Science.gov

Sample records for intercellular junction assembly

  1. Flow mechanotransduction regulates traction forces, intercellular forces, and adherens junctions

    PubMed Central

    Ting, Lucas H.; Jahn, Jessica R.; Jung, Joon I.; Shuman, Benjamin R.; Feghhi, Shirin; Han, Sangyoon J.; Rodriguez, Marita L.

    2012-01-01

    Endothelial cells respond to fluid shear stress through mechanotransduction responses that affect their cytoskeleton and cell-cell contacts. Here, endothelial cells were grown as monolayers on arrays of microposts and exposed to laminar or disturbed flow to examine the relationship among traction forces, intercellular forces, and cell-cell junctions. Cells under laminar flow had traction forces that were higher than those under static conditions, whereas cells under disturbed flow had lower traction forces. The response in adhesion junction assembly matched closely with changes in traction forces since adherens junctions were larger in size for laminar flow and smaller for disturbed flow. Treating the cells with calyculin-A to increase myosin phosphorylation and traction forces caused an increase in adherens junction size, whereas Y-27362 cause a decrease in their size. Since tugging forces across cell-cell junctions can promote junctional assembly, we developed a novel approach to measure intercellular forces and found that these forces were higher for laminar flow than for static or disturbed flow. The size of adherens junctions and tight junctions matched closely with intercellular forces for these flow conditions. These results indicate that laminar flow can increase cytoskeletal tension while disturbed flow decreases cytoskeletal tension. Consequently, we found that changes in cytoskeletal tension in response to shear flow conditions can affect intercellular tension, which in turn regulates the assembly of cell-cell junctions. PMID:22447948

  2. Terbinafine inhibits gap junctional intercellular communication.

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-15

    Terbinafine is an antifungal agent that selectively inhibits fungal sterol synthesis by blocking squalene epoxidase. We evaluated the effect of terbinafine on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC). Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) and I-YFP GJIC assays revealed that terbinafine inhibits GJIC in a reversible and dose-dependent manner in FRT-Cx43 and LN215 cells. Treatment with terbinafine did not affect Cx43 phosphorylation status or intracellular Ca(2+) concentration, well-known action mechanisms of various GJIC blockers. While a structurally related chemical, naftifine, attenuated GJIC, epigallocatechin gallate, another potent squalene epoxidase inhibitor with a different structure, did not. These results suggest that terbinafine inhibits GJIC with a so far unknown mechanism of action. PMID:27487578

  3. Altered patterns of cardiac intercellular junction distribution in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed Central

    Sepp, R.; Severs, N. J.; Gourdie, R. G.

    1996-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To examine the distribution pattern of intercellular junctions (the mechanically coupling desmosomes and the electrically coupling gap junctions) in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) hearts showing myofibre disarray. DESIGN: Samples from six necropsied hearts were studied, representing the interventricular septum and the free walls of the left and right ventricles. Immunohistochemical labelling of desmoplakin was used as a marker for desmosomes, and of connexin43 as a marker for gap junctions, in single and double stainings. The slides were examined by confocal laser scanning microscopy. RESULTS: Marked disorganisation of intercalated discs was observed in areas featuring myofibre disarray. Besides overall derangement, localised abnormalities in desmosome organisation were evident, which included: (1) the formation of abnormally enlarged megadiscs; (2) the presence of intersecting disc structures; and (3) aberrant side to side desmosomal connections. Gap junctional abnormalities included: (1) random distribution of gap junctions over the surface of myocytes, rather than localisation to intercalated discs; (2) abundant side to side gap junction connections between adjacent myocytes; and (3) formation of abnormally shaped gap junctions. Circles of myocytes continuously interconnected by gap junctions were also observed. Regions of the diseased hearts lacking myofibre disarray, and control hearts of normal patients and patients with other cardiac diseases, did not show these alterations. CONCLUSIONS: The disorganisation of the intercellular junctions associated with myofibre disarray in HCM may play an important role in the pathophysiological manifestations of the disease. The remodelling of gap junction distribution may underlie the formation of an arrhythmogenic substrate, thereby contributing to the generation and maintenance of cardiac arrhythmias associated with HCM. Images PMID:8944586

  4. Treponema pallidum Invades Intercellular Junctions of Endothelial Cell Monolayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, D. Denee; Navab, Mahamad; Haake, David A.; Fogelman, Alan M.; Miller, James N.; Lovett, Michael A.

    1988-05-01

    The pathogenesis of syphilis reflects invasive properties of Treponema pallidum, but the actual mode of tissue invasion is unknown. We have found two in vitro parallels of treponemal invasiveness. We tested whether motile T. pallidum could invade host cells by determining the fate of radiolabeled motile organisms added to a HeLa cell monolayer; 26% of treponemes associated with the monolayer in a trypsin-resistant niche, presumably between the monolayer and the surface to which it adhered, but did not attain intracellularity. Attachment of T. pallidum to cultured human and rabbit aortic and human umbilical vein endothelial cells was 2-fold greater than to HeLa cells. We added T. pallidum to aortic endothelial cells grown on membrane filters under conditions in which tight intercellular junctions had formed. T. pallidum was able to pass through the endothelial cell monolayers without altering tight junctions, as measured by electrical resistance. In contrast, heat-killed T. pallidum and the nonpathogen Treponema phagedenis biotype Reiter failed to penetrate the monolayer. Transmission electron micrographs of sections of the monolayer showed T. pallidum in intercellular junctions. Our in vitro observations suggest that these highly motile spirochetes may leave the circulation by invading the junctions between endothelial cells.

  5. Reduction in gap junction intercellular communication promotes glioma migration.

    PubMed

    Aftab, Qurratulain; Sin, Wun-Chey; Naus, Christian C

    2015-05-10

    Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM), an aggressive form of adult brain tumor, is difficult to treat due to its invasive nature. One of the molecular changes observed in GBM is a decrease in the expression of the gap junction protein Connexin43 (Cx43); however, how a reduction in Cx43 expression contributes to glioma malignancy is still unclear. In this study we examine whether a decrease in Cx43 protein expression has a role in enhanced cell migration, a key feature associated with increased tumorigenicity. We used a 3D spheroid migration model that mimics the in vivo architecture of tumor cells to quantify migration changes. We found that down-regulation of Cx43 expression in the U118 human glioma cell line increased migration by reducing cell-ECM adhesion, and changed the migration pattern from collective to single cell. In addition gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) played a more prominent role in mediating migration than the cytoplasmic interactions of the C-terminal tail. Live imaging revealed that reducing Cx43 expression enhanced relative migration by increasing the cell speed and affecting the direction of migration. Taken together our findings reveal an unexplored role of GJIC in facilitating collective migration. PMID:25926558

  6. Benzalkonium Chloride Suppresses Rabbit Corneal Endothelium Intercellular Gap Junction Communication

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhenhao; Huang, Yue; Xie, Hui; Pan, Juxin; Liu, Fanfei; Li, Xuezhi; Chen, Wensheng; Hu, Jiaoyue; Liu, Zuguo

    2014-01-01

    Purpose Gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) plays a critical role in the maintenance of corneal endothelium homeostasis. We determined if benzalkonium chloride (BAK) alters GJIC activity in the rabbit corneal endothelium since it is commonly used as a drug preservative in ocular eyedrop preparations even though it can have cytotoxic effects. Methods Thirty-six adult New Zealand albino rabbits were randomly divided into three groups. BAK at 0.01%, 0.05%, and 0.1% was applied twice daily to one eye of each of the rabbits in one of the three groups for seven days. The contralateral untreated eyes were used as controls. Corneal endothelial morphological features were observed by in vivo confocal microscopy (IVCM). Immunofluorescent staining resolved changes in gap junction integrity and localization. Western blot analysis and RT-PCR evaluated changes in levels of connexin43 (Cx43) and tight junction zonula occludens-1 (ZO-1) gene and protein expression, respectively. Cx43 and ZO-1 physical interaction was detected by immunoprecipitation (IP). Primary rabbit corneal endothelial cells were cultured in Dulbecco's Modified Eagle Medium (DMEM) containing BAK for 24 hours. The scrape-loading dye transfer technique (SLDT) was used to assess GJIC activity. Results Topical administration of BAK (0.05%, 0.1%) dose dependently disrupted corneal endothelial cell morphology, altered Cx43 and ZO-1 distribution and reduced Cx43 expression. BAK also markedly induced increases in Cx43 phosphorylation status concomitant with decreases in the Cx43-ZO-1 protein-protein interaction. These changes were associated with marked declines in GJIC activity. Conclusions The dose dependent declines in rabbit corneal endothelial GJIC activity induced by BAK are associated with less Cx43-ZO-1 interaction possibly arising from increases in Cx43 phosphorylation and declines in its protein expression. These novel changes provide additional evidence that BAK containing eyedrop preparations

  7. Spatial organization and signal transduction at intercellular junctions

    PubMed Central

    Manz, Boryana N.; Groves, Jay T.

    2013-01-01

    The coordinated organization of cell membrane receptors into diverse micrometre-scale spatial patterns is emerging as an important theme of intercellular signalling, as exemplified by immunological synapses. Key characteristics of these patterns are that they transcend direct protein–protein interactions, emerge transiently and modulate signal transduction. Such cooperativity over multiple length scales presents new and intriguing challenges for the study and ultimate understanding of cellular signalling. As a result, new experimental strategies have emerged to manipulate the spatial organization of molecules inside living cells. The resulting spatial mutations yield insights into the interweaving of the spatial, mechanical and chemical aspects of intercellular signalling. PMID:20354536

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-11-01

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

  9. Impact of Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication on MLO-Y4 Sclerostin and Soluble Factor Expression.

    PubMed

    York, S L; Sethu, P; Saunders, M M

    2016-04-01

    Bone remodeling is a continual process in which old bone is resorbed by osteoclasts and new bone is formed by osteoblasts, providing a mechanism for bones' ability to adapt to changes in its mechanical environment. While the role of osteoblasts and osteoclasts in bone remodeling is well understood, the cellular regulation of bone remodeling is unclear. One theory is that osteocytes, found within bone, play an important role in controlling the bone remodeling response. Osteocytes possess gap junctions, narrow channels that extend between nearby cells and allow communication between cells via the transfer of small molecules and ions. This work investigated the potential role of gap junctional intercellular communication in bone remodeling by exposing osteocyte-like MLO-Y4 cells to mechanical strains and quantifying the expression of soluble factors, including sclerostin, a protein closely associated with bone remodeling. The soluble factors and sclerostin expression were further examined after inhibiting gap junctional intercellular communication to study the impact of the communication. At supraphysiologic strains, the inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication led to increases in sclerostin expression relative to cells in which communication was present, indicating that the communication may play a significant role in regulating bone remodeling. PMID:26154422

  10. Intercellular Diffusion of a Fluorescent Sucrose Analog via the Septal Junctions in a Filamentous Cyanobacterium

    PubMed Central

    Nürnberg, Dennis J.; Mariscal, Vicente; Bornikoel, Jan; Nieves-Morión, Mercedes; Krauß, Norbert; Herrero, Antonia

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Many filamentous cyanobacteria produce specialized nitrogen-fixing cells called heterocysts, which are located at semiregular intervals along the filament with about 10 to 20 photosynthetic vegetative cells in between. Nitrogen fixation in these complex multicellular bacteria depends on metabolite exchange between the two cell types, with the heterocysts supplying combined-nitrogen compounds but dependent on the vegetative cells for photosynthetically produced carbon compounds. Here, we used a fluorescent tracer to probe intercellular metabolite exchange in the filamentous heterocyst-forming cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120. We show that esculin, a fluorescent sucrose analog, is incorporated by a sucrose import system into the cytoplasm of Anabaena cells. The cytoplasmic esculin is rapidly and reversibly exchanged across vegetative-vegetative and vegetative-heterocyst cell junctions. Our measurements reveal the kinetics of esculin exchange and also show that intercellular metabolic communication is lost in a significant fraction of older heterocysts. SepJ, FraC, and FraD are proteins located at the intercellular septa and are suggested to form structures analogous to gap junctions. We show that a ΔsepJ ΔfraC ΔfraD triple mutant shows an altered septum structure with thinner septa but a denser peptidoglycan layer. Intercellular diffusion of esculin and fluorescein derivatives is impaired in this mutant, which also shows a greatly reduced frequency of nanopores in the intercellular septal cross walls. These findings suggest that FraC, FraD, and SepJ are important for the formation of junctional structures that constitute the major pathway for feeding heterocysts with sucrose. PMID:25784700

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

    SciTech Connect

    Orellana, Juan A.; Palacios-Prado, Nicolas; Saez, Juan C. . E-mail: jsaez@bio.puc.cl

    2006-06-15

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

  12. GLIAL ANKYRINS FACILITATE PARANODAL AXOGLIAL JUNCTION ASSEMBLY

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Kae-Jiun; Zollinger, Daniel R.; Susuki, Keiichiro; Sherman, Diane L.; Makara, Michael A.; Brophy, Peter J.; Cooper, Edward C.; Bennett, Vann; Mohler, Peter J.; Rasband, Matthew N.

    2014-01-01

    Neuron-glia interactions establish functional membrane domains along myelinated axons. These include nodes of Ranvier, paranodal axoglial junctions, and juxtaparanodes. Paranodal junctions are the largest vertebrate junctional adhesion complex, are essential for rapid saltatory conduction, and contribute to assembly and maintenance of nodes. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying paranodal junction assembly are poorly understood. Ankyrins are cytoskeletal scaffolds traditionally associated with Na+ channel clustering in neurons and important for membrane domain establishment and maintenance in many cell types. Here, we show that ankyrinB, expressed by Schwann cells, and ankyrinG, expressed by oligodendrocytes, are highly enriched at the glial side of paranodal junctions where they interact with the essential glial junctional component neurofascin 155. Conditional knockout of ankyrins in oligodendrocytes disrupts paranodal junction assembly and delays nerve conduction during early development in mice. Thus, glial ankyrins function as major scaffolds that facilitate early and efficient paranodal junction assembly in the developing central nervous system. PMID:25362471

  13. Glial ankyrins facilitate paranodal axoglial junction assembly.

    PubMed

    Chang, Kae-Jiun; Zollinger, Daniel R; Susuki, Keiichiro; Sherman, Diane L; Makara, Michael A; Brophy, Peter J; Cooper, Edward C; Bennett, Vann; Mohler, Peter J; Rasband, Matthew N

    2014-12-01

    Neuron-glia interactions establish functional membrane domains along myelinated axons. These include nodes of Ranvier, paranodal axoglial junctions and juxtaparanodes. Paranodal junctions are the largest vertebrate junctional adhesion complex, and they are essential for rapid saltatory conduction and contribute to assembly and maintenance of nodes. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying paranodal junction assembly are poorly understood. Ankyrins are cytoskeletal scaffolds traditionally associated with Na(+) channel clustering in neurons and are important for membrane domain establishment and maintenance in many cell types. Here we show that ankyrin-B, expressed by Schwann cells, and ankyrin-G, expressed by oligodendrocytes, are highly enriched at the glial side of paranodal junctions where they interact with the essential glial junctional component neurofascin 155. Conditional knockout of ankyrins in oligodendrocytes disrupts paranodal junction assembly and delays nerve conduction during early development in mice. Thus, glial ankyrins function as major scaffolds that facilitate early and efficient paranodal junction assembly in the developing CNS. PMID:25362471

  14. Kinetic Measurements Reveal Enhanced Protein-Protein Interactions at Intercellular Junctions

    PubMed Central

    Shashikanth, Nitesh; Kisting, Meridith A.; Leckband, Deborah E.

    2016-01-01

    The binding properties of adhesion proteins are typically quantified from measurements with soluble fragments, under conditions that differ radically from the confined microenvironment of membrane bound proteins in adhesion zones. Using classical cadherin as a model adhesion protein, we tested the postulate that confinement within quasi two-dimensional intercellular gaps exposes weak protein interactions that are not detected in solution binding assays. Micropipette-based measurements of cadherin-mediated, cell-cell binding kinetics identified a unique kinetic signature that reflects both adhesive (trans) bonds between cadherins on opposing cells and lateral (cis) interactions between cadherins on the same cell. In solution, proposed lateral interactions were not detected, even at high cadherin concentrations. Mutations postulated to disrupt lateral cadherin association altered the kinetic signatures, but did not affect the adhesive (trans) binding affinity. Perturbed kinetics further coincided with altered cadherin distributions at junctions, wound healing dynamics, and paracellular permeability. Intercellular binding kinetics thus revealed cadherin interactions that occur within confined, intermembrane gaps but not in solution. Findings further demonstrate the impact of these revealed interactions on the organization and function of intercellular junctions. PMID:27009566

  15. Kinetic Measurements Reveal Enhanced Protein-Protein Interactions at Intercellular Junctions.

    PubMed

    Shashikanth, Nitesh; Kisting, Meridith A; Leckband, Deborah E

    2016-01-01

    The binding properties of adhesion proteins are typically quantified from measurements with soluble fragments, under conditions that differ radically from the confined microenvironment of membrane bound proteins in adhesion zones. Using classical cadherin as a model adhesion protein, we tested the postulate that confinement within quasi two-dimensional intercellular gaps exposes weak protein interactions that are not detected in solution binding assays. Micropipette-based measurements of cadherin-mediated, cell-cell binding kinetics identified a unique kinetic signature that reflects both adhesive (trans) bonds between cadherins on opposing cells and lateral (cis) interactions between cadherins on the same cell. In solution, proposed lateral interactions were not detected, even at high cadherin concentrations. Mutations postulated to disrupt lateral cadherin association altered the kinetic signatures, but did not affect the adhesive (trans) binding affinity. Perturbed kinetics further coincided with altered cadherin distributions at junctions, wound healing dynamics, and paracellular permeability. Intercellular binding kinetics thus revealed cadherin interactions that occur within confined, intermembrane gaps but not in solution. Findings further demonstrate the impact of these revealed interactions on the organization and function of intercellular junctions. PMID:27009566

  16. Salt-inducible kinase 1 regulates E-cadherin expression and intercellular junction stability.

    PubMed

    Eneling, Kristina; Brion, Laura; Pinto, Vanda; Pinho, Maria J; Sznajder, Jacob I; Mochizuki, Naoki; Emoto, Kazuo; Soares-da-Silva, Patricio; Bertorello, Alejandro M

    2012-08-01

    The protein kinase liver kinase B1 (LKB1) regulates cell polarity and intercellular junction stability. Also, LKB1 controls the activity of salt-inducible kinase 1 (SIK1). The role and relevance of SIK1 and its downstream effectors in linking the LKB1 signals within these processes are partially understood. We hypothesize that SIK1 may link LKB1 signals to the maintenance of epithelial junction stability by regulating E-cadherin expression. Results from our studies using a mouse lung alveolar epithelial (MLE-12) cell line or human renal proximal tubule (HK2) cell line transiently or stably lacking the expression of SIK1 (using SIK1 siRNAs or shRNAs), or with its expression abrogated (sik1(+/+) vs. sik1(-/-) mice), indicate that suppression of SIK1 (∼40%) increases the expression of the transcriptional repressors Snail2 (∼12-fold), Zeb1 (∼100%), Zeb2 (∼50%), and TWIST (∼20-fold) by activating cAMP-response element binding protein. The lack of SIK1 and activation of transcriptional repressors decreases the availability of E-cadherin (mRNA and protein expression by ∼100 and 80%, respectively) and the stability of intercellular junctions in epithelia (decreases in transepithelial resistance). Furthermore, LKB1-mediated increases in E-cadherin expression are impaired in cells where SIK1 has been disabled. We conclude that SIK1 is a key regulator of E-cadherin expression, and thereby contributes to the stability of intercellular junctions. PMID:22522110

  17. tal1 Regulates the formation of intercellular junctions and the maintenance of identity in the endocardium.

    PubMed

    Schumacher, Jennifer A; Bloomekatz, Joshua; Garavito-Aguilar, Zayra V; Yelon, Deborah

    2013-11-15

    The endocardium forms the inner lining of the heart tube, where it enables blood flow and also interacts with the myocardium during the formation of valves and trabeculae. Although a number of studies have identified regulators in the morphogenesis of the myocardium, relatively little is known about the molecules that control endocardial morphogenesis. Prior work has implicated the bHLH transcription factor Tal1 in endocardial tube formation: in zebrafish embryos lacking Tal1, endocardial cells form a disorganized mass within the ventricle and do not populate the atrium. Through blastomere transplantation, we find that tal1 plays a cell-autonomous role in regulating endocardial extension, suggesting that Tal1 activity influences the behavior of individual endocardial cells. The defects in endocardial behavior in tal1-deficient embryos originate during the earliest steps of endocardial morphogenesis: tal1-deficient endocardial cells fail to generate a cohesive monolayer at the midline and instead pack tightly together into a multi-layered aggregate. Moreover, the tight junction protein ZO-1 is mislocalized in the tal1-deficient endocardium, indicating a defect in intercellular junction formation. In addition, we find that the tal1-deficient endocardium fails to maintain its identity; over time, a progressively increasing number of tal1-deficient endocardial cells initiate myocardial gene expression. However, the onset of defects in intercellular junction formation precedes the onset of ectopic myocardial gene expression in the tal1-deficient endocardium. We therefore propose a model in which Tal1 has distinct roles in regulating the formation of endocardial intercellular junctions and maintaining endocardial identity. PMID:24075907

  18. tal1 regulates the formation of intercellular junctions and the maintenance of identity in the endocardium

    PubMed Central

    Schumacher, Jennifer A.; Bloomekatz, Joshua; Garavito-Aguilar, Zayra V.; Yelon, Deborah

    2014-01-01

    The endocardium forms the inner lining of the heart tube, where it enables blood flow and also interacts with the myocardium during the formation of valves and trabeculae. Although a number of studies have identified regulators of the morphogenesis of the myocardium, relatively little is known about the molecules that control endocardial morphogenesis. Prior work has implicated the bHLH transcription factor Tal1 in endocardial tube formation: in zebrafish embryos lacking Tal1, endocardial cells form a disorganized mass within the ventricle and do not populate the atrium. Through blastomere transplantation, we find that tal1 plays a cell-autonomous role in regulating endocardial extension, suggesting that Tal1 activity influences the behavior of individual endocardial cells. The defects in endocardial behavior in tal1-deficient embryos originate during the earliest steps of endocardial morphogenesis: tal1-deficient endocardial cells fail to generate a cohesive monolayer at the midline and instead pack tightly together into a multi-layered aggregate. Moreover, the tight junction protein ZO-1 is mislocalized in the tal1-deficient endocardium, indicating a defect in intercellular junction formation. In addition, we find that the tal1-deficient endocardium fails to maintain its identity; over time, a progressively increasing number of tal1-deficient endocardial cells initiate myocardial gene expression. However, the onset of defects in intercellular junction formation precedes the onset of ectopic myocardial gene expression in the tal1-deficient endocardium. We therefore propose a model in which Tal1 has distinct roles in regulating the formation of endocardial intercellular junctions and maintaining endocardial identity. PMID:24075907

  19. Reversible Opening of Intercellular Junctions of Intestinal Epithelial and Brain Endothelial Cells With Tight Junction Modulator Peptides.

    PubMed

    Bocsik, Alexandra; Walter, Fruzsina R; Gyebrovszki, Andrea; Fülöp, Lívia; Blasig, Ingolf; Dabrowski, Sebastian; Ötvös, Ferenc; Tóth, András; Rákhely, Gábor; Veszelka, Szilvia; Vastag, Monika; Szabó-Révész, Piroska; Deli, Mária A

    2016-02-01

    The intercellular junctions restrict the free passage of hydrophilic compounds through the paracellular clefts. Reversible opening of the tight junctions of biological barriers is investigated as one of the ways to increase drug delivery to the systemic circulation or the central nervous system. Six peptides, ADT-6, HAV-6, C-CPE, 7-mer (FDFWITP, PN-78), AT-1002, and PN-159, acting on different integral membrane and linker junctional proteins were tested on Caco-2 intestinal epithelial cell line and a coculture model of the blood-brain barrier. All peptides tested in nontoxic concentrations showed a reversible tight junctions modulating effect and were effective to open the paracellular pathway for the marker molecules fluorescein and albumin. The change in the structure of cell-cell junctions was verified by immunostaining for occludin, claudin-4,-5, ZO-1, β-catenin, and E-cadherin. Expression levels of occludin and claudins were measured in both models. We could demonstrate a selectivity of C-CPE, ADT-6, and HAV-6 peptides for epithelial cells and 7-mer and AT-1002 peptides for brain endothelial cells. PN-159 was the most effective modulator of junctional permeability in both models possibly acting via claudin-1 and -5. Our results indicate that these peptides can be effectively and selectively used as potential pharmaceutical excipients to improve drug delivery across biological barriers. PMID:26869428

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

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abstract

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

  1. Effects of different forms of chitosan on intercellular junctions of mouse fibroblasts in vitro.

    PubMed

    Uslu, B; Biltekin, B; Denir, S; Özbaş-Turan, S; Arbak, S; Akbuğa, J; Bilir, A

    2016-01-01

    Chitosan is a linear polysaccharide that has many biomedical applications. We compared the effects of chitosan, in both solution and membranous form, on intercellular adhesion of Swiss 3T3 mouse fibroblasts. Cells were grown as spheroidal cell cultures. Some control cell spheroids were cultured without chitosan and two experimental groups were cultured with chitosan. Chitosan in solution was used for one experimental group and chitosan in membranous form was used for the other. For each group, intercellular adhesion was investigated on days 5 and 10 of culture. Transmission electron microscopy revealed well-defined cellular projections that were more prominent in cells exposed to either membranous or solution forms of chitosan than to the chitosan-free control. Immunocytochemical staining of ICAM-1 and e-cadherin was used to determine the development of intercellular junctions. Compared to the weakly stained control, strong reactions were observed in both chitosan exposed groups at both 5 and 10 days. Cells were treated with 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine (BrdU) and incubated with anti-BrdU primary antibody to assess proliferation. Both the solution and membranous forms of chitosan increased proliferation at both 5 and 10 days. Cellular viability was assessed using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT). The MTT assay indicated high cell viability; maximum viability was obtained with the solution form of chitosan at day 5. Chitosan exposure increased the number of intercellular junctions and showed a significant proliferative effect on 3T3 mouse fibroblasts. PMID:26523482

  2. Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis zoospore secretions rapidly disturb intercellular junctions in frog skin.

    PubMed

    Brutyn, Melanie; D'Herde, Katharina; Dhaenens, Maarten; Van Rooij, Pascale; Verbrugghe, Elin; Hyatt, Alex D; Croubels, Siska; Deforce, Dieter; Ducatelle, Richard; Haesebrouck, Freddy; Martel, An; Pasmans, Frank

    2012-10-01

    Global amphibian declines are in part driven by the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, causing superficial dermatomycosis with epidermal hyperplasia and hyperkeratosis in infected amphibians. The susceptibility to chytridiomycosis and the severity of epidermal lesions in amphibians with chytridiomycosis are not consistent across species or even among individuals. Severe infections cause death of the animal most likely through disturbance of ion homeostasis. The mechanism by which this superficial skin infection results in epidermal lesions has so far eluded precise definition. It was the aim of this study to unravel how B. dendrobatidis causes alterations that affect skin integrity. Exposure of Xenopus laevis skin to B. dendrobatidis zoospore supernatant using skin explants and Ussing chambers caused rapid disruption of intercellular junctions, demonstrated using histology and transmission electron microscopy. The loss of intercellular junctions led to detachment-induced cell apoptosis, or anoikis. The zoospore supernatant induced neither apoptosis nor necrosis in isolated primary keratinocytes of X. laevis. This supports the idea that the loss of cell contacts triggered apoptosis in the skin explants. Mass spectrometric analysis of the protein composition of the supernatant revealed a complex mixture, including several new virulence associated proteins, such as proteases, biofilm-associated proteins and a carotenoid ester lipase. Protease and lipase activity of the supernatant was confirmed with a protease and lipase assay. In conclusion, B. dendrobatidis zoospores produce a complex mixture of proteins that quickly disturbs epidermal intercellular junctions leading to anoikis in the anuran skin. The role of the identified proteins in this process remains to be determined. PMID:22903040

  3. Modulated gap junctional intercellular communication as a biomarker of PAH epigenetic toxicity: structure-function relationship.

    PubMed Central

    Upham, B L; Weis, L M; Trosko, J E

    1998-01-01

    Cancer is a multistage multimechanism process involving gene and/or chromosomal mutations (genotoxic events), altered gene expression at the transcriptional, translational, and post-translational levels (epigenetic events), and altered cell survival (proliferation and apoptosis or necrosis), resulting in an imbalance of the organism's homeostasis. Maintenance of the organism's homeostasis depends on the intricate coordination of genetic and metabolic events between cells via extracellular and intercellular communication mechanisms. The release of a quiescent cell, whether normal or premalignant, from the suppressing effects of communicating neighbors requires the downregulation of intercellular communication via gap junctions, thereby allowing factors that control intracellular events to exceed a critical mass necessary for the cell to either proliferate or undergo apoptosis. Therefore, determining the role an environmental pollutant must play in the multistage carcinogenic process includes mechanisms of epigenetic toxicity such as the effects of a compound on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC). A classic example of a class of compounds in which determination of carcinogenicity focused on genotoxic events and ignored epigenetic events is polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). The study of structure-activity relationships of PAHs has focused exclusively on the genotoxic and tumor-initiating properties of the compound. We report on the structure-activity relationships of two- to four-ringed PAHs on GJIC in a rat liver epithelial cell line. PAHs containing a bay or baylike region were more potent inhibitors of GJIC than the linear PAHs that do not contain these regions. These are some of the first studies of determine the epigenetic toxicity of PAHs at the epigenetic level. Images Figure 1 PMID:9703481

  4. The inner CSF–brain barrier: developmentally controlled access to the brain via intercellular junctions

    PubMed Central

    Whish, Sophie; Dziegielewska, Katarzyna M.; Møllgård, Kjeld; Noor, Natassya M.; Liddelow, Shane A.; Habgood, Mark D.; Richardson, Samantha J.; Saunders, Norman R.

    2015-01-01

    In the adult the interface between the cerebrospinal fluid and the brain is lined by the ependymal cells, which are joined by gap junctions. These intercellular connections do not provide a diffusional restrain between the two compartments. However, during development this interface, initially consisting of neuroepithelial cells and later radial glial cells, is characterized by “strap” junctions, which limit the exchange of different sized molecules between cerebrospinal fluid and the brain parenchyma. Here we provide a systematic study of permeability properties of this inner cerebrospinal fluid-brain barrier during mouse development from embryonic day, E17 until adult. Results show that at fetal stages exchange across this barrier is restricted to the smallest molecules (286Da) and the diffusional restraint is progressively removed as the brain develops. By postnatal day P20, molecules the size of plasma proteins (70 kDa) diffuse freely. Transcriptomic analysis of junctional proteins present in the cerebrospinal fluid-brain interface showed expression of adherens junctional proteins, actins, cadherins and catenins changing in a development manner consistent with the observed changes in the permeability studies. Gap junction proteins were only identified in the adult as was claudin-11. Immunohistochemistry was used to localize at the cellular level some of the adherens junctional proteins of genes identified from transcriptomic analysis. N-cadherin, β - and α-catenin immunoreactivity was detected outlining the inner CSF-brain interface from E16; most of these markers were not present in the adult ependyma. Claudin-5 was present in the apical-most part of radial glial cells and in endothelial cells in embryos, but only in endothelial cells including plexus endothelial cells in adults. Claudin-11 was only immunopositive in the adult, consistent with results obtained from transcriptomic analysis. These results provide information about physiological, molecular

  5. A rapid and sensitive assay of intercellular coupling by voltage imaging of gap junction networks

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background A variety of mechanisms that govern connexin channel gating and permeability regulate coupling in gap junction networks. Mutations in connexin genes have been linked to several pathologies, including cardiovascular anomalies, peripheral neuropathy, skin disorders, cataracts and deafness. Gap junction coupling and its patho–physiological alterations are commonly assayed by microinjection experiments with fluorescent tracers, which typically require several minutes to allow dye transfer to a limited number of cells. Comparable or longer time intervals are required by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching experiments. Paired electrophysiological recordings have excellent time resolution but provide extremely limited spatial information regarding network connectivity. Results Here, we developed a rapid and sensitive method to assay gap junction communication using a combination of single cell electrophysiology, large–scale optical recordings and a digital phase–sensitive detector to extract signals with a known frequency from Vf2.1.Cl, a novel fluorescent sensor of plasma membrane potential. Tests performed in HeLa cell cultures confirmed that suitably encoded Vf2.1.Cl signals remained confined within the network of cells visibly interconnected by fluorescently tagged gap junction channels. We used this method to visualize instantly intercellular connectivity over the whole field of view (hundreds of cells) in cochlear organotypic cultures from postnatal mice. A simple resistive network model reproduced accurately the spatial dependence of the electrical signals throughout the cellular network. Our data suggest that each pair of cochlear non−sensory cells of the lesser epithelial ridge is coupled by ~1500 gap junction channels, on average. Junctional conductance was reduced by 14% in cochlear cultures harboring the T5M mutation of connexin30, which induces a moderate hearing loss in connexin30T5M/T5M knock–in mice, and by 91% in cultures from

  6. Regulation of gap junctional intercellular communication by TCDD in HMEC and MCF-7 breast cancer cells

    SciTech Connect

    Gakhar, Gunjan Schrempp, Diane Nguyen, Thu Annelise

    2009-03-01

    Previous studies suggest that many neoplastic tissues exhibit a decrease in gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC). Many hydrocarbons and organochlorine compounds are environmental pollutants known to be carcinogenic. The effect of an organochlorine compound, TCDD, on GJIC in human breast cell lines has not been established. In the present study, we showed that TCDD causes an inhibition in the gap junctional activity in MCF-7 (breast cancer cells). In MCF-7 cells, an increase in the phosphorylated form of gap junctional protein, connexin 43 (Cx43), and PKC {alpha} was seen in the presence of TCDD. Gap junctional plaque formation was significantly decreased in MCF-7 cells in the presence of TCDD. Immunoprecipitation studies of PKC {alpha} showed that TCDD caused a significant 40% increase in the phosphorylated Cx43 in MCF-7 cells. TCDD also modulated the translocation of PKC {alpha} from the cytosol to the membrane and caused a 2-fold increase in the PKC {alpha} activity at 50 nM TCDD in MCF-7 cells. Calphostin C, an inhibitor of PKC {alpha}, showed a significant inhibition of PKC {alpha} activity in the presence of TCDD. Furthermore, TCDD also caused a decrease in the gap junctional activity and Cx43 protein in human mammary epithelial cells (HMEC). However, we observed a shift in the Cx43 plaques towards the perinuclear membrane in the presence of TCDD by confocal microscopy and Western blot. Overall, these results conclude that TCDD decreases GJIC by phosphorylating Cx43 via PKC {alpha} signaling pathway in MCF-7 cells; however, TCDD decreases the GJIC by affecting the localization of Cx43 in HMEC. These new findings elucidate the differential mode of effect of TCDD in the downregulation of GJIC in HMEC and MCF-7 cells.

  7. Loss of gap junctional intercellular communication in rat lung epithelial cells exposed to quartz particles.

    PubMed

    Ale-Agha, Niloofar; Albrecht, Catrin; Klotz, Lars-Oliver

    2009-12-01

    Chronic inhalation of quartz particles has been implicated in lung diseases including silicosis and cancer. The aim of this study was to investigate whether quartz particles affect gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in rat lung epithelial cells (RLE-6TN). Here, we demonstrate that exposure of RLE-6TN cells to subtoxic doses of DQ12 standard quartz resulted in an up to 55% reduction of GJIC, as determined in a dye transfer assay. We show that connexin-43 (Cx43) is the major connexin responsible for intercellular communication in these lung epithelial cells and that exposure to quartz particles induces a significant internalization of Cx43. Downregulation of GJIC was attenuated by N-acetyl cysteine, suggesting the involvement of reactive oxygen species and/or cellular thiol homeostasis in the regulation of GJIC. Furthermore, an inhibitor of activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases prevented the loss of GJIC in cells exposed to DQ12 quartz, although no direct phosphorylation of Cx43 upon exposure to DQ12 was detected. PMID:19766597

  8. Intercellular calcium signaling in a gap junction-coupled cell network establishes asymmetric neuronal fates in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Schumacher, Jennifer A.; Hsieh, Yi-Wen; Chen, Shiuhwei; Pirri, Jennifer K.; Alkema, Mark J.; Li, Wen-Hong; Chang, Chieh; Chuang, Chiou-Fen

    2012-01-01

    The C. elegans left and right AWC olfactory neurons specify asymmetric subtypes, one default AWCOFF and one induced AWCON, through a stochastic, coordinated cell signaling event. Intercellular communication between AWCs and non-AWC neurons via a NSY-5 gap junction network coordinates AWC asymmetry. However, the nature of intercellular signaling across the network and how individual non-AWC cells in the network influence AWC asymmetry is not known. Here, we demonstrate that intercellular calcium signaling through the NSY-5 gap junction neural network coordinates a precise 1AWCON/1AWCOFF decision. We show that NSY-5 gap junctions in C. elegans cells mediate small molecule passage. We expressed vertebrate calcium-buffer proteins in groups of cells in the network to reduce intracellular calcium levels, thereby disrupting intercellular communication. We find that calcium in non-AWC cells of the network promotes the AWCON fate, in contrast to the autonomous role of calcium in AWCs to promote the AWCOFF fate. In addition, calcium in specific non-AWCs promotes AWCON side biases through NSY-5 gap junctions. Our results suggest a novel model in which calcium has dual roles within the NSY-5 network: autonomously promoting AWCOFF and non-autonomously promoting AWCON. PMID:23093425

  9. Modulatory Effects of Connexin-43 Expression on Gap Junction Intercellular Communications with Mast Cells and Fibroblasts

    PubMed Central

    Pistorio, Ashey L.; Ehrlich, H. Paul

    2011-01-01

    The influence of mast cells upon aberrant wound repair and excessive fibrosis has supportive evidence, but the mechanism for these mast cell activities is unclear. It is proposed that heterocellular gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) between fibroblasts and mast cells directs some fibroblast activities. An in vitro model was used employing a rodent derived peritoneal mast cell line (RMC-1) and human dermal derived fibroblasts. The influence of the expression of the gap junction channel structural protein, connexin 43 (Cx-43) on heterocellular GJIC, the expression of microtubule β-tubulin and microfilament α smooth muscle actin (SMA) were investigated. The knockdown of Cx-43 by siRNA in RMC-1 cells completely blocked GJIC between RMC-1 cells. SiRNA knockdown of Cx-43 within fibroblasts only dampened GJIC between fibroblasts. It appears Cx-43 is the only expressed connexin in RMC-1 cells. Fibroblasts express other connexins that participate in GJIC between fibroblasts in the absence of Cx-43 expression. Heterocellular GJIC between RMC-1 cells and fibroblasts transformed fibroblasts into myofibroblasts, expressing α SMA within cytoplasmic stress fibers. The knockdown of Cx-43 in RMC-1 cells increased β-tubulin expression, but its knockdown in fibroblasts reduced β-tubulin expression. Knocking down the expression of Cx-43 in fibroblasts limited α SMA expression. Cx-43 participation is critical for heterocellular GJIC between mast cells and fibroblasts, which may herald a novel direction for controlling fibrosis. PMID:21328609

  10. Destruction of the hepatocyte junction by intercellular invasion of Leptospira causes jaundice in a hamster model of Weil's disease

    PubMed Central

    Miyahara, Satoshi; Saito, Mitsumasa; Kanemaru, Takaaki; Villanueva, Sharon Y A M; Gloriani, Nina G; Yoshida, Shin-ichi

    2014-01-01

    Weil's disease, the most severe form of leptospirosis, is characterized by jaundice, haemorrhage and renal failure. The mechanisms of jaundice caused by pathogenic Leptospira remain unclear. We therefore aimed to elucidate the mechanisms by integrating histopathological changes with serum biochemical abnormalities during the development of jaundice in a hamster model of Weil's disease. In this work, we obtained three-dimensional images of infected hamster livers using scanning electron microscope together with freeze-cracking and cross-cutting methods for sample preparation. The images displayed the corkscrew-shaped bacteria, which infiltrated the Disse's space, migrated between hepatocytes, detached the intercellular junctions and disrupted the bile canaliculi. Destruction of bile canaliculi coincided with the elevation of conjugated bilirubin, aspartate transaminase and alkaline phosphatase levels in serum, whereas serum alanine transaminase and γ-glutamyl transpeptidase levels increased slightly, but not significantly. We also found in ex vivo experiments that pathogenic, but not non-pathogenic leptospires, tend to adhere to the perijunctional region of hepatocyte couplets isolated from hamsters and initiate invasion of the intercellular junction within 1 h after co-incubation. Our results suggest that pathogenic leptospires invade the intercellular junctions of host hepatocytes, and this invasion contributes in the disruption of the junction. Subsequently, bile leaks from bile canaliculi and jaundice occurs immediately. Our findings revealed not only a novel pathogenicity of leptospires, but also a novel mechanism of jaundice induced by bacterial infection. PMID:24945433

  11. Destruction of the hepatocyte junction by intercellular invasion of Leptospira causes jaundice in a hamster model of Weil's disease.

    PubMed

    Miyahara, Satoshi; Saito, Mitsumasa; Kanemaru, Takaaki; Villanueva, Sharon Y A M; Gloriani, Nina G; Yoshida, Shin-ichi

    2014-08-01

    Weil's disease, the most severe form of leptospirosis, is characterized by jaundice, haemorrhage and renal failure. The mechanisms of jaundice caused by pathogenic Leptospira remain unclear. We therefore aimed to elucidate the mechanisms by integrating histopathological changes with serum biochemical abnormalities during the development of jaundice in a hamster model of Weil's disease. In this work, we obtained three-dimensional images of infected hamster livers using scanning electron microscope together with freeze-cracking and cross-cutting methods for sample preparation. The images displayed the corkscrew-shaped bacteria, which infiltrated the Disse's space, migrated between hepatocytes, detached the intercellular junctions and disrupted the bile canaliculi. Destruction of bile canaliculi coincided with the elevation of conjugated bilirubin, aspartate transaminase and alkaline phosphatase levels in serum, whereas serum alanine transaminase and γ-glutamyl transpeptidase levels increased slightly, but not significantly. We also found in ex vivo experiments that pathogenic, but not non-pathogenic leptospires, tend to adhere to the perijunctional region of hepatocyte couplets isolated from hamsters and initiate invasion of the intercellular junction within 1 h after co-incubation. Our results suggest that pathogenic leptospires invade the intercellular junctions of host hepatocytes, and this invasion contributes in the disruption of the junction. Subsequently, bile leaks from bile canaliculi and jaundice occurs immediately. Our findings revealed not only a novel pathogenicity of leptospires, but also a novel mechanism of jaundice induced by bacterial infection. PMID:24945433

  12. TLR2 mediates gap junctional intercellular communication through connexin-43 in intestinal epithelial barrier injury.

    PubMed

    Ey, Birgit; Eyking, Annette; Gerken, Guido; Podolsky, Daniel K; Cario, Elke

    2009-08-14

    Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) coordinates cellular functions essential for sustaining tissue homeostasis; yet its regulation in the intestine is not well understood. Here, we identify a novel physiological link between Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2 and GJIC through modulation of Connexin-43 (Cx43) during acute and chronic inflammatory injury of the intestinal epithelial cell (IEC) barrier. Data from in vitro studies reveal that TLR2 activation modulates Cx43 synthesis and increases GJIC via Cx43 during IEC injury. The ulcerative colitis-associated TLR2-R753Q mutant targets Cx43 for increased proteasomal degradation, impairing TLR2-mediated GJIC during intestinal epithelial wounding. In vivo studies using mucosal RNA interference show that TLR2-mediated mucosal healing depends functionally on intestinal epithelial Cx43 during acute inflammatory stress-induced damage. Mice deficient in TLR2 exhibit IEC-specific alterations in Cx43, whereas administration of a TLR2 agonist protects GJIC by blocking accumulation of Cx43 and its hyperphosphorylation at Ser368 to prevent spontaneous chronic colitis in MDR1alpha-deficient mice. Finally, adding the TLR2 agonist to three-dimensional intestinal mucosa-like cultures of human biopsies preserves intestinal epithelial Cx43 integrity and polarization ex vivo. In conclusion, Cx43 plays an important role in innate immune control of commensal-mediated intestinal epithelial wound repair. PMID:19528242

  13. Baicalein increases the cytotoxicity of cisplatin by enhancing gap junction intercellular communication.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yiwen; Wang, Qin; Zhang, Suzhi; Zhang, Yuan; Tao, Liang

    2014-07-01

    Drug resistance limits the clinical application of cisplatin, a widely used chemotherapeutic agent. Gap junction (GJ) is a channel that enhances cytotoxicity of certain chemotherapeutic agents. Baicalein is well known for its antitumor activity. This study investigated the effect of baicalein on cisplatin cytotoxicity and the relationship between this effect and the modulation of the GJ function in connexin 26 (Cx26)‑transfected HeLa cells. The sulforhodamine B (SRB) assay was used to examine the effect of baicalein on cell viability. A 'parachute' assay was used to investigate the effect of baicalein on GJ function. The effects of baicalein on cisplatin cytotoxicity and GJ function were assayed by standard colony‑forming assays. The expression of Cx26 was monitored by western blotting. It was observed that exposure of Cx26‑transfected cells to cisplatin reduced the number of colonies formed in low‑density cultures (no GJ formation) and in high‑density cultures (GJ formation), but the toxic effect was greater when cells were seeded at a high density. In the absence of connexin expression or with blockage of connexin channels however, cell density had no effect on cisplatin toxicity. Baicalein significantly enhanced cisplatin cytotoxicity, but this effect required the presence of functional GJs between the cells. In conclusion, the dependence of cisplatin toxicity on cell density is mediated by GJs. Baicalein increases cisplatin cytotoxicity through enhancing GJ intercellular communication. PMID:24736991

  14. Chemopreventive Agents Attenuate Rapid Inhibition of Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication Induced by Environmental Toxicants.

    PubMed

    Babica, Pavel; Čtveráčková, Lucie; Lenčešová, Zuzana; Trosko, James E; Upham, Brad L

    2016-07-01

    Altered gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) has been associated with chemical carcinogenesis, where both chemical tumor promoters and chemopreventive agents (CPAs) are known to conversely modulate GJIC. The aim of this study was to investigate whether attenuation of chemically inhibited GJIC represents a common outcome induced by different CPAs, which could be effectively evaluated using in vitro methods. Rat liver epithelial cells WB-F344 were pretreated with a CPA for either 30 min or 24 h, and then exposed to GJIC-inhibiting concentration of a selected tumor promoter or environmental toxicant [12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA), lindane, fluoranthene, 1,1,1-trichloro-2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethane (DDT), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), or pentachlorophenol]. Out of nine CPAs tested, quercetin and silibinin elicited the most pronounced effects, preventing the dysregulation of GJIC by all the GJIC inhibitors, but DDT. Metformin and curcumin attenuated the effects of three GJIC inhibitors, whereas the other CPAs prevented the effects of two (diallyl sulfide, emodin) or one (indole-3-carbinol, thymoquinone) GJIC inhibitor. Significant attenuation of chemically induced inhibition of GJIC was observed in 27 (50%) out of 54 possible combinations of nine CPAs and six GJIC inhibitors. Our data demonstrate that in vitro evaluation of GJIC can be used as an effective screening tool for identification of chemicals with potential chemopreventive activity. PMID:27266532

  15. Bay or baylike regions of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons were potent inhibitors of Gap junctional intercellular communication.

    PubMed Central

    Weis, L M; Rummel, A M; Masten, S J; Trosko, J E; Upham, B L

    1998-01-01

    Many polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are known carcinogens, and a considerable amount of research has been devoted to predicting the tumor-initiating potential of PAHs based on chemical structure. However, there has been little research into the effects of PAHs on the epigenetic events of tumor promotion and no structural correlation has been made thereof. Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) activity was used in this study as an epigenetic biomarker to determine the structure-activity relationships of twelve different PAHs. The PAHs used were naphthalene, 1-methylnaphthalene, 2-methylnaphthalene, anthracene, 1-methylanthracene, 2-methylanthracene, 9-methylanthracene, 9, 10-dimethylanthracene, phenanthrene, fluorene, 1-methylfluorene, and fluoranthene. Results showed that PAHs containing bay or baylike regions inhibited GJIC more than did the linear PAHs. The nonnaphthalene PAHs were not cytotoxic as determined by a vital dye uptake assay, but the naphthalene compounds were cytotoxic at the higher doses, indicating that the down regulation of GJIC by these naphthalenes could be a consequence of general membrane damage. Inhibition of GJIC by all the inhibitory PAHs was reversed when the cells were refreshed with PAH-free growth medium. Inhibition of GJIC occurred within 0.5-5 min and correlated with the aqueous solubility of the PAHs. The present study revealed that there are structural determinants of epigenetic toxicity as determined by GJIC activity. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10 PMID:9417772

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

    PubMed Central

    Leone, Antonella; Lecci, Raffaella Marina; Durante, Miriana; Piraino, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    On a global scale, jellyfish populations in coastal marine ecosystems exhibit increasing trends of abundance. High-density outbreaks may directly or indirectly affect human economical and recreational activities, as well as public health. As the interest in biology of marine jellyfish grows, a number of jellyfish metabolites with healthy potential, such as anticancer or antioxidant activities, is increasingly reported. In this study, the Mediterranean “fried egg jellyfish” Cotylorhiza tuberculata (Macri, 1778) has been targeted in the search forputative valuable bioactive compounds. A medusa extract was obtained, fractionated, characterized by HPLC, GC-MS and SDS-PAGE and assayed for its biological activity on breast cancer cells (MCF-7) and human epidermal keratinocytes (HEKa). The composition of the jellyfish extract included photosynthetic pigments, valuable ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acids, and polypeptides derived either from jellyfish tissues and their algal symbionts. Extract fractions showed antioxidant activity and the ability to affect cell viability and intercellular communication mediated by gap junctions (GJIC) differentially in MCF-7and HEKa cells. A significantly higher cytotoxicity and GJIC enhancement in MCF-7 compared to HEKa cells was recorded. A putative action mechanism for the anticancer bioactivity through the modulation of GJIC has been hypothesized and its nutraceutical and pharmaceutical potential was discussed. PMID:23697954

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jorgensen, Niklas Rye; Teilmann, Stefan Cuoni; Henriksen, Zanne; Civitelli, Roberto; Sorensen, Ole Helmer; Steinberg, Thomas H.

    2003-01-01

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

  18. The tight junction protein ZO-2 and Janus kinase 1 mediate intercellular communications in vascular smooth muscle cells

    SciTech Connect

    Tkachuk, Natalia; Tkachuk, Sergey; Patecki, Margret; Kusch, Angelika; Korenbaum, Elena; Haller, Hermann; Dumler, Inna

    2011-07-08

    Highlights: {yields} The tight junction protein ZO-2 associates with Jak1 in vascular smooth muscle cells via ZO-2 N-terminal fragment. {yields} Jak1 mediates ZO-2 tyrosine phosphorylation and ZO-2 localization to the sites of homotypic intercellular contacts. {yields} The urokinase receptor uPAR regulates ZO-2/Jak1 functional association. {yields} The ZO-2/Jak1/uPAR signaling complex is required for vascular smooth muscle cells functional network formation. -- Abstract: Recent evidence points to a multifunctional role of ZO-2, the tight junction protein of the MAGUK (membrane-associated guanylate kinase-like) family. Though ZO-2 has been found in cell types lacking tight junction structures, such as vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC), little is known about ZO-2 function in these cells. We provide evidence that ZO-2 mediates specific homotypic cell-to-cell contacts between VSMC. Using mass spectrometry we found that ZO-2 is associated with the non-receptor tyrosine kinase Jak1. By generating specific ZO-2 constructs we further found that the N-terminal fragment of ZO-2 molecule is responsible for this interaction. Adenovirus-based expression of Jak1 inactive mutant demonstrated that Jak1 mediates ZO-2 tyrosine phosphorylation. By means of RNA silencing, expression of Jak1 mutant form and fluorescently labeled ZO-2 fusion protein we further specified that active Jak1, but not Jak1 inactive mutant, mediates ZO-2 localization to the sites of intercellular contacts. We identified the urokinase receptor uPAR as a pre-requisite for these cellular events. Functional requirement of the revealed signaling complex for VSMC network formation was confirmed in experiments using Matrigel and in contraction assay. Our findings imply involvement of the ZO-2 tight junction independent signaling complex containing Jak1 and uPAR in VSMC intercellular communications. This mechanism may contribute to vascular remodeling in occlusive cardiovascular diseases and in arteriogenesis.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Iwase, Yumiko . E-mail: Iwase.Yumiko@mg.m-pharma.co.jp; Fukata, Hideki . E-mail: fukata@faculty.chiba-u.jp; Mori, Chisato . E-mail: cmori@faculty.chiba-u.jp

    2006-05-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2010-01-15

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

  1. Oxidative-Dependent Integration of Signal Transduction with Intercellular Gap Junctional Communication in the Control of Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Trosko, James E.

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Research on oxidative stress focused primarily on determining how reactive oxygen species (ROS) damage cells by indiscriminate reactions with their macromolecular machinery, particularly lipids, proteins, and DNA. However, many chronic diseases are not always a consequence of tissue necrosis, DNA, or protein damage, but rather to altered gene expression. Gene expression is highly regulated by the coordination of cell signaling systems that maintain tissue homeostasis. Therefore, much research has shifted to the understanding of how ROS reversibly control gene expression through cell signaling mechanisms. However, most research has focused on redox regulation of signal transduction within a cell, but we introduce a more comprehensive-systems biology approach to understanding oxidative signaling that includes gap junctional intercellular communication, which plays a role in coordinating gene expression between cells of a tissue needed to maintain tissue homeostasis. We propose a hypothesis that gap junctions are critical in modulating the levels of second messengers, such as low molecular weight reactive oxygen, needed in the transduction of an external signal to the nucleus in the expression of genes. Thus, any comprehensive-systems biology approach to understanding oxidative signaling must also include gap junctions, in which aberrant gap junctions have been clearly implicated in many human diseases. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 11, 297–307. PMID:18834329

  2. The morphologic characteristics of intercellular junctions between normal human liver cells and cells from patients with extrahepatic cholestasis.

    PubMed Central

    Robenek, H.; Herwig, J.; Themann, H.

    1980-01-01

    In freeze-fracture replicas the bile canaliculi of normal human livers showed a lumen of rather constant size with parallel margins. The zonula occludens consists of a complex anastomosing network of intramembranous ridges on the P face and complementary grooves of the E face of the plasmalemma of liver parenchymal cells. The zonula occludens is usually composed of three to five ridges running parallel to the lumen of the bile canaliculus that are surrounded by a looser meshwork of variable orientation. All tight junctions observed in control replicas appeared as continuous barriers without any disruptions. Extrahepatic cholestasis produced considerable morphologic alterations in the canaliculi and tight junctions. The lumen of the canliculi enlarged, and the microvilli disappeared. Side branches, irregularities, and outpouchings of the canalicular membrane extending into the cytoplasm of the hepatocytes were frequently observed. The complexity of the branching pattern and the number of strands in the zonulae occludentes changed extensively. Junctional strands away from their usual pericanalicular location were present on the lateral surface of the plasma membrane. The altered zonulae occludents contain regions in which the strands had a fragmented appearance or were completely absent. These discontinuities in the junctional meshwork provide a direct pathway between the lumen of the bile canaliculus and the intercellular space. They strongly suggest a leakage of the canaliculosinusoidal barrier. Of further interest is the diffuse aggregation of the usually randomly distributed intramembranous particles of the P face of the plasmalemma. The aggregates consist of 10-50 individual particles. Concomitantly, the desmosomes appeared to be more numerous than normally. The number and structure of gap junctions remained unaffected. The results of this investigation are discussed in relation to those obtained after experimental bile duct ligation in rats. Images Figure 8

  3. Actin-interacting protein 1 controls assembly and permeability of intestinal epithelial apical junctions

    PubMed Central

    Baranwal, Somesh

    2015-01-01

    Adherens junctions (AJs) and tight junctions (TJs) are crucial regulators of the integrity and restitution of the intestinal epithelial barrier. The structure and function of epithelial junctions depend on their association with the cortical actin cytoskeleton that, in polarized epithelial cells, is represented by a prominent perijunctional actomyosin belt. The assembly and stability of the perijunctional cytoskeleton is controlled by constant turnover (disassembly and reassembly) of actin filaments. Actin-interacting protein (Aip) 1 is an emerging regulator of the actin cytoskeleton, playing a critical role in filament disassembly. In this study, we examined the roles of Aip1 in regulating the structure and remodeling of AJs and TJs in human intestinal epithelium. Aip1 was enriched at apical junctions in polarized human intestinal epithelial cells and normal mouse colonic mucosa. Knockdown of Aip1 by RNA interference increased the paracellular permeability of epithelial cell monolayers, decreased recruitment of AJ/TJ proteins to steady-state intercellular contacts, and attenuated junctional reassembly in a calcium-switch model. The observed defects of AJ/TJ structure and functions were accompanied by abnormal organization and dynamics of the perijunctional F-actin cytoskeleton. Moreover, loss of Aip1 impaired the apico-basal polarity of intestinal epithelial cell monolayers and inhibited formation of polarized epithelial cysts in 3-D Matrigel. Our findings demonstrate a previously unanticipated role of Aip1 in regulating the structure and remodeling of intestinal epithelial junctions and early steps of epithelial morphogenesis. PMID:25792565

  4. Subsets of ATP-sensitive potassium channel (KATP) inhibitors increase gap junctional intercellular communication in metastatic cancer cell lines independent of SUR expression

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) is a process whereby cells share molecules and nutrients with each other by physical contact through cell membrane pores. In tumor cells, GJIC is often altered, suggesting that this process may be important in the context of cancer. Certain ion chan...

  5. Reversible inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication, synchronous contraction, and synchronism of intracellular Ca2+ fluctuation in cultured neonatal rat cardiac myocytes by heptanol.

    PubMed

    Kimura, H; Oyamada, Y; Ohshika, H; Mori, M; Oyamada, M

    1995-10-01

    We analyzed by Fotonic Sensor, a fiber-optic displacement measurement instrument, the effects of heptanol on synchronized contraction of primary neonatal rat cardiac myocytes cultured at confluent density. We also examined the effect of heptanol on the changes in gap junctional intercellular communication by using the microinjection dye transfer method, and on intercellular Ca2+ fluctuation by confocal laser scanning microscopy of myocytes loaded with the fluorescent Ca2+ indicator fluo 3. In addition, we studied expression, phosphorylation, and localization of the major cardiac gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) using immunofluorescence and Western blotting. At Day 6 of culture, numerous myocytes exhibited spontaneous, synchronous contractions, excellent dye coupling, and synchronized intracellular Ca2+ fluctuations. We treated the cells with 1.5, 2.0, 2.5, and 3.0 mmol/liter heptanol. With 1.5 mmol/liter heptanol, we could not observe significant effects on spontaneous contraction of myocytes. At 3.0 mmol/liter, the highest concentration used in the current experiment, heptanol inhibited synchronous contractions and even after washing out of heptanol, synchronous contraction was not rapidly recovered. On the other hand, at the intermediate concentrations of 2.0 and 2.5 mmol/liter, heptanol reversely inhibited synchronized contraction, gap junctional intercellular communication, and synchronization of intracellular Ca2+ fluctuations in the myocytes without preventing contraction and changes of intracellular Ca2+ in individual cells. Brief exposure (5-20 min) to heptanol (2.0 mmol/liter) did not cause detectable changes in the expression, phosphorylation, or localization of Cx43, despite strong inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication. These results suggest that gap junctional intercellular communication plays an important role in synchronous intracellular Ca2+ fluctuations, which facilitate synchronized contraction of cardiac myocytes. PMID

  6. [Cryofractographic study of intercellular junctions in the populations of agar-cultivated Bordetella pertussis].

    PubMed

    Vysotskiĭ, V V; Vaisman, I Sh; Efimova, O G; Chemurzieva, N V

    1985-09-01

    The characteristic feature of replicas obtained from the freeze-fractures of B. pertussis unfixed cultures developing on casein charcoal agar for 1-7 days is the associative growth of highly polymorphic cells, ensured by the ramified system of intercellular connections (IC) formed by the derivatives of the outer layers of the cell wall. This proves that the associative location of bacterial cells, linked by numerous IC, in the preparation is not the artefact appearing in the process of their chemical fixation. In replicas obtained from the freeze-fractures of B. pertussis cultures, previously fixed with glutaraldehyde, osmic acid and uranyl acetate, oval cells with the cytoplasm having a relatively homogeneous structure and with the smoothed-out three-layer cell wall prevail. As a rule, IC are limited to the sites of direct contacts between individual cells. PMID:2866645

  7. Gap junction as an intercellular glue: Emerging roles in cancer EMT and metastasis.

    PubMed

    Mao, Xiao-Yuan; Li, Qiu-Qi; Gao, Yuan-Feng; Zhou, Hong-Hao; Liu, Zhao-Qian; Jin, Wei-Lin

    2016-10-10

    Metastasis is a common phenomenon in the progression and dissemination of cancer. It is estimated that metastasis accounts for 90% cancer-related mortality. Although the formation of tumor metastasis is relatively well understood, the underlying molecular mechanisms responsible for the emergence of aggressive cancer phenotype are still elusive. Figuring out the mechanisms by which cancer cells evade from the tumor is beneficial for obtaining novel and effectively therapeutic approaches. Primary tumors are composed of various subpopulations of cells with heterogeneous metastatic characteristics and the occurrence of metastatic dissemination is mainly dependent upon the interactions between tumor and the surrounding microenvironment. Tumor microenvironment (TME) such as extracellular matrix, macrophages, fibroblasts, stem cells and endothelial cells can orchestrate events critical to tumor evolution toward metastasis. GJ serves as an important communication between tumor cells and stromal cells. Increased GJs coupling blocks metastatic potential in some cancer animal models such as breast cancer and melanoma. Besides, epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is also a crucial step in the metastatic process and there are signs that GJs contribute to cell adhesion and migration (the pathological feature of EMT) in breast cancer. Therefore, we propose that GJ serves as an intercellular glue to suppress EMT and cancer metastasis. PMID:27490999

  8. Bisphosphonate osteo-necrosis of the jaws [BONJ], from defective function of oral epithelial intercellular junctions?

    PubMed

    Touyz, Louis Z G

    2015-05-01

    Bone osteonecrosis of the jaws (BONJ) is prevalent when diseases are treated with high bisphosphonate doses. The mouth is unique in that it has epithelial covered bony protuberances jutting into an infective environment. Should epithelium over these bony prominences be disrupted, abraded or ulcerated by trauma, extraction or therapy, not only will the mucosa not heal, but in vulnerable cases, where less-vital bone is present, there is development of BONJ. BONJ development is explained by BP's depleting available calcium ions from healthy functioning of epithelial gap junctions and disrupting the balance between osteogenesis and osteoclasis. PMID:25697117

  9. Modulation of Cx43 and Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication by Androstenedione in Rat Polycystic Ovary and Granulosa Cells in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Talhouk, Rabih; Tarraf, Charbel; Kobrossy, Laila; Shaito, Abdallah; Bazzi, Samer; Bazzoun, Dana; El-Sabban, Marwan

    2012-01-01

    Background Gap-junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) is implicated in physicological processes and it is vitally important for granulosa cell (GC) differentiation and oocyte growth. We investigated the expression of connexin 43 (Cx43), a gap junctional protein, in normal and androstenedione-induced polycystic ovary (PCO), the effects of androstenedione on Cx43 expression, GJIC and progesterone production in granulosa cells in vitro. Methods Isolated GCs from rat ovary were supplemented with FSH and dripped with EHS-matrix (EHS-drip) in culture media, were treated with physiological (10−7 M) or pathological (10−5 M) androstenedione concentrations to induce differentiation. Cx43 protein levels were assessed by Western blotting. Immunohistochemistry was also used to determine the localization of Cx43 in GCs and corpus luteum (CL) of controls and PCOs. Differentiation of GCs was determined by progesterone assay and Lucifer yellow dye transfer for GJIC status. The degree of significance of variations between the results was analyzed by ANOVA using SPSS (version 11.5; 2002). Results Cx43 localized in the GC layer of both the control and PCOs. Its protein levels were upregulated in PCO rat ovaries. GCs in culture with or without androstenedione had a punctate membranous distribution of Cx43. However, androstenedione increased GJIC and upregulated progesterone and Cx43 protein levels. Inhibiting GJIC by 18-α GA in androstenedione-treated GCs caused partial inhibition of progesterone production, suggesting a possible role of GJIC in mediating the action of androstenedione on GC differentiation. Conclusion This study presented a suitable culture model for polycystic ovary syndrome and showed that Cx43 and GJIC might contribute to the pathogenesis of polycystic ovary syndrome. PMID:23926521

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

    SciTech Connect

    Zou, Hui; Zhuo, Liling; Han, Tao; Hu, Di; Yang, Xiaokang; Wang, Yi; Yuan, Yan; Gu, Jianhong; Bian, Jianchun; Liu, Xuezhong; Liu, Zongping

    2015-04-17

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

  11. Effect of perfluorooctane sulfonate on viability, maturation and gap junctional intercellular communication of porcine oocytes in vitro.

    PubMed

    Domínguez, A; Salazar, Z; Arenas, E; Betancourt, M; Ducolomb, Y; González-Márquez, H; Casas, E; Teteltitla, M; Bonilla, E

    2016-09-01

    Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) is a broadly used man-made surfactant whose long half-life has led to bioaccumulation. This perfluorinated compound is ubiquitous in human body fluids. PFOS concentrations as high as 26μM in plasma have been reported in occupationally exposed populations, and high levels of PFOS in human follicular fluid have been associated with subfertility. However, the effect of PFOS on the maturation of oocytes in mammals has not been reported to date. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of PFOS during oocyte maturation. Results indicate that PFOS inhibits oocyte viability (Lethal Concentration50=32μM) and maturation (inhibition of maturation50=22μM) at physiologically relevant concentrations. In order to evaluate the mechanisms of oocyte maturation inhibition by PFOS, gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) between oocytes and granulosa cells was assessed. GJIC between granulosa cells and the oocyte was significantly affected during the first 8h of maturation. However, the inhibitory effect of PFOS on GJIC was not due to an alteration on the expression of connexin genes Cx43, Cx45 and Cx60. These findings suggest that occupationally exposed populations could be at risk, and that PFOS might affect oocyte maturation by interfering the GJIC in the cumulus-oocyte complexes during the first hours of maturation. PMID:27233358

  12. The effects of anthracene and methylated anthracenes on gap junctional intercellular communication in rat liver epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Upham, B L; Weis, L M; Rummel, A M; Masten, S J; Trosko, J E

    1996-12-01

    Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), many of which are known carcinogens, are derived from the pyrolysis of organic materials. A rich source of PAHs is cigarette smoke, which contains methylated anthracenes and phenanthrenes as the predominant PAHs. The tumor-promoting activity of cigarette smoke has been well documented. The down-regulation of gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) by nongenotoxic chemicals and several oncogenes has been implicated in tumor promotion. Therefore, we determined the effects of the three isomers of methylanthracene on GJIC in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells. Anthracene and 2-methylanthracene did not significantly inhibit GJIC, whereas anthracene methylated in the 1 or 9 position reversibly inhibited GJIC with I50 values of 22 and 36 microM, respectively. Inhibition occurred within 15 min. In conclusion, the biological effect of methylanthracene depends on the ring position of the methyl group, and these inhibitory isomers could play a potential role in tumor promotion of methylated PAH-rich mixtures such as cigarette smoke and crude oil products. PMID:8954755

  13. Morphological transformation and effect on gap junction intercellular communication in Syrian hamster embryo cells as screening tests for carcinogens devoid of mutagenic activity.

    PubMed

    Rivedal, E; Mikalsen, S O; Sanner, T

    2000-04-01

    A large fraction of chemicals observed to cause cancer in experimental animals is devoid of mutagenic activity. It is therefore of importance to develop methods that can be used to detect and study environmental carcinogenic agents that do not interact directly with DNA. Previous studies have indicated that induction of in vitro cell transformation and inhibition of gap junction intercellular communication are endpoints that could be useful for the detection of non-genotoxic carcinogens. In the present work, 13 compounds [chlordane, Arochlor 1260, di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate, 1,1,1-trichloro-2, 2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethane, limonene, sodium fluoride, ethionine, o-anisidine, benzoyl peroxide, o-vanadate, phenobarbital, 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol 13-acetate and clofibrate] have been tested for their ability to induce morphological transformation and affect intercellular communication in Syrian hamster embryo cells. The substances were selected on the basis of being proven or suspected non-genotoxic carcinogens, and thus difficult to detect in short-term tests. The data show that nine of the 13 compounds induced morphological transformation, and seven of the 13 inhibited intercellular communication in hamster embryo cells. Taken together, 12 of the 13 substances either induced transformation or caused inhibition of communication. The data suggest that the combined use of morphological transformation and gap junction intercellular communication in Syrian hamster embryo cells may be beneficial when screening for non-genotoxic carcinogens. PMID:10793297

  14. Lateral assembly of N-cadherin drives tissue integrity by stabilizing adherens junctions

    PubMed Central

    Garg, S.; Fischer, S. C.; Schuman, E. M.; Stelzer, E. H. K.

    2015-01-01

    Cadherin interactions ensure the correct registry and anchorage of cells during tissue formation. Along the plasma membrane, cadherins form inter-junctional lattices via cis- and trans-dimerization. While structural studies have provided models for cadherin interactions, the molecular nature of cadherin binding in vivo remains unexplored. We undertook a multi-disciplinary approach combining live cell imaging of three-dimensional cell assemblies (spheroids) with a computational model to study the dynamics of N-cadherin interactions. Using a loss-of-function strategy, we demonstrate that each N-cadherin interface plays a distinct role in spheroid formation. We found that cis-dimerization is not a prerequisite for trans-interactions, but rather modulates trans-interfaces to ensure tissue stability. Using a model of N-cadherin junction dynamics, we show that the absence of cis-interactions results in low junction stability and loss of tissue integrity. By quantifying the binding and unbinding dynamics of the N-cadherin binding interfaces, we determined that mutating either interface results in a 10-fold increase in the dissociation constant. These findings provide new quantitative information on the steps driving cadherin intercellular adhesion and demonstrate the role of cis-interactions in junction stability. PMID:25589573

  15. Scattering form factors for self-assembled network junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, T.; Safran, S. A.; Sottmann, T.; Strey, R.

    2007-11-01

    The equilibrium microstructures in microemulsions and other self-assembled systems show complex, connected shapes such as symmetric bicontinuous spongelike structures and asymmetric bicontinuous networks formed by cylinders interconnected at junctions. In microemulsions, these cylinder network microstructures may mediate the structural transition from a spherical or globular phase to the bicontinuous microstructure. To understand the structural and statistical properties of such cylinder network microstructures as measured by scattering experiments, models are needed to extract the real-space structure from the scattering data. In this paper, we calculate the scattering functions appropriate for cylinder network microstructures. We focus on such networks that contain a high density of network junctions that connect the cylindrical elements. In this limit, the network microstructure can be regarded as an assembly of randomly oriented, closed packed network junctions (i.e., the cylinder scattering contributions are neglected). Accordingly, the scattering spectrum of the network microstructure can be calculated as the product of the junction number density, the junction form factor, which describes the scattering from the surface of a single junction, and a structure factor, which describes the local correlations of different junctions due to junction interactions (including their excluded volume). This approach is applied to analyze the scattering data from a bicontinuous microemulsion with equal volumes of water and oil. In a second approach, we included the cylinder scattering contribution in the junction form factor by calculating the scattering intensity of Y junctions to which three rods with spherical cross section are attached. The respective theoretical predictions are compared with results of neutron scattering measurements on a water-in-oil microemulsion with a connected microstructure.

  16. Gingko biloba extracts protect auditory hair cells from cisplatin-induced ototoxicity by inhibiting perturbation of gap junctional intercellular communication.

    PubMed

    Choi, S J; Kim, S W; Lee, J B; Lim, H J; Kim, Y J; Tian, C; So, H S; Park, R; Choung, Y-H

    2013-08-01

    Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) may play an important role in the hearing process. Cisplatin is an anticancer drug that causes hearing loss and Gingko biloba extracts (EGb 761) have been used as an antioxidant and enhancer for GJIC. The purpose of this study was to examine the efficiency of EGb 761 in protecting against cisplatin-induced apoptosis and disturbance of GJIC. House Ear Institute-Organ of Corti 1 auditory cells were cultured and treated with cisplatin (50 μM) and EGb (300 μg/ml) for 24h, and then analyzed by immunocytochemistry (Annexin V/propidium iodide) and Western blots. GJIC was evaluated by scrape-loading dye transfer (SLDT). Basal turn organ of Corti (oC) explants from neonatal (p3) rats were exposed to cisplatin (1-10 μM) and EGb (50-400 μg/ml). The number of intact hair cells was counted by co-labeling with phalloidin and MyoVIIa. EGb prevented cisplatin-induced apoptosis in immunostaining and decreased caspase 3 and poly-ADP-ribose polymerase bands, which were increased in cisplatin-treated cells in Western blots. EGb prevented abnormal intracellular locations of connexin (Cx) 26, 30, 31, and 43 in cells treated with cisplatin and increased quantities of Cx bands. EGb also prevented cisplatin-induced disturbance of GJIC in SLDT. In oC explants, EGb significantly prevented hair cell damage induced by cisplatin. In animal studies, EGb significantly prevented cisplatin-induced hearing loss across 16 and 32 kHz. These results show that cisplatin induces ototoxicity including hearing loss as well as down-regulation of GJIC and inhibition of Cxs in auditory cells. EGb prevents hearing loss in cisplatin-treated rats by inhibiting down-regulation of Cx expression and GJIC. The disturbance of GJIC or Cx expression may be one of the important mechanisms of cisplatin-induced ototoxicity. PMID:23583760

  17. Structural and functional changes in gap junctional intercellular communication in a rat model of overactive bladder syndrome induced by partial bladder outlet obstruction

    PubMed Central

    ZHOU, FENGHAI; LI, HAIYUAN; ZHOU, CHUAN; LV, HAIDI; MA, YULEI; WANG, YANGMIN; SONG, BO

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the association between connexin (Cx)43 levels and alterations in gap junctional mediation of intercellular communication in overactive bladder syndrome (OAB), and to examine the effects of connexin inhibitor on this condition. Adult female Wistar rats with OAB following partial bladder outlet obstruction (PBBO) (OAB group, n=37) and sham-operated rats (control group, n=17) were studied. The ultrastructure of the rat detrusor was observed by transmission electron microscopy and the protein expression levels of Cx43 were analyzed using western blot analysis. Furthermore, bladder detrusor cells in both groups were cultured and cells in the OAB group were randomly divided into ten groups. In nine of these groups, 18-β glycyrrhetinic acid (18β-GA) was administered at various doses and durations. All groups were compared using fluorescence redistribution after photobleaching and a laser scanning confocal microscope. Cystometry demonstrated that gap junctions were an abundant mechanism among adjacent cells, and Cx43 protein expression levels were increased in the OAB group following 6 weeks of obstruction, as compared with the control group. Mean fluorescence recovery rates in the OAB group were significantly increased, as compared with the control group (P<0.01). Mean fluorescence recovery rates were noted following 18β-GA administration. These results suggested that upregulation of Cx43 induces structural and functional alterations in gap junctional intercellular communication following PBOO, and connexin inhibitors may be a novel therapeutic strategy for the clinical treatment of OAB. PMID:27284295

  18. Suspended InAs nanowire Josephson junctions assembled via dielectrophoresis.

    PubMed

    Montemurro, D; Stornaiuolo, D; Massarotti, D; Ercolani, D; Sorba, L; Beltram, F; Tafuri, F; Roddaro, S

    2015-09-25

    We present a novel technique for the realization of suspended Josephson junctions based on InAs semiconductor nanowires. The devices are assembled using a technique of drop-casting guided by dielectrophoresis, which allows one to finely align the nanostructures on top of the electrodes. The proposed architecture removes the interaction between the nanowire and the substrate which is known to influence disorder and the orientation of the Rashba vector. The relevance of this approach in view of the implementation of hybrid Josephson junctions based on semiconducting nanowires coupled with high-temperature superconductors is discussed. PMID:26335273

  19. Suspended InAs nanowire Josephson junctions assembled via dielectrophoresis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montemurro, D.; Stornaiuolo, D.; Massarotti, D.; Ercolani, D.; Sorba, L.; Beltram, F.; Tafuri, F.; Roddaro, S.

    2015-09-01

    We present a novel technique for the realization of suspended Josephson junctions based on InAs semiconductor nanowires. The devices are assembled using a technique of drop-casting guided by dielectrophoresis, which allows one to finely align the nanostructures on top of the electrodes. The proposed architecture removes the interaction between the nanowire and the substrate which is known to influence disorder and the orientation of the Rashba vector. The relevance of this approach in view of the implementation of hybrid Josephson junctions based on semiconducting nanowires coupled with high-temperature superconductors is discussed.

  20. Alix-mediated assembly of the actomyosin–tight junction polarity complex preserves epithelial polarity and epithelial barrier

    PubMed Central

    Campos, Yvan; Qiu, Xiaohui; Gomero, Elida; Wakefield, Randall; Horner, Linda; Brutkowski, Wojciech; Han, Young-Goo; Solecki, David; Frase, Sharon; Bongiovanni, Antonella; d'Azzo, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Maintenance of epithelial cell polarity and epithelial barrier relies on the spatial organization of the actin cytoskeleton and proper positioning/assembly of intercellular junctions. However, how these processes are regulated is poorly understood. Here we reveal a key role for the multifunctional protein Alix in both processes. In a knockout mouse model of Alix, we identified overt structural changes in the epithelium of the choroid plexus and in the ependyma, such as asymmetrical cell shape and size, misplacement and abnormal beating of cilia, blebbing of the microvilli. These defects culminate in excessive cell extrusion, enlargement of the lateral ventricles and hydrocephalus. Mechanistically, we find that by interacting with F-actin, the Par complex and ZO-1, Alix ensures the formation and maintenance of the apically restricted actomyosin–tight junction complex. We propose that in this capacity Alix plays a role in the establishment of apical–basal polarity and in the maintenance of the epithelial barrier. PMID:27336173

  1. Alix-mediated assembly of the actomyosin-tight junction polarity complex preserves epithelial polarity and epithelial barrier.

    PubMed

    Campos, Yvan; Qiu, Xiaohui; Gomero, Elida; Wakefield, Randall; Horner, Linda; Brutkowski, Wojciech; Han, Young-Goo; Solecki, David; Frase, Sharon; Bongiovanni, Antonella; d'Azzo, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Maintenance of epithelial cell polarity and epithelial barrier relies on the spatial organization of the actin cytoskeleton and proper positioning/assembly of intercellular junctions. However, how these processes are regulated is poorly understood. Here we reveal a key role for the multifunctional protein Alix in both processes. In a knockout mouse model of Alix, we identified overt structural changes in the epithelium of the choroid plexus and in the ependyma, such as asymmetrical cell shape and size, misplacement and abnormal beating of cilia, blebbing of the microvilli. These defects culminate in excessive cell extrusion, enlargement of the lateral ventricles and hydrocephalus. Mechanistically, we find that by interacting with F-actin, the Par complex and ZO-1, Alix ensures the formation and maintenance of the apically restricted actomyosin-tight junction complex. We propose that in this capacity Alix plays a role in the establishment of apical-basal polarity and in the maintenance of the epithelial barrier. PMID:27336173

  2. Resveratrol induces chemosensitization to 5-fluorouracil through up-regulation of intercellular junctions, Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and apoptosis in colorectal cancer.

    PubMed

    Buhrmann, Constanze; Shayan, Parviz; Kraehe, Patricia; Popper, Bastian; Goel, Ajay; Shakibaei, Mehdi

    2015-11-01

    5-Fluorouracil (5-FU), a common chemotherapeutic agent used for the treatment of colorectal cancer (CRC), by itself has inadequate response rates; highlighting the need for novel and improved treatment regimens for these patients. Resveratrol, a naturally-occurring polyphenol, has been linked with chemosensitizing potential and anticancer properties; however, the underlying mechanisms for these effects remain poorly understood. The effect of resveratrol in parental CRC cell lines (HCT116, SW480) and their corresponding isogenic 5-FU-chemoresistant derived clones (HCT116R, SW480R) was examined by MTT assays, intercellular junction formation and apoptosis by electron- and immunoelectron microscopy, nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-κB) and NF-κB regulated gene products by western blot analysis in a 3D-alginate microenvironment. Resveratrol blocked the proliferation of all four CRC cell lines and synergized the invasion inhibitory effects of 5-FU. Interestingly, resveratrol induced a transition from 5-FU-induced formation of microvilli to a planar cell surface, which was concomitant with up-regulation of desmosomes, gap- and tight junctions (claudin-2) and adhesion molecules (E-cadherin) expression in HCT116 and HCT116R cells. Further, resveratrol significantly attenuated drug resistance through inhibition of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) factors (decreased vimentin and slug, increased E-cadherin) and down-regulation of NF-κB activation and its translocation to the nucleus and abolished NF-κB-regulated gene end-products (MMP-9, caspase-3). Moreover, this suppression was mediated through inhibition of IκBα kinase and IκBα phosphorylation and degradation. Our results demonstrate that resveratrol can potentiate the anti-tumor effects of 5-FU on CRC cells by chemosensitizing them, inhibiting an EMT phenotype via up-regulation of intercellular junctions and by down-regulation of NF-κB pathway. PMID:26310874

  3. Beta-sitosterol from psyllium seed husk (Plantago ovata Forsk) restores gap junctional intercellular communication in Ha-ras transfected rat liver cells.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Yasushi; Yoshikawa, Noriko; Hiroki, Ikumi; Sato, Kenji; Ohtsuki, Kozo; Chang, Chia-Cheng; Upham, Brad L; Trosko, James E

    2005-01-01

    We purified compounds from the husks of psyllium seeds (Plantago ovata Forsk; desert Indian wheat), beginning with an ethanol extraction then followed by HP-20 and silica gel chromatography, which restored gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in v-Ha-ras transfected rat liver epithelial WB-F344 cell line (WB-Ha-ras). GJIC was assessed by a scrape loading dye transfer assay. The active compound was identified as beta-sitosterol based on gas chromatography retention times and electron ionization mass spectroscopy (EI-MS) spectrum of authentic beta-sitosterol. Authentic beta-sitosterol restored GJIC in the tumorigenic WB-Ha-ras GJIC-deficient cells at a dose of 2.4 microM. In addition, a similar phytosterol, stigmasterol, also restored GJIC, albeit at a lower activity. beta-sitosterol and stigmasterol increased the level of connexin43 protein (Cx43) and restored phosphorylation of Cx43 to levels similar to the parental nontransfected cell line. We concluded that the restoration of intercellular communication in the GJIC-deficient, tumorigenic WB-Ha-ras cell line by the ethanol soluble fraction of psyllium seed husks is largely due to the presence of the phytosterol, beta-sitosterol. We discuss implications for dietary modulation of cancer by beta-sitosterol. PMID:15860444

  4. To build a synapse: signaling pathways in neuromuscular junction assembly

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Haitao; Xiong, Wen C.; Mei, Lin

    2010-01-01

    Synapses, as fundamental units of the neural circuitry, enable complex behaviors. The neuromuscular junction (NMJ) is a synapse type that forms between motoneurons and skeletal muscle fibers and that exhibits a high degree of subcellular specialization. Aided by genetic techniques and suitable animal models, studies in the past decade have brought significant progress in identifying NMJ components and assembly mechanisms. This review highlights recent advances in the study of NMJ development, focusing on signaling pathways that are activated by diffusible cues, which shed light on synaptogenesis in the brain and contribute to a better understanding of muscular dystrophy. PMID:20215342

  5. Connexins: a myriad of functions extending beyond assembly of gap junction channels

    PubMed Central

    Dbouk, Hashem A; Mroue, Rana M; El-Sabban, Marwan E; Talhouk, Rabih S

    2009-01-01

    Connexins constitute a large family of trans-membrane proteins that allow intercellular communication and the transfer of ions and small signaling molecules between cells. Recent studies have revealed complex translational and post-translational mechanisms that regulate connexin synthesis, maturation, membrane transport and degradation that in turn modulate gap junction intercellular communication. With the growing myriad of connexin interacting proteins, including cytoskeletal elements, junctional proteins, and enzymes, gap junctions are now perceived, not only as channels between neighboring cells, but as signaling complexes that regulate cell function and transformation. Connexins have also been shown to form functional hemichannels and have roles altogether independent of channel functions, where they exert their effects on proliferation and other aspects of life and death of the cell through mostly-undefined mechanisms. This review provides an updated overview of current knowledge of connexins and their interacting proteins, and it describes connexin modulation in disease and tumorigenesis. PMID:19284610

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

    PubMed Central

    Trosko, James E.

    2016-01-01

    The first anaerobic organism extracted energy for survival and reproduction from its source of nutrients, with the genetic means to ensure protection of its individual genome but also its species survival. While it had a means to communicate with its community via simple secreted molecules (“quorum sensing”), the eventual shift to an aerobic environment led to multi-cellular metazoan organisms, with evolutionary-selected genes to form extracellular matrices, stem cells, stem cell niches, and a family of gap junction or “connexin” genes. These germinal and somatic stem cells responded to extracellular signals that triggered intra-cellular signaling to regulate specific genes out of the total genome. These extra-cellular induced intra-cellular signals also modulated gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in order to regulate the new cellular functions of symmetrical and asymmetrical cell division, cell differentiation, modes of cell death, and senescence. Within the hierarchical and cybernetic concepts, differentiated by neurons organized in the brain of the Homo sapiens, the conscious mind led to language, abstract ideas, technology, myth-making, scientific reasoning, and moral decision–making, i.e., the creation of culture. Over thousands of years, this has created the current collision between biological and cultural evolution, leading to the global “metabolic disease” crisis. PMID:27314399

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

    PubMed

    Trosko, James E

    2016-01-01

    The first anaerobic organism extracted energy for survival and reproduction from its source of nutrients, with the genetic means to ensure protection of its individual genome but also its species survival. While it had a means to communicate with its community via simple secreted molecules ("quorum sensing"), the eventual shift to an aerobic environment led to multi-cellular metazoan organisms, with evolutionary-selected genes to form extracellular matrices, stem cells, stem cell niches, and a family of gap junction or "connexin" genes. These germinal and somatic stem cells responded to extracellular signals that triggered intra-cellular signaling to regulate specific genes out of the total genome. These extra-cellular induced intra-cellular signals also modulated gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in order to regulate the new cellular functions of symmetrical and asymmetrical cell division, cell differentiation, modes of cell death, and senescence. Within the hierarchical and cybernetic concepts, differentiated by neurons organized in the brain of the Homo sapiens, the conscious mind led to language, abstract ideas, technology, myth-making, scientific reasoning, and moral decision-making, i.e., the creation of culture. Over thousands of years, this has created the current collision between biological and cultural evolution, leading to the global "metabolic disease" crisis. PMID:27314399

  8. ROCK activity regulates functional tight junction assembly during blastocyst formation in porcine parthenogenetic embryos

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Jeongwoo

    2016-01-01

    The Rho-associated coiled-coil-containing protein serine/threonine kinases 1 and 2 (ROCK1 and ROCK2) are Rho subfamily GTPase downstream effectors that regulate cell migration, intercellular adhesion, cell polarity, and cell proliferation by stimulating actin cytoskeleton reorganization. Inhibition of ROCK proteins affects specification of the trophectoderm (TE) and inner cell mass (ICM) lineages, compaction, and blastocyst cavitation. However, the molecules involved in blastocyst formation are not known. Here, we examined developmental competence and levels of adherens/tight junction (AJ/TJ) constituent proteins, such as CXADR, OCLN, TJP1, and CDH1, as well as expression of their respective mRNAs, after treating porcine parthenogenetic four-cell embryos with Y-27632, a specific inhibitor of ROCK, at concentrations of 0, 10, 20, 100 µM for 24 h. Following this treatment, the blastocyst development rates were 39.1, 20.7, 10.0, and 0% respectively. In embryos treated with 20 µM treatment, expression levels of CXADR, OCLN, TJP1, and CDH1 mRNA and protein molecules were significantly reduced (P < 0.05). FITC-dextran uptake assay revealed that the treatment caused an increase in TE TJ permeability. Interestingly, the majority of the four-cell and morula embryos treated with 20 µM Y-27643 for 24 h showed defective compaction and cavitation. Taken together, our results indicate that ROCK activity may differentially affect assembly of AJ/TJs as well as regulate expression of genes encoding junctional proteins. PMID:27077008

  9. Lactic acid inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication in in vitro astrocytes as measured by fluorescence recovery after laser photobleaching

    SciTech Connect

    Anders, J.J.

    1988-01-01

    Lactic acid can permeate plasma membranes, causing intracellular acidosis. Gap junctions are sensitive to pHi and can be reversibly uncoupled by weak acids. In this study, dye coupling between in vitro astrocytes, presumably mediated by gap junctions, was measured in the absence and presence of lactic acid. Fluorescence recovery after laser photobleaching (gap-FRAP analysis) was used to measure dye coupling. Astrocytes bathed in Eagle's minimum essential medium (EMEM) with lactic acid, pHo 5.5-6, showed no difference in their dye coupling (mean recovery of fluorescence 30%) when compared to control astrocytes (mean recovery of fluorescence 26%). However, 24 mM lactic acid in EMEM, pHo 4.5, decreased dye coupling (mean recovery of fluorescence 2.0%). This effect occurred within 5 min of treatment. When lactic acid-EMEM, pH 4.5, was removed from astrocytes after 30 min and the cells were incubated in EMEM for 24 hr, decreased coupling was not reversed (mean recovery 4.0%). When lactic acid-treated astrocytes were incubated in EMEM for 48 hr, the mean recovery of fluorescence increased to 15% (i.e., 42% of the recovery seen in controls). These observations suggest that brief exposure to high concentrations of lactic acid can have immediate and long-lasting effects on glial gap junctional communication. Under pathological circumstances, such a sequence could be initiated, and this might impair astrocytic control of the central nervous system microenvironment mediated by spatial buffering.

  10. AMP-activated protein kinase regulates the assembly of epithelial tight junctions.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Li; Li, Ji; Young, Lawrence H; Caplan, Michael J

    2006-11-14

    AMP activated protein kinase (AMPK), a sensor of cellular energy status in all eukaryotic cells, is activated by LKB1-dependent phosphorylation. Recent studies indicate that activated LKB1 induces polarity in epithelial cells and that this polarization is accompanied by the formation of tight junction structures. We wished to determine whether AMPK also contributes to the assembly of tight junctions in the epithelial cell polarization process. We found that AMPK is activated during calcium-induced tight junction assembly. Activation of AMPK by 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide ribonucleoside facilitates tight junction assembly under conditions of normal extracellular Ca2+ concentrations and initiates tight junction assembly in the absence of Ca2+ as revealed by the relocation of zonula occludens 1, the establishment of transepithelial electrical resistance, and the paracellular flux assay. Expression of a dominant negative AMPK construct inhibits tight junction assembly in MDCK cells, and this defect in tight junction assembly can be partially ameliorated by rapamycin. These results suggest that AMPK plays a role in the regulation of tight junction assembly. PMID:17088526

  11. Reversal of the TPA-induced inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication by Chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) extracts: effects on MAP kinases.

    PubMed

    Park, Jung-Ran; Park, Joon-Suk; Jo, Eun-Hye; Hwang, Jae-Woong; Kim, Sun-Jung; Ra, Jeong-Chan; Aruoma, Okezie I; Lee, Yong-Soon; Kang, Kyung-Sun

    2006-01-01

    Chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) has continued to receive attention as a folk medicine with indications for the treatment of cancers and digestive diseases. The anticarcinogenic effect of Chaga mushroom extract was investigated using a model system of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in WB-F344 normal rat liver epithelial cells. The cells were pre-incubated with Chaga mushroom extracts (5, 10, 20 microg/ml) for 24 h and this was followed by co-treatment with Chaga mushroom extracts and TPA (12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate, 10 ng/ml) for 1 h. The inhibition of GJIC by TPA (12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate), promoter of cancer, was prevented with treatment of Chaga mushroom extracts. Similarly, the increased phosphorylated ERK1/2 and p38 protein kinases were markedly reduced in Chaga mushroom extracts-treated cells. There was no change in the JNK kinase protein level, suggesting that Chaga mushroom extracts could only block the activation of ERK1/2 and p38 MAP kinase. The Chaga mushroom extracts further prevented the inhibition of GJIC through the blocking of Cx43 phosphorylation. Indeed cell-to-cell communication through gap junctional channels is a critical factor in the life and death balance of cells because GJIC has an important function in maintaining tissue homeostasis through the regulation of cell growth, differentiation, apoptosis and adaptive functions of differentiated cells. Thus Chaga mushroom may act as a natural anticancer product by preventing the inhibition of GJIC through the inactivation of ERK1/2 and p38 MAP kinase. PMID:17012771

  12. The NLRP3 Inflammasome Is a Pathogen Sensor for Invasive Entamoeba histolytica via Activation of α5β1 Integrin at the Macrophage-Amebae Intercellular Junction

    PubMed Central

    Mortimer, Leanne; Moreau, France; Cornick, Steve; Chadee, Kris

    2015-01-01

    Entamoeba histolytica (Eh) is an extracellular protozoan parasite of humans that invades the colon to cause life-threatening intestinal and extra-intestinal amebiasis. Colonized Eh is asymptomatic, however, when trophozoites adhere to host cells there is a considerable inflammatory response that is critical in the pathogenesis of amebiasis. The host and/or parasite factors that trigger the inflammatory response to invading Eh are not well understood. We recently identified that Eh adherence to macrophages induces inflammasome activation and in the present study we sought to determine the molecular events upon contact that coordinates this response. Here we report that Eh contact-dependent activation of α5β1 integrin is critical for activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome. Eh-macrophage contact triggered recruitment of α5β1 integrin and NLRP3 into the intercellular junction, where α5β1 integrin underwent activation by an integrin-binding cysteine protease on the parasite surface, termed EhCP5. As a result of its activation, α5β1 integrin induced ATP release into the extracellular space through opening of pannexin-1 channels that signalled through P2X7 receptors to deliver a critical co-stimulatory signal that activated the NLRP3 inflammasome. Both the cysteine protease activity and integrin-binding domain of EhCP5 were required to trigger α5β1 integrin that led to ATP release and NLRP3 inflammasome activation. These findings reveal engagement of α5β1 integrin across the parasite-host junction is a key regulatory step that initiates robust inflammatory responses to Eh. We propose that α5β1 integrin distinguishes Eh direct contact and functions with NLRP3 as pathogenicity sensor for invasive Eh infection. PMID:25955828

  13. Involvement of YAP, TAZ and HSP90 in Contact Guidance and Intercellular Junction Formation in Corneal Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Morgan, Joshua T.; Tuyen, Binh C.; Rose, Brad W.; Reilly, Christopher M.; Russell, Paul; Murphy, Christopher J.

    2014-01-01

    The extracellular environment possesses a rich milieu of biophysical and biochemical signaling cues that are simultaneously integrated by cells and influence cellular phenotype. Yes-associated protein (YAP) and transcriptional co-activator with PDZ-binding motif (WWTR1; TAZ), two important signaling molecules of the Hippo pathway, have been recently implicated as nuclear relays of cytoskeletal changes mediated by substratum rigidity and topography. These proteins intersect with other important intracellular signaling pathways (e.g. Wnt and TGFβ). In the cornea, epithelial cells adhere to the stroma through a 3-dimensional topography-rich basement membrane, with features in the nano-submicron size-scale that are capable of profoundly modulating a wide range of fundamental cell behaviors. The influences of substratum-topography, YAP/TAZ knockdown, and HSP90 inhibition on cell morphology, YAP/TAZ localization, and the expression of TGFβ2 and CTGF, were investigated. The results demonstrate (a) that knockdown of TAZ enhances contact guidance in a YAP dependent manner, (b) that CTGF is predominantly regulated by YAP and not TAZ, and (c) that TGFβ2 is regulated by both YAP and TAZ in these cells. Additionally, inhibition of HSP90 resulted in nuclear localization and subsequent transcriptional-activation of YAP, formation of cell-cell junctions and co-localization of E-cadherin and β-catenin at adherens junctions. Results presented in this study reflect the complexities underlying the molecular relationships between the cytoskeleton, growth factors, heat shock proteins, and co-activators of transcription that impact mechanotransduction. The data reveal the importance of YAP/TAZ on the cell behaviors, and gene and protein expression. PMID:25290150

  14. Soyasaponins prevent H₂O₂-induced inhibition of gap junctional intercellular communication by scavenging reactive oxygen species in rat liver cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jiading; Sun, Suxia; Zha, Dingsheng; Wu, Jiguo; Mao, Limei; Deng, Hong; Chu, Xinwei; Luo, Haiji; Zha, Longying

    2014-01-01

    It appears to be more practical and effective to prevent carcinogenesis by targeting the tumor promotion stage. Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) is strongly involved in carcinogenesis, especially the tumor promotion stage. Considerable interest has been focused on the chemoprevention activities of soyasaponin (SS), which are major phytochemicals found in soybeans and soy products. However, less is known about the preventive effects of SS (especially SS with different chemical structures) against tumor promoter-induced inhibition of GJIC. We investigated the protective effects of SS-A1, SS-A2, and SS-I against hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-induced GJIC inhibition and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in Buffalo rat liver (BRL) cells. The present results clearly show for the first time that SS-A1, SS-A2, and SS-I prevent the H2O2-induced GJIC inhibition by scavenging ROS in BRL cells in a dose-dependent manner at the concentration range of from 25 to 100 μg/mL. Soyasaponins attenuated the H2O2-induced ROS through potentiating the activities of superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase. This may be an important mechanism by which SS protects against tumor promotion. In addition, various chemical structures of SS appear to exhibit different protective abilities against GJIC inhibition. This may partly attribute to their differences in ROS-scavenging activities. PMID:25268883

  15. Red paprika (Capsicum annuum L.) and its main carotenoids, capsanthin and β-carotene, prevent hydrogen peroxide-induced inhibition of gap-junction intercellular communication.

    PubMed

    Kim, Ji-Sun; Lee, Woo-Moon; Rhee, Han Cheol; Kim, Suna

    2016-07-25

    This study was conducted to investigate the protective effect of red paprika extract (RPE) and its main carotenoids, namely, capsanthin (CST) and β-carotene (BCT), on the H2O2-induced inhibition of gap-junction intercellular communication (GJIC) in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells (WB cells). We found that pre-treatment with RPE, CST and BCT protected WB cells from H2O2-induced inhibition of GJIC. RPE, CST and BCT not only recovered connexin 43 (Cx43) mRNA expression but also prevented phosphorylation of Cx43 protein by H2O2 treatment. RPE attenuated the phosphorylation of ERK, p38 and JNK, whereas pre-treatment with CST and BCT only attenuated the phosphorylation of ERK and p38 and did not affect JNK in H2O2-treated WB cells. RPE, CST and BCT significantly suppressed the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in H2O2-treated cells compared to untreated WB cells. These results suggest that dietary intake of red paprika might be helpful for lowering the risk of diseases caused by oxidative stress. PMID:27154496

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

    PubMed Central

    Rakib, Md. Abdur; Lee, Won Sup; Kim, Gon Sup; Han, Jae Hee; Kim, Jeong Ok

    2013-01-01

    The major conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) isomers, c9,t11-CLA and t10,c12-CLA, have anticancer effects; however, the exact mechanisms underlying these effects are unknown. Evidence suggests that reversal of reduced gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in cancer cells inhibits cell growth and induces cell death. Hence, we determined that CLA isomers enhance GJIC in human MCF-7 breast cancer cells and investigated the underlying molecular mechanisms. The CLA isomers significantly enhanced GJIC of MCF-7 cells at 40 μM concentration, whereas CLA inhibited cell growth and induced caspase-dependent apoptosis. CLA increased connexin43 (Cx43) expression both at the transcriptional and translational levels. CLA inhibited nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) activity and enhanced reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. No significant difference was observed in the efficacy of c9,t11-CLA and t10,c12-CLA. These results suggest that the anticancer effect of CLA is associated with upregulation of GJIC mediated by enhanced Cx43 expression through inactivation of NF-κB and generation of ROS in MCF-7 cells. PMID:24371460

  17. Bystander effects of PC12 cells treated with Pb²⁺ depend on ROS-mitochondria-dependent apoptotic signaling via gap-junctional intercellular communication.

    PubMed

    Guo, Shu; Zhou, Jin; Chen, Xuemei; Yu, Yunjiang; Ren, Mingzhong; Hu, Guocheng; Liu, Yun; Zou, Fei

    2014-08-17

    The demonstration of bystander effect, which means injured cells propagate damage to neighboring cells, in whole organisms has clear implication of the potential relevance of the non-targeted response to human health. Here we show that 10 μM lead acetate, the optimum concentration for inducing apoptosis confirmed by the expression levels of Bax and Bcl-2, can also induce rat pheochromocytoma (PC12) cells to exert bystander effects to neighboring cells. In a novel co-culture system, GFP-PC12 (Pb(2+)) cells, which were stable transfected with EF1A-eGFP and pre-exposed with lead acetate, were co-cultured with unexposed PC12 cells at a 1:5 ratio. Parachute assays demonstrated the functional gap-junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) formed between Pb(2+)-exposed and unexposed cells. The Pb(2+)-exposed cells induced very similar effects on neighboring unexposed cells to apoptosis coincide with intracellular ROS generation and the collapse of mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψm). Furthermore, carbenoxolone (CBX), a blocker of GJIC, inhibited the bystander effects. The results indicate that the Pb(2+)-induced insults propagate through GJIC between PC12 cells, while inducing the bystander cells to apoptosis via ROS-mitochondria-dependent apoptotic signaling. PMID:24960054

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

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Organotin compounds (OTCs) have been widely used as stabilizers in the production of plastic, agricultural pesticides, antifoulant plaints and wood preservation. The toxicity of triphenyltin (TPT) compounds was known for their embryotoxic, neurotoxic, genotoxic and immunotoxic effects in mammals. The carcinogenicity of TPT was not well understood and few studies had discussed the effects of OTCs on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) of cells. Method In the present study, the effects of triphenyltin chloride (TPTC) on GJIC in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells were evaluated, using the scrape-loading dye transfer technique. Results TPTC inhibited GJIC after a 30-min exposure in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. Pre-incubation of cells with the protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor did not modify the response, but the specific MEK 1 inhibitor PD98059 and PI3K inhibitor LY294002 decreased substantially the inhibition of GJIC by TPTC. After WB-F344 cells were exposed to TPTC, phosphorylation of Cx43 increased as seen in Western blot analysis. Conclusions These results show that TPTC inhibits GJIC in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells by altering the Cx43 protein expression through both MAPK and PI3-kinase pathways. PMID:20591183

  19. ASSEMBLY AND CHARACTERIZATION OF 8-ARM AND 12-ARM DNA BRANCHED JUNCTIONS

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xing

    2012-01-01

    Branched DNA molecules can be assembled into objects and networks directed by sticky-ended cohesion. The connectivity of these species is limited by the number of arms flanking the branch point. To date, the only branched junctions constructed contain six or fewer arms. We report the construction of DNA branched junctions that contain either 8 or 12 double helical arms surrounding a branch point. The design of the 8-arm junction expoits the limits of a previous approach to thwart branch migration, but the design of the 12-arm junction uses a new to principle achieve this end. The 8-arm junction is stable with 16 nucleotide pairs per arm, but the 12-arm junction has been stabilized by 24 nucleotide pairs per arm. Ferguson analysis of these junctions in combination with three, four, five, and six-arm junctions indicates a linear increase in friction constant as the number of arms increases; the four-arm junction migrates anomalously at 4°C., suggesting stacking of its domains. All strands in both the 8-arm and 12-arm junctions show similar responses to hydroxyl radical autofootprinting analysis, indicating that they lack any dominant stacking structures. The stability of the 12-arm junction demonstrates that the number of arms in a junction is not limited to the case of having adjacent identical base pairs flanking the junction. The ability to construct eight-arm and twelve-arm junctions increases the number of objects, graphs and networks that can be built from branched DNA components. In principle, the stick structure corresponding to cubic close packing is now a possible target for assembly by DNA nanotechnology. PMID:17564446

  20. Junctional Adhesion Molecule A Promotes Epithelial Tight Junction Assembly to Augment Lung Barrier Function

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Leslie A.; Ward, Christina; Kwon, Mike; Mitchell, Patrick O.; Quintero, David A.; Nusrat, Asma; Parkos, Charles A.; Koval, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Epithelial barrier function is maintained by tight junction proteins that control paracellular fluid flux. Among these proteins is junctional adhesion molecule A (JAM-A), an Ig fold transmembrane protein. To assess JAM-A function in the lung, we depleted JAM-A in primary alveolar epithelial cells using shRNA. In cultured cells, loss of JAM-A caused an approximately 30% decrease in transepithelial resistance, decreased expression of the tight junction scaffold protein zonula occludens 1, and disrupted junctional localization of the structural transmembrane protein claudin-18. Consistent with findings in other organs, loss of JAM-A decreased β1 integrin expression and impaired filamentous actin formation. Using a model of mild systemic endoxotemia induced by i.p. injection of lipopolysaccharide, we report that JAM-A−/− mice showed increased susceptibility to pulmonary edema. On injury, the enhanced susceptibility of JAM-A−/− mice to edema correlated with increased, transient disruption of claudin-18, zonula occludens 1, and zonula occludens 2 localization to lung tight junctions in situ along with a delay in up-regulation of claudin-4. In contrast, wild-type mice showed no change in lung tight junction morphologic features in response to mild systemic endotoxemia. These findings support a key role of JAM-A in promoting tight junction homeostasis and lung barrier function by coordinating interactions among claudins, the tight junction scaffold, and the cytoskeleton. PMID:25438062

  1. INHIBITION OF INTERCELLULAR COMMUNICATION BETWEEN MOUSE HEPATOCYTES BY TUMOR PROMOTERS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Tumor promoters can inhibit gap junction-mediated intercellular communication in cultured cells. The authors evaluated the effects of tumor promoters on intercellular communication between B6C3F1 mouse hepatocytes in primary culture. Intercellular communication between donor and ...

  2. Regulation of connexins by the ubiquitin system: Implications for intercellular communication and cancer.

    PubMed

    Leithe, Edward

    2016-04-01

    The connexins constitute a family of integral membrane proteins that form intercellular channels, enabling adjacent cells to directly exchange ions and small molecules. The connexin channels assemble into distinct plasma membrane domains known as gap junctions. Intercellular communication via gap junctions has an important role in regulating cell growth and differentiation, as well as in maintaining tissue homeostasis. Connexin43 (Cx43), the most ubiquitously expressed connexin isoform in human tissues, has been shown to act as a tumor suppressor and is frequently downregulated during cancer development. Cx43 has a short half-life, and modulation of the Cx43 turnover rate represents an important mechanism by which the level of gap junctional intercellular communication is regulated under basal conditions. Moreover, many growth factors, oncogenes, and tumor promoters are potent inducers of Cx43 endocytosis and endolysosomal degradation, resulting in loss of gap junctions. Emerging evidence indicates that the ubiquitin system has a major role in these processes. Recent studies have shown that ubiquitination is also involved in the autophagy-mediated degradation of Cx43 in a process mediated by the proto-oncogenic E3 ubiquitin ligase NEDD4. Moreover, ubiquitination of connexins has been implicated in modulating the level of intercellular communication via gap junctions in response to oxidative stress. This review article provides an overview of our current understanding of the role of the ubiquitin system in the regulation of connexins and discusses how the malfunction of these processes may contribute to the loss of intercellular communication via gap junctions during carcinogenesis. PMID:26855059

  3. Three-dimensional podocyte-endothelial cell co-cultures: Assembly, validation, and application to drug testing and intercellular signaling studies.

    PubMed

    Li, Min; Corbelli, Alessandro; Watanabe, Shojiro; Armelloni, Silvia; Ikehata, Masami; Parazzi, Valentina; Pignatari, Chiara; Giardino, Laura; Mattinzoli, Deborah; Lazzari, Lorenza; Puliti, Aldamaria; Cellesi, Francesco; Zennaro, Cristina; Messa, Piergiorgio; Rastaldi, Maria Pia

    2016-04-30

    Proteinuria is a common symptom of glomerular diseases and is due to leakage of proteins from the glomerular filtration barrier, a three-layer structure composed by two post-mitotic highly specialized and interdependent cell populations, i.e. glomerular endothelial cells and podocytes, and the basement membrane in between. Despite enormous progresses made in the last years, pathogenesis of proteinuria remains to be completely uncovered. Studies in the field could largely benefit from an in vitro model of the glomerular filter, but such a system has proved difficult to realize. Here we describe a method to obtain and utilize a three-dimensional podocyte-endothelial co-culture which can be largely adopted by the scientific community because it does not rely on special instruments nor on the synthesis of devoted biomaterials. The device is composed by a porous membrane coated on both sides with type IV collagen. Adhesion of podocytes on the upper side of the membrane has to be preceded by VEGF-induced maturation of endothelial cells on the lower side. The co-culture can be assembled with podocyte cell lines as well as with primary podocytes, extending the use to cells derived from transgenic mice. An albumin permeability assay has been extensively validated and applied as functional readout, enabling rapid drug testing. Additionally, the bottom of the well can be populated with a third cell type, which multiplies the possibilities of analyzing more complex glomerular intercellular signaling events. In conclusion, the ease of assembly and versatility of use are the major advantages of this three-dimensional model of the glomerular filtration barrier over existing methods. The possibility to run a functional test that reliably measures albumin permeability makes the device a valid companion in several research applications ranging from drug screening to intercellular signaling studies. PMID:26924225

  4. Kinase programs spatiotemporally regulate gap junction assembly and disassembly: Effects on wound repair.

    PubMed

    Solan, Joell L; Lampe, Paul D

    2016-02-01

    Gap junctions are highly ordered plasma membrane domains that are constantly assembled, remodeled and turned over due to the short half-life of connexins, the integral membrane proteins that form gap junctions. Connexin 43 (Cx43), by far the most widely expressed connexin, is phosphorylated at multiple serine residues in the cytoplasmic, C-terminal region allowing for exquisite cellular control over gap junctional communication. This is evident during epidermal wounding where spatiotemporal changes in connexin expression occur as cells are instructed whether to die, proliferate or migrate to promote repair. Early gap junctional communication is required for initiation of keratinocyte migration, but accelerated Cx43 turnover is also critical for proper wound healing at later stages. These events are controlled via a "kinase program" where sequential phosphorylation of Cx43 leads to reductions in Cx43's half-life and significant depletion of gap junctions from the plasma membrane within several hours. The complex regulation of gap junction assembly and turnover affords several steps where intervention might speed wound healing. PMID:26706150

  5. Laminin-111 stimulates proliferation of mouse embryonic stem cells through a reduction of gap junctional intercellular communication via RhoA-mediated Cx43 phosphorylation and dissociation of Cx43/ZO-1/drebrin complex.

    PubMed

    Suh, Han Na; Kim, Mi Ok; Han, Ho Jae

    2012-07-20

    Gap junctions within extracellular matrix (ECM)-defined boundaries ensure synchronous activity between cells destined to become functional mediators that regulate cell behavior. However, the role of ECM in connexin (Cx) function in mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) has not been elucidated. Therefore, we examined the role of laminin-111 in the control of Cx43 functions and related signal pathways in mESCs. ECM components (laminin-111, fibronectin, and collagen I) increased Cx43 phosphorylation and decreased Lucifer yellow (Ly) diffusion. In addition, laminin-111 increased the proliferation index through reduction of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC), which was confirmed by 18α-glycyrrhetinic acid (18α-GA). Laminin-111 increased phosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK)/Src and protein kinase C (PKC), which were inhibited by integrin β1 antibody (Ab) and laminin receptor-1 (LR-1) Ab, respectively. In addition, inhibition of both FAK/Src and PKC blocked Cx43 phosphorylation. Laminin-111 increased the Ras homolog gene family, member A (RhoA) activation, which was blocked by FAK/Src and PKC inhibitors, suggesting the existence of parallel pathways that merge at RhoA. Inhibition of RhoA reversed the laminin-111-induced increase of Cx43 phosphorylation and reduction of GJIC. Laminin-111 also stimulated the dissociation of Cx43/ZO-1 complex followed by disruption of Cx43/drebrin and Cx43/F-actin complexes, which were reversed by C3 (RhoA inhibitor). ZO-1 small interfering (si) RNA significantly decreased Ly diffusion. Moreover, laminin-111 decreased Cx43 labeling at the intercellular junction, whereas pretreatment with degradation inhibitors (lysosomal protease inhibitor, chloroquine; proteasome inhibitor, lactacystin) increased Cx43 expression, reversely. In conclusion, laminin-111 stimulated mESC proliferation through a reduction of GJIC via RhoA-mediated Cx43 phosphorylation and Cx43/ZO-1/drebrin complex instability-mediated Cx43 degradation

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-01

    The present report evaluates the advantages of using the gold nanoparticle-mediated laser perforation (GNOME LP) technique as a computer-controlled cell optoperforation to introduce Lucifer yellow (LY) into cells in order to analyze the gap junction coupling in cell monolayers. To permeabilize GM-7373 endothelial cells grown in a 24 multiwell plate with GNOME LP, a laser beam of 88 μm in diameter was applied in the presence of gold nanoparticles and LY. After 10 min to allow dye uptake and diffusion through gap junctions, we observed a LY-positive cell band of 179 ± 8 μm width. The presence of the gap junction channel blocker carbenoxolone during the optoperforation reduced the LY-positive band to 95 ± 6 μm. Additionally, a forskolin-related enhancement of gap junction coupling, recently found using the scrape loading technique, was also observed using GNOME LP. Further, an automatic cell imaging and a subsequent semi-automatic quantification of the images using a java-based ImageJ-plugin were performed in a high-throughput sequence. Moreover, the GNOME LP was used on cells such as RBE4 rat brain endothelial cells, which cannot be mechanically scraped as well as on three-dimensionally cultivated cells, opening the possibility to implement the GNOME LP technique for analysis of gap junction coupling in tissues. We conclude that the GNOME LP technique allows a high-throughput automated analysis of gap junction coupling in cells. Moreover this non-invasive technique could be used on monolayers that do not support mechanical scraping as well as on cells in tissue allowing an in vivo/ex vivo analysis of gap junction coupling. PMID:26310434

  7. On-chip molecular electronic plasmon sources based on self-assembled monolayer tunnel junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Wei; Wang, Tao; Chu, Hong-Son; Wu, Lin; Liu, Rongrong; Sun, Song; Phua, Wee Kee; Wang, Lejia; Tomczak, Nikodem; Nijhuis, Christian A.

    2016-04-01

    Molecular electronic control over plasmons offers a promising route for on-chip integrated molecular plasmonic devices for information processing and computing. To move beyond the currently available technologies and to miniaturize plasmonic devices, molecular electronic plasmon sources are required. Here, we report on-chip molecular electronic plasmon sources consisting of tunnel junctions based on self-assembled monolayers sandwiched between two metallic electrodes that excite localized plasmons, and surface plasmon polaritons, with tunnelling electrons. The plasmons originate from single, diffraction-limited spots within the junctions, follow power-law distributed photon statistics, and have well-defined polarization orientations. The structure of the self-assembled monolayer and the applied bias influence the observed polarization. We also show molecular electronic control of the plasmon intensity by changing the chemical structure of the molecules and by bias-selective excitation of plasmons using molecular diodes.

  8. The assembly and maintenance of epithelial junctions in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Lynch, Allison M.; Hardin, Jeff

    2010-01-01

    The epithelial tissues of the C. elegans embryo provide a “minimalist” system for examining phylogenetically conserved proteins that function in epithelial polarity and cell-cell adhesion in a multicellular organism. In this review, we provide an overview of three major molecular complexes at the apical surface of epithelial cells in the C. elegans embryo: the cadherin-catenin complex, the more basal DLG-1/AJM-1 complex, and the apical membrane domain, which shares similarities with the subapical complex in Drosophila and the PAR/aPKC complex in vertebrates. We discuss how the assembly of these complexes contributes to epithelial polarity and adhesion, proteins that act as effectors and/or regulators of each subdomain, and how these complexes functionally interact during embryonic morphogenesis. Although much remains to be clarified, significant progress has been made in recent years to clarify the role of these protein complexes in epithelial morphogenesis, and suggests that C. elegans will continue to be a fruitful system in which to elucidate functional roles for these proteins in a living embryo. PMID:19273138

  9. Specializations of intercellular junctions are associated with the presence and absence of hair cell regeneration in ears from six vertebrate classes.

    PubMed

    Burns, Joseph C; Collado, Maria Sol; Oliver, Eric R; Corwin, Jeffrey T

    2013-04-15

    Sensory hair cell losses lead to hearing and balance deficits that are permanent for mammals, but temporary for nonmammals because supporting cells in their ears give rise to replacement hair cells. In mice and humans, vestibular supporting cells grow exceptionally large circumferential F-actin belts and their junctions express E-cadherin in patterns that strongly correlate with postnatal declines in regeneration capacity. In contrast, chicken supporting cells retain thin F-actin belts throughout life and express little E-cadherin. To determine whether the junctions in chicken ears might be representative of other ears that also regenerate hair cells, we investigated inner ears from dogfish sharks, zebrafish, bullfrogs, Xenopus, turtles, and the lizard, Anolis. As in chickens, the supporting cells in adult zebrafish, Xenopus, and turtle ears retained thin circumferential F-actin belts and expressed little E-cadherin. Supporting cells in adult sharks and bullfrogs also retained thin belts, but were not tested for E-cadherin. Supporting cells in adult Anolis exhibited wide, but porous webs of F-actin and strong E-cadherin expression. Anolis supporting cells also showed some cell cycle reentry when cultured. The results reveal that the association between thin F-actin belts and low E-cadherin is shared by supporting cells in anamniotes, turtles, and birds, which all can regenerate hair cells. Divergent junctional specializations in supporting cells appear to have arisen independently in Anolis and mammals. The presence of webs of F-actin at the junctions in Anolis appears compatible with supporting cell proliferation, but the solid reinforcement of the F-actin belts in mammals is associated with its absence. PMID:23124808

  10. Equivalent circuits of a self-assembled monolayer-based tunnel junction determined by impedance spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Sangeeth, C S Suchand; Wan, Albert; Nijhuis, Christian A

    2014-08-01

    The electrical characteristics of molecular tunnel junctions are normally determined by DC methods. Using these methods it is difficult to discriminate the contribution of each component of the junctions, e.g., the molecule-electrode contacts, protective layer (if present), or the SAM, to the electrical characteristics of the junctions. Here we show that frequency-dependent AC measurements, impedance spectroscopy, make it possible to separate the contribution of each component from each other. We studied junctions that consist of self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of n-alkanethiolates (S(CH2)(n-1)CH3 ≡ SC(n) with n = 8, 10, 12, or 14) of the form Ag(TS)-SC(n)//GaO(x)/EGaIn (a protective thin (~0.7 nm) layer of GaO(x) forms spontaneously on the surface of EGaIn). The impedance data were fitted to an equivalent circuit consisting of a series resistor (R(S), which includes the SAM-electrode contact resistance), the capacitance of the SAM (C(SAM)), and the resistance of the SAM (R(SAM)). A plot of R(SAM) vs n(C) yielded a tunneling decay constant β of 1.03 ± 0.04 n(C)(-1), which is similar to values determined by DC methods. The value of C(SAM) is similar to previously reported values, and R(S) (2.9-3.6 × 10(-2) Ω·cm(2)) is dominated by the SAM-top contact resistance (and not by the conductive layer of GaO(x)) and independent of n(C). Using the values of R(SAM), we estimated the resistance per molecule r as a function of n(C), which are similar to values obtained by single molecule experiments. Thus, impedance measurements give detailed information regarding the electrical characteristics of the individual components of SAM-based junctions. PMID:25036915

  11. Lymphocytes accelerate epithelial tight junction assembly: role of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK).

    PubMed

    Tang, Xiao Xiao; Chen, Hao; Yu, Sidney; Zhang, Li; Caplan, Michael J; Chan, Hsiao Chang

    2010-01-01

    The tight junctions (TJs), characteristically located at the apicolateral borders of adjacent epithelial cells, are required for the proper formation of epithelial cell polarity as well as for sustaining the mucosal barrier to the external environment. The observation that lymphocytes are recruited by epithelial cells to the sites of infection [1] suggests that they may play a role in the modulation of epithelial barrier function and thus contribute to host defense. To test the ability of lymphocytes to modulate tight junction assembly in epithelial cells, we set up a lymphocyte-epithelial cell co-culture system, in which Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells, a well-established model cell line for studying epithelial TJ assembly [2], were co-cultured with mouse lymphocytes to mimic an infection state. In a typical calcium switch experiment, the TJ assembly in co-culture was found to be accelerated compared to that in MDCK cells alone. This accelaration was found to be mediated by AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). AMPK activation was independent of changes in cellular ATP levels but it was found to be activated by the pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-alpha. Forced suppression of AMPK, either with a chemical inhibitor or by knockdown, abrogated the accelerating effect of lymphocytes on TJ formation. Similar results were also observed in a co-culture with lymphocytes and Calu-3 human airway epithelial cells, suggesting that the activation of AMPK may be a general mechanism underlying lymphocyte-accelerated TJ assembly in different epithelia. These results suggest that signals from lymphocytes, such as cytokines, facilitate TJ assembly in epithelial cells via the activation of AMPK. PMID:20808811

  12. Ser364 of connexin43 and the upregulation of gap junction assembly by cAMP

    PubMed Central

    TenBroek, Erica M.; Lampe, Paul D.; Solan, Joell L.; Reynhout, James K.; Johnson, Ross G.

    2001-01-01

    The assembly of gap junctions (GJs) is a process coordinated by growth factors, kinases, and other signaling molecules. GJ assembly can be enhanced via the elevation of cAMP and subsequent stimulation of connexon trafficking to the plasma membrane. To study the positive regulation of GJ assembly, fibroblasts derived from connexin (Cx)43 knockout (KO) and wild-type (WT) mice were transfected with WT Cx43 (WTCx43) or mutant Cx43. GJ assembly between untransfected WT fibroblasts or stably transfected WTCx43/KO fibroblasts was increased two- to fivefold by 8Br-cAMP, and this increase could be blocked by inhibition of cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) or truncation of the Cx43 COOH terminus (CT). Although serine 364 (S364) of the Cx43 CT was determined to be a major site of phosphorylation, the molar ratio of Cx43 phosphorylation was not increased by 8Br-cAMP. Importantly, GJ assembly between either S364ECx43/KO or S364ECx43/WT fibroblasts was stimulated by 8Br-cAMP, but that between S364ACx43/KO or S364PCx43/KO fibroblasts was not stimulated, indicating that phosphorylation or a negative charge at S364 is required for enhancement of GJ assembly by cAMP. Furthermore, GJ assembly between S364ACx43/WT fibroblasts could be stimulated by 8Br-cAMP, but could not be between S364PCx43/WT fibroblasts. Thus, S364PCx43 interferes with enhanced GJ assembly when coexpressed with WTCx43. PMID:11756479

  13. Phosphorylation on Ser-279 and Ser-282 of connexin43 regulates endocytosis and gap junction assembly in pancreatic cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Kristen E.; Mitra, Shalini; Katoch, Parul; Kelsey, Linda S.; Johnson, Keith R.; Mehta, Parmender P.

    2013-01-01

    The molecular mechanisms regulating the assembly of connexins (Cxs) into gap junctions are poorly understood. Using human pancreatic tumor cell lines BxPC3 and Capan-1, which express Cx26 and Cx43, we show that, upon arrival at the cell surface, the assembly of Cx43 is impaired. Connexin43 fails to assemble, because it is internalized by clathrin-mediated endocytosis. Assembly is restored upon expressing a sorting-motif mutant of Cx43, which does not interact with the AP2 complex, and by expressing mutants that cannot be phosphorylated on Ser-279 and Ser-282. The mutants restore assembly by preventing clathrin-mediated endocytosis of Cx43. Our results also document that the sorting-motif mutant is assembled into gap junctions in cells in which the expression of endogenous Cx43 has been knocked down. Remarkably, Cx43 mutants that cannot be phosphorylated on Ser-279 or Ser-282 are assembled into gap junctions only when connexons are composed of Cx43 forms that can be phosphorylated on these serines and forms in which phosphorylation on these serines is abolished. Based on the subcellular fate of Cx43 in single and contacting cells, our results document that the endocytic itinerary of Cx43 is altered upon cell–cell contact, which causes Cx43 to traffic by EEA1-negative endosomes en route to lysosomes. Our results further show that gap-junctional plaques formed of a sorting motif–deficient mutant of Cx43, which is unable to be internalized by the clathrin-mediated pathway, are predominantly endocytosed in the form of annular junctions. Thus the differential phosphorylation of Cx43 on Ser-279 and Ser-282 is fine-tuned to control Cx43’s endocytosis and assembly into gap junctions. PMID:23363606

  14. Perispeckles are major assembly sites for the exon junction core complex

    PubMed Central

    Daguenet, Elisabeth; Baguet, Aurélie; Degot, Sébastien; Schmidt, Ute; Alpy, Fabien; Wendling, Corinne; Spiegelhalter, Coralie; Kessler, Pascal; Rio, Marie-Christine; Le Hir, Hervé; Bertrand, Edouard; Tomasetto, Catherine

    2012-01-01

    The exon junction complex (EJC) is loaded onto mRNAs as a consequence of splicing and regulates multiple posttranscriptional events. MLN51, Magoh, Y14, and eIF4A3 form a highly stable EJC core, but where this tetrameric complex is assembled in the cell remains unclear. Here we show that EJC factors are enriched in domains that we term perispeckles and are visible as doughnuts around nuclear speckles. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer analyses and EJC assembly mutants show that perispeckles do not store free subunits, but instead are enriched for assembled cores. At the ultrastructural level, perispeckles are distinct from interchromatin granule clusters that may function as storage sites for splicing factors and intermingle with perichromatin fibrils, where nascent RNAs and active RNA Pol II are present. These results support a model in which perispeckles are major assembly sites for the tetrameric EJC core. This subnuclear territory thus represents an intermediate region important for mRNA maturation, between transcription sites and splicing factor reservoirs and assembly sites. PMID:22419818

  15. Perispeckles are major assembly sites for the exon junction core complex.

    PubMed

    Daguenet, Elisabeth; Baguet, Aurélie; Degot, Sébastien; Schmidt, Ute; Alpy, Fabien; Wendling, Corinne; Spiegelhalter, Coralie; Kessler, Pascal; Rio, Marie-Christine; Le Hir, Hervé; Bertrand, Edouard; Tomasetto, Catherine

    2012-05-01

    The exon junction complex (EJC) is loaded onto mRNAs as a consequence of splicing and regulates multiple posttranscriptional events. MLN51, Magoh, Y14, and eIF4A3 form a highly stable EJC core, but where this tetrameric complex is assembled in the cell remains unclear. Here we show that EJC factors are enriched in domains that we term perispeckles and are visible as doughnuts around nuclear speckles. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer analyses and EJC assembly mutants show that perispeckles do not store free subunits, but instead are enriched for assembled cores. At the ultrastructural level, perispeckles are distinct from interchromatin granule clusters that may function as storage sites for splicing factors and intermingle with perichromatin fibrils, where nascent RNAs and active RNA Pol II are present. These results support a model in which perispeckles are major assembly sites for the tetrameric EJC core. This subnuclear territory thus represents an intermediate region important for mRNA maturation, between transcription sites and splicing factor reservoirs and assembly sites. PMID:22419818

  16. Molecular junctions of self-assembled monolayers with conducting polymer contacts.

    PubMed

    Neuhausen, Alexander B; Hosseini, Ali; Sulpizio, Joseph A; Chidsey, Christopher E D; Goldhaber-Gordon, David

    2012-11-27

    We present a method to fabricate individually addressable junctions of self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) that builds on previous studies which have shown that soft conductive polymer top contacts virtually eliminate shorts through the SAMs. We demonstrate devices with nanoscale lateral dimensions, representing an order of magnitude reduction in device area, with high yield and relatively low device-to-device variation, improving several features of previous soft contact devices. The devices are formed in pores in an inorganic dielectric layer with features defined by e-beam lithography and dry etching. We replace the aqueous PEDOT:PSS conductive polymer used in prior devices with Aedotron P, a low-viscosity, amphiphilic polymer, allowing incorporation of self-assembled monolayers with either hydrophobic or hydrophilic termination with the same junction geometry and materials. We demonstrate the adaptability of this new design by presenting transport measurements on SAMs composed of alkanethiols with methyl, thiol, carboxyl, and azide terminations. We establish that the observed room-temperature tunnel barrier is primarily a function of monolayer thickness, independent of the terminal group's hydrophilicity. Finally, we investigate the temperature dependence of transport and show that the low-temperature behavior is based on the energy distribution of sites from which carriers can tunnel between the polymer and gold contacts, as described by a model of variable-range hopping transport in a disordered conductor. PMID:23035989

  17. Levonorgestrel Inhibits Human Endometrial Cell Proliferation through the Upregulation of Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication via the Nuclear Translocation of Ser255 Phosphorylated Cx43

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Xiaomiao; Tang, Xueliang; Ma, Tingting; Ding, Miao; Bian, Lijuan; Chen, Dongmei; Li, Yangzhi; Wang, Liangan; Zhuang, Yanyan; Xie, Meiqing; Yang, Dongzi

    2015-01-01

    Objects. To assess whether LNG exerts antiproliferation effects on human endometrial cells through changes of GJIC function and the phosphorylated Cx43. Methods. Cell proliferation and apoptosis of human endometrial stromal cells (HESCs) and glandular cells (HEGCs) treated with LNG in a dose- and time-dependent manner. GJIC change and further total Cx43 and serine 368 and 255 phosphorylated Cx43 were measured. Results. 5 × 10−5 mol/L LNG revealed a time-dependent inhibition of cell proliferation and an increase of apoptosis in both HESCs and HEGCs. Furthermore, these cells demonstrated a significant GJIC enhancement upon treatment with 5 × 10−5 mol/L for 48 hours. The effects of LNG were most noticeable in HESCs rather than in HEGCs. Associated with these changes, LNG induced a relative increase in total Cx43 in a time-dependent manner but not Ser368 phosphorylated Cx43. Moreover, laser scanning confocal microscope confirmed the increased expression of total Cx43 in the cytoplasm and, interestingly, the nuclear translocation of Ser255 phosphorylated Cx43. Conclusions. LNG likely inhibits the proliferation and promotes apoptosis in HESCs and HEGCs though an increase in gap junction permeability in vitro, which is achieved through the upregulation of Cx43 expression and the translocation of serine 255 phosphorylated Cx43 from the plasma to the nuclear compartment. PMID:26161412

  18. ADAM10 Is Involved in Cell Junction Assembly in Early Porcine Embryo Development

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Jeongwoo; Jeong, Sung-min; Choi, Inchul; Kim, Nam-Hyung

    2016-01-01

    ADAM10 (A Disintegrin and Metalloprotease domain-containing protein 10) is a cell surface protein with a unique structure possessing both potential adhesion and protease domains. However, the role of ADAM10 in preimplantation stage embryos is not clear. In this study, we examined the expression patterns and functional roles of ADAM10 in porcine parthenotes during preimplantation development. The transcription level of ADAM10 dramatically increased from the morula stage onward. Immunostaining revealed that ADAM10 was present in both the nucleus and cytoplasm in early cleavage stage embryos, and localized to the apical region of the outer cells in morula and blastocyst embryos. Knockdown (KD) of ADAM10 using double strand RNA did not alter preimplantation embryo development until morula stage, but resulted in significantly reduced development to blastocyst stage. Moreover, the KD blastocyst showed a decrease in gene expression of adherens and tight junction (AJ/TJ), and an increase in trophectoderm TJ permeability by disrupting TJ assembly. Treatment with an ADAM10 specific chemical inhibitor, GI254023X, at the morula stage also inhibited blastocyst development and led to disruption of TJ assembly. An in situ proximity ligation assay demonstrated direct interaction of ADAM10 with coxsackie virus and adenovirus receptor (CXADR), supporting the involvement of ADAM10 in TJ assembly. In conclusion, our findings strongly suggest that ADADM10 is important for blastocyst formation rather than compaction, particularly for TJ assembly and stabilization in preimplantation porcine parthenogenetic development. PMID:27043020

  19. ADAM10 Is Involved in Cell Junction Assembly in Early Porcine Embryo Development.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Jeongwoo; Jeong, Sung-min; Choi, Inchul; Kim, Nam-Hyung

    2016-01-01

    ADAM10 (A Disintegrin and Metalloprotease domain-containing protein 10) is a cell surface protein with a unique structure possessing both potential adhesion and protease domains. However, the role of ADAM10 in preimplantation stage embryos is not clear. In this study, we examined the expression patterns and functional roles of ADAM10 in porcine parthenotes during preimplantation development. The transcription level of ADAM10 dramatically increased from the morula stage onward. Immunostaining revealed that ADAM10 was present in both the nucleus and cytoplasm in early cleavage stage embryos, and localized to the apical region of the outer cells in morula and blastocyst embryos. Knockdown (KD) of ADAM10 using double strand RNA did not alter preimplantation embryo development until morula stage, but resulted in significantly reduced development to blastocyst stage. Moreover, the KD blastocyst showed a decrease in gene expression of adherens and tight junction (AJ/TJ), and an increase in trophectoderm TJ permeability by disrupting TJ assembly. Treatment with an ADAM10 specific chemical inhibitor, GI254023X, at the morula stage also inhibited blastocyst development and led to disruption of TJ assembly. An in situ proximity ligation assay demonstrated direct interaction of ADAM10 with coxsackie virus and adenovirus receptor (CXADR), supporting the involvement of ADAM10 in TJ assembly. In conclusion, our findings strongly suggest that ADADM10 is important for blastocyst formation rather than compaction, particularly for TJ assembly and stabilization in preimplantation porcine parthenogenetic development. PMID:27043020

  20. The Carboxyl Tail of Connexin32 Regulates Gap Junction Assembly in Human Prostate and Pancreatic Cancer Cells*

    PubMed Central

    Katoch, Parul; Mitra, Shalini; Ray, Anuttoma; Kelsey, Linda; Roberts, Brett J.; Wahl, James K.; Johnson, Keith R.; Mehta, Parmender P.

    2015-01-01

    Connexins, the constituent proteins of gap junctions, are transmembrane proteins. A connexin (Cx) traverses the membrane four times and has one intracellular and two extracellular loops with the amino and carboxyl termini facing the cytoplasm. The transmembrane and the extracellular loop domains are highly conserved among different Cxs, whereas the carboxyl termini, often called the cytoplasmic tails, are highly divergent. We have explored the role of the cytoplasmic tail of Cx32, a Cx expressed in polarized and differentiated cells, in regulating gap junction assembly. Our results demonstrate that compared with the full-length Cx32, the cytoplasmic tail-deleted Cx32 is assembled into small gap junctions in human pancreatic and prostatic cancer cells. Our results further document that the expression of the full-length Cx32 in cells, which express the tail-deleted Cx32, increases the size of gap junctions, whereas the expression of the tail-deleted Cx32 in cells, which express the full-length Cx32, has the opposite effect. Moreover, we show that the tail is required for the clustering of cell-cell channels and that in cells expressing the tail-deleted Cx32, the expression of cell surface-targeted cytoplasmic tail alone is sufficient to enhance the size of gap junctions. Our live-cell imaging data further demonstrate that gap junctions formed of the tail-deleted Cx32 are highly mobile compared with those formed of full-length Cx32. Our results suggest that the cytoplasmic tail of Cx32 is not required to initiate the assembly of gap junctions but for their subsequent growth and stability. Our findings suggest that the cytoplasmic tail of Cx32 may be involved in regulating the permeability of gap junctions by regulating their size. PMID:25548281

  1. Junctional actin assembly is mediated by Formin-like 2 downstream of Rac1

    PubMed Central

    Grikscheit, Katharina; Frank, Tanja; Wang, Ying

    2015-01-01

    Epithelial integrity is vitally important, and its deregulation causes early stage cancer. De novo formation of an adherens junction (AJ) between single epithelial cells requires coordinated, spatial actin dynamics, but the mechanisms steering nascent actin polymerization for cell–cell adhesion initiation are not well understood. Here we investigated real-time actin assembly during daughter cell–cell adhesion formation in human breast epithelial cells in 3D environments. We identify formin-like 2 (FMNL2) as being specifically required for actin assembly and turnover at newly formed cell–cell contacts as well as for human epithelial lumen formation. FMNL2 associates with components of the AJ complex involving Rac1 activity and the FMNL2 C terminus. Optogenetic control of Rac1 in living cells rapidly drove FMNL2 to epithelial cell–cell contact zones. Furthermore, Rac1-induced actin assembly and subsequent AJ formation critically depends on FMNL2. These data uncover FMNL2 as a driver for human epithelial AJ formation downstream of Rac1. PMID:25963818

  2. Junctional actin assembly is mediated by Formin-like 2 downstream of Rac1.

    PubMed

    Grikscheit, Katharina; Frank, Tanja; Wang, Ying; Grosse, Robert

    2015-05-11

    Epithelial integrity is vitally important, and its deregulation causes early stage cancer. De novo formation of an adherens junction (AJ) between single epithelial cells requires coordinated, spatial actin dynamics, but the mechanisms steering nascent actin polymerization for cell-cell adhesion initiation are not well understood. Here we investigated real-time actin assembly during daughter cell-cell adhesion formation in human breast epithelial cells in 3D environments. We identify formin-like 2 (FMNL2) as being specifically required for actin assembly and turnover at newly formed cell-cell contacts as well as for human epithelial lumen formation. FMNL2 associates with components of the AJ complex involving Rac1 activity and the FMNL2 C terminus. Optogenetic control of Rac1 in living cells rapidly drove FMNL2 to epithelial cell-cell contact zones. Furthermore, Rac1-induced actin assembly and subsequent AJ formation critically depends on FMNL2. These data uncover FMNL2 as a driver for human epithelial AJ formation downstream of Rac1. PMID:25963818

  3. Gap Junctions

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  4. Discovering the Molecular Components of Intercellular Junctions—A Historical View

    PubMed Central

    Franke, Werner W.

    2009-01-01

    The organization of metazoa is based on the formation of tissues and on tissue-typical functions and these in turn are based on cell–cell connecting structures. In vertebrates, four major forms of cell junctions have been classified and the molecular composition of which has been elucidated in the past three decades: Desmosomes, which connect epithelial and some other cell types, and the almost ubiquitous adherens junctions are based on closely cis-packed glycoproteins, cadherins, which are associated head-to-head with those of the hemi-junction domain of an adjacent cell, whereas their cytoplasmic regions assemble sizable plaques of special proteins anchoring cytoskeletal filaments. In contrast, the tight junctions (TJs) and gap junctions (GJs) are formed by tetraspan proteins (claudins and occludins, or connexins) arranged head-to-head as TJ seal bands or as paracrystalline connexin channels, allowing intercellular exchange of small molecules. The by and large parallel discoveries of the junction protein families are reported. PMID:20066111

  5. Creating Sub-50 Nm Nanofluidic Junctions in PDMS Microfluidic Chip via Self-Assembly Process of Colloidal Particles.

    PubMed

    Wei, Xi; Syed, Abeer; Mao, Pan; Han, Jongyoon; Song, Yong-Ak

    2016-01-01

    Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) is the prevailing building material to make microfluidic devices due to its ease of molding and bonding as well as its transparency. Due to the softness of the PDMS material, however, it is challenging to use PDMS for building nanochannels. The channels tend to collapse easily during plasma bonding. In this paper, we present an evaporation-driven self-assembly method of silica colloidal nanoparticles to create nanofluidic junctions with sub-50 nm pores between two microchannels. The pore size as well as the surface charge of the nanofluidic junction is tunable simply by changing the colloidal silica bead size and surface functionalization outside of the assembled microfluidic device in a vial before the self-assembly process. Using the self-assembly of nanoparticles with a bead size of 300 nm, 500 nm, and 900 nm, it was possible to fabricate a porous membrane with a pore size of ~45 nm, ~75 nm and ~135 nm, respectively. Under electrical potential, this nanoporous membrane initiated ion concentration polarization (ICP) acting as a cation-selective membrane to concentrate DNA by ~1,700 times within 15 min. This non-lithographic nanofabrication process opens up a new opportunity to build a tunable nanofluidic junction for the study of nanoscale transport processes of ions and molecules inside a PDMS microfluidic chip. PMID:27023724

  6. Role of redox centre in charge transport investigated by novel self-assembled conjugated polymer molecular junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zongrui; Dong, Huanli; Li, Tao; Hviid, Rune; Zou, Ye; Wei, Zhongming; Fu, Xiaolong; Wang, Erjing; Zhen, Yonggang; Nørgaard, Kasper; Laursen, Bo W.; Hu, Wenping

    2015-06-01

    Molecular electronics describes a field that seeks to implement electronic components made of molecular building blocks. To date, few studies have used conjugated polymers in molecular junctions despite the fact that they potentially transport charge more efficiently than the extensively investigated small-molecular systems. Here we report a novel type of molecular tunnelling junction exploring the use of conjugated polymers, which are self-assembled into ultrathin films in a distinguishable `planar' manner from the traditional vertically oriented small-molecule monolayers. Electrical measurements on the junctions reveal molecular-specific characteristics of the polymeric molecules in comparison with less conjugated small molecules. More significantly, we decorate redox-active functionality into polymeric backbones, demonstrating a key role of redox centre in the modulation of charge transport behaviour via energy level engineering and external stimuli, and implying the potential of employing tailor-made polymeric components as alternatives to small molecules for future molecular-scale electronics.

  7. Mammalian BTBD12/SLX4 assembles a Holliday junction resolvase and is required for DNA repair.

    PubMed

    Svendsen, Jennifer M; Smogorzewska, Agata; Sowa, Mathew E; O'Connell, Brenda C; Gygi, Steven P; Elledge, Stephen J; Harper, J Wade

    2009-07-10

    Structure-specific endonucleases mediate cleavage of DNA structures formed during repair of collapsed replication forks and double-strand breaks (DSBs). Here, we identify BTBD12 as the human ortholog of the budding yeast DNA repair factor Slx4p and D. melanogaster MUS312. Human SLX4 forms a multiprotein complex with the ERCC4(XPF)-ERCC1, MUS81-EME1, and SLX1 endonucleases and also associates with MSH2/MSH3 mismatch repair complex, telomere binding complex TERF2(TRF2)-TERF2IP(RAP1), the protein kinase PLK1 and the uncharacterized protein C20orf94. Depletion of SLX4 causes sensitivity to mitomycin C and camptothecin and reduces the efficiency of DSB repair in vivo. SLX4 complexes cleave 3' flap, 5' flap, and replication fork structures; yet unlike other endonucleases associated with SLX4, the SLX1-SLX4 module promotes symmetrical cleavage of static and migrating Holliday junctions (HJs), identifying SLX1-SLX4 as a HJ resolvase. Thus, SLX4 assembles a modular toolkit for repair of specific types of DNA lesions and is critical for cellular responses to replication fork failure. PMID:19596235

  8. Bottom head to shell junction assembly for a boiling water nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Fife, Alex Blair; Ballas, Gary J.

    1998-01-01

    A bottom head to shell junction assembly which, in one embodiment, includes an annular forging having an integrally formed pump deck and shroud support is described. In the one embodiment, the annular forging also includes a top, cylindrical shaped end configured to be welded to one end of the pressure vessel cylindrical shell and a bottom, conical shaped end configured to be welded to the disk shaped bottom head. Reactor internal pump nozzles also are integrally formed in the annular forging. The nozzles do not include any internal or external projections. Stubs are formed in each nozzle opening to facilitate welding a pump housing to the forging. Also, an upper portion of each nozzle opening is configured to receive a portion of a diffuser coupled to a pump shaft which extends through the nozzle opening. Diffuser openings are formed in the integral pump deck to provide additional support for the pump impellers. The diffuser opening is sized so that a pump impeller can extend at least partially therethrough. The pump impeller is connected to the pump shaft which extends through the nozzle opening.

  9. Bottom head to shell junction assembly for a boiling water nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Fife, A.B.; Ballas, G.J.

    1998-02-24

    A bottom head to shell junction assembly which, in one embodiment, includes an annular forging having an integrally formed pump deck and shroud support is described. In the one embodiment, the annular forging also includes a top, cylindrical shaped end configured to be welded to one end of the pressure vessel cylindrical shell and a bottom, conical shaped end configured to be welded to the disk shaped bottom head. Reactor internal pump nozzles also are integrally formed in the annular forging. The nozzles do not include any internal or external projections. Stubs are formed in each nozzle opening to facilitate welding a pump housing to the forging. Also, an upper portion of each nozzle opening is configured to receive a portion of a diffuser coupled to a pump shaft which extends through the nozzle opening. Diffuser openings are formed in the integral pump deck to provide additional support for the pump impellers. The diffuser opening is sized so that a pump impeller can extend at least partially therethrough. The pump impeller is connected to the pump shaft which extends through the nozzle opening. 5 figs.

  10. Crystal Phase Transformation in Self-Assembled InAs Nanowire Junctions on Patterned Si Substrates.

    PubMed

    Rieger, Torsten; Rosenbach, Daniel; Vakulov, Daniil; Heedt, Sebastian; Schäpers, Thomas; Grützmacher, Detlev; Lepsa, Mihail Ion

    2016-03-01

    We demonstrate the growth and structural characteristics of InAs nanowire junctions evidencing a transformation of the crystalline structure. The junctions are obtained without the use of catalyst particles. Morphological investigations of the junctions reveal three structures having an L-, T-, and X-shape. The formation mechanisms of these structures have been identified. The NW junctions reveal large sections of zinc blende crystal structure free of extended defects, despite the high stacking fault density obtained in individual InAs nanowires. This segment of zinc blende crystal structure in the junction is associated with a crystal phase transformation involving sets of Shockley partial dislocations; the transformation takes place solely in the crystal phase. A model is developed to demonstrate that only the zinc blende phase with the same orientation as the substrate can result in monocrystalline junctions. The suitability of the junctions to be used in nanoelectronic devices is confirmed by room-temperature electrical experiments. PMID:26881450

  11. CFTR interacts with ZO-1 to regulate tight junction assembly and epithelial differentiation through the ZONAB pathway.

    PubMed

    Ruan, Ye Chun; Wang, Yan; Da Silva, Nicolas; Kim, Bongki; Diao, Rui Ying; Hill, Eric; Brown, Dennis; Chan, Hsiao Chang; Breton, Sylvie

    2014-10-15

    Mutations in CFTR lead to dysfunction of tubular organs, which is currently attributed to impairment of its conductive properties. We now show that CFTR regulates tight junction assembly and epithelial cell differentiation through modulation of the ZO-1-ZONAB pathway. CFTR colocalizes with ZO-1 at the tight junctions of trachea and epididymis, and is expressed before ZO-1 in Wolffian ducts. CFTR interacts with ZO-1 through the CTFR PDZ-binding domain. In a three-dimensional (3D) epithelial cell culture model, CFTR regulates tight junction assembly and is required for tubulogenesis. CFTR inhibition or knockdown reduces ZO-1 expression and induces the translocation of the transcription factor ZONAB (also known as YBX3) from tight junctions to the nucleus, followed by upregulation of the transcription of CCND1 and downregulation of ErbB2 transcription. The epididymal tubules of cftr(-/-) and cftr(ΔF508) mice have reduced ZO-1 levels, increased ZONAB nuclear expression, and decreased epithelial cell differentiation, illustrated by the reduced expression of apical AQP9 and V-ATPase. This study provides a new paradigm for the etiology of diseases associated with CFTR mutations, including cystic fibrosis. PMID:25107366

  12. CFTR interacts with ZO-1 to regulate tight junction assembly and epithelial differentiation through the ZONAB pathway

    PubMed Central

    Ruan, Ye Chun; Wang, Yan; Da Silva, Nicolas; Kim, Bongki; Diao, Rui Ying; Hill, Eric; Brown, Dennis; Chan, Hsiao Chang; Breton, Sylvie

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Mutations in CFTR lead to dysfunction of tubular organs, which is currently attributed to impairment of its conductive properties. We now show that CFTR regulates tight junction assembly and epithelial cell differentiation through modulation of the ZO-1–ZONAB pathway. CFTR colocalizes with ZO-1 at the tight junctions of trachea and epididymis, and is expressed before ZO-1 in Wolffian ducts. CFTR interacts with ZO-1 through the CTFR PDZ-binding domain. In a three-dimensional (3D) epithelial cell culture model, CFTR regulates tight junction assembly and is required for tubulogenesis. CFTR inhibition or knockdown reduces ZO-1 expression and induces the translocation of the transcription factor ZONAB (also known as YBX3) from tight junctions to the nucleus, followed by upregulation of the transcription of CCND1 and downregulation of ErbB2 transcription. The epididymal tubules of cftr−/− and cftrΔF508 mice have reduced ZO-1 levels, increased ZONAB nuclear expression, and decreased epithelial cell differentiation, illustrated by the reduced expression of apical AQP9 and V-ATPase. This study provides a new paradigm for the etiology of diseases associated with CFTR mutations, including cystic fibrosis. PMID:25107366

  13. A complex of ZO-1 and the BAR-domain protein TOCA-1 regulates actin assembly at the tight junction

    PubMed Central

    Van Itallie, Christina M.; Tietgens, Amber Jean; Krystofiak, Evan; Kachar, Bechara; Anderson, James M.

    2015-01-01

    Assembly and sealing of the tight junction barrier are critically dependent on the perijunctional actin cytoskeleton, yet little is known about physical and functional links between barrier-forming proteins and actin. Here we identify a novel functional complex of the junction scaffolding protein ZO-1 and the F-BAR–domain protein TOCA-1. Using MDCK epithelial cells, we show that an alternative splice of TOCA-1 adds a PDZ-binding motif, which binds ZO-1, targeting TOCA-1 to barrier contacts. This isoform of TOCA-1 recruits the actin nucleation–promoting factor N-WASP to tight junctions. CRISPR-Cas9–mediated knockout of TOCA-1 results in increased paracellular flux and delayed recovery in a calcium switch assay. Knockout of TOCA-1 does not alter FRAP kinetics of GFP ZO-1 or occludin, but longer term (12 h) time-lapse microscopy reveals strikingly decreased tight junction membrane contact dynamics in knockout cells compared with controls. Reexpression of TOCA-1 with, but not without, the PDZ-binding motif rescues both altered flux and membrane contact dynamics. Ultrastructural analysis shows actin accumulation at the adherens junction in TOCA-1–knockout cells but unaltered freeze-fracture fibril morphology. Identification of the ZO-1/TOCA-1 complex provides novel insights into the underappreciated dependence of the barrier on the dynamic nature of cell-to-cell contacts and perijunctional actin. PMID:26063734

  14. The Extracellular Architecture of Adherens Junctions Revealed by Crystal Structures of Type I Cadherins

    SciTech Connect

    O Harrison; X Jin; S Hong; F Bahna; G Ahlsen; J Brasch; Y Wu; J Vendome; K Felsovalyi; et al.

    2011-12-31

    Adherens junctions, which play a central role in intercellular adhesion, comprise clusters of type I classical cadherins that bind via extracellular domains extended from opposing cell surfaces. We show that a molecular layer seen in crystal structures of E- and N-cadherin ectodomains reported here and in a previous C-cadherin structure corresponds to the extracellular architecture of adherens junctions. In all three ectodomain crystals, cadherins dimerize through a trans adhesive interface and are connected by a second, cis, interface. Assemblies formed by E-cadherin ectodomains coated on liposomes also appear to adopt this structure. Fluorescent imaging of junctions formed from wild-type and mutant E-cadherins in cultured cells confirm conclusions derived from structural evidence. Mutations that interfere with the trans interface ablate adhesion, whereas cis interface mutations disrupt stable junction formation. Our observations are consistent with a model for junction assembly involving strong trans and weak cis interactions localized in the ectodomain.

  15. Synaptopodin couples epithelial contractility to α-actinin-4–dependent junction maturation

    PubMed Central

    Kannan, Nivetha

    2015-01-01

    The epithelial junction experiences mechanical force exerted by endogenous actomyosin activities and from interactions with neighboring cells. We hypothesize that tension generated at cell–cell adhesive contacts contributes to the maturation and assembly of the junctional complex. To test our hypothesis, we used a hydraulic apparatus that can apply mechanical force to intercellular junction in a confluent monolayer of cells. We found that mechanical force induces α-actinin-4 and actin accumulation at the cell junction in a time- and tension-dependent manner during junction development. Intercellular tension also induces α-actinin-4–dependent recruitment of vinculin to the cell junction. In addition, we have identified a tension-sensitive upstream regulator of α-actinin-4 as synaptopodin. Synaptopodin forms a complex containing α-actinin-4 and β-catenin and interacts with myosin II, indicating that it can physically link adhesion molecules to the cellular contractile apparatus. Synaptopodin depletion prevents junctional accumulation of α-actinin-4, vinculin, and actin. Knockdown of synaptopodin and α-actinin-4 decreases the strength of cell–cell adhesion, reduces the monolayer permeability barrier, and compromises cellular contractility. Our findings underscore the complexity of junction development and implicate a control process via tension-induced sequential incorporation of junctional components. PMID:26504173

  16. Nerve impulses increase glial intercellular permeability.

    PubMed

    Marrero, H; Orkand, R K

    1996-03-01

    Coordinating the activity of neurons and their satellite glial cells requires mechanisms by which glial cells detect neuronal activity and change their properties as a result. This study monitors the intercellular diffusion of the fluorescent dye Lucifer Yellow (LY), following its injection into glial cells of the frog optic nerve, and demonstrates that nerve impulses increase the permeability of interglial gap junctions. Consequently, the spatial buffer capacity of the neuroglial cell syncytium for potassium, other ions, and small molecules will be enhanced; this may facilitate glial function in maintaining homeostasis of the neuronal microenvironment. PMID:8833199

  17. Protein-RNA Dynamics in the Central Junction Control 30S Ribosome Assembly.

    PubMed

    Baker, Kris Ann; Lamichhane, Rajan; Lamichhane, Tek; Rueda, David; Cunningham, Philip R

    2016-09-11

    Interactions between ribosomal proteins (rproteins) and ribosomal RNA (rRNA) facilitate the formation of functional ribosomes. S15 is a central domain primary binding protein that has been shown to trigger a cascade of conformational changes in 16S rRNA, forming the functional structure of the central domain. Previous biochemical and structural studies in vitro have revealed that S15 binds a three-way junction of helices 20, 21, and 22, including nucleotides 652-654 and 752-754. All junction nucleotides except 653 are highly conserved among the Bacteria. To identify functionally important motifs within the junction, we subjected nucleotides 652-654 and 752-754 to saturation mutagenesis and selected and analyzed functional mutants. Only 64 mutants with greater than 10% ribosome function in vivo were isolated. S15 overexpression complemented mutations in the junction loop in each of the partially active mutants, although mutations that produced inactive ribosomes were not complemented by overexpression of S15. Single-molecule Förster or fluorescence resonance energy transfer (smFRET) was used to study the Mg(2+)- and S15-induced conformational dynamics of selected junction mutants. Comparison of the structural dynamics of these mutants with the wild type in the presence and absence of S15 revealed specific sequence and structural motifs in the central junction that are important in ribosome function. PMID:27192112

  18. Comparative passivation effects of self-assembled mono- and multilayers on GaAs junction field effect transistors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Kangho; Lu, Gang; Facchetti, Antonio; Janes, David B.; Marks, Tobin J.

    2008-03-01

    Control of semiconductor interface state density with molecular passivation is essential for developing conduction-based biosensors. In this study, GaAs junction field effect transistors (JFETs) are fabricated and characterized before and after passivation of the GaAs surface with self-assembled mono- and multilayers. The JFETs functionalized with 1-octadecanethiol monolayers and two types of self-assembled organic nanodielectric (SAND) multilayers exhibit significantly different threshold voltage (Vth) and subthreshold slope (Ssub) characteristics versus the unpassivated devices and provide useful information on the quality of the passivation. Two-dimensional device simulations quantify the effective density of fixed surface charges and interfacial traps and argue for the importance of the type-III SAND ionic charges in enhancing GaAs JFET response characteristics.

  19. Self-assembled and highly selective sensors based on air-bridge-structured nanowire junction arrays.

    PubMed

    Park, Won Jeong; Choi, Kyung Jin; Kim, Myung Hwa; Koo, Bon Hyeong; Lee, Jong-Lam; Baik, Jeong Min

    2013-08-14

    We describe a strategy for creating an air-bridge-structured nanowire junction array platform that capable of reliably discriminating between three gases (hydrogen, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen dioxide) in air. Alternatively driven dual nanowire species of ZnO and CuO with the average diameter of ∼30 nm on a single substrate are used and decorated with metallic nanoparticles to form two-dimensional microarray, which do not need to consider the post fabrications. Each individual nanowires in the array form n-n, p-p, and p-n junctions at the micro/nanoscale on single substrate and the junctions act as electrical conducting path for carriers. The adsorption of gas molecules to the surface changes the potential barrier height formed at the junctions and the carrier transport inside the straight semiconductors, which provide the ability of a given sensor array to differentiate among the junctions. The sensors were tested for their ability to distinguish three gases (H2, CO, and NO2), which they were able to do unequivocally when the data was classified using linear discriminant analysis. PMID:23841667

  20. LRP6 acts as a scaffold protein in cardiac gap junction assembly.

    PubMed

    Li, Jun; Li, Changming; Liang, Dandan; Lv, Fei; Yuan, Tianyou; The, Erlinda; Ma, Xiue; Wu, Yahan; Zhen, Lixiao; Xie, Duanyang; Wang, Shiyi; Liu, Yuan; Huang, Jian; Shi, Jingyi; Liu, Yi; Shi, Dan; Xu, Liang; Lin, Li; Peng, Luying; Cui, Jianmin; Zhu, Weidong; Chen, Yi-Han

    2016-01-01

    Low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 6 (LRP6) is a Wnt co-receptor in the canonical Wnt/β-catenin signalling. Here, we report the scaffold function of LRP6 in gap junction formation of cardiomyocytes. Cardiac LRP6 is spatially restricted to intercalated discs and binds to gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43). A deficiency in LRP6 disrupts Cx43 gap junction formation and thereby impairs the cell-to-cell coupling, which is independent of Wnt/β-catenin signalling. The defect in Cx43 gap junction resulting from LRP6 reduction is attributable to the defective traffic of de novo Cx43 proteins from the endoplasmic reticulum to the Golgi apparatus, leading to the lysosomal degradation of Cx43 proteins. Accordingly, the hearts of conditional cardiac-specific Lrp6-knockout mice consistently exhibit overt reduction of Cx43 gap junction plaques without any abnormality in Wnt signalling and are predisposed to lethal arrhythmias. These findings uncover a distinct role of LRP6 as a platform for intracellular protein trafficking. PMID:27250245

  1. LRP6 acts as a scaffold protein in cardiac gap junction assembly

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jun; Li, Changming; Liang, Dandan; Lv, Fei; Yuan, Tianyou; The, Erlinda; Ma, Xiue; Wu, Yahan; Zhen, Lixiao; Xie, Duanyang; Wang, Shiyi; Liu, Yuan; Huang, Jian; Shi, Jingyi; Liu, Yi; Shi, Dan; Xu, Liang; Lin, Li; Peng, Luying; Cui, Jianmin; Zhu, Weidong; Chen, Yi-Han

    2016-01-01

    Low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 6 (LRP6) is a Wnt co-receptor in the canonical Wnt/β-catenin signalling. Here, we report the scaffold function of LRP6 in gap junction formation of cardiomyocytes. Cardiac LRP6 is spatially restricted to intercalated discs and binds to gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43). A deficiency in LRP6 disrupts Cx43 gap junction formation and thereby impairs the cell-to-cell coupling, which is independent of Wnt/β-catenin signalling. The defect in Cx43 gap junction resulting from LRP6 reduction is attributable to the defective traffic of de novo Cx43 proteins from the endoplasmic reticulum to the Golgi apparatus, leading to the lysosomal degradation of Cx43 proteins. Accordingly, the hearts of conditional cardiac-specific Lrp6-knockout mice consistently exhibit overt reduction of Cx43 gap junction plaques without any abnormality in Wnt signalling and are predisposed to lethal arrhythmias. These findings uncover a distinct role of LRP6 as a platform for intracellular protein trafficking. PMID:27250245

  2. Connexin26 regulates assembly and maintenance of cochlear gap junction macromolecular complex for normal hearing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamiya, Kazusaku; Fukunaga, Ichiro; Hatakeyama, Kaori; Ikeda, Katsuhisa

    2015-12-01

    Hereditary deafness affects about 1 in 2000 children and GJB2 gene mutation is most frequent cause for this disease in the world. GJB2 encodes connexin26 (Cx26), a component in cochlear gap junction. Recently, we found macromolecular change of gap junction plaques with two different types of Cx26 mutation as major classification of clinical case, one is a model of dominant negative type, Cx26R75W+ and the other is conditional gene deficient mouse, Cx26f/fP0Cre as a model for insufficiency of gap junction protein [6]. Gap junction composed mainly of Cx26 and Cx30 in wild type mice formed large planar gap junction plaques (GJP). In contrast, Cx26R75W+ and Cx26f/fP0Cre showed fragmented small round GJPs around the cell border. In Cx26f/fP0Cre, some of the cells with Cx26 expression due to their cellular mosaicism showed normal large GJP with Cx26 and Cx30 only at the cell junction site between two Cx26 positive cells. These indicate that bilateral Cx26 expressions from both adjacent cells are essential for the formation of the cochlear linear GJP, and it is not compensated by other cochlear Connexins such as Connexin30. In the present study, we demonstrated a new molecular pathology in most common hereditary deafness with different types of Connexin26 mutations, and this machinery can be a new target for drag design of hereditary deafness.

  3. [Intercellular channels in animals].

    PubMed

    Panchin, Iu V

    2011-01-01

    Gap junctions are considered to serve a similar function in all multicellular animals (Metazoa). Two unrelated protein families are involved in this function: connexins, which are found only in chordates, and pannexins, which are present in the genomes of both chordates and invertebrates. Recent sequence data from different organisms show important exceptions to this simplified scheme. It looks as if Chordate lancelet has only pannexins and no connexins in its genome. New data indicate that some metazoans have neither connexins nor pannexins and use other unidentified proteins to form gap junctions. PMID:21786702

  4. Fluid shear, intercellular stress, and endothelial cell alignment

    PubMed Central

    Steward, Robert; Tambe, Dhananjay; Hardin, C. Corey; Krishnan, Ramaswamy

    2015-01-01

    Endothelial cell alignment along the direction of laminar fluid flow is widely understood to be a defining morphological feature of vascular homeostasis. While the role of associated signaling and structural events have been well studied, associated intercellular stresses under laminar fluid shear have remained ill-defined and the role of these stresses in the alignment process has remained obscure. To fill this gap, we report here the tractions as well as the complete in-plane intercellular stress fields measured within the human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) monolayer subjected to a steady laminar fluid shear of 1 Pa. Tractions, intercellular stresses, as well as their time course, heterogeneity, and anisotropy, were measured using monolayer traction microscopy and monolayer stress microscopy. Prior to application of laminar fluid flow, intercellular stresses were largely tensile but fluctuated dramatically in space and in time (317 ± 122 Pa). Within 12 h of the onset of laminar fluid flow, the intercellular stresses decreased substantially but continued to fluctuate dramatically (142 ± 84 Pa). Moreover, tractions and intercellular stresses aligned strongly and promptly (within 1 h) along the direction of fluid flow, whereas the endothelial cell body aligned less strongly and substantially more slowly (12 h). Taken together, these results reveal that steady laminar fluid flow induces prompt reduction in magnitude and alignment of tractions and intercellular stress tensor components followed by the retarded elongation and alignment of the endothelial cell body. Appreciably smaller intercellular stresses supported by cell-cell junctions logically favor smaller incidence of gap formation and thus improved barrier integrity. PMID:25652451

  5. Systems and assemblies for transferring high power laser energy through a rotating junction

    DOEpatents

    Norton, Ryan J.; McKay, Ryan P.; Fraze, Jason D.; Rinzler, Charles C.; Grubb, Daryl L.; Faircloth, Brian O.; Zediker, Mark S.

    2016-01-26

    There are provided high power laser devices and systems for transmitting a high power laser beam across a rotating assembly, including optical slip rings and optical rotational coupling assemblies. These devices can transmit the laser beam through the rotation zone in free space or within a fiber.

  6. Morse potential-based model for contacting composite rough surfaces: Application to self-assembled monolayer junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sierra-Suarez, Jonatan A.; Majumdar, Shubhaditya; McGaughey, Alan J. H.; Malen, Jonathan A.; Higgs, C. Fred

    2016-04-01

    This work formulates a rough surface contact model that accounts for adhesion through a Morse potential and plasticity through the Kogut-Etsion finite element-based approximation. Compared to the commonly used Lennard-Jones (LJ) potential, the Morse potential provides a more accurate and generalized description for modeling covalent materials and surface interactions. An extension of this contact model to describe composite layered surfaces is presented and implemented to study a self-assembled monolayer (SAM) grown on a gold substrate placed in contact with a second gold substrate. Based on a comparison with prior experimental measurements of the thermal conductance of this SAM junction [Majumdar et al., Nano Lett. 15, 2985-2991 (2015)], the more general Morse potential-based contact model provides a better prediction of the percentage contact area than an equivalent LJ potential-based model.

  7. Desmosome assembly and dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Nekrasova, Oxana; Green, Kathleen J.

    2013-01-01

    Desmosomes are intercellular junctions that anchor intermediate filaments to the plasma membrane, forming a supracellular scaffold that provides mechanical resilience to tissues. This anchoring function is accomplished by specialized members of the cadherin family and associated cytoskeletal linking proteins, which together form a highly organized membrane core flanked by mirror image cytoplasmic plaques. Due to the biochemical insolubility of desmosomes, the mechanisms that govern assembly of these components into a functional organelle remained elusive. Recently developed molecular reporters and live cell imaging approaches have provided powerful new tools to monitor this finely-tuned process in real time. Here we discuss studies that are beginning to decipher the machinery and regulation governing desmosome assembly and homeostasis in situ, and how these mechanisms are affected during disease pathogenesis. PMID:23891292

  8. Creating Sub-50 nm Nanofluidic Junctions in PDMS Microchip via Self-Assembly Process of Colloidal Silica Beads for Electrokinetic Concentration of Biomolecules

    PubMed Central

    Syed, A.; Mangano, L.; Mao, P.; Han, J.

    2014-01-01

    In this work we describe a novel and simple self-assembly of colloidal silica beads to create nanofluidic junction between two microchannels. The nanoporous membrane was used to induce ion concentration polarization inside the microchannel and this electrokinetic preconcentration system allowed rapid concentration of DNA samples by ∼1700 times and protein samples by ∼100 times within 5 minutes. PMID:25254651

  9. Structure of components of an intercellular channel complex in sporulating Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Levdikov, Vladimir M.; Blagova, Elena V.; McFeat, Amanda; Fogg, Mark J.; Wilson, Keith S.; Wilkinson, Anthony J.

    2012-01-01

    Following asymmetric cell division during spore formation in Bacillus subtilis, a forespore expressed membrane protein SpoIIQ, interacts across an intercellular space with a mother cell-expressed membrane protein, SpoIIIAH. Their interaction can serve as a molecular “ratchet” contributing to the migration of the mother cell membrane around that of the forespore in a phagocytosis-like process termed engulfment. Upon completion of engulfment, SpoIIQ and SpoIIIAH are integral components of a recently proposed intercellular channel allowing passage from the mother cell into the forespore of factors required for late gene expression in this compartment. Here we show that the extracellular domains of SpoIIQ and SpoIIIAH form a heterodimeric complex in solution. The crystal structure of this complex reveals that SpoIIQ has a LytM-like zinc-metalloprotease fold but with an incomplete zinc coordination sphere and no metal. SpoIIIAH has an α-helical subdomain and a protruding β-sheet subdomain, which mediates interactions with SpoIIQ. SpoIIIAH has sequence and structural homology to EscJ, a type III secretion system protein that forms a 24-fold symmetric ring. Superposition of the structures of SpoIIIAH and EscJ reveals that the SpoIIIAH protomer overlaps with two adjacent protomers of EscJ, allowing us to generate a dodecameric SpoIIIAH ring by using structural homology. Following this superposition, the SpoIIQ chains also form a closed dodecameric ring abutting the SpoIIIAH ring, producing an assembly surrounding a 60 Å channel. The dimensions and organization of the proposed complex suggest it is a plausible model for the extracellular component of a gap junction-like intercellular channel. PMID:22431604

  10. Brain barriers: Crosstalk between complex tight junctions and adherens junctions

    PubMed Central

    Tietz, Silvia

    2015-01-01

    Unique intercellular junctional complexes between the central nervous system (CNS) microvascular endothelial cells and the choroid plexus epithelial cells form the endothelial blood–brain barrier (BBB) and the epithelial blood–cerebrospinal fluid barrier (BCSFB), respectively. These barriers inhibit paracellular diffusion, thereby protecting the CNS from fluctuations in the blood. Studies of brain barrier integrity during development, normal physiology, and disease have focused on BBB and BCSFB tight junctions but not the corresponding endothelial and epithelial adherens junctions. The crosstalk between adherens junctions and tight junctions in maintaining barrier integrity is an understudied area that may represent a promising target for influencing brain barrier function. PMID:26008742

  11. Mitotic regulator Mis18β interacts with and specifies the centromeric assembly of molecular chaperone holliday junction recognition protein (HJURP).

    PubMed

    Wang, Jianyu; Liu, Xing; Dou, Zhen; Chen, Liang; Jiang, Hao; Fu, Chuanhai; Fu, Guosheng; Liu, Dan; Zhang, Jiancun; Zhu, Tongge; Fang, Jingwen; Zang, Jianye; Cheng, Jinke; Teng, Maikun; Ding, Xia; Yao, Xuebiao

    2014-03-21

    The centromere is essential for precise and equal segregation of the parental genome into two daughter cells during mitosis. CENP-A is a unique histone H3 variant conserved in eukaryotic centromeres. The assembly of CENP-A to the centromere is mediated by Holliday junction recognition protein (HJURP) in early G1 phase. However, it remains elusive how HJURP governs CENP-A incorporation into the centromere. Here we show that human HJURP directly binds to Mis18β, a component of the Mis18 complex conserved in the eukaryotic kingdom. A minimal region of HJURP for Mis18β binding was mapped to residues 437-460. Depletion of Mis18β by RNA interference dramatically impaired HJURP recruitment to the centromere, indicating the importance of Mis18β in HJURP loading. Interestingly, phosphorylation of HJURP by CDK1 weakens its interaction with Mis18β, consistent with the notion that assembly of CENP-A to the centromere is achieved after mitosis. Taken together, these data define a novel molecular mechanism underlying the temporal regulation of CENP-A incorporation into the centromere by accurate Mis18β-HJURP interaction. PMID:24519934

  12. Mitotic Regulator Mis18β Interacts with and Specifies the Centromeric Assembly of Molecular Chaperone Holliday Junction Recognition Protein (HJURP)*

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jianyu; Liu, Xing; Dou, Zhen; Chen, Liang; Jiang, Hao; Fu, Chuanhai; Fu, Guosheng; Liu, Dan; Zhang, Jiancun; Zhu, Tongge; Fang, Jingwen; Zang, Jianye; Cheng, Jinke; Teng, Maikun; Ding, Xia; Yao, Xuebiao

    2014-01-01

    The centromere is essential for precise and equal segregation of the parental genome into two daughter cells during mitosis. CENP-A is a unique histone H3 variant conserved in eukaryotic centromeres. The assembly of CENP-A to the centromere is mediated by Holliday junction recognition protein (HJURP) in early G1 phase. However, it remains elusive how HJURP governs CENP-A incorporation into the centromere. Here we show that human HJURP directly binds to Mis18β, a component of the Mis18 complex conserved in the eukaryotic kingdom. A minimal region of HJURP for Mis18β binding was mapped to residues 437–460. Depletion of Mis18β by RNA interference dramatically impaired HJURP recruitment to the centromere, indicating the importance of Mis18β in HJURP loading. Interestingly, phosphorylation of HJURP by CDK1 weakens its interaction with Mis18β, consistent with the notion that assembly of CENP-A to the centromere is achieved after mitosis. Taken together, these data define a novel molecular mechanism underlying the temporal regulation of CENP-A incorporation into the centromere by accurate Mis18β-HJURP interaction. PMID:24519934

  13. Self-assembled molecular p/n junctions for applications in dye-sensitized solar energy conversion.

    PubMed

    Farnum, Byron H; Wee, Kyung-Ryang; Meyer, Thomas J

    2016-09-01

    The achievement of long-lived photoinduced redox separation lifetimes has long been a central goal of molecular-based solar energy conversion strategies. The longer the redox-separation lifetime, the more time available for useful work to be extracted from the absorbed photon energy. Here we describe a novel strategy for dye-sensitized solar energy applications in which redox-separated lifetimes on the order of milliseconds to seconds can be achieved based on a simple toolkit of molecular components. Specifically, molecular chromophores (C), electron acceptors (A) and electron donors (D) were self-assembled on the surfaces of mesoporous, transparent conducting indium tin oxide nanoparticle (nanoITO) electrodes to prepare both photoanode (nanoITO|-A-C-D) and photocathode (nanoITO|-D-C-A) assemblies. Nanosecond transient-absorption and steady-state photolysis measurements show that the electrodes function microscopically as molecular analogues of semiconductor p/n junctions. These results point to a new chemical strategy for dye-sensitized solar energy conversion based on molecular excited states and electron acceptors/donors on the surfaces of transparent conducting oxide nanoparticle electrodes. PMID:27554411

  14. Optical modulation of nano-gap tunnelling junctions comprising self-assembled monolayers of hemicyanine dyes

    PubMed Central

    Pourhossein, Parisa; Vijayaraghavan, Ratheesh K.; Meskers, Stefan C. J.; Chiechi, Ryan C.

    2016-01-01

    Light-driven conductance switching in molecular tunnelling junctions that relies on photoisomerization is constrained by the limitations of kinetic traps and either by the sterics of rearranging atoms in a densely packed monolayer or the small absorbance of individual molecules. Here we demonstrate light-driven conductance gating; devices comprising monolayers of hemicyanine dyes trapped between two metallic nanowires exhibit higher conductance under irradiation than in the dark. The modulation of the tunnelling current occurs faster than the timescale of the measurement (∼1 min). We propose a mechanism in which a fraction of molecules enters an excited state that brings the conjugated portion of the monolayer into resonance with the electrodes. This mechanism is supported by calculations showing the delocalization of molecular orbitals near the Fermi energy in the excited and cationic states, but not the ground state and a reasonable change in conductance with respect to the effective barrier width. PMID:27272394

  15. Optical modulation of nano-gap tunnelling junctions comprising self-assembled monolayers of hemicyanine dyes.

    PubMed

    Pourhossein, Parisa; Vijayaraghavan, Ratheesh K; Meskers, Stefan C J; Chiechi, Ryan C

    2016-01-01

    Light-driven conductance switching in molecular tunnelling junctions that relies on photoisomerization is constrained by the limitations of kinetic traps and either by the sterics of rearranging atoms in a densely packed monolayer or the small absorbance of individual molecules. Here we demonstrate light-driven conductance gating; devices comprising monolayers of hemicyanine dyes trapped between two metallic nanowires exhibit higher conductance under irradiation than in the dark. The modulation of the tunnelling current occurs faster than the timescale of the measurement (∼1 min). We propose a mechanism in which a fraction of molecules enters an excited state that brings the conjugated portion of the monolayer into resonance with the electrodes. This mechanism is supported by calculations showing the delocalization of molecular orbitals near the Fermi energy in the excited and cationic states, but not the ground state and a reasonable change in conductance with respect to the effective barrier width. PMID:27272394

  16. Optical modulation of nano-gap tunnelling junctions comprising self-assembled monolayers of hemicyanine dyes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pourhossein, Parisa; Vijayaraghavan, Ratheesh K.; Meskers, Stefan C. J.; Chiechi, Ryan C.

    2016-06-01

    Light-driven conductance switching in molecular tunnelling junctions that relies on photoisomerization is constrained by the limitations of kinetic traps and either by the sterics of rearranging atoms in a densely packed monolayer or the small absorbance of individual molecules. Here we demonstrate light-driven conductance gating; devices comprising monolayers of hemicyanine dyes trapped between two metallic nanowires exhibit higher conductance under irradiation than in the dark. The modulation of the tunnelling current occurs faster than the timescale of the measurement (~1 min). We propose a mechanism in which a fraction of molecules enters an excited state that brings the conjugated portion of the monolayer into resonance with the electrodes. This mechanism is supported by calculations showing the delocalization of molecular orbitals near the Fermi energy in the excited and cationic states, but not the ground state and a reasonable change in conductance with respect to the effective barrier width.

  17. A Single-Level Tunnel Model to Account for Electrical Transport through Single Molecule- and Self-Assembled Monolayer-based Junctions

    PubMed Central

    Garrigues, Alvar R.; Yuan, Li; Wang, Lejia; Mucciolo, Eduardo R.; Thompon, Damien; del Barco, Enrique; Nijhuis, Christian A.

    2016-01-01

    We present a theoretical analysis aimed at understanding electrical conduction in molecular tunnel junctions. We focus on discussing the validity of coherent versus incoherent theoretical formulations for single-level tunneling to explain experimental results obtained under a wide range of experimental conditions, including measurements in individual molecules connecting the leads of electromigrated single-electron transistors and junctions of self-assembled monolayers (SAM) of molecules sandwiched between two macroscopic contacts. We show that the restriction of transport through a single level in solid state junctions (no solvent) makes coherent and incoherent tunneling formalisms indistinguishable when only one level participates in transport. Similar to Marcus relaxation processes in wet electrochemistry, the thermal broadening of the Fermi distribution describing the electronic occupation energies in the electrodes accounts for the exponential dependence of the tunneling current on temperature. We demonstrate that a single-level tunnel model satisfactorily explains experimental results obtained in three different molecular junctions (both single-molecule and SAM-based) formed by ferrocene-based molecules. Among other things, we use the model to map the electrostatic potential profile in EGaIn-based SAM junctions in which the ferrocene unit is placed at different positions within the molecule, and we find that electrical screening gives rise to a strongly non-linear profile across the junction. PMID:27216489

  18. A Single-Level Tunnel Model to Account for Electrical Transport through Single Molecule- and Self-Assembled Monolayer-based Junctions.

    PubMed

    Garrigues, Alvar R; Yuan, Li; Wang, Lejia; Mucciolo, Eduardo R; Thompon, Damien; Del Barco, Enrique; Nijhuis, Christian A

    2016-01-01

    We present a theoretical analysis aimed at understanding electrical conduction in molecular tunnel junctions. We focus on discussing the validity of coherent versus incoherent theoretical formulations for single-level tunneling to explain experimental results obtained under a wide range of experimental conditions, including measurements in individual molecules connecting the leads of electromigrated single-electron transistors and junctions of self-assembled monolayers (SAM) of molecules sandwiched between two macroscopic contacts. We show that the restriction of transport through a single level in solid state junctions (no solvent) makes coherent and incoherent tunneling formalisms indistinguishable when only one level participates in transport. Similar to Marcus relaxation processes in wet electrochemistry, the thermal broadening of the Fermi distribution describing the electronic occupation energies in the electrodes accounts for the exponential dependence of the tunneling current on temperature. We demonstrate that a single-level tunnel model satisfactorily explains experimental results obtained in three different molecular junctions (both single-molecule and SAM-based) formed by ferrocene-based molecules. Among other things, we use the model to map the electrostatic potential profile in EGaIn-based SAM junctions in which the ferrocene unit is placed at different positions within the molecule, and we find that electrical screening gives rise to a strongly non-linear profile across the junction. PMID:27216489

  19. A Single-Level Tunnel Model to Account for Electrical Transport through Single Molecule- and Self-Assembled Monolayer-based Junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garrigues, Alvar R.; Yuan, Li; Wang, Lejia; Mucciolo, Eduardo R.; Thompon, Damien; Del Barco, Enrique; Nijhuis, Christian A.

    2016-05-01

    We present a theoretical analysis aimed at understanding electrical conduction in molecular tunnel junctions. We focus on discussing the validity of coherent versus incoherent theoretical formulations for single-level tunneling to explain experimental results obtained under a wide range of experimental conditions, including measurements in individual molecules connecting the leads of electromigrated single-electron transistors and junctions of self-assembled monolayers (SAM) of molecules sandwiched between two macroscopic contacts. We show that the restriction of transport through a single level in solid state junctions (no solvent) makes coherent and incoherent tunneling formalisms indistinguishable when only one level participates in transport. Similar to Marcus relaxation processes in wet electrochemistry, the thermal broadening of the Fermi distribution describing the electronic occupation energies in the electrodes accounts for the exponential dependence of the tunneling current on temperature. We demonstrate that a single-level tunnel model satisfactorily explains experimental results obtained in three different molecular junctions (both single-molecule and SAM-based) formed by ferrocene-based molecules. Among other things, we use the model to map the electrostatic potential profile in EGaIn-based SAM junctions in which the ferrocene unit is placed at different positions within the molecule, and we find that electrical screening gives rise to a strongly non-linear profile across the junction.

  20. Local mechanical forces promote polarized junctional assembly and axis elongation in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Jessica C; Fernandez-Gonzalez, Rodrigo

    2016-01-01

    Axis elongation is a conserved process in which the head-to-tail or anterior-posterior (AP) axis of an embryo extends. In Drosophila, cellular rearrangements drive axis elongation. Cells exchange neighbours by converging into transient multicellular vertices which resolve through the assembly of new cell interfaces parallel to the AP axis. We found that new interfaces elongate in pulses correlated with periodic contractions of the surrounding cells. Inhibiting actomyosin contractility globally, or specifically in the cells around multicellular vertices, disrupted the rate and directionality of new interface assembly. Laser ablation indicated that new interfaces sustained greater tension than non-elongating ones. We developed a method to apply ectopic tension and found that increasing AP tension locally increased the elongation rate of new edges by more than twofold. Increasing dorsal-ventral tension resulted in vertex resolution perpendicular to the AP direction. We propose that local, periodic contractile forces polarize vertex resolution to drive Drosophila axis elongation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10757.001 PMID:26747941

  1. Alterations in cell cholesterol content modulate Ca(2+)-induced tight junction assembly by MDCK cells.

    PubMed

    Stankewich, M C; Francis, S A; Vu, Q U; Schneeberger, E E; Lynch, R D

    1996-08-01

    Transepithelial electrical resistance (TER), a measure of tight junction (TJ) barrier function, develops more rapidly and reaches higher values after preincubation of MDCK cells for 24 h with 2 microM Lovastatin (lova), an inhibitor of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase. While this effect was attributed to a 30% fall in cholesterol (CH), possible effects of lova on the supply of prenyl group precursors could not be excluded. In the current study, strategies were devised to examine effects on TER of agents that simultaneously lower CH and increase the flux of intermediates through the CH biosynthetic pathway. Zaragozic acid, 20 microM, an inhibitor of squalene synthase known to increase the synthesis of isoprenoids and levels of prenylated proteins, lowered cell CH by 30% after 24 h, while accelerating development of TER in the same manner as lova. TER was also enhanced, despite a 23% increase in the rate of [3H]acetate incorporation into CH, when total CH was reduced by 45% during a 2-h incubation with 2 mM methyl beta-cyclodextrin (MBCD), an agent that stimulates CH efflux from cells. The fact that the rate of TER development was diminished when cell CH content was elevated by incubation with a complex of CH and MBCD is further evidence that this sterol modulates development of the epithelial barrier. Cell associated CH derived from the complex was similar to endogenous CH with respect to its accessibility to cholesterol oxidase. Lova's effect on TER was diminished when 5 micrograms/mL of CH was added to the medium during the last 11 h of incubation with lova. PMID:8869884

  2. Structures and electrical properties of single nanoparticle junctions assembled using LaC2-encapsulating carbon nanocapsules

    PubMed Central

    Tezura, Manabu; Kizuka, Tokushi

    2016-01-01

    As the miniaturization of integrated circuits advances, electronics using single molecules and nanosize particles are being studied increasingly. Single nanoparticle junctions (SNPJs) consist of two electrodes sandwiching a single nanoparticle. Nanocarbons with nanospaces in their center, such as fullerenes, carbon nanotubes, and carbon nanocapsules (CNCs), are expected to be elements of advanced SNPJs. In this study, SNPJs were assembled using lanthanum dicarbide (LaC2)-encapsulating CNCs and two gold (Au) electrodes by a nanotip operation inside a high-resolution transmission electron microscope. The atomic configuration and electrical resistance of the SNPJs were investigated in situ. The results implied that the electrical resistance of the SNPJ depended on the interface structures of the contacts between the CNC and Au electrodes, i.e., the contact electrical resistance, and the greatest portion of the current through the SNPJ flowed along the outermost carbon layer of the CNC. Thus, the resistance of the SNPJs using the CNCs was demonstrated and the electrical conduction mechanism of one of the CNC was discussed in this study. PMID:27412856

  3. Structures and electrical properties of single nanoparticle junctions assembled using LaC2-encapsulating carbon nanocapsules.

    PubMed

    Tezura, Manabu; Kizuka, Tokushi

    2016-01-01

    As the miniaturization of integrated circuits advances, electronics using single molecules and nanosize particles are being studied increasingly. Single nanoparticle junctions (SNPJs) consist of two electrodes sandwiching a single nanoparticle. Nanocarbons with nanospaces in their center, such as fullerenes, carbon nanotubes, and carbon nanocapsules (CNCs), are expected to be elements of advanced SNPJs. In this study, SNPJs were assembled using lanthanum dicarbide (LaC2)-encapsulating CNCs and two gold (Au) electrodes by a nanotip operation inside a high-resolution transmission electron microscope. The atomic configuration and electrical resistance of the SNPJs were investigated in situ. The results implied that the electrical resistance of the SNPJ depended on the interface structures of the contacts between the CNC and Au electrodes, i.e., the contact electrical resistance, and the greatest portion of the current through the SNPJ flowed along the outermost carbon layer of the CNC. Thus, the resistance of the SNPJs using the CNCs was demonstrated and the electrical conduction mechanism of one of the CNC was discussed in this study. PMID:27412856

  4. Structures and electrical properties of single nanoparticle junctions assembled using LaC2-encapsulating carbon nanocapsules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tezura, Manabu; Kizuka, Tokushi

    2016-07-01

    As the miniaturization of integrated circuits advances, electronics using single molecules and nanosize particles are being studied increasingly. Single nanoparticle junctions (SNPJs) consist of two electrodes sandwiching a single nanoparticle. Nanocarbons with nanospaces in their center, such as fullerenes, carbon nanotubes, and carbon nanocapsules (CNCs), are expected to be elements of advanced SNPJs. In this study, SNPJs were assembled using lanthanum dicarbide (LaC2)-encapsulating CNCs and two gold (Au) electrodes by a nanotip operation inside a high-resolution transmission electron microscope. The atomic configuration and electrical resistance of the SNPJs were investigated in situ. The results implied that the electrical resistance of the SNPJ depended on the interface structures of the contacts between the CNC and Au electrodes, i.e., the contact electrical resistance, and the greatest portion of the current through the SNPJ flowed along the outermost carbon layer of the CNC. Thus, the resistance of the SNPJs using the CNCs was demonstrated and the electrical conduction mechanism of one of the CNC was discussed in this study.

  5. Precise subnanometer plasmonic junctions for SERS within gold nanoparticle assemblies using cucurbit[n]uril "glue".

    PubMed

    Taylor, Richard W; Lee, Tung-Chun; Scherman, Oren A; Esteban, Ruben; Aizpurua, Javier; Huang, Fu Min; Baumberg, Jeremy J; Mahajan, Sumeet

    2011-05-24

    Cucurbit[n]urils (CB[n]) are macrocyclic host molecules with subnanometer dimensions capable of binding to gold surfaces. Aggregation of gold nanoparticles with CB[n] produces a repeatable, fixed, and rigid interparticle separation of 0.9 nm, and thus such assemblies possess distinct and exquisitely sensitive plasmonics. Understanding the plasmonic evolution is key to their use as powerful SERS substrates. Furthermore, this unique spatial control permits fast nanoscale probing of the plasmonics of the aggregates "glued" together by CBs within different kinetic regimes using simultaneous extinction and SERS measurements. The kinetic rates determine the topology of the aggregates including the constituent structural motifs and allow the identification of discrete plasmon modes which are attributed to disordered chains of increasing lengths by theoretical simulations. The CBs directly report the near-field strength of the nanojunctions they create via their own SERS, allowing calibration of the enhancement. Owing to the unique barrel-shaped geometry of CB[n] and their ability to bind "guest" molecules, the aggregates afford a new type of in situ self-calibrated and reliable SERS substrate where molecules can be selectively trapped by the CB[n] and exposed to the nanojunction plasmonic field. Using this concept, a powerful molecular-recognition-based SERS assay is demonstrated by selective cucurbit[n]uril host-guest complexation. PMID:21488693

  6. Hepatocyte growth factor/scatter factor effects on epithelia. Regulation of intercellular junctions in transformed and nontransformed cell lines, basolateral polarization of c-met receptor in transformed and natural intestinal epithelia, and induction of rapid wound repair in a transformed model epithelium.

    PubMed

    Nusrat, A; Parkos, C A; Bacarra, A E; Godowski, P J; Delp-Archer, C; Rosen, E M; Madara, J L

    1994-05-01

    Intestinal epithelial cells rest on a fibroblast sheath. Thus, factors produced by these fibroblasts may influence epithelial function in a paracrine fashion. We examined modulation of intestinal epithelial function by one such fibroblast product, scatter factor/hepatocyte growth factor (HGF/SF). This effect was studied in vitro by using model T84 intestinal epithelial cells. When applied to confluent T84 monolayers, HGF/SF attenuates transepithelial resistance to passive ion flow in a dose-dependent manner (maximum fall at 300 ng/ml, 28% control monolayer resistance, P < 0.001, ED50 of 1.2 nM), t1/2 of 20 h. This functional effect of HGF/SF and distribution of its receptor, c-met, are polarized to the basolateral membranes of T84 intestinal epithelial cells. HGF/SF effects on resistance are not attributable to altered transcellular resistance (opening of Cl- and/or basolateral K+ channels), cytotoxicity, or enhanced cell proliferation; they therefore represent specific regulation of paracellular tight junction resistance. Analysis with biochemically purified rodent HGF/SF and Madin-Darby canine kidney cells reveals that effects on paracellular tight junctions also occur in other nontransformed epithelia. Binding of HGF/SF to its receptor in T84 intestinal epithelial cells is accompanied by tyrosine phosphorylation of the receptor. Because loosening of intercellular junctions between cells could facilitate separation, spreading, and migration of epithelial cells during physiologic processes such as wound resealing, we determined the effects of HGF/SF on intestinal epithelial wound resealing using our previously published in vitro model (Nusrat, A., C. Delp, and J. L. Madara. 1992. J. Clin. Invest. 89:1501-1511). HGF/SF markedly enhanced wound closure (> 450% increase in rate, P < 0.001) by influencing the migratory and spreading response in not only cells adjoining the wound but also cells many positions removed from the wound. We thus speculate that HGF/SF may

  7. Intercellular Ca2+ waves in mechanically stimulated articular chondrocytes.

    PubMed

    D'Andrea, P; Calabrese, A; Capozzi, I; Grandolfo, M; Tonon, R; Vittur, F

    2000-01-01

    Articular cartilage is a tissue designed to withstand compression during joint movement and, in vivo, is subjected to a wide range of mechanical loading forces. Mechanosensitivity has been demonstrated to influence chondrocyte metabolism and cartilage homeostasis, but the mechanisms underlying mechanotransduction in these cells are poorly understood. In many cell types mechanical stimulation induces increases of the cytosolic Ca2+ concentration that propagates from cell to cell as an intercellular Ca2+ wave. Cell-to-cell communication through gap junctions underlies tissue co-ordination of metabolism and sensitivity to extracellular stimuli: gap junctional permeability to intracellular second messengers allows signal transduction pathways to be shared among several cells, ultimately resulting in co-ordinated tissue responses. Mechanically-induced Ca2+ signalling was investigated with digital fluorescence video imaging in primary cultures of rabbit articular chondrocytes. Mechanical stimulation of a single cell, obtained by briefly distorting the plasmamembrane with a micropipette, induced a wave of increased Ca2+ that was communicated to surrounding cells. Intercellular Ca2+ spreading was inhibited by 18 alpha-glycyrrhetinic acid, suggesting the involvement of gap junctions in signal propagation. The functional expression of gap junctions was assessed, in confluent chondrocyte cultures, by the intercellular transfer of Lucifer yellow dye in microinjection experiments while the expression of connexin 43 could be detected in Western blots. A series of pharmacological tools known to interfere with the cell calcium handling capacity were employed to investigate the mechanism of mechanically-induced Ca2+ signalling. In the absence of extracellular Ca2+ mechanical stimulation induced communicated Ca2+ waves similar to controls. Mechanical stress induced Ca2+ influx both in the stimulated chondrocyte but not in the adjacent cells, as assessed by the Mn2+ quenching

  8. Microtubule plus-end and minus-end capture at adherens junctions is involved in the assembly of apico-basal arrays in polarised epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Bellett, Gemma; Carter, Jane M; Keynton, Jennifer; Goldspink, Deborah; James, Colin; Moss, David K; Mogensen, Mette M

    2009-10-01

    Apico-basal polarisation of epithelial cells involves a dramatic reorganisation of the microtubule cytoskeleton. The classic radial array of microtubules focused on a centrally located centrosome typical of many animal cells is lost or greatly reduced and a non-centrosomal apico-basal array develops. The molecules and mechanisms responsible for the assembly and positioning of these non-centrosomal microtubules have not been fully elucidated. Using a Nocodazole induced regrowth assay in invitro culture (MDCK) and in situ epithelial (cochlear Kolliker's) cell models we establish that the apico-basal array originates from the centrosome and that the non-centrosomal microtubule minus-end anchoring sites do not contribute significantly to their nucleation. Confocal and electron microscopy revealed that an extended radial array assembles with microtubule plus-ends targeting cadheren sites at adherens junctions and EB1 and CLIP-170 co-localising with beta-catenin and dynein clusters at the junction sites. The extended radial array is likely to be a vital intermediate step in the assembly process with cortical anchored dynein providing the mechanical force required for microtubule release, translocation and capture. Ultrastructural analyses of the apico-basal arrays in fully polarised MDCK and Kolliker's cells revealed microtubule minus-end association with the most apical adherens junction (Zonula adherens). We propose that a release and capture model involving both microtubule plus- and minus-end capture at adherens junctions is responsible for the generation of non-centrosomal apico-basal arrays in most centrosome containing polarised epithelial cells. PMID:19479825

  9. Intercellular calcium waves in glial cells with bistable dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Fang; Shuai, Jianwei

    2011-04-01

    A two-dimensional model is proposed for intercellular calcium (Ca2 +) waves with Ca2 +-induced IP3 regeneration and the diffusion of IP3 through gap junctions. Many experimental observations in glial cells, i.e. responding to local mechanical stimulation, glutamate application, mechanical stimulation followed by ACh application, and glutamate followed by mechanical stimulation, are reproduced and classified by the model. We show that a glial cell model with bistable dynamics, i.e. a Ca2 + oscillation state coexisting with a fixed point, can cause a prolonged plateau of Ca2 + signals in the cells nearby the stimulated cell when the cell network responds to the local mechanical stimulation.

  10. RhoA-JNK Regulates the E-Cadherin Junctions of Human Gingival Epithelial Cells.

    PubMed

    Lee, G; Kim, H J; Kim, H-M

    2016-03-01

    The junctional epithelium (JE) is unique with regard to its wide intercellular spaces and sparsely developed intercellular junctions. Thus, knowledge of the molecular mechanisms that regulate the formation of the intercellular junctions of the junctional epithelium may be essential to understand the pathophysiology of the JE. HOK-16B cells, a normal human gingival epithelial cell line, were used to identify the molecules involved in the regulation of the formation of intercellular E-cadherin junctions between human gingival epithelial cells. Activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) disrupted the intercellular junctions through the dissociation of E-cadherin. The role of JNK in the formation of these E-cadherin junctions was further confirmed by demonstrating that JNK inhibition induced the formation of intercellular E-cadherin junctions. The upstream signaling of JNK was also examined. Activation of the small GTPase RhoA disrupted the formation of E-cadherin junctions between HOK-16B cells, which was accompanied by JNK activation. Disruption of these intercellular junctions upon RhoA activation was prevented when JNK activity was inhibited. In contrast, RhoA inactivation led to HOK-16B cell aggregation and the formation of intercellular junctions, even under conditions in which the cellular junctions were naturally disrupted by growth on a strongly adhesive surface. Furthermore, the JE of mouse molars had high JNK activity associated with low E-cadherin expression, which was reversed in the other gingival epithelia, including the sulcular epithelium. Interestingly, JNK activity was increased in cells grown on a solid surface, where cells showed higher RhoA activity than those grown on soft surfaces. Together, these results indicate that the decreased formation of intercellular E-cadherin junctions within the JE may be coupled to high JNK activity, which is activated by the upregulation of RhoA on solid tooth surfaces. PMID:26635280

  11. Melatonin modulates intercellular communication among cultured chick astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Peters, Jennifer L; Cassone, Vincent M; Zoran, Mark J

    2005-01-01

    Melatonin, a pineal neurohormone, mediates circadian and seasonal processes in birds and mammals. Diencephalic astrocytes are sites of action, at least in birds, since they express melatonin receptors and melatonin affects their metabolism. We tested whether astrocytic calcium waves are also modulated by melatonin. Calcium waves, which we found to be regulated in cultured chick glial cells by an IP(3)-dependent mechanism, were potentiated by physiological concentrations of melatonin. Melatonin also increased resting calcium levels and reduced gap junctional coupling among astrocytes, at concentrations that facilitated calcium waves. These modulatory effects were diminished by melatonin receptor blockade and pertussis toxin (PTX). Thus, melatonin induced a functional shift in the mode of intercellular communication, between junctional coupling and calcium waves, among glial cells. We suggest a mechanism where neuroglial physiology, involving GTP-binding protein signaling pathways, links rhythmic circadian outputs to pervasive neurobehavioral states. PMID:15621008

  12. Modeling intercellular interactions during carcinogenesis.

    PubMed

    Sachs, Rainer K; Chan, Michael; Hlatky, Lynn; Hahnfeldt, Philip

    2005-09-01

    By modulating the microenvironment of malignant or premalignant cells, inhibitory or stimulatory signals from nearby cells can play a key role in carcinogenesis. However, current commonly used quantitative models for induction of cancers by ionizing radiation focus on single cells and their progeny. Intercellular interactions are neglected or assumed to be confined to unidirectional radiation bystander effect signals from cells of the same tissue type. We here formulate a parsimoniously parameterized two-stage logistic (TSL) carcinogenesis model that incorporates some effects of intercellular interactions during the growth of premalignant cells. We show that for baseline tumor rates, involving no radiation apart from background radiation, this TSL model gives acceptable fits to a number of data sets. Specifically, it gives the same baseline hazard function, using the same number of adjustable parameters, as does the commonly used two-stage clonal expansion (TSCE) model, so it is automatically applicable to the many data sets on baseline cancer that have been analyzed using the TSCE model. For perturbations of baseline rates due to radiation, the models differ. We argue from epidemiological and laboratory evidence, especially results for the atomic bomb survivors, that for radiation carcinogenesis the TSL model gives results at least as realistic as the TSCE or similar models, despite involving fewer adjustable parameters in many cases. PMID:16137206

  13. Integration and Modulation of Intercellular Signaling Underlying Blood Flow Control

    PubMed Central

    Segal, Steven S.

    2015-01-01

    Vascular resistance networks control tissue blood flow in concert with regulating arterial perfusion pressure. In response to increased metabolic demand, vasodilation arising in arteriolar networks ascends to encompass proximal feed arteries. By reducing resistance upstream, ascending vasodilation (AVD) increases blood flow into the microcirculation. Once initiated [e.g., through local activation of K+ channels in endothelial cells (ECs)], hyperpolarization is conducted through gap junctions along the endothelium. Via EC projections through the internal elastic lamina, hyperpolarization spreads into the surrounding smooth muscle cells (SMCs) through myoendothelial gap junctions (MEGJs) to promote their relaxation. Intercellular signaling through electrical signal transmission (i.e., cell-to-cell conduction) can thereby coordinate vasodilation along and among the branches of microvascular resistance networks. Perivascular sympathetic nerve fibers course through the adventitia and release norepinephrine to stimulate SMCs via α-adrenoreceptors to produce contraction. In turn, SMCs can signal ECs through MEGJs to activate K+ channels and attenuate sympathetic vasoconstriction. Activation of K+ channels along the endothelium will dissipate electrical signal transmission and inhibit AVD, thereby restricting blood flow into the microcirculation while maintaining peripheral resistance and perfusion pressure. This review explores the origins and nature of intercellular signaling governing blood flow control in skeletal muscle with respect to the interplay between AVD and sympathetic innervation. Whereas these interactions are integral to physical daily activity and athletic performance, resolving the interplay between respective signaling events provides insight into how selective interventions can improve tissue perfusion and oxygen delivery during vascular disease. PMID:26368324

  14. Short-range intercellular calcium signaling in bone.

    PubMed

    Jørgensen, Niklas Rye

    2005-01-01

    The regulation of bone turnover is a complex and finely tuned process. Many factors regulate bone remodeling, including hormones, growth factors, cytokines etc. However, little is known about the signals coupling bone formation to bone resorption, and how mechanical forces are translated into biological effects in bone. Intercellular calcium waves are increases in intracellular calcium concentration in single cells, subsequently propagating to adjacent cells, and can be a possible mechanism for the coupling of bone formation to bone resorption. The aim of the present studies was to investigate whether bone cells are capable of communicating via intercellular calcium signals, and determine by which mechanisms the cells propagate the signals. First, we found that osteoblastic cells can propagate intercellular calcium transients upon mechanical stimulation, and that there are two principally different mechanisms for this propagation. One mechanism involves the secretion of a nucleotide, possibly ATP, acting in an autocrine action to purinergic P2Y2 receptors on the neighboring cells, leading to intracellular IP3 generation and subsequent release of calcium from intracellular stores. The other mechanism involves the passage of a small messenger through gap junctions to the cytoplasm of the neighboring cells, inducing depolarization of the plasma membrane with subsequent opening of membrane bound voltage-operated calcium channels. Next, we found that osteoblasts can propagate these signals to osteoclasts as well. We demonstrated that paracrine action of ATP was responsible for the wave propagation, but now the purinergic P2X7 receptor was involved. Thus, the studies demonstrate that calcium signals can be propagated not only among osteoblasts, but also between osteoblasts and osteoclasts in response to mechanical stimulation. Thus, intercellular calcium signaling can be a mechanism by which mechanical stimuli on bone are translated into biological signals in bone cells

  15. Nutrient Starvation Decreases Cx43 Levels and Limits Intercellular Communication in Primary Bovine Corneal Endothelial Cells.

    PubMed

    D'hondt, Catheleyne; Iyyathurai, Jegan; Welkenhuyzen, Kirsten; Himpens, Bernard; Leybaert, Luc; Bultynck, Geert

    2016-06-01

    Connexin (Cx) proteins form large conductance channels which function as regulators of communication between neighboring cells via gap junctions and/or hemichannels. Intercellular communication is essential to coordinate cellular responses in tissues and organs, thereby fulfilling an essential role in the spreading of signaling, survival and death processes. Connexin 43 (Cx43), a major connexin isoform in brain and heart, is rapidly turned over. Recent studies implicated that autophagy, a lysosomal degradation pathway induced upon nutrient starvation, mediates connexins, including Cx43, degradation. Here, we examined the impact of nutrient starvation on endogenous Cx43-protein levels and endogenous Cx43-driven intercellular communication in primary bovine corneal endothelial cells (BCECs). Hank's Balanced Salt Solution (HBSS) was used as a starvation condition that induces autophagic flux without impacting the survival of the BCECs. Nutrient starvation of BCECs caused a rapid decline in Cx43-protein levels, both as gap junctions and as hemichannels. The time course of the decline in Cx43-protein levels coincided with the time course of the decline in intercellular communication, assessed as intercellular Ca(2+)-wave propagation in BCECs exposed to a single-cell mechanical stimulus. The decline in Cx43-protein levels, both as gap junctions and as hemichannels, could be prevented by the addition of bafilomycin A1, a lysosomal inhibitor, during the complete nutrient starvation period. Consistent with this, bafilomycin A1 significantly alleviated the decrease in intercellular Ca(2+)-wave propagation. This study further underpins the importance of autophagy as an important degradation pathway for Cx43 proteins during periods of nutrient deprivation, thereby impacting the ability of cells to perform intercellular communication. PMID:26873723

  16. α-Catenin phosphorylation promotes intercellular adhesion through a dual-kinase mechanism.

    PubMed

    Escobar, David J; Desai, Ridhdhi; Ishiyama, Noboru; Folmsbee, Stephen S; Novak, Megan N; Flozak, Annette S; Daugherty, Rebecca L; Mo, Rigen; Nanavati, Dhaval; Sarpal, Ritu; Leckband, Deborah; Ikura, Mitsu; Tepass, Ulrich; Gottardi, Cara J

    2015-03-15

    The cadherin-catenin adhesion complex is a key contributor to epithelial tissue stability and dynamic cell movements during development and tissue renewal. How this complex is regulated to accomplish these functions is not fully understood. We identified several phosphorylation sites in mammalian αE-catenin (also known as catenin α-1) and Drosophila α-Catenin within a flexible linker located between the middle (M)-region and the carboxy-terminal actin-binding domain. We show that this phospho-linker (P-linker) is the main phosphorylated region of α-catenin in cells and is sequentially modified at casein kinase 2 and 1 consensus sites. In Drosophila, the P-linker is required for normal α-catenin function during development and collective cell migration, although no obvious defects were found in cadherin-catenin complex assembly or adherens junction formation. In mammalian cells, non-phosphorylatable forms of α-catenin showed defects in intercellular adhesion using a mechanical dispersion assay. Epithelial sheets expressing phosphomimetic forms of α-catenin showed faster and more coordinated migrations after scratch wounding. These findings suggest that phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of the α-catenin P-linker are required for normal cadherin-catenin complex function in Drosophila and mammalian cells. PMID:25653389

  17. Sec3-containing exocyst complex is required for desmosome assembly in mammalian epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Andersen, Nicholas J; Yeaman, Charles

    2010-01-01

    The Exocyst is a conserved multisubunit complex involved in the docking of post-Golgi transport vesicles to sites of membrane remodeling during cellular processes such as polarization, migration, and division. In mammalian epithelial cells, Exocyst complexes are recruited to nascent sites of cell-cell contact in response to E-cadherin-mediated adhesive interactions, and this event is an important early step in the assembly of intercellular junctions. Sec3 has been hypothesized to function as a spatial landmark for the development of polarity in budding yeast, but its role in epithelial cells has not been investigated. Here, we provide evidence in support of a function for a Sec3-containing Exocyst complex in the assembly or maintenance of desmosomes, adhesive junctions that link intermediate filament networks to sites of strong intercellular adhesion. We show that Sec3 associates with a subset of Exocyst complexes that are enriched at desmosomes. Moreover, we found that membrane recruitment of Sec3 is dependent on cadherin-mediated adhesion but occurs later than that of the known Exocyst components Sec6 and Sec8 that are recruited to adherens junctions. RNA interference-mediated suppression of Sec3 expression led to specific impairment of both the morphology and function of desmosomes, without noticeable effect on adherens junctions. These results suggest that two different exocyst complexes may function in basal-lateral membrane trafficking and will enable us to better understand how exocytosis is spatially organized during development of epithelial plasma membrane domains. PMID:19889837

  18. NMII forms a contractile transcellular sarcomeric network to regulate apical cell junctions and tissue geometry.

    PubMed

    Ebrahim, Seham; Fujita, Tomoki; Millis, Bryan A; Kozin, Elliott; Ma, Xuefei; Kawamoto, Sachiyo; Baird, Michelle A; Davidson, Michael; Yonemura, Shigenobu; Hisa, Yasuo; Conti, Mary Anne; Adelstein, Robert S; Sakaguchi, Hirofumi; Kachar, Bechara

    2013-04-22

    Nonmuscle myosin II (NMII) is thought to be the master integrator of force within epithelial apical junctions, mediating epithelial tissue morphogenesis and tensional homeostasis. Mutations in NMII are associated with a number of diseases due to failures in cell-cell adhesion. However, the organization and the precise mechanism by which NMII generates and responds to tension along the intercellular junctional line are still not known. We discovered that periodic assemblies of bipolar NMII filaments interlace with perijunctional actin and α-actinin to form a continuous belt of muscle-like sarcomeric units (∼400-600 nm) around each epithelial cell. Remarkably, the sarcomeres of adjacent cells are precisely paired across the junctional line, forming an integrated, transcellular contractile network. The contraction/relaxation of paired sarcomeres concomitantly impacts changes in apical cell shape and tissue geometry. We show differential distribution of NMII isoforms across heterotypic junctions and evidence for compensation between isoforms. Our results provide a model for how NMII force generation is effected along the junctional perimeter of each cell and communicated across neighboring cells in the epithelial organization. The sarcomeric network also provides a well-defined target to investigate the multiple roles of NMII in junctional homeostasis as well as in development and disease. PMID:23562268

  19. NMII forms a contractile transcellular sarcomeric network to regulate apical cell junctions and tissue geometry

    PubMed Central

    Ebrahim, Seham; Fujita, Tomoki; Millis, Bryan A.; Kozin, Elliott; Ma, Xuefei; Kawamoto, Sachiyo; Baird, Michelle A.; Davidson, Michael; Yonemura, Shigenobu; Hisa, Yasuo; Conti, Mary Anne; Adelstein, Robert S.; Sakaguchi, Hirofumi; Kachar, Bechara

    2013-01-01

    Summary Nonmuscle myosin II (NMII) is thought to be the master integrator of force within epithelial apical junctions, mediating epithelial tissue morphogenesis and tensional homeostasis [1-3]. Mutations in NMII are associated with a number of diseases due to failures in cell-cell adhesion [4-8]. However, the organization and the precise mechanism by which NMII generates and responds to tension along the intercellular junctional line are still not known. We discovered that periodic assemblies of bipolar NMII filaments interlace with perijunctional actin and α-actinin to form a continuous belt of muscle-like sarcomeric units (~400 – 600 nm) around each epithelial cell. Remarkably, the sarcomeres of adjacent cells are precisely paired across the junctional line forming an integrated, transcellular contractile network. The contraction/relaxation of paired sarcomeres concomitantly impacts changes in apical cell shape and tissue geometry. We show differential distribution of NMII isoforms across heterotypic junctions and evidence for compensation between isoforms. Our results provide a model for how NMII force generation is effected along the junctional perimeter of each cell, and communicated across neighboring cells in the epithelial organization. The sarcomeric network also provides a well-defined target to investigate the multiple roles of NMII in junctional homeostasis as well as in development and disease. PMID:23562268

  20. Morphology-tunable assembly of periodically aligned Si nanowire and radial pn junction arrays for solar cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiaocheng; Liang, Kun; Tay, Beng Kang; Teo, Edwin H. T.

    2012-06-01

    Large-area periodically aligned Si nanowire (PASiNW) arrays have been fabricated on Si substrates via a templated catalytic chemical etching process. The diameter, length, packing density, and even the shape of Si nanowires (SiNWs) could be precisely controlled and tuned. A local coupling redox mechanism involving the reduction of H2O2 on silver particles and the dissolution of Si is responsible for formation of SiNWs. With the as-prepared SiNWs as templates, three kinds of PASiNW radial pn junction structures were fabricated on Si substrates via a solid-state phosphorous diffusion strategy and their applications in solar cells were also explored. The PASiNW radial pn junction-based solar cell with big diameter and interspace shows the highest power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 4.10% among the three kinds of devices. Further optimization, including surface passivation and electrode contact, is still needed for the higher efficiency PASiNW radial pn junction-based solar cells in the future.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2003-01-01

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

  2. Exosomes for Intramyocardial Intercellular Communication

    PubMed Central

    Cervio, Elisabetta; Moccetti, Tiziano; Vassalli, Giuseppe

    2015-01-01

    Cross-talk between different cell types plays central roles both in cardiac homeostasis and in adaptive responses of the heart to stress. Cardiomyocytes (CMs) send biological messages to the other cell types present in the heart including endothelial cells (ECs) and fibroblasts. In turn, CMs receive messages from these cells. Recent evidence has now established that exosomes, nanosized secreted extracellular vesicles, are crucial mediators of such messages. CMs, ECs, cardiac fibroblasts, and cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs) release exosomes carrying nonrandom subsets of proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids present in their cells of origin. Exosomes secreted from CMs are internalized by fibroblasts and regulate gene expression in these cells as well as in ECs. CPC-derived exosomes protect CMs against apoptosis while also stimulating angiogenesis. They are rich in cardioprotective and proangiogenic microRNAs such as miR-146, miR-210, and miR-132. When injected into infracted hearts in vivo, CPC-derived exosomes reduce infarct size and improve cardiac function. Thus, exosomes are emerging both as key mediators of intercellular communication in the heart and as therapeutic candidates for heart disease. PMID:26089917

  3. Axonal Ensheathment and Intercellular Barrier Formation in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Blauth, Kevin; Banerjee, Swati; Bhat, Manzoor A.

    2014-01-01

    Glial cells are critical players in every major aspect of nervous system development, function, and disease. Other than their traditional supportive role, glial cells perform a variety of important functions such as myelination, synapse formation and plasticity, and establishment of blood–brain and blood–nerve barriers in the nervous system. Recent studies highlight the striking functional similarities between Drosophila and vertebrate glia. In both systems, glial cells play an essential role in neural ensheathment thereby isolating the nervous system and help to create a local ionic microenvironment for conduction of nerve impulses. Here, we review the anatomical aspects and the molecular players that underlie ensheathment during different stages of nervous system development in Drosophila and how these processes lead to the organization of neuroglial junctions. We also discuss some key aspects of the invertebrate axonal ensheathment and junctional organization with that of vertebrate myelination and axon–glial interactions. Finally, we highlight the importance of intercellular junctions in barrier formation in various cellular contexts in Drosophila. We speculate that unraveling the genetic and molecular mechanisms of ensheathment across species might provide key insights into human myelin-related disorders and help in designing therapeutic interventions. PMID:20801419

  4. Control of cell-cell forces and collective cell dynamics by the intercellular adhesome

    PubMed Central

    Bazellières, Elsa; Conte, Vito; Elosegui-Artola, Alberto; Serra-Picamal, Xavier; Bintanel-Morcillo, María; Roca-Cusachs, Pere; Muñoz, José J; Sales-Pardo, Marta; Guimerà, Roger; Trepat, Xavier

    2015-01-01

    Dynamics of epithelial tissues determines key processes in development, tissue healing, and cancer invasion. These processes are critically influenced by cell-cell adhesion forces. However, the identity of the proteins that resist and transmit forces at cell-cell junctions remains unclear, and how these proteins control tissue dynamics is largely unknown. Here we provide a systematic study of the interplay between cell-cell adhesion proteins, intercellular forces, and epithelial tissue dynamics. We show that collective cellular responses to selective perturbations of the intercellular adhesome conform to three mechanical phenotypes. These phenotypes are controlled by different molecular modules and characterized by distinct relationships between cellular kinematics and intercellular forces. We show that these forces and their rates can be predicted by the concentrations of cadherins and catenins. Unexpectedly, we identified different mechanical roles for P-cadherin and E-cadherin; while P-cadherin predicts levels of intercellular force, E-cadherin predicts the rate at which intercellular force builds up. PMID:25812522

  5. Novel mutations in the LAMC2 gene in non-Herlitz junctional epidermolysis bullosa: effects on laminin-5 assembly, secretion, and deposition.

    PubMed

    Castiglia, D; Posteraro, P; Spirito, F; Pinola, M; Angelo, C; Puddu, P; Meneguzzi, G; Zambruno, G

    2001-09-01

    Laminin-5 is the major adhesion ligand of epithelial cells. Mutations in the three genes (LAMA3, LAMB3, LAMC2) encoding the laminin-5 chains cause junctional epidermolysis bullosa, a clinically and genetically heterogeneous blistering skin disease. Here, we describe a non-Herlitz junctional epidermolysis bullosa patient, compound heterozygote for two novel mutations affecting the LAMC2 gene. The mutation in the paternal allele is a de novo splice site mutation (522-1G-->A) that results in in-frame skipping of exon 4 and synthesis of a mutated gamma2 polypeptide (gamma2Delta4) carrying a 33 amino acid deletion within the N-terminal domain V. The maternal mutation is a one base pair insertion (3511insA) in the 3' terminal exon of LAMC2 resulting in a frameshift and a premature termination codon. Mutation 3511insA is predicted to lead to the synthesis of a gamma2 polypeptide (gamma2t) disrupted in its alpha-helical C-terminal structure and truncated of the last 25 amino acids. Keratinocytes isolated from the patient's skin showed a markedly decreased level of gamma2 chain mRNA and secreted scant amounts of laminin-5, which undergoes physiologic proteolytic processing. To investigate the biologic function of the laminin-5 molecules synthesized by the patient, mutant gamma2 cDNAs were transiently expressed in gamma2-null keratinocytes. Transfection of the gamma2Delta4 cDNA resulted in restoration of laminin-5 deposition onto the culture substrate, which demonstrates that the gamma2 polypeptides carrying a deletion in domain V, upstream of the gamma2 proteolytic cleavage site, are assembled into native laminin-5 that is secreted and extracellularly processed. In contrast, transfection of a mutant cDNA expressing the gamma2t chain failed to restore laminin-5 immunoreactivity, which indicates that integrity of the gamma2 C-terminal amino acid sequences is required for laminin-5 assembly. These results correlate for the first time a functional alteration in a laminin-5

  6. Septal Junctions in Filamentous Heterocyst-Forming Cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Flores, Enrique; Herrero, Antonia; Forchhammer, Karl; Maldener, Iris

    2016-02-01

    In the filaments of heterocyst-forming cyanobacteria, septal junctions that traverse the septal peptidoglycan join adjacent cells, allowing intercellular communication. Perforations in the septal peptidoglycan have been observed, and proteins involved in the formation of such perforations and putative protein components of the septal junctions have been identified, but their relationships are debated. PMID:26748968

  7. Mix and match: Investigating heteromeric and heterotypic gap junction channels in model systems and native tissues

    PubMed Central

    Koval, Michael; Molina, Samuel A.; Burt, Janis M.

    2014-01-01

    This review is based in part on a roundtable discussion session: “Physiological roles for heterotypic/heteromeric channels” at the 2013 International Gap Junction Conference (IGJC 2013) in Charleston, South Carolina. It is well recognized that multiple connexins can specifically co-assemble to form mixed gap junction channels with unique properties as a means to regulate intercellular communication. Compatibility determinants for both heteromeric and heterotypic gap junction channel formation have been identified and associated with specific connexin amino acid motifs. Hetero-oligomerization is also a regulated process; differences in connexin quality control and monomer stability are likely to play integral roles to control interactions between compatible connexins. Gap junctions in oligodendrocyte:astrocyte communication and in the cardiovascular system have emerged as key systems where heterotypic and heteromeric channels have unique physiologic roles. There are several methodologies to study heteromeric and heterotypic channels that are best applied to either heterologous expression systems, native tissues or both. There remains a need to use and develop different experimental approaches in order to understand the prevalence and roles for mixed gap junction channels in human physiology. PMID:24561196

  8. CRSBP-1/LYVE-1 ligands disrupt lymphatic intercellular adhesion by inducing tyrosine phosphorylation and internalization of VE-cadherin

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Wei-Hsien; Liu, I-Hua; Tsai, Cheng C.; Johnson, Frank E.; Huang, Shuan Shian; Huang, Jung San

    2011-01-01

    Cell-surface retention sequence (CRS) binding protein (CRSBP-1) is a membrane glycoprotein identified by its ability to bind PDGF-BB and VEGF-A via their CRS motifs (clusters of basic amino acid residues). CRSBP-1 is identical to LYVE-1 and exhibits dual ligand (CRS-containing proteins and hyaluronic acid) binding activity, suggesting the importance of CRSBP-1 ligands in lymphatic function. Here, we show that CRSBP-1 ligands induce disruption of VE-cadherin-mediated intercellular adhesion and opening of intercellular junctions in lymphatic endothelial cell (LEC) monolayers as determined by immunofluorescence microscopy and Transwell permeability assay. This occurs by interaction with CRSBP-1 in the CRSBP-1–PDGFβR–β-catenin complex, resulting in tyrosine phosphorylation of the complex, dissociation of β-catenin and p120-catenin from VE-cadherin, and internalization of VE-cadherin. Pretreatment of LECs with a PDGFβR kinase inhibitor abolishes ligand-stimulated tyrosine phosphorylation of VE-cadherin, halts the ligand-induced disruption of VE-cadherin intercellular adhesion and blocks the ligand-induced opening of intercellular junctions. These CRSBP-1 ligands also induce opening of lymphatic intercellular junctions that respond to PDGFβR kinase inhibitor in wild-type mice (but not in Crsbp1-null mice) as evidenced by increased transit of injected FITC–dextran and induced edema fluid from the interstitial space into lymphatic vessels. These results disclose a novel mechanism involved in the opening of lymphatic intercellular junctions. PMID:21444752

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

    PubMed

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

    2004-01-01

    Ischemic preconditioning increases the heart's tolerance to a subsequent longer ischemic period. The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of gap junction communication in simulated preconditioning in cultured neonatal rat cardiac myofibroblasts. Gap junctional intercellular communication was assessed by Lucifer yellow dye transfer. Preconditioning preserved intercellular coupling after prolonged ischemia. An initial reduction in coupling in response to the preconditioning stimulus was also observed. This may protect neighboring cells from damaging substances produced during subsequent regional ischemia in vivo, and may preserve gap junctional communication required for enhanced functional recovery during subsequent reperfusion. PMID:16247851

  10. Modular Nuclease-Responsive DNA Three-Way Junction-Based Dynamic Assembly of a DNA Device and Its Sensing Application.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Jing; Wang, Lei; Xu, Xiaowen; Wei, Haiping; Jiang, Wei

    2016-04-01

    Here, we explored a modular strategy for rational design of nuclease-responsive three-way junctions (TWJs) and fabricated a dynamic DNA device in a "plug-and-play" fashion. First, inactivated TWJs were designed, which contained three functional domains: the inaccessible toehold and branch migration domains, the specific sites of nucleases, and the auxiliary complementary sequence. The actions of different nucleases on their specific sites in TWJs caused the close proximity of the same toehold and branch migration domains, resulting in the activation of the TWJs and the formation of a universal trigger for the subsequent dynamic assembly. Second, two hairpins (H1 and H2) were introduced, which could coexist in a metastable state, initially to act as the components for the dynamic assembly. Once the trigger initiated the opening of H1 via TWJs-driven strand displacement, the cascade hybridization of hairpins immediately switched on, resulting in the formation of the concatemers of H1/H2 complex appending numerous integrated G-quadruplexes, which were used to obtain label-free signal readout. The inherent modularity of this design allowed us to fabricate a flexible DNA dynamic device and detect multiple nucleases through altering the recognition pattern slightly. Taking uracil-DNA glycosylase and CpG methyltransferase M.SssI as models, we successfully realized the butt joint between the uracil-DNA glycosylase and M.SssI recognition events and the dynamic assembly process. Furthermore, we achieved ultrasensitive assay of nuclease activity and the inhibitor screening. The DNA device proposed here will offer an adaptive and flexible tool for clinical diagnosis and anticancer drug discovery. PMID:26943244

  11. Deficiency of transcription factor Brn4 disrupts cochlear gap junction plaques in a model of DFN3 non-syndromic deafness.

    PubMed

    Kidokoro, Yoshinobu; Karasawa, Keiko; Minowa, Osamu; Sugitani, Yoshinobu; Noda, Tetsuo; Ikeda, Katsuhisa; Kamiya, Kazusaku

    2014-01-01

    Brn4, which encodes a POU transcription factor, is the gene responsible for DFN3, an X chromosome-linked, non-syndromic type of hearing loss. Brn4-deficient mice have a low endocochlear potential (EP), hearing loss, and ultrastructural alterations in spiral ligament fibrocytes, however the molecular pathology through which Brn4 deficiency causes low EP is still unclear. Mutations in the Gjb2 and Gjb6 genes encoding the gap junction proteins connexin26 (Cx26) and connexin30 (Cx30) genes, respectively, which encode gap junction proteins and are expressed in cochlear fibrocytes and non-sensory epithelial cells (i.e., cochlear supporting cells) to maintain the proper EP, are responsible for hereditary sensorineural deafness. It has been hypothesized that the gap junction in the cochlea provides an intercellular passage by which K+ is transported to maintain the EP at the high level necessary for sensory hair cell excitation. Here we analyzed the formation of gap junction plaques in cochlear supporting cells of Brn4-deficient mice at different stages by confocal microscopy and three-dimensional graphic reconstructions. Gap junctions from control mice, which are composed mainly of Cx26 and Cx30, formed linear plaques along the cell-cell junction sites with adjacent cells. These plaques formed pentagonal or hexagonal outlines of the normal inner sulcus cells and border cells. Gap junction plaques in Brn4-deficient mice did not, however, show the normal linear structure but instead formed small spots around the cell-cell junction sites. Gap junction lengths were significantly shorter, and the level of Cx26 and Cx30 was significantly reduced in Brn4-deficient mice compared with littermate controls. Thus the Brn4 mutation affected the assembly and localization of gap junction proteins at the cell borders of cochlear supporting cells, suggesting that Brn4 substantially contributes to cochlear gap junction properties to maintain the proper EP in cochleae, similar to connexin

  12. The tight junction: a multifunctional complex.

    PubMed

    Schneeberger, Eveline E; Lynch, Robert D

    2004-06-01

    Multicellular organisms are separated from the external environment by a layer of epithelial cells whose integrity is maintained by intercellular junctional complexes composed of tight junctions, adherens junctions, and desmosomes, whereas gap junctions provide for intercellular communication. The aim of this review is to present an updated overview of recent developments in the area of tight junction biology. In a relatively short time, our knowledge of the tight junction has evolved from a relatively simple view of it being a permeability barrier in the paracellular space and a fence in the plane of the plasma membrane to one of it acting as a multicomponent, multifunctional complex that is involved in regulating numerous and diverse cell functions. A group of integral membrane proteins-occludin, claudins, and junction adhesion molecules-interact with an increasingly complex array of tight junction plaque proteins not only to regulate paracellular solute and water flux but also to integrate such diverse processes as gene transcription, tumor suppression, cell proliferation, and cell polarity. PMID:15151915

  13. Oxidative Stress, Lens Gap Junctions, and Cataracts

    PubMed Central

    Beyer, Eric C.

    2009-01-01

    Abstract The eye lens is constantly subjected to oxidative stress from radiation and other sources. The lens has several mechanisms to protect its components from oxidative stress and to maintain its redox state, including enzymatic pathways and high concentrations of ascorbate and reduced glutathione. With aging, accumulation of oxidized lens components and decreased efficiency of repair mechanisms can contribute to the development of lens opacities or cataracts. Maintenance of transparency and homeostasis of the avascular lens depend on an extensive network of gap junctions. Communication through gap junction channels allows intercellular passage of molecules (up to 1 kDa) including antioxidants. Lens gap junctions and their constituent proteins, connexins (Cx43, Cx46, and Cx50), are also subject to the effects of oxidative stress. These observations suggest that oxidative stress-induced damage to connexins (and consequent altered intercellular communication) may contribute to cataract formation. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 11, 339–353. PMID:18831679

  14. Intercellular Communication in the Adaptive Immune System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakraborty, Arup

    2004-03-01

    Higher organisms, like humans, have an adaptive immune system that can respond to pathogens that have not been encountered before. T lymphocytes (T cells) are the orchestrators of the adaptive immune response. They interact with cells, called antigen presenting cells (APC), that display molecular signatures of pathogens. Recently, video microscopy experiments have revealed that when T cells detect antigen on APC surfaces, a spatially patterned supramolecular assembly of different types of molecules forms in the junction between cell membranes. This recognition motif is implicated in information transfer between APC and T cells, and so, is labeled the immunological synapse. The observation of synapse formation sparked two broad questions: How does the synapse form? Why does the synapse form? I will describe progress made in answering these fundamental questions in biology by synergistic use of statistical mechanical theory/computation, chemical engineering principles, and genetic and biochemical experiments. The talk will also touch upon mechanisms that may underlie the extreme sensitivity with which T cells discriminate between self and non-self.

  15. Eye lens membrane junctional microdomains: a comparison between healthy and pathological cases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buzhynskyy, Nikolay; Sens, Pierre; Behar-Cohen, Francine; Scheuring, Simon

    2011-08-01

    The eye lens is a transparent tissue constituted of tightly packed fiber cells. To maintain homeostasis and transparency of the lens, the circulation of water, ions and metabolites is required. Junctional microdomains connect the lens cells and ensure both tight cell-to-cell adhesion and intercellular flow of fluids through a microcirculation system. Here, we overview membrane morphology and tissue functional requirements of the mammalian lens. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) has opened up the possibility of visualizing the junctional microdomains at unprecedented submolecular resolution, revealing the supramolecular assembly of lens-specific aquaporin-0 (AQP0) and connexins (Cx). We compare the membrane protein assembly in healthy lenses with senile and diabetes-II cataract cases and novel data of the lens membranes from a congenital cataract. In the healthy case, AQP0s form characteristic square arrays confined by connexons. In the cases of senile and diabetes-II cataract patients, connexons were degraded, leading to malformation of AQP0 arrays and breakdown of the microcirculation system. In the congenital cataract, connexons are present, indicating probable non-membranous grounds for lens opacification. Further, we discuss the energetic aspects of the membrane organization in junctional microdomains. The AFM hence becomes a biomedical nano-imaging tool for the analysis of single-membrane protein supramolecular association in healthy and pathological membranes.

  16. [Gap junction and diabetic foot].

    PubMed

    Zou, Xiao-rong; Tao, Jian; Wang, Yun-kai

    2015-11-01

    Gap junctions play a critical role in electrical synchronization and exchange of small molecules between neighboring cells; connexins are a family of structurally related transmembrane proteins that assemble to form vertebrate gap junctions. Hyperglycemia changes the structure gap junction proteins and their expression, resulting in obstruction of neural regeneration, vascular function and wound healing, and also promoting vascular atherosclerosis. These pathogenic factors would cause diabetic foot ulcers. This article reviews the involvement of connexins in pathogenesis of diabetic foot. PMID:26822053

  17. Regulation of gap junction channels and hemichannels by phosphorylation and redox changes: a revision.

    PubMed

    Pogoda, Kristin; Kameritsch, Petra; Retamal, Mauricio A; Vega, José L

    2016-01-01

    Post-translational modifications of connexins play an important role in the regulation of gap junction and hemichannel permeability. The prerequisite for the formation of functional gap junction channels is the assembly of connexin proteins into hemichannels and their insertion into the membrane. Hemichannels can affect cellular processes by enabling the passage of signaling molecules between the intracellular and extracellular space. For the intercellular communication hemichannels from one cell have to dock to its counterparts on the opposing membrane of an adjacent cell to allow the transmission of signals via gap junctions from one cell to the other. The controlled opening of hemichannels and gating properties of complete gap junctions can be regulated via post-translational modifications of connexins. Not only channel gating, but also connexin trafficking and assembly into hemichannels can be affected by post-translational changes. Recent investigations have shown that connexins can be modified by phosphorylation/dephosphorylation, redox-related changes including effects of nitric oxide (NO), hydrogen sulfide (H2S) or carbon monoxide (CO), acetylation, methylation or ubiquitination. Most of the connexin isoforms are known to be phosphorylated, e.g. Cx43, one of the most studied connexin at all, has 21 reported phosphorylation sites. In this review, we provide an overview about the current knowledge and relevant research of responsible kinases, connexin phosphorylation sites and reported effects on gap junction and hemichannel regulation. Regarding the effects of oxidants we discuss the role of NO in different cell types and tissues and recent studies about modifications of connexins by CO and H2S. PMID:27229925

  18. Effects of ultraviolet radiation on intercellular communication in V79 Chinese hamster fibroblasts.

    PubMed

    Bånrud, H; Mikalsen, S O; Berg, K; Moan, J

    1994-02-01

    The effects of ultraviolet (UV) radiation on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in V79 Chinese hamster fibroblasts were studied by means of a dye transfer assay. Intercellular communication was shown to be altered by UVB (297/302 nm) and UVA (365 nm) radiation, the effect depending on the wavelength of exposure and time between irradiation and microinjection of the dye in the dye transfer assay. Exposure to 297/302 nm radiation induced a reduction in intercellular communication 6 min after exposure. Incubation of the cells post-irradiation reversed the inhibition of GJIC. From 2 to 24 h after exposure an increase in GJIC over the control cells was seen, with a maximum at 8 h post-irradiation. UVA (365 nm) radiation, on the other hand, induced an increase in the intercellular communication 6 min after irradiation. Incubation of the cells post-irradiation led to a decrease in the number of communicating cells, with a minimum seen 4 h after exposure. The reduction in communication observed after exposure to UVB and UVA was not correlated with similar modifications in the gap junction protein connexin43 as found when exposing the cells to the tumour promoter 12-O-tetradecanoyl-phorbol-13-acetate. For the higher fluences of UVA, a decrease in immunorecognizable connexin43 was seen, concomitant with a markedly increased background of higher mol. wt compounds. This may be due to UVA-induced crosslinking of connexin43. No correlation was found between changes in communication induced by UV radiation and levels of cyclic AMP. PMID:8313514

  19. Patterning of wound-induced intercellular Ca2+ flashes in a developing epithelium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narciso, Cody; Wu, Qinfeng; Brodskiy, Pavel; Garston, George; Baker, Ruth; Fletcher, Alexander; Zartman, Jeremiah

    2015-10-01

    Differential mechanical force distributions are increasingly recognized to provide important feedback into the control of an organ’s final size and shape. As a second messenger that integrates and relays mechanical information to the cell, calcium ions (Ca2+) are a prime candidate for providing important information on both the overall mechanical state of the tissue and resulting behavior at the individual-cell level during development. Still, how the spatiotemporal properties of Ca2+ transients reflect the underlying mechanical characteristics of tissues is still poorly understood. Here we use an established model system of an epithelial tissue, the Drosophila wing imaginal disc, to investigate how tissue properties impact the propagation of Ca2+ transients induced by laser ablation. The resulting intercellular Ca2+ flash is found to be mediated by inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate and depends on gap junction communication. Further, we find that intercellular Ca2+ transients show spatially non-uniform characteristics across the proximal-distal axis of the larval wing imaginal disc, which exhibit a gradient in cell size and anisotropy. A computational model of Ca2+ transients is employed to identify the principle factors explaining the spatiotemporal patterning dynamics of intercellular Ca2+ flashes. The relative Ca2+ flash anisotropy is principally explained by local cell shape anisotropy. Further, Ca2+ velocities are relatively uniform throughout the wing disc, irrespective of cell size or anisotropy. This can be explained by the opposing effects of cell diameter and cell elongation on intercellular Ca2+ propagation. Thus, intercellular Ca2+ transients follow lines of mechanical tension at velocities that are largely independent of tissue heterogeneity and reflect the mechanical state of the underlying tissue.

  20. Intercellular Redistribution of cAMP Underlies Selective Suppression of Cancer Cell Growth by Connexin26

    PubMed Central

    Polusani, Srikanth R.; Mathis, Sandra A.; Zucker, Shoshanna N.; Nicholson, Bruce J.

    2013-01-01

    Connexins (Cx), which constitute gap junction intercellular channels in vertebrates, have been shown to suppress transformed cell growth and tumorigenesis, but the mechanism(s) still remain largely speculative. Here, we define the molecular basis by which Cx26, but less frequently Cx43 or Cx32, selectively confer growth suppression on cancer cells. Functional intercellular coupling is shown to be required, producing partial blocks of the cell cycle due to prolonged activation of several mitogenic kinases. PKA is both necessary and sufficient for the Cx26 induced growth inhibition in low serum and the absence of anchorage. Activation of PKA was not associated with elevated cAMP levels, but appeared to result from a redistribution of cAMP throughout the cell population, eliminating the cell cycle oscillations in cAMP required for efficient cell cycle progression. Cx43 and Cx32 fail to mediate this redistribution as, unlike Cx26, these channels are closed during the G2/M phase of the cell cycle when cAMP levels peak. Comparisons of tumor cell lines indicate that this is a general pattern, with growth suppression by connexins occurring whenever cAMP oscillates with the cell cycle, and the gap junction remain open throughout the cell cycle. Thus, gap junctional coupling, in the absence of any external signals, provides a general means to limit the mitotic rate of cell populations. PMID:24312655

  1. Intercellular redistribution of cAMP underlies selective suppression of cancer cell growth by connexin26.

    PubMed

    Chandrasekhar, Anjana; Kalmykov, Edward A; Polusani, Srikanth R; Mathis, Sandra A; Zucker, Shoshanna N; Nicholson, Bruce J

    2013-01-01

    Connexins (Cx), which constitute gap junction intercellular channels in vertebrates, have been shown to suppress transformed cell growth and tumorigenesis, but the mechanism(s) still remain largely speculative. Here, we define the molecular basis by which Cx26, but less frequently Cx43 or Cx32, selectively confer growth suppression on cancer cells. Functional intercellular coupling is shown to be required, producing partial blocks of the cell cycle due to prolonged activation of several mitogenic kinases. PKA is both necessary and sufficient for the Cx26 induced growth inhibition in low serum and the absence of anchorage. Activation of PKA was not associated with elevated cAMP levels, but appeared to result from a redistribution of cAMP throughout the cell population, eliminating the cell cycle oscillations in cAMP required for efficient cell cycle progression. Cx43 and Cx32 fail to mediate this redistribution as, unlike Cx26, these channels are closed during the G2/M phase of the cell cycle when cAMP levels peak. Comparisons of tumor cell lines indicate that this is a general pattern, with growth suppression by connexins occurring whenever cAMP oscillates with the cell cycle, and the gap junction remain open throughout the cell cycle. Thus, gap junctional coupling, in the absence of any external signals, provides a general means to limit the mitotic rate of cell populations. PMID:24312655

  2. Intrinsically disordered proteins aggregate at fungal cell-to-cell channels and regulate intercellular connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Lai, Julian; Koh, Chuan Hock; Tjota, Monika; Pieuchot, Laurent; Raman, Vignesh; Chandrababu, Karthik Balakrishna; Yang, Daiwen; Wong, Limsoon; Jedd, Gregory

    2012-01-01

    Like animals and plants, multicellular fungi possess cell-to-cell channels (septal pores) that allow intercellular communication and transport. Here, using a combination of MS of Woronin body-associated proteins and a bioinformatics approach that identifies related proteins based on composition and character, we identify 17 septal pore-associated (SPA) proteins that localize to the septal pore in rings and pore-centered foci. SPA proteins are not homologous at the primary sequence level but share overall physical properties with intrinsically disordered proteins. Some SPA proteins form aggregates at the septal pore, and in vitro assembly assays suggest aggregation through a nonamyloidal mechanism involving mainly α-helical and disordered structures. SPA loss-of-function phenotypes include excessive septation, septal pore degeneration, and uncontrolled Woronin body activation. Together, our data identify the septal pore as a complex subcellular compartment and focal point for the assembly of unstructured proteins controlling diverse aspects of intercellular connectivity. PMID:22955885

  3. Intercellular Lipid Mediators and GPCR Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Im, Dong-Soon

    2013-01-01

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) are the largest superfamily of receptors responsible for signaling between cells and tissues, and because they play important physiological roles in homeostasis, they are major drug targets. New technologies have been developed for the identification of new ligands, new GPCR functions, and for drug discovery purposes. In particular, intercellular lipid mediators, such as, lysophosphatidic acid and sphingosine 1-phosphate have attracted much attention for drug discovery and this has resulted in the development of fingolimod (FTY-720) and AM095. The discovery of new intercellular lipid mediators and their GPCRs are discussed from the perspective of drug development. Lipid GPCRs for lysophospholipids, including lysophosphatidylserine, lysophosphatidylinositol, lysophosphatidylcholine, free fatty acids, fatty acid derivatives, and other lipid mediators are reviewed. PMID:24404331

  4. Intercellular Stress Reconstitution from Traction Force Data

    PubMed Central

    Zimmermann, Juliane; Hayes, Ryan L.; Basan, Markus; Onuchic, José N.; Rappel, Wouter-Jan; Levine, Herbert

    2014-01-01

    Cells migrate collectively during development, wound healing, and cancer metastasis. Recently, a method has been developed to recover intercellular stress in monolayers from measured traction forces upon the substrate. To calculate stress maps in two dimensions, the cell sheet was assumed to behave like an elastic material, and it remains unclear to what extent this assumption is valid. In this study, we simulate our recently developed model for collective cell migration, and compute intercellular stress maps using the method employed in the experiments. We also compute these maps using a method that does not depend on the traction forces or material properties. The two independently obtained stress patterns agree well for the parameters we have probed and provide a verification of the validity of the experimental method. PMID:25099794

  5. Mechanically induced intercellular calcium communication in confined endothelial structures.

    PubMed

    Junkin, Michael; Lu, Yi; Long, Juexuan; Deymier, Pierre A; Hoying, James B; Wong, Pak Kin

    2013-03-01

    Calcium signaling in the diverse vascular structures is regulated by a wide range of mechanical and biochemical factors to maintain essential physiological functions of the vasculature. To properly transmit information, the intercellular calcium communication mechanism must be robust against various conditions in the cellular microenvironment. Using plasma lithography geometric confinement, we investigate mechanically induced calcium wave propagation in networks of human umbilical vein endothelial cells organized. Endothelial cell networks with confined architectures were stimulated at the single cell level, including using capacitive force probes. Calcium wave propagation in the network was observed using fluorescence calcium imaging. We show that mechanically induced calcium signaling in the endothelial networks is dynamically regulated against a wide range of probing forces and repeated stimulations. The calcium wave is able to propagate consistently in various dimensions from monolayers to individual cell chains, and in different topologies from linear patterns to cell junctions. Our results reveal that calcium signaling provides a robust mechanism for cell-cell communication in networks of endothelial cells despite the diversity of the microenvironmental inputs and complexity of vascular structures. PMID:23267827

  6. Nanotube junctions

    DOEpatents

    Crespi, Vincent Henry; Cohen, Marvin Lou; Louie, Steven Gwon; Zettl, Alexander Karlwalte

    2004-12-28

    The present invention comprises a new nanoscale metal-semiconductor, semiconductor-semiconductor, or metal-metal junction, designed by introducing topological or chemical defects in the atomic structure of the nanotube. Nanotubes comprising adjacent sections having differing electrical properties are described. These nanotubes can be constructed from combinations of carbon, boron, nitrogen and other elements. The nanotube can be designed having different indices on either side of a junction point in a continuous tube so that the electrical properties on either side of the junction vary in a useful fashion. For example, the inventive nanotube may be electrically conducting on one side of a junction and semiconducting on the other side. An example of a semiconductor-metal junction is a Schottky barrier. Alternatively, the nanotube may exhibit different semiconductor properties on either side of the junction. Nanotubes containing heterojunctions, Schottky barriers, and metal-metal junctions are useful for microcircuitry.

  7. Nanotube junctions

    DOEpatents

    Crespi, Vincent Henry; Cohen, Marvin Lou; Louie, Steven Gwon Sheng; Zettl, Alexander Karlwalter

    2003-01-01

    The present invention comprises a new nanoscale metal-semiconductor, semiconductor-semiconductor, or metal-metal junction, designed by introducing topological or chemical defects in the atomic structure of the nanotube. Nanotubes comprising adjacent sections having differing electrical properties are described. These nanotubes can be constructed from combinations of carbon, boron, nitrogen and other elements. The nanotube can be designed having different indices on either side of a junction point in a continuous tube so that the electrical properties on either side of the junction vary in a useful fashion. For example, the inventive nanotube may be electrically conducting on one side of a junction and semiconducting on the other side. An example of a semiconductor-metal junction is a Schottky barrier. Alternatively, the nanotube may exhibit different semiconductor properties on either side of the junction. Nanotubes containing heterojunctions, Schottky barriers, and metal-metal junctions are useful for microcircuitry.

  8. The Intercellular Synchronization of Ca2+ Oscillations Evaluates Cx36-Dependent Coupling

    PubMed Central

    Bavamian, Sabine; Pontes, Helena; Cancela, José; Charollais, Anne; Startchik, Sergei; Van De Ville, Dimitri; Meda, Paolo

    2012-01-01

    Connexin36 (Cx36) plays an important role in insulin secretion by controlling the intercellular synchronization of Ca2+ transients induced during stimulation. The lack of drugs acting on Cx36 channels is a major limitation in further unraveling the molecular mechanism underlying this effect. To screen for such drugs, we have developed an assay allowing for a semi-automatic, fluorimetric quantification of Ca2+ transients in large populations of MIN6 cells. Here, we show that (1) compared to control cells, MIN6 cells with reduced Cx36 expression or function showed decreased synchrony of glucose-induced Ca2+ oscillations; (2) glibenclamide, a sulphonylurea which promotes Cx36 junctions and coupling, increased the number of synchronous MIN6 cells, whereas quinine, an antimalarial drug which inhibits Cx36-dependent coupling, decreased this proportion; (3) several drugs were identified that altered the intercellular Ca2+ synchronization, cell coupling and distribution of Cx36; (4) some of them also affected insulin content. The data indicate that the intercellular synchronization of Ca2+ oscillations provides a reliable and non-invasive measurement of Cx36-dependent coupling, which is useful to identify novel drugs affecting the function of β-cells, neurons, and neuron-related cells that express Cx36. PMID:22848521

  9. Intercellular electrical communication in the heart: a new, active role for the intercalated disk.

    PubMed

    Veeraraghavan, Rengasayee; Poelzing, Steven; Gourdie, Robert G

    2014-06-01

    Cardiac conduction is the propagation of electrical excitation through the heart and is responsible for triggering individual myocytes to contract in synchrony. Canonically, this process has been thought to occur electrotonically, by means of direct flow of ions from cell to cell. The intercalated disk (ID), the site of contact between adjacent myocytes, has been viewed as a structure composed of mechanical junctions that stabilize the apposition of cell membranes and gap junctions which constitute low resistance pathways between cells. However, emerging evidence suggests a more active role for structures within the ID in mediating intercellular electrical communication by means of non-canonical ephaptic mechanisms. This review will discuss the role of the ID in the context of the canonical, electrotonic view of conduction and highlight new, emerging possibilities of its playing a more active role in ephaptic coupling between cardiac myocytes. PMID:24735129

  10. Current trends in salivary gland tight junctions.

    PubMed

    Baker, Olga J

    2016-01-01

    Tight junctions form a continuous intercellular barrier between epithelial cells that is required to separate tissue spaces and regulate selective movement of solutes across the epithelium. They are composed of strands containing integral membrane proteins (e.g., claudins, occludin and tricellulin, junctional adhesion molecules and the coxsackie adenovirus receptor). These proteins are anchored to the cytoskeleton via scaffolding proteins such as ZO-1 and ZO-2. In salivary glands, tight junctions are involved in polarized saliva secretion and barrier maintenance between the extracellular environment and the glandular lumen. This review seeks to provide an overview of what is currently known, as well as the major questions and future research directions, regarding tight junction expression, organization and function within salivary glands. PMID:27583188

  11. Dynamic gap junctional communication: a delimiting model for tissue responses.

    PubMed Central

    Christ, G J; Brink, P R; Ramanan, S V

    1994-01-01

    Gap junctions are aqueous intercellular channels formed by a diverse class of membrane-spanning proteins, known as connexins. These aqueous pores provide partial cytoplasmic continuity between cells in most tissues, and are freely permeable to a host of physiologically relevant second messenger molecules/ionic species (e.g., Ca2+, IP3, cAMP, cGMP). Despite the fact that these second messenger molecules/ionic species have been shown to alter junctional patency, there is no clear basis for understanding how dynamic and transient changes in the intracellular concentration of second messenger molecules might modulate the extent of intercellular communication among coupled cells. Thus, we have modified the tissue monolayer model of Ramanan and Brink (1990) to account for both the up-regulatory and down-regulatory effects on junctions by second messenger molecules that diffuse through gap junctions. We have chosen the vascular wall as our morphological correlate because of its anisotropy and large investment of gap junctions. The model allows us to illustrate the putative behavior of gap junctions under a variety of physiologically relevant conditions. The modeling studies demonstrated that transient alterations in intracellular second messenger concentrations are capable of producing 50-125% changes in the number of cells recruited into a functional syncytial unit, after activation of a single cell. Moreover, the model conditions required to demonstrate such physiologically relevant changes in intercellular diffusion among coupled cells are commonly observed in intact tissues and cultured cells. Images FIGURE 2 PMID:7811948

  12. Spatial organization of the extracellular matrix regulates cell–cell junction positioning

    PubMed Central

    Tseng, Qingzong; Duchemin-Pelletier, Eve; Deshiere, Alexandre; Balland, Martial; Guillou, Hervé; Filhol, Odile; Théry, Manuel

    2012-01-01

    The organization of cells into epithelium depends on cell interaction with both the extracellular matrix (ECM) and adjacent cells. The role of cell–cell adhesion in the regulation of epithelial topology is well-described. ECM is better known to promote cell migration and provide a structural scaffold for cell anchoring, but its contribution to multicellular morphogenesis is less well-understood. We developed a minimal model system to investigate how ECM affects the spatial organization of intercellular junctions. Fibronectin micropatterns were used to constrain the location of cell–ECM adhesion. We found that ECM affects the degree of stability of intercellular junction positioning and the magnitude of intra- and intercellular forces. Intercellular junctions were permanently displaced, and experienced large perpendicular tensional forces as long as they were positioned close to ECM. They remained stable solely in regions deprived of ECM, where they were submitted to lower tensional forces. The heterogeneity of the spatial organization of ECM induced anisotropic distribution of mechanical constraints in cells, which seemed to adapt their position to minimize both intra- and intercellular forces. These results uncover a morphogenetic role for ECM in the mechanical regulation of cells and intercellular junction positioning. PMID:22307605

  13. Kinetics and mechanism of intercellular ice propagation in a micropatterned tissue construct.

    PubMed Central

    Irimia, Daniel; Karlsson, Jens O M

    2002-01-01

    Understanding the effects of cell-cell interaction on intracellular ice formation (IIF) is required to design optimized protocols for cryopreservation of tissue. To determine the effects of cell-cell interactions during tissue freezing, without confounding effects from uncontrolled factors (such as time in culture, cell geometry, and cell-substrate interactions), HepG2 cells were cultured in pairs on glass coverslips micropatterned with polyethylene glycol disilane, such that each cell interacted with exactly one adjacent cell. Assuming the cell pair to be a finite state system, being either in an unfrozen state (no ice in either cell), a singlet state (IIF in one cell only), or a doublet state (IIF in both cells), the kinetics of state transitions were theoretically modeled and cryomicroscopically measured. The rate of intercellular ice propagation, estimated from the measured singlet state probability, increased in the first 24 h of culture and remained steady thereafter. In cell pairs cultured for 24 h and treated with the gap junction blocker 18beta-glycyrrhetinic acid before freezing, the intercellular ice propagation rate was lower than in untreated controls (p < 0.001), but significantly greater than zero (p < 0.0001). These results suggest that gap junctions mediate some, but not all, mechanisms of ice propagation in tissue. PMID:11916845

  14. Kinetics and mechanism of intercellular ice propagation in a micropatterned tissue construct.

    PubMed

    Irimia, Daniel; Karlsson, Jens O M

    2002-04-01

    Understanding the effects of cell-cell interaction on intracellular ice formation (IIF) is required to design optimized protocols for cryopreservation of tissue. To determine the effects of cell-cell interactions during tissue freezing, without confounding effects from uncontrolled factors (such as time in culture, cell geometry, and cell-substrate interactions), HepG2 cells were cultured in pairs on glass coverslips micropatterned with polyethylene glycol disilane, such that each cell interacted with exactly one adjacent cell. Assuming the cell pair to be a finite state system, being either in an unfrozen state (no ice in either cell), a singlet state (IIF in one cell only), or a doublet state (IIF in both cells), the kinetics of state transitions were theoretically modeled and cryomicroscopically measured. The rate of intercellular ice propagation, estimated from the measured singlet state probability, increased in the first 24 h of culture and remained steady thereafter. In cell pairs cultured for 24 h and treated with the gap junction blocker 18beta-glycyrrhetinic acid before freezing, the intercellular ice propagation rate was lower than in untreated controls (p < 0.001), but significantly greater than zero (p < 0.0001). These results suggest that gap junctions mediate some, but not all, mechanisms of ice propagation in tissue. PMID:11916845

  15. Josephson junction

    DOEpatents

    Wendt, Joel R.; Plut, Thomas A.; Martens, Jon S.

    1995-01-01

    A novel method for fabricating nanometer geometry electronic devices is described. Such Josephson junctions can be accurately and reproducibly manufactured employing photolithographic and direct write electron beam lithography techniques in combination with aqueous etchants. In particular, a method is described for manufacturing planar Josephson junctions from high temperature superconducting material.

  16. Josephson junction

    DOEpatents

    Wendt, J.R.; Plut, T.A.; Martens, J.S.

    1995-05-02

    A novel method for fabricating nanometer geometry electronic devices is described. Such Josephson junctions can be accurately and reproducibly manufactured employing photolithographic and direct write electron beam lithography techniques in combination with aqueous etchants. In particular, a method is described for manufacturing planar Josephson junctions from high temperature superconducting material. 10 figs.

  17. Bimetallic junctions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arcella, F. G.; Lessmann, G. G.; Lindberg, R. A. (Inventor)

    1977-01-01

    The formation of voids through interdiffusion in bimetallic welded structures exposed to high operating temperatures is inhibited by utilizing an alloy of the parent materials in the junction of the parent materials or by preannealing the junction at an ultrahigh temperature. These methods are also used to reduce the concentration gradient of a hardening agent.

  18. Intra- and Intercellular Communication Systems in Ciliates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Görtz, H.-D.; Kuhlmann, H.-W.; Möllenbeck, M.; Tiedtke, A.; Kusch, J.; Schmidt, H. J.; Miyake, A.

    Intracellular signaling and cell-cell interactions are basic features of living organisms. Ciliated protozoa show complex mechanisms of intracellular signaling, as is demonstrated for the phagosomal pathway. Although unicellular, ciliates also communicate with other cells, for example, with invading or symbiotic micro-organisms, some of which are dwelling in the nuclei. In predator-prey interactions chemical signals (kairomones) released by certain predators induce defensive morphological or behavioral changes in the prey ciliates. In intercellular communication sensu strictu ciliate cells communicate with each other, for example, in sexual propagation. A variety of sexual signals have been found to function in preconjugant interaction. Many phenomena of cellular communication in ciliates appear to be similar to those found in multicellular organisms.

  19. Development of schizogenous intercellular spaces in plants

    PubMed Central

    Ishizaki, Kimitsune

    2015-01-01

    Gas exchange is essential for multicellular organisms. In contrast to the circulatory systems of animals, land plants have tissues with intercellular spaces (ICSs), called aerenchyma, that are critical for efficient gas exchange. Plants form ICSs by two different mechanisms: schizogeny, where localized cell separation creates spaces; and lysogeny, where cells die to create ICSs. In schizogenous ICS formation, specific molecular mechanisms regulate the sites of cell separation and coordinate extensive reorganization of cell walls. Emerging evidence suggests the involvement of extracellular signaling, mediated by peptide ligands and leucine-rich repeat receptor-like kinases, in the regulation of cell wall remodeling during cell separation. Recent work on the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha has demonstrated a critical role for a plasma membrane-associated plant U-box E3 ubiquitin ligase in ICS formation. In this review, I discuss the mechanism of schizogenous ICS formation, focusing on the potential role of extracellular signaling in the regulation of cell separation. PMID:26191071

  20. Study of Gap Junctions in Human Embryonic Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Pébay, Alice; Wong, Raymond C B

    2016-01-01

    Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) has been described in different cell types including stem cells and has been involved in different biological events. GJIC is required for mouse embryonic stem cell maintenance and proliferation and various studies suggest that functional GJIC is a common characteristic of human embryonic stem cells (hESC) maintained in different culture conditions. This chapter introduces methods to study gap junctions in hESC, from expression of gap junction proteins to functional study of GJIC in hESC proliferation, apoptosis, colony growth, and pluripotency. PMID:24859928

  1. Target-Catalyzed DNA Four-Way Junctions for CRET Imaging of MicroRNA, Concatenated Logic Operations, and Self-Assembly of DNA Nanohydrogels for Targeted Drug Delivery.

    PubMed

    Bi, Sai; Xiu, Bao; Ye, Jiayan; Dong, Ying

    2015-10-21

    Here we report a target-catalyzed DNA four-way junction (DNA-4WJ) on the basis of toehold-mediated DNA strand displacement reaction (TM-SDR), which is readily applied in enzyme-free amplified chemiluminescence resonance energy transfer (CRET) imaging of microRNA. In this system, the introduction of target microRNA-let-7a (miR-let-7a) activates a cascade of assembly steps with four DNA hairpins, followed by a disassembly step in which the target microRNA is displaced and released from DNA-4WJ to catalyze the self-assembly of additional branched junctions. As a result, G-quadruplex subunit sequences and fluorophore fluorescein amidite (FAM) are encoded in DNA-4WJ in a close proximity, stimulating a CRET process in the presence of hemin/K(+) to form horseradish peroxidase (HRP)-mimicking DNAzyme that catalyzes the generation of luminol/H2O2 chemiluminescence (CL), which further transfers to FAM. The background signal is easily reduced using magnetic graphene oxide (MGO) to remove unreacted species through magnetic separation, which makes a great contribution to improve the detection sensitivity and achieves a detection limit as low as 6.9 fM microRNA-let-7a (miR-let-7a). In addition, four-input concatenated logic circuits with an automatic reset function have been successfully constructed relying on the architecture of the proposed DNA-4WJ. More importantly, DNA nanohydrogels are self-assembled using DNA-4WJs as building units after centrifugation, which are driven by liquid crystallization and dense packaging of building units. Moreover, the DNA nanohydrogels are readily functionalized by incorporating with aptamers, bioimaging agents, and drug loading sites, which thus are served as efficient nanocarriers for targeted drug delivery and cancer therapy with high loading capacity and excellent biocompatibility. PMID:26420675

  2. Drosophila wing imaginal discs respond to mechanical injury via slow InsP3R-mediated intercellular calcium waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Restrepo, Simon; Basler, Konrad

    2016-08-01

    Calcium signalling is a highly versatile cellular communication system that modulates basic functions such as cell contractility, essential steps of animal development such as fertilization and higher-order processes such as memory. We probed the function of calcium signalling in Drosophila wing imaginal discs through a combination of ex vivo and in vivo imaging and genetic analysis. Here we discover that wing discs display slow, long-range intercellular calcium waves (ICWs) when mechanically stressed in vivo or cultured ex vivo. These slow imaginal disc intercellular calcium waves (SIDICs) are mediated by the inositol-3-phosphate receptor, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) calcium pump SERCA and the key gap junction component Inx2. The knockdown of genes required for SIDIC formation and propagation negatively affects wing disc recovery after mechanical injury. Our results reveal a role for ICWs in wing disc homoeostasis and highlight the utility of the wing disc as a model for calcium signalling studies.

  3. Drosophila wing imaginal discs respond to mechanical injury via slow InsP3R-mediated intercellular calcium waves.

    PubMed

    Restrepo, Simon; Basler, Konrad

    2016-01-01

    Calcium signalling is a highly versatile cellular communication system that modulates basic functions such as cell contractility, essential steps of animal development such as fertilization and higher-order processes such as memory. We probed the function of calcium signalling in Drosophila wing imaginal discs through a combination of ex vivo and in vivo imaging and genetic analysis. Here we discover that wing discs display slow, long-range intercellular calcium waves (ICWs) when mechanically stressed in vivo or cultured ex vivo. These slow imaginal disc intercellular calcium waves (SIDICs) are mediated by the inositol-3-phosphate receptor, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) calcium pump SERCA and the key gap junction component Inx2. The knockdown of genes required for SIDIC formation and propagation negatively affects wing disc recovery after mechanical injury. Our results reveal a role for ICWs in wing disc homoeostasis and highlight the utility of the wing disc as a model for calcium signalling studies. PMID:27503836

  4. Drosophila wing imaginal discs respond to mechanical injury via slow InsP3R-mediated intercellular calcium waves

    PubMed Central

    Restrepo, Simon; Basler, Konrad

    2016-01-01

    Calcium signalling is a highly versatile cellular communication system that modulates basic functions such as cell contractility, essential steps of animal development such as fertilization and higher-order processes such as memory. We probed the function of calcium signalling in Drosophila wing imaginal discs through a combination of ex vivo and in vivo imaging and genetic analysis. Here we discover that wing discs display slow, long-range intercellular calcium waves (ICWs) when mechanically stressed in vivo or cultured ex vivo. These slow imaginal disc intercellular calcium waves (SIDICs) are mediated by the inositol-3-phosphate receptor, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) calcium pump SERCA and the key gap junction component Inx2. The knockdown of genes required for SIDIC formation and propagation negatively affects wing disc recovery after mechanical injury. Our results reveal a role for ICWs in wing disc homoeostasis and highlight the utility of the wing disc as a model for calcium signalling studies. PMID:27503836

  5. Computing Scattering Characteristics Of Waveguide Junctions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoppe, Daniel J.; Manshadi, Farzin

    1994-01-01

    Rectangular WaveGuide Junction SCATtering RWGSCAT computer program solves scattering properties of waveguide device. Modeled as assembly of rectangular waveguides of different cross sections. RWGSCAT written in FORTRAN 77.

  6. Extracellular vesicles as emerging intercellular communicasomes

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Yae Jin; Kim, Oh Youn; Gho, Yong Song

    2014-01-01

    All living cells release extracellular vesicles having pleiotropic functions in intercellular communication. Mammalian extracellular vesicles, also known as exosomes and microvesicles, are spherical bilayered proteolipids composed of various bioactive molecules, including RNAs, DNAs, proteins, and lipids. Extracellular vesicles directly and indirectly control a diverse range of biological processes by transferring membrane proteins, signaling molecules, mRNAs, and miRNAs, and activating receptors of recipient cells. The active interaction of extracellular vesicles with other cells regulates various physiological and pathological conditions, including cancer, infectious diseases, and neurodegenerative disorders. Recent developments in high-throughput proteomics, transcriptomics, and lipidomics tools have provided ample data on the common and specific components of various types of extracellular vesicles. These studies may contribute to the understanding of the molecular mechanism involved in vesicular cargo sorting and the biogenesis of extracellular vesicles, and, further, to the identification of disease-specific biomarkers. This review focuses on the components, functions, and therapeutic and diagnostic potential of extracellular vesicles under various pathophysiological conditions. [BMB Reports 2014; 47(10): 531-539] PMID:25104400

  7. Intercellular communication lessons in heart failure.

    PubMed

    Bang, Claudia; Antoniades, Charalambos; Antonopoulos, Alexios S; Eriksson, Ulf; Franssen, Constantijn; Hamdani, Nazha; Lehmann, Lorenz; Moessinger, Christine; Mongillo, Marco; Muhl, Lars; Speer, Thimoteus; Thum, Thomas

    2015-11-01

    Cell-cell or inter-organ communication allows the exchange of information and messages, which is essential for the coordination of cell/organ functions and the maintenance of homeostasis. It has become evident that dynamic interactions of different cell types play a major role in the heart, in particular during the progression of heart failure, a leading cause of mortality worldwide. Heart failure is associated with compensatory structural and functional changes mostly in cardiomyocytes and cardiac fibroblasts, which finally lead to cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and fibrosis. Intercellular communication within the heart is mediated mostly via direct cell-cell interaction or the release of paracrine signalling mediators such as cytokines and chemokines. However, recent studies have focused on the exchange of genetic information via the packaging into vesicles as well as the crosstalk of lipids and other paracrine molecules within the heart and distant organs, such as kidney and adipose tissue, which might all contribute to the pathogenesis of heart failure. In this review, we discuss emerging communication networks and respective underlying mechanisms which could be involved in cardiovascular disease conditions and further emphasize promising therapeutic targets for drug development. PMID:26398116

  8. A stochastic two-dimensional model of intercellular Ca2+ wave spread in glia.

    PubMed

    Iacobas, Dumitru A; Suadicani, Sylvia O; Spray, David C; Scemes, Eliana

    2006-01-01

    We describe a two-dimensional stochastic model of intercellular Ca(2+) wave (ICW) spread in glia that includes contributions of external stimuli, ionotropic and metabotropic P2 receptors, exo- and ecto-nucleotidases, second messengers, and gap junctions. In this model, an initial stimulus evokes ATP and UTP release from a single cell. Agonists diffuse and are degraded both in bulk solution and at cell surfaces. Ca(2+) elevation in individual cells is determined by bound agonist concentrations s and by number and features of P2 receptors summed with that generated by IP(3) diffusing through gap junction channels. Variability of ICWs is provided by randomly distributing a predetermined density of cells in a rectangular grid and by randomly selecting within intervals values characterizing the extracellular compartment, individual cells, and interconnections with neighboring cells. Variability intervals were obtained from experiments on astrocytoma cells transfected to express individual P2 receptors and/or the gap junction protein connexin43. The simulation program (available as Supplementary Material) permits individual alteration of ICW components, allowing comparison of simulations with data from cells expressing connexin43 and/or various P2 receptor subtypes. Such modeling is expected to be useful for testing phenomenological hypotheses and in understanding consequences of alteration of system components under experimental or pathological conditions. PMID:16214872

  9. Molecular mechanisms of intercellular communication: transmembrane signaling

    SciTech Connect

    Bitensky, M.W.; George, J.S.; Siegel, H.N.; McGregor, D.M.

    1982-01-01

    This short discussion of transmembrane signaling depicts a particular class of signaling devices whose functional characteristics may well be representative of broader classes of membrane switches. These multicomponent aggregates are characterized by tight organization of interacting components which function by conformational interactions to provide sensitive, amplified, rapid, and modulated responses. It is clear that the essential role of such switches in cell-cell interactions necessitated their appearance early in the history of the development of multicellular organisms. It also seems clear that once such devices made their appearance, the conformationally interactive moieties were firmly locked into a regulatory relationship. Since modification of interacting components could perturb or interfere with the functional integrity of the whole switch, genetic drift was only permitted at the input and outflow extremes. However, the GTP binding moiety and its interacting protein domains on contiguous portions of the receptor and readout components were highly conserved. The observed stringent evolutionary conservation of the molecular features of these membrane switches thus applies primarily to the central (GTP binding) elements. An extraordinary degree of variation was permitted within the domains of signal recognition and enzymatic output. Thus, time and evolution have adapted the central logic of the regulatory algorithm to serve a great variety of cellular purposes and to recognize a great variety of chemical and physical signals. This is exemplified by the richness of the hormonal and cellular dialogues found in primates such as man. Here the wealth of intercellular communiation can support the composition and performance of symphonies and the study of cellular immunology.

  10. "Intercellular bridges" in a case of well differentiated squamous carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Michaela; Mikita, Geoffrey; Hoda, Rana S

    2016-02-01

    Intercellular bridges may aide in definitive identification of malignant cell origin, especially in squamous cell carcinoma. They are difficult to identify in routine cytologic specimens and are especially rare in smear preparations. Herein, we present images of intercellular bridges from a case of well differentiated squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus in a cytologic specimen obtained from FNA of a paraesophageal lymph node. PMID:26681399

  11. Intercellular transfer along the trichomes of the invasive terminal heterocyst forming cyanobacterium Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii CS-505.

    PubMed

    Plominsky, Álvaro M; Delherbe, Nathalie; Mandakovic, Dinka; Riquelme, Brenda; González, Karen; Bergman, Birgitta; Mariscal, Vicente; Vásquez, Mónica

    2015-03-01

    Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii CS-505 is an invasive freshwater filamentous cyanobacterium that when grown diazotrophically may develop trichomes of up to 100 vegetative cells while differentiating only two end heterocysts, the sole sites for their N2-fixation process. We examined the diazotrophic growth and intercellular transfer mechanisms in C. raciborskii CS-505. Subjecting cultures to a combined-nitrogen-free medium to elicit N2 fixation, the trichome length remained unaffected while growth rates decreased. The structures and proteins for intercellular communication showed that while a continuous periplasmic space was apparent along the trichomes, the putative septal junction sepJ gene is divided into two open reading frames and lacks several transmembrane domains unlike the situation in Anabaena, differentiating a 5-fold higher frequency of heterocysts. FRAP analyses also showed that the dyes calcein and 5-CFDA were taken up by heterocysts and vegetative cells, and that the transfer from heterocysts and 'terminal' vegetative cells showed considerably higher transfer rates than that from vegetative cells located in the middle of the trichomes. The data suggest that C. raciborskii CS-505 compensates its low-frequency heterocyst phenotype by a highly efficient transfer of the fixed nitrogen towards cells in distal parts of the trichomes (growing rapidly) while cells in central parts suffers (slow growth). PMID:25757729

  12. Intercellular calcium waves are associated with the propagation of vasomotion along arterial strips.

    PubMed

    Seppey, Dominique; Sauser, Roger; Koenigsberger, Michèle; Bény, Jean-Louis; Meister, Jean-Jacques

    2010-02-01

    Vasomotion consists of cyclic arterial diameter variations induced by synchronous contractions and relaxations of smooth muscle cells. However, the arteries do not contract simultaneously on macroscopic distances, and a propagation of the contraction can be observed. In the present study, our aim was to investigate this propagation. We stimulated endothelium-denuded rat mesenteric arterial strips with phenylephrine (PE) to obtain vasomotion and observed that the contraction waves are linked to intercellular calcium waves. A velocity of approximately 100 microm/s was measured for the two kinds of waves. To investigate the calcium wave propagation mechanisms, we used a method allowing a PE stimulation of a small area of the strip. No calcium propagation could be induced by this local stimulation when the strip was in its resting state. However, if a low PE concentration was added on the whole strip, local PE stimulations induced calcium waves, spreading over finite distances. The calcium wave velocity induced by local stimulation was identical to the velocity observed during vasomotion. This suggests that the propagation mechanisms are similar in the two cases. Using inhibitors of gap junctions and of voltage-operated calcium channels, we showed that the locally induced calcium propagation likely depends on the propagation of the smooth muscle cell depolarization. Finally, we proposed a model of the propagation mechanisms underlying these intercellular calcium waves. PMID:19966061

  13. Cell Cycle Checkpoint Proteins p21 and Hus1 Regulating Intercellular Signaling Induced By Alpha Particle Irradiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Lijun; Zhao, Ye; Wang, Jun; Hang, Haiying

    In recent years, the attentions for radiation induced bystander effects (RIBE) have been paid on the intercellular signaling events connecting the irradiated and non-irradiated cells. p21 is a member of the Cip/Kip family and plays essential roles in cell cycle progression arrest after cellular irradiation. DNA damage checkpoint protein Hus1 is a member of the Rad9-Rad1-Hus1 complex and functions as scaffold at the damage sites to facilitate the activation of downstream effectors. Using the medium trasfer method and the cells of MEF, MEF (p21-/-), MEF (p21-/-Hus1-/-) as either medium donor or receptor cells, it was found that with 5cGy alpha particle irradiation, the bystander cells showed a significant induction of -H2AX for normal MEFs (p¡0.05). However, the absence of p21 resulted in deficiency in inducing bystander effects. Further results indicated p21 affected the intercellular DNA damage signaling mainly through disrupting the production or release of the damage signals from irradiated cells. When Hus1 and p21 were both knocked out, an obvious induction of -H2AX recurred in bystander cells and the induction of -H2AX was GJIC (gap junction-mediated intercellular communication) dependent, indicating the interrelationship between p21 and Hus1 regulated the production and relay of DNA damage signals from irradiated cells to non-irradiated bystander cells.

  14. Minireview: Steroid/Nuclear Receptor-Regulated Dynamics of Occluding and Anchoring Junctions

    PubMed Central

    Kapadia, Bhumika J.

    2014-01-01

    A diverse set of physiological signals control intercellular interactions by regulating the structure and function of occluding junctions (tight junctions) and anchoring junctions (adherens junctions and desmosomes). These plasma membrane junctions are comprised of multiprotein complexes of transmembrane and cytoplasmic peripheral plasma membrane proteins. Evidence from many hormone-responsive tissues has shown that expression, modification, molecular interactions, stability, and localization of junctional complex-associated proteins can be targeted by nuclear hormone receptors and their ligands through transcriptional and nontranscriptional mechanisms. The focus of this minireview is to discuss molecular, cellular, and physiological studies that directly link nuclear receptor- and ligand-triggered signaling pathways to the regulation of occluding and anchoring junction dynamics. PMID:25203673

  15. Homotypic gap junctional communication associated with metastasis increases suppression increases with PKA kinase activity and is unaffected by P13K inhibition

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Loss of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) between cancer cells is a common characteristic of malignant transformation. This communication is mediated by connexin proteins that make up the functional units of gap junctions. Connexins are highly regulated at the protein level and phosp...

  16. Multisite electrophysiological recordings by self-assembled loose-patch-like junctions between cultured hippocampal neurons and mushroom-shaped microelectrodes.

    PubMed

    Shmoel, Nava; Rabieh, Noha; Ojovan, Silviya M; Erez, Hadas; Maydan, Eilon; Spira, Micha E

    2016-01-01

    Substrate integrated planar microelectrode arrays is the "gold standard" method for millisecond-resolution, long-term, large-scale, cell-noninvasive electrophysiological recordings from mammalian neuronal networks. Nevertheless, these devices suffer from drawbacks that are solved by spike-detecting, spike-sorting and signal-averaging techniques which rely on estimated parameters that require user supervision to correct errors, merge clusters and remove outliers. Here we show that primary rat hippocampal neurons grown on micrometer sized gold mushroom-shaped microelectrodes (gMμE) functionalized simply by poly-ethylene-imine/laminin undergo self-assembly processes to form loose patch-like hybrid structures. More than 90% of the hybrids formed in this way record monophasic positive action potentials (APs). Of these, 34.5% record APs with amplitudes above 300 μV and up to 5,085 μV. This self-assembled neuron-gMμE configuration improves the recording quality as compared to planar MEA. This study characterizes and analyzes the electrophysiological signaling repertoire generated by the neurons-gMμE configuration, and discusses prospects to further improve the technology. PMID:27256971

  17. Multisite electrophysiological recordings by self-assembled loose-patch-like junctions between cultured hippocampal neurons and mushroom-shaped microelectrodes

    PubMed Central

    Shmoel, Nava; Rabieh, Noha; Ojovan, Silviya M.; Erez, Hadas; Maydan, Eilon; Spira, Micha E.

    2016-01-01

    Substrate integrated planar microelectrode arrays is the “gold standard” method for millisecond-resolution, long-term, large-scale, cell-noninvasive electrophysiological recordings from mammalian neuronal networks. Nevertheless, these devices suffer from drawbacks that are solved by spike-detecting, spike-sorting and signal-averaging techniques which rely on estimated parameters that require user supervision to correct errors, merge clusters and remove outliers. Here we show that primary rat hippocampal neurons grown on micrometer sized gold mushroom-shaped microelectrodes (gMμE) functionalized simply by poly-ethylene-imine/laminin undergo self-assembly processes to form loose patch-like hybrid structures. More than 90% of the hybrids formed in this way record monophasic positive action potentials (APs). Of these, 34.5% record APs with amplitudes above 300 μV and up to 5,085 μV. This self-assembled neuron-gMμE configuration improves the recording quality as compared to planar MEA. This study characterizes and analyzes the electrophysiological signaling repertoire generated by the neurons-gMμE configuration, and discusses prospects to further improve the technology. PMID:27256971

  18. Regulation of Endothelial Adherens Junctions by Tyrosine Phosphorylation

    PubMed Central

    Adam, Alejandro Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Endothelial cells form a semipermeable, regulated barrier that limits the passage of fluid, small molecules, and leukocytes between the bloodstream and the surrounding tissues. The adherens junction, a major mechanism of intercellular adhesion, is comprised of transmembrane cadherins forming homotypic interactions between adjacent cells and associated cytoplasmic catenins linking the cadherins to the cytoskeleton. Inflammatory conditions promote the disassembly of the adherens junction and a loss of intercellular adhesion, creating openings or gaps in the endothelium through which small molecules diffuse and leukocytes transmigrate. Tyrosine kinase signaling has emerged as a central regulator of the inflammatory response, partly through direct phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of the adherens junction components. This review discusses the findings that support and those that argue against a direct effect of cadherin and catenin phosphorylation in the disassembly of the adherens junction. Recent findings indicate a complex interaction between kinases, phosphatases, and the adherens junction components that allow a fine regulation of the endothelial permeability to small molecules, leukocyte migration, and barrier resealing. PMID:26556953

  19. Hold on tightly, let go lightly: myosin functions at adherens junctions

    PubMed Central

    Sandquist, Joshua C.; Bement, William M.

    2016-01-01

    Adherens junctions, the sites of cadherin-dependent cell–cell adhesion, are also important for dynamic tension sensing, force transduction and signalling. Different myosin motors contribute to adherens junction assembly and versatility in distinct ways. PMID:20596044

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-01

    Pannexins (Panx) are proteins with a similar membrane topology to connexins, the integral membrane protein of gap junctions. Panx1 channels are generally of major importance in a large number of system and cellular processes and their function has been thoroughly characterized. In contrast, little is known about channel structure and subcellular distribution. We therefore determine the subcellular localization of Panx1 channels in cultured cells and aim at the identification of channel morphology in vitro. Using freeze-fracture replica immunolabeling on EYFP-Panx1-overexpressing HEK 293 cells, large particles were identified in plasma membranes, which were immunogold-labeled using either GFP or Panx1 antibodies. There was no labeling or particles in the nuclear membranes of these cells, pointing to plasma membrane localization of Panx1-EYFP channels. The assembly of particles was irregular, this being in contrast to the regular pattern of gap junctions. The fact that no counterparts were identified on apposing cells, which would have been indicative of intercellular signaling, supported the idea of Panx1 channels within one membrane. Control cells (transfected with EYFP only, non-transfected) were devoid of both particles and immunogold labeling. Altogether, this study provides the first demonstration of Panx1 channel morphology and assembly in intact cells. The identification of Panx1 channels as large particles within the plasma membrane provides the knowledge required to enable recognition of Panx1 channels in tissues in future studies. Thus, these results open up new avenues for the detailed analysis of the subcellular localization of Panx1 and of its nearest neighbors such as purinergic receptors in vivo. PMID:26386583

  1. Remodelling of cellular excitation (reaction) and intercellular coupling (diffusion) by chronic atrial fibrillation represented by a reaction-diffusion system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Henggui; Garratt, Clifford J.; Kharche, Sanjay; Holden, Arun V.

    2009-06-01

    Human atrial tissue is an excitable system, in which myocytes are excitable elements, and cell-to-cell electrotonic interactions are via diffusive interactions of cell membrane potentials. We developed a family of excitable system models for human atrium at cellular, tissue and anatomical levels for both normal and chronic atrial fibrillation (AF) conditions. The effects of AF-induced remodelling of cell membrane ionic channels (reaction kinetics) and intercellular gap junctional coupling (diffusion) on atrial excitability, conduction of excitation waves and dynamics of re-entrant excitation waves are quantified. Both ionic channel and gap junctional coupling remodelling have rate dependent effects on atrial propagation. Membrane channel conductance remodelling allows the propagation of activity at higher rates than those sustained in normal tissue or in tissue with gap junctional remodelling alone. Membrane channel conductance remodelling is essential for the propagation of activity at rates higher than 300/min as seen in AF. Spatially heterogeneous gap junction coupling remodelling increased the risk of conduction block, an essential factor for the genesis of re-entry. In 2D and 3D anatomical models, the dynamical behaviours of re-entrant excitation waves are also altered by membrane channel modelling. This study provides insights to understand the pro-arrhythmic effects of AF-induced reaction and diffusion remodelling in atrial tissue.

  2. Switch in Gap Junction Protein Expression is Associated with Selective Changes in Junctional Permeability During Keratinocyte Differentiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brissette, Janice L.; Kumar, Nalin M.; Gilula, Norton B.; Hall, James E.; Dotto, G. Paolo

    1994-07-01

    Gap junctional communication provides a mechanism for regulating multicellular activities by allowing the exchange of small diffusible molecules between neighboring cells. The diversity of gap junction proteins may exist to form channels that have different permeability properties. We report here that induction of terminal differentiation in mouse primary keratinocytes by calcium results in a specific switch in gap junction protein expression. Expression of α_1 (connexin 43) and β_2 (connexin 26) gap junction proteins is down-modulated, whereas that of β_3 (connexin 31) and β_4 (connexin 31.1) proteins is induced. Although both proliferating and differentiating keratinocytes are electrically coupled, there are significant changes in the permeability properties of the junctions to small molecules. In parallel with the changes in gap junction protein expression during differentiation, the intercellular transfer of the small dyes neurobiotin, carboxyfluorescein, and Lucifer yellow is significantly reduced, whereas that of small metabolites, such as nucleotides and amino acids, proceeds unimpeded. Thus, a switch in gap junction protein expression in differentiating keratinocytes is accompanied by selective changes in junctional permeability that may play an important role in the coordinate control of the differentiation process.

  3. Effects of carbon nanotubes on intercellular communication and involvement of IL-1 genes.

    PubMed

    Arnoldussen, Yke Jildouw; Anmarkrud, Kristine Haugen; Skaug, Vidar; Apte, Ron N; Haugen, Aage; Zienolddiny, Shanbeh

    2016-06-01

    An increasing amount of products containing engineered nanoparticles is emerging. Among these particles are carbon nanotubes (CNTs) which are of interest for a wide range of industrial and biomedical applications. There have been raised concerns over the effects of CNTs on human health. Some types of CNTs are classified as group 2B carcinogens by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. CNTs may also induce pulmonary inflammatory and fibrotic effects. By utilizing CNTs of different lengths, we investigated the role of the proinflammatory cytokine, interleukin-1 (IL-1) on gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) by using IL-1 wild-type (IL1-WT) and IL-1 knock-out (IL1-KO) cells. GJIC decreased equally in both cell types after CNT exposure. Immunofluorescence staining showed Gja1 and Gjb2 in gap junctions and hemichannels for both cell types. Gjb1 and Gjb2 expression was low in IL1-KO cells, which was confirmed by protein analysis. Gja1 was upregulated with both CNTs, whereas Gjb1 was down-regulated by CNT-2 in IL1-WT cells. Connexin mRNA expression was regulated differently by the CNTs. CNT-1 affected Gja1 and Gjb2, whereas CNT-2 had an effect on Gjb1. CNTs negatively affect GJIC through gap junctions independently of the length of CNT and IL-1 status. Furthermore, connexin gene expression was affected by IL-1 at transcriptional and translational levels. As both CNTs used in this study are cytotoxic to the cells and reduce cell survival, we suggest that CNT-induced reduction in GJIC may be important for inhibiting transfer of cell survival signals between cells. PMID:27101311

  4. PECAM-1: regulator of endothelial junctional integrity.

    PubMed

    Privratsky, Jamie R; Newman, Peter J

    2014-03-01

    PECAM-1 (also known as CD31) is a cellular adhesion and signaling receptor comprising six extracellular immunoglobulin (Ig)-like homology domains, a short transmembrane domain and a 118 amino acid cytoplasmic domain that becomes serine and tyrosine phosphorylated upon cellular activation. PECAM-1 expression is restricted to blood and vascular cells. In circulating platelets and leukocytes, PECAM-1 functions largely as an inhibitory receptor that, via regulated sequential phosphorylation of its cytoplasmic domain, limits cellular activation responses. PECAM-1 is also highly expressed at endothelial cell intercellular junctions, where it functions as a mechanosensor, as a regulator of leukocyte trafficking and in the maintenance of endothelial cell junctional integrity. In this review, we will describe (1) the functional domains of PECAM-1 and how they contribute to its barrier-enhancing properties, (2) how the physical properties of PECAM-1 influence its subcellular localization and its ability to influence endothelial cell barrier function, (3) various stimuli that initiate PECAM-1 signaling and/or function at the endothelial junction and (4) cross-talk of PECAM-1 with other junctional molecules, which can influence endothelial cell function. PMID:24435645

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-01-01

    Gap junction-mediated intercellular communication influences a variety of cellular activities. In tendons, gap junctions modulate collagen production, are involved in strain-induced cell death, and are involved in the response to mechanical stimulation. The aim of the present study was to investigate gap junction-mediated intercellular communication in healthy human tendon-derived cells using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP). The FRAP is a noninvasive technique that allows quantitative measurement of gap junction function in living cells. It is based on diffusion-dependent redistribution of a gap junction-permeable fluorescent dye. Using FRAP, we showed that human tenocytes form functional gap junctions in monolayer and three-dimensional (3-D) collagen I culture. Fluorescently labeled tenocytes following photobleaching rapidly reacquired the fluorescent dye from neighboring cells, while HeLa cells, which do not communicate by gap junctions, remained bleached. Furthermore, both 18 β-glycyrrhetinic acid and carbenoxolone, standard inhibitors of gap junction activity, impaired fluorescence recovery in tendon cells. In both monolayer and 3-D cultures, intercellular communication in isolated cells was significantly decreased when compared with cells forming many cell-to-cell contacts. In this study, we used FRAP as a tool to quantify and experimentally manipulate the function of gap junctions in human tenocytes in both two-dimensional (2-D) and 3-D cultures.

  6. Minireview: Regulation of Gap Junction Dynamics by Nuclear Hormone Receptors and Their Ligands

    PubMed Central

    Kapadia, Bhumika J.

    2012-01-01

    Gap junctions are plasma membrane channels comprising connexin proteins that mediate intercellular permeability and communication. The presence, composition, and function of gap junctions can be regulated by diverse sets of physiological signals. Evidence from many hormone-responsive tissues has shown that connexin expression, modification, stability, and localization can be targeted by nuclear hormone receptors and their ligands through both transcriptional and nontranscriptional mechanisms. The focus of this review is to discuss molecular, cellular, and physiological studies that directly link receptor- and ligand-triggered signaling pathways to the regulation of gap junction dynamics. PMID:22935924

  7. Capturing intercellular sugar-mediated ligand-receptor recognitions via a simple yet highly biospecific interfacial system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhen; Deng, Si-Si; Zang, Yi; Gu, Zhen; He, Xiao-Peng; Chen, Guo-Rong; Chen, Kaixian; James, Tony D.; Li, Jia; Long, Yi-Tao

    2013-07-01

    Intercellular ligand-receptor recognitions are crucial natural interactions that initiate a number of biological and pathological events. We present here the simple construction of a unique class of biomimetic interfaces based on a graphene-mediated self-assembly of glycosyl anthraquinones to a screen-printed electrode for the detection of transmembrane glycoprotein receptors expressed on a hepatoma cell line. We show that an electroactive interface confined with densely clustered galactosyl ligands is able to ingeniously recognize the asialoglycoprotein receptors on live Hep-G2 cells employing simple electrochemical techniques. The only facility used is a personal laptop in connection with a cheap and portable electrochemical workstation.

  8. Inter-Cellular Forces Orchestrate Contact Inhibition of Locomotion

    PubMed Central

    Davis, John R.; Luchici, Andrei; Mosis, Fuad; Thackery, James; Salazar, Jesus A.; Mao, Yanlan; Dunn, Graham A.; Betz, Timo; Miodownik, Mark; Stramer, Brian M.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Contact inhibition of locomotion (CIL) is a multifaceted process that causes many cell types to repel each other upon collision. During development, this seemingly uncoordinated reaction is a critical driver of cellular dispersion within embryonic tissues. Here, we show that Drosophila hemocytes require a precisely orchestrated CIL response for their developmental dispersal. Hemocyte collision and subsequent repulsion involves a stereotyped sequence of kinematic stages that are modulated by global changes in cytoskeletal dynamics. Tracking actin retrograde flow within hemocytes in vivo reveals synchronous reorganization of colliding actin networks through engagement of an inter-cellular adhesion. This inter-cellular actin-clutch leads to a subsequent build-up in lamellar tension, triggering the development of a transient stress fiber, which orchestrates cellular repulsion. Our findings reveal that the physical coupling of the flowing actin networks during CIL acts as a mechanotransducer, allowing cells to haptically sense each other and coordinate their behaviors. PMID:25799385

  9. Intercellular Protein Transfer from Thymocytes to Thymic Epithelial Cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hong-Xia; Qiu, Yu-Rong; Zhong, Xiao-Ping

    2016-01-01

    Promiscuous expression of tissue restricted antigens (TRAs) in medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) is crucial for negative selection of self-reactive T cells to establish central tolerance. Intercellular transfer of self-peptide-MHC complexes from mTECs to thymic dendritic cells (DCs) allows DCs to acquire TRAs, which in turn contributes to negative selection and regulatory T cell generation. However, mTECs are unlikely to express all TRAs, such as immunoglobulins generated only in B cells after somatic recombination, hyper-mutation, or class-switches. We report here that both mTECs and cortical TECs can efficiently acquire not only cell surface but also intracellular proteins from thymocytes. This reveals a previously unappreciated intercellular sharing of molecules from thymocytes to TECs, which may broaden the TRA inventory in mTECs for establishing a full spectrum of central tolerance. PMID:27022746

  10. Intercellular bridges are essential for human parthenogenetic cell survival.

    PubMed

    Pennarossa, Georgia; Maffei, Sara; Tettamanti, Gianluca; Congiu, Terenzio; deEguileor, Magda; Gandolfi, Fulvio; Brevini, Tiziana A L

    2015-05-01

    Parthenogenetic cells, obtained from in vitro activated mammalian oocytes, display multipolar spindles, chromosome malsegregation and a high incidence of aneuploidy, probably due to the lack of paternal contribution. Despite this, parthenogenetic cells do not show high rates of apoptosis and are able to proliferate in a way comparable to their biparental counterpart. We hypothesize that a series of adaptive mechanisms are present in parthenogenetic cells, allowing a continuous proliferation and ordinate cell differentiation both in vitro and in vivo. Here we identify the presence of intercellular bridges that contribute to the establishment of a wide communication network among human parthenogenetic cells, providing a mutual exchange of missing products. Silencing of two molecules essential for intercellular bridge formation and maintenance demonstrates the key function played by these cytoplasmic passageways that ensure normal cell functions and survival, alleviating the unbalance in cellular component composition. PMID:25700933

  11. Intercellular Protein Transfer from Thymocytes to Thymic Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hong-Xia; Qiu, Yu-Rong; Zhong, Xiao-Ping

    2016-01-01

    Promiscuous expression of tissue restricted antigens (TRAs) in medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) is crucial for negative selection of self-reactive T cells to establish central tolerance. Intercellular transfer of self-peptide-MHC complexes from mTECs to thymic dendritic cells (DCs) allows DCs to acquire TRAs, which in turn contributes to negative selection and regulatory T cell generation. However, mTECs are unlikely to express all TRAs, such as immunoglobulins generated only in B cells after somatic recombination, hyper-mutation, or class-switches. We report here that both mTECs and cortical TECs can efficiently acquire not only cell surface but also intracellular proteins from thymocytes. This reveals a previously unappreciated intercellular sharing of molecules from thymocytes to TECs, which may broaden the TRA inventory in mTECs for establishing a full spectrum of central tolerance. PMID:27022746

  12. Dynamics of adherens junctions in epithelial establishment, maintenance, and remodeling

    PubMed Central

    Baum, Buzz

    2011-01-01

    The epithelial cadherin (E-cadherin)–catenin complex binds to cytoskeletal components and regulatory and signaling molecules to form a mature adherens junction (AJ). This dynamic structure physically connects neighboring epithelial cells, couples intercellular adhesive contacts to the cytoskeleton, and helps define each cell’s apical–basal axis. Together these activities coordinate the form, polarity, and function of all cells in an epithelium. Several molecules regulate AJ formation and integrity, including Rho family GTPases and Par polarity proteins. However, only recently, with the development of live-cell imaging, has the extent to which E-cadherin is actively turned over at junctions begun to be appreciated. This turnover contributes to junction formation and to the maintenance of epithelial integrity during tissue homeostasis and remodeling. PMID:21422226

  13. Transfection of C6 Glioma Cells with Connexin 43 cDNA: Analysis of Expression, Intercellular Coupling, and Cell Proliferation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, D.; Caveney, S.; Kidder, G. M.; Naus, C. C. G.

    1991-03-01

    C6 glioma cells express low levels of the gap junction protein connexin 43 and its mRNA and display very weak dye coupling. When implanted into the rat cerebrum, these cells quickly give rise to a large glioma. To investigate the role of gap junctions in the tumor characteristics of these cells, we have used Lipofectin-mediated transfection to introduce a full-length cDNA encoding connexin 43. Several transfected clones were obtained that exhibited various amounts of connexin 43 mRNA transcribed from the inserted cDNA. Immunocytochemical analysis revealed an increase in the amount of connexin 43 immunoreactivity in the transfected cells, being localized at areas of intercellular contact as well as in the cytoplasm. The level of dye coupling was also assessed and found to correlate with the amount of connexin 43 mRNA. When cell proliferation was followed over several days, cells expressing the transfected cDNA grew more slowly than nontransfected cells. These transfected cells will be useful in examining the role of gap junctions in tumorigenesis.

  14. Different roles of cadherins in the assembly and structural integrity of the desmosome complex

    SciTech Connect

    Lowndes, M; Rakshit, S; Shafraz, O; Borghi, N; Harmon, R M; Green, K J; Sivasankar, S; Nelson, W J

    2014-05-15

    Adhesion between cells is established by the formation of specialized intercellular junctional complexes, such as desmosomes. Desmosomes comprise two members of the cadherin superfamily of cell adhesion proteins, desmocollin (Dsc) and desmoglein (Dsg), but their combinatorial roles in desmosome assembly is not understood. To uncouple desmosome assembly from other cell-cell adhesion complexes, we used micro-patterned substrates of Dsc2aFc and/or Dsg2Fc and collagen IV; we show that Dsc2aFc, but not Dsg2Fc, was necessary and sufficient to recruit desmosome-specific desmoplakin into desmosome puncta and produce strong adhesive binding. Single Molecule Force Spectroscopy showed that monomeric Dsc2a, but not Dsg2, formed Ca2+-dependent homophilic bonds, and that Dsg2 formed Ca2+-independent heterophilic bonds with Dsc2a. A W2A mutation in Dsc2a inhibited Ca2+-dependent homophilic binding, similar to classical cadherins, and Dsc2aW2A, but not Dsg2W2A, was excluded from desmosomes in MDCK cells. These results indicate that Dsc2a, not Dsg2, is required for desmosome assembly via homophilic Ca2+- and W2/strand swap-dependent binding, and that Dsg2 may be involved later in regulating a switch to Ca2+-independent adhesion in mature desmosomes.

  15. The lateral intercellular space as osmotic coupling compartment in isotonic transport.

    PubMed

    Larsen, E H; Willumsen, N J; Møbjerg, N; Sørensen, J N

    2009-01-01

    Solute-coupled water transport and isotonic transport are basic functions of low- and high-resistance epithelia. These functions are studied with the epithelium bathed on the two sides with physiological saline of similar composition. Hence, at transepithelial equilibrium water enters the epithelial cells from both sides, and with the reflection coefficient of tight junction being larger than that of the interspace basement membrane, all of the water leaves the epithelium through the interspace basement membrane. The common design of transporting epithelia leads to the theory that an osmotic coupling of water absorption to ion flow is energized by lateral Na(+)/K(+) pumps. We show that the theory accounts quantitatively for steady- and time dependent states of solute-coupled fluid uptake by toad skin epithelium. Our experimental results exclude definitively three alternative theories of epithelial solute-water coupling: stoichiometric coupling at the molecular level by transport proteins like SGLT1, electro-osmosis and a 'junctional fluid transfer mechanism'. Convection-diffusion out of the lateral space constitutes the fundamental problem of isotonic transport by making the emerging fluid hypertonic relative to the fluid in the lateral intercellular space. In the Na(+) recirculation theory the 'surplus of solutes' is returned to the lateral space via the cells energized by the lateral Na(+)/K(+) pumps. We show that this theory accounts quantitatively for isotonic and hypotonic transport at transepithelial osmotic equilibrium as observed in toad skin epithelium in vitro. Our conclusions are further developed for discussing their application to solute-solvent coupling in other vertebrate epithelia such as small intestine, proximal tubule of glomerular kidney and gallbladder. Evidence is discussed that the Na(+) recirculation theory is not irreconcilable with the wide range of metabolic cost of Na(+) transport observed in fluid-transporting epithelia. PMID:18983444

  16. In vivo analysis of undocked connexin43 gap junction hemichannels in ovarian granulosa cells.

    PubMed

    Tong, Dan; Li, Tony Y; Naus, Kathryn E; Bai, Donglin; Kidder, Gerald M

    2007-11-15

    Connexin43 (Cx43, encoded by Gja1) is required for ovarian follicle development in the mouse. It is strongly expressed in granulosa cells, in which it forms intercellular gap junction channels that couple the cells metabolically. However, recent evidence indicates that undocked gap junction hemichannels can also have physiological roles such as mediating the release of small messenger molecules, including ATP. In this study, the presence of undocked Cx43 hemichannels in granulosa cells was revealed by dye uptake induced either by mechanical stimulation or by the reduction of extracellular divalent cations, both of which are known triggers for hemichannel opening. ATP release was also detected, and could be abolished by connexin-channel blockers. None of these putative hemichannel-mediated activities were detected in Cx43-deficient granulosa cells. Therefore, we hypothesized that hemichannels account for the essential role of Cx43 in folliculogenesis. To test this, a Cx43 mutant lacking the conserved cysteines on the extracellular loops (cys-less Cx43), reported to form hemichannels but not intercellular channels, was retrovirally expressed in Cx43-deficient granulosa cells. The infected cells were then combined with wild-type oocytes to make reaggregated ovaries, which were grafted into host kidneys. Although re-introduction of wild-type Cx43 rescued folliculogenesis, introduction of cys-less Cx43 did not. Therefore, although Cx43 gap junction hemichannels might play a role in ovarian folliculogenesis, their contribution does not supplant the need for intercellular gap junction channels. PMID:17971414

  17. Molecular mechanisms regulating formation, trafficking and processing of annular gap junctions.

    PubMed

    Falk, Matthias M; Bell, Cheryl L; Kells Andrews, Rachael M; Murray, Sandra A

    2016-01-01

    Internalization of gap junction plaques results in the formation of annular gap junction vesicles. The factors that regulate the coordinated internalization of the gap junction plaques to form annular gap junction vesicles, and the subsequent events involved in annular gap junction processing have only relatively recently been investigated in detail. However it is becoming clear that while annular gap junction vesicles have been demonstrated to be degraded by autophagosomal and endo-lysosomal pathways, they undergo a number of additional processing events. Here, we characterize the morphology of the annular gap junction vesicle and review the current knowledge of the processes involved in their formation, fission, fusion, and degradation. In addition, we address the possibility for connexin protein recycling back to the plasma membrane to contribute to gap junction formation and intercellular communication. Information on gap junction plaque removal from the plasma membrane and the subsequent processing of annular gap junction vesicles is critical to our understanding of cell-cell communication as it relates to events regulating development, cell homeostasis, unstable proliferation of cancer cells, wound healing, changes in the ischemic heart, and many other physiological and pathological cellular phenomena. PMID:27230503

  18. Structural basis for the selective permeability of channels made of communicating junction proteins

    PubMed Central

    Ek-Vitorin, Jose F.; Burt, Janis M.

    2012-01-01

    The open state(s) of gap junction channels is evident from their permeation by small ions in response to an applied intercellular (transjunctional/transchannel) voltage gradient. That an open channel allows variable amounts of current to transit from cell-to-cell in the face of a constant intercellular voltage difference indicates channel open/closing can be complete or partial. The physiological significance of such open state options is, arguably, the main concern of junctional regulation. Because gap junctions are permeable to many substances, it is sensible to inquire whether and how each open state influences the intercellular diffusion of molecules as valuable as, but less readily detected than current-carrying ions. Presumably, structural changes perceived as shifts in channel conductivity would significantly alter the transjunctional diffusion of molecules whose limiting diameter approximates the pore’s limiting diameter. Moreover, changes in junctional permeability to some molecules might occur without evident changes in conductivity, either at macroscopic or single channel level. Open gap junction channels allow the exchange of cytoplasmic permeants between contacting cells by simple diffusion. The identity of such permeants, and the functional circumstances and consequences of their junctional exchange presently constitute the most urgent (and demanding) themes of the field. Here, we consider the necessity for regulating this exchange, the possible mechanism(s) and structural elements likely involved in such regulation, and how regulatory phenomena could be perceived as changes in chemical vs. electrical coupling; an overall reflection on our collective knowledge of junctional communication is then applied to suggest new avenues of research. PMID:22342665

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2010-08-15

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

  20. A Transient Diffusion Model Yields Unitary Gap Junctional Permeabilities from Images of Cell-to-Cell Fluorescent Dye Transfer Between Xenopus Oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Nitsche, Johannes M.; Chang, Hou-Chien; Weber, Paul A.; Nicholson, Bruce J.

    2004-01-01

    As ubiquitous conduits for intercellular transport and communication, gap junctional pores have been the subject of numerous investigations aimed at elucidating the molecular mechanisms underlying permeability and selectivity. Dye transfer studies provide a broadly useful means of detecting coupling and assessing these properties. However, given evidence for selective permeability of gap junctions and some anomalous correlations between junctional electrical conductance and dye permeability by passive diffusion, the need exists to give such studies a more quantitative basis. This article develops a detailed diffusion model describing experiments (reported separately) involving transport of fluorescent dye from a “donor” region to an “acceptor” region within a pair of Xenopus oocytes coupled by gap junctions. Analysis of transport within a single oocyte is used to determine the diffusion and binding characteristics of the cellular cytoplasm. Subsequent double-cell calculations then yield the intercellular junction permeability, which is translated into a single-channel permeability using concomitant measurements of intercellular conductance, and known single-channel conductances of gap junctions made up of specific connexins, to count channels. The preceding strategy, combined with use of a graded size series of Alexa dyes, permits a determination of absolute values of gap junctional permeability as a function of dye size and connexin type. Interpretation of the results in terms of pore theory suggests significant levels of dye-pore affinity consistent with the expected order of magnitude of typical (e.g., van der Waals) intermolecular attractions. PMID:15041648

  1. Solitons in Josephson junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ustinov, A. V.

    1998-11-01

    Magnetic flux quanta in Josephson junctions, often called fluxons, in many cases behave as solitons. A review of recent experiments and modelling of fluxon dynamics in Josephson circuits is presented. Classic quasi-one-dimensional junctions, stacked junctions (Josephson superlattices), and discrete Josephson transmission lines (JTLs) are discussed. Applications of fluxon devices as high-frequency oscillators and digital circuits are also addressed.

  2. Long-range intercellular Ca2+ wave patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tabi, C. B.; Maïna, I.; Mohamadou, A.; Ekobena, H. P. F.; Kofané, T. C.

    2015-10-01

    Modulational instability is utilized to investigate intercellular Ca2+ wave propagation in an array of diffusively coupled cells. Cells are supposed to be connected via paracrine signaling, where long-range effects, due to the presence of extracellular messengers, are included. The multiple-scale expansion is used to show that the whole dynamics of Ca2+ waves, from the endoplasmic reticulum to the cytosol, can be reduced to a single differential-difference nonlinear equation whose solutions are assumed to be plane waves. Their linear stability analysis is studied, with emphasis on the impact of long-range coupling, via the range parameter s. It is shown that s, as well as the number of interacting cells, importantly modifies the features of modulational instability, as small values of s imply a strong coupling, and increasing its value rather reduces the problem to a first-neighbor one. Our theoretical findings are numerically tested, as the generic equations are fully integrated, leading to the emergence of nonlinear patterns of Ca2+ waves. Strong long-range coupling is pictured by extended trains of breather-like structures whose frequency decreases with increasing s. We also show numerically that the number of interacting cells plays on the spatio-temporal formation of Ca2+ patterns, whilst the quasi-perfect intercellular communication depends on the paracrine coupling parameter.

  3. Sticky Matrix: Adhesion Mechanism of the Staphylococcal Polysaccharide Intercellular Adhesin.

    PubMed

    Formosa-Dague, Cécile; Feuillie, Cécile; Beaussart, Audrey; Derclaye, Sylvie; Kucharíková, Soňa; Lasa, Iñigo; Van Dijck, Patrick; Dufrêne, Yves F

    2016-03-22

    The development of bacterial biofilms on surfaces leads to hospital-acquired infections that are difficult to fight. In Staphylococci, the cationic polysaccharide intercellular adhesin (PIA) forms an extracellular matrix that connects the cells together during biofilm formation, but the molecular forces involved are unknown. Here, we use advanced force nanoscopy techniques to unravel the mechanism of PIA-mediated adhesion in a clinically relevant methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strain. Nanoscale multiparametric imaging of the structure, adhesion, and elasticity of bacteria expressing PIA shows that the cells are surrounded by a soft and adhesive matrix of extracellular polymers. Cell surface softness and adhesion are dramatically reduced in mutant cells deficient for the synthesis of PIA or under unfavorable growth conditions. Single-cell force spectroscopy demonstrates that PIA promotes cell-cell adhesion via the multivalent electrostatic interaction with polyanionic teichoic acids on the S. aureus cell surface. This binding mechanism rationalizes, at the nanoscale, the well-known ability of PIA to strengthen intercellular adhesion in staphylococcal biofilms. Force nanoscopy offers promising prospects for understanding the fundamental forces in antibiotic-resistant biofilms and for designing anti-adhesion compounds targeting matrix polymers. PMID:26908275

  4. An electrostatic mechanism for Ca(2+)-mediated regulation of gap junction channels.

    PubMed

    Bennett, Brad C; Purdy, Michael D; Baker, Kent A; Acharya, Chayan; McIntire, William E; Stevens, Raymond C; Zhang, Qinghai; Harris, Andrew L; Abagyan, Ruben; Yeager, Mark

    2016-01-01

    Gap junction channels mediate intercellular signalling that is crucial in tissue development, homeostasis and pathologic states such as cardiac arrhythmias, cancer and trauma. To explore the mechanism by which Ca(2+) blocks intercellular communication during tissue injury, we determined the X-ray crystal structures of the human Cx26 gap junction channel with and without bound Ca(2+). The two structures were nearly identical, ruling out both a large-scale structural change and a local steric constriction of the pore. Ca(2+) coordination sites reside at the interfaces between adjacent subunits, near the entrance to the extracellular gap, where local, side chain conformational rearrangements enable Ca(2+)chelation. Computational analysis revealed that Ca(2+)-binding generates a positive electrostatic barrier that substantially inhibits permeation of cations such as K(+) into the pore. Our results provide structural evidence for a unique mechanism of channel regulation: ionic conduction block via an electrostatic barrier rather than steric occlusion of the channel pore. PMID:26753910

  5. An electrostatic mechanism for Ca2+-mediated regulation of gap junction channels

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, Brad C.; Purdy, Michael D.; Baker, Kent A.; Acharya, Chayan; McIntire, William E.; Stevens, Raymond C.; Zhang, Qinghai; Harris, Andrew L.; Abagyan, Ruben; Yeager, Mark

    2016-01-01

    Gap junction channels mediate intercellular signalling that is crucial in tissue development, homeostasis and pathologic states such as cardiac arrhythmias, cancer and trauma. To explore the mechanism by which Ca2+ blocks intercellular communication during tissue injury, we determined the X-ray crystal structures of the human Cx26 gap junction channel with and without bound Ca2+. The two structures were nearly identical, ruling out both a large-scale structural change and a local steric constriction of the pore. Ca2+ coordination sites reside at the interfaces between adjacent subunits, near the entrance to the extracellular gap, where local, side chain conformational rearrangements enable Ca2+chelation. Computational analysis revealed that Ca2+-binding generates a positive electrostatic barrier that substantially inhibits permeation of cations such as K+ into the pore. Our results provide structural evidence for a unique mechanism of channel regulation: ionic conduction block via an electrostatic barrier rather than steric occlusion of the channel pore. PMID:26753910

  6. Molecular series-tunneling junctions.

    PubMed

    Liao, Kung-Ching; Hsu, Liang-Yan; Bowers, Carleen M; Rabitz, Herschel; Whitesides, George M

    2015-05-13

    Charge transport through junctions consisting of insulating molecular units is a quantum phenomenon that cannot be described adequately by classical circuit laws. This paper explores tunneling current densities in self-assembled monolayer (SAM)-based junctions with the structure Ag(TS)/O2C-R1-R2-H//Ga2O3/EGaIn, where Ag(TS) is template-stripped silver and EGaIn is the eutectic alloy of gallium and indium; R1 and R2 refer to two classes of insulating molecular units-(CH2)n and (C6H4)m-that are connected in series and have different tunneling decay constants in the Simmons equation. These junctions can be analyzed as a form of series-tunneling junctions based on the observation that permuting the order of R1 and R2 in the junction does not alter the overall rate of charge transport. By using the Ag/O2C interface, this system decouples the highest occupied molecular orbital (HOMO, which is localized on the carboxylate group) from strong interactions with the R1 and R2 units. The differences in rates of tunneling are thus determined by the electronic structure of the groups R1 and R2; these differences are not influenced by the order of R1 and R2 in the SAM. In an electrical potential model that rationalizes this observation, R1 and R2 contribute independently to the height of the barrier. This model explicitly assumes that contributions to rates of tunneling from the Ag(TS)/O2C and H//Ga2O3 interfaces are constant across the series examined. The current density of these series-tunneling junctions can be described by J(V) = J0(V) exp(-β1d1 - β2d2), where J(V) is the current density (A/cm(2)) at applied voltage V and βi and di are the parameters describing the attenuation of the tunneling current through a rectangular tunneling barrier, with width d and a height related to the attenuation factor β. PMID:25871745

  7. Major loss of junctional coupling during mitosis in early mouse embryos

    PubMed Central

    1986-01-01

    Junctional coupling was assessed during the transition from the fourth to the fifth cell cycle of mouse embryogenesis by injection of the dye carboxyfluorescein and by measurement of electrical continuity between cells. Junctional coupling, which arises de novo in early 8-cell mouse embryos, subsequently becomes reduced towards the end of the cell cycle as the blastomeres enter into mitosis. Arrest of the cell cycle in metaphase by nocodazole, an inhibitor of tubulin polymerization, reveals that cell coupling becomes undetectable at mitosis. Junctional coupling then is resumed during interphase of the 16-cell stage. Nocodazole itself has no effect on junctional coupling in interphase cells, regardless of the extent of intercellular flattening, whereas taxol, a microtubule-stabilizing agent, does reduce the extent of coupling in interphase cells. PMID:2868015

  8. New Systems for Studying Intercellular Interactions in Bacterial Vaginosis.

    PubMed

    Herbst-Kralovetz, Melissa M; Pyles, Richard B; Ratner, Adam J; Sycuro, Laura K; Mitchell, Caroline

    2016-08-15

    Bacterial vaginosis (BV) affects almost a quarter of US women, making it a condition of major public health relevance. Key questions remain regarding the etiology of BV, mechanisms for its association with poor reproductive health outcomes, and reasons for high rates of treatment failure. New model systems are required to answer these remaining questions, elucidate the complex host-microbe and microbe-microbe interactions, and develop new, effective interventions. In this review, we cover the strengths and limitations of in vitro and in vivo model systems to study these complex intercellular interactions. Furthermore, we discuss advancements needed to maximize the translational utility of the model systems. As no single model can recapitulate all of the complex physiological and environmental conditions of the human vaginal microenvironment, we conclude that combinatorial approaches using in vitro and in vivo model systems will be required to address the remaining fundamental questions surrounding the enigma that is BV. PMID:27449872

  9. Synthesis of Clostridium cellulovorans minicellulosomes by intercellular complementation

    PubMed Central

    Arai, Takamitsu; Matsuoka, Satoshi; Cho, Hee-Yeon; Yukawa, Hideaki; Inui, Masayuki; Wong, Sui-Lam; Doi, Roy H.

    2007-01-01

    The ability of two strains of bacteria to cooperate in the synthesis of an enzyme complex (a minicellulosome) was examined. Three strains of Bacillus subtilis were constructed to express Clostridium cellulovorans genes engB, xynB, and minicbpA. MiniCbpA, EngB, and XynB were synthesized and secreted into the medium by B. subtilis. When the strains with the minicbpA and engB genes or with xynB were cocultured, minicellulosomes were synthesized, consisting in one case of miniCbpA and EngB and in the second case of miniCbpA and XynB. Both minicellulosomes showed their respective enzymatic activities. We call this phenomenon “intercellular complementation.” Interesting implications concerning bacterial cooperation are suggested from these results. PMID:17244702

  10. Tricellular Tight Junctions in the Inner Ear

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Tight junctions (TJs) are structures that seal the space between the epithelial cell sheets. In the inner ear, the barrier function of TJs is indispensable for the separation of the endolymphatic and perilymphatic spaces, which is essential for the generation and maintenance of the endocochlear potential (EP). TJs are formed by the intercellular binding of membrane proteins, known as claudins, and mutations in these proteins cause deafness in humans and mice. Within the epithelial cell sheet, however, a bound structure is present at the site where the corners of three cells meet (tricellular tight junctions (tTJs)), and the maintenance of the barrier function at this location cannot be explained by the claudins alone. Tricellulin and the angulin family of proteins (angulin-1/LSR, angulin-2/ILDR1, and angulin-3/ILDR2) have been identified as tTJ-associated proteins. Tricellulin and ILDR1 are localized at the tTJ and alterations in these proteins have been reported to be involved in deafness. In this review, we will present the current state of knowledge for tTJs. PMID:27195292

  11. Tricellular Tight Junctions in the Inner Ear.

    PubMed

    Kitajiri, Shin-Ichiro; Katsuno, Tatsuya

    2016-01-01

    Tight junctions (TJs) are structures that seal the space between the epithelial cell sheets. In the inner ear, the barrier function of TJs is indispensable for the separation of the endolymphatic and perilymphatic spaces, which is essential for the generation and maintenance of the endocochlear potential (EP). TJs are formed by the intercellular binding of membrane proteins, known as claudins, and mutations in these proteins cause deafness in humans and mice. Within the epithelial cell sheet, however, a bound structure is present at the site where the corners of three cells meet (tricellular tight junctions (tTJs)), and the maintenance of the barrier function at this location cannot be explained by the claudins alone. Tricellulin and the angulin family of proteins (angulin-1/LSR, angulin-2/ILDR1, and angulin-3/ILDR2) have been identified as tTJ-associated proteins. Tricellulin and ILDR1 are localized at the tTJ and alterations in these proteins have been reported to be involved in deafness. In this review, we will present the current state of knowledge for tTJs. PMID:27195292

  12. Keratins control intercellular adhesion involving PKC-α–mediated desmoplakin phosphorylation

    PubMed Central

    Kröger, Cornelia; Loschke, Fanny; Schwarz, Nicole; Windoffer, Reinhard; Leube, Rudolf E.

    2013-01-01

    Maintenance of epithelial cell adhesion is crucial for epidermal morphogenesis and homeostasis and relies predominantly on the interaction of keratins with desmosomes. Although the importance of desmosomes to epidermal coherence and keratin organization is well established, the significance of keratins in desmosome organization has not been fully resolved. Here, we report that keratinocytes lacking all keratins show elevated, PKC-α–mediated desmoplakin phosphorylation and subsequent destabilization of desmosomes. We find that PKC-α activity is regulated by Rack1–keratin interaction. Without keratins, desmosomes assemble but are endocytosed at accelerated rates, rendering epithelial sheets highly susceptible to mechanical stress. Re-expression of the keratin pair K5/14, inhibition of PKC-α activity, or blocking of endocytosis reconstituted both desmosome localization at the plasma membrane and epithelial adhesion. Our findings identify a hitherto unknown mechanism by which keratins control intercellular adhesion, with potential implications for tumor invasion and keratinopathies, settings in which diminished cell adhesion facilitates tissue fragility and neoplastic growth. PMID:23690176

  13. Polyamine signal through gap junctions: A key regulator of proliferation and gap-junction organization in mammalian tissues?

    PubMed

    Hamon, Loic; Savarin, Philippe; Pastré, David

    2016-06-01

    We propose that interaction rules derived from polyamine exchange in connected cells may explain the spatio-temporal organization of gap junctions observed during tissue regeneration and tumorigenesis. We also hypothesize that polyamine exchange can be considered as signal that allows cells to sense the proliferation status of their neighbors. Polyamines (putrescine, spermidine, and spermine) are indeed small aliphatic polycations that serve as fuels to sustain elevated proliferation rates of the order observed in cancer cells. Based on recent reports, we consider here that polyamines can be exchanged through gap junction channels between mammalian cells. Such intercellular exchange of polyamines has critical consequences on the local control of growth. In line with this hypothesis, the complex protein network that keeps polyamine levels finely tuned in mammalian cells can translate polyamine efflux or influx into integrated signals controlling transcription, translation, and cell communications. PMID:27125471

  14. Molecular organization of tricellular tight junctions.

    PubMed

    Furuse, Mikio; Izumi, Yasushi; Oda, Yukako; Higashi, Tomohito; Iwamoto, Noriko

    2014-01-01

    When the apicolateral border of epithelial cells is compared with a polygon, its sides correspond to the apical junctional complex, where cell adhesion molecules assemble from the plasma membranes of two adjacent cells. On the other hand, its vertices correspond to tricellular contacts, where the corners of three cells meet. Vertebrate tricellular contacts have specialized structures of tight junctions, termed tricellular tight junctions (tTJs). tTJs were identified by electron microscopic observations more than 40 years ago, but have been largely forgotten in epithelial cell biology since then. The identification of tricellulin and angulin family proteins as tTJ-associated membrane proteins has enabled us to study tTJs in terms of not only the paracellular barrier function but also unknown characteristics of epithelial cell corners via molecular biological approaches. PMID:25097825

  15. E-cadherin and Src associate with extradesmosomal Dsg3 and modulate desmosome assembly and adhesion.

    PubMed

    Rötzer, Vera; Hartlieb, Eva; Vielmuth, Franziska; Gliem, Martin; Spindler, Volker; Waschke, Jens

    2015-12-01

    Desmosomes provide strong intercellular cohesion essential for the integrity of cells and tissues exposed to continuous mechanical stress. For desmosome assembly, constitutively synthesized desmosomal cadherins translocate to the cell-cell border, cluster and mature in the presence of Ca(2+) to stable cell contacts. As adherens junctions precede the formation of desmosomes, we investigated in this study the relationship between the classical cadherin E-cadherin and the desmosomal cadherin Desmoglein 3 (Dsg3), the latter of which is indispensable for cell-cell adhesion in keratinocytes. By using autoantibodies from patients with the blistering skin disease pemphigus vulgaris (PV), we showed in loss of function studies that E-cadherin compensates for effects of desmosomal disassembly. Overexpression of E-cadherin reduced the loss of cell cohesion induced by PV autoantibodies and attenuated activation of p38 MAPK. Silencing of E-cadherin abolished the localization of Dsg3 at the membrane and resulted in a shift of Dsg3 from the cytoskeletal to the non-cytoskeletal protein pool which conforms to the notion that E-cadherin regulates desmosome assembly. Mechanistically, we identified a complex consisting of extradesmosomal Dsg3, E-cadherin, β-catenin and Src and that the stability of this complex is regulated by Src. Moreover, Dsg3 and E-cadherin are phosphorylated on tyrosine residues in a Src-dependent manner and Src activity is required for recruiting Dsg3 to the cytoskeletal pool as well as for desmosome maturation towards a Ca(2+)-insensitive state. Our data provide new insights into the role of E-cadherin and the contribution of Src signaling for formation and maintenance of desmosomal junctions. PMID:26115704

  16. Electrical and Spectroscopic Characterization of Metal-Molecule-Metal Junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayer, Theresa

    2005-03-01

    Considerable attention has been devoted to developing an understanding of the mechanisms that dominate electrical transport in metal- molecule-metal junctions comprised of single and small ensembles of molecules. In this talk, we will present an overview of recent research on the electrical and spectroscopic characterization of molecular junctions inserted along the length of sub-40-nm diameter Au and Pd metal nanowires (i.e., in-wire junctions) fabricated by template-directed synthesis. In particular, we will show results that investigate the relationship between the temperature dependent (10 -- 300 K) current-voltage (I-V) characteristics and the vibrational spectra measured by inelastic electron tunneling (IET) spectroscopy for candidate molecular wires and bistable switching molecules. The two types of molecular wire junctions that were studied incorporate a self assembled monolayer of dithiolated oligo(phenylene- ethynylene) (OPE) molecules or their -NO2 derivatives. The I-V of these junctions are stable and reproducible between +/-1V. Temperature independent I-V are measured for both types of junctions, which is indicative of coherent tunneling transport. Moreover, strong vibrations associated with υ(18b) and υ(19a) ring modes were observed in both junctions. In contrast, measurements of molecular junctions that incorporate SAMs based on aniline derivatives show reproducible bistable switching with an on-off ratio of >10:1 at 1V. Differences are observed in the vibrational spectra that depend on the state of the junction.

  17. Graphene/silicon nanowire Schottky junction for enhanced light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Fan, Guifeng; Zhu, Hongwei; Wang, Kunlin; Wei, Jinquan; Li, Xinming; Shu, Qinke; Guo, Ning; Wu, Dehai

    2011-03-01

    Schottky junction solar cells are assembled by directly coating graphene films on n-type silicon nanowire (SiNW) arrays. The graphene/SiNW junction shows enhanced light trapping and faster carrier transport compared to the graphene/planar Si structure. With chemical doping, the SiNW-based solar cells showed energy conversion efficiencies of up to 2.86% at AM1.5 condition, opening a possibility of using graphene/semiconductor nanostructures in photovoltaic application. PMID:21323376

  18. Evidence for a minigap in YBCO grain boundary Josephson junctions.

    PubMed

    Lucignano, P; Stornaiuolo, D; Tafuri, F; Altshuler, B L; Tagliacozzo, A

    2010-10-01

    Self-assembled YBaCuO diffusive grain boundary submicron Josephson junctions offer a realization of a special regime of the proximity effect, where normal state coherence prevails on the superconducting coherence in the barrier region. Resistance oscillations from the current-voltage characteristic encode mesoscopic information on the junction and more specifically on the minigap induced in the barrier. Their persistence at large voltages is evidence of the long lifetime of the antinodal (high energy) quasiparticles. PMID:21230860

  19. Gap junctions in the heart of the adult Protopterus aethiopicus.

    PubMed

    Scheuermann, D W; de Maziere, A

    1984-07-01

    In thin sections and in freeze-fracture replicas small and sparse gap junctions appear to be developed on the longitudinal plasma membrane of Protopterus cardiac cells near a macula or fascia adhaerens. By thin-section electron microscopy, they had septalaminar profiles with a length between 0.042 and 0.260 micron. In freeze-fracture images they appear on the P-fracture face as maculate particle aggregations with complementary pits on the E-fracture face. Particles with a central intercellular channel could be observed. The average center-to-center distance between neighbouring particles or pits is 10.05 +/- 1.87 nm (N = 2429). The diameter of the junctional maculae in replicas lies between 0.037 and 0.229 nm. The particle packing density increases in larger maculate aggregations, while particle-free areas emerge which could be related to the degradation or reformation of gap junctions Atypical configurations of gap junctions observed in the myocardium of lower vertebrates are rarely encountered in this primitive vertebrate. PMID:6485893

  20. Three-junction solar cell

    DOEpatents

    Ludowise, Michael J.

    1986-01-01

    A photovoltaic solar cell is formed in a monolithic semiconductor. The cell contains three junctions. In sequence from the light-entering face, the junctions have a high, a medium, and a low energy gap. The lower junctions are connected in series by one or more metallic members connecting the top of the lower junction through apertures to the bottom of the middle junction. The upper junction is connected in voltage opposition to the lower and middle junctions by second metallic electrodes deposited in holes 60 through the upper junction. The second electrodes are connected to an external terminal.

  1. TDP-43 is intercellularly transmitted across axon terminals

    PubMed Central

    Feiler, Marisa S.; Strobel, Benjamin; Freischmidt, Axel; Helferich, Anika M.; Kappel, Julia; Brewer, Bryson M.; Li, Deyu; Thal, Dietmar R.; Walther, Paul; Ludolph, Albert C.; Danzer, Karin M.

    2015-01-01

    Transactive response DNA-binding protein 43 kD (TDP-43) is an aggregation-prone prion-like domain-containing protein and component of pathological intracellular aggregates found in most amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patients. TDP-43 oligomers have been postulated to be released and subsequently nucleate TDP-43 oligomerization in recipient cells, which might be the molecular correlate of the systematic symptom spreading observed during ALS progression. We developed a novel protein complementation assay allowing quantification of TDP-43 oligomers in living cells. We demonstrate the exchange of TDP-43 between cell somata and the presence of TDP-43 oligomers in microvesicles/exosomes and show that microvesicular TDP-43 is preferentially taken up by recipient cells where it exerts higher toxicity than free TDP-43. Moreover, studies using microfluidic neuronal cultures suggest both anterograde and retrograde trans-synaptic spreading of TDP-43. Finally, we demonstrate TDP-43 oligomer seeding by TDP-43–containing material derived from both cultured cells and ALS patient brain lysate. Thus, using an innovative detection technique, we provide evidence for preferentially microvesicular uptake as well as both soma-to-soma “horizontal” and bidirectional “vertical” synaptic intercellular transmission and prion-like seeding of TDP-43. PMID:26598621

  2. Reconfigurable Microfluidics with Integrated Aptasensors for Monitoring Intercellular Communication

    PubMed Central

    Kwa, Timothy; Zhou, Qing; Gao, Yandong; Rahimian, Ali; Kwon, Lydia; Liu, Ying

    2015-01-01

    We report the development of a microsystem integrating anti-TNF-α aptasensors with vacuum-actuatable microfluidic devices that may be used to monitor intercellular communications. Actuatable chambers were used to expose to mitogen a group of ∼600 cells while not stimulating another group of monocytes only 600μm away. Co-localizing groups of cells with miniature 300μm diameter aptamer-modified electrodes enabled monitoring TNF-α release from each group independently. The microsystem allowed to observe the sequence of events that included 1) mitogenic activation of the first group of monocytes to produce TNF-α, 2) diffusion of TNF-α to the location of the second group of cells and 3) activation of the second group of cells resulting in production of TNF-α by these cells. Thus we were able to experimentally verify reciprocal paracrine cross-talk between the two groups of cells secretion the same signalling molecule. Given the prevalence of such cellular communications during injury, cancer or immune response and the dearth of available monitoring techniques, the microsystem described here is envisioned to have significant impact on cell biology. PMID:24700096

  3. Ionizing radiation induces human intercellular adhesion molecule-1 in vitro.

    PubMed

    Behrends, U; Peter, R U; Hintermeier-Knabe, R; Eissner, G; Holler, E; Bornkamm, G W; Caughman, S W; Degitz, K

    1994-11-01

    Intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) plays a central role in various inflammatory reactions and its expression is readily induced by inflammatory stimuli such as cytokines or ultraviolet irradiation. We have investigated the effect of ionizing radiation (IR) on human ICAM-1 expression in human cell lines and skin cultures. ICAM-1 mRNA levels in HL60, HaCaT, and HeLa cells were elevated at 3-6 h after irradiation and increased with doses from 10-40 Gy. The rapid induction of ICAM-1 occurred at the level of transcription, was independent of de novo protein synthesis, and did not involve autocrine stimuli including tumor necrosis factor-alpha and interleukin-1. IR also induced ICAM-1 cell surface expression within 24 h. Immunohistologic analysis of cultured human split skin revealed ICAM-1 upregulation on epidermal keratinocytes and dermal microvascular endothelial cells 24 h after exposure to 6 Gy. In conclusion, we propose ICAM-1 as an important radiation-induced enhancer of immunologic cell adhesion, which contributes to inflammatory reactions after local and total body irradiation. PMID:7963663

  4. Multiscale analysis of pattern formation via intercellular signalling.

    PubMed

    O'Dea, R D; King, J R

    2011-06-01

    Lateral inhibition, a juxtacrine signalling mechanism by which a cell adopting a particular fate inhibits neighbouring cells from doing likewise, has been shown to be a robust mechanism for the formation of fine-grained spatial patterns (in which adjacent cells in developing tissues diverge to achieve contrasting states of differentiation), provided that there is sufficiently strong feedback. The fine-grained nature of these patterns poses problems for analysis via traditional continuum methods since these require that significant variation takes place only over lengthscales much larger than an individual cell and such systems have therefore been investigated primarily using discrete methods. Here, however, we apply a multiscale method to derive systematically a continuum model from the discrete Delta-Notch signalling model of Collier et al. (J.R. Collier, N.A.M. Monk, P.K. Maini, J.H. Lewis, Pattern formation by lateral inhibition with feedback: a mathematical model of Delta-Notch intercellular signalling, J. Theor. Biol., 183, 1996, 429-446) under particular assumptions on the parameters, which we use to analyse the generation of fine-grained patterns. We show that, on the macroscale, the contact-dependent juxtacrine signalling interaction manifests itself as linear diffusion, motivating the use of reaction-diffusion-based models for such cell-signalling systems. We also analyse the travelling-wave behaviour of our system, obtaining good quantitative agreement with the discrete system. PMID:21385590

  5. Platelet-derived microvesicles: multitalented participants in intercellular communication.

    PubMed

    Aatonen, Maria; Grönholm, Mikaela; Siljander, Pia R-M

    2012-02-01

    Platelets can release a heterogeneous pool of vesicles which include plasma membrane-derived microparticles (PMPs) and multivesicular body-derived exosomes. As both vesicle types are generated upon activation and their distinction is complicated due to an overlap in their molecular properties and sizes, they are best discussed as an entity, the platelet-derived microvesicles (PMVs). PMPs can be formed through several induction pathways, which determine their different molecular profiles and facilitate tailor-made participation in intercellular communication. This dynamic variability may lie behind the multifaceted and sometimes very different observations of the PMPs in physiological and pathological settings. Currently, little is known of platelet-derived exosomes. In all, PMVs not only participate in several homeostatic multicellular processes, such as hemostasis, maintenance of vascular health, and immunity, but they also play a role in thrombotic and inflammatory diseases and cancer progression. In the past few years, the number of original articles and reviews on microvesicles has dramatically increased, but the data simultaneously raise further questions, the answers to which depend on forthcoming analytical improvements. In this article, the differential activation pathways and the molecular and functional properties of PMVs are reviewed in context with their sometimes paradoxical role in health and in disease. Also, the methodological issues of PMV detection and analysis are discussed in the light of recent advances within the field. PMID:22314608

  6. Exosomes Mediate the Intercellular Communication after Myocardial Infarction

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Ming-Jie; Maghsoudi, Taneen; Wang, Tao

    2016-01-01

    The mechanisms of cardiac repair after myocardial infarction (MI) are complicated and not well-understood currently. It is known that exosomes are released from most cells, recognized as new candidates with important roles in intercellular and tissue-level communication. Cells can package proteins and RNA messages into exosome and secret to recipient cells, which regulate gene expression in recipient cells. The research on exosomes in cardiovascular disease is just emerging. It is well-known that exosomes from cardiomyocyte can transfect endothelial cells, stem cells, fibroblasts and smooth muscle cells to induce cellular changes. After myocardial infarction (MI), the exosomes play important roles in local and distant microcommunication. Nowadays, exosomal microRNAs transportation has been found to deliver signals to mediate cardiac repair after MI. However, the exosomes quality and quantities are variable under different pathological conditions. Therefore, we speculate that the monitoring of the quality and quantity of exosomes may serve as diagnosis and prognosis biomarkers of MI, and the study of exosomes will provide insights for the new therapeutics to cardiac remodeling after MI. PMID:26941569

  7. Circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 in patients with systemic sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Sfikakis, P P; Tesar, J; Baraf, H; Lipnick, R; Klipple, G; Tsokos, G C

    1993-07-01

    In view of recent data demonstrating increased expression of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) in the skin of patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc) we studied whether levels of soluble ICAM-1 (s-ICAM-1) shed into the circulation are increased in patients with this disorder. We also compared blood levels of s-ICAM-1 in SSc with those in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and we investigated any possible association of s-ICAM-1 with soluble IL-2 receptor (s-IL 2R) levels, the latter being considered as a marker of lymphocyte activation. Patients with SSc had increased levels of sICAM-1 compared with healthy control subjects (mean +/- SEM, 587 +/- 34 versus 373 +/- 27 ng/ml, P < 0.0001). Patients with diffuse rapidly progressive disease had the highest s-ICAM-1 levels. No association was observed between the extent of skin or internal organ involvement and s-ICAM-1 levels. Patients with digital ulcers had significantly elevated s-ICAM-1, but not s-IL 2R, levels. No correlation was detected between individual s-ICAM-1 and S-IL 2R levels in SSc patients. These novel findings suggest that circulating s-ICAM-1 levels may be a useful marker of endothelial activation in SSc; however, further studies are needed to determine the role of ICAM-1 in the pathogenesis of this disorder. PMID:8099861

  8. SWEETs, transporters for intracellular and intercellular sugar translocation.

    PubMed

    Eom, Joon-Seob; Chen, Li-Qing; Sosso, Davide; Julius, Benjamin T; Lin, I W; Qu, Xiao-Qing; Braun, David M; Frommer, Wolf B

    2015-06-01

    Three families of transporters have been identified as key players in intercellular transport of sugars: MSTs (monosaccharide transporters), SUTs (sucrose transporters) and SWEETs (hexose and sucrose transporters). MSTs and SUTs fall into the major facilitator superfamily; SWEETs constitute a structurally different class of transporters with only seven transmembrane spanning domains. The predicted topology of SWEETs is supported by crystal structures of bacterial homologs (SemiSWEETs). On average, angiosperm genomes contain ∼20 paralogs, most of which serve distinct physiological roles. In Arabidopsis, AtSWEET8 and 13 feed the pollen; SWEET11 and 12 provide sucrose to the SUTs for phloem loading; AtSWEET11, 12 and 15 have distinct roles in seed filling; AtSWEET16 and 17 are vacuolar hexose transporters; and SWEET9 is essential for nectar secretion. The remaining family members await characterization, and could play roles in the gametophyte as well as other important roles in sugar transport in the plant. In rice and cassava, and possibly other systems, sucrose transporting SWEETs play central roles in pathogen resistance. Notably, the human genome also contains a glucose transporting isoform. Further analysis promises new insights into mechanism and regulation of assimilate allocation and a new potential for increasing crop yield. PMID:25988582

  9. Connexin-47 and connexin-32 in gap junctions of oligodendrocyte somata, myelin sheaths, paranodal loops and Schmidt-Lanterman incisures: implications for ionic homeostasis and potassium siphoning.

    PubMed

    Kamasawa, N; Sik, A; Morita, M; Yasumura, T; Davidson, K G V; Nagy, J I; Rash, J E

    2005-01-01

    The subcellular distributions and co-associations of the gap junction-forming proteins connexin 47 and connexin 32 were investigated in oligodendrocytes of adult mouse and rat CNS. By confocal immunofluorescence light microscopy, abundant connexin 47 was co-localized with astrocytic connexin 43 on oligodendrocyte somata, and along myelinated fibers, whereas connexin 32 without connexin 47 was co-localized with contactin-associated protein (caspr) in paranodes. By thin-section transmission electron microscopy, connexin 47 immunolabeling was on the oligodendrocyte side of gap junctions between oligodendrocyte somata and astrocytes. By freeze-fracture replica immunogold labeling, large gap junctions between oligodendrocyte somata and astrocyte processes contained much more connexin 47 than connexin 32. Along surfaces of internodal myelin, connexin 47 was several times as abundant as connexin 32, and in the smallest gap junctions, often occurred without connexin 32. In contrast, connexin 32 was localized without connexin 47 in newly-described autologous gap junctions in Schmidt-Lanterman incisures and between paranodal loops bordering nodes of Ranvier. Thus, connexin 47 in adult rodent CNS is the most abundant connexin in most heterologous oligodendrocyte-to-astrocyte gap junctions, whereas connexin 32 is the predominant if not sole connexin in autologous ("reflexive") oligodendrocyte gap junctions. These results clarify the locations and connexin compositions of heterologous and autologous oligodendrocyte gap junctions, identify autologous gap junctions at paranodes as potential sites for modulating paranodal electrical properties, and reveal connexin 47-containing and connexin 32-containing gap junctions as conduits for long-distance intracellular and intercellular movement of ions and associated osmotic water. The autologous gap junctions may regulate paranodal electrical properties during saltatory conduction. Acting in series and in parallel, autologous and

  10. Sertoli cell junctional proteins as early targets for different classes of reproductive toxicants.

    PubMed

    Fiorini, Céline; Tilloy-Ellul, Anne; Chevalier, Stephan; Charuel, Claude; Pointis, Georges

    2004-05-01

    In the testis, Sertoli cells establish intercellular junctions that are essential for spermatogenesis. The SerW3 Sertoli cell line displays some features of native Sertoli cells. Western blot and immunofluorescence analyses showed that SerW3 Sertoli cells expressed typical components of tight (occludin and zonula occludens-1), anchoring (N-cadherin) and gap (connexin 43) junctions. Testicular toxicants (DDT, pentachlorophenol, dieldrin, dinitrobenzene, cadmium chloride, cisplatin, gossypol, bisphenol A and tert-octylphenol) affected intercellular junctions by either reducing the amount or inducing aberrant intracellular localization of these membranous proteins. Phosphodiesterase inhibitors (isobutyl methylxantine, rolipram, zaprinast, zardaverine) did not alter junctional-complex component levels but caused a rapid and reversible redistribution of these proteins to the cytoplasmic compartment. The present study showed that occludin, ZO-1, N-cadherin and specifically Cx43 could be early targets for testicular toxicants. The SerW3 cell line therefore appears as a useful in vitro model to evaluate molecules with potential anti-reproductive effects. PMID:15082077

  11. Role of the septate junction in the regulation of paracellular transepithelial flow.

    PubMed

    Lord, B A; DiBona, D R

    1976-12-01

    A comparison of the distribution of septate junctions in invertebrate epithelia and tight junctions in vertebrate systems suggests that these structures may be functionally analogous. This proposition is supported by the internal design of each junction which constitutes a serial arrangement of structures crossing the intercellular space between cells to effectively provide resistance to the paracellular flow of water and small molecules. We have tested the validity of such an analogy by examining whether the osmotic sensitivity of the septate junctions of planarian epidermis follow the rather striking pattern observed for the junctions of very tight vertebrate epithelia (e.g. toad urinary bladder). It has been found that the septate junctions in this system respond in similar fashion to their vertebrate counterparts, blistering with accumulated fluid when the medium outside the epidermis is made hypertonic with small, water-soluble molecules. We conclude that the two types of junction probably are functionally analogous and that, in each case, this rectified structural response to transepithelial osmotic gradients may be indicative of the role of such structures in the transport function of epithelia. PMID:993276

  12. The role of intercellular communication and oxidative metabolism in the propagation of ionizing radiation-induced biological effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Autsavapromporn, Narongchai

    Coordinated interactions of specific molecular and biochemical processes are likely involved in the cellular responses to stresses induced by different ionizing radiations with distinctive linear energy transfer (LET) properties. Here, we investigated the roles and mechanisms of gap junction intercellular communication and oxidative metabolism in modulating cell killing and repair of potentially lethal damage (PLDR) in confluent AG1522 human fibroblasts exposed to 1 GeV protons (LET˜0.2 keV/μm), 137Cs γ rays (LET˜0.9 keV/μm), 241Am α particles (LET˜122 keV/μm) or 1 GeV/u iron ions (LET˜151 keV/μm) at doses by which all cells in the exposed cultures are irradiated. As expected, α-particles and iron ions were more effective than protons and γ rays at inducing cell killing. Holding γ- or proton-irradiated cells in the confluent state for several hours after irradiation promoted increased survival and decreased chromosomal damage. However, maintaining α-particle or iron ion-irradiated cells in the confluent state for various times prior to subculture resulted in increased rather than decreased lethality, and was associated with. persistent DNA damage and increased protein oxidation and lipid peroxidation. Inhibiting gap junction communication with 18-α-glycyrrhetinic acid or by knockdown of connexin43, a constitutive protein of junctional channels in these cells, protected against the toxic effects expressed in these cells during confluent holding. Up-regulation of antioxidant defense by ectopic over-expression of glutathione peroxidase, protected against cell killing by α-particles when cells were analyzed shortly after exposure. However, it did not attenuate the decrease in survival during confluent holding. Together, these findings indicate that the damaging effect of α particles results in oxidative stress, and the toxic effects in the hours following irradiation are amplified by intercellular communication, but the communicated molecule(s) is

  13. Intercellular Communication Amplifies Stressful Effects in High-Charge, High-Energy (HZE) Particle-Irradiated Human Cells

    PubMed Central

    AUTSAVAPROMPORN, Narongchai; DE TOLEDO, Sonia M.; BUONANNO, Manuela; JAY-GERIN, Jean-Paul; HARRIS, Andrew L.; AZZAM, Edouard I.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms that underlay the biological effects of particulate radiations is essential for space exploration and for radiotherapy. Here, we investigated the role of gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) in modulating harmful effects induced in confluent cultures wherein most cells are traversed by one or more radiation tracks. We focused on the effect of radiation quality (linear energy transfer; LET) on junctional propagation of DNA damage and cell death among the irradiated cells. Confluent normal human fibroblasts were exposed to graded doses of 1 GeV protons (LET ~0.2 keV/μm) or 1 GeV/u iron ions (LET ~151 keV/μm) and were assayed for clonogenic survival and for micronucleus formation, a reflection of DNA damage, shortly after irradiation and following longer incubation periods. Iron ions were ~2.7 fold more effective than protons at killing 90% of the cells in the exposed cultures when assayed within 5–10 minutes after irradiation. When cells were held in the confluent state for several hours after irradiation, substantial repair of potentially lethal damage (PLDR), coupled with a reduction in micronucleus formation, occurred in cells exposed to protons, but not in those exposed to iron ions. In fact, such confluent holding after exposure to a similarly toxic dose of iron ions enhanced the induced toxic effect. However, following iron ion irradiation, inhibition of GJIC by 18-α-glycyrrhetinic acid eliminated the enhanced toxicity and reduced micronucleus formation to levels below those detected in cells assayed shortly after irradiation. The data show that low LET radiation induces strong PLDR within hours, but that high LET radiation with similar immediate toxicity does not induce PLDR and its toxicity increases with time following irradiation. The results also show that GJIC among irradiated cells amplifies stressful effects following exposure to high, but not LET radiation, and that GJIC has only minimal effect on cellular

  14. Regulation of Hemichannels and Gap Junction Channels by Cytokines in Antigen-Presenting Cells

    PubMed Central

    Shoji, Kenji F.; Aguirre, Adam; Sáez, Juan C.

    2014-01-01

    Autocrine and paracrine signals coordinate responses of several cell types of the immune system that provide efficient protection against different challenges. Antigen-presenting cells (APCs) coordinate activation of this system via homocellular and heterocellular interactions. Cytokines constitute chemical intercellular signals among immune cells and might promote pro- or anti-inflammatory effects. During the last two decades, two membrane pathways for intercellular communication have been demonstrated in cells of the immune system. They are called hemichannels (HCs) and gap junction channels (GJCs) and provide new insights into the mechanisms of the orchestrated response of immune cells. GJCs and HCs are permeable to ions and small molecules, including signaling molecules. The direct intercellular transfer between contacting cells can be mediated by GJCs, whereas the release to or uptake from the extracellular milieu can be mediated by HCs. GJCs and HCs can be constituted by two protein families: connexins (Cxs) or pannexins (Panxs), which are present in almost all APCs, being Cx43 and Panx1 the most ubiquitous members of each protein family. In this review, we focus on the effects of different cytokines on the intercellular communication mediated by HCs and GJCs in APCs and their impact on purinergic signaling. PMID:25301274

  15. Telocytes in their context with other intercellular communication agents.

    PubMed

    Edelstein, Lawrence; Fuxe, Kjell; Levin, Michael; Popescu, Bogdan O; Smythies, John

    2016-07-01

    The past decade has borne witness to an explosion in our understanding of the fundamental complexities of intercellular communication. Previously, the field was solely defined by the simple exchange of endocrine, autocrine and epicrine agents. Then it was discovered that cells possess an elaborate system of extracellular vesicles, including exosomes, which carry a vast array of small and large molecules (including many epigenetic agents such as a variety RNAs and DNA), as well as large organelles that modulate almost every aspect of cellular function. In addition, it was thought that electrical communication between cells was limited mainly to neurotransmitters and neuromodulators in the nervous system. Also within the past decade, it was found that - in addition to neurons - most cells (both mammalian and non-mammalian) communicate via elaborate bioelectric systems which modulate many fundamental cellular processes including growth, differentiation, morphogenesis and repair. In the nervous system, volume transmission via the extracellular matrix has been added to the list. Lastly, it was discovered that what had previously been regarded as simple connective cells in most tissues proved to be miniature communication devices now known as telocytes. These unusually long, tenuous and sinuous cells utilize elaborate electrical, chemical and epigenetic mechanisms, including the exchange of exosomes, to integrate many activities within and between nearly all types of cells in tissues and organs. Their interrelationship with neural stem cells and neurogenesis in the context of neurodegenerative disease is just beginning to be explored. This review presents an account of precisely how each of these varied mechanisms are relevant and critical to the understanding of what telocytes are and how they function. PMID:27013113

  16. Intercellular Adhesion Molecule 1 Knockout Abrogates Radiation Induced Pulmonary Inflammation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hallahan, Dennis E.; Virudachalam, Subbulakshmi

    1997-06-01

    Increased expression of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1; CD54) is induced by exposure to ionizing radiation. The lung was used as a model to study the role of ICAM-1 in the pathogenesis of the radiation-induced inflammation-like response. ICAM-1 expression increased in the pulmonary microvascular endothelium and not in the endothelium of larger pulmonary vessels following treatment of mice with thoracic irradiation. To quantify radiation-induced ICAM-1 expression, we utilized fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis of anti-ICAM-1 antibody labeling of pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells from human cadaver donors (HMVEC-L cells). Fluorochrome conjugates and UV microscopy were used to quantify the fluorescence intensity of ICAM in the irradiated lung. These studies showed a dose- and time-dependent increase in ICAM-1 expression in the pulmonary microvascular endothelium. Peak expression occurred at 24 h, while threshold dose was as low as 2 Gy. To determine whether ICAM-1 is required for inflammatory cell infiltration into the irradiated lung, the anti-ICAM-1 blocking antibody was administered by tail vein injection to mice following thoracic irradiation. Inflammatory cells were quantified by immunofluorescence for leukocyte common antigen (CD45). Mice treated with the anti-ICAM-1 blocking antibody showed attenuation of inflammatory cell infiltration into the lung in response to ionizing radiation exposure. To verify the requirement of ICAM-1 in the inflammation-like radiation response, we utilized the ICAM-1 knockout mouse. ICAM-1 was not expressed in the lungs of ICAM-1-deficient mice following treatment with thoracic irradiation. ICAM-1 knockout mice had no increase in the inflammatory cell infiltration into the lung in response to thoracic irradiation. These studies demonstrate a radiation dose-dependent increase in ICAM-1 expression in the pulmonary microvascular endothelium, and show that ICAM-1 is required for inflammatory cell infiltration

  17. Intercellular adhesion molecule 1 knockout abrogates radiation induced pulmonary inflammation.

    PubMed

    Hallahan, D E; Virudachalam, S

    1997-06-10

    Increased expression of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1; CD54) is induced by exposure to ionizing radiation. The lung was used as a model to study the role of ICAM-1 in the pathogenesis of the radiation-induced inflammation-like response. ICAM-1 expression increased in the pulmonary microvascular endothelium and not in the endothelium of larger pulmonary vessels following treatment of mice with thoracic irradiation. To quantify radiation-induced ICAM-1 expression, we utilized fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis of anti-ICAM-1 antibody labeling of pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells from human cadaver donors (HMVEC-L cells). Fluorochrome conjugates and UV microscopy were used to quantify the fluorescence intensity of ICAM in the irradiated lung. These studies showed a dose- and time-dependent increase in ICAM-1 expression in the pulmonary microvascular endothelium. Peak expression occurred at 24 h, while threshold dose was as low as 2 Gy. To determine whether ICAM-1 is required for inflammatory cell infiltration into the irradiated lung, the anti-ICAM-1 blocking antibody was administered by tail vein injection to mice following thoracic irradiation. Inflammatory cells were quantified by immunofluorescence for leukocyte common antigen (CD45). Mice treated with the anti-ICAM-1 blocking antibody showed attenuation of inflammatory cell infiltration into the lung in response to ionizing radiation exposure. To verify the requirement of ICAM-1 in the inflammation-like radiation response, we utilized the ICAM-1 knockout mouse. ICAM-1 was not expressed in the lungs of ICAM-1-deficient mice following treatment with thoracic irradiation. ICAM-1 knockout mice had no increase in the inflammatory cell infiltration into the lung in response to thoracic irradiation. These studies demonstrate a radiation dose-dependent increase in ICAM-1 expression in the pulmonary microvascular endothelium, and show that ICAM-1 is required for inflammatory cell infiltration

  18. Polysaccharide intercellular adhesin in biofilm: structural and regulatory aspects

    PubMed Central

    Arciola, Carla Renata; Campoccia, Davide; Ravaioli, Stefano; Montanaro, Lucio

    2015-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis are the leading etiologic agents of implant-related infections. Biofilm formation is the main pathogenetic mechanism leading to the chronicity and irreducibility of infections. The extracellular polymeric substances of staphylococcal biofilms are the polysaccharide intercellular adhesin (PIA), extracellular-DNA, proteins, and amyloid fibrils. PIA is a poly-β(1-6)-N-acetylglucosamine (PNAG), partially deacetylated, positively charged, whose synthesis is mediated by the icaADBC locus. DNA sequences homologous to ica locus are present in many coagulase-negative staphylococcal species, among which S. lugdunensis, however, produces a biofilm prevalently consisting of proteins. The product of icaA is an N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase that synthetizes PIA oligomers from UDP-N-acetylglucosamine. The product of icaD gives optimal efficiency to IcaA. The product of icaC is involved in the externalization of the nascent polysaccharide. The product of icaB is an N-deacetylase responsible for the partial deacetylation of PIA. The expression of ica locus is affected by environmental conditions. In S. aureus and S. epidermidis ica-independent alternative mechanisms of biofilm production have been described. S. epidermidis and S. aureus undergo to a phase variation for the biofilm production that has been ascribed, in turn, to the transposition of an insertion sequence in the icaC gene or to the expansion/contraction of a tandem repeat naturally harbored within icaC. A role is played by the quorum sensing system, which negatively regulates biofilm formation, favoring the dispersal phase that disseminates bacteria to new infection sites. Interfering with the QS system is a much debated strategy to combat biofilm-related infections. In the search of vaccines against staphylococcal infections deacetylated PNAG retained on the surface of S. aureus favors opsonophagocytosis and is a potential candidate for immune-protection. PMID

  19. Metal-free molecular junctions on ITO via amino-silane binding—towards optoelectronic molecular junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sergani, S.; Furmansky, Y.; Visoly-Fisher, I.

    2013-11-01

    Light control over currents in molecular junctions is desirable as a non-contact input with high spectral and spatial resolution provided by the photonic input and the molecular electronics element, respectively. Expanding the study of molecular junctions to non-metallic transparent substrates, such as indium tin oxide (ITO), is vital for the observation of molecular optoelectronic effects. Non-metallic electrodes are expected to decrease the probability of quenching of molecular photo-excited states, light-induced plasmonic effects, or significant electrode expansion under visible light. We have developed micron-sized, metal free, optically addressable ITO molecular junctions with a conductive polymer serving as the counter-electrode. The electrical transport was shown to be dominated by the nature of the self-assembled monolayer (SAM). The use of amino-silane (APTMS) as the chemical binding scheme to ITO was found to be significant in determining the transport properties of the junctions. APTMS allows high junction yields and the formation of dense molecular layers preventing electrical short. However, polar amino-silane binding to the ITO significantly decreased the conductance compared to thiol-bound SAMs, and caused tilted geometry and disorder in the molecular layer. As the effect of the molecular structure on transport properties is clearly observed in our junctions, such metal-free junctions are suitable for characterizing the optoelectronic properties of molecular junctions.

  20. Metal-free molecular junctions on ITO via amino-silane binding-towards optoelectronic molecular junctions.

    PubMed

    Sergani, S; Furmansky, Y; Visoly-Fisher, I

    2013-11-15

    Light control over currents in molecular junctions is desirable as a non-contact input with high spectral and spatial resolution provided by the photonic input and the molecular electronics element, respectively. Expanding the study of molecular junctions to non-metallic transparent substrates, such as indium tin oxide (ITO), is vital for the observation of molecular optoelectronic effects. Non-metallic electrodes are expected to decrease the probability of quenching of molecular photo-excited states, light-induced plasmonic effects, or significant electrode expansion under visible light. We have developed micron-sized, metal free, optically addressable ITO molecular junctions with a conductive polymer serving as the counter-electrode. The electrical transport was shown to be dominated by the nature of the self-assembled monolayer (SAM). The use of amino-silane (APTMS) as the chemical binding scheme to ITO was found to be significant in determining the transport properties of the junctions. APTMS allows high junction yields and the formation of dense molecular layers preventing electrical short. However, polar amino-silane binding to the ITO significantly decreased the conductance compared to thiol-bound SAMs, and caused tilted geometry and disorder in the molecular layer. As the effect of the molecular structure on transport properties is clearly observed in our junctions, such metal-free junctions are suitable for characterizing the optoelectronic properties of molecular junctions. PMID:24129428

  1. Doped semiconductor nanocrystal junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borowik, Ł.; Nguyen-Tran, T.; Roca i Cabarrocas, P.; Mélin, T.

    2013-11-01

    Semiconductor junctions are the basis of electronic and photovoltaic devices. Here, we investigate junctions formed from highly doped (ND≈1020-1021cm-3) silicon nanocrystals (NCs) in the 2-50 nm size range, using Kelvin probe force microscopy experiments with single charge sensitivity. We show that the charge transfer from doped NCs towards a two-dimensional layer experimentally follows a simple phenomenological law, corresponding to formation of an interface dipole linearly increasing with the NC diameter. This feature leads to analytically predictable junction properties down to quantum size regimes: NC depletion width independent of the NC size and varying as ND-1/3, and depleted charge linearly increasing with the NC diameter and varying as ND1/3. We thus establish a "nanocrystal counterpart" of conventional semiconductor planar junctions, here however valid in regimes of strong electrostatic and quantum confinements.

  2. Depletion of E-Cadherin Disrupts Establishment but Not Maintenance of Cell Junctions in Madin-Darby Canine Kidney Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Capaldo, Christopher T.

    2007-01-01

    E-cadherin forms calcium-dependent homophilic intercellular adhesions between epithelial cells. These contacts regulate multiple aspects of cell behavior, including the organization of intercellular tight junctions (TJs). To distinguish between the roles of E-cadherin in formation versus maintenance of junctions, Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells were depleted of E-cadherin by RNA interference. Surprisingly, reducing E-cadherin expression had little effect on the protein levels or localization of adherens junction (AJ) or TJ markers. The cells underwent morphological changes, as the normally flat apical surface swelled into a dome. However, apical–basal polarity was not compromised, transmembrane resistance was normal, and zonula occludin protein 1 dynamics at the TJs were unchanged. Additionally, an E-cadherin/Cadherin-6 double knockdown also failed to disrupt established TJs, although β-catenin was lost from the cell cortex. Nevertheless, cells depleted of E-cadherin failed to properly reestablish cell polarity after junction disassembly. Recovery of cell–cell adhesion, transepithelial resistance, and the localization of TJ and AJ markers were all delayed. In contrast, depletion of α-catenin caused long-term disruption of junctions. These results indicate that E-cadherin and Cadherin-6 function as a scaffold for the construction of polarized structures, and they become largely dispensable in mature junctions, whereas α-catenin is essential for the maintenance of functional junctions. PMID:17093058

  3. Effects of surface chemistry prepared by self-assembled monolayers on osteoblast behavior.

    PubMed

    Nakaoka, Ryusuke; Yamakoshi, Yoko; Isama, Kazuo; Tsuchiya, Toshie

    2010-08-01

    A surface of biomaterials is known to affect the behavior of cells after their adhesion on the surface, indicating that surface characteristics of biomaterials play an important role in cell adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation. To assess the effects of functional groups on biomaterial surface, normal human osteoblasts (NHOsts) were cultured on surfaces coated with self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) containing various functional groups, and the adhesion, proliferation, differentiation, and gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) of the NHOsts were investigated. In the case of SAM with terminal methyl groups (hydrophobic surface), NHOst adhesion and proliferation was less prevalent. In contrast, NHOsts were adhered well on SAMs with hydroxyl, carboxyl, amino, phosphate, and sulfate group, which are relatively hydrophilic, their proliferation and differentiation level were dependent on the type of functional groups. Especially, when they were cultured on either SAMs with phosphate or sulfate group, both their alkaline phosphate activity and the calcium deposition by them were enhanced more than those cultured on a collagen-coated dish. More interestingly, GJIC of NHOsts, which has been reported to play a role in cell differentiation as well as homeostasis of cells, were not significantly different among the SAM surfaces tested. These suggest that a specific functional group on a material surface can regulate NHOst adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation via cell-functional group interaction without influencing their homeostasis. PMID:20186768

  4. Quantum junction solar cells.

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-12

    Colloidal quantum dot solids combine convenient solution-processing with quantum size effect tuning, offering avenues to high-efficiency multijunction cells based on a single materials synthesis and processing platform. The highest-performing colloidal quantum dot rectifying devices reported to date have relied on a junction between a quantum-tuned absorber and a bulk material (e.g., TiO(2)); however, quantum tuning of the absorber then requires complete redesign of the bulk acceptor, compromising the benefits of facile quantum tuning. Here we report rectifying junctions constructed entirely using inherently band-aligned quantum-tuned materials. Realizing these quantum junction diodes relied upon the creation of an n-type quantum dot solid having a clean bandgap. We combine stable, chemically compatible, high-performance n-type and p-type materials to create the first quantum junction solar cells. We present a family of photovoltaic devices having widely tuned bandgaps of 0.6-1.6 eV that excel where conventional quantum-to-bulk devices fail to perform. Devices having optimal single-junction bandgaps exhibit certified AM1.5 solar power conversion efficiencies of 5.4%. Control over doping in quantum solids, and the successful integration of these materials to form stable quantum junctions, offers a powerful new degree of freedom to colloidal quantum dot optoelectronics. PMID:22881834

  5. Virally-expressed connexin26 restores gap junction function in the cochlea of conditional Gjb2 knockout mice

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Qing; Wang, Yunfeng; Chang, Qing; Wang, Jianjun; Gong, Shushen; Li, Huawei; Lin, Xi

    2013-01-01

    Mutations in GJB2, which codes for the gap junction protein connexin26, are the most common causes of human nonsyndromic hereditary deafness. We inoculated modified adeno-associated viral vectors into the scala media of early postnatal conditional Gjb2 knockout mice to drive exogenous connexin26 expression. We found extensive virally-expressed connexin26 in cells lining the scala media, and intercellular gap junction network was re-established in the organ of Corti of mutant mouse cochlea. Widespread ectopic connexin26 expression neither formed ectopic gap junctions nor affected normal hearing thresholds in wild type mice, suggesting that autonomous cellular mechanisms regulate proper membrane trafficking of exogenously-expressed connexin26 and govern the functional manifestation of them. Functional recovery of gap-junction-mediated coupling among the supporting cells was observed. We found that both cell death in the organ of Corti and degeneration of spiral ganglion neurons in the cochlea of mutant mice were substantially reduced, although auditory brainstem responses did not show significant hearing improvement. This is the first report demonstrating that virally-mediated gene therapy restored extensive gap junction intercellular network among cochlear non-sensory cells in vivo. Such a treatment performed at early postnatal stages resulted in a partial rescue of disease phenotypes in the cochlea of the mutant mice. PMID:24225640

  6. Electron tomography of paranodal septate-like junctions and the associated axonal and glial cytoskeletons in the central nervous system.

    PubMed

    Nans, Andrea; Einheber, Steven; Salzer, James L; Stokes, David L

    2011-03-01

    The polarized domains of myelinated axons are specifically organized to maximize the efficiency of saltatory conduction. The paranodal region is directly adjacent to the node of Ranvier and contains specialized septate-like junctions that provide adhesion between axons and glial cells and that constitute a lateral diffusion barrier for nodal components. To complement and extend earlier studies on the peripheral nervous system, electron tomography was used to image paranodal regions from the central nervous system (CNS). Our three-dimensional reconstructions revealed short filamentous linkers running directly from the septate-like junctions to neurofilaments, microfilaments, and organelles within the axon. The intercellular spacing between axons and glia was measured to be 7.4 ± 0.6 nm, over twice the value previously reported in the literature (2.5-3.0 nm). Averaging of individual junctions revealed a bifurcated structure in the intercellular space that is consistent with a dimeric complex of cell adhesion molecules composing the septate-like junction. Taken together, these findings provide new insight into the structural organization of CNS paranodes and suggest that, in addition to providing axo-glial adhesion, cytoskeletal linkage to the septate-like junctions may be required to maintain axonal domains and to regulate organelle transport in myelinated axons. PMID:21259318

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

    SciTech Connect

    Shinotsuka, Takanori; Yasui, Masato; Nuriya, Mutsuo

    2014-02-07

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Mylvaganam, Shanthini; Ramani, Meera; Krawczyk, Michal; Carlen, Peter L.

    2014-01-01

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

  9. Turbine vane plate assembly

    DOEpatents

    Schiavo Jr., Anthony L.

    2006-01-10

    A turbine vane assembly includes a turbine vane having first and second shrouds with an elongated airfoil extending between. Each end of the airfoil transitions into a shroud at a respective junction. Each of the shrouds has a plurality of cooling passages, and the airfoil has a plurality of cooling passages extending between the first and second shrouds. A substantially flat inner plate and an outer plate are coupled to each of the first and second shrouds so as to form inner and outer plenums. Each inner plenum is defined between at least the junction and the substantially flat inner plate; each outer plenum is defined between at least the substantially flat inner plate and the outer plate. Each inner plenum is in fluid communication with a respective outer plenum through at least one of the cooling passages in the respective shroud.

  10. ELECTRON MICROSCOPE STUDIES ON SOMA-SOMATIC INTERNEURONAL JUNCTIONS IN THE CORPUS PEDUNCULATUM OF THE WOOD ANT (FORMICA LUGUBRIS ZETT.)

    PubMed Central

    Landolt, Alex M.; Ris, Hans

    1966-01-01

    1. The corpora pedunculata of the wood ant (Formica lugubris Zett.) contain densely packed neuron perikarya which are separated by ultrathin glial sheaths. 2. These glial sheaths are occasionally interrupted by round holes with an average surface area of 2.64 µ2. The holes are designated glial windows since they represent intracellular gaps of glial cytoplasm. 3. The glial windows allow soma-somatic interneuronal junctions. Of all adjacent neurons in a selected neuron pool, only 42% were interconnected by such junctions. 4. The intercellular space at the soma-somatic junctions has an average diameter of 30 A; occasionally, it is collapsed and an external compound membrane ensues. The junctional membranes are characterized by the presence of a subunit pattern of cross-directional electron-opaque lines with a 50- to 70-A periodicity. 5. Morphological signs of chemical transmission are absent in these junctions. On the other hand, there is a striking similarity in structural organization between soma-somatic junctions and electrical synapses described in other species. Therefore, it is suggested that these cell contacts of the ant's "cerebral cortex" are another form of electrical junction. 6. The close proximity of the junctions to the cell nucleus is noted. Its significance could not be ascertained. 7. The suggestion is made that glial windows may have dynamic properties and may intervene in the regulation of interneuronal transfer of information. PMID:5914698

  11. The Nectin-4/Afadin Protein Complex and Intercellular Membrane Pores Contribute to Rapid Spread of Measles Virus in Primary Human Airway Epithelia

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Brajesh K.; Hornick, Andrew L.; Krishnamurthy, Sateesh; Locke, Anna C.; Mendoza, Crystal A.; Mateo, Mathieu; Miller-Hunt, Catherine L.; Cattaneo, Roberto

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT The discovery that measles virus (MV) uses the adherens junction protein nectin-4 as its epithelial receptor provides a new vantage point from which to characterize its rapid spread in the airway epithelium. We show here that in well-differentiated primary cultures of airway epithelial cells from human donors (HAE), MV infectious centers form rapidly and become larger than those of other respiratory pathogens: human respiratory syncytial virus, parainfluenza virus 5, and Sendai virus. While visible syncytia do not form after MV infection of HAE, the cytoplasm of an infected cell suddenly flows into an adjacent cell, as visualized through wild-type MV-expressed cytoplasmic green fluorescent protein (GFP). High-resolution video microscopy documents that GFP flows through openings that form on the lateral surfaces between columnar epithelial cells. To assess the relevance of the protein afadin, which connects nectin-4 to the actin cytoskeleton, we knocked down its mRNA. This resulted in more-limited infectious-center formation. We also generated a nectin-4 mutant without the afadin-binding site in its cytoplasmic tail. This mutant was less effective than wild-type human nectin-4 at promoting MV infection in primary cultures of porcine airway epithelia. Thus, in airway epithelial cells, MV spread requires the nectin-4/afadin complex and is based on cytoplasm transfer between columnar cells. Since the viral membrane fusion apparatus may open the passages that allow cytoplasm transfer, we refer to them as intercellular membrane pores. Virus-induced intercellular pores may contribute to extremely efficient measles contagion by promoting the rapid spread of the virus through the upper respiratory epithelium. IMPORTANCE Measles virus (MV), while targeted for eradication, still causes about 120,000 deaths per year worldwide. The recent reemergence of measles in insufficiently vaccinated populations in Europe and North America reminds us that measles is extremely

  12. 16. VIEW OF JUNCTION BETWEEN CABLE CHASE AND SHIELDING TANK. ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    16. VIEW OF JUNCTION BETWEEN CABLE CHASE AND SHIELDING TANK. SHOWS CABLES AND LINES IN THE TRENCH, POLE OF FRAME ASSEMBLY, AND EQUIPMENT IN CONCRETE BOX ADJACENT TO CABLE CHASE. INEL PHOTO NUMBER 65-6178, TAKEN NOVEMBER 10, 1965. - Idaho National Engineering Laboratory, Advanced Reentry Vehicle Fusing System, Scoville, Butte County, ID

  13. Optically switchable molecular device using microsphere based junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faramarzi, V.; Raimondo, C.; Reinders, F.; Mayor, M.; Samorı, P.; Doudin, B.

    2011-12-01

    Metallic planar electrodes are bridged using microspheres coated with chemisorbed azobenzene self-assembled monolayers. The circuit exhibits light-induced switching, with reproducibility over 90%, as statistically determined and compared to junctions incorporating photo-insensitive alkanethiol layers. Microsphere interconnects provide direct access to molecular transport properties, with reliability and stability, making multifunctional molecular electronics devices possible.

  14. Carbon nanotube intramolecular junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Zhen; Postma, Henk W. Ch.; Balents, Leon; Dekker, Cees

    1999-11-01

    The ultimate device miniaturization would be to use individual molecules as functional devices. Single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) are promising candidates for achieving this: depending on their diameter and chirality, they are either one-dimensional metals or semiconductors. Single-electron transistors employing metallic nanotubes and field-effect transistors employing semiconducting nanotubes have been demonstrated. Intramolecular devices have also been proposed which should display a range of other device functions. For example, by introducing a pentagon and a heptagon into the hexagonal carbon lattice, two tube segments with different atomic and electronic structures can be seamlessly fused together to create intramolecular metal-metal, metal-semiconductor, or semiconductor-semiconductor junctions. Here we report electrical transport measurements on SWNTs with intramolecular junctions. We find that a metal-semiconductor junction behaves like a rectifying diode with nonlinear transport characteristics that are strongly asymmetric with respect to bias polarity. In the case of a metal-metal junction, the conductance appears to be strongly suppressed and it displays a power-law dependence on temperatures and applied voltage, consistent with tunnelling between the ends of two Luttinger liquids. Our results emphasize the need to consider screening and electron interactions when designing and modelling molecular devices. Realization of carbon-based molecular electronics will require future efforts in the controlled production of these intramolecular nanotube junctions.

  15. Epithelial junctions and Rho family GTPases: the zonular signalosome

    PubMed Central

    Citi, Sandra; Guerrera, Diego; Spadaro, Domenica; Shah, Jimit

    2014-01-01

    The establishment and maintenance of epithelial cell-cell junctions is crucially important to regulate adhesion, apico-basal polarity and motility of epithelial cells, and ultimately controls the architecture and physiology of epithelial organs. Junctions are supported, shaped and regulated by cytoskeletal filaments, whose dynamic organization and contractility are finely tuned by GTPases of the Rho family, primarily RhoA, Rac1 and Cdc42. Recent research has identified new molecular mechanisms underlying the cross-talk between these GTPases and epithelial junctions. Here we briefly summarize the current knowledge about the organization, molecular evolution and cytoskeletal anchoring of cell-cell junctions, and we comment on the most recent advances in the characterization of the interactions between Rho GTPases and junctional proteins, and their consequences with regards to junction assembly and regulation of cell behavior in vertebrate model systems. The concept of “zonular signalosome” is proposed, which highlights the close functional relationship between proteins of zonular junctions (zonulae occludentes and adhaerentes) and the control of cytoskeletal organization and signaling through Rho GTPases, transcription factors, and their effectors. PMID:25483301

  16. Four-junction superconducting circuit.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Yueyin; Xiong, Wei; He, Xiao-Ling; Li, Tie-Fu; You, J Q

    2016-01-01

    We develop a theory for the quantum circuit consisting of a superconducting loop interrupted by four Josephson junctions and pierced by a magnetic flux (either static or time-dependent). In addition to the similarity with the typical three-junction flux qubit in the double-well regime, we demonstrate the difference of the four-junction circuit from its three-junction analogue, including its advantages over the latter. Moreover, the four-junction circuit in the single-well regime is also investigated. Our theory provides a tool to explore the physical properties of this four-junction superconducting circuit. PMID:27356619

  17. Four-junction superconducting circuit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, Yueyin; Xiong, Wei; He, Xiao-Ling; Li, Tie-Fu; You, J. Q.

    2016-06-01

    We develop a theory for the quantum circuit consisting of a superconducting loop interrupted by four Josephson junctions and pierced by a magnetic flux (either static or time-dependent). In addition to the similarity with the typical three-junction flux qubit in the double-well regime, we demonstrate the difference of the four-junction circuit from its three-junction analogue, including its advantages over the latter. Moreover, the four-junction circuit in the single-well regime is also investigated. Our theory provides a tool to explore the physical properties of this four-junction superconducting circuit.

  18. Four-junction superconducting circuit

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Yueyin; Xiong, Wei; He, Xiao-Ling; Li, Tie-Fu; You, J. Q.

    2016-01-01

    We develop a theory for the quantum circuit consisting of a superconducting loop interrupted by four Josephson junctions and pierced by a magnetic flux (either static or time-dependent). In addition to the similarity with the typical three-junction flux qubit in the double-well regime, we demonstrate the difference of the four-junction circuit from its three-junction analogue, including its advantages over the latter. Moreover, the four-junction circuit in the single-well regime is also investigated. Our theory provides a tool to explore the physical properties of this four-junction superconducting circuit. PMID:27356619

  19. Heterotypic gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses are abundant in goldfish brain

    PubMed Central

    Rash, John E.; Kamasawa, Naomi; Vanderpool, Kimberly G.; Yasumura, Thomas; O'Brien, John; Nannapaneni, Srikant; Pereda, Alberto E.; Nagy, James I.

    2014-01-01

    Gap junctions provide for direct intercellular electrical and metabolic coupling. The abundance of gap junctions at “large myelinated club ending” synapses on Mauthner cells of the teleost brain provided a convenient model to correlate anatomical and physiological properties of electrical synapses. There, presynaptic action potentials were found to evoke short-latency electrical “pre-potentials” immediately preceding their accompanying glutamate-induced depolarizations, making these the first unambiguously identified “mixed” (i.e., chemical plus electrical) synapses in the vertebrate CNS. We recently showed that gap junctions at these synapses exhibit asymmetric electrical resistance (i.e., electrical rectification), which we correlated with total molecular asymmetry of connexin composition in their apposing gap junction hemiplaques, with Cx35 restricted to axon terminal hemiplaques and Cx34.7 restricted to apposing Mauthner cell plasma membranes. We now show that similarly heterotypic neuronal gap junctions are abundant throughout goldfish brain, with labeling exclusively for Cx35 in presynaptic hemiplaques and exclusively for Cx34.7 in postsynaptic hemiplaques. Moreover, the vast majority of these asymmetric gap junctions occur at glutamatergic axon terminals. The widespread distribution of heterotypic gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses throughout goldfish brain and spinal cord implies that pre- vs. postsynaptic asymmetry at electrical synapses evolved early in the chordate lineage. We propose that the advantages of the molecular and functional asymmetry of connexins at electrical synapses that are so prominently expressed in the teleost CNS are unlikely to have been abandoned in higher vertebrates. However, to create asymmetric coupling in mammals, where most gap junctions are composed of Cx36 on both sides, would require some other mechanism, such as differential phosphorylation of connexins on opposite sides of the same gap junction or

  20. Heterotypic gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses are abundant in goldfish brain.

    PubMed

    Rash, J E; Kamasawa, N; Vanderpool, K G; Yasumura, T; O'Brien, J; Nannapaneni, S; Pereda, A E; Nagy, J I

    2015-01-29

    Gap junctions provide for direct intercellular electrical and metabolic coupling. The abundance of gap junctions at "large myelinated club ending (LMCE)" synapses on Mauthner cells (M-cells) of the teleost brain provided a convenient model to correlate anatomical and physiological properties of electrical synapses. There, presynaptic action potentials were found to evoke short-latency electrical "pre-potentials" immediately preceding their accompanying glutamate-induced depolarizations, making these the first unambiguously identified "mixed" (i.e., chemical plus electrical) synapses in the vertebrate CNS. We recently showed that gap junctions at these synapses exhibit asymmetric electrical resistance (i.e., electrical rectification), which we correlated with total molecular asymmetry of connexin composition in their apposing gap junction hemiplaques, with connexin35 (Cx35) restricted to axon terminal hemiplaques and connexin34.7 (Cx34.7) restricted to apposing M-cell plasma membranes. We now show that similarly heterotypic neuronal gap junctions are abundant throughout goldfish brain, with labeling exclusively for Cx35 in presynaptic hemiplaques and exclusively for Cx34.7 in postsynaptic hemiplaques. Moreover, the vast majority of these asymmetric gap junctions occur at glutamatergic axon terminals. The widespread distribution of heterotypic gap junctions at glutamatergic mixed synapses throughout goldfish brain and spinal cord implies that pre- vs. postsynaptic asymmetry at electrical synapses evolved early in the chordate lineage. We propose that the advantages of the molecular and functional asymmetry of connexins at electrical synapses that are so prominently expressed in the teleost CNS are unlikely to have been abandoned in higher vertebrates. However, to create asymmetric coupling in mammals, where most gap junctions are composed of connexin36 (Cx36) on both sides, would require some other mechanism, such as differential phosphorylation of connexins on

  1. T-Junction Benchmark

    SciTech Connect

    2010-01-01

    Part 1: Two different volume renderings of fluid temperatures in a turbulent T-junction mixing problem at Reynolds number Re=40,000. Part 2: Volume rendering of fluid temperatures in a turbulent T-junction mixing problem at Reynolds number Re=40,000, simulated using Nek5000 at three different resolutions. Part 3: Temperature distribution for a turbulent T-junction mixing problem at Reynolds number Re=40,000, simulated using Nek5000 with 89056 spectral elements of order N=9 (65 million grid points). Credits: Science: Aleks Obabko and Paul Fisher, Argonne National Laboratory
 Visualization: Hank Childs, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

 This research used resources of the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility at Argonne National Laboratory, which is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy under contract DE-AC02-06CH11357

  2. Contribution of host intracellular transport machineries to intercellular movement of turnip mosaic virus.

    PubMed

    Agbeci, Maxime; Grangeon, Romain; Nelson, Richard S; Zheng, Huanquan; Laliberté, Jean-François

    2013-01-01

    The contribution of different host cell transport systems in the intercellular movement of turnip mosaic virus (TuMV) was investigated. To discriminate between primary infections and secondary infections associated with the virus intercellular movement, a gene cassette expressing GFP-HDEL was inserted adjacent to a TuMV infectious cassette expressing 6K₂:mCherry, both within the T-DNA borders of the binary vector pCambia. In this system, both gene cassettes were delivered to the same cell by a single binary vector and primary infection foci emitted green and red fluorescence while secondarily infected cells emitted only red fluorescence. Intercellular movement was measured at 72 hours post infiltration and was estimated to proceed at an average rate of one cell being infected every three hours over an observation period of 17 hours. To determine if the secretory pathway were important for TuMV intercellular movement, chemical and protein inhibitors that blocked both early and late secretory pathways were used. Treatment with Brefeldin A or Concanamycin A or expression of ARF1 or RAB-E1d dominant negative mutants, all of which inhibit pre- or post-Golgi transport, reduced intercellular movement by the virus. These treatments, however, did not inhibit virus replication in primary infected cells. Pharmacological interference assays using Tyrphostin A23 or Wortmannin showed that endocytosis was not important for TuMV intercellular movement. Lack of co-localization by endocytosed FM4-64 and Ara7 (AtRabF2b) with TuMV-induced 6K₂-tagged vesicles further supported this conclusion. Microfilament depolymerizing drugs and silencing expression of myosin XI-2 gene, but not myosin VIII genes, also inhibited TuMV intercellular movement. Expression of dominant negative myosin mutants confirmed the role played by myosin XI-2 as well as by myosin XI-K in TuMV intercellular movement. Using this dual gene cassette expression system and transport inhibitors, components of the

  3. Expression and role of connexin-based gap junctions in pulmonary inflammatory diseases.

    PubMed

    Freund-Michel, Véronique; Muller, Bernard; Marthan, Roger; Savineau, Jean-Pierre; Guibert, Christelle

    2016-08-01

    Connexins are transmembrane proteins that can generate intercellular communication channels known as gap junctions. They contribute to the direct movement of ions and larger cytoplasmic solutes between various cell types. In the lung, connexins participate in a variety of physiological functions, such as tissue homeostasis and host defence. In addition, emerging evidence supports a role for connexins in various pulmonary inflammatory diseases, such as asthma, pulmonary hypertension, acute lung injury, lung fibrosis or cystic fibrosis. In these diseases, the altered expression of connexins leads to disruption of normal intercellular communication pathways, thus contributing to various pathophysiological aspects, such as inflammation or tissue altered reactivity and remodeling. The present review describes connexin structure and organization in gap junctions. It focuses on connexins in the lung, including pulmonary bronchial and arterial beds, by looking at their expression, regulation and physiological functions. This work also addresses the issue of connexin expression alteration in various pulmonary inflammatory diseases and describes how targeting connexin-based gap junctions with pharmacological tools, synthetic blocking peptides or genetic approaches, may open new therapeutic perspectives in the treatment of these diseases. PMID:27126473

  4. Effects of polar cortical cytoskeleton and unbalanced cortical surface tension on intercellular bridge thinning during cytokinesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Li; An, Mei-Wen; Li, Xiao-Na; Yang, Fang; Liu, Yang

    2011-12-01

    To probe the contributions of polar cortical cytoskeleton and the surface tension of daughter cells to intercellular bridge thinning dynamics during cytokinesis, we applied cytochalasin D (CD) or colchicine (COLC) in a highly localized manner to polar regions of dividing normal rat kidney (NRK) cells. We observed cellular morphological changes and analyzed the intercellular bridge thinning trajectories of dividing cells with different polar cortical characteristics. Global blebbistatin (BS) application was used to obtain cells losing active contractile force groups. Our results show that locally released CD or colchicine at the polar region caused inhibition of cytokinesis before ingression. Similar treatment at phases after ingression allowed completion of cytokinesis but dramatically influenced the trajectories of intercellular bridge thinning. Disturbing single polar cortical actin induced transformation of the intercellular bridge thinning process, and polar cortical tension controlled deformation time of intercellular bridges. Our study provides a feasible framework to induce and analyze the effects of local changes in mechanical properties of cellular components on single cellular cytokinesis.

  5. Intercellular ultrafast Ca2+ wave in vascular smooth muscle cells: numerical and experimental study

    PubMed Central

    Quijano, J. C.; Raynaud, F.; Nguyen, D.; Piacentini, N.; Meister, J. J.

    2016-01-01

    Vascular smooth muscle cells exhibit intercellular Ca2+ waves in response to local mechanical or KCl stimulation. Recently, a new type of intercellular Ca2+ wave was observed in vitro in a linear arrangement of smooth muscle cells. The intercellular wave was denominated ultrafast Ca2+ wave and it was suggested to be the result of the interplay between membrane potential and Ca2+ dynamics which depended on influx of extracellular Ca2+, cell membrane depolarization and its intercel- lular propagation. In the present study we measured experimentally the conduction velocity of the membrane depolarization and performed simulations of the ultrafast Ca2+ wave along coupled smooth muscle cells. Numerical results reproduced a wide spectrum of experimental observations, including Ca2+ wave velocity, electrotonic membrane depolarization along the network, effects of inhibitors and independence of the Ca2+ wave speed on the intracellular stores. The numerical data also provided new physiological insights suggesting ranges of crucial model parameters that may be altered experimentally and that could significantly affect wave kinetics allowing the modulation of the wave characteristics experimentally. Numerical and experimental results supported the hypothesis that the propagation of membrane depolarization acts as an intercellular messenger mediating intercellular ultrafast Ca2+ waves in smooth muscle cells. PMID:27507785

  6. Intercellular ultrafast Ca(2+) wave in vascular smooth muscle cells: numerical and experimental study.

    PubMed

    Quijano, J C; Raynaud, F; Nguyen, D; Piacentini, N; Meister, J J

    2016-01-01

    Vascular smooth muscle cells exhibit intercellular Ca(2+) waves in response to local mechanical or KCl stimulation. Recently, a new type of intercellular Ca(2+) wave was observed in vitro in a linear arrangement of smooth muscle cells. The intercellular wave was denominated ultrafast Ca(2+) wave and it was suggested to be the result of the interplay between membrane potential and Ca(2+) dynamics which depended on influx of extracellular Ca(2+), cell membrane depolarization and its intercel- lular propagation. In the present study we measured experimentally the conduction velocity of the membrane depolarization and performed simulations of the ultrafast Ca(2+) wave along coupled smooth muscle cells. Numerical results reproduced a wide spectrum of experimental observations, including Ca(2+) wave velocity, electrotonic membrane depolarization along the network, effects of inhibitors and independence of the Ca(2+) wave speed on the intracellular stores. The numerical data also provided new physiological insights suggesting ranges of crucial model parameters that may be altered experimentally and that could significantly affect wave kinetics allowing the modulation of the wave characteristics experimentally. Numerical and experimental results supported the hypothesis that the propagation of membrane depolarization acts as an intercellular messenger mediating intercellular ultrafast Ca(2+) waves in smooth muscle cells. PMID:27507785

  7. Low dose gamma irradiation enhances defined signaling components of intercellular reactive oxygen-mediated apoptosis induction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, G.

    2011-01-01

    Transformed cells are selectively removed by intercellular ROS-mediated induction of apoptosis. Signaling is based on the HOCl and the NO/peroxynitrite pathway (major pathways) and the nitryl chloride and the metal-catalyzed Haber-Weiss pathway (minor pathways). During tumor progression, resistance against intercellular induction of apoptosis is acquired through expression of membrane-associated catalase. Low dose radiation of nontransformed cells has been shown to enhance intercellular induction of apoptosis. The present study was performed to define the signaling components which are modulated by low dose gamma irradiation. Low dose radiation induced the release of peroxidase from nontransformed, transformed and tumor cells. Extracellular superoxide anion generation was strongly enhanced in the case of transformed cells and tumor cells, but not in nontransformed cells. Enhancement of peroxidase release and superoxide anion generation either increased intercellular induction of apoptosis of transformed cells, or caused a partial protection under specific signaling conditions. In tumor cells, low dose radiation enhanced the production of major signaling components, but this had no effect on apoptosis induction, due to the strong resistance mechanism of tumor cells. Our data specify the nature of low dose radiation-induced effects on specific signaling components of intercellular induction of apoptosis at defined stages of multistep carcinogenesis.

  8. Gap junction-mediated electrical transmission: regulatory mechanisms and plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Pereda, Alberto E.; Curti, Sebastian; Hoge, Gregory; Cachope, Roger; Flores, Carmen E.; Rash, John E.

    2012-01-01

    The term synapse applies to cellular specializations that articulate the processing of information within neural circuits by providing a mechanism for the transfer of information between two different neurons. There are two main modalities of synaptic transmission: chemical and electrical. While most efforts have been dedicated to the understanding of the properties and modifiability of chemical transmission, less is still known regarding the plastic properties of electrical synapses, whose structural correlate is the gap junction. A wealth of data indicates that, rather than passive intercellular channels, electrical synapses are more dynamic and modifiable than was generally perceived. This article will discuss the factors determining the strength of electrical transmission and review current evidence demonstrating its dynamic properties. Like their chemical counterparts, electrical synapses can also be plastic and modifiable. PMID:22659675

  9. Investigation of inelastic electron tunneling spectra of metal-molecule-metal junctions fabricated using direct metal transfer method

    SciTech Connect

    Jeong, Hyunhak; Hwang, Wang-Taek; Kim, Pilkwang; Kim, Dongku; Jang, Yeonsik; Min, Misook; Park, Yun Daniel; Lee, Takhee; Xiang, Dong; Song, Hyunwook; Jeong, Heejun

    2015-02-09

    We measured the inelastic electron tunneling spectroscopy (IETS) characteristics of metal-molecule-metal junctions made with alkanethiolate self-assembled monolayers. The molecular junctions were fabricated using a direct metal transfer method, which we previously reported for high-yield metal-molecule-metal junctions. The measured IETS data could be assigned to molecular vibration modes that were determined by the chemical structure of the molecules. We also observed discrepancies and device-to-device variations in the IETS data that possibly originate from defects in the molecular junctions and insulating walls introduced during the fabrication process and from the junction structure.

  10. Thermoelectric generator with hinged assembly for fins

    DOEpatents

    Purdy, David L.; Shapiro, Zalman M.; Hursen, Thomas F.; Maurer, Gerould W.

    1976-11-02

    A cylindrical casing has a central shielded capsule of radioisotope fuel. A plurality of thermonuclear modules are axially arranged with their hot junctions resiliently pressed toward the shield and with their cold junctions adjacent a transition member having fins radiating heat to the environment. For each module, the assembly of transition member and fins is hinged to the casing for swinging to permit access to and removal of such module. A ceramic plate having gold layers on opposite faces prevents diffusion bonding of the hot junction to the shield.

  11. Victory Junction Gang Camp

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shell, Ryan

    2007-01-01

    This article describes the Victory Junction Gang Camp, a not-for-profit, NASCAR-themed camp for children with chronic medical conditions that serves 24 different disease groups. The mission of the camp is to give children life-changing camping experiences that are exciting, fun, and empowering in a safe and medically sound environment. While doing…

  12. Josephson junction mixing.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thompson, E. D.

    1973-01-01

    A theory is presented which, though too simple to explain quantitative details in the Josephson junction mixing response, is sufficient for explaining qualitatively the results observed. Crucial to the theory presented, and that which differentiates it from earlier ones, is the inclusion of harmonic voltages across the ideal Josephson element.

  13. Squeezable electron tunneling junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreland, J.; Alexander, S.; Cox, M.; Sonnenfeld, R.; Hansma, P. K.

    1983-09-01

    We report a versatile new technique for constructing electron tunneling junctions with mechanically-adjusted artificial barriers. I-V curves are presented for tunneling between Ag electrodes with vacuum, gas, liquid or solid in the barrier. An energy gap is apparent in the measured I-V curve when tunneling occurs between superconducting Pb electrodes.

  14. Doped semiconductor nanocrystal junctions

    SciTech Connect

    Borowik, Ł.; Mélin, T.; Nguyen-Tran, T.; Roca i Cabarrocas, P.

    2013-11-28

    Semiconductor junctions are the basis of electronic and photovoltaic devices. Here, we investigate junctions formed from highly doped (N{sub D}≈10{sup 20}−10{sup 21}cm{sup −3}) silicon nanocrystals (NCs) in the 2–50 nm size range, using Kelvin probe force microscopy experiments with single charge sensitivity. We show that the charge transfer from doped NCs towards a two-dimensional layer experimentally follows a simple phenomenological law, corresponding to formation of an interface dipole linearly increasing with the NC diameter. This feature leads to analytically predictable junction properties down to quantum size regimes: NC depletion width independent of the NC size and varying as N{sub D}{sup −1/3}, and depleted charge linearly increasing with the NC diameter and varying as N{sub D}{sup 1/3}. We thus establish a “nanocrystal counterpart” of conventional semiconductor planar junctions, here however valid in regimes of strong electrostatic and quantum confinements.

  15. Automated array assembly, phase 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carbajal, B. G.

    1979-01-01

    Tasks of scaling up the tandem junction cell (TJC) from 2 cm x 2 cm to 6.2 cm and the assembly of several modules using these large area TJC's are described. The scale-up of the TJC was based on using the existing process and doing the necessary design activities to increase the cell area to an acceptably large area. The design was carried out using available device models. The design was verified and sample large area TJCs were fabricated. Mechanical and process problems occurred causing a schedule slippage that resulted in contract expiration before enough large-area TJCs were fabricated to populate the sample tandem junction modules (TJM). A TJM design was carried out in which the module interconnects served to augment the current collecting buses on the cell. No sample TJMs were assembled due to a shortage of large-area TJCs.

  16. Gap junctions between CA3 pyramidal cells contribute to network synchronization in neonatal hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Molchanova, Svetlana M; Huupponen, Johanna; Lauri, Sari E; Taira, Tomi

    2016-08-01

    Direct electrical coupling between neurons through gap junctions is prominent during development, when synaptic connectivity is scarce, providing the additional intercellular connectivity. However, functional studies of gap junctions are hampered by the unspecificity of pharmacological tools available. Here we have investigated gap-junctional coupling between CA3 pyramidal cells in neonatal hippocampus and its contribution to early network activity. Four different gap junction inhibitors, including the general blocker carbenoxolone, decreased the frequency of network activity bursts in CA3 area of hippocampus of P3-6 rats, suggesting the involvement of electrical connections in the generation of spontaneous network activity. In CA3 pyramidal cells, spikelets evoked by local stimulation of stratum oriens, were inhibited by carbenoxolone, but not by inhibitors of glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic transmission, signifying the presence of electrical connectivity through axo-axonic gap junctions. Carbenoxolone also decreased the success rate of firing antidromic action potentials in response to stimulation, and changed the pattern of spontaneous action potential firing of CA3 pyramidal cells. Altogether, these data suggest that electrical coupling of CA3 pyramidal cells contribute to the generation of the early network events in neonatal hippocampus by modulating their firing pattern and synchronization. PMID:26926429

  17. Zwitterionic pH/redox nanoparticles based on dextran as drug carriers for enhancing tumor intercellular uptake of doxorubicin.

    PubMed

    Wu, Luyan; Zhang, Liping; Shi, Gang; Ni, Caihua

    2016-04-01

    Zwitterionic nanoparticles have excellent serum stability. In this study, pH/redox responsive polymer was synthesized through a modification of dextran using succinic acid, followed by crosslinking with cystamine. The polymer could self-assemble into stable nanoparticles (NPs) in aqueous solution. The NPs carried certain amount of free carboxyl and amino groups on the surface, which endowed the NPs excellent anti-protein adsorption ability. The surface charge was negative at pH7.4 and was converted to positive at pH5.0. It was revealed that the NPs showed little non-specific protein adsorption and had excellent serum stability, and the NPs could be internalized in Hela cells rapidly. This result was ascribed to the charge reversible feature of the NPs. Doxorubicin (DOX) was loaded in the NPs for release studies in vitro. The DOX-loaded NPs exhibited obvious pH and reduction sensitivities in response to the environment in tumor cells due to the introduction of carboxyl groups, amino groups and disulfide bonds in the NPs. The NPs were biocompatible, biodegradable, and could be potentially applied as anticancer drug carriers for enhancement of tumor intercellular uptake of doxorubicin. PMID:26838851

  18. Wireless Josephson Junction Arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adams, Laura

    2015-03-01

    We report low temperature, microwave transmission measurements on a wireless two- dimensional network of Josephson junction arrays composed of superconductor-insulator -superconductor tunnel junctions. Unlike their biased counterparts, by removing all electrical contacts to the arrays and superfluous microwave components and interconnects in the transmission line, we observe new collective behavior in the transmission spectra. In particular we will show emergent behavior that systematically responds to changes in microwave power at fixed temperature. Likewise we will show the dynamic and collective response of the arrays while tuning the temperature at fixed microwave power. We discuss these spectra in terms of the Berezinskii-Kosterlitz-Thouless phase transition and Shapiro steps. We gratefully acknowledge the support Prof. Steven Anlage at the University of Maryland and Prof. Allen Goldman at the University of Minnesota. Physics and School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

  19. Holliday Junction Resolvases

    PubMed Central

    Wyatt, Haley D.M.; West, Stephen C.

    2014-01-01

    Four-way DNA intermediates, called Holliday junctions (HJs), can form during meiotic and mitotic recombination, and their removal is crucial for chromosome segregation. A group of ubiquitous and highly specialized structure-selective endonucleases catalyze the cleavage of HJs into two disconnected DNA duplexes in a reaction called HJ resolution. These enzymes, called HJ resolvases, have been identified in bacteria and their bacteriophages, archaea, and eukaryotes. In this review, we discuss fundamental aspects of the HJ structure and their interaction with junction-resolving enzymes. This is followed by a brief discussion of the eubacterial RuvABC enzymes, which provide the paradigm for HJ resolvases in other organisms. Finally, we review the biochemical and structural properties of some well-characterized resolvases from archaea, bacteriophage, and eukaryotes. PMID:25183833

  20. EXPOSURE OF CULTURED MYOCYTES TO ZINC RESULTS IN ALTERED BEAT RATE AND INTERCELLULAR COMMUNICATION.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Exposure of cultured myocytes to zinc results in altered beat rate and intercellular communication

    Graff, Donald W, Devlin, Robert B, Brackhan, Joseph A, Muller-Borer, Barbara J, Bowman, Jill S, Cascio, Wayne E.

    Exposure to ambient air pollution particulate matter (...

  1. Intercellular delay regulates the collective period of repressively coupled gene regulatory oscillator networks

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yongqiang; Hori, Yutaka; Hara, Shinji; Doyle, Francis J.

    2013-01-01

    Most biological rhythms are generated by a population of cellular oscillators coupled through intercellular signaling. Recent experimental evidence shows that the collective period may differ significantly from the autonomous period in the presence of intercellular delays. The phenomenon has been investigated using delay-coupled phase oscillators, but the proposed phase model contains no direct biological mechanism, which may weaken the model's reliability in unraveling biophysical principles. Based on a published gene regulatory oscillator model, we analyze the collective period of delay-coupled biological oscillators using the multivariable harmonic balance technique. We prove that, in contradiction to the common intuition that the collective period increases linearly with the coupling delay, the collective period turns out to be a periodic function of the intercellular delay. More surprisingly, the collective period may even decrease with the intercellular delay when the delay resides in certain regions. The collective period is given in a closed-form in terms of biochemical reaction constants and thus provides biological insights as well as guidance in synthetic-biological-oscillator design. Simulation results are given based on a segmentation clock model to confirm the theoretical predictions. PMID:25346544

  2. Miraculin, a taste-modifying protein is secreted into intercellular spaces in plant cells.

    PubMed

    Hirai, Tadayoshi; Sato, Mayuko; Toyooka, Kiminari; Sun, Hyeon-Jin; Yano, Megumu; Ezura, Hiroshi

    2010-02-15

    A taste-modifying protein, miraculin, is highly accumulated in ripe fruit of miracle fruit (Richadella dulcifica) and the content can reach up to 10% of the total soluble protein in these fruits. Although speculated for decades that miraculin is secreted into intercellular spaces in miracle fruit, no evidence exists of its cellular localization. To study the cellular localization of miraculin in plant cells, using miracle fruit and transgenic tomato that constitutively express miraculin, immunoelectron microscopy, imaging GFP fusion proteins, and immunological detection of secreted proteins in culture medium of transgenic tomato were carried out. Immunoelectron microscopy showed the specific accumulation of miraculin in the intercellular layers of both miracle fruit and transgenic tomato. Imaging GFP fusion protein demonstrated that the miraculin-GFP fusion protein was accumulated in the intercellular spaces of tomato epidermal cells. Immunological detection of secreted proteins in culture medium of transgenic tomato indicated that miraculin was secreted from the roots of transgenic tomato expressing miraculin. This study firstly showed the evidences of the intercellular localization of miraculin, and provided a new insight of biological roles of miraculin in plants. PMID:19712996

  3. Extracellular ultrathin fibers sensitive to intracellular reactive oxygen species: Formation of intercellular membrane bridges

    SciTech Connect

    Jung, Se-Hui; Park, Jin-Young; Joo, Jung-Hoon; Kim, Young-Myeong; Ha, Kwon-Soo

    2011-07-15

    Membrane bridges are key cellular structures involved in intercellular communication; however, dynamics for their formation are not well understood. We demonstrated the formation and regulation of novel extracellular ultrathin fibers in NIH3T3 cells using confocal and atomic force microscopy. At adjacent regions of neighboring cells, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) and glucose oxidase induced ultrathin fiber formation, which was prevented by Trolox, a reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger. The height of ROS-sensitive ultrathin fibers ranged from 2 to 4 nm. PMA-induced formation of ultrathin fibers was inhibited by cytochalasin D, but not by Taxol or colchicine, indicating that ultrathin fibers mainly comprise microfilaments. PMA-induced ultrathin fibers underwent dynamic structural changes, resulting in formation of intercellular membrane bridges. Thus, these fibers are formed by a mechanism(s) involving ROS and involved in formation of intercellular membrane bridges. Furthermore, ultrastructural imaging of ultrathin fibers may contribute to understanding the diverse mechanisms of cell-to-cell communication and the intercellular transfer of biomolecules, including proteins and cell organelles.

  4. Astrocyte-to-neuron intercellular prion transfer is mediated by cell-cell contact

    PubMed Central

    Victoria, Guiliana Soraya; Arkhipenko, Alexander; Zhu, Seng; Syan, Sylvie; Zurzolo, Chiara

    2016-01-01

    Prion diseases are caused by misfolding of the cellular protein PrPC to an infectious conformer, PrPSc. Intercellular PrPSc transfer propagates conversion and allows infectivity to move from the periphery to the brain. However, how prions spread between cells of the central nervous system is unclear. Astrocytes are specialized non-neuronal cells within the brain that have a number of functions indispensable for brain homeostasis. Interestingly, they are one of the earliest sites of prion accumulation in the brain. A fundamental question arising from this observation is whether these cells are involved in intercellular prion transfer and thereby disease propagation. Using co-culture systems between primary infected astrocytes and granule neurons or neuronal cell lines, we provide direct evidence that prion-infected astrocytes can disseminate prion to neurons. Though astrocytes are capable of secreting PrP, this is an inefficient method of transferring prion infectivity. Efficient transfer required co-culturing and direct cell contact. Astrocytes form numerous intercellular connections including tunneling nanotubes, containing PrPSc, often colocalized with endolysosomal vesicles, which may constitute the major mechanism of transfer. Because of their role in intercellular transfer of prions astrocytes may influence progression of the disease. PMID:26857744

  5. Intercellular Pectic Protuberances in Asplenium: New Data on their Composition and Origin

    PubMed Central

    Leroux, Olivier; Knox, J. Paul; Leroux, Frederic; Vrijdaghs, Alexander; Bellefroid, Elke; Borgonie, Gaëtan; Viane, Ronald L. L.

    2007-01-01

    Background and Aims Projections of cell wall material into the intercellular spaces between parenchymatic cells have been observed since the mid-19th century. Histochemical staining suggested that these intercellular protuberances are probably pectic in nature, but uncertainties about their origin, composition and biological function(s) have remained. Methods Using electron and light microscopy, including immunohistochemical methods, the structure and the presence of some major cell wall macromolecules in the intercellular pectic protuberances (IPPs) of the cortical parenchyma have been studied in a specimen of the Asplenium aethiopicum complex. Key Results IPPs contained pectic homogalacturonan, but no evidence for pectic rhamnogalacturonan-I or xylogalacturonan epitopes was obtained. Arabinogalactan-proteins and xylan were not detected in cell walls, middle lamellae or IPPs of the cortical parenchyma, whereas xyloglucan was only found in its cell walls. Extensin (hydroxyproline-rich glycoproteins) LM1 and JIM11 and JIM20 epitopes were detected specifically in IPPs but not in their adjacent cell walls or middle lamellae. Conclusions It is postulated that IPPs do not originate exclusively from the middle lamellae because extensins were only found in IPPs and not in surrounding cell walls, intercellular space linings or middle lamellae, and because IPPs and their adjacent cell walls are discontinuous. PMID:17881333

  6. Fractional order junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machado, J. Tenreiro

    2015-01-01

    Gottfried Leibniz generalized the derivation and integration, extending the operators from integer up to real, or even complex, orders. It is presently recognized that the resulting models capture long term memory effects difficult to describe by classical tools. Leon Chua generalized the set of lumped electrical elements that provide the building blocks in mathematical models. His proposal of the memristor and of higher order elements broadened the scope of variables and relationships embedded in the development of models. This paper follows the two directions and proposes a new logical step, by generalizing the concept of junction. Classical junctions interconnect system elements using simple algebraic restrictions. Nevertheless, this simplistic approach may be misleading in the presence of unexpected dynamical phenomena and requires including additional "parasitic" elements. The novel γ -junction includes, as special cases, the standard series and parallel connections and allows a new degree of freedom when building models. The proposal motivates the search for experimental and real world manifestations of the abstract conjectures.

  7. Thermoelectricity in molecular junctions.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Pramod; Jang, Sung-Yeon; Segalman, Rachel A; Majumdar, Arun

    2007-03-16

    By trapping molecules between two gold electrodes with a temperature difference across them, the junction Seebeck coefficients of 1,4-benzenedithiol (BDT), 4,4'-dibenzenedithiol, and 4,4''-tribenzenedithiol in contact with gold were measured at room temperature to be +8.7 +/- 2.1 microvolts per kelvin (muV/K), +12.9 +/- 2.2 muV/K, and +14.2 +/- 3.2 muV/K, respectively (where the error is the full width half maximum of the statistical distributions). The positive sign unambiguously indicates p-type (hole) conduction in these heterojunctions, whereas the Au Fermi level position for Au-BDT-Au junctions was identified to be 1.2 eV above the highest occupied molecular orbital level of BDT. The ability to study thermoelectricity in molecular junctions provides the opportunity to address these fundamental unanswered questions about their electronic structure and to begin exploring molecular thermoelectric energy conversion. PMID:17303718

  8. Stimulating the Release of Exosomes Increases the Intercellular Transfer of Prions.

    PubMed

    Guo, Belinda B; Bellingham, Shayne A; Hill, Andrew F

    2016-03-01

    Exosomes are small extracellular vesicles released by cells and play important roles in intercellular communication and pathogen transfer. Exosomes have been implicated in several neurodegenerative diseases, including prion disease and Alzheimer disease. Prion disease arises upon misfolding of the normal cellular prion protein, PrP(C), into the disease-associated isoform, PrP(Sc). The disease has a unique transmissible etiology, and exosomes represent a novel and efficient method for prion transmission. The precise mechanism by which prions are transmitted from cell to cell remains to be fully elucidated, although three hypotheses have been proposed: direct cell-cell contact, tunneling nanotubes, and exosomes. Given the reported presence of exosomes in biological fluids and in the lipid and nucleic acid contents of exosomes, these vesicles represent an ideal mechanism for encapsulating prions and potential cofactors to facilitate prion transmission. This study investigates the relationship between exosome release and intercellular prion dissemination. Stimulation of exosome release through treatment with an ionophore, monensin, revealed a corresponding increase in intercellular transfer of prion infectivity. Conversely, inhibition of exosome release using GW4869 to target the neutral sphingomyelinase pathway induced a decrease in intercellular prion transmission. Further examination of the effect of monensin on PrP conversion revealed that monensin also alters the conformational stability of PrP(C), leading to increased generation of proteinase K-resistant prion protein. The findings presented here provide support for a positive relationship between exosome release and intercellular transfer of prion infectivity, highlighting an integral role for exosomes in facilitating the unique transmissible nature of prions. PMID:26769968

  9. Spontaneous calcium signals induced by gap junctions in a network model of astrocytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazantsev, V. B.

    2009-01-01

    The dynamics of a network model of astrocytes coupled by gap junctions is investigated. Calcium dynamics of the single cell is described by the biophysical model comprising the set of three nonlinear differential equations. Intercellular dynamics is provided by the diffusion of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) through gap junctions between neighboring astrocytes. It is found that the diffusion induces the appearance of spontaneous activity patterns in the network. Stability of the network steady state is analyzed. It is proved that the increase of the diffusion coefficient above a certain critical value yields the generation of low-amplitude subthreshold oscillatory signals in a certain frequency range. It is shown that such spontaneous oscillations can facilitate calcium pulse generation and provide a certain time scale in astrocyte signaling.

  10. Regulation of gap junction channels by infectious agents and inflammation in the CNS

    PubMed Central

    Castellano, Paul; Eugenin, Eliseo A.

    2014-01-01

    Gap junctions (GJs) are conglomerates of intercellular channels that connect the cytoplasm of two or more cells, and facilitate the transfer of ions and small molecules, including second messengers, resulting in metabolic and electrical coordination. In general, loss of gap junctional communication (GJC) has been associated with cellular damage and inflammation resulting in compromise of physiological functions. Recently, it has become evident that GJ channels also play a critical role in the pathogenesis of infectious diseases and associated inflammation. Several pathogens use the transfer of intracellular signals through GJ channels to spread infection and toxic signals that amplify inflammation to neighboring cells. Thus, identification of the mechanisms by which several infectious agents alter GJC could result in new potential therapeutic approaches to reduce inflammation and their pathogenesis. PMID:24847208

  11. Cadherin controls nectin recruitment into adherens junctions by remodeling the actin cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Troyanovsky, Regina B.; Indra, Indrajyoti; Chen, Chi-Shuo; Hong, Soonjin; Troyanovsky, Sergey M.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT The mechanism that coordinates activities of different adhesion receptors is poorly understood. We investigated this mechanism by focusing on the nectin-2 and E-cadherin adherens junction receptors. We found that, cadherin was not required for the basic process of nectin junction formation because nectin-2 formed junctions in cadherin-deficient A431D cells. Formation of nectin-2 junctions in these cells, however, became regulated by cadherin as soon as E-cadherin was re-expressed. E-cadherin recruited nectin-2 into adherens junctions, where both proteins formed distinct but tightly associated clusters. Live-cell imaging showed that the appearance of E-cadherin clusters often preceded that of nectin-2 clusters at sites of junction assembly. Inactivation of E-cadherin clustering by different strategies concomitantly suppressed the formation of nectin clusters. Furthermore, cadherin significantly increased the stability of nectin clusters, thereby making them resistant to the BC-12 antibody, which targets the nectin-2 adhesion interface. By testing different E-cadherin–α-catenin chimeras, we showed that the recruitment of nectin into chimera junctions is mediated by the actin-binding domain of α-catenin. Our data suggests that E-cadherin regulates assembly of nectin junctions through α-catenin-induced remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton around the cadherin clusters. PMID:25395582

  12. Gap junction proteins and their role in spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Tonkin, Ryan S.; Mao, Yilin; O’Carroll, Simon J.; Nicholson, Louise F. B.; Green, Colin R.; Gorrie, Catherine A.; Moalem-Taylor, Gila

    2015-01-01

    Gap junctions are specialized intercellular communication channels that are formed by two hexameric connexin hemichannels, one provided by each of the two adjacent cells. Gap junctions and hemichannels play an important role in regulating cellular metabolism, signaling, and functions in both normal and pathological conditions. Following spinal cord injury (SCI), there is damage and disturbance to the neuronal elements of the spinal cord including severing of axon tracts and rapid cell death. The initial mechanical disruption is followed by multiple secondary cascades that cause further tissue loss and dysfunction. Recent studies have implicated connexin proteins as playing a critical role in the secondary phase of SCI by propagating death signals through extensive glial networks. In this review, we bring together past and current studies to outline the distribution, changes and roles of various connexins found in neurons and glial cells, before and in response to SCI. We discuss the contribution of pathologically activated connexin proteins, in particular connexin 43, to functional recovery and neuropathic pain, as well as providing an update on potential connexin specific pharmacological agents to treat SCI. PMID:25610368

  13. Effects of formaldehyde inhalation on the junctional proteins of nasal respiratory mucosa of rats.

    PubMed

    Arican, R Yavuz; Sahin, Zeliha; Ustunel, Ismail; Sarikcioglu, Levent; Ozdem, Sadi; Oguz, Nurettin

    2009-07-01

    Exposure to formaldehyde, which is an organic compound, disturbs the integrity of nasal mucosa. In this study, we aimed to clarify the protein changes in the junctional complex of nasal mucosa of Wistar rats exposed to formaldehyde inhalation. The study was performed in 20 female Wistar rats. Rats were divided into two groups randomly. Control rats were allowed free access to standard rat chaw and tap water (n:10). Experimental group was exposed to formaldehyde vapor at 15ppm, 6h/day, 5 days/week for 12 weeks (n:10). Histological evaluation of the experimental model was determined by hematoxylin-eosin (HE) and periodic acid Schiff (PAS) stainings of paraffin-embedded nasal mucosa tissues and by electron microscopy. The effects of formaldehyde inhalation on the distribution of occludin, E-cadherin, and gamma-catenin were assessed by immunohistochemistry. The nasal mucosa of the experimental group was correlated with hypertrophy in goblet cell, degeneration in basal lamina, stratification of epithelium, and proliferation. Thickness of basal lamina and also local degenerative regions, vacuole increase in cytoplasmic areas, irregular forms of kinocilium and loss of sharpness in the kinocilium membrane were the findings at the ultrastructural level. The expressions of E-cadherin, occludin, gamma-catenin proteins in intercellular junctional complexes of rat nasal mucosa were also decreased in experimental group compared to control group. The findings of the present study indicated that formaldehyde vapor inhalation in the concentrations and duration of exposure used in the present experiment significantly decreased the density of structural proteins of the junctional complex in the nasoepithelium. It was suggested that, the formaldehyde inhalation could cause complete impairment of intercellular junctional complexes and disturb the tissue integrity in nasal mucosa at higher concentrations. PMID:18996001

  14. Signatures of topological Josephson junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Yang; Pientka, Falko; Berg, Erez; Oreg, Yuval; von Oppen, Felix

    2016-08-01

    Quasiparticle poisoning and diabatic transitions may significantly narrow the window for the experimental observation of the 4 π -periodic dc Josephson effect predicted for topological Josephson junctions. Here, we show that switching-current measurements provide accessible and robust signatures for topological superconductivity which persist in the presence of quasiparticle poisoning processes. Such measurements provide access to the phase-dependent subgap spectrum and Josephson currents of the topological junction when incorporating it into an asymmetric SQUID together with a conventional Josephson junction with large critical current. We also argue that pump-probe experiments with multiple current pulses can be used to measure the quasiparticle poisoning rates of the topological junction. The proposed signatures are particularly robust, even in the presence of Zeeman fields and spin-orbit coupling, when focusing on short Josephson junctions. Finally, we also consider microwave excitations of short topological Josephson junctions which may complement switching-current measurements.

  15. An induced junction photovoltaic cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Call, R. L.

    1974-01-01

    Silicon solar cells operating with induced junctions rather than diffused junctions have been fabricated and tested. Induced junctions were created by forming an inversion layer near the surface of the silicon by supplying a sheet of positive charge above the surface. Measurements of the response of the inversion layer cell to light of different wavelengths indicated it to be more sensitive to the shorter wavelengths of the sun's spectrum than conventional cells. The greater sensitivity occurs because of the shallow junction and the strong electric field at the surface.

  16. Josephson junction simulation of neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crotty, Patrick; Schult, Dan; Segall, Ken

    2010-07-01

    With the goal of understanding the intricate behavior and dynamics of collections of neurons, we present superconducting circuits containing Josephson junctions that model biologically realistic neurons. These “Josephson junction neurons” reproduce many characteristic behaviors of biological neurons such as action potentials, refractory periods, and firing thresholds. They can be coupled together in ways that mimic electrical and chemical synapses. Using existing fabrication technologies, large interconnected networks of Josephson junction neurons would operate fully in parallel. They would be orders of magnitude faster than both traditional computer simulations and biological neural networks. Josephson junction neurons provide a new tool for exploring long-term large-scale dynamics for networks of neurons.

  17. Gap junction blockage promotes cadmium-induced apoptosis in BRL 3A derived from Buffalo rat liver cells

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Di; Zou, Hui; Han, Tao; Xie, Junze; Dai, Nannan; Zhuo, Liling; Gu, Jianhong; Bian, Jianchun; Yuan, Yan; Liu, Xuezhong

    2016-01-01

    Gap junctions mediate direct communication between cells; however, toxicological cascade triggered by nonessential metals can abrogate cellular signaling mediated by gap junctions. Although cadmium (Cd) is known to induce apoptosis in organs and tissues, the mechanisms that underlie gap junction activity in Cd-induced apoptosis in BRL 3A rat liver cells has yet to be established. In this study, we showed that Cd treatment decreased the cell index (a measure of cellular electrical impedance) in BRL 3A cells. Mechanistically, we found that Cd exposure decreased expression of connexin 43 (Cx43), increased expression of p-Cx43 and elevated intracellular free Ca2+ concentration, corresponding to a decrease in gap junctional intercellular communication. Gap junction blockage pretreatment with 18β-glycyrrhizic acid (GA) promoted Cd-induced apoptosis, involving changes in expression of Bax, Bcl-2, caspase-3 and the mitochondrial transmembrane electrical potential (Δψm). Additionally, GA was found to enhance ERK and p38 activation during Cd-induced activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases, but had no significant effect on JNK activation. Our results indicated the apoptosis-related proteins and the ERK and p38 signaling pathways may participate in gap junction blockage promoting Cd-induced apoptosis in BRL 3A cells. PMID:27051341

  18. Rapid remodeling of tight junctions during paracellular diapedesis in a human model of the blood-brain barrier.

    PubMed

    Winger, Ryan C; Koblinski, Jennifer E; Kanda, Takashi; Ransohoff, Richard M; Muller, William A

    2014-09-01

    Leukocyte transendothelial migration (TEM; diapedesis) is a critical event in immune surveillance and inflammation. Most TEM occurs at endothelial cell borders (paracellular). However, there is indirect evidence to suggest that, at the tight junctions of the blood-brain barrier (BBB), leukocytes migrate directly through the endothelial cell body (transcellular). Why leukocytes migrate through the endothelial cell body rather than the cell borders is unknown. To test the hypothesis that the tightness of endothelial cell junctions influences the pathway of diapedesis, we developed an in vitro model of the BBB that possessed 10-fold higher electrical resistance than standard culture conditions and strongly expressed the BBB tight junction proteins claudin-5 and claudin-3. We found that paracellular TEM was still the predominant pathway (≥98%) and TEM was dependent on PECAM-1 and CD99. We show that endothelial tight junctions expressing claudin-5 are dynamic and undergo rapid remodeling during TEM. Membrane from the endothelial lateral border recycling compartment is mobilized to the exact site of tight junction remodeling. This preserves the endothelial barrier by sealing the intercellular gaps with membrane and engaging the migrating leukocyte with unligated adhesion molecules (PECAM-1 and CD99) as it crosses the cell border. These findings provide new insights into leukocyte-endothelial interactions at the BBB and suggest that tight junctions are more dynamic than previously appreciated. PMID:25063869

  19. RPTPα controls epithelial adherens junctions, linking E-cadherin engagement to c-Src-mediated phosphorylation of cortactin.

    PubMed

    Truffi, Marta; Dubreuil, Véronique; Liang, Xuan; Vacaresse, Nathalie; Nigon, Fabienne; Han, Siew Ping; Yap, Alpha S; Gomez, Guillermo A; Sap, Jan

    2014-06-01

    Epithelial junctions are fundamental determinants of tissue organization, subject to regulation by tyrosine phosphorylation. Homophilic binding of E-cadherin activates tyrosine kinases, such as Src, that control junctional integrity. Protein tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs) also contribute to cadherin-based adhesion and signaling, but little is known about their specific identity or functions at epithelial junctions. Here, we report that the receptor PTP RPTPα (human gene name PTPRA) is recruited to epithelial adherens junctions at the time of cell-cell contact, where it is in molecular proximity to E-cadherin. RPTPα is required for appropriate cadherin-dependent adhesion and for cyst architecture in three-dimensional culture. Loss of RPTPα impairs adherens junction integrity, as manifested by defective E-cadherin accumulation and peri-junctional F-actin density. These effects correlate with a role for RPTPα in cellular (c)-Src activation at sites of E-cadherin engagement. Mechanistically, RPTPα is required for appropriate tyrosine phosphorylation of cortactin, a major Src substrate and a cytoskeletal actin organizer. Expression of a phosphomimetic cortactin mutant in RPTPα-depleted cells partially rescues F-actin and E-cadherin accumulation at intercellular contacts. These findings indicate that RPTPα controls cadherin-mediated signaling by linking homophilic E-cadherin engagement to cortactin tyrosine phosphorylation through c-Src. PMID:24652832

  20. GUARD RING SEMICONDUCTOR JUNCTION

    DOEpatents

    Goulding, F.S.; Hansen, W.L.

    1963-12-01

    A semiconductor diode having a very low noise characteristic when used under reverse bias is described. Surface leakage currents, which in conventional diodes greatly contribute to noise, are prevented from mixing with the desired signal currents. A p-n junction is formed with a thin layer of heavily doped semiconductor material disposed on a lightly doped, physically thick base material. An annular groove cuts through the thin layer and into the base for a short distance, dividing the thin layer into a peripheral guard ring that encircles the central region. Noise signal currents are shunted through the guard ring, leaving the central region free from such currents. (AEC)

  1. Neuromuscular junction disorders.

    PubMed

    Verschuuren, Jan; Strijbos, Ellen; Vincent, Angela

    2016-01-01

    Diseases of the neuromuscular junction comprise a wide range of disorders. Antibodies, genetic mutations, specific drugs or toxins interfere with the number or function of one of the essential proteins that control signaling between the presynaptic nerve ending and the postsynaptic muscle membrane. Acquired autoimmune disorders of the neuromuscular junction are the most common and are described here. In myasthenia gravis, antibodies to acetylcholine receptors or to proteins involved in receptor clustering, particularly muscle-specific kinase, cause direct loss of acetylcholine receptors or interfere with the agrin-induced acetylcholine receptor clustering necessary for efficient neurotransmission. In the Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome (LEMS), loss of the presynaptic voltage-gated calcium channels results in reduced release of the acetylcholine transmitter. The conditions are generally recognizable clinically and the diagnosis confirmed by serologic testing and electromyography. Screening for thymomas in myasthenia or small cell cancer in LEMS is important. Fortunately, a wide range of symptomatic treatments, immunosuppressive drugs, or other immunomodulating therapies is available. Future research is directed to understanding the pathogenesis, discovering new antigens, and trying to develop disease-specific treatments. PMID:27112691

  2. Tight Junctions Go Viral!

    PubMed Central

    Torres-Flores, Jesús M.; Arias, Carlos F.

    2015-01-01

    Tight junctions (TJs) are highly specialized membrane domains involved in many important cellular processes such as the regulation of the passage of ions and macromolecules across the paracellular space and the establishment of cell polarity in epithelial cells. Over the past few years there has been increasing evidence that different components of the TJs can be hijacked by viruses in order to complete their infectious cycle. Viruses from at least nine different families of DNA and RNA viruses have been reported to use TJ proteins in their benefit. For example, TJ proteins such as JAM-A or some members of the claudin family of proteins are used by members of the Reoviridae family and hepatitis C virus as receptors or co-receptors during their entry into their host cells. Reovirus, in addition, takes advantage of the TJ protein Junction Adhesion Molecule-A (JAM-A) to achieve its hematogenous dissemination. Some other viruses are capable of regulating the expression or the localization of TJ proteins to induce cell transformation or to improve the efficiency of their exit process. This review encompasses the importance of TJs for viral entry, replication, dissemination, and egress, and makes a clear statement of the importance of studying these proteins to gain a better understanding of the replication strategies used by viruses that infect epithelial and/or endothelial cells. PMID:26404354

  3. Development and fabrication of a solar cell junction processing system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bunker, S.

    1981-01-01

    A solar cell junction processing system was developed and fabricated. A pulsed electron beam for the four inch wafers is being assembled and tested, wafers were successfully pulsed, and solar cells fabricated. Assembly of the transport locks is completed. The transport was operated successfully but not with sufficient reproducibility. An experiment test facility to examine potential scaleup problems associated with the proposed ion implanter design was constructed and operated. Cells were implanted and found to have efficiency identical to the normal Spire implant process.

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

    PubMed Central

    Palatinus, Joseph A.; Gourdie, Robert G.

    2016-01-01

    Diabetic patients develop larger myocardial infarctions and have an increased risk of death following a heart attack. The poor response to myocardial injury in the diabetic heart is likely related to the many metabolic derangements from diabetes that create a poor substrate in general for wound healing, response to injury and infection. Studies in rodents have implicated a role for the gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) in regulating the injury response in diabetic skin wounds. In this study, we sought to determine whether diabetes alters Cx43 molecular interactions or intracellular communication in the cryoinjured STZ type I diabetic mouse heart. We found that epicardial cryoinjury size is increased in diabetic mice and this increase is prevented by preinjury insulin administration. Consistent with these findings, we found that intercellular coupling via gap junctions is decreased after insulin administration in diabetic and nondiabetic mice. This decrease in coupling is associated with a concomitant increase in phosphorylation of Cx43 at serine 368, a residue known to decrease channel conductance. Taken together, our results suggest that insulin regulates both gap junction-mediated intercellular communication and injury propagation in the mouse heart. PMID:27034963

  5. Cell Junction Pathology of Neural Stem Cells Is Associated With Ventricular Zone Disruption, Hydrocephalus, and Abnormal Neurogenesis.

    PubMed

    Guerra, María Montserrat; Henzi, Roberto; Ortloff, Alexander; Lichtin, Nicole; Vío, Karin; Jiménez, Antonio J; Dominguez-Pinos, María Dolores; González, César; Jara, Maria Clara; Hinostroza, Fernando; Rodríguez, Sara; Jara, Maryoris; Ortega, Eduardo; Guerra, Francisco; Sival, Deborah A; den Dunnen, Wilfred F A; Pérez-Fígares, José M; McAllister, James P; Johanson, Conrad E; Rodríguez, Esteban M

    2015-07-01

    Fetal-onset hydrocephalus affects 1 to 3 per 1,000 live births. It is not only a disorder of cerebrospinal fluid dynamics but also a brain disorder that corrective surgery does not ameliorate. We hypothesized that cell junction abnormalities of neural stem cells (NSCs) lead to the inseparable phenomena of fetal-onset hydrocephalus and abnormal neurogenesis. We used bromodeoxyuridine labeling, immunocytochemistry, electron microscopy, and cell culture to study the telencephalon of hydrocephalic HTx rats and correlated our findings with those in human hydrocephalic and nonhydrocephalic human fetal brains (n = 12 each). Our results suggest that abnormal expression of the intercellular junction proteins N-cadherin and connexin-43 in NSC leads to 1) disruption of the ventricular and subventricular zones, loss of NSCs and neural progenitor cells; and 2) abnormalities in neurogenesis such as periventricular heterotopias and abnormal neuroblast migration. In HTx rats, the disrupted NSC and progenitor cells are shed into the cerebrospinal fluid and can be grown into neurospheres that display intercellular junction abnormalities similar to those of NSC of the disrupted ventricular zone; nevertheless, they maintain their potential for differentiating into neurons and glia. These NSCs can be used to investigate cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying this condition, thereby opening the avenue for stem cell therapy. PMID:26079447

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

    PubMed

    Palatinus, Joseph A; Gourdie, Robert G

    2016-01-01

    Diabetic patients develop larger myocardial infarctions and have an increased risk of death following a heart attack. The poor response to myocardial injury in the diabetic heart is likely related to the many metabolic derangements from diabetes that create a poor substrate in general for wound healing, response to injury and infection. Studies in rodents have implicated a role for the gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) in regulating the injury response in diabetic skin wounds. In this study, we sought to determine whether diabetes alters Cx43 molecular interactions or intracellular communication in the cryoinjured STZ type I diabetic mouse heart. We found that epicardial cryoinjury size is increased in diabetic mice and this increase is prevented by preinjury insulin administration. Consistent with these findings, we found that intercellular coupling via gap junctions is decreased after insulin administration in diabetic and nondiabetic mice. This decrease in coupling is associated with a concomitant increase in phosphorylation of Cx43 at serine 368, a residue known to decrease channel conductance. Taken together, our results suggest that insulin regulates both gap junction-mediated intercellular communication and injury propagation in the mouse heart. PMID:27034963

  7. Intercellular ice propagation: experimental evidence for ice growth through membrane pores.

    PubMed

    Acker, J P; Elliott, J A; McGann, L E

    2001-09-01

    Propagation of intracellular ice between cells significantly increases the prevalence of intracellular ice in confluent monolayers and tissues. It has been proposed that gap junctions facilitate ice propagation between cells. This study develops an equation for capillary freezing-point depression to determine the effect of temperature on the equilibrium radius of an ice crystal sufficiently small to grow through gap junctions. Convection cryomicroscopy and video image analysis were used to examine the incidence and pattern of intracellular ice formation (IIF) in the confluent monolayers of cell lines that do (MDCK) and do not (V-79W) form gap junctions. The effect of gap junctions on intracellular ice propagation was strongly temperature-dependent. For cells with gap junctions, IIF occurred in a directed wave-like pattern in 100% of the cells below -3 degrees C. At temperatures above -3 degrees C, there was a marked drop in the incidence of IIF, with isolated individual cells initially freezing randomly throughout the sample. This random pattern of IIF was also observed in the V-79W monolayers and in MDCK monolayers treated to prevent gap junction formation. The significant change in the low temperature behavior of confluent MDCK monolayers at -3 degrees C is likely the result of the inhibition of gap junction-facilitated ice propagation, and supports the theory that gap junctions facilitate ice nucleation between cells. PMID:11509353

  8. Chemical control over the energy-level alignment in a two-terminal junction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, Li; Franco, Carlos; Crivillers, Núria; Mas-Torrent, Marta; Cao, Liang; Sangeeth, C. S. Suchand; Rovira, Concepció; Veciana, Jaume; Nijhuis, Christian A.

    2016-07-01

    The energy-level alignment of molecular transistors can be controlled by external gating to move molecular orbitals with respect to the Fermi levels of the source and drain electrodes. Two-terminal molecular tunnelling junctions, however, lack a gate electrode and suffer from Fermi-level pinning, making it difficult to control the energy-level alignment of the system. Here we report an enhancement of 2 orders of magnitude of the tunnelling current in a two-terminal junction via chemical molecular orbital control, changing chemically the molecular component between a stable radical and its non-radical form without altering the supramolecular structure of the junction. Our findings demonstrate that the energy-level alignment in self-assembled monolayer-based junctions can be regulated by purely chemical modifications, which seems an attractive alternative to control the electrical properties of two-terminal junctions.

  9. Chemical control over the energy-level alignment in a two-terminal junction

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Li; Franco, Carlos; Crivillers, Núria; Mas-Torrent, Marta; Cao, Liang; Sangeeth, C. S. Suchand; Rovira, Concepció; Veciana, Jaume; Nijhuis, Christian A.

    2016-01-01

    The energy-level alignment of molecular transistors can be controlled by external gating to move molecular orbitals with respect to the Fermi levels of the source and drain electrodes. Two-terminal molecular tunnelling junctions, however, lack a gate electrode and suffer from Fermi-level pinning, making it difficult to control the energy-level alignment of the system. Here we report an enhancement of 2 orders of magnitude of the tunnelling current in a two-terminal junction via chemical molecular orbital control, changing chemically the molecular component between a stable radical and its non-radical form without altering the supramolecular structure of the junction. Our findings demonstrate that the energy-level alignment in self-assembled monolayer-based junctions can be regulated by purely chemical modifications, which seems an attractive alternative to control the electrical properties of two-terminal junctions. PMID:27456200

  10. Formin-mediated actin polymerization at endothelial junctions is required for vessel lumen formation and stabilization.

    PubMed

    Phng, Li-Kun; Gebala, Véronique; Bentley, Katie; Philippides, Andrew; Wacker, Andrin; Mathivet, Thomas; Sauteur, Loïc; Stanchi, Fabio; Belting, Heinz-Georg; Affolter, Markus; Gerhardt, Holger

    2015-01-12

    During blood vessel formation, endothelial cells (ECs) establish cell-cell junctions and rearrange to form multicellular tubes. Here, we show that during lumen formation, the actin nucleator and elongation factor, formin-like 3 (fmnl3), localizes to EC junctions, where filamentous actin (F-actin) cables assemble. Fluorescent actin reporters and fluorescence recovery after photobleaching experiments in zebrafish embryos identified a pool of dynamic F-actin with high turnover at EC junctions in vessels. Knockdown of fmnl3 expression, chemical inhibition of formin function, and expression of dominant-negative fmnl3 revealed that formin activity maintains a stable F-actin content at EC junctions by continual polymerization of F-actin cables. Reduced actin polymerization leads to destabilized endothelial junctions and consequently to failure in blood vessel lumenization and lumen instability. Our findings highlight the importance of formin activity in blood vessel morphogenesis. PMID:25584798

  11. Chemical control over the energy-level alignment in a two-terminal junction.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Li; Franco, Carlos; Crivillers, Núria; Mas-Torrent, Marta; Cao, Liang; Sangeeth, C S Suchand; Rovira, Concepció; Veciana, Jaume; Nijhuis, Christian A

    2016-01-01

    The energy-level alignment of molecular transistors can be controlled by external gating to move molecular orbitals with respect to the Fermi levels of the source and drain electrodes. Two-terminal molecular tunnelling junctions, however, lack a gate electrode and suffer from Fermi-level pinning, making it difficult to control the energy-level alignment of the system. Here we report an enhancement of 2 orders of magnitude of the tunnelling current in a two-terminal junction via chemical molecular orbital control, changing chemically the molecular component between a stable radical and its non-radical form without altering the supramolecular structure of the junction. Our findings demonstrate that the energy-level alignment in self-assembled monolayer-based junctions can be regulated by purely chemical modifications, which seems an attractive alternative to control the electrical properties of two-terminal junctions. PMID:27456200

  12. Exosomes: vehicles of intercellular signaling, biomarkers, and vectors of cell therapy.

    PubMed

    Kourembanas, Stella

    2015-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), whose mechanism of action is predominantly paracrine, are being widely tested for the treatment of a variety of human diseases. No one factor has been proven sufficient to mediate the therapeutic effects of MSCs. However, exosomes--membrane vesicles secreted by many cells, including MSCs--are appealing candidates as vectors of their efficacy. Exosomes can transport and deliver a large cargo of proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids and can modify cell and organ function. In addition to their key role as vehicles of intercellular communication, exosomes are increasingly recognized as biomarkers and prognosticators of disease. Moreover, they have the potential to be used as vehicles of gene and drug delivery for clinical application. This article reviews the biogenesis of exosomes, their molecular composition, and their role as messengers of intercellular communication, focusing on their potential as therapeutic vectors for stem cell therapy. PMID:25293529

  13. Intercellular adhesion molecule 1: recent findings and new concepts involved in mammalian spermatogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Mruk, Dolores D.; Xiao, Xiang; Lydka, Marta; Li, Michelle W.M.; Bilinska, Barbara; Cheng, C. Yan

    2013-01-01

    Spermatogenesis, the process of spermatozoa production, is regulated by several endocrine factors, including testosterone, follicle stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone and estradiol 17β. For spermatogenesis to reach completion, developing germ cells must traverse the seminiferous epithelium while remaining transiently attached to Sertoli cells. If germ cell adhesion were to be compromised for a period of time longer than usual, germ cells would slough the seminiferous epithelium and infertility would result. Presently, Sertoli-germ cell adhesion is known to be mediated largely by classical and desmosomal cadherins. More recent studies, however, have begun to expand long-standing concepts and to examine the roles of other proteins such as intercellular adhesion molecules. In this review, we focus on the biology of intercellular adhesion molecules in the mammalian testis, hoping that this information is useful in the design of future studies. PMID:23942142

  14. Detection of cancerous kidney tissue areas by means of infrared spectroscopy of intercellular fluid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urboniene, V.; Jankevicius, F.; Zelvys, A.; Steiner, G.; Sablinskas, V.

    2014-03-01

    In this work the infrared absorption spectra of intercellular fluid of normal and tumor kidney tissue were recorded and analyzed. The samples were prepared by stamping freshly resected tissue onto a CaF2 substrate. FT-IR spectra obtained from intracellular fluid of tumor tissue exhibit stronger absorption bands in the spectral region from 1000-1200 cm-1 and around 1750 cm-1 than those obtained from normal tissue. It is likely the spectra of extracellular matrix of kidney tumor tissue with large increases in the intensities of these bands represent a higher concentration of fatty acids and glycerol. Amide I and amide II bands are stronger in spectra of normal tissue indicating a higher level of proteins. The results demonstrate that FT-IR spectroscopy of intercellular fluids is a novel approach for a quick diagnosis during surgical resection, which can improve the therapy of kidney tumors.

  15. Markedly diminished epidermal keratinocyte expression of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) in Sezary syndrome

    SciTech Connect

    Nickoloff, B.J.; Griffiths, E.M.; Baadsgaard, O.; Voorhees, J.J.; Hanson, C.A.; Cooper, K.D. )

    1989-04-21

    In mucosis fungoides the malignant T cells express lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1, which allows them to bind to epidermal keratinocytes expressing the gamma interferon-inducible intercellular adhesion molecule-1. In this report, a patient with leukemic-stage mucosis fungoides (Sezary syndrome) had widespread erythematous dermal infiltrates containing malignant T cells, but without any epidermotropism. The authors discovered that the T cells expressed normal amounts of functional lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1, but the keratinocytes did not express significant levels of intercellular adhesion molecule-1, which was probably due to the inability of the malignant T cells to produce gamma interferon. These results support the concept that the inability of malignant T cells to enter the epidermis may contribute to emergence of more clinically aggressive T-cell clones that are no longer confined to the skin, but infiltrate the blood, lymph nodes, and viscera, as is seen in Sezary syndrome.

  16. An EMMPRIN-γ-catenin-Nm23 complex drives ATP production and actomyosin contractility at endothelial junctions.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Vanessa; Gonzalo, Pilar; Gómez-Escudero, Jesús; Pollán, Ángela; Acín-Pérez, Rebeca; Breckenridge, Mark; Yáñez-Mó, María; Barreiro, Olga; Orsenigo, Fabrizio; Kadomatsu, Kenji; Chen, Christopher S; Enríquez, José A; Dejana, Elisabetta; Sánchez-Madrid, Francisco; Arroyo, Alicia G

    2014-09-01

    Cell-cell adhesions are important sites through which cells experience and resist forces. In endothelial cells, these forces regulate junction dynamics and determine endothelial barrier strength. We identify the Ig superfamily member EMMPRIN (also known as basigin) as a coordinator of forces at endothelial junctions. EMMPRIN localization at junctions correlates with endothelial junction strength in different mouse vascular beds. Accordingly, EMMPRIN-deficient mice show altered junctions and increased junction permeability. Lack of EMMPRIN alters the localization and function of VE-cadherin (also known as cadherin-5) by decreasing both actomyosin contractility and tugging forces at endothelial cell junctions. EMMPRIN ensures proper actomyosin-driven maturation of competent endothelial junctions by forming a molecular complex with γ-catenin (also known as junction plakoglobin) and Nm23 (also known as NME1), a nucleoside diphosphate kinase, thereby locally providing ATP to fuel the actomyosin machinery. These results provide a novel mechanism for the regulation of actomyosin contractility at endothelial junctions and might have broader implications in biological contexts such as angiogenesis, collective migration and tissue morphogenesis by coupling compartmentalized energy production to junction assembly. PMID:24994937

  17. Association between two single base polymorphisms of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 gene and inflammatory bowel disease

    PubMed Central

    Habibi, Manijeh; Naderi, Nosratllah; Farnood, Alma; Balaii, Hedieh; Dadaei, Tahereh; Almasi, Shohreh; Zojaji, Homayoun; Asadzadeh Aghdae, Hamid; Zali, Mohammad Reza

    2016-01-01

    Aim: The present study evaluated the association between G241R and K469E polymorphisms of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 gene and inflammatory bowel disease in Iranian population. Background: Inflammatory bowel disease including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, is a chronic idiopathic inflammatory disease of the gastrointestinal tract. There are two single base polymorphisms of intercellular adhesion molecule 1gene, G241R and K469E, reported to be associated with inflammatory disorders. Patients and methods: In this case-control study, 156 inflammatory bowel disease patients (110 ulcerative colitis and 46 Crohn’s disease patients) and 131 healthy controls were enrolled. Two polymorphisms of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 gene, including G241R and K469E, were assessed by polymerase chain reaction followed by restriction fragment length polymorphism. Results: The E469 allele of K469E polymorphism was significantly more frequent in Crohn’s disease patients compared to controls (P< 0.05, OR= 1.83; 95% CI: 1.13 to 2.96). The mutant homozygote genotype of K469E polymorphism (E/E) was also significantly more frequent in Crohn’s disease patients compared to controls (P< 0.05, OR= 4.23; 95% CI: 1.42 to 12.59). No difference was observed in the frequency of K469E polymorphism among ulcerative colitis patients compared to controls. There were no significant differences in genotype and allele frequencies of G241R polymorphism among ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease patients compared to control subjects. Conclusion: According to our findings, K469E polymorphism of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 gene may probably participate in the pathogenesis of Crohn’s disease in Iran. PMID:27099667

  18. Abrogation of Junctional Adhesion Molecule-A Expression Induces Cell Apoptosis and Reduces Breast Cancer Progression

    PubMed Central

    Murakami, Masato; Giampietro, Costanza; Giannotta, Monica; Corada, Monica; Torselli, Ilaria; Orsenigo, Fabrizio; Cocito, Andrea; d'Ario, Giovanni; Mazzarol, Giovanni; Confalonieri, Stefano; Di Fiore, Pier Paolo; Dejana, Elisabetta

    2011-01-01

    Intercellular junctions promote homotypic cell to cell adhesion and transfer intracellular signals which control cell growth and apoptosis. Junctional adhesion molecule-A (JAM-A) is a transmembrane immunoglobulin located at tight junctions of normal epithelial cells of mammary ducts and glands. In the present paper we show that JAM-A acts as a survival factor for mammary carcinoma cells. JAM-A null mice expressing Polyoma Middle T under MMTV promoter develop significantly smaller mammary tumors than JAM-A positive mice. Angiogenesis and inflammatory or immune infiltrate were not statistically modified in absence of JAM-A but tumor cell apoptosis was significantly increased. Tumor cells isolated from JAM-A null mice or 4T1 cells incubated with JAM-A blocking antibodies showed reduced growth and increased apoptosis which paralleled altered junctional architecture and adhesive function. In a breast cancer clinical data set, tissue microarray data show that JAM-A expression correlates with poor prognosis. Gene expression analysis of mouse tumor samples showed a correlation between genes enriched in human G3 tumors and genes over expressed in JAM-A +/+ mammary tumors. Conversely, genes enriched in G1 human tumors correlate with genes overexpressed in JAM-A−/− tumors. We conclude that down regulation of JAM-A reduces tumor aggressive behavior by increasing cell susceptibility to apoptosis. JAM-A may be considered a negative prognostic factor and a potential therapeutic target. PMID:21695058

  19. A functional assay for gap junctional examination; electroporation of adherent cells on indium-tin oxide.

    PubMed

    Geletu, Mulu; Guy, Stephanie; Firth, Kevin; Raptis, Leda

    2014-01-01

    In this technique, cells are cultured on a glass slide that is partly coated with indium-tin oxide (ITO), a transparent, electrically conductive material. A variety of molecules, such as peptides or oligonucleotides can be introduced into essentially 100% of the cells in a non-traumatic manner. Here, we describe how it can be used to study intercellular, gap junctional communication. Lucifer yellow penetrates into the cells when an electric pulse, applied to the conductive surface on which they are growing, causes pores to form through the cell membrane. This is electroporation. Cells growing on the nonconductive glass surface immediately adjacent to the electroporated region do not take up Lucifer yellow by electroporation but do acquire the fluorescent dye as it is passed to them via gap junctions that link them to the electroporated cells. The results of the transfer of dye from cell to cell can be observed microscopically under fluorescence illumination. This technique allows for precise quantitation of gap junctional communication. In addition, it can be used for the introduction of peptides or other non-permeant molecules, and the transfer of small electroporated peptides via gap junctions to inhibit the signal in the adjacent, non-electroporated cells is a powerful demonstration of signal inhibition. PMID:25350637

  20. Analysis of cell-cell junctions in human amnion and chorionic plate affected by chorioamnionitis.

    PubMed

    Licini, Caterina; Tossetta, Giovanni; Avellini, Chiara; Ciarmela, Pasquapina; Lorenzi, Teresa; Toti, Paolo; Gesuita, Rosaria; Voltolini, Chiara; Petraglia, Felice; Castellucci, Mario; Marzioni, Daniela

    2016-07-01

    Chorioamnionitis is an acute inflammatory reaction associated with the premature rupture of the fetal membranes. It is caused mainly by invasion of bacteria from the vaginal tract that can penetrate the intact membranes and invade the amnion cavity and the decidua. Tight junctions (TJs) and adherent junctions (AJs) are intercellular junctions crucial for epithelia adhesion and permeability regulation in a wide variety of tissues and organs. Our aim is to investigate if TJ and AJ molecules are involved in human chorioamnionitis. We studied the protein expression (by immunohistochemistry and western blotting) and the mRNA levels (by RT-PCR) of some junction proteins such as Zonula Occludens-1 (ZO-1), occludin, VE-cadherin and β-catenin in fetal membranes from women with chorioamnionitis compared to those membranes derived from idiopathic pregnancies. Western blotting and immunohistochemical data established that occludin expression was decreased in amnion with chorioamnionitis compared to amnion from idiopathic pregnancies. Samples tested for ZO-1, VE-cadherin and β-catenin (proteins and mRNAs) showed no differences between idiopathic and pathological membranes. One of the most relevant results is the decrease of occludin in membranes with chorioamnionitis. Since we have previously demonstrated that some cytokines, particularly elevated in the chorioamnionitis, cause the disruption of TJs in placental villi, we suggest that the decrease of occludin in amnion may be the first change that leads to the rupture of the amniotic membrane in this pathology. PMID:26739007

  1. Mic13 Is Essential for Formation of Crista Junctions in Mammalian Cells

    PubMed Central

    Anand, Ruchika; Strecker, Valentina; Urbach, Jennifer; Wittig, Ilka; Reichert, Andreas S.

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondrial cristae are connected to the inner boundary membrane via crista junctions which are implicated in the regulation of oxidative phosphorylation, apoptosis, and import of lipids and proteins. The MICOS complex determines formation of crista junctions. We performed complexome profiling and identified Mic13, also termed Qil1, as a subunit of the MICOS complex. We show that MIC13 is an inner membrane protein physically interacting with MIC60, a central subunit of the MICOS complex. Using the CRISPR/Cas method we generated the first cell line deleted for MIC13. These knockout cells show a complete loss of crista junctions demonstrating that MIC13 is strictly required for the formation of crista junctions. MIC13 is required for the assembly of MIC10, MIC26, and MIC27 into the MICOS complex. However, it is not needed for the formation of the MIC60/MIC19/MIC25 subcomplex suggesting that the latter is not sufficient for crista junction formation. MIC13 is also dispensable for assembly of respiratory chain complexes and for maintaining mitochondrial network morphology. Still, lack of MIC13 resulted in a moderate reduction of mitochondrial respiration. In summary, we show that MIC13 has a fundamental role in crista junction formation and that assembly of respiratory chain supercomplexes is independent of mitochondrial cristae shape. PMID:27479602

  2. Mic13 Is Essential for Formation of Crista Junctions in Mammalian Cells.

    PubMed

    Anand, Ruchika; Strecker, Valentina; Urbach, Jennifer; Wittig, Ilka; Reichert, Andreas S

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondrial cristae are connected to the inner boundary membrane via crista junctions which are implicated in the regulation of oxidative phosphorylation, apoptosis, and import of lipids and proteins. The MICOS complex determines formation of crista junctions. We performed complexome profiling and identified Mic13, also termed Qil1, as a subunit of the MICOS complex. We show that MIC13 is an inner membrane protein physically interacting with MIC60, a central subunit of the MICOS complex. Using the CRISPR/Cas method we generated the first cell line deleted for MIC13. These knockout cells show a complete loss of crista junctions demonstrating that MIC13 is strictly required for the formation of crista junctions. MIC13 is required for the assembly of MIC10, MIC26, and MIC27 into the MICOS complex. However, it is not needed for the formation of the MIC60/MIC19/MIC25 subcomplex suggesting that the latter is not sufficient for crista junction formation. MIC13 is also dispensable for assembly of respiratory chain complexes and for maintaining mitochondrial network morphology. Still, lack of MIC13 resulted in a moderate reduction of mitochondrial respiration. In summary, we show that MIC13 has a fundamental role in crista junction formation and that assembly of respiratory chain supercomplexes is independent of mitochondrial cristae shape. PMID:27479602

  3. Role of auxin during intercellular infection of Discaria trinervis by Frankia

    PubMed Central

    Imanishi, Leandro; Perrine-Walker, Francine M.; Ndour, Adama; Vayssières, Alice; Conejero, Genevieve; Lucas, Mikaël; Champion, Antony; Laplaze, Laurent; Wall, Luis; Svistoonoff, Sergio

    2014-01-01

    Nitrogen-fixing nodules induced by Frankia in the actinorhizal plant Discaria trinervis result from a primitive intercellular root invasion pathway that does not involve root hair deformation and infection threads. Here, we analyzed the role of auxin in this intercellular infection pathway at the molecular level and compared it with our previous work in the intracellular infected actinorhizal plant Casuarina glauca. Immunolocalisation experiments showed that auxin accumulated in Frankia-infected cells in both systems. We then characterized the expression of auxin transporters in D. trinervis nodules. No activation of the heterologous CgAUX1 promoter was detected in infected cells in D. trinervis. These results were confirmed with the endogenous D. trinervis gene, DtAUX1. However, DtAUX1 was expressed in the nodule meristem. Consistently, transgenic D. trinervis plants containing the auxin response marker DR5:VENUS showed expression of the reporter gene in the meristem. Immunolocalisation experiments using an antibody against the auxin efflux carrier PIN1, revealed the presence of this transporter in the plasma membrane of infected cells. Finally, we used in silico cellular models to analyse auxin fluxes in D. trinervis nodules. Our results point to the existence of divergent roles of auxin in intercellularly- and intracellularly-infected actinorhizal plants, an ancestral infection pathways leading to root nodule symbioses. PMID:25191330

  4. Nanodiamond-Mediated Intercellular Transport of Proteins through Membrane Tunneling Nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Epperla, Chandra Prakash; Mohan, Nitin; Chang, Che-Wei; Chen, Chia-Chun; Chang, Huan-Cheng

    2015-12-01

    Recently discovered tunneling nanotubes (TNTs) are capable of creating intercellular communication pathways through which transport of proteins and other cytoplasmic components occurs. Intercellular transport is related to many diseases and nanotubes are potentially useful as drug-delivery channels for cancer therapy. Here, we apply fluorescent nanodiamond (FND) as a photostable tracker, as well as a protein carrier, to illustrate the transport events in TNTs of human cells. Proteins, including bovine serum albumin and green fluorescent protein, are first coated on 100-nm FNDs by physical adsorption and then single-particle tracking of the bioconjugates in the transient membrane connections is carried out by fluorescence microscopy. Stop-and-go and to-and-fro motions mediated by molecular motors are found for the active transport of protein-loaded FNDs trapped in the endosomal vehicles of human embryonic kidney cells (HEK293T). Quantitative analysis of the heterotypical transport between HEK293T and SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells by flow cytometry confirm the formation of open-ended nanotubes between them, despite that their TNTs differ in structural components. Our results demonstrate the promising applications of this novel carbon-based nanomaterial for intercellular delivery of biomolecular cargo down to the single-particle level. PMID:26479149

  5. Role of auxin during intercellular infection of Discaria trinervis by Frankia.

    PubMed

    Imanishi, Leandro; Perrine-Walker, Francine M; Ndour, Adama; Vayssières, Alice; Conejero, Genevieve; Lucas, Mikaël; Champion, Antony; Laplaze, Laurent; Wall, Luis; Svistoonoff, Sergio

    2014-01-01

    Nitrogen-fixing nodules induced by Frankia in the actinorhizal plant Discaria trinervis result from a primitive intercellular root invasion pathway that does not involve root hair deformation and infection threads. Here, we analyzed the role of auxin in this intercellular infection pathway at the molecular level and compared it with our previous work in the intracellular infected actinorhizal plant Casuarina glauca. Immunolocalisation experiments showed that auxin accumulated in Frankia-infected cells in both systems. We then characterized the expression of auxin transporters in D. trinervis nodules. No activation of the heterologous CgAUX1 promoter was detected in infected cells in D. trinervis. These results were confirmed with the endogenous D. trinervis gene, DtAUX1. However, DtAUX1 was expressed in the nodule meristem. Consistently, transgenic D. trinervis plants containing the auxin response marker DR5:VENUS showed expression of the reporter gene in the meristem. Immunolocalisation experiments using an antibody against the auxin efflux carrier PIN1, revealed the presence of this transporter in the plasma membrane of infected cells. Finally, we used in silico cellular models to analyse auxin fluxes in D. trinervis nodules. Our results point to the existence of divergent roles of auxin in intercellularly- and intracellularly-infected actinorhizal plants, an ancestral infection pathways leading to root nodule symbioses. PMID:25191330

  6. Construction of van der Waals magnetic tunnel junction using ferromagnetic layered dichalcogenide

    SciTech Connect

    Arai, Miho; Moriya, Rai Yabuki, Naoto; Masubuchi, Satoru; Ueno, Keiji; Machida, Tomoki

    2015-09-07

    We investigate the micromechanical exfoliation and van der Waals (vdW) assembly of ferromagnetic layered dichalcogenide Fe{sub 0.25}TaS{sub 2}. The vdW interlayer coupling at the Fe-intercalated plane of Fe{sub 0.25}TaS{sub 2} allows exfoliation of flakes. A vdW junction between the cleaved crystal surfaces is constructed by dry transfer method. We observe tunnel magnetoresistance in the resulting junction under an external magnetic field applied perpendicular to the plane, demonstrating spin-polarized tunneling between the ferromagnetic layered material and the vdW junction.

  7. Quantifying cadherin mechanotransduction machinery assembly/disassembly dynamics using fluorescence covariance analysis

    PubMed Central

    Vedula, Pavan; Cruz, Lissette A.; Gutierrez, Natasha; Davis, Justin; Ayee, Brian; Abramczyk, Rachel; Rodriguez, Alexis J.

    2016-01-01

    Quantifying multi-molecular complex assembly in specific cytoplasmic compartments is crucial to understand how cells use assembly/disassembly of these complexes to control function. Currently, biophysical methods like Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer and Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy provide quantitative measurements of direct protein-protein interactions, while traditional biochemical approaches such as sub-cellular fractionation and immunoprecipitation remain the main approaches used to study multi-protein complex assembly/disassembly dynamics. In this article, we validate and quantify multi-protein adherens junction complex assembly in situ using light microscopy and Fluorescence Covariance Analysis. Utilizing specific fluorescently-labeled protein pairs, we quantified various stages of adherens junction complex assembly, the multiprotein complex regulating epithelial tissue structure and function following de novo cell-cell contact. We demonstrate: minimal cadherin-catenin complex assembly in the perinuclear cytoplasm and subsequent localization to the cell-cell contact zone, assembly of adherens junction complexes, acto-myosin tension-mediated anchoring, and adherens junction maturation following de novo cell-cell contact. Finally applying Fluorescence Covariance Analysis in live cells expressing fluorescently tagged adherens junction complex proteins, we also quantified adherens junction complex assembly dynamics during epithelial monolayer formation. PMID:27357130

  8. Lightweight IMM PV Flexible Blanket Assembly

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spence, Brian

    2015-01-01

    Deployable Space Systems (DSS) has developed an inverted metamorphic multijunction (IMM) photovoltaic (PV) integrated modular blanket assembly (IMBA) that can be rolled or z-folded. This IMM PV IMBA technology enables a revolutionary flexible PV blanket assembly that provides high specific power, exceptional stowed packaging efficiency, and high-voltage operation capability. DSS's technology also accommodates standard third-generation triple junction (ZTJ) PV device technologies to provide significantly improved performance over the current state of the art. This SBIR project demonstrated prototype, flight-like IMM PV IMBA panel assemblies specifically developed, designed, and optimized for NASA's high-voltage solar array missions.

  9. Joint assembly

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, Andrew (Inventor); Punnoose, Andrew (Inventor); Strausser, Katherine (Inventor); Parikh, Neil (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    A joint assembly is provided which includes a drive assembly and a swivel mechanism. The drive assembly features a motor operatively associated with a plurality of drive shafts for driving auxiliary elements, and a plurality of swivel shafts for pivoting the drive assembly. The swivel mechanism engages the swivel shafts and has a fixable element that may be attached to a foundation. The swivel mechanism is adapted to cooperate with the swivel shafts to pivot the drive assembly with at least two degrees of freedom relative to the foundation. The joint assembly allows for all components to remain encased in a tight, compact, and sealed package, making it ideal for space, exploratory, and commercial applications.

  10. The Complex of Ciliary Neurotrophic Factor-Ciliary Neurotrophic Factor Receptor α Up-Regulates Connexin43 and Intercellular Coupling in Astrocytes via the Janus Tyrosine Kinase/Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription PathwayD⃞

    PubMed Central

    Ozog, Mark A.; Bernier, Suzanne M.; Bates, Dave C.; Chatterjee, Bishwanath; Lo, Cecilia W.; Naus, Christian C.G.

    2004-01-01

    Cytokines regulate numerous cell processes, including connexin expression and gap junctional coupling. In this study, we examined the effect of ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) on connexin43 (Cx43) expression and intercellular coupling in astrocytes. Murine cortical astrocytes matured in vitro were treated with CNTF (20 ng/ml), soluble ciliary neurotrophic factor receptor α (CNTFRα) (200 ng/ml), or CNTF-CNTFRα. Although CNTF and CNTFRα alone had no effect on Cx43 expression, the heterodimer CNTF-CNTFRα significantly increased both Cx43 mRNA and protein levels. Cx43 immunostaining correlated with increased intercellular coupling as determined by dye transfer analysis. By using the pharmacological inhibitor α-cyano-(3,4-dihydroxy)-N-benzylcinnamide (AG490), the increase in Cx43 was found to be dependent on the Janus tyrosine kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription (JAK/STAT) pathway. Immunocytochemical analysis revealed that CNTF-CNTFRα treatment produced nuclear localization of phosphorylated STAT3, whereas CNTF treatment alone did not. Transient transfection of constructs containing various sequences of the Cx43 promoter tagged to a LacZ reporter into ROS 17/2.8 cells confirmed that the promoter region between -838 to -1693 was deemed necessary for CNTF-CNTFRα to induce heightened expression. CNTF-CNTFRα did not alter Cx30 mRNA levels, suggesting selectivity of CNTF-CNTFRα for connexin signaling. Together in the presence of soluble receptor, CNTF activates the JAK/STAT pathway leading to enhanced Cx43 expression and intercellular coupling. PMID:15342787

  11. Cyclic stretch disrupts apical junctional complexes in Caco-2 cell monolayers by a JNK-2-, c-Src-, and MLCK-dependent mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Samak, Geetha; Gangwar, Ruchika; Crosby, Lynn M.; Desai, Leena P.; Wilhelm, Kristina; Waters, Christopher M.

    2014-01-01

    The intestinal epithelium is subjected to various types of mechanical stress. In this study, we investigated the impact of cyclic stretch on tight junction and adherens junction integrity in Caco-2 cell monolayers. Stretch for 2 h resulted in a dramatic modulation of tight junction protein distribution from a linear organization into wavy structure. Continuation of cyclic stretch for 6 h led to redistribution of tight junction proteins from the intercellular junctions into the intracellular compartment. Disruption of tight junctions was associated with redistribution of adherens junction proteins, E-cadherin and β-catenin, and dissociation of the actin cytoskeleton at the actomyosin belt. Stretch activates JNK2, c-Src, and myosin light-chain kinase (MLCK). Inhibition of JNK, Src kinase or MLCK activity and knockdown of JNK2 or c-Src attenuated stretch-induced disruption of tight junctions, adherens junctions, and actin cytoskeleton. Paracellular permeability measured by a novel method demonstrated that cyclic stretch increases paracellular permeability by a JNK, Src kinase, and MLCK-dependent mechanism. Stretch increased tyrosine phosphorylation of occludin, ZO-1, E-cadherin, and β-catenin. Inhibition of JNK or Src kinase attenuated stretch-induced occludin phosphorylation. Immunofluorescence localization indicated that phospho-MLC colocalizes with the vesicle-like actin structure at the actomyosin belt in stretched cells. On the other hand, phospho-c-Src colocalizes with the actin at the apical region of cells. This study demonstrates that cyclic stretch disrupts tight junctions and adherens junctions by a JNK2, c-Src, and MLCK-dependent mechanism. PMID:24722904

  12. The Peptidoglycan-Binding Protein SjcF1 Influences Septal Junction Function and Channel Formation in the Filamentous Cyanobacterium Anabaena

    PubMed Central

    Rudolf, Mareike; Tetik, Nalan; Ramos-León, Félix; Flinner, Nadine; Ngo, Giang; Stevanovic, Mara; Burnat, Mireia; Pernil, Rafael; Flores, Enrique

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Filamentous, heterocyst-forming cyanobacteria exchange nutrients and regulators between cells for diazotrophic growth. Two alternative modes of exchange have been discussed involving transport either through the periplasm or through septal junctions linking adjacent cells. Septal junctions and channels in the septal peptidoglycan are likely filled with septal junction complexes. While possible proteinaceous factors involved in septal junction formation, SepJ (FraG), FraC, and FraD, have been identified, little is known about peptidoglycan channel formation and septal junction complex anchoring to the peptidoglycan. We describe a factor, SjcF1, involved in regulation of septal junction channel formation in the heterocyst-forming cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120. SjcF1 interacts with the peptidoglycan layer through two peptidoglycan-binding domains and is localized throughout the cell periphery but at higher levels in the intercellular septa. A strain with an insertion in sjcF1 was not affected in peptidoglycan synthesis but showed an altered morphology of the septal peptidoglycan channels, which were significantly wider in the mutant than in the wild type. The mutant was impaired in intercellular exchange of a fluorescent probe to a similar extent as a sepJ deletion mutant. SjcF1 additionally bears an SH3 domain for protein-protein interactions. SH3 binding domains were identified in SepJ and FraC, and evidence for interaction of SjcF1 with both SepJ and FraC was obtained. SjcF1 represents a novel protein involved in structuring the peptidoglycan layer, which links peptidoglycan channel formation to septal junction complex function in multicellular cyanobacteria. Nonetheless, based on its subcellular distribution, this might not be the only function of SjcF1. PMID:26126850

  13. Herlitz junctional epidermolysis bullosa.

    PubMed

    Laimer, Martin; Lanschuetzer, Christoph M; Diem, Anja; Bauer, Johann W

    2010-01-01

    Junctional epidermolysis bullosa type Herlitz (JEB-H) is the autosomal recessively inherited, more severe variant of "lucidolytic" JEB. Characterized by generalized, extensive mucocutaneous blistering at birth and early lethality, this devastating condition is most often caused by homozygous null mutations in the genes LAMA3, LAMB3, or LAMC2, each encoding for 1 of the 3 chains of the heterotrimer laminin-332. The JEB-H subtype usually presents as a severe and clinically diverse variant of the EB group of mechanobullous genodermatoses. This article outlines the epidemiology, presentation, and diagnosis of JEB-H. Morbidity and mortality are high, necessitating optimized protocols for early (including prenatal) diagnosis and palliative care. Gene therapy remains the most promising perspective. PMID:19945616

  14. Ion bipolar junction transistors.

    PubMed

    Tybrandt, Klas; Larsson, Karin C; Richter-Dahlfors, Agneta; Berggren, Magnus

    2010-06-01

    Dynamic control of chemical microenvironments is essential for continued development in numerous fields of life sciences. Such control could be achieved with active chemical circuits for delivery of ions and biomolecules. As the basis for such circuitry, we report a solid-state ion bipolar junction transistor (IBJT) based on conducting polymers and thin films of anion- and cation-selective membranes. The IBJT is the ionic analogue to the conventional semiconductor BJT and is manufactured using standard microfabrication techniques. Transistor characteristics along with a model describing the principle of operation, in which an anionic base current amplifies a cationic collector current, are presented. By employing the IBJT as a bioelectronic circuit element for delivery of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, its efficacy in modulating neuronal cell signaling is demonstrated. PMID:20479274

  15. Ion bipolar junction transistors

    PubMed Central

    Tybrandt, Klas; Larsson, Karin C.; Richter-Dahlfors, Agneta; Berggren, Magnus

    2010-01-01

    Dynamic control of chemical microenvironments is essential for continued development in numerous fields of life sciences. Such control could be achieved with active chemical circuits for delivery of ions and biomolecules. As the basis for such circuitry, we report a solid-state ion bipolar junction transistor (IBJT) based on conducting polymers and thin films of anion- and cation-selective membranes. The IBJT is the ionic analogue to the conventional semiconductor BJT and is manufactured using standard microfabrication techniques. Transistor characteristics along with a model describing the principle of operation, in which an anionic base current amplifies a cationic collector current, are presented. By employing the IBJT as a bioelectronic circuit element for delivery of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, its efficacy in modulating neuronal cell signaling is demonstrated. PMID:20479274

  16. Disordered graphene Josephson junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz, W. A.; Covaci, L.; Peeters, F. M.

    2015-02-01

    A tight-binding approach based on the Chebyshev-Bogoliubov-de Gennes method is used to describe disordered single-layer graphene Josephson junctions. Scattering by vacancies, ripples, or charged impurities is included. We compute the Josephson current and investigate the nature of multiple Andreev reflections, which induce bound states appearing as peaks in the density of states for energies below the superconducting gap. In the presence of single-atom vacancies, we observe a strong suppression of the supercurrent, which is a consequence of strong intervalley scattering. Although lattice deformations should not induce intervalley scattering, we find that the supercurrent is still suppressed, which is due to the presence of pseudomagnetic barriers. For charged impurities, we consider two cases depending on whether the average doping is zero, i.e., existence of electron-hole puddles, or finite. In both cases, short-range impurities strongly affect the supercurrent, similar to the vacancies scenario.

  17. Enterocytes’ tight junctions: From molecules to diseases

    PubMed Central

    Assimakopoulos, Stelios F; Papageorgiou, Ismini; Charonis, Aristidis

    2011-01-01

    Tight junctions (TJs) are structures between cells where cells appear in the closest possible contact. They are responsible for sealing compartments when epithelial sheets are generated. They regulate the permeability of ions, (macro) molecules and cells via the paracellular pathway. Their structure at the electron microscopic level has been well known since the 1970s; however, only recently has their macromolecular composition been revealed. This review first examines the major macromolecular components of the TJs (occludin, claudins, junctional adhesion molecule and tricellulin) and then the associated macromolecules at the intracellular plaque [zonula occludens (ZO)-1, ZO-2, ZO-3, AF-6, cingulin, 7H6]. Emphasis is given to their interactions in order to begin to understand the mode of assembly of TJs. The functional significance of TJs is detailed and several mechanisms and factors involved are discussed briefly. Emphasis is given to the role of intestinal TJs and the alterations observed or speculated in diverse disease states. Specifically, intestinal TJs may exert a pathogenetic role in intestinal (inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease) and extraintestinal diseases (diabetes type 1, food allergies, autoimmune diseases). Additionally, intestinal TJs may be secondarily disrupted during the course of diverse diseases, subsequently allowing the bacterial translocation phenomenon and promoting the systemic inflammatory response, which is often associated with clinical deterioration. The major questions in the field are highlighted. PMID:22184542

  18. Robert Feulgen Prize Lecture. Distribution and role of gap junctions in normal myocardium and human ischaemic heart disease.

    PubMed

    Green, C R; Severs, N J

    1993-02-01

    the presence of large junctions arranged as a peripheral ring around the disk, with smaller junctions in an interior zone: an arrangement that may facilitate efficient intercellular transfer of current. By applying our immunolabelling techniques to tissue from hearts removed from transplant patients with advanced ischaemic heart disease, we have demonstrated that gap junction distribution between myocytes at the border zone of healed infarcts is markedly disordered. This abnormality may contribute to the genesis of reentrant arrhythmias in ischaemic heart disease. PMID:8478212

  19. Modulation of human cell responses to space radiation by gap-junction communication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Autsavapromporn, Narongchai; de Toledo, Sonia M.; Buonanno, Manuela; Yang, Zhi; Harris, Andrew; Jay-Gerin, Jean-Paul; Azzam, Edouard

    Understanding the biological effects of space radiation and their underlying mechanism is critical to estimating the health risk associated with human exploration of space. A coordinated interaction of multiple cellular processes is likely involved in the sensing and processing of stressful effects induced by different types of space radiation. Here, we focused on the role of gap-junction intercellular communication (GJIC) in responses of human cells exposed to 1 GeV/n protons or 56 Fe-ions. We compared the results with data obtained in human cells exposed, in parallel, to γ-rays or α-particles. As expected, a higher level of cell killing and DNA damage, per unit dose, was induced in confluent, density-inhibited cells (98% in G0 /G1 ) exposed to α-particles or energetic 56 Fe-ions than γ-rays or protons. Strikingly, greatly attenuated effects occurred when sub-confluent cultures, synchronized in G0 /G1 ,were exposed to 56 Fe-ions. These data suggest that direct intercellular communication is involved in the effects of high linear energy transfer (LET) 56 Fe-ions. To examine the role of gap-junctions in propagating stressful effect, confluent cultures were exposed to 56 Fe-ions or α-particles and incubated for various time periods at 37° C in the presence or absence of the gap-junction inhibitor α-glycyrrhetinic acid (AGA). No repair of potentially lethal radiation damage occurred in cells incubated in the absence of AGA. In contrast, inhibition of functional GJIC significantly enhanced clonogenic survival of irradiated cells. To test the role of junctional channel permeability in the observed effects, we used human adenocarcinoma (HeLa) cells in which specific connexins (Cx) can be expressed in the absence of endogenous connexins. Whereas HeLa cells with selective inducible expression of Cx26 gap-junctions promoted radiation toxic effects, expression of Cx32 junctional channels in HeLa cells promoted pro-survival effects. Experiments are in progress to

  20. Low dose/low fluence ionizing radiation-induced biological effects: The role of intercellular communication and oxidative metabolism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azzam, Edouard

    Mechanistic investigations have been considered critical to understanding the health risks of exposure to ionizing radiation. To gain greater insight in the biological effects of exposure to low dose/low fluence space radiations with different linear energy transfer (LET) properties, we examined short and long-term biological responses to energetic protons and high charge (Z) and high energy (E) ions (HZE particles) in human cells maintained in culture and in targeted and non-targeted tissues of irradiated rodents. Particular focus of the studies has been on mod-ulation of gene expression, proliferative capacity, induction of DNA damage and perturbations in oxidative metabolism. Exposure to mean doses of 1000 MeV/nucleon iron ions, by which a small to moderate proportion of cells in an exposed population is targeted through the nucleus by an HZE particle, induced stressful effects in the irradiated and non-irradiated cells in the population. Direct intercellular communication via gap-junctions was a primary mediator of the propagation of stressful effects from irradiated to non-irradiated cells. Compromised prolif-erative capacity, elevated level of DNA damage and oxidative stress evaluated by measurements of protein carbonylation, lipid peroxidation and activity of metabolic enzymes persisted in the progeny of irradiated and non-irradiated cells. In contrast, progeny of cells exposed to high or low doses from 150-1000 MeV protons retained the ability to form colonies and harbored similar levels of micronuclei, a surrogate form of DNA damage, as control, which correlated with normal reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels. Importantly, a significant increase in the spontaneous neoplastic transformation frequency was observed in progeny of bystander mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs) co-cultured with MEFs irradiated with energetic iron ions but not protons. Of particular significance, stressful effects were detected in non-targeted tissues of rats that received partial

  1. Thermopower measurements in molecular junctions.

    PubMed

    Rincón-García, Laura; Evangeli, Charalambos; Rubio-Bollinger, Gabino; Agraït, Nicolás

    2016-08-01

    The measurement of thermopower in molecular junctions offers complementary information to conductance measurements and is becoming essential for the understanding of transport processes at the nanoscale. In this review, we discuss the recent advances in the study of the thermoelectric properties of molecular junctions. After presenting the theoretical background for thermoelectricity at the nanoscale, we review the experimental techniques for measuring the thermopower in these systems and discuss the main results. Finally, we consider the challenges in the application of molecular junctions in viable thermoelectric devices. PMID:27277330

  2. Electronic properties of nanotube junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lambin, Ph.; Meunier, V.

    1998-08-01

    The possibility of realizing junctions between two different nanotubes has recently attracted a great interest, even though much remains to be done for putting this idea in concrete form. Pentagon-heptagon pair defects in the otherwise perfect graphitic network make such connections possible, with virtually infinite varieties. In this paper, the literature devoted to nanotube junctions is briefly reviewed. A special emphasize is put on the electronic properties of C nanotube junctions, together with an indication on how their current-voltage characteristics may look like.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2011-08-05

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

  4. Detection and visualization of differential splicing in RNA-Seq data with JunctionSeq

    PubMed Central

    Hartley, Stephen W.; Mullikin, James C.

    2016-01-01

    Although RNA-Seq data provide unprecedented isoform-level expression information, detection of alternative isoform regulation (AIR) remains difficult, particularly when working with an incomplete transcript annotation. We introduce JunctionSeq, a new method that builds on the statistical techniques used by the well-established DEXSeq package to detect differential usage of both exonic regions and splice junctions. In particular, JunctionSeq is capable of detecting differential usage of novel splice junctions without the need for an additional isoform assembly step, greatly improving performance when the available transcript annotation is flawed or incomplete. JunctionSeq also provides a powerful and streamlined visualization toolset that allows bioinformaticians to quickly and intuitively interpret their results. We tested our method on publicly available data from several experiments performed on the rat pineal gland and Toxoplasma gondii, successfully detecting known and previously validated AIR genes in 19 out of 19 gene-level hypothesis tests. Due to its ability to query novel splice sites, JunctionSeq is still able to detect these differences even when all alternative isoforms for these genes were not included in the transcript annotation. JunctionSeq thus provides a powerful method for detecting alternative isoform regulation even with low-quality annotations. An implementation of JunctionSeq is available as an R/Bioconductor package. PMID:27257077

  5. Constructing higher order DNA origami arrays using DNA junctions of anti-parallel/parallel double crossovers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Zhipeng; Park, Seongsu; Yamashita, Naoki; Kawai, Kentaro; Hirai, Yoshikazu; Tsuchiya, Toshiyuki; Tabata, Osamu

    2016-06-01

    DNA origami provides a versatile method for the construction of nanostructures with defined shape, size and other properties; such nanostructures may enable a hierarchical assembly of large scale architecture for the placement of other nanomaterials with atomic precision. However, the effective use of these higher order structures as functional components depends on knowledge of their assembly behavior and mechanical properties. This paper demonstrates construction of higher order DNA origami arrays with controlled orientations based on the formation of two types of DNA junctions: anti-parallel and parallel double crossovers. A two-step assembly process, in which preformed rectangular DNA origami monomer structures themselves undergo further self-assembly to form numerically unlimited arrays, was investigated to reveal the influences of assembly parameters. AFM observations showed that when parallel double crossover DNA junctions are used, the assembly of DNA origami arrays occurs with fewer monomers than for structures formed using anti-parallel double crossovers, given the same assembly parameters, indicating that the configuration of parallel double crossovers is not energetically preferred. However, the direct measurement by AFM force-controlled mapping shows that both DNA junctions of anti-parallel and parallel double crossovers have homogeneous mechanical stability with any part of DNA origami.

  6. Gap junction communication between cells aggregated on a cellulose-coated polystyrene: influence of connexin 43 phosphorylation.

    PubMed

    Faucheux, N; Zahm, J M; Bonnet, N; Legeay, G; Nagel, M D

    2004-06-01

    The appropriate functioning of tissues and organ systems depends on intercellular communication such as gap junctions formed by connexin (Cx) protein channels between adjacent cells. We have previously shown that Swiss 3T3 cells aggregated on hydrophilic cellulose substratum Cuprophan (CU) establish short linear gap junctions composed of Cx 43 in cell surface plaques. This phenomenon seems to depend on the high intracellular cyclic AMP (cAMP) concentration triggered by attachment of the cells to CU. We have now used a cellulose-coated polystyrene inducing the same cell behaviour to analyse the gap junction communication between aggregated cells. The transfer of the dye Lucifer Yellow (LY) between cells showed that cells aggregated on cellulose substratum rapidly (within 90 min) establish functional gap junctions. Inhibitors of cAMP protein kinase (PKI) or protein kinase C (GF109203X) both inhibited the diffusion of LY between neighbouring cells. Western blot analysis showed that this change in permeability was correlated with a decrease in Cx 43 phosphorylation. Thus, cellulose substrata seem to induce cell-cell communication through Cx 43 phosphorylation modulated by PKA and PKC. To understand the mechanisms by which a substratum regulates gap junctional communication is critically important for the emerging fields of tissue engineering and biohybrid devices. PMID:14751734

  7. Gap junctions in olfactory neurons modulate olfactory sensitivity

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background One of the fundamental questions in olfaction is whether olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) behave as independent entities within the olfactory epithelium. On the basis that mature ORNs express multiple connexins, I postulated that gap junctional communication modulates olfactory responses in the periphery and that disruption of gap junctions in ORNs reduces olfactory sensitivity. The data collected from characterizing connexin 43 (Cx43) dominant negative transgenic mice OlfDNCX, and from calcium imaging of wild type mice (WT) support my hypothesis. Results I generated OlfDNCX mice that express a dominant negative Cx43 protein, Cx43/β-gal, in mature ORNs to inactivate gap junctions and hemichannels composed of Cx43 or other structurally related connexins. Characterization of OlfDNCX revealed that Cx43/β-gal was exclusively expressed in areas where mature ORNs resided. Real time quantitative PCR indicated that cellular machineries of OlfDNCX were normal in comparison to WT. Electroolfactogram recordings showed decreased olfactory responses to octaldehyde, heptaldehyde and acetyl acetate in OlfDNCX compared to WT. Octaldehyde-elicited glomerular activity in the olfactory bulb, measured according to odor-elicited c-fos mRNA upregulation in juxtaglomerular cells, was confined to smaller areas of the glomerular layer in OlfDNCX compared to WT. In WT mice, octaldehyde sensitive neurons exhibited reduced response magnitudes after application of gap junction uncoupling reagents and the effects were specific to subsets of neurons. Conclusions My study has demonstrated that altered assembly of Cx43 or structurally related connexins in ORNs modulates olfactory responses and changes olfactory activation maps in the olfactory bulb. Furthermore, pharmacologically uncoupling of gap junctions reduces olfactory activity in subsets of ORNs. These data suggest that gap junctional communication or hemichannel activity plays a critical role in maintaining olfactory

  8. Josephson junction Q-spoiler

    DOEpatents

    Clarke, J.; Hilbert, C.; Hahn, E.L.; Sleator, T.

    1986-03-25

    An automatic Q-spoiler comprising at least one Josephson tunnel junction connected in an LC circuit for flow of resonant current therethrough. When in use in a system for detecting the magnetic resonance of a gyromagnetic particle system, a high energy pulse of high frequency energy irradiating the particle system will cause the critical current through the Josephson tunnel junctions to be exceeded, causing the tunnel junctions to act as resistors and thereby damp the ringing of the high-Q detection circuit after the pulse. When the current has damped to below the critical current, the Josephson tunnel junctions revert to their zero-resistance state, restoring the Q of the detection circuit and enabling the low energy magnetic resonance signals to be detected.

  9. Josephson junction Q-spoiler

    DOEpatents

    Clarke, John; Hilbert, Claude; Hahn, Erwin L.; Sleator, Tycho

    1988-01-01

    An automatic Q-spoiler comprising at least one Josephson tunnel junction connected in an LC circuit for flow of resonant current therethrough. When in use in a system for detecting the magnetic resonance of a gyromagnetic particle system, a high energy pulse of high frequency energy irradiating the particle system will cause the critical current through the Josephson tunnel junctions to be exceeded, causing the tunnel junctions to act as resistors and thereby damp the ringing of the high-Q detection circuit after the pulse. When the current has damped to below the critical current, the Josephson tunnel junctions revert to their zero-resistance state, restoring the Q of the detection circuit and enabling the low energy magnetic resonance signals to be detected.

  10. Thermal conductance of superlattice junctions

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Simon; McGaughey, Alan J. H.

    2015-05-15

    We use molecular dynamics simulations and the lattice-based scattering boundary method to compute the thermal conductance of finite-length Lennard-Jones superlattice junctions confined by bulk crystalline leads. The superlattice junction thermal conductance depends on the properties of the leads. For junctions with a superlattice period of four atomic monolayers at temperatures between 5 and 20 K, those with mass-mismatched leads have a greater thermal conductance than those with mass-matched leads. We attribute this lead effect to interference between and the ballistic transport of emergent junction vibrational modes. The lead effect diminishes when the temperature is increased, when the superlattice period is increased, and when interfacial disorder is introduced, but is reversed in the harmonic limit.

  11. Electronic thermometry in tunable tunnel junction

    DOEpatents

    Maksymovych, Petro

    2016-03-15

    A tunable tunnel junction thermometry circuit includes a variable width tunnel junction between a test object and a probe. The junction width is varied and a change in thermovoltage across the junction with respect to the change in distance across the junction is determined. Also, a change in biased current with respect to a change in distance across the junction is determined. A temperature gradient across the junction is determined based on a mathematical relationship between the temperature gradient, the change in thermovoltage with respect to distance and the change in biased current with respect to distance. Thermovoltage may be measured by nullifying a thermoelectric tunneling current with an applied voltage supply level. A piezoelectric actuator may modulate the probe, and thus the junction width, to vary thermovoltage and biased current across the junction. Lock-in amplifiers measure the derivatives of the thermovoltage and biased current modulated by varying junction width.

  12. Connexins, E-cadherin, Claudin-7 and β-catenin transiently form junctional nexuses during the post-natal mammary gland development.

    PubMed

    Dianati, Elham; Poiraud, Jérémy; Weber-Ouellette, Anne; Plante, Isabelle

    2016-08-01

    Gap junctions are intercellular channels made of connexins (Cxs) that allow direct communication between adjacent cells. Modulation of Cxs has been associated with abnormal development and function of the mammary gland and breast cancer. However, the mechanisms underlying their expression during normal mammary gland are not yet known. Cxs interact with components of tight and adherens junctions. Thus, we hypothesized that the expression levels of Cxs vary during mammary gland development and are regulated through stage-dependent interactions with members of the tight and adherens junctions. Our specific objectives were to: 1) determine the expression of Cxs and tight and adherens junction proteins throughout development and 2) characterize Cxs interactions with components of tight and adherens junctions. Murine mammary glands were sampled at various developmental stages (pre-pubescent to post-weaning). RT-qPCR and western-blot analyses demonstrated differential expression patterns for all gap (Cx43, Cx32, Cx26, Cx30), tight (Claudin-1, -3, -4, -7) and adherens (β-catenin, E- and P-cadherins) junctions throughout development. Interestingly, co-immunoprecipitation demonstrated interactions between these different types of junctions. Cx30 interacted with Cx26 just at the late pregnancy stage. While Cx43 showed a persistent interaction with β-catenin from virginity to post-weaning, its interactions with E-cadherin and Claudin-7 were transient. Cx32 interacted with Cx26, E-cadherin and β-catenin during lactation. Immunofluorescence results confirmed the existence of a junctional nexus that remodeled during mammary gland development. Together, our results confirm that the expression levels of Cxs vary concomitantly and that Cxs form junctional nexuses with tight and adherens junctions, suggesting the existence of common regulatory pathways. PMID:27291930

  13. Neuromuscular junctional disorders.

    PubMed

    Girija, A S; Ashraf, V V

    2008-07-01

    Neuromuscular junctional disorders (NMJ) in children are distinct entity. They may be acquired or hereditary. They pose problem in diagnosis because of the higher occurrence of sero negative Myasthenia Gravis (MG) cases in children. The identity of MusK antibody positivity in a good percentage of sero negative cases further adds to problems in diagnosis. The Congenital Myasthenic Syndrome (CMS) which are rare disorders of hereditary neuromuscular transmission (NMT) has to be differentiated because immunotherapy has no benefit in this group. Molecular genetic studies of these diseases helps to identify specific type of CMS which is important as other drugs like Fluoxetine, Quinidine are found to be effective in some. In infancy, all can manifest as floppy infant syndrome. The important key to diagnosis is by detailed electrophysiological studies including repetitive nerve stimulation at slow and high rates and its response to anticholinesterases and estimation of Acetyl choline receptor antibodies. Other causes of neuromuscular transmission defects viz. snake venom poisoning and that due to drugs are discussed. PMID:18716738

  14. Confocal Annular Josephson Tunnel Junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monaco, Roberto

    2016-04-01

    The physics of Josephson tunnel junctions drastically depends on their geometrical configurations and here we show that also tiny geometrical details play a determinant role. More specifically, we develop the theory of short and long annular Josephson tunnel junctions delimited by two confocal ellipses. The behavior of a circular annular Josephson tunnel junction is then seen to be simply a special case of the above result. For junctions having a normalized perimeter less than one, the threshold curves in the presence of an in-plane magnetic field of arbitrary orientations are derived and computed even in the case with trapped Josephson vortices. For longer junctions, a numerical analysis is carried out after the derivation of the appropriate motion equation for the Josephson phase. We found that the system is modeled by a modified and perturbed sine-Gordon equation with a space-dependent effective Josephson penetration length inversely proportional to the local junction width. Both the fluxon statics and dynamics are deeply affected by the non-uniform annulus width. Static zero-field multiple-fluxon solutions exist even in the presence of a large bias current. The tangential velocity of a traveling fluxon is not determined by the balance between the driving and drag forces due to the dissipative losses. Furthermore, the fluxon motion is characterized by a strong radial inward acceleration which causes electromagnetic radiation concentrated at the ellipse equatorial points.

  15. Confocal Annular Josephson Tunnel Junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monaco, Roberto

    2016-09-01

    The physics of Josephson tunnel junctions drastically depends on their geometrical configurations and here we show that also tiny geometrical details play a determinant role. More specifically, we develop the theory of short and long annular Josephson tunnel junctions delimited by two confocal ellipses. The behavior of a circular annular Josephson tunnel junction is then seen to be simply a special case of the above result. For junctions having a normalized perimeter less than one, the threshold curves in the presence of an in-plane magnetic field of arbitrary orientations are derived and computed even in the case with trapped Josephson vortices. For longer junctions, a numerical analysis is carried out after the derivation of the appropriate motion equation for the Josephson phase. We found that the system is modeled by a modified and perturbed sine-Gordon equation with a space-dependent effective Josephson penetration length inversely proportional to the local junction width. Both the fluxon statics and dynamics are deeply affected by the non-uniform annulus width. Static zero-field multiple-fluxon solutions exist even in the presence of a large bias current. The tangential velocity of a traveling fluxon is not determined by the balance between the driving and drag forces due to the dissipative losses. Furthermore, the fluxon motion is characterized by a strong radial inward acceleration which causes electromagnetic radiation concentrated at the ellipse equatorial points.

  16. Octagonal Defects at Carbon Nanotube Junctions

    PubMed Central

    Jaskólski, W.; Pelc, M.; Chico, Leonor; Ayuela, A.

    2013-01-01

    We investigate knee-shaped junctions of semiconductor zigzag carbon nanotubes. Two dissimilar octagons appear at such junctions; one of them can reconstruct into a pair of pentagons. The junction with two octagons presents two degenerate localized states at Fermi energy (EF). The reconstructed junction has only one state near EF, indicating that these localized states are related to the octagonal defects. The inclusion of Coulomb interaction splits the localized states in the junction with two octagons, yielding an antiferromagnetic system. PMID:24089604

  17. Influence of geometry and materials on the axial and torsional strength of the head-neck taper junction in modular hip replacements: A finite element study.

    PubMed

    Fallahnezhad, Khosro; Farhoudi, Hamidreza; Oskouei, Reza H; Taylor, Mark

    2016-07-01

    The assembly force is important in establishing the mechanical environment at the head-neck taper junction of modular hip replacements. Previous experimental results of the assembled taper junctions with different material combinations (Co-28Cr-6Mo and Ti-6Al-4V) reported similar axial strengths (pull-off loads), but lower torsional strengths (twist-off moments) for the CoCr/CoCr junction. However, mechanics of the junction and the strength behaviour have not been understood yet. A three dimensional finite element model of an isolated femoral head-neck junction was developed to explore the assembly and disassembly procedures, particularly the axial and torsional strengths for different material combinations and geometries. Under the same assembly load, the contacting length between the CoCr head and titanium neck was greater than that of in CoCr/CoCr. The contact length in the titanium neck was more sensitive to the assembly force when compared to the CoCr neck. For instance, with increasing the assembly force from 1890 to 3700N, the contact length increased by 88% for CoCr/Ti and 59% for CoCr/CoCr junctions. The torsional strength of the junction was related to the lateral deformation of the neck material due to the applied moment. The angular mismatch existing between the head and neck components was found to play the main role in the torsional strength of the junction. The smaller mismatch angle the higher torsional strength. It is suggested to consider reducing the mismatch angle, particularly in CoCr/CoCr junctions, and ensure a sufficiently high assembly force is applied by impaction for this combination. PMID:26807768

  18. LINGO-1, a Transmembrane Signaling Protein, Inhibits Oligodendrocyte Differentiation and Myelination through Intercellular Self-interactions

    PubMed Central

    Jepson, Scott; Vought, Bryan; Gross, Christian H.; Gan, Lu; Austen, Douglas; Frantz, J. Daniel; Zwahlen, Jacque; Lowe, Derek; Markland, William; Krauss, Raul

    2012-01-01

    Overcoming remyelination failure is a major goal of new therapies for demyelinating diseases like multiple sclerosis. LINGO-1, a key negative regulator of myelination, is a transmembrane signaling protein expressed in both neurons and oligodendrocytes. In neurons, LINGO-1 is an integral component of the Nogo receptor complex, which inhibits axonal growth via RhoA. Because the only ligand-binding subunit of this complex, the Nogo receptor, is absent in oligodendrocytes, the extracellular signals that inhibit myelination through a LINGO-1-mediated mechanism are unknown. Here we show that LINGO-1 inhibits oligodendrocyte terminal differentiation through intercellular interactions and is capable of a self-association in trans. Consistent with previous reports, overexpression of full-length LINGO-1 inhibited differentiation of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs). Unexpectedly, treatment with a soluble recombinant LINGO-1 ectodomain also had an inhibitory effect on OPCs and decreased myelinated axonal segments in cocultures with neurons from dorsal root ganglia. We demonstrated LINGO-1-mediated inhibition of OPCs through intercellular signaling by using a surface-bound LINGO-1 construct expressed ectopically in astrocytes. Further investigation showed that the soluble LINGO-1 ectodomain can interact with itself in trans by binding to CHO cells expressing full-length LINGO-1. Finally, we observed that soluble LINGO-1 could activate RhoA in OPCs. We propose that LINGO-1 acts as both a ligand and a receptor and that the mechanism by which it negatively regulates OPC differentiation and myelination is mediated by a homophilic intercellular interaction. Disruption of this protein-protein interaction could lead to a decrease of LINGO-1 inhibition and an increase in myelination. PMID:22514275

  19. LINGO-1, a transmembrane signaling protein, inhibits oligodendrocyte differentiation and myelination through intercellular self-interactions.

    PubMed

    Jepson, Scott; Vought, Bryan; Gross, Christian H; Gan, Lu; Austen, Douglas; Frantz, J Daniel; Zwahlen, Jacque; Lowe, Derek; Markland, William; Krauss, Raul

    2012-06-22

    Overcoming remyelination failure is a major goal of new therapies for demyelinating diseases like multiple sclerosis. LINGO-1, a key negative regulator of myelination, is a transmembrane signaling protein expressed in both neurons and oligodendrocytes. In neurons, LINGO-1 is an integral component of the Nogo receptor complex, which inhibits axonal growth via RhoA. Because the only ligand-binding subunit of this complex, the Nogo receptor, is absent in oligodendrocytes, the extracellular signals that inhibit myelination through a LINGO-1-mediated mechanism are unknown. Here we show that LINGO-1 inhibits oligodendrocyte terminal differentiation through intercellular interactions and is capable of a self-association in trans. Consistent with previous reports, overexpression of full-length LINGO-1 inhibited differentiation of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs). Unexpectedly, treatment with a soluble recombinant LINGO-1 ectodomain also had an inhibitory effect on OPCs and decreased myelinated axonal segments in cocultures with neurons from dorsal root ganglia. We demonstrated LINGO-1-mediated inhibition of OPCs through intercellular signaling by using a surface-bound LINGO-1 construct expressed ectopically in astrocytes. Further investigation showed that the soluble LINGO-1 ectodomain can interact with itself in trans by binding to CHO cells expressing full-length LINGO-1. Finally, we observed that soluble LINGO-1 could activate RhoA in OPCs. We propose that LINGO-1 acts as both a ligand and a receptor and that the mechanism by which it negatively regulates OPC differentiation and myelination is mediated by a homophilic intercellular interaction. Disruption of this protein-protein interaction could lead to a decrease of LINGO-1 inhibition and an increase in myelination. PMID:22514275

  20. Coupling vs decoupling approaches for PDE/ODE systems modeling intercellular signaling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carraro, Thomas; Friedmann, Elfriede; Gerecht, Daniel

    2016-06-01

    We consider PDE/ODE systems for the simulation of intercellular signaling in multicellular environments. The intracellular processes for each cell described here by ODEs determine the long-time dynamics, but the PDE part dominates the solving effort. Thus, it is not clear if commonly used decoupling methods can outperform a coupling approach. Based on a sensitivity analysis, we present a systematic comparison between coupling and decoupling approaches for this class of problems and show numerical results. For biologically relevant configurations of the model, our quantitative study shows that a coupling approach performs much better than a decoupling one.

  1. Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1 (ICAM-1) in the Pathogenesis of Asthma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wesgner, Craig D.; Gundel, Robert H.; Reilly, Patricia; Haynes, Nancy; Letts, L. Gordon; Rothlein, Robert

    1990-01-01

    Airway eosinophilia, epithelial desquamation, and hyperresponsiveness are characteristics of the airway inflammation underlying bronchial asthma. The contribution of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) to eosinophil migration and airway responsiveness was studied. ICAM-1 partially mediated eosinophil adhesion to endothelium in vitro and was upregulated on inflamed bronchial endothelium in vivo. ICAM-1 expression was also upregulated on inflamed airway epithelium in vitro and in vivo. In a primate model of asthma, a monoclonal antibody to ICAM-1 attenuated airway eosinophilia and hyperresponsiveness. Thus, antagonism of ICAM-1 may provide a therapeutic approach to reducing airway inflammation, hyperresponsiveness, and asthma symptoms.

  2. Circulating microRNAs as Hormones: Intercellular and Inter-organ Conveyors of Epigenetic Information?

    PubMed

    Yoshioka, Yusuke; Katsuda, Takeshi; Ochiya, Takahiro

    2015-01-01

    The discovery of microRNAs (miRNAs) has created a paradigm shift not only in the traditional central dogma of molecular biology but also in the research of a variety of human diseases. Fourteen years after the discovery of miRNAs, there was another revolutionary finding: cells can shuttle miRNAs between each other via small lipid bilayer vesicles called exosomes. This exosome-mediated horizontal transfer of genetically encoded messages is now recognized as a means of intercellular communication. This chapter reviews the concept that miRNAs can function as hormones conveying epigenetic information. PMID:26608208

  3. Functional chromaffin cell plasticity in response to stress: focus on nicotinic, gap junction, and voltage-gated Ca2+ channels.

    PubMed

    Guérineau, Nathalie C; Desarménien, Michel G; Carabelli, Valentina; Carbone, Emilio

    2012-10-01

    An increase in circulating catecholamines constitutes one of the mechanisms whereby human body responds to stress. In response to chronic stressful situations, the adrenal medullary tissue exhibits crucial morphological and functional changes that are consistent with an improvement of chromaffin cell stimulus-secretion coupling efficiency. Stimulus-secretion coupling encompasses multiple intracellular (chromaffin cell excitability, Ca(2+) signaling, exocytosis, endocytosis) and intercellular pathways (splanchnic nerve-mediated synaptic transmission, paracrine and endocrine communication, gap junctional coupling), each of them being potentially subjected to functional remodeling upon stress. This review focuses on three chromaffin cell incontrovertible actors, the cholinergic nicotinic receptors and the voltage-dependent T-type Ca(2+) channels that are directly involved in Ca(2+)-dependent events controlling catecholamine secretion and electrical activity, and the gap junctional communication involved in the modulation of catecholamine secretion. We show here that these three actors react differently to various stressors, sometimes independently, sometimes in concert or in opposition. PMID:22252244

  4. Functional chromaffin cell plasticity in response to stress: focus on nicotinic, gap junction, and voltage-gated Ca2+ channels

    PubMed Central

    Guérineau, Nathalie C.; Desarménien, Michel G.; Carabelli, Valentina; Carbone, Emilio

    2012-01-01

    An increase in circulating catecholamines constitutes one of the mechanisms whereby human body responds to stress. In response to chronic stressful situations, the adrenal medullary tissue exhibits crucial morphological and functional changes that are consistent with an improvement of chromaffin cell stimulus-secretion coupling efficiency. Stimulus-secretion coupling encompasses multiple intracellular (chromaffin cell excitability, Ca2+ signaling, exocytosis, endocytosis) and intercellular pathways (splanchnic nerve-mediated synaptic transmission, paracrine and endocrine communication, gap junctional coupling), each of them being potentially subjected to functional remodeling upon stress. This review focuses on three chromaffin cell incontrovertible actors, the cholinergic nicotinic receptors and the voltage-dependent T-type Ca2+ channels that are directly involved in Ca2+-dependent events controlling catecholamine secretion and electrical activity, and the gap junctional communication involved in the modulation of catecholamine secretion. We show here that these three actors react differently to various stressors, sometimes independently, sometimes in concert or in opposition. PMID:22252244

  5. Crew Assembly

    NASA Video Gallery

    Train to improve your dexterity and hand-eye coordination by assembling a puzzle.The Train Like an Astronaut project uses the excitement of exploration to challenge students to set goals, practice ...

  6. Seal assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, Roger Neal; Longfritz, William David

    2001-01-01

    A seal assembly that seals a gap formed by a groove comprises a seal body, a biasing element, and a connection that connects the seal body to the biasing element to form the seal assembly. The seal assembly further comprises a concave-shaped center section and convex-shaped contact portions at each end of the seal body. The biasing element is formed from an elastic material and comprises a convex-shaped center section and concave-shaped biasing zones that are opposed to the convex-shaped contact portions. The biasing element is adapted to be compressed to change a width of the seal assembly from a first width to a second width that is smaller than the first width. In the compressed state, the seal assembly can be disposed in the groove. After release of the compressing force, the seal assembly expands. The contact portions will move toward a surface of the groove and the biasing zones will move into contact with another surface of the groove. The biasing zones will bias the contact portions of the seal body against the surface of the groove.

  7. Junctional communication is induced in migrating capillary endothelial cells.

    PubMed

    Pepper, M S; Spray, D C; Chanson, M; Montesano, R; Orci, L; Meda, P

    1989-12-01

    Using an in vitro model in which a confluent monolayer of capillary endothelial cells is mechanically wounded, gap junction-mediated intercellular communication has been studied by loading the cells with the fluorescent dye, Lucifer Yellow. Approximately 40-50% of the cells in a nonwounded confluent monolayer were coupled in groups of four to five cells (basal level). Basal levels of communication were also observed in sparse and preconfluent cultures, but were reduced in postconfluent monolayers. 30 min after wounding, coupling was markedly reduced between cells lining the wound. Communication at the wound was partially reestablished by 2 h, exceeded basal levels after 6 h and reached a maximum after 24 h, at which stage approximately 90% of the cells were coupled in groups of six to seven cells. When the wound had closed (after 8 d), the increase in communication was no longer observed. Induction of wound-associated communication was unaffected by exposure of the cells to the DNA synthesis inhibitor mitomycin C, but was prevented by the protein synthesis inhibitor, cycloheximide. The induction of wound-associated communication was also inhibited when migration was prevented by placing the cells immediately after wounding at 22 degrees C or after exposure to cytochalasin D, suggesting that the increase in communication is dependent on cells migrating into the wound area. In contrast, migration was not prevented when coupling was blocked by exposure of the cells to retinoic acid, although this agent did disrupt the characteristic sheet-like pattern of migration typically seen during endothelial repair. These results suggest that junctional communication may play an important role in wound repair, possibly by coordinating capillary endothelial cell migration. PMID:2592412

  8. Pores in the epidermis: aquaporins and tight junctions.

    PubMed

    Brandner, J M

    2007-12-01

    Water homeostasis of the epidermis is important for the appearance and physical properties of the skin, as well as for water balance in the body. It depends on several factors, e.g. barrier quality, uptake of water into the epidermis, concentration of water-retaining humectants, and external humidity. Aquaporins (AQPs) are pores in the plasmamembranes of cells. Monomeric AQPs form barrel-like structures that are primarily water selective, some AQPs also transport glycerol and possibly other small solutes. In the epidermis, AQP3 is the predominant AQP. It is localized mainly in basal but also in suprabasal layers of the epidermis and is permeable for water as well as for glycerol, a humectant. Mice deficient in AQP3 exhibit reduced stratum corneum (SC) hydration and impaired SC barrier recovery after SC removal. In skin diseases associated with elevated transepidermal water loss (TEWL) and reduced SC hydration, altered expression of AQP3 was shown. Tight junctions (TJ) are cell-cell junctions, which play a central role in sealing the intercellular space of cell sheets and thereby establishing a paracellular barrier. Within the TJ, pores are postulated to exist, which allow the controlled diffusion of water and solutes via the paracellular pathway. In the epidermis, TJ structures were demonstrated in the stratum granulosum whereas TJ proteins were found in all viable layers. Mice which overexpress or are deficient of key-proteins of TJ die soon after birth because of a tremendous TEWL. In various skin diseases that are accompanied by elevated TEWL and reduced skin hydration, staining patterns of TJ proteins are altered. This review will summarize our current knowledge of the involvement of AQPs and TJ in the water homeostasis of the epidermis. PMID:18489380

  9. Propofol depresses cisplatin cytotoxicity via the inhibition of gap junctions.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuan; Wang, Xiyan; Wang, Qin; Ge, Hui; Tao, Liang

    2016-06-01

    The general anesthetic, propofol, affects chemotherapeutic activity, however, the mechanism underlying its effects remains to be fully elucidated. Our previous study showed that tramadol and flurbiprofen depressed the cytotoxicity of cisplatin via the inhibition of gap junction (GJ) intercellular communication (GJIC) in connexin (Cx)32 HeLa cells. The present study investigated whether the effects of propofol on the cytotoxicity of cisplatin were mediated by GJ in U87 glioma cells and Cx26‑transfected HeLa cells. Standard colony formation assay was used to determine the cytotoxicity of cisplatin. Parachute dye coupling assay was used to measure GJ function, and western blot analysis was used to determine the expression levels of Cx32. The results revealed that exposure of the U87 glioma cells and the Cx26-transfected HeLa cells to cisplatin for 1 h reduced clonogenic survival in low density cultures (without GJs) and high density cultures (with GJs). However, the toxic effect was higher in the high density culture. In addition, pretreatment of the cells with propofol significantly reduced cisplatin‑induced cytotoxicity, but only in the presence of functional GJs. Furthermore, propofol significantly inhibited dye coupling through junctional channels, and a long duration of exposure of the cells to propofol downregulated the expression levels of Cx43 and Cx26. These results demonstrated that the inhibition of GJIC by propofol affected the therapeutic efficacy of chemotherapeutic drugs. The present study provides evidence of a novel mechanism underlying the effects of analgesics in counteracting chemotherapeutic efficiency. PMID:27082707

  10. Identification of the amino acid region involved in the intercellular interaction between the β1 subunits of Na+/K+-ATPase

    PubMed Central

    Tokhtaeva, Elmira; Sachs, George; Sun, Haiying; Dada, Laura A.; Sznajder, Jacob I.; Vagin, Olga

    2012-01-01

    Epithelial junctions depend on intercellular interactions between β1 subunits of the Na+/K+-ATPase molecules of neighboring cells. The interaction between dog and rat subunits is less effective than the interaction between two dog β1 subunits, indicating the importance of species-specific regions for β1–β1 binding. To identify these regions, the species-specific amino acid residues were mapped on a high-resolution structure of the Na+/K+-ATPase β1 subunit to select those exposed towards the β1 subunit of the neighboring cell. These exposed residues were mutated in both dog and rat YFP-linked β1 subunits (YFP–β1) and also in the secreted extracellular domain of the dog β1 subunit. Five rat-like mutations in the amino acid region spanning residues 198–207 of the dog YFP–β1 expressed in Madin–Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells decreased co-precipitation of the endogenous dog β1 subunit with YFP–β1 to the level observed between dog β1 and rat YFP–β1. In parallel, these mutations impaired the recognition of YFP–β1 by the dog-specific antibody that inhibits cell adhesion between MDCK cells. Accordingly, dog-like mutations in rat YFP–β1 increased both the (YFP–β1)–β1 interaction in MDCK cells and recognition by the antibody. Conversely, rat-like mutations in the secreted extracellular domain of the dog β1 subunit increased its interaction with rat YFP–β1 in vitro. In addition, these mutations resulted in a reduction of intercellular adhesion between rat lung epithelial cells following addition of the secreted extracellular domain of the dog β1 subunit to a cell suspension. Therefore, the amino acid region 198–207 is crucial for both trans-dimerization of the Na+/K+-ATPase β1 subunits and cell–cell adhesion. PMID:22328500

  11. Novel microscopy-based screening method reveals regulators of contact-dependent intercellular transfer

    PubMed Central

    Michael Frei, Dominik; Hodneland, Erlend; Rios-Mondragon, Ivan; Burtey, Anne; Neumann, Beate; Bulkescher, Jutta; Schölermann, Julia; Pepperkok, Rainer; Gerdes, Hans-Hermann; Kögel, Tanja

    2015-01-01

    Contact-dependent intercellular transfer (codeIT) of cellular constituents can have functional consequences for recipient cells, such as enhanced survival and drug resistance. Pathogenic viruses, prions and bacteria can also utilize this mechanism to spread to adjacent cells and potentially evade immune detection. However, little is known about the molecular mechanism underlying this intercellular transfer process. Here, we present a novel microscopy-based screening method to identify regulators and cargo of codeIT. Single donor cells, carrying fluorescently labelled endocytic organelles or proteins, are co-cultured with excess acceptor cells. CodeIT is quantified by confocal microscopy and image analysis in 3D, preserving spatial information. An siRNA-based screening using this method revealed the involvement of several myosins and small GTPases as codeIT regulators. Our data indicates that cellular protrusions and tubular recycling endosomes are important for codeIT. We automated image acquisition and analysis to facilitate large-scale chemical and genetic screening efforts to identify key regulators of codeIT. PMID:26271723

  12. Initiation and promotion in cancer formation: the importance of studies on intercellular communication.

    PubMed

    Potter, V R

    1980-01-01

    Three major theories of cancer--somatic mutation, virus causation, and faulty differentiation--are proposed to involve alterations in DNA structure. Each results finally in terms of failures in the normal intercellular communication that involves feedback between differentiated cells acting on less differentiated cells still capable of proliferation. The historical background of the latter idea is traced to Osgood, Weiss and Kavanau, and to Iversen. The historical background of concepts of initiation and promotion are traced to Berenblum and Mottram and the Boutwell concept of promotion as gene activation is cited. It is proposed that gene activation by promoters is a valid concept and that it results from the blocking of the normal intercellular communication postulated by Osgood and others. The problem of explaining the low probability of cancer following initiators or promoters acting alone is cited as a problem in basic science. A hypothesis to solve the problem is proposed: Cancer results from two of more relevant mutations: promoters enhance proliferation of cells with one relevant mutation, thereby increasing the probability of obtaining a cell with two relevant mutations. A new scheme of five stages of hepatocarcinogenesis is proposed in terms of the hypothesis and available data. PMID:7013284

  13. Site-specific Effects of DUOX1-Related Peroxidase on Intercellular Apoptosis Signaling.

    PubMed

    Heinzelmann, Sonja; Bauer, Georg

    2015-11-01

    Intercellular apoptosis-inducing HOCl signaling is known as an interplay between superoxide anions/H₂O₂ of transformed target cells and dual oxidase 1 (DUOX1)-related peroxidase that is released from neighboring non-transformed or transformed effector cells. Effector cells are dispensable when the release of the peroxidase domain of DUOX1 from target cells is prevented through inhibition of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity. Membrane-associated peroxidase is then co-localized to NADPH oxidase 1 (NOX1) and establishes HOCl signaling specifically in transformed cells, using the same biochemical pathways as classical intercellular HOCl signaling. Membrane-associated peroxidase protects against exogenous HOCl through reversal of the peroxidase reaction. In addition, membrane-associated peroxidase protects against NO/peroxynitrite signaling as it oxidates NO and decomposes peroxynitrite. The protective function of membrane-associated peroxidase (in the absence of MMP) is analogous to that of catalase, whereas the destructive effect of the enzyme, i.e. the synthesis of HOCl, is independent of its localization and of MMP activity. PMID:26504019

  14. Ozone concentration in leaf intercellular air spaces is close to zero

    SciTech Connect

    Laisk, A.; Moldau, H. ); Kull, O. )

    1989-07-01

    Transpiration and ozone uptake rates were measured simultaneously in sunflower leaves at different stomatal openings and various ozone concentrations. Ozone uptake rates were proportional to the ozone concentration up to 1500 nanoliters per liter. The leaf gas phase diffusion resistance (stomatal plus boundary layer) to water vapor was calculated and converted to the resistance to ozone multiplying it by the theoretical ratio of diffusion coefficients for water vapor and ozone in air (1.67). The ozone concentration in intercellular air spaces calculated from the ozone uptake rate and diffusion resistance to ozone scattered around zero. The ozone concentration in intercellular air spaces was measured directly bu supplying ozone to the leaf from one side and measuring the equilibrium concentration above the other side, and it was found to be zero. The total leaf resistance to ozone was proportional to the gas phase resistance to water vapor with a coefficient of 1.68. It is concluded that ozone enters the leaf by diffusion through the stomata, and is rapidly decomposed in cell walls and plasmalemma.

  15. Exploring the role of lipids in intercellular conduits: breakthroughs in the pipeline

    PubMed Central

    Delage, Elise; Zurzolo, Chiara

    2013-01-01

    It has been known for more than a century that most of the plant cells are connected to their neighbors through membranous pores perforating the cell wall, namely plasmodesmata (PDs). The recent discovery of tunneling nanotubes (TNTs), thin membrane bridges established between distant mammalian cells, suggests that intercellular communication mediated through cytoplasmic continuity could be a conserved feature of eukaryotic organisms. Although TNTs differ from PDs in their formation and architecture, both are characterized by a continuity of the plasma membrane between two cells, delimiting a nanotubular channel supported by actin-based cytoskeleton. Due to this unusual membrane organization, lipids are likely to play critical roles in the formation and stability of intercellular conduits like TNTs and PDs, but also in regulating the transfer through these structures. While it is crucial for a better understanding of those fascinating communication highways, the study of TNT lipid composition and dynamics turned out to be extremely challenging. The present review aims to give an overview of the recent findings in this context. We will also discuss some of the promising imaging approaches, which might be the key for future breakthroughs in the field and could also benefit the research on PDs. PMID:24368909

  16. Cell walls as a stage for intercellular communication regulating shoot meristem development

    PubMed Central

    Tameshige, Toshiaki; Hirakawa, Yuki; Uchida, Naoyuki

    2015-01-01

    Aboveground organs of plants are ultimately derived/generated from the shoot apical meristem (SAM), which is a proliferative tissue located at the apex of the stem. The SAM contains a population of stem cells that provide new cells for organ/tissue formation. The SAM is composed of distinct cell layers and zones with different properties. Primordia of lateral organs develop at the periphery of the SAM. The shoot apex is a dynamic and complex tissue, and as such intercellular communications among cells, layers and zones play significant roles in the coordination of cell proliferation, growth and differentiation to achieve elaborate morphogenesis. Recent findings have highlighted the importance of a number of signaling molecules acting in the cell wall space for the intercellular communication, including classic phytohormones and secretory peptides. Moreover, accumulating evidence has revealed that cell wall properties and their modifying enzymes modulate hormone actions. In this review, we outline how behaviors of signaling molecules and changes of cell wall properties are integrated for the shoot meristem regulation. PMID:26029226

  17. Intercellular communication by exosome-derived microRNAs in cancer.

    PubMed

    Hannafon, Bethany N; Ding, Wei-Qun

    2013-01-01

    The development of human cancers is a multistep process in which normal cells acquire characteristics that ultimately lead to their conversion into cancer cells. Many obstacles must be overcome for this process to occur; of these obstacles, is the ability to survive an inhospitable microenvironment. It is recognized that the intercommunication between tumor cells and their surrounding microenvironment is essential to overcoming this obstacle and for the tumor to progress, metastasize and establish itself at distant sites. Exosomes are membrane-derived vesicles that have recently been recognized as important mediators of intercellular communication, as they carry lipids, proteins, mRNAs and microRNAs that can be transferred to a recipient cell via fusion of the exosome with the target cell membrane. In the context of cancer cells, this process entails the transfer of cancer-promoting cellular contents to surrounding cells within the tumor microenvironment or into the circulation to act at distant sites, thereby enabling cancer progression. In this process, the transfer of exosomal microRNAs to a recipient cell where they can regulate target gene expression is of particular interest, both in understanding the basic biology of cancer progression and for the development of therapeutic approaches. This review discusses the exosome-mediated intercellular communication via microRNAs within the tumor microenvironment in human cancers, with a particular focus on breast cancer exosomes. PMID:23839094

  18. [ULTRASTRUCTURAL ORGANIZATION OF CELLULAR ELEMENTS AND INTERCELLULAR CONNECTIONS IN STATOCYSTS OF TERRESTRIAL PULMONARY SNAIL H. LUCORUM].

    PubMed

    Gorgiladze, G; Bukia, R; Kalandarishvili, E; Taktakishvili, A; Gelashvili, N; Davitashvili, M; Madjagaladze, N

    2016-03-01

    The organ of mollusc equilibrium - statocyst appears to be the analogue of acoustic-vestibular system in vertebrate animals. In terrestrial pulmonary snail the epithelial lining of statocyst cavity is created by two types of the cells - a small amount of large cells, provided with kinocilia of sensitive cells and considerably a large number of small supporting or inserted cells, covered with the microvilli. By means of transmission and scanning electron microscopy the ultrastructure and intercellular connections of these cells were studied. The sensitive cells have in a certain way structured cytoplasm, which consists of three layers: ectoplasm, granular layer and hyaloplasm. Myelin-like bodies having the granular, vesicular and drop-like formations in the centre appear to be the special structure of the cytoplasm. In the cytoplasm there are areas, saturated with electron dense glycogen granules. On the electronograms sometimes it is observed how the pinocytic vesicles in the supporting cells are created from the diverticulum of plasmatic membrane of sensitive cells. The boundary areas of plasmatic membrane of adjacent cells (sensitive cells with supporting or supporting cells with the support) are also characterized by the presence of specialized contacts, which are analogous to desmosomes in the epithelial tissues, as well as by the existence of cellular desmosomes, interdigitations. Numerous lacunas have been revealed in the intercellular space, which are connected by the thin tubules and ducts resulting in the formation of a complicated configuration of extensive system of communicating with each other lacunae, which have the exit in statocyst cavity. PMID:27119843

  19. Cell walls as a stage for intercellular communication regulating shoot meristem development.

    PubMed

    Tameshige, Toshiaki; Hirakawa, Yuki; Torii, Keiko U; Uchida, Naoyuki

    2015-01-01

    Aboveground organs of plants are ultimately derived/generated from the shoot apical meristem (SAM), which is a proliferative tissue located at the apex of the stem. The SAM contains a population of stem cells that provide new cells for organ/tissue formation. The SAM is composed of distinct cell layers and zones with different properties. Primordia of lateral organs develop at the periphery of the SAM. The shoot apex is a dynamic and complex tissue, and as such intercellular communications among cells, layers and zones play significant roles in the coordination of cell proliferation, growth and differentiation to achieve elaborate morphogenesis. Recent findings have highlighted the importance of a number of signaling molecules acting in the cell wall space for the intercellular communication, including classic phytohormones and secretory peptides. Moreover, accumulating evidence has revealed that cell wall properties and their modifying enzymes modulate hormone actions. In this review, we outline how behaviors of signaling molecules and changes of cell wall properties are integrated for the shoot meristem regulation. PMID:26029226

  20. The role of topological features of intercellular communication networks by the synchronization of cellular oscillators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markovič, R.; Gosak, M.; Marhl, M.

    2012-08-01

    Because of the complexity of processes that govern the regulatory mechanisms which control the cellular functions and dynamic behavior, mathematical models and numerical simulations are needed to fully grasp the mechanisms and functions of biological rhythms. In the last decade the theory of complex networks is frequently applied to address those issues. In the present paper we investigate theoretically the role of the intercellular communication network structure by synchronization of cellular oscillators. Motivated by the fact that in biological systems the interplay between the network structure and the dynamics taking place on it is closely interrelated, we develop a spatial network representation of an ensemble of cells in which we can tune the network organization between a scale-free network with dominating long-range connections and a homogeneous network with mostly adjacent neurons connected. Our results reveal that for noise-induced oscillations in excitable cells and for chaotic bursting oscillations the most synchronized response is obtained for the intermediate regime where long-as well as short-range connections constitute the intercellular network. On the other hand, for periodic oscillations it is found than the scale-free network topology ensures the greatest collective response. We argue that those findings are related to flexibility properties of individual cells.

  1. Enhanced effect of microdystrophin gene transfection by HSV-VP22 mediated intercellular protein transport

    PubMed Central

    Xiong, Fu; Xiao, Shaobo; Yu, Meijuan; Li, Wanyi; Zheng, Hui; Shang, Yanchang; Peng, Funing; Zhao, Cuiping; Zhou, Wenliang; Chen, Huanchun; Fang, Liurong; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S; Zhang, Cheng

    2007-01-01

    Background Duchenne musclar dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked recessive disease caused by mutations of dystrophin gene, there is no effective treatment for this disorder at present. Plasmid-mediated gene therapy is a promising therapeutical approach for the treatment of DMD. One of the major issues with plasmid-mediated gene therapy for DMD is poor transfection efficiency and distribution. The herpes simplex virus protein VP22 has the capacity to spread from a primary transduced cell to surrounding cells and improve the outcome of gene transfer. To improve the efficiency of plasmid-mediated gene therapy and investigate the utility of the intercellular trafficking properties of VP22-linked protein for the treatment for DMD, expression vectors for C-terminal versions of VP22-microdystrophin fusion protein was constructed and the VP22-mediated shuttle effect was evaluated both in vitro and in vivo. Results Our results clearly demonstrate that the VP22-microdystrophin fusion protein could transport into C2C12 cells from 3T3 cells, moreover, the VP22-microdystrophin fusion protein enhanced greatly the amount of microdystrophin that accumulated following microdystrophin gene transfer in both transfected 3T3 cells and in the muscles of dystrophin-deficient (mdx) mice. Conclusion These results highlight the efficiency of the VP22-mediated intercellular protein delivery for potential therapy of DMD and suggested that protein transduction may be a potential and versatile tool to enhance the effects of gene delivery for somatic gene therapy of DMD. PMID:17617925

  2. [Genetic control of intercellular adhesion or how cadherins shape the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster].

    PubMed

    Bécam, Isabelle; Huynh, Jean-René

    2007-03-01

    The beauty and diversity of cell shapes have always fascinated both biologists and physicists. In the early 1950, J. Holtfreter coined the term "tissue affinities" to describe the forces behind the spontaneous shaping of groups of cells. These tissue affinites were later on related to adhesive properties of cell membranes. In the 1960, Malcom Steinberg proposed the differential adhesion hypothesis (DAH) as a physical explanation of the liquid-like behaviour of tissues and cells during morphogenesis. However, the link between the cellular properties of adhesion molecules, such as the cadherins, and the physical rules that shape the body, has remained unclear. Recent in vitro studies have now shown that surface tensions, which drive the spontaneous liquid-like behaviour of cell rearrangements, are a direct and linear function of cadherin expression levels. Tissue surface tensions thus arise from differences in intercellular adhesiveness, which validates the DAH in vitro. The DAH was also vindicated in vivo by stunning experiments in Drosophila. The powerful genetic tools available in Drosophila allow to manipulate the levels and patterns of expression of several cadherins and to create artificially differences in intercellular adhesiveness. The results showed that simple laws of thermodynamics, as well as quantitative and qualitative differences in cadherins expression were sufficient to explain processes as complex as the establishment of the anterior-posterior axis and the formation of the compound eye in Drosophila. PMID:17349290

  3. Tracking Dynamic Gap Junctional Coupling in Live Cells by Local Photoactivation and Fluorescence Imaging.

    PubMed

    Yang, Song; Li, Wen-Hong

    2016-01-01

    Intercellular communication through gap junction channels is crucial for maintaining cell homeostasis and synchronizing physiological functions of tissues and organs. In this chapter, we present a noninvasive fluorescence imaging assay termed LAMP (local activation of a molecular fluorescent probe) that consists of the following steps: loading cells with a caged and cell permeable coumarin probe (NPE-HCCC2/AM), locally photolyzing the caged coumarin in one or a subpopulation of coupled cells, monitoring cell-cell dye transfer by digital fluorescence microscopy, and post-acquisition analysis to quantify the rate of junction dye transfer using Fick's equation. The LAMP assay can be conveniently carried out in fully intact cells to assess the extent and degree of cell coupling, and is compatible with other fluorophores emitting at different wavelengths to allow multicolor imaging. Moreover, by carrying out multiple photo-activations in a coupled cell pair, LAMP assay can track changes in cell coupling strength between coupled cells, hence providing a powerful method for investigating the regulation of junctional coupling by cellular biochemical changes. PMID:27207295

  4. Human alveolar epithelial cells expressing tight junctions to model the air-blood barrier.

    PubMed

    Kuehn, Anna; Kletting, Stephanie; de Souza Carvalho-Wodarz, Cristiane; Repnik, Urska; Griffiths, Gareth; Fischer, Ulrike; Meese, Eckart; Huwer, Hanno; Wirth, Dagmar; May, Tobias; Schneider-Daum, Nicole; Lehr, Claus-Michael

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes a new human alveolar epithelial cell line (hAELVi - human Alveolar Epithelial Lentivirus immortalized) with type I-like characteristics and functional tight junctions, suitable to model the air-blood barrier of the peripheral lung. Primary human alveolar epithelial cells were immortalized by a novel regimen, grown as monolayers on permeable filter supports and characterized morphologically, biochemically and biophysically. hAELVi cells maintain the capacity to form tight intercellular junctions, with high trans-epithelial electrical resistance (> 1000 Ω*cm²). The cells could be kept in culture over several days, up to passage 75, under liquid-liquid as well as air-liquid conditions. Ultrastructural analysis and real time PCR revealed type I-like cell properties, such as the presence of caveolae, expression of caveolin-1, and absence of surfactant protein C. Accounting for the barrier properties, inter-digitations sealed with tight junctions and desmosomes were also observed. Low permeability of the hydrophilic marker sodium fluorescein confirmed the suitability of hAELVi cells for in vitro transport studies across the alveolar epithelium. These results suggest that hAELVi cells reflect the essential features of the air-blood barrier, as needed for an alternative to animal testing to study absorption and toxicity of inhaled drugs, chemicals and nanomaterials. PMID:26985677

  5. Connexin 43 mediated gap junctional communication enhances breast tumor cell diapedesis in culture

    PubMed Central

    Pollmann, Mary-Ann; Shao, Qing; Laird, Dale W; Sandig, Martin

    2005-01-01

    Introduction Metastasis involves the emigration of tumor cells through the vascular endothelium, a process also known as diapedesis. The molecular mechanisms regulating tumor cell diapedesis are poorly understood, but may involve heterocellular gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) between tumor cells and endothelial cells. Method To test this hypothesis we expressed connexin 43 (Cx43) in GJIC-deficient mammary epithelial tumor cells (HBL100) and examined their ability to form gap junctions, establish heterocellular GJIC and migrate through monolayers of human microvascular endothelial cells (HMVEC) grown on matrigel-coated coverslips. Results HBL100 cells expressing Cx43 formed functional heterocellular gap junctions with HMVEC monolayers within 30 minutes. In addition, immunocytochemistry revealed Cx43 localized to contact sites between Cx43 expressing tumor cells and endothelial cells. Quantitative analysis of diapedesis revealed a two-fold increase in diapedesis of Cx43 expressing cells compared to empty vector control cells. The expression of a functionally inactive Cx43 chimeric protein in HBL100 cells failed to increase migration efficiency, suggesting that the observed up-regulation of diapedesis in Cx43 expressing cells required heterocellular GJIC. This finding is further supported by the observation that blocking homocellular and heterocellular GJIC with carbenoxolone in co-cultures also reduced diapedesis of Cx43 expressing HBL100 tumor cells. Conclusion Collectively, our results suggest that heterocellular GJIC between breast tumor cells and endothelial cells may be an important regulatory step during metastasis. PMID:15987459

  6. ROCK2 primes the endothelium for vascular hyperpermeability responses by raising baseline junctional tension.

    PubMed

    Beckers, Cora M L; Knezevic, Nebojsa; Valent, Erik T; Tauseef, Mohammad; Krishnan, Ramaswamy; Rajendran, Kavitha; Hardin, C Corey; Aman, Jurjan; van Bezu, Jan; Sweetnam, Paul; van Hinsbergh, Victor W M; Mehta, Dolly; van Nieuw Amerongen, Geerten P

    2015-07-01

    Rho kinase mediates the effects of inflammatory permeability factors by increasing actomyosin-generated traction forces on endothelial adherens junctions, resulting in disassembly of intercellular junctions and increased vascular leakage. In vitro, this is accompanied by the Rho kinase-driven formation of prominent radial F-actin fibers, but the in vivo relevance of those F-actin fibers has been debated, suggesting other Rho kinase-mediated events to occur in vascular leak. Here, we delineated the contributions of the highly homologous isoforms of Rho kinase (ROCK1 and ROCK2) to vascular hyperpermeability responses. We show that ROCK2, rather than ROCK1 is the critical Rho kinase for regulation of thrombin receptor-mediated vascular permeability. Novel traction force mapping in endothelial monolayers, however, shows that ROCK2 is not required for the thrombin-induced force enhancements. Rather, ROCK2 is pivotal to baseline junctional tension as a novel mechanism by which Rho kinase primes the endothelium for hyperpermeability responses, independent from subsequent ROCK1-mediated contractile stress-fiber formation during the late phase of the permeability response. PMID:25869521

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-04-01

    All multi-cellular animals, including hydra, insects and vertebrates, develop gap junctions, which communicate directly with neighboring cells. Gap junctions consist of protein families called connexins in vertebrates and innexins in invertebrates. Connexins and innexins have no homology in their amino acid sequence, but both are thought to have some similar characteristics, such as a tetra-membrane-spanning structure, formation of a channel by hexamer, and transmission of small molecules (e.g. ions) to neighboring cells. Pannexins were recently identified as a homolog of innexins in vertebrate genomes. Although pannexins are thought to share the function of intercellular communication with connexins and innexins, there is little information about the relationship among these three protein families of gap junctions. We phylgenetically and bioinformatically examined these protein families and other tetra-membrane-spanning proteins using a database and three analytical softwares. The clades formed by pannexin families do not belong to the species classification but do to paralogs of each member of pannexins. Amino acid sequences of pannexins are closely related to those of innexins but less to those of connexins. These data suggest that innexins and pannexins have a common origin, but the relationship between innexins/pannexins and connexins is as slight as that of other tetra-membrane-spanning members. PMID:20460741

  8. Cadherin flexibility provides a key difference between desmosomes and adherens junctions.

    PubMed

    Tariq, Humera; Bella, Jordi; Jowitt, Thomas A; Holmes, David F; Rouhi, Mansour; Nie, Zhuxiang; Baldock, Clair; Garrod, David; Tabernero, Lydia

    2015-04-28

    Desmosomes and adherens junctions are intercellular adhesive structures essential for the development and integrity of vertebrate tissue, including the epidermis and heart. Their cell adhesion molecules are cadherins: type 1 cadherins in adherens junctions and desmosomal cadherins in desmosomes. A fundamental difference is that desmosomes have a highly ordered structure in their extracellular region and exhibit calcium-independent hyperadhesion, whereas adherens junctions appear to lack such ordered arrays, and their adhesion is always calcium-dependent. We present here the structure of the entire ectodomain of desmosomal cadherin desmoglein 2 (Dsg2), using a combination of small-angle X-ray scattering, electron microscopy, and solution-based biophysical techniques. This structure reveals that the ectodomain of Dsg2 is flexible even in the calcium-bound state and, on average, is shorter than the type 1 cadherin crystal structures. The Dsg2 structure has an excellent fit with the electron tomography reconstructions of human desmosomes. This fit suggests an arrangement in which desmosomal cadherins form trans interactions but are too far apart to interact in cis, in agreement with previously reported observations. Cadherin flexibility may be key to explaining the plasticity of desmosomes that maintain tissue integrity in their hyperadhesive form, but can adopt a weaker, calcium-dependent adhesion during wound healing and early development. PMID:25855637

  9. Single gate p-n junctions in graphene-ferroelectric devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hinnefeld, J. Henry; Xu, Ruijuan; Rogers, Steven; Pandya, Shishir; Shim, Moonsub; Martin, Lane W.; Mason, Nadya

    2016-05-01

    Graphene's linear dispersion relation and the attendant implications for bipolar electronics applications have motivated a range of experimental efforts aimed at producing p-n junctions in graphene. Here we report electrical transport measurements of graphene p-n junctions formed via simple modifications to a PbZr0.2Ti0.8O3 substrate, combined with a self-assembled layer of ambient environmental dopants. We show that the substrate configuration controls the local doping region, and that the p-n junction behavior can be controlled with a single gate. Finally, we show that the ferroelectric substrate induces a hysteresis in the environmental doping which can be utilized to activate and deactivate the doping, yielding an "on-demand" p-n junction in graphene controlled by a single, universal backgate.

  10. Adipocytes in both brown and white adipose tissue of adult mice are functionally connected via gap junctions: implications for Chagas disease.

    PubMed

    Burke, Shoshana; Nagajyothi, Fnu; Thi, Mia M; Hanani, Menachem; Scherer, Philipp E; Tanowitz, Herbert B; Spray, David C

    2014-11-01

    Adipose tissue serves as a host reservoir for the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative organism in Chagas disease. Gap junctions interconnect cells of most tissues, serving to synchronize cell activities including secretion in glandular tissue, and we have previously demonstrated that gap junctions are altered in various tissues and cells infected with T. cruzi. Herein, we examined the gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) expression in infected adipose tissues. Adipose tissue is the largest endocrine organ of the body and is also involved in other physiological functions. In mammals, it is primarily composed of white adipocytes. Although gap junctions are a prominent feature of brown adipocytes, they have not been explored extensively in white adipocytes, especially in the setting of infection. Thus, we examined functional coupling in both white and brown adipocytes in mice. Injection of electrical current or the dye Lucifer Yellow into adipocytes within fat tissue spread to adjacent cells, which was reduced by treatment with agents known to block gap junctions. Moreover, Cx43 was detected in both brown and white fat tissue. At thirty and ninety days post-infection, Cx43 was downregulated in brown adipocytes and upregulated in white adipocytes. Gap junction-mediated intercellular communication likely contributes to hormone secretion and other functions in white adipose tissue and to nonshivering thermogenesis in brown fat, and modulation of the coupling by T. cruzi infection is expected to impact these functions. PMID:25150689

  11. Adipocytes in both brown and white adipose tissue of adult mice are functionally connected via gap junctions: implications for Chagas disease

    PubMed Central

    Burke, Shoshana; Nagajyothi, Fnu; Thi, Mia M.; Hanani, Menachem; Scherer, Philipp E.; Tanowitz, Herbert B.; Spray, David C.

    2015-01-01

    Adipose tissue serves as a host reservoir for the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative organism in Chagas disease. Gap junctions interconnect cells of most tissues, serving to synchronize cell activities including secretion in glandular tissue, and we have previously demonstrated that gap junctions are altered in various tissues and cells infected with T. cruzi. Herein, we examined the gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) expression in infected adipose tissues. Adipose tissue is the largest endocrine organ of the body and is also involved in other physiological functions. In mammals, it is primarily composed of white adipocytes. Although gap junctions are a prominent feature of brown adipocytes, they have not been explored extensively in white adipocytes, especially in the setting of infection. Thus, we examined functional coupling in both white and brown adipocytes in mice. Injection of electrical current or the dye Lucifer Yellow into adipocytes within fat tissue spread to adjacent cells, which was reduced by treatment with agents known to block gap junctions. Moreover, Cx43 was detected in both brown and white fat tissue. At thirty and ninety days post-infection, Cx43 was downregulated in brown adipocytes and upregulated in white adipocytes. Gap junction-mediated intercellular communication likely contributes to hormone secretion and other functions in white adipose tissue and to nonshivering thermogenesis in brown fat, and modulation of the coupling by T. cruzi infection is expected to impact these functions. PMID:25150689

  12. Probe assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Avera, C.J.

    1981-01-06

    A hand-held probe assembly, suitable for monitoring a radioactive fibrinogen tracer, is disclosed comprising a substantially cylindrically shaped probe handle having an open end. The probe handle is adapted to be interconnected with electrical circuitry for monitoring radioactivity that is sensed or detected by the probe assembly. Mounted within the probe handle is a probe body assembly that includes a cylindrically shaped probe body inserted through the open end of the probe handle. The probe body includes a photomultiplier tube that is electrically connected with a male connector positioned at the rearward end of the probe body. Mounted at the opposite end of the probe body is a probe head which supports an optical coupler therewithin. The probe head is interconnected with a probe cap which supports a detecting crystal. The probe body assembly, which consists of the probe body, the probe head, and the probe cap is supported within the probe handle by means of a pair of compressible o-rings which permit the probe assembly to be freely rotatable, preferably through 360*, within the probe handle and removable therefrom without requiring any disassembly.

  13. GAP: A computer program for gene assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Eisnstein, J.R.; Uberbacher, E.C.; Guan, X.; Mural, R.J.; Mann, R.C.

    1991-09-01

    A computer program, GAP (Gene Assembly Program), has been written to assemble and score hypothetical genes, given a DNA sequence containing the gene, and the outputs of several other programs which analyze the sequence. These programs include the codign-recognition and splice-junction-recognition modules developed in this laboratory. GAP is a prototype of a planned system in which it will be integrated with an expert system and rule base. Initial tests of GAP have been carried out with four sequences, the exons of which have been determined by biochemcial methods. The highest-scoring hypothetical genes for each of the four sequences had percent correct splice junctions ranging from 50 to 100% (average 81%) and percent correct bases ranging from 92 to 100% (average 96%). 9 refs., 1 tab.

  14. Aberrant distribution of junctional complex components in retinoic acid receptor alpha-deficient mice

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Sanny S W; Choi, Cindy; Wang, Xiangyuan; Hallock, Loretta; Wolgemuth, Debra J

    2009-01-01

    Retinoic acid receptor alpha (RARα)-deficient mice are sterile, with abnormalities in the progression of spermatogenesis and spermiogenesis. In the present study, we investigated whether defective retinoid signaling involved at least in part, disrupted cell-cell interactions. Hypertonic fixation approaches revealed defects in the integrity of the Sertoli-cell barrier in the tubules of RARα-deficient testes. Dye transfer experiments further revealed that coupling between cells from the basal to adluminal compartments was aberrant. There were also differences in the expression of several known retinoic acid (RA)-responsive genes encoding structural components of tight junctions and gap junctions. Immunostaining demonstrated a delay in the incorporation of zonula occludens (ZO-1), a peripheral component protein of tight junctions, into the Sertoli cell tight junctions. Markedly reduced expression of connexin-40 in mutant pachytene spermatocytes and round spermatids was found by in situ hybridization. An ectopic distribution of vimentin and disrupted cyclic expression of vimentin, which is usually tightly regulated during spermiogenesis, was found in RARα-deficient testes at all ages examined. Thus, the specific defects in spermiogenesis in RARα-deficient testes may correlate with a disrupted cyclic expression of RA-responsive structural components, including vimentin, a down-regulation of connexin-40 in spermatogenic cells, and delayed assembly of ZO-1 into Sertoli cell tight junctions. Interestingly, bioinformatic analysis revealed that many genes that are components of tight junctions and gap junctions contained potential retinoic acid response element binding sites. PMID:19937743

  15. Arrays of high quality SAM-based junctions and their application in molecular diode based logic.

    PubMed

    Wan, Albert; Suchand Sangeeth, C S; Wang, Lejia; Yuan, Li; Jiang, Li; Nijhuis, Christian A

    2015-12-14

    This paper describes a method to fabricate a microfluidic top-electrode that can be utilized to generate arrays of self-assembled monolayer (SAM)-based junctions. The top-electrodes consist of a liquid-metal of GaOx/EGaIn mechanically stabilized in microchannels and through-holes in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS); these top-electrodes form molecular junctions by directly placing them onto the SAM supported by template-stripped (TS) Ag or Au bottom-electrodes. Unlike conventional techniques to form multiple junctions, our method does not require lithography to pattern the bottom-electrode and is compatible with TS bottom-electrodes, which are ultra-flat with large grains, free from potential contamination of photoresist residues, and do not have electrode-edges where the molecules are unable to pack well. We formed tunneling junctions with n-alkanethiolate SAMs in yields of ∼80%, with good reproducibility and electrical stability. Temperature dependent J(V) measurements indicated that the mechanism of charge transport across the junction is coherent tunneling. To demonstrate the usefulness of these junctions, we formed molecular diodes based on SAMs with Fc head groups. These junctions rectify currents with a rectification ratio R of 45. These molecular diodes were incorporated in simple electronic circuitry to demonstrate molecular diode-based Boolean logic. PMID:26537895

  16. A split horseradish peroxidase for the detection of intercellular protein-protein interactions and sensitive visualization of synapses.

    PubMed

    Martell, Jeffrey D; Yamagata, Masahito; Deerinck, Thomas J; Phan, Sébastien; Kwa, Carolyn G; Ellisman, Mark H; Sanes, Joshua R; Ting, Alice Y

    2016-07-01

    Intercellular protein-protein interactions (PPIs) enable communication between cells in diverse biological processes, including cell proliferation, immune responses, infection, and synaptic transmission, but they are challenging to visualize because existing techniques have insufficient sensitivity and/or specificity. Here we report a split horseradish peroxidase (sHRP) as a sensitive and specific tool for the detection of intercellular PPIs. The two sHRP fragments, engineered through screening of 17 cut sites in HRP followed by directed evolution, reconstitute into an active form when driven together by an intercellular PPI, producing bright fluorescence or contrast for electron microscopy. Fusing the sHRP fragments to the proteins neurexin (NRX) and neuroligin (NLG), which bind each other across the synaptic cleft, enabled sensitive visualization of synapses between specific sets of neurons, including two classes of synapses in the mouse visual system. sHRP should be widely applicable to studying mechanisms of communication between a variety of cell types. PMID:27240195

  17. Hinge assembly

    DOEpatents

    Vandergriff, D.H.

    1999-08-31

    A hinge assembly is disclosed having a first leaf, a second leaf and linking member. The first leaf has a contact surface. The second leaf has a first contact surface and a second contact surface. The linking member pivotally connects to the first leaf and to the second leaf. The hinge assembly is capable of moving from a closed position to an open position. In the closed position, the contact surface of the first leaf merges with the first contact surface of the second leaf. In the open position, the contact surface of the first leaf merges with the second contact surface of the second leaf. The hinge assembly can include a seal on the contact surface of the first leaf. 8 figs.

  18. Hinge assembly

    DOEpatents

    Vandergriff, David Houston

    1999-01-01

    A hinge assembly having a first leaf, a second leaf and linking member. The first leaf has a contact surface. The second leaf has a first contact surface and a second contact surface. The linking member pivotally connects to the first leaf and to the second leaf. The hinge assembly is capable of moving from a closed position to an open position. In the closed position, the contact surface of the first leaf merges with the first contact surface of the second leaf. In the open position, the contact surface of the first leaf merges with the second contact surface of the second leaf. The hinge assembly can include a seal on the contact surface of the first leaf.

  19. Transport in Carbon Nanotube Junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khoo, K. H.; Chelikowsky, James R.

    2008-03-01

    There is growing interest in the use of carbon nanotube thin films as transparent electrical conductors and thin-film transistors owing to their high optical transmittance, low sheet resistivity, and ease of fabrication. [1,2] A major contribution to the sheet resistivity originates at nanotube junctions, as electrical contact is typically poor between adjacent nanotubes. It is thus important to characterize carbon nanotube junctions in order to understand the conduction properties of nanotube thin films. To this end, we have performed ab initio density functional theory calculations to investigate the structural, electronic and transport properties of carbon nanotube junctions as a function of nanotube chirality and contact geometry [1] Z. Wu et al., Science 305, 1273 (2004) [2] E. S. Snow, J. P. Novak, P. M. Campbell, and D. Park, Appl. Phys. Lett. 82, 2145 (2003).

  20. Latch assembly

    DOEpatents

    Frederickson, J.R.; Harper, W.H.; Perez, R.

    1984-08-17

    A latch assembly for releasably securing an article in the form of a canister within a container housing. The assembly includes a cam pivotally mounted on the housing wall and biased into the housing interior. The cam is urged into a disabled position by the canister as it enters the housing and a latch release plate maintains the cam disabled when the canister is properly seated in the housing. Upon displacement of the release plate, the cam snaps into latching engagement against the canister for securing the same within the housing. 2 figs.

  1. Latch assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Frederickson, James R.; Harper, William H.; Perez, Raymond

    1986-01-01

    A latch assembly for releasably securing an article in the form of a canister within a container housing. The assembly includes a cam pivotally mounted on the housing wall and biased into the housing interior. The cam is urged into a disabled position by the canister as it enters the housing and a latch release plate maintains the cam disabled when the canister is properly seated in the housing. Upon displacement of the release plate, the cam snaps into latching engagement against the canister for securing the same within the housing.

  2. Growth Retardation, Loss of Desmosomal Adhesion, and Impaired Tight Junction Function Identify a Unique Role of Plakophilin 1 In Vivo.

    PubMed

    Rietscher, Katrin; Wolf, Annika; Hause, Gerd; Rother, Annekatrin; Keil, René; Magin, Thomas M; Glass, Markus; Niessen, Carien M; Hatzfeld, Mechthild

    2016-07-01

    Desmosomes mediate strong intercellular adhesion through desmosomal cadherins that interact with intracellular linker proteins including plakophilins (PKPs) 1-3 to anchor the intermediate filaments. PKPs show overlapping but distinct expression patterns in the epidermis. So far, the contribution of individual PKPs in differentially regulating desmosome function is incompletely understood. To resolve the role of PKP1 we ablated the PKP1 gene. Here, we report that PKP1(-/-) mice were born at the expected mendelian ratio with reduced birth weight, but they otherwise appeared normal immediately after birth. However, their condition rapidly declined, and the mice died within 24 hours, developing fragile skin with lesions in the absence of obvious mechanical trauma. This was accompanied by sparse and small desmosomes. Newborn PKP1(-/-) mice showed disturbed tight junctions with an impaired inside-out barrier, whereas the outside-in barrier was unaffected. Keratinocytes isolated from these mice showed strongly reduced intercellular cohesion, delayed tight junction formation, and reduced transepithelial resistance and reduced proliferation rates. Our study shows a nonredundant and essential role of PKP1 in desmosome and tight junction function and supports a role of PKP1 in growth control, a function that is crucial in wound healing and epidermal carcinogenesis. PMID:27033150

  3. Conducting polyaniline nanowire electrode junction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaikwad, Sumedh; Bodkhe, Gajanan; Deshmukh, Megha; Patil, Harshada; Rushi, Arti; Shirsat, Mahendra D.; Koinkar, Pankaj; Kim, Yun-Hae; Mulchandani, Ashok

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, a synthesis of conducting polyaniline nanowires electrode junction (CPNEJ) has been reported. Conducting polyaniline nanowires electrode junction on Si/SiO2 substrate (having 3 μm gap between two gold microelectrodes) is prepared. Polyaniline nanowires with diameter (ca. 140 nm to 160 nm) were synthesized by one step electrochemical polymerization using galvanostatic (constant current) technique to bridge this gap. The surface morphology of CPNEJ was studied by scanning electron microscope (SEM). The synthesized CPNEJ is an excellent platform for biosensor applications.

  4. Glucose Transporters are Abundant in Cells with "Occluding" Junctions at the Blood-Eye Barriers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harik, Sami I.; Kalaria, Rajesh N.; Whitney, Paul M.; Andersson, Lars; Lundahl, Per; Ledbetter, Steven R.; Perry, George

    1990-06-01

    We studied the distribution of the "erythroid/brain" glucose transporter protein in the human and rat eye by immunocytochemistry with monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies to the C terminus of the human erythrocyte glucose transporter. We found intense immunocytochemical staining in the endothelium of microvessels of the retina, optic nerve, and iris but not in microvessels of the choroid, ciliary body, sclera, and other retro-orbital tissues. In addition, we found marked immunocytochemical staining of retinal pigment epithelium, ciliary body epithelium, and posterior epithelium of the iris. The common feature of all those endothelial and epithelial cells that stained intensely for the glucose transporter is the presence of "occluding" intercellular junctions, which constitute the anatomical bases of the blood-eye barriers. We propose that a high density of the glucose transporter is a biochemical concomitant of epithelial and endothelial cells with barrier characteristics, at least in tissues that have a high metabolic requirement for glucose.

  5. Adherens Junction and E-Cadherin complex regulation by epithelial polarity.

    PubMed

    Coopman, Peter; Djiane, Alexandre

    2016-09-01

    E-Cadherin-based Adherens Junctions (AJs) are a defining feature of all epithelial sheets. Through the homophilic association of E-Cadherin molecules expressed on neighboring cells, they ensure intercellular adhesion amongst epithelial cells, and regulate many key aspects of epithelial biology. While their adhesive role requires these structures to remain stable, AJs are also extremely plastic. This plasticity allows for the adaptation of the cell to its changing environment: changes in neighbors after cell division, cell death, or cell movement, and changes in cell shape during differentiation. In this review we focus on the recent advances highlighting the critical role of the apico-basal polarity machinery, and in particular of the Par3/Bazooka scaffold, in the regulation and remodeling of AJs. We propose that by regulating key phosphorylation events on the core E-Cadherin complex components, Par3 and epithelial polarity promote meta-stable protein complexes governing the correct formation, localization, and functioning of AJ. PMID:27151512

  6. Glucose transporters are abundant in cells with "occluding" junctions at the blood-eye barriers.

    PubMed Central

    Harik, S I; Kalaria, R N; Whitney, P M; Andersson, L; Lundahl, P; Ledbetter, S R; Perry, G

    1990-01-01

    We studied the distribution of the "erythroid/brain" glucose transporter protein in the human and rat eye by immunocytochemistry with monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies to the C terminus of the human erythrocyte glucose transporter. We found intense immunocytochemical staining in the endothelium of microvessels of the retina, optic nerve, and iris but not in microvessels of the choroid, ciliary body, sclera, and other retro-orbital tissues. In addition, we found marked immunocytochemical staining of retinal pigment epithelium, ciliary body epithelium, and posterior epithelium of the iris. The common feature of all those endothelial and epithelial cells that stained intensely for the glucose transporter is the presence of "occluding" intercellular junctions, which constitute the anatomical bases of the blood-eye barriers. We propose that a high density of the glucose transporter is a biochemical concomitant of epithelial and endothelial cells with barrier characteristics, at least in tissues that have a high metabolic requirement for glucose. Images PMID:2190218

  7. Furnace assembly

    DOEpatents

    Panayotou, Nicholas F.; Green, Donald R.; Price, Larry S.

    1985-01-01

    A method of and apparatus for heating test specimens to desired elevated temperatures for irradiation by a high energy neutron source. A furnace assembly is provided for heating two separate groups of specimens to substantially different, elevated, isothermal temperatures in a high vacuum environment while positioning the two specimen groups symmetrically at equivalent neutron irradiating positions.

  8. Furnace assembly

    DOEpatents

    Panayotou, N.F.; Green, D.R.; Price, L.S.

    A method of and apparatus for heating test specimens to desired elevated temperatures for irradiation by a high energy neutron source. A furnace assembly is provided for heating two separate groups of specimens to substantially different, elevated, isothermal temperatures in a high vacuum environment while positioning the two specimen groups symmetrically at equivalent neutron irradiating positions.

  9. Simple Electronic Analog of a Josephson Junction.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henry, R. W.; And Others

    1981-01-01

    Demonstrates that an electronic Josephson junction analog constructed from three integrated circuits plus an external reference oscillator can exhibit many of the circuit phenomena of a real Josephson junction. Includes computer and other applications of the analog. (Author/SK)

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

    PubMed Central

    Koo, Jinmi; Choe, Han Kyoung; Kim, Hee-Dae; Chun, Sung Kook; Son, Gi Hoon

    2015-01-01

    Background In mammals, the master circadian pacemaker is localized in an area of the ventral hypothalamus known as the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). Previous studies have shown that pacemaker neurons in the SCN are highly coupled to one another, and this coupling is crucial for intrinsic self-sustainability of the SCN central clock, which is distinguished from peripheral oscillators. One plausible mechanism underlying the intercellular communication may involve direct electrical connections mediated by gap junctions. Methods We examined the effect of mefloquine, a neuronal gap junction blocker, on circadian Period 2 (Per2) gene oscillation in SCN slice cultures prepared from Per2::luciferase (PER2::LUC) knock-in mice using a real-time bioluminescence measurement system. Results Administration of mefloquine causes instability in the pulse period and a slight reduction of amplitude in cyclic PER2::LUC expression. Blockade of gap junctions uncouples PER2::LUC-expressing cells, in terms of phase transition, which weakens synchrony among individual cellular rhythms. Conclusion These findings suggest that neuronal gap junctions play an important role in synchronizing the central pacemaker neurons and contribute to the distinct self-sustainability of the SCN master clock. PMID:25491783

  11. Layer Engineering of 2D Semiconductor Junctions.

    PubMed

    He, Yongmin; Sobhani, Ali; Lei, Sidong; Zhang, Zhuhua; Gong, Yongji; Jin, Zehua; Zhou, Wu; Yang, Yingchao; Zhang, Yuan; Wang, Xifan; Yakobson, Boris; Vajtai, Robert; Halas, Naomi J; Li, Bo; Xie, Erqing; Ajayan, Pulickel

    2016-07-01

    A new concept for junction fabrication by connecting multiple regions with varying layer thicknesses, based on the thickness dependence, is demonstrated. This type of junction is only possible in super-thin-layered 2D materials, and exhibits similar characteristics as p-n junctions. Rectification and photovoltaic effects are observed in chemically homogeneous MoSe2 junctions between domains of different thicknesses. PMID:27136275

  12. Measurement of tunnel junction resistance during formation

    SciTech Connect

    Barber, W.C.; Johnson, R.T.; Lee, J.S.; Laws, K.E.; Bland, R.W. )

    1993-11-01

    The authors have measured the characteristics of aluminum tunnel junctions during and immediately after the formation of the junction. This has permitted us to observe changes in the oxide barrier, in vacuum and in air. By observing the barrier resistance during sputtering, they were able to diagnose and correct problems due to plasma discharges which were damaging the junctions. They report preliminary results from junctions passivated with a silicon nitride cap layer.

  13. Evolution of altruism in spatial prisoner's dilemma: Intra- and inter-cellular interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yokoi, Hiroki; Uehara, Takashi; Sakata, Tomoyuki; Naito, Hiromi; Morita, Satoru; Tainaka, Kei-ichi

    2014-12-01

    Iterated prisoner's dilemma game is carried out on lattice with “colony” structure. Each cell is regarded as a colony which contains plural players with an identical strategy. Both intra- and inter-cellular interactions are assumed. In the former a player plays with all other players in the same colony, while in the latter he plays with one player each from adjacent colonies. Spatial patterns among four typical strategies exhibit various dynamics and winners. Both theory and simulation reveal that All Cooperation (AC) wins, when the members of colony or the intensity of noise increases. This result explains the evolution of altruism in animal societies, even though errors easily occur in animal communications.

  14. Metazoans evolved by taking domains from soluble proteins to expand intercellular communication network.

    PubMed

    Nam, Hyun-Jun; Kim, Inhae; Bowie, James U; Kim, Sanguk

    2015-01-01

    A central question in animal evolution is how multicellular animals evolved from unicellular ancestors. We hypothesize that membrane proteins must be key players in the development of multicellularity because they are well positioned to form the cell-cell contacts and to provide the intercellular communication required for the creation of complex organisms. Here we find that a major mechanism for the necessary increase in membrane protein complexity in the transition from non-metazoan to metazoan life was the new incorporation of domains from soluble proteins. The membrane proteins that have incorporated soluble domains in metazoans are enriched in many of the functions unique to multicellular organisms such as cell-cell adhesion, signaling, immune defense and developmental processes. They also show enhanced protein-protein interaction (PPI) network complexity and centrality, suggesting an important role in the cellular diversification found in complex organisms. Our results expose an evolutionary mechanism that contributed to the development of higher life forms. PMID:25923201

  15. Rhomboid Family Pseudoproteases Use the ER Quality Control Machinery to Regulate Intercellular Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Zettl, Markus; Adrain, Colin; Strisovsky, Kvido; Lastun, Viorica; Freeman, Matthew

    2011-01-01

    Summary Intramembrane proteolysis governs many cellular control processes, but little is known about how intramembrane proteases are regulated. iRhoms are a conserved subfamily of proteins related to rhomboid intramembrane serine proteases that lack key catalytic residues. We have used a combination of genetics and cell biology to determine that these “pseudoproteases” inhibit rhomboid-dependent signaling by the epidermal growth factor receptor pathway in Drosophila, thereby regulating sleep. iRhoms prevent the cleavage of potential rhomboid substrates by promoting their destabilization by endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-associated degradation; this mechanism has been conserved in mammalian cells. The exploitation of the intrinsic quality control machinery of the ER represents a new mode of regulation of intercellular signaling. Inactive cognates of enzymes are common, but their functions are mostly unclear; our data indicate that pseudoenzymes can readily evolve into regulatory proteins, suggesting that this may be a significant evolutionary mechanism. PMID:21439629

  16. Biogenesis, secretion, and intercellular interactions of exosomes and other extracellular vesicles.

    PubMed

    Colombo, Marina; Raposo, Graça; Théry, Clotilde

    2014-01-01

    In the 1980s, exosomes were described as vesicles of endosomal origin secreted from reticulocytes. Interest increased around these extracellular vesicles, as they appeared to participate in several cellular processes. Exosomes bear proteins, lipids, and RNAs, mediating intercellular communication between different cell types in the body, and thus affecting normal and pathological conditions. Only recently, scientists acknowledged the difficulty of separating exosomes from other types of extracellular vesicles, which precludes a clear attribution of a particular function to the different types of secreted vesicles. To shed light into this complex but expanding field of science, this review focuses on the definition of exosomes and other secreted extracellular vesicles. Their biogenesis, their secretion, and their subsequent fate are discussed, as their functions rely on these important processes. PMID:25288114

  17. [Ontogenetic diversity of colonies and intercellular cytoplasmic bridges in the algae of the genuis Volvox].

    PubMed

    Desnitskiĭ, A G

    2014-01-01

    In all representatives of the genus Volvox, cells of cleaving embryos are connected by cytoplasmic bridges, which play an important role in the process of young colony inversion. However, during subsequent development, the intercellular bridges are retained not in all species of Volvox; the occurrence of the bridges in an adult colony correlates withthe small size of mature gonidia (asexual reproductive cells) and with the presence of cell growth in the intervals between divisions. This complex of ontogenetic features is derived and arises independently in three evolutionary lineages of colonial volvocine algae. A putative role of the syncytial state of adult colonies for the evolution of developmental cycles in Volvox is discussed. PMID:25735150

  18. Anaerobic Conditions Induce Expression of Polysaccharide Intercellular Adhesin in Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis

    PubMed Central

    Cramton, Sarah E.; Ulrich, Martina; Götz, Friedrich; Döring, Gerd

    2001-01-01

    Products of the intercellular adhesion (ica) operon in Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis synthesize a linear β-1,6-linked glucosaminylglycan. This extracellular polysaccharide mediates bacterial cell-cell adhesion and is required for biofilm formation, which is thought to increase the virulence of both pathogens in association with prosthetic biomedical implants. The environmental signal(s) that triggers ica gene product and polysaccharide expression is unknown. Here we demonstrate that anaerobic in vitro growth conditions lead to increased polysaccharide expression in both S. aureus and S. epidermidis, although the regulation is less stringent in S. epidermidis. Anaerobiosis also dramatically stimulates ica-specific mRNA expression in ica- and polysaccharide-positive strains of both S. aureus and S. epidermidis. These data suggest a mechanism whereby ica gene expression and polysaccharide production may act as a virulence factor in an anaerobic environment in vivo. PMID:11349079

  19. MODULATION OF N-CADHERIN JUNCTIONS AND THEIR ROLE AS EPICENTERS OF DIFFERENTIATION-SPECIFIC ACTIN REGULATION IN THE DEVELOPING LENS

    PubMed Central

    Leonard, Michelle; Zhang, Liping; Zhai, Ni; Cader, Ahmad; Chan, Yim; Nowak, Roberta B.; Fowler, Velia M.; Menko, A. Sue

    2010-01-01

    Extensive elongation of lens fiber cells is a central feature of lens morphogenesis. Our study investigates the role of N-cadherin junctions in this process in vivo. We investigate both the molecular players involved in N-cadherin junctional maturation and the subsequent function of these junctions as epicenters for the assembly of an actin cytoskeleton that drives morphogenesis. We present the first evidence of nascent cadherin junctions in vivo, and show they are a prominent feature along lateral interfaces of undifferentiated lens epithelial cells. Maturation of these N-cadherin junctions, required for lens cell differentiation, preceded organization of a cortical actin cytoskeleton along the cells’ lateral borders, but was linked to recruitment of α-catenin and dephosphorylation of N-cadherin-linked β-catenin. Biochemical analysis revealed differentiation-specific recruitment of actin regulators cortactin and Arp3 to maturing N-cadherin junctions of differentiating cells, linking N-cadherin junctional maturation with actin cytoskeletal assembly during fiber cell elongation. Blocking formation of mature N-cadherin junctions led to reduced association of α-catenin with N-cadherin, prevented organization of actin along lateral borders of differentiating lens fiber cells and blocked their elongation. These studies provide a molecular link between N-cadherin junctions and the organization of an actin cytoskeleton that governs lens fiber cell morphogenesis in vivo. PMID:20969840

  20. GAP JUNCTION FUNCTION AND CANCER

    EPA Science Inventory

    Gap Junctions (GJs) provide cell-to-cell communication (GJIC) of essential metabolites and ions. Js allow tissues to average responses, clear waste products, and minimize the effects of xenobiotics by dilution and allowing steady-state catabolism. any chemicals can adversely affe...

  1. The Yolla Bolly junction revisited

    SciTech Connect

    Blake, M.C.; Jayko, A.S. ); Jones, D.L. . Dept. of Geology and Geophysics); Engebretson, D.C. . Dept. of Geology)

    1993-04-01

    West of Red Bluff, California, rocks of the northern Coast Ranges, Klamath-Sierra Nevada, and Great Valley provinces come together at what has been called the Yolla Bolly junction. Mapping of the Red Bluff and Willows 1:100,000 quadrangles has greatly clarified the enigmatic features of this complex area. Terranes of the Klamath Mountains and their Cretaceous sedimentary cover have been thrust northwestward over the Elder Creek terrane and Franciscan rocks, north of the left-lateral Cold Fork fault zone. The Condrey Mountain window (Franciscan Pickett Peak terrane) provides a measure of the magnitude of this thrusting (ca 90 km). South of the Cold Fork fault zone, the Franciscan and Elder Creek terranes were driven southeastward as tectonic wedges onto Sierran-Klamath basement. Timing of this scissor-tectonics is not constrained near the junction, but further north in southwest Oregon, Lower Eocene strata were deformed by overthrusting of the Klamath block whereas Upper Eocene strata overlap the thrust, indicating that thrusting occurred between about 52 and 60 Ma. Plate reconstructions for this time interval indicate the close proximity of the Kula-Farallon-North America triple junction and that old (ca 100 m.y.) Farallon lithosphere was being subducted north of the junction whereas to the south, very young (ca 10 m.y.) Kula plate was presumably obducted onto North America.

  2. Improved Solar-Cell Tunnel Junction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Daud, T.; Kachare, A.

    1986-01-01

    Efficiency of multiple-junction silicon solar cells increased by inclusion of p+/n+ tunnel junctions of highly doped GaP between component cells. Relatively low recombination velocity at GaP junction principal reason for recommending this material. Relatively wide band gap also helps increase efficiency by reducing optical losses.

  3. 27 CFR 9.164 - River Junction.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 27 Alcohol, Tobacco Products and Firearms 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false River Junction. 9.164... River Junction. (a) Name. The name of the viticultural area described in this section is “River Junction.” (b) Approved maps. The appropriate maps for determining the boundaries of the River...

  4. 27 CFR 9.164 - River Junction.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 27 Alcohol, Tobacco Products and Firearms 1 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false River Junction. 9.164... River Junction. (a) Name. The name of the viticultural area described in this section is “River Junction.” (b) Approved maps. The appropriate maps for determining the boundaries of the River...

  5. Inhibition of intercellular coupling stabilizes spiral-wave reentry, whereas enhancement of the coupling destabilizes the reentry in favor of early termination.

    PubMed

    Takemoto, Yoshio; Takanari, Hiroki; Honjo, Haruo; Ueda, Norihiro; Harada, Masahide; Kato, Sara; Yamazaki, Masatoshi; Sakuma, Ichiro; Opthof, Tobias; Kodama, Itsuo; Kamiya, Kaichiro

    2012-09-01

    Spiral-wave (SW) reentry is a major organizing principle of ventricular tachycardia/fibrillation (VT/VF). We tested a hypothesis that pharmacological modification of gap junction (GJ) conductance affects the stability of SW reentry in a two-dimensional (2D) epicardial ventricular muscle layer prepared by endocardial cryoablation of Langendorff-perfused rabbit hearts. Action potential signals were recorded and analyzed by high-resolution optical mapping. Carbenoxolone (CBX; 30 μM) and rotigaptide (RG, 0.1 μM) were used to inhibit and enhance GJ coupling, respectively. CBX decreased the space constant (λ) by 36%, whereas RG increased it by 22-24% (n = 5; P < 0.01). During centrifugal propagation, there was a linear relationship between the wavefront curvature (κ) and local conduction velocity (LCV): LCV = LCV(0) - D·κ (D, diffusion coefficient; LCV(0), LCV at κ = 0). CBX decreased LCV(0) and D by 27 ± 3 and 57 ± 3%, respectively (n = 5; P < 0.01). RG increased LCV(0) and D by 18 ± 3 and 54 ± 5%, respectively (n = 5, P < 0.01). The regression lines with and without RG crossed, resulting in a paradoxical decrease of LCV with RG at κ > ~60 cm(-1). SW reentry induced after CBX was stable, and the incidence of sustained VTs (>30 s) increased from 38 ± 4 to 85 ± 4% after CBX (n = 18; P < 0.01). SW reentry induced after RG was characterized by decremental conduction near the rotation center, prominent drift and self-termination by collision with the anatomical boundaries, and the incidence of sustained VTs decreased from 40 ± 5 to 17 ± 6% after RG (n = 13; P < 0.05). These results suggest that decreased intercellular coupling stabilizes SW reentry in 2D cardiac muscle, whereas increased coupling facilitates its early self-termination. PMID:22707561

  6. Physicochemical basis for dilated intercellular spaces in non-erosive acid-damaged rabbit esophageal epithelium.

    PubMed

    Tobey, N A; Gambling, T M; Vanegas, X C; Carson, J L; Orlando, R C

    2008-01-01

    Dilated intercellular spaces (DIS) within esophageal epithelium (EE) is a histopathologic feature of non-erosive reflux disease and early lesion in acid-damaged rabbit EE associated with increased paracellular permeability. Its cause remains unknown, but the lesion's morphology suggests a significant fluid shift into the intercellular spaces (ICS). Since water follows osmotic forces and consequently ion movements, we explored the role of active (ion) transport and ion gradients in its pathogenesis. This was done by quantifying the effect of inhibited active transport and altered ion gradients on electrical resistance (R(T)) and ICS diameter in acid-exposed Ussing-chambered rabbit EE. Compared with normal Ringer, pH 7.5, 30 minutes of luminal HCl (100 mmol/L), pH 1.1, increased permeability (R(T): +5 +/- 4% vs-52 +/- 4%) and ICS diameter (0.25 +/- 0.01 microm vs 0.42 +/- 0.02 microm), but had no effect on cell morphology or diameter. Ouabain pretreatment significantly reduced active transport but had no effect on the acid-induced changes. However, negating the chloride gradient created by luminal HCl either by adding choline chloride, 100 mmol/L, serosally or by replacing luminal HCl, pH 1.1, with luminal H(2)SO(4), pH 1.1, prevented the development of DIS while maintaining the increase in permeability. DIS was also prevented in the presence of a 100 mmol/L (choline) chloride gradient by luminal exposure at neutral pH. DIS in HCl-damaged EE is caused by an H(+)-induced increase in epithelial permeability; this enables Cl(-) to diffuse along its gradient into the ICS, creating an osmotic force for water movement into and (hydrostatic) dilation of the ICS. PMID:18522636

  7. Proteomic analysis of exosomes from nasopharyngeal carcinoma cell identifies intercellular transfer of angiogenic proteins.

    PubMed

    Chan, Yuk-Kit; Zhang, Huoming; Liu, Pei; Tsao, Sai-Wah; Lung, Maria Li; Mak, Nai-Ki; Ngok-Shun Wong, Ricky; Ying-Kit Yue, Patrick

    2015-10-15

    Exosomes, a group of secreted extracellular nanovesicles containing genetic materials and signaling molecules, play a critical role in intercellular communication. During tumorigenesis, exosomes have been demonstrated to promote tumor angiogenesis and metastasis while their biological functions in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) are poorly understood. In this study, we focused on the role of NPC-derived exosomes on angiogenesis. Exosomes derived from the NPC C666-1 cells and immortalized nasopharyngeal epithelial cells (NP69 and NP460) were isolated using ultracentrifugation. The molecular profile and biophysical characteristics of exosomes were verified by Western blotting, sucrose density gradient and electron microscopy. We showed that the C666-1 exosomes (10 and 20 μg/ml) could significantly increase the tubulogenesis, migration and invasion of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) in a dose-dependent manner. Subsequently, an iTRAQ-based quantitative proteomics was used to identify the differentially expressed proteins in C666-1 exosomes. Among the 640 identified proteins, 51 and 89 proteins were considered as up- and down-regulated (≥ 1.5-fold variations) in C666-1 exosomes compared to the normal counterparts, respectively. As expected, pro-angiogenic proteins including intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and CD44 variant isoform 5 (CD44v5) are among the up-regulated proteins, whereas angio-suppressive protein, thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) was down-regulated in C666-1 exosomes. Further confocal microscopic study and Western blotting clearly demonstrated that the alteration of ICAM-1 and TSP-1 expressions in recipient HUVECs are due to internalization of exosomes. Taken together, these data strongly indicated the critical roles of identified angiogenic proteins in the involvement of exosomes-induced angiogenesis, which could potentially be developed as therapeutic targets in future. PMID:25857718

  8. Implications of Intercellular Signaling for Radiation Therapy: A Theoretical Dose-Planning Study

    SciTech Connect

    McMahon, Stephen J.; McGarry, Conor K.; Butterworth, Karl T.; O'Sullivan, Joe M.; Hounsell, Alan R.; Prise, Kevin M.

    2013-12-01

    Purpose: Recent in vitro results have shown significant contributions to cell killing from signaling effects at doses that are typically used in radiation therapy. This study investigates whether these in vitro observations can be reconciled with in vivo knowledge and how signaling may have an impact on future developments in radiation therapy. Methods and Materials: Prostate cancer treatment plans were generated for a series of 10 patients using 3-dimensional conformal therapy, intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), and volumetric modulated arc therapy techniques. These plans were evaluated using mathematical models of survival following modulated radiation exposures that were developed from in vitro observations and incorporate the effects of intercellular signaling. The impact on dose–volume histograms and mean doses were evaluated by converting these survival levels into “signaling-adjusted doses” for comparison. Results: Inclusion of intercellular communication leads to significant differences between the signalling-adjusted and physical doses across a large volume. Organs in low-dose regions near target volumes see the largest increases, with mean signaling-adjusted bladder doses increasing from 23 to 33 Gy in IMRT plans. By contrast, in high-dose regions, there is a small decrease in signaling-adjusted dose due to reduced contributions from neighboring cells, with planning target volume mean doses falling from 74 to 71 Gy in IMRT. Overall, however, the dose distributions remain broadly similar, and comparisons between the treatment modalities are largely unchanged whether physical or signaling-adjusted dose is compared. Conclusions: Although incorporating cellular signaling significantly affects cell killing in low-dose regions and suggests a different interpretation for many phenomena, their effect in high-dose regions for typical planning techniques is comparatively small. This indicates that the significant signaling effects observed in vitro

  9. Cardiac Intercellular Communication: Are myocytes and fibroblasts fair-weather friends?

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Melissa L.; Blaxall, Burns C.

    2012-01-01

    The cardiac fibroblast (CF) has historically been thought of as a quiescent cell of the heart, passively maintaining the extracellular environment for the cardiomyocytes, the functional cardiac cell type. The increasingly appreciated role of the CF, however, extends well beyond matrix production, governing many aspects of cardiac function including cardiac electrophysiology and contractility. Importantly, its contributions to cardiac pathophysiology and pathologic remodeling have created a shift in the field’s focus from the CM to the CF as a therapeutic target in the treatment of cardiac diseases. In response to cardiac injury, the CF undergoes a pathologic phenotypic transition into a myofibroblast, characterized by contractile smooth muscle proteins and upregulation of collagens, matrix proteins, and adhesion molecules. Further, the myofibroblast upregulates expression and secretion of a variety of pro-inflammatory, pro-fibrotic mediators, including cytokines, chemokines, and growth factors. These mediators act in both an autocrine fashion to further activate CFs, as well as in a paracrine manner on both CMs and circulating inflammatory cells to induce myocyte dysfunction and chronic inflammation, respectively. Together, cell-specific cytokine-induced effects exacerbate pathologic remodeling and progression to HF. A better understanding of this dynamic intercellular communication will lead to novel targets for the attenuation of cardiac remodeling. Current strategies aimed at targeting cytokines have been largely unsuccessful in clinical trials, lending insights into ways that such intercellular cross-talk can be more effectively attenuated. This review will summarize the current knowledge regarding CF functions in the heart and will discuss the regulation and signaling behind CF-mediated cytokine production and function. We will then highlight clinical trials that have exploited cytokine-crosstalk in the treatment of heart failure and provide novel strategies

  10. Protein Kinase Cδ-mediated Phosphorylation of Connexin43 Gap Junction Channels Causes Movement within Gap Junctions followed by Vesicle Internalization and Protein Degradation*

    PubMed Central

    Cone, Angela C.; Cavin, Gabriel; Ambrosi, Cinzia; Hakozaki, Hiroyuki; Wu-Zhang, Alyssa X.; Kunkel, Maya T.; Newton, Alexandra C.; Sosinsky, Gina E.

    2014-01-01

    Phosphorylation of gap junction proteins, connexins, plays a role in global signaling events involving kinases. Connexin43 (Cx43), a ubiquitous and important connexin, has several phosphorylation sites for specific kinases. We appended an imaging reporter tag for the activity of the δ isoform of protein kinase C (PKCδ) to the carboxyl terminus of Cx43. The FRET signal of this reporter is inversely related to the phosphorylation of serine 368 of Cx43. By activating PKC with the phorbol ester phorbol 12,13-dibutyrate (PDBu) or a natural stimulant, UTP, time lapse live cell imaging movies indicated phosphorylated Ser-368 Cx43 separated into discrete domains within gap junctions and was internalized in small vesicles, after which it was degraded by lysosomes and proteasomes. Mutation of Ser-368 to an Ala eliminated the response to PDBu and changes in phosphorylation of the reporter. A phosphatase inhibitor, calyculin A, does not change this pattern, indicating PKC phosphorylation causes degradation of Cx43 without dephosphorylation, which is in accordance with current hypotheses that cells control their intercellular communication by a fast and constant turnover of connexins, using phosphorylation as part of this mechanism. PMID:24500718

  11. Intracellular cytoskeleton and junction proteins of endothelial cells in the porcine iris microvasculature.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hongfang; Yu, Paula K; Cringle, Stephen J; Sun, Xinghuai; Yu, Dao-Yi

    2015-11-01

    Recently we reported studies of the iris microvasculature and its endothelial cells using intra-luminal micro-perfusion, fixation, and silver staining, suggesting that the iris vascular endothelium may be crucial for maintaining homeostasis in the ocular anterior segment. Here we present information regarding the intracellular structure and cell junctions of the iris endothelium. Thirty-seven porcine eyes were used for this study. The temporal long posterior ciliary artery was cannulated to assess the iris microvascular network and its endothelium using intra-luminal micro-perfusion, fixation, and staining with phalloidin for intracellular cytoskeleton f-actin, and with antibodies against claudin-5 and VE-cadherin for junction proteins. Nuclei were counterstained with Hoechst. The iris was flat-mounted for confocal imaging. The iris microvasculature was studied for its distribution, branch orders and endothelial morphometrics with endothelial cell length measured for each vessel order. Our results showed that morphometrics of the iris microvasculature was comparable with our previous silver staining. Abundant stress fibres and peripheral border staining were seen within the endothelial cells in larger arteries. An obvious decrease in cytoplasmic stress fibres was evident further downstream in the smaller arterioles, and they tended to be absent from capillaries and veins. Endothelial intercellular junctions throughout the iris vasculature were VE-cadherin and claudin-5 immuno-positive, indicating the presence of both adherent junctions and tight junctions between vascular endothelial cells throughout the iris microvasculature. Unevenness of claudin-5 staining was noted along the endothelial cell borders in almost every order of vessels, especially in veins and small arterioles. Our results suggest that significant heterogeneity of intracellular structure and junction proteins is present in different orders of the iris vasculature in addition to vascular diameter

  12. Binding of sperm protein Izumo1 and its egg receptor Juno drives Cd9 accumulation in the intercellular contact area prior to fusion during mammalian fertilization.

    PubMed

    Chalbi, Myriam; Barraud-Lange, Virginie; Ravaux, Benjamin; Howan, Kevin; Rodriguez, Nicolas; Soule, Pierre; Ndzoudi, Arnaud; Boucheix, Claude; Rubinstein, Eric; Wolf, Jean Philippe; Ziyyat, Ahmed; Perez, Eric; Pincet, Frédéric; Gourier, Christine

    2014-10-01

    Little is known about the molecular mechanisms that induce gamete fusion during mammalian fertilization. After initial contact, adhesion between gametes only leads to fusion in the presence of three membrane proteins that are necessary, but insufficient, for fusion: Izumo1 on sperm, its receptor Juno on egg and Cd9 on egg. What happens during this adhesion phase is a crucial issue. Here, we demonstrate that the intercellular adhesion that Izumo1 creates with Juno is conserved in mouse and human eggs. We show that, along with Izumo1, egg Cd9 concomitantly accumulates in the adhesion area. Without egg Cd9, the recruitment kinetics of Izumo1 are accelerated. Our results suggest that this process is conserved across species, as the adhesion partners, Izumo1 and its receptor, are interchangeable between mouse and human. Our findings suggest that Cd9 is a partner of Juno, and these discoveries allow us to propose a new model of the molecular mechanisms leading to gamete fusion, in which the adhesion-induced membrane organization assembles all key players of the fusion machinery. PMID:25209248

  13. Regulation of Adherens Junctions in Trabecular Meshwork Cells by Rac GTPase and their influence on Intraocular Pressure

    PubMed Central

    Pattabiraman, Padmanabhan P; Epstein, David L; Rao, Ponugoti Vasantha

    2013-01-01

    Intercellular adherens junctions and cell-extracellular matrix interactions are presumed to influence aqueous humor (AH) drainage via the conventional route, however, their direct role in modulation of intraocular pressure (IOP) is not well understood. Here, we investigated the role of Rac GTPase signaling in basal and growth factor-induced formation of adherens junctions in human trabecular meshwork (HTM) cells as compared to human umbilical vascular endothelial cells, and evaluated the effects of inhibition of Rac GTPase activity on IOP in rabbits. Expression of a constitutively active Rac1 GTPase or treatment with platelet derived growth factor (PDGF), a known activator of Rac GTPase, induced formation of β-catenin-based adherens junctions, actin cytoskeletal reorganization and membrane ruffle in HTM cells. In contrast, treatment of HTM cells with inhibitors of Rac GTPase caused cell-cell separation, a decrease in adherens junctions, and reorganization of actin stress fibers to the cell cortical regions and focal adhesion to the cell leading edges. Both, constitutively active Rac1 and PDGF stimulated generation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) in HTM cells, and ROS were found to increase adherens junction formation and transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) in HTM cells. Topical application of Rac GTPase inhibitors (EHT1864 and NSC23766), however, only marginally influenced IOP in rabbit eyes. Taken together, these data reveal that while Rac GTPase signaling plays a significant role in regulation of adherens junctions, ROS production and TEER in cells of the AH outflow pathway, Rac inhibitors showed only a marginal influence on IOP in live rabbits. PMID:24932460

  14. Regulation of Adherens Junctions in Trabecular Meshwork Cells by Rac GTPase and their influence on Intraocular Pressure.

    PubMed

    Pattabiraman, Padmanabhan P; Epstein, David L; Rao, Ponugoti Vasantha

    2013-06-01

    Intercellular adherens junctions and cell-extracellular matrix interactions are presumed to influence aqueous humor (AH) drainage via the conventional route, however, their direct role in modulation of intraocular pressure (IOP) is not well understood. Here, we investigated the role of Rac GTPase signaling in basal and growth factor-induced formation of adherens junctions in human trabecular meshwork (HTM) cells as compared to human umbilical vascular endothelial cells, and evaluated the effects of inhibition of Rac GTPase activity on IOP in rabbits. Expression of a constitutively active Rac1 GTPase or treatment with platelet derived growth factor (PDGF), a known activator of Rac GTPase, induced formation of β-catenin-based adherens junctions, actin cytoskeletal reorganization and membrane ruffle in HTM cells. In contrast, treatment of HTM cells with inhibitors of Rac GTPase caused cell-cell separation, a decrease in adherens junctions, and reorganization of actin stress fibers to the cell cortical regions and focal adhesion to the cell leading edges. Both, constitutively active Rac1 and PDGF stimulated generation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) in HTM cells, and ROS were found to increase adherens junction formation and transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) in HTM cells. Topical application of Rac GTPase inhibitors (EHT1864 and NSC23766), however, only marginally influenced IOP in rabbit eyes. Taken together, these data reveal that while Rac GTPase signaling plays a significant role in regulation of adherens junctions, ROS production and TEER in cells of the AH outflow pathway, Rac inhibitors showed only a marginal influence on IOP in live rabbits. PMID:24932460

  15. Intercellular communication in Arabidopsis thaliana pollen discovered via AHG3 transcript movement from the vegetative cell to sperm

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An Arabidopsis pollen grain (male gametophyte) consists of three cells: the vegetative cell, which forms the pollen tube, and two sperm cells enclosed within the vegetative cell. It is still unclear if there is intercellular communication between the vegetative cell and the sperm cells. Here we show...

  16. qDNAmod: a statistical model-based tool to reveal intercellular heterogeneity of DNA modification from SMRT sequencing data

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Zhixing; Li, Jing; Zhang, Jing-Ren; Zhang, Xuegong

    2014-01-01

    In an isogenic cell population, phenotypic heterogeneity among individual cells is common and critical for survival of the population under different environment conditions. DNA modification is an important epigenetic factor that can regulate phenotypic heterogeneity. The single molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing technology provides a unique platform for detecting a wide range of DNA modifications, including N6-methyladenine (6-mA), N4-methylcytosine (4-mC) and 5-methylcytosine (5-mC). Here we present qDNAmod, a novel bioinformatic tool for genome-wide quantitative profiling of intercellular heterogeneity of DNA modification from SMRT sequencing data. It is capable of estimating proportion of isogenic haploid cells, in which the same loci of the genome are differentially modified. We tested the reliability of qDNAmod with the SMRT sequencing data of Streptococcus pneumoniae strain ST556. qDNAmod detected extensive intercellular heterogeneity of DNA methylation (6-mA) in a clonal population of ST556. Subsequent biochemical analyses revealed that the recognition sequences of two type I restriction–modification (R-M) systems are responsible for the intercellular heterogeneity of DNA methylation initially identified by qDNAmod. qDNAmod thus represents a valuable tool for studying intercellular phenotypic heterogeneity from genome-wide DNA modification. PMID:25404133

  17. Cartwheel assembly

    PubMed Central

    Hirono, Masafumi

    2014-01-01

    The cartwheel is a subcentriolar structure consisting of a central hub and nine radially arranged spokes, located at the proximal end of the centriole. It appears at the initial stage of the centriole assembly process as the first ninefold symmetrical structure. The cartwheel was first described more than 50 years ago, but it is only recently that its pivotal role in establishing the ninefold symmetry of the centriole was demonstrated. Significant progress has since been made in understanding its fine structure and assembly mechanism. Most importantly, the central part of the cartwheel, from which the ninefold symmetry originates, is shown to form by self-association of nine dimers of the protein SAS-6. This finding, together with emerging data on other components of the cartwheel, has opened new avenues in centrosome biology. PMID:25047612

  18. Sensor assembly

    DOEpatents

    Bennett, Thomas E.; Nelson, Drew V.

    2004-04-13

    A ribbon-like sensor assembly is described wherein a length of an optical fiber embedded within a similar lengths of a prepreg tow. The fiber is ""sandwiched"" by two layers of the prepreg tow which are merged to form a single consolidated ribbon. The consolidated ribbon achieving a generally uniform distribution of composite filaments near the embedded fiber such that excess resin does not ""pool"" around the periphery of the embedded fiber.

  19. SLO BK Potassium Channels Couple Gap Junctions to Inhibition of Calcium Signaling in Olfactory Neuron Diversification

    PubMed Central

    Schumacher, Jennifer A.; Wang, Xiaohong; Merrill, Sean A.; Millington, Grethel; Bayne, Brittany; Jorgensen, Erik M.; Chuang, Chiou-Fen

    2016-01-01

    The C. elegans AWC olfactory neuron pair communicates to specify asymmetric subtypes AWCOFF and AWCON in a stochastic manner. Intercellular communication between AWC and other neurons in a transient NSY-5 gap junction network antagonizes voltage-activated calcium channels, UNC-2 (CaV2) and EGL-19 (CaV1), in the AWCON cell, but how calcium signaling is downregulated by NSY-5 is only partly understood. Here, we show that voltage- and calcium-activated SLO BK potassium channels mediate gap junction signaling to inhibit calcium pathways for asymmetric AWC differentiation. Activation of vertebrate SLO-1 channels causes transient membrane hyperpolarization, which makes it an important negative feedback system for calcium entry through voltage-activated calcium channels. Consistent with the physiological roles of SLO-1, our genetic results suggest that slo-1 BK channels act downstream of NSY-5 gap junctions to inhibit calcium channel-mediated signaling in the specification of AWCON. We also show for the first time that slo-2 BK channels are important for AWC asymmetry and act redundantly with slo-1 to inhibit calcium signaling. In addition, nsy-5-dependent asymmetric expression of slo-1 and slo-2 in the AWCON neuron is necessary and sufficient for AWC asymmetry. SLO-1 and SLO-2 localize close to UNC-2 and EGL-19 in AWC, suggesting a role of possible functional coupling between SLO BK channels and voltage-activated calcium channels in AWC asymmetry. Furthermore, slo-1 and slo-2 regulate the localization of synaptic markers, UNC-2 and RAB-3, in AWC neurons to control AWC asymmetry. We also identify the requirement of bkip-1, which encodes a previously identified auxiliary subunit of SLO-1, for slo-1 and slo-2 function in AWC asymmetry. Together, these results provide an unprecedented molecular link between gap junctions and calcium pathways for terminal differentiation of olfactory neurons. PMID:26771544

  20. Antofine-induced connexin43 gap junction disassembly in rat astrocytes involves protein kinase Cβ.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yu-Fang; Liao, Chih-Kai; Lin, Jau-Chen; Jow, Guey-Mei; Wang, Hwai-Shi; Wu, Jiahn-Chun

    2013-03-01

    Antofine, a phenanthroindolizidine alkaloid derived from Cryptocaryachinensis and Ficusseptica in the Asclepiadaceae milkweed family, is cytotoxic for various cancer cell lines. In this study, we demonstrated that treatment of rat primary astrocytes with antofine induced dose-dependent inhibition of gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC), as assessed by scrape-loading 6-carboxyfluorescein dye transfer. Levels of Cx43 protein were also decreased in a dose- and time-dependent manner following antofine treatment. Double-labeling immunofluorescence microscopy showed that antofine (10ng/ml) induced endocytosis of surface gap junctions into the cytoplasm, where Cx43 was co-localized with the early endosome marker EEA1. Inhibition of lysosomes or proteasomes by co-treatment with antofine and their respective specific inhibitors, NH4Cl or MG132, partially inhibited the antofine-induced decrease in Cx43 protein levels, but did not inhibit the antofine-induced inhibition of GJIC. After 30min of treatment, antofine induced a rapid increase in the intracellular Ca(2+) concentration and activation of protein kinase C (PKC)α/βII, which was maintained for at least 6h. Co-treatment of astrocytes with antofine and the intracellular Ca(2+) chelator BAPTA-AM prevented downregulation of Cx43 and inhibition of GJIC. Moreover, co-treatment with antofine and a specific PKCβ inhibitor prevented endocytosis of gap junctions, downregulation of Cx43, and inhibition of GJIC. Taken together, these findings indicate that antofine induces Cx43 gap junction disassembly by the PKCβ signaling pathway. Inhibition of GJIC by antofine may undermine the neuroprotective effect of astrocytes in CNS. PMID:23403203

  1. SLO BK Potassium Channels Couple Gap Junctions to Inhibition of Calcium Signaling in Olfactory Neuron Diversification.

    PubMed

    Alqadah, Amel; Hsieh, Yi-Wen; Schumacher, Jennifer A; Wang, Xiaohong; Merrill, Sean A; Millington, Grethel; Bayne, Brittany; Jorgensen, Erik M; Chuang, Chiou-Fen

    2016-01-01

    The C. elegans AWC olfactory neuron pair communicates to specify asymmetric subtypes AWCOFF and AWCON in a stochastic manner. Intercellular communication between AWC and other neurons in a transient NSY-5 gap junction network antagonizes voltage-activated calcium channels, UNC-2 (CaV2) and EGL-19 (CaV1), in the AWCON cell, but how calcium signaling is downregulated by NSY-5 is only partly understood. Here, we show that voltage- and calcium-activated SLO BK potassium channels mediate gap junction signaling to inhibit calcium pathways for asymmetric AWC differentiation. Activation of vertebrate SLO-1 channels causes transient membrane hyperpolarization, which makes it an important negative feedback system for calcium entry through voltage-activated calcium channels. Consistent with the physiological roles of SLO-1, our genetic results suggest that slo-1 BK channels act downstream of NSY-5 gap junctions to inhibit calcium channel-mediated signaling in the specification of AWCON. We also show for the first time that slo-2 BK channels are important for AWC asymmetry and act redundantly with slo-1 to inhibit calcium signaling. In addition, nsy-5-dependent asymmetric expression of slo-1 and slo-2 in the AWCON neuron is necessary and sufficient for AWC asymmetry. SLO-1 and SLO-2 localize close to UNC-2 and EGL-19 in AWC, suggesting a role of possible functional coupling between SLO BK channels and voltage-activated calcium channels in AWC asymmetry. Furthermore, slo-1 and slo-2 regulate the localization of synaptic markers, UNC-2 and RAB-3, in AWC neurons to control AWC asymmetry. We also identify the requirement of bkip-1, which encodes a previously identified auxiliary subunit of SLO-1, for slo-1 and slo-2 function in AWC asymmetry. Together, these results provide an unprecedented molecular link between gap junctions and calcium pathways for terminal differentiation of olfactory neurons. PMID:26771544

  2. Ezrin: a regulator of actin microfilaments in cell junctions of the rat testis.

    PubMed

    Gungor-Ordueri, N Ece; Celik-Ozenci, Ciler; Cheng, C Yan

    2015-01-01

    Ezrin, radixin, moesin and merlin (ERM) proteins are highly homologous actin-binding proteins that share extensive sequence similarity with each other. These proteins tether integral membrane proteins and their cytoplasmic peripheral proteins (e.g., adaptors, nonreceptor protein kinases and phosphatases) to the microfilaments of actin-based cytoskeleton. Thus, these proteins are crucial to confer integrity of the apical membrane domain and its associated junctional complex, namely the tight junction and the adherens junction. Since ectoplasmic specialization (ES) is an F-actin-rich testis-specific anchoring junction-a highly dynamic ultrastructure in the seminiferous epithelium due to continuous transport of germ cells, in particular spermatids, across the epithelium during the epithelial cycle-it is conceivable that ERM proteins are playing an active role in these events. Although these proteins were first reported almost 25 years and have since been extensively studied in multiple epithelia/endothelia, few reports are found in the literature to examine their role in the actin filament bundles at the ES. Studies have shown that ezrin is also a constituent protein of the actin-based tunneling nanotubes (TNT) also known as intercellular bridges, which are transient cytoplasmic tubular ultrastructures that transport signals, molecules and even organelles between adjacent and distant cells in an epithelium to coordinate cell events that occur across an epithelium. Herein, we critically evaluate recent data on ERM in light of recent findings in the field in particular ezrin regarding its role in actin dynamics at the ES in the testis, illustrating additional studies are warranted to examine its physiological significance in spermatogenesis. PMID:25652626

  3. Electrical characterization of metal-molecule-silicon junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, W.; Lee, T.; Kamdar, M.; Reed, M. A.; Stewart, M. P.; Hwang, J.-J.; Tour, J. M.

    2003-04-01

    Direct assembly of molecules onto silicon surfaces is of particular interest for potential employment in hybrid organic-semiconductor devices. In this study, aryl diazonium salts are used to assemble covalently bound molecular groups onto a hydride-passivated, oxide-free n-type Si(111) surface. The reaction of 4-(trimethylsilylethynyl)benzenediazonium tetrafluoroborate generates a molecular layer of 4-(trimethylsilylethynyl)phenylene (TMS-EP) on the Si surface. The monolayer modifies the electrical properties of the interface and exhibits nonlinear current-voltage characteristics, as compared with the ohmic behavior observed from metal- n ++-Si(111) junctions. Results of current-voltage measurements at variable temperatures (from 300 to 10 K) on samples made with the TMS-EP molecules do not show significant thermally-activated transport, indicating tunneling is the dominant transport mechanism for this device structure. The measured data is compared to a tunneling model.

  4. Installation and Assembly, Electrical Ground Support Equipment (GSE), Specification for

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Denson, Erik C.

    2014-01-01

    This specification covers the general workmanship requirements and procedures for the complete installation and assembly of electrical ground support equipment (EGSE) such as terminal distributors, junction boxes, conduit and fittings, cable trays and accessories, interconnecting cables (including routing requirements), motor-control equipment, and necessary hardware as specified by the applicable contract and drawings.

  5. PLEKHA7 Recruits PDZD11 to Adherens Junctions to Stabilize Nectins.

    PubMed

    Guerrera, Diego; Shah, Jimit; Vasileva, Ekaterina; Sluysmans, Sophie; Méan, Isabelle; Jond, Lionel; Poser, Ina; Mann, Matthias; Hyman, Anthony A; Citi, Sandra

    2016-05-20

    PLEKHA7 is a junctional protein implicated in stabilization of the cadherin protein complex, hypertension, cardiac contractility, glaucoma, microRNA processing, and susceptibility to bacterial toxins. To gain insight into the molecular basis for the functions of PLEKHA7, we looked for new PLEKHA7 interactors. Here, we report the identification of PDZ domain-containing protein 11 (PDZD11) as a new interactor of PLEKHA7 by yeast two-hybrid screening and by mass spectrometry analysis of PLEKHA7 immunoprecipitates. We show that PDZD11 (17 kDa) is expressed in epithelial and endothelial cells, where it forms a complex with PLEKHA7, as determined by co-immunoprecipitation analysis. The N-terminal Trp-Trp (WW) domain of PLEKHA7 interacts directly with the N-terminal 44 amino acids of PDZD11, as shown by GST-pulldown assays. Immunofluorescence analysis shows that PDZD11 is localized at adherens junctions in a PLEKHA7-dependent manner, because its junctional localization is abolished by knock-out of PLEKHA7, and is rescued by re-expression of exogenous PLEKHA7. The junctional recruitment of nectin-1 and nectin-3 and their protein levels are decreased via proteasome-mediated degradation in epithelial cells where either PDZD11 or PLEKHA7 have been knocked-out. PDZD11 forms a complex with nectin-1 and nectin-3, and its PDZ domain interacts directly with the PDZ-binding motif of nectin-1. PDZD11 is required for the efficient assembly of apical junctions of epithelial cells at early time points in the calcium-switch model. These results show that the PLEKHA7-PDZD11 complex stabilizes nectins to promote efficient early junction assembly and uncover a new molecular mechanism through which PLEKHA7 recruits PDZ-binding membrane proteins to epithelial adherens junctions. PMID:27044745

  6. Tight Junction Proteins in Human Schwann Cell Autotypic Junctions

    PubMed Central

    Alanne, Maria H.; Pummi, Kati; Heape, Anthony M.; Grènman, Reidar; Peltonen, Juha; Peltonen, Sirkku

    2009-01-01

    Tight junctions (TJs) form physical barriers in various tissues and regulate paracellular transport of ions, water, and molecules. Myelinating Schwann cells form highly organized structures, including compact myelin, nodes of Ranvier, paranodal regions, Schmidt-Lanterman incisures, periaxonal cytoplasmic collars, and mesaxons. Autotypic TJs are formed in non-compacted myelin compartments between adjacent membrane lamellae of the same Schwann cell. Using indirect immunofluorescence and RT-PCR, we analyzed the expression of adherens junction (E-cadherin) and TJ [claudins, zonula occludens (ZO)-1, occludin] components in human peripheral nerve endoneurium, showing clear differences with published rodent profiles. Adult nerve paranodal regions contained E-cadherin, claudin-1, claudin-2, and ZO-1. Schmidt-Lanterman incisures contained E-cadherin, claudin-1, claudin-2, claudin-3, claudin-5, ZO-1, and occludin. Mesaxons contained E-cadherin, claudin-1, claudin-2, claudin-3, ZO-1, and occludin. None of the proteins studied were associated with nodal inter-Schwann cell junctions. Fetal nerve expression of claudin-1, claudin-3, ZO-1, and occludin was predominantly punctate, with a mesaxonal labeling pattern, but paranodal (ZO-1, claudin-3) and Schmidt-Lanterman incisure (claudins-1 and -3) expression profiles typical of compact myelin were visible by gestational week 37. The clear differences observed between human and published rodent nerve profiles emphasize the importance of human studies when translating the results of animal models to human diseases. (J Histochem Cytochem 57:523–529, 2009) PMID:19153196

  7. Acoustic characterization of nanoswitch structures: application to the DNA Holliday Junction.

    PubMed

    Papadakis, George; Tsortos, Achilleas; Gizeli, Electra

    2010-12-01

    A novel biophysical approach in combination with an acoustic device is demonstrated as a sensitive, rapid, and label-free technique for characterizing various structures of the DNA Holliday Junction (J1) nanoswitch. We were successful in discriminating the "closed" from the "open" state, as well as confirming that the digestion of the J1 junction resulted in the two, anticipated, rod-shaped, 20 bp long fragments. Furthermore, we propose a possible structure for the ∼10 nm long (DNA58) component participating in the J1 assembly. This work reveals the potential of acoustic devices as a powerful tool for molecular conformation studies. PMID:21038866

  8. Polarity Proteins as Regulators of Cell Junction Complexes: Implications for Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Bazzoun, Dana; Lelièvre, Sophie; Talhouk, Rabih

    2013-01-01

    The epithelium of multicellular organisms possesses a well-defined architecture, referred to as polarity that coordinates the regulation of essential cell features. Polarity proteins are intimately linked to the protein complexes that make the tight, adherens and gap junctions; they contribute to the proper localization and assembly of these cell-cell junctions within cells and consequently to functional tissue organization. The establishment of cell-cell junctions and polarity are both implicated in the regulation of epithelial modifications in normal and cancer situations. Uncovering the mechanisms through which cell-cell junctions and epithelial polarization are established and how their interaction with the microenvironment direct cell and tissue organization has opened new venues for the development of cancer therapies. In this review, we focus on the breast epithelium to highlight how polarity and cell-cell junction proteins interact together in normal and cancerous contexts to regulate major cellular mechanisms such as migration. The impact of these proteins on epigenetic mechanisms responsible for resetting cells towards oncogenesis is discussed in light of increasing evidence that tissue polarity modulates chromatin function. Finally, we give an overview of recent breast cancer therapies that target proteins involved in cell-cell junctions. PMID:23458609

  9. Ureteropelvic junction disease: diagnostic imaging.

    PubMed

    Maresca, Giulia; Maggi, Fabio; Valentini, Viola

    2002-01-01

    Ureteropelvic junction disease is very frequent in pediatric age. Diagnosis is usually established on sonography; in most cases it is prenatal and confirmed at birth. On sonography, hydronephrosis and the site of obstruction is identified with morphofunctional information on renal parenchyma. In the past, urography was the reference examination for ureteropelvic junction disease, but its use is limited in pediatrics especially in prenatal study for radioprotection as well as for the limited glomerular filtration of neonatal kidney. CT and MRI as second level examinations do not find many indications, while angioscintigraphy is largely used to acquire functional data and, in combination with sonography, is basic for diagnosis as well as in follow-up of operated patients. PMID:12696256

  10. Gap junctions as electrical synapses.

    PubMed

    Bennett, M V

    1997-06-01

    Gap junctions are the morphological substrate of one class of electrical synapse. The history of the debate on electrical vs. chemical transmission is instructive. One lesson is that Occam's razor sometimes cuts too deep; the nervous system does its operations in a number of different ways and a unitarian approach can lead one astray. Electrical synapses can do many things that chemical synapses can do, and do them just as slowly. More intriguing are the modulatory actions that chemical synapses can have on electrical synapses. Voltage dependence provides an important window on structure function relations of the connexins, even where the dependence may have no physiological role. The new molecular approaches will greatly advance our knowledge of where gap junctions occur and permit experimental manipulation with high specificity. PMID:9278865

  11. Josephson junctions and dark energy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jetzer, Philippe; Straumann, Norbert

    2006-08-01

    In a recent paper Beck and Mackey [C. Beck, M.C. Mackey, astro-ph/0603397] argue that the argument we gave in our paper [Ph. Jetzer, N. Straumann, Phys. Lett. B 606 (2005) 77, astro-ph/0411034] to disprove their claim that dark energy can be discovered in the Lab through noise measurements of Josephson junctions is incorrect. In particular, they emphasize that the measured noise spectrum in Josephson junctions is a consequence of the fluctuation dissipation theorem, while our argument was based on equilibrium statistical mechanics. In this note we show that the fluctuation dissipation relation does not depend upon any shift of vacuum (zero-point) energies, and therefore, as already concluded in our previous paper, dark energy has nothing to do with the proposed measurements.

  12. Seebeck effect in molecular junctions.

    PubMed

    Zimbovskaya, Natalya A

    2016-05-11

    Advances in the fabrication and characterization of nanoscale systems presently allow for a better understanding of their thermoelectric properties. As is known, the building blocks of thermoelectricity are the Peltier and Seebeck effects. In the present work we review results of theoretical studies of the Seebeck effect in single-molecule junctions and similar systems. The behavior of thermovoltage and thermopower in these systems is controlled by several factors including the geometry of molecular bridges, the characteristics of contacts between the bridge and the electrodes, the strength of the Coulomb interactions between electrons on the bridge, and of electron-phonon interactions. We describe the impact of these factors on the thermopower. Also, we discuss a nonlinear Seebeck effect in molecular junctions. PMID:27073108

  13. Seebeck effect in molecular junctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimbovskaya, Natalya A.

    2016-05-01

    Advances in the fabrication and characterization of nanoscale systems presently allow for a better understanding of their thermoelectric properties. As is known, the building blocks of thermoelectricity are the Peltier and Seebeck effects. In the present work we review results of theoretical studies of the Seebeck effect in single-molecule junctions and similar systems. The behavior of thermovoltage and thermopower in these systems is controlled by several factors including the geometry of molecular bridges, the characteristics of contacts between the bridge and the electrodes, the strength of the Coulomb interactions between electrons on the bridge, and of electron–phonon interactions. We describe the impact of these factors on the thermopower. Also, we discuss a nonlinear Seebeck effect in molecular junctions.

  14. Dump assembly

    DOEpatents

    Goldmann, L.H.

    1984-12-06

    This is a claim for a dump assembly having a fixed conduit and a rotatable conduit provided with overlapping plates, respectively, at their adjacent ends. The plates are formed with openings, respectively, normally offset from each other to block flow. The other end of the rotatable conduit is provided with means for securing the open end of a filled container thereto. Rotation of the rotatable conduit raises and inverts the container to empty the contents while concurrently aligning the conduit openings to permit flow of material therethrough. 4 figs.

  15. Pushrod assembly

    DOEpatents

    Potter, Jerry D.

    1987-01-01

    A pushrod assembly including a carriage mounted on a shaft for movement therealong and carrying a pushrod engageable with a load to be moved. A magnet is mounted on a supporting bracket for movement along such shaft. Means are provided for adjustably spacing said magnet away from said carriage to obtain a selected magnetic attractive or coupling force therebetween. Movement of the supporting bracket and the magnet carried thereby pulls the carriage along with it until the selected magnetic force is exceeded by a resistance load acting on the carriage.

  16. Shingle assembly

    DOEpatents

    Dinwoodie, Thomas L.

    2007-02-20

    A barrier, such as a PV module, is secured to a base by a support to create a shingle assembly with a venting region defined between the barrier and base for temperature regulation. The first edge of one base may be interengageable with the second edge of an adjacent base to be capable of resisting first and second disengaging forces