposed and cadmium adapted (45 days for 100 µg Cd(2+)/l) mussels were investigated. In vivo and in vitro approaches were used. Adaptation of mussels (Crenomytilus grayanus) to cadmium resulted in a 1.6-fold increase in NPase activity. V(m) was increased by 1.6-fold, but K(m) was the same in terms of enzyme kinetics. This indicates that the total concentration of the enzymes in the digestive gland increased. Cd(2+) (1 mM) did not significantly alter the activity of the membrane-bound enzyme in vitro both for unexposed and for cadmium adapted mussels, meaning that cadmium ions are not a direct inhibitor of the membrane-bound enzyme in this concentration. The microsomal NPase activity in both unexposed and cadmium adapted mussels was inhibited by in vitro solubilization of microsomes with non-ionic detergent (Triton X100, 0.01%). This inhibition was uncompetitive for microsomes of unexposed mussels (K(m) decreased 3.1-fold). The most drastic events were observed in cadmium adapted mussels, where inhibition was mixed (K(m) decreased 7.2-fold). The simultaneous actions of detergent and cadmium ions did not alter NPase activity significantly in comparison with action of the detergent alone. The differences in the types and the extents of inhibition of the enzymes activity by membrane disordering agent (Triton X100) indicated that the enzyme-membrane complex (NPase) has been altered as a result of adaptation of mussels to cadmium accumulation. We conclude that the mussels produced a new enzyme-membrane complex, with the same K(m) as the previous complex, but with other detergent sensitivity and greater amounts. Thus, the adaptation capacity of this enzyme is reduced as result of adaptation of mussels to cadmium accumulation. PMID:10930649

  3. Static and Dynamic Analyses of Long-Span Spatial Steel-Cable-Membrane Hybrid Structures

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    丁阳; 彭翼; 李忠献

    2003-01-01

    With the increment of the complexity of structural systems and the span of spatial structures, the interactions between parts of the structures, especially between some flexible substructures, become too complex to be analyzed clearly. In this paper, taking an actual gymnasium of a long-span spatial steel-cable-membrane hybrid structure as the calculation model, the static and dynamic analyses of the hybrid structures are performed by employing the global analysis of the whole hybrid structure and the substructural analysis of the truss arch substructure, the cable-membrane substructure, etc. In addition, the comparison of stresses and displacements of structural members in the global and substructural analyses is made. The numerical results show that serious errors exist in the substructural analysis of the hybrid structure, and the global analysis is necessary for the hybrid structure under the excitation of static loads and seismic loads.

  4. Compared study of the local structure of alteration products of SON 68 glass and natural gels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This study is a contribution in the understanding of the long time behavior of alteration products of the glass SON 68, used to simulate the nuclear glass R7T7. The local structure around Zirconium and iron has been probed using X-ray absorption spectroscopy in altered surface layer of glass SON 68. Alteration products of this glass have been prepared for short (3 hours to 7 days) and long (17 months) time, using various indexes of saturation for the leaching solution with respect to the Si content of the glass (from 0 to 90 %). The evolution of the local structure around Fe has also been studied in recent and old natural ferric gels. Zr, Fe- L2,3 XANES and Zr, Fe-K EXAFS spectroscopies have shown that, in the pristine glass, these elements are connected to the polymeric network. Zr is found in an environment close to that of a zircon-silicate containing Na and Ca. Trivalent Fe is a network former. The leached layer of glass SON 68 is constituted of poorly ordered Zr-and Fe-(oxi-hydr)oxides that may have been formed by a mechanism of dissolution/precipitation; a relict phase with the same Zr local structure as that observed in the pristine glass, probably obtained thanks to in-situ solid condensation. The structural characteristics of the leached layer are observed from the first steps of alteration for Zr and Fe. Conversely to Fe, the structural status of Zr depends on the leaching kinetic as well as the contents of Ca and Si in the solid. Fe-K EXAFS results in recent natural ferri-hydrides present a clear structural similarity with that determined in glass SON 68 leached products. The study of old paleosols (between 1,800 and 200,000 years) has demonstrated the long time stability of ferric gels, although an increase of medium range order around Fe is seen. (author)

  5. Structure and transport properties of ethylcellulose membranes with different types and granulation of magnetic powder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krasowska, Monika; Strzelewicz, Anna; Rybak, Aleksandra; Dudek, Gabriela; Cieśla, Michał

    2016-06-01

    Structure and transport properties of ethylcellulose membranes with dispersed magnetic powder were investigated. The study mainly focused on diffusion, which is one of the transport mechanisms. The transport properties depend on many parameters like: polymeric matrix used, type of powder, its amount and granulation. The structure of the pattern formed by magnetic particles in the membrane matrix was studied. Description of the system was based on the phenomenological and molecular (random walk on a fractal lattice) approaches. Two parameters were calculated: the fractal dimension of random walk dw, and the fractal dimension of membrane structure df. The knowledge of both parameters made it possible to use the generalized equation of diffusion on the fractal structure obtained by Metzler et al. The research was carried out to determine the influence of magnetic powder granulation on the transport properties. The results showed that the random walk within the membranes of the smallest magnetic powder granulation was of the most subdiffusive character. Detailed investigation and quantitative description of gas transport through the membranes enables designing the membranes to be used in air oxygen enrichment.

  6. Thinking in Terms of Structure-Activity-Relationships (T-SAR): A Tool to Better Understand Nanofiltration Membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Stefan Stolte; Jorg Thöming; Fernández, José F.; Bernd Jastorff; Reinhold Störmann

    2011-01-01

    A frontier to be conquered in the field of membrane technology is related to the very limited scientific base for the rational and task-specific design of membranes. This is especially true for nanofiltration membranes with properties that are based on several solute-membrane interaction mechanisms. “Thinking in terms of Structure-Activity-Relationships” (T-SAR) is a methodology which applies a systematic analysis of a chemical entity based on its structural formula. However, the analysis bec...

  7. Structural Transition of Actin Filament in a Cell-Sized Water Droplet with a Phospholipid Membrane

    CERN Document Server

    Hase, M

    2005-01-01

    Actin filament, F-actin, is a semiflexible polymer with a negative charge, and is one of the main constituents on cell membranes. To clarify the effect of cross-talk between a phospholipid membrane and actin filaments in cells, we conducted microscopic observations on the structural changes in actin filaments in a cell-sized (several tens of micrometers in diameter) water droplet coated with a phospholipid membrane such as phosphatidylserine (PS; negatively-charged head group) or phosphatidylethanolamine (PE; neutral head group) as a simple model of a living cell membrane. With PS, actin filaments are distributed uniformly in the water phase without adsorption onto the membrane surface between 2 and 6 mM Mg2+, while between 6 and 12 mM Mg2+, actin filaments are adsorbed onto the inner membrane surface. With PE, actin filaments are uniformly adsorbed onto the inner membrane surface between 2 and 12 mM Mg2+. With both PS and PE membranes, at Mg2+ concentrations higher than 12 mM, thick bundles are formed in the...

  8. An experimental study of perovskite-structured mixed ionic- electronic conducting oxides and membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Pingying

    In recent decades, ceramic membranes based on mixed ionic and electronic conducting (MIEC) perovskite-structured oxides have received many attentions for their applications for air separation, or as a membrane reactor for methane oxidation. While numerous perovskite oxide materials have been explored over the past two decades; there are hardly any materials with sufficient practical economic value and performance for large scale applications, which justifies continuing the search for new materials. The main purposes of this thesis study are: (1) develop several novel SrCoO3-delta based MIEC oxides, SrCoCo1-xMxO3-delta, based on which membranes exhibit excellent oxygen permeability; (2) investigate the significant effects of the species and concentration of the dopants M (metal ions with fixed valences) on the various properties of these membranes; (3) investigate the significant effects of sintering temperature on the microstructures and performance of oxygen permeation membranes; and (4) study the performance of oxygen permeation membranes as a membrane reactor for methane combustion. To stabilize the cubic phase structure of the SrCoO3-delta oxide, various amounts of scandium was doped into the B-site of SrCoO 3-delta to form a series of new perovskite oxides, SrScxCoCo 1-xO3-delta (SSCx, x = 0-0.7). The significant effects of scandium-doping concentration on the phase structure, electrical conductivity, sintering performance, thermal and structural stability, cathode performance, and oxygen permeation performance of the SSCx membranes, were systematically studied. Also for a more in-depth understanding, the rate determination steps for the oxygen transport process through the membranes were clarified by theoretical and experimental investigation. It was found that only a minor amount of scandium (5 mol%) doping into the B-site of SrCoO3-delta can effectively stabilize the cubic phase structure, and thus significantly improve the electrical conductivity and

  9. Structure and Function of Thyroid Hormone Plasma Membrane Transporters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schweizer, Ulrich; Johannes, Jörg; Bayer, Dorothea; Braun, Doreen

    2014-01-01

    Thyroid hormones (TH) cross the plasma membrane with the help of transporter proteins. As charged amino acid derivatives, TH cannot simply diffuse across a lipid bilayer membrane, despite their notorious hydrophobicity. The identification of monocarboxylate transporter 8 (MCT8, SLC16A2) as a specific and very active TH transporter paved the way to the finding that mutations in the MCT8 gene cause a syndrome of psychomotor retardation in humans. The purpose of this review is to introduce the current model of transmembrane transport and highlight the diversity of TH transmembrane transporters. The interactions of TH with plasma transfer proteins, T3 receptors, and deiodinase are summarized. It is shown that proteins may bind TH owing to their hydrophobic character in hydrophobic cavities and/or by specific polar interaction with the phenolic hydroxyl, the aminopropionic acid moiety, and by weak polar interactions with the iodine atoms. These findings are compared with our understanding of how TH transporters interact with substrate. The presumed effects of mutations in MCT8 on protein folding and transport function are explained in light of the available homology model. PMID:25538896

  10. Membrane structure characterization using variable-period x-ray standing waves.

    OpenAIRE

    Zhang, R; Itri, R.; Caffrey, M.

    1998-01-01

    The variable-period x-ray standing wave (XSW) technique is emerging as a powerful tool for studying membrane structure. However, two significant problems arise when the method is used to characterize membranes of thickness dL < 100 A. First, the surface roughness, sigma(r), of the supporting reflecting mirror convolutes with the intrinsic half-width of the marker atom distribution in the membrane, sigma(in), and contributes to an apparent half-width, sigma, which is measured in the XSW experi...

  11. Molecular dynamics simulations highlight structural and functional alterations in deafness–related M34T mutation of connexin 26

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FrancescoZonta

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Mutations of the GJB2 gene encoding the connexin 26 (Cx26 gap junction protein, which is widelyexpressed in the inner ear, are the primary cause of hereditary non–syndromic hearing loss in severalpopulations. The deafness–associated single amino acid substitution of methionine 34 (M34 in the firsttransmembrane helix (TM1 with a threonine (T ensues in the production of mutant Cx26M34Tchannels that are correctly synthesize and assembled in the plasma membrane. However, mutantchannels overexpressed in HeLa cells retain only 9% of the wild type unitary conductance. Here we extend and rationalize those findings by comparing wild type Cx26 (Cx26WT and Cx26M34T mutant channels in silico, using molecular dynamics simulation. Our results indicate that the quaternary structure of the Cx26M34T hemichannel is altered at the level of the pore funnel due to the disruption of the hydrophobic interaction between M34 and tryptophan 3 (W3 in the N–terminal helix (NTH. Our simulations also show that external force stimuli applied to the NTHs can detach them from the inner wall of the pore more readily in the mutant than in the wild type hemichannel. These structural alterations significantly increase the free energy barrier encountered by permeating ions, correspondingly decreasing the unitary conductance of the Cx26M34T hemichannel. Our results accord with the proposal that the mutant resides most of the time in a low conductance state. However, the small the displacement of the NTHs in our Cx26M34T hemichannel model is not compatible with the formation of a pore plug as in the related Cx26M34A mutant.

  12. Structure-Guided Mutations in the Terminal Organelle Protein MG491 Cause Major Motility and Morphologic Alterations on Mycoplasma genitalium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Querol, Enrique; Piñol, Jaume; Fita, Ignacio; Calisto, Bárbara M.

    2016-01-01

    The emergent human pathogen Mycoplasma genitalium, with one of the smallest genomes among cells capable of growing in axenic cultures, presents a flask-shaped morphology due to a protrusion of the cell membrane, known as the terminal organelle, that is involved in cell adhesion and motility and is an important virulence factor of this microorganism. The terminal organelle is supported by a cytoskeleton complex of about 300 nm in length that includes three substructures: the terminal button, the rod and the wheel complex. The crystal structure of the MG491 protein, a proposed component of the wheel complex, has been determined at ~3 Å resolution. MG491 subunits are composed of a 60-residue N-terminus, a central three-helix-bundle spanning about 150 residues and a C-terminal region that appears to be quite flexible and contains the region that interacts with MG200, another key protein of the terminal organelle. The MG491 molecule is a tetramer presenting a unique organization as a dimer of asymmetric pairs of subunits. The asymmetric arrangement results in two very different intersubunit interfaces between the central three-helix-bundle domains, which correlates with the formation of only ~50% of the intersubunit disulfide bridges of the single cysteine residue found in MG491 (Cys87). Moreover, M. genitalium cells with a point mutation in the MG491 gene causing the change of Cys87 to Ser present a drastic reduction in motility (as determined by microcinematography) and important alterations in morphology (as determined by electron microscopy), while preserving normal levels of the terminal organelle proteins. Other variants of MG491, designed also according to the structural information, altered significantly the motility and/or the cell morphology. Together, these results indicate that MG491 plays a key role in the functioning, organization and stabilization of the terminal organelle. PMID:27082435

  13. Structure and properties of PVDF membrane with PES-C addition via thermally induced phase separation process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Lishun; Sun, Junfen

    2014-12-01

    Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) membrane and PVDF membrane with phenolphthalein polyethersulfone (PES-C) addition were prepared via thermally induced phase separation (TIPS) method by using diphenyl carbonate (DPC) and dimethyl acetamide (DMAc) as mixed diluents. The effects of coagulation temperature and pre-evaporation time on structure and properties of membranes were studied. The changes of sewage flux in MBR and the attenuation coefficient of sewage flux were investigated. The resistance distributions of PVDF and PVDF/PES-C membranes were compared by resistance analysis. Membrane composition and structure were characterized by ATR-FTIR, TGA, SEM and AFM. The foulant on membranes was analyzed by FTIR. The contact angle of PVDF/PES-C membrane was lower than that of PVDF membrane. A thinner skin layer and a porous cellular support layer formed in PVDF/PES-C membrane and resulted in a higher porosity and pure water flux. The pure water flux and porosity of PVDF/PES-C membrane increased with rising coagulation temperature and decreased with extending pre-evaporation time. The flux attenuation coefficient, the cake layer resistance and internal fouling resistance of PVDF/PES-C membrane in MBR were smaller than those of PVDF membrane in MBR. The FTIR spectrum of foulant on membrane indicated that the foulant on PVDF/PES-C membrane was mostly composed of protein and polysaccharide, while the foulant on pure PVDF membrane included biopolymer clusters besides protein and polysaccharide.

  14. Structure, location, and lipid perturbations of melittin at the membrane interface.

    OpenAIRE

    Hristova, K; Dempsey, C E; White, S. H.

    2001-01-01

    Melittin is arguably the most widely studied amphipathic, membrane-lytic alpha-helical peptide. Although several lines of evidence suggest an interfacial membrane location at low concentrations, melittin's exact position and depth of penetration into the hydrocarbon core are unknown. Furthermore, the structural basis for its lytic action remains largely a matter of conjecture. Using a novel x-ray absolute-scale refinement method, we have now determined the location, orientation, and likely co...

  15. Micro-scale NMR Screening of New Detergents for Membrane Protein Structural Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Zhang, Qinghai; Horst, Reto; Geralt, Michael; Ma, Xingquan; Hong, Wen-Xu; Finn, M.G.; Stevens, Raymond C.; Wüthrich, Kurt

    2008-01-01

    The rate limiting step in biophysical characterization of membrane proteins is often the availability of suitable amounts of protein material. It was therefore of interest to demonstrate that micro-coil nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) technology can be used to screen microscale quantities of membrane proteins for proper folding in samples destined for structural studies. Micoscale NMR was then used to screen a series of newly designed zwitterionic phosphocholine detergents for their ability ...

  16. Probing Membrane Protein Structure Using Water Polarization Transfer Solid-State NMR

    OpenAIRE

    Williams, Jonathan K.; Hong, Mei

    2014-01-01

    Water plays an essential role in the structure and function of proteins, lipid membranes and other biological macromolecules. Solid-state NMR heteronuclear-detected 1H polarization transfer from water to biomolecules is a versatile approach for studying water-protein, water-membrane, and water-carbohydrate interactions in biology. We review radiofrequency pulse sequences for measuring water polarization transfer to biomolecules, the mechanisms of polarization transfer, and the application of ...

  17. Laser-Induced Fluorescence Photogrammetry for Dynamic Characterization of Transparent and Aluminized Membrane Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorrington, Adrian A.; Jones, Thomas W.; Danehy, Paul M.; Pappa, Richard S.

    2003-01-01

    Photogrammetry has proven to be a valuable tool for static and dynamic profiling of membrane based inflatable and ultra-lightweight space structures. However, the traditional photogrammetric targeting techniques used for solid structures, such as attached retro-reflective targets and white-light dot projection, have some disadvantages and are not ideally suited for measuring highly transparent or reflective membrane structures. In this paper, we describe a new laser-induced fluorescence based target generation technique that is more suitable for these types of structures. We also present several examples of non-contact non-invasive photogrammetric measurements of laser-dye doped polymers, including the dynamic measurement and modal analysis of a 1m-by-1m aluminized solar sail style membrane.

  18. Brucella ovis PA mutants for outer membrane proteins Omp10, Omp19, SP41, and BepC are not altered in their virulence and outer membrane properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidhu-Muñoz, Rebeca S; Sancho, Pilar; Vizcaíno, Nieves

    2016-04-15

    Mutants in several genes have been obtained on the genetic background of virulent rough (lacking O-polysaccharide) Brucella ovis PA. The target genes encode outer membrane proteins previously associated with the virulence of smooth (bearing O-polysaccharide chains in the lipopolysaccharide) Brucella strains. Multiple attempts to delete omp16, coding for a homologue to peptidoglycan-associated lipoproteins, were unsuccessful, which suggests that Omp16 is probably essential for in vitro survival of B. ovis PA. Single deletion of omp10 or omp19 - that encode two other outer membrane lipoproteins - was achieved, but the simultaneous removal of both genes failed, suggesting an essential complementary function between both proteins. Two other deletion mutants, defective in the Tol-C-homologue BepC or in the SP41 adhesin, were also obtained. Surprisingly when compared to previous results obtained with smooth Brucella, none of the B. ovis mutants showed attenuation in the virulence, either in the mouse model or in cellular models of professional and non-professional phagocytes. Additionally, and in contrast to the observations reported with smooth Brucella strains, several properties related to the outer membrane remained almost unaltered. These results evidence new distinctive traits between naturally rough B. ovis and smooth brucellae. PMID:27016758

  19. Effect of ConA—receptor interaction on the structure of cell membrane

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    DAIJIANWU; KECHUNLIN; 等

    1992-01-01

    Recently,the effect of ligand receptor interaction on the membrane structure of liposomes has been studied extensively,However,little is known about how it exists on biological membranes,In this paper,the effect of Concanavalin A(ConA) receptorinteratcion on the structure of cell membranes was studied by Circular DIchrosim(CD) and 31P Nuclear Magnetic Resonance(NMR).CD results of both the purified macrophage membranes and human erythrocyte hgosts(EG) showed that the conformation of membrane proteins changed after ConA binding.For further research,31P-NMR was used to detect the orgainzation of phosp[holipid molecules on macrophage membranes.After ConA binding,the tendercy to form non bilayer structure increased with the amount of ConA.The changes of 31P-NMR spectra of living macrophages might be partly due to the above stated reason too.In addition,ConA-receptor interaction also induced similar results of 31P-NMR spectra in EG.In contrast,wheat germ agglutinin (WGA),another kind of lectin,rarely showed the same influence.

  20. Single-particle electron microscopy in the study of membrane protein structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Zorzi, Rita; Mi, Wei; Liao, Maofu; Walz, Thomas

    2016-02-01

    Single-particle electron microscopy (EM) provides the great advantage that protein structure can be studied without the need to grow crystals. However, due to technical limitations, this approach played only a minor role in the study of membrane protein structure. This situation has recently changed dramatically with the introduction of direct electron detection device cameras, which allow images of unprecedented quality to be recorded, also making software algorithms, such as three-dimensional classification and structure refinement, much more powerful. The enhanced potential of single-particle EM was impressively demonstrated by delivering the first long-sought atomic model of a member of the biomedically important transient receptor potential channel family. Structures of several more membrane proteins followed in short order. This review recounts the history of single-particle EM in the study of membrane proteins, describes the technical advances that now allow this approach to generate atomic models of membrane proteins and provides a brief overview of some of the membrane protein structures that have been studied by single-particle EM to date. PMID:26470917

  1. Structural Study and Modification of Support Layer for Forward Osmosis Membranes

    KAUST Repository

    Shi, Meixia

    2016-06-01

    Water scarcity is a serious global issue, due to the increasing population and developing economy, and membrane technology is an essential way to address this problem. Forward osmosis (FO) is an emerging membrane process, due to its low energy consumption (not considering the draw solute regeneration). A bottleneck to advance this technology is the design of the support layer for FO membranes to minimize the internal concentration polarization. In this dissertation, we focus on the structural study and modification of the support layer for FO membranes. Firstly, we digitally reconstruct different membrane morphologies in 3D and propose a method for predicting performance in ultrafiltration operations. Membranes with analogous morphologies are later used as substrate for FO membranes. Secondly, we experimentally apply substrates with different potentially suitable morphologies as an FO support layer. We investigate their FO performance after generating a selective polyamide layer on the top, by interfacial polymerization. Among the different substrates we include standard asymmetric porous membranes prepared from homopolymers, such as polysulfone. Additionally block copolymer membrane and Anodisc alumina membrane are chosen based on their exceptional structures, with cylindrical pores at least in part. 3D digitally reconstructed porous substrates, analogous to those investigated for ultrafiltration, are then used to model the performance in FO operation. Finally, we analyze the effect of intermediate layers between the porous substrate and the interfacial polymerized layer. We investigate two materials including chitosan and hydrogel. The main results are the following. Pore-scale modeling for digital membrane generation effectively predicts the velocity profile in different layers of the membrane and the performance in UF experiments. Flow simulations confirm the advantage of finger-like substrates over sponge-like ones, when high water permeance is sought

  2. Genetic study of a membrane protein: DNA sequence alterations due to 17 lamB point mutations affecting adsorption of phage lambda.

    OpenAIRE

    Clément, J M; Lepouce, E; Marchal, C.; Hofnung, M

    1983-01-01

    Gene lamB encodes the outer membrane receptor for phage lambda in Escherichia coli K12. We have determined the DNA sequence alterations of 17 lamB point mutations which result in resistance to phage lambda h+. The mutations correspond to four phenotypic classes according to the pattern of growth of three phages which use the lambda receptor: lambda h (a one-step host-range derivative of lambda h+), lambda hh* (a two-step host-range derivative of lambda h+) and K10 (another lambdoid phage). Fo...

  3. Structure and dynamics of water and lipid molecules in charged anionic DMPG lipid bilayer membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rønnest, A. K.; Peters, G. H.; Hansen, F. Y.; Taub, H.; Miskowiec, A.

    2016-04-01

    Molecular dynamics simulations have been used to investigate the influence of the valency of counter-ions on the structure of freestanding bilayer membranes of the anionic 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoglycerol (DMPG) lipid at 310 K and 1 atm. At this temperature, the membrane is in the fluid phase with a monovalent counter-ion and in the gel phase with a divalent counter-ion. The diffusion constant of water as a function of its depth in the membrane has been determined from mean-square-displacement calculations. Also, calculated incoherent quasielastic neutron scattering functions have been compared to experimental results and used to determine an average diffusion constant for all water molecules in the system. On extrapolating the diffusion constants inferred experimentally to a temperature of 310 K, reasonable agreement with the simulations is obtained. However, the experiments do not have the sensitivity to confirm the diffusion of a small component of water bound to the lipids as found in the simulations. In addition, the orientation of the dipole moment of the water molecules has been determined as a function of their depth in the membrane. Previous indirect estimates of the electrostatic potential within phospholipid membranes imply an enormous electric field of 108-109 V m-1, which is likely to have great significance in controlling the conformation of translocating membrane proteins and in the transfer of ions and molecules across the membrane. We have calculated the membrane potential for DMPG bilayers and found ˜1 V (˜2 ṡ 108 V m-1) when in the fluid phase with a monovalent counter-ion and ˜1.4 V (˜2.8 ṡ 108 V m-1) when in the gel phase with a divalent counter-ion. The number of water molecules for a fully hydrated DMPG membrane has been estimated to be 9.7 molecules per lipid in the gel phase and 17.5 molecules in the fluid phase, considerably smaller than inferred experimentally for 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphorylcholine (DMPC

  4. Reversible structural alterations of undifferentiated and differentiated human neuroblastoma cells induced by phorbol ester.

    OpenAIRE

    Tint, I S; Bonder, E. M.; Feder, H. H.; Reboulleau, C P; Vasiliev, J M; Gelfand, I M

    1992-01-01

    Morphological alterations in the structure of undifferentiated and morphologically differentiated human neuroblastoma cells induced by phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), an activator of protein kinase C, were examined by video microscopy and immunomorphology. In undifferentiated cells, PMA induced the formation of motile actin-rich lamellas and of stable cylindrical processes rich in microtubules. Formation of stable processes resulted either from the collapse of lamellas or the movement ...

  5. The structure of ions and zwitterionic lipids regulates the charge of dipolar membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szekely, Or; Steiner, Ariel; Szekely, Pablo; Amit, Einav; Asor, Roi; Tamburu, Carmen; Raviv, Uri

    2011-06-21

    In pure water, zwitterionic lipids form lamellar phases with an equilibrium water gap on the order of 2 to 3 nm as a result of the dominating van der Waals attraction between dipolar bilayers. Monovalent ions can swell those neutral lamellae by a small amount. Divalent ions can adsorb onto dipolar membranes and charge them. Using solution X-ray scattering, we studied how the structure of ions and zwitterionic lipids regulates the charge of dipolar membranes. We found that unlike monovalent ions that weakly interact with all of the examined dipolar membranes, divalent and trivalent ions adsorb onto membranes containing lipids with saturated tails, with an association constant on the order of ∼10 M(-1). One double bond in the lipid tail is sufficient to prevent divalent ion adsorption. We suggest that this behavior is due to the relatively loose packing of lipids with unsaturated tails that increases the area per lipid headgroup, enabling their free rotation. Divalent ion adsorption links two lipids and limits their free rotation. The ion-dipole interaction gained by the adsorption of the ions onto unsaturated membranes is insufficient to compensate for the loss of headgroup free-rotational entropy. The ion-dipole interaction is stronger for cations with a higher valence. Nevertheless, polyamines behave as monovalent ions near dipolar interfaces in the sense that they interact weakly with the membrane surface, whereas in the bulk their behavior is similar to that of multivalent cations. Advanced data analysis and comparison with theory provide insight into the structure and interactions between ion-induced regulated charged interfaces. This study models biologically relevant interactions between cell membranes and various ions and the manner in which the lipid structure governs those interactions. The ability to monitor these interactions creates a tool for probing systems that are more complex and forms the basis for controlling the interactions between dipolar

  6. Changes in lipids of thymocyte plasma membranes under the effect of ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A thymocyte plasma membrane suspension was irradiated with a dose of 5±104 Gy. An increase in the rate of lipid peroxidation and a change in the phospholipid composition of membranes were revealed. The alteration of the plasma membrane structure was characterized by a change in the membrane charge and decrease in the lipid viscosity

  7. Structure, Function and Regulation of Outer Membrane Proteins Involved in Drug Transport in Enterobactericeae: the OmpF/C - TolC Case.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masi, Muriel; Pagès, Jean-Marie

    2013-01-01

    Antibiotic translocation across membranes of Gram-negative bacteria is a key step for the activity on their specific intracellular targets. Resistant bacteria control their membrane permeability as a first line of defense to protect themselves against external toxic compounds such as antibiotics and biocides. On one hand, resistance to small hydrophilic antibiotics such as ß-lactams and fluoroquinolones frequently results from the « closing » of their way in: the general outer membrane porins. On the other hand, an effective way out for a wide range of antibiotics is provided by TolC-like proteins, which are outer membrane components of multidrug efflux pumps. Accordingly, altered membrane permeability, including porin modifications and/or efflux pumps' overexpression, is always associated to multidrug resistance (MDR) in a number of clinical isolates. Several recent studies have highlighted our current understanding of porins/TolC structures and functions in Enterobacteriaceae. Here, we review the transport of antibiotics through the OmpF/C general porins and the TolC-like channels with regards to recent data on their structure, function, assembly, regulation and contribution to bacterial resistance. Because MDR strains have evolved global strategies to identify and fight our antibiotic arsenal, it is important to constantly update our global knowledge on antibiotic transport. PMID:23569467

  8. Structure and composition of altered riparian forests in an agricultural Amazonian landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagy, R Chelsea; Porder, Stephen; Neill, Christopher; Brando, Paulo; Quintino, Raimundo Mota; do Nascimento, Sebastiâo Aviz

    2015-09-01

    Deforestation and fragmentation influence the microclimate, vegetation structure, and composition of remaining patches of tropical forest. In the southern Amazon, at the frontier of cropland expansion, forests are converted and fragmented in a pattern that leaves standing riparian forests whose dimensions are mandated by the Brazilian National Forest Code. These altered riparian forests share many characteristics of well-studied upland forest fragments, but differ because they remain connected to larger areas of forest downstream, and because they may experience wetter soil conditions because reduction of forest cover in the surrounding watershed raises groundwater levels and increases stream runoff. We compared forest regeneration, structure, composition, and diversity in four areas of intact riparian forest and four areas each of narrow, medium, and wide altered riparian forests that have been surrounded by agriculture since the early 1980s. We found that seedling abundance was reduced by as much as 64% and sapling abundance was reduced by as much as 67% in altered compared to intact riparian forests. The most pronounced differences between altered and intact forest occurred near forest edges and within the narrowest sections of altered riparian forests. Woody plant species composition differed and diversity was reduced in altered forests compared to intact riparian forests. However, despite being fragmented for several decades, large woody plant biomass and carbon storage, the number of live or dead large woody plants, mortality rates, and the size distribution of woody plants did not differ significantly between altered and intact riparian forests. Thus, even in these relatively narrow forests with high edge: area ratios, we saw no evidence of the increases in mortality and declines in biomass that have been found in other tropical forest fragment studies. However, because of the changes in both species community and reduced regeneration, it is unclear how long

  9. Packaging and structural phenotype of brome mosaic virus capsid protein with altered N-terminal β-hexamer structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The first 45 amino acid region of brome mosaic virus (BMV) capsid protein (CP) contains RNA binding and structural domains that are implicated in the assembly of infectious virions. One such important structural domain encompassing amino acids 28QPVIV32, highly conserved between BMV and cowpea chlorotic mottle virus (CCMV), exhibits a β-hexamer structure. In this study we report that alteration of the β-hexamer structure by mutating 28QPVIV32 to 28AAAAA32 had no effect either on symptom phenotype, local and systemic movement in Chenopodium quinoa and RNA profile of in vivo assembled virions. However, sensitivity to RNase and assembly phenotypes distinguished virions assembled with CP subunits having β-hexamer from those of wild type. A comparison of 3-D models obtained by cryo electron microscopy revealed overall similar structural features for wild type and mutant virions, with small but significant differences near the 3-fold axes of symmetry.

  10. Structure, Function, Self-Assembly and Origin of Simple Membrane Proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew

    2003-01-01

    Integral membrane proteins perform such essential cellular functions as transport of ions, nutrients and waste products across cell walls, transduction of environmental signals, regulation of cell fusion, recognition of other cells, energy capture and its conversion into high-energy compounds. In fact, 30-40% of genes in modem organisms codes for membrane proteins. Although contemporary membrane proteins or their functional assemblies can be quite complex, their transmembrane fragments are usually remarkably simple. The most common structural motif for these fragments is a bundle of alpha-helices, but occasionally it could be a beta-barrel. In a series of molecular dynamics computer simulations we investigated self-organizing properties of simple membrane proteins based on these structural motifs. Specifically, we studied folding and insertion into membranes of short, nonpolar or amphiphatic peptides. We also investigated glycophorin A, a peptide that forms sequence-specific dimers, and a transmembrane aggregate of four identical alpha-helices that forms an efficient and selective voltage-gated proton channel was investigated. Many peptides are attracted to water-membrane interfaces. Once at the interface, nonpolar peptides spontaneously fold to a-helices. Whenever the sequence permits, peptides that contain both polar and nonpolar amino also adopt helical structures, in which polar and nonpolar amino acid side chains are immersed in water and membrane, respectively. Specific identity of side chains is less important. Helical peptides at the interface could insert into the membrane and adopt a transmembrane conformation. However, insertion of a single helix is unfavorable because polar groups in the peptide become completely dehydrated upon insertion. The unfavorable free energy of insertion can be regained by spontaneous association of peptides in the membrane. The first step in this process is the formation of dimers, although the most common are aggregates of 4

  11. Crystal Structure of Mitochondrial Respiratory Membrane Protein Complex Ⅱ Determined

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    @@ Scientists at the CAS Institute of Biophysics (IBP) and Tsinghua University have gained new insights into the mechanism of mitochondria, the subcellular structures which generate energy for living cells.

  12. Impact of the antimicrobial peptide Novicidin on membrane structure and integrity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Søren B; Otzen, Daniel Erik

    2010-01-01

    We have studied the impact of an 18-residue cationic antimicrobial peptide Novicidin (Nc) on the structure and integrity of partially anionic lipid membranes using oriented circular dichroism (OCD), quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCM-D), dual polarization interferometry (DPI......), calcein dye leakage and fluorescence spectroscopy. OCD consistently showed that Nc is bound in an alpha-helical, surface bound state over a range of peptide to lipid (P/L) ratios up to approximately 1:15. Realignment of Nc at higher P/L ratios correlates to loss of membrane integrity as shown by Laurdan...... lipid membranes emphasize the importance of including the dissipation factor in data analysis, revealing formation of a highly hydrated film after exposure to 3muMNc. Our findings suggest a carpet mechanism of membrane disruption in which peptide binding first induces leakage at a critical surface...

  13. Stability and structure of the membrane protein transporter Ffh is modulated by substrates and lipids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reinau, Marika Ejby; Otzen, Daniel

    2009-01-01

    The cytosolic protein Ffh transports membrane proteins from the ribosome to the inner membrane in complex with 4.5S RNA. Here we show that native Ffh binds to the hydrophobic probe ANS in a 1 Ffh:3 ANS stoichiometry, revealing a hydrophobic binding site. Thermal precipitation of Ffh is shifted...... the apoprotein. Escherichia coli lipid and DOPG (and to a smaller extent DOPC) increase Ffh's α-helical content, possibly related to Ffh's role in guiding membrane proteins to the membrane. Binding is largely mediated by electrostatic interactions but does not protect Ffh against trypsinolysis. We conclude...... that Ffh is a structurally flexible and dynamic protein whose stability is significantly modulated by the environment. © 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved....

  14. Towards structural and functional analysis of the plant plasma membrane proton pump

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Justesen, Bo Højen

    The plasma membrane H+-ATPase is a proton pump essential for several physiological important processes in plants. Through the extrusion of protons from the cell, the PM H+-ATPase establishes and maintains a proton gradient used by proton coupled transporters and secondary active transport of...... nutrients and metabolites across the plasma membrane. Additional processes involving the PM H+-ATPase includes plant growth, development, and response to biotic and abiotic stresses. Extensive efforts have been made in attempts to elucidate the detailed physiological role and biochemical characteristics of...... plasma membrane H+-ATPases. Studies on the plasma membrane H+-ATPases have involved both in vivo and in vitro approaches, with the latter employing either solubilisation by detergent micelles, or reconstitution into lipid vesicles. Despite resulting in a large body of information on structure, function...

  15. Structural Determinants for Partitioning of Lipids and Proteins Between Coexisting Fluid Phases in Giant Plasma Membrane Vesicles

    OpenAIRE

    Sengupta, Prabuddha; Hammond, Adam; Holowka, David; Baird, Barbara

    2007-01-01

    The structural basis for organizational heterogeneity of lipids and proteins underlies fundamental questions about the plasma membrane of eukaryotic cells. A current hypothesis is the participation of liquid ordered (Lo) membrane domains (lipid rafts) in dynamic compartmentalization of membrane function, but it has been difficult to demonstrate the existence of these domains in live cells. Recently, giant plasma membrane vesicles (GPMVs) obtained by chemically induced blebbing of cultured cel...

  16. Forest to reclaimed mine land use change leads to altered ecosystem structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, Jeffrey A; Currie, William S; Eshleman, Keith N; Kuers, Karen; Monteleone, Susan; Negley, Tim L; Pohlad, Bob R; Thomas, Carolyn L

    2008-01-01

    The United States' use of coal results in many environmental alterations. In the Appalachian coal belt region, one widespread alteration is conversion of forest to reclaimed mineland. The goal of this study was to quantify the changes to ecosystem structure and function associated with a conversion from forest to reclaimed mine grassland by comparing a small watershed containing a 15-year-old reclaimed mine with a forested, reference watershed in western Maryland. Major differences were apparent between the two watersheds in terms of biogeochemistry. Total C, N, and P pools were all substantially lower at the mined site, mainly due to the removal of woody biomass but also, in the case of P, to reductions in soil pools. Mineral soil C, N, and P pools were 96%, 79%, and 69% of native soils, respectively. Although annual runoff from the watersheds was similar, the mined watershed exhibited taller, narrower storm peaks as a result of a higher soil bulk density and decreased infiltration rates. Stream export of N was much lower in the mined watershed due to lower net nitrification rates and nitrate concentrations in soil. However, stream export of sediment and P and summer stream temperature were much higher. Stream leaf decomposition was reduced and macroinvertebrate community structure was altered as a result of these changes to the stream environment. This land use change leads to substantial, long-term changes in ecosystem capital and function. PMID:18372559

  17. Small changes in environmental parameters lead to alterations in antibiotic resistance, cell morphology and membrane fatty acid composition in Staphylococcus lugdunensis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcus J Crompton

    Full Text Available Staphylococcus lugdunensis has emerged as a major cause of community-acquired and nosocomial infections. This bacterium can rapidly adapt to changing environmental conditions to survive and capitalize on opportunities to colonize and infect through wound surfaces. It was proposed that S. lugdunensis would have underlying alterations in metabolic homeostasis to provide the necessary levels of adaptive protection. The aims of this project were to examine the impacts of subtle variations in environmental conditions on growth characteristics, cell size and membrane fatty acid composition in S. lugdunensis. Liquid broth cultures of S. lugdunensis were grown under varying combinations of pH (6-8, temperature (35-39°C and osmotic pressure (0-5% sodium chloride w/w to reflect potential ranges of conditions encountered during transition from skin surfaces to invasion of wound sites. The cells were harvested at the mid-exponential phase of growth and assessed for antibiotic minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC, generation time, formation of small colony variants, cell size (by scanning electron microscopy and membrane fatty acid composition. Stress regimes with elevated NaCl concentrations resulted in significantly higher antibiotic resistance (MIC and three of the combinations with 5% NaCl had increased generation times (P<0.05. It was found that all ten experimental growth regimes, including the control and centroid cultures, yielded significantly different profiles of plasma membrane fatty acid composition (P<0.0001. Alterations in cell size (P<0.01 were also observed under the range of conditions with the most substantial reduction occurring when cells were grown at 39°C, pH 8 (514±52 nm, mean ± Standard Deviation compared with cells grown under control conditions at 37°C with pH 7 (702±76 nm, P<0.01. It was concluded that S. lugdunensis responded to slight changes in environmental conditions by altering plasma membrane fatty acid composition

  18. Structural health monitoring (vibration) as a tool for identifying structural alterations of the lumbar spine: a twin control study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawchuk, Gregory N; Hartvigsen, Jan; Edgecombe, Tiffany; Prasad, Narasimha; van Dieen, Jaap H

    2016-01-01

    Structural health monitoring (SHM) is an engineering technique used to identify mechanical abnormalities not readily apparent through other means. Recently, SHM has been adapted for use in biological systems, but its invasive nature limits its clinical application. As such, the purpose of this project was to determine if a non-invasive form of SHM could identify structural alterations in the spines of living human subjects. Lumbar spines of 10 twin pairs were visualized by magnetic resonance imaging then assessed by a blinded radiologist to determine whether twin pairs were structurally concordant or discordant. Vibration was then applied to each subject's spine and the resulting response recorded from sensors overlying lumbar spinous processes. The peak frequency, area under the curve and the root mean square were computed from the frequency response function of each sensor. Statistical analysis demonstrated that in twins whose structural appearance was discordant, peak frequency was significantly different between twin pairs while in concordant twins, no outcomes were significantly different. From these results, we conclude that structural changes within the spine can alter its vibration response. As such, further investigation of SHM to identify spinal abnormalities in larger human populations is warranted. PMID:26964507

  19. Tethered bilayer membranes as a complementary tool for functional and structural studies: The pyolysin case.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preta, Giulio; Jankunec, Marija; Heinrich, Frank; Griffin, Sholeem; Sheldon, Iain Martin; Valincius, Gintaras

    2016-09-01

    We demonstrate the use of tethered bilayer lipid membranes (tBLMs) as an experimental platform for functional and structural studies of membrane associated proteins by electrochemical techniques. The reconstitution of the cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC) pyolysin (PLO) from Trueperella pyogenes into tBLMs was followed in real-time by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). Changes of the EIS parameters of the tBLMs upon exposure to PLO solutions were consistent with the dielectric barrier damage occurring through the formation of water-filled pores in membranes. Parallel experiments involving a mutant version of PLO, which is able to bind to the membranes but does not form oligomer pores, strengthen the reliability of this methodology, since no change in the electrochemical impedance was observed. Complementary atomic force microscopy (AFM) and neutron reflectometry (NR) measurements revealed structural details of the membrane bound PLO, consistent with the structural transformations of the membrane bound toxins found for other cholesterol dependent cytolysins. In this work, using the tBLMs platform we also observed a protective effect of the dynamin inhibitor Dynasore against pyolysin as well as pneumolysin. An effect of Dynasore in tBLMs, which was earlier observed in experiments with live cells, confirms the biological relevance of the tBLMs models, as well as demonstrates the potential of the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy to quantify membrane damage by the pore forming toxins. In conclusion, tBLMs are a reliable and complementary method to explore the activity of CDCs in eukaryotic cells and to develop strategies to limit the toxic effects of CDCs. PMID:27211243

  20. Structure of an Intrinsically Disordered Stress Protein Alone and Bound to a Membrane Surface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkinson, John; Clarke, Matthew W; Warnica, Josephine M; Boddington, Kelly F; Graether, Steffen P

    2016-08-01

    Dehydrins are a group of intrinsically disordered proteins that protect plants from damage caused by drought, cold, and high salinity. Like other intrinsically disordered proteins, dehydrins can gain structure when bound to a ligand. Previous studies have shown that dehydrins are able to protect liposomes from cold damage, but the interactions that drive membrane binding and the detailed structure of the bound and unbound forms are not known. We use an ensemble-structure approach to generate models of a dehydrin known as K2 in the presence and absence of sodium dodecyl sulfate micelles, and we docked the bound structure to the micelle. The collection of residual dipolar coupling data, amide protection factors, and paramagnetic relaxation enhancement distances, in combination with chemical shifts and relaxation measurements, allows for determining plausible structures that are not otherwise visible in time-averaged structural data. The results show that in the bound structure, the conserved lysines are important for membrane binding, whereas the flanking hydrophobic residues play a lesser role. The unbound structure shows a high level of disorder and an extended structure. We propose that the structural differences between bound and unbound forms allow dehydrins to act as molecular shields in their unbound state and as membrane protectants in their bound state. Unlike α-synuclein, the significant gain of α-helicity in K2 at low concentrations of sodium dodecyl sulfate is not due to a decrease in the critical micelle concentration. The study provides structural insight into how a disordered protein can interact with a membrane surface. PMID:27508433

  1. Structure, composition, and strength of nitrifying membrane-aerated biofilms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pellicer i Nàcher, Carles; Smets, Barth F.

    2014-01-01

    achieve full nitrification revealed a significantly different structure of nitrifying MABR biofilms with respect to its co-diffusion counterparts reported in the literature (up to now assumed to have similar properties). Different levels of shear stress and oxygen loadings during MABR operation also...

  2. Alteration of 8-epi-prostaglandin F2α in plasma and RBC membrane during irradiation injury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    8-epi-prostaglandin F2α (8-epi-PGF2α) is formed by oxygen free radical-catalyzed lipid peroxidation and is independent of cyclooxygenase. The dogs were irradiated with 60Co-γ rays at a total dose of 3 Gy. During and after irradiation, the 8-epi-PGF2α concentrations of their plasma and RBC membrane were significantly increased and this reaction could be inhibited by superoxide dismutase. On the other hand, melondialdehyde level in either plasma or RBC membrane was not changed. These results suggest that 8-epi-PGF2α might serve as a new and sensitive marker of peroxidation reaction induced by radiation injury. (10 refs., 2 figs., 3 tabs.)

  3. Increased expression of a phloem membrane protein encoded by NHL26 alters phloem export and sugar partitioning in Arabidopsis

    OpenAIRE

    Vilaine, Francoise; Kerchev, Pavel Ivanov; Clément, Gilles; Batailler, Brigitte; Cayla, Thibaud; Bill, Laurence; Gissot, Lionel; Dinant, Sylvie

    2013-01-01

    The complex process of phloem sugar transport involves symplasmic and apoplasmic events. We characterized Arabidopsis thaliana lines ectopically expressing a phloem-specific gene encoding NDR1/HIN1-like26 (NHL26), a putative membrane protein. NHL26 overexpressor plants grew more slowly than wild-type plants, accumulated high levels of carbohydrates in mature leaves, and had a higher shoot biomass, contrasting with slower root growth and a lower seed yield. Similar effects were observed when N...

  4. Effect of non-solvent additives on the morphology, pore structure, and direct contact membrane distillation performance of PVDF-CTFE hydrophobic membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Libing; Wu, Zhenjun; Zhang, Yong; Wei, Yuansong; Wang, Jun

    2016-07-01

    Four common types of additives for polymer membrane preparation including organic macromolecule and micromolecule additives, inorganic salts and acids, and the strong non-solvent H2O were used to prepare poly (vinylidene fluoride-co-chlorotrifluoroethylene) (PVDF-CTFE) hydrophobic flat-sheet membranes. Membrane properties including morphology, porosity, hydrophobicity, pore size and pore distribution were investigated, and the permeability was evaluated via direct contact membrane distillation (DCMD) of 3.5g/L NaCl solution in a DCMD configuration. Both inorganic and organic micromolecule additives were found to slightly influence membrane hydrophobicity. Polyethylene glycol (PEG), organic acids, LiCl, MgCl2, and LiCl/H2O mixtures were proved to be effective additives to PVDF-CTFE membranes due to their pore-controlling effects and the capacity to improve the properties and performance of the resultant membranes. The occurrence of a pre-gelation process showed that when organic and inorganic micromolecules were added to PVDF-CTFE solution, the resultant membranes presented a high interconnectivity structure. The membrane prepared with dibutyl phthalate (DBP) showed a nonporous surface and symmetrical cross-section. When H2O and LiCl/H2O mixtures were also used as additives, they were beneficial for solid-liquid demixing, especially when LiCl/H2O mixed additives were used. The membrane prepared with 5% LiCl+2% H2O achieved a flux of 24.53kg/(m(2)·hr) with 99.98% salt rejection. This study is expected to offer a reference not only for PVDF-CTFE membrane preparation but also for other polymer membranes. PMID:27372116

  5. Experimental study on alteration of adrenergic receptors activity in neuronal membranes protein of cerebral cortex following brain trauma in rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Xin-wei; XU Ru-xiang; QI Yi-long; CHEN Chang-cai

    2001-01-01

    Objective: To define the course of changes taken by α1 and β adrenergic receptors (AR) activity after traumatic brain injury (TBI) and explore the approach for secondary brain injury (SBI) management. Methods: The neuronal membrane protein of cortex were extracted from the rats subject to traumatic brain injury, and the changes of α1- and β-AR activities in the neuronal membranes were examined by radio ligand binding assay (RLBA). Results: α1- and β-AR activities underwent obvious changes, reaching their peak values at 24 h after TBI. α1-AR binding density (Bmax) reduced by 22.6%while the ligand affinity increased by 66.7%, and for β-AR, however, Bmax increased by 116.9% and the ligand affinity reduced by 50.7%. Their antagonists could counteract the changes ofα1- and β-AR activity. Conclusion: The patterns of changes varies between α1- and β-AR activity after TBI, suggesting their different roles in the neuronal membranes after brain trauma, and timely administration of AR antagonists is potentially beneficial in TBI management.

  6. Nano-scale structure in membranes in relation to enzyme action - computer simulation vs. experiment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Høyrup, P.; Jørgensen, Kent; Mouritsen, O.G.

    2002-01-01

    lengths are in the nano-meter range. The nano-scale structure is believed to be important for controlling the activity of enzymes, specifically phospholipases, which act at bilayer membranes. We propose here a lattice-gas statistical mechanical model with appropriate dynamics to account for the non......-equilibrium action of the enzyme phospholipase A(2) which hydrolyses lipid-bilayer substrates. The resulting product molecules are assumed to induce local variations in the membrane interfacial pressure. Monte Carlo simulations of the non-equilibrium properties of the model for one-component as well as binary lipid......There is increasing theoretical and experimental evidence indicating that small-scale domain structure and dynamical heterogeneity develop in lipid membranes as a consequence of the the underlying phase transitions and the associated density and composition fluctuations. The relevant coherence...

  7. Structural studies of the lipid membranes at the Siberia-2 synchrotron radiation source

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiselev, M. A.; Ermakova, E. V.; Ryabova, N. Yu.; Nayda, O. V.; Zabelin, A. V.; Pogorely, D. K.; Korneev, V. N.; Balagurov, A. M.

    2010-05-01

    Lipid membranes are a subject of contemporary interdisciplinary studies at the junction of biology, biophysics, pharmacology, and bionanotechnology. The results of the structural studies of several types of lipid membranes by the lamellar and lateral diffraction of X-ray synchrotron radiation are presented. The experiments were performed at the Mediana and DICSI stations of the Siberia-2 synchrotron radiation source at the Russian Research Center Kurchatov Institute. The data obtained are compared with the results of studying lipid membranes at the small-angle scattering beamlines D22 and D24 at LURE (France) and at the A2 beamline at DESY (Germany). The parameters of the DICSI station are shown to meet the basic requirements for the structural study of lipid systems, which are of fundamental and applied interest.

  8. Nonlinear Dynamic Response of Flexible Membrane Structures to Blast Loads

    OpenAIRE

    Kapoor, Hitesh

    2005-01-01

    The present work describes the finite element (FE) modeling and dynamic response of lightweight, deployable shelters (tent) to large external blast loads. Flexible shelters have been used as temporary storage places for housing equipments, vehicles etc. TEMPER Tents, Small Shelter System have been widely used by Air Force and Army, for various field applications. These shelters have pressurized Collective Protection System (CPS), liner, fitted to the frame structure, which can provide protect...

  9. Crosslinked copolyazoles with a zwitterionic structure for organic solvent resistant membranes

    KAUST Repository

    Chisca, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    The preparation of crosslinked membranes with a zwitterionic structure based on a facile reaction between a newly synthesized copolyazole with free OH groups and (3-glycidyloxypropyl)trimethoxysilane (GPTMS) is reported. The new OH-functionalized copolyazole is soluble in common organic solvents, such as tetrahydrofuran (THF), dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), N,N′-dimethylformamide (DMF) and N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP) and can be easily processed by phase inversion. After crosslinking with GPTMS, the membranes acquire high solvent resistance. We show the membrane performance and the influence of the crosslinking reaction conditions on the thermal stability, surface polarity, pore morphology, and solvent resistance. By using UV-spectroscopy we monitored the solvent resistance of the membranes in four aggressive solvents (THF, DMSO, DMF and NMP) for 30 days. After this time, only minor changes (less than 2%) were detected for membranes subjected to a crosslinking reaction for 6 hours or longer. Our data suggest that the novel crosslinked membranes can be used for industrial applications in wide harsh environments in the presence of organic solvents.

  10. Structural Basis for Specific Membrane Targeting by the HIV-1 Gag Protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Summers, Michael F.

    2006-03-01

    In HIV-1 infected cells, newly synthesized retroviral Gag polyproteins are directed to specific cellular membranes where they assemble and bud to form immature virions. Membrane binding is mediated by Gag's matrix (MA) domain, a 132-residue polypeptide containing an N-terminal myristyl group that can adopt sequestered and exposed conformations. Membane specificity was recently shown to be regulated by phosphatidylinositol-(4,5)-bisphosphate (PI(4,5)P2), a cellular factor abundant in the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane (PM). We now show that phosphoinositides, including soluble analogs of PI(4,5)P2 with truncated lipids, bind HIV-1 MA and trigger myristate exposure. The phosphoinositol moiety and one of the fatty acid tails binds to a cleft on the surface of the protein. The other fatty acid chain of PI(4,5)P2 and the exposed myristyl group of MA bracket a conserved basic surface patch implicated in membrane binding. Our findings indicate that PI(4,5)P2 acts as both a trigger of the myristyl switch and as a membrane anchor, and suggest a structure-based mechanism for the specific targeting HIV-1 Gag to PI(4,5)P2-enriched membranes.

  11. Dimensional and Structural Control of Silica Aerogel Membranes for Miniaturized Motionless Gas Pumps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Shanyu; Jiang, Bo; Maeder, Thomas; Muralt, Paul; Kim, Nayoung; Matam, Santhosh Kumar; Jeong, Eunho; Han, Yen-Lin; Koebel, Matthias M

    2015-08-26

    With growing public interest in portable electronics such as micro fuel cells, micro gas total analysis systems, and portable medical devices, the need for miniaturized air pumps with minimal electrical power consumption is on the rise. Thus, the development and downsizing of next-generation thermal transpiration gas pumps has been investigated intensively during the last decades. Such a system relies on a mesoporous membrane that generates a thermomolecular pressure gradient under the action of an applied temperature bias. However, the development of highly miniaturized active membrane materials with tailored porosity and optimized pumping performance remains a major challenge. Here we report a systematic study on the manufacturing of aerogel membranes using an optimized, minimal-shrinkage sol-gel process, leading to low thermal conductivity and high air conductance. This combination of properties results in superior performance for miniaturized thermomolecular air pump applications. The engineering of such aerogel membranes, which implies pore structure control and chemical surface modification, requires both chemical processing know-how and a detailed understanding of the influence of the material properties on the spatial flow rate density. Optimal pumping performance was found for devices with integrated membranes with a density of 0.062 g cm(-3) and an average pore size of 142.0 nm. Benchmarking of such low-density hydrophobic active aerogel membranes gave an air flow rate density of 3.85 sccm·cm(-2) at an operating temperature of 400 °C. Such a silica aerogel membrane based system has shown more than 50% higher pumping performance when compared to conventional transpiration pump membrane materials as well as the ability to withstand higher operating temperatures (up to 440 °C). This study highlights new perspectives for the development of miniaturized thermal transpiration air pumps while offering insights into the fundamentals of molecular pumping in

  12. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons alter the structure of oceanic and oligotrophic microbial food webs

    KAUST Repository

    Cerezo, Maria Isabel

    2015-11-01

    One way organic pollutants reach remote oceanic regions is by atmospheric transport. During the Malaspina-2010 expedition, across the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans, we analyzed the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) effects on oceanic microbial food webs. We performed perturbation experiments adding PAHs to classic dilution experiments. The phytoplankton growth rates were reduced by more than 5 times, being Prochlorococcus spp. the most affected. 62% of the experiments showed a reduction in the grazing rates due to the presence of PAHs. For the remaining experiments, grazing usually increased likely due to cascading effects. We identified changes in the slope of the relation between the growth rate and the dilution fraction induced by the pollutants, moving from no grazing to V-shape, or to negative slope, indicative of grazing increase by cascade effects and alterations of the grazers\\' activity structure. Our perturbation experiments indicate that PAHs could influence the structure oceanic food-webs structure.

  13. [Phospholipids and structural modification of tissues and cell membranes for adaptation in high altitude mountains].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iakovlev, V M; Vishnevskiĭ, A A; Shanazarov, A S

    2012-01-01

    The nature of the impact of physical factors of high altitudes (3200 m) on the lipids of tissues and membranes of animals was researched. It was established that the adaptation process in Wistar rats was followed by peroxide degradation and subsequent modification of the phospholipids' structure of tissues and microsomal membranes. Adaptive phospholipids reconstruction takes place in microsomal membranes in the tissues of the lungs, brain, liver and skeletal muscles. Together with this, the amount of phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidic acid accumulates, indicating that the hydrolysis of phosphatidylinositol-4, 5 biphosphate to diacylglycerol and secondary messenger--inositol triphosphate, occurs. A decrease in temperature adaptation (+10 degrees C) leads to a more noticeable shift in peroxide oxidation of lipids, phospholipid structure in the tissues and membranes rather than adaptation in thermoneutral conditions (+30 degrees C). Modification of lipid composition of tissues and cell membranes in the highlands obviously increases the adaptive capabilities of cells of the whole body: physical performance and resistance to hypoxia increases in animals. PMID:22586936

  14. Understanding the structure and performance of self-assembled triblock terpolymer membranes

    KAUST Repository

    Pendergast, MaryTheresa M.

    2013-10-01

    Nanoporous membranes represent a possible route towards more precise particle and macromolecular separations, which are of interest across many industries. Here, we explored membranes with vertically-aligned nanopores formed from a poly(isoprene-. b-styrene-. b-4 vinyl pyridine) (ISV) triblock terpolymer via a hybrid self-assembly/nonsolvent induced phase separation process (S-NIPS). ISV concentration, solvent composition, and evaporation time in the S-NIPS process were varied to tailor ordering of the selective layer and produce enhanced water permeability. Here, water permeability was doubled over previous versions of ISV membranes. This was achieved by increasing volatile solvent concentration, thereby decreasing the evaporation period required for self-assembly. Fine-tuning was required, however, since overly-rapid evaporation did not yield the desired pore structure. Transport models, used to relate the in-. situ structure to the performance of these materials, revealed narrowing of pores and blocking by the dense region below. It was shown that these vertically aligned nanoporous membranes compare favorably with commercial ultrafiltration membranes formed by NIPS and track-etching processes, which suggests that there is practical value in further developing and optimizing these materials for specific industrial separations. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

  15. Lipid membrane structure and interactions in dimethyl sulfoxide/water mixtures.

    OpenAIRE

    Gordeliy, V. I.; Kiselev, M. A.; Lesieur, P.; Pole, A V; Teixeira, J.

    1998-01-01

    In this paper we have investigated via x-ray diffraction the influence of dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), known for its biological and therapeutic properties, on the structure of lipid membranes of dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) in excess of the solvent (DMSO/water) at mole DMSO fractions XDMSO in (0.1) and under equilibrium conditions. At small XDMSO

  16. Composition, structure and mechanical properties define performance of pulmonary surfactant membranes and films

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ortiz, Elisa Parra; Perez-Gil, Jesús

    2015-01-01

    breathing and avoiding alveolar collapse, especially at the end of expiration. The goal of the present review is to summarize current knowledge regarding the structure, lipid-protein interactions and mechanical features of surfactant membranes and films and how these properties correlate with surfactant...

  17. Fabrication and biocompatibility of an antimicrobial composite membrane with an asymmetric porous structure.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, J.; Zuo, Y.; Man, Y.; Mo, A.; Huang, C.; Liu, M.; Jansen, J.A.; Li, Y.

    2012-01-01

    A composite slurry from silver ion-substituted nano-hydroxyapatite, titania nano-particles and polyamide 66 (Ag-nHA/TiO(2)/PA66) was prepared and used to fabricate a novel antimicrobial membrane with a gradient porous structure for guided bone regeneration (GBR). Subsequently, assays were performed

  18. The asymmetrical structure of Golgi apparatus membranes revealed by in situ atomic force microscope.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haijiao Xu

    Full Text Available The Golgi apparatus has attracted intense attentions due to its fascinating morphology and vital role as the pivot of cellular secretory pathway since its discovery. However, its complex structure at the molecular level remains elusive due to limited approaches. In this study, the structure of Golgi apparatus, including the Golgi stack, cisternal structure, relevant tubules and vesicles, were directly visualized by high-resolution atomic force microscope. We imaged both sides of Golgi apparatus membranes and revealed that the outer leaflet of Golgi membranes is relatively smooth while the inner membrane leaflet is rough and covered by dense proteins. With the treatment of methyl-β-cyclodextrin and Triton X-100, we confirmed the existence of lipid rafts in Golgi apparatus membrane, which are mostly in the size of 20 nm -200 nm and appear irregular in shape. Our results may be of significance to reveal the structure-function relationship of the Golgi complex and pave the way for visualizing the endomembrane system in mammalian cells at the molecular level.

  19. Nano-Structured Proton Exchange Membrane for Fuel Cell

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wu Chien-Suen; Lin Fan-Yen; Chu Peter P

    2005-01-01

    @@ 1Introduction Nano-structured materials are characterized by long range ordering of the nano-dimensioned quantum dot units. They have been found to deliver substantially different (electric, optical, magnetic and physical) properties from that of the bulk. The differences are mainly due to the increases of surface charge with large fraction of grain boundaries, and the periodical potential field created by the ordered nano-domains. Specifically,the issues considered in "nano ionics" are the degree of interaction, the charge distribution on the interfaces where they become obvious in ionic properties and thermodynamics such as mobility of charge carriers. Major efforts in this direction are focused on:

  20. Nanoclay-Directed Structure and Morphology in PVDF Electrospun Membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyunghwan Yoon

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The incorporation of organically modified Lucentite nanoclay dramatically modifies the structure and morphology of the PVDF electrospun fibers. In a molecular level, the nanoclay preferentially stabilizes the all-trans conformation of the polymer chain, promoting an α to β transformation of the crystalline phase. The piezoelectric properties of the β-phase carry great promise for energy harvest applications. At a larger scale, the nanoclay facilitates the formation of highly uniform, bead-free fibers. Such an effect can be attributed to the enhanced conductivity and viscoelasticity of the PVDF-clay suspension. The homogenous distribution of the directionally aligned nanoclays imparts advanced mechanical properties to the nanofibers.

  1. A MYLK variant regulates asthmatic inflammation via alterations in mRNA secondary structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ting; Zhou, Tong; Saadat, Laleh; Garcia, Joe G N

    2015-06-01

    Myosin light-chain kinase (MYLK) is a gene known to be significantly associated with severe asthma in African Americans. Here we further examine the molecular function of a single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), located in the non-muscle myosin light-chain kinase isoform (nmMLCK), in asthma susceptibility and pathobiology. We identified nmMLCK variant (reference SNP: rs9840993, NM_053025: 721C>T, c.439C>T) with a distinct mRNA secondary structure from the other variants. The nmMLCK variant (721C) secondary structure exhibits increased stability with an elongated half-life in the human endothelial cell, and greater efficiency in protein translation initiation owing to an increased accessibility to translation start site. Finally, nmMLCK expression of 721C- and 721T-containing MYLK transgenes were compared in nmMLCK(-/-) mice and confirmed deleterious effects of nmMLCK expression on asthmatic indices and implicated the augmented influence of MYLK 721C>T (c.439C>T) SNP on asthma severity. The confirmation of the novel mechanism of the regulation of asthmatic inflammation by a MYLK advances knowledge of the genetic basis for asthma disparities, and further suggests the potential of nmMLCK as a therapeutic target. Our study suggests that in addition to altering protein structure and function, non-synonymous SNPs may also lead to phenotypic disparity by altering protein expression. PMID:25271083

  2. Cortical Structure Alterations and Social Behavior Impairment in p50-Deficient Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonini, Sara Anna; Mastinu, Andrea; Maccarinelli, Giuseppina; Mitola, Stefania; Premoli, Marika; La Rosa, Luca Rosario; Ferrari-Toninelli, Giulia; Grilli, Mariagrazia; Memo, Maurizio

    2016-06-01

    Alterations in genes that regulate neurodevelopment can lead to cortical malformations, resulting in malfunction during postnatal life. The NF-κB pathway has a key role during neurodevelopment by regulating the maintenance of the neural progenitor cell pool and inhibiting neuronal differentiation. In this study, we evaluated whether mice lacking the NF-κB p50 subunit (KO) present alterations in cortical structure and associated behavioral impairment. We found that, compared with wild type (WT), KO mice at postnatal day 2 present an increase in radial glial cells, an increase in Reelin protein expression levels, in addition to an increase of specific layer thickness. Moreover, adult KO mice display abnormal columnar organization in the somatosensory cortex, a specific decrease in somatostatin- and parvalbumin-expressing interneurons, altered neurite orientation, and a decrease in Synapsin I protein levels. Concerning behavior, KO mice, in addition to an increase in locomotor and exploratory activity, display impairment in social behaviors, with a reduction in social interaction. Finally, we found that risperidone treatment decreased hyperactivity of KO mice, but had no effect on defective social interaction. Altogether, these data add complexity to a growing body of data, suggesting a link between dysregulation of the NF-κB pathway and neurodevelopmental disorders pathogenesis. PMID:26946128

  3. Characterization of pore structure and hydraulic property alteration in pressurized unsaturated flow tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The pressurized unsaturated flow (PUF) test is a new experimental method for the evaluation of the long-term corrosion behavior of waste forms and other engineered barrier materials. Essentially, the technique provides a means to flow water through a porous bed of test material or materials at elevated temperature and under hydraulically unsaturated conditions. Bulk volumetric content, effluent pH and electrical conductivity are monitored in real time using a computer control and data acquisition system. In previous papers, the authors have reported on the changes in bulk water content, effluent chemistry, and glass corrosion rates that result from the formation of alteration products during these tests. These measurements are now supplemented through the use of the ultracentrifugation apparatus (UFA) for hydraulic property measurements and high-resolution, x-ray microtomography (XMT) to provide 3-D spatial and temporal imaging of water distribution and pore structure alteration during these tests. Quantitative changes in the water retention characteristic were correlated with the onset of zeolite formation in the tests. Extensive alteration of the glass resulted in cementation of the glass grains near the bottom of the column, which was observed in situ using the XMT

  4. Demonstration of structural alterations in experimental corneal infectious model using multiphoton microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lo, Wen; Tan, Hsin-Yuan; Chang, Yuh-Ling; Sun, Yen; Lin, Sung-Jan; Jee, Shiou-Hwa; Dong, Chen-Yuan

    2007-02-01

    The aim of this study is to assess the application of multiphoton autofluorescence and second harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy for investigating the structural alterations and the pattern of microbial spreading during corneal infectious process in an in vitro organ culture model. The autofluorescence spectrum derived from pathogens allows us to monitoring the pattern of microbial spreading within corneal lamellae. In addition, the destruction and regeneration of second harmonic generating collagen during infectious process can also be monitored in a non-invasive fashion. Therefore we propose that multiphoton microscopy may potentially be applied as an effective monitoring tool for corneal infection studies.

  5. Detection of radionuclide contamination using fluor-impregnated polymer membranes of double-layered structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    New solid scintillation proximity membranes, which can be used as a medium for the wipe test in the absence of scintillation cocktail, are developed. The membranes are prepared by impregnating in a solid matrix a fluor, which can illuminate by absorbing energy and emitting a portion of energy at the ultraviolet, visible or infrared region. Thus the activity of radioisotopes adsorbed on a membrane matrix can be detected without dissolving the collected isotopes in the scintillation cocktail, with the added benefit of reducing radioactive waste. These specific membranes are made of poly-sulfone (PSF) as a polymer matrix and cerium activated yttrium silicate (CAYS) as an inorganic fluor. The membranes. shape consists of two distinguished structures. The bottom one is a dense polymer layer for supporting the active top layer that holds fluor particles dispersed in a polymer matrix. The preparation of membranes is progressed by two separate casting and coagulation processes. To make the supporting, pure polymer layer, a casting solution consisting of poly-sulfone (25 g) and methylene chloride (MC, 80 g) is coated upon a glass substrate using a casting knife, being solidified by vacuum evaporation. In the preparation of an active layer, CAYS-dispersed polymer solutions with dimethylformamide (DMF) or MC as solvent are cast over the solidified film and coagulated either by evaporating or by exchanging the solvent in the solution with non-solvent water or alcohol in a coagulation bath. The prepared membranes had two distinguished, but tightly attached, double layers. The active layer, detecting radioactivity on the contaminated sites, can be either porous or dense, depending on the coagulation process of a casting solution. The porous membrane, prepared by water precipitation of the DMF solution, is superior to the dense one on the radionuclide pick-up efficiency. The counting efficiency, however, does not improve as much as the pick-up efficiency because the porous

  6. The Flavivirus Precursor Membrane-Envelope Protein Complex: Structure and Maturation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Long; Lok, Shee-Mei; Yu, I-Mei; Zhang, Ying; Kuhn, Richard J.; Chen, Jue; Rossmann, Michael G. (Purdue)

    2008-09-17

    Many viruses go through a maturation step in the final stages of assembly before being transmitted to another host. The maturation process of flaviviruses is directed by the proteolytic cleavage of the precursor membrane protein (prM), turning inert virus into infectious particles. We have determined the 2.2 angstrom resolution crystal structure of a recombinant protein in which the dengue virus prM is linked to the envelope glycoprotein E. The structure represents the prM-E heterodimer and fits well into the cryo-electron microscopy density of immature virus at neutral pH. The pr peptide {beta}-barrel structure covers the fusion loop in E, preventing fusion with host cell membranes. The structure provides a basis for identifying the stages of its pH-directed conformational metamorphosis during maturation, ending with release of pr when budding from the host.

  7. Structure determination of the membrane protein-pigment complexes by nuclear magnetic resonance and neutron scattering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    NMR and neutron scattering were used for the study of three-dimensional structure in a liquid state of a membrane protein-pigment complex (LH1) required for light collection in photosynthesis living things. Three-dimensional structures of α and β polypeptide were determined with a specimen homogeneously labeled with 15N and 13C by multi-dimensional NMR. Here, α and β polypeptides constituted a B820 complex which was the structural unit of LH1. A stable helix structure passing between membranes was evidenced in both polypeptides. Neutron small angle scattering revealed that the B820 complex was composed of one each α and β peptide, and two molecules of pigment Bchl a, and had a gyration radius of about 11A. It is proved that pigment molecules were an essential element for the formation of the stable B820 complex. (Y. Kazumata)

  8. Rapid thermal tuning of chromophore structure in membrane protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jianping; El-Sayed, Mostafa A

    2009-04-01

    We show that the configuration and the optical property of the retinal chromophore in bacteriorhodopsin (bR) can be tuned dynamically from the all-trans configuration to the 13-cis by using a nanosecond laser-induced temperature-jump. The rapid bleach in the visible absorption optical density of retinal has an apparent formation time of ca. 170 ns, whereas the relaxation process finishes within tens of ms. The dynamical transition of retinal from the all-trans to 13-cis species is believed to occur as a result of rapid protein conformational change especially in the vicinity of retinal binding site. Our study reveals the intrinsic dynamical aspect of the retinal chromophore with respect to the protein structure. PMID:19275202

  9. Structural brain alterations in patients with lumbar disc herniation: a preliminary study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Luchtmann

    Full Text Available Chronic pain is one of the most common health complaints in industrial nations. For example, chronic low back pain (cLBP disables millions of people across the world and generates a tremendous economic burden. While previous studies provided evidence of widespread functional as well as structural brain alterations in chronic pain, little is known about cortical changes in patients suffering from lumbar disc herniation. We investigated morphometric alterations of the gray and white matter of the brain in patients suffering from LDH. The volumes of the gray and white matter of 12 LDH patients were determined in a prospective study and compared to the volumes of healthy controls to distinguish local differences. High-resolution MRI brain images of all participants were performed using a 3 Tesla MRI scanner. Voxel-based morphometry was used to investigate local differences in gray and white matter volume between patients suffering from LDH and healthy controls. LDH patients showed significantly reduced gray matter volume in the right anterolateral prefrontal cortex, the right temporal lobe, the left premotor cortex, the right caudate nucleus, and the right cerebellum as compared to healthy controls. Increased gray matter volume, however, was found in the right dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, the left precuneal cortex, the left fusiform gyrus, and the right brainstem. Additionally, small subcortical decreases of the white matter were found adjacent to the left prefrontal cortex, the right premotor cortex and in the anterior limb of the left internal capsule. We conclude that the lumbar disk herniation can lead to specific local alterations of the gray and white matter in the human brain. The investigation of LDH-induced brain alterations could provide further insight into the underlying nature of the chronification processes and could possibly identify prognostic factors that may improve the conservative as well as the operative treatment of the

  10. Solution structure of a soluble fragment derived from a membrane protein by shotgun proteolysis

    OpenAIRE

    Allen, Mark D.; Christie, Mary; Jones, Peter; Porebski, Benjamin T.; Roome, Brendan; Freund, Stefan M V; Buckle, Ashley M.; Bycroft, Mark; Christ, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    We have previously reported a phage display method for the identification of protein domains on a genome-wide scale (shotgun proteolysis). Here we present the solution structure of a fragment of the Escherichia coli membrane protein yrfF, as identified by shotgun proteolysis, and determined by NMR spectroscopy. Despite the absence of computational predictions, the fragment formed a well-defined beta-barrel structure, distantly falling within the OB-fold classification. Our results highlight t...

  11. Membrane potential and input resistance are ambiguous measures of sealing of transected cable-like structures.

    OpenAIRE

    Krause, T L; Magarshak, Y; Fishman, H M; Bittner, G.D.

    1995-01-01

    For many years, membrane potential (Vm) and input resistance have been used to characterize the electrophysiological nature of a seal (barrier) that forms at the cut end of a transected axon or other extended cytoplasmic structure. Data from a mathematical and an analog model of a transected axon and other theoretical considerations show that steady-state values of Vm and input resistance measured from any cable-like structure provide a very equivocal assessment of the electrical barrier (sea...

  12. Micro-scale NMR Experiments for Monitoring the Optimization of Membrane Protein Solutions for Structural Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Horst, Reto; Wüthrich, Kurt

    2015-01-01

    Reconstitution of integral membrane proteins (IMP) in aqueous solutions of detergent micelles has been extensively used in structural biology, using either X-ray crystallography or NMR in solution. Further progress could be achieved by establishing a rational basis for the selection of detergent and buffer conditions, since the stringent bottleneck that slows down the structural biology of IMPs is the preparation of diffracting crystals or concentrated solutions of stable isotope labeled IMPs...

  13. Docosahexaenoic acid reverses cyclosporin A-induced changes in membrane structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thakkar, R R; Wang, O L; Zerouga, M; Stillwell, W; Haq, A; Kissling, R; Pierce, W M; Smith, N B; Miller, F N; Ehringer, W D

    2000-04-01

    The use of a fish oil vehicle for cyclosporin A (CsA) can decrease the toxic effects of CsA but the mechanism is unclear. Here we examine the mechanism by which docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a fish oil-derived polyunsaturated fatty acid, can alter the toxic effects of CsA on mouse organ function, endothelial macromolecular permeability, and membrane bilayer function. Mice given CsA and fish oil showed increased liver toxicity, kidney toxicity, incorporation of DHA, and evidence of oxidized fatty acids compared to control animals. We hypothesized that the toxic effects of CsA were primarily a result of membrane perturbation, which could be decreased if DHA were not oxidized. The presence of CsA (10 mol%) alone increased dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine membrane permeability by seven fold over control (no CsA, no DHA). However, if non-oxidized DHA (15 mol%) and CsA were added to the membrane, the permeability returned to control levels. Interestingly, if the DHA was oxidized, the antagonistic effect of DHA on CsA was completely lost. While CsA alone increased endothelial permeability to albumin, the combination of non-oxidized DHA and CsA had no effect on endothelial macromolecular permeability. However the combination of oxidized DHA and CsA was no different than the effects of CsA only. CsA increased the fluorescence anisotropy of DPH in the liquid crystalline state of DPPC, while DHA decreased fluorescence anisotropy. However the combination of CsA and DHA was no different than DHA alone. We conclude that non-oxidized DHA can reverse the membrane perturbing effects of CsA, and the increases in endothelial macromolecular permeability, which may explain how fish oil is capable of decreasing the toxicity of CsA. PMID:10742598

  14. Organization into Higher Ordered Ring Structures Counteracts Membrane Binding of IM30, a Protein Associated with Inner Membranes in Chloroplasts and Cyanobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heidrich, Jennifer; Wulf, Verena; Hennig, Raoul; Saur, Michael; Markl, Jürgen; Sönnichsen, Carsten; Schneider, Dirk

    2016-07-15

    The IM30 (inner membrane-associated protein of 30 kDa), also known as the Vipp1 (vesicle-inducing protein in plastids 1), has a crucial role in thylakoid membrane biogenesis and maintenance. Recent results suggest that the protein binds peripherally to membranes containing negatively charged lipids. However, although IM30 monomers interact and assemble into large oligomeric ring complexes with different numbers of monomers, it is still an open question whether ring formation is crucial for membrane interaction. Here we show that binding of IM30 rings to negatively charged phosphatidylglycerol membrane surfaces results in a higher ordered membrane state, both in the head group and in the inner core region of the lipid bilayer. Furthermore, by using gold nanorods covered with phosphatidylglycerol layers and single particle spectroscopy, we show that not only IM30 rings but also lower oligomeric IM30 structures interact with membranes, although with higher affinity. Thus, ring formation is not crucial for, and even counteracts, membrane interaction of IM30. PMID:27226585

  15. Specific glycosylation of membrane proteins in epithelial ovarian cancer cell lines: glycan structures reflect gene expression and DNA methylation status.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anugraham, Merrina; Jacob, Francis; Nixdorf, Sheri; Everest-Dass, Arun Vijay; Heinzelmann-Schwarz, Viola; Packer, Nicolle H

    2014-09-01

    Epithelial ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cause of cancer in women worldwide bearing the highest mortality rate among all gynecological cancers. Cell membrane glycans mediate various cellular processes such as cell signaling and become altered during carcinogenesis. The extent to which glycosylation changes are influenced by aberrant regulation of gene expression is nearly unknown for ovarian cancer and remains crucial in understanding the development and progression of this disease. To address this effect, we analyzed the membrane glycosylation of non-cancerous ovarian surface epithelial (HOSE 6.3 and HOSE 17.1) and serous ovarian cancer cell lines (SKOV 3, IGROV1, A2780, and OVCAR 3), the most common histotype among epithelial ovarian cancers. N-glycans were released from membrane glycoproteins by PNGase F and analyzed using nano-liquid chromatography on porous graphitized carbon and negative-ion electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). Glycan structures were characterized based on their molecular masses and tandem MS fragmentation patterns. We identified characteristic glycan features that were unique to the ovarian cancer membrane proteins, namely the "bisecting N-acetyl-glucosamine" type N-glycans, increased levels of α 2-6 sialylated N-glycans and "N,N'-diacetyl-lactosamine" type N-glycans. These N-glycan changes were verified by examining gene transcript levels of the enzymes specific for their synthesis (MGAT3, ST6GAL1, and B4GALNT3) using qRT-PCR. We further evaluated the potential epigenetic influence on MGAT3 expression by treating the cell lines with 5-azacytidine, a DNA methylation inhibitor. For the first time, we provide evidence that MGAT3 expression may be epigenetically regulated by DNA hypomethylation, leading to the synthesis of the unique "bisecting GlcNAc" type N-glycans on the membrane proteins of ovarian cancer cells. Linking the observation of specific N-glycan substructures and their complex association with epigenetic

  16. Physicochemical status of plasma membranes of adipose tissue and liver of rats at remote times following 1 Gy gamma, irradiation structural changes in membranes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The structural status of plasma membranes of adipose tissue and liver of rats was investigated at remote times (from 15 to 380 days) after single 1 Gy gamma-irradiation. The structural status was estimated by pyrene excimerisation parameters and also by both induction resonance energy transfer method and membrane tryptophan fluorescence spectral characteristics. On days 50-100 following irradiation the microviscosity of a lipid phase of membranes increased and the mode of lipid/protein interactions changed, whereas at later times the indices under study did not vary from the controls. Comparison of the data obtained with the former results on lipid content changes indicates that the physicochemical status of plasma membranes in rat adipose tissue and liver is modified at remote times following 1 Gy gamma-irradiation

  17. Modification of the poly(ethylene) terephthalate track membrane structure and surface in the plasma of non-polymerized gases

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An investigation of the properties of poly(ethylene) terephthalate track membranes (PETTMs) treated with a plasma RF-discharge in non-polymerized gases has been performed. The influence of the plasma treatment conditions on the basic properties of the membranes has been studied. It was arranged that the effect of non-polymerized gases plasma on the PETTMs results to etching a membrane's surface layer. The membranes' pore size and the form in this case change. It is shown that it is possible to change the structure of track membranes directly by gas discharge etching

  18. Study of structural model of biological membranes by synchrotron radiation

    CERN Document Server

    Cavalcanti, L P

    2001-01-01

    The objective of this work has been to study, from the structural point of view, the process of incorporation of various types of hydrophobic compounds into the lamellar phase of liposomes and multilayers of the zwitterionic phospholipid DPPC. X-ray diffraction and scattering techniques using synchrotron radiation, have been used to monitor changes of several bilayer systems. Thermotropic phase transitions as well as the order of the lamellar packing were studied in situ experiments. The behavior of the L beta' and L alpha phases was followed as a function of the water content in dispersions of DPPC multi lamellar vesicles with the addition of the alkaloid Ellipticine in several concentrations. The results showed a decrease in the temperature of the pre-transition as well as that of the main transition (P beta' ->L alpha). The decrease of the lamellar spacing as a function of temperature in the liquid crystalline phase leads to the description of the thermal compression coefficient in the L alpha phase. It wa...

  19. Structural insight into the biogenesis of β-barrel membrane proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noinaj, Nicholas; Kuszak, Adam J; Gumbart, James C; Lukacik, Petra; Chang, Hoshing; Easley, Nicole C; Lithgow, Trevor; Buchanan, Susan K

    2013-09-19

    β-barrel membrane proteins are essential for nutrient import, signalling, motility and survival. In Gram-negative bacteria, the β-barrel assembly machinery (BAM) complex is responsible for the biogenesis of β-barrel membrane proteins, with homologous complexes found in mitochondria and chloroplasts. Here we describe the structure of BamA, the central and essential component of the BAM complex, from two species of bacteria: Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Haemophilus ducreyi. BamA consists of a large periplasmic domain attached to a 16-strand transmembrane β-barrel domain. Three structural features shed light on the mechanism by which BamA catalyses β-barrel assembly. First, the interior cavity is accessible in one BamA structure and conformationally closed in the other. Second, an exterior rim of the β-barrel has a distinctly narrowed hydrophobic surface, locally destabilizing the outer membrane. And third, the β-barrel can undergo lateral opening, suggesting a route from the interior cavity in BamA into the outer membrane. PMID:23995689

  20. An evaluation of detergents for NMR structural studies of membrane proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Structural information on membrane proteins lags far behind that on soluble proteins, in large part due to difficulties producing homogeneous, stable, structurally relevant samples in a membrane-like environment. In this study 25 membrane mimetics were screened using 2D 1H-15N heteronuclear single quantum correlation NMR experiments to establish sample homogeneity and predict fitness for structure determination. A single detergent, 1-palmitoyl-2-hydroxy-sn-glycero-3-[phospho-RAC-(1-glycerol)] (LPPG), yielded high quality NMR spectra with sample lifetimes greater than one month for the five proteins tested - R. sphaeroides LH1 α and β subunits, E. coli and B. pseudofirmus OF4 ATP synthase c subunits, and S. aureus small multidrug resistance transporter - with 1, 2, or 4 membrane spanning α-helices, respectively. Site-specific spin labeling established interhelical distances in the drug transporter and genetically fused dimers of c subunits in LPPG consistent with in vivo distances. Optical spectroscopy showed that LH1 β subunits form native-like complexes with bacteriochlorphyll a in LPPG. All the protein/micelle complexes were estimated to exceed 100 kDaltons by translational diffusion measurements. However, analysis of 15N transverse, longitudinal and 15N{1H} nuclear Overhauser effect relaxation measurements yielded overall rotational correlation times of 8 to 12 nsec, similar to a 15-20 kDalton protein tumbling isotropically in solution, and consistent with the high quality NMR data observed

  1. In silico local structure approach: a case study on outer membrane proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Juliette; de Brevern, Alexandre G; Camproux, Anne-Claude

    2008-04-01

    The detection of Outer Membrane Proteins (OMP) in whole genomes is an actual question, their sequence characteristics have thus been intensively studied. This class of protein displays a common beta-barrel architecture, formed by adjacent antiparallel strands. However, due to the lack of available structures, few structural studies have been made on this class of proteins. Here we propose a novel OMP local structure investigation, based on a structural alphabet approach, i.e., the decomposition of 3D structures using a library of four-residue protein fragments. The optimal decomposition of structures using hidden Markov model results in a specific structural alphabet of 20 fragments, six of them dedicated to the decomposition of beta-strands. This optimal alphabet, called SA20-OMP, is analyzed in details, in terms of local structures and transitions between fragments. It highlights a particular and strong organization of beta-strands as series of regular canonical structural fragments. The comparison with alphabets learned on globular structures indicates that the internal organization of OMP structures is more constrained than in globular structures. The analysis of OMP structures using SA20-OMP reveals some recurrent structural patterns. The preferred location of fragments in the distinct regions of the membrane is investigated. The study of pairwise specificity of fragments reveals that some contacts between structural fragments in beta-sheets are clearly favored whereas others are avoided. This contact specificity is stronger in OMP than in globular structures. Moreover, SA20-OMP also captured sequential information. This can be integrated in a scoring function for structural model ranking with very promising results. PMID:17932925

  2. Design Optimization of Deflection Caused After Release of Multilayer Structural Membrane of Symmetric Toggle Switch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Maninder

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the optimization in deflection caused by the inbuilt stress generated in mechanical or movable membrane of Symmetric Toggle RF MEMS Switch (STS. The movable membrane of STS was initially fabricated with two different materials, i.e. Chrome and Gold. The simulated deflection at 70 °C was 11.9 µm, and experimental deflection was 11-12 µm. We present a study of inbuilt deflection reduction in multimetal movable layers without change in actuation voltage of the switch. The design study was initially carried out on cantilevers and then on structural membrane of STS. STS with proposed multilayer of Cr-Au-Au-Ti-Au has a simulated deflection of 0.56 µm at 70 °C.

  3. SMP-domain proteins at membrane contact sites: Structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinisch, Karin M; De Camilli, Pietro

    2016-08-01

    SMP-domains are found in proteins that localize to membrane contact sites. Elucidation of the properties of these proteins gives clues as to the molecular bases underlying processes that occur at such sites. Described here are recent discoveries concerning the structure, function, and regulation of the Extended-Synaptotagmin proteins and ERMES complex subunits, SMP-domain proteins at endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-plasma membrane and ER-mitochondrial contacts, respectively. They act as tethers contributing to the architecture of these sites and as lipid transporters that convey glycerolipids between apposed membranes. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: The cellular lipid landscape edited by Tim P. Levine and Anant K. Menon. PMID:26686281

  4. Research on Several Prediction Methods of Membrane Protein Structure and Topology

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    Since present prediction methods of membrane protein structureand topology made use of mixed data sets both from experiments and prediction as training and test sets, the reliability and accuracy of their prediction is still under debate. To benchmark the performance of these methods, this commentary uses a test set of membrane proteins created by European Bioinformatics Institute with either available 3-D structure or experimentally confirmed transmembrane regions. Then the prediction results are compared and the problems existing in these methods and important features for successful prediction are pointed out, which may help users to choose a more reliable prediction from different results. Based upon recent advances in membrane protein, possible means to improve topology prediction accuracy are discussed.

  5. Chronic ethanol intake leads to structural and molecular alterations in the rat endometrium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, Marcelo; Milton, Flora A; Pinheiro, Patricia Fernanda F; Almeida-Francia, Camila C D; Cagnon-Quitete, Valeria H A; Tirapelli, Luiz F; Padovani, Carlos Roberto; Chuffa, Luiz Gustavo A; Martinez, Francisco Eduardo

    2016-05-01

    We described the effects of low- and high-dose ethanol intake on the structure and apoptosis signaling of the uterine endometrium of UChA and UChB rats (animals with voluntary ethanol consumption). Thirty adult female rats, 90 days old, were divided into three groups (n = 10/group): UChA rats fed with 10% (v/v) ethanol ad libitum (free choice for water or ethanol) drinking water or ethanol) drinking from 2 to 5 g/kg/day; control rats without ethanol (only water). After 120 days of treatment, rats displaying estrus were euthanized. Uterine epithelial cells of the UCh rats showed dilated cisterns of the rough endoplasmic reticulum, presence of lipid droplets, altered nuclear chromatin, and disrupted mitochondria. The UCh rats exhibited intense atrophied epithelial cells with smaller areas and perimeters of cytoplasm and nuclei. The endometrium of UChA rats showed higher levels of caspase-3 while Xiap and Bcl2 varied from moderate to weak. Both UChA and UChB rats exhibited a stronger immunoreaction to Ki-67 and IGFR-1 on epithelial and stromal cells. Chronic ethanol intake leads to structural and molecular alterations in the uterine endometrium of UCh rats, regardless of low- or high-dose consumption, promoting reproductive disorders. PMID:27139238

  6. Myocardial structural alteration and systolic dysfunction in preclinical hypertrophic cardiomyopathy mutation carriers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai Hang Yiu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: To evaluate the presence of myocardial structural alterations and subtle myocardial dysfunction during familial screening in asymptomatic mutation carriers without hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM phenotype. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Sixteen HCM families with pathogenic mutation were studied and 46 patients with phenotype expression (Mut+/Phen+ and 47 patients without phenotype expression (Mut+/Phen- were observed. Twenty-five control subjects, matched with the Mut+/Phen- group, were recruited for comparison. Echocardiography was performed to evaluate conventional parameters, myocardial structural alteration by calibrated integrated backscatter (cIBS and global and segmental longitudinal strain by speckle tracking analysis. All 3 groups had similar left ventricular dimensions and ejection fraction. Basal anteroseptal cIBS was the highest in Mut+/Phen+ patients (-14.0±4.6 dB, p-19.0 dB basal anteroseptal cIBS or >-18.0% basal anteroseptal longitudinal strain had a sensitivity of 98% and a specificity of 72% in differentiating Mut+/Phen- group from controls. CONCLUSION: The use of cIBS and segmental longitudinal strain can differentiate HCM Mut+/Phen- patients from controls with important clinical implications for the family screening and follow-up of these patients.

  7. Brain structural and functional alterations in patients with unilateral hearing loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Ming; Chen, Hua-Jun; Liu, Bin; Huang, Zhi-Chun; Feng, Yuan; Li, Jing; Chen, Jing-Ya; Zhang, Ling-Ling; Ji, Hui; Feng, Xu; Zhu, Xin; Teng, Gao-Jun

    2014-10-01

    Alterations of brain structure and functional connectivity have been described in patients with hearing impairments due to distinct pathogenesis; however, the influence of unilateral hearing loss (UHL) on brain morphology and regional brain activity is still not completely understood. In this study, we aim to investigate regional brain structural and functional alterations in patients with UHL. T1-weighted volumetric images and task-free fMRIs were acquired from 14 patients with right-sided UHL (pure tone average ≥ 40 dB HL) and 19 healthy controls. Hearing ability was assessed by pure tone audiometry. Voxel-based morphometry (VBM) was performed to detect brain regions with changed gray matter volume or white matter volume in UHL. The amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) was calculated to analyze brain activity at the baseline and was compared between two groups. Compared with controls, UHL patients showed decreased gray matter volume in bilateral posterior cingulate gyrus and precuneus, left superior/middle/inferior temporal gyrus, and right parahippocampal gyrus and lingual gyrus. Meanwhile, patients showed significantly decreased ALFF in bilateral precuneus, left inferior parietal lobule, and right inferior frontal gyrus and insula and increased ALFF in right inferior and middle temporal gyrus. These findings suggest that chronic UHL could induce brain morphological changes and is associated with aberrant baseline brain activity. PMID:25093284

  8. 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.

  9. Altering strength and plastic deformation behavior via alloying and laminated structure in nanocrystalline metals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gu, C. [State Key Laboratory for Mechanical Behavior of Material, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an 710049 (China); Wang, F., E-mail: wangfei@mail.xjtu.edu.cn [State Key Laboratory for Strength and Vibration of Mechanical Structures, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an 710049 (China); Huang, P., E-mail: huangping@mail.xjtu.edu.cn [State Key Laboratory for Mechanical Behavior of Material, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an 710049 (China); Lu, T.J. [State Key Laboratory for Strength and Vibration of Mechanical Structures, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an 710049 (China); MOE Key Laboratory for Multifunctional Materials and Structures, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an 710049 (China); Xu, K.W. [State Key Laboratory for Mechanical Behavior of Material, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an 710049 (China)

    2015-07-29

    Nanoindentation and electron microscope techniques have been performed on sputtering deposited monolayered nanocrystalline CuNb and multilayered CuNb/Cu thin films. Microstructural features, hardness and surface morphologies of residual indentation have been evaluated to identify the effects of alloying and laminated structure on strength and plastic deformation behavior of nanocrystalline metals. By altering the content of Nb in CuNb alloy and adding crystalline Cu layers into CuNb alloy, the volume fraction of amorphous phase in CuNb alloy and interface structures changed dramatically, resulting in various trends that are related to hardness, indentation induced pileup and shear banding deformation. Based on the experimental results, the dominant deformation mechanisms of the CuNb and CuNb/Cu thin films with various Nb contents were proposed and extended to be discussed.

  10. [Night sleep structural alteration as a function of individual strategy of adapting to 520-isolation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zavalko, I M; Boritko, Ya S; Kovrov, G V; Vinokhodova, A G; Chekalina, A I; Smoleevsky, A E

    2014-01-01

    Purpose of the work was to establish a relationship between trends in sleep alteration and individual adaptation to the stress-factors in the 520-day isolation study. Psychological evaluations using a battery of motivation tests and L. Sobchik's modification of the Luscher personality test, and Mirror coordinograph enabled to differentiate groups reacting to the stress on the pattern of "control" (G-1) or "search" (G-2) manifested in individual styles of behavior and operator's activity. The 2 groups showed different dynamics of the night sleep structure. Difficulties with falling asleep in G-1 arose on the eve of "landing onto Mars" and end of the experiment, whereas in G-2 they were evident prior to the end only. Besides, the micro- and segmental sleep structures were more stable in G-1 suggesting the integrity of somnogenic mechanisms despite difficult sleep initiation. PMID:25033611

  11. Altering strength and plastic deformation behavior via alloying and laminated structure in nanocrystalline metals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nanoindentation and electron microscope techniques have been performed on sputtering deposited monolayered nanocrystalline CuNb and multilayered CuNb/Cu thin films. Microstructural features, hardness and surface morphologies of residual indentation have been evaluated to identify the effects of alloying and laminated structure on strength and plastic deformation behavior of nanocrystalline metals. By altering the content of Nb in CuNb alloy and adding crystalline Cu layers into CuNb alloy, the volume fraction of amorphous phase in CuNb alloy and interface structures changed dramatically, resulting in various trends that are related to hardness, indentation induced pileup and shear banding deformation. Based on the experimental results, the dominant deformation mechanisms of the CuNb and CuNb/Cu thin films with various Nb contents were proposed and extended to be discussed

  12. Single-cell evaluation of red blood cell bio-mechanical and nano-structural alterations upon chemically induced oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Ameya; Chu, Trang T T; Dao, Ming; Chandramohanadas, Rajesh

    2015-01-01

    Erythroid cells, specifically red blood cells (RBCs), are constantly exposed to highly reactive radicals during cellular gaseous exchange. Such exposure often exceeds the cells' innate anti-oxidant defense systems, leading to progressive damage and eventual senescence. One of the contributing factors to this process are alterations to hemoglobin conformation and globin binding to red cell cytoskeleton. However, in addition to the aforementioned changes, it is possible that oxidative damage induces critical changes to the erythrocyte cytoskeleton and corresponding bio-mechanical and nano-structural properties of the red cell membrane. To quantitatively characterize how oxidative damage accounts for such changes, we employed single-cell manipulation techniques such as micropipette aspiration and atomic force microscopy (AFM) on RBCs. These investigations demonstrated visible morphological changes upon chemically induced oxidative damage (using hydrogen peroxide, diamide, primaquine bisphosphate and cumene hydroperoxide). Our results provide previously unavailable observations on remarkable changes in red cell cytoskeletal architecture and membrane stiffness due to oxidative damage. Furthermore, we also demonstrate that a pathogen that infects human blood cells, Plasmodium falciparum was unable to penetrate through the oxidant-exposed RBCs that have damaged cytoskeleton and stiffer membranes. This indicates the importance of bio-physical factors pertinent to aged RBCs and it's relevance to malaria infectivity. PMID:25950144

  13. Canopy structural alterations to nitrogen functions of the soil microbial community in a Quercus virginiana forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, L. D.; Van Stan, J. T., II; Rosier, C. L.; Gay, T. E.; Wu, T.

    2014-12-01

    Forest canopy structure controls the timing, amount and chemical character of precipitation supply to soils through interception and drainage along crown surfaces. Yet, few studies have examined forest canopy structural connections to soil microbial communities (SMCs), and none have measured how this affects SMC N functions. The maritime Quercus virginiana Mill. (southern live oak) forests of St Catherine's Island, GA, USA provide an ideal opportunity to examine canopy structural alterations to SMCs and their functioning, as their throughfall varies substantially across space due to dense Tillandsia usneoides L. (spanish moss) mats bestrewn throughout. To examine the impact of throughfall variability on SMC N functions, we examined points along the canopy coverage continuum: large canopy gaps (0%), bare canopy (50-60%), and canopy of heavy T. usneoides coverage (>=85%). Five sites beneath each of the canopy cover types were monitored for throughfall water/ions and soil leachates chemistry for one storm each month over the growing period (7 months, Mar-2014 to Sep-2014) to compare with soil chemistry and SMC communities sampled every two months throughout that same period (Mar, May, Jul, Sep). DGGE and QPCR analysis of the N functioning genes (NFGs) to characterize the ammonia oxidizing bacterial (AOB-amoA), archaea (AOA-amoA), and ammonification (chiA) communities were used to determine the nitrification and decomposition potential of these microbial communities. PRS™-probes (Western Ag Innovations Inc., Saskatoon, Canada) were then used to determine the availability of NO3-N and NH4+N in the soils over a 6-week period to evaluate whether the differing NFG abundance and community structures resulted in altered N cycling.

  14. Field-based experimental acidification alters fouling community structure and reduces diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Norah E M; Therriault, Thomas W; Harley, Christopher D G

    2016-09-01

    Increasing levels of CO2 in the atmosphere are affecting ocean chemistry, leading to increased acidification (i.e. decreased pH) and reductions in calcium carbonate saturation state. Many species are likely to respond to acidification, but the direction and magnitude of these responses will be based on interspecific and ontogenetic variation in physiology and the relative importance of calcification. Differential responses to ocean acidification (OA) among species will likely result in important changes in community structure and diversity. To characterize the potential impacts of OA on community composition and structure, we examined the response of a marine fouling community to experimental CO2 enrichment in field-deployed flow-through mesocosm systems. Acidification significantly altered the community structure by altering the relative abundance of species and reduced community variability, resulting in more homogenous biofouling communities from one experimental tile to the next both among and within the acidified mesocosms. Mussel (Mytilus trossulus) recruitment was reduced by over 30% in the elevated CO2 treatment compared to the ambient treatment by the end of the experiment. Strong differences in mussel cover (up to 40% lower in acidified conditions) developed over the second half of the 10-week experiment. Acidification did not appear to affect the mussel growth, as average mussel sizes were similar between treatments at the end of the experiment. Hydroid (Obelia dichotoma) cover was significantly reduced in the elevated CO2 treatment after 8 weeks. Conversely, the percentage cover of bryozoan colonies (Mebranipora membranacea) was higher under acidified conditions with differences becoming apparent after 6 weeks. Neither recruitment nor final size of barnacles (Balanus crenatus) was affected by acidification. By the end of the experiment, diversity was 41% lower in the acidified treatment relative to ambient conditions. Overall, our findings support the

  15. Structure/property relationships in polymer membranes for water purification and energy applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geise, Geoffrey

    Providing sustainable supplies of purified water and energy is a critical global challenge for the future, and polymer membranes will play a key role in addressing these clear and pressing global needs for water and energy. Polymer membrane-based processes dominate the desalination market, and polymer membranes are crucial components in several rapidly developing power generation and storage applications that rely on membranes to control rates of water and/or ion transport. Much remains unknown about the influence of polymer structure on intrinsic water and ion transport properties, and these relationships must be developed to design next generation polymer membrane materials. For desalination applications, polymers with simultaneously high water permeability and low salt permeability are desirable in order to prepare selective membranes that can efficiently desalinate water, and a tradeoff relationship between water/salt selectivity and water permeability suggests that attempts to prepare such materials should rely on approaches that do more than simply vary polymer free volume. One strategy is to functionalize hydrocarbon polymers with fixed charge groups that can ionize upon exposure to water, and the presence of charged groups in the polymer influences transport properties. Additionally, in many emerging energy applications, charged polymers are exposed to ions that are very different from sodium and chloride. Specific ion effects have been observed in charged polymers, and these effects must be understood to prepare charged polymers that will enable emerging energy technologies. This presentation discusses research aimed at further understanding fundamental structure/property relationships that govern water and ion transport in charged polymer films considered for desalination and electric potential field-driven applications that can help address global needs for clean water and energy.

  16. Plasma lipid pattern and red cell membrane structure in β-thalassemia patients in Jakarta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seruni K.U. Freisleben

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Over the last 10 years, we have investigated thalassemia patients in Jakarta to obtain a comprehensive picture of iron overload, oxidative stress, and cell damage.Methods: In blood samples from 15 transfusion-dependent patients (group T, 5 non-transfused patients (group N and 10 controls (group C, plasma lipids and lipoproteins, lipid-soluble vitamin E, malondialdehyde (MDA and thiol status were measured. Isolated eryhtrocyte membranes were investigated with electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR spectroscopy using doxyl-stearic acid and maleimido-proxyl spin lables. Data were analyzed statistically with ANOVA.Results: Plasma triglycerides were higher and cholesterol levels were lower in thalassemic patients compared to controls. Vitamin E, group C: 21.8 vs T: 6.2 μmol/L and reactive thiols (C: 144 vs. T: 61 μmol/L were considerably lower in transfused patients, who exert clear signs of oxidative stress (MDA, C: 1.96 vs T: 9.2 μmol/L and of tissue cell damage, i.e., high transaminases plasma levels. Non-transfused thalassemia patients have slight signs of oxidative stress, but no significant indication of cell damage. Erythrocyte membrane parameters from EPR spectroscopy differ considerably between all groups. In transfusion-dependent patients the structure of the erythrocyte membrane and the gradients of polarity and fluidity are destroyed in lipid domains; binding capacity of protein thiols in the membrane is lower and immobilized.Conclusion: In tranfusion-dependent thalassemic patients, plasma lipid pattern and oxidative stress are associated with structural damage of isolated erythrocyte membranes as measured by EPR spectroscopy with lipid and proteinthiol spin labels. (Med J Indones 2011; 20:178-84Keywords: electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy, erythrocyte membrane, lipoproteins, oxidative stress, thalassemia, plasma lipids.

  17. Stimulation of Slack K(+) Channels Alters Mass at the Plasma Membrane by Triggering Dissociation of a Phosphatase-Regulatory Complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleming, Matthew R; Brown, Maile R; Kronengold, Jack; Zhang, Yalan; Jenkins, David P; Barcia, Gulia; Nabbout, Rima; Bausch, Anne E; Ruth, Peter; Lukowski, Robert; Navaratnam, Dhasakumar S; Kaczmarek, Leonard K

    2016-08-30

    Human mutations in the cytoplasmic C-terminal domain of Slack sodium-activated potassium (KNa) channels result in childhood epilepsy with severe intellectual disability. Slack currents can be increased by pharmacological activators or by phosphorylation of a Slack C-terminal residue by protein kinase C. Using an optical biosensor assay, we find that Slack channel stimulation in neurons or transfected cells produces loss of mass near the plasma membrane. Slack mutants associated with intellectual disability fail to trigger any change in mass. The loss of mass results from the dissociation of the protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) targeting protein, Phactr-1, from the channel. Phactr1 dissociation is specific to wild-type Slack channels and is not observed when related potassium channels are stimulated. Our findings suggest that Slack channels are coupled to cytoplasmic signaling pathways and that dysregulation of this coupling may trigger the aberrant intellectual development associated with specific childhood epilepsies. PMID:27545877

  18. Membrane-associated insulin-like growth factor (IGF binding structures in placental cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ROMANA MASNIKOSA

    2003-11-01

    Full Text Available The biological activities of IGF-I and –II are mediated mainly by the type 1 IGF receptor (IGF 1R and controlled by their interaction with soluble proteins, the IGF binding proteins (IGFBPs. Although there is a growing body of evidence that some IGFBPs may be cell surface-bound, published data concerning cell association of IGFBP-1 are scarce and none of them concern placental cells. The cell membranes used in this study were isolated from term human placentae. Detergent-solubilized membranes were shown to contain two types of IGF binding structures that were separated by gel filtration on a Sephadex G-100 column. Proteins in the first peak were eluted at V0 (Mr > 100 kD and they bound IGF-I with greater specificity and affinity than IGF-II and insulin. Most likely, they represented the IGF 1R. Small proteins (Mr ~ 45 kD were eluted with the membrane proteins in the second maximum. They were able to bind IGF-I and IGF-II, but not insulin. The identity of these proteins was shown to be IGFBP-1 on the basis of their reaction with specific anti-IGFBP-1 antibodies. To the best of our knowledge, the existence of IGFBP-1 associated with human placental cell membranes has not been reported in the literature before. Colocalisation of IGFBP-1 with IGF 1R in cell membranes could provide efficient modulation of IGF 1R receptor-ligand interactions.

  19. The effects of heat exposure on the membranous structure of rat's intestinalepithelium and the biochemical indexes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Guo Biao Zhu; Ji Hong Li

    2000-01-01

    AIM To study the effects of heat exposure and swimming on membranous structure of the small intestinalepithelium and the biochemical indexes.METHODS The distribution of the intra-membranous particles (IMPs) in enteric epithelium of SD rats andthe number of IMPs were analyzed with freeze-etching technique and TxB2, PGFIa, PRL, CORT and totalSA (TSA) were measured with the techniques of biochemistry and radio-immunity.RESULTS Heat exposure markedly affected the distributive pattern of IMPs in intestinal epithelium andmade the numbers of IMPs on the PF and EF faces of cell membrane and nuclear membrane decreased.Swimming exacerbated the above changes. And in the meantime heat exposure resulted in the massivereleasing of the body-hurting substance as TxB2 and reducing of the body-protecting substance as PGFIa.TSA increased obviously. These changes recovered partly after heat exposure, but the number of IMPs onboth PF and EF faces and certain biochemical indexes were still not restored to the levels as in the controlgroup.CONCLUSION Heat exposure and swimming can make the cellular catabolism accelerated and anabolismreduced, then bring about the numbers of IMPs of intestinal epithelium membrane and nuclear membranedecreased, and the distribution was abnormal. TxB2, PGFIa, PRL, CORT and TSA were changedabnormally during heat exposure. And above indexes showed no notable evidence of recovery after stoppingheat exposure 4 hours-24 hours; the delayed injury was obviously presented.

  20. Membrane biofouling characterization: effects of sample preparation procedures on biofilm structure and the microbial community

    KAUST Repository

    Xue, Zheng

    2014-07-15

    Ensuring the quality and reproducibility of results from biofilm structure and microbial community analysis is essential to membrane biofouling studies. This study evaluated the impacts of three sample preparation factors (ie number of buffer rinses, storage time at 4°C, and DNA extraction method) on the downstream analysis of nitrifying biofilms grown on ultrafiltration membranes. Both rinse and storage affected biofilm structure, as suggested by their strong correlation with total biovolume, biofilm thickness, roughness and the spatial distribution of EPS. Significant variations in DNA yields and microbial community diversity were also observed among samples treated by different rinses, storage and DNA extraction methods. For the tested biofilms, two rinses, no storage and DNA extraction with both mechanical and chemical cell lysis from attached biofilm were the optimal sample preparation procedures for obtaining accurate information about biofilm structure, EPS distribution and the microbial community. © 2014 © 2014 Taylor & Francis.

  1. Membrane biofouling characterization: effects of sample preparation procedures on biofilm structure and the microbial community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Zheng; Lu, Huijie; Liu, Wen-Tso

    2014-01-01

    Ensuring the quality and reproducibility of results from biofilm structure and microbial community analysis is essential to membrane biofouling studies. This study evaluated the impacts of three sample preparation factors (ie number of buffer rinses, storage time at 4°C, and DNA extraction method) on the downstream analysis of nitrifying biofilms grown on ultrafiltration membranes. Both rinse and storage affected biofilm structure, as suggested by their strong correlation with total biovolume, biofilm thickness, roughness and the spatial distribution of EPS. Significant variations in DNA yields and microbial community diversity were also observed among samples treated by different rinses, storage and DNA extraction methods. For the tested biofilms, two rinses, no storage and DNA extraction with both mechanical and chemical cell lysis from attached biofilm were the optimal sample preparation procedures for obtaining accurate information about biofilm structure, EPS distribution and the microbial community. PMID:25115516

  2. Structure and distribution of the Bacillus thuringiensis Cry4Ba toxin in lipid membranes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bacillus thuringiensis Cry δ-endotoxins cause death of susceptible insect larvae by forming lytic pores in the midgut epithelial cell membranes. The 65 kDa trypsin activated Cry4Ba toxin was previously shown to be capable of permeabilizing liposomes and forming ionic channels in receptor-free planar lipid bilayers. Here, magnetic ACmode (MACmode) atomic force microscopy (AFM) was used to characterize the lateral distribution and the native molecular structure of the Cry4Ba toxin in the membrane. Liposome fusion and the Langmuir-Blodgett technique were employed for supported lipid bilayer preparations. The toxin preferentially inserted in a self-assembled structure, rather than as a single monomeric molecule. In addition, the spontaneous insertion into receptor-free lipid bilayers lead to formation of characteristic pore-like structures with four-fold symmetry, suggesting that tetramers are the preferred oligomerization state of this toxin

  3. Structure determination of an integral membrane protein at room temperature from crystals in situ

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The X-ray structure determination of an integral membrane protein using synchrotron diffraction data measured in situ at room temperature is demonstrated. The structure determination of an integral membrane protein using synchrotron X-ray diffraction data collected at room temperature directly in vapour-diffusion crystallization plates (in situ) is demonstrated. Exposing the crystals in situ eliminates manual sample handling and, since it is performed at room temperature, removes the complication of cryoprotection and potential structural anomalies induced by sample cryocooling. Essential to the method is the ability to limit radiation damage by recording a small amount of data per sample from many samples and subsequently assembling the resulting data sets using specialized software. The validity of this procedure is established by the structure determination of Haemophilus influenza TehA at 2.3 Å resolution. The method presented offers an effective protocol for the fast and efficient determination of membrane-protein structures at room temperature using third-generation synchrotron beamlines

  4. Structure determination of an integral membrane protein at room temperature from crystals in situ

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Axford, Danny [Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Foadi, James [Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ (United Kingdom); Hu, Nien-Jen; Choudhury, Hassanul Ghani [Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ (United Kingdom); Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Oxfordshire OX11 0FA (United Kingdom); Iwata, So [Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ (United Kingdom); Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Oxfordshire OX11 0FA (United Kingdom); Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8501 (Japan); Beis, Konstantinos [Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ (United Kingdom); Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Oxfordshire OX11 0FA (United Kingdom); Evans, Gwyndaf, E-mail: gwyndaf.evans@diamond.ac.uk [Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Alguel, Yilmaz, E-mail: gwyndaf.evans@diamond.ac.uk [Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom); Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ (United Kingdom); Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Oxfordshire OX11 0FA (United Kingdom)

    2015-05-14

    The X-ray structure determination of an integral membrane protein using synchrotron diffraction data measured in situ at room temperature is demonstrated. The structure determination of an integral membrane protein using synchrotron X-ray diffraction data collected at room temperature directly in vapour-diffusion crystallization plates (in situ) is demonstrated. Exposing the crystals in situ eliminates manual sample handling and, since it is performed at room temperature, removes the complication of cryoprotection and potential structural anomalies induced by sample cryocooling. Essential to the method is the ability to limit radiation damage by recording a small amount of data per sample from many samples and subsequently assembling the resulting data sets using specialized software. The validity of this procedure is established by the structure determination of Haemophilus influenza TehA at 2.3 Å resolution. The method presented offers an effective protocol for the fast and efficient determination of membrane-protein structures at room temperature using third-generation synchrotron beamlines.

  5. Anti-deformed Polyacrylonitrile/Polysulfone Composite Membrane with Binary Structures for Effective Air Filtration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Shichao; Liu, Hui; Yin, Xia; Yu, Jianyong; Ding, Bin

    2016-03-01

    Airborne particle filtration proposed for fibers requires their assembly into porous structures with small pore size and low packing density. The ability to maintain structural stability upon deformation stress in service is essential to ensure a highly porous packing material that functions reliably; however, it has proven extremely challenging. Here, we report a strategy to create anti-deformed poly(ethylene oxide)@polyacrylonitrile/polysulfone (PEO@PAN/PSU) composite membranes with binary structures for effective air filtration by combining multijet electrospinning and physical bonding process. Our approach allows the ambigenous fiber framework including thin PAN nanofibers and fluffy PSU microfibers, through which run interpenetrating PEO bonding structures, to assemble into stable filtration medium with tunable pore size and packing density by facilely optimizing the bimodal fiber construction and benefiting from the PEO inspiration. With the integrated features of small pore size, high porosity, and robust mechanical properties (8.2 MPa), the resultant composite membrane exhibits high filtration efficiency of 99.992%, low pressure drop of 95 Pa, and desirable quality factor of 0.1 Pa(-1); more significantly, it successfully gets rid of the potential safety hazards caused by unexpected structural collapsing under service stress. The synthesis of PEO@PAN/PSU medium would not only make it a promising candidate for PM2.5 governance but also provide a versatile strategy to design and develop stable porous membranes for various applications. PMID:26958995

  6. Pantethine Alters Lipid Composition and Cholesterol Content of Membrane Rafts, With Down-Regulation of CXCL12-Induced T Cell Migration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Gijsel-Bonnello, Manuel; Acar, Niyazi; Molino, Yves; Bretillon, Lionel; Khrestchatisky, Michel; de Reggi, Max; Gharib, Bouchra

    2015-10-01

    Pantethine, a natural low-molecular-weight thiol, shows a broad activity in a large range of essential cellular pathways. It has been long known as a hypolipidemic and hypocholesterolemic agent. We have recently shown that it exerts a neuroprotective action in mouse models of cerebral malaria and Parkinson's disease through multiple mechanisms. In the present study, we looked at its effects on membrane lipid rafts that serve as platforms for molecules engaged in cell activity, therefore providing a target against inappropriate cell response leading to a chronic inflammation. We found that pantethine-treated cells showed a significant change in raft fatty acid composition and cholesterol content, with ultimate downregulation of cell adhesion, CXCL12-driven chemotaxis, and transendothelial migration of various T cell types, including human Jurkat cell line and circulating effector T cells. The mechanisms involved include the alteration of the following: (i) CXCL12 binding to its target cells; (ii) membrane dynamics of CXCR4 and CXCR7, the two CXCL12 receptors; and (iii) cell redox status, a crucial determinant in the regulation of the chemokine system. In addition, we considered the linker for activation of T cells molecule to show that pantethine effects were associated with the displacement from the rafts of the acylated signaling molecules which had their palmitoylation level reduced.. In conclusion, the results presented here, together with previously published findings, indicate that due to its pleiotropic action, pantethine can downregulate the multifaceted process leading to pathogenic T cell activation and migration. PMID:25728249

  7. Levetiracetam differentially alters CD95 expression of neuronal cells and the mitochondrial membrane potential of immune and neuronal cells in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LeeAShapiro

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Epilepsy is a neurological seizure disorder that affects over 100 million people worldwide. Levetiracetam, either alone, as monotherapy, or as adjunctive treatment, is widely used to control certain types of seizures. Despite its increasing popularity as a relatively safe and effective anti-convulsive treatment option, its mechanism(s of action are poorly understood. Studies have suggested neuronal, glial, and immune mechanisms of action. Understanding the precise mechanisms of action of Levetiracetam would be extremely beneficial in helping to understand the processes involved in seizure generation and epilepsy. Moreover, a full understanding of these mechanisms would help to create more efficacious treatments while minimizing side effects. The current study examined the effects of Levetiracetam on the mitochondrial membrane potential of neuronal and non-neuronal cells, in vitro, in order to determine if Levetiracetam influences metabolic processes in these cell types. In addition, this study sought to address possible immune-mediated mechanisms by determining if Levetiracetam alters the expression of immune receptor-ligand pairs. The results show that Levetiracetam induces expression of CD95 and CD178 on NGF-treated C17.2 neuronal cells. The results also show that Levetiracetam increases mitochondrial membrane potential on C17.2 neuronal cells in the presence of nerve growth factor. In contrast, Levetiracetam decreases the mitochondrial membrane potential of splenocytes and this effect was dependent on intact invariant chain, thus implicating immune cell interactions. These results suggest that both neuronal and non-neuronal anti-epileptic activities of Levetiracetam involve control over energy metabolism, more specifically, mΔΨ. Future studies are needed to further investigate this potential mechanism of action.

  8. Structural and Functional Insights into the Cryoprotection of Membranes by the Intrinsically Disordered Dehydrins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Matthew W; Boddington, Kelly F; Warnica, Josephine M; Atkinson, John; McKenna, Sarah; Madge, Jeffrey; Barker, Christine H; Graether, Steffen P

    2015-11-01

    Dehydration can be due to desiccation caused by a lack of environmental water or to freezing caused by a lack of liquid water. Plants have evolved a large family of proteins called LEA (late embryogenesis abundant) proteins, which include the intrinsically disordered dehydrin (dehydration protein) family, to combat these abiotic stresses. Although transcription and translation studies have shown a correlation between dehydration stress and the presence of dehydrins, the biochemical mechanisms have remained somewhat elusive. We examine here the effect and structure of a small model dehydrin (Vitis riparia K2) on the protection of membranes from freeze-thaw stress. This protein is able to bind to liposomes containing phosphatidic acid and protect the liposomes from fusing after freeze-thaw treatment. The presence of K2 did not measurably affect liposome surface accessibility or lipid mobility but did lower its membrane transition temperature by 3 °C. Using sodium dodecyl sulfate as a membrane model, we examined the NMR structure of K2 in the presence and absence of the micelle. Biochemical and NMR experiments show that the conserved, lysine-rich segments are involved in the binding of the dehydrin to a membrane, whereas the poorly conserved φ segments play no role in binding or protection. PMID:26370084

  9. Structure and membrane interaction of the internal fusion peptide of avian sarcoma leukosis virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Shu-Fang; Wu, Cheng-Wei; Kantchev, Eric Assen B; Chang, Ding-Kwo

    2004-12-01

    The structure and membrane interaction of the internal fusion peptide (IFP) fragment of the avian sarcoma and leucosis virus (ASLV) envelope glycoprotein was studied by an array of biophysical methods. The peptide was found to induce lipid mixing of vesicles more strongly than the fusion peptide derived from the N-terminal fusion peptide of influenza virus (HA2-FP). It was observed that the helical structure was enhanced in association with the model membranes, particularly in the N-terminal portion of the peptide. According to the infrared study, the peptide inserted into the membrane in an oblique orientation, but less deeply than the influenza HA2-FP. Analysis of NMR data in sodium dodecyl sulfate micelle suspension revealed that Pro13 of the peptide was located near the micelle-water interface. A type II beta-turn was deduced from NMR data for the peptide in aqueous medium, demonstrating a conformational flexibility of the IFP in analogy to the N-terminal FP such as that of gp41. A loose and multimodal self-assembly was deduced from the rhodamine fluorescence self-quenching experiments for the peptide bound to the membrane bilayer. Oligomerization of the peptide and its variants can also be observed in the electrophoretic experiments, suggesting a property in common with other N-terminal FP of class I fusion proteins. PMID:15606759

  10. The influence of preterm birth on structural alterations of the vision-deprived brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Catherine Y; Wood, Amanda G; Chen, Jian; Wilson, Sarah J; Reutens, David C

    2013-04-01

    Differences in brain structures between blind and sighted individuals have not been widely investigated. Furthermore, existing studies have included individuals who were blinded by retinopathy of prematurity, a condition that is associated with premature birth. Recent pediatric research has reported structural differences in individuals who were born prematurely, suggesting that some of the structural abnormalities previously observed in blind individuals may be related to prematurity rather than being specific to blindness. In the present study, we used voxel-based morphometry to investigate gray and white matter differences between 24 blind and 16 sighted individuals. Of the blind individuals, six were born prematurely and 18 at term. Compared to those born at term, blind individuals born preterm showed differences in gray, but not white, matter volumes in various brain regions. When the preterm individuals were excluded from analysis, there were significant differences between blind and sighted individuals. Full-term blind individuals showed regional gray matter decreases in the cuneus, lingual gyrus, middle occipital gyrus, precuneus, inferior and superior parietal lobules, and the thalamus, and gray matter increases in the globus pallidus. They also showed regional white matter decreases in the cuneus, lingual gyrus, and the posterior cingulate. These differences were observed in blind individuals irrespective of blindness onset age, providing evidence for structural alterations in the mature brain. Our findings highlight the importance of considering the potential impact of premature birth on neurodevelopmental outcomes in studies of blind individuals. PMID:22591801

  11. Alteration of human serum albumin tertiary structure induced by glycation. Spectroscopic study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szkudlarek, A.; Maciążek-Jurczyk, M.; Chudzik, M.; Równicka-Zubik, J.; Sułkowska, A.

    2016-01-01

    The modification of human serum albumin (HSA) structure by non-enzymatic glycation is one of the underlying factors that contribute to the development of complications of diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases. The aim of the present work was to estimate how glycation of HSA altered its tertiary structure. Changes of albumin conformation were investigated by comparison of glycated (gHSA) and non-glycated human serum albumin (HSA) absorption spectra, red edge excitation shift (REES) and synchronous spectra. Effect of glycation on human serum albumin tertiary structure was also investigated by 1H NMR spectroscopy. Formation of gHSA Advanced Glycation End-products (AGEs) caused absorption of UV-VIS light between 310 nm and 400 nm while for non-glycated HSA in this region no absorbance has been registered. Analysis of red edge excitation shift effect allowed for observation of structural changes of gHSA in the hydrophobic pocket containing the tryptophanyl residue. Moreover changes in the microenvironment of tryptophanyl and tyrosyl residues brought about AGEs on the basis of synchronous fluorescence spectroscopy have been confirmed. The influence of glycation process on serum albumin binding to 5-dimethylaminonaphthalene-1-sulfonamide (DNSA), 2-(p-toluidino) naphthalene-6-sulfonic acid (TNS), has been studied. Fluorescence analysis showed that environment of both binding site I and II is modified by galactose glycation.

  12. Influence of plasma-treatments on the structure, superstructure, and function of membrane lipids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammer, Malte U.; Forbrig, Enrico; Weltmann, Klaus-Dieter; Reuter, Stephan

    2012-10-01

    Every cell, eu- or prokaryotic, has a membrane as an interface to the environment. Every substance that is applied from outside the cell has to interact with it. This includes plasma-generated reactive species in the liquid cell environment created by plasma-treatment. By the Singer and Nicolson model, proteins are embedded in a lipid bilayer. Proteins are the functional elements, lipids are the structural elements. Due to the amphiphilic nature of the lipids, they form (super-) structures in an aqueous environment. The exact superstructure is determined by a structural parameter of the lipid, its shape. Here, we show experiments on lipids by fluorophore-based liposome assays and raman spectroscopy. The results show a membrane-activity of plasma-born reactive species against lipids and lipid structures. Based on this results and literature, we propose a model for a lesion-forming mechanism in membranes of some reactive species created by plasma-treatment. It is based on a hydrophobic-hydrophilic mismatch due to lipid peroxidization induced by reactive species generated in liquids by plasma-treatment.

  13. Astrocyte membrane properties are altered in a rat model of developmental cortical malformation but single-cell astrocytic glutamate uptake is robust.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, Elizabeth; Danbolt, Niels Christian; Dulla, Chris G

    2016-05-01

    Developmental cortical malformations (DCMs) are linked with severe epilepsy and are caused by both genetic and environmental insults. DCMs include several neurological diseases, such as focal cortical dysplasia, polymicrogyria, schizencephaly, and others. Human studies have implicated astrocyte reactivity and dysfunction in the pathophysiology of DCMs, but their specific role is unknown. As astrocytes powerfully regulate glutamate neurotransmission, and glutamate levels are known to be increased in human epileptic foci, understanding the role of astrocytes in the pathological sequelae of DCMs is extremely important. Additionally, recent studies examining astrocyte glutamate uptake in DCMs have reported conflicting results, adding confusion to the field. In this study we utilized the freeze lesion (FL) model of DCM, which is known to induce reactive astrocytosis and cause significant changes in astrocyte morphology, proliferation, and distribution. Using whole-cell patch clamp recording from astrocytes, we recorded both UV-uncaging and synaptically evoked glutamate transporter currents (TCs), widely accepted assays of functional glutamate transport by astrocytes. With this approach, we set out to test the hypothesis that astrocyte membrane properties and glutamate transport were disrupted in this model of DCM. Though we found that the developmental maturation of astrocyte membrane resistance was disrupted by FL, glutamate uptake by individual astrocytes was robust throughout FL development. Interestingly, using an immunolabeling approach, we observed spatial and developmental differences in excitatory amino acid transporter (EAAT) expression in FL cortex. Spatially specific differences in EAAT2 (GLT-1) and EAAT1 (GLAST) expression suggest that the relative contribution of each EAAT to astrocytic glutamate uptake may be altered in FL cortex. Lastly, we carefully analyzed the amplitudes and onset times of both synaptically- and UV uncaging-evoked TCs. We found that in

  14. alpha-Globin genes: thalassemic and structural alterations in a Brazilian population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.R.S.C. Wenning

    2000-09-01

    Full Text Available Seven unrelated patients with hemoglobin (Hb H disease and 27 individuals with alpha-chain structural alterations were studied to identify the alpha-globin gene mutations present in the population of Southeast Brazil. The -alpha3.7, --MED and -(alpha20.5 deletions were investigated by PCR, whereas non-deletional alpha-thalassemia (alphaHphalpha, alphaNcoIalpha, aaNcoI, alphaIcalpha and alphaTSaudialpha was screened with restriction enzymes and by nested PCR. Structural alterations were identified by direct DNA sequencing. Of the seven patients with Hb H disease, all of Italian descent, two had the -(alpha20.5/-alpha3.7 genotype, one had the --MED/-alpha3.7 genotype, one had the --MED/alphaHphalpha genotype and three showed interaction of the -alpha3.7 deletion with an unusual, unidentified form of non-deletional alpha-thalassemia [-alpha3.7/(aaT]. Among the 27 patients with structural alterations, 15 (of Italian descent had Hb Hasharon (alpha47Asp->His associated with the -alpha3.7 deletion, 4 (of Italian descent were heterozygous for Hb J-Rovigo (alpha53Ala->Asp, 4 (3 Blacks and 1 Caucasian were heterozygous for Hb Stanleyville-II (alpha78Asn->Lys associated with the alpha+-thalassemia, 1 (Black was heterozygous for Hb G-Pest (alpha74Asp->Asn, 1 (Caucasian was heterozygous for Hb Kurosaki (alpha7Lys->Glu, 1 (Caucasian was heterozygous for Hb Westmead (alpha122His->Gln, and 1 (Caucasian was the carrier of a novel silent variant (Hb Campinas, alpha26Ala->Val. Most of the mutations found reflected the Mediterranean and African origins of the population. Hbs G-Pest and Kurosaki, very rare, and Hb Westmead, common in southern China, were initially described in individuals of ethnic origin differing from those of the carriers reported in the present study and are the first cases to be reported in the Brazilian population.

  15. Experience-dependent plasticity in white matter microstructure: Reasoning training alters structural connectivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allyson P Mackey

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI techniques have made it possible to investigate white matter plasticity in humans. Changes in DTI measures, principally increases in fractional anisotropy (FA, have been observed following training programs as diverse as juggling, meditation, and working memory. Here, we sought to test whether three months of reasoning training could alter white matter microstructure. We recruited participants (n=23 who were enrolled in a course to prepare for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT, a test that places strong demands on reasoning skills, as well as age- and IQ-matched controls planning to take the LSAT in the future (n=22. DTI data were collected at two scan sessions scheduled three months apart. In trained participants but not controls, we observed decreases in radial diffusivity (RD in white matter connecting frontal cortices, and in mean diffusivity (MD within frontal and parietal lobe white matter. Further, participants exhibiting larger gains on the LSAT exhibited greater decreases in MD in the right internal capsule. In summary, reasoning training altered multiple measures of white matter structure in young adults. While the cellular underpinnings are unknown, these results provide evidence of experience-dependent white matter changes that may not be limited to myelination.

  16. Experience-dependent plasticity in white matter microstructure: reasoning training alters structural connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackey, Allyson P; Whitaker, Kirstie J; Bunge, Silvia A

    2012-01-01

    Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) techniques have made it possible to investigate white matter plasticity in humans. Changes in DTI measures, principally increases in fractional anisotropy (FA), have been observed following training programs as diverse as juggling, meditation, and working memory. Here, we sought to test whether three months of reasoning training could alter white matter microstructure. We recruited participants (n = 23) who were enrolled in a course to prepare for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), a test that places strong demands on reasoning skills, as well as age- and IQ-matched controls planning to take the LSAT in the future (n = 22). DTI data were collected at two scan sessions scheduled three months apart. In trained participants but not controls, we observed decreases in radial diffusivity (RD) in white matter connecting frontal cortices, and in mean diffusivity (MD) within frontal and parietal lobe white matter. Further, participants exhibiting larger gains on the LSAT exhibited greater decreases in MD in the right internal capsule. In summary, reasoning training altered multiple measures of white matter structure in young adults. While the cellular underpinnings are unknown, these results provide evidence of experience-dependent white matter changes that may not be limited to myelination. PMID:22936899

  17. Maternal Hyperleptinemia Is Associated with Male Offspring’s Altered Vascular Function and Structure in Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollock, Kelly E.; Talton, Omonseigho O.; Foote, Christopher A.; Reyes-Aldasoro, Constantino C.; Wu, Ho-Hsiang; Ji, Tieming; Martinez-Lemus, Luis A.; Schulz, Laura C.

    2016-01-01

    Children of mothers with gestational diabetes have greater risk of developing hypertension but little is known about the mechanisms by which this occurs. The objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that high maternal concentrations of leptin during pregnancy, which are present in mothers with gestational diabetes and/or obesity, alter blood pressure, vascular structure and vascular function in offspring. Wildtype (WT) offspring of hyperleptinemic, normoglycemic, Leprdb/+ dams were compared to genotype matched offspring of WT-control dams. Vascular function was assessed in male offspring at 6, and at 31 weeks of age after half the offspring had been fed a high fat, high sucrose diet (HFD) for 6 weeks. Blood pressure was increased by HFD but not affected by maternal hyperleptinemia. On a standard diet, offspring of hyperleptinemic dams had outwardly remodeled mesenteric arteries and an enhanced vasodilatory response to insulin. In offspring of WT but not Leprdb/+ dams, HFD induced vessel hypertrophy and enhanced vasodilatory responses to acetylcholine, while HFD reduced insulin responsiveness in offspring of hyperleptinemic dams. Offspring of hyperleptinemic dams had stiffer arteries regardless of diet. Therefore, while maternal hyperleptinemia was largely beneficial to offspring vascular health under a standard diet, it had detrimental effects in offspring fed HFD. These results suggest that circulating maternal leptin concentrations may interact with other factors in the pre- and post -natal environments to contribute to altered vascular function in offspring of diabetic pregnancies. PMID:27187080

  18. Alzheimer's-associated Aβ oligomers show altered structure, immunoreactivity and synaptotoxicity with low doses of oleocanthal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    It now appears likely that soluble oligomers of amyloid-β1-42 peptide, rather than insoluble fibrils, act as the primary neurotoxin in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Consequently, compounds capable of altering the assembly state of these oligomers (referred to as ADDLs) may have potential for AD therapeutics. Phenolic compounds are of particular interest for their ability to disrupt Aβ oligomerization and reduce pathogenicity. This study has focused on oleocanthal (OC), a naturally-occurring phenolic compound found in extra-virgin olive oil. OC increased the immunoreactivity of soluble Aβ species, when assayed with both sequence- and conformation-specific Aβ antibodies, indicating changes in oligomer structure. Analysis of oligomers in the presence of OC showed an upward shift in MW and a ladder-like distribution of SDS-stable ADDL subspecies. In comparison with control ADDLs, oligomers formed in the presence of OC (Aβ-OC) showed equivalent colocalization at synapses but exhibited greater immunofluorescence as a result of increased antibody recognition. The enhanced signal at synapses was not due to increased synaptic binding, as direct detection of fluorescently-labeled ADDLs showed an overall reduction in ADDL signal in the presence of OC. Decreased binding to synapses was accompanied by significantly less synaptic deterioration assayed by drebrin loss. Additionally, treatment with OC improved antibody clearance of ADDLs. These results indicate oleocanthal is capable of altering the oligomerization state of ADDLs while protecting neurons from the synaptopathological effects of ADDLs and suggest OC as a lead compound for development in AD therapeutics.

  19. Alteration of hepatic structure and oxidative stress induced by intravenous nanoceria

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tseng, Michael T., E-mail: mttsen01@louisville.edu [Dept of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky (United States); Lu, Xiaoqin, E-mail: x0lu0003@louisville.edu [Dept of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky (United States); Duan, Xiaoxian, E-mail: x0duan02@louisville.edu [Dept of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky (United States); Hardas, Sarita S., E-mail: sarita.hardas@uky.edu [Dept. of Chemistry, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States); Sultana, Rukhsana, E-mail: rsult2@uky.edu [Dept. of Chemistry, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States); Wu, Peng, E-mail: peng.wu@uky.edu [Dept of Chemical and Materials Engineering, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States); Unrine, Jason M., E-mail: jason.unrine@uky.edu [Dept of Plant and Soil Sciences, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States); Graham, Uschi, E-mail: graham@caer.uky.edu [Center for Applied Energy Research, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States); Butterfield, D. Allan, E-mail: dabcns@uky.edu [Dept. of Chemistry, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States); Grulke, Eric A., E-mail: eric.grulke@uky.edu [Dept of Chemical and Materials Engineering, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States); Yokel, Robert A., E-mail: ryokel@email.uky.edu [Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky (United States)

    2012-04-15

    Beyond the traditional use of ceria as an abrasive, the scope of nanoceria applications now extends into fuel cell manufacturing, diesel fuel additives, and for therapeutic intervention as a putative antioxidant. However, the biological effects of nanoceria exposure have yet to be fully defined, which gave us the impetus to examine its systemic biodistribution and biological responses. An extensively characterized nanoceria (5 nm) dispersion was vascularly infused into rats, which were terminated 1 h, 20 h or 30 days later. Light and electron microscopic tissue characterization was conducted and hepatic oxidative stress parameters determined. We observed acute ceria nanoparticle sequestration by Kupffer cells with subsequent bioretention in parenchymal cells as well. The internalized ceria nanoparticles appeared as spherical agglomerates of varying dimension without specific organelle penetration. In hepatocytes, the agglomerated nanoceria frequently localized to the plasma membrane facing bile canaliculi. Hepatic stellate cells also sequestered nanoceria. Within the sinusoids, sustained nanoceria bioretention was associated with granuloma formations comprised of Kupffer cells and intermingling CD3{sup +} T cells. A statistically significant elevation of serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST) level was seen at 1 and 20 h, but subsided by 30 days after ceria administration. Further, elevated apoptosis was observed on day 30. These findings, together with increased hepatic protein carbonyl levels on day 30, indicate ceria-induced hepatic injury and oxidative stress, respectively. Such observations suggest a single vascular infusion of nanoceria can lead to persistent hepatic retention of particles with possible implications for occupational and therapeutic exposures. -- Highlights: ► Time course study on nanoceria induced hepatic alterations in rats. ► Serum AST elevation indicated acute hepatotoxicity. ► Ceria is retained for up to 30 days in Kupffer cells

  20. Hydration-optimized oriented phospholipid bilayer samples for solid-state NMR structural studies of membrane proteins

    OpenAIRE

    Marassi, Francesca M.; Crowell, Kevin J.

    2003-01-01

    The preparation of oriented, hydration-optimized lipid bilayer samples, for NMR structure determination of membrane proteins, is described. The samples consist of planar phospholipid bilayers, containing membrane proteins, that are oriented on single pairs of glass slides, and are placed in the coil of the NMR probe with the bilayer plane perpendicular to the direction of the magnetic field. Lipid bilayers provide a medium that closely resembles the biological membrane, and sample orientation...

  1. Lipid membrane partitioning of lysolipids and fatty acids: Effects of membrane phase structure and detergent chain length

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Høyrup, Lise Pernille Kristine; Davidsen, Jesper; Jørgensen, Kent

    2001-01-01

    The lipid membrane partitioning of lysolipids (lysoPC) and fatty acids (FA) into unilamellar vesicles composed of saturated DC$-16$/PC phospholipids has been determined by means of isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC). The calorimetric titrations were performed at low temperatures in the ordere...... on, for example, the lipid membrane permeability and the activity of membrane associated enzymes such as phospholipase A$-2$/.......The lipid membrane partitioning of lysolipids (lysoPC) and fatty acids (FA) into unilamellar vesicles composed of saturated DC$-16$/PC phospholipids has been determined by means of isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC). The calorimetric titrations were performed at low temperatures in the ordered...... gel phase and at high temperatures in the disordered fluid phase of the phospholipid membrane vesicles. The long saturated acyl chains of the lysolipids and fatty acids varied from 10 to 16 carbon atoms and all titrations were performed below the critical micellar concentrations (cmc) of the...

  2. Characterization of TBP containing polysiloxane membrane/insulator/semiconductor structures for hexavalent chromium detection

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zazoua, A. [Universite de Jijel, BP 98, Ouled Aissa, 18000 Jijel (Algeria); Universite de Annaba, BP 12, El-Hadjar, Annaba (Algeria); Kherrat, R.; Samar, M.H. [Universite de Annaba, BP 12, El-Hadjar, Annaba (Algeria); Errachid, A. [Laboratori de Nanobioenginyeria-IBEC, CIBER, Parc Cientific de Barcelona (PCB)-Departament d' Electronica. Universitat de Barcelona, C/Marti i Franques 1, 08028 Barcelona (Spain); Jaffrezic-Renault, N. [LSA - UMR 5180 CNRS - Universite Claude Bernard Lyon 1, 69622 Villeurbanne cedex (France)], E-mail: nicole.jaffrezic@univ-lyon1.fr; Bessueille, F.; Leonard, D. [LSA - UMR 5180 CNRS - Universite Claude Bernard Lyon 1, 69622 Villeurbanne cedex (France)

    2008-07-01

    A hexavalent chromium-sensitive EMIS sensor (electrolyte membrane insulator semiconductor sensor) is prepared by deposition of a tributylphosphate (TBP) ionophore-containing siloprene membrane on a Si/SiO{sub 2}/Si{sub 3}N{sub 4} structure. The developed EMIS sensor was studied by means of impedance spectroscopy, capacitance-voltage, X-ray photoelectron spectrometry and FT-IR spectroscopy. From the flat-band shift of the EMIS structure, the nersntian response to the anionic species Cr{sub 2}O{sub 7}{sup -} was demonstrated. The linear range of detection is 10{sup -4} M to 10{sup -1} M and the detection limit is 10{sup -5} M. Sulfate and chloride anions are shown not to be interfering whereas carbonate ions present a pK{sup pot} equal to 0.19.

  3. Crystal structure of the Neisseria gonorrhoeae MtrD inner membrane multidrug efflux pump.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jani Reddy Bolla

    Full Text Available Neisseria gonorrhoeae is an obligate human pathogen and the causative agent of the sexually-transmitted disease gonorrhea. The control of this disease has been compromised by the increasing proportion of infections due to antibiotic-resistant strains, which are growing at an alarming rate. The MtrCDE tripartite multidrug efflux pump, belonging to the hydrophobic and amphiphilic efflux resistance-nodulation-cell division (HAE-RND family, spans both the inner and outer membranes of N. gonorrhoeae and confers resistance to a variety of antibiotics and toxic compounds. We here report the crystal structure of the inner membrane MtrD multidrug efflux pump, which reveals a novel structural feature that is not found in other RND efflux pumps.

  4. Determining the Secondary Structure of Membrane Proteins and Peptides Via Electron Spin Echo Envelope Modulation (ESEEM) Spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Lishan; Mayo, Daniel J; Sahu, Indra D; Zhou, Andy; Zhang, Rongfu; McCarrick, Robert M; Lorigan, Gary A

    2015-01-01

    Revealing detailed structural and dynamic information of membrane embedded or associated proteins is challenging due to their hydrophobic nature which makes NMR and X-ray crystallographic studies challenging or impossible. Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) has emerged as a powerful technique to provide essential structural and dynamic information for membrane proteins with no size limitations in membrane systems which mimic their natural lipid bilayer environment. Therefore, tremendous efforts have been devoted toward the development and application of EPR spectroscopic techniques to study the structure of biological systems such as membrane proteins and peptides. This chapter introduces a novel approach established and developed in the Lorigan lab to investigate membrane protein and peptide local secondary structures utilizing the pulsed EPR technique electron spin echo envelope modulation (ESEEM) spectroscopy. Detailed sample preparation strategies in model membrane protein systems and the experimental setup are described. Also, the ability of this approach to identify local secondary structure of membrane proteins and peptides with unprecedented efficiency is demonstrated in model systems. Finally, applications and further developments of this ESEEM approach for probing larger size membrane proteins produced by overexpression systems are discussed. PMID:26477255

  5. Chronic hypoxia enhances adenosine release in rat PC12 cells by altering adenosine metabolism and membrane transport.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobayashi, S; Zimmermann, H; Millhorn, D E

    2000-02-01

    Acute exposure to hypoxia causes a release of adenosine (ADO) that is inversely related to the O2 levels in oxygen-sensitive pheochromocytoma (PC12) cells. In the current study, chronic exposure (48 h) of PC12 cells to moderate hypoxia (5% O2) significantly enhanced the release of ADO during severe, acute hypoxia (1% O2). Investigation into the intra- and extracellular mechanisms underpinning the secretion of ADO in PC12 cells chronically exposed to hypoxia revealed changes in gene expression and activities of several key enzymes associated with ADO production and metabolism, as well as the down-regulation of a nucleoside transporter. Decreases in the enzymatic activities of ADO kinase and ADO deaminase accompanied by an increase in those of cytoplasmic and ecto-5'-nucleotidases bring about an increased capacity to produce intra- and extracellular ADO. This increased potential to generate ADO and decreased capacity to metabolize ADO indicate that PC12 cells shift toward an ADO producer phenotype during hypoxia. The reduced function of the rat equilibrative nucleoside transporter rENT1 also plays a role in controlling extracellular ADO levels. The hypoxia-induced alterations in the ADO metabolic enzymes and the rENT1 transporter seem to increase the extracellular concentration of ADO. The biological significance of this regulation is unclear but is likely to be associated with modulating cellular activity during hypoxia. PMID:10646513

  6. A Cluster of Thin Tubular Structures Mediates Transformation of the Endoplasmic Reticulum to Autophagic Isolation Membrane

    OpenAIRE

    Uemura, Takefumi; Yamamoto, Masaya; Kametaka, Ai; Sou, Yu-shin; Yabashi, Atsuko; Yamada, Akane; Annoh, Hiromichi; Kametaka, Satoshi; Komatsu, Masaaki; Waguri, Satoshi

    2014-01-01

    Recent findings have suggested that the autophagic isolation membrane (IM) might originate from a domain of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) called the omegasome. However, the morphological relationships between ER, omegasome, and IM remain unclear. In the present study, we found that hybrid structures composed of a double FYVE domain-containing protein 1 (DFCP1)-positive omegasome and the IM accumulated in Atg3-deficient mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs). Moreover, correlative light and elect...

  7. A structural and compositional analysis of intervessel pit membranes in the sapwood of some mangrove woods

    OpenAIRE

    Schmitz, N.; Koch, G; Beeckman, H.; N. Koedam; Robert, E.M.R.; Schmitt, U.

    2012-01-01

    Intervessel pits are prominent wall structures involved in the water transport mechanism of land plants. The role of their intra-tree variation in the regulation of water transport, however, remains enigmatic. The hypothesis was tested that pit membrane thickness and degree of impregnation with phenolic substances increase along the stem axis with increasing tension on the water column as an adaptation to the higher risk for cavitation. Wood samples were taken at different heights from the ma...

  8. Effect of applied electric field on structure and permeability of chitin nanofiber-reinforced chitosan membranes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tishchenko, Galina; Peter, Jakub; Pavlova, Ewa; Brus, Jiří; Netopilík, Miloš; Pekárek, Michal; Sedláková, Zdeňka; Rosova, E. Yu.; Smirnov, M.; Elyashevich, G. K.

    Praha : Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry, 2009. s. 137. ISBN 978-80-85009-59-0. [Prague Meetings on Macromolecules /73./ New Frontiers in Macromolecular Science: From Macromolecular Concepts of Living Matter to Polymers for Better Quality of Life. 05.07.2009-09.07.2009, Prague] R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA525/08/0803 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40500505 Keywords : chitosan membrane structure * permeability * electric field * chitin whiskers Subject RIV: CD - Macromolecular Chemistry

  9. Structure and Function of HAMLET: Epitopes, Membrane Interactions and Molecular Recognition

    OpenAIRE

    Ho, Chin Shing

    2014-01-01

    HAMLET (Human Alpha-lactalbumin Made LEthal to Tumor cells) is a complex of partially unfolded human alpha-lactalbumin and oleic acid that kills many different types of tumor cells and shows therapeutic efficacy in animal models and clinical studies. This thesis aims to (1) elucidate the structure of HAMLET and the exposure of biologically active domains, (2) define the contribution of lipids to the tumoricidal effect of HAMLET, (3) characterize the membranes response to HAMLET and the pertur...

  10. Structural requirement for the rapid movement of charged molecules across membranes. Experiments with tetraphenylborate analogues.

    OpenAIRE

    Benz, R

    1988-01-01

    Charge-pulse experiments were performed in the presence of structural analogues of tetraphenylborate (TPB) on membranes made of dioleoyl phosphatidylethanolamine and dioleoyl phosphatidylcholine. The analysis of the experimental results using a previously proposed model allowed the calculation of the partition coefficient, beta, and of the translocation rate constant, kappa i. The temperature dependence of the partition coefficients was used to calculate the thermodynamics of the adsorption o...

  11. Expression, refolding, and initial structural characterization of the Y. pestis Ail outer membrane protein in lipids

    OpenAIRE

    Plesniak, Leigh A.; Mahalakshmi, Radhakrishnan; Rypien, Candace; Yang, Yuan; Racic, Jasmina; Marassi, Francesca M.

    2010-01-01

    Ail is an outer membrane protein and virulence factor of Yersinia pestis, an extremely pathogenic, category A biothreat agent, responsible for precipitating massive human plague pandemics throughout history. Due to its key role in bacterial adhesion to host cells and bacterial resistance to host defense, Ail is a key target for anti-plague therapy. However, little information is available about the molecular aspects of its function and interactions with the human host, and the structure of Ai...

  12. Diffusion in Cytoplasm: Effects of Excluded Volume Due to Internal Membranes and Cytoskeletal Structures

    OpenAIRE

    Novak, Igor L.; Kraikivski, Pavel; Slepchenko, Boris M.

    2009-01-01

    The intricate geometry of cytoskeletal networks and internal membranes causes the space available for diffusion in cytoplasm to be convoluted, thereby affecting macromolecule diffusivity. We present a first systematic computational study of this effect by approximating intracellular structures as mixtures of random overlapping obstacles of various shapes. Effective diffusion coefficients are computed using a fast homogenization technique. It is found that a simple two-parameter power law prov...

  13. Clay minerals as alteration products in acidic igneous rocks from Oued Belif structure (Nefza, North Tunisia)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Document available in extended abstract form only. Full text of publication follows: The Oued Belif structure is located in the north of Tunisia, seven kilometers north of Nefza city. It is part of the widespread Northern Tunisian 'Nappe Zone' composed of thrust sheets. This structure is delimited by a breccia rim, which encloses Triassic salt-related rocks and Serravallian to Tortonian (8.3 to 12.9 Ma) magmatic bodies (rhyodacite and granodiorite) associated with skarn deposits. Microscopic observation, chemical analyses, XRD, SEM and TEM investigations reveal that the mineral paragenesis of magmatic rocks consists mainly of clay minerals associated with other minerals such as quartz, biotite, feldspar and iron oxide. The outcropping magmatic rocks (granodiorite and rhyodacite) show an argillaceous paragenesis. The latter is made up of illite, kaolinite, smectite. The occurrence of these minerals is related to the meteoric weathering processes. Buried magmatic rocks, crossed by Oued Belif 45 borehole, show a considerable mobilization and removal of feldspar materiel and primary glass. This borehole crosses 370 m of the succession attributed to late Miocene. From bottom to top, we can identify (i) safe granodiorite; (ii) altered granodiorite; (iii) an alternation of altered rhyodacite and clayey unit rich in pyrite and (iiii) a very clayey rhyodacite unit. The clay fraction of the OB 45 borehole samples consists mainly of illite, kaolinite and smectite. These clay minerals were formed by the hydrothermal circulations through micro-fractures in magmatic rocks, which are forced by the high thermal gradient. The weathering of biotites, feldspars and primary glass contained both in buried and in outcropping magmatic rocks, produces illite, smectite and kaolinite. This is the result of the combined effect of subsurface oxidizing meteoric fluids and deep reducing hydrothermal fluids. (authors)

  14. Brain structural alterations in obsessive-compulsive disorder patients with autogenous and reactive obsessions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Subirà

    Full Text Available Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD is a clinically heterogeneous condition. Although structural brain alterations have been consistently reported in OCD, their interaction with particular clinical subtypes deserves further examination. Among other approaches, a two-group classification in patients with autogenous and reactive obsessions has been proposed. The purpose of the present study was to assess, by means of a voxel-based morphometry analysis, the putative brain structural correlates of this classification scheme in OCD patients. Ninety-five OCD patients and 95 healthy controls were recruited. Patients were divided into autogenous (n = 30 and reactive (n = 65 sub-groups. A structural magnetic resonance image was acquired for each participant and pre-processed with SPM8 software to obtain a volume-modulated gray matter map. Whole-brain and voxel-wise comparisons between the study groups were then performed. In comparison to the autogenous group, reactive patients showed larger gray matter volumes in the right Rolandic operculum. When compared to healthy controls, reactive patients showed larger volumes in the putamen (bilaterally, while autogenous patients showed a smaller left anterior temporal lobe. Also in comparison to healthy controls, the right middle temporal gyrus was smaller in both patient subgroups. Our results suggest that autogenous and reactive obsessions depend on partially dissimilar neural substrates. Our findings provide some neurobiological support for this classification scheme and contribute to unraveling the neurobiological basis of clinical heterogeneity in OCD.

  15. Resources Alter the Structure and Increase Stochasticity in Bromeliad Microfauna Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petermann, Jana S.; Kratina, Pavel; Marino, Nicholas A. C.; MacDonald, A. Andrew M.; Srivastava, Diane S.

    2015-01-01

    Although stochastic and deterministic processes have been found to jointly shape structure of natural communities, the relative importance of both forces may vary across different environmental conditions and across levels of biological organization. We tested the effects of abiotic environmental conditions, altered trophic interactions and dispersal limitation on the structure of aquatic microfauna communities in Costa Rican tank bromeliads. Our approach combined natural gradients in environmental conditions with experimental manipulations of bottom-up interactions (resources), top-down interactions (predators) and dispersal at two spatial scales in the field. We found that resource addition strongly increased the abundance and reduced the richness of microfauna communities. Community composition shifted in a predictable way towards assemblages dominated by flagellates and ciliates but with lower abundance and richness of algae and amoebae. While all functional groups responded strongly and predictably to resource addition, similarity among communities at the species level decreased, suggesting a role of stochasticity in species-level assembly processes. Dispersal limitation did not affect the communities. Since our design excluded potential priority effects we can attribute the differences in community similarity to increased demographic stochasticity of resource-enriched communities related to erratic changes in population sizes of some species. In contrast to resources, predators and environmental conditions had negligible effects on community structure. Our results demonstrate that bromeliad microfauna communities are strongly controlled by bottom-up forces. They further suggest that the relative importance of stochasticity may change with productivity and with the organizational level at which communities are examined. PMID:25775464

  16. Altered topological organization of white matter structural networks in patients with neuromyelitis optica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaou Liu

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: To investigate the topological alterations of the whole-brain white-matter (WM structural networks in patients with neuromyelitis optica (NMO. METHODS: The present study involved 26 NMO patients and 26 age- and sex-matched healthy controls. WM structural connectivity in each participant was imaged with diffusion-weighted MRI and represented in terms of a connectivity matrix using deterministic tractography method. Graph theory-based analyses were then performed for the characterization of brain network properties. A multiple linear regression analysis was performed on each network metric between the NMO and control groups. RESULTS: The NMO patients exhibited abnormal small-world network properties, as indicated by increased normalized characteristic path length, increased normalized clustering and increased small-worldness. Furthermore, largely similar hub distributions of the WM structural networks were observed between NMO patients and healthy controls. However, regional efficiency in several brain areas of NMO patients was significantly reduced, which were mainly distributed in the default-mode, sensorimotor and visual systems. Furthermore, we have observed increased regional efficiency in a few brain regions such as the orbital parts of the superior and middle frontal and fusiform gyri. CONCLUSION: Although the NMO patients in this study had no discernible white matter T2 lesions in the brain, we hypothesize that the disrupted topological organization of WM networks provides additional evidence for subtle, widespread cerebral WM pathology in NMO.

  17. Cryo-EM structure of lysenin pore elucidates membrane insertion by an aerolysin family protein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bokori-Brown, Monika; Martin, Thomas G.; Naylor, Claire E.; Basak, Ajit K.; Titball, Richard W.; Savva, Christos G.

    2016-04-01

    Lysenin from the coelomic fluid of the earthworm Eisenia fetida belongs to the aerolysin family of small β-pore-forming toxins (β-PFTs), some members of which are pathogenic to humans and animals. Despite efforts, a high-resolution structure of a channel for this family of proteins has been elusive and therefore the mechanism of activation and membrane insertion remains unclear. Here we determine the pore structure of lysenin by single particle cryo-EM, to 3.1 Å resolution. The nonameric assembly reveals a long β-barrel channel spanning the length of the complex that, unexpectedly, includes the two pre-insertion strands flanking the hypothetical membrane-insertion loop. Examination of other members of the aerolysin family reveals high structural preservation in this region, indicating that the membrane-insertion pathway in this family is conserved. For some toxins, proteolytic activation and pro-peptide removal will facilitate unfolding of the pre-insertion strands, allowing them to form the β-barrel of the channel.

  18. Efficient and reusable polyamide-56 nanofiber/nets membrane with bimodal structures for air filtration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bowen; Zhang, Shichao; Wang, Xueli; Yu, Jianyong; Ding, Bin

    2015-11-01

    Nanofibrous media that both possess high airborne particle interception efficiency and robust air permeability would have broad technological implications for areas ranging from individual protection and industrial security to environmental governance; however, creating such filtration media has proved extremely challenging. Here we report a strategy to construct the bio-based polyamide-56 nanofiber/nets (PA-56 NFN) membranes with bimodal structures for effective air filtration via one-step electrospinning/netting. The PA-56 membranes are composed of completely covered two-dimensional (2D) ultrathin (∼20 nm) nanonets which are optimized by facilely regulating the solution concentration, and the bonded scaffold fibers constructed cavity structures which are synchronously created by using the CH3COOH inspiration. With integrated properties of small aperture, high porosity, and bonded scaffold, the resulting PA-56 NFN membranes exhibit high filtration efficiency of 99.995%, low pressure drop of 111 Pa, combined with large dust holding capacity of 49 g/m(2) and dust-cleaning regeneration ability, for filtrating ultrafine airborne particles in the most safe manner involving sieving principle and surface filtration. The successful synthesis of PA-56 NFN medium would not only make it a promising candidate for air filtration, but also provide new insights into the design and development of nanonet-based bimodal structures for various applications. PMID:26188726

  19. Structure of a bacterial type III secretion system in contact with a host membrane in situ

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nans, Andrea; Kudryashev, Mikhail; Saibil, Helen R.; Hayward, Richard D.

    2015-12-01

    Many bacterial pathogens of animals and plants use a conserved type III secretion system (T3SS) to inject virulence effector proteins directly into eukaryotic cells to subvert host functions. Contact with host membranes is critical for T3SS activation, yet little is known about T3SS architecture in this state or the conformational changes that drive effector translocation. Here we use cryo-electron tomography and sub-tomogram averaging to derive the intact structure of the primordial Chlamydia trachomatis T3SS in the presence and absence of host membrane contact. Comparison of the averaged structures demonstrates a marked compaction of the basal body (4 nm) occurs when the needle tip contacts the host cell membrane. This compaction is coupled to a stabilization of the cytosolic sorting platform-ATPase. Our findings reveal the first structure of a bacterial T3SS from a major human pathogen engaged with a eukaryotic host, and reveal striking `pump-action' conformational changes that underpin effector injection.

  20. Crystal Structure of the Herpesvirus Nuclear Egress Complex Provides Insights into Inner Nuclear Membrane Remodeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tzviya Zeev-Ben-Mordehai

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Although nucleo-cytoplasmic transport is typically mediated through nuclear pore complexes, herpesvirus capsids exit the nucleus via a unique vesicular pathway. Together, the conserved herpesvirus proteins pUL31 and pUL34 form the heterodimeric nuclear egress complex (NEC, which, in turn, mediates the formation of tight-fitting membrane vesicles around capsids at the inner nuclear membrane. Here, we present the crystal structure of the pseudorabies virus NEC. The structure revealed that a zinc finger motif in pUL31 and an extensive interaction network between the two proteins stabilize the complex. Comprehensive mutational analyses, characterized both in situ and in vitro, indicated that the interaction network is not redundant but rather complementary. Fitting of the NEC crystal structure into the recently determined cryoEM-derived hexagonal lattice, formed in situ by pUL31 and pUL34, provided details on the molecular basis of NEC coat formation and inner nuclear membrane remodeling.

  1. Ultrastructural and cytochemical study of membrane alterations in x-irradiated liver tissue from normal and vitamin E-deficient ducklings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An investigation into the differential susceptibility of liver cellular membranes to peroxidative processes has been performed, using x irradiation on the liver surface, resulting in a a 3-mm penetrating gradient of membrane damage. Ultrastructural, cytochemical, and histochemical findings in this area point to a differential sensitivity of cellular membranes to x irradiation. The plasma membrane and the lysosomal membrane, containing much lipid and cholesterol and little membrane and the lysosomal membrane, containing much lipid and cholesterol and little vitamin E, are highly susceptible to x irradiation. Less sensitive are the membranes of mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum, containing relatively much vitamin E and proteins and a lower amount of lipids and cholesterol

  2. Lipid membrane: inelastic deformation of surface structure by an atomic force microscope

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张静; 孙润广

    2002-01-01

    The stability of the 1,2-Dioleoyl-sn-Glycero-3-[phospho-rac-1-Glycerol-Na] liposome in the liquid crystalline statehave been investigated using an atomic force microscope (AFM). We have observed the inelastic deformation of thesample surface. The AFM tip causes persistent deformation of the surface of the lipid membrane, in which some of thelipid molecules are eventually pushed or dragged by the AFM tip. The experiment shows how the surface structure ofthe lipid membrane can be created by the interaction between the AFM tip and lipid membrane. When the operatingforce exceeds 10-8 N, it leads to large deformations of the surface. A square region of about 1×1μm2 is created by thescanning probe on the surface. When the operating force is between 10-11N and 10-8N, it can image the topographyof the surface of the lipid membrane. The stability of the sample is related to the concentration of the medium in whichthe sample is prepared.

  3. Effect of saline stress on plasma membrane structure and function of barley roots

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barely (Hordeum vulgare L. c v. Black Local) plants were grown hydroponic ally under different saline stresses (50, 100, 150 And 200 mm NaCI. The adverse effect of each saline stress on the structure and function of root cells plasma membrane was studied in terms of root surface ATPase activation by NaCI in the reaction mixture. Was 0, 50, 100. 150 and 200mM. ATPase activity was found to be increased gradually at certain concentrations of NaCI. For control and 50mM stressed plants, the increase in root surface ATPase activity was started at 150mM NaCI. For 100mM stressed plants it was started at 100mM NaCI. For 150 and 200mM stressed plants it was stated at 50mM NaCI Results indicated that the adverse effect of the growth medium saline stresses on the integrity of the plasma membrane was started at 100mM saline stress. Accordingly the role of plasma membrane bound ATPase in active ion transport was disturbed at 100mM saline stress and may be impaired at 150 and 200mM saline stresses. It was suggested that the lipid environment of the plasma membrane surrounding ATPase was modified by the saline stresses 100-200mM. (author). 38 refs., 2 figs., 2 tabs

  4. Developments of new proton conducting membranes based on different polybenzimidazole structures for fuel cells applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carollo, A.; Quartarone, E.; Tomasi, C.; Mustarelli, P.; Belotti, F.; Magistris, A. [Department of Physical Chemistry, IENI-CNR and INSTM, University of Pavia Via Taramelli 16, 27100 Pavia (Italy); Maestroni, F.; Parachini, M.; Garlaschelli, L.; Righetti, P.P. [Department of Organic Chemistry, University of Pavia Via Taramelli 12, 27100 Pavia (Italy)

    2006-09-29

    The current goal on PEMFCs research points towards the optimization of devices working at temperatures above 100{sup o}C and at low humidity levels. Acid-doped polybenzimidazoles are particularly appealing because of high proton conductivity without humidification and promising fuel cells performances. In this paper we present the development of new proton conducting membranes based on different polybenzimidazole (PBI) structures. Phosphoric acid-doped membranes, synthesized from benzimidazole-based monomers with increased basicity and molecular weight, are presented and discussed. Test of methanol crossover and diffusion were performed in order to check the membrane suitability for DMFCs. Both the acid doping level and proton conductivity remarkably increase with the membrane molecular weight and basicity, which strictly depend on the amount of NH-groups as well as on their position in the polymer backbone. In particular, a conductivity value exceeding 0.1Scm{sup -1} at RH=40% and 80{sup o}C was reached in the case of the pyridine-based PBI. (author)

  5. Structure of the poly-C9 component of the complement membrane attack complex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudkina, Natalya V.; Spicer, Bradley A.; Reboul, Cyril F.; Conroy, Paul J.; Lukoyanova, Natalya; Elmlund, Hans; Law, Ruby H. P.; Ekkel, Susan M.; Kondos, Stephanie C.; Goode, Robert J. A.; Ramm, Georg; Whisstock, James C.; Saibil, Helen R.; Dunstone, Michelle A.

    2016-02-01

    The membrane attack complex (MAC)/perforin-like protein complement component 9 (C9) is the major component of the MAC, a multi-protein complex that forms pores in the membrane of target pathogens. In contrast to homologous proteins such as perforin and the cholesterol-dependent cytolysins (CDCs), all of which require the membrane for oligomerisation, C9 assembles directly onto the nascent MAC from solution. However, the molecular mechanism of MAC assembly remains to be understood. Here we present the 8 Å cryo-EM structure of a soluble form of the poly-C9 component of the MAC. These data reveal a 22-fold symmetrical arrangement of C9 molecules that yield an 88-strand pore-forming β-barrel. The N-terminal thrombospondin-1 (TSP1) domain forms an unexpectedly extensive part of the oligomerisation interface, thus likely facilitating solution-based assembly. These TSP1 interactions may also explain how additional C9 subunits can be recruited to the growing MAC subsequent to membrane insertion.

  6. Imaging heterogeneity of membrane and storage lipids in transgenic Camelina sativa seeds with altered fatty acid profiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horn, Patrick J; Silva, Jillian E; Anderson, Danielle; Fuchs, Johannes; Borisjuk, Ljudmilla; Nazarenus, Tara J; Shulaev, Vladimir; Cahoon, Edgar B; Chapman, Kent D

    2013-10-01

    Engineering compositional changes in oilseeds is typically accomplished by introducing new enzymatic step(s) and/or by blocking or enhancing an existing enzymatic step(s) in a seed-specific manner. However, in practice, the amounts of lipid species that accumulate in seeds are often different from what one would predict from enzyme expression levels, and these incongruences may be rooted in an incomplete understanding of the regulation of seed lipid metabolism at the cellular/tissue level. Here we show by mass spectrometry imaging approaches that triacylglycerols and their phospholipid precursors are distributed differently within cotyledons and the hypocotyl/radicle axis in embryos of the oilseed crop Camelina sativa, indicating tissue-specific heterogeneity in triacylglycerol metabolism. Phosphatidylcholines and triacylglycerols enriched in linoleic acid (C18:2) were preferentially localized to the axis tissues, whereas lipid classes enriched in gadoleic acid (C20:1) were preferentially localized to the cotyledons. Manipulation of seed lipid compositions by heterologous over-expression of an acyl-acyl carrier protein thioesterase, or by suppression of fatty acid desaturases and elongases, resulted in new overall seed storage lipid compositions with altered patterns of distribution of phospholipid and triacylglycerol in transgenic embryos. Our results reveal previously unknown differences in acyl lipid distribution in Camelina embryos, and suggest that this spatial heterogeneity may or may not be able to be changed effectively in transgenic seeds depending upon the targeted enzyme(s)/pathway(s). Further, these studies point to the importance of resolving the location of metabolites in addition to their quantities within plant tissues. PMID:23808562

  7. Ion beam evaluation of silicon carbide membrane structures intended for particle detectors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pallon, J.; Syväjärvi, M.; Wang, Q.; Yakimova, R.; Iakimov, T.; Elfman, M.; Kristiansson, P.; Nilsson, E. J. C.; Ros, L.

    2016-03-01

    Thin ion transmission detectors can be used as a part of a telescope detector for mass and energy identification but also as a pre-cell detector in a microbeam system for studies of biological effects from single ion hits on individual living cells. We investigated a structure of graphene on silicon carbide (SiC) with the purpose to explore a thin transmission detector with a very low noise level and having mechanical strength to act as a vacuum window. In order to reach very deep cavities in the SiC wafers for the preparation of the membrane in the detector, we have studied the Inductive Coupled Plasma technique to etch deep circular cavities in 325 μm prototype samples. By a special high temperature process the outermost layers of the etched SiC wafers were converted into a highly conductive graphitic layer. The produced cavities were characterized by electron microscopy, optical microscopy and proton energy loss measurements. The average membrane thickness was found to be less than 40 μm, however, with a slightly curved profile. Small spots representing much thinner membrane were also observed and might have an origin in crystal defects or impurities. Proton energy loss measurement (also called Scanning Transmission Ion Microscopy, STIM) is a well suited technique for this thickness range. This work presents the first steps of fabricating a membrane structure of SiC and graphene which may be an attractive approach as a detector due to the combined properties of SiC and graphene in a monolithic materials structure.

  8. Structure and electrochemical properties of track membranes with a polymer layer obtained by plasma polymerization of acetylene

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The structure and electrochemical properties of poly(ethylene terephthalate) track membrane modified by acetylene plasma were studied. It was found that polymer deposition on the surface of a track membrane by plasma polymerization of acetylene results in the creation of composite membranes that, in the case of formation of a thin semipermeable layer, possess an asymmetry of conductivity in electrolyte solutions – a rectification effect. It is caused by the reduction of the pores diameter due to the plasma polymer that results in changing the pore geometry, and as well due to the existence of an interface between the initial membrane and the polymer layer which have various concentrations of carboxyl groups.

  9. The Relation Between Structure-Performance of Thin Film Composite Membranes and the Tools Used for Their Fabrication Method

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Briceno, Kelly; Javakhishvili, Irakli; Guo, Haofei;

    matter the absence of any tool using only water evaporation. In this work different methods of avoiding drop formation during the membrane preparation are tested to evaluate how the preparation methods influence the membrane structure and the final membrane properties. Understanding the membrane...... followed by immersion in TMC/heptane solution. The polysulfone support is in contact with the MPD/aqueous phase using immersion or pipetting. Further the use of a rubber wiper or absence of any tool to eliminate the aqueous solution droplets is evaluated. Both NaCl rejection and water and NaCl fluxes are...

  10. pH control structure design for a periodically operated membrane separation process

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prado Rubio, Oscar Andres; Jørgensen, Sten Bay; Jonsson, Gunnar Eigil

    2012-01-01

    A bioreactor integrated with an electrically driven membrane separation process (Reverse Electro-Enhanced Dialysis – REED) is under investigation as potential technology for intensifying lactic acid bioproduction. In this contribution the pH regulation issue in the periodically operated REED module...... structure is selected. The system controls pH using the imposed current density and resets the current density manipulating the hydroxide inlet concentration to the dialysate channel. The control structure is satisfactorily achieving a desired pH at the outlet of the feed channel in REED from period to...

  11. Bathroom greywater recycling using polyelectrolyte-complex bilayer membrane: Advanced study of membrane structure and treatment efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, K S; Poh, P E; Chong, M N; Chan, E S; Lau, E V; Saint, C P

    2016-09-01

    Polyelectrolyte-complex bilayer membrane (PCBM) was fabricated using biodegradable chitosan and alginate polymers for subsequent application in the treatment of bathroom greywater. In this study, the properties of PCBMs were studied and it was found that the formation of polyelectrolyte network reduced the molecular weight cut-off (MWCO) from 242kDa in chitosan membrane to 2.71kDa in PCBM. The decrease in MWCO of PCBM results in better greywater treatment efficiency, subsequently demonstrated in a greywater filtration study where treated greywater effluent met the household reclaimed water standard of <2 NTU turbidity and <30ppm total suspended solids (TSS). In addition, a further 20% improvement in chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal was achieved as compared to a single layer chitosan membrane. Results from this study show that the biodegradable PCBM is a potential membrane material in producing clean treated greywater for non-potable applications. PMID:27185127

  12. Bioturbating shrimp alter the structure and diversity of bacterial communities in coastal marine sediments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laverock, Bonnie; Smith, Cindy J; Tait, Karen; Osborn, A Mark; Widdicombe, Steve; Gilbert, Jack A

    2010-12-01

    Bioturbation is a key process in coastal sediments, influencing microbially driven cycling of nutrients as well as the physical characteristics of the sediment. However, little is known about the distribution, diversity and function of the microbial communities that inhabit the burrows of infaunal macroorganisms. In this study, terminal-restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis was used to investigate variation in the structure of bacterial communities in sediment bioturbated by the burrowing shrimp Upogebia deltaura or Callianassa subterranea. Analyses of 229 sediment samples revealed significant differences between bacterial communities inhabiting shrimp burrows and those inhabiting ambient surface and subsurface sediments. Bacterial communities in burrows from both shrimp species were more similar to those in surface-ambient than subsurface-ambient sediment (R=0.258, P<0.001). The presence of shrimp was also associated with changes in bacterial community structure in surrounding surface sediment, when compared with sediments uninhabited by shrimp. Bacterial community structure varied with burrow depth, and also between individual burrows, suggesting that the shrimp's burrow construction, irrigation and maintenance behaviour affect the distribution of bacteria within shrimp burrows. Subsequent sequence analysis of bacterial 16S rRNA genes from surface sediments revealed differences in the relative abundance of bacterial taxa between shrimp-inhabited and uninhabited sediments; shrimp-inhabited sediment contained a higher proportion of proteobacterial sequences, including in particular a twofold increase in Gammaproteobacteria. Chao1 and ACE diversity estimates showed that taxon richness within surface bacterial communities in shrimp-inhabited sediment was at least threefold higher than that in uninhabited sediment. This study shows that bioturbation can result in significant structural and compositional changes in sediment bacterial communities, increasing

  13. Mathematical Model of Gas Permeation Through PTFE Porous Membrane and the Effect of Membrane Pore Structure%PTFE多孔膜气体渗透数学模型和膜孔结构的影响

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张秀莉; 张卫东; 郝新敏; 张慧峰; 张泽廷; 张建春

    2003-01-01

    Membrane-based separation processes are new technology combined membrane separation with conven-tional separation. Hydrophobic porous membranes are often used in these processes. The structure of hydrophobicporous membrane has significant effect on mass transfer process. The permeabilities of five kinds of gas, He, N2,O2, CO2 and water vapor, across six polytetrafiuoroethylene(PTFE) flat membranes were tested experimentally.Results indicated that the greater the membrane mean pore size and the wider the pore size distribution are, thehigher the gas permeability. A gas permeation model, including the effects of membrane structure parameter and gasproperties, was established. A comprehensive characteristic parameter (including porosity, thickness and tortuosity)was found more effective to express the influence of membrane structure in gas permeation process. The predictedpermeation coefficients were in good agreement with experimental data.

  14. The effects of aspect ratio of inorganic fillers on the structure and property of composite ion-exchange membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaysom, Chalida; Moon, Seung-Hyeon; Ladewig, Bradley P; Lu, G Q Max; Wang, Lianzhou

    2011-11-15

    A new type of nanocomposite ion-exchange membranes containing sulfonated polyethersulfone (sPES) polymer matrix and sulfonated surface-functionalized mesoporous silica (SS) inorganic fillers was prepared. Various characterizations revealed that the addition of inorganic fillers with different shapes had a significant influence on the membrane structure. The mesoporous inorganic fillers not only created extra pore and water channels, assisting the ionic migration and improving conductivity of the composites, but also provided additional fixed charge groups upon surface modification. This allows the Donnan exclusion to work effectively and thus improve the selectivity of membranes. It was proved that the incorporation of appropriate amount of SS additive could significantly improve the conductivity (up to 20 folds) and permselectivity (about 14%) of the sPES membranes. The performance of these newly developed membranes in desalination by electrodialysis was comparable with that of a commercial membrane (FKE). PMID:21872877

  15. Retinoid- and sodium-butyrate– induced decrease in heat shock protein 70 membrane-positive tumor cells is associated with reduced sensitivity to natural killer cell lysis, growth delay, and altered growth morphology

    OpenAIRE

    Gehrmann, Mathias; Schönberger, Johann; Zilch, Tanja; Rossbacher, Lydia; Thonigs, Gerald; Eilles, Christoph; Multhoff, Gabriele

    2005-01-01

    Human tumors frequently present heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) on their cell membranes, whereas corresponding normal tissues fail to do so. Therefore, an Hsp70 membrane-positive phenotype provided a tumor-specific marker. Moreover, membrane-bound Hsp70 provides a target structure for the cytolytic attack mediated by natural killer (NK) cells. Vitamin A derivatives 13-cis retinoic acid (13-RA) and all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) and sodium-butyrate (SBU) are known for their redifferentiating cap...

  16. Different methods to alter surface morphology of high aspect ratio structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leber, M.; Shandhi, M. M. H.; Hogan, A.; Solzbacher, F.; Bhandari, R.; Negi, S.

    2016-03-01

    In various applications such as neural prostheses or solar cells, there is a need to alter the surface morphology of high aspect ratio structures so that the real surface area is greater than geometrical area. The change in surface morphology enhances the devices functionality. One of the applications of altering the surface morphology is of neural implants such as the Utah electrode array (UEA) that communicate with single neurons by charge injection induced stimulation or by recording electrical neural signals. For high selectivity between single cells of the nervous system, the electrode surface area is required to be as small as possible, while the impedance is required to be as low as possible for good signal to noise ratios (SNR) during neural recording. For stimulation, high charge injection and charge transfer capacities of the electrodes are required, which increase with the electrode surface. Traditionally, researchers have worked with either increasing the roughness of the existing metallization (platinum grey, black) or other materials such as Iridium Oxide and PEDOT. All of these previously investigated methods lead to more complicated metal deposition processes that are difficult to control and often have a critical impact on the mechanical properties of the metal films. Therefore, a modification of the surface underneath the electrode's coating will increase its surface area while maintaining the standard and well controlled metal deposition process. In this work, the surfaces of the silicon micro-needles were engineered by creating a defined microstructure on the electrodes surface using several methods such as laser ablation, focused ion beam, sputter etching, reactive ion etching (RIE) and deep reactive ion etching (DRIE). The surface modification processes were optimized for the high aspect ratio silicon structures of the UEA. The increase in real surface area while maintaining the geometrical surface area was verified using scanning electron

  17. Structural alterations in the male reproductive system of the freshwater crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus (Decapoda, Parastacidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bugnot, Ana B; López Greco, Laura S

    2009-10-01

    No diseases affecting reproductive performance have been previously reported in freshwater crayfishes. This study aims to characterise one reproductive system abnormality found in males of Cherax quadricarinatus reared in captivity. Fifteen adult males of C. quadricarinatus (70-110 g) were purchased from San Mateo S.A. farm (Entre Ríos, Argentina) each season during 2007. Macroscopic analysis showed that 26.6% of the animals sacrificed in winter presented brownish distal vasa deferentia. Histological analysis showed different levels of structural abnormality in the epithelium of the vasa deferentia and spermatophore. Granular and hyaline haemocytes were identified within the vasa deferentia but no significant differences were found in the sperm count between normal and brownish vas deferens. Histological analysis of the crayfishes sacrificed in autumn also showed these modifications in 22% of the animals, however, they did not show the brownish colour under macroscopic analysis. The similarities between the male reproductive system syndrome in shrimps and the abnormalities found in C. quadricarinatus are notable. An unspecific response to thermic stress is a possible explanation of these structural alterations. PMID:19682455

  18. Human hemoglobin structural and functional alterations and heme degradation upon interaction with benzene: A spectroscopic study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hosseinzadeh, Reza; Moosavi-Movahedi, Ali Akbar

    2016-03-01

    Here, the effect of benzene on hemoglobin structure, stability and heme prosthetic group integrity was studied by different methods. These included UV-vis absorption spectrophotometry, normal and synchronous fluorescence techniques, and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Our results indicated that benzene has high hemolytic potential even at low concentrations. The UV-vis spectroscopic results demonstrated that benzene altered both the globin chain and the heme prosthetic group of hemoglobin increasing met- and deoxy-Hb, while decreasing oxy-Hb. However, with increasing benzene the concentration of all species decreased due to heme destruction. The spectrophotometric results show that benzene has a high potential for penetrating the hydrophobic pocket of hemoglobin. These results were consistent with the molecular docking simulation results of benzene-hHb. Aggregation and thermal denaturation studies show that the increased benzene concentration induced hemoglobin aggregation with a decrease in stability, which is consistent with the DSC results. Conventional fluorescence spectroscopy revealed that the heme degradation species were produced in the presence of benzene. The results of constant wavelength synchronous fluorescence spectroscopy (CWSFS) indicated that at least five heme-degraded species were produced. Together, our results indicated that benzene has adverse effects on hemoglobin structure and function, and heme degradation.

  19. Faunal Drivers of Soil Flux Dynamics via Alterations in Crack Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeCarlo, Keita; Caylor, Kelly

    2016-04-01

    Organismal activity, in addition to its role in ecological feedbacks, has the potential to serve as instigators or enhancers of atmospheric and hydrologic processes via alterations in soil structural regimes. We investigated the biomechanical effect of faunal activity on soil carbon dynamics via changes in soil crack structure, focusing on three dryland soil systems: bioturbated, biocompacted and undisturbed soils. Carbon fluxes were characterized using a closed-system respiration chamber, with CO2 concentration differences measured using an infrared gas analyzer (IRGA). Results show that faunal influences play a divergent biomechanics role in bulk soil cracking: bioturbation induced by belowground fauna creates "surficial" (shallow, large, well-connected) networks relative to the "systematic" (deep, moderate, poorly connected) networks created by aboveground fauna. The latter also shows a "memory" of past wetting/drying events in the consolidated soil through a crack layering effect. These morphologies further drive differences in soil carbon flux: under dry conditions, bioturbated and control soils show a persistently high and low mean carbon flux, respectively, while biocompacted soils show a large diurnal trend, with daytime lows and nighttime highs comparable to the control and bioturbated soils, respectively. Overall fluxes under wet conditions are considerably higher, but also more variable, though higher mean fluxes are observed in the biocompacted and bioturbated soils. Our results suggest that the increased surface area in the bioturbated soils create enhanced but constant diffusive processes, whereas the increased thermal gradient in the biocompacted soils create novel convective processes that create high fluxes that are diurnal in nature.

  20. Fabrication variables affecting the structure and properties of supported carbon molecular sieve membranes for hydrogen separation

    KAUST Repository

    Briceño, Kelly

    2012-10-01

    A high molecular weight polyimide (Matrimid) was used as a precursor for fabricating supported carbon molecular sieve membranes without crack formation at 550-700°C pyrolysis temperature. A one-step polymer (polyimide) coating method as precursor of carbon layer was used without needing a prior modification of a TiO 2 macroporous support. The following fabrication variables were optimized and studied to determine their effect on the carbon structure: polymeric solution concentration, solvent extraction, heating rate and pyrolysis temperature. Two techniques (Thermogravimetric analysis and Raman spectroscopy) were used to determine these effects on final carbon structure. Likewise, the effect of the support was also reported as an additional and important variable in the design of supported carbon membranes. Atomic force microscopy and differential scanning calorimetry quantified the degree of influence. Pure gas permeation tests were performed using CH 4, CO, CO 2 and H 2. The presence of a molecular sieving mechanism was confirmed after defects were plugged with PDMS solution at 12wt%. Gas selectivities higher than Knudsen theoretical values were reached with membranes obtained over 650°C, showing as best values 4.46, 4.70 and 10.62 for H 2/N 2, H 2/CO and H 2/CH 4 ratio, respectively. Permeance values were over 9.82×10 -9mol/(m 2Pas)during pure hydrogen permeation tests. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

  1. Characterization of cake layer structure on the microfiltration membrane permeability by iron pre-coagulation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jin Wang; Siru Pan; Dongping Luo

    2013-01-01

    A cake layer is formed by coagulation aggregates under certain transmembrane pressure in the coagulation-microfiltration (MF) process.The characteristics of humic acid aggregates coagulated by different iron-based coagulants,such as charge,size,fractal dimension and compressibility,have an effect on the cake layer structure.At the optimum iron dose of 0.6 to 0.8 mmol/L for ferric chloride (FC) and polymer ferric sulfate (PFS) pre-coagulation,at the point of charge neutralization for near zero zeta potential,the aggregate particles produced possess the greatest size and highest fractal dimension,which contributes to the cake layer being most loose with high porosity and low compressibility.Thus the membrane filterability is better.At a low or high iron dose of FC and PFS,a high negative or positive zeta potential with high charge repulsion results in so many small aggregate particles and low fractal dimension that the cake layer is compact with low porosity and high compressibility.Therefore the membrane fouling is accelerated and MF permeability becomes worse.The variation of cake layer structure as measured by scanning electric microscopy corresponds with the fact that the smaller the coagulation flocs size and fractal dimension are,the lower the porosity and the tighter the cake layer conformation.This also explains the MF membrane flux variation visually and accurately.

  2. Multifaceted plasma membrane Ca(2+) pumps: From structure to intracellular Ca(2+) handling and cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Padányi, Rita; Pászty, Katalin; Hegedűs, Luca; Varga, Karolina; Papp, Béla; Penniston, John T; Enyedi, Ágnes

    2016-06-01

    Plasma membrane Ca(2+) ATPases (PMCAs) are intimately involved in the control of intracellular Ca(2+) concentration. They reduce Ca(2+) in the cytosol not only by direct ejection, but also by controlling the formation of inositol-1,4,5-trisphosphate and decreasing Ca(2+) release from the endoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) pool. In mammals four genes (PMCA1-4) are expressed, and alternative RNA splicing generates more than twenty variants. The variants differ in their regulatory characteristics. They localize into highly specialized membrane compartments and respond to the incoming Ca(2+) with distinct temporal resolution. The expression pattern of variants depends on cell type; a change in this pattern can result in perturbed Ca(2+) homeostasis and thus altered cell function. Indeed, PMCAs undergo remarkable changes in their expression pattern during tumorigenesis that might significantly contribute to the unbalanced Ca(2+) homeostasis of cancer cells. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Calcium and Cell Fate . Guest Editors: Jacques Haiech, Claus Heizmann, Joachim Krebs, Thierry Capiod and Olivier Mignen. PMID:26707182

  3. Single molecule probes of membrane structure: orientation of BODIPY probes in DPPC as a function of probe structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armendariz, Kevin P; Huckabay, Heath A; Livanec, Philip W; Dunn, Robert C

    2012-03-21

    Single molecule fluorescence measurements have recently been used to probe the orientation of fluorescent lipid analogs doped into lipid films at trace levels. Using defocused polarized total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy (PTIRF-M), these studies have shown that fluorophore orientation responds to changes in membrane surface pressure and composition, providing a molecular level marker of membrane structure. Here we extend those studies by characterizing the single molecule orientations of six related BODIPY probes doped into monolayers of DPPC. Langmuir-Blodgett monolayers transferred at various surface pressures are used to compare the response from fluorescent lipid analogs in which the location of the BODIPY probe is varied along the length of the acyl chain. For each BODIPY probe location along the chain, comparisons are made between analogs containing phosphocholine and smaller fatty acid headgroups. Together these studies show a general propensity of the BODIPY analogs to insert into membranes with the BODIPY probe aligned along the acyl chains or looped back to interact with the headgroups. For all BODIPY probes studied, a bimodal orientation distribution is observed which is sensitive to surface pressure, with the population of BODIPY probes aligned along the acyl chains increasing with elevated surface pressure. Trends in the single molecule orientations for the six analogs reveal a configuration where optimal placement of the BODIPY probe within the acyl chain maximizes its sensitivity to the surrounding membrane structure. These results are discussed in terms of balancing the effects of headgroup association with acyl chain length in designing the optimal placement of the BODIPY probe. PMID:22322157

  4. Structural Origins of Nitroxide Side Chain Dynamics on Membrane Protein [alpha]-Helical Sites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kroncke, Brett M.; Horanyi, Peter S.; Columbus, Linda (UV)

    2010-12-07

    Understanding the structure and dynamics of membrane proteins in their native, hydrophobic environment is important to understanding how these proteins function. EPR spectroscopy in combination with site-directed spin labeling (SDSL) can measure dynamics and structure of membrane proteins in their native lipid environment; however, until now the dynamics measured have been qualitative due to limited knowledge of the nitroxide spin label's intramolecular motion in the hydrophobic environment. Although several studies have elucidated the structural origins of EPR line shapes of water-soluble proteins, EPR spectra of nitroxide spin-labeled proteins in detergents or lipids have characteristic differences from their water-soluble counterparts, suggesting significant differences in the underlying molecular motion of the spin label between the two environments. To elucidate these differences, membrane-exposed {alpha}-helical sites of the leucine transporter, LeuT, from Aquifex aeolicus, were investigated using X-ray crystallography, mutational analysis, nitroxide side chain derivatives, and spectral simulations in order to obtain a motional model of the nitroxide. For each crystal structure, the nitroxide ring of a disulfide-linked spin label side chain (R1) is resolved and makes contacts with hydrophobic residues on the protein surface. The spin label at site I204 on LeuT makes a nontraditional hydrogen bond with the ortho-hydrogen on its nearest neighbor F208, whereas the spin label at site F177 makes multiple van der Waals contacts with a hydrophobic pocket formed with an adjacent helix. These results coupled with the spectral effect of mutating the i {+-} 3, 4 residues suggest that the spin label has a greater affinity for its local protein environment in the low dielectric than on a water-soluble protein surface. The simulations of the EPR spectra presented here suggest the spin label oscillates about the terminal bond nearest the ring while maintaining weak

  5. Porous thin film barrier layers from 2,3-dicarboxylic acid cellulose nanofibrils for membrane structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visanko, Miikka; Liimatainen, Henrikki; Sirviö, Juho Antti; Haapala, Antti; Sliz, Rafal; Niinimäki, Jouko; Hormi, Osmo

    2014-02-15

    To fabricate a strong hydrophilic barrier layer for ultrafiltration (UF) membranes, 2,3-dicarboxylic acid cellulose nanofibrils with high anionic surface charge density (1.2 mekv/g at pH 7) and a width of 22 ± 4 nm were used. A simple vacuum filtration method combined with a solvent exchange procedure resulted in a porous layer with a thickness of ∼ 0.85 μm. The fabricated membranes reached high rejection efficiencies (74-80%) when aqueous dextrans up to 35-45 kDa were filtrated to evaluate the molecular weight cut-offs (MWCO). A linear correlation between the barrier layer thickness and the flux rate was observed in all tested cases. Further optimization of the barrier layer thickness can lead to an even more effective structure. PMID:24507322

  6. Solution nuclear magnetic resonance structure of membrane-integral diacylglycerol kinase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Horn, Wade D; Kim, Hak-Jun; Ellis, Charles D; Hadziselimovic, Arina; Sulistijo, Endah S; Karra, Murthy D; Tian, Changlin; Sönnichsen, Frank D; Sanders, Charles R

    2009-06-26

    Escherichia coli diacylglycerol kinase (DAGK) represents a family of integral membrane enzymes that is unrelated to all other phosphotransferases. We have determined the three-dimensional structure of the DAGK homotrimer with the use of solution nuclear magnetic resonance. The third transmembrane helix from each subunit is domain-swapped with the first and second transmembrane segments from an adjacent subunit. Each of DAGK's three active sites resembles a portico. The cornice of the portico appears to be the determinant of DAGK's lipid substrate specificity and overhangs the site of phosphoryl transfer near the water-membrane interface. Mutations to cysteine that caused severe misfolding were located in or near the active site, indicating a high degree of overlap between sites responsible for folding and for catalysis. PMID:19556511

  7. Reconstitution of the membrane protein OmpF into biomimetic block copolymer–phospholipid hybrid membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bieligmeyer, Matthias; Artukovic, Franjo; Hirth, Thomas; Schiestel, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Summary Structure and function of many transmembrane proteins are affected by their environment. In this respect, reconstitution of a membrane protein into a biomimetic polymer membrane can alter its function. To overcome this problem we used membranes formed by poly(1,4-isoprene-block-ethylene oxide) block copolymers blended with 1,2-diphytanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine. By reconstituting the outer membrane protein OmpF from Escherichia coli into these membranes, we demonstrate functionality of this protein in biomimetic lipopolymer membranes, independent of the molecular weight of the block copolymers. At low voltages, the channel conductance of OmpF in 1 M KCl was around 2.3 nS. In line with these experiments, integration of OmpF was also revealed by impedance spectroscopy. Our results indicate that blending synthetic polymer membranes with phospholipids allows for the reconstitution of transmembrane proteins under preservation of protein function, independent of the membrane thickness. PMID:27547605

  8. X-ray structure, thermodynamics, elastic properties and MD simulations of cardiolipin/dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine mixed membranes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boscia, Alexander L.; Treece, Bradley W.; Mohammadyani, Dariush; Klein-Seetharaman, Judith; Braun, Anthony R.; Wassenaar, Tsjerk A.; Klösgen, Beate Maria; Tristram-Nagle, Stephanie

    2014-01-01

    Cardiolipins (CLs) are important biologically for their unique role in biomembranes that couple phosphorylation and electron transport like bacterial plasma membranes, chromatophores, chloroplasts and mitochondria. CLs are often tightly coupled to proteins involved in oxidative phosphorylation. The...... first step in understanding the interaction of CL with proteins is to obtain the pure CL structure, and the structure of mixtures of CL with other lipids. In this work we use a variety of techniques to characterize the fluid phase structure, material properties and thermodynamics of mixtures of...... dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC) with tetramyristoylcardiolipin (TMCL), both with 14-carbon chains, at several mole percentages. X-ray diffuse scattering was used to determine structure, including bilayer thickness and area/lipid, the bending modulus, KC, and SXray, a measure of chain orientational order. Our results...

  9. Proceedings of the users meeting on structure and phase transition of phospholipid membrane

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    On the occasion that the persons of three groups that have carried out the research on the structure and the phase transition of phospholipid membranes have carried out the experiment successively, the users meeting was held on November 1, 1993 at National Laboratory for High Energy Physics. Lectures were given on the LβI structure of DPPC/alcohol system, the self gathering and intermolecular cooperation phenomenon of glycero phospholipid, the phase transition of DEPE/water system, the structure of DMPA/polylysine, the development of X-ray television, the ripple structure of DMPC/cholesterol system and the simultaneous measurement of X-ray diffraction/DSC. To have the chance like this is very meaningful because sufficient discussion can be done among usually busy researchers at the synchrotron radiation experiment facility. (K.I.)

  10. Chromosomal breakpoints and structural alterations of the c-myc locus differ in endemic and sporadic forms of Burkitt lymphoma.

    OpenAIRE

    Pelicci, P.G.; Knowles, D M; Magrath, I; Dalla-Favera, R

    1986-01-01

    We have examined the position of the chromosomal breakpoint relative to the human c-myc gene (MYC) and the presence of other structural alterations of the same locus in 19 fresh samples of Burkitt lymphoma (BL) and 13 BL-derived cell lines. This panel includes the two pathogenetic forms of BL: the endemic (African-type) BL (eBL) and sporadic (American-type) BL (sBL). In all cases tested, including fresh samples and cell lines, structural alterations of the 5' portion of the gene were detected...

  11. Influence of commercially available polyimide and formation conditions on the performance and structure of asymmetric polyimide organic solvent nanofiltration membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Lopes, Mafalda Pessoa

    2009-01-01

    This work covers experimental and theoretical research related to the impact of the polymer structure of commercially available polyimide and polyetherimides as well as the formation conditions on the performance and structure of polyimide Organic Solvent Nanofiltration membranes. The influence in some membrane formation parameters such as polymer choice, solvent system composition, chemical crosslinking, solubility, humidity and coagulation bath temperature on the performance of PI membra...

  12. Magnetically controlled permeability membranes

    KAUST Repository

    Kosel, Jurgen

    2013-10-31

    A bioactive material delivery system can include a thermoresponsive polymer membrane and nanowires distributed within the thermoresponsive polymer membrane. Magnetic activation of a thermoresponsive polymer membrane can take place via altering the magnetization or dimensions of nanowires dispersed or ordered within the membrane matrix.

  13. Membrane interaction and secondary structure of de novo designed arginine-and tryptophan peptides with dual function

    KAUST Repository

    Rydberg, Hanna A.

    2012-10-01

    Cell-penetrating peptides and antimicrobial peptides are two classes of positively charged membrane active peptides with several properties in common. The challenge is to combine knowledge about the membrane interaction mechanisms and structural properties of the two classes to design peptides with membrane-specific actions, useful either as transporters of cargo or as antibacterial substances. Membrane active peptides are commonly rich in arginine and tryptophan. We have previously designed a series of arg/trp peptides and investigated how the position and number of tryptophans affect cellular uptake. Here we explore the antimicrobial properties and the interaction with lipid model membranes of these peptides, using minimal inhibitory concentrations assay (MIC), circular dichroism (CD) and linear dichroism (LD). The results show that the arg/trp peptides inhibit the growth of the two gram positive strains Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus pyogenes, with some individual variations depending on the position of the tryptophans. No inhibition of the gram negative strains Proteus mirabilis or Pseudomonas aeruginosa was noticed. CD indicated that when bound to lipid vesicles one of the peptides forms an α-helical like structure, whereas the other five exhibited rather random coiled structures. LD indicated that all six peptides were somehow aligned parallel with the membrane surface. Our results do not reveal any obvious connection between membrane interaction and antimicrobial effect for the studied peptides. By contrast cell-penetrating properties can be coupled to both the secondary structure and the degree of order of the peptides. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.

  14. Modulating immunogenic properties of HIV-1 gp41 membrane-proximal external region by destabilizing six-helix bundle structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Saikat; Shi, Heliang; Habte, Habtom H; Qin, Yali; Cho, Michael W

    2016-03-01

    The C-terminal alpha-helix of gp41 membrane-proximal external region (MPER; (671)NWFDITNWLWYIK(683)) encompassing 4E10/10E8 epitopes is an attractive target for HIV-1 vaccine development. We previously reported that gp41-HR1-54Q, a trimeric protein comprised of the MPER in the context of a stable six-helix bundle (6HB), induced strong immune responses against the helix, but antibodies were directed primarily against the non-neutralizing face of the helix. To better target 4E10/10E8 epitopes, we generated four putative fusion intermediates by introducing double point mutations or deletions in the heptad repeat region 1 (HR1) that destabilize 6HB in varying degrees. One variant, HR1-∆10-54K, elicited antibodies in rabbits that targeted W672, I675 and L679, which are critical for 4E10/10E8 recognition. Overall, the results demonstrated that altering structural parameters of 6HB can influence immunogenic properties of the MPER and antibody targeting. Further exploration of this strategy could allow development of immunogens that could lead to induction of 4E10/10E8-like antibodies. PMID:26803471

  15. Clarifying the chemical state of additives in membranes for polymer electrolyte fuel cells by X-ray absorption fine structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanuma, Toshihiro; Itoh, Takanori

    2016-02-01

    Cerium and manganese compounds are used in the membrane for polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs) as radical scavengers to mitigate chemical degradation of the membrane. The chemical states of cerium and manganese in the membrane were investigated using a fluorescence X-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS) technique. Membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs) were subjected to open circuit voltage (OCV) condition, under which hydroxyl radicals attack the membrane; a shift in absorption energy in X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES) spectra was compared between Ce- and Mn-containing membranes before and after OCV testing. In the case of the Ce-containing MEA, there was no significant difference in XANES spectra before and after OCV testing, whereas in the case of the Mn-containing MEA, there was an obvious shift in XANES absorption energy after OCV testing, indicating that Mn atoms with higher valence state than 2+ exist in the membrane after OCV testing. This can be attributed to the difference in the rate of reduction; the reaction of Ce4+ with ·OOH is much faster than that of Mn3+ with ·OOH, leaving some of the Mn atoms with higher valence state. It was confirmed that cerium and manganese redox couples reduced the attack from radicals, mitigating membrane degradation.

  16. The influence of oscillating electromagnetic fields on membrane structure and function: Synthetic liposome and natural membrane bilayer systems with direct application to the controlled delivery of chemical agents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Investigations have been conducted to determine if an imposed electromagnetic field can influence membrane transport, and ion and drug permeability in both synthetic and natural cell membrane systems. Microwave fields enhance accumulation of sodium in the lymphocyte and induce protein shedding at Tc. Microwaves also trigger membrane permeability of liposome systems under specific field exposure conditions. Sensitivity varies in a defined way in bilayers displaying a membrane structural phase transition temperature, Tc; maximal release was observed at or near Tc. Significantly, liposome systems without a membrane phase transition were also found to experience permeability increases but, in contrast, this response was temperature independent. The above results indicate that field-enhanced drug release occurs in liposome vesicles that possess a Tc as well as non-Tc liposomes. Additional studies extend non-Tc liposome responses to the in vivo case in which microwaves trigger Gentamicin release from a liposome ''depot'' placed subcutaneously in the rat hind leg. In addition, evidence is provided that cell surface sequestered liposomes can be triggered by microwave fields to release drugs directly into target cells. 24 refs., 6 figs

  17. Exercise challenge in Gulf War Illness reveals two subgroups with altered brain structure and function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rakib U Rayhan

    Full Text Available Nearly 30% of the approximately 700,000 military personnel who served in Operation Desert Storm (1990-1991 have developed Gulf War Illness, a condition that presents with symptoms such as cognitive impairment, autonomic dysfunction, debilitating fatigue and chronic widespread pain that implicate the central nervous system. A hallmark complaint of subjects with Gulf War Illness is post-exertional malaise; defined as an exacerbation of symptoms following physical and/or mental effort. To study the causal relationship between exercise, the brain, and changes in symptoms, 28 Gulf War veterans and 10 controls completed an fMRI scan before and after two exercise stress tests to investigate serial changes in pain, autonomic function, and working memory. Exercise induced two clinical Gulf War Illness subgroups. One subgroup presented with orthostatic tachycardia (n = 10. This phenotype correlated with brainstem atrophy, baseline working memory compensation in the cerebellar vermis, and subsequent loss of compensation after exercise. The other subgroup developed exercise induced hyperalgesia (n = 18 that was associated with cortical atrophy and baseline working memory compensation in the basal ganglia. Alterations in cognition, brain structure, and symptoms were absent in controls. Our novel findings may provide an understanding of the relationship between the brain and post-exertional malaise in Gulf War Illness.

  18. Structure and functions of water-membrane interfaces and their role in proto-biological evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, A.; Wilson, M.; Macelroy, R. D.

    1991-01-01

    Among the most important developments in proto-biological evolution was the emergence of membrane-like structures. These are formed by spontaneous association of relatively simple amphiphilic molecules that would have been readily available in the primordial environment. The resulting interfacial regions between water and nonpolar interior of the membrane have several properties which made them uniquely suitable for promoting subsequent evolution. They can (1) selectively attract organic material and mediate its transport, (2) serve as simple catalysts for chemical reactions, and (3) promote the formation of trans-membrane electrical and chemical gradients which could provide energy sources for proto-cells. Understanding the structure of interfaces, their interactions with organic molecules and molecular mechanisms of their functions is an essential step to understanding proto-biological evolution. In our computer simulation studies, we showed that the structure of water at interfaces with nonpolar media is significantly different from that in the bulk. In particular, the average surface dipole density points from the vapor to the liquid. As a result, negative ions can approach the interface more easily than positive ions. Amphiphilic molecules composed of hydrocarbon conjugated rings and polar substituents (e.g., phenol) assume at the interface rigid orientations in which polar groups are buried in water while hydrocarbon parts are located in the nonpolar environment. These orientational differences are of special interest in connection with the ability of some of these molecules to efficiently absorb photons. Flexible molecules with polar substituents often adopt at interfaces conformations different from those in the bulk aquaeous solution and in the gas phase. As a result, in many instances both specificity and kinetics of chemical reactions in which these molecules can participate is modified by the presence of surfaces. Of special interest is the mechanism by

  19. The structural role of cholesterol in cell membranes: from condensed bilayers to lipid rafts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Martin R; Regen, Steven L

    2014-12-16

    CONSPECTUS: Defining the two-dimensional structure of cell membranes represents one of the most daunting challenges currently facing chemists, biochemists, and biophysicists. In particular, the time-averaged lateral organization of the lipids and proteins that make up these natural enclosures has yet to be established. As the classic Singer-Nicolson model of cell membranes has evolved over the past 40 years, special attention has focused on the structural role played by cholesterol, a key component that represents ca. 30% of the total lipids that are present. Despite extensive studies with model membranes, two fundamental issues have remained a mystery: (i) the mechanism by which cholesterol condenses low-melting lipids by uncoiling their acyl chains and (ii) the thermodynamics of the interaction between cholesterol and high- and low-melting lipids. The latter bears directly on one of the most popular notions in modern cell biology, that is, the lipid raft hypothesis, whereby cholesterol is thought to combine with high-melting lipids to form "lipid rafts" that float in a "sea" of low-melting lipids. In this Account, we first describe a chemical approach that we have developed in our laboratories that has allowed us to quantify the interactions between exchangeable mimics of cholesterol and low- and high-melting lipids in model membranes. In essence, this "nearest-neighbor recognition" (NNR) method involves the synthesis of dimeric forms of these lipids that contain a disulfide moiety as a linker. By means of thiolate-disulfide interchange reactions, equilibrium mixtures of dimers are then formed. These exchange reactions are initiated either by adding dithiothreitol to a liposomal dispersion to generate a small amount of thiol monomer or by including a small amount of thiol monomer in the liposomes at pH 5.0 and then raising the pH to 7.4. We then show how such NNR measurements have allowed us to distinguish between two very different mechanisms that have been

  20. Progressive alterations of central nervous system structure and function are caused by charged particle radiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, G. A.; Cns Nscor Team

    A new NASA-sponsored program project (NSCOR) has been organized to conduct the first comprehensive investigation of the response of a mammalian brain structure (mouse hippocampus) to charged-particle radiation. The NSCOR collaboration has three main goals. The first goal is to quantify the time- and dose-dependent changes in cellular composition and architecture. By using stereology on preserved brains, subsets of cells (neurons, glia, endothelia and stem cells) will be quantified out to 2 years after irradiation with accelerated protons and iron ions. To further characterize changes in vasculature architecture a polymer infusion technique will be used to produce a three-dimensional vasculature cast that then will be mapped by x-ray tomography to determine topological changes, and microscopic infarcts associated with amyloid protein deposits. The 2nd goal is to quantify hippocampal function(s). The primary measurement of function will be extracellular electrical recordings from hippocampal ``brain slices'' that reflect underlying functions such as connectivity, action potential generation & conduction, and neurotransmitter formation, secretion, and uptake. Individual nerve membrane properties will be assessed by ``patch clamp'' recordings. Two non-invasive methods will evaluate brain function and the evolution of changes with time. Electroencephalograms will map macroscopic spontaneous electrical activity while two state-of-the-art MRI magnetization sequences will visualize and quantify local oxygen utilization and white matter fiber tracts structural integrity. To quantify the brains' overall performance under stress, animals will receive a systemic shock mediated by the immune system in the form of a reaction to lipopolysaccharide. A second strategy will employ the APP23 transgenic mouse that develops the pathological changes associated with Alzheimer's disease. Measurements of irradiated mice will determine whether radiation exposure affects the latency and

  1. Exposure of soil microbial communities to chromium and arsenic alters their diversity and structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cody S Sheik

    Full Text Available Extensive use of chromium (Cr and arsenic (As based preservatives from the leather tanning industry in Pakistan has had a deleterious effect on the soils surrounding production facilities. Bacteria have been shown to be an active component in the geochemical cycling of both Cr and As, but it is unknown how these compounds affect microbial community composition or the prevalence and form of metal resistance. Therefore, we sought to understand the effects that long-term exposure to As and Cr had on the diversity and structure of soil microbial communities. Soils from three spatially isolated tanning facilities in the Punjab province of Pakistan were analyzed. The structure, diversity and abundance of microbial 16S rRNA genes were highly influenced by the concentration and presence of hexavalent chromium (Cr (VI and arsenic. When compared to control soils, contaminated soils were dominated by Proteobacteria while Actinobacteria and Acidobacteria (which are generally abundant in pristine soils were minor components of the bacterial community. Shifts in community composition were significant and revealed that Cr (VI-containing soils were more similar to each other than to As contaminated soils lacking Cr (VI. Diversity of the arsenic resistance genes, arsB and ACR3 were also determined. Results showed that ACR3 becomes less diverse as arsenic concentrations increase with a single OTU dominating at the highest concentration. Chronic exposure to either Cr or As not only alters the composition of the soil bacterial community in general, but affects the arsenic resistant individuals in different ways.

  2. Exposure of soil microbial communities to chromium and arsenic alters their diversity and structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheik, Cody S; Mitchell, Tyler W; Rizvi, Fariha Z; Rehman, Yasir; Faisal, Muhammad; Hasnain, Shahida; McInerney, Michael J; Krumholz, Lee R

    2012-01-01

    Extensive use of chromium (Cr) and arsenic (As) based preservatives from the leather tanning industry in Pakistan has had a deleterious effect on the soils surrounding production facilities. Bacteria have been shown to be an active component in the geochemical cycling of both Cr and As, but it is unknown how these compounds affect microbial community composition or the prevalence and form of metal resistance. Therefore, we sought to understand the effects that long-term exposure to As and Cr had on the diversity and structure of soil microbial communities. Soils from three spatially isolated tanning facilities in the Punjab province of Pakistan were analyzed. The structure, diversity and abundance of microbial 16S rRNA genes were highly influenced by the concentration and presence of hexavalent chromium (Cr (VI)) and arsenic. When compared to control soils, contaminated soils were dominated by Proteobacteria while Actinobacteria and Acidobacteria (which are generally abundant in pristine soils) were minor components of the bacterial community. Shifts in community composition were significant and revealed that Cr (VI)-containing soils were more similar to each other than to As contaminated soils lacking Cr (VI). Diversity of the arsenic resistance genes, arsB and ACR3 were also determined. Results showed that ACR3 becomes less diverse as arsenic concentrations increase with a single OTU dominating at the highest concentration. Chronic exposure to either Cr or As not only alters the composition of the soil bacterial community in general, but affects the arsenic resistant individuals in different ways. PMID:22768219

  3. Crystal structure of MraY, an essential membrane enzyme for bacterial cell wall synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Ben C; Zhao, Jinshi; Gillespie, Robert A; Kwon, Do-Yeon; Guan, Ziqiang; Hong, Jiyong; Zhou, Pei; Lee, Seok-Yong

    2013-08-30

    MraY (phospho-MurNAc-pentapeptide translocase) is an integral membrane enzyme that catalyzes an essential step of bacterial cell wall biosynthesis: the transfer of the peptidoglycan precursor phospho-MurNAc-pentapeptide to the lipid carrier undecaprenyl phosphate. MraY has long been considered a promising target for the development of antibiotics, but the lack of a structure has hindered mechanistic understanding of this critical enzyme and the enzyme superfamily in general. The superfamily includes enzymes involved in bacterial lipopolysaccharide/teichoic acid formation and eukaryotic N-linked glycosylation, modifications that are central in many biological processes. We present the crystal structure of MraY from Aquifex aeolicus (MraYAA) at 3.3 Å resolution, which allows us to visualize the overall architecture, locate Mg(2+) within the active site, and provide a structural basis of catalysis for this class of enzyme. PMID:23990562

  4. Concept-Development of a Structure Supported Membrane for Deployable Space Applications - From Nature to Manufacture and Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zander, Martin; Belvin, W. K.

    2012-01-01

    Current space applications of membrane structures include large area solar power arrays, solar sails, antennas, and numerous other large aperture devices like the solar shades of the new James Webb Space Telescope. These expandable structural systems, deployed in-orbit to achieve the desired geometry, are used to collect, reflect and/or transmit electromagnetic radiation. This work, a feasibility study supporting a diploma thesis, describes the systematic process for developing a biologically inspired concept for a structure supported (integrated) membrane, that features a rip stop principle, makes self-deployment possible and is part of an ultra-light weight space application. Novel manufacturing of membrane prototypes and test results are presented for the rip-stop concepts. Test data showed that the new membrane concept has a higher tear resistance than neat film of equivalent mass.

  5. On the vein-stiffening membrane structure of a dragonfly hind wing

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhong-xue LI; Wei SHEN; Gen-shu TONG; Jia-meng TIAN; Loc VU-QUOC

    2009-01-01

    Aiming at exploring the excellent structural performance of the vein-stiffening membrane structure of dragonfly hind wings, we analyzed two planar computational models and three 3D computational models with cambered corrugation based on the finite element method. It is shown that the vein size in different zones is proportional to the magnitude of the vein internal force when the wing structure is subjected to uniform out-of-plane transverse loading. The membrane contributes little to the flexural stiffness of the planar wing models, while exerting an immense impact upon the stiffness of the 3D wing models with cambered corrugation. If a lumped mass of 10% of the wing is fixed on the leading edge close to the wing tip, the wing fundamental fre-quency decreases by 10.7%~13.2%; ifa lumped mass is connected to the wing via multiple springs, the wing fundamental fre-quency decreases by 16.0%~18.0%. Such decrease in fundamental frequency explains the special function of the wing pterostigma in alleviating the wing quivering effect. These particular features of dragonfly wings can be mimicked in the design of new-style reticulately stiffening thin-walled roof systems and flapping wings in novel intelligent aerial vehicles.

  6. Solution structure of detergent micelles at conditions relevant to membrane protein crystallization.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Littrell, K.; Thiyagarajan, P.; Tiede, D.; Urban, V.

    1999-07-02

    In this study small angle neutron scattering was used to characterize the formation of micelles in aqueous solutions of the detergents DMG and SPC as a function of detergent concentration and ionic strength of the solvent. The effects on the micelle structure of the additives glycerol and PEG, alone as well as in combination typical for actual membrane protein crystallization, were also explored. This research suggests that the micelles are cigar-like in form at the concentrations studied. The size of the micelles was observed to increase with increasing ionic strength but decrease with the addition of glycerol or PEG.

  7. Loss of the Arabidopsis thaliana P4-ATPases ALA6 and ALA7 Impairs Pollen Fitness and Alters the Pollen Tube Plasma Membrane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen C McDowell

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Members of the P4 subfamily of P-type ATPases are thought to create and maintain lipid asymmetry in biological membranes by flipping specific lipids between membrane leaflets. In Arabidopsis, 7 of the 12 Aminophospholipid ATPase (ALA family members are expressed in pollen. Here we show that double knockout of ALA6 and ALA7 (ala6/7 results in siliques with a ~2-fold reduction in seed set with a high frequency of empty seed positions near the bottom. Seed set was reduced to near zero when plants were grown under a hot/cold temperature stress. Reciprocal crosses indicate that the ala6/7 reproductive deficiencies are due to a defect related to pollen transmission. In-vitro growth assays provide evidence that that ala6/7 pollen tubes are short and slow, with ~2-fold reductions in both maximal growth rate and overall length relative to wild-type. Outcrosses show that when ala6/7 pollen are in competition with wild-type pollen, they have a near 0% success rate in fertilizing ovules near the bottom of the pistil, consistent with ala6/7 pollen having short and slow growth defects. The ala6/7 phenotypes were rescued by the expression of either an ALA6-YFP or GFP-ALA6 fusion protein, which showed localization to both the plasma membrane and highly-mobile endomembrane structures. A mass spectrometry analysis of mature pollen grains revealed significant differences between ala6/7 and wild-type, both in the relative abundance of lipid classes and in the average number of double bonds present in acyl side chains. A change in the properties of the ala6/7 plasma membrane was also indicated by a ~10-fold reduction of labeling by lipophilic FM-dyes relative to wild-type. Together, these results indicate that ALA6 and ALA7 provide redundant activities that function to directly or indirectly change the distribution and abundance lipids in pollen, and support a model in which ALA6 and ALA7 are critical for pollen fitness under normal and temperature-stress conditions.

  8. Thinking in Terms of Structure-Activity-Relationships (T-SAR: A Tool to Better Understand Nanofiltration Membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Stolte

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available A frontier to be conquered in the field of membrane technology is related to the very limited scientific base for the rational and task-specific design of membranes. This is especially true for nanofiltration membranes with properties that are based on several solute-membrane interaction mechanisms. “Thinking in terms of Structure-Activity-Relationships” (T-SAR is a methodology which applies a systematic analysis of a chemical entity based on its structural formula. However, the analysis become more complex with increasing size of the molecules considered. In this study, T-SAR was combined with classical membrane characterization methods, resulting in a new methodology which allowed us not only to explain membrane characteristics, but also provides evidence for the importance of the chemical structure for separation performance. We demonstrate an application of the combined approach and its potential to discover stereochemistry, molecular interaction potentials, and reactivity of two FilmTec nanofiltration membranes (NF-90 and NF-270. Based on these results, it was possible to predict both properties and performance in the recovery of hydrophobic ionic liquids from aqueous solution.

  9. Influence of myelin proteins on the structure and dynamics of a model membrane with emphasis on the low temperature regime

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knoll, W. [University Joseph Fourier, UFR PhiTEM, Grenoble (France); Institut Laue–Langevin, Grenoble (France); Peters, J. [University Joseph Fourier, UFR PhiTEM, Grenoble (France); Institut Laue–Langevin, Grenoble (France); Institut de Biologie Structurale, Grenoble (France); Kursula, P. [University of Oulu, Oulu (Finland); CSSB–HZI, DESY, Hamburg (Germany); Gerelli, Y. [Institut Laue–Langevin, Grenoble (France); Natali, F., E-mail: natali@ill.fr [Institut Laue–Langevin, Grenoble (France); CNR–IOM–OGG, c/o Institut Laue–Langevin, Grenoble (France)

    2014-11-28

    Myelin is an insulating, multi-lamellar membrane structure wrapped around selected nerve axons. Increasing the speed of nerve impulses, it is crucial for the proper functioning of the vertebrate nervous system. Human neurodegenerative diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, are linked to damage to the myelin sheath through demyelination. Myelin exhibits a well defined subset of myelin-specific proteins, whose influence on membrane dynamics, i.e., myelin flexibility and stability, has not yet been explored in detail. In a first paper [W. Knoll, J. Peters, P. Kursula, Y. Gerelli, J. Ollivier, B. Demé, M. Telling, E. Kemner, and F. Natali, Soft Matter 10, 519 (2014)] we were able to spotlight, through neutron scattering experiments, the role of peripheral nervous system myelin proteins on membrane stability at room temperature. In particular, the myelin basic protein and peripheral myelin protein 2 were found to synergistically influence the membrane structure while keeping almost unchanged the membrane mobility. Further insight is provided by this work, in which we particularly address the investigation of the membrane flexibility in the low temperature regime. We evidence a different behavior suggesting that the proton dynamics is reduced by the addition of the myelin basic protein accompanied by negligible membrane structural changes. Moreover, we address the importance of correct sample preparation and characterization for the success of the experiment and for the reliability of the obtained results.

  10. Influence of myelin proteins on the structure and dynamics of a model membrane with emphasis on the low temperature regime

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Myelin is an insulating, multi-lamellar membrane structure wrapped around selected nerve axons. Increasing the speed of nerve impulses, it is crucial for the proper functioning of the vertebrate nervous system. Human neurodegenerative diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, are linked to damage to the myelin sheath through demyelination. Myelin exhibits a well defined subset of myelin-specific proteins, whose influence on membrane dynamics, i.e., myelin flexibility and stability, has not yet been explored in detail. In a first paper [W. Knoll, J. Peters, P. Kursula, Y. Gerelli, J. Ollivier, B. Demé, M. Telling, E. Kemner, and F. Natali, Soft Matter 10, 519 (2014)] we were able to spotlight, through neutron scattering experiments, the role of peripheral nervous system myelin proteins on membrane stability at room temperature. In particular, the myelin basic protein and peripheral myelin protein 2 were found to synergistically influence the membrane structure while keeping almost unchanged the membrane mobility. Further insight is provided by this work, in which we particularly address the investigation of the membrane flexibility in the low temperature regime. We evidence a different behavior suggesting that the proton dynamics is reduced by the addition of the myelin basic protein accompanied by negligible membrane structural changes. Moreover, we address the importance of correct sample preparation and characterization for the success of the experiment and for the reliability of the obtained results

  11. Quantitative analysis of the nanoscale intra-nuclear structural alterations in hippocampal cells in chronic alcoholism via transmission electron microscopy study

    CERN Document Server

    Sahay, Peeyush; Ghimire, Hemendra M; Almabadi, Huda; Tripathi, Vibha; Mohanty, Samarendra K; Rao, Radhakrishna; Pradhan, Prabhakar

    2015-01-01

    Chronic alcoholism is known to alter morphology of hippocampal, an important region of cognitive function in the brain. We performed quantification of nanoscale structural alterations in nuclei of hippocampal neuron cells due to chronic alcoholism, in mice model. Transmission electron microscopy images of the neuron cells were obtained and the degrees of structural alteration, in terms of mass density fluctuations, were determined using the recently developed light localization analysis technique. The results, obtained at the length scales ranging from 33 to 195 nm, show that the 4-week alcohol fed mice have higher degree of structural alteration in comparison to the control mice. The degree of structural alterations starts becoming significantly distinguishable around 100 nm sample length, which is the typical length scale of the building blocks of cells, such as DNA, RNA, etc. Different degrees of structural alterations at such length scales suggest possible structural rearrangement of chromatin inside the ...

  12. The elliptocyte: a study of the relationship between cell shape and membrane structure using the camelid erythrocyte as a model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omorphos, S A; Hawkey, C M; Rice-Evans, C

    1989-01-01

    1. The elliptocytic shape of the camelid erythrocyte is very stable and has a high resistance to modification by drugs and treatment which alter the shape of the discocytic erythrocytes of scimitar-horned oryx and man. 2. Differences in the erythrocyte membrane proteins have been found which indicate that proteins play an important role in stabilisation of the camelid elliptocyte. 3. The organisation of the cytoskeletal network in camelid elliptocytes differs from that established for human discocytes. PMID:2605918

  13. Impact of soda-lime borosilicate glass composition on water penetration and water structure at the first time of alteration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this study, the impact of soda-lime borosilicate glass composition and particularly the effect of charge compensators such Ca and Na and, of network formers such Si and Zr, on water penetration and water structure at the first time of alteration were investigated. Two non-destructive techniques were combined: the Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy in attenuated total reflection geometry to precise the predominant alteration mechanisms and assess the water structure in altered zone and the grazing incidence X-ray reflectometry to determine the thickness of the altered glass zone allowing to calculate the water diffusion coefficients through the glasses. The results of glass alteration at pH = 3 and 30 degrees C have shown that hydrolysis was the predominant mechanism after few seconds for glass having a high amount of non-binding oxygen. For the other glasses, which for the diffusion was the limiting reaction, the calculated water diffusion coefficients were comprised between 10-21 and 10-19 m2.s-1 and vary as a function of glass composition. An activation energy of 76.9 kJ.mol-1 was calculated and appears to be higher than inert gas diffusion through the glass highlighting that water molecules strongly interact with the glass matrix. (authors)

  14. Backbone structure of Yersinia pestis Ail determined in micelles by NMR-restrained simulated annealing with implicit membrane solvation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marassi, Francesca M., E-mail: fmarassi@sbmri.org; Ding, Yi [Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (United States); Schwieters, Charles D. [National Institutes of Health, Division of Computational Bioscience, Center for Information Technology (United States); Tian, Ye; Yao, Yong [Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (United States)

    2015-09-15

    The outer membrane protein Ail (attachment invasion locus) is a virulence factor of Yersinia pestis that mediates cell invasion, cell attachment and complement resistance. Here we describe its three-dimensional backbone structure determined in decyl-phosphocholine (DePC) micelles by NMR spectroscopy. The NMR structure was calculated using the membrane function of the implicit solvation potential, eefxPot, which we have developed to facilitate NMR structure calculations in a physically realistic environment. We show that the eefxPot force field guides the protein towards its native fold. The resulting structures provide information about the membrane-embedded global position of Ail, and have higher accuracy, higher precision and improved conformational properties, compared to the structures calculated with the standard repulsive potential.

  15. Backbone structure of Yersinia pestis Ail determined in micelles by NMR-restrained simulated annealing with implicit membrane solvation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The outer membrane protein Ail (attachment invasion locus) is a virulence factor of Yersinia pestis that mediates cell invasion, cell attachment and complement resistance. Here we describe its three-dimensional backbone structure determined in decyl-phosphocholine (DePC) micelles by NMR spectroscopy. The NMR structure was calculated using the membrane function of the implicit solvation potential, eefxPot, which we have developed to facilitate NMR structure calculations in a physically realistic environment. We show that the eefxPot force field guides the protein towards its native fold. The resulting structures provide information about the membrane-embedded global position of Ail, and have higher accuracy, higher precision and improved conformational properties, compared to the structures calculated with the standard repulsive potential

  16. pH-dependent formation of membranous cytoplasmic body-like structure of ganglioside G(M1)/bis(monoacylglycero)phosphate mixed membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayakawa, Tomohiro; Makino, Asami; Murate, Motohide; Sugimoto, Ichiro; Hashimoto, Yasuhiro; Takahashi, Hiroshi; Ito, Kazuki; Fujisawa, Tetsuro; Matsuo, Hirotami; Kobayashi, Toshihide

    2007-01-01

    Membrane structures of the mixtures of ganglioside G(M1) and endosome specific lipid, bis (monoacylglycero) phosphate (BMP, also known as lysobisphosphatidic acid) were examined at various pH conditions by freeze-fracture electron microscopy and small-angle x-ray scattering. At pH 8.5-6.5, a G(M1)/BMP (1:1 mol/mol) mixture formed small vesicular aggregates, whereas the mixture formed closely packed lamellar structures under acidic conditions (pH 5.5, 4.6) with the lamellar repeat distance of 8.06 nm. Since BMP alone exhibits a diffuse lamellar structure at a broad range of pH values and G(M1) forms a micelle, the results indicate that both G(M1) and BMP are required to produce closely stacked multilamellar vesicles. These vesicles resemble membranous cytoplasmic bodies in cells derived from patients suffering from G(M1) gangliosidosis. Similar to G(M1) gangliosidosis, cholesterol was trapped in BMP vesicles in G(M1)- and in a low pH-dependent manner. Studies employing different gangliosides and a G(M1) analog suggest the importance of sugar chains and a sialic acid of G(M1) in the pH-dependent structural change of G(M1)/BMP membranes. PMID:17056735

  17. Characterization of 4-HNE modified L-FABP reveals alterations in structural and functional dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca L Smathers

    Full Text Available 4-Hydroxynonenal (4-HNE is a reactive α,β-unsaturated aldehyde produced during oxidative stress and subsequent lipid peroxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids. The reactivity of 4-HNE towards DNA and nucleophilic amino acids has been well established. In this report, using proteomic approaches, liver fatty acid-binding protein (L-FABP is identified as a target for modification by 4-HNE. This lipid binding protein mediates the uptake and trafficking of hydrophobic ligands throughout cellular compartments. Ethanol caused a significant decrease in L-FABP protein (P<0.001 and mRNA (P<0.05, as well as increased poly-ubiquitinated L-FABP (P<0.001. Sites of 4-HNE adduction on mouse recombinant L-FABP were mapped using MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry on apo (Lys57 and Cys69 and holo (Lys6, Lys31, His43, Lys46, Lys57 and Cys69 L-FABP. The impact of 4-HNE adduction was found to occur in a concentration-dependent manner; affinity for the fluorescent ligand, anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonic acid, was reduced from 0.347 µM to Kd(1 = 0.395 µM and Kd(2 = 34.20 µM. Saturation analyses revealed that capacity for ligand is reduced by approximately 50% when adducted by 4-HNE. Thermal stability curves of apo L-FABP was also found to be significantly affected by 4-HNE adduction (ΔTm = 5.44°C, P<0.01. Computational-based molecular modeling simulations of adducted protein revealed minor conformational changes in global protein structure of apo and holo L-FABP while more apparent differences were observed within the internal binding pocket, revealing reduced area and structural integrity. New solvent accessible portals on the periphery of the protein were observed following 4-HNE modification in both the apo and holo state, suggesting an adaptive response to carbonylation. The results from this study detail the dynamic process associated with L-FABP modification by 4-HNE and provide insight as to how alterations in structural integrity and ligand

  18. Isotropic 3D Nuclear Morphometry of Normal, Fibrocystic and Malignant Breast Epithelial Cells Reveals New Structural Alterations

    OpenAIRE

    Nandakumar, Vivek; Kelbauskas, Laimonas; Hernandez, Kathryn F.; Lintecum, Kelly M.; Senechal, Patti; Bussey, Kimberly J.; Davies, Paul C.W.; Johnson, Roger H.; Meldrum, Deirdre R.

    2012-01-01

    Background Grading schemes for breast cancer diagnosis are predominantly based on pathologists' qualitative assessment of altered nuclear structure from 2D brightfield microscopy images. However, cells are three-dimensional (3D) objects with features that are inherently 3D and thus poorly characterized in 2D. Our goal is to quantitatively characterize nuclear structure in 3D, assess its variation with malignancy, and investigate whether such variation correlates with standard nuclear grading ...

  19. Comparative studies of the structural and alteration controls on gold mineralization in the Wa-Lawra region, NW Ghana.

    OpenAIRE

    Amponsah, Prince Ofori

    2016-01-01

    The objective of this thesis was to perform a detailed structural, mineralization and associated alteration studies of three gold deposits located in northwest Ghana, on the eastern margin of the West African Craton. Thus, the Kunche and Bepkong deposits, located in the Wa-Lawra belt and Julie deposit located in the Julie belt. These three deposits have multiple differences in terms of geological, structural, tectonic and geochemical characteristics but gold mineralization in these deposits a...

  20. Combinations of physiologic estrogens with xenoestrogens alter calcium and kinase responses, prolactin release, and membrane estrogen receptor trafficking in rat pituitary cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Watson Cheryl S

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Xenoestrogens such as alkylphenols and the structurally related plastic byproduct bisphenol A have recently been shown to act potently via nongenomic signaling pathways and the membrane version of estrogen receptor-α. Though the responses to these compounds are typically measured individually, they usually contaminate organisms that already have endogenous estrogens present. Therefore, we used quantitative medium-throughput screening assays to measure the effects of physiologic estrogens in combination with these xenoestrogens. Methods We studied the effects of low concentrations of endogenous estrogens (estradiol, estriol, and estrone at 10 pM (representing pre-development levels, and 1 nM (representing higher cycle-dependent and pregnancy levels in combinations with the same levels of xenoestrogens in GH3/B6/F10 pituitary cells. These levels of xenoestrogens represent extremely low contamination levels. We monitored calcium entry into cells using Fura-2 fluorescence imaging of single cells. Prolactin release was measured by radio-immunoassay. Extracellular-regulated kinase (1 and 2 phospho-activations and the levels of three estrogen receptors in the cell membrane (ERα, ERβ, and GPER were measured using a quantitative plate immunoassay of fixed cells either permeabilized or nonpermeabilized (respectively. Results All xenoestrogens caused responses at these concentrations, and had disruptive effects on the actions of physiologic estrogens. Xenoestrogens reduced the % of cells that responded to estradiol via calcium channel opening. They also inhibited the activation (phosphorylation of extracellular-regulated kinases at some concentrations. They either inhibited or enhanced rapid prolactin release, depending upon concentration. These latter two dose-responses were nonmonotonic, a characteristic of nongenomic estrogenic responses. Conclusions Responses mediated by endogenous estrogens representing different life stages are

  1. The NMR structure of human obestatin in membrane-like environments: insights into the structure-bioactivity relationship of obestatin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Begoña O Alén

    Full Text Available The quest for therapeutic applications of obestatin involves, as a first step, the determination of its 3D solution structure and the relationship between this structure and the biological activity of obestatin. On this basis, we have employed a combination of circular dichroism (CD, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR spectroscopy, and modeling techniques to determine the solution structure of human obestatin (1. Other analogues, including human non-amidated obestatin (2 and the fragment peptides (6-23-obestatin (3, (11-23-obestatin (4, and (16-23-obestatin (5 have also been scrutinized. These studies have been performed in a micellar environment to mimic the cell membrane (sodium dodecyl sulfate, SDS. Furthermore, structural-activity relationship studies have been performed by assessing the in vitro proliferative capabilities of these peptides in the human retinal pigmented epithelial cell line ARPE-19 (ERK1/2 and Akt phosphorylation, Ki67 expression, and cellular proliferation. Our findings emphasize the importance of both the primary structure (composition and size and particular segments of the obestatin molecule that posses significant α-helical characteristics. Additionally, details of a species-specific role for obestatin have also been hypothesized by comparing human and mouse obestatins (1 and 6, respectively at both the structural and bioactivity levels.

  2. Aspectos estruturais da membrana eritrocitária Structural aspects of the erythrocyte membrane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Priscila Murador

    2007-06-01

    ócito e é ainda responsável pela estabilidade sob mecanismos de estresse. Essa revisão da membrana eritrocitária é importante para um melhor entendimento das reações transfusionais, onde a formação de anticorpos contra antígenos de alta freqüência dificulta a transfusão compatível. O estudo da diversidade antigênica, a caracterização bioquímica de diferentes proteínas trará uma contribuição para o estabelecimento da saúde, assim como para o diagnóstico, desenvolvimento de tecnologias, como a produção de anticorpos monoclonais e conduta terapêutica para muitas enfermidades.This article describes the structures and functions of the erythrocyte membrane and its importance in transfusional medicine. The erythrocyte membrane is one of the best known membranes in terms of structure, function and genetic disorders. As any other plasma membrane, it mediates transport functions. It also provides the erythrocytes with their resilience and deformability. According to the International Society of Blood Transfusion (ISBT, more than 500 antigens are expressed in the erythrocyte membrane, and around 270 are involved in transfusion reaction cases and hemolytic diseases of the fetus and newborn. In the ISBT classification, the high frequency series is represented by antigens in more than 99% of population (high prevalence antigen. In transfusion, the absence of these antigens determines severe problems as for example, one woman without the P antigen suffered 6 repetitive miscarriages due to placental insufficiency, which was caused by an antibody formed against the absent P antigen. Some important erythrocyte membrane proteins are described here including Band 3, Glycophorins and spectrin. The most abundant integral membrane protein is Band 3 and its main function is to mediate exchange of chloride and bicarbonate anions across the plasma membrane. The second most abundant integral membrane protein in the human erythrocyte is sialoglycoprotein glycophorin A (GPA

  3. Structural Basis for Translocation of a Biofilm-supporting Exopolysaccharide across the Bacterial Outer Membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yan; Andole Pannuri, Archana; Ni, Dongchun; Zhou, Haizhen; Cao, Xiou; Lu, Xiaomei; Romeo, Tony; Huang, Yihua

    2016-05-01

    The partially de-N-acetylated poly-β-1,6-N-acetyl-d-glucosamine (dPNAG) polymer serves as an intercellular biofilm adhesin that plays an essential role for the development and maintenance of integrity of biofilms of diverse bacterial species. Translocation of dPNAG across the bacterial outer membrane is mediated by a tetratricopeptide repeat-containing outer membrane protein, PgaA. To understand the molecular basis of dPNAG translocation, we determined the crystal structure of the C-terminal transmembrane domain of PgaA (residues 513-807). The structure reveals that PgaA forms a 16-strand transmembrane β-barrel, closed by four loops on the extracellular surface. Half of the interior surface of the barrel that lies parallel to the translocation pathway is electronegative, suggesting that the corresponding negatively charged residues may assist the secretion of the positively charged dPNAG polymer. In vivo complementation assays in a pgaA deletion bacterial strain showed that a cluster of negatively charged residues proximal to the periplasm is necessary for biofilm formation. Biochemical analyses further revealed that the tetratricopeptide repeat domain of PgaA binds directly to the N-deacetylase PgaB and is critical for biofilm formation. Our studies support a model in which the positively charged PgaB-bound dPNAG polymer is delivered to PgaA through the PgaA-PgaB interaction and is further targeted to the β-barrel lumen of PgaA potentially via a charge complementarity mechanism, thus priming the translocation of dPNAG across the bacterial outer membrane. PMID:26957546

  4. RosettaTMH: a method for membrane protein structure elucidation combining EPR distance restraints with assembly of transmembrane helices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Leaver-Fay

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Membrane proteins make up approximately one third of all proteins, and they play key roles in a plethora of physiological processes. However, membrane proteins make up less than 2% of experimentally determined structures, despite significant advances in structure determination methods, such as X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and cryo-electron microscopy. One potential alternative means of structure elucidation is to combine computational methods with experimental EPR data. In 2011, Hirst and others introduced RosettaEPR and demonstrated that this approach could be successfully applied to fold soluble proteins. Furthermore, few computational methods for de novo folding of integral membrane proteins have been presented. In this work, we present RosettaTMH, a novel algorithm for structure prediction of helical membrane proteins. A benchmark set of 34 proteins, in which the proteins ranged in size from 91 to 565 residues, was used to compare RosettaTMH to Rosetta’s two existing membrane protein folding protocols: the published RosettaMembrane folding protocol (“MembraneAbinitio” and folding from an extended chain (“ExtendedChain”. When EPR distance restraints are used, RosettaTMH+EPR outperforms ExtendedChain+EPR for 11 proteins, including the largest six proteins tested. RosettaTMH+EPR is capable of achieving native-like folds for 30 of 34 proteins tested, including receptors and transporters. For example, the average RMSD100SSE relative to the crystal structure for rhodopsin was 6.1 ± 0.4 Å and 6.5 ± 0.6 Å for the 449-residue nitric oxide reductase subunit B, where the standard deviation reflects variance in RMSD100SSE values across ten different EPR distance restraint sets. The addition of RosettaTMH and RosettaTMH+EPR to the Rosetta family of de novo folding methods broadens the scope of helical membrane proteins that can be accurately modeled with this software suite.

  5. Computational molecular modeling and structural rationalization for the design of a drug-loaded PLLA/PVA biopolymeric membrane

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sibeko, B; Pillay, V; Choonara, Y E; Khan, R A; Danckwerts, M P [Department of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, University of the Witwatersrand, 7 York Road, Parktown, 2193 Johannesburg (South Africa); Modi, G [Division of Neurosciences, Department of Neurology, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (South Africa); Iyuke, S E [School of Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (South Africa); Naidoo, D, E-mail: viness.pillay@wits.ac.z [Division of Neurosciences, Department of Neurosurgery, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (South Africa)

    2009-02-15

    The purpose of this study was to design, characterize and assess the influence of triethanolamine (TEA) on the physicomechanical properties and release of methotrexate (MTX) from a composite biopolymeric membrane. Conjugated poly(L-lactic acid) (PLLA) and poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) membranes were prepared by immersion precipitation with and without the addition of TEA. Drug entrapment efficiency (DEE) and release studies were performed in phosphate buffered saline (pH 7.4, 37 deg. C). Scanning electron microscopy elucidated the membrane surface morphology. Computational and structural molecular modeling rationalized the potential mechanisms of membrane formation and MTX release. Bi-axial force-distance (F-D) extensibility profiles were generated to determine the membrane toughness, elasticity and fracturability. Membranes were significantly toughened by the addition of TEA as a discrete rubbery phase within the co-polymer matrix. MTX-TEA-PLLA-PVA membranes were tougher (F = 89 N) and more extensible (D = 8.79 mm) compared to MTX-PLLA-PVA (F = 35 N, D = 3.7 mm) membranes as a greater force of extension and fracture distance were required (N = 10). DEE values were relatively high (>80%, N = 5) for both formulations. Photomicrographs revealed distinct crystalline layered morphologies with macro-pores. MTX was released by tri-phasic kinetics with a lower fractional release of MTX from MTX-TEA-PLLA-PVA membranes compared to MTX-PLLA-PVA. TEA provided a synergistic approach to improving the membrane physicomechanical properties and modulation of MTX release. The composite biopolymeric membrane may therefore be suitable for the novel delivery of MTX in the treatment of chronic primary central nervous system lymphoma.

  6. Determination of the separate lipid and protein profile structures derived from the total membrane profile structure or isolated sarcoplasmic reticulum via x-ray and neutron diffraction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) membranes were prepared to contain biosynthetically deuterated SR phospholipids utilizing specific and general phospholipid exchange proteins (PLEP). Functional measurements and freeze fracture on SR dispersions and x-ray diffraction of hydrated oriented membrane multilayers revealed that the exchanged SR membranes were very similar to unexchanged SR membranes. Low resolution (28-A) neutron diffraction studies utilizing SR membranes exchanged with either protonated or perdeuterated SR phospholipids allowed direct determination of the lipid profile within the isolated SR membrane at two different unit cell repeat distances. These lipid profile structures were found to be highly asymmetric regarding the conformation of the fatty acid chain extents and compositional distribution of phospholipid molecules in the inner vs. outer monolayer of the SR membrane bilayer. The relatively high resolution (11-A) electron-density profile from x-ray diffraction was decomposed by utilizing the asymmetry in the number of phospholipid molecules residing in the inner vs. outer monolayer of the SR lipid bilayer as obtained from the neutron diffraction study. To our knowledge, this represents the first direct determination of a lipid bilayer profile structure within an isolated membrane system

  7. Assessment of the structural brain network reveals altered connectivity in children with unilateral cerebral palsy due to periventricular white matter lesions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kerstin Pannek

    2014-01-01

    Conclusion: This study shows that network-based analysis of structural connectivity can identify alterations in FA in unilateral CP, and that these alterations in FA are related to clinical function. Application of this connectome-based analysis to investigate alterations in connectivity following treatment may elucidate the neurological correlates of improved functioning due to intervention.

  8. Erythrocyte membrane modifying agents and the inhibition of Plasmodium falciparum growth: structure-activity relationships for betulinic acid analogues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziegler, Hanne L; Franzyk, Henrik; Sairafianpour, Majid; Tabatabai, Mehrnoush; Tehrani, Mahboubeh D; Bagherzadeh, Karim; Hägerstrand, Henry; Staerk, Dan; Jaroszewski, Jerzy W

    2004-01-01

    The natural triterpene betulinic acid and its analogues (betulinic aldehyde, lupeol, betulin, methyl betulinate and betulinic acid amide) caused concentration-dependent alterations of erythrocyte membrane shape towards stomatocytes or echinocytes according to their hydrogen bonding properties. Thus, the analogues with a functional group having a capacity of donating a hydrogen bond (COOH, CH(2)OH, CONH(2)) caused formation of echinocytes, whereas those lacking this ability (CH(3), CHO, COOCH(3)) induced formation of stomatocytes. Both kinds of erythrocyte alterations were prohibitive with respect to Plasmodium falciparum invasion and growth; all compounds were inhibitory with IC(50) values in the range 7-28 microM, and the growth inhibition correlated well with the extent of membrane curvature changes assessed by transmission electron microscopy. Erythrocytes pre-loaded with betulinic acid or its analogues and extensively washed in order to remove excess of the chemicals could not serve as hosts for P. falciparum parasites. Betulinic acid and congeners can be responsible for in vitro antiplasmodial activity of plant extracts, as shown for Zataria multiflora Boiss. (Labiatae) and Zizyphus vulgaris Lam. (Rhamnaceae). The activity is evidently due to the incorporation of the compounds into the lipid bilayer of erythrocytes, and may be caused by modifications of cholesterol-rich membrane rafts, recently shown to play an important role in parasite vacuolization. The established link between erythrocyte membrane modifications and antiplasmodial activity may provide a novel target for potential antimalarial drugs. PMID:14697777

  9. Compared study of the local structure of alteration products of SON 68 glass and natural gels; Etude comparee de la structure locale des produits d'alteration du verre SON 68 et de gels naturels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pellegrin, E

    2000-07-01

    This study is a contribution in the understanding of the long time behavior of alteration products of the glass SON 68, used to simulate the nuclear glass R7T7. The local structure around Zirconium and iron has been probed using X-ray absorption spectroscopy in altered surface layer of glass SON 68. Alteration products of this glass have been prepared for short (3 hours to 7 days) and long (17 months) time, using various indexes of saturation for the leaching solution with respect to the Si content of the glass (from 0 to 90 %). The evolution of the local structure around Fe has also been studied in recent and old natural ferric gels. Zr, Fe- L{sub 2,3} XANES and Zr, Fe-K EXAFS spectroscopies have shown that, in the pristine glass, these elements are connected to the polymeric network. Zr is found in an environment close to that of a zircon-silicate containing Na and Ca. Trivalent Fe is a network former. The leached layer of glass SON 68 is constituted of poorly ordered Zr-and Fe-(oxi-hydr)oxides that may have been formed by a mechanism of dissolution/precipitation; a relict phase with the same Zr local structure as that observed in the pristine glass, probably obtained thanks to in-situ solid condensation. The structural characteristics of the leached layer are observed from the first steps of alteration for Zr and Fe. Conversely to Fe, the structural status of Zr depends on the leaching kinetic as well as the contents of Ca and Si in the solid. Fe-K EXAFS results in recent natural ferri-hydrides present a clear structural similarity with that determined in glass SON 68 leached products. The study of old paleosols (between 1,800 and 200,000 years) has demonstrated the long time stability of ferric gels, although an increase of medium range order around Fe is seen. (author)

  10. Alterations of intestinal mucosa structure and barrier function following traumatic brain injury in rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chun-Hua Hang; Ji-Xin Shi; Jie-Shou Li; Wei Wu; Hong-Xia Yin

    2003-01-01

    AIM: Gastrointestinal dysfunction is a common complication in patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, the effect of traumatic brain injury on intestinal mucosa has not been studied previously. The aim of the current study was to explore the alterations of intestinal mucosa morphology and barrier function, and to determine how rapidly the impairment of gut barrier function occurs and how long it persists following traumatic brain injury.METHODS: Male Wistar rats were randomly divided into six groups (6 rats each group) including controls without brain injury and traumatic brain injury groups at hours 3,12, 24, and 72, and on day 7. The intestinal mucosa structure was detected by histopathological examination and electron microscopy. Gut barrier dysfunction was evaluated by detecting serum endotoxin and intestinal permeability. The level of serum endotoxin and intestinal permeability was measured by using chromogenic limulus amebocyte lysate and lactulose/mannitol (L/M) ratio, respectively.RESULTS: After traumatic brain injury, the histopathological alterations of gut mucosa occurred rapidly as early as 3 hours and progressed to a serious state, including shedding of epithelial cells, fracture of villi, focal ulcer, fusion of adjacent villi, dilation of central chyle duct, mucosal atrophy,and vascular dilation, congestion and edema in the villous interstitium and lamina propria. Apoptosis of epithelial cells,fracture and sparseness of microvilli, loss of tight junction between enterocytes, damage of mitochondria and endoplasm, were found by electron microscopy. The villous height, crypt depth and surface area in jejunum decreased progressively with the time of brain injury. As compared with that of control group (183.7±41.8 EU/L), serum endotoxin level was signnificantly increased at 3, 12, and 24 hours following TBI (434.8±54.9 EU/L, 324.2±61.7 EU/L and 303.3±60.2 EU/L, respectively), and peaked at 72 hours (560.5±76.2 EU/L), then declined on day 7

  11. 43-kilodalton protein of Torpedo nicotinic postsynaptic membranes: purification and determination of primary structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The primary structure of the 43-kilodalton peripheral membrane protein (43-kDa protein) of Torpedo nicotinic postsynaptic membrane has been determined. The 14C-labelled 43-kDa protein, which was isolated by preparative sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, has an amino terminus resistant to Edman degradation, while the sequence at the carboxyl terminus is Tyr-Val. An amino acid sequence of 405 residues was obtained by NH2-terminal sequence analysis of complementary peptides generated by digestion with trypsin, chymotrypsin, Staphylococcus aureus V8 protease, and endoproteinase Lys-C, as well as by chemical cleavage at methionine. This sequence of molecular mass 45,618 daltons lacks the amino terminus but extends to the carboxyl terminus of the 43-kDa protein. Unusual structural features of the 43-kDa protein include two regions of ∼ 80 residues, each containing 10% cysteine, as well as stretches predicted to exist as amphipathic α-helices. Other than the group blocking the amino terminus, no evidence was found for posttranslational modification of amino acids. The 43-kDa protein may represent a novel protein family because a computer search of this sequence with the National Biomedical Research Foundation data base (Release 12.0) did not reveal any significant homology to known protein sequences

  12. Physical association between a novel plasma-membrane structure and centrosome orients cell division

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negishi, Takefumi; Miyazaki, Naoyuki; Murata, Kazuyoshi; Yasuo, Hitoyoshi; Ueno, Naoto

    2016-01-01

    In the last mitotic division of the epidermal lineage in the ascidian embryo, the cells divide stereotypically along the anterior-posterior axis. During interphase, we found that a unique membrane structure invaginates from the posterior to the centre of the cell, in a microtubule-dependent manner. The invagination projects toward centrioles on the apical side of the nucleus and associates with one of them. Further, a cilium forms on the posterior side of the cell and its basal body remains associated with the invagination. A laser ablation experiment suggests that the invagination is under tensile force and promotes the posterior positioning of the centrosome. Finally, we showed that the orientation of the invaginations is coupled with the polarized dynamics of centrosome movements and the orientation of cell division. Based on these findings, we propose a model whereby this novel membrane structure orchestrates centrosome positioning and thus the orientation of cell division axis. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.16550.001 PMID:27502556

  13. Structure of BamA, an essential factor in outer membrane protein biogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albrecht, Reinhard; Schütz, Monika; Oberhettinger, Philipp; Faulstich, Michaela; Bermejo, Ivan; Rudel, Thomas; Diederichs, Kay; Zeth, Kornelius

    2014-06-01

    Outer membrane protein (OMP) biogenesis is an essential process for maintaining the bacterial cell envelope and involves the β-barrel assembly machinery (BAM) for OMP recognition, folding and assembly. In Escherichia coli this function is orchestrated by five proteins: the integral outer membrane protein BamA of the Omp85 superfamily and four associated lipoproteins. To unravel the mechanism underlying OMP folding and insertion, the structure of the E. coli BamA β-barrel and P5 domain was determined at 3 Å resolution. These data add information beyond that provided in the recently published crystal structures of BamA from Haemophilus ducreyi and Neisseria gonorrhoeae and are a valuable basis for the interpretation of pertinent functional studies. In an `open' conformation, E. coli BamA displays a significant degree of flexibility between P5 and the barrel domain, which is indicative of a multi-state function in substrate transfer. E. coli BamA is characterized by a discontinuous β-barrel with impaired β1-β16 strand interactions denoted by only two connecting hydrogen bonds and a disordered C-terminus. The 16-stranded barrel surrounds a large cavity which implies a function in OMP substrate binding and partial folding. These findings strongly support a mechanism of OMP biogenesis in which substrates are partially folded inside the barrel cavity and are subsequently released laterally into the lipid bilayer. PMID:24914988

  14. Molecular dynamics studies of simple membrane-water interfaces: Structure and functions in the beginnings of cellular life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Wilson, Michael A.

    1995-01-01

    Molecular dynamics computer simulations of the structure and functions of a simple membrane are performed in order to examine whether membranes provide an environment capable of promoting protobiological evolution. Our model membrane is composed of glycerol 1-monooleate. It is found that the bilayer surface fluctuates in time and space, occasionally creating thinning defects in the membrane. These defects are essential for passive transport of simple ions across membranes because they reduce the Born barrier to this process by approximately 40%. Negative ions are transferred across the bilayer more readily than positive ions due to favorable interactions with the electric field at the membrane-water interface. Passive transport of neutral molecules is, in general, more complex than predicted by the solubility-diffusion model. In particular, molecules which exhibit sufficient hydrophilicity and lipophilicity concentrate near membrane surfaces and experience 'interfacial resistance' to transport. The membrane-water interface forms an environment suitable for heterogeneous catalysis. Several possible mechanisms leading to an increase of reaction rates at the interface are discussed. We conclude that vesicles have many properties that make them very good candidates for earliest protocells. Some potentially fruitful directions of experimental and theoretical research on this subject are proposed.

  15. Molecular dynamics studies of simple membrane — Water interfaces: Structure and functions in the beginnings of cellular life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Wilson, Michael A.

    1995-06-01

    Molecular dynamics computer simulations of the structure and functions of a simple membrane are performed in order to examine whether membranes provide an environment capable of promoting protobiological evolution. Our model membrane is composed of glycerol 1-monooleate. It is found that the bilayer surface fluctuates in time and space, occasionally creating thinning defects in the membrane. These defects are essential for passive transport of simple ions across membranes because they reduce the Bom barrier to this process by approximately 40%. Negative ions are transferred across the bilayer more readily than positive ions due to favorable interactions with the electric field at the membrane-water interface. Passive transport of neutral molecules is, in general, more complex than predicted by the solubility-diffusion model. In particular, molecules which exhibit sufficient hydrophilicity and lipophilicity concentrate near membrane surfaces and experience “interfacial resistance” to transport. The membrane-water interface forms an environment suitable for heterogeneous catalysis. Several possible mechanisms leading to an increase of reaction rates at the interface are discussed. We conclude that vesicles have many properties that make them very good candidates for earliest protocells. Some potentially fruitful directions of experimental and theoretical research on this subject are proposed.

  16. In-situ small/wide-angle neutron scattering studies of the cluster structure in polyelectrolyte membrane for fuel cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Proton conductivity of Nafion membrane is varied by humidity and it has been thought to be affected by the cluster structure of the membrane. We applied Small-Angle Scattering technique under humidity-controlled atmosphere with X-ray (SAXS) and neutron (SANS) to clarify the relationship between the cluster structure and molecular structure in two types of Nafion membrane, N115 and NE151F, which have different equivalent weight (EW). The proton conductivity of N115 is higher than that of NE151F. By these two measurements, three different sized periodic structures were observed in the Nafion membrane. Contrast variation method (D/H=60/40, 75/25, 80/20, 90/10) was also applied in SANS experiments and it was suggested that two of three peaks are originated from two different sizes of water clusters. A distinguishing peak at q=0.2[A-1], which shifts to lower q region by humidity increase, was reproduced by a simulation of Dissipative Particle Dynamics (DPD): the shifts of the peak was interpreted as the swelling of cluster structure. The size of the cluster calculated from the peak position is positively correlated with the proton conductivity. Finally, the effect of EW on the proton conductivity of Nafion membrane was briefly discussed from the point of its cluster structure. (author)

  17. Shell and membrane theories in mechanics and biology from macro- to nanoscale structures

    CERN Document Server

    Mikhasev, Gennadi

    2015-01-01

    This book presents the latest results related to shells  characterize and design shells, plates, membranes and other thin-walled structures, a multidisciplinary approach from macro- to nanoscale is required which involves the classical disciplines of mechanical/civil/materials engineering (design, analysis, and properties) and physics/biology/medicine among others. The book contains contributions of a meeting of specialists (mechanical engineers, mathematicians, physicists and others) in such areas as classical and non-classical shell theories. New trends with respect to applications in mechanical, civil and aero-space engineering, as well as in new branches like medicine and biology are presented which demand improvements of the theoretical foundations of these theories and a deeper understanding of the material behavior used in such structures.

  18. Crystal structures of electrospun PVDF membranes and its separator application for rechargeable lithium metal cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An electrospinning method was used to prepare electrospun PVDF-based membranes (EPMs) for battery separators applications. The morphology of the EPMs was investigated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The relations between applied voltage and average fiber diameter (AFD) under certain electrospinning conditions were discussed. The thermal properties and crystal structure of the EPMs also were investigated by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and wide-angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD). Due to soften PVDF fibers in high temperature, the thermal treated EPMs can form an interconnected web structure, which greatly improves physical properties. Compared with CelgardTM 2400 (PP separator), the cell with EPM shows better cycling ability of CV and charge-discharge performance with little capacity loss after 50 cycles at C/2 rate

  19. Expression, refolding, and initial structural characterization of the Y. pestis Ail outer membrane protein in lipids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plesniak, Leigh A; Mahalakshmi, Radhakrishnan; Rypien, Candace; Yang, Yuan; Racic, Jasmina; Marassi, Francesca M

    2011-01-01

    Ail is an outer membrane protein and virulence factor of Yersinia pestis, an extremely pathogenic, category A biothreat agent, responsible for precipitating massive human plague pandemics throughout history. Due to its key role in bacterial adhesion to host cells and bacterial resistance to host defense, Ail is a key target for anti-plague therapy. However, little information is available about the molecular aspects of its function and interactions with the human host, and the structure of Ail is not known. Here we describe the recombinant expression, purification, refolding, and sample preparation of Ail for solution and solid-state NMR structural studies in lipid micelles and lipid bilayers. The initial NMR and CD spectra show that Ail adopts a well-defined transmembrane β-sheet conformation in lipids. PMID:20883662

  20. Effect of Nd-doping on the Thermal Stability and Pore-structure of Al2O3 Membranes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YU Jian-Chang; XU Wei-Jun; HUANG Qing-Ming; HU Sheng-Wei

    2005-01-01

    Unsupported Nd-doped Al2O3 membranes have been prepared with a sol-gel treatnt by using aluminium isopropoxide and Nd(NO3)3 as the main raw materials. The properties of Nd-doped Al2O3 membranes were characterized by XRD, DTA-TG, IR and N2 adsorption. The effects of Nd-doping on the phase composition, thermal stability as well as applications of pore- structure of Nd-doped Al2O3 membranes at high temperature were discussed. The results show that Nd-doping can raise the transition temperature rom γ-Al2O3 to α-Al2O3, enhance the thermal stability of Al2O3 membranes, and evidently improve the pore-structural parameters of Al2O3 mem- branes applied at higher temperatures.

  1. Inclusion of thiol DAB dendrimer/CdSe quantum dots based in a membrane structure: Surface and bulk membrane modification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: ► Fluorescent nanocomposite based in CdSe quantum dots (QDs) coated by thiol polypropylenimine (DAB). ► Bulk chemical characterization by TEM and EDAX ► Inclusion of the S-DAB-CdSe QDs in a cellulosic support and its characterization by Fluorescence and XPS. ► Electrical characterization by Impedance Spectroscopy of dry and wet samples containing a heavy metal. -- Abstract: The behavior of a fluorescent nanocomposite, obtained by means of a thiol polypropylenimine dendrimer of third generation coated with CdSe quantum dots, and embedded in a hydrophilic cellulosic membrane as support is electrochemically studied in order to evaluate its applicability as a sensor in liquid media. The characterization of the nanocomposite by TEM and EDAX shows uniform nano morphology (size comprised in the range 60–90 nm) and composition, respectively. The analysis of the engineered hybrid cellulose-dendrimer quantum dots material by confocal fluorescence microscopy indicates almost mono-dispersion distribution of the nanocomposite when irradiated under UV light, while its presence on the film surface was determined by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. Impedance spectroscopy measurements performed with dry membrane samples show a decrease in the conductivity and dielectric constant of the modified membrane in comparison with the raw support. Electrical changes in the modified film associated to the presence of Cd(II) uptakes from a Cl2Cd solution were also obtained. These results support the possible application of this nanocomposite material as heavy metal sensor in liquid media

  2. Membrane protein assembly: genetic, evolutionary and medical perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manoil, C; Traxler, B

    1995-01-01

    Lipid bilayers are delicate structures that are easily disrupted by a variety of amphipathic molecules. Yet the viability of a cell requires the continued assembly of large amphipathic proteins within its membranes without damage. The need to minimize bilayer disruption may account for a number of fundamental features of membrane protein assembly. These include the use of redundant sequence information to establish the topologies and folded structures of membrane proteins, and the existence of efficient mechanisms to rid cells of misassembled proteins. Most missense mutations that inactivate a membrane protein probably do so by altering the folding of the membrane-inserted structure rather than by rearranging the topology or by changing key residues involved directly in function. Such misfolded membrane proteins may be toxic to cells if they escape cellular safeguards. This toxicity may underlie some human degenerative diseases due to mutant membrane proteins. PMID:8825471

  3. Quantitative structure-retention relationships of flavonoids unraveled by immobilized artificial membrane chromatography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santoro, Adriana Leandra; Carrilho, Emanuel; Lanças, Fernando Mauro; Montanari, Carlos Alberto

    2016-06-10

    The pharmacokinetic properties of flavonoids with differing degrees of lipophilicity were investigated using immobilized artificial membranes (IAMs) as the stationary phase in high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). For each flavonoid compound, we investigated whether the type of column used affected the correlation between the retention factors and the calculated octanol/water partition (log Poct). Three-dimensional (3D) molecular descriptors were calculated from the molecular structure of each compound using i) VolSurf software, ii) the GRID method (computational procedure for determining energetically favorable binding sites in molecules of known structure using a probe for calculating the 3D molecular interaction fields, between the probe and the molecule), and iii) the relationship between partition and molecular structure, analyzed in terms of physicochemical descriptors. The VolSurf built-in Caco-2 model was used to estimate compound permeability. The extent to which the datasets obtained from different columns differ both from each other and from both the calculated log Poct and the predicted permeability in Caco-2 cells was examined by principal component analysis (PCA). The immobilized membrane partition coefficients (kIAM) were analyzed using molecular descriptors in partial least square regression (PLS) and a quantitative structure-retention relationship was generated for the chromatographic retention in the cholesterol column. The cholesterol column provided the best correlation with the permeability predicted by the Caco-2 cell model and a good fit model with great prediction power was obtained for its retention data (R(2)=0.96 and Q(2)=0.85 with four latent variables). PMID:26916828

  4. Structure of the Membrane-tethering GRASP Domain Reveals a Unique PDZ Ligand Interaction That Mediates Golgi Biogenesis*

    OpenAIRE

    Truschel, Steven T.; Sengupta, Debrup; Foote, Adam; Heroux, Annie; Macbeth, Mark R.; Linstedt, Adam D.

    2011-01-01

    Biogenesis of the ribbon-like membrane network of the mammalian Golgi requires membrane tethering by the conserved GRASP domain in GRASP65 and GRASP55, yet the tethering mechanism is not fully understood. Here, we report the crystal structure of the GRASP55 GRASP domain, which revealed an unusual arrangement of two tandem PDZ folds that more closely resemble prokaryotic PDZ domains. Biochemical and functional data indicated that the interaction between the ligand-binding pocket of PDZ1 and an...

  5. Structural characterization of outer membrane components of the type IV pili system in pathogenic Neisseria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samta Jain

    Full Text Available Structures of the type IV pili secretin complexes from Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Neisseria meningitidis, embedded in outer membranes were investigated by transmission electron microscopy. Single particle averaging revealed additional domains not observed previously. Secretin complexes of N. gonorrhoeae showed a double ring structure with a 14-15-fold symmetry in the central ring, and a 14-fold symmetry of the peripheral ring with 7 spikes protruding. In secretin complexes of N. meningitidis, the spikes were absent and the peripheral ring was partly or completely lacking. When present, it had a 19-fold symmetry. The structures of the complexes in several pil mutants were determined. Structures obtained from the pilC1/C2 adhesin and the pilW minor pilin deletion strains were similar to wild-type, whereas deletion of the homologue of N. meningitidis PilW resulted in the absence of secretin structures. Remarkably, the pilE pilin subunit and pilP lipoprotein deletion mutants showed a change in the symmetry of the peripheral ring from 14 to 19 and loss of spikes. The pilF ATPase mutant also lost the spikes, but maintained 14-fold symmetry. These results show that secretin complexes contain previously unidentified large and flexible extra domains with a probable role in stabilization or assembly of type IV pili.

  6. Effect of hydrogenated cardanol on the structure of model membranes studied by EPR and NMR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santeusanio, Stefania; Attanasi, Orazio Antonio; Majer, Roberta; Cangiotti, Michela; Fattori, Alberto; Ottaviani, Maria Francesca

    2013-09-01

    Hydrogenated cardanol (HC) is known to act as an antiobesity, promising antioxidant, and eco-friendly brominating agent. In this respect, it is important to find the way to transport and protect HC into the body; a micellar structure works as the simplest membrane model and may be considered a suitable biocarrier for HC. Therefore, it is useful to analyze the impact of HC in the micellar structure and properties. This study reports a computer aided electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) and (1)H NMR investigation of structural variations of cetyltrimetylammonium bromide (CTAB) micelles upon insertion of HC at different concentrations and pH variations. Surfactant spin probes inserted in the micelles allowed us to get information on the structure and dynamics of the micelles and the interactions between HC and CTAB. The formation of highly packed HC-CTAB mixed micelles were favored by the occurrence of both hydrophobic (chain-chain) and hydrophilic (between the polar and charged lipid heads) interactions. These interactions were enhanced by neutralization of the acidic HC heads. Different HC localizations into the micelles and micellar structures were identified by changing HC/CTAB relative concentrations and pH. The increase in HC concentration generated mixed micelles characterized by an increased surfactant packing. These results suggested a rod-like shape of the mixed micelles. The increase in pH promoted the insertion of deprotonated HC into less packed micelles, favored by the electrostatic head-head interactions between CTAB and deprotonated-HC surfactants. PMID:23915214

  7. Comparative analysis and “expression space” coverage of the production of prokaryotic membrane proteins for structural genomics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Surade, Sachin; Klein, Markus; Stolt-Bergner, Peggy C.; Muenke, Cornelia; Roy, Ankita; Michel, Hartmut

    2006-01-01

    Membrane proteins comprise up to one-third of prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes, but only a very small number of membrane protein structures are known. Membrane proteins are challenging targets for structural biology, primarily due to the difficulty in producing and purifying milligram quantities of these proteins. We are evaluating different methods to produce and purify large numbers of prokaryotic membrane proteins for subsequent structural and functional analysis. Here, we present the comparative expression data for 37 target proteins, all of them secondary transporters, from the mesophilic organism Salmonella typhimurium and the two hyperthermophilic organisms Aquifex aeolicus and Pyrococcus furiosus in three different Escherichia coli expression vectors. In addition, we study the use of Lactococcus lactis as a host for integral membrane protein expression. Overall, 78% of the targets were successfully produced under at least one set of conditions. Analysis of these results allows us to assess the role of different variables in increasing “expression space” coverage for our set of targets. This analysis implies that to maximize the number of nonhomologous targets that are expressed, orthologous targets should be chosen and tested in two vectors with different types of promoters, using C-terminal tags. In addition, E. coli is shown to be a robust host for the expression of prokaryotic transporters, and is superior to L. lactis. These results therefore suggest appropriate strategies for high-throughput heterologous overproduction of membrane proteins. PMID:16943447

  8. Structural Brain Alterations in Motor Subtypes of Parkinson’s Disease: Evidence from Probabilistic Tractography and Shape Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vervoort, Griet; Leunissen, Inge; Firbank, Michael; Heremans, Elke; Nackaerts, Evelien; Vandenberghe, Wim; Nieuwboer, Alice

    2016-01-01

    Background and Objectives The postural instability and gait disorder (PIGD) and tremor dominant (TD) subtypes of Parkinson’s disease (PD) show different patterns of alterations in functional connectivity (FC) between specific brain regions. This study aimed to investigate the relation between symptomatic heterogeneity in PD and structural alterations underlying these FC changes. Methods 68 PD patients classified as PIGD (n = 41) or TD (n = 19) and 19 age-matched controls underwent Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Diffusion-weighted images were used to assess fractional anisotropy (FA) and mean diffusivity (MD) at the whole-brain level using tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS). In addition, structural connectivity was assessed between regions that previously showed altered FC using probabilistic tractography. Anatomical images were used to determine shape and volume of the putamen, caudate and pallidum. Results TBSS revealed widespread FA reductions in PIGD compared to controls involving the superior longitudinal fasciculi and corpus callosum. No such differences were found in TD. Both PD subgroups had increased MD compared to controls in tracts connecting the left caudate with the bilateral ventral putamen. TD patients additionally showed increased MD compared to PIGD and controls in tracts connecting the right inferior parietal lobule with the right premotor and primary motor cortex, which previously showed altered FC. We also found grey matter atrophy in the rostrodorsal head of the caudate in PIGD compared to controls. Conclusion Microstructural changes in white matter tracts, particularly in those connecting striatal sub-areas, partly underlie FC alterations in PD subtypes. Caudate shape alterations further implicate the striatum in PIGD pathophysiology. PMID:27314952

  9. In-situ biofilm characterization in membrane systems using Optical Coherence Tomography: Formation, structure, detachment and impact of flux change

    KAUST Repository

    Dreszer, C.

    2014-12-01

    Biofouling causes performance loss in spiral wound nanofiltration (NF) and reverse osmosis (RO) membrane operation for process and drinking water production. The development of biofilm formation, structure and detachment was studied in-situ, non-destructively with Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) in direct relation with the hydraulic biofilm resistance and membrane performance parameters: transmembrane pressure drop (TMP) and feed-channel pressure drop (FCP). The objective was to evaluate the suitability of OCT for biofouling studies, applying a membrane biofouling test cell operated at constant crossflow velocity (0.1 m s-1) and permeate flux (20 L m-2h-1).In time, the biofilm thickness on the membrane increased continuously causing a decline in membrane performance. Local biofilm detachment was observed at the biofilm-membrane interface. A mature biofilm was subjected to permeate flux variation (20 to 60 to 20 L m-2h-1). An increase in permeate flux caused a decrease in biofilm thickness and an increase in biofilm resistance, indicating biofilm compaction. Restoring the original permeate flux did not completely restore the original biofilm parameters: After elevated flux operation the biofilm thickness was reduced to 75% and the hydraulic resistance increased to 116% of the original values. Therefore, after a temporarily permeate flux increase the impact of the biofilm on membrane performance was stronger. OCT imaging of the biofilm with increased permeate flux revealed that the biofilm became compacted, lost internal voids, and became more dense. Therefore, membrane performance losses were not only related to biofilm thickness but also to the internal biofilm structure, e.g. caused by changes in pressure.Optical Coherence Tomography proved to be a suitable tool for quantitative in-situ biofilm thickness and morphology studies which can be carried out non-destructively and in real-time in transparent membrane biofouling monitors.

  10. pH-dependent formation of membranous cytoplasmic body-like structure of ganglioside G(M1)/bis(monoacylglycero)phosphate mixed membranes.

    OpenAIRE

    Hayakawa, Tomohiro; Makino, Asami; Murate, Motohide; Sugimoto, Ichiro; Hashimoto, Yasuhiro; Takahashi, Hiroshi; Ito, Kazuki; Fujisawa, Tetsuro; Matsuo, Hirotami; Kobayashi, Toshihide

    2007-01-01

    Membrane structures of the mixtures of ganglioside G(M1) and endosome specific lipid, bis (monoacylglycero) phosphate (BMP, also known as lysobisphosphatidic acid) were examined at various pH conditions by freeze-fracture electron microscopy and small-angle x-ray scattering. At pH 8.5-6.5, a G(M1)/BMP (1:1 mol/mol) mixture formed small vesicular aggregates, whereas the mixture formed closely packed lamellar structures under acidic conditions (pH 5.5, 4.6) with the lamellar repeat distance of ...

  11. pH-dependent Formation of Membranous Cytoplasmic Body-Like Structure of Ganglioside GM1/Bis(Monoacylglycero)Phosphate Mixed Membranes

    OpenAIRE

    Hayakawa, Tomohiro; Makino, Asami; Murate, Motohide; Sugimoto, Ichiro; Hashimoto, Yasuhiro; Takahashi, Hiroshi; Ito, Kazuki; Fujisawa, Tetsuro; Matsuo, Hirotami; Kobayashi, Toshihide

    2006-01-01

    Membrane structures of the mixtures of ganglioside GM1 and endosome specific lipid, bis (monoacylglycero) phosphate (BMP, also known as lysobisphosphatidic acid) were examined at various pH conditions by freeze-fracture electron microscopy and small-angle x-ray scattering. At pH 8.5–6.5, a GM1/BMP (1:1 mol/mol) mixture formed small vesicular aggregates, whereas the mixture formed closely packed lamellar structures under acidic conditions (pH 5.5, 4.6) with the lamellar repeat distance of 8.06...

  12. Detection of Chromosomal Structural Alterations in Single Cells by SNP Arrays: A Systematic Survey of Amplification Bias and Optimized Workflow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwamoto, Kazuya; Bundo, Miki; Ueda, Junko; Nakano, Yoko; Ukai, Wataru; Hashimoto, Eri; Saito, Toshikazu; Kato, Tadafumi

    2007-01-01

    Background In single-cell human genome analysis using whole-genome amplified product, a strong amplification bias involving allele dropout and preferential amplification hampers the quality of results. Using an oligonucleotide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array, we systematically examined the nature of this amplification bias, including frequency, degree, and preference for genomic location, and we assessed the effects of this amplification bias on subsequent genotype and chromosomal copy number analyses. Methodology/Principal Findings We found a large variability in amplification bias among the amplified products obtained by multiple displacement amplification (MDA), and this bias had a severe effect on the genotype and chromosomal copy number analyses. We established optimal experimental conditions for pre-screening for high-quality amplified products, processing array data, and analyzing chromosomal structural alterations. Using this optimized protocol, we successfully detected previously unidentified chromosomal structural alterations in single cells from a lymphoblastoid cell line. These alterations were subsequently confirmed by karyotype analysis. In addition, we successfully obtained reproducible chromosomal copy number profiles of single cells from the cell line with a complex karyotype, indicating the applicability and potential of our optimized workflow. Conclusions/Significance Our results suggest that the quality of amplification products should be critically assessed before using them for genomic analyses. The method of MDA-based whole-genome amplification followed by SNP array analysis described here will be useful for exploring chromosomal alterations in single cells. PMID:18074030

  13. Structural basis for feed-forward transcriptional regulation of membrane lipid homeostasis in Staphylococcus aureus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Albanesi

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The biosynthesis of membrane lipids is an essential pathway for virtually all bacteria. Despite its potential importance for the development of novel antibiotics, little is known about the underlying signaling mechanisms that allow bacteria to control their membrane lipid composition within narrow limits. Recent studies disclosed an elaborate feed-forward system that senses the levels of malonyl-CoA and modulates the transcription of genes that mediate fatty acid and phospholipid synthesis in many Gram-positive bacteria including several human pathogens. A key component of this network is FapR, a transcriptional regulator that binds malonyl-CoA, but whose mode of action remains enigmatic. We report here the crystal structures of FapR from Staphylococcus aureus (SaFapR in three relevant states of its regulation cycle. The repressor-DNA complex reveals that the operator binds two SaFapR homodimers with different affinities, involving sequence-specific contacts from the helix-turn-helix motifs to the major and minor grooves of DNA. In contrast with the elongated conformation observed for the DNA-bound FapR homodimer, binding of malonyl-CoA stabilizes a different, more compact, quaternary arrangement of the repressor, in which the two DNA-binding domains are attached to either side of the central thioesterase-like domain, resulting in a non-productive overall conformation that precludes DNA binding. The structural transition between the DNA-bound and malonyl-CoA-bound states of SaFapR involves substantial changes and large (>30 Å inter-domain movements; however, both conformational states can be populated by the ligand-free repressor species, as confirmed by the structure of SaFapR in two distinct crystal forms. Disruption of the ability of SaFapR to monitor malonyl-CoA compromises cell growth, revealing the essentiality of membrane lipid homeostasis for S. aureus survival and uncovering novel opportunities for the development of antibiotics

  14. The impact of auxins used in assisted phytoextraction of metals from the contaminated environment on the alterations caused by lead(II) ions in the organization of model lipid membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hąc-Wydro, Katarzyna; Sroka, Aleksandra; Jabłońska, Klaudia

    2016-07-01

    Auxins are successfully used to improve phytoextraction efficiency of metal ions from the contaminated environment, however, the mechanism of their activity in this field is not explained. Auxins are known to exert various biochemical alterations in the plant membranes and cells, but their activity involves also direct interactions with lipids leading to changes in membrane organization. Following the suggestion that the auxins-induced modifications in membrane properties alleviate toxic effect of metal ions in this paper we have undertaken the comparative studies on the effect of metal ions and metal ions/auxins mixtures on model membrane systems. The experiments were done on lipid monolayers differing in their composition spread on water subphase and on Pb(2+), Indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), 1-Naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA) and Pb(2+)/IAA and Pb(2+)/NAA water solutions. The analysis of the collected data suggests that metal ions and auxins can change fluidity of the lipid systems and weaken the interactions between monolayer components. This manifested in the increase of the mean area per molecule and the excess area per molecule values for the films on Pb(2+), auxins as well as Pb(2+)/auxin solutions as compared to the values on pure water subphase. However, the presence of auxin in the mi