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Sample records for progenitor toxin complex

  1. High-resolution crystal structure of HA33 of botulinum neurotoxin type B progenitor toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kwangkook; Lam, Kwok-Ho; Kruel, Anna Magdalena; Perry, Kay; Rummel, Andreas; Jin, Rongsheng

    2014-04-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are produced as progenitor toxin complexes (PTCs) by Clostridium botulinum. The PTCs are composed of BoNT and non-toxic neurotoxin-associated proteins (NAPs), which serve to protect and deliver BoNT through the gastrointestinal tract in food borne botulism. HA33 is a key NAP component that specifically recognizes host carbohydrates and helps enrich PTC on the intestinal lumen preceding its transport across the epithelial barriers. Here, we report the crystal structure of HA33 of type B PTC (HA33/B) in complex with lactose at 1.46Å resolution. The structural comparisons among HA33 of serotypes A-D reveal two different HA33-glycan interaction modes. The glycan-binding pockets on HA33/A and B are more suitable to recognize galactose-containing glycans in comparison to the equivalent sites on HA33/C and D. On the contrary, HA33/C and D could potentially recognize Neu5Ac as an independent receptor, whereas HA33/A and B do not. These findings indicate that the different oral toxicity and host susceptibility observed among different BoNT serotypes could be partly determined by the serotype-specific interaction between HA33 and host carbohydrate receptors. Furthermore, we have identified a key structural water molecule that mediates the HA33/B-lactose interactions. It provides the structural basis for development of new receptor-mimicking compounds, which have enhanced binding affinity with HA33 through their water-displacing moiety. PMID:24631690

  2. Purification of Clostridium botulinum type G progenitor toxin.

    PubMed

    Nukina, M; Mochida, Y; Sakaguchi, S; Sakaguchi, G

    1988-04-01

    Clostridium botulinum type G cultured for 6 days at 30 degrees C in proteose peptone-yeast extract-glucose medium produced toxin of 1.3 x 10(4) LD50/ml. The toxin was precipitated at pH 4.0, extracted with 0.2 M phosphate buffer, pH 6.0, and activated with trypsin. Sonic treatment and trypsinization of the residual precipitate released additional toxin, the toxicity of which corresponded to that detected in whole culture. Activated toxin obtained from the first extract and that from the residual precipitate were combined and purified by salting out, acid precipitation, gel filtration on Sephadex G-200, chromatography on SP-Sephadex, and a second gel filtration on Sephadex G-200. The yield of purified toxin from 10 liters of culture was 22.9 mg an 1.1 X 10(8) mouse ip LD50 with a specific toxicity of 3.0 X 10(7) mouse ip LD50/mg nitrogen. The molecular weight of the toxin was about 500,000, corresponding to that of L toxin of the other types. No M nor LL toxin was detected. PMID:3293334

  3. Purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of an HA17–HA70 (HA2–HA3) complex from Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin

    PubMed Central

    Iwasa, Chikako; Tonozuka, Takashi; Shinoda, Masaya; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Yoshida, Hiromi; Kamitori, Shigehiro; Takao, Toshifumi; Oguma, Keiji; Nishikawa, Atsushi

    2014-01-01

    The haemagglutinin (HA) complex of Clostridium botulinum type C toxin is composed of three types of subcomponents: HA33, HA17 and HA70 (also known as HA1, HA2 and HA3, respectively). Here, a 260 kDa HA17–HA70 complex was crystallized. His-tagged HA17 and maltose-binding-protein-tagged HA70 were expressed in Escherichia coli and their complex was affinity-purified using a combination of amylose resin chromatography and nickel–nitrilotri­acetic acid agarose chromatography. Diffraction data were collected to 8.0 Å resolution and the crystal belonged to the tetragonal space group P41212. The molecular-replacement solution indicated that one molecule of HA17 was bound to each HA70 monomer. PMID:24419620

  4. Molecular assembly of botulinum neurotoxin progenitor complexes.

    PubMed

    Benefield, Desirée A; Dessain, Scott K; Shine, Nancy; Ohi, Melanie D; Lacy, D Borden

    2013-04-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is produced by Clostridium botulinum and associates with nontoxic neurotoxin-associated proteins to form high-molecular weight progenitor complexes (PCs). The PCs are required for the oral toxicity of BoNT in the context of food-borne botulism and are thought to protect BoNT from destruction in the gastrointestinal tract and aid in absorption from the gut lumen. The PC can differ in size and protein content depending on the C. botulinum strain. The oral toxicity of the BoNT PC increases as the size of the PC increases, but the molecular architecture of these large complexes and how they contribute to BoNT toxicity have not been elucidated. We have generated 2D images of PCs from strains producing BoNT serotypes A1, B, and E using negative stain electron microscopy and single-particle averaging. The BoNT/A1 and BoNT/B PCs were observed as ovoid-shaped bodies with three appendages, whereas the BoNT/E PC was observed as an ovoid body. Both the BoNT/A1 and BoNT/B PCs showed significant flexibility, and the BoNT/B PC was documented as a heterogeneous population of assembly/disassembly intermediates. We have also determined 3D structures for each serotype using the random conical tilt approach. Crystal structures of the individual proteins were placed into the BoNT/A1 and BoNT/B PC electron density maps to generate unique detailed models of the BoNT PCs. The structures highlight an effective platform that can be engineered for the development of mucosal vaccines and the intestinal absorption of oral biologics. PMID:23509303

  5. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of the HA3 component of Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Nakamura, Toshio; Tonozuka, Takashi; Kotani, Mao; Obata, Kanae; Oguma, Keiji; Nishikawa, Atsushi

    2007-12-01

    HA3, a 70 kDa haemagglutinating protein, is a precursor form of HA3a and HA3b, the subcomponents of Clostridium botulinum type C 16S progenitor toxin. In this report, recombinant HA3 protein was overexpressed in Escherichia coli, purified and crystallized. HA3, a 70 kDa haemagglutinating protein, is a precursor form of HA3a and HA3b, the subcomponents of Clostridium botulinum type C 16S progenitor toxin. In this report, recombinant HA3 protein was overexpressed in Escherichia coli, purified and crystallized. Diffraction data were collected to 2.6 Å resolution and the crystal belonged to the hexagonal space group P6{sub 3}. Matthews coefficient and self-rotation function calculations indicate that there is probably one molecule of HA3 in the asymmetric unit. A search for heavy-atom derivatives has been undertaken.

  6. Structural Basis of Clostridium perfringens Toxin Complex Formation

    SciTech Connect

    Adams,J.; Gregg, K.; Bayer, E.; Boraston, A.; Smith, S.

    2008-01-01

    The virulent properties of the common human and livestock pathogen Clostridium perfringens are attributable to a formidable battery of toxins. Among these are a number of large and highly modular carbohydrate-active enzymes, including the {mu}-toxin and sialidases, whose catalytic properties are consistent with degradation of the mucosal layer of the human gut, glycosaminoglycans, and other cellular glycans found throughout the body. The conservation of noncatalytic ancillary modules among these enzymes suggests they make significant contributions to the overall functionality of the toxins. Here, we describe the structural basis of an ultra-tight interaction (Ka = 1.44 x 1011 M-1) between the X82 and dockerin modules, which are found throughout numerous C. perfringens carbohydrate-active enzymes. Extensive hydrogen-bonding and van der Waals contacts between the X82 and dockerin modules give rise to the observed high affinity. The {mu}-toxin dockerin module in this complex is positioned {approx}180 relative to the orientation of the dockerin modules on the cohesin module surface within cellulolytic complexes. These observations represent a unique property of these clostridial toxins whereby they can associate into large, noncovalent multitoxin complexes that allow potentiation of the activities of the individual toxins by combining complementary toxin specificities.

  7. Metal Complexes And Free Radical Toxins Produced By Pfiesteria Piscicida

    SciTech Connect

    Moeller, P.D.R.; Beauchesne, K.R.; Huncik, K.M.; Davis, W.C.; Christopher, S.J.; Riggs-Gelasco, P.; Gelasco, A.K.

    2009-06-03

    Metal-containing organic toxins produced by Pfiesteria piscicida were characterized, for the first time, by corroborating data obtained from five distinct instrumental methods: nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS), liquid chromatography particle beam glow discharge mass spectrometry (LC/PB-GDMS), electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR), and X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS). The high toxicity of the metal-containing toxins is due to metal-mediated free radical production. This mode of activity explains the toxicity of Pfiesteria, as well as previously reported difficulty in observing the molecular target, due to the ephemeral nature of radical species. The toxins are highly labile in purified form, maintaining activity for only 2-5 days before all activity is lost. The multiple toxin congeners in active extracts are also susceptible to decomposition in the presence of white light, pH variations, and prolonged heat. These findings represent the first formal isolation and characterization of a radical forming toxic organic-ligated metal complex isolated from estuarine/marine dinoflagellates. These findings add to an increased understanding regarding the active role of metals interacting with biological systems in the estuarine environment, as well as their links and implications to human health.

  8. Metal Complexes and Free Radical Toxins Produced by Pfiesteria piscicida

    SciTech Connect

    Moeller,P.; Beauchesne, K.; Huncik, K.; Davis, W.; Christopher, S.; Riggs-Gelasco, P.; Gelasco, A.

    2007-01-01

    Metal-containing organic toxins produced by Pfiesteria piscicida were characterized, for the first time, by corroborating data obtained from five distinct instrumental methods: nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), liquid chromatography particle beam glow discharge mass spectrometry (LC/PB-GDMS), electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR), and X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS). The high toxicity of the metal-containing toxins is due to metal-mediated free radical production. This mode of activity explains the toxicity of Pfiesteria, as well as previously reported difficulty in observing the molecular target, due to the ephemeral nature of radical species. The toxins are highly labile in purified form, maintaining activity for only 2-5 days before all activity is lost. The multiple toxin congeners in active extracts are also susceptible to decomposition in the presence of white light, pH variations, and prolonged heat. These findings represent the first formal isolation and characterization of a radical forming toxic organic-ligated metal complex isolated from estuarine/marine dinoflagellates. These findings add to an increased understanding regarding the active role of metals interacting with biological systems in the estuarine environment, as well as their links and implications to human health.

  9. Animal Toxins: How is Complexity Represented in Databases?

    PubMed Central

    Jungo, Florence; Estreicher, Anne; Bairoch, Amos; Bougueleret, Lydie; Xenarios, Ioannis

    2010-01-01

    Peptide toxins synthesized by venomous animals have been extensively studied in the last decades. To be useful to the scientific community, this knowledge has been stored, annotated and made easy to retrieve by several databases. The aim of this article is to present what type of information users can access from each database. ArachnoServer and ConoServer focus on spider toxins and cone snail toxins, respectively. UniProtKB, a generalist protein knowledgebase, has an animal toxin-dedicated annotation program that includes toxins from all venomous animals. Finally, the ATDB metadatabase compiles data and annotations from other databases and provides toxin ontology. PMID:22069583

  10. Animal Toxins: How is Complexity Represented in Databases?

    PubMed

    Jungo, Florence; Estreicher, Anne; Bairoch, Amos; Bougueleret, Lydie; Xenarios, Ioannis

    2010-02-01

    Peptide toxins synthesized by venomous animals have been extensively studied in the last decades. To be useful to the scientific community, this knowledge has been stored, annotated and made easy to retrieve by several databases. The aim of this article is to present what type of information users can access from each database. ArachnoServer and ConoServer focus on spider toxins and cone snail toxins, respectively. UniProtKB, a generalist protein knowledgebase, has an animal toxin-dedicated annotation program that includes toxins from all venomous animals. Finally, the ATDB metadatabase compiles data and annotations from other databases and provides toxin ontology. PMID:22069583

  11. The elimination of DNA from the Cry toxin-DNA complex is a necessary step in the mode of action of the Cry8 toxin.

    PubMed

    Ai, Bingjie; Li, Jie; Feng, Dongmei; Li, Feng; Guo, Shuyuan

    2013-01-01

    Several crystal (Cry) proteins are known to occur as DNA-protein complexes. However, the role of the DNA associated with the activated toxin in the mechanism of action of the Cry toxin has long been ignored. Here, we focused on the DNA-activated Cry toxin complex. Both forms of the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins, i.e., with or without bound DNA, were separately obtained. Size-exclusion chromatography analysis indicated that the Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex has a tight or compact structure. The Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex is more likely to move toward the air/water interface and is more hydrophobic than the toxin without DNA. Competitive binding assays indicated that the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins without DNA specifically bind to the midgut of Anomala corpulenta and Holotrichia parallela larvae, respectively. In contrast, the association of DNA with each toxin might result in the nonspecific recognition of the Cry toxin and its target receptor in the insect midgut. The association of the DNA fragment with the Cry8 toxin was shown to protect the Cry protein from digestion by proteases. Based on our results, we propose an additional step in the mechanism of action of the Cry8 toxin and elucidate the function of the associated DNA as well as the importance of the removal of this DNA for the insecticidal activity of the toxin. PMID:24324685

  12. The Elimination of DNA from the Cry Toxin-DNA Complex Is a Necessary Step in the Mode of Action of the Cry8 Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Ai, Bingjie; Li, Jie; Feng, Dongmei; Li, Feng; Guo, Shuyuan

    2013-01-01

    Several crystal (Cry) proteins are known to occur as DNA-protein complexes. However, the role of the DNA associated with the activated toxin in the mechanism of action of the Cry toxin has long been ignored. Here, we focused on the DNA-activated Cry toxin complex. Both forms of the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins, i.e., with or without bound DNA, were separately obtained. Size-exclusion chromatography analysis indicated that the Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex has a tight or compact structure. The Cry8Ca2 toxin-DNA complex is more likely to move toward the air/water interface and is more hydrophobic than the toxin without DNA. Competitive binding assays indicated that the Cry8Ca2 and Cry8Ea1 toxins without DNA specifically bind to the midgut of Anomala corpulenta and Holotrichia parallela larvae, respectively. In contrast, the association of DNA with each toxin might result in the nonspecific recognition of the Cry toxin and its target receptor in the insect midgut. The association of the DNA fragment with the Cry8 toxin was shown to protect the Cry protein from digestion by proteases. Based on our results, we propose an additional step in the mechanism of action of the Cry8 toxin and elucidate the function of the associated DNA as well as the importance of the removal of this DNA for the insecticidal activity of the toxin. PMID:24324685

  13. Botulinum toxin A complex exploits intestinal M cells to enter the host and exert neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Matsumura, Takuhiro; Sugawara, Yo; Yutani, Masahiro; Amatsu, Sho; Yagita, Hideo; Kohda, Tomoko; Fukuoka, Shin-Ichi; Nakamura, Yutaka; Fukuda, Shinji; Hase, Koji; Ohno, Hiroshi; Fujinaga, Yukako

    2015-01-01

    To cause food-borne botulism, botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) in the gastrointestinal lumen must traverse the intestinal epithelial barrier. However, the mechanism by which BoNT crosses the intestinal epithelial barrier remains unclear. BoNTs are produced along with one or more non-toxic components, with which they form progenitor toxin complexes (PTCs). Here we show that serotype A1 L-PTC, which has high oral toxicity and makes the predominant contribution to causing illness, breaches the intestinal epithelial barrier from microfold (M) cells via an interaction between haemagglutinin (HA), one of the non-toxic components, and glycoprotein 2 (GP2). HA strongly binds to GP2 expressed on M cells, which do not have thick mucus layers. Susceptibility to orally administered L-PTC is dramatically reduced in M-cell-depleted mice and GP2-deficient (Gp2(-/-)) mice. Our finding provides the basis for the development of novel antitoxin therapeutics and delivery systems for oral biologics. PMID:25687350

  14. Developmental exposure to T-2 toxin reversibly affects postnatal hippocampal neurogenesis and reduces neural stem cells and progenitor cells in mice.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Takeshi; Abe, Hajime; Kimura, Masayuki; Onda, Nobuhiko; Mizukami, Sayaka; Yoshida, Toshinori; Shibutani, Makoto

    2016-08-01

    To determine the developmental exposure effects of T-2 toxin on postnatal hippocampal neurogenesis, pregnant ICR mice were provided a diet containing T-2 toxin at 0, 1, 3, or 9 ppm from gestation day 6 to day 21 on weaning after delivery. Offspring were maintained through postnatal day (PND) 77 without T-2 toxin exposure. In the hippocampal dentate gyrus of male PND 21 offspring, GFAP(+) and BLBP(+) type-1 stem cells and PAX6(+) and TBR2(+) type-2 progenitor cells decreased in the subgranular zone (SGZ) at 9 and ≥3 ppm, respectively, in parallel with increased apoptosis at ≥3 ppm. In the dentate hilus, reelin(+) γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-ergic interneurons increased at 9 ppm, suggesting reflection of neuronal mismigration. T-2 toxin decreased transcript levels of cholinergic and glutamate receptor subunits (Chrna4, Chrnb2 and Gria2) and glutamate transporter (Slc17a6) in the dentate gyrus, suggesting decreased cholinergic signals on hilar GABAergic interneurons innervating type-2 cells and decreased glutamatergic signals on type-1 and type-2 cells. T-2 toxin decreased SGZ cells expressing stem cell factor (SCF) and increased cells accumulating malondialdehydes. Neurogenesis-related changes disappeared on PND 77, suggesting that T-2 toxin reversibly affects neurogenesis by inducing apoptosis of type-1 and type-2 cells with different threshold levels. Decreased cholinergic and glutamatergic signals may decrease type-2 cells at ≥3 ppm. Additionally, decreased SCF/c-Kit interactions and increased oxidative stress may decrease type-1 and type-2 cells at 9 ppm. The no-observed-adverse-effect level for offspring neurogenesis was determined to be 1 ppm (0.14-0.49 mg/kg body weight/day). PMID:26314264

  15. Staphylococcus aureus In Vitro Secretion of Alpha Toxin (hla) Correlates with the Affiliation to Clonal Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Monecke, Stefan; Müller, Elke; Büchler, Joseph; Stieber, Bettina; Ehricht, Ralf

    2014-01-01

    The alpha toxin of Staphylococcus aureus is a pore forming toxin that penetrates host cell membranes causing osmotic swelling, rupture, lysis and subsequently cell death. Haemolysin alpha is toxic to a wide range of different mammalian cells; i.e., neurotoxic, dermonecrotic, haemolytic, and it can cause lethality in a wide variety of animals. In this study, the in vitro alpha toxin production of 648 previously genotyped isolates of S. aureus was measured quantitatively using antibody microarrays. Isolates originated from medical and veterinary settings and were selected in order to represent diverse clonal complexes and defined clinical conditions. Generally, the production of alpha toxin in vitro is related to the clonal complex affiliation. For clonal complexes CC22, CC30, CC45, CC479, CC705 and others, invariably no alpha toxin production was noted under the given in vitro conditions, while others, such as CC1, CC5, CC8, CC15 or CC96 secreted variable or high levels of alpha toxin. There was no correlation between alpha toxin yield and clinical course of the disease, or between alpha toxin yield and host species. PMID:24940872

  16. A Polychaete's powerful punch: venom gland transcriptomics of Glycera reveals a complex cocktail of toxin homologs.

    PubMed

    von Reumont, Björn M; Campbell, Lahcen I; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-09-01

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. PMID:25193302

  17. Uremic toxins, oxidative stress, and renal fibrosis: an interwined complex.

    PubMed

    Chao, Chia-Ter; Chiang, Chih-Kang

    2015-03-01

    The prevalence of end-stage renal diseases is currently on the rise globally, and finding the way to curb this tide is urgently needed. Tubulointerstitial fibrosis is a common pathway for essentially all the nephropathy categories known to date, and the manifestations of renal fibrosis include excessive deposition of extracellular matrix with distortion of renal microstructures and functional deterioration. Uremic toxins have been gradually found to play an important role in the development of progressive renal fibrosis, with protein-bound indoxyl sulfate, p-cresol, and p-cresyl sulfate receiving the most attention. However, the contribution of oxidative stress among the pathogenesis of uremic toxins and renal fibrosis has not been evaluated much until recently. In this review, we will discuss about the nature and sources of oxidative stress in the kidney and how uremic toxins use oxidative stress to orchestrate the processes of renal fibrosis. PMID:25511523

  18. Molecular assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-12-07

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. Furthermore, the similarity of the general architecture betweenmore » the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex.« less

  19. Molecular assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E

    SciTech Connect

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-12-07

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. Furthermore, the similarity of the general architecture between the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex.

  20. Molecular Assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E

    PubMed Central

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. The similarity of the general architecture between the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex. PMID:26639353

  1. Molecular Assembly of Clostridium botulinum progenitor M complex of type E.

    PubMed

    Eswaramoorthy, Subramaniam; Sun, Jingchuan; Li, Huilin; Singh, Bal Ram; Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is released as a progenitor complex, in association with a non-toxic-non-hemagglutinin protein (NTNH) and other associated proteins. We have determined the crystal structure of M type Progenitor complex of botulinum neurotoxin E [PTC-E(M)], a heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure reveals that the complex exists as a tight, interlocked heterodimer of BoNT and NTNH. The crystal structure explains the mechanism of molecular assembly of the complex and reveals several acidic clusters at the interface responsible for association at low acidic pH and disassociation at basic/neutral pH. The similarity of the general architecture between the PTC-E(M) and the previously determined PTC-A(M) strongly suggests that the progenitor M complexes of all botulinum serotypes may have similar molecular arrangement, although the neurotoxins apparently can take very different conformation when they are released from the M complex. PMID:26639353

  2. The ERdj5-Sel1L complex facilitates cholera toxin retrotranslocation.

    PubMed

    Williams, Jeffrey M; Inoue, Takamasa; Banks, Lindsey; Tsai, Billy

    2013-03-01

    Cholera toxin (CT) traffics from the host cell surface to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), where the toxin's catalytic CTA1 subunit retrotranslocates to the cytosol to induce toxicity. In the ER, CT is captured by the E3 ubiquitin ligase Hrd1 via an undefined mechanism to prepare for retrotranslocation. Using loss-of-function and gain-of-function approaches, we demonstrate that the ER-resident factor ERdj5 promotes CTA1 retrotranslocation, in part, via its J domain. This Hsp70 cochaperone regulates binding between CTA and the ER Hsp70 BiP, a chaperone previously implicated in toxin retrotranslocation. Importantly, ERdj5 interacts with the Hrd1 adaptor Sel1L directly through Sel1L's N-terminal lumenal domain, thereby linking ERdj5 to the Hrd1 complex. Sel1L itself also binds CTA and facilitates toxin retrotranslocation. By contrast, EDEM1 and OS-9, two established Sel1L binding partners, do not play significant roles in CTA1 retrotranslocation. Our results thus identify two ER factors that promote ER-to-cytosol transport of CTA1. They also indicate that ERdj5, by binding to Sel1L, triggers BiP-toxin interaction proximal to the Hrd1 complex. We postulate this scenario enables the Hrd1-associated retrotranslocation machinery to capture the toxin efficiently once the toxin is released from BiP. PMID:23363602

  3. Chemical Derivatization and Purification of Peptide-Toxins for Probing Ion Channel Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Hua, Zhengmao; Kobertz, William R.

    2013-01-01

    Ion channels function as multi-protein complexes made up of ion-conducting α-subunits and regulatory β-subunits. To detect, identify, and quantitate the regulatory β-subunits in functioning K+ channel complexes, we have chemically-derivatized peptide-toxins that specifically react with strategically-placed cysteine residues in the channel complex. Two protein labeling approaches have been developed to derivatize the peptide-toxin, charybdotoxin, with hydrophilic and hydrophobic bismaleimides, and other molecular probes. Using these cysteine-reactive peptide-toxins, we have specifically targeted KCNQ1-KCNE1 K+ channel complexes expressed in both Xenopus oocytes and mammalian cells. The modular design of the reagents should permit this approach to be applied to the many ion channel complexes involved in electrical excitability as well as salt and water homoeostasis. PMID:23494369

  4. “Non-Toxic” Proteins of the Botulinum Toxin Complex Exert In-vivo Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Suzuki, Tomonori; Matsumoto, Takashi; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) causes muscle paralysis and is the most potent toxin in nature. BoNT is associated with a complex of auxiliary “Non-Toxic” proteins, which constitute a large-sized toxin complex (L-TC). However, here we report that the “Non-Toxic” complex of serotype D botulinum L-TC, when administered to rats, exerts in-vivo toxicity on small-intestinal villi. Moreover, Serotype C and D of the “Non-Toxic” complex, but not BoNT, induced vacuole-formation in a rat intestinal epithelial cell line (IEC-6), resulting in cell death. Our results suggest that the vacuole was formed in a manner distinct from the mechanism by which Helicobacter pylori vacuolating toxin (VacA) and Vibrio cholerae haemolysin induce vacuolation. We therefore hypothesise that the serotype C and D botulinum toxin complex is a functional hybrid of the neurotoxin and vacuolating toxin (VT) which arose from horizontal gene transfer from an ancestral BoNT-producing bacterium to a hypothetical VT-producing bacterium. PMID:27507612

  5. "Non-Toxic" Proteins of the Botulinum Toxin Complex Exert In-vivo Toxicity.

    PubMed

    Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Suzuki, Tomonori; Matsumoto, Takashi; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) causes muscle paralysis and is the most potent toxin in nature. BoNT is associated with a complex of auxiliary "Non-Toxic" proteins, which constitute a large-sized toxin complex (L-TC). However, here we report that the "Non-Toxic" complex of serotype D botulinum L-TC, when administered to rats, exerts in-vivo toxicity on small-intestinal villi. Moreover, Serotype C and D of the "Non-Toxic" complex, but not BoNT, induced vacuole-formation in a rat intestinal epithelial cell line (IEC-6), resulting in cell death. Our results suggest that the vacuole was formed in a manner distinct from the mechanism by which Helicobacter pylori vacuolating toxin (VacA) and Vibrio cholerae haemolysin induce vacuolation. We therefore hypothesise that the serotype C and D botulinum toxin complex is a functional hybrid of the neurotoxin and vacuolating toxin (VT) which arose from horizontal gene transfer from an ancestral BoNT-producing bacterium to a hypothetical VT-producing bacterium. PMID:27507612

  6. The occurrence of Photorhabdus-like toxin complexes in Bacillus thuringiensis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recently, genomic sequencing of a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) isolate from our collection revealed the presence of an apparent operon encoding an insecticidal toxin complex (Tca) similar to that first described from the entomopathogen Photorhabdus luminescens. To determine whether these genes are w...

  7. The Protective Antigen Component of Anthrax Toxin Forms Functional Octameric Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Kintzer, Alexander F.; Thoren, Katie L.; Sterling, Harry J.; Dong, Ken C.; Feld, Geoffrey K.; Tang, Iok I.; Zhang, Teri T.; Williams, Evan R.; Berger, James M.; Krantz, Bryan A.

    2009-01-01

    The assembly of bacterial toxins and virulence factors is critical to their function, but the regulation of assembly during infection has not been studied. We begin to address this question using anthrax toxin as a model. The protective antigen (PA) component of the toxin assembles into ring-shaped homooligomers that bind the two other enzyme components of the toxin, lethal factor (LF) and edema factor (EF), to form toxic complexes. To disrupt the host, these toxic complexes are endocytosed, such that the PA oligomer forms a membrane-spanning channel that LF and EF translocate through to enter the cytosol. We show using single-channel electrophysiology that PA channels contain two populations of conductance states, which correspond with two different PA pre-channel oligomers observed by electron microscopy—the well-described heptamer and a novel octamer. Mass spectrometry demonstrates that the PA octamer binds four LFs, and assembly routes leading to the octamer are populated with even-numbered, dimeric and tetrameric, PA intermediates. Both heptameric and octameric PA complexes can translocate LF and EF with similar rates and efficiencies. Here we also report a 3.2-Å crystal structure of the PA octamer. The octamer comprises ∼20−30% of the oligomers on cells, but outside of the cell, the octamer is more stable than the heptamer under physiological pH. Thus the PA octamer is a physiological, stable, and active assembly state capable of forming lethal toxins that may withstand the hostile conditions encountered in the bloodstream. This assembly mechanism may provide a novel means to control cytotoxicity. PMID:19627991

  8. Electron microscopy of complexes of isolated acetylcholine receptor, biotinyl-toxin, and avidin

    SciTech Connect

    Holtzman, E.; Wise, D.; Wall, J.; Karlin, A.

    1982-01-01

    The principal curarimimetic toxin of Naja naja siamensis derivatized with biothinyl groups binds specifically both to acetylcholine receptor, isolated from Torpedo californica electric tissue, and to avidin. Isolated complexes of receptor monomer or dimer, biotinyl-toxin, and avidin were negatively stained and examined in the scanning transmission electron microscope. We measured the angle made by the radius to each avidin bound at the periphery of a monomeric unit in dimer to the axis connecting the centers of the monomers, starting at the crosslink between the monomers. We infer from the distribution of these angles that one toxin binding site is located in the range of 45/sup 0/ to 85/sup 0/ and another at about 100/sup 0/ further from the crosslink between the monomers. Because it is known that there are two toxin binding sites per monomer, associated with the two ..cap alpha.. chains, the bound avidins presumably point to portions of the ..cap alpha.. chains, indicating their positions relative to that portion of the delta chain located at the crosslink between monomers in dimer.

  9. Purification of the Yersinia entomophaga Yen-TC Toxin Complex Using Size Exclusion Chromatography.

    PubMed

    Jones, Sandra A; Hurst, Mark R H

    2016-01-01

    The Yersinia entomophaga toxin complex (Yen-TC) is the bacterium's main virulence determinant. Because of its high insect activity, methods were developed to allow the routine isolation and purification of Yen-TC from an overnight bacterial culture using size exclusion chromatography. Here we outline an overnight purification procedure using a 100-ml culture volume, where approximately 2 mg of Yen-TC, with an approximate purity of 95-98 %, can be routinely obtained. PMID:27565490

  10. Topology of feather melanocyte progenitor niche allows complex pigment patterns to emerge.

    PubMed

    Lin, S J; Foley, J; Jiang, T X; Yeh, C Y; Wu, P; Foley, A; Yen, C M; Huang, Y C; Cheng, H C; Chen, C F; Reeder, B; Jee, S H; Widelitz, R B; Chuong, C M

    2013-06-21

    Color patterns of bird plumage affect animal behavior and speciation. Diverse patterns are present in different species and within the individual. Here, we study the cellular and molecular basis of feather pigment pattern formation. Melanocyte progenitors are distributed as a horizontal ring in the proximal follicle, sending melanocytes vertically up into the epithelial cylinder, which gradually emerges as feathers grow. Different pigment patterns form by modulating the presence, arrangement, or differentiation of melanocytes. A layer of peripheral pulp further regulates pigmentation via patterned agouti expression. Lifetime feather cyclic regeneration resets pigment patterns for physiological needs. Thus, the evolution of stem cell niche topology allows complex pigment patterning through combinatorial co-option of simple regulatory mechanisms. PMID:23618762

  11. A Polychaete’s Powerful Punch: Venom Gland Transcriptomics of Glycera Reveals a Complex Cocktail of Toxin Homologs

    PubMed Central

    von Reumont, Björn M.; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A.; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-01-01

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. PMID:25193302

  12. Identification of the interaction region between hemagglutinin components of the botulinum toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Tomonori; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Hayashi, Shintaro; Miyata, Keita; Inui, Ken; Kondo, Yosuke; Miyazaki, Satoru; Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa

    2014-04-01

    The large toxin complex (L-TC) produced by Clostridium botulinum is formed from the M-TC (BoNT/NTNHA complex) by conjugation of M-TC with HA-33/HA-17 trimer consists of two HA-33 proteins and a single HA-17 protein. This association is mediated by HA-70, which interacts with HA-17. The current study aims to identify the regions of the HA-70 molecule that adhere to the HA-33/HA-17 complex. Products from limited proteolysis of HA-70 were resolved by SDS-PAGE and transferred onto PVDF membranes, where they were probed with HA-33/HA-17 in a far-western blot. Among the HA-70 fragments, HA-33/HA-17 bound to those containing at least the C-terminal half of the HA-70 molecule, but not those carrying the N-terminal half. Additional docking simulation analysis indicated that the HA-70 region Gln420-Tyr575 is responsible for binding to HA-17, which is consistent with the far-western blot data. The findings here reveal additional details concerning the three-dimensional structure of the functional HA sub-complex in the botulinum toxin complex. PMID:24472509

  13. Interaction between mosquito-larvicidal Lysinibacillus sphaericus binary toxin components: analysis of complex formation.

    PubMed

    Kale, Avinash; Hire, Ramesh S; Hadapad, Ashok B; D'Souza, Stanislaus F; Kumar, Vinay

    2013-11-01

    The two components (BinA and BinB) of Lysinibacillus sphaericus binary toxin together are highly toxic to Culex and Anopheles mosquito larvae, and have been employed world-wide to control mosquito borne diseases. Upon binding to the membrane receptor an oligomeric form (BinA2.BinB2) of the binary toxin is expected to play role in pore formation. It is not clear if these two proteins interact in solution as well, in the absence of receptor. The interactions between active forms of BinA and BinB polypeptides were probed in solution using size-exclusion chromatography, pull-down assay, surface plasmon resonance, circular dichroism, and by chemically crosslinking BinA and BinB components. We demonstrate that the two proteins interact weakly with first association and dissociation rate constants of 4.5×10(3) M(-1) s(-1) and 0.8 s(-1), resulting in conformational change, most likely, in toxic BinA protein that could kinetically favor membrane translocation of the active oligomer. The weak interactions between the two toxin components could be stabilized by glutaraldehyde crosslinking. The cross-linked complex, interestingly, showed maximal Culex larvicidal activity (LC50 value of 1.59 ng mL(-1)) reported so far for combination of BinA/BinB components, and thus is an attractive option for development of new bio-pesticides for control of mosquito borne vector diseases. PMID:23974012

  14. The 1.8 Å Cholix Toxin Crystal Structure in Complex with NAD+ and Evidence for a New Kinetic Model

    PubMed Central

    Fieldhouse, Robert J.; Jørgensen, René; Lugo, Miguel R.; Merrill, A. Rod

    2012-01-01

    Certain Vibrio cholerae strains produce cholix, a potent protein toxin that has diphthamide-specific ADP-ribosyltransferase activity against eukaryotic elongation factor 2. Here we present a 1.8 Å crystal structure of cholix in complex with its natural substrate, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+). We also substituted hallmark catalytic residues by site-directed mutagenesis and analyzed both NAD+ binding and ADP-ribosyltransferase activity using a fluorescence-based assay. These data are the basis for a new kinetic model of cholix toxin activity. Further, the new structural data serve as a reference for continuing inhibitor development for this toxin class. PMID:22535961

  15. Attomolar Detection of Botulinum Toxin Type A in Complex Biological Matrices

    PubMed Central

    Bagramyan, Karine; Barash, Jason R.; Arnon, Stephen S.; Kalkum, Markus

    2008-01-01

    Background A highly sensitive, rapid and cost efficient method that can detect active botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) in complex biological samples such as foods or serum is desired in order to 1) counter the potential bioterrorist threat 2) enhance food safety 3) enable future pharmacokinetic studies in medical applications that utilize BoNTs. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe a botulinum neurotoxin serotype A assay with a large immuno-sorbent surface area (BoNT/A ALISSA) that captures a low number of toxin molecules and measures their intrinsic metalloprotease activity with a fluorogenic substrate. In direct comparison with the “gold standard” mouse bioassay, the ALISSA is four to five orders of magnitudes more sensitive and considerably faster. Our method reaches attomolar sensitivities in serum, milk, carrot juice, and in the diluent fluid used in the mouse assay. ALISSA has high specificity for the targeted type A toxin when tested against alternative proteases including other BoNT serotypes and trypsin, and it detects the holotoxin as well as the multi-protein complex form of BoNT/A. The assay was optimized for temperature, substrate concentration, size and volume proportions of the immuno-sorbent matrix, enrichment and reaction times. Finally, a kinetic model is presented that is consistent with the observed improvement in sensitivity. Conclusions/Significance The sensitivity, specificity, speed and simplicity of the BoNT ALISSA should make this method attractive for diagnostic, biodefense and pharmacological applications. PMID:18446228

  16. Structural plasticity and dynamic selectivity of acid-sensing ion channel-spider toxin complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Baconguis, Isabelle; Gouaux, Eric

    2012-07-29

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are voltage-independent, amiloride-sensitive channels involved in diverse physiological processes ranging from nociception to taste. Despite the importance of ASICs in physiology, we know little about the mechanism of channel activation. Here we show that psalmotoxin activates non-selective and Na+-selective currents in chicken ASIC1a at pH7.25 and 5.5, respectively. Crystal structures of ASIC1a–psalmotoxin complexes map the toxin binding site to the extracellular domain and show how toxin binding triggers an expansion of the extracellular vestibule and stabilization of the open channel pore. At pH7.25 the pore is approximately 10Å in diameter, whereas at pH5.5 the pore is largely hydrophobic and elliptical in cross-section with dimensions of approximately 5 by 7Å, consistent with a barrier mechanism for ion selectivity. These studies define mechanisms for activation of ASICs, illuminate the basis for dynamic ion selectivity and provide the blueprints for new therapeutic agents.

  17. X-ray structures of AMPA receptor-cone snail toxin complexes illuminate activation mechanism.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lei; Dürr, Katharina L; Gouaux, Eric

    2014-08-29

    AMPA-sensitive glutamate receptors are crucial to the structural and dynamic properties of the brain, to the development and function of the central nervous system, and to the treatment of neurological conditions from depression to cognitive impairment. However, the molecular principles underlying AMPA receptor activation have remained elusive. We determined multiple x-ray crystal structures of the GluA2 AMPA receptor in complex with a Conus striatus cone snail toxin, a positive allosteric modulator, and orthosteric agonists, at 3.8 to 4.1 angstrom resolution. We show how the toxin acts like a straightjacket on the ligand-binding domain (LBD) "gating ring," restraining the domains via both intra- and interdimer cross-links such that agonist-induced closure of the LBD "clamshells" is transduced into an irislike expansion of the gating ring. By structural analysis of activation-enhancing mutants, we show how the expansion of the LBD gating ring results in pulling forces on the M3 helices that, in turn, are coupled to ion channel gating. PMID:25103405

  18. Purification and characterization of neurotoxin complex from a dual toxin gene containing Clostridium botulinum strain PS-5

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are produced as a toxin complex (TC) which consists of neurotoxin (NT) and neurotoxin associated proteins (NAPs). The characterization of NT in its native state is an essential step for developing diagnostics and therapeutic countermeasures against botulism. The presenc...

  19. Homologues of insecticidal toxin complex genes within a genomic island in the marine bacterium Vibrio parahaemolyticus.

    PubMed

    Tang, Kathy F J; Lightner, Donald V

    2014-10-01

    Three insecticidal toxin complex (tc)-like genes were identified in Vibrio parahaemolyticus 13-028/A3, which can cause acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease in penaeid shrimp. The three genes are a tcdA-like gene (7710 bp), predicted to code for a 284-kDa protein; a tcdB-like gene (4272 bp), predicted to code for a 158-kDa protein; and a tccC3-like gene (2916 bp), predicted to encode a 107-kDa protein. All three predicted proteins contain conserved domains that are characteristic of their respective Tc proteins. By RT-PCR, all three tc-like genes were found to be expressed in this bacterium. Through genome walking and the use of PCR to join contigs surrounding these three genes, a genomic island (87 712 bp, named tc-GIvp) was found on chromosome II localized next to the tRNA Gly. The GC content of this island, which is not found in other Vibrio species, is 40%. The tc-GIvp is characterized to have 60 ORFs encoding regulatory or virulence factors. These include a type 6 secretion protein VgrG, EAL domain-containing proteins, fimbriae subunits and assembly proteins, invasin-like proteins, peptidoglycan-binding proteins, and Tc proteins. The tc-GIvp also contains 21 transposase genes, suggesting that it was acquired through horizontal transfer from other organisms. PMID:25272969

  20. Efficacy and Safety of a New Botulinum Toxin Type A Free of Complexing Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Hyun-Mi; Park, Joo Hyun; Song, Dae Heon; Chung, Myung Eun

    2015-01-01

    MT10107 is botulinum neurotoxin type A derived drug which utilizes the 150 kDa portion without complexing proteins and human serum albumin contents. To evaluate the efficacy and the safety of MT10107, it was compared with onabotulinumtoxinA in this double-blind, randomized controlled trial. Twenty-five healthy males received a randomly selected dose of MT10107 into the extensor digitorum brevis (EDB) muscle of one foot, and an equivalent dose of onabotulinumtoxinA (BOTOX) was injected into the contralateral EDB muscle. While efficacy of the administered substance was determined by measuring paretic effects on the EDB, the local spread of toxin effects was evaluated by the paretic effects on the nearby abductor hallucis (AH) and abductor digiti quinti (ADQ) muscles. Paretic effects were defined as the percentage of reduction of the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) amplitudes, measured at 14, 30, 90 days after the injection, compared to the baseline value. Intergroup (MT10107 and onabotulinumtoxinA) differences were not significant in the percentage reduction of the amplitudes in the EDB muscles. In this study, there was no significant difference in efficacy and safety between the two test drugs. MT10107 may be effective and safe as much as onabotulinumtoxinA to produce the desired paretic effect. PMID:26712786

  1. Lumbar Sympathetic Block with Botulinum Toxin Type B for Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: A Case Study.

    PubMed

    Choi, Eunjoo; Cho, Chan Woo; Kim, Hye Young; Lee, Pyung Bok; Nahm, Francis Sahngun

    2015-01-01

    Lumbar sympathetic block (LSB) is an effective method for relief of sympathetically mediated pain in the lower extremities. To prolong the sympathetic blockade, sympathetic destruction with alcohol or radiofrequency has been used. The pre-ganglionic sympathetic nerves are cholinergic, and botulinum toxin (BTX) has been found to inhibit the release of acetylcholine at the cholinergic nerve terminals. Moreover, BTX type B (BTX-B) is more convenient to use than BTX type A. Based on these findings, we performed LSB on the 2 patients with complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) in the lower extremity. Levobupivacaine 0.25% 5 mL mixed with BTX-B 5,000 IU was given under fluoroscopic guidance. Two months after LSB with BTX-B, pain intensity and the Leeds assessment of neuropathic symptoms and signs (LANSS) score were significantly reduced. Allodynia and coldness disappeared and skin color came back to normal. In conclusion, BTX-B can produce an efficacious and durable sympathetic blocking effect on patients with CRPS. PMID:26431145

  2. Efficacy and Safety of a New Botulinum Toxin Type A Free of Complexing Proteins.

    PubMed

    Oh, Hyun-Mi; Park, Joo Hyun; Song, Dae Heon; Chung, Myung Eun

    2016-01-01

    MT10107 is botulinum neurotoxin type A derived drug which utilizes the 150 kDa portion without complexing proteins and human serum albumin contents. To evaluate the efficacy and the safety of MT10107, it was compared with onabotulinumtoxinA in this double-blind, randomized controlled trial. Twenty-five healthy males received a randomly selected dose of MT10107 into the extensor digitorum brevis (EDB) muscle of one foot, and an equivalent dose of onabotulinumtoxinA (BOTOX) was injected into the contralateral EDB muscle. While efficacy of the administered substance was determined by measuring paretic effects on the EDB, the local spread of toxin effects was evaluated by the paretic effects on the nearby abductor hallucis (AH) and abductor digiti quinti (ADQ) muscles. Paretic effects were defined as the percentage of reduction of the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) amplitudes, measured at 14, 30, 90 days after the injection, compared to the baseline value. Intergroup (MT10107 and onabotulinumtoxinA) differences were not significant in the percentage reduction of the amplitudes in the EDB muscles. In this study, there was no significant difference in efficacy and safety between the two test drugs. MT10107 may be effective and safe as much as onabotulinumtoxinA to produce the desired paretic effect. PMID:26712786

  3. The VapBC1 toxin-antitoxin complex from Mycobacterium tuberculosis: purification, crystallization and X-ray diffraction analysis.

    PubMed

    Lu, Zuokun; Wang, Han; Zhang, Aili; Tan, Yusheng

    2016-06-01

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a major human pathogen, encodes at least 88 toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems. Remarkably, more than half of these modules belong to the VapBC family. Under normal growth conditions, the toxicity of the toxin VapC is neutralized by the protein antitoxin VapB. When bacteria face an unfavourable environment, the antitoxin is degraded and the free toxin VapC targets important cellular processes in order to inhibit cell growth. TA systems function in many biological processes, such as in the stringent response, in biofilm formation and in drug tolerance. To explore the structure of the VapBC1 complex, the toxin VapC1 and the antitoxin VapB1 were separately cloned, co-expressed and crystallized. The best crystal was obtained using a crystallization solution consisting of optimized solution with commercial sparse-matrix screen solutions as additives. The crystal diffracted to a resolution of 2.7 Å and belonged to space group P21, with unit-cell parameters a = 59.3, b = 106.7, c = 250.0 Å, β = 93.75°. PMID:27303903

  4. Structure of the Proteus vulgaris HigB-(HigA)2-HigB toxin-antitoxin complex.

    PubMed

    Schureck, Marc A; Maehigashi, Tatsuya; Miles, Stacey J; Marquez, Jhomar; Cho, Shein Ei; Erdman, Rachel; Dunham, Christine M

    2014-01-10

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems regulate key cellular processes to promote cell survival during periods of stress. During steady-state cell growth, antitoxins typically interact with their cognate toxins to inhibit activity presumably by preventing substrate recognition. We solved two x-ray crystal structures of the Proteus vulgaris tetrameric HigB-(HigA)2-HigB TA complex and found that, unlike most other TA systems, the antitoxin HigA makes minimal interactions with toxin HigB. HigB adopts a RelE family tertiary fold containing a highly conserved concave surface where we predict its active site is located. HigA does not cover the solvent-exposed HigB active site, suggesting that, in general, toxin inhibition is not solely mediated by active site hindrance by its antitoxin. Each HigA monomer contains a helix-turn-helix motif that binds to its own DNA operator to repress transcription during normal cellular growth. This is distinct from antitoxins belonging to other superfamilies that typically only form DNA-binding motifs upon dimerization. We further show that disruption of the HigB-(HigA)2-HigB tetramer to a HigBA heterodimer ablates operator binding. Taken together, our biochemical and structural studies elucidate the novel molecular details of the HigBA TA system. PMID:24257752

  5. The Role of TcdB and TccC Subunits in Secretion of the Photorhabdus Tcd Toxin Complex

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Guowei; Waterfield, Nicholas R.

    2013-01-01

    The Toxin Complex (TC) is a large multi-subunit toxin encoded by a range of bacterial pathogens. The best-characterized examples are from the insect pathogens Photorhabdus, Xenorhabdus and Yersinia. They consist of three large protein subunits, designated A, B and C that assemble in a 5∶1∶1 stoichiometry. Oral toxicity to a range of insects means that some have the potential to be developed as pest control technology. The three subunit proteins do not encode any recognisable export sequences and as such little progress has been made in understanding their secretion. We have developed heterologous TC production and secretion models in E. coli and used them to ascribe functions to different domains of the crucial B+C sub-complex. We have determined that the B and C subunits use a secretion mechanism that is either encoded by the proteins themselves or employ an as yet undefined system common to laboratory strains of E. coli. We demonstrate that both the N-terminal domains of the B and C subunits are required for secretion of the whole complex. We propose a model whereby the N-terminus of the C-subunit toxin exports the B+C sub-complex across the inner membrane while that of the B-subunit allows passage across the outer membrane. We also demonstrate that even in the absence of the B-subunit, that the C-subunit can also facilitate secretion of the larger A-subunit. The recognition of this novel export system is likely to be of importance to future protein secretion studies. Finally, the identification of homologues of B and C subunits in diverse bacterial pathogens, including Burkholderia and Pseudomonas, suggests that these toxins are likely to be important in a range of different hosts, including man. PMID:24098116

  6. Top-down label-free LC-MALDI analysis of the peptidome during neural progenitor cell differentiation reveals complexity in cytoskeletal protein dynamics and identifies progenitor cell markers.

    PubMed

    Maltman, Daniel J; Brand, Sven; Belau, Eckhard; Paape, Rainer; Suckau, Detlev; Przyborski, Stefan A

    2011-10-01

    In the field of stem cell research, there is a strong requirement for the discovery of new biomarkers that more accurately define stem and progenitor cell populations, as well as their differentiated derivatives. The very-low-molecular-weight (<5 kDa) proteome/peptidome remains a poorly investigated but potentially rich source of cellular biomarkers. Here we describe a label-free LC-MALDI-TOF/TOF quantification approach to screen the very-low-molecular-weight proteome, i.e. the peptidome, of neural progenitor cells and derivative populations to identify potential neural stem/progenitor cell biomarkers. Twelve different proteins were identified on the basis of MS/MS analysis of peptides, which displayed differential abundance between undifferentiated and differentiated cultures. These proteins included major cytoskeletal components such as nestin, vimentin, and glial fibrillary acidic protein, which are all associated with neural development. Other cytoskeletal proteins identified were dihydropyrimidinase-related protein 2, prothymosin (thymosin α-1), and thymosin β-10. These findings highlight novel stem cell/progenitor cell marker candidates and demonstrate proteomic complexity, which underlies the limitations of major intermediate filament proteins long established as neural markers. PMID:21761558

  7. Distribution of dystrophin- and utrophin-associated protein complexes (DAPC/UAPC) in human hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Teniente-De Alba, Carmen; Martínez-Vieyra, Ivette; Vivanco-Calixto, Raúl; Galván, Iván J; Cisneros, Bulmaro; Cerecedo, Doris

    2011-10-01

    Hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) are defined by their cardinal properties, such as sustained proliferation, multilineage differentiation, and self-renewal, which give rise to a hierarchy of progenitor populations with more restricted potential lineage, ultimately leading to the production of all types of mature blood cells. HSC are anchored by cell adhesion molecules to their specific microenvironment, thus regulating their cell cycle, while cell migration is essentially required for seeding the HSC of the fetal bone marrow (BM) during development as well as in adult BM homeostasis. The dystrophin-associated protein complex (DAPC) is a large group of membrane-associated proteins linking the cytoskeleton to the extracellular matrix and exhibiting scaffolding, adhesion, and signaling roles in muscle and non-muscle cells including mature blood cells. Because adhesion and migration are mechanisms that influence the fate of the HSC, we explored the presence and the feasible role of DAPC. In this study, we characterized the pattern expression by immunoblot technique and, by confocal microscopy analysis, the cellular distribution of dystrophin and utrophin gene products, and the dystrophin-associated proteins (α-, β-dystroglycan, α-syntrophin, α-dystrobrevin) in relation to actin filaments in freshly isolated CD34+ cells from umbilical cord blood. Immunoprecipitation assays demonstrated the presence of Dp71d/Dp71Δ110m ∼DAPC and Up400/Up140∼DAPC. The subcellular distribution of the two DAPC in actin-based structures suggests their dynamic participation in adhesion and cell migration. In addition, the particular protein pattern expression found in hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells might be indicative of their feasible participation during differentiation. PMID:21623922

  8. Structure of a pore-blocking toxin in complex with a eukaryotic voltage-dependent K+ channel

    PubMed Central

    Banerjee, Anirban; Lee, Alice; Campbell, Ernest; MacKinnon, Roderick

    2013-01-01

    Pore-blocking toxins inhibit voltage-dependent K+ channels (Kv channels) by plugging the ion-conduction pathway. We have solved the crystal structure of paddle chimera, a Kv channel in complex with charybdotoxin (CTX), a pore-blocking toxin. The toxin binds to the extracellular pore entryway without producing discernable alteration of the selectivity filter structure and is oriented to project its Lys27 into the pore. The most extracellular K+ binding site (S1) is devoid of K+ electron-density when wild-type CTX is bound, but K+ density is present to some extent in a Lys27Met mutant. In crystals with Cs+ replacing K+, S1 electron-density is present even in the presence of Lys27, a finding compatible with the differential effects of Cs+ vs K+ on CTX affinity for the channel. Together, these results show that CTX binds to a K+ channel in a lock and key manner and interacts directly with conducting ions inside the selectivity filter. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00594.001 PMID:23705070

  9. Complex Toxin Profile of French Mediterranean Ostreopsis cf. ovata Strains, Seafood Accumulation and Ovatoxins Prepurification

    PubMed Central

    Brissard, Charline; Herrenknecht, Christine; Séchet, Véronique; Hervé, Fabienne; Pisapia, Francesco; Harcouet, Jocelyn; Lémée, Rodolphe; Chomérat, Nicolas; Hess, Philipp; Amzil, Zouher

    2014-01-01

    Ostreopsis cf. ovata produces palytoxin analogues including ovatoxins (OVTXs) and a putative palytoxin (p-PLTX), which can accumulate in marine organisms and may possibly lead to food intoxication. However, purified ovatoxins are not widely available and their toxicities are still unknown. The aim of this study was to improve understanding of the ecophysiology of Ostreopsis cf. ovata and its toxin production as well as to optimize the purification process for ovatoxin. During Ostreopsis blooms in 2011 and 2012 in Villefranche-sur-Mer (France, NW Mediterranean Sea), microalgae epiphytic cells and marine organisms were collected and analyzed both by LC-MS/MS and hemolysis assay. Results obtained with these two methods were comparable, suggesting ovatoxins have hemolytic properties. An average of 223 μg·kg−1 of palytoxin equivalent of whole flesh was found, thus exceeding the threshold of 30 μg·kg−1 in shellfish recommended by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Ostreopsis cells showed the same toxin profile both in situ and in laboratory culture, with ovatoxin-a (OVTX-a) being the most abundant analogue (~50%), followed by OVTX-b (~15%), p-PLTX (12%), OVTX-d (8%), OVTX-c (5%) and OVTX-e (4%). Ostreopsis cf. ovata produced up to 2 g of biomass per L of culture, with a maximum concentration of 300 pg PLTX equivalent cell−1. Thus, an approximate amount of 10 mg of PLTX-group toxins may be produced with 10 L of this strain. Toxin extracts obtained from collected biomass were purified using different techniques such as liquid-liquid partition or size exclusion. Among these methods, open-column chromatography with Sephadex LH20 phase yielded the best results with a cleanup efficiency of 93% and recovery of about 85%, representing an increase of toxin percentage by 13 fold. Hence, this purification step should be incorporated into future isolation exercises. PMID:24828292

  10. Two conformational states of the membrane-associated Bacillus thuringiensis Cry4Ba {delta}-endotoxin complex revealed by electron crystallography: Implications for toxin-pore formation

    SciTech Connect

    Ounjai, Puey; Unger, Vinzenz M.; Sigworth, Fred J.; Angsuthanasombat, Chanan

    2007-10-05

    The insecticidal nature of Cry {delta}-endotoxins produced by Bacillus thuringiensis is generally believed to be caused by their ability to form lytic pores in the midgut cell membrane of susceptible insect larvae. Here we have analyzed membrane-associated structures of the 65-kDa dipteran-active Cry4Ba toxin by electron crystallography. The membrane-associated toxin complex was crystallized in the presence of DMPC via detergent dialysis. Depending upon the charge of the adsorbed surface, 2D crystals of the oligomeric toxin complex have been captured in two distinct conformations. The projection maps of those crystals have been generated at 17 A resolution. Both complexes appeared to be trimeric; as in one crystal form, its projection structure revealed a symmetrical pinwheel-like shape with virtually no depression in the middle of the complex. The other form revealed a propeller-like conformation displaying an obvious hole in the center region, presumably representing the toxin-induced pore. These crystallographic data thus demonstrate for the first time that the 65-kDa activated Cry4Ba toxin in association with lipid membranes could exist in at least two different trimeric conformations, conceivably implying the closed and open states of the pore.

  11. Field evaluation against Aedes aegypti larvae of aluminum-carboxymethylcellulose-encapsulated spore-toxin complex formulation of Bacillus thuringiensis serovar israelensis.

    PubMed

    Aguilar-Meza, O; Ramírez-Suero, M; Bernal, J S; Ramírez-Lepe, M

    2010-06-01

    The insecticidal activity after field exposure of an aluminum-carboxymethylcellulose microencapsulated formulation of Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) spore-toxin complex, with malachite green as photoprotective agent, was evaluated using third-instar Aedes aegypti (L.) larvae in laboratory bioassays in Veracruz, México. Four insecticide treatments and an untreated control were compared at low and high doses over 96 d of field exposure under full sun or full shade conditions: 1) microencapsulated Bti spore-toxin complex, 2) nonmicroencapsulated Bti spore-toxin complex, 3) a commercial Bti formulation, 4) a commercial formulation of temephos, and 5) an untreated control. The low and high doses corresponded to the LC50 and LC90 concentrations for the Bti insecticides and to 0.5 and 1.0 mg/liter for temephos; the corresponding values for the microencapsulated Bti and commercial Bti, estimated in this study, were 0.061 and 0.14 mg/ml and 0.13 and 0.30 mg/ml, respectively. Overall, the study demonstrated that microencapsulation with aluminum-carboxymethylcellulose improved the activity against Ae. aegypti larvae of B. t. israelensis spore-toxin complex over that of a nonmicroencapsulated spore-toxin complex and that the improvement was particularly important under full sun and high dose. Moreover, insecticidal activity of the microencapsulated B. thuringiensis israelensis spore-toxin complex was superior to that of a commercial B. thuringiensis israelensis formulation and comparable to that of the chemical insecticide temephos. Finally, it was suggested that the microencapsulated B. thuringiensis israelensis formulation should be evaluated for field use in Veracruz because its activity against Ae. aegypti larvae remained high through 31 d and this would allow halving of the current insecticide application frequency. PMID:20568600

  12. Impact of the nature and size of the polymeric backbone on the ability of heterobifunctional ligands to mediate shiga toxin and serum amyloid p component ternary complex formation.

    PubMed

    Kitov, Pavel I; Paszkiewicz, Eugenia; Sadowska, Joanna M; Deng, Zhicheng; Ahmed, Marya; Narain, Ravin; Griener, Thomas P; Mulvey, George L; Armstrong, Glen D; Bundle, David R

    2011-09-01

    Inhibition of AB(5)-type bacterial toxins can be achieved by heterobifunctional ligands (BAITs) that mediate assembly of supramolecular complexes involving the toxin's pentameric cell membrane-binding subunit and an endogenous protein, serum amyloid P component, of the innate immune system. Effective in vivo protection from Shiga toxin Type 1 (Stx1) is achieved by polymer-bound, heterobifunctional inhibitors-adaptors (PolyBAITs), which exhibit prolonged half-life in circulation and by mediating formation of face-to-face SAP-AB(5) complexes, block receptor recognition sites and redirect toxins to the spleen and liver for degradation. Direct correlation between solid-phase activity and protective dose of PolyBAITs both in the cytotoxicity assay and in vivo indicate that the mechanism of protection from intoxication is inhibition of toxin binding to the host cell membrane. The polymeric scaffold influences the activity not only by clustering active binding fragments but also by sterically interfering with the supramolecular complex assembly. Thus, inhibitors based on N-(2-hydroxypropyl) methacrylamide (HPMA) show significantly lower activity than polyacrylamide-based analogs. The detrimental steric effect can partially be alleviated by extending the length of the spacer, which separates pendant ligand from the backbone, as well as extending the spacer, which spans the distance between binding moieties within each heterobifunctional ligand. Herein we report that polymer size and payload of the active ligand had moderate effects on the inhibitor's activity. PMID:22069757

  13. MUTATIONS IN KATNB1 CAUSE COMPLEX CEREBRAL MALFORMATIONS BY DISRUPTING ASYMMETRICALLY DIVIDING NEURAL PROGENITORS

    PubMed Central

    Mishra-Gorur, Ketu; Çağlayan, Ahmet Okay; Schaffer, Ashleigh E.; Chabu, Chiswili; Henegariu, Octavian; Vonhoff, Fernando; Akgümüş, Gözde Tuğce; Nishimura, Sayoko; Han, Wenqi; Tu, Shu; Baran, Burcin; Gumus, Hakan; Dilber, Cengiz; Zaki, Maha S.; Hossni, Heba AA; Rivière, Jean-Baptiste; Kayserili, Hülya; Spencer, Emily G.; Rosti, Rasim O.; Schroth, Jana; Per, Hüseyin; Cağlar, Caner; Cağlar, Cagri; Dölen, Duygu; Baranoski, Jacob F.; Kumandaş, Sefer; Minja, Frank J.; Erson-Omay, E. Zeynep; Mane, Shrikant M.; Lifton, Richard P.; Xu, Tian; Keshishian, Haig; Dobyns, William B; Chi, Neil C.; Šestan, Nenad; Louvi, Angeliki; Bilgüvar, Kaya; Yasuno, Katsuhito; Gleeson, Joseph G.; Günel, Murat

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY Exome sequencing analysis of over 2,000 children with complex malformations of cortical development identified 5 independent homozygous deleterious mutations in KATNB1, encoding the regulatory subunit of the microtubule severing enzyme katanin. Mitotic spindle formation is defective in patient-derived fibroblasts, a consequence of disrupted interactions of mutant KATNB1 with KATNA1, the catalytic subunit of katanin, and other microtubule associated proteins. Loss of KATNB1 orthologs in zebrafish (katnb1) and flies (kat80) results in microcephaly, recapitulating the human phenotype. In the developing Drosophila optic lobe, kat80 loss specifically affects the asymmetrically dividing neuroblasts, which display supernumerary centrosomes and spindle abnormalities during mitosis, leading to cell cycle progression delays and reduced cell numbers. Furthermore, kat80 depletion results in dendritic arborization defects in sensory and motor neurons, affecting neural architecture. Taken together, we provide insight into the mechanisms by which KATNB1 mutations cause human cerebral cortical malformations, demonstrating its fundamental role during brain development. PMID:25521378

  14. Safe, rapid, and sensitive method of quantitating and distinguishing among Shiga toxins in complex media and human serum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Shiga toxins are primarily responsible for the virulence associated with Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections. The expression of the Shiga toxins is controlled by a phage that infects the host. More than one phage can infect a host and the host can inactivate infecting phages. T...

  15. Hemagglutinin gene shuffling among Clostridium botulinum serotypes C and D yields distinct sugar recognition of the botulinum toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Miyata, Keita; Suzuki, Tomonori; Hayashi, Shintaro; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa

    2015-10-01

    Clostridium botulinum strains produce a large-sized toxin complex (TC) that is composed of botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), non-toxic non-hemagglutinin and three different hemagglutinins (HA-70, HA-33 and HA-17). HA components enhance toxin delivery across the intestinal cell wall in a sugar chain-dependent manner. Here we characterized the sugar recognition of serotype D strain 1873 (D-1873) botulinum L-TC. Most L-TCs produced by serotype C and D strains bind to cells via interactions between HA-33 and cell surface sialo-oligosaccharides. However, like the previously reported L-TC produced by serotype C strain Yoichi (C-Yoichi), D-1873 L-TC binds only to cells that have been treated with neuraminidase, indicating that they recognize asialo-oligosaccharides. The D-1873 HA-33 amino acid sequence is similar to that of C-Yoichi, but had lower similarity to the majority of serotype C and D HA-33s. A comparison of TC component primary structures for 12 serotype C and D strains suggested that at least three types of HA-33 genes exist, and these are shuffled among the serotype C and D strains independently of BoNT serotype. This shuffling produces the distinct sugar recognition of serotype C and D botulinum TCs. PMID:26223883

  16. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of two variants of the Escherichia coli O157 ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex.

    PubMed

    Sterckx, Yann G J; Haesaerts, Sarah; Van Melderen, Laurence; Loris, Remy

    2014-09-01

    The paaR2-paaA2-parE2 operon is a three-component toxin-antitoxin module encoded in the genome of the human pathogen Escherichia coli O157. The toxin (ParE2) and antitoxin (PaaA2) interact to form a nontoxic toxin-antitoxin complex. In this paper, the crystallization and preliminary characterization of two variants of the ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex are described. Selenomethionine-derivative crystals of the full-length ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex diffracted to 2.8 Å resolution and belonged to space group P41212 (or P43212), with unit-cell parameters a = b = 90.5, c = 412.3 Å. It was previously reported that the full-length ParE2-PaaA2 toxin-antitoxin complex forms a higher-order oligomer. In contrast, ParE2 and PaaA213-63, a truncated form of PaaA2 in which the first 12 N-terminal residues of the antitoxin have been deleted, form a heterodimer as shown by analytical gel filtration, dynamic light scattering and small-angle X-ray scattering. Crystals of the PaaA213-63-ParE2 complex diffracted to 2.7 Å resolution and belonged to space group P6122 (or P6522), with unit-cell parameters a = b = 91.6, c = 185.6 Å. PMID:25195911

  17. Botulinum toxin complex increases paracellular permeability in intestinal epithelial cells via activation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase.

    PubMed

    Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Inui, Ken; Hayashi, Shintaro; Miyata, Keita; Suzuki, Tomonori; Ohyama, Tohru; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Niwa, Koichi

    2013-12-30

    Clostridium botulinum produces a large toxin complex (L-TC) that increases paracellular permeability in intestinal epithelial cells by a mechanism that remains unclear. Here, we show that mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) are involved in this permeability increase. Paracellular permeability was measured by FITC-dextran flux through a monolayer of rat intestinal epithelial IEC-6 cells, and MAPK activation was estimated from western blots. L-TC of C. botulinum serotype D strain 4947 increased paracellular dextran flux and activated extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), p38, but not c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) in IEC-6 cells. The permeability increase induced by L-TC was abrogated by the p38 inhibitor SB203580. These results indicate that L-TC increases paracellular permeability by activating p38, but not JNK and ERK. PMID:23884081

  18. Comparison of Colony Hybridization to Phenotype Screening on Washed Sheep's Blood Agar for the Isolation of Shiga toxin Producing Escherichia coli from Complex Matrixes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Purpose of study: Isolating Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) from complex matrixes such as ground beef is a lengthy and laborious process. In our previous studies of STEC present in beef production, colony hybridization was used to identify suspect stx containing colonies for further c...

  19. Crystal structure of the plasmid maintenance system ɛ/ζ: Functional mechanism of toxin ζ and inactivation by ɛ2ζ2 complex formation

    PubMed Central

    Meinhart, Anton; Alonso, Juan C.; Sträter, Norbert; Saenger, Wolfram

    2003-01-01

    Programmed cell death in prokaryotes is frequently found as postsegregational killing. It relies on antitoxin/toxin systems that secure stable inheritance of low and medium copy number plasmids during cell division and kill cells that have lost the plasmid. The broad-host-range, low-copy-number plasmid pSM19035 from Streptococcus pyogenes carries the genes encoding the antitoxin/toxin system ɛ/ζ and antibiotic resistance proteins, among others. The crystal structure of the biologically nontoxic ɛ2ζ2 protein complex at a 1.95-Å resolution and site-directed mutagenesis showed that free ζ acts as phosphotransferase by using ATP/GTP. In ɛ2ζ2, the toxin ζ is inactivated because the N-terminal helix of the antitoxin ɛ blocks the ATP/GTP-binding site. To our knowledge, this is the first prokaryotic postsegregational killing system that has been entirely structurally characterized. PMID:12571357

  20. Characterization of Toxin Complex Gene Clusters and Insect Toxicity of Bacteria Representing Four Subgroups of Pseudomonas fluorescens.

    PubMed

    Rangel, Lorena I; Henkels, Marcella D; Shaffer, Brenda T; Walker, Francesca L; Davis, Edward W; Stockwell, Virginia O; Bruck, Denny; Taylor, Barbara J; Loper, Joyce E

    2016-01-01

    Ten strains representing four lineages of the Pseudomonas fluorescens group (P. chlororaphis, P. corrugata, P. koreensis, and P. fluorescens subgroups) were evaluated for toxicity to the tobacco hornworm Manduca sexta and the common fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. The three strains within the P. chlororaphis subgroup exhibited both oral and injectable toxicity to the lepidopteran M. sexta. All three strains have the gene cluster encoding the FitD insect toxin and a ΔfitD mutant of P. protegens strain Pf-5 exhibited diminished oral toxicity compared to the wildtype strain. Only one of the three strains, P. protegens Pf-5, exhibited substantial levels of oral toxicity against the dipteran D. melanogaster. Three strains in the P. fluorescens subgroup, which lack fitD, consistently showed significant levels of injectable toxicity against M. sexta. In contrast, the oral toxicity of these strains against D. melanogaster was variable between experiments, with only one strain, Pseudomonas sp. BG33R, causing significant levels of mortality in repeated experiments. Toxin complex (Tc) gene clusters, which encode insecticidal properties in Photorhabdus luminescens, were identified in the genomes of seven of the ten strains evaluated in this study. Within those seven genomes, six types of Tc gene clusters were identified, distinguished by gene content, organization and genomic location, but no correlation was observed between the presence of Tc genes and insect toxicity of the evaluated strains. Our results demonstrate that members of the P. fluorescens group have the capacity to kill insects by both FitD-dependent and independent mechanisms. PMID:27580176

  1. Impact of the Nature and Size of the Polymeric Backbone on the Ability of Heterobifunctional Ligands to Mediate Shiga Toxin and Serum Amyloid P Component Ternary Complex Formation

    PubMed Central

    Kitov, Pavel I.; Paszkiewicz, Eugenia; Sadowska, Joanna M.; Deng, Zhicheng; Ahmed, Marya; Narain, Ravin; Griener, Thomas P.; Mulvey, George L.; Armstrong, Glen D.; Bundle, David R.

    2011-01-01

    Inhibition of AB5-type bacterial toxins can be achieved by heterobifunctional ligands (BAITs) that mediate assembly of supramolecular complexes involving the toxin’s pentameric cell membrane-binding subunit and an endogenous protein, serum amyloid P component, of the innate immune system. Effective in vivo protection from Shiga toxin Type 1 (Stx1) is achieved by polymer-bound, heterobifunctional inhibitors-adaptors (PolyBAITs), which exhibit prolonged half-life in circulation and by mediating formation of face-to-face SAP-AB5 complexes, block receptor recognition sites and redirect toxins to the spleen and liver for degradation. Direct correlation between solid-phase activity and protective dose of PolyBAITs both in the cytotoxicity assay and in vivo indicate that the mechanism of protection from intoxication is inhibition of toxin binding to the host cell membrane. The polymeric scaffold influences the activity not only by clustering active binding fragments but also by sterically interfering with the supramolecular complex assembly. Thus, inhibitors based on N-(2-hydroxypropyl) methacrylamide (HPMA) show significantly lower activity than polyacrylamide-based analogs. The detrimental steric effect can partially be alleviated by extending the length of the spacer, which separates pendant ligand from the backbone, as well as extending the spacer, which spans the distance between binding moieties within each heterobifunctional ligand. Herein we report that polymer size and payload of the active ligand had moderate effects on the inhibitor’s activity. PMID:22069757

  2. The Staphylococcus aureus lineage-specific markers collagen adhesin and toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 distinguish multilocus sequence typing clonal complexes within spa clonal complexes.

    PubMed

    Deurenberg, Ruud H; Rijnders, Michelle I A; Sebastian, Silvie; Welling, Maaike A; Beisser, Patrick S; Stobberingh, Ellen E

    2009-10-01

    Spa typing/based upon repeat pattern (BURP) sometimes cannot differentiate multilocus sequence typing (MLST) clonal complexes (CCs) within spa-CCs. It has been observed previously that virulence factors, such as collagen adhesin (CNA) and toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 (TSST-1), are associated with certain Staphylococcus aureus lineages. Analysis of methicillin-sensitive and methicillin-resistant S. aureus by spa typing/BURP and detection of CNA and TSST-1 observed an association between CNA and MLST CC1, 12, 22, 30, 45, 51, and 239 and between TSST-1 and MLST CC30. In spa-CC 012, associated with MLST CC7, CC15, and CC30, MLST CC30 could be distinguished from MLST CC7 and CC15 with CNA and TSST-1 as lineage-specific markers. Lineage-specific markers can overcome clustering of nonrelated MLST CCs into 1 spa-CC. PMID:19748421

  3. Conformational divergence in the HA-33/HA-17 trimer of serotype C and D botulinum toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Sagane, Yoshimasa; Hayashi, Shintaro; Akiyama, Tomonori; Matsumoto, Takashi; Hasegawa, Kimiko; Yamano, Akihito; Suzuki, Tomonori; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Yajima, Shunsuke

    2016-08-01

    Clostridium botulinum produces a large toxin complex (L-TC) comprising botulinum neurotoxin associated with auxiliary nontoxic proteins. A complex of 33- and 17-kDa hemagglutinins (an HA-33/HA-17 trimer) enhances L-TC transport across the intestinal epithelial cell layer via binding HA-33 to a sugar on the cell surface. At least two subtypes of serotype C/D HA-33 exhibit differing preferences for the sugars sialic acid and galactose. Here, we compared the three-dimensional structures of the galactose-binding HA-33 and HA-33/HA-17 trimers produced by the C-Yoichi strain. Comparisons of serotype C/D HA-33 sequences reveal a variable region with relatively low sequence similarity across the C. botulinum strains; the variability of this region may influence the manner of sugar-recognition by HA-33. Crystal structures of sialic acid- and galactose-binding HA-33 are broadly similar in appearance. However, small-angle X-ray scattering revealed distinct solution structures for HA-33/HA-17 trimers. A structural change in the C-terminal variable region of HA-33 might cause a dramatic shift in the conformation and sugar-recognition mode of HA-33/HA-17 trimer. PMID:27237978

  4. Toxins from Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Henkel, James S.; Baldwin, Michael R.; Barbieri, Joseph T.

    2010-01-01

    Bacterial toxins damage the host at the site of bacterial infection or distanced from the site of infections. Bacterial toxins can be single proteins or organized as oligomeric protein complexes and are organized with distinct AB structure-function properties. The A domain encodes a catalytic activity; ADP-ribosylation of host proteins is the earliest post-translational modification determine to be performed by bacterial toxin, and now include glucosylation and proteolysis among other s. Bacterial toxins also catalyze the non-covalent modification of host protein function or can modify host cell properties through direct protein-protein interactions. The B domain includes two functional domains: a receptor-binding domain, which defines the tropism of a toxin for a cell and a translocation domain that delivers A domain across a lipid bilayer, either on the plasma membrane or the endosome. Bacterial toxins are often characterized based upon the section mechanism that delivers the toxin out of the bacterium, termed type I–VII. This review will overview the major families of bacterial toxins and will also describe the specific structure-function properties of the botulinum neurotoxins. PMID:20358680

  5. Structure of a bimodular botulinum neurotoxin complex provides insights into its oral toxicity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are highly potent oral poisons produced by Clostridium botulinum. BoNTs are secreted along with several auxiliary proteins forming progenitor toxin complexes (PTC). Here, we report the structure of a ~760 kDa 14-subunit PTC using a combination of X-ray crystallography a...

  6. Progenitor Epithelium

    PubMed Central

    Marty-Santos, Leilani

    2015-01-01

    Insulin-producing β cells within the vertebrate fetal pancreas acquire their fate in a step-wise manner. Whereas the intrinsic factors dictating the transcriptional or epigenetic status of pancreatic lineages have been intensely examined, less is known about cell–cell interactions that might constitute a niche for the developing β cell lineage. It is becoming increasingly clear that understanding and recapitulating these steps may instruct in vitro differentiation of embryonic stem cells and/or therapeutic regeneration. Indeed, directed differentiation techniques have improved since transitioning from 2D to 3D cultures, suggesting that the 3D microenvironment in which β cells are born is critical. However, to date, it remains unknown whether the changing architecture of the pancreatic epithelium impacts the fate of cells therein. An emerging challenge in the field is to elucidate how progenitors are allocated during key events, such as the stratification and subsequent resolution of the pre-pancreatic epithelium, as well as the formation of lumens and branches. Here, we assess the progenitor epithelium and examine how it might influence the emergence of pancreatic multipotent progenitors (MPCs), which give rise to β cells and other pancreatic lineages. PMID:26216134

  7. HCMV Infection of Human Trophoblast Progenitor Cells of the Placenta Is Neutralized by a Human Monoclonal Antibody to Glycoprotein B and Not by Antibodies to the Pentamer Complex

    PubMed Central

    Zydek, Martin; Petitt, Matthew; Fang-Hoover, June; Adler, Barbara; Kauvar, Lawrence M.; Pereira, Lenore; Tabata, Takako

    2014-01-01

    Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is the major viral cause of congenital infection and birth defects. Primary maternal infection often results in virus transmission, and symptomatic babies can have permanent neurological deficiencies and deafness. Congenital infection can also lead to intrauterine growth restriction, a defect in placental transport. HCMV replicates in primary cytotrophoblasts (CTBs), the specialized cells of the placenta, and inhibits differentiation/invasion. Human trophoblast progenitor cells (TBPCs) give rise to the mature cell types of the chorionic villi, CTBs and multi-nucleated syncytiotrophoblasts (STBs). Here we report that TBPCs are fully permissive for pathogenic and attenuated HCMV strains. Studies with a mutant virus lacking a functional pentamer complex (gH/gL/pUL128-131A) showed that virion entry into TBPCs is independent of the pentamer. In addition, infection is blocked by a potent human neutralizing monoclonal antibody (mAb), TRL345, reactive with glycoprotein B (gB), but not mAbs to the pentamer proteins pUL130/pUL131A. Functional studies revealed that neutralization of infection preserved the capacity of TBPCs to differentiate and assemble into trophospheres composed of CTBs and STBs in vitro. Our results indicate that mAbs to gB protect trophoblast progenitors of the placenta and could be included in antibody treatments developed to suppress congenital infection and prevent disease. PMID:24651029

  8. A complex role of anthrax toxin receptor 2 polymorphisms and capillary morphogenesis protein 2 in ankylosing spondylitis pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhijian; Yu, Kun; Dai, Dongfa; Yuan, Fang; Liang, Fei; Liu, Nan; Xi, Yongzhi; Sun, Yu-Ying

    2016-09-01

    This study investigated the role of anthrax toxin receptor 2 (ANTXR2) gene polymorphisms and capillary morphogenesis protein 2 (CMG2) expression in susceptibility and pathogenesis to ankylosing spondylitis (AS) in the Han Chinese in Beijing. A case-control study was performed using 602 AS patient samples meeting the revised New York criterion and 619 matched controls from Han Chinese individuals. Nineteen single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of ANTXR2 genes were selected and genotyped using the Sequenom iPlex platform. Real-time polymerase chain reaction and flow cytometry were performed to investigate the impact of SNP polymorphisms on ANTXR2 transcription and CMG2 expression, respectively. The association of variants with AS was examined with UNPHASED 3.1.5. A novel association was observed between AS and three SNPs in the ANTXR2 gene (rs4690127, rs6823031, and rs4333130; P = 0.004, 0.011, and 0.013, respectively), confirming the association between rs433130 and AS in the Han Chinese. The strongest haplotype association was observed with rs4690127-rs6823031-rs4333130 (P = 2.5 × 10(-4)). rs6534639 and rs4333130 showed a cis-interaction (P = 0.027) in AS. ANTXR2 messenger RNA (mRNA) expression was significantly higher in the AS group than in the control group (P = 0.039). CMG2 expression in the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated group was significantly lower than that in the control group (P = 0.018). This study reports a novel association between ANTXR2 and AS in the Han Chinese. ANTXR2 genetic polymorphisms affect ANTXR2 mRNA transcription and CMG2 expression. The opposing results observed for ANTXR2 transcription and CMG2 expression suggest a complex role of ANTXR2 polymorphisms in AS pathogenesis. PMID:26728147

  9. Two Bacillus sphaericus binary toxins share the midgut receptor binding site: implications for resistance of Culex pipiens complex (Diptera: Culicidae) larvae.

    PubMed

    Silva-Filha, Maria Helena Neves Lobo; Oliveira, Cláudia Maria Fontes de; Regis, Lêda; Yuan, Zhiming; Rico, Clara Martinez; Nielsen-LeRoux, Christina

    2004-12-15

    This work demonstrates that Bin1 and Bin2 toxins, produced by Bacillus sphaericus strains IAB59 and 2362, respectively, share a binding site in midgut brush border membranes (BBMF) from Culex pipiens complex larvae. However, a colony selected with strain IAB59, displaying a resistance ratio of only 42-fold to IAB59, but a 162,000-fold resistance to strain 2362, was found to miss receptors for Bin2 in the BBMF. This correlates with results showing that Bin1, produced in strain IAB59, failed to bind specifically to BBMF from other colony highly resistant to strain 2362. Data indicate the loss of the BBMF bound receptor as a general mechanism of resistance to binary toxins in mosquito. PMID:15598531

  10. Optimal Neutralization of Centruroides noxius Venom Is Understood through a Structural Complex between Two Antibody Fragments and the Cn2 Toxin.

    PubMed

    Riaño-Umbarila, Lidia; Ledezma-Candanoza, Luis M; Serrano-Posada, Hugo; Fernández-Taboada, Guillermo; Olamendi-Portugal, Timoteo; Rojas-Trejo, Sonia; Gómez-Ramírez, Ilse V; Rudiño-Piñera, Enrique; Possani, Lourival D; Becerril, Baltazar

    2016-01-22

    The current trend of using recombinant antibody fragments in research to develop novel antidotes against scorpion stings has achieved excellent results. The polyclonal character of commercial antivenoms, obtained through the immunization of animals and which contain several neutralizing antibodies that recognize different epitopes on the toxins, guarantees the neutralization of the venoms. To avoid the use of animals, we aimed to develop an equivalent recombinant antivenom composed of a few neutralizing single chain antibody fragments (scFvs) that bind to two different epitopes on the scorpion toxins. In this study, we obtained scFv RU1 derived from scFv C1. RU1 showed a good capacity to neutralize the Cn2 toxin and whole venom of the scorpion Centruroides noxius. Previously, we had produced scFv LR, obtained from a different parental fragment (scFv 3F). LR also showed a similar neutralizing capacity. The simultaneous administration of both scFvs resulted in improved protection, which was translated as a rapid recovery of previously poisoned animals. The crystallographic structure of the ternary complex scFv LR-Cn2-scFv RU1 allowed us to identify the areas of interaction of both scFvs with the toxin, which correspond to non-overlapping sites. The epitope recognized by scFv RU1 seems to be related to a greater efficiency in the neutralization of the whole venom. In addition, the structural analysis of the complex helped us to explain the cross-reactivity of these scFvs and how they neutralize the venom. PMID:26589800

  11. Pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Sekura, R.D.; Moss, J.; Vaughan, M.

    1985-01-01

    This book contains 13 selections. Some of the titles are: Genetic and Functional Studies of Pertussis Toxin Substrates; Effect of Pertussis Toxin on the Hormonal Responsiveness of Different Tissues; Extracellular Adenylate Cyclase of Bordetella pertussis; and GTP-Regulatory Proteins are Introcellular Messagers: A Model for Hormone Action.

  12. Long-Term Effects of Botulinum Toxin Complex Type A Injection on Mechano- and Metabo-Sensitive Afferent Fibers Originating from Gastrocnemius Muscle

    PubMed Central

    Caron, Guillaume; Marqueste, Tanguy; Decherchi, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate long term effects of motor denervation by botulinum toxin complex type A (BoNT/A) from Clostridium Botulinum, on the afferent fibers originating from the gastrocnemius muscle of rats. Animals were divided in 2 experimental groups: 1) untreated animals acting as control and 2) treated animals in which the toxin was injected in the left muscle, the latter being itself divided into 3 subgroups according to their locomotor recovery with the help of a test based on footprint measurements of walking rats: i) no recovery (B0), ii) 50% recovery (B50) and iii) full recovery (B100). Then, muscle properties, metabosensitive afferent fiber responses to potassium chloride (KCl) and lactic acid injections and Electrically-Induced Fatigue (EIF), and mechanosensitive responses to tendon vibrations were measured. At the end of the experiment, rats were killed and the toxin injected muscles were weighted. After toxin injection, we observed a complete paralysis associated to a loss of force to muscle stimulation and a significant muscle atrophy, and a return to baseline when the animals recover. The response to fatigue was only decreased in the B0 group. The responses to KCl injections were only altered in the B100 groups while responses to lactic acid were altered in the 3 injected groups. Finally, our results indicated that neurotoxin altered the biphasic pattern of response of the mechanosensitive fiber to tendon vibrations in the B0 and B50 groups. These results indicated that neurotoxin injection induces muscle afferent activity alterations that persist and even worsen when the muscle has recovered his motor activity. PMID:26485650

  13. GSK3β, But Not GSK3α, Inhibits the Neuronal Differentiation of Neural Progenitor Cells As a Downstream Target of Mammalian Target of Rapamycin Complex1

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Jyhyun; Jang, Jiwon; Choi, Jinyong; Lee, Junsub; Oh, Seo-Ho; Lee, Junghun; Yoon, Keejung

    2014-01-01

    Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) acts as an important regulator during the proliferation and differentiation of neural progenitor cells (NPCs), but the roles of the isoforms of this molecule (GSK3α and GSK3β) have not been clearly defined. In this study, we investigated the functions of GSK3α and GSK3β in the context of neuronal differentiation of murine NPCs. Treatment of primary NPCs with a GSK3 inhibitor (SB216763) resulted in an increase in the percentage of TuJ1-positive immature neurons, suggesting an inhibitory role of GSK3 in embryonic neurogenesis. Downregulation of GSK3β expression increased the percentage of TuJ1-positive cells, while knock-down of GSK3α seemed to have no effect. When primary NPCs were engineered to stably express either isoform of GSK3 using retroviral vectors, GSK3β, but not GSK3α, inhibited neuronal differentiation and helped the cells to maintain the characteristics of NPCs. Mutant GSK3β (Y216F) failed to suppress neuronal differentiation, indicating that the kinase activity of GSK3β is important for this regulatory function. Similar results were obtained in vivo when a retroviral vector expressing GSK3β was delivered to E9.5 mouse brains using the ultrasound image-guided gene delivery technique. In addition, SB216763 was found to block the rapamycin-mediated inhibition of neuronal differentiation of NPCs. Taken together, our results demonstrate that GSK3β, but not GSK3α, negatively controls the neuronal differentiation of progenitor cells and that GSK3β may act downstream of the mammalian target of rapamycin complex1 signaling pathway. PMID:24397546

  14. Millipede toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... toxin are: Hydrochloric acid Hydrogen cyanide Organic acids Phenol Cresols Benzoquinones Hydroquinones (in some millipedes) ... with plenty of soap and water. Do NOT use alcohol to wash the area. Wash eyes with ...

  15. Millipede toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... release keeps away most predators. Some large millipede species can secrete these toxins as far as 80 ... reactions are mainly seen from contact with tropical species of millipedes. The outlook may be more serious ...

  16. Marine toxins.

    PubMed

    Whittle, K; Gallacher, S

    2000-01-01

    Seafood products are important both nutritionally and economically. Within Europe, some 12 billion Pounds of fishery products are consumed annually and an enormous variety of species are available. Although seafood is rarely implicated in food poisoning, compared to other food sources, it does provide some specific human health hazards unique to this particular resource. Generally, these are toxins from toxic microscopic algae which accumulate through the food-chain. The toxins can cause various neurological and gastrointestinal illnesses and, potentially, consumers are exposed from seafood produced within Europe, from imported products, or from seafood eaten while travelling abroad. The symptoms of illness which may be encountered, the source and mode of action of the toxins, and some emerging problems are described. European legislation aims to ensure the quality and safety of seafood products by prohibiting sale of some toxic species, setting toxin limits, requiring monitoring and controlling imports. PMID:10885118

  17. Crystal Structure of Botulinum Neurotoxin Type a in Complex With the Cell Surface Co-Receptor GT1b-Insight Into the Toxin-Neuron Interaction

    SciTech Connect

    Stenmark, P.; Dupuy, J.; Inamura, A.; Kiso, M.; Stevens, R.C.

    2009-05-26

    Botulinum neurotoxins have a very high affinity and specificity for their target cells requiring two different co-receptors located on the neuronal cell surface. Different toxin serotypes have different protein receptors; yet, most share a common ganglioside co-receptor, GT1b. We determined the crystal structure of the botulinum neurotoxin serotype A binding domain (residues 873-1297) alone and in complex with a GT1b analog at 1.7 A and 1.6 A, respectively. The ganglioside GT1b forms several key hydrogen bonds to conserved residues and binds in a shallow groove lined by Tryptophan 1266. GT1b binding does not induce any large structural changes in the toxin; therefore, it is unlikely that allosteric effects play a major role in the dual receptor recognition. Together with the previously published structures of botulinum neurotoxin serotype B in complex with its protein co-receptor, we can now generate a detailed model of botulinum neurotoxin's interaction with the neuronal cell surface. The two branches of the GT1b polysaccharide, together with the protein receptor site, impose strict geometric constraints on the mode of interaction with the membrane surface and strongly support a model where one end of the 100 A long translocation domain helix bundle swing into contact with the membrane, initiating the membrane anchoring event.

  18. BOTULINUM TOXIN

    PubMed Central

    Nigam, P K; Nigam, Anjana

    2010-01-01

    Botulinum toxin, one of the most poisonous biological substances known, is a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. C. botulinum elaborates eight antigenically distinguishable exotoxins (A, B, C1, C2, D, E, F and G). All serotypes interfere with neural transmission by blocking the release of acetylcholine, the principal neurotransmitter at the neuromuscular junction, causing muscle paralysis. The weakness induced by injection with botulinum toxin A usually lasts about three months. Botulinum toxins now play a very significant role in the management of a wide variety of medical conditions, especially strabismus and focal dystonias, hemifacial spasm, and various spastic movement disorders, headaches, hypersalivation, hyperhidrosis, and some chronic conditions that respond only partially to medical treatment. The list of possible new indications is rapidly expanding. The cosmetological applications include correction of lines, creases and wrinkling all over the face, chin, neck, and chest to dermatological applications such as hyperhidrosis. Injections with botulinum toxin are generally well tolerated and side effects are few. A precise knowledge and understanding of the functional anatomy of the mimetic muscles is absolutely necessary to correctly use botulinum toxins in clinical practice. PMID:20418969

  19. Crystallization of the C-terminal domain of the addiction antidote CcdA in complex with its toxin CcdB.

    PubMed

    Buts, Lieven; De Jonge, Natalie; Loris, Remy; Wyns, Lode; Dao-Thi, Minh-Hoa

    2005-10-01

    CcdA and CcdB are the antidote and toxin of the ccd addiction module of Escherichia coli plasmid F. The CcdA C-terminal domain (CcdAC36; 36 amino acids) was crystallized in complex with CcdB (dimer of 2 x 101 amino acids) in three different crystal forms, two of which diffract to high resolution. Form II belongs to space group P2(1)2(1)2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 37.6, b = 60.5, c = 83.8 A and diffracts to 1.8 A resolution. Form III belongs to space group P2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 41.0, b = 37.9, c = 69.6 A, beta = 96.9 degrees, and diffracts to 1.9 A resolution. PMID:16511204

  20. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of a novel haemagglutinin component of the toxin complex of serotype C Clostridium botulinum.

    PubMed

    Hayashi, Shintaro; Akiyama, Tomonori; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Yajima, Shunsuke; Niwa, Koichi

    2014-03-01

    The botulinum toxin complex, the causative agent of botulism, passes through the intestinal wall via sugar-chain-dependent cell binding of a haemagglutinin of 33 kDa molecular weight (HA-33). The amino-acid sequence of the C-terminal half of HA-33 of the serotype C strain Yoichi (C-Yoichi) shares only 46% identity with those of the major serotype C strains. Additionally, C-Yoichi HA-33 exhibits a unique sugar-binding specificity. In the present work, C-Yoichi HA-33 was expressed in Escherichia coli and crystallized. Diffraction data were collected at a resolution of 2.2 Å. The crystals belonged to space group R3. The complete detailed protein structure will yield insight into how the unique HA-33 protein recognizes sugar moieties. PMID:24598930

  1. The crystal structure of the Rv0301-Rv0300 VapBC-3 toxin-antitoxin complex from M. tuberculosis reveals a Mg2+ ion in the active site and a putative RNA-binding site

    SciTech Connect

    Min, Andrew B; Miallau, Linda; Sawaya, Michael R; Habel, Jeff; Cascio, Duilio; Eisenberg, David

    2013-01-10

    VapBC pairs account for 45 out of 88 identified toxin-antitoxin (TA) pairs in the Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) H37Rv genome. A working model suggests that under times of stress, antitoxin molecules are degraded, releasing the toxins to slow the metabolism of the cell, which in the case of VapC toxins is via their RNase activity. Otherwise the TA pairs remain bound to their promoters, autoinhibiting transcription. The crystal structure of Rv0301-Rv0300, an Mtb VapBC TA complex determined at 1.49 Å resolution, suggests a mechanism for these three functions: RNase activity, its inhibition by antitoxin, and its ability to bind promoter DNA. The Rv0301 toxin consists of a core of five parallel beta strands flanked by alpha helices. Three proximal aspartates coordinate a Mg2+ ion forming the putative RNase active site. The Rv0300 antitoxin monomer is extended in structure, consisting of an N-terminal beta strand followed by four helices. The last two helices wrap around the toxin and terminate near the putative RNase active site, but with different conformations. In one conformation, the C-terminal arginine interferes with Mg2+ ion coordination, suggesting a mechanism by which the antitoxin can inhibit toxin activity. At the N-terminus of the antitoxin, two pairs of Ribbon-Helix-Helix (RHH) motifs are related by crystallographic twofold symmetry. The resulting hetero-octameric complex is similar to the FitAB system, but the two RHH motifs are about 30 Å closer together in the Rv0301-Rv0300 complex, suggesting either a different span of the DNA recognition sequence or a conformational change.

  2. Anthrax toxin-induced rupture of artificial lipid bilayer membranes.

    PubMed

    Nablo, Brian J; Panchal, Rekha G; Bavari, Sina; Nguyen, Tam L; Gussio, Rick; Ribot, Wil; Friedlander, Art; Chabot, Donald; Reiner, Joseph E; Robertson, Joseph W F; Balijepalli, Arvind; Halverson, Kelly M; Kasianowicz, John J

    2013-08-14

    We demonstrate experimentally that anthrax toxin complexes rupture artificial lipid bilayer membranes when isolated from the blood of infected animals. When the solution pH is temporally acidified to mimic that process in endosomes, recombinant anthrax toxin forms an irreversibly bound complex, which also destabilizes membranes. The results suggest an alternative mechanism for the translocation of anthrax toxin into the cytoplasm. PMID:23947891

  3. Anthrax toxin-induced rupture of artificial lipid bilayer membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nablo, Brian J.; Panchal, Rekha G.; Bavari, Sina; Nguyen, Tam L.; Gussio, Rick; Ribot, Wil; Friedlander, Art; Chabot, Donald; Reiner, Joseph E.; Robertson, Joseph W. F.; Balijepalli, Arvind; Halverson, Kelly M.; Kasianowicz, John J.

    2013-08-01

    We demonstrate experimentally that anthrax toxin complexes rupture artificial lipid bilayer membranes when isolated from the blood of infected animals. When the solution pH is temporally acidified to mimic that process in endosomes, recombinant anthrax toxin forms an irreversibly bound complex, which also destabilizes membranes. The results suggest an alternative mechanism for the translocation of anthrax toxin into the cytoplasm.

  4. Progenitor genealogy in the developing cerebral cortex.

    PubMed

    Laguesse, Sophie; Peyre, Elise; Nguyen, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    The mammalian cerebral cortex is characterized by a complex histological organization that reflects the spatio-temporal stratifications of related stem and neural progenitor cells, which are responsible for the generation of distinct glial and neuronal subtypes during development. Some work has been done to shed light on the existing filiations between these progenitors as well as their respective contribution to cortical neurogenesis. The aim of the present review is to summarize the current views of progenitor hierarchy and relationship in the developing cortex and to further discuss future research directions that would help us to understand the molecular and cellular regulating mechanisms involved in cerebral corticogenesis. PMID:25141969

  5. A 4-gigabase physical map unlocks the structure and evolution of the complex genome of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The current limitations in genome sequencing technology require the construction of physical maps for high-quality draft sequences of large plant genomes, such as that of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor. To construct a physical map of the Ae. tauschii genome, we fingerprinted 461,70...

  6. Crystallization of the C-terminal domain of the addiction antidote CcdA in complex with its toxin CcdB

    SciTech Connect

    Buts, Lieven; De Jonge, Natalie; Loris, Remy Wyns, Lode; Dao-Thi, Minh-Hoa

    2005-10-01

    The CcdA C-terminal domain was crystallized in complex with CcdB in two crystal forms that diffract to beyond 2.0 Å resolution. CcdA and CcdB are the antidote and toxin of the ccd addiction module of Escherichia coli plasmid F. The CcdA C-terminal domain (CcdA{sub C36}; 36 amino acids) was crystallized in complex with CcdB (dimer of 2 × 101 amino acids) in three different crystal forms, two of which diffract to high resolution. Form II belongs to space group P2{sub 1}2{sub 1}2{sub 1}, with unit-cell parameters a = 37.6, b = 60.5, c = 83.8 Å and diffracts to 1.8 Å resolution. Form III belongs to space group P2{sub 1}, with unit-cell parameters a = 41.0, b = 37.9, c = 69.6 Å, β = 96.9°, and diffracts to 1.9 Å resolution.

  7. σ-1 Receptor Inhibition of ASIC1a Channels is Dependent on a Pertussis Toxin-Sensitive G-Protein and an AKAP150/Calcineurin Complex.

    PubMed

    Mari, Yelenis; Katnik, Christopher; Cuevas, Javier

    2015-10-01

    ASIC1a channels play a major role in various pathophysiological conditions including depression, anxiety, epilepsy, and neurodegeneration following ischemic stroke. Sigma-1 (σ-1) receptor stimulation depresses the activity of ASIC1a channels in cortical neurons, but the mechanism(s) by which σ-1 receptors exert their influence on ASIC1a remains unknown. Experiments were undertaken to elucidate the signaling cascade linking σ-1 receptors to ASIC1a channels. Immunohistochemical studies showed that σ-1 receptors, ASIC1a and A-kinase anchoring peptide 150 colocalize in the plasma membrane of the cell body and processes of cortical neurons. Fluorometric Ca(2+) imaging experiments showed that disruption of the macromolecular complexes containing AKAP150 diminished the effects of the σ-1 on ASIC1a, as did application of the calcineurin inhibitors, cyclosporin A and FK-506. Moreover, whole-cell patch clamp experiments showed that σ-1 receptors were less effective at decreasing ASIC1a-mediated currents in the presence of the VIVIT peptide, which binds to calcineurin and prevents cellular effects dependent on AKAP150/calcineurin interaction. The coupling of σ-1 to ASIC1a was also disrupted by preincubation of the neurons in the G-protein inhibitor, pertussis toxin (PTX). Taken together, our data reveal that σ-1 receptor block of ASIC1a function is dependent on activation of a PTX-sensitive G-protein and stimulation of AKAP150 bound calcineurin. PMID:24925261

  8. Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin Causes Selective Death of Mature Oligodendrocytes and Central Nervous System Demyelination

    PubMed Central

    Linden, Jennifer R.; Ma, Yinghua; Zhao, Baohua; Harris, Jason Michael; Rumah, Kareem Rashid; Schaeren-Wiemers, Nicole

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin (ε-toxin) is responsible for a devastating multifocal central nervous system (CNS) white matter disease in ruminant animals. The mechanism by which ε-toxin causes white matter damage is poorly understood. In this study, we sought to determine the molecular and cellular mechanisms by which ε-toxin causes pathological changes to white matter. In primary CNS cultures, ε-toxin binds to and kills oligodendrocytes but not astrocytes, microglia, or neurons. In cerebellar organotypic culture, ε-toxin induces demyelination, which occurs in a time- and dose-dependent manner, while preserving neurons, astrocytes, and microglia. ε-Toxin specificity for oligodendrocytes was confirmed using enriched glial culture. Sensitivity to ε-toxin is developmentally regulated, as only mature oligodendrocytes are susceptible to ε-toxin; oligodendrocyte progenitor cells are not. ε-Toxin sensitivity is also dependent on oligodendrocyte expression of the proteolipid myelin and lymphocyte protein (MAL), as MAL-deficient oligodendrocytes are insensitive to ε-toxin. In addition, ε-toxin binding to white matter follows the spatial and temporal pattern of MAL expression. A neutralizing antibody against ε-toxin inhibits oligodendrocyte death and demyelination. This study provides several novel insights into the action of ε-toxin in the CNS. (i) ε-Toxin causes selective oligodendrocyte death while preserving all other neural elements. (ii) ε-Toxin-mediated oligodendrocyte death is a cell autonomous effect. (iii) The effects of ε-toxin on the oligodendrocyte lineage are restricted to mature oligodendrocytes. (iv) Expression of the developmentally regulated proteolipid MAL is required for the cytotoxic effects. (v) The cytotoxic effects of ε-toxin can be abrogated by an ε-toxin neutralizing antibody. PMID:26081637

  9. Three dimensional structure of the MqsR:MqsA complex: a novel TA pair comprised of a toxin homologous to RelE and an antitoxin with unique properties.

    PubMed

    Brown, Breann L; Grigoriu, Simina; Kim, Younghoon; Arruda, Jennifer M; Davenport, Andrew; Wood, Thomas K; Peti, Wolfgang; Page, Rebecca

    2009-12-01

    One mechanism by which bacteria survive environmental stress is through the formation of bacterial persisters, a sub-population of genetically identical quiescent cells that exhibit multidrug tolerance and are highly enriched in bacterial toxins. Recently, the Escherichia coli gene mqsR (b3022) was identified as the gene most highly upregulated in persisters. Here, we report multiple individual and complex three-dimensional structures of MqsR and its antitoxin MqsA (B3021), which reveal that MqsR:MqsA form a novel toxin:antitoxin (TA) pair. MqsR adopts an alpha/beta fold that is homologous with the RelE/YoeB family of bacterial ribonuclease toxins. MqsA is an elongated dimer that neutralizes MqsR toxicity. As expected for a TA pair, MqsA binds its own promoter. Unexpectedly, it also binds the promoters of genes important for E. coli physiology (e.g., mcbR, spy). Unlike canonical antitoxins, MqsA is also structured throughout its entire sequence, binds zinc and coordinates DNA via its C- and not N-terminal domain. These studies reveal that TA systems, especially the antitoxins, are significantly more diverse than previously recognized and provide new insights into the role of toxins in maintaining the persister state. PMID:20041169

  10. Three Dimensional Structure of the MqsR:MqsA Complex: a Novel TA Pair Comprised of a Toxin Homologous to RelE and an Antitoxin with Unique Properties

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, B.; Grigoriu, S; Kim, Y; Arruda, J; Davenport, A; wood, T; Peti, W; Page, R

    2009-01-01

    One mechanism by which bacteria survive environmental stress is through the formation of bacterial persisters, a sub-population of genetically identical quiescent cells that exhibit multidrug tolerance and are highly enriched in bacterial toxins. Recently, the Escherichia coli gene mqsR (b3022) was identified as the gene most highly upregulated in persisters. Here, we report multiple individual and complex three-dimensional structures of MqsR and its antitoxin MqsA (B3021), which reveal that MqsR:MqsA form a novel toxin:antitoxin (TA) pair. MqsR adopts an alpha/beta fold that is homologous with the RelE/YoeB family of bacterial ribonuclease toxins. MqsA is an elongated dimer that neutralizes MqsR toxicity. As expected for a TA pair, MqsA binds its own promoter. Unexpectedly, it also binds the promoters of genes important for E. coli physiology (e.g., mcbR, spy). Unlike canonical antitoxins, MqsA is also structured throughout its entire sequence, binds zinc and coordinates DNA via its C- and not N-terminal domain. These studies reveal that TA systems, especially the antitoxins, are significantly more diverse than previously recognized and provide new insights into the role of toxins in maintaining the persister state.

  11. An internal standard approach for homogeneous TR-FRET immunoassays facilitates the detection of bacteria, biomarkers, and toxins in complex matrices.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Noam; Zahavy, Eran; Zichel, Ran; Fisher, Morly

    2016-07-01

    The recent development of a homogeneous time-resolved Förster resonance energy transfer (TR-FRET) immunoassay enables one-step, rapid (minutes), and direct detection compared to the multistep, time-consuming (hours), heterogeneous ELISA-type immunoassays. The use of the time-resolved effect of a donor lanthanide complex with a delay time of microseconds and large Stokes shift enables the separation of positive signals from the background autofluorescence of the sample. However, this study shows that the sample matrices directly interfere with donor fluorescence and that interference cannot be eliminated by time-resolved settings alone. Moreover, the reduction in donor emission did not appear to be equivalent to the reduction in acceptor emission, resulting in incorrect FRET signal measurements. To overcome this limitation, an internal standard approach was developed using an isotype control antibody. This new approach was used to develop TR-FRET assays for rapid detection (15-30 min) of Bacillus anthracis spores and botulinum toxin (type E) in beverages, which are major concerns in bioterrorism involving deliberate food contamination. Additionally, we demonstrate the detection of B. anthracis-secreted protective antigen (PA) and the Yersinia pestis-secreted markers F1 and LcrV in blood cultures, which are early markers of bacteremia in infected hosts following a possible bioterror attack. The use of an internal standard enables the calculation of correct ΔF values without the need for an external standard. Thus, the use of the internal standard approach in homogeneous immunoassays facilitates the examination of any sample regardless of its origin, and therefore expands the applicability of TR-FRET assays for complex matrices. PMID:27236318

  12. Biocompatible hybrid nanomaterials involving polymers and hydrogels interfaced with phosphorescent complexes and toxin-free metallic nanoparticles for biomedical applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marpu, Sreekar B.

    The major topics discussed are all relevant to interfacing brightly phosphorescent and non-luminescent coinage metal complexes of [Ag(I) and Au(I)] with biopolymers and thermoresponsive gels for making hybrid nanomaterials with an explanation on syntheses, characterization and their significance in biomedical fields. Experimental results and ongoing work on determining outreaching consequences of these hybrid nanomaterials for various biomedical applications like cancer therapy, bio-imaging and antibacterial abilities are described. In vitro and in vivo studies have been performed on majority of the discussed hybrid nanomaterials and determined that the cytotoxicity or antibacterial activity are comparatively superior when compared to analogues in literature. Consequential differences are noticed in photoluminescence enhancement from hybrid phosphorescent hydrogels, phosphorescent complex ability to physically crosslink, Au(I) sulfides tendency to form NIR (near-infrared) absorbing AuNPs compared to any similar work in literature. Syntheses of these hybrid nanomaterials has been thoroughly investigated and it is determined that either metallic nanoparticles syntheses or syntheses of phosphorescent hydrogels can be carried in single step without involving any hazardous reducing agents or crosslinkers or stabilizers that are commonly employed during multiple step syntheses protocols for syntheses of similar materials in literature. These astounding results that have been discovered within studies of hybrid nanomaterials are an asset to applications ranging from materials development to health science and will have striking effect on environmental and green chemistry approaches.

  13. Architecture of the botulinum neurotoxin complex: a molecular machine for protection and delivery

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Kwok-Ho; Jin, Rongsheng

    2015-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are extremely poisonous protein toxins that cause the fatal paralytic disease botulism. They are naturally produced in bacteria with several nontoxic neurotoxin-associated proteins (NAPs) and together they form a progenitor toxin complex (PTC), the largest bacterial toxin complex known. In foodborne botulism, the PTC functions as a molecular machine that helps BoNT breach the host defense in the gut. Here, we discuss the substantial recent advance in elucidating the atomic structures and assembly of the 14-subunit PTC, including structures of BoNT and four NAPs. These structural studies shed light on the molecular mechanisms by which BoNT is protected against the acidic environment and proteolytic destruction in the gastrointestinal tract, and how it is delivered across the intestinal epithelial barrier. PMID:25889616

  14. The gallium(III)-salicylidene acylhydrazide complex shows synergistic anti-biofilm effect and inhibits toxin production by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    PubMed

    Rzhepishevska, Olena; Hakobyan, Shoghik; Ekstrand-Hammarström, Barbro; Nygren, Yvonne; Karlsson, Torbjörn; Bucht, Anders; Elofsson, Mikael; Boily, Jean-François; Ramstedt, Madeleine

    2014-09-01

    Bacterial biofilms cause a range of problems in many areas and especially in health care. Biofilms are difficult to eradicate with traditional antibiotics and consequently there is a need for alternative ways to prevent and/or remove bacterial biofilms. Furthermore, the emergence of antibiotic resistance in bacteria creates a challenge to find new types of antibiotics with a lower evolutionary pressure for resistance development. One route to develop such drugs is to target the so called virulence factors, i.e. bacterial systems used when bacteria infect a host cell. This study investigates synergy effects between Ga(III) ions, previously reported to suppress biofilm formation and growth in bacteria, and salicylidene acylhydrazides (hydrazones) that have been proposed as antivirulence drugs targeting the type three secretion system used by several Gram-negative pathogens, including Pseudomonas aerugionosa, during bacterial infection of host cells. A library of hydrazones was screened for: Fe(III) binding, enhanced anti-biofilm effect with Ga(III) on P. aeruginosa, and low cytotoxicity to mammalian cells. The metal coordination for the most promising ligand, 2-Oxo-2-[N-(2,4,6-trihydroxy-benzylidene)-hydrazino]-acetamide (ME0163) with Ga(III) was investigated using extended X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy as well as density functional theory. The results showed that Ga(III) chelates the hydrazone with 5- and 6-membered chelating rings, and that the Ga(III)-ME0163 complex enhanced the antibiofilm effect of Ga(III) while suppressing the type three secretion system in P. aeruginosa. The latter effect was not observed for the hydrazone alone and was similar for Ga(III)-citrate and Ga(III)-ME0163 complexes, indicating that the inhibition of virulence was caused by Ga(III). PMID:24837331

  15. Comparison of Systemic Toxicity between Botulinum Toxin Subtypes A1 and A2 in Mice and Rats.

    PubMed

    Torii, Yasushi; Goto, Yoshitaka; Nakahira, Shinji; Kozaki, Shunji; Kaji, Ryuji; Ginnaga, Akihiro

    2015-06-01

    The adverse events caused by botulinum toxin type A (subtype A1) product, thought to be after-effects of toxin diffusion after high-dose administration, have become serious issues. A preparation showing less diffusion in the body than existing drugs has been sought. We have attempted to produce neurotoxin derived from subtype A2 (A2NTX) with an amino acid sequence different from that of neurotoxin derived from subtype A1 (A1NTX). In this study, to investigate whether A2NTX has the potential to resolve these issues, we compared the safety of A2NTX, a progenitor toxin derived from subtype A1 (A1 progenitor toxin) and A1NTX employing the intramuscular lethal dose 50% (im LD50) in mice and rats and the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) in rats. Mouse im LD50 values for A1 progenitor toxin and A2NTX were 93 and 166 U/kg, respectively, and the rat im LD50 values were 117 and 153 U/kg, respectively. In the rat CMAP test, the dose on the contralateral side, which caused a 50% reduction in the CMAP amplitude, that is, CMAP-TD50 , was calculated as 19.0, 16.6 and 28.7 U/kg for A1 progenitor toxin, A1NTX and A2NTX, respectively. The results indicate that A2NTX is safer than A1 progenitor toxin and A1NTX. PMID:25395371

  16. Anthrax Toxins in Context of Bacillus anthracis Spores and Spore Germination

    PubMed Central

    Cote, Christopher K.; Welkos, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

    The interaction of anthrax toxin or toxin components with B. anthracis spores has been demonstrated. Germinating spores can produce significant amounts of toxin components very soon after the initiation of germination. In this review, we will summarize the work performed that has led to our understanding of toxin and spore interactions and discuss the complexities associated with these interactions. PMID:26287244

  17. The genetic architecture of a complex trait: Resistance to multiple toxins produced by Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis in the dengue and yellow fever vector, the mosquito Aedes aegypti.

    PubMed

    Bonin, Aurélie; Paris, Margot; Frérot, Hélène; Bianco, Erica; Tetreau, Guillaume; Després, Laurence

    2015-10-01

    The bacterial insecticide Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis (Bti) is an increasingly popular alternative to chemical insecticides for controlling mosquito populations. Because Bti toxicity relies on the action of four main toxins, resistance to Bti is very likely a complex phenotype involving several genes simultaneously. Dissecting the underlying genetic basis thus requires associating a quantitative measure of resistance to genetic variation at many loci in a segregating population. Here, we undertake this task using the dengue and yellow fever vector, the mosquito Aedes aegypti, as a study model. We conducted QTL (Quantitative Trait Locus) and admixture mapping analyses on two controlled crosses and on an artificial admixed population, respectively, all obtained from resistant and susceptible lab strains. We detected 16 QTL regions, among which four QTLs were revealed by different analysis methods. These four robust QTLs explained altogether 29.2% and 62.2% of the total phenotypic variance in the two QTL crosses, respectively. They also all showed a dominant mode of action. In addition, we found six loci showing statistical association with Bti resistance in the admixed population. Five of the supercontigs highlighted in this study contained candidate genes as suggested by their function, or by prior evidence from expression and/or outlier analyses. These genomic regions are thus good starting points for fine mapping of resistance to Bti or functional analyses aiming at identifying the underlying genes and mutations. Moreover, for the purpose of this work, we built the first Ae. aegypti genetic map based on markers associated with genes expressed in larvae. This genetic map harbors 229 SNP markers mapped across the three chromosomes for a total length of 311.9cM. It brought to light several assembly discrepancies with the reference genome, suggesting a high level of genome plasticity in Ae. aegypti. PMID:26238211

  18. *CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, are naturally-occurring contaminants of surface waters worldwide. These photosynthesizing prokaryotes thrive in warm, shallow, nutrient-rich waters. Many produce potent toxins as secondary metabolites. Cyanobacteria toxins have been document...

  19. Botulinum toxin injection - larynx

    MedlinePlus

    Injection laryngoplasty; Botox-larynx: spasmodic dysphonia-BTX; Essential voice tremor (EVT)-btx; Glottic insufficiency; Percutaneous electromyography-guided botulinum toxin treatment; Percutaneous indirect laryngoscopy-guided botulinum toxin Treatment; ...

  20. Stool C. difficile toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003590.htm Stool C. difficile toxin To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. The stool C. difficile toxin test detects harmful substances produced by ...

  1. Botox (Botulinum Toxin)

    MedlinePlus

    ... people when there are many effective and safe cosmetic procedures that can temporarily reduce a very prominent ... form of botulinum toxin is Type A (Botox® Cosmetic, Allergan, Inc). Botulinum toxin, what we will now ...

  2. Target-Driven Evolution of Scorpion Toxins.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shangfei; Gao, Bin; Zhu, Shunyi

    2015-01-01

    It is long known that peptide neurotoxins derived from a diversity of venomous animals evolve by positive selection following gene duplication, yet a force that drives their adaptive evolution remains a mystery. By using maximum-likelihood models of codon substitution, we analyzed molecular adaptation in scorpion sodium channel toxins from a specific species and found ten positively selected sites, six of which are located at the core-domain of scorpion α-toxins, a region known to interact with two adjacent loops in the voltage-sensor domain (DIV) of sodium channels, as validated by our newly constructed computational model of toxin-channel complex. Despite the lack of positive selection signals in these two loops, they accumulated extensive sequence variations by relaxed purifying selection in prey and predators of scorpions. The evolutionary variability in the toxin-bound regions of sodium channels indicates that accelerated substitutions in the multigene family of scorpion toxins is a consequence of dealing with the target diversity. This work presents an example of atypical co-evolution between animal toxins and their molecular targets, in which toxins suffered from more prominent selective pressure from the channels of their competitors. Our discovery helps explain the evolutionary rationality of gene duplication of toxins in a specific venomous species. PMID:26444071

  3. Detection of Protein Toxins

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We have focused on ricin, shiga-like toxin, botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), and staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA), developing sensitive test methods for toxins and marker compounds in food matrices. Although animal models provide the best means for risk assessment, especially for crude toxins in compl...

  4. MRSA Clonal Complex 22 Strains Harboring Toxic Shock Syndrome Toxin (TSST-1) Are Endemic in the Primary Hospital in Gaza, Palestine

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Liang; Abdelateef, Nahed; Elamreen, Farid Abu; Ginocchio, Christine C.; Pierard, Denis; Becker, Karsten; Kreiswirth, Barry N.

    2015-01-01

    Background Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is an important pathogen in both community and healthcare-related settings worldwide. Current knowledge regarding the epidemiology of S. aureus and MRSA in Gaza is based on a single community-based carriage study. Here we describe a cross-sectional analysis of 215 clinical isolates collected from Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza during 2008 and 2012. Methods All isolates were characterized by spa typing, SCCmec typing, and detection of genes encoding Panton-Valentine leukocidin (PVL) and toxic shock syndrome toxin (TSST-1). Representative genotypes were also subjected to multilocus sequence typing (MLST). Antibiotic susceptibility testing was performed using VITEK2 and MicroScan. Results MRSA represented 56.3% of all S. aureus strains, and increased in frequency from 2008 (54.8%) to 2012 (58.4%). Aside from beta-lactams, resistance was observed to tetracycline, erythromycin, clindamycin, gentamicin, and fluoroquinolones. Molecular typing identified 35 spa types representing 17 MLST clonal complexes (CC), with spa 998 (Ridom t223, CC22) and spa 70 (Ridom t044, CC80) being the most prevalent. SCCmec types I, III, IV, V and VI were identified among MRSA isolates, while type II was not detected. PVL genes (lukF/S-PV) were detected in 40.0% of all isolates, while the TSST-1 gene (tst) was detected in 27.4% of all isolates, with surprisingly high frequency within CC22 (70.4%). Both PVL and TSST-1 genes were found in several isolates from 2012. Conclusions Molecular typing of clinical isolates from Gaza hospitals revealed unusually high prevalence of TSST-1 genes among CC22 MRSA, which is noteworthy given a recent community study describing widespread carriage of a CC22 MRSA clone known as the ‘Gaza strain’. While the latter did not address TSST-1, tst-positive spa 998 (Ridom t223) has been detected in several neighboring countries, and described as endemic in an Italian NICU, suggesting international spread of a

  5. Structural model of ligand-G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) complex based on experimental double mutant cycle data: MT7 snake toxin bound to dimeric hM1 muscarinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Marquer, Catherine; Fruchart-Gaillard, Carole; Letellier, Guillaume; Marcon, Elodie; Mourier, Gilles; Zinn-Justin, Sophie; Ménez, André; Servent, Denis; Gilquin, Bernard

    2011-09-01

    The snake toxin MT7 is a potent and specific allosteric modulator of the human M1 muscarinic receptor (hM1). We previously characterized by mutagenesis experiments the functional determinants of the MT7-hM1 receptor interaction (Fruchart-Gaillard, C., Mourier, G., Marquer, C., Stura, E., Birdsall, N. J., and Servent, D. (2008) Mol. Pharmacol. 74, 1554-1563) and more recently collected evidence indicating that MT7 may bind to a dimeric form of hM1 (Marquer, C., Fruchart-Gaillard, C., Mourier, G., Grandjean, O., Girard, E., le Maire, M., Brown, S., and Servent, D. (2010) Biol. Cell 102, 409-420). To structurally characterize the MT7-hM1 complex, we adopted a strategy combining double mutant cycle experiments and molecular modeling calculations. First, thirty-three ligand-receptor proximities were identified from the analysis of sixty-one double mutant binding affinities. Several toxin residues that are more than 25 Å apart still contact the same residues on the receptor. As a consequence, attempts to satisfy all the restraints by docking the toxin onto a single receptor failed. The toxin was then positioned onto two receptors during five independent flexible docking simulations. The different possible ligand and receptor extracellular loop conformations were described by performing simulations in explicit solvent. All the docking calculations converged to the same conformation of the MT7-hM1 dimer complex, satisfying the experimental restraints and in which (i) the toxin interacts with the extracellular side of the receptor, (ii) the tips of MT7 loops II and III contact one hM1 protomer, whereas the tip of loop I binds to the other protomer, and (iii) the hM1 dimeric interface involves the transmembrane helices TM6 and TM7. These results structurally support the high affinity and selectivity of the MT7-hM1 interaction and highlight the atypical mode of interaction of this allosteric ligand on its G protein-coupled receptor target. PMID:21685390

  6. A 4-gigabase physical map unlocks the structure and evolution of the complex genome of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Ming-Cheng; Gu, Yong Q.; You, Frank M.; Deal, Karin R.; Ma, Yaqin; Hu, Yuqin; Huo, Naxin; Wang, Yi; Wang, Jirui; Chen, Shiyong; Jorgensen, Chad M.; Zhang, Yong; McGuire, Patrick E.; Pasternak, Shiran; Stein, Joshua C.; Ware, Doreen; Kramer, Melissa; McCombie, W. Richard; Kianian, Shahryar F.; Martis, Mihaela M.; Mayer, Klaus F. X.; Sehgal, Sunish K.; Li, Wanlong; Gill, Bikram S.; Bevan, Michael W.; Šimková, Hana; Doležel, Jaroslav; Weining, Song; Lazo, Gerard R.; Anderson, Olin D.; Dvorak, Jan

    2013-01-01

    The current limitations in genome sequencing technology require the construction of physical maps for high-quality draft sequences of large plant genomes, such as that of Aegilops tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor. To construct a physical map of the Ae. tauschii genome, we fingerprinted 461,706 bacterial artificial chromosome clones, assembled contigs, designed a 10K Ae. tauschii Infinium SNP array, constructed a 7,185-marker genetic map, and anchored on the map contigs totaling 4.03 Gb. Using whole genome shotgun reads, we extended the SNP marker sequences and found 17,093 genes and gene fragments. We showed that collinearity of the Ae. tauschii genes with Brachypodium distachyon, rice, and sorghum decreased with phylogenetic distance and that structural genome evolution rates have been high across all investigated lineages in subfamily Pooideae, including that of Brachypodieae. We obtained additional information about the evolution of the seven Triticeae chromosomes from 12 ancestral chromosomes and uncovered a pattern of centromere inactivation accompanying nested chromosome insertions in grasses. We showed that the density of noncollinear genes along the Ae. tauschii chromosomes positively correlates with recombination rates, suggested a cause, and showed that new genes, exemplified by disease resistance genes, are preferentially located in high-recombination chromosome regions. PMID:23610408

  7. Risk assessment of shellfish toxins.

    PubMed

    Munday, Rex; Reeve, John

    2013-11-01

    Complex secondary metabolites, some of which are highly toxic to mammals, are produced by many marine organisms. Some of these organisms are important food sources for marine animals and, when ingested, the toxins that they produce may be absorbed and stored in the tissues of the predators, which then become toxic to animals higher up the food chain. This is a particular problem with shellfish, and many cases of poisoning are reported in shellfish consumers each year. At present, there is no practicable means of preventing uptake of the toxins by shellfish or of removing them after harvesting. Assessment of the risk posed by such toxins is therefore required in order to determine levels that are unlikely to cause adverse effects in humans and to permit the establishment of regulatory limits in shellfish for human consumption. In the present review, the basic principles of risk assessment are described, and the progress made toward robust risk assessment of seafood toxins is discussed. While good progress has been made, it is clear that further toxicological studies are required before this goal is fully achieved. PMID:24226039

  8. Risk Assessment of Shellfish Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Munday, Rex; Reeve, John

    2013-01-01

    Complex secondary metabolites, some of which are highly toxic to mammals, are produced by many marine organisms. Some of these organisms are important food sources for marine animals and, when ingested, the toxins that they produce may be absorbed and stored in the tissues of the predators, which then become toxic to animals higher up the food chain. This is a particular problem with shellfish, and many cases of poisoning are reported in shellfish consumers each year. At present, there is no practicable means of preventing uptake of the toxins by shellfish or of removing them after harvesting. Assessment of the risk posed by such toxins is therefore required in order to determine levels that are unlikely to cause adverse effects in humans and to permit the establishment of regulatory limits in shellfish for human consumption. In the present review, the basic principles of risk assessment are described, and the progress made toward robust risk assessment of seafood toxins is discussed. While good progress has been made, it is clear that further toxicological studies are required before this goal is fully achieved. PMID:24226039

  9. Toxin activity assays, devices, methods and systems therefor

    DOEpatents

    Koh, Chung-Yan; Schaff, Ulrich Y.; Sommer, Gregory Jon

    2016-04-05

    Embodiments of the present invention are directed toward devices, system and method for conducting toxin activity assay using sedimentation. The toxin activity assay may include generating complexes which bind to a plurality of beads in a fluid sample. The complexes may include a target toxin and a labeling agent, or may be generated due to presence of active target toxin and/or labeling agent designed to be incorporated into complexes responsive to the presence of target active toxin. The plurality of beads including the complexes may be transported through a density media, wherein the density media has a lower density than a density of the beads and higher than a density of the fluid sample, and wherein the transporting occurs, at least in part, by sedimentation. Signal may be detected from the labeling agents of the complexes.

  10. Mapping Protein-Protein Interactions of the Resistance-Related Bacterial Zeta Toxin-Epsilon Antitoxin Complex (ε₂ζ₂) with High Affinity Peptide Ligands Using Fluorescence Polarization.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Bachiller, María Isabel; Brzozowska, Iwona; Odolczyk, Norbert; Zielenkiewicz, Urszula; Zielenkiewicz, Piotr; Rademann, Jörg

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin systems constitute a native survival strategy of pathogenic bacteria and thus are potential targets of antibiotic drugs. Here, we target the Zeta-Epsilon toxin-antitoxin system, which is responsible for the stable maintenance of certain multiresistance plasmids in Gram-positive bacteria. Peptide ligands were designed on the basis of the ε₂ζ₂ complex. Three α helices of Zeta forming the protein-protein interaction (PPI) site were selected and peptides were designed conserving the residues interacting with Epsilon antitoxin while substituting residues binding intramolecularly to other parts of Zeta. Designed peptides were synthesized with an N-terminal fluoresceinyl-carboxy-residue for binding assays and provided active ligands, which were used to define the hot spots of the ε₂ζ₂ complex. Further shortening and modification of the binding peptides provided ligands with affinities <100 nM, allowing us to determine the most relevant PPIs and implement a robust competition binding assay. PMID:27438853

  11. [Intoxication of botulinum toxin].

    PubMed

    Chudzicka, Aleksandra

    2015-09-01

    Botulinum toxin is an egzotoxin produced by Gram positive bacteria Clostridium botulinum. It is among the most potent toxins known. The 3 main clinical presentations of botulism are as follows: foodborne botulism, infant botulism and wound botulism. The main symptom of intoxication is flat muscles paralysis. The treatment is supportive care and administration of antitoxin. In prevention the correct preparing of canned food is most important. Botulinum toxin is accepted as a biological weapon. PMID:26449577

  12. Botulinum toxin injection - larynx

    MedlinePlus

    Injection laryngoplasty; Botox-larynx: spasmodic dysphonia-BTX; Essential voice tremor (EVT)-btx; Glottic insufficiency; Percutaneous electromyography-guided botulinum toxin treatment; Percutaneous indirect laryngoscopy- ...

  13. A unique hetero-hexadecameric architecture displayed by the Escherichia coli O157 PaaA2-ParE2 antitoxin-toxin complex.

    PubMed

    Sterckx, Yann G-J; Jové, Thomas; Shkumatov, Alexander V; Garcia-Pino, Abel; Geerts, Lieselotte; De Kerpel, Maia; Lah, Jurij; De Greve, Henri; Van Melderen, Laurence; Loris, Remy

    2016-04-24

    Many bacterial pathogens modulate their metabolic activity, virulence and pathogenicity through so-called "toxin-antitoxin" (TA) modules. The genome of the human pathogen Escherichia coli O157 contains two three-component TA modules related to the known parDE module. Here, we show that the toxin EcParE2 maps in a branch of the RelE/ParE toxin superfamily that is distinct from the branches that contain verified gyrase and ribosome inhibitors. The structure of EcParE2 closely resembles that of Caulobacter crescentus ParE but shows a distinct pattern of conserved surface residues, in agreement with its apparent inability to interact with GyrA. The antitoxin EcPaaA2 is characterized by two α-helices (H1 and H2) that serve as molecular recognition elements to wrap itself around EcParE2. Both EcPaaA2 H1 and H2 are required to sustain a high-affinity interaction with EcParE2 and for the inhibition of EcParE2-mediated killing in vivo. Furthermore, evidence demonstrates that EcPaaA2 H2, but not H1, determines specificity for EcParE2. The initially formed EcPaaA2-EcParE2 heterodimer then assembles into a hetero-hexadecamer, which is stable in solution and is formed in a highly cooperative manner. Together these findings provide novel data on quaternary structure, TA interactions and activity of a hitherto poorly characterized family of TA modules. PMID:26996937

  14. A 4-gigbase physical map unlocks the structure and evolution of the complex genome of Aegilop tauschii, the wheat D-genome progenitor

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genomes of wheat and its relatives in the tribe Triticeae are large, containing nearly 90% repetitive DNA, and some are polyploid. These genomes can currently be completely sequenced only by the ordered-clone genome sequencing approach, which reduces the complexity of sequence assembly from th...

  15. Oligomerization of Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin Is Dependent upon Caveolins 1 and 2

    PubMed Central

    Fennessey, Christine M.; Sheng, Jinsong; Rubin, Donald H.; McClain, Mark S.

    2012-01-01

    Evidence from multiple studies suggests that Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin is a pore-forming toxin, assembling into oligomeric complexes in the plasma membrane of sensitive cells. In a previous study, we used gene-trap mutagenesis to identify mammalian factors contributing to toxin activity, including caveolin-2 (CAV2). In this study, we demonstrate the importance of caveolin-2 and its interaction partner, caveolin-1 (CAV1), in ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Using CAV2-specific shRNA in a toxin-sensitive human kidney cell line, ACHN, we confirmed that cells deficient in CAV2 exhibit increased resistance to ε-toxin. Similarly, using CAV1-specific shRNA, we demonstrate that cells deficient in CAV1 also exhibit increased resistance to the toxin. Immunoprecipitation of CAV1 and CAV2 from ε-toxin-treated ACHN cells demonstrated interaction of both CAV1 and -2 with the toxin. Furthermore, blue-native PAGE indicated that the toxin and caveolins were components of a 670 kDa protein complex. Although ε-toxin binding was only slightly perturbed in caveolin-deficient cells, oligomerization of the toxin was dramatically reduced in both CAV1- and CAV2-deficient cells. These results indicate that CAV1 and -2 potentiate ε-toxin induced cytotoxicity by promoting toxin oligomerization – an event which is requisite for pore formation and, by extension, cell death. PMID:23056496

  16. Defense against toxin weapons

    SciTech Connect

    Franz, D.R.

    1994-01-01

    The purpose of this manual is to provide basic information on biological toxins to military leaders and health-care providers at all levels to help them make informed decisions on protecting their troops from toxins. Much of the information contained herein will also be of interest to individuals charged with countering domestic and international terrorism. We typically fear what we do not understand.

  17. Preformed bacterial toxins.

    PubMed

    Crane, J K

    1999-09-01

    Food poisoning syndromes caused by four different bacteria are described. For all types, food kept at a permissive temperature allows growth of the vegetative forms of the bacteria and production of a toxin or toxins. The key features of these syndromes, as well as possible new trends of concern, are summarized in Table 1. PMID:10549427

  18. Staphylococcus aureus toxins--their functions and genetics.

    PubMed

    Grumann, Dorothee; Nübel, Ulrich; Bröker, Barbara M

    2014-01-01

    The outcome of encounters between Staphylococcus (S.) aureus and its human host ranges from life-threatening infection through allergic reactions to symptom-free colonization. The pan-genome of this bacterial species encodes numerous toxins, known or strongly suspected to cause specific diseases or symptoms. Three toxin families are in the focus of this review, namely (i) pore-forming toxins, (ii) exfoliative toxins and (iii) superantigens. The majority of toxin-encoding genes are located on mobile genetic elements (MGEs), resulting in a pronounced heterogeneity in the endowment with toxin genes of individual S. aureus strains. Recent population genomic analysis have provided a framework for an improved understanding of the temporal and spatial scales of the motility of MGEs and their associated toxin genes. The distribution of toxin genes among clonal lineages within the species S. aureus is not random, and phylogenetic (sub-)lineages within clonal complexes feature characteristic toxin signatures. When studying pathogenesis, this lineage association, which is caused by the clonal nature of S. aureus makes it difficult to discriminate effects of specific toxins from contributions of the genetic background and/or other associated genetic factors. PMID:23541411

  19. Modulation of innate and acquired immune responses by Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin: distinct pro- and anti-inflammatory effects of the nontoxic AB complex and the enzyme activity.

    PubMed

    Ryan, E J; McNeela, E; Pizza, M; Rappuoli, R; O'Neill, L; Mills, K H

    2000-11-15

    We have examined the roles of enzyme activity and the nontoxic AB complex of heat-labile toxin (LT) from Escherichia coli on its adjuvant and immunomodulatory properties. LTK63, an LT mutant that is completely devoid of enzyme activity, enhanced Th1 responses to coinjected Ags at low adjuvant dose. In contrast, LTR72, a partially detoxified mutant, enhanced Th2 responses and when administered intranasally to mice before infection with Bordetella pertussis suppressed Th1 responses and delayed bacterial clearance from the lungs. LTR72 or wild-type LT inhibited Ag-induced IFN-gamma production by Th1 cells, and LT enhanced IL-5 production by Th2 cells in vitro. Each of the toxins enhanced B7-1 expression on macrophages, but enhancement of B7-2 expression was dependent on enzyme activity. We also observed distinct effects of the nontoxic AB complex and enzyme activity on inflammatory cytokine production. LT and LTR72 suppressed LPS and IFN-gamma induced TNF-alpha and IL-12 production, but enhanced IL-10 secretion by macrophages in vitro and suppressed IL-12 production in vivo in a murine model of LPS-induced shock. In contrast, LTK63 augmented the production of IL-12 and TNF-alpha. Furthermore, LTK63 enhanced NF-kappaB translocation, whereas low doses of LTR72 or LT failed to activate NF-kappaB, but stimulated cAMP production. Thus, E. coli LT appears to be capable of suppressing Th1 responses and enhancing Th2 responses through the modulatory effects of enzyme activity on NF-kappaB activation and IL-12 production. In contrast, the nontoxic AB complex can stimulate acquired immune responses by activating components of the innate immune system. PMID:11067933

  20. The Enhancer of Split Complex and Adjacent Genes in the 96f Region of Drosophila Melanogaster Are Required for Segregation of Neural and Epidermal Progenitor Cells

    PubMed Central

    Schrons, H.; Knust, E.; Campos-Ortega, J. A.

    1992-01-01

    The Enhancer of split complex [E(spl)-C] of Drosophila melanogaster is located in the 96F region of the third chromosome and comprises at least seven structurally related genes, HLH-mδ, HLH-mγ, HLH-mβ, HLH-m3, HLH-m5, HLH-m7 and E(spl). The functions of these genes are required during early neurogenesis to give neuroectodermal cells access to the epidermal pathway of development. Another gene in the 96F region, namely groucho, is also required for this process. However, groucho is not structurally related to, and appears to act independently of, the genes of the E(spl)-C; the possibility is discussed that groucho acts upstream to the E(spl)-C genes. Indirect evidence suggests that a neighboring transcription unit (m4) may also take part in the process. Of all these genes, only gro is essential; m4 is a dispensable gene, the deletion of which does not produce detectable morphogenetic abnormalities, and the genes of the E(spl)-C are to some extent redundant and can partially substitute for each other. This redundancy is probably due to the fact that the seven genes of the E(spl)-C encode highly conserved putative DNA-binding proteins of the bHLH family. The genes of the complex are interspersed among other genes which appear to be unrelated to the neuroepidermal lineage dichotomy. PMID:1427039

  1. Stem and progenitor cell dysfunction in human trisomies

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Binbin; Filippi, Sarah; Roy, Anindita; Roberts, Irene

    2015-01-01

    Trisomy 21, the commonest constitutional aneuploidy in humans, causes profound perturbation of stem and progenitor cell growth, which is both cell context dependent and developmental stage specific and mediated by complex genetic mechanisms beyond increased Hsa21 gene dosage. While proliferation of fetal hematopoietic and testicular stem/progenitors is increased and may underlie increased susceptibility to childhood leukemia and testicular cancer, fetal stem/progenitor proliferation in other tissues is markedly impaired leading to the characteristic craniofacial, neurocognitive and cardiac features in individuals with Down syndrome. After birth, trisomy 21-mediated premature aging of stem/progenitor cells may contribute to the progressive multi-system deterioration, including development of Alzheimer's disease. PMID:25520324

  2. Understanding malarial toxins.

    PubMed

    Starkl Renar, Katarina; Iskra, Jernej; Križaj, Igor

    2016-09-01

    Recognized since antiquity, malaria is one of the most infamous and widespread infectious diseases in humans and, although the death rate during the last century has been diminishing, it still accounts for more than a half million deaths annually. It is caused by the Plasmodium parasite and typical symptoms include fever, shivering, headache, diaphoresis and nausea, all resulting from an excessive inflammatory response induced by malarial toxins released into the victim's bloodstream. These toxins are hemozoin and glycosylphosphatidylinositols. The former is the final product of the parasite's detoxification of haeme, a by-product of haemoglobin catabolism, while the latter anchor proteins to the Plasmodium cell surface or occur as free molecules. Currently, only two groups of antimalarial toxin drugs exist on the market, quinolines and artemisinins. As we describe, they both target biosynthesis of hemozoin. Other substances, currently in various phases of clinical trials, are directed towards biosynthesis of glycosylphosphatidylinositol, formation of hemozoin, or attenuation of the inflammatory response of the patient. Among the innovative approaches to alleviating the effects of malarial toxins, is the development of antimalarial toxin vaccines. In this review the most important lessons learned from the use of treatments directed against the action of malarial toxins in antimalarial therapy are emphasized and the most relevant and promising directions for future research in obtaining novel antimalarial agents acting on malarial toxins are discussed. PMID:27353131

  3. Bacterial toxins: friends or foes?

    PubMed Central

    Schmitt, C. K.; Meysick, K. C.; O'Brien, A. D.

    1999-01-01

    Many emerging and reemerging bacterial pathogens synthesize toxins that serve as primary virulence factors. We highlight seven bacterial toxins produced by well-established or newly emergent pathogenic microbes. These toxins, which affect eukaryotic cells by a variety of means, include Staphylococcus aureus alpha-toxin, Shiga toxin, cytotoxic necrotizing factor type 1, Escherichia coli heat-stable toxin, botulinum and tetanus neurotoxins, and S. aureus toxic-shock syndrome toxin. For each, we discuss the information available on its synthesis and structure, mode of action, and contribution to virulence. We also review the role certain toxins have played in unraveling signal pathways in eukaryotic cells and summarize the beneficial uses of toxins and toxoids. Our intent is to illustrate the importance of the analysis of bacterial toxins to both basic and applied sciences. PMID:10221874

  4. Neutralizing Monoclonal Antibodies against Disparate Epitopes on Ricin Toxin's Enzymatic Subunit Interfere with Intracellular Toxin Transport.

    PubMed

    Yermakova, Anastasiya; Klokk, Tove Irene; O'Hara, Joanne M; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2016-01-01

    Ricin is a member of the A-B family of bacterial and plant toxins that exploit retrograde trafficking to the Golgi apparatus and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) as a means to deliver their cytotoxic enzymatic subunits into the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. In this study we demonstrate that R70 and SyH7, two well-characterized monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) directed against distinct epitopes on the surface of ricin's enzymatic subunit (RTA), interfere with toxin transport from the plasma membrane to the trans Golgi network. Toxin-mAb complexes formed on the cell surface delayed ricin's egress from EEA-1(+) and Rab7(+) vesicles and enhanced toxin accumulation in LAMP-1(+) vesicles, suggesting the complexes were destined for degradation in lysosomes. Three other RTA-specific neutralizing mAbs against different epitopes were similar to R70 and SyH7 in terms of their effects on ricin retrograde transport. We conclude that interference with toxin retrograde transport may be a hallmark of toxin-neutralizing antibodies directed against disparate epitopes on RTA. PMID:26949061

  5. Effects of palladacycle complex on hematopoietic progenitor cells proliferation in vivo and in vitro and its relation with the inhibitory properties of this compound on the angiotensin-I converting enzyme activity.

    PubMed

    Caires, Antonio C F; Oliveira, Carlos R; Smith, Mickaela C M; Hemerly, Jefferson P; Juliano, Maria A; Bincoletto, Claudia

    2004-01-01

    In the present study, we introduce a new class of organometallic compound, the Biphosphinic Palladacycle Complex [Pd (C2, N-S(-)(dmpa)(dppf)] Cl (BPC), as an angiotensin-I converting-enzyme inhibitor (ACEI) with hematological regulation properties. When BPC was assayed as a competitive inhibitor over the hydrolysis of Abz-YRK (Dnp)-P-OH (Km = 7.0 microM), it showed a Kiapp = 0.2259 ng and a Ki value of 94.12 pg. Using murine long-term bone marrow cultures (LTBMCs) and clonal culture techniques, we also evaluated the capacity of this drug (1.18 microM) to module haematopoietic progenitor cells proliferation in vitro and in vivo. Our results demonstrated that BPC produces no toxicity to bone marrow cells, as determined by the unchanged cell number in the non-adherent layer at weeks 1, 2, and 8 and the increased number of adherent cells present in the BPC-treated LTBMCs. However, the proportion of CFU-Cs in the non-adherent cell layer was reduced at weeks 5, 6, 8, and 9. In vivo studies using the dose of 1 mg/kg of BPC, administered by subcutaneous route, presented similar result as those found in vitro, in the number of CFU-Cs. This latter finding may be explained by the inhibitory effects of this drug on the ACE activity, which probably result in increased levels of its substrate AcSDKP, a negative regulator of hematopoiesis. PMID:15658600

  6. Myelin Proteolipid Protein Complexes with αv Integrin and AMPA Receptors In Vivo and Regulates AMPA-Dependent Oligodendrocyte Progenitor Cell Migration through the Modulation of Cell-Surface GluR2 Expression

    PubMed Central

    Harlow, Danielle E.; Saul, Katherine E.; Komuro, Hitoshi

    2015-01-01

    In previous studies, stimulation of ionotropic AMPA/kainate glutamate receptors on cultured oligodendrocyte cells induced the formation of a signaling complex that includes the AMPA receptor, integrins, calcium-binding proteins, and, surprisingly, the myelin proteolipid protein (PLP). AMPA stimulation of cultured oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) also caused an increase in OPC migration. The current studies focused primarily on the formation of the PLP–αv integrin–AMPA receptor complex in vivo and whether complex formation impacts OPC migration in the brain. We found that in wild-type cerebellum, PLP associates with αv integrin and the calcium-impermeable GluR2 subunit of the AMPA receptor, but in mice lacking PLP, αv integrin did not associate with GluR2. Live imaging studies of OPC migration in ex vivo cerebellar slices demonstrated altered OPC migratory responses to neurotransmitter stimulation in the absence of PLP and GluR2 or when αv integrin levels were reduced. Chemotaxis assays of purified OPCs revealed that AMPA stimulation was neither attractive nor repulsive but clearly increased the migration rate of wild-type but not PLP null OPCs. AMPA receptor stimulation of wild-type OPCs caused decreased cell-surface expression of the GluR2 AMPA receptor subunit and increased intracellular Ca2+ signaling, whereas PLP null OPCs did not reduce GluR2 at the cell surface or increase Ca2+ signaling in response to AMPA treatment. Together, these studies demonstrate that PLP is critical for OPC responses to glutamate signaling and has important implications for OPC responses when levels of glutamate are high in the extracellular space, such as following demyelination. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT After demyelination, such as occurs in multiple sclerosis, remyelination of axons is often incomplete, leading to loss of neuronal function and clinical disability. Remyelination may fail because oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) do not completely migrate into

  7. Scorpion-Toxin Mimics of CD4 in Complex with Human Immunodeficiency Virus gp120: Crystal Structures, Molecular Mimicry, and Neutralization Breadth

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, Chih-chin; Stricher, Francois; Martin, Loic; Decker, Julie M.; Majeed, Shahzad; Barthe, Phillippe; Hendrickson, Wayne A.; Robinson, James; Roumestand, Christian; Sodroski, Joseph; Wyatt, Richard; Shaw, George M.; Vita, Claudio; Kwong, Peter D.

    2010-07-19

    The binding surface on CD4 for the HIV-1 gp120 envelope glycoprotein has been transplanted previously onto a scorpion-toxin scaffold. Here, we use X-ray crystallography to characterize atomic-level details of gp120 with this transplant, CD4M33. Despite known envelope flexibility, the conformation of gp120 induced by CD4M33 was so similar to that induced by CD4 that localized measures were required to distinguish ligand-induced differences from lattice variation. To investigate relationships between structure, function, and mimicry, an F23 analog of CD4M33 was devised. Structural and thermodynamic analyses showed F23 to be a better molecular mimic of CD4 than CD4M33. F23 also showed increased neutralization breadth, against diverse isolates of HIV-1, HIV-2, and SIVcpz. Our results lend insight into the stability of the CD4 bound conformation of gp120, define measures that quantify molecular mimicry as a function of evolutionary distance, and suggest how such evaluations might be useful in developing mimetic antagonists with increased neutralization breadth.

  8. Snake venom toxins: toxicity and medicinal applications.

    PubMed

    Chan, Yau Sang; Cheung, Randy Chi Fai; Xia, Lixin; Wong, Jack Ho; Ng, Tzi Bun; Chan, Wai Yee

    2016-07-01

    Snake venoms are complex mixtures of small molecules and peptides/proteins, and most of them display certain kinds of bioactivities. They include neurotoxic, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic, myotoxic, and many different enzymatic activities. Snake envenomation is a significant health issue as millions of snakebites are reported annually. A large number of people are injured and die due to snake venom poisoning. However, several fatal snake venom toxins have found potential uses as diagnostic tools, therapeutic agent, or drug leads. In this review, different non-enzymatically active snake venom toxins which have potential therapeutic properties such as antitumor, antimicrobial, anticoagulating, and analgesic activities will be discussed. PMID:27245678

  9. Noninvasive Imaging of Administered Progenitor Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Steven R Bergmann, M.D., Ph.D.

    2012-12-03

    The objective of this research grant was to develop an approach for labeling progenitor cells, specifically those that we had identified as being able to replace ischemic heart cells, so that the distribution could be followed non-invasively. In addition, the research was aimed at determining whether administration of progenitor cells resulted in improved myocardial perfusion and function. The efficiency and toxicity of radiolabeling of progenitor cells was to be evaluated. For the proposed clinical protocol, subjects with end-stage ischemic coronary artery disease were to undergo a screening cardiac positron emission tomography (PET) scan using N-13 ammonia to delineate myocardial perfusion and function. If they qualified based on their PET scan, they would undergo an in-hospital protocol whereby CD34+ cells were stimulated by the administration of granulocytes-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF). CD34+ cells would then be isolated by apharesis, and labeled with indium-111 oxine. Cells were to be re-infused and subjects were to undergo single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) scanning to evaluate uptake and distribution of labeled progenitor cells. Three months after administration of progenitor cells, a cardiac PET scan was to be repeated to evaluate changes in myocardial perfusion and/or function. Indium oxine is a radiopharmaceutical for labeling of autologous lymphocytes. Indium-111 (In-111) decays by electron capture with a t{sub ½} of 67.2 hours (2.8 days). Indium forms a saturated complex that is neutral, lipid soluble, and permeates the cell membrane. Within the cell, the indium-oxyquinolone complex labels via indium intracellular chelation. Following leukocyte labeling, ~77% of the In-111 is incorporated in the cell pellet. The presence of red cells and /or plasma reduces the labeling efficacy. Therefore, the product needed to be washed to eliminate plasma proteins. This repeated washing can damage cells. The CD34 selected product was a 90

  10. Mutants of Escherichia coli Heat-Labile Toxin Act as Effective Mucosal Adjuvants for Nasal Delivery of an Acellular Pertussis Vaccine: Differential Effects of the Nontoxic AB Complex and Enzyme Activity on Th1 and Th2 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Elizabeth J.; McNeela, Edel; Murphy, Geraldine A.; Stewart, Helen; O'hagan, Derek; Pizza, Mariagrazia; Rappuoli, Rino; Mills, Kingston H. G.

    1999-01-01

    Mucosal delivery of vaccines is dependent on the identification of safe and effective adjuvants that can enhance the immunogenicity of protein antigens administered by nasal or oral routes. In this study we demonstrate that two mutants of Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin (LT), LTK63, which lacks ADP-ribosylating activity, and LTR72, which has partial enzyme activity, act as potent mucosal adjuvants for the nasal delivery of an acellular pertussis (Pa) vaccine. Both LTK63 and LTR72 enhanced antigen-specific serum immunoglobulin G (IgG), secretory IgA, and local and systemic T-cell responses. Furthermore, using the murine respiratory challenge model for infection with Bordetella pertussis, we demonstrated that a nasally delivered diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis (DTPa) combination vaccine formulated with LTK63 as an adjuvant conferred a high level of protection, equivalent to that generated with a parenterally delivered DTPa vaccine formulated with alum. This study also provides significant new information on the roles of the binding and enzyme components of LT in the modulation of Th1 and Th2 responses. LTK63, which lacks enzyme activity, promoted T-cell responses with a mixed Th1–Th2 profile, but LTR72, which retains partial enzyme activity, and the wild-type toxin, especially at low dose, induced a more polarized Th2-type response and very high IgA and IgG antibody titers. Our findings suggest that the nontoxic AB complex has broad adjuvant activity for T-cell responses and that the ADP-ribosyltransferase activity of the A subunit also appears to modulate cytokine production, but its effect on T-cell subtypes, as well as enhancing, may be selectively suppressive. PMID:10569737

  11. Crystal Structures of the Staphylococcal Toxin SSL5 in Complex With Sialyl-Lewis X Reveal a Conserved Binding Site That Shares Common Features With Viral And Bacterial Sialic Acid-Binding Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, H.M.; Basu, I.; Chung, M.C.; Caradoc-Davies, T.; Fraser, J.D.; Baker, E.N.

    2009-06-02

    Staphylococcus aureus is a significant human pathogen. Among its large repertoire of secreted toxins is a group of staphylococcal superantigen-like proteins (SSLs). These are homologous to superantigens but do not have the same activity. SSL5 is shown here to bind to human granulocytes and to the cell surface receptors for human IgA (Fc alphaRI) and P-selectin [P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1 (PSGL-1)] in a sialic acid (Sia)-dependent manner. Co-crystallization of SSL5 with the tetrasaccharide sialyl Lewis X (sLe(X)), a key determinant of PSGL-1 binding to P-selectin, led to crystal structures of the SSL5-sLe(X) complex at resolutions of 1.65 and 2.75 A for crystals at two pH values. In both structures, sLe(X) bound to a specific site on the surface of the C-terminal domain of SSL5 in a conformation identical with that bound by P-selectin. Conservation of the key carbohydrate binding residues indicates that this ability to bind human glycans is shared by a substantial subgroup of the SSLs, including SSL2, SSL3, SSL4, SSL5, SSL6, and SSL11. This indicates that the ability to target human glycans is an important property of this group of toxins. Structural comparisons also showed that the Sia binding site in SSL5 contains a substructure that is shared by other Sia binding proteins from bacteria as well as viruses and represents a common binding motif.

  12. Mutants of Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin act as effective mucosal adjuvants for nasal delivery of an acellular pertussis vaccine: differential effects of the nontoxic AB complex and enzyme activity on Th1 and Th2 cells.

    PubMed

    Ryan, E J; McNeela, E; Murphy, G A; Stewart, H; O'hagan, D; Pizza, M; Rappuoli, R; Mills, K H

    1999-12-01

    Mucosal delivery of vaccines is dependent on the identification of safe and effective adjuvants that can enhance the immunogenicity of protein antigens administered by nasal or oral routes. In this study we demonstrate that two mutants of Escherichia coli heat-labile toxin (LT), LTK63, which lacks ADP-ribosylating activity, and LTR72, which has partial enzyme activity, act as potent mucosal adjuvants for the nasal delivery of an acellular pertussis (Pa) vaccine. Both LTK63 and LTR72 enhanced antigen-specific serum immunoglobulin G (IgG), secretory IgA, and local and systemic T-cell responses. Furthermore, using the murine respiratory challenge model for infection with Bordetella pertussis, we demonstrated that a nasally delivered diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis (DTPa) combination vaccine formulated with LTK63 as an adjuvant conferred a high level of protection, equivalent to that generated with a parenterally delivered DTPa vaccine formulated with alum. This study also provides significant new information on the roles of the binding and enzyme components of LT in the modulation of Th1 and Th2 responses. LTK63, which lacks enzyme activity, promoted T-cell responses with a mixed Th1-Th2 profile, but LTR72, which retains partial enzyme activity, and the wild-type toxin, especially at low dose, induced a more polarized Th2-type response and very high IgA and IgG antibody titers. Our findings suggest that the nontoxic AB complex has broad adjuvant activity for T-cell responses and that the ADP-ribosyltransferase activity of the A subunit also appears to modulate cytokine production, but its effect on T-cell subtypes, as well as enhancing, may be selectively suppressive. PMID:10569737

  13. Photorhabdus luminescens W-14 insecticidal activity consists of at least two similar but distinct proteins. Purification and characterization of toxin A and toxin B.

    PubMed

    Guo, L; Fatig, R O; Orr, G L; Schafer, B W; Strickland, J A; Sukhapinda, K; Woodsworth, A T; Petell, J K

    1999-04-01

    Both the bacterium Photorhabdus luminescens alone and its symbiotic Photorhabdus-nematode complex are known to be highly pathogenic to insects. The nature of the insecticidal activity of Photorhabdus bacteria was investigated for its potential application as an insect control agent. It was found that in the fermentation broth of P. luminescens strain W-14, at least two proteins, toxin A and toxin B, independently contributed to the oral insecticidal activity against Southern corn rootworm. Purified toxin A and toxin B exhibited single bands on native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and two peptides of 208 and 63 kDa on SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The native molecular weight of both the toxin A and toxin B was determined to be approximately 860 kDa, suggesting that they are tetrameric. NH2-terminal amino acid sequencing and Western analysis using monospecific antibodies to each toxin demonstrated that the two toxins were distinct but homologous. The oral potency (LD50) of toxin A and toxin B against Southern corn rootworm larvae was determined to be similar to that observed with highly potent Bt toxins against lepidopteran pests. In addition, it was found that the two peptides present in toxin B could be processed in vitro from a 281-kDa protoxin by endogenous P. luminescens proteases. Proteolytic processing was shown to enhance insecticidal activity. PMID:10092674

  14. Array biosensor for detection of toxins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ligler, Frances S.; Taitt, Chris Rowe; Shriver-Lake, Lisa C.; Sapsford, Kim E.; Shubin, Yura; Golden, Joel P.

    2003-01-01

    The array biosensor is capable of detecting multiple targets rapidly and simultaneously on the surface of a single waveguide. Sandwich and competitive fluoroimmunoassays have been developed to detect high and low molecular weight toxins, respectively, in complex samples. Recognition molecules (usually antibodies) were first immobilized in specific locations on the waveguide and the resultant patterned array was used to interrogate up to 12 different samples for the presence of multiple different analytes. Upon binding of a fluorescent analyte or fluorescent immunocomplex, the pattern of fluorescent spots was detected using a CCD camera. Automated image analysis was used to determine a mean fluorescence value for each assay spot and to subtract the local background signal. The location of the spot and its mean fluorescence value were used to determine the toxin identity and concentration. Toxins were measured in clinical fluids, environmental samples and foods, with minimal sample preparation. Results are shown for rapid analyses of staphylococcal enterotoxin B, ricin, cholera toxin, botulinum toxoids, trinitrotoluene, and the mycotoxin fumonisin. Toxins were detected at levels as low as 0.5 ng mL(-1).

  15. Conditional Cooperativity of Toxin - Antitoxin Regulation Can Mediate Bistability between Growth and Dormancy

    PubMed Central

    Cataudella, Ilaria; Sneppen, Kim; Gerdes, Kenn; Mitarai, Namiko

    2013-01-01

    Many toxin-antitoxin operons are regulated by the toxin/antitoxin ratio by mechanisms collectively coined “conditional cooperativity”. Toxin and antitoxin form heteromers with different stoichiometric ratios, and the complex with the intermediate ratio works best as a transcription repressor. This allows transcription at low toxin level, strong repression at intermediate toxin level, and then again transcription at high toxin level. Such regulation has two interesting features; firstly, it provides a non-monotonous response to the concentration of one of the proteins, and secondly, it opens for ultra-sensitivity mediated by the sequestration of the functioning heteromers. We explore possible functions of conditional regulation in simple feedback motifs, and show that it can provide bistability for a wide range of parameters. We then demonstrate that the conditional cooperativity in toxin-antitoxin systems combined with the growth-inhibition activity of free toxin can mediate bistability between a growing state and a dormant state. PMID:24009488

  16. Conditional cooperativity of toxin - antitoxin regulation can mediate bistability between growth and dormancy.

    PubMed

    Cataudella, Ilaria; Sneppen, Kim; Gerdes, Kenn; Mitarai, Namiko

    2013-01-01

    Many toxin-antitoxin operons are regulated by the toxin/antitoxin ratio by mechanisms collectively coined "conditional cooperativity". Toxin and antitoxin form heteromers with different stoichiometric ratios, and the complex with the intermediate ratio works best as a transcription repressor. This allows transcription at low toxin level, strong repression at intermediate toxin level, and then again transcription at high toxin level. Such regulation has two interesting features; firstly, it provides a non-monotonous response to the concentration of one of the proteins, and secondly, it opens for ultra-sensitivity mediated by the sequestration of the functioning heteromers. We explore possible functions of conditional regulation in simple feedback motifs, and show that it can provide bistability for a wide range of parameters. We then demonstrate that the conditional cooperativity in toxin-antitoxin systems combined with the growth-inhibition activity of free toxin can mediate bistability between a growing state and a dormant state. PMID:24009488

  17. Functional Blood Progenitor Markers in Developing Human Liver Progenitors.

    PubMed

    Goldman, Orit; Cohen, Idan; Gouon-Evans, Valerie

    2016-08-01

    In the early fetal liver, hematopoietic progenitors expand and mature together with hepatoblasts, the liver progenitors of hepatocytes and cholangiocytes. Previous analyses of human fetal livers indicated that both progenitors support each other's lineage maturation and curiously share some cell surface markers including CD34 and CD133. Using the human embryonic stem cell (hESC) system, we demonstrate that virtually all hESC-derived hepatoblast-like cells (Hep cells) transition through a progenitor stage expressing CD34 and CD133 as well as GATA2, an additional hematopoietic marker that has not previously been associated with human hepatoblast development. Dynamic expression patterns for CD34, CD133, and GATA2 in hepatoblasts were validated in human fetal livers collected from the first and second trimesters of gestation. Knockdown experiments demonstrate that each gene also functions to regulate hepatic fate mostly in a cell-autonomous fashion, revealing unprecedented roles of fetal hematopoietic progenitor markers in human liver progenitors. PMID:27509132

  18. Naturally Occurring Food Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Dolan, Laurie C.; Matulka, Ray A.; Burdock, George A.

    2010-01-01

    Although many foods contain toxins as a naturally-occurring constituent or, are formed as the result of handling or processing, the incidence of adverse reactions to food is relatively low. The low incidence of adverse effects is the result of some pragmatic solutions by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other regulatory agencies through the creative use of specifications, action levels, tolerances, warning labels and prohibitions. Manufacturers have also played a role by setting limits on certain substances and developing mitigation procedures for process-induced toxins. Regardless of measures taken by regulators and food producers to protect consumers from natural food toxins, consumption of small levels of these materials is unavoidable. Although the risk for toxicity due to consumption of food toxins is fairly low, there is always the possibility of toxicity due to contamination, overconsumption, allergy or an unpredictable idiosyncratic response. The purpose of this review is to provide a toxicological and regulatory overview of some of the toxins present in some commonly consumed foods, and where possible, discuss the steps that have been taken to reduce consumer exposure, many of which are possible because of the unique process of food regulation in the United States. PMID:22069686

  19. Linking bacterial type I toxins with their actions.

    PubMed

    Brielle, Régine; Pinel-Marie, Marie-Laure; Felden, Brice

    2016-04-01

    Bacterial type I toxin-antitoxin systems consist of stable toxin-encoding mRNAs whose expression is counteracted by unstable RNA antitoxins. Accumulating evidence suggests that these players belong to broad regulatory networks influencing overall bacterial physiology. The majority of known transmembrane type I toxic peptides have conserved structural characteristics. However, recent studies demonstrated that their mechanisms of toxicity are diverse and complex. To better assess the current state of the art, type I toxins can be grouped into two classes according to their location and mechanisms of action: membrane-associated toxins acting by pore formation and/or by nucleoid condensation; and cytosolic toxins inducing nucleic acid cleavage. This classification will evolve as a result of future investigations. PMID:26874964

  20. Progenitors of type Ia supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maeda, Keiichi; Terada, Yukikatsu

    2016-07-01

    Natures of progenitors of type Ia Supernovae (SNe Ia) have not yet been clarified. There has been long and intensive discussion on whether the so-called single degenerate (SD) scenario or the double degenerate (DD) scenario, or anything else, could explain a major population of SNe Ia, but the conclusion has not yet been reached. With rapidly increasing observational data and new theoretical ideas, the field of studying the SN Ia progenitors has been quickly developing, and various new insights have been obtained in recent years. This paper aims at providing a summary of the current situation regarding the SN Ia progenitors, both in theory and observations. It seems difficult to explain the emerging diversity seen in observations of SNe Ia by a single population, and we emphasize that it is important to clarify links between different progenitor scenarios and different sub-classes of SNe Ia.

  1. Structural interactions of a voltage sensor toxin with lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Mihailescu, Mihaela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Milescu, Mirela; Gawrisch, Klaus; Swartz, Kenton J; White, Stephen

    2014-12-16

    Protein toxins from tarantula venom alter the activity of diverse ion channel proteins, including voltage, stretch, and ligand-activated cation channels. Although tarantula toxins have been shown to partition into membranes, and the membrane is thought to play an important role in their activity, the structural interactions between these toxins and lipid membranes are poorly understood. Here, we use solid-state NMR and neutron diffraction to investigate the interactions between a voltage sensor toxin (VSTx1) and lipid membranes, with the goal of localizing the toxin in the membrane and determining its influence on membrane structure. Our results demonstrate that VSTx1 localizes to the headgroup region of lipid membranes and produces a thinning of the bilayer. The toxin orients such that many basic residues are in the aqueous phase, all three Trp residues adopt interfacial positions, and several hydrophobic residues are within the membrane interior. One remarkable feature of this preferred orientation is that the surface of the toxin that mediates binding to voltage sensors is ideally positioned within the lipid bilayer to favor complex formation between the toxin and the voltage sensor. PMID:25453087

  2. Structural interactions of a voltage sensor toxin with lipid membranes

    PubMed Central

    Mihailescu, Mihaela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Milescu, Mirela; Gawrisch, Klaus; Swartz, Kenton J.; White, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Protein toxins from tarantula venom alter the activity of diverse ion channel proteins, including voltage, stretch, and ligand-activated cation channels. Although tarantula toxins have been shown to partition into membranes, and the membrane is thought to play an important role in their activity, the structural interactions between these toxins and lipid membranes are poorly understood. Here, we use solid-state NMR and neutron diffraction to investigate the interactions between a voltage sensor toxin (VSTx1) and lipid membranes, with the goal of localizing the toxin in the membrane and determining its influence on membrane structure. Our results demonstrate that VSTx1 localizes to the headgroup region of lipid membranes and produces a thinning of the bilayer. The toxin orients such that many basic residues are in the aqueous phase, all three Trp residues adopt interfacial positions, and several hydrophobic residues are within the membrane interior. One remarkable feature of this preferred orientation is that the surface of the toxin that mediates binding to voltage sensors is ideally positioned within the lipid bilayer to favor complex formation between the toxin and the voltage sensor. PMID:25453087

  3. Short Toxin-like Proteins Abound in Cnidaria Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Tirosh, Yitshak; Linial, Itai; Askenazi, Manor; Linial, Michal

    2012-01-01

    Cnidaria is a rich phylum that includes thousands of marine species. In this study, we focused on Anthozoa and Hydrozoa that are represented by the Nematostella vectensis (Sea anemone) and Hydra magnipapillata genomes. We present a method for ranking the toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes of Cnidaria. Toxin-like functions were revealed using ClanTox, a statistical machine-learning predictor trained on ion channel inhibitors from venomous animals. Fundamental features that were emphasized in training ClanTox include cysteines and their spacing along the sequences. Among the 83,000 proteins derived from Cnidaria representatives, we found 170 candidates that fulfill the properties of toxin-like-proteins, the vast majority of which were previously unrecognized as toxins. An additional 394 short proteins exhibit characteristics of toxin-like proteins at a moderate degree of confidence. Remarkably, only 11% of the predicted toxin-like proteins were previously classified as toxins. Based on our prediction methodology and manual annotation, we inferred functions for over 400 of these proteins. Such functions include protease inhibitors, membrane pore formation, ion channel blockers and metal binding proteins. Many of the proteins belong to small families of paralogs. We conclude that the evolutionary expansion of toxin-like proteins in Cnidaria contributes to their fitness in the complex environment of the aquatic ecosystem. PMID:23202321

  4. Regulation of toxin gene expression in Clostridium perfringens.

    PubMed

    Ohtani, Kaori; Shimizu, Tohru

    2015-05-01

    The Gram-positive, anaerobic, spore-forming, rod-shaped Clostridium perfringens is widely distributed in nature, especially in soil and the gastrointestinal tract of humans and animals. C. perfringens causes clostridial myonecrosis (or gas gangrene), enteritis and enterotoxemia in humans and livestock by producing numerous extracellular toxins and enzymes. The toxin gene expression is regulated by a two-component regulatory system and regulatory RNA VirR/VirS-VR-RNA cascade. The VirR/VirS system was originally found in a type A strain, but a recent report showed that it is also important for the toxin gene regulation in other types of strains. Two types of cell-cell signaling, i.e., agr-system and AI-2 signaling, are also important for the regulation of toxin genes. Several regulatory systems independent from the VirR/VirS system, including virX, the orphan histidine kinase ReeS and orphan response regulator RevR, are also involved in the regulation of toxin genes. In addition, the expression of toxin genes is upregulated after contact with Caco-2 cells. C. perfringens has a complex regulatory network for toxin gene expression and thus the coordination of toxin gene expression is important for the process of infection. PMID:25303832

  5. Membrane-Binding Mechanism of Clostridium perfringens Alpha-Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Oda, Masataka; Terao, Yutaka; Sakurai, Jun; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens alpha-toxin is a key mediator of gas gangrene, which is a life-threatening infection that manifests as fever, pain, edema, myonecrosis, and gas production. Alpha-toxin possesses phospholipase C and sphingomyelinase activities. The toxin is composed of an N-terminal domain (1–250 aa, N-domain), which is the catalytic site, and a C-terminal domain (251–370 aa, C-domain), which is the membrane-binding site. Immunization of mice with the C-domain of alpha-toxin prevents the gas gangrene caused by C. perfringens, whereas immunization with the N-domain has no effect. The central loop domain (55–93 aa), especially H….SW84Y85….G, plays an important role in the interaction with ganglioside GM1a. The toxin binds to lipid rafts in the presence of a GM1a/TrkA complex, and metabolites from phosphatidylcholine to diacylglycerol through the enzymatic activity of alpha-toxin itself. These membrane dynamics leads to the activation of endogenous PLCγ-1 via TrkA. In addition, treatment with alpha-toxin leads to the formation of diacylglycerol at membrane rafts in ganglioside-deficient DonQ cells; this in turn triggers endocytosis and cell death. This article summarizes the current the membrane-binding mechanism of alpha-toxin in detail. PMID:26633512

  6. The bacterial antitoxin HipB establishes a ternary complex with operator DNA and phosphorylated toxin HipA to regulate bacterial persistence

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Yurong; Behiels, Ester; Felix, Jan; Elegheert, Jonathan; Vergauwen, Bjorn; Devreese, Bart; Savvides, Savvas N.

    2014-01-01

    Nearly all bacteria exhibit a type of phenotypic growth described as persistence that is thought to underlie antibiotic tolerance and recalcitrant chronic infections. The chromosomally encoded high-persistence (Hip) toxin–antitoxin proteins HipASO and HipBSO from Shewanella oneidensis, a proteobacterium with unusual respiratory capacities, constitute a type II toxin–antitoxin protein module. Here we show that phosphorylated HipASO can engage in an unexpected ternary complex with HipBSO and double-stranded operator DNA that is distinct from the prototypical counterpart complex from Escherichia coli. The structure of HipBSO in complex with operator DNA reveals a flexible C-terminus that is sequestered by HipASO in the ternary complex, indicative of its role in binding HipASO to abolish its function in persistence. The structure of HipASO in complex with a non-hydrolyzable ATP analogue shows that HipASO autophosphorylation is coupled to an unusual conformational change of its phosphorylation loop. However, HipASO is unable to phosphorylate the translation factor Elongation factor Tu, contrary to previous reports, but in agreement with more recent findings. Our studies suggest that the phosphorylation state of HipA is an important factor in persistence and that the structural and mechanistic diversity of HipAB modules as regulatory factors in bacterial persistence is broader than previously thought. PMID:25056321

  7. [Toxins as a biological weapon].

    PubMed

    Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    The criteria for recognizing a chemical compound for the toxin are vague and gave it the possibility of inclusion in this group a number of biological agents. Toxins list is extensive, but the interest is focused on bacterial toxins, poisons derived from snake venoms, algae and plant proteins, and small molecules. Particular attention is focused on the so-called "sea" toxins, which include tetrodotoxin, brevetoxin and saxitoxin. This indicates the search for a new hitherto unknown potential bioterrorist threats. PMID:26449572

  8. Toxin plasmids of Clostridium perfringens.

    PubMed

    Li, Jihong; Adams, Vicki; Bannam, Trudi L; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Garcia, Jorge P; Uzal, Francisco A; Rood, Julian I; McClane, Bruce A

    2013-06-01

    In both humans and animals, Clostridium perfringens is an important cause of histotoxic infections and diseases originating in the intestines, such as enteritis and enterotoxemia. The virulence of this Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium is heavily dependent upon its prolific toxin-producing ability. Many of the ∼16 toxins produced by C. perfringens are encoded by large plasmids that range in size from ∼45 kb to ∼140 kb. These plasmid-encoded toxins are often closely associated with mobile elements. A C. perfringens strain can carry up to three different toxin plasmids, with a single plasmid carrying up to three distinct toxin genes. Molecular Koch's postulate analyses have established the importance of several plasmid-encoded toxins when C. perfringens disease strains cause enteritis or enterotoxemias. Many toxin plasmids are closely related, suggesting a common evolutionary origin. In particular, most toxin plasmids and some antibiotic resistance plasmids of C. perfringens share an ∼35-kb region containing a Tn916-related conjugation locus named tcp (transfer of clostridial plasmids). This tcp locus can mediate highly efficient conjugative transfer of these toxin or resistance plasmids. For example, conjugative transfer of a toxin plasmid from an infecting strain to C. perfringens normal intestinal flora strains may help to amplify and prolong an infection. Therefore, the presence of toxin genes on conjugative plasmids, particularly in association with insertion sequences that may mobilize these toxin genes, likely provides C. perfringens with considerable virulence plasticity and adaptability when it causes diseases originating in the gastrointestinal tract. PMID:23699255

  9. Phylogeny of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 isolated from cattle and clinically ill humans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cattle are a major reservoir for Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 (STEC O157) and harbor multiple genetic subtypes that do not all associate with human disease. STEC O157 evolved from an E. coli O55:H7 progenitor, however, a lack of genome sequence has hindered investigations on the dive...

  10. A common origin for the bacterial toxin-antitoxin systems parD and ccd, suggested by analyses of toxin/target and toxin/antitoxin interactions.

    PubMed

    Smith, Andrew B; López-Villarejo, Juan; Diago-Navarro, Elizabeth; Mitchenall, Lesley A; Barendregt, Arjan; Heck, Albert J; Lemonnier, Marc; Maxwell, Anthony; Díaz-Orejas, Ramón

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems encode two proteins, a potent inhibitor of cell proliferation (toxin) and its specific antidote (antitoxin). Structural data has revealed striking similarities between the two model TA toxins CcdB, a DNA gyrase inhibitor encoded by the ccd system of plasmid F, and Kid, a site-specific endoribonuclease encoded by the parD system of plasmid R1. While a common structural fold seemed at odds with the two clearly different modes of action of these toxins, the possibility of functional crosstalk between the parD and ccd systems, which would further point to their common evolutionary origin, has not been documented. Here, we show that the cleavage of RNA and the inhibition of protein synthesis by the Kid toxin, two activities that are specifically counteracted by its cognate Kis antitoxin, are altered, but not inhibited, by the CcdA antitoxin. In addition, Kis was able to inhibit the stimulation of DNA gyrase-mediated cleavage of DNA by CcdB, albeit less efficiently than CcdA. We further show that physical interactions between the toxins and antitoxins of the different systems do occur and define the stoichiometry of the complexes formed. We found that CcdB did not degrade RNA nor did Kid have any reproducible effect on the tested DNA gyrase activities, suggesting that these toxins evolved to reach different, rather than common, cellular targets. PMID:23029540

  11. CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Science Questions

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and ...

  12. CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Science Questions

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and ...

  13. [Detection of Staphylococcus aureus toxins using immuno-PCR].

    PubMed

    Maerle, A V; Riazantsev, D Iu; Dmitrenko, O A; Petrova, E Ia; Komaleva, R L; Sergeev, I V; Trofimov, D Iu; Zavriev, S K

    2014-01-01

    A highly sensitive test system, based on the method of immuno-PCR, was developed for the detection of two staphylococcal toxins: enterotoxin A (SEA) and toxic shock syndrome toxin (TSST). A key element of the developed systems was obtaining supramolecular complexes of bisbiotinylated oligodeoxynucleotides and streptavidin, which were used as DNA tags. Specificity studies showed no cross-reactivity when determining SEA and TSST. The sensitivity of detection of these toxins in the culture supernatants S. aureus was not less than 10 pg/mL. PMID:25895352

  14. Toxin-induced respiratory distress.

    PubMed

    McKay, Charles A

    2014-02-01

    This article describes the impact of various toxic substances on the airway and pulmonary system. Pulmonary anatomy and physiology provide the basis for understanding the response to toxin-induced injury. Simple asphyxiants displace oxygen from the inspired air. Respiratory irritants include water-soluble and water-insoluble compounds. Several inhaled agents produce direct airway injury, which may be mediated by caustic, thermal, and hydrocarbon exposures. Unique pulmonary toxins and toxicants are discussed, as well as inhaled toxin mixtures. Several inhaled toxins may also impair oxygen transport. The pulmonary system may also provide a mechanism for systemic toxin delivery on respiratory exposure. PMID:24275172

  15. [Protein toxins of Staphylococcus aureus].

    PubMed

    Shamsutdinov, A F; Tiurin, Iu A

    2014-01-01

    Main scientific-research studies regarding protein bacterial toxins of the most widespread bacteria that belong to Staphylococcus spp. genus and in particular the most pathogenic species for humans--Staphylococcus aureus, are analyzed. Structural and biological properties of protein toxins that have received the name of staphylococcus pyrogenic toxins (PTSAg) are presented. Data regarding genetic regulation of secretion and synthesis of these toxins and 3 main regulatory genetic systems (agr--accessory gene regulator, xpr--extracellular protein regulator, sar--staphylococcal accessory regulator) that coordinate synthesis of the most important protein toxins and enzymes for virulence of S. aureus, are presented. PMID:25051707

  16. Simultaneous characterization of progenitor cell compartments in adult human liver.

    PubMed

    Porretti, Laura; Cattaneo, Alessandra; Colombo, Federico; Lopa, Raffaella; Rossi, Giorgio; Mazzaferro, Vincenzo; Battiston, Carlo; Svegliati-Baroni, Gianluca; Bertolini, Francesco; Rebulla, Paolo; Prati, Daniele

    2010-01-01

    The human liver is a complex tissue consisting of epithelial, endothelial, hematopoietic, and mesenchymal elements that probably derive from multiple lineage-committed progenitors, but no comprehensive study aimed at identifying and characterizing intrahepatic precursors has yet been published. Cell suspensions for this study were obtained by enzymatic digestion of liver specimens taken from 20 patients with chronic liver disease and 13 multiorgan donors. Stem and progenitor cells were first isolated, amplified, and characterized ex vivo according to previously validated methods, and then optimized flow cytometry was used to assess their relative frequencies and characterize their immunophenotypes in the clinical specimens. Stem and progenitor cells committed to hematopoietic, endothelial, epithelial, and mesenchymal lineages were clearly identifiable in livers from both healthy and diseased subjects. Within the mononuclear liver cell compartment, epithelial progenitors [epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM)(+)/CD49f(+)/CD29(+)/CD45(-)] accounted for 2.7-3.5% whereas hematopoietic (CD34(+)/CD45(+)), endothelial [vascular endothelial growth factor-2 (KDR)(+)/CD146(+)/CD45(-)], and mesenchymal [CD73(+)/CD105(+)/CD90 (Thy-1)(+)/CD45 (-)] stem cells and progenitors accounted for smaller fractions (0.02-0.6%). The patients' livers had higher percentages of hematopoietic and endothelial precursors than those of the donors. In conclusion, we identified and characterized precursors committed to four different lineages in adult human liver. We also optimized a flow cytometry approach that will be useful in exploring the contribution of these cells to the pathogenesis of liver disease. PMID:19960544

  17. Studies on marine toxins: chemical and biological aspects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stonik, Valentin A.; Stonik, Inna V.

    2010-07-01

    The structures and mechanisms of biological action of the best known representatives of the main groups of marine toxins are presented. It is shown that many compounds have complex chemical structures and possess extremely high toxicities. Characteristic features of isolation, structure determination and syntheses of these compounds using the achievement of modern organic chemistry are discussed. The methods of identification and quantitative analysis of marine toxins are briefly reviewed.

  18. Embryonic Heart Progenitors and Cardiogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Brade, Thomas; Pane, Luna S.; Moretti, Alessandra; Chien, Kenneth R.; Laugwitz, Karl-Ludwig

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian heart is a highly specialized organ, comprised of many different cell types arising from distinct embryonic progenitor populations during cardiogenesis. Three precursor populations have been identified to contribute to different myocytic and nonmyocytic cell lineages of the heart: cardiogenic mesoderm cells (CMC), the proepicardium (PE), and cardiac neural crest cells (CNCCs). This review will focus on molecular cues necessary for proper induction, expansion, and lineage-specific differentiation of these progenitor populations during cardiac development in vivo. Moreover, we will briefly discuss how the knowledge gained on embryonic heart progenitor biology can be used to develop novel therapeutic strategies for the management of congenital heart disease as well as for improvement of cardiac function in ischemic heart disease. PMID:24086063

  19. SVM-based prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins identifies toxin innovation in an Australian tarantula.

    PubMed

    Wong, Emily S W; Hardy, Margaret C; Wood, David; Bailey, Timothy; King, Glenn F

    2013-01-01

    Spider neurotoxins are commonly used as pharmacological tools and are a popular source of novel compounds with therapeutic and agrochemical potential. Since venom peptides are inherently toxic, the host spider must employ strategies to avoid adverse effects prior to venom use. It is partly for this reason that most spider toxins encode a protective proregion that upon enzymatic cleavage is excised from the mature peptide. In order to identify the mature toxin sequence directly from toxin transcripts, without resorting to protein sequencing, the propeptide cleavage site in the toxin precursor must be predicted bioinformatically. We evaluated different machine learning strategies (support vector machines, hidden Markov model and decision tree) and developed an algorithm (SpiderP) for prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins. Our strategy uses a support vector machine (SVM) framework that combines both local and global sequence information. Our method is superior or comparable to current tools for prediction of propeptide sequences in spider toxins. Evaluation of the SVM method on an independent test set of known toxin sequences yielded 96% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Furthermore, we sequenced five novel peptides (not used to train the final predictor) from the venom of the Australian tarantula Selenotypus plumipes to test the accuracy of the predictor and found 80% sensitivity and 99.6% 8-mer specificity. Finally, we used the predictor together with homology information to predict and characterize seven groups of novel toxins from the deeply sequenced venom gland transcriptome of S. plumipes, which revealed structural complexity and innovations in the evolution of the toxins. The precursor prediction tool (SpiderP) is freely available on ArachnoServer (http://www.arachnoserver.org/spiderP.html), a web portal to a comprehensive relational database of spider toxins. All training data, test data, and scripts used are available from the Spider

  20. SVM-Based Prediction of Propeptide Cleavage Sites in Spider Toxins Identifies Toxin Innovation in an Australian Tarantula

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Emily S. W.; Hardy, Margaret C.; Wood, David; Bailey, Timothy; King, Glenn F.

    2013-01-01

    Spider neurotoxins are commonly used as pharmacological tools and are a popular source of novel compounds with therapeutic and agrochemical potential. Since venom peptides are inherently toxic, the host spider must employ strategies to avoid adverse effects prior to venom use. It is partly for this reason that most spider toxins encode a protective proregion that upon enzymatic cleavage is excised from the mature peptide. In order to identify the mature toxin sequence directly from toxin transcripts, without resorting to protein sequencing, the propeptide cleavage site in the toxin precursor must be predicted bioinformatically. We evaluated different machine learning strategies (support vector machines, hidden Markov model and decision tree) and developed an algorithm (SpiderP) for prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins. Our strategy uses a support vector machine (SVM) framework that combines both local and global sequence information. Our method is superior or comparable to current tools for prediction of propeptide sequences in spider toxins. Evaluation of the SVM method on an independent test set of known toxin sequences yielded 96% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Furthermore, we sequenced five novel peptides (not used to train the final predictor) from the venom of the Australian tarantula Selenotypus plumipes to test the accuracy of the predictor and found 80% sensitivity and 99.6% 8-mer specificity. Finally, we used the predictor together with homology information to predict and characterize seven groups of novel toxins from the deeply sequenced venom gland transcriptome of S. plumipes, which revealed structural complexity and innovations in the evolution of the toxins. The precursor prediction tool (SpiderP) is freely available on ArachnoServer (http://www.arachnoserver.org/spiderP.html), a web portal to a comprehensive relational database of spider toxins. All training data, test data, and scripts used are available from the Spider

  1. The Progenitors of Thermonuclear Supernovae

    SciTech Connect

    Piersanti, L.; Straniero, O.; Tornambe, A.; Dominguez, I.

    2009-05-03

    In the framework of the rotating Double Degenerate Scenario for type Ia Supernovae progenitors, we show that the dichotomy between explosive events in early and late type galaxies can be easily explained. Assuming that more massive progenitors produce slow-decline (high-luminosity) light curve, it comes out that, at the current age of the Universe, in late type galaxies the continuous star formation provides very massive exploding objects (prompt component) corresponding to slow-decline (bright) SNe; on the other hand, in early type galaxies, where star formation ended many billions years ago, only low mass ''normal luminosity'' objects (delayed component) are present.

  2. Dinophysis Toxins: Causative Organisms, Distribution and Fate in Shellfish

    PubMed Central

    Reguera, Beatriz; Riobó, Pilar; Rodríguez, Francisco; Díaz, Patricio A.; Pizarro, Gemita; Paz, Beatriz; Franco, José M.; Blanco, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Several Dinophysis species produce diarrhoetic toxins (okadaic acid and dinophysistoxins) and pectenotoxins, and cause gastointestinal illness, Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP), even at low cell densities (<103 cells·L−1). They are the main threat, in terms of days of harvesting bans, to aquaculture in Northern Japan, Chile, and Europe. Toxicity and toxin profiles are very variable, more between strains than species. The distribution of DSP events mirrors that of shellfish production areas that have implemented toxin regulations, otherwise misinterpreted as bacterial or viral contamination. Field observations and laboratory experiments have shown that most of the toxins produced by Dinophysis are released into the medium, raising questions about the ecological role of extracelular toxins and their potential uptake by shellfish. Shellfish contamination results from a complex balance between food selection, adsorption, species-specific enzymatic transformations, and allometric processes. Highest risk areas are those combining Dinophysis strains with high cell content of okadaates, aquaculture with predominance of mytilids (good accumulators of toxins), and consumers who frequently include mussels in their diet. Regions including pectenotoxins in their regulated phycotoxins will suffer from much longer harvesting bans and from disloyal competition with production areas where these toxins have been deregulated. PMID:24447996

  3. Toxins and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Alan L

    2014-12-15

    Components from venoms have stimulated many drug discovery projects, with some notable successes. These are briefly reviewed, from captopril to ziconotide. However, there have been many more disappointments on the road from toxin discovery to approval of a new medicine. Drug discovery and development is an inherently risky business, and the main causes of failure during development programmes are outlined in order to highlight steps that might be taken to increase the chances of success with toxin-based drug discovery. These include having a clear focus on unmet therapeutic needs, concentrating on targets that are well-validated in terms of their relevance to the disease in question, making use of phenotypic screening rather than molecular-based assays, and working with development partners with the resources required for the long and expensive development process. PMID:25448391

  4. Progenitor Cells and Podocyte Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Shankland, Stuart J.; Pippin, Jeffrey W.; Duffield, Jeremy S.

    2014-01-01

    The very limited ability of adult podocytes to proliferate in vivo is clinically significant because: podocytes form a vascular barrier which is functionally critical to the nephron; podocyte hypoplasia is a characteristic of disease; and inadequate regeneration of podocytes is a major cause of persistent podocyte hypoplasia. Excessive podocyte loss or inadequate replacement leads to glomerulosclerosis in many progressive kidney diseases. Thus, restoration of podocyte cell density is almost certainly reliant on regeneration by podocyte progenitors. However such putative progenitors have remained elusive until recently. In this review we describe the developmental processes leading to podocyte and parietal epithelial cell (PEC) formation during glomerulogenesis. We compare evidence that in normal human kidneys PECs expressing ‘progenitor’ markers CD133 and CD24 can differentiate into podocytes in vitro and in vivo with evidence from animal models suggesting a more limited role of PEC-capacity to serve as podocyte progenitors in adults. We will highlight tantalizing new evidence that specialized vascular wall cells of afferent arterioles including those which produce renin in healthy kidney, provide a novel local progenitor source of new PECs and podocytes in response to podocyte hypoplasia in the adult, and draw comparisons with glomerulogenesis. PMID:25217270

  5. In vitro pancreas organogenesis from dispersed mouse embryonic progenitors.

    PubMed

    Greggio, Chiara; De Franceschi, Filippo; Figueiredo-Larsen, Manuel; Grapin-Botton, Anne

    2014-01-01

    The pancreas is an essential organ that regulates glucose homeostasis and secretes digestive enzymes. Research on pancreas embryogenesis has led to the development of protocols to produce pancreatic cells from stem cells (1). The whole embryonic organ can be cultured at multiple stages of development (2-4). These culture methods have been useful to test drugs and to image developmental processes. However the expansion of the organ is very limited and morphogenesis is not faithfully recapitulated since the organ flattens. We propose three-dimensional (3D) culture conditions that enable the efficient expansion of dissociated mouse embryonic pancreatic progenitors. By manipulating the composition of the culture medium it is possible to generate either hollow spheres, mainly composed of pancreatic progenitors expanding in their initial state, or, complex organoids which progress to more mature expanding progenitors and differentiate into endocrine, acinar and ductal cells and which spontaneously self-organize to resemble the embryonic pancreas. We show here that the in vitro process recapitulates many aspects of natural pancreas development. This culture system is suitable to investigate how cells cooperate to form an organ by reducing its initial complexity to few progenitors. It is a model that reproduces the 3D architecture of the pancreas and that is therefore useful to study morphogenesis, including polarization of epithelial structures and branching. It is also appropriate to assess the response to mechanical cues of the niche such as stiffness and the effects on cell´s tensegrity. PMID:25079453

  6. In Vitro Pancreas Organogenesis from Dispersed Mouse Embryonic Progenitors

    PubMed Central

    Grapin-Botton, Anne

    2014-01-01

    The pancreas is an essential organ that regulates glucose homeostasis and secretes digestive enzymes. Research on pancreas embryogenesis has led to the development of protocols to produce pancreatic cells from stem cells 1. The whole embryonic organ can be cultured at multiple stages of development 2-4. These culture methods have been useful to test drugs and to image developmental processes. However the expansion of the organ is very limited and morphogenesis is not faithfully recapitulated since the organ flattens. We propose three-dimensional (3D) culture conditions that enable the efficient expansion of dissociated mouse embryonic pancreatic progenitors. By manipulating the composition of the culture medium it is possible to generate either hollow spheres, mainly composed of pancreatic progenitors expanding in their initial state, or, complex organoids which progress to more mature expanding progenitors and differentiate into endocrine, acinar and ductal cells and which spontaneously self-organize to resemble the embryonic pancreas. We show here that the in vitro process recapitulates many aspects of natural pancreas development. This culture system is suitable to investigate how cells cooperate to form an organ by reducing its initial complexity to few progenitors. It is a model that reproduces the 3D architecture of the pancreas and that is therefore useful to study morphogenesis, including polarization of epithelial structures and branching. It is also appropriate to assess the response to mechanical cues of the niche such as stiffness and the effects on cell´s tensegrity. PMID:25079453

  7. LPS induces pulp progenitor cell recruitment via complement activation.

    PubMed

    Chmilewsky, F; Jeanneau, C; Laurent, P; About, I

    2015-01-01

    Complement system, a major component of the natural immunity, has been recently identified as an important mediator of the dentin-pulp regeneration process through STRO-1 pulp cell recruitment by the C5a active fragment. Moreover, it has been shown recently that under stimulation with lipoteichoic acid, a complex component of the Gram-positive bacteria cell wall, human pulp fibroblasts are able to synthesize all proteins required for complement activation. However, Gram-negative bacteria, which are also involved in tooth decay, are known as powerful activators of complement system and inflammation. Here, we investigated the role of Gram-negative bacteria-induced complement activation on the pulp progenitor cell recruitment using lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a major component of all Gram-negative bacteria. Our results show that incubating pulp fibroblasts with LPS induced membrane attack complex formation and C5a release in serum-free fibroblast cultures. The produced C5a binds to the pulp progenitor cells' membrane and induces their migration toward the LPS stimulation chamber, as revealed by the dynamic transwell migration assays. The inhibition of this migration by the C5aR-specific antagonist W54011 indicates that the pulp progenitor migration is mediated by the interaction between C5a and C5aR. Our findings demonstrate, for the first time, a direct interaction between the recruitment of progenitor pulp cells and the activation of complement system generated by pulp fibroblast stimulation with LPS. PMID:25359783

  8. Method for detecting biological toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Ligler, F.S.; Campbell, J.R.

    1992-01-01

    Biological toxins are indirectly detected by using polymerase chain reaction to amplify unique nucleic acid sequences coding for the toxins or enzymes unique to toxin synthesis. Buffer, primers coding for the unique nucleic acid sequences and an amplifying enzyme are added to a sample suspected of containing the toxin. The mixture is then cycled thermally to exponentially amplify any of these unique nucleic acid sequences present in the sample. The amplified sequences can be detected by various means, including fluorescence. Detection of the amplified sequences is indicative of the presence of toxin in the original sample. By using more than one set of labeled primers, the method can be used to simultaneously detect several toxins in a sample.

  9. Recombinant Toxins for Cancer Treatment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pastan, Ira; Fitzgerald, David

    1991-11-01

    Recombinant toxins target cell surface receptors and antigens on tumor cells. They kill by mechanisms different from conventional chemotherapy, so that cross resistance to conventional chemotherapeutic agents should not be a problem. Furthermore, they are not mutagens and should not induce secondary malignancies or accelerate progression of benign malignancies. They can be mass-produced cheaply in bacteria as homogeneous proteins. Either growth factor-toxin fusions or antibody-toxin fusions can be chosen, depending on the cellular target.

  10. Toxin Plasmids of Clostridium perfringens

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jihong; Adams, Vicki; Bannam, Trudi L.; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Garcia, Jorge P.; Uzal, Francisco A.; Rood, Julian I.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY In both humans and animals, Clostridium perfringens is an important cause of histotoxic infections and diseases originating in the intestines, such as enteritis and enterotoxemia. The virulence of this Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium is heavily dependent upon its prolific toxin-producing ability. Many of the ∼16 toxins produced by C. perfringens are encoded by large plasmids that range in size from ∼45 kb to ∼140 kb. These plasmid-encoded toxins are often closely associated with mobile elements. A C. perfringens strain can carry up to three different toxin plasmids, with a single plasmid carrying up to three distinct toxin genes. Molecular Koch's postulate analyses have established the importance of several plasmid-encoded toxins when C. perfringens disease strains cause enteritis or enterotoxemias. Many toxin plasmids are closely related, suggesting a common evolutionary origin. In particular, most toxin plasmids and some antibiotic resistance plasmids of C. perfringens share an ∼35-kb region containing a Tn916-related conjugation locus named tcp (transfer of clostridial plasmids). This tcp locus can mediate highly efficient conjugative transfer of these toxin or resistance plasmids. For example, conjugative transfer of a toxin plasmid from an infecting strain to C. perfringens normal intestinal flora strains may help to amplify and prolong an infection. Therefore, the presence of toxin genes on conjugative plasmids, particularly in association with insertion sequences that may mobilize these toxin genes, likely provides C. perfringens with considerable virulence plasticity and adaptability when it causes diseases originating in the gastrointestinal tract. PMID:23699255

  11. Ricin detection: tracking active toxin.

    PubMed

    Bozza, William P; Tolleson, William H; Rosado, Leslie A Rivera; Zhang, Baolin

    2015-01-01

    Ricin is a plant toxin with high bioterrorism potential due to its natural abundance and potency in inducing cell death. Early detection of the active toxin is essential for developing appropriate countermeasures. Here we review concepts for designing ricin detection methods, including mechanism of action of the toxin, advantages and disadvantages of current detection assays, and perspectives on the future development of rapid and reliable methods for detecting ricin in environmental samples. PMID:25481398

  12. Mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) plays a role in Pasteurella multocida toxin (PMT)-induced protein synthesis and proliferation in Swiss 3T3 cells.

    PubMed

    Oubrahim, Hammou; Wong, Allison; Wilson, Brenda A; Chock, P Boon

    2013-01-25

    Pasteurella multocida toxin (PMT) is a potent mitogen known to activate several signaling pathways via deamidation of a conserved glutamine residue in the α subunit of heterotrimeric G-proteins. However, the detailed mechanism behind mitogenic properties of PMT is unknown. Herein, we show that PMT induces protein synthesis, cell migration, and proliferation in serum-starved Swiss 3T3 cells. Concomitantly PMT induces phosphorylation of ribosomal S6 kinase (S6K1) and its substrate, ribosomal S6 protein (rpS6), in quiescent 3T3 cells. The extent of the phosphorylation is time and PMT concentration dependent, and is inhibited by rapamycin and Torin1, the two specific inhibitors of the mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1). Interestingly, PMT-mediated mTOR signaling activation was observed in MEF WT but not in Gα(q/11) knock-out cells. These observations are consistent with the data indicating that PMT-induced mTORC1 activation proceeds via the deamidation of Gα(q/11), which leads to the activation of PLCβ to generate diacylglycerol and inositol trisphosphate, two known activators of the PKC pathway. Exogenously added diacylglycerol or phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, known activators of PKC, leads to rpS6 phosphorylation in a rapamycin-dependent manner. Furthermore, PMT-induced rpS6 phosphorylation is inhibited by PKC inhibitor, Gö6976. Although PMT induces epidermal growth factor receptor activation, it exerts no effect on PMT-induced rpS6 phosphorylation. Together, our findings reveal for the first time that PMT activates mTORC1 through the Gα(q/11)/PLCβ/PKC pathway. The fact that PMT-induced protein synthesis and cell migration is partially inhibited by rapamycin indicates that these processes are in part mediated by the mTORC1 pathway. PMID:23223576

  13. Interactions between Autophagy and Bacterial Toxins: Targets for Therapy?

    PubMed Central

    Mathieu, Jacques

    2015-01-01

    Autophagy is a physiological process involved in defense mechanisms for clearing intracellular bacteria. The autophagic pathway is finely regulated and bacterial toxins interact with this process in a complex manner. Bacterial toxins also interact significantly with many biochemical processes. Evaluations of the effects of bacterial toxins, such as endotoxins, pore-forming toxins and adenylate cyclases, on autophagy could support the development of new strategies for counteracting bacterial pathogenicity. Treatment strategies could focus on drugs that enhance autophagic processes to improve the clearance of intracellular bacteria. However, further in vivo studies are required to decipher the upregulation of autophagy and potential side effects limiting such approaches. The capacity of autophagy activation strategies to improve the outcome of antibiotic treatment should be investigated in the future. PMID:26248079

  14. Lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Clark, C.G.; Armstrong, G.D. )

    1990-12-01

    We have investigated human T-lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin by affinity isolation and photoaffinity labeling procedures. T lymphocytes were obtained from peripheral human blood, surface iodinated, and solubilized in Triton X-100. The iodinated mixture was then passed through pertussis toxin-agarose, and the fractions were analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Autoradiography of the fixed, dried gels revealed several bands in the pertussis toxin-bound fraction that were not observed in fractions obtained from histone or fetuin-agarose. Further investigations employed a photoaffinity labeling reagent, sulfosuccinimidyl 2-(p-azido-salicylamido)-1,3'-dithiopropionate, to identify pertussis toxin receptors in freshly isolated peripheral blood monocytic cells, T lymphocytes, and Jurkat cells. In all three cell systems, the pertussis toxin affinity probe specifically labeled a single protein species with an apparent molecular weight of 70,000 that was not observed when the procedure was performed in the presence of excess unmodified pertussis toxin. A protein comparable in molecular weight to the one detected by the photoaffinity labeling technique was also observed among the species that bound to pertussis toxin-agarose. The results suggest that pertussis toxin may bind to a 70,000-Da receptor in human T lymphocytes.

  15. The assay of diphtheria toxin

    PubMed Central

    Gerwing, Julia; Long, D. A.; Mussett, Marjorie V.

    1957-01-01

    A precise assay of diphtheria toxin is described, based on the linear relationship between the diameter of the skin reaction to, and logarithm of the dose of, toxin. It eliminates the need for preliminary titrations, is economical, provides information about the slope of the log-dose response lines and, therefore, of the validity of the assay, and yields limits of error of potency from the internal evidence of the assay. A study has been made of the effects of avidity, combining power, toxicity and buffering on the assay of diphtheria toxins against the International Standards for both Diphtheria Antitoxin and Schick-Test Toxin. All the toxins assayed against the standard toxin, whatever their other properties might be, gave log-dose response lines of similar slope provided that they were diluted in buffered physiological saline. The assays were therefore valid. These experiments were repeated concurrently in non-immune and in actively immunized guinea-pigs, and comparable figures for potency obtained in both groups. The result was not significantly affected by the avidity or combining power of the toxin. However, non-avid toxins gave low values in Schick units when assayed, by the Römer & Sames technique, in terms of the International Standard for Diphtheria Antitoxin. The problem of the ultimate standard and the implications of these findings are discussed. PMID:13511133

  16. TOXINS FROM CYANOBACTERIA IN WATER

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project is part of a larger U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) effort, which includes the Office of Water, to investigate algal toxins in surface water supplies and drinking water. Toxins produced by cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) are among the most potent known ...

  17. Botulinum toxin: Bioweapon & magic drug

    PubMed Central

    Dhaked, Ram Kumar; Singh, Manglesh Kumar; Singh, Padma; Gupta, Pallavi

    2010-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins, causative agents of botulism in humans, are produced by Clostridium botulinum, an anaerobic spore-former Gram positive bacillus. Botulinum neurotoxin poses a major bioweapon threat because of its extreme potency and lethality; its ease of production, transport, and misuse; and the need for prolonged intensive care among affected persons. A single gram of crystalline toxin, evenly dispersed and inhaled, can kill more than one million people. The basis of the phenomenal potency of botulinum toxin is enzymatic; the toxin is a zinc proteinase that cleaves neuronal vesicle associated proteins responsible for acetylcholine release into the neuromuscular junction. As a military or terrorist weapon, botulinum toxin could be disseminated via aerosol or by contamination of water or food supplies, causing widespread casualties. A fascinating aspect of botulinum toxin research in recent years has been development of the most potent toxin into a molecule of significant therapeutic utility. It is the first biological toxin which is licensed for treatment of human diseases. In the late 1980s, Canada approved use of the toxin to treat strabismus, in 2001 in the removal of facial wrinkles and in 2002, the FDA in the United States followed suit. The present review focuses on both warfare potential and medical uses of botulinum neurotoxin. PMID:21149997

  18. Differences in the toxin profiles of Alexandrium ostenfeldii (Dinophyceae) strains isolated from different geographic origins: Evidence of paralytic toxin, spirolide, and gymnodimine.

    PubMed

    Salgado, Pablo; Riobó, Pilar; Rodríguez, Francisco; Franco, José M; Bravo, Isabel

    2015-09-01

    Among toxin-producing dinoflagellates of the genus Alexandrium, Alexandrium ostenfeldii is the only species able to produce paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) toxins, spirolides (SPXs) and gymnodimines (GYMs). In this study we characterized and compared three A. ostenfeldii strains isolated from the Baltic, Mediterranean, and southern Chile Seas with respect to their toxin profiles, morphology, and phylogeny. Toxin analyses by HPLC-FD and LC-HRMS revealed differences in the toxin profiles of the three strains. The PSP toxin profiles of the southern Chile and Baltic strains were largely the same and included gonyautoxin (GTX)-3, GTX-2, and saxitoxin (STX), although the total PSP toxin content of the Chilean strain (105.83 ± 72.15 pg cell(-1)) was much higher than that of the Baltic strain (4.04 ± 1.93 pg cell(-1)). However, the Baltic strain was the only strain that expressed detectable amounts of analogues of GYM-A and GYM-B/-C (48.27 ± 26.12 pg GYM-A equivalents cell(-1)). The only toxin expressed by the Mediterranean strain was 13-desmethyl SPX-C (13dMeC; 2.85 ± 4.76 pg cell(-1)). Phylogenetic analysis based on the LSU rRNA showed that the studied strains belonged to distinct molecular clades. The toxin profiles determined in this study provide further evidence of the taxonomic complexity of this species. PMID:26093028

  19. PROGENITORS OF RECOMBINING SUPERNOVA REMNANTS

    SciTech Connect

    Moriya, Takashi J.

    2012-05-01

    Usual supernova remnants have either ionizing plasma or plasma in collisional ionization equilibrium, i.e., the ionization temperature is lower than or equal to the electron temperature. However, the existence of recombining supernova remnants, i.e., supernova remnants with ionization temperature higher than the electron temperature, has been recently confirmed. One suggested way to have recombining plasma in a supernova remnant is to have a dense circumstellar medium at the time of the supernova explosion. If the circumstellar medium is dense enough, collisional ionization equilibrium can be established in the early stage of the evolution of the supernova remnant and subsequent adiabatic cooling, which occurs after the shock wave gets out of the dense circumstellar medium, makes the electron temperature lower than the ionization temperature. We study the circumstellar medium around several supernova progenitors and show which supernova progenitors can have a circumstellar medium dense enough to establish collisional ionization equilibrium soon after the explosion. We find that the circumstellar medium around red supergiants (especially massive ones) and the circumstellar medium dense enough to make Type IIn supernovae can establish collisional ionization equilibrium soon after the explosion and can evolve to become recombining supernova remnants. Wolf-Rayet stars and white dwarfs have the possibility to be recombining supernova remnants but the fraction is expected to be very small. As the occurrence rate of the explosions of red supergiants is much higher than that of Type IIn supernovae, the major progenitors of recombining supernova remnants are likely to be red supergiants.

  20. Tarantula toxins use common surfaces for interacting with Kv and ASIC ion channels.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Kanchan; Zamanian, Maryam; Bae, Chanhyung; Milescu, Mirela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Tilley, Drew C; Sack, Jon T; Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Kim, Jae Il; Swartz, Kenton J

    2015-01-01

    Tarantula toxins that bind to voltage-sensing domains of voltage-activated ion channels are thought to partition into the membrane and bind to the channel within the bilayer. While no structures of a voltage-sensor toxin bound to a channel have been solved, a structural homolog, psalmotoxin (PcTx1), was recently crystalized in complex with the extracellular domain of an acid sensing ion channel (ASIC). In the present study we use spectroscopic, biophysical and computational approaches to compare membrane interaction properties and channel binding surfaces of PcTx1 with the voltage-sensor toxin guangxitoxin (GxTx-1E). Our results show that both types of tarantula toxins interact with membranes, but that voltage-sensor toxins partition deeper into the bilayer. In addition, our results suggest that tarantula toxins have evolved a similar concave surface for clamping onto α-helices that is effective in aqueous or lipidic physical environments. PMID:25948544

  1. Computational approaches for designing potent and selective analogs of peptide toxins as novel therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Kuyucak, Serdar; Norton, Raymond S

    2015-01-01

    Peptide toxins provide valuable therapeutic leads for many diseases. As they bind to their targets with high affinity, potency is usually ensured. However, toxins also bind to off-target receptors, causing potential side effects. Thus, a major challenge in generating drugs from peptide toxins is ensuring their specificity for their intended targets. Computational methods can play an important role in solving such design problems through construction of accurate models of receptor–toxin complexes and calculation of binding free energies. Here we review the computational methods used for this purpose and their application to toxins targeting ion channels. We describe ShK and HsTX1 toxins, high-affinity blockers of the voltage-gated potassium channel Kv1.3, which could be developed as therapeutic agents for autoimmune diseases. PMID:25406005

  2. Evolution of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157: eight major lineages of human and cattle origin strain signature genotypes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cattle are a major reservoir for Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 (STEC O157) and harbor genetic subtypes that do not all associate with human disease. STEC O157 evolved from an E. coli O55:H7 progenitor, however, depauperate nucleotide polymorphism discovery from cattle and human origin...

  3. Binding of ATP by pertussis toxin and isolated toxin subunits

    SciTech Connect

    Hausman, S.Z.; Manclark, C.R.; Burns, D.L. )

    1990-07-03

    The binding of ATP to pertussis toxin and its components, the A subunit and B oligomer, was investigated. Whereas, radiolabeled ATP bound to the B oligomer and pertussis toxin, no binding to the A subunit was observed. The binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin and the B oligomer was inhibited by nucleotides. The relative effectiveness of the nucleotides was shown to be ATP > GTP > CTP > TTP for pertussis toxin and ATP > GTP > TTP > CTP for the B oligomer. Phosphate ions inhibited the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin in a competitive manner; however, the presence of phosphate ions was essential for binding of ATP to the B oligomer. The toxin substrate, NAD, did not affect the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin, although the glycoprotein fetuin significantly decreased binding. These results suggest that the binding site for ATP is located on the B oligomer and is distinct from the enzymatically active site but may be located near the eukaryotic receptor binding site.

  4. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    PubMed Central

    Verherstraeten, Stefanie; Goossens, Evy; Valgaeren, Bonnie; Pardon, Bart; Timbermont, Leen; Haesebrouck, Freddy; Ducatelle, Richard; Deprez, Piet; Wade, Kristin R.; Tweten, Rodney; Van Immerseel, Filip

    2015-01-01

    The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin), a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC). PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250–300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis. PMID:26008232

  5. Food toxin detection with atomic force microscope

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Externally introduced toxins or internal spoilage correlated pathogens and their metabolites are all potential sources of food toxins. To prevent and protect unsafe food, many food toxin detection techniques have been developed to detect various toxins for quality control. Although several routine m...

  6. Detecting and discriminating among Shiga toxins

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The virulence associated with Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections is from the Shiga toxins produced by the E. coli strain. Although Shiga toxins are associated with E. coli, the expression of the toxins is actually controlled by a temperate lambdoid phage that infects the host. ...

  7. Botulinum toxin for pain.

    PubMed

    Casale, Roberto; Tugnoli, Valeria

    2008-01-01

    Botulinum toxin (BTX) injection is being increasingly used 'off label' in the management of chronic pain. Data support the hypothesis of a direct analgesic effect of BTX, different to that exerted on muscle. Although the pain-reducing effect of BTX is mainly due to its ability to block acetylcholine release at the synapse, other effects on the nervous system are also thought to be involved. BTX affects cholinergic transmission in both the somatic and the autonomic nervous systems. Proposed mechanisms of action of BTX for pain relief of trigger points, muscular spasms, fibromyalgia and myofascial pain include direct action on muscle and indirect effects via action at the neuromuscular junction. Invitro and invivo data have shown that BTX has specific antinociceptive activity relating to its effects on inflammation, axonal transport, ganglion inhibition, and spinal and suprasegmental level inhibition. Our review of the mechanisms of action, efficacy, administration techniques and therapeutic dosage of BTX for the management of chronic pain in a variety of conditions shows that although muscular tone and movement disorders remain the most important therapeutic applications for BTX, research suggests that BTX can also provide benefits related to effects on cholinergic control of the vascular system, autonomic function, and cholinergic control of nociceptive and antinociceptive systems. Furthermore, it appears that BTX may influence the peripheral and central nervous systems. The therapeutic potential of BTX depends mainly on the ability to deliver the toxin to the target structures, cholinergic or otherwise. Evidence suggests that BTX can be administered at standard dosages in pain disorders, where the objective is alteration of muscle tone. For conditions requiring an analgesic effect, the optimal therapeutic dosage of BTX remains to be defined. PMID:18095750

  8. Binding of nicotinamide–adenine dinucleotides to diphtheria toxin

    PubMed Central

    Montanaro, L.; Sperti, Simonetta

    1967-01-01

    1. Changes in protein fluorescence have been utilized in determining the stoicheiometry and dissociation constants of the complexes of diphtheria toxin with NADH2, NAD, NADPH2 and NADP. 2. The binding stoicheiometry is 2moles of NADH2 and 1mole of NADPH2/mole of diphtheria toxin. The binding sites for NADH2 appear to be equivalent and independent. 3. The toxin shows a higher affinity for the reduced than for the oxidized forms of the nucleotides. 4. Dissociation constants at 0·01I, pH7 and 25° are 0·7×10−6m for NADH2 and 0·45×10−6m for NADPH2. Dissociation constants increase with increasing ionic strength, indicating that the binding is mainly electrostatic. 5. Bound NADH2 and NADPH2 may be activated to fluoresce by the transfer of energy from the excited aromatic amino acids of the toxin. Activation and emission spectra of bound and free nucleotides are compared. 6. Since NAD and NADH2 are cofactors specifically required for the inhibition of protein synthesis by diphtheria toxin, the possible role of toxin–nucleotide complexes is discussed in this regard. PMID:4384596

  9. Shiga Toxin Producing Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Bryan, Allen; Youngster, Ilan; McAdam, Alexander J

    2015-06-01

    Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) is among the common causes of foodborne gastroenteritis. STEC is defined by the production of specific toxins, but within this pathotype there is a diverse group of organisms. This diversity has important consequences for understanding the pathogenesis of the organism, as well as for selecting the optimum strategy for diagnostic testing in the clinical laboratory. This review includes discussions of the mechanisms of pathogenesis, the range of manifestations of infection, and the several different methods of laboratory detection of Shiga toxin-producing E coli. PMID:26004641

  10. Diphtheria toxin-based targeted toxin therapy for brain tumors.

    PubMed

    Li, Yan Michael; Vallera, Daniel A; Hall, Walter A

    2013-09-01

    Targeted toxins (TT) are molecules that bind cell surface antigens or receptors such as the transferrin or interleukin-13 receptor that are overexpressed in cancer. After internalization, the toxin component kills the cell. These recombinant proteins consist of an antibody or carrier ligand coupled to a modified plant or bacterial toxin such as diphtheria toxin (DT). These fusion proteins are very effective against brain cancer cells that are resistant to radiation therapy and chemotherapy. TT have shown an acceptable profile for toxicity and safety in animal studies and early clinical trials have demonstrated a therapeutic response. This review summarizes the characteristics of DT-based TT, the animal studies in malignant brain tumors and early clinical trial results. Obstacles to the successful treatment of brain tumors include poor penetration into tumor, the immune response to DT and cancer heterogeneity. PMID:23695514

  11. [Shiga toxin and tetanus toxin as a potential biologic weapon].

    PubMed

    Toczyska, Izabela; Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    Toxins produced by the bacteria are of particular interest as potential cargo combat possible for use in a terrorist attack or war. Shiga toxin is usually produced by shiga toxigenic strains of Escherichia coli (STEC - shigatoxigenic Escherichia coli). To infection occurs mostly after eating contaminated beef. Clinical syndromes associated with Shiga toxin diarrhea, hemorrhagic colitis, hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS - hemolytic uremic syndrome) or thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. Treatment is symptomatic. In HUS, in which mortality during an epidemic reaches 20%, extending the kidney injury dialysis may be necessary. Exposure to tetanus toxin produced by Clostridium tetani, resulting in the most generalized tetanus, characterized by increased muscle tension and painful contractions of individual muscle groups. In the treatment beyond symptomatic behavior (among others spasticity medications, anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants) is used tetanus antitoxin and antibiotics (metronidazole choice). A common complication is acute respiratory failure - then it is necessary to implement mechanical ventilation. PMID:26449578

  12. Trophic accumulation of PSP toxins in zooplankton during Alexandrium fundyense blooms in Casco Bay, Gulf of Maine, April June 1998. I. Toxin levels in A. fundyense and zooplankton size fractions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doucette, Gregory J.; Turner, Jefferson T.; Powell, Christine L.; Keafer, Bruce A.; Anderson, Donald M.

    2005-09-01

    concentrations in the 20-64 μm, A. fundyense-containing size fraction implied fluctuations in the algal toxin cell quota, which ranged from ca. 10 to 2000 fmol STX equiv. cell -1. Some of this variability may reflect the changing presence in this size fraction of grazers (e.g., tintinnids) capable of toxin accumulation, causing an upward bias in A. fundyense toxin cell quota estimates. Overall, the extent of PSP toxin transfer into zooplankton will be determined by a complex interaction among several factors, including A. fundyense and grazer abundance, algal toxin cell quota, and zooplankton community composition. An ability to predict zooplankton toxin accumulation will require further investigation of the relationships between these and other factors, aimed specifically at modeling the process of toxin trophic transfer to grazers and ultimately to their predators.

  13. Epsilon toxin: a fascinating pore-forming toxin.

    PubMed

    Popoff, Michel R

    2011-12-01

    Epsilon toxin (ETX) is produced by strains of Clostridium perfringens classified as type B or type D. ETX belongs to the heptameric β-pore-forming toxins including aerolysin and Clostridium septicum alpha toxin, which are characterized by the formation of a pore through the plasma membrane of eukaryotic cells consisting in a β-barrel of 14 amphipatic β strands. By contrast to aerolysin and C. septicum alpha toxin, ETX is a much more potent toxin and is responsible for enterotoxemia in animals, mainly sheep. ETX induces perivascular edema in various tissues and accumulates in particular in the kidneys and brain, where it causes edema and necrotic lesions. ETX is able to pass through the blood-brain barrier and stimulate the release of glutamate, which accounts for the symptoms of nervous excitation observed in animal enterotoxemia. At the cellular level, ETX causes rapid swelling followed by cell death involving necrosis. The precise mode of action of ETX remains to be determined. ETX is a powerful toxin, however, it also represents a unique tool with which to vehicle drugs into the central nervous system or target glutamatergic neurons. PMID:21535407

  14. Bacterial Community Affects Toxin Production by Gymnodinium catenatum

    PubMed Central

    Albinsson, Maria E.; Negri, Andrew P.; Blackburn, Susan I.; Bolch, Christopher J. S.

    2014-01-01

    The paralytic shellfish toxin (PST)-producing dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum grows in association with a complex marine bacterial community that is both essential for growth and can alter culture growth dynamics. Using a bacterial community replacement approach, we examined the intracellular PST content, production rate, and profile of G. catenatum cultures grown with bacterial communities of differing complexity and composition. Clonal offspring were established from surface-sterilized resting cysts (produced by sexual crosses of strain GCDE06 and strain GCLV01) and grown with: 1) complex bacterial communities derived from each of the two parent cultures; 2) simplified bacterial communities composed of the G. catenatum-associated bacteria Marinobacter sp. strain DG879 or Alcanivorax sp. strain DG881; 3) a complex bacterial community associated with an untreated, unsterilized sexual cross of the parents. Toxin content (STX-equivalent per cell) of clonal offspring (134–197 fmol STX cell−1) was similar to the parent cultures (169–206 fmol STX cell−1), however cultures grown with single bacterial types contained less toxin (134–146 fmol STX cell−1) than offspring or parent cultures grown with more complex mixed bacterial communities (152–176 fmol STX cell−1). Specific toxin production rate (fmol STX day−1) was strongly correlated with culture growth rate. Net toxin production rate (fmol STX cell−1 day−1) did not differ among treatments, however, mean net toxin production rate of offspring was 8-fold lower than the parent cultures, suggesting that completion of the sexual lifecycle in laboratory cultures leads to reduced toxin production. The PST profiles of offspring cultures were most similar to parent GCDE06 with the exception of cultures grown with Marinobacter sp. DG879 which produced higher proportions of dcGTX2+3 and GC1+2, and lower proportions of C1+2 and C3+4. Our data demonstrate that the bacterial community can alter

  15. CD44 Promotes Intoxication by the Clostridial Iota-Family Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Wigelsworth, Darran J.; Ruthel, Gordon; Schnell, Leonie; Herrlich, Peter; Blonder, Josip; Veenstra, Timothy D.; Carman, Robert J.; Wilkins, Tracy D.; Van Nhieu, Guy Tran; Pauillac, Serge; Gibert, Maryse; Sauvonnet, Nathalie; Stiles, Bradley G.; Popoff, Michel R.; Barth, Holger

    2012-01-01

    Various pathogenic clostridia produce binary protein toxins associated with enteric diseases of humans and animals. Separate binding/translocation (B) components bind to a protein receptor on the cell surface, assemble with enzymatic (A) component(s), and mediate endocytosis of the toxin complex. Ultimately there is translocation of A component(s) from acidified endosomes into the cytosol, leading to destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. Our results revealed that CD44, a multifunctional surface protein of mammalian cells, facilitates intoxication by the iota family of clostridial binary toxins. Specific antibody against CD44 inhibited cytotoxicity of the prototypical Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Versus CD44+ melanoma cells, those lacking CD44 bound less toxin and were dose-dependently resistant to C. perfringens iota, as well as Clostridium difficile and Clostridium spiroforme iota-like, toxins. Purified CD44 specifically interacted in vitro with iota and iota-like, but not related Clostridium botulinum C2, toxins. Furthermore, CD44 knockout mice were resistant to iota toxin lethality. Collective data reveal an important role for CD44 during intoxication by a family of clostridial binary toxins. PMID:23236484

  16. Strategies to improve the insecticidal activity of Cry toxins from Bacillus thuringiensis.

    PubMed Central

    Pardo-López, L.; Muñoz-Garay, C.; Porta, H.; Rodríguez-Almazán, C.; Soberón, M.; Bravo, A.

    2009-01-01

    Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxins have been widely used in the control of insect pests either as spray products or expressed in transgenic crops. These proteins are pore forming toxins with a complex mechanism of action that involves the sequential interaction with several toxin-receptors. Cry toxins are specific against susceptible larvae and although they are often highly effective, some insect pests are not affected by them or show low susceptibility. In addition, the development of resistance threatens their effectiveness, so strategies to cope with all these problems are necessary. In this review we will discuss and compare the different strategies that have been used to improve insecticidal activity of Cry toxins. The activity of Cry toxins can be enhanced by using additional proteins in the bioassay like serine protease inhibitors, chitinases, Cyt toxins, or a fragment of cadherin receptor containing a toxin-binding site. On the other hand, different modifications performed in the toxin gene such as site directed mutagenesis, introduction of cleavage sites in specific regions of the protein, and deletion of small fragments from the amino-terminal region lead to improved toxicity or overcome resistance, representing interesting alternatives for insect pest control. PMID:18773932

  17. Role of cAMP- and IKK-2-Dependent Signaling Pathways in Functional Stimulation of Mesenchymal Progenitor Cells with Alkaloid Songorine.

    PubMed

    Zyuz'kov, G N; Zhdanov, V V; Udut, E V; Miroshnichenko, L A; Chaikovskii, A V; Simanina, E V; Polyakova, T Yu; Minakova, M Yu; Udut, V V; Tolstikova, T G; Shul'ts, E E; Stavrova, L A; Burmina, Ya V; Suslov, N I; Dygai, A M

    2015-09-01

    The role of cAMP- and IKK-2-dependent pathways in stimulation of the growth capacity of mesenchymal progenitor cells with alkaloid songorine was studied in vitro. Inhibitors of adenylate cyclase and IKK-2 were shown to abolish the increase in proliferative activity of progenitor cells. Moreover, blockade of the inhibitory kinase complex was accompanied by a decrease in the intensity of progenitor cell differentiation. PMID:26472093

  18. [Today's threat of ricin toxin].

    PubMed

    From, Sławomir; Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    Since the late 70s of the last century there were more than 700 incidents related to the use of the ricin toxin. For this reason, CDC (Center of Disease Control and Prevention) recognized toxin as a biological weapon category B. The lethal dose of ricin toxin after parenteral administration is 0.0001 mg/kg and after oral administration 0.2 mg. The first symptoms of poisoning occur within a few hours after application of toxin as a nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In the final stage there are observed: cardiac arrhythmia, collapse and symptoms suggestive of involvement of the central nervous system. Stage immediately preceding death is a state of coma. The ricin toxin is still the substance against which action has no optimal antidote. Developed a vaccine called RiVax is waiting for its registration. It should be pointed out that the availability of a ricin toxin makes it possible to use it for real bioterrorists. PMID:26449579

  19. [Toxins of Clostridium perfringens].

    PubMed

    Morris, W E; Fernández-Miyakawa, M E

    2009-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens is an anaerobic gram-positive spore-forming bacillus. It is one of the pathogens with larger distribution in the environment; it can be isolated from soil and water samples, which also belongs to the intestinal flora of animals and humans. However, on some occasions it can act as an opportunistic pathogen, causing diseases such as gas gangrene, enterotoxemia in sheep and goats and lamb dysentery, among others. In human beings, it is associated to diseases such as food poisoning, necrotic enterocolitis of the infant and necrotic enteritis or pigbel in Papua-New Guinea tribes. The renewed interest existing nowadays in the study of C. perfringens as a veterinarian and human pathogen, together with the advance of molecular biology, had enabled science to have deeper knowledge of the biology and pathology of these bacteria. In this review, we discuss and update the principal aspects of C. perfringens intestinal pathology, in terms of the toxins with major medical relevance at present. PMID:20085190

  20. Induction of apoptosis by Shiga toxins

    PubMed Central

    Tesh, Vernon L

    2010-01-01

    Shiga toxins comprise a family of structurally and functionally related protein toxins expressed by Shigella dysenteriae serotype 1 and multiple serotypes of Escherichia coli. While the capacity of Shiga toxins to inhibit protein synthesis by catalytic inactivation of eukaryotic ribosomes has been well described, it is also apparent that Shiga toxins trigger apoptosis in many cell types. This review presents evidence that Shiga toxins induce apoptosis of epithelial, endothelial, leukocytic, lymphoid and neuronal cells. Apoptotic signaling pathways activated by the toxins are reviewed with an emphasis on signaling mechanisms that are shared among different cell types. Data suggesting that Shiga toxins induce apoptosis through the endoplasmic reticulum stress response and clinical evidence demonstrating apoptosis in humans infected with Shiga toxin-producing bacteria are briefly discussed. The potential for use of Shiga toxins to induce apoptosis in cancer cells is briefly reviewed. PMID:20210553

  1. Antibody-based biological toxin detection

    SciTech Connect

    Menking, D.E.; Goode, M.T.

    1995-12-01

    Fiber optic evanescent fluorosensors are under investigation in our laboratory for the study of drug-receptor interactions for detection of threat agents and antibody-antigen interactions for detection of biological toxins. In a direct competition assay, antibodies against Cholera toxin, Staphylococcus Enterotoxin B or ricin were noncovalently immobilized on quartz fibers and probed with fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC) - labeled toxins. In the indirect competition assay, Cholera toxin or Botulinum toxoid A was immobilized onto the fiber, followed by incubation in an antiserum or partially purified anti-toxin IgG. These were then probed with FITC-anti-IgG antibodies. Unlabeled toxins competed with labeled toxins or anti-toxin IgG in a dose dependent manner and the detection of the toxins was in the nanomolar range.

  2. Overview of Aerosolized Florida Red Tide Toxins: Exposures and Effects

    PubMed Central

    Fleming, Lora E.; Backer, Lorraine C.; Baden, Daniel G.

    2005-01-01

    Florida red tide is caused by Karenia brevis, a dinoflagellate that periodically blooms, releasing its potent neurotoxin, brevetoxin, into the surrounding waters and air along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Exposure to Florida red tide toxins has been associated with adverse human health effects and massive fish and marine mammal deaths. The articles in this mini-monograph describe the ongoing interdisciplinary and interagency research program that characterizes the exposures and health effects of aerosolized Florida red tide toxins (brevetoxins). The interdisciplinary research program uses animal models and laboratory studies to develop hypotheses and apply these findings to in situ human exposures. Our ultimate goal is to develop appropriate prevention measures and medical interventions to mitigate or prevent adverse health effects from exposure to complex mixtures of aerosolized red tide toxins. PMID:15866773

  3. Pro and antiinflammatory properties of toxins from animal venoms.

    PubMed

    Farsky, Sandra H P; Antunes, Edson; Mello, Suzana B V

    2005-06-01

    Accidents evoked by venomous animals are common in tropical regions. In Brazil, envenomation evoked by snakes, spiders and scorpions are an important public health problem. Their venoms are composed of a great number of toxins, which are capable of acting on tissue and plasma components with consequent toxic and pharmacological effects. On the other hand, the diversity of venom composition makes them important source of toxins that can be employed as scientific tools. Here we describe the mechanisms of anti and pro-inflammatory properties of toxins of Bothrops and Crotalus genus snakes and Loxosceles and Phoneutria genus spider venoms. The emphasis was to summarise, both in vivo and in vitro, studies that focused on the action of phospholipases, metalloproteinases and sphingomyelinase D on vascular and cellular aspects of the process as well as the complex network of chemical mediators involved. PMID:16101549

  4. The Regulatory Networks That Control Clostridium difficile Toxin Synthesis.

    PubMed

    Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle; Peltier, Johann; Dupuy, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic clostridia cause many human and animal diseases, which typically arise as a consequence of the production of potent exotoxins. Among the enterotoxic clostridia, Clostridium difficile is the main causative agent of nosocomial intestinal infections in adults with a compromised gut microbiota caused by antibiotic treatment. The symptoms of C. difficile infection are essentially caused by the production of two exotoxins: TcdA and TcdB. Moreover, for severe forms of disease, the spectrum of diseases caused by C. difficile has also been correlated to the levels of toxins that are produced during host infection. This observation strengthened the idea that the regulation of toxin synthesis is an important part of C. difficile pathogenesis. This review summarizes our current knowledge about the regulators and sigma factors that have been reported to control toxin gene expression in response to several environmental signals and stresses, including the availability of certain carbon sources and amino acids, or to signaling molecules, such as the autoinducing peptides of quorum sensing systems. The overlapping regulation of key metabolic pathways and toxin synthesis strongly suggests that toxin production is a complex response that is triggered by bacteria in response to particular states of nutrient availability during infection. PMID:27187475

  5. The Regulatory Networks That Control Clostridium difficile Toxin Synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle; Peltier, Johann; Dupuy, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic clostridia cause many human and animal diseases, which typically arise as a consequence of the production of potent exotoxins. Among the enterotoxic clostridia, Clostridium difficile is the main causative agent of nosocomial intestinal infections in adults with a compromised gut microbiota caused by antibiotic treatment. The symptoms of C. difficile infection are essentially caused by the production of two exotoxins: TcdA and TcdB. Moreover, for severe forms of disease, the spectrum of diseases caused by C. difficile has also been correlated to the levels of toxins that are produced during host infection. This observation strengthened the idea that the regulation of toxin synthesis is an important part of C. difficile pathogenesis. This review summarizes our current knowledge about the regulators and sigma factors that have been reported to control toxin gene expression in response to several environmental signals and stresses, including the availability of certain carbon sources and amino acids, or to signaling molecules, such as the autoinducing peptides of quorum sensing systems. The overlapping regulation of key metabolic pathways and toxin synthesis strongly suggests that toxin production is a complex response that is triggered by bacteria in response to particular states of nutrient availability during infection. PMID:27187475

  6. Binding Affinity of Glycoconjugates to BACILLUS Spores and Toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasol, Aveen; Eassa, Souzan; Tarasenko, Olga

    2010-04-01

    Early recognition of Bacillus cereus group species is important since they can cause food-borne illnesses and deadly diseases in humans. Glycoconjugates (GCs) are carbohydrates covalently linked to non-sugar moieties including lipids, proteins or other entities. GCs are involved in recognition and signaling processes intrinsic to biochemical functions in cells. They also stimulate cell-cell adhesion and subsequent recognition and activation of receptors. We have demonstrated that GCs are involved in Bacillus cereus spore recognition. In the present study, we have investigated whether GCs possess the ability to bind and recognize B. cereus spores and Bacillus anthracis recombinant single toxins (sTX) and complex toxins (cTX). The affinity of GCs to spores + sTX and spores + cTX toxins was studied in the binding essay. Our results demonstrated that GC9 and GC10 were able to selectively bind to B. cereus spores and B. anthracis toxins. Different binding affinities for GCs were found toward Bacillus cereus spores + sTX and spores + cTX. Dilution of GCs does not impede the recognition and binding. Developed method provides a tool for simultaneous recognition and targeting of spores, bacteria toxins, and/or other entities.

  7. Fusarial toxins: secondary metabolites of Fusarium fungi.

    PubMed

    Nesic, Ksenija; Ivanovic, Snezana; Nesic, Vladimir

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to mycotoxins occurs worldwide, even though there are geographic and climatic differences in the amounts produced and occurrence of these substances.Mycotoxins are secondary chemical metabolites of different fungi. They are natural contaminants of cereals, so their presence is often inevitable. Among many genera that produce mycotoxins, Fusarium fungi are the most widespread in cereal-growing areas of the planet. Fusarium fungi produce a diversity of mycotoxin types, whose distributions are also diverse. What is produced and where it is produced is influenced primarily by environmental conditions, and crop production and storage methods. The amount of toxin produced depends on physical (viz., moisture, relative humidity, temperature, and mechanical damage), chemical (viz., carbon dioxide,oxygen, composition of substrate, insecticides and fungicides), and biological factors (viz., plant variety, stress, insects, spore load, etc.). Moisture and temperature have a major influence on mold growth rate and mycotoxin production.Among the most toxic and prevalent fusaria) toxins are the following: zearalenone,fumonisins, moniliformin and trichothecenes (T-2/HT-2 toxin, deoxynivalenol,diacetoxyscirpenol, nivalenol). Zearalenone (ZEA; ZON, F-2 toxin) isaphy to estrogenic compound, primarily a field contaminant, which exhibits estrogenic activity and has been implicated in numerous mycotoxicoses of farm animals,especially pigs. Recently, evidence suggests that ZEA has potential to stimulate the growth of human breast cancer cells. Fumonisins are also cancer-promoting metabolites,of which Fumonisin 8 I (FBI) is the most important. Moniliformin (MON) isalso highly toxic to both animals and humans. Trichothecenes are classified as gastrointestinal toxins, dermatotoxins, immunotoxins, hematotoxins, and gene toxins.T-2 and HT-2 toxin, and diacetoxyscirpenol (DAS, anguidine) are the most toxic mycotoxins among the trichothecene group. Deoxynivalenol (DON, vomitoxin) and

  8. Hs3st3-modified heparan sulfate controls KIT+ progenitor expansion by regulating 3-O-sulfotransferases

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Vaishali N.; Lombaert, Isabelle M. A.; Cowherd, Samuel N.; Shworak, Nicholas W.; Xu, Yongmei; Liu, Jian; Hoffman, Matthew P.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The exquisite control of growth factor function by heparan sulfate (HS) is dictated by the tremendous structural heterogeneity of sulfated modifications. It is not known how specific HS structures control growth factor-dependent progenitor expansion during organogenesis. We isolated KIT+ progenitors from fetal salivary glands during a stage of rapid progenitor expansion and profiled HS biosynthetic enzyme expression. Enzymes generating a specific type of 3-O-sulfated-HS (3-O-HS) are enriched, and FGF10/FGFR2b signaling directly regulates their expression. Bioengineered 3-O-HS binds FGFR2b and stabilizes FGF10/FGFR2b complexes in a receptor- and growth factor-specific manner. Rapid autocrine feedback increases 3-O-HS, KIT and progenitor expansion. Knockdown of multiple Hs3st isoforms limits fetal progenitor expansion, but is rescued with bioengineered 3-O-HS, which also increases adult progenitor expansion. Rapidly altering a specific 3-O-sulfated epitope provides a cellular mechanism to modulate the response to FGFR2b signaling and control progenitor expansion. 3-O-HS may expand KIT+ progenitors in vitro for regenerative therapy. PMID:24960693

  9. A yeast killer toxin screen provides insights into A/B toxin entry, trafficking and killing mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Susheela Y.; Stirling, Peter C.; Stimpson, Helen E. M.; Gießelmann, Esther; Schmitt, Manfred J.; Drubin, David G.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Like Ricin, Shiga, and Cholera toxins, yeast K28 is an A/B toxin that depends on endocytosis and retrograde trafficking for toxicity. Knowledge of the specific proteins, lipids, and mechanisms required for trafficking and killing by these toxins remains incomplete. Since K28 is a model for clinically relevant toxins, we screened over 5000 yeast mutants, identifying 365 that affect K28 sensitivity. Hypersensitive mutants revealed cytoprotective pathways, including stress-activated signaling and protein degradation. Resistant mutants clustered to endocytic, lipid organization and cell wall biogenesis pathways. Furthermore, GPI anchors and transcriptional regulation are important for K28-cell binding. Strikingly, the AP2 complex, which in metazoans links endocytic cargo to the clathrin coat, but had no assigned function in yeast, was critical for K28 toxicity. Yeast AP2 localizes to endocytic sites and has a cargo-specific function in K28 uptake. This comprehensive genetic analysis identified conserved processes important for A/B toxin trafficking and killing. PMID:19853568

  10. Extracellular matrix-modulated Heartless signaling in Drosophila blood progenitors regulates their differentiation via a Ras/ETS/FOG pathway and target of rapamycin function.

    PubMed

    Dragojlovic-Munther, Michelle; Martinez-Agosto, Julian A

    2013-12-15

    Maintenance of hematopoietic progenitors ensures a continuous supply of blood cells during the lifespan of an organism. Thus, understanding the molecular basis for progenitor maintenance is a continued focus of investigation. A large pool of undifferentiated blood progenitors are maintained in the Drosophila hematopoietic organ, the larval lymph gland, by a complex network of signaling pathways that are mediated by niche-, progenitor-, or differentiated hemocyte-derived signals. In this study we examined the function of the Drosophila fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR), Heartless, a critical regulator of early lymph gland progenitor specification in the late embryo, during larval lymph gland hematopoiesis. Activation of Heartless signaling in hemocyte progenitors by its two ligands, Pyramus and Thisbe, is both required and sufficient to induce progenitor differentiation and formation of the plasmatocyte-rich lymph gland cortical zone. We identify two transcriptional regulators that function downstream of Heartless signaling in lymph gland progenitors, the ETS protein, Pointed, and the Friend-of-GATA (FOG) protein, U-shaped, which are required for this Heartless-induced differentiation response. Furthermore, cross-talk of Heartless and target of rapamycin signaling in hemocyte progenitors is required for lamellocyte differentiation downstream of Thisbe-mediated Heartless activation. Finally, we identify the Drosophila heparan sulfate proteoglycan, Trol, as a critical negative regulator of Heartless ligand signaling in the lymph gland, demonstrating that sequestration of differentiation signals by the extracellular matrix is a unique mechanism employed in blood progenitor maintenance that is of potential relevance to many other stem cell niches. PMID:23603494

  11. Extracellular matrix-modulated Heartless signaling in Drosophila blood progenitors regulates their differentiation via a Ras/ETS/FOG pathway and target of rapamycin function

    PubMed Central

    Dragojlovic-Munther, Michelle; Martinez-Agosto, Julian A

    2014-01-01

    Maintenance of hematopoietic progenitors ensures a continuous supply of blood cells during the lifespan of an organism. Thus, understanding the molecular basis for progenitor maintenance is a continued focus of investigation. A large pool of undifferentiated blood progenitors are maintained in the Drosophila hematopoietic organ, the larval lymph gland, by a complex network of signaling pathways that are mediated by niche-, progenitor-, or differentiated hemocyte-derived signals. In this study we examined the function of the Drosophila fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR), Heartless, a critical regulator of early lymph gland progenitor specification in the late embryo, during larval lymph gland hematopoiesis. Activation of Heartless signaling in hemocyte progenitors by its two ligands, Pyramus and Thisbe, is both required and sufficient to induce progenitor differentiation and formation of the plasmatocyte-rich lymph gland cortical zone. We identify two transcriptional regulators that function downstream of Heartless signaling in lymph gland progenitors, the ETS protein, Pointed, and the Friend-of-GATA (FOG) protein, U-shaped, which are required for this Heartless-induced differentiation response. Furthermore, cross-talk of Heartless and target of rapamycin signaling in hemocyte progenitors is required for lamellocyte differentiation downstream of Thisbe-mediated Heartless activation. Finally, we identify the Drosophila heparan sulfate proteoglycan, Trol, as a critical negative regulator of Heartless ligand signaling in the lymph gland, demonstrating that sequestration of differentiation signals by the extracellular matrix is a unique mechanism employed in blood progenitor maintenance that is of potential relevance to many other stem cell niches. PMID:23603494

  12. DISCRIMINATING THE PROGENITOR TYPE OF SUPERNOVA REMNANTS WITH IRON K-SHELL EMISSION

    SciTech Connect

    Yamaguchi, Hiroya; Petre, Robert; Enoto, Teruaki; Badenes, Carles; Nakano, Toshio; Hiraga, Junko S.; Castro, Daniel; Hughes, John P.; Maeda, Yoshitomo; Nobukawa, Masayoshi; Uchida, Hiroyuki; Safi-Harb, Samar; Slane, Patrick O.; Smith, Randall K.

    2014-04-20

    Supernova remnants (SNRs) retain crucial information about both their parent explosion and circumstellar material left behind by their progenitor. However, the complexity of the interaction between supernova ejecta and ambient medium often blurs this information, and it is not uncommon for the basic progenitor type (Ia or core-collapse) of well-studied remnants to remain uncertain. Here we present a powerful new observational diagnostic to discriminate between progenitor types and constrain the ambient medium density of SNRs using solely Fe K-shell X-ray emission. We analyze all extant Suzaku observations of SNRs and detect Fe Kα emission from 23 young or middle-aged remnants, including five first detections (IC 443, G292.0+1.8, G337.2-0.7, N49, and N63A). The Fe Kα centroids clearly separate progenitor types, with the Fe-rich ejecta in Type Ia remnants being significantly less ionized than in core-collapse SNRs. Within each progenitor group, the Fe Kα luminosity and centroid are well correlated, with more luminous objects having more highly ionized Fe. Our results indicate that there is a strong connection between explosion type and ambient medium density, and suggest that Type Ia supernova progenitors do not substantially modify their surroundings at radii of up to several parsecs. We also detect a K-shell radiative recombination continuum of Fe in W49B and IC 443, implying a strong circumstellar interaction in the early evolutionary phases of these core-collapse remnants.

  13. Canonical Wnt signaling transiently stimulates proliferation and enhances neurogenesis in neonatal neural progenitor cultures

    SciTech Connect

    Hirsch, Cordula; Campano, Louise M.; Woehrle, Simon; Hecht, Andreas . E-mail: andreas.hecht@mol-med.uni-freiburg.de

    2007-02-01

    Canonical Wnt signaling triggers the formation of heterodimeric transcription factor complexes consisting of {beta}-catenin and T cell factors, and thereby controls the execution of specific genetic programs. During the expansion and neurogenic phases of embryonic neural development canonical Wnt signaling initially controls proliferation of neural progenitor cells, and later neuronal differentiation. Whether Wnt growth factors affect neural progenitor cells postnatally is not known. Therefore, we have analyzed the impact of Wnt signaling on neural progenitors isolated from cerebral cortices of newborn mice. Expression profiling of pathway components revealed that these cells are fully equipped to respond to Wnt signals. However, Wnt pathway activation affected only a subset of neonatal progenitors and elicited a limited increase in proliferation and neuronal differentiation in distinct subsets of cells. Moreover, Wnt pathway activation only transiently stimulated S-phase entry but did not support long-term proliferation of progenitor cultures. The dampened nature of the Wnt response correlates with the predominant expression of inhibitory pathway components and the rapid actuation of negative feedback mechanisms. Interestingly, in differentiating cell cultures activation of canonical Wnt signaling reduced Hes1 and Hes5 expression suggesting that during postnatal neural development, Wnt/{beta}-catenin signaling enhances neurogenesis from progenitor cells by interfering with Notch pathway activity.

  14. Myelination in vitro of rodent dorsal root ganglia by glial progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Zajicek, J; Compston, A

    1994-12-01

    Oligodendrocytes synthesize myelin in the mammalian central nervous system; they develop from glial progenitors which, at least in vitro, are bipotential and also differentiate into astrocytes. Maturation of these O-2A progenitors is known to be influenced by growth factors and by extracellular matrix molecules. We investigated the effect of neurons on glial development by co-culturing highly purified rodent embryonic dorsal root ganglia with neonatal O-2A progenitors. Neurons produce signals, including platelet-derived growth factor BB and basic fibroblast growth factor, which stimulate progenitor cells to synthesize DNA; axonal contact is associated with down-regulation in the expression of complex ganglioside surface molecules on O-2A progenitors; with maturation, many of these cells develop into oligodendrocytes allowing the normal process of myelination to take place, but neurons also promote the differentiation of type 2 astrocytes. This orchestration of proliferation and differentiation in O-2A progenitor cells favours the development of glial-neuronal interactions needed for saltatory conduction of the nerve impulse. PMID:7820570

  15. The progenitors of stripped-envelope supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elias-Rosa, N.

    2013-05-01

    The type Ib/c SNe are those explosions which come from massive star populations, but lack hydrogen and helium. These have been proposed to originate in the explosions of massive Wolf-Rayet stars, and we should easily be able to detect the very luminous, young progenitors if they exist. However, there has not been any detection of progenitors so far. I present the study of two extinguished Type Ic SNe 2003jg and 2004cc. In both cases there is no clear evidence of a direct detection of their progenitors in deep pre-explosion images. Upper limits derived by inserting artificial stars of known brightness at random positions around the progenitor positions (M_v>-8.8 and M_v>-9 magnitudes for the progenitors of SN 2003jg and SN 2004cc, respectively) are brighter than those expected for a massive WC (Wolf-Rayet, carbon-rich) or WO (Wolf-Rayet, oxygen-rich) (e.g., approximately between -3 and -6 in the LMC). Therefore, this is perhaps further evidence that the most massive stars may give rise to black-holes forming SNe, or it is an undetected, compact massive star hidden by a thick dust lane. However the extinction toward these SNe is currently one of the largest known. Even if these results do not directly reveal the nature of the type Ic SN progenitors, they can help to characterize the dusty environment which surrounded the progenitor of the stripped-envelope CC-SNe.

  16. Influence of bacterial toxins on the GTPase activity of transducin from bovine retinal rod outer segments

    SciTech Connect

    Rybin, V.O.; Gureeva, A.A.

    1986-05-10

    The action of cholera toxin, capable of ADP-ribosylation of the activator N/sub s/ protein, and pertussis toxin, capable of ADP-ribosylation of the inhibitor N/sub i/ protein of the adenylate cyclase complex, on transducin, the GTP-binding protein of the rod outer segments of the retina, was investigated. It was shown that under the action of pertussis and cholera toxins, the GTPase activity of transducin is inhibited. Pertussin toxin inhibits the GTPase of native retinal rod outer segments by 30-40%, while GTPase of homogeneous transducin produces a 70-80% inhibition. The action of toxins on transducin depends on the presence and nature of the guanylic nucleotide with which incubation is performed. On the basis of the data obtained it is suggested that pertussis toxin interacts with pretransducin and with the transducin-GDP complex, while cholera toxin ADP-ribosylates the transducin-GTP complex and does not act on transducin lacking GTP.

  17. Conditional cooperativity in toxin-antitoxin regulation prevents random toxin activation and promotes fast translational recovery.

    PubMed

    Cataudella, Ilaria; Trusina, Ala; Sneppen, Kim; Gerdes, Kenn; Mitarai, Namiko

    2012-08-01

    Many toxin-antitoxin (TA) loci are known to strongly repress their own transcription. This auto-inhibition is often called 'conditional cooperativity' as it relies on cooperative binding of TA complexes to operator DNA that occurs only when toxins are in a proper stoichiometric relationship with antitoxins. There has recently been an explosion of interest in TA systems due to their role in bacterial persistence, however the role of conditional cooperativity is still unclear. We reveal the biological function of conditional cooperativity by constructing a mathematical model of the well studied TA system, relBE of Escherichia coli. We show that the model with the in vivo and in vitro established parameters reproduces experimentally observed response to nutritional stress. We further demonstrate that conditional cooperativity stabilizes the level of antitoxin in rapidly growing cells such that random induction of relBE is minimized. At the same time it enables quick removal of free toxin when the starvation is terminated. PMID:22495927

  18. A Protein-Based Pentavalent Inhibitor of the Cholera Toxin B-Subunit**

    PubMed Central

    Branson, Thomas R; McAllister, Tom E; Garcia-Hartjes, Jaime; Fascione, Martin A; Ross, James F; Warriner, Stuart L; Wennekes, Tom; Zuilhof, Han; Turnbull, W Bruce

    2014-01-01

    Protein toxins produced by bacteria are the cause of many life-threatening diarrheal diseases. Many of these toxins, including cholera toxin (CT), enter the cell by first binding to glycolipids in the cell membrane. Inhibiting these multivalent protein/carbohydrate interactions would prevent the toxin from entering cells and causing diarrhea. Here we demonstrate that the site-specific modification of a protein scaffold, which is perfectly matched in both size and valency to the target toxin, provides a convenient route to an effective multivalent inhibitor. The resulting pentavalent neoglycoprotein displays an inhibition potency (IC50) of 104 pm for the CT B-subunit (CTB), which is the most potent pentavalent inhibitor for this target reported thus far. Complexation of the inhibitor and CTB resulted in a protein heterodimer. This inhibition strategy can potentially be applied to many multivalent receptors and also opens up new possibilities for protein assembly strategies. PMID:24989497

  19. Progenitor's Signatures in Type Ia Supernova Remnants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiotellis, A.; Kosenko, D.; Schure, K. M.; Vink, J.

    2013-01-01

    The remnants of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) can provide important clues about their progenitor histories. We discuss two well-observed supernova remnants (SNRs) that are believed to have resulted from SNe Ia, and use various tools to shed light on the possible progenitor histories. We find that Kepler's SNR is consistent with a symbiotic binary progenitor consisting of a white dwarf and an AGB star. Our hydrosimulations can reproduce the observed kinematic and morphological properties. For Tycho's remnant we use the characteristics of the X-ray spectrum and kinematics to show that the ejecta has likely interacted with dense circumstellar gas.

  20. Sodium Channel Inhibiting Marine Toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Llewellyn, Lyndon E.

    Saxitoxin (STX), tetrodotoxin (TTX) and their many chemical relatives are part of our daily lives. From killing people who eat seafood containing these toxins, to being valuable research tools unveiling the invisible structures of their pharmacological receptor, their global impact is beyond measure. The pharmacological receptor for these toxins is the voltage-gated sodium channel which transports Na ions between the exterior to the interior of cells. The two structurally divergent families of STX and TTX analogues bind at the same location on these Na channels to stop the flow of ions. This can affect nerves, muscles and biological senses of most animals. It is through these and other toxins that we have developed much of our fundamental understanding of the Na channel and its part in generating action potentials in excitable cells.

  1. Toxin yet not toxic: Botulinum toxin in dentistry.

    PubMed

    Archana, M S

    2016-04-01

    Paracelsus contrasted poisons from nonpoisons, stating that "All things are poisons, and there is nothing that is harmless; the dose alone decides that something is a poison". Living organisms, such as plants, animals, and microorganisms, constitute a huge source of pharmaceutically useful medicines and toxins. Depending on their source, toxins can be categorized as phytotoxins, mycotoxins, or zootoxins, which include venoms and bacterial toxins. Any toxin can be harmful or beneficial. Within the last 100 years, the perception of botulinum neurotoxin (BTX) has evolved from that of a poison to a versatile clinical agent with various uses. BTX plays a key role in the management of many orofacial and dental disorders. Its indications are rapidly expanding, with ongoing trials for further applications. However, despite its clinical use, what BTX specifically does in each condition is still not clear. The main aim of this review is to describe some of the unclear aspects of this potentially useful agent, with a focus on the current research in dentistry. PMID:27486290

  2. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom toxins: tools for biological purposes.

    PubMed

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Chaves-Moreira, Daniele; Wille, Ana Carolina M; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; da Silveira, Rafael Bertoni; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Gremski, Waldemiro; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2011-03-01

    Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5-40 kDa). Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters), and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins. PMID:22069711

  3. Brown Spider (Loxosceles genus) Venom Toxins: Tools for Biological Purposes

    PubMed Central

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Chaves-Moreira, Daniele; Wille, Ana Carolina M.; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; da Silveira, Rafael Bertoni; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Gremski, Waldemiro; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2011-01-01

    Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5–40 kDa). Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters), and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins. PMID:22069711

  4. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R.; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M.; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  5. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms.

    PubMed

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  6. A General Model for Toxin-Antitoxin Module Dynamics Can Explain Persister Cell Formation in E. coli

    PubMed Central

    Gelens, Lendert; Hill, Lydia; Vandervelde, Alexandra; Danckaert, Jan; Loris, Remy

    2013-01-01

    Toxin-Antitoxin modules are small operons involved in stress response and persister cell formation that encode a “toxin” and its corresponding neutralizing “antitoxin”. Regulation of these modules involves a complex mechanism known as conditional cooperativity, which is supposed to prevent unwanted toxin activation. Here we develop mathematical models for their regulation, based on published molecular and structural data, and parameterized using experimental data for F-plasmid ccdAB, bacteriophage P1 phd/doc and E. coli relBE. We show that the level of free toxin in the cell is mainly controlled through toxin sequestration in toxin-antitoxin complexes of various stoichiometry rather than by gene regulation. If the toxin translation rate exceeds twice the antitoxin translation rate, toxins accumulate in all cells. Conditional cooperativity and increasing the number of binding sites on the operator serves to reduce the metabolic burden of the cell by reducing the total amounts of proteins produced. Combining conditional cooperativity and bridging of antitoxins by toxins when bound to their operator sites allows creation of persister cells through rare, extreme stochastic spikes in the free toxin level. The amplitude of these spikes determines the duration of the persister state. Finally, increases in the antitoxin degradation rate and decreases in the bacterial growth rate cause a rise in the amount of persisters during nutritional stress. PMID:24009490

  7. Endothelial progenitor cells: identity defined?

    PubMed Central

    Timmermans, Frank; Plum, Jean; Yöder, Mervin C; Ingram, David A; Vandekerckhove, Bart; Case, Jamie

    2009-01-01

    Abstract In the past decade, researchers have gained important insights on the role of bone marrow (BM)-derived cells in adult neovascularization. A subset of BM-derived cells, called endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), has been of particular interest, as these cells were suggested to home to sites of neovascularization and neoendothelialization and differentiate into endothelial cells (ECs) in situ, a process referred to as postnatal vasculogenesis. Therefore, EPCs were proposed as a potential regenerative tool for treating human vascular disease and a possible target to restrict vessel growth in tumour pathology. However, conflicting results have been reported in the field, and the identification, characterization, and exact role of EPCs in vascular biology is still a subject of much discussion. The focus of this review is on the controversial issues in the field of EPCs which are related to the lack of a unique EPC marker, identification challenges related to the paucity of EPCs in the circulation, and the important phenotypical and functional overlap between EPCs, haematopoietic cells and mature ECs. We also discuss our recent findings on the origin of endothelial outgrowth cells (EOCs), showing that this in vitro defined EC population does not originate from circulating CD133+ cells or CD45+ haematopoietic cells. PMID:19067770

  8. A Bispecific Antibody Promotes Aggregation of Ricin Toxin on Cell Surfaces and Alters Dynamics of Toxin Internalization and Trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Herrera, Cristina; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten

    2016-01-01

    JJX12 is an engineered bispecific antibody against ricin, a member of the medically important A-B family of toxins that exploits retrograde transport as means to gain entry into the cytosol of target cells. JJX12 consists of RTA-D10, a camelid single variable domain (VHH) antibody directed against an epitope on ricin’s enzymatic subunit (RTA), linked via a 15-mer peptide to RTB-B7, a VHH against ricin’s bivalent galactose binding subunit (RTB). We previously reported that JJX12, but not an equimolar mixture of RTA-D10 and RTB-B7 monomers, was able to passively protect mice against a lethal dose ricin challenge, demonstrating that physically linking RTB-B7 and RTA-D10 is critical for toxin-neutralizing activity in vivo. We also reported that JJX12 promotes aggregation of ricin in solution, presumably through the formation of intermolecular crosslinking. In the current study, we now present evidence that JJX12 affects the dynamics of ricin uptake and trafficking in human epithelial cells. Confocal microscopy, as well as live cell imaging coupled with endocytosis pathway-specific inhibitors, revealed that JJX12-toxin complexes are formed on the surfaces of mammalian cells and internalized via a pathway sensitive to amiloride, a known inhibitor of macropinocytosis. Moreover, in the presence of JJX12, retrograde transport of ricin to the trans-Golgi network was significantly reduced, while accumulation of the toxin in late endosomes was significantly enhanced. In summary, we propose that JJX12, by virtue of its ability to crosslink ricin toxin, alters the route of toxin uptake and trafficking within cells. PMID:27300140

  9. A Bispecific Antibody Promotes Aggregation of Ricin Toxin on Cell Surfaces and Alters Dynamics of Toxin Internalization and Trafficking.

    PubMed

    Herrera, Cristina; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2016-01-01

    JJX12 is an engineered bispecific antibody against ricin, a member of the medically important A-B family of toxins that exploits retrograde transport as means to gain entry into the cytosol of target cells. JJX12 consists of RTA-D10, a camelid single variable domain (VHH) antibody directed against an epitope on ricin's enzymatic subunit (RTA), linked via a 15-mer peptide to RTB-B7, a VHH against ricin's bivalent galactose binding subunit (RTB). We previously reported that JJX12, but not an equimolar mixture of RTA-D10 and RTB-B7 monomers, was able to passively protect mice against a lethal dose ricin challenge, demonstrating that physically linking RTB-B7 and RTA-D10 is critical for toxin-neutralizing activity in vivo. We also reported that JJX12 promotes aggregation of ricin in solution, presumably through the formation of intermolecular crosslinking. In the current study, we now present evidence that JJX12 affects the dynamics of ricin uptake and trafficking in human epithelial cells. Confocal microscopy, as well as live cell imaging coupled with endocytosis pathway-specific inhibitors, revealed that JJX12-toxin complexes are formed on the surfaces of mammalian cells and internalized via a pathway sensitive to amiloride, a known inhibitor of macropinocytosis. Moreover, in the presence of JJX12, retrograde transport of ricin to the trans-Golgi network was significantly reduced, while accumulation of the toxin in late endosomes was significantly enhanced. In summary, we propose that JJX12, by virtue of its ability to crosslink ricin toxin, alters the route of toxin uptake and trafficking within cells. PMID:27300140

  10. MCEARD - CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Waterborne cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and the ecosystem....

  11. Temporal Expression of Pertussis Toxin and Ptl Secretion Proteins by Bordetella pertussis

    PubMed Central

    Rambow-Larsen, Amy A.; Weiss, Alison A.

    2004-01-01

    Pertussis toxin is an AB5 toxin comprised of protein subunits S1 through S5. The individual subunits are secreted by a Sec-dependent mechanism into the periplasm, where the toxin is assembled. The Ptl type IV secretion system mediates secretion of assembled toxin past the outer membrane. In this study, we examined the time course of protein expression, toxin assembly, and secretion as a function of the bacterial growth cycle. Logarithmic growth was observed after a 1-h lag phase. Secreted toxin was first observed at 3 h. Secretion continued throughout the logarithmic growth phase and decreased as the culture entered the stationary phase after about 24 h. On a per cell basis, toxin secretion occurred at a constant rate of 3 molecules/min/cell from 2 to 18 h. More of toxin subunits S1, S2, and S3 were produced than were secreted, resulting in periplasmic accumulation. Periplasmic S1, S2, and S3 were found to be soluble in the periplasm, as well as membrane associated. About one-half of the periplasmic S1, S2 and S3 subunits were incorporated into holotoxin. Secretion component PtlF was present at a low level at time zero, and the level increased between 2 and 24 h from 30 to 1,000 molecules per cell; however, the initial level of PtlF, 30 molecules per cell, supported maximal secretion. The accumulation of both periplasmic toxin and secretion components suggests that translation rates exceed the rate of secretion and that secretion, not toxin and Ptl complex assembly, is rate limiting. PMID:14679223

  12. Toxins as Weapons: A Historical Review.

    PubMed

    Pita, R; Romero, A

    2014-07-01

    This review article summarizes the use of toxins as weapons dating from the First World War until today, when there is a high concern of possible terrorist attacks with weapons of mass destruction. All through modern history, military programs and terrorist groups have favored toxins because of their high toxicity. However, difficulties of extraction or synthesis, as well as effective dissemination to cause a large number of casualties, have been the most important drawbacks. Special emphasis is focused on ricin and botulinum toxin, the most important toxins that have attracted the attention of military programs and terrorist groups. Other toxins like trichothecenes, saxitoxin, and Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB) are also discussed. A short section about anthrax is also included: Although Bacillus anthracis is considered a biological weapon rather than a toxin weapon, it produces a toxin that is finally responsible for the anthrax disease. PMID:26227025

  13. Nephrotoxic mechanisms of drugs and environmental toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Porter, G.A.

    1982-01-01

    This book contains 39 contributions divided into five sections each with its own editor and introductory chapter. The first section of nine chapters is concerned with the pathophysiology of acute renal failure. The second section is concerned with the growing problem of renal failure due to the use of antimicrobial agents such as the aminoglycosides. The various causes of tubulointerstitial nephropathy, notably analgesic drugs and environmental toxins such as mycotoxins and lead, are covered in the third section. Environmental and industrial nephrotoxins, such as cadmium, and halogenated aliphatic hydrocarbons, such as chloroform, are the subject of the fourth section. The last section of nine chapters is concerned mainly with a relatively new area of research into immunological mechanisms of nephrotoxicity and the evidence that drugs and other environmental chemicals can serve as antigens for immune complex formation.

  14. Botulinum toxin drugs: brief history and outlook.

    PubMed

    Dressler, D

    2016-03-01

    The global botulinum toxin (BT) market is currently undergoing rapid changes: this may be the time to review the history and the future of BT drug development. Since the early 1990s Botox(®) and Dysport(®) dominated the international BT market. Later, Myobloc(®)/NeuroBloc(®), a liquid BT type B drug, came out, but failed. Xeomin(®) is the latest major BT drug. It features removal of complexing proteins and improved neurotoxin purity. Several new BT drugs are coming out of Korea, China and Russia. Scientific challenges for BT drug development include modification of BT's duration of action, its transdermal transport and the design of BT hybrid drugs for specific target tissues. The increased competition will change the global BT market fundamentally and a re-organisation according to large indication groups, such as therapeutic and cosmetic applications, might occur. PMID:26559824

  15. Neural Progenitors Adopt Specific Identities by Directly Repressing All Alternative Progenitor Transcriptional Programs

    PubMed Central

    Kutejova, Eva; Sasai, Noriaki; Shah, Ankita; Gouti, Mina; Briscoe, James

    2016-01-01

    Summary In the vertebrate neural tube, a morphogen-induced transcriptional network produces multiple molecularly distinct progenitor domains, each generating different neuronal subtypes. Using an in vitro differentiation system, we defined gene expression signatures of distinct progenitor populations and identified direct gene-regulatory inputs corresponding to locations of specific transcription factor binding. Combined with targeted perturbations of the network, this revealed a mechanism in which a progenitor identity is installed by active repression of the entire transcriptional programs of other neural progenitor fates. In the ventral neural tube, sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling, together with broadly expressed transcriptional activators, concurrently activates the gene expression programs of several domains. The specific outcome is selected by repressive input provided by Shh-induced transcription factors that act as the key nodes in the network, enabling progenitors to adopt a single definitive identity from several initially permitted options. Together, the data suggest design principles relevant to many developing tissues. PMID:26972603

  16. Neural Progenitors Adopt Specific Identities by Directly Repressing All Alternative Progenitor Transcriptional Programs.

    PubMed

    Kutejova, Eva; Sasai, Noriaki; Shah, Ankita; Gouti, Mina; Briscoe, James

    2016-03-21

    In the vertebrate neural tube, a morphogen-induced transcriptional network produces multiple molecularly distinct progenitor domains, each generating different neuronal subtypes. Using an in vitro differentiation system, we defined gene expression signatures of distinct progenitor populations and identified direct gene-regulatory inputs corresponding to locations of specific transcription factor binding. Combined with targeted perturbations of the network, this revealed a mechanism in which a progenitor identity is installed by active repression of the entire transcriptional programs of other neural progenitor fates. In the ventral neural tube, sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling, together with broadly expressed transcriptional activators, concurrently activates the gene expression programs of several domains. The specific outcome is selected by repressive input provided by Shh-induced transcription factors that act as the key nodes in the network, enabling progenitors to adopt a single definitive identity from several initially permitted options. Together, the data suggest design principles relevant to many developing tissues. PMID:26972603

  17. Nemertean toxin genes revealed through transcriptome sequencing.

    PubMed

    Whelan, Nathan V; Kocot, Kevin M; Santos, Scott R; Halanych, Kenneth M

    2014-12-01

    Nemerteans are one of few animal groups that have evolved the ability to utilize toxins for both defense and subduing prey, but little is known about specific nemertean toxins. In particular, no study has identified specific toxin genes even though peptide toxins are known from some nemertean species. Information about toxin genes is needed to better understand evolution of toxins across animals and possibly provide novel targets for pharmaceutical and industrial applications. We sequenced and annotated transcriptomes of two free-living and one commensal nemertean and annotated an additional six publicly available nemertean transcriptomes to identify putative toxin genes. Approximately 63-74% of predicted open reading frames in each transcriptome were annotated with gene names, and all species had similar percentages of transcripts annotated with each higher-level GO term. Every nemertean analyzed possessed genes with high sequence similarities to known animal toxins including those from stonefish, cephalopods, and sea anemones. One toxin-like gene found in all nemerteans analyzed had high sequence similarity to Plancitoxin-1, a DNase II hepatotoxin that may function well at low pH, which suggests that the acidic body walls of some nemerteans could work to enhance the efficacy of protein toxins. The highest number of toxin-like genes found in any one species was seven and the lowest was three. The diversity of toxin-like nemertean genes found here is greater than previously documented, and these animals are likely an ideal system for exploring toxin evolution and industrial applications of toxins. PMID:25432940

  18. Nemertean Toxin Genes Revealed through Transcriptome Sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Whelan, Nathan V.; Kocot, Kevin M.; Santos, Scott R.; Halanych, Kenneth M.

    2014-01-01

    Nemerteans are one of few animal groups that have evolved the ability to utilize toxins for both defense and subduing prey, but little is known about specific nemertean toxins. In particular, no study has identified specific toxin genes even though peptide toxins are known from some nemertean species. Information about toxin genes is needed to better understand evolution of toxins across animals and possibly provide novel targets for pharmaceutical and industrial applications. We sequenced and annotated transcriptomes of two free-living and one commensal nemertean and annotated an additional six publicly available nemertean transcriptomes to identify putative toxin genes. Approximately 63–74% of predicted open reading frames in each transcriptome were annotated with gene names, and all species had similar percentages of transcripts annotated with each higher-level GO term. Every nemertean analyzed possessed genes with high sequence similarities to known animal toxins including those from stonefish, cephalopods, and sea anemones. One toxin-like gene found in all nemerteans analyzed had high sequence similarity to Plancitoxin-1, a DNase II hepatotoxin that may function well at low pH, which suggests that the acidic body walls of some nemerteans could work to enhance the efficacy of protein toxins. The highest number of toxin-like genes found in any one species was seven and the lowest was three. The diversity of toxin-like nemertean genes found here is greater than previously documented, and these animals are likely an ideal system for exploring toxin evolution and industrial applications of toxins. PMID:25432940

  19. Tissue-resident mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells in skeletal muscle: collaborators or saboteurs?

    PubMed Central

    Judson, Robert N.; Zhang, Regan-Heng; Rossi, Fabio M. A.

    2016-01-01

    Although the regenerative potential of adult skeletal muscle is maintained by satellite cells, other stem/progenitor cell populations also reside in skeletal muscle. These heterogeneous cellular pools with mesenchymal lineage potentially play important roles in tissue homeostasis, with reciprocal collaborations between these cells and satellite cells appearing critical for effective regeneration. However, in disease settings, these mesenchymal stem/progenitors adopt a more sinister role – likely providing a major source of fibrosis, fatty tissue and extracellular matrix protein deposition in dystrophic tissue. Development of therapies for muscle degeneration therefore requires complete understanding of the multiple cell types involved and their complex interactions. PMID:23763717

  20. Sonic hedgehog lineage in the mouse hypothalamus: from progenitor domains to hypothalamic regions

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The hypothalamus is a brain region with essential functions for homeostasis and energy metabolism, and alterations of its development can contribute to pathological conditions in the adult, like hypertension, diabetes or obesity. However, due to the anatomical complexity of the hypothalamus, its development is not well understood. Sonic hedgehog (Shh) is a key developmental regulator gene expressed in a dynamic pattern in hypothalamic progenitor cells. To obtain insight into hypothalamic organization, we used genetic inducible fate mapping (GIFM) to map the lineages derived from Shh-expressing progenitor domains onto the four rostrocaudally arranged hypothalamic regions: preoptic, anterior, tuberal and mammillary. Results Shh-expressing progenitors labeled at an early stage (before embryonic day (E)9.5) contribute neurons and astrocytes to a large caudal area including the mammillary and posterior tuberal regions as well as tanycytes (specialized median eminence glia). Progenitors labeled at later stages (after E9.5) give rise to neurons and astrocytes of the entire tuberal region and in particular the ventromedial nucleus, but not to cells in the mammillary region and median eminence. At this stage, an additional Shh-expressing domain appears in the preoptic area and contributes mostly astrocytes to the hypothalamus. Shh-expressing progenitors do not contribute to the anterior region at any stage. Finally, we show a gradual shift from neurogenesis to gliogenesis, so that progenitors expressing Shh after E12.5 generate almost exclusively hypothalamic astrocytes. Conclusions We define a fate map of the hypothalamus, based on the dynamic expression of Shh in the hypothalamic progenitor zones. We provide evidence that the large neurogenic Shh-expressing progenitor domains of the ventral diencephalon are continuous with those of the midbrain. We demonstrate that the four classical transverse zones of the hypothalamus have clearly defined progenitor domains

  1. Emerging Roles of Toxin-Antitoxin Modules in Bacterial Pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kędzierska, Barbara; Hayes, Finbarr

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) cassettes are encoded widely by bacteria. The modules typically comprise a protein toxin and protein or RNA antitoxin that sequesters the toxin factor. Toxin activation in response to environmental cues or other stresses promotes a dampening of metabolism, most notably protein translation, which permits survival until conditions improve. Emerging evidence also implicates TAs in bacterial pathogenicity. Bacterial persistence involves entry into a transient semi-dormant state in which cells survive unfavorable conditions including killing by antibiotics, which is a significant clinical problem. TA complexes play a fundamental role in inducing persistence by downregulating cellular metabolism. Bacterial biofilms are important in numerous chronic inflammatory and infectious diseases and cause serious therapeutic problems due to their multidrug tolerance and resistance to host immune system actions. Multiple TAs influence biofilm formation through a network of interactions with other factors that mediate biofilm production and maintenance. Moreover, in view of their emerging contributions to bacterial virulence, TAs are potential targets for novel prophylactic and therapeutic approaches that are required urgently in an era of expanding antibiotic resistance. This review summarizes the emerging evidence that implicates TAs in the virulence profiles of a diverse range of key bacterial pathogens that trigger serious human disease. PMID:27322231

  2. Chemodiversity of cereulide, the emetic toxin of Bacillus cereus.

    PubMed

    Marxen, Sandra; Stark, Timo D; Frenzel, Elrike; Rütschle, Andrea; Lücking, Genia; Pürstinger, Gabriel; Pohl, Elena E; Scherer, Siegfried; Ehling-Schulz, Monika; Hofmann, Thomas

    2015-03-01

    Food-borne intoxications are increasingly caused by the dodecadepsipeptide cereulide, the emetic toxin produced by Bacillus cereus. As such intoxications pose a health risk to humans, a more detailed understanding on the chemodiversity of this toxin is mandatory for the reliable risk assessment of B. cereus toxins in foods. Mass spectrometric screening now shows a series of at least 18 cereulide variants, among which the previously unknown isocereulides A-G were determined for the first time by means of UPLC-TOF MS and ion-trap MS(n) sequencing, (13)C-labeling experiments, and post-hydrolytic dipeptide and enantioselective amino acid analysis. The data demonstrate a high microheterogeneity in cereulide and show evidence for a relaxed proof reading function of the non-ribosomal cereulide peptide synthetase complex giving rise to an enhanced cereulide chemodiversity. Most intriguingly, the isocereulides were found to differ widely in their cell toxicity correlating with their ionophoric properties (e.g., purified isocereulide A showed about 8-fold higher cytotoxicity than purified cereulide in the HEp-2 assay and induced an immediate breakdown of bilayer membranes). These findings provide a substantial contribution to the knowledge-based risk assessment of B. cereus toxins in foods, representing a still unsolved challenge in the field of food intoxications. PMID:25665710

  3. STELLAR BINARY COMPANIONS TO SUPERNOVA PROGENITORS

    SciTech Connect

    Kochanek, Christopher S.

    2009-12-20

    For typical models of binary statistics, 50%-80% of core-collapse supernova (ccSN) progenitors are members of a stellar binary at the time of the explosion. Independent of any consequences of mass transfer, this has observational consequences that can be used to study the binary properties of massive stars. In particular, the secondary companion to the progenitor of a Type Ib/c SN is frequently (approx50%) the more optically luminous star since the high effective temperatures of the stripped progenitors make it relatively easy for a lower luminosity, cooler secondary to emit more optical light. Secondaries to the lower mass progenitors of Type II SN will frequently produce excess blue emission relative to the spectral energy distribution of the red primary. Available data constrain the models weakly. Any detected secondaries also provide an independent lower bound on the progenitor mass and, for historical SN, show that it was not a Type Ia event. Bright ccSN secondaries have an unambiguous, post-explosion observational signature-strong, blueshifted, relatively broad absorption lines created by the developing SN remnant (SNR). These can be used to locate historical SN with bright secondaries, confirm that a source is a secondary, and, potentially, measure abundances of ccSN ejecta. Luminous, hot secondaries will re-ionize the SNR on timescales of 100-1000 yr that are faster than re-ionization by the reverse shock, creating peculiar H II regions due to the high metallicity and velocities of the ejecta.

  4. PTF 11kx: a type Ia supernova with a symbiotic nova progenitor.

    PubMed

    Dilday, B; Howell, D A; Cenko, S B; Silverman, J M; Nugent, P E; Sullivan, M; Ben-Ami, S; Bildsten, L; Bolte, M; Endl, M; Filippenko, A V; Gnat, O; Horesh, A; Hsiao, E; Kasliwal, M M; Kirkman, D; Maguire, K; Marcy, G W; Moore, K; Pan, Y; Parrent, J T; Podsiadlowski, P; Quimby, R M; Sternberg, A; Suzuki, N; Tytler, D R; Xu, D; Bloom, J S; Gal-Yam, A; Hook, I M; Kulkarni, S R; Law, N M; Ofek, E O; Polishook, D; Poznanski, D

    2012-08-24

    There is a consensus that type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) arise from the thermonuclear explosion of white dwarf stars that accrete matter from a binary companion. However, direct observation of SN Ia progenitors is lacking, and the precise nature of the binary companion remains uncertain. A temporal series of high-resolution optical spectra of the SN Ia PTF 11kx reveals a complex circumstellar environment that provides an unprecedentedly detailed view of the progenitor system. Multiple shells of circumstellar material are detected, and the SN ejecta are seen to interact with circumstellar material starting 59 days after the explosion. These features are best described by a symbiotic nova progenitor, similar to RS Ophiuchi. PMID:22923575

  5. Endothelin-1 supports clonal derivation and expansion of cardiovascular progenitors derived from human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Soh, Boon-Seng; Ng, Shi-Yan; Wu, Hao; Buac, Kristina; Park, Joo-Hye C; Lian, Xiaojun; Xu, Jiejia; Foo, Kylie S; Felldin, Ulrika; He, Xiaobing; Nichane, Massimo; Yang, Henry; Bu, Lei; Li, Ronald A; Lim, Bing; Chien, Kenneth R

    2016-01-01

    Coronary arteriogenesis is a central step in cardiogenesis, requiring coordinated generation and integration of endothelial cell and vascular smooth muscle cells. At present, it is unclear whether the cell fate programme of cardiac progenitors to generate complex muscular or vascular structures is entirely cell autonomous. Here we demonstrate the intrinsic ability of vascular progenitors to develop and self-organize into cardiac tissues by clonally isolating and expanding second heart field cardiovascular progenitors using WNT3A and endothelin-1 (EDN1) human recombinant proteins. Progenitor clones undergo long-term expansion and differentiate primarily into endothelial and smooth muscle cell lineages in vitro, and contribute extensively to coronary-like vessels in vivo, forming a functional human-mouse chimeric circulatory system. Our study identifies EDN1 as a key factor towards the generation and clonal derivation of ISL1(+) vascular intermediates, and demonstrates the intrinsic cell-autonomous nature of these progenitors to differentiate and self-organize into functional vasculatures in vivo. PMID:26952167

  6. Endothelin-1 supports clonal derivation and expansion of cardiovascular progenitors derived from human embryonic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Soh, Boon-Seng; Ng, Shi-Yan; Wu, Hao; Buac, Kristina; Park, Joo-Hye C.; Lian, Xiaojun; Xu, Jiejia; Foo, Kylie S.; Felldin, Ulrika; He, Xiaobing; Nichane, Massimo; Yang, Henry; Bu, Lei; Li, Ronald A.; Lim, Bing; Chien, Kenneth R.

    2016-01-01

    Coronary arteriogenesis is a central step in cardiogenesis, requiring coordinated generation and integration of endothelial cell and vascular smooth muscle cells. At present, it is unclear whether the cell fate programme of cardiac progenitors to generate complex muscular or vascular structures is entirely cell autonomous. Here we demonstrate the intrinsic ability of vascular progenitors to develop and self-organize into cardiac tissues by clonally isolating and expanding second heart field cardiovascular progenitors using WNT3A and endothelin-1 (EDN1) human recombinant proteins. Progenitor clones undergo long-term expansion and differentiate primarily into endothelial and smooth muscle cell lineages in vitro, and contribute extensively to coronary-like vessels in vivo, forming a functional human–mouse chimeric circulatory system. Our study identifies EDN1 as a key factor towards the generation and clonal derivation of ISL1+ vascular intermediates, and demonstrates the intrinsic cell-autonomous nature of these progenitors to differentiate and self-organize into functional vasculatures in vivo. PMID:26952167

  7. Why do we study animal toxins?

    PubMed Central

    ZHANG, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Venom (toxins) is an important trait evolved along the evolutionary tree of animals. Our knowledges on venoms, such as their origins and loss, the biological relevance and the coevolutionary patterns with other organisms are greatly helpful in understanding many fundamental biological questions, i.e., the environmental adaptation and survival competition, the evolution shaped development and balance of venoms, and the sophisticated correlations among venom, immunity, body power, intelligence, their genetic basis, inherent association, as well as the cost-benefit and trade-offs of biological economy. Lethal animal envenomation can be found worldwide. However, from foe to friend, toxin studies have led lots of important discoveries and exciting avenues in deciphering and fighting human diseases, including the works awarded the Nobel Prize and lots of key clinic therapeutics. According to our survey, so far, only less than 0.1% of the toxins of the venomous animals in China have been explored. We emphasize on the similarities shared by venom and immune systems, as well as the studies of toxin knowledge-based physiological toxin-like proteins/peptides (TLPs). We propose the natural pairing hypothesis. Evolution links toxins with humans. Our mission is to find out the right natural pairings and interactions of our body elements with toxins, and with endogenous toxin-like molecules. Although, in nature, toxins may endanger human lives, but from a philosophical point of view, knowing them well is an effective way to better understand ourselves. So, this is why we study toxins. PMID:26228472

  8. Why do we study animal toxins?

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yun

    2015-07-18

    Venom (toxins) is an important trait evolved along the evolutionary tree of animals. Our knowledges on venoms, such as their origins and loss, the biological relevance and the coevolutionary patterns with other organisms are greatly helpful in understanding many fundamental biological questions, i.e., the environmental adaptation and survival competition, the evolution shaped development and balance of venoms, and the sophisticated correlations among venom, immunity, body power, intelligence, their genetic basis, inherent association, as well as the cost-benefit and trade-offs of biological economy. Lethal animal envenomation can be found worldwide. However, from foe to friend, toxin studies have led lots of important discoveries and exciting avenues in deciphering and fighting human diseases, including the works awarded the Nobel Prize and lots of key clinic therapeutics. According to our survey, so far, only less than 0.1% of the toxins of the venomous animals in China have been explored. We emphasize on the similarities shared by venom and immune systems, as well as the studies of toxin knowledge-based physiological toxin-like proteins/peptides (TLPs). We propose the natural pairing hypothesis. Evolution links toxins with humans. Our mission is to find out the right natural pairings and interactions of our body elements with toxins, and with endogenous toxin-like molecules. Although, in nature, toxins may endanger human lives, but from a philosophical point of view, knowing them well is an effective way to better understand ourselves. So, this is why we study toxins. PMID:26228472

  9. Clostridium difficile toxin expression is inhibited by the novel regulator TcdC.

    PubMed

    Matamouros, Susana; England, Patrick; Dupuy, Bruno

    2007-06-01

    Clostridium difficile, an emerging nosocomial pathogen of increasing clinical significance, produces two large protein toxins that are responsible for the cellular damage associated with the disease. The precise mechanisms by which toxin synthesis is regulated in response to environmental change have yet to be discovered. The toxin genes (tcdA and tcdB) are located in a pathogenicity locus (PaLoc), along with tcdR and tcdC. TcdR is an alternative RNA polymerase sigma factor that directly activates toxin gene expression, while the inverse relationship between expression of tcdR, tcdA and tcdB genes on the one hand and tcdC on the other has led to the suggestion that TcdC somehow interferes with toxin gene expression. This idea is further supported by the finding that many recent C. difficile epidemic strains in which toxin production is increased carry a common tcdC deletion mutation. In this report we demonstrate that TcdC negatively regulates toxin synthesis both in vivo and in vitro. TcdC destabilizes the TcdR-containing holoenzyme before open complex formation, apparently by interaction with TcdR or TcdR-containing RNA polymerase holoenzyme or both. In addition, we show that the hypertoxigenicity phenotype of C. difficile epidemic strains is not due to their common 18 bp in-frame deletion in tcdC. PMID:17542920

  10. Toxin-induced conformational changes in a potassium channel revealed by solid-state NMR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lange, Adam; Giller, Karin; Hornig, Sönke; Martin-Eauclaire, Marie-France; Pongs, Olaf; Becker, Stefan; Baldus, Marc

    2006-04-01

    The active site of potassium (K+) channels catalyses the transport of K+ ions across the plasma membrane-similar to the catalytic function of the active site of an enzyme-and is inhibited by toxins from scorpion venom. On the basis of the conserved structures of K+ pore regions and scorpion toxins, detailed structures for the K+ channel-scorpion toxin binding interface have been proposed. In these models and in previous solution-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) studies using detergent-solubilized membrane proteins, scorpion toxins were docked to the extracellular entrance of the K+ channel pore assuming rigid, preformed binding sites. Using high-resolution solid-state NMR spectroscopy, here we show that high-affinity binding of the scorpion toxin kaliotoxin to a chimaeric K+ channel (KcsA-Kv1.3) is associated with significant structural rearrangements in both molecules. Our approach involves a combined analysis of chemical shifts and proton-proton distances and demonstrates that solid-state NMR is a sensitive method for analysing the structure of a membrane protein-inhibitor complex. We propose that structural flexibility of the K+ channel and the toxin represents an important determinant for the high specificity of toxin-K+ channel interactions.

  11. Iron Specifically Protects Corn Protoplasts from T-Toxin of Cochliobolus heterostrophus1

    PubMed Central

    MacRae, W. Donald; Yoder, O. C.

    1987-01-01

    Ferric ion reduced the damaging effects of T-toxin, a series of linear β-polyketols produced by the pathogenic fungus Cochliobolus heterostrophus, on leaf mesophyll protoplasts from susceptible T-cytoplasm corn. Of nine metals tested, only ferric and ferrous ions had this effect. Despite the presence of 12 available oxygen atoms in each T-toxin molecule, there was no evidence for the formation of an aqueous Fe2+- or Fe3+-T-toxin complex. The protective effect of iron was eliminated by a molar excess of EDTA. Iron had no effect on the sensitivity of T-cytoplasm mitochondria to T-toxin, even at a 1000-fold molar excess, nor did it protect roots of T-cytoplasm corn seedlings from inhibition by T-toxin. The mechanism by which iron specifically protects protoplasts from T-toxin is not understood, but time lapse experiments suggest that iron acts on some intracellular site to modify T-toxin sensitivity and not on a transport system at the cell surface. Images Fig. 1 PMID:16665594

  12. Botulinum Toxin in Pediatric Neurology

    PubMed Central

    Abdallah, Enas Abdallah Ali

    2015-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins are natural molecules produced by anaerobic spore-forming bacteria called Clostradium boltulinum. The toxin has a peculiar mechanism of action by preventing the release of acetylcholine from the presynaptic membrane. Consequently, it has been used in the treatment of various neurological conditions related to muscle hyperactivity and/or spasticity. Also, it has an impact on the autonomic nervous system by acting on smooth muscle, leading to its use in the management of pain syndromes. The use of botulinum toxin in children separate from adults has received very little attention in the literature. This review presents the current data on the use of botulinum neurotoxin to treat various neurological disorders in children. PMID:27335961

  13. The toxin and antidote puzzle

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Insects carry out essential ecological functions, such as pollination, but also cause extensive damage to agricultural crops and transmit human diseases such as malaria and dengue fever. Advances in insect transgenesis are making it increasingly feasible to engineer genes conferring desirable phenotypes, and gene drive systems are required to spread these genes into wild populations. Medea provides one solution, being able to spread into a population from very low initial frequencies through the action of a maternally-expressed toxin linked to a zygotically-expressed antidote. Several other toxin-antidote combinations are imaginable that distort the offspring ratio in favor of a desired transgene, or drive the population towards an all-male crash. We explore two such systems—Semele, which is capable of spreading a desired transgene into an isolated population in a confined manner; and Merea, which is capable of inducing a local population crash when located on the Z chromosome of a Lepidopteron pest. PMID:21876382

  14. Exploring the Progenitors of Fast Radio Bursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; Kramer, Michael; Bhat, Ramesh; Kulkarni, S. R.; Keller, Stefan; Champion, David; Flynn, Chris; Kasliwal, Mansi

    2014-10-01

    Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) are millisecond bursts that are broadly evidenced to arise from extragalactic, but yet unknown, progenitors. They have presented a true mystery in that so far no progenitor theory can adequately account for their observed properties. We request observations that will glean basic information on FRB progenitors. Our observations will execute a specific test of whether FRBs originate in nearby galaxies. We have also designed our target field and time request to enable a thorough exploration of optical counterparts before, during, and after any detected FRB episode. Additionally, with a number depending on the typical distance to FRBs, our observations will raise the running list of total FRB discoveries by 10-60%.

  15. Progenitor cells in the adult pancreas.

    PubMed

    Holland, Andrew M; Góñez, L Jorge; Harrison, Leonard C

    2004-01-01

    The beta-cell mass in the adult pancreas possesses the ability to undergo limited regeneration following injury. Identifying the progenitor cells involved in this process and understanding the mechanisms leading to their maturation will open new avenues for the treatment of type 1 diabetes. However, despite steady advances in determining the molecular basis of early pancreatic development, the identification of pancreatic stem cells or beta-cell progenitors and the molecular mechanisms underlying beta-cell regeneration remain unclear. Recent advances in the directed differentiation of embryonic and adult stem cells has heightened interest in the possible application of stem cell therapy in the treatment of type 1 diabetes. Drawing on the expanding knowledge of pancreas development, beta-cell regeneration and stem cell research, this review focuses on progenitor cells in the adult pancreas as a potential source of beta-cells. PMID:14737742

  16. Derivation of high-purity oligodendroglial progenitors.

    PubMed

    Hatch, Maya N; Nistor, Gabriel; Keirstead, Hans S

    2009-01-01

    Oligodendrocytes are a type of glial cells that play a critical role in supporting the central nervous system (CNS), in particular insulating axons within the CNS by wrapping them with a myelin sheath, thereby enabling saltatory conduction. They are lost, and myelin damaged - demyelination - in a wide variety of neurological disorders. Replacing depleted cell types within demyelinated areas, however, has been shown experimentally to achieve remyelination and so help restore function. One method to produce oligodendrocytes for cellular replacement therapies is through the use of progenitor or stem cells. The ability to differentiate progenitor or stem cells into high-purity fates not only permits the generation of specific cells for transplantation therapies, but also provides powerful tools for studying cellular mechanisms of development. This chapter outlines methods of generating high-purity OPCs from multipotent neonatal progenitor or human embryonic stem cells. PMID:19378196

  17. Novel Class of Spider Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Vassilevski, Alexander A.; Fedorova, Irina M.; Maleeva, Ekaterina E.; Korolkova, Yuliya V.; Efimova, Svetlana S.; Samsonova, Olga V.; Schagina, Ludmila V.; Feofanov, Alexei V.; Magazanik, Lev G.; Grishin, Eugene V.

    2010-01-01

    Venom of the yellow sac spider Cheiracanthium punctorium (Miturgidae) was found unique in terms of molecular composition. Its principal toxic component CpTx 1 (15.1 kDa) was purified, and its full amino acid sequence (134 residues) was established by protein chemistry and mass spectrometry techniques. CpTx 1 represents a novel class of spider toxin with modular architecture. It consists of two different yet homologous domains (modules) each containing a putative inhibitor cystine knot motif, characteristic of the widespread single domain spider neurotoxins. Venom gland cDNA sequencing provided precursor protein (prepropeptide) structures of three CpTx 1 isoforms (a–c) that differ by single residue substitutions. The toxin possesses potent insecticidal (paralytic and lethal), cytotoxic, and membrane-damaging activities. In both fly and frog neuromuscular preparations, it causes stable and irreversible depolarization of muscle fibers leading to contracture. This effect appears to be receptor-independent and is inhibited by high concentrations of divalent cations. CpTx 1 lyses cell membranes, as visualized by confocal microscopy, and destabilizes artificial membranes in a manner reminiscent of other membrane-active peptides by causing numerous defects of variable conductance and leading to bilayer rupture. The newly discovered class of modular polypeptides enhances our knowledge of the toxin universe. PMID:20657014

  18. The nucleotide exchange factors Grp170 and Sil1 induce cholera toxin release from BiP to enable retrotranslocation.

    PubMed

    Williams, Jeffrey M; Inoue, Takamasa; Chen, Grace; Tsai, Billy

    2015-06-15

    Cholera toxin (CT) intoxicates cells by trafficking from the cell surface to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), where the catalytic CTA1 subunit hijacks components of the ER-associated degradation (ERAD) machinery to retrotranslocate to the cytosol and induce toxicity. In the ER, CT targets to the ERAD machinery composed of the E3 ubiquitin ligase Hrd1-Sel1L complex, in part via the activity of the Sel1L-binding partner ERdj5. This J protein stimulates BiP's ATPase activity, allowing BiP to capture the toxin. Presumably, toxin release from BiP must occur before retrotranslocation. Here, using loss-and gain-of-function approaches coupled with binding studies, we demonstrate that the ER-resident nucleotide exchange factors (NEFs) Grp170 and Sil1 induce CT release from BiP in order to promote toxin retrotranslocation. In addition, we find that after NEF-dependent release from BiP, the toxin is transferred to protein disulfide isomerase; this ER redox chaperone is known to unfold CTA1, which allows the toxin to cross the Hrd1-Sel1L complex. Our data thus identify two NEFs that trigger toxin release from BiP to enable successful retrotranslocation and clarify the fate of the toxin after it disengages from BiP. PMID:25877869

  19. Multiplex quantification of protein toxins in human biofluids and food matrices using immunoextraction and high-resolution targeted mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Dupré, Mathieu; Gilquin, Benoit; Fenaille, François; Feraudet-Tarisse, Cécile; Dano, Julie; Ferro, Myriam; Simon, Stéphanie; Junot, Christophe; Brun, Virginie; Becher, François

    2015-08-18

    The development of rapid methods for unambiguous identification and precise quantification of protein toxins in various matrices is essential for public health surveillance. Nowadays, analytical strategies classically rely on sensitive immunological assays, but mass spectrometry constitutes an attractive complementary approach thanks to direct measurement and protein characterization ability. We developed here an innovative multiplex immuno-LC-MS/MS method for the simultaneous and specific quantification of the three potential biological warfare agents, ricin, staphylococcal enterotoxin B, and epsilon toxin, in complex human biofluids and food matrices. At least 7 peptides were targeted for each toxin (43 peptides in total) with a quadrupole-Orbitrap high-resolution instrument for exquisite detection specificity. Quantification was performed using stable isotope-labeled toxin standards spiked early in the sample. Lower limits of quantification were determined at or close to 1 ng·mL(-1). The whole process was successfully applied to the quantitative analysis of toxins in complex samples such as milk, human urine, and plasma. Finally, we report new data on toxin stability with no evidence of toxin degradation in milk in a 48 h time frame, allowing relevant quantitative toxin analysis for samples collected in this time range. PMID:26167627

  20. Neurotoxic cyanobacterial toxins.

    PubMed

    Aráoz, Rómulo; Molgó, Jordi; Tandeau de Marsac, Nicole

    2010-10-01

    Worldwide development of cyanobacterial blooms has significantly increased in marine and continental waters in the last century due to water eutrophication. This phenomenon is favoured by the ability of planktonic cyanobacteria to synthesize gas vesicles that allow them to float in the water column. Besides, benthic cyanobacteria that proliferate at the bottom of lakes, rivers and costal waters form dense mats near the shore. Cyanobacterial massive proliferation is of public concern regarding the capacity of certain cyanobacterial strains to produce hepatotoxic and neurotoxic compounds that can affect public health, human activities and wild and stock animals. The cholinergic synapses and voltage-gated sodium channels constitute the targets of choice of cyanobacterial neurotoxins. Anatoxin-a and homoanatoxin-a are agonists of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Anatoxin-a(s) is an irreversible inhibitor of acetylcholinesterase. Saxitoxin, kalkitoxin and jamaicamide are blockers of voltage-gated sodium channels, whereas antillatoxin is an activator of such channels. Moreover the neurotoxic amino acid l-beta-N-methylamino-l-alanine was shown to be produced by diverse cyanobacterial taxa. Although controversial, increasing in vivo and in vitro evidence suggest a link between the ingestion of l-beta-N-methylamino-l-alanine and the development of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis/Parkinsonism-dementia complex, a neurodegenerative disease. This paper reviews the occurrence of cyanobacterial neurotoxins, their chemical properties, mode of action and biosynthetic pathways. PMID:19660486

  1. Pigment Cell Progenitors in Zebrafish Remain Multipotent through Metamorphosis.

    PubMed

    Singh, Ajeet Pratap; Dinwiddie, April; Mahalwar, Prateek; Schach, Ursula; Linker, Claudia; Irion, Uwe; Nüsslein-Volhard, Christiane

    2016-08-01

    The neural crest is a transient, multipotent embryonic cell population in vertebrates giving rise to diverse cell types in adults via intermediate progenitors. The in vivo cell-fate potential and lineage segregation of these postembryonic progenitors is poorly understood, and it is unknown if and when the progenitors become fate restricted. We investigate the fate restriction in the neural crest-derived stem cells and intermediate progenitors in zebrafish, which give rise to three distinct adult pigment cell types: melanophores, iridophores, and xanthophores. By inducing clones in sox10-expressing cells, we trace and quantitatively compare the pigment cell progenitors at four stages, from embryogenesis to metamorphosis. At all stages, a large fraction of the progenitors are multipotent. These multipotent progenitors have a high proliferation ability, which diminishes with fate restriction. We suggest that multipotency of the nerve-associated progenitors lasting into metamorphosis may have facilitated the evolution of adult-specific traits in vertebrates. PMID:27453500

  2. Phage display and Shiga toxin neutralizers.

    PubMed

    Bernedo-Navarro, Robert Alvin; Yano, Tomomasa

    2016-04-01

    The current work presents an overview of the use of phage display technology for the identification and characterization of potential neutralizing agents for Shiga toxins. The last major Shiga toxin-associated disease outbreak, which took place in Germany in 2011, showed the international community that Shiga toxins remain a serious threat to public health. This is also demonstrated by the lack of specific therapies against Shiga toxin-induced Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS). Since its inception, phage display technology has played a key role in the development of antigen-specific (poly)-peptides or antibody fragments with specific biological properties. Herein, we review the current literature regarding the application of phage display to identify novel neutralizing agents against Shiga toxins. We also briefly highlight reported discoveries of peptides and heavy chain antibodies (VHH fragments or nanobodies) that can neutralize the cellular damage caused by these potent toxins. PMID:26898657

  3. Bt Toxin Modification for Enhanced Efficacy

    PubMed Central

    Deist, Benjamin R.; Rausch, Michael A.; Fernandez-Luna, Maria Teresa; Adang, Michael J.; Bonning, Bryony C.

    2014-01-01

    Insect-specific toxins derived from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) provide a valuable resource for pest suppression. Here we review the different strategies that have been employed to enhance toxicity against specific target species including those that have evolved resistance to Bt, or to modify the host range of Bt crystal (Cry) and cytolytic (Cyt) toxins. These strategies include toxin truncation, modification of protease cleavage sites, domain swapping, site-directed mutagenesis, peptide addition, and phage display screens for mutated toxins with enhanced activity. Toxin optimization provides a useful approach to extend the utility of these proteins for suppression of pests that exhibit low susceptibility to native Bt toxins, and to overcome field resistance. PMID:25340556

  4. Transcriptional cross-activation between toxin-antitoxin systems of Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are formed by potent regulatory or suicide factors (toxins) and their short-lived inhibitors (antitoxins). Antitoxins are DNA-binding proteins and auto-repress transcription of TA operons. Transcription of multiple TA operons is activated in temporarily non-growing persister cells that can resist killing by antibiotics. Consequently, the antitoxin levels of persisters must have been dropped and toxins are released of inhibition. Results Here, we describe transcriptional cross-activation between different TA systems of Escherichia coli. We find that the chromosomal relBEF operon is activated in response to production of the toxins MazF, MqsR, HicA, and HipA. Expression of the RelE toxin in turn induces transcription of several TA operons. We show that induction of mazEF during amino acid starvation depends on relBE and does not occur in a relBEF deletion mutant. Induction of TA operons has been previously shown to depend on Lon protease which is activated by polyphospate accumulation. We show that transcriptional cross-activation occurs also in strains deficient for Lon, ClpP, and HslV proteases and polyphosphate kinase. Furthermore, we find that toxins cleave the TA mRNA in vivo, which is followed by degradation of the antitoxin-encoding fragments and selective accumulation of the toxin-encoding regions. We show that these accumulating fragments can be translated to produce more toxin. Conclusion Transcriptional activation followed by cleavage of the mRNA and disproportionate production of the toxin constitutes a possible positive feedback loop, which can fire other TA systems and cause bistable growth heterogeneity. Cross-interacting TA systems have a potential to form a complex network of mutually activating regulators in bacteria. PMID:23432955

  5. [Use of botulinum toxin in strabismus].

    PubMed

    Wabbels, B

    2016-07-01

    Botulinum toxin can be a useful tool for treating acute sixth nerve palsy and excessive eye deviations due to unstable Graves' disease, when surgery is not yet possible. The diagnostic injection for estimation of possible postoperative double vision also makes sense. In convergence spasms, periocular botulinum toxin injections can be a therapeutic option. Botulinum toxin is not a first line option in infantile esotropia without binocularity or in adult horizontal strabismus. Side effects include ptosis and vertical deviations. PMID:27369733

  6. 2D and 3D Stem Cell Models of Primate Cortical Development Identify Species-Specific Differences in Progenitor Behavior Contributing to Brain Size

    PubMed Central

    Otani, Tomoki; Marchetto, Maria C.; Gage, Fred H.; Simons, Benjamin D.; Livesey, Frederick J.

    2016-01-01

    Summary Variation in cerebral cortex size and complexity is thought to contribute to differences in cognitive ability between humans and other animals. Here we compare cortical progenitor cell output in humans and three nonhuman primates using directed differentiation of pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) in adherent two-dimensional (2D) and organoid three-dimensional (3D) culture systems. Clonal lineage analysis showed that primate cortical progenitors proliferate for a protracted period of time, during which they generate early-born neurons, in contrast to rodents, where this expansion phase largely ceases before neurogenesis begins. The extent of this additional cortical progenitor expansion differs among primates, leading to differences in the number of neurons generated by each progenitor cell. We found that this mechanism for controlling cortical size is regulated cell autonomously in culture, suggesting that primate cerebral cortex size is regulated at least in part at the level of individual cortical progenitor cell clonal output. PMID:27049876

  7. Botulinum toxin for neuropathic pain and spasticity: an overview.

    PubMed

    Brown, E Alexandra; Schütz, Sonja G; Simpson, David M

    2014-03-01

    In recent years, a large body of data has surfaced reporting the therapeutic benefit of botulinum toxin injection in multiple conditions. The aim of this review is: to summarize the highest quality literature pertaining to clinical application of botulinum toxin in neuropathic pain conditions including postherpetic neuralgia, trigeminal neuralgia, diabetic polyneuropathy, post-traumatic neuralgia, carpal tunnel syndrome, complex regional pain syndrome, phantom limb and stump pain, and occipital neuralgia; to provide an overview of the clinical trials using botulinum toxin in adult spasticity; and to assign levels of evidence according to the American Academy of Neurology guidelines. In summary, there is level A evidence for established efficacy in postherpetic neuralgia and adult spasticity; level B evidence for probable efficacy in trigeminal neuralgia and post-traumatic neuralgia; level B evidence for probable lack of efficacy in carpal tunnel syndrome; level C evidence for possible efficacy in diabetic polyneuropathy; and level U (insufficient) evidence in complex regional pain syndrome, phantom limb and stump pain, and occipital neuralgia. PMID:24641437

  8. The progenitors of subluminous type Ia supernovae

    SciTech Connect

    Howell, D. Andrew

    2001-02-01

    We find that spectroscopically peculiar subluminous SNe Ia come from an old population. Of the thirteen subluminous SNe Ia known, nine are found in E/S0 galaxies, and the remainder are found in early-type spirals. The probability that this is a chance occurrence is only 0.1%. The finding that subluminous SNe Ia are associated with an older stellar population indicates that for a sufficiently large lookback time (already accessible in current high redshift searches) they will not be found. Due to a scarcity in old populations, hydrogen and helium main sequence stars and He red giant stars that undergo Roche lobe overflow are unlikely to be the progenitors of subluminous SNe Ia. Earlier findings that overluminous SNe Ia (DELTA m{sub 15} (B) < 0.94) come from a young progenitor population are confirmed. The fact that subluminous SNe Ia and overluminous SNe Ia come from different progenitor populations and also have different properties is a prediction of the CO white dwarf merger progenitor scenario.

  9. Human Liver Progenitor Cells for Liver Repair

    PubMed Central

    Lombard, Catherine A.; Prigent, Julie; Sokal, Etienne M.

    2013-01-01

    Because of their high proliferative capacity, resistance to cryopreservation, and ability to differentiate into hepatocyte-like cells, stem and progenitor cells have recently emerged as attractive cell sources for liver cell therapy, a technique used as an alternative to orthotopic liver transplantation in the treatment of various hepatic ailments ranging from metabolic disorders to end-stage liver disease. Although stem and progenitor cells have been isolated from various tissues, obtaining them from the liver could be an advantage for the treatment of hepatic disorders. However, the techniques available to isolate these stem/progenitor cells are numerous and give rise to cell populations with different morphological and functional characteristics. In addition, there is currently no established consensus on the tests that need to be performed to ensure the quality and safety of these cells when used clinically. The purpose of this review is to describe the different types of liver stem/progenitor cells currently reported in the literature, discuss their suitability and limitations in terms of clinical applications, and examine how the culture and transplantation techniques can potentially be improved to achieve a better clinical outcome. PMID:26858860

  10. In vivo identification of periodontal progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Roguljic, H; Matthews, B G; Yang, W; Cvija, H; Mina, M; Kalajzic, I

    2013-08-01

    The periodontal ligament contains progenitor cells; however, their identity and differentiation potential in vivo remain poorly characterized. Previous results have suggested that periodontal tissue progenitors reside in perivascular areas. Therefore, we utilized a lineage-tracing approach to identify and track periodontal progenitor cells from the perivascular region in vivo. We used an alpha-smooth muscle actin (αSMA) promoter-driven and tamoxifen-inducible Cre system (αSMACreERT2) that, in combination with a reporter mouse line (Ai9), permanently labels a cell population, termed 'SMA9'. To trace the differentiation of SMA9-labeled cells into osteoblasts/cementoblasts, we utilized a Col2.3GFP transgene, while expression of Scleraxis-GFP was used to follow differentiation into periodontal ligament fibroblasts during normal tissue formation and remodeling following injury. In uninjured three-week-old SMA9 mice, tamoxifen labeled a small population of cells in the periodontal ligament that expanded over time, particularly in the apical region of the root. By 17 days and 7 weeks after labeling, some SMA9-labeled cells expressed markers indicating differentiation into mature lineages, including cementocytes. Following injury, SMA9 cells expanded, and differentiated into cementoblasts, osteoblasts, and periodontal ligament fibroblasts. SMA9-labeled cells represent a source of progenitors that can give rise to mature osteoblasts, cementoblasts, and fibroblasts within the periodontium. PMID:23735585

  11. Microtubules CLASP to Adherens Junctions in epidermal progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Shahbazi, Marta N; Perez-Moreno, Mirna

    2014-01-01

    Cadherin-mediated cell adhesion at Adherens Junctions (AJs) and its dynamic connections with the microtubule (MT) cytoskeleton are important regulators of cellular architecture. However, the functional relevance of these interactions and the molecular players involved in different cellular contexts and cellular compartments are still not completely understood. Here, we comment on our recent findings showing that the MT plus-end binding protein CLASP2 interacts with the AJ component p120-catenin (p120) specifically in progenitor epidermal cells. Absence of either protein leads to alterations in MT dynamics and AJ functionality. These findings represent a novel mechanism of MT targeting to AJs that may be relevant for the maintenance of proper epidermal progenitor cell homeostasis. We also discuss the potential implication of other MT binding proteins previously associated to AJs in the wider context of epithelial tissues. We hypothesize the existence of adaptation mechanisms that regulate the formation and stability of AJs in different cellular contexts to allow the dynamic behavior of these complexes during tissue homeostasis and remodeling. PMID:24522006

  12. Microtubules CLASP to Adherens Junctions in epidermal progenitor cells

    PubMed Central

    Shahbazi, Marta N; Perez-Moreno, Mirna

    2014-01-01

    Cadherin-mediated cell adhesion at Adherens Junctions (AJs) and its dynamic connections with the microtubule (MT) cytoskeleton are important regulators of cellular architecture. However, the functional relevance of these interactions and the molecular players involved in different cellular contexts and cellular compartments are still not completely understood. Here, we comment on our recent findings showing that the MT plus-end binding protein CLASP2 interacts with the AJ component p120-catenin (p120) specifically in progenitor epidermal cells. Absence of either protein leads to alterations in MT dynamics and AJ functionality. These findings represent a novel mechanism of MT targeting to AJs that may be relevant for the maintenance of proper epidermal progenitor cell homeostasis. We also discuss the potential implication of other MT binding proteins previously associated to AJs in the wider context of epithelial tissues. We hypothesize the existence of adaptation mechanisms that regulate the formation and stability of AJs in different cellular contexts to allow the dynamic behavior of these complexes during tissue homeostasis and remodeling. PMID:24522006

  13. The Tuberculosis Necrotizing Toxin kills macrophages by hydrolyzing NAD

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jim; Siroy, Axel; Lokareddy, Ravi K.; Speer, Alexander; Doornbos, Kathryn S.; Cingolani, Gino; Niederweis, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) induces necrosis of infected cells to evade immune responses. Recently, we found that Mtb utilizes the protein CpnT to kill human macrophages by secreting its C-terminal domain, named tuberculosis necrotizing toxin (TNT) that induces necrosis by an unknown mechanism. Here we show that TNT gains access to the cytosol of Mtb-infected macrophages, where it hydrolyzes the essential co-enzyme nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+). Expression or injection of a non-catalytic TNT mutant showed no cytotoxicity in macrophages or zebrafish zygotes, respectively, demonstrating that the NAD+-glycohydrolase activity is required for TNT-induced cell death. To prevent self-poisoning, Mtb produces an immunity factor for TNT (IFT) that binds TNT and inhibits its activity. The crystal structure of the TNT-IFT complex revealed a novel NAD+-glycohydrolase fold of TNT, which constitutes the founding member of a toxin family wide-spread in pathogenic microorganisms. PMID:26237511

  14. The tuberculosis necrotizing toxin kills macrophages by hydrolyzing NAD.

    PubMed

    Sun, Jim; Siroy, Axel; Lokareddy, Ravi K; Speer, Alexander; Doornbos, Kathryn S; Cingolani, Gino; Niederweis, Michael

    2015-09-01

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) induces necrosis of infected cells to evade immune responses. Recently, we found that Mtb uses the protein CpnT to kill human macrophages by secreting its C-terminal domain, named tuberculosis necrotizing toxin (TNT), which induces necrosis by an unknown mechanism. Here we show that TNT gains access to the cytosol of Mtb-infected macrophages, where it hydrolyzes the essential coenzyme NAD(+). Expression or injection of a noncatalytic TNT mutant showed no cytotoxicity in macrophages or in zebrafish zygotes, respectively, thus demonstrating that the NAD(+) glycohydrolase activity is required for TNT-induced cell death. To prevent self-poisoning, Mtb produces an immunity factor for TNT (IFT) that binds TNT and inhibits its activity. The crystal structure of the TNT-IFT complex revealed a new NAD(+) glycohydrolase fold of TNT, the founding member of a toxin family widespread in pathogenic microorganisms. PMID:26237511

  15. Antiradiation Vaccine: Immunological neutralization of Radiation Toxins at Acute Radiation Syndromes.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popov, Dmitri; Maliev, Slava

    Introduction: Current medical management of the Acute Radiation Syndromes (ARS) does not include immune prophylaxis based on the Antiradiation Vaccine. Existing principles for the treatment of acute radiation syndromes are based on the replacement and supportive therapy. Haemotopoietic cell transplantation is recomended as an important method of treatment of a Haemopoietic form of the ARS. Though in the different hospitals and institutions, 31 pa-tients with a haemopoietic form have previously undergone transplantation with stem cells, in all cases(100%) the transplantants were rejected. Lethality rate was 87%.(N.Daniak et al. 2005). A large amount of biological substances or antigens isolated from bacterias (flagellin and derivates), plants, different types of venom (honeybees, scorpions, snakes) have been studied. This biological active substances can produce a nonspecific stimulation of immune system of mammals and protect against of mild doses of irradiation. But their radioprotection efficacy against high doses of radiation were not sufficient. Relative radioprotection characteristics or adaptive properties of antioxidants were expressed only at mild doses of radiation. However antioxidants demonstrated a very low protective efficacy at high doses of radiation. Some ex-periments demonstrated even a harmful effect of antioxidants administered to animals that had severe forms of the ARS. Only Specific Radiation Toxins roused a specific antigenic stim-ulation of antibody synthesis. An active immunization by non-toxic doses of radiation toxins includes a complex of radiation toxins that we call the Specific Radiation Determinant (SRD). Immunization must be provided not less than 24 days before irradiation and it is effective up to three years and more. Active immunization by radiation toxins significantly reduces the mortality rate (100%) and improves survival rate up to 60% compare with the 0% sur-vival rate among the irradiated animals in control groups

  16. SUPERNOVA REMNANT PROGENITOR MASSES IN M31

    SciTech Connect

    Jennings, Zachary G.; Williams, Benjamin F.; Dalcanton, Julianne J.; Gilbert, Karoline M.; Fouesneau, Morgan; Weisz, Daniel R.; Murphy, Jeremiah W.; Dolphin, Andrew E. E-mail: adolphin@raytheon.com

    2012-12-10

    Using Hubble Space Telescope photometry, we age-date 59 supernova remnants (SNRs) in the spiral galaxy M31 and use these ages to estimate zero-age main-sequence masses (M{sub ZAMS}) for their progenitors. To accomplish this, we create color-magnitude diagrams (CMDs) and employ CMD fitting to measure the recent star formation history of the regions surrounding cataloged SNR sites. We identify any young coeval population that likely produced the progenitor star, then assign an age and uncertainty to that population. Application of stellar evolution models allows us to infer the M{sub ZAMS} from this age. Because our technique is not contingent on identification or precise location of the progenitor star, it can be applied to the location of any known SNRs. We identify significant young star formation around 53 of the 59 SNRs and assign progenitor masses to these, representing a factor of {approx}2 increase over currently measured progenitor masses. We consider the remaining six SNRs as either probable Type Ia candidates or the result of core-collapse progenitors that have escaped their birth sites. In general, the distribution of recovered progenitor masses is bottom-heavy, showing a paucity of the most massive stars. If we assume a single power-law distribution, dN/dM{proportional_to}M{sup {alpha}}, then we find a distribution that is steeper than a Salpeter initial mass function (IMF) ({alpha} = -2.35). In particular, we find values of {alpha} outside the range -2.7 {>=} {alpha} {>=} -4.4 to be inconsistent with our measured distribution at 95% confidence. If instead we assume a distribution that follows a Salpeter IMF up to some maximum mass, then we find that values of M{sub Max} > 26 are inconsistent with the measured distribution at 95% confidence. In either scenario, the data suggest that some fraction of massive stars may not explode. The result is preliminary and requires more SNRs and further analysis. In addition, we use our distribution to estimate a

  17. Lipophilic toxin profiles detected in farmed and benthic mussels populations from the most relevant production zones in Southern Chile.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Carlos; Rodriguez-Unda, Nelson; Contreras, Cristóbal; Barriga, Andrés; Lagos, Néstor

    2012-01-01

    Lipophilic toxins associated with diarrhoeic toxins were found in Mytilus chilensis (Blue mussels) and Aulacomya ater (Ribbed mussels). These shellfish samples were collected from Chiloe Island, Southern Chile. The samples were tested by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). After the analysis, four toxins were found: DTX-1, DTX-3, YTX and PTX. All toxins were identified by comparing their HPLC retention times with those of analytical standards and confirmed by LC-MS/MS. Dinophysistoxin-1 (DTX-1) and dinophysistoxin-3 (DTX-3) toxins were the major components within the mussel extracts. Nevertheless, the percentages of these toxins differed depending on the area they were collected from and/or the sampling date. The levels detected in Butacheuques Island for okadaic acid (OA) was 267 ± 3.5 µg OA eq kg(-1) (p < 0.05) and for DTX-3 was 183.4 ± 7.5 µg kg(-1) in ribbed mussels. Pectenotoxin (PTX) and yessotoxin (YTX) were the toxins detected in minor proportions in the toxic profile of the bivalves. The maximum concentration of YTX detected in ribbed mussels was 85.2 ± 2.8 µg kg(-1) in Mechuque Island, whereas the PTX-2 level in ribbed mussels was 82.0 ± 2.4 µg kg(-1) in Cailin Island. Analogues of YTX and PTX-2 were not detected in any of the analysed mussels, which did not support the supposed presence of isomers of toxins as a result of the enzymatic metabolism of bivalves. This study found evidence proving co-occurrence of lipophilic toxins - like PTX and YTX - with diarrhoeic toxin in samples collected in Southern Chile, which is, to date, the more complex mix of lipophilic toxins ever found in mussels samples from Southern Chile. PMID:22424031

  18. Toxin-induced hyperthermic syndromes.

    PubMed

    Rusyniak, Daniel E; Sprague, Jon E

    2005-11-01

    Toxin-induced hyperthermic syndromes are important to consider in the differential diagnosis of patients presenting with fever and muscle rigidity. If untreated, toxin-induced hyperthermia may result in fatal hyperthermia with multisystem organ failure. All of these syndromes have at their center the disruption of normal thermogenic mechanisms, resulting in the activation of the hypothalamus and sympathetic nervous systems.The result of this thermogenic dysregulation is excess heat generation combined with impaired heat dissipation. Although many similarities exist among the clinical presentations and pathophysiologies of toxin-induced hyperthermic syndromes, important differences exist among their triggers and treatments. Serotonin syndrome typically occurs within hours of the addition ofa new serotonergic agent or the abuse of stimulants such as MDMA or methamphetamine. Treatment involves discontinuing the offending agent and administering either a central serotonergic antagonist, such as cyproheptadine or chlorpromazine, a benzodiazepine, or a combination of the two. NMS typically occurs over hours to days in a patient taking a neuroleptic agent; its recommended treatment is generally the combination of a central dopamine agonist, bromocriptine or L-dopa, and dantrolene. In those patients in whom it is difficult to differentiate between serotonin and neuroleptic malignant syndromes, the physical examination may be helpful:clonus and hyperreflexia are more suggestive of serotonin syndrome,whereas lead-pipe rigidity is suggestive of NMS. In patients in whom serotonin syndrome and NMS cannot be differentiated, benzodiazepines represent the safest therapeutic option. MH presents rapidly with jaw rigidity, hyperthermia, and hypercarbia. Although it almost always occurs in the setting of surgical anesthesia, cases have occurred in susceptible individuals during exertion. The treatment of MH involves the use of dantrolene. Future improvements in understanding the

  19. Botulinum toxin: The Midas touch

    PubMed Central

    Shilpa, P. S.; Kaul, Rachna; Sultana, Nishat; Bhat, Suraksha

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum Toxin (BT) is a natural molecule produced during growth and autolysis of bacterium called Clostridium botulinum. Use of BT for cosmetic purposes has gained popularity over past two decades, and recently, other therapeutic uses of BT has been extensively studied. BT is considered as a minimally invasive agent that can be used in the treatment of various orofacial disorders and improving the quality of life in such patients. The objective of this article is to review the nature, mechanism of action of BT, and its application in various head and neck diseases. PMID:24678189

  20. Botulinum toxin: The Midas touch.

    PubMed

    Shilpa, P S; Kaul, Rachna; Sultana, Nishat; Bhat, Suraksha

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum Toxin (BT) is a natural molecule produced during growth and autolysis of bacterium called Clostridium botulinum. Use of BT for cosmetic purposes has gained popularity over past two decades, and recently, other therapeutic uses of BT has been extensively studied. BT is considered as a minimally invasive agent that can be used in the treatment of various orofacial disorders and improving the quality of life in such patients. The objective of this article is to review the nature, mechanism of action of BT, and its application in various head and neck diseases. PMID:24678189

  1. Tremorgenic toxin from Penicillium veruculosum.

    PubMed

    Cole, R J; Kirksey, J W; Moore, J H; Blankenship, B R; Diener, U L; Davis, N D

    1972-08-01

    A new mycotoxin that produces severe tremors and acute toxicity when administered orally or intraperitoneally (ip) to mice and 1-day-old cockerels was obtained from a strain of Penicillium verruculosum Peyronel isolated from peanuts. The ip 50% lethal dose (LD(50)) of this tremorgen was 2.4 mg/kg in mice and 15.2 mg/kg in chickens. Orally administered LD(50) values for the toxin were 126.7 mg/kg in mice and 365.5 mg/kg in chickens. The trivial name "verruculogen" is proposed for this tremorgenic mycotoxin. Physical and chemical characteristics of the mycotoxin are described. PMID:4341967

  2. Tremorgenic Toxin from Penicillium verruculosum

    PubMed Central

    Cole, R. J.; Kirksey, J. W.; Moore, J. H.; Blankenship, B. R.; Diener, U. L.; Davis, N. D.

    1972-01-01

    A new mycotoxin that produces severe tremors and acute toxicity when administered orally or intraperitoneally (ip) to mice and 1-day-old cockerels was obtained from a strain of Penicillium verruculosum Peyronel isolated from peanuts. The ip 50% lethal dose (LD50) of this tremorgen was 2.4 mg/kg in mice and 15.2 mg/kg in chickens. Orally administered LD50 values for the toxin were 126.7 mg/kg in mice and 365.5 mg/kg in chickens. The trivial name „verruculogen” is proposed for this tremorgenic mycotoxin. Physical and chemical characteristics of the mycotoxin are described. PMID:4341967

  3. Diversification of a single ancestral gene into a successful toxin superfamily in highly venomous Australian funnel-web spiders

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Spiders have evolved pharmacologically complex venoms that serve to rapidly subdue prey and deter predators. The major toxic factors in most spider venoms are small, disulfide-rich peptides. While there is abundant evidence that snake venoms evolved by recruitment of genes encoding normal body proteins followed by extensive gene duplication accompanied by explosive structural and functional diversification, the evolutionary trajectory of spider-venom peptides is less clear. Results Here we present evidence of a spider-toxin superfamily encoding a high degree of sequence and functional diversity that has evolved via accelerated duplication and diversification of a single ancestral gene. The peptides within this toxin superfamily are translated as prepropeptides that are posttranslationally processed to yield the mature toxin. The N-terminal signal sequence, as well as the protease recognition site at the junction of the propeptide and mature toxin are conserved, whereas the remainder of the propeptide and mature toxin sequences are variable. All toxin transcripts within this superfamily exhibit a striking cysteine codon bias. We show that different pharmacological classes of toxins within this peptide superfamily evolved under different evolutionary selection pressures. Conclusions Overall, this study reinforces the hypothesis that spiders use a combinatorial peptide library strategy to evolve a complex cocktail of peptide toxins that target neuronal receptors and ion channels in prey and predators. We show that the ω-hexatoxins that target insect voltage-gated calcium channels evolved under the influence of positive Darwinian selection in an episodic fashion, whereas the κ-hexatoxins that target insect calcium-activated potassium channels appear to be under negative selection. A majority of the diversifying sites in the ω-hexatoxins are concentrated on the molecular surface of the toxins, thereby facilitating neofunctionalisation leading to new toxin

  4. Multifunctional-autoprocessing repeats-in-toxin (MARTX) Toxins of Vibrios

    PubMed Central

    Satchell, Karla J. F.

    2015-01-01

    Multifunctional-autoprocessing repeats-in-toxin (MARTX) toxins are a heterogeneous group of toxins found in a number of Vibrio species and other Gram-negative bacteria. The toxins are composed of conserved repeat regions and an autoprocessing protease domain that together function as a delivery platform for transfer of cytotoxic and cytopathic domains into target eukaryotic cell cytosol. Within the cells, the effectors can alter biological processes such as signaling or cytoskeletal structure, presumably to the benefit of the bacterium. Ten effector domains are found in the various Vibrio MARTX toxins, although any one toxin carries only two to five effector domains. The specific toxin variant expressed by a species can be modified by homologous recombination to acquire or lose effector domains, such that different strains within the same species can express distinct variants of the toxins. This review examines the conserved structural elements of the MARTX toxins and details the different toxin arrangements carried by Vibrio species and strains. The catalytic function of domains and how the toxins are linked to pathogenesis of human and animals is described. PMID:26185092

  5. Identification and characterization of toxins in the venom gland of the Chinese bird spider, Haplopelma hainanum, by transcriptomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Ting-Cai; Long, Ren-Wen; Wu, Yu-Qian; Guo, You-Bing; Liu, Duo-Lian; Peng, Li; Li, Dai-Qin; Yang, Dai-Wen; Xu, Xin; Liu, Feng-Xiang; Xia, Qing-You

    2016-06-01

    Tarantula venoms provide a model system for studying toxin selectivity, structure-activity relationships and molecular evolution of peptide toxins. Previous studies have identified a large number of peptide toxins in the venom of the Chinese bird spider Haplopelma hainanum, generally regarded as a highly venomous spider. However, the lack of available RNA-seq transcriptomic and genomic data is an obstacle to understanding its venom at the molecular level. In this study, we investigated the venom gland transcriptome of H. hainanum by RNA-seq, in the absence of an available genomic sequence. We identified 201 potential toxins among 57 181 de novo assembled transcripts, including knottins, Kunitz-type toxins, enzymes and other proteins. We systematically identified most of the knottins and Kunitz-type toxins, some of which showed strongly biased expression in the venom gland, including members of the huwentoxin-1, huwentoxin-2 and magi-1 families. We also discovered several novel potential toxins. These data demonstrate the high molecular and structural diversity in the venom toxins of H. hainanum. This study offers a useful strategy for exploring the complex components of spider venoms. PMID:26678257

  6. Plant Insecticidal Toxins in Ecological Networks

    PubMed Central

    Ibanez, Sébastien; Gallet, Christiane; Després, Laurence

    2012-01-01

    Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects’ vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology. PMID:22606374

  7. Formation and Control of Cyanobacterial Toxins

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation will cover the formation of harmful algal blooms and the control of their toxins. Data will be presented from current ORD projects on the treatment of cyanobacterial toxins through drinking water treatment facilities. The results will demonstrate that current c...

  8. Stool Test: C. Difficile Toxin (For Parents)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Things to Know About Zika & Pregnancy Stool Test: C. Difficile Toxin KidsHealth > For Parents > Stool Test: C. Difficile Toxin Print A A A Text Size ... Questions en español Muestra de materia fecal: toxina C. difficile What It Is A stool (feces) sample ...

  9. [T-2 toxin: occurrence and detection].

    PubMed

    Dohnal, V; Jezková, A; Kuca, K; Jun, D

    2007-07-01

    The paper is focused on the occurrence and methods for the detection of T-2 toxin, one of the most toxic trichothecene Fusarium mycotoxin. Due to its physical-chemical properties and high toxicity, T-2 toxin is classified as a potential biological warfare agent. PMID:17969315

  10. The Ins and Outs of Anthrax Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Friebe, Sarah; van der Goot, F. Gisou; Bürgi, Jérôme

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax is a severe, although rather rare, infectious disease that is caused by the Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis. The infectious form is the spore and the major virulence factors of the bacterium are its poly-γ-D-glutamic acid capsule and the tripartite anthrax toxin. The discovery of the anthrax toxin receptors in the early 2000s has allowed in-depth studies on the mechanisms of anthrax toxin cellular entry and translocation from the endocytic compartment to the cytoplasm. The toxin generally hijacks the endocytic pathway of CMG2 and TEM8, the two anthrax toxin receptors, in order to reach the endosomes. From there, the pore-forming subunit of the toxin inserts into endosomal membranes and enables translocation of the two catalytic subunits. Insertion of the pore-forming unit preferentially occurs in intraluminal vesicles rather than the limiting membrane of the endosome, leading to the translocation of the enzymatic subunits in the lumen of these vesicles. This has important consequences that will be discussed. Ultimately, the toxins reach the cytosol where they act on their respective targets. Target modification has severe consequences on cell behavior, in particular on cells of the immune system, allowing the spread of the bacterium, in severe cases leading to host death. Here we will review the literature on anthrax disease with a focus on the structure of the toxin, how it enters cells and its immunological effects. PMID:26978402

  11. The Ins and Outs of Anthrax Toxin.

    PubMed

    Friebe, Sarah; van der Goot, F Gisou; Bürgi, Jérôme

    2016-03-01

    Anthrax is a severe, although rather rare, infectious disease that is caused by the Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis. The infectious form is the spore and the major virulence factors of the bacterium are its poly-γ-D-glutamic acid capsule and the tripartite anthrax toxin. The discovery of the anthrax toxin receptors in the early 2000s has allowed in-depth studies on the mechanisms of anthrax toxin cellular entry and translocation from the endocytic compartment to the cytoplasm. The toxin generally hijacks the endocytic pathway of CMG2 and TEM8, the two anthrax toxin receptors, in order to reach the endosomes. From there, the pore-forming subunit of the toxin inserts into endosomal membranes and enables translocation of the two catalytic subunits. Insertion of the pore-forming unit preferentially occurs in intraluminal vesicles rather than the limiting membrane of the endosome, leading to the translocation of the enzymatic subunits in the lumen of these vesicles. This has important consequences that will be discussed. Ultimately, the toxins reach the cytosol where they act on their respective targets. Target modification has severe consequences on cell behavior, in particular on cells of the immune system, allowing the spread of the bacterium, in severe cases leading to host death. Here we will review the literature on anthrax disease with a focus on the structure of the toxin, how it enters cells and its immunological effects. PMID:26978402

  12. Structure of a Bimodular Botulinum Neurotoxin Complex Provides Insights into Its Oral Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Lei; Le, Thi Tuc Nghi; Cheng, Luisa W.; Strotmeier, Jasmin; Kruel, Anna Magdalena; Yao, Guorui; Perry, Kay; Rummel, Andreas; Jin, Rongsheng

    2013-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are produced by Clostridium botulinum and cause the fatal disease botulism, a flaccid paralysis of the muscle. BoNTs are released together with several auxiliary proteins as progenitor toxin complexes (PTCs) to become highly potent oral poisons. Here, we report the structure of a ∼760 kDa 14-subunit large PTC of serotype A (L-PTC/A) and reveal insight into its absorption mechanism. Using a combination of X-ray crystallography, electron microscopy, and functional studies, we found that L-PTC/A consists of two structurally and functionally independent sub-complexes. A hetero-dimeric 290 kDa complex protects BoNT, while a hetero-dodecameric 470 kDa complex facilitates its absorption in the harsh environment of the gastrointestinal tract. BoNT absorption is mediated by nine glycan-binding sites on the dodecameric sub-complex that forms multivalent interactions with carbohydrate receptors on intestinal epithelial cells. We identified monosaccharides that blocked oral BoNT intoxication in mice, which suggests a new strategy for the development of preventive countermeasures for BoNTs based on carbohydrate receptor mimicry. PMID:24130488

  13. Structure and Proposed Activity of a Member of the VapBC Family of Toxin-Antitoxin Systems: VapBC-5 from Mycobacterium tuberculosis

    SciTech Connect

    Miallau, L.; Faller, M.; Chiang, J.; Arbing, M.; Guo, F.; Cascio, D.; Eisenberg, D.

    2009-03-02

    In prokaryotes, cognate toxin-antitoxin pairs have long been known, but no three-dimensional structure has been available for any given complex from Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Here we report the crystal structure and activity of a member of the VapBC family of complexes from M. tuberculosis. The toxin VapC-5 is a compact, 150 residues, two domain {alpha}/{beta} protein. Bent around the toxin is the VapB-5 antitoxin, a 33-residue {alpha}-helix. Assays suggest that the toxin is an Mg-enabled endoribonuclease, inhibited by the antitoxin. The lack of DNase activity is consistent with earlier suggestions that the complex represses its own operon. Furthermore, analysis of the interactions in the binding of the antitoxin to the toxin suggest that exquisite control is required to protect the bacteria cell from toxic VapC-5.

  14. Brown spider dermonecrotic toxin directly induces nephrotoxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Sade, Youssef Bacila; Bertoni da Silveira, Rafael; Toma, Leny; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chavez-Olortegui, Carlos; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; Gremski, Waldemiro; Dietrich, Carl Peter von; Nader, Helena B.; Sanches Veiga, Silvio . E-mail: veigass@ufpr.br

    2006-02-15

    Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom can induce dermonecrotic lesions at the bite site and systemic manifestations including fever, vomiting, convulsions, disseminated intravascular coagulation, hemolytic anemia and acute renal failure. The venom is composed of a mixture of proteins with several molecules biochemically and biologically well characterized. The mechanism by which the venom induces renal damage is unknown. By using mice exposed to Loxosceles intermedia recombinant dermonecrotic toxin (LiRecDT), we showed direct induction of renal injuries. Microscopic analysis of renal biopsies from dermonecrotic toxin-treated mice showed histological alterations including glomerular edema and tubular necrosis. Hyalinization of tubules with deposition of proteinaceous material in the tubule lumen, tubule epithelial cell vacuoles, tubular edema and epithelial cell lysis was also observed. Leukocytic infiltration was neither observed in the glomerulus nor the tubules. Renal vessels showed no sign of inflammatory response. Additionally, biochemical analyses showed such toxin-induced changes in renal function as urine alkalinization, hematuria and azotemia with elevation of blood urea nitrogen levels. Immunofluorescence with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies and confocal microscopy analysis showed deposition and direct binding of this toxin to renal intrinsic structures. By immunoblotting with a hyperimmune dermonecrotic toxin antiserum on renal lysates from toxin-treated mice, we detected a positive signal at the region of 33-35 kDa, which strengthens the idea that renal failure is directly induced by dermonecrotic toxin. Immunofluorescence reaction with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies revealed deposition and binding of this toxin directly in MDCK epithelial cells in culture. Similarly, dermonecrotic toxin treatment caused morphological alterations of MDCK cells including cytoplasmic vacuoles, blebs, evoked impaired spreading and detached cells from each other and from

  15. A Defined, Controlled Culture System for Primary Bovine Chromaffin Progenitors Reveals Novel Biomarkers and Modulators

    PubMed Central

    Masjkur, Jimmy; Levenfus, Ian; Lange, Sven; Arps-Forker, Carina; Poser, Steve; Qin, Nan; Vukicevic, Vladimir; Chavakis, Triantafyllos; Eisenhofer, Graeme; Bornstein, Stefan R.; Ehrhart-Bornstein, Monika

    2014-01-01

    We present a method to efficiently culture primary chromaffin progenitors from the adult bovine adrenal medulla in a defined, serum-free monolayer system. Tissue is dissociated and plated for expansion under support by the mitogen basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF). The cultures, although not homogenous, contain a subpopulation of cells expressing the neural stem cell marker Hes3 that also propagate. In addition, Hes3 is also expressed in the adult adrenal medulla from where the tissue is taken. Differentiation is induced by bFGF withdrawal and switching to Neurobasal medium containing B27. Following differentiation, Hes3 expression is lost, and cells acquire morphologies and biomarker expression patterns of chromaffin cells and dopaminergic neurons. We tested the effect of different treatments that we previously showed regulate Hes3 expression and cell number in cultures of fetal and adult rodent neural stem cells. Treatment of the cultures with a combination of Delta4, Angiopoietin2, and a Janus kinase inhibitor increases cell number during the expansion phase without significantly affecting catecholamine content levels. Treatment with cholera toxin does not significantly affect cell number but reduces the ratio of epinephrine to norepinephrine content and increases the dopamine content relative to total catecholamines. These data suggest that this defined culture system can be used for target identification in drug discovery programs and that the transcription factor Hes3 may serve as a new biomarker of putative adrenomedullary chromaffin progenitor cells. PMID:24855275

  16. Potential Reparative Role of Resident Adult Renal Stem/Progenitor Cells in Acute Kidney Injury

    PubMed Central

    Sallustio, Fabio; Serino, Grazia; Schena, Francesco Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Human kidney is particularly susceptible to ischemia and toxins with consequential tubular necrosis and activation of inflammatory processes. This process can lead to the acute renal injury, and even if the kidney has a great capacity for regeneration after tubular damage, in several circumstances, the normal renal repair program may not be sufficient to achieve a successful regeneration. Resident adult renal stem/progenitor cells could participate in this repair process and have the potentiality to enhance the renal regenerative mechanism. This could be achieved both directly, by means of their capacity to differentiate and integrate into the renal tissues, and by means of paracrine factors able to induce or improve the renal repair or regeneration. Recent genetic fate-tracing studies indicated that tubular damage is instead repaired by proliferative duplication of epithelial cells, acquiring a transient progenitor phenotype and by fate-restricted clonal cell progeny emerging from different nephron segments. In this review, we discuss about the properties and the reparative characteristics of high regenerative CD133+/CD24+ cells, with a view to a future application of these cells for the treatment of acute renal injury. PMID:26309808

  17. The toxin component of targeted anti-tumor toxins determines their efficacy increase by saponins.

    PubMed

    Weng, Alexander; Thakur, Mayank; Beceren-Braun, Figen; Bachran, Diana; Bachran, Christopher; Riese, Sebastian B; Jenett-Siems, Kristina; Gilabert-Oriol, Roger; Melzig, Matthias F; Fuchs, Hendrik

    2012-06-01

    Tumor-targeting protein toxins are composed of a toxic enzyme coupled to a specific cell binding domain that targets cancer-associated antigens. The anti-tumor treatment by targeted toxins is accompanied by dose-limiting side effects. The future prospects of targeted toxins for therapeutic use in humans will be determined by reduce side effects. Certain plant secondary metabolites (saponins) were shown to increase the efficacy of a particular epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted toxin, paralleled by a tremendous decrease of side effects. This study was conducted in order to investigate the effects of substituting different toxin moieties fused to an EGF ligand binding domain on the augmentative ability of saponins for each against therapeutic potential of the saponin-mediated efficacy increase for different anti-tumor toxins targeting the EGFR. We designed several EGFR-targeted toxins varying in the toxic moiety. Each targeted toxin was used in combination with a purified saponin (SA1641), isolated from the ornamental plant Gypsophila paniculata L. SA1641 was characterized and the SA1641-mediated efficacy increase was investigated on EGFR-transfected NIH-3T3 cells. We observed a high dependency of the SA1641-mediated efficacy increase on the nature of toxin used for the construction of the targeted toxin, indicating high specificity. Structural alignments revealed a high homology between saporin and dianthin-30, the two toxic moieties that benefit most from the combination with SA1641. We further demonstrate that SA1641 did not influence the plasma membrane permeability, indicating an intracellular interaction of SA1641 and the toxin components of targeted toxins. Surface plasmon resonance measurements point to a transient binding of SA1641 to the toxin components of targeted toxins. PMID:22309811

  18. Antiradiation Vaccine: Immunological neutralization of Radiation Toxins at Acute Radiation Syndromes.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popov, Dmitri; Maliev, Slava

    Introduction: Current medical management of the Acute Radiation Syndromes (ARS) does not include immune prophylaxis based on the Antiradiation Vaccine. Existing principles for the treatment of acute radiation syndromes are based on the replacement and supportive therapy. Haemotopoietic cell transplantation is recomended as an important method of treatment of a Haemopoietic form of the ARS. Though in the different hospitals and institutions, 31 pa-tients with a haemopoietic form have previously undergone transplantation with stem cells, in all cases(100%) the transplantants were rejected. Lethality rate was 87%.(N.Daniak et al. 2005). A large amount of biological substances or antigens isolated from bacterias (flagellin and derivates), plants, different types of venom (honeybees, scorpions, snakes) have been studied. This biological active substances can produce a nonspecific stimulation of immune system of mammals and protect against of mild doses of irradiation. But their radioprotection efficacy against high doses of radiation were not sufficient. Relative radioprotection characteristics or adaptive properties of antioxidants were expressed only at mild doses of radiation. However antioxidants demonstrated a very low protective efficacy at high doses of radiation. Some ex-periments demonstrated even a harmful effect of antioxidants administered to animals that had severe forms of the ARS. Only Specific Radiation Toxins roused a specific antigenic stim-ulation of antibody synthesis. An active immunization by non-toxic doses of radiation toxins includes a complex of radiation toxins that we call the Specific Radiation Determinant (SRD). Immunization must be provided not less than 24 days before irradiation and it is effective up to three years and more. Active immunization by radiation toxins significantly reduces the mortality rate (100%) and improves survival rate up to 60% compare with the 0% sur-vival rate among the irradiated animals in control groups

  19. Periodontal Bioengineering: A Discourse in Surface Topographies, Progenitor Cells and Molecular Profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dangaria, Smit J.

    2011-12-01

    uniquely derived from pre-implantation green fluorescent protein (GFP)-labeled progenitors. Together, these studies illustrate the capacity of natural extracellular surface topographies to instruct PDLPs to fully regenerate complex cellular and structural morphologies of tissues once lost to disease. We suggest that our strategy could be used for the replantation of teeth lost due to trauma or as a novel approach for tooth replacement using tooth-shaped replicas.

  20. Development of an ELISA microarray assay for the sensitive and simultaneous detection of ten biodefense toxins.

    SciTech Connect

    Jenko, Kathryn; Zhang, Yanfeng; Kostenko, Yulia; Fan, Yongfeng; Garcia-Rodriguez, Consuelo; Lou, Jianlong; Marks, James D.; Varnum, Susan M.

    2014-10-21

    Plant and microbial toxins are considered bioterrorism threat agents because of their extreme toxicity and/or ease of availability. Additionally, some of these toxins are increasingly responsible for accidental food poisonings. The current study utilized an ELISA-based protein antibody microarray for the multiplexed detection of ten biothreat toxins, botulinum neurotoxins (BoNT) A, B, C, D, E, F, ricin, shiga toxins 1 and 2 (Stx), and staphylococcus enterotoxin B (SEB), in buffer and complex biological matrices. The multiplexed assay displayed a sensitivity of 1.3 pg/mL (BoNT/A, BoNT/B, SEB, Stx-1 and Stx-2), 3.3 pg/mL (BoNT/C, BoNT/E, BoNT/F) and 8.2 pg/mL (BoNT/D, ricin). All assays demonstrated high accuracy (75-120 percent recovery) and reproducibility (most coefficients of variation < 20%). Quantification curves for the ten toxins were also evaluated in clinical samples (serum, plasma, nasal fluid, saliva, stool, and urine) and environmental samples (apple juice, milk and baby food) with overall minimal matrix effects. The multiplex assays were highly specific, with little crossreactivity observed between the selected toxin antibodies. The results demonstrate a multiplex microarray that improves current immunoassay sensitivity for biological warfare agents in buffer, clinical, and environmental samples.

  1. A Monoclonal Antibody Based Capture ELISA for Botulinum Neurotoxin Serotype B: Toxin Detection in Food

    PubMed Central

    Stanker, Larry H.; Scotcher, Miles C.; Cheng, Luisa; Ching, Kathryn; McGarvey, Jeffery; Hodge, David; Hnasko, Robert

    2013-01-01

    Botulism is a serious foodborne neuroparalytic disease, caused by botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), produced by the anaerobic bacterium Clostridium botulinum. Seven toxin serotypes (A – H) have been described. The majority of human cases of botulism are caused by serotypes A and B followed by E and F. We report here a group of serotype B specific monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) capable of binding toxin under physiological conditions. Thus, they serve as capture antibodies for a sandwich (capture) ELISA. The antibodies were generated using recombinant peptide fragments corresponding to the receptor-binding domain of the toxin heavy chain as immunogen. Their binding properties suggest that they bind a complex epitope with dissociation constants (KD’s) for individual antibodies ranging from 10 to 48 × 10−11 M. Assay performance for all possible combinations of capture-detector antibody pairs was evaluated and the antibody pair resulting in the lowest level of detection (L.O.D.), ~20 pg/mL was determined. Toxin was detected in spiked dairy samples with good recoveries at concentrations as low as 0.5 pg/mL and in ground beef samples at levels as low as 2 ng/g. Thus, the sandwich ELISA described here uses mAb for both the capture and detector antibodies (binding different epitopes on the toxin molecule) and readily detects toxin in those food samples tested. PMID:24253240

  2. Emergent toxins in North Atlantic temperate waters: a challenge for monitoring programs and legislation.

    PubMed

    Silva, Marisa; Pratheepa, Vijaya K; Botana, Luis M; Vasconcelos, Vitor

    2015-03-01

    Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB) are complex to manage due to their intermittent nature and their severe impact on the economy and human health. The conditions which promote HAB have not yet been fully explained, though climate change and anthropogenic intervention are pointed as significant factors. The rise of water temperature, the opening of new sea canals and the introduction of ship ballast waters all contribute to the dispersion and establishment of toxin-producing invasive species that promote the settling of emergent toxins in the food-chain. Tetrodotoxin, ciguatoxin, palytoxin and cyclic imines are commonly reported in warm waters but have also caused poisoning incidents in temperate zones. There is evidence that monitoring for these toxins exclusively in bivalves is simplistic and underestimates the risk to public health, since new vectors have been reported for these toxins and as well for regulated toxins such as PSTs and DSTs. In order to avoid public health impacts, there is a need for adequate monitoring programs, a need for establishing appropriate legislation, and a need for optimizing effective methods of analysis. In this review, we will compile evidence concerning emergent marine toxins and provide data that may indicate the need to restructure the current monitoring programs of HAB. PMID:25785464

  3. A comparative structure-function analysis of active-site inhibitors of Vibrio cholerae cholix toxin.

    PubMed

    Lugo, Miguel R; Merrill, A Rod

    2015-09-01

    Cholix toxin from Vibrio cholerae is a novel mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase (mART) toxin that shares structural and functional properties with Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A and Corynebacterium diphtheriae diphtheria toxin. Herein, we have used the high-resolution X-ray structure of full-length cholix toxin in the apo form, NAD(+) bound, and 10 structures of the cholix catalytic domain (C-domain) complexed with several strong inhibitors of toxin enzyme activity (NAP, PJ34, and the P-series) to study the binding mode of the ligands. A pharmacophore model based on the active pose of NAD(+) was compared with the active conformation of the inhibitors, which revealed a cationic feature in the side chain of the inhibitors that may determine the active pose. Moreover, a conformational search was conducted for the missing coordinates of one of the main active-site loops (R-loop). The resulting structural models were used to evaluate the interaction energies and for 3D-QSAR modeling. Implications for a rational drug design approach for mART toxins were derived. PMID:25756608

  4. Emergent Toxins in North Atlantic Temperate Waters: A Challenge for Monitoring Programs and Legislation

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Marisa; Pratheepa, Vijaya K.; Botana, Luis M.; Vasconcelos, Vitor

    2015-01-01

    Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB) are complex to manage due to their intermittent nature and their severe impact on the economy and human health. The conditions which promote HAB have not yet been fully explained, though climate change and anthropogenic intervention are pointed as significant factors. The rise of water temperature, the opening of new sea canals and the introduction of ship ballast waters all contribute to the dispersion and establishment of toxin-producing invasive species that promote the settling of emergent toxins in the food-chain. Tetrodotoxin, ciguatoxin, palytoxin and cyclic imines are commonly reported in warm waters but have also caused poisoning incidents in temperate zones. There is evidence that monitoring for these toxins exclusively in bivalves is simplistic and underestimates the risk to public health, since new vectors have been reported for these toxins and as well for regulated toxins such as PSTs and DSTs. In order to avoid public health impacts, there is a need for adequate monitoring programs, a need for establishing appropriate legislation, and a need for optimizing effective methods of analysis. In this review, we will compile evidence concerning emergent marine toxins and provide data that may indicate the need to restructure the current monitoring programs of HAB. PMID:25785464

  5. Label-free electronic detection of bio-toxins using aligned carbon nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Palaniappan, Al; Goh, W H; Fam, D W H; Rajaseger, G; Chan, C E Z; Hanson, B J; Moochhala, S M; Mhaisalkar, S G; Liedberg, B

    2013-05-15

    A facile route for sensitive label-free detection of bio-toxins using aligned single walled carbon nanotubes is described. This approach involves patterning of a catalyst on the surface of a quartz substrate using a sub-100 μm stripe-patterned polydimethylsiloxane stamp for aligned carbon nanotube generation followed by fabrication of field effect transistor (FET). Atomic force microscopy, field emission scanning electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy are employed to characterize the synthesized nanotubes. Unlike previous reports, the adopted approach enables direct electronic detection of bio-toxins with sensitivities comparable to ELISA. As a proof of concept, the fabricated FET responds to nM concentration levels (with a LOD of ∼2 nM) of epsilon toxin produced by Clostridium perfringens and a prominent food toxin. This facile approach could be customized to detect other classes of toxins and biomarkers upon appropriate functionalization of the aligned carbon nanotubes. Finally, we demonstrate the use of the FET-platform for detection of toxin in more complex matrices such as orange juice. PMID:23298625

  6. Tarantula toxins use common surfaces for interacting with Kv and ASIC ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, Kanchan; Zamanian, Maryam; Bae, Chanhyung; Milescu, Mirela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Tilley, Drew C; Sack, Jon T; Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Kim, Jae Il; Swartz, Kenton J

    2015-01-01

    Tarantula toxins that bind to voltage-sensing domains of voltage-activated ion channels are thought to partition into the membrane and bind to the channel within the bilayer. While no structures of a voltage-sensor toxin bound to a channel have been solved, a structural homolog, psalmotoxin (PcTx1), was recently crystalized in complex with the extracellular domain of an acid sensing ion channel (ASIC). In the present study we use spectroscopic, biophysical and computational approaches to compare membrane interaction properties and channel binding surfaces of PcTx1 with the voltage-sensor toxin guangxitoxin (GxTx-1E). Our results show that both types of tarantula toxins interact with membranes, but that voltage-sensor toxins partition deeper into the bilayer. In addition, our results suggest that tarantula toxins have evolved a similar concave surface for clamping onto α-helices that is effective in aqueous or lipidic physical environments. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06774.001 PMID:25948544

  7. Toxins

    MedlinePlus

    ... trace metals and others. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine . 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: ... Ford MD. Acute poisoning. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine . 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: ...

  8. AdE-1, a new inotropic Na(+) channel toxin from Aiptasia diaphana, is similar to, yet distinct from, known anemone Na(+) channel toxins.

    PubMed

    Nesher, Nir; Shapira, Eli; Sher, Daniel; Moran, Yehu; Tsveyer, Liora; Turchetti-Maia, Ana Luiza; Horowitz, Michal; Hochner, Binyamin; Zlotkin, Eliahu

    2013-04-01

    Heart failure is one of the most prevalent causes of death in the western world. Sea anemone contains a myriad of short peptide neurotoxins affecting many pharmacological targets, several of which possess cardiotonic activity. In the present study we describe the isolation and characterization of AdE-1 (ion channel modifier), a novel cardiotonic peptide from the sea anemone Aiptasia diaphana, which differs from other cnidarian toxins. Although AdE-1 has the same cysteine residue arrangement as sea anemone type 1 and 2 Na(+) channel toxins, its sequence contains many substitutions in conserved and essential sites and its overall homology to other toxins identified to date is low (<36%). Physiologically, AdE-1 increases the amplitude of cardiomyocyte contraction and slows the late phase of the twitch relaxation velocity with no induction of spontaneous twitching. It increases action potential duration of cardiomyocytes with no effect on its threshold and on the cell's resting potential. Similar to other sea anemone Na(+) channel toxins such as Av2 (Anemonia viridis toxin II), AdE-1 markedly inhibits Na(+) current inactivation with no significant effect on current activation, suggesting a similar mechanism of action. However, its effects on twitch relaxation velocity, action potential amplitude and on the time to peak suggest that this novel toxin affects cardiomyocyte function via a more complex mechanism. Additionally, Av2's characteristic delayed and early after-depolarizations were not observed. Despite its structural differences, AdE-1 physiologic effectiveness is comparable with Av2 with a similar ED(50) value to blowfly larvae. This finding raises questions regarding the extent of the universality of structure-function in sea anemone Na(+) channel toxins. PMID:23356888

  9. [Acute lymphoblastic leukemia of T progenitors: from biology to clinics].

    PubMed

    Genescà, Eulàlia; Ribera, Jordi; Ribera, Josep-Maria

    2015-03-01

    Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common cancer in children and the main cause of morbidity among childhood blood disorders. There are 2 subtypes according to the affected lymphoid progenitor: B-ALL and T-ALL. The T-ALL is the less common and, although historically was associated with poor prognosis in both adults and children, at present, treatment outcomes do not differ significantly between the 2 types of ALL. The T-ALL subtype is the most complex and heterogeneous at the genetic level and currently the one with less new therapeutic alternatives available. This trend is changing thanks to the remarkable progress upon understanding its biology. This review summarizes the most recent and important biological findings in T-ALL and their possible therapeutic implications. PMID:24667111

  10. HC toxin (a HDAC inhibitor) enhances IRS1-Akt signalling and metabolism in mouse myotubes.

    PubMed

    Tan, Hayden Weng Siong; Sim, Arthur Yi Loong; Huang, Su Ling; Leng, Ying; Long, Yun Chau

    2015-12-01

    Exercise enhances numerous signalling pathways and activates substrate metabolism in skeletal muscle. Small molecule compounds that activate these cellular responses have been shown to recapitulate the metabolic benefits of exercise. In this study, a histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor, HC toxin, was investigated as a small molecule compound that activates exercise-induced adaptations. In C2C12 myotubes, HC toxin treatment activated two exercise-stimulated pathways: AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) and Akt pathways. HC toxin increased the protein content and phosphorylation of insulin receptor substrate 1 as well as the activation of downstream Akt signalling. The effects of HC toxin on IRS1-Akt signalling were PI3K-dependent as wortmannin abolishes its effects on IRS1 protein accumulation and Akt phosphorylation. HC toxin-induced Akt activation was sufficient to enhance downstream mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1) signalling including p70S6K and S6, which were consistently abolished by PI3K inhibition. Insulin-stimulated glucose uptake, glycolysis, mitochondrial respiration and fatty acid oxidation were also enhanced in HC toxin-treated myotubes. When myotubes were challenged with serum starvation for the induction of atrophy, HC toxin treatment prevented the induction of genes that are involved in autophagy and proteasomal proteolysis. Conversely, IRS1-Akt signalling was not induced by HC toxin in several hepatoma cell lines, providing evidence for a favourable safety profile of this small molecule. These data highlight the potential of HDAC inhibitors as a novel class of small molecules for the induction of exercise-like signalling pathways and metabolism. PMID:26373795

  11. Modeling neutralization of Shiga 2 toxin by A-and B-subunit-specific human monoclonal antibodies.

    PubMed

    Skakauskas, Vladas; Katauskis, Pranas

    2016-06-01

    A mathematical model for Shiga 2 toxin neutralization by A-and B-subunit-specific human monoclonal antibodies initially delivered in the extracellular domain is presented, taking into account toxin and antibodies interaction in the extracellular domain, diffusion of toxin, antibodies, and their reaction products toward the cell, the receptor-mediated toxin and complex composed of toxin and antibody to A-subunit internalization from the extracellular into the intracellular medium and excretion of this complex back to the extracellular environment via recycling endosomal carriers. The retrograde transport of the intact toxin to the endoplasmic reticulum and its anterograde movement back to the vicinity of the plasma membrane with its subsequent exocytotic removal to the extracellular space via the secretory vesicle pathway is also taken into account. The model is composed of a set of coupled PDEs. A mathematical model based on a system of ODEs for Shiga 2 toxin neutralization by antibodies in the absence of cell is also studied. Both PDE and ODE systems are solved numerically. Numerical results are illustrated by figures and discussed. PMID:27155978

  12. A conserved mode of protein recognition and binding in a ParD-ParE toxin-antitoxin complex†

    PubMed Central

    Dalton, Kevin M.; Crosson, Sean

    2010-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems form a ubiquitous class of prokaryotic proteins with functional roles in plasmid inheritance, environmental stress response, and cell development. ParDE-family TA systems are broadly conserved on plasmids and bacterial chromosomes, and have been well characterized as genetic elements that promote stable plasmid inheritance. We present a crystal structure of a chromosomally-encoded ParD-ParE complex from Caulobacter crescentus at 2.6 Å resolution. This TA system forms an α2β2 heterotetramer in the crystal and in solution. The toxin-antitoxin binding interface reveals extensive polar and hydrophobic contacts of ParD antitoxin helices with a conserved recognition and binding groove on the ParE toxin. A cross-species comparison of this complex structure with related toxin structures identified an antitoxin recognition and binding sub-domain that is conserved between distantly-related members of the RelE/ParE toxin superfamily despite low overall primary sequence identity. We further demonstrate that ParD antitoxin is dimeric, stably folded, and largely helical when not bound to ParE toxin. Thus, the paradigmatic model in which antitoxin undergoes a disorder-to-order transition upon toxin binding does not apply to this chromosomal ParD-ParE TA system. PMID:20143871

  13. Development and Validation of Digital Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assays for Ultrasensitive Detection and Quantification of Clostridium difficile Toxins in Stool.

    PubMed

    Song, Linan; Zhao, Mingwei; Duffy, David C; Hansen, Joshua; Shields, Kelsey; Wungjiranirun, Manida; Chen, Xinhua; Xu, Hua; Leffler, Daniel A; Sambol, Susan P; Gerding, Dale N; Kelly, Ciarán P; Pollock, Nira R

    2015-10-01

    The currently available diagnostics for Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) have major limitations. Despite mounting evidence that toxin detection is paramount for diagnosis, conventional toxin immunoassays are insufficiently sensitive and cytotoxicity assays too complex; assays that detect toxigenic organisms (toxigenic culture [TC] and nucleic acid amplification testing [NAAT]) are confounded by asymptomatic colonization by toxigenic C. difficile. We developed ultrasensitive digital enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) for toxins A and B using single-molecule array technology and validated the assays using (i) culture filtrates from a panel of clinical C. difficile isolates and (ii) 149 adult stool specimens already tested routinely by NAAT. The digital ELISAs detected toxins A and B in stool with limits of detection of 0.45 and 1.5 pg/ml, respectively, quantified toxins across a 4-log range, and detected toxins from all clinical strains studied. Using specimens that were negative by cytotoxicity assay/TC/NAAT, clinical cutoffs were set at 29.4 pg/ml (toxin A) and 23.3 pg/ml (toxin B); the resulting clinical specificities were 96% and 98%, respectively. The toxin B digital ELISA was 100% sensitive versus cytotoxicity assay. Twenty-five percent and 22% of the samples positive by NAAT and TC, respectively, were negative by the toxin B digital ELISA, consistent with the presence of organism but minimal or no toxin. The mean toxin levels by digital ELISA were 1.5- to 1.7-fold higher in five patients with CDI-attributable severe outcomes, versus 68 patients without, but this difference was not statistically significant. Ultrasensitive digital ELISAs for the detection and quantification of toxins A and B in stool can provide a rapid and simple tool for the diagnosis of CDI with both high analytical sensitivity and high clinical specificity. PMID:26202120

  14. Marine Toxins That Target Voltage-gated Sodium Channels

    PubMed Central

    Al-Sabi, Ahmed; McArthur, Jeff; Ostroumov, Vitaly; French, Robert J.

    2006-01-01

    Eukaryotic, voltage-gated sodium (NaV) channels are large membrane proteins which underlie generation and propagation of rapid electrical signals in nerve, muscle and heart. Nine different NaV receptor sites, for natural ligands and/or drugs, have been identified, based on functional analyses and site-directed mutagenesis. In the marine ecosystem, numerous toxins have evolved to disrupt NaV channel function, either by inhibition of current flow through the channels, or by modifying the activation and inactivation gating processes by which the channels open and close. These toxins function in their native environment as offensive or defensive weapons in prey capture or deterrence of predators. In composition, they range from organic molecules of varying size and complexity to peptides consisting of ~10–70 amino acids. We review the variety of known NaV-targeted marine toxins, outlining, where known, their sites of interaction with the channel protein and their functional effects. In a number of cases, these natural ligands have the potential applications as drugs in clinical settings, or as models for drug development.

  15. Diversity of peptide toxins from stinging ant venoms.

    PubMed

    Aili, Samira R; Touchard, Axel; Escoubas, Pierre; Padula, Matthew P; Orivel, Jérôme; Dejean, Alain; Nicholson, Graham M

    2014-12-15

    Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of arthropods comprising nearly 13,000 extant species. Sixteen ant subfamilies have individuals that possess a stinger and use their venom for purposes such as a defence against predators, competitors and microbial pathogens, for predation, as well as for social communication. They exhibit a range of activities including antimicrobial, haemolytic, cytolytic, paralytic, insecticidal and pain-producing pharmacologies. While ant venoms are known to be rich in alkaloids and hydrocarbons, ant venoms rich in peptides are becoming more common, yet remain understudied. Recent advances in mass spectrometry techniques have begun to reveal the true complexity of ant venom peptide composition. In the few venoms explored thus far, most peptide toxins appear to occur as small polycationic linear toxins, with antibacterial properties and insecticidal activity. Unlike other venomous animals, a number of ant venoms also contain a range of homodimeric and heterodimeric peptides with one or two interchain disulfide bonds possessing pore-forming, allergenic and paralytic actions. However, ant venoms seem to have only a small number of monomeric disulfide-linked peptides. The present review details the structure and pharmacology of known ant venom peptide toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:25448389

  16. Clostridium perfringens Delta Toxin Is Sequence Related to Beta Toxin, NetB, and Staphylococcus Pore-Forming Toxins, but Shows Functional Differences

    PubMed Central

    Manich, Maria; Knapp, Oliver; Gibert, Maryse; Maier, Elke; Jolivet-Reynaud, Colette; Geny, Blandine; Benz, Roland; Popoff, Michel R.

    2008-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens produces numerous toxins, which are responsible for severe diseases in man and animals. Delta toxin is one of the three hemolysins released by a number of C. perfringens type C and possibly type B strains. Delta toxin was characterized to be cytotoxic for cells expressing the ganglioside GM2 in their membrane. Here we report the genetic characterization of Delta toxin and its pore forming activity in lipid bilayers. Delta toxin consists of 318 amino acids, its 28 N-terminal amino acids corresponding to a signal peptide. The secreted Delta toxin (290 amino acids; 32619 Da) is a basic protein (pI 9.1) which shows a significant homology with C. perfringens Beta toxin (43% identity), with C. perfringens NetB (40% identity) and, to a lesser extent, with Staphylococcus aureus alpha toxin and leukotoxins. Recombinant Delta toxin showed a preference for binding to GM2, in contrast to Beta toxin, which did not bind to gangliosides. It is hemolytic for sheep red blood cells and cytotoxic for HeLa cells. In artificial diphytanoyl phosphatidylcholine membranes, Delta and Beta toxin formed channels. Conductance of the channels formed by Delta toxin, with a value of about 100 pS to more than 1 nS in 1 M KCl and a membrane potential of 20 mV, was higher than those formed by Beta toxin and their distribution was broader. The results of zero-current membrane potential measurements and single channel experiments suggest that Delta toxin forms slightly anion-selective channels, whereas the Beta toxin channels showed a preference for cations under the same conditions. C. perfringens Delta toxin shows a significant sequence homolgy with C. perfringens Beta and NetB toxins, as well as with S. aureus alpha hemolysin and leukotoxins, but exhibits different channel properties in lipid bilayers. In contrast to Beta toxin, Delta toxin recognizes GM2 as receptor and forms anion-selective channels. PMID:19018299

  17. Interneuron Progenitor Transplantation to Treat CNS Dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Chohan, Muhammad O.; Moore, Holly

    2016-01-01

    Due to the inadequacy of endogenous repair mechanisms diseases of the nervous system remain a major challenge to scientists and clinicians. Stem cell based therapy is an exciting and viable strategy that has been shown to ameliorate or even reverse symptoms of CNS dysfunction in preclinical animal models. Of particular importance has been the use of GABAergic interneuron progenitors as a therapeutic strategy. Born in the neurogenic niches of the ventral telencephalon, interneuron progenitors retain their unique capacity to disperse, integrate and induce plasticity in adult host circuitries following transplantation. Here we discuss the potential of interneuron based transplantation strategies as it relates to CNS disease therapeutics. We also discuss mechanisms underlying their therapeutic efficacy and some of the challenges that face the field. PMID:27582692

  18. Progenitor cells for ocular surface regenerative therapy.

    PubMed

    Casaroli-Marano, Ricardo P; Nieto-Nicolau, Nuria; Martínez-Conesa, Eva M

    2013-01-01

    The integrity and normal function of the corneal epithelium are essential for maintaining the cornea's transparency and vision. The existence of a cell population with progenitor characteristics in the limbus maintains a dynamic of constant epithelial repair and renewal. Currently, cell-based therapies for bio-replacement, such as cultured limbal epithelial transplantation and cultured oral mucosal epithelial transplantation, present very encouraging clinical results for treating limbal stem cell deficiencies. Another emerging therapeutic strategy consists of obtaining and implementing human progenitor cells of different origins using tissue engineering methods. The development of cell-based therapies using stem cells, such as human adult mesenchymal stromal cells, represents a significant breakthrough in the treatment of certain eye diseases and also offers a more rational, less invasive and more physiological approach to ocular surface regeneration. PMID:23257987

  19. Cardiac progenitor cells for heart repair

    PubMed Central

    Le, TYL; Chong, JJH

    2016-01-01

    Stem cell therapy is being investigated as an innovative and promising strategy to restore cardiac function in patients with heart failure. Several stem cell populations, including adult (multipotent) stem cells from developed organs and tissues, have been tested for cardiac repair with encouraging clinical and pre-clinical results. The heart has been traditionally considered a post-mitotic organ, however, this view has recently changed with the identification of stem/progenitor cells residing within the adult heart. Given their cardiac developmental origins, these endogenous cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs) may represent better candidates for cardiac cell therapy compared with stem cells from other organs such as the bone marrow and adipose tissue. This brief review will outline current research into CPC populations and their cardiac repair/regenerative potential. PMID:27551540

  20. POPULATION SYNTHESIS AND GAMMA RAY BURST PROGENITORS

    SciTech Connect

    C. L. FREYER

    2000-12-11

    Population synthesis studies of binaries are always limited by a myriad of uncertainties from the poorly understood effects of binary mass transfer and common envelope evolution to the many uncertainties that still remain in stellar evolution. But the importance of these uncertainties depends both upon the objects being studied and the questions asked about these objects. Here I review the most critical uncertainties in the population synthesis of gamma-ray burst progenitors. With a better understanding of these uncertainties, binary population synthesis can become a powerful tool in understanding, and constraining, gamma-ray burst models. In turn, as gamma-ray bursts become more important as cosmological probes, binary population synthesis of gamma-ray burst progenitors becomes an important tool in cosmology.

  1. Human progenitor cells for bone engineering applications.

    PubMed

    de Peppo, G M; Thomsen, P; Karlsson, C; Strehl, R; Lindahl, A; Hyllner, J

    2013-06-01

    In this report, the authors review the human skeleton and the increasing burden of bone deficiencies, the limitations encountered with the current treatments and the opportunities provided by the emerging field of cell-based bone engineering. Special emphasis is placed on different sources of human progenitor cells, as well as their pros and cons in relation to their utilization for the large-scale construction of functional bone-engineered substitutes for clinical applications. It is concluded that, human pluripotent stem cells represent a valuable source for the derivation of progenitor cells, which combine the advantages of both embryonic and adult stem cells, and indeed display high potential for the construction of functional substitutes for bone replacement therapies. PMID:23642054

  2. Roles of Anthrax Toxin Receptor 2 in Anthrax Toxin Membrane Insertion and Pore Formation

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jianjun; Jacquez, Pedro

    2016-01-01

    Interaction between bacterial toxins and cellular surface receptors is an important component of the host-pathogen interaction. Anthrax toxin protective antigen (PA) binds to the cell surface receptor, enters the cell through receptor-mediated endocytosis, and forms a pore on the endosomal membrane that translocates toxin enzymes into the cytosol of the host cell. As the major receptor for anthrax toxin in vivo, anthrax toxin receptor 2 (ANTXR2) plays an essential role in anthrax toxin action by providing the toxin with a high-affinity binding anchor on the cell membrane and a path of entry into the host cell. ANTXR2 also acts as a molecular clamp by shifting the pH threshold of PA pore formation to a more acidic pH range, which prevents premature pore formation at neutral pH before the toxin reaches the designated intracellular location. Most recent studies have suggested that the disulfide bond in the immunoglobulin (Ig)-like domain of ANTXR2 plays an essential role in anthrax toxin action. Here we will review the roles of ANTXR2 in anthrax toxin action, with an emphasis on newly updated knowledge. PMID:26805886

  3. Roles of Anthrax Toxin Receptor 2 in Anthrax Toxin Membrane Insertion and Pore Formation.

    PubMed

    Sun, Jianjun; Jacquez, Pedro

    2016-02-01

    Interaction between bacterial toxins and cellular surface receptors is an important component of the host-pathogen interaction. Anthrax toxin protective antigen (PA) binds to the cell surface receptor, enters the cell through receptor-mediated endocytosis, and forms a pore on the endosomal membrane that translocates toxin enzymes into the cytosol of the host cell. As the major receptor for anthrax toxin in vivo, anthrax toxin receptor 2 (ANTXR2) plays an essential role in anthrax toxin action by providing the toxin with a high-affinity binding anchor on the cell membrane and a path of entry into the host cell. ANTXR2 also acts as a molecular clamp by shifting the pH threshold of PA pore formation to a more acidic pH range, which prevents premature pore formation at neutral pH before the toxin reaches the designated intracellular location. Most recent studies have suggested that the disulfide bond in the immunoglobulin (Ig)-like domain of ANTXR2 plays an essential role in anthrax toxin action. Here we will review the roles of ANTXR2 in anthrax toxin action, with an emphasis on newly updated knowledge. PMID:26805886

  4. Osr1 acts downstream of and interacts synergistically with Six2 to maintain nephron progenitor cells during kidney organogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Jingyue; Liu, Han; Park, Joo-Seop; Lan, Yu; Jiang, Rulang

    2014-01-01

    Mammalian kidney organogenesis involves reciprocal epithelial-mesenchymal interactions that drive iterative cycles of nephron formation. Recent studies have demonstrated that the Six2 transcription factor acts cell autonomously to maintain nephron progenitor cells, whereas canonical Wnt signaling induces nephron differentiation. How Six2 maintains the nephron progenitor cells against Wnt-directed commitment is not well understood, however. We report here that Six2 is required to maintain expression of Osr1, a homolog of the Drosophila odd-skipped zinc-finger transcription factor, in the undifferentiated cap mesenchyme. Tissue-specific inactivation of Osr1 in the cap mesenchyme caused premature depletion of nephron progenitor cells and severe renal hypoplasia. We show that Osr1 and Six2 act synergistically to prevent premature differentiation of the cap mesenchyme. Furthermore, although both Six2 and Osr1 could form protein interaction complexes with TCF proteins, Osr1, but not Six2, enhances TCF interaction with the Groucho family transcriptional co-repressors. Moreover, we demonstrate that loss of Osr1 results in β-catenin/TCF-mediated ectopic activation of Wnt4 enhancer-driven reporter gene expression in the undifferentiated nephron progenitor cells in vivo. Together, these data indicate that Osr1 plays crucial roles in Six2-dependent maintenance of nephron progenitors during mammalian nephrogenesis by stabilizing TCF-Groucho transcriptional repressor complexes to antagonize Wnt-directed nephrogenic differentiation. PMID:24598167

  5. Chondrogenic Progenitor Cells Respond to Cartilage Injury

    PubMed Central

    Choe, Hyeonghun; Zheng, Hongjun; Yu, Yin; Jang, Keewoong; Walter, Morgan W.; Lehman, Abigail D.; Ding, Lei; Buckwalter, Joseph A.; Martin, James A.

    2014-01-01

    Objective Hypocellularity resulting from chondrocyte death in the aftermath of mechanical injury is thought to contribute to posttraumatic osteoarthritis. However, we observed that nonviable areas in cartilage injured by blunt impact were repopulated within 7–14 days by cells that appeared to migrate from the surrounding matrix. The aim of this study was to assess our hypothesis that the migrating cell population included chondrogenic progenitor cells that were drawn to injured cartilage by alarmins. Methods Osteochondral explants obtained from mature cattle were injured by blunt impact or scratching, resulting in localized chondrocyte death. Injured sites were serially imaged by confocal microscopy, and migrating cells were evaluated for chondrogenic progenitor characteristics. Chemotaxis assays were used to measure the responses to chemokines, injury-conditioned medium, dead cell debris, and high mobility group box chromosomal protein 1 (HMGB-1). Results Migrating cells were highly clonogenic and multipotent and expressed markers associated with chondrogenic progenitor cells. Compared with chondrocytes, these cells overexpressed genes involved in proliferation and migration and underexpressed cartilage matrix genes. They were more active than chondrocytes in chemotaxis assays and responded to cell lysates, conditioned medium, and HMGB-1. Glycyrrhizin, a chelator of HMGB-1 and a blocking antibody to receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE), inhibited responses to cell debris and conditioned medium and reduced the numbers of migrating cells on injured explants. Conclusion Injuries that caused chondrocyte death stimulated the emergence and homing of chondrogenic progenitor cells, in part via HMGB-1 release and RAGE-mediated chemotaxis. Their repopulation of the matrix could promote the repair of chondral damage that might otherwise contribute to progressive cartilage loss. PMID:22777600

  6. Multipotent Hematopoietic Progenitors Divide Asymmetrically to Create Progenitors of the Lymphomyeloid and Erythromyeloid Lineages

    PubMed Central

    Görgens, André; Ludwig, Anna-Kristin; Möllmann, Michael; Krawczyk, Adalbert; Dürig, Jan; Hanenberg, Helmut; Horn, Peter A.; Giebel, Bernd

    2014-01-01

    Summary Hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) can self-renew and create committed progenitors, a process supposed to involve asymmetric cell divisions (ACDs). Previously, we had linked the kinetics of CD133 expression with ACDs but failed to detect asymmetric segregation of classical CD133 epitopes on fixed, mitotic HSPCs. Now, by using a novel anti-CD133 antibody (HC7), we confirmed the occurrence of asymmetric CD133 segregation on paraformaldehyde-fixed and living HSPCs. After showing that HC7 binding does not recognizably affect biological features of human HSPCs, we studied ACDs in different HSPC subtypes and determined the developmental potential of arising daughter cells at the single-cell level. Approximately 70% of the HSPCs of the multipotent progenitor (MPP) fraction studied performed ACDs, and about 25% generated lymphoid-primed multipotent progenitor (LMPP) as wells as erythromyeloid progenitor (EMP) daughter cells. Since MPPs hardly created daughter cells maintaining MPP characteristics, our data suggest that under conventional culture conditions, ACDs are lineage instructive rather than self-renewing. PMID:25448068

  7. Combinatorial microenvironmental regulation of liver progenitor differentiation by Notch ligands, TGFβ, and extracellular matrix

    PubMed Central

    Kaylan, Kerim B.; Ermilova, Viktoriya; Yada, Ravi Chandra; Underhill, Gregory H.

    2016-01-01

    The bipotential differentiation of liver progenitor cells underlies liver development and bile duct formation as well as liver regeneration and disease. TGFβ and Notch signaling are known to play important roles in the liver progenitor specification process and tissue morphogenesis. However, the complexity of these signaling pathways and their currently undefined interactions with other microenvironmental factors, including extracellular matrix (ECM), remain barriers to complete mechanistic understanding. Utilizing a series of strategies, including co-cultures and cellular microarrays, we identified distinct contributions of different Notch ligands and ECM proteins in the fate decisions of bipotential mouse embryonic liver (BMEL) progenitor cells. In particular, we demonstrated a cooperative influence of Jagged-1 and TGFβ1 on cholangiocytic differentiation. We established ECM-specific effects using cellular microarrays consisting of 32 distinct combinations of collagen I, collagen III, collagen IV, fibronectin, and laminin. In addition, we demonstrated that exogenous Jagged-1, Delta-like 1, and Delta-like 4 within the cellular microarray format was sufficient for enhancing cholangiocytic differentiation. Further, by combining Notch ligand microarrays with shRNA-based knockdown of Notch ligands, we systematically examined the effects of both cell-extrinsic and cell-intrinsic ligand. Our results highlight the importance of divergent Notch ligand function and combinatorial microenvironmental regulation in liver progenitor fate specification. PMID:27025873

  8. Genetic Tagging During Human Mesoderm Differentiation Reveals Tripotent Lateral Plate Mesodermal Progenitors.

    PubMed

    Chin, Chee Jia; Cooper, Aaron R; Lill, Georgia R; Evseenko, Denis; Zhu, Yuhua; He, Chong Bin; Casero, David; Pellegrini, Matteo; Kohn, Donald B; Crooks, Gay M

    2016-05-01

    Although clonal studies of lineage potential have been extensively applied to organ specific stem and progenitor cells, much less is known about the clonal origins of lineages formed from the germ layers in early embryogenesis. We applied lentiviral tagging followed by vector integration site analysis (VISA) with high-throughput sequencing to investigate the ontogeny of the hematopoietic, endothelial and mesenchymal lineages as they emerge from human embryonic mesoderm. In contrast to studies that have used VISA to track differentiation of self-renewing stem cell clones that amplify significantly over time, we focused on a population of progenitor clones with limited self-renewal capability. Our analyses uncovered the critical influence of sampling on the interpretation of lentiviral tag sharing, particularly among complex populations with minimal clonal duplication. By applying a quantitative framework to estimate the degree of undersampling we revealed the existence of tripotent mesodermal progenitors derived from pluripotent stem cells, and the subsequent bifurcation of their differentiation into bipotent endothelial/hematopoietic or endothelial/mesenchymal progenitors. Stem Cells 2016;34:1239-1250. PMID:26934332

  9. Transient, afferent input-dependent, postnatal niche for neural progenitor cells in the cochlear nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Volkenstein, Stefan; Oshima, Kazuo; Sinkkonen, Saku T.; Corrales, C. Eduardo; Most, Sam P.; Chai, Renjie; Jan, Taha A.; van Amerongen, Renée; Cheng, Alan G.; Heller, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    In the cochlear nucleus (CN), the first central relay of the auditory pathway, the survival of neurons during the first weeks after birth depends on afferent innervation from the cochlea. Although input-dependent neuron survival has been extensively studied in the CN, neurogenesis has not been evaluated as a possible mechanism of postnatal plasticity. Here we show that new neurons are born in the CN during the critical period of postnatal plasticity. Coincidently, we found a population of neural progenitor cells that are controlled by a complex interplay of Wnt, Notch, and TGFβ/BMP signaling, in which low levels of TGFβ/BMP signaling are permissive for progenitor proliferation that is promoted by Wnt and Notch activation. We further show that cells with activated Wnt signaling reside in the CN and that these cells have high propensity for neurosphere formation. Cochlear ablation resulted in diminishment of progenitors and Wnt/β-catenin-active cells, suggesting that the neonatal CN maintains an afferent innervation-dependent population of progenitor cells that display active canonical Wnt signaling. PMID:23940359

  10. TOX3 regulates neural progenitor identity.

    PubMed

    Sahu, Sanjeeb Kumar; Fritz, Alina; Tiwari, Neha; Kovacs, Zsuzsa; Pouya, Alireza; Wüllner, Verena; Bora, Pablo; Schacht, Teresa; Baumgart, Jan; Peron, Sophie; Berninger, Benedikt; Tiwari, Vijay K; Methner, Axel

    2016-07-01

    The human genomic locus for the transcription factor TOX3 has been implicated in susceptibility to restless legs syndrome and breast cancer in genome-wide association studies, but the physiological role of TOX3 remains largely unknown. We found Tox3 to be predominantly expressed in the developing mouse brain with a peak at embryonic day E14 where it co-localizes with the neural stem and progenitor markers Nestin and Sox2 in radial glia of the ventricular zone and intermediate progenitors of the subventricular zone. Tox3 is also expressed in neural progenitor cells obtained from the ganglionic eminence of E15 mice that express Nestin, and it specifically binds the Nestin promoter in chromatin immunoprecipitation assays. In line with this, over-expression of Tox3 increased Nestin promoter activity, which was cooperatively enhanced by treatment with the stem cell self-renewal promoting Notch ligand Jagged and repressed by pharmacological inhibition of Notch signaling. Knockdown of Tox3 in the subventricular zone of E12.5 mouse embryos by in utero electroporation of Tox3 shRNA revealed a reduced Nestin expression and decreased proliferation at E14 and a reduced migration to the cortical plate in E16 embryos in electroporated cells. Together, these results argue for a role of Tox3 in the development of the nervous system. PMID:27080130

  11. Endothelial progenitor cells in hematologic malignancies

    PubMed Central

    Saulle, Ernestina; Castelli, Germana; Pelosi, Elvira

    2016-01-01

    Studies carried out in the last years have improved the understanding of the cellular and molecular mechanisms controlling angiogenesis during adult life in normal and pathological conditions. Some of these studies have led to the identification of some progenitor cells that sustain angiogenesis through indirect, paracrine mechanisms (hematopoietic angiogenic cells) and through direct mechanisms, i.e., through their capacity to generate a progeny of phenotypically and functionally competent endothelial cells [endothelial colony forming cells (ECFCs)]. The contribution of these progenitors to angiogenetic processes under physiological and pathological conditions is intensively investigated. Angiogenetic mechanisms are stimulated in various hematological malignancies, including chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), acute myeloid leukemia (AML), myelodysplastic syndromes and multiple myeloma, resulting in an increased angiogenesis that contributes to disease progression. In some of these conditions there is preliminary evidence that some endothelial cells could derive from the malignant clone, thus leading to the speculation that the leukemic cell derives from the malignant transformation of a hemangioblastic progenitor, i.e., of a cell capable of differentiation to the hematopoietic and to the endothelial cell lineages. Our understanding of the mechanisms underlying increased angiogenesis in these malignancies not only contributed to a better knowledge of the mechanisms responsible for tumor progression, but also offered the way for the discovery of new therapeutic targets. PMID:27583252

  12. EVOLUTION OF PROGENITORS FOR ELECTRON CAPTURE SUPERNOVAE

    SciTech Connect

    Takahashi, Koh; Umeda, Hideyuki; Yoshida, Takashi E-mail: umeda@astron.s.u-tokyo.ac.jp

    2013-07-01

    We provide progenitor models for electron capture supernovae (ECSNe) with detailed evolutionary calculation. We include minor electron capture nuclei using a large nuclear reaction network with updated reaction rates. For electron capture, the Coulomb correction of rates is treated and the contribution from neutron-rich isotopes is taken into account in each nuclear statistical equilibrium (NSE) composition. We calculate the evolution of the most massive super asymptotic giant branch stars and show that these stars undergo off-center carbon burning and form ONe cores at the center. These cores become heavier up to the critical mass of 1.367 M{sub Sun} and keep contracting even after the initiation of O+Ne deflagration. Inclusion of minor electron capture nuclei causes convective URCA cooling during the contraction phase, but the effect on the progenitor evolution is small. On the other hand, electron capture by neutron-rich isotopes in the NSE region has a more significant effect. We discuss the uniqueness of the critical core mass for ECSNe and the effect of wind mass loss on the plausibility of our models for ECSN progenitors.

  13. Endothelial progenitor cells in hematologic malignancies.

    PubMed

    Testa, Ugo; Saulle, Ernestina; Castelli, Germana; Pelosi, Elvira

    2016-01-01

    Studies carried out in the last years have improved the understanding of the cellular and molecular mechanisms controlling angiogenesis during adult life in normal and pathological conditions. Some of these studies have led to the identification of some progenitor cells that sustain angiogenesis through indirect, paracrine mechanisms (hematopoietic angiogenic cells) and through direct mechanisms, i.e., through their capacity to generate a progeny of phenotypically and functionally competent endothelial cells [endothelial colony forming cells (ECFCs)]. The contribution of these progenitors to angiogenetic processes under physiological and pathological conditions is intensively investigated. Angiogenetic mechanisms are stimulated in various hematological malignancies, including chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), acute myeloid leukemia (AML), myelodysplastic syndromes and multiple myeloma, resulting in an increased angiogenesis that contributes to disease progression. In some of these conditions there is preliminary evidence that some endothelial cells could derive from the malignant clone, thus leading to the speculation that the leukemic cell derives from the malignant transformation of a hemangioblastic progenitor, i.e., of a cell capable of differentiation to the hematopoietic and to the endothelial cell lineages. Our understanding of the mechanisms underlying increased angiogenesis in these malignancies not only contributed to a better knowledge of the mechanisms responsible for tumor progression, but also offered the way for the discovery of new therapeutic targets. PMID:27583252

  14. Fungi and fungal toxins as weapons.

    PubMed

    Paterson, R Russell M

    2006-09-01

    Recent aggressive attacks on innocent citizens have resulted in governments increasing security. However, there is a good case for prevention rather than reaction. Bioweapons, mycotoxins, fungal biocontrol agents (FBCA), and even pharmaceuticals contain, or are, toxins and need to be considered in the context of the new paradigm. Is it desirable to discuss such issues? None of the fungi are (a) as toxic as botulinum toxin from Clostridium botulinum, and (b) as dangerous as nuclear weapons. One toxin may be defined as a pharmaceutical and vice versa simply by a small change in concentration or a moiety. Mycotoxins are defined as naturally occurring toxic compounds obtained from fungi. They are the biggest chronic health risk when incorporated into the diet. The current list of fungal toxins as biochemical weapons is small, although awareness is growing of the threats they may pose. T-2 toxin is perhaps the biggest concern. A clear distinction is required between the biological (fungus) and chemical (toxin) aspects of the issue. There is an obvious requirement to be able to trace these fungi and compounds in the environment and to know when concentrations are abnormal. Many FBCA, produce toxins. This paper indicates how to treat mycotoxicosis and decontaminate mycotoxins. There is considerable confusion and inconsistency surrounding this topic which requires assessment in an impartial and scientific manner. PMID:16908123

  15. Cyanobacterial toxins: risk management for health protection.

    PubMed

    Codd, Geoffrey A; Morrison, Louise F; Metcalf, James S

    2005-03-15

    This paper reviews the occurrence and properties of cyanobacterial toxins, with reference to the recognition and management of the human health risks which they may present. Mass populations of toxin-producing cyanobacteria in natural and controlled waterbodies include blooms and scums of planktonic species, and mats and biofilms of benthic species. Toxic cyanobacterial populations have been reported in freshwaters in over 45 countries, and in numerous brackish, coastal, and marine environments. The principal toxigenic genera are listed. Known sources of the families of cyanobacterial toxins (hepato-, neuro-, and cytotoxins, irritants, and gastrointestinal toxins) are briefly discussed. Key procedures in the risk management of cyanobacterial toxins and cells are reviewed, including derivations (where sufficient data are available) of tolerable daily intakes (TDIs) and guideline values (GVs) with reference to the toxins in drinking water, and guideline levels for toxigenic cyanobacteria in bathing waters. Uncertainties and some gaps in knowledge are also discussed, including the importance of exposure media (animal and plant foods), in addition to potable and recreational waters. Finally, we present an outline of steps to develop and implement risk management strategies for cyanobacterial cells and toxins in waterbodies, with recent applications and the integration of Hazard Assessment Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles. PMID:15737680

  16. Cyanobacterial toxins: risk management for health protection

    SciTech Connect

    Codd, Geoffrey A.; Morrison, Louise F.; Metcalf, James S

    2005-03-15

    This paper reviews the occurrence and properties of cyanobacterial toxins, with reference to the recognition and management of the human health risks which they may present. Mass populations of toxin-producing cyanobacteria in natural and controlled waterbodies include blooms and scums of planktonic species, and mats and biofilms of benthic species. Toxic cyanobacterial populations have been reported in freshwaters in over 45 countries, and in numerous brackish, coastal, and marine environments. The principal toxigenic genera are listed. Known sources of the families of cyanobacterial toxins (hepato-, neuro-, and cytotoxins, irritants, and gastrointestinal toxins) are briefly discussed. Key procedures in the risk management of cyanobacterial toxins and cells are reviewed, including derivations (where sufficient data are available) of tolerable daily intakes (TDIs) and guideline values (GVs) with reference to the toxins in drinking water, and guideline levels for toxigenic cyanobacteria in bathing waters. Uncertainties and some gaps in knowledge are also discussed, including the importance of exposure media (animal and plant foods), in addition to potable and recreational waters. Finally, we present an outline of steps to develop and implement risk management strategies for cyanobacterial cells and toxins in waterbodies, with recent applications and the integration of Hazard Assessment Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles.

  17. Therapeutic Use of Botulinum Toxin in Neurorehabilitation

    PubMed Central

    Intiso, Domenico

    2012-01-01

    The botulinum toxins (BTX), type A and type B by blocking vesicle acetylcholine release at neuro-muscular and neuro-secretory junctions can result efficacious therapeutic agents for the treatment of numerous disorders in patients requiring neuro-rehabilitative intervention. Its use for the reduction of focal spasticity following stroke, brain injury, and cerebral palsy is provided. Although the reduction of spasticity is widely demonstrated with BTX type A injection, its impact on the improvement of dexterity and functional outcome remains controversial. The use of BTX for the rehabilitation of children with obstetrical brachial plexus palsy and in treating sialorrhea which can complicate the course of some severe neurological diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Parkinson's disease is also addressed. Adverse events and neutralizing antibodies formation after repeated BTX injections can occur. Since impaired neurological persons can have complex disabling feature, BTX treatment should be viewed as adjunct measure to other rehabilitative strategies that are based on the individual's residual ability and competence and targeted to achieve the best functional recovery. BTX therapy has high cost and transient effect, but its benefits outweigh these disadvantages. Future studies must clarify if this agent alone or adjunctive to other rehabilitative procedures works best on functional outcome. PMID:21941544

  18. Effects of extracellular matrix proteins on the growth of haematopoietic progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Celebi, Betül; Mantovani, Diego; Pineault, Nicolas

    2011-10-01

    Umbilical cord blood (UCB) transplantation and haematological recovery are currently limited by the amount of haematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) present in each unit. HPCs and haematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) normally interact with cells and extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins present within the endosteal and vascular niches. Hence, we investigated whether coating of culture surfaces with ECM proteins normally present in the marrow microenvironment could benefit the ex vivo expansion of HPCs. Towards this, collagen types I and IV (COL I and IV), laminin (LN) and fibronectin (FN) were tested individually or as component of two ECM-mix complexes. Individually, ECM proteins had both common and unique properties on the growth and differentiation of UCB CD34+ cells; some ECM proteins favoured the differentiation of some lineages over that of others (e.g. FN for erythroids), some the expansion of HPCs (e.g. LN and megakaryocyte (MK) progenitor) while others had less effects. Next, two ECM-mix complexes were tested; the first one contained all four ECM proteins (4ECMp), while the second 'basement membrane-like structure' was without COL I (3ECMp). Removal of COL I led to strong reductions in cell growth and HPCs expansion. Interestingly, the 4ECMp-mix complex reproducibly increased CD34+ (1.3-fold) and CD41+ (1.2-fold) cell expansions at day 6 (P < 0.05) versus control, and induced greater myeloid progenitor expansion (P < 0.05) than 3ECMp. In conclusion, these results suggest that optimization of BM ECM protein complexes could provide a better environment for the ex vivo expansion of haematopoietic progenitors than individual ECM protein. PMID:21931196

  19. Clostridium perfringens type A–E toxin plasmids

    PubMed Central

    Freedman, John C.; Theoret, James R.; Wisniewski, Jessica A.; Uzal, Francisco A.; Rood, Julian I.; McClane, Bruce A.

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens relies upon plasmid-encoded toxin genes to cause intestinal infections. These toxin genes are associated with insertion sequences that may facilitate their mobilization and transfer, giving rise to new toxin plasmids with common backbones. Most toxin plasmids carry a transfer of clostridial plasmids locus mediating conjugation, which likely explains the presence of similar toxin plasmids in otherwise unrelated C. perfringens strains. The association of many toxin genes with insertion sequences and conjugative plasmids provides virulence flexibility when causing intestinal infections. However, incompatibility issues apparently limit the number of toxin plasmids maintained by a single cell. PMID:25283728

  20. Cholera toxin-like toxin released by Salmonella species in the presence of mitomycin C.

    PubMed

    Molina, N C; Peterson, J W

    1980-10-01

    Several serotypes of Salmonella were shown to release increased amounts of a cholera toxin-like toxin during culture in vitro with mitomycin C (MTC). Filter-sterilized culture supernatants containing the toxin caused elongation of Chinese hamster ovary cells, which could be blocked by heating the supernatants at 100 degrees C for 15 min or by adding mixed gangliosides or monospecific cholera antitoxin. When MTC was not added to the Salmonella cultures, little or no toxin was detected in crude, unconcentrated culture supernatants. Optimal production of toxin was observed in the presence of 0.5 micrograms of MTC per ml in shake flask cultures of Casamino Acids-yeast extract medium, Syncase, or peptone saline at 37 degrees C. Meat infusion media (heart infusion and brain heart infusion) plus MTC resulted in poor toxin yield. Culture filtrates frequently could be diluted 1:8 and still result in elongation of Chinese hamster ovary cells. PMID:7002788

  1. Investigating the role of solanapyrone toxins in Ascochyta blight using toxin-deficient mutants of Asochyta rabiei

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ascochyta rabiei, the causal agent of Ascochyta blight of chickpea, produces solanapyrone toxins (solanapyrone A, B and C). However, very little is known about the genetics of toxin production and the role of the toxins in pathogenesis. Generating mutants deficient in the toxin biosynthesis would p...

  2. Stromal vascular progenitors in adult human adipose tissue

    PubMed Central

    Zimmerlin, Ludovic; Donnenberg, Vera S.; Pfeifer, Melanie E.; Meyer, E. Michael; Péault, Bruno; Rubin, J. Peter; Donnenberg, Albert D.

    2014-01-01

    Background The in vivo progenitor of culture-expanded mesenchymal-like adipose-derived stem cells (ADSC) remains elusive, owing in part to the complex organization of stromal cells surrounding the small vessels, and the rapidity with which adipose stromal vascular cells adopt a mesenchymal phenotype in vitro. Methods Immunohistostaining of intact adipose tissue was used to identify 3 markers (CD31, CD34, CD146) which together unambiguously discriminate histologically distinct inner and outer rings of vessel-associated stromal cells, as well as capillary and small vessel endothelial cells. These markers were used in multiparameter flow cytometry in conjunction with stem/progenitor markers (CD90, CD117) to further characterize stromal vascular fraction (SVF) subpopulations. Two mesenchymal and two endothelial populations were isolated by high speed flow cytometric sorting, expanded in short term culture and tested for adipogenesis. Results The inner layer of stromal cells in contact with small vessel endothelium (pericytes) was CD146+/α-SMA+/CD90±/CD34−/CD31−; the outer adventitial stromal ring (designated supra adventitial-adipose stromal cells, SA-ASC) was CD146−/α-SMA−/CD90+/CD34+/CD31−. Capillary endothelial cells were CD31+/CD34+/CD90+ (endothelial progenitor), while small vessel endothelium was CD31+/CD34−/CD90− (endothelial mature). Flow cytometry confirmed these expression patterns and revealed a CD146+/CD90+/CD34+/CD31− pericyte subset that may be transitional between pericytes and SA-ASC. Pericytes had the most potent adipogenic potential, followed by the more numerous SA-ASC. Endothelial populations had significantly reduced adipogenic potential compared to unsorted expanded SVF cells. Conclusions In adipose tissue perivascular stromal cells are organized in two discrete layers, the innermost consisting of CD146+/CD34− pericytes, and the outermost of CD146−/CD34+ SA-ASC, both of which have adipogenic potential in culture. A CD146+/CD

  3. Toxic shock syndrome toxin-1, not α-toxin, mediated Bundaberg fatalities.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Elizabeth A; Merriman, Joseph A; Schlievert, Patrick M

    2015-12-01

    The 1928 Bundaberg disaster is one of the greatest vaccine tragedies in history. Of 21 children immunized with a diphtheria toxin-antitoxin preparation contaminated with Staphylococcus aureus, 18 developed life-threatening disease and 12 died within 48  h. Historically, the deaths have been attributed to α-toxin, a secreted cytotoxin produced by most S. aureus strains, yet the ability of the Bundaberg contaminant microbe to produce the toxin has never been verified. For the first time, the ability of the original strain to produce α-toxin and other virulence factors is investigated. The study investigates the genetic and regulatory loci mediating α-toxin expression by PCR and assesses production of the cytotoxin in vitro using an erythrocyte haemolysis assay. This analysis is extended to other secreted virulence factors produced by the strain, and their sufficiency to cause lethality in New Zealand white rabbits is determined. Although the strain possesses a wild-type allele for α-toxin, it must have a defective regulatory system, which is responsible for the strain's minimal α-toxin production. The strain encodes and produces staphylococcal superantigens, including toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1), which is sufficient to cause lethality in patients. The findings cast doubt on the belief that α-toxin is the major virulence factor responsible for the Bundaberg fatalities and point to the superantigen TSST-1 as the cause of the disaster. PMID:26432699

  4. RasGRP1 and RasGRP3 Are Required for Efficient Generation of Early Thymic Progenitors.

    PubMed

    Golec, Dominic P; Henao Caviedes, Laura M; Baldwin, Troy A

    2016-09-01

    T cell development is dependent on the migration of progenitor cells from the bone marrow to the thymus. Upon reaching the thymus, progenitors undergo a complex developmental program that requires inputs from various highly conserved signaling pathways including the Notch and Wnt pathways. To date, Ras signaling has not been implicated in the very earliest stages of T cell differentiation, but members of a family of Ras activators called RasGRPs have been shown to be involved at multiple stages of T cell development. We examined early T cell development in mice lacking RasGRP1, RasGRP3, and RasGRPs 1 and 3. We report that RasGRP1- and RasGRP3-deficient thymi show significantly reduced numbers of early thymic progenitors (ETPs) relative to wild type thymi. Furthermore, RasGRP1/3 double-deficient thymi show significant reductions in ETP numbers compared with either RasGRP1 or RasGRP3 single-deficient thymi, suggesting that both RasGRP1 and RasGRP3 regulate the generation of ETPs. In addition, competitive bone marrow chimera experiments reveal that RasGRP1/3 double-deficient progenitors intrinsically generate ETPs less efficiently than wild type progenitors. Finally, RasGRP1/3-deficient progenitors show impaired migration toward the CCR9 ligand, CCL25, suggesting that RasGRP1 and RasGRP3 may regulate progenitor entry into the thymus through a CCR9-dependent mechanism. These data demonstrate that, in addition to Notch and Wnt, the highly conserved Ras pathway is critical for the earliest stages of T cell development and further highlight the importance of Ras signaling during thymocyte maturation. PMID:27465532

  5. Filamin a regulates neural progenitor proliferation and cortical size through Wee1-dependent Cdk1 phosphorylation.

    PubMed

    Lian, Gewei; Lu, Jie; Hu, Jianjun; Zhang, Jingping; Cross, Sally H; Ferland, Russell J; Sheen, Volney L

    2012-05-30

    Cytoskeleton-associated proteins play key roles not only in regulating cell morphology and migration but also in proliferation. Mutations in the cytoskeleton-associated gene filamin A (FlnA) cause the human disorder periventricular heterotopia (PH). PH is a disorder of neural stem cell development that is characterized by disruption of progenitors along the ventricular epithelium and subsequent formation of ectopic neuronal nodules. FlnA-dependent regulation of cytoskeletal dynamics is thought to direct neural progenitor migration and proliferation. Here we show that embryonic FlnA-null mice exhibited a reduction in brain size and decline in neural progenitor numbers over time. The drop in the progenitor population was not attributable to cell death or changes in premature differentiation, but to prolonged cell cycle duration. Suppression of FlnA led to prolongation of the entire cell cycle length, principally in M phase. FlnA loss impaired degradation of cyclin B1-related proteins, thereby delaying the onset and progression through mitosis. We found that the cdk1 kinase Wee1 bound FlnA, demonstrated increased expression levels after loss of FlnA function, and was associated with increased phosphorylation of cdk1. Phosphorylation of cdk1 inhibited activation of the anaphase promoting complex degradation system, which was responsible for cyclin B1 degradation and progression through mitosis. Collectively, our results demonstrate a molecular mechanism whereby FlnA loss impaired G2 to M phase entry, leading to cell cycle prolongation, compromised neural progenitor proliferation, and reduced brain size. PMID:22649246

  6. Brain tumor specifies intermediate progenitor cell identity by attenuating β-catenin/Armadillo activity

    PubMed Central

    Komori, Hideyuki; Xiao, Qi; McCartney, Brooke M.; Lee, Cheng-Yu

    2014-01-01

    During asymmetric stem cell division, both the daughter stem cell and the presumptive intermediate progenitor cell inherit cytoplasm from their parental stem cell. Thus, proper specification of intermediate progenitor cell identity requires an efficient mechanism to rapidly extinguish the activity of self-renewal factors, but the mechanisms remain unknown in most stem cell lineages. During asymmetric division of a type II neural stem cell (neuroblast) in the Drosophila larval brain, the Brain tumor (Brat) protein segregates unequally into the immature intermediate neural progenitor (INP), where it specifies INP identity by attenuating the function of the self-renewal factor Klumpfuss (Klu), but the mechanisms are not understood. Here, we report that Brat specifies INP identity through its N-terminal B-boxes via a novel mechanism that is independent of asymmetric protein segregation. Brat-mediated specification of INP identity is critically dependent on the function of the Wnt destruction complex, which attenuates the activity of β-catenin/Armadillo (Arm) in immature INPs. Aberrantly increasing Arm activity in immature INPs further exacerbates the defects in the specification of INP identity and enhances the supernumerary neuroblast mutant phenotype in brat mutant brains. By contrast, reducing Arm activity in immature INPs suppresses supernumerary neuroblast formation in brat mutant brains. Finally, reducing Arm activity also strongly suppresses supernumerary neuroblasts induced by overexpression of klu. Thus, the Brat-dependent mechanism extinguishes the function of the self-renewal factor Klu in the presumptive intermediate progenitor cell by attenuating Arm activity, balancing stem cell maintenance and progenitor cell specification. PMID:24257623

  7. Clostridium difficile and C. difficile Toxin Testing

    MedlinePlus

    ... C diff antigen; GDH Formal name: Clostridium difficile Culture; C. difficile Toxin, A and B; C. difficile Cytotoxin Assay; Glutamate Dehydrogenase Test Related tests: Stool Culture ; O&P At a Glance Test Sample The ...

  8. INVESTIGATOIN OF CYANOBACTERIA TOXINS IN WATER

    EPA Science Inventory

    Introduction:

    Approximately 80 alkaloid and cyclic peptide toxins produced by various freshwater and marine cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) have been identified and their structures determined. The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency has identified two neurotoxin alkalo...

  9. [Treatment of wrinkles with botulinum toxin].

    PubMed

    Lanzl, I; Merté, R-L

    2007-09-01

    The use of botulinum toxin A for the treatment of wrinkles is increasing. Botulinum toxin A inhibits exocytosis of acetylcholine from 3 to 12 months, depending on the target tissue. Low-dose botulinum toxin A is used to smooth hyperkinetic facial lines. This is especially successful in the upper facial parts, since the target muscles (procerus, corrugator supracilii, frontalis, orbicularis oculi) all directly overlie the osseous structures of the face. This is not the case for the lower facial parts, and more side effects are encountered when treating, for example, wrinkles around the mouth. Contraindications to the use of botulinum toxin A are diseases affecting neuromuscular signal transduction, allergic reactions to components of the solution, therapy with aminoglycosides or acetylsalicylic acid prior to treatment, infections in the planned treatment area, and pregnancy and lactation. Alternative and complementary treatments include erbium-YAG or CO2 laser, as well as augmentation and surgical plastic procedures. PMID:17823803

  10. Bacterial Toxins as Pathogen Weapons Against Phagocytes

    PubMed Central

    do Vale, Ana; Cabanes, Didier; Sousa, Sandra

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial toxins are virulence factors that manipulate host cell functions and take over the control of vital processes of living organisms to favor microbial infection. Some toxins directly target innate immune cells, thereby annihilating a major branch of the host immune response. In this review we will focus on bacterial toxins that act from the extracellular milieu and hinder the function of macrophages and neutrophils. In particular, we will concentrate on toxins from Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria that manipulate cell signaling or induce cell death by either imposing direct damage to the host cells cytoplasmic membrane or enzymatically modifying key eukaryotic targets. Outcomes regarding pathogen dissemination, host damage and disease progression will be discussed. PMID:26870008

  11. Nanoanalysis of the arthropod neuro-toxins

    PubMed Central

    Nakajima, Terumi

    2006-01-01

    Many kinds of venomous principles modulate physiological responses of mammalian signal transduction systems, on which they act selectively as enhancers, inhibitors or some other kind of effectors. These toxins become useful tools for physiological research. We have employed and characterized paralyzing toxins from the venom of spiders, insects and scorpions with a limited supply. We have developed rapid and sensitive mass spectrometric technology and applied for the identification of these toxins. Venom profiles are screened by MALDI-TOF fingerprinting analysis prior to purification of venomous components, then marked target toxins of small molecular mass (1000–5000) are characterized directly by means of mass spectrometric techniques such as Frit-FAB MS/MS, CID/PSD-TOF MS, Capil.-HPLC/Q-TOF MS/MS etc. PMID:25792792

  12. How Parkinsonian Toxins Dysregulate the Autophagy Machinery

    PubMed Central

    Dagda, Ruben K.; Das Banerjee, Tania; Janda, Elzbieta

    2013-01-01

    Since their discovery, Parkinsonian toxins (6-hydroxydopamine, MPP+, paraquat, and rotenone) have been widely employed as in vivo and in vitro chemical models of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Alterations in mitochondrial homeostasis, protein quality control pathways, and more recently, autophagy/mitophagy have been implicated in neurotoxin models of PD. Here, we highlight the molecular mechanisms by which different PD toxins dysregulate autophagy/mitophagy and how alterations of these pathways play beneficial or detrimental roles in dopamine neurons. The convergent and divergent effects of PD toxins on mitochondrial function and autophagy/mitophagy are also discussed in this review. Furthermore, we propose new diagnostic tools and discuss how pharmacological modulators of autophagy/mitophagy can be developed as disease-modifying treatments for PD. Finally, we discuss the critical need to identify endogenous and synthetic forms of PD toxins and develop efficient health preventive programs to mitigate the risk of developing PD. PMID:24217228

  13. [Botulinum toxin in disabling dermatological diseases].

    PubMed

    Messikh, R; Atallah, L; Aubin, F; Humbert, P

    2009-05-01

    Botulinum toxin could represent nowadays a new treatment modality especially for cutaneous conditions in course of which conventional treatments remain unsuccessful. Besides palmar and plantar hyperhidrosis, botulinum toxin has demonstrated efficacy in different conditions associated with hyperhidrosis, such as dyshidrosis, multiple eccrine hidrocystomas, hidradenitis suppurativa, Frey syndrome, but also in different conditions worsened by hyperhidrosis such as Hailey-Hailey disease, Darier disease, inversed psoriasis, aquagenic palmoplantar keratoderma, pachyonychia congenital. Moreover, different cutaneous conditions associated with sensitive disorders and/or neurological involvements could benefit from botulinum toxin, for example anal fissures, leg ulcers, lichen simplex, notalgia paresthetica, vestibulitis. Endly, a case of cutis laxa was described where the patient was improved by cutaneous injections of botulinum toxin. PMID:19576479

  14. Hemolytic anemia caused by chemicals and toxins

    MedlinePlus

    Anemia - hemolytic - caused by chemicals or toxins ... Possible substances that can cause hemolytic anemia include: Anti-malaria drugs (quinine compounds) Arsenic Dapsone Intravenous water infusion (not half-normal saline or normal saline) Metals (chromium/chromates, ...

  15. Defining human dendritic cell progenitors by multiparametric flow cytometry.

    PubMed

    Breton, Gaëlle; Lee, Jaeyop; Liu, Kang; Nussenzweig, Michel C

    2015-09-01

    Human dendritic cells (DCs) develop from progressively restricted bone marrow (BM) progenitors: these progenitor cells include granulocyte, monocyte and DC progenitor (GMDP) cells; monocyte and DC progenitor (MDP) cells; and common DC progenitor (CDP) and DC precursor (pre-DC) cells. These four DC progenitors can be defined on the basis of the expression of surface markers such as CD34 and hematopoietin receptors. In this protocol, we describe five multiparametric flow cytometry panels that can be used as a tool (i) to simultaneously detect or phenotype the four DC progenitors, (ii) to isolate DC progenitors to enable in vitro differentiation or (iii) to assess the in vitro differentiation and proliferation of DC progenitors. The entire procedure from isolation of cells to flow cytometry can be completed in 3-7 h. This protocol provides optimized antibody panels, as well as gating strategies, for immunostaining of BM and cord blood specimens to study human DC hematopoiesis in health, disease and vaccine settings. PMID:26292072

  16. Transformation of erythroid progenitors by viral and cellular tyrosine kinases.

    PubMed

    Beug, H; Schroeder, C; Wessely, O; Deiner, E; Meyer, S; Ischenko, I D; Hayman, M J

    1995-08-01

    Recently, two different normal avian erythroid progenitors were described. They differ in the receptor tyrosine kinases they express and in their ability to undergo self-renewal in culture. A common progenitor, termed stem cell factor (SCF) progenitor, expresses the receptor for avian SCF c-Kit, and undergoes short-term self-renewal when grown in the presence of avian SCF. A second progenitor, referred to as SCF/transforming growth factor-alpha progenitor, coexpresses c-Kit and the avian epidermal growth factor receptor homologue c-ErbB. These progenitors undergo sustained self-renewal when grown in the presence of transforming growth factor-alpha plus estradiol. The phenotype of the normal SCF/transforming growth factor-alpha progenitors closely corresponded to that of erythroid cells transformed by the tyrosine kinase oncogenes v-erbB or v-sea. This suggested that these cells, but not the SCF progenitors, would be the target cells for erythroblast transformation by these oncogenes. However, we demonstrate that both progenitor cells can be transformed by the v-erbB and v-sea oncogenes and also by the ligand-activated proto-oncogene product c-ErbB. We conclude that the target cell specificity of certain tyrosine kinase oncoproteins for erythroid cells is a reflection of their ability to provide signals for self-renewal that normally emanate from the endogenous c-ErbB protein. PMID:8547228

  17. Defining human dendritic cell progenitors by multiparametric flow cytometry

    PubMed Central

    Breton, Gaëlle; Lee, Jaeyop; Liu, Kang; Nussenzweig, Michel C

    2015-01-01

    Human dendritic cells (DCs) develop from progressively restricted bone marrow (BM) progenitors: these progenitor cells include granulocyte, monocyte and DC progenitor (GMDP) cells; monocyte and DC progenitor (MDP) cells; and common DC progenitor (CDP) and DC precursor (pre-DC) cells. These four DC progenitors can be defined on the basis of the expression of surface markers such as CD34 and hematopoietin receptors. In this protocol, we describe five multiparametric flow cytometry panels that can be used as a tool (i) to simultaneously detect or phenotype the four DC progenitors, (ii) to isolate DC progenitors to enable in vitro differentiation or (iii) to assess the in vitro differentiation and proliferation of DC progenitors. The entire procedure from isolation of cells to flow cytometry can be completed in 3–7 h. This protocol provides optimized antibody panels, as well as gating strategies, for immunostaining of BM and cord blood specimens to study human DC hematopoiesis in health, disease and vaccine settings. PMID:26292072

  18. Nutritional regulation of stem and progenitor cells in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Shim, Jiwon; Gururaja-Rao, Shubha; Banerjee, Utpal

    2013-01-01

    Stem cells and their progenitors are maintained within a microenvironment, termed the niche, through local cell-cell communication. Systemic signals originating outside the niche also affect stem cell and progenitor behavior. This review summarizes studies that pertain to nutritional effects on stem and progenitor cell maintenance and proliferation in Drosophila. Multiple tissue types are discussed that utilize the insulin-related signaling pathway to convey nutritional information either directly to these progenitors or via other cell types within the niche. The concept of systemic control of these cell types is not limited to Drosophila and may be functional in vertebrate systems, including mammals. PMID:24255094

  19. Cell culture: Progenitor cells from human brain after death

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palmer, Theo D.; Schwartz, Philip H.; Taupin, Philippe; Kaspar, Brian; Stein, Stuart A.; Gage, Fred H.

    2001-05-01

    Culturing neural progenitor cells from the adult rodent brain has become routine and is also possible from human fetal tissue, but expansion of these cells from postnatal and adult human tissue, although preferred for ethical reasons, has encountered problems. Here we describe the isolation and successful propagation of neural progenitor cells from human postmortem tissues and surgical specimens. Although the relative therapeutic merits of adult and fetal progenitor cells still need to be assessed, our results may extend the application of these progenitor cells in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  20. Effects of Substrate and Co-Culture on Neural Progenitor Cell Differentiation

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, Erin Boote

    2008-01-01

    In recent years the study of stem and progenitor cells has moved to the forefront of research. Since the isolation of human hematopoietic stem cells in 1988 and the subsequent discovery of a self renewing population of multipotent cells in many tissues, many researchers have envisioned a better understanding of development and potential clinical usage in intractable diseases. Both these goals, however, depend on a solid understanding of the intracellular and extracellular forces that cause stem cells to differentiate to a specific cell fate. Many diseases of large scale cell loss have been suggested as candidates for stem cell based treatments. It is proposed that replacing the function of the damaged or defective cells by specific differentiation of stem or progenitor cells could treat the disease. Before cells can be directed to specific lineages, the mechanisms of differentiation must be better understood. Differentiation in vivo is an intensively complex system that is difficult to study. The goal of this research is to develop further understanding of the effects of soluble and extracellular matrix (ECM) cues on the differentiation of neural progenitor cells with the use of a simplified in vitro culture system. Specific research objectives are to study the differentiation of neural progenitor cells in response to astrocyte conditioned medium and protein substrate composition and concentration. In an effort to reveal the mechanism of the conditioned medium interaction, a test for the presence of a feedback loop between progenitor cells and astrocytes is presented along with an examination of conditioned medium storage temperature, which can reveal enzymatic dependencies. An examination of protein substrate composition and concentration will help to reveal the role of any ECM interactions on differentiation. This thesis is organized into a literature review covering recent advances in use of external modulators of differentiation such as surface coatings, co

  1. Botulinum toxin. From poison to medicine.

    PubMed Central

    Davis, L E

    1993-01-01

    Although thousands of people in the world each year continue to be poisoned with botulinum toxin-food-borne, infantile, or wound botulism-the neurotoxin is now sufficiently understood to allow it to be used as a medicinal agent to paralyze specific muscles, giving temporary symptomatic relief from a variety of dystonic neurologic disorders. I review some of the epidemiologic, clinical, and pathophysiologic aspects of botulinum toxin and how the neurotoxin may act as a poison or a medicine. Images PMID:8470380

  2. Purification and characterization of Clostridium difficile toxin.

    PubMed Central

    Rolfe, R D; Finegold, S M

    1979-01-01

    Recent evidence indicates that toxigenic Clostridium difficile strains are a major cause of antimicrobial-associated ileocecitis in laboratory animals and pseudomembranous colitis in humans. C. difficile ATCC 9689 was cultivated in a synthetic medium to which 3% ultrafiltrated proteose peptone was added. Purification of the toxin from broth filtrate was accomplished through ultrafiltration (100,000 nominal-molecular-weight-limit membrane), precipitation with 75% (NH4)2SO4, and chromatographic separation using Bio-Gel A 5m followed by ion-exchange chromatography on a diethylaminoethyl-Sephadex A-25 column. The purified toxin displayed only one band on polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, and approximately 170 pg was cytopathic for human amnion cells. The isolated toxin was neutralized by Clostridium sordelli antitoxin, heat labile (56 degrees C for 30 min), and inactivated at pH 4 and 9; it had an isoelectric point of 5.0, increased vascular permeability in rabbits, and caused ileocecitis in hamsters when injected intracecally. Treatment of the toxin with trypsin, chymotrypsin, pronase, amylase, or ethylmercurithiosalicylate caused inactivation, whereas lipase had no effect. By gel filtration, its molecular weight was estimated as 530,000. Upon reduction and denaturation, the toxin dissociated into 185,000- and 50,000-molecular-weight components, as determined by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Extensive dissociation yielded only the 50,000-molecular-weight component. The toxin appears to be protoplasmic and is released into the surrounding environment upon autolysis of the cells. Attempts to correlate specific enzymatic activity with the toxin have been unsuccessful. These studies will help delineate the role of C. difficile toxin in antimicrobial-associated colitis and diarrhea. Images PMID:478634

  3. Toxicological Perspective on Climate Change: Aquatic Toxins.

    PubMed

    Botana, Luis M

    2016-04-18

    In recent years, our group and several others have been describing the presence of new, not previously reported, toxins of high toxicity in vectors that may reach the human food chain. These include tetrodotoxin in gastropods in the South of Europe, ciguatoxin in fish in the South of Spain, palytoxin in mussels in the Mediterranean Sea, pinnatoxin all over Europe, and okadaic acid in the south of the U.S. There seem to be new marine toxins appearing in areas that are heavy producers of seafood, and this is a cause of concern as most of these new toxins are not included in current legislation and monitoring programs. Along with the new toxins, new chemical analogues are being reported. The same phenomenom is being recorded in freshwater toxins, such as the wide appearance of cylindrospermopsin and the large worldwide increase of microcystin. The problem that this phenomenon, which may be linked to climate warming, poses for toxicologists is very important not only because there is a lack of chronic studies and an incomplete comprehension of the mechanism driving the production of these toxins but also because the lack of a legal framework for them allows many of these toxins to reach the market. In some cases, it is very difficult to control these toxins because there are not enough standards available, they are not always certified, and there is an insufficient understanding of the toxic equivalency factors of the different analogues in each group. All of these factors have been revealed and grouped through the massive increase in the use of LC-MS as a monitoring tool, legally demanded, creating more toxicological problems. PMID:26958981

  4. Dermatitis from purified sea algae toxin (debromoaplysiatoxin).

    PubMed

    Solomon, A E; Stoughton, R B

    1978-09-01

    Cutaneous inflammation was induced by debromoaplysiatoxin, a purified toxin extracted from Lyngbya majuscula Gomont. This alga causes a seaweed dermatitis that occurs in persons who have swum off the coast of Oahu in Hawaii. By topical application, the toxin was found to produce an irritant pustular folliculitis in humans and to cause a severe cutaneous inflammatory reaction in the rabbit and in hairless mice. PMID:686747

  5. Susceptibility to anthrax lethal toxin-induced rat death is controlled by a single chromosome 10 locus that includes rNlrp1.

    PubMed

    Newman, Zachary L; Printz, Morton P; Liu, Shihui; Crown, Devorah; Breen, Laura; Miller-Randolph, Sharmina; Flodman, Pamela; Leppla, Stephen H; Moayeri, Mahtab

    2010-05-01

    Anthrax lethal toxin (LT) is a bipartite protease-containing toxin and a key virulence determinant of Bacillus anthracis. In mice, LT causes the rapid lysis of macrophages isolated from certain inbred strains, but the correlation between murine macrophage sensitivity and mouse strain susceptibility to toxin challenge is poor. In rats, LT induces a rapid death in as little as 37 minutes through unknown mechanisms. We used a recombinant inbred (RI) rat panel of 19 strains generated from LT-sensitive and LT-resistant progenitors to map LT sensitivity in rats to a locus on chromosome 10 that includes the inflammasome NOD-like receptor (NLR) sensor, Nlrp1. This gene is the closest rat homolog of mouse Nlrp1b, which was previously shown to control murine macrophage sensitivity to LT. An absolute correlation between in vitro macrophage sensitivity to LT-induced lysis and animal susceptibility to the toxin was found for the 19 RI strains and 12 additional rat strains. Sequencing Nlrp1 from these strains identified five polymorphic alleles. Polymorphisms within the N-terminal 100 amino acids of the Nlrp1 protein were perfectly correlated with LT sensitivity. These data suggest that toxin-mediated lethality in rats as well as macrophage sensitivity in this animal model are controlled by a single locus on chromosome 10 that is likely to be the inflammasome NLR sensor, Nlrp1. PMID:20502689

  6. Sea Anemone Toxins Affecting Potassium Channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diochot, Sylvie; Lazdunski, Michel

    The great diversity of K+ channels and their wide distribution in many tissues are associated with important functions in cardiac and neuronal excitability that are now better understood thanks to the discovery of animal toxins. During the past few decades, sea anemones have provided a variety of toxins acting on voltage-sensitive sodium and, more recently, potassium channels. Currently there are three major structural groups of sea anemone K+ channel (SAK) toxins that have been characterized. Radioligand binding and electrophysiological experiments revealed that each group contains peptides displaying selective activities for different subfamilies of K+ channels. Short (35-37 amino acids) peptides in the group I display pore blocking effects on Kv1 channels. Molecular interactions of SAK-I toxins, important for activity and binding on Kv1 channels, implicate a spot of three conserved amino acid residues (Ser, Lys, Tyr) surrounded by other less conserved residues. Long (58-59 amino acids) SAK-II peptides display both enzymatic and K+ channel inhibitory activities. Medium size (42-43 amino acid) SAK-III peptides are gating modifiers which interact either with cardiac HERG or Kv3 channels by altering their voltage-dependent properties. SAK-III toxins bind to the S3C region in the outer vestibule of Kv channels. Sea anemones have proven to be a rich source of pharmacological tools, and some of the SAK toxins are now useful drugs for the diagnosis and treatment of autoimmune diseases.

  7. Toxin-Antitoxin Systems of Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed

    Schuster, Christopher F; Bertram, Ralph

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are small genetic elements found in the majority of prokaryotes. They encode toxin proteins that interfere with vital cellular functions and are counteracted by antitoxins. Dependent on the chemical nature of the antitoxins (protein or RNA) and how they control the activity of the toxin, TA systems are currently divided into six different types. Genes comprising the TA types I, II and III have been identified in Staphylococcus aureus. MazF, the toxin of the mazEF locus is a sequence-specific RNase that cleaves a number of transcripts, including those encoding pathogenicity factors. Two yefM-yoeB paralogs represent two independent, but auto-regulated TA systems that give rise to ribosome-dependent RNases. In addition, omega/epsilon/zeta constitutes a tripartite TA system that supposedly plays a role in the stabilization of resistance factors. The SprA1/SprA1AS and SprF1/SprG1 systems are post-transcriptionally regulated by RNA antitoxins and encode small membrane damaging proteins. TA systems controlled by interaction between toxin protein and antitoxin RNA have been identified in S. aureus in silico, but not yet experimentally proven. A closer inspection of possible links between TA systems and S. aureus pathophysiology will reveal, if these genetic loci may represent druggable targets. The modification of a staphylococcal TA toxin to a cyclopeptide antibiotic highlights the potential of TA systems as rather untapped sources of drug discovery. PMID:27164142

  8. Toxin-Antitoxin Systems of Staphylococcus aureus

    PubMed Central

    Schuster, Christopher F.; Bertram, Ralph

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are small genetic elements found in the majority of prokaryotes. They encode toxin proteins that interfere with vital cellular functions and are counteracted by antitoxins. Dependent on the chemical nature of the antitoxins (protein or RNA) and how they control the activity of the toxin, TA systems are currently divided into six different types. Genes comprising the TA types I, II and III have been identified in Staphylococcus aureus. MazF, the toxin of the mazEF locus is a sequence-specific RNase that cleaves a number of transcripts, including those encoding pathogenicity factors. Two yefM-yoeB paralogs represent two independent, but auto-regulated TA systems that give rise to ribosome-dependent RNases. In addition, omega/epsilon/zeta constitutes a tripartite TA system that supposedly plays a role in the stabilization of resistance factors. The SprA1/SprA1AS and SprF1/SprG1 systems are post-transcriptionally regulated by RNA antitoxins and encode small membrane damaging proteins. TA systems controlled by interaction between toxin protein and antitoxin RNA have been identified in S. aureus in silico, but not yet experimentally proven. A closer inspection of possible links between TA systems and S. aureus pathophysiology will reveal, if these genetic loci may represent druggable targets. The modification of a staphylococcal TA toxin to a cyclopeptide antibiotic highlights the potential of TA systems as rather untapped sources of drug discovery. PMID:27164142

  9. Evaluation of antidiphtheria toxin nanobodies

    PubMed Central

    Shaker, Ghada H

    2010-01-01

    Nanobodies are the smallest fragments of naturally occurring single-domain antibodies that have evolved to be fully functional in the absence of a light chain. Conventional antibodies are glycoproteins comprising two heavy and two light chains. Surprisingly, all members of the Camelidae family possess a fraction of antibodies devoid of both light chains and the first constant domain. These types of antibodies are known as heavy-chain antibody (HcAb) nanobodies. There are three subclasses of IgG in dromedaries, namely IgG1, IgG2, and IgG3 of which IgG2 and IgG3 are of the HcAb type. These heavy chain antibodies constitute approximately 50% of the IgG in llama serum and as much as 75% of the IgG in camel serum. In the present work, the different IgG subclasses from an immunized camel (Camelus dromedarius) with divalent diphtheria-tetanus vaccine were purified using their different affinity for protein A and protein G and their absorbance measured at 280 nm. Purity control and characterization by 12% sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of IgG subclasses was done under reducing conditions. Protein bands were visualized after staining with Coomassie Blue, showing two bands at 50 kDa and 30 kDa for IgG1, while IgG2 and IgG3 produced only one band at 46 kDa and 43 kDa, respectively. An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test using diphtheria toxin and purified IgG subclasses from the immunized camel were performed to evaluate their efficiency. Compared with conventional IgG1, heavy chain antibodies (nanobodies) were shown to be more efficient in binding to diphtheria toxin antigen. This study revealed the possibility of using IgG2 and IgG3 nanobodies as an effective antitoxin for the treatment of diphtheria in humans. PMID:24198468

  10. Inhibition of maize histone deacetylases by HC toxin, the host-selective toxin of Cochliobolus carbonum.

    PubMed Central

    Brosch, G; Ransom, R; Lechner, T; Walton, J D; Loidl, P

    1995-01-01

    HC toxin, the host-selective toxin of the maize pathogen Cochliobolus carbonum, inhibited maize histone deacetylase (HD) at 2 microM. Chlamydocin, a related cyclic tetrapeptide, also inhibited HD activity. The toxins did not affect histone acetyltransferases. After partial purification of histone deacetylases HD1-A, HD1-B, and HD2 from germinating maize embryos, we demonstrated that the different enzymes were similarly inhibited by the toxins. Inhibitory activities were reversibly eliminated by treating toxins with 2-mercaptoethanol, presumably by modifying the carbonyl group of the epoxide-containing amino acid Aeo (2-amino-9,10-epoxy-8-oxodecanoic acid). Kinetic studies revealed that inhibition of HD was of the uncompetitive type and reversible. HC toxin, in which the epoxide group had been hydrolyzed, completely lost its inhibitory activity; when the carbonyl group of Aeo had been reduced to the corresponding alcohol, the modified toxin was less active than native toxin. In vivo treatment of embryos with HC toxin caused the accumulation of highly acetylated histone H4 subspecies and elevated acetate incorporation into H4 in susceptible-genotype embryos but not in the resistant genotype. HDs from chicken and the myxomycete Physarum polycephalum were also inhibited, indicating that the host selectivity of HC toxin is not determined by its inhibitory effect on HD. Consistent with these results, we propose a model in which HC toxin promotes the establishment of pathogenic compatibility between C. carbonum and maize by interfering with reversible histone acetylation, which is implicated in the control of fundamental cellular processes, such as chromatin structure, cell cycle progression, and gene expression. PMID:8535144

  11. Frs2α-deficiency in cardiac progenitors disrupts a subset of FGF signals required for outflow tract morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jue; Lin, Yongshun; Zhang, Yongyou; Lan, Yongsheng; Lin, Chunhong; Moon, Anne M.; Schwartz, Robert J.; Martin, James F.; Wang, Fen

    2009-01-01

    Summary The cardiac outflow tract (OFT) is a developmentally complex structure derived from multiple lineages and is often defective in human congenital anomalies. While emerging evidence shows that the fibroblast growth factor (FGF) is essential for OFT development, the downstream pathways mediating FGF-signaling in cardiac progenitors remain poorly understood. Here, we report that FRS2α, an adaptor protein that links FGF receptor kinases to multiple signaling pathways, mediates critical aspects of FGF-dependent OFT development. Ablation of Frs2α in mesodermal OFT progenitor cells that originate in the second heart field (SHF) affects their expansion into the OFT myocardium, resulting in OFT misalignment and hypoplasia. Moreover, Frs2α mutants had defective endothelial-mesenchymal-transition and neural crest cell recruitment into the OFT cushions, resulting in OFT septation defects. The results provide new insight into the signaling molecules downstream of FGF receptor tyrosine kinases in cardiac progenitors. PMID:18832393

  12. Bone Marrow Stress Decreases Osteogenic Progenitors.

    PubMed

    Ng, Adeline H; Baht, Gurpreet S; Alman, Benjamin A; Grynpas, Marc D

    2015-11-01

    Age-related bone loss may be a result of declining levels of stem cells in the bone marrow. Using the Col2.3Δtk (DTK) transgenic mouse, osteoblast depletion was used as a source of marrow stress in order to investigate the effects of aging on osteogenic progenitors which reside in the marrow space. Five-month-old DTK mice were treated with one or two cycles of ganciclovir to conditionally ablate differentiated osteoblasts, whereas controls were saline-treated. Treatment cycles were two weeks in length followed by four weeks of recovery. All animals were sacrificed at 8 months of age; bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) were harvested for cell culture and whole bones were excised for bone quality assessment. Colony-forming unit (CFU) assays were conducted to investigate the osteogenic potential of BMSC in vitro, and RNA was extracted to assess the expression of osteoblastic genes. Bone quality assessments included bone histomorphometry, TRAP staining, microcomputed tomography, and biomechanical testing. Osteoblast depletion decreased CFU-F (fibroblast), CFU-ALP (alkaline phosphatase), and CFU-VK (von Kossa) counts and BMSC osteogenic capacity in cell culture. Ex vivo, there were no differences in bone mineral density of vertebrae or femurs between treatment groups. Histology showed a decrease in bone volume and bone connectivity with repeated osteoblast depletion; however, this was accompanied by an increase in bone formation rate. There were no notable differences in osteoclast parameters or observed bone marrow adiposity. We have developed a model that uses bone marrow stress to mimic age-related decrease in osteogenic progenitors. Our data suggest that the number of healthy BMSCs and their osteogenic potential decline with repeated osteoblast depletion. However, activity of the remaining osteoblasts increases to compensate for this loss in progenitor osteogenic potential. PMID:26220824

  13. Magnetic Bead Based Immunoassay for Autonomous Detection of Toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Kwon, Y; Hara, C A; Knize, M G; Hwang, M H; Venkatesteswaran, K S; Wheeler, E K; Bell, P M; Renzi, R F; Fruetel, J A; Bailey, C G

    2008-05-01

    As a step towards toward the development of a rapid, reliable analyzer for bioagents in the environment, we are developing an automated system for the simultaneous detection of a group of select agents and toxins. To detect toxins, we modified and automated an antibody-based approach previously developed for manual medical diagnostics that uses fluorescent eTag{trademark} reporter molecules and is suitable for highly multiplexed assays. Detection is based on two antibodies binding simultaneously to a single antigen, one of which is labeled with biotin while the other is conjugated to a fluorescent eTag{trademark} through a cleavable linkage. Aqueous samples are incubated with the mixture of antibodies along with streptavidin-coated magnetic beads coupled to a photo-activatable porphyrin complex. In the presence of antigen, a molecular complex is formed where the cleavable linkage is held in proximity to the photoactivable group. Upon excitation at 680 nm, free radicals are generated, which diffuse and cleave the linkage, releasing the eTags{trademark}. Released eTags{trademark} are analyzed using capillary gel electrophoresis with laser-induced fluorescence detection. Limits of detection for ovalbumin and botulinum toxoid individually were 4 ng/mL (or 80 pg) and 16 ng/mL (or 320 pg), respectively, using the manual assay. In addition, we demonstrated the use of pairs of antibodies from different sources in a single assay to decrease the rate of false positives. Automation of the assay was demonstrated on a flow-through format with higher LODs of 125 ng/mL (or 2.5 ng) each of a mixture of ovalbumin and botulinum toxoid. This versatile assay can be easily modified with the appropriate antibodies to detect a wide range of toxins and other proteins.

  14. PemK Toxin of Bacillus anthracis Is a Ribonuclease

    PubMed Central

    Agarwal, Shivangi; Mishra, Neeraj Kumar; Bhatnagar, Sonika; Bhatnagar, Rakesh

    2010-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis genome harbors a toxin-antitoxin (TA) module encoding pemI (antitoxin) and pemK (toxin). This study describes the rPemK as a potent ribonuclease with a preference for pyrimidines (C/U), which is consistent with our previous study that demonstrated it as a translational attenuator. The in silico structural modeling of the PemK in conjunction with the site-directed mutagenesis confirmed the role of His-59 and Glu-78 as an acid-base couple in mediating the ribonuclease activity. The rPemK is shown to form a complex with the rPemI, which is in line with its function as a TA module. This rPemI-rPemK complex becomes catalytically inactive when both the proteins interact in a molar stoichiometry of 1. The rPemI displays vulnerability to proteolysis but attains conformational stability only upon rPemK interaction. The pemI-pemK transcript is shown to be up-regulated upon stress induction with a concomitant increase in the amount of PemK and a decline in the PemI levels, establishing the role of these modules in stress. The artificial perturbation of TA interaction could unleash the toxin, executing bacterial cell death. Toward this end, synthetic peptides are designed to disrupt the TA interaction. The peptides are shown to be effective in abrogating TA interaction in micromolar range in vitro. This approach can be harnessed as a potential antibacterial strategy against anthrax in the future. PMID:20022964

  15. ALDH1B1 is a potential stem / progenitor marker for multiple pancreas progenitor pools

    PubMed Central

    Ioannou, Marilia; Serafimidis, Ioannis; Arnes, Luis; Sussel, Lori; Singh, Surendra; Vasiliou, Vasilis; Gavalas, Anthony

    2013-01-01

    Aldehyde Dehydrogenase (ALDH) genes are increasingly associated with stem / progenitor cell status but their role in the maintenance of pluripotency remains uncertain. In a screen conducted for downstream Ngn3 target genes using ES derived pancreas progenitors we identified Aldh1b1, encoding a mitochondrial enzyme, as one of the genes strongly up regulated in response to Ngn3 expression. We found both by in situ hybridization and immunofluorescence using a specific antibody that ALDH1B1 is exclusively expressed in the emerging pancreatic buds of the early embryo (9.5 dpc) in a Pdx1 dependent manner. Around the time of secondary transition, ALDH1B1 expression was restricted in the tip tripotent progenitors of the branching epithelium and in a subset of the trunk epithelium. Expression in the latter was Ngn3 dependent. Subsequently, ALDH1B1 expression persisted only in the tip cells that become restricted to the exocrine lineage and declined rapidly as these cells mature. In the adult pancreas we identified rare ALDH1B1+ cells that become abundant following pancreas injury in either the caerulein or streptozotocin paradigms. Blocking ALDH catalytic activity in pancreas embryonic explants resulted in reduced size of the explants and accelerated differentiation suggesting for the first time that ALDH activity may be necessary in the developing pancreas for the maintenance and expansion of progenitor pools. PMID:23142317

  16. Adipose Tissue Residing Progenitors (Adipocyte Lineage Progenitors and Adipose Derived Stem Cells (ADSC)

    PubMed Central

    Berry, Ryan; Rodeheffer, Matthew S.; Rosen, Clifford J.; Horowitz, Mark C.

    2015-01-01

    The formation of brown, white and beige adipocytes have been a subject of intense scientific interest in recent years due to the growing obesity epidemic in the United States and around the world. This interest has led to the identification and characterization of specific tissue resident progenitor cells that give rise to each adipocyte population in vivo. However, much still remains to be discovered about each progenitor population in terms of their “niche” within each tissue and how they are regulated at the cellular and molecular level during healthy and diseased states. While our knowledge of brown, white and beige adipose tissue is rapidly increasing, little is still known about marrow adipose tissue and its progenitor despite recent studies demonstrating possible roles for marrow adipose tissue in regulating the hematopoietic space and systemic metabolism at large. This chapter focuses on our current knowledge of brown, white, beige and marrow adipose tissue with a specific focus on the formation of each tissue from tissue resident progenitor cells. PMID:26526875

  17. Loss of RhoA in neural progenitor cells causes the disruption of adherens junctions and hyperproliferation

    PubMed Central

    Katayama, Kei-ichi; Melendez, Jaime; Baumann, Jessica M.; Leslie, Jennifer R.; Chauhan, Bharesh K.; Nemkul, Niza; Lang, Richard A.; Kuan, Chia-Yi; Zheng, Yi; Yoshida, Yutaka

    2011-01-01

    The organization of neural progenitors in the developing mammalian neuroepithelium is marked by cadherin-based adherens junctions. Whereas RhoA, a founding member of the small Rho GTPase family, has been shown to play important roles in epithelial adherens junctions, its physiological roles in neural development remain uncertain due to the lack of specific loss-of-function studies. Here, we show that RhoA protein accumulates at adherens junctions in the developing mouse brain and colocalizes to the cadherin–catenin complex. Conditional deletion of RhoA in midbrain and forebrain neural progenitors using Wnt1-Cre and Foxg1-Cre mice, respectively, disrupts apical adherens junctions and causes massive dysplasia of the brain. Furthermore, RhoA-deficient neural progenitor cells exhibit accelerated proliferation, reduction of cell- cycle exit, and increased expression of downstream target genes of the hedgehog pathway. Consequently, both lines of conditional RhoA-deficient embryos exhibit expansion of neural progenitor cells and exencephaly-like protrusions. These results demonstrate a critical role of RhoA in the maintenance of apical adherens junctions and the regulation of neural progenitor proliferation in the developing mammalian brain. PMID:21502507

  18. Cephalopods as Vectors of Harmful Algal Bloom Toxins in Marine Food Webs

    PubMed Central

    Lopes, Vanessa M.; Lopes, Ana Rita; Costa, Pedro; Rosa, Rui

    2013-01-01

    Here we summarize the current knowledge on the transfer and accumulation of harmful algal bloom (HAB)-related toxins in cephalopods (octopods, cuttlefishes and squids). These mollusks have been reported to accumulate several HAB-toxins, namely domoic acid (DA, and its isomers), saxitoxin (and its derivatives) and palytoxin (and palytoxin-like compounds) and, therefore, act as HAB-toxin vectors in marine food webs. Coastal octopods and cuttlefishes store considerably high levels of DA (amnesic shellfish toxin) in several tissues, but mainly in the digestive gland (DG)—the primary site of digestive absorption and intracellular digestion. Studies on the sub-cellular partitioning of DA in the soluble and insoluble fractions showed that nearly all DA (92.6%) is found in the cytosol. This favors the trophic transfer of the toxins since cytosolic substances can be absorbed by predators with greater efficiency. The available information on the accumulation and tissue distribution of DA in squids (e.g., in stranded Humboldt squids, Dosidicus gigas) is scarcer than in other cephalopod groups. Regarding paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs), these organisms accumulate them at the greatest extent in DG >> kidneys > stomach > branchial hearts > posterior salivary glands > gills. Palytoxins are among the most toxic molecules identified and stranded octopods revealed high contamination levels, with ovatoxin (a palytoxin analogue) reaching 971 μg kg−1 and palytoxin reaching 115 μg kg−1 (the regulatory limit for PlTXs is 30 μg kg−1 in shellfish). Although the impacts of HAB-toxins in cephalopod physiology are not as well understood as in fish species, similar effects are expected since they possess a complex nervous system and highly developed brain comparable to that of the vertebrates. Compared to bivalves, cephalopods represent a lower risk of shellfish poisoning in humans, since they are usually consumed eviscerated, with exception of traditional dishes from the

  19. The Woodrat Gut Microbiota as an Experimental System for Understanding Microbial Metabolism of Dietary Toxins.

    PubMed

    Kohl, Kevin D; Dearing, M Denise

    2016-01-01

    The microbial communities inhabiting the alimentary tracts of mammals, particularly those of herbivores, are estimated to be one of the densest microbial reservoirs on Earth. The significance of these gut microbes in influencing the physiology, ecology and evolution of their hosts is only beginning to be realized. To understand the microbiome of herbivores with a focus on nutritional ecology, while evaluating the roles of host evolution and environment in sculpting microbial diversity, we have developed an experimental system consisting of the microbial communities of several species of herbivorous woodrats (genus Neotoma) that naturally feed on a variety of dietary toxins. We designed this system to investigate the long-standing, but experimentally neglected hypothesis that ingestion of toxic diets by herbivores is facilitated by the gut microbiota. Like several other rodent species, the woodrat stomach has a sacculated, non-gastric foregut portion. We have documented a dense and diverse community of microbes in the woodrat foregut, with several genera potentially capable of degrading dietary toxins and/or playing a role in stimulating hepatic detoxification enzymes of the host. The biodiversity of these gut microbes appears to be a function of host evolution, ecological experience and diet, such that dietary toxins increase microbial diversity in hosts with experience with these toxins while novel toxins depress microbial diversity. These microbial communities are critical to the ingestion of a toxic diet as reducing the microbial community with antibiotics impairs the host's ability to feed on dietary toxins. Furthermore, the detoxification capacity of gut microbes can be transferred from Neotoma both intra and interspecifically to naïve animals that lack ecological and evolutionary history with these toxins. In addition to advancing our knowledge of complex host-microbes interactions, this system holds promise for identifying microbes that could be useful in

  20. Cephalopods as vectors of harmful algal bloom toxins in marine food webs.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Vanessa M; Lopes, Ana Rita; Costa, Pedro; Rosa, Rui

    2013-09-01

    Here we summarize the current knowledge on the transfer and accumulation of harmful algal bloom (HAB)-related toxins in cephalopods (octopods, cuttlefishes and squids). These mollusks have been reported to accumulate several HAB-toxins, namely domoic acid (DA, and its isomers), saxitoxin (and its derivatives) and palytoxin (and palytoxin-like compounds) and, therefore, act as HAB-toxin vectors in marine food webs. Coastal octopods and cuttlefishes store considerably high levels of DA (amnesic shellfish toxin) in several tissues, but mainly in the digestive gland (DG)--the primary site of digestive absorption and intracellular digestion. Studies on the sub-cellular partitioning of DA in the soluble and insoluble fractions showed that nearly all DA (92.6%) is found in the cytosol. This favors the trophic transfer of the toxins since cytosolic substances can be absorbed by predators with greater efficiency. The available information on the accumulation and tissue distribution of DA in squids (e.g., in stranded Humboldt squids, Dosidicus gigas) is scarcer than in other cephalopod groups. Regarding paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs), these organisms accumulate them at the greatest extent in DG > kidneys > stomach > branchial hearts > posterior salivary glands > gills. Palytoxins are among the most toxic molecules identified and stranded octopods revealed high contamination levels, with ovatoxin (a palytoxin analogue) reaching 971 μg kg⁻¹ and palytoxin reaching 115 μg kg⁻¹ (the regulatory limit for PlTXs is 30 μg kg⁻¹ in shellfish). Although the impacts of HAB-toxins in cephalopod physiology are not as well understood as in fish species, similar effects are expected since they possess a complex nervous system and highly developed brain comparable to that of the vertebrates. Compared to bivalves, cephalopods represent a lower risk of shellfish poisoning in humans, since they are usually consumed eviscerated, with exception of traditional dishes from the

  1. The Woodrat Gut Microbiota as an Experimental System for Understanding Microbial Metabolism of Dietary Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Kohl, Kevin D.; Dearing, M. Denise

    2016-01-01

    The microbial communities inhabiting the alimentary tracts of mammals, particularly those of herbivores, are estimated to be one of the densest microbial reservoirs on Earth. The significance of these gut microbes in influencing the physiology, ecology and evolution of their hosts is only beginning to be realized. To understand the microbiome of herbivores with a focus on nutritional ecology, while evaluating the roles of host evolution and environment in sculpting microbial diversity, we have developed an experimental system consisting of the microbial communities of several species of herbivorous woodrats (genus Neotoma) that naturally feed on a variety of dietary toxins. We designed this system to investigate the long-standing, but experimentally neglected hypothesis that ingestion of toxic diets by herbivores is facilitated by the gut microbiota. Like several other rodent species, the woodrat stomach has a sacculated, non-gastric foregut portion. We have documented a dense and diverse community of microbes in the woodrat foregut, with several genera potentially capable of degrading dietary toxins and/or playing a role in stimulating hepatic detoxification enzymes of the host. The biodiversity of these gut microbes appears to be a function of host evolution, ecological experience and diet, such that dietary toxins increase microbial diversity in hosts with experience with these toxins while novel toxins depress microbial diversity. These microbial communities are critical to the ingestion of a toxic diet as reducing the microbial community with antibiotics impairs the host’s ability to feed on dietary toxins. Furthermore, the detoxification capacity of gut microbes can be transferred from Neotoma both intra and interspecifically to naïve animals that lack ecological and evolutionary history with these toxins. In addition to advancing our knowledge of complex host-microbes interactions, this system holds promise for identifying microbes that could be useful in

  2. In situ gastrointestinal protection against anthrax edema toxin by single-chain antibody fragment producing lactobacilli

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Anthrax is caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis and is regarded as one of the most prominent bioterrorism threats. Anthrax toxicity is induced by the tripartite toxin complex, composed of the receptor-binding anthrax protective antigen and the two enzymatic subunits, lethal factor and edema factor. Recombinant lactobacilli have previously been used to deliver antibody fragments directed against surface epitopes of a variety of pathogens, including Streptococcus mutans, Porphyromonas gingivalis, and rotavirus. Here, we addressed whether or not anthrax toxins could be targeted and neutralised in the gastrointestinal tract by lactobacilli producing recombinant antibody fragments as a model system for toxin neutralisation in the gastrointestinal lumen. Results The neutralising anti-PA scFv, 1H, was expressed in L. paracasei as a secreted protein, a cell wall-anchored protein or both secreted and wall-anchored protein. Cell wall display on lactobacilli and PA binding of the anchored constructs was confirmed by flow cytometry analysis. Binding of secreted or attached scFv produced by lactobacilli to PA were verified by ELISA. Both construct were able to protect macrophages in an in vitro cytotoxicity assay. Finally, lactobacilli producing the cell wall attached scFv were able to neutralise the activity of anthrax edema toxin in the GI tract of mice, in vivo. Conclusion We have developed lactobacilli expressing a neutralising scFv fragment against the PA antigen of the anthrax toxin, which can provide protection against anthrax toxins both in vitro and in vivo. Utilising engineered lactobacilli therapeutically for neutralising toxins in the gastrointestinal tract can potential be expanded to provide protection against a range of additional gastrointestinal pathogens. The ability of lactobacilli to colonise the gastrointestinal tract may allow the system to be used both prophylactically and therapeutically. PMID:22185669

  3. Type Ia Supernova Progenitors, Cosmology, and Systematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayden, Brian

    2013-01-01

    Type Ia supernovae have become fundamental tools for cosmology, but their progenitors, explosion mechanism, and dependence on environment remain key problems to be solved to improve their reliability as cosmological distance estimators. In this talk I will present my research into the nature of SN Ia explosions and their environments, and discuss ongoing efforts to understand systematic errors in SN Ia distance measurements. Using SDSS-II SNe, I developed the 2-stretch fitting method for SN Ia light curves. The 2-stretch method allows the rise and decline portions of the light curve to be fit separately, and as a result I discovered that SN Ia light curves with a normal decline rate show a large variation in rise times. This departure from the single stretch model also results in an average rise time of about 17.5 days, 2 days shorter than previously accepted results. While accurate measurements of the rise time do not significantly improve cosmological results, they do improve the estimate of 56-Ni yield, which is an important constraint in theoretical modeling of SN Ia explosions. Using the 2-stretch fitter, I conducted the first search for shock interactions between the exploding white dwarf and a potential companion star in the single degenerate channel. I found no evidence for shocks in an SDSS-II sample of about 100 SNe, and showed using simulations that this rules out shocks above about 9% of peak SN flux. Comparing to theoretical models of single degenerate progenitors, I rule out red giant companions and main sequence stars above 6 solar masses as common companions to SNe Ia. More recent work has focused on the effect of the SN environment, as multiple studies have shown a correlation between host galaxy mass and SN distances. The source of this mass correlation is unknown, but both metallicity and progenitor age are candidate explanations for the observed correlation. I will present new research that attempts to determine the underlying source of the mass

  4. Progenitor endothelial cell involvement in Alzheimer's disease

    SciTech Connect

    Budinger, Thomas F.

    2003-05-01

    There is compelling evidence that endothelial cells of the brain and periphery are dysfunctional in Alzheimer's Disease. There is evidence for a fundamental defect in, or abnormal aging of, endothelial progenitor cells in atherosclerosis. The possibility that endothelial cell defects are a primary cause for Alzheimer's Disease or other dementias can be researched by molecular and cell biology studies as well as cell trafficking studies using recently demonstrated molecular imaging methods. The evidence for abnormal endothelial function and the methods to explore this hypothesis are presented.

  5. Mass Spectrometry-Based Method of Detecting and Distinguishing Type 1 and Type 2 Shiga-Like Toxins in Human Serum

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Christopher J.; Erickson-Beltran, Melissa L.; Skinner, Craig B.; Patfield, Stephanie A.; He, Xiaohua

    2015-01-01

    Shiga-like toxins (verotoxins) are responsible for the virulence associated with a variety of foodborne bacterial pathogens. Direct detection of toxins requires a specific and sensitive technique. In this study, we describe a mass spectrometry-based method of analyzing the tryptic decapeptides derived from the non-toxic B subunits. A gene encoding a single protein that yields a set of relevant peptides upon digestion with trypsin was designed. The 15N-labeled protein was prepared by growing the expressing bacteria in minimal medium supplemented with 15NH4Cl. Trypsin digestion of the 15N-labeled protein yields a set of 15N-labeled peptides for use as internal standards to identify and quantify Shiga or Shiga-like toxins. We determined that this approach can be used to detect, quantify and distinguish among the known Shiga toxins (Stx) and Shiga-like toxins (Stx1 and Stx2) in the low attomole range (per injection) in complex media, including human serum. Furthermore, Stx1a could be detected and distinguished from the newly identified Stx1e in complex media. As new Shiga-like toxins are identified, this approach can be readily modified to detect them. Since intact toxins are digested with trypsin prior to analysis, the handling of intact Shiga toxins is minimized. The analysis can be accomplished within 5 h. PMID:26633510

  6. Expression of functional diphtheria toxin receptors on highly toxin-sensitive mouse cells that specifically bind radioiodinated toxin.

    PubMed Central

    Naglich, J G; Rolf, J M; Eidels, L

    1992-01-01

    Diphtheria toxin (DT), a bacterial protein exotoxin, inactivates mammalian cell elongation factor 2 after toxin internalization by receptor-mediated endocytosis. To isolate the DT receptor, we cotransfected DT-resistant wild-type mouse L-M cells with a cDNA library constructed from RNA of highly toxin-sensitive monkey Vero cells and with a neomycin-resistance gene. Stably transfected G418-resistant L-M colonies were screened for DT sensitivity in a replica plate assay. After screening of 8000 colonies, one DT-sensitive (DTS) colony was isolated. The purified DTS mouse cells are highly toxin-sensitive; they are at least 1000-fold more sensitive than wild-type L-M cells and only approximately 10-fold less sensitive than Vero cells. Incubation of the DTS mouse cells with CRM 197, a nontoxic form of DT that competitively inhibits the binding of native DT to the toxin receptor, protected them from DT-mediated toxicity. More important, these DTS mouse cells express receptors on their cell surface that bind radioiodinated DT in a specific fashion, a property hitherto readily demonstrable only with highly toxin-sensitive cells of monkey origin. Furthermore, HA6DT, a DT fragment comprising the Mr 6000 carboxyl-terminal receptor-binding domain, inhibited the binding of radioiodinated toxin to these DTS mouse cells to the same extent as unlabeled DT. With these DTS mouse cells as a source of monkey cDNA, it should be possible to clone the gene encoding the DT receptor. PMID:1549577

  7. The Type Ia Supernovae Progenitor Problem: Searching for Progenitors in the Milky Way

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Birchall, Alexander; Di Stefano, R.; Primini, F.; Scalzo, R.

    2013-01-01

    One of the most active areas of current astrophysical research is the search for the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae. Understanding the nature(s) of the progenitors is crucial if we are to use these supernovae to conduct high-precision measurements of the history of cosmic expansion, because in order to confirm them as standardizable candles we need to understand the mechanism by which they are produced. Type Ia supernovae occur when carbon/oxygen white dwarfs explode, having gained mass either by accretion from a companion or by merging with another white dwarf. The white dwarfs in all Type Ia progenitors must go through a stage of high-rate accretion and possibly of nuclear burning. They should then be detectable as bright objects, with luminosities as high as a few times 1038 erg s-1. Furthermore, whatever the correct model(s), more than 1000 bright progenitors (and other systems that may be equally bright but in which the white dwarf does not reach the critical mass) are expected in the Milky Way. We are conducting a comprehensive search through archived data to identify unusual bright sources that may correspond to white dwarfs accreting at high rates. A significant fraction of the progenitors may appear as x-ray sources that are either supersoft or quasisoft some of the time. We have therefore searched the ROSAT, Chandra, and XMM databases to identify all such soft sources in the Milky Way that are detectable from Earth. We report on our results and their implications.

  8. A biomimetic nanosponge that absorbs pore-forming toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Che-Ming J.; Fang, Ronnie H.; Copp, Jonathan; Luk, Brian T.; Zhang, Liangfang

    2013-05-01

    Detoxification treatments such as toxin-targeted anti-virulence therapy offer ways to cleanse the body of virulence factors that are caused by bacterial infections, venomous injuries and biological weaponry. Because existing detoxification platforms such as antisera, monoclonal antibodies, small-molecule inhibitors and molecularly imprinted polymers act by targeting the molecular structures of toxins, customized treatments are required for different diseases. Here, we show a biomimetic toxin nanosponge that functions as a toxin decoy in vivo. The nanosponge, which consists of a polymeric nanoparticle core surrounded by red blood cell membranes, absorbs membrane-damaging toxins and diverts them away from their cellular targets. In a mouse model, the nanosponges markedly reduce the toxicity of staphylococcal alpha-haemolysin (α-toxin) and thus improve the survival rate of toxin-challenged mice. This biologically inspired toxin nanosponge presents a detoxification treatment that can potentially treat a variety of injuries and diseases caused by pore-forming toxins.

  9. From progenitors to integrated neurons: role of neurotransmitters in adult olfactory neurogenesis.

    PubMed

    Bovetti, Serena; Gribaudo, Simona; Puche, Adam C; De Marchis, Silvia; Fasolo, Aldo

    2011-12-01

    Adult neurogenesis is due to the persistence of pools of constitutive stem cells able to give rise to a progeny of proliferating progenitors. In rodents, adult neurogenic niches have been found in the subventricular zone (SVZ) along the lateral ventricles and in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus in the hippocampus. SVZ progenitors undergo a unique process of tangential migration from the lateral ventricle to the olfactory bulb (OB) where they differentiate mainly into GABAergic interneurons in the granule and glomerular layers. SVZ progenitor proliferation, migration and differentiation into fully integrated neurons, are strictly related processes regulated by complex interactions between cell intrinsic and extrinsic influences. Numerous observations demonstrate that neurotrasmitters are involved in all steps of the adult neurogenic process, but the understanding of their role is hampered by their intricate mechanism of action and by the highly complex network in which neurotransmitters work. By considering the three main steps of olfactory adult neurogenesis (proliferation, migration and integration), this review will discuss recent advances in the study of neurotransmitters, highlighting the regulatory mechanisms upstream and downstream their action. PMID:21641990

  10. Brg1 directly regulates Olig2 transcription and is required for oligodendrocyte progenitor cell specification.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Steven; Banine, Fatima; Feistel, Kerstin; Foster, Scott; Xing, Rubing; Struve, Jaime; Sherman, Larry S

    2016-05-15

    The Olig2 basic-helix-loop-helix transcription factor promotes oligodendrocyte specification in early neural progenitor cells (NPCs), including radial glial cells, in part by recruiting SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complexes to the enhancers of genes involved in oligodendrocyte differentiation. How Olig2 expression is regulated during oligodendrogliogenesis is not clear. Here, we find that the Brg1 subunit of SWI/SNF complexes interacts with a proximal Olig2 promoter and represses Olig2 transcription in the mouse cortex at E14, when oligodendrocyte progenitors (OPCs) are not yet found in this location. Brg1 does not interact with the Olig2 promoter in the E14 ganglionic eminence, where NPCs differentiate into Olig2-positive OPCs. Consistent with these findings, Brg1-null NPCs demonstrate precocious expression of Olig2 in the cortex. However, these cells fail to differentiate into OPCs. We further find that Brg1 is necessary for neuroepithelial-to-radial glial cell transition, but not neuronal differentiation despite a reduction in expression of the pro-neural transcription factor Pax6. Collectively, these and earlier findings support a model whereby Brg1 promotes neurogenic radial glial progenitor cell specification but is dispensable for neuronal differentiation. Concurrently, Brg1 represses Olig2 expression and the specification of OPCs, but is required for OPC differentiation and oligodendrocyte maturation. PMID:27067865

  11. Clostridium perfringens Delta-Toxin Induces Rapid Cell Necrosis

    PubMed Central

    Seike, Soshi; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Kobayashi, Keiko; Takehara, Masaya; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2016-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens delta-toxin is a β-pore-forming toxin and a putative pathogenic agent of C. perfringens types B and C. However, the mechanism of cytotoxicity of delta-toxin remains unclear. Here, we investigated the mechanisms of cell death induced by delta-toxin in five cell lines (A549, A431, MDCK, Vero, and Caco-2). All cell lines were susceptible to delta-toxin. The toxin caused rapid ATP depletion and swelling of the cells. Delta-toxin bound and formed oligomers predominantly in plasma membrane lipid rafts. Destruction of the lipid rafts with methyl β-cyclodextrin inhibited delta-toxin-induced cytotoxicity and ATP depletion. Delta-toxin caused the release of carboxyfluorescein from sphingomyelin-cholesterol liposomes and formed oligomers; toxin binding to the liposomes declined with decreasing cholesterol content in the liposomes. Flow cytometric assays with annexin V and propidium iodide revealed that delta-toxin treatment induced an elevation in the population of annexin V-negative and propidium iodide-positive cells. Delta-toxin did not cause the fragmentation of DNA or caspase-3 activation. Furthermore, delta-toxin caused damage to mitochondrial membrane permeability and cytochrome c release. In the present study, we demonstrate that delta-toxin produces cytotoxic activity through necrosis. PMID:26807591

  12. Toxin from skin of frogs of the genus Atelopus: differentiation from Dendrobatid toxins.

    PubMed

    Fuhrman, F A; Fuhrman, G J; Mosher, H S

    1969-09-26

    A potent, dialyzable toxin (atelopidtoxin) occurs in the skin of frogs of the genus Atelopus. A concentrate of atelopidtoxin from Atelopus zeteki has an LD(50) in mice of 16 micrograms per kilogram. It differs from batrachotoxin, tetrodotoxin, and saxitoxin, the only known nonprotein substances of greater toxicity, as well as from all toxins previously isolated from amphibia. PMID:5807965

  13. Structural basis for the inhibition of voltage-dependent K+ channel by gating modifier toxin

    PubMed Central

    Ozawa, Shin-ichiro; Kimura, Tomomi; Nozaki, Tomohiro; Harada, Hitomi; Shimada, Ichio; Osawa, Masanori

    2015-01-01

    Voltage-dependent K+ (Kv) channels play crucial roles in nerve and muscle action potentials. Voltage-sensing domains (VSDs) of Kv channels sense changes in the transmembrane potential, regulating the K+-permeability across the membrane. Gating modifier toxins, which have been used for the functional analyses of Kv channels, inhibit Kv channels by binding to VSD. However, the structural basis for the inhibition remains elusive. Here, fluorescence and NMR analyses of the interaction between VSD derived from KvAP channel and its gating modifier toxin, VSTx1, indicate that VSTx1 recognizes VSD under depolarized condition. We identified the VSD-binding residues of VSTx1 and their proximal residues of VSD by the cross-saturation (CS) and amino acid selective CS experiments, which enabled to build a docking model of the complex. These results provide structural basis for the specific binding and inhibition of Kv channels by gating modifier toxins. PMID:26382304

  14. Receptor-targeting mechanisms of pain-causing toxins: How ow?

    PubMed Central

    Bohlen, Christopher J.; Julius, David

    2012-01-01

    Venoms often target vital processes to cause paralysis or death, but many types of venom also elicit notoriously intense pain. While these pain-producing effects can result as a byproduct of generalized tissue trauma, there are now multiple examples of venom-derived toxins that target somatosensory nerve terminals in order to activate nociceptive (pain-sensing) neural pathways. Intriguingly, investigation of the venom components that are responsible for evoking pain has revealed novel roles and/or configurations of well-studied toxin motifs. This review serves to highlight pain-producing toxins that target the capsaicin receptor, TRPV1, or members of the acid-sensing ion channel family, and to discuss the utility of venom-derived multivalent and multimeric complexes. PMID:22538196

  15. Clostridium perfringens Alpha-Toxin Induces Gm1a Clustering and Trka Phosphorylation in the Host Cell Membrane.

    PubMed

    Takagishi, Teruhisa; Oda, Masataka; Kabura, Michiko; Kurosawa, Mie; Tominaga, Kaori; Urano, Shiori; Ueda, Yoshibumi; Kobayashi, Keiko; Kobayashi, Toshihide; Sakurai, Jun; Terao, Yutaka; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens alpha-toxin elicits various immune responses such as the release of cytokines, chemokines, and superoxide via the GM1a/TrkA complex. Alpha-toxin possesses phospholipase C (PLC) hydrolytic activity that contributes to signal transduction in the pathogenesis of gas gangrene. Little is known about the relationship between lipid metabolism and TrkA activation by alpha-toxin. Using live-cell fluorescence microscopy, we monitored transbilayer movement of diacylglycerol (DAG) with the yellow fluorescent protein-tagged C1AB domain of protein kinase C-γ (EYFP-C1AB). DAG accumulated at the marginal region of the plasma membrane in alpha toxin-treated A549 cells, which also exhibited GM1a clustering and TrkA phosphorylation. Annexin V binding assays showed that alpha-toxin induced the exposure of phosphatidylserine on the outer leaflet of the plasma membrane. However, H148G, a variant toxin which binds cell membrane and has no enzymatic activity, did not induce DAG translocation, GM1a clustering, or TrkA phosphorylation. Alpha-toxin also specifically activated endogenous phospholipase Cγ-1 (PLCγ-1), a TrkA adaptor protein, via phosphorylation. U73122, an endogenous PLC inhibitor, and siRNA for PLCγ-1 inhibited the formation of DAG and release of IL-8. GM1a accumulation and TrkA phosphorylation in A549 cells treated with alpha-toxin were also inhibited by U73122. These results suggest that the flip-flop motion of hydrophobic lipids such as DAG leads to the accumulation of GM1a and TrkA. We conclude that the formation of DAG by alpha-toxin itself (first step) and activation of endogenous PLCγ-1 (second step) leads to alterations in membrane dynamics, followed by strong phosphorylation of TrkA. PMID:25910247

  16. Clostridium perfringens Alpha-Toxin Induces Gm1a Clustering and Trka Phosphorylation in the Host Cell Membrane

    PubMed Central

    Takagishi, Teruhisa; Oda, Masataka; Kabura, Michiko; Kurosawa, Mie; Tominaga, Kaori; Urano, Shiori; Ueda, Yoshibumi; Kobayashi, Keiko; Kobayashi, Toshihide; Sakurai, Jun; Terao, Yutaka; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2015-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens alpha-toxin elicits various immune responses such as the release of cytokines, chemokines, and superoxide via the GM1a/TrkA complex. Alpha-toxin possesses phospholipase C (PLC) hydrolytic activity that contributes to signal transduction in the pathogenesis of gas gangrene. Little is known about the relationship between lipid metabolism and TrkA activation by alpha-toxin. Using live-cell fluorescence microscopy, we monitored transbilayer movement of diacylglycerol (DAG) with the yellow fluorescent protein-tagged C1AB domain of protein kinase C-γ (EYFP-C1AB). DAG accumulated at the marginal region of the plasma membrane in alpha toxin-treated A549 cells, which also exhibited GM1a clustering and TrkA phosphorylation. Annexin V binding assays showed that alpha-toxin induced the exposure of phosphatidylserine on the outer leaflet of the plasma membrane. However, H148G, a variant toxin which binds cell membrane and has no enzymatic activity, did not induce DAG translocation, GM1a clustering, or TrkA phosphorylation. Alpha-toxin also specifically activated endogenous phospholipase Cγ-1 (PLCγ-1), a TrkA adaptor protein, via phosphorylation. U73122, an endogenous PLC inhibitor, and siRNA for PLCγ-1 inhibited the formation of DAG and release of IL-8. GM1a accumulation and TrkA phosphorylation in A549 cells treated with alpha-toxin were also inhibited by U73122. These results suggest that the flip-flop motion of hydrophobic lipids such as DAG leads to the accumulation of GM1a and TrkA. We conclude that the formation of DAG by alpha-toxin itself (first step) and activation of endogenous PLCγ-1 (second step) leads to alterations in membrane dynamics, followed by strong phosphorylation of TrkA. PMID:25910247

  17. Structural Basis of the pH-Dependent Assembly of a Botulinum Neurotoxin Complex

    PubMed Central

    Matsui, Tsutomu; Gu, Shenyan; Lam, Kwok-ho; Carter, Lester G.; Rummel, Andreas; Mathews, Irimpan I.; Jin, Rongsheng

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are among the most poisonous biological substances known. They assemble with non-toxic non-hemagglutinin (NTNHA) protein to form the minimally functional progenitor toxin complexes (M-PTC), which protects BoNT in the gastrointestinal tract and release it upon entry into the circulation. Here we provide molecular insight into the assembly between BoNT/A and NTNHA-A using small-angle X-ray scattering. We found that the free form BoNT/A maintains a pH-independent conformation with limited domain flexibility. Intriguingly, the free form NTNHA-A adopts pH-dependent conformational changes due to a torsional motion of its C-terminal domain. Once forming a complex at acidic pH, they each adopt a stable conformation that is similar to that observed in the crystal structure of the M-PTC. Our results suggest that assembly of the M-PTC depends on the environmental pH, and that the complex form of BoNT/A is induced by interacting with NTNHA-A at acidic pH. PMID:25240768

  18. Noninvasive Imaging Technologies Reveal Edema Toxin as a Key Virulence Factor in Anthrax

    PubMed Central

    Dumetz, Fabien; Jouvion, Grégory; Khun, Huot; Glomski, Ian Justin; Corre, Jean-Philippe; Rougeaux, Clémence; Tang, Wei-Jen; Mock, Michèle; Huerre, Michel; Goossens, Pierre Louis

    2011-01-01

    Powerful noninvasive imaging technologies enable real-time tracking of pathogen-host interactions in vivo, giving access to previously elusive events. We visualized the interactions between wild-type Bacillus anthracis and its host during a spore infection through bioluminescence imaging coupled with histology. We show that edema toxin plays a central role in virulence in guinea pigs and during inhalational infection in mice. Edema toxin (ET), but not lethal toxin (LT), markedly modified the patterns of bacterial dissemination leading, to apparent direct dissemination to the spleen and provoking apoptosis of lymphoid cells. Each toxin alone provoked particular histological lesions in the spleen. When ET and LT are produced together during infection, a specific temporal pattern of lesion developed, with early lesions typical of LT, followed at a later stage by lesions typical of ET. Our study provides new insights into the complex spatial and temporal effects of B. anthracis toxins in the infected host, suggesting a greater role than previously suspected for ET in anthrax and suggesting that therapeutic targeting of ET contributes to protection. PMID:21641378

  19. The Typhoid Toxin Promotes Host Survival and the Establishment of a Persistent Asymptomatic Infection.

    PubMed

    Del Bel Belluz, Lisa; Guidi, Riccardo; Pateras, Ioannis S; Levi, Laura; Mihaljevic, Boris; Rouf, Syed Fazle; Wrande, Marie; Candela, Marco; Turroni, Silvia; Nastasi, Claudia; Consolandi, Clarissa; Peano, Clelia; Tebaldi, Toma; Viero, Gabriella; Gorgoulis, Vassilis G; Krejsgaard, Thorbjørn; Rhen, Mikael; Frisan, Teresa

    2016-04-01

    Bacterial genotoxins, produced by several Gram-negative bacteria, induce DNA damage in the target cells. While the responses induced in the host cells have been extensively studied in vitro, the role of these effectors during the course of infection remains poorly characterized. To address this issue, we assessed the effects of the Salmonella enterica genotoxin, known as typhoid toxin, in in vivo models of murine infection. Immunocompetent mice were infected with isogenic S. enterica, serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) strains, encoding either a functional or an inactive typhoid toxin. The presence of the genotoxic subunit was detected 10 days post-infection in the liver of infected mice. Unexpectedly, its expression promoted the survival of the host, and was associated with a significant reduction of severe enteritis in the early phases of infection. Immunohistochemical and transcriptomic analysis confirmed the toxin-mediated suppression of the intestinal inflammatory response. The presence of a functional typhoid toxin further induced an increased frequency of asymptomatic carriers. Our data indicate that the typhoid toxin DNA damaging activity increases host survival and favours long-term colonization, highlighting a complex cross-talk between infection, DNA damage response and host immune response. These findings may contribute to understand why such effectors have been evolutionary conserved and horizontally transferred among Gram-negative bacteria. PMID:27055274

  20. Mechanisms of Ricin Toxin Neutralization Revealed through Engineered Homodimeric and Heterodimeric Camelid Antibodies.

    PubMed

    Herrera, Cristina; Tremblay, Jacqueline M; Shoemaker, Charles B; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2015-11-13

    Novel antibody constructs consisting of two or more different camelid heavy-chain only antibodies (VHHs) joined via peptide linkers have proven to have potent toxin-neutralizing activity in vivo against Shiga, botulinum, Clostridium difficile, anthrax, and ricin toxins. However, the mechanisms by which these so-called bispecific VHH heterodimers promote toxin neutralization remain poorly understood. In the current study we produced a new collection of ricin-specific VHH heterodimers, as well as VHH homodimers, and characterized them for their ability neutralize ricin in vitro and in vivo. We demonstrate that the VHH heterodimers, but not homodimers were able to completely protect mice against ricin challenge, even though the two classes of antibodies (heterodimers and homodimers) had virtually identical affinities for ricin holotoxin and similar IC50 values in a Vero cell cytotoxicity assay. The VHH heterodimers did differ from the homodimers in their ability to promote toxin aggregation in solution, as revealed through analytical ultracentrifugation. Moreover, the VHH heterodimers that were most effective at promoting ricin aggregation in solution were also the most effective at blocking ricin attachment to cell surfaces. Collectively, these data suggest that heterodimeric VHH-based neutralizing agents may function through the formation of antibody-toxin complexes that are impaired in their ability to access host cell receptors. PMID:26396190

  1. Structure and function of cholera toxin and the related Escherichia coli heat-labile enterotoxin.

    PubMed Central

    Spangler, B D

    1992-01-01

    Cholera and the related Escherichia coli-associated diarrheal disease are important problems confronting Third World nations and any area where water supplies can become contaminated. The disease is extremely debilitating and may be fatal in the absence of treatment. Symptoms are caused by the action of cholera toxin, secreted by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae, or by a closely related heat-labile enterotoxin, produced by Escherichia coli, that causes a milder, more common traveler's diarrhea. Both toxins bind receptors in intestinal epithelial cells and insert an enzymatic subunit that modifies a G protein associated with the adenylate cyclase complex. The consequent stimulated production of cyclic AMP, or other factors such as increased synthesis of prostaglandins by intoxicated cells, initiates a metabolic cascade that results in the excessive secretion of fluid and electrolytes characteristic of the disease. The toxins have a very high degree of structural and functional homology and may be evolutionarily related. Several effective new vaccine formulations have been developed and tested, and a growing family of endogenous cofactors is being discovered in eukaryotic cells. The recent elucidation of the three-dimensional structure of the heat-labile enterotoxin has provided an opportunity to examine and compare the correlations between structure and function of the two toxins. This information may improve our understanding of the disease process itself, as well as illuminate the role of the toxin in studies of signal transduction and G-protein function. Images PMID:1480112

  2. The Typhoid Toxin Promotes Host Survival and the Establishment of a Persistent Asymptomatic Infection

    PubMed Central

    Pateras, Ioannis S.; Levi, Laura; Mihaljevic, Boris; Rouf, Syed Fazle; Wrande, Marie; Candela, Marco; Turroni, Silvia; Nastasi, Claudia; Consolandi, Clarissa; Peano, Clelia; Tebaldi, Toma; Viero, Gabriella; Gorgoulis, Vassilis G.; Krejsgaard, Thorbjørn; Rhen, Mikael; Frisan, Teresa

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial genotoxins, produced by several Gram-negative bacteria, induce DNA damage in the target cells. While the responses induced in the host cells have been extensively studied in vitro, the role of these effectors during the course of infection remains poorly characterized. To address this issue, we assessed the effects of the Salmonella enterica genotoxin, known as typhoid toxin, in in vivo models of murine infection. Immunocompetent mice were infected with isogenic S. enterica, serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) strains, encoding either a functional or an inactive typhoid toxin. The presence of the genotoxic subunit was detected 10 days post-infection in the liver of infected mice. Unexpectedly, its expression promoted the survival of the host, and was associated with a significant reduction of severe enteritis in the early phases of infection. Immunohistochemical and transcriptomic analysis confirmed the toxin-mediated suppression of the intestinal inflammatory response. The presence of a functional typhoid toxin further induced an increased frequency of asymptomatic carriers. Our data indicate that the typhoid toxin DNA damaging activity increases host survival and favours long-term colonization, highlighting a complex cross-talk between infection, DNA damage response and host immune response. These findings may contribute to understand why such effectors have been evolutionary conserved and horizontally transferred among Gram-negative bacteria. PMID:27055274

  3. Identification of Wnt Genes Expressed in Neural Progenitor Zones during Zebrafish Brain Development.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Robert N; Panahi, Samin; Piotrowski, Tatjana; Dorsky, Richard I

    2015-01-01

    Wnt signaling regulates multiple aspects of vertebrate central nervous system (CNS) development, including neurogenesis. However, vertebrate genomes can contain up to 25 Wnt genes, the functions of which are poorly characterized partly due to redundancy in their expression. To identify candidate Wnt genes as candidate mediators of pathway activity in specific brain progenitor zones, we have performed a comprehensive expression analysis at three different stages during zebrafish development. Antisense RNA probes for 21 Wnt genes were generated from existing and newly synthesized cDNA clones and used for in situ hybridization on whole embryos and dissected brains. As in other species, we found that Wnt expression patterns in the embryonic zebrafish CNS are complex and often redundant. We observed that progenitor zones in the telencephalon, dorsal diencephalon, hypothalamus, midbrain, midbrain-hindbrain boundary, cerebellum and retina all express multiple Wnt genes. Our data identify 12 specific ligands that can now be tested using loss-of-function approaches. PMID:26713625

  4. Ectopic lymphoid structures function as microniches for tumor progenitor cells in hepatocellular carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Finkin, Shlomi; Yuan, Detian; Stein, Ilan; Taniguchi, Koji; Weber, Achim; Unger, Kristian; Browning, Jeffrey L.; Goossens, Nicolas; Nakagawa, Shigeki; Gunasekaran, Ganesh; Schwartz, Myron E.; Kobayashi, Masahiro; Kumada, Hiromitsu; Berger, Michael; Pappo, Orit; Rajewsky, Klaus; Hoshida, Yujin; Karin, Michael; Heikenwalder, Mathias; Ben-Neriah, Yinon; Pikarsky, Eli

    2015-01-01

    Ectopic lymphoid-like structures (ELS) are often observed in cancer, yet their function is obscure. Although ELSs signify good prognosis in certain malignancies, we found that hepatic ELSs indicate poor prognosis in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We studied an HCC mouse model, displaying abundant ELSs and found that they constitute immunopathological microniches, wherein progenitor malignant hepatocytes appear and thrive in a complex cellular and cytokine milieu until gaining self-sufficiency. Progenitor egression and tumor formation is associated with autocrine production of cytokines previously provided by the niche. ELSs develop upon cooperation between the innate and adaptive immune system which is facilitated by NF-κB activation and abolished by T cell depletion. These aberrant immune foci could be new targets for cancer therapy. PMID:26502405

  5. Ectopic lymphoid structures function as microniches for tumor progenitor cells in hepatocellular carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Finkin, Shlomi; Yuan, Detian; Stein, Ilan; Taniguchi, Koji; Weber, Achim; Unger, Kristian; Browning, Jeffrey L; Goossens, Nicolas; Nakagawa, Shigeki; Gunasekaran, Ganesh; Schwartz, Myron E; Kobayashi, Masahiro; Kumada, Hiromitsu; Berger, Michael; Pappo, Orit; Rajewsky, Klaus; Hoshida, Yujin; Karin, Michael; Heikenwalder, Mathias; Ben-Neriah, Yinon; Pikarsky, Eli

    2015-12-01

    Ectopic lymphoid-like structures (ELSs) are often observed in cancer, yet their function is obscure. Although ELSs signify good prognosis in certain malignancies, we found that hepatic ELSs indicated poor prognosis for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We studied an HCC mouse model that displayed abundant ELSs and found that they constituted immunopathological microniches wherein malignant hepatocyte progenitor cells appeared and thrived in a complex cellular and cytokine milieu until gaining self-sufficiency. The egress of progenitor cells and tumor formation were associated with the autocrine production of cytokines previously provided by the niche. ELSs developed via cooperation between the innate immune system and adaptive immune system, an event facilitated by activation of the transcription factor NF-κB and abolished by depletion of T cells. Such aberrant immunological foci might represent new targets for cancer therapy. PMID:26502405

  6. Identification of Wnt Genes Expressed in Neural Progenitor Zones during Zebrafish Brain Development

    PubMed Central

    Piotrowski, Tatjana; Dorsky, Richard I.

    2015-01-01

    Wnt signaling regulates multiple aspects of vertebrate central nervous system (CNS) development, including neurogenesis. However, vertebrate genomes can contain up to 25 Wnt genes, the functions of which are poorly characterized partly due to redundancy in their expression. To identify candidate Wnt genes as candidate mediators of pathway activity in specific brain progenitor zones, we have performed a comprehensive expression analysis at three different stages during zebrafish development. Antisense RNA probes for 21 Wnt genes were generated from existing and newly synthesized cDNA clones and used for in situ hybridization on whole embryos and dissected brains. As in other species, we found that Wnt expression patterns in the embryonic zebrafish CNS are complex and often redundant. We observed that progenitor zones in the telencephalon, dorsal diencephalon, hypothalamus, midbrain, midbrain-hindbrain boundary, cerebellum and retina all express multiple Wnt genes. Our data identify 12 specific ligands that can now be tested using loss-of-function approaches. PMID:26713625

  7. prlF and yhaV encode a new toxin-antitoxin system in Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Oliver; Schuenemann, Verena J.; Hand, Nicholas J.; Silhavy, Thomas J.; Martin, Jörg; Lupas, Andrei N.; Djuranovic, Sergej

    2009-01-01

    Summary Toxin-antitoxin systems consist of a stable toxin, frequently with endonuclease activity, and a small, labile antitoxin, which sequesters the toxin into an inactive complex. Under unfavorable conditions, the antitoxin is degraded, leading to activation of the toxin and resulting in growth arrest, possibly also in bacterial programmed cell death. Correspondingly, these systems are generally viewed as agents of the stress response in prokaryotes. Here we show that prlF and yhaV encode a novel toxin-antitoxin system in Escherichia coli. YhaV, a ribonuclease of the RelE superfamily, causes reversible bacteriostasis that is counteracted by PrlF, a swapped-hairpin transcription factor homologous to MazE. The two proteins form a tight, hexameric complex, which binds with high specificity to a conserved sequence in the promotor region of the prlF-yhaV operon. As homologs of MazE and RelE, respectively, PrlF and YhaV provide an evolutionary connection between the two best-characterized toxin-antitoxin systems in E. coli, mazEF and relEB. PMID:17706670

  8. Neutralizing Monoclonal Antibodies against Disparate Epitopes on Ricin Toxin’s Enzymatic Subunit Interfere with Intracellular Toxin Transport

    PubMed Central

    Yermakova, Anastasiya; Klokk, Tove Irene; O’Hara, Joanne M.; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J.

    2016-01-01

    Ricin is a member of the A-B family of bacterial and plant toxins that exploit retrograde trafficking to the Golgi apparatus and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) as a means to deliver their cytotoxic enzymatic subunits into the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. In this study we demonstrate that R70 and SyH7, two well-characterized monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) directed against distinct epitopes on the surface of ricin’s enzymatic subunit (RTA), interfere with toxin transport from the plasma membrane to the trans Golgi network. Toxin-mAb complexes formed on the cell surface delayed ricin’s egress from EEA-1+ and Rab7+ vesicles and enhanced toxin accumulation in LAMP-1+ vesicles, suggesting the complexes were destined for degradation in lysosomes. Three other RTA-specific neutralizing mAbs against different epitopes were similar to R70 and SyH7 in terms of their effects on ricin retrograde transport. We conclude that interference with toxin retrograde transport may be a hallmark of toxin-neutralizing antibodies directed against disparate epitopes on RTA. PMID:26949061

  9. Ancient Venom Systems: A Review on Cnidaria Toxins.

    PubMed

    Jouiaei, Mahdokht; Yanagihara, Angel A; Madio, Bruno; Nevalainen, Timo J; Alewood, Paul F; Fry, Bryan G

    2015-06-01

    Cnidarians are the oldest extant lineage of venomous animals. Despite their simple anatomy, they are capable of subduing or repelling prey and predator species that are far more complex and recently evolved. Utilizing specialized penetrating nematocysts, cnidarians inject the nematocyst content or "venom" that initiates toxic and immunological reactions in the envenomated organism. These venoms contain enzymes, potent pore forming toxins, and neurotoxins. Enzymes include lipolytic and proteolytic proteins that catabolize prey tissues. Cnidarian pore forming toxins self-assemble to form robust membrane pores that can cause cell death via osmotic lysis. Neurotoxins exhibit rapid ion channel specific activities. In addition, certain cnidarian venoms contain or induce the release of host vasodilatory biogenic amines such as serotonin, histamine, bunodosine and caissarone accelerating the pathogenic effects of other venom enzymes and porins. The cnidarian attacking/defending mechanism is fast and efficient, and massive envenomation of humans may result in death, in some cases within a few minutes to an hour after sting. The complexity of venom components represents a unique therapeutic challenge and probably reflects the ancient evolutionary history of the cnidarian venom system. Thus, they are invaluable as a therapeutic target for sting treatment or as lead compounds for drug design. PMID:26094698

  10. Ancient Venom Systems: A Review on Cnidaria Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Jouiaei, Mahdokht; Yanagihara, Angel A.; Madio, Bruno; Nevalainen, Timo J.; Alewood, Paul F.; Fry, Bryan G.

    2015-01-01

    Cnidarians are the oldest extant lineage of venomous animals. Despite their simple anatomy, they are capable of subduing or repelling prey and predator species that are far more complex and recently evolved. Utilizing specialized penetrating nematocysts, cnidarians inject the nematocyst content or “venom” that initiates toxic and immunological reactions in the envenomated organism. These venoms contain enzymes, potent pore forming toxins, and neurotoxins. Enzymes include lipolytic and proteolytic proteins that catabolize prey tissues. Cnidarian pore forming toxins self-assemble to form robust membrane pores that can cause cell death via osmotic lysis. Neurotoxins exhibit rapid ion channel specific activities. In addition, certain cnidarian venoms contain or induce the release of host vasodilatory biogenic amines such as serotonin, histamine, bunodosine and caissarone accelerating the pathogenic effects of other venom enzymes and porins. The cnidarian attacking/defending mechanism is fast and efficient, and massive envenomation of humans may result in death, in some cases within a few minutes to an hour after sting. The complexity of venom components represents a unique therapeutic challenge and probably reflects the ancient evolutionary history of the cnidarian venom system. Thus, they are invaluable as a therapeutic target for sting treatment or as lead compounds for drug design. PMID:26094698

  11. Intracellular Trafficking of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin b

    PubMed Central

    Umezaki, Mariko; Tashiro, Ryo; Oda, Masataka; Kobayashi, Keiko; Shibutani, Masahiro; Takagishi, Teruhisa; Ishidoh, Kazumi; Fukuda, Mitsunori; Sakurai, Jun

    2012-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin is composed of an enzymatic component (Ia) and a binding component (Ib). Ib binds to a cell surface receptor, undergoes oligomerization in lipid rafts, and binds Ia. The resulting complex is then endocytosed. Here, we show the intracellular trafficking of iota-toxin. After the binding of the Ib monomer with cells at 4°C, oligomers of Ib formed at 37°C and later disappeared. Immunofluorescence staining of Ib revealed that the internalized Ib was transported to early endosomes. Some Ib was returned to the plasma membrane through recycling endosomes, whereas the rest was transported to late endosomes and lysosomes for degradation. Degraded Ib was delivered to the plasma membrane by an increase in the intracellular Ca2+ concentration caused by Ib. Bafilomycin A1, an endosomal acidification inhibitor, caused the accumulation of Ib in endosomes, and both nocodazole and colchicine, microtubule-disrupting agents, restricted Ib's movement in the cytosol. These results indicated that an internalized Ia and Ib complex was delivered to early endosomes and that subsequent delivery of Ia to the cytoplasm occurs mainly in early endosomes. Ib was either sent back to the plasma membranes through recycling endosomes or transported to late endosomes and lysosomes for degradation. Degraded Ib was transported to plasma membranes. PMID:22825447

  12. Synthesis and Biology of Cyclic Imine Toxins, An Emerging Class of Potent, Globally Distributed Marine Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Stivala, Craig E.; Benoit, Evelyne; Araoz, Romulo; Servent, Denis; Novikov, Alexei

    2014-01-01

    From a small group of exotic compounds isolated only two decades ago, Cyclic Imine (CI) toxins have become a major class of marine toxins with global distribution. Their distinct chemical structure, biological mechanism of action, and intricate chemistry ensures that CI toxins will continue to be the subject of fascinating fundamental studies in the broad fields of chemistry, chemical biology, and toxicology. The worldwide occurrence of potent CI toxins in marine environments, their accumulation in shellfish, and chemical stability are important considerations in assessing risk factors for human health. This review article aims to provide an account of chemistry, biology, and toxicology of CI toxins from their discovery to the present day. PMID:25338021

  13. Synthesis and biology of cyclic imine toxins, an emerging class of potent, globally distributed marine toxins.

    PubMed

    Stivala, Craig E; Benoit, Evelyne; Aráoz, Rómulo; Servent, Denis; Novikov, Alexei; Molgó, Jordi; Zakarian, Armen

    2015-03-01

    From a small group of exotic compounds isolated only two decades ago, Cyclic Imine (CI) toxins have become a major class of marine toxins with global distribution. Their distinct chemical structure, biological mechanism of action, and intricate chemistry ensures that CI toxins will continue to be the subject of fascinating fundamental studies in the broad fields of chemistry, chemical biology, and toxicology. The worldwide occurrence of potent CI toxins in marine environments, their accumulation in shellfish, and chemical stability are important considerations in assessing risk factors for human health. This review article aims to provide an account of chemistry, biology, and toxicology of CI toxins from their discovery to the present day. PMID:25338021

  14. Neutrino emission from nearby supernova progenitors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshida, Takashi; Takahashi, Koh; Umeda, Hideyuki

    2016-05-01

    Neutrinos have an important role for energy loss process during advanced evolution of massive stars. Although the luminosity and average energy of neutrinos during the Si burning are much smaller than those of supernova neutrinos, these neutrinos are expected to be detected by the liquid scintillation neutrino detector KamLAND if a supernova explosion occurs at the distance of ~100 parsec. We investigate the neutrino emission from massive stars during advanced evolution. We calculate the evolution of the energy spectra of neutrinos produced through electron-positron pair-annihilation in the supernova progenitors with the initial mass of 12, 15, and 20 M ⊙ during the Si burning and core-collapse stages. The neutrino emission rate increases from ~ 1050 s-1 to ~ 1052 s-1. The average energy of electron-antineutrinos is about 1.25 MeV during the Si burning and gradually increases until the core-collapse. For one week before the supernova explosion, the KamLAND detector is expected to observe 12-24 and 6-13 v¯e events in the normal and inverted mass hierarchies, respectively, if a supernova explosion of a 12-20 M ⊙ star occurs at the distance of 200 parsec, corresponding to the distance to Betelgeuse. Observations of neutrinos from SN progenitors have a possibility to constrain the core structure and the evolution just before the core collapse of massive stars.

  15. Red supergiants as type II supernova progenitors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Negueruela, Ignacio; Dorda, Ricardo; González-Fernández, Carlos; Marco, Amparo

    2015-08-01

    Recent searches for supernova IIp progenitors in external galaxies have led to the identification of red objects with magnitudes and colours indicative of red supergiants, in most cases implying quite low luminosities and hence masses well below 10Msol. Stellar models, on the other hand, do not predict explosions from objects below 9 Msol. What does our knowledge of local red supergiants tells us about the expected properties of such objects?We have carried out a comprehensive spectroscopic and photometric study of a sample of hundreds of red supergiants in the Milky Way and both Magellanic Clouds. We have explored correlations between different parameters and the position of stars in the HR diagrams of open clusters. At solar metallicty, there is strong evidence for a phase of very heavy mass loss at the end of the red supergiant phase, but the existence of such a phase is still not confirmed at SMC metallicities. Objects of ~ 7Msol, on the other hand, become very dusty in the SMC, and appear as very luminous Miras.Among Milky Way clusters, we find a surprising lack of objects readily identifiable as the expected 7 to 10 Msol red supergiants or AGB stars. We are carrying out an open cluster survey aimed at filling this region of the HR diagram with reliable data. Finally, we will discuss the implications of all this findings for the expected properties of supernova progenitors, as it looks unlikely that typical red supergiants may explode without undergoing further evolution.

  16. Ventral vs. dorsal chick dermal progenitor specification.

    PubMed

    Fliniaux, Ingrid; Viallet, Jean P; Dhouailly, Danielle

    2004-01-01

    The dorsal and the ventral trunk integuments of the chick differ in their dermal cell lineage (originating from the somatic and somatopleural mesoderm respectively) and in the distribution of their feather fields. The dorsal macropattern has a large spinal pteryla surrounded by semi-apteria, whereas the ventral skin has a true medial apterium surrounded by the ventral pterylae. Comparison of the results of heterotopic transplantations of distal somatopleure in place of somatic mesoderm (Mauger 1972) or in place of proximal somatopleure (our data), leads to two conclusions. These are that the fate of the midventral apterium is not committed at day 2 of incubation and that the signals from the environment which specify the ventral and dorsal featherforming dermal progenitors are different. Effectively, Shh, but not Wnt -1 signalling can induce the formation of feather forming dermis from the embryonic somatopleure. Shh is not able, however, to trigger the formation of a feather forming dermis from the extra embryonic somatopleure. This brief report constitutes the first attempt, by comparing old and new preliminary results, to understand whether dermal progenitors at different sites are specified by different signalling pathways. PMID:15272375

  17. The progenitors of supernovae Type Ia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toonen, Silvia

    2014-09-01

    Despite the significance of Type Ia supernovae (SNeIa) in many fields in astrophysics, SNeIa lack a theoretical explanation. SNeIa are generally thought to be thermonuclear explosions of carbon/oxygen (CO) white dwarfs (WDs). The canonical scenarios involve white dwarfs reaching the Chandrasekhar mass, either by accretion from a non-degenerate companion (single-degenerate channel, SD) or by a merger of two CO WDs (double-degenerate channel, DD). The study of SNeIa progenitors is a very active field of research for binary population synthesis (BPS) studies. The strength of the BPS approach is to study the effect of uncertainties in binary evolution on the macroscopic properties of a binary population, in order to constrain binary evolutionary processes. I will discuss the expected SNeIa rate from the BPS approach and the uncertainties in their progenitor evolution, and compare with current observations. I will also discuss the results of the POPCORN project in which four BPS codes were compared to better understand the differences in the predicted SNeIa rate of the SD channel. The goal of this project is to investigate whether differences in the simulated populations are due to numerical effects or whether they can be explained by differences in the input physics. I will show which assumptions in BPS codes affect the results most and hence should be studied in more detail.

  18. Crystal structure of Clostridium difficile toxin A.

    PubMed

    Chumbler, Nicole M; Rutherford, Stacey A; Zhang, Zhifen; Farrow, Melissa A; Lisher, John P; Farquhar, Erik; Giedroc, David P; Spiller, Benjamin W; Melnyk, Roman A; Lacy, D Borden

    2016-01-01

    Clostridium difficile infection is the leading cause of hospital-acquired diarrhoea and pseudomembranous colitis. Disease is mediated by the actions of two toxins, TcdA and TcdB, which cause the diarrhoea, as well as inflammation and necrosis within the colon(1,2). The toxins are large (308 and 270 kDa, respectively), homologous (47% amino acid identity) glucosyltransferases that target small GTPases within the host(3,4). The multidomain toxins enter cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis and, upon exposure to the low pH of the endosome, insert into and deliver two enzymatic domains across the membrane. Eukaryotic inositol-hexakisphosphate (InsP6) binds an autoprocessing domain to activate a proteolysis event that releases the N-terminal glucosyltransferase domain into the cytosol. Here, we report the crystal structure of a 1,832-amino-acid fragment of TcdA (TcdA1832), which reveals a requirement for zinc in the mechanism of toxin autoprocessing and an extended delivery domain that serves as a scaffold for the hydrophobic α-helices involved in pH-dependent pore formation. A surface loop of the delivery domain whose sequence is strictly conserved among all large clostridial toxins is shown to be functionally important, and is highlighted for future efforts in the development of vaccines and novel therapeutics. PMID:27571750

  19. Cyanobacterial Toxin Degrading Bacteria: Who Are They?

    PubMed Central

    Kormas, Konstantinos Ar.; Lymperopoulou, Despoina S.

    2013-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are ubiquitous in nature and are both beneficial and detrimental to humans. Benefits include being food supplements and producing bioactive compounds, like antimicrobial and anticancer substances, while their detrimental effects are evident by toxin production, causing major ecological problems at the ecosystem level. To date, there are several ways to degrade or transform these toxins by chemical methods, while the biodegradation of these compounds is understudied. In this paper, we present a meta-analysis of the currently available 16S rRNA and mlrA (microcystinase) genes diversity of isolates known to degrade cyanobacterial toxins. The available data revealed that these bacteria belong primarily to the Proteobacteria, with several strains from the sphingomonads, and one from each of the Methylobacillus and Paucibacter genera. Other strains belonged to the genera Arthrobacter, Bacillus, and Lactobacillus. By combining the ecological knowledge on the distribution, abundance, and ecophysiology of the bacteria that cooccur with toxic cyanobacterial blooms and newly developed molecular approaches, it is possible not only to discover more strains with cyanobacterial toxin degradation abilities, but also to reveal the genes associated with the degradation of these toxins. PMID:23841072

  20. Crystal structure of Clostridium difficile toxin A

    PubMed Central

    Chumbler, Nicole M.; Rutherford, Stacey A.; Zhang, Zhifen; Farrow, Melissa A.; Lisher, John P.; Farquhar, Erik; Giedroc, David P.; Spiller, Benjamin W.; Melnyk, Roman A.; Lacy, D. Borden

    2016-01-01

    Clostridium difficile infection is the leading cause of hospital-acquired diarrhoea and pseudomembranous colitis. Disease is mediated by the actions of two toxins, TcdA and TcdB, which cause the diarrhoea, as well as inflammation and necrosis within the colon1,2. The toxins are large (308 and 270 kDa, respectively), homologous (47% amino acid identity) glucosyltransferases that target small GTPases within the host3,4. The multidomain toxins enter cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis and, upon exposure to the low pH of the endosome, insert into and deliver two enzymatic domains across the membrane. Eukaryotic inositol-hexakisphosphate (InsP6) binds an autoprocessing domain to activate a proteolysis event that releases the N-terminal glucosyltransferase domain into the cytosol. Here, we report the crystal structure of a 1,832-amino-acid fragment of TcdA (TcdA1832), which reveals a requirement for zinc in the mechanism of toxin autoprocessing and an extended delivery domain that serves as a scaffold for the hydrophobic α-helices involved in pH-dependent pore formation. A surface loop of the delivery domain whose sequence is strictly conserved among all large clostridial toxins is shown to be functionally important, and is highlighted for future efforts in the development of vaccines and novel therapeutics. PMID:27512603

  1. Binding of NAD+ to pertussis toxin.

    PubMed

    Lobban, M D; Irons, L I; van Heyningen, S

    1991-06-24

    The equilibrium dissociation constant of NAD+ and pertussis toxin was determined by equilibrium dialysis and by the quenching of the protein's intrinsic fluorescence on titration with NAD+. A binding constant, Kd, of 24 +/- 2 microM at 30 degrees C was obtained from equilibrium dialysis, consistent with the previously determined value for the Michaelis constant, Km, of 30 +/- 5 microM for NAD+ (when the toxin is catalysing the ADP-ribosylation of water and of dithiothreitol). The intrinsic fluorescence of pertussis toxin was quenched by up to 60% on titration with NAD+, and after correction for dilution and inner filter effects, a Kd value of 27 microM at 30 degrees C was obtained, agreeing well with that found by equilibrium dialysis. The binding constants were measured at a number of temperatures using both techniques, and from this the enthalpy of binding of NAD+ to toxin was determined to be 30 kJ.mol-1, a typical value for a protein-ligand interaction. There is one binding site for NAD+ per toxin molecule. PMID:1648404

  2. A truncated diphtheria toxin based recombinant porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxin.

    PubMed

    Peraino, Jaclyn Stromp; Schenk, Marian; Zhang, Huiping; Li, Guoying; Hermanrud, Christina E; Neville, David M; Sachs, David H; Huang, Christene A; Duran-Struuck, Raimon; Wang, Zhirui

    2013-05-31

    Targeted cell therapies are possible through the generation of recombinant fusion proteins that combine a toxin, such as diphtheria toxin (DT), with an antibody or other molecule that confers specificity. Upon binding of the fusion protein to the cell of interest, the diphtheria toxin is internalized which results in protein synthesis inhibition and subsequent cell death. We have recently expressed and purified the recombinant soluble porcine CTLA-4 both with and without N-glycosylation in yeast Pichia pastoris for in vivo use in our preclinical swine model. The glycosylated and non-N-glycosylated versions of this recombinant protein each bind to a porcine CD80 expressing B-cell lymphoma line (LCL13271) with equal affinity (K(D)=13 nM). In this study we have linked each of the glycosylated and non-N-glycosylated soluble porcine CTLA-4 proteins to the truncated diphtheria toxin DT390 through genetic engineering yielding three versions of the porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxins: 1) monovalent glycosylated soluble porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxin; 2) monovalent non-N-glycosylated soluble porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxin and 3) bivalent non-N-glycosylated soluble porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxin. Protein synthesis inhibition analysis demonstrated that while all three fusion toxins are capable of inhibiting protein synthesis in vitro, the non-N-glycosylated porcine CTLA-4 isoforms function most efficiently. Binding analysis using flow cytometry of the porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxins to LCL13271 cells also demonstrated that the non-N-glycosylated porcine CTLA-4 isoforms bind to these cells with higher affinity compared to the glycosylated fusion toxin. The monovalent non-N-glycosylated porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxin was tested in vivo. NSG (NOD/SCID IL-2 receptor γ(-)/(-)) mice were injected with porcine CD80(+) LCL13271 tumor cells. All animals succumbed to tumors and those treated with the monovalent non-N-glycosylated porcine CTLA-4 fusion toxin survived longer based on a symptomatic scoring

  3. Identification of Small Molecule Inhibitors of Clostridium perfringens ε-Toxin Cytotoxicity Using a Cell-Based High-Throughput Screen.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Michelle; Weaver, Charles David; McClain, Mark S

    2010-07-01

    The Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin, a select agent, is responsible for a severe, often fatal enterotoxemia characterized by edema in the heart, lungs, kidney, and brain. The toxin is believed to be an oligomeric pore-forming toxin. Currently, there is no effective therapy for countering the cytotoxic activity of the toxin in exposed individuals. Using a robust cell-based high-throughput screening (HTS) assay, we screened a 151,616-compound library for the ability to inhibit ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Survival of MDCK cells exposed to the toxin was assessed by addition of resazurin to detect metabolic activity in surviving cells. The hit rate for this screen was 0.6%. Following a secondary screen of each hit in triplicate and assays to eliminate false positives, we focused on three structurally-distinct compounds: an N-cycloalkylbenzamide, a furo[2,3-b]quinoline, and a 6H-anthra[1,9-cd]isoxazol. None of the three compounds appeared to inhibit toxin binding to cells or the ability of the toxin to form oligomeric complexes. Additional assays demonstrated that two of the inhibitory compounds inhibited ε-toxin-induced permeabilization of MDCK cells to propidium iodide. Furthermore, the two compounds exhibited inhibitory effects on cells pre-treated with toxin. Structural analogs of one of the inhibitors identified through the high-throughput screen were analyzed and provided initial structure-activity data. These compounds should serve as the basis for further structure-activity refinement that may lead to the development of effective anti-ε-toxin therapeutics. PMID:20721308

  4. Identification of Small Molecule Inhibitors of Clostridium perfringens ε-Toxin Cytotoxicity Using a Cell-Based High-Throughput Screen

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Michelle; Weaver, Charles David; McClain, Mark S.

    2010-01-01

    The Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin, a select agent, is responsible for a severe, often fatal enterotoxemia characterized by edema in the heart, lungs, kidney, and brain. The toxin is believed to be an oligomeric pore-forming toxin. Currently, there is no effective therapy for countering the cytotoxic activity of the toxin in exposed individuals. Using a robust cell-based high-throughput screening (HTS) assay, we screened a 151,616-compound library for the ability to inhibit ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Survival of MDCK cells exposed to the toxin was assessed by addition of resazurin to detect metabolic activity in surviving cells. The hit rate for this screen was 0.6%. Following a secondary screen of each hit in triplicate and assays to eliminate false positives, we focused on three structurally-distinct compounds: an N-cycloalkylbenzamide, a furo[2,3-b]quinoline, and a 6H-anthra[1,9-cd]isoxazol. None of the three compounds appeared to inhibit toxin binding to cells or the ability of the toxin to form oligomeric complexes. Additional assays demonstrated that two of the inhibitory compounds inhibited ε-toxin-induced permeabilization of MDCK cells to propidium iodide. Furthermore, the two compounds exhibited inhibitory effects on cells pre-treated with toxin. Structural analogs of one of the inhibitors identified through the high-throughput screen were analyzed and provided initial structure-activity data. These compounds should serve as the basis for further structure-activity refinement that may lead to the development of effective anti-ε-toxin therapeutics. PMID:20721308

  5. Developmental Regulation of the Toxin Sensitivity of Ca2+ -Permeable AMPA Receptors in Cortical Glia

    PubMed Central

    Meucci, Olimpia; Fatatis, Alessandro; Holzwarth, James A.; Miller, Richard J.

    2009-01-01

    We examined the properties of glutamate agonist-induced Ca2+ fluxes in cultured CG-4 and O-2A progenitor cells from rat cortex. Kainate-induced Ca2+ fluxes in these cells were found to be attributable to the activation of AMPA receptors. Thus, these fluxes were enhanced by cyclothiazide but not by concanavalin A and were blocked completely by GYKI-53655. We simultaneously examined kainate-induced Ca2+ entry and Na+ currents in these cells under voltage-clamp conditions. Both of these parameters were blocked by Joro spider toxin (JSTx) in undifferentiated cells. However, neither JSTx nor Argiotoxin 636 effectively blocked either parameter in cells differentiated into type II astrocytes. This change in toxin sensitivity occurred slowly over a period of several days. Similar results were obtained in Ca2+ -imaging studies. When cells were differentiated into oligodendrocytes, they showed an intermediate sensitivity to block by JSTx as assessed using imaging and voltage-clamp studies. Analysis of the expression of AMPA-receptor subunits showed an increase in the concentration of glutamate receptor-2 (GluR2) in CG-4 cells as they differentiated into type II astrocytes and oligodendrocytes. These results demonstrate that the AMPA receptors in cells of the O-2A lineage flux appreciable amounts of Ca2+ but may contain variable amounts of edited GluR2 subunits. PMID:8551336

  6. A cis-acting antitoxin domain within the chromosomal toxin-antitoxin module EzeT of Escherichia coli quenches toxin activity.

    PubMed

    Rocker, Andrea; Meinhart, Anton

    2015-08-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are widespread genetic modules in the genomes of bacteria and archaea emerging as key players that modulate bacterial physiology. They consist of two parts, a toxic component that blocks an essential cellular process and an antitoxin that inhibits this toxic activity during normal growth. According to the nature of the antitoxin and the mode of inhibition, TA systems are subdivided into different types. Here, we describe the characterization of a type II-like TA system in Escherichia coli called EzeT. While in conventional type II systems the antitoxin is expressed in trans to form an inactive protein-protein complex, EzeT consists of two domains combining toxin and cis-acting antitoxin functionalities in a single polypeptide chain. We show that the C-terminal domain of EzeT is homologous to zeta toxins and is toxic in vivo. The lytic phenotype could be attributed to UDP-N-acetylglucosamine phosphorylation, so far only described for type II epsilon/zeta systems from Gram-positive streptococci. Presence of the N-terminal domain inhibits toxicity in vivo and strongly attenuates kinase activity. Autoinhibition by a cis-acting antitoxin as described here for EzeT-type TA systems can explain the occurrence of single or unusually large toxins, further expanding our understanding of the TA system network. PMID:25943309

  7. Programming Hippocampal Neural Stem/Progenitor Cells into Oligodendrocytes Enhances Remyelination in the Adult Brain after Injury.

    PubMed

    Braun, Simon M G; Pilz, Gregor-Alexander; Machado, Raquel A C; Moss, Jonathan; Becher, Burkhard; Toni, Nicolas; Jessberger, Sebastian

    2015-06-23

    Demyelinating diseases are characterized by a loss of oligodendrocytes leading to axonal degeneration and impaired brain function. Current strategies used for the treatment of demyelinating disease such as multiple sclerosis largely rely on modulation of the immune system. Only limited treatment options are available for treating the later stages of the disease, and these treatments require regenerative therapies to ameliorate the consequences of oligodendrocyte loss and axonal impairment. Directed differentiation of adult hippocampal neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs) into oligodendrocytes may represent an endogenous source of glial cells for cell-replacement strategies aiming to treat demyelinating disease. Here, we show that Ascl1-mediated conversion of hippocampal NSPCs into mature oligodendrocytes enhances remyelination in a diphtheria-toxin (DT)-inducible, genetic model for demyelination. These findings highlight the potential of targeting hippocampal NSPCs for the treatment of demyelinated lesions in the adult brain. PMID:26074082

  8. Toxin-induced resistance in Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin-treated macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Salles, Isabelle I.; Tucker, Amy E.; Voth, Daniel E.; Ballard, Jimmy D.

    2003-01-01

    In the current study, we show that macrophages adaptively resist anthrax lethal toxin (LT) through a toxin-activated process termed toxin-induced resistance (TIR). TIR was triggered by pretreatment of RAW 264.7 or J774A.1 macrophages with a low dose of LT for at least 6 h, which resulted in resistance to high doses of LT for 96 h. Activation of TIR required functional toxin, because LT subunits, mutants, and heat-inactivated toxin were unable to trigger resistance. TIR macrophages were not altered in toxin receptor levels or cell cycle profiles. Treatment of TIR macrophages with high doses of LT resulted in a sustained decline in full-length mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase 2, a known target of lethal factor, and a marked reduction in diphosphorylated extracellular response kinases 1,2 for 24 h. However, despite the sustained loss of full-length mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase 2, by 48 h, TIR macrophages regained diphosphorylated extracellular response kinases 1,2, suggesting an adaptation led to recovery of this signaling pathway. TIR macrophages were also able to maintain normal levels of ubiquitinylated proteins, whereas sensitive cells show a rapid reduction in ubiquitin-modified proteins before cell death, indicating a possible alteration in proteasome activity contributed to resistance. These results provide a paradigm for toxin-cell interactions and suggest macrophages are capable of adapting to and tolerating toxic doses of LT. PMID:14519843

  9. Construction, expression and characterization of chimaeric toxins containing the ribonucleolytic toxin restrictocin: intracellular mechanism of action.

    PubMed

    Rathore, D; Batra, J K

    1997-06-15

    Restrictocin is a ribonucleolytic toxin produced by the fungus Aspergillus restrictus. Two chimaeric toxins containing restrictocin directed at the human transferrin receptor have been constructed. Anti-TFR(scFv)-restrictocin is encoded by a gene produced by fusing the DNA encoding a single-chain antigen-combining region (scFv) of a monoclonal antibody, directed at the human transferrin receptor, at the 5' end of that encoding restrictocin. The other chimaeric toxin, restrictocin-anti-TFR(scFv), is encoded by a gene fusion containing the DNA encoding the single-chain antigen-combining region of antibody to human transferrin receptor at the 3' end of the DNA encoding restrictocin. These gene fusions were expressed in Escherichia coli, and fusion proteins purified from the inclusion bodies by simple chromatography techniques to near-homogeneity. The two chimaeric toxins were found to be equally active in inhibiting protein synthesis in a cell-free in vitro translation assay system. The chimaeric toxins were selectively toxic to the target cells in culture with potent cytotoxic activities. However, restrictocin-anti-TFR(scFv) was more active than anti-TFR(scFv)-restrictocin on all cell lines studied. By using protease and metabolic inhibitors, it can be shown that, to manifest their cytotoxic activity, the restrictocin-containing chimaeric toxins need to be proteolytically processed intracellularly and the free toxin or a fragment thereof thus generated is translocated to the target via a route involving the Golgi apparatus. PMID:9210405

  10. Antibodies against recombinant shiga toxin subunit B neutralize shiga toxin toxicity in HeLa cells.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Pallavi; Singh, Manglesh Kumar; Singh, Padma; Tiwari, Mugdha; Dhaked, Ram Kumar

    2010-06-01

    Shigella dysenteriae type 1 and Escherichia coli O157:H7 produce Shiga toxin 1 (Stx) and Shiga toxin1 (Stx1), respectively and these two toxins are almost identical. E. coli O157:H7 is the major cause of diarrhea-associated hemolytic uremic syndrome. Stx and Stx1 are AB5 type of toxin with a molecular weight of 70 kDa, comprising an enzymaticaly-active A subunit (32 kDa) and five receptor-binding B subunits (7.7 kDa). In this study DNA fragment (289 bp, Gene Bank Accn No. EF685161) coding for B chain of Stx was amplified from S. dysenteriae type1 and cloned. Shiga toxin-binding subunit was expressed and purified in native conditions by affinity and gel permeation chromatography with the yield of 5.1 mg/L in shake flask culture. For the purpose of immunization, the polypeptide was polymerized with glutaraldehyde. Hyper immune serum produced in mice reacted with the purified polypeptide and intact Shiga toxin. The anti-StxB antiserum effectively neutralized the cytotoxicity of Shiga toxin towards HeLa cells. PMID:20044923

  11. Use of botulinum toxin in Meige's disease.

    PubMed

    Maurri, S; Brogelli, S; Alfieri, G; Barontini, F

    1988-01-01

    Four patients with severe Meige's disease (blepharospasm-oromandibular dystonia) have been treated, after having given an informed consent, by local injections of purified botulinum toxin type "A". Previous systemic therapy with anticholinergics, dopamine antagonists and other drugs had been unsuccessful in all these subjects. Each patient was treated by saline solution injected with the same method as botulinum toxin, just once. The self-evaluation of patients and the clinical evaluation that some of us- unaware of the kind of therapy which had been performed- gave to the symptoms on the basis of videotapes, for each session of injection, showed that the injections of botulinum toxin are effective in the treatment of such disorder. The duration of the beneficial effect was slightly shorter in these patients than in patients with blepharospasm treated by the same method. PMID:3247565

  12. Methods for the detection of marine toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Wekell, M.M.; Manger, R.M.; Hadley, S.W.; Hungerford, J.M.

    1995-12-01

    Toxic materials have been dumped into the seas from waste streams and other pollutant sources such as runoff, etc. For protection of public health, it is essential that rapid, reliable and simple methods exist to detect marine toxins in seafoods. In addition, it is necessary to develop methods requiring a minimum of test material. Pure standards for many of the marine toxins are scarce. Reduced sample requirements extend the utility of detection methods in research and forensic applications as well. In the past, there was much reliance on the animal bioassay; however, this dependence hopefully will be reduced as newer instrumental techniques (chromatographic, mass spectrometric, electrophoretic), biochemical (immunochemical, receptor site assay), and cell bioassay methods are developed with a higher degree of precision and specificity. It is beneficial that a multiplicity of methods be available to detect marine toxins in seafoods. Each method has unique advantages and disadvantages.

  13. Toxin-Deficient Mutants from a Toxin-Sensitive Transformant of Cochliobolus Heterostrophus

    PubMed Central

    Yang, G.; Turgeon, B. G.; Yoder, O. C.

    1994-01-01

    Tox1 is the only genetic element identified which controls production of T-toxin, a linear polyketide involved in the virulence of Cochliobolus heterostrophus to its host plant, corn. Previous attempts to induce toxin-deficient (Tox(-)) mutants, using conventional mutagenesis and screening procedures, have been unsuccessful. As a strategy to enrich for Tox(-) mutants, we constructed a Tox1(+) strain that carried the corn T-urf13 gene (which confers T-toxin sensitivity) fused to a fungal mitochondrial signal sequence; the fusion was under control of the inducible Aspergillus nidulans pelA promoter which, in both A. nidulans and C. heterostrophus, is repressed by glucose and induced by polygalacturonic acid (PGA). We expected that a transformant carrying this construction would be sensitive to its own toxin when the T-urf13 gene was expressed. Indeed, the strain grew normally on medium containing glucose but was inhibited on medium containing PGA. Conidia of this strain were treated with ethylmethanesulfonate and plated on PGA medium. Among 362 survivors, 9 were defective in T-toxin production. Authenticity of each mutant was established by the presence of the transformation vector, proper mating type, and a restiction fragment length polymorphism tightly linked to the Tox1(+) locus. Progeny of each mutant crossed to a Tox1(+) tester segregated 1:1 (for wild type toxin production vs. no or reduced toxin production), indicating a single gene mutation in each case. Progeny of each mutant crossed to a Tox1(-) tester segregated 1 : 1 (for no toxin production vs. no or reduced toxin production) indicating that each mutation mapped at the Tox1 locus. Availability of Tox(-) mutants will permit mapping in the Tox1 region without interference from a known Tox1 linked translocation breakpoint. PMID:8088521

  14. Type Ia Progenitor Hunt in Ancient Remnants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kerzendorf, Wolfgang E.

    2013-01-01

    There is broad agreement that the stars which explode as Type Ia supernovae are white dwarfs. They have accreted material in a binary system until they are near the Chandrasekhar mass and detonate/deflagrate. The two main scenarios for this accretion process are merging with a companion white dwarf (double degenerate scenario), or accretion from a main-sequence to red giant donor (single degenerate scenario). The donor star survives post-explosion and would provide substantial evidence for the single degenerate scenario, if found. Our team is analyzing stars in close proximity to Galactic Type Ia remnants to find surviving donor stars. In my talk I will introduce the different progenitor systems and the expected state for a donor star today. I will outline our search using high resolution spectroscopy and will present updated results.

  15. Progenitor model of cosmic ray knee

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bijay, Biplab; Bhadra, Arunava

    2016-01-01

    The primary energy spectrum of cosmic rays exhibits a knee at about 3 PeV where a change in the spectral index occurs. Despite many efforts, the origin of such a feature in the spectrum is not satisfactorily solved yet. Here it is proposed that the steepening of the spectrum beyond the knee may be a consequence of the mass distribution of the progenitor of the cosmic ray source. The proposed speculative model can account for all the major observed features of cosmic rays without invoking any fine tuning to match flux or spectra at any energy point. The prediction of the proposed model regarding the primary composition scenario beyond the knee is quite different from most of the prevailing models of the knee, and thereby can be discriminated from precise experimental measurement of the primary composition.

  16. New approaches to SNe Ia progenitors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruiz-Lapuente, Pilar

    2014-10-01

    Although Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) are a major tool in cosmology and play a key role in the chemical evolution of galaxies, the nature of their progenitor systems (apart from the fact that they must content at least one white dwarf, that explodes) remains largely unknown. In the last decade, considerable efforts have been made, both observationally and theoretically, to solve this problem. Observations have, however, revealed a previously unsuspected variety of events, ranging from very underluminous outbursts to clearly overluminous ones, and spanning a range well outside the peak luminosity-decline rate of the light curve relationship, used to make calibrated candles of the SNe Ia. On the theoretical side, new explosion scenarios, such as violent mergings of pairs of white dwarfs, have been explored. We review those recent developments, emphasizing the new observational findings, but also trying to tie them to the different scenarios and explosion mechanisms proposed thus far.

  17. Multipotent pancreas progenitors: Inconclusive but pivotal topic.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Fang-Xu; Morahan, Grant

    2015-12-26

    The establishment of multipotent pancreas progenitors (MPP) should have a significant impact not only on the ontology of the pancreas, but also for the translational research of glucose-responding endocrine β-cells. Deficiency of the latter may lead to the pandemic type 1 or type 2 diabetes mellitus, a metabolic disorder. An ideal treatment of which would potentially be the replacement of destroyed or failed β-cells, by restoring function of endogenous pancreatic endocrine cells or by transplantation of donor islets or in vitro generated insulin-secreting cells. Thus, considerable research efforts have been devoted to identify MPP candidates in the pre- and post-natal pancreas for the endogenous neogenesis or regeneration of endocrine insulin-secreting cells. In order to advance this inconclusive but critical field, we here review the emerging concepts, recent literature and newest developments of potential MPP and propose measures that would assist its forward progression. PMID:26730269

  18. PET imaging of adoptive progenitor cell therapies.

    SciTech Connect

    Gelovani, Juri G.

    2008-05-13

    Objectives. The overall objective of this application is to develop novel technologies for non-invasive imaging of adoptive stem cell-based therapies with positron emission tomography (PET) that would be applicable to human patients. To achieve this objective, stem cells will be genetically labeled with a PET-reporter gene and repetitively imaged to assess their distribution, migration, differentiation, and persistence using a radiolabeled reporter probe. This new imaging technology will be tested in adoptive progenitor cell-based therapy models in animals, including: delivery pro-apoptotic genes to tumors, and T-cell reconstitution for immunostimulatory therapy during allogeneic bone marrow progenitor cell transplantation. Technical and Scientific Merits. Non-invasive whole body imaging would significantly aid in the development and clinical implementation of various adoptive progenitor cell-based therapies by providing the means for non-invasive monitoring of the fate of injected progenitor cells over a long period of observation. The proposed imaging approaches could help to address several questions related to stem cell migration and homing, their long-term viability, and their subsequent differentiation. The ability to image these processes non-invasively in 3D and repetitively over a long period of time is very important and will help the development and clinical application of various strategies to control and direct stem cell migration and differentiation. Approach to accomplish the work. Stem cells will be genetically with a reporter gene which will allow for repetitive non-invasive “tracking” of the migration and localization of genetically labeled stem cells and their progeny. This is a radically new approach that is being developed for future human applications and should allow for a long term (many years) repetitive imaging of the fate of tissues that develop from the transplanted stem cells. Why the approach is appropriate. The novel approach to

  19. Multipotent pancreas progenitors: Inconclusive but pivotal topic

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Fang-Xu; Morahan, Grant

    2015-01-01

    The establishment of multipotent pancreas progenitors (MPP) should have a significant impact not only on the ontology of the pancreas, but also for the translational research of glucose-responding endocrine β-cells. Deficiency of the latter may lead to the pandemic type 1 or type 2 diabetes mellitus, a metabolic disorder. An ideal treatment of which would potentially be the replacement of destroyed or failed β-cells, by restoring function of endogenous pancreatic endocrine cells or by transplantation of donor islets or in vitro generated insulin-secreting cells. Thus, considerable research efforts have been devoted to identify MPP candidates in the pre- and post-natal pancreas for the endogenous neogenesis or regeneration of endocrine insulin-secreting cells. In order to advance this inconclusive but critical field, we here review the emerging concepts, recent literature and newest developments of potential MPP and propose measures that would assist its forward progression. PMID:26730269

  20. Galaxies, their satellites and progenitors: chemical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gargiulo, I.; Cora, S. A.; Padilla, N. D.

    We use a model that combines N-body cosmological simulations of galaxy clusters and a semi-analytic model of galaxy formation (SAG: Semi-analytical galaxies; Lagos, Cora & Padilla, 2008) in order to study the properties of galaxy progenitors, using the information provided by their stellar haloes, and surviving satellites at redshift z = 0. We model the formation of stellar haloes by considering tidal stripping events acting on the satellite galaxies before the mergers occur, being able to follow their mass, luminosity and chemical properties. We find that the satellite galaxies have lower metal- licities than the stellar haloes of central galaxies for a given host DM halo mass, as has been already noted by Lagos, Padilla & Cora (2009), using a different approach.

  1. ANALYSES OF WOUND EXUDATES FOR CLOSTRIDIAL TOXINS.

    PubMed

    NOYES, H E; PRITCHARD, W L; BRINKLEY, F B; MENDELSON, J A

    1964-03-01

    Noyes, Howard E. (Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington, D.C.), William L. Pritchard, Floyd B. Brinkley, and Janice A. Mendelson. Analyses of wound exudates for clostridial toxins. J. Bacteriol. 87:623-629. 1964.-Earlier studies indicated that death of goats with traumatic wounds of the hindquarter could be related to the number of clostridia in the wounds, and that toxicity of wound exudates for mice and guinea pigs could be partially neutralized by commercial trivalent gas gangrene antitoxin. This report describes in vitro and in vivo analyses of wound exudates for known clostridial toxins. Wounds were produced by detonation of high-explosive pellets. Wound exudates were obtained by cold saline extraction of both necrotic tissues and gauze sponges used to cover the wounds. Exudates were sterilized by Seitz filtration in the cold. In vitro tests were used to measure alpha-, theta-, and mu-toxins of Clostridium perfringens and the epsilon-toxin of C. novyi. Mouse protection tests, employing commercial typing antisera, were used to analyze exudates for other clostridial toxins. Lethality of wound exudates for mice could be related to (i) the numbers of clostridia present in the wound, (ii) survival time of the goats, and (iii) positive lecithovitellin (LV) tests of the exudates. However, the LV tests could not be neutralized by antitoxin specific for C. perfringens alpha-toxin. Mice were not protected by typing antisera specific for types A, C, or D C. perfringens or C. septicum but were protected by antisera specific for type B C. perfringens and types A and B C. novyi. PMID:14127581

  2. Redefining endothelial progenitor cells via clonal analysis and hematopoietic stem/progenitor cell principals

    PubMed Central

    Mead, Laura E.; Prater, Daniel; Krier, Theresa R.; Mroueh, Karim N.; Li, Fang; Krasich, Rachel; Temm, Constance J.; Prchal, Josef T.

    2007-01-01

    The limited vessel-forming capacity of infused endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) into patients with cardiovascular dysfunction may be related to a misunderstanding of the biologic potential of the cells. EPCs are generally identified by cell surface antigen expression or counting in a commercially available kit that identifies “endothelial cell colony-forming units” (CFU-ECs). However, the origin, proliferative potential, and differentiation capacity of CFU-ECs is controversial. In contrast, other EPCs with blood vessel-forming ability, termed endothelial colony-forming cells (ECFCs), have been isolated from human peripheral blood. We compared the function of CFU-ECs and ECFCs and determined that CFU-ECs are derived from the hematopoietic system using progenitor assays, and analysis of donor cells from polycythemia vera patients harboring a Janus kinase 2 V617F mutation in hematopoietic stem cell clones. Further, CFU-ECs possess myeloid progenitor cell activity, differentiate into phagocytic macrophages, and fail to form perfused vessels in vivo. In contrast, ECFCs are clonally distinct from CFU-ECs, display robust proliferative potential, and form perfused vessels in vivo. Thus, these studies establish that CFU-ECs are not EPCs and the role of these cells in angiogenesis must be re-examined prior to further clinical trials, whereas ECFCs may serve as a potential therapy for vascular regeneration. PMID:17053059

  3. Redefining endothelial progenitor cells via clonal analysis and hematopoietic stem/progenitor cell principals.

    PubMed

    Yoder, Mervin C; Mead, Laura E; Prater, Daniel; Krier, Theresa R; Mroueh, Karim N; Li, Fang; Krasich, Rachel; Temm, Constance J; Prchal, Josef T; Ingram, David A

    2007-03-01

    The limited vessel-forming capacity of infused endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) into patients with cardiovascular dysfunction may be related to a misunderstanding of the biologic potential of the cells. EPCs are generally identified by cell surface antigen expression or counting in a commercially available kit that identifies "endothelial cell colony-forming units" (CFU-ECs). However, the origin, proliferative potential, and differentiation capacity of CFU-ECs is controversial. In contrast, other EPCs with blood vessel-forming ability, termed endothelial colony-forming cells (ECFCs), have been isolated from human peripheral blood. We compared the function of CFU-ECs and ECFCs and determined that CFU-ECs are derived from the hematopoietic system using progenitor assays, and analysis of donor cells from polycythemia vera patients harboring a Janus kinase 2 V617F mutation in hematopoietic stem cell clones. Further, CFU-ECs possess myeloid progenitor cell activity, differentiate into phagocytic macrophages, and fail to form perfused vessels in vivo. In contrast, ECFCs are clonally distinct from CFU-ECs, display robust proliferative potential, and form perfused vessels in vivo. Thus, these studies establish that CFU-ECs are not EPCs and the role of these cells in angiogenesis must be re-examined prior to further clinical trials, whereas ECFCs may serve as a potential therapy for vascular regeneration. PMID:17053059

  4. A COMPREHENSIVE PROGENITOR MODEL FOR SNe Ia

    SciTech Connect

    Meng, X.; Yang, W.

    2010-02-20

    Although the nature of the progenitor of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) is still unclear, the single-degenerate (SD) channel for the progenitor is currently accepted, in which a carbon-oxygen white dwarf (CO WD) accretes hydrogen-rich material from its companion, increases its mass to the Chandrasekhar mass limit, and then explodes as an SN Ia. The companion may be a main sequence or a slightly evolved star (WD + MS), or a red giant star (WD + RG). Incorporating the effect of mass stripping and accretion-disk instability on the evolution of the WD binary, we carried out binary stellar evolution calculations for more than 1600 close WD binaries. As a result, the initial parameter spaces for SNe Ia are presented in an orbital period-secondary mass (log P{sub i}, M {sup i}{sub 2}) plane. We confirmed that in a WD + MS system, the initial companion leading to SNe Ia may have mass from 1 M{sub sun} to 5 M{sub sun}. The initial WD mass for SNe Ia from WD + MS channel is as low as 0.565 M{sub sun}, while the lowest WD mass from the WD + RG channel is 1.0 M{sub sun}. Adopting the above results, we studied the birth rate of SNe Ia via a binary population synthesis approach. We found that the Galactic SNe Ia birth rate from SD model is (2.55-2.9) x 10{sup -3} yr{sup -1} (including WD + He star channel), which is slightly smaller than that from observation. If a single starburst is assumed, the distribution of the delay time of SNe Ia from the SD model may be a weak bimodality, where WD + He channel contributes to SNe Ia with delay time shorter than 10{sup 8} yr and WD + RG channel to those with age longer than 6 Gyr.

  5. Marine Toxins Targeting Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Arias, Hugo R.

    2006-01-01

    This introductory minireview points out the importance of ion channels for cell communication. The basic concepts on the structure and function of ion channels triggered by membrane voltage changes, the so-called voltage-gated ion channels (VGICs), as well as those activated by neurotransmitters, the so-called ligand-gated ion channel (LGICs), are introduced. Among the most important VGIC superfamiles, we can name the voltage-gated Na+ (NaV), Ca2+ (CaV), and K+ (KV) channels. Among the most important LGIC super families, we can include the Cys-loop or nicotinicoid, the glutamate-activated (GluR), and the ATP-activated (P2XnR) receptor superfamilies. Ion channels are transmembrane proteins that allow the passage of different ions in a specific or unspecific manner. For instance, the activation of NaV, CaV, or KV channels opens a pore that is specific for Na+, Ca2+, or K+, respectively. On the other hand, the activation of certain LGICs such as nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, GluRs, and P2XnRs allows the passage of cations (e.g., Na+, K+, and/or Ca2+), whereas the activation of other LGICs such as type A γ-butyric acid and glycine receptors allows the passage of anions (e.g., Cl− and/or HCO3−). In this regard, the activation of NaV and CaV as well as ligand-gated cation channels produce membrane depolarization, which finally leads to stimulatory effects in the cell, whereas the activation of KV as well as ligand-gated anion channels induce membrane hyperpolarization that finally leads to inhibitory effects in the cell. The importance of these ion channel superfamilies is emphasized by considering their physiological functions throughout the body as well as their pathophysiological implicance in several neuronal diseases. In this regard, natural molecules, and especially marine toxins, can be potentially used as modulators (e.g., inhibitors or prolongers) of ion channel functions to treat or to alleviate a specific ion channel-linked disease (e

  6. Bacterial Toxins and the Nervous System: Neurotoxins and Multipotential Toxins Interacting with Neuronal Cells

    PubMed Central

    Popoff, Michel R.; Poulain, Bernard

    2010-01-01

    Toxins are potent molecules used by various bacteria to interact with a host organism. Some of them specifically act on neuronal cells (clostridial neurotoxins) leading to characteristics neurological affections. But many other toxins are multifunctional and recognize a wider range of cell types including neuronal cells. Various enterotoxins interact with the enteric nervous system, for example by stimulating afferent neurons or inducing neurotransmitter release from enterochromaffin cells which result either in vomiting, in amplification of the diarrhea, or in intestinal inflammation process. Other toxins can pass the blood brain barrier and directly act on specific neurons. PMID:22069606

  7. Natural toxins for use in pest management.

    PubMed

    Duke, Stephen O; Cantrell, Charles L; Meepagala, Kumudini M; Wedge, David E; Tabanca, Nurhayat; Schrader, Kevin K

    2010-08-01

    Natural toxins are a source of new chemical classes of pesticides, as well as environmentally and toxicologically safer molecules than many of the currently used pesticides. Furthermore, they often have molecular target sites that are not exploited by currently marketed pesticides. There are highly successful products based on natural compounds in the major pesticide classes. These include the herbicide glufosinate (synthetic phosphinothricin), the spinosad insecticides, and the strobilurin fungicides. These and other examples of currently marketed natural product-based pesticides, as well as natural toxins that show promise as pesticides from our own research are discussed. PMID:22069667

  8. Impact of CDT Toxin on Human Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Faïs, Tiphanie; Delmas, Julien; Serres, Arnaud; Bonnet, Richard; Dalmasso, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) is found in Gram-negative bacteria, especially in certain Proteobacteria such as the Pasteurellaceae family, including Haemophilus ducreyi and Aggregatibacter (Actinobacillus) actinomycetemcomitans, in the Enterobacteriaceae family and the Campylobacterales order, including the Campylobacter and Helicobacter species. In vitro and in vivo studies have clearly shown that this toxin has a strong effect on cellular physiology (inflammation, immune response modulation, tissue damage). Some works even suggest a potential involvement of CDT in cancers. In this review, we will discuss these different aspects. PMID:27429000

  9. Impact of CDT Toxin on Human Diseases.

    PubMed

    Faïs, Tiphanie; Delmas, Julien; Serres, Arnaud; Bonnet, Richard; Dalmasso, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) is found in Gram-negative bacteria, especially in certain Proteobacteria such as the Pasteurellaceae family, including Haemophilus ducreyi and Aggregatibacter (Actinobacillus) actinomycetemcomitans, in the Enterobacteriaceae family and the Campylobacterales order, including the Campylobacter and Helicobacter species. In vitro and in vivo studies have clearly shown that this toxin has a strong effect on cellular physiology (inflammation, immune response modulation, tissue damage). Some works even suggest a potential involvement of CDT in cancers. In this review, we will discuss these different aspects. PMID:27429000

  10. Regulation of Toxin Production in Clostridium perfringens

    PubMed Central

    Ohtani, Kaori; Shimizu, Tohru

    2016-01-01

    The Gram-positive anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens is widely distributed in nature, especially in soil and the gastrointestinal tracts of humans and animals. C. perfringens causes gas gangrene and food poisoning, and it produces extracellular enzymes and toxins that are thought to act synergistically and contribute to its pathogenesis. A complicated regulatory network of toxin genes has been reported that includes a two-component system for regulatory RNA and cell-cell communication. It is necessary to clarify the global regulatory system of these genes in order to understand and treat the virulence of C. perfringens. We summarize the existing knowledge about the regulatory mechanisms here. PMID:27399773

  11. Natural Toxins for Use in Pest Management

    PubMed Central

    Duke, Stephen O.; Cantrell, Charles L.; Meepagala, Kumudini M.; Wedge, David E.; Tabanca, Nurhayat; Schrader, Kevin K.

    2010-01-01

    Natural toxins are a source of new chemical classes of pesticides, as well as environmentally and toxicologically safer molecules than many of the currently used pesticides. Furthermore, they often have molecular target sites that are not exploited by currently marketed pesticides. There are highly successful products based on natural compounds in the major pesticide classes. These include the herbicide glufosinate (synthetic phosphinothricin), the spinosad insecticides, and the strobilurin fungicides. These and other examples of currently marketed natural product-based pesticides, as well as natural toxins that show promise as pesticides from our own research are discussed. PMID:22069667

  12. Streptococcal toxins: role in pathogenesis and disease.

    PubMed

    Barnett, Timothy C; Cole, Jason N; Rivera-Hernandez, Tania; Henningham, Anna; Paton, James C; Nizet, Victor; Walker, Mark J

    2015-12-01

    Group A Streptococcus (Streptococcus pyogenes), group B Streptococcus (Streptococcus agalactiae) and Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) are host-adapted bacterial pathogens among the leading infectious causes of human morbidity and mortality. These microbes and related members of the genus Streptococcus produce an array of toxins that act against human cells or tissues, resulting in impaired immune responses and subversion of host physiological processes to benefit the invading microorganism. This toxin repertoire includes haemolysins, proteases, superantigens and other agents that ultimately enhance colonization and survival within the host and promote dissemination of the pathogen. PMID:26433203

  13. The dynamics of murine mammary stem/progenitor cells

    PubMed Central

    DONG, Qiaoxiang; SUN, Lu-Zhe

    2014-01-01

    The stem/progenitor cells in the murine mammary gland are a highly dynamic population of cells that are responsible for ductal elongation in puberty, homeostasis maintenance in adult, and lobulo-alveolar genesis during pregnancy. In recent years understanding the epithelial cell hierarchy within the mammary gland is becoming particularly important as these different stem/progenitor cells were perceived to be the cells of origin for various subtypes of breast cancer. Although significant advances have been made in enrichment and isolation of stem/progenitor cells by combinations of antibodies against cell surface proteins together with flow cytometry, and in identification of stem/progenitor cells with multi-lineage differentiation and self-renewal using mammary fat pad reconstitution assay and in vivo genetic labeling technique, a clear understanding of how these different stem/progenitors are orchestrated in the mammary gland is still lacking. Here we discuss the different in vivo and in vitro methods currently available for stem/progenitor identification, their associated caveats, and a possible new hierarchy model to reconcile various putative stem/progenitor cell populations identified by different research groups. PMID:25580105

  14. Caspase-1 mediates hyperlipidemia-weakened progenitor cell vessel repair

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ya-Feng; Huang, Xiao; Li, Xinyuan; Gong, Ren; Yin, Ying; Nelson, Jun; Gao, Erhe; Zhang, Hongyu; Hoffman, Nicholas E.; Houser, Steven R.; Madesh, Muniswamy; Tilley, Douglas G.; Choi, Eric T.; Jiang, Xiaohua; Huang, Cong-Xin; Wang, Hong; Yang, Xiao-Feng

    2015-01-01

    Caspase-1 activation senses metabolic danger-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) and mediates the initiation of inflammation in endothelial cells. Here, we examined whether the caspase-1 pathway is responsible for sensing hyperlipidemia as a DAMP in bone marrow (BM)-derived Stem cell antigen-1 positive (Sca-1+) stem/progenitor cells and weakening their angiogenic ability. Using biochemical methods, gene knockout, cell therapy and myocardial infarction (MI) models, we had the following findings: 1) Hyperlipidemia induces caspase-1 activity in mouse Sca-1+ progenitor cells in vivo; 2) Caspase-1 contributes to hyperlipidemia-induced modulation of vascular cell death-related gene expression in vivo; 3) Injection of Sca-1+ progenitor cells from caspase-1−/− mice improves endothelial capillary density in heart and decreases cardiomyocyte death in a mouse model of MI; and 4) Caspase-1−/− Sca-1+ progenitor cell therapy improves mouse cardiac function after MI. Our results provide insight on how hyperlipidemia activates caspase-1 in Sca-1+ progenitor cells, which subsequently weakens Sca-1+ progenitor cell repair of vasculature injury. These results demonstrate the therapeutic potential of caspase-1 inhibition in improving progenitor cell therapy for MI. PMID:26709768

  15. Kinetic evidence for different mechanisms of interaction of black mamba toxins MT alpha and MT beta with muscarinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Jolkkonen, M; Oras, A; Toomela, T; Karlsson, E; Järv, J; Akerman, K E

    2001-01-01

    By studying the influence of two toxins from the black mamba Dendroaspis polylepis on the kinetics of [3H]-N-methylscopolamine binding to muscarinic acetylcholine receptors from rat cerebral cortex, it was revealed that these toxins, MT alpha and MT beta, interact with the receptors via kinetically distinct mechanisms. MT beta bound to receptors in a one-step, readily reversible process with the dissociation constant K(d)=5.3 microM. The binding mechanism of MTalpha was more complex, involving at least two consecutive steps. A fast receptor-toxin complex formation (K(T)=3.8 microM) was followed by a slow process of isomerisation of this complex (k(i)=1.8 x 10(-2) s(-1), half-time 39 s). A similar two-step interaction mechanism has been established for a related toxin, MT2 from the green mamba D. angusticeps (K(T)=1.4 microM, k(i)=8.3 x 10(-4) s(-1), half-time 840 s). The slow isomerisation process delays the effect of MT alpha and MT2, but increases their apparent potency compared to toxins unable to induce the isomerisation process. PMID:10978757

  16. Identification of a Multipotent Self-Renewing Stromal Progenitor Population during Mammalian Kidney Organogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Kobayashi, Akio; Mugford, Joshua W.; Krautzberger, A. Michaela; Naiman, Natalie; Liao, Jessica; McMahon, Andrew P.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The mammalian kidney is a complex organ consisting of multiple cell types. We previously showed that the Six2-expressing cap mesenchyme is a multipotent self-renewing progenitor population for the main body of the nephron, the basic functional unit of the kidney. However, the cellular mechanisms establishing stromal tissues are less clear. We demonstrate that the Foxd1-expressing cortical stroma represents a distinct multipotent self-renewing progenitor population that gives rise to stromal tissues of the interstitium, mesangium, and pericytes throughout kidney organogenesis. Fate map analysis of Foxd1-expressing cells demonstrates that a small subset of these cells contributes to Six2-expressing cells at the early stage of kidney outgrowth. Thereafter, there appears to be a strict nephron and stromal lineage boundary derived from Six2-expressing and Foxd1-expressing cell types, respectively. Taken together, our observations suggest that distinct multipotent self-renewing progenitor populations coordinate cellular differentiation of the nephron epithelium and renal stroma during mammalian kidney organogenesis. PMID:25358792

  17. Identification of a multipotent self-renewing stromal progenitor population during mammalian kidney organogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Akio; Mugford, Joshua W; Krautzberger, A Michaela; Naiman, Natalie; Liao, Jessica; McMahon, Andrew P

    2014-10-14

    The mammalian kidney is a complex organ consisting of multiple cell types. We previously showed that the Six2-expressing cap mesenchyme is a multipotent self-renewing progenitor population for the main body of the nephron, the basic functional unit of the kidney. However, the cellular mechanisms establishing stromal tissues are less clear. We demonstrate that the Foxd1-expressing cortical stroma represents a distinct multipotent self-renewing progenitor population that gives rise to stromal tissues of the interstitium, mesangium, and pericytes throughout kidney organogenesis. Fate map analysis of Foxd1-expressing cells demonstrates that a small subset of these cells contributes to Six2-expressing cells at the early stage of kidney outgrowth. Thereafter, there appears to be a strict nephron and stromal lineage boundary derived from Six2-expressing and Foxd1-expressing cell types, respectively. Taken together, our observations suggest that distinct multipotent self-renewing progenitor populations coordinate cellular differentiation of the nephron epithelium and renal stroma during mammalian kidney organogenesis. PMID:25358792

  18. Hhex is Required at Multiple Stages of Adult Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cell Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Goodings, Charnise; Smith, Elizabeth; Mathias, Elizabeth; Elliott, Natalina; Cleveland, Susan M.; Tripathi, Rati M.; Layer, Justin H.; Chen, Xi; Guo, Yan; Shyr, Yu; Hamid, Rizwan; Du, Yang; Davé, Utpal P.

    2015-01-01

    Hhex encodes a homeodomain transcription factor that is widely expressed in hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell populations. Its enforced expression induces T-cell leukemia and we have implicated it as an important oncogene in early T-cell precursor leukemias where it is immediately downstream of an LMO2-associated protein complex. Conventional Hhex knockouts cause embryonic lethality precluding analysis of adult hematopoiesis. Thus, we induced highly efficient conditional knockout (cKO) using vav-Cre transgenic mice. Hhex cKO mice were viable and born at normal litter sizes. At steady state, we observed a defect in B-cell development that we localized to the earliest B-cell precursor, the pro-B-cell stage. Most remarkably, bone marrow transplantation using Hhex cKO donor cells revealed a more profound defect in all hematopoietic lineages. In contrast, sublethal irradiation resulted in normal myeloid cell repopulation of the bone marrow but markedly impaired repopulation of T- and B-cell compartments. We noted that Hhex cKO stem and progenitor cell populations were skewed in their distribution and showed enhanced proliferation compared to WT cells. Our results implicate Hhex in the maintenance of LT-HSCs and in lineage allocation from multipotent progenitors especially in stress hematopoiesis. PMID:25968920

  19. Human-derived neural progenitors functionally replace astrocytes in adult mice

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Hong; Qian, Kun; Chen, Wei; Hu, Baoyang; Blackbourn, Lisle W.; Du, Zhongwei; Ma, Lixiang; Liu, Huisheng; Knobel, Karla M.; Ayala, Melvin; Zhang, Su-Chun

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are integral components of the homeostatic neural network as well as active participants in pathogenesis of and recovery from nearly all neurological conditions. Evolutionarily, compared with lower vertebrates and nonhuman primates, humans have an increased astrocyte-to-neuron ratio; however, a lack of effective models has hindered the study of the complex roles of human astrocytes in intact adult animals. Here, we demonstrated that after transplantation into the cervical spinal cords of adult mice with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), human pluripotent stem cell–derived (PSC-derived) neural progenitors migrate a long distance and differentiate to astrocytes that nearly replace their mouse counterparts over a 9-month period. The human PSC-derived astrocytes formed networks through their processes, encircled endogenous neurons, and extended end feet that wrapped around blood vessels without altering locomotion behaviors, suggesting structural, and potentially functional, integration into the adult mouse spinal cord. Furthermore, in SCID mice transplanted with neural progenitors derived from induced PSCs from patients with ALS, astrocytes were generated and distributed to a similar degree as that seen in mice transplanted with healthy progenitors; however, these mice exhibited motor deficit, highlighting functional integration of the human-derived astrocytes. Together, these results indicate that this chimeric animal model has potential for further investigating the roles of human astrocytes in disease pathogenesis and repair. PMID:25642771

  20. Tomography of a Gamma-ray Burst Progenitor and its Host Galaxy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Castro-Tirado, Alberto J.; Moller, Palle; Garcia-Segura, Guillermo; Gorosabel, Javier; Perez, Enrique; deUgartePostigo, Antonio; Solano, Enrique; BarradoyNavascues, David; CastroCeron, Jose Marie; Kouveliotou, Chryssa

    2005-01-01

    We have obtained near-infrared and high-resolution optical spectroscopy of the bright afterglow of the very intense gamma-ray burst recorded on 2002, October 4 (GRB 021004). Besides of line emission in the near-IR allowing an independent measurement of the systemic redshift (z = 2.3304 plus or minus 0.0005), we find several absorption line groups spanning a range of about 3,000 kilometers per second in velocity relative to the redshift of the host galaxy. The absorption profiles are very complex with both velocity-broadened components extending over several 100 kilometers per second and narrow lines with velocity widths of only approximately 20 kilometers per second. By analogy with QSO absorption line studies, the relative velocities, widths, and degrees of ionization of the lines ("line-locking", "ionization-velocity correlation") show that the progenitor had both an extremely strong radiation field and several distinct mass loss phases (winds). These results are consistent with GRB progenitors being massive stars, such as Luminous Blue Variables (LBVs) or Wolf-Rayet stars, providing a detailed picture of the spatial and velocity structure of the GRB progenitor star at the time of explosion. The host galaxy is a prolific star-forming galaxy with a SFR of approximately 10 solar mass yr(sup -l).

  1. Thyroid hormone accelerates the differentiation of adult hippocampal progenitors.

    PubMed

    Kapoor, R; Desouza, L A; Nanavaty, I N; Kernie, S G; Vaidya, V A

    2012-09-01

    Disrupted thyroid hormone function evokes severe physiological consequences in the immature brain. In adulthood, although clinical reports document an effect of thyroid hormone status on mood and cognition, the molecular and cellular changes underlying these behavioural effects are poorly understood. More recently, the subtle effects of thyroid hormone on structural plasticity in the mature brain, in particular on adult hippocampal neurogenesis, have come to be appreciated. However, the specific stages of adult hippocampal progenitor development that are sensitive to thyroid hormone are not defined. Using nestin-green fluorescent protein reporter mice, we demonstrate that thyroid hormone mediates its effects on hippocampal neurogenesis by influencing Type 2b and Type 3 progenitors, although it does not alter proliferation of either the Type 1 quiescent progenitor or the Type 2a amplifying neural progenitor. Thyroid hormone increases the number of doublecortin (DCX)-positive Type 3 progenitors, and accelerates neuronal differentiation into both DCX-positive immature neurones and neuronal nuclei-positive granule cell neurones. Furthermore, we show that this increase in neuronal differentiation is accompanied by a significant induction of specific transcription factors involved in hippocampal progenitor differentiation. In vitro studies using the neurosphere assay support a direct effect of thyroid hormone on progenitor development because neurospheres treated with thyroid hormone are shifted to a more differentiated state. Taken together, our results indicate that thyroid hormone mediates its neurogenic effects via targeting Type 2b and Type 3 hippocampal progenitors, and suggests a role for proneural transcription factors in contributing to the effects of thyroid hormone on neuronal differentiation of adult hippocampal progenitors. PMID:22497336

  2. PDL Progenitor-Mediated PDL Recovery Contributes to Orthodontic Relapse.

    PubMed

    Feng, L; Yang, R; Liu, D; Wang, X; Song, Y; Cao, H; He, D; Gan, Y; Kou, X; Zhou, Y

    2016-08-01

    Periodontal ligament (PDL) is subjected to mechanical force during physiologic activities. PDL stem /: progenitor cells are the main mesenchymal stem cells in PDL. However, how PDL progenitors participate in PDL homeostasis upon and after mechanical force is largely unknown. In this study, force-triggered orthodontic tooth movement and the following relapse were used as models to demonstrate the response of PDL progenitors and their role in PDL remodeling upon and after mechanical force. Upon orthodontic force, PDL collagen on the compression side significantly degraded, showing a broken and disorganized pattern. After force withdrawal, the degraded PDL collagen recovered during the early stage of relapse. Correspondingly, increased CD90(+) PDL progenitors with suppressed expression of type I collagen (Col-I) were observed upon orthodontic force, whereas these cells accumulated at the degradation regions and regained Col-I expression after force withdrawal during early relapse. Our results further showed that compressive force altered cell morphology and repressed collagen expression in cultured PDL progenitors, which both recovered after force withdrawal. Force withdrawal-induced recovery of collagen expression in cultured PDL progenitors could be regulated by transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β), a key molecule for tissue homeostasis and extracellular matrix remodeling. More interesting, inhibiting the regained Col-I expression in CD90(+) PDL progenitors by blocking TGF-β interrupted PDL collagen recovery and partially inhibited the early relapse. These data suggest that PDL progenitors can respond to mechanical force and may process intrinsic stability to recover to original status after force withdrawal. PDL progenitors with intrinsic stability are required for PDL recovery and consequently contribute to early orthodontic relapse, which can be regulated by TGF-β signaling. PMID:27161015

  3. EFFECTS OF MARINE ALGAL TOXINS ON THERMOREGULATION IN MICE.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Hypothermia is often seen in mice and rats exposed acutely to marine algal toxins, but the mechanism of action of these toxins on thermoregulation is not well understood. Our laboratory has assessed the thermoregulatory mechanisms of two marine algal toxins, maitotoxin and brevet...

  4. Pore-forming activity of clostridial binary toxins.

    PubMed

    Knapp, O; Benz, R; Popoff, M R

    2016-03-01

    Clostridial binary toxins (Clostridium perfringens Iota toxin, Clostridium difficile transferase, Clostridium spiroforme toxin, Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin) as Bacillus binary toxins, including Bacillus anthracis toxins consist of two independent proteins, one being the binding component which mediates the internalization into cell of the intracellularly active component. Clostridial binary toxins induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through mono-ADP-ribosylation of globular actin and are responsible for enteric diseases. Clostridial and Bacillus binary toxins share structurally and functionally related binding components which recognize specific cell receptors, oligomerize, form pores in endocytic vesicle membrane, and mediate the transport of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Binding components retain the global structure of pore-forming toxins (PFTs) from the cholesterol-dependent cytotoxin family such as perfringolysin. However, their pore-forming activity notably that of clostridial binding components is more related to that of heptameric PFT family including aerolysin and C. perfringens epsilon toxin. This review focuses upon pore-forming activity of clostridial binary toxins compared to other related PFTs. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Pore-Forming Toxins edited by Mauro Dalla Serra and Franco Gambale. PMID:26278641

  5. Draft Genome Sequences of Exfoliative Toxin A-Producing Staphylococcus aureus Strains B-7772 and B-7777 (CC8/ST2993) and B-7774 (CC15/ST2126), Isolated in a Maternity Hospital in the Central Federal District of Russia

    PubMed Central

    Skryabin, Yury; Kislichkina, Angelina; Bogun, Alexandr; Korobova, Olga; Mayskaya, Nadezhda; Shemyakin, Igor; Dyatlov, Ivan

    2016-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus clonal complex 8 (CC8) has not been associated with staphylococcal scalded-skin syndrome (SSSS) in newborns and exfoliative toxin genes. Here, we report the draft genome sequences of exfoliative toxin A-producing B-7772, B-7777 (both CC8), and B-7774 (CC15) strains associated with SSSS in newborns. PMID:26941146

  6. YoeB toxin is activated during thermal stress.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Brian D; Garza-Sánchez, Fernando; Hayes, Christopher S

    2015-08-01

    Type II toxin-antitoxin (TA) modules are thought to mediate stress-responses by temporarily suppressing protein synthesis while cells redirect transcription to adapt to environmental change. Here, we show that YoeB, a ribosome-dependent mRNase toxin, is activated in Escherichia coli cells grown at elevated temperatures. YoeB activation is dependent on Lon protease, suggesting that thermal stress promotes increased degradation of the YefM antitoxin. Though YefM is efficiently degraded in response to Lon overproduction, we find that Lon antigen levels do not increase during heat shock, indicating that another mechanism accounts for temperature-induced YefM proteolysis. These observations suggest that YefM/YoeB functions in adaptation to temperature stress. However, this response is distinct from previously described models of TA function. First, YoeB mRNase activity is maintained over several hours of culture at 42°C, indicating that thermal activation is not transient. Moreover, heat-activated YoeB does not induce growth arrest nor does it suppress global protein synthesis. In fact, E. coli cells proliferate more rapidly at elevated temperatures and instantaneously accelerate their growth rate in response to acute heat shock. We propose that heat-activated YoeB may serve a quality control function, facilitating the recycling of stalled translation complexes through ribosome rescue pathways. PMID:26147890

  7. Different types of toxins targeting TRPV1 in pain.

    PubMed

    Min, Jia-Wei; Liu, Wan-Hong; He, Xiao-Hua; Peng, Bi-Wen

    2013-09-01

    The transient receptor potential vanilloid 1(TRPV1) channels are members of the transient receptor potential (TRP) superfamily. Members of this family are expressed in primary sensory neurons and are best known for their role in nociception and sensory transmission. Multiple painful stimuli can activate these channels. In this review, we discussed the mechanisms of different types of venoms that target TRPV1, such as scorpion venom, botulinum neurotoxin, spider toxin, ciguatera fish poisoning (CFP) and neurotoxic shellfish poisoning (NSP). Some of these toxins activate TRPV1; however, some do not. Regardless of TRPV1 inhibition or activation, they occur through different pathways. For example, BoNT/A decreases TRPV1 expression levels by blocking TRPV1 trafficking to the plasma membrane, although the exact mechanism is still under debate. Vanillotoxins from tarantula (Psalmopoeus cambridgei) are proposed to activate TRPV1 via interaction with a region of TRPV1 that is homologous to voltage-dependent ion channels. Here, we offer a description of the present state of knowledge for this complex subject. PMID:23732125

  8. Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis and Its Dipteran-Specific Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Ben-Dov, Eitan

    2014-01-01

    Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis (Bti) is the first Bacillus thuringiensis to be found and used as an effective biological control agent against larvae of many mosquito and black fly species around the world. Its larvicidal activity resides in four major (of 134, 128, 72 and 27 kDa) and at least two minor (of 78 and 29 kDa) polypeptides encoded respectively by cry4Aa, cry4Ba, cry11Aa, cyt1Aa, cry10Aa and cyt2Ba, all mapped on the 128 kb plasmid known as pBtoxis. These six δ-endotoxins form a complex parasporal crystalline body with remarkably high, specific and different toxicities to Aedes, Culex and Anopheles larvae. Cry toxins are composed of three domains (perforating domain I and receptor binding II and III) and create cation-selective channels, whereas Cyts are composed of one domain that acts as well as a detergent-like membrane perforator. Despite the low toxicities of Cyt1Aa and Cyt2Ba alone against exposed larvae, they are highly synergistic with the Cry toxins and hence their combinations prevent emergence of resistance in the targets. The lack of significant levels of resistance in field mosquito populations treated for decades with Bti-bioinsecticide suggests that this bacterium will be an effective biocontrol agent for years to come. PMID:24686769

  9. YoeB toxin is activated during thermal stress

    PubMed Central

    Janssen, Brian D; Garza-Sánchez, Fernando; Hayes, Christopher S

    2015-01-01

    Type II toxin-antitoxin (TA) modules are thought to mediate stress-responses by temporarily suppressing protein synthesis while cells redirect transcription to adapt to environmental change. Here, we show that YoeB, a ribosome-dependent mRNase toxin, is activated in Escherichia coli cells grown at elevated temperatures. YoeB activation is dependent on Lon protease, suggesting that thermal stress promotes increased degradation of the YefM antitoxin. Though YefM is efficiently degraded in response to Lon overproduction, we find that Lon antigen levels do not increase during heat shock, indicating that another mechanism accounts for temperature-induced YefM proteolysis. These observations suggest that YefM/YoeB functions in adaptation to temperature stress. However, this response is distinct from previously described models of TA function. First, YoeB mRNase activity is maintained over several hours of culture at 42°C, indicating that thermal activation is not transient. Moreover, heat-activated YoeB does not induce growth arrest nor does it suppress global protein synthesis. In fact, E. coli cells proliferate more rapidly at elevated temperatures and instantaneously accelerate their growth rate in response to acute heat shock. We propose that heat-activated YoeB may serve a quality control function, facilitating the recycling of stalled translation complexes through ribosome rescue pathways. PMID:26147890

  10. Surface binding of toxins and heavy metals by probiotics.

    PubMed

    Zoghi, Alaleh; Khosravi-Darani, Kianoush; Sohrabvandi, Sara

    2014-01-01

    Removal of toxic metals and toxins using microbial biomass has been introduced as an inexpensive, new promising method on top of conventional methods for decontamination of food, raw material and concentrated. In this article the potential application of lactic acid bacteria and yeasts as the most familiar probiotics to eliminate, inactivate or reduce bioavailability of contamination in foods and feed has been reviewed. After fast glance to beneficial health effects and preservative properties of lactic acid bacteria, the mechanisms which explain antibacterial and antifungal efficiency as well as their antifungal metabolites are mentioned. Then the article has been focused on potential application of single strain or combination of lactic acid bacteria for removal of heavy metals (copper, lead, cadmium, chromium, arsenic), cyanotoxins (microcystin-LR, -RR, -LF) and mycotoxins (aflatoxin B1, B2, B2a, M1, M2, G1, G2, patulin, ochratoxin A, deoxynivalenol, fumonisin B1 and B2, 3-acetyldeoxynivalenol, deoxynivalenol, fusarenon, nivalenol, diacetoxyscirpenol, HT-2 and T-2 toxin, zearalenone and its derivative, etc) from aqueous solutions in vitro. Wherever possible the mechanism of decontamination and the factors influencing yield of removal are discussed. Some factors which can facilitate metal removal capacity of lactic acid bacteria including the strains, surface charge, pH, temperature, presence of other cations are introduced. The cell wall structure of lactic acid bacteria and yeasts are also introduced for further explanation of mechanism of action in complex binding of probiotic to contaminants and strength of mycotoxin- bacterium interaction. PMID:24329992

  11. PIWI-interacting RNA (piRNA) signatures in human cardiac progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Vella, Serena; Gallo, Alessia; Lo Nigro, Antonio; Galvagno, Daniele; Raffa, Giuseppe Maria; Pilato, Michele; Conaldi, Pier Giulio

    2016-07-01

    Cardiac progenitors, such as cardiospheres and cardiosphere-derived cells, represent an attractive cell source for cardiac regeneration. The PIWI-interacting RNAs, piRNAs, are an intriguing class of small non-coding RNAs, implicated in the regulation of epigenetic state, maintenance of genomic integrity and stem cell functions. Although non-coding RNAs are an exploiting field in cardiovascular research, the piRNA signatures of cardiac progenitors has not been evaluated yet.We profiled, through microarrays, 15,311 piRNAs expressed in cardiospheres, cardiosphere-derived cells and cardiac fibroblasts. Results showed a set of differentially expressed piRNAs (fold change ≥2, p<0.01): 641 piRNAs were upregulated and 1,301 downregulated in the cardiospheres compared to cardiosphere-derived cells, while 255 and 708 piRNAs resulted up- and down-regulated, respectively, if compared to cardiac fibroblasts. We also identified 181 piRNAs that are overexpressed and 129 are downregulated in cardiosphere-derived cells respect to cardiac fibroblasts.Bioinformatics analysis showed that the deregulated piRNAs were mainly distributed on few chromosomes, suggesting that piRNAs are organized in discrete genomic clusters.Furthermore, the bioinformatics search showed that the most upregulated piRNAs target transposons, especially belonged to LINE-1 class, as validated by qRT-PCR. This reduction is also associated to an activation of AKT signaling, which is beneficial for cardiac regeneration.The present study is the first to show a highly consistent piRNA expression pattern for human cardiac progenitors, likely responsible of their different regenerative power. Moreover, this piRNome analysis may provide new methods for characterize cardiac progenitors and may shed new light on the understanding the complex molecular mechanisms of cardiac regeneration. PMID:27131603

  12. L-arginine is a radioprotector for hematopoietic progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Pearce, Linda L; Zheng, Xichen; Martinez-Bosch, Sandra; Kerr, Patrick P; Khlangwiset, Pornsri; Epperly, Michael W; Fink, Mitchell P; Greenberger, Joel S; Peterson, Jim

    2012-06-01

    L-arginine is shown to protect hematopoietic progenitor (32D cl 3) cells from death due to exposure to γ radiation ((137)Cs). Some of the other intermediates in the urea cycle, namely ornithine and citrulline, plus urea itself, were not found to have any significant impact on cell survival after irradiation. Intriguingly, supplementation of irradiated cells with L-arginine results in decreased production of peroxynitrite, suggesting that suppression of superoxide generation by nitric oxide synthase in one or more microenvironments is an important factor in the observed radioprotection. The absence of any radioprotective effect of L-arginine in cells at 3% oxygen also confirms the involvement of one or more oxygen-derived species. Knockdown experiments with nitric oxide synthase (NOS) siRNAs in cells and NOS knockout animals confirm that the observed radioprotection is associated with nNOS (NOS-1). L-arginine also ameliorates the transient inhibition of the electron-transport chain complex I that occurs within 30 min of completing the dose (10 Gy) and that appears to be a functional marker for postirradiation mitochondrial oxidant production. PMID:22175298

  13. l-Arginine is a Radioprotector for Hematopoietic Progenitor Cells

    PubMed Central

    Pearce, Linda L.; Zheng, Xichen; Martinez-Bosch, Sandra; Kerr, Patrick P.; Khlangwiset, Pornsri; Epperly, Michael W.; Fink, Mitchell P.; Greenberger, Joel S.; Peterson, Jim

    2012-01-01

    l-Arginine is shown to protect hematopoietic progenitor (32D cl 3) cells from death due to exposure to γ radiation (137Cs). Some of the other intermediates in the urea cycle, namely ornithine and citrulline, plus urea itself, were not found to have any significant impact on cell survival after irradiation. Intriguingly, supplementation of irradiated cells with l-arginine results in decreased production of peroxynitrite, suggesting that suppression of superoxide generation by nitric oxide synthase in one or more microenvironments is an important factor in the observed radioprotection. The absence of any radioprotective effect of l-arginine in cells at 3% oxygen also confirms the involvement of one or more oxygen-derived species. Knockdown experiments with nitric oxide synthase (NOS) siRNAs in cells and NOS knockout animals confirm that the observed radioprotection is associated with nNOS (NOS-1). l-Arginine also ameliorates the transient inhibition of the electron-transport chain complex I that occurs within 30 min of completing the dose (10 Gy) and that appears to be a functional marker for postirradiation mitochondrial oxidant production. PMID:22175298

  14. Estrogen Stimulates Homing of Endothelial Progenitor Cells to Endometriotic Lesions.

    PubMed

    Rudzitis-Auth, Jeannette; Nenicu, Anca; Nickels, Ruth M; Menger, Michael D; Laschke, Matthias W

    2016-08-01

    The incorporation of endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) into microvessels contributes to the vascularization of endometriotic lesions. Herein, we analyzed whether this vasculogenic process is regulated by estrogen. Estrogen- and vehicle-treated human EPCs were analyzed for migration and tube formation. Endometriotic lesions were induced in irradiated FVB/N mice, which were reconstituted with bone marrow from FVB/N-TgN (Tie2/green fluorescent protein) 287 Sato mice. The animals were treated with 100 μg/kg β-estradiol 17-valerate or vehicle (control) over 7 and 28 days. Lesion growth, cyst formation, homing of green fluorescent protein(+)/Tie2(+) EPCs, vascularization, cell proliferation, and apoptosis were analyzed by high-resolution ultrasonography, caliper measurements, histology, and immunohistochemistry. Numbers of blood circulating EPCs were assessed by flow cytometry. In vitro, estrogen-treated EPCs exhibited a higher migratory and tube-forming capacity when compared with controls. In vivo, numbers of circulating EPCs were not affected by estrogen. However, estrogen significantly increased the number of EPCs incorporated into the lesions' microvasculature, resulting in an improved early vascularization. Estrogen further stimulated the growth of lesions, which exhibited massively dilated glands with a flattened layer of stroma. This was mainly because of an increased glandular secretory activity, whereas cell proliferation and apoptosis were not markedly affected. These findings indicate that vasculogenesis in endometriotic lesions is dependent on estrogen, which adds a novel hormonally regulated mechanism to the complex pathophysiology of endometriosis. PMID:27315780

  15. Electrophysiological characterization, solubilization and purification of the Tityus gamma toxin receptor associated with the gating component of the Na+ channel from rat brain.

    PubMed

    Barhanin, J; Pauron, D; Lombet, A; Norman, R I; Vijverberg, H P; Giglio, J R; Lazdunski, M

    1983-01-01

    Electrophysiological studies with neuroblastoma cells have shown that toxin gamma from the venom of the scorpion Tityus serrulatus is a new toxin specific for the gating system of the Na+ channel. The procedure which solubilizes the tetrodotoxin receptor from rat brain also solubilizes the Tityus gamma toxin receptor. Binding experiments on the solubilized receptor with a radioiodinated derivative of Tityus gamma toxin have shown: (i) that the TiTx gamma-receptor complex is very stable with a dissociation constant of 8.6 X 10(-12) M and a very slow dissociation (T 1/2 = 15 h); (ii) that the toxin recognizes a class of sites with a 1:1 stoichiometry with those for tetrodotoxin (Bmax = 1.3 pmol/mg protein). The radioiodinated Tityus gamma-receptor complex has been substantially purified by ion-exchange chromatography, lectin affinity chromatography and sucrose gradient sedimentation. A ratio of one Tityus gamma toxin binding site per tetrodotoxin binding site was found throughout the purification. The purified material exhibited a sedimentation coefficient of 10.4S and had an apparent mol. wt. of 270 000 on SDS-gel electrophoresis. No other polypeptide chains were demonstrated to be associated with this large protein in the Tityus gamma receptor. The main conclusion is that the tetrodotoxin binding site associated with the selectivity filter of the Na+ channel and the Tityus gamma toxin binding site associated with the gating component are probably carried by the same polypeptide chain. PMID:6315420

  16. Sequencing and Diversity Analyses Reveal Extensive Similarities between Some Epsilon-Toxin-Encoding Plasmids and the pCPF5603 Clostridium perfringens Enterotoxin Plasmid▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Li, Jihong; Sayeed, Sameera; Akimoto, Shigeru; McClane, Bruce A.

    2008-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens type B and D isolates produce epsilon-toxin, the third most potent clostridial toxin. The epsilon-toxin gene (etx) is plasmid borne in type D isolates, but etx genetics have been poorly studied in type B isolates. This study reports the first sequencing of any etx plasmid, i.e., pCP8533etx, from type B strain NCTC8533. This etx plasmid is 64.7 kb, carries tcp conjugative transfer genes, and encodes additional potential virulence factors including beta2-toxin, sortase, and collagen adhesin but not beta-toxin. Interestingly, nearly 80% of pCP8533etx open reading frames (ORFs) are also present on pCPF5603, an enterotoxin-encoding plasmid from type A isolate F5603. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and overlapping PCR indicated that a pCP8533etx-like etx plasmid is also present in most, if not all, other type B isolates and some beta2-toxin-positive, cpe-negative type D isolates, while other type D isolates carry different etx plasmids. Sequences upstream of the etx gene vary between type B isolates and some type D isolates that do not carry a pCP8533etx-like etx plasmid. However, nearly all type B and D isolates have an etx locus with an upstream IS1151, and those etx loci typically reside near a dcm ORF. These results suggest that pCPF5603 and pCP8533etx evolved from insertion of mobile genetic elements carrying enterotoxin or etx genes, respectively, onto a common progenitor plasmid. PMID:18776010

  17. A Cell-Based Fluorescent Assay to Detect the Activity of Shiga Toxin and Other Toxins That Inhibit Protein Synthesis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Escherichia coli O157:H7, a major cause of food-borne illness, produces Shiga toxins that block protein synthesis by inactivating the ribosome. In this chapter we describe a simple cell-based fluorescent assay to detect Shiga toxins and inhibitors of toxin activity. The assay can also be used to d...

  18. Botulinum toxin (botox) chemodenervation for facial rejuvenation.

    PubMed

    Carruthers, J; Carruthers, A

    2001-05-01

    A positive attitude toward life at any age is now seen to be consistent with inclusion in all societal activities. A mere increase in years is no longer enough reason for "ageism." Botulinum Toxin (Botox) aesthetic treatments, because of their outstanding effectiveness and safety, can continue to play a positive role in the rebuttal of "ageism." PMID:11457686

  19. Toxins and antimicrobial peptides: interactions with membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlamadinger, Diana E.; Gable, Jonathan E.; Kim, Judy E.

    2009-08-01

    The innate immunity to pathogenic invasion of organisms in the plant and animal kingdoms relies upon cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as the first line of defense. In addition to these natural peptide antibiotics, similar cationic peptides, such as the bee venom toxin melittin, act as nonspecific toxins. Molecular details of AMP and peptide toxin action are not known, but the universal function of these peptides to disrupt cell membranes of pathogenic bacteria (AMPs) or a diverse set of eukaryotes and prokaryotes (melittin) is widely accepted. Here, we have utilized spectroscopic techniques to elucidate peptide-membrane interactions of alpha-helical human and mouse AMPs of the cathelicidin family as well as the peptide toxin melittin. The activity of these natural peptides and their engineered analogs was studied on eukaryotic and prokaryotic membrane mimics consisting of <200-nm bilayer vesicles composed of anionic and neutral lipids as well as cholesterol. Vesicle disruption, or peptide potency, was monitored with a sensitive fluorescence leakage assay. Detailed molecular information on peptidemembrane interactions and peptide structure was further gained through vibrational spectroscopy combined with circular dichroism. Finally, steady-state fluorescence experiments yielded insight into the local environment of native or engineered tryptophan residues in melittin and human cathelicidin embedded in bilayer vesicles. Collectively, our results provide clues to the functional structures of the engineered and toxic peptides and may impact the design of synthetic antibiotic peptides that can be used against the growing number of antibiotic-resistant pathogens.

  20. Future Avenues to Decrease Uremic Toxin Concentration.

    PubMed

    Vanholder, Raymond C; Eloot, Sunny; Glorieux, Griet L R L

    2016-04-01

    In this article, we review approaches for decreasing uremic solute concentrations in chronic kidney disease and in particular, in end-stage renal disease (ESRD). The rationale to do so is the straightforward relation between concentration and biological (toxic) effect for most toxins. The first section is devoted to extracorporeal strategies (kidney replacement therapy). In the context of high-flux hemodialysis and hemodiafiltration, we discuss increasing dialyzer blood and dialysate flows, frequent and/or extended dialysis, adsorption, bioartificial kidney, and changing physical conditions within the dialyzer (especially for protein-bound toxins). The next section focuses on the intestinal generation of uremic toxins, which in return is stimulated by uremic conditions. Therapeutic options are probiotics, prebiotics, synbiotics, and intestinal sorbents. Current data are conflicting, and these issues need further study before useful therapeutic concepts are developed. The following section is devoted to preservation of (residual) kidney function. Although many therapeutic options may overlap with therapies provided before ESRD, we focus on specific aspects of ESRD treatment, such as the risks of too-strict blood pressure and glycemic regulation and hemodynamic changes during dialysis. Finally, some recommendations are given on how research might be organized with regard to uremic toxins and their effects, removal, and impact on outcomes of uremic patients. PMID:26500179

  1. Natural toxins for use in pest management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Natural toxins are a source of new chemical classes of pesticides, as well as environmentally and toxicologically safer molecules than many of the currently used pesticides. Furthermore, they often have molecular target sites that are not exploited by currently marketed pesticides. There are highly ...

  2. (-)-Botryodiplodin, A Unique Ribose Analog Toxin

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Many toxins owe their mechanisms of action to being structural analogs of essential metabolites, messengers or structural components. Examples range from tubo-curare to penicillin. Ribose plays a unique role in the metabolism of living organisms, whether prokaryotes or eukaryotes. It and its deri...

  3. Cyanobacterial toxins: biosynthetic routes and evolutionary roots.

    PubMed

    Dittmann, Elke; Fewer, David P; Neilan, Brett A

    2013-01-01

    Cyanobacteria produce an unparalleled variety of toxins that can cause severe health problems or even death in humans, and wild or domestic animals. In the last decade, biosynthetic pathways have been assigned to the majority of the known toxin families. This review summarizes current knowledge about the enzymatic basis for the production of the hepatotoxins microcystin and nodularin, the cytotoxin cylindrospermopsin, the neurotoxins anatoxin and saxitoxin, and the dermatotoxin lyngbyatoxin. Elucidation of the biosynthetic pathways of the toxins has paved the way for the development of molecular techniques for the detection and quantification of the producing cyanobacteria in different environments. Phylogenetic analyses of related clusters from a large number of strains has also allowed for the reconstruction of the evolutionary scenarios that have led to the emergence, diversification, and loss of such gene clusters in different strains and genera of cyanobacteria. Advances in the understanding of toxin biosynthesis and evolution have provided new methods for drinking-water quality control and may inspire the development of techniques for the management of bloom formation in the future. PMID:23051004

  4. Botulinum Toxin in Neurogenic Detrusor Overactivity

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Rúiter Silva; Rassi, Mauricio Carneiro

    2012-01-01

    Purpose To evaluate the effects of botulinum toxin on urodynamic parameters and quality of life in patients with neurogenic detrusor overactivity. Methods Thirty four adult patients with spinal cord injury and detrusor overactivity were selected. The patients received 300 units of botulinum toxin type A. The endpoints evaluated with the episodes of urinary incontinence and measured the maximum cystometric capacity, maximum amplitude of detrusor pressure and bladder compliance at the beginning and end of the study (24 weeks) and evaluated the quality of life by applying the Qualiveen questionnaire. Results A significant decrease in the episodes of urinary incontinence was observed. All urodynamic parameters presented a significant improvement. The same was observed in the quality of life index and the specific impact of urinary problems scores from the Qualiveen questionnaire. Six patients did not complete the study, two due to incomplete follow-up, and four violated protocol and were excluded from the analyses. No systemic adverse events of botulinum toxin type A were reported. Conclusions A botulinum toxin type A showed a significantly improved response in urodynamics parameters and specific and general quality of life. PMID:23094220

  5. Molecular basis for tetanus toxin coreceptor interactions.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chen; Baldwin, Michael R; Barbieri, Joseph T

    2008-07-01

    Tetanus toxin (TeNT) elicits spastic paralysis through the cleavage of vesicle-associated membrane protein-2 (VAMP-2) in neurons at the interneuronal junction of the central nervous system. While TeNT retrograde traffics from peripheral nerve endings to the interneuronal junction, there is limited understanding of the neuronal receptors utilized by tetanus toxin for the initial entry into nerve cells. Earlier studies implicated a coreceptor for tetanus toxin entry into neurons: a ganglioside binding pocket and a sialic acid binding pocket and that GT1b bound to each pocket. In this study, a solid phase assay characterized the ganglioside binding specificity and functional properties of both carbohydrate binding pockets of TeNT. The ganglioside binding pocket recognized the ganglioside sugar backbone, Gal-GalNAc, independent of sialic acid-(5) and sialic acid-(7) and GM1a was an optimal substrate for this pocket, while the sialic acid binding pocket recognized sialic acid-(5) and sialic acid-(7) with "b"series of gangliosides preferred relative to "a" series gangliosides. The high-affinity binding of gangliosides to TeNT HCR required functional ganglioside and sialic acid binding pockets, supporting synergistic binding to coreceptors. This analysis provides a model for how tetanus toxin utilizes coreceptors for high-affinity binding to neurons. PMID:18543947

  6. Pasteurella multocida Toxin Manipulates T Cell Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Hildebrand, Dagmar; Heeg, Klaus; Kubatzky, Katharina F.

    2015-01-01

    Pasteurella multocida causes various diseases in a broad range of wild and domestic animals. Toxigenic strains of the serotypes A and D produce an AB protein toxin named Pasteurella multocida toxin (PMT). PMT constitutively activates the heterotrimeric G protein subunits Gαq, Gα13, and Gαi through deamidation of a glutamine residue, which results in cytoskeletal rearrangements as well as increased proliferation and survival of the host cell. In human monocytes, PMT alters the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced activation toward a phenotype that suppresses T cell activation. Here we describe that the toxin also modulates CD4-positive T helper (Th) cells directly. PMT amplifies the expansion of Th cells through enhanced cell cycle progression and suppression of apoptosis and manipulates the differentiation of Th subclasses through activation of Signal Transducers and Activators of Transcription (STAT) family members and induction of subtype-specific master transcription factors. A large population of toxin-treated T cells is double-positive for Foxp3 and RORγt, the transcription factors expressed by Treg and Th17 cells, respectively. This suggests that these cells could have the potential to turn into Th17 cells or suppressive Treg cells. However, in terms of function, the PMT-differentiated cells behave as inflammatory Th17 cells that produce IL-17 and trigger T cell proliferation. PMID:26635744

  7. Alpha-Toxin and Gamma-Toxin Jointly Promote Staphylococcus aureus Virulence in Murine Septic Arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Nilsson, Ing-Marie; Hartford, Orla; Foster, Timothy; Tarkowski, Andrzej

    1999-01-01

    Septic arthritis is a common and feared complication of staphylococcal infections. Staphylococcus aureus produces a number of potential virulence factors including certain adhesins and enterotoxins. In this study we have assessed the roles of cytolytic toxins in the development of septic arthritis by inoculating mice with S. aureus wild-type strain 8325-4 or isogenic mutants differing in the expression of alpha-, beta-, and gamma-toxin production patterns. Mice inoculated with either an alpha- or beta-toxin mutant showed degrees of inflammation, joint damage, and weight decrease similar to wild-type-inoculated mice. In contrast, mice inoculated with either double (alpha- and gamma-toxin-deficient)- or triple (alpha-, beta-, and gamma-toxin-deficient)-mutant S. aureus strains showed lower frequency and severity of arthritis, measured both clinically and histologically, than mice inoculated with the wild-type strain. We conclude that simultaneous production of alpha- and gamma-toxin is a virulence factor in S. aureus arthritis. PMID:10024541

  8. Higher cytotoxicity of divalent antibody-toxins than monovalent antibody-toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Won, JaeSeon; Nam, PilWon; Lee, YongChan; Choe, MuHyeon

    2009-04-24

    Recombinant antibody-toxins are constructed via the fusion of a 'carcinoma-specific' antibody fragment to a toxin. Due to the high affinity and high selectivity of the antibody fragments, antibody-toxins can bind to surface antigens on cancer cells and kill them without harming normal cells [L.H. Pai, J.K. Batra, D.J. FitzGerald, M.C. Willingham, I. Pastan, Anti-tumor activities of immunotoxins made of monoclonal antibody B3 and various forms of Pseudomonas exotoxin, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 88 (1991) 3358-3362]. In this study, we constructed the antibody-toxin, Fab-SWn-PE38, with SWn (n = 3, 6, 9) sequences containing n-time repeated (G{sub 4}S) between the Fab fragment and PE38 (38 kDa truncated form of Pseudomonas exotoxin A). The SWn sequence also harbored one cysteine residue that could form a disulfide bridge between two Fab-SWn-PE38 monomers. We assessed the cytotoxicity of the monovalent (Fab-SWn-PE38), and divalent ([Fab-SWn-PE38]{sub 2}) antibody-toxins. The cytotoxicity of the dimer against the CRL1739 cell line was approximately 18.8-fold higher than that of the monomer on the ng/ml scale, which was approximately 37.6-fold higher on the pM scale. These results strongly indicate that divalency provides higher cytotoxicity for an antibody-toxin.

  9. Transcriptional Heterogeneity and Lineage Commitment in Myeloid Progenitors.

    PubMed

    Paul, Franziska; Arkin, Ya'ara; Giladi, Amir; Jaitin, Diego Adhemar; Kenigsberg, Ephraim; Keren-Shaul, Hadas; Winter, Deborah; Lara-Astiaso, David; Gury, Meital; Weiner, Assaf; David, Eyal; Cohen, Nadav; Lauridsen, Felicia Kathrine Bratt; Haas, Simon; Schlitzer, Andreas; Mildner, Alexander; Ginhoux, Florent; Jung, Steffen; Trumpp, Andreas; Porse, Bo Torben; Tanay, Amos; Amit, Ido

    2015-12-17

    Within the bone marrow, stem cells differentiate and give rise to diverse blood cell types and functions. Currently, hematopoietic progenitors are defined using surface markers combined with functional assays that are not directly linked with in vivo differentiation potential or gene regulatory mechanisms. Here, we comprehensively map myeloid progenitor subpopulations by transcriptional sorting of single cells from the bone marrow. We describe multiple progenitor subgroups, showing unexpected transcriptional priming toward seven differentiation fates but no progenitors with a mixed state. Transcriptional differentiation is correlated with combinations of known and previously undefined transcription factors, suggesting that the process is tightly regulated. Histone maps and knockout assays are consistent with early transcriptional priming, while traditional transplantation experiments suggest that in vivo priming may still allow for plasticity given strong perturbations. These data establish a reference model and general framework for studying hematopoiesis at single-cell resolution. PMID:26627738

  10. Murine Hematopoietic Stem cells and Progenitors Express Adrenergic Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Muthu, Kuzhali; Iyer, Sivaraman; He, L-K.; Szilagyi, Andrea; Gamelli, Richard L; Shankar, Ravi; Jones, Stephen B

    2007-01-01

    Association between the nervous and immune system is well documented. Immune cells originate within the bone marrow that is innervated. Thermal injury induces adrenergic stimulation, augments monocytopoiesis and alters the β-adrenergic receptor (AR) profile of bone marrow monocyte committed progenitors. This provides an impetus to study AR expression in hematopoietic progenitors along myeloid lineage. Using FACS analysis and confocal microscopy, we report the expression of α1-, α2- and β2- AR in enriched populations of ER-MP20+ and ER-MP12+ myeloid progenitors, CD117+ and CD34+ multi-potential progenitors and more importantly pluripotent stem cells suggesting a plausible role for catecholamine in hematopoietic development. PMID:17428548

  11. Alpha-toxin of Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed Central

    Bhakdi, S; Tranum-Jensen, J

    1991-01-01

    Alpha-toxin, the major cytotoxic agent elaborated by Staphylococcus aureus, was the first bacterial exotoxin to be identified as a pore former. The protein is secreted as a single-chain, water-soluble molecule of Mr 33,000. At low concentrations (less than 100 nM), the toxin binds to as yet unidentified, high-affinity acceptor sites that have been detected on a variety of cells including rabbit erythrocytes, human platelets, monocytes and endothelial cells. At high concentrations, the toxin additionally binds via nonspecific absorption to lipid bilayers; it can thus damage both cells lacking significant numbers of the acceptor and protein-free artificial lipid bilayers. Membrane damage occurs in both cases after membrane-bound toxin molecules collide via lateral diffusion to form ring-structured hexamers. The latter insert spontaneously into the lipid bilayer to form discrete transmembrane pores of effective diameter 1 to 2 nm. A hypothetical model is advanced in which the pore is lined by amphiphilic beta-sheets, one surface of which interacts with lipids whereas the other repels apolar membrane constitutents to force open an aqueous passage. The detrimental effects of alpha-toxin are due not only to the death of susceptible targets, but also to the presence of secondary cellular reactions that can be triggered via Ca2+ influx through the pores. Well-studied phenomena include the stimulation of arachidonic acid metabolism, triggering of granule exocytosis, and contractile dysfunction. Such processes cause profound long-range disturbances such as development of pulmonary edema and promotion of blood coagulation.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) Images PMID:1779933

  12. [Treatment of spasticity with botulinum toxin].

    PubMed

    Mémin, B; Pollak, P; Hommel, M; Perret, J

    1992-01-01

    Spasticity following upper motor neuron lesion can be alleviated by few treatments such as physiotherapy, drugs and neurosurgery. However, they all have side effects, limitations or lack of selectivity. We tentatively used the paralyzing effects of botulinum toxin. Since the late 1970's the use of this toxin has increased and it has been extended to numerous muscles and diseases of various causes. In this pilot and open study we use botulinum toxin in spasticity. Eight patients (7 stroke, 1 head injury) with longstanding severe spasticity (minimum: 12 months, maximum: 15 years) were included. Spasticity greatly interfered with their activity in daily life and was resistant to oral antispastic medications. Six patients suffered from pain and 4 had cutaneous lesions especially maceration of the palm of the hand. A-botulinum toxin was injected with a 30-gauged needle. The sites chosen for injection were the following muscles: biceps brachii, brachioradialis, flexor digitorum, flexor carpi, tibialis anterior, flexor digitorum longus. Altogether 41 injections were performed. There were no side effects. Spasticity was improved in all patients. Five patients reported significant pain relief on a visual analogical scale. Most of them reported a benefit in their limb tone and referred to subjective improvement in the activity of daily life and nursing. The beneficial effects of one injection lasted more than 5 months. Seven patients received a second course of treatment. A double-blind study of botulinum toxin in spasticity is to be undertaken to assess its effectiveness and safety when prescribed in the required dose to treat this condition. PMID:1604136

  13. Signaling pathways implicated in hematopoietic progenitor cell proliferation and differentiation.

    PubMed

    Bugarski, Diana; Krstic, Aleksandra; Mojsilovic, Slavko; Vlaski, Marija; Petakov, Marijana; Jovcic, Gordana; Stojanovic, Nevenka; Milenkovic, Pavle

    2007-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the signal transduction pathways associated with the clonal development of myeloid and erythroid progenitor cells. The contribution of particular signaling molecules of protein tyrosine kinases (PTKs), mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase, and PI-3 kinase signaling to the growth of murine bone marrow colony forming unit-granulocyte-macrophage (CFU-GM) and erythroid (burst forming unit-erythroid [BFU-E] and colony forming unit-erythroid [CFU-E]) progenitors was examined in studies performed in the presence or absence of specific signal transduction inhibitors. The results clearly pointed to different signal transducing intermediates that are involved in cell proliferation and differentiation depending on the cell lineage, as well as on the progenitors' maturity. Lineage-specific differences were obtained when chemical inhibitors specific for receptor- or nonreceptor-PTKs, as well as for the main groups of distinctly regulated MAPK cascades, were used because all of these compounds suppressed the growth of erythroid progenitors, with no major effects on myeloid progenitors. At the same time, differential involvement of MEK/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) MAPK transduction pathway was observed in the proliferation and/or differentiation of early, BFU-E, and late, CFU-E, erythroid progenitor cells. The results also demonstrated that phosphatydylinositol (PI)-3 kinase and nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kappaB) transcriptional factor were required for maintenance of both myeloid and erythroid progenitor cell function. Overall, the data obtained indicated that committed hematopoietic progenitors express a certain level of constitutive signaling activity that participates in the regulation of normal steady-state hematopoiesis and point to the importance of evaluating the impact of signal transduction inhibitors on normal bone marrow when used as potential therapeutic agents. PMID:17202596

  14. Preliminary spectroscopic characterization of six toxins from Latin American scorpions.

    PubMed

    Possani, L; Steinmetz, W E; Dent, M A; Alagón, A C; Wüthrich, K

    1981-07-28

    This paper reports on spectroscopic studies of six toxins from the Latin American scorpions Centruroides noxius Hoffmann, Centruroides elegans Thorell and Tityus serrulatus Lutz and Mello. The isolation and purification of five of these toxins was described previously. The preparation of toxin II.9.2.2 from the venom of C. noxius is first described here. Circular dichroism and nuclear magnetic resonance spectra indicate similarities and differences between these scorpion toxins and previously characterized snake toxins. While there is evidence that the toxins from scorpions and snakes both contain extended beta-sheet secondary structures, the spectral properties of the scorpion toxins are overall of a different type from those of snake toxins. Among the six scorpion toxins those from T. serrulatus have spectral properties markedly different from those of the Centruroides species. Furthermore, thermal denaturation and amide proton exchange measurements showed that the globular structures of the Tityus toxins were markedly less stable and less rigid than those of the Centruroides toxins. PMID:7284435

  15. Bacillus anthracis Lethal Toxin Reduces Human Alveolar Epithelial Barrier Function

    PubMed Central

    Langer, Marybeth; Duggan, Elizabeth Stewart; Booth, John Leland; Patel, Vineet Indrajit; Zander, Ryan A.; Silasi-Mansat, Robert; Ramani, Vijay; Veres, Tibor Zoltan; Prenzler, Frauke; Sewald, Katherina; Williams, Daniel M.; Coggeshall, Kenneth Mark; Awasthi, Shanjana; Lupu, Florea; Burian, Dennis; Ballard, Jimmy Dale; Braun, Armin

    2012-01-01

    The lung is the site of entry for Bacillus anthracis in inhalation anthrax, the deadliest form of the disease. Bacillus anthracis produces virulence toxins required for disease. Alveolar macrophages were considered the primary target of the Bacillus anthracis virulence factor lethal toxin because lethal toxin inhibits mouse macrophages through cleavage of MEK signaling pathway components, but we have reported that human alveolar macrophages are not a target of lethal toxin. Our current results suggest that, unlike human alveolar macrophages, the cells lining the respiratory units of the lung, alveolar epithelial cells, are a target of lethal toxin in humans. Alveolar epithelial cells expressed lethal toxin receptor protein, bound the protective antigen component of lethal toxin, and were subject to lethal-toxin-induced cleavage of multiple MEKs. These findings suggest that human alveolar epithelial cells are a target of Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin. Further, no reduction in alveolar epithelial cell viability was observed, but lethal toxin caused actin rearrangement and impaired desmosome formation, consistent with impaired barrier function as well as reduced surfactant production. Therefore, by compromising epithelial barrier function, lethal toxin may play a role in the pathogenesis of inhalation anthrax by facilitating the dissemination of Bacillus anthracis from the lung in early disease and promoting edema in late stages of the illness. PMID:23027535

  16. Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin inhibits the gastrointestinal transit in mice.

    PubMed

    Losada-Eaton, D M; Fernandez-Miyakawa, M E

    2010-12-01

    Epsilon toxin produced by Clostridium perfringens type B and D is a potent toxin that is responsible for a highly fatal enterotoxemia in sheep and goats. In vitro, epsilon toxin produces contraction of the rat ileum as the result of an indirect action, presumably mediated through the autonomic nervous system. To examine the impact of epsilon toxin in the intestinal transit, gastric emptying (GE) and gastrointestinal transit (GIT) were evaluated after intravenous and oral administration of epsilon toxin in mice. Orally administered epsilon toxin produced a delay on the GIT. Inhibition of the small intestinal transit was observed as early as 1 h after the toxin was administered orally but the effects were not observed after 1 week. Epsilon toxin also produced an inhibition in GE and a delay on the GIT when relatively high toxin concentrations were given intravenously. These results indicate that epsilon toxin administered orally or intravenously to mice transitorily inhibits the GIT. The delay in the GIT induced by epsilon toxin could be relevant in the pathogenesis of C. perfringens type B and D enterotoxemia. PMID:20434186

  17. Mode of action of mosquitocidal Bacillus thuringiensis toxins.

    PubMed

    Soberón, Mario; Fernández, Luisa E; Pérez, Claudia; Gill, Sarjeet S; Bravo, Alejandra

    2007-04-01

    Cry toxins from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) are used for insect control. Their primary action is to lyse midgut epithelial cells. In lepidopteran insects, Cry1A monomeric toxins interact with a first receptor and this interaction triggers toxin oligomerization. The oligomeric structure interacts then with a second GPI-anchored receptor that induces insertion into membrane microdomains and larvae death. In the case of mosquitocidal Bt strains, two different toxins participate, Cry and Cyt. These toxins have a synergistic effect and Cyt1Aa overcomes Cry toxin-resistance. We will summarize recent findings on the identification of Cry receptors in mosquitoes and the mechanism of synergism: Cyt1Aa synergizes or suppresses resistance to Cry toxins by functioning as a Cry membrane-bound receptor. PMID:17145072

  18. GRHL3/GET1 and Trithorax Group Members Collaborate to Activate the Epidermal Progenitor Differentiation Program

    PubMed Central

    Hopkin, Amelia Soto; Gordon, William; Klein, Rachel Herndon; Espitia, Francisco; Daily, Kenneth; Zeller, Michael; Baldi, Pierre; Andersen, Bogi

    2012-01-01

    The antagonistic actions of Polycomb and Trithorax are responsible for proper cell fate determination in mammalian tissues. In the epidermis, a self-renewing epithelium, previous work has shown that release from Polycomb repression only partially explains differentiation gene activation. We now show that Trithorax is also a key regulator of epidermal differentiation, not only through activation of genes repressed by Polycomb in progenitor cells, but also through activation of genes independent of regulation by Polycomb. The differentiation associated transcription factor GRHL3/GET1 recruits the ubiquitously expressed Trithorax complex to a subset of differentiation genes. PMID:22829784

  19. Mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells promote the reconstitution of exogenous hematopoietic stem cells in Fancg−/− mice in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yan; Chen, Shi; Yuan, Jin; Yang, Yanzhu; Li, Jingling; Ma, Jin; Wu, Xiaohua; Freund, Marcel; Pollok, Karen; Hanenberg, Helmut; Goebel, W. Scott

    2009-01-01

    Fanconi anemia (FA) is a heterogeneous genetic disorder characterized by bone marrow failure and complex congenital anomalies. Although mutations in FA genes result in a characteristic phenotype in the hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPCs), little is known about the consequences of a nonfunctional FA pathway in other stem/progenitor cell compartments. Given the intense functional interactions between HSPCs and the mesenchymalmicroenvironment, we investigated the FA pathway on the cellular functions of murine mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells (MSPCs) and their interactions with HSPCs in vitro and in vivo. Here, we show that loss of the murine homologue of FANCG (Fancg) results in a defect in MSPC proliferation and in their ability to support the adhesion and engraftment of murine syngeneic HSPCs in vitro or in vivo. Transplantation of wild-type (WT) but not Fancg−/− MSPCs into the tibiae of Fancg−/− recipient mice enhances the HSPC engraftment kinetics, the BM cellularity, and the number of progenitors per tibia of WT HSPCs injected into lethally irradiated Fancg−/− recipients. Collectively, these data show that FA proteins are required in the BM microenvironment to maintain normal hematopoiesis and provide genetic and quantitative evidence that adoptive transfer of WT MSPCs enhances hematopoietic stem cell engraftment. PMID:19129541

  20. Harnessing endogenous stem/progenitor cells for tendon regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Chang H.; Lee, Francis Y.; Tarafder, Solaiman; Kao, Kristy; Jun, Yena; Yang, Guodong; Mao, Jeremy J.

    2015-01-01

    Current stem cell–based strategies for tissue regeneration involve ex vivo manipulation of these cells to confer features of the desired progenitor population. Recently, the concept that endogenous stem/progenitor cells could be used for regenerating tissues has emerged as a promising approach that potentially overcomes the obstacles related to cell transplantation. Here we applied this strategy for the regeneration of injured tendons in a rat model. First, we identified a rare fraction of tendon cells that was positive for the known tendon stem cell marker CD146 and exhibited clonogenic capacity, as well as multilineage differentiation ability. These tendon-resident CD146+ stem/progenitor cells were selectively enriched by connective tissue growth factor delivery (CTGF delivery) in the early phase of tendon healing, followed by tenogenic differentiation in the later phase. The time-controlled proliferation and differentiation of CD146+ stem/progenitor cells by CTGF delivery successfully led to tendon regeneration with densely aligned collagen fibers, normal level of cellularity, and functional restoration. Using siRNA knockdown to evaluate factors involved in tendon generation, we demonstrated that the FAK/ERK1/2 signaling pathway regulates CTGF-induced proliferation and differentiation of CD146+ stem/progenitor cells. Together, our findings support the use of endogenous stem/progenitor cells as a strategy for tendon regeneration without cell transplantation and suggest this approach warrants exploration in other tissues. PMID:26053662