Journal International Journal of Molecular Sciences-
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205224
Abstract:GreA is a well-characterized transcriptional factor that acts primarily by rescuing stalled RNA polymerase complexes, but has also been shown to be the major transcriptional fidelity and proofreading factor, while it inhibits DNA break repair. Regulation of greA gene expression itself is still not well understood. So far, it has been shown that its expression is driven by two overlapping promoters and that greA leader encodes a small RNA (GraL) that is acting in trans on nudE mRNA. It has been also shown that GreA autoinhibits its own expression in vivo. Here, we decided to investigate the inner workings of this autoregulatory loop. Transcriptional fusions with lacZ reporter carrying different modifications (made both to the greA promoter and leader regions) were made to pinpoint the sequences responsible for this autoregulation, while GraL levels were also monitored. Our data indicate that GreA mediated regulation of its own gene expression is dependent on GraL acting in cis (a rare example of dual-action sRNA), rather than on the promoter region. However, a yet unidentified, additional factor seems to participate in this regulation as well. Overall, the GreA/GraL regulatory loop seems to have unique but hard to classify properties.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205225
Abstract:Copper is an essential trace element within cells, but it also exerts cytotoxic effects through induction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. To determine the mechanisms underlying copper-induced ROS production, we examined the effects of copper sulfate in HeLa cells. Exposure to copper sulfate led to dose-dependent decreases in HeLa cell viability, along with increases in the subG1 and G2/M populations and corresponding decreases in the G1 population. Copper sulfate also increased the levels of apoptosis, senescence, mitochondrial dysfunction, autophagy, ROS, and the expression of several stress proteins, including ATF3, c-Fos, DEC1 (differentiated embryonic chondrocyte gene 1), p21, p53, and HIF-1α (hypoxia-inducible factor 1 alpha). The suppression of copper-induced ROS generation by the ROS scavenger N-acetyl cysteine verified copper’s functional role, while the suppression of copper’s effects by the copper chelator disulfiram, confirmed its specificity. Selective induction of HIF-1α, p53, and phosphorylated ERK proteins by copper was blocked by the knockdown of the transcription factor DEC1, suggesting copper’s effects are mediated by DEC1. In addition to HeLa cells, copper also exerted cytotoxic effects in human endometrial (HEC-1-A) and lung (A549) adenocarcinoma cells, but not in normal human kidney (HEK293) or bronchial (Beas-2B) epithelial cells. These findings shed new light on the functional roles of copper within cells.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205226
Abstract:Interleukin (IL)-33 is a chromatin-related nuclear interleukin that is a component of IL-1 family. IL-33 production augments the course of inflammation after cell damage or death. It is discharged into the extracellular space. IL-33 is regarded as an “alarmin” able to stimulate several effectors of the immune system, regulating numerous immune responses comprising cancer immune reactions. IL-33 has been demonstrated to influence tumorigenesis. However, as far as this cytokine is concerned, we are faced with what has sometimes been defined as the IL-33 paradox. Several studies have demonstrated a relevant role of IL-33 to numerous malignancies, where it may have pro- and—less frequently—antitumorigenic actions. In the field of hematological malignancies, the role of IL-33 seems even more complex. Although we can affirm the existence of a negative role of IL-33 in Chronic myelogenos leukemia (CML) and in lymphoproliferative diseases and a positive role in pathologies such as Acute myeloid leukemia (AML), the action of IL-33 seems to be multiple and sometimes contradictory within the same pathology. In the future, we will have to learn to govern the negative aspects of activating the IL-33/ST2 axis and exploit the positive ones.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205227
Abstract:The blood-brain barrier (BBB), composed of brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMEC) that are tightly linked by tight junction (TJ) proteins, restricts the movement of molecules between the periphery and the central nervous system. Elevated systemic levels of neutrophils have been detected in patients with altered BBB function, but the role of neutrophils in BMEC dysfunction is unknown. Neutrophils are key players of the immune response and, when activated, produce neutrophil-derived microvesicles (NMV). NMV have been shown to impact the integrity of endothelial cells throughout the body and we hypothesize that NMV released from circulating neutrophils interact with BMEC and induce endothelial cell dysfunction. Therefore, the current study investigated the interaction of NMV with human BMEC and determined whether they altered gene expression and function in vitro. Using flow cytometry and confocal imaging, NMV were shown to be internalized by the human cerebral microvascular endothelial cell line hCMEC/D3 via a variety of energy-dependent mechanisms, including endocytosis and macropinocytosis. The internalization of NMV significantly altered the transcriptomic profile of hCMEC/D3, specifically inducing the dysregulation of genes associated with TJ, ubiquitin-mediated proteolysis and vesicular transport. Functional studies confirmed NMV significantly increased permeability and decreased the transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) of a confluent monolayer of hCMEC/D3. These findings indicate that NMV interact with and affect gene expression of BMEC as well as impacting their integrity. We conclude that NMV may play an important role in modulating the permeability of BBB during an infection.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205229
Abstract:Enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP)—one of the most widely applied genetically encoded fluorescent probes—carries the threonine-tyrosine-glycine (TYG) chromophore. EGFP efficiently undergoes green-to-red oxidative photoconversion (“redding”) with electron acceptors. Enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (EYFP), a close EGFP homologue (five amino acid substitutions), has a glycine-tyrosine-glycine (GYG) chromophore and is much less susceptible to redding, requiring halide ions in addition to the oxidants. In this contribution we aim to clarify the role of the first chromophore-forming amino acid in photoinduced behavior of these fluorescent proteins. To that end, we compared photobleaching and redding kinetics of EGFP, EYFP, and their mutants with reciprocally substituted chromophore residues, EGFP-T65G and EYFP-G65T. Measurements showed that T65G mutation significantly increases EGFP photostability and inhibits its excited-state oxidation efficiency. Remarkably, while EYFP-G65T demonstrated highly increased spectral sensitivity to chloride, it is also able to undergo redding chloride-independently. Atomistic calculations reveal that the GYG chromophore has an increased flexibility, which facilitates radiationless relaxation leading to the reduced fluorescence quantum yield in the T65G mutant. The GYG chromophore also has larger oscillator strength as compared to TYG, which leads to a shorter radiative lifetime (i.e., a faster rate of fluorescence). The faster fluorescence rate partially compensates for the loss of quantum efficiency due to radiationless relaxation. The shorter excited-state lifetime of the GYG chromophore is responsible for its increased photostability and resistance to redding. In EYFP and EYFP-G65T, the chromophore is stabilized by π-stacking with Tyr203, which suppresses its twisting motions relative to EGFP.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205228
Abstract:The R2R3 MYB genes associated with the flavonoid/anthocyanidin pathway feature two repeats, and represent the most abundant classes of MYB genes in plants; however, the physiological role and regulatory function of most R2R3 MYBs remain poorly understood in kiwifruit (Actinidia). Here, genome-wide analysis identified 155 R2R3-MYBs in the ‘Red 5′ version of the Actinidia chinensis genome. Out of 36 anthocyanin-related AccR2R3-MYBs, AcMYB10 was the most highly expressed in inner pericarp of red-fleshed kiwifruit. The expression of AcMYB10 was highly correlated with anthocyanin accumulation in natural pigmentation during fruit ripening and light-/temperature-induced pigmentation in the callus. AcMYB10 is localized in the nuclei and has transcriptional activation activity. Overexpression of AcMYB10 elevates anthocyanin accumulation in transgenic A. chinensis. In comparison, A. chinensis fruit infiltrated with virus-induced gene silencing showed delayed red coloration, lower anthocyanin content, and lower expression of AcMYB10. The transient expression experiment in Nicotiana tabacum leaves and Actinidia arguta fruit indicated the interaction of AcMYB10 with AcbHLH42 might strongly activate anthocyanin biosynthesis by activating the transcription of AcLDOX and AcF3GT. In conclusion, this study provides novel molecular information about R2R3-MYBs in kiwifruit, advances our understanding of light- and temperature-induced anthocyanin accumulation, and demonstrates the important function of AcMYB10 in the biosynthesis of anthocyanin in kiwifruit.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205230
Abstract:Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is often transmitted through saliva. The salivary gland is a site of CMV replication and saliva can be used to diagnose congenital CMV infections. CMV replication is monitored in whole blood or plasma in renal transplant recipients (RTR) and associates with clinical disease. However, these assays may not detect replication in the salivary gland and there is little data linking detection in saliva with systemic infection and clinical sequelae. RTR (n = 82) were recruited > 2 years after transplantation. An in-house quantitative PCR assay was used to detect CMV UL54 in saliva samples. CMV DNA was sought in plasma using a commercial assay. Vascular health was predicted using flow mediated dilatation (FMD) and plasma biomarkers. CMV-reactive antibodies were quantified by ELISA and circulating CMV-specific T-cells by an interferon-γ ELISpot assay. Vδ2− γδ T-cells were detected using multicolor flow cytometry reflecting population expansion after CMV infection. The presence of CMV DNA in saliva and plasma associated with plasma levels of antibodies reactive with CMV gB and with populations of circulating Vδ2− γδ T -cells (p < 0.01). T-cells reactive to CMV immediate early (IE)-1 protein were generally lower in patients with CMV DNA in saliva or plasma, but the level of significance varied (p = 0.02–0.16). Additionally, CMV DNA in saliva or plasma associated weakly with impaired FMD (p = 0.06–0.09). The data suggest that CMV detected in saliva reflects systemic infections in adult RTR.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205232
Abstract:The scientific literature has demonstrated that glutamine is one of the main beneficial amino acids. It plays an important role in gut microbiota and immunity. This paper provides a critical overview of experimental studies (in vitro, in vivo, and clinical) investigating the efficacy of glutamine and its effect on gut microbiota. As a result of this review, we have summarized that glutamine could affect gut microbiota via different mechanisms including the reduction in the ratio of Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes, with the activation of NF-κB and PI3K-Akt pathways, reducing the intestinal colonization (Eimeria lesions) and bacterial overgrowth or bacterial translocation, increasing the production of secretory immunoglobulin A (SIgA) and immunoglobulin A+ (IgA+) cells in the intestinal lumen, and decreasing asparagine levels. The potential applications of glutamine on gut microbiota include, but are not limited to, the management of obesity, bacterial translocation and community, cytokines profiles, and the management of side effects during post-chemotherapy and constipation periods. Further studies and reviews are needed regarding the effects of glutamine supplementation on other conditions in humans.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205231
Abstract:The importance of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) in the regulation of multiple physiological functions has been clearly recognized in the over 20 years since it was first identified as a novel gasotransmitter. In bone tissue H2S exerts a cytoprotective effect and promotes bone formation. Just recently, the scientific community has begun to appreciate its role as a therapeutic agent in bone pathologies. Pharmacological administration of H2S achieved encouraging results in preclinical studies in the treatment of systemic bone diseases, such as osteoporosis; however, a local delivery of H2S at sites of bone damage may provide additional opportunities of treatment. Here, we highlight how H2S stimulates multiple signaling pathways involved in various stages of the processes of bone repair. Moreover, we discuss how material science and chemistry have recently developed biomaterials and H2S-donors with improved features, laying the ground for the development of H2S-releasing devices for bone regenerative medicine. This review is intended to give a state-of-the-art description of the pro-regenerative properties of H2S, with a focus on bone tissue, and to discuss the potential of H2S-releasing scaffolds as a support for bone repair.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, Volume 20; doi:10.3390/ijms20205233
Abstract:Heat shock transcription factors (Hsfs) are a class of important transcription factors (TFs) which play crucial roles in the protection of plants from damages caused by various abiotic stresses. The present study aimed to characterize the Hsf genes in carnation (Dianthus caryophyllus), which is one of the four largest cut flowers worldwide. In this study, a total of 17 non-redundant Hsf genes were identified from the D. caryophyllus genome. Specifically, the gene structure and motifs of each DcaHsf were comprehensively analyzed. Phylogenetic analysis of the DcaHsf family distinctly separated nine class A, seven class B, and one class C Hsf genes. Additionally, promoter analysis indicated that the DcaHsf promoters included various cis-acting elements that were related to stress, hormones, as well as development processes. In addition, cis-elements, such as STRE, MYB, and ABRE binding sites, were identified in the promoters of most DcaHsf genes. According to qRT-PCR data, the expression of DcaHsfs varied in eight tissues and six flowering stages and among different DcaHsfs, even in the same class. Moreover, DcaHsf-A1, A2a, A9a, B2a, B3a revealed their putative involvement in the early flowering stages. The time-course expression profile of DcaHsf during stress responses illustrated that all the DcaHsfs were heat- and drought-responsive, and almost all DcaHsfs were down-regulated by cold, salt, and abscisic acid (ABA) stress. Meanwhile, DcaHsf-A3, A7, A9a, A9b, B3a were primarily up-regulated at an early stage in response to salicylic acid (SA). This study provides an overview of the Hsf gene family in D. caryophyllus and a basis for the breeding of stress-resistant carnation.