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Sample records for cell gap junction

  1. Gap Junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Morten Schak; Axelsen, Lene Nygaard; Sorgen, Paul L.; Verma, Vandana; Delmar, Mario; Holstein-Rathlou, Niels-Henrik

    2013-01-01

    Gap junctions are essential to the function of multicellular animals, which require a high degree of coordination between cells. In vertebrates, gap junctions comprise connexins and currently 21 connexins are known in humans. The functions of gap junctions are highly diverse and include exchange of metabolites and electrical signals between cells, as well as functions, which are apparently unrelated to intercellular communication. Given the diversity of gap junction physiology, regulation of gap junction activity is complex. The structure of the various connexins is known to some extent; and structural rearrangements and intramolecular interactions are important for regulation of channel function. Intercellular coupling is further regulated by the number and activity of channels present in gap junctional plaques. The number of connexins in cell-cell channels is regulated by controlling transcription, translation, trafficking, and degradation; and all of these processes are under strict control. Once in the membrane, channel activity is determined by the conductive properties of the connexin involved, which can be regulated by voltage and chemical gating, as well as a large number of posttranslational modifications. The aim of the present article is to review our current knowledge on the structure, regulation, function, and pharmacology of gap junctions. This will be supported by examples of how different connexins and their regulation act in concert to achieve appropriate physiological control, and how disturbances of connexin function can lead to disease. © 2012 American Physiological Society. Compr Physiol 2:1981-2035, 2012. PMID:23723031

  2. Gap-junction-mediated communication in human periodontal ligament cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kato, R; Ishihara, Y; Kawanabe, N; Sumiyoshi, K; Yoshikawa, Y; Nakamura, M; Imai, Y; Yanagita, T; Fukushima, H; Kamioka, H; Takano-Yamamoto, T; Yamashiro, T

    2013-07-01

    Periodontal tissue homeostasis depends on a complex cellular network that conveys cell-cell communication. Gap junctions (GJs), one of the intercellular communication systems, are found between adjacent human periodontal ligament (hPDL) cells; however, the functional GJ coupling between hPDL cells has not yet been elucidated. In this study, we investigated functional gap-junction-mediated intercellular communication in isolated primary hPDL cells. SEM images indicated that the cells were in contact with each other via dendritic processes, and also showed high anti-connexin43 (Cx43) immunoreactivity on these processes. Gap-junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) among hPDL cells was assessed by fluorescence recovery after a photobleaching (FRAP) analysis, which exhibited dye coupling between hPDL cells, and was remarkably down-regulated when the cells were treated with a GJ blocker. Additionally, we examined GJs under hypoxic stress. The fluorescence recovery and expression levels of Cx43 decreased time-dependently under the hypoxic condition. Exposure to GJ inhibitor or hypoxia increased RANKL expression, and decreased OPG expression. This study shows that GJIC is responsible for hPDL cells and that its activity is reduced under hypoxia. This is consistent with the possible role of hPDL cells in regulating the biochemical reactions in response to changes in the hypoxic environment.

  3. Ouabain Increases Gap Junctional Communication in Epithelial Cells

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    Arturo Ponce

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: The finding that endogenous ouabain acts as a hormone prompted efforts to elucidate its physiological function. In previous studies, we have shown that 10 nM ouabain (i.e., a concentration within the physiological range modulates cell-cell contacts such as tight junctions and apical/basolateral polarity. In this study, we examined whether 10 nM ouabain affects another important cell-cell feature: gap junction communication (GJC. Methods: We employed two different approaches: 1 analysis of the cell-to-cell diffusion of neurobiotin injected into a particular MDCK cell (epithelial cells from dog kidneys in a confluent monolayer by counting the number of neighboring cells reached by the probe and 2 measurement of the electrical capacitance. Results: We found that 10 nM ouabain increase GJC by 475% within 1 hour. The Na+-K+-ATPase acts as a receptor of ouabain. In previous works we have shown that ouabain activates c-Src and ERK1/2 in 1 hour; in the present study we show that the inhibition of these proteins block the effect of ouabain on GJC. This increase in GJC does not require synthesis of new protein components, because the inhibitors cycloheximide and actinomycin D did not affect this phenomenon. Using silencing assays we also demonstrate that this ouabain-induced enhancement of GJC involves connexins 32 and 43. Conclusion: Ouabain 10 nM increases GJC in MDCK cells.

  4. Chlorpromazine reduces the intercellular communication via gap junctions in mammalian cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Orellana, Juan A.; Palacios-Prado, Nicolas; Saez, Juan C.

    2006-01-01

    In the work presented herein, we evaluated the effect of chlorpromazine (CPZ) on gap junctions expressed by two mammalian cell types; Gn-11 cells (cell line derived from mouse LHRH neurons) and rat cortical astrocytes maintained in culture. We also attempted to elucidate possible mechanisms of action of CPZ effects on gap junctions. CPZ, in concentrations comparable with doses used to treat human diseases, was found to reduce the intercellular communication via gap junctions as evaluated with measurements of dye coupling (Lucifer yellow). In both cell types, maximal inhibition of functional gap junctions was reached within about 1 h of treatment with CPZ, an recovery was almost complete at about 5 h after CPZ wash out. In both cell types, CPZ treatment increased the phosphorylation state of connexin43 (Cx43), a gap junction protein subunit. Moreover, CPZ reduced the reactivity of Cx43 (immunofluorescence) at cell interfaces and concomitantly increased its reactivity in intracellular vesicles, suggesting an increased retrieval from and/or reduced insertion into the plasma membrane. CPZ also caused cellular retraction reducing cell-cell contacts in a reversible manner. The reduction in contact area might destabilize existing gap junctions and abrogate formation of new ones. Moreover, the CPZ-induced reduction in gap junctional communication may depend on the connexins (Cxs) forming the junctions. If Cx43 were the only connexin expressed, MAPK-dependent phosphorylation of this connexin would induce closure of gap junction channels

  5. ATP- and gap junction-dependent intercellular calcium signaling in osteoblastic cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jorgensen, N R; Geist, S T; Civitelli, R

    1997-01-01

    mechanically induced calcium waves in two rat osteosarcoma cell lines that differ in the gap junction proteins they express, in their ability to pass microinjected dye from cell to cell, and in their expression of P2Y2 (P2U) purinergic receptors. ROS 17/2.8 cells, which express the gap junction protein......Many cells coordinate their activities by transmitting rises in intracellular calcium from cell to cell. In nonexcitable cells, there are currently two models for intercellular calcium wave propagation, both of which involve release of inositol trisphosphate (IP3)- sensitive intracellular calcium...... stores. In one model, IP3 traverses gap junctions and initiates the release of intracellular calcium stores in neighboring cells. Alternatively, calcium waves may be mediated not by gap junctional communication, but rather by autocrine activity of secreted ATP on P2 purinergic receptors. We studied...

  6. Innexin gap junctions in nerve cells coordinate spontaneous contractile behavior in Hydra polyps

    KAUST Repository

    Takaku, Yasuharu

    2014-01-07

    Nerve cells and spontaneous coordinated behavior first appeared near the base of animal evolution in the common ancestor of cnidarians and bilaterians. Experiments on the cnidarian Hydra have demonstrated that nerve cells are essential for this behavior, although nerve cells in Hydra are organized in a diffuse network and do not form ganglia. Here we show that the gap junction protein innexin-2 is expressed in a small group of nerve cells in the lower body column of Hydra and that an anti-innexin-2 antibody binds to gap junctions in the same region. Treatment of live animals with innexin-2 antibody eliminates gap junction staining and reduces spontaneous body column contractions. We conclude that a small subset of nerve cells, connected by gap junctions and capable of synchronous firing, act as a pacemaker to coordinate the contraction of the body column in the absence of ganglia.

  7. Quantitative analysis of dual whole-cell voltage-clamp determination of gap junctional conductance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Rijen, H. V.; Wilders, R.; van Ginneken, A. C.; Jongsma, H. J.

    1998-01-01

    The dual whole-cell voltage-clamp technique is used widely for determination of kinetics and conductance of gap junctions. The use of this technique may, however, occasion to considerable errors. We have analysed the errors in steady state junctional conductance measurements under different

  8. 7-Ketocholesterol modulates intercellular communication through gap-junction in bovine lens epithelial cells

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    Pereira Paulo

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Connexin43 (Cx43 is an integral membrane protein that forms intercellular channels called gap junctions. Intercellular communication in the eye lens relies on an extensive network of gap junctions essential for the maintenance of lens transparency. The association of Cx43 with cholesterol enriched lipid raft domains was recently demonstrated. The objective of this study is to assess if products of cholesterol oxidation (oxysterols affect gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC. Results Primary cultures of lens epithelial cells (LEC were incubated with 7-ketocholesterol (7-Keto, 25-hydroxycholesterol (25-OH or cholesterol and the subcellular distribution of Cx43 was evaluated by immunofluorescence confocal microscopy. The levels of Cx43 present in gap junction plaques were assessed by its insolubility in Triton X-100 and quantified by western blotting. The stability of Cx43 at the plasma membrane following incubation with oxysterols was evaluated by biotinylation of cell surface proteins. Gap junction intercellular communication was evaluated by transfer of the dye Lucifer yellow. The results obtained showed that 7-keto induces an accumulation of Cx43 at the plasma membrane and an increase in intercellular communication through gap junction. However, incubation with cholesterol or 25-OH did not lead to significant alterations on subcellular distribution of Cx43 nor in intercellular communication. Data further suggests that increased intercellular communication results from increased stability of Cx43 at the plasma membrane, presumably forming functional gap-junctions, as suggested by decreased solubility of Cx43 in 1% Triton X-100. The increased stability of Cx43 at the plasma membrane seems to be specific and not related to disruption of endocytic pathway, as demonstrated by dextran uptake. Conclusions Results demonstrate, for the first time, that 7-keto induces an increase in gap junction intercellular communication

  9. Gap junctions at the dendritic cell-T cell interface are key elements for antigen-dependent T cell activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elgueta, Raul; Tobar, Jaime A; Shoji, Kenji F; De Calisto, Jaime; Kalergis, Alexis M; Bono, Maria R; Rosemblatt, Mario; Sáez, Juan C

    2009-07-01

    The acquired immune response begins with Ag presentation by dendritic cells (DCs) to naive T cells in a heterocellular cell-cell contact-dependent process. Although both DCs and T cells are known to express connexin43, a gap junction protein subunit, the role of connexin43 on the initiation of T cell responses remains to be elucidated. In the present work, we report the formation of gap junctions between DCs and T cells and their role on T cell activation during Ag presentation by DCs. In cocultures of DCs and T cells, Lucifer yellow microinjected into DCs is transferred to adjacent transgenic CD4(+) T cells, only if the specific antigenic peptide was present at least during the first 24 h of cocultures. This dye transfer was sensitive to gap junction blockers, such as oleamide, and small peptides containing the extracellular loop sequences of conexin. Furthermore, in this system, gap junction blockers drastically reduced T cell activation as reflected by lower proliferation, CD69 expression, and IL-2 secretion. This lower T cell activation produced by gap junction blockers was not due to a lower expression of CD80, CD86, CD40, and MHC-II on DCs. Furthermore, gap junction blocker did not affect polyclonal activation of T cell induced with anti-CD3 plus anti-CD28 Abs in the absence of DCs. These results strongly suggest that functional gap junctions assemble at the interface between DCs and T cells during Ag presentation and that they play an essential role in T cell activation.

  10. Gap junctions in cells of the immune system: structure, regulation and possible functional roles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.C. Sáez

    2000-04-01

    Full Text Available Gap junction channels are sites of cytoplasmic communication between contacting cells. In vertebrates, they consist of protein subunits denoted connexins (Cxs which are encoded by a gene family. According to their Cx composition, gap junction channels show different gating and permeability properties that define which ions and small molecules permeate them. Differences in Cx primary sequences suggest that channels composed of different Cxs are regulated differentially by intracellular pathways under specific physiological conditions. Functional roles of gap junction channels could be defined by the relative importance of permeant substances, resulting in coordination of electrical and/or metabolic cellular responses. Cells of the native and specific immune systems establish transient homo- and heterocellular contacts at various steps of the immune response. Morphological and functional studies reported during the last three decades have revealed that many intercellular contacts between cells in the immune response present gap junctions or "gap junction-like" structures. Partial characterization of the molecular composition of some of these plasma membrane structures and regulatory mechanisms that control them have been published recently. Studies designed to elucidate their physiological roles suggest that they might permit coordination of cellular events which favor the effective and timely response of the immune system.

  11. Connexin 26-mediated gap junctional intercellular communication suppresses paracellular permeability of human intestinal epithelial cell monolayers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morita, Hidekazu; Katsuno, Tatsuro; Hoshimoto, Aihiro; Hirano, Noriaki; Saito, Yasushi; Suzuki, Yasuo

    2004-01-01

    In some cell types, gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) is associated with tight junctions. The present study was performed to determine the roles of GJIC in regulation of the barrier function of tight junctions. Caco-2 human colonic cells were used as a monolayer model, and barrier function was monitored by measuring mannitol permeability and transepithelial electrical resistance (TER). The monolayers were chemically disrupted by treatment with oleic acid and taurocholic acid. Western blotting analyses were performed to evaluate the protein levels of connexins, which are components of gap junctional intercellular channels. Cx26 expression was detected in preconfluent Caco-2 cells, and its level increased gradually after the monolayer reached confluency. These results prompted us to examine whether overexpression of Cx26 affects barrier function. Monolayers of Caco-2 cells stably expressing Cx26 showed significantly lower mannitol permeability and higher TER than mock transfectants when the monolayers were chemically disrupted. The levels of claudin-4, an important component of tight junctions, were significantly increased in the stable Cx26 transfectant. These results suggest that Cx26-mediated GJIC may play a crucial role in enhancing the barrier function of Caco-2 cell monolayers

  12. Ochratoxim A alters cell adhesion and gap junction intercellular communication in MDCK cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mally, Angela; Decker, Martina; Bekteshi, Michaela; Dekant, Wolfgang

    2006-01-01

    Ochratoxin A (OTA) is one of the most potent renal carcinogens studied to date, but the mechanism of tumor formation by ochratoxin A remains largely unknown. Cell adhesion and cell-cell communication participate in the regulation of signaling pathways involved in cell proliferation and growth control and it is therefore not surprising that modulation of cell-cell signaling has been implicated in cancer development. Several nephrotoxicants and renal carcinogens have been shown to alter cell-cell signaling by interference with gap junction intercell communication (GJIC) and/or cell adhesion, and the aim of this study was to determine if disruption of cell-cell interactions occurs in kidney epithelial cells in response to OTA treatment. MDCK cells were treated with OTA (0-50 μM) for up to 24 h and gap junction function was analyzed using the scrape-load/dye transfer assay. In addition, expression and intracellular localization of Cx43, E-cadherin and β-catenin were determined by immunoblot and immunofluorescence analysis. A clear decrease in the distance of dye transfer was evident following treatment with OTA at concentrations/incubation times which did not affect cell viability. Consistent with the functional inhibition of GJIC, treatment with OTA resulted in a dose-dependent decrease in Cx43 expression. In contrast to Cx43, OTA did not alter total amount of the adherens junction proteins E-cadherin and β-catenin. Moreover, Western blot analysis of Triton X-100 soluble and insoluble protein fractions did not indicate translocation of cell adhesion molecules from the membrane to the cytoplasm. However, a ∼78 kDa fragment of β-catenin was detected in the detergent soluble fraction, indicating proteolytic cleavage of β-catenin. Immunofluorescence analysis also revealed changes in the pattern of both β-catenin and E-cadherin labeling, suggesting that OTA may alter cell-adhesion. Taken together, these data support the hypothesis that disruption of cell-cell

  13. In vitro study of stem cell communication via gap junctions for fibrocartilage regeneration at entheses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nayak, Bibhukalyan Prasad; Goh, James Cho Hong; Toh, Siew Lok; Satpathy, Gyan Ranjan

    2010-03-01

    Entheses are fibrocartilaginous organs that bridge ligament with bone at their interface and add significant insertional strength. To replace a severely damaged ligament, a tissue-engineered graft preinstalled with interfacial fibrocartilage, which is being regenerated from stem cells, appears to be more promising than ligament-alone graft. Such a concept can be realized by a biomimetic approach of establishing a dynamic communication of stem cells with bone cells and/or ligament fibroblasts in vitro. The current study has two objectives. The first objective is to demonstrate functional coculture of bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMSCs) with mature bone cells/ligament fibroblasts as evidenced by gap-junctional communication in vitro. The second objective is to investigate the role of BMSCs in the regeneration of fibrocartilage within the coculture. Rabbit bone/ligament fibroblasts were dual-stained with DiI-Red and calcein (gap-junction permeable dye), and cocultured with unlabeled BMSCs at fixed ratio (1:10). The functional gap junction was demonstrated by the transfer of calcein from donor to recipient cells that was confirmed and quantified by flow cytometry. Type 2 collagen (cartilage extracellular matrix-specific protein) expressed by the mixed cell lines in the cocultures were estimated by real-time reverse transcription PCR and compared with that of the ligament-bone coculture (control). Significant transfer of calcein into BMSCs was observed and flow cytometry analyses showed a gradual increase in the percentage of BMSCs acquiring calcein with time. Cocultures that included BMSCs expressed significantly more type 2 collagen compared with the control. The current study, for the first time, reported the expression of gap-junctional communication of BMSCs with two adherent cell lines of musculoskeletal system in vitro and also confirmed that incorporation of stem cells augments fibrocartilage regeneration. The results open up a path to envisage a composite

  14. impairs gap junction function causing congenital cataract

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Navya

    2017-03-24

    Mar 24, 2017 ... experiment showed a lower dye diffusion distance of Cx46 V44M cells, ... Studies of connexins show that channel gating and permeability .... have found that connexin assembled into gap junction plaques is not soluble in 1% ..... high glucose reduces gap junction activity in microvascular endothelial cells.

  15. Relative Roles of Gap Junction Channels and Cytoplasm in Cell-to-Cell Diffusion of Fluorescent Tracers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safranyos, Richard G. A.; Caveney, Stanley; Miller, James G.; Petersen, Nils O.

    1987-04-01

    Intercellular (tissue) diffusion of molecules requires cytoplasmic diffusion and diffusion through gap junctional (or cell-to-cell) channels. The rates of tissue and cytoplasmic diffusion of fluorescent tracers, expressed as an effective diffusion coefficient, De, and a cytoplasmic diffusion coefficient, Dcyt, have been measured among the developing epidermal cells of a larval beetle, Tenebrio molitor L., to determine the contribution of the junctional channels to intercellular diffusion. Tracer diffusion was measured by injecting fluorescent tracers into cells and quantitating the rate of subsequent spread into adjacent cells. Cytoplasmic diffusion was determined by fluorescence photobleaching. These experiments show that gap junctional channels constitute approximately 70-80% of the total cell-to-cell resistance to the diffusion of organic tracers at high concentrations in this tissue. At low concentrations, however, the binding of tracer to cytoplasm slows down the cytoplasmic diffusion, which may limit intercellular diffusion.

  16. Methylmercury inhibits gap junctional intercellular communication in primary cultures of rat proximal tubular cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yoshida, Minoru; Sumi, Yawara [Department of Chemistry, St. Marianna University School of Medicine, Kawasagi (Japan); Kujiraoka, Toru [Department of Physiology, St. Marianna University School of Medicine, Kawasagi (Japan); Hara, Masayuki [Department of Anatomy, St. Marianna University School of Medicine, Kawasagi (Japan); Nakazawa, Hirokazu [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Sciences, Meisei University (Japan)

    1998-03-01

    Methylmercury (MeHg) causes renal injury in addition to central and peripheral neuropathy. To clarify the mechanism of nephrotoxicity by MeHg, we investigated the effect of this compound on intercellular communication through gap junction channels in primary cultures of rat renal proximal tubular cells. Twenty minutes after exposure to 30 {mu}M MeHg, gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC), which was assessed by dye coupling, was markedly inhibited before appearance of cytotoxicity. When the medium containing MeHg was exchanged with MeHg-free medium, dye coupling recovered abruptly. However, the dye-coupling was abolished again 30 min after replacement with control medium, and the cells were damaged. Intracellular calcium concentration, [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}, which modulates the function of gap junctions, significantly increased following exposure of the cells to 30 {mu}M MeHg and returned to control level following replacement with MeHg-free medium. These results suggest that the inhibiting effect of MeHg on GJIC is related to the change in [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}, and may be involved in the pathogenesis of renal dysfunction. (orig.) With 5 figs., 23 refs.

  17. Xenobiotic Modulation of Human Mammary Epithelial Cell Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication and Growth

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ruch, Randall

    1999-01-01

    .... These agents also inhibit gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC). This inhibition may contribute to the enhancement of breast epithelial growth and breast cancer formation by xenobiotics...

  18. The beneficial effects of cumulus cells and oocyte-cumulus cell gap junctions depends on oocyte maturation and fertilization methods in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng-Jie Zhou

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Cumulus cells are a group of closely associated granulosa cells that surround and nourish oocytes. Previous studies have shown that cumulus cells contribute to oocyte maturation and fertilization through gap junction communication. However, it is not known how this gap junction signaling affects in vivo versus in vitro maturation of oocytes, and their subsequent fertilization and embryonic development following insemination. Therefore, in our study, we performed mouse oocyte maturation and insemination using in vivo- or in vitro-matured oocyte-cumulus complexes (OCCs, which retain gap junctions between the cumulus cells and the oocytes, in vitro-matured, denuded oocytes co-cultured with cumulus cells (DCs, which lack gap junctions between the cumulus cells and the oocytes, and in vitro-matured, denuded oocytes without cumulus cells (DOs. Using these models, we were able to analyze the effects of gap junction signaling on oocyte maturation, fertilization, and early embryo development. We found that gap junctions were necessary for both in vivo and in vitro oocyte maturation. In addition, for oocytes matured in vivo, the presence of cumulus cells during insemination improved fertilization and blastocyst formation, and this improvement was strengthened by gap junctions. Moreover, for oocytes matured in vitro, the presence of cumulus cells during insemination improved fertilization, but not blastocyst formation, and this improvement was independent of gap junctions. Our results demonstrate, for the first time, that the beneficial effect of gap junction signaling from cumulus cells depends on oocyte maturation and fertilization methods.

  19. Gap junctions and connexin-interacting proteins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giepmans, Ben N G

    2004-01-01

    Gap junctions form channels between adjacent cells. The core proteins of these channels are the connexins. Regulation of gap junction communication (GJC) can be modulated by connexin-associating proteins, such as regulatory protein phosphatases and protein kinases, of which c-Src is the

  20. impairs gap junction function causing congenital cataract

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    LIJUAN CHEN

    2017-12-20

    Dec 20, 2017 ... showed a lower dye diffusion distance of Cx46 V44M cells, which indicates that the gap junction intercellular ... permeability could be affected by alterations of charged residues of .... bled into gap junction plaques is not soluble in 1% Triton ..... regulation of connexin 43 expression by high glucose reduces.

  1. Gap junctions and motor behavior

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiehn, Ole; Tresch, Matthew C.

    2002-01-01

    The production of any motor behavior requires coordinated activity in motor neurons and premotor networks. In vertebrates, this coordination is often assumed to take place through chemical synapses. Here we review recent data suggesting that electrical gap-junction coupling plays an important role...... in coordinating and generating motor outputs in embryonic and early postnatal life. Considering the recent demonstration of a prevalent expression of gap-junction proteins and gap-junction structures in the adult mammalian spinal cord, we suggest that neuronal gap-junction coupling might also contribute...... to the production of motor behavior in adult mammals....

  2. Activation of L-type calcium channels is required for gap junction-mediated intercellular calcium signaling in osteoblastic cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Niklas Rye; Teilmann, Stefan Cuoni; Henriksen, Zanne

    2003-01-01

    The propagation of mechanically induced intercellular calcium waves (ICW) among osteoblastic cells occurs both by activation of P2Y (purinergic) receptors by extracellular nucleotides, resulting in "fast" ICW, and by gap junctional communication in cells that express connexin43 (Cx43), resulting...... in "slow" ICW. Human osteoblastic cells transmit intercellular calcium signals by both of these mechanisms. In the current studies we have examined the mechanism of slow gap junction-dependent ICW in osteoblastic cells. In ROS rat osteoblastic cells, gap junction-dependent ICW were inhibited by removal...... of extracellular calcium, plasma membrane depolarization by high extracellular potassium, and the L-type voltage-operated calcium channel inhibitor, nifedipine. In contrast, all these treatments enhanced the spread of P2 receptor-mediated ICW in UMR rat osteoblastic cells. Using UMR cells transfected to express Cx...

  3. Non-genotoxic carcinogens: early effects on gap junctions, cell proliferation and apoptosis in the rat

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mally, Angela; Chipman, James Kevin

    2002-01-01

    Non-genotoxic carcinogens are thought to induce tumour formation by disturbing the balance between cell growth and cell death. Gap junctions (GJ) contribute to the maintenance of tissue homeostasis by allowing the intercellular exchange of growth regulatory signals and potential inhibition of GJ intercellular communication through loss of connexin (Cx) plaques has been shown to be involved in the cancer process. We have investigated the time- and dose-dependent effects of the non-genotoxic hepatocarcinogens Wy-14,643, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin, methapyrilene and hexachlorobenzene and the male rat kidney carcinogens chloroform, p-dichlorobenzene and d-limonene on gap junction plaque expression in relation to proliferation and apoptosis. With the exception of limonene, all non-genotoxic carcinogens significantly reduced the expression of GJ plaques containing Cx32 in their respective target tissue. No dose-dependent, significant effects were seen in non-target organs. Although alteration of Cx32 expression did not appear to correlate with induction of cell proliferation, out data suggest that the interaction of both processes--interference of GJ coupled with a proliferative stimulus (at the carcinogenic dose)--may be important in non-genotoxic carcinogenesis and provide a potential alert for non-genotoxic carcinogens in short-term toxicity tests

  4. Influence of drugs on gap junctions in glioma cell lines and primary astrocytes in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zahra eMoinfar

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Gap junctions (GJs are hemichannels on cell membrane. Once they are intercellulary connected to the neighboring cells, they build a functional syncytium which allows rapid transfer of ions and molecules between cells. This characteristic makes GJs a potential modulator in proliferation, migration and development of the cells. So far, several types of GJs are recognized on different brain cells as well as in glioma. Astrocytes, as one of the major cells that maintain neuronal homeostasis, express different types of GJs that let them communicate with neurons, oligodendrocytes and endothelial cells of the blood brain barrier; however, the main GJ in astrocytes is connexin 43. There are different cerebral diseases in which astrocyte GJs might play a role. Several drugs have been reported to modulate gap junctional communication in the brain which can consequently have beneficial or detrimental effects on the course of treatment in certain diseases. However, the exact cellular mechanism behind those pharmaceutical efficacies on GJs is not well-understood. Accordingly, how specific drugs would affect GJs and what some consequent specific brain diseases would be are the interests of the authors of this chapter. We would focus on pharmaceutical effects on GJs on astrocytes in specific diseases where GJs could possibly play a role including: 1 migraine and a novel therapy for migraine with aura, 2 neuroautoimmune diseases and immunomodulatory drugs in the treatment of demyelinating diseases of the central nervous system such as multiple sclerosis, 3 glioma and antineoplastic and anti-inflammatory agents that are used in treating brain tumors and 4 epilepsy and anticonvulsants that are widely used for seizures therapy. All of the above-mentioned therapeutic categories can possibly affect GJs expression of astrocytes and the role is discussed in the upcoming chapter.

  5. Pannexin-1 channels show distinct morphology and no gap junction characteristics in mammalian cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckmann, Anja; Grissmer, Alexander; Krause, Elmar; Tschernig, Thomas; Meier, Carola

    2016-03-01

    Pannexins (Panx) are proteins with a similar membrane topology to connexins, the integral membrane protein of gap junctions. Panx1 channels are generally of major importance in a large number of system and cellular processes and their function has been thoroughly characterized. In contrast, little is known about channel structure and subcellular distribution. We therefore determine the subcellular localization of Panx1 channels in cultured cells and aim at the identification of channel morphology in vitro. Using freeze-fracture replica immunolabeling on EYFP-Panx1-overexpressing HEK 293 cells, large particles were identified in plasma membranes, which were immunogold-labeled using either GFP or Panx1 antibodies. There was no labeling or particles in the nuclear membranes of these cells, pointing to plasma membrane localization of Panx1-EYFP channels. The assembly of particles was irregular, this being in contrast to the regular pattern of gap junctions. The fact that no counterparts were identified on apposing cells, which would have been indicative of intercellular signaling, supported the idea of Panx1 channels within one membrane. Control cells (transfected with EYFP only, non-transfected) were devoid of both particles and immunogold labeling. Altogether, this study provides the first demonstration of Panx1 channel morphology and assembly in intact cells. The identification of Panx1 channels as large particles within the plasma membrane provides the knowledge required to enable recognition of Panx1 channels in tissues in future studies. Thus, these results open up new avenues for the detailed analysis of the subcellular localization of Panx1 and of its nearest neighbors such as purinergic receptors in vivo.

  6. Astrocytes protect glioma cells from chemotherapy and upregulate survival genes via gap junctional communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Qingtang; Liu, Zhao; Ling, Feng; Xu, Geng

    2016-02-01

    Gliomas are the most common type of primary brain tumor. Using current standard treatment regimens, the prognosis of patients with gliomas remains poor, which is predominantly due to the resistance of glioma cells to chemotherapy. The organ microenvironment has been implicated in the pathogenesis and survival of tumor cells. Thus, the aim of the present study was to test the hypothesis that astrocytes (the housekeeping cells of the brain microenvironment) may protect glioma cells from chemotherapy and to investigate the underlying mechanism. Immunofluorescent and scanning electron microscopy demonstrated that glioma cells were surrounded and infiltrated by activated astrocytes. In vitro co-culture of glioma cells with astrocytes significantly reduced the cytotoxic effects on glioma cells caused by various chemotherapeutic agents, as demonstrated by fluorescein isothiocyanate-propidium iodide flow cytometry. Transwell experiments indicated that this protective effect was dependent on physical contact and the gap junctional communication (GJC) between astrocytes and glioma cells. Microarray expression profiling further revealed that astrocytes upregulated the expression levels of various critical survival genes in the glioma cells via GJC. The results of the present study indicated that the organ microenvironment may affect the biological behavior of tumor cells and suggest a novel mechanism of resistance in glioma cells, which may be of therapeutic relevance clinically.

  7. GABA and Gap Junctions in the Development of Synchronized Activity in Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Neural Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meeri Eeva-Liisa Mäkinen

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The electrical activity of the brain arises from single neurons communicating with each other. However, how single neurons interact during early development to give rise to neural network activity remains poorly understood. We studied the emergence of synchronous neural activity in human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC-derived neural networks simultaneously on a single-neuron level and network level. The contribution of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA and gap junctions to the development of synchronous activity in hPSC-derived neural networks was studied with GABA agonist and antagonist and by blocking gap junctional communication, respectively. We characterized the dynamics of the network-wide synchrony in hPSC-derived neural networks with high spatial resolution (calcium imaging and temporal resolution microelectrode array (MEA. We found that the emergence of synchrony correlates with a decrease in very strong GABA excitation. However, the synchronous network was found to consist of a heterogeneous mixture of synchronously active cells with variable responses to GABA, GABA agonists and gap junction blockers. Furthermore, we show how single-cell distributions give rise to the network effect of GABA, GABA agonists and gap junction blockers. Finally, based on our observations, we suggest that the earliest form of synchronous neuronal activity depends on gap junctions and a decrease in GABA induced depolarization but not on GABAA mediated signaling.

  8. GABA and Gap Junctions in the Development of Synchronized Activity in Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Neural Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mäkinen, Meeri Eeva-Liisa; Ylä-Outinen, Laura; Narkilahti, Susanna

    2018-01-01

    The electrical activity of the brain arises from single neurons communicating with each other. However, how single neurons interact during early development to give rise to neural network activity remains poorly understood. We studied the emergence of synchronous neural activity in human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC)-derived neural networks simultaneously on a single-neuron level and network level. The contribution of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and gap junctions to the development of synchronous activity in hPSC-derived neural networks was studied with GABA agonist and antagonist and by blocking gap junctional communication, respectively. We characterized the dynamics of the network-wide synchrony in hPSC-derived neural networks with high spatial resolution (calcium imaging) and temporal resolution microelectrode array (MEA). We found that the emergence of synchrony correlates with a decrease in very strong GABA excitation. However, the synchronous network was found to consist of a heterogeneous mixture of synchronously active cells with variable responses to GABA, GABA agonists and gap junction blockers. Furthermore, we show how single-cell distributions give rise to the network effect of GABA, GABA agonists and gap junction blockers. Finally, based on our observations, we suggest that the earliest form of synchronous neuronal activity depends on gap junctions and a decrease in GABA induced depolarization but not on GABAA mediated signaling. PMID:29559893

  9. Functional assessment of gap junctions in monolayer and three-dimensional cultures of human tendon cells using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching

    OpenAIRE

    Kuzma-Kuzniarska, Maria; Yapp, Clarence; Pearson-Jones, Thomas W.; Jones, Andrew K.; Hulley, Philippa A.

    2014-01-01

    Gap junction-mediated intercellular communication influences a variety of cellular activities. In tendons, gap junctions modulate collagen production, are involved in strain-induced cell death, and are involved in the response to mechanical stimulation. The aim of the present study was to investigate gap junction-mediated intercellular communication in healthy human tendon-derived cells using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP). The FRAP is a noninvasive technique that allows qu...

  10. Joint diseases: from connexins to gap junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donahue, Henry J; Qu, Roy W; Genetos, Damian C

    2017-12-19

    Connexons form the basis of hemichannels and gap junctions. They are composed of six tetraspan proteins called connexins. Connexons can function as individual hemichannels, releasing cytosolic factors (such as ATP) into the pericellular environment. Alternatively, two hemichannel connexons from neighbouring cells can come together to form gap junctions, membrane-spanning channels that facilitate cell-cell communication by enabling signalling molecules of approximately 1 kDa to pass from one cell to an adjacent cell. Connexins are expressed in joint tissues including bone, cartilage, skeletal muscle and the synovium. Indicative of their importance as gap junction components, connexins are also known as gap junction proteins, but individual connexin proteins are gaining recognition for their channel-independent roles, which include scaffolding and signalling functions. Considerable evidence indicates that connexons contribute to the function of bone and muscle, but less is known about the function of connexons in other joint tissues. However, the implication that connexins and gap junctional channels might be involved in joint disease, including age-related bone loss, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, emphasizes the need for further research into these areas and highlights the therapeutic potential of connexins.

  11. Extract from the Zooxanthellate Jellyfish Cotylorhiza tuberculata Modulates Gap Junction Intercellular Communication in Human Cell Cultures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Piraino

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available On a global scale, jellyfish populations in coastal marine ecosystems exhibit increasing trends of abundance. High-density outbreaks may directly or indirectly affect human economical and recreational activities, as well as public health. As the interest in biology of marine jellyfish grows, a number of jellyfish metabolites with healthy potential, such as anticancer or antioxidant activities, is increasingly reported. In this study, the Mediterranean “fried egg jellyfish” Cotylorhiza tuberculata (Macri, 1778 has been targeted in the search forputative valuable bioactive compounds. A medusa extract was obtained, fractionated, characterized by HPLC, GC-MS and SDS-PAGE and assayed for its biological activity on breast cancer cells (MCF-7 and human epidermal keratinocytes (HEKa. The composition of the jellyfish extract included photosynthetic pigments, valuable ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acids, and polypeptides derived either from jellyfish tissues and their algal symbionts. Extract fractions showed antioxidant activity and the ability to affect cell viability and intercellular communication mediated by gap junctions (GJIC differentially in MCF-7and HEKa cells. A significantly higher cytotoxicity and GJIC enhancement in MCF-7 compared to HEKa cells was recorded. A putative action mechanism for the anticancer bioactivity through the modulation of GJIC has been hypothesized and its nutraceutical and pharmaceutical potential was discussed.

  12. Bipolar cell gap junctions serve major signaling pathways in the human retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kántor, Orsolya; Varga, Alexandra; Nitschke, Roland; Naumann, Angela; Énzsöly, Anna; Lukáts, Ákos; Szabó, Arnold; Németh, János; Völgyi, Béla

    2017-08-01

    Connexin36 (Cx36) constituent gap junctions (GJ) throughout the brain connect neurons into functional syncytia. In the retina they underlie the transmission, averaging and correlation of signals prior conveying visual information to the brain. This is the first study that describes retinal bipolar cell (BC) GJs in the human inner retina, whose function is enigmatic even in the examined animal models. Furthermore, a number of unique features (e.g. fovea, trichromacy, midget system) necessitate a reexamination of the animal model results in the human retina. Well-preserved postmortem human samples of this study are allowed to identify Cx36 expressing BCs neurochemically. Results reveal that both rod and cone pathway interneurons display strong Cx36 expression. Rod BC inputs to AII amacrine cells (AC) appear in juxtaposition to AII GJs, thus suggesting a strategic AII cell targeting by rod BCs. Cone BCs serving midget, parasol or koniocellular signaling pathways display a wealth of Cx36 expression to form homologously coupled arrays. In addition, they also establish heterologous GJ contacts to serve an exchange of information between parallel signaling streams. Interestingly, a prominent Cx36 expression was exhibited by midget system BCs that appear to maintain intimate contacts with bistratified BCs serving other pathways. These findings suggest that BC GJs in parallel signaling streams serve both an intra- and inter-pathway exchange of signals in the human retina.

  13. Estrogenic compounds inhibit gap junctional intercellular communication in mouse Leydig TM3 cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Iwase, Yumiko; Fukata, Hideki; Mori, Chisato

    2006-01-01

    Some estrogenic compounds are reported to cause testicular disorders in humans and/or experimental animals by direct action on Leydig cells. In carcinogenesis and normal development, gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) plays an essential role in maintaining homeostasis. In this study, we examine the effects of diethylstilbestrol (DES, a synthetic estrogen), 17β-estradiol (E 2 , a natural estrogen), and genistein (GEN, a phytoestrogen) on GJIC between mouse Leydig TM3 cells using Lucifer yellow microinjection. The three compounds tested produced GJIC inhibition in the TM3 cells after 24 h. Gradually, 10 μM DES began to inhibit GJIC for 24 h and this effect was observed until 72 h. On the other hand, both 20 μM E 2 and 25 μM GEN rapidly inhibited GJIC in 6 h and 2 h, respectively. The effects continued until 24 h, but weakened by 72 h. Furthermore, a combined effect at μM level between DES and E 2 on GJIC inhibition was observed, but not between GEN and E 2 . DES and E 2 showed GJIC inhibition at low dose levels (nearly physiological estrogen levels) after 72 h, but GEN did not. DES-induced GJIC inhibition at 10 pM and 10 μM was completely counteracted by ICI 182,780 (ICl), an estrogen receptor antagonist. On the other hand, the inhibitory effects on GJIC with E 2 (10 pM and 20 μM) and GEN (25 μM) were partially blocked by ICI or calphostin C, a protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor, and were completely blocked by the combination of ICI and calphostin C. These results demonstrate that DES inhibits GJIC between Leydig cells via the estrogen receptor (ER), and that E 2 and GEN inhibit GJIC via ER and PKC. These estrogenic compounds may have different individual nongenotoxic mechanism including PKC pathway on testicular carcinogenesis or development

  14. Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication and Breast Cancer Metastasis to Bone

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Donahue, Henry

    2001-01-01

    .... We found that: 1) expressing the metastasis suppressing gene BRMS1 in diverse cancer cell lines, including breast and melanoma, restores homotypic gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC); 2...

  15. Stat3 is a positive regulator of gap junctional intercellular communication in cultured, human lung carcinoma cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geletu Mulu

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Neoplastic transformation of cultured cells by a number of oncogenes such as src suppresses gap junctional, intercellular communication (GJIC; however, the role of Src and its effector Signal transducer and activator of transcription-3 (Stat3 upon GJIC in non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC has not been defined. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed high Src activity in NSCLC biopsy samples compared to normal tissues. Here we explored the potential effect of Src and Stat3 upon GJIC, by assessing the levels of tyr418-phosphorylated Src and tyr705-phosphorylated Stat3, respectively, in a panel of NSCLC cell lines. Methods Gap junctional communication was examined by electroporating the fluorescent dye Lucifer yellow into cells grown on a transparent electrode, followed by observation of the migration of the dye to the adjacent, non-electroporated cells under fluorescence illumination. Results An inverse relationship between Src activity levels and GJIC was noted; in five lines with high Src activity GJIC was absent, while two lines with extensive GJIC (QU-DB and SK-LuCi6 had low Src levels, similar to a non-transformed, immortalised lung epithelial cell line. Interestingly, examination of the mechanism indicated that Stat3 inhibition in any of the NSCLC lines expressing high endogenous Src activity levels, or in cells where Src was exogenously transduced, did not restore GJIC. On the contrary, Stat3 downregulation in immortalised lung epithelial cells or in the NSCLC lines displaying extensive GJIC actually suppressed junctional permeability. Conclusions Our findings demonstrate that although Stat3 is generally growth promoting and in an activated form it can act as an oncogene, it is actually required for gap junctional communication both in nontransformed lung epithelial cells and in certain lung cancer lines that retain extensive GJIC.

  16. Gap junction diseases of the skin.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Steensel, M.A.M. van

    2004-01-01

    Gap junctions are intercellular channels that allow the passage of water, ions, and small molecules. They are involved in quick, short-range messaging between cells and are found in skin, nervous tissue, heart, and muscle. An increasing number of hereditary skin disorders appear to be caused by

  17. Rescue of perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS)-mediated Sertoli cell injury by overexpression of gap junction protein connexin 43

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Nan; Mruk, Dolores D.; Chen, Haiqi; Wong, Chris K. C.; Lee, Will M.; Cheng, C. Yan

    2016-07-01

    Perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) is an environmental toxicant used in developing countries, including China, as a stain repellent for clothing, carpets and draperies, but it has been banned in the U.S. and Canada since the late 2000s. PFOS perturbed the Sertoli cell tight junction (TJ)-permeability barrier, causing disruption of actin microfilaments in cell cytosol, perturbing the localization of cell junction proteins (e.g., occluden-ZO-1, N-cadherin-ß-catenin). These changes destabilized Sertoli cell blood-testis barrier (BTB) integrity. These findings suggest that human exposure to PFOS might induce BTB dysfunction and infertility. Interestingly, PFOS-induced Sertoli cell injury associated with a down-regulation of the gap junction (GJ) protein connexin43 (Cx43). We next investigated if overexpression of Cx43 in Sertoli cells could rescue the PFOS-induced cell injury. Indeed, overexpression of Cx43 in Sertoli cells with an established TJ-barrier blocked the disruption in PFOS-induced GJ-intercellular communication, resulting in the re-organization of actin microfilaments, which rendered them similar to those in control cells. Furthermore, cell adhesion proteins that utilized F-actin for attachment became properly distributed at the cell-cell interface, resealing the disrupted TJ-barrier. In summary, Cx43 is a good target that might be used to manage PFOS-induced reproductive dysfunction.

  18. Visfatin Reduces Gap Junction Mediated Cell-to-Cell Communication in Proximal Tubule-Derived Epithelial Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire E. Hills

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: In the current study we examined if the adipocytokine, visfatin, alters connexin-mediated intercellular communication in proximal tubule-derived epithelial cells. Methods: The effects of visfatin (10-200ng/mL on cell viability and cytotoxicity in HK2-cells were assessed by MTT, crystal violet and lactate dehydrogenase assays. Western blot analysis was used to confirm expression of Cx26, Cx40 and Cx43. The effect of visfatin (10-200ng/mL on TGF-β1 secretion was confirmed by ELISA, and the effects of both TGF-β1 (2-10ng/mL and visfatin (10-200ng/mL on connexin expression were assessed by western blot. Functional intercellular communication was determined using transfer of Lucifer Yellow and paired-whole cell patch clamp electrophysiology. Results: In low glucose (5mM, visfatin (10-200ng/mL did not affect membrane integrity, cytotoxicity or cell viability at 48hrs, but did evoke a concentration-dependent reduction in Cx26 and Cx43 expression. The expression of Cx40 was unaffected. At 48hrs, visfatin (10-200ng/mL increased the secretion of TGF-β1 and the visfatin-evoked changes in connexin expression were mimicked by exogenous application of the pro-fibrotic cytokine (2-10ng/ml. Visfatin reduced dye transfer between coupled cells and decreased functional conductance, with levels falling by 63% as compared to control. Although input resistance was increased following visfatin treatment by 166%, the change was not significant as compared to control. The effects of visfatin on Cx-expression and cell-coupling were blocked in the presence of a TGF-β1 specific neutralizing antibody. Conclusions: The adipocytokine visfatin selectively evoked a non-toxic reduction in connexin expression in HK2-cells. The loss in gap-junction associated proteins was mirrored by a loss in functional conductance between coupled cells. Visfatin increased TGF-β secretion and the pattern of change for connexins expression was mimicked by exogenous

  19. INHIBITION OF GAP JUNCTIONAL INTERCELLULAR COMMUNICATION BY PERFLUORINATED COMPOUNDS IN RAT LIVER AND DOLPHIN KIDNEY EPITHELIAL CELL LINES IN VITRO AND SPRAGUE-DAWLEY RATS IN VIVO

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abstract Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication (GJIC) is the major pathway of intercellular signal transduction, and is, thus, important for normal cell growth and function. Recent studies have revealed a global distribution of some perfluorinated organic compounds e...

  20. 17β estradiol regulation of connexin 43-based gap junction and mechanosensitivity through classical estrogen receptor pathway in osteocyte-like MLO-Y4 cells.

    KAUST Repository

    Ren, Jian; Wang, Xuhui; Wang, Guangchao; Wu, Junhua

    2013-01-01

    Connexin 43 (Cx43) plays an essential role in osteocyte mechanotransduction. Although estrogen involves in the adaptive responses of bone cells to mechanical loadings, its effects on osteocytic Cx43-based gap junction intercellular communication

  1. HDAC inhibition amplifies gap junction communication in neural progenitors: Potential for cell-mediated enzyme prodrug therapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, Zahidul; Akhtar, Monira; Asklund, Thomas; Juliusson, Bengt; Almqvist, Per M.; Ekstroem, Tomas J.

    2007-01-01

    Enzyme prodrug therapy using neural progenitor cells (NPCs) as delivery vehicles has been applied in animal models of gliomas and relies on gap junction communication (GJC) between delivery and target cells. This study investigated the effects of histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors on GJC for the purpose of facilitating transfer of therapeutic molecules from recombinant NPCs. We studied a novel immortalized midbrain cell line, NGC-407 of embryonic human origin having neural precursor characteristics, as a potential delivery vehicle. The expression of gap junction protein connexin 43 (C x 43) was analyzed by western blot and immunocytochemistry. While C x 43 levels were decreased in untreated differentiating NGC-407 cells, the HDAC inhibitor 4-phenylbutyrate (4-PB) increased C x 43 expression along with increased membranous deposition in both proliferating and differentiating cells. Simultaneously, Ser 279/282-phosphorylated form of C x 43 was declined in both culture conditions by 4-PB. The 4-PB effect in NGC-407 cells was verified by using HNSC.100 human neural progenitors and Trichostatin A. Improved functional GJC is of imperative importance for therapeutic strategies involving intercellular transport of low molecular-weight compounds. We show here an enhancement by 4-PB, of the functional GJC among NGC-407 cells, as well as between NGC-407 and human glioma cells, as indicated by increased fluorescent dye transfer

  2. Role of Myoendothelial Gap Junctions in the Regulation of Human Coronary Artery Smooth Muscle Cell Differentiation by Laminar Shear Stress

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zongqi Zhang

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Smooth muscle cells may dedifferentiate into the synthetic phenotype and promote atherosclerosis. Here, we explored the role of myoendothelial gap junctions in phenotypic switching of human coronary artery smooth muscle cells (HCASMCs co-cultured with human coronary artery endothelial cells (HCAECs exposed to shear stress. Methods: HCASMCs and HCAECs were seeded on opposite sides of Transwell inserts, and HCAECs were exposed to laminar shear stress of 12 dyn/cm2 or 5 dyn/cm2. The myoendothelial gap junctions were evaluated by using a multi-photon microscope. Results: In co-culture with HCAECs, HCASMCs exhibited a contractile phenotype, and maintained the expression of differentiation markers MHC and H1-calponin. HCASMCs and HCAECs formed functional intercellular junctions, as evidenced by colocalization of connexin(Cx40 and Cx43 on cellular projections inside the Transwell membrane and biocytin transfer from HCAECs to HCASMCs. Cx40 siRNA and 18-α-GA attenuated protein expression of MHC and H1-calponin in HCASMCs. Shear stress of 5 dyn/cm2 increased Cx43 and decreased Cx40 expression in HCAECs, and partly inhibited biocytin transfer from HCAECs to HCASMCs, which could be completely blocked by Cx43 siRNA or restored by Cx40 DNA transfected into HCAECs. The exposure of HCAECs to shear stress of 5 dyn/cm2 promoted HCASMC phenotypic switching, manifested by morphological changes, decrease in MHC and H1-calponin expression, and increase in platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF-BB release, which was partly rescued by Cx43 siRNA or Cx40 DNA or PDGF receptor signaling inhibitor. Conclusions: The exposure of HCAECs to shear stress of 5 dyn/cm2 caused the dysfunction of Cx40/Cx43 heterotypic myoendothelial gap junctions, which may be replaced by homotypic Cx43/Cx43 channels, and induced HCASMC transition to the synthetic phenotype associated with the activation of PDGF receptor signaling, which may contribute to shear stress

  3. Gap junction protein connexin-43 interacts directly with microtubules

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giepmans, B N; Verlaan, I; Hengeveld, T; Janssen, H; Calafat, J; Falk, M M; Moolenaar, W H

    2001-01-01

    Gap junctions are specialized cell-cell junctions that mediate intercellular communication. They are composed of connexin proteins, which form transmembrane channels for small molecules [1, 2]. The C-terminal tail of connexin-43 (Cx43), the most widely expressed connexin member, has been implicated

  4. Heavy-ion-induced bystander killing of human lung cancer cells. Role of gap junctional intercellular communication

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harada, Kosaku; Nonaka, Tetsuo; Hamada, Nobuyuki; Sakurai, Hideyuki; Hasegawa, Masatoshi; Kobayashi, Yasuhiko; Nakano, Takashi; Funayama, Tomoo; Kakizaki, Takehiko

    2009-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to clarify the mechanisms of cell death induced by heavy-ion irradiation focusing on the bystander effect in human lung cancer A549 cells. In microbeam irradiation, each of 1, 5, and 25 cells under confluent cell conditions was irradiated with 1, 5, or 10 particles of carbon ions (220 MeV), and then the surviving fraction of the population was measured by a clonogenic assay in order to investigate the bystander effect of heavy-ions. In this experiment, the limited number of cells (0.0001-0.002%, 5-25 cells) under confluent cell conditions irradiated with 5 or 10 carbon ions resulted in an exaggerated 8-14% increase in cell death by clonogenic assay. However, these overshooting responses were not observed under exponentially growing cell conditions. Furthermore, these responses were inhibited in cells treated with an inhibitor of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC), whereas they were markedly enhanced by the addition of a stimulator of GJIC. The present results suggest that bystander cell killing by heavy-ions was induced mainly by direct cell-to-cell communication, such as GJIC, which might play important roles in bystander responses. (author)

  5. Autophagy and gap junctional intercellular communication inhibition are involved in cadmium-induced apoptosis in rat liver cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zou, Hui [College of Veterinary Medicine, Yangzhou University, and Jiangsu Co-innovation Center for Prevention and Control of Important Animal Infectious Diseases and Zoonoses, Yangzhou, Jiangsu, 225009 (China); Zhuo, Liling [College of Life Science, Zaozhuang University, Zaozhuang, Shandong, 277160 (China); Han, Tao; Hu, Di; Yang, Xiaokang; Wang, Yi; Yuan, Yan; Gu, Jianhong; Bian, Jianchun; Liu, Xuezhong [College of Veterinary Medicine, Yangzhou University, and Jiangsu Co-innovation Center for Prevention and Control of Important Animal Infectious Diseases and Zoonoses, Yangzhou, Jiangsu, 225009 (China); Liu, Zongping, E-mail: liuzongping@yzu.edu.cn [College of Veterinary Medicine, Yangzhou University, and Jiangsu Co-innovation Center for Prevention and Control of Important Animal Infectious Diseases and Zoonoses, Yangzhou, Jiangsu, 225009 (China)

    2015-04-17

    Cadmium (Cd) is known to induce hepatotoxicity, yet the underlying mechanism of how this occurs is not fully understood. In this study, Cd-induced apoptosis was demonstrated in rat liver cells (BRL 3A) with apoptotic nuclear morphological changes and a decrease in cell index (CI) in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. The role of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) and autophagy in Cd-induced apoptosis was investigated. Cd significantly induced GJIC inhibition as well as downregulation of connexin 43 (Cx43). The prototypical gap junction blocker carbenoxolone disodium (CBX) exacerbated the Cd-induced decrease in CI. Cd treatment was also found to cause autophagy, with an increase in mRNA expression of autophagy-related genes Atg-5, Atg-7, Beclin-1, and microtubule-associated protein light chain 3 (LC3) conversion from cytosolic LC3-I to membrane-bound LC3-II. The autophagic inducer rapamycin (RAP) prevented the Cd-induced CI decrease, while the autophagic inhibitor chloroquine (CQ) caused a further reduction in CI. In addition, CBX promoted Cd-induced autophagy, as well as changes in expression of Atg-5, Atg-7, Beclin-1 and LC3. CQ was found to block the Cd-induced decrease in Cx43 and GJIC inhibition, whereas RAP had opposite effect. These results demonstrate that autophagy plays a protective role during Cd-induced apoptosis in BRL 3A cells during 6 h of experiment, while autophagy exacerbates Cd-induced GJIC inhibition which has a negative effect on cellular fate. - Highlights: • GJIC and autophagy is crucial for biological processes. • Cd exposure causes GJIC inhibition and autophagy increase in BRL 3A cells. • Autophagy protects Cd induced BRL 3A cells apoptosis at an early stage. • Autophagy exacerbates Cd-induced GJIC inhibition. • GJIC plays an important role in autophagy induced cell death or survival.

  6. Gap Junctions and Cancer: Communicating for 50 Years’

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aasen, Trond; Mesnil, Marc; Naus, Christian C.; Lampe, Paul D.; Laird, Dale W.

    2017-01-01

    Fifty years ago, tumour cells were found to lack electrical coupling, leading to the hypothesis that loss of direct intercellular communication is commonly associated with cancer onset and progression. Subsequent studies linked this phenomenon to gap junctions composed of connexin proteins. While many studies support the notion that connexins are tumour suppressors, recent evidence suggests that, in some tumour types, they may facilitate specific stages of tumour progression through both junctional and non-junctional signalling pathways. This Timeline article highlights the milestones connecting gap junctions to cancer, and underscores important unanswered questions, controversies and therapeutic opportunities in the field. PMID:27782134

  7. GAP junctional communication in brain secondary organizers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosone, Camilla; Andreu, Abraham; Echevarria, Diego

    2016-06-01

    Gap junctions (GJs) are integral membrane proteins that enable the direct cytoplasmic exchange of ions and low molecular weight metabolites between adjacent cells. They are formed by the apposition of two connexons belonging to adjacent cells. Each connexon is formed by six proteins, named connexins (Cxs). Current evidence suggests that gap junctions play an important part in ensuring normal embryo development. Mutations in connexin genes have been linked to a variety of human diseases, although the precise role and the cell biological mechanisms of their action remain almost unknown. Among the big family of Cxs, several are expressed in nervous tissue but just a few are expressed in the anterior neural tube of vertebrates. Many efforts have been made to elucidate the molecular bases of Cxs cell biology and how they influence the morphogenetic signal activity produced by brain signaling centers. These centers, orchestrated by transcription factors and morphogenes determine the axial patterning of the mammalian brain during its specification and regionalization. The present review revisits the findings of GJ composed by Cx43 and Cx36 in neural tube patterning and discuss Cx43 putative enrollment in the control of Fgf8 signal activity coming from the well known secondary organizer, the isthmic organizer. © 2016 The Authors. Development, Growth & Differentiation published by John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd on behalf of Japanese Society of Developmental Biologists.

  8. Modulatory effects of cAMP and PKC activation on gap junctional intercellular communication among thymic epithelial cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neves-dos-Santos Sandra

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We investigated the effects of the signaling molecules, cyclic AMP (cAMP and protein-kinase C (PKC, on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC between thymic epithelial cells (TEC. Results Treatment with 8-Br-cAMP, a cAMP analog; or forskolin, which stimulates cAMP production, resulted in an increase in dye transfer between adjacent TEC, inducing a three-fold enhancement in the mean fluorescence of coupled cells, ascertained by flow cytometry after calcein transfer. These treatments also increased Cx43 mRNA expression, and stimulated Cx43 protein accumulation in regions of intercellular contacts. VIP, adenosine, and epinephrine which may also signal through cyclic nucleotides were tested. The first two molecules did not mimic the effects of 8-Br-cAMP, however epinephrine was able to increase GJIC suggesting that this molecule functions as an endogenous inter-TEC GJIC modulators. Stimulation of PKC by phorbol-myristate-acetate inhibited inter-TEC GJIC. Importantly, both the enhancing and the decreasing effects, respectively induced by cAMP and PKC, were observed in both mouse and human TEC preparations. Lastly, experiments using mouse thymocyte/TEC heterocellular co-cultures suggested that the presence of thymocytes does not affect the degree of inter-TEC GJIC. Conclusions Overall, our data indicate that cAMP and PKC intracellular pathways are involved in the homeostatic control of the gap junction-mediated communication in the thymic epithelium, exerting respectively a positive and negative role upon cell coupling. This control is phylogenetically conserved in the thymus, since it was seen in both mouse and human TEC preparations. Lastly, our work provides new clues for a better understanding of how the thymic epithelial network can work as a physiological syncytium.

  9. Ischemic preconditioning protects against gap junctional uncoupling in cardiac myofibroblasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundset, Rune; Cooper, Marie; Mikalsen, Svein-Ole; Ytrehus, Kirsti

    2004-01-01

    Ischemic preconditioning increases the heart's tolerance to a subsequent longer ischemic period. The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of gap junction communication in simulated preconditioning in cultured neonatal rat cardiac myofibroblasts. Gap junctional intercellular communication was assessed by Lucifer yellow dye transfer. Preconditioning preserved intercellular coupling after prolonged ischemia. An initial reduction in coupling in response to the preconditioning stimulus was also observed. This may protect neighboring cells from damaging substances produced during subsequent regional ischemia in vivo, and may preserve gap junctional communication required for enhanced functional recovery during subsequent reperfusion.

  10. Terbinafine inhibits gap junctional intercellular communication

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Ju Yeun; Yoon, Sei Mee; Choi, Eun Ju; Lee, Jinu

    2016-01-01

    Terbinafine is an antifungal agent that selectively inhibits fungal sterol synthesis by blocking squalene epoxidase. We evaluated the effect of terbinafine on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC). Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) and I-YFP GJIC assays revealed that terbinafine inhibits GJIC in a reversible and dose-dependent manner in FRT-Cx43 and LN215 cells. Treatment with terbinafine did not affect Cx43 phosphorylation status or intracellular Ca 2+ concentration, well-known action mechanisms of various GJIC blockers. While a structurally related chemical, naftifine, attenuated GJIC, epigallocatechin gallate, another potent squalene epoxidase inhibitor with a different structure, did not. These results suggest that terbinafine inhibits GJIC with a so far unknown mechanism of action. - Highlights: • In vitro pharmacological studies were performed on FRT-Cx43 and LN215 cells. • Terbinafine inhibits gap junctional intercellular communication in both cell lines. • The inhibitory effect of terbinafine is reversible and dose-dependent. • Treatment of terbinafine does not alter Cx43 phosphorylation or cytosolic Ca 2+ concentration. • Inhibition of squalene epoxidase is not involved in this new effect of terbinafine.

  11. Terbinafine inhibits gap junctional intercellular communication

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Ju Yeun, E-mail: whitewndus@naver.com [College of Pharmacy, Yonsei Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Yonsei University, 85 Songdogwahak-ro, Yeonsu-gu, Incheon 21983 (Korea, Republic of); Yoon, Sei Mee, E-mail: sei_mee@naver.com [College of Pharmacy, Yonsei Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Yonsei University, 85 Songdogwahak-ro, Yeonsu-gu, Incheon 21983 (Korea, Republic of); Department of Integrated OMICS for Biomedical Sciences, Yonsei University, 50 Yonsei-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 120-749 (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Eun Ju, E-mail: yureas@naver.com [College of Pharmacy, Yonsei Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Yonsei University, 85 Songdogwahak-ro, Yeonsu-gu, Incheon 21983 (Korea, Republic of); Lee, Jinu, E-mail: jinulee@yonsei.ac.kr [College of Pharmacy, Yonsei Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Yonsei University, 85 Songdogwahak-ro, Yeonsu-gu, Incheon 21983 (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-09-15

    Terbinafine is an antifungal agent that selectively inhibits fungal sterol synthesis by blocking squalene epoxidase. We evaluated the effect of terbinafine on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC). Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) and I-YFP GJIC assays revealed that terbinafine inhibits GJIC in a reversible and dose-dependent manner in FRT-Cx43 and LN215 cells. Treatment with terbinafine did not affect Cx43 phosphorylation status or intracellular Ca{sup 2+} concentration, well-known action mechanisms of various GJIC blockers. While a structurally related chemical, naftifine, attenuated GJIC, epigallocatechin gallate, another potent squalene epoxidase inhibitor with a different structure, did not. These results suggest that terbinafine inhibits GJIC with a so far unknown mechanism of action. - Highlights: • In vitro pharmacological studies were performed on FRT-Cx43 and LN215 cells. • Terbinafine inhibits gap junctional intercellular communication in both cell lines. • The inhibitory effect of terbinafine is reversible and dose-dependent. • Treatment of terbinafine does not alter Cx43 phosphorylation or cytosolic Ca{sup 2+} concentration. • Inhibition of squalene epoxidase is not involved in this new effect of terbinafine.

  12. Anchored PKA as a gatekeeper for gap junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pidoux, Guillaume; Taskén, Kjetil

    2015-01-01

    Anchored protein kinase A (PKA) bound to A Kinase Anchoring Protein (AKAP) mediates effects of localized increases in cAMP in defined subcellular microdomains and retains the specificity in cAMP-PKA signaling to distinct extracellular stimuli. Gap junctions are pores between adjacent cells constituted by connexin proteins that provide means of communication and transfer of small molecules. While the PKA signaling is known to promote human trophoblast cell fusion, the gap junction communication through connexin 43 (Cx43) is a prerequisite for this process. We recently demonstrated that trophoblast fusion is regulated by ezrin, a known AKAP, which binds to Cx43 and delivers PKA in the vicinity gap junctions. We found that disruption of the ezrin-Cx43 interaction abolished PKA-dependent phosphorylation of Cx43 as well as gap junction communication and subsequently cell fusion. We propose that the PKA-ezrin-Cx43 macromolecular complex regulating gap junction communication constitutes a general mechanism to control opening of Cx43 gap junctions by phosphorylation in response to cAMP signaling in various cell types.

  13. Spinal Gap Junction Channels in Neuropathic Pain

    OpenAIRE

    Jeon, Young Hoon; Youn, Dong Ho

    2015-01-01

    Damage to peripheral nerves or the spinal cord is often accompanied by neuropathic pain, which is a complex, chronic pain state. Increasing evidence indicates that alterations in the expression and activity of gap junction channels in the spinal cord are involved in the development of neuropathic pain. Thus, this review briefly summarizes evidence that regulation of the expression, coupling, and activity of spinal gap junction channels modulates pain signals in neuropathic pain states induced...

  14. The oligodendroglial precursor cell line Oli-neu represents a cell culture system to examine functional expression of the mouse gap junction gene connexin29 (Cx29

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goran Christoph Söhl

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The potential gap junction forming mouse connexin29 (Cx29 protein is concomitantly expressed with connexin32 (Cx32 in peripheral myelin forming Schwann cells and together with both Cx32 and connexin47 (Cx47 in oligodendrocytes of the CNS. To study the genomic structure and functional expression of Cx29, either primary cells or cell culture systems might be selected, from which the latter are easier to cultivate. Both structure and expression of Cx29 is still not fully understood. In the mouse sciatic nerve, brain and the oligodendroglial precursor cell line Oli-neu the Cx29 gene is processed in two transcript isoforms both harbouring a unique reading frame. In contrast to Cx32 and Cx47, only Cx29 protein is abundantly expressed in undifferentiated as well as differentiated Oli-neu cells but the absence of Etbr dye transfer after microinjection concealed the function of Cx29 mediated gap junction communication between those cells. Although HeLa cells stably transfected with Cx29 or Cx29-eGFP neither demonstrated any permeability for Lucifer yellow nor for neurobiotin, blocking of Etbr uptake from the media by gap junction blockers does suppose a role of Cx29 in hemi-channel function. Thus, we conclude that, due to its high abundance of Cx29 expression and its reproducible culture conditions, the oligodendroglial precursor cell line Oli-neu might constitute an appropriate cell culture system to study molecular mechanisms or putative extracellular stimuli to functionally open Cx29 channels or hemi-channels.

  15. Dynamic trafficking and delivery of connexons to the plasma membrane and accretion to gap junctions in living cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lauf, Undine; Giepmans, Ben N G; Lopez, Patricia; Braconnot, Sebastien; Chen, Shu-Chih; Falk, Matthias M

    2002-01-01

    Certain membrane channels including acetylcholine receptors, gap junction (GJ) channels, and aquaporins arrange into large clusters in the plasma membrane (PM). However, how these channels are recruited to the clusters is unknown. To address this question, we have investigated delivery of GJ channel

  16. Heterocellular interaction enhances recruitment of α and β-catenins and ZO-2 into functional gap-junction complexes and induces gap junction-dependant differentiation of mammary epithelial cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Talhouk, Rabih S.; Mroue, Rana; Mokalled, Mayssa; Abi-Mosleh, Lina; Nehme, Ralda; Ismail, Ayman; Khalil, Antoine; Zaatari, Mira; El-Sabban, Marwan E.

    2008-01-01

    Gap junctions (GJ) are required for mammary epithelial differentiation. Using epithelial (SCp2) and myoepithelial-like (SCg6) mouse-derived mammary cells, the role of heterocellular interaction in assembly of GJ complexes and functional differentiation (β-casein expression) was evaluated. Heterocellular interaction is critical for β-casein expression, independent of exogenous basement membrane or cell anchoring substrata. Functional differentiation of SCp2, co-cultured with SCg6, is more sensitive to GJ inhibition relative to homocellular SCp2 cultures differentiated by exogenous basement membrane. Connexin (Cx)32 and Cx43 levels were not regulated across culture conditions; however, GJ functionality was enhanced under differentiation-permissive conditions. Immunoprecipitation studies demonstrated association of junctional complex components (α-catenin, β-catenin and ZO-2) with Cx32 and Cx43, in differentiation conditions, and additionally with Cx30 in heterocellular cultures. Although β-catenin did not shuttle between cadherin and GJ complexes, increased association between connexins and β-catenin in heterocellular cultures was observed. This was concomitant with reduced nuclear β-catenin, suggesting that differentiation in heterocellular cultures involves sequestration of β-catenin in GJ complexes

  17. Increasing gap junctional coupling: a tool for dissecting the role of gap junctions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Axelsen, Lene Nygaard; Haugan, Ketil; Stahlhut, Martin

    2007-01-01

    Much of our current knowledge about the physiological and pathophysiological role of gap junctions is based on experiments where coupling has been reduced by either chemical agents or genetic modification. This has brought evidence that gap junctions are important in many physiological processes....... In a number of cases, gap junctions have been implicated in the initiation and progress of disease, and experimental uncoupling has been used to investigate the exact role of coupling. The inverse approach, i.e., to increase coupling, has become possible in recent years and represents a new way of testing...... the role of gap junctions. The aim of this review is to summarize the current knowledge obtained with agents that selectively increase gap junctional intercellular coupling. Two approaches will be reviewed: increasing coupling by the use of antiarrhythmic peptide and its synthetic analogs...

  18. Terbinafine inhibits gap junctional intercellular communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ju Yeun; Yoon, Sei Mee; Choi, Eun Ju; Lee, Jinu

    2016-09-15

    Terbinafine is an antifungal agent that selectively inhibits fungal sterol synthesis by blocking squalene epoxidase. We evaluated the effect of terbinafine on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC). Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) and I-YFP GJIC assays revealed that terbinafine inhibits GJIC in a reversible and dose-dependent manner in FRT-Cx43 and LN215 cells. Treatment with terbinafine did not affect Cx43 phosphorylation status or intracellular Ca(2+) concentration, well-known action mechanisms of various GJIC blockers. While a structurally related chemical, naftifine, attenuated GJIC, epigallocatechin gallate, another potent squalene epoxidase inhibitor with a different structure, did not. These results suggest that terbinafine inhibits GJIC with a so far unknown mechanism of action. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Innexin gap junctions in nerve cells coordinate spontaneous contractile behavior in Hydra polyps

    KAUST Repository

    Takaku, Yasuharu; Hwang, Jung Shan; Wolf, Alexander; Bö ttger, Angelika; Shimizu, Hiroshi; David, Charles N.; Gojobori, Takashi

    2014-01-01

    Nerve cells and spontaneous coordinated behavior first appeared near the base of animal evolution in the common ancestor of cnidarians and bilaterians. Experiments on the cnidarian Hydra have demonstrated that nerve cells are essential

  20. On Biophysical Properties and Sensitivity to Gap Junction Blockers of Connexin 39 Hemichannels Expressed in HeLa Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vargas, Anibal A.; Cisterna, Bruno A.; Saavedra-Leiva, Fujiko; Urrutia, Carolina; Cea, Luis A.; Vielma, Alex H.; Gutierrez-Maldonado, Sebastian E.; Martin, Alberto J. M.; Pareja-Barrueto, Claudia; Escalona, Yerko; Schmachtenberg, Oliver; Lagos, Carlos F.; Perez-Acle, Tomas; Sáez, Juan C.

    2017-01-01

    Although connexins (Cxs) are broadly expressed by cells of mammalian organisms, Cx39 has a very restricted pattern of expression and the biophysical properties of Cx39-based channels [hemichannels (HCs) and gap junction channels (GJCs)] remain largely unknown. Here, we used HeLa cells transfected with Cx39 (HeLa-Cx39 cells) in which intercellular electrical coupling was not detected, indicating the absence of GJCs. However, functional HCs were found on the surface of cells exposed to conditions known to increase the open probability of other Cx HCs (e.g., extracellular divalent cationic-free solution (DCFS), extracellular alkaline pH, mechanical stimulus and depolarization to positive membrane potentials). Cx39 HCs were blocked by some traditional Cx HC blockers, but not by others or a pannexin1 channel blocker. HeLa-Cx39 cells showed similar resting membrane potentials (RMPs) to those of parental cells, and exposure to DCFS reduced RMPs in Cx39 transfectants, but not in parental cells. Under these conditions, unitary events of ~75 pS were frequent in HeLa-Cx39 cells and absent in parental cells. Real-time cellular uptake experiments of dyes with different physicochemical features, as well as the application of a machine-learning approach revealed that Cx39 HCs are preferentially permeable to molecules characterized by six categories of descriptors, namely: (1) electronegativity, (2) ionization potential, (3) polarizability, (4) size and geometry, (5) topological flexibility and (6) valence. However, Cx39 HCs opened by mechanical stimulation or alkaline pH were impermeable to Ca2+. Molecular modeling of Cx39-based channels suggest that a constriction present at the intracellular portion of the para helix region co-localizes with an electronegative patch, imposing an energetic and steric barrier, which in the case of GJCs may hinder channel function. Results reported here demonstrate that Cx39 form HCs and add to our understanding of the functional roles of Cx39 HCs

  1. Stem cells can form gap junctions with cardiac myocytes and exert pro-arrhythmic effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicoline Willemijn Smit

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Stem cell therapy has been suggested to be a promising option for regeneration of injured myocardium, for example following a myocardial infarction. For clinical use cell-based therapies have to be safe and applicable and are aimed to renovate the architecture of the heart. Yet for functional and coordinated activity synchronized with the host myocardium stem cells have to be capable of forming electrical connections with resident cardiomyocytes. In this paper we discuss whether stem cells are capable of establishing functional electrotonic connections with cardiomyocytes and whether these may generate a risk for arrhythmias. Application of stem cells in the clinical setting with outcomes concerning arrhythmogenic safety and future perspectives will also briefly be touched upon.

  2. Xenobiotic Modulation of Human Mammary Epithelial Cell Gap junctional Intercellular Communication and Growth

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ruch, Randall

    1998-01-01

    ...), phthalate esters, and dioxin have been implicated in this increase. Many xenobiotics such as DDT and PCBs have weak estrogenic activity and may enhance breast cancer formation by an estrogenic effect on breast epithelial cell growth...

  3. Xenobiotic Modulation of Human Mammary Epithelial Cell Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication and Growth

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ruch, Randall

    1997-01-01

    ...), phthalate esters, and dioxin have been implicated in this increase. Many xenobiotics such as DDT and PCBs have weak estrogenic activity and may enhance breast cancer formation by an estrogenic effect on breast epithelial cell growth...

  4. Gap junction modulation by extracellular signaling molecules: the thymus model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alves L.A.

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available Gap junctions are intercellular channels which connect adjacent cells and allow direct exchange of molecules of low molecular weight between them. Such a communication has been described as fundamental in many systems due to its importance in coordination, proliferation and differentiation. Recently, it has been shown that gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC can be modulated by several extracellular soluble factors such as classical hormones, neurotransmitters, interleukins, growth factors and some paracrine substances. Herein, we discuss some aspects of the general modulation of GJIC by extracellular messenger molecules and more particularly the regulation of such communication in the thymus gland. Additionally, we discuss recent data concerning the study of different neuropeptides and hormones in the modulation of GJIC in thymic epithelial cells. We also suggest that the thymus may be viewed as a model to study the modulation of gap junction communication by different extracellular messengers involved in non-classical circuits, since this organ is under bidirectional neuroimmunoendocrine control.

  5. Roles of gap junctions, connexins and pannexins in epilepsy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shanthini eMylvaganam

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Enhanced gap junctional communication (GJC between neurons is considered a major factor underlying the neuronal synchrony driving seizure activity. In addition, the hippocampal sharp wave ripple complexes, associated with learning and seizures, are diminished by GJC blocking agents. Although gap junctional blocking drugs inhibit experimental seizures, they all have other nonspecific actions. Besides interneuronal GJC between dendrites, inter-axonal and inter-glial GJC is also considered important for seizure generation. Interestingly, in most studies of cerebral tissue from animal seizure models and from human patients with epilepsy, there is up-regulation of glial, but not neuronal gap junctional mRNA and protein. Significant changes in the expression and post-translational modification of the astrocytic connexin Cx43, and Panx1 were observed in an in vitro Co++ seizure model, further supporting a role for glia in seizure-genesis, although the reasons for this remain unclear. Further suggesting an involvement of astrocytic GJC in epilepsy, is the fact that the expression of astrocytic Cx mRNAs (Cxs 30 and 43 is several fold higher than that of neuronal Cx mRNAs (Cxs 36 and 45, and the number of glial cells outnumber neuronal cells in mammalian hippocampal and cortical tissue. Pannexin expression is also increased in both animal and human epileptic tissues. Specific Cx43 mimetic peptides, Gap 27 and SLS, inhibit the docking of astrocytic connexin Cx43 proteins from forming intercellular gap junctions, diminishing spontaneous seizures. Besides GJs, Cx membrane hemichannels in glia and Panx membrane channels in neurons and glia are also inhibited by gap junctional pharmacological blockers. Although there is no doubt that connexin-based gap junctions and hemichannels, and pannexin-based membrane channels are related to epilepsy, the specific details of how they are involved and how we can modulate their function for therapeutic purposes remain to

  6. Gap junctions-guards of excitability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stroemlund, Line Waring; Jensen, Christa Funch; Qvortrup, Klaus

    2015-01-01

    Cardiomyocytes are connected by mechanical and electrical junctions located at the intercalated discs (IDs). Although these structures have long been known, it is becoming increasingly clear that their components interact. This review describes the involvement of the ID in electrical disturbances...... of the heart and focuses on the role of the gap junctional protein connexin 43 (Cx43). Current evidence shows that Cx43 plays a crucial role in organizing microtubules at the intercalated disc and thereby regulating the trafficking of the cardiac sodium channel NaV1.5 to the membrane....

  7. Hyperglycaemia and diabetes impair gap junctional communication among astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandhi, Gautam K; Ball, Kelly K; Cruz, Nancy F; Dienel, Gerald A

    2010-03-15

    Sensory and cognitive impairments have been documented in diabetic humans and animals, but the pathophysiology of diabetes in the central nervous system is poorly understood. Because a high glucose level disrupts gap junctional communication in various cell types and astrocytes are extensively coupled by gap junctions to form large syncytia, the influence of experimental diabetes on gap junction channel-mediated dye transfer was assessed in astrocytes in tissue culture and in brain slices from diabetic rats. Astrocytes grown in 15-25 mmol/l glucose had a slow-onset, poorly reversible decrement in gap junctional communication compared with those grown in 5.5 mmol/l glucose. Astrocytes in brain slices from adult STZ (streptozotocin)-treated rats at 20-24 weeks after the onset of diabetes also exhibited reduced dye transfer. In cultured astrocytes grown in high glucose, increased oxidative stress preceded the decrement in dye transfer by several days, and gap junctional impairment was prevented, but not rescued, after its manifestation by compounds that can block or reduce oxidative stress. In sharp contrast with these findings, chaperone molecules known to facilitate protein folding could prevent and rescue gap junctional impairment, even in the presence of elevated glucose level and oxidative stress. Immunostaining of Cx (connexin) 43 and 30, but not Cx26, was altered by growth in high glucose. Disruption of astrocytic trafficking of metabolites and signalling molecules may alter interactions among astrocytes, neurons and endothelial cells and contribute to changes in brain function in diabetes. Involvement of the microvasculature may contribute to diabetic complications in the brain, the cardiovascular system and other organs.

  8. Structure modeling and mutational analysis of gap junction beta 2 ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Yomi

    2012-04-03

    Apr 3, 2012 ... Three dimensional (3 D) structure is very useful for understanding biological functions. Gap junction beta 2 (GJB2), human gene encoding for gap junction beta 2 protein is involved in ... Research in deafness became real.

  9. Intracellular trafficking pathways of Cx43 gap junction channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epifantseva, Irina; Shaw, Robin M

    2018-01-01

    Gap Junction (GJ) channels, including the most common Connexin 43 (Cx43), have fundamental roles in excitable tissues by facilitating rapid transmission of action potentials between adjacent cells. For instance, synchronization during each heartbeat is regulated by these ion channels at the cardiomyocyte cell-cell border. Cx43 protein has a short half-life, and rapid synthesis and timely delivery of those proteins to particular subdomains are crucial for the cellular organization of gap junctions and maintenance of intracellular coupling. Impairment in gap junction trafficking contributes to dangerous complications in diseased hearts such as the arrhythmias of sudden cardiac death. Of recent interest are the protein-protein interactions with the Cx43 carboxy-terminus. These interactions have significant impact on the full length Cx43 lifecycle and also contribute to trafficking of Cx43 as well as possibly other functions. We are learning that many of the known non-canonical roles of Cx43 can be attributed to the recently identified six endogenous Cx43 truncated isoforms which are produced by internal translation. In general, alternative translation is a new leading edge for proteome expansion and therapeutic drug development. This review highlights recent mechanisms identified in the trafficking of gap junction channels, involvement of other proteins contributing to the delivery of channels to the cell-cell border, and understanding of possible roles of the newly discovered alternatively translated isoforms in Cx43 biology. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Gap Junction Proteins edited by Jean Claude Herve. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Quantum Junction Solar Cells

    KAUST Repository

    Tang, Jiang

    2012-09-12

    Colloidal quantum dot solids combine convenient solution-processing with quantum size effect tuning, offering avenues to high-efficiency multijunction cells based on a single materials synthesis and processing platform. The highest-performing colloidal quantum dot rectifying devices reported to date have relied on a junction between a quantum-tuned absorber and a bulk material (e.g., TiO 2); however, quantum tuning of the absorber then requires complete redesign of the bulk acceptor, compromising the benefits of facile quantum tuning. Here we report rectifying junctions constructed entirely using inherently band-aligned quantum-tuned materials. Realizing these quantum junction diodes relied upon the creation of an n-type quantum dot solid having a clean bandgap. We combine stable, chemically compatible, high-performance n-type and p-type materials to create the first quantum junction solar cells. We present a family of photovoltaic devices having widely tuned bandgaps of 0.6-1.6 eV that excel where conventional quantum-to-bulk devices fail to perform. Devices having optimal single-junction bandgaps exhibit certified AM1.5 solar power conversion efficiencies of 5.4%. Control over doping in quantum solids, and the successful integration of these materials to form stable quantum junctions, offers a powerful new degree of freedom to colloidal quantum dot optoelectronics. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

  11. Inhibition of hepatocyte gap junctional intercellular communication by tumor promoters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruch, R.J.

    1988-01-01

    The mechanisms by which tumor promoters enhance neoplasia are poorly understood. One effect common to most tumor promoters is their ability to inhibit the cell-to-cell exchange of small molecules and ions through gap junctions, i.e., gap junctional intercellular communication (IC). IC maybe necessary for normal growth control and the loss of IC may predispose cells to enhanced growth. In the present studies, the effects of liver tumor promoters and other agents on IC between rodent hepatocytes in primary culture has been studied. IC was detected between hepatocytes: (1) autoradiographically following the passage and incorporation of [5- 3 H]uridine nucleotides from pre-labeled donor hepatocytes to non-labeled, adjacent recipient hepatocytes and (2) by fluorescence microscopy after microinjection of fluorescent Lucifer Yellow CH dye into hepatocytes and visualizing dye spread into adjacent hepatocytes

  12. Rescue of Notch signaling in cells incapable of GDP-L-fucose synthesis by gap junction transfer of GDP-L-fucose in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayukawa, Tomonori; Matsumoto, Kenjiroo; Ishikawa, Hiroyuki O; Ishio, Akira; Yamakawa, Tomoko; Aoyama, Naoki; Suzuki, Takuya; Matsuno, Kenji

    2012-09-18

    Notch (N) is a transmembrane receptor that mediates cell-cell interactions to determine many cell-fate decisions. N contains EGF-like repeats, many of which have an O-fucose glycan modification that regulates N-ligand binding. This modification requires GDP-L-fucose as a donor of fucose. The GDP-L-fucose biosynthetic pathways are well understood, including the de novo pathway, which depends on GDP-mannose 4,6 dehydratase (Gmd) and GDP-4-keto-6-deoxy-D-mannose 3,5-epimerase/4-reductase (Gmer). However, the potential for intercellularly supplied GDP-L-fucose and the molecular basis of such transportation have not been explored in depth. To address these points, we studied the genetic effects of mutating Gmd and Gmer on fucose modifications in Drosophila. We found that these mutants functioned cell-nonautonomously, and that GDP-L-fucose was supplied intercellularly through gap junctions composed of Innexin-2. GDP-L-fucose was not supplied through body fluids from different isolated organs, indicating that the intercellular distribution of GDP-L-fucose is restricted within a given organ. Moreover, the gap junction-mediated supply of GDP-L-fucose was sufficient to support the fucosylation of N-glycans and the O-fucosylation of the N EGF-like repeats. Our results indicate that intercellular delivery is a metabolic pathway for nucleotide sugars in live animals under certain circumstances.

  13. Limitations of the dual voltage clamp method in assaying conductance and kinetics of gap junction channels

    OpenAIRE

    Wilders, R.; Jongsma, H.J.

    1992-01-01

    The electrical properties of gap junctions in cell pairs are usually studied by means of the dual voltage clamp method. The voltage across the junctional channels, however, cannot be controlled adequately due to an artificial resistance and a natural resistance, both connected in series with the gap junction. The access resistances to the cell interior of the recording pipettes make up the artificial resistance. The natural resistance consists of the cytoplasmic access resistances to the tigh...

  14. Dysfunction in gap junction intercellular communication induces aberrant behavior of the inner cell mass and frequent collapses of expanded blastocysts in mouse embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Togashi, Kazue; Kumagai, Jin; Sato, Emiko; Shirasawa, Hiromitsu; Shimoda, Yuki; Makino, Kenichi; Sato, Wataru; Kumazawa, Yukiyo; Omori, Yasufumi; Terada, Yukihiro

    2015-06-01

    We investigated the role of gap junctions (GJs) in embryological differentiation, and observed the morphological behavior of the inner cell mass (ICM) by time-lapse movie observation (TLM) with gap junction inhibitors (GJis). ICR mouse embryos were exposed to two types of GJis in CZB medium: oleamide (0 to 50 μM) and 1-heptanol (0 to 10 mM). We compared the rate of blastocyst formation at embryonic day 4.5 (E4.5) with E5.5. We also observed and evaluated the times from the second cleavage to each embryonic developing stage by TLM. We investigated embryonic distribution of DNA, Nanog protein, and Connexin 43 protein with immunofluorescent staining. In the comparison of E4.5 with E5.5, inhibition of gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) delayed embryonic blastocyst formation. The times from the second cleavage to blastocyst formation were significantly extended in the GJi-treated embryos (control vs with oleamide, 2224 ± 179 min vs 2354 ± 278 min, p = 0.013). Morphological differences were traced in control versus GJi-treated embryos until the hatching stage. Oleamide induced frequent severe collapses of expanded blastocysts (77.4 % versus 26.3 %, p = 0.0001) and aberrant ICM divisions connected to sticky strands (74.3 % versus 5.3 %, p = 0.0001). Immunofluorescent staining indicated Nanog-positive cells were distributed in each divided ICM. GJIC plays an important role in blastocyst formation, collapses of expanded blastocysts, and the ICM construction in mouse embryos.

  15. Symposia for a Meeting on Ion Channels and Gap Junctions

    CERN Document Server

    Sáez, Juan

    1997-01-01

    Ion channels allow us to see nature in all its magnificence, to hear a Bach suite, to smell the aroma of grandmother's cooking, and, in this regard, they put us in contact with the external world. These ion channels are protein molecules located in the cell membrane. In complex organisms, cells need to communicate in order to know about their metabolic status and to act in a coordinate manner. The latter is also accomplished by a class of ion channels able to pierce the lipid bilayer membranes of two adjacent cells. These intercellular channels are the functional subunits of gap junctions. Accordingly, the book is divided in two parts: the first part is dedicated to ion channels that look to the external world, and the second part is dedicated to gap junctions found at cell interfaces. This book is based on a series of symposia for a meeting on ion channels and gap junctions held in Santiago, Chile, on November 28-30, 1995. The book should be useful to graduate students taking the first steps in this field as...

  16. Gap Junctions Are Involved in the Rescue of CFTR-Dependent Chloride Efflux by Amniotic Mesenchymal Stem Cells in Coculture with Cystic Fibrosis CFBE41o- Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annalucia Carbone

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available We previously found that human amniotic mesenchymal stem cells (hAMSCs in coculture with CF immortalised airway epithelial cells (CFBE41o- line, CFBE on Transwell® filters acquired an epithelial phenotype and led to the expression of a mature and functional CFTR protein. In order to explore the role of gap junction- (GJ- mediated intercellular communication (GJIC in this rescue, cocultures (hAMSC : CFBE, 1 : 5 ratio were studied for the formation of GJIC, before and after silencing connexin 43 (Cx43, a major component of GJs. Functional GJs in cocultures were inhibited when the expression of the Cx43 protein was downregulated. Transfection of cocultures with siRNA against Cx43 resulted in the absence of specific CFTR signal on the apical membrane and reduction in the mature form of CFTR (band C, and in parallel, the CFTR-dependent chloride channel activity was significantly decreased. Cx43 downregulation determined also a decrease in transepithelial resistance and an increase in paracellular permeability as compared with control cocultures, implying that GJIC may regulate CFTR expression and function that in turn modulate airway epithelium tightness. These results indicate that GJIC is involved in the correction of CFTR chloride channel activity upon the acquisition of an epithelial phenotype by hAMSCs in coculture with CF cells.

  17. Gap Junctions Are Involved in the Rescue of CFTR-Dependent Chloride Efflux by Amniotic Mesenchymal Stem Cells in Coculture with Cystic Fibrosis CFBE41o- Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbone, Annalucia; Zefferino, Roberto; Beccia, Elisa; Casavola, Valeria; Castellani, Stefano; Di Gioia, Sante; Giannone, Valentina; Seia, Manuela; Angiolillo, Antonella; Colombo, Carla; Favia, Maria; Conese, Massimo

    2018-01-01

    We previously found that human amniotic mesenchymal stem cells (hAMSCs) in coculture with CF immortalised airway epithelial cells (CFBE41o- line, CFBE) on Transwell® filters acquired an epithelial phenotype and led to the expression of a mature and functional CFTR protein. In order to explore the role of gap junction- (GJ-) mediated intercellular communication (GJIC) in this rescue, cocultures (hAMSC : CFBE, 1 : 5 ratio) were studied for the formation of GJIC, before and after silencing connexin 43 (Cx43), a major component of GJs. Functional GJs in cocultures were inhibited when the expression of the Cx43 protein was downregulated. Transfection of cocultures with siRNA against Cx43 resulted in the absence of specific CFTR signal on the apical membrane and reduction in the mature form of CFTR (band C), and in parallel, the CFTR-dependent chloride channel activity was significantly decreased. Cx43 downregulation determined also a decrease in transepithelial resistance and an increase in paracellular permeability as compared with control cocultures, implying that GJIC may regulate CFTR expression and function that in turn modulate airway epithelium tightness. These results indicate that GJIC is involved in the correction of CFTR chloride channel activity upon the acquisition of an epithelial phenotype by hAMSCs in coculture with CF cells.

  18. Limitations of the dual voltage clamp method in assaying conductance and kinetics of gap junction channels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wilders, R.; Jongsma, H. J.

    1992-01-01

    The electrical properties of gap junctions in cell pairs are usually studied by means of the dual voltage clamp method. The voltage across the junctional channels, however, cannot be controlled adequately due to an artificial resistance and a natural resistance, both connected in series with the gap

  19. Beyond Gap Junction Channel Function: the Expression of Cx43 Contributes to Aldosterone-Induced Mesangial Cell Proliferation via the ERK1/2 and PKC Pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aiqing Zhang

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Aims: This study aimed to explore the precise mechanism and signaling pathways of mesangial cell (MC proliferation from a new point of view considering Connexin 43 (Cx43. Methods: MC proliferation was measured by the incorporation of 3H-thymidine (3H-TdR. Cx43 was over-expressed in MC cells using lipofectamine 2000, and the expression level was tested with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR and Western blot analyses. The gap junction channel function was explored by Lucifer Yellow scrape loading and dye transfer (SLDT, and the intracellular calcium concentrations ([Ca2+]i were characterized by confocal microscopy on cells loaded with Fura-3/AM. Results: There was an inverse correlation between Cx43 expression and MC proliferation (P0.05. Our data also showed that the mineralcorticoid receptor (MR antagonist spironolactone, ERK1/2 inhibitor PD98059 and PKC inhibitor GF109203X could attenuate the down-regulation of Cx43 expression in Aldo-induced MC proliferation; however, the PI3K inhibitor LY294002 could block MC proliferation without affecting Cx43 expression at either the mRNA or protein level. In addition, Aldo promoted MC proliferation in parallel with increasing [Ca2+]i (PConclusions: Our study provides preliminary evidence that Cx43 is an important regulator of Aldo-promoted MC proliferation. Furthermore, reduced Cx43 expression promoted MC proliferation independent of the gap junction channel function, and this process might be mediated through the ERK1/2- and PKC-dependent pathways.

  20. Antiproliferative Action of Conjugated Linoleic Acid on Human MCF-7 Breast Cancer Cells Mediated by Enhancement of Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication through Inactivation of NF-κB

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md. Abdur Rakib

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The major conjugated linoleic acid (CLA isomers, c9,t11-CLA and t10,c12-CLA, have anticancer effects; however, the exact mechanisms underlying these effects are unknown. Evidence suggests that reversal of reduced gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC in cancer cells inhibits cell growth and induces cell death. Hence, we determined that CLA isomers enhance GJIC in human MCF-7 breast cancer cells and investigated the underlying molecular mechanisms. The CLA isomers significantly enhanced GJIC of MCF-7 cells at 40 μM concentration, whereas CLA inhibited cell growth and induced caspase-dependent apoptosis. CLA increased connexin43 (Cx43 expression both at the transcriptional and translational levels. CLA inhibited nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB activity and enhanced reactive oxygen species (ROS generation. No significant difference was observed in the efficacy of c9,t11-CLA and t10,c12-CLA. These results suggest that the anticancer effect of CLA is associated with upregulation of GJIC mediated by enhanced Cx43 expression through inactivation of NF-κB and generation of ROS in MCF-7 cells.

  1. The extracellular matrix component laminin promotes gap junction formation in the rat anterior pituitary gland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horiguchi, Kotaro; Kouki, Tom; Fujiwara, Ken; Kikuchi, Motoshi; Yashiro, Takashi

    2011-03-01

    Folliculo-stellate (FS) cells in the anterior pituitary gland are believed to have multifunctional properties. FS cells connect to each other not only by mechanical means, but also by gap junctional cell-to-cell communication. Using transgenic rats that express green fluorescent protein (GFP) specifically in FS cells in the anterior pituitary gland (S100b-GFP rats), we recently revealed that FS cells in primary culture markedly change their shape, and form numerous interconnections with neighboring FS cells in the presence of laminin, an extracellular matrix (ECM) component of the basement membrane. Morphological and functional changes in cells are believed to be partly modified by matricrine signaling, by which ECM components function as cellular signals. In the present study, we examined whether gap junction formation between FS cells is affected by matricrine cues. A cell sorter was used to isolate FS cells from male S100b-GFP rat anterior pituitary for primary culture. We observed that mRNA and protein levels of connexin 43 in gap junction channels were clearly higher in the presence of laminin. In addition, we confirmed the formation of gap junctions between FS cells in primary culture by electron microscopy. Interestingly, we also observed that FS cells in the presence of laminin displayed well-developed rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus. Our findings suggest that, in anterior pituitary gland, FS cells may facilitate functional roles such as gap junctional cell-to-cell communication by matricrine signaling.

  2. Inhibition of gap junctional Intercellular communication in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells by triphenyltin chloride through MAPK and PI3-kinase pathways

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    Tsai Ming-Che

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Organotin compounds (OTCs have been widely used as stabilizers in the production of plastic, agricultural pesticides, antifoulant plaints and wood preservation. The toxicity of triphenyltin (TPT compounds was known for their embryotoxic, neurotoxic, genotoxic and immunotoxic effects in mammals. The carcinogenicity of TPT was not well understood and few studies had discussed the effects of OTCs on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC of cells. Method In the present study, the effects of triphenyltin chloride (TPTC on GJIC in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells were evaluated, using the scrape-loading dye transfer technique. Results TPTC inhibited GJIC after a 30-min exposure in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. Pre-incubation of cells with the protein kinase C (PKC inhibitor did not modify the response, but the specific MEK 1 inhibitor PD98059 and PI3K inhibitor LY294002 decreased substantially the inhibition of GJIC by TPTC. After WB-F344 cells were exposed to TPTC, phosphorylation of Cx43 increased as seen in Western blot analysis. Conclusions These results show that TPTC inhibits GJIC in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells by altering the Cx43 protein expression through both MAPK and PI3-kinase pathways.

  3. Gemcitabine intercellular diffusion mediated by gap junctions: new implications for cancer therapy

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    Caruso Manuel

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Solid tumors are often poorly vascularized, with cells that can be 100 μm away from blood vessels. These distant cells get less oxygen and nutrients and are exposed to lower doses of chemotherapeutic agents. As gap junctions allow the passage of small molecules between cells, we tested the possibility that the chemotherapeutic agent gemcitabine can diffuse through gap junctions in solid tumors. Results We first showed with a dye transfer assay that the glioblastoma and the osteosarcoma cells used in this study have functional gap junctions. These cells were genetically engineered to express the herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase (TK, and induced a "bystander effect" as demonstrated by the killing of TK-negative cells in presence of the nucleoside analogue ganciclovir (GCV. The ability of gemcitabine to induce a similar bystander effect was then tested by mixing cells treated with 3 μM gemcitabine for 24 hours with untreated cells at different ratios. In all cell lines tested, bystander cells were killed with ratios containing as low as 5% treated cells, and this toxic effect was reduced in presence of α-glycyrrhetinic acid (AGA, a specific gap junction inhibitor. We also showed that a 2- or a 24-hour gemcitabine treatment was more efficient to inhibit the growth of spheroids with functional gap junctions as compared to the same treatment made in presence of AGA. Finally, after a 24-hour gemcitabine treatment, the cell viability in spheroids was reduced by 92% as opposed to 51% in presence of AGA. Conclusion These results indicate that gemcitabine-mediated toxicity can diffuse through gap junctions, and they suggest that gemcitabine treatment could be more efficient for treating solid tumors that display gap junctions. The presence of these cellular channels could be used to predict the responsiveness to this nucleoside analogue therapy.

  4. Phosphatidylcholine Specific PLC-Induced Dysregulation of Gap Junctions, a Robust Cellular Response to Environmental Toxicants, and Prevention by Resveratrol in a Rat Liver Cell Model

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sovadinová, I.; Babica, Pavel; Böke, H.; Kumar, E.; Wilke, A.; Park, J.-S.; Trosko, J. E.; Upham, B. L.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 10, 5 no.e0124454 (2015), s. 1-16 E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LH12034 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : gap junctional intercellular communication * resveratrol * phosphatidylcholine-specific phospholipase C Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 3.057, year: 2015

  5. Intercellular communication via gap junctions affected by mechanical load in the bovine annulus fibrosus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desrochers, Jane; Duncan, Neil A

    2014-01-01

    Cells in the intervertebral disc, as in other connective tissues including tendon, ligament and bone, form interconnected cellular networks that are linked via functional gap junctions. These cellular networks may be necessary to affect a coordinated response to mechanical and environmental stimuli. Using confocal microscopy with fluorescence recovery after photobleaching methods, we explored the in situ strain environment of the outer annulus of an intact bovine disc and the effect of high-level flexion on gap junction signalling. The in situ strain environment in the extracellular matrix of the outer annulus under high flexion load was observed to be non-uniform with the extensive cellular processes remaining crimped sometimes at flexion angles greater than 25°. A significant transient disruption of intercellular communication via functional gap junctions was measured after 10 and 20 min under high flexion load. This study illustrates that in healthy annulus fibrosus tissue, high mechanical loads can impede the functioning of the gap junctions. Future studies will explore more complex loading conditions to determine whether losses in intercellular communication can be permanent and whether gap junctions in aged and degenerated tissues become more susceptible to load. The current research suggests that cellular structures such as gap junctions and intercellular networks, as well as other cell-cell and cell-matrix interconnections, need to be considered in computational models in order to fully understand how macroscale mechanical signals are transmitted across scales to the microscale and ultimately into a cellular biosynthetic response in collagenous tissues.

  6. Gap junctional coupling in the vertebrate retina: variations on one theme?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Völgyi, Béla; Kovács-Oller, Tamás; Atlasz, Tamás; Wilhelm, Márta; Gábriel, Róbert

    2013-05-01

    Gap junctions connect cells in the bodies of all multicellular organisms, forming either homologous or heterologous (i.e. established between identical or different cell types, respectively) cell-to-cell contacts by utilizing identical (homotypic) or different (heterotypic) connexin protein subunits. Gap junctions in the nervous system serve electrical signaling between neurons, thus they are also called electrical synapses. Such electrical synapses are particularly abundant in the vertebrate retina where they are specialized to form links between neurons as well as glial cells. In this article, we summarize recent findings on retinal cell-to-cell coupling in different vertebrates and identify general features in the light of the evergrowing body of data. In particular, we describe and discuss tracer coupling patterns, connexin proteins, junctional conductances and modulatory processes. This multispecies comparison serves to point out that most features are remarkably conserved across the vertebrate classes, including (i) the cell types connected via electrical synapses; (ii) the connexin makeup and the conductance of each cell-to-cell contact; (iii) the probable function of each gap junction in retinal circuitry; (iv) the fact that gap junctions underlie both electrical and/or tracer coupling between glial cells. These pan-vertebrate features thus demonstrate that retinal gap junctions have changed little during the over 500 million years of vertebrate evolution. Therefore, the fundamental architecture of electrically coupled retinal circuits seems as old as the retina itself, indicating that gap junctions deeply incorporated in retinal wiring from the very beginning of the eye formation of vertebrates. In addition to hard wiring provided by fast synaptic transmitter-releasing neurons and soft wiring contributed by peptidergic, aminergic and purinergic systems, electrical coupling may serve as the 'skeleton' of lateral processing, enabling important functions such

  7. Connexin 43 Expression on Peripheral Blood Eosinophils: Role of Gap Junctions in Transendothelial Migration

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    Harissios Vliagoftis

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Eosinophils circulate in the blood and are recruited in tissues during allergic inflammation. Gap junctions mediate direct communication between adjacent cells and may represent a new way of communication between immune cells distinct from communication through cytokines and chemokines. We characterized the expression of connexin (Cx43 by eosinophils isolated from atopic individuals using RT-PCR, Western blotting, and confocal microscopy and studied the biological functions of gap junctions on eosinophils. The formation of functional gap junctions was evaluated measuring dye transfer using flow cytometry. The role of gap junctions on eosinophil transendothelial migration was studied using the inhibitor 18-a-glycyrrhetinic acid. Peripheral blood eosinophils express Cx43 mRNA and protein. Cx43 is localized not only in the cytoplasm but also on the plasma membrane. The membrane impermeable dye BCECF transferred from eosinophils to epithelial or endothelial cells following coculture in a dose and time dependent fashion. The gap junction inhibitors 18-a-glycyrrhetinic acid and octanol did not have a significant effect on dye transfer but reduced dye exit from eosinophils. The gap junction inhibitor 18-a-glycyrrhetinic acid inhibited eosinophil transendothelial migration in a dose dependent manner. Thus, eosinophils from atopic individuals express Cx43 constitutively and Cx43 may play an important role in eosinophil transendothelial migration and function in sites of inflammation.

  8. A three-dimensional model of a gap junction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xylouris, K.; Wittum, G.

    2009-01-01

    Gap junctions are effective electric couplings between neurons and form a very important way of communication between them. Since they can be considered as the points on the neuron's membrane on which for example dendrites of different cells become one piece, in three dimensions they can be modelled by observing this property in the created geometry. Thus they can be easily made part in an already existing 3-dimensional model for signal propagation on the neuron's membrane, if the geometries are chosen in such a way respect the blending of the membranes. A small network of two cells was created, which blend in their dendrites and a simulation of the three-dimensional model was carried out which reveals the fast transmission of the signal from one cell to the other.

  9. 17β estradiol regulation of connexin 43-based gap junction and mechanosensitivity through classical estrogen receptor pathway in osteocyte-like MLO-Y4 cells.

    KAUST Repository

    Ren, Jian

    2013-04-01

    Connexin 43 (Cx43) plays an essential role in osteocyte mechanotransduction. Although estrogen involves in the adaptive responses of bone cells to mechanical loadings, its effects on osteocytic Cx43-based gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) remain obscure. We found that 17β estradiol (E2) up-regulated Cx43, and enhanced GJIC in osteocyte-like MLO-Y4 cells in fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) assay. Combination of E2 pre-treatment and oscillating fluid flow (OFF) further enhanced Cx43 expression and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) phosphorylation, comparing to E2 or OFF treatment alone. Both blocking of classical estrogen receptors (ERα/β) by fulvestrant and ERα knockdown by small interfering RNA inhibited E2-mediated Cx43 increase, while a GPR30-specific agonist G-1 failed to promote Cx43 expression. Our results suggest that the presence of E2 enhanced Cx43-based GJIC mainly via ERα/β pathway, and sensitized osteocytes to mechanical loading. © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Gap junction coupling confers isopotentiality on astrocyte syncytium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Baofeng; Buckalew, Richard; Du, Yixing; Kiyoshi, Conrad M.; Alford, Catherine C.; Wang, Wei; McTigue, Dana D.; Enyeart, John J.; Terman, David; Zhou, Min

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are extensively coupled through gap junctions into a syncytium. However, the basic role of this major brain network remains largely unknown. Using electrophysiological and computational modeling methods, we demonstrate that the membrane potential (VM) of an individual astrocyte in a hippocampal syncytium, but not in a single, freshly isolated cell preparation, can be well-maintained at quasi-physiological levels when recorded with reduced or K+ free pipette solutions that alter the K+ equilibrium potential to non-physiological voltages. We show that an astrocyte’s associated syncytium provides powerful electrical coupling, together with ionic coupling at a lesser extent, that equalizes the astrocyte’s VM to levels comparable to its neighbors. Functionally, this minimizes VM depolarization attributable to elevated levels of local extracellular K+ and thereby maintains a sustained driving force for highly efficient K+ uptake. Thus, gap junction coupling functions to achieve isopotentiality in astrocytic networks, whereby a constant extracellular environment can be powerfully maintained for crucial functions of neural circuits. PMID:26435164

  11. [Effects of Chinese herbal compound for supplementing qi and activating blood circulation on actin, Cx43 expressions and gap junctional intercellular communication functions of myocardial cells in patients with Coxsackie virus B 3 viral myocarditis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ming-xue; He, Wei; Gu, Ping

    2010-08-01

    To observe the effect of Chinese herbal compound for supplementing qi and activating blood circulation (CHC) on the gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) function of myocardial cells in patients with Coxsackie virus B 3 (CVB3) viral myocarditis. Expressions of actin and connexin43 (Cx43) in myocardial cells of patients arranged in three groups (the normal control group, the viral infected group and the CHC treated group) were detected by immunohistochemical method; the fluorescence photobleaching recovery rate of cells was detected by laser scanning confocal microscope. As compared with the viral infected group, the expressions of actin and Cx43 were increased and the GJIC function was improved in the CHC treated group. CHC could antagonize viral injury on skeleton protein, and repair the structure of gap junction channel to improve the GJIC function of myocardial cells after being attacked by CVB3.

  12. Regulation of connexin43 gap junctional communication by phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Zeijl, Leonie; Ponsioen, Bas; Giepmans, Ben N G; Ariaens, Aafke; Postma, Friso R; Várnai, Péter; Balla, Tamas; Divecha, Nullin; Jalink, Kees; Moolenaar, Wouter H

    2007-01-01

    Cell-cell communication through connexin43 (Cx43)-based gap junction channels is rapidly inhibited upon activation of various G protein coupled receptors; however, the mechanism is unknown. We show that Cx43-based cell-cell communication is inhibited by depletion of phosphatidylinositol

  13. Inhibition of connexin43 gap junction channels by the endocrine disruptor ioxynil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leithe, Edward; Kjenseth, Ane; Bruun, Jarle; Sirnes, Solveig; Rivedal, Edgar

    2010-01-01

    Gap junctions are intercellular plasma membrane domains containing channels that mediate transport of ions, metabolites and small signaling molecules between adjacent cells. Gap junctions play important roles in a variety of cellular processes, including regulation of cell growth and differentiation, maintenance of tissue homeostasis and embryogenesis. The constituents of gap junction channels are a family of trans-membrane proteins called connexins, of which the best-studied is connexin43. Connexin43 functions as a tumor suppressor protein in various tissue types and is frequently dysregulated in human cancers. The pesticide ioxynil has previously been shown to act as an endocrine disrupting chemical and has multiple effects on the thyroid axis. Furthermore, both ioxynil and its derivative ioxynil octanoate have been reported to induce tumors in animal bioassays. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the possible tumorigenic effects of these compounds are unknown. In the present study we show that ioxynil and ioxynil octanoate are strong inhibitors of connexin43 gap junction channels. Both compounds induced rapid loss of connexin43 gap junctions at the plasma membrane and increased connexin43 degradation. Ioxynil octanoate, but not ioxynil, was found to be a strong activator of ERK1/2. The compounds also had different effects on the phosphorylation status of connexin43. Taken together, the data show that ioxynil and ioxynil octanoate are potent inhibitors of intercellular communication via gap junctions.

  14. Gap junction protein connexin43 exacerbates lung vascular permeability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James J O'Donnell

    Full Text Available Increased vascular permeability causes pulmonary edema that impairs arterial oxygenation and thus contributes to morbidity and mortality associated with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome and sepsis. Although components of intercellular adhesive and tight junctions are critical for maintaining the endothelial barrier, there has been limited study of the roles of gap junctions and their component proteins (connexins. Since connexins can modulate inflammatory signaling in other systems, we hypothesized that connexins may also regulate pulmonary endothelial permeability. The relationships between connexins and the permeability response to inflammatory stimuli were studied in cultured human pulmonary endothelial cells. Prolonged treatment with thrombin, lipopolysaccharide, or pathological cyclic stretch increased levels of mRNA and protein for the major connexin, connexin43 (Cx43. Thrombin and lipopolysaccharide both increased intercellular communication assayed by transfer of microinjected Lucifer yellow. Although thrombin decreased transendothelial resistance in these cells, the response was attenuated by pretreatment with the connexin inhibitor carbenoxolone. Additionally, the decreases of transendothelial resistance produced by either thrombin or lipopolysaccharide were attenuated by reducing Cx43 expression by siRNA knockdown. Both carbenoxolone and Cx43 knockdown also abrogated thrombin-induced phosphorylation of myosin light chain. Taken together, these data suggest that increased lung vascular permeability induced by inflammatory conditions may be amplified via increased expression of Cx43 and intercellular communication among pulmonary endothelial cells.

  15. Observation of gap inhomogeneity in superconducting aluminum tunnel junctions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gilmartin, H.R.

    1982-01-01

    Experiments using a novel technique to investigate spatial variations in the superconducting gap parameter of aluminum films driven out of equilibrium by intense tunnel injection are described. The technique features fine spatial and energy resolution of the gap parameter. The experiments employed a finely focused laser spot scanned across the surface of a double tunnel junction sandwich to produce a very weak electrical signal that was analyzed to determine the gap parameter as a function of position in the plane of the device. Technical aspects of the problem are emphasized, since a new technique is presented. An elaborate explanation of the origin and analysis of the laser induced signal is given, as well as a detailed description of the experimental apparatus. Very briefly, the principle of operation is that a large flux of quasiparticles is injected through the lower junction of the sandwich into the middle aluminum film, and the upper junction serves to detect the effects of that injection. The middle film takes on two or more values of the gap parameter under injection, presumably indicating spatial variation. The presence of a small laser spot on a given point on the device perturbs the potential on the detector junction very slightly. That perturbation is measured as a function of bias current to determine the gap parameter of the middle film at that point. The spot is scanned in a raster pattern to produce a picture of the space dependence of the gap parameter

  16. Inhibition of dye-coupling in Patella (mollusca) embryos by microinjection of antiserum against Nephrops (arthropoda) gap junctions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Serras, F.; Buultjens, T.E.J.; Finbow, M.E.

    1988-01-01

    Antiserum raised against Nephrops gap junctions was injected into single cells of the 2-, 4-, 8-, 16-, and 32-cell stage of the Patella vulgata embryos. The pattern of junctional communication by iontophoresis of Lucifer Yellow CH was tested at the 32-cell stage. The results show that the normal

  17. Quantum Junction Solar Cells

    KAUST Repository

    Tang, Jiang; Liu, Huan; Zhitomirsky, David; Hoogland, Sjoerd; Wang, Xihua; Furukawa, Melissa; Levina, Larissa; Sargent, Edward H.

    2012-01-01

    -performing colloidal quantum dot rectifying devices reported to date have relied on a junction between a quantum-tuned absorber and a bulk material (e.g., TiO 2); however, quantum tuning of the absorber then requires complete redesign of the bulk acceptor, compromising

  18. Gap Junctions Contribute to Ictal/Interictal Genesis in Human Hypothalamic Hamartomas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Wu

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Human hypothalamic hamartoma (HH is a rare subcortical lesion associated with treatment-resistant epilepsy. Cellular mechanisms responsible for epileptogenesis are unknown. We hypothesized that neuronal gap junctions contribute to epileptogenesis through synchronous activity within the neuron networks in HH tissue. We studied surgically resected HH tissue with Western-blot analysis, immunohistochemistry, electron microscopy, biocytin microinjection of recorded HH neurons, and microelectrode patch clamp recordings with and without pharmacological blockade of gap junctions. Normal human hypothalamus tissue was used as a control. Western blots showed increased expression of both connexin-36 (Cx36 and connexin-43 (Cx43 in HH tissue compared with normal human mammillary body tissue. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated that Cx36 and Cx43 are expressed in HH tissue, but Cx36 was mainly expressed within neuron clusters while Cx43 was mainly expressed outside of neuron clusters. Gap-junction profiles were observed between small HH neurons with electron microscopy. Biocytin injection into single recorded small HH neurons showed labeling of adjacent neurons, which was not observed in the presence of a neuronal gap-junction blocker, mefloquine. Microelectrode field recordings from freshly resected HH slices demonstrated spontaneous ictal/interictal-like discharges in most slices. Bath-application of gap-junction blockers significantly reduced ictal/interictal-like discharges in a concentration-dependent manner, while not affecting the action-potential firing of small gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA neurons observed with whole-cell patch-clamp recordings from the same patient's HH tissue. These results suggest that neuronal gap junctions between small GABAergic HH neurons participate in the genesis of epileptic-like discharges. Blockade of gap junctions may be a new therapeutic strategy for controlling seizure activity in HH patients.

  19. Pallidal gap junctions-triggers of synchrony in Parkinson's disease?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schwab, B.C.; Heida, T.; Zhao, Y.; Gils, S.A. van; Wezel, R.J.A. van

    2014-01-01

    Although increased synchrony of the neural activity in the basal ganglia may underlie the motor deficiencies exhibited in Parkinson's disease (PD), how this synchrony arises, propagates through the basal ganglia, and changes under dopamine replacement remains unknown. Gap junctions could play a

  20. Pallidal gap junctions - Triggers of synchrony in Parkinson's disease?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schwab, B.C.; Heida, Tjitske; Zhao, Yan; van Gils, Stephanus A.; van Wezel, Richard Jack Anton

    2014-01-01

    Although increased synchrony of the neural activity in the basal ganglia may underlie the motor deficiencies exhibited in Parkinson's disease (PD), how this synchrony arises, propagates through the basal ganglia, and changes under dopamine replacement remains unknown. Gap junctions could play a

  1. [Gap junctions: A new therapeutic target in major depressive disorder?].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarrouilhe, D; Dejean, C

    2015-11-01

    Major depressive disorder is a multifactorial chronic and debilitating mood disease with high lifetime prevalence and is associated with excess mortality, especially from cardiovascular diseases and through suicide. The treatments of this disease with tricyclic antidepressants and monoamine oxidase inhibitors are poorly tolerated and those that selectively target serotonin and norepinephrine re-uptake are not effective in all patients, showing the need to find new therapeutic targets. Post-mortem studies of brains from patients with major depressive disorders described a reduced expression of the gap junction-forming membrane proteins connexin 30 and connexin 43 in the prefrontal cortex and the locus coeruleus. The use of chronic unpredictable stress, a rodent model of depression, suggests that astrocytic gap junction dysfunction contributes to the pathophysiology of major depressive disorder. Chronic treatments of rats with fluoxetine and of rat cultured cortical astrocytes with amitriptyline support the hypothesis that the upregulation of gap junctional intercellular communication between brain astrocytes could be a novel mechanism for the therapeutic effect of antidepressants. In conclusion, astrocytic gap junctions are emerging as a new potential therapeutic target for the treatment of patients with major depressive disorder. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  2. The psychostimulant modafinil enhances gap junctional communication in cortical astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xinhe; Petit, Jean-Marie; Ezan, Pascal; Gyger, Joël; Magistretti, Pierre; Giaume, Christian

    2013-12-01

    Sleep-wake cycle is characterized by changes in neuronal network activity. However, for the last decade there is increasing evidence that neuroglial interaction may play a role in the modulation of sleep homeostasis and that astrocytes have a critical impact in this process. Interestingly, astrocytes are organized into communicating networks based on their high expression of connexins, which are the molecular constituents of gap junction channels. Thus, neuroglial interactions should also be considered as the result of the interplay between neuronal and astroglial networks. Here, we investigate the effect of modafinil, a wakefulness-promoting agent, on astrocyte gap junctional communication. We report that in the cortex modafinil injection increases the expression of mRNA and protein of connexin 30 but not those of connexin 43, the other major astroglial connexin. These increases are correlated with an enhancement of intercellular dye coupling in cortical astrocytes, which is abolished when neuronal activity is silenced by tetrodotoxin. Moreover, gamma-hydroxybutyric acid, which at a millimolar concentration induces sleep, has an opposite effect on astroglial gap junctions in an activity-independent manner. These results support the proposition that astroglia may play an important role in complex physiological brain functions, such as sleep regulation, and that neuroglial networking interaction is modified during sleep-wake cycle. This article is part of the Special Issue Section entitled 'Current Pharmacology of Gap Junction Channels and Hemichannels'. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  3. Gap junctions and inhibitory synapses modulate inspiratory motoneuron synchronization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bou-Flores, C; Berger, A J

    2001-04-01

    Interneuronal electrical coupling via gap junctions and chemical synaptic inhibitory transmission are known to have roles in the generation and synchronization of activity in neuronal networks. Uncertainty exists regarding the roles of these two modes of interneuronal communication in the central respiratory rhythm-generating system. To assess their roles, we performed studies on both the neonatal mouse medullary slice and en bloc brain stem-spinal cord preparations where rhythmic inspiratory motor activity can readily be recorded from both hypoglossal and phrenic nerve roots. The rhythmic inspiratory activity observed had two temporal characteristics: the basic respiratory frequency occurring on a long time scale and the synchronous neuronal discharge within the inspiratory burst occurring on a short time scale. In both preparations, we observed that bath application of gap-junction blockers, including 18 alpha-glycyrrhetinic acid, 18 beta-glycyrrhetinic acid, and carbenoxolone, all caused a reduction in respiratory frequency. In contrast, peak integrated phrenic and hypoglossal inspiratory activity was not significantly changed by gap-junction blockade. On a short-time-scale, gap-junction blockade increased the degree of synchronization within an inspiratory burst observed in both nerves. In contrast, opposite results were observed with blockade of GABA(A) and glycine receptors. We found that respiratory frequency increased with receptor blockade, and simultaneous blockade of both receptors consistently resulted in a reduction in short-time-scale synchronized activity observed in phrenic and hypoglossal inspiratory bursts. These results support the concept that the central respiratory system has two components: a rhythm generator responsible for the production of respiratory cycle timing and an inspiratory pattern generator that is involved in short-time-scale synchronization. In the neonatal rodent, properties of both components can be regulated by interneuronal

  4. Mechanotransductive Regulation of Gap-Junction Activity Between MLO-Y4 Osteocyte-Like and MC3T3-E1 Osteoblast-Like Cells in Three-Dimensional Co-Culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juran, C. M.; Blaber, E. A.; Almeida, E. A. C.

    2016-01-01

    Cell and animal studies conducted onboard the International Space Station and formerly on Shuttle flights have provided groundbreaking data illuminating the deleterious biological response of bone to mechanical unloading. However the intercellular communicative mechanisms associated with the regulation of bone synthesis and bone resorption cells are still largely unknown. Connexin-43 (CX43), a gap junction protein, is hypothesized to play a significant role in osteoblast and osteocyte signaling. The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate within a novel three-dimensional microenvironment how the osteocyte-osteoblast gap-junction expression changes when cultures are exposed to exaggerated mechanical load. MLO-Y4 osteocyte-like cells were cultured on a 3D-Biotek polystyrene insert and placed in direct contact with an MC3T3-E1 pre-osteoblast co-cultured monolayer and exposed to 48 h of mechanical stimulation (pulsatile fluid flow (PFF) or monolayer cyclic stretch (MCS)) then evaluated for viability, proliferation, metabolism, and CX43 expression. Mono-cultured MLO-Y4 and MC3T3-E1 control experiments were conducted under PFF and MCS stimulation to observe how strain application stimuli (PFF cell membrane shear or MCS cell focal adhesion/attachment loading) initiates different signaling pathways or downstream regulatory controls. TotalLive cell count, viability and metabolic reduction (Trypan Blue, LIVEDead and Alamar Blue analysis respectively) indicate that mechanical activation of MC3T3-E1 cells inhibits proliferation while maintaining an average 1.04E4 reductioncell metabolic rate, *p0.05 n4. MLO-Y4s in monolayer culture increase in number when exposed to MCS loading but the percent of live cells within the population is low (46.3 total count, *p0.05 n4), these results may indicate an apoptotic signaling cascade. PFF stimulation of the three-dimensional co-cultures elicits a universal increase in CX43 in MLO-Y4 and MC3T3-E1 cells, illustrated by

  5. Cut-loading: a useful tool for examining the extent of gap junction tracer coupling between retinal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Hee Joo; Ribelayga, Christophe P; Mangel, Stuart C

    2012-01-12

    In addition to chemical synaptic transmission, neurons that are connected by gap junctions can also communicate rapidly via electrical synaptic transmission. Increasing evidence indicates that gap junctions not only permit electrical current flow and synchronous activity between interconnected or coupled cells, but that the strength or effectiveness of electrical communication between coupled cells can be modulated to a great extent(1,2). In addition, the large internal diameter (~1.2 nm) of many gap junction channels permits not only electric current flow, but also the diffusion of intracellular signaling molecules and small metabolites between interconnected cells, so that gap junctions may also mediate metabolic and chemical communication. The strength of gap junctional communication between neurons and its modulation by neurotransmitters and other factors can be studied by simultaneously electrically recording from coupled cells and by determining the extent of diffusion of tracer molecules, which are gap junction permeable, but not membrane permeable, following iontophoretic injection into single cells. However, these procedures can be extremely difficult to perform on neurons with small somata in intact neural tissue. Numerous studies on electrical synapses and the modulation of electrical communication have been conducted in the vertebrate retina, since each of the five retinal neuron types is electrically connected by gap junctions(3,4). Increasing evidence has shown that the circadian (24-hour) clock in the retina and changes in light stimulation regulate gap junction coupling(3-8). For example, recent work has demonstrated that the retinal circadian clock decreases gap junction coupling between rod and cone photoreceptor cells during the day by increasing dopamine D2 receptor activation, and dramatically increases rod-cone coupling at night by reducing D2 receptor activation(7,8). However, not only are these studies extremely difficult to perform on

  6. Hexavalent chromium at low concentration alters Sertoli cell barrier and connexin 43 gap junction but not claudin-11 and N-cadherin in the rat seminiferous tubule culture model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carette, Diane [INSERM U 1065, Team 5 “Physiopathology of Germ Cell Control: Genomic and Non Genomic Mechanisms” C3M, University of Nice Sophia Antipolis, Nice (France); UMR S775, University Paris Descartes, 45 rue des Saints Pères, 75006, Paris (France); Perrard, Marie-Hélène, E-mail: marie-helene.durand@ens-lyon.fr [Institut de Génomique Fonctionnelle de Lyon, Université de Lyon, Université Lyon I, CNRS, INRA, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, Lyon (France); Prisant, Nadia [University of Versailles/St Quentin-en-Yvelines (France); UMR S775, University Paris Descartes, 45 rue des Saints Pères, 75006, Paris (France); Gilleron, Jérome; Pointis, Georges [INSERM U 1065, Team 5 “Physiopathology of Germ Cell Control: Genomic and Non Genomic Mechanisms” C3M, University of Nice Sophia Antipolis, Nice (France); Segretain, Dominique [University of Versailles/St Quentin-en-Yvelines (France); UMR S775, University Paris Descartes, 45 rue des Saints Pères, 75006, Paris (France); Durand, Philippe [Institut de Génomique Fonctionnelle de Lyon, Université de Lyon, Université Lyon I, CNRS, INRA, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, Lyon (France); Kallistem SAS Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, Lyon (France)

    2013-04-01

    Exposure to toxic metals, specifically those belonging to the nonessential group leads to human health defects and among them reprotoxic effects. The mechanisms by which these metals produce their negative effects on spermatogenesis have not been fully elucidated. By using the Durand's validated seminiferous tubule culture model, which mimics the in vivo situation, we recently reported that concentrations of hexavalent chromium, reported in the literature to be closed to that found in the blood circulation of men, increase the number of germ cell cytogenetic abnormalities. Since this metal is also known to affect cellular junctions, we investigated, in the present study, its potential influence on the Sertoli cell barrier and on junctional proteins present at this level such as connexin 43, claudin-11 and N-cadherin. Cultured seminiferous tubules in bicameral chambers expressed the three junctional proteins and ZO-1 for at least 12 days. Exposure to low concentrations of chromium (10 μg/l) increased the trans-epithelial resistance without major changes of claudin-11 and N-cadherin expressions but strongly delocalized the gap junction protein connexin 43 from the membrane to the cytoplasm of Sertoli cells. The possibility that the hexavalent chromium-induced alteration of connexin 43 indirectly mediates the effect of the toxic metal on the blood–testis barrier dynamic is postulated. - Highlights: ► Influence of Cr(VI) on the Sertoli cell barrier and on junctional proteins ► Use of cultured seminiferous tubules in bicameral chambers ► Low concentrations of Cr(VI) (10 μg/l) altered the trans-epithelial resistance. ► Cr(VI) did not alter claudin-11 and N-cadherin. ► Cr(VI) delocalized connexin 43 from the membrane to the cytoplasm of Sertoli cells.

  7. Protein kinase C-dependent regulation of connexin43 gap junctions and hemichannels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alstrøm, Jette Skov; Stroemlund, Line Waring; Nielsen, Morten Schak

    2015-01-01

    Connexin43 (Cx43) generates intercellular gap junction channels involved in, among others, cardiac and brain function. Gap junctions are formed by the docking of two hemichannels from neighbouring cells. Undocked Cx43 hemichannels can upon different stimuli open towards the extracellular matrix...... and allow transport of molecules such as fluorescent dyes and ATP. A range of phosphorylated amino acids have been detected in the C-terminus of Cx43 and their physiological role has been intensively studied both in the gap junctional form of Cx43 and in its hemichannel configuration. We present the current...... knowledge of protein kinase C (PKC)-dependent regulation of Cx43 and discuss the divergent results....

  8. Gap junctions suppress electrical but not [Ca(2+)] heterogeneity in resistance arteries

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hald, Bjørn Olav; Welsh, Donald G; von Holstein-Rathlou, Niels-Henrik

    2014-01-01

    arises, a virtual arteriole was developed that introduces variation in the activities of ion-transport proteins between cells. By varying the level of heterogeneity and subpopulations of gap junctions (GJs), the resulting simulations shows that GJs suppress electrical variation but can only reduce...

  9. Gap Junctions Contribute to the Regulation of Walking-Like Activity in the Adult Mudpuppy (Necturus Maculatus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor Lavrov

    Full Text Available Although gap junctions are widely expressed in the developing central nervous system, the role of electrical coupling of neurons and glial cells via gap junctions in the spinal cord in adults is largely unknown. We investigated whether gap junctions are expressed in the mature spinal cord of the mudpuppy and tested the effects of applying gap junction blocker on the walking-like activity induced by NMDA or glutamate in an in vitro mudpuppy preparation. We found that glial and neural cells in the mudpuppy spinal cord expressed different types of connexins that include connexin 32 (Cx32, connexin 36 (Cx36, connexin 37 (Cx37, and connexin 43 (Cx43. Application of a battery of gap junction blockers from three different structural classes (carbenexolone, flufenamic acid, and long chain alcohols substantially and consistently altered the locomotor-like activity in a dose-dependent manner. In contrast, these blockers did not significantly change the amplitude of the dorsal root reflex, indicating that gap junction blockers did not inhibit neuronal excitability nonselectively in the spinal cord. Taken together, these results suggest that gap junctions play a significant modulatory role in the spinal neural networks responsible for the generation of walking-like activity in the adult mudpuppy.

  10. Gap junctions and hemichannels composed of connexins: potential therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hideyuki eTakeuchi

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Microglia are macrophage-like resident immune cells that contribute to the maintenance of homeostasis in the central nervous system (CNS. Abnormal activation of microglia can cause damage in the CNS, and accumulation of activated microglia is a characteristic pathological observation in neurologic conditions such as trauma, stroke, inflammation, epilepsy, and neurodegenerative diseases. Activated microglia secrete high levels of glutamate, which damages CNS cells and has been implicated as a major cause of neurodegeneration in these conditions. Glutamate-receptor blockers and microglia inhibitors (e.g. minocycline have been examined as therapeutic candidates for several neurodegenerative diseases; however, these compounds exerted little therapeutic benefit because they either perturbed physiological glutamate signals or suppressed the actions of protective microglia. The ideal therapeutic approach would hamper the deleterious roles of activated microglia without diminishing their protective effects. We recently found that abnormally activated microglia secrete glutamate via gap-junction hemichannels on the cell surface. Moreover, administration of gap-junction inhibitors significantly suppressed excessive microglial glutamate release and improved disease symptoms in animal models of neurologic conditions such as stroke, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s disease. Recent evidence also suggests that neuronal and glial communication via gap junctions amplifies neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration. Elucidation of the precise pathologic roles of gap junctions and hemichannels may lead to a novel therapeutic strategies that can slow and halt the progression of neurodegenerative diseases.

  11. Nonlinear gap junctions enable long-distance propagation of pulsating calcium waves in astrocyte networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mati Goldberg

    Full Text Available A new paradigm has recently emerged in brain science whereby communications between glial cells and neuron-glia interactions should be considered together with neurons and their networks to understand higher brain functions. In particular, astrocytes, the main type of glial cells in the cortex, have been shown to communicate with neurons and with each other. They are thought to form a gap-junction-coupled syncytium supporting cell-cell communication via propagating Ca(2+ waves. An identified mode of propagation is based on cytoplasm-to-cytoplasm transport of inositol trisphosphate (IP(3 through gap junctions that locally trigger Ca(2+ pulses via IP(3-dependent Ca(2+-induced Ca(2+ release. It is, however, currently unknown whether this intracellular route is able to support the propagation of long-distance regenerative Ca(2+ waves or is restricted to short-distance signaling. Furthermore, the influence of the intracellular signaling dynamics on intercellular propagation remains to be understood. In this work, we propose a model of the gap-junctional route for intercellular Ca(2+ wave propagation in astrocytes. Our model yields two major predictions. First, we show that long-distance regenerative signaling requires nonlinear coupling in the gap junctions. Second, we show that even with nonlinear gap junctions, long-distance regenerative signaling is favored when the internal Ca(2+ dynamics implements frequency modulation-encoding oscillations with pulsating dynamics, while amplitude modulation-encoding dynamics tends to restrict the propagation range. As a result, spatially heterogeneous molecular properties and/or weak couplings are shown to give rise to rich spatiotemporal dynamics that support complex propagation behaviors. These results shed new light on the mechanisms implicated in the propagation of Ca(2+ waves across astrocytes and the precise conditions under which glial cells may participate in information processing in the brain.

  12. Managing the complexity of communication: regulation of gap junctions by post-translational modification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Axelsen, Lene Nygaard; Callø, Kirstine; von Holstein-Rathlou, Niels-Henrik

    2013-01-01

    Gap junctions are comprised of connexins that form cell-to-cell channels which couple neighboring cells to accommodate the exchange of information. The need for communication does, however, change over time and therefore must be tightly controlled. Although the regulation of connexin protein...... probability, single channel conductance or selectivity. The most extensively investigated post translational modifications are phosphorylations, which have been documented in all mammalian connexins. Besides phosphorylations, some connexins are known to be ubiquitinated, SUMOylated, nitrosylated, hydroxylated...

  13. Conduction gap in graphene strain junctions: direction dependence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nguyen, M Chung; Nguyen, V Hung; Dollfus, P; Nguyen, Huy-Viet

    2014-01-01

    It has been shown in a recent study (Nguyen et al 2014 Nanotechnology 25 165201) that unstrained/strained graphene junctions are promising candidates to improve the performance of graphene transistors which is usually hindered by the gapless nature of graphene. Although the energy bandgap of strained graphene still remains zero, the shift of Dirac points in the k-space due to strain-induced deformation of graphene lattice can lead to the appearance of a finite conduction gap of several hundred meV in strained junctions with a strain of only a few per cent. However, since it depends essentially on the magnitude of the Dirac point shift, this conduction gap strongly depends on the direction of applied strain and the transport direction. In this work, a systematic study of conduction-gap properties with respect to these quantities is presented and the results are carefully analyzed. Our study provides useful information for further investigations to exploit graphene-strained junctions in electronic applications and strain sensors. (paper)

  14. Homeostatic Plasticity Mediated by Rod-Cone Gap Junction Coupling in Retinal Degenerative Dystrophic RCS Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Baoke; Fu, Yan; Weng, Chuanhuang; Liu, Weiping; Zhao, Congjian; Yin, Zheng Qin

    2017-01-01

    Rod-cone gap junctions open at night to allow rod signals to pass to cones and activate the cone-bipolar pathway. This enhances the ability to detect large, dim objects at night. This electrical synaptic switch is governed by the circadian clock and represents a novel form of homeostatic plasticity that regulates retinal excitability according to network activity. We used tracer labeling and ERG recording in the retinae of control and retinal degenerative dystrophic RCS rats. We found that in the control animals, rod-cone gap junction coupling was regulated by the circadian clock via the modulation of the phosphorylation of the melatonin synthetic enzyme arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AANAT). However, in dystrophic RCS rats, AANAT was constitutively phosphorylated, causing rod-cone gap junctions to remain open. A further b/a-wave ratio analysis revealed that dystrophic RCS rats had stronger synaptic strength between photoreceptors and bipolar cells, possibly because rod-cone gap junctions remained open. This was despite the fact that a decrease was observed in the amplitude of both a- and b-waves as a result of the progressive loss of rods during early degenerative stages. These results suggest that electric synaptic strength is increased during the day to allow cone signals to pass to the remaining rods and to be propagated to rod bipolar cells, thereby partially compensating for the weak visual input caused by the loss of rods. PMID:28473754

  15. Costimulation of N-methyl-d-aspartate and muscarinic neuronal receptors modulates gap junctional communication in striatal astrocytes

    OpenAIRE

    Rouach, N.; Tencé, M.; Glowinski, J.; Giaume, C.

    2002-01-01

    Cocultures of neurons and astrocytes from the rat striatum were used to determine whether the stimulation of neuronal receptors could affect the level of intercellular communication mediated by gap junctions in astrocytes. The costimulation of N-methyl-D-asparte (NMDA) and muscarinic receptors led to a prominent reduction of astrocyte gap junctional communication (GJC) in coculture. This treatment was not effective in astrocyte cultures, these cells being devoid of NMDA receptors. Both types ...

  16. Inhibition of Connexin 26/43 and Extracellular-Regulated Kinase Protein Plays a Critical Role in Melatonin Facilitated Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication in Hydrogen Peroxide-Treated HaCaT Keratinocyte Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyo-Jung Lee

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Though melatonin was known to regulate gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC in chick astrocytes and mouse hepatocytes, the underlying mechanism by melatonin was not elucidated in hydrogen peroxide- (H2O2- treated HaCaT keratinocyte cells until now. In the current study, though melatonin at 2 mM and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2 at 300 μM showed weak cytotoxicity in HaCaT keratinocyte cells, melatonin significantly suppressed the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS in H2O2-treated HaCaT cells compared to untreated controls. Also, the scrape-loading dye-transfer assay revealed that melatonin enhances the intercellular communication by introducing Lucifer Yellow into H2O2-treated cells. Furthermore, melatonin significantly enhanced the expression of connexin 26 (Cx26 and connexin 43 (Cx43 at mRNA and protein levels, but not that of connexin 30 (Cx30 in H2O2-treated HaCaT cells. Of note, melatonin attenuated the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated protein kinases (ERKs more than p38 MAPK or JNK in H2O2-treated HaCaT cells. Conversely, ERK inhibitor PD98059 promoted the intercellular communication in H2O2-treated HaCaT cells. Furthermore, combined treatment of melatonin (200 μM and vitamin C (10 μg/mL significantly reduced ROS production in H2O2-treated HaCaT cells. Overall, these findings support the scientific evidences that melatonin facilitates gap junctional intercellular communication in H2O2-treated HaCaT keratinocyte cells via inhibition of connexin 26/43 and ERK as a potent chemopreventive agent.

  17. Gap junction networks can generate both ripple-like and fast ripple-like oscillations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Anna; Traub, Roger D.; Vladimirov, Nikita; Jenkins, Alistair; Nicholson, Claire; Whittaker, Roger G.; Schofield, Ian; Clowry, Gavin J.; Cunningham, Mark O.; Whittington, Miles A.

    2014-01-01

    Fast ripples (FRs) are network oscillations, defined variously as having frequencies of > 150 to > 250 Hz, with a controversial mechanism. FRs appear to indicate a propensity of cortical tissue to originate seizures. Here, we demonstrate field oscillations, at up to 400 Hz, in spontaneously epileptic human cortical tissue in vitro, and present a network model that could explain FRs themselves, and their relation to ‘ordinary’ (slower) ripples. We performed network simulations with model pyramidal neurons, having axons electrically coupled. Ripples ( 250 Hz, were sustained or interrupted, and had little jitter in the firing of individual axons. The form of model FR was similar to spontaneously occurring FRs in excised human epileptic tissue. In vitro, FRs were suppressed by a gap junction blocker. Our data suggest that a given network can produce ripples, FRs, or both, via gap junctions, and that FRs are favored by clusters of axonal gap junctions. If axonal gap junctions indeed occur in epileptic tissue, and are mediated by connexin 26 (recently shown to mediate coupling between immature neocortical pyramidal cells), then this prediction is testable. PMID:24118191

  18. Opposite effects of the gap junction blocker octanol on focal cerebral ischemia occluded for different durations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Wenting; Zhou, Lequan; Liu, Wei; Guan, Li; Li, Xiaoying; Liu, Haimei; Yan, Fuman; Xu, Jinwen; Zeng, Weiyong; Qiu, Min

    2014-06-01

    Protectants and executioners have been demonstrated to be used by gap junctions in focal cerebral ischemia. Certain researchers hypothesized that the opposite role of gap junctions may be associated with the injury extent, which has been demonstrated to be highly correlated with occlusion duration. In order to examine this hypothesis directly, the effects of octanol, a frequently used drug, were examined to investigate the role of gap junctions, in rats following middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) for 30 min/2 h and 24 h reperfusion, respectively. Octanol significantly reduced the infarct volume following 2 h of occlusion concomitant with lower neurological deficits, whereas it enlarged the infarct volume following 30 min of occlusion. Consistently, octanol attenuated the number of transferase dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) positive neurons in the hippocampal CA1 region following 2 h of occlusion, while opposite effects were observed for 30 min of occlusion. Further immunohistochemical studies demonstrated that the expression of B-cell leukemia-2 (Bcl-2, anti-apoptotic protein) was upregulated and that Bcl-2-associated X (Bax, proapoptotic protein) was downregulated following 2 h of occlusion in the octanol group compared with the ischemic group. Conversely, octanol downregulated the expression of the Bcl-2 protein concomitant with increased Bax protein following 30 min of occlusion. These results indicated that the gap junction blocker octanol can protect against ischemic injury following long-term occlusion, however, can aggravate ischemic injury following short-term occlusion.

  19. Sustained inhibition of rat myometrial gap junctions and contractions by lindane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grindatti Carmen M

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gap junctions increase in size and abundance coincident with parturition, forming an intercellular communication network that permits the uterus to develop the forceful, coordinated contractions necessary for delivery of the fetus. Lindane, a pesticide used in the human and veterinary treatment of scabies and lice as well as in agricultural applications, inhibits uterine contractions in vitro, inhibits myometrial gap junctions, and has been associated with prolonged gestation length in rats. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether brief exposures to lindane would elicit sustained inhibition of rat uterine contractile activity and myometrial gap junction intercellular communication. Methods To examine effects on uterine contraction, longitudinal uterine strips isolated from late gestation (day 20 rats were exposed to lindane in muscle baths and monitored for changes in spontaneous phasic contractions during and after exposure to lindane. Lucifer yellow dye transfer between myometrial cells in culture was used to monitor gap junction intercellular communication. Results During a 1-h exposure, 10 micro M and 100 micro M lindane decreased peak force and frequency of uterine contraction but 1 micro M lindane did not. After removal of the exposure buffer, contraction force remained significantly depressed in uterine strips exposed to 100 micro M lindane, returning to less than 50% basal levels 5 h after cessation of lindane exposure. In cultured myometrial myocytes, significant sustained inhibition of Lucifer yellow dye transfer was observed 24 h after lindane exposures as brief as 10 min and as low as 0.1 micro M lindane. Conclusion Brief in vitro exposures to lindane have long-term effects on myometrial functions that are necessary for parturition, inhibiting spontaneous phasic contractions in late gestation rat uterus and gap junction intercellular communication in myometrial cell cultures.

  20. Interfering amino terminal peptides and functional implications for heteromeric gap junction formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard David Veenstra

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Connexin43 (Cx43 is widely expressed in many different tissues of the human body. In cells of some organs, Cx43 is co-expressed with other connexins (Cx, including Cx46 and Cx50 in lens, Cx40 in atrium, Purkinje fibers, and the blood vessel wall, Cx45 in heart, and Cx37 in the ovary. Interactions with the co-expressed connexins may have profound functional implications. The abilities of Cx37, Cx45, Cx46, and Cx50 to function in heteromeric gap junction combinations with Cx43 are well documented. Different studies disagree regarding the ability of Cx43 and Cx40 to produce functional heteromeric gap junctions with each other. We review previous studies regarding the heteromeric interactions of Cx43. The possibility of negative functional interactions between the cytoplasmic pore-forming amino terminal (NT domains of these connexins was assessed using pentameric connexin sequence-specific NT domain (iNT peptides applied to cells expressing homomeric Cx40, Cx37, Cx45, Cx46, and Cx50 gap junctions. A Cx43 iNT peptide corresponding to amino acids 9 to 13 (Ac-KLLDK-NH2 specifically inhibited the electrical coupling of Cx40 gap junctions in a transjunctional (Vj voltage-dependent manner without affecting the function of homologous Cx37, Cx46, Cx50, and Cx45 gap junctions. A Cx40 iNT (Ac-EFLEE-OH peptide counteracted the Vj-dependent block of Cx40 gap junctions, whereas a similarly charged Cx50 iNT (Ac-EEVNE-OH peptide did not, suggesting that these NT domain interactions are not solely based on electrostatics. These data are consistent with functional Cx43 heteromeric gap junction formation with Cx37, Cx45, Cx46, and Cx50 and suggest that Cx40 uniquely experiences functional suppressive interactions with a Cx43 NT domain sequence. These findings present unique functional implications about the heteromeric interactions between Cx43 and Cx40 that may influence cardiac conduction in atrial myocardium and the specialized conduction system.

  1. Effect of sound on gap-junction-based intercellular signaling: Calcium waves under acoustic irradiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deymier, P A; Swinteck, N; Runge, K; Deymier-Black, A; Hoying, J B

    2015-01-01

    We present a previously unrecognized effect of sound waves on gap-junction-based intercellular signaling such as in biological tissues composed of endothelial cells. We suggest that sound irradiation may, through temporal and spatial modulation of cell-to-cell conductance, create intercellular calcium waves with unidirectional signal propagation associated with nonconventional topologies. Nonreciprocity in calcium wave propagation induced by sound wave irradiation is demonstrated in the case of a linear and a nonlinear reaction-diffusion model. This demonstration should be applicable to other types of gap-junction-based intercellular signals, and it is thought that it should be of help in interpreting a broad range of biological phenomena associated with the beneficial therapeutic effects of sound irradiation and possibly the harmful effects of sound waves on health.

  2. The gap junction protein connexin43 interacts with the second PDZ domain of the zona occludens-1 protein

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giepmans, B N; Moolenaar, W H

    1998-01-01

    Gap junctions mediate cell-cell communication in almost all tissues and are composed of channel-forming integral membrane proteins, termed connexins [1-3]. Connexin43 (Cx43) is the most widely expressed and the most well-studied member of this family. Cx43-based cell-cell communication is regulated

  3. Cellular Interaction of Integrin α3β1 with Laminin 5 Promotes Gap Junctional Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lampe, Paul D.; Nguyen, Beth P.; Gil, Susana; Usui, Marcia; Olerud, John; Takada, Yoshikazu; Carter, William G.

    1998-01-01

    Wounding of skin activates epidermal cell migration over exposed dermal collagen and fibronectin and over laminin 5 secreted into the provisional basement membrane. Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) has been proposed to integrate the individual motile cells into a synchronized colony. We found that outgrowths of human keratinocytes in wounds or epibole cultures display parallel changes in the expression of laminin 5, integrin α3β1, E-cadherin, and the gap junctional protein connexin 43. Adhesion of keratinocytes on laminin 5, collagen, and fibronectin was found to differentially regulate GJIC. When keratinocytes were adhered on laminin 5, both structural (assembly of connexin 43 in gap junctions) and functional (dye transfer) assays showed a two- to threefold increase compared with collagen and five- to eightfold over fibronectin. Based on studies with immobilized integrin antibody and integrin-transfected Chinese hamster ovary cells, the interaction of integrin α3β1 with laminin 5 was sufficient to promote GJIC. Mapping of intermediate steps in the pathway linking α3β1–laminin 5 interactions to GJIC indicated that protein trafficking and Rho signaling were both required. We suggest that adhesion of epithelial cells to laminin 5 in the basement membrane via α3β1 promotes GJIC that integrates individual cells into synchronized epiboles. PMID:9852164

  4. The effects of the Histone Deacetylase (HDAC Inhibitor 4-Phenylbutyrate on gap junction conductance and permeability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua eKaufman

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Longitudinal resistance is a key factor in determining cardiac action potential propagation. Action potential conduction velocity has been shown to be proportional to the square root of longitudinal resistance. A major determinant of longitudinal resistance in myocardium is the gap junction channel, comprised of connexin proteins. Within the ventricular myocardium connexin 43 (Cx43 is the dominantly expressed connexin. Reduced numbers of gap junction channels will result in an increase in longitudinal resistance creating the possibility of slowed conduction velocity while increased numbers of channels would potentially result in an increase in conduction velocity. We sought to determine if inhibition of histone deacetylase (HDAC by 4-phenylbutyrate (4-PB, a known inhibitor of HDAC resulted in an increase in junctional conductance and permeability, which is not the result of changes in single channel unitary conductance. These experiments were performed using HEK-293 cells and HeLa cells stably transfected with Cx43. Following treatment with increasing concentrations of 4-PB up-regulation of Cx43 was observed via Western blot analysis. Junctional (gj conductance and unitary single channel conductance were measured via whole-cell patch clamp. In addition intercellular transfer of Lucifer Yellow (LY was determined by fluorescence microscopy. The data in this study indicates that 4-PB is able to enhance functional Cx43 gap junction coupling as indicated by LY dye transfer and multichannel and single channel data along with Western blot analysis. As a corollary, pharmacological agents such as 4-PB have the potential, by increasing intercellular coupling, to reduce the effect of ischemia. It remains to be seen whether drugs like 4-PB will be effective in preventing cardiac maladies.

  5. Improving cardiac gap junction communication as a new antiarrhythmic mechanism: the action of antiarrhythmic peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhein, Stefan; Hagen, Anja; Jozwiak, Joanna; Dietze, Anna; Garbade, Jens; Barten, Markus; Kostelka, Martin; Mohr, Friedrich-Wilhelm

    2010-03-01

    Co-ordinated electrical activation of the heart is maintained by intercellular coupling of cardiomyocytes via gap junctional channels located in the intercalated disks. These channels consist of two hexameric hemichannels, docked to each other, provided by either of the adjacent cells. Thus, a complete gap junction channel is made from 12 protein subunits, the connexins. While 21 isoforms of connexins are presently known, cardiomyocytes typically are coupled by Cx43 (most abundant), Cx40 or Cx45. Some years ago, antiarrhythmic peptides were discovered and synthesised, which were shown to increase macroscopic gap junction conductance (electrical coupling) and enhance dye transfer (metabolic coupling). The lead substance of these peptides is AAP10 (H-Gly-Ala-Gly-Hyp-Pro-Tyr-CONH(2)), a peptide with a horseshoe-like spatial structure as became evident from two-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance studies. A stable D: -amino-acid derivative of AAP10, rotigaptide, as well as a non-peptide analogue, gap-134, has been developed in recent years. Antiarrhythmic peptides act on Cx43 and Cx45 gap junctions but not on Cx40 channels. AAP10 has been shown to enhance intercellular communication in rat, rabbit and human cardiomyocytes. Antiarrhythmic peptides are effective against ventricular tachyarrhythmias, such as late ischaemic (type IB) ventricular fibrillation, CaCl(2) or aconitine-induced arrhythmia. Interestingly, the effect of antiarrhythmic peptides is higher in partially uncoupled cells and was shown to be related to maintained Cx43 phosphorylation, while arrhythmogenic conditions like ischaemia result in Cx43 dephosphorylation and intercellular decoupling. It is still a matter of debate whether these drugs also act against atrial fibrillation. The present review outlines the development of this group of peptides and derivatives, their mode of action and molecular mechanisms, and discusses their possible therapeutic potential.

  6. The antiarrhythmic peptide analog rotigaptide (ZP123) stimulates gap junction intercellular communication in human osteoblasts and prevents decrease in femoral trabecular bone strength in ovariectomized rats

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Niklas Rye; Teilmann, Stefan Cuoni; Henriksen, Zanne

    2005-01-01

    Gap junctions play an important role in bone development and function, but the lack of pharmacological tools has hampered the gap junction research. The antiarrhythmic peptides stimulate gap junction communication between cardiomyocytes, but effects in noncardiac tissue are unknown. The purpose...... of this study was to examine whether antiarrhythmic peptides, which are small peptides increasing gap junctional conductivity, show specific binding to osteoblasts and investigate the effect of the stable analog rotigaptide (ZP123) on gap junctional intercellular communication in vitro and on bone mass...... and strength in vivo. Cell coupling and calcium signaling were assessed in vitro on human, primary, osteoblastic cells. In vivo effects of rotigaptide on bone strength and density were determined 4 wk after ovariectomy in rats treated with either vehicle, sc injection twice daily (300 nmol per kilogram body...

  7. Phylogenetic and bioinformatic analysis of gap junction-related proteins, innexins, pannexins and connexins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fushiki, Daisuke; Hamada, Yasuo; Yoshimura, Ryoichi; Endo, Yasuhisa

    2010-04-01

    All multi-cellular animals, including hydra, insects and vertebrates, develop gap junctions, which communicate directly with neighboring cells. Gap junctions consist of protein families called connexins in vertebrates and innexins in invertebrates. Connexins and innexins have no homology in their amino acid sequence, but both are thought to have some similar characteristics, such as a tetra-membrane-spanning structure, formation of a channel by hexamer, and transmission of small molecules (e.g. ions) to neighboring cells. Pannexins were recently identified as a homolog of innexins in vertebrate genomes. Although pannexins are thought to share the function of intercellular communication with connexins and innexins, there is little information about the relationship among these three protein families of gap junctions. We phylgenetically and bioinformatically examined these protein families and other tetra-membrane-spanning proteins using a database and three analytical softwares. The clades formed by pannexin families do not belong to the species classification but do to paralogs of each member of pannexins. Amino acid sequences of pannexins are closely related to those of innexins but less to those of connexins. These data suggest that innexins and pannexins have a common origin, but the relationship between innexins/pannexins and connexins is as slight as that of other tetra-membrane-spanning members.

  8. The alpha2-adrenoreceptor agonist dexmedetomidine protects against lipopolysaccharide-induced apoptosis via inhibition of gap junctions in lung fibroblasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yuan; Tan, Xiaoming; Xue, Lianfang

    2018-01-01

    The α2-adrenoceptor inducer dexmedetomidine protects against acute lung injury (ALI), but the mechanism of this effect is largely unknown. The present study investigated the effect of dexmedetomidine on apoptosis induced by lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and the relationship between this effect and gap junction intercellular communication in human lung fibroblast cell line. Flow cytometry was used to detect apoptosis induced by LPS. Parachute dye coupling assay was used to measure gap junction function, and western blot analysis was used to determine the expression levels of connexin43 (Cx43). The results revealed that exposure of human lung fibroblast cell line to LPS for 24 h increased the apoptosis, and pretreatment of dexmedetomidine and 18α-GA significantly reduced LPS-induced apoptosis. Dexmedetomidine exposure for 1 h inhibited gap junction function mainly via a decrease in Cx43 protein levels in human lung fibroblast cell line. These results demonstrated that the inhibition of gap junction intercellular communication by dexmedetomidine affected the LPS-induced apoptosis through inhibition of gap junction function by reducing Cx43 protein levels. The present study provides evidence of a novel mechanism underlying the effects of analgesics in counteracting ALI. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Gap-Junctional communication between developing Drosophila muscles is essential for their normal development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todman, M G; Baines, R A; Stebbings, L A; Davies, J A; Bacon, J P

    1999-01-01

    Recent experiments have demonstrated that a family of proteins, known as the innexins, are structural components of invertebrate gap junctions. The shaking-B (shak-B) locus of Drosophila encodes two members of this emerging family, Shak-B(lethal) and Shak-B(neural). This study focuses on the role of Shak-B gap junctions in the development of embryonic and larval muscle. During embryogenesis, shak-B transcripts are expressed in a subset of the somatic muscles; expression is strong in ventral oblique muscles (VO4-6) but only weak in ventral longitudinals (VL3 and 4). Carboxyfluorescein injected into VO4 of wild-type early stage 16 embryos spreads, via gap junctions, to label adjacent muscles, including VL3 and 4. In shak-B2 embryos (in which the shak-B(neural) function is disrupted), dye injected into VO4 fails to spread into other muscles. In the first instar larva, when dye coupling between muscles is no longer present, another effect of the shak-B2 mutation is revealed by whole-cell voltage clamp. In a calcium-free saline, only two voltage-activated potassium currents are present in wild-type muscles; a fast IA and a slow IK current. In shak-B2 larvae, these two currents are significantly reduced in magnitude in VO4 and 5, but remain normal in VL3. Expression of shak-B(neural) in a shak-B2 background fully rescues both dye coupling in embryonic muscle and whole-cell currents in first instar VO4 and 5. Our observations show that Shak-B(neural) is one of a set of embryonic gap-junction proteins, and that it is required for the normal temporal development of potassium currents in some larval muscles.

  10. Quantification of gap junctional intercellular communication based on digital image analysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hofgaard, Johannes P; Mollerup, Sarah; Holstein-Rathlou, Niels-Henrik

    2009-01-01

    Intercellular communication via gap junction channels can be quantified by several methods based on diffusion of fluorescent dyes or metabolites. Given the variation in intercellular coupling of cells, even under untreated control conditions, it is of essence to quantify the coupling between...... and in cells receiving dye by intercellular diffusion. The analysis performed is semiautomatic, and comparison with traditional cell counting shows that this method reliably determines the effect of uncoupling by several interventions. This new method of analysis yields a rapid and objective quantification...

  11. Methamphetamine compromises gap junctional communication in astrocytes and neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellano, Paul; Nwagbo, Chisom; Martinez, Luis R; Eugenin, Eliseo A

    2016-05-01

    Methamphetamine (meth) is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that results in psychological and physical dependency. The long-term effects of meth within the CNS include neuronal plasticity changes, blood-brain barrier compromise, inflammation, electrical dysfunction, neuronal/glial toxicity, and an increased risk to infectious diseases including HIV. Most of the reported meth effects in the CNS are related to dysregulation of chemical synapses by altering the release and uptake of neurotransmitters, especially dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. However, little is known about the effects of meth on connexin (Cx) containing channels, such as gap junctions (GJ) and hemichannels (HC). We examined the effects of meth on Cx expression, function, and its role in NeuroAIDS. We found that meth altered Cx expression and localization, decreased GJ communication between neurons and astrocytes, and induced the opening of Cx43/Cx36 HC. Furthermore, we found that these changes in GJ and HC induced by meth treatment were mediated by activation of dopamine receptors, suggesting that dysregulation of dopamine signaling induced by meth is essential for GJ and HC compromise. Meth-induced changes in GJ and HC contributed to amplified CNS toxicity by dysregulating glutamate metabolism and increasing the susceptibility of neurons and astrocytes to bystander apoptosis induced by HIV. Together, our results indicate that connexin containing channels, GJ and HC, are essential in the pathogenesis of meth and increase the sensitivity of the CNS to HIV CNS disease. Methamphetamine (meth) is an extremely addictive central nervous system stimulant. Meth reduced gap junctional (GJ) communication by inducing internalization of connexin-43 (Cx43) in astrocytes and reducing expression of Cx36 in neurons by a mechanism involving activation of dopamine receptors (see cartoon). Meth-induced changes in Cx containing channels increased extracellular levels of glutamate and resulted in higher

  12. The B[a]P-increased intercellular communication via translocation of connexin-43 into gap junctions reduces apoptosis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tekpli, X.; Rivedal, E.; Gorria, M.; Landvik, N.E.; Rissel, M.; Dimanche-Boitrel, M.-T.; Baffet, G.; Holme, J.A.; Lagadic-Gossmann, D.

    2010-01-01

    Gap junctions are channels in plasma membrane composed of proteins called connexins. These channels are organized in special domains between cells, and provide for direct gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC), allowing diffusion of signalling molecules < 1 kD. GJIC regulates cell homeostasis and notably the balance between proliferation, cell cycle arrest, cell survival and apoptosis. Here, we have investigated benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P) effects on GJIC and on the subcellular localization of the major protein of gap junction: connexin-43 (Cx43). Our results showed that B[a]P increased GJIC between mouse hepatoma Hepa1c1c7 cells via translocation of Cx43 from Golgi apparatus and lipid rafts into gap junction plaques. Interestingly, inhibition of GJIC by chlordane or small interference RNA directed against Cx43 enhanced B[a]P-induced apoptosis in Hepa1c1c7 cells. The increased apoptosis caused by inhibition of GJIC appeared to be mediated by ERK/MAPK pathway. It is suggested that B[a]P could induce transfer of cell survival signal or dilute cell death signal via regulation of ERK/MAPK through GJIC.

  13. Localization of connexin 43 gap junctions and hemichannels in tanycytes of adult mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szilvásy-Szabó, Anett; Varga, Edina; Beliczai, Zsuzsa; Lechan, Ronald M; Fekete, Csaba

    2017-10-15

    Tanycytes are specialized glial cells lining the lateral walls and the floor of the third ventricle behind the optic chiasm. In addition to functioning as barrier cells, they also have an important role in the regulation of neuroendocrine axes and energy homeostasis. To determine whether tanycytes communicate with each other via Connexin 43 (Cx43) gap junctions, individual tanycytes were loaded with Lucifer yellow (LY) through a patch pipette. In all cases, LY filled a larger group of tanycytes as well as blood vessels adjacent to tanycyte processes. The Cx43-blocker, carbenoxolone, inhibited spreading of LY. The greatest density of Cx43-immunoreactive spots was observed in the cell membrane of α-tanycyte cell bodies. Cx43-immunoreactivity was also present in the membrane of β-tanycyte cell bodies, but in lower density. Processes of both types of tanycytes also contained Cx43-immunoreactivity. At the ultrastructural level, Cx43-immunoreactivity was present in the cell membrane of all types of tanycytes including their ventricular surface, but gap junctions were more frequent among α-tanycytes. Cx43-immunoreactivity was also observed in the cell membrane between contacting tanycyte endfeet processes, and between tanycyte endfeet process and axon varicosities in the external zone of the median eminence and capillaries in the arcuate nucleus and median eminence. These results suggest that gap junctions are present not only among tanycytes, but also between tanycytes and the axons of hypophysiotropic neurons. Cx43 hemichannels may also facilitate the transport between tanycytes and extracellular fluids, including the cerebrospinal fluid, extracellular space of the median eminence and bloodstream. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Transient suppression of gap junctional intercellular communication after exposure to 100-nanosecond pulsed electric fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steuer, Anna; Schmidt, Anke; Labohá, Petra; Babica, Pavel; Kolb, Juergen F

    2016-12-01

    Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) is an important mechanism that is involved and affected in many diseases and injuries. So far, the effect of nanosecond pulsed electric fields (nsPEFs) on the communication between cells was not investigated. An in vitro approach is presented with rat liver epithelial WB-F344 cells grown and exposed in a monolayer. In order to observe sub-lethal effects, cells were exposed to pulsed electric fields with a duration of 100ns and amplitudes between 10 and 20kV/cm. GJIC strongly decreased within 15min after treatment but recovered within 24h. Gene expression of Cx43 was significantly decreased and associated with a reduced total amount of Cx43 protein. In addition, MAP kinases p38 and Erk1/2, involved in Cx43 phosphorylation, were activated and Cx43 became hyperphosphorylated. Immunofluorescent staining of Cx43 displayed the disassembly of gap junctions. Further, a reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton was observed whereas tight junction protein ZO-1 was not significantly affected. All effects were field- and time-dependent and most pronounced within 30 to 60min after treatment. A better understanding of a possible manipulation of GJIC by nsPEFs might eventually offer a possibility to develop and improve treatments. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Long-range gap junctional signaling controls oncogene-mediated tumorigenesis in Xenopus laevis embryos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brook T Chernet

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In addition to the immediate microenvironment, long-range signaling may be an important component of cancer. Molecular-genetic analyses have implicated gap junctions – key mediators of cell-cell communication – in carcinogenesis. We recently showed that the resting voltage potential of distant cell groups is a key determinant of metastatic transformation and tumor induction. Here, we show in the Xenopus laevis model that gap junctional communication (GJC is a modulator of the long-range bioelectric signaling that regulates tumor formation. Genetic disruption of GJC taking place within tumors, within remote host tissues, or between the host and tumors – significantly lowers the incidence of tumors induced by KRAS mutations. The most pronounced suppression of tumor incidence was observed upon GJC disruption taking place farther away from oncogene-expressing cells, revealing a role for GJC in distant cells in the control of tumor growth. In contrast, enhanced GJC communication through the overexpression of wild-type connexin Cx26 increased tumor incidence. Our data confirm a role for GJC in tumorigenesis, and reveal that this effect is non-local. Based on these results and on published data on movement of ions through GJs, we present a quantitative model linking the GJC coupling and bioelectrical state of cells to the ability of oncogenes to initiate tumorigenesis. When integrated with data on endogenous bioelectric signaling during left-right patterning, the model predicts differential tumor incidence outcomes depending on the spatial configurations of gap junction paths relative to tumor location and major anatomical body axes. Testing these predictions, we found that the strongest influence of GJ modulation on tumor suppression by hyperpolarization occurred along the embryonic left-right axis. Together, these data reveal new, long-range aspects of cancer control by the host’s physiological parameters.

  16. PI3K/Akt signaling is involved in the disruption of gap junctional communication caused by v-Src and TNF-α.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Satoko; Hyodo, Toshinori; Hasegawa, Hitoki; Yuan, Hong; Hamaguchi, Michinari; Senga, Takeshi

    2010-09-17

    Gap junctional communication, which is mediated by the connexin protein family, is essential for the maintenance of normal tissue function and homeostasis. Loss of intercellular communication results in a failure to coordinately regulate cellular functions, and it can facilitate tumorigenesis. Expression of oncogenes and stimulation with cytokines has been shown to suppress intercellular communication; however, the exact mechanism by which intercellular communication is disrupted by these factors remains uncertain. In this report, we show that Akt is essential for the disruption of gap junctional communication in v-Src-transformed cells. In addition, inhibition of Akt restores gap junctional communication after it is suppressed by TNF-α signaling. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the expression of a constitutively active form of Akt1, but not of Akt2 or Akt3, is sufficient to suppress gap junctional communication. Our results clearly define Akt1 as one of the critical regulators of gap junctional communication. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. TC-PTP directly interacts with connexin43 to regulate gap junction intercellular communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Hanjun; Spagnol, Gaelle; Naslavsky, Naava; Caplan, Steve; Sorgen, Paul L.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Protein kinases have long been reported to regulate connexins; however, little is known about the involvement of phosphatases in the modulation of intercellular communication through gap junctions and the subsequent downstream effects on cellular processes. Here, we identify an interaction between the T-cell protein tyrosine phosphatase (TC-PTP, officially known as PTPN2) and the carboxyl terminus of connexin43 (Cx43, officially known as GJA1). Two cell lines, normal rat kidney (NRK) cells endogenously expressing Cx43 and an NRK-derived cell line expressing v-Src with temperature-sensitive activity, were used to demonstrate that EGF and v-Src stimulation, respectively, induced TC-PTP to colocalize with Cx43 at the plasma membrane. Cell biology experiments using phospho-specific antibodies and biophysical assays demonstrated that the interaction is direct and that TC-PTP dephosphorylates Cx43 residues Y247 and Y265, but does not affect v-Src. Transfection of TC-PTP also indirectly led to the dephosphorylation of Cx43 S368, by inactivating PKCα and PKCδ, with no effect on the phosphorylation of S279 and S282 (MAPK-dependent phosphorylation sites). Dephosphorylation maintained Cx43 gap junctions at the plaque and partially reversed the channel closure caused by v-Src-mediated phosphorylation of Cx43. Understanding dephosphorylation, along with the well-documented roles of Cx43 phosphorylation, might eventually lead to methods to modulate the regulation of gap junction channels, with potential benefits for human health. PMID:24849651

  18. Silver nanoparticles increase connexin43-mediated gap junctional intercellular communication in HaCaT cells through activation of reactive oxygen species and mitogen-activated protein kinase signal pathway

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Qin, Yu; Han, Limin; Yang, Di

    2018-01-01

    Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are widely used in health and consumer products that routinely contact skin. However, the biological effects and possible mechanisms of AgNPs on skin remain unclear. Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) plays a critical role in multicellular organisms to ...

  19. Gap junctions are selectively associated with interlocking ball-and-sockets but not protrusions in the lens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biswas, Sondip K; Lee, Jai Eun; Brako, Lawrence; Jiang, Jean X; Lo, Woo-Kuen

    2010-11-09

    Ball-and-sockets and protrusions are specialized interlocking membrane domains between lens fibers of all species studied. Ball-and-sockets and protrusions are similar in their shape, size, and surface morphology, and are traditionally believed to play a key role in maintaining fiber-to-fiber stability. Here, we evaluate the hypothesis that ball-and-sockets and protrusions possess important structural and functional differences during fiber cell differentiation and maturation. Intact lenses of leghorn chickens (E7 days to P62 weeks old) and rhesus monkeys (1.5-20 years old) were studied with SEM, freeze-fracture TEM, freeze-fracture immunogold labeling (FRIL), and filipin cytochemistry for membrane cholesterol detection. SEM showed that ball-and-sockets were distributed along the long and short sides of hexagonal fiber cells, whereas protrusions were located along the cell corners, from superficial to deep cortical regions in both chicken and monkey lenses. Importantly, by freeze-fracture TEM, we discovered the selective association of gap junctions with all ball-and-sockets examined, but not with protrusions, in both species. In the embryonic chicken lens (E18), the abundant distribution of ball-and-socket gap junctions was regularly found in an approximate zone extending at least 300 μm deep from the equatorial surface of the superficial cortical fibers. Many ball-and-socket gap junctions often protruded deeply into neighboring cells. However, in the mature fibers of monkey lenses, several ball-and-sockets exhibited only partial occupancy of gap junctions with disorganized connexons, possibly due to degradation of gap junctions during fiber maturation and aging. FRIL analysis confirmed that both connexin46 (Cx46) and connexin50 (Cx50) antibodies specifically labeled ball-and-socket gap junctions, but not protrusions. Furthermore, filipin cytochemistry revealed that the ball-and-socket gap junctions contained different amounts of cholesterol (i.e., cholesterol

  20. Treatment with the gap junction modifier rotigaptide (ZP123) reduces infarct size in rats with chronic myocardial infarction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haugan, Ketil; Marcussen, Niels; Kjølbye, Anne Louise

    2006-01-01

    Treatment with non-selective drugs (eg, long-chain alcohols, halothane) that reduce gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) is associated with reduced infarct size after myocardial infarction (MI). Therefore, it has been suggested that gap junction intercellular communication stimulating ...

  1. Effects of gap junction blockers on human neocortical synchronization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gigout, S; Louvel, J; Kawasaki, H; D'Antuono, M; Armand, V; Kurcewicz, I; Olivier, A; Laschet, J; Turak, B; Devaux, B; Pumain, R; Avoli, M

    2006-06-01

    Field potentials and intracellular recordings were obtained from human neocortical slices to study the role of gap junctions (GJ) in neuronal network synchronization. First, we examined the effects of GJ blockers (i.e., carbenoxolone, octanol, quinine, and quinidine) on the spontaneous synchronous events (duration = 0.2-1.1 s; intervals of occurrence = 3-27 s) generated by neocortical slices obtained from temporal lobe epileptic patients during application of 4-aminopyridine (4AP, 50 muM) and glutamatergic receptor antagonists. The synchronicity of these potentials (recorded at distances up to 5 mm) was decreased by GJ blockers within 20 min of application, while prolonged GJ blockers treatment at higher doses made them disappear with different time courses. Second, we found that slices from patients with focal cortical dysplasia (FCD) could generate in normal medium spontaneous synchronous discharges (duration = 0.4-8 s; intervals of occurrence = 0.5-90 s) that were (i) abolished by NMDA receptor antagonists and (ii) slowed down by carbenoxolone. Finally, octanol or carbenoxolone blocked 4AP-induced ictal-like discharges (duration = up to 35 s) in FCD slices. These data indicate that GJ play a role in synchronizing human neocortical networks and may implement epileptiform activity in FCD.

  2. Local dynamics of gap-junction-coupled interneuron networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lau, Troy; Zochowski, Michal; Gage, Gregory J; Berke, Joshua D

    2010-01-01

    Interneurons coupled by both electrical gap-junctions (GJs) and chemical GABAergic synapses are major components of forebrain networks. However, their contributions to the generation of specific activity patterns, and their overall contributions to network function, remain poorly understood. Here we demonstrate, using computational methods, that the topological properties of interneuron networks can elicit a wide range of activity dynamics, and either prevent or permit local pattern formation. We systematically varied the topology of GJ and inhibitory chemical synapses within simulated networks, by changing connection types from local to random, and changing the total number of connections. As previously observed we found that randomly coupled GJs lead to globally synchronous activity. In contrast, we found that local GJ connectivity may govern the formation of highly spatially heterogeneous activity states. These states are inherently temporally unstable when the input is uniformly random, but can rapidly stabilize when the network detects correlations or asymmetries in the inputs. We show a correspondence between this feature of network activity and experimental observations of transient stabilization of striatal fast-spiking interneurons (FSIs), in electrophysiological recordings from rats performing a simple decision-making task. We suggest that local GJ coupling enables an active search-and-select function of striatal FSIs, which contributes to the overall role of cortical-basal ganglia circuits in decision-making

  3. Regulation of gap junction function and Connexin 43 expression by cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (CYPOR)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Polusani, Srikanth R.; Kar, Rekha; Riquelme, Manuel A.; Masters, Bettie Sue; Panda, Satya P.

    2011-01-01

    Highlights: → Humans with severe forms of cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (CYPOR) mutations show bone defects as observed in Antley-Bixler Syndrome. → First report showing knockdown of CYPOR in osteoblasts decreased Connexin 43 (Cx43) protein levels. Cx43 is known to play an important role in bone modeling. → Knockdown of CYPOR decreased Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication and hemichannel activity. → Knockdown of CYPOR decreased Cx43 in mouse primary calvarial osteoblasts. → Decreased Cx43 expression was observed at the transcriptional level. -- Abstract: Cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (CYPOR) is a microsomal electron-transferring enzyme containing both FAD and FMN as co-factors, which provides the reducing equivalents to various redox partners, such as cytochromes P450 (CYPs), heme oxygenase (HO), cytochrome b 5 and squalene monooxygenase. Human patients with severe forms of CYPOR mutation show bone defects such as cranio- and humeroradial synostoses and long bone fractures, known as Antley-Bixler-like Syndrome (ABS). To elucidate the role of CYPOR in bone, we knocked-down CYPOR in multiple osteoblast cell lines using RNAi technology. In this study, knock-down of CYPOR decreased the expression of Connexin 43 (Cx43), known to play a critical role in bone formation, modeling, and remodeling. Knock-down of CYPOR also decreased Gap Junction Intercellular Communication (GJIC) and hemichannel activity. Promoter luciferase assays revealed that the decrease in expression of Cx43 in CYPOR knock-down cells was due to transcriptional repression. Primary osteoblasts isolated from bone specific Por knock-down mice calvariae confirmed the findings in the cell lines. Taken together, our study provides novel insights into the regulation of gap junction function by CYPOR and suggests that Cx43 may play an important role(s) in CYPOR-mediated bone defects seen in patients.

  4. Regulation of gap junction function and Connexin 43 expression by cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (CYPOR)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Polusani, Srikanth R.; Kar, Rekha; Riquelme, Manuel A.; Masters, Bettie Sue [The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Department of Biochemistry, San Antonio, TX 78229 (United States); Panda, Satya P., E-mail: panda@uthscsa.edu [The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Department of Biochemistry, San Antonio, TX 78229 (United States)

    2011-08-05

    Highlights: {yields} Humans with severe forms of cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (CYPOR) mutations show bone defects as observed in Antley-Bixler Syndrome. {yields} First report showing knockdown of CYPOR in osteoblasts decreased Connexin 43 (Cx43) protein levels. Cx43 is known to play an important role in bone modeling. {yields} Knockdown of CYPOR decreased Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication and hemichannel activity. {yields} Knockdown of CYPOR decreased Cx43 in mouse primary calvarial osteoblasts. {yields} Decreased Cx43 expression was observed at the transcriptional level. -- Abstract: Cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (CYPOR) is a microsomal electron-transferring enzyme containing both FAD and FMN as co-factors, which provides the reducing equivalents to various redox partners, such as cytochromes P450 (CYPs), heme oxygenase (HO), cytochrome b{sub 5} and squalene monooxygenase. Human patients with severe forms of CYPOR mutation show bone defects such as cranio- and humeroradial synostoses and long bone fractures, known as Antley-Bixler-like Syndrome (ABS). To elucidate the role of CYPOR in bone, we knocked-down CYPOR in multiple osteoblast cell lines using RNAi technology. In this study, knock-down of CYPOR decreased the expression of Connexin 43 (Cx43), known to play a critical role in bone formation, modeling, and remodeling. Knock-down of CYPOR also decreased Gap Junction Intercellular Communication (GJIC) and hemichannel activity. Promoter luciferase assays revealed that the decrease in expression of Cx43 in CYPOR knock-down cells was due to transcriptional repression. Primary osteoblasts isolated from bone specific Por knock-down mice calvariae confirmed the findings in the cell lines. Taken together, our study provides novel insights into the regulation of gap junction function by CYPOR and suggests that Cx43 may play an important role(s) in CYPOR-mediated bone defects seen in patients.

  5. Intracerebroventricular Injection of Lipopolysaccharide Increases Gene Expression of Connexin32 Gap Junction in Rat Hippocampus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Abbasian

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Gap junctions are intercellular membrane channels that provide direct cytoplasmic continuity between adjacent cells. This communication can be affected by changes in expression of gap junctional subunits called Connexins (Cx. Changes in the expression and function of connexins are associated with number of brain neurodegenerative diseases. Neuroinflammation is a hallmark of various central nervous system (CNS diseases, like multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease and epilepsy. Neuroinflammation causes change in Connexins expression. Hippocampus, one of the main brain regions with a wide network of Gap junctions between different neural cell types, has particular vulnerability to damage and consequent inflammation. Cx32 – among Connexins– is expressed in hippocampal Olygodandrocytes and some neural subpopulations. Although multiple lines of evidence indicate that there is an association between neuroinflammation and the expression of connexin, the direct effect of neuroinflammation on the expression of connexins has not been well studied. In the present study, the effect of neuroinflammation induced by the Lipopolysaccharide (LPS on Cx32 gene and protein expressions in rat hippocampus is evaluated. Methods: LPS (2.5μg/rat was infused into the rat cerebral ventricles for 14 days. Cx32 mRNA and protein levels were measured by Real Time PCR and Western Blot after 1st, 7th and 14th injection of LPS in the hippocampus. Results: Significant increase in Cx32 mRNA expression was observed after 7th injection of LPS (P<0.001. However, no significant change was observed in Cx32 protein level. Conclusion: LPS seems to modify Cx32 GJ communication in the hippocampus at transcription level but not at translation or post-translation level. In order to have a full view concerning modification of Cx32 GJ communication, effect of LPS on Cx32 channel gating should also be determined.

  6. Abundance of gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses in adult Mosquitofish spinal cord neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose L Serrano-Velez

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Dye-coupling, whole-mount immunohistochemistry for gap junction channel protein connexin 35 (Cx35, and freeze-fracture replica immunogold labeling (FRIL reveal an abundance of electrical synapses/gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses in the 14th spinal segment that innervates the adult male gonopodium of Western Mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis (Mosquitofish.To study gap junctions’ role in fast motor behavior, we used a minimally-invasive neural-tract-tracing technique to introduce gap junction-permeant or -impermeant dyes into deep muscles controlling the gonopodium of the adult male Mosquitofish, a teleost fish that rapidly transfers (complete in 50 of the 62 gap junctions at mixed synapses are in the 14th spinal segment.Our results support and extend studies showing gap junctions at mixed synapses in spinal cord segments involved in control of genital reflexes in rodents, and they suggest a link between mixed synapses and fast motor behavior. The findings provide a basis for studies of specific roles of spinal neurons in the generation/regulation of sex-specific behavior and for studies of gap junctions’ role in regulating fast motor behavior. Finally, the CoPA IN provides a novel candidate neuron for future studies of gap junctions and neural control of fast motor behaviors.

  7. Gold nanoparticle-mediated (GNOME) laser perforation: a new method for a high-throughput analysis of gap junction intercellular coupling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Begandt, Daniela; Bader, Almke; Antonopoulos, Georgios C; Schomaker, Markus; Kalies, Stefan; Meyer, Heiko; Ripken, Tammo; Ngezahayo, Anaclet

    2015-10-01

    The present report evaluates the advantages of using the gold nanoparticle-mediated laser perforation (GNOME LP) technique as a computer-controlled cell optoperforation to introduce Lucifer yellow (LY) into cells in order to analyze the gap junction coupling in cell monolayers. To permeabilize GM-7373 endothelial cells grown in a 24 multiwell plate with GNOME LP, a laser beam of 88 μm in diameter was applied in the presence of gold nanoparticles and LY. After 10 min to allow dye uptake and diffusion through gap junctions, we observed a LY-positive cell band of 179 ± 8 μm width. The presence of the gap junction channel blocker carbenoxolone during the optoperforation reduced the LY-positive band to 95 ± 6 μm. Additionally, a forskolin-related enhancement of gap junction coupling, recently found using the scrape loading technique, was also observed using GNOME LP. Further, an automatic cell imaging and a subsequent semi-automatic quantification of the images using a java-based ImageJ-plugin were performed in a high-throughput sequence. Moreover, the GNOME LP was used on cells such as RBE4 rat brain endothelial cells, which cannot be mechanically scraped as well as on three-dimensionally cultivated cells, opening the possibility to implement the GNOME LP technique for analysis of gap junction coupling in tissues. We conclude that the GNOME LP technique allows a high-throughput automated analysis of gap junction coupling in cells. Moreover this non-invasive technique could be used on monolayers that do not support mechanical scraping as well as on cells in tissue allowing an in vivo/ex vivo analysis of gap junction coupling.

  8. Synopsis of the International Gap Junction Conference in Elsinore, Denmark August 5-9, 2007

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Willecke, Klaus; Nielsen, Morten Schak

    2008-01-01

    This synopsis covers the main results and conclusions from the platform presentations during the International Gap Junction Conference. More detailed information is provided in the mini reviews on controversial scientific issues, short reports of research results and conference abstracts publishe...

  9. [Inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication protects astrocytes from hypoxia/reoxygenation injury].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Xu-Hui; Gu, Yu-Chen; Jiao, Hao; Yu, Li; Dong, Shu-Ying

    2015-01-01

    To investigate the effects of inhibiting gap junctional intercellular communication on hypoxia/reoxygenation injury in astrocytes. Primary cultured cerebral cortical astrocytes of neonate rats were divided into normal control group, hypoxia reoxygenation injury group and 18-α-glycyrrhetinic acid and oleamide (gap junctional intercellular channel inhibitors) group. The gap junction intercellular communication was determined by Parachute assay. The viability of astrocyes was detected by MTT assay. The apoptosis of astrocytes were detected with annexin V/PI and Hoechst 33258 staining. Compared with the normal control group, the gap junctional function of astrocytes was increased significantly in ischemia/reperfusion group (Pastrocytes decreased significantly (Pastrocytes in18-α-glycyrrhetinic acid and oleamide group decreased significantly (Pastrocytes increased significantly (Pastrocytes.

  10. Modulation of gap junctional intercellular communication between human smooth muscle cells by leukocyte-derived growth factors and cytokines in relation to atherogenesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mensink, A.

    1997-01-01


    In this thesis, the effect of leukocyte-derived growth factors and cytokines on GJIC between SMC was investigated. GJIC is regarded as an important mechanism in the control of cell growth, cell differentiation and tissue homeostasis. Disturbance of SMC growth control is regarded to be a

  11. Tumor-induced loss of mural Connexin 43 gap junction activity promotes endothelial proliferation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choudhary, Mayur; Naczki, Christine; Chen, Wenhong; Barlow, Keith D.; Case, L. Douglas; Metheny-Barlow, Linda J.

    2015-01-01

    Proper functional association between mural cells and endothelial cells (EC) causes EC of blood vessels to become quiescent. Mural cells on tumor vessels exhibit decreased attachment to EC, which allows vessels to be unstable and proliferative. The mechanisms by which tumors prevent proper association between mural cells and EC are not well understood. Since gap junctions (GJ) play an important role in cell-cell contact and communication, we investigated whether loss of GJ plays a role in tumor-induced mural cell dissociation. Mural cell regulation of endothelial proliferation was assessed by direct co-culture assays of fluorescently labeled cells quantified by flow cytometry or plate reader. Gap junction function was assessed by parachute assay. Connexin 43 (Cx43) protein in mural cells exposed to conditioned media from cancer cells was assessed by Western and confocal microscopy; mRNA levels were assessed by quantitative real-time PCR. Expression vectors or siRNA were utilized to overexpress or knock down Cx43. Tumor growth and angiogenesis was assessed in mouse hosts deficient for Cx43. Using parachute dye transfer assay, we demonstrate that media conditioned by MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells diminishes GJ communication between mural cells (vascular smooth muscle cells, vSMC) and EC. Both protein and mRNA of the GJ component Connexin 43 (Cx43) are downregulated in mural cells by tumor-conditioned media; media from non-tumorigenic MCF10A cells had no effect. Loss of GJ communication by Cx43 siRNA knockdown, treatment with blocking peptide, or exposure to tumor-conditioned media diminishes the ability of mural cells to inhibit EC proliferation in co-culture assays, while overexpression of Cx43 in vSMC restores GJ and endothelial inhibition. Breast tumor cells implanted into mice heterozygous for Cx43 show no changes in tumor growth, but exhibit significantly increased tumor vascularization determined by CD31 staining, along with decreased mural cell support

  12. Gap junctions and epileptic seizures--two sides of the same coin?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vladislav Volman

    Full Text Available Electrical synapses (gap junctions play a pivotal role in the synchronization of neuronal ensembles which also makes them likely agonists of pathological brain activity. Although large body of experimental data and theoretical considerations indicate that coupling neurons by electrical synapses promotes synchronous activity (and thus is potentially epileptogenic, some recent evidence questions the hypothesis of gap junctions being among purely epileptogenic factors. In particular, an expression of inter-neuronal gap junctions is often found to be higher after the experimentally induced seizures than before. Here we used a computational modeling approach to address the role of neuronal gap junctions in shaping the stability of a network to perturbations that are often associated with the onset of epileptic seizures. We show that under some circumstances, the addition of gap junctions can increase the dynamical stability of a network and thus suppress the collective electrical activity associated with seizures. This implies that the experimentally observed post-seizure additions of gap junctions could serve to prevent further escalations, suggesting furthermore that they are a consequence of an adaptive response of the neuronal network to the pathological activity. However, if the seizures are strong and persistent, our model predicts the existence of a critical tipping point after which additional gap junctions no longer suppress but strongly facilitate the escalation of epileptic seizures. Our results thus reveal a complex role of electrical coupling in relation to epileptiform events. Which dynamic scenario (seizure suppression or seizure escalation is ultimately adopted by the network depends critically on the strength and duration of seizures, in turn emphasizing the importance of temporal and causal aspects when linking gap junctions with epilepsy.

  13. Chaotic synchronization with gap junction of multi-neurons in external electrical stimulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deng Bin; Wang Jiang; Fei Xiangyang

    2005-01-01

    The synchronization of n(n 3) neurons coupled with gap junction in external electrical stimulation is investigated. In this paper, the coupled model is established on the basis of nonlinear cable model, and then the relation between coupling strength of the gap junction and the synchronization is discussed in detail. The sufficient condition of complete synchronization is attained from rigorous mathematical derivation. The synchronizations of periodic neurons and chaotic neurons are studied respectively

  14. Intercellular signaling via cyclic GMP diffusion through gap junctions restarts meiosis in mouse ovarian follicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shuhaibar, Leia C; Egbert, Jeremy R; Norris, Rachael P; Lampe, Paul D; Nikolaev, Viacheslav O; Thunemann, Martin; Wen, Lai; Feil, Robert; Jaffe, Laurinda A

    2015-04-28

    Meiosis in mammalian oocytes is paused until luteinizing hormone (LH) activates receptors in the mural granulosa cells of the ovarian follicle. Prior work has established the central role of cyclic GMP (cGMP) from the granulosa cells in maintaining meiotic arrest, but it is not clear how binding of LH to receptors that are located up to 10 cell layers away from the oocyte lowers oocyte cGMP and restarts meiosis. Here, by visualizing intercellular trafficking of cGMP in real-time in live follicles from mice expressing a FRET sensor, we show that diffusion of cGMP through gap junctions is responsible not only for maintaining meiotic arrest, but also for rapid transmission of the signal that reinitiates meiosis from the follicle surface to the oocyte. Before LH exposure, the cGMP concentration throughout the follicle is at a uniformly high level of ∼2-4 μM. Then, within 1 min of LH application, cGMP begins to decrease in the peripheral granulosa cells. As a consequence, cGMP from the oocyte diffuses into the sink provided by the large granulosa cell volume, such that by 20 min the cGMP concentration in the follicle is uniformly low, ∼100 nM. The decrease in cGMP in the oocyte relieves the inhibition of the meiotic cell cycle. This direct demonstration that a physiological signal initiated by a stimulus in one region of an intact tissue can travel across many layers of cells via cyclic nucleotide diffusion through gap junctions could provide a general mechanism for diverse cellular processes.

  15. Role of gap junctional coupling in astrocytic networks in the determination of global ischaemia-induced oxidative stress and hippocampal damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez Velazquez, Jose L; Kokarovtseva, Larisa; Sarbaziha, Raheleh; Jeyapalan, Zina; Leshchenko, Yevgen

    2006-01-01

    While there is evidence that gap junctions play important roles in the determination of cell injuries, there is not much known about mechanisms by which gap junctional communication may exert these functions. Using a global model of transient ischaemia in rats, we found that pretreatment with the gap junctional blockers carbenoxolone, 18alpha-glycyrrhetinic acid and endothelin, applied via cannulae implanted into the hippocampus in one hemisphere, resulted in decreased numbers of TUNEL-positive neurons, as compared with the contralateral hippocampus that received saline injection. Post-treatment with carbenoxolone for up to 30 min after the stroke injury still resulted in decreased cell death, but post-treatment at 90 min after the ischaemic insult did not result in differences in cell death. However, quinine, an inhibitor of Cx36-mediated gap junctional coupling, did not result in appreciable neuroprotection. Searching for a possible mechanism for the observed protective effects, possible actions of the gap junctional blockers in the electrical activity of the hippocampus during the ischaemic insult were assessed using intracerebral recordings, with no differences observed between the saline-injected and the contralateral drug-injected hippocampus. However, a significant reduction in lipid peroxides, a measure of free radical formation, in the hippocampus treated with carbenoxolone, revealed that the actions of gap junctional coupling during injuries may be causally related to oxidative stress. These observations suggest that coupling in glial networks may be functionally important in determining neuronal vulnerability to oxidative injuries.

  16. Effect of Mefloquine, a Gap Junction Blocker, on Circadian Period2 Gene Oscillation in the Mouse Suprachiasmatic Nucleus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinmi Koo

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available BackgroundIn mammals, the master circadian pacemaker is localized in an area of the ventral hypothalamus known as the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN. Previous studies have shown that pacemaker neurons in the SCN are highly coupled to one another, and this coupling is crucial for intrinsic self-sustainability of the SCN central clock, which is distinguished from peripheral oscillators. One plausible mechanism underlying the intercellular communication may involve direct electrical connections mediated by gap junctions.MethodsWe examined the effect of mefloquine, a neuronal gap junction blocker, on circadian Period 2 (Per2 gene oscillation in SCN slice cultures prepared from Per2::luciferase (PER2::LUC knock-in mice using a real-time bioluminescence measurement system.ResultsAdministration of mefloquine causes instability in the pulse period and a slight reduction of amplitude in cyclic PER2::LUC expression. Blockade of gap junctions uncouples PER2::LUC-expressing cells, in terms of phase transition, which weakens synchrony among individual cellular rhythms.ConclusionThese findings suggest that neuronal gap junctions play an important role in synchronizing the central pacemaker neurons and contribute to the distinct self-sustainability of the SCN master clock.

  17. Lens intracellular hydrostatic pressure is generated by the circulation of sodium and modulated by gap junction coupling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Junyuan; Sun, Xiurong; Moore, Leon C.; White, Thomas W.; Brink, Peter R.

    2011-01-01

    We recently modeled fluid flow through gap junction channels coupling the pigmented and nonpigmented layers of the ciliary body. The model suggested the channels could transport the secretion of aqueous humor, but flow would be driven by hydrostatic pressure rather than osmosis. The pressure required to drive fluid through a single layer of gap junctions might be just a few mmHg and difficult to measure. In the lens, however, there is a circulation of Na+ that may be coupled to intracellular fluid flow. Based on this hypothesis, the fluid would cross hundreds of layers of gap junctions, and this might require a large hydrostatic gradient. Therefore, we measured hydrostatic pressure as a function of distance from the center of the lens using an intracellular microelectrode-based pressure-sensing system. In wild-type mouse lenses, intracellular pressure varied from ∼330 mmHg at the center to zero at the surface. We have several knockout/knock-in mouse models with differing levels of expression of gap junction channels coupling lens fiber cells. Intracellular hydrostatic pressure in lenses from these mouse models varied inversely with the number of channels. When the lens’ circulation of Na+ was either blocked or reduced, intracellular hydrostatic pressure in central fiber cells was either eliminated or reduced proportionally. These data are consistent with our hypotheses: fluid circulates through the lens; the intracellular leg of fluid circulation is through gap junction channels and is driven by hydrostatic pressure; and the fluid flow is generated by membrane transport of sodium. PMID:21624945

  18. Role of Non-Myocyte Gap Junctions and Connexin Hemichannels in Cardiovascular Health and Disease: Novel Therapeutic Targets?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Robert D; Camelliti, Patrizia

    2018-03-15

    The heart is a complex organ composed of multiple cell types, including cardiomyocytes and different non-myocyte populations, all working closely together to determine the hearts properties and maintain normal cardiac function. Connexins are abundantly expressed proteins that form plasma membrane hemichannels and gap junctions between cells. Gap junctions are intracellular channels that allow for communication between cells, and in the heart they play a crucial role in cardiac conduction by coupling adjacent cardiomyocytes. Connexins are expressed in both cardiomyocytes and non-myocytes, including cardiac fibroblasts, endothelial cells, and macrophages. Non-myocytes are the largest population of cells in the heart, and therefore it is important to consider what roles connexins, hemichannels, and gap junctions play in these cell types. The aim of this review is to provide insight into connexin-based signalling in non-myocytes during health and disease, and highlight how targeting these proteins could lead to the development of novel therapies. We conclude that connexins in non-myocytes contribute to arrhythmias and adverse ventricular remodelling following myocardial infarction, and are associated with the initiation and development of atherosclerosis. Therefore, therapeutic interventions targeting these connexins represent an exciting new research avenue with great potential.

  19. Inter-band phase fluctuations in macroscopic quantum tunneling of multi-gap superconducting Josephson junctions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Asai, Hidehiro, E-mail: hd-asai@aist.go.jp [Electronics and Photonics Research Institute (ESPRIT), National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8568 (Japan); Ota, Yukihiro [CCSE, Japan Atomic Energy Agency, Kashiwa, Chiba 277-8587 (Japan); Kawabata, Shiro [Electronics and Photonics Research Institute (ESPRIT), National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8568 (Japan); Nori, Franco [CEMS, RIKEN, Wako-shi, Saitama 351-0198 (Japan); Physics Department, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1040 (United States)

    2014-09-15

    Highlights: • We study MQT in Josephson junctions composed of multi-gap superconductors. • We derive a formula of the MQT escape rate for multiple phase differences. • We investigate the effect of inter-band phase fluctuation on MQT. • The MQT escape rate is significantly enhanced by the inter-band phase fluctuation. - Abstract: We theoretically investigate macroscopic quantum tunneling (MQT) in a hetero Josephson junction formed by a conventional single-gap superconductor and a multi-gap superconductor. In such Josephson junctions, phase differences for each tunneling channel are defined, and the fluctuation of the relative phase differences appear which is referred to as Josephson–Leggett’s mode. We take into account the effect of the fluctuation in the tunneling process and calculate the MQT escape rate for various junction parameters. We show that the fluctuation of relative phase differences drastically enhances the escape rate.

  20. Inter-band phase fluctuations in macroscopic quantum tunneling of multi-gap superconducting Josephson junctions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Asai, Hidehiro; Ota, Yukihiro; Kawabata, Shiro; Nori, Franco

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • We study MQT in Josephson junctions composed of multi-gap superconductors. • We derive a formula of the MQT escape rate for multiple phase differences. • We investigate the effect of inter-band phase fluctuation on MQT. • The MQT escape rate is significantly enhanced by the inter-band phase fluctuation. - Abstract: We theoretically investigate macroscopic quantum tunneling (MQT) in a hetero Josephson junction formed by a conventional single-gap superconductor and a multi-gap superconductor. In such Josephson junctions, phase differences for each tunneling channel are defined, and the fluctuation of the relative phase differences appear which is referred to as Josephson–Leggett’s mode. We take into account the effect of the fluctuation in the tunneling process and calculate the MQT escape rate for various junction parameters. We show that the fluctuation of relative phase differences drastically enhances the escape rate

  1. A PC microsimulation of a gap acceptance model for turning left at a T-junction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schaap, Nina; Dijck, T.; van Arem, Bart; Morsink, Peter L.J.

    2009-01-01

    Vehicles are controlled by sub-behavioral models in a microsimulation model, this includes the gap acceptance model where the decision about how to cross a junction is made. The critical gap in these models must serve as a threshold value to accept or reject the space between two successive vehicles

  2. Microwave dependence of subharmonic gap structure in superconducting junctions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, O. Hoffman; Kofoed, Bent; Pedersen, Niels Falsig

    1974-01-01

    are integers: m=1,2,3,… and n=0,1,2,…. The power dependence of the satellite structure and the microwave-assisted tunneling structure is consistent for all junctions tested with the expression Jn2(m e Vrf / h ν), where Jn(x) is the ordinary Bessel function of order n, Vrf is the amplitude of the induced...

  3. Garlic (Allium sativum) feeding impairs Sertoli cell junctional proteins in male Wistar rat testis: microscopy study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammami, I; Nahdi, A; Atig, F; El May, A; El May, M V

    2016-12-01

    Sertoli cell junctions, such as adhesion junction (AJ), gap junction (GJ) and tight junction (TJ), are important for maintaining spermatogenesis. In previous studies, we showed the inhibitory effect of crude garlic (Allium sativum, As) on spermatogenesis and steroidogenesis. The aim of this work was to complete our investigation on the impact of this plant, especially on Sertoli cell junctional proteins (SCJPs). During 1 month, 24 male rats were divided into groups: group control (0% of As) and treated groups fed 5%, 10% and 15% of As. Light and electron microscopy observations were performed to localise junctional proteins: connexin-43, Zona Occluding-1 and N-cadherin (immunohistochemistry) and to describe junctions. We showed that the specific cells involved in the localisation of the SCJP were similar in both control and treated groups, but with different immunoreactivity intensity between them. The electron microscopy observation focused on TJs between Sertoli cells, constituting the blood-testis barrier, showed ultrastructural changes such as fragmentation of TJs between adjacent Sertoli cell membranes and dilatation of rough endoplasmic reticulum saccules giving an aspect of scale to these junctions. We concluded that crude garlic consumption during 1 month induces perturbations on Sertoli cell junctions. These alterations can explain apoptosis in testicular germ cells previously showed. © 2016 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  4. Progressive age-dependence and frequency difference in the effect of gap junctions on active cochlear amplification and hearing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zong, Liang; Chen, Jin; Zhu, Yan; Zhao, Hong-Bo

    2017-07-22

    Mutations of Connexin 26 (Cx26, GJB2), which is a predominant gap junction isoform in the cochlea, can induce high incidence of nonsyndromic hearing loss. We previously found that targeted-deletion of Cx26 in supporting Deiters cells and outer pillar cells in the cochlea can influence outer hair cell (OHC) electromotility and reduce active cochlear amplification leading to hearing loss, even though there are no gap junction connexin expressions in the auditory sensory hair cells. Here, we further report that hearing loss and the reduction of active amplification in the Cx26 targeted-deletion mice are progressive and different at high and low frequency regions, first occurring in the high frequency region and then progressively extending to the middle and low frequency regions with mouse age increased. The speed of hearing loss extending was fast in the basal high frequency region and slow in the apical low frequency region, showing a logarithmic function with mouse age. Before postnatal day 25, there were no significant hearing loss and the reduction of active cochlear amplification in the low frequency region. Hearing loss and the reduction of active cochlear amplification also had frequency difference, severe and large in the high frequency regions. These new data indicate that the effect of gap junction on active cochlear amplification is progressive, but, consistent with our previous report, exists in both high and low frequency regions in adulthood. These new data also suggest that cochlear gap junctions may have an important role in age-related hearing loss. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Search for a proximity effect induced gap in gold/high Tc junctions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dessau, D.S.; Wells, B.O.; Shen, Z.; Spicer, W.E.; Arko, A.J.; List, R.S.; Olson, C.G.; Eom, C.B.; Mitzi, D.B.; Kapitulnik, A.; Geballe, T.H.

    1991-01-01

    We have used high-resolution photoemission spectroscopy to search for a proximity effect induced superconducting gap in gold overlayers on c-axis single crystals of Bi 2 Sr 2 CaCu 2 O 8 and a-axis thin films of YBa 2 Cu 3 O 7 . These two junction types give us a representative sampling of very well characterized near-ideal interfaces (gold/c-axis Bi 2 Sr 2 CaCu 2 O 8 ) and junctions in which the geometry more strongly favors the existence of the proximity effect but the interfacial quality may not be as ideal (gold/a-axis YBa 2 Cu 3 O 7 ). In neither of these junction types did we observe any evidence for a proximity effect induced gap, and we place an upper limit of approximately 5 meV on its existence in the junctions that we have studied

  6. Gap junction connexins in female reproductive organs: implications for women's reproductive health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winterhager, Elke; Kidder, Gerald M

    2015-01-01

    Connexins comprise a family of ~20 proteins that form intercellular membrane channels (gap junction channels) providing a direct route for metabolites and signalling molecules to pass between cells. This review provides a critical analysis of the evidence for essential roles of individual connexins in female reproductive function, highlighting implications for women's reproductive health. No systematic review has been carried out. Published literature from the past 35 years was surveyed for research related to connexin involvement in development and function of the female reproductive system. Because of the demonstrated utility of genetic manipulation for elucidating connexin functions in various organs, much of the cited information comes from research with genetically modified mice. In some cases, a distinction is drawn between connexin functions clearly related to the formation of gap junction channels and those possibly linked to non-channel roles. Based on work with mice, several connexins are known to be required for female reproductive functions. Loss of connexin43 (CX43) causes an oocyte deficiency, and follicles lacking or expressing less CX43 in granulosa cells exhibit reduced growth, impairing fertility. CX43 is also expressed in human cumulus cells and, in the context of IVF, has been correlated with pregnancy outcome, suggesting that this connexin may be a determinant of oocyte and embryo quality in women. Loss of CX37, which exclusively connects oocytes with granulosa cells in the mouse, caused oocytes to cease growing without acquiring meiotic competence. Blocking of CX26 channels in the uterine epithelium disrupted implantation whereas loss or reduction of CX43 expression in the uterine stroma impaired decidualization and vascularization in mouse and human. Several connexins are important in placentation and, in the human, CX43 is a key regulator of the fusogenic pathway from the cytotrophoblast to the syncytiotrophoblast, ensuring placental growth

  7. Integrating evolutionary game theory into an agent-based model of ductal carcinoma in situ: Role of gap junctions in cancer progression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malekian, Negin; Habibi, Jafar; Zangooei, Mohammad Hossein; Aghakhani, Hojjat

    2016-11-01

    There are many cells with various phenotypic behaviors in cancer interacting with each other. For example, an apoptotic cell may induce apoptosis in adjacent cells. A living cell can also protect cells from undergoing apoptosis and necrosis. These survival and death signals are propagated through interaction pathways between adjacent cells called gap junctions. The function of these signals depends on the cellular context of the cell receiving them. For instance, a receiver cell experiencing a low level of oxygen may interpret a received survival signal as an apoptosis signal. In this study, we examine the effect of these signals on tumor growth. We make an evolutionary game theory component in order to model the signal propagation through gap junctions. The game payoffs are defined as a function of cellular context. Then, the game theory component is integrated into an agent-based model of tumor growth. After that, the integrated model is applied to ductal carcinoma in situ, a type of early stage breast cancer. Different scenarios are explored to observe the impact of the gap junction communication and parameters of the game theory component on cancer progression. We compare these scenarios by using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test. The Wilcoxon signed-rank test succeeds in proving a significant difference between the tumor growth of the model before and after considering the gap junction communication. The Wilcoxon signed-rank test also proves that the tumor growth significantly depends on the oxygen threshold of turning survival signals into apoptosis. In this study, the gap junction communication is modeled by using evolutionary game theory to illustrate its role at early stage cancers such as ductal carcinoma in situ. This work indicates that the gap junction communication and the oxygen threshold of turning survival signals into apoptosis can notably affect cancer progression. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Dielectric properties of biological tissues in which cells are connected by communicating junctions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Asami, Koji

    2007-01-01

    The frequency dependence of the complex permittivity of biological tissues has been simulated using a simple model that is a cubic array of spherical cells in a parallel plate capacitor. The cells are connected by two types of communicating junctions: one is a membrane-lined channel for plasmodesmata in plant tissues, and the other is a conducting patch of adjoining plasma membranes for gap junctions in animal tissues. Both junctions provided similar effects on the dielectric properties of the tissue model. The model without junction showed a dielectric relaxation (called β-dispersion) that was expected from an interfacial polarization theory for a concentrated suspension of spherical cells. The dielectric relaxation was the same as that of the model in which neighbouring cells were connected by junctions perpendicular to the applied electric field. When neighbouring cells were connected by junctions parallel to the applied electric field or in all directions, a dielectric relaxation appeared at a lower frequency side in addition to the β-dispersion, corresponding to the so called α-dispersion. When junctions were randomly introduced at varied probabilities P j , the low-frequency (LF) relaxation curve became broader, especially at P j of 0.2-0.5, and its intensity was proportional to P j up to 0.7. The intensity and the characteristic frequency of the LF relaxation both decreased with decreasing junction conductance. The simulations indicate that communicating junctions are important for understanding the LF dielectric relaxation in tissues

  9. Dielectric properties of biological tissues in which cells are connected by communicating junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asami, Koji

    2007-06-01

    The frequency dependence of the complex permittivity of biological tissues has been simulated using a simple model that is a cubic array of spherical cells in a parallel plate capacitor. The cells are connected by two types of communicating junctions: one is a membrane-lined channel for plasmodesmata in plant tissues, and the other is a conducting patch of adjoining plasma membranes for gap junctions in animal tissues. Both junctions provided similar effects on the dielectric properties of the tissue model. The model without junction showed a dielectric relaxation (called β-dispersion) that was expected from an interfacial polarization theory for a concentrated suspension of spherical cells. The dielectric relaxation was the same as that of the model in which neighbouring cells were connected by junctions perpendicular to the applied electric field. When neighbouring cells were connected by junctions parallel to the applied electric field or in all directions, a dielectric relaxation appeared at a lower frequency side in addition to the β-dispersion, corresponding to the so called α-dispersion. When junctions were randomly introduced at varied probabilities Pj, the low-frequency (LF) relaxation curve became broader, especially at Pj of 0.2-0.5, and its intensity was proportional to Pj up to 0.7. The intensity and the characteristic frequency of the LF relaxation both decreased with decreasing junction conductance. The simulations indicate that communicating junctions are important for understanding the LF dielectric relaxation in tissues.

  10. Feature of the energy gap in YBa2 Cu3 O7 from break junction measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ekino, T.; Minami, T.; Fujii, H.

    1995-01-01

    Superconducting energy gap in YBa 2 Cu 3 O 7 have been investigated using break junctions. The tunneling conductance, dI/dV, at T=4.2 K shows no leakage around zero bias, while the gap edge peaks are broadened compared to the simple BCS density of states. These features suggest the spatial distribution of the energy gap or the anisotropic s-wave pairing. The observed largest gap value, determined by the peak-to-peak (p-p) separation in dI/dV, is 140 meV, which corresponds to the 4 δ p-p of an SIS junction. The observed tunneling density of states is fairly well expressed by the probability distribution of the energy gap using the BCS density of states

  11. Disruption of gap junctional intercellular communication by antibiotic gentamicin is associated with aberrant localization of occludin, N-cadherin, connexin 43, and vimentin in SerW3 Sertoli cells in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekheet, Souad H M; Stahlmann, Ralf

    2009-09-01

    Spermatogenesis is a very complex process by which male germ cells differentiate into mature spermatozoa. The sophisticated communication network that controls spermatogenesis can be derailed so that dysfunction of one cell type propagates to all types as a cascade. This accounts for the particular vulnerability of the testis to environmental factors such as drugs and xenobiotics. Sertoli cells play an important role in protecting developing germ cells by forming a physiological barrier, limiting exposure to potentially toxic substrates, or conversely, facilitating uptake of xenobiotics within the testis. In this study, cells from the rat Sertoli line (SerW3) were incubated for 3, 6 and 9 subsequent days in serum free DMEM (SFDM) composed of DMEM supplemented with three different concentrations of antibiotic gentamicin (10, 30, and 100 μg). The effect of the three different concentrations of this antibiotic was determined on Sertoli cell-cell interaction through impaired expression of their constitutive tight junction proteins as early targets for different toxicants in vitro by immunochemistry analysis. The Sertoli SerW3 cell line illustrated the cytotoxicity of GS, as the intercellular junction proteins such as occludin, N-cadherin, connexin 43, and vimentin were delocalized from the membrane to the cytoplasmic compartment during exposure to the antibiotic. This study underlines the potential deleterious effects of the routine use of antibiotics during continuous cell culture.

  12. Astrocytic gap junctional networks suppress cellular damage in an in vitro model of ischemia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shinotsuka, Takanori; Yasui, Masato; Nuriya, Mutsuo, E-mail: mnuriya@z2.keio.jp

    2014-02-07

    Highlights: • Astrocytes exhibit characteristic changes in [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} under OGD. • Astrocytic [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase is synchronized with a neuronal anoxic depolarization. • Gap junctional couplings protect neurons as well as astrocytes during OGD. - Abstract: Astrocytes play pivotal roles in both the physiology and the pathophysiology of the brain. They communicate with each other via extracellular messengers as well as through gap junctions, which may exacerbate or protect against pathological processes in the brain. However, their roles during the acute phase of ischemia and the underlying cellular mechanisms remain largely unknown. To address this issue, we imaged changes in the intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}) in astrocytes in mouse cortical slices under oxygen/glucose deprivation (OGD) condition using two-photon microscopy. Under OGD, astrocytes showed [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} oscillations followed by larger and sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increases. While the pharmacological blockades of astrocytic receptors for glutamate and ATP had no effect, the inhibitions of gap junctional intercellular coupling between astrocytes significantly advanced the onset of the sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase after OGD exposure. Interestingly, the simultaneous recording of the neuronal membrane potential revealed that the onset of the sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase in astrocytes was synchronized with the appearance of neuronal anoxic depolarization. Furthermore, the blockade of gap junctional coupling resulted in a concurrent faster appearance of neuronal depolarizations, which remain synchronized with the sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase in astrocytes. These results indicate that astrocytes delay the appearance of the pathological responses of astrocytes and neurons through their gap junction-mediated intercellular network under OGD. Thus, astrocytic gap junctional networks provide protection against tissue damage

  13. Astrocytic gap junctional networks suppress cellular damage in an in vitro model of ischemia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shinotsuka, Takanori; Yasui, Masato; Nuriya, Mutsuo

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Astrocytes exhibit characteristic changes in [Ca 2+ ] i under OGD. • Astrocytic [Ca 2+ ] i increase is synchronized with a neuronal anoxic depolarization. • Gap junctional couplings protect neurons as well as astrocytes during OGD. - Abstract: Astrocytes play pivotal roles in both the physiology and the pathophysiology of the brain. They communicate with each other via extracellular messengers as well as through gap junctions, which may exacerbate or protect against pathological processes in the brain. However, their roles during the acute phase of ischemia and the underlying cellular mechanisms remain largely unknown. To address this issue, we imaged changes in the intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca 2+ ] i ) in astrocytes in mouse cortical slices under oxygen/glucose deprivation (OGD) condition using two-photon microscopy. Under OGD, astrocytes showed [Ca 2+ ] i oscillations followed by larger and sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increases. While the pharmacological blockades of astrocytic receptors for glutamate and ATP had no effect, the inhibitions of gap junctional intercellular coupling between astrocytes significantly advanced the onset of the sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increase after OGD exposure. Interestingly, the simultaneous recording of the neuronal membrane potential revealed that the onset of the sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increase in astrocytes was synchronized with the appearance of neuronal anoxic depolarization. Furthermore, the blockade of gap junctional coupling resulted in a concurrent faster appearance of neuronal depolarizations, which remain synchronized with the sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increase in astrocytes. These results indicate that astrocytes delay the appearance of the pathological responses of astrocytes and neurons through their gap junction-mediated intercellular network under OGD. Thus, astrocytic gap junctional networks provide protection against tissue damage during the acute phase of ischemia

  14. Gap junctions composed of connexins 41.8 and 39.4 are essential for colour pattern formation in zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irion, Uwe; Frohnhöfer, Hans Georg; Krauss, Jana; Çolak Champollion, Tuǧba; Maischein, Hans-Martin; Geiger-Rudolph, Silke; Weiler, Christian; Nüsslein-Volhard, Christiane

    2014-01-01

    Interactions between all three pigment cell types are required to form the stripe pattern of adult zebrafish (Danio rerio), but their molecular nature is poorly understood. Mutations in leopard (leo), encoding Connexin 41.8 (Cx41.8), a gap junction subunit, cause a phenotypic series of spotted patterns. A new dominant allele, leotK3, leads to a complete loss of the pattern, suggesting a dominant negative impact on another component of gap junctions. In a genetic screen, we identified this component as Cx39.4 (luchs). Loss-of-function alleles demonstrate that luchs is required for stripe formation in zebrafish; however, the fins are almost not affected. Double mutants and chimeras, which show that leo and luchs are only required in xanthophores and melanophores, but not in iridophores, suggest that both connexins form heteromeric gap junctions. The phenotypes indicate that these promote homotypic interactions between melanophores and xanthophores, respectively, and those cells instruct the patterning of the iridophores. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.05125.001 PMID:25535837

  15. Connexin domains relevant to the chemical gating of gap junction channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Peracchia

    1997-05-01

    Full Text Available Most cells exchange ions and small metabolites via gap junction channels. These channels are made of two hemichannels (connexons, each formed by the radial arrangement of six connexin (Cx proteins. Connexins span the bilayer four times (M1-M4 and have both amino- and carboxy-termini (NT, CT at the cytoplasmic side of the membrane, forming two extracellular loops (E1, E2 and one inner (IL loop. The channels are regulated by gates that close with cytosolic acidification (e.g., CO2 treatment or increased calcium concentration, possibly via calmodulin activation. Although gap junction regulation is still unclear, connexin domains involved in gating are being defined. We have recently focused on the CO2 gating sensitivity of Cx32, Cx38 and various mutants and chimeras expressed in Xenopus oocytes and studied by double voltage clamp. Cx32 is weakly sensitive to CO2, whereas Cx38 is highly sensitive. A Cx32 chimera containing the second half of the inner loop (IL2 of Cx38 was as sensitive to CO2 as Cx38, indicating that this domain plays an important role. Deletion of CT by 84% did not affect CO2 sensitivity, but replacement of 5 arginines (R with sparagines (N at the beginning of CT (C1 greatly enhanced the CO2 sensitivity of Cx32. This suggests that whereas most of CT is irrelevant, positive charges of C1 maintain the CO2 sensitivity of Cx32 low. As a hypothesis we have proposed a model that involves charge interaction between negative residues of the beginning of IL1 and positive residues of either C1 or IL2. Open and closed channels would result from IL1-C1 and IL1-IL2 interactions, respectively

  16. Targeting neuronal gap junctions in mouse retina offers neuroprotection in glaucoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sandeep; Ramakrishnan, Hariharasubramanian; Roy, Kaushambi; Viswanathan, Suresh; Bloomfield, Stewart A.

    2017-01-01

    The progressive death of retinal ganglion cells and resulting visual deficits are hallmarks of glaucoma, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. In many neurodegenerative diseases, cell death induced by primary insult is followed by a wave of secondary loss. Gap junctions (GJs), intercellular channels composed of subunit connexins, can play a major role in secondary cell death by forming conduits through which toxic molecules from dying cells pass to and injure coupled neighbors. Here we have shown that pharmacological blockade of GJs or genetic ablation of connexin 36 (Cx36) subunits, which are highly expressed by retinal neurons, markedly reduced loss of neurons and optic nerve axons in a mouse model of glaucoma. Further, functional parameters that are negatively affected in glaucoma, including the electroretinogram, visual evoked potential, visual spatial acuity, and contrast sensitivity, were maintained at control levels when Cx36 was ablated. Neuronal GJs may thus represent potential therapeutic targets to prevent the progressive neurodegeneration and visual impairment associated with glaucoma. PMID:28604388

  17. Chemopreventive agents attenuate rapid inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication induced by environmental toxicants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Babica, Pavel; Čtveráčková, Lucie; Lenčešová, Zuzana; Trosko, J. E.; Upham, B. L.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 68, č. 5 (2016), s. 827-837 ISSN 0163-5581 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LH12034 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : gap junctional intercellular communication * chemopreventive agents * environmental toxicants Subject RIV: FR - Pharmacology ; Medidal Chemistry Impact factor: 2.447, year: 2016

  18. The role of Rap1 in cell-cell junction formation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kooistra, M.R.H.

    2008-01-01

    Both epithelial and endothelial cells form cell-cell junctions at the cell-cell contacts to maintain tissue integrity. Proper regulation of cell-cell junctions is required for the organisation of the tissue and to prevent leakage of blood vessels. In endothelial cells, the cell-cell junctions are

  19. Modulation of Connexin-36 Gap Junction Channels by Intracellular pH and Magnesium Ions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rimkute, Lina; Kraujalis, Tadas; Snipas, Mindaugas; Palacios-Prado, Nicolas; Jotautis, Vaidas; Skeberdis, Vytenis A; Bukauskas, Feliksas F

    2018-01-01

    Connexin-36 (Cx36) protein forms gap junction (GJ) channels in pancreatic beta cells and is also the main Cx isoform forming electrical synapses in the adult mammalian brain. Cx36 GJs can be regulated by intracellular pH (pH i ) and cytosolic magnesium ion concentration ([Mg 2+ ] i ), which can vary significantly under various physiological and pathological conditions. However, the combined effect and relationship of these two factors over Cx36-dependent coupling have not been previously studied in detail. Our experimental results in HeLa cells expressing Cx36 show that changes in both pH i and [Mg 2+ ] i affect junctional conductance (g j ) in an interdependent manner; in other words, intracellular acidification cause increase or decay in g j depending on whether [Mg 2+ ] i is high or low, respectively, and intracellular alkalization cause reduction in g j independently of [Mg 2+ ] i . Our experimental and modelling data support the hypothesis that Cx36 GJ channels contain two separate gating mechanisms, and both are differentially sensitive to changes in pH i and [Mg 2+ ] i . Using recombinant Cx36 we found that two glutamate residues in the N-terminus could be partly responsible for the observed interrelated effect of pH i and [Mg 2+ ] i . Mutation of glutamate at position 8 attenuated the stimulatory effect of intracellular acidification at high [Mg 2+ ] i , while mutation at position 12 and double mutation at both positions reversed stimulatory effect to inhibition. Moreover, Cx36 * E8Q lost the initial increase of g j at low [Mg 2+ ] i and double mutation lost the sensitivity to high [Mg 2+ ] i . These results suggest that E8 and E12 are involved in regulation of Cx36 GJ channels by Mg 2+ and H + ions.

  20. Ginsenoside Rg1 alleviates corticosterone-induced dysfunction of gap junctions in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Cong-Yuan; Chu, Shi-Feng; Zhang, Shuai; Gao, Yan; Ren, Qian; Lou, Yu-Xia; Luo, Piao; Tian, Man-Tong; Wang, Zhi-Qi; Du, Guo-Hua; Tomioka, Yoshihisa; Yamakuni, Tohru; Zhang, Yi; Wang, Zhen-Zhen; Chen, Nai-Hong

    2017-08-17

    Ginsenoside Rg1 (Rg1), one of the major bioactive ingredients of Panax ginseng C. A. Mey, has neuroprotective effects in animal models of depression, but the mechanism underlying these effects is still largely unknown AIM OF THE STUDY: Gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) dysfunction is a potentially novel pathogenic mechanism for depression. Thus, we investigated that whether antidepressant-like effects of Rg1 were related to GJIC. Primary rat prefrontal cortical and hippocampal astrocytes cultures were treated with 50μM CORT for 24h to induce gap junction damage. Rg1 (0.1, 1, or 10μM) or fluoxetine (1μM) was added 1h prior to CORT treatment. A scrape loading and dye transfer assay was performed to identify the functional capacity of gap junctions. Western blot was used to detect the expression and phosphorylation of connexin43 (Cx43), the major component of gap junctions. Treatment of primary astrocytes with CORT for 24h inhibited GJIC, decreased total Cx43 expression, and increased the phosphorylation of Cx43 at serine368 in a dose-dependent manner. Pre-treatment with 1μM and 10μM Rg1 significantly improved GJIC in CORT-treated astrocytes from the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, respectively, and this was accompanied by upregulation of Cx43 expression and downregulation of Cx43 phosphorylation. These findings provide the first evidence indicating that Rg1 can alleviate CORT-induced gap junction dysfunction, which may have clinical significance in the treatment of depression. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Astrocytic Gap Junctional Communication is Reduced in Amyloid-β-Treated Cultured Astrocytes, but not in Alzheimer's Disease Transgenic Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nancy F Cruz

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer's disease is characterized by accumulation of amyloid deposits in brain, progressive cognitive deficits and reduced glucose utilization. Many consequences of the disease are attributed to neuronal dysfunction, but roles of astrocytes in its pathogenesis are not well understood. Astrocytes are extensively coupled via gap junctions, and abnormal trafficking of metabolites and signalling molecules within astrocytic syncytia could alter functional interactions among cells comprising the neurovascular unit. To evaluate the influence of amyloid-β on astrocyte gap junctional communication, cultured astrocytes were treated with monomerized amyloid-β1-40 (1 μmol/l for intervals ranging from 2 h to 5 days, and the areas labelled by test compounds were determined by impaling a single astrocyte with a micropipette and diffusion of material into coupled cells. Amyloid-β-treated astrocytes had rapid, sustained 50-70% reductions in the area labelled by Lucifer Yellow, anionic Alexa Fluor® dyes and energy-related compounds, 6-NBDG (a fluorescent glucose analogue, NADH and NADPH. Amyloid-β treatment also caused a transient increase in oxidative stress. In striking contrast with these results, spreading of Lucifer Yellow within astrocytic networks in brain slices from three regions of 8.5-14-month-old control and transgenic Alzheimer's model mice was variable, labelling 10-2000 cells; there were no statistically significant differences in the number of dye-labelled cells among the groups or with age. Thus amyloid-induced dysfunction of gap junctional communication in cultured astrocytes does not reflect the maintenance of dye transfer through astrocytic syncytial networks in transgenic mice; the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease is not appropriately represented by the cell culture system.

  2. Astrocytic gap junctional communication is reduced in amyloid-β-treated cultured astrocytes, but not in Alzheimer's disease transgenic mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Nancy F; Ball, Kelly K; Dienel, Gerald A

    2010-08-17

    Alzheimer's disease is characterized by accumulation of amyloid deposits in brain, progressive cognitive deficits and reduced glucose utilization. Many consequences of the disease are attributed to neuronal dysfunction, but roles of astrocytes in its pathogenesis are not well understood. Astrocytes are extensively coupled via gap junctions, and abnormal trafficking of metabolites and signalling molecules within astrocytic syncytia could alter functional interactions among cells comprising the neurovascular unit. To evaluate the influence of amyloid-beta on astrocyte gap junctional communication, cultured astrocytes were treated with monomerized amyloid-β(1-40) (1 μmol/l) for intervals ranging from 2 h to 5 days, and the areas labelled by test compounds were determined by impaling a single astrocyte with a micropipette and diffusion of material into coupled cells. Amyloid-β-treated astrocytes had rapid, sustained 50-70% reductions in the area labelled by Lucifer Yellow, anionic Alexa Fluor® dyes and energy-related compounds, 6-NBDG (a fluorescent glucose analogue), NADH and NADPH. Amyloid-β treatment also caused a transient increase in oxidative stress. In striking contrast with these results, spreading of Lucifer Yellow within astrocytic networks in brain slices from three regions of 8.5-14-month-old control and transgenic Alzheimer's model mice was variable, labelling 10-2000 cells; there were no statistically significant differences in the number of dye-labelled cells among the groups or with age. Thus amyloid-induced dysfunction of gap junctional communication in cultured astrocytes does not reflect the maintenance of dye transfer through astrocytic syncytial networks in transgenic mice; the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease is not appropriately represented by the cell culture system.

  3. Critical role of gap junction communication, calcium and nitric oxide signaling in bystander responses to focal photodynamic injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calì, Bianca; Ceolin, Stefano; Ceriani, Federico; Bortolozzi, Mario; Agnellini, Andrielly H R; Zorzi, Veronica; Predonzani, Andrea; Bronte, Vincenzo; Molon, Barbara; Mammano, Fabio

    2015-04-30

    Ionizing and nonionizing radiation affect not only directly targeted cells but also surrounding "bystander" cells. The underlying mechanisms and therapeutic role of bystander responses remain incompletely defined. Here we show that photosentizer activation in a single cell triggers apoptosis in bystander cancer cells, which are electrically coupled by gap junction channels and support the propagation of a Ca2+ wave initiated in the irradiated cell. The latter also acts as source of nitric oxide (NO) that diffuses to bystander cells, in which NO levels are further increased by a mechanism compatible with Ca(2+)-dependent enzymatic production. We detected similar signals in tumors grown in dorsal skinfold chambers applied to live mice. Pharmacological blockade of connexin channels significantly reduced the extent of apoptosis in bystander cells, consistent with a critical role played by intercellular communication, Ca2+ and NO in the bystander effects triggered by photodynamic therapy.

  4. Lack of connexin43-mediated Bergmann glial gap junctional coupling does not affect cerebellar long-term depression, motor coordination, or eyeblink conditioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mika Tanaka

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Bergmann glial cells are specialized astrocytes in the cerebellum. In the mature cerebellar molecular layer, Bergmann glial processes are closely associated with Purkinje cells, enclosing Purkinje cell dendritic synapses with a glial sheath. There is intensive gap junctional coupling between Bergmann glial processes, but their significance in cerebellar functions is not known. Connexin43 (Cx43, a major component of astrocytic gap junction channels, is abundantly expressed in Bergmann glial cells. To examine the role of Cx43-mediated gap junctions between Bergmann glial cells in cerebellar functions, we generated Cx43 conditional knockout mice with the S100b-Cre transgenic line (Cx43fl/fl:S100b-Cre, which exhibited a significant loss of Cx43 in the Bergmann glial cells and astrocytes in the cerebellum with a postnatal onset. The Cx43fl/fl:S100b-Cre mice had normal cerebellar architecture. Although gap junctional coupling between the Bergmann glial cells measured by spreading of microinjected Lucifer yellow was virtually abolished in Cx43fl/fl:S100b-Cre mice, electrophysiologic analysis revealed that cerebellar long-term depression could be induced and maintained normally in thier cerebellar slices. In addition, at the behavioral level, Cx43fl/fl:S100b-Cre mice had normal motor coordination in the rotarod task and normal conditioned eyelid response. Our findings suggest that Cx43-mediated gap junctional coupling between Bergmann glial cells is not necessary for the neuron-glia interactions required for cerebellum-dependent motor coordination and motor learning.

  5. Oligomeric structure and functional characterization of Caenorhabditis elegans Innexin-6 gap junction protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oshima, Atsunori; Matsuzawa, Tomohiro; Nishikawa, Kouki; Fujiyoshi, Yoshinori

    2013-04-12

    Innexin is the molecular component of invertebrate gap junctions. Here we successfully expressed and purified Caenorhabditis elegans innexin-6 (INX-6) gap junction channels and characterized the molecular dimensions and channel permeability using electron microscopy (EM) and microinjection of fluorescent dye tracers, respectively. Negative staining and thin-section EM of isolated INX-6 gap junction membranes revealed a loosely packed hexagonal lattice and a greater cross-sectional width than that of connexin26 and connexin43 (Cx43)-GFP. In gel filtration analysis, the elution profile of purified INX-6 channels in dodecyl maltoside solution exhibited a peak at ∼400 kDa that was shifted to ∼800 kDa in octyl glucose neopentyl glycol. We also obtained the class averages of purified INX-6 channels from these peak fractions by single particle analysis. The class average from the ∼800-kDa fraction showed features of the junction form with a longitudinal height of 220 Å, a channel diameter of 110 Å in the absence of detergent micelles, and an extracellular gap space of 60 Å, whereas the class averages from the ∼400-kDa fraction showed diameters of up to 140 Å in the presence of detergent micelles. These findings indicate that the purified INX-6 channels are predominantly hemichannels in dodecyl maltoside and docked junction channels in octyl glucose neopentyl glycol. Dye transfer experiments revealed that the INX-6-GFP-His channels are permeable to 3- and 10-kDa tracers, whereas no significant amounts of these tracers passed through the Cx43-GFP channels. Based on these findings, INX-6 channels have a larger overall structure and greater permeability than connexin channels.

  6. Oligomeric Structure and Functional Characterization of Caenorhabditis elegans Innexin-6 Gap Junction Protein*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oshima, Atsunori; Matsuzawa, Tomohiro; Nishikawa, Kouki; Fujiyoshi, Yoshinori

    2013-01-01

    Innexin is the molecular component of invertebrate gap junctions. Here we successfully expressed and purified Caenorhabditis elegans innexin-6 (INX-6) gap junction channels and characterized the molecular dimensions and channel permeability using electron microscopy (EM) and microinjection of fluorescent dye tracers, respectively. Negative staining and thin-section EM of isolated INX-6 gap junction membranes revealed a loosely packed hexagonal lattice and a greater cross-sectional width than that of connexin26 and connexin43 (Cx43)-GFP. In gel filtration analysis, the elution profile of purified INX-6 channels in dodecyl maltoside solution exhibited a peak at ∼400 kDa that was shifted to ∼800 kDa in octyl glucose neopentyl glycol. We also obtained the class averages of purified INX-6 channels from these peak fractions by single particle analysis. The class average from the ∼800-kDa fraction showed features of the junction form with a longitudinal height of 220 Å, a channel diameter of 110 Å in the absence of detergent micelles, and an extracellular gap space of 60 Å, whereas the class averages from the ∼400-kDa fraction showed diameters of up to 140 Å in the presence of detergent micelles. These findings indicate that the purified INX-6 channels are predominantly hemichannels in dodecyl maltoside and docked junction channels in octyl glucose neopentyl glycol. Dye transfer experiments revealed that the INX-6-GFP-His channels are permeable to 3- and 10-kDa tracers, whereas no significant amounts of these tracers passed through the Cx43-GFP channels. Based on these findings, INX-6 channels have a larger overall structure and greater permeability than connexin channels. PMID:23460640

  7. Interactive effects of inflammatory cytokine and abundant low-molecular-weight PAHs on inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication, disruption of cell proliferation control, and the AhR-dependent transcription

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kabátková, Markéta; Svobodová, Jana; Pěnčíková, K.; Mohatad, D.S.; Šmerdová, Lenka; Kozubík, Alois; Machala, M.; Vondráček, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 232, č. 1 (2015), s. 113-121 ISSN 0378-4274 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP503/11/1227; GA ČR(CZ) GA13-07711S Institutional support: RVO:68081707 Keywords : PAHs * Inflammation * Cell proliferation Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 3.522, year: 2015

  8. Impact of obesity on 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene-induced altered ovarian connexin gap junction proteins in female mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ganesan, Shanthi; Nteeba, Jackson; Keating, Aileen F.

    2015-01-01

    The ovarian gap junction proteins alpha 4 (GJA4 or connexin 37; CX37), alpha 1 (GJA1 or connexin 43; CX43) and gamma 1 (GJC1 or connexin 45; CX45) are involved in cell communication and folliculogenesis. 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) alters Cx37 and Cx43 expression in cultured neonatal rat ovaries. Additionally, obesity has an additive effect on DMBA-induced ovarian cell death and follicle depletion, thus, we investigated in vivo impacts of obesity and DMBA on CX protein levels. Ovaries were collected from lean and obese mice aged 6, 12, 18, or 24 wks. A subset of 18 wk old mice (lean and obese) were dosed with sesame oil or DMBA (1 mg/kg; ip) for 14 days and ovaries collected 3 days thereafter. Cx43 and Cx45 mRNA and protein levels decreased (P < 0.05) after 18 wks while Cx37 mRNA and protein levels decreased (P < 0.05) after 24 wks in obese ovaries. Cx37 mRNA and antral follicle protein staining intensity were reduced (P < 0.05) by obesity while total CX37 protein was reduced (P < 0.05) in DMBA exposed obese ovaries. Cx43 mRNA and total protein levels were decreased (P < 0.05) by DMBA in both lean and obese ovaries while basal protein staining intensity was reduced (P < 0.05) in obese controls. Cx45 mRNA, total protein and protein staining intensity level were decreased (P < 0.05) by obesity. These data support that obesity temporally alters gap junction protein expression and that DMBA-induced ovotoxicity may involve reduced gap junction protein function. - Highlights: • Ovarian gap junction proteins are affected by ovarian aging and obesity. • DMBA exposure negatively impacts gap junction proteins. • Altered gap junction proteins may contribute to infertility

  9. Impact of obesity on 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene-induced altered ovarian connexin gap junction proteins in female mice

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ganesan, Shanthi, E-mail: shanthig@iastate.edu; Nteeba, Jackson, E-mail: nteeba@iastate.edu; Keating, Aileen F., E-mail: akeating@iastate.edu

    2015-01-01

    The ovarian gap junction proteins alpha 4 (GJA4 or connexin 37; CX37), alpha 1 (GJA1 or connexin 43; CX43) and gamma 1 (GJC1 or connexin 45; CX45) are involved in cell communication and folliculogenesis. 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) alters Cx37 and Cx43 expression in cultured neonatal rat ovaries. Additionally, obesity has an additive effect on DMBA-induced ovarian cell death and follicle depletion, thus, we investigated in vivo impacts of obesity and DMBA on CX protein levels. Ovaries were collected from lean and obese mice aged 6, 12, 18, or 24 wks. A subset of 18 wk old mice (lean and obese) were dosed with sesame oil or DMBA (1 mg/kg; ip) for 14 days and ovaries collected 3 days thereafter. Cx43 and Cx45 mRNA and protein levels decreased (P < 0.05) after 18 wks while Cx37 mRNA and protein levels decreased (P < 0.05) after 24 wks in obese ovaries. Cx37 mRNA and antral follicle protein staining intensity were reduced (P < 0.05) by obesity while total CX37 protein was reduced (P < 0.05) in DMBA exposed obese ovaries. Cx43 mRNA and total protein levels were decreased (P < 0.05) by DMBA in both lean and obese ovaries while basal protein staining intensity was reduced (P < 0.05) in obese controls. Cx45 mRNA, total protein and protein staining intensity level were decreased (P < 0.05) by obesity. These data support that obesity temporally alters gap junction protein expression and that DMBA-induced ovotoxicity may involve reduced gap junction protein function. - Highlights: • Ovarian gap junction proteins are affected by ovarian aging and obesity. • DMBA exposure negatively impacts gap junction proteins. • Altered gap junction proteins may contribute to infertility.

  10. Gap junction mediated intercellular metabolite transfer in the cochlea is compromised in connexin30 null mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qing Chang

    Full Text Available Connexin26 (Cx26 and connexin30 (Cx30 are two major protein subunits that co-assemble to form gap junctions (GJs in the cochlea. Mutations in either one of them are the major cause of non-syndromic prelingual deafness in humans. Because the mechanisms of cochlear pathogenesis caused by Cx mutations are unclear, we investigated effects of Cx30 null mutation on GJ-mediated ionic and metabolic coupling in the cochlea of mice. A novel flattened cochlear preparation was used to directly assess intercellular coupling in the sensory epithelium of the cochlea. Double-electrode patch clamp recordings revealed that the absence of Cx30 did not significantly change GJ conductance among the cochlear supporting cells. The preserved electrical coupling is consistent with immunolabeling data showing extensive Cx26 GJs in the cochlea of the mutant mice. In contrast, dye diffusion assays showed that the rate and extent of intercellular transfer of multiple fluorescent dyes (including a non-metabolizable D-glucose analogue, 2-NBDG among cochlear supporting cells were severely reduced in Cx30 null mice. Since the sensory epithelium in the cochlea is an avascular organ, GJ-facilitated intercellular transfer of nutrient and signaling molecules may play essential roles in cellular homeostasis. To test this possibility, NBDG was used as a tracer to study the contribution of GJs in transporting glucose into the cochlear sensory epithelium when delivered systemically. NBDG uptake in cochlear supporting cells was significantly reduced in Cx30 null mice. The decrease was also observed with GJ blockers or glucose competition, supporting the specificity of our tests. These data indicate that GJs facilitate efficient uptake of glucose in the supporting cells. This study provides the first direct experimental evidence showing that the transfer of metabolically-important molecules in cochlear supporting cells is dependent on the normal function of GJs, thereby suggesting a

  11. Cell-cell interactions of isolated and cultured oligodendrocytes: formation of linear occluding junctions and expression of peculiar intramembrane particles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massa, P T; Szuchet, S; Mugnaini, E

    1984-12-01

    Oligodendrocytes were isolated from lamb brain. Freshly isolated cells and cultured cells, either 1- to 4-day-old unattached or 1- to 5-week-old attached, were examined by thin section and freeze-fracture electron microscopy. Freeze-fracture of freshly isolated oligodendrocytes showed globular and elongated intramembrane particles similar to those previously described in oligodendrocytes in situ. Enrichment of these particles was seen at sites of inter-oligodendrocyte contact. Numerous gap junctions and scattered linear tight junctional arrays were apparent. Gap junctions were connected to blebs of astrocytic plasma membrane sheared off during isolation, whereas tight junctions were facing extracellular space or blebs of oligodendrocytic plasma membrane. Thin sections of cultured, unattached oligodendrocytes showed rounded cell bodies touching one another at points without forming specialized cell junctions. Cells plated on polylysine-coated aclar dishes attached, emanated numerous, pleomorphic processes, and expressed galactocerebroside and myelin basic protein, characteristic markers for oligodendrocytes. Thin sections showed typical oligodendrocyte ultrastructure but also intermediate filaments not present in unattached cultures. Freeze-fracture showed intramembrane particles similar to but more numerous, and with a different fracture face repartition, than those seen in oligodendrocytes, freshly isolated or in situ. Gap junctions were small and rare. Apposed oligodendrocyte plasma membrane formed linear tight junctions which became more numerous with time in culture. Thus, cultured oligodendrocytes isolated from ovine brains develop and maintain features characteristic of mature oligodendrocytes in situ and can be used to explore formation and maintenance of tight junctions and possibly other classes of cell-cell interactions important in the process of myelination.

  12. Triple junction polymer solar cells for photoelectrochemical water splitting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Esiner, S.; Eersel, van H.; Wienk, M.M.; Janssen, R.A.J.

    2013-01-01

    A triple junction polymer solar cell in a novel 1 + 2 type configuration provides photoelectrochemical water splitting in its maximum power point at V ˜ 1.70 V with an estimated solar to hydrogen energy conversion efficiency of 3.1%. The triple junction cell consists of a wide bandgap front cell and

  13. A versatile optical junction using photonic band-gap guidance and self collimation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gupta, Man Mohan; Medhekar, Sarang, E-mail: smedhekarbit@gmail.com [Centre for Applied Physics, Central University of Jharkhand, Ranchi 835205 (India)

    2014-09-29

    We show that it is possible to design two photonic crystal (PC) structures such that an optical beam of desired wavelength gets guided within the line defect of the first structure (photonic band gap guidance) and the same beam gets guided in the second structure by self-collimation. Using two dimensional simulation of a design made of the combination of these two structures, we propose an optical junction that allows for crossing of two optical signals of same wavelength and same polarization with very low crosstalk. Moreover, the junction can be operated at number of frequencies in a wide range. Crossing of multiple beams with very low cross talk is also possible. The proposed junction should be important in future integrated photonic circuits.

  14. Barreloid Borders and Neuronal Activity Shape Panglial Gap Junction-Coupled Networks in the Mouse Thalamus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claus, Lena; Philippot, Camille; Griemsmann, Stephanie; Timmermann, Aline; Jabs, Ronald; Henneberger, Christian; Kettenmann, Helmut; Steinhäuser, Christian

    2018-01-01

    The ventral posterior nucleus of the thalamus plays an important role in somatosensory information processing. It contains elongated cellular domains called barreloids, which are the structural basis for the somatotopic organization of vibrissae representation. So far, the organization of glial networks in these barreloid structures and its modulation by neuronal activity has not been studied. We have developed a method to visualize thalamic barreloid fields in acute slices. Combining electrophysiology, immunohistochemistry, and electroporation in transgenic mice with cell type-specific fluorescence labeling, we provide the first structure-function analyses of barreloidal glial gap junction networks. We observed coupled networks, which comprised both astrocytes and oligodendrocytes. The spread of tracers or a fluorescent glucose derivative through these networks was dependent on neuronal activity and limited by the barreloid borders, which were formed by uncoupled or weakly coupled oligodendrocytes. Neuronal somata were distributed homogeneously across barreloid fields with their processes running in parallel to the barreloid borders. Many astrocytes and oligodendrocytes were not part of the panglial networks. Thus, oligodendrocytes are the cellular elements limiting the communicating panglial network to a single barreloid, which might be important to ensure proper metabolic support to active neurons located within a particular vibrissae signaling pathway. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Neuroinflammation leads to region-dependent alterations in astrocyte gap junction communication and hemichannel activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karpuk, Nikolay; Burkovetskaya, Maria; Fritz, Teresa; Angle, Amanda; Kielian, Tammy

    2011-01-12

    Inflammation attenuates gap junction (GJ) communication in cultured astrocytes. Here we used a well-characterized model of experimental brain abscess as a tool to query effects of the CNS inflammatory milieu on astrocyte GJ communication and electrophysiological properties. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were performed on green fluorescent protein (GFP)-positive astrocytes in acute brain slices from glial fibrillary acidic protein-GFP mice at 3 or 7 d after Staphylococcus aureus infection in the striatum. Astrocyte GJ communication was significantly attenuated in regions immediately surrounding the abscess margins and progressively increased to levels typical of uninfected brain with increasing distance from the abscess proper. Conversely, astrocytes bordering the abscess demonstrated hemichannel activity as evident by enhanced ethidium bromide (EtBr) uptake that could be blocked by several pharmacological inhibitors, including the connexin 43 (Cx43) mimetic peptide Gap26, carbenoxolone, the pannexin1 (Panx1) mimetic peptide (10)Panx1, and probenecid. However, hemichannel opening was transient with astrocytic EtBr uptake observed near the abscess at day 3 but not day 7 after infection. The region-dependent pattern of hemichannel activity at day 3 directly correlated with increases in Cx43, Cx30, Panx1, and glutamate transporter expression (glial L-glutamate transporter and L-glutamate/L-aspartate transporter) along the abscess margins. Changes in astrocyte resting membrane potential and input conductance correlated with the observed changes in GJ communication and hemichannel activity. Collectively, these findings indicate that astrocyte coupling and electrical properties are most dramatically affected near the primary inflammatory site and reveal an opposing relationship between the open states of GJ channels versus hemichannels during acute infection. This relationship may extend to other CNS diseases typified with an inflammatory component.

  16. A unified framework for spiking and gap-junction interactions in distributed neuronal network simulations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan eHahne

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Contemporary simulators for networks of point and few-compartment model neurons come with a plethora of ready-to-use neuron and synapse models and support complex network topologies. Recent technological advancements have broadened the spectrum of application further to the efficient simulation of brain-scale networks on supercomputers. In distributed network simulations the amount of spike data that accrues per millisecond and process is typically low, such that a common optimization strategy is to communicate spikes at relatively long intervals, where the upper limit is given by the shortest synaptic transmission delay in the network. This approach is well-suited for simulations that employ only chemical synapses but it has so far impeded the incorporation of gap-junction models, which require instantaneous neuronal interactions. Here, we present a numerical algorithm based on a waveform-relaxation technique which allows for network simulations with gap junctions in a way that is compatible with the delayed communication strategy. Using a reference implementation in the NEST simulator, we demonstrate that the algorithm and the required data structures can be smoothly integrated with existing code such that they complement the infrastructure for spiking connections. To show that the unified framework for gap-junction and spiking interactions achieves high performance and delivers high accuracy...

  17. [Effects of gap junction blocking on the oxygen partial pressure in acupoints of the bladder meridian].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qi; Yu, Wei-Chang; Jiang, Hong-Zhi; Chen, Sheng-Li; Zhang, Ming-Min; Kong, E-Sheng; Huang, Guang-Ying

    2010-12-01

    To explore the relation between gap junction and meridian phenomenon. The oxygen partial pressure in acupoints [see text for formula] and in their corresponding non-acupoints of the Bladder Meridian was observed with the needle-type tissue oxygen tension sensor in the gap junction blocking goats by 1-Heptanol injection and the Connexin 43 (Cx43) gene knockout mice. (1) The oxygen partial pressure in acupoints of Bladder Meridian on goats was higher than that in non-acupoints after 1-Heptanol injection with significant differences between them (both P oxygen partial pressure in acupoints of Bladder Meridian on goats increased significantly after injecting 1-Heptanol as compare with that either injecting normal saline or injecting nothing with significant differences between them (all P oxygen partial pressure in acupoints of the Bladder Meridian was significantly higher than that in the non-acupoint controls in Cx43 wild type (WT) mice (all P oxygen partial pressure between acupoints and non-acupoint controls showed no significant differences (all P > 0.05). (4) In acupoints, the oxygen partial pressure in Cx43 WT mice was significantly higher than that in Cx43 HT mice (all P 0.05). Gap junction maybe the essential factor in signal transduction of acupuncture.

  18. Chemical Synaptic and Gap Junctional Interactions Between Principal Neurons: Partners in Epileptogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Traub, Roger D.; Cunningham, Mark O.; Whittington, Miles A.

    2010-01-01

    Field potential signals, corresponding to electrographic seizures in cortical structures, often contain two components, which sometimes appear to be separable and other times to be superimposed. The first component consists of low-amplitude very fast oscillations (VFO, > 70–80 Hz); the second component consists of larger amplitude transients, lasting tens to hundreds of ms, and variously called population spikes, EEG spikes, or bursts – terms chosen in part because of the cellular correlates of the field events. To first approximation, the two components arise because of distinctive types of cellular interactions: gap junctions for VFO (a model of which is reviewed in the following), and recurrent synaptic excitation and/or inhibition for the transients. With in vitro studies of epileptic human neocortical tissue, it is possible to elicit VFO alone, or VFO superimposed on a large transient, but not a large transient without the VFO. If such observations prove to be general, they would imply that gap junction-mediated interactions are the primary factor in epileptogenesis. It appears to be the case then, that in the setting of seizure initiation (but not necessarily under physiological conditions), the gain of gap junction-mediated circuits can actually be larger than the gain in excitatory synaptic circuits. PMID:21168305

  19. Articular chondrocyte network mediated by gap junctions: role in metabolic cartilage homeostasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayan, Maria D; Gago-Fuentes, Raquel; Carpintero-Fernandez, Paula; Fernandez-Puente, Patricia; Filgueira-Fernandez, Purificacion; Goyanes, Noa; Valiunas, Virginijus; Brink, Peter R; Goldberg, Gary S; Blanco, Francisco J

    2017-01-01

    Objective This study investigated whether chondrocytes within the cartilage matrix have the capacity to communicate through intercellular connections mediated by voltage-gated gap junction (GJ) channels. Methods Frozen cartilage samples were used for immunofluorescence and immunohistochemistry assays. Samples were embedded in cacodylate buffer before dehydration for scanning electron microscopy. Co-immunoprecipitation experiments and mass spectrometry (MS) were performed to identify proteins that interact with the C-terminal end of Cx43. GJ communication was studied through in situ electroporation, electrophysiology and dye injection experiments. A transwell layered culture system and MS were used to identify and quantify transferred amino acids. Results Microscopic images revealed the presence of multiple cellular projections connecting chondrocytes within the matrix. These projections were between 5 and 150 μm in length. MS data analysis indicated that the C-terminus of Cx43 interacts with several cytoskeletal proteins implicated in Cx trafficking and GJ assembly, including α-tubulin and β-tubulin, actin, and vinculin. Electrophysiology experiments demonstrated that 12-mer oligonucleotides could be transferred between chondrocytes within 12 min after injection. Glucose was homogeneously distributed within 22 and 35 min. No transfer was detected when glucose was electroporated into A549 cells, which have no GJs. Transwell layered culture systems coupled with MS analysis revealed connexins can mediate the transfer of L-lysine and L-arginine between chondrocytes. Conclusions This study reveals that intercellular connections between chondrocytes contain GJs that play a key role in cell-cell communication and a metabolic function by exchange of nutrients including glucose and essential amino acids. A three-dimensional cellular network mediated through GJs might mediate metabolic and physiological homeostasis to maintain cartilage tissue. PMID:24225059

  20. Different mechanisms of modulation of gap junction communication by non-genotoxic carcinogens in rat liver in vivo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cowles, C.; Mally, A.; Chipman, J.K.

    2007-01-01

    This is a comparative study of the mechanisms by which three different rodent non-genotoxic carcinogens modulate connexin-mediated gap junction intercellular communication in male rat liver in vivo. In the case of the peroxisome proliferating agent Wy-14,643, a non-hepatotoxic dose of 50 mg/kg led to a marked loss of inter-hepatocyte dye transfer associated with a loss of both Cx32 and Cx26 protein expression. In contrast, p,p'-dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) at a non-hepatotoxic dose (25 mg/kg) was not found to alter Cx32 or Cx26 expression or to produce a measurable Cx32 serine phosphorylation but did give a small, significant reduction of cell communication. Carbon tetrachloride (CCl 4 ) did not affect cell communication (despite a small significant reduction of Cx32 content) at a non-hepatotoxic dose. Both loss of communication and Cx32 expression was observed only at a dose that caused hepatocyte toxicity as evidenced by increased serum alanine aminotransferase activity. Overall, the findings emphasise that loss of gap junctional communication in vivo can contribute to carcinogenesis by non-genotoxic carcinogens through different primary mechanism. In contrast to Wy-14,643 and DDT, the results with CCl 4 are consistent with a requirement for hepatotoxicity in its carcinogenic action

  1. Thalamic gap junctions control local neuronal synchrony and influence macroscopic oscillation amplitude during EEG alpha rhythms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart eHughes

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Although EEG alpha ( (8-13 Hz rhythms are often considered to reflect an ‘idling’ brain state, numerous studies indicate that they are also related to many aspects of perception. Recently, we outlined a potential cellular substrate by which such aspects of perception might be linked to basic  rhythm mechanisms. This scheme relies on a specialized subset of rhythmically bursting thalamocortical (TC neurons (high-threshold bursting cells in the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN which are interconnected by gap junctions (GJs. By engaging GABAergic interneurons, that in turn inhibit conventional relay-mode TC neurons, these cells can lead to an effective temporal framing of thalamic relay-mode output. Although the role of GJs is pivotal in this scheme, evidence for their involvement in thalamic  rhythms has thus far mainly derived from experiments in in vitro slice preparations. In addition, direct anatomical evidence of neuronal GJs in the LGN is currently lacking. To address the first of these issues we tested the effects of the GJ inhibitors, carbenoxolone (CBX and 18-glycyrrhetinic acid (18-GA, given directly to the LGN via reverse microdialysis, on spontaneous LGN and EEG  rhythms in behaving cats. We also examined the effect of CBX on  rhythm-related LGN unit activity. Indicative of a role for thalamic GJs in these activities, 18-GA and CBX reversibly suppressed both LGN and EEG  rhythms, with CBX also decreasing neuronal synchrony. To address the second point, we used electron microscopy to obtain definitive ultrastructural evidence for the presence of GJs between neurons in the cat LGN. As interneurons show no phenotypic evidence of GJ coupling (i.e. dye-coupling and spikelets we conclude that these GJs must belong to TC neurons. The potential significance of these findings for relating macroscopic changes in  rhythms to basic cellular processes is discussed.

  2. Analysis of trafficking, stability and function of human connexin 26 gap junction channels with deafness-causing mutations in the fourth transmembrane helix.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cinzia Ambrosi

    Full Text Available Human Connexin26 gene mutations cause hearing loss. These hereditary mutations are the leading cause of childhood deafness worldwide. Mutations in gap junction proteins (connexins can impair intercellular communication by eliminating protein synthesis, mis-trafficking, or inducing channels that fail to dock or have aberrant function. We previously identified a new class of mutants that form non-functional gap junction channels and hemichannels (connexons by disrupting packing and inter-helix interactions. Here we analyzed fourteen point mutations in the fourth transmembrane helix of connexin26 (Cx26 that cause non-syndromic hearing loss. Eight mutations caused mis-trafficking (K188R, F191L, V198M, S199F, G200R, I203K, L205P, T208P. Of the remaining six that formed gap junctions in mammalian cells, M195T and A197S formed stable hemichannels after isolation with a baculovirus/Sf9 protein purification system, while C202F, I203T, L205V and N206S formed hemichannels with varying degrees of instability. The function of all six gap junction-forming mutants was further assessed through measurement of dye coupling in mammalian cells and junctional conductance in paired Xenopus oocytes. Dye coupling between cell pairs was reduced by varying degrees for all six mutants. In homotypic oocyte pairings, only A197S induced measurable conductance. In heterotypic pairings with wild-type Cx26, five of the six mutants formed functional gap junction channels, albeit with reduced efficiency. None of the mutants displayed significant alterations in sensitivity to transjunctional voltage or induced conductive hemichannels in single oocytes. Intra-hemichannel interactions between mutant and wild-type proteins were assessed in rescue experiments using baculovirus expression in Sf9 insect cells. Of the four unstable mutations (C202F, I203T, L205V, N206S only C202F and N206S formed stable hemichannels when co-expressed with wild-type Cx26. Stable M195T hemichannels

  3. Gap junctions and memory: an investigation using a single trial discrimination avoidance task for the neonate chick.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verwey, L J; Edwards, T M

    2010-02-01

    Gap junctions are important to how the brain functions but are relatively under-investigated with respect to their contribution towards behaviour. In the present study a single trial discrimination avoidance task was used to investigate the effect of the gap junction inhibitor 18-alpha-glycyrrhetinic acid (alphaGA) on retention. Past studies within our research group have implied a potential role for gap junctions during the short-term memory (STM) stage which decays by 15 min post-training. A retention function study comparing 10 microM alphaGA and vehicle given immediately post-training demonstrated a significant main effect for drug with retention loss at all times of test (10-180 min post-training). Given that the most common gap junction in the brain is that forming the astrocytic network it is reasonable to conclude that alphaGA was acting upon these. To confirm this finding and interpretation two additional investigations were undertaken using endothelin-1 (ET-1) and ET-1+tolbutamide. Importantly, a retention function study using 10nM ET-1 replicated the retention loss observed for alphaGA. In order to confirm that ET-1 was acting on astrocytic gap junctions the amnestic action of ET-1 was effectively challenged with increasing concentrations of tolbutamide. The present findings suggest that astrocytic gap junctions are important for memory processing. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. No junctional communication between epithelial cells in hydra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Laat, S W; Tertoolen, L G; Grimmelikhuijzen, C J

    1980-01-01

    junctions between epithelial cells of hydra. However, until now, there has been no report published on whether these junctions enable the epithelial cells to exchange molecules of small molecular weight, as has been described in other organisms. Therefore we decided to investigate the communicative...... properties of the junctional membranes by electrophysiological methods and by intracellular-dye iontophoresis. We report here that no electrotonic coupling is detectable between epithelial cells of Hydra attenuata in: (1) intact animals, (2) head-regenerating animals, (3) cell re-aggregates, and (4) hydra...

  5. Tanshinone IIA increases the bystander effect of herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase/ganciclovir gene therapy via enhanced gap junctional intercellular communication.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianyong Xiao

    Full Text Available The bystander effect is an intriguing phenomenon by which adjacent cells become sensitized to drug treatment during gene therapy with herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase/ganciclovir (HSV-tk/GCV. This effect is reported to be mediated by gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC, and therefore, we postulated that upregulation of genes that facilitate GJIC may enhance the HSV-tk/GCV bystander effect. Previous findings have shown Tanshinone IIA (Tan IIA, a chemical substance derived from a Chinese medicine herb, promotes the upregulation of the connexins Cx26 and Cx43 in B16 cells. Because gap junctions are formed by connexins, we hypothesized that Tan IIA might increase GJIC. Our results show that Tan IIA increased GJIC in B16 melanoma cells, leading to more efficient GCV-induced bystander killing in cells stably expressing HSV-tk. Additionally, in vivo experiments demonstrated that tumors in mice with 10% HSV-tk positive B16 cells and 90% wild-type B16 cells became smaller following treatment with the combination of GCV and Tan IIA as compared to GCV or Tan IIA alone. These data demonstrate that Tan IIA can augment the bystander effect of HSV-tk/GCV system through increased gap junction coupling, which adds strength to the promising strategy that develops connexins inducer to potentiate the effects of suicide gene therapy.

  6. Entrainment, retention, and transport of freely swimming fish in junction gaps between commercial barges operating on the Illinois Waterway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Jeremiah J.; Jackson, P. Ryan; Engel, Frank; LeRoy, Jessica Z.; Neeley, Rebecca N.; Finney, Samuel T.; Murphy, Elizabeth A.

    2016-01-01

    Large Electric Dispersal Barriers were constructed in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal (CSSC) to prevent the transfer of invasive fish species between the Mississippi River Basin and the Great Lakes Basin while simultaneously allowing the passage of commercial barge traffic. We investigated the potential for entrainment, retention, and transport of freely swimming fish within large gaps (> 50 m3) created at junction points between barges. Modified mark and capture trials were employed to assess fish entrainment, retention, and transport by barge tows. A multi-beam sonar system enabled estimation of fish abundance within barge junction gaps. Barges were also instrumented with acoustic Doppler velocity meters to map the velocity distribution in the water surrounding the barge and in the gap formed at the junction of two barges. Results indicate that the water inside the gap can move upstream with a barge tow at speeds near the barge tow travel speed. Water within 1 m to the side of the barge junction gaps was observed to move upstream with the barge tow. Observed transverse and vertical water velocities suggest pathways by which fish may potentially be entrained into barge junction gaps. Results of mark and capture trials provide direct evidence that small fish can become entrained by barges, retained within junction gaps, and transported over distances of at least 15.5 km. Fish entrained within the barge junction gap were retained in that space as the barge tow transited through locks and the Electric Dispersal Barriers, which would be expected to impede fish movement upstream.

  7. Dilute Nitrides For 4-And 6- Junction Space Solar Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Essig, S.; Stammler, E.; Ronsch, S.; Oliva, E.; Schachtner, M.; Siefer, G.; Bett, A. W.; Dimroth, F.

    2011-10-01

    According to simulations the efficiency of conventional, lattice-matched GaInP/GaInAs/Ge triple-junction space solar cells can be strongly increased by the incorporation of additional junctions. In this way the existing excess current of the Germanium bottom cell can be reduced and the voltage of the stack can be increased. In particular, the use of 1.0 eV materials like GaInNAs opens the door for solar cells with significantly improved conversion efficiency. We have investigated the material properties of GaInNAs grown by metal organic vapour phase epitaxy (MOVPE) and its impact on the quantum efficiency of solar cells. Furthermore we have developed a GaInNAs subcell with a bandgap energy of 1.0 eV and integrated it into a GaInP/GaInAs/GaInNAs/Ge 4-junction and a AlGaInP/GaInP/AlGaInAs/GaInAs/GaInNAs/Ge 6- junction space solar cell. The material quality of the dilute nitride junction limits the current density of these devices to 9.3 mA/cm2 (AM0). This is not sufficient for a 4-junction cell but may lead to current matched 6- junction devices in the future.

  8. Connexin 30 expression and frequency of connexin heterogeneity in astrocyte gap junction plaques increase with age in the rat retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hussein Mansour

    Full Text Available We investigated age-associated changes in retinal astrocyte connexins (Cx by assaying Cx numbers, plaque sizes, protein expression levels and heterogeneity of gap junctions utilizing six-marker immunohistochemistry (IHC. We compared Wistar rat retinal wholemounts in animals aged 3 (young adult, 9 (middle-aged and 22 months (aged. We determined that retinal astrocytes have gap junctions composed of Cx26, -30, -43 and -45. Cx30 was consistently elevated at 22 months compared to younger ages both when associated with parenchymal astrocytes and vascular-associated astrocytes. Not only was the absolute number of Cx30 plaques significantly higher (P<0.05 but the size of the plaques was significantly larger at 22 months compared to younger ages (p<0.05. With age, Cx26 increased significantly initially, but returned to basal levels; whereas Cx43 expression remained low and stable with age. Evidence that astrocytes alter connexin compositions of gap junctions was demonstrated by the significant increase in the number of Cx26/Cx45 gap junctions with age. We also found gap junctions comprised of 1, 2, 3 or 4 Cx proteins suggesting that retinal astrocytes use various connexin protein combinations in their gap junctions during development and aging. These data provides new insight into the dynamic and extensive Cx network utilized by retinal astrocytes for communication within both the parenchyma and vasculature for the maintenance of normal retinal physiology with age. This characterisation of the changes in astrocytic gap junctional communication with age in the CNS is crucial to the understanding of physiological aging and age-related neurodegenerative diseases.

  9. Solar energy converters based on multi-junction photoemission solar cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tereshchenko, O E; Golyashov, V A; Rodionov, A A; Chistokhin, I B; Kislykh, N V; Mironov, A V; Aksenov, V V

    2017-11-23

    Multi-junction solar cells with multiple p-n junctions made of different semiconductor materials have multiple bandgaps that allow reducing the relaxation energy loss and substantially increase the power-conversion efficiency. The choice of materials for each sub-cell is very limited due to the difficulties in extracting the current between the layers caused by the requirements for lattice- and current-matching. We propose a new vacuum multi-junction solar cell with multiple p-n junctions separated by vacuum gaps that allow using different semiconductor materials as cathode and anode, both activated to the state of effective negative electron affinity (NEA). In this work, the compact proximity focused vacuum tube with the GaAs(Cs,O) photocathode and AlGaAs/GaAs-(Cs,O) anode with GaAs quantum wells (QWs) is used as a prototype of a vacuum single-junction solar cell. The photodiode with the p-AlGaAs/GaAs anode showed the spectral power-conversion efficiency of about 1% at V bias  = 0 in transmission and reflection modes, while, at V bias  = 0.5 V, the efficiency increased up to 10%. In terms of energy conservation, we found the condition at which the energy cathode-to-anode transition was close to 1. Considering only the energy conservation part, the NEA-cell power-conversion efficiency can rich a quantum yield value which is measured up to more than 50%.

  10. Fractional Josephson vortices in two-gap superconductor long Josephson junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ju

    2014-03-01

    We investigated the phase dynamics of long Josephson junctions (LJJ) with two-gap superconductors in the broken time reversal symmetry state. In this LJJ, spatial phase textures (i-solitons) can be excited due to the presence of two condensates and the interband Joesphson effect between them. The presence of a spatial phase texture in each superconductor layer leads to a spatial variation of the critical current density between the superconductor layers. We find that this spatial dependence of the crtitical current density can self-generate magnetic flux in the insulator layer, resulting in Josephson vortices with fractional flux quanta. Similar to the situation in a YBa2 Cu3O7 - x superconductor film grain boundary, the fractionalization of a Josephson vortex arises as a response to either periodic or random excitation of i-solitions. This suggests that magnetic flux measurements may be used to probe i-soliton excitations in multi-gap superconductor LJJs.

  11. Low-Cost Multi-Junction Photovoltaic Cells, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The proposed SBIR project will provide a pathway to dramatically reduce the cost of multi-junction solar cells. The project leverages a TRL6 micropackaging process...

  12. Two-dimensional macroscopic quantum tunneling in multi-gap superconductor Josephson junctions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Asai, Hidehiro; Kawabata, Shiro; Ota, Yukihiro; Machida, Masahiko

    2014-01-01

    Low-temperature characters of superconducting devices yield definite probes for different superconducting phenomena. We study the macroscopic quantum tunneling (MQT) in a Josephson junction, composed of a single-gap superconductor and a two-gap superconductor. Since this junction has two kinds to the superconducting phase differences, calculating the MQT escape rate requires the analysis of quantum tunneling in a multi-dimensional configuration space. Our approach is the semi-classical approximation along a 1D curve in a 2D potential- energy landscape, connecting two adjacent potential (local) minimums through a saddle point. We find that this system has two plausible tunneling paths; an in-phase path and an out-of-phase path. The former is characterized by the Josephson-plasma frequency, whereas the latter is by the frequency of the characteristic collective mode in a two-band superconductor, Josephson- Leggett mode. Depending on external bias current and inter-band Josephson-coupling energy, one of them mainly contributes to the MQT. Our numerical calculations show that the difference between the in-phase path and the out-of-phase path is manifest, with respect to the bias- current-dependence of the MQT escape rate. This result suggests that our MQT setting be an indicator of the Josephson-Leggett mode

  13. Inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication by noncoplanar polychlorinated biphenyls: Inhibitory potencies and screening for potential mode(s) of action

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Machala, M.; Bláha, L.; Vondráček, Jan; Trosko, J. E.; Scott, J.; Upham, B. L.

    2003-01-01

    Roč. 76, č. 1 (2003), s. 102-111 ISSN 1096-6080 R&D Projects: GA MZe QC0194; GA ČR GA525/00/D101 Grant - others:National Institute of Health(US) P42 ES04911-07 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z5004920 Keywords : WB-F344 cell line * gap junction * PCB congeners Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 3.067, year: 2003

  14. Solar cell junction temperature measurement of PV module

    KAUST Repository

    Huang, B.J.

    2011-02-01

    The present study develops a simple non-destructive method to measure the solar cell junction temperature of PV module. The PV module was put in the environmental chamber with precise temperature control to keep the solar PV module as well as the cell junction in thermal equilibrium with the chamber. The open-circuit voltage of PV module Voc is then measured using a short pulse of solar irradiation provided by a solar simulator. Repeating the measurements at different environment temperature (40-80°C) and solar irradiation S (200-1000W/m2), the correlation between the open-circuit voltage Voc, the junction temperature Tj, and solar irradiation S is derived.The fundamental correlation of the PV module is utilized for on-site monitoring of solar cell junction temperature using the measured Voc and S at a short time instant with open circuit. The junction temperature Tj is then determined using the measured S and Voc through the fundamental correlation. The outdoor test results show that the junction temperature measured using the present method, Tjo, is more accurate. The maximum error using the average surface temperature Tave as the junction temperature is 4.8 °C underestimation; while the maximum error using the present method is 1.3 °C underestimation. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

  15. Functional roles of the amino terminal domain in determining biophysical properties of Cx50 gap junction channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li eXin

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Communication through gap junction channels is essential for synchronized and coordinated cellular activities. The gap junction channel pore size, its switch control for opening/closing, and the modulations by chemicals can be different depending on the connexin subtypes that compose the channel. Recent structural and functional studies provide compelling evidence that the amino terminal (NT domains of several connexins line the pore of gap junction channels and play an important role in single channel conductance (γj and transjunctional voltage-dependent gating (Vj-gating. This article reviews recent studies conducted on a series of mutations/chimeras in the NT domain of connexin50 (Cx50. Functional examination of the gap junction channels formed by these mutants/chimeras shows the net charge number at the NT domain to be an important factor in γj and in Vj-gating. Furthermore, with an increase in the net negative charge at the NT domain, we observed an increase in the γj, as well as changes in the parameters of the Boltzmann fit of the normalized steady-state conductance and Vj relationship. Our data are consistent with a structural model where the NT domain of Cx50 lines the gap junction pore and plays an important role in sensing Vj and in the subsequent conformational changes leading to gating, as well as in limiting the rate of ion permeation.

  16. Perfect GMR effect in gapped graphene-based ferromagnetic normal ferromagnetic junctions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hossein Karbaschi; Gholam Reza Rashedi

    2015-01-01

    We investigate the quantum transport property in gapped graphene-based ferromagnetic/normal/ferromagnetic (FG/NG/FG) junctions by using the Dirac–Bogoliubov–de Gennes equation. The graphene is fabricated on SiC and BN substrates separately, so carriers in FG/NG/FG structures are considered as massive relativistic particles. Transmission prob-ability, charge, and spin conductances are studied as a function of exchange energy of ferromagnets (h), size of graphene gap, and thickness of normal graphene region (L) respectively. Using the experimental values of Fermi energy in the normal graphene part (EFN∼400 meV) and energy gap in graphene (260 meV for SiC and 50 meV for BN substrate), it is shown that this structure can be used for both spin-up and spin-down polarized current. The latter case has different behavior of gapped FG/NG/FG from that of gapless FG/NG/FG structures. Also perfect charge giant magnetoresistance is observed in a range of EFN−mv2F

  17. 3-D modeling of triple junction solar cells on 2-D gratings with optimized intermediate and back reflectors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Isabella, O.; Elshinawy, M.A.A.; Solntsev, S.; Zeman, M.

    2012-01-01

    Superstrate thin-film silicon triple-junction solar cells on 2-D gratings were optimized using opto-electrical modeling. Tuning the thickness of intermediate and back reflectors and the band gap of the middle cell resulted in 17% initial efficiency.

  18. Behavior of tight-junction, adherens-junction and cell polarity proteins during HNF-4α-induced epithelial polarization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Satohisa, Seiro; Chiba, Hideki; Osanai, Makoto; Ohno, Shigeo; Kojima, Takashi; Saito, Tsuyoshi; Sawada, Norimasa

    2005-01-01

    We previously reported that expression of tight-junction molecules occludin, claudin-6 and claudin-7, as well as establishment of epithelial polarity, was triggered in mouse F9 cells expressing hepatocyte nuclear factor (HNF)-4α [H. Chiba, T. Gotoh, T. Kojima, S. Satohisa, K. Kikuchi, M. Osanai, N. Sawada. Hepatocyte nuclear factor (HNF)-4α triggers formation of functional tight junctions and establishment of polarized epithelial morphology in F9 embryonal carcinoma cells, Exp. Cell Res. 286 (2003) 288-297]. Using these cells, we examined in the present study behavior of tight-junction, adherens-junction and cell polarity proteins and elucidated the molecular mechanism behind HNF-4α-initiated junction formation and epithelial polarization. We herein show that not only ZO-1 and ZO-2, but also ZO-3, junctional adhesion molecule (JAM)-B, JAM-C and cell polarity proteins PAR-3, PAR-6 and atypical protein kinase C (aPKC) accumulate at primordial adherens junctions in undifferentiated F9 cells. In contrast, CRB3, Pals1 and PATJ appeared to exhibit distinct subcellular localization in immature cells. Induced expression of HNF-4α led to translocation of these tight-junction and cell polarity proteins to beltlike tight junctions, where occludin, claudin-6 and claudin-7 were assembled, in differentiated cells. Interestingly, PAR-6, aPKC, CRB3 and Pals1, but not PAR-3 or PATJ, were also concentrated on the apical membranes in differentiated cells. These findings indicate that HNF-4α provokes not only expression of tight-junction adhesion molecules, but also modulation of subcellular distribution of junction and cell polarity proteins, resulting in junction formation and epithelial polarization

  19. Gap junction intercellular communication mediated by connexin43 in astrocytes is essential for their resistance to oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le, Hoa T; Sin, Wun Chey; Lozinsky, Shannon; Bechberger, John; Vega, José Luis; Guo, Xu Qiu; Sáez, Juan C; Naus, Christian C

    2014-01-17

    Oxidative stress induced by reactive oxygen species (ROS) is associated with various neurological disorders including aging, neurodegenerative diseases, as well as traumatic and ischemic insults. Astrocytes have an important role in the anti-oxidative defense in the brain. The gap junction protein connexin43 (Cx43) forms intercellular channels as well as hemichannels in astrocytes. In the present study, we investigated the contribution of Cx43 to astrocytic death induced by the ROS hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and the mechanism by which Cx43 exerts its effects. Lack of Cx43 expression or blockage of Cx43 channels resulted in increased ROS-induced astrocytic death, supporting a cell protective effect of functional Cx43 channels. H2O2 transiently increased hemichannel activity, but reduced gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC). GJIC in wild-type astrocytes recovered after 7 h, but was absent in Cx43 knock-out astrocytes. Blockage of Cx43 hemichannels incompletely inhibited H2O2-induced hemichannel activity, indicating the presence of other hemichannel proteins. Panx1, which is predicted to be a major hemichannel contributor in astrocytes, did not appear to have any cell protective effect from H2O2 insults. Our data suggest that GJIC is important for Cx43-mediated ROS resistance. In contrast to hypoxia/reoxygenation, H2O2 treatment decreased the ratio of the hypophosphorylated isoform to total Cx43 level. Cx43 has been reported to promote astrocytic death induced by hypoxia/reoxygenation. We therefore speculate the increase in Cx43 dephosphorylation may account for the facilitation of astrocytic death. Our findings suggest that the role of Cx43 in response to cellular stress is dependent on the activation of signaling pathways leading to alteration of Cx43 phosphorylation states.

  20. ZP123 increases gap junctional conductance and prevents reentrant ventricular tachycardia during myocardial ischemia in open chest dogs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xing, Dezhi; Kjølbye, Anne Louise; Nielsen, Morten S

    2003-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: The aim of this study was to determine if the stable antiarrhythmic peptide (AAP) analogue ZP123 increases gap junctional intercellular conductance and prevents reentrant ventricular tachycardia (VT) during coronary artery occlusion. METHODS AND RESULTS: Voltage clamp experiments...... demonstrated that 10 nM ZP123 improved gap junctional intercellular conductance by 69% +/- 20% in pairs of guinea pig ventricular myocytes. VT was induced by programmed stimulation in alpha-chloralose anaesthetized open chest dogs 1 to 4 hours after coronary artery occlusion. Three-dimensional activation...... AAP analogue ZP123 increased gap junctional intercellular conductance and specifically prevented the induction of reentrant VT during ischemia in a broad dose range without proarrhythmic or hemodynamic side effects. ZP123 is a promising candidate for use in preventing ischemia-induced VT....

  1. An optimized efficient dual junction InGaN/CIGS solar cell: A numerical simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farhadi, Bita; Naseri, Mosayeb

    2016-08-01

    The photovoltaic performance of an efficient double junction InGaN/CIGS solar cell including a CdS antireflector top cover layer is studied using Silvaco ATLAS software. In this study, to gain a desired structure, the different design parameters, including the CIGS various band gaps, the doping concentration and the thickness of CdS layer are optimized. The simulation indicates that under current matching condition, an optimum efficiency of 40.42% is achieved.

  2. Characterization of cytoskeletal and junctional proteins expressed by cells cultured from human arachnoid granulation tissue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mehta Bhavya C

    2005-10-01

    the in vitro culture of arachnoidal cells grown from human AG tissue. We demonstrated that these cells in vitro continue to express some of the cytoskeletal and junctional proteins characterized previously in human AG tissue, such as proteins involved in the formation of gap junctions, desmosomes, epithelial specific adherens junctions, as well as tight junctions. These junctional proteins in particular may be important in allowing these arachnoidal cells to regulate CSF outflow.

  3. Interaction between fractional Josephson vortices in multi-gap superconductor tunnel junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ju H.

    In a long Josephson junction (LJJ) with two-band superconductors, fractionalization of Josephson vortices (fluxons) can occur in the broken time reversal symmetry state when spatial phase textures (i-solitons) are excited. Excitation of i-solitons in each superconductor layer of the junction, arising due to the presence of two condensates and the interband Josephson effect, leads to spatial variation of the critical current density between the superconductor layers. Similar to the situation in a YBa2 Cu3O7 - x superconductor film grain boundary, this spatial dependence of the crtitical current density can self-generate magnetic flux in the insulator layer, resulting in fractional fluxons with large and small fraction of flux quantum. Similar to fluxons in one-band superconductor LJJ, these fractional fluxons are found to interact with each other. The interaction between large and small fractional fluxons determines the size of a fluxon which includes two (one large and one small) fractional fluxons. We discuss the nature of interaction between fractional fluxons and suggest that i-soliton excitations in multi-gap superconductor LJJs may be probed by using magnetic flux measurements.

  4. Effect of low and staggered gap quantum wells inserted in GaAs tunnel junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louarn, K.; Claveau, Y.; Marigo-Lombart, L.; Fontaine, C.; Arnoult, A.; Piquemal, F.; Bounouh, A.; Cavassilas, N.; Almuneau, G.

    2018-04-01

    In this article, we investigate the impact of the insertion of either a type I InGaAs or a type II InGaAs/GaAsSb quantum well on the performances of MBE-grown GaAs tunnel junctions (TJs). The devices are designed and simulated using a quantum transport model based on the non-equilibrium Green’s function formalism and a 6-band k.p Hamiltonian. We experimentally observe significant improvements of the peak tunneling current density on both heterostructures with a 460-fold increase for a moderately doped GaAs TJ when the InGaAs QW is inserted at the junction interface, and a 3-fold improvement on a highly doped GaAs TJ integrating a type II InGaAs/GaAsSb QW. Thus, the simple insertion of staggered band lineup heterostructures enables us to reach a tunneling current well above the kA cm‑2 range, equivalent to the best achieved results for Si-doped GaAs TJs, implying very interesting potential for TJ-based components, such as multi-junction solar cells, vertical cavity surface emitting lasers and tunnel-field effect transistors.

  5. An Efficient Solution-Processed Intermediate Layer for Facilitating Fabrication of Organic Multi-Junction Solar Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ning Li; Baran, Derya; Forberich, Karen

    2013-01-01

    ):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) is demonstrated for series-connected multi-junction organic solar cells (OSCs). Drying at 80 °C in air is sufficient for this solution-processed IML to obtain excellent functionality and reliability, which allow the use of most of high performance donor materials in the tandem structure....... An open circuit voltage (Voc) of 0.56 V is obtained for single-junction OSCs based on a low band-gap polymer, while multi-junction OSCs based on the same absorber material deliver promising fill factor values along with fully additive Voc as the number of junctions increase. Optical and electrical...... simulations, which are reliable and promising guidelines for the design and investigation of multi-junction OSCs, are discussed. The outcome of optical and electrical simulations is in excellent agreement with the experimental data, indicating the outstanding efficiency and functionality of this solution...

  6. Regulation of gap junction conductance by calcineurin through Cx43 phosphorylation: implications for action potential conduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jabr, Rita I; Hatch, Fiona S; Salvage, Samantha C; Orlowski, Alejandro; Lampe, Paul D; Fry, Christopher H

    2016-11-01

    Cardiac arrhythmias are associated with raised intracellular [Ca 2+ ] and slowed action potential conduction caused by reduced gap junction (GJ) electrical conductance (Gj). Ventricular GJs are composed of connexin proteins (Cx43), with Gj determined by Cx43 phosphorylation status. Connexin phosphorylation is an interplay between protein kinases and phosphatases but the precise pathways are unknown. We aimed to identify key Ca 2+ -dependent phosphorylation sites on Cx43 that regulate cardiac gap junction conductance and action potential conduction velocity. We investigated the role of the Ca 2+ -dependent phosphatase, calcineurin. Intracellular [Ca 2+ ] was raised in guinea-pig myocardium by a low-Na solution or increased stimulation. Conduction velocity and Gj were measured in multicellular strips. Phosphorylation of Cx43 serine residues (S365 and S368) and of the intermediary regulator I1 at threonine35 was measured by Western blot. Measurements were made in the presence and absence of inhibitors to calcineurin, I1 or protein phosphatase-1 and phosphatase-2.Raised [Ca 2 + ] i decreased Gj, reduced Cx43 phosphorylation at S365 and increased it at S368; these changes were reversed by calcineurin inhibitors. Cx43-S368 phosphorylation was reversed by the protein kinase C inhibitor chelerythrine. Raised [Ca 2+ ] i also decreased I1 phosphorylation, also prevented by calcineurin inhibitors, to increase activity of the Ca 2+ -independent phosphatase, PPI. The PP1 inhibitor, tautomycin, prevented Cx43-365 dephosphorylation, Cx43-S368 phosphorylation and Gj reduction in raised [Ca 2+ ] i . PP2A had no role. Conduction velocity was reduced by raised [Ca 2+ ] i and reversed by calcineurin inhibitors. Reduced action potential conduction and Gj in raised [Ca 2+ ] are regulated by calcineurin-dependent Cx43-S365 phosphorylation, leading to Cx43-S368 dephosphorylation. The calcineurin action is indirect, via I1 dephosphorylation and subsequent activation of PP1.

  7. Photovoltaic Cells Improvised With Used Bipolar Junction Transistors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akintayo, J. A

    2002-01-01

    The understanding of the underlying principle that the solar cell consists of a p-n junction is exploited to adapt the basic NPN or PNP Bipolar Junction Transistors (BJT) to serve as solar cells. In this mode the in improvised solar cell have employed just the emitter and the base sections with an intact emitter/base junction as the active PN area. The improvised devices tested screened and sorted are wired up in strings, blocks and modules. The photovoltaic modules realised tested as close replica of solar cells with output voltage following insolation level. Further work need be done on the modules to make them generate usable levels of output voltage and current

  8. Highly doped layer for tunnel junctions in solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fetzer, Christopher M.

    2017-08-01

    A highly doped layer for interconnecting tunnel junctions in multijunction solar cells is presented. The highly doped layer is a delta doped layer in one or both layers of a tunnel diode junction used to connect two or more p-on-n or n-on-p solar cells in a multijunction solar cell. A delta doped layer is made by interrupting the epitaxial growth of one of the layers of the tunnel diode, depositing a delta dopant at a concentration substantially greater than the concentration used in growing the layer of the tunnel diode, and then continuing to epitaxially grow the remaining tunnel diode.

  9. Systematic optimization of quantum junction colloidal quantum dot solar cells

    KAUST Repository

    Liu, Huan

    2012-01-01

    The recently reported quantum junction architecture represents a promising approach to building a rectifying photovoltaic device that employs colloidal quantum dot layers on each side of the p-n junction. Here, we report an optimized quantum junction solar cell that leverages an improved aluminum zinc oxide electrode for a stable contact to the n-side of the quantum junction and silver doping of the p-layer that greatly enhances the photocurrent by expanding the depletion region in the n-side of the device. These improvements result in greater stability and a power conversion efficiency of 6.1 under AM1.5 simulated solar illumination. © 2012 American Institute of Physics.

  10. A cell junction pathology of neural stem cells leads to abnormal neurogenesis and hydrocephalus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esteban M Rodríguez

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Most cells of the developing mammalian brain derive from the ventricular (VZ and the subventricular (SVZ zones. The VZ is formed by the multipotent radial glia/neural stem cells (NSCs while the SVZ harbors the rapidly proliferative neural precursor cells (NPCs. Evidence from human and animal models indicates that the common history of hydrocephalus and brain maldevelopment starts early in embryonic life with disruption of the VZ and SVZ. We propose that a "cell junction pathology" involving adherent and gap junctions is a final common outcome of a wide range of gene mutations resulting in proteins abnormally expressed by the VZ cells undergoing disruption. Disruption of the VZ during fetal development implies the loss of NSCs whereas VZ disruption during the perinatal period implies the loss of ependyma. The process of disruption occurs in specific regions of the ventricular system and at specific stages of brain development. This explains why only certain brain structures have an abnormal development, which in turn results in a specific neurological impairment of the newborn. Disruption of the VZ of the Sylvian aqueduct (SA leads to aqueductal stenosis and hydrocephalus, while disruption of the VZ of telencephalon impairs neurogenesis. We are currently investigating whether grafting of NSCs/neurospheres from normal rats into the CSF of hydrocephalic mutants helps to diminish/repair the outcomes of VZ disruption.

  11. A novel role of dendritic gap junction and mechanisms underlying its interaction with thalamocortical conductance in fast spiking inhibitory neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun Qian-Quan

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Little is known about the roles of dendritic gap junctions (GJs of inhibitory interneurons in modulating temporal properties of sensory induced responses in sensory cortices. Electrophysiological dual patch-clamp recording and computational simulation methods were used in combination to examine a novel role of GJs in sensory mediated feed-forward inhibitory responses in barrel cortex layer IV and its underlying mechanisms. Results Under physiological conditions, excitatory post-junctional potentials (EPJPs interact with thalamocortical (TC inputs within an unprecedented few milliseconds (i.e. over 200 Hz to enhance the firing probability and synchrony of coupled fast-spiking (FS cells. Dendritic GJ coupling allows fourfold increase in synchrony and a significant enhancement in spike transmission efficacy in excitatory spiny stellate cells. The model revealed the following novel mechanisms: 1 rapid capacitive current (Icap underlies the activation of voltage-gated sodium channels; 2 there was less than 2 milliseconds in which the Icap underlying TC input and EPJP was coupled effectively; 3 cells with dendritic GJs had larger input conductance and smaller membrane response to weaker inputs; 4 synchrony in inhibitory networks by GJ coupling leads to reduced sporadic lateral inhibition and increased TC transmission efficacy. Conclusion Dendritic GJs of neocortical inhibitory networks can have very powerful effects in modulating the strength and the temporal properties of sensory induced feed-forward inhibitory and excitatory responses at a very high frequency band (>200 Hz. Rapid capacitive currents are identified as main mechanisms underlying interaction between two transient synaptic conductances.

  12. Nanostructured thin films for multibandgap silicon triple junction solar cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schropp, R.E.I.; Li, H. B. T.; Franken, R.H.; Rath, J.K.; van der Werf, C.H.M.; Schuttauf, J.A.; Stolk, R.L.

    2009-01-01

    A considerable improvement in performance has been achieved for multibandgap proto-Si/proto-SiGe/nc-Si:H triple junction n–i–p solar cells in which hot-wire chemical vapor deposition (HWCVD) is used to obtain the absorber layers of the bottom and the top cell. To achieve this, optimized Ag/ZnO

  13. Five-Junction Solar Cell Optimization Using Silvaco Atlas

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-09-01

    SOLAR CELL OPTIMIZATION USING SILVACO ATLAS by Raymond J. Kilway II September 2017 Thesis Advisor: Sherif Michael Second Reader: Matthew......12b. DISTRIBUTION CODE 13. ABSTRACT (maximum 200 words) Multi-junction solar cells have given rise to compact high-efficiency photovoltaic

  14. Organic tandem and multi-junction solar cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hadipour, Afshin; de Boer, Bert; Blom, Paul W. M.

    2008-01-01

    The emerging field of stacked layers (double- and even multi-layers) in organic photovoltaic cells is reviewed. Owing to the limited absorption width of organic molecules and polymers, only a small fraction of the solar flux can be harvested by a single-layer bulk hetero-junction photovoltaic cell.

  15. Keratitis-Ichthyosis-Deafness syndrome-associated Cx26 mutants produce nonfunctional gap junctions but hyperactive hemichannels when co-expressed with wild type Cx43

    Science.gov (United States)

    García, Isaac E.; Maripillán, Jaime; Jara, Oscar; Ceriani, Ricardo; Palacios-Muñoz, Angelina; Ramachandran, Jayalakshimi; Olivero, Pablo; Pérez-Acle, Tomás; González, Carlos; Sáez, Juan C.; Contreras, Jorge E.; Martínez, Agustín D.

    2015-01-01

    Mutations in Cx26 gene are found in most cases of human genetic deafness. Some mutations produce syndromic deafness associated with skin disorders, like Keratitis Ichthyosis Deafness syndrome (KID). Because in the human skin Cx26 is co-expressed with other connexins, like Cx43 and Cx30, and since KID syndrome is inherited as autosomal dominant condition, it is possible that KID mutations change the way Cx26 interacts with other co-expressed connexins. Indeed, some Cx26 syndromic mutations showed gap junction dominant negative effect when co-expressed with wild type connexins, including Cx26 and Cx43. The nature of these interactions and the consequences on hemichannels and gap junction channels functions remain unknown. In this study we demonstrate that syndromic mutations at the N-terminus segment of Cx26, change connexin oligomerization compatibility, allowing aberrant interactions with Cx43. Strikingly, heteromeric oligomer formed by Cx43/Cx26 (syndromic mutants) show exacerbated hemichannel activity, but nonfunctional gap junction channels; this also occurs for those Cx26 KID mutants that do not show functional homomeric hemichannels. Heterologous expression of these hyperactive heteromeric hemichannels increases cell membrane permeability, favoring ATP release and Ca2+ overload. The functional paradox produced by oligomerization of Cx43 and Cx26 KID mutants could underlie the severe syndromic phenotype in human skin. PMID:25625422

  16. Trichomonas vaginalis perturbs the junctional complex in epithelial cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    Trichomonas vaginalis, a protist parasite of the urogenital tract in humans, is the causative agent of trichomonosis,which in recent years have been associated with the cervical cancer development. In the present study we analyzed the modifications at the junctional complex level of Caco-2 cells after interaction with two isolates of T. vaginalis and the influence of the iron concentration present in the parasite's culture medium on the interaction effects. Our results show that T. vaginalis adheres to the epithelial cell causing alterations in the junctional complex, such as: (a) a decrease in transepithelial electrical resistance; (b) alteration in the pattern of junctional complex proteins distribution as obseryed for E-cadherin, occludin and ZO-1; and (c) enlargement of the spaces between epithelial cells. These effects were dependent on (a) the degree of the parasite virulence isolate, (b) the iron concentration in the culture medium, and (c) the expression of adhesin proteins on the parasite surface.

  17. First-principles spin-transfer torque in CuMnAs |GaP |CuMnAs junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamenova, Maria; Mohebbi, Razie; Seyed-Yazdi, Jamileh; Rungger, Ivan; Sanvito, Stefano

    2017-02-01

    We demonstrate that an all-antiferromagnetic tunnel junction with current perpendicular to the plane geometry can be used as an efficient spintronic device with potential high-frequency operation. By using state-of-the-art density functional theory combined with quantum transport, we show that the Néel vector of the electrodes can be manipulated by spin-transfer torque. This is staggered over the two different magnetic sublattices and can generate dynamics and switching. At the same time the different magnetization states of the junction can be read by standard tunneling magnetoresistance. Calculations are performed for CuMnAs |GaP |CuMnAs junctions with different surface terminations between the antiferromagnetic CuMnAs electrodes and the insulating GaP spacer. We find that the torque remains staggered regardless of the termination, while the magnetoresistance depends on the microscopic details of the interface.

  18. Computer analysis of microcrystalline silicon hetero-junction solar cell with lumerical FDTD/DEVICE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riaz, Muhammad; Earles, S. K.; Kadhim, Ahmed; Azzahrani, Ahmad

    The computer analysis of tandem solar cell, c-Si/a-Si:H/μc-SiGe, is studied within Lumerical FDTD/Device 4.6. The optical characterization is performed in FDTD and then total generation rate is transported into DEVICE for electrical characterization. The electrical characterization of the solar cell is carried out in DEVICE. The design is implemented by staking three sub cells with band gap of 1.12eV, 1.50eV and 1.70eV, respectively. First, single junction solar cell with both a-Si and μc-SiGe absorbing layers are designed and compared. The thickness for both layers are kept the same. In a single junction, solar cell with a-Si absorbing layer, the fill factor and the efficiency are noticed as FF = 78.98%, and η = 6.03%. For μc-SiGe absorbing layer, the efficiency and fill factor are increased as η = 7.06% and FF = 84.27%, respectively. Second, for tandem thin film solar cell c-Si/a-Si:H/μc-SiGe, the fill factor FF = 81.91% and efficiency η = 9.84% have been noticed. The maximum efficiency for both single junction thin film solar cell c-Si/μc-SiGe and tandem solar cell c-Si/a-Si:H/μc-SiGe are improved with check board surface design for light trapping.

  19. Gap junctional communication modulates gene transcription by altering the recruitment of Sp1 and Sp3 to connexin-response elements in osteoblast promoters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stains, Joseph P.; Lecanda, Fernando; Screen, Joanne; Towler, Dwight A.; Civitelli, Roberto

    2003-01-01

    Loss-of-function mutations of gap junction proteins, connexins, represent a mechanism of disease in a variety of tissues. We have shown that recessive (gene deletion) or dominant (connexin45 overexpression) disruption of connexin43 function results in osteoblast dysfunction and abnormal expression of osteoblast genes, including down-regulation of osteocalcin transcription. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms of gap junction-sensitive transcriptional regulation, we systematically analyzed the rat osteocalcin promoter for sensitivity to gap junctional intercellular communication. We identified an Sp1/Sp3 containing complex that assembles on a minimal element in the -70 to -57 region of the osteocalcin promoter in a gap junction-dependent manner. This CT-rich connexin-response element is necessary and sufficient to confer gap junction sensitivity to the osteocalcin proximal promoter. Repression of osteocalcin transcription occurs as a result of displacement of the stimulatory Sp1 by the inhibitory Sp3 on the promoter when gap junctional communication is perturbed. Modulation of Sp1/Sp3 recruitment also occurs on the collagen Ialpha1 promoter and translates into gap junction-sensitive transcriptional control of collagen Ialpha1 gene expression. Thus, regulation of Sp1/Sp3 recruitment to the promoter may represent a potential general mechanism for transcriptional control of target genes by signals passing through gap junctions.

  20. Proinflammatory cytokines downregulate connexin 43-gap junctions via the ubiquitin-proteasome system in rat spinal astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Fang Fang; Morioka, Norimitsu; Kitamura, Tomoya; Hisaoka-Nakashima, Kazue; Nakata, Yoshihiro

    2015-09-04

    Astrocytic gap junctions formed by connexin 43 (Cx43) are crucial for intercellular communication between spinal cord astrocytes. Various neurological disorders are associated with dysfunctional Cx43-gap junctions. However, the mechanism modulating Cx43-gap junctions in spinal astrocytes under pathological conditions is not entirely clear. A previous study showed that treatment of spinal astrocytes in culture with pro-inflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interferon-γ (IFN-γ) decreased both Cx43 expression and gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) via a c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK)-dependent pathway. The current study further elaborates the intracellular mechanism that decreases Cx43 under an inflammatory condition. Cycloheximide chase analysis revealed that TNF-α (10 ng/ml) alone or in combination with IFN-γ (5 ng/ml) accelerated the degradation of Cx43 protein in cultured spinal astrocytes. The reduction of both Cx43 expression and GJIC induced by a mixture of TNF-α and IFN-γ were blocked by pretreatment with proteasome inhibitors MG132 (0.5 μM) and epoxomicin (25 nM), a mixture of TNF-α and IFN-γ significantly increased proteasome activity and Cx43 ubiquitination. In addition, TNF-α and IFN-γ-induced activation of ubiquitin-proteasome systems was prevented by SP600125, a JNK inhibitor. Together, these results indicate that a JNK-dependent ubiquitin-proteasome system is induced under an inflammatory condition that disrupts astrocytic gap junction expression and function, leading to astrocytic dysfunction and the maintenance of the neuroinflammatory state. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Histone deacetylase inhibition reduces cardiac Connexin43 expression and gap junction communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qin eXu

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Histone deactylase (HDAC inhibitors are being investigated as novel therapies for cancer, inflammation, neurodegeneration, and heart failure. The effects of HDAC inhibitors on the functional expression of cardiac gap junctions (GJ are essentially unknown. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of trichostatin A (TSA and vorinostat (VOR on functional GJ expression in ventricular cardiomyocytes. The effects of HDAC inhibition on connexin43 (Cx43 expression and functional GJ assembly were examined in primary cultured neonatal mouse ventricular myocytes. TSA and VOR reduced Cx43 mRNA, protein expression, and immunolocalized Cx43 GJ plaque area within ventricular myocyte monolayer cultures in a dose-dependent manner. Chromatin-immunoprecipitation experiments revealed altered protein interactions with the Cx43 promoter. VOR also altered the phosphorylation state of several key regulatory Cx43 phospho-serine sites. Patch clamp analysis revealed reduced electrical coupling between isolated ventricular myocyte pairs, altered transjunctional voltage-dependent inactivation kinetics, and steady state junctional conductance inactivation and recovery relationships. Single GJ channel conductance was reduced to 54 pS only by maximum inhibitory doses of TSA (>= 100 nM. These two hydroxamate pan-HDAC inhibitors exert multiple levels of regulation on ventricular GJ communication by altering Cx43 expression, GJ area, post-translational modifications (e.g. phosphorylation, acetylation, gating, and channel conductance. Although a 50% downregulation of Cx43 GJ communication alone may not be sufficient to slow ventricular conduction or induce arrhythmias, the development of class-selective HDAC inhibitors may help avoid the potential negative cardiovascular effects of pan-HDACI.

  2. Evolution of Microbial Quorum Sensing to Human Global Quorum Sensing: An Insight into How Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication Might Be Linked to the Global Metabolic Disease Crisis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trosko, James E

    2016-06-15

    The first anaerobic organism extracted energy for survival and reproduction from its source of nutrients, with the genetic means to ensure protection of its individual genome but also its species survival. While it had a means to communicate with its community via simple secreted molecules ("quorum sensing"), the eventual shift to an aerobic environment led to multi-cellular metazoan organisms, with evolutionary-selected genes to form extracellular matrices, stem cells, stem cell niches, and a family of gap junction or "connexin" genes. These germinal and somatic stem cells responded to extracellular signals that triggered intra-cellular signaling to regulate specific genes out of the total genome. These extra-cellular induced intra-cellular signals also modulated gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in order to regulate the new cellular functions of symmetrical and asymmetrical cell division, cell differentiation, modes of cell death, and senescence. Within the hierarchical and cybernetic concepts, differentiated by neurons organized in the brain of the Homo sapiens, the conscious mind led to language, abstract ideas, technology, myth-making, scientific reasoning, and moral decision-making, i.e., the creation of culture. Over thousands of years, this has created the current collision between biological and cultural evolution, leading to the global "metabolic disease" crisis.

  3. Evolution of Microbial Quorum Sensing to Human Global Quorum Sensing: An Insight into How Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication Might Be Linked to the Global Metabolic Disease Crisis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James E. Trosko

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The first anaerobic organism extracted energy for survival and reproduction from its source of nutrients, with the genetic means to ensure protection of its individual genome but also its species survival. While it had a means to communicate with its community via simple secreted molecules (“quorum sensing”, the eventual shift to an aerobic environment led to multi-cellular metazoan organisms, with evolutionary-selected genes to form extracellular matrices, stem cells, stem cell niches, and a family of gap junction or “connexin” genes. These germinal and somatic stem cells responded to extracellular signals that triggered intra-cellular signaling to regulate specific genes out of the total genome. These extra-cellular induced intra-cellular signals also modulated gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC in order to regulate the new cellular functions of symmetrical and asymmetrical cell division, cell differentiation, modes of cell death, and senescence. Within the hierarchical and cybernetic concepts, differentiated by neurons organized in the brain of the Homo sapiens, the conscious mind led to language, abstract ideas, technology, myth-making, scientific reasoning, and moral decision–making, i.e., the creation of culture. Over thousands of years, this has created the current collision between biological and cultural evolution, leading to the global “metabolic disease” crisis.

  4. Testicular cell junction: a novel target for male contraception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Nikki P Y; Wong, Elissa W P; Mruk, Dolores D; Cheng, C Yan

    2009-01-01

    Even though various contraceptive methods are widely available, the number of unwanted pregnancies is still on the rise in developing countries, pressurizing the already resource limited nations. One of the major underlying reasons is the lack of effective, low cost, and safe contraceptives for couples. During the past decade, some studies were performed using animal models to decipher if the Sertoli-germ cell junction in the testis is a target for male fertility regulation. Some of these study models were based on the use of hormones and/or chemicals to disrupt the hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular axis (e.g., androgen-based implants or pills) and others utilized a panel of chemical entities or synthetic peptides to perturb spermatogenesis either reversibly or non-reversibly. Among them, adjudin, a potential male contraceptive, is one of the compounds exerting its action on the unique adherens junctions, known as ectoplasmic specializations, in the testis. Since the testis is equipped with inter-connected cell junctions, an initial targeting of one junction type may affect the others and these accumulative effects could lead to spermatogenic arrest. This review attempts to cover an innovative theme on how male infertility can be achieved by inducing junction instability and defects in the testis, opening a new window of research for male contraceptive development. While it will still take much time and effort of intensive investigation before a product can reach the consumable market, these findings have provided hope for better family planning involving men.

  5. Solar cell junction temperature measurement of PV module

    KAUST Repository

    Huang, B.J.; Yang, P.E.; Lin, Y.P.; Lin, B.Y.; Chen, H.J.; Lai, R.C.; Cheng, J.S.

    2011-01-01

    The present study develops a simple non-destructive method to measure the solar cell junction temperature of PV module. The PV module was put in the environmental chamber with precise temperature control to keep the solar PV module as well

  6. Quantum-Tuned Two-Junction Solar Cells

    KAUST Repository

    Wang, Xihua

    2011-01-01

    We report quantum-size-effect tuned tandem solar cells. Our two-junction photovoltaic devices employ light-absorbing material of a single composition and use two rationally-selected nanoparticle sizes to harvest the sun’s broad spectrum.

  7. Effects of maturation-inducing hormone on heterologous gap junctional coupling in ovarian follicles of Atlantic croaker

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshizaki, G.; Patino, R.; Thomas, P.; Bolamba, D.; Chang, Xiaotian

    2001-01-01

    A previous ultrastructural study of heterologous (granulosa cell-oocyte) gap junction (GJ) contacts in ovarian follicles of Atlantic croaker suggested that these contacts disappear late during the process of resumption of oocyte meiosis. This observation suggested that, unlike scenarios proposed for a number of other species, uncoupling of GJ is not necessary for the onset of meiotic resumption in croaker follicles. However, the functionality of heterologous GJ contacts and the temporal association between maturation-inducing hormone (MIH)-induced changes in heterologous coupling and resumption of oocyte meiosis have not been examined in Atlantic croaker. These questions were addressed with a cell-cell coupling assay that is based on the transfer of a GJ marker, Lucifer Yellow, from oocytes to granulosa cells. Follicle-enclosed oocytes injected with Lucifer Yellow allowed transfer of the dye into the follicle cell layer, thus confirming that there is functional heterologous coupling between the oocyte and the granulosa cells. Dye transfer was observed in vitellogenic, full-grown/maturation-incompetent, and full-grown /maturation-competent follicles. Treatment of maturation-competent follicles with MIH caused a time-dependent decline in the number of follicles transferring dye. However, although GJ uncoupling in some of the follicles was observed before germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD, index of meiotic resumption), about 50% of the follicles maintained the ability to transfer dye even after GVBD had occurred. Further, a known GJ inhibitor (phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate) blocked heterologous GJ within a time frame similar to that seen with MIH but without inducing any of the morphological changes (including GVBD) associated with follicular maturation. In conclusion, uncoupling of heterologous GJ seems insufficient and unnecessary for the onset of meiotic resumption in ovarian follicles of Atlantic croaker. ?? 2001 Elsevier Science.

  8. Tandem junction amorphous semiconductor photovoltaic cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalal, Vikram L.

    1983-01-01

    A photovoltaic stack comprising at least two p.sup.+ i n.sup.+ cells in optical series, said cells separated by a transparent ohmic contact layer(s), provides a long optical path for the absorption of photons while preserving the advantageous field-enhanced minority carrier collection arrangement characteristic of p.sup.+ i n.sup.+ cells.

  9. Jump in current at the gap voltage in a superconducting junction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coombes, J.M.; Carbotte, J.P.

    1986-01-01

    For many materials not previously considered, we have calculated the jump, at the gap voltage, in the quasiparticle current of a tunnel junction. An empirical relationship between the jump and the effective electron-phonon coupling λ-μ/sup */ previously established is confirmed. Further, a new and equally as accurate correlation is found with the strong coupling index T/sub c//ω/sub ln/, where T/sub c/ is the critical temperature and ω/sub ln/ a specific characteristic phonon energy. A simple formula for the jump which includes a strong-coupling correction is derived and found to fit the observed correlation well. Finally, we study the effect on the jump of unusual values of Coulomb pseudopotential μ/sup */. Also a δ-function electron-phonon spectral density α 2 F(ω) is used to help in the understanding of the range of values that is possible for the jump when α 2 F(ω) is not restricted to realistic shapes

  10. On the role of the gap junction protein Cx43 (GJA1 in human cardiac malformations with Fallot-pathology. a study on paediatric cardiac specimen.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aida Salameh

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Gap junction channels are involved in growth and differentiation. Therefore, we wanted to elucidate if the main cardiac gap junction protein connexin43 (GJA1 is altered in patients with Tetralogy of Fallot or double-outlet right ventricle of Fallot-type (62 patients referred to as Fallot compared to other cardiac anomalies (21 patients referred to as non-Fallot. Patients were divided into three age groups: 0-2years, 2-12years and >12years. Myocardial tissue samples were collected during corrective surgery and analysis of cell morphology, GJA1- and N-cadherin (CDH2-distribution, as well as GJA1 protein- and mRNA-expression was carried out. Moreover, GJA1-gene analysis of 16 patients and 20 healthy subjects was performed. RESULTS: Myocardial cell length and width were significantly increased in the oldest age group compared to the younger ones. GJA1 distribution changed significantly during maturation with the ratio of polar/lateral GJA1 increasing from 2.93±0.68 to 8.52±1.41. While in 0-2years old patients ∼6% of the lateral GJA1 was co-localised with CDH2 this decreased with age. Furthermore, the changes in cell morphology and GJA1-distribution were not due to the heart defect itself but were significantly dependent on age. Total GJA1 protein expression decreased during growing-up, whereas GJA1-mRNA remained unchanged. Sequencing of the GJA1-gene revealed only few heterozygous single nucleotide polymorphisms within the Fallot and the healthy control group. CONCLUSION: During maturation significant changes in gap junction remodelling occur which might be necessary for the growing and developing heart. In our study point mutations within the Cx43-gene could not be identified as a cause of the development of TOF.

  11. Possible Mechanisms of Mercury Toxicity and Cancer Promotion: Involvement of Gap Junction Intercellular Communications and Inflammatory Cytokines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Zefferino

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available A number of observations indicate that heavy metals are able to alter cellular metabolic pathways through induction of a prooxidative state. Nevertheless, the outcome of heavy metal-mediated effects in the development of human diseases is debated and needs further insights. Cancer is a well-established DNA mutation-linked disease; however, epigenetic events are perhaps more important and harmful than genetic alterations. Unfortunately, we do not have reliable screening methods to assess/validate the epigenetic (promoter effects of a physical or a chemical agent. We propose a mechanism of action whereby mercury acts as a possible promoter carcinogen. In the present contribution, we resume our previous studies on mercury tested at concentrations comparable with its occurrence as environmental pollutant. It is shown that Hg(II elicits a prooxidative state in keratinocytes linked to inhibition of gap junction-mediated intercellular communication and proinflammatory cytokine production. These combined effects may on one hand isolate cells from tissue-specific homeostasis promoting their proliferation and on the other hand tamper the immune system defense/surveillance checkmating the whole organism. Since Hg(II is not a mutagenic/genotoxic compound directly affecting gene expression, in a broader sense, mercury might be an example of an epigenetic tumor promoter or, further expanding this concept, a “metagenetic” effector.

  12. Mono-Heteromeric Configurations of Gap Junction Channels Formed by Connexin43 and Connexin45 Reduce Unitary Conductance and Determine both Voltage Gating and Metabolic Flux Asymmetry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guoqiang Zhong

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available In cardiac tissues, the expression of multiple connexins (Cx40, Cx43, Cx45, and Cx30.2 is a requirement for proper development and function. Gap junctions formed by these connexins have distinct permeability and gating mechanisms. Since a single cell can express more than one connexin isoform, the formation of hetero-multimeric gap junction channels provides a tissue with an enormous repertoire of combinations to modulate intercellular communication. To study further the perm-selectivity and gating properties of channels containing Cx43 and Cx45, we studied two monoheteromeric combinations in which a HeLa cell co-transfected with Cx43 and Cx45 was paired with a cell expressing only one of these connexins. Macroscopic measurements of total conductance between cell pairs indicated a drastic reduction in total conductance for mono-heteromeric channels. In terms of Vj dependent gating, Cx43 homomeric connexons facing heteromeric connexons only responded weakly to voltage negativity. Cx45 homomeric connexons exhibited no change in Vj gating when facing heteromeric connexons. The distributions of unitary conductances (γj for both mono-heteromeric channels were smaller than predicted, and both showed low permeability to the fluorescent dyes Lucifer yellow and Rhodamine123. For both mono-heteromeric channels, we observed flux asymmetry regardless of dye charge: flux was higher in the direction of the heteromeric connexon for MhetCx45 and in the direction of the homomeric Cx43 connexon for MhetCx43. Thus, our data suggest that co-expression of Cx45 and Cx43 induces the formation of heteromeric connexons with greatly reduced permeability and unitary conductance. Furthermore, it increases the asymmetry for voltage gating for opposing connexons, and it favors asymmetric flux of molecules across the junction that depends primarily on the size (not the charge of the crossing molecules.

  13. Mono-Heteromeric Configurations of Gap Junction Channels Formed by Connexin43 and Connexin45 Reduce Unitary Conductance and Determine both Voltage Gating and Metabolic Flux Asymmetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Guoqiang; Akoum, Nazem; Appadurai, Daniel A.; Hayrapetyan, Volodya; Ahmed, Osman; Martinez, Agustin D.; Beyer, Eric C.; Moreno, Alonso P.

    2017-01-01

    In cardiac tissues, the expression of multiple connexins (Cx40, Cx43, Cx45, and Cx30.2) is a requirement for proper development and function. Gap junctions formed by these connexins have distinct permeability and gating mechanisms. Since a single cell can express more than one connexin isoform, the formation of hetero-multimeric gap junction channels provides a tissue with an enormous repertoire of combinations to modulate intercellular communication. To study further the perm-selectivity and gating properties of channels containing Cx43 and Cx45, we studied two monoheteromeric combinations in which a HeLa cell co-transfected with Cx43 and Cx45 was paired with a cell expressing only one of these connexins. Macroscopic measurements of total conductance between cell pairs indicated a drastic reduction in total conductance for mono-heteromeric channels. In terms of Vj dependent gating, Cx43 homomeric connexons facing heteromeric connexons only responded weakly to voltage negativity. Cx45 homomeric connexons exhibited no change in Vj gating when facing heteromeric connexons. The distributions of unitary conductances (γj) for both mono-heteromeric channels were smaller than predicted, and both showed low permeability to the fluorescent dyes Lucifer yellow and Rhodamine123. For both mono-heteromeric channels, we observed flux asymmetry regardless of dye charge: flux was higher in the direction of the heteromeric connexon for MhetCx45 and in the direction of the homomeric Cx43 connexon for MhetCx43. Thus, our data suggest that co-expression of Cx45 and Cx43 induces the formation of heteromeric connexons with greatly reduced permeability and unitary conductance. Furthermore, it increases the asymmetry for voltage gating for opposing connexons, and it favors asymmetric flux of molecules across the junction that depends primarily on the size (not the charge) of the crossing molecules. PMID:28611680

  14. Diabetes Increases Cryoinjury Size with Associated Effects on Cx43 Gap Junction Function and Phosphorylation in the Mouse Heart.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palatinus, Joseph A; Gourdie, Robert G

    2016-01-01

    Diabetic patients develop larger myocardial infarctions and have an increased risk of death following a heart attack. The poor response to myocardial injury in the diabetic heart is likely related to the many metabolic derangements from diabetes that create a poor substrate in general for wound healing, response to injury and infection. Studies in rodents have implicated a role for the gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) in regulating the injury response in diabetic skin wounds. In this study, we sought to determine whether diabetes alters Cx43 molecular interactions or intracellular communication in the cryoinjured STZ type I diabetic mouse heart. We found that epicardial cryoinjury size is increased in diabetic mice and this increase is prevented by preinjury insulin administration. Consistent with these findings, we found that intercellular coupling via gap junctions is decreased after insulin administration in diabetic and nondiabetic mice. This decrease in coupling is associated with a concomitant increase in phosphorylation of Cx43 at serine 368, a residue known to decrease channel conductance. Taken together, our results suggest that insulin regulates both gap junction-mediated intercellular communication and injury propagation in the mouse heart.

  15. Junction Transport in Epitaxial Film Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells: Preprint

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Young, D. L.; Li, J. V.; Teplin, C. W.; Stradins, P.; Branz, H. M.

    2011-07-01

    We report our progress toward low-temperature HWCVD epitaxial film silicon solar cells on inexpensive seed layers, with a focus on the junction transport physics exhibited by our devices. Heterojunctions of i/p hydrogenated amorphous Si (a-Si) on our n-type epitaxial crystal Si on n++ Si wafers show space-charge-region recombination, tunneling or diffusive transport depending on both epitaxial Si quality and the applied forward voltage.

  16. Effect of solar-cell junction geometry on open-circuit voltage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weizer, V. G.; Godlewski, M. P.

    1985-01-01

    Simple analytical models have been found that adequately describe the voltage behavior of both the stripe junction and dot junction grating cells as a function of junction area. While the voltage in the former case is found to be insensitive to junction area reduction, significant voltage increases are shown to be possible for the dot junction cell. With regard to cells in which the junction area has been increased in a quest for better performance, it was found that (1) texturation does not affect the average saturation current density J0, indicating that the texturation process is equivalent to a simple extension of junction area by a factor of square root of 3 and (2) the vertical junction cell geometry produces a sizable decrease in J0 that, unfortunately, is more than offset by the effects of attendant areal increases.

  17. GAP junctional intercellular communication confers an enhanced bystander effect as well as a protective effect in HSV-TK/gancyclovir mediated cytotoxicity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wygoda, Marc R.; Rehemtulla, Alnawaz; Davis, Mary A.; Lawrence, Theodore S.

    1996-01-01

    Purpose/Objective: The 'Bystander Effect' is the phenomenon by which cells which are not transduced with the Herpes Simplex Virus - Thymidine Kinase (HSV-TK) gene are killed by the guanosine analog Gancyclovir (GCV) when they are nearby HSV-TK positive cells. Since currently available gene transfer technologies have a low efficiency (typically less than 10% of cells are transduced), a better understanding of the mechanism underlying the bystander effect is crucial for the success of the HSV-TK/GCV enzyme prodrug gene therapy approach. Gap junctions, which are specialized cell membrane channels allowing the passage of molecules < 1000 daltons in size directly from cell to cell, have been proposed as a possible mediator of the bystander effect. In particular, gap junctions could permit the transfer of toxic metabolites from the HSV-TK positive cells to the bystander cells. Our aim was to assess the role of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in the bystander effect. Materials and Methods: Co-culture of an HSV-TK transduced rat liver epithelial cell line (WB-TK), with either its communication competent parental cell line (WB), or an isogenic cell line differing by its communication incompetence (aB1). The ratios of effector cells (WB-TK) to bystander cells (WB or aB1), were (100(0)), (50(50)), (5(95)), or(0(100)) . These various mixed populations were exposed for 24 hours to 10μM GCV and thereafter placed at clonal density into selective media, allowing for growth of either the bystander (TK negative) cells or the effector (TK-positive) cells. Results: 1) When the effector/bystander ratio was (50(50)) the surviving fraction of the bystander cells was 3.5% and 37% for the WB and aB1, respectively. When the effector/bystander ratio was (5(95)), the surviving fraction was 51% and 65% for the WB and aB1, respectively. Either cell line (WB or aB1) cultured alone was unaffected by GCV. These results demonstrate that the bystander effect is much higher when

  18. Antireflection coating design for series interconnected multi-junction solar cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aiken, Daniel J.

    1999-01-01

    AR coating design for multi-junction solar cells can be more challenging than in the single junction case. Reasons for this are discussed. Analytical expressions used to optimize AR coatings for single junction solar cells are extended for use in monolithic, series interconnected multi-junction solar cell AR coating design. The result is an analytical expression which relates the solar cell performance (through J(sub SC)) directly to the AR coating design through the device reflectance. It is also illustrated how AR coating design can be used to provide an additional degree of freedom for current matching multi-junction devices

  19. Oxaliplatin-induced neurotoxicity is mediated through gap junction channels and hemichannels and can be prevented by octanol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kagiava, Alexia; Theophilidis, George; Sargiannidou, Irene; Kyriacou, Kyriacos; Kleopa, Kleopas A

    2015-10-01

    Oxaliplatin-induced neurotoxicity (OIN) is a common complication of chemotherapy without effective treatment. In order to clarify the mechanisms of both acute and chronic OIN, we used an ex-vivo mouse sciatic nerve model. Exposure to 25 μM oxaliplatin caused a marked prolongation in the duration of the nerve evoked compound action potential (CAP) by nearly 1200% within 300 min while amplitude remained constant for over 20 h. This oxaliplatin effect was almost completely reversed by the gap junction (GJ) inhibitor octanol in a concentration-dependent manner. Further GJ blockers showed similar effects although with a narrower therapeutic window. To clarify the target molecule we studied sciatic nerves from connexin32 (Cx32) and Cx29 knockout (KO) mice. The oxaliplatin effect and neuroprotection by octanol partially persisted in Cx29 better than in Cx32 KO nerves, suggesting that oxaliplatin affects both, but Cx32 GJ channels more than Cx29 hemichannels. Oxaliplatin also accelerated neurobiotin uptake in HeLa cells expressing the human ortholog of Cx29, Cx31.3, as well as dye transfer between cells expressing the human Cx32, and this effect was blocked by octanol. Oxaliplatin caused no morphological changes initially (up to 3 h of exposure), but prolonged nerve exposure caused juxtaparonodal axonal edema, which was prevented by octanol. Our study indicates that oxaliplatin causes forced opening of Cx32 channels and Cx29 hemichannels in peripheral myelinated fibers leading to disruption of axonal K(+) homeostasis. The GJ blocker octanol prevents OIN at very low concentrations and should be further studied as a neuroprotectant. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Cell membrane and cell junctions in differentiation of preimplanted mouse embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Izquierdo, L; Fernández, S; López, T

    1976-12-01

    Cell membrane and cell junctions in differentiation of preimplanted mouse embryos, (membrana celular y uniones celulares en la diferenciación del embrión de ratón antes de la implantación). Arch. Biol. Med. Exper. 10: 130-134, 1976. The development of cell junctions that seal the peripheral blastomeres could be a decisive step in the differentiation of morulae into blastocysts. The appearance of these junctions is studied by electron microscopy of late morulae and initial blastocysts. Zonulae occludentes as well as impermeability to lanthanum emulsion precedes the appearance of the blastocel and hence might be considered as one of its necessary causes.

  1. High performance as-grown and annealed high band gap tunnel junctions: Te behavior at the interface

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bedair, S. M., E-mail: bedair@ncsu.edu; Harmon, Jeffrey L.; Carlin, C. Zachary; Hashem Sayed, Islam E.; Colter, P. C. [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695 (United States)

    2016-05-16

    The performance of n{sup +}-InGaP(Te)/p{sup +}-AlGaAs(C) high band gap tunnel junctions (TJ) is critical for achieving high efficiency in multijunction photovoltaics. Several limitations for as grown and annealed TJ can be attributed to the Te doping of InGaP and its behavior at the junction interface. Te atoms in InGaP tend to get attached at step edges, resulting in a Te memory effect. In this work, we use the peak tunneling current (J{sub pk}) in this TJ as a diagnostic tool to study the behavior of the Te dopant at the TJ interface. Additionally, we used our understanding of Te behavior at the interface, guided by device modeling, to modify the Te source shut-off procedure and the growth rate. These modifications lead to a record performance for both the as-grown (2000 A/cm{sup 2}) and annealed (1000 A/cm{sup 2}) high band gap tunnel junction.

  2. Note: Photoluminescence measurement system for multi-junction solar cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trespidi, F; Malchiodi, A; Farina, F

    2017-05-01

    We describe a photoluminescence spectroscopy system developed for studying phenomena of optical coupling in multiple-junction solar cells and processed/unprocessed wafers, under the high solar concentration levels typical of HCPV (High Concentration PhotoVoltaic) systems. The instrument operates at room temperature over two spectral ranges: 475 nm-1100 nm and 950 nm-1650 nm. Power densities exceeding 10 000 suns can be obtained on the sample. The system can host up to four compact focusable solid state laser sources, presently only three are mounted and operated at 450 nm, 520 nm, and 785 nm; they provide overlapped beams on the sample surface and can shine simultaneously the sample to study possible mutual interaction between the different junctions.

  3. Eight-logic memory cell based on multiferroic junctions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang Feng; Zhou, Y C; Tang, M H; Liu Fen; Ma Ying; Zheng, X J; Zhao, W F; Xu, H Y; Sun, Z H

    2009-01-01

    A model is proposed for a device combining a multiferroic tunnel junction with a magnetoelectric (ME) film in which the magnetic configuration is controlled by the electric field. Calculations embodying the Green's function approach show that the magnetic polarization can be switched on and off by an electric field in the ME film due to the effect of elastic coupling interaction. Using a model including the spin-filter effect and screening of polarization charges, we have produced eight logic states of tunnelling resistance in the tunnel junction and have obtained corresponding laws that control them. The results provide some insights into the realization of an eight-logic memory cell. (fast track communication)

  4. Back-contacted back-junction silicon solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mangersnes, Krister

    2010-10-15

    Conventional silicon solar cells have a front-side contacted emitter. Back-contacted back-junction (BC-BJ) silicon solar cells, on the other hand, have both the complete metallization and the active diffused regions of both polarities on the backside. World-record efficiencies have already been demonstrated for this type of cell design in production, both on cell and module level. However, the production of these cells is both complex and costly, and a further cost reduction in fabrication is needed to make electricity from BC-BJ silicon solar cells cost-competitive with electricity on the grid ('grid-parity'). During the work with this thesis, we have investigated several important issues regarding BC-BJ silicon solar cells. The aim has been to reduce production cost and complexity while at the same time maintaining, or increasing, the already high conversion efficiencies demonstrated elsewhere. This has been pursued through experimental work as well as through numerical simulations and modeling. Six papers are appended to this thesis, two of which are still under review in scientific journals. In addition, two patents have been filed based on the work presented herein. Experimentally, we have focused on investigating and optimizing single, central processing steps. A laser has been the key processing tool during most of the work. We have used the same laser both to structure the backside of the cell and to make holes in a double-layer of passivating amorphous silicon and silicon oxide, where the holes were opened with the aim of making local contact to the underlying silicon. The processes developed have the possibility of using a relatively cheap and industrially proven laser and obtain results better than most state-of-the-art laser technologies. During the work with the laser, we also developed a thermodynamic model that was able to predict the outcome from laser interaction with amorphous and crystalline silicon. Alongside the experimental work, we

  5. Changes of junctions of endothelial cells in coronary sclerosis: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li-Zi Zhang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Atherosclerosis, the major cause of cardiovascular diseases, has been a leading contributor to morbidity and mortality in the United States and it has been on the rise globally. Endothelial cell–cell junctions are critical for vascular integrity and maintenance of vascular function. Endothelial cell junctions dysfunction is the onset step of future coronary events and coronary artery disease. Keywords: Coronary atherosclerosis, Junctions, Endothelial cells

  6. Role of gap junctions and protein kinase A during the development of oocyte maturational competence in Ayu (Plecoglossus altivelis)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, Y.; Yoshizaki, G.; Takeuchi, T.; Soyano, K.; Patino, R.

    2008-01-01

    Meiotic resumption in teleost oocytes is induced by a maturation-inducing hormone (MIH). The sensitivity of oocytes to MIH, also known as oocyte maturational competence (OMC), is induced by LH via mechanisms that are not fully understood. A previous study of Ayu (Plecoglossus altivelis) showed the presence of functional heterologous gap junctions (GJs) between oocytes and their surrounding granulosa cells. The objectives of this study were to determine the role of ovarian GJs and of protein kinase A (PKA) during the acquisition of OMC. We examined the effects of the specific GJ inhibitor carbenoxolone (CBX) and 18??-glycyrrhetinic acid (??-GA) on the LH-(hCG)-dependent acquisition of OMC and on MIH-(17,20??-dihydroxy-4-pregnen-3-one)-dependent meiotic resumption; measured the cAMP content of ovarian follicles during the hCG-dependent acquisition of OMC; and determined the effects of PK activators and inhibitors on hCG-dependent OMC. Production of follicular cAMP increased during the hCG-dependent acquisition of OMC. Both GJ inhibitors and the PKA inhibitor H8-dihydrochloride, but not the PKC inhibitor GF109203X, suppressed the hCG-dependent acquisition of OMC in a dose-dependent manner. The PKA activator forskolin induced OMC with a similar potency to hCG. Unlike previous observations with teleosts where disruption of heterologous GJ either blocks or stimulates meiotic resumption, treatment with GJ inhibitors did not affect MIH-dependent meiotic resumption in maturationally competent follicles of Ayu. These observations suggest that ovarian GJs are essential for LH-dependent acquisition of OMC but not for MIH-dependent meiotic resumption, and that the stimulation of OMC by LH is mediated by cAMP-dependent PKA. They are also consistent with the view that a precise balance between GJ-mediated signals (positive or negative) and oocyte maturational readiness is required for hormonally regulated meiotic resumption. ?? 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Design and Simulation of InGaN p-n Junction Solar Cell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Mesrane

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The tunability of the InGaN band gap energy over a wide range provides a good spectral match to sunlight, making it a suitable material for photovoltaic solar cells. The main objective of this work is to design and simulate the optimal InGaN single-junction solar cell. For more accurate results and best configuration, the optical properties and the physical models such as the Fermi-Dirac statistics, Auger and Shockley-Read-Hall recombination, and the doping and temperature-dependent mobility model were taken into account in simulations. The single-junction In0.622Ga0.378N (Eg = 1.39 eV solar cell is the optimal structure found. It exhibits, under normalized conditions (AM1.5G, 0.1 W/cm2, and 300 K, the following electrical parameters: Jsc=32.6791 mA/cm2, Voc=0.94091 volts, FF = 86.2343%, and η=26.5056%. It was noticed that the minority carrier lifetime and the surface recombination velocity have an important effect on the solar cell performance. Furthermore, the investigation results show that the In0.622Ga0.378N solar cell efficiency was inversely proportional with the temperature.

  8. Performace of Dilute Nitride Triple Junction Space Solar Cell Grown by MBE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aho Arto

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Dilute nitride arsenide antimonide compounds offer widely tailorable band-gaps, ranging from 0.8 eV to 1.4 eV, for the development of lattice-matched multijunction solar cells with three or more junctions. Here we report on the performance of GaInP/GaAs/GaInNAsSb solar cell grown by molecular beam epitaxy. An efficiency of 27% under AM0 conditions is demonstrated. In addition, the cell was measured at different temperatures. The short circuit current density exhibited a temperature coefficient of 0.006 mA/cm2/°C while the corresponding slope for the open circuit voltage was −6.8 mV/°C. Further efficiency improvement, up to 32%, is projected by better current balancing and structural optimization.

  9. Gap junctions mediate large-scale Turing structures in a mean-field cortex driven by subcortical noise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steyn-Ross, Moira L.; Steyn-Ross, D. A.; Wilson, M. T.; Sleigh, J. W.

    2007-07-01

    One of the grand puzzles in neuroscience is establishing the link between cognition and the disparate patterns of spontaneous and task-induced brain activity that can be measured clinically using a wide range of detection modalities such as scalp electrodes and imaging tomography. High-level brain function is not a single-neuron property, yet emerges as a cooperative phenomenon of multiply-interacting populations of neurons. Therefore a fruitful modeling approach is to picture the cerebral cortex as a continuum characterized by parameters that have been averaged over a small volume of cortical tissue. Such mean-field cortical models have been used to investigate gross patterns of brain behavior such as anesthesia, the cycles of natural sleep, memory and erasure in slow-wave sleep, and epilepsy. There is persuasive and accumulating evidence that direct gap-junction connections between inhibitory neurons promote synchronous oscillatory behavior both locally and across distances of some centimeters, but, to date, continuum models have ignored gap-junction connectivity. In this paper we employ simple mean-field arguments to derive an expression for D2 , the diffusive coupling strength arising from gap-junction connections between inhibitory neurons. Using recent neurophysiological measurements reported by Fukuda [J. Neurosci. 26, 3434 (2006)], we estimate an upper limit of D2≈0.6cm2 . We apply a linear stability analysis to a standard mean-field cortical model, augmented with gap-junction diffusion, and find this value for the diffusive coupling strength to be close to the critical value required to destabilize the homogeneous steady state. Computer simulations demonstrate that larger values of D2 cause the noise-driven model cortex to spontaneously crystalize into random mazelike Turing structures: centimeter-scale spatial patterns in which regions of high-firing activity are intermixed with regions of low-firing activity. These structures are consistent with the

  10. Gap features of layered iron-selenium-tellurium compound below and above the superconducting transition temperature by break-junction spectroscopy combined with STS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekino, T.; Sugimoto, A.; Gabovich, A. M.

    2018-05-01

    We studied correlations between the superconducting gap features of Te-substituted FeSe observed by scanning tunnelling spectroscopy (STS) and break-junction tunnelling spectroscopy (BJTS). At bias voltages outside the superconducting gap-energy range, the broad gap structure exists, which becomes the normal-state gap above the critical temperature, T c. Such behaviour is consistent with the model of the partially gapped density-wave superconductor involving both superconducting gaps and pseudogaps, which has been applied by us earlier to high-Tc cuprates. The similarity suggests that the parent electronic spectrum features should have much in common for these classes of materials.

  11. Cell-cell junctions: a target of acoustic overstimulation in the sensory epithelium of the cochlea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zheng Guiliang

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Exposure to intense noise causes the excessive movement of the organ of Corti, stretching the organ and compromising sensory cell functions. We recently revealed changes in the transcriptional expression of multiple adhesion-related genes during the acute phases of cochlear damage, suggesting that the disruption of cell-cell junctions is an early event in the process of cochlear pathogenesis. However, the functional state of cell junctions in the sensory epithelium is not clear. Here, we employed graded dextran-FITC, a macromolecule tracer that is impermeable to the organ of Corti under physiological conditions, to evaluate the barrier function of cell junctions in normal and noise-traumatized cochlear sensory epithelia. Results Exposure to an impulse noise of 155 dB (peak sound pressure level caused a site-specific disruption in the intercellular junctions within the sensory epithelium of the chinchilla cochlea. The most vulnerable sites were the junctions among the Hensen cells and between the Hensen and Deiters cells within the outer zone of the sensory epithelium. The junction clefts that formed in the reticular lamina were permeable to 40 and 500 but not 2,000 kDa dextran-FITC macromolecules. Moreover, this study showed that the interruption of junction integrity occurred in the reticular lamina and also in the basilar membrane, a site that had been considered to be resistant to acoustic injury. Finally, our study revealed a general spatial correlation between the site of sensory cell damage and the site of junction disruption. However, the two events lacked a strict one-to-one correlation, suggesting that the disruption of cell-cell junctions is a contributing, but not the sole, factor for initiating acute sensory cell death. Conclusions Impulse noise causes the functional disruption of intercellular junctions in the sensory epithelium of the chinchilla cochlea. This disruption occurs at an early phase of cochlear

  12. Transparent Semiconductor-Superconductor Interface and Induced Gap in an Epitaxial Heterostructure Josephson Junction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kjaergaard, M.; Suominen, H. J.; Nowak, M.P.; Akhmerov, A.R.; Shabani, J.; Palmstrøm, C. J.; Nichele, F.; Marcus, C.M.

    2017-01-01

    Measurement of multiple Andreev Reflection (MAR) in a Josephson junction made from an InAs quantum well heterostructure with epitaxial aluminum is used to quantify a highly transparent effective semiconductor-superconductor interface with near-unity transmission. The observed temperature

  13. TCAD analysis of graphene silicon Schottky junction solar cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuang, Yawei; Liu, Yushen; Ma, Yulong; Xu, Jing; Yang, Xifeng; Feng, Jinfu

    2015-08-01

    The performance of graphene based Schottky junction solar cell on silicon substrate is studied theoretically by TCAD Silvaco tools. We calculate the current-voltage curves and internal quantum efficiency of this device at different conditions using tow dimensional model. The results show that the power conversion efficiency of Schottky solar cell dependents on the work function of graphene and the physical properties of silicon such as thickness and doping concentration. At higher concentration of 1e17cm-3 for n-type silicon, the dark current got a sharp rise compared with lower doping concentration which implies a convert of electron emission mechanism. The biggest fill factor got at higher phos doping predicts a new direction for higher performance graphene Schottky solar cell design.

  14. Fluxes of lactate into, from, and among gap junction-coupled astrocytes and their interaction with noradrenaline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leif eHertz

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Lactate is a versatile metabolite with important roles in modulation of brain glucose utilization rate (CMRglc, diagnosis of brain-injured patients, redox- and receptor-mediated signaling, memory, and alteration of gene transcription. Neurons and astrocytes release and accumulate lactate using equilibrative monocarboxylate transporters that carry out net transmembrane transport of lactate only until intra- and extracellular levels reach equilibrium. Astrocytes have much faster lactate uptake than neurons and shuttle more lactate among gap junction-coupled astrocytes than to nearby neurons. Lactate diffusion within syncytia can provide precursors for oxidative metabolism and glutamate synthesis and facilitate its release from endfeet to perivascular space to stimulate blood flow. Lactate efflux from brain during activation underlies the large underestimation of CMRglc with labeled glucose and fall in CMRO2/CMRglc ratio. Receptor-mediated effects of lactate on locus coeruleus neurons include noradrenaline release in cerebral cortex and c-AMP-mediated stimulation of astrocytic gap junctional coupling, thereby enhancing its dispersal and release from brain. Lactate transport is essential for its multifunctional roles.

  15. AlGaAs/InGaAlP tunnel junctions for multijunction solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    SHARPS,P.R.; LI,N.Y.; HILLS,J.S.; HOU,H.; CHANG,PING-CHIH; BACA,ALBERT G.

    2000-05-16

    Optimization of GaInP{sub 2}/GaAs dual and GaInP{sub 2}/GaAs/Ge triple junction cells, and development of future generation monolithic multi-junction cells will involve the development of suitable high bandgap tunnel junctions. There are three criteria that a tunnel junction must meet. First, the resistance of the junction must be kept low enough so that the series resistance of the overall device is not increased. For AMO, 1 sun operation, the tunnel junction resistance should be below 5 x 10{sup {minus}2} {Omega}-cm. Secondly, the peak current density for the tunnel junction must also be larger than the J{sub sc} of the cell so that the tunnel junction I-V curve does not have a deleterious effect on the I-V curve of the multi-junction device. Finally, the tunnel junction must be optically transparent, i.e., there must be a minimum of optical absorption of photons that will be collected by the underlying subcells. The paper reports the investigation of four high bandgap tunnel junctions grown by metal-organic chemical vapor deposition.

  16. Systematic optimization of quantum junction colloidal quantum dot solar cells

    KAUST Repository

    Liu, Huan; Zhitomirsky, David; Hoogland, Sjoerd; Tang, Jiang; Kramer, Illan J.; Ning, Zhijun; Sargent, Edward H.

    2012-01-01

    The recently reported quantum junction architecture represents a promising approach to building a rectifying photovoltaic device that employs colloidal quantum dot layers on each side of the p-n junction. Here, we report an optimized quantum

  17. Effect of junction quality on the performance of a silicon solar cell ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In this work, a modeling study of the effect of the junction quality on the performance of a silicon solar cell is presented. Based on a one dimensional modeling of the solar cell, the continuity equation of excess minority carriers is solved with boundary conditions taking into account the intrinsic junction recombination velocity ...

  18. Aligned fibers direct collective cell migration to engineer closing and nonclosing wound gaps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Puja; Ng, Colin; Jana, Aniket; Padhi, Abinash; Szymanski, Paige; Lee, Jerry S H; Behkam, Bahareh; Nain, Amrinder S

    2017-09-15

    Cell emergence onto damaged or organized fibrous extracellular matrix (ECM) is a crucial precursor to collective cell migration in wound closure and cancer metastasis, respectively. However, there is a fundamental gap in our quantitative understanding of the role of local ECM size and arrangement in cell emergence-based migration and local gap closure. Here, using ECM-mimicking nanofibers bridging cell monolayers, we describe a method to recapitulate and quantitatively describe these in vivo behaviors over multispatial (single cell to cell sheets) and temporal (minutes to weeks) scales. On fiber arrays with large interfiber spacing, cells emerge (invade) either singularly by breaking cell-cell junctions analogous to release of a stretched rubber band (recoil), or in groups of few cells (chains), whereas on closely spaced fibers, multiple chains emerge collectively. Advancing cells on fibers form cell streams, which support suspended cell sheets (SCS) of various sizes and curvatures. SCS converge to form local gaps that close based on both the gap size and shape. We document that cell stream spacing of 375 µm and larger hinders SCS advancement, thus providing abilities to engineer closing and nonclosing gaps. Altogether we highlight the importance of studying cell-fiber interactions and matrix structural remodeling in fundamental and translational cell biology. © 2017 Sharma et al. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). Two months after publication it is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  19. Modeling and simulation of a dual-junction CIGS solar cell using Silvaco ATLAS

    OpenAIRE

    Fotis, Konstantinos

    2012-01-01

    Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. The potential of designing a dual-junction Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) photovoltaic cell is investigated in this thesis. Research into implementing a dual-junction solar cell, using a CIGS bottom cell and different thin-film designs as a top cell, was conducted in order to increase the current record efficiency of 20.3% for a single CIGS cell. This was accomplished through modeling and simulation using Silvaco ATLASTM, an ad...

  20. Application of Stochastic Automata Networks for Creation of Continuous Time Markov Chain Models of Voltage Gating of Gap Junction Channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mindaugas Snipas

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The primary goal of this work was to study advantages of numerical methods used for the creation of continuous time Markov chain models (CTMC of voltage gating of gap junction (GJ channels composed of connexin protein. This task was accomplished by describing gating of GJs using the formalism of the stochastic automata networks (SANs, which allowed for very efficient building and storing of infinitesimal generator of the CTMC that allowed to produce matrices of the models containing a distinct block structure. All of that allowed us to develop efficient numerical methods for a steady-state solution of CTMC models. This allowed us to accelerate CPU time, which is necessary to solve CTMC models, ∼20 times.

  1. Application of Stochastic Automata Networks for Creation of Continuous Time Markov Chain Models of Voltage Gating of Gap Junction Channels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pranevicius, Henrikas; Pranevicius, Mindaugas; Pranevicius, Osvaldas; Bukauskas, Feliksas F.

    2015-01-01

    The primary goal of this work was to study advantages of numerical methods used for the creation of continuous time Markov chain models (CTMC) of voltage gating of gap junction (GJ) channels composed of connexin protein. This task was accomplished by describing gating of GJs using the formalism of the stochastic automata networks (SANs), which allowed for very efficient building and storing of infinitesimal generator of the CTMC that allowed to produce matrices of the models containing a distinct block structure. All of that allowed us to develop efficient numerical methods for a steady-state solution of CTMC models. This allowed us to accelerate CPU time, which is necessary to solve CTMC models, ∼20 times. PMID:25705700

  2. S-diclofenac Protects against Doxorubicin-Induced Cardiomyopathy in Mice via Ameliorating Cardiac Gap Junction Remodeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Huili; Zhang, Alian; Guo, Changfa; Shi, Chunzhi; Zhang, Yang; Liu, Qing; Sparatore, Anna; Wang, Changqian

    2011-01-01

    Hydrogen sulfide (H2S), as a novel gaseous mediator, plays important roles in mammalian cardiovascular tissues. In the present study, we investigated the cardioprotective effect of S-diclofenac (2-[(2,6-dichlorophenyl)amino] benzeneacetic acid 4-(3H-1,2,dithiol-3-thione-5-yl)phenyl ester), a novel H2S-releasing derivative of diclofenac, in a murine model of doxorubicin-induced cardiomyopathy. After a single dose injection of doxorubicin (15 mg/kg, i.p.), male C57BL/6J mice were given daily treatment of S-diclofenac (25 and 50 µmol/kg, i.p.), diclofenac (25 and 50 µmol/kg, i.p.), NaHS (50 µmol/kg, i.p.), or same volume of vehicle. The cardioprotective effect of S-diclofenac was observed after 14 days. It showed that S-diclofenac, but not diclofenac, dose-dependently inhibited the doxorubicin-induced downregulation of cardiac gap junction proteins (connexin 43 and connexin 45) and thus reversed the remodeling of gap junctions in hearts. It also dose-dependently suppressed doxorubicin-induced activation of JNK in hearts. Furthermore, S-diclofenac produced a dose-dependent anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative effect in this model. As a result, S-diclofenac significantly attenuated doxorubicin-related cardiac injury and cardiac dysfunction, and improved the survival rate of mice with doxorubicin-induced cardiomyopathy. These effects of S-diclofenac were mimicked in large part by NaHS. Therefore, we propose that H2S released from S-diclofenac in vivo contributes to the protective effect in doxorubicin-induced cardiomyopathy. These data also provide evidence for a critical role of H2S in the pathogenesis of doxorubicin-induced cardiomyopathy. PMID:22039489

  3. Sphingosine-1-Phosphate reduces ischemia/reperfusion injury by phosphorylating the gap junction protein Connexin43

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Morel, Sandrine; Christoffersen, Christina; Axelsen, Lene N

    2016-01-01

    recruitment seems only indirectly affected. Importantly, short-term S1P treatment at the onset of reperfusion was sufficient to reduce ischemia/reperfusion injury in isolated perfused hearts. Mechanistic in vitro and ex vivo studies revealed that 5 min of S1P treatment induced phosphorylation of the gap...

  4. Visualizing the effect of dynamin inhibition on annular gap vesicle formation and fission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nickel, Beth; Boller, Marie; Schneider, Kimberly; Shakespeare, Teresa; Gay, Vernon; Murray, Sandra A

    2013-06-15

    Although gap junction plaque assembly has been extensively studied, mechanisms involved in plaque disassembly are not well understood. Disassembly involves an internalization process in which annular gap junction vesicles are formed. These vesicles undergo fission, but the molecular machinery needed for these fissions has not been described. The mechanoenzyme dynamin has been previously demonstrated to play a role in gap junction plaque internalization. To investigate the role of dynamin in annular gap junction vesicle fission, immunocytochemical, time-lapse and transmission electron microscopy were used to analyze SW-13 adrenocortical cells in culture. Dynamin was demonstrated to colocalize with gap junction plaques and vesicles. Dynamin inhibition, by siRNA knockdown or treatment with the dynamin GTPase inhibitor dynasore, increased the number and size of gap junction 'buds' suspended from the gap junction plaques. Buds, in control populations, were frequently released to form annular gap junction vesicles. In dynamin-inhibited populations, the buds were larger and infrequently released and thus fewer annular gap junction vesicles were formed. In addition, the number of annular gap junction vesicle fissions per hour was reduced in the dynamin-inhibited populations. We believe this to be the first report addressing the details of annular gap junction vesicle fissions and demonstrating a role of dynamin in this process. This information is crucial for elucidating the relationship between gap junctions, membrane regulation and cell behavior.

  5. The nanostructure of myoendothelial junctions contributes to signal rectification between endothelial and vascular smooth muscle cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brasen, Jens Christian; Jacobsen, Jens Christian Brings; von Holstein-Rathlou, Niels-Henrik

    2012-01-01

    Micro-anatomical structures in tissues have potential physiological effects. In arteries and arterioles smooth muscle cells and endothelial cells are separated by the internal elastic lamina, but the two cell layers often make contact through micro protrusions called myoendothelial junctions. Cross...... types and the myoendothelial junction. The model is implemented as a 2D axi-symmetrical model and solved using the finite element method. We have simulated diffusion of Ca(2+) and IP(3) between the two cell types and we show that the micro-anatomical structure of the myoendothelial junction in itself...

  6. Epithelial cell-cell junctions and plasma membrane domains

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giepmans, Ben N. G.; van Ijzendoorn, Sven C. D.

    Epithelial cells form a barrier against the environment, but are also required for the regulated exchange of molecules between an organism and its surroundings. Epithelial cells are characterised by a remarkable polarization of their plasma membrane, evidenced by the appearance of structurally,

  7. Mechanically Stacked Dual-Junction and Triple-Junction III-V/Si-IBC Cells with Efficiencies Exceeding 31.5% and 35.4%: Preprint

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schnabel, Manuel [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Tamboli, Adele C [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Warren, Emily L [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Schulte-Huxel, Henning [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Klein, Talysa [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Van Hest, Marinus F [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Geisz, John F [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Stradins, Paul [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Steiner, Myles A [National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Rienaecker, Michael [Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH); Merkle, Agnes [Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH); Kajari-Schroeder, S. [Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH); Niepelt, Raphael [Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH); Schmidt, Jan [Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH); Leibniz Universitat Hannover; Brendel, Rolf [Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH); Leibniz Universitat Hannover; Peibst, Robby [Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH); Leibniz Universitat Hannover

    2017-10-02

    Despite steady advancements in the efficiency of crystalline Silicon (c-Si) photovoltaics (PV) within the last decades, the theoretical efficiency limit of 29.4 percent depicts an insurmountable barrier for silicon-based single-junction solar cells. Combining the Si cell with a second absorber material on top in a dual junction tandem or triple junction solar cell is an attractive option to surpass this limit significantly. We demonstrate a mechanically stacked GaInP/Si dual-junction cell with an in-house measured efficiency of 31.5 percent and a GaInP/GaAs/Si triple-junction cell with a certified efficiency of 35.4 percent.

  8. Schwann Cells in Neuromuscular Junction Formation and Maintenance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barik, Arnab; Li, Lei; Sathyamurthy, Anupama; Xiong, Wen-Cheng; Mei, Lin

    2016-09-21

    The neuromuscular junction (NMJ) is a tripartite synapse that is formed by motor nerve terminals, postjunctional muscle membranes, and terminal Schwann cells (TSCs) that cover the nerve-muscle contact. NMJ formation requires intimate communications among the three different components. Unlike nerve-muscle interaction, which has been well characterized, less is known about the role of SCs in NMJ formation and maintenance. We show that SCs in mice lead nerve terminals to prepatterned AChRs. Ablating SCs at E8.5 (i.e., prior nerve arrival at the clusters) had little effect on aneural AChR clusters at E13.5, suggesting that SCs may not be necessary for aneural clusters. SC ablation at E12.5, a time when phrenic nerves approach muscle fibers, resulted in smaller and fewer nerve-induced AChR clusters; however, SC ablation at E15.5 reduced AChR cluster size but had no effect on cluster density, suggesting that SCs are involved in AChR cluster maturation. Miniature endplate potential amplitude, but not frequency, was reduced when SCs were ablated at E15.5, suggesting that postsynaptic alterations may occur ahead of presynaptic deficits. Finally, ablation of SCs at P30, after NMJ maturation, led to NMJ fragmentation and neuromuscular transmission deficits. Miniature endplate potential amplitude was reduced 3 d after SC ablation, but both amplitude and frequency were reduced 6 d after. Together, these results indicate that SCs are not only required for NMJ formation, but also necessary for its maintenance; and postsynaptic function and structure appeared to be more sensitive to SC ablation. Neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) are critical for survival and daily functioning. Defects in NMJ formation during development or maintenance in adulthood result in debilitating neuromuscular disorders. The role of Schwann cells (SCs) in NMJ formation and maintenance was not well understood. We genetically ablated SCs during development and after NMJ formation to investigate the consequences

  9. Innovative architecture design for high performance organic and hybrid multi-junction solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ning; Spyropoulos, George D.; Brabec, Christoph J.

    2017-08-01

    The multi-junction concept is especially attractive for the photovoltaic (PV) research community owing to its potential to overcome the Schockley-Queisser limit of single-junction solar cells. Tremendous research interests are now focused on the development of high-performance absorbers and novel device architectures for emerging PV technologies, such as organic and perovskite PVs. It has been predicted that the multi-junction concept is able to boost the organic and perovskite PV technologies approaching the 20% and 30% benchmarks, respectively, showing a bright future of commercialization of the emerging PV technologies. In this contribution, we will demonstrate innovative architecture design for solution-processed, highly functional organic and hybrid multi-junction solar cells. A simple but elegant approach to fabricating organic and hybrid multi-junction solar cells will be introduced. By laminating single organic/hybrid solar cells together through an intermediate layer, the manufacturing cost and complexity of large-scale multi-junction solar cells can be significantly reduced. This smart approach to balancing the photocurrents as well as open circuit voltages in multi-junction solar cells will be demonstrated and discussed in detail.

  10. Neuropeptide Y, substance P, and human bone morphogenetic protein 2 stimulate human osteoblast osteogenic activity by enhancing gap junction intercellular communication

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ma, W.H.; Liu, Y.J.; Wang, W.; Zhang, Y.Z.

    2015-01-01

    Bone homeostasis seems to be controlled by delicate and subtle “cross talk” between the nervous system and “osteo-neuromediators” that control bone remodeling. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of interactions between neuropeptides and human bone morphogenetic protein 2 (hBMP2) on human osteoblasts. We also investigated the effects of neuropeptides and hBMP2 on gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC). Osteoblasts were treated with neuropeptide Y (NPY), substance P (SP), or hBMP2 at three concentrations. At various intervals after treatment, cell viability was measured by the MTT assay. In addition, cellular alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity and osteocalcin were determined by colorimetric assay and radioimmunoassay, respectively. The effects of NPY, SP and hBMP on GJIC were determined by laser scanning confocal microscopy. The viability of cells treated with neuropeptides and hBMP2 increased significantly in a time-dependent manner, but was inversely associated with the concentration of the treatments. ALP activity and osteocalcin were both reduced in osteoblasts exposed to the combination of neuropeptides and hBMP2. The GJIC of osteoblasts was significantly increased by the neuropeptides and hBMP2. These results suggest that osteoblast activity is increased by neuropeptides and hBMP2 through increased GJIC. Identification of the GJIC-mediated signal transduction capable of modulating the cellular activities of bone cells represents a novel approach to studying the biology of skeletal innervation

  11. Neuropeptide Y, substance P, and human bone morphogenetic protein 2 stimulate human osteoblast osteogenic activity by enhancing gap junction intercellular communication

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ma, W.H.; Liu, Y.J.; Wang, W.; Zhang, Y.Z. [The Third Hospital of Hebei Medical University, The Provincial Key Laboratory for Orthopedic Biomechanics of Hebei, Shijiazhuang, Hebei Province (China)

    2015-02-13

    Bone homeostasis seems to be controlled by delicate and subtle “cross talk” between the nervous system and “osteo-neuromediators” that control bone remodeling. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of interactions between neuropeptides and human bone morphogenetic protein 2 (hBMP2) on human osteoblasts. We also investigated the effects of neuropeptides and hBMP2 on gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC). Osteoblasts were treated with neuropeptide Y (NPY), substance P (SP), or hBMP2 at three concentrations. At various intervals after treatment, cell viability was measured by the MTT assay. In addition, cellular alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity and osteocalcin were determined by colorimetric assay and radioimmunoassay, respectively. The effects of NPY, SP and hBMP on GJIC were determined by laser scanning confocal microscopy. The viability of cells treated with neuropeptides and hBMP2 increased significantly in a time-dependent manner, but was inversely associated with the concentration of the treatments. ALP activity and osteocalcin were both reduced in osteoblasts exposed to the combination of neuropeptides and hBMP2. The GJIC of osteoblasts was significantly increased by the neuropeptides and hBMP2. These results suggest that osteoblast activity is increased by neuropeptides and hBMP2 through increased GJIC. Identification of the GJIC-mediated signal transduction capable of modulating the cellular activities of bone cells represents a novel approach to studying the biology of skeletal innervation.

  12. The role of apical cell-cell junctions and associated cytoskeleton in mechanotransduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sluysmans, Sophie; Vasileva, Ekaterina; Spadaro, Domenica; Shah, Jimit; Rouaud, Florian; Citi, Sandra

    2017-04-01

    Tissues of multicellular organisms are characterised by several types of specialised cell-cell junctions. In vertebrate epithelia and endothelia, tight and adherens junctions (AJ) play critical roles in barrier and adhesion functions, and are connected to the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons. The interaction between junctions and the cytoskeleton is crucial for tissue development and physiology, and is involved in the molecular mechanisms governing cell shape, motility, growth and signalling. The machineries which functionally connect tight and AJ to the cytoskeleton comprise proteins which either bind directly to cytoskeletal filaments, or function as adaptors for regulators of the assembly and function of the cytoskeleton. In the last two decades, specific cytoskeleton-associated junctional molecules have been implicated in mechanotransduction, revealing the existence of multimolecular complexes that can sense mechanical cues and translate them into adaptation to tensile forces and biochemical signals. Here, we summarise the current knowledge about the machineries that link tight and AJ to actin filaments and microtubules, and the molecular basis for mechanotransduction at epithelial and endothelial AJ. © 2017 Société Française des Microscopies and Société de Biologie Cellulaire de France. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. On the universality of the ''smile''-gap in the density of states of a chaotic Josephson junction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reutlinger, Johannes; Belzig, Wolfgang [University of Konstanz, Department of Physics (Germany); Nazarov, Yuli [Kavli Institute of Nanoscience Delft, Delft University of Technology, Delft (Netherlands); Glazman, Leonid [Department of Physics, Yale University, New Haven, CT (United States)

    2015-07-01

    The superconducting proximity effect strongly modifies the local density of states in chaotic Josephson junctions. Recently we found that besides the well-known minigap a secondary gap appears just below the superconducting gap edge Δ in the limit of a large Thouless energy E{sub Th} >or similar Δ. To check the universality of this novel gap phenomenon we study the effect of nonideal contacts and show that the ''smile''-gap crucially depends on the transmission eigenvalue distribution. In a next step we use the random matrix method to investigate the ''smile''-gap. This allows us to approach the statistics of Andreev levels, going beyond the quasiclassical Greens function method. It turns out that the hard gap edge softens similar to what is already known from the minigap.

  14. A thin-film silicon/silicon hetero-junction hybrid solar cell for photoelectrochemical water-reduction applications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vasudevan, R.A.; Thanawala, Z; Han, L.; Buijs, Thom; Tan, H.; Deligiannis, D.; Perez Rodriguez, P.; Digdaya, I.A.; Smith, W.A.; Zeman, M.; Smets, A.H.M.

    2016-01-01

    A hybrid tandem solar cell consisting of a thin-film, nanocrystalline silicon top junction and a siliconheterojunction bottom junction is proposed as a supporting solar cell for photoelectrochemical applications.Tunneling recombination junction engineering is shown to be an important consideration

  15. Performance of multi-junction cells due to illumination distribution across the cell surface

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schultz, R.D.; Vorster, F.J; Dyk, E.E van

    2012-01-01

    This paper addresses the influence of illumination distribution on the performance of a high concentration photovoltaic (HCPV) module. CPV systems comprise of optical elements as well as mechanical tracking to concentrate the solar flux onto the solar receiver as well as to keep the system on track with the sun. The performance of the subcells of the multi-junction concentrator cell depends on the optical alignment of the system. Raster scanning of the incident intensity in the optical plane of the receiver and corresponding I–V measurements were used to investigate the influence of illumination distribution on performance. The results show that the illumination distribution that differs between cells does affect the performance of the module. The performance of the subcells of the multi-junction concentrator cell also depends on the optical alignment of the system.

  16. Performance of multi-junction cells due to illumination distribution across the cell surface

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schultz, R.D., E-mail: s206029578@live.nmmu.ac.za [Nelson Mandela University, Physics Department, P.O. Box 77000, 6031, Port Elizabeth (South Africa); Vorster, F.J; Dyk, E.E van [Nelson Mandela University, Physics Department, P.O. Box 77000, 6031, Port Elizabeth (South Africa)

    2012-05-15

    This paper addresses the influence of illumination distribution on the performance of a high concentration photovoltaic (HCPV) module. CPV systems comprise of optical elements as well as mechanical tracking to concentrate the solar flux onto the solar receiver as well as to keep the system on track with the sun. The performance of the subcells of the multi-junction concentrator cell depends on the optical alignment of the system. Raster scanning of the incident intensity in the optical plane of the receiver and corresponding I-V measurements were used to investigate the influence of illumination distribution on performance. The results show that the illumination distribution that differs between cells does affect the performance of the module. The performance of the subcells of the multi-junction concentrator cell also depends on the optical alignment of the system.

  17. GaAs nanowire array solar cells with axial p-i-n junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Maoqing; Huang, Ningfeng; Cong, Sen; Chi, Chun-Yung; Seyedi, M Ashkan; Lin, Yen-Ting; Cao, Yu; Povinelli, Michelle L; Dapkus, P Daniel; Zhou, Chongwu

    2014-06-11

    Because of unique structural, optical, and electrical properties, solar cells based on semiconductor nanowires are a rapidly evolving scientific enterprise. Various approaches employing III-V nanowires have emerged, among which GaAs, especially, is under intense research and development. Most reported GaAs nanowire solar cells form p-n junctions in the radial direction; however, nanowires using axial junction may enable the attainment of high open circuit voltage (Voc) and integration into multijunction solar cells. Here, we report GaAs nanowire solar cells with axial p-i-n junctions that achieve 7.58% efficiency. Simulations show that axial junctions are more tolerant to doping variation than radial junctions and lead to higher Voc under certain conditions. We further study the effect of wire diameter and junction depth using electrical characterization and cathodoluminescence. The results show that large diameter and shallow junctions are essential for a high extraction efficiency. Our approach opens up great opportunity for future low-cost, high-efficiency photovoltaics.

  18. Long-range neural and gap junction protein-mediated cues control polarity during planarian regeneration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Morokuma, Junji; Oviedo, Nestor J.; Walentek, Peter; Kema, Ido P.; Gu, Man Bock; Ahn, Joo-Myung; Hwang, Jung Shan; Gojobori, Takashi; Levin, Michael

    2010-01-01

    Having the ability to coordinate the behavior of stem cells to induce regeneration of specific large-scale structures would have far-reaching consequences in the treatment of degenerative diseases, acute injury, and aging. Thus, identifying and learning to manipulate the sequential steps that

  19. Firing patterns and synchronization in nonsynaptic epileptiform activity: the effect of gap junctions modulated by potassium accumulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santos, D O C; Dickman, R; Rodrigues, A M; De Almeida, A C G

    2009-01-01

    Several lines of evidence point to the modification of firing patterns and of synchronization due to gap junctions (GJs) as having a role in the establishment of epileptiform activity (EA). However, previous studies consider GJs as ohmic resistors, ignoring the effects of intense variations in ionic concentration known to occur during seizures. In addition to GJs, extracellular potassium is regarded as a further important factor involved in seizure initiation and sustainment. To analyze how these two mechanisms act together to shape firing and synchronization, we use a detailed computational model for in vitro high-K + and low-Ca 2+ nonsynaptic EA. The model permits us to explore the modulation of electrotonic interactions under ionic concentration changes caused by electrodiffusion in the extracellular space, altered by tortuosity. In addition, we investigate the special case of null GJ current. Increased electrotonic interaction alters bursts and action potential frequencies, favoring synchronization. The particularities of pattern changes depend on the tortuosity and array size. Extracellular potassium accumulation alone modifies firing and synchronization when the GJ coupling is null

  20. Segmental Bayesian estimation of gap-junctional and inhibitory conductance of inferior olive neurons from spike trains with complicated dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huu eHoang

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The inverse problem for estimating model parameters from brain spike data is an ill-posed problem because of a huge mismatch in the system complexity between the model and the brain as well as its non-stationary dynamics, and needs a stochastic approach that finds the most likely solution among many possible solutions. In the present study, we developed a segmental Bayesian method to estimate the two parameters of interest, the gap-junctional (gc and inhibitory conductance (gi from inferior olive spike data. Feature vectors were estimated for the spike data in a segment-wise fashion to compensate for the non-stationary firing dynamics. Hierarchical Bayesian estimation was conducted to estimate the gc and gi for every spike segment using a forward model constructed in the principal component analysis (PCA space of the feature vectors, and to merge the segmental estimates into single estimates for every neuron. The segmental Bayesian estimation gave smaller fitting errors than the conventional Bayesian inference, which finds the estimates once across the entire spike data, or the minimum error method, which directly finds the closest match in the PCA space. The segmental Bayesian inference has the potential to overcome the problem of non-stationary dynamics and resolve the ill-posedness of the inverse problem because of the mismatch between the model and the brain under the constraints based, and it is a useful tool to evaluate parameters of interest for neuroscience from experimental spike train data.

  1. Sample preconcentration utilizing nanofractures generated by junction gap breakdown assisted by self-assembled monolayer of gold nanoparticles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Ping Jen

    Full Text Available The preconcentration of proteins with low concentrations can be used to increase the sensitivity and accuracy of detection. A nonlinear electrokinetic flow is induced in a nanofluidic channel due to the overlap of electrical double layers, resulting in the fast accumulation of proteins, referred to as the exclusion-enrichment effect. The proposed chip for protein preconcentration was fabricated using simple standard soft lithography with a polydimethylsiloxane replica. This study extends our previous paper, in which gold nanoparticles were manually deposited onto the surface of a protein preconcentrator. In the present work, nanofractures were formed by utilizing the self-assembly of gold-nanoparticle-assisted electric breakdown. This reliable method for nanofracture formation, involving self-assembled monolayers of nanoparticles at the junction gap between microchannels, also decreases the required electric breakdown voltage. The experimental results reveal that a high concentration factor of 1.5×10(4 for a protein sample with an extremely low concentration of 1 nM was achieved in 30 min by using the proposed chip, which is faster than our previously proposed chip at the same conditions. Moreover, an immunoassay of bovine serum albumin (BSA and anti-BSA was carried out to demonstrate the applicability of the proposed chip.

  2. Closing the gap between glia and neuroblast proliferation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Limmer, Stefanie; Klämbt, Christian

    2014-08-11

    Reporting in this issue of Developmental Cell, Spéder and Brand (2014) show that gap junctions are required in blood-brain barrier glial cells to reactivate proliferation of quiescent neuroblasts. Gap junctions allow synchronous Ca(2+) waves and control insulin-like protein Dipl6 expression and secretion to trigger neuroblast division. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. A generic concept to overcome bandgap limitations for designing highly efficient multi-junction photovoltaic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Fei; Li, Ning; Fecher, Frank W; Gasparini, Nicola; Ramirez Quiroz, Cesar Omar; Bronnbauer, Carina; Hou, Yi; Radmilović, Vuk V; Radmilović, Velimir R; Spiecker, Erdmann; Forberich, Karen; Brabec, Christoph J

    2015-07-16

    The multi-junction concept is the most relevant approach to overcome the Shockley-Queisser limit for single-junction photovoltaic cells. The record efficiencies of several types of solar technologies are held by series-connected tandem configurations. However, the stringent current-matching criterion presents primarily a material challenge and permanently requires developing and processing novel semiconductors with desired bandgaps and thicknesses. Here we report a generic concept to alleviate this limitation. By integrating series- and parallel-interconnections into a triple-junction configuration, we find significantly relaxed material selection and current-matching constraints. To illustrate the versatile applicability of the proposed triple-junction concept, organic and organic-inorganic hybrid triple-junction solar cells are constructed by printing methods. High fill factors up to 68% without resistive losses are achieved for both organic and hybrid triple-junction devices. Series/parallel triple-junction cells with organic, as well as perovskite-based subcells may become a key technology to further advance the efficiency roadmap of the existing photovoltaic technologies.

  4. Device characterization for design optimization of 4 junction inverted metamorphic concentrator solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Geisz, John F.; France, Ryan M.; Steiner, Myles A.; Friedman, Daniel J. [National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO 80401 (United States); García, Iván [National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO 80401 USA and Instituto de Energía Solar, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Avda Complutense s/n, 28040 Madrid (Spain)

    2014-09-26

    Quantitative electroluminescence (EL) and luminescent coupling (LC) analysis, along with more conventional characterization techniques, are combined to completely characterize the subcell JV curves within a fourjunction (4J) inverted metamorphic solar cell (IMM). The 4J performance under arbitrary spectral conditions can be predicted from these subcell JV curves. The internal radiative efficiency (IRE) of each junction has been determined as a function of current density from the external radiative efficiency using optical modeling, but this required the accurate determination of the individual junction current densities during the EL measurement as affected by LC. These measurement and analysis techniques can be applied to any multijunction solar cell. The 4J IMM solar cell used to illustrate these techniques showed excellent junction quality as exhibited by high IRE and a one-sun AM1.5D efficiency of 36.3%. This device operates up to 1000 suns without limitations due to any of the three tunnel junctions.

  5. Scalability of multi-junction organic solar cells for large area organic solar modules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Xin; Lee, Kyusang; Forrest, Stephen R.

    2015-05-01

    We investigate the scalability of multi-junction organic photovoltaic cells (OPV) with device areas ranging from 1 mm2 to 1 cm2, as well as 25 cm2 active area solar modules. We find that the series resistance losses in 1 cm2 vs. 1 mm2 OPV cell efficiencies are significantly higher in single junction cells than tandem, triple, and four junction cells due to the lower operating voltage and higher current of the former. Using sub-electrodes to reduce series resistance, the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of multi-junction cells is almost independent of area from 1 mm2 to 1 cm2. Twenty-five, 1 cm2 multi-junction cell arrays are integrated in a module and connected in a series-parallel circuit configuration. A yield of 100% with a deviation of PCE from cell to cell of <10% is achieved. The module generates an output power of 162 ± 9 mW under simulated AM1.5G illumination at one sun intensity, corresponding to PCE = 6.5 ± 0.1%, slightly lower than PCE of discrete cells ranging from 6.7% to 7.2%.

  6. Progress in the development of metamorphic multi-junction III-V space solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sinharoy, S.; Patton, M.O.; Valko, T.M.; Weizer, V.G. [Essential Research Inc., Cleveland, OH (United States)

    2002-07-01

    Theoretical calculations have shown that highest-efficiency III-V multi-junction solar cells require alloy structures that cannot be grown on a lattice-matched substrate. Ever since the first demonstration of high efficiency metamorphic single-junction 1.1 and 1.2 eV InGaAs solar cells, interest has grown in the development of multi-junction cells of this type, using graded buffer layer technology. Essential Research Incorporated (ERI) is currently developing a dual-junction 1.6 eV InGaP/1.1 eV InGaAs tandem cell (projected practical air-mass zero (AMO), one-sun efficiency of 27%, and 100-sun efficiency of 31.1%) under a Ballistic Missile Defense Command (BMDO) SBIR Phase II program. A second ongoing research effort involves the development of a 2.1 eV A1GaInP/1.6 eV InGaAsP/1.2 eV InGaAs triple-junction concentrator tandem cell (projected practical AMO efficiency 36.5% under 100 suns) under a SBIR Phase II program funded by the Air Force. We are in the process of optimizing the dual-junction cell performance. For the triple-junction cell, we have developed the bottom and the middle cell, and are in the process of developing the layer structures needed for the top cell. A progress report is presented in this paper. (author)

  7. Changes in homologous and heterologous gap junction contacts during maturation-inducing hormone-dependent meiotic resumption in ovarian follicles of Atlantic croaker

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolamba, D.; Patino, R.; Yoshizaki, G.; Thomas, P.

    2003-01-01

    Homologous (granulosa cell-granulosa cell) gap junction (GJ) contacts increase in ovarian follicles of Atlantic croaker (Micropogonias undulatus) during the early (first) stage of maturation, but their profile during the second stage [i.e., during maturation-inducing hormone (MIH)-mediated meiotic resumption] is unknown. The profile of homologous GJ contacts during the second stage of maturation in croaker follicles was examined in this study and compared to that of heterologous (granulosa cell-oocyte) GJ, for which changes have been previously documented. Follicles were incubated with human chorionic gonadotropin to induce maturational competence (first stage), and then with MIH to induce meiotic resumption. The follicles were collected for examination immediately before and after different durations of MIH exposure until the oocyte had reached the stage of germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD; index of meiotic resumption). Ultrathin sections were observed by transmission electron microscopy, and homologous and heterologous GJ contacts were quantified along a 100-??m segment of granulosa cell-zona radiata complex per follicle (three follicles/time/fish, n=3 fish). Relatively high numbers of both types of GJ were observed before and after the first few hours of MIH exposure (up to the stage of oil droplet coalescence). GJ numbers declined during partial yolk globule coalescence (at or near GVBD) and were just under 50% of starting values after the completion of GVBD (P<0.05). These results confirm earlier observations that GVBD temporally correlates with declining heterologous GJ contacts, and for the first time in teleosts show that there is a parallel decline in homologous GJ. The significance of the changes in homologous and heterologous GJ is uncertain and deserves further study. ?? 2003 Elsevier Science (USA). All rights reserved.

  8. Diverse pattern of gap junction beta-2 and gap junction beta-4 genes mutations and lack of contribution of DFNB21, DFNB24, DFNB29, and DFNB42 loci in autosomal recessive nonsyndromic hearing loss patients in Hormozgan, Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masoud Akbarzadeh Laleh

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: We aimed to determine the contribution of four DFNB loci and mutation analysis of gap junction beta-2 (GJB2 and GJB4 genes in autosomal recessive nonsyndromic hearing loss (ARNSHL in South of Iran. Materials and Methods: A total of 36 large ARNSHL pedigrees with at least two affected subjects were enrolled in the current study. The GJB2 and GJB4 genes mutations were screened using direct sequencing method. The GJB2 and GJB4 negative families were analyzed for the linkage to DFNB21, DFNB24, DFNB29, and DFNB42 loci by genotyping the corresponding STR markers using polymerase chain reaction-PAGE method. Results: We found a homozygous nonsense mutation W77X and a homozygous missense mutation C169W in 5.55% of studied families in GJB2 and GJB4 genes, respectively. Five heterozygous mutations including V63G, A78T, and R127H in GJB2 gene, and R103C and R227W in GJB4 gene were detected. We identified two novel variations V63G in GJB2 and R227W in GJB4. In silico analysis predicted that both novel variations are deleterious mutations. We did not unveil any linkage between DFNB21, DFNB24, DFNB29, and DFNB42 loci and ARNSHL among studied families. Conclusion: This is the first report of GJB2 and GJB4 mutations from Hormozgan population. According to the previous publications regarding GJB2 and GJB4 mutations, the distribution of the mutations is different from other parts of Iran that should be considered in primary health-care programs. Further investigations are needed to evaluate the contribution of other loci in ARNSHL subjects in South of Iran.

  9. Inhibition of gap-junctional intercellular communication and activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases by cyanobacterial extracts--indications of novel tumor-promoting cyanotoxins?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bláha, Ludĕk; Babica, Pavel; Hilscherová, Klára; Upham, Brad L

    2010-01-01

    Toxicity and liver tumor promotion of cyanotoxins microcystins have been extensively studied. However, recent studies document that other metabolites present in the complex cyanobacterial water blooms may also have adverse health effects. In this study we used rat liver epithelial stem-like cells (WB-F344) to examine the effects of cyanobacterial extracts on two established markers of tumor promotion, inhibition of gap-junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) and activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) - ERK1/2. Extracts of cyanobacteria (laboratory cultures of Microcystis aeruginosa and Aphanizomenon flos-aquae and water blooms dominated by these species) inhibited GJIC and activated MAPKs in a dose-dependent manner (effective concentrations ranging 0.5-5mgd.w./mL). Effects were independent of the microcystin content and the strongest responses were elicited by the extracts of Aphanizomenon sp. Neither pure microcystin-LR nor cylindrospermopsin inhibited GJIC or activated MAPKs. Modulations of GJIC and MAPKs appeared to be specific to cyanobacterial extracts since extracts from green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, heterotrophic bacterium Klebsiella terrigena, and isolated bacterial lipopolysaccharides had no comparable effects. Our study provides the first evidence on the existence of unknown cyanobacterial toxic metabolites that affect in vitro biomarkers of tumor promotion, i.e. inhibition of GJIC and activation of MAPKs.

  10. HYS-32, a novel analogue of combretastatin A-4, enhances connexin43 expression and gap junction intercellular communication in rat astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Pei-Chun; Shen, Chien-Chang; Liao, Chih-Kai; Jow, Guey-Mei; Chiu, Chi-Ting; Chung, Tun-Hui; Wu, Jiahn-Chun

    2013-05-01

    HYS-32 [4-(3,4-dimethoxyphenyl)-3-(naphthalen-2-yl)-2(5H)-furanone] is a new analogue of the anti-tumor compound combretastatin A-4 containing a cis-stilbene moiety. In this study, we investigated its effects on Cx43 gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) and the signaling pathway involved in rat primary astrocytes. Western blot analyses showed that HYS-32 dose- and time-dependently upregulated Cx43 expression. A confocal microscopic study and scrape-loading/dye transfer analyses demonstrated that HYS-32 (5μM) induced microtubule coiling, accumulation of Cx43 in gap junction plaques, and increased GJIC in astrocytes. The HYS-32-induced microtubule coiling and Cx43 accumulation in gap junction plaques was reversed when HYS-32 was removed. Treatment of astrocytes with cycloheximide resulted in time-dependent degradation of by co-treatment with HYS-32 by increasing the half-life of Cx43. Co-treatment with HYS-32 also prevented the LPS-induced downregulation of Cx43 and inhibition of GJIC in astrocytes. HYS-32 induced activation of PKC, ERK, and JNK, and co-treatment with the PKC inhibitor Go6976 or the ERK inhibitor PD98059, but not the JNK inhibitor SP600125, prevented the HYS-32-induced increase in Cx43 expression and GJIC. Go6976 suppressed the HYS-32-induced PKC phosphorylation and increase in phospho-ERK levels, while PD98059 did not prevent the HYS-32-induced increase in phospho-PKC levels, suggesting that PKC is an upstream effector of ERK. In conclusion, our results show that HYS-32 increases the half-life of Cx43 and enhances Cx43 expression and GJIC in astrocytes via a PKC-ERK signaling cascade. These novel biological effects of HYS-32 on astrocyte gap junctions support its potential for therapeutic use as a protective agent for the central nervous system. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Modeling Radiation Effects on a Triple Junction Solar Cell using Silvaco ATLAS

    OpenAIRE

    Schiavo, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    In this research, Silvaco ATLAS, an advanced virtual wafer fabrication tool, was used to model the effects of radiation on a triple junction InGaP/GaAs/Ge solar cell. A Silvaco ATLAS model of a triple junction InGaP/GaAs/Ge cell was created by first creating individual models for solar cells composed of each material. Realistic doping levels were used and thicknesses were varied to produce the design parameters and create reasonably efficient solar cell models for testing. After the individua...

  12. Extending prematuration with cAMP modulators enhances the cumulus contribution to oocyte antioxidant defence and oocyte quality via gap junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, H J; Sutton-McDowall, M L; Wang, X; Sugimura, S; Thompson, J G; Gilchrist, R B

    2016-04-01

    Can bovine oocyte antioxidant defence and oocyte quality be improved by extending the duration of pre-in vitro maturation (IVM) with cyclic adenosine mono-phosphate (cAMP) modulators? Lengthening the duration of cAMP-modulated pre-IVM elevates intra-oocyte reduced glutathione (GSH) content and reduces hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) via increased cumulus cell-oocyte gap-junctional communication (GJC), associated with an improvement in subsequent embryo development and quality. Oocytes are susceptible to oxidative stress and the oocyte's most important antioxidant glutathione is supplied, at least in part, by cumulus cells. A temporary inhibition of spontaneous meiotic resumption in oocytes can be achieved by preventing a fall in cAMP, and cyclic AMP-modulated pre-IVM maintains cumulus-oocyte GJC and improves subsequent embryo development. This study consisted of a series of 10 experiments using bovine oocytes in vitro, each with multiple replicates. A range of pre-IVM durations were examined as the key study treatments which were compared with a control. The study was designed to examine if one of the oocyte's major antioxidant defences can be enhanced by pre-IVM with cAMP modulators, and to examine the contribution of cumulus-oocyte GJC on these processes. Immature bovine cumulus-oocyte complexes were treated in vitro without (control) or with the cAMP modulators; 100 µM forskolin (FSK) and 500 µM 3-isobutyl-1-methyxanthine (IBMX), for 0, 2, 4 or 6 h (pre-IVM phase) prior to IVM. Oocyte developmental competence was assessed by embryo development and quality post-IVM/IVF. Cumulus-oocyte GJC, intra-oocyte GSH and H2O2 were quantified at various time points during pre-IVM and IVM, in the presence and the absence of functional inhibitors: carbenoxolone (CBX) to block GJC and buthionine sulfoximide (BSO) to inhibit glutathione synthesis. Pre-IVM with FSK + IBMX increased subsequent blastocyst formation rate and quality compared with standard IVM (P gap junctions between

  13. Lysophosphatidic Acid Disrupts Junctional Integrity and Epithelial Cohesion in Ovarian Cancer Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yueying Liu

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Ovarian cancer metastasizes via exfoliation of free-floating cells and multicellular aggregates from the primary tumor to the peritoneal cavity. A key event in EOC metastasis is disruption of cell-cell contacts via modulation of intercellular junctional components including cadherins. Ascites is rich in lysophosphatidic acid (LPA, a bioactive lipid that may promote early events in ovarian cancer dissemination. The objective of this paper was to assess the effect of LPA on E-cadherin junctional integrity. We report a loss of junctional E-cadherin in OVCAR3, OVCA429, and OVCA433 cells exposed to LPA. LPA-induced loss of E-cadherin was concentration and time dependent. LPA increased MMP-9 expression and promoted MMP-9-catalyzed E-cadherin ectodomain shedding. Blocking LPA receptor signaling inhibited MMP-9 expression and restored junctional E-cadherin staining. LPA-treated cells demonstrated a significant decrease in epithelial cohesion. Together these data support a model wherein LPA induces MMP-9 expression and MMP-9-catalyzed E-cadherin ectodomain shedding, resulting in loss of E-cadherin junctional integrity and epithelial cohesion, facilitating metastatic dissemination of ovarian cancer cells.

  14. Unique cell type-specific junctional complexes in vascular endothelium of human and rat liver sinusoids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cyrill Géraud

    Full Text Available Liver sinusoidal endothelium is strategically positioned to control access of fluids, macromolecules and cells to the liver parenchyma and to serve clearance functions upstream of the hepatocytes. While clearance of macromolecular debris from the peripheral blood is performed by liver sinusoidal endothelial cells (LSECs using a delicate endocytic receptor system featuring stabilin-1 and -2, the mannose receptor and CD32b, vascular permeability and cell trafficking are controlled by transcellular pores, i.e. the fenestrae, and by intercellular junctional complexes. In contrast to blood vascular and lymphatic endothelial cells in other organs, the junctional complexes of LSECs have not yet been consistently characterized in molecular terms. In a comprehensive analysis, we here show that LSECs express the typical proteins found in endothelial adherens junctions (AJ, i.e. VE-cadherin as well as α-, β-, p120-catenin and plakoglobin. Tight junction (TJ transmembrane proteins typical of endothelial cells, i.e. claudin-5 and occludin, were not expressed by rat LSECs while heterogenous immunreactivity for claudin-5 was detected in human LSECs. In contrast, junctional molecules preferentially associating with TJ such as JAM-A, B and C and zonula occludens proteins ZO-1 and ZO-2 were readily detected in LSECs. Remarkably, among the JAMs JAM-C was considerably over-expressed in LSECs as compared to lung microvascular endothelial cells. In conclusion, we show here that LSECs form a special kind of mixed-type intercellular junctions characterized by co-occurrence of endothelial AJ proteins, and of ZO-1 and -2, and JAMs. The distinct molecular architecture of the intercellular junctional complexes of LSECs corroborates previous ultrastructural findings and provides the molecular basis for further analyses of the endothelial barrier function of liver sinusoids under pathologic conditions ranging from hepatic inflammation to formation of liver metastasis.

  15. NREL, CSEM Jointly Set New Efficiency Record with Dual-Junction Solar Cell

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2016-01-01

    Scientists set a new world record for converting non-concentrated sunlight into electricity using a dual-junction III-V/Si solar cell. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM) scientists have collaborated to create a novel tandem solar cell that operates at 29.8% conversion efficiency under non-concentrator (1-sun) conditions. In comparison, the 1-sun efficiency of a silicon (Si) single-junction solar cell is probably still a few years away from converging on its practical limit of about 26%.

  16. Quadruple-Junction Thin-Film Silicon-Based Solar Cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Si, F.T.

    2017-01-01

    The direct utilization of sunlight is a critical energy source in a sustainable future. One of the options is to convert the solar energy into electricity using thin-film silicon-based solar cells (TFSSCs). Solar cells in a triple-junction configuration have exhibited the highest energy conversion

  17. Investigation of InGaN/Si double junction tandem solar cells | Bouzid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In this work, the solar power conversion efficiency of InGaN/Si double junction tandem solar cells was investigated under 1-sun AM1.5 illumination, using realistic material parameters. With this intention, the current-voltage curves are calculated for different front recombination velocities and the influence of the bottom cell ...

  18. Competitive behavior of photons contributing to junction voltage jump in narrow band-gap semiconductor multi-quantum-well laser diodes at lasing threshold

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Feng, Liefeng, E-mail: fengliefeng@tju.edu.cn, E-mail: lihongru@nankai.edu.cn; Yang, Xiufang; Wang, Cunda; Yao, Dongsheng [Tianjin Key Laboratory of Low Dimensional Materials Physics and Preparing Technology, Faculty of Science, Tianjin University, Tianjin 300072 (China); Li, Yang [Business and Vocational College of Hainan, Haikou 570203 (China); Li, Ding; Hu, Xiaodong [Research Center for Wide Band Gap Semiconductors, State Key Laboratory for Artificial Microstructure and Mesoscopic Physics, School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing 100871 (China); Li, Hongru, E-mail: fengliefeng@tju.edu.cn, E-mail: lihongru@nankai.edu.cn [State Key Laboratory for Medicinal Chemistry and Biology, College of Pharmacy, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071 (China)

    2015-04-15

    The junction behavior of different narrow band-gap multi-quantum-well (MQW) laser diodes (LDs) confirmed that the jump in the junction voltage in the threshold region is a general characteristic of narrow band-gap LDs. The relative change in the 1310 nm LD is the most obvious. To analyze this sudden voltage change, the threshold region is divided into three stages by I{sub th}{sup l} and I{sub th}{sup u}, as shown in Fig. 2; I{sub th}{sup l} is the conventional threshold, and as long as the current is higher than this threshold, lasing exists and the IdV/dI-I plot drops suddenly; I{sub th}{sup u} is the steady lasing point, at which the separation of the quasi-Fermi levels of electron and holes across the active region (V{sub j}) is suddenly pinned. Based on the evolutionary model of dissipative structure theory, the rate equations of the photons in a single-mode LD were deduced in detail at I{sub th}{sup l} and I{sub th}{sup u}. The results proved that the observed behavior of stimulated emission suddenly substituting for spontaneous emission, in a manner similar to biological evolution, must lead to a sudden increase in the injection carriers in the threshold region, which then causes the sudden increase in the junction voltage in this region.

  19. Competitive behavior of photons contributing to junction voltage jump in narrow band-gap semiconductor multi-quantum-well laser diodes at lasing threshold

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feng, Liefeng; Yang, Xiufang; Wang, Cunda; Yao, Dongsheng; Li, Yang; Li, Ding; Hu, Xiaodong; Li, Hongru

    2015-01-01

    The junction behavior of different narrow band-gap multi-quantum-well (MQW) laser diodes (LDs) confirmed that the jump in the junction voltage in the threshold region is a general characteristic of narrow band-gap LDs. The relative change in the 1310 nm LD is the most obvious. To analyze this sudden voltage change, the threshold region is divided into three stages by I th l and I th u , as shown in Fig. 2; I th l is the conventional threshold, and as long as the current is higher than this threshold, lasing exists and the IdV/dI-I plot drops suddenly; I th u is the steady lasing point, at which the separation of the quasi-Fermi levels of electron and holes across the active region (V j ) is suddenly pinned. Based on the evolutionary model of dissipative structure theory, the rate equations of the photons in a single-mode LD were deduced in detail at I th l and I th u . The results proved that the observed behavior of stimulated emission suddenly substituting for spontaneous emission, in a manner similar to biological evolution, must lead to a sudden increase in the injection carriers in the threshold region, which then causes the sudden increase in the junction voltage in this region

  20. Ultrathin high band gap solar cells with improved efficiencies from the world's oldest photovoltaic material.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todorov, Teodor K; Singh, Saurabh; Bishop, Douglas M; Gunawan, Oki; Lee, Yun Seog; Gershon, Talia S; Brew, Kevin W; Antunez, Priscilla D; Haight, Richard

    2017-09-25

    Selenium was used in the first solid state solar cell in 1883 and gave early insights into the photoelectric effect that inspired Einstein's Nobel Prize work; however, the latest efficiency milestone of 5.0% was more than 30 years ago. The recent surge of interest towards high-band gap absorbers for tandem applications led us to reconsider this attractive 1.95 eV material. Here, we show completely redesigned selenium devices with improved back and front interfaces optimized through combinatorial studies and demonstrate record open-circuit voltage (V OC ) of 970 mV and efficiency of 6.5% under 1 Sun. In addition, Se devices are air-stable, non-toxic, and extremely simple to fabricate. The absorber layer is only 100 nm thick, and can be processed at 200 ˚C, allowing temperature compatibility with most bottom substrates or sub-cells. We analyze device limitations and find significant potential for further improvement making selenium an attractive high-band-gap absorber for multi-junction device applications.Wide band gap semiconductors are important for the development of tandem photovoltaics. By introducing buffer layers at the front and rear side of solar cells based on selenium; Todorov et al., reduce interface recombination losses to achieve photoconversion efficiencies of 6.5%.

  1. Improved Optics in Monolithic Perovskite/Silicon Tandem Solar Cells with a Nanocrystalline Silicon Recombination Junction

    KAUST Repository

    Sahli, Florent

    2017-10-09

    Perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells are increasingly recognized as promi­sing candidates for next-generation photovoltaics with performance beyond the single-junction limit at potentially low production costs. Current designs for monolithic tandems rely on transparent conductive oxides as an intermediate recombination layer, which lead to optical losses and reduced shunt resistance. An improved recombination junction based on nanocrystalline silicon layers to mitigate these losses is demonstrated. When employed in monolithic perovskite/silicon heterojunction tandem cells with a planar front side, this junction is found to increase the bottom cell photocurrent by more than 1 mA cm−2. In combination with a cesium-based perovskite top cell, this leads to tandem cell power-conversion efficiencies of up to 22.7% obtained from J–V measurements and steady-state efficiencies of up to 22.0% during maximum power point tracking. Thanks to its low lateral conductivity, the nanocrystalline silicon recombination junction enables upscaling of monolithic perovskite/silicon heterojunction tandem cells, resulting in a 12.96 cm2 monolithic tandem cell with a steady-state efficiency of 18%.

  2. Improved Optics in Monolithic Perovskite/Silicon Tandem Solar Cells with a Nanocrystalline Silicon Recombination Junction

    KAUST Repository

    Sahli, Florent; Kamino, Brett A.; Werner, Jé ré mie; Brä uninger, Matthias; Paviet-Salomon, Bertrand; Barraud, Loris; Monnard, Raphaë l; Seif, Johannes Peter; Tomasi, Andrea; Jeangros, Quentin; Hessler-Wyser, Aï cha; De Wolf, Stefaan; Despeisse, Matthieu; Nicolay, Sylvain; Niesen, Bjoern; Ballif, Christophe

    2017-01-01

    Perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells are increasingly recognized as promi­sing candidates for next-generation photovoltaics with performance beyond the single-junction limit at potentially low production costs. Current designs for monolithic tandems rely on transparent conductive oxides as an intermediate recombination layer, which lead to optical losses and reduced shunt resistance. An improved recombination junction based on nanocrystalline silicon layers to mitigate these losses is demonstrated. When employed in monolithic perovskite/silicon heterojunction tandem cells with a planar front side, this junction is found to increase the bottom cell photocurrent by more than 1 mA cm−2. In combination with a cesium-based perovskite top cell, this leads to tandem cell power-conversion efficiencies of up to 22.7% obtained from J–V measurements and steady-state efficiencies of up to 22.0% during maximum power point tracking. Thanks to its low lateral conductivity, the nanocrystalline silicon recombination junction enables upscaling of monolithic perovskite/silicon heterojunction tandem cells, resulting in a 12.96 cm2 monolithic tandem cell with a steady-state efficiency of 18%.

  3. Connexin43 hemichannels contributes to the disassembly of cell junctions through modulation of intracellular oxidative status

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan Chi

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Connexin (Cx hemichannels regulate many cellular processes with little information available regarding their mechanisms. Given that many pathological factors that activate hemichannels also disrupts the integrity of cellular junctions, we speculated a potential participation of hemichannels in the regulation of cell junctions. Here we tested this hypothesis. Exposure of renal tubular epithelial cells to Ca2+-free medium led to disassembly of tight and adherens junctions, as indicated by the reduced level of ZO-1 and cadherin, disorganization of F-actin, and severe drop in transepithelial electric resistance. These changes were preceded by an activation of Cx43 hemichannels, as revealed by extracellular efflux of ATP and intracellular influx of Lucifer Yellow. Inhibition of hemichannels with chemical inhibitors or Cx43 siRNA greatly attenuated the disassembly of cell junctions. Further analysis using fetal fibroblasts derived from Cx43 wide-type (Cx43+/+, heterozygous (Cx43+/- and knockout (Cx43-/- littermates showed that Cx43-positive cells (Cx43+/+ exhibited more dramatic changes in cell shape, F-actin, and cadherin in response to Ca2+ depletion, as compared to Cx43-null cells (Cx43-/-. Consistently, these cells had higher level of protein carbonyl modification and phosphorylation, and much stronger activation of P38 and JNK. Hemichannel opening led to extracellular loss of the major antioxidant glutathione (GSH. Supplement of cells with exogenous GSH or inhibition of oxidative sensitive kinases largely prevented the above-mentioned changes. Taken together, our study indicates that Cx43 hemichannels promote the disassembly of cell junctions through regulation of intracellular oxidative status.

  4. Conditioned medium from LS 174T goblet cells treated with oxyresveratrol strengthens tight junctions in Caco-2 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Dahyun; Jo, HyunA; Hwang, Seonwook; Kim, Jeong-Keun; Kim, In-Ho; Lim, Young-Hee

    2017-01-01

    Strengthening of intestinal tight junctions provides an effective barrier from the external environment. Goblet cell-derived trefoil factor 3 (TFF3) increases transepithelial resistance by upregulating the expression of tight junction proteins. Oxyresveratrol (OXY) is a hydroxyl-substituted stilbene found in the roots, leaves, stems, and fruit of many plants and known to have various biological activities. In this study, we investigated the strengthening effect of OXY on intestinal tight junctions through stimulation of TFF production in goblet cells. We prepared conditioned medium from LS 174T goblet cells treated with OXY (GCO-CM) and investigated the effect of GCO-CM on strengthening tight junctions of Caco-2 cells. The mRNA and protein expression levels of major tight junction components (claudin-1, occludin, and ZO-1) were measured by quantitative real-time PCR and western blotting, respectively. Transepithelial electric resistance (TEER) was measured using an ohm/V meter. Monolayer permeability was evaluated by paracellular transport of fluorescein isothiocyanate-dextran. OXY showed a strong antioxidant activity. It significantly increased the expression level of TFF3 in LS 174T goblet cells. GCO-CM prepared by treatment with 2.5, 5, and 10μg/ml OXY did not show cytotoxicity in Caco-2 cells. GCO-CM increased the mRNA and protein expression levels of claudin-1, occludin, and ZO-1. It also significantly increased tight junction integrity and reduced permeability in a dose-dependent manner. OXY stimulates the expression of TFF3 in goblet cells, which might increase the integrity of the intestinal tight junction barrier. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  5. Influence of the spatially inhomogeneous gap distribution on the quasiparticle current in c-axis junctions involving d-wave superconductors with charge density waves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekino, T; Gabovich, A M; Suan Li, Mai; Szymczak, H; Voitenko, A I

    2016-11-09

    The quasiparticle tunnel current J(V) between the superconducting ab-planes along the c-axis and the corresponding conductance [Formula: see text] were calculated for symmetric junctions composed of disordered d-wave layered superconductors partially gapped by charge density waves (CDWs). Here, V is the voltage. Both the checkerboard and unidirectional CDWs were considered. It was shown that the spatial spread of the CDW-pairing strength substantially smears the peculiarities of G(V) appropriate to uniform superconductors. The resulting curves G(V) become very similar to those observed for a number of cuprates in intrinsic junctions, e.g. mesas. In particular, the influence of CDWs may explain the peak-dip-hump structures frequently found for high-T c oxides.

  6. The status of intercellular junctions in established lens epithelial cell lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dave, Alpana; Craig, Jamie E; Sharma, Shiwani

    2012-01-01

    Cataract is the major cause of vision-related disability worldwide. Mutations in the crystallin genes are the most common known cause of inherited congenital cataract. Mutations in the genes associated with intercellular contacts, such as Nance-Horan Syndrome (NHS) and Ephrin type A receptor-2 (EPHA2), are other recognized causes of congenital cataract. The EPHA2 gene has been also associated with age-related cataract, suggesting that intercellular junctions are important in not only lens development, but also in maintaining lens transparency. The purpose of this study was to analyze the expression and localization of the key cell junction and cytoskeletal proteins, and of NHS and EPHA2, in established lens epithelial cell lines to determine their suitability as model epithelial systems for the functional investigation of genes involved in intercellular contacts and implicated in cataract. The expression and subcellular localization of occludin and zona occludens protein-1 (ZO-1), which are associated with tight junctions; E-cadherin, which is associated with adherence junctions; and the cytoskeletal actin were analyzed in monolayers of a human lens epithelial cell line (SRA 01/04) and a mouse lens epithelial cell line (αTN4). In addition, the expression and subcellular localization of the NHS and EPHA2 proteins were analyzed in these cell lines. Protein or mRNA expression was respectively determined by western blotting or reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), and localization was determined by immunofluorescence labeling. Human SRA 01/04 and mouse αTN4 lens epithelial cells expressed either the proteins of interest or their encoding mRNA. Occludin, ZO-1, and NHS proteins localized to the cellular periphery, whereas E-cadherin, actin, and EPHA2 localized in the cytoplasm in these cell lines. The human SRA 01/04 and mouse αTN4 lens epithelial cells express the key junctional proteins. The localization patterns of these proteins suggest that

  7. Desmosomal Molecules In and Out of Adhering Junctions: Normal and Diseased States of Epidermal, Cardiac and Mesenchymally Derived Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian Pieperhoff

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Current cell biology textbooks mention only two kinds of cell-to-cell adhering junctions coated with the cytoplasmic plaques: the desmosomes (maculae adhaerentes, anchoring intermediate-sized filaments (IFs, and the actin microfilament-anchoring adherens junctions (AJs, including both punctate (puncta adhaerentia and elongate (fasciae adhaerentes structures. In addition, however, a series of other junction types has been identified and characterized which contain desmosomal molecules but do not fit the definition of desmosomes. Of these special cell-cell junctions containing desmosomal glycoproteins or proteins we review the composite junctions (areae compositae connecting the cardiomyocytes of mature mammalian hearts and their importance in relation to human arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathies. We also emphasize the various plakophilin-2-positive plaques in AJs (coniunctiones adhaerentes connecting proliferatively active mesenchymally-derived cells, including interstitial cells of the heart and several soft tissue tumor cell types. Moreover, desmoplakin has also been recognized as a constituent of the plaques of the complexus adhaerentes connecting certain lymphatic endothelial cells. Finally, we emphasize the occurrence of the desmosomal transmembrane glycoprotein, desmoglein Dsg2, out of the context of any junction as dispersed cell surface molecules in certain types of melanoma cells and melanocytes. This broadening of our knowledge on the diversity of AJ structures indicates that it may still be too premature to close the textbook chapters on cell-cell junctions.

  8. Cell polarity development and protein trafficking in hepatocytes lacking E-cadherin/beta-catenin-based adherens junctions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Theard, Delphine; Steiner, Magdalena; Kalicharan, Dharamdajal; Hoekstra, Dick; van IJzendoorn, Sven C. D.

    Using a mutant hepatocyte cell line in which E-cadherin and ss-catenin are completely depleted from the cell surface, and, consequently, fail to form adherens junctions, we have investigated adherens junction requirement for apical-basolateral polarity development and polarized membrane trafficking.

  9. Star junctions and watermelons of pure or random quantum Ising chains: finite-size properties of the energy gap at criticality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monthus, Cécile

    2015-06-01

    We consider M  ⩾  2 pure or random quantum Ising chains of N spins when they are coupled via a single star junction at their origins or when they are coupled via two star junctions at the their two ends leading to the watermelon geometry. The energy gap is studied via a sequential self-dual real-space renormalization procedure that can be explicitly solved in terms of Kesten variables containing the initial couplings and and the initial transverse fields. In the pure case at criticality, the gap is found to decay as a power-law {ΔM}\\propto {{N}-z(M)} with the dynamical exponent z(M)=\\frac{M}{2} for the single star junction (the case M   =   2 corresponds to z   =   1 for a single chain with free boundary conditions) and z(M)   =   M  -  1 for the watermelon (the case M   =   2 corresponds to z   =   1 for a single chain with periodic boundary conditions). In the random case at criticality, the gap follows the Infinite Disorder Fixed Point scaling \\ln {ΔM}=-{{N}\\psi}g with the same activated exponent \\psi =\\frac{1}{2} as the single chain corresponding to M   =   2, and where g is an O(1) random positive variable, whose distribution depends upon the number M of chains and upon the geometry (star or watermelon).

  10. Amitriptyline up-regulates connexin43-gap junction in rat cultured cortical astrocytes via activation of the p38 and c-Fos/AP-1 signalling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morioka, N; Suekama, K; Zhang, F F; Kajitani, N; Hisaoka-Nakashima, K; Takebayashi, M; Nakata, Y

    2014-06-01

    Intercellular communication via gap junctions, comprised of connexin (Cx) proteins, allow for communication between astrocytes, which in turn is crucial for maintaining CNS homeostasis. The expression of Cx43 is decreased in post-mortem brains from patients with major depression. A potentially novel mechanism of tricyclic antidepressants is to increase the expression and functioning of gap junctions in astrocytes. The effect of amitriptyline on the expression of Cx43 and gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) in rat primary cultured cortical astrocytes was investigated. We also investigated the role of p38 MAPK intracellular signalling pathway in the amitriptyline-induced expression of Cx43 and GJIC. Treatment with amitriptyline for 48 h significantly up-regulated Cx43 mRNA, protein and GJIC. The up-regulation of Cx43 was not monoamine-related since noradrenaline, 5-HT and dopamine did not induce Cx43 expression and pretreatment with α- and β-adrenoceptor antagonists had no effect. Intracellular signalling involved p38 MAPK, as amitriptyline significantly increased p38 MAPK phosphorylation and Cx43 expression and GJIC were significantly blocked by the p38 inhibitor SB 202190. Furthermore, amitriptyline-induced Cx43 expression and GJIC were markedly reduced by transcription factor AP-1 inhibitors (curcumin and tanshinone IIA). The translocation of c-Fos from the cytosol and the nucleus of cortical astrocytes was increased by amitriptyline, and this response was dependent on p38 activity. These findings indicate a novel mechanism of action of amitriptyline through cortical astrocytes, and further suggest that targeting this mechanism could lead to the development of a new class of antidepressants. © 2014 The British Pharmacological Society.

  11. SENP3 grants tight junction integrity and cytoskeleton architecture in mouse Sertoli cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Di; Huang, Chun-Jie; Khan, Faheem Ahmed; Jiao, Xiao-Fei; Liu, Xiao-Ming; Pandupuspitasari, Nuruliarizki Shinta; Brohi, Rahim Dad; Huo, Li-Jun

    2017-08-29

    Germ cells develop in a sophisticated immune privileged microenvironment provided by specialized junctions contiguous the basement membrane of the adjacent Sertoli cells that constituted the blood-testis barrier (BTB) in seminiferous epithelium of testis in mammals. Deciphering the molecular regulatory machinery of BTB activity is central to improve male fertility and the role of post-translational modification including SUMOylation pathway is one of the key factors. Herein, we unveiled the mystery of the SUMO-2/3 specific protease SENP3 (Sentrin-specific protease 3) in BTB dynamics regulation. SENP3 is predominantly expressed in the nucleus of Sertoli and spermatocyte cells in adult mouse testis, and knockdown of SENP3 compromises tight junction in Sertoli cells by destructing the permeability function with a concomitant decline in trans-epithelial electrical resistance in primary Sertoli cells, which could attribute to the conspicuous dysfunction of tight junction (TJ) proteins (e.g., ZO-1, occludin) at the cell-cell interface due to the inactivation of STAT3. Moreover, SENP3 knockdown disrupts F-actin architecture in Sertoli cells through intervening Rac1/CDC42-N-WASP-Arp2/3 signaling pathway and Profilin-1 abundance. Our study pinpoints SENP3 might be a novel determinant of multiple pathways governing BTB dynamics in testis to support germ cells development in mammals.

  12. The role of engineered materials in superconducting tunnel junction X-ray detectors - Suppression of quasiparticle recombination losses via a phononic band gap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rippert, Edward D.; Ketterson, John B.; Chen, Jun; Song, Shenian; Lomatch, Susanne; Maglic, Stevan R.; Thomas, Christopher; Cheida, M. A.; Ulmer, Melville P.

    1992-01-01

    An engineered structure is proposed that can alleviate quasi-particle recombination losses via the existence of a phononic band gap that overlaps the 2-Delta energy of phonons produced during recombination of quasi-particles. Attention is given to a 1D Kronig-Penny model for phonons normally incident to the layers of a multilayered superconducting tunnel junction as an idealized example. A device with a high density of Bragg resonances is identified as desirable; both Nb/Si and NbN/SiN superlattices have been produced, with the latter having generally superior performance.

  13. Pseudomonas aeruginosa Transmigrates at Epithelial Cell-Cell Junctions, Exploiting Sites of Cell Division and Senescent Cell Extrusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillaume Golovkine

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available To achieve systemic infection, bacterial pathogens must overcome the critical and challenging step of transmigration across epithelial barriers. This is particularly true for opportunistic pathogens such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa, an agent which causes nosocomial infections. Despite extensive study, details on the mechanisms used by this bacterium to transmigrate across epithelial tissues, as well as the entry sites it uses, remain speculative. Here, using real-time microscopy and a model epithelial barrier, we show that P. aeruginosa employs a paracellular transmigration route, taking advantage of altered cell-cell junctions at sites of cell division or when senescent cells are expelled from the cell layer. Once a bacterium transmigrates, it is followed by a cohort of bacteria using the same entry point. The basal compartment is then invaded radially from the initial penetration site. Effective transmigration and propagation require type 4 pili, the type 3 secretion system (T3SS and a flagellum, although flagellum-deficient bacteria can occasionally invade the basal compartment from wounded areas. In the basal compartment, the bacteria inject the T3SS toxins into host cells, disrupting the cytoskeleton and focal contacts to allow their progression under the cells. Thus, P. aeruginosa exploits intrinsic host cell processes to breach the epithelium and invade the subcellular compartment.

  14. Characteristic features of silicon multijunction solar cells with vertical p-n junctions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guk, E.G.; Nalet, T.A.; Shvarts, M.Z.; Shuman, V.B.

    1997-01-01

    A relatively simple technology (without photolithography) based on diffusion welding and ion-plasma deposition of an insulating coating has been developed for fabricating multijunction silicon solar cells with vertical p-n junctions. The effective collection factor for such structures is independent of the wavelength of the incident light in the wavelength range λ=340-1080 nm

  15. Technology Enabling Ultra High Concentration Multi-Junction Cells. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bedair, S. M.; Colter, Peter

    2016-03-30

    The project goal is to enable multijunction cells to operate at greater than 2000× suns intensity with efficiency above forty percent. To achieve this goal the recipients have developed a robust high-bandgap tunnel junction, reduce series resistance, and integrated a practical heat dissipation scheme.

  16. Fluctuations of the peak current of tunnel diodes in multi-junction solar cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jandieri, K; Baranovskii, S D; Stolz, W; Gebhard, F; Guter, W; Hermle, M; Bett, A W

    2009-01-01

    Interband tunnel diodes are widely used to electrically interconnect the individual subcells in multi-junction solar cells. Tunnel diodes have to operate at high current densities and low voltages, especially when used in concentrator solar cells. They represent one of the most critical elements of multi-junction solar cells and the fluctuations of the peak current in the diodes have an essential impact on the performance and reliability of the devices. Recently we have found that GaAs tunnel diodes exhibit extremely high peak currents that can be explained by resonant tunnelling through defects homogeneously distributed in the junction. Experiments evidence rather large fluctuations of the peak current in the diodes fabricated from the same wafer. It is a challenging task to clarify the reason for such large fluctuations in order to improve the performance of the multi-junction solar cells. In this work we show that the large fluctuations of the peak current in tunnel diodes can be caused by relatively small fluctuations of the dopant concentration. We also show that the fluctuations of the peak current become smaller for deeper energy levels of the defects responsible for the resonant tunnelling.

  17. FAST TRACK COMMUNICATION: Eight-logic memory cell based on multiferroic junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Feng; Zhou, Y. C.; Tang, M. H.; Liu, Fen; Ma, Ying; Zheng, X. J.; Zhao, W. F.; Xu, H. Y.; Sun, Z. H.

    2009-04-01

    A model is proposed for a device combining a multiferroic tunnel junction with a magnetoelectric (ME) film in which the magnetic configuration is controlled by the electric field. Calculations embodying the Green's function approach show that the magnetic polarization can be switched on and off by an electric field in the ME film due to the effect of elastic coupling interaction. Using a model including the spin-filter effect and screening of polarization charges, we have produced eight logic states of tunnelling resistance in the tunnel junction and have obtained corresponding laws that control them. The results provide some insights into the realization of an eight-logic memory cell.

  18. Modeling and Design of Graphene GaAs Junction Solar Cell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yawei Kuang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Graphene based GaAs junction solar cell is modeled and investigated by Silvaco TCAD tools. The photovoltaic behaviors have been investigated considering structure and process parameters such as substrate thickness, dependence between graphene work function and transmittance, and n-type doping concentration in GaAs. The results show that the most effective region for photo photogenerated carriers locates very close to the interface under light illumination. Comprehensive technological design for junction yields a significant improvement of power conversion efficiency from 0.772% to 2.218%. These results are in good agreement with the reported experimental work.

  19. Transitional basal cells at the squamous-columnar junction generate Barrett’s oesophagus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Ming; Li, Haiyan; Zhang, Yongchun; Yang, Ying; Lu, Rong; Liu, Kuancan; Lin, Sijie; Lan, Xiaopeng; Wang, Haikun; Wu, Han; Zhu, Jian; Zhou, Zhongren; Xu, Jianming; Lee, Dong-Kee; Zhang, Lanjing; Lee, Yuan-Cho; Yuan, Jingsong; Abrams, Julian A.; Wang, Timothy G.; Sepulveda, Antonia R.; Wu, Qi; Chen, Huaiyong; Sun, Xin; She, Junjun; Chen, Xiaoxin; Que, Jianwen

    2017-01-01

    In several organ systems the transitional zone between different types of epithelia is a hotspot for pre-neoplastic metaplasia and malignancy1–3. However, the cell-of-origin for the metaplastic epithelium and subsequent malignancy, remains obscure1–3. In the case of Barrett’s oesophagus (BE), intestinal metaplasia occurs at the gastro-oesophageal junction, where stratified squamous epithelium transitions into simple columnar cells4. Based on different experimental models, several alternative cell types have been proposed as the source of the metaplasia, but in all cases the evidence is inconclusive and no model completely mimics BE with the presence of intestinal goblet cells5–8. Here, we describe a novel transitional columnar epithelium with distinct basal progenitor cells (p63+ KRT5+ KRT7+) in the squamous-columnar junction (SCJ) in the upper gastrointestinal tract of the mouse. We use multiple models and lineage tracing strategies to show that this unique SCJ basal cell population serves as a source of progenitors for the transitional epithelium. Moreover, upon ectopic expression of CDX2 these transitional basal progenitors differentiate into intestinal-like epithelium including goblet cells, thus reproducing Barrett’s metaplasia. A similar transitional columnar epithelium is present at the transitional zones of other mouse tissues, including the anorectal junction, and, importantly, at the gastro-oesophageal junction in the human gut. Acid reflux-induced oesophagitis and the multilayered epithelium (MLE) believed to be a precursor of BE are both characterized by the expansion of the transitional basal progenitor cells. Taken together our findings reveal the presence of a previously unidentified transitional zone in the epithelium of the upper gastrointestinal tract and provide evidence that the p63+ KRT7+ basal cells in this zone are the cell-of-origin for MLE and BE. PMID:29019984

  20. An ARC less InGaP/GaAs DJ solar cell with hetero tunnel junction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahoo, G. S.; Nayak, P. P.; Mishra, G. P.

    2016-07-01

    Multi junction solar cell has not achieved an optimum performance yet. To acquire more conversion efficiency research on multi junction solar cell are in progress. In this work we have proposed a dual junction solar cell with conversion efficiency of 43.603%. Mainly the focus is given on the tunnel diode, window layer and back surface field (BSF) layer of the cell, as all of them plays important role on the cell performance. Here we have designed a hetero InGaP/GaAs tunnel diode which makes tunnel diode more transparent to the bottom cell as well as reduces the recombination at the interfaces. The thickness of the window and BSF layer are optimized to achieve higher conversion efficiency. The simulation is carried out using Silvaco ATLAS TCAD under 1000 sun of AM1.5G spectrum. Different performance parameters of the cell like short circuit current density (Jsc), open circuit voltage (Voc), external quantum efficiency (EQE), fill factor (FF), conversion efficiency (η), spectral response and photogeneration rate of the cell are examined and compared with previously reported literatures. For the proposed model a Voc of 2.7043 V, Jsc of 1898.52 mA/cm2, FF of 88.88% and η of 43.6% are obtained.

  1. Cell Junction Pathology of Neural Stem Cells Is Associated With Ventricular Zone Disruption, Hydrocephalus, and Abnormal Neurogenesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Montserrat Guerra, Maria; Henzi, Roberto; Ortloff, Alexander; Lichtin, Nicole; Vio, Karin; Jimenez, Antonio J.; Dolores Dominguez-Pinos, Maria; Gonzalez, Cesar; Clara Jara, Maria; Hinostroza, Fernando; Rodriguez, Sara; Jara, Maryoris; Ortega, Eduardo; Guerra, Francisco; Sival, Deborah A.; den Dunnen, Wilfred F. A.; Perez-Figares, Jose M.; McAllister, James P.; Johanson, Conrad E.; Rodriguez, Esteban M.

    Fetal-onset hydrocephalus affects 1 to 3 per 1,000 live births. It is not only a disorder of cerebrospinal fluid dynamics but also a brain disorder that corrective surgery does not ameliorate. We hypothesized that cell junction abnormalities of neural stem cells (NSCs) lead to the inseparable

  2. Performance of single-junction and dual-junction InGaP/GaAs solar cells under low concentration ratios

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, Aurangzeb; Yamaguchi, Masafumi; Takamoto, Tatsuya

    2004-01-01

    A study of the performance of single-junction InGaP/GaAs and dual-junction InGaP/GaAs tandem cells under low concentration ratios (up to 15 suns), before and after 1 MeV electron irradiation is presented. Analysis of the tunnel junction parameters under different concentrated light illuminations reveals that the peak current (J P ) and valley current (J V ) densities should be greater than the short-circuit current density (J sc ) for better performance. The tunnel junction behavior against light intensity improved after irradiation. This led to the suggestion that the peak current density (J P ) and valley current density (J V ) of the tunnel junction were enhanced after irradiation or the peak current was shifted to higher concentration. The recovery of the radiation damage under concentrated light illumination conditions suggests that the performance of the InGaP/GaAs tandem solar cell can be enhanced even under low concentration ratios

  3. A new MATLAB/Simulink model of triple-junction solar cell and MPPT based on artificial neural networks for photovoltaic energy systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hegazy Rezk

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a new Matlab/Simulink model of a PV module and a maximum power point tracking (MPPT system for high efficiency InGaP/InGaAs/Ge triple-junction solar cell. The proposed technique is based on Artificial Neural Network. The equivalent circuit model of the triple-junction solar cell includes the parameters of each sub-cell. It is also include the effect of the temperature variations on the energy gap of each sub-cell as well as the diode reverse saturation currents. The implementation of a PV model is based on the triple-junction solar cell in the form of masked block in Matlab/Simulink software package that has a user-friendly icon and dialog. It is fast and accurate technique to follow the maximum power point. The simulation results of the proposed MPPT technique are compared with Perturb and Observe MPPT technique. The output power and energy of the proposed technique are higher than that of the Perturb and Observe MPPT technique. The proposed technique increases the output energy per day for a one PV module from 3.37 kW h to 3.75 kW h, i.e. a percentage of 11.28%.

  4. Overexpression of galectin-7 in mouse epidermis leads to loss of cell junctions and defective skin repair.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gaëlle Gendronneau

    Full Text Available The proteins of the galectin family are implicated in many cellular processes, including cell interactions, polarity, intracellular trafficking, and signal transduction. In human and mouse, galectin-7 is almost exclusively expressed in stratified epithelia, notably in the epidermis. Galectin-7 expression is also altered in several human tumors of epithelial origin. This study aimed at dissecting the consequences of galectin-7 overexpression on epidermis structure and functions in vivo.We established transgenic mice specifically overexpressing galectin-7 in the basal epidermal keratinocytes and analyzed the consequences on untreated skin and after UVB irradiation or mechanical injury.The intercellular cohesion of the epidermis is impaired in transgenic animals, with gaps developing between adjacent keratinocytes, associated with loss of adherens junctions. The epidermal architecture is aberrant with perturbations in the multilayered cellular organisation of the tissue, and structural defects in the basement membrane. These transgenic animals displayed a reduced re-epithelialisation potential following superficial wound, due to a defective collective migration of keratinocytes. Finally, a single mild dose of UVB induced an abnormal apoptotic response in the transgenic epidermis.These results indicate that an excess of galectin-7 leads to a destabilisation of adherens junctions associated with defects in epidermal repair. As this phenotype shares similarities with that of galectin-7 null mutant mice, we conclude that a critical level of this protein is required for maintaining proper epidermal homeostasis. This study brings new insight into the mode of action of galectins in normal and pathological situations.

  5. Adherens junction distribution mechanisms during cell-cell contact elongation in Drosophila.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabrielle Goldenberg

    Full Text Available During Drosophila gastrulation, amnioserosa (AS cells flatten and spread as an epithelial sheet. We used AS morphogenesis as a model to investigate how adherens junctions (AJs distribute along elongating cell-cell contacts in vivo. As the contacts elongated, total AJ protein levels increased along their length. However, genetically blocking this AJ addition indicated that it was not essential for maintaining AJ continuity. Implicating other remodeling mechanisms, AJ photobleaching revealed non-directional lateral mobility of AJs along the elongating contacts, as well as local AJ removal from the membranes. Actin stabilization with jasplakinolide reduced AJ redistribution, and live imaging of myosin II along elongating contacts revealed fragmented, expanding and contracting actomyosin networks, suggesting a mechanism for lateral AJ mobility. Actin stabilization also increased total AJ levels, suggesting an inhibition of AJ removal. Implicating AJ removal by endocytosis, clathrin endocytic machinery accumulated at AJs. However, dynamin disruption had no apparent effect on AJs, suggesting the involvement of redundant or dynamin-independent mechanisms. Overall, we propose that new synthesis, lateral diffusion, and endocytosis play overlapping roles to populate elongating cell-cell contacts with evenly distributed AJs in this in vivo system.

  6. Performance analysis of high-concentrated multi-junction solar cells in hot climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghoneim, Adel A.; Kandil, Kandil M.; Alzanki, Talal H.; Alenezi, Mohammad R.

    2018-03-01

    Multi-junction concentrator solar cells are a promising technology as they can fulfill the increasing energy demand with renewable sources. Focusing sunlight upon the aperture of multi-junction photovoltaic (PV) cells can generate much greater power densities than conventional PV cells. So, concentrated PV multi-junction solar cells offer a promising way towards achieving minimum cost per kilowatt-hour. However, these cells have many aspects that must be fixed to be feasible for large-scale energy generation. In this work, a model is developed to analyze the impact of various atmospheric factors on concentrator PV performance. A single-diode equivalent circuit model is developed to examine multi-junction cells performance in hot weather conditions, considering the impacts of both temperature and concentration ratio. The impacts of spectral variations of irradiance on annual performance of various high-concentrated photovoltaic (HCPV) panels are examined, adapting spectra simulations using the SMARTS model. Also, the diode shunt resistance neglected in the existing models is considered in the present model. The present results are efficiently validated against measurements from published data to within 2% accuracy. Present predictions show that the single-diode model considering the shunt resistance gives accurate and reliable results. Also, aerosol optical depth (AOD) and air mass are most important atmospheric parameters having a significant impact on HCPV cell performance. In addition, the electrical efficiency (η) is noticed to increase with concentration to a certain concentration degree after which it decreases. Finally, based on the model predictions, let us conclude that the present model could be adapted properly to examine HCPV cells' performance over a broad range of operating conditions.

  7. Molecular Diffusion through Cyanobacterial Septal Junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nieves-Morión, Mercedes; Mullineaux, Conrad W; Flores, Enrique

    2017-01-03

    Heterocyst-forming cyanobacteria grow as filaments in which intercellular molecular exchange takes place. During the differentiation of N 2 -fixing heterocysts, regulators are transferred between cells. In the diazotrophic filament, vegetative cells that fix CO 2 through oxygenic photosynthesis provide the heterocysts with reduced carbon and heterocysts provide the vegetative cells with fixed nitrogen. Intercellular molecular transfer has been traced with fluorescent markers, including calcein, 5-carboxyfluorescein, and the sucrose analogue esculin, which are observed to move down their concentration gradient. In this work, we used fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) assays in the model heterocyst-forming cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120 to measure the temperature dependence of intercellular transfer of fluorescent markers. We find that the transfer rate constants are directly proportional to the absolute temperature. This indicates that the "septal junctions" (formerly known as "microplasmodesmata") linking the cells in the filament allow molecular exchange by simple diffusion, without any activated intermediate state. This constitutes a novel mechanism for molecular transfer across the bacterial cytoplasmic membrane, in addition to previously characterized mechanisms for active transport and facilitated diffusion. Cyanobacterial septal junctions are functionally analogous to the gap junctions of metazoans. Although bacteria are frequently considered just as unicellular organisms, there are bacteria that behave as true multicellular organisms. The heterocyst-forming cyanobacteria grow as filaments in which cells communicate. Intercellular molecular exchange is thought to be mediated by septal junctions. Here, we show that intercellular transfer of fluorescent markers in the cyanobacterial filament has the physical properties of simple diffusion. Thus, cyanobacterial septal junctions are functionally analogous to metazoan gap junctions

  8. Effects of adenine nucleotide and sterol depletion on tight junction structure and function in MDCK cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ladino, C.A.

    1988-01-01

    The antitumor agent Hadacidin (H), N-formyl-hydroxyamino-acetic acid, reversibly inhibited the multiplication of clone 4 Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells at a 4 mM concentration within 24-48 hours. Treated cells were arrested in the S phase of the cell cycle. Accompanying this action was a 16-fold increase in the area occupied b the cells and a refractoriness to trypsin treatment. To test whether this effect was due to an increase in tight junction integrity, electrical resistance (TER) was measured across H-treated monolayers. Addition of H at the onset of junction formation reversibly prevented the development of TER. ATP and cAMP levels were decreased by H, as well as the rate of [ 3 H]-leucine incorporation into protein. When 1 mM dibutyryl-cAMP (d.cAMP) and theophylline were added, H had no effect on cell division or protein synthesis, and TER was partially restored. The addition of 1 mM d.cAMP and 1 mM theophylline to control cultures decreased TER, indicating a biphasic effect on TER development/maintenance. In a separate study, the effect of sterol depletion on tight junctions formation/maintenance in wild-type MDCK cells was investigated

  9. Ca2+-dependent localization of integrin-linked kinase to cell junctions in differentiating keratinocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vespa, Alisa; Darmon, Alison J; Turner, Christopher E; D'Souza, Sudhir J A; Dagnino, Lina

    2003-03-28

    Integrin complexes are necessary for proper proliferation and differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes. Differentiation of these cells is accompanied by down-regulation of integrins and focal adhesions as well as formation of intercellular adherens junctions through E-cadherin homodimerization. A central component of integrin adhesion complexes is integrin-linked kinase (ILK), which can induce loss of E-cadherin expression and epithelial-mesenchymal transformation when ectopically expressed in intestinal and mammary epithelia. In cultured primary mouse keratinocytes, we find that ILK protein levels are independent of integrin expression and signaling, since they remain constant during Ca(2+)-induced differentiation. In contrast, keratinocyte differentiation is accompanied by marked reduction in kinase activity in ILK immunoprecipitates and altered ILK subcellular distribution. Specifically, ILK distributes in close apposition to actin fibers along intercellular junctions in differentiated but not in undifferentiated keratinocytes. ILK localization to cell-cell borders occurs independently of integrin signaling and requires Ca(2+) as well as an intact actin cytoskeleton. Further, and in contrast to what is observed in other epithelial cells, ILK overexpression in differentiated keratinocytes does not promote E-cadherin down-regulation and epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Thus, novel tissue-specific mechanisms control the formation of ILK complexes associated with cell-cell junctions in differentiating murine epidermal keratinocytes.

  10. Hydrogen doping of Indium Tin Oxide due to thermal treatment of hetero-junction solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ritzau, Kurt-Ulrich, E-mail: kurt-ulrich.ritzau@ise.fraunhofer.de [Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE), Heidenhofstrasse 2, 79110 Freiburg (Germany); Behrendt, Torge [Infineon Technologies, Max-Planck-Straße 5, 59581 Warstein (Germany); Palaferri, Daniele [Laboratoire Matériaux et Phénomènes Quantiques, Université Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité, CNRS—UMR 7162, 75013 Paris (France); Bivour, Martin; Hermle, Martin [Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE), Heidenhofstrasse 2, 79110 Freiburg (Germany)

    2016-01-29

    Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) layers in silicon hetero junction solar cells change their electrical and optical properties when exposed to temperature treatments. Hydrogen which effuses from underlying amorphous silicon layers is identified to dope the ITO layer. This leads to an additional increase in conductivity. In this way an almost isolating ITO can become degenerately doped through temperature treatments. The resulting carrier density in the range of 10{sup 20} cm{sup −3} leads to a substantial increase in free carrier absorption, which in turn leads to an increased parasitic absorption in the cell device. Thus hydrogen effusion in silicon hetero-junction (SHJ) solar cells does not only affect the degradation of amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) passivation of crystalline silicon (c-Si), but also the electrical and optical properties of both front and back ITO layers. This leads to the further design rule for SHJ solar cells, meaning that ITO properties have to be optimized in the state after modification during temperature treatment. - Highlights: • ITO is additionally doped by heat treatment of silicon hetero-junction solar cells. • The discovered effect turns an almost isolating ITO into a degenerately doped TCO. • TCO properties have to be considered as measured in the final cell.

  11. Gonadotropin suppression in men leads to a reduction in claudin-11 at the Sertoli cell tight junction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCabe, M J; Tarulli, G A; Laven-Law, G; Matthiesson, K L; Meachem, S J; McLachlan, R I; Dinger, M E; Stanton, P G

    2016-04-01

    Are Sertoli cell tight junctions (TJs) disrupted in men undergoing hormonal contraception? Localization of the key Sertoli cell TJ protein, claudin-11, was markedly disrupted by 8 weeks of gonadotropin suppression, the degree of which was related to the extent of adluminal germ cell suppression. Sertoli cell TJs are vital components of the blood-testis barrier (BTB) that sequester developing adluminal meiotic germ cells and spermatids from the vascular compartment. Claudin-11 knockout mice are infertile; additionally claudin-11 is spatially disrupted in chronically gonadotropin-suppressed rats coincident with a loss of BTB function, and claudin-11 is disorganized in various human testicular disorders. These data support the Sertoli cell TJ as a potential site of hormonal contraceptive action. BTB proteins were assessed by immunohistochemistry (n = 16 samples) and mRNA (n = 18 samples) expression levels in available archived testis tissue from a previous study of 22 men who had undergone 8 weeks of gonadotropin suppression and for whom meiotic and post-meiotic germ cell numbers were available. The gonadotropin suppression regimens were (i) testosterone enanthate (TE) plus the GnRH antagonist, acyline (A); (ii) TE + the progestin, levonorgestrel, (LNG); (iii) TE + LNG + A or (iv) TE + LNG + the 5α-reductase inhibitor, dutasteride (D). A control group consisted of seven additional men, with three archived samples available for this study. Immunohistochemical localization of claudin-11 (TJ) and other junctional type markers [ZO-1 (cytoplasmic plaque), β-catenin (adherens junction), connexin-43 (gap junction), vinculin (ectoplasmic specialization) and β-actin (cytoskeleton)] and quantitative PCR was conducted using matched frozen testis tissue. Claudin-11 formed a continuous staining pattern at the BTB in control men. Regardless of gonadotropin suppression treatment, claudin-11 localization was markedly disrupted and was broadly associated with the extent of meiotic

  12. Enhancing light absorption within the carrier transport length in quantum junction solar cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Yulan; Hara, Yukihiro; Miller, Christopher W; Lopez, Rene

    2015-09-10

    Colloidal quantum dot (CQD) solar cells have attracted tremendous attention because of their tunable absorption spectrum window and potentially low processing cost. Recently reported quantum junction solar cells represent a promising approach to building a rectifying photovoltaic device that employs CQD layers on each side of the p-n junction. However, the ultimate efficiency of CQD solar cells is still highly limited by their high trap state density in both p- and n-type CQDs. By modeling photonic structures to enhance the light absorption within the carrier transport length and by ensuring that the carrier generation and collection efficiencies were both augmented, our work shows that overall device current density could be improved. We utilized a two-dimensional numerical model to calculate the characteristics of patterned CQD solar cells based on a simple grating structure. Our calculation predicts a short circuit current density as high as 31  mA/cm2, a value nearly 1.5 times larger than that of the conventional flat design, showing the great potential value of patterned quantum junction solar cells.

  13. Co-culture of neural crest stem cells (NCSC and insulin producing beta-TC6 cells results in cadherin junctions and protection against cytokine-induced beta-cell death.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anongnad Ngamjariyawat

    Full Text Available PURPOSE: Transplantation of pancreatic islets to Type 1 diabetes patients is hampered by inflammatory reactions at the transplantation site leading to dysfunction and death of insulin producing beta-cells. Recently we have shown that co-transplantation of neural crest stem cells (NCSCs together with the islet cells improves transplantation outcome. The aim of the present investigation was to describe in vitro interactions between NCSCs and insulin producing beta-TC6 cells that may mediate protection against cytokine-induced beta-cell death. PROCEDURES: Beta-TC6 and NCSC cells were cultured either alone or together, and either with or without cell culture inserts. The cultures were then exposed to the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and IFN-γ for 48 hours followed by analysis of cell death rates (flow cytometry, nitrite production (Griess reagent, protein localization (immunofluorescence and protein phosphorylation (flow cytometry. RESULTS: We observed that beta-TC6 cells co-cultured with NCSCs were protected against cytokine-induced cell death, but not when separated by cell culture inserts. This occurred in parallel with (i augmented production of nitrite from beta-TC6 cells, indicating that increased cell survival allows a sustained production of nitric oxide; (ii NCSC-derived laminin production; (iii decreased phospho-FAK staining in beta-TC6 cell focal adhesions, and (iv decreased beta-TC6 cell phosphorylation of ERK(T202/Y204, FAK(Y397 and FAK(Y576. Furthermore, co-culture also resulted in cadherin and beta-catenin accumulations at the NCSC/beta-TC6 cell junctions. Finally, the gap junction inhibitor carbenoxolone did not affect cytokine-induced beta-cell death during co-culture with NCSCs. CONCLUSION: In summary, direct contacts, but not soluble factors, promote improved beta-TC6 viability when co-cultured with NCSCs. We hypothesize that cadherin junctions between NCSC and beta-TC6 cells promote powerful signals that maintain beta-cell

  14. Charge separation dynamics in a narrow band gap polymer-PbS nanocrystal blend for efficient hybrid solar cells

    OpenAIRE

    Piliego, Claudia; Manca, Marianna; Kroon, Renee; Yarema, Maksym; Szendrei, Krisztina; Andersson, Mats R.; Heiss, Wolfgang; Loi, Maria A.

    2012-01-01

    We have demonstrated efficient hybrid solar cells based on lead sulfide (PbS) nanocrystals and a narrow band gap polymer, poly[{2,5-bis(2-hexyldecyl)-2,3,5,6-tetrahydro-3,6-dioxopyrrolo[3,4-c]pyrrole-1,4-diyl}-alt-{[2,2'-(1,4-phenylene)bis-thiophene]-5,5'-diyl}], (PDPPTPT). An opportune mixing of the two materials led to the formation of an energetically favorable bulk hetero-junction with a broad spectral response. Using a basic device structure, we reached a power conversion efficiency of s...

  15. Gradual nerve elongation affects nerve cell bodies and neuro-muscular junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazuo Ikeda, K I; Masaki Matsuda, M M; Daisuke Yamauchi, D Y; Katsuro Tomita, K T; Shigenori Tanaka, S T

    2005-07-01

    The purpose of this study is to clarify the reactions of the neuro-muscular junction and nerve cell body to gradual nerve elongation. The sciatic nerves of Japanese white rabbits were lengthened by 30 mm in increments of 0.8 mm/day, 2.0 mm/day and 4.0 mm/day. A scanning electron microscopic examination showed no degenerative change at the neuro-muscular junction, even eight weeks after elongation in the 4-mm group. Hence, neuro-muscular junction is not critical for predicting damage from gradual nerve elongation. There were no axon reaction cells in the 0.8-mm group, a small amount in the 2-mm group, and a large amount in the 4-mm group. The rate of growth associated protein-43 positive nerve cells was significant in the 4-mm group. Hence, the safe speed for nerve cells appeared to be 0.8-mm/day, critical speed to be 2.0-mm/day, and dangerous speed to be 4.0-mm/day in this elongation model.

  16. P-N junction solar cell grown by molecular beam epitaxy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hazrati Fard, M.

    2001-01-01

    Growth of GaAs epilayers by Molecular Beam Epitaxy was accomplished for the first time in Iran. The layers were grown on GaAs (001) substrates (p+ wafer) with Si impurity for p n junction solar cell fabrication at a rate of nearly one micron per hour and 0.25 micron per quarter. Crystalline quality of grown layers had been monitored during growth by Reflection High Energy Electron Diffraction system. Doping profile and layer thickness was assessed by electrochemical C-V profiling method. Then Hall measurements were conducted on small samples both in room temperature and liquid nitrogen temperature so giving average carrier concentration and compensation ratio. The results as like: V oc , I sc , F F, η were comparable with other laboratory reports. information for obtaining good and repeatable growths was collected. Therefore, the conditions of repeatable quality growth p n junction solar cells onto GaAs (001) substrates were determined

  17. Sodium caprate transiently opens claudin-5-containing barriers at tight junctions of epithelial and endothelial cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Del Vecchio, Giovanna; Tscheik, Christian; Tenz, Kareen

    2012-01-01

    Claudin-5 is a tight junction (TJ) protein which limits the diffusion of small hydrophilic molecules. Thus, it represents a potential pharmacological target to improve drug delivery to the tissues protected by claudin-5-dependent barriers. Sodium caprate is known as an absorption enhancer which...... opens the paracellular space acting on TJ proteins and actin cytoskeleton. Its action on claudin-5 is not understood so far. Epithelial and endothelial systems were used to evaluate the effect of caprate on claudin-5 in TJ-free cells and on claudin-5 fully integrated in TJ. To this aim, confocal...... of endothelial and epithelial cells. In conclusion, the study further elucidates the cellular effects of caprate at the tight junctions....

  18. Modeling and Simulation of a Dual-Junction CIGS Solar Cell Using Silvaco ATLAS

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-12-01

    stage process, thermal evaporation, electrodeposition , deposition temperatures, content, stoichiometry and composition range on CIGS, inducing in...mesh. This location can be any specific region, and for the purposes of this thesis, a pair of cathode , and anode electrodes was assigned in the two...ATLASTM structure file for the dual-junction CIGS cell. In order to extract an overall I–V curve, two sets of anodes and cathodes were placed on the

  19. Tuning of optical and electrical properties of wide band gap Fe:SnO{sub 2}/Li:NiO p-n junctions using 80 MeV oxygen ion beam

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mistry, Bhaumik V.; Joshi, U.S. [Gujarat University, Department of Physics, School of Sciences, Ahmedabad (India); Avasthi, D.K. [Inter University Accelerator Centre, New Delhi (India)

    2016-12-15

    Electrical and optical properties of pristine and swift heavy ion (SHI) irradiated p-n junction diode have been investigated for advanced electronics application. Fe:SnO{sub 2}/Li:NiO p-n junction was fabricated by using pulsed laser deposition on c-sapphire substrate. The optical band gaps of Fe:SnO{sub 2} and Li:NiO films were obtained to be 3.88 and 3.37 eV, respectively. The current-voltage characteristics of the oxide-based p-n junction showed a rectifying behaviour with turn-on voltage of 0.95 V. The oxide-based p-n junction diode was irradiated to 80 MeV O{sup +6} ions with 1 x 10{sup 12} ions/cm{sup 2} fluence. Decrease in grain size due to SHI irradiation is confirmed by the grazing angle X-ray diffraction and atomic force microscopy. In comparison with the pristine p-n junction diode, O{sup +6} ion irradiated p-n junction diode shows the increase of surface roughness and decrease of percentage transmittance in visible region. For irradiated p-n junction diode, current-voltage curve has still rectifying behaviour but exhibits lower turn-on voltage than that of virgin p-n junction diode. (orig.)

  20. Transforming growth factor beta 1 modulates extracellular matrix organization and cell-cell junctional complex formation during in vitro angiogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merwin, J R; Anderson, J M; Kocher, O; Van Itallie, C M; Madri, J A

    1990-01-01

    Transforming growth factor-beta 1 (TGF-beta 1) is angiogenic in vivo. In two-dimensional (2-D) culture systems microvascular endothelial cell proliferation is inhibited up to 80% by TGF-beta 1; however, in three-dimensional (3-D) collagen gels TGF-beta 1 is found to have no effect on proliferation while eliciting the formation of calcium and magnesium dependent tube-like structures mimicking angiogenesis. DNA analyses performed on 3-D cell cultures reveal no significant difference in the amount of DNA or cell number in control versus TGF-beta 1 treated cultures. In 2-D cultures TGF-beta 1 is known to increase cellular fibronectin accumulation; however, in 3-D cultures no difference is seen between control and TGF-beta 1 treated cells as established by ELISA testing for type IV collagen, fibronectin, and laminin. In 3-D cultures there is increased synthesis and secretion of type V collagen in both control and TGF-beta 1 treated cultures over 2-D cultures. Even though an equal amount of type V collagen is seen in both 3-D conditions, there is a reorganization of the protein with concentration along an organizing basal lamina in TGF-beta 1 treated cultures. EM morphological analyses on 3-D cultures illustrate quiescent, control cells lacking cell contacts. In contrast, TGF-beta 1 treated cells show increased pseudopod formation, cell-cell contact, and organized basal lamina-like material closely apposed to the "abluminal" plasma membranes. TGF-beta 1 treated cells also appear to form junctional complexes between adjoining cells. Immunofluorescence using specific antibodies to the tight junction protein ZO-1 results in staining at apparent cell-cell junctions in the 3-D cultures. Northern blots of freshly isolated microvascular endothelium, 2-D and 3-D cultures, using cDNA and cRNA probes specific for the ZO-1 tight junction protein, reveal the presence of the 7.8 kb mRNA. Western blots of rat epididymal fat pad endothelial cells (RFC) monolayer lysates probed with

  1. Tumor necrosis factor alpha increases epithelial barrier permeability by disrupting tight junctions in Caco-2 cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. Cui

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available The objectives of this study were to determine the effect of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α on intestinal epithelial cell permeability and the expression of tight junction proteins. Caco-2 cells were plated onto Transwell® microporous filters and treated with TNF-α (10 or 100 ng/mL for 0, 4, 8, 16, or 24 h. The transepithelial electrical resistance and the mucosal-to-serosal flux rates of the established paracellular marker Lucifer yellow were measured in filter-grown monolayers of Caco-2 intestinal cells. The localization and expression of the tight junction protein occludin were detected by immunofluorescence and Western blot analysis, respectively. SYBR-Green-based real-time PCR was used to measure the expression of occludin mRNA. TNF-α treatment produced concentration- and time-dependent decreases in Caco-2 transepithelial resistance and increases in transepithelial permeability to the paracellular marker Lucifer yellow. Western blot results indicated that TNF-α decreased the expression of phosphorylated occludin in detergent-insoluble fractions but did not affect the expression of non-phosphorylated occludin protein. Real-time RT-PCR data showed that TNF-α did not affect the expression of occludin mRNA. Taken together, our data demonstrate that TNF-α increases Caco-2 monolayer permeability, decreases occludin protein expression and disturbs intercellular junctions.

  2. Basic aspects for improving the energy conversion efficiency of hetero-junction organic photovoltaic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryuzaki, Sou; Onoe, Jun

    2013-01-01

    Hetero-junction organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells consisting of donor (D) and acceptor (A) layers have been regarded as next-generation PV cells, because of their fascinating advantages, such as lightweight, low fabrication cost, resource free, and flexibility, when compared to those of conventional PV cells based on silicon and semiconductor compounds. However, the power conversion efficiency (η) of the OPV cells has been still around 8%, though more than 10% efficiency has been required for their practical use. To fully optimize these OPV cells, it is necessary that the low mobility of carriers/excitons in the OPV cells and the open circuit voltage (V OC), of which origin has not been understood well, should be improved. In this review, we address an improvement of the mobility of carriers/excitons by controlling the crystal structure of a donor layer and address how to increase the V OC for zinc octaethylporphyrin [Zn(OEP)]/C60 hetero-junction OPV cells [ITO/Zn(OEP)/C60/Al]. It was found that crystallization of Zn(OEP) films increases the number of inter-molecular charge transfer (IMCT) excitons and enlarges the mobility of carriers and IMCT excitons, thus significantly improving the external quantum efficiency (EQE) under illumination of the photoabsorption band due to the IMCT excitons. Conversely, charge accumulation of photo-generated carriers in the vicinity of the donor/acceptor (D/A) interface was found to play a key role in determining the V OC for the OPV cells.

  3. HIV-associated disruption of tight and adherens junctions of oral epithelial cells facilitates HSV-1 infection and spread.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irna Sufiawati

    Full Text Available Herpes simplex virus (HSV types 1 and 2 are the most common opportunistic infections in HIV/AIDS. In these immunocompromised individuals, HSV-1 reactivates and replicates in oral epithelium, leading to oral disorders such as ulcers, gingivitis, and necrotic lesions. Although the increased risk of HSV infection may be mediated in part by HIV-induced immune dysfunction, direct or indirect interactions of HIV and HSV at the molecular level may also play a role. In this report we show that prolonged interaction of the HIV proteins tat and gp120 and cell-free HIV virions with polarized oral epithelial cells leads to disruption of tight and adherens junctions of epithelial cells through the mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling pathway. HIV-induced disruption of oral epithelial junctions facilitates HSV-1 paracellular spread between the epithelial cells. Furthermore, HIV-associated disruption of adherens junctions exposes sequestered nectin-1, an adhesion protein and critical receptor for HSV envelope glycoprotein D (gD. Exposure of nectin-1 facilitates binding of HSV-1 gD, which substantially increases HSV-1 infection of epithelial cells with disrupted junctions over that of cells with intact junctions. Exposed nectin-1 from disrupted adherens junctions also increases the cell-to-cell spread of HSV-1 from infected to uninfected oral epithelial cells. Antibodies to nectin-1 and HSV-1 gD substantially reduce HSV-1 infection and cell-to-cell spread, indicating that HIV-promoted HSV infection and spread are mediated by the interaction of HSV gD with HIV-exposed nectin-1. Our data suggest that HIV-associated disruption of oral epithelial junctions may potentiate HSV-1 infection and its paracellular and cell-to-cell spread within the oral mucosal epithelium. This could be one of the possible mechanisms of rapid development of HSV-associated oral lesions in HIV-infected individuals.

  4. Multilayer Antireflection Coating for Triple Junction Solar Cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhan Feng; Wang Hai-Li; He Ji-Fang; Wang Juan; Huang She-Song; Ni Hi-Qiao; Niu Zhi-Chuan

    2011-01-01

    According to the theory of optical films, we simulate the reflectivity of antireflection coatings (ARCs) for solar cells of Ga 0.5 In 0.5 P/GaAs/Ge based on an optical transfer matrix. In order to provide sufficient consideration of the refractive index dispersion effect of multilayer ARCs, we use multi-dimensional matrix data for reliable simulation. After the reflection curves are obtained, the effective average reflectance R e is introduced to optimize the film system by minimizing R e . Optimization of single layer (Al 2 O 3 ), double layer (MgF 2 /ZnS) and triple layer (MgF 2 /Al 2 O 3 /ZnS) ARCs is realized by using this method for space and terrestrial applications. Effects of these ARCs are compared after optimization. These theoretical parameters can be used to guide experiments. (condensed matter: electronic structure, electrical, magnetic, and optical properties)

  5. From 1 Sun to 10 Suns c-Si Cells by Optimizing Metal Grid, Metal Resistance, and Junction Depth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaudhari, V.A.; Solanki, C.S.

    2009-01-01

    Use of a solar cell in concentrator PV technology requires reduction in its series resistance in order to minimize the resistive power losses. The present paper discusses a methodology of reducing the series resistance of a commercial c-Si solar cell for concentrator applications, in the range of 2 to 10 suns. Step by step optimization of commercial cell in terms of grid geometry, junction depth, and electroplating of the front metal contacts is proposed. A model of resistance network of solar cell is developed and used for the optimization. Efficiency of un optimized commercial cell at 10 suns drops by 30% of its 1 sun value corresponding to resistive power loss of about 42%. The optimized cell with grid optimization, junction optimization, electroplating, and junction optimized with electroplated contacts cell gives resistive power loss of 20%, 16%, 11%, and 8%, respectively. An efficiency gain of 3% at 10 suns for fully optimized cell is estimated

  6. Gap junctions and hydrogen peroxide are involved in endothelium-derived hyperpolarising responses to bradykinin in omental arteries and veins isolated from pregnant women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammond, Stephanie; Mathewson, Alastair M; Baker, Philip N; Mayhew, Terry M; Dunn, William R

    2011-10-01

    Altered endothelial function may underlie human cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension, diabetes and pre-eclampsia. While much is known about endothelial function in small arteries, very little is known about endothelial responses in small veins isolated from humans. Therefore, we assessed endothelium-dependent responses in omental arteries and veins isolated from healthy pregnant women, focussing on endothelium-dependent hyperpolarising (EDH) mechanisms. Human omental arteries and veins were obtained from women undergoing elective caesarean sections and examined using pressure myography. In pressurised vessels, the effects of proposed inhibitors of EDH production/function were examined on responses to bradykinin. The expression of connexins Cx37, 40 and 43 was assessed using immunohistochemistry. Bradykinin caused vasodilatation in human pressurised omental arteries and veins. In both vessels, responses to bradykinin were partially blocked in the presence of the gap junction uncoupler, carbenoxolone, and reduced further with the addition of catalase, which acts to degrade H(2)O(2). The effect of catalase alone was more pronounced in venous preparations. All three connexins were expressed in both arteries and veins, with a similar distribution pattern, where Cx37 and Cx40 were located mainly in the endothelium and Cx43 located mostly in the media. These data show that, in human omental vessels, an EDH mechanism is produced in response to bradykinin that involves gap junction communication and the production of H(2)O(2). These mechanisms may be involved in the haemodynamic alterations that take place during pregnancy, and any aberration in their function could contribute to raised blood pressure in hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, such as pre-eclampsia. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Effect of cAMP derivates on assembly and maintenance of tight junctions in human umbilical vein endothelial cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beese Michaela

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Endothelial tight and adherens junctions control a variety of physiological processes like adhesion, paracellular transport of solutes or trafficking of activated leukocytes. Formation and maintenance of endothelial junctions largely depend on the microenvironment of the specific vascular bed and on interactions of the endothelium with adjacent cell types. Consequently, primary cultures of endothelial cells often lose their specific junctional pattern and fail to establish tight monolayer in vitro. This is also true for endothelial cells isolated from the vein of human umbilical cords (HUVEC which are widely used as model for endothelial cell-related studies. Results We here compared the effect of cyclic 3'-5'-adenosine monophosphate (cAMP and its derivates on formation and stabilization of tight junctions and on alterations in paracellular permeability in HUVEC. We demonstrated by light and confocal laser microscopy that for shorter time periods the sodium salt of 8-bromoadenosine-cAMP (8-Br-cAMP/Na and for longer incubation periods 8-(4-chlorophenylthio-cAMP (pCPT-cAMP exerted the greatest effects of all compounds tested here on formation of continuous tight junction strands in HUVEC. We further demonstrated that although all compounds induced protein kinase A-dependent expression of the tight junction proteins claudin-5 and occludin only pCPT-cAMP slightly enhanced paracellular barrier functions. Moreover, we showed that pCPT-cAMP and 8-Br-cAMP/Na induced expression and membrane translocation of tricellulin. Conclusions pCPT-cAMP and, to a lesser extend, 8-Br-cAMP/Na improved formation of continuous tight junction strands and decreased paracellular permeability in primary HUVEC. We concluded that under these conditions HUVEC represent a feasible in vitro model to study formation and disassembly of endothelial tight junctions and to characterize tight junction-associated proteins

  8. Cdc42 is crucial for the maturation of primordial cell junctions in keratinocytes independent of Rac1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Du, Dan; Pedersen, Esben; Wang, Zhipeng

    2008-01-01

    Cell-cell contacts are crucial for the integrity of all tissues. Contrasting reports have been published about the role of Cdc42 in epithelial cell-cell contacts in vitro. In keratinocytes, it was suggested that Rac1 and not Cdc42 is crucial for the formation of mature epithelial junctions, based...... on dominant negative inhibition experiments. Deletion of the Cdc42 gene in keratinocytes in vivo slowly impaired the maintenance of cell-cell contacts by an increased degradation of beta-catenin. Whether Cdc42 is required for the formation of mature junctions was not tested. We show now that Cdc42-deficient...... immortalized and primary keratinocytes form only punctate primordial cell contacts in vitro, which cannot mature into belt-like junctions. This defect was independent of enhanced degradation of beta-catenin, but correlated to an impaired activation and localization of aPKCzeta in the Cdc42-null keratinocytes...

  9. Surfing the wave, cycle, life history, and genes/proteins expressed by testicular germ cells. Part 5: intercellular junctions and contacts between germs cells and Sertoli cells and their regulatory interactions, testicular cholesterol, and genes/proteins associated with more than one germ cell generation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermo, Louis; Pelletier, R-Marc; Cyr, Daniel G; Smith, Charles E

    2010-04-01

    In the testis, cell adhesion and junctional molecules permit specific interactions and intracellular communication between germ and Sertoli cells and apposed Sertoli cells. Among the many adhesion family of proteins, NCAM, nectin and nectin-like, catenins, and cadherens will be discussed, along with gap junctions between germ and Sertoli cells and the many members of the connexin family. The blood-testis barrier separates the haploid spermatids from blood borne elements. In the barrier, the intercellular junctions consist of many proteins such as occludin, tricellulin, and claudins. Changes in the expression of cell adhesion molecules are also an essential part of the mechanism that allows germ cells to move from the basal compartment of the seminiferous tubule to the adluminal compartment thus crossing the blood-testis barrier and well-defined proteins have been shown to assist in this process. Several structural components show interactions between germ cells to Sertoli cells such as the ectoplasmic specialization which are more closely related to Sertoli cells and tubulobulbar complexes that are processes of elongating spermatids embedded into Sertoli cells. Germ cells also modify several Sertoli functions and this also appears to be the case for residual bodies. Cholesterol plays a significant role during spermatogenesis and is essential for germ cell development. Lastly, we list genes/proteins that are expressed not only in any one specific generation of germ cells but across more than one generation. Copyright 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  10. Modeling and Design of a New Flexible Graphene-on-Silicon Schottky Junction Solar Cell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesco Dell’Olio

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available A new graphene-based flexible solar cell with a power conversion efficiency >10% has been designed. The environmental stability and the low complexity of the fabrication process are the two main advantages of the proposed device with respect to other flexible solar cells. The designed solar cell is a graphene/silicon Schottky junction whose performance has been enhanced by a graphene oxide layer deposited on the graphene sheet. The effect of the graphene oxide is to dope the graphene and to act as anti-reflection coating. A silicon dioxide ultrathin layer interposed between the n-Si and the graphene increases the open-circuit voltage of the cell. The solar cell optimization has been achieved through a mathematical model, which has been validated by using experimental data reported in literature. The new flexible photovoltaic device can be integrated in a wide range of microsystems powered by solar energy.

  11. Uterine inactivation of muscle segment homeobox (Msx) genes alters epithelial cell junction proteins during embryo implantation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xiaofei; Park, Craig B; Deng, Wenbo; Potter, S Steven; Dey, Sudhansu K

    2016-04-01

    Embryo implantation requires that the uterus differentiate into the receptive state. Failure to attain uterine receptivity will impede blastocyst attachment and result in a compromised pregnancy. The molecular mechanism by which the uterus transitions from the prereceptive to the receptive stage is complex, involving an intricate interplay of various molecules. We recently found that mice with uterine deletion ofMsxgenes (Msx1(d/d)/Msx2(d/d)) are infertile because of implantation failure associated with heightened apicobasal polarity of luminal epithelial cells during the receptive period. However, information on Msx's roles in regulating epithelial polarity remains limited. To gain further insight, we analyzed cell-type-specific gene expression by RNA sequencing of separated luminal epithelial and stromal cells by laser capture microdissection fromMsx1(d/d)/Msx2(d/d)and floxed mouse uteri on d 4 of pseudopregnancy. We found that claudin-1, a tight junction protein, and small proline-rich (Sprr2) protein, a major component of cornified envelopes in keratinized epidermis, were substantially up-regulated inMsx1(d/d)/Msx2(d/d)uterine epithelia. These factors also exhibited unique epithelial expression patterns at the implantation chamber (crypt) inMsx1(f/f)/Msx2(f/f)females; the patterns were lost inMsx1(d/d)/Msx2(d/d)epithelia on d 5, suggesting important roles during implantation. The results suggest thatMsxgenes play important roles during uterine receptivity including modulation of epithelial junctional activity.-Sun, X., Park, C. B., Deng, W., Potter, S. S., Dey, S. K. Uterine inactivation of muscle segment homeobox (Msx) genes alters epithelial cell junction proteins during embryo implantation. © FASEB.

  12. Origin of the Degradation of Triple Junction Solar Cells at low Temperature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Park Seonyong

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The degradation of solar cells under irradiation by high energy particles (electrons, protons is the consequence of the introduction of defects trapping minority carriers, which are then not collected by the junction. However, at low temperature, defects located in the space charge region can also induce a tunneling current that results in an apparent decreases of the maximum power. The degradation produced by this tunneling current can depend on temperature, since the concentration of defects created by an irradiation is usually temperature dependent, and can be larger than the degradation associated with carrier recombination. For instance, as we shall see below, an irradiation with 1 MeV electrons at 120 K with a fluence of 3.0 × 1015 /cm2 induces a decrease of less than 10 % in the short-circuit current (Isc and open-circuit voltage (Voc of triple junction (TJ cells, but a decrease of about 40 % in the maximum power (Pmax, which implies that more than half of the total degradation of Pmax should be assigned to another loss mechanism, tunneling in this case. In this work, we demonstrate that this additional degradation must indeed be ascribed to a tunneling process and we investigate the variation of the tunneling current versus fluence induced by electron irradiation in TJ cells, in order to tentatively ascribe the tunneling components to specific sub-cells.

  13. Radiation resistant low bandgap InGaAsP solar cell for multi-junction solar cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, Aurangzeb; Yamaguchi, Masafumi; Dharmaras, Nathaji; Yamada, Takashi; Tanabe, Tatsuya; Takagishi, Shigenori; Itoh, Hisayoshi; Ohshima, Takeshi

    2001-01-01

    We have explored the superior radiation tolerance of metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) grown, low bandgap, (0.95eV) InGaAsP solar cells as compared to GaAs-on-Ge cells, after 1 MeV electron irradiation. The minority carrier injection due to forward bias and light illumination under low concentration ratio, can lead to enhanced recovery of radiation damage in InGaAsP n + -p junction solar cells. An injection anneal activation energy (0.58eV) of the defects involved in damage/recovery of the InGaAsP solar cells has been estimated from the resultant recovery of the solar cell properties following minority carrier injection. The results suggest that low bandgap radiation resistant InGaAsP (0.95eV) lattice matched to InP substrates provide an alternative to use as bottom cells in multi-junction solar cells instead of less radiation ressitant conventional GaAs based solar cells for space applications. (author)

  14. Stem cell-derived neurotrophic support for the neuromuscular junction in spinal muscular atrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyatt, Tanya J; Keirstead, Hans S

    2010-11-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by specific degeneration of α-motor neurons in the spinal cord. The use of cell transplantation to restore lost function through cell replacement or prevent further degeneration of motor neurons and synapses through neurotrophic support heralds tremendous hope in the SMA field. Much research has been carried out in the last decade on the use of embryonic stem cells in cell replacement strategies for various neurodegenerative diseases. Cell replacement is contingent on the ability of transplanted cells to integrate and form new functional connections with host cells. In the case of SMA, cell replacement is a tall order in that axons of transplanted cells would be required to grow over long distances from the spinal cord through growth-averse terrain to synapse with muscles in the periphery. The efficacy of neurotrophic support is contingent on the ability of transplanted cells to secrete neurotrophins appropriate for degenerating motor neurons in the spinal cord or development/stability of the neuromuscular junction (NMJ) in the periphery. The reader will gain an understanding of the potential of neurotrophins to promote development of the NMJ in a diseased or injured environment. Neurotrophins play a major role in NMJ development and thus may be a key factor in the pathogenesis of NMJs in SMA. Further research into the signaling mechanisms involved in NMJ maturation may identify additional mechanisms by which transplanted cells may be of therapeutic benefit.

  15. Space Photovoltaic Concentrator Using Robust Fresnel Lenses, 4-Junction Cells, Graphene Radiators, and Articulating Receivers

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Mark; McDanal, A. J.; Brandhorst, Henry; Spence, Brian; Iqbal, Shawn; Sharps, Paul; McPheeters, Clay; Steinfeldt, Jeff; Piszczor, Michael; Myers, Matt

    2016-01-01

    At the 42nd PVSC, our team presented recent advances in our space photovoltaic concentrator technology. These advances include more robust Fresnel lenses for optical concentration, more thermally conductive graphene radiators for waste heat rejection, improved color-mixing lens technology to minimize chromatic aberration losses with 4-junction solar cells, and an articulating photovoltaic receiver enabling single-axis sun-tracking, while maintaining a sharp focal line despite large beta angles of incidence. In the past year, under a NASA Phase II SBIR program, our team has made much additional progress in the development of this new space photovoltaic concentrator technology, as described in this paper.

  16. Correlative microscopy of radial junction nanowire solar cells using nanoindent position markers

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fejfar, Antonín; Hývl, Matěj; Vetushka, Aliaksi; Pikna, Peter; Hájková, Zdeňka; Ledinský, Martin; Kočka, Jan; Klapetek, P.; Marek, A.; Mašková, A.; Vyskočil, J.; Merkel, J.; Becker, Ch.; Itoh, T.; Misra, S.; Foldyna, M.; Yu, L.; Roca i Cabarrocas, P.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 135, SI (2015), s. 106-112 ISSN 0927-0248 R&D Projects: GA MŠk 7E10061; GA MŠk(CZ) LM2011026; GA ČR GA13-12386S EU Projects: European Commission(XE) 240826 - PolySiMode Grant - others:AVČR(CZ) M100101216; AVČR(CZ) M100101217 Institutional support: RVO:68378271 Keywords : radial junction solar cells * silicon nanowires * thin films * structural disorder * conductive AFM * nanoindentation * correlative microscopy Subject RIV: BM - Solid Matter Physics ; Magnetism Impact factor: 4.732, year: 2015

  17. Investigating inhomogeneous electronic properties of radial junction solar cells using correlative microscopy

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Müller, Martin; Hývl, Matěj; Kratzer, M.; Teichert, C.; Misra, S.; Foldyna, M.; Yu, L.; Roca i Cabarrocas, P.; Itoh, T.; Hájková, Zdeňka; Vetushka, Aliaksi; Ledinský, Martin; Kočka, Jan; Fejfar, Antonín

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 54, č. 8 (2015), "08KA08-1"-"08KA08-5" ISSN 0021-4922 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA14-15357S; GA MŠk(CZ) 7AMB14ATE004; GA ČR GA13-25747S; GA ČR GA13-12386S; GA MŠk(CZ) LM2011026; GA ČR GB14-37427G Grant - others:AVČR(CZ) M100101217 Institutional support: RVO:68378271 Keywords : solar cells * radial junctions * silicon nanowires * correlative microscopy Subject RIV: BM - Solid Matter Physics ; Magnetism Impact factor: 1.122, year: 2015

  18. Realization of p-n junction solar cells by an ion implantation doping procedure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muller, J.C.; Hage-Ali, M.; Siffert, P.

    1978-01-01

    The possibility of using a low cost ion implantation procedure for the preparation of junction solar cells has been investigated. The method employs a d.c. glow discharge ion source and a short post acceleration structure, without any mass separation. Preparation of the cells in a continuous way is possible at competitive speeds since the ion beam current density reaches 1 mA/cm 2 . The properties of silicon cells, obtained by discharge bombardment in BF 3 or PF 5 atmosphere followed by recristallisation of the damaged layer either by thermal annealing or fast surface laser pulses, have been investigated. Rutherford backscattering, SIMS, electrical measurements have been used. Finally, characteristics and performance of the devices are presented

  19. Particulate matter air pollution disrupts endothelial cell barrier via calpain-mediated tight junction protein degradation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Ting

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Exposure to particulate matter (PM is a significant risk factor for increased cardiopulmonary morbidity and mortality. The mechanism of PM-mediated pathophysiology remains unknown. However, PM is proinflammatory to the endothelium and increases vascular permeability in vitro and in vivo via ROS generation. Objectives We explored the role of tight junction proteins as targets for PM-induced loss of lung endothelial cell (EC barrier integrity and enhanced cardiopulmonary dysfunction. Methods Changes in human lung EC monolayer permeability were assessed by Transendothelial Electrical Resistance (TER in response to PM challenge (collected from Ft. McHenry Tunnel, Baltimore, MD, particle size >0.1 μm. Biochemical assessment of ROS generation and Ca2+ mobilization were also measured. Results PM exposure induced tight junction protein Zona occludens-1 (ZO-1 relocation from the cell periphery, which was accompanied by significant reductions in ZO-1 protein levels but not in adherens junction proteins (VE-cadherin and β-catenin. N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC, 5 mM reduced PM-induced ROS generation in ECs, which further prevented TER decreases and atteneuated ZO-1 degradation. PM also mediated intracellular calcium mobilization via the transient receptor potential cation channel M2 (TRPM2, in a ROS-dependent manner with subsequent activation of the Ca2+-dependent protease calpain. PM-activated calpain is responsible for ZO-1 degradation and EC barrier disruption. Overexpression of ZO-1 attenuated PM-induced endothelial barrier disruption and vascular hyperpermeability in vivo and in vitro. Conclusions These results demonstrate that PM induces marked increases in vascular permeability via ROS-mediated calcium leakage via activated TRPM2, and via ZO-1 degradation by activated calpain. These findings support a novel mechanism for PM-induced lung damage and adverse cardiovascular outcomes.

  20. Triptolide disrupts the actin-based Sertoli-germ cells adherens junctions by inhibiting Rho GTPases expression

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Xiang; Zhao, Fang [Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Drug Screening, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009 (China); Lv, Zhong-ming; Shi, Wei-qin [Jiangsu Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Nanjing (China); Zhang, Lu-yong, E-mail: lyzhang@cpu.edu.cn [Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Drug Screening, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009 (China); Key Laboratory of Drug Quality Control and Pharmacovigilance, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing (China); State Key Laboratory of Natural Medicines, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009 (China); Yan, Ming, E-mail: brookming@cpu.edu.cn [Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Drug Screening, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009 (China)

    2016-11-01

    Triptolide (TP), derived from the medicinal plant Triterygium wilfordii Hook. f. (TWHF), is a diterpene triepoxide with variety biological and pharmacological activities. However, TP has been restricted in clinical application due to its narrow therapeutic window especially in reproductive system. During spermatogenesis, Sertoli cell cytoskeleton plays an essential role in facilitating germ cell movement and cell-cell actin-based adherens junctions (AJ). At Sertoli cell-spermatid interface, the anchoring device is a kind of AJ, known as ectoplasmic specializations (ES). In this study, we demonstrate that β-actin, an important component of cytoskeleton, has been significantly down-regulated after TP treatment. TP can inhibit the expression of Rho GTPase such as, RhoA, RhoB, Cdc42 and Rac1. Downstream of Rho GTPase, Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCKs) gene expressions were also suppressed by TP. F-actin immunofluorescence proved that TP disrupts Sertoli cells cytoskeleton network. As a result of β-actin down-regulation, TP treatment increased expression of testin, which indicating ES has been disassembled. In summary, this report illustrates that TP induces cytoskeleton dysfunction and disrupts cell-cell adherens junctions via inhibition of Rho GTPases. - Highlights: • Triptolide induced the disruption of Sertoli-germ cell adherens junction. • Rho GTPases expression and actin dynamics have been suppressed by triptolide. • Actin-based adherens junction is a potential antifertility target of triptolide. • Rho-Rock is involved in the regulation of actin dynamics.

  1. Triptolide disrupts the actin-based Sertoli-germ cells adherens junctions by inhibiting Rho GTPases expression

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Xiang; Zhao, Fang; Lv, Zhong-ming; Shi, Wei-qin; Zhang, Lu-yong; Yan, Ming

    2016-01-01

    Triptolide (TP), derived from the medicinal plant Triterygium wilfordii Hook. f. (TWHF), is a diterpene triepoxide with variety biological and pharmacological activities. However, TP has been restricted in clinical application due to its narrow therapeutic window especially in reproductive system. During spermatogenesis, Sertoli cell cytoskeleton plays an essential role in facilitating germ cell movement and cell-cell actin-based adherens junctions (AJ). At Sertoli cell-spermatid interface, the anchoring device is a kind of AJ, known as ectoplasmic specializations (ES). In this study, we demonstrate that β-actin, an important component of cytoskeleton, has been significantly down-regulated after TP treatment. TP can inhibit the expression of Rho GTPase such as, RhoA, RhoB, Cdc42 and Rac1. Downstream of Rho GTPase, Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCKs) gene expressions were also suppressed by TP. F-actin immunofluorescence proved that TP disrupts Sertoli cells cytoskeleton network. As a result of β-actin down-regulation, TP treatment increased expression of testin, which indicating ES has been disassembled. In summary, this report illustrates that TP induces cytoskeleton dysfunction and disrupts cell-cell adherens junctions via inhibition of Rho GTPases. - Highlights: • Triptolide induced the disruption of Sertoli-germ cell adherens junction. • Rho GTPases expression and actin dynamics have been suppressed by triptolide. • Actin-based adherens junction is a potential antifertility target of triptolide. • Rho-Rock is involved in the regulation of actin dynamics.

  2. Claudin-11 and occludin are major contributors to Sertoli cell tight junction function, in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark J McCabe

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The Sertoli cell tight junction (TJ is the key component of the blood-testis barrier, where it sequesters developing germ cells undergoing spermatogenesis within the seminiferous tubules. Hormonally regulated claudin-11 is a critical transmembrane protein involved in barrier function and its murine knockout results in infertility. We aimed to assess quantitatively the significance of the contribution of claudin-11 to TJ function, in vitro, using siRNA-mediated gene silencing. We also conducted an analysis of the contribution of occludin, another intrinsic transmembrane protein of the TJ. Silencing of claudin-11 and/or occludin was conducted using siRNA in an immature rat Sertoli cell culture model. Transepithelial electrical resistance was used to assess quantitatively TJ function throughout the culture. Two days after siRNA treatment, cells were fixed for immunocytochemical localization of junction proteins or lyzed for RT-PCR assessment of mRNA expression. Silencing of claudin-11, occludin, or both resulted in significant decreases in TJ function of 55% (P < 0.01, 51% (P < 0.01, and 62% (P < 0.01, respectively. Data were concomitant with significant decreases in mRNA expression and marked reductions in the localization of targeted proteins to the Sertoli cell TJ. We provide quantitative evidence that claudin-11 contributes significantly (P < 0.01 to Sertoli cell TJ function in vitro. Interestingly, occludin, which is hormonally regulated but not implicated in infertility until late adulthood, is also a significant (P < 0.01 contributor to barrier function. Our data are consistent with in vivo studies that clearly demonstrate a role for these proteins in maintaining normal TJ barrier structure and function.

  3. Mast Cell Tryptase Reduces Junctional Adhesion Molecule-A (JAM-A) Expression in Intestinal Epithelial Cells: Implications for the Mechanisms of Barrier Dysfunction in Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Wilcz-Villega, Ewa M

    2013-07-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate how mast cell tryptase may influence intestinal permeability and tight junction (TJ) proteins in vitro and explore translation to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

  4. High-Efficiency Silicon/Organic Heterojunction Solar Cells with Improved Junction Quality and Interface Passivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Jian; Gao, Pingqi; Ling, Zhaoheng; Ding, Li; Yang, Zhenhai; Ye, Jichun; Cui, Yi

    2016-12-27

    Silicon/organic heterojunction solar cells (HSCs) based on conjugated polymers, poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS), and n-type silicon (n-Si) have attracted wide attention due to their potential advantages of high efficiency and low cost. However, the state-of-the-art efficiencies are still far from satisfactory due to the inferior junction quality. Here, facile treatments were applied by pretreating the n-Si wafer in tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAH) solution and using a capping copper iodide (CuI) layer on the PEDOT:PSS layer to achieve a high-quality Schottky junction. Detailed photoelectric characteristics indicated that the surface recombination was greatly suppressed after TMAH pretreatment, which increased the thickness of the interfacial oxide layer. Furthermore, the CuI capping layer induced a strong inversion layer near the n-Si surface, resulting in an excellent field effect passivation. With the collaborative improvements in the interface chemical and electrical passivation, a competitive open-circuit voltage of 0.656 V and a high fill factor of 78.1% were achieved, leading to a stable efficiency of over 14.3% for the planar n-Si/PEDOT:PSS HSCs. Our findings suggest promising strategies to further exploit the full voltage as well as efficiency potentials for Si/organic solar cells.

  5. Application of LBIC measurements for characterisation of triple junction solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kwarikunda, N., E-mail: Nicholas.kwarikunda@live.nmmu.ac.za [Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, P.O. BOX 77000, Port Elizabeth, 6031 (South Africa); Makerere University, P.O. BOX 7062, Kampala (Uganda); Dyk, E.E. van; Vorster, F.J. [Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, P.O. BOX 77000, Port Elizabeth, 6031 (South Africa); Okullo, W. [Makerere University, P.O. BOX 7062, Kampala (Uganda); Munji, M.K. [Kenyatta University, P.O. BOX 43844-00100, Nairobi (Kenya)

    2014-04-15

    In this study the Light Beam Induced Current (LBIC) imaging technique was used to characterise InGaP/InGaAs/Ge triple junction solar cells. The study focused on the use of monochromatic and solar light as beam probes to obtain photocurrent response maps from which the presence of any current reducing features on the solar cell were identified. Point illuminated current voltage (I–V) curves were obtained simultaneously while LBIC scanning measurements were being made. Curve fitting using an interval division algorithm based on the single diode model was performed to extract basic point device and performance parameters to give a rough indication of the functioning of the triple junction device. Using red and blue lasers as beam probes, reverse voltage breakdown was observed on the I–V curves which could be attributed to the Ge bottom subcell not being fully activated. The extracted parameters obtained when using monochromatic and solar light beam probes showed a large variation, indicating the dependence of I–V parameters on the spectral content of the beam probe.

  6. Application of LBIC measurements for characterisation of triple junction solar cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kwarikunda, N.; Dyk, E.E. van; Vorster, F.J.; Okullo, W.; Munji, M.K.

    2014-01-01

    In this study the Light Beam Induced Current (LBIC) imaging technique was used to characterise InGaP/InGaAs/Ge triple junction solar cells. The study focused on the use of monochromatic and solar light as beam probes to obtain photocurrent response maps from which the presence of any current reducing features on the solar cell were identified. Point illuminated current voltage (I–V) curves were obtained simultaneously while LBIC scanning measurements were being made. Curve fitting using an interval division algorithm based on the single diode model was performed to extract basic point device and performance parameters to give a rough indication of the functioning of the triple junction device. Using red and blue lasers as beam probes, reverse voltage breakdown was observed on the I–V curves which could be attributed to the Ge bottom subcell not being fully activated. The extracted parameters obtained when using monochromatic and solar light beam probes showed a large variation, indicating the dependence of I–V parameters on the spectral content of the beam probe.

  7. The influence of silicon wafer thickness on characteristics of multijunction solar cells with vertical p—n-junctions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gnilenko A. B.

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available A multijunction silicon solar cell with vertical p–n junctions consisted of four serial n+–p–p+-structures was simulated using Silvaco TCAD software package. The dependence of solar cell characteristics on the silicon wafer thickness is investigated for a wide range of values.

  8. Application of Nanostructured Materials and Multi-junction Structure in Polymer Solar Cells

    KAUST Repository

    Gao, Yangqin

    2015-12-09

    With power conversion efficiency surpassing the 10% milestone for commercialization, photovoltaic technology based on solution-processable polymer solar cells (PSCs) provides a promising route towards a cost-efficient strategy to address the ever-increasing worldwide energy demands. However, to make PSCs successful, challenges such as insufficient light absorption, high maintenance costs, and relatively high production costs must be addressed. As solutions to some of these problems, the unique properties of nanostructured materials and complimentary light absorption in multi-junction device structure could prove to be highly beneficial. As a starting point, integrating nanostructure-based transparent self-cleaning surfaces in PSCs was investigated first. By controlling the length of the hydrothermally grown ZnO nanorods and covering their surface with a thin layer of chemical vapor-deposited SiO2, a highly transparent and UV-resistant superhydrophobic surface was constructed. Integrating the transparent superhydrophobic surface in a PSC shows minimal impact on the figure of merit of the PSC. To address the low mechanical durability of the transparent superhydrophobic surface based on SiO2-coated ZnO nanorods, a novel method inspired by the water condensation process was developed. This method involved directly growing hollow silica half-nanospheres on the substrate through the condensation of water in the presence of a silica precursor. Benefit from the decreased back scattering efficiency and increased light transport mean free path arise from the hollow nature, a transparent superhydrophobic surface was realized using submicrometer sized silica half-nanospheres. The decent mechanical property of silica and the “direct-grown” protocol are expected to impart improved mechanical durability to the transparent superhydrophobic surface. Regarding the application of multi-junction device structure in PSCs, homo multi-junction PSCs were constructed from an identical

  9. Point correlation dimension can reveal functional changes caused by gap junction blockers in the 4-aminopyridine in vivo rat epilepsy model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jardanhazy, Anett [Department of Neurology, University of Szeged, Semmelweis u. 6, Szeged H-6725 (Hungary); Molnar, Mark [Department of Psychophysiology, Institute for Psychology of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, P.O. Box 398, Budapest H-1394 (Hungary)], E-mail: molnar@cogpsyphy.hu; Jardanhazy, Tamas [Department of Neurology, University of Szeged, Semmelweis u. 6, Szeged H-6725 (Hungary)], E-mail: jt@nepsy.szote.u-szeged.hu

    2009-04-15

    The contribution of gap junction (GJ) blockers to seizure initiation was reexamined by means of an analysis on nonlinear dynamics with point correlation dimension (PD2i) at as well as around the primary focus, and mirror focus in an already active 4-aminopyridine-induced in vivo epilepsy model. From the data base of the ECoGs of anesthetized adult rats treated with quinine, a selective blocker of Cx36, and in combination with an additional broad-spectrum GJ blocker, carbenoxolone, 14 cases of each condition were reexamined with a stationarity insensitive nonlinear PD2i method. The blockade of the Cx36 channels decreased the usual drop of the point correlation dimension at the beginning of the seizures, and this was enhanced by the additional use of the global blocker carbenoxolone. The so-called characteristic DC shift just prior to seizure onset denotes a low dimensional seizure event and the recognizable seizures display very variable, rapidly changing dynamics, as revealed by the PD2i analysis. This nonlinear PD2i analysis demonstrated that the different GJ blockers in the already active epileptic model helped seizure initiation, but exerted inhibitory effects on the seizure onset itself, acting differently on the local components of the network organization generating seizure discharges, possibly changing the coupling strengths and time delays in the GJ-s.

  10. Point correlation dimension can reveal functional changes caused by gap junction blockers in the 4-aminopyridine in vivo rat epilepsy model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jardanhazy, Anett; Molnar, Mark; Jardanhazy, Tamas

    2009-01-01

    The contribution of gap junction (GJ) blockers to seizure initiation was reexamined by means of an analysis on nonlinear dynamics with point correlation dimension (PD2i) at as well as around the primary focus, and mirror focus in an already active 4-aminopyridine-induced in vivo epilepsy model. From the data base of the ECoGs of anesthetized adult rats treated with quinine, a selective blocker of Cx36, and in combination with an additional broad-spectrum GJ blocker, carbenoxolone, 14 cases of each condition were reexamined with a stationarity insensitive nonlinear PD2i method. The blockade of the Cx36 channels decreased the usual drop of the point correlation dimension at the beginning of the seizures, and this was enhanced by the additional use of the global blocker carbenoxolone. The so-called characteristic DC shift just prior to seizure onset denotes a low dimensional seizure event and the recognizable seizures display very variable, rapidly changing dynamics, as revealed by the PD2i analysis. This nonlinear PD2i analysis demonstrated that the different GJ blockers in the already active epileptic model helped seizure initiation, but exerted inhibitory effects on the seizure onset itself, acting differently on the local components of the network organization generating seizure discharges, possibly changing the coupling strengths and time delays in the GJ-s.

  11. Effects of Nonuniform Incident Illumination on the Thermal Performance of a Concentrating Triple Junction Solar Cell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fahad Al-Amri

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A numerical heat transfer model was developed to investigate the temperature of a triple junction solar cell and the thermal characteristics of the airflow in a channel behind the solar cell assembly using nonuniform incident illumination. The effects of nonuniformity parameters, emissivity of the two channel walls, and Reynolds number were studied. The maximum solar cell temperature sharply increased in the presence of nonuniform light profiles, causing a drastic reduction in overall efficiency. This resulted in two possible solutions for solar cells to operate in optimum efficiency level: (i adding new receiver plate with higher surface area or (ii using forced cooling techniques to reduce the solar cell temperature. Thus, surface radiation exchanges inside the duct and Re significantly reduced the maximum solar cell temperature, but a conventional plain channel cooling system was inefficient for cooling the solar cell at medium concentrations when the system was subjected to a nonuniform light distribution. Nonuniformity of the incident light and surface radiation in the duct had negligible effects on the collected thermal energy.

  12. Alterations of Intercellular Junctions in Peritoneal Mesothelial Cells from Patients Undergoing Dialysis: Effect of Retinoic Acid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Retana, Carmen; Sanchez, Elsa; Perez-Lopez, Alejandro; Cruz, Armando; Lagunas, Jesus; Cruz, Carmen; Vital, Socorro; Reyes, Jose L.

    2015-01-01

    ♦ Background: Dialysis patients are classified according to their peritoneal permeability as low transporter (LT, low solute permeability) or high transporter (HT, high solute permeability). Tight junction (TJ) proteins are critical to maintain ions, molecules and water paracellular transport through peritoneum. Exposure to peritoneal dialysis solutions causes damage to TJ in human peritoneal mesothelial cells (HPMCs). We analyzed the quantity, distribution and function of TJ proteins: claudin-1, -2 and -8, ZO-1 and occludin, in HPMC cultures from LT and HT patients. Since all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) might modify the expression of TJ proteins, we studied its effect on HPMCs. ♦ Methods: Control HPMCs were isolated from human omentum, while HT or LT cells were obtained from dialysis effluents. Cells were cultured in presence of ATRA 0, 50 or 100 nM. Transepithelial electrical resistance (TER) measurement, immunostaining and Western blot analyses were performed. ♦ Results: HT exhibited lower TER than control and LT monolayers. Immunofluorescence for TJ was weak and discontinuous along the cell contour, in LT and HT. Furthermore, claudin-1, occludin and ZO-1 expressions were decreased. In all groups, claudin-2 was localized at nuclei. We observed that ATRA improved TJ distribution and increased TJ expression in HT. This retinoid did not modify claudin-2 and -8 expressions. All-trans retinoic acid decreased TER in HT, but had no effect in LT. ♦ Conclusions: Tight junctions were altered in HPMCs from dialyzed patients. The HT monolayer has lower TER than LT, which might be associated with the peritoneal permeability in these patients. ATRA might be a therapeutic alternative to maintain mesothelial integrity, since it improved TJ localization and expression. PMID:24584604

  13. Impact of 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene exposure on connexin gap junction proteins in cultured rat ovaries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ganesan, Shanthi, E-mail: shanthig@iastate.edu; Keating, Aileen F., E-mail: akeating@iastate.edu

    2014-01-15

    7,12-Dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) destroys ovarian follicles in a concentration-dependent manner. The impact of DMBA on connexin (CX) proteins that mediate communication between follicular cell types along with pro-apoptotic factors p53 and Bax were investigated. Postnatal day (PND) 4 Fisher 344 rat ovaries were cultured for 4 days in vehicle medium (1% DMSO) followed by a single exposure to vehicle control (1% DMSO) or DMBA (12.5 nM or 75 nM) and cultured for 4 or 8 days. RT-PCR was performed to quantify Cx37, Cx43, p53 and Bax mRNA level. Western blotting and immunofluorescence staining were performed to determine CX37 or CX43 level and/or localization. Cx37 mRNA and protein increased (P < 0.05) at 4 days of 12.5 nM DMBA exposure. Relative to vehicle control-treated ovaries, mRNA encoding Cx43 decreased (P < 0.05) but CX43 protein increased (P < 0.05) at 4 days by both DMBA exposures. mRNA expression of pro-apoptotic p53 was decreased (P < 0.05) but no changes in Bax expression were observed after 4 days of DMBA exposures. In contrast, after 8 days, DMBA decreased Cx37 and Cx43 mRNA and protein but increased both p53 and Bax mRNA levels. CX43 protein was located between granulosa cells, while CX37 was located at the oocyte cell surface of all follicle stages. These findings support that DMBA exposure impacts ovarian Cx37 and Cx43 mRNA and protein prior to both observed changes in pro-apoptotic p53 and Bax and follicle loss. It is possible that such interference in follicular cell communication is detrimental to follicle viability, and may play a role in DMBA-induced follicular atresia. - Highlights: • DMBA increases Cx37 and Cx43 expression prior to follicle loss. • During follicle loss both Cx37 and Cx43 expressions are reduced. • CX43 protein is absent in follicle remnants lacking an oocyte.

  14. Minimum entropy principle-based solar cell operation without a pn-junction and a thin CdS layer to extract the holes from the emitter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Böer, Karl W.

    2016-10-01

    The solar cell does not use a pn-junction to separate electrons from holes, but uses an undoped CdS layer that is p-type inverted when attached to a p-type collector and collects the holes while rejecting the backflow of electrons and thereby prevents junction leakage. The operation of the solar cell is determined by the minimum entropy principle of the cell and its external circuit that determines the electrochemical potential, i.e., the Fermi-level of the base electrode to the operating (maximum power point) voltage. It leaves the Fermi level of the metal electrode of the CdS unchanged, since CdS does not participate in the photo-emf. All photoelectric actions are generated by the holes excited from the light that causes the shift of the quasi-Fermi levels in the generator and supports the diffusion current in operating conditions. It is responsible for the measured solar maximum power current. The open circuit voltage (Voc) can approach its theoretical limit of the band gap of the collector at 0 K and the cell increases the efficiency at AM1 to 21% for a thin-film CdS/CdTe that is given as an example here. However, a series resistance of the CdS forces a limitation of its thickness to preferably below 200 Å to avoid unnecessary reduction in efficiency or Voc. The operation of the CdS solar cell does not involve heated carriers. It is initiated by the field at the CdS/CdTe interface that exceeds 20 kV/cm that is sufficient to cause extraction of holes by the CdS that is inverted to become p-type. Here a strong doubly charged intrinsic donor can cause a negative differential conductivity that switches-on a high-field domain that is stabilized by the minimum entropy principle and permits an efficient transport of the holes from the CdTe to the base electrode. Experimental results of the band model of CdS/CdTe solar cells are given and show that the conduction bands are connected in the dark, where the electron current must be continuous, and the valence bands are

  15. CRIM1 complexes with ß-catenin and cadherins, stabilizes cell-cell junctions and is critical for neural morphogenesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virgilio G Ponferrada

    Full Text Available In multicellular organisms, morphogenesis is a highly coordinated process that requires dynamically regulated adhesion between cells. An excellent example of cellular morphogenesis is the formation of the neural tube from the flattened epithelium of the neural plate. Cysteine-rich motor neuron protein 1 (CRIM1 is a single-pass (type 1 transmembrane protein that is expressed in neural structures beginning at the neural plate stage. In the frog Xenopus laevis, loss of function studies using CRIM1 antisense morpholino oligonucleotides resulted in a failure of neural development. The CRIM1 knockdown phenotype was, in some cases, mild and resulted in perturbed neural fold morphogenesis. In severely affected embryos there was a dramatic failure of cell adhesion in the neural plate and complete absence of neural structures subsequently. Investigation of the mechanism of CRIM1 function revealed that it can form complexes with ß-catenin and cadherins, albeit indirectly, via the cytosolic domain. Consistent with this, CRIM1 knockdown resulted in diminished levels of cadherins and ß-catenin in junctional complexes in the neural plate. We conclude that CRIM1 is critical for cell-cell adhesion during neural development because it is required for the function of cadherin-dependent junctions.

  16. Nance-Horan syndrome protein, NHS, associates with epithelial cell junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Shiwani; Ang, Sharyn L; Shaw, Marie; Mackey, David A; Gécz, Jozef; McAvoy, John W; Craig, Jamie E

    2006-06-15

    Nance-Horan syndrome, characterized by congenital cataracts, craniofacial, dental abnormalities and mental disturbances, is an X-linked disorder with significant phenotypic heterogeneity. Affected individuals have mutations in the NHS (Nance-Horan syndrome) gene typically resulting in premature truncation of the protein. This report underlines the complexity of the regulation of the NHS gene that transcribes several isoforms. We demonstrate the differential expression of the two NHS isoforms, NHS-A and NHS-1A, and differences in the subcellular localization of the proteins encoded by these isoforms. This may in part explain the pleiotropic features of the syndrome. We show that the endogenous and exogenous NHS-A isoform localizes to the cell membrane of mammalian cells in a cell-type-dependent manner and that it co-localizes with the tight junction (TJ) protein ZO-1 in the apical aspect of cell membrane in epithelial cells. We also show that the NHS-1A isoform is a cytoplasmic protein. In the developing mammalian lens, we found continuous expression of NHS that became restricted to the lens epithelium in pre- and postnatal lens. Consistent with the in vitro findings, the NHS-A isoform associates with the apical cell membrane in the lens epithelium. This study suggests that disturbances in intercellular contacts underlie cataractogenesis in the Nance-Horan syndrome. NHS is the first gene localized at TJs that has been implicated in congenital cataracts.

  17. Dioscorin protects tight junction protein expression in A549 human airway epithelium cells from dust mite damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Lin Shien; Ko, Ying Hsien; Lin, Kuo Wei; Hsu, Jeng Yuan; Chu, Jao Jia; Chi, Chin Shiang

    2009-12-01

    In addition to being an allergen, the trypsin activity of dust mite extract also destroys the tight junctions of bronchial epithelium. Such damage can lead to airway leakage, which increases airway exposure to allergens, irritants, and other pathogens. Dioscorin, the storage protein of yam, demonstrates anti-trypsin activity, as well as other potential anti-inflammatory effects. This study investigated the protective role of dioscorin for tight junctions. The immunofluorescence stains of zonula occludens (ZO-1), E-cadherin (EC) and desmoplakin (DP) proteins were compared. A cultured A549 cell line was used as a control and A549 cells were incubated with mite extract 100 mg/mL for 16 h, with or without dioscorin 100 mg/mL pretreatment for 8 h and with dioscorin 100 mg/mL alone for 16 h. Western blot was performed to detect changes in ZO-1, EC, and DP in the treated A549 cell lines. Loss of tight junction protein expression (ZO-1, EC, DP) was demonstrated after 16-h mite extract incubation. The defect could be restored if cells were pretreated with dioscorin for 8 h. In addition, dioscorin did not cause damage to the A549 cell lines in terms of cell survival or morphology. Western blot showed no change in the amount of tight junction protein under various conditions. Dioscorin is a potential protector of airway damage caused by mite extract.

  18. Rab14 and its exchange factor FAM116 link endocytic recycling and adherens junction stability in migrating cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linford, Andrea; Yoshimura, Shin-ichiro; Nunes Bastos, Ricardo; Langemeyer, Lars; Gerondopoulos, Andreas; Rigden, Daniel J; Barr, Francis A

    2012-05-15

    Rab GTPases define the vesicle trafficking pathways underpinning cell polarization and migration. Here, we find that Rab4, Rab11, and Rab14 and the candidate Rab GDP-GTP exchange factors (GEFs) FAM116A and AVL9 are required for cell migration. Rab14 and its GEF FAM116A localize to and act on an intermediate compartment of the transferrin-recycling pathway prior to Rab11 and after Rab5 and Rab4. This Rab14 intermediate recycling compartment has specific functions in migrating cells discrete from early and recycling endosomes. Rab14-depleted cells show increased N-cadherin levels at junctional complexes and cannot resolve cell-cell junctions. This is due to decreased shedding of cell-surface N-cadherin by the ADAM family protease ADAM10/Kuzbanian. In FAM116A- and Rab14-depleted cells, ADAM10 accumulates in a transferrin-positive endocytic compartment, and the cell-surface level of ADAM10 is correspondingly reduced. FAM116 and Rab14 therefore define an endocytic recycling pathway needed for ADAM protease trafficking and regulation of cell-cell junctions. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. InP tunnel junction for InGaAs/InP tandem solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilela, M. F.; Freundlich, A.; Bensaoula, A.; Medelci, N.; Renaud, P.

    1995-01-01

    Chemical beam epitaxy (CBE) has been shown to allow the growth of high quality materials with reproducible complex compositional and doping profiles. The main advantage of CBE compared to metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD), the most popular technique for InP-based photovoltaic device fabrication, is the ability to grow high purity epilayers at much lower temperatures (450-530 C). We have previously shown that CBE is perfectly suited toward the fabrication of complex photovoltaic devices such as InP/InGaAs monolithically integrated tandem solar cells, because its low process temperature preserves the electrical characteristics of the InGaAs tunnel junction commonly used as an ohmic interconnect. In this work using CBE for the fabrication of optically transparent (with respect to the bottom cell) InP tunnel diodes is demonstrated. Epitaxial growth were performed in a Riber CBE 32 system using PH3 and TMIn as III and V precursors. Solid Be (p-type) and Si (n-type) have been used as doping sources, allowing doping levels up to 2 x 10(exp -19)/cu cm and 1 x 10(exp -19)/cu cm for n and p type respectively. The InP tunnel junction characteristics and the influence of the growth's conditions (temperature, growth rate) over its performance have been carefully investigated. InP p(++)/n(++) tunnel junction with peak current densities up to 1600 A/sq cm and maximum specific resistivities (V(sub p)/I(sub p) - peak voltage to peak current ratio) in the range of 10(exp -4) Omega-sq cm were obtained. The obtained peak current densities exceed the highest results previously reported for their lattice matched counterparts, In(0.53)Ga( 0.47)As and should allow the realization of improved minimal absorption losses in the interconnect InP/InGaAs tandem devices for Space applications. Owing to the low process temperature required for the top cell, these devices exhibit almost no degradation of its characteristics after the growth of subsequent thick InP layer suggesting

  20. GaAsPN-based PIN solar cells MBE-grown on GaP substrates: toward the III-V/Si tandem solar cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Da Silva, M.; Almosni, S.; Cornet, C.; Létoublon, A.; Levallois, C.; Rale, P.; Lombez, L.; Guillemoles, J.-F.; Durand, O.

    2015-03-01

    GaAsPN semiconductors are promising material for the elaboration of high efficiencies tandem solar cells on silicon substrates. GaAsPN diluted nitride alloy is studied as the top junction material due to its perfect lattice matching with the Si substrate and its ideal bandgap energy allowing a perfect current matching with the Si bottom cell. We review our recent progress in materials development of the GaAsPN alloy and our recent studies of some of the different building blocks toward the elaboration of a PIN solar cell. A lattice matched (with a GaP(001) substrate, as a first step toward the elaboration on a Si substrate) 1μm-thick GaAsPN alloy has been grown by MBE. After a post-growth annealing step, this alloy displays a strong absorption around 1.8-1.9 eV, and efficient photoluminescence at room temperature suitable for the elaboration of the targeted solar cell top junction. Early stage GaAsPN PIN solar cells prototypes have been grown on GaP (001) substrates, with 2 different absorber thicknesses (1μm and 0.3μm). The external quantum efficiencies and the I-V curves show that carriers have been extracted from the GaAsPN alloy absorbers, with an open-circuit voltage of 1.18 V, while displaying low short circuit currents meaning that the GaAsPN structural properties needs a further optimization. A better carrier extraction has been observed with the absorber displaying the smallest thickness, which is coherent with a low carriers diffusion length in our GaAsPN compound. Considering all the pathways for improvement, the efficiency obtained under AM1.5G is however promising.

  1. Comparative analysis of photovoltaic principles governing dye-sensitized solar cells and p-n junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisquert, Juan; Garcia-Canadas, Jorge; Mora-Sero, Ivan; Palomares, Emilio

    2004-02-01

    We discuss a generalized model for a solar cell, and the realization with heterogeneous photochemical photovoltaic converters such as the dye-sensitized solar cell. The different steps involved in the conversion of photon energy to electrical energy, indicate that a key point to consider is maintaining the separation of Fermi levels in the selective contacts to the absorber. In order to understand the irreversible processes limiting the efficient operation of the solar cell, it is necessary to obtain a precise description of the internal distribution of Fermi levels. We suggest the equivalent circuit as a central tool for obtaining such description, in relation with small perturbation measurement techniques. The fundamental steps of excitation and charge separation, and the losses by transport and charge transfer, can be represented by suitable circuit elements, and the overall circuit configuration indicates the operation of the selective contacts. The comparison of the equivalent circuits for heterogeneous dye solar cells and solid-state p-n junctions, shows the significant difference in the mechanisms of the selective contacts of these solar cells.

  2. Results from an International Measurement Round Robin of III-V Triple Junction Solar Cells under Air Mass Zero

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins, Phillip; Scheiman, Chris; Goodbody, Chris; Baur, Carsten; Sharps, Paul; Imaizumi, Mitsuru; Yoo, Henry; Sahlstrom, Ted; Walters, Robert; Lorentzen, Justin; hide

    2006-01-01

    This paper reports the results of an international measurement round robin of monolithic, triple-junction, GaInP/GaAs/Ge space solar cells. Eight laboratories representing national labs, solar cell vendors and space solar cell consumers, measured cells using in-house reference cells and compared those results to measurements made where each lab used the same set of reference cells. The results show that most of the discrepancy between laboratories is likely due to the quality of the standard cells rather than the measurement system or solar simulator used.

  3. Preliminary temperature Accelerated Life Test (ALT) on III-V commercial concentrator triple-junction solar cells

    OpenAIRE

    Espinet González, Pilar; Algora del Valle, Carlos; Orlando Carrillo, Vincenzo; Nuñez Mendoza, Neftali; Vázquez López, Manuel; Bautista Villares, Jesus; Xiugang, He; Barrutia Poncela, Laura; Rey-Stolle Prado, Ignacio; Araki, Kenji

    2012-01-01

    A quantitative temperature accelerated life test on sixty GaInP/GaInAs/Ge triple-junction commercial concentrator solar cells is being carried out. The final objective of this experiment is to evaluate the reliability, warranty period, and failure mechanism of high concentration solar cells in a moderate period of time. The acceleration of the degradation is realized by subjecting the solar cells at temperatures markedly higher than the nominal working temperature under a concentrator Three e...

  4. Theoretical results on the tandem junction solar cell based on its Ebers-Moll transistor model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goradia, C.; Vaughn, J.; Baraona, C. R.

    1980-01-01

    A one-dimensional theoretical model of the tandem junction solar cell (TJC) with base resistivity greater than about 1 ohm-cm and under low level injection has been derived. This model extends a previously published conceptual model which treats the TJC as an npn transistor. The model gives theoretical expressions for each of the Ebers-Moll type currents of the illuminated TJC and allows for the calculation of the spectral response, I(sc), V(oc), FF and eta under variation of one or more of the geometrical and material parameters and 1MeV electron fluence. Results of computer calculations based on this model are presented and discussed. These results indicate that for space applications, both a high beginning of life efficiency, greater than 15% AM0, and a high radiation tolerance can be achieved only with thin (less than 50 microns) TJC's with high base resistivity (greater than 10 ohm-cm).

  5. AlGaAs top solar cell for mechanical attachment in a multi-junction tandem concentrator solar cell stack

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinetta, L. C.; Hannon, M. H.; Cummings, J. R.; Mcneeley, J. B.; Barnett, Allen M.

    1990-01-01

    Free-standing, transparent, tunable bandgap AlxGa1-xAs top solar cells have been fabricated for mechanical attachment in a four terminal tandem stack solar cell. Evaluation of the device results has demonstrated 1.80 eV top solar cells with efficiencies of 18 percent (100 X, and AM0) which would yield stack efficiencies of 31 percent (100 X, AM0) with a silicon bottom cell. When fully developed, the AlxGa1-xAs/Si mechanically-stacked two-junction solar cell concentrator system can provide efficiencies of 36 percent (AM0, 100 X). AlxGa1-xAs top solar cells with bandgaps from 1.66 eV to 2.08 eV have been fabricated. Liquid phase epitaxy (LPE) growth techniques have been used and LPE has been found to yield superior AlxGa1-xAs material when compared to molecular beam epitaxy and metal-organic chemical vapor deposition. It is projected that stack assembly technology will be readily applicable to any mechanically stacked multijunction (MSMJ) system. Development of a wide bandgap top solar cell is the only feasible method for obtaining stack efficiencies greater than 40 percent at AM0. System efficiencies of greater than 40 percent can be realized when the AlGaAs top solar cell is used in a three solar cell mechanical stack.

  6. A universal route to fabricate n-i-p multi-junction polymer solar cells via solution processing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rasi, Dario Di Carlo; Hendriks, Koen H.; Heintges, Gael H. L.; Simone, Giulio; Gelinck, Gerwin H.; Gevaerts, Veronique S.; Andriessen, Ronn; Pirotte, Geert; Maes, Wouter; Li, Weiwei; Wienk, Martijn M.; Janssen, Rene A. J.

    The interconnection layer (ICL) that connects adjacent subcells electrically and optically in solution‐processed multi‐junction polymer solar cells must meet functional requirements in terms of work functions, conductivity, and transparency, but also be compatible with the multiple layer stack in

  7. Bismuth-catalyzed and doped silicon nanowires for one-pump-down fabrication of radial junction solar cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Linwei; Fortuna, Franck; O'Donnell, Benedict; Jeon, Taewoo; Foldyna, Martin; Picardi, Gennaro; Roca i Cabarrocas, Pere

    2012-08-08

    Silicon nanowires (SiNWs) are becoming a popular choice to develop a new generation of radial junction solar cells. We here explore a bismuth- (Bi-) catalyzed growth and doping of SiNWs, via vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) mode, to fabricate amorphous Si radial n-i-p junction solar cells in a one-pump-down and low-temperature process in a single chamber plasma deposition system. We provide the first evidence that catalyst doping in the SiNW cores, caused by incorporating Bi catalyst atoms as n-type dopant, can be utilized to fabricate radial junction solar cells, with a record open circuit voltage of V(oc) = 0.76 V and an enhanced light trapping effect that boosts the short circuit current to J(sc) = 11.23 mA/cm(2). More importantly, this bi-catalyzed SiNW growth and doping strategy exempts the use of extremely toxic phosphine gas, leading to significant procedure simplification and cost reduction for building radial junction thin film solar cells.

  8. GaSb solar cells grown on GaAs via interfacial misfit arrays for use in the III-Sb multi-junction cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, George T.; Juang, Bor-Chau; Slocum, Michael A.; Bittner, Zachary S.; Laghumavarapu, Ramesh B.; Huffaker, Diana L.; Hubbard, Seth M.

    2017-12-01

    Growth of GaSb with low threading dislocation density directly on GaAs may be possible with the strategic strain relaxation of interfacial misfit arrays. This creates an opportunity for a multi-junction solar cell with access to a wide range of well-developed direct bandgap materials. Multi-junction cells with a single layer of GaSb/GaAs interfacial misfit arrays could achieve higher efficiency than state-of-the-art inverted metamorphic multi-junction cells while forgoing the need for costly compositionally graded buffer layers. To develop this technology, GaSb single junction cells were grown via molecular beam epitaxy on both GaSb and GaAs substrates to compare homoepitaxial and heteroepitaxial GaSb device results. The GaSb-on-GaSb cell had an AM1.5g efficiency of 5.5% and a 44-sun AM1.5d efficiency of 8.9%. The GaSb-on-GaAs cell was 1.0% efficient under AM1.5g and 4.5% at 44 suns. The lower performance of the heteroepitaxial cell was due to low minority carrier Shockley-Read-Hall lifetimes and bulk shunting caused by defects related to the mismatched growth. A physics-based device simulator was used to create an inverted triple-junction GaInP/GaAs/GaSb model. The model predicted that, with current GaSb-on-GaAs material quality, the not-current-matched, proof-of-concept cell would provide 0.5% absolute efficiency gain over a tandem GaInP/GaAs cell at 1 sun and 2.5% gain at 44 suns, indicating that the effectiveness of the GaSb junction was a function of concentration.

  9. Effect of Chum Salmon Egg Lectin on Tight Junctions in Caco-2 Cell Monolayers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryo Nemoto

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The effect of a chum salmon egg lectin (CSL3 on tight junction (TJ of Caco-2 cell monolayers was investigated. The lectin opened TJ as indicated by the decrease of the transepithelial electrical resistance (TER value and the increase of the permeation of lucifer yellow, which is transported via the TJ-mediated paracellular pathway. The effects of CSL3 were inhibited by the addition of 10 mM L-rhamnose or D-galactose which were specific sugars for CSL3. The lectin increased the intracellular Ca2+ of Caco-2 cell monolayers, that could be inhibited by the addition of L-rhamnose. The fluorescence immunostaining of β-actin in Caco-2 cell monolayers revealed that the cytoskeleton was changed by the CSL3 treatment, suggesting that CSL3 depolymerized β-actin to cause reversible TJ structural and functional disruption. Although Japanese jack bean lectin and wheat germ lectin showed similar effects in the decrease of the TER values and the increase of the intracellular Ca2+, they could not be inhibited by the same concentrations of simple sugars, such as D-glucose and N-acetyl-D-glucosamine.

  10. A new singularity in the coherent coupling in Al/GaAs/Al SNS junctions at the bias voltage corresponding to the superconducting energy gap

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Taboryski, Rafael Jozef; Kutchinsky, Jonatan; Kuhn, Oliver

    1998-01-01

    Particularly high transmittivity superconductor-semiconductor barriers formed by MBE growth have been used to form short Josephson planar type Superconductor-Normal-metal-Superconductor (SNS) Josephson junctions with lengths down to 1 mu m. In these junctions the quasiparticles move diffusively...... across the normal region and carry along the phase information given to them by Andreev reflections at both SN boundaries. In order to probe the importance of the coherent transport of quasiparticles in the normal region, we formed one of the superconducting electrodes of the junction as an open loop i...

  11. Investigation of a novel concept for hydrogen production by PEM water electrolysis integrated with multi-junction solar cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ferrero, Domenico; Santarelli, Massimo

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • A 2D model of a PEM water electrolyzer is developed and validated. • A novel system integrating PEM and multi-junction solar cells is proposed. • The model is applied to the simulation of the novel system. • The integration of PEM and MJ cells enhances the hydrogen production efficiency. - Abstract: A 2D finite element model of a high-pressure PEM water electrolyzer is developed and validated over experimental data obtained from a demonstration prototype. The model includes the electrochemical, fluidic and thermal description of the repeating unit of a PEM electrolyzer stack. The model is applied to the simulation of a novel system composed by a high-temperature, high-pressure PEM electrochemical cell coupled with a photovoltaic multi-junction solar cell installed in a solar concentrator. The thermo-electrochemical characterization of the solar-driven PEM electrolysis system is presented and the advantages of the high-temperature operation and of the direct coupling of electrolyzer and solar cell are assessed. The results show that the integration of the multi-junction cell enhances the performance of the electrolyzer and allows to achieve higher system efficiency compared to separated photovoltaic generation and hydrogen production by electrolysis.

  12. Analysis of the photo voltage decay /PVD/ method for measuring minority carrier lifetimes in P-N junction solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Von Roos, O.

    1981-01-01

    The photo voltage decay (PVD) method for the measurement of minority carrier lifetimes in P-N junction solar cells with cell thickness comparable to or even less than the minority carrier diffusion length is examined. The method involves the generation of free carriers in the quasi-neutral bulk material by flashes of light and the monitoring of the subsequent decay of the induced open-circuit voltages as the carriers recombine, which is dependent on minority carrier recombination lifetime. It is shown that the voltage versus time curve for an ordinary solar cell (N(+)-P junction) is proportional to the inverse minority carrier lifetime plus a factor expressing the ratio of diffusion length to cell thickness. In the case of an ideal back-surface-field cell (N(+)-P-P(+) junction) however, the slope is directly proportional to the inverse minority carrier lifetime. It is noted that since most BSF cells are not ideal, possessing a sizable back surface recombination velocity, the PVD measurements must be treated with caution and supplemented with other nonstationary methods.

  13. Plasmonic thin film InP/graphene-based Schottky-junction solar cell using nanorods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abedin Nematpour

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Herein, the design and simulation of graphene/InP thin film solar cells with a novel periodic array of nanorods and plasmonic back-reflectors of the nano-semi sphere was proposed. In this structure, a single-layer of the graphene sheet was placed on the vertical nanorods of InP to form a Schottky junction. The electromagnetic field was determined using solving three-dimensional Maxwell's equations discretized by the finite difference method (FDM. The enhancement of light trapping in the absorbing layer was illustrated, thereby increasing the short circuit current to a maximum value of 31.57 mA/cm2 with nanorods having a radius of 400 nm, height of 1250 nm, and nano-semi sphere radius of 50 nm, under a solar irradiation of AM1.5G. The maximum ultimate efficiency was determined to be 45.8% for an angle of incidence of 60°. This structure has shown a very good light trapping ability when graphene and ITO layers were used at the top and as a back-reflector in the proposed photonic crystal structure of the InP nanorods. Thence, this structure improves the short-circuit current density and the ultimate efficiency of 12% and 2.7%, respectively, in comparison with the InP-nanowire solar cells.

  14. The inverse F-BAR domain protein srGAP2 acts through srGAP3 to modulate neuronal differentiation and neurite outgrowth of mouse neuroblastoma cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue Ma

    Full Text Available The inverse F-BAR (IF-BAR domain proteins srGAP1, srGAP2 and srGAP3 are implicated in neuronal development and may be linked to mental retardation, schizophrenia and seizure. A partially overlapping expression pattern and highly similar protein structures indicate a functional redundancy of srGAPs in neuronal development. Our previous study suggests that srGAP3 negatively regulates neuronal differentiation in a Rac1-dependent manner in mouse Neuro2a cells. Here we show that exogenously expressed srGAP1 and srGAP2 are sufficient to inhibit valporic acid (VPA-induced neurite initiation and growth in the mouse Neuro2a cells. While ectopic- or over-expression of RhoGAP-defective mutants, srGAP1(R542A and srGAP2(R527A exert a visible inhibitory effect on neuronal differentiation. Unexpectedly, knockdown of endogenous srGAP2 fails to facilitate the neuronal differentiation induced by VPA, but promotes neurite outgrowth of differentiated cells. All three IF-BAR domains from srGAP1-3 can induce filopodia formation in Neuro2a, but the isolated IF-BAR domain from srGAP2, not from srGAP1 and srGAP3, can promote VPA-induced neurite initiation and neuronal differentiation. We identify biochemical and functional interactions of the three srGAPs family members. We propose that srGAP3-Rac1 signaling may be required for the effect of srGAP1 and srGAP2 on attenuating neuronal differentiation. Furthermore, inhibition of Slit-Robo interaction can phenocopy a loss-of-function of srGAP3, indicating that srGAP3 may be dedicated to the Slit-Robo pathway. Our results demonstrate the interplay between srGAP1, srGAP2 and srGAP3 regulates neuronal differentiation and neurite outgrowth. These findings may provide us new insights into the possible roles of srGAPs in neuronal development and a potential mechanism for neurodevelopmental diseases.

  15. The effect of the optical system on the electrical performance of III–V concentrator triple junction solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schultz, R.D., E-mail: S206029578@nmmu.ac.za; Dyk, E.E. van; Vorster, F.J.

    2016-01-01

    High Concentrated Photovoltaic (H-CPV) technologies utilize relatively inexpensive reflective and refractive optical components for concentration to achieve high energy yield. The electrical performance of H-CPV systems is, however, dependent on the properties and configuration of the optical components. The focus of this paper is to summarize the effect of the properties of the optical system on the electrical performance of a Concentrator Triple Junction (CTJ) InGaP/InGaAs/Ge cell. Utilizing carefully designed experiments that include spectral measurements and intensity profiles in the optical plane of the CTJ cell, the influence of photon absorption, Fresnel lens properties and chromatic aberration created by the optical system on the electrical performance of a CTJ cell is shown. From the results obtained, it is concluded that good characterization and understanding of the optical system’s properties may add to improved design of future multi-junction devices.

  16. Postreplication gap filling in the DNA of X-ray-damaged Chinese hamster cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koerner, I.; Malz, W.

    1975-01-01

    In X-irradiated Chinese hamster cells the newly synthesized DNA has a lower molecular weight than the DNA in control cells. This reduced molecular weight has been interpreted by gap induction opposite the lesions in the parental DNA strands. Within two hours these postreplication gaps were closed. With the aid of BrdUrd-photolys-technique it could be demonstrated that the gaps were filled by de novo synthesis. But we were not able to show a participation of parental DNA in the gap-filling process

  17. Generation of functional neuromuscular junctions from human pluripotent stem cell lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katja ePuttonen

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Several neuromuscular diseases involve dysfunction of neuromuscular junctions (NMJs, yet there are no patient-specific human models for electrophysiological characterization of NMJ. We seeded cells of neurally-induced embryoid body-like spheres derived from induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC or embryonic stem cell (ESC lines as monolayers without basic fibroblast factor (bFGF and observed differentiation of neuronal as well as spontaneously contracting, multinucleated skeletal myotubes. The myotubes showed striation, immunoreactivity for myosin heavy chain, actin bundles typical for myo-oriented cells, and generated spontaneous and evoked action potentials (APs. The myogenic differentiation was associated with expression of MyoD1, myogenin and type I ryanodine receptor. Neurons formed end plate like structures with strong binding of α-bungarotoxin, a marker of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors highly expressed in the postsynaptic membrane of NMJs, and expressed SMI-32, a motoneuron marker, as well as SV2, a marker for synapses. Pharmacological stimulation of cholinergic receptors resulted in strong depolarization of myotube membrane and raised Ca2+ concentration in sarcoplasm, while electrical stimulation evoked Ca2+ transients in myotubes. Stimulation of motoneurons with N-Methyl-D-aspartate resulted in reproducible APs in myotubes and end plates displayed typical MEPs and tonic activity depolarizing myotubes of about 10 mV. We conclude that simultaneous differentiation of neurons and myotubes from patient-specific iPSCs or ESCs results also in the development of functional NMJs. Our human model of NMJ may serve as an important tool to investigate normal development, mechanisms of diseases and novel drug targets involving NMJ dysfunction and degeneration.

  18. Optical analysis of a III-V-nanowire-array-on-Si dual junction solar cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yang; Höhn, Oliver; Tucher, Nico; Pistol, Mats-Erik; Anttu, Nicklas

    2017-08-07

    A tandem solar cell consisting of a III-V nanowire subcell on top of a planar Si subcell is a promising candidate for next generation photovoltaics due to the potential for high efficiency. However, for success with such applications, the geometry of the system must be optimized for absorption of sunlight. Here, we consider this absorption through optics modeling. Similarly, as for a bulk dual-junction tandem system on a silicon bottom cell, a bandgap of approximately 1.7 eV is optimum for the nanowire top cell. First, we consider a simplified system of bare, uncoated III-V nanowires on the silicon substrate and optimize the absorption in the nanowires. We find that an optimum absorption in 2000 nm long nanowires is reached for a dense array of approximately 15 nanowires per square micrometer. However, when we coat such an array with a conformal indium tin oxide (ITO) top contact layer, a substantial absorption loss occurs in the ITO. This ITO could absorb 37% of the low energy photons intended for the silicon subcell. By moving to a design with a 50 nm thick, planarized ITO top layer, we can reduce this ITO absorption to 5%. However, such a planarized design introduces additional reflection losses. We show that these reflection losses can be reduced with a 100 nm thick SiO 2 anti-reflection coating on top of the ITO layer. When we at the same time include a Si 3 N 4 layer with a thickness of 90 nm on the silicon surface between the nanowires, we can reduce the average reflection loss of the silicon cell from 17% to 4%. Finally, we show that different approximate models for the absorption in the silicon substrate can lead to a 15% variation in the estimated photocurrent density in the silicon subcell.

  19. 3D-fibroblast tissues constructed by a cell-coat technology enhance tight-junction formation of human colon epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsusaki, Michiya; Hikimoto, Daichi; Nishiguchi, Akihiro; Kadowaki, Koji; Ohura, Kayoko; Imai, Teruko; Akashi, Mitsuru

    2015-02-13

    Caco-2, human colon carcinoma cell line, has been widely used as a model system for intestinal epithelial permeability because Caco-2 cells express tight-junctions, microvilli, and a number of enzymes and transporters characteristic of enterocytes. However, the functional differentiation and polarization of Caco-2 cells to express sufficient tight-junctions (a barrier) usually takes over 21 days in culture. This may be due to the cell culture environment, for example inflammation induced by plastic petri dishes. Three-dimensional (3D) sufficient cell microenvironments similar to in vivo natural conditions (proteins and cells), will promote rapid differentiation and higher functional expression of tight junctions. Herein we report for the first time an enhancement in tight-junction formation by 3D-cultures of Caco-2 cells on monolayered (1L) and eight layered (8L) normal human dermal fibroblasts (NHDF). Trans epithelial electric resistance (TEER) of Caco-2 cells was enhanced in the 3D-cultures, especially 8L-NHDF tissues, depending on culture times and only 10 days was enough to reach the same TEER value of Caco-2 monolayers after a 21 day incubation. Relative mRNA expression of tight-junction proteins of Caco-2 cells on 3D-cultures showed higher values than those in monolayer structures. Transporter gene expression patterns of Caco-2 cells on 3D-constructs were almost the same as those of Caco-2 monolayers, suggesting that there was no effect of 3D-cultures on transporter protein expression. The expression correlation between carboxylesterase 1 and 2 in 3D-cultures represented similar trends with human small intestines. The results of this study clearly represent a valuable application of 3D-Caco-2 tissues for pharmaceutical applications. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Primary angle closure glaucoma (PACG) susceptibility gene PLEKHA7 encodes a novel Rac1/Cdc42 GAP that modulates cell migration and blood-aqueous barrier function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Mei-Chin; Shei, William; Chan, Anita S; Chua, Boon-Tin; Goh, Shuang-Ru; Chong, Yaan-Fun; Hilmy, Maryam H; Nongpiur, Monisha E; Baskaran, Mani; Khor, Chiea-Chuen; Aung, Tin; Hunziker, Walter; Vithana, Eranga N

    2017-10-15

    PLEKHA7, a gene recently associated with primary angle closure glaucoma (PACG), encodes an apical junctional protein expressed in components of the blood aqueous barrier (BAB). We found that PLEKHA7 is down-regulated in lens epithelial cells and in iris tissue of PACG patients. PLEKHA7 expression also correlated with the C risk allele of the sentinel SNP rs11024102 with the risk allele carrier groups having significantly reduced PLEKHA7 levels compared to non-risk allele carriers. Silencing of PLEKHA7 in human immortalized non-pigmented ciliary epithelium (h-iNPCE) and primary trabecular meshwork cells, which are intimately linked to BAB and aqueous humor outflow respectively, affected actin cytoskeleton organization. PLEKHA7 specifically interacts with GTP-bound Rac1 and Cdc42, but not RhoA, and the activation status of the two small GTPases is linked to PLEKHA7 expression levels. PLEKHA7 stimulates Rac1 and Cdc42 GTP hydrolysis, without affecting nucleotide exchange, identifying PLEKHA7 as a novel Rac1/Cdc42 GAP. Consistent with the regulatory role of Rac1 and Cdc42 in maintaining the tight junction permeability, silencing of PLEKHA7 compromises the paracellular barrier between h-iNPCE cells. Thus, downregulation of PLEKHA7 in PACG may affect BAB integrity and aqueous humor outflow via its Rac1/Cdc42 GAP activity, thereby contributing to disease etiology. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Leptospira interrogans causes quantitative and morphological disturbances in adherens junctions and other biological groups of proteins in human endothelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Hiromi; Coburn, Jenifer

    2017-07-01

    Pathogenic Leptospira transmits from animals to humans, causing the zoonotic life-threatening infection called leptospirosis. This infection is reported worldwide with higher risk in tropical regions. Symptoms of leptospirosis range from mild illness to severe illness such as liver damage, kidney failure, respiratory distress, meningitis, and fatal hemorrhagic disease. Invasive species of Leptospira rapidly disseminate to multiple tissues where this bacterium damages host endothelial cells, increasing vascular permeability. Despite the burden in humans and animals, the pathogenic mechanisms of Leptospira infection remain to be elucidated. The pathogenic leptospires adhere to endothelial cells and permeabilize endothelial barriers in vivo and in vitro. In this study, human endothelial cells were infected with the pathogenic L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni or the saprophyte L. biflexa serovar Patoc to investigate morphological changes and other distinctive phenotypes of host cell proteins by fluorescence microscopy. Among those analyzed, 17 proteins from five biological classes demonstrated distinctive phenotypes in morphology and/or signal intensity upon infection with Leptospira. The affected biological groups include: 1) extracellular matrix, 2) intercellular adhesion molecules and cell surface receptors, 3) intracellular proteins, 4) cell-cell junction proteins, and 5) a cytoskeletal protein. Infection with the pathogenic strain most profoundly disturbed the biological structures of adherens junctions (VE-cadherin and catenins) and actin filaments. Our data illuminate morphological disruptions and reduced signals of cell-cell junction proteins and filamentous actin in L. interrogans-infected endothelial cells. In addition, Leptospira infection, regardless of pathogenic status, influenced other host proteins belonging to multiple biological classes. Our data suggest that this zoonotic agent may damage endothelial cells via multiple cascades or pathways

  2. Leptospira interrogans causes quantitative and morphological disturbances in adherens junctions and other biological groups of proteins in human endothelial cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiromi Sato

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Pathogenic Leptospira transmits from animals to humans, causing the zoonotic life-threatening infection called leptospirosis. This infection is reported worldwide with higher risk in tropical regions. Symptoms of leptospirosis range from mild illness to severe illness such as liver damage, kidney failure, respiratory distress, meningitis, and fatal hemorrhagic disease. Invasive species of Leptospira rapidly disseminate to multiple tissues where this bacterium damages host endothelial cells, increasing vascular permeability. Despite the burden in humans and animals, the pathogenic mechanisms of Leptospira infection remain to be elucidated. The pathogenic leptospires adhere to endothelial cells and permeabilize endothelial barriers in vivo and in vitro. In this study, human endothelial cells were infected with the pathogenic L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni or the saprophyte L. biflexa serovar Patoc to investigate morphological changes and other distinctive phenotypes of host cell proteins by fluorescence microscopy. Among those analyzed, 17 proteins from five biological classes demonstrated distinctive phenotypes in morphology and/or signal intensity upon infection with Leptospira. The affected biological groups include: 1 extracellular matrix, 2 intercellular adhesion molecules and cell surface receptors, 3 intracellular proteins, 4 cell-cell junction proteins, and 5 a cytoskeletal protein. Infection with the pathogenic strain most profoundly disturbed the biological structures of adherens junctions (VE-cadherin and catenins and actin filaments. Our data illuminate morphological disruptions and reduced signals of cell-cell junction proteins and filamentous actin in L. interrogans-infected endothelial cells. In addition, Leptospira infection, regardless of pathogenic status, influenced other host proteins belonging to multiple biological classes. Our data suggest that this zoonotic agent may damage endothelial cells via multiple cascades or

  3. Leptospira interrogans causes quantitative and morphological disturbances in adherens junctions and other biological groups of proteins in human endothelial cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Hiromi

    2017-01-01

    Pathogenic Leptospira transmits from animals to humans, causing the zoonotic life-threatening infection called leptospirosis. This infection is reported worldwide with higher risk in tropical regions. Symptoms of leptospirosis range from mild illness to severe illness such as liver damage, kidney failure, respiratory distress, meningitis, and fatal hemorrhagic disease. Invasive species of Leptospira rapidly disseminate to multiple tissues where this bacterium damages host endothelial cells, increasing vascular permeability. Despite the burden in humans and animals, the pathogenic mechanisms of Leptospira infection remain to be elucidated. The pathogenic leptospires adhere to endothelial cells and permeabilize endothelial barriers in vivo and in vitro. In this study, human endothelial cells were infected with the pathogenic L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni or the saprophyte L. biflexa serovar Patoc to investigate morphological changes and other distinctive phenotypes of host cell proteins by fluorescence microscopy. Among those analyzed, 17 proteins from five biological classes demonstrated distinctive phenotypes in morphology and/or signal intensity upon infection with Leptospira. The affected biological groups include: 1) extracellular matrix, 2) intercellular adhesion molecules and cell surface receptors, 3) intracellular proteins, 4) cell-cell junction proteins, and 5) a cytoskeletal protein. Infection with the pathogenic strain most profoundly disturbed the biological structures of adherens junctions (VE-cadherin and catenins) and actin filaments. Our data illuminate morphological disruptions and reduced signals of cell-cell junction proteins and filamentous actin in L. interrogans-infected endothelial cells. In addition, Leptospira infection, regardless of pathogenic status, influenced other host proteins belonging to multiple biological classes. Our data suggest that this zoonotic agent may damage endothelial cells via multiple cascades or pathways

  4. A cell junction pathology of neural stem cells leads to abnormal neurogenesis and hydrocephalus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodríguez, Esteban M; Guerra, María M; Vío, Karin; González, César; Ortloff, Alexander; Bátiz, Luis F; Rodríguez, Sara; Jara, María C; Muñoz, Rosa I; Ortega, Eduardo; Jaque, Jaime; Guerra, Francisco; Sival, Deborah A; den Dunnen, Wilfred F A; Jiménez, Antonio J; Domínguez-Pinos, María D; Pérez-Fígares, José M; McAllister, James P; Johanson, Conrad

    2012-01-01

    Most cells of the developing mammalian brain derive from the ventricular (VZ) and the subventricular (SVZ) zones. The VZ is formed by the multipotent radial glia/neural stem cells (NSCs) while the SVZ harbors the rapidly proliferative neural precursor cells (NPCs). Evidence from human and animal

  5. Membrane junctions in Xenopus eggs: their distribution suggests a role in calcium regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardiner, D M; Grey, R D

    1983-04-01

    We have observed the presence of membrane junctions formed between the plasma membrane and cortical endoplasmic reticulum of mature, unactivated eggs of xenopus laevis. The parallel, paired membranes of the junction are separated by a 10-mn gap within which electron-dense material is present. This material occurs in patches with an average center-to-center distance of approximately 30 nm. These junctions are rare in immature (but fully grown) oocytes (approximately 2 percent of the plasma membrane is associated with junctions) and increase dramatically during progesterone-induced maturation. Junctions in the mature, unactivated egg are two to three times more abundant in the animal hemisphere (25-30 percent of the plasma membrane associated with junction) as compared with the vegetal hemisphere (10-15 percent). Junction density decreases rapidly to values characteristic of immature oocytes in response to egg activation. The plasma membrane-ER junctions of xenopus eggs are strikingly similar in structure to membrane junctions in muscle cells thought to be essential in the triggering of intracellular calcium release from the sarcoplasmic reticulum. In addition, the junctions' distinctive, animal-vegetal polarity of distribution, their dramatic appearance during maturation, and their disapperance during activation are correlated with previously documented patterns of calcium-mediated events in anuran eggs. We discuss several lines of evidence supporting the hypothesis that these junctions in xenopus eggs are sites that transduce extracellular events into intracellular calcium release during fertilization and activation of development.

  6. Triple-junction thin-film silicon solar cell fabricated on periodically textured substrate with a stabilized efficiency of 13.6%

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sai, Hitoshi; Matsui, Takuya; Koida, Takashi; Matsubara, Koji; Kondo, Michio; Sugiyama, Shuichiro; Katayama, Hirotaka; Takeuchi, Yoshiaki; Yoshida, Isao

    2015-05-01

    We report a high-efficiency triple-junction thin-film silicon solar cell fabricated with the so-called substrate configuration. It was verified whether the design criteria for developing single-junction microcrystalline silicon (μc-Si:H) solar cells are applicable to multijunction solar cells. Furthermore, a notably high short-circuit current density of 32.9 mA/cm2 was achieved in a single-junction μc-Si:H cell fabricated on a periodically textured substrate with a high-mobility front transparent contacting layer. These technologies were also combined into a-Si:H/μc-Si:H/μc-Si:H triple-junction cells, and a world record stabilized efficiency of 13.6% was achieved.

  7. Effects of Different Solvents on the Planar Hetero-junction Perovskite Solar Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Shunquan

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The perovskite (CH3NH3PbI3 films on the planar hetero-junction perovskite solar cells (PHJ-PSCs are fabricated by “two-steps” process with the wet spin-coating method. The precursor (PbI2 solutions are compounded with 4 types of solvents: N-Methyl Pyrrolidone (NMP, γ-butyrolactone (GBL, Dimethyl Sulfoxide (DMSO and N, N-dimethylformamide (DMF. All the solutions have the same concentration. The influences of different precursor solvents to the micro-structures of CH3NH3PbI3 films and device performance are studied. Atomic force microscopy (AFM and scanning electron microscope (SEM are used to characterize the CH3NH3PbI3 films. The results indicate that the CH3NH3PbI3 film using DMF solvent possesses more rough morphology and thickest thickness. The monolithic PHJ-PSCs devices based on DMF solvent are tested under a standard one sun of simulated solar irradiation (AM1.5. The results show that the open-circuit voltage (Voc reaches 872mV, the short-circuit current (Jsc reaches 9.35mA/cm2, the filling factor(FF is 0.62 and the photo-current conversion efficiency (PCE is 5.05%. DMF is the best one among these 4 types of solvents for PHJ-PSCs.

  8. Mo1-xWxSe2-Based Schottky Junction Photovoltaic Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Sum-Gyun; Kim, Sung Hyun; Park, Sungjin; Oh, Donggun; Choi, Hwan Young; Lee, Nara; Choi, Young Jai; Yoo, Kyung-Hwa

    2016-12-14

    We developed Schottky junction photovoltaic cells based on multilayer Mo 1-x W x Se 2 with x = 0, 0.5, and 1. To generate built-in potentials, Pd and Al were used as the source and drain electrodes in a lateral structure, and Pd and graphene were used as the bottom and top electrodes in a vertical structure. These devices exhibited gate-tunable diode-like current rectification and photovoltaic responses. Mo 0.5 W 0.5 Se 2 Schottky diodes with Pd and Al electrodes exhibited higher photovoltaic efficiency than MoSe 2 and WSe 2 devices with Pd and Al electrodes, likely because of the greater adjusted band alignment in Mo 0.5 W 0.5 Se 2 devices. Furthermore, we showed that Mo 0.5 W 0.5 Se 2 -based vertical Schottky diodes yield a power conversion efficiency of ∼16% under 532 nm light and ∼13% under a standard air mass 1.5 spectrum, demonstrating their remarkable potential for photovoltaic applications.

  9. Many-junction photovoltaic device performance under non-uniform high-concentration illumination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdivia, Christopher E.; Wilkins, Matthew M.; Chahal, Sanmeet S.; Proulx, Francine; Provost, Philippe-Olivier; Masson, Denis P.; Fafard, Simon; Hinzer, Karin

    2017-09-01

    A parameterized 3D distributed circuit model was developed to calculate the performance of III-V solar cells and photonic power converters (PPC) with a variable number of epitaxial vertically-stacked pn junctions. PPC devices are designed with many pn junctions to realize higher voltages and to operate under non-uniform illumination profiles from a laser or LED. Performance impacts of non-uniform illumination were greatly reduced with increasing number of junctions, with simulations comparing PPC devices with 3 to 20 junctions. Experimental results using Azastra Opto's 12- and 20-junction PPC illuminated by an 845 nm diode laser show high performance even with a small gap between the PPC and optical fiber output, until the local tunnel junction limit is reached.

  10. Exceptionally omnidirectional broadband light harvesting scheme for multi-junction concentrator solar cells achieved via ZnO nanoneedles

    KAUST Repository

    Yeh, Li-Ko; Tian, Wei-Cheng; Lai, Kun-Yu; He, Jr-Hau

    2016-01-01

    GaInP/GaAs/Ge triple-junction concentrator solar cells with significant efficiency enhancement were demonstrated with antireflective ZnO nanoneedles. The novel nanostructure was attained with a Zn(NO3)2-based solution containing vitamin C. Under one sun AM 1.5G solar spectrum, conversion efficiency of the triple-junction device was improved by 23.7% via broadband improvement in short-circuit currents of 3 sub-cells after the coverage by the nanoneedles with a graded refractive index profile. The efficiency enhancement further went up to 45.8% at 100 suns. The performance boost through the nanoneedles also became increasingly pronounced in the conditions of high incident angles and the cloudy weather, e.g. 220.0% of efficiency enhancement was observed at the incident angle of 60°. These results were attributed to the exceptional broadband omnidirectionality of the antireflective nanoneedles.

  11. Exceptionally omnidirectional broadband light harvesting scheme for multi-junction concentrator solar cells achieved via ZnO nanoneedles

    KAUST Repository

    Yeh, Li-Ko

    2016-12-14

    GaInP/GaAs/Ge triple-junction concentrator solar cells with significant efficiency enhancement were demonstrated with antireflective ZnO nanoneedles. The novel nanostructure was attained with a Zn(NO3)2-based solution containing vitamin C. Under one sun AM 1.5G solar spectrum, conversion efficiency of the triple-junction device was improved by 23.7% via broadband improvement in short-circuit currents of 3 sub-cells after the coverage by the nanoneedles with a graded refractive index profile. The efficiency enhancement further went up to 45.8% at 100 suns. The performance boost through the nanoneedles also became increasingly pronounced in the conditions of high incident angles and the cloudy weather, e.g. 220.0% of efficiency enhancement was observed at the incident angle of 60°. These results were attributed to the exceptional broadband omnidirectionality of the antireflective nanoneedles.

  12. Performance of ultra high efficiency thin germanium p-n junction solar cells intended for solar thermophotovoltaic application

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vera, E S; Loferski, J J; Spitzer, M; Schewchun, J

    1981-01-01

    The theoretical upper limit conversion efficiency as a function of cell thickness and junction position is calculated for a germanium p-n junction solar cell intended for solar thermophotovoltaic energy conversion which incorporates minority carrier mirrors and optical mirrors on both the front and back boundaries of the active part of the device. The optical mirrors provide light confinement reducing the thickness required for optimum performance while minority carrier mirrors diminish surface recombination of carriers which seriously reduce short circuit current and limit open circuit voltage. The role of non-ideal optical and minority carrier mirrors and the effect of resistivity variations are studied. The calculations are conducted under conditions of high incident power (2-25 W/cm/sup 2/) which are encountered in solar thermophotovoltaic energy conversion systems. 14 refs.

  13. START-GAP3/DLC3 is a GAP for RhoA and Cdc42 and is localized in focal adhesions regulating cell morphology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kawai, Katsuhisa; Kiyota, Minoru; Seike, Junichi; Deki, Yuko; Yagisawa, Hitoshi

    2007-01-01

    In the human genome there are three genes encoding RhoGAPs that contain the START (steroidogenic acute regulatory protein (StAR)-related lipid transfer)-domain. START-GAP3/DLC3 is a tumor suppressor gene similar to two other human START-GAPs known as DLC1 or DLC2. Although expression of START-GAP3/DLC3 inhibits the proliferation of cancer cells, its molecular function is not well understood. In this study we carried out biochemical characterization of START-GAP3/DLC3, and explored the effects of its expression on cell morphology and intracellular localization. We found that START-GAP3/DLC3 serves as a stimulator of PLCδ1 and as a GAP for both RhoA and Cdc42 in vitro. Moreover, we found that the GAP activity is responsible for morphological changes. The intracellular localization of endogenous START-GAP3/DLC3 was explored by immunocytochemistry and was revealed in focal adhesions. These results indicate that START-GAP3/DLC3 has characteristics similar to other START-GAPs and the START-GAP family seems to share common characteristics

  14. Activation of the Small GTPase Rap1 Inhibits Choroidal Neovascularization by Regulating Cell Junctions and ROS Generation in Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jiajia; Zhang, Rong; Wang, Caixia; Wang, Xin; Xu, Man; Ma, Jingxue; Shang, Qingli

    2018-03-30

    Choroidal neovascularization (CNV) is a common vision-threatening complication associated with many  fundus diseases. The retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cell junction barrier has critical functions in preventing CNV, and oxidative stress can cause compromise of barrier integrity and induce angiogenesis. Rap1, a small guanosine triphosphatase (GTPase), is involved in regulating endothelial and epithelial cell junctions. In this work, we explored the function and mechanism of Rap1 in CNV in vivo. A laser-induced rat CNV model was developed. Rap1 was activated through intravitreal injection of the Rap1 activator 8CPT-2'-O-Me-cAMP (8CPT). At 14 days after laser treatment, CNV size in RPE/choroid flat mounts was measured by fluorescein isothiocyanate-dextran staining. Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and cell junction proteins in RPE/choroid tissues were analyzed by western blots and quantitative real-time PCR assays. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) in RPE cells were detectedbydichloro-dihydro-fluorescein diacetate assays. The antioxidant apocynin was intraperitoneally injected into rats. Activating Rap1 by 8CPT significantly reduced CNV size and VEGF expression in the rat CNV model. Rap1 activation enhanced protein and mRNA levels of ZO-1 and occludin, two tight junction proteins in the RPE barrier. In addition, reducing ROS generation by injection of apocynin, a NADPH oxidase inhibitor, inhibited CNV formation. Rap1 activation reduced ROS generation and expression of NADPH oxidase 4. Rap1 activation inhibits CNV through regulating barrier integrity and ROS generation of RPE in vivo, and selectively activating Rap1 may be a way to reduce vision loss from CNV.

  15. Modeling of Operating Temperature Performance of Triple Junction Solar Cells Using Silvaco's ATLAS

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sanders, Michael H

    2007-01-01

    .... Building upon prior thesis work at the Naval Postgraduate School, this thesis utilizes Silvaco's ATLAS software as a tool to simulate the performance of a typical InGaP/GaAs/Ge multi-junction solar...

  16. Feasibilty of a Multi-bit Cell Perpendicular Magnetic Tunnel Junction Device

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Chang Soo

    The ultimate objective of this research project was to explore the feasibility of making a multi-bit cell perpendicular magnetic tunnel junction (PMTJ) device to increase the storage density of spin-transfer-torque random access memory (STT-RAM). As a first step toward demonstrating a multi-bit cell device, this dissertation contributed a systematic and detailed study of developing a single cell PMTJ device using L10 FePt films. In the beginning of this research, 13 up-and-coming non-volatile memory (NVM) technologies were investigated and evaluated to see whether one of them might outperform NAND flash memories and even HDDs on a cost-per-TB basis in 2020. This evaluation showed that STT-RAM appears to potentially offer superior power efficiency, among other advantages. It is predicted that STTRAM's density could make it a promising candidate for replacing NAND flash memories and possibly HDDs if STTRAM could be improved to store multiple bits per cell. Ta/Mg0 under-layers were used first in order to develop (001) L1 0 ordering of FePt at a low temperature of below 400 °C. It was found that the tradeoff between surface roughness and (001) L10 ordering of FePt makes it difficult to achieve low surface roughness and good perpendicular magnetic properties simultaneously when Ta/Mg0 under-layers are used. It was, therefore, decided to investigate MgO/CrRu under-layers to simultaneously achieve smooth films with good ordering below 400°C. A well ordered 4 nm L10 FePt film with RMS surface roughness close to 0.4 nm, perpendicular coercivity of about 5 kOe, and perpendicular squareness near 1 was obtained at a deposition temperature of 390 °C on a thermally oxidized Si substrate when MgO/CrRu under-layers are used. A PMTJ device was developed by depositing a thin MgO tunnel barrier layer and a top L10 FePt film and then being postannealed at 450 °C for 30 minutes. It was found that the sputtering power needs to be minimized during the thin MgO tunnel barrier

  17. Donor and Acceptor Polymers for Bulk Hetero Junction Solar Cell and Photodetector Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Cruciani, Federico

    2018-04-01

    Bulk heterojunction (BHJ) devices represent a very versatile family of organic cells for both the fields of solar energy conversion and photodetection. Organic photovoltaics (OPV) are an attractive alternative to their silicon-based counterparts because of their potential for low-cost roll-to-roll printing, and their intended application in light-weight mechanically conformable devices and in window-type semi-transparent PV modules. Of all proposed OPV candidates, polymer donor with different absorption range are especially promising when used in conjunction with complementary absorbing acceptor materials, like fullerene derivatives (PCBM), conjugated molecules or polymers, achieving nowadays power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) in the range of 10-13% and being a step closer to practical applications. Among the photodetectors (PD), low band gap polymer blended with PCBM decked out the attention, given their extraordinary range of detection from UV to IR and high detectivity values reached so far, compared to the inorganic devices. Since the research has been focused on the enhancement of those numbers for an effective commercialization of organic cells, the topic of the following thesis has been centered on the synthesis of different polymer structures with diverse absorption ranges, used as donor or acceptor, with emphasis on performance in various BHJ devices either for solar cells and photodetectors. In the first part, two new wide band gap polymers, used as donor material in BHJ devices blended with fullerene and small molecule acceptors, are presented. The PBDT_2FT and PBDTT_2FT have shown nice efficiencies from 7% to 9.8%. The device results are implemented with a morphology study and a specific application in a semi-transparent tandem device, reaching a record PCE of 5.4% for average level of transparency of 48%. In another section two new low band gap polymers (Eopt~ 1.26 eV) named DTP_2FBT and (Eopt~ 1.1 eV) named BDTT_BTQ are presented. While the DTP

  18. Expression patterns of tight junction components induced by CD24 in an oral epithelial cell-culture model correlated to affected periodontal tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, P; Yu, H; Simonian, M; Hunter, N

    2014-04-01

    Previously we demonstrated uniformly strong expression of CD24 in the epithelial attachment to the tooth and in the migrating epithelium of the periodontitis lesion. Titers of serum antibodies autoreactive with CD24 peptide correlated with reduced severity of periodontal disease. Ligation of CD24 expressed by oral epithelial cells induced formation of tight junctions that limited paracellular diffusion. In this study, we aimed to reveal that the lack of uniform expression of tight junction components in the pocket epithelium of periodontitis lesions is likely to contribute to increased paracellular permeability to bacterial products. This is proposed as a potential driver of the immunopathology of periodontitis. An epithelial culture model with close correspondence for expression patterns for tight junction components in periodontal epithelia was used. Immunohistochemical staining and confocal laser scanning microscopy were used to analyse patterns of expression of gingival epithelial tight junction components. The minimally inflamed gingival attachment was characterized by uniformly strong staining at cell contacts for the tight junction components zona occludens-1, zona occludens-2, occludin, junction adhesion molecule-A, claudin-4 and claudin-15. In contrast, the pocket epithelium of the periodontal lesion showed scattered, uneven staining for these components. This pattern correlated closely with that of unstimulated oral epithelial cells in culture. Following ligation of CD24 expressed by these cells, the pattern of tight junction component expression of the minimally inflamed gingival attachment developed rapidly. There was evidence for non-uniform and focal expression only of tight junction components in the pocket epithelium. In the cell-culture model, ligation of CD24 induced a tight junction expression profile equivalent to that observed for the minimally inflamed gingival attachment. Ligation of CD24 expressed by gingival epithelial cells by lectin

  19. Investigation of room-temperature wafer bonded GaInP/GaAs/InGaAsP triple-junction solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Wen-xian; Dai, Pan; Ji, Lian; Tan, Ming; Wu, Yuan-yuan [Key Lab of Nanodevices and Applications, Suzhou Institute of Nano-Tech and Nano-Bionics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Suzhou 215123 (China); Uchida, Shiro [Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering Faculty of Engineering, Chiba Institute of Technology, 2-17-1, Tsudanuma, Narashino, Chiba 275-0016 (Japan); Lu, Shu-long, E-mail: sllu2008@sinano.ac.cn [Key Lab of Nanodevices and Applications, Suzhou Institute of Nano-Tech and Nano-Bionics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Suzhou 215123 (China); Yang, Hui [Key Lab of Nanodevices and Applications, Suzhou Institute of Nano-Tech and Nano-Bionics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Suzhou 215123 (China)

    2016-12-15

    Highlights: • High quality InGaAsP material with a bandgap of 1.0 eV was grown by MBE. • Room-temperature wafer-bonded GaInP/GaAs/InGaAsP SCs were fabricated. • An efficiency of 30.3% of wafer-bonded triple-junction SCs was obtained. - Abstract: We report on the fabrication of III–V compound semiconductor multi-junction solar cells using the room-temperature wafer bonding technique. GaInP/GaAs dual-junction solar cells on GaAs substrate and InGaAsP single junction solar cell on InP substrate were separately grown by all-solid state molecular beam epitaxy (MBE). The two cells were then bonded to a triple-junction solar cell at room-temperature. A conversion efficiency of 30.3% of GaInP/GaAs/InGaAsP wafer-bonded solar cell was obtained at 1-sun condition under the AM1.5G solar simulator. The result suggests that the room-temperature wafer bonding technique and MBE technique have a great potential to improve the performance of multi-junction solar cell.

  20. A multiple p-n junction structure obtained from as-grown Czochralski silicon crystals by heat treatment - Application to solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chi, J. Y.; Gatos, H. C.; Mao, B. Y.

    1980-01-01

    Multiple p-n junctions have been prepared in as-grown Czochralski p-type silicon through overcompensation near the oxygen periodic concentration maxima by oxygen thermal donors generated during heat treatment at 450 C. Application of the multiple p-n-junction configuration to photovoltaic energy conversion has been investigated. A new solar-cell structure based on multiple p-n-junctions was developed. Theoretical analysis showed that a significant increase in collection efficiency over the conventional solar cells can be achieved.

  1. Triple Junction InGaP/GaAs/Ge Solar Cell Optimization: The Design Parameters for a 36.2% Efficient Space Cell Using Silvaco ATLAS Modeling & Simulation

    OpenAIRE

    Tsutagawa, Michael H.; Michael, Sherif

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents the design parameters for a triple junction InGaP/GaAs/Ge space solar cell with a simulated maximum efficiency of 36.28% using Silvaco ATLAS Virtual Wafer Fabrication tool. Design parameters include the layer material, doping concentration, and thicknesses.

  2. Reprogramming of cell junction modules during stepwise epithelial to mesenchymal transition and accumulation of malignant features in vitro in a prostate cell model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ke, Xi-song; Li, Wen-cheng; Hovland, Randi; Qu, Yi; Liu, Run-hui; McCormack, Emmet; Thorsen, Frits; Olsen, Jan Roger; Molven, Anders; Kogan-Sakin, Ira; Rotter, Varda; Akslen, Lars A.; Oyan, Anne Margrete; Kalland, Karl-Henning

    2011-01-01

    Epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) is pivotal in tumor metastasis. Our previous work reported an EMT model based on primary prostate epithelial cells (EP156T) which gave rise to cells with mesenchymal phenotype (EPT1) without malignant transformation. To promote prostate cell transformation, cells were maintained in saturation density cultures to select for cells overriding quiescence. Foci formed repeatedly following around 8 weeks in confluent EPT1 monolayers. Only later passage EPT1, but not EP156T cells of any passage, could form foci. Cells isolated from the foci were named EPT2 and formed robust colonies in soft agar, a malignant feature present neither in EP156T nor in EPT1 cells. EPT2 cells showed additional malignant traits in vitro, including higher ability to proliferate following confluence, higher resistance to apoptosis and lower dependence on exogenous growth factors than EP156T and EPT1 cells. Microarray profiling identified gene sets, many of which belong to cell junction modules, that changed expression from EP156T to EPT1 cells and continued to change from EPT1 to EPT2 cells. Our findings provide a novel stepwise cell culture model in which EMT emerges independently of transformation and is associated with subsequent accumulation of malignant features in prostate cells. Reprogramming of cell junction modules is involved in both steps.

  3. Blocking junctional adhesion molecule C enhances dendritic cell migration and boosts the immune responses against Leishmania major.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romain Ballet

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The recruitment of dendritic cells to sites of infections and their migration to lymph nodes is fundamental for antigen processing and presentation to T cells. In the present study, we showed that antibody blockade of junctional adhesion molecule C (JAM-C on endothelial cells removed JAM-C away from junctions and increased vascular permeability after L. major infection. This has multiple consequences on the output of the immune response. In resistant C57BL/6 and susceptible BALB/c mice, we found higher numbers of innate immune cells migrating from blood to the site of infection. The subsequent migration of dendritic cells (DCs from the skin to the draining lymph node was also improved, thereby boosting the induction of the adaptive immune response. In C57BL/6 mice, JAM-C blockade after L. major injection led to an enhanced IFN-γ dominated T helper 1 (Th1 response with reduced skin lesions and parasite burden. Conversely, anti JAM-C treatment increased the IL-4-driven T helper 2 (Th2 response in BALB/c mice with disease exacerbation. Overall, our results show that JAM-C blockade can finely-tune the innate cell migration and accelerate the consequent immune response to L. major without changing the type of the T helper cell response.

  4. miR-Let7A Controls the Cell Death and Tight Junction Density of Brain Endothelial Cells under High Glucose Condition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Juhyun; Yoon, So Ra; Kim, Oh Yoen

    2017-01-01

    Hyperglycemia-induced stress in the brain of patients with diabetes triggers the disruption of blood-brain barrier (BBB), leading to diverse neurological diseases including stroke and dementia. Recently, the role of microRNA becomes an interest in the research for deciphering the mechanism of brain endothelial cell damage under hyperglycemia. Therefore, we investigated whether mircoRNA Let7A (miR-Let7A) controls the damage of brain endothelial (bEnd.3) cells against high glucose condition. Cell viability, cell death marker expressions (p-53, Bax, and cleaved poly ADP-ribose polymerase), the loss of tight junction proteins (ZO-1 and claudin-5), proinflammatory response (interleukin-6, tumor necrosis factor- α ), inducible nitric oxide synthase, and nitrite production were confirmed using MTT, reverse transcription-PCR, quantitative-PCR, Western blotting, immunofluorescence, and Griess reagent assay. miR-Let7A overexpression significantly prevented cell death and loss of tight junction proteins and attenuated proinflammatory response and nitrite production in the bEnd.3 cells under high glucose condition. Taken together, we suggest that miR-Let7A may attenuate brain endothelial cell damage by controlling cell death signaling, loss of tight junction proteins, and proinflammatory response against high glucose stress. In the future, the manipulation of miR-Let7A may be a novel solution in controlling BBB disruption which leads to the central nervous system diseases.

  5. Epidermis–dermis junction as a novel location for bone marrow-derived cells to reside in response to ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Okano, Junko; Kojima, Hideto; Katagi, Miwako; Nakae, Yuki; Terashima, Tomoya; Nakagawa, Takahiko; Kurakane, Takeshi; Okamoto, Naoki; Morohashi, Keita; Maegawa, Hiroshi; Udagawa, Jun

    2015-01-01

    Bone marrow-derived cells (BMDCs) can migrate into the various organs in the mice irradiated by ionizing radiation (IR). However, it may not be the case in the skin. While IR is used for bone marrow (BM) transplantation, studying with the epidermal sheets demonstrated that the BMDC recruitment is extraordinarily rare in epidermis in the mouse. Herein, using the chimera mice with BM from green fluorescent protein (GFP) transgenic mice, we simply examined if BMDCs migrate into any layers in the total skin, as opposed to the epidermal sheets, in response to IR. Interestingly, we identified the presence of GFP-positive (GFP + ) cells in the epidermis-dermis junction in the total skin sections although the epidermal cell sheets failed to have any GFP cells. To examine a possibility that the cells in the junction could be mechanically dissociated during separating epidermal sheets, we then salvaged such dissociated cells and examined its characteristics. Surprisingly, some GFP + cells were found in the salvaged cells, indicating that these cells could be derived from BM. In addition, such BMDCs were also associated with inflammation in the junction. In conclusion, BMDCs can migrate to and reside in the epidermis-dermis junction after IR. - Highlights: • Bone marrow-derived cells (BMDCs) migrate in the epidermis due to ionizing radiation (IR). • BMDCs dissociate from the epidermis-dermis junction in preparing epidermal sheets. • The doses of IR determine the location and the number of migrating BMDCs in the skin

  6. Epidermis–dermis junction as a novel location for bone marrow-derived cells to reside in response to ionizing radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Okano, Junko, E-mail: jokano@belle.shiga-med.ac.jp [Division of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Shiga University of Medical Science, Shiga (Japan); Kojima, Hideto; Katagi, Miwako [Department of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Shiga University of Medical Science, Shiga (Japan); Nakae, Yuki [Department of Internal Medicine, Shiga University of Medical Science, Shiga (Japan); Terashima, Tomoya [Department of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Shiga University of Medical Science, Shiga (Japan); Nakagawa, Takahiko [TMK Project, Medical Innovation Center, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto (Japan); Kurakane, Takeshi; Okamoto, Naoki; Morohashi, Keita [Division of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Shiga University of Medical Science, Shiga (Japan); Maegawa, Hiroshi [Department of Internal Medicine, Shiga University of Medical Science, Shiga (Japan); Udagawa, Jun [Division of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Shiga University of Medical Science, Shiga (Japan)

    2015-06-12

    Bone marrow-derived cells (BMDCs) can migrate into the various organs in the mice irradiated by ionizing radiation (IR). However, it may not be the case in the skin. While IR is used for bone marrow (BM) transplantation, studying with the epidermal sheets demonstrated that the BMDC recruitment is extraordinarily rare in epidermis in the mouse. Herein, using the chimera mice with BM from green fluorescent protein (GFP) transgenic mice, we simply examined if BMDCs migrate into any layers in the total skin, as opposed to the epidermal sheets, in response to IR. Interestingly, we identified the presence of GFP-positive (GFP{sup +}) cells in the epidermis-dermis junction in the total skin sections although the epidermal cell sheets failed to have any GFP cells. To examine a possibility that the cells in the junction could be mechanically dissociated during separating epidermal sheets, we then salvaged such dissociated cells and examined its characteristics. Surprisingly, some GFP{sup +} cells were found in the salvaged cells, indicating that these cells could be derived from BM. In addition, such BMDCs were also associated with inflammation in the junction. In conclusion, BMDCs can migrate to and reside in the epidermis-dermis junction after IR. - Highlights: • Bone marrow-derived cells (BMDCs) migrate in the epidermis due to ionizing radiation (IR). • BMDCs dissociate from the epidermis-dermis junction in preparing epidermal sheets. • The doses of IR determine the location and the number of migrating BMDCs in the skin.

  7. 'Special K' and a Loss of Cell-To-Cell Adhesion in Proximal Tubule-Derived Epithelial Cells: Modulation of the Adherens Junction Complex by Ketamine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hills, Claire E.; Jin, Tianrong; Siamantouras, Eleftherios; Liu, Issac K-K; Jefferson, Kieran P.; Squires, Paul E.

    2013-01-01

    Ketamine, a mild hallucinogenic class C drug, is the fastest growing ‘party drug’ used by 16–24 year olds in the UK. As the recreational use of Ketamine increases we are beginning to see the signs of major renal and bladder complications. To date however, we know nothing of a role for Ketamine in modulating both structure and function of the human renal proximal tubule. In the current study we have used an established model cell line for human epithelial cells of the proximal tubule (HK2) to demonstrate that Ketamine evokes early changes in expression of proteins central to the adherens junction complex. Furthermore we use AFM single-cell force spectroscopy to assess if these changes functionally uncouple cells of the proximal tubule ahead of any overt loss in epithelial cell function. Our data suggests that Ketamine (24–48 hrs) produces gross changes in cell morphology and cytoskeletal architecture towards a fibrotic phenotype. These physical changes matched the concentration-dependent (0.1–1 mg/mL) cytotoxic effect of Ketamine and reflect a loss in expression of the key adherens junction proteins epithelial (E)- and neural (N)-cadherin and β-catenin. Down-regulation of protein expression does not involve the pro-fibrotic cytokine TGFβ, nor is it regulated by the usual increase in expression of Slug or Snail, the transcriptional regulators for E-cadherin. However, the loss in E-cadherin can be partially rescued pharmacologically by blocking p38 MAPK using SB203580. These data provide compelling evidence that Ketamine alters epithelial cell-to-cell adhesion and cell-coupling in the proximal kidney via a non-classical pro-fibrotic mechanism and the data provides the first indication that this illicit substance can have major implications on renal function. Understanding Ketamine-induced renal pathology may identify targets for future therapeutic intervention. PMID:24009666

  8. GaAsP on GaP top solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcneely, J. B.; Negley, G. H.; Barnett, A. M.

    1985-01-01

    GaAsP on GaP top solar cells as an attachment to silicon bottom solar cells are being developed. The GaAsP on GaP system offers several advantages for this top solar cell. The most important is that the gallium phosphide substrate provides a rugged, transparent mechanical substrate which does not have to be removed or thinned during processing. Additional advantages are that: (1) gallium phosphide is more oxidation resistant than the III-V aluminum compounds, (2) a range of energy band gaps higher than 1.75 eV is readily available for system efficiency optimization, (3) reliable ohmic contact technology is available from the light-emitting diode industry, and (4) the system readily lends itself to graded band gap structures for additional increases in efficiency.

  9. InP tunnel junctions for InP/InGaAs tandem solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilela, Mauro F.; Freundlich, Alex; Renaud, P.; Medelci, N.; Bensaoula, A.

    1996-01-01

    We report, for the first time, an epitaxially grown InP p(+)/n(++) tunnel junction. A diode with peak current densities up to 1600 A/cm and maximum specific resistivities (Vp/Ip - peak voltage to peak current ratio) in the range of 10(exp -4)Omega cm(exp 2) is obtained. This peak current density is comparable to the highest results previously reported for lattice matched In(0.53)Ga(0.47)As tunnel junctions. Both results were obtained using chemical beam epitaxy (CBE). In this paper we discuss the electrical characteristics of these tunnel diodes and how the growth conditions influence them.

  10. Composite Transparent Electrode of Graphene Nanowalls and Silver Nanowires on Micropyramidal Si for High-Efficiency Schottky Junction Solar Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiao, Tianpeng; Liu, Jian; Wei, Dapeng; Feng, Yanhui; Song, Xuefen; Shi, Haofei; Jia, Shuming; Sun, Wentao; Du, Chunlei

    2015-09-16

    The conventional graphene-silicon Schottky junction solar cell inevitably involves the graphene growth and transfer process, which results in complicated technology, loss of quality of the graphene, extra cost, and environmental unfriendliness. Moreover, the conventional transfer method is not well suited to conformationally coat graphene on a three-dimensional (3D) silicon surface. Thus, worse interfacial conditions are inevitable. In this work, we directly grow graphene nanowalls (GNWs) onto the micropyramidal silicon (MP) by the plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition method. By controlling growth time, the cell exhibits optimal pristine photovoltaic performance of 3.8%. Furthermore, we improve the conductivity of the GNW electrode by introducing the silver nanowire (AgNW) network, which could achieve lower sheet resistance. An efficiency of 6.6% has been obtained for the AgNWs-GNWs-MP solar cell without any chemical doping. Meanwhile, the cell exhibits excellent stability exposed to air. Our studies show a promising way to develop simple-technology, low-cost, high-efficiency, and stable Schottky junction solar cells.

  11. Bridging the gap between cell culture and live tissue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Przyborski

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Traditional in vitro two-dimensional (2-D culture systems only partly imitate the physiological and biochemical features of cells in their original tissue. In vivo, in organs and tissues, cells are surrounded by a three-dimensional (3-D organization of supporting matrix and neighbouring cells, and a gradient of chemical and mechanical signals. Furthermore, the presence of blood flow and mechanical movement provides a dynamic environment (Jong et al., 2011. In contrast, traditional in vitro culture, carried out on 2-D plastic or glass substrates, typically provides a static environment, which, however is the base of the present understanding of many biological processes, tissue homeostasis as well as disease. It is clear that this is not an exact representation of what is happening in vivo and the microenvironment provided by in vitro cell culture models are significantly different and can cause deviations in cell response and behaviour from those distinctive of in vivo tissues. In order to translate the present basic knowledge in cell control, cell repair and regeneration from the laboratory bench to the clinical application, we need a better understanding of the cell and tissue interactions. This implies a detailed comprehension of the natural tissue environment, with its organization and local signals, in order to more closely mimic what happens in vivo, developing more physiological models for efficient in vitro systems. In particular, it is imperative to understand the role of the environmental cues which can be mainly divided into those of a chemical and mechanical nature.

  12. Rac1 activation inhibits E-cadherin-mediated adherens junctions via binding to IQGAP1 in pancreatic carcinoma cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giehl Klaudia

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Monomeric GTPases of the Rho family control a variety of cellular functions including actin cytoskeleton organisation, cell migration and cell adhesion. Defects in these regulatory processes are involved in tumour progression and metastasis. The development of metastatic carcinoma is accompanied by deregulation of adherens junctions, which are composed of E-cadherin/β- and α-catenin complexes. Results Here, we show that the activity of the monomeric GTPase Rac1 contributes to inhibition of E-cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion in pancreatic carcinoma cells. Stable expression of constitutively active Rac1(V12 reduced the amount of E-cadherin on protein level in PANC-1 pancreatic carcinoma cells, whereas expression of dominant negative Rac1(N17 resulted in an increased amount of E-cadherin. Extraction of proteins associated with the actin cytoskeleton as well as coimmunoprecipitation analyses demonstrated markedly decreased amounts of E-cadherin/catenin complexes in Rac1(V12-expressing cells, but increased amounts of functional E-cadherin/catenin complexes in cells expressing Rac1(N17. Cell aggregation and migration assays revealed, that cells containing less E-cadherin due to expression of Rac1(V12, exhibited reduced cell-cell adhesion and increased cell motility. The Rac/Cdc42 effector protein IQGAP1 has been implicated in regulating cell-cell adhesion. Coimmunoprecipitation studies showed a decrease in the association between IQGAP1 and β-catenin in Rac1(V12-expressing PANC-1 cells and an association of IQGAP1 with Rac1(V12. Elevated association of IQGAP1 with the E-cadherin adhesion complex via β-catenin correlated with increased intercellular adhesion of PANC-1 cells. Conclusion These results indicate that active Rac1 destabilises E-cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion in pancreatic carcinoma cells by interacting with IQGAP1 which is associated with a disassembly of E-cadherin-mediated adherens junctions. Inhibition

  13. Escherichia coli O157:H7 and rectoanal junction cell interactome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Introduction. Cattle are the primary E. coli O157 (O157) reservoir and principal source of human infection. The anatomical site of O157 persistence is the bovine recto-anal (RAJ) junction; hence, an in-depth understanding of O157-RAJ interactions will help develop novel modalities to limit O157 in c...

  14. Calcium oxalate crystals induces tight junction disruption in distal renal tubular epithelial cells by activating ROS/Akt/p38 MAPK signaling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Lei; Gan, Xiuguo; Liu, Xukun; An, Ruihua

    2017-11-01

    Tight junction plays important roles in regulating paracellular transports and maintaining cell polarity. Calcium oxalate monohydrate (COM) crystals, the major crystalline composition of kidney stones, have been demonstrated to be able to cause tight junction disruption to accelerate renal cell injury. However, the cellular signaling involved in COM crystal-induced tight junction disruption remains largely to be investigated. In the present study, we proved that COM crystals induced tight junction disruption by activating ROS/Akt/p38 MAPK pathway. Treating Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells with COM crystals induced a substantial increasing of ROS generation and activation of Akt that triggered subsequential activation of ASK1 and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK). Western blot revealed a significantly decreased expression of ZO-1 and occludin, two important structural proteins of tight junction. Besides, redistribution and dissociation of ZO-1 were observed by COM crystals treatment. Inhibition of ROS by N-acetyl-l-cysteine (NAC) attenuated the activation of Akt, ASK1, p38 MAPK, and down-regulation of ZO-1 and occludin. The redistribution and dissociation of ZO-1 were also alleviated by NAC treatment. These results indicated that ROS were involved in the regulation of tight junction disruption induced by COM crystals. In addition, the down-regulation of ZO-1 and occludin, the phosphorylation of ASK1 and p38 MAPK were also attenuated by MK-2206, an inhibitor of Akt kinase, implying Akt was involved in the disruption of tight junction upstream of p38 MAPK. Thus, these results suggested that ROS-Akt-p38 MAPK signaling pathway was activated in COM crystal-induced disruption of tight junction in MDCK cells.

  15. In Situ Irradiation and Measurement of Triple Junction Solar Cells at Low Intensity, Low Temperature (LILT) Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, R.D.; Imaizumi, M.; Walters, R.J.; Lorentzen, J.R.; Messenger, S.R.; Tischler, J.G.; Ohshima, T.; Sato, S.; Sharps, P.R.; Fatemi, N.S.

    2008-01-01

    The performance of triple junction InGaP/(In)GaAs/Ge space solar cells was studied following high energy electron irradiation at low temperature. Cell characterization was carried out in situ at the irradiation temperature while using low intensity illumination, and, as such, these conditions reflect those found for deep space, solar powered missions that are far from the sun. Cell characterization consisted of I-V measurements and quantum efficiency measurements. The low temperature irradiations caused substantial degradation that differs in some ways from that seen after room temperature irradiations. The short circuit current degrades more at low temperature while the open circuit voltage degrades more at room temperature. A room temperature anneal after the low temperature irradiation produced a substantial recovery in the degradation. Following irradiation at both temperatures and an extended room temperature anneal, quantum efficiency measurement suggests that the bulk of the remaining damage is in the (In)GaAs sub-cell

  16. Regional differences in endothelial cell cytoskeleton, junctional proteins and phosphorylated tyrosine labeling in the porcine vortex vein system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Priscilla Ern Zhi; Yu, Paula K; Yang, Hongfang; Cringle, Stephen J; Yu, Dao-Yi

    2018-07-01

    We previously demonstrated endothelial phenotype heterogeneity in the vortex vein system. This study is to further determine whether regional differences are present in the cytoskeleton, junctional proteins and phosphorylated tyrosine labeling within the system. The vortex vein system of twenty porcine eyes was perfused with labels for f-actin, claudin-5, VE-Cadherin, phosphorylated tyrosine and nucleic acid. The endothelial cells of eight different regions (choroidal veins, pre-ampulla, anterior ampulla, mid-ampulla, posterior ampulla, post-ampulla, intra-scleral canal and the extra-ocular vortex vein) were studied using confocal microscopy. There were regional differences in the endothelial cell structures. Cytoskeleton labeling was relatively even in intensity throughout Regions 1 to 6. Overall VE-Cadherin had a non-uniform distribution and thicker width endothelial cell border staining than claudin-5. Progressing downstream there was an increased variation in thickness of VE-cadherin labeling. There was an overlap in phosphorylated tyrosine and VE-Cadherin labeling in the post-ampulla, intra-scleral canal and extra-ocular vortex vein. Intramural cells were observed that were immune-positive for VE-Cadherin and phosphorylated tyrosine. There were significant differences in the number of intramural cells in different regions. Significant regional differences with endothelial cell labeling of cytoskeleton, junction proteins, and phosphorylated tyrosine were found within the vortex vein system. These findings support existing data on endothelial cell phenotype heterogeneity, and may aid in the knowledge of venous pathologies by understanding regions of vulnerability to endothelial damage within the vortex vein system. It could be val