ResearchPad - cell-cultures https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Patient-derived oral mucosa organoids as an <i>in vitro</i> model for methotrexate induced toxicity in pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_15720 We have recently established a protocol to grow wildtype human oral mucosa organoids. These three-dimensional structures can be maintained in culture long-term, do not require immortalization, and recapitulate the multilayered composition of the epithelial lining of the oral mucosa. Here, we validate the use of this model to study the effect of Leucovorin (LV) on Methotrexate (MTX)-induced toxicity. MTX is a chemotherapeutic agent used in the treatment of pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Although effective, the use of MTX often results in severe side-effects, including oral mucositis, which is characterized by epithelial cell death. Here, we show that organoids are sensitive to MTX, and that the addition of LV reduces MTX toxicity, in both a concentration- and timing-dependent manner. Additionally, we show that a 24 hour ‘pretreatment’ with LV reduces MTX-induced cell death, suggesting that such a pretreatment could decrease mucositis in patients. Taken together, we provide the first in vitro model to study the effect of MTX on wildtype oral mucosa cells. Our findings underscore the relevance of the clinically applied LV regimen and highlight the potential of this model to further optimize modifications in dosing and timing of Leucovorin on oral mucosa cells.

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<![CDATA[Odiparcil, a potential glycosaminoglycans clearance therapy in mucopolysaccharidosis VI—Evidence from <i>in vitro</i> and <i>in vivo</i> models]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14726 Mucopolysaccharidoses are a class of lysosomal storage diseases, characterized by enzymatic deficiency in the degradation of specific glycosaminoglycans (GAG). Pathological accumulation of excess GAG leads to multiple clinical symptoms with systemic character, most severely affecting bones, muscles and connective tissues. Current therapies include periodic intravenous infusion of supplementary recombinant enzyme (Enzyme Replacement Therapy–ERT) or bone marrow transplantation. However, ERT has limited efficacy due to poor penetration in some organs and tissues. Here, we investigated the potential of the β-D-xyloside derivative odiparcil as an oral GAG clearance therapy for Maroteaux–Lamy syndrome (Mucopolysaccharidosis type VI, MPS VI). In vitro, in bovine aortic endothelial cells, odiparcil stimulated the secretion of sulphated GAG into culture media, mainly of chondroitin sulphate (CS) /dermatan sulphate (DS) type. Efficacy of odiparcil in reducing intracellular GAG content was investigated in skin fibroblasts from MPS VI patients where odiparcil was shown to reduce efficiently the accumulation of intracellular CS with an EC50 in the range of 1 μM. In vivo, in wild type rats, after oral administrations, odiparcil was well distributed, achieving μM concentrations in MPS VI disease-relevant tissues and organs (bone, cartilage, heart and cornea). In MPS VI Arylsulphatase B deficient mice (Arsb-), after chronic oral administration, odiparcil consistently stimulated the urinary excretion of sulphated GAG throughout the treatment period and significantly reduced tissue GAG accumulation in liver and kidney. Furthermore, odiparcil diminished the pathological cartilage thickening observed in trachea and femoral growth plates of MPS VI mice. The therapeutic efficacy of odiparcil was similar in models of early (treatment starting in juvenile, 4 weeks old mice) or established disease (treatment starting in adult, 3 months old mice). Our data demonstrate that odiparcil effectively diverts the synthesis of cellular glycosaminoglycans into secreted soluble species and this effect can be used for reducing cellular and tissue GAG accumulation in MPS VI models. Therefore, our data reveal the potential of odiparcil as an oral GAG clearance therapy for MPS VI patients.

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<![CDATA[<i>Salmonella</i> Typhimurium discreet-invasion of the murine gut absorptive epithelium]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14650 Bacterial pathogens can use secreted effector molecules to drive entry into host cells. Studies of the intestinal pathogen S.Tm have been central to uncover the mechanistic basis for the entry process. More than two decades of research have resulted in a detailed model for how S.Tm invades gut epithelial cells through effector triggering of large Rho-GTPase-dependent actin ruffles. However, the evidence for this model comes predominantly from studies in cultured cell lines. These experimental systems lack many of the architectural and signaling features of the intact gut epithelium. Our study surprisingly reveals that in the intact mouse gut, S.Tm invades absorptive epithelial cells through a process that does not require the Rho-GTPase-activating effectors and can proceed in the absence of the prototypical ruffling response. Instead, S.Tm exploits another effector, SipA, to sneak in through discreet entry structures close to cell–cell junctions. Our results challenge the current model for S.Tm epithelial cell entry and emphasizes the need of taking a physiological host cell context into account when studying bacterium–host cell interactions.

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<![CDATA[A mathematical model coupling polarity signaling to cell adhesion explains diverse cell migration patterns]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5cab0ee8fa60be0154

Protrusion and retraction of lamellipodia are common features of eukaryotic cell motility. As a cell migrates through its extracellular matrix (ECM), lamellipod growth increases cell-ECM contact area and enhances engagement of integrin receptors, locally amplifying ECM input to internal signaling cascades. In contrast, contraction of lamellipodia results in reduced integrin engagement that dampens the level of ECM-induced signaling. These changes in cell shape are both influenced by, and feed back onto ECM signaling. Motivated by experimental observations on melanoma cells lines (1205Lu and SBcl2) migrating on fibronectin (FN) coated topographic substrates (anisotropic post-density arrays), we probe this interplay between intracellular and ECM signaling. Experimentally, cells exhibited one of three lamellipodial dynamics: persistently polarized, random, or oscillatory, with competing lamellipodia oscillating out of phase (Park et al., 2017). Pharmacological treatments, changes in FN density, and substrate topography all affected the fraction of cells exhibiting these behaviours. We use these observations as constraints to test a sequence of hypotheses for how intracellular (GTPase) and ECM signaling jointly regulate lamellipodial dynamics. The models encoding these hypotheses are predicated on mutually antagonistic Rac-Rho signaling, Rac-mediated protrusion (via activation of Arp2/3 actin nucleation) and Rho-mediated contraction (via ROCK phosphorylation of myosin light chain), which are coupled to ECM signaling that is modulated by protrusion/contraction. By testing each model against experimental observations, we identify how the signaling layers interact to generate the diverse range of cell behaviors, and how various molecular perturbations and changes in ECM signaling modulate the fraction of cells exhibiting each. We identify several factors that play distinct but critical roles in generating the observed dynamic: (1) competition between lamellipodia for shared pools of Rac and Rho, (2) activation of RhoA by ECM signaling, and (3) feedback from lamellipodial growth or contraction to cell-ECM contact area and therefore to the ECM signaling level.

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<![CDATA[Analysis of the nucleocytoplasmic shuttling RNA-binding protein HNRNPU using optimized HITS-CLIP method]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nb5a6160c-8969-498c-b6ff-671487ce7810

RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) control many types of post-transcriptional regulation, including mRNA splicing, mRNA stability, and translational efficiency, by directly binding to their target RNAs and their mutation and dysfunction are often associated with several human neurological diseases and tumorigenesis. Crosslinking immunoprecipitation (CLIP), coupled with high-throughput sequencing (HITS-CLIP), is a powerful technique for investigating the molecular mechanisms underlying disease pathogenesis by comprehensive identification of RBP target sequences at the transcriptome level. However, HITS-CLIP protocol is still required for some optimization due to experimental complication, low efficiency and time-consuming, whose library has to be generated from very small amounts of RNAs. Here we improved a more efficient, rapid, and reproducible CLIP method by optimizing BrdU-CLIP. Our protocol produced a 10-fold greater yield of pre-amplified CLIP library, which resulted in a low duplicate rate of CLIP-tag reads because the number of PCR cycles required for library amplification was reduced. Variance of the yields was also reduced, and the experimental period was shortened by 2 days. Using this, we validated IL-6 expression by a nuclear RBP, HNRNPU, which directly binds the 3’-UTR of IL-6 mRNA in HeLa cells. Importantly, this interaction was only observed in the cytoplasmic fraction, suggesting a role of cytoplasmic HNRNPU in mRNA stability control. This optimized method enables us to accurately identify target genes and provides a snapshot of the protein-RNA interactions of nucleocytoplasmic shuttling RBPs.

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<![CDATA[Effects of amotosalen treatment on human platelet lysate bioactivity: A proof-of-concept study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Ne8e94533-b9bd-43e3-83be-324d5eb7ad87

Background

Clinical application of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) usually requires an in vitro expansion step to reach clinically relevant numbers. In vitro cell expansion necessitates supplementation of basal mammalian cell culture medium with growth factors. To avoid using supplements containing animal substances, human platelet lysates (hPL) produced from expired and pathogen inactivated platelet concentrates can be used in place of fetal bovine serum. However, globally, most transfusion units are currently not pathogen inactivated. As blood banks are the sole source of platelet concentrates for hPL production, it is important to ensure product safety and standardized production methods. In this proof-of-concept study we assessed the feasibility of producing hPL from expired platelet concentrates with pathogen inactivation applied after platelet lysis by evaluating the retention of growth factors, cytokines, and the ability to support MSC proliferation and tri-lineage differentiation.

Methodology/Principal findings

Bone marrow-derived MSCs (BM-MSCs) were expanded and differentiated using hPL derived from pathogen inactivated platelet lysates (hPL-PIPL), with pathogen inactivation by amotosalen/ultraviolet A treatment applied after lysis of expired platelets. Results were compared to those using hPL produced from conventional expired pathogen inactivated platelet concentrates (hPL-PIPC), with pathogen inactivation applied after blood donation. hPL-PIPL treatment had lower concentrations of soluble growth factors and cytokines than hPL-PIPC treatment. When used as supplementation in cell culture, BM-MSCs proliferated at a reduced rate, but more consistently, in hPL-PIPL than in hPL-PIPC. The ability to support tri-lineage differentiation was comparable between lysates.

Conclusion/Significance

These results suggest that functional hPL can be produced from expired and untreated platelet lysates by applying pathogen inactivation after platelet lysis. When carried out post-expiration, pathogen inactivation may provide a valuable solution for further standardizing global hPL production methods, increasing the pool of starting material, and meeting future demand for animal-free supplements in human cell culturing.

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<![CDATA[Aqueous extract of Hibiscus sabdariffa inhibits pedestal induction by enteropathogenic E. coli and promotes bacterial filamentation in vitro]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c8c197bd5eed0c484b4d750

Diarrheic diseases account for the annual death of approximately 1.9 million children under the age of 5 years, and it is a major cause of work absenteeism in developed countries. As diarrheagenic bacteria, enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) attach to cells in the small intestine, causing local disappearance of microvilli and inducing the formation of actin-rich pedestals that disrupt the intestinal barrier and help EPEC adhere to and infect intestinal cells. Antibiotics and other bioactive compounds can often be found by analyzing traditional medicines. Here a crude aqueous extract of Hibiscus sabdariffa, which typically grows in subtropical and tropical areas and is a popular medicinal tisane in many countries, was analyzed for antibacterial activity against EPEC. In standard microdilution assays, the extract showed a minimum inhibitory concentration of 6.5 mg/ml against EPEC growth. Time-kill kinetics assays demonstrated significant 24 h bactericidal activity at 25 mg/ml. The extract is able to impede pedestal induction. Not only did the extract inhibit preformed pedestals but it prevented pedestal induction as well. Remarkably, it also promoted the formation of EPEC filaments, as observed with other antibiotics. Our results in vitro support the potential of Hibiscus sabdariffa as an antimicrobial agent against EPEC.

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<![CDATA[Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis associated POC5 mutation impairs cell cycle, cilia length and centrosome protein interactions]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c8accc4d5eed0c48498ff55

Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS) is a spinal deformity that affects approximately 3 percent of human adolescents. Although the etiology and molecular basis of AIS is unclear, several genes such as POC5 have been identified as possible causes of the condition. In order to understand the role of POC5 in the pathogenesis of AIS, we investigated the subcellular localization of POC5 in cilia of cells over-expressing either the wild type (wt) or an AIS-related POC5 variant POC5A429V. Mutation of POC5 was found to alter its subcellular localization and to induce ciliary retraction. Furthermore, we observed an impaired cell-cycle progression with the accumulation of cells in the S-phase in cells expressing POC5A429V. Using immunoprecipitation coupled to mass spectrometry, we identified specific protein interaction partners of POC5, most of which were components of cilia and cytoskeleton. Several of these interactions were altered upon mutation of POC5. Altogether, our results demonstrate major cellular alterations, disturbances in centrosome protein interactions and cilia retraction in cells expressing an AIS-related POC5 mutation. Our study suggests that defects in centrosomes and cilia may underlie AIS pathogenesis.

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<![CDATA[Ex vivo-expanded highly purified natural killer cells in combination with temozolomide induce antitumor effects in human glioblastoma cells in vitro]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c89771fd5eed0c4847d24e7

Glioblastoma is the leading malignant glioma with a poor prognosis. This study aimed to investigate the antitumor effects of natural killer cells in combination with temozolomide as the standard chemotherapeutic agent for glioblastoma. Using a simple, feeder-less, and chemically defined culture method, we expanded human peripheral blood mononuclear cells and assessed the receptor expression, natural killer cell activity, and regulatory T cell frequency in expanded cells. Next, using the standard human glioblastoma cell lines (temozolomide-sensitive U87MG, temozolomide-resistant T98G, and LN-18), we assessed the ligand expressions of receptors on natural killer cells. Furthermore, the antitumor effects of the combination of the expanded natural killer cells and temozolomide were assessed using growth inhibition assays, apoptosis detection assays, and senescence-associated β-galactosidase activity assays in the glioblastoma cell lines. Novel culture systems were sufficient to attain highly purified (>98%), expanded (>440-fold) CD3/CD56+ peripheral blood-derived natural killer cells. We designated the expanded population as genuine induced natural killer cells. Genuine induced natural killer cells exhibited a high natural killer activity and low regulatory T cell frequency compared with lymphokine-activated killer cells. Growth inhibition assays revealed that genuine induced natural killer cells inhibited the glioblastoma cell line growth but enhanced temozolomide-induced inhibition effects in U87MG. Apoptosis detection assays revealed that genuine induced natural killer cells induced apoptosis in the glioblastoma cell lines. Furthermore, senescence-associated β-galactosidase activity assays revealed that temozolomide induced senescence in U87MG. Genuine induced natural killer cells induce apoptosis in temozolomide-sensitive and temozolomide-resistant glioblastoma cells and enhances temozolomide-induced antitumor effects in different mechanisms. Hence, the combination of genuine induced natural killer cells and temozolomide may prove to be a promising immunochemotherapeutic approach in patients with glioblastoma if the antitumor effects in vivo can be demonstrated.

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<![CDATA[Methods of olfactory ensheathing cell harvesting from the olfactory mucosa in dogs]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c89778fd5eed0c4847d2ff8

Olfactory ensheathing cells are thought to support regeneration and remyelination of damaged axons when transplanted into spinal cord injuries. Following transplantation, improved locomotion has been detected in many laboratory models and in dogs with naturally-occurring spinal cord injury; safety trials in humans have also been completed. For widespread clinical implementation, it will be necessary to derive large numbers of these cells from an accessible and, preferably, autologous, source making olfactory mucosa a good candidate. Here, we compared the yield of olfactory ensheathing cells from the olfactory mucosa using 3 different techniques: rhinotomy, frontal sinus keyhole approach and rhinoscopy. From canine clinical cases with spinal cord injury, 27 biopsies were obtained by rhinotomy, 7 by a keyhole approach and 1 with rhinoscopy. Biopsy via rhinoscopy was also tested in 13 cadavers and 7 living normal dogs. After 21 days of cell culture, the proportions and populations of p75-positive (presumed to be olfactory ensheathing) cells obtained by the keyhole approach and rhinoscopy were similar (~4.5 x 106 p75-positive cells; ~70% of the total cell population), but fewer were obtained by frontal sinus rhinotomy. Cerebrospinal fluid rhinorrhea was observed in one dog and emphysema in 3 dogs following rhinotomy. Blepharitis occurred in one dog after the keyhole approach. All three biopsy methods appear to be safe for harvesting a suitable number of olfactory ensheathing cells from the olfactory mucosa for transplantation within the spinal cord but each technique has specific advantages and drawbacks.

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<![CDATA[Rescue of collapsed replication forks is dependent on NSMCE2 to prevent mitotic DNA damage]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6730a3d5eed0c484f37e1c

NSMCE2 is an E3 SUMO ligase and a subunit of the SMC5/6 complex that associates with the replication fork and protects against genomic instability. Here, we study the fate of collapsed replication forks generated by prolonged hydroxyurea treatment in human NSMCE2-deficient cells. Double strand breaks accumulate during rescue by converging forks in normal cells but not in NSMCE2-deficient cells. Un-rescued forks persist into mitosis, leading to increased mitotic DNA damage. Excess RAD51 accumulates and persists at collapsed forks in NSMCE2-deficient cells, possibly due to lack of BLM recruitment to stalled forks. Despite failure of BLM to accumulate at stalled forks, NSMCE2-deficient cells exhibit lower levels of hydroxyurea-induced sister chromatid exchange. In cells deficient in both NSMCE2 and BLM, hydroxyurea-induced double strand breaks and sister chromatid exchange resembled levels found in NSCME2-deficient cells. We conclude that the rescue of collapsed forks by converging forks is dependent on NSMCE2.

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<![CDATA[Targeted fluorescence lifetime probes reveal responsive organelle viscosity and membrane fluidity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6f151fd5eed0c48467ae1c

The only way to visually observe cellular viscosity, which can greatly influence biological reactions and has been linked to several human diseases, is through viscosity imaging. Imaging cellular viscosity has allowed the mapping of viscosity in cells, and the next frontier is targeted viscosity imaging of organelles and their microenvironments. Here we present a fluorescent molecular rotor/FLIM framework to image both organellar viscosity and membrane fluidity, using a combination of chemical targeting and organelle extraction. For demonstration, we image matrix viscosity and membrane fluidity of mitochondria, which have been linked to human diseases, including Alzheimer’s Disease and Leigh’s syndrome. We find that both are highly dynamic and responsive to small environmental and physiological changes, even under non-pathological conditions. This shows that neither viscosity nor fluidity can be assumed to be fixed and underlines the need for single-cell, and now even single-organelle, imaging.

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<![CDATA[On the influence of cannabinoids on cell morphology and motility of glioblastoma cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6c75a3d5eed0c4843cff4f

The mechanisms behind the anti-tumoral effects of cannabinoids by impacting the migratory activity of tumor cells are only partially understood. Previous studies demonstrated that cannabinoids altered the organization of the actin cytoskeleton in various cell types. As actin is one of the main contributors to cell motility and is postulated to be linked to tumor invasion, we tested the following hypothesizes: 1) Can cannabinoids alter cell motility in a cannabinoid receptor dependent manner? 2) Are these alterations associated with reorganizations in the actin cytoskeleton? 3) If so, what are the underlying molecular mechanisms? Three different glioblastoma cell lines were treated with specific cannabinoid receptor 1 and 2 agonists and antagonists. Afterwards, we measured changes in cell motility using live cell imaging and alterations of the actin structure in fixed cells. Additionally, the protein amount of phosphorylated p44/42 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), focal adhesion kinases (FAK) and phosphorylated FAK (pFAK) over time were measured. Cannabinoids induced changes in cell motility, morphology and actin organization in a receptor and cell line dependent manner. No significant changes were observed in the analyzed signaling molecules. Cannabinoids can principally induce changes in the actin cytoskeleton and motility of glioblastoma cell lines. Additionally, single cell motility of glioblastoma is independent of their morphology. Furthermore, the observed effects seem to be independent of p44/42 MAPK and pFAK pathways.

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<![CDATA[Yellow fever virus is susceptible to sofosbuvir both in vitro and in vivo]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5b52b6d5eed0c4842bcec1

Yellow fever virus (YFV) is a member of the Flaviviridae family. In Brazil, yellow fever (YF) cases have increased dramatically in sylvatic areas neighboring urban zones in the last few years. Because of the high lethality rates associated with infection and absence of any antiviral treatments, it is essential to identify therapeutic options to respond to YFV outbreaks. Repurposing of clinically approved drugs represents the fastest alternative to discover antivirals for public health emergencies. Other Flaviviruses, such as Zika (ZIKV) and dengue (DENV) viruses, are susceptible to sofosbuvir, a clinically approved drug against hepatitis C virus (HCV). Our data showed that sofosbuvir docks onto YFV RNA polymerase using conserved amino acid residues for nucleotide binding. This drug inhibited the replication of both vaccine and wild-type strains of YFV on human hepatoma cells, with EC50 values around 5 μM. Sofosbuvir protected YFV-infected neonatal Swiss mice and adult type I interferon receptor knockout mice (A129-/-) from mortality and weight loss. Because of its safety profile in humans and significant antiviral effects in vitro and in mice, Sofosbuvir may represent a novel therapeutic option for the treatment of YF. Key-words: Yellow fever virus; Yellow fever, antiviral; sofosbuvir

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<![CDATA[The role of Virus "X" (Tortoise Picornavirus) in kidney disease and shell weakness syndrome in European tortoise species determined by experimental infection]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c75ac17d5eed0c484d08133

Tortoise Picornavirus (ToPV) commonly known as Virus "X" was recently discovered in juvenile European tortoises suffering from soft carapace and plastron as well as kidney disease. Therefore, this virus was a potential candidate to be a causative agent for these disease patterns. Spur thighed tortoises (Testudo graeca) seemed to be more susceptible to establish clinical symptoms than other European species like T. hermanni. Thus this trial investigated the role of ToPV in the described syndrome. Two groups of juvenile European tortoises (T. graeca and T.hermanni) each of 10 animals, were cloacally, oronasally and intracoelomically inoculated with an infectious dose (~ 2000 TICD) of a ToPV strain isolated from a diseased T. graeca. A control group of two animals of each species received non-infected cell culture supernatant. The tortoises were examined daily and pharyngeal and cloacal swabs for detection of ToPV-RNA by RT-PCR were taken from each animal every six days for a period of 6 months. At the end of the study the remaining animals were euthanised and dissected. Bacteriological and parasitological tests were performed and organ samples of all tortoises were investigated by RT-PCR for the presence of ToPV and histopathology. Animals that were euthanised at the end of the experiment, were examined for presence of specific anti-ToPV antibodies. Several animals in both inoculated groups showed retarded growth and a light shell weakness, in comparison to the control animals. Three animals were euthanised during the trial, showing reduced weight gain, retarded growth, severe shell weakness and apathy, in parallel to clinical observations in naturally infected animals. In all inoculated animals of both species an intermittent virus shedding, starting from 18 days post inoculation (d.p.i.), till 164 d.p.i. was detected, while the control animals remained negative. The virus was successfully reisolated in terrapene heart cell culture in 16 of 20 inoculated animals of both species. Histopathology of most inoculated animals revealed a lack of bone remodeling and vacuolisation in kidney tubuli which supports the described pathogenesis of nephropathy and osteodystrophy. Anti- ToPV antibody titres ranged from 1:2 to >1:256 in 13 of 20 animals, whereas all control animals were seronegative. The study proofed the Henle Koch`s postulates of ToPV as causative agent for shell dystrophy and kidney disease in both testudo species. The proposed species specific sensitivity towards clinical disease was not observed.

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<![CDATA[Interleukin-13 maintains the stemness of conjunctival epithelial cell cultures prepared from human limbal explants]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6b2698d5eed0c484289d28

To use human limbal explants as an alternative source for generating conjunctival epithelium and to determine the effect of interleukin-13 (IL-13) on goblet cell number, mucin expression, and stemness. Human limbal explants prepared from 17 corneoscleral rims were cultured with or without IL-13 (IL-13+ and IL-13-, respectively) and followed up to passage 2 (primary culture [P0]–P2). Cells were characterized by alcian blue/periodic acid–Schiff (AB/PAS) staining (goblet cells); immunofluorescent staining for p63α (progenitor cells), Ki-67 (proliferation), MUC5AC (mucin, goblet cells), and keratin 7 (K7, conjunctival epithelial and goblet cells); and by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction for expression of the p63α (TP63), MUC5AC, MUC4 (conjunctival mucins), K3, K12 (corneal epithelial cells), and K7 genes. Clonogenic ability was determined by colony-forming efficiency (CFE) assay. Using limbal explants, we generated epithelium with conjunctival phenotype and high viability in P0, P1, and P2 cultures under IL-13+ and IL-13- conditions, i.e., epithelium with strong K7 positivity, high K7 and MUC4 expression and the presence of goblet cells (AB/PAS and MUC5AC positivity; MUC5AC expression). p63α positivity was similar in IL-13+ and IL-13- cultures and was decreased in P2 cultures; however, there was increased TP63 expression in the presence of IL-13 (especially in the P1 cultures). Similarly, IL-13 increased proliferative activity in P1 cultures and significantly promoted P0 and P1 culture CFE. IL-13 did not increase goblet cell number in the P0–P2 cultures, nor did it influence MUC5AC and MUC4 expression. By harvesting unattached cells on day 1 of P1 we obtained goblet cell rich subpopulation showing AB/PAS, MUC5AC, and K7 positivity, but with no growth potential. In conclusion, limbal explants were successfully used to develop conjunctival epithelium with the presence of putative stem and goblet cells and with the ability to preserve the stemness of P0 and P1 cultures under IL-13 influence.

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<![CDATA[Immunomagnetic isolation of circulating melanoma cells and detection of PD-L1 status]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c673061d5eed0c484f37a3b

Personalised medicine targeted to specific biomarkers such as BRAF and c-Kit has radically improved the success of melanoma therapy. More recently, further advances have been made using therapies targeting the immune response. In particular, therapies targeting the PD-1/PD-L1 or CTLA-4 axes alone or in combination have shown more sustained responses in 30–60% of patients. However, these therapies are associated with considerable toxicities and useful biomarkers to predict responders and non-responders are slow to emerge. Here we developed a reliable melanoma circulating tumor cell (CTC) detection method with PD-L1 evaluation on CTCs. A set of melanoma cell surface markers was tested as candidates for targeted melanoma CTC isolation and a melanoma specific immunostaining-based CTC identification protocol combined with PD-L1 detection was established. In vitro testing of the effect of exposure to blood cells on melanoma cell PD-L1 expression was undertaken. Immunomagnetic targeting isolated melanoma CTCs in up to 87.5% of stage IV melanoma patient blood samples and 3 8.6% of these had some PD-L1 expressing CTCs. Our in vitro data demonstrate PD-L1 induction on melanoma cells in the blood.This study established a robust, reliable method to isolate melanoma CTCs and detect expression of PD-L1 on these cells.

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<![CDATA[Bclaf1 critically regulates the type I interferon response and is degraded by alphaherpesvirus US3]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c57e68bd5eed0c484ef366f

Type I interferon response plays a prominent role against viral infection, which is frequently disrupted by viruses. Here, we report Bcl-2 associated transcription factor 1 (Bclaf1) is degraded during the alphaherpesvirus Pseudorabies virus (PRV) and Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) infections through the viral protein US3. We further reveal that Bclaf1 functions critically in type I interferon signaling. Knockdown or knockout of Bclaf1 in cells significantly impairs interferon-α (IFNα) -mediated gene transcription and viral inhibition against US3 deficient PRV and HSV-1. Mechanistically, Bclaf1 maintains a mechanism allowing STAT1 and STAT2 to be efficiently phosphorylated in response to IFNα, and more importantly, facilitates IFN-stimulated gene factor 3 (ISGF3) binding with IFN-stimulated response elements (ISRE) for efficient gene transcription by directly interacting with ISRE and STAT2. Our studies establish the importance of Bclaf1 in IFNα-induced antiviral immunity and in the control of viral infections.

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<![CDATA[Collective radioresistance of T47D breast carcinoma cells is mediated by a Syncytin-1 homologous protein]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5b524ad5eed0c4842bc5fc

It is generally accepted that radiotherapy must target clonogenic cells, i.e., those cells in a tumour that have self-renewing potential. Focussing on isolated clonogenic cells, however, may lead to an underestimate or even to an outright neglect of the importance of biological mechanisms that regulate tumour cell sensitivity to radiation. We develop a new statistical and experimental approach to quantify the effects of radiation on cell populations as a whole. In our experiments, we change the proximity relationships of the cells by culturing them in wells with different shapes, and we find that the radiosensitivity of T47D human breast carcinoma cells in tight clusters is different from that of isolated cells. Molecular analyses show that T47D cells express a Syncytin-1 homologous protein (SyHP). We observe that SyHP translocates to the external surface of the plasma membrane of cells killed by radiation treatment. The data support the fundamental role of SyHP in the formation of intercellular cytoplasmic bridges and in the enhanced radioresistance of surviving cells. We conclude that complex and unexpected biological mechanisms of tumour radioresistance take place at the cell population level. These mechanisms may significantly bias our estimates of the radiosensitivity of breast carcinomas in vivo and thereby affect treatment plans, and they call for further investigations.

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<![CDATA[Single-molecule dynamics and genome-wide transcriptomics reveal that NF-kB (p65)-DNA binding times can be decoupled from transcriptional activation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c4a3091d5eed0c4844c0568

Transcription factors (TFs) regulate gene expression in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes by recognizing and binding to specific DNA promoter sequences. In higher eukaryotes, it remains unclear how the duration of TF binding to DNA relates to downstream transcriptional output. Here, we address this question for the transcriptional activator NF-κB (p65), by live-cell single molecule imaging of TF-DNA binding kinetics and genome-wide quantification of p65-mediated transcription. We used mutants of p65, perturbing either the DNA binding domain (DBD) or the protein-protein transactivation domain (TAD). We found that p65-DNA binding time was predominantly determined by its DBD and directly correlated with its transcriptional output as long as the TAD is intact. Surprisingly, mutation or deletion of the TAD did not modify p65-DNA binding stability, suggesting that the p65 TAD generally contributes neither to the assembly of an “enhanceosome,” nor to the active removal of p65 from putative specific binding sites. However, TAD removal did reduce p65-mediated transcriptional activation, indicating that protein-protein interactions act to translate the long-lived p65-DNA binding into productive transcription.

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