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Sample records for unmistakably revealed active

  1. SAFARI: Searching Asteroids For Activity Revealing Indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Anthony; Chandler, Colin Orion; Mommert, Michael; Sheppard, Scott; Trujillo, Chadwick A.

    2018-06-01

    We present results on one of the deepest and widest systematic searches for active asteroids, objects in the main-belt which behave dynamically like asteroids but display comet-like comae. This activity comes from a variety of sources, such as the sublimation of ices or rotational breakup, the former of which offers an opportunity to study a family of protoplanetary ices different than those seen in comets and Kuiper Belt objects. Indications of activity may be detected through visual or spectroscopic evidence of gas or dust emissions. However, these objects are still poorly understood, with only about 25 identified to date. We looked for activity indicators with a pipeline that examined ~35,000 deep images taken with the Dark Energy Camera (DECam) mounted on the 4-meter Blanco telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. Our pipeline was configured to perform astrometry on DECam images and produce thumbnail images of known asteroids in the field to be examined by eye for signs of activity. We detected three previously identified active asteroids, one of which has shown repeated signs of activity in these data. Our proof of concept demonstrates 1) our novel informatics approach can locate active asteroids 2) DECam data are well suited to search for active asteroids. We will discuss the design structure of our pipeline, adjustments that had to be made for the specific dataset to improve performance, and the the significance of detecting activity in the main-belt. The authors acknowledge funding for this project through NSF grant number AST-1461200.

  2. Functional metabolomics reveals novel active products in the DHA metabolome

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    Masakazu eShinohara

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Endogenous mechanisms for successful resolution of an acute inflammatory response and the local return to homeostasis are of interest because excessive inflammation underlies many human diseases. In this review, we provide an update and overview of functional metabolomics that identified a new bioactive metabolome of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA. Systematic studies revealed that DHA was converted to DHEA-derived novel bioactive products as well as aspirin-triggered (AT forms of protectins. The new oxygenated DHEA derived products blocked PMN chemotaxis, reduced P-selectin expression and platelet-leukocyte adhesion, and showed organ protection in ischemia/reperfusion injury. These products activated cannabinoid receptor (CB2 receptor and not CB1 receptors. The AT-PD1 reduced neutrophil (PMN recruitment in murine peritonitis. With human cells, AT-PD1 decreased transendothelial PMN migration as well as enhanced efferocytosis of apoptotic human PMN by macrophages. The recent findings reviewed here indicate that DHEA oxidative metabolism and aspirin-triggered conversion of DHA produce potent novel molecules with anti-inflammatory and organ-protective properties, opening the DHA metabolome functional roles.

  3. Sequencing the extrachromosomal circular mobilome reveals retrotransposon activity in plants.

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    Sophie Lanciano

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Retrotransposons are mobile genetic elements abundant in plant and animal genomes. While efficiently silenced by the epigenetic machinery, they can be reactivated upon stress or during development. Their level of transcription not reflecting their transposition ability, it is thus difficult to evaluate their contribution to the active mobilome. Here we applied a simple methodology based on the high throughput sequencing of extrachromosomal circular DNA (eccDNA forms of active retrotransposons to characterize the repertoire of mobile retrotransposons in plants. This method successfully identified known active retrotransposons in both Arabidopsis and rice material where the epigenome is destabilized. When applying mobilome-seq to developmental stages in wild type rice, we identified PopRice as a highly active retrotransposon producing eccDNA forms in the wild type endosperm. The mobilome-seq strategy opens new routes for the characterization of a yet unexplored fraction of plant genomes.

  4. Sequencing the extrachromosomal circular mobilome reveals retrotransposon activity in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanciano, Sophie; Carpentier, Marie-Christine; Llauro, Christel; Jobet, Edouard; Robakowska-Hyzorek, Dagmara; Lasserre, Eric; Ghesquière, Alain; Panaud, Olivier; Mirouze, Marie

    2017-02-01

    Retrotransposons are mobile genetic elements abundant in plant and animal genomes. While efficiently silenced by the epigenetic machinery, they can be reactivated upon stress or during development. Their level of transcription not reflecting their transposition ability, it is thus difficult to evaluate their contribution to the active mobilome. Here we applied a simple methodology based on the high throughput sequencing of extrachromosomal circular DNA (eccDNA) forms of active retrotransposons to characterize the repertoire of mobile retrotransposons in plants. This method successfully identified known active retrotransposons in both Arabidopsis and rice material where the epigenome is destabilized. When applying mobilome-seq to developmental stages in wild type rice, we identified PopRice as a highly active retrotransposon producing eccDNA forms in the wild type endosperm. The mobilome-seq strategy opens new routes for the characterization of a yet unexplored fraction of plant genomes.

  5. Sequencing the extrachromosomal circular mobilome reveals retrotransposon activity in plants

    OpenAIRE

    Lanciano, Sophie; Carpentier, M. C.; Llauro, C.; Jobet, E.; Robakowska-Hyzorek, D.; Lasserre, E.; Ghesquière, Alain; Panaud, O.; Mirouze, Marie

    2017-01-01

    Retrotransposons are mobile genetic elements abundant in plant and animal genomes. While efficiently silenced by the epigenetic machinery, they can be reactivated upon stress or during development. Their level of transcription not reflecting their transposition ability, it is thus difficult to evaluate their contribution to the active mobilome. Here we applied a simple methodology based on the high throughput sequencing of extrachromosomal circular DNA (eccDNA) forms of active retrotransposon...

  6. Active Tectonics Revealed by River Profiles along the Puqu Fault

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    Ping Lu

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The Puqu Fault is situated in Southern Tibet. It is influenced by the eastward extrusion of Northern Tibet and carries the clockwise rotation followed by the southward extrusion. Thus, the Puqu Fault is bounded by the principal dynamic zones and the tectonic evolution remains active alongside. This study intends to understand the tectonic activity in the Puqu Fault Region from the river profiles obtained from the remotely sensed satellite imagery. A medium resolution Digital Elevation Model (DEM, 20 m was generated from an Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER stereo pair of images and the stream network in this region was extracted from this DEM. The indices of slope and drainage area were subsequently calculated from this ASTER DEM. Based on the stream power law, the area-slope plots of the streams were delineated to derive the indices of channel concavity and steepness, which are closely related to tectonic activity. The results show the active tectonics varying significantly along the Puqu Fault, although the potential influence of glaciations may exist. These results are expected to be useful for a better understanding of tectonic evolution in Southeastern Tibet.

  7. Microfabricated microbial fuel cell arrays reveal electrochemically active microbes.

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    Huijie Hou

    Full Text Available Microbial fuel cells (MFCs are remarkable "green energy" devices that exploit microbes to generate electricity from organic compounds. MFC devices currently being used and studied do not generate sufficient power to support widespread and cost-effective applications. Hence, research has focused on strategies to enhance the power output of the MFC devices, including exploring more electrochemically active microbes to expand the few already known electricigen families. However, most of the MFC devices are not compatible with high throughput screening for finding microbes with higher electricity generation capabilities. Here, we describe the development of a microfabricated MFC array, a compact and user-friendly platform for the identification and characterization of electrochemically active microbes. The MFC array consists of 24 integrated anode and cathode chambers, which function as 24 independent miniature MFCs and support direct and parallel comparisons of microbial electrochemical activities. The electricity generation profiles of spatially distinct MFC chambers on the array loaded with Shewanella oneidensis MR-1 differed by less than 8%. A screen of environmental microbes using the array identified an isolate that was related to Shewanella putrefaciens IR-1 and Shewanella sp. MR-7, and displayed 2.3-fold higher power output than the S. oneidensis MR-1 reference strain. Therefore, the utility of the MFC array was demonstrated.

  8. Metatranscriptomics reveals overall active bacterial composition in caries lesions

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    Aurea Simón-Soro

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Identifying the microbial species in caries lesions is instrumental to determine the etiology of dental caries. However, a significant proportion of bacteria in carious lesions have not been cultured, and the use of molecular methods has been limited to DNA-based approaches, which detect both active and inactive or dead microorganisms. Objective: To identify the RNA-based, metabolically active bacterial composition of caries lesions at different stages of disease progression in order to provide a list of potential etiological agents of tooth decay. Design: Non-cavitated enamel caries lesions (n=15 and dentin caries lesions samples (n=12 were collected from 13 individuals. RNA was extracted and cDNA was constructed, which was used to amplify the 16S rRNA gene. The resulting 780 bp polymerase chain reaction products were pyrosequenced using Titanium-plus chemistry, and the sequences obtained were used to determine the bacterial composition. Results: A mean of 4,900 sequences of the 16S rRNA gene with an average read length of 661 bp was obtained per sample, giving a comprehensive view of the active bacterial communities in caries lesions. Estimates of bacterial diversity indicate that the microbiota of cavities is highly complex, each sample containing between 70 and 400 metabolically active species. The composition of these bacterial consortia varied among individuals and between caries lesions of the same individuals. In addition, enamel and dentin lesions had a different bacterial makeup. Lactobacilli were found almost exclusively in dentin cavities. Streptococci accounted for 40% of the total active community in enamel caries, and 20% in dentin caries. However, Streptococcus mutans represented only 0.02–0.73% of the total bacterial community. Conclusions: The data indicate that the etiology of dental caries is tissue dependent and that the disease has a clear polymicrobial origin. The low proportion of mutans streptococci

  9. Shared memories reveal shared structure in neural activity across individuals

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    Chen, J.; Leong, Y.C.; Honey, C.J.; Yong, C.H.; Norman, K.A.; Hasson, U.

    2016-01-01

    Our lives revolve around sharing experiences and memories with others. When different people recount the same events, how similar are their underlying neural representations? Participants viewed a fifty-minute movie, then verbally described the events during functional MRI, producing unguided detailed descriptions lasting up to forty minutes. As each person spoke, event-specific spatial patterns were reinstated in default-network, medial-temporal, and high-level visual areas. Individual event patterns were both highly discriminable from one another and similar between people, suggesting consistent spatial organization. In many high-order areas, patterns were more similar between people recalling the same event than between recall and perception, indicating systematic reshaping of percept into memory. These results reveal the existence of a common spatial organization for memories in high-level cortical areas, where encoded information is largely abstracted beyond sensory constraints; and that neural patterns during perception are altered systematically across people into shared memory representations for real-life events. PMID:27918531

  10. Functional imaging reveals movement preparatory activity in the vegetative state

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    Tristan A Bekinschtein

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The Vegetative State (VS is characterized by the absence of awareness of self or the environment and preserved autonomic functions. The diagnosis relies critically on the lack of consistent signs of purposeful behavior in response to external stimulation. Yet, given that patients with disorders of consciousness often exhibit fragmented movement patterns, voluntary actions may go unnoticed. Here we designed a simple motor paradigm that could potentially detect residual conscious awareness in VS patients with mild to severe brain damage by examining the neural correlates of motor preparation in response to verbal commands. Twenty-four patients who met the diagnostic criteria for VS were recruited for this study. Eleven of these patients showing preserved auditory evoked potentials underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to test for basic speech processing. Five of these patients, who showed word related activity, were included in a second fMRI study aimed at detecting functional changes in premotor cortex elicited by specific verbal instructions to move either their left or their right hand. Despite the lack of overt muscle activity, two patients out of five activated the dorsal premotor cortex contralateral to the instructed hand, consistent with movement preparation. Given that movement preparation in response to a motor command is a sign of purposeful behavior, our results are consistent with residual conscious awareness in these patients. We believe that the identification of positive results with fMRI using this simple task, may complement the clinical assessment by helping attain a more precise diagnosis in patients with disorders of consciousness.

  11. Activities on Facebook reveal the depressive state of users.

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    Park, Sungkyu; Lee, Sang Won; Kwak, Jinah; Cha, Meeyoung; Jeong, Bumseok

    2013-10-01

    As online social media have become prominent, much effort has been spent on identifying users with depressive symptoms in order to aim at early diagnosis, treatment, and even prevention by using various online social media. In this paper, we focused on Facebook to discern any correlations between the platform's features and users' depressive symptoms. This work may be helpful in trying to reach and detect large numbers of depressed individuals more easily. Our goal was to develop a Web application and identify depressive symptom-related features from users of Facebook, a popular social networking platform. 55 Facebook users (male=40, female=15, mean age 24.43, SD 3.90) were recruited through advertisement fliers distributed to students in a large university in Korea. Using EmotionDiary, the Facebook application we developed, we evaluated depressive symptoms using the Center for Epidemiological Studies-Depression (CES-D) scale. We also provided tips and facts about depression to participants and measured their responses using EmotionDiary. To identify the Facebook features related to depression, correlation analyses were performed between CES-D and participants' responses to tips and facts or Facebook social features. Last, we interviewed depressed participants (CES-D≥25) to assess their depressive symptoms by a psychiatrist. Facebook activities had predictive power in distinguishing depressed and nondepressed individuals. Participants' response to tips and facts, which can be explained by the number of app tips viewed and app points, had a positive correlation (P=.04 for both cases), whereas the number of friends and location tags had a negative correlation with the CES-D scale (P=.08 and P=.045 respectively). Furthermore, in finding group differences in Facebook social activities, app tips viewed and app points resulted in significant differences (P=.01 and P=.03 respectively) between probably depressed and nondepressed individuals. Our results using Emotion

  12. Neural activity reveals perceptual grouping in working memory.

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    Rabbitt, Laura R; Roberts, Daniel M; McDonald, Craig G; Peterson, Matthew S

    2017-03-01

    There is extensive evidence that the contralateral delay activity (CDA), a scalp recorded event-related brain potential, provides a reliable index of the number of objects held in visual working memory. Here we present evidence that the CDA not only indexes visual object working memory, but also the number of locations held in spatial working memory. In addition, we demonstrate that the CDA can be predictably modulated by the type of encoding strategy employed. When individual locations were held in working memory, the pattern of CDA modulation mimicked previous findings for visual object working memory. Specifically, CDA amplitude increased monotonically until working memory capacity was reached. However, when participants were instructed to group individual locations to form a constellation, the CDA was prolonged and reached an asymptote at two locations. This result provides neural evidence for the formation of a unitary representation of multiple spatial locations. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  13. Revealing School Counselors' Perspectives on Using Physical Activity and Consulting with Coaches

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    Hayden, Laura; Silva, Meghan Ray; Gould, Kaitlin

    2018-01-01

    This study reveals school counselors' perspectives on using physical activity and a consultative process with coaches to provide school-based support for youth. Emerging from this exploration are ways that school-based physical activity might be used to help students develop life skills and to remove barriers to systemic integration of…

  14. A Global Genomic Screening Strategy Reveals Diverse Activators of Constitutive Activated Receptor (CAR)

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    A comprehensive survey of conditions that activate CAR in the mouse liver has not been carried out but would be useful in understanding their impact on CAR-dependent liver tumor induction. A gene signature dependent on CAR activation was identified by comparing the transcript pr...

  15. Dual gene activation and knockout screen reveals directional dependencies in genetic networks. | Office of Cancer Genomics

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    Understanding the direction of information flow is essential for characterizing how genetic networks affect phenotypes. However, methods to find genetic interactions largely fail to reveal directional dependencies. We combine two orthogonal Cas9 proteins from Streptococcus pyogenes and Staphylococcus aureus to carry out a dual screen in which one gene is activated while a second gene is deleted in the same cell. We analyze the quantitative effects of activation and knockout to calculate genetic interaction and directionality scores for each gene pair.

  16. Transcriptional decomposition reveals active chromatin architectures and cell specific regulatory interactions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rennie, Sarah; Dalby, Maria; van Duin, Lucas

    2018-01-01

    Transcriptional regulation is tightly coupled with chromosomal positioning and three-dimensional chromatin architecture. However, it is unclear what proportion of transcriptional activity is reflecting such organisation, how much can be informed by RNA expression alone and how this impacts disease...... proportion of total levels and is highly informative of topological associating domain activities and organisation, revealing boundaries and chromatin compartments. Furthermore, expression data alone accurately predict individual enhancer-promoter interactions, drawing features from expression strength...... between transcription and chromatin architecture....

  17. Electron Tomography Reveals the Active Phase–Support Interaction in Sulfidic Hydroprocessing Catalysts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eijsbouts, Sonja; Li, Xuang; Juan-Alcaniz, Jana; van den Oetelaar, Leon C A; Bergwerff, Jaap; Loos, Joachim; Carlsson, Anna; Vogt, E.T.C.

    2017-01-01

    Conventional two-dimensional (2D) transmission electron microscopy of sulfidic hydroprocessing catalysts can be deceiving and give the impression that parts of the support are overloaded with active phase. High-angle annular dark field scanning transmission electron microscopy tomography reveals

  18. Sex differences in functional activation patterns revealed by increased emotion processing demands.

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    Hall, Geoffrey B C; Witelson, Sandra F; Szechtman, Henry; Nahmias, Claude

    2004-02-09

    Two [O(15)] PET studies assessed sex differences regional brain activation in the recognition of emotional stimuli. Study I revealed that the recognition of emotion in visual faces resulted in bilateral frontal activation in women, and unilateral right-sided activation in men. In study II, the complexity of the emotional face task was increased through tje addition of associated auditory emotional stimuli. Men again showed unilateral frontal activation, in this case to the left; whereas women did not show bilateral frontal activation, but showed greater limbic activity. These results suggest that when processing broader cross-modal emotional stimuli, men engage more in associative cognitive strategies while women draw more on primary emotional references.

  19. Hydrophilic Phage-Mimicking Membrane Active Antimicrobials Reveal Nanostructure-Dependent Activity and Selectivity.

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    Jiang, Yunjiang; Zheng, Wan; Kuang, Liangju; Ma, Hairong; Liang, Hongjun

    2017-09-08

    The prevalent wisdom on developing membrane active antimicrobials (MAAs) is to seek a delicate, yet unquantified, cationic-hydrophobic balance. Inspired by phages that use nanostructured protein devices to invade bacteria efficiently and selectively, we study here the antibiotic role of nanostructures by designing spherical and rod-like polymer molecular brushes (PMBs) that mimic the two basic structural motifs of bacteriophages. Three model PMBs with different well-defined geometries consisting of multiple, identical copies of densely packed poly(4-vinyl-N-methylpyridine iodide) branches are synthesized by controlled/"living" polymerization, reminiscent of the viral structural motifs comprised of multiple copies of protein subunits. We show that, while the individual linear-chain polymer branch that makes up the PMBs is hydrophilic and a weak antimicrobial, amphiphilicity is not a required antibiotic trait once nanostructures come into play. The nanostructured PMBs induce an unusual topological transition of bacterial but not mammalian membranes to form pores. The sizes and shapes of the nanostructures further help define the antibiotic activity and selectivity of the PMBs against different families of bacteria. This study highlights the importance of nanostructures in the design of MAAs with high activity, low toxicity, and target specificity.

  20. Correlation of neural activity with behavioral kinematics reveals distinct sensory encoding and evidence accumulation processes during active tactile sensing.

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    Delis, Ioannis; Dmochowski, Jacek P; Sajda, Paul; Wang, Qi

    2018-03-23

    Many real-world decisions rely on active sensing, a dynamic process for directing our sensors (e.g. eyes or fingers) across a stimulus to maximize information gain. Though ecologically pervasive, limited work has focused on identifying neural correlates of the active sensing process. In tactile perception, we often make decisions about an object/surface by actively exploring its shape/texture. Here we investigate the neural correlates of active tactile decision-making by simultaneously measuring electroencephalography (EEG) and finger kinematics while subjects interrogated a haptic surface to make perceptual judgments. Since sensorimotor behavior underlies decision formation in active sensing tasks, we hypothesized that the neural correlates of decision-related processes would be detectable by relating active sensing to neural activity. Novel brain-behavior correlation analysis revealed that three distinct EEG components, localizing to right-lateralized occipital cortex (LOC), middle frontal gyrus (MFG), and supplementary motor area (SMA), respectively, were coupled with active sensing as their activity significantly correlated with finger kinematics. To probe the functional role of these components, we fit their single-trial-couplings to decision-making performance using a hierarchical-drift-diffusion-model (HDDM), revealing that the LOC modulated the encoding of the tactile stimulus whereas the MFG predicted the rate of information integration towards a choice. Interestingly, the MFG disappeared from components uncovered from control subjects performing active sensing but not required to make perceptual decisions. By uncovering the neural correlates of distinct stimulus encoding and evidence accumulation processes, this study delineated, for the first time, the functional role of cortical areas in active tactile decision-making. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Targeted massively parallel sequencing of angiosarcomas reveals frequent activation of the mitogen activated protein kinase pathway

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    Murali, Rajmohan; Chandramohan, Raghu; Möller, Inga; Scholz, Simone L.; Berger, Michael; Huberman, Kety; Viale, Agnes; Pirun, Mono; Socci, Nicholas D.; Bouvier, Nancy; Bauer, Sebastian; Artl, Monika; Schilling, Bastian; Schimming, Tobias; Sucker, Antje; Schwindenhammer, Benjamin; Grabellus, Florian; Speicher, Michael R.; Schaller, Jörg; Hillen, Uwe; Schadendorf, Dirk; Mentzel, Thomas; Cheng, Donavan T.; Wiesner, Thomas; Griewank, Klaus G.

    2015-01-01

    Angiosarcomas are rare malignant mesenchymal tumors of endothelial differentiation. The clinical behavior is usually aggressive and the prognosis for patients with advanced disease is poor with no effective therapies. The genetic bases of these tumors have been partially revealed in recent studies reporting genetic alterations such as amplifications of MYC (primarily in radiation-associated angiosarcomas), inactivating mutations in PTPRB and R707Q hotspot mutations of PLCG1. Here, we performed a comprehensive genomic analysis of 34 angiosarcomas using a clinically-approved, hybridization-based targeted next-generation sequencing assay for 341 well-established oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes. Over half of the angiosarcomas (n = 18, 53%) harbored genetic alterations affecting the MAPK pathway, involving mutations in KRAS, HRAS, NRAS, BRAF, MAPK1 and NF1, or amplifications in MAPK1/CRKL, CRAF or BRAF. The most frequently detected genetic aberrations were mutations in TP53 in 12 tumors (35%) and losses of CDKN2A in 9 tumors (26%). MYC amplifications were generally mutually exclusive of TP53 alterations and CDKN2A loss and were identified in 8 tumors (24%), most of which (n = 7, 88%) arose post-irradiation. Previously reported mutations in PTPRB (n = 10, 29%) and one (3%) PLCG1 R707Q mutation were also identified. Our results demonstrate that angiosarcomas are a genetically heterogeneous group of tumors, harboring a wide range of genetic alterations. The high frequency of genetic events affecting the MAPK pathway suggests that targeted therapies inhibiting MAPK signaling may be promising therapeutic avenues in patients with advanced angiosarcomas. PMID:26440310

  2. Natural and Semisynthetic Analogues of Manadoperoxide B Reveal New Structural Requirements for Trypanocidal Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chianese, Giuseppina; Scala, Fernando; Calcinai, Barbara; Cerrano, Carlo; Dien, Henny A.; Kaiser, Marcel; Tasdemir, Deniz; Taglialatela-Scafati, Orazio

    2013-01-01

    Chemical analysis of the Indonesian sponge Plakortis cfr. lita afforded two new analogues of the potent trypanocidal agent manadoperoxide B (1), namely 12-isomanadoperoxide B (2) and manadoperoxidic acid B (3). These compounds were isolated along with a new short chain dicarboxylate monoester (4), bearing some interesting relationships with the polyketide endoperoxides found in this sponge. Some semi-synthetic analogues of manadoperoxide B (6–8) were prepared and evaluated for antitrypanosomal activity and cytotoxicity. These studies revealed crucial structure–activity relationships that should be taken into account in the design of optimized and simplified endoperoxyketal trypanocidal agents. PMID:23989650

  3. Natural and Semisynthetic Analogues of Manadoperoxide B Reveal New Structural Requirements for Trypanocidal Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orazio Taglialatela-Scafati

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Chemical analysis of the Indonesian sponge Plakortis cfr. lita afforded two new analogues of the potent trypanocidal agent manadoperoxide B (1, namely 12-isomanadoperoxide B (2 and manadoperoxidic acid B (3. These compounds were isolated along with a new short chain dicarboxylate monoester (4, bearing some interesting relationships with the polyketide endoperoxides found in this sponge. Some semi-synthetic analogues of manadoperoxide B (6–8 were prepared and evaluated for antitrypanosomal activity and cytotoxicity. These studies revealed crucial structure–activity relationships that should be taken into account in the design of optimized and simplified endoperoxyketal trypanocidal agents.

  4. Structure of the human protein kinase MPSK1 reveals an atypical activation loop architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eswaran, Jeyanthy; Bernad, Antonio; Ligos, Jose M; Guinea, Barbara; Debreczeni, Judit E; Sobott, Frank; Parker, Sirlester A; Najmanovich, Rafael; Turk, Benjamin E; Knapp, Stefan

    2008-01-01

    The activation segment of protein kinases is structurally highly conserved and central to regulation of kinase activation. Here we report an atypical activation segment architecture in human MPSK1 comprising a beta sheet and a large alpha-helical insertion. Sequence comparisons suggested that similar activation segments exist in all members of the MPSK1 family and in MAST kinases. The consequence of this nonclassical activation segment on substrate recognition was studied using peptide library screens that revealed a preferred substrate sequence of X-X-P/V/I-phi-H/Y-T*-N/G-X-X-X (phi is an aliphatic residue). In addition, we identified the GTPase DRG1 as an MPSK1 interaction partner and specific substrate. The interaction domain in DRG1 was mapped to the N terminus, leading to recruitment and phosphorylation at Thr100 within the GTPase domain. The presented data reveal an atypical kinase structural motif and suggest a role of MPSK1 regulating DRG1, a GTPase involved in regulation of cellular growth.

  5. Spatiotemporal dynamics of word retrieval in speech production revealed by cortical high-frequency band activity.

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    Riès, Stephanie K; Dhillon, Rummit K; Clarke, Alex; King-Stephens, David; Laxer, Kenneth D; Weber, Peter B; Kuperman, Rachel A; Auguste, Kurtis I; Brunner, Peter; Schalk, Gerwin; Lin, Jack J; Parvizi, Josef; Crone, Nathan E; Dronkers, Nina F; Knight, Robert T

    2017-06-06

    Word retrieval is core to language production and relies on complementary processes: the rapid activation of lexical and conceptual representations and word selection, which chooses the correct word among semantically related competitors. Lexical and conceptual activation is measured by semantic priming. In contrast, word selection is indexed by semantic interference and is hampered in semantically homogeneous (HOM) contexts. We examined the spatiotemporal dynamics of these complementary processes in a picture naming task with blocks of semantically heterogeneous (HET) or HOM stimuli. We used electrocorticography data obtained from frontal and temporal cortices, permitting detailed spatiotemporal analysis of word retrieval processes. A semantic interference effect was observed with naming latencies longer in HOM versus HET blocks. Cortical response strength as indexed by high-frequency band (HFB) activity (70-150 Hz) amplitude revealed effects linked to lexical-semantic activation and word selection observed in widespread regions of the cortical mantle. Depending on the subsecond timing and cortical region, HFB indexed semantic interference (i.e., more activity in HOM than HET blocks) or semantic priming effects (i.e., more activity in HET than HOM blocks). These effects overlapped in time and space in the left posterior inferior temporal gyrus and the left prefrontal cortex. The data do not support a modular view of word retrieval in speech production but rather support substantial overlap of lexical-semantic activation and word selection mechanisms in the brain.

  6. Whole-brain activity maps reveal stereotyped, distributed networks for visuomotor behavior.

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    Portugues, Ruben; Feierstein, Claudia E; Engert, Florian; Orger, Michael B

    2014-03-19

    Most behaviors, even simple innate reflexes, are mediated by circuits of neurons spanning areas throughout the brain. However, in most cases, the distribution and dynamics of firing patterns of these neurons during behavior are not known. We imaged activity, with cellular resolution, throughout the whole brains of zebrafish performing the optokinetic response. We found a sparse, broadly distributed network that has an elaborate but ordered pattern, with a bilaterally symmetrical organization. Activity patterns fell into distinct clusters reflecting sensory and motor processing. By correlating neuronal responses with an array of sensory and motor variables, we find that the network can be clearly divided into distinct functional modules. Comparing aligned data from multiple fish, we find that the spatiotemporal activity dynamics and functional organization are highly stereotyped across individuals. These experiments systematically reveal the functional architecture of neural circuits underlying a sensorimotor behavior in a vertebrate brain. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Inter-species activity correlations reveal functional correspondences between monkey and human brain areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mantini, Dante; Hasson, Uri; Betti, Viviana; Perrucci, Mauro G.; Romani, Gian Luca; Corbetta, Maurizio; Orban, Guy A.; Vanduffel, Wim

    2012-01-01

    Evolution-driven functional changes in the primate brain are typically assessed by aligning monkey and human activation maps using cortical surface expansion models. These models use putative homologous areas as registration landmarks, assuming they are functionally correspondent. In cases where functional changes have occurred in an area, this assumption prohibits to reveal whether other areas may have assumed lost functions. Here we describe a method to examine functional correspondences across species. Without making spatial assumptions, we assess similarities in sensory-driven functional magnetic resonance imaging responses between monkey (Macaca mulatta) and human brain areas by means of temporal correlation. Using natural vision data, we reveal regions for which functional processing has shifted to topologically divergent locations during evolution. We conclude that substantial evolution-driven functional reorganizations have occurred, not always consistent with cortical expansion processes. This novel framework for evaluating changes in functional architecture is crucial to building more accurate evolutionary models. PMID:22306809

  8. Purification of reversibly oxidized proteins (PROP reveals a redox switch controlling p38 MAP kinase activity.

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    Dennis J Templeton

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Oxidation of cysteine residues of proteins is emerging as an important means of regulation of signal transduction, particularly of protein kinase function. Tools to detect and quantify cysteine oxidation of proteins have been a limiting factor in understanding the role of cysteine oxidation in signal transduction. As an example, the p38 MAP kinase is activated by several stress-related stimuli that are often accompanied by in vitro generation of hydrogen peroxide. We noted that hydrogen peroxide inhibited p38 activity despite paradoxically increasing the activating phosphorylation of p38. To address the possibility that cysteine oxidation may provide a negative regulatory effect on p38 activity, we developed a biochemical assay to detect reversible cysteine oxidation in intact cells. This procedure, PROP, demonstrated in vivo oxidation of p38 in response to hydrogen peroxide and also to the natural inflammatory lipid prostaglandin J2. Mutagenesis of the potential target cysteines showed that oxidation occurred preferentially on residues near the surface of the p38 molecule. Cysteine oxidation thus controls a functional redox switch regulating the intensity or duration of p38 activity that would not be revealed by immunodetection of phosphoprotein commonly interpreted as reflective of p38 activity.

  9. Common brain regions underlying different arithmetic operations as revealed by conjunct fMRI-BOLD activation.

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    Fehr, Thorsten; Code, Chris; Herrmann, Manfred

    2007-10-03

    The issue of how and where arithmetic operations are represented in the brain has been addressed in numerous studies. Lesion studies suggest that a network of different brain areas are involved in mental calculation. Neuroimaging studies have reported inferior parietal and lateral frontal activations during mental arithmetic using tasks of different complexities and using different operators (addition, subtraction, etc.). Indeed, it has been difficult to compare brain activation across studies because of the variety of different operators and different presentation modalities used. The present experiment examined fMRI-BOLD activity in participants during calculation tasks entailing different arithmetic operations -- addition, subtraction, multiplication and division -- of different complexities. Functional imaging data revealed a common activation pattern comprising right precuneus, left and right middle and superior frontal regions during all arithmetic operations. All other regional activations were operation specific and distributed in prominently frontal, parietal and central regions when contrasting complex and simple calculation tasks. The present results largely confirm former studies suggesting that activation patterns due to mental arithmetic appear to reflect a basic anatomical substrate of working memory, numerical knowledge and processing based on finger counting, and derived from a network originally related to finger movement. We emphasize that in mental arithmetic research different arithmetic operations should always be examined and discussed independently of each other in order to avoid invalid generalizations on arithmetics and involved brain areas.

  10. Phenotype specific analyses reveal distinct regulatory mechanism for chronically activated p53.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristina Kirschner

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The downstream functions of the DNA binding tumor suppressor p53 vary depending on the cellular context, and persistent p53 activation has recently been implicated in tumor suppression and senescence. However, genome-wide information about p53-target gene regulation has been derived mostly from acute genotoxic conditions. Using ChIP-seq and expression data, we have found distinct p53 binding profiles between acutely activated (through DNA damage and chronically activated (in senescent or pro-apoptotic conditions p53. Compared to the classical 'acute' p53 binding profile, 'chronic' p53 peaks were closely associated with CpG-islands. Furthermore, the chronic CpG-island binding of p53 conferred distinct expression patterns between senescent and pro-apoptotic conditions. Using the p53 targets seen in the chronic conditions together with external high-throughput datasets, we have built p53 networks that revealed extensive self-regulatory 'p53 hubs' where p53 and many p53 targets can physically interact with each other. Integrating these results with public clinical datasets identified the cancer-associated lipogenic enzyme, SCD, which we found to be directly repressed by p53 through the CpG-island promoter, providing a mechanistic link between p53 and the 'lipogenic phenotype', a hallmark of cancer. Our data reveal distinct phenotype associations of chronic p53 targets that underlie specific gene regulatory mechanisms.

  11. Identity of active methanotrophs in landfill cover soil as revealed by DNA-stable isotope probing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cébron, Aurélie; Bodrossy, Levente; Chen, Yin; Singer, Andrew C; Thompson, Ian P; Prosser, James I; Murrell, J Colin

    2007-10-01

    A considerable amount of methane produced during decomposition of landfill waste can be oxidized in landfill cover soil by methane-oxidizing bacteria (methanotrophs) thus reducing greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere. The identity of active methanotrophs in Roscommon landfill cover soil, a slightly acidic peat soil, was assessed by DNA-stable isotope probing (SIP). Landfill cover soil slurries were incubated with (13)C-labelled methane and under either nutrient-rich nitrate mineral salt medium or water. The identity of active methanotrophs was revealed by analysis of (13)C-labelled DNA fractions. The diversity of functional genes (pmoA and mmoX) and 16S rRNA genes was analyzed using clone libraries, microarrays and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis. 16S rRNA gene analysis revealed that the cover soil was mainly dominated by Type II methanotrophs closely related to the genera Methylocella and Methylocapsa and to Methylocystis species. These results were supported by analysis of mmoX genes in (13)C-DNA. Analysis of pmoA gene diversity indicated that a significant proportion of active bacteria were also closely related to the Type I methanotrophs, Methylobacter and Methylomonas species. Environmental conditions in the slightly acidic peat soil from Roscommon landfill cover allow establishment of both Type I and Type II methanotrophs.

  12. Active sensing associated with spatial learning reveals memory-based attention in an electric fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jun, James J; Longtin, André; Maler, Leonard

    2016-05-01

    Active sensing behaviors reveal what an animal is attending to and how it changes with learning. Gymnotus sp, a gymnotiform weakly electric fish, generates an electric organ discharge (EOD) as discrete pulses to actively sense its surroundings. We monitored freely behaving gymnotid fish in a large dark "maze" and extracted their trajectories and EOD pulse pattern and rate while they learned to find food with electrically detectable landmarks as cues. After training, they more rapidly found food using shorter, more stereotyped trajectories and spent more time near the food location. We observed three forms of active sensing: sustained high EOD rates per unit distance (sampling density), transient large increases in EOD rate (E-scans) and stereotyped scanning movements (B-scans) were initially strong at landmarks and food, but, after learning, intensified only at the food location. During probe (no food) trials, after learning, the fish's search area and intense active sampling was still centered on the missing food location, but now also increased near landmarks. We hypothesize that active sensing is a behavioral manifestation of attention and essential for spatial learning; the fish use spatial memory of landmarks and path integration to reach the expected food location and confine their attention to this region. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  13. Peptidomic analysis reveals proteolytic activity of kefir microorganisms on bovine milk proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dallas, David C.; Citerne, Florine; Tian, Tian; Silva, Vitor L. M.; Kalanetra, Karen M.; Frese, Steven A.; Robinson, Randall C.; Mills, David A.; Barile, Daniela

    2015-01-01

    Scope The microorganisms that make up kefir grains are well known for lactose fermentation, but the extent to which they hydrolyze and consume milk proteins remains poorly understood. Peptidomics technologies were used to examine the proteolytic activity of kefir grains on bovine milk proteins. Methods and results Gel electrophoresis revealed substantial digestion of milk proteins by kefir grains, with mass spectrometric analysis showing the release of 609 protein fragments and alteration of the abundance of >1,500 peptides that derived from 27 milk proteins. Kefir contained 25 peptides identified from the literature as having biological activity, including those with antihypertensive, antimicrobial, immunomodulatory, opioid and anti-oxidative functions. 16S rRNA and shotgun metagenomic sequencing identified the principle taxa in the culture as Lactobacillus species. Conclusion The model kefir sample contained thousands of protein fragments released in part by kefir microorganisms and in part by native milk proteases. PMID:26616950

  14. Peptidomic analysis reveals proteolytic activity of kefir microorganisms on bovine milk proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dallas, David C; Citerne, Florine; Tian, Tian; Silva, Vitor L M; Kalanetra, Karen M; Frese, Steven A; Robinson, Randall C; Mills, David A; Barile, Daniela

    2016-04-15

    The microorganisms that make up kefir grains are well known for lactose fermentation, but the extent to which they hydrolyze and consume milk proteins remains poorly understood. Peptidomics technologies were used to examine the proteolytic activity of kefir grains on bovine milk proteins. Gel electrophoresis revealed substantial digestion of milk proteins by kefir grains, with mass spectrometric analysis showing the release of 609 protein fragments and alteration of the abundance of >1500 peptides that derived from 27 milk proteins. Kefir contained 25 peptides identified from the literature as having biological activity, including those with antihypertensive, antimicrobial, immunomodulatory, opioid and anti-oxidative functions. 16S rRNA and shotgun metagenomic sequencing identified the principle taxa in the culture as Lactobacillus species. The model kefir sample contained thousands of protein fragments released in part by kefir microorganisms and in part by native milk proteases. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Platelet proteome reveals novel pathways of platelet activation and platelet-mediated immunoregulation in dengue.

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    Monique Ramos de Oliveira Trugilho

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Dengue is the most prevalent human arbovirus disease worldwide. Dengue virus (DENV infection causes syndromes varying from self-limiting febrile illness to severe dengue. Although dengue pathophysiology is not completely understood, it is widely accepted that increased inflammation plays important roles in dengue pathogenesis. Platelets are blood cells classically known as effectors of hemostasis which have been increasingly recognized to have major immune and inflammatory activities. Nevertheless, the phenotype and effector functions of platelets in dengue pathogenesis are not completely understood. Here we used quantitative proteomics to investigate the protein content of platelets in clinical samples from patients with dengue compared to platelets from healthy donors. Our assays revealed a set of 252 differentially abundant proteins. In silico analyses associated these proteins with key molecular events including platelet activation and inflammatory responses, and with events not previously attributed to platelets during dengue infection including antigen processing and presentation, proteasome activity, and expression of histones. From these results, we conducted functional assays using samples from a larger cohort of patients and demonstrated evidence for platelet activation indicated by P-selectin (CD62P translocation and secretion of granule-stored chemokines by platelets. In addition, we found evidence that DENV infection triggers HLA class I synthesis and surface expression by a mechanism depending on functional proteasome activity. Furthermore, we demonstrate that cell-free histone H2A released during dengue infection binds to platelets, increasing platelet activation. These findings are consistent with functional importance of HLA class I, proteasome subunits, and histones that we found exclusively in proteome analysis of platelets in samples from dengue patients. Our study provides the first in-depth characterization of the platelet

  16. SNOW AVALANCHE ACTIVITY IN PARÂNG SKI AREA REVEALED BY TREE-RINGS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. MESEȘAN

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Snow Avalanche Activity in Parâng Ski Area Revealed by Tree-Rings. Snow avalanches hold favorable conditions to manifest in Parâng Mountains but only one event is historically known, without destructive impact upon infrastructure or fatalities and this region wasn’t yet the object of avalanche research. The existing ski infrastructure of Parâng resort located in the west of Parâng Mountains is proposed to be extended in the steep slopes of subalpine area. Field evidence pinpoints that these steep slopes were affected by snow avalanches in the past. In this study we analyzed 11 stem discs and 31 increment cores extracted from 22 spruces (Picea abies (L. Karst impacted by avalanches, in order to obtain more information about past avalanches activity. Using the dendrogeomorphological approach we found 13 avalanche events that occurred along Scărița avalanche path, since 1935 until 2012, nine of them produced in the last 20 years. The tree-rings data inferred an intense snow avalanche activity along this avalanche path. This study not only calls for more research in the study area but also proves that snow avalanches could constitute an important restrictive factor for the tourism infrastructure and related activities in the area. It must be taken into consideration by the future extension of tourism infrastructure. Keywords: snow avalanche, Parâng Mountains, dendrogeomorphology, ski area.

  17. Altered spontaneous brain activity in adolescent boys with pure conduct disorder revealed by regional homogeneity analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Qiong; Zhang, Xiaocui; Dong, Daifeng; Wang, Xiang; Yao, Shuqiao

    2017-07-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have revealed abnormal neural activity in several brain regions of adolescents with conduct disorder (CD) performing various tasks. However, little is known about the spontaneous neural activity in people with CD in a resting state. The aims of this study were to investigate CD-associated regional activity abnormalities and to explore the relationship between behavioral impulsivity and regional activity abnormalities. Resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI) scans were administered to 28 adolescents with CD and 28 age-, gender-, and IQ-matched healthy controls (HCs). The rs-fMRI data were subjected to regional homogeneity (ReHo) analysis. ReHo can demonstrate the temporal synchrony of regional blood oxygen level-dependent signals and reflect the coordination of local neuronal activity facilitating similar goals or representations. Compared to HCs, the CD group showed increased ReHo bilaterally in the insula as well as decreased ReHo in the right inferior parietal lobule, right middle temporal gyrus and right fusiform gyrus, left anterior cerebellum anterior, and right posterior cerebellum. In the CD group, mean ReHo values in the left and the right insula correlated positively with Barratt Impulsivity Scale (BIS) total scores. The results suggest that CD is associated with abnormal intrinsic brain activity, mainly in the cerebellum and temporal-parietal-limbic cortices, regions that are related to emotional and cognitive processing. BIS scores in adolescents with CD may reflect severity of abnormal neuronal synchronization in the insula.

  18. Lost for emotion words: What motor and limbic brain activity reveals about autism and semantic theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moseley, Rachel L.; Shtyrov, Yury; Mohr, Bettina; Lombardo, Michael V.; Baron-Cohen, Simon; Pulvermüller, Friedemann

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum conditions (ASC) are characterised by deficits in understanding and expressing emotions and are frequently accompanied by alexithymia, a difficulty in understanding and expressing emotion words. Words are differentially represented in the brain according to their semantic category and these difficulties in ASC predict reduced activation to emotion-related words in limbic structures crucial for affective processing. Semantic theories view ‘emotion actions’ as critical for learning the semantic relationship between a word and the emotion it describes, such that emotion words typically activate the cortical motor systems involved in expressing emotion actions such as facial expressions. As ASC are also characterised by motor deficits and atypical brain structure and function in these regions, motor structures would also be expected to show reduced activation during emotion-semantic processing. Here we used event-related fMRI to compare passive processing of emotion words in comparison to abstract verbs and animal names in typically-developing controls and individuals with ASC. Relatively reduced brain activation in ASC for emotion words, but not matched control words, was found in motor areas and cingulate cortex specifically. The degree of activation evoked by emotion words in the motor system was also associated with the extent of autistic traits as revealed by the Autism Spectrum Quotient. We suggest that hypoactivation of motor and limbic regions for emotion word processing may underlie difficulties in processing emotional language in ASC. The role that sensorimotor systems and their connections might play in the affective and social-communication difficulties in ASC is discussed. PMID:25278250

  19. A chimeric prokaryotic pentameric ligand–gated channel reveals distinct pathways of activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmandt, Nicolaus; Velisetty, Phanindra; Chalamalasetti, Sreevatsa V.; Stein, Richard A.; Bonner, Ross; Talley, Lauren; Parker, Mark D.; Mchaourab, Hassane S.; Yee, Vivien C.; Lodowski, David T.

    2015-01-01

    Recent high resolution structures of several pentameric ligand–gated ion channels have provided unprecedented details of their molecular architecture. However, the conformational dynamics and structural rearrangements that underlie gating and allosteric modulation remain poorly understood. We used a combination of electrophysiology, double electron–electron resonance (DEER) spectroscopy, and x-ray crystallography to investigate activation mechanisms in a novel functional chimera with the extracellular domain (ECD) of amine-gated Erwinia chrysanthemi ligand–gated ion channel, which is activated by primary amines, and the transmembrane domain of Gloeobacter violaceus ligand–gated ion channel, which is activated by protons. We found that the chimera was independently gated by primary amines and by protons. The crystal structure of the chimera in its resting state, at pH 7.0 and in the absence of primary amines, revealed a closed-pore conformation and an ECD that is twisted with respect to the transmembrane region. Amine- and pH-induced conformational changes measured by DEER spectroscopy showed that the chimera exhibits a dual mode of gating that preserves the distinct conformational changes of the parent channels. Collectively, our findings shed light on both conserved and divergent features of gating mechanisms in this class of channels, and will facilitate the design of better allosteric modulators. PMID:26415570

  20. Live imaging of cysteine-cathepsin activity reveals dynamics of focal inflammation, angiogenesis, and polyp growth.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elias Gounaris

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available It has been estimated that up to 30% of detectable polyps in patients regress spontaneously. One major challenge in the evaluation of effective therapy of cancer is the readout for tumor regression and favorable biological response to therapy. Inducible near infra-red (NIR fluorescent probes were utilized to visualize intestinal polyps of mice hemizygous for a novel truncation of the Adenomatous Polyposis coli (APC gene. Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopy in live mice allowed visualization of cathepsin activity in richly vascularized benign dysplastic lesions. Using biotinylated suicide inhibitors we quantified increased activities of the Cathepsin B & Z in the polyps. More than (3/4 of the probe signal was localized in CD11b(+Gr1(+ myeloid derived suppressor cells (MDSC and CD11b(+F4/80(+ macrophages infiltrating the lesions. Polyposis was attenuated through genetic ablation of cathepsin B, and suppressed by neutralization of TNFalpha in mice. In both cases, diminished probe signal was accounted for by loss of MDSC. Thus, in vivo NIR imaging of focal cathepsin activity reveals inflammatory reactions etiologically linked with cancer progression and is a suitable approach for monitoring response to therapy.

  1. Activity in human visual and parietal cortex reveals object-based attention in working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Benjamin; Kaiser, Jochen; Rahm, Benjamin; Bledowski, Christoph

    2015-02-25

    Visual attention enables observers to select behaviorally relevant information based on spatial locations, features, or objects. Attentional selection is not limited to physically present visual information, but can also operate on internal representations maintained in working memory (WM) in service of higher-order cognition. However, only little is known about whether attention to WM contents follows the same principles as attention to sensory stimuli. To address this question, we investigated in humans whether the typically observed effects of object-based attention in perception are also evident for object-based attentional selection of internal object representations in WM. In full accordance with effects in visual perception, the key behavioral and neuronal characteristics of object-based attention were observed in WM. Specifically, we found that reaction times were shorter when shifting attention to memory positions located on the currently attended object compared with equidistant positions on a different object. Furthermore, functional magnetic resonance imaging and multivariate pattern analysis of visuotopic activity in visual (areas V1-V4) and parietal cortex revealed that directing attention to one position of an object held in WM also enhanced brain activation for other positions on the same object, suggesting that attentional selection in WM activates the entire object. This study demonstrated that all characteristic features of object-based attention are present in WM and thus follows the same principles as in perception. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/353360-10$15.00/0.

  2. Community Lenses Revealing the Role of Sociocultural Environment on Physical Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belon, Ana Paula; Nieuwendyk, Laura M.; Vallianatos, Helen; Nykiforuk, Candace I. J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To identify perceptions of how sociocultural environment enabled and hindered physical activity (PA) participation. Design Community-based participatory research. Setting Two semirural and two urban communities located in Alberta, Canada. Participants Thirty-five people (74.3% females, 71.4% aged 25–64 years) across the four communities. Method PhotoVoice activities occurred over 3 months during the spring of 2009. Participants were asked to document perceived environmental attributes that might foster or inhibit PA in their community. Photographs and narratives were shared in one-on-one interviews. Line-by-line coding of the transcripts was independently conducted by two researchers using an inductive approach. Codes were arranged into themes and subthemes, which were then organized into the Analysis Grid for Environments Linked to Obesity (ANGELO) framework. Results Six main themes (accompanied by subthemes) emerged: sociocultural aesthetics, safety, social involvement, PA motivation, cultural ideas of recreation, and car culture. Representative quotes and photographs illustrate enablers and obstacles identified by participants. Conclusion This PhotoVoice study revealed how aspects of participants’ sociocultural environments shaped their decisions to be physically active. Providing more PA resources is only one step in the promotion of supportive environments. Strategies should also account for the beautification and maintenance of communities, increasing feelings of safety, enhancement of social support among community members, popularization of PA, and mitigating car culture, among others. PMID:25973966

  3. Stepwise multiphoton activation fluorescence reveals a new method of melanin detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Zhenhua; Kerimo, Josef; Mega, Yair; DiMarzio, Charles A.

    2013-06-01

    The stepwise multiphoton activated fluorescence (SMPAF) of melanin, activated by a continuous-wave mode near infrared (NIR) laser, reveals a broad spectrum extending from the visible spectra to the NIR and has potential application for a low-cost, reliable method of detecting melanin. SMPAF images of melanin in mouse hair and skin are compared with conventional multiphoton fluorescence microscopy and confocal reflectance microscopy (CRM). By combining CRM with SMPAF, we can locate melanin reliably. However, we have the added benefit of eliminating background interference from other components inside mouse hair and skin. The melanin SMPAF signal from the mouse hair is a mixture of a two-photon process and a third-order process. The melanin SMPAF emission spectrum is activated by a 1505.9-nm laser light, and the resulting spectrum has a peak at 960 nm. The discovery of the emission peak may lead to a more energy-efficient method of background-free melanin detection with less photo-bleaching.

  4. Community Lenses Revealing the Role of Sociocultural Environment on Physical Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belon, Ana Paula; Nieuwendyk, Laura M; Vallianatos, Helen; Nykiforuk, Candace I J

    2016-01-01

    To identify perceptions of how sociocultural environment enabled and hindered physical activity (PA) participation. Community-based participatory research. Two semirural and two urban communities located in Alberta, Canada. Thirty-five people (74.3% females, 71.4% aged 25-64 years) across the four communities. PhotoVoice activities occurred over 3 months during the spring of 2009. Participants were asked to document perceived environmental attributes that might foster or inhibit PA in their community. Photographs and narratives were shared in one-on-one interviews. Line-by-line coding of the transcripts was independently conducted by two researchers using an inductive approach. Codes were arranged into themes and subthemes, which were then organized into the Analysis Grid for Environments Linked to Obesity (ANGELO) framework. Six main themes (accompanied by subthemes) emerged: sociocultural aesthetics, safety, social involvement, PA motivation, cultural ideas of recreation, and car culture. Representative quotes and photographs illustrate enablers and obstacles identified by participants. This PhotoVoice study revealed how aspects of participants' sociocultural environments shaped their decisions to be physically active. Providing more PA resources is only one step in the promotion of supportive environments. Strategies should also account for the beautification and maintenance of communities, increasing feelings of safety, enhancement of social support among community members, popularization of PA, and mitigating car culture, among others.

  5. Water diffusion closely reveals neural activity status in rat brain loci affected by anesthesia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshifumi Abe

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Diffusion functional MRI (DfMRI reveals neuronal activation even when neurovascular coupling is abolished, contrary to blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD functional MRI (fMRI. Here, we show that the water apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC derived from DfMRI increased in specific rat brain regions under anesthetic conditions, reflecting the decreased neuronal activity observed with local field potentials (LFPs, especially in regions involved in wakefulness. In contrast, BOLD signals showed nonspecific changes, reflecting systemic effects of the anesthesia on overall brain hemodynamics status. Electrical stimulation of the central medial thalamus nucleus (CM exhibiting this anesthesia-induced ADC increase led the animals to transiently wake up. Infusion in the CM of furosemide, a specific neuronal swelling blocker, led the ADC to increase further locally, although LFP activity remained unchanged, and increased the current threshold awakening the animals under CM electrical stimulation. Oppositely, induction of cell swelling in the CM through infusion of a hypotonic solution (-80 milliosmole [mOsm] artificial cerebrospinal fluid [aCSF] led to a local ADC decrease and a lower current threshold to wake up the animals. Strikingly, the local ADC changes produced by blocking or enhancing cell swelling in the CM were also mirrored remotely in areas functionally connected to the CM, such as the cingulate and somatosensory cortex. Together, those results strongly suggest that neuronal swelling is a significant mechanism underlying DfMRI.

  6. Angiogenesis interactome and time course microarray data reveal the distinct activation patterns in endothelial cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang-Hui Chu

    Full Text Available Angiogenesis involves stimulation of endothelial cells (EC by various cytokines and growth factors, but the signaling mechanisms are not completely understood. Combining dynamic gene expression time-course data for stimulated EC with protein-protein interactions associated with angiogenesis (the "angiome" could reveal how different stimuli result in different patterns of network activation and could implicate signaling intermediates as points for control or intervention. We constructed the protein-protein interaction networks of positive and negative regulation of angiogenesis comprising 367 and 245 proteins, respectively. We used five published gene expression datasets derived from in vitro assays using different types of blood endothelial cells stimulated by VEGFA (vascular endothelial growth factor A. We used the Short Time-series Expression Miner (STEM to identify significant temporal gene expression profiles. The statistically significant patterns between 2D fibronectin and 3D type I collagen substrates for telomerase-immortalized EC (TIME show that different substrates could influence the temporal gene activation patterns in the same cell line. We investigated the different activation patterns among 18 transmembrane tyrosine kinase receptors, and experimentally measured the protein level of the tyrosine-kinase receptors VEGFR1, VEGFR2 and VEGFR3 in human umbilical vein EC (HUVEC and human microvascular EC (MEC. The results show that VEGFR1-VEGFR2 levels are more closely coupled than VEGFR1-VEGFR3 or VEGFR2-VEGFR3 in HUVEC and MEC. This computational methodology can be extended to investigate other molecules or biological processes such as cell cycle.

  7. Core microbial functional activities in ocean environments revealed by global metagenomic profiling analyses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ari J S Ferreira

    Full Text Available Metagenomics-based functional profiling analysis is an effective means of gaining deeper insight into the composition of marine microbial populations and developing a better understanding of the interplay between the functional genome content of microbial communities and abiotic factors. Here we present a comprehensive analysis of 24 datasets covering surface and depth-related environments at 11 sites around the world's oceans. The complete datasets comprises approximately 12 million sequences, totaling 5,358 Mb. Based on profiling patterns of Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs of proteins, a core set of reference photic and aphotic depth-related COGs, and a collection of COGs that are associated with extreme oxygen limitation were defined. Their inferred functions were utilized as indicators to characterize the distribution of light- and oxygen-related biological activities in marine environments. The results reveal that, while light level in the water column is a major determinant of phenotypic adaptation in marine microorganisms, oxygen concentration in the aphotic zone has a significant impact only in extremely hypoxic waters. Phylogenetic profiling of the reference photic/aphotic gene sets revealed a greater variety of source organisms in the aphotic zone, although the majority of individual photic and aphotic depth-related COGs are assigned to the same taxa across the different sites. This increase in phylogenetic and functional diversity of the core aphotic related COGs most probably reflects selection for the utilization of a broad range of alternate energy sources in the absence of light.

  8. Core microbial functional activities in ocean environments revealed by global metagenomic profiling analyses.

    KAUST Repository

    Ferreira, Ari J S

    2014-06-12

    Metagenomics-based functional profiling analysis is an effective means of gaining deeper insight into the composition of marine microbial populations and developing a better understanding of the interplay between the functional genome content of microbial communities and abiotic factors. Here we present a comprehensive analysis of 24 datasets covering surface and depth-related environments at 11 sites around the world\\'s oceans. The complete datasets comprises approximately 12 million sequences, totaling 5,358 Mb. Based on profiling patterns of Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs) of proteins, a core set of reference photic and aphotic depth-related COGs, and a collection of COGs that are associated with extreme oxygen limitation were defined. Their inferred functions were utilized as indicators to characterize the distribution of light- and oxygen-related biological activities in marine environments. The results reveal that, while light level in the water column is a major determinant of phenotypic adaptation in marine microorganisms, oxygen concentration in the aphotic zone has a significant impact only in extremely hypoxic waters. Phylogenetic profiling of the reference photic/aphotic gene sets revealed a greater variety of source organisms in the aphotic zone, although the majority of individual photic and aphotic depth-related COGs are assigned to the same taxa across the different sites. This increase in phylogenetic and functional diversity of the core aphotic related COGs most probably reflects selection for the utilization of a broad range of alternate energy sources in the absence of light.

  9. Core microbial functional activities in ocean environments revealed by global metagenomic profiling analyses.

    KAUST Repository

    Ferreira, Ari J S; Siam, Rania; Setubal, Joã o C; Moustafa, Ahmed; Sayed, Ahmed; Chambergo, Felipe S; Dawe, Adam S; Ghazy, Mohamed A; Sharaf, Hazem; Ouf, Amged; Alam, Intikhab; Abdel-Haleem, Alyaa M; Lehvä slaiho, Heikki; Ramadan, Eman; Antunes, André ; Stingl, Ulrich; Archer, John A.C.; Jankovic, Boris R; Sogin, Mitchell; Bajic, Vladimir B.; El-Dorry, Hamza

    2014-01-01

    Metagenomics-based functional profiling analysis is an effective means of gaining deeper insight into the composition of marine microbial populations and developing a better understanding of the interplay between the functional genome content of microbial communities and abiotic factors. Here we present a comprehensive analysis of 24 datasets covering surface and depth-related environments at 11 sites around the world's oceans. The complete datasets comprises approximately 12 million sequences, totaling 5,358 Mb. Based on profiling patterns of Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs) of proteins, a core set of reference photic and aphotic depth-related COGs, and a collection of COGs that are associated with extreme oxygen limitation were defined. Their inferred functions were utilized as indicators to characterize the distribution of light- and oxygen-related biological activities in marine environments. The results reveal that, while light level in the water column is a major determinant of phenotypic adaptation in marine microorganisms, oxygen concentration in the aphotic zone has a significant impact only in extremely hypoxic waters. Phylogenetic profiling of the reference photic/aphotic gene sets revealed a greater variety of source organisms in the aphotic zone, although the majority of individual photic and aphotic depth-related COGs are assigned to the same taxa across the different sites. This increase in phylogenetic and functional diversity of the core aphotic related COGs most probably reflects selection for the utilization of a broad range of alternate energy sources in the absence of light.

  10. Zebrafish Embryonic Lipidomic Analysis Reveals that the Yolk Cell Is Metabolically Active in Processing Lipid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Fraher

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The role of lipids in providing energy and structural cellular components during vertebrate development is poorly understood. To elucidate these roles further, we visualized lipid deposition and examined expression of key lipid-regulating genes during zebrafish embryogenesis. We also conducted a semiquantitative analysis of lipidomic composition using liquid chromatography (LC-mass spectrometry. Finally, we analyzed processing of boron-dipyrromethene (BODIPY lipid analogs injected into the yolk using thin layer chromatography. Our data reveal that the most abundant lipids in the embryo are cholesterol, phosphatidylcholine, and triglyceride. Moreover, we demonstrate that lipids are processed within the yolk prior to mobilization to the embryonic body. Our data identify a metabolically active yolk and body resulting in a dynamic lipid composition. This provides a foundation for studying lipid biology during normal or pharmacologically compromised embryogenesis.

  11. Distribution patterns of firearm discharge residues as revealed by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pillay, K.K.S.; Driscoll, D.C.; Jester, W.A.

    1975-01-01

    A systematic investigation using a variety of handguns has revealed the existence of distinguisable distribution patterns of firearm discharge residues on surfaces below the flight path of a bullet. The residues are identificable even at distances of 12 meters from the gun using nondestructive neutron activation analysis. The results of these investigations show that the distribution pattern for a gun is reproducible using similar ammunition and that there exist two distinct regions to the patterns developed between the firearm and the target-one with respect to the position of the gun and the other in the vicinity of the target. The judicious applications of these findings could be of significant value in criminal investigations. (T.G.)

  12. The structure of Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase reveals a novel redox switch that regulates its activities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chitnumsub, Penchit; Ittarat, Wanwipa; Jaruwat, Aritsara; Noytanom, Krittikar [National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, 113 Thailand Science Park, Paholyothin Road, Klong 1, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120 (Thailand); Amornwatcharapong, Watcharee [Mahidol University, Bangkok (Thailand); Pornthanakasem, Wichai [National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, 113 Thailand Science Park, Paholyothin Road, Klong 1, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120 (Thailand); Chaiyen, Pimchai [Mahidol University, Bangkok (Thailand); Yuthavong, Yongyuth; Leartsakulpanich, Ubolsree [National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, 113 Thailand Science Park, Paholyothin Road, Klong 1, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120 (Thailand)

    2014-06-01

    The crystal structure of P. falciparum SHMT revealed snapshots of an intriguing disulfide/sulfhydryl switch controlling the functional activity. Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase (PfSHMT), an enzyme in the dTMP synthesis cycle, is an antimalarial target because inhibition of its expression or function has been shown to be lethal to the parasite. As the wild-type enzyme could not be crystallized, protein engineering of residues on the surface was carried out. The surface-engineered mutant PfSHMT-F292E was successfully crystallized and its structure was determined at 3 Å resolution. The PfSHMT-F292E structure is a good representation of PfSHMT as this variant revealed biochemical properties similar to those of the wild type. Although the overall structure of PfSHMT is similar to those of other SHMTs, unique features including the presence of two loops and a distinctive cysteine pair formed by Cys125 and Cys364 in the tetrahydrofolate (THF) substrate binding pocket were identified. These structural characteristics have never been reported in other SHMTs. Biochemical characterization and mutation analysis of these two residues confirm that they act as a disulfide/sulfhydryl switch to regulate the THF-dependent catalytic function of the enzyme. This redox switch is not present in the human enzyme, in which the cysteine pair is absent. The data reported here can be further exploited as a new strategy to specifically disrupt the activity of the parasite enzyme without interfering with the function of the human enzyme.

  13. The structure of Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase reveals a novel redox switch that regulates its activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chitnumsub, Penchit; Ittarat, Wanwipa; Jaruwat, Aritsara; Noytanom, Krittikar; Amornwatcharapong, Watcharee; Pornthanakasem, Wichai; Chaiyen, Pimchai; Yuthavong, Yongyuth; Leartsakulpanich, Ubolsree

    2014-01-01

    The crystal structure of P. falciparum SHMT revealed snapshots of an intriguing disulfide/sulfhydryl switch controlling the functional activity. Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase (PfSHMT), an enzyme in the dTMP synthesis cycle, is an antimalarial target because inhibition of its expression or function has been shown to be lethal to the parasite. As the wild-type enzyme could not be crystallized, protein engineering of residues on the surface was carried out. The surface-engineered mutant PfSHMT-F292E was successfully crystallized and its structure was determined at 3 Å resolution. The PfSHMT-F292E structure is a good representation of PfSHMT as this variant revealed biochemical properties similar to those of the wild type. Although the overall structure of PfSHMT is similar to those of other SHMTs, unique features including the presence of two loops and a distinctive cysteine pair formed by Cys125 and Cys364 in the tetrahydrofolate (THF) substrate binding pocket were identified. These structural characteristics have never been reported in other SHMTs. Biochemical characterization and mutation analysis of these two residues confirm that they act as a disulfide/sulfhydryl switch to regulate the THF-dependent catalytic function of the enzyme. This redox switch is not present in the human enzyme, in which the cysteine pair is absent. The data reported here can be further exploited as a new strategy to specifically disrupt the activity of the parasite enzyme without interfering with the function of the human enzyme

  14. Characterization of the biocontrol activity of pseudomonas fluorescens strain X reveals novel genes regulated by glucose.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerasimos F Kremmydas

    Full Text Available Pseudomonas fluorescens strain X, a bacterial isolate from the rhizosphere of bean seedlings, has the ability to suppress damping-off caused by the oomycete Pythium ultimum. To determine the genes controlling the biocontrol activity of strain X, transposon mutagenesis, sequencing and complementation was performed. Results indicate that, biocontrol ability of this isolate is attributed to gcd gene encoding glucose dehydrogenase, genes encoding its co-enzyme pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ, and two genes (sup5 and sup6 which seem to be organized in a putative operon. This operon (named supX consists of five genes, one of which encodes a non-ribosomal peptide synthase. A unique binding site for a GntR-type transcriptional factor is localized upstream of the supX putative operon. Synteny comparison of the genes in supX revealed that they are common in the genus Pseudomonas, but with a low degree of similarity. supX shows high similarity only to the mangotoxin operon of Ps. syringae pv. syringae UMAF0158. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis indicated that transcription of supX is strongly reduced in the gcd and PQQ-minus mutants of Ps. fluorescens strain X. On the contrary, transcription of supX in the wild type is enhanced by glucose and transcription levels that appear to be higher during the stationary phase. Gcd, which uses PQQ as a cofactor, catalyses the oxidation of glucose to gluconic acid, which controls the activity of the GntR family of transcriptional factors. The genes in the supX putative operon have not been implicated before in the biocontrol of plant pathogens by pseudomonads. They are involved in the biosynthesis of an antimicrobial compound by Ps. fluorescens strain X and their transcription is controlled by glucose, possibly through the activity of a GntR-type transcriptional factor binding upstream of this putative operon.

  15. Glycan structure of Gc Protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor as revealed by mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Chad R; Rehder, Douglas S

    2016-09-15

    Disagreement exists regarding the O-glycan structure attached to human vitamin D binding protein (DBP). Previously reported evidence indicated that the O-glycan of the Gc1S allele product is the linear core 1 NeuNAc-Gal-GalNAc-Thr trisaccharide. Here, glycan structural evidence is provided from glycan linkage analysis and over 30 serial glycosidase-digestion experiments which were followed by analysis of the intact protein by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). Results demonstrate that the O-glycan from the Gc1F protein is the same linear trisaccharide found on the Gc1S protein and that the hexose residue is galactose. In addition, the putative anti-cancer derivative of DBP known as Gc Protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor (GcMAF, which is formed by the combined action of β-galactosidase and neuraminidase upon DBP) was analyzed intact by ESI-MS, revealing that the activating E. coli β-galactosidase cleaves nothing from the protein-leaving the glycan structure of active GcMAF as a Gal-GalNAc-Thr disaccharide, regardless of the order in which β-galactosidase and neuraminidase are applied. Moreover, glycosidase digestion results show that α-N-Acetylgalactosamindase (nagalase) lacks endoglycosidic function and only cleaves the DBP O-glycan once it has been trimmed down to a GalNAc-Thr monosaccharide-precluding the possibility of this enzyme removing the O-glycan trisaccharide from cancer-patient DBP in vivo. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Metagenomics, metatranscriptomics and single cell genomics reveal functional response of active Oceanospirillales to Gulf oil spill

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mason, Olivia U.; Hazen, Terry C.; Borglin, Sharon; Chain, Patrick S. G.; Dubinsky, Eric A.; Fortney, Julian L.; Han, James; Holman, Hoi-Ying N.; Hultman, Jenni; Lamendella, Regina; Mackelprang, Rachel; Malfatti, Stephanie; Tom, Lauren M.; Tringe, Susannah G.; Woyke, Tanja; Zhou, Jizhong; Rubin, Edward M.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2012-06-12

    The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico resulted in a deep-sea hydrocarbon plume that caused a shift in the indigenous microbial community composition with unknown ecological consequences. Early in the spill history, a bloom of uncultured, thus uncharacterized, members of the Oceanospirillales was previously detected, but their role in oil disposition was unknown. Here our aim was to determine the functional role of the Oceanospirillales and other active members of the indigenous microbial community using deep sequencing of community DNA and RNA, as well as single-cell genomics. Shotgun metagenomic and metatranscriptomic sequencing revealed that genes for motility, chemotaxis and aliphatic hydrocarbon degradation were significantly enriched and expressed in the hydrocarbon plume samples compared with uncontaminated seawater collected from plume depth. In contrast, although genes coding for degradation of more recalcitrant compounds, such as benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, total xylenes and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, were identified in the metagenomes, they were expressed at low levels, or not at all based on analysis of the metatranscriptomes. Isolation and sequencing of two Oceanospirillales single cells revealed that both cells possessed genes coding for n-alkane and cycloalkane degradation. Specifically, the near-complete pathway for cyclohexane oxidation in the Oceanospirillales single cells was elucidated and supported by both metagenome and metatranscriptome data. The draft genome also included genes for chemotaxis, motility and nutrient acquisition strategies that were also identified in the metagenomes and metatranscriptomes. These data point towards a rapid response of members of the Oceanospirillales to aliphatic hydrocarbons in the deep sea.

  17. Multitaxon activity profiling reveals differential microbial response to reduced seawater pH and oil pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coelho, Francisco J R C; Cleary, Daniel F R; Costa, Rodrigo; Ferreira, Marina; Polónia, Ana R M; Silva, Artur M S; Simões, Mário M Q; Oliveira, Vanessa; Gomes, Newton C M

    2016-09-01

    There is growing concern that predicted changes to global ocean chemistry will interact with anthropogenic pollution to significantly alter marine microbial composition and function. However, knowledge of the compounding effects of climate change stressors and anthropogenic pollution is limited. Here, we used 16S and 18S rRNA (cDNA)-based activity profiling to investigate the differential responses of selected microbial taxa to ocean acidification and oil hydrocarbon contamination under controlled laboratory conditions. Our results revealed that a lower relative abundance of sulphate-reducing bacteria (Desulfosarcina/Desulfococcus clade) due to an adverse effect of seawater acidification and oil hydrocarbon contamination (reduced pH-oil treatment) may be coupled to changes in sediment archaeal communities. In particular, we observed a pronounced compositional shift and marked reduction in the prevalence of otherwise abundant operational taxonomic units (OTUs) belonging to the archaeal Marine Benthic Group B and Marine Hydrothermal Vent Group (MHVG) in the reduced pH-oil treatment. Conversely, the abundance of several putative hydrocarbonoclastic fungal OTUs was higher in the reduced pH-oil treatment. Sediment hydrocarbon profiling, furthermore, revealed higher concentrations of several alkanes in the reduced pH-oil treatment, corroborating the functional implications of the structural changes to microbial community composition. Collectively, our results advance the understanding of the response of a complex microbial community to the interaction between reduced pH and anthropogenic pollution. In future acidified marine environments, oil hydrocarbon contamination may alter the typical mixotrophic and k-/r-strategist composition of surface sediment microbiomes towards a more heterotrophic state with lower doubling rates, thereby impairing the ability of the ecosystem to recover from acute oil contamination events. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Proteomics analysis of dendritic cell activation by contact allergens reveals possible biomarkers regulated by Nrf2

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mussotter, Franz, E-mail: franz.mussotter@bfr.bund.de [German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), Department of Chemical and Product Safety, Berlin (Germany); Tomm, Janina Melanie [Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), Department of Molecular Systems Biology, Leipzig (Germany); El Ali, Zeina; Pallardy, Marc; Kerdine-Römer, Saadia [INSERM UMR 996, Univ Paris-Sud, Université Paris-Saclay, Chátenay-Malabry (France); Götz, Mario [German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), Department of Chemical and Product Safety, Berlin (Germany); Bergen, Martin von [Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), Department of Molecular Systems Biology, Leipzig (Germany); University of Leipzig, Institute of Biochemistry, Leipzig (Germany); Aalborg University, Department of Chemistry and Bioscience, Aalborg (Denmark); Haase, Andrea; Luch, Andreas [German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), Department of Chemical and Product Safety, Berlin (Germany)

    2016-12-15

    Allergic contact dermatitis is a widespread disease with high clinical relevance affecting approximately 20% of the general population. Typically, contact allergens are low molecular weight electrophilic compounds which can activate the Keap1/Nrf2 pathway. We performed a proteomics study to reveal possible biomarkers for dendritic cell (DC) activation by contact allergens and to further elucidate the role of Keap1/Nrf2 signaling in this process. We used bone marrow derived dendritic cells (BMDCs) of wild-type (nrf2{sup +/+}) and Nrf2 knockout (nrf2{sup −/−}) mice and studied their response against the model contact sensitizers 2,4-dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB), cinnamaldehyde (CA) and nickel(II) sulfate by 2-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE) in combination with electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-MS/MS). Sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS, 100 μM) served as irritant control. While treatment with nickel(II) sulfate and SDS had only little effects, CA and DNCB led to significant changes in protein expression. We found 18 and 30 protein spots up-regulated in wild-type cells treated with 50 and 100 μM CA, respectively. For 5 and 10 μM DNCB, 32 and 37 spots were up-regulated, respectively. Almost all of these proteins were not differentially expressed in nrf2{sup −/−} BMDCs, indicating an Nrf2-dependent regulation. Among them proteins were detected which are involved in oxidative stress and heat shock responses, as well as in signal transduction or basic cellular pathways. The applied approach allowed us to differentiate between Nrf2-dependent and Nrf2-independent cellular biomarkers differentially regulated upon allergen-induced DC activation. The data presented might contribute to the further development of suitable in vitro testing methods for chemical-mediated sensitization. - Highlights: • Contact allergens induce proteins involved in DC maturation Nrf2-dependently. • Induction of these proteins points to a functional

  19. Bcl2-associated Athanogene 3 Interactome Analysis Reveals a New Role in Modulating Proteasome Activity*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ying; Yang, Li-Na; Cheng, Li; Tu, Shun; Guo, Shu-Juan; Le, Huang-Ying; Xiong, Qian; Mo, Ran; Li, Chong-Yang; Jeong, Jun-Seop; Jiang, Lizhi; Blackshaw, Seth; Bi, Li-Jun; Zhu, Heng; Tao, Sheng-Ce; Ge, Feng

    2013-01-01

    Bcl2-associated athanogene 3 (BAG3), a member of the BAG family of co-chaperones, plays a critical role in regulating apoptosis, development, cell motility, autophagy, and tumor metastasis and in mediating cell adaptive responses to stressful stimuli. BAG3 carries a BAG domain, a WW domain, and a proline-rich repeat (PXXP), all of which mediate binding to different partners. To elucidate BAG3's interaction network at the molecular level, we employed quantitative immunoprecipitation combined with knockdown and human proteome microarrays to comprehensively profile the BAG3 interactome in humans. We identified a total of 382 BAG3-interacting proteins with diverse functions, including transferase activity, nucleic acid binding, transcription factors, proteases, and chaperones, suggesting that BAG3 is a critical regulator of diverse cellular functions. In addition, we characterized interactions between BAG3 and some of its newly identified partners in greater detail. In particular, bioinformatic analysis revealed that the BAG3 interactome is strongly enriched in proteins functioning within the proteasome-ubiquitination process and that compose the proteasome complex itself, suggesting that a critical biological function of BAG3 is associated with the proteasome. Functional studies demonstrated that BAG3 indeed interacts with the proteasome and modulates its activity, sustaining cell survival and underlying resistance to therapy through the down-modulation of apoptosis. Taken as a whole, this study expands our knowledge of the BAG3 interactome, provides a valuable resource for understanding how BAG3 affects different cellular functions, and demonstrates that biologically relevant data can be harvested using this kind of integrated approach. PMID:23824909

  20. Structural Characterization of Maize SIRK1 Kinase Domain Reveals an Unusual Architecture of the Activation Segment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Aquino

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Kinases are primary regulators of plant metabolism and excellent targets for plant breeding. However, most kinases, including the abundant receptor-like kinases (RLK, have no assigned role. SIRK1 is a leucine-rich repeat receptor-like kinase (LRR-RLK, the largest family of RLK. In Arabidopsis thaliana, SIRK1 (AtSIRK1 is phosphorylated after sucrose is resupplied to sucrose-starved seedlings and it modulates the sugar response by phosphorylating several substrates. In maize, the ZmSIRK1 expression is altered in response to drought stress. In neither Arabidopsis nor in maize has the function of SIRK1 been completely elucidated. As a first step toward the biochemical characterization of ZmSIRK1, we obtained its recombinant kinase domain, demonstrated that it binds AMP-PNP, a non-hydrolysable ATP-analog, and solved the structure of ZmSIRK1- AMP-PNP co-crystal. The ZmSIRK1 crystal structure revealed a unique conformation for the activation segment. In an attempt to find inhibitors for ZmSIRK1, we screened a focused small molecule library and identified six compounds that stabilized ZmSIRK1 against thermal melt. ITC analysis confirmed that three of these compounds bound to ZmSIRK1 with low micromolar affinity. Solving the 3D structure of ZmSIRK1-AMP-PNP co-crystal provided information on the molecular mechanism of ZmSIRK1 activity. Furthermore, the identification of small molecules that bind this kinase can serve as initial backbone for development of new potent and selective ZmSIRK1 antagonists.

  1. Ribosome•RelA structures reveal the mechanism of stringent response activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loveland, Anna B; Bah, Eugene; Madireddy, Rohini; Zhang, Ying; Brilot, Axel F; Grigorieff, Nikolaus; Korostelev, Andrei A

    2016-01-01

    Stringent response is a conserved bacterial stress response underlying virulence and antibiotic resistance. RelA/SpoT-homolog proteins synthesize transcriptional modulators (p)ppGpp, allowing bacteria to adapt to stress. RelA is activated during amino-acid starvation, when cognate deacyl-tRNA binds to the ribosomal A (aminoacyl-tRNA) site. We report four cryo-EM structures of E. coli RelA bound to the 70S ribosome, in the absence and presence of deacyl-tRNA accommodating in the 30S A site. The boomerang-shaped RelA with a wingspan of more than 100 Å wraps around the A/R (30S A-site/RelA-bound) tRNA. The CCA end of the A/R tRNA pins the central TGS domain against the 30S subunit, presenting the (p)ppGpp-synthetase domain near the 30S spur. The ribosome and A/R tRNA are captured in three conformations, revealing hitherto elusive states of tRNA engagement with the ribosomal decoding center. Decoding-center rearrangements are coupled with the step-wise 30S-subunit 'closure', providing insights into the dynamics of high-fidelity tRNA decoding. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.17029.001 PMID:27434674

  2. Active nuclear transcriptome analysis reveals inflammasome-dependent mechanism for early neutrophil response to Mycobacterium marinum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenyon, Amy; Gavriouchkina, Daria; Zorman, Jernej; Napolitani, Giorgio; Cerundolo, Vincenzo; Sauka-Spengler, Tatjana

    2017-07-26

    The mechanisms governing neutrophil response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis remain poorly understood. In this study we utilise biotagging, a novel genome-wide profiling approach based on cell type-specific in vivo biotinylation in zebrafish to analyse the initial response of neutrophils to Mycobacterium marinum, a close genetic relative of M. tuberculosis used to model tuberculosis. Differential expression analysis following nuclear RNA-seq of neutrophil active transcriptomes reveals a significant upregulation in both damage-sensing and effector components of the inflammasome, including caspase b, NLRC3 ortholog (wu: fb15h11) and il1β. Crispr/Cas9-mediated knockout of caspase b, which acts by proteolytic processing of il1β, results in increased bacterial burden and less infiltration of macrophages to sites of mycobacterial infection, thus impairing granuloma development. We also show that a number of immediate early response genes (IEGs) are responsible for orchestrating the initial neutrophil response to mycobacterial infection. Further perturbation of the IEGs exposes egr3 as a key transcriptional regulator controlling il1β transcription.

  3. Quantitative ligand and receptor binding studies reveal the mechanism of interleukin-36 (IL-36) pathway activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Li; Todorovic, Viktor; Kakavas, Steve; Sielaff, Bernhard; Medina, Limary; Wang, Leyu; Sadhukhan, Ramkrishna; Stockmann, Henning; Richardson, Paul L; DiGiammarino, Enrico; Sun, Chaohong; Scott, Victoria

    2018-01-12

    IL-36 cytokines signal through the IL-36 receptor (IL-36R) and a shared subunit, IL-1RAcP (IL-1 receptor accessory protein). The activation mechanism for the IL-36 pathway is proposed to be similar to that of IL-1 in that an IL-36R agonist (IL-36α, IL-36β, or IL-36γ) forms a binary complex with IL-36R, which then recruits IL-1RAcP. Recent studies have shown that IL-36R interacts with IL-1RAcP even in the absence of an agonist. To elucidate the IL-36 activation mechanism, we considered all possible binding events for IL-36 ligands/receptors and examined these events in direct binding assays. Our results indicated that the agonists bind the IL-36R extracellular domain with micromolar affinity but do not detectably bind IL-1RAcP. Using surface plasmon resonance (SPR), we found that IL-1RAcP also does not bind IL-36R when no agonist is present. In the presence of IL-36α, however, IL-1RAcP bound IL-36R strongly. These results suggested that the main pathway to the IL-36R·IL-36α·IL-1RAcP ternary complex is through the IL-36R·IL-36α binary complex, which recruits IL-1RAcP. We could not measure the binding affinity of IL-36R to IL-1RAcP directly, so we engineered a fragment crystallizable-linked construct to induce IL-36R·IL-1RAcP heterodimerization and predicted the binding affinity during a complete thermodynamic cycle to be 74 μm The SPR analysis also indicated that the IL-36R antagonist IL-36Ra binds IL-36R with higher affinity and a much slower off rate than the IL-36R agonists, shedding light on IL-36 pathway inhibition. Our results reveal the landscape of IL-36 ligand and receptor interactions, improving our understanding of IL-36 pathway activation and inhibition. © 2018 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  4. Trace metal depositional patterns from an open pit mining activity as revealed by archived avian gizzard contents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bendell, L.I., E-mail: bendell@sfu.ca

    2011-02-15

    Archived samples of blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus) gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, collected yearly between 1959 and 1970 were analyzed for cadmium, lead, zinc, and copper content. Approximately halfway through the 12-year sampling period, an open-pit copper mine began activities, then ceased operations 2 years later. Thus the archived samples provided a unique opportunity to determine if avian gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, could reveal patterns in the anthropogenic deposition of trace metals associated with mining activities. Gizzard concentrations of cadmium and copper strongly coincided with the onset of opening and the closing of the pit mining activity. Gizzard zinc and lead demonstrated significant among year variation; however, maximum concentrations did not correlate to mining activity. The archived gizzard contents did provide a useful tool for documenting trends in metal depositional patterns related to an anthropogenic activity. Further, blue grouse ingesting grit particles during the time of active mining activity would have been exposed to toxicologically significant levels of cadmium. Gizzard lead concentrations were also of toxicological significance but not related to mining activity. This type of 'pulse' toxic metal exposure as a consequence of open-pit mining activity would not necessarily have been revealed through a 'snap-shot' of soil, plant or avian tissue trace metal analysis post-mining activity. - Research Highlights: {yields} Archived gizzard samples reveals mining history. {yields} Grit ingestion exposes grouse to cadmium and lead. {yields} Grit selection includes particles enriched in cadmium. {yields} Cadmium enriched particles are of toxicological significance.

  5. Metabolic activity of uncultivated magnetotactic bacteria revealed by NanoSIMS

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, M.; Zhang, W.; Gu, L.; Pan, Y.; Lin, W.

    2017-12-01

    Microorganisms that exhibit magnetotaxis behavior, collectively known as the magnetotactic bacteria (MTB), are those whose motility is influenced by the Earth's magnetic field. MTB are a physiologically diverse group of bacteria with a unique feature of intracellular biomineralization of magnetosomes (Fe3O4 and/or Fe3S4) (Bazylinski et al., 2013). However, the ecophysiology of uncultivated MTB, especially those within the Nitrospirae phylum forming hundreds of bullet-shaped magnetite magnetosomes per cell, is still not well characterized (Lin et al., 2014). Nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry (NanoSIMS) is a powerful tool for revealing element distribution in nanometer-scale resolution, which opens exciting possibilities for the study of interactions between microorganisms and environments (Gao et al., 2016; Musat et al., 2016). Here we applied NanoSIMS to investigate the dynamics of carbon and nitrogen assimilations in two magnetotactic Nitrospirae populations at single cell level. Our NanoSIMS results confirmed the metabolic potential of Nitrospirae MTB proposed by genomic and metagenomic analysis and provided additional insights into the ecophysiology of uncultivated MTB. This study suggests that NanoSIMS-based analyses are powerful approaches for investigating and characterizing the ecological function of environmental microorganisms. References: Bazylinski D A., Lefèvre, C T., Schüler D., 2013. Magnetotactic Bacteria. 453-494.Lin W, Bazylinski DA, Xiao T, Wu L- F, Pan Y., 2014. Life with compass: diversity and biogeography of magnetotactic bacteria. Environ Microbiol, 16: 1462-2920.Gao D., Huang X., Tao Y., 2016. A critical review of NanoSIMS in analysis of microbial metabolic activities at single-cell level. Crit Rev Biotechnol, 36: 884-890.Musat N., Musat F., Weber PK., Pett-Ridge J., 2016. Tracking microbial interactions with NanoSIMS. Curr Opin Biotechnol, 41: 114-121.

  6. Epitope mapping for monoclonal antibody reveals the activation mechanism for αVβ3 integrin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tetsuji Kamata

    Full Text Available Epitopes for a panel of anti-αVβ3 monoclonal antibodies (mAbs were investigated to explore the activation mechanism of αVβ3 integrin. Experiments utilizing αV/αIIb domain-swapping chimeras revealed that among the nine mAbs tested, five recognized the ligand-binding β-propeller domain and four recognized the thigh domain, which is the upper leg of the αV chain. Interestingly, the four mAbs included function-blocking as well as non-functional mAbs, although they bound at a distance from the ligand-binding site. The epitopes for these four mAbs were further determined using human-to-mouse αV chimeras. Among the four, P3G8 recognized an amino acid residue, Ser-528, located on the side of the thigh domain, while AMF-7, M9, and P2W7 all recognized a common epitope, Ser-462, that was located close to the α-genu, where integrin makes a sharp bend in the crystal structure. Fibrinogen binding studies for cells expressing wild-type αVβ3 confirmed that AMF-7, M9, and P2W7 were inhibitory, while P3G8 was non-functional. However, these mAbs were all unable to block binding when αVβ3 was constrained in its extended conformation. These results suggest that AMF-7, M9, and P2W7 block ligand binding allosterically by stabilizing the angle of the bend in the bent conformation. Thus, a switchblade-like movement of the integrin leg is indispensable for the affinity regulation of αVβ3 integrin.

  7. Gene expression analysis after receptor tyrosine kinase activation reveals new potential melanoma proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Teutschbein, Janka; Haydn, Johannes M; Samans, Birgit; Krause, Michael; Eilers, Martin; Schartl, Manfred; Meierjohann, Svenja

    2010-01-01

    Melanoma is an aggressive tumor with increasing incidence. To develop accurate prognostic markers and targeted therapies, changes leading to malignant transformation of melanocytes need to be understood. In the Xiphophorus melanoma model system, a mutated version of the EGF receptor Xmrk (Xiphophorus melanoma receptor kinase) triggers melanomagenesis. Cellular events downstream of Xmrk, such as the activation of Akt, Ras, B-Raf or Stat5, were also shown to play a role in human melanomagenesis. This makes the elucidation of Xmrk downstream targets a useful method for identifying processes involved in melanoma formation. Here, we analyzed Xmrk-induced gene expression using a microarray approach. Several highly expressed genes were confirmed by realtime PCR, and pathways responsible for their induction were revealed using small molecule inhibitors. The expression of these genes was also monitored in human melanoma cell lines, and the target gene FOSL1 was knocked down by siRNA. Proliferation and migration of siRNA-treated melanoma cell lines were then investigated. Genes with the strongest upregulation after receptor activation were FOS-like antigen 1 (Fosl1), early growth response 1 (Egr1), osteopontin (Opn), insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3 (Igfbp3), dual-specificity phosphatase 4 (Dusp4), and tumor-associated antigen L6 (Taal6). Interestingly, most genes were blocked in presence of a SRC kinase inhibitor. Importantly, we found that FOSL1, OPN, IGFBP3, DUSP4, and TAAL6 also exhibited increased expression levels in human melanoma cell lines compared to human melanocytes. Knockdown of FOSL1 in human melanoma cell lines reduced their proliferation and migration. Altogether, the data show that the receptor tyrosine kinase Xmrk is a useful tool in the identification of target genes that are commonly expressed in Xmrk-transgenic melanocytes and melanoma cell lines. The identified molecules constitute new possible molecular players in melanoma development

  8. Multichannel detrended fluctuation analysis reveals synchronized patterns of spontaneous spinal activity in anesthetized cats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erika E Rodríguez

    Full Text Available The analysis of the interaction and synchronization of relatively large ensembles of neurons is fundamental for the understanding of complex functions of the nervous system. It is known that the temporal synchronization of neural ensembles is involved in the generation of specific motor, sensory or cognitive processes. Also, the intersegmental coherence of spinal spontaneous activity may indicate the existence of synaptic neural pathways between different pairs of lumbar segments. In this study we present a multichannel version of the detrended fluctuation analysis method (mDFA to analyze the correlation dynamics of spontaneous spinal activity (SSA from time series analysis. This method together with the classical detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA were used to find out whether the SSA recorded in one or several segments in the spinal cord of the anesthetized cat occurs either in a random or in an organized manner. Our results are consistent with a non-random organization of the sets of neurons involved in the generation of spontaneous cord dorsum potentials (CDPs recorded either from one lumbar segment (DFA-α mean = 1.04[Formula: see text]0.09 or simultaneously from several lumbar segments (mDFA-α mean = 1.01[Formula: see text]0.06, where α = 0.5 indicates randomness while α = 0.5 indicates long-term correlations. To test the sensitivity of the mDFA method we also examined the effects of small spinal lesions aimed to partially interrupt connectivity between neighboring lumbosacral segments. We found that the synchronization and correlation between the CDPs recorded from the L5 and L6 segments in both sides of the spinal cord were reduced when a lesion comprising the left dorsal quadrant was performed between the segments L5 and L6 (mDFA-[Formula: see text] = 0.992 as compared to initial conditions mDFA-α = 1.186. The synchronization and correlation were reduced even further after a similar additional right spinal lesion (mDFA-α = 0

  9. Gene expression analysis after receptor tyrosine kinase activation reveals new potential melanoma proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krause Michael

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Melanoma is an aggressive tumor with increasing incidence. To develop accurate prognostic markers and targeted therapies, changes leading to malignant transformation of melanocytes need to be understood. In the Xiphophorus melanoma model system, a mutated version of the EGF receptor Xmrk (Xiphophorus melanoma receptor kinase triggers melanomagenesis. Cellular events downstream of Xmrk, such as the activation of Akt, Ras, B-Raf or Stat5, were also shown to play a role in human melanomagenesis. This makes the elucidation of Xmrk downstream targets a useful method for identifying processes involved in melanoma formation. Methods Here, we analyzed Xmrk-induced gene expression using a microarray approach. Several highly expressed genes were confirmed by realtime PCR, and pathways responsible for their induction were revealed using small molecule inhibitors. The expression of these genes was also monitored in human melanoma cell lines, and the target gene FOSL1 was knocked down by siRNA. Proliferation and migration of siRNA-treated melanoma cell lines were then investigated. Results Genes with the strongest upregulation after receptor activation were FOS-like antigen 1 (Fosl1, early growth response 1 (Egr1, osteopontin (Opn, insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3 (Igfbp3, dual-specificity phosphatase 4 (Dusp4, and tumor-associated antigen L6 (Taal6. Interestingly, most genes were blocked in presence of a SRC kinase inhibitor. Importantly, we found that FOSL1, OPN, IGFBP3, DUSP4, and TAAL6 also exhibited increased expression levels in human melanoma cell lines compared to human melanocytes. Knockdown of FOSL1 in human melanoma cell lines reduced their proliferation and migration. Conclusion Altogether, the data show that the receptor tyrosine kinase Xmrk is a useful tool in the identification of target genes that are commonly expressed in Xmrk-transgenic melanocytes and melanoma cell lines. The identified molecules constitute

  10. Structure-activity studies of RFamide peptides reveal subtype-selective activation of neuropeptide FF1 and FF2 receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Findeisen, Maria; Rathmann, Daniel; Beck-Sickinger, Annette G

    2011-06-06

    Selectivity is a major issue in closely related multiligand/multireceptor systems. In this study we investigated the RFamide systems of hNPFF₁R and hNPFF₂R that bind the endogenous peptide hormones NPFF, NPAF, NPVF, and NPSF. By use of a systematic approach, we characterized the role of the C-terminal dipeptide with respect to agonistic properties using synthesized [Xaa 7]NPFF and [Xaa 8]NPFF analogues. We were able to identify only slight differences in potency upon changing the position of Arg 7, as all modifications resulted in identical behavior at the NPFF₁R and NPFF₂R. However, the C-terminal Phe 8 was able to be replaced by Trp or His with only a minor loss in potency at the NPFF₂R relative to the NPFF₁R. Analogues with shorter side chains, such as α-amino-4-guanidino butyric acid ([Agb 7]NPFF) or phenylglycine ([Phg 8]NPFF), decreased efficacy for the NPFF₁ R to 25-31 % of the maximal response, suggesting that these agonist-receptor complexes are more susceptible to structural modifications. In contrast, mutations to the conserved Asp 6.59 residue in the third extracellular loop of both receptors revealed a higher sensitivity toward the hNPFF₂R receptor than toward hNPFF₁R. These data provide new insight into the subtype-specific agonistic activation of the NPFF₁ and NPFF(2) receptors that are necessary for the development of selective agonists. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. Trace metal depositional patterns from an open pit mining activity as revealed by archived avian gizzard contents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendell, L I

    2011-02-15

    Archived samples of blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus) gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, collected yearly between 1959 and 1970 were analyzed for cadmium, lead, zinc, and copper content. Approximately halfway through the 12-year sampling period, an open-pit copper mine began activities, then ceased operations 2 years later. Thus the archived samples provided a unique opportunity to determine if avian gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, could reveal patterns in the anthropogenic deposition of trace metals associated with mining activities. Gizzard concentrations of cadmium and copper strongly coincided with the onset of opening and the closing of the pit mining activity. Gizzard zinc and lead demonstrated significant among year variation; however, maximum concentrations did not correlate to mining activity. The archived gizzard contents did provide a useful tool for documenting trends in metal depositional patterns related to an anthropogenic activity. Further, blue grouse ingesting grit particles during the time of active mining activity would have been exposed to toxicologically significant levels of cadmium. Gizzard lead concentrations were also of toxicological significance but not related to mining activity. This type of "pulse" toxic metal exposure as a consequence of open-pit mining activity would not necessarily have been revealed through a "snap-shot" of soil, plant or avian tissue trace metal analysis post-mining activity. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Engagement in activities revealing the body and psychosocial adjustment in adults with a trans-tibial prosthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donovan-Hall, M K; Yardley, L; Watts, R J

    2002-04-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of the appearance of a prosthesis on social behaviour, social discomfort and psychological well-being in eleven amputees taking delivery of a prosthesis with a silicone cover. Two new scales were developed: the 'Engagement in everyday activities involving revealing the body' (EEARB); and the 'Discomfort-Engagement in everyday activities involving revealing the body' (Discomfort-EEARB) scales. The psychometric properties of these scales were determined using a sample of 101 able-bodied adults. The Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale and the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale were also used to measure psychological well-being in the amputee sample. The EEARB and Discomfort-EEARB proved to have good reliability and validity. Comparison of amputees' scores prior to receiving the silicone cosmesis with those of the able-bodied adults revealed significant behavioural limitations and social discomfort, associated with low self-esteem, anxiety and depression. There was a significant increase in amputees' scores three months afier taking delivery of their prosthesis, indicating that amputees reported engaging in more activities which involved revealing their body, and that they would feel more comfortable in situations which involved revealing the body. As the amputee sample available was small and self-selected, it is not possible to generalise these findings to the amputee population as a whole. However, since there is little previous research investigating the effects of the appearance of the prosthesis, these findings demonstrate the need for further research in this area.

  13. Selective activation of SHP2 activity by cisplatin revealed by a novel chemical probe-based assay

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuo, Chun-Chen; Chu, Chi-Yuan; Lin, Jing-Jer; Lo, Lee-Chiang

    2010-01-01

    Src homology-2 (SH2) domain-containing phosphatase 2 (SHP2) is known to participate in several different signaling pathways to mediate cell growth, survival, migration, and differentiation. However, due to the lack of proper analytical tools, it is unclear whether the phosphatase activity of SHP2 is activated in most studies. We have previously developed an activity-based probe LCL2 that formed covalent linkage with catalytically active protein tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs). Here, by combining LCL2 with a SHP2 specific antibody, we established an assay system that enables the direct monitoring of SHP2 activity upon cisplatin treatment of cancer cells. The protocol is advantageous over conventional colorimetric or in-gel PTP assays as it is specific and does not require the use of radioisotope reagents. Using this assay, we found SHP2 activity was selectively activated by cisplatin. Moreover, the activation of SHP2 appeared to be specific for cisplatin as other DNA damage agents failed to activate the activity. Although the role of SHP2 activation by cisplatin treatments is still unclear to us, our results provide the first direct evidence for the activation of SHP2 during cisplatin treatments. More importantly, the concept of using activity-based probe in conjunction with target-specific antibodies could be extended to other enzyme classes.

  14. An Angiotensin II type 1 receptor activation switch patch revealed through Evolutionary Trace analysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bonde, Marie Mi; Yao, Rong; Ma, Jian-Nong

    2010-01-01

    to be completely resolved. Evolutionary Trace (ET) analysis is a computational method, which identifies clusters of functionally important residues by integrating information on evolutionary important residue variations with receptor structure. Combined with known mutational data, ET predicted a patch of residues......) displayed phenotypes associated with changed activation state, such as increased agonist affinity or basal activity, promiscuous activation, or constitutive internalization highlighting the importance of testing different signaling pathways. We conclude that this evolutionary important patch mediates...

  15. Reveal the response of enzyme activities to heavy metals through in situ zymography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, Chengjiao; Fang, Linchuan; Yang, Congli; Chen, Weibin; Cui, Yongxing; Li, Shiqing

    2018-07-30

    Enzymes in the soil are vital for assessing heavy metal soil pollution. Although the presence of heavy metals is thought to change the soil enzyme system, the distribution of enzyme activities in heavy metal polluted-soil is still unknown. For the first time, using soil zymography, we analyzed the distribution of enzyme activities of alfalfa rhizosphere and soil surface in the metal-contaminated soil. The results showed that the growth of alfalfa was significantly inhibited, and an impact that was most pronounced in seedling biomass and chlorophyll content. Catalase activity (CAT) in alfalfa decreased with increasing heavy metal concentrations, while malondialdehyde (MDA) content continually increased. The distribution of enzyme activities showed that both phosphatase and β-glucosidase activities were associated with the roots and were rarely distributed throughout the soil. In addition, the total hotspot areas of enzyme activities were the highest in extremely heavy pollution soil. The hotspot areas of phosphatase were 3.4%, 1.5% and 7.1% under none, moderate and extremely heavy pollution treatment, respectively, but increased from 0.1% to 0.9% for β-glucosidase with the increasing pollution levels. Compared with the traditional method of enzyme activities, zymography can directly and accurately reflect the distribution and extent of enzyme activity in heavy metals polluted soil. The results provide an efficient research method for exploring the interaction between enzyme activities and plant rhizosphere. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Using Carbohydrate Interaction Assays to Reveal Novel Binding Sites in Carbohydrate Active Enzymes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cockburn, Darrell; Wilkens, Casper; Dilokpimol, Adiphol

    2016-01-01

    Carbohydrate active enzymes often contain auxiliary binding sites located either on independent domains termed carbohydrate binding modules (CBMs) or as so-called surface binding sites (SBSs) on the catalytic module at a certain distance from the active site. The SBSs are usually critical...

  17. Focus group interviews reveal reasons for differences in the perception of disease activity in rheumatoid arthritis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.J. Walter (Margot); van’t Spijker, A. (Adriaan); A. Pasma (Annelieke); J.M.W. Hazes (Mieke); J.J. Luime (Jolanda)

    2017-01-01

    textabstractObjective: Doctors frequently see patients who have difficulties coping with their disease and rate their disease activity high, despite the fact that according to the doctors, the disease activity is low. This study explored the patients’ perspectives on this discordance that may help

  18. Teacher Knowledge for Active-Learning Instruction: Expert-Novice Comparison Reveals Differences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auerbach, A. J.; Higgins, M.; Brickman, P.; Andrews, T. C.

    2018-01-01

    Active-learning strategies "can" improve science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) undergraduates' abilities to learn fundamental concepts and skills. However, the results instructors achieve vary substantially. One explanation for this is that instructors commonly implement active learning differently than intended. An…

  19. Reconstituted NALP1 inflammasome reveals two-step mechanism of caspase-1 activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faustin, Benjamin; Lartigue, Lydia; Bruey, Jean-Marie; Luciano, Frederic; Sergienko, Eduard; Bailly-Maitre, Beatrice; Volkmann, Niels; Hanein, Dorit; Rouiller, Isabelle; Reed, John C

    2007-03-09

    Interleukin (IL)-1beta maturation is accomplished by caspase-1-mediated proteolysis, an essential element of innate immunity. NLRs constitute a recently recognized family of caspase-1-activating proteins, which contain a nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain and leucine-rich repeat (LRR) domains and which assemble into multiprotein complexes to create caspase-1-activating platforms called "inflammasomes." Using purified recombinant proteins, we have reconstituted the NALP1 inflammasome and have characterized the requirements for inflammasome assembly and caspase-1 activation. Oligomerization of NALP1 and activation of caspase-1 occur via a two-step mechanism, requiring microbial product, muramyl-dipeptide, a component of peptidoglycan, followed by ribonucleoside triphosphates. Caspase-1 activation by NALP1 does not require but is enhanced by adaptor protein ASC. The findings provide the biochemical basis for understanding how inflammasome assembly and function are regulated, and shed light on NALP1 as a direct sensor of bacterial components in host defense against pathogens.

  20. Revealing hidden effect of earthworm on C distribution and enzyme activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Razavi, Bahar S.; Hoang, Duyen; Kuzyakov, Yakov

    2017-04-01

    Despite its importance for terrestrial nutrient and carbon cycling, the spatial organization and localization of microbial activity in soil and in biopores is poorly understood. We hypothesized that biopores created by earthworm play a critical role in reducing the gap of SOM input and microbial activities between topsoil and subsoil. Accordingly, Carbon (C) allocation by earthworms was related to enzyme distribution along soil profile. For the first time we visualized spatial distribution of enzyme activities (β-glucosidase, chitinase and acid phosphatase) and C allocation (by 14C imaging) in earthworm biopores in topsoil and subsoil. Soil zymography (an in situ method for the analysis of the two-dimensional distribution of enzyme activity in soil) was accompanied with 14C imaging (a method that enables to trace distribution of litter and C in soil profile) to visualize change of enzyme activities along with SOM incorporation by earthworms from topsoil to subsoil. Experiment was set up acquiring rhizoboxes (9×1×50 cm) filled up with fresh soil and 3 earthworms (L. terrestris), which were then layered with 14C-labeled plant-litter of 0.3 MBq on the soil surface. 14C imaging and zymography have been carried out after one month. Activities of all enzymes regardless of their nutrient involvement (C, N, P) were higher in the biopores than in bulk soil, but the differences were larger in topsoil compared to subsoil. Among three enzymes, Phosphatase activity was 4-times higher in the biopore than in the bulk soil. Phosphatase activity was closely associated with edge of burrows and correlate positively with 14C activity. These results emphasized especial contribution of hotspheres such as biopores to C allocation in subsoil - which is limited in C input and nutrients - and in stimulation of microbial and enzymatic activity by input of organic residues, e.g. by earthworms. In conclusion, biopore increased enzymatic mobilization of nutrients (e.g. P) inducing allocation

  1. Knockin of Cre Gene at Ins2 Locus Reveals No Cre Activity in Mouse Hypothalamic Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ling; Gao, Lin; Wang, Kejia; Ma, Xianhua; Chang, Xusheng; Shi, Jian-Hui; Zhang, Ye; Yin, Kai; Liu, Zhimin; Shi, Yuguang; Xie, Zhifang; Zhang, Weiping J

    2016-02-02

    The recombination efficiency and cell specificity of Cre driver lines are critical for exploring pancreatic β cell biology with the Cre/LoxP approach. Some commonly used Cre lines are based on the short Ins2 promoter fragment and show recombination activity in hypothalamic neurons; however, whether this stems from endogenous Ins2 promoter activity remains controversial. In this study, we generated Ins2-Cre knockin mice with a targeted insertion of IRES-Cre at the Ins2 locus and demonstrated with a cell lineage tracing study that the Ins2 gene is not transcriptionally active in the hypothalamus. The Ins2-Cre driver line displayed robust Cre expression and activity in pancreatic β cells without significant alterations in insulin expression. In the brain, Cre activity was mainly restricted to the choroid plexus, without significant recombination detected in the hippocampus or hypothalamus by the LacZ or fluorescent tdTomato reporters. Furthermore, Ins2-Cre mice exhibited normal glucose tolerance and insulin secretion upon glucose stimulation in vivo. In conclusion, this Ins2-Cre driver line allowed high-fidelity detection of endogenous Ins2 promoter activity in vivo, and the negative activity in the hypothalamus demonstrated that this system is a promising alternative tool for studying β cell biology.

  2. Serine Proteolytic Pathway Activation Reveals an Expanded Ensemble of Wound Response Genes in Drosophila

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patterson, Rachel A.; Juarez, Michelle T.; Hermann, Anita; Sasik, Roman; Hardiman, Gary; McGinnis, William

    2013-01-01

    After injury to the animal epidermis, a variety of genes are transcriptionally activated in nearby cells to regenerate the missing cells and facilitate barrier repair. The range and types of diffusible wound signals that are produced by damaged epidermis and function to activate repair genes during epidermal regeneration remains a subject of very active study in many animals. In Drosophila embryos, we have discovered that serine protease function is locally activated around wound sites, and is also required for localized activation of epidermal repair genes. The serine protease trypsin is sufficient to induce a striking global epidermal wound response without inflicting cell death or compromising the integrity of the epithelial barrier. We developed a trypsin wounding treatment as an amplification tool to more fully understand the changes in the Drosophila transcriptome that occur after epidermal injury. By comparing our array results with similar results on mammalian skin wounding we can see which evolutionarily conserved pathways are activated after epidermal wounding in very diverse animals. Our innovative serine protease-mediated wounding protocol allowed us to identify 8 additional genes that are activated in epidermal cells in the immediate vicinity of puncture wounds, and the functions of many of these genes suggest novel genetic pathways that may control epidermal wound repair. Additionally, our data augments the evidence that clean puncture wounding can mount a powerful innate immune transcriptional response, with different innate immune genes being activated in an interesting variety of ways. These include puncture-induced activation only in epidermal cells in the immediate vicinity of wounds, or in all epidermal cells, or specifically in the fat body, or in multiple tissues. PMID:23637905

  3. Correlations between human mobility and social interaction reveal general activity patterns

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mollgaard, Anders; Jørgensen, Sune Lehmann; Mathiesen, Joachim

    2017-01-01

    activity types, namely communication, motion, and physical proximity by analyzing data collected from smartphones distributed among 638 individuals. We explore two central questions: Which underlying principles govern the formation of the activity patterns? Are the patterns specific to each individual...... or shared across the entire population? We find that statistics of the entire population allows us to successfully predict 71% of the activity and 85% of the inactivity involved in communication, mobility, and physical proximity. Surprisingly, individual level statistics only result in marginally better...... they be of social or of physical character....

  4. Different patterns of auditory cortex activation revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Formisano, E; Pepino, A; Bracale, M [Department of Electronic Engineering, Biomedical Unit, Universita di Napoli, Federic II, Italy, Via Claudio 21, 80125 Napoli (Italy); Di Salle, F [Department of Biomorphological and Functional Sciences, Radiologucal Unit, Universita di Napoli, Federic II, Italy, Via Claudio 21, 80125 Napoli (Italy); Lanfermann, H; Zanella, F E [Department of Neuroradiology, J.W. Goethe Universitat, Frankfurt/M. (Germany)

    1999-12-31

    In the last few years, functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) has been widely accepted as an effective tool for mapping brain activities in both the sensorimotor and the cognitive field. The present work aims to assess the possibility of using fMRI methods to study the cortical response to different acoustic stimuli. Furthermore, we refer to recent data collected at Frankfurt University on the cortical pattern of auditory hallucinations. Healthy subjects showed broad bilateral activation, mostly located in the transverse gyrus of Heschl. The analysis of the cortical activation induced by different stimuli has pointed out a remarkable difference in the spatial and temporal features of the auditory cortex response to pulsed tones and pure tones. The activated areas during episodes of auditory hallucinations match the location of primary auditory cortex as defined in control measurements with the same patients and in the experiments on healthy subjects. (authors) 17 refs., 4 figs.

  5. Spores of most common airborne fungi reveal no ice nucleation activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pummer, B. G.; Atanasova, L.; Bauer, H.; Bernardi, J.; Druzhinina, I. S.; Grothe, H.

    2013-06-01

    Fungal spores are ubiquitous biological aerosols, which are considered to show ice nucleation (IN) activity. In this study the respective IN activity was tested in oil emulsion in the immersion freezing mode. The focus was laid on species of economical, ecological or sanitary significance. For the first time, not only common moulds, but also edible mushrooms (Basidiomycota, Agaricomycetes) were investigated, as they contribute massively to the total amount of fungal spores in the atmosphere. Only Fusarium avenaceum showed freezing events at low subzero-temperatures, while the other investigated fungal spores showed no significant IN activity. Furthermore, we selected a set of fungal strains from different sites and exposed them to occasional freezing stress during cultivation. Although the total protein expression was altered by this treatment, it had no significant impact on the IN activity.

  6. Different patterns of auditory cortex activation revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Formisano, E.; Pepino, A.; Bracale, M.; Di Salle, F.; Lanfermann, H.; Zanella, F.E.

    1998-01-01

    In the last few years, functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) has been widely accepted as an effective tool for mapping brain activities in both the sensorimotor and the cognitive field. The present work aims to assess the possibility of using fMRI methods to study the cortical response to different acoustic stimuli. Furthermore, we refer to recent data collected at Frankfurt University on the cortical pattern of auditory hallucinations. Healthy subjects showed broad bilateral activation, mostly located in the transverse gyrus of Heschl. The analysis of the cortical activation induced by different stimuli has pointed out a remarkable difference in the spatial and temporal features of the auditory cortex response to pulsed tones and pure tones. The activated areas during episodes of auditory hallucinations match the location of primary auditory cortex as defined in control measurements with the same patients and in the experiments on healthy subjects. (authors)

  7. Teacher Knowledge for Active-Learning Instruction: Expert-Novice Comparison Reveals Differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auerbach, A J; Higgins, M; Brickman, P; Andrews, T C

    2018-01-01

    Active-learning strategies can improve science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) undergraduates' abilities to learn fundamental concepts and skills. However, the results instructors achieve vary substantially. One explanation for this is that instructors commonly implement active learning differently than intended. An important factor affecting how instructors implement active learning is knowledge of teaching and learning. We aimed to discover knowledge that is important to effective active learning in large undergraduate courses. We developed a lesson-analysis instrument to elicit teacher knowledge, drawing on the theoretical construct of teacher noticing. We compared the knowledge used by expert ( n = 14) and novice ( n = 29) active-learning instructors as they analyzed lessons. Experts and novices differed in what they noticed, with experts more commonly considering how instructors hold students accountable, topic-specific student difficulties, whether the instructor elicited and responded to student thinking, and opportunities students had to generate their own ideas and work. Experts were also better able to support their lesson analyses with reasoning. This work provides foundational knowledge for the future design of preparation and support for instructors adopting active learning. Improving teacher knowledge will improve the implementation of active learning, which will be necessary to widely realize the potential benefits of active learning in undergraduate STEM. © 2018 A. J. Auerbach et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2018 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). 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).

  8. Active mechanics in living oocytes reveal molecular-scale force kinetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, Wylie; Fodor, Etienne; Almonacid, Maria; Bussonnier, Matthias; Verlhac, Marie-Helene; Gov, Nir; Visco, Paolo; van Wijland, Frederic; Betz, Timo

    Unlike traditional materials, living cells actively generate forces at the molecular scale that change their structure and mechanical properties. This nonequilibrium activity is essential for cellular function, and drives processes such as cell division. Single molecule studies have uncovered the detailed force kinetics of isolated motor proteins in-vitro, however their behavior in-vivo has been elusive due to the complex environment inside the cell. Here, we quantify active forces and intracellular mechanics in living oocytes using in-vivo optical trapping and laser interferometry of endogenous vesicles. We integrate an experimental and theoretical framework to connect mesoscopic measurements of nonequilibrium properties to the underlying molecular- scale force kinetics. Our results show that force generation by myosin-V drives the cytoplasmic-skeleton out-of-equilibrium (at frequencies below 300 Hz) and actively softens the environment. In vivo myosin-V activity generates a force of F ~ 0 . 4 pN, with a power-stroke of length Δx ~ 20 nm and duration τ ~ 300 μs, that drives vesicle motion at vv ~ 320 nm/s. This framework is widely applicable to characterize living cells and other soft active materials.

  9. Assessment of synergistic antibacterial activity of combined biosurfactants revealed by bacterial cell envelop damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sana, Santanu; Datta, Sriparna; Biswas, Dipa; Sengupta, Dipanjan

    2018-02-01

    Besides potential surface activity and some beneficial physical properties, biosurfactants express antibacterial activity. Bacterial cell membrane disrupting ability of rhamnolipid produced by Pseudomonas aeruginosa C2 and a lipopeptide type biosurfactant, BS15 produced by Bacillus stratosphericus A15 was examined against Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 25923 and Escherichia coli K8813. Broth dilution technique was followed to examine minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of both the biosurfactants. The combined effect of rhamnolipid and BS15 against S. aureus and E. coli showed synergistic activity by expressing fractional inhibitory concentration (FIC) index of 0.43 and 0.5. Survival curve of both the bacteria showed bactericidal activity after treating with biosurfactants at their MIC obtained from FIC index study as it killed >90% of initial population. The lesser value of MIC than minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) of the biosurfactants also supported their bactericidal activity against both the bacteria. Membrane permeability against both the bacteria was supported by amplifying protein release, increasing of cell surface hydrophobicity, withholding capacity of crystal violet dye and leakage of intracellular materials. Finally cell membrane disruption was confirmed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). All these experiments expressed synergism and effective bactericidal activity of the combination of rhamnolipid and BS15 by enhancing the bacterial cell membrane permeability. Such effect of the combination of rhamnolipid and BS15 could make them promising alternatives to traditional antibiotic in near future. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Correlations between human mobility and social interaction reveal general activity patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mollgaard, Anders; Lehmann, Sune; Mathiesen, Joachim

    2017-01-01

    A day in the life of a person involves a broad range of activities which are common across many people. Going beyond diurnal cycles, a central question is: to what extent do individuals act according to patterns shared across an entire population? Here we investigate the interplay between different activity types, namely communication, motion, and physical proximity by analyzing data collected from smartphones distributed among 638 individuals. We explore two central questions: Which underlying principles govern the formation of the activity patterns? Are the patterns specific to each individual or shared across the entire population? We find that statistics of the entire population allows us to successfully predict 71% of the activity and 85% of the inactivity involved in communication, mobility, and physical proximity. Surprisingly, individual level statistics only result in marginally better predictions, indicating that a majority of activity patterns are shared across our sample population. Finally, we predict short-term activity patterns using a generalized linear model, which suggests that a simple linear description might be sufficient to explain a wide range of actions, whether they be of social or of physical character.

  11. Receptor activity-independent recruitment of βarrestin2 reveals specific signalling modes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terrillon, Sonia; Bouvier, Michel

    2004-01-01

    The roles of βarrestins in regulating G protein coupling and receptor endocytosis following agonist stimulation of G protein-coupled receptors are well characterised. However, their ability to act on their own as direct modulators or activators of signalling remains poorly characterised. Here, βarrestin2 intrinsic signalling properties were assessed by forcing the recruitment of this accessory protein to vasopressin V1a or V2 receptors independently of agonist-promoted activation of the receptors. Such induction of a stable interaction with βarrestin2 initiated receptor endocytosis leading to intracellular accumulation of the βarrestin/receptor complexes. Interestingly, βarrestin2 association to a single receptor protomer was sufficient to elicit receptor dimer internalisation. In addition to recapitulating βarrestin2 classical actions on receptor trafficking, the receptor activity-independent recruitment of βarrestin2 activated the extracellular signal-regulated kinases. In the latter case, recruitment to the receptor itself was not required since kinase activation could be mediated by βarrestin2 translocation to the plasma membrane in the absence of any interacting receptor. These data demonstrate that βarrestin2 can act as a ‘bonafide' signalling molecule even in the absence of activated receptor. PMID:15385966

  12. Activity patterns of free-ranging koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus revealed by accelerometry.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle A Ryan

    Full Text Available An understanding of koala activity patterns is important for measuring the behavioral response of this species to environmental change, but to date has been limited by the logistical challenges of traditional field methodologies. We addressed this knowledge gap by using tri-axial accelerometer data loggers attached to VHF radio collars to examine activity patterns of adult male and female koalas in a high-density population at Cape Otway, Victoria, Australia. Data were obtained from 27 adult koalas over two 7-d periods during the breeding season: 12 in the early-breeding season in November 2010, and 15 in the late-breeding season in January 2011. Multiple 15 minute observation blocks on each animal were used for validation of activity patterns determined from the accelerometer data loggers. Accelerometry was effective in distinguishing between inactive (sleeping, resting and active (grooming, feeding and moving behaviors. Koalas were more active during the early-breeding season with a higher index of movement (overall dynamic body acceleration [ODBA] for both males and females. Koalas showed a distinct temporal pattern of behavior, with most activity occurring from mid-afternoon to early morning. Accelerometry has potential for examining fine-scale behavior of a wide range of arboreal and terrestrial species.

  13. Activity patterns of free-ranging koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) revealed by accelerometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, Michelle A; Whisson, Desley A; Holland, Greg J; Arnould, John P Y

    2013-01-01

    An understanding of koala activity patterns is important for measuring the behavioral response of this species to environmental change, but to date has been limited by the logistical challenges of traditional field methodologies. We addressed this knowledge gap by using tri-axial accelerometer data loggers attached to VHF radio collars to examine activity patterns of adult male and female koalas in a high-density population at Cape Otway, Victoria, Australia. Data were obtained from 27 adult koalas over two 7-d periods during the breeding season: 12 in the early-breeding season in November 2010, and 15 in the late-breeding season in January 2011. Multiple 15 minute observation blocks on each animal were used for validation of activity patterns determined from the accelerometer data loggers. Accelerometry was effective in distinguishing between inactive (sleeping, resting) and active (grooming, feeding and moving) behaviors. Koalas were more active during the early-breeding season with a higher index of movement (overall dynamic body acceleration [ODBA]) for both males and females. Koalas showed a distinct temporal pattern of behavior, with most activity occurring from mid-afternoon to early morning. Accelerometry has potential for examining fine-scale behavior of a wide range of arboreal and terrestrial species.

  14. Presbycusis Disrupts Spontaneous Activity Revealed by Resting-State Functional MRI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-Chen Chen

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: Presbycusis, age-related hearing loss, is believed to involve neural changes in the central nervous system, which is associated with an increased risk of cognitive impairment. The goal of this study was to determine if presbycusis disrupted spontaneous neural activity in specific brain areas involved in auditory processing, attention and cognitive function using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI approach.Methods: Hearing and resting-state fMRI measurements were obtained from 22 presbycusis patients and 23 age-, sex- and education-matched healthy controls. To identify changes in spontaneous neural activity associated with age-related hearing loss, we compared the amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF and regional homogeneity (ReHo of fMRI signals in presbycusis patients vs. controls and then determined if these changes were linked to clinical measures of presbycusis.Results: Compared with healthy controls, presbycusis patients manifested decreased spontaneous activity mainly in the superior temporal gyrus (STG, parahippocampal gyrus (PHG, precuneus and inferior parietal lobule (IPL as well as increased neural activity in the middle frontal gyrus (MFG, cuneus and postcentral gyrus (PoCG. A significant negative correlation was observed between ALFF/ReHo activity in the STG and average hearing thresholds in presbycusis patients. Increased ALFF/ReHo activity in the MFG was positively correlated with impaired Trail-Making Test B (TMT-B scores, indicative of impaired cognitive function involving the frontal lobe.Conclusions: Presbycusis patients have disrupted spontaneous neural activity reflected by ALFF and ReHo measurements in several brain regions; these changes are associated with specific cognitive performance and speech/language processing. These findings mainly emphasize the crucial role of aberrant resting-state ALFF/ReHo patterns in presbycusis patients and will lead to a better understanding of the

  15. Presbycusis Disrupts Spontaneous Activity Revealed by Resting-State Functional MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yu-Chen; Chen, Huiyou; Jiang, Liang; Bo, Fan; Xu, Jin-Jing; Mao, Cun-Nan; Salvi, Richard; Yin, Xindao; Lu, Guangming; Gu, Jian-Ping

    2018-01-01

    Purpose : Presbycusis, age-related hearing loss, is believed to involve neural changes in the central nervous system, which is associated with an increased risk of cognitive impairment. The goal of this study was to determine if presbycusis disrupted spontaneous neural activity in specific brain areas involved in auditory processing, attention and cognitive function using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) approach. Methods : Hearing and resting-state fMRI measurements were obtained from 22 presbycusis patients and 23 age-, sex- and education-matched healthy controls. To identify changes in spontaneous neural activity associated with age-related hearing loss, we compared the amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF) and regional homogeneity (ReHo) of fMRI signals in presbycusis patients vs. controls and then determined if these changes were linked to clinical measures of presbycusis. Results : Compared with healthy controls, presbycusis patients manifested decreased spontaneous activity mainly in the superior temporal gyrus (STG), parahippocampal gyrus (PHG), precuneus and inferior parietal lobule (IPL) as well as increased neural activity in the middle frontal gyrus (MFG), cuneus and postcentral gyrus (PoCG). A significant negative correlation was observed between ALFF/ReHo activity in the STG and average hearing thresholds in presbycusis patients. Increased ALFF/ReHo activity in the MFG was positively correlated with impaired Trail-Making Test B (TMT-B) scores, indicative of impaired cognitive function involving the frontal lobe. Conclusions : Presbycusis patients have disrupted spontaneous neural activity reflected by ALFF and ReHo measurements in several brain regions; these changes are associated with specific cognitive performance and speech/language processing. These findings mainly emphasize the crucial role of aberrant resting-state ALFF/ReHo patterns in presbycusis patients and will lead to a better understanding of the

  16. How community environment shapes physical activity: perceptions revealed through the PhotoVoice method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belon, Ana Paula; Nieuwendyk, Laura M; Vallianatos, Helen; Nykiforuk, Candace I J

    2014-09-01

    A growing body of evidence shows that community environment plays an important role in individuals' physical activity engagement. However, while attributes of the physical environment are widely investigated, sociocultural, political, and economic aspects of the environment are often neglected. This article helps to fill these knowledge gaps by providing a more comprehensive understanding of multiple dimensions of the community environment relative to physical activity. The purpose of this study was to qualitatively explore how people's experiences and perceptions of their community environments affect their abilities to engage in physical activity. A PhotoVoice method was used to identify barriers to and opportunities for physical activity among residents in four communities in the province of Alberta, Canada, in 2009. After taking pictures, the thirty-five participants shared their perceptions of those opportunities and barriers in their community environments during individual interviews. Using the Analysis Grid for Environments Linked to Obesity (ANGELO) framework, themes emerging from these photo-elicited interviews were organized in four environment types: physical, sociocultural, economic, and political. The data show that themes linked to the physical (56.6%) and sociocultural (31.4%) environments were discussed more frequently than the themes of the economic (5.9%) and political (6.1%) environments. Participants identified nuanced barriers and opportunities for physical activity, which are illustrated by their quotes and photographs. The findings suggest that a myriad of factors from physical, sociocultural, economic, and political environments influence people's abilities to be physically active in their communities. Therefore, adoption of a broad, ecological perspective is needed to address the barriers and build upon the opportunities described by participants to make communities more healthy and active. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights

  17. From Blame to Punishment: Disrupting Prefrontal Cortex Activity Reveals Norm Enforcement Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckholtz, Joshua W; Martin, Justin W; Treadway, Michael T; Jan, Katherine; Zald, David H; Jones, Owen; Marois, René

    2015-09-23

    The social welfare provided by cooperation depends on the enforcement of social norms. Determining blameworthiness and assigning a deserved punishment are two cognitive cornerstones of norm enforcement. Although prior work has implicated the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in norm-based judgments, the relative contribution of this region to blameworthiness and punishment decisions remains poorly understood. Here, we used repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) and fMRI to determine the specific role of DLPFC function in norm-enforcement behavior. DLPFC rTMS reduced punishment for wrongful acts without affecting blameworthiness ratings, and fMRI revealed punishment-selective DLPFC recruitment, suggesting that these two facets of norm-based decision making are neurobiologically dissociable. Finally, we show that DLPFC rTMS affects punishment decision making by altering the integration of information about culpability and harm. Together, these findings reveal a selective, causal role for DLPFC in norm enforcement: representational integration of the distinct information streams used to make punishment decisions. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Genetically encoded proton sensors reveal activity-dependent pH changes in neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Valentino Raimondo

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The regulation of hydrogen ion concentration (pH is fundamental to cell viability, metabolism and enzymatic function. Within the nervous system, the control of pH is also involved in diverse and dynamic processes including development, synaptic transmission and the control of network excitability. As pH affects neuronal activity, and can also itself be altered by neuronal activity, the existence of tools to accurately measure hydrogen ion fluctuations is important for understanding the role pH plays under physiological and pathological conditions. Outside of their use as a marker of synaptic release, genetically encoded pH sensors have not been utilised to study hydrogen ion fluxes associated with network activity. By combining whole-cell patch clamp with simultaneous two-photon or confocal imaging, we quantified the amplitude and time course of neuronal, intracellular, acidic transients evoked by epileptiform activity in two separate in vitro models of temporal lobe epilepsy. In doing so, we demonstrate the suitability of three genetically encoded pH sensors: deGFP4, E2GFP and Cl-sensor for investigating activity-dependent pH changes at the level of single neurons.

  19. Genetically encoded proton sensors reveal activity-dependent pH changes in neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raimondo, Joseph V; Irkle, Agnese; Wefelmeyer, Winnie; Newey, Sarah E; Akerman, Colin J

    2012-01-01

    The regulation of hydrogen ion concentration (pH) is fundamental to cell viability, metabolism, and enzymatic function. Within the nervous system, the control of pH is also involved in diverse and dynamic processes including development, synaptic transmission, and the control of network excitability. As pH affects neuronal activity, and can also itself be altered by neuronal activity, the existence of tools to accurately measure hydrogen ion fluctuations is important for understanding the role pH plays under physiological and pathological conditions. Outside of their use as a marker of synaptic release, genetically encoded pH sensors have not been utilized to study hydrogen ion fluxes associated with network activity. By combining whole-cell patch clamp with simultaneous two-photon or confocal imaging, we quantified the amplitude and time course of neuronal, intracellular, acidic transients evoked by epileptiform activity in two separate in vitro models of temporal lobe epilepsy. In doing so, we demonstrate the suitability of three genetically encoded pH sensors: deGFP4, E(2)GFP, and Cl-sensor for investigating activity-dependent pH changes at the level of single neurons.

  20. Activation of auditory white matter tracts as revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tae, Woo Suk [Kangwon National University, Neuroscience Research Institute, School of Medicine, Chuncheon (Korea, Republic of); Yakunina, Natalia; Nam, Eui-Cheol [Kangwon National University, Neuroscience Research Institute, School of Medicine, Chuncheon (Korea, Republic of); Kangwon National University, Department of Otolaryngology, School of Medicine, Chuncheon, Kangwon-do (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Tae Su [Kangwon National University Hospital, Department of Otolaryngology, Chuncheon (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Sam Soo [Kangwon National University, Neuroscience Research Institute, School of Medicine, Chuncheon (Korea, Republic of); Kangwon National University, Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, Chuncheon (Korea, Republic of)

    2014-07-15

    The ability of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to detect activation in brain white matter (WM) is controversial. In particular, studies on the functional activation of WM tracts in the central auditory system are scarce. We utilized fMRI to assess and characterize the entire auditory WM pathway under robust experimental conditions involving the acquisition of a large number of functional volumes, the application of broadband auditory stimuli of high intensity, and the use of sparse temporal sampling to avoid scanner noise effects and increase signal-to-noise ratio. Nineteen healthy volunteers were subjected to broadband white noise in a block paradigm; each run had four sound-on/off alternations and was repeated nine times for each subject. Sparse sampling (TR = 8 s) was used. In addition to traditional gray matter (GM) auditory center activation, WM activation was detected in the isthmus and midbody of the corpus callosum (CC), tapetum, auditory radiation, lateral lemniscus, and decussation of the superior cerebellar peduncles. At the individual level, 13 of 19 subjects (68 %) had CC activation. Callosal WM exhibited a temporal delay of approximately 8 s in response to the stimulation compared with GM. These findings suggest that direct evaluation of the entire functional network of the central auditory system may be possible using fMRI, which may aid in understanding the neurophysiological basis of the central auditory system and in developing treatment strategies for various central auditory disorders. (orig.)

  1. Activation of auditory white matter tracts as revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tae, Woo Suk; Yakunina, Natalia; Nam, Eui-Cheol; Kim, Tae Su; Kim, Sam Soo

    2014-01-01

    The ability of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to detect activation in brain white matter (WM) is controversial. In particular, studies on the functional activation of WM tracts in the central auditory system are scarce. We utilized fMRI to assess and characterize the entire auditory WM pathway under robust experimental conditions involving the acquisition of a large number of functional volumes, the application of broadband auditory stimuli of high intensity, and the use of sparse temporal sampling to avoid scanner noise effects and increase signal-to-noise ratio. Nineteen healthy volunteers were subjected to broadband white noise in a block paradigm; each run had four sound-on/off alternations and was repeated nine times for each subject. Sparse sampling (TR = 8 s) was used. In addition to traditional gray matter (GM) auditory center activation, WM activation was detected in the isthmus and midbody of the corpus callosum (CC), tapetum, auditory radiation, lateral lemniscus, and decussation of the superior cerebellar peduncles. At the individual level, 13 of 19 subjects (68 %) had CC activation. Callosal WM exhibited a temporal delay of approximately 8 s in response to the stimulation compared with GM. These findings suggest that direct evaluation of the entire functional network of the central auditory system may be possible using fMRI, which may aid in understanding the neurophysiological basis of the central auditory system and in developing treatment strategies for various central auditory disorders. (orig.)

  2. Mutational and structural analyses of Caldanaerobius polysaccharolyticus Man5B reveal novel active site residues for family 5 glycoside hydrolases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyama, Takuji; Schmitz, George E; Dodd, Dylan; Han, Yejun; Burnett, Alanna; Nagasawa, Naoko; Mackie, Roderick I; Nakamura, Haruki; Morikawa, Kosuke; Cann, Isaac

    2013-01-01

    CpMan5B is a glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 5 enzyme exhibiting both β-1,4-mannosidic and β-1,4-glucosidic cleavage activities. To provide insight into the amino acid residues that contribute to catalysis and substrate specificity, we solved the structure of CpMan5B at 1.6 Å resolution. The structure revealed several active site residues (Y12, N92 and R196) in CpMan5B that are not present in the active sites of other structurally resolved GH5 enzymes. Residue R196 in GH5 enzymes is thought to be strictly conserved as a histidine that participates in an electron relay network with the catalytic glutamates, but we show that an arginine fulfills a functionally equivalent role and is found at this position in every enzyme in subfamily GH5_36, which includes CpMan5B. Residue N92 is required for full enzymatic activity and forms a novel bridge over the active site that is absent in other family 5 structures. Our data also reveal a role of Y12 in establishing the substrate preference for CpMan5B. Using these molecular determinants as a probe allowed us to identify Man5D from Caldicellulosiruptor bescii as a mannanase with minor endo-glucanase activity.

  3. Mutational and structural analyses of Caldanaerobius polysaccharolyticus Man5B reveal novel active site residues for family 5 glycoside hydrolases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takuji Oyama

    Full Text Available CpMan5B is a glycoside hydrolase (GH family 5 enzyme exhibiting both β-1,4-mannosidic and β-1,4-glucosidic cleavage activities. To provide insight into the amino acid residues that contribute to catalysis and substrate specificity, we solved the structure of CpMan5B at 1.6 Å resolution. The structure revealed several active site residues (Y12, N92 and R196 in CpMan5B that are not present in the active sites of other structurally resolved GH5 enzymes. Residue R196 in GH5 enzymes is thought to be strictly conserved as a histidine that participates in an electron relay network with the catalytic glutamates, but we show that an arginine fulfills a functionally equivalent role and is found at this position in every enzyme in subfamily GH5_36, which includes CpMan5B. Residue N92 is required for full enzymatic activity and forms a novel bridge over the active site that is absent in other family 5 structures. Our data also reveal a role of Y12 in establishing the substrate preference for CpMan5B. Using these molecular determinants as a probe allowed us to identify Man5D from Caldicellulosiruptor bescii as a mannanase with minor endo-glucanase activity.

  4. Connectome-harmonic decomposition of human brain activity reveals dynamical repertoire re-organization under LSD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atasoy, Selen; Roseman, Leor; Kaelen, Mendel; Kringelbach, Morten L; Deco, Gustavo; Carhart-Harris, Robin L

    2017-12-15

    Recent studies have started to elucidate the effects of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) on the human brain but the underlying dynamics are not yet fully understood. Here we used 'connectome-harmonic decomposition', a novel method to investigate the dynamical changes in brain states. We found that LSD alters the energy and the power of individual harmonic brain states in a frequency-selective manner. Remarkably, this leads to an expansion of the repertoire of active brain states, suggestive of a general re-organization of brain dynamics given the non-random increase in co-activation across frequencies. Interestingly, the frequency distribution of the active repertoire of brain states under LSD closely follows power-laws indicating a re-organization of the dynamics at the edge of criticality. Beyond the present findings, these methods open up for a better understanding of the complex brain dynamics in health and disease.

  5. Spontaneous cortical activity reveals hallmarks of an optimal internal model of the environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berkes, Pietro; Orbán, Gergo; Lengyel, Máté; Fiser, József

    2011-01-07

    The brain maintains internal models of its environment to interpret sensory inputs and to prepare actions. Although behavioral studies have demonstrated that these internal models are optimally adapted to the statistics of the environment, the neural underpinning of this adaptation is unknown. Using a Bayesian model of sensory cortical processing, we related stimulus-evoked and spontaneous neural activities to inferences and prior expectations in an internal model and predicted that they should match if the model is statistically optimal. To test this prediction, we analyzed visual cortical activity of awake ferrets during development. Similarity between spontaneous and evoked activities increased with age and was specific to responses evoked by natural scenes. This demonstrates the progressive adaptation of internal models to the statistics of natural stimuli at the neural level.

  6. Structures of apicomplexan calcium-dependent protein kinases reveal mechanism of activation by calcium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wernimont, Amy K; Artz, Jennifer D.; Jr, Patrick Finerty; Lin, Yu-Hui; Amani, Mehrnaz; Allali-Hassani, Abdellah; Senisterra, Guillermo; Vedadi, Masoud; Tempel, Wolfram; Mackenzie, Farrell; Chau, Irene; Lourido, Sebastian; Sibley, L. David; Hui, Raymond (Toronto); (WU-MED)

    2010-09-21

    Calcium-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) have pivotal roles in the calcium-signaling pathway in plants, ciliates and apicomplexan parasites and comprise a calmodulin-dependent kinase (CaMK)-like kinase domain regulated by a calcium-binding domain in the C terminus. To understand this intramolecular mechanism of activation, we solved the structures of the autoinhibited (apo) and activated (calcium-bound) conformations of CDPKs from the apicomplexan parasites Toxoplasma gondii and Cryptosporidium parvum. In the apo form, the C-terminal CDPK activation domain (CAD) resembles a calmodulin protein with an unexpected long helix in the N terminus that inhibits the kinase domain in the same manner as CaMKII. Calcium binding triggers the reorganization of the CAD into a highly intricate fold, leading to its relocation around the base of the kinase domain to a site remote from the substrate binding site. This large conformational change constitutes a distinct mechanism in calcium signal-transduction pathways.

  7. Structure of TSA2 reveals novel features of the active-site loop of peroxiredoxins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Maja Holch; Kidmose, Rune Thomas; Jenner, Lasse Bohl

    2016-01-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae TSA2 belongs to the family of typical 2-Cys peroxiredoxins, a ubiquitously expressed family of redox-active enzymes that utilize a conserved peroxidatic cysteine to reduce peroxides. Typical 2-Cys peroxiredoxins have been shown to be involved in protection against oxidative...... stress and in hydrogen peroxide signalling. Furthermore, several 2-Cys peroxiredoxins, including S. cerevisiae TSA1 and TSA2, are able to switch to chaperone activity upon hyperoxidation of their peroxidatic cysteine. This makes the sensitivity to hyperoxidation of the peroxidatic cysteine a very....... This requires a local unfolding of the active site and the C-terminus. The balance between the fully folded and locally unfolded conformations is of key importance for the reactivity and sensitivity to hyperoxidation of the different peroxiredoxins. Here, the structure of a C48S mutant of TSA2 from S...

  8. Alpha-Band Activity Reveals Spontaneous Representations of Spatial Position in Visual Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Joshua J; Bsales, Emma M; Jaffe, Russell J; Awh, Edward

    2017-10-23

    An emerging view suggests that spatial position is an integral component of working memory (WM), such that non-spatial features are bound to locations regardless of whether space is relevant [1, 2]. For instance, past work has shown that stimulus position is spontaneously remembered when non-spatial features are stored. Item recognition is enhanced when memoranda appear at the same location where they were encoded [3-5], and accessing non-spatial information elicits shifts of spatial attention to the original position of the stimulus [6, 7]. However, these findings do not establish that a persistent, active representation of stimulus position is maintained in WM because similar effects have also been documented following storage in long-term memory [8, 9]. Here we show that the spatial position of the memorandum is actively coded by persistent neural activity during a non-spatial WM task. We used a spatial encoding model in conjunction with electroencephalogram (EEG) measurements of oscillatory alpha-band (8-12 Hz) activity to track active representations of spatial position. The position of the stimulus varied trial to trial but was wholly irrelevant to the tasks. We nevertheless observed active neural representations of the original stimulus position that persisted throughout the retention interval. Further experiments established that these spatial representations are dependent on the volitional storage of non-spatial features rather than being a lingering effect of sensory energy or initial encoding demands. These findings provide strong evidence that online spatial representations are spontaneously maintained in WM-regardless of task relevance-during the storage of non-spatial features. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Determination of the physiological 2:2 TLR5:flagellin activation stoichiometry revealed by the activity of a fusion receptor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ivičak-Kocjan, Karolina; Panter, Gabriela; Benčina, Mojca; Jerala, Roman

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: •The chimeric protein fusing flagellin to the TLR5 ectodomain is constitutively active. •Mutation P736H within the BB-loop of TLR5 TIR domain renders the receptor inactive. •The R90D mutation in flagellin inactivated autoactivation of the chimeric protein. •The 2:2 stoichiometry of the TLR5:flagellin complex is physiologically relevant. -- Abstract: Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5) recognizes flagellin of most flagellated bacteria, enabling activation of the MyD88-dependent signaling pathway. The recently published crystal structure of a truncated zebrafish TLR5 ectodomain in complex with an inactive flagellin fragment indicated binding of two flagellin molecules to a TLR5 homodimer, however this complex did not dimerize in solution. In the present study, we aimed to determine the physiological stoichiometry of TLR5:flagellin activation by the use of a chimeric protein composed of an active flagellin fragment linked to the N-terminus of human TLR5 (SF-TLR5). This construct was constitutively active. Inactivation by the R90D mutation within flagellin demonstrated that autoactivation of the chimeric protein depended solely on the specific interaction between TLR5 and flagellin. Addition of wild-type hTLR5 substantially lowered autoactivation of SF-TLR5 in a concentration dependent manner, an effect which was reversible by the addition of exogenous Salmonella typhimurium flagellin, indicating the biological activity of a TLR5:flagellin complex with a 2:2 stoichiometry. These results, in addition to the combinations of inactive P736H mutation within the BB-loop of the TIR domain of TLR5 and SF-TLR5, further confirm the mechanism of TLR5 activation

  10. Determination of the physiological 2:2 TLR5:flagellin activation stoichiometry revealed by the activity of a fusion receptor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ivičak-Kocjan, Karolina; Panter, Gabriela; Benčina, Mojca [Laboratory of Biotechnology, National Institute of Chemistry, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); The Centre of Excellence EN-FIST, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); Jerala, Roman, E-mail: roman.jerala@ki.si [Laboratory of Biotechnology, National Institute of Chemistry, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); The Centre of Excellence EN-FIST, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia); The Faculty of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, University of Ljubljana, 1000 Ljubljana (Slovenia)

    2013-05-24

    Highlights: •The chimeric protein fusing flagellin to the TLR5 ectodomain is constitutively active. •Mutation P736H within the BB-loop of TLR5 TIR domain renders the receptor inactive. •The R90D mutation in flagellin inactivated autoactivation of the chimeric protein. •The 2:2 stoichiometry of the TLR5:flagellin complex is physiologically relevant. -- Abstract: Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5) recognizes flagellin of most flagellated bacteria, enabling activation of the MyD88-dependent signaling pathway. The recently published crystal structure of a truncated zebrafish TLR5 ectodomain in complex with an inactive flagellin fragment indicated binding of two flagellin molecules to a TLR5 homodimer, however this complex did not dimerize in solution. In the present study, we aimed to determine the physiological stoichiometry of TLR5:flagellin activation by the use of a chimeric protein composed of an active flagellin fragment linked to the N-terminus of human TLR5 (SF-TLR5). This construct was constitutively active. Inactivation by the R90D mutation within flagellin demonstrated that autoactivation of the chimeric protein depended solely on the specific interaction between TLR5 and flagellin. Addition of wild-type hTLR5 substantially lowered autoactivation of SF-TLR5 in a concentration dependent manner, an effect which was reversible by the addition of exogenous Salmonella typhimurium flagellin, indicating the biological activity of a TLR5:flagellin complex with a 2:2 stoichiometry. These results, in addition to the combinations of inactive P736H mutation within the BB-loop of the TIR domain of TLR5 and SF-TLR5, further confirm the mechanism of TLR5 activation.

  11. Large-scale transcriptome data reveals transcriptional activity of fission yeast LTR retrotransposons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mourier, Tobias; Willerslev, Eske

    2010-01-01

    of transcriptional activity are observed from both strands of solitary LTR sequences. Transcriptome data collected during meiosis suggests that transcription of solitary LTRs is correlated with the transcription of nearby protein-coding genes. CONCLUSIONS: Presumably, the host organism negatively regulates...

  12. Correlations between human mobility and social interaction reveal general activity patterns

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mollgaard, Anders; Jørgensen, Sune Lehmann; Mathiesen, Joachim

    2017-01-01

    A day in the life of a person involves a broad range of activities which are common across many people. Going beyond diurnal cycles, a central question is: to what extent do individuals act according to patterns shared across an entire population? Here we investigate the interplay between differe...... they be of social or of physical character....

  13. Altered spontaneous activity in anisometropic amblyopia subjects: revealed by resting-state FMRI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoming Lin

    Full Text Available Amblyopia, also known as lazy eye, usually occurs during early childhood and results in poor or blurred vision. Recent neuroimaging studies have found cortical structural/functional abnormalities in amblyopia. However, until now, it was still not known whether the spontaneous activity of the brain changes in amblyopia subjects. In the present study, regional homogeneity (ReHo, a measure of the homogeneity of functional magnetic resonance imaging signals, was used for the first time to investigate changes in resting-state local spontaneous brain activity in individuals with anisometropic amblyopia. Compared with age- and gender-matched subjects with normal vision, the anisometropic amblyopia subjects showed decreased ReHo of spontaneous brain activity in the right precuneus, the left medial prefrontal cortex, the left inferior frontal gyrus, and the left cerebellum, and increased ReHo of spontaneous brain activity was found in the bilateral conjunction area of the postcentral and precentral gyri, the left paracentral lobule, the left superior temporal gyrus, the left fusiform gyrus, the conjunction area of the right insula, putamen and the right middle occipital gyrus. The observed decreases in ReHo may reflect decreased visuo-motor processing ability, and the increases in ReHo in the somatosensory cortices, the motor areas and the auditory area may indicate compensatory plasticity in amblyopia.

  14. Xenobiotics and the Human Gut Microbiome: Metatranscriptomics Reveal the Active Players

    OpenAIRE

    Ursell, Luke K.; Knight, Rob

    2013-01-01

    The human gut microbiome plays an important role in the metabolism of xenobiotics. In a recent issue of Cell, Maurice et al. identify the active members of the gut microbiome and show how gene expression profiles change within the gut microbial community in response to antibiotics and host-targeted xenobiotics.

  15. Comparison of Cytotoxic Activity in Leukemic Lineages Reveals Important Features of β-Hairpin Antimicrobial Peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buri, Marcus V; Torquato, Heron F Vieira; Barros, Carlos Castilho; Ide, Jaime S; Miranda, Antonio; Paredes-Gamero, Edgar J

    2017-07-01

    Several reports described different modes of cell death triggered by antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) due to direct effects on membrane disruption, and more recently by apoptosis and necrosis-like patterns. Cytotoxic curves of four β-hairpin AMPs (gomesin, protegrin, tachyplesin, and polyphemusin) were obtained from several human leukemic lineages and normal monocytes and Two cell lines were then selected based on their cytotoxic sensitivity. One was sensitive to AMPs (K562) and the other resistant (KG-1) and their effect compared between these lineages. Thus, these lineages were chosen to further investigate biological features related with their cytotoxicities to AMPs. Stimulation with AMPs produced cell death, with activation of caspase-3, in K562 lineage. Increase on the fluidity of plasmatic membrane by reducing cholesterol potentiated cytotoxicity of AMPs in both lineages. Quantification of internal and external gomesin binding to the cellular membrane of both K562 and KG-1 cells showed that more peptide is accumulated inside of K562 cells. Additionally, evaluation of multi-drug resistant pumps activity showed that KG-1 has more activity than K562 lineage. A comparison of intrinsic gene patterns showed great differences between K562 and KG-1, but stimulation with gomesin promoted few changes in gene expression patterns. Differences in internalization process through the plasma membrane, multidrug resistance pumps activity, and gene expression pattern are important features to AMPs regulated cell death. J. Cell. Biochem. 118: 1764-1773, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Transcriptome profiling reveals bisphenol A alternatives activate estrogen receptor alpha in human breast cancer cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plasticizers with estrogenic activity, such as bisphenol A (BPA), have potential adverse health effects in humans. Due to mounting evidence of these health effects, BPA is being phased out and replaced by other bisphenol variants in “BPA-free” products. We have compared estrogeni...

  17. Toll-like receptor activation reveals developmental reorganization and unmasks responder subsets of microglia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheffel, Joerg; Regen, Tommy; Van Rossum, Denise; Seifert, Stefanie; Ribes, Sandra; Nau, Roland; Parsa, Roham; Harris, Robert A.; Boddeke, Hendrikus W. G. M.; Chuang, Han-Ning; Pukrop, Tobias; Wessels, Johannes T.; Juergens, Tanja; Merkler, Doron; Brueck, Wolfgang; Schnaars, Mareike; Simons, Mikael; Kettenmann, Helmut; Hanisch, Uwe-Karsten

    2012-01-01

    The sentinel and immune functions of microglia require rapid and appropriate reactions to infection and damage. Their Toll-like receptors (TLRs) sense both as threats. However, whether activated microglia mount uniform responses or whether subsets conduct selective tasks is unknown. We demonstrate

  18. Near-infrared spectroscopy can reveal increases in brain activity related to animal-assisted therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morita, Yuka; Ebara, Fumio; Morita, Yoshimitsu; Horikawa, Etsuo

    2017-08-01

    [Purpose] Previous studies have indicated that animal-assisted therapy can promote recovery of psychological, social, and physiological function in mental disorders. This study was designed as a pilot evaluation of the use of near-infrared spectroscopy to objectively identify changes in brain activity that could mediate the effect of animal-assisted therapy. [Subjects and Methods] The participants were 20 healthy students (10 males and 10 females; age 19-21 years) of the Faculty of Agriculture, Saga University. Participants were shown a picture of a Tokara goat or shack (control) while prefrontal cortical oxygenated haemoglobin levels (representing neural activity) were measured by near-infrared spectroscopy. [Results] The prefrontal cortical near-infrared spectroscopy signal was significantly higher during viewing of the animal picture than during a rest condition or during viewing of the control picture. [Conclusion] Our results suggest that near-infrared spectroscopy can be used to objectively identify brain activity changes during human mentation regarding animals; furthermore, these preliminary results suggest the efficacy of animal-assisted therapy could be related to increased activation of the prefrontal cortex.

  19. Functional and evolutionary characterization of Ohr proteins in eukaryotes reveals many active homologs among pathogenic fungi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D.A. Meireles

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Ohr and OsmC proteins comprise two subfamilies within a large group of proteins that display Cys-based, thiol dependent peroxidase activity. These proteins were previously thought to be restricted to prokaryotes, but we show here, using iterated sequence searches, that Ohr/OsmC homologs are also present in 217 species of eukaryotes with a massive presence in Fungi (186 species. Many of these eukaryotic Ohr proteins possess an N-terminal extension that is predicted to target them to mitochondria. We obtained recombinant proteins for four eukaryotic members of the Ohr/OsmC family and three of them displayed lipoyl peroxidase activity. Further functional and biochemical characterization of the Ohr homologs from the ascomycete fungus Mycosphaerella fijiensis Mf_1 (MfOhr, the causative agent of Black Sigatoka disease in banana plants, was pursued. Similarly to what has been observed for the bacterial proteins, we found that: (i the peroxidase activity of MfOhr was supported by DTT or dihydrolipoamide (dithiols, but not by β-mercaptoethanol or GSH (monothiols, even in large excess; (ii MfOhr displayed preference for organic hydroperoxides (CuOOH and tBOOH over hydrogen peroxide; (iii MfOhr presented extraordinary reactivity towards linoleic acid hydroperoxides (k=3.18 (±2.13×108 M−1 s−1. Both Cys87 and Cys154 were essential to the peroxidase activity, since single mutants for each Cys residue presented no activity and no formation of intramolecular disulfide bond upon treatment with hydroperoxides. The pKa value of the Cysp residue was determined as 5.7±0.1 by a monobromobimane alkylation method. Therefore, eukaryotic Ohr peroxidases share several biochemical features with prokaryotic orthologues and are preferentially located in mitochondria. Keywords: Ohr/OsmC, Thiol-dependent peroxidases, Phylogeny

  20. Functional and evolutionary characterization of Ohr proteins in eukaryotes reveals many active homologs among pathogenic fungi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meireles, D A; Domingos, R M; Gaiarsa, J W; Ragnoni, E G; Bannitz-Fernandes, R; da Silva Neto, J F; de Souza, R F; Netto, L E S

    2017-08-01

    Ohr and OsmC proteins comprise two subfamilies within a large group of proteins that display Cys-based, thiol dependent peroxidase activity. These proteins were previously thought to be restricted to prokaryotes, but we show here, using iterated sequence searches, that Ohr/OsmC homologs are also present in 217 species of eukaryotes with a massive presence in Fungi (186 species). Many of these eukaryotic Ohr proteins possess an N-terminal extension that is predicted to target them to mitochondria. We obtained recombinant proteins for four eukaryotic members of the Ohr/OsmC family and three of them displayed lipoyl peroxidase activity. Further functional and biochemical characterization of the Ohr homologs from the ascomycete fungus Mycosphaerella fijiensis Mf_1 (MfOhr), the causative agent of Black Sigatoka disease in banana plants, was pursued. Similarly to what has been observed for the bacterial proteins, we found that: (i) the peroxidase activity of MfOhr was supported by DTT or dihydrolipoamide (dithiols), but not by β-mercaptoethanol or GSH (monothiols), even in large excess; (ii) MfOhr displayed preference for organic hydroperoxides (CuOOH and tBOOH) over hydrogen peroxide; (iii) MfOhr presented extraordinary reactivity towards linoleic acid hydroperoxides (k=3.18 (±2.13)×10 8 M -1 s -1 ). Both Cys 87 and Cys 154 were essential to the peroxidase activity, since single mutants for each Cys residue presented no activity and no formation of intramolecular disulfide bond upon treatment with hydroperoxides. The pK a value of the Cys p residue was determined as 5.7±0.1 by a monobromobimane alkylation method. Therefore, eukaryotic Ohr peroxidases share several biochemical features with prokaryotic orthologues and are preferentially located in mitochondria. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  1. The spatiotemporal pattern of Src activation at lipid rafts revealed by diffusion-corrected FRET imaging.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaoying Lu

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Genetically encoded biosensors based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET have been widely applied to visualize the molecular activity in live cells with high spatiotemporal resolution. However, the rapid diffusion of biosensor proteins hinders a precise reconstruction of the actual molecular activation map. Based on fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP experiments, we have developed a finite element (FE method to analyze, simulate, and subtract the diffusion effect of mobile biosensors. This method has been applied to analyze the mobility of Src FRET biosensors engineered to reside at different subcompartments in live cells. The results indicate that the Src biosensor located in the cytoplasm moves 4-8 folds faster (0.93+/-0.06 microm(2/sec than those anchored on different compartments in plasma membrane (at lipid raft: 0.11+/-0.01 microm(2/sec and outside: 0.18+/-0.02 microm(2/sec. The mobility of biosensor at lipid rafts is slower than that outside of lipid rafts and is dominated by two-dimensional diffusion. When this diffusion effect was subtracted from the FRET ratio images, high Src activity at lipid rafts was observed at clustered regions proximal to the cell periphery, which remained relatively stationary upon epidermal growth factor (EGF stimulation. This result suggests that EGF induced a Src activation at lipid rafts with well-coordinated spatiotemporal patterns. Our FE-based method also provides an integrated platform of image analysis for studying molecular mobility and reconstructing the spatiotemporal activation maps of signaling molecules in live cells.

  2. Quantitative Proteomics Reveals Temporal Proteomic Changes in Signaling Pathways during BV2 Mouse Microglial Cell Activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woo, Jongmin; Han, Dohyun; Wang, Joseph Injae; Park, Joonho; Kim, Hyunsoo; Kim, Youngsoo

    2017-09-01

    The development of systematic proteomic quantification techniques in systems biology research has enabled one to perform an in-depth analysis of cellular systems. We have developed a systematic proteomic approach that encompasses the spectrum from global to targeted analysis on a single platform. We have applied this technique to an activated microglia cell system to examine changes in the intracellular and extracellular proteomes. Microglia become activated when their homeostatic microenvironment is disrupted. There are varying degrees of microglial activation, and we chose to focus on the proinflammatory reactive state that is induced by exposure to such stimuli as lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and interferon-gamma (IFN-γ). Using an improved shotgun proteomics approach, we identified 5497 proteins in the whole-cell proteome and 4938 proteins in the secretome that were associated with the activation of BV2 mouse microglia by LPS or IFN-γ. Of the differentially expressed proteins in stimulated microglia, we classified pathways that were related to immune-inflammatory responses and metabolism. Our label-free parallel reaction monitoring (PRM) approach made it possible to comprehensively measure the hyper-multiplex quantitative value of each protein by high-resolution mass spectrometry. Over 450 peptides that corresponded to pathway proteins and direct or indirect interactors via the STRING database were quantified by label-free PRM in a single run. Moreover, we performed a longitudinal quantification of secreted proteins during microglial activation, in which neurotoxic molecules that mediate neuronal cell loss in the brain are released. These data suggest that latent pathways that are associated with neurodegenerative diseases can be discovered by constructing and analyzing a pathway network model of proteins. Furthermore, this systematic quantification platform has tremendous potential for applications in large-scale targeted analyses. The proteomics data for

  3. Multichannel brain recordings in behaving Drosophila reveal oscillatory activity and local coherence in response to sensory stimulation and circuit activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulk, Angelique C.; Zhou, Yanqiong; Stratton, Peter; Liu, Li

    2013-01-01

    Neural networks in vertebrates exhibit endogenous oscillations that have been associated with functions ranging from sensory processing to locomotion. It remains unclear whether oscillations may play a similar role in the insect brain. We describe a novel “whole brain” readout for Drosophila melanogaster using a simple multichannel recording preparation to study electrical activity across the brain of flies exposed to different sensory stimuli. We recorded local field potential (LFP) activity from >2,000 registered recording sites across the fly brain in >200 wild-type and transgenic animals to uncover specific LFP frequency bands that correlate with: 1) brain region; 2) sensory modality (olfactory, visual, or mechanosensory); and 3) activity in specific neural circuits. We found endogenous and stimulus-specific oscillations throughout the fly brain. Central (higher-order) brain regions exhibited sensory modality-specific increases in power within narrow frequency bands. Conversely, in sensory brain regions such as the optic or antennal lobes, LFP coherence, rather than power, best defined sensory responses across modalities. By transiently activating specific circuits via expression of TrpA1, we found that several circuits in the fly brain modulate LFP power and coherence across brain regions and frequency domains. However, activation of a neuromodulatory octopaminergic circuit specifically increased neuronal coherence in the optic lobes during visual stimulation while decreasing coherence in central brain regions. Our multichannel recording and brain registration approach provides an effective way to track activity simultaneously across the fly brain in vivo, allowing investigation of functional roles for oscillations in processing sensory stimuli and modulating behavior. PMID:23864378

  4. Multichannel brain recordings in behaving Drosophila reveal oscillatory activity and local coherence in response to sensory stimulation and circuit activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulk, Angelique C; Zhou, Yanqiong; Stratton, Peter; Liu, Li; van Swinderen, Bruno

    2013-10-01

    Neural networks in vertebrates exhibit endogenous oscillations that have been associated with functions ranging from sensory processing to locomotion. It remains unclear whether oscillations may play a similar role in the insect brain. We describe a novel "whole brain" readout for Drosophila melanogaster using a simple multichannel recording preparation to study electrical activity across the brain of flies exposed to different sensory stimuli. We recorded local field potential (LFP) activity from >2,000 registered recording sites across the fly brain in >200 wild-type and transgenic animals to uncover specific LFP frequency bands that correlate with: 1) brain region; 2) sensory modality (olfactory, visual, or mechanosensory); and 3) activity in specific neural circuits. We found endogenous and stimulus-specific oscillations throughout the fly brain. Central (higher-order) brain regions exhibited sensory modality-specific increases in power within narrow frequency bands. Conversely, in sensory brain regions such as the optic or antennal lobes, LFP coherence, rather than power, best defined sensory responses across modalities. By transiently activating specific circuits via expression of TrpA1, we found that several circuits in the fly brain modulate LFP power and coherence across brain regions and frequency domains. However, activation of a neuromodulatory octopaminergic circuit specifically increased neuronal coherence in the optic lobes during visual stimulation while decreasing coherence in central brain regions. Our multichannel recording and brain registration approach provides an effective way to track activity simultaneously across the fly brain in vivo, allowing investigation of functional roles for oscillations in processing sensory stimuli and modulating behavior.

  5. Uncoupling of dynamin polymerization and GTPase activity revealed by the conformation-specific nanobody dynab.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galli, Valentina; Sebastian, Rafael; Moutel, Sandrine; Ecard, Jason; Perez, Franck; Roux, Aurélien

    2017-10-12

    Dynamin is a large GTPase that forms a helical collar at the neck of endocytic pits, and catalyzes membrane fission (Schmid and Frolov, 2011; Ferguson and De Camilli, 2012). Dynamin fission reaction is strictly dependent on GTP hydrolysis, but how fission is mediated is still debated (Antonny et al., 2016): GTP energy could be spent in membrane constriction required for fission, or in disassembly of the dynamin polymer to trigger fission. To follow dynamin GTP hydrolysis at endocytic pits, we generated a conformation-specific nanobody called dynab, that binds preferentially to the GTP hydrolytic state of dynamin-1. Dynab allowed us to follow the GTPase activity of dynamin-1 in real-time. We show that in fibroblasts, dynamin GTP hydrolysis occurs as stochastic bursts, which are randomly distributed relatively to the peak of dynamin assembly. Thus, dynamin disassembly is not coupled to GTPase activity, supporting that the GTP energy is primarily spent in constriction.

  6. Synthesis of Isomeric Phosphoubiquitin Chains Reveals that Phosphorylation Controls Deubiquitinase Activity and Specificity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Huguenin-Dezot

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Ubiquitin is post-translationally modified by phosphorylation at several sites, but the consequences of these modifications are largely unknown. Here, we synthesize multi-milligram quantities of ubiquitin phosphorylated at serine 20, serine 57, and serine 65 via genetic code expansion. We use these phosphoubiquitins for the enzymatic assembly of 20 isomeric phosphoubiquitin dimers, with different sites of isopeptide linkage and/or phosphorylation. We discover that phosphorylation of serine 20 on ubiquitin converts UBE3C from a dual-specificity E3 ligase into a ligase that primarily synthesizes K48 chains. We profile the activity of 31 deubiquitinases on the isomeric phosphoubiquitin dimers in 837 reactions, and we discover that phosphorylation at distinct sites in ubiquitin can activate or repress cleavage of a particular linkage by deubiquitinases and that phosphorylation at a single site in ubiquitin can control the specificity of deubiquitinases for distinct ubiquitin linkages.

  7. Crystal Structure of Ripk4 Reveals Dimerization-Dependent Kinase Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Christine S; Oberbeck, Nina; Hsiao, Yi-Chun; Liu, Peter; Johnson, Adam R; Dixit, Vishva M; Hymowitz, Sarah G

    2018-05-01

    Receptor-interacting protein kinase 4 (RIPK4) is a highly conserved regulator of epidermal differentiation. Members of the RIPK family possess a common kinase domain as well as unique accessory domains that likely dictate subcellular localization and substrate preferences. Mutations in human RIPK4 manifest as Bartsocas-Papas syndrome (BPS), a genetic disorder characterized by severe craniofacial and limb abnormalities. We describe the structure of the murine Ripk4 (MmRipk4) kinase domain, in ATP- and inhibitor-bound forms. The crystallographic dimer of MmRipk4 is similar to those of RIPK2 and BRAF, and we show that the intact dimeric entity is required for MmRipk4 catalytic activity through a series of engineered mutations and cell-based assays. We also assess the impact of BPS mutations on protein structure and activity to elucidate the molecular origins of the disease. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Rhythmic Components in Extracranial Brain Signals Reveal Multifaceted Task Modulation of Overlapping Neuronal Activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roemer van der Meij

    Full Text Available Oscillatory neuronal activity is implicated in many cognitive functions, and its phase coupling between sensors may reflect networks of communicating neuronal populations. Oscillatory activity is often studied using extracranial recordings and compared between experimental conditions. This is challenging, because there is overlap between sensor-level activity generated by different sources, and this can obscure differential experimental modulations of these sources. Additionally, in extracranial data, sensor-level phase coupling not only reflects communicating populations, but can also be generated by a current dipole, whose sensor-level phase coupling does not reflect source-level interactions. We present a novel method, which is capable of separating and characterizing sources on the basis of their phase coupling patterns as a function of space, frequency and time (trials. Importantly, this method depends on a plausible model of a neurobiological rhythm. We present this model and an accompanying analysis pipeline. Next, we demonstrate our approach, using magnetoencephalographic (MEG recordings during a cued tactile detection task as a case study. We show that the extracted components have overlapping spatial maps and frequency content, which are difficult to resolve using conventional pairwise measures. Because our decomposition also provides trial loadings, components can be readily contrasted between experimental conditions. Strikingly, we observed heterogeneity in alpha and beta sources with respect to whether their activity was suppressed or enhanced as a function of attention and performance, and this happened both in task relevant and irrelevant regions. This heterogeneity contrasts with the common view that alpha and beta amplitude over sensory areas are always negatively related to attention and performance.

  9. Factor analysis of regional brain activation in bipolar and healthy individuals reveals a consistent modular structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleck, David E; Welge, Jeffrey A; Eliassen, James C; Adler, Caleb M; DelBello, Melissa P; Strakowski, Stephen M

    2018-07-01

    The neurophysiological substrates of cognition and emotion, as seen with fMRI, are generally explained using modular structures. The present study was designed to probe the modular structure of cognitive-emotional processing in bipolar and healthy individuals using factor analysis and compare the results with current conceptions of the neurophysiology of bipolar disorder. Exploratory factor analysis was used to assess patterns of covariation among brain regions-of-interest activated during the Continuous Performance Task with Emotional and Neutral Distractors in healthy and bipolar individuals without a priori constraints on the number or composition of latent factors. Results indicated a common cognitive-emotional network consisting of prefrontal, medial temporal, limbic, parietal, anterior cingulate and posterior cingulate modules. However, reduced brain activation to emotional stimuli in the frontal, medial temporal and limbic modules was apparent in the bipolar relative to the healthy group, potentially accounting for emotional dysregulation in bipolar disorder. This study is limited by a relatively small sample size recruited at a single site. The results have yet to be validated on a larger independent sample. Although the modular structure of cognitive-emotional processing is similar in bipolar and healthy individuals, activation in response to emotional/neutral cues varies. These findings are not only consistent with recent conceptions of mood regulation in bipolar disorder, but also suggest that regional activation can be considered within tighter modular structures without compromising data interpretation. This demonstration may serve as a template for data reduction in future region-of-interest analyses to increase statistical power. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Integrated Experimental and Model-based Analysis Reveals the Spatial Aspects of EGFR Activation Dynamics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shankaran, Harish; Zhang, Yi; Chrisler, William B.; Ewald, Jonathan A.; Wiley, H. S.; Resat, Haluk

    2012-10-02

    The epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) belongs to the ErbB family of receptor tyrosine kinases, and controls a diverse set of cellular responses relevant to development and tumorigenesis. ErbB activation is a complex process involving receptor-ligand binding, receptor dimerization, phosphorylation, and trafficking (internalization, recycling and degradation), which together dictate the spatio-temporal distribution of active receptors within the cell. The ability to predict this distribution, and elucidation of the factors regulating it, would help to establish a mechanistic link between ErbB expression levels and the cellular response. Towards this end, we constructed mathematical models for deconvolving the contributions of receptor dimerization and phosphorylation to EGFR activation, and to examine the dependence of these processes on sub-cellular location. We collected experimental datasets for EGFR activation dynamics in human mammary epithelial cells, with the specific goal of model parameterization, and used the data to estimate parameters for several alternate models. Model-based analysis indicated that: 1) signal termination via receptor dephosphorylation in late endosomes, prior to degradation, is an important component of the response, 2) less than 40% of the receptors in the cell are phosphorylated at any given time, even at saturating ligand doses, and 3) receptor dephosphorylation rates at the cell surface and early endosomes are comparable. We validated the last finding by measuring EGFR dephosphorylation rates at various times following ligand addition both in whole cells, and in endosomes using ELISAs and fluorescent imaging. Overall, our results provide important information on how EGFR phosphorylation levels are regulated within cells. Further, the mathematical model described here can be extended to determine receptor dimer abundances in cells co-expressing various levels of ErbB receptors. This study demonstrates that an iterative cycle of

  11. Near-infrared spectroscopy can reveal increases in brain activity related to animal-assisted therapy

    OpenAIRE

    Morita, Yuka; Ebara, Fumio; Morita, Yoshimitsu; Horikawa, Etsuo

    2017-01-01

    [Purpose] Previous studies have indicated that animal-assisted therapy can promote recovery of psychological, social, and physiological function in mental disorders. This study was designed as a pilot evaluation of the use of near-infrared spectroscopy to objectively identify changes in brain activity that could mediate the effect of animal-assisted therapy. [Subjects and Methods] The participants were 20 healthy students (10 males and 10 females; age 19?21 years) of the Faculty of Agricultur...

  12. Aromatic C-H bond activation revealed by infrared multiphoton dissociation spectroscopy

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jašíková, L.; Hanikýřová, E.; Schröder, Detlef; Roithová, J.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 47, č. 4 (2012), s. 460-465 ISSN 1076-5174 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GAP207/11/0338; Seventh Framework Program(XE) 226716 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : C-H activation * density functional theory calculations * ion spectroscopy * metal oxides * rearrangements Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 3.214, year: 2012

  13. High-resolution mapping reveals links of HP1 with active and inactive chromatin components.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elzo de Wit

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Heterochromatin protein 1 (HP1 is commonly seen as a key factor of repressive heterochromatin, even though a few genes are known to require HP1-chromatin for their expression. To obtain insight into the targeting of HP1 and its interplay with other chromatin components, we have mapped HP1-binding sites on Chromosomes 2 and 4 in Drosophila Kc cells using high-density oligonucleotide arrays and the DNA adenine methyltransferase identification (DamID technique. The resulting high-resolution maps show that HP1 forms large domains in pericentric regions, but is targeted to single genes on chromosome arms. Intriguingly, HP1 shows a striking preference for exon-dense genes on chromosome arms. Furthermore, HP1 binds along entire transcription units, except for 5' regions. Comparison with expression data shows that most of these genes are actively transcribed. HP1 target genes are also marked by the histone variant H3.3 and dimethylated histone 3 lysine 4 (H3K4me2, which are both typical of active chromatin. Interestingly, H3.3 deposition, which is usually observed along entire transcription units, is limited to the 5' ends of HP1-bound genes. Thus, H3.3 and HP1 are mutually exclusive marks on active chromatin. Additionally, we observed that HP1-chromatin and Polycomb-chromatin are nonoverlapping, but often closely juxtaposed, suggesting an interplay between both types of chromatin. These results demonstrate that HP1-chromatin is transcriptionally active and has extensive links with several other chromatin components.

  14. Spores of many common airborne fungi reveal no ice nucleation activity in oil immersion freezing experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pummer, B. G.; Atanasova, L.; Bauer, H.; Bernardi, J.; Druzhinina, I. S.; Fröhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Grothe, H.

    2013-12-01

    Fungal spores are ubiquitous biological aerosols, which are considered to act as ice nuclei. In this study the ice nucleation (IN) activity of spores harvested from 29 fungal strains belonging to 21 different species was tested in the immersion freezing mode by microscopic observation of water-in-oil emulsions. Spores of 8 of these strains were also investigated in a microdroplet freezing array instrument. The focus was laid on species of economical, ecological or sanitary significance. Besides common molds (Ascomycota), some representatives of the widespread group of mushrooms (Basidiomycota) were also investigated. Fusarium avenaceum was the only sample showing IN activity at relatively high temperatures (about 264 K), while the other investigated fungal spores showed no freezing above 248 K. Many of the samples indeed froze at homogeneous ice nucleation temperatures (about 237 K). In combination with other studies, this suggests that only a limited number of species may act as atmospheric ice nuclei. This would be analogous to what is already known for the bacterial ice nuclei. Apart from that, we selected a set of fungal strains from different sites and exposed them to occasional freezing stress during their cultivation. This was in order to test if the exposure to a cold environment encourages the expression of ice nuclei during growth as a way of adaptation. Although the total protein expression was altered by this treatment, it had no significant impact on the IN activity.

  15. Active methanotrophs in two contrasting North American peatland ecosystems revealed using DNA-SIP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Varun; Smemo, Kurt A; Yavitt, Joseph B; Basiliko, Nathan

    2012-02-01

    The active methanotroph community was investigated in two contrasting North American peatlands, a nutrient-rich sedge fen and nutrient-poor Sphagnum bog using in vitro incubations and (13)C-DNA stable-isotope probing (SIP) to measure methane (CH(4)) oxidation rates and label active microbes followed by fingerprinting and sequencing of bacterial and archaeal 16S rDNA and methane monooxygenase (pmoA and mmoX) genes. Rates of CH(4) oxidation were slightly, but significantly, faster in the bog and methanotrophs belonged to the class Alphaproteobacteria and were similar to other methanotrophs of the genera Methylocystis, Methylosinus, and Methylocapsa or Methylocella detected in, or isolated from, European bogs. The fen had a greater phylogenetic diversity of organisms that had assimilated (13)C, including methanotrophs from both the Alpha- and Gammaproteobacteria classes and other potentially non-methanotrophic organisms that were similar to bacteria detected in a UK and Finnish fen. Based on similarities between bacteria in our sites and those in Europe, including Russia, we conclude that site physicochemical characteristics rather than biogeography controlled the phylogenetic diversity of active methanotrophs and that differences in phylogenetic diversity between the bog and fen did not relate to measured CH(4) oxidation rates. A single crenarchaeon in the bog site appeared to be assimilating (13)C in 16S rDNA; however, its phylogenetic similarity to other CO(2)-utilizing archaea probably indicates that this organism is not directly involved in CH(4) oxidation in peat.

  16. Large heterogeneities in comet 67P as revealed by active pits from sinkhole collapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, Jean-Baptiste; Bodewits, Dennis; Besse, Sébastien; Sierks, Holger; Barbieri, Cesare; Lamy, Philippe; Rodrigo, Rafael; Koschny, Detlef; Rickman, Hans; Keller, Horst Uwe; Agarwal, Jessica; A'Hearn, Michael F; Auger, Anne-Thérèse; Barucci, M Antonella; Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Bertini, Ivano; Capanna, Claire; Cremonese, Gabriele; Da Deppo, Vania; Davidsson, Björn; Debei, Stefano; De Cecco, Mariolino; El-Maarry, Mohamed Ramy; Ferri, Francesca; Fornasier, Sonia; Fulle, Marco; Gaskell, Robert; Giacomini, Lorenza; Groussin, Olivier; Guilbert-Lepoutre, Aurélie; Gutierrez-Marques, P; Gutiérrez, Pedro J; Güttler, Carsten; Hoekzema, Nick; Höfner, Sebastian; Hviid, Stubbe F; Ip, Wing-Huen; Jorda, Laurent; Knollenberg, Jörg; Kovacs, Gabor; Kramm, Rainer; Kührt, Ekkehard; Küppers, Michael; La Forgia, Fiorangela; Lara, Luisa M; Lazzarin, Monica; Lee, Vicky; Leyrat, Cédric; Lin, Zhong-Yi; Lopez Moreno, Josè J; Lowry, Stephen; Magrin, Sara; Maquet, Lucie; Marchi, Simone; Marzari, Francesco; Massironi, Matteo; Michalik, Harald; Moissl, Richard; Mottola, Stefano; Naletto, Giampiero; Oklay, Nilda; Pajola, Maurizio; Preusker, Frank; Scholten, Frank; Thomas, Nicolas; Toth, Imre; Tubiana, Cecilia

    2015-07-02

    Pits have been observed on many cometary nuclei mapped by spacecraft. It has been argued that cometary pits are a signature of endogenic activity, rather than impact craters such as those on planetary and asteroid surfaces. Impact experiments and models cannot reproduce the shapes of most of the observed cometary pits, and the predicted collision rates imply that few of the pits are related to impacts. Alternative mechanisms like explosive activity have been suggested, but the driving process remains unknown. Here we report that pits on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko are active, and probably created by a sinkhole process, possibly accompanied by outbursts. We argue that after formation, pits expand slowly in diameter, owing to sublimation-driven retreat of the walls. Therefore, pits characterize how eroded the surface is: a fresh cometary surface will have a ragged structure with many pits, while an evolved surface will look smoother. The size and spatial distribution of pits imply that large heterogeneities exist in the physical, structural or compositional properties of the first few hundred metres below the current nucleus surface.

  17. Digoxin reveals a functional connection between HIV-1 integration preference and T-cell activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhyvoloup, Alexander; Melamed, Anat; Anderson, Ian; Planas, Delphine; Lee, Chen-Hsuin; Kriston-Vizi, Janos; Ketteler, Robin; Merritt, Andy; Routy, Jean-Pierre; Ancuta, Petronela; Bangham, Charles R M; Fassati, Ariberto

    2017-07-01

    HIV-1 integrates more frequently into transcribed genes, however the biological significance of HIV-1 integration targeting has remained elusive. Using a selective high-throughput chemical screen, we discovered that the cardiac glycoside digoxin inhibits wild-type HIV-1 infection more potently than HIV-1 bearing a single point mutation (N74D) in the capsid protein. We confirmed that digoxin repressed viral gene expression by targeting the cellular Na+/K+ ATPase, but this did not explain its selectivity. Parallel RNAseq and integration mapping in infected cells demonstrated that digoxin inhibited expression of genes involved in T-cell activation and cell metabolism. Analysis of >400,000 unique integration sites showed that WT virus integrated more frequently than N74D mutant within or near genes susceptible to repression by digoxin and involved in T-cell activation and cell metabolism. Two main gene networks down-regulated by the drug were CD40L and CD38. Blocking CD40L by neutralizing antibodies selectively inhibited WT virus infection, phenocopying digoxin. Thus the selectivity of digoxin depends on a combination of integration targeting and repression of specific gene networks. The drug unmasked a functional connection between HIV-1 integration and T-cell activation. Our results suggest that HIV-1 evolved integration site selection to couple its early gene expression with the status of target CD4+ T-cells, which may affect latency and viral reactivation.

  18. Digoxin reveals a functional connection between HIV-1 integration preference and T-cell activation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Zhyvoloup

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available HIV-1 integrates more frequently into transcribed genes, however the biological significance of HIV-1 integration targeting has remained elusive. Using a selective high-throughput chemical screen, we discovered that the cardiac glycoside digoxin inhibits wild-type HIV-1 infection more potently than HIV-1 bearing a single point mutation (N74D in the capsid protein. We confirmed that digoxin repressed viral gene expression by targeting the cellular Na+/K+ ATPase, but this did not explain its selectivity. Parallel RNAseq and integration mapping in infected cells demonstrated that digoxin inhibited expression of genes involved in T-cell activation and cell metabolism. Analysis of >400,000 unique integration sites showed that WT virus integrated more frequently than N74D mutant within or near genes susceptible to repression by digoxin and involved in T-cell activation and cell metabolism. Two main gene networks down-regulated by the drug were CD40L and CD38. Blocking CD40L by neutralizing antibodies selectively inhibited WT virus infection, phenocopying digoxin. Thus the selectivity of digoxin depends on a combination of integration targeting and repression of specific gene networks. The drug unmasked a functional connection between HIV-1 integration and T-cell activation. Our results suggest that HIV-1 evolved integration site selection to couple its early gene expression with the status of target CD4+ T-cells, which may affect latency and viral reactivation.

  19. 31P NMR Spectroscopy Revealed Adenylate kinase-like Activity and Phosphotransferase-like Activity from F1-ATPase of Escherichia coli

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Hyun Won

    2011-01-01

    Adenylate kinase-like activity and phosphotransferase-like activity from F 1 -ATPase of Escherichia coli was revealed by 31 P NMR spectroscopy. Incubation of F 1 -ATPase with ADP in the presence of Mg 2+ shows the appearance of 31 P resonances from AMP and Pi, suggesting generation of AMP and ATP by adenylate kinase-like activity and the subsequent hydrolysis to Pi. Incubation of F1-ATPase with ADP in the presence of methanol shows additional peak from methyl phosphate, suggesting phosphotransferase-like activity of F 1 -ATPase. Both adenylate kinase-like activity and phosphotransferase-like activity has not been reported from F 1 -ATPase of Escherichia coli. 31 P NMR could be a valuable tool for the investigation of phosphorous related enzyme

  20. Quantitative cell signalling analysis reveals down-regulation of MAPK pathway activation in colorectal cancer.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Gulmann, Christian

    2009-08-01

    Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK) are considered to play significant roles in colonic carcinogenesis and kinase inhibitor therapy has been proposed as a potential tool in the treatment of this disease. Reverse-phase microarray assays using phospho-specific antibodies can directly measure levels of phosphorylated protein isoforms. In the current study, samples from 35 cases of untreated colorectal cancer colectomies were laser capture-microdissected to isolate epithelium and stroma from cancer as well as normal (i.e. uninvolved) mucosa. Lysates generated from these four tissue types were spotted onto reverse-phase protein microarrays and probed with a panel of antibodies to ERK, p-ERK, p38, p-p38, p-JNK, MEK and p-MEK. Whereas total protein levels were unchanged, or slightly elevated (p38, p = 0.0025) in cancers, activated isoforms, including p-ERK, p-p38 and p-JNK, were decreased two- to four-fold in cancers compared with uninvolved mucosa (p < 0.0023 in all cases except for p-JNK in epithelium, where decrement was non-significant). This was backed up by western blotting. Dukes\\' stage B and C cancers displayed lower p-ERK and p-p38 expression than Dukes\\' stage A cancers, although this was not statistically significant. It is concluded that MAPK activity may be down-regulated in colorectal cancer and that further exploration of inhibitory therapy in this system should be carefully evaluated if this finding is confirmed in larger series.

  1. Theoretical Insights Reveal Novel Motions in Csk's SH3 Domain That Control Kinase Activation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sulyman Barkho

    Full Text Available The Src family of tyrosine kinases (SFKs regulate numerous aspects of cell growth and differentiation and are under the principal control of the C-terminal Src Kinase (Csk. Although Csk and SFKs share conserved kinase, SH2 and SH3 domains, they differ considerably in three-dimensional structure, regulatory mechanism, and the intrinsic kinase activities. Although the SH2 and SH3 domains are known to up- or down-regulate tyrosine kinase function, little is known about the global motions in the full-length kinase that govern these catalytic variations. We use a combination of accelerated Molecular Dynamics (aMD simulations and experimental methods to provide a new view of functional motions in the Csk scaffold. These computational studies suggest that high frequency vibrations in the SH2 domain are coupled through the N-terminal lobe of the kinase domain to motions in the SH3 domain. The effects of these reflexive movements on the kinase domain can be viewed using both Deuterium Exchange Mass Spectrometry (DXMS and steady-state kinetic methods. Removal of several contacts, including a crystallographically unobserved N-terminal segment, between the SH3 and kinase domains short-circuit these coupled motions leading to reduced catalytic efficiency and stability of N-lobe motifs within the kinase domain. The data expands the model of Csk's activation whereby separate domains productively interact with two diametrically opposed surfaces of the kinase domain. Such reversible transitions may organize the active structure of the tyrosine kinase domain of Csk.

  2. Revealing the Origin of Activity in Nitrogen-Doped Nanocarbons towards Electrocatalytic Reduction of Carbon Dioxide

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xu, Junyuan; Kan, Yuhe; Huang, Rui

    2016-01-01

    Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are functionalized with nitrogen atoms for reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2). The investigation explores the origin of the catalyst’s activity and the role of nitrogen chemical states therein. The catalysts show excellent performances, with about 90% current efficiency...... for CO formation and stability over 60 hours. The Tafel analyses and density functional theory calculations suggest that the reduction of CO2 proceeds through an initial rate-determining transfer of one electron to CO2, which leads to the formation of carbon dioxide radical anion (CO2C). The initial...

  3. Activity of pyramidal I and II slip in Mg alloys as revealed by texture development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zecevic, Miroslav; Beyerlein, Irene J.; Knezevic, Marko

    2018-02-01

    Due to the geometry of the hexagonal close-packed (HCP) lattice, there are two types of pyramidal slip modes: { 10 1 bar 1 } 〈 11 2 bar 3 bar 〉 or type I and { 1 bar 1 bar 22 } 〈 11 2 bar 3 〉 or type II in HCP crystalline materials. Here we use crystal plasticity to examine the importance of crystallographic slip by pyramidal type I and type II on texture evolution. The study is applied to an Mg-4%Li alloy. An elastic-plastic polycrystal model is employed to elucidate the reorientation tendencies of these two slip modes in rolling of a textured polycrystal. Comparisons with experimental texture measurements indicate that both pyramidal I and II type slip were active during rolling deformation, with pyramidal I being the dominant mode. A single-slip-mode analysis is used to identify the orientations that prefer pyramidal I vs. II type slip when acting alone in a crystal. The analysis applies not only to Mg-4%Li, but identifies the key texture components in HCP crystals that would help distinguish the activity of pyramidal I from pyramidal II slip in rolling deformation.

  4. High resolution in situ zymography reveals matrix metalloproteinase activity at glutamatergic synapses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gawlak, M; Górkiewicz, T; Gorlewicz, A; Konopacki, F A; Kaczmarek, L; Wilczynski, G M

    2009-01-12

    Synaptic plasticity involves remodeling of extracellular matrix. This is mediated, in part, by enzymes of the matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) family, in particular by gelatinase MMP-9. Accordingly, there is a need of developing methods to visualize gelatinolytic activity at the level of individual synapses, especially in the context of neurotransmitters receptors. Here we present a high-resolution fluorescent in situ zymography (ISZ), performed in thin sections of the alcohol-fixed and polyester wax-embedded brain tissue of the rat (Rattus norvegicus), which is superior to the current ISZ protocols. The method allows visualization of structural details up to the resolution-limit of light microscopy, in conjunction with immunofluorescent labeling. We used this technique to visualize and quantify gelatinolytic activity at the synapses in control and seizure-affected rat brain. In particular, we demonstrated, for the first time, frequent colocalization of gelatinase(s) with synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA)- and AMPA-type glutamate receptors. We believe that our method represents a valuable tool to study extracellular proteolytic processes at the synapses, it could be used, as well, to investigate proteinase involvement in a range of physiological and pathological phenomena in the nervous system.

  5. Deep sequencing of subseafloor eukaryotic rRNA reveals active Fungi across marine subsurface provinces.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Orsi

    Full Text Available The deep marine subsurface is a vast habitat for microbial life where cells may live on geologic timescales. Because DNA in sediments may be preserved on long timescales, ribosomal RNA (rRNA is suggested to be a proxy for the active fraction of a microbial community in the subsurface. During an investigation of eukaryotic 18S rRNA by amplicon pyrosequencing, unique profiles of Fungi were found across a range of marine subsurface provinces including ridge flanks, continental margins, and abyssal plains. Subseafloor fungal populations exhibit statistically significant correlations with total organic carbon (TOC, nitrate, sulfide, and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC. These correlations are supported by terminal restriction length polymorphism (TRFLP analyses of fungal rRNA. Geochemical correlations with fungal pyrosequencing and TRFLP data from this geographically broad sample set suggests environmental selection of active Fungi in the marine subsurface. Within the same dataset, ancient rRNA signatures were recovered from plants and diatoms in marine sediments ranging from 0.03 to 2.7 million years old, suggesting that rRNA from some eukaryotic taxa may be much more stable than previously considered in the marine subsurface.

  6. Active Tension Network model reveals an exotic mechanical state realized in epithelial tissues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noll, Nicholas; Mani, Madhav; Heemskerk, Idse; Streicha, Sebastian; Shraiman, Boris

    Mechanical interactions play a crucial role in epithelial morphogenesis, yet understanding the complex mechanisms through which stress and deformation affect cell behavior remains an open problem. Here we formulate and analyze the Active Tension Network (ATN) model, which assumes that mechanical balance of cells is dominated by cortical tension and introduces tension dependent active remodeling of the cortex. We find that ATNs exhibit unusual mechanical properties: i) ATN behaves as a fluid at short times, but at long times it supports external tension, like a solid; ii) its mechanical equilibrium state has extensive degeneracy associated with a discrete conformal - ''isogonal'' - deformation of cells. ATN model predicts a constraint on equilibrium cell geometry, which we demonstrate to hold in certain epithelial tissues. We further show that isogonal modes are observed in a fruit fly embryo, accounting for the striking variability of apical area of ventral cells and helping understand the early phase of gastrulation. Living matter realizes new and exotic mechanical states, understanding which helps understand biological phenomena.

  7. Revealing the Origin of Activity in Nitrogen-Doped Nanocarbons towards Electrocatalytic Reduction of Carbon Dioxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Junyuan; Kan, Yuhe; Huang, Rui; Zhang, Bingsen; Wang, Bolun; Wu, Kuang-Hsu; Lin, Yangming; Sun, Xiaoyan; Li, Qingfeng; Centi, Gabriele; Su, Dangsheng

    2016-05-23

    Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are functionalized with nitrogen atoms for reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2 ). The investigation explores the origin of the catalyst's activity and the role of nitrogen chemical states therein. The catalysts show excellent performances, with about 90 % current efficiency for CO formation and stability over 60 hours. The Tafel analyses and density functional theory calculations suggest that the reduction of CO2 proceeds through an initial rate-determining transfer of one electron to CO2 , which leads to the formation of carbon dioxide radical anion (CO2 (.-) ). The initial reduction barrier is too high on pristine CNTs, resulting in a very high overpotentials at which the hydrogen evolution reaction dominates over CO2 reduction. The doped nitrogen atoms stabilize the radical anion, thereby lowering the initial reduction barrier and improving the intrinsic activity. The most efficient nitrogen chemical state for this reaction is quaternary nitrogen, followed by pyridinic and pyrrolic nitrogen. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  8. Active sites of two orthologous cytochromes P450 2E1: Differences revealed by spectroscopic methods

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anzenbacherova, Eva; Hudecek, Jiri; Murgida, Daniel; Hildebrandt, Peter; Marchal, Stephane; Lange, Reinhard; Anzenbacher, Pavel

    2005-01-01

    Cytochromes P450 2E1 of human and minipig origin were examined by absorption spectroscopy under high hydrostatic pressure and by resonance Raman spectroscopy. Human enzyme tends to denature to the P420 form more easily than the minipig form; moreover, the apparent compressibility of the heme active site (as judged from a redshift of the absorption maximum with pressure) is greater than that of the minipig counterpart. Relative compactness of the minipig enzyme is also seen in the Raman spectra, where the presence of planar heme conformation was inferred from band positions characteristic of the low-spin heme with high degree of symmetry. In this respect, the CYP2E1 seems to be another example of P450 conformational heterogeneity as shown, e.g., by Davydov et al. for CYP3A4 [Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 312 (2003) 121-130]. The results indicate that the flexibility of the CYP active site is likely one of its basic structural characteristics

  9. Coseismic landslides reveal near-surface rock strength in a high-relief tectonically active setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallen, Sean F.; Clark, Marin K.; Godt, Jonathan W.

    2014-01-01

    We present quantitative estimates of near-surface rock strength relevant to landscape evolution and landslide hazard assessment for 15 geologic map units of the Longmen Shan, China. Strength estimates are derived from a novel method that inverts earthquake peak ground acceleration models and coseismic landslide inventories to obtain material proper- ties and landslide thickness. Aggregate rock strength is determined by prescribing a friction angle of 30° and solving for effective cohesion. Effective cohesion ranges are from 70 kPa to 107 kPa for 15 geologic map units, and are approximately an order of magnitude less than typical laboratory measurements, probably because laboratory tests on hand-sized specimens do not incorporate the effects of heterogeneity and fracturing that likely control near-surface strength at the hillslope scale. We find that strength among the geologic map units studied varies by less than a factor of two. However, increased weakening of units with proximity to the range front, where precipitation and active fault density are the greatest, suggests that cli- matic and tectonic factors overwhelm lithologic differences in rock strength in this high-relief tectonically active setting.

  10. Systematically Altering Bacterial SOS Activity under Stress Reveals Therapeutic Strategies for Potentiating Antibiotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mo, Charlie Y; Manning, Sara A; Roggiani, Manuela; Culyba, Matthew J; Samuels, Amanda N; Sniegowski, Paul D; Goulian, Mark; Kohli, Rahul M

    2016-01-01

    The bacterial SOS response is a DNA damage repair network that is strongly implicated in both survival and acquired drug resistance under antimicrobial stress. The two SOS regulators, LexA and RecA, have therefore emerged as potential targets for adjuvant therapies aimed at combating resistance, although many open questions remain. For example, it is not well understood whether SOS hyperactivation is a viable therapeutic approach or whether LexA or RecA is a better target. Furthermore, it is important to determine which antimicrobials could serve as the best treatment partners with SOS-targeting adjuvants. Here we derived Escherichia coli strains that have mutations in either lexA or recA genes in order to cover the full spectrum of possible SOS activity levels. We then systematically analyzed a wide range of antimicrobials by comparing the mean inhibitory concentrations (MICs) and induced mutation rates for each drug-strain combination. We first show that significant changes in MICs are largely confined to DNA-damaging antibiotics, with strains containing a constitutively repressed SOS response impacted to a greater extent than hyperactivated strains. Second, antibiotic-induced mutation rates were suppressed when SOS activity was reduced, and this trend was observed across a wider spectrum of antibiotics. Finally, perturbing either LexA or RecA proved to be equally viable strategies for targeting the SOS response. Our work provides support for multiple adjuvant strategies, while also suggesting that the combination of an SOS inhibitor with a DNA-damaging antibiotic could offer the best potential for lowering MICs and decreasing acquired drug resistance. IMPORTANCE Our antibiotic arsenal is becoming depleted, in part, because bacteria have the ability to rapidly adapt and acquire resistance to our best agents. The SOS pathway, a widely conserved DNA damage stress response in bacteria, is activated by many antibiotics and has been shown to play central role in

  11. Equinoctial Activity Over Titan Dune Fields Revealed by Cassini/vims

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, S.; Le Mouelic, S.; Barnes, J. W.; Hirtzig, M.; Rannou, P.; Sotin, C.; Brown, R. H.; Bow, J.; Vixie, G.; Cornet, T.; Bourgeois, O.; Narteau, C.; Courrech Du Pont, S.; Le Gall, A.; Reffet, E.; Griffith, C. A.; Jaumann, R.; Stephan, K.; Buratti, B. J.; Clark, R. N.; Baines, K. H.; Nicholson, P. D.; Coustenis, A.

    2012-12-01

    Titan, the largest satellite of Saturn, is the only satellite in the solar system with a dense atmosphere. The close and continuous observations of Titan by the Cassini spacecraft, in orbit around Saturn since July 2004, bring us evidences that Titan troposphere and low stratosphere experience an exotic, but complete meteorological cycle similar to the Earth hydrological cycle, with hydrocarbons evaporation, condensation in clouds, and rainfall. Cassini monitoring campaigns also demonstrate that Titan's cloud coverage and climate vary with latitude. Titan's tropics, with globally weak meteorological activity and widespread dune fields, seem to be slightly more arid than the poles, where extensive and numerous liquid reservoirs and sustained cloud activity have been discovered. Only a few tropo-spheric clouds have been observed at Titan's tropics during the southern summer. As equinox was approaching (in August 2009), they occurred more frequently and appeared to grow in strength and size. We present here the observation of intense brightening at Titan's tropics, very close to the equinox. These detections were conducted with the Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) onboard Cassini. We will discuss the VIMS images of the three individual events detected so far, observed during the Titan's flybys T56 (22 May 2009), T65 (13 January 2010) and T70 (21 June 2010). T56, T65 and T70 observations show an intense and transient brighten-ing of large regions very close to the equator, right over the extensive dune fields of Senkyo, Belet and Shangri-La. They all appear spectrally and morphologically different from all transient surface features or atmospheric phenomena previously reported. Indeed, these events share in particular a strong brightening at wavelengths greater than 2 μm (especially at 5 μm), making them spectrally distinct from the small tropical clouds observed before the equinox and the large storms observed near the equator in September and October

  12. Structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin reveals a putative mechanism of conformational activation for protease entrapment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fyfe, Cameron D.; Grinter, Rhys; Josts, Inokentijs; Mosbahi, Khedidja [University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom); Roszak, Aleksander W. [University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom); University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom); Cogdell, Richard J.; Wall, Daniel M.; Burchmore, Richard J. S.; Byron, Olwyn; Walker, Daniel, E-mail: daniel.walker@glasgow.ac.uk [University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom)

    2015-06-30

    The X-ray structure of protease-cleaved E. coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. Bacterial α-2-macroglobulins have been suggested to function in defence as broad-spectrum inhibitors of host proteases that breach the outer membrane. Here, the X-ray structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. In this competitive mechanism, protease cleavage of the bait-region domain results in the untethering of an intrinsically disordered region of this domain which disrupts native interdomain interactions that maintain E. coli α-2-macroglobulin in the inactivated form. The resulting global conformational change results in entrapment of the protease and activation of the thioester bond that covalently links to the attacking protease. Owing to the similarity in structure and domain architecture of Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin and human α-2-macroglobulin, this protease-activation mechanism is likely to operate across the diverse members of this group.

  13. Structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin reveals a putative mechanism of conformational activation for protease entrapment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fyfe, Cameron D.; Grinter, Rhys; Josts, Inokentijs; Mosbahi, Khedidja; Roszak, Aleksander W.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Wall, Daniel M.; Burchmore, Richard J. S.; Byron, Olwyn; Walker, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    The X-ray structure of protease-cleaved E. coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. Bacterial α-2-macroglobulins have been suggested to function in defence as broad-spectrum inhibitors of host proteases that breach the outer membrane. Here, the X-ray structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. In this competitive mechanism, protease cleavage of the bait-region domain results in the untethering of an intrinsically disordered region of this domain which disrupts native interdomain interactions that maintain E. coli α-2-macroglobulin in the inactivated form. The resulting global conformational change results in entrapment of the protease and activation of the thioester bond that covalently links to the attacking protease. Owing to the similarity in structure and domain architecture of Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin and human α-2-macroglobulin, this protease-activation mechanism is likely to operate across the diverse members of this group

  14. Siderophile element concentrations in magnetic spherules from deep sea sediments revealed by instrumental neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nogami, Ken-ichi; Shimamura, Tadashi; Tazawa, Yuji; Yamakoshi, Kazuo.

    1980-01-01

    For the purpose of deciding the extraterrestrial origin of the magnetic spherules found in deep sea sediments, the siderophile elements Co, Ni, Ir and/or Au etc., were measured by instrumental neutron activation analysis. Spherules were collected from red clay samples which were dredged from Mid Pacific Ocean. Only spherules which had smooth surfaces and relatively high specific gravities were chosen for analysis. Existence of Co, Ni and Ir in most spherules suggests the possibility of an extraterrestrial origin for these spherules. It is not clear whether these spherules are droplets ablated from iron meteorites entering into the Earth's atmosphere or they are cosmic iron grains themselves. X-ray diffraction analysis suggested that these spherules are the products of rapid cooling materials. (author)

  15. Impedance spectroscopy of micro-Droplets reveals activation of Bacterial Mechanosensitive Channels in Hypotonic Solutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebrahimi, Aida; Alam, Muhammad A.

    Rapid detection of bacterial pathogens is of great importance in healthcare, food safety, environmental monitoring, and homeland security. Most bacterial detection platforms rely on binary fission (i.e. cell growth) to reach a threshold cell population that can be resolved by the sensing method. Since cell division depends on the bacteria type, the detection time of such methods can vary from hours to days. In contrast, in this work, we show that bacteria cells can be detected within minutes by relying on activation of specific protein channels, i.e. mechanosensitive channels (MS channels). When cells are exposed to hypotonic solutions, MS channels allow efflux of solutes to the external solution which leads to release the excessive membrane tension. Release of the cytoplasmic solutes, in turn, results in increase of the electrical conductance measured by droplet-based impedance sensing. The approach can be an effective technique for fast, pre-screening of bacterial contamination at ultra-low concentration.

  16. Sealing process with calcite in the Nojima active fault zone revealed from isotope analysis of calcite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arai, Takashi; Tsukahara, Hiroaki; Morikiyo, Toshiro

    2003-01-01

    The Nojima fault appeared on the surface in the northern part of Awaji Island, central Japan as a result of the Hyogo-ken Nanbu earthquake (1995, M=7.2). Active fault drilling was performed by the Disaster Prevention Research Institute (DPRI), Kyoto University, and core samples were retrieved from 1410 to 1710 m, which were composed of intact and fractured granodiorites. We obtained calcite samples and gas samples from the vein in marginal fracture and non-fracture zones. We analyzed the carbon and oxygen isotope ratios of calcite and carbon dioxide to investigate the characteristic isotope ratios of fluids in the active fault zone, to estimate the origins of fluids, and to determine the sealing process of fractures. The analyzed values of carbon and oxygen isotope ratios of calcite were -10.3 to -7.2 per mille, 18 to 23 per mille, respectively, and carbon isotope ratios of CO 2 were -21 to -17 per mille. If carbon isotope ratios of calcite were at equilibrium with those of CO 2 , the precipitation temperature of calcite is calculated to be 30 to 50 deg C. This temperature is consistent with the present temperature of the depth where drilling cores were retrieved. Oxygen isotope ratios of H 2 O that, precipitated calcite were calculated to be -1.8 to -5.5 per mille. These values indicate calcite were precipitated from mixed fluids of sea water and meteoric water. Therefore, the marginal fracture zone of the Nojima fault was sealed with calcite, which was generated from mixing of sea water and meteoric water in situ. (author)

  17. Ultrastructural and Molecular Analyses Reveal Enhanced Nucleolar Activity in Medicago truncatula Cells Overexpressing the MtTdp2α Gene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macovei, Anca; Faè, Matteo; Biggiogera, Marco; de Sousa Araújo, Susana; Carbonera, Daniela; Balestrazzi, Alma

    2018-01-01

    The role of tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase 2 (Tdp2) involved in the repair of 5′-end-blocking DNA lesions is still poorly explored in plants. To gain novel insights, Medicago truncatula suspension cultures overexpressing the MtTdp2α gene (Tdp2α-13C and Tdp2α-28 lines, respectively) and a control (CTRL) line carrying the empty vector were investigated. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) revealed enlarged nucleoli (up to 44% expansion of the area, compared to CTRL), the presence of nucleolar vacuoles, increased frequency of multinucleolate cells (up to 4.3-fold compared to CTRL) and reduced number of ring-shaped nucleoli in Tdp2α-13C and Tdp2α-28 lines. Ultrastructural data suggesting for enhanced nucleolar activity in MtTdp2α-overexpressing lines were integrated with results from bromouridine incorporation. The latter revealed an increase of labeled transcripts in both Tdp2α-13C and Tdp2α-28 cells, within the nucleolus and in the extra-nucleolar region. MtTdp2α-overexpressing cells showed tolerance to etoposide, a selective inhibitor of DNA topoisomerase II, as evidenced by DNA diffusion assay. TEM analysis revealed etoposide-induced rearrangements within the nucleolus, resembling the nucleolar caps observed in animal cells under transcription impairment. Based on these findings it is evident that MtTdp2α-overexpression enhances nucleolar activity in plant cells. PMID:29868059

  18. Ultrastructural and Molecular Analyses Reveal Enhanced Nucleolar Activity in Medicago truncatula Cells Overexpressing the MtTdp2α Gene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anca Macovei

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The role of tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase 2 (Tdp2 involved in the repair of 5′-end-blocking DNA lesions is still poorly explored in plants. To gain novel insights, Medicago truncatula suspension cultures overexpressing the MtTdp2α gene (Tdp2α-13C and Tdp2α-28 lines, respectively and a control (CTRL line carrying the empty vector were investigated. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM revealed enlarged nucleoli (up to 44% expansion of the area, compared to CTRL, the presence of nucleolar vacuoles, increased frequency of multinucleolate cells (up to 4.3-fold compared to CTRL and reduced number of ring-shaped nucleoli in Tdp2α-13C and Tdp2α-28 lines. Ultrastructural data suggesting for enhanced nucleolar activity in MtTdp2α-overexpressing lines were integrated with results from bromouridine incorporation. The latter revealed an increase of labeled transcripts in both Tdp2α-13C and Tdp2α-28 cells, within the nucleolus and in the extra-nucleolar region. MtTdp2α-overexpressing cells showed tolerance to etoposide, a selective inhibitor of DNA topoisomerase II, as evidenced by DNA diffusion assay. TEM analysis revealed etoposide-induced rearrangements within the nucleolus, resembling the nucleolar caps observed in animal cells under transcription impairment. Based on these findings it is evident that MtTdp2α-overexpression enhances nucleolar activity in plant cells.

  19. Data on the effect of conductive hearing loss on auditory and visual cortex activity revealed by intrinsic signal imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teichert, Manuel; Bolz, Jürgen

    2017-10-01

    This data article provides additional data related to the research article entitled "Simultaneous intrinsic signal imaging of auditory and visual cortex reveals profound effects of acute hearing loss on visual processing" (Teichert and Bolz, 2017) [1]. The primary auditory and visual cortex (A1 and V1) of adult male C57BL/6J mice (P120-P240) were mapped simultaneously using intrinsic signal imaging (Kalatsky and Stryker, 2003) [2]. A1 and V1 activity evoked by combined auditory and visual stimulation were measured before and after conductive hearing loss (CHL) induced by bilateral malleus removal. We provide data showing that A1 responsiveness evoked by sounds of different sound pressure levels (SPL) decreased after CHL whereas visually evoked V1 activity increased after this intervention. In addition, we also provide imaging data on percentage of V1 activity increases after CHL compared to pre-CHL.

  20. Pyrosequencing Reveals Soil Enzyme Activities and Bacterial Communities Impacted by Graphene and Its Oxides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rong, Yan; Wang, Yi; Guan, Yina; Ma, Jiangtao; Cai, Zhiqiang; Yang, Guanghua; Zhao, Xiyue

    2017-10-25

    Graphene (GN) and graphene oxides (GOs) are novel carbon nanomaterial; they have been attracting much attention because of their excellent properties and are widely applied in many areas, including energy, electronics, biomedicine, environmental science, etc. With industrial production and consumption of GN/GO, they will inevitably enter the soil and water environments. GN/GO may directly cause certain harm to microorganisms and lead to ecological and environmental risks. GOs are GN derivatives with abundant oxygen-containing functional groups in their graphitic backbone. The structure and chemistry of GN show obvious differences compared to those of GO, which lead to the different environmental behaviors. In this study, four different types of soil (S1-S4) were employed to investigate the effect of GN and GO on soil enzymatic activity, microbial population, and bacterial community through pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons. The results showed that soil enzyme activity (invertase, protease, catalase, and urease) and microbial population (bacteria, actinomycetes, and fungi) changed after GN/GO release into soils. Soil microbial community species are more rich, and the diversity also increases after GO/GN application. The phylum of Proteobacteria increased at 90 days after treatment (DAT) after GN/GO application. The phylum of Chloroflexi occurred after GN application at 90 DAT in S1 soil and reached 4.6%. Proteobacteria was the most abundant phylum in S2, S3, and S4 soils; it ranged from 43.6 to 71.4% in S2 soil, from 45.6 to 73.7% in S3 soil, and from 38.1 to 56.7% in S4 soil. The most abundant genera were Bacillus (37.5-47.0%) and Lactococcus (28.0-39.0%) in S1 soil, Lysobacter and Flavobacterium in S2 soil, Pedobacter in S3 soil, and Massilia in S4 soil. The effect of GN and GO on the soil microbial community is time-dependent, and there are no significant differences between the samples at 10 and 90 DAT.

  1. Open source data reveals connection between online and on-street protest activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Hong; Manrique, Pedro; Johnson, Daniela; Restrepo, Elvira; Johnson, Neil F

    There is enormous interest in inferring features of human behavior in the real world from potential digital footprints created online - particularly at the collective level, where the sheer volume of online activity may indicate some changing mood within the population regarding a particular topic. Civil unrest is a prime example, involving the spontaneous appearance of large crowds of otherwise unrelated people on the street on a certain day. While indicators of brewing protests might be gleaned from individual online communications or account content (e.g. Twitter, Facebook) societal concerns regarding privacy can make such probing a politically delicate issue. Here we show that instead, a simple low-level indicator of civil unrest can be obtained from online data at the aggregate level through Google Trends or similar tools. Our study covers countries across Latin America during 2011-2014 in which diverse civil unrest events took place. In each case, we find that the combination of the volume and momentum of searches from Google Trends surrounding pairs of simple keywords, tailored for the specific cultural setting, provide good indicators of periods of civil unrest. This proof-of-concept study motivates the search for more geographically specific indicators based on geo-located searches at the urban level.

  2. Neural activity in the medial temporal lobe reveals the fidelity of mental time travel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kragel, James E; Morton, Neal W; Polyn, Sean M

    2015-02-18

    Neural circuitry in the medial temporal lobe (MTL) is critically involved in mental time travel, which involves the vivid retrieval of the details of past experience. Neuroscientific theories propose that the MTL supports memory of the past by retrieving previously encoded episodic information, as well as by reactivating a temporal code specifying the position of a particular event within an episode. However, the neural computations supporting these abilities are underspecified. To test hypotheses regarding the computational mechanisms supported by different MTL subregions during mental time travel, we developed a computational model that linked a blood oxygenation level-dependent signal to cognitive operations, allowing us to predict human performance in a memory search task. Activity in the posterior MTL, including parahippocampal cortex, reflected how strongly one reactivates the temporal context of a retrieved memory, allowing the model to predict whether the next memory will correspond to a nearby moment in the study episode. A signal in the anterior MTL, including perirhinal cortex, indicated the successful retrieval of list items, without providing information regarding temporal organization. A hippocampal signal reflected both processes, consistent with theories that this region binds item and context information together to form episodic memories. These findings provide evidence for modern theories that describe complementary roles of the hippocampus and surrounding parahippocampal and perirhinal cortices during the retrieval of episodic memories, shaping how humans revisit the past. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/352914-13$15.00/0.

  3. Screening Bioactives Reveals Nanchangmycin as a Broad Spectrum Antiviral Active against Zika Virus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keiko Rausch

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Zika virus is an emerging arthropod-borne flavivirus for which there are no vaccines or specific therapeutics. We screened a library of 2,000 bioactive compounds for their ability to block Zika virus infection in three distinct cell types with two different strains of Zika virus. Using a microscopy-based assay, we validated 38 drugs that inhibited Zika virus infection, including FDA-approved nucleoside analogs. Cells expressing high levels of the attachment factor AXL can be protected from infection with receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors, while placental-derived cells that lack AXL expression are insensitive to this inhibition. Importantly, we identified nanchangmycin as a potent inhibitor of Zika virus entry across all cell types tested, including physiologically relevant primary cells. Nanchangmycin also was active against other medically relevant viruses, including West Nile, dengue, and chikungunya viruses that use a similar route of entry. This study provides a resource of small molecules to study Zika virus pathogenesis.

  4. Revealing Physical Activity of GRB Central Engine with Macronova/Kilonova Data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shen, Zhao-Qiang; Jin, Zhi-Ping; Liang, Yun-Feng; Li, Xiang; Fan, Yi-Zhong; Wei, Da-Ming, E-mail: yzfan@pmo.ac.cn, E-mail: dmwei@pmo.ac.cn [Key Laboratory of dark Matter and Space Astronomy, Purple Mountain Observatory, Chinese Academy of Science, Nanjing 210008 (China)

    2017-02-01

    The modeling of Li-Paczyński macronova/kilonova signals gives a reasonable estimate on the neutron-rich material ejected during the neutron star mergers. Usually the accretion disk is more massive than the macronova ejecta, with which the efficiencies of converting the disk mass into prompt emission of three merger-driven GRBs can hence be directly constrained. Supposing the macronovae/kilonovae associated with GRB 050709, GRB 060614, and GRB 130603B arose from radioactive decay of the r -process material, the upper limit on energy conversion efficiencies are found to be as low as ∼10{sup −6}–10{sup −4}. Moreover, for all three events, neutrino annihilation is likely powerful enough to account for the brief gamma-ray flashes. Neutrino annihilation can also explain the “extended” emission lasting ∼100 s in GRB 050709, but does not work for the one in GRB 060614. These progresses demonstrate that the macronova can serve as a novel probe of the central engine activity.

  5. Improved detection reveals active β-papillomavirus infection in skin lesions from kidney transplant recipients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borgogna, Cinzia; Lanfredini, Simone; Peretti, Alberto; De Andrea, Marco; Zavattaro, Elisa; Colombo, Enrico; Quaglia, Marco; Boldorini, Renzo; Miglio, Umberto; Doorbar, John; Bavinck, Jan N Bouwes; Quint, Koen D; de Koning, Maurits N C; Landolfo, Santo; Gariglio, Marisa

    2014-08-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether detection of β-HPV gene products, as defined in epidermodysplasia verruciformis skin cancer, could also be observed in lesions from kidney transplant recipients alongside the viral DNA. A total of 111 samples, corresponding to 79 skin lesions abscised from 17 kidney transplant recipients, have been analyzed. The initial PCR analysis demonstrated that β-HPV-DNA was highly present in our tumor series (85%). Using a combination of antibodies raised against the E4 and L1 proteins of the β-genotypes, we were able to visualize productive infection in 4 out of 19 actinic keratoses, and in the pathological borders of 1 out of 14 squamous cell carcinomas and 1 out of 31 basal cell carcinomas. Increased expression of the cellular proliferation marker minichromosome maintenance protein 7 (MCM7), that extended into the upper epithelial layers, was a common feature of all the E4-positive areas, indicating that cells were driven into the cell cycle in areas of productive viral infections. Although the present study does not directly demonstrate a causal role of these viruses, the detection of E4 and L1 positivity in actinic keratosis and the adjacent pathological epithelium of skin cancer, clearly shows that β-HPV are actively replicating in the intraepidermal precursor lesions of kidney transplant recipients and can therefore cooperate with other carcinogenic agents, such as UVB, favoring skin cancer promotion.

  6. A genetic screen reveals a periplasmic copper chaperone required for nitrite reductase activity in pathogenic Neisseria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jen, Freda E-C; Djoko, Karrera Y; Bent, Stephen J; Day, Christopher J; McEwan, Alastair G; Jennings, Michael P

    2015-09-01

    Under conditions of low oxygen availability, Neisseria meningitidis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae are able to respire via a partial denitrification pathway in which nitrite is converted to nitrous oxide. In this process, nitrite reductase (AniA), a copper (Cu)-containing protein converts nitrite to NO, and this product is converted to nitrous oxide by nitric oxide reductase (NorB). NorB also confers protection against toxic NO, and so we devised a conditional lethal screen, using a norB mutant, to identify mutants that were resistant to nitrite-dependent killing. After random-deletion mutagenesis of N. meningitidis, this genetic screen identified a gene encoding a Cu chaperone that is essential for AniA function, AccA. Purified AccA binds one Cu (I) ion and also possesses a second binding site for Cu (II). This novel periplasmic Cu chaperone (AccA) appears to be essential for provision of Cu ions to AniA of pathogenic Neisseria to generate an active nitrite reductase. Apart from the Neisseria genus, AccA is distributed across a wide range of environmental Proteobacteria species. © FASEB.

  7. Amplitude-modulated stimuli reveal auditory-visual interactions in brain activity and brain connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laing, Mark; Rees, Adrian; Vuong, Quoc C

    2015-01-01

    The temporal congruence between auditory and visual signals coming from the same source can be a powerful means by which the brain integrates information from different senses. To investigate how the brain uses temporal information to integrate auditory and visual information from continuous yet unfamiliar stimuli, we used amplitude-modulated tones and size-modulated shapes with which we could manipulate the temporal congruence between the sensory signals. These signals were independently modulated at a slow or a fast rate. Participants were presented with auditory-only, visual-only, or auditory-visual (AV) trials in the fMRI scanner. On AV trials, the auditory and visual signal could have the same (AV congruent) or different modulation rates (AV incongruent). Using psychophysiological interaction analyses, we found that auditory regions showed increased functional connectivity predominantly with frontal regions for AV incongruent relative to AV congruent stimuli. We further found that superior temporal regions, shown previously to integrate auditory and visual signals, showed increased connectivity with frontal and parietal regions for the same contrast. Our findings provide evidence that both activity in a network of brain regions and their connectivity are important for AV integration, and help to bridge the gap between transient and familiar AV stimuli used in previous studies.

  8. Microarray Analysis Reveals the Molecular Basis of Antiarthritic Activity of Huo-Luo-Xiao-Ling Dan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hua Yu

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Rheumatoid arthritis (RA is a chronic inflammatory disease of autoimmune origin. Huo-luo-xiao-ling dan (HLXL is an herbal mixture that has been used in traditional Chinese medicine over several decades to treat chronic inflammatory diseases including RA. However, the mechanism of the anti-arthritic action of this herbal remedy is poorly understood at the molecular level. In this study, we determined by microarray analysis the effects of HLXL on the global gene expression profile of the draining lymph node cells (LNC in the rat adjuvant arthritis (AA model of human RA. In LNC restimulated in vitro with the disease-related antigen mycobacterial heat-shock protein 65 (Bhsp65, 84 differentially expressed genes (DEG (64 upregulated and 20 downregulated versus 120 DEG (94 upregulated and 26 downregulated were identified in HLXL-treated versus vehicle (Water-treated rats, respectively, and 62 DEG (45 upregulated and 17 downregulated were shared between the two groups. The most affected pathways in response to HLXL treatment included immune response, inflammation, cellular proliferation and apoptosis, and metabolic processes, many of which are directly relevant to arthritis pathogenesis. These results would advance our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the anti-arthritic activity of HLXL.

  9. Mass spectrometry footprinting reveals the structural rearrangements of cyanobacterial orange carotenoid protein upon light activation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Haijun [Washington University; Zhang, Hao [Washington University; King, Jeremy D. [Washington University; Wolf, Nathan R. [Washington University; Prado, Mindy [Washington University; Gross, Michael L. [Washington University; Blankenship, Robert E. [Washington University

    2014-12-01

    The orange carotenoid protein (OCP), a member of the family of blue light photoactive proteins, is required for efficient photoprotection in many cyanobacteria. Photoexcitation of the carotenoid in the OCP results in structural changes within the chromophore and the protein to give an active red form of OCP that is required for phycobilisome binding and consequent fluorescence quenching. We characterized the light-dependent structural changes by mass spectrometry-based carboxyl footprinting and found that an α helix in the N-terminal extension of OCP plays a key role in this photoactivation process. Although this helix is located on and associates with the outside of the β-sheet core in the C-terminal domain of OCP in the dark, photoinduced changes in the domain structure disrupt this interaction. We propose that this mechanism couples light-dependent carotenoid conformational changes to global protein conformational dynamics in favor of functional phycobilisome binding, and is an essential part of the OCP photocycle.

  10. Comparative analysis of carbohydrate active enzymes in Clostridium termitidis CT1112 reveals complex carbohydrate degradation ability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riffat I Munir

    Full Text Available Clostridium termitidis strain CT1112 is an anaerobic, gram positive, mesophilic, cellulolytic bacillus isolated from the gut of the wood-feeding termite, Nasutitermes lujae. It produces biofuels such as hydrogen and ethanol from cellulose, cellobiose, xylan, xylose, glucose, and other sugars, and therefore could be used for biofuel production from biomass through consolidated bioprocessing. The first step in the production of biofuel from biomass by microorganisms is the hydrolysis of complex carbohydrates present in biomass. This is achieved through the presence of a repertoire of secreted or complexed carbohydrate active enzymes (CAZymes, sometimes organized in an extracellular organelle called cellulosome. To assess the ability and understand the mechanism of polysaccharide hydrolysis in C. termitidis, the recently sequenced strain CT1112 of C. termitidis was analyzed for both CAZymes and cellulosomal components, and compared to other cellulolytic bacteria. A total of 355 CAZyme sequences were identified in C. termitidis, significantly higher than other Clostridial species. Of these, high numbers of glycoside hydrolases (199 and carbohydrate binding modules (95 were identified. The presence of a variety of CAZymes involved with polysaccharide utilization/degradation ability suggests hydrolysis potential for a wide range of polysaccharides. In addition, dockerin-bearing enzymes, cohesion domains and a cellulosomal gene cluster were identified, indicating the presence of potential cellulosome assembly.

  11. Repetition-related reductions in neural activity reveal component processes of mental simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szpunar, Karl K; St Jacques, Peggy L; Robbins, Clifford A; Wig, Gagan S; Schacter, Daniel L

    2014-05-01

    In everyday life, people adaptively prepare for the future by simulating dynamic events about impending interactions with people, objects and locations. Previous research has consistently demonstrated that a distributed network of frontal-parietal-temporal brain regions supports this ubiquitous mental activity. Nonetheless, little is known about the manner in which specific regions of this network contribute to component features of future simulation. In two experiments, we used a functional magnetic resonance (fMR)-repetition suppression paradigm to demonstrate that distinct frontal-parietal-temporal regions are sensitive to processing the scenarios or what participants imagined was happening in an event (e.g., medial prefrontal, posterior cingulate, temporal-parietal and middle temporal cortices are sensitive to the scenarios associated with future social events), people (medial prefrontal cortex), objects (inferior frontal and premotor cortices) and locations (posterior cingulate/retrosplenial, parahippocampal and posterior parietal cortices) that typically constitute simulations of personal future events. This pattern of results demonstrates that the neural substrates of these component features of event simulations can be reliably identified in the context of a task that requires participants to simulate complex, everyday future experiences.

  12. Novel activities by ebolavirus and marburgvirus interferon antagonists revealed using a standardized in vitro reporter system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guito, Jonathan C; Albariño, César G; Chakrabarti, Ayan K; Towner, Jonathan S

    2017-01-15

    Filoviruses are highly lethal in humans and nonhuman primates, likely due to potent antagonism of host interferon (IFN) responses early in infection. Filoviral protein VP35 is implicated as the major IFN induction antagonist, while Ebola virus (EBOV) VP24 or Marburg virus (MARV) VP40 are known to block downstream IFN signaling. Despite progress elucidating EBOV and MARV antagonist function, those for most other filoviruses, including Reston (RESTV), Sudan (SUDV), Taï Forest (TAFV), Bundibugyo (BDBV) and Ravn (RAVV) viruses, remain largely neglected. Thus, using standardized vectors and reporter assays, we characterized activities by each IFN antagonist from all known ebolavirus and marburgvirus species side-by-side. We uncover noncanonical suppression of IFN induction by ebolavirus VP24, differing potencies by MARV and RAVV proteins, and intriguingly, weaker antagonism by VP24 of RESTV. These underlying molecular explanations for differential virulence in humans could guide future investigations of more-neglected filoviruses as well as treatment and vaccine studies. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  13. Amplitude-modulated stimuli reveal auditory-visual interactions in brain activity and brain connectivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark eLaing

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The temporal congruence between auditory and visual signals coming from the same source can be a powerful means by which the brain integrates information from different senses. To investigate how the brain uses temporal information to integrate auditory and visual information from continuous yet unfamiliar stimuli, we use amplitude-modulated tones and size-modulated shapes with which we could manipulate the temporal congruence between the sensory signals. These signals were independently modulated at a slow or a fast rate. Participants were presented with auditory-only, visual-only or auditory-visual (AV trials in the scanner. On AV trials, the auditory and visual signal could have the same (AV congruent or different modulation rates (AV incongruent. Using psychophysiological interaction analyses, we found that auditory regions showed increased functional connectivity predominantly with frontal regions for AV incongruent relative to AV congruent stimuli. We further found that superior temporal regions, shown previously to integrate auditory and visual signals, showed increased connectivity with frontal and parietal regions for the same contrast. Our findings provide evidence that both activity in a network of brain regions and their connectivity are important for auditory-visual integration, and help to bridge the gap between transient and familiar AV stimuli used in previous studies.

  14. Digital quantification of gene expression in sequential breast cancer biopsies reveals activation of an immune response.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rinath M Jeselsohn

    Full Text Available Advancements in molecular biology have unveiled multiple breast cancer promoting pathways and potential therapeutic targets. Large randomized clinical trials remain the ultimate means of validating therapeutic efficacy, but they require large cohorts of patients and are lengthy and costly. A useful approach is to conduct a window of opportunity study in which patients are exposed to a drug pre-surgically during the interval between the core needle biopsy and the definitive surgery. These are non-therapeutic studies and the end point is not clinical or pathological response but rather evaluation of molecular changes in the tumor specimens that can predict response. However, since the end points of the non-therapeutic studies are biologic, it is critical to first define the biologic changes that occur in the absence of treatment. In this study, we compared the molecular profiles of breast cancer tumors at the time of the diagnostic biopsy versus the definitive surgery in the absence of any intervention using the Nanostring nCounter platform. We found that while the majority of the transcripts did not vary between the two biopsies, there was evidence of activation of immune related genes in response to the first biopsy and further investigations of the immune changes after a biopsy in early breast cancer seem warranted.

  15. Adaptability and selectivity of human peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) pan agonists revealed from crystal structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oyama, Takuji; Toyota, Kenji; Waku, Tsuyoshi; Hirakawa, Yuko; Nagasawa, Naoko; Kasuga, Jun-ichi; Hashimoto, Yuichi; Miyachi, Hiroyuki; Morikawa, Kosuke

    2009-01-01

    The structures of the ligand-binding domains (LBDs) of human peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARα, PPARγ and PPARδ) in complexes with a pan agonist, an α/δ dual agonist and a PPARδ-specific agonist were determined. The results explain how each ligand is recognized by the PPAR LBDs at an atomic level. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) belong to the nuclear hormone receptor family, which is defined as transcriptional factors that are activated by the binding of ligands to their ligand-binding domains (LBDs). Although the three PPAR subtypes display different tissue distribution patterns and distinct pharmacological profiles, they all are essentially related to fatty-acid and glucose metabolism. Since the PPARs share similar three-dimensional structures within the LBDs, synthetic ligands which simultaneously activate two or all of the PPARs could be potent candidates in terms of drugs for the treatment of abnormal metabolic homeostasis. The structures of several PPAR LBDs were determined in complex with synthetic ligands, derivatives of 3-(4-alkoxyphenyl)propanoic acid, which exhibit unique agonistic activities. The PPARα and PPARγ LBDs were complexed with the same pan agonist, TIPP-703, which activates all three PPARs and their crystal structures were determined. The two LBD–ligand complex structures revealed how the pan agonist is adapted to the similar, but significantly different, ligand-binding pockets of the PPARs. The structures of the PPARδ LBD in complex with an α/δ-selective ligand, TIPP-401, and with a related δ-specific ligand, TIPP-204, were also determined. The comparison between the two PPARδ complexes revealed how each ligand exhibits either a ‘dual selective’ or ‘single specific’ binding mode

  16. Metaproteomics of cellulose methanisation under thermophilic conditions reveals a surprisingly high proteolytic activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lü, Fan; Bize, Ariane; Guillot, Alain; Monnet, Véronique; Madigou, Céline; Chapleur, Olivier; Mazéas, Laurent; He, Pinjing; Bouchez, Théodore

    2014-01-01

    Cellulose is the most abundant biopolymer on Earth. Optimising energy recovery from this renewable but recalcitrant material is a key issue. The metaproteome expressed by thermophilic communities during cellulose anaerobic digestion was investigated in microcosms. By multiplying the analytical replicates (65 protein fractions analysed by MS/MS) and relying solely on public protein databases, more than 500 non-redundant protein functions were identified. The taxonomic community structure as inferred from the metaproteomic data set was in good overall agreement with 16S rRNA gene tag pyrosequencing and fluorescent in situ hybridisation analyses. Numerous functions related to cellulose and hemicellulose hydrolysis and fermentation catalysed by bacteria related to Caldicellulosiruptor spp. and Clostridium thermocellum were retrieved, indicating their key role in the cellulose-degradation process and also suggesting their complementary action. Despite the abundance of acetate as a major fermentation product, key methanogenesis enzymes from the acetoclastic pathway were not detected. In contrast, enzymes from the hydrogenotrophic pathway affiliated to Methanothermobacter were almost exclusively identified for methanogenesis, suggesting a syntrophic acetate oxidation process coupled to hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. Isotopic analyses confirmed the high dominance of the hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. Very surprising was the identification of an abundant proteolytic activity from Coprothermobacter proteolyticus strains, probably acting as scavenger and/or predator performing proteolysis and fermentation. Metaproteomics thus appeared as an efficient tool to unravel and characterise metabolic networks as well as ecological interactions during methanisation bioprocesses. More generally, metaproteomics provides direct functional insights at a limited cost, and its attractiveness should increase in the future as sequence databases are growing exponentially.

  17. Regional passive seismic monitoring reveals dynamic glacier activity on Spitsbergen, Svalbard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Köhler

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Dynamic glacier activity is increasingly observed through passive seismic monitoring. We analysed near-regional-scale seismicity on the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard to identify seismic icequake signals and to study their spatial–temporal distribution within the 14-year period from 2000 until 2013. This is the first study that uses seismic data recorded on permanent broadband stations to detect and locate icequakes in different regions of Spitsbergen, the main island of the archipelago. A temporary local seismic network and direct observations of glacier calving and surging were used to identify icequake sources. We observed a high number of icequakes with clear spectral peaks between 1 and 8 Hz in different parts of Spitsbergen. Spatial clusters of icequakes could be associated with individual grounded tidewater glaciers and exhibited clear seasonal variability each year with more signals observed during the melt season. Locations at the termini of glaciers, and correlation with visual calving observations in situ at Kronebreen, a glacier in the Kongsfjorden region, show that these icequakes were caused dominantly by calving. Indirect evidence for glacier surging through increased calving seismicity was found in 2003 at Tunabreen, a glacier in central Spitsbergen. Another type of icequake was observed in the area of the Nathorstbreen glacier system. Seismic events occurred upstream of the glacier within a short time period between January and May 2009 during the initial phase of a major glacier surge. This study is the first step towards the generation and implementation of an operational seismic monitoring strategy for glacier dynamics in Svalbard.

  18. Characterization of AhR agonists reveals antagonistic activity in European herring gull (Larus argentatus) eggs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muusse, Martine; Christensen, Guttorm; Gomes, Tânia; Kočan, Anton; Langford, Katherine; Tollefsen, Knut Erik; Vaňková, Lenka; Thomas, Kevin V

    2015-05-01

    European herring gull (Larus argentatus) eggs from two Norwegian islands, Musvær in the south east and Reiaren in Northern Norway, were screened for dioxins, furans, and dioxin-like and selected non-dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and subjected to non-target analysis to try to identify the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) agonists, responsible for elevated levels measured using the dioxin responsive chemically activated luciferase expression (DR-CALUX) assay. Eggs from Musvær contained chemically calculated toxic equivalent (WHO TEQ) levels of between 109 and 483 pg TEQ/g lw, and between 82 and 337 pg TEQ/g lw was determined in eggs from Reiaren. In particular PCB126 contributed highly to the total TEQ (69-82%). In 19 of the 23 samples the calculated WHO TEQ was higher than the TEQCALUX. Using CALUX specific relative effect potencies (REPs), the levels were lower at between 77 and 292 pg/g lw in eggs from Musvær and between 55 and 223 pg/g lw in eggs from Reiaren, which was higher than the TEQCALUX in 16 of the 23 samples. However, the means of the REP values and the TEQCALUX were not significantly different. This suggests the presence of compounds that can elicit antagonist effects, with a low binding affinity to the AhR. Non-target analysis identified the presence of hexachlorobenzene (HCB) (quantified at 9.6-185 pg/g lw) but neither this compound nor high concentrations of PCB126 and non-dioxin-like PCBs could explain the differences between the calculated TEQ or REP values and the TEQCALUX. Even though, for most AhR agonists, the sensitivity of herring gulls is not known, the reported levels can be considered to represent a risk for biological effects in the developing embryo, compared to LC50 values in chicken embryos. For human consumers of herring gull eggs, these eggs contain TEQ levels up to four times higher than the maximum tolerable weekly intake. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. 13C ENDOR Spectroscopy of Lipoxygenase-Substrate Complexes Reveals the Structural Basis for C-H Activation by Tunneling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horitani, Masaki; Offenbacher, Adam R; Carr, Cody A Marcus; Yu, Tao; Hoeke, Veronika; Cutsail, George E; Hammes-Schiffer, Sharon; Klinman, Judith P; Hoffman, Brian M

    2017-02-08

    In enzymatic C-H activation by hydrogen tunneling, reduced barrier width is important for efficient hydrogen wave function overlap during catalysis. For native enzymes displaying nonadiabatic tunneling, the dominant reactive hydrogen donor-acceptor distance (DAD) is typically ca. 2.7 Å, considerably shorter than normal van der Waals distances. Without a ground state substrate-bound structure for the prototypical nonadiabatic tunneling system, soybean lipoxygenase (SLO), it has remained unclear whether the requisite close tunneling distance occurs through an unusual ground state active site arrangement or by thermally sampling conformational substates. Herein, we introduce Mn 2+ as a spin-probe surrogate for the SLO Fe ion; X-ray diffraction shows Mn-SLO is structurally faithful to the native enzyme. 13 C ENDOR then reveals the locations of 13 C10 and reactive 13 C11 of linoleic acid relative to the metal; 1 H ENDOR and molecular dynamics simulations of the fully solvated SLO model using ENDOR-derived restraints give additional metrical information. The resulting three-dimensional representation of the SLO active site ground state contains a reactive (a) conformer with hydrogen DAD of ∼3.1 Å, approximately van der Waals contact, plus an inactive (b) conformer with even longer DAD, establishing that stochastic conformational sampling is required to achieve reactive tunneling geometries. Tunneling-impaired SLO variants show increased DADs and variations in substrate positioning and rigidity, confirming previous kinetic and theoretical predictions of such behavior. Overall, this investigation highlights the (i) predictive power of nonadiabatic quantum treatments of proton-coupled electron transfer in SLO and (ii) sensitivity of ENDOR probes to test, detect, and corroborate kinetically predicted trends in active site reactivity and to reveal unexpected features of active site architecture.

  20. Phosphoproteomic Analysis of KSHV-Infected Cells Reveals Roles of ORF45-Activated RSK during Lytic Replication.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denis Avey

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus (KSHV is an oncogenic virus which has adapted unique mechanisms to modulate the cellular microenvironment of its human host. The pathogenesis of KSHV is intimately linked to its manipulation of cellular signaling pathways, including the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK pathway. We have previously shown that KSHV ORF45 contributes to the sustained activation of both ERK and p90 ribosomal S6 kinase (RSK, a major functional mediator of ERK/MAPK signaling during KSHV lytic replication. ORF45-activated RSK is required for optimal KSHV lytic gene expression and progeny virion production, though the underlying mechanisms downstream of this activation are still unclear. We hypothesized that the activation of RSK by ORF45 causes differential phosphorylation of cellular and viral substrates, affecting biological processes essential for efficient KSHV lytic replication. Accordingly, we observed widespread and significant differences in protein phosphorylation upon induction of lytic replication. Mass-spectrometry-based phosphoproteomic screening identified putative substrates of ORF45-activated RSK in KSHV-infected cells. Bioinformatic analyses revealed that nuclear proteins, including several transcriptional regulators, were overrepresented among these candidates. We validated the ORF45/RSK-dependent phosphorylation of several putative substrates by employing KSHV BAC mutagenesis, kinase inhibitor treatments, and/or CRISPR-mediated knockout of RSK in KSHV-infected cells. Furthermore, we assessed the consequences of knocking out these substrates on ORF45/RSK-dependent regulation of gene expression and KSHV progeny virion production. Finally, we show data to support that ORF45 regulates the translational efficiency of a subset of viral/cellular genes with complex secondary structure in their 5' UTR. Altogether, these data shed light on the mechanisms by which KSHV ORF45

  1. Prognostic Value of Cortically Induced Motor Evoked Activity by TMS in Chronic Stroke: Caveats from a Revealing Single Clinical Case

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Amengual, Julià L

    2012-06-08

    AbstractBackgroundWe report the case of a chronic stroke patient (62 months after injury) showing total absence of motor activity evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of spared regions of the left motor cortex, but near-to-complete recovery of motor abilities in the affected hand.Case presentationMultimodal investigations included detailed TMS based motor mapping, motor evoked potentials (MEP), and Cortical Silent period (CSP) as well as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of motor activity, MRI based lesion analysis and Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) Tractography of corticospinal tract (CST). Anatomical analysis revealed a left hemisphere subinsular lesion interrupting the descending left CST at the level of the internal capsule. The absence of MEPs after intense TMS pulses to the ipsilesional M1, and the reversible suppression of ongoing electromyographic (EMG) activity (indexed by CSP) demonstrate a weak modulation of subcortical systems by the ipsilesional left frontal cortex, but an inability to induce efficient descending volleys from those cortical locations to right hand and forearm muscles. Functional MRI recordings under grasping and finger tapping patterns involving the affected hand showed slight signs of subcortical recruitment, as compared to the unaffected hand and hemisphere, as well as the expected cortical activations.ConclusionsThe potential sources of motor voluntary activity for the affected hand in absence of MEPs are discussed. We conclude that multimodal analysis may contribute to a more accurate prognosis of stroke patients.

  2. Prognostic value of cortically induced motor evoked activity by TMS in chronic stroke: Caveats from a revealing single clinical case

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amengual Julià L

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We report the case of a chronic stroke patient (62 months after injury showing total absence of motor activity evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS of spared regions of the left motor cortex, but near-to-complete recovery of motor abilities in the affected hand. Case presentation Multimodal investigations included detailed TMS based motor mapping, motor evoked potentials (MEP, and Cortical Silent period (CSP as well as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI of motor activity, MRI based lesion analysis and Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI Tractography of corticospinal tract (CST. Anatomical analysis revealed a left hemisphere subinsular lesion interrupting the descending left CST at the level of the internal capsule. The absence of MEPs after intense TMS pulses to the ipsilesional M1, and the reversible suppression of ongoing electromyographic (EMG activity (indexed by CSP demonstrate a weak modulation of subcortical systems by the ipsilesional left frontal cortex, but an inability to induce efficient descending volleys from those cortical locations to right hand and forearm muscles. Functional MRI recordings under grasping and finger tapping patterns involving the affected hand showed slight signs of subcortical recruitment, as compared to the unaffected hand and hemisphere, as well as the expected cortical activations. Conclusions The potential sources of motor voluntary activity for the affected hand in absence of MEPs are discussed. We conclude that multimodal analysis may contribute to a more accurate prognosis of stroke patients.

  3. Activation of acid-sensing ion channels by localized proton transient reveals their role in proton signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Wei-Zheng; Liu, Di-Shi; Liu, Lu; She, Liang; Wu, Long-Jun; Xu, Tian-Le

    2015-09-15

    Extracellular transients of pH alterations likely mediate signal transduction in the nervous system. Neuronal acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) act as sensors for extracellular protons, but the mechanism underlying ASIC activation remains largely unknown. Here, we show that, following activation of a light-activated proton pump, Archaerhodopsin-3 (Arch), proton transients induced ASIC currents in both neurons and HEK293T cells co-expressing ASIC1a channels. Using chimera proteins that bridge Arch and ASIC1a by a glycine/serine linker, we found that successful coupling occurred within 15 nm distance. Furthermore, two-cell sniffer patch recording revealed that regulated release of protons through either Arch or voltage-gated proton channel Hv1 activated neighbouring cells expressing ASIC1a channels. Finally, computational modelling predicted the peak proton concentration at the intercellular interface to be at pH 6.7, which is acidic enough to activate ASICs in vivo. Our results highlight the pathophysiological role of proton signalling in the nervous system.

  4. Mechanistic studies of anticancer aptamer AS1411 reveal a novel role for nucleolin in regulating Rac1 activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes-Reyes, E Merit; Šalipur, Francesca R; Shams, Mitra; Forsthoefel, Matthew K; Bates, Paula J

    2015-08-01

    AS1411 is a G-rich quadruplex-forming oligodeoxynucleotide that binds specifically to nucleolin, a protein found on the surface and in the cytoplasm of most malignant cells but absent from the surface/cytoplasm of most normal cells. AS1411 has shown promising clinical activity and is being widely used as a tumor-targeting agent, but its mechanism of action is not fully understood. Previously, we showed that AS1411 is taken up in cancer cells by macropinocytosis (fluid phase endocytosis) and subsequently stimulates further macropinocytosis by a nucleolin-dependent mechanism. In the current study, we have investigated the significance and molecular mechanisms of AS1411-induced macropinocytosis. Our results indicate that the antiproliferative activity of AS1411 in various cell lines correlated with its capacity to stimulate macropinocytosis. In DU145 prostate cancer cells, AS1411 induced activation of EGFR, Akt, p38, and Rac1. Activation of Akt and p38 were not critical for AS1411 activity because Akt activation was not observed in all AS1411-responsive cell lines and knockdown of p38 had no effect on AS1411's ability to inhibit proliferation. On the other hand, activation of EGFR and Rac1 appeared to play a role in AS1411 activity in all cancer cell lines examined (DU145, MDA-MB-468, A549, LNCaP) and their inhibition significantly reduced AS1411-mediated macropinocytosis and AS1411 antiproliferative activity. Interestingly, downregulation of nucleolin expression by siRNA also produced a substantial increase in activated Rac1, revealing a previously unknown role for nucleolin as a negative regulator of Rac1 activation. Our results are consistent with a model whereby AS1411 binding to nucleolin leads to sustained activation of Rac1 and causes methuosis, a novel type of nonapoptotic cell death characterized by hyperstimulation of macropinocytosis. We speculate that methuosis is a tumor/metastasis suppressor mechanism that opposes the malignant functions of Rac1 and that

  5. Glycoprotein profiles of macrophages at different stages of activation as revealed by lectin binding after electrophoretic separation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irimura, T; North, S M; Nicolson, G L

    1987-01-01

    Glycoprotein profiles of rat macrophages (M phi) at different stages of activation were studied by examining the reactivity of various lectins to the glycoproteins separated by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Ricinus communis agglutinin 1 (RCA1) revealed several components including glycoproteins of Mr 160 kDa and 65 kDa prominent in resident M phi. A pokeweed mitogen (PWM) isolectin, Pa-4, recognizes branched poly(N-acetyllactosamine)-type carbohydrate chains, and revealed a significant increase in glycoproteins of Mr ranging from 70 kDa to 150 kDa on thioglycolate-elicited M phi. Increased reactivity of PWM to thioglycolate-elicited M phi was observed by direct binding of 125I-labeled Pa-4 to intact or glutaraldehyde-fixed M phi. Histochemical staining of formaldehyde-fixed M phi in vitro with biotinylated Pa-4 was consistent with the gel analysis, that is, resident M phi had no reactivity while thioglycolate-elicited M phi showed slight reactivity. Alveolar and intratumoral M phi bound more Pa-4 than resident or thioglycolate-elicited M phi. The PWM isolectin may therefore serve as a marker for an early stage of M phi activation.

  6. Collaborative activity between parietal and dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex in dynamic spatial working memory revealed by fMRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diwadkar, V A; Carpenter, P A; Just, M A

    2000-07-01

    Functional MRI was used to determine how the constituents of the cortical network subserving dynamic spatial working memory respond to two types of increases in task complexity. Participants mentally maintained the most recent location of either one or three objects as the three objects moved discretely in either a two- or three-dimensional array. Cortical activation in the dorsolateral prefrontal (DLPFC) and the parietal cortex increased as a function of the number of object locations to be maintained and the dimensionality of the display. An analysis of the response characteristics of the individual voxels showed that a large proportion were activated only when both the variables imposed the higher level of demand. A smaller proportion were activated specifically in response to increases in task demand associated with each of the independent variables. A second experiment revealed the same effect of dimensionality in the parietal cortex when the movement of objects was signaled auditorily rather than visually, indicating that the additional representational demands induced by 3-D space are independent of input modality. The comodulation of activation in the prefrontal and parietal areas by the amount of computational demand suggests that the collaboration between areas is a basic feature underlying much of the functionality of spatial working memory. Copyright 2000 Academic Press.

  7. Structures of BmrR-Drug Complexes Reveal a Rigid Multidrug Binding Pocket And Transcription Activation Through Tyrosine Expulsion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Newberry, K.J.; Huffman, J.L.; Miller, M.C.; Vazquez-Laslop, N.; Neyfakh, A.A.; Brennan, R.G.

    2009-05-22

    BmrR is a member of the MerR family and a multidrug binding transcription factor that up-regulates the expression of the bmr multidrug efflux transporter gene in response to myriad lipophilic cationic compounds. The structural mechanism by which BmrR binds these chemically and structurally different drugs and subsequently activates transcription is poorly understood. Here, we describe the crystal structures of BmrR bound to rhodamine 6G (R6G) or berberine (Ber) and cognate DNA. These structures reveal each drug stacks against multiple aromatic residues with their positive charges most proximal to the carboxylate group of Glu-253 and that, unlike other multidrug binding pockets, that of BmrR is rigid. Substitution of Glu-253 with either alanine (E253A) or glutamine (E253Q) results in unpredictable binding affinities for R6G, Ber, and tetraphenylphosphonium. Moreover, these drug binding studies reveal that the negative charge of Glu-253 is not important for high affinity binding to Ber and tetraphenylphosphonium but plays a more significant, but unpredictable, role in R6G binding. In vitro transcription data show that E253A and E253Q are constitutively active, and structures of the drug-free E253A-DNA and E253Q-DNA complexes support a transcription activation mechanism requiring the expulsion of Tyr-152 from the multidrug binding pocket. In sum, these data delineate the mechanism by which BmrR binds lipophilic, monovalent cationic compounds and suggest the importance of the redundant negative electrostatic nature of this rigid drug binding pocket that can be used to discriminate against molecules that are not substrates of the Bmr multidrug efflux pump.

  8. Thermodynamic coupling between activation and inactivation gating in potassium channels revealed by free energy molecular dynamics simulations.

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    Pan, Albert C; Cuello, Luis G; Perozo, Eduardo; Roux, Benoît

    2011-12-01

    The amount of ionic current flowing through K(+) channels is determined by the interplay between two separate time-dependent processes: activation and inactivation gating. Activation is concerned with the stimulus-dependent opening of the main intracellular gate, whereas inactivation is a spontaneous conformational transition of the selectivity filter toward a nonconductive state occurring on a variety of timescales. A recent analysis of multiple x-ray structures of open and partially open KcsA channels revealed the mechanism by which movements of the inner activation gate, formed by the inner helices from the four subunits of the pore domain, bias the conformational changes at the selectivity filter toward a nonconductive inactivated state. This analysis highlighted the important role of Phe103, a residue located along the inner helix, near the hinge position associated with the opening of the intracellular gate. In the present study, we use free energy perturbation molecular dynamics simulations (FEP/MD) to quantitatively elucidate the thermodynamic basis for the coupling between the intracellular gate and the selectivity filter. The results of the FEP/MD calculations are in good agreement with experiments, and further analysis of the repulsive, van der Waals dispersive, and electrostatic free energy contributions reveals that the energetic basis underlying the absence of inactivation in the F103A mutation in KcsA is the absence of the unfavorable steric interaction occurring with the large Ile100 side chain in a neighboring subunit when the intracellular gate is open and the selectivity filter is in a conductive conformation. Macroscopic current analysis shows that the I100A mutant indeed relieves inactivation in KcsA, but to a lesser extent than the F103A mutant.

  9. Lasting modulation effects of rTMS on neural activity and connectivity as revealed by resting-state EEG.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Lei; Shou, Guofa; Yuan, Han; Urbano, Diamond; Cha, Yoon-Hee

    2014-07-01

    The long-lasting neuromodulatory effects of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) are of great interest for therapeutic applications in various neurological and psychiatric disorders, due to which functional connectivity among brain regions is profoundly disturbed. Classic TMS studies selectively alter neural activity in specific brain regions and observe neural activity changes on nonperturbed areas to infer underlying connectivity and its changes. Less has been indicated in direct measures of functional connectivity and/or neural network and on how connectivity/network alterations occur. Here, we developed a novel analysis framework to directly investigate both neural activity and connectivity changes induced by rTMS from resting-state EEG (rsEEG) acquired in a group of subjects with a chronic disorder of imbalance, known as the mal de debarquement syndrome (MdDS). Resting-state activity in multiple functional brain areas was identified through a data-driven blind source separation analysis on rsEEG data, and the connectivity among them was characterized using a phase synchronization measure. Our study revealed that there were significant long-lasting changes in resting-state neural activity, in theta, low alpha, and high alpha bands and neural networks in theta, low alpha, high alpha and beta bands, over broad cortical areas 4 to 5 h after the last application of rTMS in a consecutive five-day protocol. Our results of rsEEG connectivity further indicated that the changes, mainly in the alpha band, over the parietal and occipital cortices from pre- to post-TMS sessions were significantly correlated, in both magnitude and direction, to symptom changes in this group of subjects with MdDS. This connectivity measure not only suggested that rTMS can generate positive treatment effects in MdDS patients, but also revealed new potential targets for future therapeutic trials to improve treatment effects. It is promising that the new connectivity measure

  10. FRET biosensors reveal AKAP-mediated shaping of subcellular PKA activity and a novel mode of Ca(2+)/PKA crosstalk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schott, Micah B; Gonowolo, Faith; Maliske, Benjamin; Grove, Bryon

    2016-04-01

    Scaffold proteins play a critical role in cellular homeostasis by anchoring signaling enzymes in close proximity to downstream effectors. In addition to anchoring static enzyme complexes, some scaffold proteins also form dynamic signalosomes that can traffic to different subcellular compartments upon stimulation. Gravin (AKAP12), a multivalent scaffold, anchors PKA and other enzymes to the plasma membrane under basal conditions, but upon [Ca(2+)]i elevation, is rapidly redistributed to the cytosol. Because gravin redistribution also impacts PKA localization, we postulate that gravin acts as a calcium "switch" that modulates PKA-substrate interactions at the plasma membrane, thus facilitating a novel crosstalk mechanism between Ca(2+) and PKA-dependent pathways. To assess this, we measured the impact of gravin-V5/His expression on compartmentalized PKA activity using the FRET biosensor AKAR3 in cultured cells. Upon treatment with forskolin or isoproterenol, cells expressing gravin-V5/His showed elevated levels of plasma membrane PKA activity, but cytosolic PKA activity levels were reduced compared with control cells lacking gravin. This effect required both gravin interaction with PKA and localization at the plasma membrane. Pretreatment with calcium-elevating agents thapsigargin or ATP caused gravin redistribution away from the plasma membrane and prevented gravin from elevating PKA activity levels at the membrane. Importantly, this mode of Ca(2+)/PKA crosstalk was not observed in cells expressing a gravin mutant that resisted calcium-mediated redistribution from the cell periphery. These results reveal that gravin impacts subcellular PKA activity levels through the spatial targeting of PKA, and that calcium elevation modulates downstream β-adrenergic/PKA signaling through gravin redistribution, thus supporting the hypothesis that gravin mediates crosstalk between Ca(2+) and PKA-dependent signaling pathways. Based on these results, AKAP localization dynamics may

  11. FRET biosensors reveal AKAP-mediated shaping of subcellular PKA activity and a novel mode of Ca2+/PKA crosstalk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schott, Micah; Gonowolo, Faith; Maliske, Ben; Grove, Bryon

    2016-01-01

    Scaffold proteins play a critical role in cellular homeostasis by anchoring signaling enzymes in close proximity to downstream effectors. In addition to anchoring static enzyme complexes, some scaffold proteins also form dynamic signalosomes that can traffic to different subcellular compartments upon stimulation. Gravin (AKAP12), a multivalent scaffold, anchors PKA and other enzymes to the plasma membrane under basal conditions, but upon [Ca2+]i elevation, is rapidly redistributed to the cytosol. Because gravin redistribution also impacts PKA localization, we postulate that gravin acts as a calcium “switch” that modulates PKA-substrate interactions at the plasma membrane, thus facilitating a novel crosstalk mechanism between Ca2+ and PKA-dependent pathways. To assess this, we measured the impact of gravin-V5/His expression on compartmentalized PKA activity using the FRET biosensor AKAR3 in cultured cells. Upon treatment with forskolin or isoproterenol, cells expressing gravin-V5/His showed elevated levels of plasma membrane PKA activity, but cytosolic PKA activity levels were reduced compared with control cells lacking gravin. This effect required both gravin interaction with PKA and localization at the plasma membrane. Pretreatment with calcium-elevating agents thapsigargin or ATP caused gravin redistribution away from the plasma membrane and prevented gravin from elevating PKA activity levels at the membrane. Importantly, this mode of Ca2+/PKA crosstalk was not observed in cells expressing a gravin mutant that resists calcium-mediated redistribution from the cell periphery. These results reveal that gravin impacts subcellular PKA activity levels through the spatial targeting of PKA, and that calcium elevation modulates downstream β-adrenergic/PKA signaling through gravin redistribution, thus supporting the hypothesis that gravin mediates crosstalk between Ca2+ and PKA-dependent signaling pathways. Based on these results, AKAP localization dynamics may

  12. Linked functional network abnormalities during intrinsic and extrinsic activity in schizophrenia as revealed by a data-fusion approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashimoto, Ryu-Ichiro; Itahashi, Takashi; Okada, Rieko; Hasegawa, Sayaka; Tani, Masayuki; Kato, Nobumasa; Mimura, Masaru

    2018-01-01

    Abnormalities in functional brain networks in schizophrenia have been studied by examining intrinsic and extrinsic brain activity under various experimental paradigms. However, the identified patterns of abnormal functional connectivity (FC) vary depending on the adopted paradigms. Thus, it is unclear whether and how these patterns are inter-related. In order to assess relationships between abnormal patterns of FC during intrinsic activity and those during extrinsic activity, we adopted a data-fusion approach and applied partial least square (PLS) analyses to FC datasets from 25 patients with chronic schizophrenia and 25 age- and sex-matched normal controls. For the input to the PLS analyses, we generated a pair of FC maps during the resting state (REST) and the auditory deviance response (ADR) from each participant using the common seed region in the left middle temporal gyrus, which is a focus of activity associated with auditory verbal hallucinations (AVHs). PLS correlation (PLS-C) analysis revealed that patients with schizophrenia have significantly lower loadings of a component containing positive FCs in default-mode network regions during REST and a component containing positive FCs in the auditory and attention-related networks during ADR. Specifically, loadings of the REST component were significantly correlated with the severities of positive symptoms and AVH in patients with schizophrenia. The co-occurrence of such altered FC patterns during REST and ADR was replicated using PLS regression, wherein FC patterns during REST are modeled to predict patterns during ADR. These findings provide an integrative understanding of altered FCs during intrinsic and extrinsic activity underlying core schizophrenia symptoms.

  13. Structure of the CaMKIIdelta/calmodulin complex reveals the molecular mechanism of CaMKII kinase activation.

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    Peter Rellos

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Long-term potentiation (LTP, a long-lasting enhancement in communication between neurons, is considered to be the major cellular mechanism underlying learning and memory. LTP triggers high-frequency calcium pulses that result in the activation of Calcium/Calmodulin (CaM-dependent kinase II (CaMKII. CaMKII acts as a molecular switch because it remains active for a long time after the return to basal calcium levels, which is a unique property required for CaMKII function. Here we describe the crystal structure of the human CaMKIIdelta/Ca2+/CaM complex, structures of all four human CaMKII catalytic domains in their autoinhibited states, as well as structures of human CaMKII oligomerization domains in their tetradecameric and physiological dodecameric states. All four autoinhibited human CaMKIIs were monomeric in the determined crystal structures but associated weakly in solution. In the CaMKIIdelta/Ca2+/CaM complex, the inhibitory region adopted an extended conformation and interacted with an adjacent catalytic domain positioning T287 into the active site of the interacting protomer. Comparisons with autoinhibited CaMKII structures showed that binding of calmodulin leads to the rearrangement of residues in the active site to a conformation suitable for ATP binding and to the closure of the binding groove for the autoinhibitory helix by helix alphaD. The structural data, together with biophysical interaction studies, reveals the mechanism of CaMKII activation by calmodulin and explains many of the unique regulatory properties of these two essential signaling molecules.This article can also be viewed as an enhanced version in which the text of the article is integrated with interactive 3-D representations and animated transitions. Please note that a web plugin is required to access this enhanced functionality. Instructions for the installation and use of the Web plugin are available in Text S1.

  14. Mutational analysis of an archaeal minichromosome maintenance protein exterior hairpin reveals critical residues for helicase activity and DNA binding

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    Brewster Aaron S

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The mini-chromosome maintenance protein (MCM complex is an essential replicative helicase for DNA replication in Archaea and Eukaryotes. While the eukaryotic complex consists of six homologous proteins (MCM2-7, the archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus has only one MCM protein (ssoMCM, six subunits of which form a homohexamer. We have recently reported a 4.35Å crystal structure of the near full-length ssoMCM. The structure reveals a total of four β-hairpins per subunit, three of which are located within the main channel or side channels of the ssoMCM hexamer model generated based on the symmetry of the N-terminal Methanothermobacter thermautotrophicus (mtMCM structure. The fourth β-hairpin, however, is located on the exterior of the hexamer, near the exit of the putative side channels and next to the ATP binding pocket. Results In order to better understand this hairpin's role in DNA binding and helicase activity, we performed a detailed mutational and biochemical analysis of nine residues on this exterior β-hairpin (EXT-hp. We examined the activities of the mutants related to their helicase function, including hexamerization, ATPase, DNA binding and helicase activities. The assays showed that some of the residues on this EXT-hp play a role for DNA binding as well as for helicase activity. Conclusions These results implicate several current theories regarding helicase activity by this critical hexameric enzyme. As the data suggest that EXT-hp is involved in DNA binding, the results reported here imply that the EXT-hp located near the exterior exit of the side channels may play a role in contacting DNA substrate in a manner that affects DNA unwinding.

  15. Structural Snapshots of an Engineered Cystathionine-γ-lyase Reveal the Critical Role of Electrostatic Interactions in the Active Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yan, Wupeng; Stone, Everett; Zhang, Yan Jessie

    2017-02-01

    Enzyme therapeutics that can degrade l-methionine (l-Met) are of great interest as numerous malignancies are exquisitely sensitive to l-Met depletion. To exhaust the pool of methionine in human serum, we previously engineered an l-Met-degrading enzyme based on the human cystathionine-γ-lyase scaffold (hCGL-NLV) to circumvent immunogenicity and stability issues observed in the preclinical application of bacterially derived methionine-γ-lyases. To gain further insights into the structure–activity relationships governing the chemistry of the hCGL-NLV lead molecule, we undertook a biophysical characterization campaign that captured crystal structures (2.2 Å) of hCGL-NLV with distinct reaction intermediates, including internal aldimine, substrate-bound, gem-diamine, and external aldimine forms. Curiously, an alternate form of hCGL-NLV that crystallized under higher-salt conditions revealed a locally unfolded active site, correlating with inhibition of activity as a function of ionic strength. Subsequent mutational and kinetic experiments pinpointed that a salt bridge between the phosphate of the essential cofactor pyridoxal 5'-phosphate (PLP) and residue R62 plays an important role in catalyzing β- and γ-eliminations. Our study suggests that solvent ions such as NaCl disrupt electrostatic interactions between R62 and PLP, decreasing catalytic efficiency.

  16. Domain activities of PapC usher reveal the mechanism of action of an Escherichia coli molecular machine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volkan, Ender; Ford, Bradley A; Pinkner, Jerome S; Dodson, Karen W; Henderson, Nadine S; Thanassi, David G; Waksman, Gabriel; Hultgren, Scott J

    2012-06-12

    P pili are prototypical chaperone-usher pathway-assembled pili used by Gram-negative bacteria to adhere to host tissues. The PapC usher contains five functional domains: a transmembrane β-barrel, a β-sandwich Plug, an N-terminal (periplasmic) domain (NTD), and two C-terminal (periplasmic) domains, CTD1 and CTD2. Here, we delineated usher domain interactions between themselves and with chaperone-subunit complexes and showed that overexpression of individual usher domains inhibits pilus assembly. Prior work revealed that the Plug domain occludes the pore of the transmembrane domain of a solitary usher, but the chaperone-adhesin-bound usher has its Plug displaced from the pore, adjacent to the NTD. We demonstrate an interaction between the NTD and Plug domains that suggests a biophysical basis for usher gating. Furthermore, we found that the NTD exhibits high-affinity binding to the chaperone-adhesin (PapDG) complex and low-affinity binding to the major tip subunit PapE (PapDE). We also demonstrate that CTD2 binds with lower affinity to all tested chaperone-subunit complexes except for the chaperone-terminator subunit (PapDH) and has a catalytic role in dissociating the NTD-PapDG complex, suggesting an interplay between recruitment to the NTD and transfer to CTD2 during pilus initiation. The Plug domain and the NTD-Plug complex bound all of the chaperone-subunit complexes tested including PapDH, suggesting that the Plug actively recruits chaperone-subunit complexes to the usher and is the sole recruiter of PapDH. Overall, our studies reveal the cooperative, active roles played by periplasmic domains of the usher to initiate, grow, and terminate a prototypical chaperone-usher pathway pilus.

  17. Transcriptome Analysis Reveals Markers of Aberrantly Activated Innate Immunity in Vitiligo Lesional and Non-Lesional Skin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yuanshen; Wang, Yang; Yu, Jie; Gao, Min; Levings, Megan; Wei, Shencai; Zhang, Shengquan; Xu, Aie; Su, Mingwan; Dutz, Jan; Zhang, Xuejun; Zhou, Youwen

    2012-01-01

    Background Vitiligo is characterized by the death of melanocytes in the skin. This is associated with the presence of T cell infiltrates in the lesional borders. However, at present, there is no detailed and systematic characterization on whether additional cellular or molecular changes are present inside vitiligo lesions. Further, it is unknown if the normal appearing non-lesional skin of vitiligo patients is in fact normal. The purpose of this study is to systematically characterize the molecular and cellular characteristics of the lesional and non-lesional skin of vitiligo patients. Methods and Materials Paired lesional and non-lesional skin biopsies from twenty-three vitiligo patients and normal skin biopsies from sixteen healthy volunteers were obtained with informed consent. The following aspects were analyzed: (1) transcriptome changes present in vitiligo skin using DNA microarrays and qRT-PCR; (2) abnormal cellular infiltrates in vitiligo skin explant cultures using flow cytometry; and (3) distribution of the abnormal cellular infiltrates in vitiligo skin using immunofluorescence microscopy. Results Compared with normal skin, vitiligo lesional skin contained 17 genes (mostly melanocyte-specific genes) whose expression was decreased or absent. In contrast, the relative expression of 13 genes was up-regulated. The up-regulated genes point to aberrant activity of the innate immune system, especially natural killer cells in vitiligo. Strikingly, the markers of heightened innate immune responses were also found to be up-regulated in the non-lesional skin of vitiligo patients. Conclusions and Clinical Implications As the first systematic transcriptome characterization of the skin in vitiligo patients, this study revealed previously unknown molecular markers that strongly suggest aberrant innate immune activation in the microenvironment of vitiligo skin. Since these changes involve both lesional and non-lesional skin, our results suggest that therapies targeting

  18. Right and left amygdalae activation in patients with major depression receiving antidepressant treatment, as revealed by fMRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yen-Ting; Huang, Min-Wei; Hung, I-Chung; Lane, Hsien-Yuan; Hou, Chun-Ju

    2014-10-08

    A differential contribution of the right and left amygdalae to affective information processing has been proposed. However, the direction of this lateralization has not been confirmed. In this study, we used a pre- and post-treatment (escitalopram) design to analyze the relative differences between neural activity in the right and left amygdalae during exposure to emotional stimuli in currently depressed patients. To the best of our knowledge, this study is to compare neural activity between the left and right amygdalae in people with depression. Our findings could lead to the development of parameters or biomarkers for depressive symptoms and treatment response. We used a pre-post-test design without a control group. Twenty currently depressed participants underwent an emotion processing task during fMRI. These participants were then treated with an antidepressant for 6 weeks. We used amygdala region-of-interest analysis to evaluate the hemodynamic response during exposure to colored emotional pictures. In total, thirteen of the 20 participants were placed into a separate group based on degree of response to antidepressants. The partial response group had an averaged HDRS score of 10.75 ± 2.25 and an averaged DBOLDLR signal of 189.18 ± 140.23 (m1 = 8), and the remitted group had an averaged HDRS score of 4.80 ± 1.64 and an averaged DBOLDLR signal of 421.26 ± 109.19 (m2 = 5). Each individual had lateralized amygdala activity, and the direction of asymmetry persisted following treatment. Amygdala responses to four types of emotional stimuli did not significantly change (p > 0.05) with treatment in either the right or the left amygdala. However, the difference in neural activity between the right and left amygdalae was greater after treatment, and the variation in neural activity was larger in the left amygdala. We found that the response between the right and left amygdala did not differ in terms of time series, although activity increased after pharmaceutical

  19. Transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in the lizard Anolis carolinensis reveals activation of conserved vertebrate developmental and repair mechanisms.

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    Elizabeth D Hutchins

    Full Text Available Lizards, which are amniote vertebrates like humans, are able to lose and regenerate a functional tail. Understanding the molecular basis of this process would advance regenerative approaches in amniotes, including humans. We have carried out the first transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in a lizard, the green anole Anolis carolinensis, which revealed 326 differentially expressed genes activating multiple developmental and repair mechanisms. Specifically, genes involved in wound response, hormonal regulation, musculoskeletal development, and the Wnt and MAPK/FGF pathways were differentially expressed along the regenerating tail axis. Furthermore, we identified 2 microRNA precursor families, 22 unclassified non-coding RNAs, and 3 novel protein-coding genes significantly enriched in the regenerating tail. However, high levels of progenitor/stem cell markers were not observed in any region of the regenerating tail. Furthermore, we observed multiple tissue-type specific clusters of proliferating cells along the regenerating tail, not localized to the tail tip. These findings predict a different mechanism of regeneration in the lizard than the blastema model described in the salamander and the zebrafish, which are anamniote vertebrates. Thus, lizard tail regrowth involves the activation of conserved developmental and wound response pathways, which are potential targets for regenerative medical therapies.

  20. Near scale-free dynamics in neural population activity of waking/sleeping rats revealed by multiscale analysis.

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    Leonid A Safonov

    Full Text Available A neuron embedded in an intact brain, unlike an isolated neuron, participates in network activity at various spatial resolutions. Such multiple scale spatial dynamics is potentially reflected in multiple time scales of temporal dynamics. We identify such multiple dynamical time scales of the inter-spike interval (ISI fluctuations of neurons of waking/sleeping rats by means of multiscale analysis. The time scale of large non-Gaussianity in the ISI fluctuations, measured with the Castaing method, ranges up to several minutes, markedly escaping the low-pass filtering characteristics of neurons. A comparison between neural activity during waking and sleeping reveals that non-Gaussianity is stronger during waking than sleeping throughout the entire range of scales observed. We find a remarkable property of near scale independence of the magnitude correlations as the primary cause of persistent non-Gaussianity. Such scale-invariance of correlations is characteristic of multiplicative cascade processes and raises the possibility of the existence of a scale independent memory preserving mechanism.

  1. Structure-Activity Relationship and Molecular Mechanics Reveal the Importance of Ring Entropy in the Biosynthesis and Activity of a Natural Product.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Hai L; Lexa, Katrina W; Julien, Olivier; Young, Travis S; Walsh, Christopher T; Jacobson, Matthew P; Wells, James A

    2017-02-22

    Macrocycles are appealing drug candidates due to their high affinity, specificity, and favorable pharmacological properties. In this study, we explored the effects of chemical modifications to a natural product macrocycle upon its activity, 3D geometry, and conformational entropy. We chose thiocillin as a model system, a thiopeptide in the ribosomally encoded family of natural products that exhibits potent antimicrobial effects against Gram-positive bacteria. Since thiocillin is derived from a genetically encoded peptide scaffold, site-directed mutagenesis allows for rapid generation of analogues. To understand thiocillin's structure-activity relationship, we generated a site-saturation mutagenesis library covering each position along thiocillin's macrocyclic ring. We report the identification of eight unique compounds more potent than wild-type thiocillin, the best having an 8-fold improvement in potency. Computational modeling of thiocillin's macrocyclic structure revealed a striking requirement for a low-entropy macrocycle for activity. The populated ensembles of the active mutants showed a rigid structure with few adoptable conformations while inactive mutants showed a more flexible macrocycle which is unfavorable for binding. This finding highlights the importance of macrocyclization in combination with rigidifying post-translational modifications to achieve high-potency binding.

  2. Characterization of the active microbiotas associated with honey bees reveals healthier and broader communities when colonies are genetically diverse.

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    Heather R Mattila

    Full Text Available Recent losses of honey bee colonies have led to increased interest in the microbial communities that are associated with these important pollinators. A critical function that bacteria perform for their honey bee hosts, but one that is poorly understood, is the transformation of worker-collected pollen into bee bread, a nutritious food product that can be stored for long periods in colonies. We used 16S rRNA pyrosequencing to comprehensively characterize in genetically diverse and genetically uniform colonies the active bacterial communities that are found on honey bees, in their digestive tracts, and in bee bread. This method provided insights that have not been revealed by past studies into the content and benefits of honey bee-associated microbial communities. Colony microbiotas differed substantially between sampling environments and were dominated by several anaerobic bacterial genera never before associated with honey bees, but renowned for their use by humans to ferment food. Colonies with genetically diverse populations of workers, a result of the highly promiscuous mating behavior of queens, benefited from greater microbial diversity, reduced pathogen loads, and increased abundance of putatively helpful bacteria, particularly species from the potentially probiotic genus Bifidobacterium. Across all colonies, Bifidobacterium activity was negatively correlated with the activity of genera that include pathogenic microbes; this relationship suggests a possible target for understanding whether microbes provide protective benefits to honey bees. Within-colony diversity shapes microbiotas associated with honey bees in ways that may have important repercussions for colony function and health. Our findings illuminate the importance of honey bee-bacteria symbioses and examine their intersection with nutrition, pathogen load, and genetic diversity, factors that are considered key to understanding honey bee decline.

  3. The early asthmatic response is associated with glycolysis, calcium binding and mitochondria activity as revealed by proteomic analysis in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xu Yu-Dong

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The inhalation of allergens by allergic asthmatics results in the early asthmatic response (EAR, which is characterized by acute airway obstruction beginning within a few minutes. The EAR is the earliest indicator of the pathological progression of allergic asthma. Because the molecular mechanism underlying the EAR is not fully defined, this study will contribute to a better understanding of asthma. Methods In order to gain insight into the molecular basis of the EAR, we examined changes in protein expression patterns in the lung tissue of asthmatic rats during the EAR using 2-DE/MS-based proteomic techniques. Bioinformatic analysis of the proteomic data was then performed using PPI Spider and KEGG Spider to investigate the underlying molecular mechanism. Results In total, 44 differentially expressed protein spots were detected in the 2-DE gels. Of these 44 protein spots, 42 corresponded to 36 unique proteins successfully identified using mass spectrometry. During subsequent bioinformatic analysis, the gene ontology classification, the protein-protein interaction networking and the biological pathway exploration demonstrated that the identified proteins were mainly involved in glycolysis, calcium binding and mitochondrial activity. Using western blot and semi-quantitative RT-PCR, we confirmed the changes in expression of five selected proteins, which further supports our proteomic and bioinformatic analyses. Conclusions Our results reveal that the allergen-induced EAR in asthmatic rats is associated with glycolysis, calcium binding and mitochondrial activity, which could establish a functional network in which calcium binding may play a central role in promoting the progression of asthma.

  4. Transcriptional response of zebrafish embryos exposed to neurotoxic compounds reveals a muscle activity dependent hspb11 expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nils Klüver

    Full Text Available Acetylcholinesterase (AChE inhibitors are widely used as pesticides and drugs. Their primary effect is the overstimulation of cholinergic receptors which results in an improper muscular function. During vertebrate embryonic development nerve activity and intracellular downstream events are critical for the regulation of muscle fiber formation. Whether AChE inhibitors and related neurotoxic compounds also provoke specific changes in gene transcription patterns during vertebrate development that allow them to establish a mechanistic link useful for identification of developmental toxicity pathways has, however, yet not been investigated. Therefore we examined the transcriptomic response of a known AChE inhibitor, the organophosphate azinphos-methyl (APM, in zebrafish embryos and compared the response with two non-AChE inhibiting unspecific control compounds, 1,4-dimethoxybenzene (DMB and 2,4-dinitrophenol (DNP. A highly specific cluster of APM induced gene transcripts was identified and a subset of strongly regulated genes was analyzed in more detail. The small heat shock protein hspb11 was found to be the most sensitive induced gene in response to AChE inhibitors. Comparison of expression in wildtype, ache and sop(fixe mutant embryos revealed that hspb11 expression was dependent on the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR activity. Furthermore, modulators of intracellular calcium levels within the whole embryo led to a transcriptional up-regulation of hspb11 which suggests that elevated intracellular calcium levels may regulate the expression of this gene. During early zebrafish development, hspb11 was specifically expressed in muscle pioneer cells and Hspb11 morpholino-knockdown resulted in effects on slow muscle myosin organization. Our findings imply that a comparative toxicogenomic approach and functional analysis can lead to the identification of molecular mechanisms and specific marker genes for potential neurotoxic compounds.

  5. Protein expression profiling of inflammatory mediators in human temporal lobe epilepsy reveals co-activation of multiple chemokines and cytokines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kan Anne A

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (mTLE is a chronic and often treatment-refractory brain disorder characterized by recurrent seizures originating from the hippocampus. The pathogenic mechanisms underlying mTLE remain largely unknown. Recent clinical and experimental evidence supports a role of various inflammatory mediators in mTLE. Here, we performed protein expression profiling of 40 inflammatory mediators in surgical resection material from mTLE patients with and without hippocampal sclerosis, and autopsy controls using a multiplex bead-based immunoassay. In mTLE patients we identified 21 upregulated inflammatory mediators, including 10 cytokines and 7 chemokines. Many of these upregulated mediators have not previously been implicated in mTLE (for example, CCL22, IL-7 and IL-25. Comparing the three patient groups, two main hippocampal expression patterns could be distinguished, pattern I (for example, IL-10 and IL-25 showing increased expression in mTLE + HS patients compared to mTLE-HS and controls, and pattern II (for example, CCL4 and IL-7 showing increased expression in both mTLE groups compared to controls. Upregulation of a subset of inflammatory mediators (for example, IL-25 and IL-7 could not only be detected in the hippocampus of mTLE patients, but also in the neocortex. Principle component analysis was used to cluster the inflammatory mediators into several components. Follow-up analyses of the identified components revealed that the three patient groups could be discriminated based on their unique expression profiles. Immunocytochemistry showed that IL-25 IR (pattern I and CCL4 IR (pattern II were localized in astrocytes and microglia, whereas IL-25 IR was also detected in neurons. Our data shows co-activation of multiple inflammatory mediators in hippocampus and neocortex of mTLE patients, indicating activation of multiple pro- and anti-epileptogenic immune pathways in this disease.

  6. Structure of unliganded HSV gD reveals a mechanism for receptor-mediated activation of virus entry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Krummenacher, Claude; Supekar, Vinit M.; Whitbeck, J. Charles; Lazear, Eric; Connolly, Sarah A.; Eisenberg, Roselyn J.; Cohen, Gary H.; Wiley, Don C.; Carfi, Andrea (UPENN); (IRBM); (CHLMM)

    2010-07-19

    Herpes simplex virus (HSV) entry into cells requires binding of the envelope glycoprotein D (gD) to one of several cell surface receptors. The 50 C-terminal residues of the gD ectodomain are essential for virus entry, but not for receptor binding. We have determined the structure of an unliganded gD molecule that includes these C-terminal residues. The structure reveals that the C-terminus is anchored near the N-terminal region and masks receptor-binding sites. Locking the C-terminus in the position observed in the crystals by an intramolecular disulfide bond abolished receptor binding and virus entry, demonstrating that this region of gD moves upon receptor binding. Similarly, a point mutant that would destabilize the C-terminus structure was nonfunctional for entry, despite increased affinity for receptors. We propose that a controlled displacement of the gD C-terminus upon receptor binding is an essential feature of HSV entry, ensuring the timely activation of membrane fusion.

  7. Culture-Independent Analyses Reveal Novel Anaerolineaceae as Abundant Primary Fermenters in Anaerobic Digesters Treating Waste Activated Sludge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon J. McIlroy

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Anaerobic digestion for biogas production is reliant on the tightly coupled synergistic activities of complex microbial consortia. Members of the uncultured A6 phylotype, within the phylum Chloroflexi, are among the most abundant genus-level-taxa of mesophilic anaerobic digester systems treating primary and surplus sludge from wastewater treatment plants, yet are known only by their 16S rRNA gene sequence. This study applied metagenomics to obtain a complete circular genome (2.57 Mbp from a representative of the A6 taxon. Preliminary annotation of the genome indicates these organisms to be anaerobic chemoorganoheterotrophs with a fermentative metabolism. Given their observed abundance, they are likely important primary fermenters in digester systems. Application of fluorescence in situ hybridisation probes designed in this study revealed their morphology to be short filaments present within the flocs. The A6 were sometimes co-located with the filamentous Archaea Methanosaeta spp. suggesting potential undetermined synergistic relationships. Based on its genome sequence and morphology we propose the species name Brevefilum fermentans gen. nov. sp. nov.

  8. Functional MRI examination of empathy for pain in people with schizophrenia reveals abnormal activation related to cognitive perspective-taking but typical activation linked to affective sharing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vistoli, Damien; Lavoie, Marie-Audrey; Sutliff, Stephanie; Jackson, Philip L.; Achim, Amélie M.

    2017-01-01

    Background Schizophrenia is associated with important disturbances in empathy that are related to everyday functioning. Empathy is classically defined as including affective (sharing others’ emotions) and cognitive (taking others’ cognitive perspectives) processes. In healthy individuals, studies on empathy for pain revealed specific brain systems associated with these sets of processes, notably the anterior middle cingulate (aMCC) and anterior insula (AI) for affective sharing and the bilateral temporoparietal junction (TPJ) for the cognitive processes, but the integrity of these systems in patients with schizophrenia remains uncertain. Methods Patients with schizophrenia and healthy controls performed a pain empathy task while undergoing fMRI scanning. Participants observed pictures of hands in either painful or nonpainful situations and rated the level of pain while imagining either themselves (self) or an unknown person (other) in these situations. Results We included 27 patients with schizophrenia and 21 healthy controls in our analyses. For the pain versus no pain contrast, patients showed overall typical activation patterns in the aMCC and AI, with only a small part of the aMCC showing reduced activation compared with controls. For the other versus self contrast, patients showed an abnormal modulation of activation in the TPJ bilaterally (extending to the posterior superior temporal sulcus, referred to as the TPJ/pSTS). Limitations The design included an unnecessary manipulation of the visual perspective that reduced the number of trials for analysis. The sample size may not account for the heterogeneity of schizophrenia. Conclusion People with schizophrenia showed relatively intact brain activation when observing others’ pain, but showed abnormalities when asked to take the cognitive perspectives of others. PMID:28556774

  9. Fluid escape structures in the Graham Bank region (Sicily Channel, Central Mediterranean) revealing volcanic and neotectonic activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spatola, Daniele; Pennino, Valentina; Basilone, Luca; Interbartolo, Francesco; Micallef, Aaron; Sulli, Attilio; Basilone, Walter

    2016-04-01

    morphometric analysis of these volcanoes has been conducted: they are up to about 115-160 m high and 500-1500 m wide. Most of them show very strongly inclined flanks with 30° of average slope. The SCV2 and SCV3 form the Graham Bank, 3.5X2.8 km wide, elongated in the NW-SE direction. At the top of SCV2 focused seepage plumes were observed in the entire water column, through the CHIRP data, where we calculated that they release, a volume of about 10950 m3 and 43960 m3of gases, respectively. In this work, we present the first results of a data collection that have got as main result the identification and mapping of the fluid escape structures revealing the relationship between the active tectonic with migration of fluids, to be used to assess the Submarine Geo-Hazard in the Sicily Channel. We identified two fluid escape fields whose genesis and evolution appear linked to the neotectonic and volcanic activities respectively, that represent the main controlling factors for the migration of fluid; considering the good correlation between pockmarks and the main identified fault systems. In conclusion, our results suggest that the degassing of fluids in this region is rooted at depth, and is mainly aligned with the NW-SE dip/strike slip fault systems, repeatedly reactivated, and linked to the volcanic activity.

  10. Decomposition of BOLD Activity into Tuned and Untuned Components Reveals Cohabitation of Stimulus and Choice Information in V1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyoung Whan Choe

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies on V1 report top-down modulation of input-driven responses of sensory neurons, implying that exogenous sensory drives and endogenous top-down drives jointly determine V1 responses. By measuring fMRI responses in conjunction with a classification task on ambiguous ring stimuli, we sought to understand how V1 carries out its encoding operation on afferent currents while being adaptively modulated by top-down currents associated with perceptual tasks. Population activity of V1, as in its raw eccentricity profiles, failed to resolve the threshold differences between the ring stimuli due to large moment-to-moment fluctuations. The analysis of variance indicated that stimulus-evoked responses explain only one-fifth of the total variance and fMRI responses were highly correlated among eccentricity-bins, implying that a substantial fraction of V1 responses fluctuate as a whole. This led us to decompose the raw fMRI responses into untuned and tuned components: average response across eccentricity-bins and residual responses from the average, respectively, the former varying only in time and the latter varying in both space and time. The tuned responses revealed the veridical encoding operation of V1 by readily distinguishing between the ring stimuli, which was impossible with the raw fMRI responses. In contrast, the untuned were correlated with two major aspects of choice behavior—inter-trial variability in response time and inter-subject variability in response bias. We propose that this cohabitation of stimulus and choice information in V1 indicates the presence of top-down exertion of gain modulation on the early processing stage by the high-tier stage that accumulates evidence for perceptual choices.

  11. Representing Microbial Dormancy in Soil Decomposition Models Improves Model Performance and Reveals Key Ecosystem Controls on Microbial Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Y.; Yang, J.; Zhuang, Q.; Wang, G.; Liu, Y.

    2014-12-01

    Climate feedbacks from soils can result from environmental change and subsequent responses of plant and microbial communities and nutrient cycling. Explicit consideration of microbial life history traits and strategy may be necessary to predict climate feedbacks due to microbial physiology and community changes and their associated effect on carbon cycling. In this study, we developed an explicit microbial-enzyme decomposition model and examined model performance with and without representation of dormancy at six temperate forest sites with observed soil efflux ranged from 4 to 10 years across different forest types. We then extrapolated the model to all temperate forests in the Northern Hemisphere (25-50°N) to investigate spatial controls on microbial and soil C dynamics. Both models captured the observed soil heterotrophic respiration (RH), yet no-dormancy model consistently exhibited large seasonal amplitude and overestimation in microbial biomass. Spatially, the total RH from temperate forests based on dormancy model amounts to 6.88PgC/yr, and 7.99PgC/yr based on no-dormancy model. However, no-dormancy model notably overestimated the ratio of microbial biomass to SOC. Spatial correlation analysis revealed key controls of soil C:N ratio on the active proportion of microbial biomass, whereas local dormancy is primarily controlled by soil moisture and temperature, indicating scale-dependent environmental and biotic controls on microbial and SOC dynamics. These developments should provide essential support to modeling future soil carbon dynamics and enhance the avenue for collaboration between empirical soil experiment and modeling in the sense that more microbial physiological measurements are needed to better constrain and evaluate the models.

  12. Meta-analysis reveals an association between signal transducer and activator of transcription-4 polymorphism and hepatocellular carcinoma risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Li; Xu, Kuihua; Liu, Chuanmiao; Chen, Jiasheng

    2017-03-01

    Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most common causes of cancer-related mortality worldwide. Signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) proteins play a multitude of important functions in liver pathophysiology. Recent studies have indicated associations of rs7574865 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the STAT4 gene with various autoimmune diseases. The association between STAT4 polymorphism and the risk of HCC has been analyzed in several studies, but results remain inconsistent. This study used a meta-analysis approach to comprehensively investigate the correlation between STAT4 polymorphism and HCC risk based on previously published reports. Studies were searched from the databases of PubMed, EMBase, Web of Science, and the Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure up to 31 December 2015. The meta-analysis was carried out based on the statement of Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses. Eight published studies, consisting of 7503 HCC patients (cases) and 13 831 individuals without HCC (controls), were included in the present study. Meta-analysis of the included studies revealed that STAT4 rs7574865 polymorphism contributed to the risk of HCC under all four genetic models, consisting of the allelic model (G vs. T: odds ratio [OR], 1.25; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.19-1.30), the dominant effect model (GG + GT vs. TT: OR, 1.52; 95% CI, 1.26-1.84), the recessive effect model (GG vs. GT + TT: OR, 1.35; 95% CI, 1.21-1.50), and the co-dominant effect model (GG vs.. TT: OR, 1.72; 95% CI, 1.42-2.10) comparisons. No publication bias was indicated from either visualization of the funnel plot or Egger's test. A significantly increased risk of HCC associated with the rs7574865 G was found. The rs7574865 polymorphism might be used as one risk factor for HCC. © 2016 The Japan Society of Hepatology.

  13. Crystal Structure of PKG I:cGMP Complex Reveals a cGMP-Mediated Dimeric Interface that Facilitates cGMP-Induced Activation

    KAUST Repository

    Kim, Jeong Joo

    2016-04-09

    Cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP)-dependent protein kinase (PKG) is a key regulator of smooth muscle and vascular tone and represents an important drug target for treating hypertensive diseases and erectile dysfunction. Despite its importance, its activation mechanism is not fully understood. To understand the activation mechanism, we determined a 2.5 Å crystal structure of the PKG I regulatory (R) domain bound with cGMP, which represents the activated state. Although we used a monomeric domain for crystallization, the structure reveals that two R domains form a symmetric dimer where the cGMP bound at high-affinity pockets provide critical dimeric contacts. Small-angle X-ray scattering and mutagenesis support this dimer model, suggesting that the dimer interface modulates kinase activation. Finally, structural comparison with the homologous cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase reveals that PKG is drastically different from protein kinase A in its active conformation, suggesting a novel activation mechanism for PKG. Kim et al. obtain the first crystal structure of the PKG I R domain bound with cGMP representing its activated state. It reveals a symmetric R dimer where cGMP molecules provide dimeric contacts. This R-R interaction prevents the high-affinity inhibitory interaction between R-C domain and sustains activation. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Crystal Structure of PKG I:cGMP Complex Reveals a cGMP-Mediated Dimeric Interface that Facilitates cGMP-Induced Activation

    KAUST Repository

    Kim, Jeong  Joo; Lorenz, Robin; Arold, Stefan T.; Reger, Albert  S.; Sankaran, Banumathi; Casteel, Darren  E.; Herberg, Friedrich  W.; Kim, Choel

    2016-01-01

    Cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP)-dependent protein kinase (PKG) is a key regulator of smooth muscle and vascular tone and represents an important drug target for treating hypertensive diseases and erectile dysfunction. Despite its importance, its activation mechanism is not fully understood. To understand the activation mechanism, we determined a 2.5 Å crystal structure of the PKG I regulatory (R) domain bound with cGMP, which represents the activated state. Although we used a monomeric domain for crystallization, the structure reveals that two R domains form a symmetric dimer where the cGMP bound at high-affinity pockets provide critical dimeric contacts. Small-angle X-ray scattering and mutagenesis support this dimer model, suggesting that the dimer interface modulates kinase activation. Finally, structural comparison with the homologous cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase reveals that PKG is drastically different from protein kinase A in its active conformation, suggesting a novel activation mechanism for PKG. Kim et al. obtain the first crystal structure of the PKG I R domain bound with cGMP representing its activated state. It reveals a symmetric R dimer where cGMP molecules provide dimeric contacts. This R-R interaction prevents the high-affinity inhibitory interaction between R-C domain and sustains activation. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd.

  15. Genetically encoded pH-indicators reveal activity-dependent cytosolic acidification of Drosophila motor nerve termini in vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossano, Adam J; Chouhan, Amit K; Macleod, Gregory T

    2013-01-01

    All biochemical processes, including those underlying synaptic function and plasticity, are pH sensitive. Cytosolic pH (pHcyto) shifts are known to accompany nerve activity in situ, but technological limitations have prevented characterization of such shifts in vivo. Genetically encoded pH-indicators (GEpHIs) allow for tissue-specific in vivo measurement of pH. We expressed three different GEpHIs in the cytosol of Drosophila larval motor neurons and observed substantial presynaptic acidification in nerve termini during nerve stimulation in situ. SuperEcliptic pHluorin was the most useful GEpHI for studying pHcyto shifts in this model system. We determined the resting pH of the nerve terminal cytosol to be 7.30 ± 0.02, and observed a decrease of 0.16 ± 0.01 pH units when the axon was stimulated at 40 Hz for 4 s. Realkalinization occurred upon cessation of stimulation with a time course of 20.54 ± 1.05 s (τ). The chemical pH-indicator 2′,7′-bis-(2-carboxyethyl)-5-(and-6)-carboxyfluorescein corroborated these changes in pHcyto. Bicarbonate-derived buffering did not contribute to buffering of acid loads from short (≤4 s) trains of action potentials but did buffer slow (∼60 s) acid loads. The magnitude of cytosolic acid transients correlated with cytosolic Ca2+ increase upon stimulation, and partial inhibition of the plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase, a Ca2+/H+ exchanger, attenuated pHcyto shifts. Repeated stimulus trains mimicking motor patterns generated greater cytosolic acidification (∼0.30 pH units). Imaging through the cuticle of intact larvae revealed spontaneous pHcyto shifts in presynaptic termini in vivo, similar to those seen in situ during fictive locomotion, indicating that presynaptic pHcyto shifts cannot be dismissed as artifacts of ex vivo preparations. PMID:23401611

  16. Optogenetic Inhibition Reveals Distinct Roles for Basolateral Amygdala Activity at Discrete Time Points during Risky Decision Making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orsini, Caitlin A; Hernandez, Caesar M; Singhal, Sarthak; Kelly, Kyle B; Frazier, Charles J; Bizon, Jennifer L; Setlow, Barry

    2017-11-29

    Decision making is a multifaceted process, consisting of several distinct phases that likely require different cognitive operations. Previous work showed that the basolateral amygdala (BLA) is a critical substrate for decision making involving risk of punishment; however, it is unclear how the BLA is recruited at different stages of the decision process. To this end, the current study used optogenetics to inhibit the BLA during specific task phases in a model of risky decision making (risky decision-making task) in which rats choose between a small, "safe" reward and a large reward accompanied by varying probabilities of footshock punishment. Male Long-Evans rats received intra-BLA microinjections of viral vectors carrying either halorhodopsin (eNpHR3.0-mCherry) or mCherry alone (control) followed by optic fiber implants and were trained in the risky decision-making task. Laser delivery during the task occurred during intertrial interval, deliberation, or reward outcome phases, the latter of which was further divided into the three possible outcomes (small, safe; large, unpunished; large, punished). Inhibition of the BLA selectively during the deliberation phase decreased choice of the large, risky outcome (decreased risky choice). In contrast, BLA inhibition selectively during delivery of the large, punished outcome increased risky choice. Inhibition had no effect during the other phases, nor did laser delivery affect performance in control rats. Collectively, these data indicate that the BLA can either inhibit or promote choice of risky options, depending on the phase of the decision process in which it is active. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT To date, most behavioral neuroscience research on neural mechanisms of decision making has used techniques that preclude assessment of distinct phases of the decision process. Here we show that optogenetic inhibition of the BLA has opposite effects on choice behavior in a rat model of risky decision making, depending on the phase

  17. Revealing Rembrandt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J Parker

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The power and significance of artwork in shaping human cognition is self-evident. The starting point for our empirical investigations is the view that the task of neuroscience is to integrate itself with other forms of knowledge, rather than to seek to supplant them. In our recent work, we examined a particular aspect of the appreciation of artwork using present-day functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. Our results emphasised the continuity between viewing artwork and other human cognitive activities. We also showed that appreciation of a particular aspect of artwork, namely authenticity, depends upon the co-ordinated activity between the brain regions involved in multiple decision making and those responsible for processing visual information. The findings about brain function probably have no specific consequences for understanding how people respond to the art of Rembrandt in comparison with their response to other artworks. However, the use of images of Rembrandt’s portraits, his most intimate and personal works, clearly had a significant impact upon our viewers, even though they have been spatially confined to the interior of an MRI scanner at the time of viewing. Neuroscientific studies of humans viewing artwork have the capacity to reveal the diversity of human cognitive responses that may be induced by external advice or context as people view artwork in a variety of frameworks and settings.

  18. Deletion of a regulatory gene within the cpk gene cluster reveals novel antibacterial activity in Streptomyces coelicolor A3(2)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gottelt, Marco; Kol, Stefan; Gomez-Escribano, Juan Pablo; Bibb, Mervyn; Takano, Eriko

    Genome sequencing of Streptomyces coelicolor A3(2) revealed an uncharacterized type I polyketide synthase gene cluster (cpk) Here we describe the discovery of a novel antibacterial activity (abCPK) and a yellow-pigmented secondary metabolite (yCPK) after deleting a presumed pathway-specific

  19. Investigation of Slow-wave Activity Saturation during Surgical Anesthesia Reveals a Signature of Neural Inertia in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warnaby, Catherine E; Sleigh, Jamie W; Hight, Darren; Jbabdi, Saad; Tracey, Irene

    2017-10-01

    Previously, we showed experimentally that saturation of slow-wave activity provides a potentially individualized neurophysiologic endpoint for perception loss during anesthesia. Furthermore, it is clear that induction and emergence from anesthesia are not symmetrically reversible processes. The observed hysteresis is potentially underpinned by a neural inertia mechanism as proposed in animal studies. In an advanced secondary analysis of 393 individual electroencephalographic data sets, we used slow-wave activity dose-response relationships to parameterize slow-wave activity saturation during induction and emergence from surgical anesthesia. We determined whether neural inertia exists in humans by comparing slow-wave activity dose responses on induction and emergence. Slow-wave activity saturation occurs for different anesthetics and when opioids and muscle relaxants are used during surgery. There was wide interpatient variability in the hypnotic concentrations required to achieve slow-wave activity saturation. Age negatively correlated with power at slow-wave activity saturation. On emergence, we observed abrupt decreases in slow-wave activity dose responses coincident with recovery of behavioral responsiveness in ~33% individuals. These patients are more likely to have lower power at slow-wave activity saturation, be older, and suffer from short-term confusion on emergence. Slow-wave activity saturation during surgical anesthesia implies that large variability in dosing is required to achieve a targeted potential loss of perception in individual patients. A signature for neural inertia in humans is the maintenance of slow-wave activity even in the presence of very-low hypnotic concentrations during emergence from anesthesia.

  20. Creatine-induced activation of antioxidative defence in myotube cultures revealed by explorative NMR-based metabonomics and proteomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Young, Jette Feveile; Larsen, Lotte Bach; Malmendal, Anders

    2010-01-01

    Creatine is a key intermediate in energy metabolism and supplementation of creatine has been used for increasing muscle mass, strength and endurance. Creatine supplementation has also been reported to trigger the skeletal muscle expression of insulin like growth factor I, to increase the fat......-free mass and improve cognition in elderly, and more explorative approaches like transcriptomics has revealed additional information. The aim of the present study was to reveal additional insight into the biochemical effects of creatine supplementation at the protein and metabolite level by integrating...... the explorative techniques, proteomics and NMR metabonomics, in a systems biology approach. METHODS: Differentiated mouse myotube cultures (C2C12) were exposed to 5 mM creatine monohydrate (CMH) for 24 hours. For proteomics studies, lysed myotubes were analyzed in single 2-DGE gels where the first dimension...

  1. Super-resolution microscopy reveals functional organization of dopamine transporters into cholesterol and neuronal activity-dependent nanodomains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rahbek-Clemmensen, Troels; Lycas, Matthew D.; Erlendsson, Simon

    2017-01-01

    is dynamically sequestrated into cholesterol-dependent nanodomains in the plasma membrane of presynaptic varicosities and neuronal projections of dopaminergic neurons. Stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy reveals irregular dopamine transporter nanodomains (∼70 nm mean diameter) that were highly sensitive...... to cholesterol depletion. Live photoactivated localization microscopy shows a similar dopamine transporter membrane organization in live heterologous cells. In neurons, dual-color dSTORM shows that tyrosine hydroxylase and vesicular monoamine transporter-2 are distinctively localized adjacent to...

  2. Seasonal and Diel Activity Patterns of Eight Sympatric Mammals in Northern Japan Revealed by an Intensive Camera-Trap Survey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takashi Ikeda

    Full Text Available The activity patterns of mammals are generally categorized as nocturnal, diurnal, crepuscular (active at twilight, and cathemeral (active throughout the day. These patterns are highly variable across regions and seasons even within the same species. However, quantitative data is still lacking, particularly for sympatric species. We monitored the seasonal and diel activity patterns of terrestrial mammals in Hokkaido, Japan. Through an intensive camera-trap survey a total of 13,279 capture events were recorded from eight mammals over 20,344 camera-trap days, i.e., two years. Diel activity patterns were clearly divided into four categories: diurnal (Eurasian red squirrels, nocturnal (raccoon dogs and raccoons, crepuscular (sika deer and mountain hares, and cathemeral (Japanese martens, red foxes, and brown bears. Some crepuscular and cathemeral mammals shifted activity peaks across seasons. Particularly, sika deer changed peaks from twilight during spring-autumn to day-time in winter, possibly because of thermal constraints. Japanese martens were cathemeral during winter-summer, but nocturnal in autumn. We found no clear indication of predator-prey and competitive interactions, suggesting that animal densities are not very high or temporal niche partitioning is absent among the target species. This long-term camera-trap survey was highly cost-effective and provided one of the most detailed seasonal and diel activity patterns in multiple sympatric mammals under natural conditions.

  3. Nucleolar Proteome Analysis and Proteasomal Activity Assays Reveal a Link between Nucleolus and 26S Proteasome in A. thaliana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montacié, Charlotte; Durut, Nathalie; Opsomer, Alison; Palm, Denise; Comella, Pascale; Picart, Claire; Carpentier, Marie-Christine; Pontvianne, Frederic; Carapito, Christine; Schleiff, Enrico; Sáez-Vásquez, Julio

    2017-01-01

    In all eukaryotic cells, the nucleolus is functionally and structurally linked to rRNA synthesis and ribosome biogenesis. This compartment contains as well factors involved in other cellular activities, but the functional interconnection between non-ribosomal activities and the nucleolus (structure and function) still remains an open question. Here, we report a novel mass spectrometry analysis of isolated nucleoli from Arabidopsis thaliana plants using the FANoS (Fluorescence Assisted Nucleolus Sorting) strategy. We identified many ribosome biogenesis factors (RBF) and proteins non-related with ribosome biogenesis, in agreement with the recognized multi-functionality of the nucleolus. Interestingly, we found that 26S proteasome subunits localize in the nucleolus and demonstrated that proteasome activity and nucleolus organization are intimately linked to each other. Proteasome subunits form discrete foci in the disorganized nucleolus of nuc1.2 plants. Nuc1.2 protein extracts display reduced proteasome activity in vitro compared to WT protein extracts. Remarkably, proteasome activity in nuc1.2 is similar to proteasome activity in WT plants treated with proteasome inhibitors (MG132 or ALLN). Finally, we show that MG132 treatment induces disruption of nucleolar structures in WT but not in nuc1.2 plants. Altogether, our data suggest a functional interconnection between nucleolus structure and proteasome activity. PMID:29104584

  4. Adenovirus Protein E4-ORF1 activation of PI3 kinase reveals differential regulation of downstream effector pathways in adipocytes

    OpenAIRE

    Chaudhary, Natasha; Gonzalez, Eva; Chang, Sung-Hee; Geng, Fuqiang; Rafii, Shahin; Altorki, Nasser K.; McGraw, Timothy E.

    2016-01-01

    Insulin activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) regulates metabolism, including the translocation of the Glut4 glucose transporter to the plasma membrane and inactivation of the FoxO1 transcription factor. Adenoviral protein E4-ORF1 stimulates cellular glucose metabolism by mimicking growth-factor activation of PI3K. We have used E4-ORF1 as a tool to dissect PI3K-mediated signaling in adipocytes. E4-ORF1 activation of PI3K in adipocytes recapitulates insulin regulation of FoxO1 but...

  5. Stereospecific suppression of active site mutants by methylphosphonate substituted substrates reveals the stereochemical course of site-specific DNA recombination

    OpenAIRE

    Rowley, Paul A.; Kachroo, Aashiq H.; Ma, Chien-Hui; Maciaszek, Anna D.; Guga, Piotr; Jayaram, Makkuni

    2015-01-01

    Tyrosine site-specific recombinases, which promote one class of biologically important phosphoryl transfer reactions in DNA, exemplify active site mechanisms for stabilizing the phosphate transition state. A highly conserved arginine duo (Arg-I; Arg-II) of the recombinase active site plays a crucial role in this function. Cre and Flp recombinase mutants lacking either arginine can be rescued by compensatory charge neutralization of the scissile phosphate via methylphosphonate (MeP) modificati...

  6. Mitogenic activation of B cells in vitro: the properties of adherent accessory cells as revealed by partition analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kettman, J.R.; Soederberg, A.; Lefkovits, I.

    1986-08-15

    The requirement of B cells activated by mitogen (dextran sulfate plus lipopolysaccharide) for accessory cells was studied by partition analysis. Small numbers of splenic B cells were activated to clonal growth, as determined by visual inspection, and to immunoglobulin (Ig) synthesis, as determined by release of Ig into the culture fluid. By placing irradiated adherent cells in the periphery of the microculture wells and forcing responding cells to different areas of the well (slant experiments), it was observed that no cell contact was necessary for B cell activation, and that promoted contact (Rock and Roll experiments) does not increase the efficiency of activation. Sequential microcultures suggest that only some irradiated adherent cells act as accessory cells, but they can perform this function to more than one B cell. Attempts to perform limiting dilution analysis by varying irradiated adherent cell input showed non-single-hit behavior. When the data were rearranged, taking into account the distribution of irradiated adherent cells, then single-hit behavior with about 1 to 5% of irradiated adherent cells acting as an accessory cells for B cell clonal activation was observed. The evidence suggests that an uncommon irradiated adherent cell releases a soluble factor necessary for B cell activation and/or clonal proliferation.

  7. Tight coupling of astrocyte energy metabolism to synaptic activity revealed by genetically encoded FRET nanosensors in hippocampal tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruminot, Iván; Schmälzle, Jana; Leyton, Belén; Barros, L Felipe; Deitmer, Joachim W

    2017-01-01

    The potassium ion, K + , a neuronal signal that is released during excitatory synaptic activity, produces acute activation of glucose consumption in cultured astrocytes, a phenomenon mediated by the sodium bicarbonate cotransporter NBCe1 ( SLC4A4). We have explored here the relevance of this mechanism in brain tissue by imaging the effect of neuronal activity on pH, glucose, pyruvate and lactate dynamics in hippocampal astrocytes using BCECF and FRET nanosensors. Electrical stimulation of Schaffer collaterals produced fast activation of glucose consumption in astrocytes with a parallel increase in intracellular pyruvate and biphasic changes in lactate . These responses were blocked by TTX and were absent in tissue slices prepared from NBCe1-KO mice. Direct depolarization of astrocytes with elevated extracellular K + or Ba 2+ mimicked the metabolic effects of electrical stimulation. We conclude that the glycolytic pathway of astrocytes in situ is acutely sensitive to neuronal activity, and that extracellular K + and the NBCe1 cotransporter are involved in metabolic crosstalk between neurons and astrocytes. Glycolytic activation of astrocytes in response to neuronal K + helps to provide an adequate supply of lactate, a metabolite that is released by astrocytes and which acts as neuronal fuel and an intercellular signal.

  8. Mitogenic activation of B cells in vitro: the properties of adherent accessory cells as revealed by partition analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kettman, J.R.; Soederberg, A.; Lefkovits, I.

    1986-01-01

    The requirement of B cells activated by mitogen (dextran sulfate plus lipopolysaccharide) for accessory cells was studied by partition analysis. Small numbers of splenic B cells were activated to clonal growth, as determined by visual inspection, and to immunoglobulin (Ig) synthesis, as determined by release of Ig into the culture fluid. By placing irradiated adherent cells in the periphery of the microculture wells and forcing responding cells to different areas of the well (slant experiments), it was observed that no cell contact was necessary for B cell activation, and that promoted contact (Rock and Roll experiments) does not increase the efficiency of activation. Sequential microcultures suggest that only some irradiated adherent cells act as accessory cells, but they can perform this function to more than one B cell. Attempts to perform limiting dilution analysis by varying irradiated adherent cell input showed non-single-hit behavior. When the data were rearranged, taking into account the distribution of irradiated adherent cells, then single-hit behavior with about 1 to 5% of irradiated adherent cells acting as an accessory cells for B cell clonal activation was observed. The evidence suggests that an uncommon irradiated adherent cell releases a soluble factor necessary for B cell activation and/or clonal proliferation

  9. Flow cytometric analysis reveals the high levels of platelet activation parameters in circulation of multiple sclerosis patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morel, Agnieszka; Rywaniak, Joanna; Bijak, Michał; Miller, Elżbieta; Niwald, Marta; Saluk, Joanna

    2017-06-01

    The epidemiological studies confirm an increased risk of cardiovascular disease in multiple sclerosis, especially prothrombotic events directly associated with abnormal platelet activity. The aim of our study was to investigate the level of blood platelet activation in the circulation of patients with chronic phase of multiple sclerosis (SP MS) and their reactivity in response to typical platelets' physiological agonists. We examined 85 SP MS patients diagnosed according to the revised McDonald's criteria and 50 healthy volunteers as a control group. The platelet activation and reactivity were assessed using flow cytometry analysis of the following: P-selectin expression (CD62P), activation of GP IIb/IIIa complex (PAC-1 binding), and formation of platelet microparticles (PMPs) and platelet aggregates (PA) in agonist-stimulated (ADP, collagen) and unstimulated whole blood samples. Furthermore, we measured the level of soluble P-selectin (sP-selectin) in plasma using ELISA method, to evaluate the in vivo level of platelet activation, both in healthy and SP MS subjects. We found a statistically significant increase in P-selectin expression, GP IIb/IIIa activation, and formation of PMPs and PA, as well as in unstimulated and agonist-stimulated (ADP, collagen) platelets in whole blood samples from patients with SP MS in comparison to the control group. We also determined the higher sP-selectin level in plasma of SP MS subjects than in the control group. Based on the obtained results, we might conclude that during the course of SP MS platelets are chronically activated and display hyperreactivity to physiological agonists, such as ADP or collagen.

  10. Discrete nuclear structures in actively growing neuroblastoma cells are revealed by antibodies raised against phosphorylated neurofilament proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raabe Timothy D

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Nuclear objects that have in common the property of being recognized by monoclonal antibodies specific for phosphoprotein epitopes and cytoplasmic intermediate filaments (in particular, SMI-31 and RT-97 have been reported in glial and neuronal cells, in situ and in vitro. Since neurofilament and glial filaments are generally considered to be restricted to the cytoplasm, we were interested in exploring the identity of the structures labeled in the nucleus as well as the conditions under which they could be found there. Results Using confocal microscopy and western analysis techniques, we determined 1 the immunolabeled structures are truly within the nucleus; 2 the phosphoepitope labeled by SMI-31 and RT-97 is not specific to neurofilaments (NFs and it can be identified on other intermediate filament proteins (IFs in other cell types; and 3 there is a close relationship between DNA synthesis and the amount of nuclear staining by these antibodies thought to be specific for cytoplasmic proteins. Searches of protein data bases for putative phosphorylation motifs revealed that lamins, NF-H, and GFAP each contain a single tyrosine phosphorylation motif with nearly identical amino acid sequence. Conclusion We therefore suggest that this sequence may be the epitope recognized by SMI-31 and RT-97 mABs, and that the nuclear structures previously reported and shown here are likely phosphorylated lamin intermediate filaments, while the cytoplasmic labeling revealed by the same mABs indicates phosphorylated NFs in neurons or GFAP in glia.

  11. Maintenance of neural activities in torpid Rhinolophus ferrumequinum bats revealed by 2D gel-based proteome analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Qiuyuan; Zhang, Yijian; Dong, Dong; Lei, Ming; Zhang, Shuyi; Liao, Chen-Chung; Pan, Yi-Hsuan

    2017-08-01

    Bats are the only mammals capable of self-powered flying. Many bat species hibernate in winter. A reversible control of cerebral activities is critical for bats to accommodate a repeated torpor-arousal cycle during hibernation. Little is known about the molecular mechanisms that regulate neuronal activities in torpid bats. In this study, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum bat brain proteins were fractionated, and their abundance in active and torpid states was compared. Results of 2D gel-based proteomics showed that 38% of identified proteins with a significant change in abundance are involved in synaptic vesicle recycling and cytoskeletal integrity. Changes in the abundance of proteins related to RNA splicing, proteostasis, redox homeostasis, mitochondrial function, and energy metabolism were also detected. In addition, the levels of GNAO1 (guanine nucleotide-binding protein G αo subunit), an important modulator of neuronal transmembrane signaling, were significantly increased in the insoluble protein fraction of torpid bats; this may be due to GNAO1 palmitoylation making it insoluble. Our data provide molecular evidence for the maintenance of neuronal activities in torpid bats and suggest that a reversible palmitoylation of the G protein plays a role in the regulation of neuronal activities during bat hibernation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Baseline brain activity changes in patients with clinically isolated syndrome revealed by resting-state functional MRI

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Yaou; Duan, Yunyun; Liang, Peipeng; Jia, Xiuqin; Yu, Chunshui [Dept. of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical Univ., Beijing (China); Ye, Jing [Dept. of Neurology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical Univ., Beijing (China); Butzkueven, Helmut [Dept. of Medicine, Univ. of Melbourne, Melbourne (Australia); Dong, Huiqing [Dept. of Neurology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical Univ., Beijing (China); Li, Kuncheng [Dept. of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical Univ., Beijing (China); Beijing Key Laboratory of MRI and Brain Informatics, Beijing (China)], E-mail: likuncheng1955@yahoo.com.cn

    2012-11-15

    Background A clinically isolated syndrome (CIS) is the first manifestation of multiple sclerosis (MS). Previous task-related functional MRI studies demonstrate functional reorganization in patients with CIS. Purpose To assess baseline brain activity changes in patients with CIS by using the technique of regional amplitude of low frequency fluctuation (ALFF) as an index in resting-state fMRI. Material and Methods Resting-state fMRIs data acquired from 37 patients with CIS and 37 age- and sex-matched normal controls were compared to investigate ALFF differences. The relationships between ALFF in regions with significant group differences and the EDSS (Expanded Disability Status Scale), disease duration, and T2 lesion volume (T2LV) were further explored. Results Patients with CIS had significantly decreased ALFF in the right anterior cingulate cortex, right caudate, right lingual gyrus, and right cuneus (P < 0.05 corrected for multiple comparisons using Monte Carlo simulation) compared to normal controls, while no significantly increased ALFF were observed in CIS. No significant correlation was found between the EDSS, disease duration, T2LV, and ALFF in regions with significant group differences. Conclusion In patients with CIS, resting-state fMRI demonstrates decreased activity in several brain regions. These results are in contrast to patients with established MS, in whom ALFF demonstrates several regions of increased activity. It is possible that this shift from decreased activity in CIS to increased activity in MS could reflect the dynamics of cortical reorganization.

  13. DNA repair enzyme APE1 from evolutionarily ancient Hydra reveals redox activity exclusively found in mammalian APE1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pekhale, Komal; Haval, Gauri; Perween, Nusrat; Antoniali, Giulia; Tell, Gianluca; Ghaskadbi, Surendra; Ghaskadbi, Saroj

    2017-11-01

    Only mammalian apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease1 (APE1) has been reported to possess both DNA repair and redox activities. C terminal of the protein is required for base excision repair, while the redox activity resides in the N terminal due to cysteine residues at specific positions. APE1s from other organisms studied so far lack the redox activity in spite of having the N terminal domain. We find that APE1 from the Cnidarian Hydra exhibits both endonuclease and redox activities similar to mammalian APE1. We further show the presence of the three indispensable cysteines in Hydra APE1 for redox activity by site directed mutagenesis. Importance of redox domain but not the repair domain of APE1 in regeneration has been demonstrated by using domain-specific inhibitors. Our findings clearly demonstrate that the redox function of APE1 evolved very early in metazoan evolution and is not a recent acquisition in mammalian APE1 as believed so far. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Abnormal regional spontaneous neuronal activity associated with symptom severity in treatment-naive patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder revealed by resting-state functional MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiu, Linlin; Fu, Xiangshuai; Wang, Shuai; Tang, Qunfeng; Chen, Xingui; Cheng, Lin; Zhang, Fuquan; Zhou, Zhenhe; Tian, Lin

    2017-02-15

    A large number of neuroimaging studies have revealed the dysfunction of brain activities in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) during various tasks. However, regional spontaneous activity abnormalities in OCD are gradually being revealed. In this current study, we aimed to investigate cerebral regions with abnormal spontaneous activity using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and further explored the relationship between the spontaneous neuronal activity and symptom severity of patients with OCD. Thirty-one patients with OCD and 32 age-and sex-matched normal controls received the fMRI scans and fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (fALFF) approach was applied to identify the abnormal brain activity. We found that patients with OCD showed decreased fALFF not only in the cortical-striato-thalamo-cortical (CSTC) circuits like the thalamus, but also in other cerebral systems like the cerebellum, the parietal cortex and the temporal cortex. Additionally, OCD patients demonstrated significant associations between decreased fALFF and obsessive-compulsive symptom severity in the thalamus, the paracentral lobule and the cerebellum. Our results provide evidence for abnormal spontaneous neuronal activity in distributed cerebral areas and support the notion that brain areas outside the CSTC circuits may also play an important role in the pathophysiology of OCD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Activity-guided separation of Chromolaena odorata leaf extract reveals fractions with rice disease-reducing properties

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rodriguez Algaba, Julian; Sørensen, Jens Christian; Sørensen, Hilmer

    2015-01-01

    with water and methanol and the extracts separated using a group separation system followed by analysis using capillary electrophoresis. The fractions from the extracts were tested in vitro and in planta using Bipolaris oryzae (cause of brown spot of rice) to test for their potential to reduce disease...... severity. Activity-guided separation of the C. odorata extracts indicated that compounds with activity could, at least partly, be isolated on a weakly acidic cation exchange column. Further purification yielded fractions with disease reducing effects of up to 72 % at 15 days after inoculation. Activity...... was found both in methanol and water extracts, indicating that the bioactive compound(s) are hydrophilic, low molecular weight compounds. The disease-reducing fractions did not display any direct antimicrobial effects, but data indicate that they protect the plants by induced resistance as evidenced from...

  16. Altered spontaneous brain activity in patients with acute spinal cord injury revealed by resting-state functional MRI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ling Zhu

    Full Text Available Previous neuroimaging studies have provided evidence of structural and functional reorganization of brain in patients with chronic spinal cord injury (SCI. However, it remains unknown whether the spontaneous brain activity changes in acute SCI. In this study, we investigated intrinsic brain activity in acute SCI patients using a regional homogeneity (ReHo analysis based on resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging.A total of 15 patients with acute SCI and 16 healthy controls participated in the study. The ReHo value was used to evaluate spontaneous brain activity, and voxel-wise comparisons of ReHo were performed to identify brain regions with altered spontaneous brain activity between groups. We also assessed the associations between ReHo and the clinical scores in brain regions showing changed spontaneous brain activity.Compared with the controls, the acute SCI patients showed decreased ReHo in the bilateral primary motor cortex/primary somatosensory cortex, bilateral supplementary motor area/dorsal lateral prefrontal cortex, right inferior frontal gyrus, bilateral dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and bilateral caudate; and increased ReHo in bilateral precuneus, the left inferior parietal lobe, the left brainstem/hippocampus, the left cingulate motor area, bilateral insula, bilateral thalamus and bilateral cerebellum. The average ReHo values of the left thalamus and right insula were negatively correlated with the international standards for the neurological classification of spinal cord injury motor scores.Our findings indicate that acute distant neuronal damage has an immediate impact on spontaneous brain activity. In acute SCI patients, the ReHo was prominently altered in brain regions involved in motor execution and cognitive control, default mode network, and which are associated with sensorimotor compensatory reorganization. Abnormal ReHo values in the left thalamus and right insula could serve as potential biomarkers for

  17. Creatine-induced activation of antioxidative defence in myotube cultures revealed by explorative NMR-based metabonomics and proteomics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nielsen Niels

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Creatine is a key intermediate in energy metabolism and supplementation of creatine has been used for increasing muscle mass, strength and endurance. Creatine supplementation has also been reported to trigger the skeletal muscle expression of insulin like growth factor I, to increase the fat-free mass and improve cognition in elderly, and more explorative approaches like transcriptomics has revealed additional information. The aim of the present study was to reveal additional insight into the biochemical effects of creatine supplementation at the protein and metabolite level by integrating the explorative techniques, proteomics and NMR metabonomics, in a systems biology approach. Methods Differentiated mouse myotube cultures (C2C12 were exposed to 5 mM creatine monohydrate (CMH for 24 hours. For proteomics studies, lysed myotubes were analyzed in single 2-DGE gels where the first dimension of protein separation was pI 5-8 and second dimension was a 12.5% Criterion gel. Differentially expressed protein spots of significance were excised from the gel, desalted and identified by peptide mass fingerprinting using MALDI-TOF MS. For NMR metabonomic studies, chloroform/methanol extractions of the myotubes were subjected to one-dimensional 1H NMR spectroscopy and the intracellular oxidative status of myotubes was assessed by intracellular DCFH2 oxidation after 24 h pre-incubation with CMH. Results The identified differentially expressed proteins included vimentin, malate dehydrogenase, peroxiredoxin, thioredoxin dependent peroxide reductase, and 75 kDa and 78 kDa glucose regulated protein precursors. After CMH exposure, up-regulated proteomic spots correlated positively with the NMR signals from creatine, while down-regulated proteomic spots were negatively correlated with these NMR signals. The identified differentially regulated proteins were related to energy metabolism, glucose regulated stress, cellular structure and the

  18. Electronically active defects in the Cu2ZnSn(Se,S)4 alloys as revealed by transient photocapacitance spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, D. Westley; Warren, Charles W.; Gunawan, Oki; Gokmen, Tayfun; Mitzi, David B.; Cohen, J. David

    2012-10-01

    Transient photocapacitance (TPC) spectra were obtained on a series of Cu2ZnSn(Se,S)4 absorber devices with varying Se:S ratios, providing bandgaps (Eg) between 1 eV and 1.5 eV. Efficiencies varied between 8.3% and 9.3% for devices with Eg ≤ 1.2 eV and were near 6.5% for devices with Eg ≥ 1.4 eV. The TPC spectra revealed a band-tail region with Urbach energies at or below 18 meV for the first group, but in the 25-30 meV range for the higher band-gap samples. A deeper defect band centered near 0.8 eV was also observed in most samples. We identified a correlation between the Urbach energies and the voltage deficit in these devices.

  19. Chemical probing of the human sirtuin 5 active site reveals its substrate acyl specificity and peptide-based inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roessler, Claudia; Nowak, Theresa; Pannek, Martin; Gertz, Melanie; Nguyen, Giang T T; Scharfe, Michael; Born, Ilona; Sippl, Wolfgang; Steegborn, Clemens; Schutkowski, Mike

    2014-09-26

    Sirtuins are NAD(+)-dependent deacetylases acting as sensors in metabolic pathways and stress response. In mammals there are seven isoforms. The mitochondrial sirtuin 5 is a weak deacetylase but a very efficient demalonylase and desuccinylase; however, its substrate acyl specificity has not been systematically analyzed. Herein, we investigated a carbamoyl phosphate synthetase 1 derived peptide substrate and modified the lysine side chain systematically to determine the acyl specificity of Sirt5. From that point we designed six potent peptide-based inhibitors that interact with the NAD(+) binding pocket. To characterize the interaction details causing the different substrate and inhibition properties we report several X-ray crystal structures of Sirt5 complexed with these peptides. Our results reveal the Sirt5 acyl selectivity and its molecular basis and enable the design of inhibitors for Sirt5. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  20. Female Choice Reveals Terminal Investment in Male Mealworm Beetles, Tenebrio molitor, after a Repeated Activation of the Immune System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krams, I; Daukšte, J; Kivleniece, I; Krama, T; Rantala, MJ; Ramey, G; Šauša, L

    2011-01-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that secondary sexual traits reflect immunocompetence of males in many animal species. This study experimentally investigated whether a parasite-like immunological challenge via a nylon implant affects sexual attractiveness of males in Tenebrio molitor L. (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) Although a single immunological challenge significantly reduced sexual attractiveness and locomotor activity of males, it had no adverse effect on their survival. A second immune challenge of the same males increased their attractiveness. However, it was found that the repeated challenge significantly reduced locomotor activity of males and caused higher mortality. This result indicates terminal investment on sexual signaling, which is supposedly based on a trade-off between pheromone production and energy expenditures needed for such activities as recovery of immune system and locomotor activity. When the third implantation was carried out in the same group of males, melanization of nylon implants was found to be lower in more attractive than in less attractive males. This suggests that males that became sexually attractive after the second immune challenge did not invest in recovery of their immune system. PMID:21864151

  1. In vitro biomonitoring in polar extracts of solid phase matrices reveals the presence of unknown compounds with estrogenic activity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Legler, J.; Leonards, P.E.G.; Spenkelink, A.; Murk, A.J.

    2003-01-01

    Determination of estrogenic activity has so far mainly concentrated on the assessment of compounds in surface water and effluent. This study is one of the first to biomonitor (xeno-)estrogens in sediment, suspended particulate matter and aquatic organisms. The relatively polar acetone extracts from

  2. Newly identified essential amino acid residues affecting ^8-sphingolipid desaturase activity revealed by site-directed mutagenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    In order to identify amino acid residues crucial for the enzymatic activity of ^8-sphingolipid desaturases, a sequence comparison was performed among ^8-sphingolipid desaturases and ^6-fatty acid desaturase from various plants. In addition to the known conserved cytb5 (cytochrome b5) HPGG motif and...

  3. Trans-Binding Mechanism of Ubiquitin-like Protein Activation Revealed by a UBA5-UFM1 Complex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Walaa Oweis

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Modification of proteins by ubiquitin or ubiquitin-like proteins (UBLs is a critical cellular process implicated in a variety of cellular states and outcomes. A prerequisite for target protein modification by a UBL is the activation of the latter by activating enzymes (E1s. Here, we present the crystal structure of the non-canonical homodimeric E1, UBA5, in complex with its cognate UBL, UFM1, and supporting biochemical experiments. We find that UBA5 binds to UFM1 via a trans-binding mechanism in which UFM1 interacts with distinct sites in both subunits of the UBA5 dimer. This binding mechanism requires a region C-terminal to the adenylation domain that brings UFM1 to the active site of the adjacent UBA5 subunit. We also find that transfer of UFM1 from UBA5 to the E2, UFC1, occurs via a trans mechanism, thereby requiring a homodimer of UBA5. These findings explicitly elucidate the role of UBA5 dimerization in UFM1 activation.

  4. Abnormal transitory focus of hyperactivity revealed by gamma-angioencephalogram in patient with seizure activity. Case report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Planchon, C.A.; Chimenes, H.; Perez, R.

    1979-01-01

    A young patient was admitted to the hospital for a neurological accident following an epileptic seizure. An important focus of hyperactivity of the frontal region was noted on the gamma-angioencephalogram, consistent with a vascular malformation or a highly vascular tumor but corresponding in fact to a focal transiroty hyperfusion, with accompanying intense neuronal activity [fr

  5. Crystal Structure of the CTP1L Endolysin Reveals How Its Activity Is Regulated by a Secondary Translation Product.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunne, Matthew; Leicht, Stefan; Krichel, Boris; Mertens, Haydyn D T; Thompson, Andrew; Krijgsveld, Jeroen; Svergun, Dmitri I; Gómez-Torres, Natalia; Garde, Sonia; Uetrecht, Charlotte; Narbad, Arjan; Mayer, Melinda J; Meijers, Rob

    2016-03-04

    Bacteriophages produce endolysins, which lyse the bacterial host cell to release newly produced virions. The timing of lysis is regulated and is thought to involve the activation of a molecular switch. We present a crystal structure of the activated endolysin CTP1L that targets Clostridium tyrobutyricum, consisting of a complex between the full-length protein and an N-terminally truncated C-terminal cell wall binding domain (CBD). The truncated CBD is produced through an internal translation start site within the endolysin gene. Mutants affecting the internal translation site change the oligomeric state of the endolysin and reduce lytic activity. The activity can be modulated by reconstitution of the full-length endolysin-CBD complex with free CBD. The same oligomerization mechanism applies to the CD27L endolysin that targets Clostridium difficile and the CS74L endolysin that targets Clostridium sporogenes. When the CTP1L endolysin gene is introduced into the commensal bacterium Lactococcus lactis, the truncated CBD is also produced, showing that the alternative start codon can be used in other bacterial species. The identification of a translational switch affecting oligomerization presented here has implications for the design of effective endolysins for the treatment of bacterial infections. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  6. Adenovirus Protein E4-ORF1 Activation of PI3 Kinase Reveals Differential Regulation of Downstream Effector Pathways in Adipocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhary, Natasha; Gonzalez, Eva; Chang, Sung-Hee; Geng, Fuqiang; Rafii, Shahin; Altorki, Nasser K; McGraw, Timothy E

    2016-12-20

    Insulin activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) regulates metabolism, including the translocation of the Glut4 glucose transporter to the plasma membrane and inactivation of the FoxO1 transcription factor. Adenoviral protein E4-ORF1 stimulates cellular glucose metabolism by mimicking growth-factor activation of PI3K. We have used E4-ORF1 as a tool to dissect PI3K-mediated signaling in adipocytes. E4-ORF1 activation of PI3K in adipocytes recapitulates insulin regulation of FoxO1 but not regulation of Glut4. This uncoupling of PI3K effects occurs despite E4-ORF1 activating PI3K and downstream signaling to levels achieved by insulin. Although E4-ORF1 does not fully recapitulate insulin's effects on Glut4, it enhances insulin-stimulated insertion of Glut4-containing vesicles to the plasma membrane independent of Rab10, a key regulator of Glut4 trafficking. E4-ORF1 also stimulates plasma membrane translocation of ubiquitously expressed Glut1 glucose transporter, an effect that is likely essential for E4-ORF1 to promote an anabolic metabolism in a broad range of cell types. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Adenovirus Protein E4-ORF1 Activation of PI3 Kinase Reveals Differential Regulation of Downstream Effector Pathways in Adipocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natasha Chaudhary

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Insulin activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K regulates metabolism, including the translocation of the Glut4 glucose transporter to the plasma membrane and inactivation of the FoxO1 transcription factor. Adenoviral protein E4-ORF1 stimulates cellular glucose metabolism by mimicking growth-factor activation of PI3K. We have used E4-ORF1 as a tool to dissect PI3K-mediated signaling in adipocytes. E4-ORF1 activation of PI3K in adipocytes recapitulates insulin regulation of FoxO1 but not regulation of Glut4. This uncoupling of PI3K effects occurs despite E4-ORF1 activating PI3K and downstream signaling to levels achieved by insulin. Although E4-ORF1 does not fully recapitulate insulin’s effects on Glut4, it enhances insulin-stimulated insertion of Glut4-containing vesicles to the plasma membrane independent of Rab10, a key regulator of Glut4 trafficking. E4-ORF1 also stimulates plasma membrane translocation of ubiquitously expressed Glut1 glucose transporter, an effect that is likely essential for E4-ORF1 to promote an anabolic metabolism in a broad range of cell types.

  8. Groundwater circulation and utilisation in an unconfined carbonate system - revealing the potential effect of climate change and humankind activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tóth, Ádám; Mádl-Szönyi, Judit

    2016-04-01

    Characteristics of gravitational groundwater flow systems in carbonate regions were presented by Mádl-Szönyi & Tóth (2015) based on theoretical considerations, identification and classification of groundwater flow-related field phenomena and numerical simulation. It was revealed that the changes of flow pattern in carbonate framework attributed to groundwater utilization and/or climate change are more apparent due to the effective hydraulic conductivity of carbonates. Consequently, natural or artificial disturbances of water level propagate farther, deeper and faster in carbonates than in siliciclastic basins. These changes could result in degradation and reorganization of hierarchical flow systems, modification of recharge and discharge areas and even alteration of physicochemical parameters (Mádl-Szönyi & Tóth, 2015). This paper presents the application of the gravity-driven regional groundwater flow concept to the hydrogeologically complex thick carbonate system of the Transdanubian Range, Hungary, depicting the flow pattern of the area and to a practical problem of a local study area, conflicts of interest of water supply and water use of a golf course. The question is how will the natural discharge on the golf course be influenced by the planned karst drinking water production well. In addition, the effects of climate change on this conflict were evaluated. We demonstrate the importance of the understanding the appropriate scale in karst studies and illustrate how the gravity-driven regional groundwater flow concept can help to determine it. For this purpose, the hydrogeological conditions of the study site were examined at different scales. The goals were to define the appropriate scale and reveal the effects of tectonic structures; and give prognoses for the possible impact of a planned drinking water well and climate change on the golf course based on numerical simulation. The study also showed the low geothermal potential of the area.

  9. Optogenetic activation of CA1 pyramidal neurons at the dorsal and ventral hippocampus evokes distinct brain-wide responses revealed by mouse fMRI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norio Takata

    Full Text Available The dorsal and ventral hippocampal regions (dHP and vHP are proposed to have distinct functions. Electrophysiological studies have revealed intra-hippocampal variances along the dorsoventral axis. Nevertheless, the extra-hippocampal influences of dHP and vHP activities remain unclear. In this study, we compared the spatial distribution of brain-wide responses upon dHP or vHP activation and further estimate connection strengths between the dHP and the vHP with corresponding extra-hippocampal areas. To achieve this, we first investigated responses of local field potential (LFP and multi unit activities (MUA upon light stimulation in the hippocampus of an anesthetized transgenic mouse, whose CA1 pyramidal neurons expressed a step-function opsin variant of channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2. Optogenetic stimulation increased hippocampal LFP power at theta, gamma, and ultra-fast frequency bands, and augmented MUA, indicating light-induced activation of CA1 pyramidal neurons. Brain-wide responses examined using fMRI revealed that optogenetic activation at the dHP or vHP caused blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD fMRI signals in situ. Although activation at the dHP induced BOLD responses at the vHP, the opposite was not observed. Outside the hippocampal formation, activation at the dHP, but not the vHP, evoked BOLD responses at the retrosplenial cortex (RSP, which is in line with anatomical evidence. In contrast, BOLD responses at the lateral septum (LS were induced only upon vHP activation, even though both dHP and vHP send axonal fibers to the LS. Our findings suggest that the primary targets of dHP and vHP activation are distinct, which concurs with attributed functions of the dHP and RSP in spatial memory, as well as of the vHP and LS in emotional responses.

  10. Functional characterization of a conserved archaeal viral operon revealing single-stranded DNA binding, annealing and nuclease activities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guo, Yang; Kragelund, Birthe Brandt; White, Malcolm F.

    2015-01-01

    encoding proteins of unknown function and forming an operon with ORF207 (gp19). SIRV2 gp17 was found to be a single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) binding protein different in structure from all previously characterized ssDNA binding proteins. Mutagenesis of a few conserved basic residues suggested a U......-shaped binding path for ssDNA. The recombinant gp18 showed an ssDNA annealing activity often associated with helicases and recombinases. To gain insight into the biological role of the entire operon, we characterized SIRV2 gp19 and showed it to possess a 5'→3' ssDNA exonuclease activity, in addition...... for rudiviruses and the close interaction among the ssDNA binding, annealing and nuclease proteins strongly point to a role of the gene operon in genome maturation and/or DNA recombination that may function in viral DNA replication/repair....

  11. Mass spectrometry reveals thioredoxin-1 as a new partner of ADAM17 that can modulate its sheddase activity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aragao, A.Z.B.; Simabuco, F.M.; Smetana, J.H.C. [Laboratorio Nacional de Biociencias - LNBIO, Campinas, SP (Brazil); Yokoo, S.; Paes Leme, A.F. [Laboratorio Nacional de Luz Sincrotron (LNLS), Campinas, SP (Brazil); Rodrigues, E.; Mercadante, A.Z. [Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), SP (Brazil)

    2012-07-01

    Full text: ADAMs are a family of membrane-associated metalloproteinases with a complex multi-domain structure: a metalloproteinase domain, a disintegrin domain, a cysteine-rich region, an epidermal growth factor-like repeat, a transmembrane domain and a cytoplasmic tail. These proteases are responsible for shedding the ectodomains of cell surface proteins, modulating regulatory mechanisms. Many ADAMs are highly associated with tumorigenesis and tumor progression. The aim of this study is identify novel binding partners that can modulate ADAM17 activation via cytoplasmatic domain. We performed the cloning and overexpression of the ADAM17 cytoplasmic tail in HEK-293 cell line and the ligands were determined by LC-MS/MS after proteins immunoprecipitation (IP) with anti-FLAG M2 Affinity Gel (Sigma). Thioredoxin-1 (Trx-1) and others ligands were identified at least in two independent experiments, and this binding is independent of phosphorylation. The IP of Trx-1 was confirmed by Western blot, furthermore Trx-1 immunolocalized with full length ADAM17-HA and cytoplasmic tail-FLAG recombinant proteins in HEK293 and HeLa cells. Trx-1 is part of the system peroxiredoxin/thioredoxin/thioredoxin reductase, one of the mechanisms by which cells maintain the reduced cellular environment, inactivating the reactive oxygen species (ROS). We investigate whether ADAM17 activity is modulate by Trx-1 on AP reporter assay that was performed using HEK293 and SCC-9 cells transfected stably with HB-EGF-AP in co-transfection with transient recombinant Trx-1-HA. The results indicate that Trx-1 can modulate negatively the activity or maturation of ADAM17 in presence of PMA, which is known to increase ROS. In summary, this study identifies Trx-1 and suggest that this protein can modulate ADAM17 activity in normal and tumorigenic cells lines. (author)

  12. Mass spectrometry reveals thioredoxin-1 as a new partner of ADAM17 that can modulate its sheddase activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aragao, A.Z.B.; Simabuco, F.M.; Smetana, J.H.C.; Yokoo, S.; Paes Leme, A.F.; Rodrigues, E.; Mercadante, A.Z.

    2012-01-01

    Full text: ADAMs are a family of membrane-associated metalloproteinases with a complex multi-domain structure: a metalloproteinase domain, a disintegrin domain, a cysteine-rich region, an epidermal growth factor-like repeat, a transmembrane domain and a cytoplasmic tail. These proteases are responsible for shedding the ectodomains of cell surface proteins, modulating regulatory mechanisms. Many ADAMs are highly associated with tumorigenesis and tumor progression. The aim of this study is identify novel binding partners that can modulate ADAM17 activation via cytoplasmatic domain. We performed the cloning and overexpression of the ADAM17 cytoplasmic tail in HEK-293 cell line and the ligands were determined by LC-MS/MS after proteins immunoprecipitation (IP) with anti-FLAG M2 Affinity Gel (Sigma). Thioredoxin-1 (Trx-1) and others ligands were identified at least in two independent experiments, and this binding is independent of phosphorylation. The IP of Trx-1 was confirmed by Western blot, furthermore Trx-1 immunolocalized with full length ADAM17-HA and cytoplasmic tail-FLAG recombinant proteins in HEK293 and HeLa cells. Trx-1 is part of the system peroxiredoxin/thioredoxin/thioredoxin reductase, one of the mechanisms by which cells maintain the reduced cellular environment, inactivating the reactive oxygen species (ROS). We investigate whether ADAM17 activity is modulate by Trx-1 on AP reporter assay that was performed using HEK293 and SCC-9 cells transfected stably with HB-EGF-AP in co-transfection with transient recombinant Trx-1-HA. The results indicate that Trx-1 can modulate negatively the activity or maturation of ADAM17 in presence of PMA, which is known to increase ROS. In summary, this study identifies Trx-1 and suggest that this protein can modulate ADAM17 activity in normal and tumorigenic cells lines. (author)

  13. Crystal structure of the plexin A3 intracellular region reveals an autoinhibited conformation through active site sequestration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    He, Huawei; Yang, Taehong; Terman, Jonathan R.; Zhang, Xuewu; (UTSMC)

    2010-01-20

    Plexin cell surface receptors bind to semaphorin ligands and transduce signals for regulating neuronal axon guidance. The intracellular region of plexins is essential for signaling and contains a R-Ras/M-Ras GTPase activating protein (GAP) domain that is divided into two segments by a Rho GTPase-binding domain (RBD). The regulation mechanisms for plexin remain elusive, although it is known that activation requires both binding of semaphorin to the extracellular region and a Rho-family GTPase (Rac1 or Rnd1) to the RBD. Here we report the crystal structure of the plexin A3 intracellular region. The structure shows that the N- and C-terminal portions of the GAP homologous regions together form a GAP domain with an overall fold similar to other Ras GAPs. However, the plexin GAP domain adopts a closed conformation and cannot accommodate R-Ras/M-Ras in its substrate-binding site, providing a structural basis for the autoinhibited state of plexins. A comparison with the plexin B1 RBD/Rnd1 complex structure suggests that Rnd1 binding alone does not induce a conformational change in plexin, explaining the requirement of both semaphorin and a Rho GTPase for activation. The structure also identifies an N-terminal segment that is important for regulation. Both the N-terminal segment and the RBD make extensive interactions with the GAP domain, suggesting the presence of an allosteric network connecting these three domains that integrates semaphorin and Rho GTPase signals to activate the GAP. The importance of these interactions in plexin signaling is shown by both cell-based and in vivo axon guidance assays.

  14. Anterior/posterior competitive deactivation/activation dichotomy in the human hippocampus as revealed by a 3D navigation task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabel Catarina Duarte

    Full Text Available Anterior/posterior long axis specialization is thought to underlie the organization of the hippocampus. However it remains unclear whether antagonistic mechanisms differentially modulate processing of spatial information within the hippocampus. We used fMRI and a virtual reality 3D paradigm to study encoding and retrieval of spatial memory during active visuospatial navigation, requiring positional encoding and retrieval of object landmarks during the path. Both encoding and retrieval elicited BOLD activation of the posterior most portion of hippocampus, while concurrent deactivations (recently shown to reflect decreases in neural responses were found in the most anterior regions. Encoding elicited stronger activity in the posterior right than the left hippocampus. The former structure also showed significantly stronger activity for allocentric vs. egocentric processing during retrieval. The anterior vs. posterior pattern mimics, from a functional point, although at much distinct temporal scales, the previous anatomical findings in London taxi drivers, whereby posterior enlargement was found at the cost of an anterior decrease, and the mirror symmetric findings observed in blind people, in whom the right anterior hippocampus was found to be larger, at the cost of a smaller posterior hippocampus, as compared with sighted people. In sum, we found a functional dichotomy whereby the anterior/posterior hippocampus shows antagonistic processing patterns for spatial encoding and retrieval of 3D spatial information. To our knowledge, this is the first study reporting such a dynamical pattern in a functional study, which suggests that differential modulation of neural responses within the human hippocampus reflects distinct roles in spatial memory processing.

  15. Protein Conformation Ensembles Monitored by HDX Reveal a Structural Rationale for Abscisic Acid Signaling Protein Affinities and Activities

    OpenAIRE

    West, Graham M.; Pascal, Bruce D.; Ng, Ley-Moy; Soon, Fen-Fen; Melcher, Karsten; Xu, H. Eric; Chalmers, Michael J.; Griffin, Patrick R.

    2013-01-01

    Plants regulate growth and respond to environmental stress through abscisic acid (ABA) regulated pathways, and as such these pathways are of primary interest for biological and agricultural research. The ABA response is first perceived by the PYR/PYL/RCAR class of START protein receptors. These ABA activated receptors disrupt phosphatase inhibition of Snf1-related kinases (SnRKs) enabling kinase signaling. Here, insights into the structural mechanism of proteins in the ABA signaling pathway (...

  16. Distinct summer and winter bacterial communities in the active layer of Svalbard permafrost revealed by DNA- and RNA-based analyses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schostag, Morten; Stibal, Marek; Jacobsen, Carsten S.

    2015-01-01

    organic matter on the bacterial communities. The copy number of 16S rRNA genes and transcripts revealed no distinct seasonal changes indicating potential bacterial activity during winter despite soil temperatures well below -10ºC. Multivariate statistical analysis of the bacterial diversity data (DNA......The active layer of soil overlaying permafrost in the Arctic is subjected to dramatic annual changes in temperature and soil chemistry, which likely affect bacterial activity and community structure. We studied seasonal variations in the bacterial community of active layer soil from Svalbard (78º......N) by co-extracting DNA and RNA from 12 soil cores collected monthly over a year. PCR amplicons of 16S rRNA genes (DNA) and reverse transcribed transcripts (cDNA) were quantified and sequenced to test for the effect of low winter temperature and seasonal variation in concentration of easily degradable...

  17. Linking anti-predator behaviour to prey demography reveals limited risk effects of an actively hunting large carnivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Middleton, Arthur D; Kauffman, Matthew J; McWhirter, Douglas E; Jimenez, Michael D; Cook, Rachel C; Cook, John G; Albeke, Shannon E; Sawyer, Hall; White, P J

    2013-08-01

    Ecological theory predicts that the diffuse risk cues generated by wide-ranging, active predators should induce prey behavioural responses but not major, population- or community-level consequences. We evaluated the non-consumptive effects (NCEs) of an active predator, the grey wolf (Canis lupus), by simultaneously tracking wolves and the behaviour, body fat, and pregnancy of elk (Cervus elaphus), their primary prey in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. When wolves approached within 1 km, elk increased their rates of movement, displacement and vigilance. Even in high-risk areas, however, these encounters occurred only once every 9 days. Ultimately, despite 20-fold variation in the frequency of encounters between wolves and individual elk, the risk of predation was not associated with elk body fat or pregnancy. Our findings suggest that the ecological consequences of actively hunting large carnivores, such as the wolf, are more likely transmitted by consumptive effects on prey survival than NCEs on prey behaviour. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  18. Structural variation of the oceanic Moho in the Pacific plate revealed by active-source seismic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohira, Akane; Kodaira, Shuichi; Nakamura, Yasuyuki; Fujie, Gou; Arai, Ryuta; Miura, Seiichi

    2017-10-01

    The characteristics of the oceanic Moho are known to depend on various factors, such as seafloor spreading rate, crustal age, and accretionary processes at a ridge. However, the effect of local magmatic activities on the seismic signature of the Moho is poorly understood. Here an active-source reflection and refraction survey is used to investigate crustal structure and Moho characteristics along a >1000-km-long profile southeast of the Shatsky Rise in a Pacific Ocean basin formed from the Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous and spanning the onset of Shatsky Rise volcanism. Although the seismic velocity structure estimated from the refraction data showed typical characteristics of the oceanic crust of the old Pacific plate, the appearance of the Moho reflections was spatially variable. We observed clear Moho reflections such as those to be expected where the spreading rate is fast to intermediate only at the southwestern end of the profile, whereas Moho reflections were diffuse, weak, or absent along other parts of the profile. The poor Moho reflections can be explained by the presence of a thick crust-mantle transition layer, which is temporally coincident with the formation of the Shatsky Rise. We inferred that the crust-mantle transition layer was formed by changes in on-axis accretion process or modification of the primary Moho by off-axis magmatism, induced by magmatic activity of the Shatsky Rise.

  19. Our Faces in the Dog's Brain: Functional Imaging Reveals Temporal Cortex Activation during Perception of Human Faces.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura V Cuaya

    Full Text Available Dogs have a rich social relationship with humans. One fundamental aspect of it is how dogs pay close attention to human faces in order to guide their behavior, for example, by recognizing their owner and his/her emotional state using visual cues. It is well known that humans have specific brain regions for the processing of other human faces, yet it is unclear how dogs' brains process human faces. For this reason, our study focuses on describing the brain correlates of perception of human faces in dogs using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. We trained seven domestic dogs to remain awake, still and unrestrained inside an MRI scanner. We used a visual stimulation paradigm with block design to compare activity elicited by human faces against everyday objects. Brain activity related to the perception of faces changed significantly in several brain regions, but mainly in the bilateral temporal cortex. The opposite contrast (i.e., everyday objects against human faces showed no significant brain activity change. The temporal cortex is part of the ventral visual pathway, and our results are consistent with reports in other species like primates and sheep, that suggest a high degree of evolutionary conservation of this pathway for face processing. This study introduces the temporal cortex as candidate to process human faces, a pillar of social cognition in dogs.

  20. Dissection of TALE-dependent gene activation reveals that they induce transcription cooperatively and in both orientations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streubel, Jana; Baum, Heidi; Grau, Jan; Stuttman, Johannes; Boch, Jens

    2017-01-01

    Plant-pathogenic Xanthomonas bacteria inject transcription activator-like effector proteins (TALEs) into host cells to specifically induce transcription of plant genes and enhance susceptibility. Although the DNA-binding mode is well-understood it is still ambiguous how TALEs initiate transcription and whether additional promoter elements are needed to support this. To systematically dissect prerequisites for transcriptional initiation the activity of one TALE was compared on different synthetic Bs4 promoter fragments. In addition, a large collection of artificial TALEs spanning the OsSWEET14 promoter was compared. We show that the presence of a TALE alone is not sufficient to initiate transcription suggesting the requirement of additional supporting promoter elements. At the OsSWEET14 promoter TALEs can initiate transcription from various positions, in a synergistic manner of multiple TALEs binding in parallel to the promoter, and even by binding in reverse orientation. TALEs are known to shift the transcriptional start site, but our data show that this shift depends on the individual position of a TALE within a promoter context. Our results implicate that TALEs function like classical enhancer-binding proteins and initiate transcription in both orientations which has consequences for in planta target gene prediction and design of artificial activators.

  1. Single-Cell Transcriptomics Reveals a Population of Dormant Neural Stem Cells that Become Activated upon Brain Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llorens-Bobadilla, Enric; Zhao, Sheng; Baser, Avni; Saiz-Castro, Gonzalo; Zwadlo, Klara; Martin-Villalba, Ana

    2015-09-03

    Heterogeneous pools of adult neural stem cells (NSCs) contribute to brain maintenance and regeneration after injury. The balance of NSC activation and quiescence, as well as the induction of lineage-specific transcription factors, may contribute to diversity of neuronal and glial fates. To identify molecular hallmarks governing these characteristics, we performed single-cell sequencing of an unbiased pool of adult subventricular zone NSCs. This analysis identified a discrete, dormant NSC subpopulation that already expresses distinct combinations of lineage-specific transcription factors during homeostasis. Dormant NSCs enter a primed-quiescent state before activation, which is accompanied by downregulation of glycolytic metabolism, Notch, and BMP signaling and a concomitant upregulation of lineage-specific transcription factors and protein synthesis. In response to brain ischemia, interferon gamma signaling induces dormant NSC subpopulations to enter the primed-quiescent state. This study unveils general principles underlying NSC activation and lineage priming and opens potential avenues for regenerative medicine in the brain. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Detailed characteristics of radiation belt electrons revealed by CSSWE/REPTile measurements: Geomagnetic activity response and precipitation observation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, K.; Li, X.; Schiller, Q.; Gerhardt, D.; Zhao, H.; Millan, R.

    2017-08-01

    Earth's outer radiation belt electrons are highly dynamic. We study the detailed characteristics of relativistic electrons in the outer belt using measurements from the Colorado Student Space Weather Experiment (CSSWE) mission, a low Earth orbit (LEO) CubeSat, which traverses the radiation belt four times in one orbit ( 1.5 h) and has the advantage of measuring the dynamic activities of the electrons including their rapid precipitation. We focus on the measured electron response to geomagnetic activity for different energies to show that there are abundant sub-MeV electrons in the inner belt and slot region. These electrons are further enhanced during active times, while there is a lack of >1.63 MeV electrons in these regions. We also show that the variation of measured electron flux at LEO is strongly dependent on the local magnetic field strength, which is far from a dipole approximation. Moreover, a specific precipitation band, which happened on 19 January 2013, is investigated based on the conjunctive measurement of CSSWE, the Balloon Array for Radiation belt Relativistic Electron Losses, and one of the Polar Operational Environmental Satellites. In this precipitation band event, the net loss of the 0.58-1.63 MeV electrons (L = 3.5-6) is estimated to account for 6.8% of the total electron content.

  3. Proteomic analysis of grapevine resistance induced by Trichoderma harzianum T39 reveals specific defence pathways activated against downy mildew

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perazzolli, Michele

    2012-01-01

    Downy mildew is caused by the oomycete Plasmopara viticola and is one of the most serious diseases of grapevine. The beneficial microorganism Trichoderma harzianum T39 (T39) has previously been shown to induce plant-mediated resistance and to reduce the severity of downy mildew in susceptible grapevines. In order to better understand the cellular processes associated with T39-induced resistance, the proteomic and histochemical changes activated by T39 in grapevine were investigated before and 1 day after P. viticola inoculation. A comprehensive proteomic analysis of T39-induced resistance in grapevine was performed using an eight-plex iTRAQ protocol, resulting in the identification and quantification of a total of 800 proteins. Most of the proteins directly affected by T39 were found to be involved in signal transduction, indicating activation of a complete microbial recognition machinery. Moreover, T39-induced resistance was associated with rapid accumulation of reactive oxygen species and callose at infection sites, as well as changes in abundance of proteins involved in response to stress and redox balance, indicating an active defence response to downy mildew. On the other hand, proteins affected by P. viticola in control plants mainly decreased in abundance, possibly reflecting the establishment of a compatible interaction. Finally, the high-throughput iTRAQ protocol allowed de novo peptide sequencing, which will be used to improve annotation of the Vitis vinifera cv. Pinot Noir proteome. PMID:23105132

  4. Increased fusiform area activation in schizophrenia during processing of spatial frequency-degraded faces, as revealed by fMRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silverstein, S M; All, S D; Kasi, R; Berten, S; Essex, B; Lathrop, K L; Little, D M

    2010-07-01

    People with schizophrenia demonstrate perceptual organization impairments, and these are thought to contribute to their face processing difficulties. We examined the neural substrates of emotionally neutral face processing in schizophrenia by investigating neural activity under three stimulus conditions: faces characterized by the full spectrum of spatial frequencies, faces with low spatial frequency information removed [high spatial frequency (HSF) condition], and faces with high spatial frequency information removed [low spatial frequency (LSF) condition]. Face perception in the HSF condition is more reliant on local feature processing whereas perception in the LSF condition requires greater reliance on global form processing. Past studies of perceptual organization in schizophrenia indicate that patients perform relatively more poorly with degraded stimuli but also that, when global information is absent, patients may perform better than controls because of their relatively increased ability to initially process individual features. Therefore, we hypothesized that people with schizophrenia (n=14) would demonstrate greater face processing difficulties than controls (n=13) in the LSF condition, whereas they would demonstrate a smaller difference or superior performance in the HSF condition. In a gender-discrimination task, behavioral data indicated high levels of accuracy for both groups, with a trend toward an interaction involving higher patient performance in the HSF condition and poorer patient performance in the LSF condition. Patients demonstrated greater activity in the fusiform gyrus compared to controls in both degraded conditions. These data suggest that impairments in basic integration abilities may be compensated for by relatively increased activity in this region.

  5. In silico activity profiling reveals the mechanism of action of antimalarials discovered in a high-throughput screen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plouffe, David; Brinker, Achim; McNamara, Case; Henson, Kerstin; Kato, Nobutaka; Kuhen, Kelli; Nagle, Advait; Adrián, Francisco; Matzen, Jason T.; Anderson, Paul; Nam, Tae-gyu; Gray, Nathanael S.; Chatterjee, Arnab; Janes, Jeff; Yan, S. Frank; Trager, Richard; Caldwell, Jeremy S.; Schultz, Peter G.; Zhou, Yingyao; Winzeler, Elizabeth A.

    2008-01-01

    The growing resistance to current first-line antimalarial drugs represents a major health challenge. To facilitate the discovery of new antimalarials, we have implemented an efficient and robust high-throughput cell-based screen (1,536-well format) based on proliferation of Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) in erythrocytes. From a screen of ≈1.7 million compounds, we identified a diverse collection of ≈6,000 small molecules comprised of >530 distinct scaffolds, all of which show potent antimalarial activity (antimalarials were identified in this screen, thus validating our approach. In addition, we identified many novel chemical scaffolds, which likely act through both known and novel pathways. We further show that in some cases the mechanism of action of these antimalarials can be determined by in silico compound activity profiling. This method uses large datasets from unrelated cellular and biochemical screens and the guilt-by-association principle to predict which cellular pathway and/or protein target is being inhibited by select compounds. In addition, the screening method has the potential to provide the malaria community with many new starting points for the development of biological probes and drugs with novel antiparasitic activities. PMID:18579783

  6. Shallow vent architecture of Puyehue Cordón-Caulle, as revealed by direct observation of explosive activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schipper, C. I.; Tuffen, H.; Castro, J. M.

    2012-04-01

    On June 4, 2011, an explosive eruption of rhyodacitic magma began at the Puyehue Cordón-Caulle volcanic complex (PCCVC), southern Chile. Initial Plinian phases of the eruption produced tephra plumes reaching > 14 km high, the ash from which quickly circumnavigated the globe to cause widespread disruption to air traffic in the Southern Hemisphere. Within two weeks, the continuing explosive eruption was joined by synchronous effusion of lava. We present observations of complex vent activity made 7 months after the eruption onset, on January 4th and 10th, 2012, when explosive activity from PCCVC continued at a lower level of intensity. Fortuitous climatic conditions permitted direct, ground-based observation and video recording of transient vent dynamics within the asymmetrical tephra cone around the main eruptive vent complex and site of lava effusion, as well as real-time collection of juvenile ash as it rained out directly from the active plume. On Jan. 4, explosive activity was semi-continuous ash jetting punctuated by Vulcanian-like blasts. In the ~50m-diameter sub-circular base of the ~400 m-wide, asymmetrical tephra cone, near-continuous ash jetting was observed from two primary point sources. The northerly source was clearly visible, with time-averaged diameter of ~10 m, and the apparently larger southerly source was mostly obscured from view by the ash plume. Activity was at all times somewhat erratic, but followed a rough cyclicity on 30-45 s timescales, consisting of: (1) restriction of the point source into a focused ash jet up to ~50 m high, producing coarse ash dominated by tube pumice (with minor free pyroxene crystals); followed by (2) Vulcanian-like failure of the region around the point source, producing incandescent ballistic bombs thrown up to 100-200 m from the vent. Jetting from the two main point sources combined in the crater to produce a low gas-thrust region and sustained buoyant plume. Directed ash plumes that climbed and breached the inner

  7. The Arabidopsis nox mutant lacking carotene hydroxylase activity reveals a critical role for xanthophylls in photosystem I biogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dall'Osto, Luca; Piques, Maria; Ronzani, Michela; Molesini, Barbara; Alboresi, Alessandro; Cazzaniga, Stefano; Bassi, Roberto

    2013-02-01

    Carotenes, and their oxygenated derivatives xanthophylls, are essential components of the photosynthetic apparatus. They contribute to the assembly of photosynthetic complexes and participate in light absorption and chloroplast photoprotection. Here, we studied the role of xanthophylls, as distinct from that of carotenes, by characterizing a no xanthophylls (nox) mutant of Arabidopsis thaliana, which was obtained by combining mutations targeting the four carotenoid hydroxylase genes. nox plants retained α- and β-carotenes but were devoid in xanthophylls. The phenotype included depletion of light-harvesting complex (LHC) subunits and impairment of nonphotochemical quenching, two effects consistent with the location of xanthophylls in photosystem II antenna, but also a decreased efficiency of photosynthetic electron transfer, photosensitivity, and lethality in soil. Biochemical analysis revealed that the nox mutant was specifically depleted in photosystem I function due to a severe deficiency in PsaA/B subunits. While the stationary level of psaA/B transcripts showed no major differences between genotypes, the stability of newly synthesized PsaA/B proteins was decreased and translation of psaA/B mRNA was impaired in nox with respect to wild-type plants. We conclude that xanthophylls, besides their role in photoprotection and LHC assembly, are also needed for photosystem I core translation and stability, thus making these compounds indispensable for autotrophic growth.

  8. Using activity triggered e-diaries to reveal the associations between physical activity and affective states in older adult's daily living.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanning, Martina; Ebner-Priemer, Ulrich; Schlicht, Wolfgang

    2015-09-17

    Evidence suggests that older adults show positive affects after participating in exercise bouts. However, it is less clear, if and how physical activities in daily living enhance affective states, too. This is dissatisfying, as most of older adults' physical activities are part of their daily living. To answer these questions we used activity-triggered e-diaries to investigate the within-subject effects of physical activity on three dimensions of affective states (valence, energetic arousal, calmness) during everyday life. Older adults (N = 74) between 50 and 70 years took part in the study during three consecutive days. Physical activity in daily living was objectively assessed using accelerometers. Affects were measured 10 min after a study participant surpassed a predefined threshold for activity or inactivity. The participants were prompted by an acoustic signal to assess their momentary affective states on an e-diary. Data were analyzed with hierarchical multilevel analyses. Whenever older individuals were more physically active, they felt more energized (energetic arousal) and agitated (calmness). However, they did not feel better (valence). Interestingly, body mass index (BMI) and valence were associated in a significant cross-level interaction. BMI acts as a moderating variable in the way that lower BMI scores were associated with higher levels of valence scores after being physically active. The innovative ambulatory assessment used here affords an interesting insight to the affective effects of daily activity of older adults. These effects are no simple and no linear ones, i.e. physical activity is not associated with positive affects per se as shown several times in experimental studies with single activity bouts. Rather there is a differentiating association seen as an enhanced feeling of energy and agitation, which is not accompanied by a better feeling. Socio-emotional selectivity theory may support the finding that older individuals are

  9. Characterization of DNA polymerase X from Thermus thermophilus HB8 reveals the POLXc and PHP domains are both required for 3'-5' exonuclease activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakane, Shuhei; Nakagawa, Noriko; Kuramitsu, Seiki; Masui, Ryoji

    2009-04-01

    The X-family DNA polymerases (PolXs) comprise a highly conserved DNA polymerase family found in all kingdoms. Mammalian PolXs are known to be involved in several DNA-processing pathways including repair, but the cellular functions of bacterial PolXs are less known. Many bacterial PolXs have a polymerase and histidinol phosphatase (PHP) domain at their C-termini in addition to a PolX core (POLXc) domain, and possess 3'-5' exonuclease activity. Although both domains are highly conserved in bacteria, their molecular functions, especially for a PHP domain, are unknown. We found Thermus thermophilus HB8 PolX (ttPolX) has Mg(2+)/Mn(2+)-dependent DNA/RNA polymerase, Mn(2+)-dependent 3'-5' exonuclease and DNA-binding activities. We identified the domains of ttPolX by limited proteolysis and characterized their biochemical activities. The POLXc domain was responsible for the polymerase and DNA-binding activities but exonuclease activity was not detected for either domain. However, the POLXc and PHP domains interacted with each other and a mixture of the two domains had Mn(2+)-dependent 3'-5' exonuclease activity. Moreover, site-directed mutagenesis revealed catalytically important residues in the PHP domain for the 3'-5' exonuclease activity. Our findings provide a molecular insight into the functional domain organization of bacterial PolXs, especially the requirement of the PHP domain for 3'-5' exonuclease activity.

  10. Comparison of mitochondrial and nucleolar RNase MRP reveals identical RNA components with distinct enzymatic activities and protein components.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Qiaosheng; Wierzbicki, Sara; Krasilnikov, Andrey S; Schmitt, Mark E

    2010-03-01

    RNase MRP is a ribonucleoprotein endoribonuclease found in three cellular locations where distinct substrates are processed: the mitochondria, the nucleolus, and the cytoplasm. Cytoplasmic RNase MRP is the nucleolar enzyme that is transiently relocalized during mitosis. Nucleolar RNase MRP (NuMRP) was purified to homogeneity, and we extensively purified the mitochondrial RNase MRP (MtMRP) to a single RNA component identical to the NuMRP RNA. Although the protein components of the NuMRP were identified by mass spectrometry successfully, none of the known NuMRP proteins were found in the MtMRP preparation. Only trace amounts of the core NuMRP protein, Pop4, were detected in MtMRP by Western blot. In vitro activity of the two enzymes was compared. MtMRP cleaved only mitochondrial ORI5 substrate, while NuMRP cleaved all three substrates. However, the NuMRP enzyme cleaved the ORI5 substrate at sites different than the MtMRP enzyme. In addition, enzymatic differences in preferred ionic strength confirm these enzymes as distinct entities. Magnesium was found to be essential to both enzymes. We tested a number of reported inhibitors including puromycin, pentamidine, lithium, and pAp. Puromycin inhibition suggested that it binds directly to the MRP RNA, reaffirming the role of the RNA component in catalysis. In conclusion, our study confirms that the NuMRP and MtMRP enzymes are distinct entities with differing activities and protein components but a common RNA subunit, suggesting that the RNA must be playing a crucial role in catalytic activity.

  11. Editor's Highlight: Transcriptome Profiling Reveals Bisphenol A Alternatives Activate Estrogen Receptor Alpha in Human Breast Cancer Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesnage, Robin; Phedonos, Alexia; Arno, Matthew; Balu, Sucharitha; Corton, J Christopher; Antoniou, Michael N

    2017-08-01

    Plasticizers with estrogenic activity, such as bisphenol A (BPA), have potential adverse health effects in humans. Due to mounting evidence of these health effects, BPA is being phased out and replaced by other bisphenol variants in "BPA-free" products. We have compared estrogenic activity of BPA with 6 bisphenol analogues [bisphenol S (BPS); bisphenol F (BPF); bisphenol AP (BPAP); bisphenol AF (BPAF); bisphenol Z (BPZ); bisphenol B (BPB)] in 3 human breast cancer cell lines. Estrogenicity was assessed (10-11-10-4 M) by cell growth in an estrogen receptor (ER)-mediated cell proliferation assay, and by the induction of estrogen response element-mediated transcription in a luciferase assay. BPAF was the most potent bisphenol, followed by BPB > BPZ ∼ BPA > BPF ∼ BPAP > BPS. The addition of ICI 182,780 antagonized the activation of ERs. Data mining of ToxCast high-throughput screening assays confirm our results but also show divergence in the sensitivities of the assays. Gene expression profiles were determined in MCF-7 cells by microarray analysis. The comparison of transcriptome profile alterations resulting from BPA alternatives with an ERα gene expression biomarker further indicates that all BPA alternatives act as ERα agonists in MCF-7 cells. These results were confirmed by Illumina-based RNA sequencing. In conclusion, BPA alternatives are not necessarily less estrogenic than BPA in human breast cancer cells. BPAF, BPB, and BPZ were more estrogenic than BPA. These findings point to the importance of better understanding the risk of adverse effects from exposure to BPA alternatives, including hormone-dependent breast cancer. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Toxicology.

  12. Depression-related increases and decreases in appetite reveal dissociable patterns of aberrant activity in reward and interoceptive neurocircuitry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, W. Kyle; Burrows, Kaiping; Avery, Jason A.; Kerr, Kara L.; Bodurka, Jerzy; Savage, Cary R.; Drevets, Wayne C.

    2016-01-01

    Objective Appetite and weight changes are common but variable diagnostic markers in major depressive disorder: some depressed individuals manifest increased appetite, while others lose their appetite. Many of the brain regions implicated in appetitive responses to food have also been implicated in depression. It is thus remarkable that there exists no published research comparing the neural responses to food stimuli of depressed patients with increased versus decreased appetites. Method Using functional magnetic resonance imaging we compared brain activity in unmedicated depressed patients with increased or decreased appetite, and healthy control subjects, while viewing photographs of food and non-food objects. We also measured how resting-state functional connectivity related to subjects’ food pleasantness ratings. Results Within putative reward regions, depressed participants with increased appetites exhibited greater hemodynamic activity to food stimuli than both those reporting appetite decreases and healthy control subjects. In contrast, depressed subjects experiencing appetite loss exhibited hypoactivation within a region of the mid-insula implicated in interoception, with no difference observed in this region between healthy subjects and those with depression-related appetite increases. Mid-insula activity was negatively correlated with food pleasantness ratings of depressed participants with increased appetites, and its functional connectivity to reward circuitry was positively correlated with food pleasantness ratings. Conclusions Depression-related increases in appetite are associated with hyperactivation of putative mesocorticolimbic reward circuitry, while depression-related appetite loss is associated with hypoactivation of insular regions that support monitoring the body’s physiological state. Importantly, the interactions among these regions also contribute to individual differences in the depression-related appetite changes. PMID:26806872

  13. Extensive hydrothermal activity revealed by multi-tracer survey in the Wallis and Futuna region (SW Pacific)

    OpenAIRE

    Konn, Cecile; Fourre, E.; Jean-baptiste, P.; Donval, Jean-pierre; Guyader, Vivien; Birot, Dominique; Alix, Anne-sophie; Gaillot, Arnaud; Perez, Florian; Dapoigny, A.; Pelleter, Ewan; Resing, J. A.; Charlou, Jean-luc; Fouquet, Yves

    2016-01-01

    The study area is close to the Wallis and Futuna Islands in the French EEZ. It exists on the western boundary of the fastest tectonic area in the world at the junction of the Lau and North-Fiji basins. At this place, the unstable back-arc accommodates the plate motion in three ways: (i) the north Fiji transform fault, (ii) numerous unstable spreading ridges, and (iii) large areas of recent volcanic activity. This instability creates bountiful opportunity for hydrothermal discharge to occur. B...

  14. Culture-independent analyses reveal novel Anaerolineaceae as abundant primary fermenters in anaerobic digesters treating waste activated sludge

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McIlroy, Simon Jon; Kirkegaard, Rasmus Hansen; Dueholm, Morten Simonsen

    2017-01-01

    Anaerobic digestion for biogas production is reliant on the tightly coupled synergistic activities of complex microbial consortia. Members of the uncultured A6 phylotype, within the phylum Chloroflexi, are among the most abundant genus-level-taxa of mesophilic anaerobic digester systems treating...... primary and surplus sludge from wastewater treatment plants, yet are known only by their 16S rRNA gene sequence. This study applied metagenomics to obtain a complete circular genome (2.57 Mbp) from a representative of the A6 taxon. Preliminary annotation of the genome indicates these organisms...

  15. LUMINOUS BURIED ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI AS A FUNCTION OF GALAXY INFRARED LUMINOSITY REVEALED THROUGH SPITZER LOW-RESOLUTION INFRARED SPECTROSCOPY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Imanishi, Masatoshi

    2009-01-01

    We present the results of Spitzer Infrared Spectrograph 5-35 μm low-resolution spectroscopic energy diagnostics of ultraluminous infrared galaxies (ULIRGs) at z> 0.15, classified optically as non-Seyferts. Based on the equivalent widths of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon emission and the optical depths of silicate dust absorption features, we searched for signatures of intrinsically luminous, but optically elusive, buried active galactic nuclei (AGNs) in these optically non-Seyfert ULIRGs. We then combined the results with those of non-Seyfert ULIRGs at z IR 12 L sun . We found that the energetic importance of buried AGNs clearly increases with galaxy infrared luminosity, becoming suddenly discernible in ULIRGs with L IR > 10 12 L sun . For ULIRGs with buried AGN signatures, a significant fraction of infrared luminosities can be accounted for by the detected buried AGN and modestly obscured (A V < 20 mag) starburst activity. The implied masses of spheroidal stellar components in galaxies for which buried AGNs become important roughly correspond to the value separating red massive and blue less-massive galaxies in the local universe. Our results may support the widely proposed AGN-feedback scenario as the origin of galaxy downsizing phenomena, where galaxies with currently larger stellar masses previously had higher AGN energetic contributions and star formation originating infrared luminosities, and have finished their major star formation more quickly, due to stronger AGN feedback.

  16. A large hydrothermal reservoir beneath Taal Volcano (Philippines) revealed by magnetotelluric observations and its implications to the volcanic activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alanis, Paul K B; Yamaya, Yusuke; Takeuchi, Akihiro; Sasai, Yoichi; Okada, Yoshihiro; Nagao, Toshiyasu

    2013-01-01

    Taal Volcano is one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines. The magnetotelluric 3D forward analyses indicate the existence of a large high resistivity anomaly (∼100 Ω·m) with a volume of at least 3 km×3 km×3 km, which is capped by a conductive layer (∼10 Ω·m), beneath the Main Crater. This high resistivity anomaly is hypothesized to be a large hydrothermal reservoir, consisting of the aggregate of interconnected cracks in rigid and dense host rocks, which are filled with hydrothermal fluids coming from a magma batch below the reservoir. The hydrothermal fluids are considered partly in gas phase and liquid phase. The presence of such a large hydrothermal reservoir and the stagnant magma below may have influences on the volcano's activity. Two possibilities are presented. First, the 30 January 1911 explosion event was a magmatic hydrothermal eruption rather than a base-surge associated with a phreato-magmatic eruption. Second, the earlier proposed four eruption series may be better interpreted by two cycles, each consisting of series of summit and flank eruptions.

  17. Microbiology Meets Archaeology: Soil Microbial Communities Reveal Different Human Activities at Archaic Monte Iato (Sixth Century BC).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margesin, Rosa; Siles, José A; Cajthaml, Tomas; Öhlinger, Birgit; Kistler, Erich

    2017-05-01

    Microbial ecology has been recognized as useful in archaeological studies. At Archaic Monte Iato in Western Sicily, a native (indigenous) building was discovered. The objective of this study was the first examination of soil microbial communities related to this building. Soil samples were collected from archaeological layers at a ritual deposit (food waste disposal) in the main room and above the fireplace in the annex. Microbial soil characterization included abundance (cellular phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA), viable bacterial counts), activity (physiological profiles, enzyme activities of viable bacteria), diversity, and community structure (bacterial and fungal Illumina amplicon sequencing, identification of viable bacteria). PLFA-derived microbial abundance was lower in soils from the fireplace than in soils from the deposit; the opposite was observed with culturable bacteria. Microbial communities in soils from the fireplace had a higher ability to metabolize carboxylic and acetic acids, while those in soils from the deposit metabolized preferentially carbohydrates. The lower deposit layer was characterized by higher total microbial and bacterial abundance and bacterial richness and by a different carbohydrate metabolization profile compared to the upper deposit layer. Microbial community structures in the fireplace were similar and could be distinguished from those in the two deposit layers, which had different microbial communities. Our data confirmed our hypothesis that human consumption habits left traces on microbiota in the archaeological evidence; therefore, microbiological residues as part of the so-called ecofacts are, like artifacts, key indicators of consumer behavior in the past.

  18. The COS-AGN survey: Revealing the nature of circum-galactic gas around hosts of active galactic nuclei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berg, Trystyn A. M.; Ellison, Sara L.; Tumlinson, Jason; Oppenheimer, Benjamin D.; Horton, Ryan; Bordoloi, Rongmon; Schaye, Joop

    2018-04-01

    Active galactic nuclei (AGN) are thought to play a critical role in shaping galaxies, but their effect on the circumgalactic medium (CGM) is not well studied. We present results from the COS-AGN survey: 19 quasar sightlines that probe the CGM of 20 optically-selected AGN host galaxies with impact parameters 80 frame equivalent widths EW≥124 mÅ) whilst many of the metal ions are not detected in individual sightlines. A sightline-by-sightline comparison between COS-AGN and the control sample yields no significant difference in EW distribution. However, stacked spectra of the COS-AGN and control samples show significant (>3σ) enhancements in the EW of both Siiii And Lyα at impact parameters >164 kpc by a factor of +0.45 ± 0.05 dex and >+0.75 dex respectively. The lack of detections of both high-ionization species near the AGN and strong kinematic offsets between the absorption systemic galaxy redshifts indicates that neither the AGN's ionization nor its outflows are the origin of these differences. Instead, we suggest the observed differences could result from either AGN hosts residing in haloes with intrinsically distinct gas properties, or that their CGM has been affected by a previous event, such as a starburst, which may also have fuelled the nuclear activity.

  19. Seismic tomography model reveals mantle magma sources of recent volcanic activity at El Hierro Island (Canary Islands, Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Yeguas, Araceli; Ibáñez, Jesús M.; Koulakov, Ivan; Jakovlev, Andrey; Romero-Ruiz, M. Carmen; Prudencio, Janire

    2014-12-01

    We present a 3-D model of P and S velocities beneath El Hierro Island, constructed using the traveltime data of more than 13 000 local earthquakes recorded by the Instituto Geográfico Nacional (IGN, Spain) in the period from 2011 July to 2012 September. The velocity models were performed using the LOTOS code for iterative passive source tomography. The results of inversion were thoroughly verified using different resolution and robustness tests. The results reveal that the majority of the onshore area of El Hierro is associated with a high-velocity anomaly observed down to 10-12-km depth. This anomaly is interpreted as the accumulation of solid igneous rocks erupted during the last 1 Myr and intrusive magmatic bodies. Below this high-velocity pattern, we observe a low-velocity anomaly, interpreted as a batch of magma coming from the mantle located beneath El Hierro. The boundary between the low- and high-velocity anomalies is marked by a prominent seismicity cluster, thought to represent anomalous stresses due to the interaction of the batch of magma with crust material. The areas of recent eruptions, Orchilla and La Restinga, are associated with low-velocity anomalies surrounding the main high-velocity block. These eruptions took place around the island where the crust is much weaker than the onshore area and where the melted material cannot penetrate. These results put constraints on the geological model that could explain the origin of the volcanism in oceanic islands, such as in the Canaries, which is not yet clearly understood.

  20. Distinct summer and winter bacterial communities in the active layer of Svalbard permafrost revealed by DNA- and RNA-based analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schostag, Morten; Stibal, Marek; Jacobsen, Carsten S.; Bælum, Jacob; Taş, Neslihan; Elberling, Bo; Jansson, Janet K.; Semenchuk, Philipp; Priemé, Anders

    2015-01-01

    The active layer of soil overlaying permafrost in the Arctic is subjected to dramatic annual changes in temperature and soil chemistry, which likely affect bacterial activity and community structure. We studied seasonal variations in the bacterial community of active layer soil from Svalbard (78°N) by co-extracting DNA and RNA from 12 soil cores collected monthly over a year. PCR amplicons of 16S rRNA genes (DNA) and reverse transcribed transcripts (cDNA) were quantified and sequenced to test for the effect of low winter temperature and seasonal variation in concentration of easily degradable organic matter on the bacterial communities. The copy number of 16S rRNA genes and transcripts revealed no distinct seasonal changes indicating potential bacterial activity during winter despite soil temperatures well below −10°C. Multivariate statistical analysis of the bacterial diversity data (DNA and cDNA libraries) revealed a season-based clustering of the samples, and, e.g., the relative abundance of potentially active Cyanobacteria peaked in June and Alphaproteobacteria increased over the summer and then declined from October to November. The structure of the bulk (DNA-based) community was significantly correlated with pH and dissolved organic carbon, while the potentially active (RNA-based) community structure was not significantly correlated with any of the measured soil parameters. A large fraction of the 16S rRNA transcripts was assigned to nitrogen-fixing bacteria (up to 24% in June) and phototrophic organisms (up to 48% in June) illustrating the potential importance of nitrogen fixation in otherwise nitrogen poor Arctic ecosystems and of phototrophic bacterial activity on the soil surface. PMID:25983731

  1. Potential of two submontane broadleaved species (Acer opalus, Quercus pubescens) to reveal spatiotemporal patterns of rockfall activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Favillier, Adrien; Lopez-Saez, Jérôme; Corona, Christophe; Trappmann, Daniel; Toe, David; Stoffel, Markus; Rovéra, Georges; Berger, Frédéric

    2015-10-01

    Long-term records of rockfalls have proven to be scarce and typically incomplete, especially in increasingly urbanized areas where inventories are largely absent and the risk associated with rockfall events rises proportionally with urbanization. On forested slopes, tree-ring analyses may help to fill this gap, as they have been demonstrated to provide annually-resolved data on past rockfall activity over long periods. Yet, the reconstruction of rockfall chronologies has been hampered in the past by the paucity of studies that include broadleaved tree species, which are, in fact, quite common in various rockfall-prone environments. In this study, we test the sensitivity of two common, yet unstudied, broadleaved species - Quercus pubescens Willd. (Qp) and Acer opalus Mill. (Ao) - to record rockfall impacts. The approach is based on a systematic mapping of trees and the counting of visible scars on the stem surface of both species. Data are presented from a site in the Vercors massif (French Alps) where rocks are frequently detached from Valanginian limestone and marl cliffs. We compare recurrence interval maps obtained from both species and from two different sets of tree structures (i.e., single trees vs. coppice stands) based on Cohen's k coefficient and the mean absolute error. A total of 1230 scars were observed on the stem surface of 847 A. opalus and Q. pubescens trees. Both methods yield comparable results on the spatial distribution of relative rockfall activity with similar downslope decreasing recurrence intervals. Yet recurrence intervals vary significantly according to tree species and tree structure. The recurrence interval observed on the stem surface of Q. pubescens exceeds that of A. opalus by > 20 years in the lower part of the studied plot. Similarly, the recurrence interval map derived from A. opalus coppice stands, dominant at the stand scale, does not exhibit a clear spatial pattern. Differences between species may be explained by the bark

  2. Targeted deep sequencing of mucinous ovarian tumors reveals multiple overlapping RAS-pathway activating mutations in borderline and cancerous neoplasms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mackenzie, Robertson; Kommoss, Stefan; Winterhoff, Boris J.; Kipp, Benjamin R.; Garcia, Joaquin J.; Voss, Jesse; Halling, Kevin; Karnezis, Anthony; Senz, Janine; Yang, Winnie; Prigge, Elena-Sophie; Reuschenbach, Miriam; Doeberitz, Magnus Von Knebel; Gilks, Blake C.; Huntsman, David G.; Bakkum-Gamez, Jamie; McAlpine, Jessica N.; Anglesio, Michael S.

    2015-01-01

    Mucinous ovarian tumors represent a distinct histotype of epithelial ovarian cancer. The rarest (2-4 % of ovarian carcinomas) of the five major histotypes, their genomic landscape remains poorly described. We undertook hotspot sequencing of 50 genes commonly mutated in human cancer across 69 mucinous ovarian tumors. Our goals were to establish the overall frequency of cancer-hotspot mutations across a large cohort, especially those tumors previously thought to be “RAS-pathway alteration negative”, using highly-sensitive next-generation sequencing as well as further explore a small number of cases with apparent heterogeneity in RAS-pathway activating alterations. Using the Ion Torrent PGM platform, we performed next generation sequencing analysis using the v2 Cancer Hotspot Panel. Regions of disparate ERBB2-amplification status were sequenced independently for two mucinous carcinoma (MC) cases, previously established as showing ERBB2 amplification/overexpression heterogeneity, to assess the hypothesis of subclonal populations containing either KRAS mutation or ERBB2 amplification independently or simultaneously. We detected mutations in KRAS, TP53, CDKN2A, PIK3CA, PTEN, BRAF, FGFR2, STK11, CTNNB1, SRC, SMAD4, GNA11 and ERBB2. KRAS mutations remain the most frequently observed alteration among MC (64.9 %) and mucinous borderline tumors (MBOT) (92.3 %). TP53 mutation occurred more frequently in carcinomas than borderline tumors (56.8 % and 11.5 %, respectively), and combined IHC and mutation data suggest alterations occur in approximately 68 % of MC and as many as 20 % of MBOT. Proven and potential RAS-pathway activating changes were observed in all but one MC. Concurrent ERBB2 amplification and KRAS mutation were observed in a substantial number of cases (7/63 total), as was co-occurrence of KRAS and BRAF mutations (one case). Microdissection of ERBB2-amplified regions of tumors harboring KRAS mutation suggests these alterations are occurring in the same cell

  3. Fluorescence-tracking of activation gating in human ERG channels reveals rapid S4 movement and slow pore opening.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeineb Es-Salah-Lamoureux

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available hERG channels are physiologically important ion channels which mediate cardiac repolarization as a result of their unusual gating properties. These are very slow activation compared with other mammalian voltage-gated potassium channels, and extremely rapid inactivation. The mechanism of slow activation is not well understood and is investigated here using fluorescence as a direct measure of S4 movement and pore opening.Tetramethylrhodamine-5-maleimide (TMRM fluorescence at E519 has been used to track S4 voltage sensor movement, and channel opening and closing in hERG channels. Endogenous cysteines (C445 and C449 in the S1-S2 linker bound TMRM, which caused a 10 mV hyperpolarization of the V((1/2 of activation to -27.5+/-2.0 mV, and showed voltage-dependent fluorescence signals. Substitution of S1-S2 linker cysteines with valines allowed unobstructed recording of S3-S4 linker E519C and L520C emission signals. Depolarization of E519C channels caused rapid initial fluorescence quenching, fit with a double Boltzmann relationship, F-V(ON, with V((1/2 (,1 = -37.8+/-1.7 mV, and V((1/2 (,2 = 43.5+/-7.9 mV. The first phase, V((1/2 (,1, was approximately 20 mV negative to the conductance-voltage relationship measured from ionic tail currents (G-V((1/2 = -18.3+/-1.2 mV, and relatively unchanged in a non-inactivating E519C:S620T mutant (V((1/2 = -34.4+/-1.5 mV, suggesting the fast initial fluorescence quenching tracked S4 voltage sensor movement. The second phase of rapid quenching was absent in the S620T mutant. The E519C fluorescence upon repolarization (V((1/2 = -20.6+/-1.2, k = 11.4 mV and L520C quenching during depolarization (V((1/2 = -26.8+/-1.0, k = 13.3 mV matched the respective voltage dependencies of hERG ionic tails, and deactivation time constants from -40 to -110 mV, suggesting they detected pore-S4 rearrangements related to ionic current flow during pore opening and closing.THE DATA INDICATE: 1 that rapid environmental changes occur at the

  4. Retrospective Analysis of Wood Anatomical Traits Reveals a Recent Extension in Tree Cambial Activity in Two High-Elevation Conifers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrer, Marco; Castagneri, Daniele; Prendin, Angela L; Petit, Giai; von Arx, Georg

    2017-01-01

    The study of xylogenesis or wood formation is a powerful, yet labor intensive monitoring approach to investigate intra-annual tree growth responses to environmental factors. However, it seldom covers more than a few growing seasons, so is in contrast to the much longer lifespan of woody plants and the time scale of many environmental processes. Here we applied a novel retrospective approach to test the long-term (1926-2012) consistency in the timing of onset and ending of cambial activity, and in the maximum cambial cell division rate in two conifer species, European larch and Norway spruce at high-elevation in the Alps. We correlated daily temperature with time series of cell number and lumen area partitioned into intra-annual sectors. For both species, we found a good correspondence (1-10 days offset) between the periods when anatomical traits had significant correlations with temperature in recent decades (1969-2012) and available xylogenesis data (1996-2005), previously collected at the same site. Yet, results for the 1926-1968 period indicate a later onset and earlier ending of the cambial activity by 6-30 days. Conversely, the peak in the correlation between annual cell number and temperature, which should correspond to the peak in secondary growth rate, was quite stable over time, with just a minor advance of 4-5 days in the recent decades. Our analyses on time series of wood anatomical traits proved useful to infer on past long-term changes in xylogenetic phases. Combined with intensive continuous monitoring, our approach will improve the understanding of tree responses to climate variability in both the short- and long-term context.

  5. Retrospective Analysis of Wood Anatomical Traits Reveals a Recent Extension in Tree Cambial Activity in Two High-Elevation Conifers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Carrer

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The study of xylogenesis or wood formation is a powerful, yet labor intensive monitoring approach to investigate intra-annual tree growth responses to environmental factors. However, it seldom covers more than a few growing seasons, so is in contrast to the much longer lifespan of woody plants and the time scale of many environmental processes. Here we applied a novel retrospective approach to test the long-term (1926–2012 consistency in the timing of onset and ending of cambial activity, and in the maximum cambial cell division rate in two conifer species, European larch and Norway spruce at high-elevation in the Alps. We correlated daily temperature with time series of cell number and lumen area partitioned into intra-annual sectors. For both species, we found a good correspondence (1–10 days offset between the periods when anatomical traits had significant correlations with temperature in recent decades (1969–2012 and available xylogenesis data (1996–2005, previously collected at the same site. Yet, results for the 1926–1968 period indicate a later onset and earlier ending of the cambial activity by 6–30 days. Conversely, the peak in the correlation between annual cell number and temperature, which should correspond to the peak in secondary growth rate, was quite stable over time, with just a minor advance of 4–5 days in the recent decades. Our analyses on time series of wood anatomical traits proved useful to infer on past long-term changes in xylogenetic phases. Combined with intensive continuous monitoring, our approach will improve the understanding of tree responses to climate variability in both the short- and long-term context.

  6. Shared activity patterns arising at genetic susceptibility loci reveal underlying genomic and cellular architecture of human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baillie, J Kenneth; Bretherick, Andrew; Haley, Christopher S; Clohisey, Sara; Gray, Alan; Neyton, Lucile P A; Barrett, Jeffrey; Stahl, Eli A; Tenesa, Albert; Andersson, Robin; Brown, J Ben; Faulkner, Geoffrey J; Lizio, Marina; Schaefer, Ulf; Daub, Carsten; Itoh, Masayoshi; Kondo, Naoto; Lassmann, Timo; Kawai, Jun; Mole, Damian; Bajic, Vladimir B; Heutink, Peter; Rehli, Michael; Kawaji, Hideya; Sandelin, Albin; Suzuki, Harukazu; Satsangi, Jack; Wells, Christine A; Hacohen, Nir; Freeman, Thomas C; Hayashizaki, Yoshihide; Carninci, Piero; Forrest, Alistair R R; Hume, David A

    2018-03-01

    Genetic variants underlying complex traits, including disease susceptibility, are enriched within the transcriptional regulatory elements, promoters and enhancers. There is emerging evidence that regulatory elements associated with particular traits or diseases share similar patterns of transcriptional activity. Accordingly, shared transcriptional activity (coexpression) may help prioritise loci associated with a given trait, and help to identify underlying biological processes. Using cap analysis of gene expression (CAGE) profiles of promoter- and enhancer-derived RNAs across 1824 human samples, we have analysed coexpression of RNAs originating from trait-associated regulatory regions using a novel quantitative method (network density analysis; NDA). For most traits studied, phenotype-associated variants in regulatory regions were linked to tightly-coexpressed networks that are likely to share important functional characteristics. Coexpression provides a new signal, independent of phenotype association, to enable fine mapping of causative variants. The NDA coexpression approach identifies new genetic variants associated with specific traits, including an association between the regulation of the OCT1 cation transporter and genetic variants underlying circulating cholesterol levels. NDA strongly implicates particular cell types and tissues in disease pathogenesis. For example, distinct groupings of disease-associated regulatory regions implicate two distinct biological processes in the pathogenesis of ulcerative colitis; a further two separate processes are implicated in Crohn's disease. Thus, our functional analysis of genetic predisposition to disease defines new distinct disease endotypes. We predict that patients with a preponderance of susceptibility variants in each group are likely to respond differently to pharmacological therapy. Together, these findings enable a deeper biological understanding of the causal basis of complex traits.

  7. Using GPS and activity tracking to reveal the influence of adolescents' food environment exposure on junk food purchasing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadler, Richard C; Clark, Andrew F; Wilk, Piotr; O'Connor, Colleen; Gilliland, Jason A

    2016-06-09

    This study examines the influence of adolescents' exposure to unhealthy food outlets on junk food purchasing during trips between home and school, with particular attention to how exposure and purchasing differ according to child's biological sex, mode of transportation, and direction to or from school. Between 2010 and 2013, students (n = 654) aged 9-13 years from 25 schools in London and Middlesex County, ON, completed a socio-demographic survey and an activity diary (to identify food purchases), and were observed via a global positioning system for 2 weeks (to track routes for trips to/from school). Spatial data on routes and purchase data were integrated with a validated food outlet database in a geographic information system, and exposure was measured as the minutes a child spent within 50 m of an unhealthy food outlet (i.e., fast food restaurants, variety stores). For trips involving junk food exposure (n = 4588), multilevel logistic regression was used to assess the relationship between exposure and purchasing. Multilevel analyses indicated that adolescents' duration of exposure to unhealthy food outlets between home and school had a significant effect on the likelihood of junk food purchasing. This relationship remained significant when the data were stratified by sex (female/male), trip direction (to/from school) and travel mode (active/car), with the exception of adolescents who travelled by bus. Policies and programs that mitigate the concentration of unhealthy food outlets close to schools are critical for encouraging healthy eating behaviours among children and reducing diet-related health issues such as obesity.

  8. Evidence for sub-lacustrine volcanic activity in Lake Bolsena (central Italy) revealed by high resolution seismic data sets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindhorst, Katja; Krastel, Sebastian; Wagner, Bernd; Schuerer, Anke

    2017-06-01

    The Bolsena caldera that formed between 0.6 and 0.2 Ma has a well preserved structural rim, which makes it an ideal site to study the tectonic and volcanic evolution of calderas. However, the main area is covered by a 150 m deep lake which makes it rather difficult to investigate the subsurface structure directly. To overcome this problem new high resolution hydro-acoustic surveys using a multichannel reflection seismic system and a sediment echo-sounder system were conducted in September 2012. As space was limited we used a rowing boat towed by a rubber boat to handle a 36 m long and 24 channel streamer to receive seismic reflections produced using a Mini GI-Gun (0.25 l). The subsurface structure of Lake Bolsena was imaged up to a sediment depth of 190 m, which is estimated to have filled over a period of 333 kyrs. However, massive pyroclastic flow deposits found in the deeper parts of the basin indicate an initial infill of volcanic deposits from two adjacent younger calderas, the Latera (W) and Montefiascone (SE) calderas. Our data suggest that the caldera has a long history of active volcanism, because the lacustrine sediments show post-sedimentary influences of geothermal fluids. We mapped several mound structures at various stratigraphic depths. Two volcanic structures outcrop at the modern lake surface implying recent activity. One of these structures is hardly covered by sediments and has a crater-like feature in its summit. The other structure shows a pockmark-like depression on top. Another observable feature is a partially sediment filled crater located in the western part of the lake which further implies the existence of a magma chamber located beneath the Bolsena caldera. Since the late Pleistocene and Holocene, the sedimentation was mainly hemipelagic evidenced by a sediment drape of up to 10 m thick sediment drape on the uppermost sediments. Beneath the drape we found evidence for a distal tephra layer likely related to an explosive eruption from

  9. Genome-wide analysis of SREBP1 activity around the clock reveals its combined dependency on nutrient and circadian signals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Federica Gilardi

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available In mammals, the circadian clock allows them to anticipate and adapt physiology around the 24 hours. Conversely, metabolism and food consumption regulate the internal clock, pointing the existence of an intricate relationship between nutrient state and circadian homeostasis that is far from being understood. The Sterol Regulatory Element Binding Protein 1 (SREBP1 is a key regulator of lipid homeostasis. Hepatic SREBP1 function is influenced by the nutrient-response cycle, but also by the circadian machinery. To systematically understand how the interplay of circadian clock and nutrient-driven rhythm regulates SREBP1 activity, we evaluated the genome-wide binding of SREBP1 to its targets throughout the day in C57BL/6 mice. The recruitment of SREBP1 to the DNA showed a highly circadian behaviour, with a maximum during the fed status. However, the temporal expression of SREBP1 targets was not always synchronized with its binding pattern. In particular, different expression phases were observed for SREBP1 target genes depending on their function, suggesting the involvement of other transcription factors in their regulation. Binding sites for Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor 4 (HNF4 were specifically enriched in the close proximity of SREBP1 peaks of genes, whose expression was shifted by about 8 hours with respect to SREBP1 binding. Thus, the cross-talk between hepatic HNF4 and SREBP1 may underlie the expression timing of this subgroup of SREBP1 targets. Interestingly, the proper temporal expression profile of these genes was dramatically changed in Bmal1-/- mice upon time-restricted feeding, for which a rhythmic, but slightly delayed, binding of SREBP1 was maintained. Collectively, our results show that besides the nutrient-driven regulation of SREBP1 nuclear translocation, a second layer of modulation of SREBP1 transcriptional activity, strongly dependent from the circadian clock, exists. This system allows us to fine tune the expression timing of SREBP1

  10. Genome-Wide Analysis of SREBP1 Activity around the Clock Reveals Its Combined Dependency on Nutrient and Circadian Signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naldi, Aurélien; Baruchet, Michaël; Canella, Donatella; Le Martelot, Gwendal; Guex, Nicolas; Desvergne, Béatrice; Delorenzi, Mauro; Deplancke, Bart; Desvergne, Béatrice; Guex, Nicolas; Herr, Winship; Naef, Felix; Rougemont, Jacques; Schibler, Ueli; Deplancke, Bart; Guex, Nicolas; Herr, Winship; Guex, Nicolas; Andersin, Teemu; Cousin, Pascal; Gilardi, Federica; Gos, Pascal; Martelot, Gwendal Le; Lammers, Fabienne; Canella, Donatella; Gilardi, Federica; Raghav, Sunil; Fabbretti, Roberto; Fortier, Arnaud; Long, Li; Vlegel, Volker; Xenarios, Ioannis; Migliavacca, Eugenia; Praz, Viviane; Guex, Nicolas; Naef, Felix; Rougemont, Jacques; David, Fabrice; Jarosz, Yohan; Kuznetsov, Dmitry; Liechti, Robin; Martin, Olivier; Delafontaine, Julien; Sinclair, Lucas; Cajan, Julia; Krier, Irina; Leleu, Marion; Migliavacca, Eugenia; Molina, Nacho; Naldi, Aurélien; Rey, Guillaume; Symul, Laura; Guex, Nicolas; Naef, Felix; Rougemont, Jacques; Bernasconi, David; Delorenzi, Mauro; Andersin, Teemu; Canella, Donatella; Gilardi, Federica; Martelot, Gwendal Le; Lammers, Fabienne; Baruchet, Michaël; Raghav, Sunil

    2014-01-01

    In mammals, the circadian clock allows them to anticipate and adapt physiology around the 24 hours. Conversely, metabolism and food consumption regulate the internal clock, pointing the existence of an intricate relationship between nutrient state and circadian homeostasis that is far from being understood. The Sterol Regulatory Element Binding Protein 1 (SREBP1) is a key regulator of lipid homeostasis. Hepatic SREBP1 function is influenced by the nutrient-response cycle, but also by the circadian machinery. To systematically understand how the interplay of circadian clock and nutrient-driven rhythm regulates SREBP1 activity, we evaluated the genome-wide binding of SREBP1 to its targets throughout the day in C57BL/6 mice. The recruitment of SREBP1 to the DNA showed a highly circadian behaviour, with a maximum during the fed status. However, the temporal expression of SREBP1 targets was not always synchronized with its binding pattern. In particular, different expression phases were observed for SREBP1 target genes depending on their function, suggesting the involvement of other transcription factors in their regulation. Binding sites for Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor 4 (HNF4) were specifically enriched in the close proximity of SREBP1 peaks of genes, whose expression was shifted by about 8 hours with respect to SREBP1 binding. Thus, the cross-talk between hepatic HNF4 and SREBP1 may underlie the expression timing of this subgroup of SREBP1 targets. Interestingly, the proper temporal expression profile of these genes was dramatically changed in Bmal1 −/− mice upon time-restricted feeding, for which a rhythmic, but slightly delayed, binding of SREBP1 was maintained. Collectively, our results show that besides the nutrient-driven regulation of SREBP1 nuclear translocation, a second layer of modulation of SREBP1 transcriptional activity, strongly dependent from the circadian clock, exists. This system allows us to fine tune the expression timing of SREBP1 target genes

  11. Metabonomics-based analysis of Brachyspira pilosicoli's response to tiamulin reveals metabolic activity despite significant growth inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Roy, Caroline Ivanne; Passey, Jade Louise; Woodward, Martin John; La Ragione, Roberto Marcello; Claus, Sandrine Paule

    2017-06-01

    Pathogenic anaerobes Brachyspira spp. are responsible for an increasing number of Intestinal Spirochaetosis (IS) cases in livestock against which few approved treatments are available. Tiamulin is used to treat swine dysentery caused by Brachyspira spp. and recently has been used to handle avian intestinal spirochaetosis (AIS). The therapeutic dose used in chickens requires further evaluation since cases of bacterial resistance to tiamulin have been reported. In this study, we evaluated the impact of tiamulin at varying concentrations on the metabolism of B. pilosicoli using a 1 H-NMR-based metabonomics approach allowing the capture of the overall bacterial metabolic response to antibiotic treatment. Based on growth curve studies, tiamulin impacted bacterial growth even at very low concentration (0.008 μg/mL) although its metabolic activity was barely affected 72 h post exposure to antibiotic treatment. Only the highest dose of tiamulin tested (0.250 μg/mL) caused a major metabolic shift. Results showed that below this concentration, bacteria could maintain a normal metabolic trajectory despite significant growth inhibition by the antibiotic, which may contribute to disease reemergence post antibiotic treatment. Indeed, we confirmed that B. pilosicoli remained viable even after exposition to the highest antibiotic dose. This paper stresses the need to ensure new evaluation of bacterial viability post bacteriostatic exposure such as tiamulin to guarantee treatment efficacy and decrease antibiotic resistance development. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Optogenetic Activation of the Sensorimotor Cortex Reveals "Local Inhibitory and Global Excitatory" Inputs to the Basal Ganglia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozaki, Mitsunori; Sano, Hiromi; Sato, Shigeki; Ogura, Mitsuhiro; Mushiake, Hajime; Chiken, Satomi; Nakao, Naoyuki; Nambu, Atsushi

    2017-12-01

    To understand how information from different cortical areas is integrated and processed through the cortico-basal ganglia pathways, we used optogenetics to systematically stimulate the sensorimotor cortex and examined basal ganglia activity. We utilized Thy1-ChR2-YFP transgenic mice, in which channelrhodopsin 2 is robustly expressed in layer V pyramidal neurons. We applied light spots to the sensorimotor cortex in a grid pattern and examined neuronal responses in the globus pallidus (GP) and entopeduncular nucleus (EPN), which are the relay and output nuclei of the basal ganglia, respectively. Light stimulation typically induced a triphasic response composed of early excitation, inhibition, and late excitation in GP/EPN neurons. Other response patterns lacking 1 or 2 of the components were also observed. The distribution of the cortical sites whose stimulation induced a triphasic response was confined, whereas stimulation of the large surrounding areas induced early and late excitation without inhibition. Our results suggest that cortical inputs to the GP/EPN are organized in a "local inhibitory and global excitatory" manner. Such organization seems to be the neuronal basis for information processing through the cortico-basal ganglia pathways, that is, releasing and terminating necessary information at an appropriate timing, while simultaneously suppressing other unnecessary information. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  13. Genomewide effects of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma in macrophages and dendritic cells--revealing complexity through systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuaranta-Monroy, Ixchelt; Kiss, Mate; Simandi, Zoltan; Nagy, Laszlo

    2015-09-01

    Systems biology approaches have become indispensable tools in biomedical and basic research. These data integrating bioinformatic methods gained prominence after high-throughput technologies became available to investigate complex cellular processes, such as transcriptional regulation and protein-protein interactions, on a scale that had not been studied before. Immunology is one of the medical fields that systems biology impacted profoundly due to the plasticity of cell types involved and the accessibility of a wide range of experimental models. In this review, we summarize the most important recent genomewide studies exploring the function of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ in macrophages and dendritic cells. PPARγ ChIP-seq experiments were performed in adipocytes derived from embryonic stem cells to complement the existing data sets and to provide comparators to macrophage data. Finally, lists of regulated genes generated from such experiments were analysed with bioinformatics and system biology approaches. We show that genomewide studies utilizing high-throughput data acquisition methods made it possible to gain deeper insights into the role of PPARγ in these immune cell types. We also demonstrate that analysis and visualization of data using network-based approaches can be used to identify novel genes and functions regulated by the receptor. The example of PPARγ in macrophages and dendritic cells highlights the crucial importance of systems biology approaches in establishing novel cellular functions for long-known signaling pathways. © 2015 Stichting European Society for Clinical Investigation Journal Foundation.

  14. A microarray of ubiquitylated proteins for profiling deubiquitylase activity reveals the critical roles of both chain and substrate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loch, Christian M; Strickler, James E

    2012-11-01

    Substrate ubiquitylation is a reversible process critical to cellular homeostasis that is often dysregulated in many human pathologies including cancer and neurodegeneration. Elucidating the mechanistic details of this pathway could unlock a large store of information useful to the design of diagnostic and therapeutic interventions. Proteomic approaches to the questions at hand have generally utilized mass spectrometry (MS), which has been successful in identifying both ubiquitylation substrates and profiling pan-cellular chain linkages, but is generally unable to connect the two. Interacting partners of the deubiquitylating enzymes (DUBs) have also been reported by MS, although substrates of catalytically competent DUBs generally cannot be. Where they have been used towards the study of ubiquitylation, protein microarrays have usually functioned as platforms for the identification of substrates for specific E3 ubiquitin ligases. Here, we report on the first use of protein microarrays to identify substrates of DUBs, and in so doing demonstrate the first example of microarray proteomics involving multiple (i.e., distinct, sequential and opposing) enzymatic activities. This technique demonstrates the selectivity of DUBs for both substrate and type (mono- versus poly-) of ubiquitylation. This work shows that the vast majority of DUBs are monoubiquitylated in vitro, and are incapable of removing this modification from themselves. This work also underscores the critical role of utilizing both ubiquitin chains and substrates when attempting to characterize DUBs. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Ubiquitin Drug Discovery and Diagnostics. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Functional analysis and molecular dynamics simulation of LOX-1 K167N polymorphism reveal alteration of receptor activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Biocca

    Full Text Available The human lectin-like oxidized low density lipoprotein receptor 1 LOX-1, encoded by the ORL1 gene, is the major scavenger receptor for oxidized low density lipoprotein in endothelial cells. Here we report on the functional effects of a coding SNP, c.501G>C, which produces a single amino acid change (K>N at codon 167. Our study was aimed at elucidating whether the c.501G>C polymorphism changes the binding affinity of LOX-1 receptor altering its function. The presence of p.K167N mutation reduces ox-LDL binding and uptake. Ox-LDL activated extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1 and 2 (ERK 1/2 is inhibited. Furthermore, ox-LDL induced biosynthesis of LOX-1 receptors is dependent on the p.K167N variation. In human macrophages, derived from c.501G>C heterozygous individuals, the ox-LDL induced LOX-1 46 kDa band is markedly lower than in induced macrophages derived from c.501G>C controls. Investigation of p.K167N mutation through molecular dynamics simulation and electrostatic analysis suggests that the ox-LDL binding may be attributed to the coupling between the electrostatic potential distribution and the asymmetric flexibility of the basic spine residues. The N/N-LOX-1 mutant has either interrupted electrostatic potential and asymmetric fluctuations of the basic spine arginines.

  16. RNAi screening of subtracted transcriptomes reveals tumor suppression by taurine-activated GABAA receptors involved in volume regulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Nierop, Pim; Vormer, Tinke L.; Foijer, Floris; Verheij, Joanne; Lodder, Johannes C.; Andersen, Jesper B.; Mansvelder, Huibert D.; te Riele, Hein

    2018-01-01

    To identify coding and non-coding suppressor genes of anchorage-independent proliferation by efficient loss-of-function screening, we have developed a method for enzymatic production of low complexity shRNA libraries from subtracted transcriptomes. We produced and screened two LEGO (Low-complexity by Enrichment for Genes shut Off) shRNA libraries that were enriched for shRNA vectors targeting coding and non-coding polyadenylated transcripts that were reduced in transformed Mouse Embryonic Fibroblasts (MEFs). The LEGO shRNA libraries included ~25 shRNA vectors per transcript which limited off-target artifacts. Our method identified 79 coding and non-coding suppressor transcripts. We found that taurine-responsive GABAA receptor subunits, including GABRA5 and GABRB3, were induced during the arrest of non-transformed anchor-deprived MEFs and prevented anchorless proliferation. We show that taurine activates chloride currents through GABAA receptors on MEFs, causing seclusion of cell volume in large membrane protrusions. Volume seclusion from cells by taurine correlated with reduced proliferation and, conversely, suppression of this pathway allowed anchorage-independent proliferation. In human cholangiocarcinomas, we found that several proteins involved in taurine signaling via GABAA receptors were repressed. Low GABRA5 expression typified hyperproliferative tumors, and loss of taurine signaling correlated with reduced patient survival, suggesting this tumor suppressive mechanism operates in vivo. PMID:29787571

  17. Model-Driven Analysis of Eyeblink Classical Conditioning Reveals the Underlying Structure of Cerebellar Plasticity and Neuronal Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonietti, Alberto; Casellato, Claudia; D'Angelo, Egidio; Pedrocchi, Alessandra

    The cerebellum plays a critical role in sensorimotor control. However, how the specific circuits and plastic mechanisms of the cerebellum are engaged in closed-loop processing is still unclear. We developed an artificial sensorimotor control system embedding a detailed spiking cerebellar microcircuit with three bidirectional plasticity sites. This proved able to reproduce a cerebellar-driven associative paradigm, the eyeblink classical conditioning (EBCC), in which a precise time relationship between an unconditioned stimulus (US) and a conditioned stimulus (CS) is established. We challenged the spiking model to fit an experimental data set from human subjects. Two subsequent sessions of EBCC acquisition and extinction were recorded and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) was applied on the cerebellum to alter circuit function and plasticity. Evolutionary algorithms were used to find the near-optimal model parameters to reproduce the behaviors of subjects in the different sessions of the protocol. The main finding is that the optimized cerebellar model was able to learn to anticipate (predict) conditioned responses with accurate timing and success rate, demonstrating fast acquisition, memory stabilization, rapid extinction, and faster reacquisition as in EBCC in humans. The firing of Purkinje cells (PCs) and deep cerebellar nuclei (DCN) changed during learning under the control of synaptic plasticity, which evolved at different rates, with a faster acquisition in the cerebellar cortex than in DCN synapses. Eventually, a reduced PC activity released DCN discharge just after the CS, precisely anticipating the US and causing the eyeblink. Moreover, a specific alteration in cortical plasticity explained the EBCC changes induced by cerebellar TMS in humans. In this paper, for the first time, it is shown how closed-loop simulations, using detailed cerebellar microcircuit models, can be successfully used to fit real experimental data sets. Thus, the changes of the

  18. Analysis of mitochondrial 3D-deformation in cardiomyocytes during active contraction reveals passive structural anisotropy of orthogonal short axes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yael Yaniv

    Full Text Available The cardiomyocyte cytoskeleton, composed of rigid and elastic elements, maintains the isolated cell in an elongated cylindrical shape with an elliptical cross-section, even during contraction-relaxation cycles. Cardiomyocyte mitochondria are micron-sized, fluid-filled passive spheres distributed throughout the cell in a crystal-like lattice, arranged in pairs sandwiched between the sarcomere contractile machinery, both longitudinally and radially. Their shape represents the extant 3-dimensional (3D force-balance. We developed a novel method to examine mitochondrial 3D-deformation in response to contraction and relaxation to understand how dynamic forces are balanced inside cardiomyocytes. The variation in transmitted light intensity induced by the periodic lattice of myofilaments alternating with mitochondrial rows can be analyzed by Fourier transformation along a given cardiomyocyte axis to measure mitochondrial deformation along that axis. This technique enables precise detection of changes in dimension of ∼1% in ∼1 µm (long-axis structures with 8 ms time-resolution. During active contraction (1 Hz stimulation, mitochondria deform along the length- and width-axes of the cell with similar deformation kinetics in both sarcomere and mitochondrial structures. However, significant deformation anisotropy (without hysteresis was observed between the orthogonal short-axes (i.e., width and depth of mitochondria during electrical stimulation. The same degree of deformation anisotropy was also found between the myocyte orthogonal short-axes during electrical stimulation. Therefore, the deformation of the mitochondria reflects the overall deformation of the cell, and the apparent stiffness and stress/strain characteristics of the cytoskeleton differ appreciably between the two cardiomyocyte orthogonal short-axes. This method may be applied to obtaining a better understanding of the dynamic force-balance inside cardiomyocytes and of changes in the

  19. Fatigue sensation induced by the sounds associated with mental fatigue and its related neural activities: revealed by magnetoencephalography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishii, Akira; Tanaka, Masaaki; Iwamae, Masayoshi; Kim, Chongsoo; Yamano, Emi; Watanabe, Yasuyoshi

    2013-06-13

    It has been proposed that an inappropriately conditioned fatigue sensation could be one cause of chronic fatigue. Although classical conditioning of the fatigue sensation has been reported in rats, there have been no reports in humans. Our aim was to examine whether classical conditioning of the mental fatigue sensation can take place in humans and to clarify the neural mechanisms of fatigue sensation using magnetoencephalography (MEG). Ten and 9 healthy volunteers participated in a conditioning and a control experiment, respectively. In the conditioning experiment, we used metronome sounds as conditioned stimuli and two-back task trials as unconditioned stimuli to cause fatigue sensation. Participants underwent MEG measurement while listening to the metronome sounds for 6 min. Thereafter, fatigue-inducing mental task trials (two-back task trials), which are demanding working-memory task trials, were performed for 60 min; metronome sounds were started 30 min after the start of the task trials (conditioning session). The next day, neural activities while listening to the metronome for 6 min were measured. Levels of fatigue sensation were also assessed using a visual analogue scale. In the control experiment, participants listened to the metronome on the first and second days, but they did not perform conditioning session. MEG was not recorded in the control experiment. The level of fatigue sensation caused by listening to the metronome on the second day was significantly higher relative to that on the first day only when participants performed the conditioning session on the first day. Equivalent current dipoles (ECDs) in the insular cortex, with mean latencies of approximately 190 ms, were observed in six of eight participants after the conditioning session, although ECDs were not identified in any participant before the conditioning session. We demonstrated that the metronome sounds can cause mental fatigue sensation as a result of repeated pairings of the sounds

  20. THE LONGEST TIMESCALE X-RAY VARIABILITY REVEALS EVIDENCE FOR ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI IN THE HIGH ACCRETION STATE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Youhong

    2011-01-01

    The All Sky Monitor (ASM) on board the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer has continuously monitored a number of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) with similar sampling rates for 14 years, from 1996 January to 2009 December. Utilizing the archival ASM data of 27 AGNs, we calculate the normalized excess variances of the 300-day binned X-ray light curves on the longest timescale (between 300 days and 14 years) explored so far. The observed variance appears to be independent of AGN black-hole mass and bolometric luminosity. According to the scaling relation of black-hole mass (and bolometric luminosity) from galactic black hole X-ray binaries (GBHs) to AGNs, the break timescales that correspond to the break frequencies detected in the power spectral density (PSD) of our AGNs are larger than the binsize (300 days) of the ASM light curves. As a result, the singly broken power-law (soft-state) PSD predicts the variance to be independent of mass and luminosity. Nevertheless, the doubly broken power-law (hard-state) PSD predicts, with the widely accepted ratio of the two break frequencies, that the variance increases with increasing mass and decreases with increasing luminosity. Therefore, the independence of the observed variance on mass and luminosity suggests that AGNs should have soft-state PSDs. Taking into account the scaling of the break timescale with mass and luminosity synchronously, the observed variances are also more consistent with the soft-state than the hard-state PSD predictions. With the averaged variance of AGNs and the soft-state PSD assumption, we obtain a universal PSD amplitude of 0.030 ± 0.022. By analogy with the GBH PSDs in the high/soft state, the longest timescale variability supports the standpoint that AGNs are scaled-up GBHs in the high accretion state, as already implied by the direct PSD analysis.

  1. Diverse activities of viral cis-acting RNA regulatory elements revealed using multicolor, long-term, single-cell imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pocock, Ginger M; Zimdars, Laraine L; Yuan, Ming; Eliceiri, Kevin W; Ahlquist, Paul; Sherer, Nathan M

    2017-02-01

    Cis-acting RNA structural elements govern crucial aspects of viral gene expression. How these structures and other posttranscriptional signals affect RNA trafficking and translation in the context of single cells is poorly understood. Herein we describe a multicolor, long-term (>24 h) imaging strategy for measuring integrated aspects of viral RNA regulatory control in individual cells. We apply this strategy to demonstrate differential mRNA trafficking behaviors governed by RNA elements derived from three retroviruses (HIV-1, murine leukemia virus, and Mason-Pfizer monkey virus), two hepadnaviruses (hepatitis B virus and woodchuck hepatitis virus), and an intron-retaining transcript encoded by the cellular NXF1 gene. Striking behaviors include "burst" RNA nuclear export dynamics regulated by HIV-1's Rev response element and the viral Rev protein; transient aggregations of RNAs into discrete foci at or near the nuclear membrane triggered by multiple elements; and a novel, pulsiform RNA export activity regulated by the hepadnaviral posttranscriptional regulatory element. We incorporate single-cell tracking and a data-mining algorithm into our approach to obtain RNA element-specific, high-resolution gene expression signatures. Together these imaging assays constitute a tractable, systems-based platform for studying otherwise difficult to access spatiotemporal features of viral and cellular gene regulation. © 2017 Pocock 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).

  2. Two active molecular phenotypes of the tachykinin NK1 receptor revealed by G-protein fusions and mutagenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holst, B; Hastrup, H; Raffetseder, U; Martini, L; Schwartz, T W

    2001-06-08

    The NK1 neurokinin receptor presents two non-ideal binding phenomena, two-component binding curves for all agonists and significant differences between agonist affinity determined by homologous versus heterologous competition binding. Whole cell binding with fusion proteins constructed between either Galpha(s) or Galpha(q) and the NK1 receptor with a truncated tail, which secured non-promiscuous G-protein interaction, demonstrated monocomponent agonist binding closely corresponding to either of the two affinity states found in the wild-type receptor. High affinity binding of both substance P and neurokinin A was observed in the tail-truncated Galpha(s) fusion construct, whereas the lower affinity component was displayed by the tail-truncated Galpha(q) fusion. The elusive difference between the affinity determined in heterologous versus homologous binding assays for substance P and especially for neurokinin A was eliminated in the G-protein fusions. An NK1 receptor mutant with a single substitution at the extracellular end of TM-III-(F111S), which totally uncoupled the receptor from Galpha(s) signaling, showed binding properties that were monocomponent and otherwise very similar to those observed in the tail-truncated Galpha(q) fusion construct. Thus, the heterogenous pharmacological phenotype displayed by the NK1 receptor is a reflection of the occurrence of two active conformations or molecular phenotypes representing complexes with the Galpha(s) and Galpha(q) species, respectively. We propose that these molecular forms do not interchange readily, conceivably because of the occurrence of microdomains or "signal-transductosomes" within the cell membrane.

  3. Selective ligand activity at Nur/retinoid X receptor complexes revealed by dimer-specific bioluminescence resonance energy transfer-based sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giner, Xavier C; Cotnoir-White, David; Mader, Sylvie; Lévesque, Daniel

    2017-01-01

    Retinoid X receptors (RXR) play a role as master regulators due to their capacity to form heterodimers with other nuclear receptors. Accordingly, retinoid signaling is involved in multiple biological processes, including development, cell differentiation, metabolism and cell death. However, the role and functions of RXR in different heterodimer complexes remain unsolved, mainly because most RXR drugs (called rexinoids) are not selective to specific heterodimer complexes. This also strongly limits the use of rexinoids for specific therapeutic approaches. In order to better characterize rexinoids at specific nuclear receptor complexes, we have developed and optimized luciferase protein complementation-based Bioluminescence Resonance Energy Transfer (BRET) assays, which can directly measure recruitment of a co-activator motif fused to yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) by specific nuclear receptor dimers. To validate the assays, we compared rexinoid modulation of co-activator recruitment by RXR homodimer, and heterodimers Nur77/RXR and Nurr1/RXR. Results reveal that some rexinoids display selective co-activator recruitment activities with homo- or hetero-dimer complexes. In particular, SR11237 (BMS649) has increased potency for recruitment of co-activator motif and transcriptional activity with the Nur77/RXR heterodimer compared to other complexes. This technology should prove useful to identify new compounds with specificity for individual dimeric species formed by nuclear receptors. PMID:26148973

  4. May positron emission tomography reveal ectopic or active thymus in preoperative evaluation of non-thymomatous myasthenia gravis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mineo, Tommaso Claudio; Ambrogi, Vincenzo; Schillaci, Orazio

    2014-09-05

    In myasthenia gravis (MG) both native and ectopic thymic tissue containing germinal centers should show greater metabolism compared to adjacent tissues. We evaluated whether preoperative standardized uptake value (SUV) of 18fluoro-deoxy-glucose on Positron Emission Tomography (PET) might be increased and correlated with the presence of native or ectopic germinal centers. From 2005 to 2012 we performed extended thymectomy in 68 patients with non-thymomatous MG. All patients underwent PET-scan preoperatively and one-year postoperatively. SUVs were assessed in thymic and perithymic regions. Then it was matched with same-age, non-MG and non-neoplastic control group and finally correlated with presence of germinal centers in native thymus or in the ectopic tissue found in the surgical specimens. Mean SUV was significantly increased in MG patients compared to control group. Thymic SUV was significantly higher in presence of thymic germinal centers [3.5 (2.4-5.0) Vs 2.1 (1.4-2.5), p = 0.021] while perithymic SUV was significantly higher in presence of ectopic germinal centers [3.1 (2.7-3.5) Vs 1.3 (0.9-1.7), p = 0.001]. SUV was significantly correlated with MG score (rho = 0.289, p = 0.017) and marginally with antibodies anti-acetylcholine receptors (rho = 0.129, p = 0.05). At Kaplan Meier analysis, ectopic thymic tissue (p = 0.045) and ectopic germinal centers (p = 0.036) were significant predictors of complete stable remission, but preoperative dichotomized thymic (3.5 or more Vs less) (p = 0.083) and perithymic (2.1 or more Vs less) (p = 0.052) SUVs did not. Thymic and perithymic SUVs were significantly higher in patients with MG than non-MG and non-neoplastic patients. Thymic SUV was significantly correlated with the presence of germinal centers. Perithymic SUV resulted significantly correlated with the discovery of ectopic active thymic tissue. Neither thymic nor perithymic high SUVs predicted remission.

  5. Chemical proteomics approach reveals the direct targets and the heme-dependent activation mechanism of artemisinin in Plasmodium falciparum using an activity-based artemisinin probe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jigang Wang

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Artemisinin and its analogues are currently the most effective anti-malarial drugs. The activation of artemisinin requires the cleavage of the endoperoxide bridge in the presence of iron sources. Once activated, artemisinins attack macromolecules through alkylation and propagate a series of damages, leading to parasite death. Even though several parasite proteins have been reported as artemisinin targets, the exact mechanism of action (MOA of artemisinin is still controversial and its high potency and specificity against the malaria parasite could not be fully accounted for. Recently, we have developed an unbiased chemical proteomics approach to directly probe the MOA of artemisinin in P. falciparum. We synthesized an activity-based artemisinin probe with an alkyne tag, which can be coupled with biotin through click chemistry. This enabled selective purification and identification of 124 protein targets of artemisinin. Many of these targets are critical for the parasite survival. In vitro assays confirmed the specific artemisinin binding and inhibition of selected targets. We thus postulated that artemisinin kills the parasite through disrupting its biochemical landscape. In addition, we showed that artemisinin activation requires heme, rather than free ferrous iron, by monitoring the extent of protein binding using a fluorescent dye coupled with the alkyne-tagged artemisinin. The extremely high level of heme released from the hemoglobin digestion by the parasite makes artemisinin exceptionally potent against late-stage parasites (trophozoite and schizont stages compared to parasites at early ring stage, which have low level of heme, possibly derived from endogenous synthesis. Such a unique activation mechanism also confers artemisinin with extremely high specificity against the parasites, while the healthy red blood cells are unaffected. Our results provide a sound explanation of the MOA of artemisinin and its specificity against malaria

  6. Mathematics revealed

    CERN Document Server

    Berman, Elizabeth

    1979-01-01

    Mathematics Revealed focuses on the principles, processes, operations, and exercises in mathematics.The book first offers information on whole numbers, fractions, and decimals and percents. Discussions focus on measuring length, percent, decimals, numbers as products, addition and subtraction of fractions, mixed numbers and ratios, division of fractions, addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. The text then examines positive and negative numbers and powers and computation. Topics include division and averages, multiplication, ratios, and measurements, scientific notation and estim

  7. Constitutive Activation of the Fission Yeast Pheromone-Responsive Pathway Induces Ectopic Meiosis and Reveals Ste11 as a Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Target

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjærulff, Søren; Lautrup-Larsen, I.; Truelsen, S.

    2005-01-01

    In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, meiosis normally takes place in diploid zygotes resulting from conjugation of haploid cells. In the present study, we report that the expression of a constitutively activated version of the pheromone-responsive mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase...... found that haploid meiosis was dramatically reduced when Ste11 was mutated to mimic phosphorylation by Pat1. The mutation of two putative MAPK sites in Ste11 also dramatically reduced the level of haploid meiosis, suggesting that Ste11 is a direct target of Spk1. Supporting this, we show that Spk1 can...... interact physically with Ste11 and also phosphorylate the transcription factor in vitro. Finally, we demonstrate that ste11 is required for pheromone-induced G1 arrest. Interestingly, when we mutated Ste11 in the sites for Pat1 and Spk1 phosphorylation simultaneously, the cells could still arrest in G1...

  8. Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Orai Reveal How the Third Transmembrane Segment Contributes to Hydration and Ca2+ Selectivity in Calcium Release-Activated Calcium Channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alavizargar, Azadeh; Berti, Claudio; Ejtehadi, Mohammad Reza; Furini, Simone

    2018-04-26

    Calcium release-activated calcium (CRAC) channels open upon depletion of Ca 2+ from the endoplasmic reticulum, and when open, they are permeable to a selective flux of calcium ions. The atomic structure of Orai, the pore domain of CRAC channels, from Drosophila melanogaster has revealed many details about conduction and selectivity in this family of ion channels. However, it is still unclear how residues on the third transmembrane helix can affect the conduction properties of the channel. Here, molecular dynamics and Brownian dynamics simulations were employed to analyze how a conserved glutamate residue on the third transmembrane helix (E262) contributes to selectivity. The comparison between the wild-type and mutated channels revealed a severe impact of the mutation on the hydration pattern of the pore domain and on the dynamics of residues K270, and Brownian dynamics simulations proved that the altered configuration of residues K270 in the mutated channel impairs selectivity to Ca 2+ over Na + . The crevices of water molecules, revealed by molecular dynamics simulations, are perfectly located to contribute to the dynamics of the hydrophobic gate and the basic gate, suggesting a possible role in channel opening and in selectivity function.

  9. Why do young adults develop a passion for Internet activities? The associations among personality, revealing "true self" on the Internet, and passion for the Internet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tosun, Leman Pinar; Lajunen, Timo

    2009-08-01

    This study examines the associations of harmonious passion (HP) and obsessive passion (OP) for Internet activities with Eysenckian personality dimensions in a sample of 421 university students. Results show that psychoticism correlates positively with both HP and OP; extroversion correlates positively with HP only; and neuroticism has no correlation with passion for Internet activities. Additionally, the study examines participants' tendency to express their "true self" on the Internet, and the results reveal that this tendency has a positive association with psychoticism, neuroticism, and both types of passion for the Internet. Moreover, the relationship between psychoticism and passion (both harmonious and obsessive) is mediated by the tendency to express true self on the Internet. The results were interpreted from the media dependency perspective.

  10. Transgenic Analysis of the Leishmania MAP Kinase MPK10 Reveals an Auto-inhibitory Mechanism Crucial for Stage-Regulated Activity and Parasite Viability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cayla, M.; Rachidi, N.; Leclercq, O.

    2014-01-01

    Protozoan pathogens of the genus Leishmania have evolved unique signaling mechanisms that can sense changes in the host environment and trigger adaptive stage differentiation essential for host cell infection. The signaling mechanisms underlying parasite development remain largely elusive even...... though Leishmania mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) have been linked previously to environmentally induced differentiation and virulence. Here, we unravel highly unusual regulatory mechanisms for Leishmania MAP kinase 10 (MPK10). Using a transgenic approach, we demonstrate that MPK10 is stage...... at position 395 that could be implicated in kinase regulation. Finally, we uncovered a feedback loop that limits MPK10 activity through dephosphorylation of the tyrosine residue of the TxY motif. Together our data reveal novel aspects of protein kinase regulation in Leishmania, and propose MPK10...

  11. Disease-linked mutations in factor H reveal pivotal role of cofactor activity in self-surface-selective regulation of complement activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerr, Heather; Wong, Edwin; Makou, Elisavet; Yang, Yi; Marchbank, Kevin; Kavanagh, David; Richards, Anna; Herbert, Andrew P; Barlow, Paul N

    2017-08-11

    Spontaneous activation enables the complement system to respond very rapidly to diverse threats. This activation is efficiently suppressed by complement factor H (CFH) on self-surfaces but not on foreign surfaces. The surface selectivity of CFH, a soluble protein containing 20 complement-control protein modules (CCPs 1-20), may be compromised by disease-linked mutations. However, which of the several functions of CFH drives this self-surface selectivity remains unknown. To address this, we expressed human CFH mutants in Pichia pastoris We found that recombinant I62-CFH (protective against age-related macular degeneration) and V62-CFH functioned equivalently, matching or outperforming plasma-derived CFH, whereas R53H-CFH, linked to atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS), was defective in C3bBb decay-accelerating activity (DAA) and factor I cofactor activity (CA). The aHUS-linked CCP 19 mutant D1119G-CFH had virtually no CA on (self-like) sheep erythrocytes ( E S ) but retained DAA. The aHUS-linked CCP 20 mutant S1191L/V1197A-CFH (LA-CFH) had dramatically reduced CA on E S but was less compromised in DAA. D1119G-CFH and LA-CFH both performed poorly at preventing complement-mediated hemolysis of E S PspCN, a CFH-binding Streptococcus pneumoniae protein domain, binds CFH tightly and increases accessibility of CCPs 19 and 20. PspCN did not improve the DAA of any CFH variant on E S Conversely, PspCN boosted the CA, on E S , of I62-CFH, R53H-CFH, and LA-CFH and also enhanced hemolysis protection by I62-CFH and LA-CFH. We conclude that CCPs 19 and 20 are critical for efficient CA on self-surfaces but less important for DAA. Exposing CCPs 19 and 20 with PspCN and thus enhancing CA on self-surfaces may reverse deficiencies of some CFH variants. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  12. Genetic Correction of SOD1 Mutant iPSCs Reveals ERK and JNK Activated AP1 as a Driver of Neurodegeneration in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akshay Bhinge

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Although mutations in several genes with diverse functions have been known to cause amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, it is unknown to what extent causal mutations impinge on common pathways that drive motor neuron (MN-specific neurodegeneration. In this study, we combined induced pluripotent stem cells-based disease modeling with genome engineering and deep RNA sequencing to identify pathways dysregulated by mutant SOD1 in human MNs. Gene expression profiling and pathway analysis followed by pharmacological screening identified activated ERK and JNK signaling as key drivers of neurodegeneration in mutant SOD1 MNs. The AP1 complex member JUN, an ERK/JNK downstream target, was observed to be highly expressed in MNs compared with non-MNs, providing a mechanistic insight into the specific degeneration of MNs. Importantly, investigations of mutant FUS MNs identified activated p38 and ERK, indicating that network perturbations induced by ALS-causing mutations converge partly on a few specific pathways that are drug responsive and provide immense therapeutic potential. : In this article, Bhinge, Stanton, and colleagues use genome editing of patient-derived iPSCs to model ALS phenotypic defects in vitro. Transcriptomic analysis of disease MNs reveals activation of MAPK, AP1, WNT, cell-cycle, and p53 signaling in ALS MNs. Pharmacological screening uncovers activated ERK and JNK signaling as therapeutic targets in ALS. Keywords: ALS, SOD1, FUS, CRISPR-Cas9, p38, ERK, JNK, WNT, TP53, JUN

  13. Dynamic Response Genes in CD4+ T Cells Reveal a Network of Interactive Proteins that Classifies Disease Activity in Multiple Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Hellberg

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Multiple sclerosis (MS is a chronic inflammatory disease of the CNS and has a varying disease course as well as variable response to treatment. Biomarkers may therefore aid personalized treatment. We tested whether in vitro activation of MS patient-derived CD4+ T cells could reveal potential biomarkers. The dynamic gene expression response to activation was dysregulated in patient-derived CD4+ T cells. By integrating our findings with genome-wide association studies, we constructed a highly connected MS gene module, disclosing cell activation and chemotaxis as central components. Changes in several module genes were associated with differences in protein levels, which were measurable in cerebrospinal fluid and were used to classify patients from control individuals. In addition, these measurements could predict disease activity after 2 years and distinguish low and high responders to treatment in two additional, independent cohorts. While further validation is needed in larger cohorts prior to clinical implementation, we have uncovered a set of potentially promising biomarkers.

  14. Combination of DTI and fMRI reveals the white matter changes correlating with the decline of default-mode network activity in Alzheimer's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xianjun; Di, Qian; Li, Yao; Zhao, Xiaojie

    2009-02-01

    Recently, evidences from fMRI studies have shown that there was decreased activity among the default-mode network in Alzheimer's disease (AD), and DTI researches also demonstrated that demyelinations exist in white matter of AD patients. Therefore, combining these two MRI methods may help to reveal the relationship between white matter damages and alterations of the resting state functional connectivity network. In the present study, we tried to address this issue by means of correlation analysis between DTI and resting state fMRI images. The default-mode networks of AD and normal control groups were compared to find the areas with significantly declined activity firstly. Then, the white matter regions whose fractional anisotropy (FA) value correlated with this decline were located through multiple regressions between the FA values and the BOLD response of the default networks. Among these correlating white matter regions, those whose FA values also declined were found by a group comparison between AD patients and healthy elderly control subjects. Our results showed that the areas with decreased activity among default-mode network included left posterior cingulated cortex (PCC), left medial temporal gyrus et al. And the damaged white matter areas correlated with the default-mode network alterations were located around left sub-gyral temporal lobe. These changes may relate to the decreased connectivity between PCC and medial temporal lobe (MTL), and thus correlate with the deficiency of default-mode network activity.

  15. Structural and biochemical characterization of phage λ FI protein (gpFI) reveals a novel mechanism of DNA packaging chaperone activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popovic, Ana; Wu, Bin; Arrowsmith, Cheryl H; Edwards, Aled M; Davidson, Alan R; Maxwell, Karen L

    2012-09-14

    One of the final steps in the morphogenetic pathway of phage λ is the packaging of a single genome into a preformed empty head structure. In addition to the terminase enzyme, the packaging chaperone, FI protein (gpFI), is required for efficient DNA packaging. In this study, we demonstrate an interaction between gpFI and the major head protein, gpE. Amino acid substitutions in gpFI that reduced the strength of this interaction also decreased the biological activity of gpFI, implying that this head binding activity is essential for the function of gpFI. We also show that gpFI is a two-domain protein, and the C-terminal domain is responsible for the head binding activity. Using nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, we determined the three-dimensional structure of the C-terminal domain and characterized the helical nature of the N-terminal domain. Through structural comparisons, we were able to identify two previously unannotated prophage-encoded proteins with tertiary structures similar to gpFI, although they lack significant pairwise sequence identity. Sequence analysis of these diverse homologues led us to identify related proteins in a variety of myo- and siphophages, revealing that gpFI function has a more highly conserved role in phage morphogenesis than was previously appreciated. Finally, we present a novel model for the mechanism of gpFI chaperone activity in the DNA packaging reaction of phage λ.

  16. Synthesis and evaluation of 8,4'-dideshydroxy-leinamycin revealing new insights into the structure-activity relationship of the anticancer natural product leinamycin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Tao; Ma, Ming; Ge, Hui-Ming; Yang, Chunying; Cleveland, John; Shen, Ben

    2015-11-01

    Leinamycin (LNM, 1) is a novel antitumor antibiotic produced by Streptomyces atroolivaceus S-140 and features an unusual 1,3-dioxo-1,2-dithiolane moiety that is spiro-fused to a thiazole-containing 18-membered lactam ring. The 1,3-dioxo-1,2-dithiolane moiety of LNM is essential for its antitumor activity via an episulfonium ion-mediated DNA alkylation upon reductive activation in the presence of cellular thiols. We recently isolated leinamycin E1 (LNM E1, 2) from an engineered strain S. atroolivaceus SB3033, which lacks the 1,3-dioxo-1,2-dithiolane moiety. Here we report the chemical synthesis of 8,4'-dideshydroxy-LNM (5) from 2 and determination of the cytotoxicity of 5 against selected cancer cell lines in comparison with 1; 5 exhibits comparable activity as 1 with the EC50 values between 8.21 and 275 nM. This work reveals new insight into the structure-activity relationship of LNM and highlights the synergy between metabolic pathway engineering and medicinal chemistry for natural product drug discovery. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Mitrocomin from the jellyfish Mitrocoma cellularia with deleted C-terminal tyrosine reveals a higher bioluminescence activity compared to wild type photoprotein

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burakova, Ludmila P.; Natashin, Pavel V.; Markova, Svetlana V.; Eremeeva, Elena V.; Malikova, Natalia P.; Cheng, Chongyun; Liu, Zhi-Jie; Vysotski, Eugene S.

    2016-09-01

    The full-length cDNA genes encoding five new isoforms of Ca2 +-regulated photoprotein mitrocomin from a small tissue sample of the outer bell margin containing photocytes of only one specimen of the luminous jellyfish Mitrocoma cellularia were cloned, sequenced, and characterized after their expression in Escherichia coli and subsequent purification. The analysis of cDNA nucleotide sequences encoding mitrocomin isoforms allowed suggestion that two isoforms might be the products of two allelic genes differing in one amino acid residue (64R/Q) whereas other isotypes appear as a result of transcriptional mutations. In addition, the crystal structure of mitrocomin was determined at 1.30 Å resolution which expectedly revealed a high similarity with the structures of other hydromedusan photoproteins. Although mitrocomin isoforms reveal a high degree of identity of amino acid sequences, they vary in specific bioluminescence activities. At that, all isotypes displayed the identical bioluminescence spectra (473–474 nm with no shoulder at 400 nm). Fluorescence spectra of Ca2 +-discharged mitrocomins were almost identical to their light emission spectra similar to the case of Ca2 +-discharged aequorin, but different from Ca2 +-discharged obelins and clytin which fluorescence is red-shifted by 25–30 nm from bioluminescence spectra. The main distinction of mitrocomin from other hydromedusan photoproteins is an additional Tyr at the C-terminus. Using site-directed mutagenesis, we showed that this Tyr is not important for bioluminescence because its deletion even increases specific activity and efficiency of apo-mitrocomin conversion into active photoprotein, in contrast to C-terminal Pro of other photoproteins. Since genes in a population generally exist as different isoforms, it makes us anticipate the cloning of even more isoforms of mitrocomin and other hydromedusan photoproteins with different bioluminescence properties.

  18. A novel low-temperature-active β-glucosidase from symbiotic Serratia sp. TN49 reveals four essential positions for substrate accommodation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Junpei; Zhang, Rui; Shi, Pengjun; Huang, Huoqing; Meng, Kun; Yuan, Tiezheng; Yang, Peilong; Yao, Bin

    2011-10-01

    A 2,373-bp full-length gene (bglA49) encoding a 790-residue polypeptide (BglA49) with a calculated mass of 87.8 kDa was cloned from Serratia sp. TN49, a symbiotic bacterium isolated from the gut of longhorned beetle (Batocera horsfieldi) larvae. The deduced amino acid sequence of BglA49 showed the highest identities of 80.1% with a conceptually translated protein from Pantoea sp. At-9b (EEW02556), 38.3% with the identified glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 3 β-glucosidase from Clostridium stercorarium NCBI 11754 (CAB08072), and sp. G5 (ABL09836) and Paenibacillus sp. C7 (AAX35883). The recombinant enzyme (r-BglA49) was expressed in Escherichia coli and displayed the typical characteristics of low-temperature-active enzymes, such as low temperature optimum (showing apparent optimal activity at 35°C), activity at low temperatures (retaining approximately 60% of its maximum activity at 20°C and approximately 25% at 10°C). Compared with the thermophilic GH 3 β-glucosidase, r-BglA49 had fewer hydrogen bonds and salt bridges and less proline residues. These features might relate to the increased structure flexibility and higher catalytic activity at low temperatures of r-BglA49. The molecular docking study of four GH 3 β-glucosidases revealed five conserved positions contributing to substrate accommodation, among which four positions of r-BglA49 (R192, Y228, D260, and E449) were identified to be essential based on site-directed mutagenesis analysis.

  19. BOLD Imaging in Awake Wild-Type and Mu-Opioid Receptor Knock-Out Mice Reveals On-Target Activation Maps in Response to Oxycodone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelsey Moore

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD imaging in awake mice was used to identify differences in brain activity between wild-type, and Mu (µ opioid receptor knock-outs (MuKO in response to oxycodone (OXY. Using a segmented, annotated MRI mouse atlas and computational analysis, patterns of integrated positive and negative BOLD activity were identified across 122 brain areas. The pattern of positive BOLD showed enhanced activation across the brain in WT mice within 15 min of intraperitoneal administration of 2.5 mg of OXY. BOLD activation was detected in 72 regions out of 122, and was most prominent in areas of high µ opioid receptor density (thalamus, ventral tegmental area, substantia nigra, caudate putamen, basal amygdala and hypothalamus, and focus on pain circuits indicated strong activation in major pain processing centers (central amygdala, solitary tract, parabrachial area, insular cortex, gigantocellularis area, ventral thalamus primary sensory cortex and prelimbic cortex. Importantly, the OXY-induced positive BOLD was eliminated in MuKO mice in most regions, with few exceptions (some cerebellar nuclei, CA3 of the hippocampus, medial amygdala and preoptic areas. This result indicates that most effects of OXY on positive BOLD are mediated by the µ opioid receptor (on-target effects. OXY also caused an increase in negative BOLD in WT mice in few regions (16 out of 122 and, unlike the positive BOLD response the negative BOLD was only partially eliminated in the MuKO mice (cerebellum, and in some case intensified (hippocampus. Negative BOLD analysis therefore shows activation and deactivation events in the absence of the µ receptor for some areas where receptor expression is normally extremely low or absent (off-target effects. Together, our approach permits establishing opioid-induced BOLD activation maps in awake mice. In addition, comparison of WT and MuKO mutant mice reveals both on-target and off-target activation events, and set an OXY

  20. CRISPR/Cas9 and active genetics-based trans-species replacement of the endogenous Drosophila kni-L2 CRM reveals unexpected complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiang-Ru Shannon; Gantz, Valentino Matteo; Siomava, Natalia; Bier, Ethan

    2017-12-23

    The knirps ( kni ) locus encodes transcription factors required for induction of the L2 wing vein in Drosophila . Here, we employ diverse CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing tools to generate a series of targeted lesions within the endogenous cis-regulatory module (CRM) required for kni expression in the L2 vein primordium. Phenotypic analysis of these ' in locus ' mutations based on both expression of Kni protein and adult wing phenotypes, reveals novel unexpected features of L2-CRM function including evidence for a chromosome pairing-dependent process that promotes transcription. We also demonstrate that self-propagating active genetic elements (CopyCat elements) can efficiently delete and replace the L2-CRM with orthologous sequences from other divergent fly species. Wing vein phenotypes resulting from these trans-species enhancer replacements parallel features of the respective donor fly species. This highly sensitive phenotypic readout of enhancer function in a native genomic context reveals novel features of CRM function undetected by traditional reporter gene analysis. © 2017, Xu et al.

  1. Geometry Revealed

    CERN Document Server

    Berger, Marcel

    2010-01-01

    Both classical geometry and modern differential geometry have been active subjects of research throughout the 20th century and lie at the heart of many recent advances in mathematics and physics. The underlying motivating concept for the present book is that it offers readers the elements of a modern geometric culture by means of a whole series of visually appealing unsolved (or recently solved) problems that require the creation of concepts and tools of varying abstraction. Starting with such natural, classical objects as lines, planes, circles, spheres, polygons, polyhedra, curves, surfaces,

  2. Loss of Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Kinase Kinase 4 (MAP3K4) Reveals a Requirement for MAPK Signalling in Mouse Sex Determination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bogani, Debora; Siggers, Pam; Brixey, Rachel; Warr, Nick; Beddow, Sarah; Edwards, Jessica; Williams, Debbie; Wilhelm, Dagmar; Koopman, Peter; Flavell, Richard A.; Chi, Hongbo; Ostrer, Harry; Wells, Sara; Cheeseman, Michael; Greenfield, Andy

    2009-01-01

    Sex determination in mammals is controlled by the presence or absence of the Y-linked gene SRY. In the developing male (XY) gonad, sex-determining region of the Y (SRY) protein acts to up-regulate expression of the related gene, SOX9, a transcriptional regulator that in turn initiates a downstream pathway of testis development, whilst also suppressing ovary development. Despite the requirement for a number of transcription factors and secreted signalling molecules in sex determination, intracellular signalling components functioning in this process have not been defined. Here we report a role for the phylogenetically ancient mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signalling pathway in mouse sex determination. Using a forward genetic screen, we identified the recessive boygirl (byg) mutation. On the C57BL/6J background, embryos homozygous for byg exhibit consistent XY gonadal sex reversal. The byg mutation is an A to T transversion causing a premature stop codon in the gene encoding MAP3K4 (also known as MEKK4), a mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase. Analysis of XY byg/byg gonads at 11.5 d post coitum reveals a growth deficit and a failure to support mesonephric cell migration, both early cellular processes normally associated with testis development. Expression analysis of mutant XY gonads at the same stage also reveals a dramatic reduction in Sox9 and, crucially, Sry at the transcript and protein levels. Moreover, we describe experiments showing the presence of activated MKK4, a direct target of MAP3K4, and activated p38 in the coelomic region of the XY gonad at 11.5 d post coitum, establishing a link between MAPK signalling in proliferating gonadal somatic cells and regulation of Sry expression. Finally, we provide evidence that haploinsufficiency for Map3k4 accounts for T-associated sex reversal (Tas). These data demonstrate that MAP3K4-dependent signalling events are required for normal expression of Sry during testis development, and create a novel

  3. Loss of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase 4 (MAP3K4 reveals a requirement for MAPK signalling in mouse sex determination.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Debora Bogani

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Sex determination in mammals is controlled by the presence or absence of the Y-linked gene SRY. In the developing male (XY gonad, sex-determining region of the Y (SRY protein acts to up-regulate expression of the related gene, SOX9, a transcriptional regulator that in turn initiates a downstream pathway of testis development, whilst also suppressing ovary development. Despite the requirement for a number of transcription factors and secreted signalling molecules in sex determination, intracellular signalling components functioning in this process have not been defined. Here we report a role for the phylogenetically ancient mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK signalling pathway in mouse sex determination. Using a forward genetic screen, we identified the recessive boygirl (byg mutation. On the C57BL/6J background, embryos homozygous for byg exhibit consistent XY gonadal sex reversal. The byg mutation is an A to T transversion causing a premature stop codon in the gene encoding MAP3K4 (also known as MEKK4, a mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase. Analysis of XY byg/byg gonads at 11.5 d post coitum reveals a growth deficit and a failure to support mesonephric cell migration, both early cellular processes normally associated with testis development. Expression analysis of mutant XY gonads at the same stage also reveals a dramatic reduction in Sox9 and, crucially, Sry at the transcript and protein levels. Moreover, we describe experiments showing the presence of activated MKK4, a direct target of MAP3K4, and activated p38 in the coelomic region of the XY gonad at 11.5 d post coitum, establishing a link between MAPK signalling in proliferating gonadal somatic cells and regulation of Sry expression. Finally, we provide evidence that haploinsufficiency for Map3k4 accounts for T-associated sex reversal (Tas. These data demonstrate that MAP3K4-dependent signalling events are required for normal expression of Sry during testis development, and

  4. Changes in Male Rat Sexual Behavior and Brain Activity Revealed by Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Response to Chronic Mild Stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Guotao; Yang, Baibing; Chen, Jianhuai; Zhu, Leilei; Jiang, Hesong; Yu, Wen; Zang, Fengchao; Chen, Yun; Dai, Yutian

    2018-02-01

    G, Yang B, Chen J, et al. Changes in Male Rat Sexual Behavior and Brain Activity Revealed by Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Response to Chronic Mild Stress. J Sex Med 2018;15:136-147. Copyright © 2017 International Society for Sexual Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Studies on lactoferricin-derived Escherichia coli membrane-active peptides reveal differences in the mechanism of N-acylated versus nonacylated peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zweytick, Dagmar; Deutsch, Günter; Andrä, Jörg; Blondelle, Sylvie E; Vollmer, Ekkehard; Jerala, Roman; Lohner, Karl

    2011-06-17

    To improve the low antimicrobial activity of LF11, an 11-mer peptide derived from human lactoferricin, mutant sequences were designed based on the defined structure of LF11 in the lipidic environment. Thus, deletion of noncharged polar residues and strengthening of the hydrophobic N-terminal part upon adding a bulky hydrophobic amino acid or N-acylation resulted in enhanced antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli, which correlated with the peptides' degree of perturbation of bacterial membrane mimics. Nonacylated and N-acylated peptides exhibited different effects at a molecular level. Nonacylated peptides induced segregation of peptide-enriched and peptide-poor lipid domains in negatively charged bilayers, although N-acylated peptides formed small heterogeneous domains resulting in a higher degree of packing defects. Additionally, only N-acylated peptides perturbed the lateral packing of neutral lipids and exhibited increased permeability of E. coli lipid vesicles. The latter did not correlate with the extent of improvement of the antimicrobial activity, which could be explained by the fact that elevated binding of N-acylated peptides to lipopolysaccharides of the outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria seems to counteract the elevated membrane permeabilization, reflected in the respective minimal inhibitory concentration for E. coli. The antimicrobial activity of the peptides correlated with an increase of membrane curvature stress and hence bilayer instability. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that only the N-acylated peptides induced tubular protrusions from the outer membrane, whereas all peptides caused detachment of the outer and inner membrane of E. coli bacteria. Viability tests demonstrated that these bacteria were dead before onset of visible cell lysis.

  6. Studies on Lactoferricin-derived Escherichia coli Membrane-active Peptides Reveal Differences in the Mechanism of N-Acylated Versus Nonacylated Peptides*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zweytick, Dagmar; Deutsch, Günter; Andrä, Jörg; Blondelle, Sylvie E.; Vollmer, Ekkehard; Jerala, Roman; Lohner, Karl

    2011-01-01

    To improve the low antimicrobial activity of LF11, an 11-mer peptide derived from human lactoferricin, mutant sequences were designed based on the defined structure of LF11 in the lipidic environment. Thus, deletion of noncharged polar residues and strengthening of the hydrophobic N-terminal part upon adding a bulky hydrophobic amino acid or N-acylation resulted in enhanced antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli, which correlated with the peptides' degree of perturbation of bacterial membrane mimics. Nonacylated and N-acylated peptides exhibited different effects at a molecular level. Nonacylated peptides induced segregation of peptide-enriched and peptide-poor lipid domains in negatively charged bilayers, although N-acylated peptides formed small heterogeneous domains resulting in a higher degree of packing defects. Additionally, only N-acylated peptides perturbed the lateral packing of neutral lipids and exhibited increased permeability of E. coli lipid vesicles. The latter did not correlate with the extent of improvement of the antimicrobial activity, which could be explained by the fact that elevated binding of N-acylated peptides to lipopolysaccharides of the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria seems to counteract the elevated membrane permeabilization, reflected in the respective minimal inhibitory concentration for E. coli. The antimicrobial activity of the peptides correlated with an increase of membrane curvature stress and hence bilayer instability. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that only the N-acylated peptides induced tubular protrusions from the outer membrane, whereas all peptides caused detachment of the outer and inner membrane of E. coli bacteria. Viability tests demonstrated that these bacteria were dead before onset of visible cell lysis. PMID:21515687

  7. Molecular and Silica-Supported Molybdenum Alkyne Metathesis Catalysts: Influence of Electronics and Dynamics on Activity Revealed by Kinetics, Solid-State NMR, and Chemical Shift Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estes, Deven P; Gordon, Christopher P; Fedorov, Alexey; Liao, Wei-Chih; Ehrhorn, Henrike; Bittner, Celine; Zier, Manuel Luca; Bockfeld, Dirk; Chan, Ka Wing; Eisenstein, Odile; Raynaud, Christophe; Tamm, Matthias; Copéret, Christophe

    2017-12-06

    Molybdenum-based molecular alkylidyne complexes of the type [MesC≡Mo{OC(CH 3 ) 3-x (CF 3 ) x } 3 ] (MoF 0 , x = 0; MoF 3 , x = 1; MoF 6 , x = 2; MoF 9 , x = 3; Mes = 2,4,6-trimethylphenyl) and their silica-supported analogues are prepared and characterized at the molecular level, in particular by solid-state NMR, and their alkyne metathesis catalytic activity is evaluated. The 13 C NMR chemical shift of the alkylidyne carbon increases with increasing number of fluorine atoms on the alkoxide ligands for both molecular and supported catalysts but with more shielded values for the supported complexes. The activity of these catalysts increases in the order MoF 0 molecular and supported species. Detailed solid-state NMR analysis of molecular and silica-supported metal alkylidyne catalysts coupled with DFT/ZORA calculations rationalize the NMR spectroscopic signatures and discernible activity trends at the frontier orbital level: (1) increasing the number of fluorine atoms lowers the energy of the π*(M≡C) orbital, explaining the more deshielded chemical shift values; it also leads to an increased electrophilicity and higher reactivity for catalysts up to MoF 6 , prior to a sharp decrease in reactivity for MoF 9 due to the formation of stable metallacyclobutadiene intermediates; (2) the silica-supported catalysts are less active than their molecular analogues because they are less electrophilic and dynamic, as revealed by their 13 C NMR chemical shift tensors.

  8. Structure-activity relationships for flavone interactions with amyloid β reveal a novel anti-aggregatory and neuroprotective effect of 2',3',4'-trihydroxyflavone (2-D08).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, Dylan T; Das, Sukanya; Ridell, Jessica; Smid, Scott D

    2017-07-15

    Naturally-occurring flavonoids have well documented anti-aggregatory and neuroprotective properties against the hallmark toxic protein in Alzheimer's disease, amyloid β (Aβ). However the extensive diversity of flavonoids has limited the insight into the precise structure-activity relationships that confer such bioactive properties against the Aβ protein. In the present study we have characterised the Aβ binding properties, anti-aggregatory and neuroprotective effects of a discreet set of flavones, including the recently described novel protein sumoylation inhibitor 2',3',4'-trihydroxyflavone (2-D08). Quercetin, transilitin, jaceosidin, nobiletin and 2-D08 were incubated with human Aβ 1-42 for 48h in vitro and effects on Aβ fibrillisation kinetics and morphology measured using Thioflavin T (ThT) and electron microscopy respectively, in addition to effects on neuronal PC12 cell viability. Of the flavones studied, only quercetin, transilitin and 2-D08 significantly inhibited Aβ 1-42 aggregation and toxicity in PC12 cells. Of those, 2-D08 was the most effective inhibitor. The strong anti-amyloid activity of 2-D08 indicates that extensive hydroxylation in the B ring is the most important determinant of activity against β amyloid within the flavone scaffold. The lack of efficacy of jaceosidin and nobiletin indicate that extension of B ring hydroxylation with methoxyl groups result in an incremental loss of anti-fibrillar and neuroprotective activity, highlighting the constraint to vicinal hydroxyl groups in the B ring for effective inhibition of aggregation. These findings reveal further structural insights into anti-amyloid bioactivity of flavonoids in addition to a novel and efficacious anti-aggregatory and neuroprotective effect of the semi-synthetic flavone and sumoylation inhibitor 2',3',4'-trihydroxyflavone (2-D08). Such modified flavones may facilitate drug development targeting multiple pathways in neurodegenerative disease. Crown Copyright © 2017

  9. Genetic activation, inactivation and deletion reveal a limited and nuanced role for somatostatin-containing basal forebrain neurons in behavioral state control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anaclet, Christelle; De Luca, Roberto; Venner, Anne; Malyshevskaya, Olga; Lazarus, Michael; Arrigoni, Elda; Fuller, Patrick M

    2018-05-07

    Recent studies have identified an especially important role for basal forebrain GABAergic (BF VGAT ) neurons in the regulation of behavioral waking and fast cortical rhythms associated with cognition. However, BF VGAT neurons comprise several neurochemically and anatomically distinct sub-populations, including parvalbumin- and somatostatin-containing BF VGAT neurons (BF Parv and BF SOM ), and it was recently reported that optogenetic activation of BF SOM neurons increases the probability of a wakefulness to non-rapid-eye movement (NREM) sleep transition when stimulated during the animal's rest period. This finding was unexpected given that most BF SOM neurons are not NREM sleep active and that central administration of the synthetic SOM analog, octreotide, suppresses NREM sleep or increases REM sleep. Here we employed a combination of genetically-driven chemogenetic and optogenetic activation, chemogenetic inhibition and ablation approaches to further explore the in vivo role of BF SOM neurons in arousal control. Our findings indicate that acute activation or inhibition of BF SOM neurons is neither wakefulness- nor NREM sleep-promoting, is without significant effect on the EEG, and that chronic loss of these neurons is without effect on total 24h sleep amounts, although a small but significant increase in waking was observed in the lesioned mice during the early active period. Our in vitro cell recordings further reveal electrophysiological heterogeneity in BF SOM neurons, specifically suggesting at least two distinct sub-populations. Taken together our data support the more nuanced view that BF SOM are electrically heterogeneous and are not NREM sleep- or wake-promoting per se , but may exert, in particular during the early active period, a modest inhibitory influence on arousal circuitry. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The cellular basal forebrain (BF) is a highly complex area of the brain that is implicated in a wide-range of higher-level neurobiological processes

  10. Diverse Brain Myeloid Expression Profiles Reveal Distinct Microglial Activation States and Aspects of Alzheimer’s Disease Not Evident in Mouse Models

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    Brad A. Friedman

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Microglia, the CNS-resident immune cells, play important roles in disease, but the spectrum of their possible activation states is not well understood. We derived co-regulated gene modules from transcriptional profiles of CNS myeloid cells of diverse mouse models, including new tauopathy model datasets. Using these modules to interpret single-cell data from an Alzheimer’s disease (AD model, we identified microglial subsets—distinct from previously reported “disease-associated microglia”—expressing interferon-related or proliferation modules. We then analyzed whole-tissue RNA profiles from human neurodegenerative diseases, including a new AD dataset. Correcting for altered cellular composition of AD tissue, we observed elevated expression of the neurodegeneration-related modules, but also modules not implicated using expression profiles from mouse models alone. We provide a searchable, interactive database for exploring gene expression in all these datasets (http://research-pub.gene.com/BrainMyeloidLandscape. Understanding the dimensions of CNS myeloid cell activation in human disease may reveal opportunities for therapeutic intervention.

  11. Vascular Targeting in Pancreatic Cancer: The Novel Tubulin-Binding Agent ZD6126 Reveals Antitumor Activity in Primary and Metastatic Tumor Models

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    Axel Kleespies

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available ZD6126 is a novel vascular-targeting agent that acts by disrupting the tubulin cytoskeleton of an immature tumor endothelium, leading to an occlusion of tumor blood vessels and a subsequent tumor necrosis. We wanted to evaluate ZD6126 in primary and metastatic tumor models of human pancreatic cancer. Nude mice were injected orthotopically with L3.6pl pancreatic cancer cells. In single and multiple dosing experiments, mice received ZD6126, gemcitabine, a combination of both agents, or no treatment. For the induction of metastatic disease, additional groups of mice were injected with L3.6pl cells into the spleen. Twenty-four hours after a single-dose treatment, ZD6126 therapy led to an extensive central tumor necrosis, which was not seen after gemcitabine treatment. Multiple dosing of ZD6126 resulted in a significant growth inhibition of primary tumors and a marked reduction of spontaneous liver and lymph node metastases. Experimental metastatic disease could be significantly controlled by a combination of ZD6126 and gemcitabine, as shown by a reduction of the number and size of established liver metastases. As shown by additional in vitro and in vivo experiments, possible mechanisms involve antivascular activities and subsequent antiproliferative and proapoptotic effects of ZD6126 on tumor cells, whereas direct activities against tumor cells seem unlikely. These data highlight the antitumor and antimetastatic effects of ZD6126 in human pancreatic cancer and reveal benefits of adding ZD6126 to standard gemcitabine therapy.

  12. KMOS"3"D Reveals Low-level Star Formation Activity in Massive Quiescent Galaxies at 0.7 < z < 2.7

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Belli, Sirio; Genzel, Reinhard; Förster Schreiber, Natascha M.; Wisnioski, Emily; Wilman, David J.; Mendel, J. Trevor; Beifiori, Alessandra; Bender, Ralf; Burkert, Andreas; Chan, Jeffrey; Davies, Rebecca L.; Davies, Ric; Fabricius, Maximilian; Fossati, Matteo; Galametz, Audrey; Lang, Philipp; Lutz, Dieter; Wuyts, Stijn; Brammer, Gabriel B.; Momcheva, Ivelina G.

    2017-01-01

    We explore the H α emission in the massive quiescent galaxies observed by the KMOS"3"D survey at 0.7 < z < 2.7. The H α line is robustly detected in 20 out of 120 UVJ -selected quiescent galaxies, and we classify the emission mechanism using the H α line width and the [N ii]/H α line ratio. We find that AGNs are likely to be responsible for the line emission in more than half of the cases. We also find robust evidence for star formation activity in nine quiescent galaxies, which we explore in detail. The H α kinematics reveal rotating disks in five of the nine galaxies. The dust-corrected H α star formation rates are low (0.2–7 M _⊙ yr"−"1), and place these systems significantly below the main sequence. The 24 μ m-based, infrared luminosities, instead, overestimate the star formation rates. These galaxies present a lower gas-phase metallicity compared to star-forming objects with similar stellar mass, and many of them have close companions. We therefore conclude that the low-level star formation activity in these nine quiescent galaxies is likely to be fueled by inflowing gas or minor mergers, and could be a sign of rejuvenation events.

  13. Deep Sequencing Reveals the Complete Genome and Evidence for Transcriptional Activity of the First Virus-Like Sequences Identified in Aristotelia chilensis (Maqui Berry

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    Javier Villacreses

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Here, we report the genome sequence and evidence for transcriptional activity of a virus-like element in the native Chilean berry tree Aristotelia chilensis. We propose to name the endogenous sequence as Aristotelia chilensis Virus 1 (AcV1. High-throughput sequencing of the genome of this tree uncovered an endogenous viral element, with a size of 7122 bp, corresponding to the complete genome of AcV1. Its sequence contains three open reading frames (ORFs: ORFs 1 and 2 shares 66%–73% amino acid similarity with members of the Caulimoviridae virus family, especially the Petunia vein clearing virus (PVCV, Petuvirus genus. ORF1 encodes a movement protein (MP; ORF2 a Reverse Transcriptase (RT and a Ribonuclease H (RNase H domain; and ORF3 showed no amino acid sequence similarity with any other known virus proteins. Analogous to other known endogenous pararetrovirus sequences (EPRVs, AcV1 is integrated in the genome of Maqui Berry and showed low viral transcriptional activity, which was detected by deep sequencing technology (DNA and RNA-seq. Phylogenetic analysis of AcV1 and other pararetroviruses revealed a closer resemblance with Petuvirus. Overall, our data suggests that AcV1 could be a new member of Caulimoviridae family, genus Petuvirus, and the first evidence of this kind of virus in a fruit plant.

  14. KMOS{sup 3D} Reveals Low-level Star Formation Activity in Massive Quiescent Galaxies at 0.7 < z < 2.7

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Belli, Sirio; Genzel, Reinhard; Förster Schreiber, Natascha M.; Wisnioski, Emily; Wilman, David J.; Mendel, J. Trevor; Beifiori, Alessandra; Bender, Ralf; Burkert, Andreas; Chan, Jeffrey; Davies, Rebecca L.; Davies, Ric; Fabricius, Maximilian; Fossati, Matteo; Galametz, Audrey; Lang, Philipp; Lutz, Dieter [Max-Planck-Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik (MPE), Giessenbachstr. 1, D-85748 Garching (Germany); Wuyts, Stijn [Department of Physics, University of Bath, Claverton Down, Bath, BA2 7AY (United Kingdom); Brammer, Gabriel B.; Momcheva, Ivelina G. [Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Drive, Baltimore, MD 21218 (United States); and others

    2017-05-20

    We explore the H α emission in the massive quiescent galaxies observed by the KMOS{sup 3D} survey at 0.7 < z < 2.7. The H α line is robustly detected in 20 out of 120 UVJ -selected quiescent galaxies, and we classify the emission mechanism using the H α line width and the [N ii]/H α line ratio. We find that AGNs are likely to be responsible for the line emission in more than half of the cases. We also find robust evidence for star formation activity in nine quiescent galaxies, which we explore in detail. The H α kinematics reveal rotating disks in five of the nine galaxies. The dust-corrected H α star formation rates are low (0.2–7 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}), and place these systems significantly below the main sequence. The 24 μ m-based, infrared luminosities, instead, overestimate the star formation rates. These galaxies present a lower gas-phase metallicity compared to star-forming objects with similar stellar mass, and many of them have close companions. We therefore conclude that the low-level star formation activity in these nine quiescent galaxies is likely to be fueled by inflowing gas or minor mergers, and could be a sign of rejuvenation events.

  15. Similar prefrontal cortical activities between general fluid intelligence and visuospatial working memory tasks in preschool children as revealed by optical topography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuwajima, Mariko; Sawaguchi, Toshiyuki

    2010-10-01

    General fluid intelligence (gF) is a major component of intellect in both adults and children. Whereas its neural substrates have been studied relatively thoroughly in adults, those are poorly understood in children, particularly preschoolers. Here, we hypothesized that gF and visuospatial working memory share a common neural system within the lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) during the preschool years (4-6 years). At the behavioral level, we found that gF positively and significantly correlated with abilities (especially accuracy) in visuospatial working memory. Optical topography revealed that the LPFC of preschoolers was activated and deactivated during the visuospatial working memory task and the gF task. We found that the spatio-temporal features of neural activity in the LPFC were similar for both the visuospatial working memory task and the gF task. Further, 2 months of training for the visuospatial working memory task significantly increased gF in the preschoolers. These findings suggest that a common neural system in the LPFC is recruited to improve the visuospatial working memory and gF in preschoolers. Efficient recruitment of this neural system may be important for good performance in these functions in preschoolers, and behavioral training using this system would help to increase gF at these ages.

  16. Enantiospecific (+)- and (-)-germacrene D synthases, cloned from goldenrod, reveal a functionally active variant of the universal isoprenoid-biosynthesis aspartate-rich motif.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prosser, Ian; Altug, Iris G; Phillips, Andy L; König, Wilfried A; Bouwmeester, Harro J; Beale, Michael H

    2004-12-15

    The naturally occurring, volatile sesquiterpene hydrocarbon germacrene D has strong effects on insect behaviour and genes encoding enzymes that produce this compound are of interest in the study of plant-insect interactions and in a number of biotechnological approaches to pest control. Goldenrod, Solidago canadensis, is unusual in that it produces both enantiomers of germacrene D. Two new sesquiterpene synthase cDNAs, designated Sc11 and Sc19, have been isolated from goldenrod and functional expression in Escherichia coli identified Sc11 as (+)-germacrene D synthase and Sc19 as (-)-germacrene D synthase. Thus, the enantiomers of germacrene D are the products of separate, but closely related (85% amino-acid identity), enzymes. Unlike other sesquiterpene synthases and the related monoterpene synthases and prenyl transferases, which contain the characteristic amino-acid motif DDXX(D,E), Sc11 is unusual in that this motif occurs as (303)NDTYD. Mutagenesis of this motif to (303)DDTYD gave rise to an enzyme that fully retained (+)-germacrene D synthase activity. The converse mutation in Sc19 (D303N) resulted in a less efficient but functional enzyme. Mutagenesis of position 303 to glutamate in both enzymes resulted in loss of activity. These results indicate that the magnesium ion-binding role of the first aspartate in the DDXXD motif may not be as critical as previously thought. Further amino-acid sequence comparisons and molecular modelling of the enzyme structures revealed that very subtle changes to the active site of this family of enzymes are required to alter the reaction pathway to form, in this case, different enantiomers from the same enzyme-bound carbocationic intermediate.

  17. Cancer gene profiling in non-small cell lung cancers reveals activating mutations in JAK2 and JAK3 with therapeutic implications

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    Shuyu D. Li

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Next-generation sequencing (NGS of cancer gene panels are widely applied to enable personalized cancer therapy and to identify novel oncogenic mutations. Methods We performed targeted NGS on 932 clinical cases of non-small-cell lung cancers (NSCLCs using the Ion AmpliSeq™ Cancer Hotspot panel v2 assay. Results Actionable mutations were identified in 65% of the cases with available targeted therapeutic options, including 26% of the patients with mutations in National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN guideline genes. Most notably, we discovered JAK2 p.V617F somatic mutation, a hallmark of myeloproliferative neoplasms, in 1% (9/932 of the NSCLCs. Analysis of cancer cell line pharmacogenomic data showed that a high level of JAK2 expression in a panel of NSCLC cell lines is correlated with increased sensitivity to a selective JAK2 inhibitor. Further analysis of TCGA genomic data revealed JAK2 gain or loss due to genetic alterations in NSCLC clinical samples are associated with significantly elevated or reduced PD-L1 expression, suggesting that the activating JAK2 p.V617F mutation could confer sensitivity to both JAK inhibitors and anti-PD1 immunotherapy. We also detected JAK3 germline activating mutations in 6.7% (62/932 of the patients who may benefit from anti-PD1 treatment, in light of recent findings that JAK3 mutations upregulate PD-L1 expression. Conclusion Taken together, this study demonstrated the clinical utility of targeted NGS with a focused hotspot cancer gene panel in NSCLCs and identified activating mutations in JAK2 and JAK3 with clinical implications inferred through integrative analysis of cancer genetic, genomic, and pharmacogenomic data. The potential of JAK2 and JAK3 mutations as response markers for the targeted therapy against JAK kinases or anti-PD1 immunotherapy warrants further investigation.

  18. Animal-Borne Imaging Reveals Novel Insights into the Foraging Behaviors and Diel Activity of a Large-Bodied Apex Predator, the American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nifong, James C.; Nifong, Rachel L.; Silliman, Brian R.; Lowers, Russell H.; Guillette, Louis J.; Ferguson, Jake M.; Welsh, Matthew; Abernathy, Kyler; Marshall, Greg

    2014-01-01

    Large-bodied, top- and apex predators (e.g., crocodilians, sharks, wolves, killer whales) can exert strong top-down effects within ecological communities through their interactions with prey. Due to inherent difficulties while studying the behavior of these often dangerous predatory species, relatively little is known regarding their feeding behaviors and activity patterns, information that is essential to understanding their role in regulating food web dynamics and ecological processes. Here we use animal-borne imaging systems (Crittercam) to study the foraging behavior and activity patterns of a cryptic, large-bodied predator, the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) in two estuaries of coastal Florida, USA. Using retrieved video data we examine the variation in foraging behaviors and activity patterns due to abiotic factors. We found the frequency of prey-attacks (mean = 0.49 prey attacks/hour) as well as the probability of prey-capture success (mean = 0.52 per attack) were significantly affected by time of day. Alligators attempted to capture prey most frequently during the night. Probability of prey-capture success per attack was highest during morning hours and sequentially lower during day, night, and sunset, respectively. Position in the water column also significantly affected prey-capture success, as individuals’ experienced two-fold greater success when attacking prey while submerged. These estimates are the first for wild adult American alligators and one of the few examples for any crocodilian species worldwide. More broadly, these results reveal that our understandings of crocodilian foraging behaviors are biased due to previous studies containing limited observations of cryptic and nocturnal foraging interactions. Our results can be used to inform greater understanding regarding the top-down effects of American alligators in estuarine food webs. Additionally, our results highlight the importance and power of using animal

  19. Seasonal deformation and active landslide thickness revealed by spaceborne InSAR observations: a case study of Crescent lake landslide, WA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, X.; Lu, Z.; Pierson, T. C.; Kramer, R.

    2017-12-01

    Understanding the precipitation triggering mechanism and quantifying the creeping landslide thickness are important to conduct early warnings and estimate potential failure volume and runout extent. However, it is problematic to use traditional geodetic methods to identify the active landslide boundaries and capture the transient mobility over hilly and vegetated landslide landscape. Here we present a novel InSAR processing strategy to characterize the spatial distribution and temporal behavior of the landslide movement in response to precipitation over Crescent lake landslide, WA using spaceborne SAR data of ALOS-1 PALSAR-1, ALOS-2 PALSAR-2 and Sentinel-1A. Time-series measurements reveal the seasonal deformation of landslide lobe, showing a much larger magnitude compared to the motion at lower elevated terrain expressed by an off-slide GPS station, suggesting an amplified hydrological loading effect associated with thick unconsolidated zone. Thanks to the high temporal resolution of Sentinel-1A and on-slide GPS data, we capture the progressive incipient motions in the wet season, characterized by the elastic slope-normal contraction due to loading during antecedent rainfall, followed by downslope slip and lateral propagation in less than one-month intense precipitation, because the elevated pore pressure and the reduced friction at the basal instigate the shear motion. The proposed threshold precipitation concept, in terms of the intensity and duration, can be an integral part of the landslide warning system. The active thickness can be inverted using three-dimensional (3D) displacement map based on the principle of mass conservation. We extract quasi-3D displacements using two independent (ascending and descending) InSAR measurements assuming that the targets move exclusively along the aspect direction on the slope-parallel plane. This routine of the extraction of quasi-3D displacement and the inversion of active lobe thickness can be utilized in the study of

  20. Transcriptome, expression, and activity analyses reveal a vital heat shock protein 70 in the stress response of stony coral Pocillopora damicornis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yidan; Zhou, Zhi; Wang, Lingui; Huang, Bo

    2018-02-12

    Coral bleaching occurs worldwide with increasing frequencies and intensities, which is caused by the stress response of stony coral to environmental change, especially increased sea surface temperature. In the present study, transcriptome, expression, and activity analyses were employed to illustrate the underlying molecular mechanisms of heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) in the stress response of coral to environmental changes. The domain analyses of assembled transcripts revealed 30 HSP70 gene contigs in stony coral Pocillopora damicornis. One crucial HSP70 (PdHSP70) was observed, whose expressions were induced by both elevated temperature and ammonium after expression difference analysis. The complete complementary DNA (cDNA) sequence of PdHSP70 was identified, which encoded a polypeptide of 650 amino acids with a molecular weight of 71.93 kDa. The deduced amino acid sequence of PdHSP70 contained a HSP70 domain (from Pro8 to Gly616), and it shared the highest similarity (95%) with HSP70 from Stylophora pistillata. The expression level of PdHSP70 gene increased significantly at 12 h, and returned to the initial level at 24 h after the stress of high temperature (32 °C). The cDNA fragment encoding the mature peptide of PdHSP70 was recombined and expressed in the prokaryotic expression system. The ATPase activity of recombinant PdHSP70 protein was determined, and it did not change significantly in a wide range of temperature from 25 to 40 °C. These results collectively suggested that PdHSP70 was a vital heat shock protein 70 in the stony coral P. damicornis, whose mRNA expression could be induced by diverse environmental stress and whose activity could remain stable under heat stress. PdHSP70 might be involved in the regulation of the bleaching owing to heat stress in the stony coral P. damicornis.

  1. Expression Profiling of Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Genes Reveals Their Evolutionary and Functional Diversity in Different Rubber Tree (Hevea brasiliensis Cultivars

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    Xiang Jin

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis is the only commercially cultivated plant for producing natural rubber, one of the most essential industrial raw materials. Knowledge of the evolutionary and functional characteristics of kinases in H. brasiliensis is limited because of the long growth period and lack of well annotated genome information. Here, we reported mitogen-activated protein kinases in H. brasiliensis (HbMPKs by manually checking and correcting the rubber tree genome. Of the 20 identified HbMPKs, four members were validated by proteomic data. Protein motif and phylogenetic analyses classified these members into four known groups comprising Thr-Glu-Tyr (TEY and Thr-Asp-Tyr (TDY domains, respectively. Evolutionary and syntenic analyses suggested four duplication events: HbMPK3/HbMPK6, HbMPK8/HbMPK9/HbMPK15, HbMPK10/HbMPK12 and HbMPK11/HbMPK16/HbMPK19. Expression profiling of the identified HbMPKs in roots, stems, leaves and latex obtained from three cultivars with different latex yield ability revealed tissue- and variety-expression specificity of HbMPK paralogues. Gene expression patterns under osmotic, oxidative, salt and cold stresses, combined with cis-element distribution analyses, indicated different regulation patterns of HbMPK paralogues. Further, Ka/Ks and Tajima analyses suggested an accelerated evolutionary rate in paralogues HbMPK10/12. These results revealed HbMPKs have diverse functions in natural rubber biosynthesis, and highlighted the potential possibility of using MPKs to improve stress tolerance in future rubber tree breeding.

  2. Comparative proteomic analyses reveal that FlbA down-regulates gliT expression and SOD activity in Aspergillus fumigatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Kwang-Soo; Park, Hee-Soo; Kim, Young-Hwan; Yu, Jae-Hyuk

    2013-07-11

    FlbA is a regulator of G-protein signaling protein that plays a central role in attenuating heterotrimeric G-protein mediated vegetative growth signaling in Aspergillus. The deletion of flbA (∆flbA) in the opportunistic human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus results in accelerated cell death and autolysis in submerged culture. To further investigate the effects of ∆flbA on intracellular protein levels we carried out 2-D proteome analyses of 2-day old submerged cultures of ∆flbA and wild type (WT) strains and observed 160 differentially expressed proteins. Via nano-LC-ESI-MS/MS analyses, we revealed the identity of 10 and 2 proteins exhibiting high and low level accumulation, respectively, in ∆flbA strain. Notably, the GliT protein is accumulated at about 1800-fold higher levels in ∆flbA than WT. Moreover, GliT is secreted at high levels from ∆flbA strain, whereas Sod1 (superoxide dismutase) is secreted at a higher level in WT. Northern blot analyses reveal that ∆flbA results in elevated accumulation of gliT mRNA. Consequently, ∆flbA strain exhibits enhanced tolerance to gliotoxin toxicity. Finally, ∆flbA strain displayed enhanced SOD activity and elevated resistance to menadione and paraquat. In summary, FlbA-mediated signaling control negatively affects cellular responses associated with detoxification of reactive oxygen species and of exogenous gliotoxin in A. fumigatus. Regulator of G protein Signaling (RGS) proteins play crucial roles in fundamental biological processes in filamentous fungi. FlbA is the first studied filamentous fungal RGS protein, yet much remains to be understood about its roles in the opportunistic human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus. In the present study, we examined the effects of the deletion of flbA using comprehensive analyses of the intra- and extracellular proteomes of A. fumigatus wild type and the flbA deletion mutant. Via MS analyses, we identified 10 proteins exhibiting high level accumulation in the flbA deletion

  3. When genome-based approach meets the ‘old but good’: revealing genes involved in the antibacterial activity of Pseudomonas sp. P482 against soft rot pathogens.

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    Dorota Magdalena Krzyżanowska

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Dickeya solani and Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. brasili¬ense are recently established species of bacterial plant pathogens causing black leg and soft rot of many vegetables and ornamental plants. Pseudomonas sp. strain P482 inhibits the growth of these pathogens, a desired trait considering the limited measures to combat these diseases. In this study, we determined the genetic background of the antibacterial activity of P482, and established the phylogenetic position of this strain.Pseudomonas sp. P482 was classified as Pseudomonas donghuensis. Genome mining revealed that the P482 genome does not contain genes determining the synthesis of known antimicrobials. However, the ClusterFinder algorithm, designed to detect atypical or novel classes of secondary metabolite gene clusters, predicted 18 such clusters in the genome. Screening of a Tn5 mutant library yielded an antimicrobial negative transposon mutant. The transposon insertion was located in a gene encoding an HpcH/HpaI aldolase/citrate lyase family protein. This gene is located in a hypothetical cluster predicted by the ClusterFinder, together with the downstream homologues of four nfs genes, that confer production of a nonfluorescent siderophore by P. donghuensis HYST. Site-directed inactivation of the HpcH/HpaI aldolase gene, the adjacent short chain dehydrogenase gene, as well as a homologue of an essential nfs cluster gene, all abolished the antimicrobial activity of the P482, suggesting their involvement in a common biosynthesis pathway. However, none of the mutants showed a decreased siderophore yield, neither was the antimicrobial activity of the wild type P482 compromised by high iron bioavailability.A genomic region comprising the nfs cluster and three upstream genes is involved in the antibacterial activity of P. donghuensis P482 against D. solani and P. carotovorum subsp. brasiliense. The genes studied are unique to the two known P. donghuensis strains. This study

  4. Changes in Metabolically Active Bacterial Community during Rumen Development, and Their Alteration by Rhubarb Root Powder Revealed by 16S rRNA Amplicon Sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zuo; Elekwachi, Chijioke; Jiao, Jinzhen; Wang, Min; Tang, Shaoxun; Zhou, Chuanshe; Tan, Zhiliang; Forster, Robert J

    2017-01-01

    The objective of this present study was to explore the initial establishment of metabolically active bacteria and subsequent evolution in four fractions: rumen solid-phase (RS), liquid-phase (RL), protozoa-associated (RP), and epithelium-associated (RE) through early weaning and supplementing rhubarb root powder in 7 different age groups (1, 10, 20, 38, 41, 50, and 60 d) during rumen development. Results of the 16S rRNA sequencing based on RNA isolated from the four fractions revealed that the potentially active bacterial microbiota in four fractions were dominated by the phyla Proteobacteria, Firmicutes , and Bacteroidetes regardless of different ages. An age-dependent increment of Chao 1 richness was observed in the fractions of RL and RE. The principal coordinate analysis (PCoA) indicated that samples in four fractions all clustered based on different age groups, and the structure of the bacterial community in RE was distinct from those in other three fractions. The abundances of Proteobacteria decreased significantly ( P < 0.05) with age, while increases in the abundances of Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes were noted. At the genus level, the abundance of the predominant genus Mannheimia in the Proteobacteria phylum decreased significantly ( P < 0.05) after 1 d, while the genera Quinella, Prevotella, Fretibacterium, Ruminococcus, Lachnospiraceae NK3A20 group , and Atopobium underwent different manners of increases and dominated the bacterial microbiota across four fractions. Variations of the distributions of some specific bacterial genera across fractions were observed, and supplementation of rhubarb affected the relative abundance of various genera of bacteria.

  5. Dual activation of pathways regulated by steroid receptors and peptide growth factors in primary prostate cancer revealed by Factor Analysis of microarray data

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    Fernandez Pedro L

    2005-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We use an approach based on Factor Analysis to analyze datasets generated for transcriptional profiling. The method groups samples into biologically relevant categories, and enables the identification of genes and pathways most significantly associated to each phenotypic group, while allowing for the participation of a given gene in more than one cluster. Genes assigned to each cluster are used for the detection of pathways predominantly activated in that cluster by finding statistically significant associated GO terms. We tested the approach with a published dataset of microarray experiments in yeast. Upon validation with the yeast dataset, we applied the technique to a prostate cancer dataset. Results Two major pathways are shown to be activated in organ-confined, non-metastatic prostate cancer: those regulated by the androgen receptor and by receptor tyrosine kinases. A number of gene markers (HER3, IQGAP2 and POR1 highlighted by the software and related to the later pathway have been validated experimentally a posteriori on independent samples. Conclusion Using a new microarray analysis tool followed by a posteriori experimental validation of the results, we have confirmed several putative markers of malignancy associated with peptide growth factor signalling in prostate cancer and revealed others, most notably ERRB3 (HER3. Our study suggest that, in primary prostate cancer, HER3, together or not with HER4, rather than in receptor complexes involving HER2, could play an important role in the biology of these tumors. These results provide new evidence for the role of receptor tyrosine kinases in the establishment and progression of prostate cancer.

  6. Crystallographic Analysis Reveals a Novel Second Binding Site for Trimethoprim in Active Site Double Mutants of Human Dihydrofolate Reductase†,‡

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cody, Vivian; Pace, Jim; Piraino, Jennifer; Queener, Sherry F.

    2011-01-01

    In order to produce a more potent replacement for trimethoprim (TMP) used as a therapy for Pneumocystis pneumonia and targets dihydrofolate reductase from Pneumocystis jirovecii (pjDHFR), it is necessary to understand the determinants of potency and selectivity against DHFR from the mammalian host and fungal pathogen cells. To this end, active site residues in human (h)DHFR were replaced with those from pjDHFR. Structural data are reported for two complexes of TMP with the double mutants Gln35Ser/Asn64Phe (Q35S/N64F) and Gln35Lys/Asn64Phe (Q35K/N64F) of hDHFR that unexpectedly show evidence for the binding of two molecules of TMP: one molecule that binds in the normal folate binding site and the second molecule that binds in a novel subpocket site such that the mutated residue Phe64 is involved in van der Waals contacts to the trimethoxyphenyl ring of the second TMP molecule. Kinetic data for the binding of TMP to hDHFR and pjDHFR reveal an 84-fold selectivity of TMP against pjDHFR (Ki 49 nM) compared to hDHFR (Ki 4093 nM). Two mutants that contain one substitution from pj- and one from the closely related Pneumocystis carinii DHFR (pcDHFR) (Q35K/N64F and Q35S/N64F) show Ki values of 593 and 617 nM, respectively; these Ki values are well above both the Ki for pjDHFR and are similar to pcDHFR (Q35K/N64F) and Q35S/N64F) (305 nM). These results suggest that active site residues 35 and 64 play key roles in determining selectivity for pneumocystis DHFR, but that other residues contribute to the unique binding of inhibitors to these enzymes. PMID:21684339

  7. Species-related exposure of phase II metabolite gemfibrozil 1-O-β-glucuronide between human and mice: A net induction of mouse P450 activity was revealed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Min; Dai, Manyun; Lin, Hante; Xie, Minzhu; Lin, Jiao; Liu, Aiming; Yang, Julin

    2017-12-01

    Gemfibrozil is a fibrate drug used widely for dyslipidemia associated with atherosclerosis. Clinically, both gemfibrozil and its phase II metabolite gemfibrozil 1-O-β-glucuronide (gem-glu) are involved in drug-drug interaction (DDI). But the DDI risk caused by gem-glu between human and mice has not been compared. In this study, six volunteers were recruited and took a therapeutic dose of gemfibrozil for 3 days for examination of the gemfibrozil and gem-glu level in human. Male mice were fed a gemfibrozil diet (0.75%) for 7 days, following which a cocktail-based inhibitory DDI experiment was performed. Plasma samples and liver tissues from mice were collected for determination of gemfibrozil, gem-glu concentration and cytochrome p450 enzyme (P450) induction analysis. In human, the molar ratio of gem-glu/gemfibrozil was 15% and 10% at the trough concentration and the concentration at 1.5 h after the 6th dose. In contrast, this molar ratio at steady state in mice was 91%, demonstrating a 6- to 9-fold difference compared with that in human. Interestingly, a net induction of P450 activity and in vivo inductive DDI potential in mice was revealed. The P450 activity was not inhibited although the gem-glu concentration was high. These data suggested species difference of relative gem-glu exposure between human and mice, as well as a net inductive DDI potential of gemfibrozil in mouse model. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. Heterogeneous adsorption behavior of landfill leachate on granular activated carbon revealed by fluorescence excitation emission matrix (EEM)-parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sonmin; Hur, Jin

    2016-04-01

    Heterogeneous adsorption behavior of landfill leachate on granular activated carbon (GAC) was investigated by fluorescence excitation-emission matrix (EEM) combined with parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC). The equilibrium adsorption of two leachates on GAC was well described by simple Langmuir and Freundlich isotherm models. More nonlinear isotherm and a slower adsorption rate were found for the leachate with the higher values of specific UV absorbance and humification index, suggesting that the leachate containing more aromatic content and condensed structures might have less accessible sites of GAC surface and a lower degree of diffusive adsorption. Such differences in the adsorption behavior were found even within the bulk leachate as revealed by the dissimilarity in the isotherm and kinetic model parameters between two identified PARAFAC components. For both leachates, terrestrial humic-like fluorescence (C1) component, which is likely associated with relatively large sized and condensed aromatic structures, exhibited a higher isotherm nonlinearity and a slower kinetic rate for GAC adsorption than microbial humic-like (C2) component. Our results were consistent with size exclusion effects, a well-known GAC adsorption mechanism. This study demonstrated the promising benefit of using EEM-PARAFAC for GAC adsorption processes of landfill leachate through fast monitoring of the influent and treated leachate, which can provide valuable information on optimizing treatment processes and predicting further environmental impacts of the treated effluent. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Activity-Based Profiling of a Physiologic Aglycone Library Reveals Sugar Acceptor Promiscuity of Family 1 UDP-Glucosyltransferases from Grape1[W

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bönisch, Friedericke; Frotscher, Johanna; Stanitzek, Sarah; Rühl, Ernst; Wüst, Matthias; Bitz, Oliver; Schwab, Wilfried

    2014-01-01

    Monoterpenols serve various biological functions and accumulate in grape (Vitis vinifera), where a major fraction occurs as nonvolatile glycosides. We have screened the grape genome for sequences with similarity to terpene URIDINE DIPHOSPHATE GLYCOSYLTRANSFERASES (UGTs) from Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). A ripening-related expression pattern was shown for three candidates by spatial and temporal expression analyses in five grape cultivars. Transcript accumulation correlated with the production of monoterpenyl β-d-glucosides in grape exocarp during ripening and was low in vegetative tissue. Targeted functional screening of the recombinant UGTs for their biological substrates was performed by activity-based metabolite profiling (ABMP) employing a physiologic library of aglycones built from glycosides isolated from grape. This approach led to the identification of two UDP-glucose:monoterpenol β-d-glucosyltransferases. Whereas VvGT14a glucosylated geraniol, R,S-citronellol, and nerol with similar efficiency, the three allelic forms VvGT15a, VvGT15b, and VvGT15c preferred geraniol over nerol. Kinetic resolution of R,S-citronellol and R,S-linalool was shown for VvGT15a and VvGT14a, respectively. ABMP revealed geraniol as the major biological substrate but also disclosed that these UGTs may add to the production of further glycoconjugates in planta. ABMP of aglycone libraries provides a versatile tool to uncover novel biologically relevant substrates of small-molecule glycosyltransferases that often show broad sugar acceptor promiscuity. PMID:25073706

  10. Site-directed mutagenesis under the direction of in silico protein docking modeling reveals the active site residues of 3-ketosteroid-Δ1-dehydrogenase from Mycobacterium neoaurum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Ning; Shen, Yanbing; Yang, Xu; Su, Liqiu; Tang, Rui; Li, Wei; Wang, Min

    2017-07-01

    3-Ketosteroid-Δ 1 -dehydrogenases (KsdD) from Mycobacterium neoaurum could transform androst-4-ene-3,17-dione (AD) to androst-1,4-diene-3,17-dione. This reaction has a significant effect on the product of pharmaceutical steroid. The crystal structure and active site residues information of KsdD from Mycobacterium is not yet available, which result in the engineering of KsdD is tedious. In this study, by the way of protein modeling and site-directed mutagenesis, we find that, Y122, Y125, S138, E140 and Y541 from the FAD-binding domain and Y365 from the catalytic domain play a key role in this transformation. Compared with the wild type, the decline in AD conversion for mutants illustrated that Y125, Y365, and Y541 were essential to the function of KsdD. Y122, S138 and E140 contributed to the catalysis of KsdD. The following analysis revealed the catalysis mechanism of these mutations in KsdD of Mycobacterium. These information presented here facilitate the manipulation of the catalytic properties of the enzyme to improve its application in the pharmaceutical steroid industry.

  11. Alterations in task-induced activity and resting-state fluctuations in visual and DMN areas revealed in long-term meditators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berkovich-Ohana, Aviva; Harel, Michal; Hahamy, Avital; Arieli, Amos; Malach, Rafael

    2016-07-15

    Recently we proposed that the information contained in spontaneously emerging (resting-state) fluctuations may reflect individually unique neuro-cognitive traits. One prediction of this conjecture, termed the "spontaneous trait reactivation" (STR) hypothesis, is that resting-state activity patterns could be diagnostic of unique personalities, talents and life-styles of individuals. Long-term meditators could provide a unique experimental group to test this hypothesis. Using fMRI we found that, during resting-state, the amplitude of spontaneous fluctuations in long-term mindfulness meditation (MM) practitioners was enhanced in the visual cortex and significantly reduced in the DMN compared to naïve controls. Importantly, during a visual recognition memory task, the MM group showed heightened visual cortex responsivity, concomitant with weaker negative responses in Default Mode Network (DMN) areas. This effect was also reflected in the behavioral performance, where MM practitioners performed significantly faster than the control group. Thus, our results uncover opposite changes in the visual and default mode systems in long-term meditators which are revealed during both rest and task. The results support the STR hypothesis and extend it to the domain of local changes in the magnitude of the spontaneous fluctuations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Growth hormone receptor-deficient pigs resemble the pathophysiology of human Laron syndrome and reveal altered activation of signaling cascades in the liver.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinrichs, Arne; Kessler, Barbara; Kurome, Mayuko; Blutke, Andreas; Kemter, Elisabeth; Bernau, Maren; Scholz, Armin M; Rathkolb, Birgit; Renner, Simone; Bultmann, Sebastian; Leonhardt, Heinrich; de Angelis, Martin Hrabĕ; Nagashima, Hiroshi; Hoeflich, Andreas; Blum, Werner F; Bidlingmaier, Martin; Wanke, Rüdiger; Dahlhoff, Maik; Wolf, Eckhard

    2018-05-01

    Laron syndrome (LS) is a rare, autosomal recessive disorder in humans caused by loss-of-function mutations of the growth hormone receptor (GHR) gene. To establish a large animal model for LS, pigs with GHR knockout (KO) mutations were generated and characterized. CRISPR/Cas9 technology was applied to mutate exon 3 of the GHR gene in porcine zygotes. Two heterozygous founder sows with a 1-bp or 7-bp insertion in GHR exon 3 were obtained, and their heterozygous F1 offspring were intercrossed to produce GHR-KO, heterozygous GHR mutant, and wild-type pigs. Since the latter two groups were not significantly different in any parameter investigated, they were pooled as the GHR expressing control group. The characterization program included body and organ growth, body composition, endocrine and clinical-chemical parameters, as well as signaling studies in liver tissue. GHR-KO pigs lacked GHR and had markedly reduced serum insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) levels and reduced IGF-binding protein 3 (IGFBP3) activity but increased IGFBP2 levels. Serum GH concentrations were significantly elevated compared with control pigs. GHR-KO pigs had a normal birth weight. Growth retardation became significant at the age of five weeks. At the age of six months, the body weight of GHR-KO pigs was reduced by 60% compared with controls. Most organ weights of GHR-KO pigs were reduced proportionally to body weight. However, the weights of liver, kidneys, and heart were disproportionately reduced, while the relative brain weight was almost doubled. GHR-KO pigs had a markedly increased percentage of total body fat relative to body weight and displayed transient juvenile hypoglycemia along with decreased serum triglyceride and cholesterol levels. Analysis of insulin receptor related signaling in the liver of adult fasted pigs revealed increased phosphorylation of IRS1 and PI3K. In agreement with the loss of GHR, phosphorylation of STAT5 was significantly reduced. In contrast, phosphorylation

  13. Geolocation Reveals Year-Round at-Sea Distribution and Activity of a Superabundant Tropical Seabird, the Sooty Tern Onychoprion fuscatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Audrey Jaeger

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Migration is a fundamental aspect of the ecology and evolutionary history of many animals, driven by seasonal changes in resource availability and habitat structure. Seabird migration has been investigated extensively in highly seasonal temperate and polar environments. By contrast, the relationships between migration and seasonal environmental changes have rarely been studied in tropical marine habitats. The sooty tern Onychoprion fuscatus is the most abundant tropical seabirds, and has been ranked as the most important tropical species in terms of its annual estimated consumption of marine resources. We used global location sensing (GLS loggers to describe for the first time the year-round at-sea distribution and activity patterns of sooty terns from a large breeding colony in the western Indian Ocean (Bird Island, Seychelles. While breeding, they foraged within 1,074 ± 274 km of the colony. After breeding, birds undertook an extensive post-breeding migration throughout the Indian Ocean; average distances traveled exceeded 50,000 km per individual. Sooty terns used mainly four distinct core oceanic areas during the non-breeding period; in the Bay of Bengal (A, northeast to an area straddling the Chagos-Laccadive plateau (B, southeast to an area on each side of the 90 East Ridge (C and southwest to an area around Comoros (D. Individuals exhibited a high degree of fidelity to these core areas in successive years. We also established that they performed an unusual behavior for a non-Procellariiformes seabird; most individuals undertook a 1-month pre-laying exodus, during which they foraged in a specific area c. 2,000 km to the south-east of the colony. Year-round at-sea activity of sooty terns revealed that they spent only 3.72% of their time in contact with seawater, so indicating that they must sleep in flight. Activity parameters exhibited seasonal (breeding vs. non-breeding periods and daily variations; they notably never land on the water

  14. Growth hormone receptor-deficient pigs resemble the pathophysiology of human Laron syndrome and reveal altered activation of signaling cascades in the liver

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arne Hinrichs

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Objective: Laron syndrome (LS is a rare, autosomal recessive disorder in humans caused by loss-of-function mutations of the growth hormone receptor (GHR gene. To establish a large animal model for LS, pigs with GHR knockout (KO mutations were generated and characterized. Methods: CRISPR/Cas9 technology was applied to mutate exon 3 of the GHR gene in porcine zygotes. Two heterozygous founder sows with a 1-bp or 7-bp insertion in GHR exon 3 were obtained, and their heterozygous F1 offspring were intercrossed to produce GHR-KO, heterozygous GHR mutant, and wild-type pigs. Since the latter two groups were not significantly different in any parameter investigated, they were pooled as the GHR expressing control group. The characterization program included body and organ growth, body composition, endocrine and clinical-chemical parameters, as well as signaling studies in liver tissue. Results: GHR-KO pigs lacked GHR and had markedly reduced serum insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1 levels and reduced IGF-binding protein 3 (IGFBP3 activity but increased IGFBP2 levels. Serum GH concentrations were significantly elevated compared with control pigs. GHR-KO pigs had a normal birth weight. Growth retardation became significant at the age of five weeks. At the age of six months, the body weight of GHR-KO pigs was reduced by 60% compared with controls. Most organ weights of GHR-KO pigs were reduced proportionally to body weight. However, the weights of liver, kidneys, and heart were disproportionately reduced, while the relative brain weight was almost doubled. GHR-KO pigs had a markedly increased percentage of total body fat relative to body weight and displayed transient juvenile hypoglycemia along with decreased serum triglyceride and cholesterol levels. Analysis of insulin receptor related signaling in the liver of adult fasted pigs revealed increased phosphorylation of IRS1 and PI3K. In agreement with the loss of GHR, phosphorylation of STAT5 was

  15. Area-specific modulation of neural activation comparing escitalopram and citalopram revealed by pharmaco-fMRI: a randomized cross-over study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Windischberger, Christian; Lanzenberger, Rupert; Holik, Alexander; Spindelegger, Christoph; Stein, Patrycja; Moser, Ulrike; Gerstl, Florian; Fink, Martin; Moser, Ewald; Kasper, Siegfried

    2010-01-15

    Area-specific and stimulation-dependent changes of human brain activation by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) are an important issue for improved understanding of treatment mechanisms, given the frequent prescription of these drugs in depression and anxiety disorders. The aim of this neuroimaging study was to investigate differences in BOLD-signal caused by administration of the SSRIs escitalopram and citalopram using pharmacological functional magnetic resonance imaging (pharmaco-fMRI). Eighteen healthy subjects participated in a placebo-controlled, randomized, double-blind study in cross-over repeated measures design. Each volunteer performed facial emotional discrimination and a sensorimotor control paradigm during three scanning sessions. Citalopram (20 mg/d), escitalopram (10 mg/d) and placebo were administered for 10 days each with a drug-free period of at least 21 days. Significant pharmacological effects on BOLD-signal were found in the amygdala, medial frontal gyrus, parahippocampal, fusiform and middle temporal gyri. Post-hoc t-tests revealed decreased BOLD-signal in the right amygdala and left parahippocampal gyrus in both pharmacological conditions, compared to placebo. Escitalopram, compared to citalopram, induced a decrease of BOLD-signal in the medial frontal gyrus and an increase in the right fusiform and left parahippocampal gyri. Drug effects were concentrated in brain regions with dense serotonergic projections. Both escitalopram and citalopram attenuated BOLD-signal in the amygdala and parahippocampal cortex to emotionally significant stimuli compared to control stimuli. We believe that reduced reactivity in the medial frontal gyrus found for escitalopram compared to citalopram administration might explain the response differences between study drugs as demonstrated in previous clinical trials.

  16. Phylogenetic investigation of a statewide HIV-1 epidemic reveals ongoing and active transmission networks among men who have sex with men

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Philip A.; Hogan, Joseph W.; Huang, Austin; DeLong, Allison; Salemi, Marco; Mayer, Kenneth H.; Kantor, Rami

    2015-01-01

    Background Molecular epidemiologic evaluation of HIV-1 transmission networks can elucidate behavioral components of transmission that can be targets for intervention. Methods We combined phylogenetic and statistical approaches using pol sequences from patients diagnosed 2004-2011 at a large HIV center in Rhode Island, following 75% of the state’s HIV population. Phylogenetic trees were constructed using maximum likelihood and putative transmission clusters were evaluated using latent class analyses (LCA) to determine association of cluster size with underlying demographic/behavioral characteristics. A logistic growth model was used to assess intra-cluster dynamics over time and predict “active” clusters that were more likely to harbor undiagnosed infections. Results Of 1,166 HIV-1 subtype B sequences, 31% were distributed among 114 statistically-supported, monophyletic clusters (range: 2-15 sequences/cluster). Sequences from men who have sex with men (MSM) formed 52% of clusters. LCA demonstrated that sequences from recently diagnosed (2008-2011) MSM with primary HIV infection (PHI) and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) were more likely to form larger clusters (Odds Ratio 1.62-11.25, ppornographic stores. Four large clusters with 38 sequences (100% male, 89% MSM) had a high-probability of harboring undiagnosed infections and included younger MSM with PHI and STIs. Conclusions In this first large-scale molecular epidemiologic investigation of HIV-1 transmission in New England, sexual networks among recently diagnosed MSM with PHI and concomitant STIs contributed to ongoing transmission. Characterization of transmission dynamics revealed actively growing clusters which may be targets for intervention. PMID:26258569

  17. Transcriptional Activities of the Microbial Consortium Living with the Marine Nitrogen-Fixing Cyanobacterium Trichodesmium Reveal Potential Roles in Community-Level Nitrogen Cycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Michael D; Webb, Eric A; Walworth, Nathan G; Fu, Fei-Xue; Held, Noelle A; Saito, Mak A; Hutchins, David A

    2018-01-01

    Trichodesmium is a globally distributed cyanobacterium whose nitrogen-fixing capability fuels primary production in warm oligotrophic oceans. Like many photoautotrophs, Trichodesmium serves as a host to various other microorganisms, yet little is known about how this associated community modulates fluxes of environmentally relevant chemical species into and out of the supraorganismal structure. Here, we utilized metatranscriptomics to examine gene expression activities of microbial communities associated with Trichodesmium erythraeum (strain IMS101) using laboratory-maintained enrichment cultures that have previously been shown to harbor microbial communities similar to those of natural populations. In enrichments maintained under two distinct CO 2 concentrations for ∼8 years, the community transcriptional profiles were found to be specific to the treatment, demonstrating a restructuring of overall gene expression had occurred. Some of this restructuring involved significant increases in community respiration-related transcripts under elevated CO 2 , potentially facilitating the corresponding measured increases in host nitrogen fixation rates. Particularly of note, in both treatments, community transcripts involved in the reduction of nitrate, nitrite, and nitrous oxide were detected, suggesting the associated organisms may play a role in colony-level nitrogen cycling. Lastly, a taxon-specific analysis revealed distinct ecological niches of consistently cooccurring major taxa that may enable, or even encourage, the stable cohabitation of a diverse community within Trichodesmium consortia. IMPORTANCE Trichodesmium is a genus of globally distributed, nitrogen-fixing marine cyanobacteria. As a source of new nitrogen in otherwise nitrogen-deficient systems, these organisms help fuel carbon fixation carried out by other more abundant photoautotrophs and thereby have significant roles in global nitrogen and carbon cycling. Members of the Trichodesmium genus tend to

  18. Airway epithelial cell exposure to distinct e-cigarette liquid flavorings reveals toxicity thresholds and activation of CFTR by the chocolate flavoring 2,5-dimethypyrazine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherwood, Cara L; Boitano, Scott

    2016-05-17

    The potential for adverse respiratory effects following exposure to electronic (e-) cigarette liquid (e-liquid) flavorings remains largely unexplored. Given the multitude of flavor permutations on the market, identification of those flavor constituents that negatively impact the respiratory tract is a daunting task. In this study we examined the impact of common e-liquid flavoring chemicals on the airway epithelium, the cellular monolayer that provides the first line of defense against inhaled particulates, pathogens, and toxicants. We used the xCELLigence real-time cell analyzer (RTCA) as a primary high-capacity screening tool to assess cytotoxicity thresholds and physiological effects of common e-liquid flavoring chemicals on immortalized human bronchial epithelial cells (16HBE14o-). The RTCA was used secondarily to assess the capability of 16HBE14o- cells to respond to cellular signaling agonists following a 24 h exposure to select flavoring chemicals. Finally, we conducted biophysical measurements of well-differentiated primary mouse tracheal epithelial (MTE) cells with an Ussing chamber to measure the effects of e-cigarette flavoring constituents on barrier function and ion conductance. In our high-capacity screens five of the seven flavoring chemicals displayed changes in cellular impedance consistent with cell death at concentrations found in e-liquid. Vanillin and the chocolate flavoring 2,5-dimethylpyrazine caused alterations in cellular physiology indicative of a cellular signaling event. At subcytotoxic levels, 24 h exposure to 2,5-dimethylpyrazine compromised the ability of airway epithelial cells to respond to signaling agonists important in salt and water balance at the airway surface. Biophysical measurements of 2,5-dimethylpyrazine on primary MTE cells revealed alterations in ion conductance consistent with an efflux at the apical airway surface that was accompanied by a transient loss in transepithelial resistance. Mechanistic studies confirmed

  19. In vivo approaches reveal a key role for DCs in CD4+ T cell activation and parasite clearance during the acute phase of experimental blood-stage malaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrique Borges da Silva

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Dendritic cells (DCs are phagocytes that are highly specialized for antigen presentation. Heterogeneous populations of macrophages and DCs form a phagocyte network inside the red pulp (RP of the spleen, which is a major site for the control of blood-borne infections such as malaria. However, the dynamics of splenic DCs during Plasmodium infections are poorly understood, limiting our knowledge regarding their protective role in malaria. Here, we used in vivo experimental approaches that enabled us to deplete or visualize DCs in order to clarify these issues. To elucidate the roles of DCs and marginal zone macrophages in the protection against blood-stage malaria, we infected DTx (diphtheria toxin-treated C57BL/6.CD11c-DTR mice, as well as C57BL/6 mice treated with low doses of clodronate liposomes (ClLip, with Plasmodium chabaudi AS (Pc parasites. The first evidence suggesting that DCs could contribute directly to parasite clearance was an early effect of the DTx treatment, but not of the ClLip treatment, in parasitemia control. DCs were also required for CD4+ T cell responses during infection. The phagocytosis of infected red blood cells (iRBCs by splenic DCs was analyzed by confocal intravital microscopy, as well as by flow cytometry and immunofluorescence, at three distinct phases of Pc malaria: at the first encounter, at pre-crisis concomitant with parasitemia growth and at crisis when the parasitemia decline coincides with spleen closure. In vivo and ex vivo imaging of the spleen revealed that DCs actively phagocytize iRBCs and interact with CD4+ T cells both in T cell-rich areas and in the RP. Subcapsular RP DCs were highly efficient in the recognition and capture of iRBCs during pre-crisis, while complete DC maturation was only achieved during crisis. These findings indicate that, beyond their classical role in antigen presentation, DCs also contribute to the direct elimination of iRBCs during acute Plasmodium infection.

  20. In vivo approaches reveal a key role for DCs in CD4+ T cell activation and parasite clearance during the acute phase of experimental blood-stage malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges da Silva, Henrique; Fonseca, Raíssa; Cassado, Alexandra Dos Anjos; Machado de Salles, Érika; de Menezes, Maria Nogueira; Langhorne, Jean; Perez, Katia Regina; Cuccovia, Iolanda Midea; Ryffel, Bernhard; Barreto, Vasco M; Marinho, Cláudio Romero Farias; Boscardin, Silvia Beatriz; Álvarez, José Maria; D'Império-Lima, Maria Regina; Tadokoro, Carlos Eduardo

    2015-02-01

    Dendritic cells (DCs) are phagocytes that are highly specialized for antigen presentation. Heterogeneous populations of macrophages and DCs form a phagocyte network inside the red pulp (RP) of the spleen, which is a major site for the control of blood-borne infections such as malaria. However, the dynamics of splenic DCs during Plasmodium infections are poorly understood, limiting our knowledge regarding their protective role in malaria. Here, we used in vivo experimental approaches that enabled us to deplete or visualize DCs in order to clarify these issues. To elucidate the roles of DCs and marginal zone macrophages in the protection against blood-stage malaria, we infected DTx (diphtheria toxin)-treated C57BL/6.CD11c-DTR mice, as well as C57BL/6 mice treated with low doses of clodronate liposomes (ClLip), with Plasmodium chabaudi AS (Pc) parasites. The first evidence suggesting that DCs could contribute directly to parasite clearance was an early effect of the DTx treatment, but not of the ClLip treatment, in parasitemia control. DCs were also required for CD4+ T cell responses during infection. The phagocytosis of infected red blood cells (iRBCs) by splenic DCs was analyzed by confocal intravital microscopy, as well as by flow cytometry and immunofluorescence, at three distinct phases of Pc malaria: at the first encounter, at pre-crisis concomitant with parasitemia growth and at crisis when the parasitemia decline coincides with spleen closure. In vivo and ex vivo imaging of the spleen revealed that DCs actively phagocytize iRBCs and interact with CD4+ T cells both in T cell-rich areas and in the RP. Subcapsular RP DCs were highly efficient in the recognition and capture of iRBCs during pre-crisis, while complete DC maturation was only achieved during crisis. These findings indicate that, beyond their classical role in antigen presentation, DCs also contribute to the direct elimination of iRBCs during acute Plasmodium infection.

  1. Concurrent tACS-fMRI Reveals Causal Influence of Power Synchronized Neural Activity on Resting State fMRI Connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bächinger, Marc; Zerbi, Valerio; Moisa, Marius; Polania, Rafael; Liu, Quanying; Mantini, Dante; Ruff, Christian; Wenderoth, Nicole

    2017-05-03

    Resting state fMRI (rs-fMRI) is commonly used to study the brain's intrinsic neural coupling, which reveals specific spatiotemporal patterns in the form of resting state networks (RSNs). It has been hypothesized that slow rs-fMRI oscillations (5 Hz); however, causal evidence for this relationship is currently lacking. Here we measured rs-fMRI in humans while applying transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) to entrain brain rhythms in left and right sensorimotor cortices. The two driving tACS signals were tailored to the individual's α rhythm (8-12 Hz) and fluctuated in amplitude according to a 1 Hz power envelope. We entrained the left versus right hemisphere in accordance to two different coupling modes where either α oscillations were synchronized between hemispheres (phase-synchronized tACS) or the slower oscillating power envelopes (power-synchronized tACS). Power-synchronized tACS significantly increased rs-fMRI connectivity within the stimulated RSN compared with phase-synchronized or no tACS. This effect outlasted the stimulation period and tended to be more effective in individuals who exhibited a naturally weak interhemispheric coupling. Using this novel approach, our data provide causal evidence that synchronized power fluctuations contribute to the formation of fMRI-based RSNs. Moreover, our findings demonstrate that the brain's intrinsic coupling at rest can be selectively modulated by choosing appropriate tACS signals, which could lead to new interventions for patients with altered rs-fMRI connectivity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Resting state fMRI (rs-fMRI) has become an important tool to estimate brain connectivity. However, relatively little is known about how slow hemodynamic oscillations measured with fMRI relate to electrophysiological processes. It was suggested that slowly fluctuating power envelopes of electrophysiological signals synchronize across brain areas and that the topography of this activity is spatially correlated to

  2. Meeting the Challenge: Evoking Some Hope; From Personal Advocacy to Public Activism; Seeing Yourself Sitting There; Letting Kids' Gifts Shine Through; Revealing the Secrets of the Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherman, Lee; Lewis, Bryan; Ramsey, Betsy; Tibbetts, Daniel; Kaplan, Kay; Berninger, Virginia

    2003-01-01

    Interviews with a learning disabled student, parent activist, teacher, tutor, and researcher reveal that learning disabilities are neurologically caused, not the result of low motivation or dysfunctional families. A variety of educational practices are explained that accommodate different learning styles of children with learning disabilities. It…

  3. Continuous, high-resolution biospeckle imaging reveals a discrete zone of activity at the root apex that responds to contact with obstacles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, K M; Barreto, B; Pasqual, M; White, P J; Braga, R A; Dupuy, L X

    2014-02-01

    Shining a laser onto biological material produces light speckles termed biospeckles. Patterns of biospeckle activity reflect changes in cell biochemistry, developmental processes and responses to the environment. The aim of this work was to develop methods to investigate the biospeckle activity in roots and to characterize the distribution of its intensity and response to thigmostimuli. Biospeckle activity in roots of Zea mays, and also Jatropha curcas and Citrus limonia, was imaged live and in situ using a portable laser and a digital microscope with a spatial resolution of 10 μm per pixel and the ability to capture images every 0.080 s. A procedure incorporating a Fujii algorithm, image restoration using median and Gaussian filters, image segmentation using maximum-entropy threshold methods and the extraction of features using a tracing algorithm followed by spline fitting were developed to obtain quantitative information from images of biospeckle activity. A wavelet transform algorithm was used for spectral decomposition of biospeckle activity and generalized additive models were used to attribute statistical significance to changes in patterns of biospeckle activity. The intensity of biospeckle activity was greatest close to the root apex. Higher frequencies (3-6 Hz) contributed most to the total intensity of biospeckle activity. When a root encountered an obstacle, the intensity of biospeckle activity decreased abruptly throughout the root system. The response became attenuated with repeated thigmostimuli. The data suggest that at least one component of root biospeckle activity resulted from a biological process, which is located in the zone of cell division and responds to thigmostimuli. However, neither individual cell division events nor root elongation is likely to be responsible for the patterns of biospeckle activity.

  4. Removing the effect of response time on brain activity reveals developmental differences in conflict processing in the posterior medial prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carp, Joshua; Fitzgerald, Kate Dimond; Taylor, Stephan F; Weissman, Daniel H

    2012-01-02

    In functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies, researchers often attempt to ensure that group differences in brain activity are not confounded with group differences in mean reaction time (RT). However, even when groups are matched for performance, they may differ in terms of the RT-BOLD relationship: the degree to which brain activity varies with RT on a trial-by-trial basis. Group activation differences might therefore be influenced by group differences in the relationship between brain activity and time on task. Here, we investigated whether correcting for this potential confound alters group differences in brain activity. Specifically, we reanalyzed data from a functional MRI study of response conflict in children and adults, in which conventional analyses indicated that conflict-related activity did not differ between groups. We found that the RT-BOLD relationship was weaker in children than in adults. Consequently, after removing the effect of RT on brain activity, children exhibited greater conflict-related activity than adults in both the posterior medial prefrontal cortex and the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. These results identify the RT-BOLD relationship as an important potential confound in fMRI studies of group differences. They also suggest that the magnitude of the RT-BOLD relationship may be a useful biomarker of brain maturity. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Antiviral activity of Small interfering RNAs: Specificity testing using heterologous virus reveals interferon-related effects overlooked by conventional mismatch controls

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schyth, Brian Dall; Lorenzen, Niels; Pedersen, Finn Skou

    2006-01-01

    to the viral glycoprotein gene of the target-virus efficiently inhibited viral multiplication in infected cell cultures, while two of three corresponding mismatched siRNAs did not have this effect. This suggested specific interference, but similar results were obtained when the same siRNAs were tested against...... a heterologous virus. Further analyses revealed that the siRNAs induced a non-target-specific anti-viral effect correlating with upregulation of the interferon induced Mx gene....

  6. A Chinese Herbal Decoction, Danggui Buxue Tang, Stimulates Proliferation, Differentiation and Gene Expression of Cultured Osteosarcoma Cells: Genomic Approach to Reveal Specific Gene Activation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roy C. Y. Choi

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Danggui Buxue Tang (DBT, a Chinese herbal decoction used to treat ailments in women, contains Radix Astragali (Huangqi; RA and Radix Angelicae Sinensis (Danggui; RAS. When DBT was applied onto cultured MG-63 cells, an increase of cell proliferation and differentiation of MG-63 cell were revealed: both of these effects were significantly higher in DBT than RA or RAS extract. To search for the biological markers that are specifically regulated by DBT, DNA microarray was used to reveal the gene expression profiling of DBT in MG-63 cells as compared to that of RA- or RAS-treated cells. Amongst 883 DBT-regulated genes, 403 of them are specifically regulated by DBT treatment, including CCL-2, CCL-7, CCL-8, and galectin-9. The signaling cascade of this DBT-regulated gene expression was also elucidated in cultured MG-63 cells. The current results reveal the potential usage of this herbal decoction in treating osteoporosis and suggest the uniqueness of Chinese herbal decoction that requires a well-defined formulation. The DBT-regulated genes in the culture could serve as biological responsive markers for quality assurance of the herbal preparation.

  7. Long-Term Monitoring of Physical Behavior Reveals Different Cardiac Responses to Physical Activity among Subjects with and without Chronic Neck Pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M. Hallman

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. We determined the extent to which heart rate variability (HRV responses to daily physical activity differ between subjects with and without chronic neck pain. Method. Twenty-nine subjects (13 women with chronic neck pain and 27 age- and gender-matched healthy controls participated. Physical activity (accelerometry, HRV (heart rate monitor, and spatial location (Global Positioning System (GPS were recorded for 74 hours. GPS data were combined with a diary to identify periods of work and of leisure at home and elsewhere. Time- and frequency-domain HRV indices were calculated and stratified by period and activity type (lying/sitting, standing, or walking. ANCOVAs with multiple adjustments were used to disclose possible group differences in HRV. Results. The pain group showed a reduced HRV response to physical activity compared with controls (p=.001, according to the sympathetic-baroreceptor HRV index (LF/HF, ratio between low- and high-frequency power, even after adjustment for leisure time physical activity, work stress, sleep quality, mental health, and aerobic capacity (p=.02. The parasympathetic response to physical activity did not differ between groups. Conclusions. Relying on long-term monitoring of physical behavior and heart rate variability, we found an aberrant sympathetic-baroreceptor response to daily physical activity among subjects with chronic neck pain.

  8. Trend of telomerase activity change during human iPSC self-renewal and differentiation revealed by a quartz crystal microbalance based assay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Yitian; Zhou, Ping; Xin, Yinqiang; Wang, Jie; Zhu, Zhiqiang; Hu, Ji; Wei, Shicheng; Ma, Hongwei

    2014-11-01

    Telomerase plays an important role in governing the life span of cells for its capacity to extend telomeres. As high activity of telomerase has been found in stem cells and cancer cells specifically, various methods have been developed for the evaluation of telomerase activity. To overcome the time-consuming procedures and complicated manipulations of existing methods, we developed a novel method named Telomeric Repeat Elongation Assay based on Quartz crystal microbalance (TREAQ) to monitor telomerase activity during the self-renewal and differentiation of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). TREAQ results indicated hiPSCs possess invariable telomerase activity for 11 passages on Matrigel and a steady decline of telomerase activity when differentiated for different periods, which is confirmed with existing golden standard method. The pluripotency of hiPSCs during differentiation could be estimated through monitoring telomerase activity and compared with the expression levels of markers of pluripotency gene via quantitative real time PCR. Regular assessment for factors associated with pluripotency or stemness was expensive and requires excessive sample consuming, thus TREAQ could be a promising alternative technology for routine monitoring of telomerase activity and estimate the pluripotency of stem cells.

  9. Long-Term Monitoring of Physical Behavior Reveals Different Cardiac Responses to Physical Activity among Subjects with and without Chronic Neck Pain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallman, David M.; Mathiassen, Svend Erik; Lyskov, Eugene

    2015-01-01

    Background. We determined the extent to which heart rate variability (HRV) responses to daily physical activity differ between subjects with and without chronic neck pain. Method. Twenty-nine subjects (13 women) with chronic neck pain and 27 age- and gender-matched healthy controls participated. Physical activity (accelerometry), HRV (heart rate monitor), and spatial location (Global Positioning System (GPS)) were recorded for 74 hours. GPS data were combined with a diary to identify periods of work and of leisure at home and elsewhere. Time- and frequency-domain HRV indices were calculated and stratified by period and activity type (lying/sitting, standing, or walking). ANCOVAs with multiple adjustments were used to disclose possible group differences in HRV. Results. The pain group showed a reduced HRV response to physical activity compared with controls (p = .001), according to the sympathetic-baroreceptor HRV index (LF/HF, ratio between low- and high-frequency power), even after adjustment for leisure time physical activity, work stress, sleep quality, mental health, and aerobic capacity (p = .02). The parasympathetic response to physical activity did not differ between groups. Conclusions. Relying on long-term monitoring of physical behavior and heart rate variability, we found an aberrant sympathetic-baroreceptor response to daily physical activity among subjects with chronic neck pain. PMID:26557711

  10. Weak activity of haloalkane dehalogenase LinB with 1,2,3-trichloropropane revealed by X-Ray crystallography and microcalorimetry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monincová, Marta; Prokop, Zbynek; Vévodová, Jitka; Nagata, Yuji; Damborsky, Jirí

    2007-03-01

    1,2,3-Trichloropropane (TCP) is a highly toxic and recalcitrant compound. Haloalkane dehalogenases are bacterial enzymes that catalyze the cleavage of a carbon-halogen bond in a wide range of organic halogenated compounds. Haloalkane dehalogenase LinB from Sphingobium japonicum UT26 has, for a long time, been considered inactive with TCP, since the reaction cannot be easily detected by conventional analytical methods. Here we demonstrate detection of the weak activity (k(cat) = 0.005 s(-1)) of LinB with TCP using X-ray crystallography and microcalorimetry. This observation makes LinB a useful starting material for the development of a new biocatalyst toward TCP by protein engineering. Microcalorimetry is proposed to be a universal method for the detection of weak enzymatic activities. Detection of these activities is becoming increasingly important for engineering novel biocatalysts using the scaffolds of proteins with promiscuous activities.

  11. Weak Activity of Haloalkane Dehalogenase LinB with 1,2,3-Trichloropropane Revealed by X-Ray Crystallography and Microcalorimetry▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monincová, Marta; Prokop, Zbyněk; Vévodová, Jitka; Nagata, Yuji; Damborský, Jiří

    2007-01-01

    1,2,3-Trichloropropane (TCP) is a highly toxic and recalcitrant compound. Haloalkane dehalogenases are bacterial enzymes that catalyze the cleavage of a carbon-halogen bond in a wide range of organic halogenated compounds. Haloalkane dehalogenase LinB from Sphingobium japonicum UT26 has, for a long time, been considered inactive with TCP, since the reaction cannot be easily detected by conventional analytical methods. Here we demonstrate detection of the weak activity (kcat = 0.005 s−1) of LinB with TCP using X-ray crystallography and microcalorimetry. This observation makes LinB a useful starting material for the development of a new biocatalyst toward TCP by protein engineering. Microcalorimetry is proposed to be a universal method for the detection of weak enzymatic activities. Detection of these activities is becoming increasingly important for engineering novel biocatalysts using the scaffolds of proteins with promiscuous activities. PMID:17259360

  12. The origins of enhanced activity in factor VIIa analogs and the interplay between key allosteric sites revealed by hydrogen exchange mass spectrometry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rand, Kasper D; Andersen, Mette D; Olsen, Ole H

    2008-01-01

    Factor VIIa (FVIIa) circulates in the blood in a zymogen-like state. Only upon association with membrane-bound tissue factor (TF) at the site of vascular injury does FVIIa become active and able to initiate blood coagulation. Here we used hydrogen exchange monitored by mass spectrometry to invest......Factor VIIa (FVIIa) circulates in the blood in a zymogen-like state. Only upon association with membrane-bound tissue factor (TF) at the site of vascular injury does FVIIa become active and able to initiate blood coagulation. Here we used hydrogen exchange monitored by mass spectrometry...... to investigate the conformational effects of site-directed mutagenesis at key positions in FVIIa and the origins of enhanced intrinsic activity of FVIIa analogs. The differences in hydrogen exchange of two highly active variants, FVIIa(DVQ) and FVIIa(VEAY), imply that enhanced catalytic efficiency was attained...

  13. Release of Halide Ions from the Buried Active Site of the Haloalkane Dehalogenase LinB Revealed by Stopped-Flow Fluorescence Analysis and Free Energy Calculations

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hladílková, Jana; Prokop, Z.; Chaloupková, R.; Damborský, J.; Jungwirth, Pavel

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 117, č. 46 (2013), s. 14329-14335 ISSN 1520-6106 R&D Projects: GA ČR GBP208/12/G016 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GAP207/12/0775 Program:GA Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : access tunnel * buried active site * catalytic activity * enzyme mechanism * haloalkane dehalogenase * halide ions Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry Impact factor: 3.377, year: 2013

  14. IL-6/IL-12 Cytokine Receptor Shuffling of Extra- and Intracellular Domains Reveals Canonical STAT Activation via Synthetic IL-35 and IL-39 Signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floss, D M; Schönberg, M; Franke, M; Horstmeier, F C; Engelowski, E; Schneider, A; Rosenfeldt, E M; Scheller, J

    2017-11-09

    IL-35 and IL-39 are recently discovered shared members of the IL-6- and IL-12-type cytokine family with immune-suppressive capacity. IL-35 has been reported to induce the formation of four different receptor complexes: gp130:IL-12β2, gp130:gp130, IL-12β2:IL-12β2, and IL-12β2:WSX-1. IL-39 was proposed to form a gp130:IL-23R receptor complex. IL-35, but not IL-39, has been reported to activate non-conventional STAT signaling, depending on the receptor complex and target cell. Analyses of IL-35 and IL-39 are, however, hampered by the lack of biologically active recombinant IL-35 and IL-39 proteins. Therefore, we engineered chimeric cytokine receptors to accomplish synthetic IL-35 and IL- 39 signaling by shuffling the extra- and intracellular domains of IL-6/IL-12-type cytokine receptors, resulting in biological activity for all previously described IL-35 receptor complexes. Moreover, we found that the proposed IL-39 receptor complex is biologically active and discovered two additional biologically active synthetic receptor combinations, gp130/IL-12Rβ1 and IL-23R/IL-12Rβ2. Surprisingly, synthetic IL-35 activation led to more canonical STAT signaling of all receptor complexes. In summary, our receptor shuffling approach highlights an interchangeable, modular domain structure among IL-6- and IL-12-type cytokine receptors and enabled synthetic IL-35 and IL-39 signaling.

  15. The structure of a novel thermophilic esterase from the Planctomycetes species, Thermogutta terrifontis reveals an open active site due to a minimal ‘cap’ domain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer Ann Littlechild

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available A carboxyl esterase (TtEst2 has been identified in a novel thermophilic bacterium, Thermogutta terrifontis from the phylum Planctomycetes and has been cloned and over-expressed in Escherichia coli. The enzyme has been characterised biochemically and shown to have activity towards small p-nitrophenyl (pNP carboxylic esters with optimal activity for pNP-acetate. The enzyme shows moderate thermostability retaining 75% activity after incubation for 30 minutes at 70°C. The crystal structures have been determined for the native TtEst2 and its complexes with the carboxylic acid products propionate, butyrate and valerate. TtEst2 differs from most enzymes of the α/β-hydrolase family 3 as it lacks the majority of the ‘cap’ domain and its active site cavity is exposed to the solvent. The bound ligands have allowed the identification of the carboxyl pocket in the enzyme active site. Comparison of TtEst2 with structurally related enzymes has given insight into how differences in their substrate preference can be rationalised based upon the properties of their active site pockets.

  16. The bat-bird-bug battle: daily flight activity of insects and their predators over a rice field revealed by high-resolution Scheimpflug Lidar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malmqvist, Elin; Jansson, Samuel; Zhu, Shiming; Li, Wansha; Svanberg, Katarina; Svanberg, Sune; Rydell, Jens; Song, Ziwei; Bood, Joakim; Brydegaard, Mikkel; Åkesson, Susanne

    2018-04-01

    We present the results of, to our knowledge, the first Lidar study applied to continuous and simultaneous monitoring of aerial insects, bats and birds. It illustrates how common patterns of flight activity, e.g. insect swarming around twilight, depend on predation risk and other constraints acting on the faunal components. Flight activity was monitored over a rice field in China during one week in July 2016, using a high-resolution Scheimpflug Lidar system. The monitored Lidar transect was about 520 m long and covered approximately 2.5 m3. The observed biomass spectrum was bimodal, and targets were separated into insects and vertebrates in a categorization supported by visual observations. Peak flight activity occurred at dusk and dawn, with a 37 min time difference between the bat and insect peaks. Hence, bats started to feed in declining insect activity after dusk and stopped before the rise in activity before dawn. A similar time difference between insects and birds may have occurred, but it was not obvious, perhaps because birds were relatively scarce. Our observations are consistent with the hypothesis that flight activity of bats is constrained by predation in bright light, and that crepuscular insects exploit this constraint by swarming near to sunset/sunrise to minimize predation from bats.

  17. Molecular profiling of ALDH1+ colorectal cancer stem cells reveals preferential activation of MAPK, FAK, and oxidative stress prosurvival signalling pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vishnubalaji, Radhakrishnan; Manikandan, Muthurangan; Fahad, Mohamed

    2018-01-01

    enrichment related to DNA damage, MAPK, FAK, oxidative stress response, and Wnt signalling. ALDH+ cells showed enhanced ROS stress resistance, whereas MAPK/FAK pathway pharmacologic inhibition limited their survival. Conversely, 5-fluorouracil increased the ALDH+ cell fraction among the SW403, HCT116 and SW.......006) and poor DFS (p = 0.05), thus implicating ALDH1A1 and POU5F1 in CRC prognosis. Our data reveal distinct molecular signature of ALDH+ CSCs in CRC and suggest pathways relevant for successful targeted therapies and management of CRC....

  18. Shared active site architecture between archaeal PolD and multi-subunit RNA polymerases revealed by X-ray crystallography

    OpenAIRE

    Sauguet , Ludovic; Raia , Pierre; Henneke , Ghislaine; Delarue , Marc

    2016-01-01

    International audience; Archaeal replicative DNA polymerase D (PolD) constitute an atypical class of DNA polymerases made of a proofreading exonuclease subunit (DP1) and a larger polymerase catalytic subunit (DP2), both with unknown structures. We have determined the crystal structures of Pyrococcus abyssi DP1 and DP2 at 2.5 and 2.2 Å resolution, respectively, revealing a catalytic core strikingly different from all other known DNA polymerases (DNAPs). Rather, the PolD DP2 catalytic core has ...

  19. Circadian profiling reveals higher histamine plasma levels and lower diamine oxidase serum activities in 24% of patients with suspected histamine intolerance compared to food allergy and controls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinzer, T C; Tietz, E; Waldmann, E; Schink, M; Neurath, M F; Zopf, Y

    2018-04-01

    Histamine intolerance is thought to trigger manifold clinical symptoms after ingesting histamine-rich food due to reduced activity of diamine oxidase (DAO). No study has hitherto systematically assessed daily fluctuations of histamine levels and DAO activities in symptomatic patients. The aim of the study was to investigate the presence of histamine intolerance, to therefore establish day profiles of histamine levels and DAO activities, and to compare the results between patients with suspected histamine intolerance, food allergy and healthy controls. We determined day profiles of histamine plasma levels and DAO serum activities in 33 patients with suspected histamine intolerance, in 21 patients with proven food allergy and in 10 healthy control patients. Clinical symptoms, food intolerances and further clinical and laboratory chemical parameters were evaluated. Twenty-four percent (8 of 33) suspected histamine-intolerant patients showed elevated histamine levels during the day. That might be caused by constantly and significantly reduced DAO activities in these patients compared to food-allergic and control patients. The remaining 25 patients presented normal histamine levels and DAO activities, but an increased prevalence of multiple food intolerances compared to the other subgroup of suspected histamine-intolerants. There was no correlation between subjective complaints and serological histamine parameters in patients with suspected histamine intolerance. We determined by daily profiling that decreased DAO activities correlated with elevated histamine levels in a subgroup of suspected histamine-intolerants. This finding discriminates these patients from food intolerant individuals with similar clinical symptoms and strongly suggests the presence of histamine intolerance. © 2017 EAACI and John Wiley and Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley and Sons Ltd.

  20. Resting-state fMRI revealed different brain activities responding to valproic acid and levetiracetam in benign epilepsy with central-temporal spikes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Qirui; Zhang, Zhiqiang; Xu, Qiang; Wu, Han; Li, Zhipeng; Lu, Guangming [Nanjing University School of Medicine, Department of Medical Imaging, Jinling Hospital, Nanjing (China); Yang, Fang; Li, Qian [Nanjing University School of Medicine, Department of Neurology, Jinling Hospital, Nanjing (China); Hu, Zheng [Nanjing Children' s Hospital, Department of Neurology, Nanjing (China); Dante, Mantini [Faculty of Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Sciences, KU Leuven (Belgium); Li, Kai [Suzhou University, Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, Suzhou (China)

    2017-05-15

    Our aim was to investigate regional difference in brain activities in response to antiepileptic drug (AED) medications in benign epilepsy with central-temporal spikes (BECTS) using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Fifty-seven patients with BECTS underwent resting-state fMRI scans after receiving either valproic acid (VPA) (n = 15), levetiracetam (LEV) (n = 21), or no medication (n = 21). fMRI regional homogeneity (ReHo) parameter among the three groups of patients were compared and were correlated with total doses of AED in the two medicated groups. Compared with patients on no-medication, patients receiving either VPA or LEV showed decreased ReHo in the central-temporal region, frontal cortex, and thalamus. In particular, the VPA group showed greater ReHo decrease in the thalamus and milder in cortices and caudate heads compared with the LEV group. In addition, the VPA group demonstrated a negative correlation between ReHo values in the central-temporal region and medication dose. Both VPA and LEV inhibit resting-state neural activity in the central-temporal region, which is the main epileptogenic focus of BECTS. VPA reduced brain activity in the cortical epileptogenic regions and thalamus evenly, whereas LEV reduced brain activity predominantly in the cortices. Interestingly, VPA showed a cumulative effect on inhibiting brain activity in the epileptogenic regions in BECTS. (orig.)

  1. Prediction of extracellular proteases of the human pathogen Helicobacter pylori reveals proteolytic activity of the Hp1018/19 protein HtrA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Löwer

    Full Text Available Exported proteases of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori are potentially involved in pathogen-associated disorders leading to gastric inflammation and neoplasia. By comprehensive sequence screening of the H. pylori proteome for predicted secreted proteases, we retrieved several candidate genes. We detected caseinolytic activities of several such proteases, which are released independently from the H. pylori type IV secretion system encoded by the cag pathogenicity island (cagPAI. Among these, we found the predicted serine protease HtrA (Hp1019, which was previously identified in the bacterial secretome of H. pylori. Importantly, we further found that the H. pylori genes hp1018 and hp1019 represent a single gene likely coding for an exported protein. Here, we directly verified proteolytic activity of HtrA in vitro and identified the HtrA protease in zymograms by mass spectrometry. Overexpressed and purified HtrA exhibited pronounced proteolytic activity, which is inactivated after mutation of Ser205 to alanine in the predicted active center of HtrA. These data demonstrate that H. pylori secretes HtrA as an active protease, which might represent a novel candidate target for therapeutic intervention strategies.

  2. Resting-state fMRI revealed different brain activities responding to valproic acid and levetiracetam in benign epilepsy with central-temporal spikes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Qirui; Zhang, Zhiqiang; Xu, Qiang; Wu, Han; Li, Zhipeng; Lu, Guangming; Yang, Fang; Li, Qian; Hu, Zheng; Dante, Mantini; Li, Kai

    2017-01-01

    Our aim was to investigate regional difference in brain activities in response to antiepileptic drug (AED) medications in benign epilepsy with central-temporal spikes (BECTS) using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Fifty-seven patients with BECTS underwent resting-state fMRI scans after receiving either valproic acid (VPA) (n = 15), levetiracetam (LEV) (n = 21), or no medication (n = 21). fMRI regional homogeneity (ReHo) parameter among the three groups of patients were compared and were correlated with total doses of AED in the two medicated groups. Compared with patients on no-medication, patients receiving either VPA or LEV showed decreased ReHo in the central-temporal region, frontal cortex, and thalamus. In particular, the VPA group showed greater ReHo decrease in the thalamus and milder in cortices and caudate heads compared with the LEV group. In addition, the VPA group demonstrated a negative correlation between ReHo values in the central-temporal region and medication dose. Both VPA and LEV inhibit resting-state neural activity in the central-temporal region, which is the main epileptogenic focus of BECTS. VPA reduced brain activity in the cortical epileptogenic regions and thalamus evenly, whereas LEV reduced brain activity predominantly in the cortices. Interestingly, VPA showed a cumulative effect on inhibiting brain activity in the epileptogenic regions in BECTS. (orig.)

  3. Characterization of Missouri surface waters near point sources of pollution reveals potential novel atmospheric route of exposure for bisphenol A and wastewater hormonal activity pattern

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassotis, Christopher D.; Alvarez, David A.; Taylor, Julia A.; vom Saal, Frederick S.; Nagel, Susan C.; Tillitt, Donald E.

    2015-01-01

    Surface water contamination by chemical pollutants increasingly threatens water quality around the world. Among the many contaminants found in surface water, there is growing concern regarding endocrine disrupting chemicals, based on their ability to interfere with some aspect of hormone action in exposed organisms, including humans. This study assessed water quality at several sites across Missouri (near wastewater treatment plants and airborne release sites of bisphenol A) based on hormone receptor activation potencies and chemical concentrationspresent in the surface water. We hypothesized that bisphenol A and ethinylestradiol would be greater in water near permitted airborne release sites and wastewater treatment plant inputs, respectively, and that these two compounds would be responsible for the majority of activities in receptor-based assays conducted with water collected near these sites. Concentrations of bisphenol A and ethinylestradiol were compared to observed receptor activities using authentic standards to assess contribution to total activities, and quantitation of a comprehensive set of wastewater compounds was performed to better characterize each site. Bisphenol A concentrations were found to be elevated in surface water near permitted airborne release sites, raising questions that airborne releases of BPA may influence nearby surface water contamination and may represent a previously underestimated source to the environment and potential for human exposure. Estrogen and androgen receptor activities of surface water samples were predictive of wastewater input, although the lower sensitivity of the ethinylestradiol ELISA relative to the very high sensitivity of the bioassay approaches did not allow a direct comparison. Wastewater-influenced sites also had elevated anti-estrogenic and anti-androgenic equivalence, while sites without wastewater discharges exhibited no antagonist activities.

  4. Catalytic water co-existing with a product peptide in the active site of HIV-1 protease revealed by X-ray structure analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vishal Prashar

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: It is known that HIV-1 protease is an important target for design of antiviral compounds in the treatment of Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS. In this context, understanding the catalytic mechanism of the enzyme is of crucial importance as transition state structure directs inhibitor design. Most mechanistic proposals invoke nucleophilic attack on the scissile peptide bond by a water molecule. But such a water molecule coexisting with any ligand in the active site has not been found so far in the crystal structures. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We report here the first observation of the coexistence in the active site, of a water molecule WAT1, along with the carboxyl terminal product (Q product peptide. The product peptide has been generated in situ through cleavage of the full-length substrate. The N-terminal product (P product has diffused out and is replaced by a set of water molecules while the Q product is still held in the active site through hydrogen bonds. The position of WAT1, which hydrogen bonds to both the catalytic aspartates, is different from when there is no substrate bound in the active site. We propose WAT1 to be the position from where catalytic water attacks the scissile peptide bond. Comparison of structures of HIV-1 protease complexed with the same oligopeptide substrate, but at pH 2.0 and at pH 7.0 shows interesting changes in the conformation and hydrogen bonding interactions from the catalytic aspartates. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The structure is suggestive of the repositioning, during substrate binding, of the catalytic water for activation and subsequent nucleophilic attack. The structure could be a snap shot of the enzyme active site primed for the next round of catalysis. This structure further suggests that to achieve the goal of designing inhibitors mimicking the transition-state, the hydrogen-bonding pattern between WAT1 and the enzyme should be replicated.

  5. Characterization of Missouri surface waters near point sources of pollution reveals potential novel atmospheric route of exposure for bisphenol A and wastewater hormonal activity pattern.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassotis, Christopher D; Alvarez, David A; Taylor, Julia A; vom Saal, Frederick S; Nagel, Susan C; Tillitt, Donald E

    2015-08-15

    Surface water contamination by chemical pollutants increasingly threatens water quality around the world. Among the many contaminants found in surface water, there is growing concern regarding endocrine disrupting chemicals, based on their ability to interfere with some aspect of hormone action in exposed organisms, including humans. This study assessed water quality at several sites across Missouri (near wastewater treatment plants and airborne release sites of bisphenol A) based on hormone receptor activation potencies and chemical concentrations present in the surface water. We hypothesized that bisphenol A and ethinylestradiol would be greater in water near permitted airborne release sites and wastewater treatment plant inputs, respectively, and that these two compounds would be responsible for the majority of activities in receptor-based assays conducted with water collected near these sites. Concentrations of bisphenol A and ethinylestradiol were compared to observed receptor activities using authentic standards to assess contribution to total activities, and quantitation of a comprehensive set of wastewater compounds was performed to better characterize each site. Bisphenol A concentrations were found to be elevated in surface water near permitted airborne release sites, raising questions that airborne releases of BPA may influence nearby surface water contamination and may represent a previously underestimated source to the environment and potential for human exposure. Estrogen and androgen receptor activities of surface water samples were predictive of wastewater input, although the lower sensitivity of the ethinylestradiol ELISA relative to the very high sensitivity of the bioassay approaches did not allow a direct comparison. Wastewater-influenced sites also had elevated anti-estrogenic and anti-androgenic equivalence, while sites without wastewater discharges exhibited no antagonist activities. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  6. Heart rate variability reveals that a decrease in parasympathetic ('rest-and-digest') activity dominates autonomic stress responses in a free-living seabird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Martina S; Vyssotski, Alexei L; Yamamoto, Maki; Yoda, Ken

    2017-10-01

    The autonomic stress response, often referred to as the 'fight-or-flight' response, is a highly conserved physiological reaction to stress in vertebrates that occurs via a decrease in parasympathetic (PNS) activity, which promotes self-maintenance 'rest and digest' processes, and an increase in sympathetic (SNS) activity, which prepares an animal for danger ('fight-or-flight'). Though the PNS and SNS both innervate most organs, they often control different tissues and functions within those organs (though the pacemaker of the heart is controlled by both). Moreover the PNS and SNS are regulated independently. Yet until now, most studies of autonomic stress responses in non-model species focused only on the SNS response. We used external electrocardiogram loggers to measure heart rate and heart rate variability indexes that reflect PNS and SNS activity in a seabird, the Streaked Shearwater (Calonectris leucomelas), during the stress of handling, and during recovery in the nest burrow or during restraint in a cloth bag. We show for the first time in a free-living animal that the autonomic stress response is mediated primarily by a rapid decrease in PNS activity: handling stress induced a large and long-lasting depression of PNS 'rest-and-digest' activity that required two hours to recover. We also found evidence for a substantially smaller and shorter-lasting SNS 'fight-or-flight' response. Confinement in a cloth bag was less stressful for birds than handling, but more stressful than recovering in nest burrows. We show that quantifying autonomic activity from heart rate variability is effective for non-invasively studying stress physiology in free-living animals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Catalytic water co-existing with a product peptide in the active site of HIV-1 protease revealed by X-ray structure analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prashar, Vishal; Bihani, Subhash; Das, Amit; Ferrer, Jean-Luc; Hosur, Madhusoodan

    2009-11-17

    It is known that HIV-1 protease is an important target for design of antiviral compounds in the treatment of Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). In this context, understanding the catalytic mechanism of the enzyme is of crucial importance as transition state structure directs inhibitor design. Most mechanistic proposals invoke nucleophilic attack on the scissile peptide bond by a water molecule. But such a water molecule coexisting with any ligand in the active site has not been found so far in the crystal structures. We report here the first observation of the coexistence in the active site, of a water molecule WAT1, along with the carboxyl terminal product (Q product) peptide. The product peptide has been generated in situ through cleavage of the full-length substrate. The N-terminal product (P product) has diffused out and is replaced by a set of water molecules while the Q product is still held in the active site through hydrogen bonds. The position of WAT1, which hydrogen bonds to both the catalytic aspartates, is different from when there is no substrate bound in the active site. We propose WAT1 to be the position from where catalytic water attacks the scissile peptide bond. Comparison of structures of HIV-1 protease complexed with the same oligopeptide substrate, but at pH 2.0 and at pH 7.0 shows interesting changes in the conformation and hydrogen bonding interactions from the catalytic aspartates. The structure is suggestive of the repositioning, during substrate binding, of the catalytic water for activation and subsequent nucleophilic attack. The structure could be a snap shot of the enzyme active site primed for the next round of catalysis. This structure further suggests that to achieve the goal of designing inhibitors mimicking the transition-state, the hydrogen-bonding pattern between WAT1 and the enzyme should be replicated.

  8. Global genetic analyses reveal strong inter-ethnic variability in the loss of activity of the organic cation transporter OCT1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seitz, Tina; Stalmann, Robert; Dalila, Nawar; Chen, Jiayin; Pojar, Sherin; Dos Santos Pereira, Joao N; Krätzner, Ralph; Brockmöller, Jürgen; Tzvetkov, Mladen V

    2015-01-01

    The organic cation transporter OCT1 (SLC22A1) mediates the uptake of vitamin B1, cationic drugs, and xenobiotics into hepatocytes. Nine percent of Caucasians lack or have very low OCT1 activity due to loss-of-function polymorphisms in OCT1 gene. Here we analyzed the global genetic variability in OCT1 to estimate the therapeutic relevance of OCT1 polymorphisms in populations beyond Caucasians and to identify evolutionary patterns of the common loss of OCT1 activity in humans. We applied massively parallel sequencing to screen for coding polymorphisms in 1,079 unrelated individuals from 53 populations worldwide. The obtained data was combined with the existing 1000 Genomes data comprising an additional 1,092 individuals from 14 populations. The identified OCT1 variants were characterized in vitro regarding their cellular localization and their ability to transport 10 known OCT1 substrates. Both the population genetics data and transport data were used in tandem to generate a world map of loss of OCT1 activity. We identified 16 amino acid substitutions potentially causing loss of OCT1 function and analyzed them together with five amino acid substitutions that were not expected to affect OCT1 function. The variants constituted 16 major alleles and 14 sub-alleles. Six major alleles showed improper subcellular localization leading to substrate-wide loss in activity. Five major alleles showed correct subcellular localization, but substrate-specific loss of activity. Striking differences were observed in the frequency of loss of OCT1 activity worldwide. While most East Asian and Oceanian individuals had completely functional OCT1, 80 % of native South American Indians lacked functional OCT1 alleles. In East Asia and Oceania the average nucleotide diversity of the loss-of-function variants was much lower than that of the variants that do not affect OCT1 function (ratio of 0.03) and was significantly lower than the theoretically expected heterozygosity (Tajima's D = -1

  9. Functional characterization of human RSK4, a new 90-kDa ribosomal S6 kinase, reveals constitutive activation in most cell types

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dümmler, Bettina A; Hauge, Camilla; Silber, Joachim

    2005-01-01

    characterization of a predicted new human RSK homologue, RSK4. We showed that RSK4 is a predominantly cytosolic protein with very low expression and several characteristics of the RSK family kinases, including the presence of two functional kinase domains and a C-terminal docking site for ERK. Surprisingly......, however, in all cell types analyzed, endogenous RSK4 was maximally (constitutively) activated under serum-starved conditions where other RSKs are inactive due to their requirement for growth factor stimulation. Constitutive activation appeared to result from constitutive phosphorylation of Ser232, Ser372...

  10. Expression of multiple slow myosin heavy chain genes reveals a diversity of zebrafish slow twitch muscle fibres with differing requirements for Hedgehog and Prdm1 activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elworthy, Stone; Hargrave, Murray; Knight, Robert; Mebus, Katharina; Ingham, Philip W

    2008-06-01

    The zebrafish embryo develops a series of anatomically distinct slow twitch muscle fibres that characteristically express genes encoding lineage-specific isoforms of sarcomeric proteins such as MyHC and troponin. We show here that different subsets of these slow fibres express distinct members of a tandem array of slow MyHC genes. The first slow twitch muscle fibres to differentiate, which are specified by the activity of the transcription factor Prdm1 (also called Ubo or Blimp1) in response to Hedgehog (Hh) signalling, express the smyhc1 gene. Subsequently, secondary slow twitch fibres differentiate in most cases independently of Hh activity. We find that although some of these later-forming fibres also express smyhc1, others express smyhc2 or smyhc3. We show that the smyhc1-positive fibres express the ubo (prdm1) gene and adopt fast twitch fibre characteristics in the absence of Prdm1 activity, whereas those that do not express smyhc1 can differentiate independently of Prdm1 function. Conversely, some smyhc2-expressing fibres, although independent of Prdm1 function, require Hh activity to form. The adult trunk slow fibres express smyhc2 and smyhc3, but lack smyhc1 expression. The different slow fibres in the craniofacial muscles variously express smyhc1, smyhc2 and smyhc3, and all differentiate independently of Prdm1.

  11. Enhancement of ligninolytic enzyme activities in a Trametes maxima–Paecilomyces carneus co-culture: Key factors revealed after screening using a Plackett–Burman experimental design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilberth Chan Cupul

    2014-05-01

    Conclusions: Interaction between indigenous fungi: T. maxima–P. carneus improves laccase and MnP activities. The inoculation time of P. carneus on T. maxima plays an important role in the laccase and MnP enhancement. The nutritional requirements for enzyme improvement in a co-culture system are different from those required for a monoculture system.

  12. Metabolic Genetic Screens Reveal Multidimensional Regulation of Virulence Gene Expression in Listeria monocytogenes and an Aminopeptidase That Is Critical for PrfA Protein Activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, Sivan; Linsky, Marika; Lobel, Lior; Rabinovich, Lev; Sigal, Nadejda; Herskovits, Anat A

    2017-06-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is an environmental saprophyte and intracellular bacterial pathogen. Upon invading mammalian cells, the bacterium senses abrupt changes in its metabolic environment, which are rapidly transduced to regulation of virulence gene expression. To explore the relationship between L. monocytogenes metabolism and virulence, we monitored virulence gene expression dynamics across a library of genetic mutants grown under two metabolic conditions known to activate the virulent state: charcoal-treated rich medium containing glucose-1-phosphate and minimal defined medium containing limiting concentrations of branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs). We identified over 100 distinct mutants that exhibit aberrant virulence gene expression profiles, the majority of which mapped to nonessential metabolic genes. Mutants displayed enhanced, decreased, and early and late virulence gene expression profiles, as well as persistent levels, demonstrating a high plasticity in virulence gene regulation. Among the mutants, one was noteworthy for its particularly low virulence gene expression level and mapped to an X-prolyl aminopeptidase (PepP). We show that this peptidase plays a role in posttranslational activation of the major virulence regulator, PrfA. Specifically, PepP mediates recruitment of PrfA to the cytoplasmic membrane, a step identified as critical for PrfA protein activation. This study establishes a novel step in the complex mechanism of PrfA activation and further highlights the cross regulation of metabolism and virulence. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  13. Comparative activity of tigecycline and tetracycline on Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria revealed by a multicentre study in four North European countries

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nilsson, Lennart E; Frimodt-Møller, Niels; Vaara, Martti

    2011-01-01

    This study involves a multicentre surveillance of tigecycline and tetracycline activity against Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria from primary care centres (PCCs), general hospital wards (GHWs) and intensive care units (ICUs) in Denmark (n = 9), Finland (n = 10), Norway (n = 7) and Sweden (n...

  14. Altered spontaneous activity of posterior cingulate cortex and superior temporal gyrus are associated with a smoking cessation treatment outcome using varenicline revealed by regional homogeneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Chao; Shen, Zhujing; Huang, Peiyu; Qian, Wei; Yu, Xinfeng; Sun, Jianzhong; Yu, Hualiang; Yang, Yihong; Zhang, Minming

    2017-06-01

    Compared to nonsmokers, smokers exhibit a number of potentially important differences in regional brain function. However, little is known about the associations between the local spontaneous brain activity and smoking cessation treatment outcomes. In the present analysis, we aimed to evaluate whether the local features of spontaneous brain activity prior to the target quit date was associated with the smoking cessation outcomes. All the participants underwent magnetic resonance imaging scans and smoking-related behavioral assessments. After a 12-week treatment with varenicline, 23 smokers succeeded in quitting smoking and 32 failed. Smokers underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanning prior to an open label smoking cessation treatment trial. Regional homogeneity (ReHo) was used to measure spontaneous brain activity, and whole-brain voxel-wise comparisons of ReHo were performed to detect brain regions with altered spontaneous brain activity between relapser and quitter groups. After controlling for potentially confounding factors including years of education, years smoked, cigarettes smoked per day and FTND score as covariates, compared to quitters, relapsers displayed significantly decreased ReHo in bilateral posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), as well as increased ReHo in left superior temporal gyrus (STG). These preliminary results suggest that regional brain function variables may be promising predictors of smoking relapse. This study provided novel insights into the neurobiological mechanisms underlying smoking relapse. A deeper understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms associated with relapse may result in novel pharmacological and behavioral interventions.

  15. Different design of enzyme-triggered CO-releasing molecules (ET-CORMs) reveals quantitative differences in biological activities in terms of toxicity and inflammation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stamellou, E.; Storz, D.; Botov, S.; Ntasis, E.; Wedel, J.; Sollazzo, S.; Kraemer, B. K.; van Son, W.; Seelen, M.; Schmalz, H. G.; Schmidt, A.; Hafner, M.; Yard, B. A.

    2014-01-01

    Acyloxydiene-Fe(CO)(3) complexes can act as enzyme-triggered CO-releasing molecules (ET-CORMs). Their biological activity strongly depends on the mother compound from which they are derived, i.e, cyclohexenone or cyclohexanedione, and on the position of the ester functionality they harbour. The

  16. Memory retrieval of smoking-related images induce greater insula activation as revealed by an fMRI-based delayed matching to sample task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janes, Amy C; Ross, Robert S; Farmer, Stacey; Frederick, Blaise B; Nickerson, Lisa D; Lukas, Scott E; Stern, Chantal E

    2015-03-01

    Nicotine dependence is a chronic and difficult to treat disorder. While environmental stimuli associated with smoking precipitate craving and relapse, it is unknown whether smoking cues are cognitively processed differently than neutral stimuli. To evaluate working memory differences between smoking-related and neutral stimuli, we conducted a delay-match-to-sample (DMS) task concurrently with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in nicotine-dependent participants. The DMS task evaluates brain activation during the encoding, maintenance and retrieval phases of working memory. Smoking images induced significantly more subjective craving, and greater midline cortical activation during encoding in comparison to neutral stimuli that were similar in content yet lacked a smoking component. The insula, which is involved in maintaining nicotine dependence, was active during the successful retrieval of previously viewed smoking versus neutral images. In contrast, neutral images required more prefrontal cortex-mediated active maintenance during the maintenance period. These findings indicate that distinct brain regions are involved in the different phases of working memory for smoking-related versus neutral images. Importantly, the results implicate the insula in the retrieval of smoking-related stimuli, which is relevant given the insula's emerging role in addiction. © 2013 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  17. Insight into the mechanism revealing the peroxidase mimetic catalytic activity of quaternary CuZnFeS nanocrystals: colorimetric biosensing of hydrogen peroxide and glucose

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalui, Amit; Pradhan, Bapi; Thupakula, Umamahesh; Khan, Ali Hossain; Kumar, Gundam Sandeep; Ghosh, Tanmay; Satpati, Biswarup; Acharya, Somobrata

    2015-05-01

    Artificial enzyme mimetics have attracted immense interest recently because natural enzymes undergo easy denaturation under environmental conditions restricting practical usefulness. We report for the first time chalcopyrite CuZnFeS (CZIS) alloyed nanocrystals (NCs) as novel biomimetic catalysts with efficient intrinsic peroxidase-like activity. Novel peroxidase activities of CZIS NCs have been evaluated by catalytic oxidation of the peroxidase substrate 3,3',5,5'-tetramethylbenzidine (TMB) in the presence of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). CZIS NCs demonstrate the synergistic effect of elemental composition and photoactivity towards peroxidase-like activity. The quaternary CZIS NCs show enhanced intrinsic peroxidase-like activity compared to the binary NCs with the same constituent elements. Intrinsic peroxidase-like activity has been correlated with the energy band position of CZIS NCs extracted using scanning tunneling spectroscopy and ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy. Kinetic analyses indicate Michaelis-Menten enzyme kinetic model catalytic behavior describing the rate of the enzymatic reaction by correlating the reaction rate with substrate concentration. Typical color reactions arising from the catalytic oxidation of TMB over CZIS NCs with H2O2 have been utilized to establish a simple and sensitive colorimetric assay for detection of H2O2 and glucose. CZIS NCs are recyclable catalysts showing high efficiency in multiple uses. Our study may open up the possibility of designing new photoactive multi-component alloyed NCs as enzyme mimetics in biotechnology applications.Artificial enzyme mimetics have attracted immense interest recently because natural enzymes undergo easy denaturation under environmental conditions restricting practical usefulness. We report for the first time chalcopyrite CuZnFeS (CZIS) alloyed nanocrystals (NCs) as novel biomimetic catalysts with efficient intrinsic peroxidase-like activity. Novel peroxidase activities of CZIS NCs have been

  18. Systematic analysis of rat 12/15-lipoxygenase enzymes reveals critical role for spinal eLOX3 hepoxilin synthase activity in inflammatory hyperalgesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregus, Ann M; Dumlao, Darren S; Wei, Spencer C; Norris, Paul C; Catella, Laura C; Meyerstein, Flore G; Buczynski, Matthew W; Steinauer, Joanne J; Fitzsimmons, Bethany L; Yaksh, Tony L; Dennis, Edward A

    2013-05-01

    Previously, we observed significant increases in spinal 12-lipoxygenase (LOX) metabolites, in particular, hepoxilins, which contribute to peripheral inflammation-induced tactile allodynia. However, the enzymatic sources of hepoxilin synthase (HXS) activity in rats remain elusive. Therefore, we overexpressed each of the 6 rat 12/15-LOX enzymes in HEK-293T cells and measured by LC-MS/MS the formation of HXB3, 12-HETE, 8-HETE, and 15-HETE from arachidonic acid (AA) at baseline and in the presence of LOX inhibitors (NDGA, AA-861, CDC, baicalein, and PD146176) vs. vehicle-treated and mock-transfected controls. We detected the following primary intrinsic activities: 12-LOX (Alox12, Alox15), 15-LOX (Alox15b), and HXS (Alox12, Alox15). Similar to human and mouse orthologs, proteins encoded by rat Alox12b and Alox12e possessed minimal 12-LOX activity with AA as substrate, while eLOX3 (encoded by Aloxe3) exhibited HXS without 12-LOX activity when coexpressed with Alox12b or supplemented with 12-HpETE. CDC potently inhibited HXS and 12-LOX activity in vitro (relative IC50s: CDC, ~0.5 and 0.8 μM, respectively) and carrageenan-evoked tactile allodynia in vivo. Notably, peripheral inflammation significantly increased spinal eLOX3; intrathecal pretreatment with either siRNA targeting Aloxe3 or an eLOX3-selective antibody attenuated the associated allodynia. These findings implicate spinal eLOX3-mediated hepoxilin synthesis in inflammatory hyperesthesia and underscore the importance of developing more selective 12-LOX/HXS inhibitors.

  19. Weak Activity of Haloalkane Dehalogenase LinB with 1,2,3-Trichloropropane Revealed by X-Ray Crystallography and Microcalorimetry▿

    OpenAIRE

    Monincová, Marta; Prokop, Zbyněk; Vévodová, Jitka; Nagata, Yuji; Damborský, Jiří

    2007-01-01

    1,2,3-Trichloropropane (TCP) is a highly toxic and recalcitrant compound. Haloalkane dehalogenases are bacterial enzymes that catalyze the cleavage of a carbon-halogen bond in a wide range of organic halogenated compounds. Haloalkane dehalogenase LinB from Sphingobium japonicum UT26 has, for a long time, been considered inactive with TCP, since the reaction cannot be easily detected by conventional analytical methods. Here we demonstrate detection of the weak activity (kcat = 0.005 s−1) of Li...

  20. Animal-Borne Imaging Reveals Novel Insights into the Foraging Behaviors and Diel Activity of a Large-Bodied Apex Predator, the American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

    OpenAIRE

    Nifong, James C.; Nifong, Rachel L.; Silliman, Brian R.; Lowers, Russell H.; Guillette, Louis J.; Ferguson, Jake M.; Welsh, Matthew; Abernathy, Kyler; Marshall, Greg

    2014-01-01

    Large-bodied, top- and apex predators (e.g., crocodilians, sharks, wolves, killer whales) can exert strong top-down effects within ecological communities through their interactions with prey. Due to inherent difficulties while studying the behavior of these often dangerous predatory species, relatively little is known regarding their feeding behaviors and activity patterns, information that is essential to understanding their role in regulating food web dynamics and ecological processes. Here...

  1. Systematic analysis of rat 12/15-lipoxygenase enzymes reveals critical role for spinal eLOX3 hepoxilin synthase activity in inflammatory hyperalgesia

    OpenAIRE

    Gregus, Ann M.; Dumlao, Darren S.; Wei, Spencer C.; Norris, Paul C.; Catella, Laura C.; Meyerstein, Flore G.; Buczynski, Matthew W.; Steinauer, Joanne J.; Fitzsimmons, Bethany L.; Yaksh, Tony L.; Dennis, Edward A.

    2013-01-01

    Previously, we observed significant increases in spinal 12-lipoxygenase (LOX) metabolites, in particular, hepoxilins, which contribute to peripheral inflammation-induced tactile allodynia. However, the enzymatic sources of hepoxilin synthase (HXS) activity in rats remain elusive. Therefore, we overexpressed each of the 6 rat 12/15-LOX enzymes in HEK-293T cells and measured by LC-MS/MS the formation of HXB3, 12-HETE, 8-HETE, and 15-HETE from arachidonic acid (AA) at baseline and in the presenc...

  2. Structural Analysis of β-Fructofuranosidase from Xanthophyllomyces dendrorhous Reveals Unique Features and the Crucial Role of N-Glycosylation in Oligomerization and Activity*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramírez-Escudero, Mercedes; Gimeno-Pérez, María; González, Beatriz; Linde, Dolores; Merdzo, Zoran; Fernández-Lobato, María; Sanz-Aparicio, Julia

    2016-01-01

    Xanthophyllomyces dendrorhous β-fructofuranosidase (XdINV)is a highly glycosylated dimeric enzyme that hydrolyzes sucrose and releases fructose from various fructooligosaccharides (FOS) and fructans. It also catalyzes the synthesis of FOS, prebiotics that stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria in human gut. In contrast to most fructosylating enzymes, XdINV produces neo-FOS, which makes it an interesting biotechnology target. We present here its three-dimensional structure, which shows the expected bimodular arrangement and also a long extension of its C terminus that together with an N-linked glycan mediate the formation of an unusual dimer. The two active sites of the dimer are connected by a long crevice, which might indicate its potential ability to accommodate branched fructans. This arrangement could be representative of a group of GH32 yeast enzymes having the traits observed in XdINV. The inactive D80A mutant was used to obtain complexes with relevant substrates and products, with their crystals structures showing at least four binding subsites at each active site. Moreover, two different positions are observed from subsite +2 depending on the substrate, and thus, a flexible loop (Glu-334–His-343) is essential in binding sucrose and β(2–1)-linked oligosaccharides. Conversely, β(2–6) and neo-type substrates are accommodated mainly by stacking to Trp-105, explaining the production of neokestose and the efficient fructosylating activity of XdINV on α-glucosides. The role of relevant residues has been investigated by mutagenesis and kinetics measurements, and a model for the transfructosylating reaction has been proposed. The plasticity of its active site makes XdINV a valuable and flexible biocatalyst to produce novel bioconjugates. PMID:26823463

  3. Three-dimensional culture of sebaceous gland cells revealing the role of prostaglandin E{sub 2}-induced activation of canonical Wnt signaling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yoshida, Go J., E-mail: medical21go@yahoo.co.jp; Saya, Hideyuki

    2013-09-06

    Highlights: •Three-dimensional culture generates “semi-vivo” sebaceous glands. •Xenograft model failed to mimic the biology of sebaceous glands in vivo. •Proinflammatory cytokine PGE{sub 2} enhances Wnt signal activity in the organoids. •PGE{sub 2} influences on the mitochondrial and lipid metabolism in the organoids. •Considering 3R agenda, “semi-vivo” sebaceous glands are useful for research. -- Abstract: Background: Prostaglandin E{sub 2} (PGE{sub 2}) is a proinflammatory mediator and activates the canonical Wnt–β-catenin signaling pathway in hematopoietic stem cells. The SZ95 cell line was established from human sebaceous gland cells and is studied as a model system for these cells. Given that 2D culture of SZ95 cells does not recapitulate the organization of sebaceous glands in situ, we developed a 3D culture system for these cells and examined the effects of PGE{sub 2} on cell morphology and function. Results: SZ95 cells maintained in 3D culture formed organoids that mimicked the organization of sebaceous glands in situ, including the establishment of a basement membrane. Organoids exposed to PGE{sub 2} were larger and adopted a more complex organization compared with control organoids. PGE{sub 2} activated the canonical Wnt signaling pathway as well as increased cell viability and proliferation, mitochondrial metabolism, and lipid synthesis in the organoids. Conclusions: Culture of SZ95 cells in 3D culture system recapitulates the structure and susceptibility to PGE{sub 2} of sebaceous glands in situ and should prove useful for studies of the response of these glands to inflammation and other environmental stressors. Our results also implicate PGE{sub 2}-induced activation of canonical Wnt signaling pathway in regulation of the morphology,proliferation, and function of “semi-vivo” sebaceous glands.

  4. Analysis of non-typeable Haemophilous influenzae VapC1 mutations reveals structural features required for toxicity and flexibility in the active site.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brooke Hamilton

    Full Text Available Bacteria have evolved mechanisms that allow them to survive in the face of a variety of stresses including nutrient deprivation, antibiotic challenge and engulfment by predator cells. A switch to dormancy represents one strategy that reduces energy utilization and can render cells resistant to compounds that kill growing bacteria. These persister cells pose a problem during treatment of infections with antibiotics, and dormancy mechanisms may contribute to latent infections. Many bacteria encode toxin-antitoxin (TA gene pairs that play an important role in dormancy and the formation of persisters. VapBC gene pairs comprise the largest of the Type II TA systems in bacteria and they produce a VapC ribonuclease toxin whose activity is inhibited by the VapB antitoxin. Despite the importance of VapBC TA pairs in dormancy and persister formation, little information exists on the structural features of VapC proteins required for their toxic function in vivo. Studies reported here identified 17 single mutations that disrupt the function of VapC1 from non-typeable H. influenzae in vivo. 3-D modeling suggests that side chains affected by many of these mutations sit near the active site of the toxin protein. Phylogenetic comparisons and secondary mutagenesis indicate that VapC1 toxicity requires an alternative active site motif found in many proteobacteria. Expression of the antitoxin VapB1 counteracts the activity of VapC1 mutants partially defective for toxicity, indicating that the antitoxin binds these mutant proteins in vivo. These findings identify critical chemical features required for the biological function of VapC toxins and PIN-domain proteins.

  5. [(35)S]-GTPgammaS autoradiography reveals alpha(2) adrenoceptor-mediated G-protein activation in amygdala and lateral septum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman-Tancredi, A; Chaput, C; Touzard, M; Millan, M J

    2000-04-03

    alpha(2)-adrenoceptor-mediated G-protein activation was examined by [(35)S]-GTPgammaS autoradiography. In alpha(2)-adrenoceptor-rich regions (amygdala, lateral septum), noradrenaline stimulated [(35)S]-GTPgammaS binding. These actions were abolished by the selective alpha(2) antagonist, atipamezole. Conversely, in caudate nucleus, which expresses few alpha(2) receptors, noradrenaline-induced stimulation was not inhibited by atipamezole, suggesting that it is not mediated by alpha(2)-adrenoceptors.

  6. Crystal structures reveal metal-binding plasticity at the metallo-β-lactamase active site of PqqB from Pseudomonas putida

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tu, Xiongying; Latham, John A.; Klema, Valerie J.; Evans III, Robert L.; Li, Chao; Klinman, Judith P.; Wilmot, Carrie M. (UMM); (UCB)

    2017-08-19

    PqqB is an enzyme involved in the biosynthesis of pyrroloquinoline quinone and a distal member of the metallo-β-lactamase (MBL) superfamily. PqqB lacks two residues in the conserved signature motif HxHxDH that makes up the key metal-chelating elements that can bind up to two metal ions at the active site of MBLs and other members of its superfamily. Here, we report crystal structures of PqqB bound to Mn2+, Mg2+, Cu2+, and Zn2+. These structures demonstrate that PqqB can still bind metal ions at the canonical MBL active site. The fact that PqqB can adapt its side chains to chelate a wide spectrum of metal ions with different coordination features on a uniform main chain scaffold demonstrates its metal-binding plasticity. This plasticity may provide insights into the structural basis of promiscuous activities found in ensembles of metal complexes within this superfamily. Furthermore, PqqB belongs to a small subclass of MBLs that contain an additional CxCxxC motif that binds a structural Zn2+. Our data support a key role for this motif in dimerization.

  7. Gene Expression Analysis Reveals the Concurrent Activation of Proapoptotic and Antioxidant-Defensive Mechanisms in Flavokawain B-Treated Cervical Cancer HeLa Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeap, Swee Keong; Abu, Nadiah; Akthar, Nadeem; Ho, Wan Yong; Ky, Huynh; Tan, Sheau Wei; Alitheen, Noorjahan Banu; Kamarul, Tunku

    2017-09-01

    Flavokawain B (FKB) is known to possess promising anticancer abilities. This is demonstrated in various cancer cell lines including HeLa cells. Cervical cancer is among the most widely diagnosed cancer among women today. Though FKB has been shown to be effective in treating cancer cells, the exact molecular mechanism is still unknown. This study is aimed at understanding the effects of FKB on HeLa cells using a microarray-based mRNA expression profiling and proteome profiling of stress-related proteins. The results of this study suggest that FKB induced cell death through p21-mediated cell cycle arrest and activation of p38. However, concurrent activation of antioxidant-related pathways and iron sequestration pathway followed by activation of ER-resident stress proteins clearly indicate that FKB failed to induce apoptosis in HeLa cells via oxidative stress. This effect implies that the protection of HeLa cells by FKB from H 2 O 2 -induced cell death is via neutralization of reactive oxygen species.

  8. Gene Expression Analysis Reveals the Concurrent Activation of Proapoptotic and Antioxidant-Defensive Mechanisms in Flavokawain B–Treated Cervical Cancer HeLa Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeap, Swee Keong; Abu, Nadiah; Akthar, Nadeem; Ho, Wan Yong; Ky, Huynh; Tan, Sheau Wei; Alitheen, Noorjahan Banu; Kamarul, Tunku

    2016-01-01

    Flavokawain B (FKB) is known to possess promising anticancer abilities. This is demonstrated in various cancer cell lines including HeLa cells. Cervical cancer is among the most widely diagnosed cancer among women today. Though FKB has been shown to be effective in treating cancer cells, the exact molecular mechanism is still unknown. This study is aimed at understanding the effects of FKB on HeLa cells using a microarray-based mRNA expression profiling and proteome profiling of stress-related proteins. The results of this study suggest that FKB induced cell death through p21-mediated cell cycle arrest and activation of p38. However, concurrent activation of antioxidant-related pathways and iron sequestration pathway followed by activation of ER-resident stress proteins clearly indicate that FKB failed to induce apoptosis in HeLa cells via oxidative stress. This effect implies that the protection of HeLa cells by FKB from H2O2–induced cell death is via neutralization of reactive oxygen species. PMID:27458249

  9. Three-dimensional super-resolution microscopy of the inactive X chromosome territory reveals a collapse of its active nuclear compartment harboring distinct Xist RNA foci.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smeets, Daniel; Markaki, Yolanda; Schmid, Volker J; Kraus, Felix; Tattermusch, Anna; Cerase, Andrea; Sterr, Michael; Fiedler, Susanne; Demmerle, Justin; Popken, Jens; Leonhardt, Heinrich; Brockdorff, Neil; Cremer, Thomas; Schermelleh, Lothar; Cremer, Marion

    2014-01-01

    A Xist RNA decorated Barr body is the structural hallmark of the compacted inactive X territory in female mammals. Using super-resolution three-dimensional structured illumination microscopy (3D-SIM) and quantitative image analysis, we compared its ultrastructure with active chromosome territories (CTs) in human and mouse somatic cells, and explored the spatio-temporal process of Barr body formation at onset of inactivation in early differentiating mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs). We demonstrate that all CTs are composed of structurally linked chromatin domain clusters (CDCs). In active CTs the periphery of CDCs harbors low-density chromatin enriched with transcriptionally competent markers, called the perichromatin region (PR). The PR borders on a contiguous channel system, the interchromatin compartment (IC), which starts at nuclear pores and pervades CTs. We propose that the PR and macromolecular complexes in IC channels together form the transcriptionally permissive active nuclear compartment (ANC). The Barr body differs from active CTs by a partially collapsed ANC with CDCs coming significantly closer together, although a rudimentary IC channel system connected to nuclear pores is maintained. Distinct Xist RNA foci, closely adjacent to the nuclear matrix scaffold attachment factor-A (SAF-A) localize throughout Xi along the rudimentary ANC. In early differentiating ESCs initial Xist RNA spreading precedes Barr body formation, which occurs concurrent with the subsequent exclusion of RNA polymerase II (RNAP II). Induction of a transgenic autosomal Xist RNA in a male ESC triggers the formation of an 'autosomal Barr body' with less compacted chromatin and incomplete RNAP II exclusion. 3D-SIM provides experimental evidence for profound differences between the functional architecture of transcriptionally active CTs and the Barr body. Basic structural features of CT organization such as CDCs and IC channels are however still recognized, arguing against a uniform

  10. Microarray and pathway analysis reveal distinct mechanisms underlying cannabinoid-mediated modulation of LPS-induced activation of BV-2 microglial cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Juknat

    Full Text Available Cannabinoids are known to exert immunosuppressive activities. However, the mechanisms which contribute to these effects are unknown. Using lipopolysaccharide (LPS to activate BV-2 microglial cells, we examined how Δ(9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, the major psychoactive component of marijuana, and cannabidiol (CBD the non-psychoactive component, modulate the inflammatory response. Microarray analysis of genome-wide mRNA levels was performed using Illumina platform and the resulting expression patterns analyzed using the Ingenuity Pathway Analysis to identify functional subsets of genes, and the Ingenuity System Database to denote the gene networks regulated by CBD and THC. From the 5338 transcripts that were differentially expressed across treatments, 400 transcripts were found to be upregulated by LPS, 502 by CBD+LPS and 424 by THC+LPS, while 145 were downregulated by LPS, 297 by CBD+LPS and 149 by THC+LPS, by 2-fold or more (p≤0.005. Results clearly link the effects of CBD and THC to inflammatory signaling pathways and identify new cannabinoid targets in the MAPK pathway (Dusp1, Dusp8, Dusp2, cell cycle related (Cdkn2b, Gadd45a as well as JAK/STAT regulatory molecules (Socs3, Cish, Stat1. The impact of CBD on LPS-stimulated gene expression was greater than that of THC. We attribute this difference to the fact that CBD highly upregulated several genes encoding negative regulators of both NFκB and AP-1 transcriptional activities, such as Trib3 and Dusp1 known to be modulated through Nrf2 activation. The CBD-specific expression profile reflected changes associated with oxidative stress and glutathione depletion via Trib3 and expression of ATF4 target genes. Furthermore, the CBD affected genes were shown to be controlled by nuclear factors usually involved in regulation of stress response and inflammation, mainly via Nrf2/Hmox1 axis and the Nrf2/ATF4-Trib3 pathway. These observations indicate that CBD, and less so THC, induce a cellular stress

  11. Transcriptomic profiling of diverse Aedes aegypti strains reveals increased basal-level immune activation in dengue virus-refractory populations and identifies novel virus-vector molecular interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuzhen Sim

    Full Text Available Genetic variation among Aedes aegypti populations can greatly influence their vector competence for human pathogens such as the dengue virus (DENV. While intra-species transcriptome differences remain relatively unstudied when compared to coding sequence polymorphisms, they also affect numerous aspects of mosquito biology. Comparative molecular profiling of mosquito strain transcriptomes can therefore provide valuable insight into the regulation of vector competence. We established a panel of A. aegypti strains with varying levels of susceptibility to DENV, comprising both laboratory-maintained strains and field-derived colonies collected from geographically distinct dengue-endemic regions spanning South America, the Caribbean, and Southeast Asia. A comparative genome-wide gene expression microarray-based analysis revealed higher basal levels of numerous immunity-related gene transcripts in DENV-refractory mosquito strains than in susceptible strains, and RNA interference assays further showed different degrees of immune pathway contribution to refractoriness in different strains. By correlating transcript abundance patterns with DENV susceptibility across our panel, we also identified new candidate modulators of DENV infection in the mosquito, and we provide functional evidence for two potential DENV host factors and one potential restriction factor. Our comparative transcriptome dataset thus not only provides valuable information about immune gene regulation and usage in natural refractoriness of mosquito populations to dengue virus but also allows us to identify new molecular interactions between the virus and its mosquito vector.

  12. Crystal structure of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-associated Csn2 protein revealed Ca2+-dependent double-stranded DNA binding activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nam, Ki Hyun; Kurinov, Igor; Ke, Ailong

    2011-09-02

    Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) and their associated protein genes (cas genes) are widespread in bacteria and archaea. They form a line of RNA-based immunity to eradicate invading bacteriophages and malicious plasmids. A key molecular event during this process is the acquisition of new spacers into the CRISPR loci to guide the selective degradation of the matching foreign genetic elements. Csn2 is a Nmeni subtype-specific cas gene required for new spacer acquisition. Here we characterize the Enterococcus faecalis Csn2 protein as a double-stranded (ds-) DNA-binding protein and report its 2.7 Å tetrameric ring structure. The inner circle of the Csn2 tetrameric ring is ∼26 Å wide and populated with conserved lysine residues poised for nonspecific interactions with ds-DNA. Each Csn2 protomer contains an α/β domain and an α-helical domain; significant hinge motion was observed between these two domains. Ca(2+) was located at strategic positions in the oligomerization interface. We further showed that removal of Ca(2+) ions altered the oligomerization state of Csn2, which in turn severely decreased its affinity for ds-DNA. In summary, our results provided the first insight into the function of the Csn2 protein in CRISPR adaptation by revealing that it is a ds-DNA-binding protein functioning at the quaternary structure level and regulated by Ca(2+) ions.

  13. Shared active site architecture between archaeal PolD and multi-subunit RNA polymerases revealed by X-ray crystallography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauguet, Ludovic; Raia, Pierre; Henneke, Ghislaine; Delarue, Marc

    2016-08-22

    Archaeal replicative DNA polymerase D (PolD) constitute an atypical class of DNA polymerases made of a proofreading exonuclease subunit (DP1) and a larger polymerase catalytic subunit (DP2), both with unknown structures. We have determined the crystal structures of Pyrococcus abyssi DP1 and DP2 at 2.5 and 2.2 Å resolution, respectively, revealing a catalytic core strikingly different from all other known DNA polymerases (DNAPs). Rather, the PolD DP2 catalytic core has the same 'double-psi β-barrel' architecture seen in the RNA polymerase (RNAP) superfamily, which includes multi-subunit transcriptases of all domains of life, homodimeric RNA-silencing pathway RNAPs and atypical viral RNAPs. This finding bridges together, in non-viral world, DNA transcription and DNA replication within the same protein superfamily. This study documents further the complex evolutionary history of the DNA replication apparatus in different domains of life and proposes a classification of all extant DNAPs.

  14. Microarray analysis of HIV resistant female sex workers reveal a gene expression signature pattern reminiscent of a lowered immune activation state.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elijah M Songok

    Full Text Available To identify novel biomarkers for HIV-1 resistance, including pathways that may be critical in anti-HIV-1 vaccine design, we carried out a gene expression analysis on blood samples obtained from HIV-1 highly exposed seronegatives (HESN from a commercial sex worker cohort in Nairobi and compared their profiles to HIV-1 negative controls. Whole blood samples were collected from 43 HIV-1 resistant sex workers and a similar number of controls. Total RNA was extracted and hybridized to the Affymetrix HUG 133 Plus 2.0 micro arrays (Affymetrix, Santa Clara CA. Output data was analysed through ArrayAssist software (Agilent, San Jose CA. More than 2,274 probe sets were differentially expressed in the HESN as compared to the control group (fold change ≥1.3; p value ≤0.0001, FDR <0.05. Unsupervised hierarchical clustering of the differentially expressed genes readily distinguished HESNs from controls. Pathway analysis through the KEGG signaling database revealed a majority of the impacted pathways (13 of 15, 87% had genes that were significantly down regulated. The most down expressed pathways were glycolysis/gluconeogenesis, pentose phosphate, phosphatidyl inositol, natural killer cell cytotoxicity and T-cell receptor signaling. Ribosomal protein synthesis and tight junction genes were up regulated. We infer that the hallmark of HIV-1 resistance is down regulation of genes in key signaling pathways that HIV-1 depends on for infection.

  15. Functional activity and white matter microstructure reveal the independent effects of age of acquisition and proficiency on second-language learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nichols, Emily S; Joanisse, Marc F

    2016-12-01

    Two key factors govern how bilingual speakers neurally maintain two languages: the speakers' second language age of acquisition (AoA) and their subsequent proficiency. However, the relative roles of these two factors have been difficult to disentangle given that the two can be closely correlated, and most prior studies have examined the two factors in isolation. Here, we combine functional magnetic resonance imaging with diffusion tensor imaging to identify specific brain areas that are independently modulated by AoA and proficiency in second language speakers. First-language Mandarin Chinese speakers who are second language speakers of English were scanned as they performed a picture-word matching task in either language. In the same session we also acquired diffusion-weighted scans to assess white matter microstructure, along with behavioural measures of language proficiency prior to entering the scanner. Results reveal gray- and white-matter networks involving both the left and right hemisphere that independently vary as a function of a second-language speaker's AoA and proficiency, focused on the superior temporal gyrus, middle and inferior frontal gyrus, parahippocampal gyrus, and the basal ganglia. These results indicate that proficiency and AoA explain separate functional and structural networks in the bilingual brain, which we interpret as suggesting distinct types of plasticity for age-dependent effects (i.e., AoA) versus experience and/or predisposition (i.e., proficiency). Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Crystal Structure of Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)-associated Csn2 Protein Revealed Ca[superscript 2+]-dependent Double-stranded DNA Binding Activity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nam, Ki Hyun; Kurinov, Igor; Ke, Ailong (Cornell); (NWU)

    2012-05-22

    Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) and their associated protein genes (cas genes) are widespread in bacteria and archaea. They form a line of RNA-based immunity to eradicate invading bacteriophages and malicious plasmids. A key molecular event during this process is the acquisition of new spacers into the CRISPR loci to guide the selective degradation of the matching foreign genetic elements. Csn2 is a Nmeni subtype-specific cas gene required for new spacer acquisition. Here we characterize the Enterococcus faecalis Csn2 protein as a double-stranded (ds-) DNA-binding protein and report its 2.7 {angstrom} tetrameric ring structure. The inner circle of the Csn2 tetrameric ring is {approx}26 {angstrom} wide and populated with conserved lysine residues poised for nonspecific interactions with ds-DNA. Each Csn2 protomer contains an {alpha}/{beta} domain and an {alpha}-helical domain; significant hinge motion was observed between these two domains. Ca{sup 2+} was located at strategic positions in the oligomerization interface. We further showed that removal of Ca{sup 2+} ions altered the oligomerization state of Csn2, which in turn severely decreased its affinity for ds-DNA. In summary, our results provided the first insight into the function of the Csn2 protein in CRISPR adaptation by revealing that it is a ds-DNA-binding protein functioning at the quaternary structure level and regulated by Ca{sup 2+} ions.

  17. The Arabidopsis nox Mutant Lacking Carotene Hydroxylase Activity Reveals a Critical Role for Xanthophylls in Photosystem I Biogenesis[C][W

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dall’Osto, Luca; Piques, Maria; Ronzani, Michela; Molesini, Barbara; Alboresi, Alessandro; Cazzaniga, Stefano; Bassi, Roberto

    2013-01-01

    Carotenes, and their oxygenated derivatives xanthophylls, are essential components of the photosynthetic apparatus. They contribute to the assembly of photosynthetic complexes and participate in light absorption and chloroplast photoprotection. Here, we studied the role of xanthophylls, as distinct from that of carotenes, by characterizing a no xanthophylls (nox) mutant of Arabidopsis thaliana, which was obtained by combining mutations targeting the four carotenoid hydroxylase genes. nox plants retained α- and β-carotenes but were devoid in xanthophylls. The phenotype included depletion of light-harvesting complex (LHC) subunits and impairment of nonphotochemical quenching, two effects consistent with the location of xanthophylls in photosystem II antenna, but also a decreased efficiency of photosynthetic electron transfer, photosensitivity, and lethality in soil. Biochemical analysis revealed that the nox mutant was specifically depleted in photosystem I function due to a severe deficiency in PsaA/B subunits. While the stationary level of psaA/B transcripts showed no major differences between genotypes, the stability of newly synthesized PsaA/B proteins was decreased and translation of psaA/B mRNA was impaired in nox with respect to wild-type plants. We conclude that xanthophylls, besides their role in photoprotection and LHC assembly, are also needed for photosystem I core translation and stability, thus making these compounds indispensable for autotrophic growth. PMID:23396829

  18. Roles for SH2 and SH3 domains in Lyn kinase association with activated FcepsilonRI in RBL mast cells revealed by patterned surface analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammond, Stephanie; Wagenknecht-Wiesner, Alice; Veatch, Sarah L; Holowka, David; Baird, Barbara

    2009-10-01

    In mast cells, antigen-mediated cross-linking of IgE bound to its high-affinity surface receptor, FcepsilonRI, initiates a signaling cascade that culminates in degranulation and release of allergic mediators. Antigen-patterned surfaces, in which the antigen is deposited in micron-sized features on a silicon substrate, were used to examine the spatial relationship between clustered IgE-FcepsilonRI complexes and Lyn, the signal-initiating tyrosine kinase. RBL mast cells expressing wild-type Lyn-EGFP showed co-redistribution of this protein with clustered IgE receptors on antigen-patterned surfaces, whereas Lyn-EGFP containing an inhibitory point mutation in its SH2 domain did not significantly accumulate with the patterned antigen, and Lyn-EGFP with an inhibitory point mutation in its SH3 domain exhibited reduced interactions. Our results using antigen-patterned surfaces and quantitative cross-correlation image analysis reveal that both the SH2 and SH3 domains contribute to interactions between Lyn kinase and cross-linked IgE receptors in stimulated mast cells.

  19. Comparative Analysis of Transcriptomes of Macrophage Revealing the Mechanism of the Immunoregulatory Activities of a Novel Polysaccharide Isolated from Boletus speciosus Frost.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Xiang; Zhu, Hongqing; Hou, Yiling; Hou, Wanru; Zhang, Nan; Fu, Lei

    2017-01-01

    The mechanism of the immunoregulatory activities of polysaccharide is still not clear. Here, we performed the B-cell, T-cell, and macrophage cell proliferation, the cell cycle analysis of macrophage cells, sequenced the transcriptomes of control group macrophages, and Boletus speciosus Frost polysaccharide (BSF-1) group macrophages using Illumina sequencing technology to identify differentially expressed genes (DEGs) to determine the molecular mechanisms of immunomodulatory activity of BSF-1 in macrophages. These results suggested that BSF-1 could promote the proliferation of B-cell, T-cell, and macrophages, promote the proliferation of macrophage cells by abolishing cell cycle arrests in the G0/G1 phases, and promote cell cycle progression in S-phase and G2/M phase, which might induce cell division. A total of 12,498,414 and 11,840,624 bp paired-end reads were obtained for the control group and BSF-1 group, respectively, and they corresponded to a total size of 12.5 G bp and 11.8 G bp, respectively, after the low-quality reads and adapter sequences were removed. Approximately 81.83% of the total number of genes (8,257) were expressed reads per kilobase per million mapped reads (RPKM ≥1) and more than 1366 genes were highly expressed (RPKM >60) in the BSF-1 group. A gene ontology-enrichment analysis generated 13,042 assignments to cellular components, 13,094 assignments to biological processes, and 13,135 assignments to molecular functions. A Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathway enrichment analysis showed that the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathways are significantly enriched for DEGs between the two cell groups. An analysis of transcriptome resources enabled us to examine gene expression profiles, verify differential gene expression, and select candidate signaling pathways as the mechanisms of the immunomodulatory activity of BSF-1. Based on the experimental data, we believe that the significant antitumor activities of BSF-1 in

  20. Targeted impairment of thymidine kinase 2 expression in cells induces mitochondrial DNA depletion and reveals molecular mechanisms of compensation of mitochondrial respiratory activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Villarroya, Joan; Lara, Mari-Carmen; Dorado, Beatriz; Garrido, Marta; Garcia-Arumi, Elena; Meseguer, Anna; Hirano, Michio; Vila, Maya R.

    2011-01-01

    Highlights: → We impaired TK2 expression in Ost TK1 - cells via siRNA-mediated interference (TK2 - ). → TK2 impairment caused severe mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) depletion in quiescent cells. → Despite mtDNA depletion, TK2 - cells show high cytochrome oxidase activity. → Depletion of mtDNA occurs without imbalance in the mitochondrial dNTP pool. → Nuclear-encoded ENT1, DNA-pol γ, TFAM and TP gene expression is lowered in TK2 - cells. -- Abstract: The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) depletion syndrome comprises a clinically heterogeneous group of diseases characterized by reductions of the mtDNA abundance, without associated point mutations or rearrangements. We have developed the first in vitro model to study of mtDNA depletion due to reduced mitochondrial thymidine kinase 2 gene (TK2) expression in order to understand the molecular mechanisms involved in mtDNA depletion syndrome due to TK2 mutations. Small interfering RNA targeting TK2 mRNA was used to decrease TK2 expression in Ost TK1 - cells, a cell line devoid of endogenous thymidine kinase 1 (TK1). Stable TK2-deficient cell lines showed a reduction of TK2 levels close to 80%. In quiescent conditions, TK2-deficient cells showed severe mtDNA depletion, also close to 80% the control levels. However, TK2-deficient clones showed increased cytochrome c oxidase activity, higher cytochrome c oxidase subunit I transcript levels and higher subunit II protein expression respect to control cells. No alterations of the deoxynucleotide pools were found, whereas a reduction in the expression of genes involved in nucleoside/nucleotide homeostasis (human equilibrative nucleoside transporter 1, thymidine phosphorylase) and mtDNA maintenance (DNA-polymerase γ, mitochondrial transcription factor A) was observed. Our findings highlight the importance of cellular compensatory mechanisms that enhance the expression of respiratory components to ensure respiratory activity despite profound depletion in mtDNA levels.

  1. High content image-based screening of a protease inhibitor library reveals compounds broadly active against Rift Valley fever virus and other highly pathogenic RNA viruses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajini Mudhasani

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available High content image-based screening was developed as an approach to test a protease inhibitor small molecule library for antiviral activity against Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV and to determine their mechanism of action. RVFV is the causative agent of severe disease of humans and animals throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Of the 849 compounds screened, 34 compounds exhibited ≥ 50% inhibition against RVFV. All of the hit compounds could be classified into 4 distinct groups based on their unique chemical backbone. Some of the compounds also showed broad antiviral activity against several highly pathogenic RNA viruses including Ebola, Marburg, Venezuela equine encephalitis, and Lassa viruses. Four hit compounds (C795-0925, D011-2120, F694-1532 and G202-0362, which were most active against RVFV and showed broad-spectrum antiviral activity, were selected for further evaluation for their cytotoxicity, dose response profile, and mode of action using classical virological methods and high-content imaging analysis. Time-of-addition assays in RVFV infections suggested that D011-2120 and G202-0362 targeted virus egress, while C795-0925 and F694-1532 inhibited virus replication. We showed that D011-2120 exhibited its antiviral effects by blocking microtubule polymerization, thereby disrupting the Golgi complex and inhibiting viral trafficking to the plasma membrane during virus egress. While G202-0362 also affected virus egress, it appears to do so by a different mechanism, namely by blocking virus budding from the trans Golgi. F694-1532 inhibited viral replication, but also appeared to inhibit overall cellular gene expression. However, G202-0362 and C795-0925 did not alter any of the morphological features that we examined and thus may prove to be good candidates for antiviral drug development. Overall this work demonstrates that high-content image analysis can be used to screen chemical libraries for new antivirals and to determine their

  2. Assessment of synchronous neural activities revealed by regional homogeneity in individuals with acute eye pain: a resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tang L

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Li-Yuan Tang,1,* Hai-Jun Li,2,* Xin Huang,1 Jing Bao,1 Zubin Sethi,3 Lei Ye,1 Qing Yuan,1 Pei-Wen Zhu,1 Nan Jiang,1 Gui-Ping Gao,1 Yi Shao1 1Department of Ophthalmology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi, China; 2Department of Radiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi, China; 3The Department of Medicine, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL, USA *These authors contributed equally to this work Objective: Previous neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that pain-related diseases are associated with brain function and anatomical abnormalities, whereas altered synchronous neural activity in acute eye pain (EP patients has not been investigated. The purpose of this study was to explore whether or not synchronous neural activity changes were measured with the regional homogeneity (ReHo method in acute EP patients.Methods: A total of 20 patients (15 males and 5 females with EP and 20 healthy controls (HCs consisting of 15 and 5 age-, sex-, and education-matched males and females, respectively, underwent resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging. The ReHo method was applied to assess synchronous neural activity changes.Results: Compared with HCs, acute EP patients had significantly lower ReHo values in the left precentral/postcentral gyrus (Brodmann area [BA]3/4, right precentral/postcentral gyrus (BA3/4, and left middle frontal gyrus (BA6. In contrast, higher ReHo values in acute EP patients were observed in the left superior frontal gyrus (BA11, right inferior parietal lobule (BA39/40, and left precuneus (BA7. However, no relationship was found between the mean ReHo signal values of the different areas and clinical manifestations, which included both the duration and degree of pain in EP patients.Conclusion: Our study highlighted that acute EP patients showed altered synchronous neural activities in many brain regions, including somatosensory regions. These

  3. Proteomics reveal energy metabolism and mitogen-activated protein kinase signal transduction perturbation in human Borna disease virus Hu-H1-infected oligodendroglial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, X; Yang, Y; Zhao, M; Bode, L; Zhang, L; Pan, J; Lv, L; Zhan, Y; Liu, S; Zhang, L; Wang, X; Huang, R; Zhou, J; Xie, P

    2014-05-30

    Borna disease virus (BDV) is a neurotropic, non-cytolytic RNA virus which replicates in the cell nucleus targeting mainly hippocampal neurons, but also astroglial and oligodendroglial cells in the brain. BDV is associated with a large spectrum of neuropsychiatric pathologies in animals. Its relationship to human neuropsychiatric illness still remains controversial. We could recently demonstrate that human BDV strain Hu-H1 promoted apoptosis and inhibited cell proliferation in a human oligodendroglial cell line (OL cells) whereas laboratory BDV strain V acted contrariwise. Here, differential protein expression between BDV Hu-H1-infected OL cells and non-infected OL cells was assessed through a proteomics approach, using two-dimensional electrophoresis followed by matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight tandem mass spectrometry. A total of 63 differential host proteins were identified in BDV Hu-H1-infected OL cells compared to non-infected OL cells. We found that most changes referred to alterations related to the pentose phosphate pathway, glyoxylate and dicarboxylate metabolism, the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, and glycolysis /gluconeogenesis. By manual querying, two differential proteins were found to be associated with mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signal transduction. Five key signaling proteins of this pathway (i.e., p-Raf, p-MEK, p-ERK1/2, p-RSK, and p-MSK) were selected for Western blotting validation. p-ERK1/2 and p-RSK were found to be significantly up-regulated, and p-MSK was found to be significantly down-regulated in BDV Hu-H1-infected OL cells compared to non-infected OL cell. Although BDV Hu-H1 constitutively activated the ERK-RSK pathway, host cell proliferation and nuclear translocation of activated pERK in BDV Hu-H1-infected OL cells were impaired. These findings indicate that BDV Hu-H1 infection of human oligodendroglial cells significantly perturbs host energy metabolism, activates the downstream ERK-RSK complex of

  4. PCR-TTGE analysis of 16S rRNA from rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss gut microbiota reveals host-specific communities of active bacteria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola Navarrete

    Full Text Available This study assessed the relative contributions of host genetics and diet in shaping the gut microbiota of rainbow trout. Full sibling fish from four unrelated families, each consisting of individuals derived from the mating of one male and one female belonging to a breeding program, were fed diets containing either vegetable proteins or vegetable oils for two months in comparison to a control diet consisting of only fish protein and fish oil. Two parallel approaches were applied on the same samples: transcriptionally active bacterial populations were examined based on RNA analysis and were compared with bacterial populations obtained from DNA analysis. Comparison of temporal temperature gradient gel electrophoresis (TTGE profiles from DNA and RNA showed important differences, indicating that active bacterial populations were better described by RNA analysis. Results showed that some bacterial groups were significantly (P<0.05 associated with specific families, indicating that microbiota composition may be influenced by the host. In addition, the effect of diet on microbiota composition was dependent on the trout family.

  5. Structures of TorsinA and its disease-mutant complexed with an activator reveal the molecular basis for primary dystonia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Demircioglu, F. Esra; Sosa, Brian A.; Ingram, Jessica; Ploegh, Hidde L.; Schwartz, Thomas U.

    2016-08-04

    The most common cause of early onset primary dystonia, a neuromuscular disease, is a glutamate deletion (ΔE) at position 302/303 of TorsinA, a AAA+ ATPase that resides in the endoplasmic reticulum. While the function of TorsinA remains elusive, the ΔE mutation is known to diminish binding of two TorsinA ATPase activators: lamina-associated protein 1 (LAP1) and its paralog, luminal domain like LAP1 (LULL1). Using a nanobody as a crystallization chaperone, we obtained a 1.4 Å crystal structure of human TorsinA in complex with LULL1. This nanobody likewise stabilized the weakened TorsinAΔE-LULL1 interaction, which enabled us to solve its structure at 1.4 Å also. A comparison of these structures shows, in atomic detail, the subtle differences in activator interactions that separate the healthy from the diseased state. This information may provide a structural platform for drug development, as a small molecule that rescues TorsinAΔE could serve as a cure for primary dystonia.

  6. Multiplexed activity-based protein profiling of the human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus reveals large functional changes upon exposure to human serum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiedner, Susan D; Burnum, Kristin E; Pederson, LeeAnna M; Anderson, Lindsey N; Fortuin, Suereta; Chauvigné-Hines, Lacie M; Shukla, Anil K; Ansong, Charles; Panisko, Ellen A; Smith, Richard D; Wright, Aaron T

    2012-09-28

    Environmental adaptability is critical for survival of the fungal human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus in the immunocompromised host lung. We hypothesized that exposure of the fungal pathogen to human serum would lead to significant alterations to the organism's physiology, including metabolic activity and stress response. Shifts in functional pathway and corresponding enzyme reactivity of A. fumigatus upon exposure to the human host may represent much needed prognostic indicators of fungal infection. To address this, we employed a multiplexed activity-based protein profiling (ABPP) approach coupled to quantitative mass spectrometry-based proteomics to measure broad enzyme reactivity of the fungus cultured with and without human serum. ABPP showed a shift from aerobic respiration to ethanol fermentation and utilization over time in the presence of human serum, which was not observed in serum-free culture. Our approach provides direct insight into this pathogen's ability to survive, adapt, and proliferate. Additionally, our multiplexed ABPP approach captured a broad swath of enzyme reactivity and functional pathways and provides a method for rapid assessment of the A. fumigatus response to external stimuli.

  7. Multiplexed Activity-based Protein Profiling of the Human Pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus Reveals Large Functional Changes upon Exposure to Human Serum*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiedner, Susan D.; Burnum, Kristin E.; Pederson, LeeAnna M.; Anderson, Lindsey N.; Fortuin, Suereta; Chauvigné-Hines, Lacie M.; Shukla, Anil K.; Ansong, Charles; Panisko, Ellen A.; Smith, Richard D.; Wright, Aaron T.

    2012-01-01

    Environmental adaptability is critical for survival of the fungal human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus in the immunocompromised host lung. We hypothesized that exposure of the fungal pathogen to human serum would lead to significant alterations to the organism's physiology, including metabolic activity and stress response. Shifts in functional pathway and corresponding enzyme reactivity of A. fumigatus upon exposure to the human host may represent much needed prognostic indicators of fungal infection. To address this, we employed a multiplexed activity-based protein profiling (ABPP) approach coupled to quantitative mass spectrometry-based proteomics to measure broad enzyme reactivity of the fungus cultured with and without human serum. ABPP showed a shift from aerobic respiration to ethanol fermentation and utilization over time in the presence of human serum, which was not observed in serum-free culture. Our approach provides direct insight into this pathogen's ability to survive, adapt, and proliferate. Additionally, our multiplexed ABPP approach captured a broad swath of enzyme reactivity and functional pathways and provides a method for rapid assessment of the A. fumigatus response to external stimuli. PMID:22865858

  8. Mechanistic and Structural Studies of Protein-Only RNase P Compared to Ribonucleoproteins Reveal the Two Faces of the Same Enzymatic Activity

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    Cédric Schelcher

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available RNase P, the essential activity that performs the 5′ maturation of tRNA precursors, can be achieved either by ribonucleoproteins containing a ribozyme present in the three domains of life or by protein-only enzymes called protein-only RNase P (PRORP that occur in eukaryote nuclei and organelles. A fast growing list of studies has investigated three-dimensional structures and mode of action of PRORP proteins. Results suggest that similar to ribozymes, PRORP proteins have two main domains. A clear functional analogy can be drawn between the specificity domain of the RNase P ribozyme and PRORP pentatricopeptide repeat domain, and between the ribozyme catalytic domain and PRORP N4BP1, YacP-like Nuclease domain. Moreover, both types of enzymes appear to dock with the acceptor arm of tRNA precursors and make specific contacts with the corner of pre-tRNAs. While some clear differences can still be delineated between PRORP and ribonucleoprotein (RNP RNase P, the two types of enzymes seem to use, fundamentally, the same catalytic mechanism involving two metal ions. The occurrence of PRORP and RNP RNase P represents a remarkable example of convergent evolution. It might be the unique witness of an ongoing replacement of catalytic RNAs by proteins for enzymatic activities.

  9. Flow cytometry analysis reveals different activation profiles of thrombin- or TRAP-stimulated platelets in db/db mice. The regulatory role of PAR-3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassassir, Hassan; Siewiera, Karolina; Talar, Marcin; Przygodzki, Tomasz; Watala, Cezary

    2017-06-01

    Recent studies have shown that it may be the concentration of thrombin, which is discriminative in determining of the mechanism of platelet activation via protease activated receptors (PARs). Whether the observed phenomenon of differentiated responses of mouse platelets to various thrombin concentrations in non-diabetic db/+ and diabetic db/db mice depends upon the concerted action of various PARs, remains to be established. We found elevated reactivity of platelets, as well as the enhanced PAR-3 expression in response to both the used concentrations of AYPGKF in db/db mice, as compared to db/+ heterozygotes. At low concentration of thrombin platelets from diabetic mice demonstrated hyperreactivity, reflected by higher expression of PAR-3. For higher thrombin concentration, blood platelets from db/db mice appeared hyporeactive, compared to db/+ animals, while no significant differences in PAR-3 expression were observed between diabetic and non-diabetic mice. The novel and previously unreported finding resulting from our study is that the increased expression of PAR-3 in response to either TRAP for PAR-4 or low thrombin (when PAR-4 is not the efficient thrombin receptor) may be one of the key events contributing to higher reactivity of platelets in db/db mice. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Optogenetic Manipulation of Cyclic Di-GMP (c-di-GMP) Levels Reveals the Role of c-di-GMP in Regulating Aerotaxis Receptor Activity in Azospirillum brasilense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neal, Lindsey; Ryu, Min-Hyung; Gomelsky, Mark; Alexandre, Gladys

    2017-09-15

    Bacterial chemotaxis receptors provide the sensory inputs that inform the direction of navigation in changing environments. Recently, we described the bacterial second messenger cyclic di-GMP (c-di-GMP) as a novel regulator of a subclass of chemotaxis receptors. In Azospirillum brasilense , c-di-GMP binds to a chemotaxis receptor, Tlp1, and modulates its signaling function during aerotaxis. Here, we further characterize the role of c-di-GMP in aerotaxis using a novel dichromatic optogenetic system engineered for manipulating intracellular c-di-GMP levels in real time. This system comprises a red/near-infrared-light-regulated diguanylate cyclase and a blue-light-regulated c-di-GMP phosphodiesterase. It allows the generation of transient changes in intracellular c-di-GMP concentrations within seconds of irradiation with appropriate light, which is compatible with the time scale of chemotaxis signaling. We provide experimental evidence that binding of c-di-GMP to the Tlp1 receptor activates its signaling function during aerotaxis, which supports the role of transient changes in c-di-GMP levels as a means of adjusting the response of A. brasilense to oxygen gradients. We also show that intracellular c-di-GMP levels in A. brasilense change with carbon metabolism. Our data support a model whereby c-di-GMP functions to imprint chemotaxis receptors with a record of recent metabolic experience, to adjust their contribution to the signaling output, thus allowing the cells to continually fine-tune chemotaxis sensory perception to their metabolic state. IMPORTANCE Motile bacteria use chemotaxis to change swimming direction in response to changes in environmental conditions. Chemotaxis receptors sense environmental signals and relay sensory information to the chemotaxis machinery, which ultimately controls the swimming pattern of cells. In bacteria studied to date, differential methylation has been known as a mechanism to control the activity of chemotaxis receptors and

  11. An Integrative Analysis Reveals a Central Role of P53 Activation via MDM2 in Zika Virus Infection Induced Cell Death

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    Yue Teng

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Zika virus (ZIKV infection is an emerging global threat that is suspected to be associated with fetal microcephaly. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying ZIKV disease pathogenesis in humans remain elusive. Here, we investigated the human protein interaction network associated with ZIKV infection using a systemic virology approach, and reconstructed the transcriptional regulatory network to analyze the mechanisms underlying ZIKV-elicited microcephaly pathogenesis. The bioinformatics findings in this study show that P53 is the hub of the genetic regulatory network for ZIKV-related and microcephaly-associated proteins. Importantly, these results imply that the ZIKV capsid protein interacts with mouse double-minute-2 homolog (MDM2, which is involved in the P53-mediated apoptosis pathway, activating the death of infected neural cells. We also found that synthetic mimics of the ZIKV capsid protein induced cell death in vitro and in vivo. This study provides important insight into the relationship between ZIKV infection and brain diseases.

  12. Complete identification of E-selectin ligand activity on neutrophils reveals a dynamic interplay and distinct functions of PSGL-1, ESL-1 and CD44

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wild, Martin; Vestweber, Dietmar; Frenette, Paul S.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY The selectins and their ligands are required for leukocyte extravasation during inflammation. Several glycoproteins have been suggested to bind to E-selectin in vitro but the complete identification of its physiological ligands has remained elusive. Here, we show using gene- and RNA-targeted loss-of-function that E-selectin ligand-1 (ESL-1), PSGL-1 and CD44 encompass all endothelial selectin ligand activity on neutrophils. PSGL-1 plays a major role in the initial leukocyte capture, while ESL-1 is critical to convert initial tethers into steady slow rolling. CD44 controls rolling velocity and mediates E-selectin-dependent redistribution of PSGL-1 and L-selectin to a major pole on slowly rolling leukocytes through p38 signaling. These results suggest distinct and dynamic contributions of these three glycoproteins in selectin-mediated neutrophil adhesion and signaling. PMID:17442598

  13. Forster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) Analysis of Dual CFP/YFP Labeled AMPA Receptors Reveals Structural Rearrangement within the C-Terminal Domain during Receptor Activation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zachariassen, Linda Grønborg; Katchan, Mila; Plested, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    that retain function and display intrareceptor FRET. This includes a construct (GluA2-6Y-10C) containing YFP in the intracellular loop between the M1 and M2 membrane-embedded segments and CFP inserted in the C-ter- minal domain (CTD). GluA2-6Y-10C displays FRET with an efficiency of 0.11 while retaining wild......-type receptor expression and kinetic properties. We have used GluA2-6Y-10C to study conformational changes in homomeric GluA2 receptors during receptor activation. Our results show that the FRET efficiency is dependent on functional state of GluA2-6Y-10C and hereby indi- cates that the intracellular CTD...

  14. Diverse Eruptive Activity Revealed by Acoustic and Electromagnetic Observations of the 14 July 2013 Intense Vulcanian Eruption of Tungurahua Volcano, Ecuador

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, J. F.; Johnson, J. B.; Steele, A. L.; Ruiz, M. C.; Brand, B. D.

    2018-04-01

    During the powerful July 2013 eruption of Tungurahua volcano, Ecuador, we recorded exceptionally high amplitude, long-period infrasound (1,600-Pa peak-to-peak amplitude, 5.5-s period) on sensors within 2 km of the vent alongside electromagnetic signals from volcanic lightning serendipitously captured as interference. This explosion was one of Tungurahua's most powerful vulcanian eruptions since recent activity began in 1999, and its acoustic wave is among the most powerful volcanic infrasound ever recorded anywhere. We use these data to quantify erupted volume from the main explosion and to classify postexplosive degassing into distinct emission styles. Additionally, we demonstrate a highly effective method of recording lightning-related electromagnetic signals alongside infrasound. Detailed chronologies of powerful vulcanian eruptions are rare; this study demonstrates that diverse eruptive processes can occur in such eruptions and that near-vent infrasound and electromagnetic data can elucidate them.

  15. Structure of Mycobacterium tuberculosis phosphopantetheine adenylyltransferase in complex with the feedback inhibitor CoA reveals only one active-site conformation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wubben, T.; Mesecar, A.D. (Purdue); (UIC)

    2014-10-02

    Phosphopantetheine adenylyltransferase (PPAT) catalyzes the penultimate step in the coenzyme A (CoA) biosynthetic pathway, reversibly transferring an adenylyl group from ATP to 4'-phosphopantetheine to form dephosphocoenzyme A (dPCoA). To complement recent biochemical and structural studies on Mycobacterium tuberculosis PPAT (MtPPAT) and to provide further insight into the feedback regulation of MtPPAT by CoA, the X-ray crystal structure of the MtPPAT enzyme in complex with CoA was determined to 2.11 {angstrom} resolution. Unlike previous X-ray crystal structures of PPAT-CoA complexes from other bacteria, which showed two distinct CoA conformations bound to the active site, only one conformation of CoA is observed in the MtPPAT-CoA complex.

  16. Theoretical calculation of pKa reveals an important role of Arg205 in the activity and stability of Streptomyces sp. N174 chitosanase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukamizo, T; Juffer, A H; Vogel, H J; Honda, Y; Tremblay, H; Boucher, I; Neugebauer, W A; Brzezinski, R

    2000-08-18

    Based on the crystal structure of chitosanase from Streptomyces sp. N174, we have calculated theoretical pK(a) values of the ionizable groups of this protein using a combination of the boundary element method and continuum electrostatics. The pK(a) value obtained for Arg(205), which is located in the catalytic cleft, was abnormally high (>20.0), indicating that the guanidyl group may interact strongly with nearby charges. Chitosanases possessing mutations in this position (R205A, R205H, and R205Y), produced by Streptomyces lividans expression system, were found to have less than 0.3% of the activity of the wild type enzyme and to possess thermal stabilities 4-5 kcal/mol lower than that of the wild type protein. In the crystal structure, the Arg(205) side chain is in close proximity to the Asp(145) side chain (theoretical pK(a), -1.6), which is in turn close to the Arg(190) side chain (theoretical pK(a), 17.7). These theoretical pK(a) values are abnormal, suggesting that both of these residues may participate in the Arg(205) interaction network. Activity and stability experiments using Asp(145)- and Arg(190)-mutated chitosanases (D145A and R190A) provide experimental data supporting the hypothesis derived from the theoretical pK(a) data and prompt the conclusion that Arg(205) forms a strong interaction network with Asp(145) and Arg(190) that stabilizes the catalytic cleft.

  17. Immune gene expression profiling of Proliferative Kidney Disease in rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss reveals a dominance of anti-inflammatory, antibody and T helper cell-like activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorgoglione, Bartolomeo; Wang, Tiehui; Secombes, Christopher J; Holland, Jason W

    2013-07-16

    The myxozoan Tetracapsuloides bryosalmonae is the causative agent of Proliferative Kidney Disease (PKD) targeting primarily the kidney of infected fish where it causes a chronic lymphoid immunopathology. Although known to be associated with suppression of some cellular aspects of innate immunity and a prominent lymphocytic hyperplasia, there remains a considerable knowledge gap in our understanding of the underlying immune mechanisms driving PKD pathogenesis. To provide further insights, the expression profiles of a panel of innate/inflammatory and adaptive immune molecules were examined in rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss following a natural exposure to the parasite. Relative to controls, fish with early to advanced stages of kidney pathology exhibited up-regulation of the inflammatory cytokines interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-11, although remaining refractory towards genes indicative of macrophage activity. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and anti-inflammatory markers, including cathelicidin (CATH) and IL-10 were markedly up-regulated during clinical disease. Up-regulation of adaptive immune molecules, including cell markers and antibody genes reflect the lymphocytic dominance of this disease and the likely importance of lymphocyte subsets in PKD pathogenesis. Up-regulation of T helper (TH) cell-like response genes and transcription factors implies that T. bryosalmonae may elicit a complex interplay between TH cell subsets. This work, for the first time in the study of fish-myxozoan interactions, suggests that PKD pathogenesis is shaped by an anti-inflammatory phenotype, a profound B cell/antibody response and dysregulated TH cell-like activities. A better understanding of the functional roles of fish immune cells and molecules in PKD pathogenesis may facilitate future development of control measures against this disease.

  18. Genome-wide analysis of short interspersed nuclear elements SINES revealed high sequence conservation, gene association and retrotranspositional activity in wheat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben-David, Smadar; Yaakov, Beery; Kashkush, Khalil

    2013-10-01

    Short interspersed nuclear elements (SINEs) are non-autonomous non-LTR retroelements that are present in most eukaryotic species. While SINEs have been intensively investigated in humans and other animal systems, they are poorly studied in plants, especially in wheat (Triticum aestivum). We used quantitative PCR of various wheat species to determine the copy number of a wheat SINE family, termed Au SINE, combined with computer-assisted analyses of the publicly available 454 pyrosequencing database of T. aestivum. In addition, we utilized site-specific PCR on 57 Au SINE insertions, transposon methylation display and transposon display on newly formed wheat polyploids to assess retrotranspositional activity, epigenetic status and genetic rearrangements in Au SINE, respectively. We retrieved 3706 different insertions of Au SINE from the 454 pyrosequencing database of T. aestivum, and found that most of the elements are inserted in A/T-rich regions, while approximately 38% of the insertions are associated with transcribed regions, including known wheat genes. We observed typical retrotransposition of Au SINE in the second generation of a newly formed wheat allohexaploid, and massive hypermethylation in CCGG sites surrounding Au SINE in the third generation. Finally, we observed huge differences in the copy numbers in diploid Triticum and Aegilops species, and a significant increase in the copy numbers in natural wheat polyploids, but no significant increase in the copy number of Au SINE in the first four generations for two of three newly formed allopolyploid species used in this study. Our data indicate that SINEs may play a prominent role in the genomic evolution of wheat through stress-induced activation. © 2013 Ben-Gurion University The Plant Journal © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Long-Term Recordings of Arcuate Nucleus Kisspeptin Neurons Reveal Patterned Activity That Is Modulated by Gonadal Steroids in Male Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanacker, Charlotte; Moya, Manuel Ricu; DeFazio, R Anthony; Johnson, Michael L; Moenter, Suzanne M

    2017-10-01

    Pulsatile release of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is key to fertility. Pulse frequency is modulated by gonadal steroids and likely arises subsequent to coordination of GnRH neuron firing activity. The source of rhythm generation and the site of steroid feedback remain critical unanswered questions. Arcuate neurons that synthesize kisspeptin, neurokinin B, and dynorphin (KNDy) may be involved in both of these processes. We tested the hypotheses that action potential firing in KNDy neurons is episodic and that gonadal steroids regulate this pattern. Targeted extracellular recordings were made of green fluorescent protein-identified KNDy neurons in brain slices from adult male mice that were