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Human embryonic stem (ES) cells and embryonic germ (EG) cells are pluripotent and are invaluable material for in vitro studies of human embryogenesis and cell therapy. So far, only two groups have reported the establishment of human EG cell lines, whereas at least five human ES cell lines have been established. To see if human EG cell lines can be reproducibly estab-lished, we isolated primordial germ cells (PGCs) from gonadal ridges and mesenteries (9 weeks post-fertilization) and cultured them on mouse STO cells. As with mouse ES colonies, the PGC-derived cells have given rise to multilayered colonies without any differ-entiation over a year of continuous culture. They are karyotypically normal and express high levels of alka-line phosphatase, Oct-4, and several cell-surface mark-ers. Histological and immunocytochemical analysis of embryoid bodies (EBs) formed from floating cultures of the PGC-derived cell colonies revealed ectodermal, endodermal, and mesodermal tissues. When the EBs were cultured in the presence of insulin, transferrin, sodium selenite, and fibronectin for 1 week, markers of primitive neuroectoderm were expressed in cells within the EBs as well as in cells growing out from the EBs. These observations indicate that our PGC-derived cells satisfy the criteria for pluripotent stem cells and hence may be EG cells.
Cell migration requires a defined cell polarity which is formed by diverse cytoskeletal components differentially localized to the poles of cells to extracellular signals. RapGAP3 transiently and rapidly translocates to the cell cortex in response to chemoattractant stimulation and localizes to the leading edge of migrating cells. Here, we examined localization of truncated RapGAP3 proteins and found that the I/LWEQ domain in the central region of RapGAP3 was sufficient for posterior localization in migrating cells, as opposed to leading-edge localization of full-length RapGAP3. All truncated proteins accumulated at the leading edge of migrating cells exhibited clear translocation to the cell cortex in response to stimulation, whereas proteins localized to the posterior in migrating cells displayed no translocation to the cortex. The I/LWEQ domain appears to passively accumulate at the posterior region in migrating cells due to exclusion from the extended front region in response to chemoattractant stimulation rather than actively being localized to the back of cells. Our results suggest that posterior localization of the I/LWEQ domain of RapGAP3 is likely related to F-actin, which has probably different properties compared to newly formed F-actin at the leading edge of migrating cells, at the lateral and post-erior regions of the cell.
Tristetraprolin (TTP) is an AU-rich elements (AREs)- binding protein, which regulates the decay of AREscontaining mRNAs such as proto-oncogenes, antiapoptotic genes and immune regulatory genes. Despite the low expression of TTP in various human cancers, the mechanism involving suppressed expression of TTP is not fully understood. Here, we demonstrate that Resveratrol (3,5,4′-trihydroxystilbene, Res), a naturally occurring compound, induces glioma cell apoptosis through activation of tristetraprolin (TTP). Res increased TTP expression in U87MG human glioma cells. Res-induced TTP destabilized the urokinase plasminogen activator and urokinase plasminogen activator receptor mRNAs by binding to the ARE regions containing the 3′ untranslated regions of their mRNAs. Furthermore, TTP induced by Res suppressed cell growth and induced apoptosis in the human glioma cells. Because of its regulation of TTP expression, these findings suggest that the bioactive dietary compound Res can be used as a novel anti-cancer agent for the treatment of human malignant gliomas.
Exposure of the skin to ultraviolet radiation can cause skin damage with various pathological changes including inflammation. In the present study, we identified the skinprotective activity of 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-β-D-glucose (pentagalloyl glucose, PGG) in ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation- induced human dermal fibroblasts and mouse skin. PGG exhibited antioxidant activity with regard to intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation as well as ROS and reactive nitrogen species (RNS) scavenging. Furthermore, PGG exhibited anti-inflammatory activity, inhibiting the activation of nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-κB) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling, resulting in inhibition of the expression of pro-inflammatory mediators. Topical application of PGG followed by chronic exposure to UVB radiation in the dorsal skin of hairless mice resulted in a significant decrease in the progression of inflammatory skin damages, leading to inhibited activation of NF-κB signaling and expression of pro-inflammatory mediators. The present study demonstrated that PGG protected from skin damage induced by UVB radiation, and thus, may be a potential candidate1forthe prevention of environmental stimuli-induced inflammatory skin damage.
EphA7 is a key molecule in regulating the development of the dien- and mesencephalon. To get insight into the mechanism of how EphA7 gene expression is regulated during the dorsal specification of the dien- and mesencephalon, we investigated the cis-acting regulatory sequence driving EphA7 to the dorsal midline of the dien- and mesencephalon. Transgenic LacZ reporter analysis, using overlapping EphA7 BACs, was used to narrow down the dorsal midline-specific enhancer, revealing the 25.3 kb genomic region as the enhancer candidate. Strikingly, this genomic DNA was located far downstream of the EphA7 transcription start site, +302.6 kb to +327.9 kb. Further enhancer mapping, using comparative genomic analysis and transgenic methods, showed that the 187 bp genomic DNA alone, approximately 305 kb downstream of the EphA7 transcription start site, was sufficient to act as the dorsal midline-specific enhancer of EphA7. Importantly, our results indicate that the 187 bp dorsal midline-specific enhancer is critically regulated by homeobox transcription factors during the development of the dien- and mesencephalon.
Precise 3D spatial mapping of cells and their connections within living tissues is required to fully understand developmental processes and neural activities. Zebrafish embryos are relatively small and optically transparent, making them the vertebrate model of choice for live in vivo imaging. However, embryonic brains cannot be imaged in their entirety by confocal or two-photon microscopy due to limitations in optical range and scanning speed. Here, we use light-sheet fluorescence microscopy to overcome these limitations and image the entire head of live transgenic zebrafish embryos. We simultaneously imaged cranial neurons and blood vessels during embryogenesis, generating comprehensive 3D maps that provide insight into the coordinated morphogenesis of the nervous system and vasculature during early development. In addition, blood cells circulating through the entire head, vagal and cardiac vasculature were also visualized at high resolution in a 3D movie. These data provide the foundation for the construction of a complete 4D atlas of zebrafish embryogenesis and neural activity.
188.8.131.52) is highly expressed and plays a critical role in the development of dendrites in brain neurons. In this study, the authors conducted structure-function analysis to verify the previously proposed 3D model structure of GlcNAc/ ATP-bound NAGK. Three point NAGK mutants with different substrate binding capacities and reaction velocities were produced. Wild-type (WT) NAGK showed strong substrate preference for GlcNAc. Conversion of Cys143, which does not make direct hydrogen bonds with GlcNAc, to Ser (i.e., C143S) had the least affect on the enzymatic activity of NAGK. Conversion of Asn36, which plays a role in domain closure by making a hydrogen bond with GlcNAc, to Ala (i.e., N36A) mildly reduced NAGK enzyme activity. Conversion of Asp107, which makes hydrogen bonds with GlcNAc and would act as a proton acceptor during nucleophilic attack on the γ-phosphate of ATP, to Ala (i.e., D107A), caused a total loss in enzyme activity. The overexpression of EGFP-tagged WT or any of the mutant NAGKs in rat hippocampal neurons (DIV 5-9) increased dendritic architectural complexity. Finally, the overexpression of the small, but not of the large, domain of NAGK resulted in dendrite degeneration. Our data show the effect of structure on the functional aspects of NAGK, and in particular, that the small domain of NAGK, and not its NAGK kinase activity, plays a critical role in the upregulation of dendritogenesis.
CDK2 is a key regulator of cell cycle progression. In this study, we screened for miRNAs targeting CDK2 using a luciferase-3-untranslated region reporter assay. Among 11 hit miRNAs, miR-509-3p reduced CDK2 protein levels and significantly inhibited cancer cell growth. Microarray, Western blotting, and luciferase reporter analyses revealed additional targets of miR-509-3p, including Rac1 and PIK3C2A. Overex-pression of miR-509-3p induced G1 cell-cycle arrest and inhibited colony formation and migration. RNAi experiments indicated that the growth-inhibitory effects of miR-509-3p may occur through down-regulation of CDK2, Rac1, and PIK3C2A. Targeting of multiple growth regulatory genes by miR-509-3p may contribute to effective anti-cancer therapy.
Mitigating secondary delayed neuronal injury has been a therapeutic strategy for minimizing neurological symptoms after several types of brain injury. Interestingly, secondary neuronal loss appeared to be closely related to functional loss and/or death of astrocytes. In the brain damage induced by agonists of two glutamate receptors, N-ethyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) and kainic acid (KA), NMDA induced neuronal death within 3 h, but did not increase further thereafter. However, in the KA-injected brain, neuronal death was not obviously detectable even at injection sites at 3 h, but extensively increased to encompass the entire hemisphere at 7 days. Brain inflammation, a possible cause of secondary neuronal damage, showed little differences between the two models. Importantly, however, astrocyte behavior was completely different. In the NMDA-injected cortex, the loss of glial fibrillary acidic protein-expressing (GFAP+) astrocytes was confined to the injection site until 7 days after the injection, and astrocytes around the damage sites showed extensive gliosis and appeared to isolate the damage sites. In contrast, in the KA-injected brain, GFAP+ astrocytes, like neurons, slowly, but progressively, disappeared across the entire hemisphere. Other markers of astrocytes, including S100β, glutamate transporter EAAT2, the potassium channel Kir4.1 and glutamine synthase, showed patterns similar to that of GFAP in both NMDA- and KA-injected cortexes. More importantly, astrocyte disappearance and/or functional loss preceded neuronal death in the KA-injected brain. Taken together, these results suggest that loss of astrocyte support to neurons may be a critical cause of delayed neuronal death in the injured brain.
Autophagy targets cytoplasmic cargo to a lytic compartment for degradation. Autophagy-related (Atg) proteins, including the transmembrane protein Atg9, are involved in different steps of autophagy in yeast and mammalian cells. Functional classification of core Atg proteins in plants has not been clearly confirmed, partly because of the limited availability of reliable assays for monitoring autophagic flux. By using proUBQ10-GFP-ATG8a as an autophagic marker, we showed that autophagic flux is reduced but not completely compromised in Arabidopsis thaliana atg9 mutants. In contrast, we confirmed full inhibition of autophagic flux in atg7 and that the difference in autophagy was consistent with the differences in mutant phenotypes such as hypersensitivity to nutrient stress and selective autophagy. Autophagic flux is also reduced by an inhibitor of phosphatidylinositol kinase. Our data indicated that atg9 is phenotypically distinct from atg7 and atg2 in Arabidopsis, and we proposed that ATG9 and phosphatidylinositol kinase activity contribute to efficient autophagy in Arabidopsis.