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Sample records for extracellular contrast media-enhanced

  1. Soil organic matter and the extracellular microbial matrix show contrasting responses to C and N availability

    PubMed Central

    Redmile-Gordon, M.A.; Evershed, R.P.; Hirsch, P.R.; White, R.P.; Goulding, K.W.T.

    2015-01-01

    An emerging paradigm in soil science suggests microbes can perform ‘N mining’ from recalcitrant soil organic matter (SOM) in conditions of low N availability. However, this requires the production of extracellular structures rich in N (including enzymes and structural components) and thus defies stoichiometric expectation. We set out to extract newly synthesised peptides from the extracellular matrix in soil and compare the amino acid (AA) profiles, N incorporation and AA dynamics in response to labile inputs of contrasting C/N ratio. Glycerol was added both with and without an inorganic source of N (10% 15N labelled NH4NO3) to a soil already containing a large pool of refractory SOM and incubated for 10 days. The resulting total soil peptide (TSP) and extracellular pools were compared using colorimetric methods, gas chromatography, and isotope ratio mass spectrometry. N isotope compositions showed that the extracellular polymeric substance (EPS) contained a greater proportion of products formed de novo than did TSP, with hydrophobic EPS-AAs (leucine, isoleucine, phenylalanine, hydroxyproline and tyrosine) deriving substantially more N from the inorganic source provided. Quantitative comparison between extracts showed that the EPS contained greater relative proportions of alanine, glycine, proline, phenylalanine and tyrosine. The greatest increases in EPS-peptide and EPS-polysaccharide concentrations occurred at the highest C/N ratios. All EPS-AAs responded similarly to treatment whereas the responses of TSP were more complex. The results suggest that extracellular investment of N (as EPS peptides) is a microbial survival mechanism in conditions of low N/high C which, from an evolutionary perspective, must ultimately lead to the tendency for increased N returns to the microbial biomass. A conceptual model is proposed that describes the dynamics of the extracellular matrix in response to the C/N ratio of labile inputs. PMID:26339106

  2. Extracellular Polymeric Substances diversity of biofilms grown under contrasted environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Ras, Monique; Lefebvre, Dominique; Derlon, Nicolas; Paul, Etienne; Girbal-Neuhauser, Elisabeth

    2011-02-01

    Extracellular Polymeric Substances (EPS) analysis was undertaken on three biofilms grown under different feeding conditions and offering diverging microbial activities and structural characteristics. EPS were extracted by a multi-method protocol including sonication, Tween and EDTA treatments and were characterized by size exclusion chromatography (SEC). Tween and sonication extracts presented higher EPS size diversity compared to EDTA extracts. EPS size diversity also increased with microbial functions within the biofilms and a specific 25-50 kDa cluster was identified only in extracts from biofilms presenting autotrophic activity. Another specific size cluster (180 kDa) occurred in Tween extracts provided from the mechanically stable biofilms. Such specific EPS appear as potential indicators for describing microbial and structural properties of biofilms. This study brings new elements for designing EPS fractionation and shows that size distribution analysis is an interesting tool to relate EPS diversity with macro-scale characteristics of biofilms.

  3. Application of extracellular gadolinium-based MRI contrast agents and the risk of nephrogenic systemic fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Heverhagen, J T; Krombach, G A; Gizewski, E

    2014-07-01

    Nephrogenic systemic fibrosis (NSF) is a serious, sometimes fatal disease. Findings in recent years have shown that a causal association between gadolinium containing contrast media and NSF is most likely. Therefore, the regulatory authorities have issued guidelines on the use of gadolinium-containing contrast media which have reduced the number of new cases of NSF to almost zero. However, it is for precisely this reason that the greatest care must still be taken to ensure that these guidelines are complied with. The most important factors are renal function, the quantity of gadolinium administered and coexisting diseases such as inflammation. All of these factors crucially influence the quantity of gadolinium released from the chelat in the body. This free gadolinium is thought to be the trigger for NSF. Other important factors are the stability of the gadolinium complex and furthermore the route of its elimination from the body. Partial elimination via the liver might be an additional protective mechanism. In conclusion, despite the NSF risk, contrast-enhanced MRI is a safe diagnostic procedure which can be used reliably and safely even in patients with severe renal failure, and does not necessarily have to be replaced by other methods.

  4. Equilibrium-phase MR angiography: Comparison of unspecific extracellular and protein-binding gadolinium-based contrast media with respect to image quality.

    PubMed

    Erb-Eigner, Katharina; Taupitz, Matthias; Asbach, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to compare contrast and image quality of whole-body equilibrium-phase high-spatial-resolution MR angiography using a non-protein-binding unspecific extracellular gadolinium-based contrast medium with that of two contrast media with different protein-binding properties. 45 patients were examined using either 15 mL of gadobutrol (non-protein-binding, n = 15), 32 mL of gadobenate dimeglumine (weakly protein binding, n = 15) or 11 mL gadofosveset trisodium (protein binding, n = 15) followed by equilibrium-phase high-spatial-resolution MR-angiography of four consecutive anatomic regions. The time elapsed between the contrast injection and the beginning of the equilibrium-phase image acquisition in the respective region was measured and was up to 21 min. Signal intensity was measured in two vessels per region and in muscle tissue. Relative contrast (RC) values were calculated. Vessel contrast, artifacts and image quality were rated by two radiologists in consensus on a five-point scale. Compared with gadobutrol, gadofosveset trisodium revealed significantly higher RC values only when acquired later than 15 min after bolus injection. Otherwise, no significant differences between the three contrast media were found regarding vascular contrast and image quality. Equilibrium-phase high-spatial-resolution MR-angiography using a weakly protein-binding or even non-protein-binding contrast medium is equivalent to using a stronger protein-binding contrast medium when image acquisition is within the first 15 min after contrast injection, and allows depiction of the vasculature with high contrast and image quality. The protein-binding contrast medium was superior for imaging only later than 15 min after contrast medium injection.

  5. An adaptive model for rapid and direct estimation of extravascular extracellular space in dynamic contrast enhanced MRI studies.

    PubMed

    Dehkordi, Azimeh N V; Kamali-Asl, Alireza; Ewing, James R; Wen, Ning; Chetty, Indrin J; Bagher-Ebadian, Hassan

    2017-02-14

    Extravascular extracellular space (ve ) is a key parameter to characterize the tissue of cerebral tumors. This study introduces an artificial neural network (ANN) as a fast, direct, and accurate estimator of ve from a time trace of the longitudinal relaxation rate, ΔR1 (R1  = 1/T1 ), in DCE-MRI studies. Using the extended Tofts equation, a set of ΔR1 profiles was simulated in the presence of eight different signal to noise ratios. A set of gain- and noise-insensitive features was generated from the simulated ΔR1 profiles and used as the ANN training set. A K-fold cross-validation method was employed for training, testing, and optimization of the ANN. The performance of the optimal ANN (12:6:1, 12 features as input vector, six neurons in hidden layer, and one output) in estimating ve at a resolution of 10% (error of ±5%) was 82%. The ANN was applied on DCE-MRI data of 26 glioblastoma patients to estimate ve in tumor regions. Its results were compared with the maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) of ve . The two techniques showed a strong agreement (r = 0.82, p < 0.0001). Results implied that the perfected ANN was less sensitive to noise and outperformed the MLE method in estimation of ve .

  6. Different Resistance to UV-B Radiation of Extracellular Polymeric Substances of Two Cyanobacteria from Contrasting Habitats

    PubMed Central

    Song, Wenjuan; Zhao, Chenxi; Zhang, Daoyong; Mu, Shuyong; Pan, Xiangliang

    2016-01-01

    The effects of UV-B radiation (UVBR) on photosynthetic activity (Fv/Fm) of aquatic Synechocystis sp. and desert Chroococcus minutus and effects on composition and fluorescence property of extracellular polymeric substances (EPSs) from Synechocystis sp. and C. minutus were comparatively investigated. The desert cyanobacterium species C. minutus showed higher tolerance of PSII activity (Fv/Fm) to UVBR than the aquatic Synechocystis sp., and the inhibited PSII activity of C. minutus could be fully recovered while that of Synechocystis sp. could be partly recovered. UVBR had significant effect on the yield and biochemical composition of EPS of both species. Protein-like and humic acid-like substances were detected in EPS from Synechocystis sp., and protein-like and phenol-like fluorescent compounds were detected in EPS from C. minutus. Proteins in EPS of desert and aquatic species were significantly decomposed under UVBR, and the latter was more easily decomposed. The polysaccharides were much more resistant to UVBR than the proteins for both species. Polysaccharides of Synechocystis sp. was degraded slightly but those of C. minutus was little decomposed. The higher tolerance to UVBR of the desert cyanobacterium can be attributed to the higher resistance of its EPS to photodegradation induced by UVBR in comparison with the aquatic species. PMID:27597841

  7. Influence of radiographic contrast media on the nitric oxide release from human arterial and venous endothelial cells on extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Franke, R P; Fuhrmann, R; Jung, F

    2013-01-01

    Radiographic contrast media (RCM) can vary widely in their physicochemical properties, e.g. the iodine concentration, osmolality, molecule structure, chemotoxicity, hydrophilicity, electric charge and viscosity. Besides the necessary effect of Roentgen ray absorption, which provides contrast-rich images of vessels, RCMs can have varying adverse effects. As one possible cause of microcirculatory disorders, changes in morphology and function of endothelial cells are discussed. Therefore, RCM media-induced release of nitric oxide from arterial as well as from venous endothelial cells in contact with two commercially available RCMs (Iodixanol and Iomeprol) was investigated. NO concentrations started to increase slightly in the HUVEC control cultures after 3 min incubation time, however, NO concentrations in the cultures incubated with Iomeprol 350 and Iodixanol 320 did not change over time (Iomeprol 350: p = 0.4905; Iodixanol 320: p = 0.784). On the whole, the time-dependent NO release differed for the three groups (RCM × time: p = 0.00224). This difference was due to the fact that, after incubation with the two contrast agents (Iodixanol 320: p = 0.0003; Iomeprol 350: p = 0.0168), less NO was released by the exposed HUVEC at 3 minutes and after 12 hours than by the control cells. In the control cultures of arterial endothelial cells as well as in cultures incubated with 30% v/v Iodixanol supplemented culture medium the NO release did not change. In those cultures of arterial endothelial cells supplemented with 30% v/v Iomeprol the NO release was significantly less than in control cultures and in cultures supplemented with Iodixanol (p = 0.021; p = 0.043). Inspite of a missing shear stress in our static plane vessel wall model there was a RCM-dependent difference in NO release from endothelial cells in vitro. The NO release from venous endothelial cells differed significantly from the NO release from arterial endothelial cells. While the administration of Iomeprol

  8. Contrasting extracellular enzyme activities of particle-associated bacteria from distinct provinces of the North Atlantic Ocean

    PubMed Central

    Arnosti, Carol; Fuchs, Bernhard M.; Amann, Rudolf; Passow, Uta

    2012-01-01

    Microbial communities play a key role in the marine carbon cycle, processing much of phytoplankton-derived organic matter. The composition of these communities varies by depth, season, and location in the ocean; the functional consequences of these compositional variations for the carbon cycle are only beginning to be explored. We measured the abilities of microbial communities in the large-particle fraction (retained by a 10-μm pore-size cartridge filter) to enzymatically hydrolyze high molecular weight substrates, and therefore initiate carbon remineralization in four distinct oceanic provinces: the boreal polar (BPLR), the Arctic oceanic (ARCT), the North Atlantic drift (NADR), and the North Atlantic subtropical (NAST) provinces. Since we expected the large-particle fraction to include phytoplankton cells, we measured the hydrolysis of polysaccharide substrates (laminarin, fucoidan, xylan, and chondroitin sulfate) expected to be associated with phytoplankton. Hydrolysis rates and patterns clustered into two groups, the BPLR/ARCT and the NADR/NAST. All four substrates were hydrolyzed by the BPLR/ARCT communities; hydrolysis rates of individual substrate varied by factors of ca. 1–4. In contrast, chondroitin was not hydrolyzed in the NADR/NAST, and hydrolytic activity was dominated by laminarinase. Fluorescence in situ hybridization of the large-particle fraction post-incubation showed a substantial contribution (15–26%) of CF319a-positive cells (Bacteroidetes) to total DAPI-stainable cells. Concurrent studies of microbial community composition and of fosmids from these same stations also demonstrated similarities between BPLR and ARCT stations, which were distinct from the NADR/NAST stations. Together, these data support a picture of compositionally as well as functionally distinct communities across these oceanic provinces. PMID:23248623

  9. Assessing Student Scientific Expression Using Media: The Media-Enhanced Science Presentation Rubric (MESPR)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mott, Michael S.; Chessin, Debby A.; Sumrall, William J.; Rutherford, Angela S.; Moore, Virginia J.

    2011-01-01

    The current study evaluated an assessment designed to dually promote student understanding of the experimental method and student ability to include digital and visual qualities in their presentations of scientific experiment results. The rubric, the Media-Enhanced Science Presentation Rubric (MESPR) focuses teacher-student dialogue along the…

  10. Influence of radiographic contrast media (Iodixanol and Iomeprol) on the endothelin-1 release from human arterial and venous endothelial cells cultured on an extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Franke, R P; Fuhrmann, R; Hiebl, B; Jung, F

    2012-01-01

    Various radiographic contrast media (RCM) are available for visualization of blood vessels in interventional cardiology which can vary widely in their physicochemical properties thereby influencing different functions of blood cells. In the in vitro study described here the influence of two RCMs on arterial as well as on venous endothelial cells was compared to control cultures and examined under statical culture conditions, thus eliminating the influence of RCM viscosity almost completely. The supplementation of the culture medium with RCM (30% v/v) resulted in clearly different reactions of the endothelial cells exposed. Exposition to Iodixanol supplemented culture medium was followed by endothelin-1 release from venous endothelial cells which was equivalent to the endothelin-1 release from venous control cultures. Compared to control cultures, venous endothelial cells exposed to culture medium supplemented with Iomeprol displayed a completely different reaction, the increase in endothelin-1 secretion was missing completely after a 12 hours exposure. Following a 12 hours exposure to both RCMs there were no longer endothelial cells adherent, neither in venous nor in arterial endothelial cell cultures. The study showed that not the wall shear stress was responsible for the differing effects visible after 1.5 min, 5 min, and 12 hours exposure to culture media supplemented with RCM but differences in chemotoxicity of the RCM applied.

  11. T1 mapping of the myocardium: intra-individual assessment of post-contrast T1 time evolution and extracellular volume fraction at 3T for Gd-DTPA and Gd-BOPTA

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Purpose Myocardial T1 relaxation time (T1 time) and extracellular volume fraction (ECV) are altered in patients with diffuse myocardial fibrosis. The purpose of this study was to perform an intra-individual assessment of normal T1 time and ECV for two different contrast agents. Methods A modified Look-Locker Inversion Recovery (MOLLI) sequence was acquired at 3 T in 24 healthy subjects (8 men; 28 ± 6 years) at mid-ventricular short axis pre-contrast and every 5 min between 5-45 min after injection of a bolus of 0.15 mmol/kg gadopentetate dimeglumine (Gd-DTPA; Magnevist®) (exam 1) and 0.1 mmol/kg gadobenate dimeglumine (Gd-BOPTA; Multihance®) (exam 2) during two separate scanning sessions. T1 times were measured in myocardium and blood on generated T1 maps. ECVs were calculated as ΔR1myocardium/ΔR1blood*1−hematocrit. Results Mean pre-contrast T1 relaxation times for myocardium and blood were similar for both the first and second CMR exam (p > 0.5). Overall mean post-contrast myocardial T1 time was 15 ± 2 ms (2.5 ± 0.7%) shorter for Gd-DTPA at 0.15 mmol/kg compared to Gd-BOPTA at 0.1 mmol/kg (p < 0.01) while there was no significant difference for T1 time of blood pool (p > 0.05). Between 5 and 45 minutes after contrast injection, mean ECV values increased linearly with time for both contrast agents from 0.27 ± 0.03 to 0.30 ± 0.03 (p < 0.0001). Mean ECV values were slightly higher (by 0.01, p < 0.05) for Gd-DTPA compared to Gd-BOPTA. Inter-individual variation of ECV was higher (CV 8.7% [exam 1, Gd-DTPA] and 9.4% [exam 2, Gd-BOPTA], respectively) compared to variation of pre-contrast myocardial T1 relaxation time (CV 4.5% [exam 1] and 3.0% [exam 2], respectively). ECV with Gd-DTPA was highly correlated to ECV by Gd-BOPTA (r = 0.803; p < 0.0001). Conclusion In comparison to pre-contrast myocardial T1 relaxation time, variation in ECV values of normal subjects is larger. However, absolute differences in ECV

  12. Release of extracellular ATP by bacteria during growth

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is used as an intracellular energy source by all living organisms. It plays a central role in the respiration and metabolism, and is the most important energy supplier in many enzymatic reactions. Its critical role as the energy storage molecule makes it extremely valuable to all cells. Results We report here the detection of extracellular ATP in the cultures of a variety of bacterial species. The levels of the extracellular ATP in bacterial cultures peaked around the end of the log phase and decreased in the stationary phase of growth. Extracellular ATP levels were dependent on the cellular respiration as bacterial mutants lacking cytochrome bo oxidase displayed lower extracellular ATP levels. We have also shown that Escherichia coli (E. coli) and Salmonella actively depleted extracellular ATP and an ATP supplement in culture media enhanced the stationary survival of E. coli and Salmonella. In addition to E. coli and Salmonella the presence of the extracellular ATP was observed in a variety of bacterial species that contain human pathogens such as Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas, Klebsiella and Staphylococcus. Conclusion Our results indicate that extracellular ATP is produced by many bacterial species during growth and extracellular ATP may serve a role in the bacterial physiology. PMID:24364860

  13. Extracellular adenosine triphosphate and adenosine in cancer.

    PubMed

    Stagg, J; Smyth, M J

    2010-09-30

    Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is actively released in the extracellular environment in response to tissue damage and cellular stress. Through the activation of P2X and P2Y receptors, extracellular ATP enhances tissue repair, promotes the recruitment of immune phagocytes and dendritic cells, and acts as a co-activator of NLR family, pyrin domain-containing 3 (NLRP3) inflammasomes. The conversion of extracellular ATP to adenosine, in contrast, essentially through the enzymatic activity of the ecto-nucleotidases CD39 and CD73, acts as a negative-feedback mechanism to prevent excessive immune responses. Here we review the effects of extracellular ATP and adenosine on tumorigenesis. First, we summarize the functions of extracellular ATP and adenosine in the context of tumor immunity. Second, we present an overview of the immunosuppressive and pro-angiogenic effects of extracellular adenosine. Third, we present experimental evidence that extracellular ATP and adenosine receptors are expressed by tumor cells and enhance tumor growth. Finally, we discuss recent studies, including our own work, which suggest that therapeutic approaches that promote ATP-mediated activation of inflammasomes, or inhibit the accumulation of tumor-derived extracellular adenosine, may constitute effective new means to induce anticancer activity.

  14. Patterns of extracellular enzyme activities and microbial metabolism in an Arctic fjord of Svalbard and in the northern Gulf of Mexico: contrasts in carbon processing by pelagic microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Arnosti, Carol; Steen, Andrew D

    2013-01-01

    The microbial community composition of polar and temperate ocean waters differs substantially, but the potential functional consequences of these differences are largely unexplored. We measured bacterial production, glucose metabolism, and the abilities of microbial communities to hydrolyze a range of polysaccharides in an Arctic fjord of Svalbard (Smeerenburg Fjord), and thus to initiate remineralization of high-molecular weight organic matter. We compared these data with similar measurements previously carried out in the northern Gulf of Mexico in order to investigate whether differences in the spectrum of enzyme activities measurable in Arctic and temperate environments are reflected in "downstream" aspects of microbial metabolism (metabolism of monomers and biomass production). Only four of six polysaccharide substrates were hydrolyzed in Smeerenburg Fjord; all were hydrolyzed in the upper water column of the Gulf. These patterns are consistent on an interannual basis. Bacterial protein production was comparable at both locations, but the pathways of glucose utilization differed. Glucose incorporation rate constants were comparatively higher in Svalbard, but glucose respiration rate constants were higher in surface waters of the Gulf. As a result, at the time of sampling ca. 75% of the glucose was incorporated into biomass in Svalbard, but in the northern Gulf of Mexico most of the glucose was respired to CO2. A limited range of enzyme activities is therefore not a sign of a dormant community or one unable to further process substrates resulting from extracellular enzymatic hydrolysis. The ultimate fate of carbohydrates in marine waters, however, is strongly dependent upon the specific capabilities of heterotrophic microbial communities in these disparate environments.

  15. Patterns of extracellular enzyme activities and microbial metabolism in an Arctic fjord of Svalbard and in the northern Gulf of Mexico: contrasts in carbon processing by pelagic microbial communities

    PubMed Central

    Arnosti, Carol; Steen, Andrew D.

    2013-01-01

    The microbial community composition of polar and temperate ocean waters differs substantially, but the potential functional consequences of these differences are largely unexplored. We measured bacterial production, glucose metabolism, and the abilities of microbial communities to hydrolyze a range of polysaccharides in an Arctic fjord of Svalbard (Smeerenburg Fjord), and thus to initiate remineralization of high-molecular weight organic matter. We compared these data with similar measurements previously carried out in the northern Gulf of Mexico in order to investigate whether differences in the spectrum of enzyme activities measurable in Arctic and temperate environments are reflected in “downstream” aspects of microbial metabolism (metabolism of monomers and biomass production). Only four of six polysaccharide substrates were hydrolyzed in Smeerenburg Fjord; all were hydrolyzed in the upper water column of the Gulf. These patterns are consistent on an interannual basis. Bacterial protein production was comparable at both locations, but the pathways of glucose utilization differed. Glucose incorporation rate constants were comparatively higher in Svalbard, but glucose respiration rate constants were higher in surface waters of the Gulf. As a result, at the time of sampling ca. 75% of the glucose was incorporated into biomass in Svalbard, but in the northern Gulf of Mexico most of the glucose was respired to CO2. A limited range of enzyme activities is therefore not a sign of a dormant community or one unable to further process substrates resulting from extracellular enzymatic hydrolysis. The ultimate fate of carbohydrates in marine waters, however, is strongly dependent upon the specific capabilities of heterotrophic microbial communities in these disparate environments. PMID:24198812

  16. Contrast Materials

    MedlinePlus

    ... veins of the body, including vessels in the brain, neck, chest, abdomen, pelvis and legs soft tissues of the body, including the muscles, fat and skin brain breast Microbubble Contrast Materials Microbubble contrast materials are ...

  17. Yeast extracellular proteases.

    PubMed

    Ogrydziak, D M

    1993-01-01

    Many species of yeast secrete significant amounts of protease(s). In this article, results of numerous surveys of yeast extracellular protease production have been compiled and inconsistencies in the data and limitations of the methodology have been examined. Regulation, purification, characterization, and processing of yeast extracellular proteases are reviewed. Results obtained from the sequences of cloned genes, especially the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Bar protease, the Candida albicans acid protease, and the Yarrowia lipolytica alkaline protease, have been emphasized. Biotechnological applications and the medical relevance of yeast extracellular proteases are covered. Yeast extracellular proteases have potential in beer and wine stabilization, and they probably contribute to pathogenicity of Candida spp. Yeast extracellular protease genes also provide secretion and processing signals for yeast expression systems designed for secretion of heterologous proteins. Coverage of the secretion of foreign proteases such as prochymosin, urokinase, and tissue plasminogen activator by yeast in included.

  18. Contrastive Lexicology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hartmann, R. R. K.

    This paper deals with the relation between etymologically related words in different languages. A survey is made of seven stages in the development of contrastive lexicology. These are: prelinguistic word studies, semantics, lexicography, translation, foreign language learning, bilingualism, and finally contrastive analysis. Concerning contrastive…

  19. Contrastive Analysis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    James, Carl

    Contrastive analysis is viewed as an interlinguistic, bidirectional phenomenon which is concerned with both the form and function of language. As such, contrastive analysis must view language psycholinguistically and sociolinguistically as a system to be both described and acquired. Due to the need for a psychological component in the analysis,…

  20. Extracellular calcium sensing and extracellular calcium signaling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, E. M.; MacLeod, R. J.; O'Malley, B. W. (Principal Investigator)

    2001-01-01

    The cloning of a G protein-coupled extracellular Ca(2+) (Ca(o)(2+))-sensing receptor (CaR) has elucidated the molecular basis for many of the previously recognized effects of Ca(o)(2+) on tissues that maintain systemic Ca(o)(2+) homeostasis, especially parathyroid chief cells and several cells in the kidney. The availability of the cloned CaR enabled the development of DNA and antibody probes for identifying the CaR's mRNA and protein, respectively, within these and other tissues. It also permitted the identification of human diseases resulting from inactivating or activating mutations of the CaR gene and the subsequent generation of mice with targeted disruption of the CaR gene. The characteristic alterations in parathyroid and renal function in these patients and in the mice with "knockout" of the CaR gene have provided valuable information on the CaR's physiological roles in these tissues participating in mineral ion homeostasis. Nevertheless, relatively little is known about how the CaR regulates other tissues involved in systemic Ca(o)(2+) homeostasis, particularly bone and intestine. Moreover, there is evidence that additional Ca(o)(2+) sensors may exist in bone cells that mediate some or even all of the known effects of Ca(o)(2+) on these cells. Even more remains to be learned about the CaR's function in the rapidly growing list of cells that express it but are uninvolved in systemic Ca(o)(2+) metabolism. Available data suggest that the receptor serves numerous roles outside of systemic mineral ion homeostasis, ranging from the regulation of hormonal secretion and the activities of various ion channels to the longer term control of gene expression, programmed cell death (apoptosis), and cellular proliferation. In some cases, the CaR on these "nonhomeostatic" cells responds to local changes in Ca(o)(2+) taking place within compartments of the extracellular fluid (ECF) that communicate with the outside environment (e.g., the gastrointestinal tract). In others

  1. Contrast lipocryolysis

    PubMed Central

    Pinto, Hernán; Melamed, Graciela

    2014-01-01

    Alternative crystal structures are possible for all lipids and each different crystal structure is called a polymorphic form. Inter-conversion between polymorphisms would imply the possibility of leaning crystal formation toward the most effective polymorphism for adipocyte destruction. Food industry has been tempering lipids for decades. Tempering technology applied to lipocryolysis gave birth to “contrast lipocryolysis”, which involves pre- and post-lipocryolysis fat layer heating as part of a specific tempering protocol. In this study, we evaluated the skinfold thickness of 10 subjects after a single contrast lipocryolysis session and witnessed important and fast reductions. PMID:25068088

  2. Bacterial extracellular lignin peroxidase

    DOEpatents

    Crawford, Donald L.; Ramachandra, Muralidhara

    1993-01-01

    A newly discovered lignin peroxidase enzyme is provided. The enzyme is obtained from a bacterial source and is capable of degrading the lignin portion of lignocellulose in the presence of hydrogen peroxide. The enzyme is extracellular, oxidative, inducible by lignin, larch wood xylan, or related substrates and capable of attacking certain lignin substructure chemical bonds that are not degradable by fungal lignin peroxidases.

  3. Contrast cystography.

    PubMed

    Essman, Stephanie C

    2005-02-01

    Cystography is a radiographic study performed to aid in evaluation of the urinary bladder for extramural, mural, or intraluminal lesions. These lesions may primarily involve the urinary bladder or may be an extension of disease from adjacent organs. Cystography is easy to perform with relatively few complications. Different types of cystography (positive versus negative contrast) may be used depending on the type of information that the clinician hopes to obtain. Although a valuable technique, it is important to correlate the findings on cystography with other clinical information to arrive at the final diagnosis.

  4. Identification of Phosphorylation Sites on Extracellular Corneal Epithelial Cell Maspin

    PubMed Central

    Narayan, Malathi; Mirza, Shama P.; Twining, Sally S.

    2011-01-01

    Maspin, a 42-kDa non classical serine protease inhibitor (serpin) is expressed by epithelial cells of various tissues including the cornea. The protein localizes to the nucleus and cytosol, and is present in the extracellular space. While extracellular maspin regulates corneal stromal fibroblast adhesion and inhibits angiogenesis during wound healing in the cornea, the molecular mechanism of its extracellular functions is unclear. We hypothesized that identifying post-translational modifications of maspin, such as phosphorylation, may help decipher its mode of action. The focus of this study was on the identification of phosphorylation sites on extracellular maspin, since the extracellular form of the molecule is implicated in several functions. Multi-stage fragmentation mass spectrometry was used to identify sites of phosphorylation on extracellular corneal epithelial cell maspin. A total of eight serine and threonine phosphorylation sites (Thr50, Ser97, Thr118, Thr157, Ser240, Ser298, Thr310, Ser316) were identified on the extracellular forms of the molecule. Phosphorylation of tyrosine residues on extracellular maspin was not detected on extracellular maspin from corneal epithelial cell, in contrast to breast epithelial cells. This study provides the basis for further investigation into the functional role of phosphorylation of corneal epithelial maspin. PMID:21365746

  5. Extracellular histones inhibit efferocytosis.

    PubMed

    Friggeri, Arnaud; Banerjee, Sami; Xie, Na; Cui, Huachun; De Freitas, Andressa; Zerfaoui, Mourad; Dupont, Hervé; Abraham, Edward; Liu, Gang

    2012-07-18

    The uptake and clearance of apoptotic cells by macrophages and other phagocytic cells, a process called efferocytosis, is a major component in the resolution of inflammation. Increased concentrations of extracellular histones are found during acute inflammatory states and appear to contribute to organ system dysfunction and mortality. In these studies, we examined the potential role of histones in modulating efferocytosis. We found that phagocytosis of apoptotic neutrophils or thymocytes by macrophages was significantly diminished in the presence of histones H3 or H4, but not histone H1. Histone H3 demonstrated direct binding to macrophages, an effect that was diminished by preincubation of macrophages with the opsonins growth arrest-specific gene 6 (Gas6) and milk fat globule-epidermal growth factor (EGF) 8 (MFG-E8). Incubation of histone H3 with soluble α(v)β₅ integrin and Mer, but not with α(v)β₃, diminished its binding to macrophages. Phagocytosis of apoptotic cells by alveolar macrophages in vivo was diminished in the presence of histone H3. Incubation of histone H3 with activated protein C, a treatment that degrades histones, abrogated its inhibitory effects on efferocytosis under both in vitro and in vivo conditions. The present studies demonstrate that histones have inhibitory effects on efferocytosis, suggesting a new mechanism by which extracellular histones contribute to acute inflammatory processes and tissue injury.

  6. Neutrophil Extracellular Traps Go Viral

    PubMed Central

    Schönrich, Günther; Raftery, Martin J.

    2016-01-01

    Neutrophils are the most numerous immune cells. Their importance as the first line of defense against bacterial and fungal pathogens is well described. In contrast, the role of neutrophils in controlling viral infections is less clear. Bacterial and fungal pathogens can stimulate neutrophils extracellular traps (NETs) in a process called NETosis. Although NETosis has previously been described as a special form of programmed cell death, there are forms of NET production that do not end with the demise of neutrophils. As an end result of NETosis, genomic DNA complexed with microbicidal proteins is expelled from neutrophils. These structures can kill pathogens or at least prevent their local spread within host tissue. On the other hand, disproportionate NET formation can cause local or systemic damage. Only recently, it was recognized that viruses can also induce NETosis. In this review, we discuss the mechanisms by which NETs are produced in the context of viral infection and how this may contribute to both antiviral immunity and immunopathology. Finally, we shed light on viral immune evasion mechanisms targeting NETs. PMID:27698656

  7. Extracellular matrix structure.

    PubMed

    Theocharis, Achilleas D; Skandalis, Spyros S; Gialeli, Chrysostomi; Karamanos, Nikos K

    2016-02-01

    Extracellular matrix (ECM) is a non-cellular three-dimensional macromolecular network composed of collagens, proteoglycans/glycosaminoglycans, elastin, fibronectin, laminins, and several other glycoproteins. Matrix components bind each other as well as cell adhesion receptors forming a complex network into which cells reside in all tissues and organs. Cell surface receptors transduce signals into cells from ECM, which regulate diverse cellular functions, such as survival, growth, migration, and differentiation, and are vital for maintaining normal homeostasis. ECM is a highly dynamic structural network that continuously undergoes remodeling mediated by several matrix-degrading enzymes during normal and pathological conditions. Deregulation of ECM composition and structure is associated with the development and progression of several pathologic conditions. This article emphasizes in the complex ECM structure as to provide a better understanding of its dynamic structural and functional multipotency. Where relevant, the implication of the various families of ECM macromolecules in health and disease is also presented.

  8. Wingful, an extracellular feedback inhibitor of Wingless

    PubMed Central

    Gerlitz, Offer; Basler, Konrad

    2002-01-01

    Secreted peptide signals control many fundamental processes during animal development. Proper responses to these signals require cognate inducible feedback antagonists. Here we report the identification of a novel Drosophila Wingless (Wg) target gene, wingful (wf), and show that it encodes a potent extracellular feedback inhibitor of Wg. In contrast to the cytoplasmic protein Naked cuticle (Nkd), the only known Wg feedback antagonist, Wf functions during larval stages, when Nkd function is dispensable. We propose that Wf may provide feedback control for the long-range morphogen activities of Wg. PMID:12000788

  9. Commercial Cow Milk Contains Physically Stable Extracellular Vesicles Expressing Immunoregulatory TGF-β

    PubMed Central

    Bennink, Miranda B.; Broeren, Mathijs G. A.; van Caam, Arjan P. M.; Koenders, Marije I.; van Lent, Peter L. E. M.; van den Berg, Wim B.; de Vries, Marieke; van der Kraan, Peter M.; van de Loo, Fons A. J.

    2015-01-01

    Scope Extracellular vesicles, including exosomes, have been identified in all biological fluids and rediscovered as an important part of the intercellular communication. Breast milk also contains extracellular vesicles and the proposed biological function is to enhance the antimicrobial defense in newborns. It is, however, unknown whether extracellular vesicles are still present in commercial milk and, more importantly, whether they retained their bioactivity. Here, we characterize the extracellular vesicles present in semi-skimmed cow milk available for consumers and study their effect on T cells. Methods and Results Extracellular vesicles from commercial milk were isolated and characterized. Milk-derived extracellular vesicles contained several immunomodulating miRNAs and membrane protein CD63, characteristics of exosomes. In contrast to RAW 267.4 derived extracellular vesicles the milk-derived extracellular vesicles were extremely stable under degrading conditions, including low pH, boiling and freezing. Milk-derived extracellular vesicles were easily taken up by murine macrophages in vitro. Furthermore, we found that they can facilitate T cell differentiation towards the pathogenic Th17 lineage. Using a (CAGA)12-luc reporter assay we showed that these extracellular vesicles carried bioactive TGF-β, and that anti-TGF-β antibodies blocked Th17 differentiation. Conclusion Our findings show that commercial milk contains stable extracellular vesicles, including exosomes, and carry immunoregulatory cargo. These data suggest that the extracellular vesicles present in commercial cow milk remains intact in the gastrointestinal tract and exert an immunoregulatory effect. PMID:25822997

  10. Making recombinant extracellular matrix proteins.

    PubMed

    Ruggiero, Florence; Koch, Manuel

    2008-05-01

    A variety of approaches to understand extracellular matrix protein structure and function require production of recombinant proteins. Moreover, the expression of heterologous extracellular matrix proteins, in particular collagens, using the recombinant technology is of major interest to the biomedical industry. Although extracellular matrix proteins are large, modular and often multimeric, most of them have been successfully produced in various expression systems. This review provides important factors, including the design of the construct, the cloning strategies, the expression vectors, the transfection method and the host cell systems, to consider in choosing a reliable and cost-effective way to make recombinant extracellular matrix proteins. Advantages and drawbacks of each system have been appraised. Protocols that may ease efficient recombinant production of extracellular matrix are described. Emphasis is placed on the recombinant collagen production. Members of the collagen superfamily exhibit specific structural features and generally require complex post-translational modifications to retain full biological activity that make more arduous their recombinant production.

  11. The Extracellular Matrix of Candida albicans Biofilms Impairs Formation of Neutrophil Extracellular Traps

    PubMed Central

    Cabezas-Olcoz, Jonathan; Wang, Steven X.; Huttenlocher, Anna; Ansari, Hamayail; Nett, Jeniel E.

    2016-01-01

    Neutrophils release extracellular traps (NETs) in response to planktonic C. albicans. These complexes composed of DNA, histones, and proteins inhibit Candida growth and dissemination. Considering the resilience of Candida biofilms to host defenses, we examined the neutrophil response to C. albicans during biofilm growth. In contrast to planktonic C. albicans, biofilms triggered negligible release of NETs. Time lapse imaging confirmed the impairment in NET release and revealed neutrophils adhering to hyphae and migrating on the biofilm. NET inhibition depended on an intact extracellular biofilm matrix as physical or genetic disruption of this component resulted in NET release. Biofilm inhibition of NETosis could not be overcome by protein kinase C activation via phorbol myristate acetate (PMA) and was associated with suppression of neutrophil reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. The degree of impaired NET release correlated with resistance to neutrophil attack. The clinical relevance of the role for extracellular matrix in diminishing NET production was corroborated in vivo using a rat catheter model. The C. albicans pmr1Δ/Δ, defective in production of matrix mannan, appeared to elicit a greater abundance of NETs by scanning electron microscopy imaging, which correlated with a decreased fungal burden. Together, these findings show that C. albicans biofilms impair neutrophil response through an inhibitory pathway induced by the extracellular matrix. PMID:27622514

  12. Contrast Adaptation Contributes to Contrast-Invariance of Orientation Tuning of Primate V1 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Nowak, Lionel G.; Barone, Pascal

    2009-01-01

    Background Studies in rodents and carnivores have shown that orientation tuning width of single neurons does not change when stimulus contrast is modified. However, in these studies, stimuli were presented for a relatively long duration (e. g., 4 seconds), making it possible that contrast adaptation contributed to contrast-invariance of orientation tuning. Our first purpose was to determine, in marmoset area V1, whether orientation tuning is still contrast-invariant with the stimulation duration is comparable to that of a visual fixation. Methodology/Principal Findings We performed extracellular recordings and examined orientation tuning of single-units using static sine-wave gratings that were flashed for 200 msec. Sixteen orientations and three contrast levels, representing low, medium and high values in the range of effective contrasts for each neuron, were randomly intermixed. Contrast adaptation being a slow phenomenon, cells did not have enough time to adapt to each contrast individually. With this stimulation protocol, we found that the tuning width obtained at intermediate contrast was reduced to 89% (median), and that at low contrast to 76%, of that obtained at high contrast. Therefore, when probed with briefly flashed stimuli, orientation tuning is not contrast-invariant in marmoset V1. Our second purpose was to determine whether contrast adaptation contributes to contrast-invariance of orientation tuning. Stationary gratings were presented, as previously, for 200 msec with randomly varying orientations, but the contrast was kept constant within stimulation blocks lasting >20 sec, allowing for adaptation to the single contrast in use. In these conditions, tuning widths obtained at low contrast were still significantly less than at high contrast (median 85%). However, tuning widths obtained with medium and high contrast stimuli no longer differed significantly. Conclusions/Significance Orientation tuning does not appear to be contrast-invariant when

  13. Extracellular RNA in aging.

    PubMed

    Dluzen, Douglas F; Noren Hooten, Nicole; Evans, Michele K

    2017-03-01

    Since the discovery of extracellular RNA (exRNA) in circulation and other bodily fluids, there has been considerable effort to catalog and assess whether exRNAs can be used as markers for health and disease. A variety of exRNA species have been identified including messenger RNA and noncoding RNA such as microRNA (miRNA), small nucleolar RNA, transfer RNA, and long noncoding RNA. Age-related changes in exRNA abundance have been observed, and it is likely that some of these transcripts play a role in aging. In this review, we summarize the current state of exRNA profiling in various body fluids and discuss age-related changes in exRNA abundance that have been identified in humans and other model organisms. miRNAs, in particular, are a major focus of current research and we will highlight and discuss the potential role that specific miRNAs might play in age-related phenotypes and disease. We will also review challenges facing this emerging field and various strategies that can be used for the validation and future use of exRNAs as markers of aging and age-related disease. WIREs RNA 2017, 8:e1385. doi: 10.1002/wrna.1385 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.

  14. Salt stress represses production of extracellular proteases in Bacillus pumilus.

    PubMed

    Liu, R F; Huang, C L; Feng, H

    2015-05-11

    Bacillus pumilus is able to secrete subtilisin-like prote-ases, one of which has been purified and characterized biochemically, demonstrating great potential for use in industrial applications. In the current study, the biosynthesis and transcription of extracellular pro-teases in B. pumilus (BA06) under salt stress were investigated using various methods, including a proteolytic assay, zymogram analysis, and real-time PCR. Our results showed that total extracellular proteolytic activity, both in fermentation broth and on milk-containing agar plates, was considerably repressed by salt in a dosage-dependent manner. As Bacillus species usually secret multiple extracellular proteases, a vari-ety of individual extracellular protease encoding genes were selected for real-time PCR analysis. It was shown that proteases encoded by the aprE and aprX genes were the major proteases in the fermentation broth in terms of their transcripts in B. pumilus. Further, transcription of aprE, aprX, and epr genes was indeed repressed by salt stress. In con-trast, transcription of other genes (e.g., vpr and wprA) was not repressed or significantly affected by the salt. Conclusively, salt stress represses total extracellular proteolytic activity in B. pumilus, which can largely be ascribed to suppression of the major protease-encoding genes (aprE, aprX) at the transcriptional level. In contrast, transcription of other pro-tease-encoding genes (e.g., vpr, wprA) was not repressed by salt stress.

  15. Extracellular matrix and wound healing.

    PubMed

    Maquart, F X; Monboisse, J C

    2014-04-01

    Extracellular matrix has been known for a long time as an architectural support for the tissues. Many recent data, however, have shown that extracellular matrix macromolecules (collagens, elastin, glycosaminoglycans, proteoglycans and connective tissue glycoproteins) are able to regulate many important cell functions, such as proliferation, migration, protein synthesis or degradation, apoptosis, etc., making them able to play an important role in the wound repair process. Not only the intact macromolecules but some of their specific domains, that we called "Matrikines", are also able to regulate many cell activities. In this article, we will summarize main findings showing the effects of extracellular matrix macromolecules and matrikines on connective tissue and epithelial cells, particularly in skin, and their potential implication in the wound healing process. These examples show that extracellular matrix macromolecules or some of their specific domains may play a major role in wound healing. Better knowledge of these interactions may suggest new therapeutic targets in wound healing defects.

  16. Extracellular calmodulin regulates growth and cAMP-mediated chemotaxis in Dictyostelium discoideum

    SciTech Connect

    O'Day, Danton H.; Huber, Robert J.; Suarez, Andres

    2012-09-07

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Extracellular calmodulin is present throughout growth and development in Dictyostelium. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Extracellular calmodulin localizes within the ECM during development. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Extracellular calmodulin inhibits cell proliferation and increases chemotaxis. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Extracellular calmodulin exists in eukaryotic microbes. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Extracellular calmodulin may be functionally as important as intracellular calmodulin. -- Abstract: The existence of extracellular calmodulin (CaM) has had a long and controversial history. CaM is a ubiquitous calcium-binding protein that has been found in every eukaryotic cell system. Calcium-free apo-CaM and Ca{sup 2+}/CaM exert their effects by binding to and regulating the activity of CaM-binding proteins (CaMBPs). Most of the research done to date on CaM and its CaMBPs has focused on their intracellular functions. The presence of extracellular CaM is well established in a number of plants where it functions in proliferation, cell wall regeneration, gene regulation and germination. While CaM has been detected extracellularly in several animal species, including frog, rat, rabbit and human, its extracellular localization and functions are less well established. In contrast the study of extracellular CaM in eukaryotic microbes remains to be done. Here we show that CaM is constitutively expressed and secreted throughout asexual development in Dictyostelium where the presence of extracellular CaM dose-dependently inhibits cell proliferation but increases cAMP mediated chemotaxis. During development, extracellular CaM localizes within the slime sheath where it coexists with at least one CaMBP, the matricellular CaM-binding protein CyrA. Coupled with previous research, this work provides direct evidence for the existence of extracellular CaM in the Dictyostelium and provides insight into its functions in this model amoebozoan.

  17. Extracellular enzyme kinetics scale with resource availability

    EPA Science Inventory

    Microbial community metabolism relies on external digestion, mediated by extracellular enzymes that break down complex organic matter into molecules small enough for cells to assimilate. We analyzed the kinetics of 40 extracellular enzymes that mediate the degradation and assimi...

  18. Neutrophil Extracellular Traps and Microcrystals

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Neutrophil extracellular traps represent a fascinating mechanism by which PMNs entrap extracellular microbes. The primary purpose of this innate immune mechanism is thought to localize the infection at an early stage. Interestingly, the ability of different microcrystals to induce NET formation has been recently described. Microcrystals are insoluble crystals with a size of 1–100 micrometers that have different composition and shape. Microcrystals have it in common that they irritate phagocytes including PMNs and typically trigger an inflammatory response. This review is the first to summarize observations with regard to PMN activation and NET release induced by microcrystals. Gout-causing monosodium urate crystals, pseudogout-causing calcium pyrophosphate dehydrate crystals, cholesterol crystals associated with atherosclerosis, silicosis-causing silica crystals, and adjuvant alum crystals are discussed. PMID:28373994

  19. Analysis of Yeast Extracellular Vesicles.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Marcio L; Oliveira, Debora L; Vargas, Gabriele; Girard-Dias, Wendell; Franzen, Anderson J; Frasés, Susana; Miranda, Kildare; Nimrichter, Leonardo

    2016-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles (EV) are important carriers of biologically active components in a number of organisms, including fungal cells. Experimental characterization of fungal EVs suggested that these membranous compartments are likely involved in the regulation of several biological events. In fungal pathogens, these events include mechanisms of disease progression and/or control, suggesting potential targets for therapeutic intervention or disease prophylaxis. In this manuscript we describe methods that have been used in the last 10 years for the characterization of EVs produced by yeast forms of several fungal species. Experimental approaches detailed in this chapter include ultracentrifugation methods for EV fractionation, chromatographic approaches for analysis of EV lipids, microscopy techniques for analysis of both intracellular and extracellular vesicular compartments, interaction of EVs with host cells, and physical chemical analysis of EVs by dynamic light scattering.

  20. The Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wardhaugh, Ronald

    1970-01-01

    Discusses the strong contrastive analysis hypothesis, which claims predictive powers for contrastive analysis, and the weak hypothesis, which claims only that contrastive analysis can help account for observed difficulties in second language learning. The strong hypothesis is found untenable, and difficulties with the weak hypothesis are discussed…

  1. Extracellular secretion of recombinant proteins

    DOEpatents

    Linger, Jeffrey G.; Darzins, Aldis

    2014-07-22

    Nucleic acids encoding secretion signals, expression vectors containing the nucleic acids, and host cells containing the expression vectors are disclosed. Also disclosed are polypeptides that contain the secretion signals and methods of producing polypeptides, including methods of directing the extracellular secretion of the polypeptides. Exemplary embodiments include cellulase proteins fused to secretion signals, methods to produce and isolate these polypeptides, and methods to degrade lignocellulosic biomass.

  2. Diffusion in Brain Extracellular Space

    PubMed Central

    Syková, Eva; Nicholson, Charles

    2009-01-01

    Diffusion in the extracellular space (ECS) of the brain is constrained by the volume fraction and the tortuosity and a modified diffusion equation represents the transport behavior of many molecules in the brain. Deviations from the equation reveal loss of molecules across the blood-brain barrier, through cellular uptake, binding or other mechanisms. Early diffusion measurements used radiolabeled sucrose and other tracers. Presently, the real-time iontophoresis (RTI) method is employed for small ions and the integrative optical imaging (IOI) method for fluorescent macromolecules, including dextrans or proteins. Theoretical models and simulations of the ECS have explored the influence of ECS geometry, effects of dead-space microdomains, extracellular matrix and interaction of macromolecules with ECS channels. Extensive experimental studies with the RTI method employing the cation tetramethylammonium (TMA) in normal brain tissue show that the volume fraction of the ECS typically is about 20% and the tortuosity about 1.6 (i.e. free diffusion coefficient of TMA is reduced by 2.6), although there are regional variations. These parameters change during development and aging. Diffusion properties have been characterized in several interventions, including brain stimulation, osmotic challenge and knockout of extracellular matrix components. Measurements have also been made during ischemia, in models of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases and in human gliomas. Overall, these studies improve our conception of ECS structure and the roles of glia and extracellular matrix in modulating the ECS microenvironment. Knowledge of ECS diffusion properties are valuable in contexts ranging from understanding extrasynaptic volume transmission to the development of paradigms for drug delivery to the brain. PMID:18923183

  3. Role of extracellular superoxide dismutase in hypertension.

    PubMed

    Gongora, Maria Carolina; Qin, Zhenyu; Laude, Karine; Kim, Ha Won; McCann, Louise; Folz, J Rodney; Dikalov, Sergey; Fukai, Tohru; Harrison, David G

    2006-09-01

    We previously found that angiotensin II-induced hypertension increases vascular extracellular superoxide dismutase (ecSOD), and proposed that this is a compensatory mechanism that blunts the hypertensive response and preserves endothelium-dependent vasodilatation. To test this hypothesis, we studied ecSOD-deficient mice. ecSOD(-/-) and C57Blk/6 mice had similar blood pressure at baseline; however, the hypertension caused by angiotensin II was greater in ecSOD(-/-) compared with wild-type mice (168 versus 147 mm Hg, respectively; P<0.01). In keeping with this, angiotensin II increased superoxide and reduced endothelium-dependent vasodilatation in small mesenteric arterioles to a greater extent in ecSOD(-/-) than in wild-type mice. In contrast to these findings in resistance vessels, angiotensin II paradoxically improved endothelium-dependent vasodilatation, reduced intracellular and extracellular superoxide, and increased NO production in aortas of ecSOD(-/-) mice. Whereas aortic expression of endothelial NO synthase, Cu/ZnSOD, and MnSOD were not altered in ecSOD(-/-) mice, the activity of Cu/ZnSOD was increased by 80% after angiotensin II infusion. This was associated with a concomitant increase in expression of the copper chaperone for Cu/ZnSOD in the aorta but not in the mesenteric arteries. Moreover, the angiotensin II-induced increase in aortic reduced nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase activity was diminished in ecSOD(-/-) mice as compared with controls. Thus, during angiotensin II infusion, ecSOD reduces hypertension, minimizes vascular superoxide production, and preserves endothelial function in resistance arterioles. We also identified novel compensatory mechanisms involving upregulation of copper chaperone for Cu/ZnSOD, increased Cu/ZnSOD activity, and decreased reduced nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase activity in larger vessels. These compensatory mechanisms preserve large vessel function when ecSOD is absent in

  4. Mechanotransduction and extracellular matrix homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Humphrey, Jay D.; Dufresne, Eric R.; Schwartz, Martin A.

    2015-01-01

    Preface Soft connective tissues at steady state are yet dynamic; resident cells continually read environmental cues and respond to promote homeostasis, including maintenance of the mechanical properties of the extracellular matrix that are fundamental to cellular and tissue health. The mechanosensing process involves assessment of the mechanics of the matrix by the cells through integrins and the actomyosin cytoskeleton, and is followed by a mechano-regulation process that includes the deposition, rearrangement, or removal of matrix to maintain overall form and function. Progress toward understanding the molecular, cellular, and tissue scale effects that promote mechanical homeostasis has helped identify key questions for future research. PMID:25355505

  5. The evolution of extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Ozbek, Suat; Balasubramanian, Prakash G; Chiquet-Ehrismann, Ruth; Tucker, Richard P; Adams, Josephine C

    2010-12-01

    We present a perspective on the molecular evolution of the extracellular matrix (ECM) in metazoa that draws on research publications and data from sequenced genomes and expressed sequence tag libraries. ECM components do not function in isolation, and the biological ECM system or "adhesome" also depends on posttranslational processing enzymes, cell surface receptors, and extracellular proteases. We focus principally on the adhesome of internal tissues and discuss its origins at the dawn of the metazoa and the expansion of complexity that occurred in the chordate lineage. The analyses demonstrate very high conservation of a core adhesome that apparently evolved in a major wave of innovation in conjunction with the origin of metazoa. Integrin, CD36, and certain domains predate the metazoa, and some ECM-related proteins are identified in choanoflagellates as predicted sequences. Modern deuterostomes and vertebrates have many novelties and elaborations of ECM as a result of domain shuffling, domain innovations and gene family expansions. Knowledge of the evolution of metazoan ECM is important for understanding how it is built as a system, its roles in normal tissues and disease processes, and has relevance for tissue engineering, the development of artificial organs, and the goals of synthetic biology.

  6. Extracellular nucleotide signaling in plants

    SciTech Connect

    Stacey, Gary

    2016-09-08

    Over the life of this funded project, our research group identified and characterized two key receptor proteins in plants; one mediating the innate immunity response to chitin and the other elucidating the key receptor for extracellular ATP. In the case of chitin recognition, we recently described the quaternary structure of this receptor, shedding light on how the receptor functions. Perhaps more importantly, we demonstrated that all plants have the ability to recognize both chitin oligomers and lipochitooligosacchardes, fundamentally changing how the community views the evolution of these systems and strategies that might be used, for example, to extend symbiotic nitrogen fixation to non-legumes. Our discovery of DORN1 opens a new chapter in plant physiology documenting conclusively that eATP is an important extracellular signal in plants, as it is in animals. At this point, we cannot predict just how far reaching this discovery may prove to be but we are convinced that eATP signaling is fundamental to plant growth and development and, hence, we believe that the future will be very exciting for the study of DORN1 and its overall function in plants.

  7. Ultrasound contrast agents

    PubMed Central

    Ignee, Andre; Atkinson, Nathan S. S.; Schuessler, Gudrun; Dietrich, Christoph F.

    2016-01-01

    Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) plays an important role in imaging of the mediastinum and abdominal organs. Since the introduction of US contrast agents (UCA) for transabdominal US, attempts have been made to apply contrast-enhanced US techniques also to EUS. Since 2003, specific contrast-enhanced imaging was possible using EUS. Important studies have been published regarding contrast-enhanced EUS and the characterization of focal pancreatic lesions, lymph nodes, and subepithelial tumors. In this manuscript, we describe the relevant UCA, their application, and specific image acquisition as well as the principles of image tissue characterization using contrast-enhanced EUS. Safety issues, potential future developments, and EUS-specific issues are reviewed. PMID:27824024

  8. Micro- and macrorheology of jellyfish extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Gambini, Camille; Abou, Bérengère; Ponton, Alain; Cornelissen, Annemiek J M

    2012-01-04

    Mechanical properties of the extracellular matrix (ECM) play a key role in tissue organization and morphogenesis. Rheological properties of jellyfish ECM (mesoglea) were measured in vivo at the cellular scale by passive microrheology techniques: microbeads were injected in jellyfish ECM and their Brownian motion was recorded to determine the mechanical properties of the surrounding medium. Microrheology results were compared with macrorheological measurements performed with a shear rheometer on slices of jellyfish mesoglea. We found that the ECM behaved as a viscoelastic gel at the macroscopic scale and as a much softer and heterogeneous viscoelastic structure at the microscopic scale. The fibrous architecture of the mesoglea, as observed by differential interference contrast and scanning electron microscopy, was in accord with these scale-dependent mechanical properties. Furthermore, the evolution of the mechanical properties of the ECM during aging was investigated by measuring microrheological properties at different jellyfish sizes. We measured that the ECM in adult jellyfish was locally stiffer than in juvenile ones. We argue that this stiffening is a consequence of local aggregations of fibers occurring gradually during aging of the jellyfish mesoglea and is enhanced by repetitive muscular contractions of the jellyfish.

  9. Protective Effects of Repetitive Injections of Radiographic Contrast Media on the Subsequent Tolerance to Ischemia in the Isolated Rat Heart

    SciTech Connect

    Falck, Geir; Bruvold, Morten; Schjott, Jan; Jynge, Per

    2000-11-15

    Purpose: Despite detailed knowledge of the effects of X-ray contrast media on cardiac function, no studies have examined the effect of contrast media injections on the subsequent tolerance to ischemia in the heart.Methods: Isolated perfused rat hearts were exposed to repetitive injections of iohexol, iodixanol, or ioxaglate before 30 min of global ischemia and 120 min of reperfusion. These groups were compared with control (no pretreatment) and ischemic preconditioning known to reduce infarct size. Physiologic variables and infarct size were measured. Results: Pretreatment with iodixanol reduced infarct size significantly compared with control and thus afforded protection against ischemia. Injections with iohexol and ioxaglate reduced infarct size, although not significantly, compared with control.Conclusion: Pretreatment of the isolated rat heart with commonly used contrast media enhances the cardiac tolerance to subsequent ischemia. The mechanism behind this protective effect could not be determined, but could involve stretching of the heart and/or generation of nitric oxide.

  10. Compressive Phase Contrast Tomography

    SciTech Connect

    Maia, Filipe; MacDowell, Alastair; Marchesini, Stefano; Padmore, Howard A.; Parkinson, Dula Y.; Pien, Jack; Schirotzek, Andre; Yang, Chao

    2010-09-01

    When x-rays penetrate soft matter, their phase changes more rapidly than their amplitude. Interference effects visible with high brightness sources creates higher contrast, edge enhanced images. When the object is piecewise smooth (made of big blocks of a few components), such higher contrast datasets have a sparse solution. We apply basis pursuit solvers to improve SNR, remove ring artifacts, reduce the number of views and radiation dose from phase contrast datasets collected at the Hard X-Ray Micro Tomography Beamline at the Advanced Light Source. We report a GPU code for the most computationally intensive task, the gridding and inverse gridding algorithm (non uniform sampled Fourier transform).

  11. [Extracellular ribonuclease from Bacillus thuringiensis].

    PubMed

    Chepurnova, N K; Liakhov, D L; Rechinskiĭ, V O; Karpeĭskiĭ, M Ia

    1988-04-01

    The ability of the strain Bacillus thuringiensis var. subtoxicus to produce extracellular ribonuclease (ribonuclease Bt) was studied. It was found that the culture medium possesses a RNA-depolymerizing activity whose maximum is observed 4-5 hours after the beginning of the linear growth phase. A three-step chromatography of the culture extract on phosphocellulose resulted in a homogeneous enzyme with a molecular mass of 12000 Da. The enzyme showed the maximum activity towards RNA at pH 8.5, catalyzed the hydrolysis of polyribonucleotides and guanosine-2',3'-cyclophosphate. Hence, the enzyme can be related to base-nonspecific cyclizing ribonucleases showing the guanylic specificity towards nucleoside-2',3'-cyclophosphates.

  12. Phase-contrast radiography.

    PubMed

    Gao, D; Pogany, A; Stevenson, A W; Wilkins, S W

    1998-01-01

    For the past 100 years, the paradigm for radiography has been premised on absorption as the sole means of contrast formation and on ray optics as the basis for image interpretation. A new conceptual approach to radiography has been developed that includes phase (ie, refractive) contrast and requires wave optics for proper treatment. This new approach greatly increases the amount of information that can be obtained with radiographic techniques and is particularly well suited to the imaging of soft tissue and of very small features in biologic samples. A key feature of the present technique of phase-contrast radiography is the use of a microfocus x-ray source about an order of magnitude (< or = 20 microm) smaller than that used in conventional radiography. Phase-contrast radiography offers a number of improvements over conventional radiography in a clinical setting, especially in soft-tissue imaging. These improvements include increased contrast resulting in improved visualization of anatomic detail, reduced absorbed dose to the patient, inherent image magnification and high spatial resolution, use of harder x rays, and relative ease of implementation. More technologically advanced detectors are currently being developed and commercialized, which will help fully realize the considerable potential of phase-contrast imaging.

  13. Phenazine virulence factor binding to extracellular DNA is important for Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm formation

    PubMed Central

    Das, Theerthankar; Kutty, Samuel K.; Tavallaie, Roya; Ibugo, Amaye I.; Panchompoo, Janjira; Sehar, Shama; Aldous, Leigh; Yeung, Amanda W. S.; Thomas, Shane R.; Kumar, Naresh; Gooding, J. Justin; Manefield, Mike

    2015-01-01

    Bacterial resistance to conventional antibiotics necessitates the identification of novel leads for infection control. Interference with extracellular phenomena, such as quorum sensing, extracellular DNA integrity and redox active metabolite release, represents a new frontier to control human pathogens such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa and hence reduce mortality. Here we reveal that the extracellular redox active virulence factor pyocyanin produced by P. aeruginosa binds directly to the deoxyribose-phosphate backbone of DNA and intercalates with DNA nitrogenous base pair regions. Binding results in local perturbations of the DNA double helix structure and enhanced electron transfer along the nucleic acid polymer. Pyocyanin binding to DNA also increases DNA solution viscosity. In contrast, antioxidants interacting with DNA and pyocyanin decrease DNA solution viscosity. Biofilms deficient in pyocyanin production and biofilms lacking extracellular DNA show similar architecture indicating the interaction is important in P. aeruginosa biofilm formation. PMID:25669133

  14. Extracellularly activatable nanocarriers for drug delivery to tumors

    PubMed Central

    Yeo, Yoon

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Nanoparticles for drug delivery to tumors need to satisfy two seemingly conflicting requirements: they should maintain physical and chemical stability during circulation and be able to interact with target cells and release drug at desired locations with no substantial delay. Unique microenvironment of tumors and externally-applied stimuli provide a useful means to maintain a balance between the two requirements. Areas covered We discuss nanoparticulate drug carriers that maintain stable structures in normal conditions but respond to stimuli for spatiotemporal control of drug delivery. We first define the desired effects of extracellular activation of nanoparticles and frequently used stimuli and review examples of extracellularly activated nanoparticles. Expert opinion Several challenges remain in developing extracellularly activatable nanoparticles. First, some of the stimuli-responsive NPs undergo incremental changes in response to stimuli, losing circulation stability. Second, the applicability of stimuli in clinical settings is limited due to the occasional occurrence of the activating conditions in normal tissues. Third, the construction of stimuli-responsive nanoparticles involves increasing complexity in nanoparticle structure and production methods. Future efforts are needed to identify new targeting conditions and increase the contrast between activated and non-activated NPs, while keeping the production methods simple and scalable. PMID:24950343

  15. Influence of extracellular zinc on M1 microglial activation

    PubMed Central

    Higashi, Youichirou; Aratake, Takaaki; Shimizu, Shogo; Shimizu, Takahiro; Nakamura, Kumiko; Tsuda, Masayuki; Yawata, Toshio; Ueba, Tetuya; Saito, Motoaki

    2017-01-01

    Extracellular zinc, which is released from hippocampal neurons in response to brain ischaemia, triggers morphological changes in microglia. Under ischaemic conditions, microglia exhibit two opposite activation states (M1 and M2 activation), which may be further regulated by the microenvironment. We examined the role of extracellular zinc on M1 activation of microglia. Pre-treatment of microglia with 30–60 μM ZnCl2 resulted in dose-dependent increases in interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6), and tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNFα) secretion when M1 activation was induced by lipopolysaccharide administration. In contrast, the cell-permeable zinc chelator TPEN, the radical scavenger Trolox, and the P2X7 receptor antagonist A438079 suppressed the effects of zinc pre-treatment on microglia. Furthermore, endogenous zinc release was induced by cerebral ischaemia–reperfusion, resulting in increased expression of IL-1β, IL-6, TNFα, and the microglial M1 surface marker CD16/32, without hippocampal neuronal cell loss, in addition to impairments in object recognition memory. However, these effects were suppressed by the zinc chelator CaEDTA. These findings suggest that extracellular zinc may prime microglia to enhance production of pro-inflammatory cytokines via P2X7 receptor activation followed by reactive oxygen species generation in response to stimuli that trigger M1 activation, and that these inflammatory processes may result in deficits in object recognition memory. PMID:28240322

  16. Psychophysical contrast calibration

    PubMed Central

    To, Long; Woods, Russell L; Goldstein, Robert B; Peli, Eli

    2013-01-01

    Electronic displays and computer systems offer numerous advantages for clinical vision testing. Laboratory and clinical measurements of various functions and in particular of (letter) contrast sensitivity require accurately calibrated display contrast. In the laboratory this is achieved using expensive light meters. We developed and evaluated a novel method that uses only psychophysical responses of a person with normal vision to calibrate the luminance contrast of displays for experimental and clinical applications. Our method combines psychophysical techniques (1) for detection (and thus elimination or reduction) of display saturating nonlinearities; (2) for luminance (gamma function) estimation and linearization without use of a photometer; and (3) to measure without a photometer the luminance ratios of the display’s three color channels that are used in a bit-stealing procedure to expand the luminance resolution of the display. Using a photometer we verified that the calibration achieved with this procedure is accurate for both LCD and CRT displays enabling testing of letter contrast sensitivity to 0.5%. Our visual calibration procedure enables clinical, internet and home implementation and calibration verification of electronic contrast testing. PMID:23643843

  17. Lamotrigine, carbamazepine and phenytoin differentially alter extracellular levels of 5-hydroxytryptamine, dopamine and amino acids.

    PubMed

    Ahmad, Shagufta; Fowler, Leslie J; Whitton, Peter S

    2005-02-01

    We have studied the effects of treatment with the anticonvulsants lamotrigine (LTG), phenytoin (PHN) and carbamazepine (CBZ) on basal and stimulated extracellular aspartate (ASP), glutamate (GLU), taurine (TAU), GABA, 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) and dopamine (DA) in the hippocampus of freely moving rats using microdialysis. All of the drugs investigated have had inhibition of Na(+) channel activity implicated as their principal mechanism of action. Neither LTG (10-20 mg/kg), PHN (20-40 mg/kg) or CBZ (10-20 mg/kg) had an effect on the basal extracellular concentrations of any of the amino acids studied with the exception of glutamate, which was decreased at the highest LTG dose. However, when amino acid transmitter levels were increased with 50 microM veratridine, LTG was found to cause a dose-dependent decrease in dialysate levels of all four amino acids, with the effect being most pronounced for glutamate. In contrast, PHN decreased extracellular aspartate levels but had no effect on evoked-extracellular GLU, TAU or GABA. Somewhat unexpectedly, CBZ did not alter the stimulated increase in the excitatory amino acids, GLU and ASP, but, rather surprisingly for an antiepileptic drug, markedly decreased that of the inhibitory substances TAU and GABA. The three drugs had differing effects on basal extracellular 5-HT and DA. LTG caused a dose-dependent decrease in both, while CBZ and PHN both increased extracellular 5-HT and DA. When extracellular 5-HT and DA was evoked by veratridine LTG had no significant effect on this, while PHN but not CBZ increased stimulated extracellular 5-HT and both PHN and CBZ augmented DA. Thus, the effects of the three drugs studied seemed to depend on whether extracellular transmitter levels are evoked or basal and the particular transmitter in question. This suggests that there are marked differences in the neurochemical mechanisms of antiepileptic drug action of the three compounds studied.

  18. Extracellular Matrix and Liver Disease

    PubMed Central

    Arriazu, Elena; Ruiz de Galarreta, Marina; Cubero, Francisco Javier; Varela-Rey, Marta; Pérez de Obanos, María Pilar; Leung, Tung Ming; Lopategi, Aritz; Benedicto, Aitor; Abraham-Enachescu, Ioana

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Significance: The extracellular matrix (ECM) is a dynamic microenvironment that undergoes continuous remodeling, particularly during injury and wound healing. Chronic liver injury of many different etiologies such as viral hepatitis, alcohol abuse, drug-induced liver injury, obesity and insulin resistance, metabolic disorders, and autoimmune disease is characterized by excessive deposition of ECM proteins in response to persistent liver damage. Critical Issues: This review describes the main collagenous and noncollagenous components from the ECM that play a significant role in pathological matrix deposition during liver disease. We define how increased myofibroblasts (MF) from different origins are at the forefront of liver fibrosis and how liver cell-specific regulation of the complex scarring process occurs. Recent Advances: Particular attention is paid to the role of cytokines, growth factors, reactive oxygen species, and newly identified matricellular proteins in the regulation of fibrillar type I collagen, a field to which our laboratory has significantly contributed over the years. We compile data from recent literature on the potential mechanisms driving fibrosis resolution such as MF’ apoptosis, senescence, and reversal to quiescence. Future Directions: We conclude with a brief description of how epigenetics, an evolving field, can regulate the behavior of MF and of how new “omics” tools may advance our understanding of the mechanisms by which the fibrogenic response to liver injury occurs. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 21, 1078–1097. PMID:24219114

  19. Extracellular Control of Limb Regeneration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calve, S.; Simon, H.-G.

    Adult newts possess the ability to completely regenerate organs and appendages. Immediately after limb loss, the extracellular matrix (ECM) undergoes dramatic changes that may provide mechanical and biochemical cues to guide the formation of the blastema, which is comprised of uncommitted stem-like cells that proliferate to replace the lost structure. Skeletal muscle is a known reservoir for blastema cells but the mechanism by which it contributes progenitor cells is still unclear. To create physiologically relevant culture conditions for the testing of primary newt muscle cells in vitro, the spatio-temporal distribution of ECM components and the mechanical properties of newt muscle were analyzed. Tenascin-C and hyaluronic acid (HA) were found to be dramatically upregulated in the amputated limb and were co-expressed around regenerating skeletal muscle. The transverse stiffness of muscle measured in situ was used as a guide to generate silicone-based substrates of physiological stiffness. Culturing newt muscle cells under different conditions revealed that the cells are sensitive to both matrix coating and substrate stiffness: Myoblasts on HA-coated soft substrates display a rounded morphology and become more elongated as the stiffness of the substrate increases. Coating of soft substrates with matrigel or fibronectin enhanced cell spreading and eventual cell fusion.

  20. Extracellular vesicles in parasitic diseases

    PubMed Central

    Marcilla, Antonio; Martin-Jaular, Lorena; Trelis, Maria; de Menezes-Neto, Armando; Osuna, Antonio; Bernal, Dolores; Fernandez-Becerra, Carmen; Almeida, Igor C.; del Portillo, Hernando A.

    2014-01-01

    Parasitic diseases affect billions of people and are considered a major public health issue. Close to 400 species are estimated to parasitize humans, of which around 90 are responsible for great clinical burden and mortality rates. Unfortunately, they are largely neglected as they are mainly endemic to poor regions. Of relevance to this review, there is accumulating evidence of the release of extracellular vesicles (EVs) in parasitic diseases, acting both in parasite–parasite inter-communication as well as in parasite–host interactions. EVs participate in the dissemination of the pathogen and play a role in the regulation of the host immune systems. Production of EVs from parasites or parasitized cells has been described for a number of parasitic infections. In this review, we provide the most relevant findings of the involvement of EVs in intercellular communication, modulation of immune responses, involvement in pathology, and their potential as new diagnostic tools and therapeutic agents in some of the major human parasitic pathogens. PMID:25536932

  1. Phonation in Tonal Contrasts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuang, Jianjing

    2013-01-01

    Phonation is used in many tonal languages, but how it should be incorporated into tonal systems is not well understood. The purpose of this dissertation thus is to examine the role of phonation in tonal contrasts, and to investigate how phonation and pitch interact in the tonal space. This dissertation presents close studies of tonal contrasts…

  2. Simultaneous blur contrast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webster, Shernaaz M.; Webster, Michael A.; Taylor, John; Jaikumar, Jaikishan; Verma, Richa

    2001-06-01

    How well-focused an image appears can be strongly influenced by the surroundings context. A blurred surround can cause a central image to appear too sharp, while sharped surrounds can induce blur. We examined some spatial properties and stimulus selectivities of this 'simultaneous blur contrast.' Observers adjusted the focus of a central test image by a 2AFC staircase procedure that varied the slope of the image amplitude spectrum. The test were surrounded by 8 identical images with biased spectra, that were presented concurrently with the test for 0.5 sec on a uniform gray background. Contrast effects were comparable in magnitude for image sizes ranging from 1-deg to 4-deg in visual angle, but were stronger for test that were viwe4 in the periphery rather than fixated directly. Consistent biases were found for different types of grayscale images, including natural images, filtered noise, and simple edges. However, effects were weaker when surrounds and tests were drawn from different images, or differed in contrast-polarity or color, and thus do not depend on blur or on average spatial- frequency content per se. These induction effects may in part reflect a manifestation of selective contrast gain control

  3. Contrasting Views on Censorship.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riel, Arthur R., Jr.

    This paper asserts that public demands for book censorship are but one aspect of a deep public dissatisfaction with the educational establishment, and develops the thesis that the cause of this dissatisfaction is the contrast in world views and religions of those in the educational establishment and the censors. The educational establishment…

  4. Regulation of innate immunity by extracellular nucleotides

    PubMed Central

    Gorini, Stefania; Gatta, Lucia; Pontecorvo, Laura; Vitiello, Laura; la Sala, Andrea

    2013-01-01

    Extracellular ATP (eATP) is the most abundant among extracellular nucleotides and is commonly considered as a classical danger signal, which stimulates immune responses in the presence of tissue injury. In fact, increased nucleotide concentration in the extracellular space is generally closely associated with tissue stress or damage. However non-lytic nucleotide release may also occur in many cell types under a variety of conditions. Extracellular nucleotides are sensed by a class of plasma membrane receptors called P2 purinergic receptors (P2Rs). P2 receptors are expressed by all immunological cells and their activation elicits different responses. Extracellular ATP can act as an initiator or terminator of immune responses being able to induce different effects on immune cells depending on the pattern of P2 receptors engaged, the duration of the stimulus and its concentration in the extracellular milieu. Millimolar (high) concentrations of extracellular ATP, induce predominantly proinflammatory effects, while micromolar (low) doses exert mainly tolerogenic/immunosuppressive action. Moreover small, but significant differences in the pattern of P2 receptor expression in mice and humans confer diverse capacities of ATP in regulating the immune response. PMID:23358447

  5. Extracellular vesicles in coronary artery disease.

    PubMed

    Boulanger, Chantal M; Loyer, Xavier; Rautou, Pierre-Emmanuel; Amabile, Nicolas

    2017-02-02

    Membrane vesicles released in the extracellular space are composed of a lipid bilayer enclosing soluble cytosolic material and nuclear components. Extracellular vesicles include apoptotic bodies, exosomes, and microvesicles (also known previously as microparticles). Originating from different subcellular compartments, the role of extracellular vesicles as regulators of transfer of biological information, acting locally and remotely, is now acknowledged. Circulating vesicles released from platelets, erythrocytes, leukocytes, and endothelial cells contain potential valuable biological information for biomarker discovery in primary and secondary prevention of coronary artery disease. Extracellular vesicles also accumulate in human atherosclerotic plaques, where they affect major biological pathways, including inflammation, proliferation, thrombosis, calcification, and vasoactive responses. Extracellular vesicles also recapitulate the beneficial effect of stem cells to treat cardiac consequences of acute myocardial infarction, and now emerge as an attractive alternative to cell therapy, opening new avenues to vectorize biological information to target tissues. Although interest in microvesicles in the cardiovascular field emerged about 2 decades ago, that for extracellular vesicles, in particular exosomes, started to unfold a decade ago, opening new research and therapeutic avenues. This Review summarizes current knowledge on the role of extracellular vesicles in coronary artery disease, and their emerging potential as biomarkers and therapeutic agents.

  6. Proteomics of extracellular vesicles: Exosomes and ectosomes.

    PubMed

    Choi, Dong-Sic; Kim, Dae-Kyum; Kim, Yoon-Keun; Gho, Yong Song

    2015-01-01

    Almost all bacteria, archaea, and eukaryotic cells shed extracellular vesicles either constitutively or in a regulated manner. These nanosized membrane vesicles are spherical, bilayered proteolipids that harbor specific subsets of proteins, DNAs, RNAs, and lipids. Recent research has facilitated conceptual advancements in this emerging field that indicate that extracellular vesicles act as intercellular communicasomes by transferring signals to their target cell via surface ligands and delivering receptors and functional molecules. Recent progress in mass spectrometry-based proteomic analyses of mammalian extracellular vesicles derived from diverse cell types and body fluids has resulted in the identification of several thousand vesicular proteins that provide us with essential clues to the molecular mechanisms involved in vesicle cargo sorting and biogenesis. Furthermore, cell-type- or disease-specific vesicular proteins help us to understand the pathophysiological functions of extracellular vesicles and contribute to the discovery of diagnostic and therapeutic target proteins. This review focuses on the high-throughput mass spectrometry-based proteomic analyses of mammalian extracellular vesicles (i.e., exosomes and ectosomes), EVpedia (a free web-based integrated database of high-throughput data for systematic analyses of extracellular vesicles; http://evpedia.info), and the intravesicular protein-protein interaction network analyses of mammalian extracellular vesicles. The goal of this article is to encourage further studies to construct a comprehensive proteome database for extracellular vesicles that will help us to not only decode the biogenesis and cargo-sorting mechanisms during vesicle formation but also elucidate the pathophysiological roles of these complex extracellular organelles.

  7. Mitogenic properties of major extracellular proteins.

    PubMed

    Lévesque, J P; Hatzfeld, A; Hatzfeld, J

    1991-08-01

    The major plasma and extracellular matrix proteins are multifunctional molecules. Some, such as fibrinogen or C3, have one domain that binds adhesion receptors and another that specifically binds and activates a separate, mitogenic receptor. In this review, Jean-Pierre Lévesque, Antoinette Hatzfeld and Jacques Hatzfeld describe adhesion and mitogenic receptors that bind to distinct domains of the same extracellular matrix protein and discuss the possibility of common ancestral genes for cell adhesion molecules, extracellular matrix proteins, integrins, immunoglobulins, growth factors and their receptors.

  8. Heterologous production of death ligands' and death receptors' extracellular domains: structural features and efficient systems.

    PubMed

    Muraki, Michiro

    2012-08-01

    The extracellular domains of death ligands and those of death receptors are closely related to many serious human diseases through the initiation of apoptosis. Recombinant production of the extracellular domains has been investigated due to demand for a large amount of purified samples, which are a prerequisite for their biochemical characterization and constitute the fundamentals of medical applications. This review focuses on the recombinant production of extracellular domains of the major members of death ligand and death receptor families using non-mammalian expression systems with an emphasis on Fas ligand and Fas receptor. In contrast to the efficient production of the functional extracellular domains of TRAIL, TNFα and LTα by intracellular expression systems using Escherichia coli or Pichia pastoris, that of Fas ligand requires the secretory expression systems using P. pastoris or Dictyostelium discoideum, and the productivity in P. pastoris was largely dependent on tag sequence, potential N-glycosylation site and expressed protein region. On the other hand, the exploitation of insect cell systems is generally useful for the preparation of functional extracellular domains of death receptors containing many disulfide bridges in the absence of extended secondary structure, and a Bombyx mori larvae secretion system presented a superior productivity for human Fas receptor extracellular domain. Based on the results obtained so far, further efforts should be devoted to the artificial control of death ligand - death receptor interactions in order to make a contribution to medicine, represented by the development of novel biopharmaceuticals.

  9. Uptake of heavy metals to the extracellular and intracellular compartments in three species of aquatic bryophyte.

    PubMed

    Vázquez, M D; López, J; Carballeira, A

    1999-09-01

    Shoot tips of Fontinalis antipyretica, Scapania undulata, and Fissidens polyphyllus were maintained for 60 min with solutions containing 0, 1, 10, 50, 100, or 200 ppm of Cd, Co, Cu, Ni, Pb, or Zn. A sequential extraction procedure was then used to estimate the amounts of the corresponding metal, and of K and Mg, in the extracellular compartment (extraction with NiCl(2) or EDTA), the intracellular compartment (subsequent extraction with cold dilute HNO(3)), and the particulate fraction (subsequent extraction with hot concentrated HNO(3)). In most cases more metal was taken up to the extracellular compartment than to the intracellular compartment, while particulate-fraction content was negligible. The relationship between metal concentration in the water and metal content in the extracellular compartment was well modeled with a Michaelis-Menten-type equation. Results suggest that in S. undulata extracellular cation-binding sites have a high metal affinity, while in F. polyphyllus it is relatively low. However, postincubation intracellular contents were highest in the latter species. The ranking of the six metals by amounts taken up into the intracellular compartment was the same for all three bryophyte species. Uptake of heavy metals led to considerable losses of intracellular K (probably due to effects on plasma membrane properties), and of extracellular Mg (probably due to displacement from cation-binding sites). Losses of intracellular K were most marked in S. undulata, followed by F. antipyretica. By contrast, S. undulata was the species from which losses of extracellular Mg were lowest.

  10. Chromatography: concepts and contrasts

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, J.M.

    1988-01-01

    As the author states in the Preface, this text attempts to provide a unified approach to chromatography (hence the title) by way of contrasting similarities and differences between gas chromatography (GC), column liquid chromatography (LC), and thin-layer chromatography (TLC). This book is also said to be pitched at an elementary level, suitable for most newcomers to the field (e.g., advanced undergraduates and beginning graduate students in the academic world, as well as bench-level chemists in industry).

  11. Polychromatic diffraction contrast tomography

    SciTech Connect

    King, A.; Reischig, P.; Adrien, J.; Peetermans, S.; Ludwig, W.

    2014-11-15

    This tutorial review introduces the use of polychromatic radiation for 3D grain mapping using X-ray diffraction contrast tomography. The objective is to produce a 3D map of the grain shapes and orientations within a bulk, millimeter-sized polycrystalline sample. The use of polychromatic radiation enables the standard synchrotron X-ray technique to be applied in a wider range of contexts: 1) Using laboratory X-ray sources allows a much wider application of the diffraction contrast tomography technique. 2) Neutron sources allow large samples, or samples containing high Z elements to be studied. 3) Applied to synchrotron sources, smaller samples may be treated, or faster measurements may be possible. Challenges and particularities in the data acquisition and processing, and the limitations of the different variants, are discussed. - Highlights: • We present a tutorial review of polychromatic diffraction contrast tomography techniques. • The use of polychromatic radiation allows the standard synchrotron DCT technique to be extended to a range of other sources. • The characteristics and limitations of all variants of the techniques are derived, discussed and compared. • Examples using laboratory X-ray and cold neutron radiation are presented. • Suggestions for the future development of these techniques are presented.

  12. Anisotropic contrast optical microscope.

    PubMed

    Peev, D; Hofmann, T; Kananizadeh, N; Beeram, S; Rodriguez, E; Wimer, S; Rodenhausen, K B; Herzinger, C M; Kasputis, T; Pfaunmiller, E; Nguyen, A; Korlacki, R; Pannier, A; Li, Y; Schubert, E; Hage, D; Schubert, M

    2016-11-01

    An optical microscope is described that reveals contrast in the Mueller matrix images of a thin, transparent, or semi-transparent specimen located within an anisotropic object plane (anisotropic filter). The specimen changes the anisotropy of the filter and thereby produces contrast within the Mueller matrix images. Here we use an anisotropic filter composed of a semi-transparent, nanostructured thin film with sub-wavelength thickness placed within the object plane. The sample is illuminated as in common optical microscopy but the light is modulated in its polarization using combinations of linear polarizers and phase plate (compensator) to control and analyze the state of polarization. Direct generalized ellipsometry data analysis approaches permit extraction of fundamental Mueller matrix object plane images dispensing with the need of Fourier expansion methods. Generalized ellipsometry model approaches are used for quantitative image analyses. These images are obtained from sets of multiple images obtained under various polarizer, analyzer, and compensator settings. Up to 16 independent Mueller matrix images can be obtained, while our current setup is limited to 11 images normalized by the unpolarized intensity. We demonstrate the anisotropic contrast optical microscope by measuring lithographically defined micro-patterned anisotropic filters, and we quantify the adsorption of an organic self-assembled monolayer film onto the anisotropic filter. Comparison with an isotropic glass slide demonstrates the image enhancement obtained by our method over microscopy without the use of an anisotropic filter. In our current instrument, we estimate the limit of detection for organic volumetric mass within the object plane of ≈49 fg within ≈7 × 7 μm(2) object surface area. Compared to a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation instrumentation, where contemporary limits require a total load of ≈500 pg for detection, the instrumentation demonstrated here improves

  13. Anisotropic contrast optical microscope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peev, D.; Hofmann, T.; Kananizadeh, N.; Beeram, S.; Rodriguez, E.; Wimer, S.; Rodenhausen, K. B.; Herzinger, C. M.; Kasputis, T.; Pfaunmiller, E.; Nguyen, A.; Korlacki, R.; Pannier, A.; Li, Y.; Schubert, E.; Hage, D.; Schubert, M.

    2016-11-01

    An optical microscope is described that reveals contrast in the Mueller matrix images of a thin, transparent, or semi-transparent specimen located within an anisotropic object plane (anisotropic filter). The specimen changes the anisotropy of the filter and thereby produces contrast within the Mueller matrix images. Here we use an anisotropic filter composed of a semi-transparent, nanostructured thin film with sub-wavelength thickness placed within the object plane. The sample is illuminated as in common optical microscopy but the light is modulated in its polarization using combinations of linear polarizers and phase plate (compensator) to control and analyze the state of polarization. Direct generalized ellipsometry data analysis approaches permit extraction of fundamental Mueller matrix object plane images dispensing with the need of Fourier expansion methods. Generalized ellipsometry model approaches are used for quantitative image analyses. These images are obtained from sets of multiple images obtained under various polarizer, analyzer, and compensator settings. Up to 16 independent Mueller matrix images can be obtained, while our current setup is limited to 11 images normalized by the unpolarized intensity. We demonstrate the anisotropic contrast optical microscope by measuring lithographically defined micro-patterned anisotropic filters, and we quantify the adsorption of an organic self-assembled monolayer film onto the anisotropic filter. Comparison with an isotropic glass slide demonstrates the image enhancement obtained by our method over microscopy without the use of an anisotropic filter. In our current instrument, we estimate the limit of detection for organic volumetric mass within the object plane of ≈49 fg within ≈7 × 7 μm2 object surface area. Compared to a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation instrumentation, where contemporary limits require a total load of ≈500 pg for detection, the instrumentation demonstrated here improves

  14. Extracellular matrix proteins of dentine.

    PubMed

    Butler, W T; Ritchie, H H; Bronckers, A L

    1997-01-01

    Bone and dentine extracellular matrix proteins are similar, consisting primarily of type I collagen, acidic proteins and proteoglycans. Although collagen forms the lattice for deposition of calcium and phosphate for formation of carbonate apatite, the non-collagenous proteins are believed to control initiation and growth of the crystals. Despite this similarity, dentine contains three unique proteins apparently absent from bone and other tissue: dentine phosphophoryn (DPP), dentine matrix protein 1 (DMP1) and dentine sialoprotein (DSP). DPP and DMP1 are acidic phosphoproteins probably involved in the control of mineralization processes. DPP may localize in gap regions of collagen and initiate apatite crystal formation by binding large quantities of calcium in a conformation that promotes this process. Extensive studies have been conducted in our laboratory on the nature, biosynthesis, localization and gene structure of DSP. Immunolocalization studies showed that rat DSP, a 53 kDa sialic acid-rich glycoprotein, was synthesized by young and mature odontoblasts, and by dental pulp cells and pre-ameloblasts, but not by ameloblasts, osteoblasts, chondrocytes or other cell types. The cDNA sequence indicated that DSP was a 366-residue protein with several potential N-glycosylation sites, as well as phosphorylation sites, but that the amino acid sequence was dissimilar to that of other known proteins. Northern blot analysis detected several mRNA species near 4.6 and 1.5 kb, indicative of alternative splicing events. Evidence for two DSP genes was obtained, further complicating this picture. Recent in situ hybridization studies utilizing rat and mouse molars and incisors indicated that DSP mRNA was expressed by young odontoblasts and odontoblasts in animals of all ages. Transcripts were also observed in pre-ameloblasts. The expression of DSP mRNA ceased when these cells matured to become secretory ameloblasts. DSP transcripts were not detected in osteoblasts or other cell

  15. The extracellular RNA complement of Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Ghosal, Anubrata; Upadhyaya, Bimal Babu; Fritz, Joëlle V; Heintz-Buschart, Anna; Desai, Mahesh S; Yusuf, Dilmurat; Huang, David; Baumuratov, Aidos; Wang, Kai; Galas, David; Wilmes, Paul

    2015-01-01

    The secretion of biomolecules into the extracellular milieu is a common and well-conserved phenomenon in biology. In bacteria, secreted biomolecules are not only involved in intra-species communication but they also play roles in inter-kingdom exchanges and pathogenicity. To date, released products, such as small molecules, DNA, peptides, and proteins, have been well studied in bacteria. However, the bacterial extracellular RNA complement has so far not been comprehensively characterized. Here, we have analyzed, using a combination of physical characterization and high-throughput sequencing, the extracellular RNA complement of both outer membrane vesicle (OMV)-associated and OMV-free RNA of the enteric Gram-negative model bacterium Escherichia coli K-12 substrain MG1655 and have compared it to its intracellular RNA complement. Our results demonstrate that a large part of the extracellular RNA complement is in the size range between 15 and 40 nucleotides and is derived from specific intracellular RNAs. Furthermore, RNA is associated with OMVs and the relative abundances of RNA biotypes in the intracellular, OMV and OMV-free fractions are distinct. Apart from rRNA fragments, a significant portion of the extracellular RNA complement is composed of specific cleavage products of functionally important structural noncoding RNAs, including tRNAs, 4.5S RNA, 6S RNA, and tmRNA. In addition, the extracellular RNA pool includes RNA biotypes from cryptic prophages, intergenic, and coding regions, of which some are so far uncharacterised, for example, transcripts mapping to the fimA-fimL and ves-spy intergenic regions. Our study provides the first detailed characterization of the extracellular RNA complement of the enteric model bacterium E. coli. Analogous to findings in eukaryotes, our results suggest the selective export of specific RNA biotypes by E. coli, which in turn indicates a potential role for extracellular bacterial RNAs in intercellular communication. PMID:25611733

  16. High Contrast CRT.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1980-02-01

    form brown sulfides or sulfates. By con- trast, No. 1720 glass does not acquire a brown coloration . How- ever, preliminary tests with 1723 glass show...TR-77-2639-F NL -mmo mhhmhul IIII,. BwII ---- i 11111--- IIIIIN III i 8’ II.I25 .11111 I .6 MCROCOPY RESOLUTION TEST CHART NATIONAL BUREAU Of...High Contrast Displays Two- Color CRT Laminar Flow Electron Gun Thin Film Phosphor Color Penetration Tube 2% AS~iTACT (ConIlm. a" Pove.. 0fdo if

  17. Contrast and depth perception: effects of texture contrast and area contrast.

    PubMed

    Ichihara, Shigeru; Kitagawa, Norimichi; Akutsu, Hiromi

    2007-01-01

    Many objects in natural scenes have textures on their surfaces. Contrast of the texture surfaces (the texture contrast) reduces when the viewing distance increases. Similarly, contrast between the surfaces of the objects and the background (the area contrast) reduces when the viewing distance increases. The texture contrast and the area contrast were defined by the contrast between random dots, and by the contrast between the average luminance of the dot pattern and the luminance of the background, respectively. To examine how these two types of contrast influence depth perception, we ran two experiments. In both experiments two areas of random-dot patterns were presented against a uniform background, and participants rated relative depth between the two areas. We found that the rated depth of the patterned areas increased with increases in texture contrast. Furthermore, the effect of the texture contrast on depth judgment increased when the area contrast became low.

  18. On Establishing Underlying Tonal Contrast

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Snider, Keith

    2014-01-01

    Phonological field work is largely about establishing contrast in comparable environments. The notion of phonological contrast, however, can be confusing, particularly in its application to tone analysis. Does it mean phonemic contrast in the structuralist sense, or does it mean underlying contrast in the generative sense? Many linguists, in…

  19. Contrasting Martian Terrains

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit captured this interesting view of martian topography just below the 'West Spur' portion of the 'Columbia Hills' on sol 208 (Aug. 2, 2004). The view is looking southwest. The rover's wheel tracks show the contrast between soft martian soil and the harder 'Clovis' rock outcrop, which scientists are now studying.

    The angle of the horizon indicates the tilt of the rover to be about 20 degrees. On the horizon is a small peak informally named 'Grissom Hill,' about 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) away. To the right of the peak is the edge of a 2-kilometer-wide (1.2-mile-wide) crater. A few weeks ago, Spirit stopped to conduct scientific studies of rocks in 'Hank's Hollow,' located on the right side of the image approximately one-third of the way down from the top. This photo was taken with Spirit's right rear hazard-avoidance camera.

  20. Vertebrate extracellular preovulatory and postovulatory egg coats.

    PubMed

    Menkhorst, Ellen; Selwood, Lynne

    2008-11-01

    Extracellular egg coats deposited by maternal or embryonic tissues surround all vertebrate conceptuses during early development. In oviparous species, the time of hatching from extracellular coats can be considered equivalent to the time of birth in viviparous species. Extracellular coats must be lost during gestation for implantation and placentation to occur in some viviparous species. In the most recent classification of vertebrate extracellular coats, Boyd and Hamilton (Cleavage, early development and implantation of the egg. In: Parkes AS (ed.), Marshall's Physiology of Reproduction, vol. 2, 3rd ed. London: Longmans, Green & Co; 1961:1-126) defined the coat synthesized by the oocyte during oogenesis as primary and the coat deposited by follicle cells surrounding the oocyte as secondary. Tertiary egg coats are those synthesized and deposited around the primary or secondary coat by the maternal reproductive tract. This classification is difficult to reconcile with recent data collected using modern molecular biological techniques that can accurately establish the site of coat precursor synthesis and secretion. We propose that a modification to the classification by Boyd and Hamilton is required. Vertebrate egg coats should be classed as belonging to the following two broad groups: the preovulatory coat, which is deposited during oogenesis by the oocyte or follicle cells, and the postovulatory coats, which are deposited after fertilization by the reproductive tract or conceptus. This review discusses the origin and classification of vertebrate extracellular preovulatory and postovulatory coats and illustrates what is known about coat homology between the vertebrate groups.

  1. Extracellular purines, purinergic receptors and tumor growth

    PubMed Central

    Di Virgilio, F; Adinolfi, E

    2017-01-01

    Virtually, all tumor cells as well as all immune cells express plasma membrane receptors for extracellular nucleosides (adenosine) and nucleotides (ATP, ADP, UTP, UDP and sugar UDP). The tumor microenvironment is characterized by an unusually high concentration of ATP and adenosine. Adenosine is a major determinant of the immunosuppressive tumor milieu. Sequential hydrolysis of extracellular ATP catalyzed by CD39 and CD73 is the main pathway for the generation of adenosine in the tumor interstitium. Extracellular ATP and adenosine mold both host and tumor responses. Depending on the specific receptor activated, extracellular purines mediate immunosuppression or immunostimulation on the host side, and growth stimulation or cytotoxicity on the tumor side. Recent progress in this field is providing the key to decode this complex scenario and to lay the basis to harness the potential benefits for therapy. Preclinical data show that targeting the adenosine-generating pathway (that is, CD73) or adenosinergic receptors (that is, A2A) relieves immunosuppresion and potently inhibits tumor growth. On the other hand, growth of experimental tumors is strongly inhibited by targeting the P2X7 ATP-selective receptor of cancer and immune cells. This review summarizes the recent data on the role played by extracellular purines (purinergic signaling) in host–tumor interaction and highlights novel therapeutic options stemming from recent advances in this field. PMID:27321181

  2. Extracellular histones in tissue injury and inflammation.

    PubMed

    Allam, Ramanjaneyulu; Kumar, Santhosh V R; Darisipudi, Murthy N; Anders, Hans-Joachim

    2014-05-01

    Neutrophil NETosis is an important element of host defense as it catapults chromatin out of the cell to trap bacteria, which then are killed, e.g., by the chromatin's histone component. Also, during sterile inflammation TNF-alpha and other mediators trigger NETosis, which elicits cytotoxic effects on host cells. The same mechanism should apply to other forms of regulated necrosis including pyroptosis, necroptosis, ferroptosis, and cyclophilin D-mediated regulated necrosis. Beyond these toxic effects, extracellular histones also trigger thrombus formation and innate immunity by activating Toll-like receptors and the NLRP3 inflammasome. Thereby, extracellular histones contribute to the microvascular complications of sepsis, major trauma, small vessel vasculitis as well as acute liver, kidney, brain, and lung injury. Finally, histones prevent the degradation of extracellular DNA, which promotes autoimmunization, anti-nuclear antibody formation, and autoimmunity in susceptible individuals. Here, we review the current evidence on the pathogenic role of extracellular histones in disease and discuss how to target extracellular histones to improve disease outcomes.

  3. The complex extracellular biology of Streptomyces.

    PubMed

    Chater, Keith F; Biró, Sandor; Lee, Kye Joon; Palmer, Tracy; Schrempf, Hildgund

    2010-03-01

    Streptomycetes, soil-dwelling mycelial bacteria that form sporulating aerial branches, have an exceptionally large number of predicted secreted proteins, including many exported via the twin-arginine transport system. Their use of noncatalytic substrate-binding proteins and hydrolytic enzymes to obtain soluble nutrients from carbohydrates such as chitin and cellulose enables them to interact with other organisms. Some of their numerous secreted proteases participate in developmentally significant extracellular cascades, regulated by inhibitors, which lead to cannibalization of the substrate mycelium biomass to support aerial growth and sporulation. They excrete many secondary metabolites, including important antibiotics. Some of these play roles in interactions with eukaryotes. Surprisingly, some antibiotic biosynthetic enzymes are extracellular. Antibiotic production is often regulated by extracellular signalling molecules, some of which also control morphological differentiation. Amphipathic proteins, assembled with the help of cellulose-like material, are required for both hyphal attachment to surfaces and aerial reproductive growth. Comparative genomic analysis suggests that the acquisition of genes for extracellular processes has played a huge part in speciation. The rare codon TTA, which is present in the key pleiotropic regulatory gene adpA and many pathway-specific regulatory genes for antibiotic production, has a particular influence on extracellular biology.

  4. Extracellular nucleotide and nucleoside signaling in vascular and blood disease

    PubMed Central

    Idzko, Marco; Ferrari, Davide; Riegel, Ann-Kathrin

    2014-01-01

    Nucleotides and nucleosides—such as adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and adenosine—are famous for their intracellular roles as building blocks for the genetic code or cellular energy currencies. In contrast, their function in the extracellular space is different. Here, they are primarily known as signaling molecules via activation of purinergic receptors, classified as P1 receptors for adenosine or P2 receptors for ATP. Because extracellular ATP is rapidly converted to adenosine by ectonucleotidase, nucleotide-phosphohydrolysis is important for controlling the balance between P2 and P1 signaling. Gene-targeted mice for P1, P2 receptors, or ectonucleotidase exhibit only very mild phenotypic manifestations at baseline. However, they demonstrate alterations in disease susceptibilities when exposed to a variety of vascular or blood diseases. Examples of phenotypic manifestations include vascular barrier dysfunction, graft-vs-host disease, platelet activation, ischemia, and reperfusion injury or sickle cell disease. Many of these studies highlight that purinergic signaling events can be targeted therapeutically. PMID:25001468

  5. Extracellular cleavage of E-cadherin promotes epithelial cell extrusion.

    PubMed

    Grieve, Adam G; Rabouille, Catherine

    2014-08-01

    Epithelial cell extrusion and subsequent apoptosis is a key mechanism to prevent the accumulation of excess cells. By contrast, when driven by oncogene expression, apical cell extrusion is followed by proliferation and represents an initial step of tumorigenesis. E-cadherin (E-cad), the main component of adherens junctions, has been shown to be essential for epithelial cell extrusion, but its mechanistic contribution remains unclear. Here, we provide clear evidence that cell extrusion can be driven by the cleavage of E-cad, both in a wild-type and an oncogenic environment. We first show that CDC42 activation in a single epithelial cell results in its efficient matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-sensitive extrusion through MEK signalling activation and this is supported by E-cad cleavage. Second, using an engineered cleavable form of E-cad, we demonstrate that, by itself, truncation of extracellular E-cad at the plasma membrane promotes apical extrusion. We propose that extracellular cleavage of E-cad generates a rapid change in cell-cell adhesion that is sufficient to drive apical cell extrusion. Whereas in normal epithelia, extrusion is followed by apoptosis, when combined with active oncogenic signalling, it is coupled to cell proliferation.

  6. Extracellular miRNA: A Collision of Two Paradigms.

    PubMed

    Turchinovich, Andrey; Tonevitsky, Alexander G; Burwinkel, Barbara

    2016-10-01

    Since their discovery in 2008, extracellular miRNAs (ex-miRNAs) have persisted as one of the major themes of molecular and cellular biology. The main reason for this remarkable interest is the increasing number of research papers reporting that cell-free circulating miRNA mediates both short-range and distant communication between various cells, and could impact on diverse physiological and pathological processes. However, there are also multiple conflicting lines of evidence that challenge the biological significance of circulating ex-miRNA, suggesting that they are merely byproducts of cell activity and cell death without any particular function. This review aims to summarize these contrasting opinions and to foster further experimental validation of both paradigms.

  7. Using extracellular action potential recordings to constrain compartmental models.

    PubMed

    Gold, Carl; Henze, Darrell A; Koch, Christof

    2007-08-01

    We investigate the use of extracellular action potential (EAP) recordings for biophysically faithful compartmental models. We ask whether constraining a model to fit the EAP is superior to matching the intracellular action potential (IAP). In agreement with previous studies, we find that the IAP method under-constrains the parameters. As a result, significantly different sets of parameters can have virtually identical IAP's. In contrast, the EAP method results in a much tighter constraint. We find that the distinguishing characteristics of the waveform--but not its amplitude-resulting from the distribution of active conductances are fairly invariant to changes of electrode position and detailed cellular morphology. Based on these results, we conclude that EAP recordings are an excellent source of data for the purpose of constraining compartmental models.

  8. Extracellular enzyme kinetics scale with resource availability

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sinsabaugh, Robert L.; Belnap, Jayne; Findlay, Stuart G.; Follstad Shah, Jennifer J.; Hill, Brian H.; Kuehn, Kevin A.; Kuske, Cheryl; Litvak, Marcy E.; Martinez, Noelle G.; Moorhead, Daryl L.; Warnock, Daniel D.

    2014-01-01

    Microbial community metabolism relies on external digestion, mediated by extracellular enzymes that break down complex organic matter into molecules small enough for cells to assimilate. We analyzed the kinetics of 40 extracellular enzymes that mediate the degradation and assimilation of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus by diverse aquatic and terrestrial microbial communities (1160 cases). Regression analyses were conducted by habitat (aquatic and terrestrial), enzyme class (hydrolases and oxidoreductases) and assay methodology (low affinity and high affinity substrates) to relate potential reaction rates to substrate availability. Across enzyme classes and habitats, the scaling relationships between apparent Vmax and apparent Km followed similar power laws with exponents of 0.44 to 0.67. These exponents, called elasticities, were not statistically distinct from a central value of 0.50, which occurs when the Km of an enzyme equals substrate concentration, a condition optimal for maintenance of steady state. We also conducted an ecosystem scale analysis of ten extracellular hydrolase activities in relation to soil and sediment organic carbon (2,000–5,000 cases/enzyme) that yielded elasticities near 1.0 (0.9 ± 0.2, n = 36). At the metabolomic scale, the elasticity of extracellular enzymatic reactions is the proportionality constant that connects the C:N:P stoichiometries of organic matter and ecoenzymatic activities. At the ecosystem scale, the elasticity of extracellular enzymatic reactions shows that organic matter ultimately limits effective enzyme binding sites. Our findings suggest that one mechanism by which microbial communities maintain homeostasis is regulating extracellular enzyme expression to optimize the short-term responsiveness of substrate acquisition. The analyses also show that, like elemental stoichiometry, the fundamental attributes of enzymatic reactions can be extrapolated from biochemical to community and ecosystem scales.

  9. Extracellular vesicles: Exosomes, microvesicles, and friends

    PubMed Central

    Stoorvogel, Willem

    2013-01-01

    Cells release into the extracellular environment diverse types of membrane vesicles of endosomal and plasma membrane origin called exosomes and microvesicles, respectively. These extracellular vesicles (EVs) represent an important mode of intercellular communication by serving as vehicles for transfer between cells of membrane and cytosolic proteins, lipids, and RNA. Deficiencies in our knowledge of the molecular mechanisms for EV formation and lack of methods to interfere with the packaging of cargo or with vesicle release, however, still hamper identification of their physiological relevance in vivo. In this review, we focus on the characterization of EVs and on currently proposed mechanisms for their formation, targeting, and function. PMID:23420871

  10. Different danger signals differently impact on microglial proliferation through alterations of ATP release and extracellular metabolism.

    PubMed

    George, Jimmy; Gonçalves, Francisco Q; Cristóvão, Gonçalo; Rodrigues, Lisa; Meyer Fernandes, José Roberto; Gonçalves, Teresa; Cunha, Rodrigo A; Gomes, Catarina A

    2015-09-01

    Microglia rely on their ability to proliferate in the brain parenchyma to sustain brain innate immunity and participate in the reaction to brain damage. We now studied the influence of different danger signals activating microglia, both internal (typified by glutamate, associated with brain damage) and external (using a bacterial lipopolysaccharide, LPS), on the proliferation of microglia cells. We found that LPS (100 ng/mL) increased, whereas glutamate (0.5 mM) decreased proliferation. Notably, LPS decreased whereas glutamate increased the extracellular levels of ATP. In contrast, LPS increased whereas glutamate decreased the extracellular catabolism of ATP into adenosine through ecto-nucleotidases and ecto-5'-nucleotidase. Finally, apyrase (degrades extracellular ATP) abrogated glutamate-induced inhibition of microglia proliferation; conversely, inhibitors of ecto-nucleotidases (ARL67156 or α,β-methylene ADP) and adenosine deaminase (degrades extracellular adenosine) abrogated the LPS-induced increase of microglia proliferation, which was blocked by a selective A2A receptor antagonist, SCH58261 (50 nM). Overall, these results highlight the importance of the extracellular purinergic metabolism to format microglia proliferation and influence the spatio-temporal profile of neuroinflammation in different conditions of brain damage.

  11. Leishmania donovani promastigotes evade the antimicrobial activity of neutrophil extracellular traps.

    PubMed

    Gabriel, Christelle; McMaster, W Robert; Girard, Denis; Descoteaux, Albert

    2010-10-01

    Upon their recruitment to a site of infection and their subsequent activation, neutrophils release DNA and a subset of their granule content to form filamentous structures, known as neutrophil extracellular traps, which capture and kill microorganisms. In this study, we show that Leishmania promastigotes induced the rapid release of neutrophil extracellular traps from human neutrophils and were trapped by these structures. The use of Leishmania mutants defective in the biosynthesis of either lipophosphoglycan or GP63 revealed that these two major surface promastigote virulence determinants were not responsible for inducing the release of the surface protease neutrophil extracellular traps. We also demonstrate that this induction was independent of superoxide production by neutrophils. Finally, in contrast to wild-type Leishmania donovani promastigotes, mutants defective in lipophosphoglycan biosynthesis were highly susceptible to the antimicrobial activity of neutrophil extracellular traps. Altogether, our data suggest that neutrophil extracellular traps may contribute to the containment of L. donovani promastigotes at the site of inoculation, thereby facilitating their uptake by mononuclear phagocytes.

  12. Influence of AMPA/kainate receptors on extracellular 5-hydroxytryptamine in rat midbrain raphe and forebrain

    PubMed Central

    Tao, Rui; Ma, Zhiyuan; Auerbach, Sidney B

    1997-01-01

    The regulation of 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) release by excitatory amino acid (EAA) receptors was examined by use of microdialysis in the CNS of freely behaving rats. Extracellular 5-HT was measured in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN), median raphe nucleus (MRN), nucleus accumbens, hypothalamus, frontal cortex, dorsal and ventral hippocampus. Local infusion of kainate produced increases in extracellular 5-HT in the DRN and MRN. Kainate infusion into forebrain sites had a less potent effect. In further studies of the DRN and nucleus accumbens, kainate-induced increases in extracellular 5-HT were blocked by the EAA receptor antagonists, kynurenate and 6,7-dinitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (DNQX). The effect of infusing kainate into the DRN or nucleus accumbens was attenuated or abolished by tetrodotoxin (TTX), suggesting that the increase in extracellular 5-HT is dependent on 5-HT neuronal activity. In contrast, ibotenate-induced lesion of intrinsic neurones did not attenuate the effect of infusing kainate into the nucleus accumbens. Thus, the effect of kainate in the nucleus accumbens does not depend on intrinsic neurones. Infusion of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolaproprionate (AMPA) into the DRN and nucleus accumbens induced nonsignificant changes in extracellular 5-HT. Cyclothiazide and diazoxide, which attenuate receptor desensitization, greatly enhanced the effect of AMPA on 5-HT in the DRN, but not in the nucleus accumbens. In conclusion, AMPA/kainate receptors regulate 5-HT in the raphe and in forebrain sites. PMID:9283707

  13. Contrast agents for MRI.

    PubMed

    Shokrollahi, H

    2013-12-01

    Contrast agents are divided into two categories. The first one is paramagnetic compounds, including lanthanides like gadolinium, which mainly reduce the longitudinal (T1) relaxation property and result in a brighter signal. The second class consists of super-paramagnetic magnetic nanoparticles (SPMNPs) such as iron oxides, which have a strong effect on the transversal (T2) relaxation properties. SPMNPs have the potential to be utilized as excellent probes for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). For instance, clinically benign iron oxide and engineered ferrite nanoparticles provide a good MRI probing capability for clinical applications. Furthermore, the limited magnetic property and inability to escape from the reticuloendothelial system (RES) of the used nanoparticles impede their further advancement. Therefore, it is necessary to develop the engineered magnetic nanoparticle probes for the next-generation molecular MRI. Considering the importance of MRI in diagnosing diseases, this paper presents an overview of recent scientific achievements in the development of new synthetic SPMNP probes whereby the sensitive and target-specific observation of biological events at the molecular and cellular levels is feasible.

  14. Proteus mirabilis fimbriae- and urease-dependent clusters assemble in an extracellular niche to initiate bladder stone formation

    PubMed Central

    Schaffer, Jessica N.; Norsworthy, Allison N.; Sun, Tung-Tien

    2016-01-01

    The catheter-associated uropathogen Proteus mirabilis frequently causes urinary stones, but little has been known about the initial stages of bladder colonization and stone formation. We found that P. mirabilis rapidly invades the bladder urothelium, but generally fails to establish an intracellular niche. Instead, it forms extracellular clusters in the bladder lumen, which form foci of mineral deposition consistent with development of urinary stones. These clusters elicit a robust neutrophil response, and we present evidence of neutrophil extracellular trap generation during experimental urinary tract infection. We identified two virulence factors required for cluster development: urease, which is required for urolithiasis, and mannose-resistant Proteus-like fimbriae. The extracellular cluster formation by P. mirabilis stands in direct contrast to uropathogenic Escherichia coli, which readily formed intracellular bacterial communities but not luminal clusters or urinary stones. We propose that extracellular clusters are a key mechanism of P. mirabilis survival and virulence in the bladder. PMID:27044107

  15. Proteus mirabilis fimbriae- and urease-dependent clusters assemble in an extracellular niche to initiate bladder stone formation.

    PubMed

    Schaffer, Jessica N; Norsworthy, Allison N; Sun, Tung-Tien; Pearson, Melanie M

    2016-04-19

    The catheter-associated uropathogenProteus mirabilisfrequently causes urinary stones, but little has been known about the initial stages of bladder colonization and stone formation. We found thatP. mirabilisrapidly invades the bladder urothelium, but generally fails to establish an intracellular niche. Instead, it forms extracellular clusters in the bladder lumen, which form foci of mineral deposition consistent with development of urinary stones. These clusters elicit a robust neutrophil response, and we present evidence of neutrophil extracellular trap generation during experimental urinary tract infection. We identified two virulence factors required for cluster development: urease, which is required for urolithiasis, and mannose-resistantProteus-like fimbriae. The extracellular cluster formation byP. mirabilisstands in direct contrast to uropathogenicEscherichia coli, which readily formed intracellular bacterial communities but not luminal clusters or urinary stones. We propose that extracellular clusters are a key mechanism ofP. mirabilissurvival and virulence in the bladder.

  16. Phase Contrast Imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Menk, Ralf Hendrik

    2008-11-13

    All standard (medical) x-ray imaging technologies, rely primarily on the amplitude properties of the incident radiation, and do not depend on its phase. This is unchanged since the discovery by Roentgen that the intensity of an x-ray beam, as measured by the exposure on a film, was related to the relative transmission properties of an object. However, recently various imaging techniques have emerged which depend on the phase of the x-rays as well as the amplitude. Phase becomes important when the beam is coherent and the imaging system is sensitive to interference phenomena. Significant new advances have been made in coherent optic theory and techniques, which now promise phase information in medical imaging. The development of perfect crystal optics and the increasing availability of synchrotron radiation facilities have contributed to a significant increase in the application of phase based imaging in materials and life sciences. Unique source characteristics such as high intensity, monochromaticity, coherence and high collimating provide an ideal source for advanced imaging. Phase contrast imaging has been applied in both projection and computed tomography modes, and recent applications have been made in the field of medical imaging. Due to the underlying principle of X-ray detection conventional image receptors register only intensities of wave fields and not their phases. During the last decade basically five different methods were developed that translate the phase information into intensity variations. These methods are based on measuring the phase shift {phi} directly (using interference phenomena), the gradient {nabla}{sub {phi}}, or the Laplacian {nabla}{sup 2}{phi}. All three methods can be applied to polychromatic X-ray sources keeping in mind that the native source is synchrotron radiation, featuring monochromatic and reasonable coherent X-ray beams. Due to the vast difference in the coefficients that are driven absorption and phase effects (factor 1

  17. Recognition memory reveals just how CONTRASTIVE contrastive accenting really is

    PubMed Central

    Fraundorf, Scott H.; Watson, Duane G.; Benjamin, Aaron S.

    2010-01-01

    The effects of pitch accenting on memory were investigated in three experiments. Participants listened to short recorded discourses that contained contrast sets with two items (e.g. British scientists and French scientists); a continuation specified one item from the set. Pitch accenting on the critical word in the continuation was manipulated between non-contrastive (H* in the ToBI system) and contrastive (L+H*). On subsequent recognition memory tests, the L+H* accent increased hits to correct statements and correct rejections of the contrast item (Experiments 1–3), but did not impair memory for other parts of the discourse (Experiment 2). L+H* also did not facilitate correct rejections of lures not in the contrast set (Experiment 3), indicating that contrastive accents do not simply strengthen the representation of the target item. These results suggest comprehenders use pitch accenting to encode and update information about multiple elements in a contrast set. PMID:20835405

  18. Contrastive Analysis and Language Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferguson, Charles A.

    Contrastive analysis is basic to all linguistics since only by this approach can a general theory of language (language universals) be constructed and only with at least implicit contrastive analysis can a particular language be fully characterized. Two kinds of contrastive analysis have been basic to diachronic linguistics: the comparison of…

  19. Extracellular recombinant protein production from Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Ni, Ye; Chen, Rachel

    2009-11-01

    Escherichia coli is the most commonly used host for recombinant protein production and metabolic engineering. Extracellular production of enzymes and proteins is advantageous as it could greatly reduce the complexity of a bioprocess and improve product quality. Extracellular production of proteins is necessary for metabolic engineering applications in which substrates are polymers such as lignocelluloses or xenobiotics since adequate uptake of these substrates is often an issue. The dogma that E. coli secretes no protein has been challenged by the recognition of both its natural ability to secrete protein in common laboratory strains and increased ability to secrete proteins in engineered cells. The very existence of this review dedicated to extracellular production is a testimony for outstanding achievements made collectively by the community in this regard. Four strategies have emerged to engineer E. coli cells to secrete recombinant proteins. In some cases, impressive secretion levels, several grams per liter, were reached. This secretion level is on par with other eukaryotic expression systems. Amid the optimism, it is important to recognize that significant challenges remain, especially when considering the success cannot be predicted a priori and involves much trials and errors. This review provides an overview of recent developments in engineering E. coli for extracellular production of recombinant proteins and an analysis of pros and cons of each strategy.

  20. MR-angiography: the role of contrast agents.

    PubMed

    Goyen, M; Ruehm, S G; Debatin, J F

    2000-06-01

    Contrast-enhanced 3D MR angiography (MRA) permits comprehensive assessment of the supraaortic arteries as well as the arterial system in the chest, abdomen and lower extremities. 3D MRA combines intravenous injection of a non-nephrotoxic, paramagnetic, extracellular contrast agent that increases the signal intensity of blood by shortening its T1 value with the acquisition of a fast 3D data set. High contrast between the vascular lumen and surrounding tissues, inherent three-dimensionality and the ability to collect image data in the chest and abdomen under apnea conditions all contribute to excellent image quality. This review provides clinical applications of 3D MRA in the chest, abdomen and lower extremities based upon the available literature and several clinical examples.

  1. Endoscopy imaging intelligent contrast improvement.

    PubMed

    Sheraizin, S; Sheraizin, V

    2005-01-01

    In this paper, we present a medical endoscopy video contrast improvement method that provides intelligent automatic adaptive contrast control. The method fundamentals are video data clustering and video data histogram modification. The video data clustering allows an effective use the low noise two channel contrast enhancement processing. The histogram analysis permitted to determine the video exposure type for simple and complicated contrast distribution. We determined the needed gamma value for automatic local area contrast improvement for the following exposure types: dark, normal, light, dark light, dark normal etc. The experimental results of medical endoscopy video processing allow defining the automatic gamma control range from 0.5 to 2.0.

  2. Morphological Characterization of Organized Extracellular Matrix Deposition by Ascorbic Acid-Stimulated Human Corneal Fibroblasts

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Xiaoqing; Hutcheon, Audrey E. K.; Melotti, Suzanna A.; Zieske, James D.; Trinkaus-Randall, Vickery; Ruberti, Jeffrey W.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To characterize the structure and morphology of extracellular matrix (ECM) synthesized by untransformed, cultured human corneal fibroblasts in long-term cultures. Methods Human corneal stromal keratocytes were expanded in transwell culture in the presence of fetal bovine serum and a stable derivative of Vitamin C. The cells were allowed to synthesize a fibrillar ECM for up to five weeks. Constructs were assessed via light (phase contrast and differential interference contrast) and transmission (standard and quick freeze/deep etch) microscopy. Results Electron micrographs revealed stratified constructs with multiple parallel layers of cells and an extracellular matrix comprising parallel arrays of small, polydisperse fibrils (27–51 nm) which often alternate in direction. Differential interference contrast images demonstrated oriented ECM fibril arrays parallel to the plane of the construct while quick-freeze deep etch micrographs showed the details of the matrix interaction with fibroblasts via arrays of membrane surface structures. Conclusions Human keratocytes, cultured in a stable Vitamin C derivative, are capable of assembling extracellular matrix which comprise parallel arrays of ECM fibrils. The resulting constructs, which are highly cellular, exhibit morphology similar to the developing mammalian stroma where organized matrix is derived. The appearance of arrays of structures on the cell membranes suggest a role in the local organization of synthesized ECM. This model could provide critical insight into the fundamental processes which govern the genesis of organized connective tissues such as the cornea and may provide a scaffolding suitable for tissue-engineering a biomimetic stroma. PMID:17724187

  3. Oxidative and other posttranslational modifications in extracellular vesicle biology.

    PubMed

    Szabó-Taylor, Katalin; Ryan, Brent; Osteikoetxea, Xabier; Szabó, Tamás G; Sódar, Barbara; Holub, Marcsilla; Németh, Andrea; Pálóczi, Krisztina; Pállinger, Éva; Winyard, Paul; Buzás, Edit I

    2015-04-01

    Extracellular vesicles including exosomes, microvesicles and apoptotic vesicles, are phospholipid bilayer surrounded structures secreted by cells universally, in an evolutionarily conserved fashion. Posttranslational modifications such as oxidation, citrullination, phosphorylation and glycosylation play diverse roles in extracellular vesicle biology. Posttranslational modifications orchestrate the biogenesis of extracellular vesicles. The signals extracellular vesicles transmit between cells also often function via modulating posttranslational modifications of target molecules, given that extracellular vesicles are carriers of several active enzymes catalysing posttranslational modifications. Posttranslational modifications of extracellular vesicles can also contribute to disease pathology by e.g. amplifying inflammation, generating neoepitopes or carrying neoepitopes themselves.

  4. An intrinsic agonist mechanism for activation of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor by its extracellular domain

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Yanting; Zhou, X Edward; Hou, Li; Zhao, Li-Hua; Liu, Bo; Wang, Gaihong; Jiang, Yi; Melcher, Karsten; Xu, H Eric

    2016-01-01

    The glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor is a class B G protein coupled receptor (GPCR) that plays key roles in glucose metabolism and is a major therapeutic target for diabetes. The classic two-domain model for class B GPCR activation proposes that the apo-state receptor is auto-inhibited by its extracellular domain, which physically interacts with the transmembrane domain. The binding of the C-terminus of the peptide hormone to the extracellular domain allows the N-terminus of the hormone to insert into the transmembrane domain to induce receptor activation. In contrast to this model, here we demonstrate that glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor can be activated by N-terminally truncated glucagon-like peptide-1 or exendin-4 when fused to the receptor, raising the question regarding the role of N-terminal residues of peptide hormone in glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor activation. Mutations of cysteine 347 to lysine or arginine in intracellular loop 3 transform the receptor into a G protein-biased receptor and allow it to be activated by a nonspecific five-residue linker that is completely devoid of exendin-4 or glucagon-like peptide-1 sequence but still requires the presence of an intact extracellular domain. Moreover, the extracellular domain can activate the receptor in trans in the presence of an intact peptide hormone, and specific mutations in three extracellular loops abolished this extracellular domain trans-activation. Together, our data reveal a dominant role of the extracellular domain in glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor activation and support an intrinsic agonist model of the extracellular domain, in which peptide binding switches the receptor from the auto-inhibited state to the auto-activated state by releasing the intrinsic agonist activity of the extracellular domain. PMID:27917297

  5. An intrinsic agonist mechanism for activation of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor by its extracellular domain.

    PubMed

    Yin, Yanting; Zhou, X Edward; Hou, Li; Zhao, Li-Hua; Liu, Bo; Wang, Gaihong; Jiang, Yi; Melcher, Karsten; Xu, H Eric

    2016-01-01

    The glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor is a class B G protein coupled receptor (GPCR) that plays key roles in glucose metabolism and is a major therapeutic target for diabetes. The classic two-domain model for class B GPCR activation proposes that the apo-state receptor is auto-inhibited by its extracellular domain, which physically interacts with the transmembrane domain. The binding of the C-terminus of the peptide hormone to the extracellular domain allows the N-terminus of the hormone to insert into the transmembrane domain to induce receptor activation. In contrast to this model, here we demonstrate that glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor can be activated by N-terminally truncated glucagon-like peptide-1 or exendin-4 when fused to the receptor, raising the question regarding the role of N-terminal residues of peptide hormone in glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor activation. Mutations of cysteine 347 to lysine or arginine in intracellular loop 3 transform the receptor into a G protein-biased receptor and allow it to be activated by a nonspecific five-residue linker that is completely devoid of exendin-4 or glucagon-like peptide-1 sequence but still requires the presence of an intact extracellular domain. Moreover, the extracellular domain can activate the receptor in trans in the presence of an intact peptide hormone, and specific mutations in three extracellular loops abolished this extracellular domain trans-activation. Together, our data reveal a dominant role of the extracellular domain in glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor activation and support an intrinsic agonist model of the extracellular domain, in which peptide binding switches the receptor from the auto-inhibited state to the auto-activated state by releasing the intrinsic agonist activity of the extracellular domain.

  6. Extracellularly identifying motor neurons for a muscle motor pool in Aplysia californica.

    PubMed

    Lu, Hui; McManus, Jeffrey M; Chiel, Hillel J

    2013-03-25

    In animals with large identified neurons (e.g. mollusks), analysis of motor pools is done using intracellular techniques. Recently, we developed a technique to extracellularly stimulate and record individual neurons in Aplysia californica. We now describe a protocol for using this technique to uniquely identify and characterize motor neurons within a motor pool. This extracellular technique has advantages. First, extracellular electrodes can stimulate and record neurons through the sheath, so it does not need to be removed. Thus, neurons will be healthier in extracellular experiments than in intracellular ones. Second, if ganglia are rotated by appropriate pinning of the sheath, extracellular electrodes can access neurons on both sides of the ganglion, which makes it easier and more efficient to identify multiple neurons in the same preparation. Third, extracellular electrodes do not need to penetrate cells, and thus can be easily moved back and forth among neurons, causing less damage to them. This is especially useful when one tries to record multiple neurons during repeating motor patterns that may only persist for minutes. Fourth, extracellular electrodes are more flexible than intracellular ones during muscle movements. Intracellular electrodes may pull out and damage neurons during muscle contractions. In contrast, since extracellular electrodes are gently pressed onto the sheath above neurons, they usually stay above the same neuron during muscle contractions, and thus can be used in more intact preparations. To uniquely identify motor neurons for a motor pool (in particular, the I1/I3 muscle in Aplysia) using extracellular electrodes, one can use features that do not require intracellular measurements as criteria: soma size and location, axonal projection, and muscle innervation. For the particular motor pool used to illustrate the technique, we recorded from buccal nerves 2 and 3 to measure axonal projections, and measured the contraction forces of the I1

  7. Involvement of extracellular matrix constituents in breast cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Lochter, Andre; Bissell, Mina J

    1995-06-01

    It has recently been established that the extracellular matrix is required for normal functional differentiation of mammary epithelia not only in culture, but also in vivo. The mechanisms by which extracellular matrix affects differentiation, as well as the nature of extracellular matrix constituents which have major impacts on mammary gland function, have only now begun to be dissected. The intricate variety of extracellular matrix-mediated events and the remarkable degree of plasticity of extracellular matrix structure and composition at virtually all times during ontogeny, make such studies difficult. Similarly, during carcinogenesis, the extracellular matrix undergoes gross alterations, the consequences of which are not yet precisely understood. Nevertheless, an increasing amount of data suggests that the extracellular matrix and extracellular matrix-receptors might participate in the control of most, if not all, of the successive stages of breast tumors, from appearance to progression and metastasis.

  8. High Presence of Extracellular Hemoglobin in the Periventricular White Matter Following Preterm Intraventricular Hemorrhage

    PubMed Central

    Ley, David; Romantsik, Olga; Vallius, Suvi; Sveinsdóttir, Kristbjörg; Sveinsdóttir, Snjolaug; Agyemang, Alex A.; Baumgarten, Maria; Mörgelin, Matthias; Lutay, Nataliya; Bruschettini, Matteo; Holmqvist, Bo; Gram, Magnus

    2016-01-01

    Severe cerebral intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH) in preterm infants continues to be a major clinical problem, occurring in about 15–20% of very preterm infants. In contrast to other brain lesions the incidence of IVH has not been reduced over the last decade, but actually slightly increased. Currently over 50% of surviving infants develop post-hemorrhagic ventricular dilatation and about 35% develop severe neurological impairment, mainly cerebral palsy and intellectual disability. To date there is no therapy available to prevent infants from developing either hydrocephalus or serious neurological disability. It is known that blood rapidly accumulates within the ventricles following IVH and this leads to disruption of normal anatomy and increased local pressure. However, the molecular mechanisms causing brain injury following IVH are incompletely understood. We propose that extracellular hemoglobin is central in the pathophysiology of periventricular white matter damage following IVH. Using a preterm rabbit pup model of IVH the distribution of extracellular hemoglobin was characterized at 72 h following hemorrhage. Evaluation of histology, histochemistry, hemoglobin immunolabeling and scanning electron microscopy revealed presence of extensive amounts of extracellular hemoglobin, i.e., not retained within erythrocytes, in the periventricular white matter, widely distributed throughout the brain. Furthermore, double immunolabeling together with the migration and differentiation markers polysialic acid neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM) demonstrates that a significant proportion of the extracellular hemoglobin is distributed in areas of the periventricular white matter with high extracellular plasticity. In conclusion, these findings support that extracellular hemoglobin may contribute to the pathophysiological processes that cause irreversible damage to the immature brain following IVH. PMID:27536248

  9. Faithful contrastive features in learning.

    PubMed

    Tesar, Bruce

    2006-09-10

    This article pursues the idea of inferring aspects of phonological underlying forms directly from surface contrasts by looking at optimality theoretic linguistic systems (Prince & Smolensky, 1993/2004). The main result proves that linguistic systems satisfying certain conditions have the faithful contrastive feature property: Whenever 2 distinct morphemes contrast on the surface in a particular environment, at least 1 of the underlying features on which the 2 differ must be realized faithfully on the surface. A learning procedure exploiting the faithful contrastive feature property, contrast analysis, can set the underlying values of some features, even where featural minimal pairs do not exist, but is nevertheless fundamentally limited in what it can set. This work suggests that observation of surface contrasts between pairs of words can contribute to the learning of underlying forms, while still supporting the view that interaction with the phonological mapping will be necessary to fully determine underlying forms.

  10. Biotechnological Aspects of Microbial Extracellular Electron Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Kato, Souichiro

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular electron transfer (EET) is a type of microbial respiration that enables electron transfer between microbial cells and extracellular solid materials, including naturally-occurring metal compounds and artificial electrodes. Microorganisms harboring EET abilities have received considerable attention for their various biotechnological applications, in addition to their contribution to global energy and material cycles. In this review, current knowledge on microbial EET and its application to diverse biotechnologies, including the bioremediation of toxic metals, recovery of useful metals, biocorrosion, and microbial electrochemical systems (microbial fuel cells and microbial electrosynthesis), were introduced. Two potential biotechnologies based on microbial EET, namely the electrochemical control of microbial metabolism and electrochemical stimulation of microbial symbiotic reactions (electric syntrophy), were also discussed. PMID:26004795

  11. Nanomechanics of the Cartilage Extracellular Matrix

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Lin; Grodzinsky, Alan J.; Ortiz, Christine

    2011-08-01

    Cartilage is a hydrated biomacromolecular fiber composite located at the ends of long bones that enables proper joint lubrication, articulation, loading, and energy dissipation. Degradation of extracellular matrix molecular components and changes in their nanoscale structure greatly influence the macroscale behavior of the tissue and result in dysfunction with age, injury, and diseases such as osteoarthritis. Here, the application of the field of nanomechanics to cartilage is reviewed. Nanomechanics involves the measurement and prediction of nanoscale forces and displacements, intra- and intermolecular interactions, spatially varying mechanical properties, and other mechanical phenomena existing at small length scales. Experimental nanomechanics and theoretical nanomechanics have been applied to cartilage at varying levels of material complexity, e.g., nanoscale properties of intact tissue, the matrix associated with single cells, biomimetic molecular assemblies, and individual extracellular matrix biomolecules (such as aggrecan, collagen, and hyaluronan). These studies have contributed to establishing a fundamental mechanism-based understanding of native and engineered cartilage tissue function, quality, and pathology.

  12. Polymeric gastrointestinal MR contrast agents.

    PubMed

    Tilcock, C; Unger, E C; Ahkong, Q F; Fritz, T; Koenig, S H; Brown, R D

    1991-01-01

    Combining either paramagnetic (gadolinium chelates) or superparamagnetic (ferrite) contrast agents with polymers such as polyethylene glycol or cellulose, or with simple sugars such as dextrose, results in mixtures that exhibit improved T1 and/or T2 relaxivity compared with that of the contrast agent alone. It is suggested that the addition of such inexpensive and nontoxic polymers or saccharides may improve the effectiveness and decrease the cost of enteric contrast agents.

  13. Circulating Extracellular RNA Markers of Liver Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Irene K.; Wang, Xue; Asmann, Yan W.; Haga, Hiroaki; Patel, Tushar

    2016-01-01

    Background and Aims Although a key determinant of hepatic recovery after injury is active liver regeneration, the ability to detect ongoing regeneration is lacking. The restoration of liver mass after hepatectomy involves systemic changes with coordinated changes in gene expression guiding regenerative responses, activation of progenitor cells, and proliferation of quiescent hepatocytes. We postulated that these responses involve intercellular communication involving extracellular RNA and that these could represent biomarkers of active regenerative responses. Methods RNA sequencing was performed to identify temporal changes in serum extracellular non-coding RNA after partial hepatectomy in C57BL/6 male mice. Tissue expression of selected RNA was performed by microarray analysis and validated using qRT-PCR. Digital PCR was used to detect and quantify serum expression of selected RNA. Results A peak increase in extracellular RNA content occurred six hours after hepatectomy. RNA sequencing identified alterations in several small non-coding RNA including known and novel microRNAs, snoRNAs, tRNA, antisense and repeat elements after partial hepatectomy. Combinatorial effects and network analyses identified signal regulation, protein complex assembly, and signal transduction as the most common biological processes targeted by miRNA that altered. miR-1A and miR-181 were most significantly altered microRNA in both serum and in hepatic tissues, and their presence in serum was quantitated using digital PCR. Conclusions Extracellular RNA selectively enriched during acute regeneration can be detected within serum and represent biomarkers of ongoing liver regeneration in mice. The ability to detect ongoing active regeneration would improve the assessment of hepatic recovery from liver injury. PMID:27415797

  14. Extracellular cyclophilins in health and disease

    PubMed Central

    Bukrinsky, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Background Extracellular cyclophilins (eCyPs) are pro-inflammatory factors implicated in pathogenesis of a number of inflammatory diseases. Most pathogenic activities of eCyPs are related to their chemotactic activity towards leukocytes, which is mediated by eCyP receptor on target cells, CD147, and involves peptydil-prolyl cis-trans isomerase activity of cyclophilins. This activity is inhibited by cyclosporine A (CsA) and non-immunosuppressive derivatives of this drug. Accumulating evidence for the role of eCyPs in disease pathogenesis stimulated research on the mechanisms of eCyP-initiated events, resulting in identification of multiple signaling pathways, characterization of a variety of effector molecules released from eCyP-treated cells, and synthesis of CsA derivatives specifically blocking eCyPs. However, a number of important questions related to the mode of action of eCyPs remain unanswered. Scope of review In this article, we integrate available information on release and function of extracellular cyclophilins into a unified model, focusing on outstanding issues that need to be clarified. Major conclusions Extracellular cyclophilins are critical players in pathogenesis of a number of inflammatory diseases. Their mechanism of action involves interaction with the receptor, CD147, and initiation of a poorly characterized signal transduction process culminating in chemotaxis and production of pro-inflammatory factors. General significance Extracellular cyclophilins present an attractive target for therapeutic interventions that can be used to alleviate symptoms and consequences of acute and chronic inflammation. PMID:25445705

  15. Phase contrast MR angiography techniques.

    PubMed

    Dumoulin, C L

    1995-08-01

    Phase contrast MR methods encode information from macroscopic motion into the phase of the MR signal. Phase contrast methods can be applied with small and large fields-of-view, can give quantitative measures of velocity, and provide excellent suppression of signals from stationary tissue. Unlike time-of-flight methods, phase contrast methods directly measure flow and thus are not hindered by the artifactual appearance of tissue having short T1. Phase contrast angiograms can be two-dimensional (thin slice or projectile), three-dimensional, and/or time resolved and have applications throughout the body.

  16. Fuzzy-Contextual Contrast Enhancement.

    PubMed

    Parihar, Anil; Verma, Om; Khanna, Chintan

    2017-02-08

    This paper presents contrast enhancement algorithms based on fuzzy contextual information of the images. We introduce fuzzy similarity index and fuzzy contrast factor to capture the neighborhood characteristics of a pixel. A new histogram, using fuzzy contrast factor of each pixel is developed, and termed as the fuzzy dissimilarity histogram (FDH). A cumulative distribution function (CDF) is formed with normalized values of FDH and used as a transfer function to obtain the contrast enhanced image. The algorithm gives good contrast enhancement and preserves the natural characteristic of the image. In order to develop a contextual intensity transfer function, we introduce a fuzzy membership function based on fuzzy similarity index and coefficient of variation of the image. The contextual intensity transfer function is designed using the fuzzy membership function to achieve final contrast enhanced image. The overall algorithm is referred as the fuzzy contextual contrast-enhancement (FCCE) algorithm. The proposed algorithms are compared with conventional and state-of-art contrast enhancement algorithms. The quantitative and visual assessment of the results is performed. The results of quantitative measures are statistically analyzed using t-test. The exhaustive experimentation and analysis show the proposed algorithm efficiently enhances contrast and yields in natural visual quality images.

  17. Nuclear magnetic resonance contrast agents

    DOEpatents

    Smith, P.H.; Brainard, J.R.; Jarvinen, G.D.; Ryan, R.R.

    1997-12-30

    A family of contrast agents for use in magnetic resonance imaging and a method of enhancing the contrast of magnetic resonance images of an object by incorporating a contrast agent of this invention into the object prior to forming the images or during formation of the images. A contrast agent of this invention is a paramagnetic lanthanide hexaazamacrocyclic molecule, where a basic example has the formula LnC{sub 16}H{sub 14}N{sub 6}. Important applications of the invention are in medical diagnosis, treatment, and research, where images of portions of a human body are formed by means of magnetic resonance techniques. 10 figs.

  18. Nuclear magnetic resonance contrast agents

    DOEpatents

    Smith, Paul H.; Brainard, James R.; Jarvinen, Gordon D.; Ryan, Robert R.

    1997-01-01

    A family of contrast agents for use in magnetic resonance imaging and a method of enhancing the contrast of magnetic resonance images of an object by incorporating a contrast agent of this invention into the object prior to forming the images or during formation of the images. A contrast agent of this invention is a paramagnetic lanthanide hexaazamacrocyclic molecule, where a basic example has the formula LnC.sub.16 H.sub.14 N.sub.6. Important applications of the invention are in medical diagnosis, treatment, and research, where images of portions of a human body are formed by means of magnetic resonance techniques.

  19. Bordetella parapertussis Circumvents Neutrophil Extracellular Bactericidal Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Gorgojo, Juan; Scharrig, Emilia; Gómez, Ricardo M.; Harvill, Eric T.; Rodríguez, Maria Eugenia

    2017-01-01

    B. parapertussis is a whooping cough etiological agent with the ability to evade the immune response induced by pertussis vaccines. We previously demonstrated that in the absence of opsonic antibodies B. parapertussis hampers phagocytosis by neutrophils and macrophages and, when phagocytosed, blocks intracellular killing by interfering with phagolysosomal fusion. But neutrophils can kill and/or immobilize extracellular bacteria through non-phagocytic mechanisms such as degranulation and neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs). In this study we demonstrated that B. parapertussis also has the ability to circumvent these two neutrophil extracellular bactericidal activities. The lack of neutrophil degranulation was found dependent on the O antigen that targets the bacteria to cell lipid rafts, eventually avoiding the fusion of nascent phagosomes with specific and azurophilic granules. IgG opsonization overcame this inhibition of neutrophil degranulation. We further observed that B. parapertussis did not induce NETs release in resting neutrophils and inhibited NETs formation in response to phorbol myristate acetate (PMA) stimulation by a mechanism dependent on adenylate cyclase toxin (CyaA)-mediated inhibition of reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. Thus, B. parapertussis modulates neutrophil bactericidal activity through two different mechanisms, one related to the lack of proper NETs-inducer stimuli and the other one related to an active inhibitory mechanism. Together with previous results these data suggest that B. parapertussis has the ability to subvert the main neutrophil bactericidal functions, inhibiting efficient clearance in non-immune hosts. PMID:28095485

  20. Extracellular Aldonolactonase from Myceliophthora thermophila▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Beeson, William T.; Iavarone, Anthony T.; Hausmann, Corinne D.; Cate, Jamie H. D.; Marletta, Michael A.

    2011-01-01

    Fungi secrete many different enzymes to deconstruct lignocellulosic biomass, including several families of hydrolases, oxidative enzymes, and many uncharacterized proteins. Here we describe the isolation, characterization, and primary sequence analysis of an extracellular aldonolactonase from the thermophilic fungus Myceliophthora thermophila (synonym Sporotrichum thermophile). The lactonase is a 48-kDa glycoprotein with a broad pH optimum. The enzyme catalyzes the hydrolysis of glucono-δ-lactone and cellobiono-δ-lactone with an apparent second-order rate constant, kcat/Km, of ∼1 × 106 M−1 s−1 at pH 5.0 and 25°C but is unable to hydrolyze xylono-γ-lactone or arabino-γ-lactone. Sequence analyses of the lactonase show that it has distant homology to cis-carboxy-muconate lactonizing enzymes (CMLE) as well as 6-phosphogluconolactonases present in some bacteria. The M. thermophila genome contains two predicted extracellular lactonase genes, and expression of both genes is induced by the presence of pure cellulose. Homologues of the M. thermophila lactonase, which are also predicted to be extracellular, are present in nearly all known cellulolytic ascomycetes. PMID:21075873

  1. Effective extracellular trehalose production by Cellulosimicrobium cellulans.

    PubMed

    Seto, A; Yoshijima, H; Toyomasu, K; Ogawa, H-O; Kakuta, H; Hosono, K; Ueda, K; Beppu, T

    2004-06-01

    A bacterium isolated from a petal of Casa Blanca Lily (ST26 strain) produced a marked amount of extracellular trehalose (alpha- d-glucopyranosyl-[1,1]-alpha- d-glucopyranose) in culture medium containing glucose. 16S rDNA-based phylogeny showed that ST26 belongs to, or is related to, Cellulosimicrobium cellulans, a close relative of Cellulomonas spp. Various Cellulomonas strains obtained from culture collections also showed extracellular trehalose productivity, suggesting that trehalose production is a common property of this bacterial genus. ST26 accumulated trehalose in medium supplied with glucose but not with sucrose, glycerol or maltose. Effective extracellular trehalose production by ST26 was achieved by supplying 0.5-1% ammonium sulfate and 0.5-1% CaCO(3). The addition of CaCO(3) adjusted the pH of the culture to around 5.0. The optimized culture conditions yielded trehalose from glucose at a conversion rate of 61%. The addition of ammonium sulfate greatly reduced the dry cell weight of ST26 and intracellular content of trehalose, which suggests that the addition of ammonium sulfate makes ST26 cells leak trehalose into the medium. ST26 effectively propagated in minimal medium containing trehalose as a sole carbon source, which suggests that trehalose serves as a carbohydrate reserve of this organism.

  2. [Pharmacology of the extracellular calcium ion receptor].

    PubMed

    Ruat, Martial

    2003-01-01

    The calcium sensing receptor (CaSR) belongs to family 3 of G-protein coupled receptors. The CaSR, expressed at the surface of the parathyroid cells, controls parathyroid hormone (PTH) secretion and is the main regulator of calcium homeostasis. Its activity is regulated by small changes in the physiological concentrations of calcium and magnesium ions present in the serum and extracellular fluids, leading to the stimulation of the phospholipases C and A2. Molecules that potentiate the effect of extracellular calcium are called calcimimetics. They reduce the PTH level in vivo and have been proposed to be of therapeutic benefit for the treatment of both primary and secondary hyperparathyroidism. The blocking of CaSR by a calcilytic molecule results in the increase in serum PTH and might be of interest in the treatment of osteoporosis. The CaSR is also expressed in the thyroid, kidney, bone and in neuronal and glial cell populations, where it should be involved in the complex responses associated with calcium and magnesium ions present in the extracellular fluids.

  3. Extracellular DNA: A Bridge to Cancer.

    PubMed

    Hawes, Martha C; Wen, Fushi; Elquza, Emad

    2015-10-15

    DNase I is a secreted enzyme whose function has been presumed to control "waste management" in the human system, by degrading DNA that leaks from dead and dying cells. Emerging studies have instead yielded evidence that DNase I plays a central role in newly defined dynamics of immune and autoimmune diseases, as well as cancer and vascular disorders, including thrombosis. Cancer cells have been reported to be associated with distinctive extracellular structures that facilitate aggregation and implantation. The fact that DNA is a component of such structures and that it plays a role in cancer development is illustrated by direct evidence: DNase I added to tumor cells eliminates the structures and inhibits tumorigenicity of some cancer cell lines. DNase I injected into experimental animals, moreover, results in significant inhibition of metastasis. Despite independent observations of such phenomena in diverse cancers for over 50 years, the potential for using DNase I as a clinical tool to prevent or treat cancer remains unexplored. The discovery of neutrophil extracellular traps has yielded a conceptual framework for interpreting how extracellular DNA may function in cancer development and why it may prove to be an important clinical target in stopping cancer outside the cell.

  4. Differential detergent sensitivity of extracellular vesicle subpopulations.

    PubMed

    Osteikoetxea, Xabier; Sódar, Barbara; Németh, Andrea; Szabó-Taylor, Katalin; Pálóczi, Krisztina; Vukman, Krisztina V; Tamási, Viola; Balogh, Andrea; Kittel, Ágnes; Pállinger, Éva; Buzás, Edit Irén

    2015-10-14

    Extracellular vesicles (including exosomes, microvesicles and apoptotic bodies) are currently attracting rapidly increasing attention from various fields of biology due to their ability to carry complex information and act as autocrine, paracrine and even endocrine intercellular messengers. In the present study we investigated the sensitivity of size-based subpopulations of extracellular vesicles to different concentrations of detergents including sodium dodecyl sulphate, Triton X-100, Tween 20 and deoxycholate. We determined the required detergent concentration that lysed each of the vesicle subpopulations secreted by Jurkat, THP-1, MiaPaCa and U937 human cell lines. We characterized the vesicles by tunable resistive pulse sensing, flow cytometry and transmission electron microscopy. Microvesicles and apoptotic bodies were found to be more sensitive to detergent lysis than exosomes. Furthermore, we found evidence that sodium dodecyl sulphate and Triton X-100 were more effective in vesicle lysis at low concentrations than deoxycholate or Tween 20. Taken together, our data suggest that a combination of differential detergent lysis with tunable resistive pulse sensing or flow cytometry may prove useful for simple and fast differentiation between exosomes and other extracellular vesicle subpopulations as well as between vesicular and non-vesicular structures.

  5. Listeria monocytogenes induces mast cell extracellular traps.

    PubMed

    Campillo-Navarro, Marcia; Leyva-Paredes, Kahiry; Donis-Maturano, Luis; González-Jiménez, Marco; Paredes-Vivas, Yuriria; Cerbulo-Vázquez, Arturo; Serafín-López, Jeanet; García-Pérez, Blanca; Ullrich, Stephen E; Flores-Romo, Leopoldo; Pérez-Tapia, Sonia M; Estrada-Parra, Sergio; Estrada-García, Iris; Chacón-Salinas, Rommel

    2017-02-01

    Mast cells play an essential role in different immunological phenomena including allergy and infectious diseases. Several bacteria induce mast cell activation leading to degranulation and the production of several cytokines and chemokines. However, mast cells also have different microbicidal activities such as phagocytosis and the release of DNA with embedded granular proteins known as Mast Cell Extracellular Traps (MCETs). Although previous reports indicate that extracellular bacteria are able to induce MCETs little is known if intracellular bacteria can induce these structures. In this work, we evaluated MCETs induction by the intracellular bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. We found that mast cells released DNA after stimulation with L. monocytogenes, and this DNA was complexed to histone and tryptase. Before extracellular DNA release, L. monocytogenes induced modifications to the mast cell nuclear envelope and DNA was detected outside the nucleus. L. monocytogenes stimulated mast cells to produce significant amounts of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and blocking NADPH oxidase diminished DNA release by mast cells. Finally, MCETs showed antimicrobial activity against L. monocytogenes that was partially blocked when β-hexosaminidase activity was inhibited. These results show that L. monocytogenes induces mast cells to produce microbicidal MCETs, suggesting a role for mast cells in containing infection beyond the induction of inflammation.

  6. Airway and Extracellular Matrix Mechanics in COPD

    PubMed Central

    Bidan, Cécile M.; Veldsink, Annemiek C.; Meurs, Herman; Gosens, Reinoud

    2015-01-01

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one of the most common lung diseases worldwide, and is characterized by airflow obstruction that is not fully reversible with treatment. Even though airflow obstruction is caused by airway smooth muscle contraction, the extent of airway narrowing depends on a range of other structural and functional determinants that impact on active and passive tissue mechanics. Cells and extracellular matrix in the airway and parenchymal compartments respond both passively and actively to the mechanical stimulation induced by smooth muscle contraction. In this review, we summarize the factors that regulate airway narrowing and provide insight into the relative contributions of different constituents of the extracellular matrix and their biomechanical impact on airway obstruction. We then review the changes in extracellular matrix composition in the airway and parenchymal compartments at different stages of COPD, and finally discuss how these changes impact airway narrowing and the development of airway hyperresponsiveness. Finally, we position these data in the context of therapeutic research focused on defective tissue repair. As a conclusion, we propose that future works should primarily target mild or early COPD, prior to the widespread structural changes in the alveolar compartment that are more characteristic of severe COPD. PMID:26696894

  7. Nematicidal Bacteria Associated to Pinewood Nematode Produce Extracellular Proteases

    PubMed Central

    Francisco, Romeu; Verissimo, Paula; Santos, Susana S.; Fonseca, Luís; Abrantes, Isabel M. O.; Morais, Paula V.

    2013-01-01

    Bacteria associated with the nematode Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, a pathogen of trees and the causal agent of pine wilt disease (PWD) may play a role in the disease. In order to evaluate their role (positive or negative to the tree), strains isolated from the track of nematodes from infected Pinus pinaster trees were screened, in vitro, for their nematicidal potential. The bacterial products, from strains more active in killing nematodes, were screened in order to identify and characterize the nematicidal agent. Forty-seven strains were tested and, of these, 21 strains showed capacity to produce extracellular products with nematicidal activity. All Burkholderia strains were non-toxic. In contrast, all Serratia strains except one exhibited high toxicity. Nematodes incubated with Serratia strains showed, by SEM observation, deposits of bacteria on the nematode cuticle. The most nematicidal strain, Serratia sp. A88copa13, produced proteases in the supernatant. The use of selective inhibitors revealed that a serine protease with 70 kDa was majorly responsible for the toxicity of the supernatant. This extracellular serine protease is different phylogenetically, in size and biochemically from previously described proteases. Nematicidal assays revealed differences in nematicidal activity of the proteases to different species of Bursaphelenchus, suggesting its usefulness in a primary screen of the nematodes. This study offers the basis for further investigation of PWD and brings new insights on the role bacteria play in the defense of pine trees against B. xylophilus. Understanding all the factors involved is important in order to develop strategies to control B. xylophilus dispersion. PMID:24244546

  8. Extracellular pH modulates GABAergic neurotransmission in rat hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Chen, Z L; Huang, R Q

    2014-06-20

    Changes in extracellular pH have a modulatory effect on GABAA receptor function. It has been reported that pH sensitivity of the GABA receptor is dependent on subunit composition and GABA concentration. Most of previous investigations focused on GABA-evoked currents, which only reflect the postsynaptic receptors. The physiological relevance of pH modulation of GABAergic neurotransmission is not fully elucidated. In the present studies, we examined the influence of extracellular pH on the GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory neurotransmission in rat hypothalamic neurons. The inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs), tonic currents, and the GABA-evoked currents were recorded with whole-cell patch techniques on the hypothalamic slices from Sprague-Dawley rats at 15-26 postnatal days. The amplitude and frequency of spontaneous GABA IPSCs were significantly increased while the external pH was changed from 7.3 to 8.4. In the acidic pH (6.4), the spontaneous GABA IPSCs were reduced in amplitude and frequency. The pH induced changes in miniature GABA IPSCs (mIPSCs) similar to that in spontaneous IPSCs. The pH effect on the postsynaptic GABA receptors was assessed with exogenously applied varying concentrations of GABA. The tonic currents and the currents evoked by sub-saturating concentration of GABA ([GABA]) (10 μM) were inhibited by acidic pH and potentiated by alkaline pH. In contrast, the currents evoked by saturating [GABA] (1mM) were not affected by pH changes. We also investigated the influence of pH buffers and buffering capacity on pH sensitivity of GABAA receptors on human recombinant α1β2γ2 GABAA receptors stably expressed in HEK 293 cells. The pH influence on GABAA receptors was similar in HEPES- and MES-buffered media, and not dependent on protonated buffers, suggesting that the observed pH effect on GABA response is a specific consequence of changes in extracellular protons. Our data suggest that the hydrogen ions suppress the GABAergic neurotransmission

  9. The modulation of TRPM7 currents by nafamostat mesilate depends directly upon extracellular concentrations of divalent cations

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Concentrations of extracellular divalent cations (Ca2+ and Mg2+) fall substantially during intensive synaptic transmission as well as during some pathophysiological conditions such as epilepsy and brain ischemia. Here we report that a synthetic serine protease inhibitor, nafamostat mesylate (NM), and several of its analogues, block recombinant TRPM7 currents expressed in HEK293T cells in inverse relationship to the concentration of extracellular divalent cations. Lowering extracellular Ca2+ and Mg2+ also evokes a divalent-sensitive non-selective cation current that is mediated by TRPM7 expression in hippocampal neurons. In cultured hippocampal neurons, NM blocked these TRPM7-mediated currents with an apparent affinity of 27 μM, as well as the paradoxical Ca2+ influx associated with lowering extracellular Ca2+. Unexpectedly, pre-exposure to NM strongly potentiated TRPM7 currents. In the presence of physiological concentrations of extracellular divalent cations, NM activates TRPM7. The stimulating effects of NM on TRPM7 currents are also inversely related to extracellular Ca2+ and Mg2+. DAPI and HSB but not netropsin, blocked and stimulated TRPM7. In contrast, mono-cationic, the metabolites of NM, p-GBA and AN, as well as protease inhibitor leupeptin and gabexate failed to substantially modulate TRPM7. NM thus provides a molecular template for the design of putative modulators of TRPM7. PMID:21122141

  10. Faithful Contrastive Features in Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tesar, Bruce

    2006-01-01

    This article pursues the idea of inferring aspects of phonological underlying forms directly from surface contrasts by looking at optimality theoretic linguistic systems (Prince & Smolensky, 1993/2004). The main result proves that linguistic systems satisfying certain conditions have the faithful contrastive feature property: Whenever 2…

  11. Extracellular calcium elicits a chemokinetic response from monocytes in vitro and in vivo

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olszak, I. T.; Poznansky, M. C.; Evans, R. H.; Olson, D.; Kos, C.; Pollak, M. R.; Brown, E. M.; Scadden, D. T.; O'Malley, B. W. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    Recruitment of macrophages to sites of cell death is critical for induction of an immunologic response. Calcium concentrations in extracellular fluids vary markedly, and are particularly high at sites of injury or infection. We hypothesized that extracellular calcium participates in modulating the immune response, perhaps acting via the seven-transmembrane calcium-sensing receptor (CaR) on mature monocytes/macrophages. We observed a dose-dependent increase in monocyte chemotaxis in response to extracellular calcium or the selective allosteric CaR activator NPS R-467. In contrast, monocytes derived from mice deficient in CaR lacked the normal chemotactic response to a calcium gradient. Notably, CaR activation of monocytes bearing the receptor synergistically augmented the transmigration response of monocytes to the chemokine MCP-1 in association with increased cell-surface expression of its cognate receptor, CCR2. Conversely, stimulation of monocytes with MCP-1 or SDF-1alpha reciprocally increased CaR expression, suggesting a dual-enhancing interaction of Ca(2+) with chemokines in recruiting inflammatory cells. Subcutaneous administration in mice of Ca(2+), MCP-1, or (more potently) the combination of Ca(2+) and MCP-1, elicited an inflammatory infiltrate consisting of monocytes/macrophages. Thus extracellular calcium functions as an ionic chemokinetic agent capable of modulating the innate immune response in vivo and in vitro by direct and indirect actions on monocytic cells. Calcium deposition may be both consequence and cause of chronic inflammatory changes at sites of injury, infection, and atherosclerosis.

  12. Measurement of visual contrast sensitivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vongierke, H. E.; Marko, A. R.

    1985-04-01

    This invention involves measurement of the visual contrast sensitivity (modulation transfer) function of a human subject by means of linear or circular spatial frequency pattern on a cathode ray tube whose contrast is automatically decreasing or increasing depending on the subject pressing or releasing a hand-switch button. The threshold of detection of the pattern modulation is found by the subject by adjusting the contrast to values which vary about the subject's threshold thereby determining the threshold and also providing by the magnitude of the contrast fluctuations between reversals some estimate of the variability of the subject's absolute threshold. The invention also involves the slow automatic sweeping of the spatial frequency of the pattern over the spatial frequencies after preset time intervals or after threshold has been defined at each frequency by a selected number of subject-determined threshold crossings; i.e., contrast reversals.

  13. The new numbers contrast sensitivity chart for contrast sensitivity measurement

    PubMed Central

    Khambhiphant, Bharkbhum; Tulvatana, Wasee; Busayarat, Mathu

    2012-01-01

    Purpose To develop and assess the agreement between the 3 newly made numbers contrast sensitivity charts and the MARS contrast sensitivity chart (MARS) in contrast sensitivity measurement. Methods We developed 3 numbers contrast sensitivity charts for right, left and both eyes. Two hundred subjects were assigned to read numbers 0-9 for determining the degree of difficulty. Selected seven numbers were randomly arranged and the contrast of each number was decreased by the constant factor of 0.04 log units in the units as in the MARS. We assigned 112 subjects with visual acuity range from 20/480 to 20/20 to test once with the new chart and then with MARS Chart monocularly and binocularly by random order. Bland-Altman analysis for comparing two charts was performed. Results Bland-Altman analysis between 2 charts showed the mean differences were 0.04, 0.03, 0.04 log CS and the 95% limit of agreement (LOA) of the bias were (+0.26, −0.19), (+0.26, −0.20), (+0.25, −0.17) log CS for right, left and binocular. The Bland-Altman plot indicates a good concordance in 3 charts. Conclusions These charts show reasonable agreement and can be used interchangeably with the MARS. It is helpful for Thai people who can only read numbers in doing the test. We can use them in routinely contrast sensitivity measurement.

  14. Contrasting Rhetorics/Contrasting Cultures: Why Contrastive Rhetoric Needs a Better Conceptualization of Culture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Atkinson, Dwight

    2004-01-01

    This paper deals with an underdeveloped notion in the EAP sub-discipline of contrastive rhetoric: culture. It argues that a better conceptualization of contrastive rhetoric needs to include a better conceptualization of culture. After engaging with the complex question "What is culture?" the paper moves on to consider four sets of current issues…

  15. Extracellular killing of inhaled pneumococci in rats

    SciTech Connect

    Coonrod, J.D.; Marple, S.; Holmes, G.P.; Rehm, S.R.

    1987-12-01

    Early clearance of inhaled Staphylococcus aureus is believed to be caused by phagocytosis by alveolar macrophages. In murine models inhaled pneumococci are cleared even more rapidly than S. aureus. Conventional opsonins appear to play no role in this clearance, and recently it has been shown that murine alveolar lining material contains free fatty acids and other soluble factors that are directly bactericidal for pneumococci. To determine whether non-phagocytic factors are involved in pneumococcal clearance, we compared the site of killing of inhaled pneumococci and S. aureus in rats using histologic methods and bronchoalveolar lavage. Spontaneous lysis of pneumococci was prevented by use of autolysin-defective pneumococci or by substitution of ethanolamine for choline in the cell wall. Histologic studies showed that the percent of inhaled staphylococci associated with alveolar macrophages always exceeded the percent of staphylococci cleared, whereas there was little association of pneumococci with macrophages during clearance. Analysis of the intracellular or extracellular location of iron 59 in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid of rats that had inhaled aerosols of /sup 59/Fe-labeled bacteria suggested that staphylococci were killed predominantly in macrophages and pneumococci in the extracellular space. When /sup 59/Fe-labeled pneumococci or staphylococci were ingested and killed by macrophages in vitro, the /sup 59/Fe remained with the macrophages, suggesting that the extracellular location of /sup 59/Fe during pneumococcal killing in vivo was not caused by rapid turnover of /sup 59/Fe in macrophages. Studies of the site of killing of inhaled type 25 pneumococci labeled exclusively in the cell wall with carbon 14-ethanolamine confirmed the results obtained with /sup 59/Fe-labeled pneumococci. Thus, early killing of inhaled pneumococci, unlike staphylococci, appears to take place outside of macrophages.

  16. Microbial extracellular polysaccharides and plagioclase dissolution

    SciTech Connect

    Welch, S.A.; Barker, W.W.; Banfield, J.F.

    1999-05-01

    Bytownite feldspar was dissolved in batch reactors in solutions of starch (glucose polymer), gum xanthan (glucose, mannose, glucuronic acid), pectin (poly-galacturonic acid), and four alginates (mannuronic and guluronic acid) with a range of molecular weights (low, medium, high and uncharacterized) to evaluate the effect of extracellular microbial polymers on mineral dissolution rates. Solutions were analyzed for dissolved Si and Al as an indicator of feldspar dissolution. At neutral pH, feldspar dissolution was inhibited by five of the acid polysaccharides, gum xanthan, pectin, alginate low, alginate medium, alginate high, compared to an organic-free control. An uncharacterized alginate substantially enhanced both Si and Al release from the feldspar. Starch, a neutral polysaccharide, had no apparent effect. Under mildly acidic conditions, initial pH {approx} 4, all of the polymers enhanced feldspar dissolution compared to the inorganic controls. Si release from feldspar in starch solution exceeded the control by a factor of three. Pectin and gum xanthan increased feldspar dissolution by a factor of 10, and the alginates enhanced feldspar dissolution by a factor of 50 to 100. Si and Al concentrations increased with time, even though solutions were supersaturated with respect to several possible secondary phases. Under acidic conditions, initial pH {approx} 3, below the pK{sub a} of the carboxylic acid groups, dissolution rates increased, but the relative increase due to the polysaccharides is lower, approximately a factor of two to ten. Microbial extracellular polymers play a complex role in mineral weathering. Polymers appear to inhibit dissolution under some conditions, possibly by irreversibly binding to the mineral surfaces. The extracellular polysaccharides can also enhance dissolution by providing protons and complexing with ions in solution.

  17. Mechanism of cryoprotection by extracellular polymeric solutes.

    PubMed Central

    Takahashi, T; Hirsh, A; Erbe, E; Williams, R J

    1988-01-01

    To elucidate the means by which polymer solutions protect cells from freezing injury, we cooled human monocytes to -80 degrees C or below in the presence of various polymers. Differential scanning calorimetric studies showed that those polymers which protect cells best have a limiting glass transition temperature (T'g) of approximately -20 degrees C; those with a T'g significantly higher or lower did not protect. Freeze-etch electron micrographs indicated that intracellular ice crystals had formed during this freezing procedure, but remained smaller than approximately 300 nm in the same proportion of cells as survived rapid thawing. We propose that cryoprotection of slowly frozen monocytes by polymers is a consequence of a T'g of -20 degrees C in the extracellular solution. In our hypothesis, the initial concentration and viscosity of protective polymer solutions reduce the extent and rate of cell water loss to extracellular ice and limit the injurious osmotic stress, which cells face during freezing at moderate rates to -20 degrees C. Below -20 degrees C, glass formation prevents further osmotic stress by isolating cells from extracellular ice crystals, virtually eliminating cell water loss at lower temperatures. On the other hand, the protective polymer solutions will allow some diffusion of water away from cells at temperatures above T'g. If conditions are correct, cells will concentrate the cytoplasm sufficiently during the initial cooling to T'g to avoid lethal intracellular freezing between T'g and the intracellular Tg, which has been depressed to low temperatures by that concentration. Thus, when polymers are used as cryoprotective agents, cell survival is contingent upon maintenance of osmotic stress within narrow limits. Images FIGURE 9 FIGURE 9 PMID:2462928

  18. Anomalous extracellular diffusion in rat cerebellum.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Fanrong; Hrabe, Jan; Hrabetova, Sabina

    2015-05-05

    Extracellular space (ECS) is a major channel transporting biologically active molecules and drugs in the brain. Diffusion-mediated transport of these substances is hindered by the ECS structure but the microscopic basis of this hindrance is not fully understood. One hypothesis proposes that the hindrance originates in large part from the presence of dead-space (DS) microdomains that can transiently retain diffusing molecules. Because previous theoretical and modeling work reported an initial period of anomalous diffusion in similar environments, we expected that brain regions densely populated by DS microdomains would exhibit anomalous extracellular diffusion. Specifically, we targeted granular layers (GL) of rat and turtle cerebella that are populated with large and geometrically complex glomeruli. The integrative optical imaging (IOI) method was employed to evaluate diffusion of fluorophore-labeled dextran (MW 3000) in GL, and the IOI data analysis was adapted to quantify the anomalous diffusion exponent dw from the IOI records. Diffusion was significantly anomalous in rat GL, where dw reached 4.8. In the geometrically simpler turtle GL, dw was elevated but not robustly anomalous (dw = 2.6). The experimental work was complemented by numerical Monte Carlo simulations of anomalous ECS diffusion in several three-dimensional tissue models containing glomeruli-like structures. It demonstrated that both the duration of transiently anomalous diffusion and the anomalous exponent depend on the size of model glomeruli and the degree of their wrapping. In conclusion, we have found anomalous extracellular diffusion in the GL of rat cerebellum. This finding lends support to the DS microdomain hypothesis. Transiently anomalous diffusion also has a profound effect on the spatiotemporal distribution of molecules released into the ECS, especially at diffusion distances on the order of a few cell diameters, speeding up short-range diffusion-mediated signals in less permeable

  19. Anomalous Extracellular Diffusion in Rat Cerebellum

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Fanrong; Hrabe, Jan; Hrabetova, Sabina

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular space (ECS) is a major channel transporting biologically active molecules and drugs in the brain. Diffusion-mediated transport of these substances is hindered by the ECS structure but the microscopic basis of this hindrance is not fully understood. One hypothesis proposes that the hindrance originates in large part from the presence of dead-space (DS) microdomains that can transiently retain diffusing molecules. Because previous theoretical and modeling work reported an initial period of anomalous diffusion in similar environments, we expected that brain regions densely populated by DS microdomains would exhibit anomalous extracellular diffusion. Specifically, we targeted granular layers (GL) of rat and turtle cerebella that are populated with large and geometrically complex glomeruli. The integrative optical imaging (IOI) method was employed to evaluate diffusion of fluorophore-labeled dextran (MW 3000) in GL, and the IOI data analysis was adapted to quantify the anomalous diffusion exponent dw from the IOI records. Diffusion was significantly anomalous in rat GL, where dw reached 4.8. In the geometrically simpler turtle GL, dw was elevated but not robustly anomalous (dw = 2.6). The experimental work was complemented by numerical Monte Carlo simulations of anomalous ECS diffusion in several three-dimensional tissue models containing glomeruli-like structures. It demonstrated that both the duration of transiently anomalous diffusion and the anomalous exponent depend on the size of model glomeruli and the degree of their wrapping. In conclusion, we have found anomalous extracellular diffusion in the GL of rat cerebellum. This finding lends support to the DS microdomain hypothesis. Transiently anomalous diffusion also has a profound effect on the spatiotemporal distribution of molecules released into the ECS, especially at diffusion distances on the order of a few cell diameters, speeding up short-range diffusion-mediated signals in less permeable

  20. EXTRACELLULAR POLYSACCHARIDES OF AZOTOBACTER VINELANDII1

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Gary H.; Johnstone, Donald B.

    1964-01-01

    Cohen, Gary H. (University of Vermont, Burlington), and Donald B. Johnstone. Extracellular polysaccharides of Azotobacter vinelandii. J. Bacteriol. 88:329–338. 1964.—Extracellular polysaccharides synthetized by Azotobacter vinelandii strains 155, 102, and 3A were shown to be carboxylic acid heteropolysaccharides of apparent high molecular weight. Cells were grown in a nitrogen-free, mineral broth medium with 2% sucrose. Extracellular slime was recovered by centrifugation and purified by repeated alcohol precipitation and Sevag deproteinization. Capsular polysaccharide was recovered from washed cells by mild alkaline digestion. Methods of isolation and purification appeared to provide polysaccharide showing no evidence of heterogeneity when examined by chemical and physical methods. Infrared analysis of purified slime from the three strains suggested fundamental structural similarities. Colorimetric, paper chromatographic, and enzymatic analyses on both intact and acid-hydrolyzed slime polysaccharide indicated that the polymers contained in common galacturonic acid, [α] d-glucose, and rhamnose at a ratio of approximately 43:2:1, as well as a hexuronic acid lactone, probably mannurono-lactone. However, as shown by chemical and infrared analysis, minor differences did exist; namely, slime from strain 155 and 102 contained o-acetyl groups, whereas slime from strain 3A contained none. A sialic acid-like component (1.5% of dry weight of the polysaccharide, calculated as N-acetyl neuraminic acid), was found only in the slime of strain 155. Capsular polysaccharide composition closely resembled that for slime. It is of interest that the major slime components were identical whether the energy source provided for the cells was sucrose, glucose, fructose, or ethanol. PMID:14203348

  1. Extracellular Signatures as Indicators of Processing Methods

    SciTech Connect

    Wahl, Karen L.

    2012-01-09

    As described in other chapters within this volume, many aspects of microbial cells vary with culture conditions and therefore can potentially be analyzed as forensic signatures of growth conditions. In addition to changes or variations in components of the microbes themselves, extracellular materials indicative of production processes may remain associated with the final bacterial product. It is well recognized that even with considerable effort to make pure products such as fine chemicals or pharmaceuticals, trace impurities from components or synthesis steps associated with production processes can be detected in the final product. These impurities can be used as indicators of production source or methods, such as to help connect drugs of abuse to supply chains. Extracellular residue associated with microbial cells could similarly help to characterize production processes. For successful growth of microorganisms on culture media there must be an available source of carbon, nitrogen, inorganic phosphate and sulfur, trace metals, water and vitamins. The pH, temperature, and a supply of oxygen or other gases must also be appropriate for a given organism for successful culture. The sources of these components and the range in temperature, pH and other variables has adapted over the years with currently a wide range of possible combinations of media components, recipes and parameters to choose from for a given organism. Because of this wide variability in components, mixtures of components, and other parameters, there is the potential for differentiation of cultured organisms based on changes in culture conditions. The challenge remains how to narrow the field of potential combinations and be able to attribute variations in the final bacterial product and extracellular signatures associated with the final product to information about the culture conditions or recipe used in the production of that product.

  2. Extracellular matrix signaling in morphogenesis and repair.

    PubMed

    Clause, Kelly C; Barker, Thomas H

    2013-10-01

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) is critically important for many cellular processes including growth, differentiation, survival, and morphogenesis. Cells remodel and reshape the ECM by degrading and reassembling it, playing an active role in sculpting their surrounding environment and directing their own phenotypes. Both mechanical and biochemical molecules influence ECM dynamics in multiple ways; by releasing small bioactive signaling molecules, releasing growth factors stored within the ECM, eliciting structural changes to matrix proteins which expose cryptic sites and by degrading matrix proteins directly. The dynamic reciprocal communication between cells and the ECM plays a fundamental roll in tissue development, homeostasis, and wound healing.

  3. The evolution of metazoan extracellular matrix

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    The modular domain structure of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins and their genes has allowed extensive exon/domain shuffling during evolution to generate hundreds of ECM proteins. Many of these arose early during metazoan evolution and have been highly conserved ever since. Others have undergone duplication and divergence during evolution, and novel combinations of domains have evolved to generate new ECM proteins, particularly in the vertebrate lineage. The recent sequencing of several genomes has revealed many details of this conservation and evolution of ECM proteins to serve diverse functions in metazoa. PMID:22431747

  4. Small intestine contrast injection (image)

    MedlinePlus

    ... and throat, through the stomach into the small intestine. When in place, contrast dye is introduced and ... means of demonstrating whether or not the small intestine is normal when abnormality is suspected.

  5. Automated segmentation of middle hepatic vein in non-contrast x-ray CT images based on an atlas-driven approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kitagawa, Teruhiko; Zhou, Xiangrong; Hara, Takeshi; Fujita, Hiroshi; Yokoyama, Ryujiro; Kondo, Hiroshi; Kanematsu, Masayuki; Hoshi, Hiroaki

    2008-03-01

    In order to support the diagnosis of hepatic diseases, understanding the anatomical structures of hepatic lobes and hepatic vessels is necessary. Although viewing and understanding the hepatic vessels in contrast media-enhanced CT images is easy, the observation of the hepatic vessels in non-contrast X-ray CT images that are widely used for the screening purpose is difficult. We are developing a computer-aided diagnosis (CAD) system to support the liver diagnosis based on non-contrast X-ray CT images. This paper proposes a new approach to segment the middle hepatic vein (MHV), a key structure (landmark) for separating the liver region into left and right lobes. Extraction and classification of hepatic vessels are difficult in non-contrast X-ray CT images because the contrast between hepatic vessels and other liver tissues is low. Our approach uses an atlas-driven method by the following three stages. (1) Construction of liver atlases of left and right hepatic lobes using a learning datasets. (2) Fully-automated enhancement and extraction of hepatic vessels in liver regions. (3) Extraction of MHV based on the results of (1) and (2). The proposed approach was applied to 22 normal liver cases of non-contrast X-ray CT images. The preliminary results show that the proposed approach achieves the success in 14 cases for MHV extraction.

  6. A theory of behavioral contrast.

    PubMed

    Killeen, Peter R

    2014-11-01

    The reinforcers that maintain target instrumental responses also reinforce other responses that compete with them for expression. This competition, and its imbalance at points of transition between different schedules of reinforcement, causes behavioral contrast. The imbalance is caused by differences in the rates at which different responses come under the control of component stimuli. A model for this theory of behavioral contrast is constructed by expanding the coupling coefficient of MPR (Killeen, 1994). The coupling coefficient gives the degree of association of a reinforcer with the target response (as opposed to other competing responses). Competing responses, often identified as interim or adjunctive or superstitious behavior, are intrinsic to reinforcement schedules, especially interval schedules. In addition to that base-rate of competition, additional competing responses may spill over from the prior component, causing initial contrast; and they may be modulated by conditioned reinforcement or punishment from stimuli associated with subsequent component change, causing terminal contrast. A formalization of these hypotheses employed (a) a hysteresis model of off-target responses giving rise to initial contrast, and (b) a competing traces model of the suppression or enhancement of ongoing competitive responses by signals of following-schedule transition. The theory was applied to transient contrast, the following schedule effect, and the component duration effect.

  7. Light Regimes Shape Utilization of Extracellular Organic C and N in a Cyanobacterial Biofilm

    PubMed Central

    Stuart, Rhona K.; Mayali, Xavier; Boaro, Amy A.; Zemla, Adam; Everroad, R. Craig; Nilson, Daniel; Weber, Peter K.; Lipton, Mary; Bebout, Brad M.; Pett-Ridge, Jennifer

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Although it is becoming clear that many microbial primary producers can also play a role as organic consumers, we know very little about the metabolic regulation of photoautotroph organic matter consumption. Cyanobacteria in phototrophic biofilms can reuse extracellular organic carbon, but the metabolic drivers of extracellular processes are surprisingly complex. We investigated the metabolic foundations of organic matter reuse by comparing exoproteome composition and incorporation of 13C-labeled and 15N-labeled cyanobacterial extracellular organic matter (EOM) in a unicyanobacterial biofilm incubated using different light regimes. In the light and the dark, cyanobacterial direct organic C assimilation accounted for 32% and 43%, respectively, of all organic C assimilation in the community. Under photosynthesis conditions, we measured increased excretion of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) and proteins involved in micronutrient transport, suggesting that requirements for micronutrients may drive EOM assimilation during daylight hours. This interpretation was supported by photosynthesis inhibition experiments, in which cyanobacteria incorporated N-rich EOM-derived material. In contrast, under dark, C-starved conditions, cyanobacteria incorporated C-rich EOM-derived organic matter, decreased excretion of EPS, and showed an increased abundance of degradative exoproteins, demonstrating the use of the extracellular domain for C storage. Sequence-structure modeling of one of these exoproteins predicted a specific hydrolytic activity that was subsequently detected, confirming increased EOM degradation in the dark. Associated heterotrophic bacteria increased in abundance and upregulated transport proteins under dark relative to light conditions. Taken together, our results indicate that biofilm cyanobacteria are successful competitors for organic C and N and that cyanobacterial nutrient and energy requirements control the use of EOM. PMID:27353754

  8. Defining the extracellular matrix using proteomics

    PubMed Central

    Byron, Adam; Humphries, Jonathan D; Humphries, Martin J

    2013-01-01

    The cell microenvironment has a profound influence on the behaviour, growth and survival of cells. The extracellular matrix (ECM) provides not only mechanical and structural support to cells and tissues but also binds soluble ligands and transmembrane receptors to provide spatial coordination of signalling processes. The ability of cells to sense the chemical, mechanical and topographical features of the ECM enables them to integrate complex, multiparametric information into a coherent response to the surrounding microenvironment. Consequently, dysregulation or mutation of ECM components results in a broad range of pathological conditions. Characterization of the composition of ECM derived from various cells has begun to reveal insights into ECM structure and function, and mechanisms of disease. Proteomic methodologies permit the global analysis of subcellular systems, but extracellular and transmembrane proteins present analytical difficulties to proteomic strategies owing to the particular biochemical properties of these molecules. Here, we review advances in proteomic approaches that have been applied to furthering our understanding of the ECM microenvironment. We survey recent studies that have addressed challenges in the analysis of ECM and discuss major outcomes in the context of health and disease. In addition, we summarize efforts to progress towards a systems-level understanding of ECM biology. PMID:23419153

  9. Solute partitioning and filtration by extracellular matrices

    PubMed Central

    Hofmann, Christina L.; Ferrell, Nicholas; Schnell, Lisa; Dubnisheva, Anna; Zydney, Andrew L.; Yurchenco, Peter D.; Roy, Shuvo

    2009-01-01

    The physiology of glomerular filtration remains mechanistically obscure despite its importance in disease. The correspondence between proteinuria and foot process effacement suggests podocytes as the locus of the filtration barrier. If so, retained macromolecules ought to accumulate at the filtration barrier, an effect called concentration polarization. Literature data indicate macromolecule concentrations decrease from subendothelial to subepithelial glomerular basement membrane (GBM), as would be expected if the GBM were itself the filter. The objective of this study was to obtain insights into the possible role of the GBM in protein retention by performing fundamental experimental and theoretical studies on the properties of three model gels. Solute partitioning and filtration through thin gels of a commercially available laminin-rich extracellular matrix, Matrigel, were measured using a polydisperse polysaccharide tracer molecule, Ficoll 70. Solute partitioning into laminin gels and lens basement membrane (LBM) were measured using Ficoll 70. A novel model of a laminin gel was numerically simulated, as well as a mixed structure-random-fiber model for LBM. Experimental partitioning was predicted by numerical simulations. Sieving coefficients through thin gels of Matrigel were size dependent and strongly flux dependent. The observed flux dependence arose from compression of the gel in response to the applied pressure. Gel compression may alter solute partitioning into extracellular matrix at physiologic pressures present in the glomerular capillary. This suggests a physical mechanism coupling podocyte structure to permeability characteristics of the GBM. PMID:19587146

  10. Extracellular polymers of ozonized waste activated sludge.

    PubMed

    Liu, J C; Lee, C H; Lai, J Y; Wang, K C; Hsu, Y C; Chang, B V

    2001-01-01

    Effect of ozonation on characteristics of waste activated sludge was investigated in the current study. Concentrations of cell-bound extracellular polymers (washed ECPs) did not change much upon ozonation, whereas the sum of cell-bound and soluble extracellular polymers (unwashed ECPs) increased with increasing ozone dose. Washed ECPs in original sludge as divided by molecular weight distribution was 39% < 1,000 Da (low MW), 30% from 1,000 to 10,000 Da (medium MW), and 31% > 10,000 Da (high MW). It was observed that the low-MW fraction decreased, and the high-MW fraction increased in ozonized sludge. The unwashed ECPs were characterized as 44% in low MW, 30% in medium MW, and 26% in high MW. Both low-MW and medium-MW fractions of unwashed ECPs decreased while high-MW fraction increased in ozonized sludge. The dewaterability of ozonized sludge, assessed by capillary suction time (CST) and specific resistance to filtration (SRF), deteriorated with ozone dose. The optimal dose of cationic polyelectrolyte increased with increasing ozone dose. The production rate and the accumulated amount of methane gas of ozonized sludge were also higher.

  11. Targeting extracellular ROS signaling of tumor cells.

    PubMed

    Bauer, Georg

    2014-04-01

    Expression of membrane-associated NADPH oxidase (NOX1) represents a characteristic feature of malignant cells. NOX1-derived extracellular superoxide anions are the basis for autocrine stimulation of proliferation, but also drive the HOCl and the NO/peroxynitrite signaling pathways. This may cause the elimination of transformed cells. Tumor cells express membrane-associated catalase that efficiently protects the cells against apoptosis-inducing reactive oxygen species (ROS) signaling. Membrane-associated superoxide dismutase (SOD) plays a co-modulatory protective role that is functionally interrelated with the protective effect mediated by catalase. Due to the co-localization of NOX1, catalase and SOD on the outer membrane of tumor cells, specific inhibition of membrane-associated SOD causes superoxide anion-dependent inhibition of catalase. This establishes a strong apoptotic signaling through the NO/peroxynitrite pathway. In parallel, it causes a drastic decrease in the concentration of proliferation-stimulating H2O2. Knowledge of the biochemical network on the surface of tumor cells should, therefore, allow development of specific novel strategies for tumor therapy, based on the specific features of tumor cell-specific extracellular ROS interactions.

  12. [Glutamic acid as a universal extracellular signal].

    PubMed

    Yoneda, Yukio

    2015-08-01

    The prevailing view is that both glutamic (Glu) and gamma-aminobutyric (GABA) acids play a role as an amino acid neurotransmitter released from neurons. However, little attention has been paid to the possible expression and functionality of signaling machineries required for amino acidergic neurotransmission in cells other than central neurons. In line with our first demonstration of the presence of Glu receptors outside the brain, in this review I will outline our recent findings accumulated since then on the physiological and pathological significance of neuronal amino acids as an extracellular signal essential for homeostasis in a variety of phenotypic cells. In undifferentiated neural progenitor cells, for instance, functional expression is seen with different signaling machineries used for glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in neurons. Moreover, Glu plays a role in mechanisms underlying suppression of proliferation for self-replication in undifferentiated mesenchymal stem cells. There is more accumulating evidence for neuronal amino acids playing a role as an extracellular autocrine or paracrine signal commonly used in different phenotypic cells. Evaluation of drugs currently used could be thus beneficial for the efficient prophylaxis and/or the therapy of a variety of diseases relevant to disturbance of amino acid signaling in diverse organs.

  13. Upper threshold of extracellular neural stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Pangratz-Fuehrer, Susanne; Suh, Bongsoo; Mathieson, Keith; Naik, Natasha; Palanker, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    It is well known that spiking neurons can produce action potentials in response to extracellular stimulation above certain threshold. It is widely assumed that there is no upper limit to somatic stimulation, except for cellular or electrode damage. Here we demonstrate that there is an upper stimulation threshold, above which no action potential can be elicited, and it is below the threshold of cellular damage. Existence of this upper stimulation threshold was confirmed in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) at pulse durations ranging from 5 to 500 μs. The ratio of the upper to lower stimulation thresholds varied typically from 1.7 to 7.6, depending on pulse duration. Computational modeling of extracellular RGC stimulation explained the upper limit by sodium current reversal on the depolarized side of the cell membrane. This was further confirmed by experiments in the medium with a low concentration of sodium. The limited width of the stimulation window may have important implications in design of the electro-neural interfaces, including neural prosthetics. PMID:22993266

  14. Upper threshold of extracellular neural stimulation.

    PubMed

    Boinagrov, David; Pangratz-Fuehrer, Susanne; Suh, Bongsoo; Mathieson, Keith; Naik, Natasha; Palanker, Daniel

    2012-12-01

    It is well known that spiking neurons can produce action potentials in response to extracellular stimulation above certain threshold. It is widely assumed that there is no upper limit to somatic stimulation, except for cellular or electrode damage. Here we demonstrate that there is an upper stimulation threshold, above which no action potential can be elicited, and it is below the threshold of cellular damage. Existence of this upper stimulation threshold was confirmed in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) at pulse durations ranging from 5 to 500 μs. The ratio of the upper to lower stimulation thresholds varied typically from 1.7 to 7.6, depending on pulse duration. Computational modeling of extracellular RGC stimulation explained the upper limit by sodium current reversal on the depolarized side of the cell membrane. This was further confirmed by experiments in the medium with a low concentration of sodium. The limited width of the stimulation window may have important implications in design of the electro-neural interfaces, including neural prosthetics.

  15. Probing extracellular Sonic hedgehog in neurons.

    PubMed

    Eitan, Erez; Petralia, Ronald S; Wang, Ya-Xian; Indig, Fred E; Mattson, Mark P; Yao, Pamela J

    2016-08-15

    The bioactivity of Sonic hedgehog (Shh) depends on specific lipid modifications; a palmitate at its N-terminus and a cholesterol at its C-terminus. This dual-lipid modification makes Shh molecules lipophilic, which prevents them from diffusing freely in extracellular space. Multiple lines of evidence indicate that Shh proteins are carried by various forms of extracellular vesicles (EVs). It also has been shown, for instance, that in some tissues Shh proteins are transported to neighboring cells directly via filopodia. We have previously reported that Shh proteins are expressed in hippocampal neurons. In this study we show that, in the hippocampus and cerebellum of postnatal day (P)2 rats, Shh is mostly found near or on the membrane surface of small neurites or filopodia. We also examined cultured hippocampal neurons where we observed noticeable and widespread Shh-immunolabeled vesicles located outside neurons. Through immunoelectron microscopy and biochemical analysis, we find Shh-containing EVs with a wide range of sizes. Unlike robust Shh activity in EVs isolated from cells overexpressing an N-terminal Shh fragment construct, we did not detect measurable Shh activity in EVs purified from the medium of cultured hippocampal neurons. These results suggest the complexity of the transcellular Shh signaling mechanisms in neurons.

  16. Extracellular superoxide dismutase of boar seminal plasma.

    PubMed

    Kowalowka, M; Wysocki, P; Fraser, L; Strzezek, J

    2008-08-01

    Superoxide dismutase (SOD) is an enzymatic component of the antioxidant defense system that protects spermatozoa by catalysing the dismutation of superoxide anions to hydrogen peroxide and oxygen. Age and season effects on SOD activity in the seminal plasma were measured in boars at the onset of 8 months through a 35-month period. It was found that age-related changes in SOD activity in the seminal plasma were markedly higher in boars less than 2 years of age. However, it appeared that SOD activity was established at the early sexual maturity age (8-12 months). There were variations in SOD activity throughout the season, being significantly higher in spring and autumn than in summer. A secretory extracellular form of SOD (EC-SOD) was purified to homogeneity (350-fold) from boar seminal plasma, using a three-step purification protocol (affinity chromatography followed by ion exchange and ceramic hydroxyapatite chromatography). The molecular properties and specificity of SOD (molecular mass, isoelectric point, optimum pH, thermostability and susceptibility to inhibitors) confirmed that the purified enzyme is an extracellular form of Cu/Zn-superoxide dismutase occurring in boar seminal plasma. The results of this study indicate that EC-SOD is an important antioxidant enzyme of boar seminal plasma, which plays an important physiological role in counteracting oxidative stress in spermatozoa.

  17. How Neutrophil Extracellular Traps Become Visible

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) have been identified as a fundamental innate immune defense mechanism against different pathogens. NETs are characterized as released nuclear DNA associated with histones and granule proteins, which form an extracellular web-like structure that is able to entrap and occasionally kill certain microbes. Furthermore, NETs have been shown to contribute to several noninfectious disease conditions when released by activated neutrophils during inflammation. The identification of NETs has mainly been succeeded by various microscopy techniques, for example, immunofluorescence microscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Since the last years the development and improvement of new immunofluorescence-based techniques enabled optimized visualization and quantification of NETs. On the one hand in vitro live-cell imaging led to profound new ideas about the mechanisms involved in the formation and functionality of NETs. On the other hand different intravital, in vivo, and in situ microscopy techniques led to deeper insights into the role of NET formation during health and disease. This paper presents an overview of the main used microscopy techniques to visualize NETs and describes their advantages as well as disadvantages. PMID:27294157

  18. The International Society for Extracellular Vesicles launches the first massive open online course on extracellular vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Lässer, Cecilia; Théry, Clotilde; Buzás, Edit I.; Mathivanan, Suresh; Zhao, Weian; Gho, Yong Song; Lötvall, Jan

    2016-01-01

    The International Society for Extracellular Vesicles (ISEV) has organised its first educational online course for students and beginners in the field of extracellular vesicles (EVs). This course, “Basics of Extracellular Vesicles,” uses recorded lectures from experts in the field and will be open for an unlimited number of participants. The course is divided into 5 modules and can be accessed at www.coursera.org/learn/extracellular-vesicles. The first module is an introduction to the field covering the nomenclature and history of EVs. Module 2 focuses on the biogenesis and uptake mechanisms of EVs, as well as their RNA, protein and lipid cargo. Module 3 covers the collection and processing of cell culture media and body fluids such as blood, breast milk, cerebrospinal fluid and urine prior to isolation of EVs. Modules 4 and 5 present different isolation methods and characterisation techniques utilised in the EV field. Here, differential ultracentrifugation, size-exclusion chromatography, density gradient centrifugation, kit-based precipitation, electron microscopy, cryo-electron microscopy, flow cytometry, atomic-force microscopy and nanoparticle-tracking analysis are covered. This first massive open online course (MOOC) on EVs was launched on 15 August 2016 at the platform “Coursera” and is free of charge. PMID:27989272

  19. The International Society for Extracellular Vesicles launches the first massive open online course on extracellular vesicles.

    PubMed

    Lässer, Cecilia; Théry, Clotilde; Buzás, Edit I; Mathivanan, Suresh; Zhao, Weian; Gho, Yong Song; Lötvall, Jan

    2016-01-01

    The International Society for Extracellular Vesicles (ISEV) has organised its first educational online course for students and beginners in the field of extracellular vesicles (EVs). This course, "Basics of Extracellular Vesicles," uses recorded lectures from experts in the field and will be open for an unlimited number of participants. The course is divided into 5 modules and can be accessed at www.coursera.org/learn/extracellular-vesicles. The first module is an introduction to the field covering the nomenclature and history of EVs. Module 2 focuses on the biogenesis and uptake mechanisms of EVs, as well as their RNA, protein and lipid cargo. Module 3 covers the collection and processing of cell culture media and body fluids such as blood, breast milk, cerebrospinal fluid and urine prior to isolation of EVs. Modules 4 and 5 present different isolation methods and characterisation techniques utilised in the EV field. Here, differential ultracentrifugation, size-exclusion chromatography, density gradient centrifugation, kit-based precipitation, electron microscopy, cryo-electron microscopy, flow cytometry, atomic-force microscopy and nanoparticle-tracking analysis are covered. This first massive open online course (MOOC) on EVs was launched on 15 August 2016 at the platform "Coursera" and is free of charge.

  20. The role for neutrophil extracellular traps in cystic fibrosis autoimmunity

    PubMed Central

    Skopelja, Sladjana; Hamilton, B. JoNell; Jones, Jonathan D.; Yang, Mei-Ling; Mamula, Mark; Ashare, Alix; Gifford, Alex H.; Rigby, William F.C.

    2016-01-01

    While respiratory failure in cystic fibrosis (CF) frequently associates with chronic infection by Pseudomonas aeruginosa, no single factor predicts the extent of lung damage in CF. To elucidate other causes, we studied the autoantibody profile in CF and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients, given the similar association of airway inflammation and autoimmunity in RA. Even though we observed that bactericidal permeability-increasing protein (BPI), carbamylated proteins, and citrullinated proteins all localized to the neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), which are implicated in the development of autoimmunity, our study demonstrates striking autoantibody specificity in CF. Particularly, CF patients developed anti-BPI autoantibodies but hardly any anti-citrullinated protein autoantibodies (ACPA). In contrast, ACPA-positive RA patients exhibited no reactivity with BPI. Interestingly, anti-carbamylated protein autoantibodies (ACarPA) were found in both cohorts but did not cross-react with BPI. Contrary to ACPA and ACarPA, anti-BPI autoantibodies recognized the BPI C-terminus in the absence of posttranslational modifications. In fact, we discovered that P. aeruginosa–mediated NET formation results in BPI cleavage by P. aeruginosa elastase, which suggests a novel mechanism in the development of autoimmunity to BPI. In accordance with this model, autoantibodies associated with presence of P. aeruginosa on sputum culture. Finally, our results provide a role for autoimmunity in CF disease severity, as autoantibody levels associate with diminished lung function. PMID:27777975

  1. Substrate stiffness regulates extracellular matrix deposition by alveolar epithelial cells

    PubMed Central

    Eisenberg, Jessica L; Safi, Asmahan; Wei, Xiaoding; Espinosa, Horacio D; Budinger, GR Scott; Takawira, Desire; Hopkinson, Susan B; Jones, Jonathan CR

    2012-01-01

    Aim The aim of the study was to address whether a stiff substrate, a model for pulmonary fibrosis, is responsible for inducing changes in the phenotype of alveolar epithelial cells (AEC) in the lung, including their deposition and organization of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. Methods Freshly isolated lung AEC from male Sprague Dawley rats were seeded onto polyacrylamide gel substrates of varying stiffness and analyzed for expression and organization of adhesion, cytoskeletal, differentiation, and ECM components by Western immunoblotting and confocal immunofluorescence microscopy. Results We observed that substrate stiffness influences cell morphology and the organization of focal adhesions and the actin cytoskeleton. Surprisingly, however, we found that substrate stiffness has no influence on the differentiation of type II into type I AEC, nor does increased substrate stiffness lead to an epithelial–mesenchymal transition. In contrast, our data indicate that substrate stiffness regulates the expression of the α3 laminin subunit by AEC and the organization of both fibronectin and laminin in their ECM. Conclusions An increase in substrate stiffness leads to enhanced laminin and fibronectin assembly into fibrils, which likely contributes to the disease phenotype in the fibrotic lung. PMID:23204878

  2. Light Regimes Shape Utilization of Extracellular Organic C and N in a Cyanobacterial Biofilm

    SciTech Connect

    Stuart, Rhona K.; Mayali, Xavier; Boaro, Amy A.; Zemla, Adam; Everroad, R. Craig; Nilson, Daniel; Weber, Peter K.; Lipton, Mary; Bebout, Brad M.; Pett-Ridge, Jennifer; Thelen, Michael P.

    2016-06-28

    Although it is becoming clear that many microbial primary producers can also play a role as organic consumers, we know very little about the metabolic regulation of photoautotroph organic matter consumption. Cyanobacteria in phototrophic biofilms can reuse extracellular organic carbon, but the metabolic drivers of extracellular processes are surprisingly complex. We investigated the metabolic foundations of organic matter reuse by comparing exoproteome composition and incorporation of13C-labeled and15N-labeled cyanobacterial extracellular organic matter (EOM) in a unicyanobacterial biofilm incubated using different light regimes. In the light and the dark, cyanobacterial direct organic C assimilation accounted for 32% and 43%, respectively, of all organic C assimilation in the community. Under photosynthesis conditions, we measured increased excretion of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) and proteins involved in micronutrient transport, suggesting that requirements for micronutrients may drive EOM assimilation during daylight hours. This interpretation was supported by photosynthesis inhibition experiments, in which cyanobacteria incorporated N-rich EOM-derived material. In contrast, under dark, C-starved conditions, cyanobacteria incorporated C-rich EOM-derived organic matter, decreased excretion of EPS, and showed an increased abundance of degradative exoproteins, demonstrating the use of the extracellular domain for C storage. Sequence-structure modeling of one of these exoproteins predicted a specific hydrolytic activity that was subsequently detected, confirming increased EOM degradation in the dark. Associated heterotrophic bacteria increased in abundance and upregulated transport proteins under dark relative to light conditions. Taken together, our results indicate that biofilm cyanobacteria are successful competitors for organic C and N and that cyanobacterial nutrient and energy requirements control the use of EOM.

  3. The Pseudomonas aeruginosa extracellular secondary metabolite, Paerucumarin, chelates iron and is not localized to extracellular membrane vesicles.

    PubMed

    Qaisar, Uzma; Kruczek, Cassandra J; Azeem, Muhammed; Javaid, Nasir; Colmer-Hamood, Jane A; Hamood, Abdul N

    2016-08-01

    Proteins encoded by the Pseudomonas aeruginosa pvcA-D operon synthesize a novel isonitrile functionalized cumarin termed paerucumarin. The pvcA-D operon enhances the expression of the P. aeruginosa fimbrial chaperone/usher pathway (cup) genes and this effect is mediated through paerucumarin. Whether pvcA-D and/or paerucumarin affect the expression of other P. aeruginosa genes is not known. In this study, we examined the effect of a mutation in pvcA-D operon the global transcriptome of the P. aeruginosa strain PAO1-UW. The mutation reduced the expression of several ironcontrolled genes including pvdS, which is essential for the expression of the pyoverdine genes. Additional transcriptional studies showed that the pvcA-D operon is not regulated by iron. Exogenously added paerucumarin enhanced pyoverdine production and pvdS expression in PAO1-UW. Iron-chelation experiments revealed that purified paerucumarin chelates iron. However, exogenously added paerucumarin significantly reduced the growth of a P. aeruginosa mutant defective in pyoverdine and pyochelin production. In contrast to other secondary metabolite, Pseudomonas quinolone signal (PQS), paerucumarin is not localized to the P. aeruginosa membrane vesicles. These results suggest that paerucumarin enhances the expression of iron-controlled genes by chelating iron within the P. aeruginosa extracellular environment. Although paerucumarin chelates iron, it does not function as a siderophore. Unlike PQS, paerucumarin is not associated with the P. aeruginosa cell envelope.

  4. Extracellular RNAs: development as biomarkers of human disease

    PubMed Central

    Quinn, Joseph F.; Patel, Tushar; Wong, David; Das, Saumya; Freedman, Jane E.; Laurent, Louise C.; Carter, Bob S.; Hochberg, Fred; Keuren-Jensen, Kendall Van; Huentelman, Matt; Spetzler, Robert; Kalani, M. Yashar S.; Arango, Jorge; Adelson, P. David; Weiner, Howard L.; Gandhi, Roopali; Goilav, Beatrice; Putterman, Chaim; Saugstad, Julie A.

    2015-01-01

    Ten ongoing studies designed to test the possibility that extracellular RNAs may serve as biomarkers in human disease are described. These studies, funded by the NIH Common Fund Extracellular RNA Communication Program, examine diverse extracellular body fluids, including plasma, serum, urine and cerebrospinal fluid. The disorders studied include hepatic and gastric cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease, neurodegenerative disease, brain tumours, intracranial haemorrhage, multiple sclerosis and placental disorders. Progress to date and the plans for future studies are outlined. PMID:26320940

  5. Contrasting coloration in terrestrial mammals

    PubMed Central

    Caro, Tim

    2008-01-01

    Here I survey, collate and synthesize contrasting coloration in 5000 species of terrestrial mammals focusing on black and white pelage. After briefly reviewing alternative functional hypotheses for coloration in mammals, I examine nine colour patterns and combinations on different areas of the body and for each mammalian taxon to try to identify the most likely evolutionary drivers of contrasting coloration. Aposematism and perhaps conspecific signalling are the most consistent explanations for black and white pelage in mammals; background matching may explain white pelage. Evidence for contrasting coloration is being involved in crypsis through pattern blending, disruptive coloration or serving other functions, such as signalling dominance, lures, reducing eye glare or in temperature regulation has barely moved beyond anecdotal stages of investigation. Sexual dichromatism is limited in this taxon and its basis is unclear. Astonishingly, the functional significance of pelage coloration in most large charismatic black and white mammals that were new to science 150 years ago still remains a mystery. PMID:18990666

  6. Multiscale image contrast amplification (MUSICA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vuylsteke, Pieter; Schoeters, Emile P.

    1994-05-01

    This article presents a novel approach to the problem of detail contrast enhancement, based on multiresolution representation of the original image. The image is decomposed into a weighted sum of smooth, localized, 2D basis functions at multiple scales. Each transform coefficient represents the amount of local detail at some specific scale and at a specific position in the image. Detail contrast is enhanced by non-linear amplification of the transform coefficients. An inverse transform is then applied to the modified coefficients. This yields a uniformly contrast- enhanced image without artefacts. The MUSICA-algorithm is being applied routinely to computed radiography images of chest, skull, spine, shoulder, pelvis, extremities, and abdomen examinations, with excellent acceptance. It is useful for a wide range of applications in the medical, graphical, and industrial area.

  7. Evidence for the fusion of extracellular vesicles with/without DNA to form specific structures in fertilized chicken eggs, mice and rats.

    PubMed

    Lee, Byung-Cheon; Lee, Ho-Sung; Yun, Ju Eun; Kim, Hyun A

    2013-01-01

    With a combination of cultivation and phase-contrast and fluorescence microscopic observation, we first found that fusion of extracellular vesicles with or without membranes occurred in fertilized chicken eggs. In order to find solid evidence for fusion, we collected many fusion data from various tissues; primo vessels and pancreases of mice and pancreases and omentums of rats. Especially, by using acridine orange vital staining to demonstrate DNA and phase-contrast and fluorescence microscopy for long real-time observation, we found that many of the extracellular vesicles involved in the fusion process contained DNAs. The fusions fall into two main patterns: pattern A characterizes a fusion of less agitated extracellular vesicles without membranes. Pattern B is a fusion of vigorously vibrating extracellular vesicles in a certain membrane. Considering all data, tables, pictures and movies, we were able to show fusions of DNA extracellular vesicles without or with membranes in several tissues of three species. Interestingly, some of the fused structures share the same morphology as normal cell's in terms of overall shape, size and DNA signals in the center. Thus, in this article we first report the evidence for the fusion of extracellular vesicles with/without DNA toward a specific structure and discuss our findings by comparing with those of other pioneer's works in search for a mitosis-free alternative pathway for generating new cells.

  8. Extracellular chloride regulation of Kv2.1, contributor to the major outward Kv current in mammalian outer hair cells

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiantao; Surguchev, Alexei; Bian, Shumin; Navaratnam, Dhasakumar

    2012-01-01

    Outer hair cells (OHC) function as both receptors and effectors in providing a boost to auditory reception. Amplification is driven by the motor protein prestin, which is under anionic control. Interestingly, we now find that the major, 4-AP-sensitive, outward K+ current of the OHC (IK) is also sensitive to Cl−, although, in contrast to prestin, extracellularly. IK is inhibited by reducing extracellular Cl− levels, with a linear dependence of 0.4%/mM. Other voltage-dependent K+ (Kv) channel conductances in supporting cells, such as Hensen and Deiters' cells, are not affected by reduced extracellular Cl−. To elucidate the molecular basis of this Cl−-sensitive IK, we looked at potential molecular candidates based on Cl− sensitivity and/or similarities in kinetics. For IK, we identified three different Ca2+-independent components of IK based on the time constant of inactivation: a fast, transient outward current, a rapidly activating, slowly inactivating current (Ik1), and a slowly inactivating current (Ik2). Extracellular Cl− differentially affects these components. Because the inactivation time constants of Ik1 and Ik2 are similar to those of Kv1.5 and Kv2.1, we transiently transfected these constructs into CHO cells and found that low extracellular Cl− inhibited both channels with linear current reductions of 0.38%/mM and 0.49%/mM, respectively. We also tested heterologously expressed Slick and Slack conductances, two intracellularly Cl−-sensitive K+ channels, but found no extracellular Cl− sensitivity. The Cl− sensitivity of Kv2.1 and its robust expression within OHCs verified by single-cell RT-PCR indicate that these channels underlie the OHC's extracellular Cl− sensitivity. PMID:21940671

  9. The NIH Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium.

    PubMed

    Ainsztein, Alexandra M; Brooks, Philip J; Dugan, Vivien G; Ganguly, Aniruddha; Guo, Max; Howcroft, T Kevin; Kelley, Christine A; Kuo, Lillian S; Labosky, Patricia A; Lenzi, Rebecca; McKie, George A; Mohla, Suresh; Procaccini, Dena; Reilly, Matthew; Satterlee, John S; Srinivas, Pothur R; Church, Elizabeth Stansell; Sutherland, Margaret; Tagle, Danilo A; Tucker, Jessica M; Venkatachalam, Sundar

    2015-01-01

    The Extracellular RNA (exRNA) Communication Consortium, funded as an initiative of the NIH Common Fund, represents a consortium of investigators assembled to address the critical issues in the exRNA research arena. The overarching goal is to generate a multi-component community resource for sharing fundamental scientific discoveries, protocols, and innovative tools and technologies. The key initiatives include (a) generating a reference catalogue of exRNAs present in body fluids of normal healthy individuals that would facilitate disease diagnosis and therapies, (b) defining the fundamental principles of exRNA biogenesis, distribution, uptake, and function, as well as development of molecular tools, technologies, and imaging modalities to enable these studies,

  10. Why regenerative medicine needs an extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Prestwich, Glenn D; Healy, Kevin E

    2015-01-01

    Regenerative medicine is now coming of age. Many attempts at cell therapy have failed to show significant efficacy, and the umbrella term 'stem cell therapy' is perceived in some quarters as hype or just expensive and unnecessary medical tourism. Here we present a short editorial in three parts. First, we examine the importance of using a semisynthetic extracellular matrix (ECM) mimetic, or sECM, to deliver and retain therapeutic cells at the site of administration. Second, we describe one approach in which biophysical and biochemical properties are tailored to each tissue type, which we call "design for optimal functionality." Third, we describe an alternative approach to sECM design and implementation, called "design for simplicity," in which a deconstructed, minimalist sECM is employed and biology is allowed to perform the customization in situ. We opine that an sECM, whether minimal or instructive, is an essential contributor to improve the outcomes of cell-based therapies.

  11. Extracellular Vesicles in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

    PubMed Central

    Kadota, Tsukasa; Fujita, Yu; Yoshioka, Yusuke; Araya, Jun; Kuwano, Kazuyoshi; Ochiya, Takahiro

    2016-01-01

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by the progression of irreversible airflow limitation and is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Although several crucial mechanisms of COPD pathogenesis have been studied, the precise mechanism remains unknown. Extracellular vesicles (EVs), including exosomes, microvesicles, and apoptotic bodies, are released from almost all cell types and are recognized as novel cell–cell communication tools. They have been shown to carry and transfer a wide variety of molecules, such as microRNAs, messenger RNAs, and proteins, which are involved in physiological functions and the pathology of various diseases. Recently, EVs have attracted considerable attention in pulmonary research. In this review, we summarize the recent findings of EV-mediated COPD pathogenesis. We also discuss the potential clinical usefulness of EVs as biomarkers and therapeutic agents for the treatment of COPD. PMID:27801806

  12. Pneumococcal MSCRAMM targeting of the extracellular matrix

    PubMed Central

    Paterson, Gavin K.; Orihuela, Carlos J.

    2010-01-01

    The attachment of bacteria to host cells and tissues and their subsequent invasion and dissemination are key processes during disease pathogenesis. In this issue of Molecular Microbiology, Jensch and co-workers provide further molecular insight into these events during infection with the Gram-positive bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae. Their characterization of PavB, a bacterial surface protein with orthologues in other streptococci, shows it to bind the extracellar matrix components fibronection and plasminogen by virtue of repetitive sequences designated Streptococcal Surface Repeats (SSURE). In mice, a pavB mutant showed reduced nasopharyngeal colonisation and was attenuated in a lung infection model. As discussed here in the context of the pneumococcus, the study of PavB highlights the central role during microbal pathogenesis of targetting the extracellular matrix by so-called MSCRAMMs (microbial surface components recognizing adhesive matrix molecules). PMID:20444102

  13. The (dys)functional extracellular matrix☆

    PubMed Central

    Freedman, Benjamin R.; Bade, Nathan D.; Riggin, Corinne N.; Zhang, Sijia; Haines, Philip G.; Ong, Katy L.; Janmey, Paul A.

    2016-01-01

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) is a major component of the biomechanical environment with which cells interact, and it plays important roles in both normal development and disease progression. Mechanical and biochemical factors alter the biomechanical properties of tissues by driving cellular remodeling of the ECM. This review provides an overview of the structural, compositional, and mechanical properties of the ECM that instruct cell behaviors. Case studies are reviewed that highlight mechanotransduction in the context of two distinct tissues: tendons and the heart. Although these two tissues demonstrate differences in relative cell–ECM composition and mechanical environment, they share similar mechanisms underlying ECM dysfunction and cell mechanotransduction. Together, these topics provide a framework for a fundamental understanding of the ECM and how it may vary across normal and diseased tissues in response to mechanical and biochemical cues. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Mechanobiology. PMID:25930943

  14. Extracellular Matrices (ECM) for Tissue Repair.

    PubMed

    Polanco, Thais O; Xylas, Joanna; Lantis, John C

    2016-04-01

    Persistence of skin wounds due to underlying disease, bacterial contamination, and/or repeated trauma, causes a chronic condition where a functional extracellular matrix (ECM) cannot be established and the normal wound-healing cascade is unable to progress. These open chronic wounds leave the body susceptible to infection and present a major healthcare problem. To this end, a broad range of biologic ECM scaffolds have been developed that can provide other therapeutic options aside from traditional wound care approaches. These tissue engineered ECM scaffolds aim to facilitate the restoration of functional skin-like tissue by altering the chronic wound environment and facilitating cellular attachment, proliferation, and differentiation. This discussion will center on reviewing current ECM scaffolds and highlighting their properties and mechanism of action with respect to the clinical application in chronic, non-healing wounds.

  15. Achondrogenesis type II, abnormalities of extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Horton, W A; Machado, M A; Chou, J W; Campbell, D

    1987-09-01

    Immune and lectin histochemical and microchemical methods were employed to study growth cartilage from seven cases of achondrogenesis type II (Langer-Saldino). The normal architecture of the epiphyseal and growth plate cartilage was replaced by a morphologically heterogeneous tissue. Some areas were comprised of vascular canals surrounded by extensive fibrous tissue and enlarged cells that had the appearance and histochemical characteristics of hypertrophic chondrocytes. Other areas contained a mixture of cells ranging from small to the enlarged chondrocytes. The extracellular matrix in the latter areas was more abundant and had characteristics of both precartilage mesenchymal matrix and typical cartilage matrix; it contained types I and II collagen, cartilage proteoglycan, fibronectin, and peanut agglutinin binding glycoconjugate(s). Peptide mapping of cyanogen bromide cartilage collagen peptides revealed the presence of types I and II collagen. These observations could be explained by a defect in the biosynthesis of type II collagen or in chondrocyte differentiation.

  16. Neutrophil extracellular traps in tissue pathology.

    PubMed

    Nakazawa, Daigo; Kumar, Santosh; Desai, Jyaysi; Anders, Hans-Joachim

    2017-03-01

    Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) are innate immune systems against invading pathogens. NETs are characterized as released DNA mixed with cytoplasmic antimicrobial proteins such as myeloperoxidase, proteinase3 and neutrophil elastase. While NETs are thought to have an important role in host defense, recent work has suggested that NETs contribute to tissue injury in non-infectious disease states. Uncontrolled NET formation in autoimmune diseases, metabolic disorders, cancers and thrombotic diseases can exacerbate a disease or even be a major initiator of tissue injury. But spotting NETs in tissues is not easy. Here we review the available histopathological evidence on the presence of NETs in a variety of diseases. We discuss technical difficulties and potential sources of misinterpretation while trying to detect NETs in tissue samples.

  17. Extracellular Matrix Revisited: Roles in Tissue Engineering

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) is a heterogeneous, connective network composed of fibrous glycoproteins that coordinate in vivo to provide the physical scaffolding, mechanical stability, and biochemical cues necessary for tissue morphogenesis and homeostasis. This review highlights some of the recently raised aspects of the roles of the ECM as related to the fields of biophysics and biomedical engineering. Fundamental aspects of focus include the role of the ECM as a basic cellular structure, for novel spontaneous network formation, as an ideal scaffold in tissue engineering, and its essential contribution to cell sheet technology. As these technologies move from the laboratory to clinical practice, they are bound to shape the vast field of tissue engineering for medical transplantations. PMID:27230457

  18. Extracellular nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase, a new cancer metabokine

    PubMed Central

    Grolla, Ambra A; Travelli, Cristina

    2016-01-01

    Abstract In this review, we focus on the secreted form of nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT); extracellular NAMPT (eNAMPT), also known as pre‐B cell colony‐enhancing factor or visfatin. Although intracellular NAMPT is a key enzyme in controlling NAD metabolism, eNAMPT has been reported to function as a cytokine, with many roles in physiology and pathology. Circulating eNAMPT has been associated with several metabolic and inflammatory disorders, including cancer. Because cytokines produced in the tumour micro‐environment play an important role in cancer pathogenesis, in part by reprogramming cellular metabolism, future improvements in cancer immunotherapy will require a better understanding of the crosstalk between cytokine action and tumour biology. In this review, the knowledge of eNAMPT in cancer will be discussed, focusing on its immunometabolic function as a metabokine, its secretion, its mechanism of action and possible roles in the cancer micro‐environment. PMID:27128025

  19. Neutrophil extracellular traps in cancer progression.

    PubMed

    Cools-Lartigue, Jonathan; Spicer, Jonathan; Najmeh, Sara; Ferri, Lorenzo

    2014-11-01

    Neutrophils are being increasingly recognized as an important element in tumor progression. They have been shown to exert important effects at nearly every stage of tumor progression with a number of studies demonstrating that their presence is critical to tumor development. Novel aspects of neutrophil biology have recently been elucidated and its contribution to tumorigenesis is only beginning to be appreciated. Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) are neutrophil-derived structures composed of DNA decorated with antimicrobial peptides. They have been shown to trap and kill microorganisms, playing a critical role in host defense. However, their contribution to tumor development and metastasis has recently been demonstrated in a number of studies highlighting NETs as a potentially important therapeutic target. Here, studies implicating NETs as facilitators of tumor progression and metastasis are reviewed. In addition, potential mechanisms by which NETs may exert these effects are explored. Finally, the ability to target NETs therapeutically in human neoplastic disease is highlighted.

  20. The effects of systemically administered taurine and N-pivaloyltaurine on striatal extracellular dopamine and taurine in freely moving rats.

    PubMed

    Salimäki, J; Scriba, G; Piepponen, T P; Rautolahti, N; Ahtee, L

    2003-08-01

    The second most abundant cerebral amino acid, taurine, is widely consumed in the so-called "energy drinks". Therefore, its possible actions on the brain are of great interest. In the present experiments taurine was given intraperitoneally to rats in order to study if it can be administered systemically in large enough amounts to alter cerebral dopaminergic transmission or to induce hypothermia. In addition, the effects of subcutaneously administered lipophilic taurine analogue, N-pivaloyltaurine, were studied. The extracellular striatal taurine and dopamine concentrations were estimated using in vivo microdialysis in awake and freely moving rats, and the rectal temperatures were measured. Taurine at the total dose of 45 mmol/kg i.p. led to a maximally 8-fold increased striatal extracellular taurine concentration, induced a long-lasting hypothermia, and significantly reduced the striatal extracellular dopamine concentration. The latter effect was strengthened by co-treatment with reuptake inhibitor nomifensine. N-pivaloyltaurine (15 mmol/kg in total, s.c.) only slightly elevated the striatal extracellular taurine concentration, failed to alter the rectal temperature, and in contrast to taurine somewhat elevated the striatal extracellular dopamine concentration suggesting a different mechanism or locus of action from that of taurine. Finally, our experiments using brain microdialysis confirmed the earlier findings that taurine is slowly eliminated from the brain. The results clearly indicate that systemically given taurine enters the brain in concentrations that induce pharmacological effects.

  1. Effect of nitrogen narcosis on extracellular levels of dopamine and its metabolites in the rat striatum, using intracerebral microdialysis.

    PubMed

    Barthelemy-Requin, M; Semelin, P; Risso, J J

    1994-12-19

    In man, nitrogen narcosis is characterized by euphoria, impaired cognitive function, neuromuscular incoordination and, ultimately, loss of consciousness. Because of the motor movement disorders, we chose to study the nigrostriatal system, whose major function is to regulate the extrapyramidal nervous system. The purpose of this investigation was to monitor changes in extracellular levels of dopamine (DA), 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) and homovanillic acid (HVA) in the striatum of conscious rats, using intracerebral microdialysis. Results show a 40% decrease in extracellular DA concentration, a 59% increase in extracellular DOPAC and an increase in HVA starting with exposure to the nitrogen mixture. Thirty minutes after the beginning of the exposure, a compensation phase took place. HVA returns to its initial basal value, and levels of DOPAC and DA returned towards normal but never reached their initial values. These results contrast with those observed during the High Pressure Neurological Syndrome (HPNS, 5.1 MPa of helium pressure) in which there is a significant increase in extracellular DA. Therefore, some of the symptoms of nitrogen narcosis may be linked with the decrease in the extracellular DA levels.

  2. Monosodium urate crystals induce extracellular DNA traps in neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils but not in mononuclear cells.

    PubMed

    Schorn, Christine; Janko, Christina; Latzko, Melanie; Chaurio, Ricardo; Schett, Georg; Herrmann, Martin

    2012-01-01

    Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) are fibers of extracellular DNA released from neutrophils due to overwhelming phagocytic stimuli. The function of NETs is to trap and kill microbes to avoid spreading of potential pathogens. NETs are formed after encounter with various gram-positive and -negative bacteria but also in response to mediators causing sterile inflammation like interleukin-8 (IL-8), tumor necrosis factor (TNF), and phorbol myristate acetate (PMA). Here we show the formation of NETs (NETting) in response to monosodium urate (MSU) crystals as further model for sterile inflammation. We identified monocytes, neutrophils, and eosinophils as MSU phagocytosing cells. Basophils did not take up the crystals, instead they upregulated their activation marker CD203c after contact with MSU. Nevertheless, MSU crystals induced extracellular trap formation also in basophils, like in eosinophils and neutrophils, which phagocytose the crystals. In contrast, monocytes do not form NETs despite uptake of the MSU crystals. In contrast to the canonical stimuli like bacteria and PMA, MSU-induced NETosis was not abrogated by plasma. Our data show that MSU crystals induce extracellular DNA trap formation in all three granulocytes lineages (NETs, EETs, and BETs) but not in monocytes, and DNA externalization does not necessitate the uptake of the crystals.

  3. Extracellular Acidification Inhibits the ROS-Dependent Formation of Neutrophil Extracellular Traps

    PubMed Central

    Behnen, Martina; Möller, Sonja; Brozek, Antonia; Klinger, Matthias; Laskay, Tamás

    2017-01-01

    The inflammatory microenvironment is commonly characterized by extracellular acidosis (pH < 7.35). Sensitivity to pH, CO2 or bicarbonate concentrations allows neutrophils to react to changes in their environment and to detect inflamed areas in the tissue. One important antimicrobial effector mechanism is the production of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), which are released during a programmed reactive oxygen species (ROS)-dependent cell death, the so-called NETosis. Although several functions of neutrophils have been analyzed under acidic conditions, the effect of extracellular acidosis on NETosis remains mainly unexplored and the available experimental results are contradictory. We performed a comprehensive study with the aim to elucidate the effect of extracellular acidosis on ROS-dependent NETosis of primary human neutrophils and to identify the underlying mechanisms. The study was performed in parallel in a CO2–bicabonate-buffered culture medium, which mimics in vivo conditions, and under HEPES-buffered conditions to verify the effect of pH independent of CO2 or bicarbonate. We could clearly show that extracellular acidosis (pH 6.5, 6.0, and 5.5) and intracellular acidification inhibit the release of ROS-dependent NETs upon stimulation of neutrophils with phorbol myristate acetate and immobilized immune complexes. Moreover, our findings suggest that the diminished NET release is a consequence of reduced ROS production and diminished glycolysis of neutrophils under acidic conditions. It was suggested previously that neutrophils can sense the border of inflamed tissue by the pH gradient and that a drop in pH serves as an indicator for the progress of inflammation. Following this hypothesis, our data indicate that an acidic inflammatory environment results in inhibition of extracellular operating effector mechanisms of neutrophils such as release of ROS and NETs. This way the release of toxic components and tissue damage can be avoided. However, we

  4. Ciliary Extracellular Vesicles: Txt Msg Organelles.

    PubMed

    Wang, Juan; Barr, Maureen M

    2016-04-01

    Cilia are sensory organelles that protrude from cell surfaces to monitor the surrounding environment. In addition to its role as sensory receiver, the cilium also releases extracellular vesicles (EVs). The release of sub-micron sized EVs is a conserved form of intercellular communication used by all three kingdoms of life. These extracellular organelles play important roles in both short and long range signaling between donor and target cells and may coordinate systemic responses within an organism in normal and diseased states. EV shedding from ciliated cells and EV-cilia interactions are evolutionarily conserved phenomena, yet remarkably little is known about the relationship between the cilia and EVs and the fundamental biology of EVs. Studies in the model organisms Chlamydomonas and Caenorhabditis elegans have begun to shed light on ciliary EVs. Chlamydomonas EVs are shed from tips of flagella and are bioactive. Caenorhabditis elegans EVs are shed and released by ciliated sensory neurons in an intraflagellar transport-dependent manner. Caenorhabditis elegans EVs play a role in modulating animal-to-animal communication, and this EV bioactivity is dependent on EV cargo content. Some ciliary pathologies, or ciliopathies, are associated with abnormal EV shedding or with abnormal cilia-EV interactions. Until the 21st century, both cilia and EVs were ignored as vestigial or cellular junk. As research interest in these two organelles continues to gain momentum, we envision a new field of cell biology emerging. Here, we propose that the cilium is a dedicated organelle for EV biogenesis and EV reception. We will also discuss possible mechanisms by which EVs exert bioactivity and explain how what is learned in model organisms regarding EV biogenesis and function may provide insight to human ciliopathies.

  5. Identification of a Receptor for Extracellular Renalase

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ling; Velazquez, Heino; Chang, John; Safirstein, Robert; Desir, Gary V.

    2015-01-01

    Background An increased risk for developing essential hypertension, stroke and diabetes is associated with single nucleotide gene polymorphisms in renalase, a newly described secreted flavoprotein with oxidoreductase activity. Gene deletion causes hypertension, and aggravates acute ischemic kidney (AKI) and cardiac injury. Independent of its intrinsic enzymatic activities, extracellular renalase activates MAPK signaling and prevents acute kidney injury (AKI) in wild type (WT) mice. Therefore, we sought to identity the receptor for extracellular renalase. Methods and Results RP-220 is a previously identified, 20 amino acids long renalase peptide that is devoid of any intrinsic enzymatic activity, but it is equally effective as full-length recombinant renalase at protecting against toxic and ischemic injury. Using biotin transfer studies with RP-220 in the human proximal tubular cell line HK-2 and protein identification by mass spectrometry, we identified PMCA4b as a renalase binding protein. This previously characterized plasma membrane ATPase is involved in cell signaling and cardiac hypertrophy. Co-immunoprecipitation and co-immunolocalization confirmed protein-protein interaction between endogenous renalase and PMCA4b. Down-regulation of endogenous PMCA4b expression by siRNA transfection, or inhibition of its enzymatic activity by the specific peptide inhibitor caloxin1b each abrogated RP-220 dependent MAPK signaling and cytoprotection. In control studies, these maneuvers had no effect on epidermal growth factor mediated signaling, confirming specificity of the interaction between PMCA4b and renalase. Conclusions PMCA4b functions as a renalase receptor, and a key mediator of renalase dependent MAPK signaling. PMID:25906147

  6. Ciliary extracellular vesicles: Txt msg orgnlls

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Juan; Barr, Maureen M.

    2016-01-01

    Cilia are sensory organelles that protrude from cell surfaces to monitor the surrounding environment. In addition to its role as sensory receiver, the cilium also releases extracellular vesicles (EVs). The release of sub-micron sized EVs is a conserved form of intercellular communication used by all three kingdoms of life. These extracellular organelles play important roles in both short and long range signaling between donor and target cells and may coordinate systemic responses within an organism in normal and diseased states. EV shedding from ciliated cells and EV-cilia interactions are evolutionarily conserved phenomena, yet remarkably little is known about the relationship between the cilia and EVs and the fundamental biology of EVs. Studies in the model organisms Chlamydomonas and C. elegans have begun to shed light on ciliary EVs. Chlamydomonas EVs are shed from tips of flagella and are bioactive. C. elegans EVs are shed and released by ciliated sensory neurons in an intraflagellar transport (IFT)-dependent manner. C. elegans EVs play a role in modulating animal-to-animal communication, and this EV bioactivity is dependent on EV cargo content. Some ciliary pathologies, or ciliopathies, are associated with abnormal EV shedding or with abnormal cilia-EV interactions, suggest the cilium may be an important organelle as an EV donor or as an EV target. Until the past few decades, both cilia and EVs were ignored as vestigial or cellular junk. As research interest in these two organelles continues to gain momentum, we envision a new field of cell biology emerging. Here, we propose that the cilium is a dedicated organelle for EV biogenesis and EV reception. We will also discuss possible mechanisms by which EVs exert bioactivity and explain how what is learned in model organisms regarding EV biogenesis and function may provide insight to human ciliopathies. PMID:26983828

  7. Bioengineering Human Myocardium on Native Extracellular Matrix

    PubMed Central

    Guyette, Jacques P.; Charest, Jonathan M; Mills, Robert W; Jank, Bernhard J.; Moser, Philipp T.; Gilpin, Sarah E.; Gershlak, Joshua R.; Okamoto, Tatsuya; Gonzalez, Gabriel; Milan, David J.; Gaudette, Glenn R.; Ott, Harald C.

    2015-01-01

    Rationale More than 25 million individuals suffer from heart failure worldwide, with nearly 4,000 patients currently awaiting heart transplantation in the United States. Donor organ shortage and allograft rejection remain major limitations with only about 2,500 hearts transplanted each year. As a theoretical alternative to allotransplantation, patient-derived bioartificial myocardium could provide functional support and ultimately impact the treatment of heart failure. Objective The objective of this study is to translate previous work to human scale and clinically relevant cells, for the bioengineering of functional myocardial tissue based on the combination of human cardiac matrix and human iPS-derived cardiac myocytes. Methods and Results To provide a clinically relevant tissue scaffold, we translated perfusion-decellularization to human scale and obtained biocompatible human acellular cardiac scaffolds with preserved extracellular matrix composition, architecture, and perfusable coronary vasculature. We then repopulated this native human cardiac matrix with cardiac myocytes derived from non-transgenic human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and generated tissues of increasing three-dimensional complexity. We maintained such cardiac tissue constructs in culture for 120 days to demonstrate definitive sarcomeric structure, cell and matrix deformation, contractile force, and electrical conduction. To show that functional myocardial tissue of human scale can be built on this platform, we then partially recellularized human whole heart scaffolds with human iPSC-derived cardiac myocytes. Under biomimetic culture, the seeded constructs developed force-generating human myocardial tissue, showed electrical conductivity, left ventricular pressure development, and metabolic function. Conclusions Native cardiac extracellular matrix scaffolds maintain matrix components and structure to support the seeding and engraftment of human iPS-derived cardiac myocytes, and enable

  8. Filter based phase distortions in extracellular spikes

    PubMed Central

    Yael, Dorin

    2017-01-01

    Extracellular recordings are the primary tool for extracting neuronal spike trains in-vivo. One of the crucial pre-processing stages of this signal is the high-pass filtration used to isolate neuronal spiking activity. Filters are characterized by changes in the magnitude and phase of different frequencies. While filters are typically chosen for their effect on magnitudes, little attention has been paid to the impact of these filters on the phase of each frequency. In this study we show that in the case of nonlinear phase shifts generated by most online and offline filters, the signal is severely distorted, resulting in an alteration of the spike waveform. This distortion leads to a shape that deviates from the original waveform as a function of its constituent frequencies, and a dramatic reduction in the SNR of the waveform that disrupts spike detectability. Currently, the vast majority of articles utilizing extracellular data are subject to these distortions since most commercial and academic hardware and software utilize nonlinear phase filters. We show that this severe problem can be avoided by recording wide-band signals followed by zero phase filtering, or alternatively corrected by reversed filtering of a narrow-band filtered, and in some cases even segmented signals. Implementation of either zero phase filtering or phase correction of the nonlinear phase filtering reproduces the original spike waveforms and increases the spike detection rates while reducing the number of false negative and positive errors. This process, in turn, helps eliminate subsequent errors in downstream analyses and misinterpretations of the results. PMID:28358895

  9. Adaptation of cat motoneurons to sustained and intermittent extracellular activation.

    PubMed Central

    Spielmann, J M; Laouris, Y; Nordstrom, M A; Robinson, G A; Reinking, R M; Stuart, D G

    1993-01-01

    1. The main purpose of this study was to quantify the adaptation of spinal motoneurons to sustained and intermittent activation, using an extracellular route of stimulating current application to single test cells, in contrast to an intracellular route, as has been used previously. In addition, associations were tested between firing rate properties of the tested cells and other type (size)-related properties of these cells and their motor units. 2. Motoneurons supplying the medial gastrocnemius muscle of the deeply anaesthetized cat were stimulated for 240 s with microelectrodes which passed sustained extracellular current at 1.25 times the threshold for repetitive firing. Many cells were also tested following a rest period with intermittent 1 s current pulses (duration 600 ms) at the same relative stimulus strength. Cell discharge was assessed from the EMG of the motor unit innervated by the test neuron. The motoneurons and their motor units were assigned to four categories (i.e. types FF, FR, S and F; where F = FF + FR) based on conventional criteria. In all, twenty F (16 FF, 4 FR) and fourteen S cells were studied with sustained stimulation. Thirty of these cells (17 F, 13 S) and an additional two cells (1 F, 1 S) were studied with intermittent stimulation. 3. The mean threshold current required for sustained firing for a period of > or = 2 s was not significantly different for F and S cells. However, most of the other measured parameters of motoneuron firing differed significantly for these two cell groups. For example, at 1.25 times the threshold current for repetitive firing, the mean firing duration in response to 240 s of sustained activation was 123 +/- 88 s (+/- S.D.) for F cells vs. 233 +/- 19 s for S cells. These values were significantly longer than those from a comparable, previously reported study that employed intracellular stimulation. With intermittent stimulation, the firing durations of F and S cells were not significantly different from each

  10. Formation of Neutrophil Extracellular Traps under Low Oxygen Level

    PubMed Central

    Branitzki-Heinemann, Katja; Möllerherm, Helene; Völlger, Lena; Husein, Diab M.; de Buhr, Nicole; Blodkamp, Stefanie; Reuner, Friederike; Brogden, Graham; Naim, Hassan Y.; von Köckritz-Blickwede, Maren

    2016-01-01

    Since their discovery, neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) have been characterized as a fundamental host innate immune defense mechanism. Conversely, excessive NET-release may have a variety of detrimental consequences for the host. A fine balance between NET formation and elimination is necessary to sustain a protective effect during an infectious challenge. Our own recently published data revealed that stabilization of hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF-1α) by the iron chelating HIF-1α-agonist desferoxamine or AKB-4924 enhanced the release of phagocyte extracellular traps. Since HIF-1α is a global regulator of the cellular response to low oxygen, we hypothesized that NET formation may be similarly increased under low oxygen conditions. Hypoxia occurs in tissues during infection or inflammation, mostly due to overconsumption of oxygen by pathogens and recruited immune cells. Therefore, experiments were performed to characterize the formation of NETs under hypoxic oxygen conditions compared to normoxia. Human blood-derived neutrophils were isolated and incubated under normoxic (21%) oxygen level and compared to hypoxic (1%) conditions. Dissolved oxygen levels were monitored in the primary cell culture using a Fibox4-PSt3 measurement system. The formation of NETs was quantified by fluorescence microscopy in response to the known NET-inducer phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) or Staphylococcus (S.) aureus wild-type and a nuclease-deficient mutant. In contrast to our hypothesis, spontaneous NET formation of neutrophils incubated under hypoxia was distinctly reduced compared to control neutrophils incubated under normoxia. Furthermore, neutrophils incubated under hypoxia showed significantly reduced formation of NETs in response to PMA. Gene expression analysis revealed that mRNA level of hif-1α as well as hif-1α target genes was not altered. However, in good correlation to the decreased NET formation under hypoxia, the cholesterol content of the neutrophils

  11. A Bibliography of Contrastive Linguistics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hammer, John H.; Rice, Frank A.

    This 484-item bibliography is a revised and expanded version of William W. Gage's "Contrastive Studies in Linguistics: A Bibliographical Checklist" (CAL, 1961). Following a general section, the entries are arranged alphabetically by foreign language. The language headings are: Afrikaans, Arabic, Armenian, Azerbaijani, Bantu, Batak, Bengali,…

  12. Simultaneous density contrast is bidirectional.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hua-Chun; Baker, Curtis L; Kingdom, Frederick A A

    2016-11-01

    Simultaneous density contrast, or SDC, is the phenomenon in which the perceived density of a textured region is altered by a surround of different density (Mackay, 1973). SDC provides an experimental tool to investigate mechanisms of density coding, yet has not been systematically examined. We measured SDC with a 2AFC staircase procedure in which human observers judged which of two patterns, one with and one without a surround, appeared more dense. We used a range of surround densities varying from very sparse to very dense (0-76.8 dots/deg2), and two center test densities (6.4 and 12.8 dots/deg2). Psychometric functions were used to estimate both the points of subjective equality (PSE) and their precision. Unexpectedly we find a bidirectional SDC effect across the five observers: Not only does a denser surround reduce perceived density of the center, but a sparser surround enhances its perceived density. We also show that SDC is not mediated by either contrast-contrast or spatial-frequency contrast. Our results suggest the presence of multiple channels selective for texture density, with lateral inhibitory interactions between them.

  13. Extracellular IL-33 cytokine, but not endogenous nuclear IL-33, regulates protein expression in endothelial cells

    PubMed Central

    Gautier, Violette; Cayrol, Corinne; Farache, Dorian; Roga, Stéphane; Monsarrat, Bernard; Burlet-Schiltz, Odile; Gonzalez de Peredo, Anne; Girard, Jean-Philippe

    2016-01-01

    IL-33 is a nuclear cytokine from the IL-1 family that plays important roles in health and disease. Extracellular IL-33 activates a growing number of target cells, including group 2 innate lymphoid cells, mast cells and regulatory T cells, but it remains unclear whether intracellular nuclear IL-33 has additional functions in the nucleus. Here, we used a global proteomic approach based on high-resolution mass spectrometry to compare the extracellular and intracellular roles of IL-33 in primary human endothelial cells, a major source of IL-33 protein in human tissues. We found that exogenous extracellular IL-33 cytokine induced expression of a distinct set of proteins associated with inflammatory responses in endothelial cells. In contrast, knockdown of endogenous nuclear IL-33 expression using two independent RNA silencing strategies had no reproducible effect on the endothelial cell proteome. These results suggest that IL-33 acts as a cytokine but not as a nuclear factor regulating gene expression in endothelial cells. PMID:27694941

  14. Primary cerebral and cerebellar astrocytes display differential sensitivity to extracellular sodium with significant effects on apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Takeda, Tomohiko; Makinodan, Manabu; Fukami, Shin-ichi; Toritsuka, Michihiro; Ikawa, Daisuke; Yamashita, Yasunori; Kishimoto, Toshifumi

    2014-06-01

    Central pontine myelinolysis is one of the idiopathic or iatrogenic brain dysfunction, and the most common cause is excessively rapid correction of chronic hyponatraemia. While myelin disruption is the main pathology, as the diagnostic name indicates, a previous study has reported that astrocyte death precedes the destruction of the myelin sheath after the rapid correction of chronic low Na(+) levels, and interestingly, certain brain regions (cerebral cortex, hippocampus, etc.) are specifically damaged but not cerebellum. Here, using primary astrocyte cultures derived from rat cerebral cortex and cerebellum, we examined how extracellular Na(+) alterations affect astrocyte death and whether the response is different between the two populations of astrocytes. Twice the amount of extracellular [Na(+) ] and voltage-gated Na(+) channel opening induced substantial apoptosis in both populations of astrocytes, while, in contrast, one half [Na(+) ] prevented apoptosis in cerebellar astrocytes, in which the Na(+) -Ca(2+) exchanger, NCX2, was highly expressed but not in cerebral astrocytes. Strikingly, the rapid correction of chronic one half [Na(+) ] exposure significantly increased apoptosis in cerebellar astrocytes but not in cerebral astrocytes. These results indicate that extracellular [Na(+) ] affects astrocyte apoptosis, and the response to alterations in [Na(+) ] is dependent on the brain region from which the astrocyte is derived.

  15. Responses in the expression of extracellular proteins in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus treated with rhodomyrtone.

    PubMed

    Visutthi, Monton; Srimanote, Potjanee; Voravuthikunchai, Supayang Piyawan

    2011-12-01

    Rhodomyrtone from a medicinal plant species, Rhodomyrtus tomentosa, is a challenged effective agent against Gram-positive bacteria, especially methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The present study was undertaken to provide insight into MRSA extracellular protein expression following rhodomyrtone treatment. Secreteomic approach was performed on a representative clinical MRSA isolate exposing to subinhibitory concentration rhodomyrtone (0.174 μg/ml). The identified extracellular proteins of a response of MRSA to rhodomyrtone treated condition were both suppressed and overexpressed. Staphylococcal antigenic proteins, immunodominant antigen A (IsaA) and staphylococcal secretory antigen (SsaA) involved in cell wall hydrolysis were downregulated after the treatment. The results suggested that rhodomyrtone may interfere with WalK/WalR (YycG/YycF) system. Other enzymes such as lipase precursor and another lipase, glycerophosphoryl diester phosphodiesterase, were absent. In contrast, cytoplasmic proteins such as SpoVG and glycerol phosphate lipoteichoic acid synthase, and ribosomal proteins were found in the treated sample. Appearance of several cytoplasmic proteins in the treated culture supernatant revealed that the bacterial cell wall biosynthesis was disturbed. This finding provides a proteomic mapping of extracellular proteins after rhodomytone treatment. Extensive investigation is required for this natural compound as it has a great potency as an alternative anti-MRSA drug.

  16. Cat exposure induces both intra- and extracellular Hsp72: the role of adrenal hormones.

    PubMed

    Fleshner, Monika; Campisi, Jay; Amiri, Leila; Diamond, David M

    2004-10-01

    Heat-shock proteins (Hsp) play an important role in stress physiology. Exposure to a variety of stressors will induce intracellular Hsp72, and this induction is believed to be beneficial for cell survival. In contrast, Hsp72 released during stress (extracellular Hsp72; eHsp72) activates pro-inflammatory responses. Clearly, physical stressors such as heat, cold, H(2)O(2), intense exercise and tail shock will induce both intra- and extracellular Hsp72. The current study tested whether a psychological stressor, cat exposure, would also trigger this response. In addition, the potential role of adrenal hormones in the Hsp72 response was examined. Adult, male Sprague Dawley rats were either adrenalectomized (ADX) or sham operated. Ten days post-recovery, rats were exposed to either a cat with no physical contact or control procedures (n = 5-6/group) for 2 h. Levels of intracellular Hsp72 were measured in the brain (frontal cortex, hippocampus, hypothalamus, dorsal vagal complex) and pituitary (ELISA). Levels of eHsp72 (ELISA) and corticosterone (RIA) were measured from serum obtained at the end of the 2-h stress period. Rats that were exposed to a cat had elevated intracellular Hsp72 in hypothalamus and dorsal vagal complex, and elevated eHsp72 and corticosterone in serum. Both the intra- and extracellular Hsp72 responses were blocked or attenuated by ADX. This study demonstrates that cat exposure can stimulate the Hsp72 response and that adrenal hormones contribute to this response.

  17. A combination of mirtazapine and milnacipran augments the extracellular levels of monoamines in the rat brain.

    PubMed

    Yamauchi, Miki; Imanishi, Taiichiro; Koyama, Tsukasa

    2012-06-01

    Mirtazapine, an antidepressant, antagonizes α(2)-adrenergic autoreceptors and heteroreceptors, which leads to enhanced noradrenergic and serotonergic transmission without inhibiting monoamine transporters. Using a microdialysis technique, we investigated whether co-administration of mirtazapine and a serotonin noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor (SNRI), milnacipran, augments the effects of each drug on the extracellular levels of monoamines by pharmacological synergy. Mirtazapine increased the extracellular levels of noradrenaline and serotonin in the dorsal hippocampus. In contrast, it increased the levels of noradrenaline and dopamine without changing serotonin levels in the prefrontal cortex. Milnacipran increased the levels of all monoamines evaluated in both areas, and the combined treatment with mirtazapine augmented these changes. The combined treatment with idazoxan, an α(2) adrenoceptor antagonist, and milnacipran also increased all monoamine levels in the prefrontal cortex. Ketanserin, a serotonin 5-HT(2A) receptor antagonist, showed no effect in combination with milnacipran, while SB242084, a 5-HT(2C) receptor antagonist, augmented the effects of milnacipran on the levels of serotonin and dopamine in the prefrontal cortex. These results suggest that combined treatment with mirtazapine and milnacipran augments the extracellular levels of noradrenaline, serotonin and dopamine through the blockade of α(2) adrenoceptors without regional specificity, whereas mirtazapine enhances serotonergic transmission in a region-specific manner. 5-HT(2C) receptor antagonism may also partly contribute to the amplification effects of mirtazapine on serotonin and dopamine levels. These neurochemical changes could play a role in reported advantageous clinical effects in patients treated with an SNRI and mirtazapine.

  18. Effect of spaceflight on the extracellular matrix of skeletal muscle after a crush injury

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stauber, W. T.; Fritz, V. K.; Burkovskaia, T. E.; Il'ina-Kakueva, E. I.

    1992-01-01

    The organization and composition of the extracellular matrix were studied in the crush-injured gastrocnemius muscle of rats subjected to 0 G. After 14 days of flight on Cosmos 2044, the gastrocnemius muscle was removed and evaluated by histochemical and immunohistochemical techniques from the five injured flight rodents and various earth-based treatment groups. In general, the repair process was similar in all injured muscle samples with regard to the organization of the extracellular matrix and myofibers. Small and large myofibers were present within an expanded extracellular matrix, indicative of myogenesis and muscle regeneration. In the tail-suspended animals, a more complete repair was observed with nonenlarged area of nonmuscle cells or matrix material visible. In contrast, the muscle samples from the flight animals were less well organized and contained more macrophages and blood vessels in the repair region, indicative of a delayed repair process, but did not demonstrate any chronic inflammation. Myofiber repair did vary in muscles from the different groups, being slowest in the flight animals and most complete in the tail-suspended ones.

  19. Effects of Extracellular Calcium on Cell Membrane Resealing during Sonoporation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Yun; Cui, Jianmin; Deng, Cheri X.

    2006-05-01

    Sonoporation has been exploited as a novel strategy for intracellular drug and gene delivery. In sonoporation, ultrasound application generates transient pores or openings in the cell membrane that allow entry of extracellular agents normally not permeable to the cell membrane. In order to improve the sonoporation outcome, we seek to obtain improved understanding of the sonoporation mechanism and investigate the factors affecting sonoporation process. We established a voltage clamp technique for real time measurement of sonoporation at single cell level using Xenopus oocytes as a model system. As both cell survival and intracellular delivery efficiency of drug or genes depend on the sonoporation dynamic process, and Calcium plays important roles in cellular processes, we focus on studying of the effect of extracellular Calcium concentration on the formation, extension, and resealing of membrane pores in sonoporation. We obtained experimental results demonstrating that the cell membrane reseals in the order of seconds in the presence of physiological level of extracellular [Ca]. We measured the resealing as function of extracellular [Ca] (0-1.8mM) and observed that the resealing rate decreases as extracellular [Ca] decreases from normal physiological level. No resealing was demonstrated when 1mM EGTA was added in the extracellular medium to chelate the [Ca] extracellularly. Our experimental findings suggest that extracellular Calcium plays an important role in controlling membrane resealing in sonoporation and thus the sonoporation outcome such as cell survival and delivery efficiency.

  20. Extracellular Vesicles in Renal Diseases: More than Novel Biomarkers?

    PubMed Central

    Le, Thu H.

    2016-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles from the urine and circulation have gained significant interest as potential diagnostic biomarkers in renal diseases. Urinary extracellular vesicles contain proteins from all sections of the nephron, whereas most studied circulating extracellular vesicles are derived from platelets, immune cells, and the endothelium. In addition to their diagnostic role as markers of kidney and vascular damage, extracellular vesicles may have functional significance in renal health and disease by facilitating communication between cells and protecting against kidney injury and bacterial infection in the urinary tract. However, the current understanding of extracellular vesicles has derived mostly from studies with very small numbers of patients or in vitro data. Moreover, accurate assessment of these vesicles remains a challenge, in part because of a lack of consensus in the methodologies to measure extracellular vesicles and the inability of most techniques to capture the entire size range of these vesicles. However, newer techniques and standardized protocols to improve the detection of extracellular vesicles are in development. A clearer understanding of the composition and biology of extracellular vesicles will provide insights into their pathophysiologic, diagnostic, and therapeutic roles. PMID:26251351

  1. Extracellular taurine in the substantia nigra: taurine-glutamate interaction.

    PubMed

    García Dopico, José; Perdomo Díaz, Juan; Alonso, Teofilo Jorge; González Hernández, Tomás; Castro Fuentes, Rafael; Rodríguez Díaz, Manuel

    2004-05-15

    Taurine has been proposed as an inhibitory transmitter in the substantia nigra (SN), but the mechanisms involved in its release and uptake remain practically unexplored. We studied the extracellular pool of taurine in the rat's SN by using microdialysis methods, paying particular attention to the taurine-glutamate (GLU) interaction. Extracellular taurine increased after cell depolarization with high-K(+) in a Ca(2+)-dependent manner, being modified by the local perfusion of GLU, GLU receptor agonists, and zinc. Nigral administration of taurine increased the extracellular concentration of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and GLU, the transmitters of the two main inputs of the SN. The modification of the glial metabolism with fluocitrate and L-methionine sulfoximine also changed the extracellular concentration of taurine. The complex regulation of the extracellular pool of taurine, its interaction with GABA and GLU, and the involvement of glial cells in its regulation suggest a volume transmission role for taurine in the SN.

  2. Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial extracellular vesicles.

    PubMed

    Kim, Ji Hyun; Lee, Jaewook; Park, Jaesung; Gho, Yong Song

    2015-04-01

    Like mammalian cells, Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria release nano-sized membrane vesicles into the extracellular environment either in a constitutive manner or in a regulated manner. These bacterial extracellular vesicles are spherical bilayered proteolipids enriched with bioactive proteins, lipids, nucleic acids, and virulence factors. Recent progress in this field supports the critical pathophysiological functions of these vesicles in both bacteria-bacteria and bacteria-host interactions. This review provides an overview of the current understanding on Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial extracellular vesicles, especially regarding the biogenesis, components, and functions in poly-species communities. We hope that this review will stimulate additional research in this emerging field of bacterial extracellular vesicles and contribute to the development of extracellular vesicle-based diagnostic tools and effective vaccines against pathogenic Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria.

  3. Adapted polarization state contrast image.

    PubMed

    Richert, Michael; Orlik, Xavier; De Martino, Antonello

    2009-08-03

    We propose a general method to maximize the polarimetric contrast between an object and its background using a predetermined illumination polarization state. After a first estimation of the polarimetric properties of the scene by classical Mueller imaging, we evaluate the incident polarized field that induces scattered polarization states by the object and background, as opposite as possible on the Poincar e sphere. With a detection method optimized for a 2-channel imaging system, Monte Carlo simulations of low flux coherent imaging are performed with various objects and backgrounds having different properties of retardance, dichroism and depolarization. With respect to classical Mueller imaging, possibly associated to the polar decomposition, our results show a noticeable increase in the Bhattacharyya distance used as our contrast parameter.

  4. High-contrast imaging testbed

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, K; Silva, D; Poyneer, L; Macintosh, B; Bauman, B; Palmer, D; Remington, T; Delgadillo-Lariz, M

    2008-01-23

    Several high-contrast imaging systems are currently under construction to enable the detection of extra-solar planets. In order for these systems to achieve their objectives, however, there is considerable developmental work and testing which must take place. Given the need to perform these tests, a spatially-filtered Shack-Hartmann adaptive optics system has been assembled to evaluate new algorithms and hardware configurations which will be implemented in these future high-contrast imaging systems. In this article, construction and phase measurements of a membrane 'woofer' mirror are presented. In addition, results from closed-loop operation of the assembled testbed with static phase plates are presented. The testbed is currently being upgraded to enable operation at speeds approaching 500 hz and to enable studies of the interactions between the woofer and tweeter deformable mirrors.

  5. Monitoring stiffness contrast in elastography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiss, Miklos; Bharat, Shyam; Varghese, Tomy; Techavipoo, Udomchai; Liu, Wu

    2005-03-01

    Elastography is an imaging modality used to image tissue strains resulting from external quasi-static compression of tissue. Therefore, elastograms can be used to study variations in the stiffness of thermally coagulated regions of tissue. In this study, the variations in stiffness contrast of lesions formed by radio frequency (RF) ablation of canine liver tissue have been investigated. RF ablation was performed on in vitro canine liver tissue over a range of temperatures from 70 - 100 degrees C, and over a range of ablation times from 1 -- 8 minutes. Elastography was then performed on these samples and on normal tissue. It was expected that stiffness contrast would increase with increasing lesion temperature and ablation duration, on the basis that higher temperature and greater ablation durations lead to increased protein denaturation. This increase was seen with ablation duration, but is not obvious with ablation temperature. These and other results will be discussed.

  6. Electrofluidic systems for contrast management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rebello, Keith J.; Maranchi, Jeffrey P.; Tiffany, Jason E.; Brown, Christopher Y.; Maisano, Adam J.; Hagedon, Matthew A.; Heikenfeld, Jason C.

    2012-06-01

    Operating in dynamic lighting conditions and in greatly varying backgrounds is challenging. Current paints and state-ofthe- art passive adaptive coatings (e.g. photochromics) are not suitable for multi- environment situations. A semi-active, low power, skin is needed that can adapt its reflective properties based on the background environment to minimize contrast through the development and incorporation of suitable pigment materials. Electrofluidic skins are a reflective display technology for electronic ink and paper applications. The technology is similar to that in E Ink but makes use of MEMS based microfluidic structures, instead of simple black and white ink microcapsules dispersed in clear oil. Electrofluidic skin's low power operation and fast switching speeds (~20 ms) are an improvement over current state-ofthe- art contrast management technologies. We report on a microfluidic display which utilizes diffuse pigment dispersion inks to change the contrast of the underlying substrate from 5.8% to 100%. Voltage is applied and an electromechanical pressure is used to pull a pigment dispersion based ink from a hydrophobic coated reservoir into a hydrophobic coated surface channel. When no voltage is applied, the Young-Laplace pressure pushes the pigment dispersion ink back down into the reservoir. This allows the pixel to switch from the on and off state by balancing the two pressures. Taking a systems engineering approach from the beginning of development has enabled the technology to be integrated into larger systems.

  7. Assessment of MRI Contrast Agent Kinetics via Retro-Orbital Injection in Mice: Comparison with Tail Vein Injection

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Fang; Nojima, Masanori; Inoue, Yusuke; Ohtomo, Kuni; Kiryu, Shigeru

    2015-01-01

    It is not known whether administration of contrast agent via retro-orbital injection or the tail vein route affects the efficiency of dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Therefore, we compared the effects of retro-orbital and tail vein injection on the kinetics of the contrast agent used for MRI in mice. The same group of nine healthy female mice received contrast agent via either route. An extracellular contrast agent was infused via the tail vein and retro-orbital vein, in random order. Dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI was performed before and after administering the contrast agent. The contrast effects in the liver, kidney, lung, and myocardium were assessed. The average total times of venous puncture and mounting of the injection system were about 10 and 4 min for the tail vein and retro-orbital route, respectively. For all organs assessed, the maximum contrast ratio occurred 30 s after administration and the time course of the contrast ratio was similar with either routes. For each organ, the contrast ratios correlated strongly; the contrast ratios were similar. The retro-orbital and tail vein routes afforded similar results in terms of the kinetics of the contrast agent. The retro-orbital route can be used as a simple efficient alternative to tail vein injection for dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI of mice. PMID:26060990

  8. Human pharmacokinetics of iohexol. A new nonionic contrast medium

    SciTech Connect

    Olsson, B.; Aulie, A.; Sveen, K.; Andrew, E.

    1983-03-01

    The pharmacokinetics of iohexol, a new nonionic, water-soluble contrast medium, have been determined after intravenous injection in 20 healthy volunteers, at four different dose levels (125-500 mg I/kg). The apparent volume of distribution was 0.27 1/kg, indicating distribution in the extracellular water. The biologic half-life was 121 minutes, comparable with that of other intravascular contrast media. Iohexol was excreted completely unmetabolized in the urine, with a 100% recovery 24 hours after injection. A comparison of iohexol and chromium-51 (/sup 51/Cr)-EDTA clearances indicates that iohexol is mainly excreted by glomerular filtration. The /sup 51/Cr-EDTA clearance was the same when injected separately and concomitantly with iohexol, indicating that glomerular filtration rate is not affected by iohexol. No dose dependency was observed in the investigated parameters t1/2 alpha, t1/2 beta, Vd, ClT or ClR. Iohexol pharmacokinetics are in correspondence with previously reported data on intravascular contrast media.

  9. Alginate-coated magnetic nanoparticles for noninvasive MRI of extracellular calcium.

    PubMed

    Bar-Shir, Amnon; Avram, Liat; Yariv-Shoushan, Shani; Anaby, Debbie; Cohen, Smadar; Segev-Amzaleg, Niva; Frenkel, Dan; Sadan, Ofer; Offen, Daniel; Cohen, Yoram

    2014-07-01

    Nanoparticles (NPs) have great potential to increase the diagnostic capacity of many imaging modalities. MRI is currently regarded as the method of choice for the imaging of deep tissues, and metal ions, such as calcium ions (Ca(2+)), are essential ingredients for life. Despite the tremendous importance of Ca(2+) for the well-being of living systems, the noninvasive determination of the changes in Ca(2+) levels in general, and extracellular Ca(2+) levels in particular, in deep tissues remains a challenge. Here, we describe the preparation and contrast mechanism of a flexible easy to prepare and selective superparamagnetic iron oxide (SPIO) NPs for the noninvasive determination of changes in extracellular Ca(2+) levels using conventional MRI. We show that SPIO NPs coated with monodisperse and purified alginate, having a specific molecular weight, provide a tool to selectively determine Ca(2+) concentrations in the range of 250 µm to 2.5 mm, even in the presence of competitive ions. The alginate-coated magnetic NPs (MNPs) aggregate in the presence of Ca(2+) , which, in turn, affects the T2 relaxation of the water protons in their vicinity. The new alginate-coated SPIO NP formulations, which have no effect on cell viability for 24 h, allow the detection of Ca(2+) levels secreted from ischemic cell cultures and the qualitative examination of the change in extracellular Ca(2+) levels in vivo. These results demonstrate that alginate-coated MNPs can be used, at least qualitatively, as a platform for the noninvasive MRI determination of extracellular Ca(2+) levels in myriad in vitro and in vivo biomedical applications.

  10. Extracellular Ca2+ Is Required for Fertilization in the African Clawed Frog, Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Duray, Alexis M.; Tembo, Maiwase; Beleny, David O.; Napolitano, Marc A.; Sauer, Monica L.; Wisner, Bennett W.

    2017-01-01

    Background The necessity of extracellular Ca2+ for fertilization and early embryonic development in the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, is controversial. Ca2+ entry into X. laevis sperm is reportedly required for the acrosome reaction, yet fertilization and embryonic development have been documented to occur in high concentrations of the Ca2+ chelator BAPTA. Here we sought to resolve this controversy. Methodology/principal finding Using the appearance of cleavage furrows as an indicator of embryonic development, we found that X. laevis eggs inseminated in a solution lacking added divalent cations developed normally. By contrast, eggs inseminated in millimolar concentrations of BAPTA or EGTA failed to develop. Transferring embryos to varying solutions after sperm addition, we found that extracellular Ca2+ is specifically required for events occurring within the first 30 minutes after sperm addition, but not after. We found that the fluorescently stained sperm were not able to penetrate the envelope of eggs inseminated in high BAPTA, whereas several had penetrated the vitelline envelope of eggs inseminated without a Ca2+ chelator, or with BAPTA and saturating CaCl2. Together these results indicate that fertilization does not occur in high concentrations of Ca2+ chelators. Finally, we found that the jelly coat includes >5 mM of readily diffusible Ca2+. Conclusions/Significance Taken together, these data are consistent with requirement of extracellular Ca2+ for fertilization. Based on our findings, we hypothesize that the jelly coat surrounding the egg acts as a reserve of readily available Ca2+ ions to foster fertilization in changing extracellular milieu. PMID:28114360

  11. Immunohistochemical evidence of rapid extracellular matrix remodeling after iron-particle irradiation of mouse mammary gland

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ehrhart, E. J.; Gillette, E. L.; Barcellos-Hoff, M. H.; Chaterjee, A. (Principal Investigator)

    1996-01-01

    High-LET radiation has unique physical and biological properties compared to sparsely ionizing radiation. Recent studies demonstrate that sparsely ionizing radiation rapidly alters the pattern of extracellular matrix expression in several tissues, but little is known about the effect of heavy-ion radiation. This study investigates densely ionizing radiation-induced changes in extracellular matrix localization in the mammary glands of adult female BALB/c mice after whole-body irradiation with 0.8 Gy 600 MeV iron particles. The basement membrane and interstitial extracellular matrix proteins of the mammary gland stroma were mapped with respect to time postirradiation using immunofluorescence. Collagen III was induced in the adipose stroma within 1 day, continued to increase through day 9 and was resolved by day 14. Immunoreactive tenascin was induced in the epithelium by day 1, was evident at the epithelial-stromal interface by day 5-9 and persisted as a condensed layer beneath the basement membrane through day 14. These findings parallel similar changes induced by gamma irradiation but demonstrate different onset and chronicity. In contrast, the integrity of epithelial basement membrane, which was unaffected by sparsely ionizing radiation, was disrupted by iron-particle irradiation. Laminin immunoreactivity was mildly irregular at 1 h postirradiation and showed discontinuities and thickening from days 1 to 9. Continuity was restored by day 14. Thus high-LET radiation, like sparsely ionizing radiation, induces rapid-remodeling of the stromal extracellular matrix but also appears to alter the integrity of the epithelial basement membrane, which is an important regulator of epithelial cell proliferation and differentiation.

  12. Extracellular ice phase transitions in insects.

    PubMed

    Hawes, T C

    2014-01-01

    At temperatures below their temperature of crystallization (Tc), the extracellular body fluids of insects undergo a phase transition from liquid to solid. Insects that survive the transition to equilibrium (complete freezing of the body fluids) are designated as freeze tolerant. Although this phenomenon has been reported and described in many Insecta, current nomenclature and theory does not clearly delineate between the process of transition (freezing) and the final solid phase itself (the frozen state). Thus freeze tolerant insects are currently, by convention, described in terms of the temperature at which the crystallization of their body fluids is initiated, Tc. In fact, the correct descriptor for insects that tolerate freezing is the temperature of equilibrium freezing, Tef. The process of freezing is itself a separate physical event with unique physiological stresses that are associated with ice growth. Correspondingly there are a number of insects whose physiological cryo-limits are very specifically delineated by this transitional envelope. The distinction also has considerable significance for our understanding of insect cryobiology: firstly, because the ability to manage endogenous ice growth is a fundamental segregator of cryotype; and secondly, because our understanding of internal ice management is still largely nascent.

  13. Extracellular enzymatic activity of Microsporum canis isolates.

    PubMed

    Papini, R; Mancianti, F

    The enzymatic activity of 70 feline and canine Microsporum canis isolates was determined by the Api-Zym test. The liquid phase of cultures, inoculated into Tryptic Soy Broth, was used to examine 19 enzymes. Considerable differences were observed among the extracellular enzymatic patterns. All the isolates produced alkaline phosphatase and beta-glucosidase, while lipase (C14), trypsin, chymotrypsin, beta-glucuronidase, and alpha-fucosidase activity was never revealed. Esterase (C4) activity was present in 57 samples (81%), esterase lipase (C8) in 31 (44%), leucine arylamidase in 35 (50%), valine arylamidase and cystine arylamidase in 7 (10%), acid phosphatase in 64 (91%), naphthol-AS-BI-phosphohydrolase in 60 (86%), alpha-galactosidase in 5 (7%), beta-galactosidase in 6 (8%), alpha-glucosidase in 25 (36%), N-acetyl-beta-glucosaminidase in 41 (58%), and alpha-mannosidase in 51 (73%). The beta-galactosidase activity of M. canis has not been reported previously. Remarkable variations of intensity for each enzymatic activity were also detected. It is believed that these results could provide basic data for further investigations on the pathogenic role of enzymes secreted by M. canis.

  14. Extracellular Matrix, a Hard Player in Angiogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Mongiat, Maurizio; Andreuzzi, Eva; Tarticchio, Giulia; Paulitti, Alice

    2016-01-01

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) is a complex network of proteins, glycoproteins, proteoglycans, and polysaccharides. Through multiple interactions with each other and the cell surface receptors, not only the ECM determines the physical and mechanical properties of the tissues, but also profoundly influences cell behavior and many physiological and pathological processes. One of the functions that have been extensively explored is its impingement on angiogenesis. The strong impact of the ECM in this context is both direct and indirect by virtue of its ability to interact and/or store several growth factors and cytokines. The aim of this review is to provide some examples of the complex molecular mechanisms that are elicited by these molecules in promoting or weakening the angiogenic processes. The scenario is intricate, since matrix remodeling often generates fragments displaying opposite effects compared to those exerted by the whole molecules. Thus, the balance will tilt towards angiogenesis or angiostasis depending on the relative expression of pro- or anti-angiogenetic molecules/fragments composing the matrix of a given tissue. One of the vital aspects of this field of research is that, for its endogenous nature, the ECM can be viewed as a reservoir to draw from for the development of new more efficacious therapies to treat angiogenesis-dependent pathologies. PMID:27809279

  15. Extracellular proteases from eight psychrotolerant Antarctic strains.

    PubMed

    Vazquez, Susana C; Coria, Silvia H; MacCormack, Walter P

    2004-01-01

    Extracellular proteases from 8 Antarctic psychrotolerant Pseudomonas sp. strains were purified and characterised. All of them are neutral metalloproteases, have an apparent molecular mass of 45kDa, optimal activity at 40 degrees C and pH 7-9, retaining significant activity at pH 5-11. With the exception of P96-18, which is less stable, all retain more than 50% activity after 3 h of incubation at pH 5-9 and show low thermal stability (their half-life times range from 20 to 60 min at 40 degrees C and less than 5 min at 50 degrees C). These proteases can be used in commercial processes carried out at neutral pH and moderate temperatures, and are of special interest for their application in mixtures of enzymes where final thermal selective inactivation is needed. Results also highlight the relevance of Antarctic biotopes for the isolation of protease-producing enzymes active at low temperatures.

  16. Extracellular proton release by stimulated neutrophils

    SciTech Connect

    van Zwieten, R.; Wever, R.; Hamers, M.N.; Weening, R.S.; Roos, D.

    1981-07-01

    We have tried to elucidate the mechanism of phagosome acidification in human neutrophils. Assuming that phenomena occurring at the plasma membrane reflect reactions in the phagocytic vacuoles, we have stimulated human neutrophils with agents that induce a ''respiratory burst,'' and we have measured the release of protons into the extracellular medium. Phorbol myristate acetate, N-formyl-methionyl-leucyl-phenylalanine and serum-opsonized zymosan particles each caused a rapid release of protons, concomitant with the increase in oxygen consumption. The stimulated release of protons was strictly coupled to the increase respiration of the cells, because inhibition of the respiration of either anaerobiosis, chlorpromazine, or glycolytic inhibitors also inhibited the release of protons. Also, in the presence of the above-mentioned stimulating agents, neutrophils from three patients with chronic granulomatous disease enhanced neither respiration not proton release. In normal cells, the ratio of deltaH+/-deltaO2 was 1.04 +/- 0.19 (mean +/ SD, n . 13). The mechanism of this proton release is not clear. The amount of lactic and carbonic acid produced by stimulated neutrophils was inadequate to explain the amount of protons released. Perhydroxyl radicals were also ruled out as the source of the protons. Because the cells did not release measurable amounts of phosphate ions, a phosphate-hydroxyl-ion antiport was also excluded. Finally, the lack of any effect of uncouplers renders it unlikely that a respiration-driven proton gradient is built up across the plasma membrane.

  17. Mechanics of composite cytoskeletal and extracellular networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Das, Moumita

    2014-03-01

    Living cells sense and respond to mechanical forces in their surroundings. This mechanical response is mainly due to the cell cytoskeleton, and its interaction with the extracellular matrix (ECM). The cell cytoskeleton is a composite polymeric scaffold made of many different types of protein filaments and crosslinking proteins. Two major filament systems in the cytoskeleton are actin filaments (F-actin) and microtubules (MTs). Actin filaments are semiflexible, while the much stiffer MTs behave as rigid rods. I shall discuss theories that help understand how the direct coupling to the surrounding F-actin matrix allows intracellular MTs to bear large compressive forces and controls the range of force transmission along the MTs, and how the MTs not only enhance the stiffness of the cell cytoskeleton, but can also dramatically endow an initially nearly incompressible F-actin matrix with enhanced compressibility relative to its shear compliance. A second source of compositeness in the cytoskeleton is the presences of different types of crosslinkers that can interact cooperatively leading to enhanced mechanical rigidity and tunable response. Like the cytoskeleton, the ECM is also a polymeric composite. It is primarily composed of a mesh of fibrous proteins, mainly stiff collagen filaments, and a comparatively flexible gel of proteoglycans and hyaluronan. I shall discuss a model that shows how the interplay between the collagen network and the background elastic gel leads to a mechanically robust ECM.

  18. Tetraspanins in extracellular vesicle formation and function.

    PubMed

    Andreu, Zoraida; Yáñez-Mó, María

    2014-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) represent a novel mechanism of intercellular communication as vehicles for intercellular transfer of functional membrane and cytosolic proteins, lipids, and RNAs. Microvesicles, ectosomes, shedding vesicles, microparticles, and exosomes are the most common terms to refer to the different kinds of EVs based on their origin, composition, size, and density. Exosomes have an endosomal origin and are released by many different cell types, participating in different physiological and/or pathological processes. Depending on their origin, they can alter the fate of recipient cells according to the information transferred. In the last two decades, EVs have become the focus of many studies because of their putative use as non-invasive biomarkers and their potential in bioengineering and clinical applications. In order to exploit this ability of EVs many aspects of their biology should be deciphered. Here, we review the mechanisms involved in EV biogenesis, assembly, recruitment of selected proteins, and genetic material as well as the uptake mechanisms by target cells in an effort to understand EV functions and their utility in clinical applications. In these contexts, the role of proteins from the tetraspanin superfamily, which are among the most abundant membrane proteins of EVs, will be highlighted.

  19. Getting to know the extracellular vesicle glycome.

    PubMed

    Gerlach, Jared Q; Griffin, Matthew D

    2016-04-01

    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are a diverse population of complex biological particles with diameters ranging from approximately 20 to 1000 nm. Tremendous interest in EVs has been generated following a number of recent, high-profile reports describing their potential utility in diagnostic, prognostic, drug delivery, and therapeutic roles. Subpopulations, such as exosomes, are now known to directly participate in cell-cell communication and direct material transfer. Glycomics, the 'omic' portion of the glycobiology field, has only begun to catalog the surface oligosaccharide and polysaccharide structures and also the carbohydrate-binding proteins found on and inside EVs. The EV glycome undoubtedly contains vital clues essential to better understanding the function, biogenesis, release and transfer of vesicles, however getting at this information is technically challenging and made even more so because of the small physical size of the vesicles and the typically minute yield from physiological-scale biological samples. Vesicle micro-heterogeneity which may be related to specific vesicle origins and functions presents a further challenge. A number of primary studies carried out over the past decade have turned up specific and valuable clues regarding the composition and roles of glycan structures and also glycan binding proteins involved EV biogenesis and transfer. This review explores some of the major EV glycobiological research carried out to date and discusses the potential implications of these findings across the life sciences.

  20. The NIH Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium

    PubMed Central

    Ainsztein, Alexandra M.; Brooks, Philip J.; Dugan, Vivien G.; Ganguly, Aniruddha; Guo, Max; Howcroft, T. Kevin; Kelley, Christine A.; Kuo, Lillian S.; Labosky, Patricia A.; Lenzi, Rebecca; McKie, George A.; Mohla, Suresh; Procaccini, Dena; Reilly, Matthew; Satterlee, John S.; Srinivas, Pothur R.; Church, Elizabeth Stansell; Sutherland, Margaret; Tagle, Danilo A.; Tucker, Jessica M.; Venkatachalam, Sundar

    2015-01-01

    The Extracellular RNA (exRNA) Communication Consortium, funded as an initiative of the NIH Common Fund, represents a consortium of investigators assembled to address the critical issues in the exRNA research arena. The overarching goal is to generate a multi-component community resource for sharing fundamental scientific discoveries, protocols, and innovative tools and technologies. The key initiatives include (a) generating a reference catalogue of exRNAs present in body fluids of normal healthy individuals that would facilitate disease diagnosis and therapies, (b) defining the fundamental principles of exRNA biogenesis, distribution, uptake, and function, as well as development of molecular tools, technologies, and imaging modalities to enable these studies, (c) identifying exRNA biomarkers of disease, (d) demonstrating clinical utility of exRNAs as therapeutic agents and developing scalable technologies required for these studies, and (e) developing a community resource, the exRNA Atlas, to provide the scientific community access to exRNA data, standardized exRNA protocols, and other useful tools and technologies generated by funded investigators. PMID:26320938

  1. Extracellular matrix components in peripheral nerve regeneration.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Perez, Francisco; Udina, Esther; Navarro, Xavier

    2013-01-01

    Injured axons of the peripheral nerve are able to regenerate and, eventually, reinnervate target organs. However, functional recovery is usually poor after severe nerve injuries. The switch of Schwann cells to a proliferative state, secretion of trophic factors, and the presence of extracellular matrix (ECM) molecules (such as collagen, laminin, or fibronectin) in the distal stump are key elements to create a permissive environment for axons to grow. In this review, we focus attention on the ECM components and their tropic role in axonal regeneration. These components can also be used as molecular cues to guide the axons through artificial nerve guides in attempts to better mimic the natural environment found in a degenerating nerve. Most used scaffolds tested are based on natural molecules that form the ECM, but use of synthetic polymers and functionalization of hydrogels are bringing new options. Progress in tissue engineering will eventually lead to the design of composite artificial nerve grafts that may replace the use of autologous nerve grafts to sustain regeneration over long gaps.

  2. Vascular Extracellular Matrix and Arterial Mechanics

    PubMed Central

    WAGENSEIL, JESSICA E.; MECHAM, ROBERT P.

    2009-01-01

    An important factor in the transition from an open to a closed circulatory system was a change in vessel wall structure and composition that enabled the large arteries to store and release energy during the cardiac cycle. The component of the arterial wall in vertebrates that accounts for these properties is the elastic fiber network organized by medial smooth muscle. Beginning with the onset of pulsatile blood flow in the developing aorta, smooth muscle cells in the vessel wall produce a complex extracellular matrix (ECM) that will ultimately define the mechanical properties that are critical for proper function of the adult vascular system. This review discusses the structural ECM proteins in the vertebrate aortic wall and will explore how the choice of ECM components has changed through evolution as the cardiovascular system became more advanced and pulse pressure increased. By correlating vessel mechanics with physiological blood pressure across animal species and in mice with altered vessel compliance, we show that cardiac and vascular development are physiologically coupled, and we provide evidence for a universal elastic modulus that controls the parameters of ECM deposition in vessel wall development. We also discuss mechanical models that can be used to design better tissue-engineered vessels and to test the efficacy of clinical treatments. PMID:19584318

  3. Extracellular matrix, supramolecular organisation and shape.

    PubMed Central

    Scott, J E

    1995-01-01

    Connective tissue function is defined as the formation and maintenance of shape, without which centralised physiologies (circulatory, digestive or nervous) could not have evolved. Two elements, inextensible (collagenous) fibrils and compression-resistant interfibrillar soluble polymers (proteoglycans), cope with all usual stresses. Relationships between the two are highly specific, as demonstrated by electron histochemistry based on Cupromeronic blue and critical electrolyte concentration (CEC) methodologies. Recent ideas on (1) the protofibrillar or modular structure of collagen fibrils, (2) the nature of specific binding sites for proteoglycans on fibrils, and (3) fundamental similarities in secondary and tertiary structures of the glycosaminoglycans (hyaluronan, chondroitin, keratan and dermatan sulphates) are described. They have greatly illuminated the study of extracellular matrix structure and function in normal, pathological (osteogenesis imperfecta) and ageing tissues. The small proteoglycans are proposed to be tissue organisers, orienting and ordering the collagen fibrils--thus shaping the tissue at a molecular and ultimately macro level. These interfibrillar structures are based on their bifunctional character, the protein parts binding to collagen fibrils at specific sites and the glycosaminoglycans duplexing and aggregating to hold the proteins and hence the collagen fibrils at defined distances from each other, rather like yardsticks. Examples of the way these functions work in specific tissues are drawn from the cornea and vitreous humour of the eye and developing tendon. Images Fig. 3 (cont.) Fig. 3 PMID:7591990

  4. Extracellular alkaline proteinase of Colletotrichum gloeosporioides.

    PubMed

    Dunaevsky, Ya E; Matveeva, A R; Beliakova, G A; Domash, V I; Belozersky, M A

    2007-03-01

    The main proteinase of the filamentous fungus Colletotrichum gloeosporioides causing anthracnoses and serious problems for production and storage of agricultural products has molecular mass of 57 kD and was purified more than 200-fold to homogeneity with the yield of 5%. Maximal activity of the proteinase is at pH 9.0-10.0, and the enzyme is stable at pH 6.0-11.5 (residual activity not less than 70%). The studied enzyme completely kept its activity to 55 degrees C, with a temperature optimum of 45 degrees C. The purified C. gloeosporioides proteinase is stable at alkaline pH values, but rapidly loses its activity at pH values lower than 5.0. Addition of bovine serum albumin stabilizes the enzyme under acidic conditions. Data on inhibitor analysis and substrate specificity of the enzyme allow its classification as a serine proteinase of subtilisin family. It is demonstrated that the extracellular proteinase of C. gloeosporioides specifically effects plant cell wall proteins. It is proposed that the studied proteinase--via hydrolysis of cell wall--provides for penetration of the fungus into the tissues of the host plant.

  5. Protein Dynamics in the Plant Extracellular Space

    PubMed Central

    Guerra-Guimarães, Leonor; Pinheiro, Carla; Chaves, Inês; Barros, Danielle R.; Ricardo, Cândido P.

    2016-01-01

    The extracellular space (ECS or apoplast) is the plant cell compartment external to the plasma membrane, which includes the cell walls, the intercellular space and the apoplastic fluid (APF). The present review is focused on APF proteomics papers and intends to draw information on the metabolic processes occurring in the ECS under abiotic and biotic stresses, as well as under non-challenged conditions. The large majority of the proteins detected are involved in “cell wall organization and biogenesis”, “response to stimulus” and “protein metabolism”. It becomes apparent that some proteins are always detected, irrespective of the experimental conditions, although with different relative contribution. This fact suggests that non-challenged plants have intrinsic constitutive metabolic processes of stress/defense in the ECS. In addition to the multiple functions ascribed to the ECS proteins, should be considered the interactions established between themselves and with the plasma membrane and its components. These interactions are crucial in connecting exterior and interior of the cell, and even simple protein actions in the ECS can have profound effects on plant performance. The proteins of the ECS are permanently contributing to the high dynamic nature of this plant compartment, which seems fundamental to plant development and adaptation to the environmental conditions. PMID:28248232

  6. Characterization of Alternaria infectoria extracellular vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Branca M.A.; Prados-Rosales, Rafael; Espadas-Moreno, Javier; Wolf, Julie M.; Luque-Garcia, Jose L.; Gonçalves, Teresa; Casadevall, Arturo

    2015-01-01

    Many fungi use membrane vesicles to transport complex molecules across their cell walls. Like mammalian exosomes, fungal vesicles contain lipids, proteins, and polysaccharides, many of which are associated with virulence. Here we identify and characterize extracellular vesicles (EVs) in Alternaria infectoria, a ubiquitous, environmental filamentous fungus that is also an opportunistic human pathogen. Examination of the A. infectoria EVs revealed a morphology similar to that of vesicles described in other fungal species. Of note, proteomic analysis detected a reduced number of vesicle-associated proteins. There were two prevalent categories among the 20 identified proteins, including the polysaccharide metabolism group, probably related to plant host invasion or biosynthesis/degradation of cell wall components, and the nuclear proteins, especially DNA repair enzymes. We also found enzymes related to pigment synthesis, adhesion to the host cell, and trafficking of vesicles/organelles/molecules. This is the first time EV secretions have been identified in a filamentous fungus. We believe that these vesicles might have a role in virulence. PMID:24576997

  7. Extracellular Vesicles and Autophagy in Osteoarthritis

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Weimin; Chen, Mingxue; Huang, Jingxiang; Yuan, Zhiguo; Zhang, Yu; Wang, Mingjie; Li, Penghao; Wang, Aiyuan; Wang, Yu; Sui, Xiang; Zhang, Li; Xu, Wenjing; Lu, Shibi

    2016-01-01

    Osteoarthritis (OA) is a type of chronic joint disease that is characterized by the degeneration and loss of articular cartilage and hyperplasia of the synovium and subchondral bone. There is reasonable knowledge about articular cartilage physiology, biochemistry, and chondrocyte metabolism. However, the etiology and pathogenesis of OA remain unclear and need urgent clarification to guide the early diagnosis and treatment of OA. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are small membrane-linking particles that are released from cells. In recent decades, several special biological properties have been found in EV, especially in terms of cartilage. Autophagy plays a critical role in the regulation of cellular homeostasis. Likewise, more and more research has gradually focused on the effect of autophagy on chondrocyte proliferation and function in OA. The synthesis and release of EV are closely associated with autophagy. At the same time, both EV and autophagy play a role in OA development. Based on the mechanism of EV and autophagy in OA development, EV may be beneficial in the early diagnosis of OA; on the other hand, the combination of EV and autophagy-related regulatory drugs may provide insight into possible OA therapeutic strategies. PMID:28078284

  8. Relevance of extracellular DNA in rhizosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pietramellara, Giacomo; Ascher, Judith; Baraniya, Divyashri; Arfaioli, Paola; Ceccherini, Maria Teresa; Hawes, Martha

    2013-04-01

    One of the most promising areas for future development is the manipulation of the rhizosphere to produce sustainable and efficient agriculture production systems. Using Omics approaches, to define the distinctive features of eDNA systems and structures, will facilitate progress in rhizo-enforcement and biocontrol studies. The relevance of these studies results clear when we consider the plethora of ecological functions in which eDNA is involved. This fraction can be actively extruded by living cells or discharged during cellular lysis and may exert a key role in the stability and variability of the soil bacterial genome, resulting also a source of nitrogen and phosphorus for plants due to the root's capacity to directly uptake short DNA fragments. The adhesive properties of the DNA molecule confer to eDNA the capacity to inhibit or kill pathogenic bacteria by cation limitation induction, and to facilitate formation of biofilm and extracellular traps (ETs), that may protect microorganisms inhabiting biofilm and plant roots against pathogens and allelopathic substances. The ETs are actively extruded by root border cells when they are dispersed in the rhizosphere, conferring to plants the capacity to extend an endogenous pathogen defence system outside the organism. Moreover, eDNA could be involved in rhizoremediation in heavy metal polluted soil acting as a bioflotation reagent.

  9. Protein Dynamics in the Plant Extracellular Space.

    PubMed

    Guerra-Guimarães, Leonor; Pinheiro, Carla; Chaves, Inês; Barros, Danielle R; Ricardo, Cândido P

    2016-07-13

    The extracellular space (ECS or apoplast) is the plant cell compartment external to the plasma membrane, which includes the cell walls, the intercellular space and the apoplastic fluid (APF). The present review is focused on APF proteomics papers and intends to draw information on the metabolic processes occurring in the ECS under abiotic and biotic stresses, as well as under non-challenged conditions. The large majority of the proteins detected are involved in "cell wall organization and biogenesis", "response to stimulus" and "protein metabolism". It becomes apparent that some proteins are always detected, irrespective of the experimental conditions, although with different relative contribution. This fact suggests that non-challenged plants have intrinsic constitutive metabolic processes of stress/defense in the ECS. In addition to the multiple functions ascribed to the ECS proteins, should be considered the interactions established between themselves and with the plasma membrane and its components. These interactions are crucial in connecting exterior and interior of the cell, and even simple protein actions in the ECS can have profound effects on plant performance. The proteins of the ECS are permanently contributing to the high dynamic nature of this plant compartment, which seems fundamental to plant development and adaptation to the environmental conditions.

  10. Crosstalk between glia, extracellular matrix and neurons.

    PubMed

    Song, Inseon; Dityatev, Alexander

    2017-03-08

    Extracellular matrix (ECM) molecules in the central nervous system form highly organized ECM structures around cell somata, axon initial segments, and synapses and play prominent roles in early development by guiding cell migration, neurite outgrowth and synaptogenesis, and by regulating closure of the critical period of development, synaptic plasticity and stability, cognitive flexibility, and axonal regeneration in adults. Major components of neural ECM, including chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs), tenascin-R and hyaluronic acid, are synthesized by both neurons and glial cells. The expression of these molecules is dynamically regulated during brain development in physiological conditions, shaping both neuronal and glial functions through multitude of molecular mechanisms. Upregulation of particular CSPGs and other ECM molecules, in particular by reactive astrocytes, after CNS injuries, during aging, neuroinflammation, and neurodegeneration on the one hand results in formation of growth-impermissive environment and impaired synaptic plasticity. On the other hand, ECM appeared to have a neuroprotective effect, at least in the form of perineuronal nets. CSPGs-degrading matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and several members of the disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs (ADAMTS) family of proteases are secreted by neurons and glia and may drive neural ECM remodeling in physiological conditions as well as after brain injury and other brain disorders. Thus, targeting expression of specific ECM molecules, associated glycans and degrading enzymes may lead to development of new therapeutic strategies promoting regeneration and synaptic plasticity.

  11. Extracellular matrix mechanics in lung parenchymal diseases.

    PubMed

    Suki, Béla; Bates, Jason H T

    2008-11-30

    In this review, we examine how the extracellular matrix (ECM) of the lung contributes to the overall mechanical properties of the parenchyma, and how these properties change in disease. The connective tissues of the lung are composed of cells and ECM, which includes a variety of biological macromolecules and water. The macromolecules that are most important in determining the mechanical properties of the ECM are collagen, elastin, and proteoglycans. We first discuss the various components of the ECM and how their architectural organization gives rise to the mechanical properties of the parenchyma. Next, we examine how mechanical forces can affect the physiological functioning of the lung parenchyma. Collagen plays an especially important role in determining the homeostasis and cellular responses to injury because it is the most important load-bearing component of the parenchyma. We then demonstrate how the concept of percolation can be used to link microscopic pathologic alterations in the parenchyma to clinically measurable lung function during the progression of emphysema and fibrosis. Finally, we speculate about the possibility of using targeted tissue engineering to optimize treatment of these two major lung diseases.

  12. Extracellular Enzyme Production and Synthetic Lignin Mineralization by Ceriporiopsis subvermispora

    PubMed Central

    Rüttimann-Johnson, Carmen; Salas, Loreto; Vicuña, Rafael; Kirk, T. Kent

    1993-01-01

    The ability of the white rot fungus Ceriporiopsis subvermispora to mineralize 14C-synthetic lignin was studied under different culture conditions, and the levels of two extracellular enzymes were monitored. The highest mineralization rates (28% after 28 days) were obtained in cultures containing a growth-limiting amount of nitrogen source (1.0 mM ammonium tartrate); under this condition, the levels of manganese peroxidase (MnP) and laccase present in the culture supernatant solutions were very low compared with cultures containing 10 mM of the nitrogen source. In contrast, cultures containing a limiting concentration of the carbon source (0.1% glucose) showed low levels of both enzymes and also very low mineralization rates compared with cultures containing 1% glucose. Cultures containing 11 ppm of Mn(II) showed a higher rate of mineralization than those containing 0.3 or 40 ppm of this cation. Levels of MnP and laccase were higher when 40 ppm of Mn(II) was used. Mineralization rates were slightly higher in cultures flushed daily with oxygen, whereas laccase levels were lower and MnP levels were approximately the same as in cultures maintained under an air atmosphere. The presence of 0.4 mM veratryl alcohol reduced both mineralization rates and MnP levels, without affecting laccase levels. Lignin peroxidase activity was not detected under any condition. Addition of purified lignin peroxidase to the cultures in the presence or absence of veratryl alcohol did not enhance mineralization rates significantly. PMID:16348955

  13. Extracellular disulfide bridges serve different purposes in two homologous chemokine receptors, CCR1 and CCR5.

    PubMed

    Rummel, Pia C; Thiele, Stefanie; Hansen, Lærke S; Petersen, Trine P; Sparre-Ulrich, Alexander H; Ulven, Trond; Rosenkilde, Mette M

    2013-09-01

    In addition to the 7 transmembrane receptor (7TM)-conserved disulfide bridge between transmembrane (TM) helix 3 and extracellular loop (ECL)-2, chemokine receptors (CCR) contain a disulfide bridge between the N terminus and what previously was believed to be ECL-3. Recent crystal and NMR structures of the CXC chemokine receptors (CXCR) CXCR4 and CXCR1, combined with structural analysis of all endogenous chemokine receptors indicate that this chemokine receptor-conserved bridge in fact connects the N terminus to the top of TM-7. By employing chemokine ligands that mainly target extracellular receptor regions and small-molecule ligands that predominantly interact with residues in the main binding crevice, we show that the 7TM-conserved bridge is essential for all types of ligand-mediated activation, whereas the chemokine-conserved bridge is dispensable for small-molecule activation in CCR1. However, in striking contrast to previous studies in other chemokine receptors, high-affinity CCL3 chemokine binding was maintained in the absence of either bridge. In the highly related CCR5, a completely different dependency was observed as neither activation nor binding of the same chemokines was retained in the absence of either bridge. In contrast, both bridges were dispensable for activation by the same small molecules. This indicates that CCR5 activity is independent of extracellular regions, whereas in CCR1 the preserved folding of ECL-2 is necessary for activation. These results indicate that conserved structural features in a receptor subgroup do not necessarily provide specific traits for the whole subgroup but rather provide unique traits to the single receptors.

  14. The extracellular nuclease Dns and its role in natural transformation of Vibrio cholerae.

    PubMed

    Blokesch, Melanie; Schoolnik, Gary K

    2008-11-01

    Free extracellular DNA is abundant in many aquatic environments. While much of this DNA will be degraded by nucleases secreted by the surrounding microbial community, some is available as transforming material that can be taken up by naturally competent bacteria. One such species is Vibrio cholerae, an autochthonous member of estuarine, riverine, and marine habitats and the causative agent of cholera, whose competence program is induced after colonization of chitin surfaces. In this study, we investigate how Vibrio cholerae's two extracellular nucleases, Xds and Dns, influence its natural transformability. We show that in the absence of Dns, transformation frequencies are significantly higher than in its presence. During growth on a chitin surface, an increase in transformation efficiency was found to correspond in time with increasing cell density and the repression of dns expression by the quorum-sensing regulator HapR. In contrast, at low cell density, the absence of HapR relieves dns repression, leading to the degradation of free DNA and to the abrogation of the transformation phenotype. Thus, as cell density increases, Vibrio cholerae undergoes a switch from nuclease-mediated degradation of extracellular DNA to the uptake of DNA by bacteria induced to a state of competence by chitin. Taken together, these results suggest the following model: nuclease production by low-density populations of V. cholerae might foster rapid growth by providing a source of nucleotides for the repletion of nucleotide pools. In contrast, the termination of nuclease production by static, high-density populations allows the uptake of intact DNA and coincides with a phase of potential genome diversification.

  15. Mechanisms of contrast agent destruction.

    PubMed

    Chomas, J E; Dayton, P; Allen, J; Morgan, K; Ferrara, K W

    2001-01-01

    Various applications of contrast-assisted ultrasound, including blood vessel detection, perfusion estimation, and drug delivery, require controlled destruction of contrast agent microbubbles. The lifetime of a bubble depends on properties of the bubble shell, the gas core, and the acoustic waveform impinging on the bubble. Three mechanisms of microbubble destruction are considered: fragmentation, acoustically driven diffusion, and static diffusion. Fragmentation is responsible for rapid destruction of contrast agents on a time scale of microseconds. The primary characteristics of fragmentation are a very large expansion and subsequent contraction, resulting in instability of the bubble. Optical studies using a novel pulsed-laser optical system show the expansion and contraction of ultrasound contrast agent microbubbles with the ratio of maximum diameter to minimum diameter greater than 10. Fragmentation is dependent on the transmission pressure, occurring in over 55% of bubbles insonified with a peak negative transmission pressure of 2.4 MPa and in less than 10% of bubbles insonified with a peak negative transmission pressure of 0.8 MPa. The echo received from a bubble decorrelates significantly within two pulses when the bubble is fragmented, creating an opportunity for rapid detection of bubbles via a decorrelation-based analysis. Preliminary findings with a mouse tumor model verify the occurrence of fragmentation in vivo. A much slower mechanism of bubble destruction is diffusion, which is driven by both a concentration gradient between the concentration of gas in the bubble compared with the concentration of gas in the liquid, as well as convective effects of motion of the gas-liquid interface. The rate of diffusion increases during insonation, because of acoustically driven diffusion, producing changes in diameter on the time scale of the acoustic pulse length, thus, on the order of microseconds. Gas bubbles diffuse while they are not being insonified, termed

  16. Plutonium Interactions with Pseudomonas sp. and its Extracellular Polymeric Substances (Sorption and Reduction of Plutonium by Bacterial Extracellular Polymeric Substances)

    DOE PAGES

    Boggs, Mark A.; Jiao, Yongqin; Dai, Zurong; ...

    2016-09-30

    Safe and effective nuclear waste disposal, as well as accidental radionuclide releases, necessitates our understanding of the fate of radionuclides in the environment, including their interaction with microorganisms. We examined the sorption of Pu(IV) and Pu(V) toPseudomonassp. strain EPS-1W, an aerobic bacterium isolated from plutonium (Pu) contaminated groundwater collected in the United States at the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS), Nevada. We compared Pu sorption to cells with and without bound extracellular polymeric substances (EPS). Wild type cells with intact EPS sorbed Pu(V) more effectively than cells with EPS removed. In contrast, cells with and without EPS showed the samemore » sorption affinity for Pu(IV).In vitroexperiments with extracted EPS revealed rapid reduction of Pu(V) to Pu(IV). Transmission Electron Microscopy indicated that 2-3 nm nanocrystalline Pu(IV)O2formed on cells equilibrated with high concentrations of Pu(IV) but not Pu(V). Thus, EPS, while facilitating Pu(V) reduction, inhibit the formation of nanocrystalline Pu(IV) precipitates. ImportanceOur results indicate that EPS are an effective reductant for Pu(V) and sorbent for Pu(IV), and may impact Pu redox cycling and mobility in the environment. Additionally, the resulting Pu morphology associated with EPS will depend on the concentration and initial Pu oxidation state. While our results are not directly applicable to the Pu transport situation at the NNSS, the results suggest that, in general, stationary microorganisms and biofilms will tend to limit the migration of Pu and provide an important Pu retardation mechanism in the environment. In a broader sense, our results along with a growing body of literature highlight the important role of microorganisms as producers of redox-active organic ligands and therefore as modulators of radionuclide redox transformations and complexation in the subsurface.« less

  17. Extracellular recordings of field potentials from single cardiomyocytes.

    PubMed

    Klauke, Norbert; Smith, Godfrey L; Cooper, Jon

    2006-10-01

    Open microfluidic channels were used to separate the extracellular space around a cardiomyocyte into three compartments: the cell ends and a central partition (insulating gap). The microchannels were filled with buffer solution and overlaid with paraffin oil, thus forming the cavities for the cell ends. The central part of the cardiomyocyte rested on the partition between two adjacent microchannels and was entirely surrounded by the paraffin oil. This arrangement increased the extracellular electrical resistance to > 20 MOmega and facilitated the recording of the time course of the change in extracellular voltage and current during subthreshold and suprathreshold stimuli. The waveform of the extracellular current and voltage in response to an extracellular depolarizing stimulus comprised an initial monophasic signal followed by a biphasic signal with a delay of 2-15 ms. The latter was associated with a transient contraction and therefore caused by an action potential. The biphasic signal became monophasic after the depolarization of one cell end by raised extracellular [K+]. This form of differential recording revealed the repolarization phase of the action potential. At rest, the sarcomere length within the gap was 12% +/- 4.8% longer than outside the gap, but intracellular Ca2+ transients occurred to the same extent as that observed in the outer pools. This data demonstrate the feasibility of the use of a microfluidic bath design to limit the extracellular resistance between two ends of an isolated cardiomyocyte.

  18. The dark side of extracellular ATP in kidney diseases.

    PubMed

    Solini, Anna; Usuelli, Vera; Fiorina, Paolo

    2015-05-01

    Intracellular ATP is the most vital source of cellular energy for biologic systems, whereas extracellular ATP is a multifaceted mediator of several cell functions via its interaction, in an autocrine or paracrine manner, with P2 purinergic receptors expressed on the cell surface. These ionotropic and metabotropic P2 purinergic receptors modulate a variety of physiologic events upon the maintenance of a highly sensitive "set point," the derangement of which may lead to the development of key pathogenic mechanisms during acute and chronic diseases. Growing evidence suggests that extracellular ATP signaling via P2 purinergic receptors may be involved in different renal pathologic conditions. For these reasons, investigators and pharmaceutical companies are actively exploring novel strategies to antagonize or block these receptors with the goal of reducing extracellular ATP production or accelerating extracellular ATP clearance. Targeting extracellular ATP signaling, particularly through the P2X7 receptor, has considerable translational potential, given that novel P2X7-receptor inhibitors are already available for clinical use (e.g., CE224,535, AZD9056, and GSK1482160). This review summarizes the current evidence regarding the involvement of extracellular ATP and its P2 purinergic receptor-mediated signaling in physiologic and pathologic processes in the kidney; potential therapeutic options targeting extracellular ATP purinergic receptors are analyzed as well.

  19. Extracellular Recordings of Field Potentials from Single Cardiomyocytes

    PubMed Central

    Klauke, Norbert; Smith, Godfrey L.; Cooper, Jon

    2006-01-01

    Open microfluidic channels were used to separate the extracellular space around a cardiomyocyte into three compartments: the cell ends and a central partition (insulating gap). The microchannels were filled with buffer solution and overlaid with paraffin oil, thus forming the cavities for the cell ends. The central part of the cardiomyocyte rested on the partition between two adjacent microchannels and was entirely surrounded by the paraffin oil. This arrangement increased the extracellular electrical resistance to >20 MΩ and facilitated the recording of the time course of the change in extracellular voltage and current during subthreshold and suprathreshold stimuli. The waveform of the extracellular current and voltage in response to an extracellular depolarizing stimulus comprised an initial monophasic signal followed by a biphasic signal with a delay of 2–15 ms. The latter was associated with a transient contraction and therefore caused by an action potential. The biphasic signal became monophasic after the depolarization of one cell end by raised extracellular [K+]. This form of differential recording revealed the repolarization phase of the action potential. At rest, the sarcomere length within the gap was 12% ± 4.8% longer than outside the gap, but intracellular Ca2+ transients occurred to the same extent as that observed in the outer pools. This data demonstrate the feasibility of the use of a microfluidic bath design to limit the extracellular resistance between two ends of an isolated cardiomyocyte. PMID:16844752

  20. Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: Development of Extracellular Vesicle-Based Therapeutic Systems

    PubMed Central

    Ohno, Shin-ichiro; Drummen, Gregor P. C.; Kuroda, Masahiko

    2016-01-01

    Many types of cells release phospholipid membrane vesicles thought to play key roles in cell-cell communication, antigen presentation, and the spread of infectious agents. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) carry various proteins, messenger RNAs (mRNAs), and microRNAs (miRNAs), like a “message in a bottle” to cells in remote locations. The encapsulated molecules are protected from multiple types of degradative enzymes in body fluids, making EVs ideal for delivering drugs. This review presents an overview of the potential roles of EVs as natural drugs and novel drug-delivery systems. PMID:26861303

  1. Contrasting strategic and Milan therapies.

    PubMed

    MacKinnon, L

    1983-12-01

    Three related models of therapy are often grouped together as the strategic therapies. These are brief therapy model associated with the Mental Research Institute, approaches developed by Jay Haley and Cloë Madanes, and the model developed by the Milan associates. Controversy exists, however, as to whether the Milan model should be included as a strategic therapy. It appears that the similarities among the three models can mask deeper differences, thus confounding the confusion. This paper contrast the models in their development, theory, and practice.

  2. Lung extracellular matrix and redox regulation

    PubMed Central

    Watson, Walter H.; Ritzenthaler, Jeffrey D.; Roman, Jesse

    2016-01-01

    Pulmonary fibrosis affects millions worldwide and, even though there has been a significant investment in understanding the processes involved in wound healing and maladaptive repair, a complete understanding of the mechanisms responsible for lung fibrogenesis eludes us, and interventions capable of reversing or halting disease progression are not available. Pulmonary fibrosis is characterized by the excessive expression and uncontrolled deposition of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins resulting in erosion of the tissue structure. Initially considered an ‘end-stage’ process elicited after injury, these events are now considered pathogenic and are believed to contribute to the course of the disease. By interacting with integrins capable of signal transduction and by influencing tissue mechanics, ECM proteins modulate processes ranging from cell adhesion and migration to differentiation and growth factor expression. In doing so, ECM proteins help orchestrate complex developmental processes and maintain tissue homeostasis. However, poorly controlled deposition of ECM proteins promotes inflammation, fibroproliferation, and aberrant differentiation of cells, and has been implicated in the pathogenesis of pulmonary fibrosis, atherosclerosis and cancer. Considering their vital functions, ECM proteins are the target of investigation, and oxidation–reduction (redox) reactions have emerged as important regulators of the ECM. Oxidative stress invariably accompanies lung disease and promotes ECM expression directly or through the overproduction of pro-fibrotic growth factors, while affecting integrin binding and activation. In vitro and in vivo investigations point to redox reactions as targets for intervention in pulmonary fibrosis and related disorders, but studies in humans have been disappointing probably due to the narrow impact of the interventions tested, and our poor understanding of the factors that regulate these complex reactions. This review is not meant to

  3. Glioblastoma extracellular vesicles: reservoirs of potential biomarkers

    PubMed Central

    Redzic, Jasmina S; Ung, Timothy H; Graner, Michael W

    2014-01-01

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most frequent and most devastating of the primary central nervous system tumors, with few patients living beyond 2 years postdiagnosis. The damage caused by the disease and our treatments for the patients often leave them physically and cognitively debilitated. Generally, GBMs appear after very short clinical histories and are discovered by imaging (using magnetic resonance imaging [MRI]), and the diagnosis is validated by pathology, following surgical resection. The treatment response and diagnosis of tumor recurrence are also tracked by MRI, but there are numerous problems encountered with these monitoring modalities, such as ambiguous interpretation and forms of pseudoprogression. Diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive biomarkers would be an immense boon in following treatment schemes and in determining recurrence, which often requires an invasive intracranial biopsy to verify imaging data. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are stable, membrane-enclosed, virus-sized particles released from either the cell surface or from endosomal pathways that lead to the systemic release of EVs into accessible biofluids, such as serum/plasma, urine, cerebrospinal fluid, and saliva. EVs carry a wide variety of proteins, nucleic acids, lipids, and other metabolites, with many common features but with enough individuality to be able to identify the cell of origin of the vesicles. These components, if properly interrogated, could allow for the identification of tumor-derived EVs in biofluids, indicating tumor progression, relapse, or treatment failure. That knowledge would allow clinicians to continue with treatment regimens that were actually effective or to change course if the therapies were failing. Here, we review the features of GBM EVs, in terms of EV content and activities that may lead to the use of EVs as serially accessible biomarkers for diagnosis and treatment response in neuro-oncology. PMID:24634586

  4. Extracellular Matrix Assembly in Diatoms (Bacillariophyceae)1

    PubMed Central

    Wustman, Brandon A.; Lind, Jan; Wetherbee, Richard; Gretz, Michael R.

    1998-01-01

    Achnanthes longipes is a marine, biofouling diatom that adheres to surfaces via adhesive polymers extruded during motility or organized into structures called stalks that contain three distinct regions: the pad, shaft, and collar. Four monoclonal antibodies (AL.C1–AL.C4) and antibodies from two uncloned hybridomas (AL.E1 and AL.E2) were raised against the extracellular adhesives of A. longipes. Antibodies were screened against a hot-water-insoluble/hot-bicarbonate-soluble-fraction. The hot-water-insoluble/hot-bicarbonate-soluble fraction was fractionated to yield polymers in three size ranges: F1, ≥ 20,000,000 Mr; F2, ≅100,000 Mr; and F3, <10,000 Mr relative to dextran standards. The ≅100,000-Mr fraction consisted of highly sulfated (approximately 11%) fucoglucuronogalactans (FGGs) and low-sulfate (approximately 2%) FGGs, whereas F1 was composed of O-linked FGG (F2)-polypeptide (F3) complexes. AL.C1, AL.C2, AL.C4, AL.E1, and AL.E2 recognized carbohydrate complementary regions on FGGs, with antigenicity dependent on fucosyl-containing side chains. AL.C3 was unique in that it had a lower affinity for FGGs and did not label any portion of the shaft. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and immunocytochemistry indicated that low-sulfate FGGs are expelled from pores surrounding the raphe terminus, creating the cylindrical outer layers of the shaft, and that highly sulfated FGGs are extruded from the raphe, forming the central core. Antibody-labeling patterns and other evidence indicated that the shaft central-core region is related to material exuded from the raphe during cell motility. PMID:9536061

  5. Biological reference materials for extracellular vesicle studies.

    PubMed

    Valkonen, S; van der Pol, E; Böing, A; Yuana, Y; Yliperttula, M; Nieuwland, R; Laitinen, S; Siljander, P R M

    2017-02-15

    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) mediate normal physiological homeostasis and pathological processes by facilitating intercellular communication. Research of EVs in basic science and clinical settings requires both methodological standardization and development of reference materials (RM). Here, we show insights and results of biological RM development for EV studies. We used a three-step approach to find and develop a biological RM. First, a literature search was done to find candidates for biological RMs. Second, a questionnaire was sent to EV researchers querying the preferences for RM and their use. Third, a biological RM was selected, developed, characterized, and evaluated. The responses to the survey demonstrated a clear and recognized need for RM optimized for the calibration of EV measurements. Based on the literature, naturally occurring and produced biological RM, such as virus particles and liposomes, were proposed as RM. However, none of these candidate RMs have properties completely matching those of EVs, such as size and refractive index distribution. Therefore, we evaluated the use of nanoerythrosomes (NanoE), vesicles produced from erythrocytes, as a potential biological RM. The strength of NanoE is their resemblance to EVs. Compared to the erythrocyte-derived EVs (eryEVs), NanoE have similar morphology, a similar refractive index (1.37), larger diameter (70% of the NanoE are over 200nm), and increased positive staining for CD235a and lipids (Di-8-ANEPPS) (58% and 67% in NanoE vs. 21% and 45% in eryEVs, respectively). Altogether, our results highlight the general need to develop and validate new RM with similar physical and biochemical properties as EVs to standardize EV measurements between instruments and laboratories.

  6. Metabolic requirements for neutrophil extracellular traps formation

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Espinosa, Oscar; Rojas-Espinosa, Oscar; Moreno-Altamirano, María Maximina Bertha; López-Villegas, Edgar Oliver; Sánchez-García, Francisco Javier

    2015-01-01

    As part of the innate immune response, neutrophils are at the forefront of defence against infection, resolution of inflammation and wound healing. They are the most abundant leucocytes in the peripheral blood, have a short lifespan and an estimated turnover of 1010 to 1011 cells per day. Neutrophils efficiently clear microbial infections by phagocytosis and by oxygen-dependent and oxygen-independent mechanisms. In 2004, a new neutrophil anti-microbial mechanism was described, the release of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) composed of DNA, histones and anti-microbial peptides. Several microorganisms, bacterial products, as well as pharmacological stimuli such as PMA, were shown to induce NETs. Neutrophils contain relatively few mitochondria, and derive most of their energy from glycolysis. In this scenario we aimed to analyse some of the metabolic requirements for NET formation. Here it is shown that NETs formation is strictly dependent on glucose and to a lesser extent on glutamine, that Glut-1, glucose uptake, and glycolysis rate increase upon PMA stimulation, and that NET formation is inhibited by the glycolysis inhibitor, 2-deoxy-glucose, and to a lesser extent by the ATP synthase inhibitor oligomycin. Moreover, when neutrophils were exposed to PMA in glucose-free medium for 3 hr, they lost their characteristic polymorphic nuclei but did not release NETs. However, if glucose (but not pyruvate) was added at this time, NET release took place within minutes, suggesting that NET formation could be metabolically divided into two phases; the first, independent from exogenous glucose (chromatin decondensation) and, the second (NET release), strictly dependent on exogenous glucose and glycolysis. PMID:25545227

  7. Lung extracellular matrix and redox regulation.

    PubMed

    Watson, Walter H; Ritzenthaler, Jeffrey D; Roman, Jesse

    2016-08-01

    Pulmonary fibrosis affects millions worldwide and, even though there has been a significant investment in understanding the processes involved in wound healing and maladaptive repair, a complete understanding of the mechanisms responsible for lung fibrogenesis eludes us, and interventions capable of reversing or halting disease progression are not available. Pulmonary fibrosis is characterized by the excessive expression and uncontrolled deposition of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins resulting in erosion of the tissue structure. Initially considered an 'end-stage' process elicited after injury, these events are now considered pathogenic and are believed to contribute to the course of the disease. By interacting with integrins capable of signal transduction and by influencing tissue mechanics, ECM proteins modulate processes ranging from cell adhesion and migration to differentiation and growth factor expression. In doing so, ECM proteins help orchestrate complex developmental processes and maintain tissue homeostasis. However, poorly controlled deposition of ECM proteins promotes inflammation, fibroproliferation, and aberrant differentiation of cells, and has been implicated in the pathogenesis of pulmonary fibrosis, atherosclerosis and cancer. Considering their vital functions, ECM proteins are the target of investigation, and oxidation-reduction (redox) reactions have emerged as important regulators of the ECM. Oxidative stress invariably accompanies lung disease and promotes ECM expression directly or through the overproduction of pro-fibrotic growth factors, while affecting integrin binding and activation. In vitro and in vivo investigations point to redox reactions as targets for intervention in pulmonary fibrosis and related disorders, but studies in humans have been disappointing probably due to the narrow impact of the interventions tested, and our poor understanding of the factors that regulate these complex reactions. This review is not meant to

  8. Extracellular electron transfer mechanisms between microorganisms and minerals

    SciTech Connect

    Shi, Liang; Dong, Hailiang; Reguera, Gemma; Beyenal, Haluk; Lu, Anhuai; Liu, Juan; Yu, Han-Qing; Fredrickson, James K.

    2016-08-30

    Electrons can be transferred from microorganisms to multivalent metal ions that are associated with minerals and vice versa. As the microbial cell envelope is neither physically permeable to minerals nor electrically conductive, microorganisms have evolved strategies to exchange electrons with extracellular minerals. In this Review, we discuss the molecular mechanisms that underlie the ability of microorganisms to exchange electrons, such as c-type cytochromes and microbial nanowires, with extracellular minerals and with microorganisms of the same or different species. Microorganisms that have extracellular electron transfer capability can be used for biotechnological applications, including bioremediation, biomining and the production of biofuels and nanomaterials.

  9. Incorporation of tenascin-C into the extracellular matrix by periostin underlies an extracellular meshwork architecture.

    PubMed

    Kii, Isao; Nishiyama, Takashi; Li, Minqi; Matsumoto, Ken-Ichi; Saito, Mitsuru; Amizuka, Norio; Kudo, Akira

    2010-01-15

    Extracellular matrix (ECM) underlies a complicated multicellular architecture that is subjected to significant forces from mechanical environment. Although various components of the ECM have been enumerated, mechanisms that evolve the sophisticated ECM architecture remain to be addressed. Here we show that periostin, a matricellular protein, promotes incorporation of tenascin-C into the ECM and organizes a meshwork architecture of the ECM. We found that both periostin null mice and tenascin-C null mice exhibited a similar phenotype, confined tibial periostitis, which possibly corresponds to medial tibial stress syndrome in human sports injuries. Periostin possessed adjacent domains that bind to tenascin-C and the other ECM protein: fibronectin and type I collagen, respectively. These adjacent domains functioned as a bridge between tenascin-C and the ECM, which increased deposition of tenascin-C on the ECM. The deposition of hexabrachions of tenascin-C may stabilize bifurcations of the ECM fibrils, which is integrated into the extracellular meshwork architecture. This study suggests a role for periostin in adaptation of the ECM architecture in the mechanical environment.

  10. Neutrophil Extracellular Trap-Related Extracellular Histones Cause Vascular Necrosis in Severe GN.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Santhosh V R; Kulkarni, Onkar P; Mulay, Shrikant R; Darisipudi, Murthy N; Romoli, Simone; Thomasova, Dana; Scherbaum, Christina R; Hohenstein, Bernd; Hugo, Christian; Müller, Susanna; Liapis, Helen; Anders, Hans-Joachim

    2015-10-01

    Severe GN involves local neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation. We hypothesized a local cytotoxic effect of NET-related histone release in necrotizing GN. In vitro, histones from calf thymus or histones released by neutrophils undergoing NETosis killed glomerular endothelial cells, podocytes, and parietal epithelial cells in a dose-dependent manner. Histone-neutralizing agents such as antihistone IgG, activated protein C, or heparin prevented this effect. Histone toxicity on glomeruli ex vivo was Toll-like receptor 2/4 dependent, and lack of TLR2/4 attenuated histone-induced renal thrombotic microangiopathy and glomerular necrosis in mice. Anti-glomerular basement membrane GN involved NET formation and vascular necrosis, whereas blocking NET formation by peptidylarginine inhibition or preemptive anti-histone IgG injection significantly reduced all aspects of GN (i.e., vascular necrosis, podocyte loss, albuminuria, cytokine induction, recruitment or activation of glomerular leukocytes, and glomerular crescent formation). To evaluate histones as a therapeutic target, mice with established GN were treated with three different histone-neutralizing agents. Anti-histone IgG, recombinant activated protein C, and heparin were equally effective in abrogating severe GN, whereas combination therapy had no additive effects. Together, these results indicate that NET-related histone release during GN elicits cytotoxic and immunostimulatory effects. Furthermore, neutralizing extracellular histones is still therapeutic when initiated in established GN.

  11. Improved Methods of Producing and Administering Extracellular Vesicles | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    An efficient method of producing purified extracellular vesicles (EVs), in conjunction with a method that blocks liver macrophages from clearing EVs from the body, has produced promising results for the use of EVs in cancer therapy.

  12. Placental Extracellular Vesicles and Feto-Maternal Communication

    PubMed Central

    Tong, M.; Chamley, L.W.

    2015-01-01

    The human placenta is an anatomically unique structure that extrudes a variety of extracellular vesicles into the maternal blood (including syncytial nuclear aggregates, microvesicles, and nanovesicles). Large quantities of extracellular vesicles are produced by the placenta in both healthy and diseased pregnancies. Since their first description more than 120 years ago, placental extracellular vesicles are only now being recognized as important carriers for proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids, which may play a crucial role in feto-maternal communication. Here, we summarize the current literature on the cargos of placental extracellular vesicles and the known effects of such vesicles on maternal cells/systems, especially those of the maternal immune and vascular systems. PMID:25635060

  13. Contrastive divergence in gaussian diffusions.

    PubMed

    Movellan, Javier R

    2008-09-01

    This letter presents an analysis of the contrastive divergence (CD) learning algorithm when applied to continuous-time linear stochastic neural networks. For this case, powerful techniques exist that allow a detailed analysis of the behavior of CD. The analysis shows that CD converges to maximum likelihood solutions only when the network structure is such that it can match the first moments of the desired distribution. Otherwise, CD can converge to solutions arbitrarily different from the log-likelihood solutions, or they can even diverge. This result suggests the need to improve our theoretical understanding of the conditions under which CD is expected to be well behaved and the conditions under which it may fail. In, addition the results point to practical ideas on how to improve the performance of CD.

  14. Multi-contrast Photoacoustic Microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Junjie

    Photoacoustic microscopy is a hybrid imaging modality with high spatial resolution, moderate imaging depth, excellent imaging contrast and functional imaging capability. Taking full advantage of this powerful weapon, we have investigated different anatomical, functional, flow dynamic and metabolic parameter measurements using photoacoustic microscopy. Specifically, Evans-blue dye was used to enhance photoacoustic microscopy of capillaries; label-free transverse and axial blood flow was measured based on bandwidth broadening and time shift of the photoacoustic signals; metabolic rate of oxygen was quantified in vivo from all the five parameters measured by photoacoustic microcopy; whole cross-sectional imaging of small intestine was achieved on a double-illumination photoacoustic microscopy with extended depth of focus and imaging depth; hemodynamic imaging was performed on a MEMS-mirror enhanced photoacoustic microscopy with a cross-sectional imaging rate of 400 Hz. As a maturing imaging technique, PAM is expected to find new applications in both fundamental life science and clinical practice.

  15. Effects of ionizing radiation on extracellular matrix

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohamed, F.; Bradley, D. A.; Winlove, C. P.

    2007-09-01

    The extracellular matrix is a ubiquitous and important component of tissues. We investigated the effects of ionizing radiation on the physical properties of its principal macromolecular components, pericardial collagen, ligament elastin and hyaluronan, a representative glycosaminoglycan. Samples were exposed to X-rays from an electron linear accelerator in the range of 10-100 Gy to cover the range of irradiation exposure during radiotherapy. A uniaxial mechanical testing protocol was used to characterize the fibrous proteins. For pericardial tissue the major change was an increase in the elastic modulus in the toe region of the curve (⩽20% strain), from 23±18 kPa for controls to 57±22 kPa at a dose of 10 Gy ( p=0.01, α=0.05). At larger strain (⩾20% strain), the elastic modulus in the linear region decreased from 1.92±0.70 MPa for control pericardium tissue to 1.31±0.56 MPa ( p=0.01, α=0.05) for 10 Gy X-irradiated sample. Similar observations have been made previously on tendon collagen at larger strains. For elastin, the stress-strain relationship was linear up to 30% strain, but the elastic modulus decreased significantly with irradiation (controls 626±65 kPa, irradiated 474±121 kPa ( p=0.02, α=0.05), at 10 Gy X-irradiation). The results suggest that for collagen the primary effect of irradiation is generation of additional cross-links, while for elastin chain scissions are important. The viscosity of HA (at 1.25% w/v and 0.125% w/v) was measured by both cone and plate and capillary viscometry, the former providing measurement at uniform shear rate and the latter providing a more sensitive indication of changes at low viscosity. Both techniques revealed a dose-dependent reduction in viscosity (from 3400±194 cP for controls to 1500±88 cP at a shear rate of 2 s -1 and dose of 75 Gy), again suggesting depolymerization.

  16. The extracellular matrix of plants: Molecular, cellular and developmental biology

    SciTech Connect

    1996-12-31

    A symposium entitled ``The Extracellular Matrix of Plants: Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology was held in Tamarron, Colorado, March 15--21, 1996. The following topics were explored in addresses by 43 speakers: structure and biochemistry of cell walls; biochemistry, molecular biology and biosynthesis of lignin; secretory pathway and synthesis of glycoproteins; biosynthesis of matrix polysaccharides, callose and cellulose; role of the extracellular matrix in plant growth and development; plant cell walls in symbiosis and pathogenesis.

  17. Conduction velocities in amphibian skeletal muscle fibres exposed to hyperosmotic extracellular solutions.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhongbo; Hothi, Sandeep S; Xu, Wei; Huang, Christopher L-H

    2007-01-01

    Early quantitative analyses of conduction velocities in unmyelinated nerve studied in a constantly iso-osmotic volume conductor were extended to an analysis of the effects of varying extracellular osmolarities on conduction velocities of surface membrane action potentials in Rana esculenta skeletal muscle fibres. Previous papers had reported that skeletal muscle fibres exposed to a wide range of extracellular sucrose concentrations resemble perfect osmometers with increased extracellular osmolarity proportionally decreasing fibre volume and therefore diminishing fibre radius, a. However, classical electrolyte theory (Robinson and Stokes 1959, Electrolyte solutions 2nd edn. Butterworth & Co. pp 41-42) would then predict that the consequent increases in intracellular ionic strength would correspondingly decrease sarcoplasmic resistivity, R(i). An extension of the original cable analysis then demonstrated that the latter would precisely offset its expected effect of alterations in a on the fibre axial resistance, r(i), and leave action potential conduction velocity constant. In contrast, other reports (Hodgkin and Nakajima J Physiol 221:105-120, 1972) had suggested that R(i) increased with extracellular osmolarity, owing to alterations in cytosolic viscosity. This led to a prediction of a decreased conduction velocity. These opposing hypotheses were then tested in muscle fibres subject to just-suprathreshold stimulation at a Vaseline seal at one end and measuring action potentials and their first order derivatives, dV/dt, using 5-20 MOmega, 3 M KCl glass microelectrodes at defined distances away from the stimulus sites. Exposures to hyperosmotic, sucrose-containing, Ringer solutions then reversibly reduced both conduction velocity and maximum values of dV/dt. This was compatible with an increase in R(i) in the event that conduction depended upon a discharge of membrane capacitance by propagating local circuit currents through initially passive electrical elements

  18. Extracellular potassium homeostasis: insights from hypokalemic periodic paralysis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Chih-Jen; Kuo, Elizabeth; Huang, Chou-Long

    2013-05-01

    Extracellular potassium makes up only about 2% of the total body's potassium store. The majority of the body potassium is distributed in the intracellular space, of which about 80% is in skeletal muscle. Movement of potassium in and out of skeletal muscle thus plays a pivotal role in extracellular potassium homeostasis. The exchange of potassium between the extracellular space and skeletal muscle is mediated by specific membrane transporters. These include potassium uptake by Na(+), K(+)-adenosine triphosphatase and release by inward-rectifier K(+) channels. These processes are regulated by circulating hormones, peptides, ions, and by physical activity of muscle as well as dietary potassium intake. Pharmaceutical agents, poisons, and disease conditions also affect the exchange and alter extracellular potassium concentration. Here, we review extracellular potassium homeostasis, focusing on factors and conditions that influence the balance of potassium movement in skeletal muscle. Recent findings that mutations of a skeletal muscle-specific inward-rectifier K(+) channel cause hypokalemic periodic paralysis provide interesting insights into the role of skeletal muscle in extracellular potassium homeostasis. These recent findings are reviewed.

  19. Economical evolution: microbes reduce the synthetic cost of extracellular proteins.

    PubMed

    Smith, Daniel R; Chapman, Matthew R

    2010-08-24

    Protein evolution is not simply a race toward improved function. Because organisms compete for limited resources, fitness is also affected by the relative economy of an organism's proteome. Indeed, many abundant proteins contain relatively high percentages of amino acids that are metabolically less taxing for the cell to make, thus reducing cellular cost. However, not all abundant proteins are economical, and many economical proteins are not particularly abundant. Here we examined protein composition and found that the relative synthetic cost of amino acids constrains the composition of microbial extracellular proteins. In Escherichia coli, extracellular proteins contain, on average, fewer energetically expensive amino acids independent of their abundance, length, function, or structure. Economic pressures have strategically shaped the amino acid composition of multicomponent surface appendages, such as flagella, curli, and type I pili, and extracellular enzymes, including type III effector proteins and secreted serine proteases. Furthermore, in silico analysis of Pseudomonas syringae, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and over 25 other microbes spanning a wide range of GC content revealed a broad bias toward more economical amino acids in extracellular proteins. The synthesis of any protein, especially those rich in expensive aromatic amino acids, represents a significant investment. Because extracellular proteins are lost to the environment and not recycled like other cellular proteins, they present a greater burden on the cell, as their amino acids cannot be reutilized during translation. We hypothesize that evolution has optimized extracellular proteins to reduce their synthetic burden on the cell.

  20. Cyanobacterial reuse of extracellular organic carbon in microbial mats

    PubMed Central

    Stuart, Rhona K; Mayali, Xavier; Lee, Jackson Z; Craig Everroad, R; Hwang, Mona; Bebout, Brad M; Weber, Peter K; Pett-Ridge, Jennifer; Thelen, Michael P

    2016-01-01

    Cyanobacterial organic matter excretion is crucial to carbon cycling in many microbial communities, but the nature and bioavailability of this C depend on unknown physiological functions. Cyanobacteria-dominated hypersaline laminated mats are a useful model ecosystem for the study of C flow in complex communities, as they use photosynthesis to sustain a more or less closed system. Although such mats have a large C reservoir in the extracellular polymeric substances (EPSs), the production and degradation of organic carbon is not well defined. To identify extracellular processes in cyanobacterial mats, we examined mats collected from Elkhorn Slough (ES) at Monterey Bay, California, for glycosyl and protein composition of the EPS. We found a prevalence of simple glucose polysaccharides containing either α or β (1,4) linkages, indicating distinct sources of glucose with differing enzymatic accessibility. Using proteomics, we identified cyanobacterial extracellular enzymes, and also detected activities that indicate a capacity for EPS degradation. In a less complex system, we characterized the EPS of a cyanobacterial isolate from ES, ESFC-1, and found the extracellular composition of biofilms produced by this unicyanobacterial culture were similar to that of natural mats. By tracing isotopically labeled EPS into single cells of ESFC-1, we demonstrated rapid incorporation of extracellular-derived carbon. Taken together, these results indicate cyanobacteria reuse excess organic carbon, constituting a dynamic pool of extracellular resources in these mats. PMID:26495994

  1. Extracellular Matrix Scaffolds for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine.

    PubMed

    Yi, Sheng; Ding, Fei; Gong, Leiiei; Gu, Xiaosong

    2017-01-01

    The extracellular matrix is produced by the resident cells in tissues and organs, and secreted into the surrounding medium to provide biophysical and biochemical support to the surrounding cells due to its content of diverse bioactive molecules. Recently, the extracellular matrix has been used as a promising approach for tissue engineering. Emerging studies demonstrate that extracellular matrix scaffolds are able to create a favorable regenerative microenvironment, promote tissue-specific remodeling, and act as an inductive template for the repair and functional reconstruction of skin, bone, nerve, heart, lung, liver, kidney, small intestine, and other organs. In the current review, we will provide a critical overview of the structure and function of various types of extracellular matrix, the construction of three-dimensional extracellular matrix scaffolds, and their tissue engineering applications, with a focus on translation of these novel tissue engineered products to the clinic. We will also present an outlook on future perspectives of the extracellular matrix in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.

  2. Content and persistence of extracellular DNA in native soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blagodatskaya, Evgenia; Blagodatsky, Sergey; Anderson, Traute-Heidi; Kuzyakov, Yakov

    2014-05-01

    The long-term persistence of soil extracellular DNA is questionable because of high potential activity of nucleases produced by soil microorganisms. By the other hand, the relative persistence of DNA-like biopolymers could be due to their adsorption on clay minerals and humus substances in soil. High-specific and ultra sensitive reagent PicoGreenTM (Molecular Probes) permits the quantitative assessment of microbial dsDNA in diluted soil extracts giving a good tool for tracing the DNA fate in soil. Our goal was to determine intracellular and extracellular DNA content in cambisol (loamy sand) and in chernozem (silty loam) soils and to investigate the possible adsorption and degradation of extracellular DNA in soil. Optimized procedure of mechanical and enzymatic destruction of cell walls was used for direct extraction of microbial DNA with Tris-EDTA buffer (Blagodatskaya et al., 2003). Extracellular dsDNA was determined in distilled water and in Tris-EDTA extracts without enzymatic or mechanical treatments. DNA content was determined after addition of PicoGreen to diluted soil extracts. Degradation of extracellular DNA was traced during 24 h incubation of 2 µg lambda-phage DNA in soil. Possible DNA adsorption to soil matrix was determined by recovery of lambda -phage DNA added to autoclaved soil. Extracellular dsDNA was absent in water extracts of both soils. The content of extracellular dsDNA extracted by Tris-EDTA buffer was 0.46 µg/g in chernozem and 1.59 µg/g in cambisol amounting 0.43 and 2.8% of total dsDNA content in these soils, respectively. 100% and 64.8% of added extracellular lambda -phage dsDNA was found in cambisol and chernozem soils, respectively, in 5 h after application. 39% and 73.5% of added DNA disappeared in cambisol and in chernozem, respectively, during 24 h incubation. Degradation rate of extracellular DNA depended on microbial biomass content, which was 2.5 times higher in chernozem as compared to cambisol. Maximum adsorption of DNA by

  3. [Inhibitory proteins of neuritic regeneration in the extracellular matrix: structure, molecular interactions and their functions. Mechanisms of extracellular balance].

    PubMed

    Vargas, Javier; Uribe-Escamilla, Rebeca; Alfaro-Rodríguez, Alfonso

    2013-01-01

    After injury of the central nervous system (CNS) in higher vertebrates, neurons neither grow nor reconnect with their targets because their axons or dendrites cannot regenerate within the injured site. In the CNS, the signal from the environment regulating neurite regeneration is not exclusively generated by one molecular group. This signal is generated by the interaction of various types of molecules such as extracellular matrix proteins, soluble factors and surface membrane molecules; all these elements interact with one another generating the matrix's biological state: the extracellular balance. Proteins in the balanced extracellular matrix, support and promote cellular physiological states, including neuritic regeneration. We have reviewed three types of proteins of the extracellular matrix possessing an inhibitory effect and that are determinant of neuritic regeneration failure in the CNS: chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans, keratan sulfate proteoglycans and tenascin. We also review some of the mechanisms involved in the balance of extracellular proteins such as isomerization, epimerization, sulfation and glycosylation as well as the assemblage of the extracellular matrix, the interaction between the matrix and soluble factors and its proteolytic degradation. In the final section, we have presented some examples of the matrix's role in development and in tumor propagation.

  4. Low resistivity, low contrast pays

    SciTech Connect

    Sneider, R.M.; Kulha, J.T. |

    1996-08-01

    Major hydrocarbon accumulations have been produced over the past 40 years in low resistivity, low contrast (LRLC) sands in the Gulf of Mexico Basin (GOM). LRLC reservoirs were commonly considered wet, tight, misidentified as a shale or overlooked, but are being re-evaluated now in other world basins, including Latin America. Seismic response, drill cuttings, cores, log response, petrophysical models, and production testing provide an integrated LRLC evaluation. Causes of LRLC pay in the GOM include: laminated clean sands with shales; silts or shaly sands; clay-coated sands; glauconitic sands; sands with interstitial dispersed clay; sands with disseminated pyrite or other conductive minerals; clay-lined burrows; clay clasts; altered volcanic/feldspathic framework grains; and very fine-grained sand with very saline water. LRLC depositional systems include: deepwater fans, with levee-channel complexes; delta front and toe deposits; shingle turbidites; and alluvial and deltaic channel fills. Geological and petrophysical models developed in the GOM for evaluation of LRLC pay are applicable in Latin America. An Archie clean sand or Waxman-Smits shaly sand model are commonly used to evaluate LRLC anomalies. Often, shaly sand models are not necessarily suited for LRLC evaluation. The Archie lithology exponent (m) and saturation exponent (n) for many LRLC reservoirs range from 1.4 to 1.85, and 1.2 to 1.8, respectively. In thinly laminated LRLC reservoirs, net sand distribution is identified with high resolution logging tools, rock examination and interval testing.

  5. Laser Image Contrast Enhancement System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kurtz, Robert L. (Inventor); Holmes, Richard R. (Inventor); Witherow, William K. (Inventor)

    2002-01-01

    An optical image enhancement system provides improved image contrast in imaging of a target in high temperature surroundings such as a furnace. The optical system includes a source of vertically polarized light such as laser and a beam splitter for receiving the light and directing the light toward the target. A retardation plate is affixed to a target-facing surface of the beam splitter and a vertical polarizer is disposed along a common optical path with the beam splitter between the retardation plate and the target. A horizontal polarizer disposed in the common optical path, receives light passing through a surface of the beam splitter opposed to the target-facing surface. An image detector is disposed at one end of the optical path. A band pass filter having a band pass filter characteristic matching the frequency of the vertically polarized light source is disposed in the path between the horizontal polarizer and the image detector. The use of circular polarization, together with cross polarizers, enables the reflected light to be passed to the detector while blocking thermal radiation.

  6. Brute force absorption contrast microtomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Graham R.; Mills, David

    2014-09-01

    In laboratory X-ray microtomography (XMT) systems, the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) is typically determined by the X-ray exposure due to the low flux associated with microfocus X-ray tubes. As the exposure time is increased, the SNR improves up to a point where other sources of variability dominate, such as differences in the sensitivities of adjacent X-ray detector elements. Linear time-delay integration (TDI) readout averages out detector sensitivities on the critical horizontal direction and equiangular TDI also averages out the X-ray field. This allows the SNR to be increased further with increasing exposure. This has been used in dentistry to great effect, allowing subtle variations in dentine mineralisation to be visualised in 3 dimensions. It has also been used to detect ink in ancient parchments that are too damaged to physically unroll. If sufficient contrast between the ink and parchment exists, it is possible to virtually unroll the tomographic image of the scroll in order that the text can be read. Following on from this work, a feasibility test was carried out to determine if it might be possible to recover images from decaying film reels. A successful attempt was made to re-create a short film sequence from a rolled length of 16mm film using XMT. However, the "brute force" method of scaling this up to allow an entire film reel to be imaged presents a significant challenge.

  7. Extracellular and intracellular esterase processing of SCFA-hexosamine analogs: implications for metabolic glycoengineering and drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Mathew, Mohit P; Tan, Elaine; Shah, Shivam; Bhattacharya, Rahul; Adam Meledeo, M; Huang, Jun; Espinoza, Freddy A; Yarema, Kevin J

    2012-11-15

    This report provides a synopsis of the esterase processing of short chain fatty acid (SCFA)-derivatized hexosamine analogs used in metabolic glycoengineering by demonstrating that the extracellular hydrolysis of these compounds is comparatively slow (e.g., with a t(1/2) of ∼4 h to several days) in normal cell culture as well as in high serum concentrations intended to mimic in vivo conditions. Structure-activity relationship (SAR) analysis of common sugar analogs revealed that O-acetylated and N-azido ManNAc derivatives were more refractory against extracellular inactivation by FBS than their butanoylated counterparts consistent with in silico docking simulations of Ac(4)ManNAc and Bu(4)ManNAc to human carboxylesterase 1 (hCE1). By contrast, all analogs tested supported increased intracellular sialic acid production within 2h establishing that esterase processing once the analogs are taken up by cells is not rate limiting.

  8. Enzymatic Production of Extracellular Reactive Oxygen Species by Marine Microorganisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diaz, J. M.; Andeer, P. F.; Hansel, C. M.

    2014-12-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) serve as intermediates in a myriad of biogeochemically important processes, including cell signaling pathways, cellular oxidative stress responses, and the transformation of both nutrient and toxic metals such as iron and mercury. Abiotic reactions involving the photo-oxidation of organic matter were once considered the only important sources of ROS in the environment. However, the recent discovery of substantial biological ROS production in marine systems has fundamentally shifted this paradigm. Within the last few decades, marine phytoplankton, including diatoms of the genus Thalassiosira, were discovered to produce ample extracellular quantities of the ROS superoxide. Even more recently, we discovered widespread production of extracellular superoxide by phylogenetically and ecologically diverse heterotrophic bacteria at environmentally significant levels (up to 20 amol cell-1 hr-1), which has introduced the revolutionary potential for substantial "dark" cycling of ROS. Despite the profound biogeochemical importance of extracellular biogenic ROS, the cellular mechanisms underlying the production of this ROS have remained elusive. Through the development of a gel-based assay to identify extracellular ROS-producing proteins, we have recently found that enzymes typically involved in antioxidant activity also produce superoxide when molecular oxygen is the only available electron acceptor. For example, large (~3600 amino acids) heme peroxidases are involved in extracellular superoxide production by a bacterium within the widespread Roseobacter clade. In Thalassiosira spp., extracellular superoxide is produced by flavoproteins such as glutathione reductase and ferredoxin NADP+ reductase. Thus, extracellular ROS production may occur via secreted and/or cell surface enzymes that modulate between producing and degrading ROS depending on prevailing geochemical and/or ecological conditions.

  9. The role of the second and third extracellular loops of the adenosine A1 receptor in activation and allosteric modulation.

    PubMed

    Peeters, M C; Wisse, L E; Dinaj, A; Vroling, B; Vriend, G; Ijzerman, A P

    2012-07-01

    The adenosine A1 receptor is a member of the large membrane protein family that signals through G proteins, the G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). GPCRs consist of seven transmembrane domains connected by three intracellular and three extracellular loops. Their N-terminus is extracellular, the C-terminal tail is in the cytoplasm. The transmembrane domains in receptor subfamilies that bind the same endogenous ligand, such as dopamine or adenosine, tend to be highly similar. In contrast, the loop regions can vary greatly, both in sequence and in length, and the role these loops have in the activation mechanism of the receptors remains unclear. Here, we investigated the activating role of the second and third extracellular loop of the human adenosine A1 receptor. By means of an (Ala)3 mutagenic scan in which consecutive sets of three amino acids were mutated into alanine residues in EL2 and a classical alanine scan in EL3, we revealed a strong regulatory role for the second extracellular loop (EL2) of the human adenosine A1 receptor. Besides many residues in the second and the third extracellular loops important for adenosine A1 receptor activation, we also identified two residues in EL2, a tryptophan and a glutamate, that affect the influence of the allosteric modulator PD81,723. These results, combined with a comparison of the different receptor loop regions, provide insight in the activation mechanism of this typical class A GPCR and further emphasize the unique pharmacological profile the loops can provide to individual receptors, even within subfamilies of GPCRs.

  10. Intraperitoneal contrast agents for computed tomography

    SciTech Connect

    Stork, J.

    1985-08-01

    Intraperitoneal contrast agents have been used to diagnose mass lesions, adhesions, and hernias using conventional radiographic techniques. The use of intraperitoneal contrast agents in conjunction with computed tomography (CT) has been limited and is the subject of this report.

  11. The pherophorins: common, versatile building blocks in the evolution of extracellular matrix architecture in Volvocales.

    PubMed

    Hallmann, Armin

    2006-01-01

    Green algae of the order Volvocales provide an unrivalled opportunity for exploring the transition from unicellularity to multicellularity. They range from unicells, like Chlamydomonas, through homocytic colonial forms with increasing cooperation of individual cells, like Gonium or Pandorina, to heterocytic multicellular forms with different cell types and a complete division of labour, like Volvox. A fundamental requirement for the evolution of multicellularity is the development of a complex, multifunctional extracellular matrix (ECM). The ECM has many functions, which can change under developmental control or as a result of environmental factors. Here molecular data from 15 novel proteins are presented. These proteins have been identified in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, Gonium pectorale, Pandorina morum and Volvox carteri, and all belong to a single protein family, the pherophorins. Pherophorin-V1 is shown to be a glycoprotein localized to the 'cellular zone' of the V. carteri ECM. Pherophorin-V1 and -V2 mRNAs are strongly induced not only by the sex inducer, which triggers sexual development at extremely low concentrations, but also by mechanical wounding. Like the extensins of higher plants, which are also developmentally controlled or sometimes inducible by wounding, the pherophorins contain a (hydroxy-)proline-rich (HR) rod-like domain and are abundant within the extracellular compartment. In contrast to most extensins, pherophorins have additional globular A and B domains on both ends of the HR domains. Therefore pherophorins most closely resemble a particular class of higher plant extensin, the solanaceous lectins (e.g. potato lectin), suggesting multivalent carbohydrate-binding functions are present within the A and B domains and are responsible for cross-linking. Our results suggest that pherophorins are used as the building blocks for the extracellular scaffold throughout the Volvocales, with the characteristic mesh sizes in different ECM structures being

  12. Extracellular Ca(2+)-dependent enhancement of cytocidal potency of zoledronic acid in human oral cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Sayaka; Arai, Naoya; Tomihara, Kei; Takashina, Michinori; Hattori, Yuichi; Noguchi, Makoto

    2015-08-15

    Direct antitumor effects of bisphosphonates (BPs) have been demonstrated in various cancer cells in vitro. However, the effective concentrations of BPs are typically much higher than their clinically relevant concentrations. Oral cancers frequently invade jawbone and may lead to the release of Ca(2+) in primary lesions. We investigated the effects of the combined application of zoledronic acid (ZA) and Ca(2+) on proliferation and apoptosis of oral cancer cells. Human oral cancer cells, breast cancer cells, and colon cancer cells were treated with ZA at a wide range of concentrations in different Ca(2+) concentration environments. Under a standard Ca(2+) concentration (0.6mM), micromolar concentrations of ZA were required to inhibit oral cancer cell proliferation. Increasing extracellular Ca(2+) concentrations greatly enhanced the potency of the ZA cytocidal effect. The ability of Ca(2+) to enhance the cytocidal effects of ZA was negated by the Ca(2+)-selective chelator EGTA. In contrast, the cytocidal effect of ZA was less pronounced in breast and colon cancer cells regardless of whether extracellular Ca(2+) was elevated. In oral cancer cells incubated with 1.6mM Ca(2+), ZA up-regulated mitochondrial Bax expression and increased mitochondrial Ca(2+) uptake. This was associated with decreased mitochondrial membrane potential and increased release of cytochrome c. We suggest that ZA can specifically produce potent cytocidal activity in oral cancer cells in an extracellular Ca(2+)-dependent manner, implying that BPs may be useful for treatment of oral squamous cell carcinoma with jawbone invasion leading to the hypercalcemic state.

  13. Extracellular voltage threshold settings can be tuned for optimal encoding of movement and stimulus parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oby, Emily R.; Perel, Sagi; Sadtler, Patrick T.; Ruff, Douglas A.; Mischel, Jessica L.; Montez, David F.; Cohen, Marlene R.; Batista, Aaron P.; Chase, Steven M.

    2016-06-01

    Objective. A traditional goal of neural recording with extracellular electrodes is to isolate action potential waveforms of an individual neuron. Recently, in brain-computer interfaces (BCIs), it has been recognized that threshold crossing events of the voltage waveform also convey rich information. To date, the threshold for detecting threshold crossings has been selected to preserve single-neuron isolation. However, the optimal threshold for single-neuron identification is not necessarily the optimal threshold for information extraction. Here we introduce a procedure to determine the best threshold for extracting information from extracellular recordings. We apply this procedure in two distinct contexts: the encoding of kinematic parameters from neural activity in primary motor cortex (M1), and visual stimulus parameters from neural activity in primary visual cortex (V1). Approach. We record extracellularly from multi-electrode arrays implanted in M1 or V1 in monkeys. Then, we systematically sweep the voltage detection threshold and quantify the information conveyed by the corresponding threshold crossings. Main Results. The optimal threshold depends on the desired information. In M1, velocity is optimally encoded at higher thresholds than speed; in both cases the optimal thresholds are lower than are typically used in BCI applications. In V1, information about the orientation of a visual stimulus is optimally encoded at higher thresholds than is visual contrast. A conceptual model explains these results as a consequence of cortical topography. Significance. How neural signals are processed impacts the information that can be extracted from them. Both the type and quality of information contained in threshold crossings depend on the threshold setting. There is more information available in these signals than is typically extracted. Adjusting the detection threshold to the parameter of interest in a BCI context should improve our ability to decode motor intent

  14. Characterization of purple acid phosphatases involved in extracellular dNTP utilization in Stylosanthes

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Pan-Dao; Xue, Ying-Bin; Chen, Zhi-Jian; Liu, Guo-Dao; Tian, Jiang

    2016-01-01

    Stylo (Stylosanthes spp.) is a pasture legume predominant in tropical and subtropical areas, where low phosphorus (P) availability is a major constraint for plant growth. Therefore, stylo might exhibit superior utilization of the P pool on acid soils, particularly organic P. However, little is known about mechanisms of inorganic phosphate (Pi) acquisition employed by stylo. In this study, the utilization of extracellular deoxy-ribonucleotide triphosphate (dNTP) and the underlying physiological and molecular mechanisms were examined for two stylo genotypes with contrasting P efficiency. Results showed that the P-efficient genotype, TPRC2001-1, was superior to the P-inefficient genotype, Fine-stem, when using dNTP as the sole P source. This was reflected by a higher dry weight and total P content for TPRC2001-1 than for Fine-stem, which was correlated with higher root-associated acid phosphatase (APase) activities in TPRC2001-1 under low P conditions. Subsequently, three PAP members were cloned from TPRC2001-1: SgPAP7, SgPAP10, and SgPAP26. Expression levels of these three SgPAPs were up-regulated by Pi starvation in stylo roots. Furthermore, there was a higher abundance of transcripts of SgPAP7 and SgPAP10 in TPRC2001-1 than in Fine-stem. Subcellular localization analysis demonstrated that these three SgPAPs were localized on the plasma membrane. Overexpression of these three SgPAPs could result in significantly increased root-associated APase activities, and thus extracellular dNTP utilization in bean hairy roots. Taken together, the results herein suggest that SgPAP7, SgPAP10, and SgPAP26 may differentially contribute to root-associated APase activities, and thus control extracellular dNTP utilization in stylo. PMID:27194738

  15. Reductive iron assimilation and intracellular siderophores assist extracellular siderophore-driven iron homeostasis and virulence.

    PubMed

    Condon, Bradford J; Oide, Shinichi; Gibson, Donna M; Krasnoff, Stuart B; Turgeon, B Gillian

    2014-08-01

    Iron is an essential nutrient and prudent iron acquisition and management are key traits of a successful pathogen. Fungi use nonribosomally synthesized secreted iron chelators (siderophores) or reductive iron assimilation (RIA) mechanisms to acquire iron in a high affinity manner. Previous studies with the maize pathogen Cochliobolus heterostrophus identified two genes, NPS2 and NPS6, encoding different nonribosomal peptide synthetases responsible for biosynthesis of intra- and extracellular siderophores, respectively. Deletion of NPS6 results in loss of extracellular siderophore biosynthesis, attenuated virulence, hypersensitivity to oxidative and iron-depletion stress, and reduced asexual sporulation, while nps2 mutants are phenotypically wild type in all of these traits but defective in sexual spore development when NPS2 is missing from both mating partners. Here, it is reported that nps2nps6 mutants have more severe phenotypes than both nps2 and nps6 single mutants. In contrast, mutants lacking the FTR1 or FET3 genes encoding the permease and ferroxidase components, respectively, of the alternate RIA system, are like wild type in all of the above phenotypes. However, without supplemental iron, combinatorial nps6ftr1 and nps2nps6ftr1 mutants are less virulent, are reduced in growth, and are less able to combat oxidative stress and to sporulate asexually, compared with nps6 mutants alone. These findings demonstrate that, while the role of RIA in metabolism and virulence is overshadowed by that of extracellular siderophores as a high-affinity iron acquisition mechanism in C. heterostrophus, it functions as a critical backup for the fungus.

  16. The contribution of the extracellular matrix to gravisensing in characean cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wayne, R.; Staves, M. P.; Leopold, A. C.

    1992-01-01

    The cell-extracellular matrix junction, which includes the cell wall and the outer surface of the plasma membrane, may be an essential region for the perception of gravity by the internodal cells of Chara corallina. Typically, when an internodal cell is oriented vertically, the downwardly directed cytoplasmic stream travels at a velocity that is 10% faster than that of the upwardly directed stream. However when the cells are treated with impermeant hydrolytic enzymes that partially digest cellulose or hemicellulose, the cells lose their ability to respond to gravity even though streaming continues. By contrast, enzymes that digest pectins have no effect on the gravity-induced polarity of cytoplasmic streaming. Furthermore, gravisensing is sensitive to protease treatment; Proteinase K, thermolysin and collagenase but not trypsin, alpha-chymotrypsin or carboxypeptidase B, inhibit gravisensing. These findings indicate that proteins in the cell-extracellular matrix junction may be required for gravisensing. Moreover, the tetrapeptide Arg-Gly-Asp-Ser (RGDS) inhibits gravisensing in a concentration-dependent manner, indicating that the gravireceptor may be an integrin-like protein. The macromolecules necessary for gravisensing have been localized to the cell ends. As a consequence of the exoplasmic site of action of the enzymes and the tetrapeptides, we interpret the results to mean that they are acting on the gravireceptor, although we cannot eliminate the possibility that they are acting on the signal transduction chain. On the whole, our observations indicate that the cell-extracellular matrix junction is a sine qua non for graviperception in statolith-free Chara internodal cells and we suggest that the gravireceptor is located in this region.

  17. Fractal dimension analysis for spike detection in low SNR extracellular signals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salmasi, Mehrdad; Büttner, Ulrich; Glasauer, Stefan

    2016-06-01

    Objective. Many algorithms have been suggested for detection and sorting of spikes in extracellular recording. Nevertheless, it is still challenging to detect spikes in low signal-to-noise ratios (SNR). We propose a spike detection algorithm that is based on the fractal properties of extracellular signals and can detect spikes in low SNR regimes. Semi-intact spikes are low-amplitude spikes whose shapes are almost preserved. The detection of these spikes can significantly enhance the performance of multi-electrode recording systems. Approach. Semi-intact spikes are simulated by adding three noise components to a spike train: thermal noise, inter-spike noise, and spike-level noise. We show that simulated signals have fractal properties which make them proper candidates for fractal analysis. Then we use fractal dimension as the main core of our spike detection algorithm and call it fractal detector. The performance of the fractal detector is compared with three frequently used spike detectors. Main results. We demonstrate that in low SNR, the fractal detector has the best performance and results in the highest detection probability. It is shown that, in contrast to the other three detectors, the performance of the fractal detector is independent of inter-spike noise power and that variations in spike shape do not alter its performance. Finally, we use the fractal detector for spike detection in experimental data and similar to simulations, it is shown that the fractal detector has the best performance in low SNR regimes. Significance. The detection of low-amplitude spikes provides more information about the neural activity in the vicinity of the recording electrodes. Our results suggest using the fractal detector as a reliable and robust method for detecting semi-intact spikes in low SNR extracellular signals.

  18. Binocular contrast discrimination needs monocular multiplicative noise

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Jian; Levi, Dennis M.

    2016-01-01

    The effects of signal and noise on contrast discrimination are difficult to separate because of a singularity in the signal-detection-theory model of two-alternative forced-choice contrast discrimination (Katkov, Tsodyks, & Sagi, 2006). In this article, we show that it is possible to eliminate the singularity by combining that model with a binocular combination model to fit monocular, dichoptic, and binocular contrast discrimination. We performed three experiments using identical stimuli to measure the perceived phase, perceived contrast, and contrast discrimination of a cyclopean sine wave. In the absence of a fixation point, we found a binocular advantage in contrast discrimination both at low contrasts (<4%), consistent with previous studies, and at high contrasts (≥34%), which has not been previously reported. However, control experiments showed no binocular advantage at high contrasts in the presence of a fixation point or for observers without accommodation. We evaluated two putative contrast-discrimination mechanisms: a nonlinear contrast transducer and multiplicative noise (MN). A binocular combination model (the DSKL model; Ding, Klein, & Levi, 2013b) was first fitted to both the perceived-phase and the perceived-contrast data sets, then combined with either the nonlinear contrast transducer or the MN mechanism to fit the contrast-discrimination data. We found that the best model combined the DSKL model with early MN. Model simulations showed that, after going through interocular suppression, the uncorrelated noise in the two eyes became anticorrelated, resulting in less binocular noise and therefore a binocular advantage in the discrimination task. Combining a nonlinear contrast transducer or MN with a binocular combination model (DSKL) provides a powerful method for evaluating the two putative contrast-discrimination mechanisms. PMID:26982370

  19. Binocular contrast discrimination needs monocular multiplicative noise.

    PubMed

    Ding, Jian; Levi, Dennis M

    2016-01-01

    The effects of signal and noise on contrast discrimination are difficult to separate because of a singularity in the signal-detection-theory model of two-alternative forced-choice contrast discrimination (Katkov, Tsodyks, & Sagi, 2006). In this article, we show that it is possible to eliminate the singularity by combining that model with a binocular combination model to fit monocular, dichoptic, and binocular contrast discrimination. We performed three experiments using identical stimuli to measure the perceived phase, perceived contrast, and contrast discrimination of a cyclopean sine wave. In the absence of a fixation point, we found a binocular advantage in contrast discrimination both at low contrasts (<4%), consistent with previous studies, and at high contrasts (≥34%), which has not been previously reported. However, control experiments showed no binocular advantage at high contrasts in the presence of a fixation point or for observers without accommodation. We evaluated two putative contrast-discrimination mechanisms: a nonlinear contrast transducer and multiplicative noise (MN). A binocular combination model (the DSKL model; Ding, Klein, & Levi, 2013b) was first fitted to both the perceived-phase and the perceived-contrast data sets, then combined with either the nonlinear contrast transducer or the MN mechanism to fit the contrast-discrimination data. We found that the best model combined the DSKL model with early MN. Model simulations showed that, after going through interocular suppression, the uncorrelated noise in the two eyes became anticorrelated, resulting in less binocular noise and therefore a binocular advantage in the discrimination task. Combining a nonlinear contrast transducer or MN with a binocular combination model (DSKL) provides a powerful method for evaluating the two putative contrast-discrimination mechanisms.

  20. Using Contrastive Rhetoric in the ESL Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quinn, Janet M.

    2012-01-01

    Contrastive rhetoric studies the writing of second language learners to understand how it is affected by their first language and culture. The field of contrastive rhetoric is as multidimensional as second language writing is complex. It draws on the work of contrastive analysis, anthropology, linguistics, pedagogy, culture studies, translation…

  1. Contrastive Analysis and the Classroom Teacher.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fowler, Dennis G.

    1984-01-01

    Discusses the history, framework, and psychological basis of contrastive analysis. Presents three main points of view of contrastive analysis: (1) predictive (strong), (2) retrospective (weak), and (3) intralingual error analysis (a rejection of the contrastive analysis hypothesis). Suggests that the second viewpoint is more applicable and useful…

  2. Spatial contrast sensitivity in clinical neurology.

    PubMed

    Bulens, C; Meerwaldt, J D; van der Wildt, G J; Keemink, C J

    1988-01-01

    We studied contrast sensitivity function in normal subjects and in three illustrative cases with various neurological disorders. This was done by measuring contrast sensitivity over a range of spatial frequencies for vertical sinewave grating stimuli. It is demonstrated that contrast sensitivity function can give information about visual function not obtainable by conventional test procedures.

  3. Planned Contrasts: An Overview of Comparison Methods.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chatham, Kathy

    Contrasts or comparisons can be used to investigate specific differences between means. Contrasts, as explained by B. Thompson (1985, 1994) are coding vectors that mathematically express hypotheses. The most basic categories of contrasts are planned and unplanned. The purpose of this paper is to explain the relative advantages of using planned…

  4. A Contrast Analysis Approach to Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Furr, R. Michael

    2008-01-01

    This paper presents the foundations of contrast analysis as a method for examining change. Contrast analysis is a relatively high-powered, simple, and informative procedure for evaluating hypotheses about specific patterns of change. This paper reviews the general purpose and nature of contrast analysis, it discusses some of the advantages of…

  5. The extracellular matrix modulates the hallmarks of cancer.

    PubMed

    Pickup, Michael W; Mouw, Janna K; Weaver, Valerie M

    2014-12-01

    The extracellular matrix regulates tissue development and homeostasis, and its dysregulation contributes to neoplastic progression. The extracellular matrix serves not only as the scaffold upon which tissues are organized but provides critical biochemical and biomechanical cues that direct cell growth, survival, migration and differentiation and modulate vascular development and immune function. Thus, while genetic modifications in tumor cells undoubtedly initiate and drive malignancy, cancer progresses within a dynamically evolving extracellular matrix that modulates virtually every behavioral facet of the tumor cells and cancer-associated stromal cells. Hanahan and Weinberg defined the hallmarks of cancer to encompass key biological capabilities that are acquired and essential for the development, growth and dissemination of all human cancers. These capabilities include sustained proliferation, evasion of growth suppression, death resistance, replicative immortality, induced angiogenesis, initiation of invasion, dysregulation of cellular energetics, avoidance of immune destruction and chronic inflammation. Here, we argue that biophysical and biochemical cues from the tumor-associated extracellular matrix influence each of these cancer hallmarks and are therefore critical for malignancy. We suggest that the success of cancer prevention and therapy programs requires an intimate understanding of the reciprocal feedback between the evolving extracellular matrix, the tumor cells and its cancer-associated cellular stroma.

  6. Extracellular Metabolites from Industrial Microalgae and Their Biotechnological Potential.

    PubMed

    Liu, Lu; Pohnert, Georg; Wei, Dong

    2016-10-20

    Industrial microalgae, as a big family of promising producers of renewable biomass feedstock, have been commercially exploited for functional food, living feed and feed additives, high-value chemicals in nutraceuticals, cosmeceuticals, and chemical reagents. Recently, microalgae have also been considered as a group that might play an important role in biofuel development and environmental protection. Almost all current products of industrial microalgae are derived from their biomass; however, large amounts of spent cell-free media are available from mass cultivation that is mostly unexploited. In this contribution we discuss that these media, which may contain a remarkable diversity of bioactive substances are worthy to be recovered for further use. Obviously, the extracellular metabolites from industrial microalgae have long been neglected in the development of production methods for valuable metabolites. With the advances in the last ten years, more and more structures and properties from extracellular metabolites have been identified, and the potential utilization over wide fields is attracting attention. Some of these extracellular metabolites can be potentially used as drugs, antioxidants, growth regulators or metal chelators. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the known extracellular metabolites from industrial microalgae which might be of commercial interest. The attention mainly focuses on the reports of extracellular bioactive metabolites and their potential application in biotechnology.

  7. Propagation of thrombosis by neutrophils and extracellular nucleosome networks

    PubMed Central

    Pfeiler, Susanne; Stark, Konstantin; Massberg, Steffen; Engelmann, Bernd

    2017-01-01

    Neutrophils, early mediators of the innate immune defense, are recruited to developing thrombi in different types of thrombosis. They amplify intravascular coagulation by stimulating the tissue factor-dependent extrinsic pathway via inactivation of endogenous anticoagulants, enhancing factor XII activation or decreasing plasmin generation. Neutrophil-dependent prothrombotic mechanisms are supported by the externalization of decondensed nucleosomes and granule proteins that together form neutrophil extracellular traps. These traps, either in intact or fragmented form, are causally involved in various forms of experimental thrombosis as first indicated by their role in the enhancement of both microvascular thrombosis during bacterial infection and carotid artery thrombosis. Neutrophil extracellular traps can be induced by interactions of neutrophils with activated platelets; vice versa, these traps enhance adhesion of platelets via von Willebrand factor. Neutrophil-induced microvascular thrombus formation can restrict the dissemination and survival of blood-borne bacteria and thereby sustain intravascular immunity. Dysregulation of this innate immune pathway may support sepsis-associated coagulopathies. Notably, neutrophils and extracellular nucleosomes, together with platelets, critically promote fibrin formation during flow restriction-induced deep vein thrombosis. Neutrophil extracellular traps/extracellular nucleosomes are increased in thrombi and in the blood of patients with different vaso-occlusive pathologies and could be therapeutically targeted for the prevention of thrombosis. Thus, during infections and in response to blood vessel damage, neutrophils and externalized nucleosomes are major promoters of intravascular blood coagulation and thrombosis. PMID:27927771

  8. Multistep hopping and extracellular charge transfer in microbial redox chains.

    PubMed

    Pirbadian, Sahand; El-Naggar, Mohamed Y

    2012-10-28

    Dissimilatory metal-reducing bacteria are microorganisms that gain energy by transferring respiratory electrons to extracellular solid-phase electron acceptors. In addition to its importance for physiology and natural environmental processes, this form of metabolism is being investigated for energy conversion and fuel production in bioelectrochemical systems, where microbes are used as biocatalysts at electrodes. One proposed strategy to accomplish this extracellular charge transfer involves forming a conductive pathway to electrodes by incorporating redox components on outer cell membranes and along extracellular appendages known as microbial nanowires within biofilms. To describe extracellular charge transfer in microbial redox chains, we employed a model based on incoherent hopping between sites in the chain and an interfacial treatment of electrochemical interactions with the surrounding electrodes. Based on this model, we calculated the current-voltage (I-V) characteristics and found the results to be in good agreement with I-V measurements across and along individual microbial nanowires produced by the bacterium Shewanella oneidensis MR-1. Based on our analysis, we propose that multistep hopping in redox chains constitutes a viable strategy for extracellular charge transfer in microbial biofilms.

  9. Optogenetic approaches addressing extracellular modulation of neural excitability

    PubMed Central

    Ferenczi, Emily A.; Vierock, Johannes; Atsuta-Tsunoda, Kyoko; Tsunoda, Satoshi P.; Ramakrishnan, Charu; Gorini, Christopher; Thompson, Kimberly; Lee, Soo Yeun; Berndt, Andre; Perry, Chelsey; Minniberger, Sonja; Vogt, Arend; Mattis, Joanna; Prakash, Rohit; Delp, Scott; Deisseroth, Karl; Hegemann, Peter

    2016-01-01

    The extracellular ionic environment in neural tissue has the capacity to influence, and be influenced by, natural bouts of neural activity. We employed optogenetic approaches to control and investigate these interactions within and between cells, and across spatial scales. We began by developing a temporally precise means to study microdomain-scale interactions between extracellular protons and acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs). By coupling single-component proton-transporting optogenetic tools to ASICs to create two-component optogenetic constructs (TCOs), we found that acidification of the local extracellular membrane surface by a light-activated proton pump recruited a slow inward ASIC current, which required molecular proximity of the two components on the membrane. To elicit more global effects of activity modulation on ‘bystander’ neurons not under direct control, we used densely-expressed depolarizing (ChR2) or hyperpolarizing (eArch3.0, eNpHR3.0) tools to create a slow non-synaptic membrane current in bystander neurons, which matched the current direction seen in the directly modulated neurons. Extracellular protons played contributory role but were insufficient to explain the entire bystander effect, suggesting the recruitment of other mechanisms. Together, these findings present a new approach to the engineering of multicomponent optogenetic tools to manipulate ionic microdomains, and probe the complex neuronal-extracellular space interactions that regulate neural excitability. PMID:27045897

  10. Extracellular Metabolites from Industrial Microalgae and Their Biotechnological Potential

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Lu; Pohnert, Georg; Wei, Dong

    2016-01-01

    Industrial microalgae, as a big family of promising producers of renewable biomass feedstock, have been commercially exploited for functional food, living feed and feed additives, high-value chemicals in nutraceuticals, cosmeceuticals, and chemical reagents. Recently, microalgae have also been considered as a group that might play an important role in biofuel development and environmental protection. Almost all current products of industrial microalgae are derived from their biomass; however, large amounts of spent cell-free media are available from mass cultivation that is mostly unexploited. In this contribution we discuss that these media, which may contain a remarkable diversity of bioactive substances are worthy to be recovered for further use. Obviously, the extracellular metabolites from industrial microalgae have long been neglected in the development of production methods for valuable metabolites. With the advances in the last ten years, more and more structures and properties from extracellular metabolites have been identified, and the potential utilization over wide fields is attracting attention. Some of these extracellular metabolites can be potentially used as drugs, antioxidants, growth regulators or metal chelators. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the known extracellular metabolites from industrial microalgae which might be of commercial interest. The attention mainly focuses on the reports of extracellular bioactive metabolites and their potential application in biotechnology. PMID:27775594

  11. Vitamin A Deficiency and Alterations in the Extracellular Matrix

    PubMed Central

    Barber, Teresa; Esteban-Pretel, Guillermo; Marín, María Pilar; Timoneda, Joaquín

    2014-01-01

    Vitamin A or retinol which is the natural precursor of several biologically active metabolites can be considered the most multifunctional vitamin in mammals. Its deficiency is currently, along with protein malnutrition, the most serious and common nutritional disorder worldwide. It is necessary for normal embryonic development and postnatal tissue homeostasis, and exerts important effects on cell proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. These actions are produced mainly by regulating the expression of a variety of proteins through transcriptional and non-transcriptional mechanisms. Extracellular matrix proteins are among those whose synthesis is known to be modulated by vitamin A. Retinoic acid, the main biologically active form of vitamin A, influences the expression of collagens, laminins, entactin, fibronectin, elastin and proteoglycans, which are the major components of the extracellular matrix. Consequently, the structure and macromolecular composition of this extracellular compartment is profoundly altered as a result of vitamin A deficiency. As cell behavior, differentiation and apoptosis, and tissue mechanics are influenced by the extracellular matrix, its modifications potentially compromise organ function and may lead to disease. This review focuses on the effects of lack of vitamin A in the extracellular matrix of several organs and discusses possible molecular mechanisms and pathologic implications. PMID:25389900

  12. In vitro Determination of Extracellular Proteins from Xylella fastidiosa

    PubMed Central

    Mendes, Juliano S.; Santiago, André S.; Toledo, Marcelo A. S.; Horta, Maria A. C.; de Souza, Alessandra A.; Tasic, Ljubica; de Souza, Anete P.

    2016-01-01

    The phytopathogen Xylella fastidiosa causes economic losses in important agricultural crops. Xylem vessel occlusion caused by biofilm formation is the major mechanism underlying the pathogenicity of distinct strains of X. fastidiosa. Here, we provide a detailed in vitro characterization of the extracellular proteins of X. fastidiosa. Based on the results, we performed a comparison with a strain J1a12, which cannot induce citrus variegated chlorosis symptoms when inoculated into citrus plants. We then extend this approach to analyze the extracellular proteins of X. fastidiosa in media supplemented with calcium. We verified increases in extracellular proteins concomitant with the days of growth and, consequently, biofilm development (3–30 days). Outer membrane vesicles carrying toxins were identified beginning at 10 days of growth in the 9a5c strain. In addition, a decrease in extracellular proteins in media supplemented with calcium was observed in both strains. Using mass spectrometry, 71 different proteins were identified during 30 days of X. fastidiosa biofilm development, including proteases, quorum-sensing proteins, biofilm formation proteins, hypothetical proteins, phage-related proteins, chaperones, toxins, antitoxins, and extracellular vesicle membrane components. PMID:28082960

  13. Monitoring of Extracellular Matrix Formation using Nanosecond Pulsed Laser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishihara, Miya; Sato, Masato; Mitani, Genya; Nagai, Toshihiro; Kutsuna, Toshiharu; Mochida, Joji; Kikuchi, Makoto

    There is a new demand in the field of tissue engineering for evaluation technology of extracellular matrix because the extracellular matrix plays an important role in the function of skeletal tissue such as articular cartilage. We previously proposed a noninvasive method of viscoelastic characterization of tissue phantom, based on the photoacoustic measurement. The purpose of this study was to verify the applicability of the photoacoustic measurement method for monitoring of the development of extracellular matrix using tissue engineering technology. The decay times measured by the photoacoustic method were varied with culture periods when tissue-engineered articular cartilages with various culture periods (-12 weeks) were used as samples. Tissue-engineered cartilage cultured for a long period showed shorter decay times, indicating that the samples approached an elastic solid from a rheological viewpoint. By comparison between biochemical analyses and biomechanical studies, we proved that the photoacoustic signal was a good indicator for evaluating extracellular matrix formation because the change of the photoacoustic decay times would reflect the production of an extracellular matrix.

  14. Molecular MR Contrast Agents for the Detection of Cancer: Past and Present

    PubMed Central

    Bogdanov, Alexei; Mazzanti, Mary L.

    2011-01-01

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a powerful diagnostic tool capable of providing detailed information about the structure and composition of tumors, with unsurpassed spatial resolution. The use of exogenously administered contrast agents allows compartment-specific enhancement of tumors, enabling imaging of functional blood and interstitial volumes. Current efforts are directed at enhancing the capabilities of MRI in oncology to add contrast agents with molecular specificities to the growing armamentarium of diagnostic probes capable of changing local proton relaxation times as a consequence of specific contrast agent binding to cell surface receptors or extracellular matrix components. We review herein the most notable examples, illustrating major trends in the development of specific probes for high-resolution imaging in molecular oncology. PMID:21362515

  15. Internal polarization limits coronagraph contrast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breckinridge, James Bernard; Lam, Wai Sze T.; Chipman, Russell A.

    2015-08-01

    The performance of exoplanet imaging coronagraphs is limited by internal polarization. The point spread function (PSF) of these systems is determined by the details of the opto-mechanical layout selected to package the system and by the highly reflective metal thin films needed to maintain high optical system transmittance. To obtain the high contrast levels needed for terrestrial exoplanet science requires a comprehensive understanding of the vector electromagnetic wave from the source through the system. The literature contains many studies of polarization transmissivity of telescopes and instruments for the purpose of photo-polarimetry. Here we report for the first time the effects of polarization on high-performance image quality.We modeled a typical 2.4-meter Cassegrain telescope system with one 90-degree fold mirror and analyzed the system for polarization aberrations.We find: 1. The image plane irradiance distribution is the linear superposition of four PSF images: One for each of the two orthogonal polarizations and one for each of two cross-product polarization terms. 2. The PSF image is brighter by 9% for one polarization component compared to its orthogonal state. 3. The image of the PSF for orthogonal components are shifted across the focal plane with respect to each other, causing the PSF image for astronomical sources (polarized or unpolarized) to become slightly elongated (elliptical) with a centroid separation of about 0.6 masec. 4. The orthogonally polarized components of unpolarized sources contain different wavefront aberrations, which are separated by approximately 32 milliwaves. This implies that a wavefront correction system cannot optimally correct the aberrations for all polarizations simultaneously. 5. The polarization aberrations couple small parts (~1E-5) of each polarization component of the light into the orthogonal polarization to create highly distorted secondary, or “ghost” PSF image.. The radius of the spatial extent of the 90

  16. Extracellular Adenosine: A Safety Signal That Dampens Hypoxia-Induced Inflammation During Ischemia

    PubMed Central

    Grenz, Almut; Homann, Dirk

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Traditionally, the single most unique feature of the immune system has been attributed to its capability to discriminate between self (e.g., host proteins) and nonself (e.g., pathogens). More recently, an emerging immunologic concept involves the notion that the immune system responds via a complex system for sensing signals of danger, such as pathogens or host-derived signals of cellular distress (e.g., ischemia), while remaining unresponsive to nondangerous motifs. Experimental studies have provided strong evidence that the production and signaling effects of extracellular adenosine are dramatically enhanced during conditions of limited oxygen availability as occurs during ischemia. As such, adenosine would fit the bill of signaling molecules that are enhanced during situations of cellular distress. In contrast to a danger signal, we propose here that extracellular adenosine operates as a countermeasure, in fact as a safety signal, to both restrain potentially harmful immune responses and to maintain and promote general tissue integrity during conditions of limited oxygen availability. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 15, 2221–2234. PMID:21126189

  17. On-chip, multisite extracellular and intracellular recordings from primary cultured skeletal myotubes

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    In contrast to the extensive use of microelectrode array (MEA) technology in electrophysiological studies of cultured neurons and cardiac muscles, the vast field of skeletal muscle research has yet to adopt the technology. Here we demonstrate an empowering MEA technology for high quality, multisite, long-term electrophysiological recordings from cultured skeletal myotubes. Individual rat skeletal myotubes cultured on micrometer sized gold mushroom-shaped microelectrode (gMμE) based MEA tightly engulf the gMμEs, forming a high seal resistance between the myotubes and the gMμEs. As a consequence, spontaneous action potentials generated by the contracting myotubes are recorded as extracellular field potentials with amplitudes of up to 10 mV for over 14 days. Application of a 10 ms, 0.5–0.9 V voltage pulse through the gMμEs electroporated the myotube membrane, and transiently converted the extracellular to intracellular recording mode for 10–30 min. In a fraction of the cultures stable attenuated intracellular recordings were spontaneously produced. In these cases or after electroporation, subthreshold spontaneous potentials were also recorded. The introduction of the gMμE-MEA as a simple-to-use, high-quality electrophysiological tool together with the progress made in the use of cultured human myotubes opens up new venues for basic and clinical skeletal muscle research, preclinical drug screening, and personalized medicine. PMID:27812002

  18. Ligand-specific regulation of the extracellular surface of a G-protein-coupled receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Bokoch, Michael P.; Zou, Yaozhong; Rasmussen, Søren G.F.; Liu, Corey W.; Nygaard, Rie; Rosenbaum, Daniel M.; Fung, Juan José; Choi, Hee-Jung; Thian, Foon Sun; Kobilka, Tong Sun; Puglisi, Joseph D.; Weis, William I.; Pardo, Leonardo; Prosser, R. Scott; Mueller, Luciano; Kobilka, Brian K.

    2010-01-14

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are seven-transmembrane proteins that mediate most cellular responses to hormones and neurotransmitters. They are the largest group of therapeutic targets for a broad spectrum of diseases. Recent crystal structures of GPCRs have revealed structural conservation extending from the orthosteric ligand-binding site in the transmembrane core to the cytoplasmic G-protein-coupling domains. In contrast, the extracellular surface (ECS) of GPCRs is remarkably diverse and is therefore an ideal target for the discovery of subtype-selective drugs. However, little is known about the functional role of the ECS in receptor activation, or about conformational coupling of this surface to the native ligand-binding pocket. Here we use NMR spectroscopy to investigate ligand-specific conformational changes around a central structural feature in the ECS of the {beta}{sub 2} adrenergic receptor: a salt bridge linking extracellular loops 2 and 3. Small-molecule drugs that bind within the transmembrane core and exhibit different efficacies towards G-protein activation (agonist, neutral antagonist and inverse agonist) also stabilize distinct conformations of the ECS. We thereby demonstrate conformational coupling between the ECS and the orthosteric binding site, showing that drugs targeting this diverse surface could function as allosteric modulators with high subtype selectivity. Moreover, these studies provide a new insight into the dynamic behaviour of GPCRs not addressable by static, inactive-state crystal structures.

  19. Neutrophil extracellular traps contain calprotectin, a cytosolic protein complex involved in host defense against Candida albicans.

    PubMed

    Urban, Constantin F; Ermert, David; Schmid, Monika; Abu-Abed, Ulrike; Goosmann, Christian; Nacken, Wolfgang; Brinkmann, Volker; Jungblut, Peter R; Zychlinsky, Arturo

    2009-10-01

    Neutrophils are the first line of defense at the site of an infection. They encounter and kill microbes intracellularly upon phagocytosis or extracellularly by degranulation of antimicrobial proteins and the release of Neutrophil Extracellular Traps (NETs). NETs were shown to ensnare and kill microbes. However, their complete protein composition and the antimicrobial mechanism are not well understood. Using a proteomic approach, we identified 24 NET-associated proteins. Quantitative analysis of these proteins and high resolution electron microscopy showed that NETs consist of modified nucleosomes and a stringent selection of other proteins. In contrast to previous results, we found several NET proteins that are cytoplasmic in unstimulated neutrophils. We demonstrated that of those proteins, the antimicrobial heterodimer calprotectin is released in NETs as the major antifungal component. Absence of calprotectin in NETs resulted in complete loss of antifungal activity in vitro. Analysis of three different Candida albicans in vivo infection models indicated that NET formation is a hitherto unrecognized route of calprotectin release. By comparing wild-type and calprotectin-deficient animals we found that calprotectin is crucial for the clearance of infection. Taken together, the present investigations confirmed the antifungal activity of calprotectin in vitro and, moreover, demonstrated that it contributes to effective host defense against C. albicans in vivo. We showed for the first time that a proportion of calprotectin is bound to NETs in vitro and in vivo.

  20. A refined technique for extraction of extracellular matrices from bacterial biofilms and its applicability

    PubMed Central

    Chiba, Akio; Sugimoto, Shinya; Sato, Fumiya; Hori, Seiji; Mizunoe, Yoshimitsu

    2015-01-01

    Biofilm-forming bacteria embedded in polymeric extracellular matrices (ECMs) that consist of polysaccharides, proteins and/or extracellular DNAs (eDNAs) acquire high resistance to antimicrobial agents and host immune systems. To understand molecular mechanisms of biofilm formation and maintenance and to develop therapeutic countermeasures against chronic biofilm-associated infections, reliable methods to isolate ECMs are inevitable. In this study, we refined the ECM extraction method recently reported and evaluated its applicability. Using three Staphylococcus aureus biofilms in which proteins, polysaccharides or eDNAs are major contributors to their integrity, ECMs were extracted using salts and detergents. We found that extraction with 1.5 M sodium chloride (NaCl) could be optimum for not only ECM proteins but also polysaccharides and eDNAs. In addition, long-time incubation was not necessary for efficient ECM isolation. Lithium chloride (LiCl) was comparative to NaCl but is more expensive. In contrast to SDS, NaCl hardly caused leakage of intracellular proteins and did not affect viability of bacterial cells within biofilms. Furthermore, this method is applicable to other bacteria such as Gram-positive Staphylococcus epidermidis and Gram-negative Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Thus, this refined method is very simple, rapid, low cost and non-invasive and could be used for a broad range of applications. PMID:25154775

  1. Involvement of plasmin-mediated extracellular activation of progalanin in angiogenesis.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Hiroyuki; Okada, Rina; Iguchi, Kazuaki; Ohno, Satoshi; Yokogawa, Takashi; Nishikawa, Kazuya; Unno, Keiko; Hoshino, Minoru; Takeda, Atsushi

    2013-01-18

    Progalanin is released from the small cell lung carcinoma line SBC-3A and converted to its active form by plasmin. To elucidate the role of progalanin activation in the extracellular compartment, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity was studied in SBC-3A cells treated with progalanin siRNA, and angiogenesis was measured in tumor tissue originating from SBC-3A cell transplantation into mice. Progalanin siRNA caused downregulation of progalanin expression for approximately 8 days. MMP activity and angiogenesis were reduced in tumors induced by transplantation of progalanin siRNA-treated SBC-3A cells. In contrast, MMP-9 and MMP-2 activity and angiogenesis increased in tumors originating from progalanin siRNA-treated SBC-3A cells in the presence of galanin and progalanin. Furthermore, injection of tranexamic acid, a plasmin inhibitor, more markedly reduced MMP-9 and MMP-2 activity and angiogenesis in tumors originating from progalanin siRNA-treated SBC-3A cells and in tumor tissue originating from progalanin siRNA-treated SBC-3A cells in the presence of progalanin. The reduction of MMP-9 and MMP-2 activity with tranexamic acid was restored by galanin, but not by progalanin. Moreover, tranexamic acid reduced angiogenesis in control siRNA-treated SBC-3A cells. These results suggest that the activation of progalanin by plasmin in the extracellular compartment was involved in MMP-9 and MMP-2 activation and in angiogenesis in tumor tissue.

  2. Extracellular Matrix Fibronectin Stimulates the Self-Assembly of Microtissues on Native Collagen Gels

    PubMed Central

    Sevilla, Carlos A.; Dalecki, Diane

    2010-01-01

    Fibronectin is an adhesive glycoprotein that is polymerized into extracellular matrices via a tightly regulated, cell-dependent process. Here, we demonstrate that fibronectin matrix polymerization induces the self-assembly of multicellular structures in vitro, termed tissue bodies. Fibronectin-null mouse embryonic fibroblasts adherent to compliant gels of polymerized type I collagen failed to spread or proliferate. In contrast, addition of fibronectin to collagen-adherent fibronectin-null mouse embryonic fibroblasts resulted in a dose-dependent increase in cell number, and induced the formation of three-dimensional (3D) multicellular structures that remained adherent and well-spread on the native collagen substrate. An extensive fibrillar fibronectin matrix formed throughout the microtissue. Blocking fibronectin matrix polymerization inhibited both cell proliferation and microtissue formation, demonstrating the importance of fibronectin fibrillogenesis in triggering cellular self-organization. Cell proliferation, tissue body formation, and tissue body shape were dependent on both fibronectin and collagen concentrations, suggesting that the relative proportion of collagen and fibronectin fibrils polymerized into the extracellular matrix influences the extent of cell proliferation and the final shape of microtissues. These data demonstrate a novel role for cell-mediated fibronectin fibrillogenesis in the formation and vertical assembly of microtissues, and provide a novel approach for engineering complex tissue architecture. PMID:20673131

  3. Phenotypic diversity of neoplastic chondrocytes and extracellular matrix gene expression in cartilaginous neoplasms.

    PubMed Central

    Aigner, T.; Dertinger, S.; Vornehm, S. I.; Dudhia, J.; von der Mark, K.; Kirchner, T.

    1997-01-01

    Chondrocyte differentiation is characterized by distinct cellular phenotypes, which can be identified by specific extracellular matrix gene expression profiles. By applying in situ analysis on the mRNA and protein level in a series of benign and malignant human chondrogenic neoplasms, we were able to identify for the first time different phenotypes of neoplastic chondrocytes in vivo: 1) mature chondrocytes, which synthesized the characteristic cartilaginous extracellular tumor matrix, 2) cells resembling hypertrophic chondrocytes of the fetal growth plate, 3) cells resembling so-called dedifferentiated chondrocytes, and 4) well differentiated chondrocytic cells, which expressed type I collagen, indicating the presence of post-hypertrophic differentiated neoplastic chondrocytes. Chondrocytes exhibiting a range of phenotypes were found to be present in the same neoplasm. The different observed phenotypes, including the dedifferentiated phenotype, were in contrast to the anaplastic cells of high-grade chondrosarcomas. Comparison of expression data with tumor morphology revealed a relationship between the cellular phenotypes, the tumor matrix composition, and the matrix and cell morphology within the neoplasms. The distinctly different phenotypes of neoplastic chondrocytes are the basis of the characteristic high biochemical and morphological heterogeneity of chondroid neoplasms and shed light on their biological and clinical behavior. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 PMID:9176404

  4. Extracellular polysaccharides mediate pilus retraction during social motility of Myxococcus xanthus.

    PubMed

    Li, Yinuo; Sun, Hong; Ma, Xiaoyuan; Lu, Ann; Lux, Renate; Zusman, David; Shi, Wenyuan

    2003-04-29

    Myxococcus xanthus is a Gram-negative bacterium with a complex life cycle that includes vegetative swarming and fruiting-body formation. Social (S)-motility (coordinated movement of large cell groups) requires both type IV pili and fibrils (extracellular matrix material consisting of polysaccharides and protein). Little is known about the role of this extracellular matrix, or fibril material, in pilus-dependent motility. In this study, mutants lacking fibril material and, therefore, S-motility were found to be hyperpiliated. We demonstrated that addition of fibril material resulted in pilus retraction and rescued this phenotype. The fibril material was further examined to determine the component(s) that were responsible for triggering pilus retraction. Protein-free fibril material was found to be highly active in correcting hyperpiliation. However, the amine sugars present in hydrolyzed fibril material, e.g., glucosamine and N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc) had no effect on fibril(-) mutants, but, interestingly, cause hyperpiliation in wild-type cells. In contrast, chitin, a natural GlcNAc polymer, was found to restore pilus retraction in hyperpiliated mutants, indicating that a polysaccharide containing amine sugars is likely required for pilus retraction. These data suggest that the interaction of type IV pili with amine-containing polysaccharides on cell and slime-trail surfaces may trigger pilus retraction, resulting in S-motility and slime-trailing behaviors.

  5. Intravital Confocal and Two-photon Imaging of Dual-color Cells and Extracellular Matrix Mimics

    PubMed Central

    Bal, Ufuk; Andresen, Volker; Baggett, Brenda; Utzinger, Urs

    2013-01-01

    To optimize imaging of cells in three dimensional culture we studied confocal backscattering, Second Harmonic Generation (SHG) and autofluorescence as source of contrast in extracellular matrix (ECM) mimics and evaluated the attenuation as well as bleaching of endogenous cellular fluorescence signals. All common ECM mimics exhibit contrast observable with confocal reflectance microscopy. SHG imaging on collagen I based hydrogels provides high contrast and good optical penetration depth. Agarose is a useful embedding medium because it allows for large optical penetration and exhibits minimal autofluorescence while still providing good reflectance to detect voids in the embedding medium. We labeled breast cancer cells’ outline with DsRed2 and nucleus with eGFP. DsRed2 can be excited with confocal imaging at 568nm, and with two photon excitation (TPE) in the red and longer NIR. eGFP was excited at 488nm for confocal and in the NIR for TPE. While there is small difference in the bleaching rate for eGFP between confocal and TPE we observed significant difference for DsRed2 where bleaching is strongest during TPE in the red wavelengths and smallest during confocal imaging. After a few hundred microns depth in a collagen I hydrogel, TPE fluorescence becomes twice as strong compared to confocal imaging. PMID:23380006

  6. [Physiopathology of nephropathy studied with contrast media].

    PubMed

    Morales Buenrostro, L E; Tellez Zenteno, J F; Torre Delgadillo, A

    2000-01-01

    For the technological advances in diagnostic and therapeutic procedures, the use of intravenous contrast media in the hospital is more and more frequent. It can produce acute renal failure secondary to its nephrotoxicity known as contrast media nephropathy. This review describes the pathophysiologic mechanisms of contrast media injury, including cytotoxicity caused by hyperosmoloarity of contrast media, the hemodynamic factors and the role of the renin-angiotensin system, prostaglandins, oxygen free radicals, endothelin-1, adenosine, nitric oxide and others. The understanding of this information is of vital importance for the development of prophylactic strategies for contrast media nephropathy.

  7. Hepatic Fibrosis: Evaluation with Semiquantitative Contrast-enhanced CT

    PubMed Central

    Varenika, Vanja; Fu, Yanjun; Maher, Jacquelyn J.; Gao, Dongwei; Kakar, Sanjay; Cabarrus, Miguel C.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: To evaluate the feasibility of using contrast material–enhanced computed tomographic (CT) measurements of hepatic fractional extracellular space (fECS) and macromolecular contrast material (MMCM) uptake to measure severity of liver fibrosis. Materials and Methods: All procedures were approved by and executed in accordance with University of California, San Francisco, institutional animal care and use committee regulations. Twenty-one rats that received intragastric CCl4 for 0–12 weeks were imaged with respiratory-gated micro-CT by using both a conventional contrast material and a novel iodinated MMCM. Histopathologic hepatic fibrosis was graded qualitatively by using the Ishak fibrosis score and quantitatively by using morphometry of the fibrosis area. Hepatic fECS and MMCM uptake were calculated for each examination and correlated with histopathologic findings by using uni- and multivariate linear regressions. Results: Ishak fibrosis scores ranged from a baseline of 0 in untreated animals to a maximum of 5. Histopathologic liver fibrosis area increased from 0.46% to 3.5% over the same interval. Strong correlations were seen between conventional contrast-enhanced CT measurements of fECS and both the Ishak fibrosis scores (R2 = 0.751, P < .001) and the fibrosis area (R2 = 0.801, P < .001). Strong negative correlations were observed between uptake of MMCM in the liver and Ishak fibrosis scores (R2 = 0.827, P < .001), as well as between uptake of MMCM in the liver and fibrosis area (R2 = 0.643, P = .001). Multivariate linear regression analysis showed a trend toward independence for fECS and MMCM uptake in the prediction of Ishak fibrosis scores, with an R2 value of 0.86 (P = .081 and P = .033, respectively). Conclusion: Contrast-enhanced CT measurements of fECS and MMCM uptake are individually capable of being used to estimate the degree of early hepatic fibrosis in a rat model. © RSNA, 2012 Supplemental material: http

  8. Aberrant alternative splicing and extracellular matrix gene expression in mouse models of myotonic dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Du, Hongqing; Cline, Melissa S.; Osborne, Robert J.; Tuttle, Daniel L.; Clark, Tyson A.; Donohue, John Paul; Hall, Megan P.; Shiue, Lily; Swanson, Maurice S.; Thornton, Charles A.; Ares, Manuel

    2009-01-01

    Myotonic dystrophy (DM1) is associated with expression of expanded CTG DNA repeats as RNA (CUGexp RNA). To test whether CUGexp RNA creates a global splicing defect, we compared skeletal muscle of two mouse DM1 models, one expressing a CTGexp transgene, and another homozygous for a defective Mbnl1 gene. Strong correlation in splicing changes for ~100 new Mbnl1-regulated exons indicates loss of Mbnl1 explains >80% of the splicing pathology due to CUGexp RNA. In contrast, only about half of mRNA level changes can be attributed to loss of Mbnl1, indicating CUGexp RNA has Mbnl1-independent effects, particularly on mRNAs for extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. We propose that CUGexp RNA causes two separate effects: loss of Mbnl1 function, disrupting splicing, and loss of another function that disrupts ECM mRNA regulation, possibly mediated by MBNL2. These findings reveal unanticipated similarities between DM1 and other muscular dystrophies. PMID:20098426

  9. Cell-mediated fibre recruitment drives extracellular matrix mechanosensing in engineered fibrillar microenvironments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baker, Brendon M.; Trappmann, Britta; Wang, William Y.; Sakar, Mahmut S.; Kim, Iris L.; Shenoy, Vivek B.; Burdick, Jason A.; Chen, Christopher S.

    2015-12-01

    To investigate how cells sense stiffness in settings structurally similar to native extracellular matrices, we designed a synthetic fibrous material with tunable mechanics and user-defined architecture. In contrast to flat hydrogel surfaces, these fibrous materials recapitulated cell-matrix interactions observed with collagen matrices including stellate cell morphologies, cell-mediated realignment of fibres, and bulk contraction of the material. Increasing the stiffness of flat hydrogel surfaces induced mesenchymal stem cell spreading and proliferation; however, increasing fibre stiffness instead suppressed spreading and proliferation for certain network architectures. Lower fibre stiffness permitted active cellular forces to recruit nearby fibres, dynamically increasing ligand density at the cell surface and promoting the formation of focal adhesions and related signalling. These studies demonstrate a departure from the well-described relationship between material stiffness and spreading established with hydrogel surfaces, and introduce fibre recruitment as a previously undescribed mechanism by which cells probe and respond to mechanics in fibrillar matrices.

  10. Cell-mediated fiber recruitment drives extracellular matrix mechanosensing in engineered fibrillar microenvironments

    PubMed Central

    Baker, Brendon M.; Trappmann, Britta; Wang, William Y.; Sakar, Mahmut S.; Kim, Iris L.; Shenoy, Vivek B.; Burdick, Jason A.; Chen, Christopher S.

    2015-01-01

    To investigate how cells sense stiffness in settings structurally similar to native extracellular matrices (ECM), we designed a synthetic fibrous material with tunable mechanics and user-defined architecture. In contrast to flat hydrogel surfaces, these fibrous materials recapitulated cell-matrix interactions observed with collagen matrices including stellate cell morphologies, cell-mediated realignment of fibers, and bulk contraction of the material. While increasing the stiffness of flat hydrogel surfaces induced mesenchymal stem cell spreading and proliferation, increasing fiber stiffness instead suppressed spreading and proliferation depending on network architecture. Lower fiber stiffness permitted active cellular forces to recruit nearby fibers, dynamically increasing ligand density at the cell surface and promoting the formation of focal adhesions and related signaling. These studies demonstrate a departure from the well-described relationship between material stiffness and spreading established with hydrogel surfaces, and introduce fiber recruitment as a novel mechanism by which cells probe and respond to mechanics in fibrillar matrices. PMID:26461445

  11. Sensitivity of bladder cancer cells to curcumin and its derivatives depends on the extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Hauser, Paul J; Han, Zhiyong; Sindhwani, Puneet; Hurst, Robert E

    2007-01-01

    Because the response of cancer cells to chemotherapeutic agents depends upon the supporting extracellular matrix (ECM), the response in vivo may not be reproduced in 2-dimensional cell culture. The dose-response to curcumin and two derivatives by bladder cancer cells grown on both normal (SISgel) and cancer-derived ECM (Matrigel) and on plastic were contrasted. Cells grown on Matrigel were resistant to curcumins, but cells growing on SISgel, which mimic cancer cells suppressed by normal ECM, were nearly as sensitive as cells grown on plastic. SV40-immortalized urothelial cells, which are models for premalignant cells, were the most sensitive, but even aggressive cell lines were nearly as sensitive when grown on SISgel as on plastic. Curcumin response depends highly on the supporting ECM, and cells grown on plastic poorly models cells growing on natural ECM. Curcumin could prove an effective chemopreventive for bladder cancer recurrence when administered intravesically post-therapy.

  12. A Look inside the Listeria monocytogenes Biofilms Extracellular Matrix

    PubMed Central

    Colagiorgi, Angelo; Di Ciccio, Pierluigi; Zanardi, Emanuela; Ghidini, Sergio; Ianieri, Adriana

    2016-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is a foodborne pathogen able to persist in food industry and is responsible for a severe illness called listeriosis. The ability of L. monocytogenes to persist in environments is due to its capacity to form biofilms that are a sessile community of microorganisms embedded in a self-produced matrix of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS’s). In this review, we summarized recent efforts performed in order to better characterize the polymeric substances that compose the extracellular matrix (ECM) of L. monocytogenes biofilms. EPS extraction and analysis led to the identification of polysaccharides, proteins, extracellular DNA, and other molecules within the listerial ECM. All this knowledge will be useful for increasing food protection, suggesting effective strategies for the minimization of persistence of L. monocytogenes in food industry environments. PMID:27681916

  13. Functional Advantages Conferred by Extracellular Prokaryotic Membrane Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Manning, Andrew J.; Kuehn, Meta J.

    2015-01-01

    The absence of subcellular organelles is a characteristic typically used to distinguish prokaryotic from eukaryotic cells. But recent discoveries do not support this dogma. Over the past 50 years, researchers have begun to appreciate and characterize Gram-negative bacterial outer membrane derived vesicles and Gram-positive and archaeal membrane vesicles. These extracellular, membrane-bound organelles can perform a variety of functions, including binding and delivery of DNA, transport of virulence factors, protection of the cell from outer membrane targeting antimicrobials, and ridding the cell of toxic envelope proteins. Here we review the contributions of these extracellular organelles to prokaryotic physiology and compare these with the contributions of the bacterial interior membrane bound organelles responsible for harvesting light energy and for generating magnetic crystals of heavy metals. Understanding the roles of these multifunctional extracellular vesicle organelles as microbial tools will help us to better realize the diverse interactions that occur in our polymicrobial world. PMID:23615201

  14. Extracellular matrix as a driver for lung regeneration.

    PubMed

    Balestrini, Jenna L; Niklason, Laura E

    2015-03-01

    Extracellular matrix has manifold roles in tissue mechanics, guidance of cellular behavior, developmental biology, and regenerative medicine. Over the past several decades, various pre-clinical and clinical studies have shown that many connective tissues may be replaced and/or regenerated using suitable extracellular matrix scaffolds. More recently, decellularization of lung tissue has shown that gentle removal of cells can leave behind a "footprint" within the matrix that may guide cellular adhesion, differentiation and homing following cellular repopulation. Fundamental issues like understanding matrix composition and micro-mechanics remain difficult to tackle, largely because of a lack of available assays and tools for systematically characterizing intact matrix from tissues and organs. This review will critically examine the role of engineered and native extracellular matrix in tissue and lung regeneration, and provide insights into directions for future research and translation.

  15. Functional advantages conferred by extracellular prokaryotic membrane vesicles.

    PubMed

    Manning, Andrew J; Kuehn, Meta J

    2013-01-01

    The absence of subcellular organelles is a characteristic typically used to distinguish prokaryotic from eukaryotic cells. But recent discoveries do not support this dogma. Over the past 50 years, researchers have begun to appreciate and characterize Gram-negative bacterial outer membrane-derived vesicles and Gram-positive and archaeal membrane vesicles. These extracellular, membrane-bound organelles can perform a variety of functions, including binding and delivery of DNA, transport of virulence factors, protection of the cell from outer membrane targeting antimicrobials and ridding the cell of toxic envelope proteins. Here, we review the contributions of these extracellular organelles to prokaryotic physiology and compare these with the contributions of the bacterial interior membrane-bound organelles responsible for harvesting light energy and for generating magnetic crystals of heavy metals. Understanding the roles of these multifunctional extracellular vesicle organelles as microbial tools will help us to better realize the diverse interactions that occur in our polymicrobial world.

  16. Modeling extracellular electrical stimulation: II. Computational validation and numerical results.

    PubMed

    Tahayori, Bahman; Meffin, Hamish; Dokos, Socrates; Burkitt, Anthony N; Grayden, David B

    2012-12-01

    The validity of approximate equations describing the membrane potential under extracellular electrical stimulation (Meffin et al 2012 J. Neural Eng. 9 065005) is investigated through finite element analysis in this paper. To this end, the finite element method is used to simulate a cylindrical neurite under extracellular stimulation. Laplace's equations with appropriate boundary conditions are solved numerically in three dimensions and the results are compared to the approximate analytic solutions. Simulation results are in agreement with the approximate analytic expressions for longitudinal and transverse modes of stimulation. The range of validity of the equations describing the membrane potential for different values of stimulation and neurite parameters are presented as well. The results indicate that the analytic approach can be used to model extracellular electrical stimulation for realistic physiological parameters with a high level of accuracy.

  17. Unidirectional cell crawling model guided by extracellular cues.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhanjiang; Geng, Yuxu

    2015-03-01

    Cell migration is a highly regulated and complex cellular process to maintain proper homeostasis for various biological processes. Extracellular environment was identified as the main affecting factors determining the direction of cell crawling. It was observed experimentally that the cell prefers migrating to the area with denser or stiffer array of microposts. In this article, an integrated unidirectional cell crawling model was developed to investigate the spatiotemporal dynamics of unidirectional cell migration, which incorporates the dominating intracellular biochemical processes, biomechanical processes and the properties of extracellular micropost arrays. The interpost spacing and the stiffness of microposts are taken into account, respectively, to study the mechanism of unidirectional cell locomotion and the guidance of extracellular influence cues on the direction of unidirectional cell crawling. The model can explain adequately the unidirectional crawling phenomena observed in experiments such as "spatiotaxis" and "durotaxis," which allows us to obtain further insights into cell migration.

  18. Only scratching the cell surface: extracellular signals in cerebrum development.

    PubMed

    Hébert, Jean M

    2013-08-01

    Numerous roles have been identified for extracellular signals such as Fibroblast Growth Factors (FGFs), Transforming Growth Factor-βs (TGFβs), Wingless-Int proteins (WNTs), and Sonic Hedgehog (SHH) in assigning fates to cells during development of the cerebrum. However, several fundamental questions remain largely unexplored. First, how does the same extracellular signal instruct precursor cells in different locations or at different stages to adopt distinct fates? And second, how does a precursor cell integrate multiple signals to adopt a specific fate? Answers to these questions require knowing the mechanisms that underlie each cell type's competence to respond to certain extracellular signals. This brief review provides illustrative examples of potential mechanisms that begin to bridge the gap between cell surface and cell fate during cerebrum development.

  19. Imaging hydrated microbial extracellular polymers: Comparative analysis by electron microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Dohnalkova, A.C.; Marshall, M. J.; Arey, B. W.; Williams, K. H.; Buck, E. C.; Fredrickson, J. K.

    2011-01-01

    Microbe-mineral and -metal interactions represent a major intersection between the biosphere and geosphere but require high-resolution imaging and analytical tools for investigating microscale associations. Electron microscopy has been used extensively for geomicrobial investigations and although used bona fide, the traditional methods of sample preparation do not preserve the native morphology of microbiological components, especially extracellular polymers. Herein, we present a direct comparative analysis of microbial interactions using conventional electron microscopy approaches of imaging at room temperature and a suite of cryogenic electron microscopy methods providing imaging in the close-to-natural hydrated state. In situ, we observed an irreversible transformation of the hydrated bacterial extracellular polymers during the traditional dehydration-based sample preparation that resulted in their collapse into filamentous structures. Dehydration-induced polymer collapse can lead to inaccurate spatial relationships and hence could subsequently affect conclusions regarding nature of interactions between microbial extracellular polymers and their environment.

  20. Electronic magnification and perceived contrast of video.

    PubMed

    Haun, Andrew; Woods, Russell L; Peli, Eli

    2012-11-01

    Electronic magnification of an image results in a decrease in its perceived contrast. The decrease in perceived contrast could be due to a perceived blur or to limited sampling of the range of contrasts in the original image. We measured the effect on perceived contrast of magnification in two contexts: either a small video was enlarged to fill a larger area, or a portion of a larger video was enlarged to fill the same area as the original. Subjects attenuated the source video contrast to match the perceived contrast of the magnified videos, with the effect increasing with magnification and decreasing with viewing distance. These effects are consistent with expectations based on both the contrast statistics of natural images and the contrast sensitivity of the human visual system. We demonstrate that local regions within videos usually have lower physical contrast than the whole, and that this difference accounts for a minor part of the perceived differences. Instead, visibility of 'missing content' (blur) in a video is misinterpreted as a decrease in contrast. We detail how the effects of magnification on perceived contrast can be measured while avoiding confounding factors.

  1. Regulation of CFTR chloride channel macroscopic conductance by extracellular bicarbonate.

    PubMed

    Li, Man-Song; Holstead, Ryan G; Wang, Wuyang; Linsdell, Paul

    2011-01-01

    The CFTR contributes to Cl⁻ and HCO₃⁻ transport across epithelial cell apical membranes. The extracellular face of CFTR is exposed to varying concentrations of Cl⁻ and HCO₃⁻ in epithelial tissues, and there is evidence that CFTR is sensitive to changes in extracellular anion concentrations. Here we present functional evidence that extracellular Cl⁻ and HCO₃⁻ regulate anion conduction in open CFTR channels. Using cell-attached and inside-out patch-clamp recordings from constitutively active mutant E1371Q-CFTR channels, we show that voltage-dependent inhibition of CFTR currents in intact cells is significantly stronger when the extracellular solution contains HCO₃⁻ than when it contains Cl⁻. This difference appears to reflect differences in the ability of extracellular HCO₃⁻ and Cl⁻ to interact with and repel intracellular blocking anions from the pore. Strong block by endogenous cytosolic anions leading to reduced CFTR channel currents in intact cells occurs at physiologically relevant HCO₃⁻ concentrations and membrane potentials and can result in up to ∼50% inhibition of current amplitude. We propose that channel block by cytosolic anions is a previously unrecognized, physiologically relevant mechanism of channel regulation that confers on CFTR channels sensitivity to different anions in the extracellular fluid. We further suggest that this anion sensitivity represents a feedback mechanism by which CFTR-dependent anion secretion could be regulated by the composition of the secretions themselves. Implications for the mechanism and regulation of CFTR-dependent secretion in epithelial tissues are discussed.

  2. Extracellular reduction of uranium via Geobacter conductive pili as a protective cellular mechanism.

    PubMed

    Cologgi, Dena L; Lampa-Pastirk, Sanela; Speers, Allison M; Kelly, Shelly D; Reguera, Gemma

    2011-09-13

    The in situ stimulation of Fe(III) oxide reduction by Geobacter bacteria leads to the concomitant precipitation of hexavalent uranium [U(VI)] from groundwater. Despite its promise for the bioremediation of uranium contaminants, the biological mechanism behind this reaction remains elusive. Because Fe(III) oxide reduction requires the expression of Geobacter's conductive pili, we evaluated their contribution to uranium reduction in Geobacter sulfurreducens grown under pili-inducing or noninducing conditions. A pilin-deficient mutant and a genetically complemented strain with reduced outer membrane c-cytochrome content were used as controls. Pili expression significantly enhanced the rate and extent of uranium immobilization per cell and prevented periplasmic mineralization. As a result, pili expression also preserved the vital respiratory activities of the cell envelope and the cell's viability. Uranium preferentially precipitated along the pili and, to a lesser extent, on outer membrane redox-active foci. In contrast, the pilus-defective strains had different degrees of periplasmic mineralization matching well with their outer membrane c-cytochrome content. X-ray absorption spectroscopy analyses demonstrated the extracellular reduction of U(VI) by the pili to mononuclear tetravalent uranium U(IV) complexed by carbon-containing ligands, consistent with a biological reduction. In contrast, the U(IV) in the pilin-deficient mutant cells also required an additional phosphorous ligand, in agreement with the predominantly periplasmic mineralization of uranium observed in this strain. These findings demonstrate a previously unrecognized role for Geobacter conductive pili in the extracellular reduction of uranium, and highlight its essential function as a catalytic and protective cellular mechanism that is of interest for the bioremediation of uranium-contaminated groundwater.

  3. Production of extracellular fatty acid using engineered Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background As an alternative for economic biodiesel production, the microbial production of extracellular fatty acid from renewable resources is receiving more concerns recently, since the separation of fatty acid from microorganism cells is normally involved in a series of energy-intensive steps. Many attempts have been made to construct fatty acid producing strains by targeting genes in the fatty acid biosynthetic pathway, while few studies focused on the cultivation process and the mass transfer kinetics. Results In this study, both strain improvements and cultivation process strategies were applied to increase extracellular fatty acid production by engineered Escherichia coli. Our results showed overexpressing ‘TesA and the deletion of fadL in E. coli BL21 (DE3) improved extracellular fatty acid production, while deletion of fadD didn’t strengthen the extracellular fatty acid production for an undetermined mechanism. Moreover, the cultivation process controls contributed greatly to extracellular fatty acid production with respect to titer, cell growth and productivity by adjusting the temperature, adding ampicillin and employing on-line extraction. Under optimal conditions, the E. coli strain (pACY-‘tesA-ΔfadL) produced 4.8 g L−1 extracellular fatty acid, with the specific productivity of 0.02 g h−1 g−1dry cell mass, and the yield of 4.4% on glucose, while the ratios of cell-associated fatty acid versus extracellular fatty acid were kept below 0.5 after 15 h of cultivation. The fatty acids included C12:1, C12:0, C14:1, C14:0, C16:1, C16:0, C18:1, C18:0. The composition was dominated by C14 and C16 saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. Using the strain pACY-‘tesA, similar results appeared under the same culture conditions and the titer was also much higher than that ever reported previously, which suggested that the supposedly superior strain did not necessarily perform best for the efficient production of desired product. The strain p

  4. Response of zonal chondrocytes to extracellular matrix-hydrogels.

    PubMed

    Hwang, Nathaniel S; Varghese, Shyni; Lee, H Janice; Theprungsirikul, Parnduangjai; Canver, Adam; Sharma, Blanka; Elisseeff, Jennifer

    2007-09-04

    We investigated the biological response of chondrocytes isolated from different zones of articular cartilage and their cellular behaviors in poly (ethylene glycol)-based (PEG) hydrogels containing exogenous type I collagen, hyaluronic acid (HA), or chondroitin sulfate (CS). The cellular morphology was strongly dependent on the extracellular matrix component of hydrogels. Additionally, the exogenous extracellular microenvironment affected matrix production and cartilage specific gene expression of chondrocytes from different zones. CS-based hydrogels showed the strongest response in terms of gene expression and matrix accumulation for both superficial and deep zone chondrocytes, but HA and type I collagen-based hydrogels demonstrated zonal-dependent cellular responses.

  5. RESPONSE OF ZONAL CHONDROCYTES TO EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX-HYDROGELS

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Nathaniel S.; Varghese, Shyni; Lee, H. Janice; Theprungsirikul, Parnduangjai; Canver, Adam; Sharma, Blanka; Elisseeff, Jennifer

    2009-01-01

    We investigated the biological response of chondrocytes isolated from different zones of articular cartilage and their cellular behaviors in poly (ethylene glycol)-based (PEG) hydrogels containing exogenous type I collagen, hyaluronic acid (HA), or chondroitin sulfate (CS). The cellular morphology was strongly dependent on the extracellular matrix component of hydrogels. Additionally, the exogenous extracellular microenvironment affected matrix production and cartilage specific gene expression of chondrocytes from different zones. CS-based hydrogels showed the strongest response in terms of gene expression and matrix accumulation for both superficial and deep zone chondrocytes, but HA and type I collagen-based hydrogels demonstrated zonal-dependent cellular responses. PMID:17692846

  6. Catabolism of host-derived compounds during extracellular bacterial infections

    PubMed Central

    Meadows, Jamie A.; Wargo, Matthew J.

    2014-01-01

    Efficient catabolism of host-derived compounds is essential for bacterial survival and virulence. While these links in intracellular bacteria are well-studied, such studies in extracellular bacteria lag behind, mostly for technical reasons. The field has identified important metabolic pathways, but the mechanisms by which they impact infection and in particular, establishing the importance of a compound’s catabolism versus alternate metabolic roles has been difficult. In this review we will examine evidence for catabolism during extracellular bacterial infections in animals and known or potential roles in virulence. In the process, we point out key gaps in the field that will require new or newly adapted techniques. PMID:24038340

  7. Extracellular vesicles round off communication in the nervous system

    PubMed Central

    Budnik, Vivian; Ruiz-Cañada, Catalina; Wendler, Franz

    2016-01-01

    Functional neural competence and integrity require interactive exchanges among sensory and motor neurons, interneurons and glial cells. Recent studies have attributed some of the tasks needed for these exchanges to extracellular vesicles (such as exosomes and microvesicles), which are most prominently involved in shuttling reciprocal signals between myelinating glia and neurons, thus promoting neuronal survival, the immune response mediated by microglia, and synapse assembly and plasticity. Such vesicles have also been identified as important factors in the spread of neurodegenerative disorders and brain cancer. These extracellular vesicle functions add a previously unrecognized level of complexity to transcellular interactions within the nervous system. PMID:26891626

  8. Extracellular proteins limit the dispersal of biogenic nanoparticles

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Moreau, J.W.; Weber, P.K.; Martin, M.C.; Gilbert, B.; Hutcheon, I.D.; Banfield, J.F.

    2007-01-01

    High-spatial-resolution secondary ion microprobe spectrometry, synchrotron radiation-based Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, and polyacrylamide gel analysis demonstrated the intimate association of proteins with spheroidal aggregates of biogenic zinc sulfide nanocrystals, an example of extracellular biomineralization. Experiments involving synthetic zinc sulfide nanoparticles and representative amino acids indicated a driving role for cysteine in rapid nanoparticle aggregation. These findings suggest that microbially derived extracellular proteins can limit the dispersal of nanoparticulate metal-bearing phases, such as the mineral products of bioremediation, that may otherwise be transported away from their source by subsurface fluid flow.

  9. Extracellular Vesicles as New Players in Cellular Senescence

    PubMed Central

    Urbanelli, Lorena; Buratta, Sandra; Sagini, Krizia; Tancini, Brunella; Emiliani, Carla

    2016-01-01

    Cell senescence is associated with the secretion of many factors, the so-called “senescence-associated secretory phenotype”, which may alter tissue microenvironment, stimulating the organism to clean up senescent cells and replace them with newly divided ones. Therefore, although no longer dividing, these cells are still metabolically active and influence the surrounding tissue. Much attention has been recently focused not only on soluble factors released by senescent cells, but also on extracellular vesicles as conveyors of senescence signals outside the cell. Here, we give an overview of the role of extracellular vesicles in biological processes and signaling pathways related to senescence and aging. PMID:27571072

  10. GFP-based evaluation system of recombinant expression through the secretory pathway in insect cells and its application to the extracellular domains of class C GPCRs.

    PubMed

    Ashikawa, Yuji; Ihara, Makoto; Matsuura, Noriko; Fukunaga, Yuko; Kusakabe, Yuko; Yamashita, Atsuko

    2011-10-01

    Applications of the GFP-fusion technique have greatly facilitated evaluations of the amounts and qualities of sample proteins used for structural analyses. In this study, we applied the GFP-based sample evaluation to secreted protein expression by insect cells. We verified that a GFP variant, GFPuv, retains proper folding and monodispersity within all expression spaces in Sf9 cells, such as the cytosol, organelles, and even the extracellular space after secretion, and thus can serve as a proper folding reporter for recombinant proteins. We then applied the GFPuv-based system to the extracellular domains of class C G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) and examined their localization, folding, and oligomerization upon insect cell expression. The extracellular domain of metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (mGluR1) exhibited good secreted expression by Sf9 cells, and the secreted proteins formed dimer with a monodisperse hydrodynamic state favorable for crystallization, consistent with the results from previous successful structural analyses. In contrast, the extracellular domains of sweet/umami taste receptors (T1R) almost completely remained in the cell. Notably, the T1R and mGluR1 subfractions that remained in the cellular space showed polydisperse hydrodynamic states with large aggregated fractions, without forming dimers. These results indicated that the proper folding and oligomerization of the extracellular domains of the class C GPCR are achieved through the secretory pathway.

  11. Flash Infrared Thermography Contrast Data Analysis Technique

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koshti, Ajay

    2014-01-01

    This paper provides information on an IR Contrast technique that involves extracting normalized contrast versus time evolutions from the flash thermography inspection infrared video data. The analysis calculates thermal measurement features from the contrast evolution. In addition, simulation of the contrast evolution is achieved through calibration on measured contrast evolutions from many flat-bottom holes in the subject material. The measurement features and the contrast simulation are used to evaluate flash thermography data in order to characterize delamination-like anomalies. The thermal measurement features relate to the anomaly characteristics. The contrast evolution simulation is matched to the measured contrast evolution over an anomaly to provide an assessment of the anomaly depth and width which correspond to the depth and diameter of the equivalent flat-bottom hole (EFBH) similar to that used as input to the simulation. A similar analysis, in terms of diameter and depth of an equivalent uniform gap (EUG) providing a best match with the measured contrast evolution, is also provided. An edge detection technique called the half-max is used to measure width and length of the anomaly. Results of the half-max width and the EFBH/EUG diameter are compared to evaluate the anomaly. The information provided here is geared towards explaining the IR Contrast technique. Results from a limited amount of validation data on reinforced carbon-carbon (RCC) hardware are included in this paper.

  12. "Basic MR Relaxation Mechanisms & Contrast Agent Design"

    PubMed Central

    De León-Rodríguez, Luis M.; Martins, André F.; Pinho, Marco; Rofsky, Neil; Sherry, A. Dean

    2015-01-01

    The diagnostic capabilities of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) have undergone continuous and substantial evolution by virtue of hardware and software innovations and the development and implementation of exogenous contrast media. Thirty years since the first MRI contrast agent was approved for clinical use, a reliance on MR contrast media persists largely to improve image quality with higher contrast resolution and to provide additional functional characterization of normal and abnormal tissues. Further development of MR contrast media is an important component in the quest for continued augmentation of diagnostic capabilities. In this review we will detail the many important considerations when pursuing the design and use of MR contrast media. We will offer a perspective on the importance of chemical stability, particularly kinetic stability, and how this influences one's thinking about the safety of metal-ligand based contrast agents. We will discuss the mechanisms involved in magnetic resonance relaxation in the context of probe design strategies. A brief description of currently available contrast agents will be accompanied by an in-depth discussion that highlights promising MRI contrast agents in development for future clinical and research applications. Our intention is to give a diverse audience an improved understanding of the factors involved in developing new types of safe and highly efficient MR contrast agents and, at the same time, provide an appreciation of the insights into physiology and disease that newer types of responsive agents can provide. PMID:25975847

  13. Inverse modeling of human contrast response.

    PubMed

    Katkov, Mikhail; Tsodyks, Misha; Sagi, Dov

    2007-10-01

    Mathematical singularities found in the Signal Detection Theory (SDT) based analysis of the 2-Alternative-Forced-Choice (2AFC) method [Katkov, M., Tsodyks, M., & Sagi, D. (2006a). Analysis of two-alternative force-choice Signal Detection Theory model. Journal of Mathematical Psychology, 50, 411-420; Katkov, M., Tsodyks, M., & Sagi, D. (2006b). Singularities in the inverse modeling of 2AFC contrast discrimination data. Vision Research, 46, 256-266; Katkov, M., Tsodyks, M., & Sagi, D. (2007). Singularities explained: Response to Klein. Vision Research, doi:10.1016/j.visres.2006.10.030] imply that contrast discrimination data obtained with the 2AFC method cannot always be used to reliably estimate the parameters of the underlying model (internal response and noise functions) with a reasonable number of trials. Here we bypass this problem with the Identification Task (IT) where observers identify one of N contrasts. We have found that identification data varies significantly between experimental sessions. Stable estimates using individual session data showed Contrast Response Functions (CRF) with high gain in the low contrast regime and low gain in the high contrast regime. Noise Amplitudes (NA) followed a decreasing function of contrast at low contrast levels, and were practically constant above some contrast level. The transition between these two regimes corresponded approximately to the position of the dipper in the Threshold versus Contrast (TvC) curves that were computed using the estimated parameters and independently measured using 2AFC.

  14. Modulation of Human Cardiac TRPM7 Current by Extracellular Acidic pH Depends upon Extracellular Concentrations of Divalent Cations

    PubMed Central

    Mačianskienė, Regina; Almanaitytė, Mantė; Jekabsone, Aistė; Mubagwa, Kanigula

    2017-01-01

    TRPM7 channels participate in a variety of physiological/pathological processes. TRPM7 currents are modulated by protons but opposing effects of external pH (pHo) (potentiation vs inhibition) have been reported. TRPM7 has been less studied in human cardiomyocytes than in heart-derived non-cardiomyocyte cells. We used the whole-cell patch-clamp technique on isolated human atrial cardiomyocytes to investigate the impact of an acidic pHo on the TRPM7 current. With voltage-dependent and other ion channels inhibited, cardiomyocytes were challenged with external acidification in either the presence or the absence of extracellular divalent cations. TRPM7 outward and inward currents were increased by acidic pHo in extracellular medium containing Ca2+ and Mg2+, but suppressed by acidic pHo in the absence of extracellular Ca2+ and Mg2+. The potentiating effect in the presence of extracellular divalents occurred at pHo below 6 and was voltage-dependent. The inhibitory effect in the absence of extracellular divalents was already marked at pHo of 6 and was practically voltage-independent. TRPM7 current density was higher in cardiomyocytes from patients with history of coronary vascular disease and the difference compared to cardiomyocytes from patients without history of myocardial ischemia increased with acidic pHo. We demonstrate that proton-induced modification of TRPM7 currents depends on the presence of extracellular Ca2+ and Mg2+. Variability of the TRPM7 current density in human cardiomyocytes is related to the clinical history, being higher in atrial fibrillation and in ischemic cardiomyopathy. PMID:28129376

  15. Solute Transport of Negatively Charged Contrast Agents Across Articular Surface of Injured Cartilage.

    PubMed

    Kokkonen, H T; Chin, H C; Töyräs, J; Jurvelin, J S; Quinn, T M

    2017-04-01

    Solute transport through the extracellular matrix (ECM) is crucial to chondrocyte metabolism. Cartilage injury affects solute transport in cartilage due to alterations in ECM structure and solute-matrix interactions. Therefore, cartilage injury may be detected by using contrast agent-based clinical imaging. In the present study, effects of mechanical injury on transport of negatively charged contrast agents in cartilage were characterized. Using cartilage plugs injured by mechanical compression protocol, effective partition coefficients and diffusion fluxes of iodine- and gadolinium-based contrast agents were measured using high resolution microCT imaging. For all contrast agents studied, effective diffusion fluxes increased significantly, particularly at early times during the diffusion process (38 and 33% increase after 4 min, P < 0.05 for iodine and Gd-DTPA; and 76% increase after 10 min for diatrizoate, P < 0.05). Effective partition coefficients were unaffected in mechanically injured cartilage. Mechanical injury reduced PG content and collagen integrity in cartilage superficial zone. This study suggests that alterations in contrast agent diffusion flux, a non-equilibrium transport parameter, provides a more sensitive indicator for assessment of cartilage matrix integrity than partition coefficient and the equilibrium distribution of solute. These findings may help in developing clinical methods of contrast agent-based imaging to detect cartilage injury.

  16. Contrast enhancement in microplanar beam radiography.

    PubMed

    Company, F Z; Allen, B J; Mino, C

    1999-12-01

    In x-ray radiography, the target produces a useful shadow from absorption of the primary beam, while the scattered radiation into the off-target region decreases the contrast of the target image. A bundle of closely spaced microplanar beams can reduce the scattered radiation and give superior image contrast compared with a single macrobeam of the same dimensions. To further reduce the scattered radiation and increase the image contrast, we place an air gap between the tissue phantom and the detector. The primary and scattered photon flux of a single microplanar beam is measured as a function of thickness inside the phantom and in the air gap. Results show that a bundle of closely spaced, microplanar beams increase the image contrast by 22% and a 2 cm air gap decreases the scattered photon flux by about half, improving the contrast by an additional 16%. Thus an overall improvement of 41% in contrast can be achieved with microplanar beam radiography.

  17. Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: Therapeutic Potential of Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Vesicles.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Bin; Yeo, Ronne Wee Yeh; Tan, Kok Hian; Lim, Sai Kiang

    2016-02-06

    The intense research focus on stem and progenitor cells could be attributed to their differentiation potential to generate new cells to replace diseased or lost cells in many highly intractable degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer disease, multiple sclerosis, and heart diseases. However, experimental and clinical studies have increasingly attributed the therapeutic efficacy of these cells to their secretion. While stem and progenitor cells secreted many therapeutic molecules, none of these molecules singly or in combination could recapitulate the functional effects of stem cell transplantations. Recently, it was reported that extracellular vesicles (EVs) could recapitulate the therapeutic effects of stem cell transplantation. Based on the observations reported thus far, the prevailing hypothesis is that stem cell EVs exert their therapeutic effects by transferring biologically active molecules such as proteins, lipids, mRNA, and microRNA from the stem cells to injured or diseased cells. In this respect, stem cell EVs are similar to EVs from other cell types. They are both primarily vehicles for intercellular communication. Therefore, the differentiating factor is likely due to the composition of their cargo. The cargo of EVs from different cell types are known to include a common set of proteins and also proteins that reflect the cell source of the EVs and the physiological or pathological state of the cell source. Hence, elucidation of the stem cell EV cargo would provide an insight into the multiple physiological or biochemical changes necessary to affect the many reported stem cell-based therapeutic outcomes in a variety of experimental models and clinical trials.

  18. Multi-step contrast sensitivity gauge

    DOEpatents

    Quintana, Enrico C; Thompson, Kyle R; Moore, David G; Heister, Jack D; Poland, Richard W; Ellegood, John P; Hodges, George K; Prindville, James E

    2014-10-14

    An X-ray contrast sensitivity gauge is described herein. The contrast sensitivity gauge comprises a plurality of steps of varying thicknesses. Each step in the gauge includes a plurality of recesses of differing depths, wherein the depths are a function of the thickness of their respective step. An X-ray image of the gauge is analyzed to determine a contrast-to-noise ratio of a detector employed to generate the image.

  19. Clouds of high contrast on Uranus.

    PubMed

    Karkoschka, E

    1998-04-24

    Near-infrared images of Uranus taken with the Hubble Space Telescope in July and October 1997 revealed discrete clouds with contrasts exceeding 10 times the highest contrast observed before with other techniques. At visible wavelengths, these 10 clouds had lower contrasts than clouds seen by Voyager 2 in 1986. Uranus' rotational rates for southern latitudes were identical in 1986 and 1997. Clouds in northern latitudes rotate slightly more slowly than clouds in opposite southern latitudes.

  20. Effect of contrast on human speed perception

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stone, Leland S.; Thompson, Peter

    1992-01-01

    This study is part of an ongoing collaborative research effort between the Life Science and Human Factors Divisions at NASA ARC to measure the accuracy of human motion perception in order to predict potential errors in human perception/performance and to facilitate the design of display systems that minimize the effects of such deficits. The study describes how contrast manipulations can produce significant errors in human speed perception. Specifically, when two simultaneously presented parallel gratings are moving at the same speed within stationary windows, the lower-contrast grating appears to move more slowly. This contrast-induced misperception of relative speed is evident across a wide range of contrasts (2.5-50 percent) and does not appear to saturate (e.g., a 50 percent contrast grating appears slower than a 70 percent contrast grating moving at the same speed). The misperception is large: a 70 percent contrast grating must, on average, be slowed by 35 percent to match a 10 percent contrast grating moving at 2 deg/sec (N = 6). Furthermore, it is largely independent of the absolute contrast level and is a quasilinear function of log contrast ratio. A preliminary parametric study shows that, although spatial frequency has little effect, the relative orientation of the two gratings is important. Finally, the effect depends on the temporal presentation of the stimuli: the effects of contrast on perceived speed appears lessened when the stimuli to be matched are presented sequentially. These data constrain both physiological models of visual cortex and models of human performance. We conclude that viewing conditions that effect contrast, such as fog, may cause significant errors in speed judgments.

  1. Extracellular Xylella fastidiosa genomic DNA enhances biofilm formation in vitro

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Xylella fastidiosa (Xf) is a Gram negative, xylem-limited bacterium that causes Pierce’s Disease (PD) of grapevine, as well as other diseases of economically important crops and landscape plants. Many bacteria produce large amounts of extracellular DNA, which may function as a matrix component in b...

  2. The macrophage chemotactic activity of Edwardsiella tarda extracellular products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The chemoattractant capabilities of Edwardsiella tarda extracellular products (ECP) were investigated from two isolates, the virulent FL6-60 parent and less virulent RET-04 mutant. Chemotaxis and chemokinesis were assayed in vitro using blind well chambers with peritoneal macrophages obtained from ...

  3. EXTRACELLULAR HEAT SHOCK PROTEINS: A NEW LOCATION, A NEW FUNCTION

    PubMed Central

    De Maio, Antonio; Vazquez, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    The expression of heat shock proteins (hsp) is a basic and well conserved cellular response to an array of stresses. These proteins are involved in the repair of cellular damage induced by the stress, which is necessary for the salutary resolution from the insult. Moreover, they confer protection from subsequent insults, which has been coined stress tolerance. Since these proteins are expressed in subcellular compartments, it was thought that their function during stress conditions was circumscribed to the intracellular environment. However, it is now well established that hsp can also be present outside cells where they appear to display a function different than the well understood chaperone role. Extracellular hsp act as alert stress signals priming other cells, particularly of the immune system, to avoid the propagation of the insult and favor resolution. Since the majority of hsp do not possess a secretory peptide signal, they are likely be exported by a non-classical secretory pathway. Different mechanisms have been proposed to explain the export of hsp, including translocation across the plasma membrane and release associated with lipid vesicles, as well as the passive release after cell death by necrosis. Extracellular hsp appear in various flavors, including membrane-bound and membrane-free forms. All of these variants of extracellular hsp suggest that their interactions with cells may be quite diverse, both in target cell types and the activation signaling pathways. This review addresses some of our current knowledge about the release and relevance of extracellular hsp. PMID:23807250

  4. Biology and proteomics of extracellular vesicles: harnessing their clinical potential.

    PubMed

    D'Souza-Schorey, Crislyn; Di Vizio, Dolores

    2014-06-01

    Extracellular membrane vesicles have recently emerged as versatile mediators of intercellular communication, pathogenesis, drug and gene delivery and as potentially rich reservoirs of clinical biomarkers. Channeling their properties toward patient care is dependent on technological progress in approaches used for their analysis and molecular profiling.

  5. Extracellular NAD(+): a danger signal hindering regulatory T cells.

    PubMed

    Adriouch, Sahil; Haag, Friedrich; Boyer, Olivier; Seman, Michel; Koch-Nolte, Friedrich

    2012-11-01

    Endogenous danger signals released during cell damage contribute to alert the immune system. Typically, their release results in the activation and maturation of innate immune cells, and the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. In addition, extracellular NAD(+) stimulates immune responses by hindering regulatory T cells (Tregs), and could, therefore, represent the prototype of a new category of danger signals.

  6. Changes in Acetylcholine Extracellular Levels during Cognitive Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pepeu, Giancarlo; Giovannini, Maria Grazia

    2004-01-01

    Measuring the changes in neurotransmitter extracellular levels in discrete brain areas is considered a tool for identifying the neuronal systems involved in specific behavioral responses or cognitive processes. Acetylcholine (ACh) is the first neurotransmitter whose diffusion from the central nervous system was investigated and whose extracellular…

  7. Differential induction of redox sensitive extracellular phenolic amides in potato

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This study focuses on the differential induction of extracellular phenolic amides that accumulate in potato cell suspensions during the first few hours of the interaction between these plant cells and bacterial pathogens or pathogen-related elicitors. Using suspension cells of Solanum tuberosum we ...

  8. Model-based source localization of extracellular action potentials.

    PubMed

    Somogyvári, Zoltán; Zalányi, László; Ulbert, István; Erdi, Péter

    2005-09-30

    A new model-based analysis method was set up for revealing information encrypted in extracellular spatial potential patterns of neocortical action potentials. Spikes were measured by extracellular linear multiple microelectrode in vivo cat's primary auditory cortex and were analyzed based on current source density (CSD) distribution models. Validity of the monopole and other point source approximations were tested on the measured potential patterns by numerical fitting. We have found, that point source models could not provide accurate description of the measured patterns. We introduced a new model of the CSD distribution on a spiking cell, called counter-current model (CCM). This new model was shown to provide better description of the spatial current distribution of the cell during the initial negative deflection of the extracellular action potential, from the onset of the spike to the negative peak. The new model was tested on simulated extracellular potentials. We proved numerically, that all the parameters of the model could be determined accurately based on measurements. Thus, fitting of the CCM allowed extraction of these parameters from the measurements. Due to model fitting, CSD could be calculated with much higher accuracy as done with the traditional method because distance dependence of the spatial potential patterns was explicitly taken into consideration in our method. Average CSD distribution of the neocortical action potentials was calculated and spatial decay constant of the dendritic trees was determined by applying our new method.

  9. Extracellular matrix components direct porcine muscle stem cell behavior

    SciTech Connect

    Wilschut, Karlijn J.; Haagsman, Henk P.; Roelen, Bernard A.J.

    2010-02-01

    In muscle tissue, extracellular matrix proteins, together with the vasculature system, muscle-residence cells and muscle fibers, create the niche for muscle stem cells. The niche is important in controlling proliferation and directing differentiation of muscle stem cells to sustain muscle tissue. Mimicking the extracellular muscle environment improves tools exploring the behavior of primary muscle cells. Optimizing cell culture conditions to maintain muscle commitment is important in stem cell-based studies concerning toxicology screening, ex vivo skeletal muscle tissue engineering and in the enhancement of clinical efficiency. We used the muscle extracellular matrix proteins collagen type I, fibronectin, laminin, and also gelatin and Matrigel as surface coatings of tissue culture plastic to resemble the muscle extracellular matrix. Several important factors that determine myogenic commitment of the primary muscle cells were characterized by quantitative real-time RT-PCR and immunofluorescence. Adhesion of high PAX7 expressing satellite cells was improved if the cells were cultured on fibronectin or laminin coatings. Cells cultured on Matrigel and laminin coatings showed dominant integrin expression levels and exhibited an activated Wnt pathway. Under these conditions both stem cell proliferation and myogenic differentiation capacity were superior if compared to cells cultured on collagen type I, fibronectin and gelatin. In conclusion, Matrigel and laminin are the preferred coatings to sustain the proliferation and myogenic differentiation capacity of the primary porcine muscle stem cells, when cells are removed from their natural environment for in vitro culture.

  10. Sortilin mediates vascular calcification via its recruitment into extracellular vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Goettsch, Claudia; Hutcheson, Joshua D.; Aikawa, Masanori; Iwata, Hiroshi; Pham, Tan; Nykjaer, Anders; Kjolby, Mads; Rogers, Maximillian; Michel, Thomas; Shibasaki, Manabu; Hagita, Sumihiko; Kramann, Rafael; Singh, Sasha A.

    2016-01-01

    Vascular calcification is a common feature of major cardiovascular diseases. Extracellular vesicles participate in the formation of microcalcifications that are implicated in atherosclerotic plaque rupture; however, the mechanisms that regulate formation of calcifying extracellular vesicles remain obscure. Here, we have demonstrated that sortilin is a key regulator of smooth muscle cell (SMC) calcification via its recruitment to extracellular vesicles. Sortilin localized to calcifying vessels in human and mouse atheromata and participated in formation of microcalcifications in SMC culture. Sortilin regulated the loading of the calcification protein tissue nonspecific alkaline phosphatase (TNAP) into extracellular vesicles, thereby conferring its calcification potential. Furthermore, SMC calcification required Rab11-dependent trafficking and FAM20C/casein kinase 2–dependent C-terminal phosphorylation of sortilin. In a murine model, Sort1-deficiency reduced arterial calcification but did not affect bone mineralization. Additionally, transfer of sortilin-deficient BM cells to irradiated atherosclerotic mice did not affect vascular calcification, indicating a primary role of SMC-derived sortilin. Together, the results of this study identify sortilin phosphorylation as a potential therapeutic target for ectopic calcification/microcalcification and may clarify the mechanism that underlies the genetic association between the SORT1 gene locus and coronary artery calcification. PMID:26950419

  11. Extracellular Recognition of Oomycetes during Biotrophic Infection of Plants.

    PubMed

    Raaymakers, Tom M; Van den Ackerveken, Guido

    2016-01-01

    Extracellular recognition of pathogens by plants constitutes an important early detection system in plant immunity. Microbe-derived molecules, also named patterns, can be recognized by pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) on the host cell membrane that trigger plant immune responses. Most knowledge on extracellular pathogen detection by plants comes from research on bacterial and fungal pathogens. For oomycetes, that comprise some of the most destructive plant pathogens, mechanisms of extracellular pattern recognition have only emerged recently. These include newly recognized patterns, e.g., cellulose-binding elicitor lectin, necrosis and ethylene-inducing peptide 1-like proteins (NLPs), and glycoside hydrolase 12, as well as their receptors, e.g., the putative elicitin PRR elicitin response and the NLP PRR receptor-like protein 23. Immunity can also be triggered by the release of endogenous host-derived patterns, as a result of oomycete enzymes or damage. In this review we will describe the types of patterns, both pathogen-derived exogenous and plant-derived endogenous ones, and what is known about their extracellular detection during (hemi-)biotrophic oomycete infection of plants.

  12. Increased intra- and extracellular granzyme expression in patients with tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Laorden, M Isabel; Blok, Dana C; Kager, Liesbeth M; Hoogendijk, Arie J; van Mierlo, Gerard J; Lede, Ivar O; Rahman, Wahid; Afroz, Rumana; Ghose, Aniruddha; Visser, Caroline E; Md Zahed, Abu Shahed; Husain, Md Anwar; Alam, Khan Mashrequl; Chandra Barua, Pravat; Hassan, Mahtabuddin; Hossain, Ahmed; Tayab, Md Abu; Day, Nick; Dondorp, Arjen M; de Vos, Alex F; van der Poll, Tom

    2015-09-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) is an important cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Granzymes (gzms) are proteases mainly found in cytotoxic lymphocytes, but also extracellularly. While the role of gzms in target cell death has been widely characterized, considerable evidence points towards broader roles related to infectious and inflammatory responses. To investigate the expression of the gzms in TB, intracellular gzms A, B and K were measured by flow cytometry in lymphocyte populations from peripheral blood mononuclear cells from 18 TB patients and 12 healthy donors from Bangladesh, and extracellular levels of gzmA and B were measured in serum from 58 TB patients and 31 healthy controls. TB patients showed increased expression of gzmA in CD8(+) T, CD4(+) T and CD56(+) T, but not NK, cells, and of gzmB in CD8(+) T cells, when compared to controls. GzmK expression was not altered in TB patients in any lymphocyte subset. The extracellular levels of gzmA and, to a lesser extent, of gzmB, were increased in TB patients, but did not correlate with intracellular gzm expression in lymphocyte subsets. Our results reveal enhanced intra- and extracellular expression of gzmA and B in patients with pulmonary TB, suggesting that gzms are part of the host response to tuberculosis.

  13. Filtration recovery of extracellular DNA from environmental water samples

    EPA Science Inventory

    qPCR methods are able to analyze DNA from microbes within hours of collecting water samples, providing the promptest notification and public awareness possible when unsafe pathogenic levels are reached. Health risk, however, may be overestimated by the presence of extracellular ...

  14. Nucleases from Prevotella intermedia can degrade neutrophil extracellular traps.

    PubMed

    Doke, M; Fukamachi, H; Morisaki, H; Arimoto, T; Kataoka, H; Kuwata, H

    2016-08-01

    Periodontitis is an inflammatory disease caused by periodontal bacteria in subgingival plaque. These bacteria are able to colonize the periodontal region by evading the host immune response. Neutrophils, the host's first line of defense against infection, use various strategies to kill invading pathogens, including neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs). These are extracellular net-like fibers comprising DNA and antimicrobial components such as histones, LL-37, defensins, myeloperoxidase, and neutrophil elastase from neutrophils that disarm and kill bacteria extracellularly. Bacterial nuclease degrades the NETs to escape NET killing. It has now been shown that extracellular nucleases enable bacteria to evade this host antimicrobial mechanism, leading to increased pathogenicity. Here, we compared the DNA degradation activity of major Gram-negative periodontopathogenic bacteria, Porphyromonas gingivalis, Prevotella intermedia, Fusobacterium nucleatum, and Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans. We found that Pr. intermedia showed the highest DNA degradation activity. A genome search of Pr. intermedia revealed the presence of two genes, nucA and nucD, putatively encoding secreted nucleases, although their enzymatic and biological activities are unknown. We cloned nucA- and nucD-encoding nucleases from Pr. intermedia ATCC 25611 and characterized their gene products. Recombinant NucA and NucD digested DNA and RNA, which required both Mg(2+) and Ca(2+) for optimal activity. In addition, NucA and NucD were able to degrade the DNA matrix comprising NETs.

  15. Dissimilatory reduction of extracellular electron acceptors in anaerobic respiration.

    PubMed

    Richter, Katrin; Schicklberger, Marcus; Gescher, Johannes

    2012-02-01

    An extension of the respiratory chain to the cell surface is necessary to reduce extracellular electron acceptors like ferric iron or manganese oxides. In the past few years, more and more compounds were revealed to be reduced at the surface of the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria, and the list does not seem to have an end so far. Shewanella as well as Geobacter strains are model organisms to discover the biochemistry that enables the dissimilatory reduction of extracellular electron acceptors. In both cases, c-type cytochromes are essential electron-transferring proteins. They make the journey of respiratory electrons from the cytoplasmic membrane through periplasm and over the outer membrane possible. Outer membrane cytochromes have the ability to catalyze the last step of the respiratory chains. Still, recent discoveries provided evidence that they are accompanied by further factors that allow or at least facilitate extracellular reduction. This review gives a condensed overview of our current knowledge of extracellular respiration, highlights recent discoveries, and discusses critically the influence of different strategies for terminal electron transfer reactions.

  16. Regulation of Osteoblast Survival by the Extracellular Matrix and Gravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Globus. Ruth K.; Almeida, Eduardo A. C.; Searby, Nancy D.; Bowley, Susan M. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    Spaceflight adversely affects the skeleton, posing a substantial risk to astronaut's health during long duration missions. The reduced bone mass observed in growing animals following spaceflight is due at least in part to inadequate bone formation by osteoblasts. Thus, it is of central importance to identify basic cellular mechanisms underlying normal bone formation. The fundamental ideas underlying our research are that interactions between extracellular matrix proteins, integrin adhesion receptors, cytoplasmic signaling and cytoskeletal proteins are key ingredients for the proper functioning of osteoblasts, and that gravity impacts these interactions. As an in vitro model system we used primary fetal rat calvarial cells which faithfully recapitulate osteoblast differentiation characteristically observed in vivo. We showed that specific integrin receptors ((alpha)3(beta)1), ((alpha)5(beta)1), ((alpha)8(betal)1) and extracellular matrix proteins (fibronectin, laminin) were needed for the differentiation of immature osteoblasts. In the course of maturation, cultured osteoblasts switched from depending on fibronectin and laminin for differentiation to depending on these proteins for their very survival. Furthermore, we found that manipulating the gravity vector using ground-based models resulted in activation of key intracellular survival signals generated by integrin/extracellular matrix interactions. We are currently testing the in vivo relevance of some of these observations using targeted transgenic technology. In conclusion, mechanical factors including gravity may participate in regulating survival via cellular interactions with the extracellular matrix. This leads us to speculate that microgravity adversely affects the survival of osteoblasts and contributes to spaceflight-induced osteoporosis.

  17. Another dimension to calcium signaling: a look at extracellular calcium.

    PubMed

    Hofer, Aldebaran M

    2005-03-01

    Cell biologists know the calcium ion best as a vital intracellular second messenger that governs countless cellular functions. However, the recent identification of cell-surface detectors for extracellular Ca(2+) has prompted consideration of whether Ca(2+) also functions as a signaling molecule in the extracellular milieu. The cast of Ca(2+) sensors includes the well-characterized extracellular-Ca(2+)-sensing receptor, a G-protein-coupled receptor originally isolated from the parathyroid gland. In addition, other receptors, channels and membrane proteins, such as gap junction hemichannels, metabotropic glutamate receptors, HERG K(+) channels and the receptor Notch, are all sensitive to external [Ca(2+)] fluctuations. A recently cloned Ca(2+) sensor (CAS) in Arabidopsis extends this concept to the plant kingdom. Emerging evidence indicates that [Ca(2+)] in the local microenvironment outside the cell undergoes alterations potentially sufficient to exert biological actions through these sensor proteins. The extracellular space might therefore constitute a much more dynamic Ca(2+) signaling compartment than previously appreciated.

  18. Extracellular Recognition of Oomycetes during Biotrophic Infection of Plants

    PubMed Central

    Raaymakers, Tom M.; Van den Ackerveken, Guido

    2016-01-01

    Extracellular recognition of pathogens by plants constitutes an important early detection system in plant immunity. Microbe-derived molecules, also named patterns, can be recognized by pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) on the host cell membrane that trigger plant immune responses. Most knowledge on extracellular pathogen detection by plants comes from research on bacterial and fungal pathogens. For oomycetes, that comprise some of the most destructive plant pathogens, mechanisms of extracellular pattern recognition have only emerged recently. These include newly recognized patterns, e.g., cellulose-binding elicitor lectin, necrosis and ethylene-inducing peptide 1-like proteins (NLPs), and glycoside hydrolase 12, as well as their receptors, e.g., the putative elicitin PRR elicitin response and the NLP PRR receptor-like protein 23. Immunity can also be triggered by the release of endogenous host-derived patterns, as a result of oomycete enzymes or damage. In this review we will describe the types of patterns, both pathogen-derived exogenous and plant-derived endogenous ones, and what is known about their extracellular detection during (hemi-)biotrophic oomycete infection of plants. PMID:27446136

  19. The clinical applications of contrast echocardiography.

    PubMed

    Olszewski, Robert; Timperley, Jon; Szmigielski, Cezary; Cezary, Szmigielski; Monaghan, Mark; Nihoyannopoulos, Petros; Nihoyannopoulis, Petros; Senior, Roxy; Becher, Harald

    2007-06-01

    Ultrasound contrast agents are approved for opacification of the heart chambers and to improve endocardial border definition. The myocardial contrast enhancement is also very useful for assessing thickening of the myocardium and myocardial perfusion. Several multicentre and numerous single-centre trials have demonstrated the usefulness of contrast echocardiography in clinical practice. Contrast echocardiography is probably one of the best validated echocardiographic techniques. Improved accuracy of contrast-enhanced images is not restricted to patients with a poor baseline image quality. Even with an optimal baseline image quality the borders are not as well defined as after LV opacification. Usage of contrast can improve image alignment and helps to avoid off-axis scanning. Contrast studies are particularly useful when a precise measurement of LV function is needed: 1. To decide about the need of implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs), cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT), 2. Follow-up of patients with moderate valvular disease and decision for surgical treatment, 3. Selection and monitoring of patients undergoing chemotherapy with cardiotoxic drugs, 4. Assessment of LV function in patients in intensive care and coronary care units. Optimal endocardial border delineation is crucial and often can be achieved only by ultrasound contrast: 1. Assessment of LV thrombi and masses, 2. Left ventricular non-compaction/apical hypertrophy, 3. Right ventricular dysplasia, right ventricular thrombus, 4. Stress echocardiography and regional wall motion assessment. Future echocardiography will be more 3D and more quantitative than current echocardiography. And contrast echocardiography has already proven its value for both applications.

  20. Optimization of Liver Decellularization Maintains Extracellular Matrix Micro-Architecture and Composition Predisposing to Effective Cell Seeding

    PubMed Central

    Maghsoudlou, Panagiotis; Georgiades, Fanourios; Smith, Holly; Milan, Anna; Shangaris, Panicos; Urbani, Luca; Loukogeorgakis, Stavros P.; Lombardi, Benedetta; Mazza, Giuseppe; Hagen, Charlotte; Sebire, Neil J.; Turmaine, Mark; Eaton, Simon; Olivo, Alessandro; Godovac-Zimmermann, Jasminka; Pinzani, Massimo; Gissen, Paul; De Coppi, Paolo

    2016-01-01

    Hepatic tissue engineering using decellularized scaffolds is a potential therapeutic alternative to conventional transplantation. However, scaffolds are usually obtained using decellularization protocols that destroy the extracellular matrix (ECM) and hamper clinical translation. We aim to develop a decellularization technique that reliably maintains hepatic microarchitecture and ECM components. Isolated rat livers were decellularized by detergent-enzymatic technique with (EDTA-DET) or without EDTA (DET). Histology, DNA quantification and proteomics confirmed decellularization with further DNA reduction with the addition of EDTA. Quantification, histology, immunostaining, and proteomics demonstrated preservation of extracellular matrix components in both scaffolds with a higher amount of collagen and glycosaminoglycans in the EDTA-DET scaffold. Scanning electron microscopy and X-ray phase contrast imaging showed microarchitecture preservation, with EDTA-DET scaffolds more tightly packed. DET scaffold seeding with a hepatocellular cell line demonstrated complete repopulation in 14 days, with cells proliferating at that time. Decellularization using DET preserves microarchitecture and extracellular matrix components whilst allowing for cell growth for up to 14 days. Addition of EDTA creates a denser, more compact matrix. Transplantation of the scaffolds and scaling up of the methodology are the next steps for successful hepatic tissue engineering. PMID:27159223

  1. Flavin Electron Shuttles Dominate Extracellular Electron Transfer by Shewanella oneidensis

    PubMed Central

    Kotloski, Nicholas J.; Gralnick, Jeffrey A.

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT Shewanella oneidensis strain MR-1 is widely studied for its ability to respire a diverse array of soluble and insoluble electron acceptors. The ability to breathe insoluble substrates is defined as extracellular electron transfer and can occur via direct contact or by electron shuttling in S. oneidensis. To determine the contribution of flavin electron shuttles in extracellular electron transfer, a transposon mutagenesis screen was performed with S. oneidensis to identify mutants unable to secrete flavins. A multidrug and toxin efflux transporter encoded by SO_0702 was identified and renamed bfe (bacterial flavin adenine dinucleotide [FAD] exporter) based on phenotypic characterization. Deletion of bfe resulted in a severe decrease in extracellular flavins, while overexpression of bfe increased the concentration of extracellular flavins. Strains lacking bfe had no defect in reduction of soluble Fe(III), but these strains were deficient in the rate of insoluble Fe(III) oxide reduction, which was alleviated by the addition of exogenous flavins. To test a different insoluble electron acceptor, graphite electrode bioreactors were set up to measure current produced by wild-type S. oneidensis and the Δbfe mutant. With the same concentration of supplemented flavins, the two strains produced similar amounts of current. However, when exogenous flavins were not supplemented to bioreactors, bfe mutant strains produced significantly less current than the wild type. We have demonstrated that flavin electron shuttling accounts for ~75% of extracellular electron transfer to insoluble substrates by S. oneidensis and have identified the first FAD transporter in bacteria. PMID:23322638

  2. Nanofiltration concentration of extracellular glutathione produced by engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Kengo; Hara, Kiyotaka Y; Kawaguchi, Hideo; Sazuka, Takashi; Ogino, Chiaki; Kondo, Akihiko

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to optimize extracellular glutathione production by a Saccharomyces cerevisiae engineered strain and to concentrate the extracellular glutathione by membrane separation processes, including ultrafiltration (UF) and nanofiltration (NF). Synthetic defined (SD) medium containing 20 g L(-1) glucose was fermented for 48 h; the fermentation liquid was passed through an UF membrane to remove macromolecules. Glutathione in this permeate was concentrated for 48 h to 545.1 ± 33.6 mg L(-1) using the NF membrane; this was a significantly higher concentration than that obtained with yeast extract peptone dextrose (YPD) medium following 96 h NF concentration (217.9 ± 57.4 mg L(-1)). This higher glutathione concentration results from lower cellular growth in SD medium (final OD600 = 6.9 ± 0.1) than in YPD medium (final OD600 = 11.0 ± 0.6) and thus higher production of extracellular glutathione (16.0 ± 1.3 compared to 9.2 ± 2.1 mg L(-1) in YPD medium, respectively). Similar fermentation and membrane processing of sweet sorghum juice containing 20 g L(-1) total sugars provided 240.3 ± 60.6 mg L(-1) glutathione. Increased extracellular production of glutathione by this engineered strain in SD medium and subsequent UF permeation and NF concentration in shortend time may help realize industrial recovery of extracellular glutathione.

  3. Statistical analysis of Chinese phonemic contrast.

    PubMed

    Yu, Shuiyuan; Xu, Chunshan; Liu, Haitao; Chen, Yudong

    2011-01-01

    Two phonemes that may induce minimal pairs constitute a phonemic contrast. Some phonemic contrasts may disappear for various reasons, which, nevertheless, does not seem to seriously impede linguistic communication. Does it mean that the disappeared phonemic contrasts are unimportant? In our study, we calculated the proportions (here termed degree of contrast) of minimal pairs to the words in which the two contrastive phonemes occur and explored the role of phonemic contrasts in the phonemic combinations. The degree of contrast of phonemes reflects the relation between phonemes. Our results indicate that (1) the average degree of contrast of Chinese phonemes declines exponentially with the increase in the number of syllables, rapidly approaching zero; (2) the average degree of contrast of Chinese consonants that differ from each other in only one distinctive feature and of the consonants that are absent in some Chinese dialects is significantly higher than that of other consonants; (3) the degree of contrast of Chinese consonants that differ from each other in only one distinctive feature is not significantly different from that of the consonants absent in some Chinese dialects; (4) Chinese phonemic combinations exhibit high degree of sparsity, which increases exponentially with the number of syllables and rapidly approaches 1. All these results show that the high degree of sparsity and the low degree of contrast of human languages not only leave enough room for new words, new dialects and new languages to appear but also contribute to effective and reliable communication, because a few phonemic mistakes are not likely to cause wrong decoding (sound recognition) and failed communication.

  4. Motion contrast using optical coherence tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fingler, Jeffrey Paul

    Diagnosis of ophthalmic diseases like age-related macular degeneration is very important for treatment of the disease as well as the development of future treatments. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an optical interference technique which can measure the three-dimensional structural information of the reflecting layers within a sample. In retinal imaging, OCT is used as the primary diagnostic tool for structural abnormalities such as retinal holes and detachments. The contrast within the images of this technique is based upon reflectivity changes from different regions of the retina. This thesis demonstrates the developments of methods used to produce additional contrast to the structural OCT images based on the tiny fluctuations of motion experienced by the mobile scatterers within a sample. Motion contrast was observed for motions smaller than 50 nm in images of a variety of samples. Initial contrast method demonstrations used Brownian motion differences to separate regions of a mobile Intralipid solution from a static agarose gel, chosen in concentration to minimize reflectivity contrast. Zebrafish embryos in the range of 3-4 days post fertilization were imaged using several motion contrast methods to determine the capabilities of identifying regions of vascular flow. Vasculature identification was demonstrated in zebrafish for blood vessels of all orientations as small as 10 microns in diameter. Mouse retinal imaging utilized the same motion contrast methods to determine the contrast capabilities for motions associated with vasculature within the retina. Improved contrast imaging techniques demonstrated comparable images to fluorescein angiography, the gold standard of retinal vascular imaging. Future studies can improve the demonstrated contrast analysis techniques and apply them towards human retinal motion contrast imaging for ophthalmic diagnostic purposes.

  5. High contrast single molecule tracking in the pericellular coat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scrimgeour, Jan; McLane, Louis T.; Curtis, Jennifer E.

    2014-03-01

    The pericellular coat is a robust, hydrated, polymer brush-like structure that can extend several micrometers into the extracellular space around living cells. By controlling access to the cell surface, acting as a filter and storage reservoir for proteins, and actively controlling tissue-immune system interactions, the cell coat performs many important functions at scales ranging from the single cell to whole tissues. The cell coat consists of a malleable backbone - the large polysaccharide hyaluronic acid (HA) - with its structure, material properties, and ultimately its bio-functionality tuned by a diverse set of HA binding proteins. These proteins add charge, cross-links and growth factor-like ligands to the coat To probe the dynamic behavior of this soft biomaterial we have used high contrast single molecule imaging, based on highly inclined laser illumination, to observe individual fluorescently labeled HA binding proteins within the cell coat. Our work focuses on the cell coat of living chondrocyte (cartilage) cells, and in particular the effect of the large, highly charged, protein aggrecan on the properties of the coat. Through single molecule imaging we observe that aggrecan is tightly tethered to HA, and plays an important role in cell coat extension and stiffening.

  6. A common theme in extracellular fluids of beetles: extracellular superoxide dismutases crucial for balancing ROS in response to microbial challenge.

    PubMed

    Gretscher, René R; Streicher, Priska E; Strauß, Anja S; Wielsch, Natalie; Stock, Magdalena; Wang, Ding; Boland, Wilhelm; Burse, Antje

    2016-04-12

    Extracellular Cu/Zn superoxide dismutases (SODs) are critical for balancing the level of reactive oxygen species in the extracellular matrix of eukaryotes. In the present study we have detected constitutive SOD activity in the haemolymph and defensive secretions of different leaf beetle species. Exemplarily, we have chosen the mustard leaf beetle, Phaedon cochleariae, as representative model organism to investigate the role of extracellular SODs in antimicrobial defence. Qualitative and quantitative proteome analyses resulted in the identification of two extracellular Cu/Zn SODs in the haemolymph and one in the defensive secretions of juvenile P. cochleariae. Furthermore, quantitative expression studies indicated fat body tissue and defensive glands as the main synthesis sites of these SODs. Silencing of the two SODs revealed one of them, PcSOD3.1, as the only relevant enzyme facilitating SOD activity in haemolymph and defensive secretions in vivo. Upon challenge with the entomopathogenic fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae, PcSOD3.1-deficient larvae exhibited a significantly higher mortality compared to other SOD-silenced groups. Hence, our results serve as a basis for further research on SOD regulated host-pathogen interactions. In defensive secretions PcSOD3.1-silencing affected neither deterrent production nor activity against fungal growth. Instead, we propose another antifungal mechanism based on MRJP/yellow proteins in the defensive exudates.

  7. A common theme in extracellular fluids of beetles: extracellular superoxide dismutases crucial for balancing ROS in response to microbial challenge

    PubMed Central

    Gretscher, René R.; Streicher, Priska E.; Strauß, Anja S.; Wielsch, Natalie; Stock, Magdalena; Wang, Ding; Boland, Wilhelm; Burse, Antje

    2016-01-01

    Extracellular Cu/Zn superoxide dismutases (SODs) are critical for balancing the level of reactive oxygen species in the extracellular matrix of eukaryotes. In the present study we have detected constitutive SOD activity in the haemolymph and defensive secretions of different leaf beetle species. Exemplarily, we have chosen the mustard leaf beetle, Phaedon cochleariae, as representative model organism to investigate the role of extracellular SODs in antimicrobial defence. Qualitative and quantitative proteome analyses resulted in the identification of two extracellular Cu/Zn SODs in the haemolymph and one in the defensive secretions of juvenile P. cochleariae. Furthermore, quantitative expression studies indicated fat body tissue and defensive glands as the main synthesis sites of these SODs. Silencing of the two SODs revealed one of them, PcSOD3.1, as the only relevant enzyme facilitating SOD activity in haemolymph and defensive secretions in vivo. Upon challenge with the entomopathogenic fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae, PcSOD3.1-deficient larvae exhibited a significantly higher mortality compared to other SOD-silenced groups. Hence, our results serve as a basis for further research on SOD regulated host-pathogen interactions. In defensive secretions PcSOD3.1-silencing affected neither deterrent production nor activity against fungal growth. Instead, we propose another antifungal mechanism based on MRJP/yellow proteins in the defensive exudates. PMID:27068683

  8. Meeting report: discussions and preliminary findings on extracellular RNA measurement methods from laboratories in the NIH Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium.

    PubMed

    Laurent, Louise C; Abdel-Mageed, Asim B; Adelson, P David; Arango, Jorge; Balaj, Leonora; Breakefield, Xandra; Carlson, Elizabeth; Carter, Bob S; Majem, Blanca; Chen, Clark C; Cocucci, Emanuele; Danielson, Kirsty; Courtright, Amanda; Das, Saumya; Abd Elmageed, Zakaria Y; Enderle, Daniel; Ezrin, Alan; Ferrer, Marc; Freedman, Jane; Galas, David; Gandhi, Roopali; Huentelman, Matthew J; Van Keuren-Jensen, Kendall; Kalani, Yashar; Kim, Yong; Krichevsky, Anna M; Lai, Charles; Lal-Nag, Madhu; Laurent, Clara D; Leonardo, Trevor; Li, Feng; Malenica, Ivana; Mondal, Debasis; Nejad, Parham; Patel, Tushar; Raffai, Robert L; Rubio, Renee; Skog, Johan; Spetzler, Robert; Sun, Jie; Tanriverdi, Kahraman; Vickers, Kasey; Wang, Liang; Wang, Yaoyu; Wei, Zhiyun; Weiner, Howard L; Wong, David; Yan, Irene K; Yeri, Ashish; Gould, Stephen

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular RNAs (exRNAs) have been identified in all tested biofluids and have been associated with a variety of extracellular vesicles, ribonucleoprotein complexes and lipoprotein complexes. Much of the interest in exRNAs lies in the fact that they may serve as signalling molecules between cells, their potential to serve as biomarkers for prediction and diagnosis of disease and the possibility that exRNAs or the extracellular particles that carry them might be used for therapeutic purposes. Among the most significant bottlenecks to progress in this field is the lack of robust and standardized methods for collection and processing of biofluids, separation of different types of exRNA-containing particles and isolation and analysis of exRNAs. The Sample and Assay Standards Working Group of the Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium is a group of laboratories funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health to develop such methods. In our first joint endeavour, we held a series of conference calls and in-person meetings to survey the methods used among our members, placed them in the context of the current literature and used our findings to identify areas in which the identification of robust methodologies would promote rapid advancements in the exRNA field.

  9. Meeting report: discussions and preliminary findings on extracellular RNA measurement methods from laboratories in the NIH Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium

    PubMed Central

    Laurent, Louise C.; Abdel-Mageed, Asim B.; Adelson, P. David; Arango, Jorge; Balaj, Leonora; Breakefield, Xandra; Carlson, Elizabeth; Carter, Bob S.; Majem, Blanca; Chen, Clark C.; Cocucci, Emanuele; Danielson, Kirsty; Courtright, Amanda; Das, Saumya; Elmageed, Zakaria Y. Abd; Enderle, Daniel; Ezrin, Alan; Ferrer, Marc; Freedman, Jane; Galas, David; Gandhi, Roopali; Huentelman, Matthew J.; Van Keuren-Jensen, Kendall; Kalani, Yashar; Kim, Yong; Krichevsky, Anna M.; Lai, Charles; Lal-Nag, Madhu; Laurent, Clara D.; Leonardo, Trevor; Li, Feng; Malenica, Ivana; Mondal, Debasis; Nejad, Parham; Patel, Tushar; Raffai, Robert L.; Rubio, Renee; Skog, Johan; Spetzler, Robert; Sun, Jie; Tanriverdi, Kahraman; Vickers, Kasey; Wang, Liang; Wang, Yaoyu; Wei, Zhiyun; Weiner, Howard L.; Wong, David; Yan, Irene K.; Yeri, Ashish; Gould, Stephen

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular RNAs (exRNAs) have been identified in all tested biofluids and have been associated with a variety of extracellular vesicles, ribonucleoprotein complexes and lipoprotein complexes. Much of the interest in exRNAs lies in the fact that they may serve as signalling molecules between cells, their potential to serve as biomarkers for prediction and diagnosis of disease and the possibility that exRNAs or the extracellular particles that carry them might be used for therapeutic purposes. Among the most significant bottlenecks to progress in this field is the lack of robust and standardized methods for collection and processing of biofluids, separation of different types of exRNA-containing particles and isolation and analysis of exRNAs. The Sample and Assay Standards Working Group of the Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium is a group of laboratories funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health to develop such methods. In our first joint endeavour, we held a series of conference calls and in-person meetings to survey the methods used among our members, placed them in the context of the current literature and used our findings to identify areas in which the identification of robust methodologies would promote rapid advancements in the exRNA field. PMID:26320937

  10. Contrastive Analysis: Is It a Living Fossil?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abbas, Ali K.

    1995-01-01

    This paper discusses the validity and utility of contrastive analysis for language teaching, focusing on the utility of contrastive analysis over error analysis in analyzing adverbial positioning in sentences produced by two groups of native speakers of English and Arabic. Contains 13 references. (MDM)

  11. Comparison and Contrast in Perceptual Categorization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hampton, James A.; Estes, Zachary; Simmons, Claire L.

    2005-01-01

    People categorized pairs of perceptual stimuli that varied in both category membership and pairwise similarity. Experiments 1 and 2 showed categorization of 1 color of a pair to be reliably contrasted from that of the other. This similarity-based contrast effect occurred only when the context stimulus was relevant for the categorization of the…

  12. In Vivo Contrast-Enhanced MR Imaging of Direct Infusion into Rat Peripheral Nerves

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiaoming; Astary, Garrett W.; Mareci, Thomas H.; Sarntinoranont, Malisa

    2011-01-01

    Direct infusion, or convection-enhanced delivery (CED), into peripheral nerves may provide a method for delivering substances to the intrathecal space or specific fiber bundles entering the spinal cord. To better understand this potential delivery technique, we have characterized the extracellular transport of macromolecular agents from peripheral nerves to the spinal cord in magnetic resonance (MR) imaging studies. High-resolution dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging at 11.1 T was used to monitor and characterize in vivo the extracellular transport dynamics of Gd-DTPA-albumin tracer during CED into rat sciatic nerves. Extracellular tracers followed peripheral nerves towards the spinal cord and at vertebral levels L4 and L5 appeared to enter the cerebrospinal fluid and nerve roots. Uptake directly into spinal cord tissues (white and gray matter) appeared to be limited. Spatial distribution patterns within spinal cord regions depended on CED factors, including cannula placement, and underlying tissue structures including peripheral nerve branching and membrane structures at nerve root entry. The applied MR techniques allowed for visualization and quantification of tracer spread and distribution within the rat spinal cord region. The results show that CED into peripheral nerves provides an alternative route for delivering therapeutics to nerve roots and the intrathecal space surrounding the spinal cord. PMID:21809145

  13. Evidence of eosinophil extracellular trap cell death in COPD: does it represent the trigger that switches on the disease?

    PubMed Central

    Uribe Echevarría, Loli; Leimgruber, Carolina; García González, Jorge; Nevado, Alberto; Álvarez, Ruth; García, Luciana N; Quintar, Amado A; Maldonado, Cristina A

    2017-01-01

    In spite of the numerous studies on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the cellular and molecular basis of the disease’s development remain unclear. Neutrophils and eosinophils are known to be key players in COPD. Recently, neutrophil extracellular trap cell death (NETosis), a mechanism due to decondensation and extrusion of chromatin to form extracellular traps, has been demonstrated in COPD. However, there is limited knowledge about eosinophil extracellular trap cell death (EETosis) and its role in the pathogenesis of COPD. The aim of this study was to evaluate EETosis in stable COPD. Induced sputum obtained from healthy smokers and low exacerbation risk COPD A or B group patients or high exacerbation risk COPD C or D group patients were included. Samples were examined using electron microscopy and immunofluorescence. Healthy smokers (n=10) and COPD A (n=19) group exhibited neutrophilic or paucigranulocytic phenotypes, with NETosis being absent in these patients. In contrast, COPD B (n=29), with eosinophilic or mixed phenotypes, showed EETosis and incipient NETosis. COPD C (n=18) and COPD D groups (n=13) were differentiated from low exacerbation rate-COPD group by the abundant cellular debris, with COPD C group having an eosinophilic pattern and numerous cells undergoing EETosis. A hallmark of this group was the abundant released membranes that often appeared phagocytosed by neutrophils, which coincidentally exhibited early NETosis changes. The COPD D group included patients with a neutrophilic or mixed pattern, with abundant neutrophil extracellular trap-derived material. This study is the first to demonstrate EETosis at different stages of stable COPD. The results suggest a role for eosinophils in COPD pathophysiology, especially at the beginning and during the persistence of the disease, regardless of whether the patient quit smoking, with EETosis debris probably triggering uncontrolled NETosis. The main target of these findings should be young

  14. Escaping Underground Nets: Extracellular DNases Degrade Plant Extracellular Traps and Contribute to Virulence of the Plant Pathogenic Bacterium Ralstonia solanacearum

    PubMed Central

    Tran, Tuan Minh; MacIntyre, April; Hawes, Martha; Allen, Caitilyn

    2016-01-01

    Plant root border cells have been recently recognized as an important physical defense against soil-borne pathogens. Root border cells produce an extracellular matrix of protein, polysaccharide and DNA that functions like animal neutrophil extracellular traps to immobilize pathogens. Exposing pea root border cells to the root-infecting bacterial wilt pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum triggered release of DNA-containing extracellular traps in a flagellin-dependent manner. These traps rapidly immobilized the pathogen and killed some cells, but most of the entangled bacteria eventually escaped. The R. solanacearum genome encodes two putative extracellular DNases (exDNases) that are expressed during pathogenesis, suggesting that these exDNases contribute to bacterial virulence by enabling the bacterium to degrade and escape root border cell traps. We tested this hypothesis with R. solanacearum deletion mutants lacking one or both of these nucleases, named NucA and NucB. Functional studies with purified proteins revealed that NucA and NucB are non-specific endonucleases and that NucA is membrane-associated and cation-dependent. Single ΔnucA and ΔnucB mutants and the ΔnucA/B double mutant all had reduced virulence on wilt-susceptible tomato plants in a naturalistic soil-soak inoculation assay. The ΔnucA/B mutant was out-competed by the wild-type strain in planta and was less able to stunt root growth or colonize plant stems. Further, the double nuclease mutant could not escape from root border cells in vitro and was defective in attachment to pea roots. Taken together, these results demonstrate that extracellular DNases are novel virulence factors that help R. solanacearum successfully overcome plant defenses to infect plant roots and cause bacterial wilt disease. PMID:27336156

  15. Towards Dynamic Contrast Specific Ultrasound Tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demi, Libertario; van Sloun, Ruud J. G.; Wijkstra, Hessel; Mischi, Massimo

    2016-10-01

    We report on the first study demonstrating the ability of a recently-developed, contrast-enhanced, ultrasound imaging method, referred to as cumulative phase delay imaging (CPDI), to image and quantify ultrasound contrast agent (UCA) kinetics. Unlike standard ultrasound tomography, which exploits changes in speed of sound and attenuation, CPDI is based on a marker specific to UCAs, thus enabling dynamic contrast-specific ultrasound tomography (DCS-UST). For breast imaging, DCS-UST will lead to a more practical, faster, and less operator-dependent imaging procedure compared to standard echo-contrast, while preserving accurate imaging of contrast kinetics. Moreover, a linear relation between CPD values and ultrasound second-harmonic intensity was measured (coefficient of determination = 0.87). DCS-UST can find clinical applications as a diagnostic method for breast cancer localization, adding important features to multi-parametric ultrasound tomography of the breast.

  16. Towards Dynamic Contrast Specific Ultrasound Tomography

    PubMed Central

    Demi, Libertario; Van Sloun, Ruud J. G.; Wijkstra, Hessel; Mischi, Massimo

    2016-01-01

    We report on the first study demonstrating the ability of a recently-developed, contrast-enhanced, ultrasound imaging method, referred to as cumulative phase delay imaging (CPDI), to image and quantify ultrasound contrast agent (UCA) kinetics. Unlike standard ultrasound tomography, which exploits changes in speed of sound and attenuation, CPDI is based on a marker specific to UCAs, thus enabling dynamic contrast-specific ultrasound tomography (DCS-UST). For breast imaging, DCS-UST will lead to a more practical, faster, and less operator-dependent imaging procedure compared to standard echo-contrast, while preserving accurate imaging of contrast kinetics. Moreover, a linear relation between CPD values and ultrasound second-harmonic intensity was measured (coefficient of determination = 0.87). DCS-UST can find clinical applications as a diagnostic method for breast cancer localization, adding important features to multi-parametric ultrasound tomography of the breast. PMID:27703251

  17. Contrast-Enhanced Digital Mammography and Angiogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Rosado-Mendez, I.; Palma, B. A.; Villasenor, Y.; Benitez-Bribiesca, L.; Brandan, M. E.

    2007-11-26

    Angiogenesis could be a means for pouring contrast media around tumors. In this work, optimization of radiological parameters for contrast-enhanced subtraction techniques in mammography has been performed. A modification of Lemacks' analytical formalism was implemented to model the X-ray absorption in the breast with contrast medium and detection by a digital image receptor. Preliminary results of signal-to-noise ratio analysis show the advantage of subtracting two images taken at different energies, one prior and one posterior to the injection of contrast medium. Preliminary experimental results using a custom-made phantom have shown good agreement with calculations. A proposal is presented for the clinical application of the optimized technique, which aims at finding correlations between angiogenesis indicators and dynamic variables of contrast medium uptake.

  18. High-performance nanostructured MR contrast probes

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Fengqin; Joshi, Hrushikesh M.; Dravid, Vinayak P.; Meade, Thomas J.

    2011-01-01

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has become a powerful technique in biological molecular imaging and clinical diagnosis. With the rapid progress in nanoscale science and technology, nanostructure-based MR contrast agents are undergoing rapid development. This is in part due to the tuneable magnetic and cellular uptake properties, large surface area for conjugation and favourable biodistribution. In this review, we describe our recent progress in the development of high-performance nanostructured MR contrast agents. Specifically, we report on Gd-enriched nanostructured probes that exhibit T1 MR contrast and superparamagnetic Fe3O4 and CoFe2O4 nanostructures that display T2 MR contrast enhancement. The effects of nanostructure size, shape, assembly and surface modification on relaxivity are described. The potential of these contrast agents for in vitro and in vivo MR imaging with respect to colloidal stability under physiological conditions, biocompatibility, and surface functionality are also evaluated. PMID:20694208

  19. Feasibility of 3D harmonic contrast imaging.

    PubMed

    Voormolen, M M; Bouakaz, A; Krenning, B J; Lancée, C T; ten Cate, F J; de Jong, N

    2004-04-01

    Improved endocardial border delineation with the application of contrast agents should allow for less complex and faster tracing algorithms for left ventricular volume analysis. We developed a fast rotating phased array transducer for 3D imaging of the heart with harmonic capabilities making it suitable for contrast imaging. In this study the feasibility of 3D harmonic contrast imaging is evaluated in vitro. A commercially available tissue mimicking flow phantom was used in combination with Sonovue. Backscatter power spectra from a tissue and contrast region of interest were calculated from recorded radio frequency data. The spectra and the extracted contrast to tissue ratio from these spectra were used to optimize the excitation frequency, the pulse length and the receive filter settings of the transducer. Frequencies ranging from 1.66 to 2.35 MHz and pulse lengths of 1.5, 2 and 2.5 cycles were explored. An increase of more than 15 dB in the contrast to tissue ratio was found around the second harmonic compared with the fundamental level at an optimal excitation frequency of 1.74 MHz and a pulse length of 2.5 cycles. Using the optimal settings for 3D harmonic contrast recordings volume measurements of a left ventricular shaped agar phantom were performed. Without contrast the extracted volume data resulted in a volume error of 1.5%, with contrast an accuracy of 3.8% was achieved. The results show the feasibility of accurate volume measurements from 3D harmonic contrast images. Further investigations will include the clinical evaluation of the presented technique for improved assessment of the heart.

  20. Electrophoretic and antigenic characterisation of Dermatophilus congolensis extracellular products.

    PubMed

    Ambrose, N C; el Jack, M A; McOrist, S; Boid, R

    1997-12-01

    Dermatophilus congolensis is the causative agent of bovine dermatophilosis and lumpy wool in sheep. Two field isolates of D. congolensis, one each from a cow in Ghana and a sheep in Scotland, were cultured for 24-72 h in a synthetic medium based on RPMI-1640. Culture filtrates were examined by SDS-PAGE and considered to contain extracellular products released by growing hyphae and filaments. Electrophoretic profiles of culture filtrates of the two isolates contained common bands and bands that were unique to each isolate. The composition of extracellular products altered with increasing culture periods indicating that specific products were released at different stages of growth. Culture filtrate prepared in the presence of serine protease and metalloprotease inhibitors contained more and better defined bands than that prepared without protease inhibitors indicating the presence of proteases in culture filtrates. Western blot analysis of extracellular products using a panel of sera showed that the two isolates from different host species and distant geographical locations contained cross-reactive antigens. Natural and experimental infections stimulated antibody responses to antigens in culture filtrates, sera from animals that were disease free but in-contact with dermatophilosis-infected animals also contained antibodies to extracellular antigens. The antigens recognised by most sera had molecular weights of 200 kDa in the bovine isolate, 170 kDa in the ovine isolate and 67, 27 and 52-55 kDa in both isolates. The number of antigenic bands of both isolates was positively correlated with the intensity of challenge and the severity of infection: antibodies in sera from disease-free cattle in Ghana recognised more antigens than sera from disease-free sheep in Scotland and more antigens were recognised by sera from chronically-infected Ghanaian cattle than by sera from experimentally-infected calves and sheep. The latter developed antibodies to antigens of 27 and 24 k

  1. Optical Molecular Imaging Detects Changes in Extracellular pH with the Development of Head and Neck Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Loja, Melissa N; Luo, Zhen; Farwell, D. Greg; Luu, Quang C.; Donald, Paul J.; Amott, Deborah; Truong, Anh Q.; Gandour-Edwards, Regina F.; Nitin, N.

    2014-01-01

    Non-invasive localized measurement of extracellular pH in cancer tissues can have a significant impact on the management of cancer. Despite its significance, there are limited approaches for rapid and non-invasive measurement of local pH in a clinical environment. In this study, we demonstrate the potential of noninvasive topical delivery of Alexa-647 labeled pHLIP (pH responsive peptide conjugated with Alexa Fluor® 647) to image changes in extracellular pH associated with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma using widefield and high resolution imaging. We report a series of preclinical analyses to evaluate the optical contrast achieved after topical delivery of Alexa-647 labeled pHLIP in intact fresh human tissue specimens using widefield and high-resolution fluorescence imaging. Using topical delivery, Alexa-647 labeled pHLIP can be rapidly delivered throughout the epithelium of intact tissues with a depth exceeding 700 microns. Following labeling with Alexa-647 labeled pHLIP, the mean fluorescent contrast of increased 4 to 8 fold higher in clinically abnormal tissues as compared to paired clinically normal biopsies. Furthermore, the imaging approach showed significant differences in fluorescence contrast between the cancer and the normal biopsies across diverse patients and different anatomical sites (unpaired comparison). The fluorescence contrast differences between clinically abnormal and normal tissues were in agreement with the pathologic evaluation. Topical application of fluorescently labeled pHLIP can detect and differentiate normal from cancerous tissues using both widefield and high resolution imaging. This technology will provide an effective tool to assess tumor margins during surgery and improve detection and prognosis of head and neck cancer. PMID:22965462

  2. EXTRACELLULAR POLYANIONS IN DIGESTED SLUDGE: MEASUREMENT AND RELATIONSHIP TO SLUDGE DEWATERABILITY. (R823486)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The polyanionic fraction of digested sludge extracellular material was quantified using an in situ dye adsorption method, and the relationships between measured extracellular polyanion (ECPA)
    concentrations and sludge dewaterability were investigated. Measured ECPA concentrat...

  3. Properties of extracellular DNA from the cerebrospinal fluid and blood plasma during Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Glebova, K V; Konorova, I L; Poleshchuk, V V; Baidakova, G V; Veiko, N N

    2014-04-01

    The cerebrospinal fluid of patients with Parkinson's disease was shown to contain extracellular DNA. Extracellular DNA concentration in the cerebrospinal fluid was 3.3-fold lower than in blood plasma from these patients. HPLC-mass spectrometry analysis showed that the pool of extracellular DNA from the liquor is characterized by a lower content of deoxythymidine, but greater amounts of deoxycytidine and deoxyguanosine than the pool of extracellular DNA from the plasma. The level of deoxyguanosine was 2 times lower than that of deoxycytidine (as differentiated from plasma extracellular DNA with similar content of these substances). Our findings indicate that extracellular DNA from the cerebrospinal fluid contains considerable amounts of modified deoxyguanosine. These data attest to significant differences in the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of extracellular DNA from the blood and cerebrospinal fluid of patients. Specific features of extracellular DNA from the cerebrospinal fluid of patients suggest its involvement in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease.

  4. Charged extracellular residues, conserved throughout a G-protein-coupled receptor family, are required for ligand binding, receptor activation, and cell-surface expression.

    PubMed

    Hawtin, Stuart R; Simms, John; Conner, Matthew; Lawson, Zoe; Parslow, Rosemary A; Trim, Julie; Sheppard, Andrew; Wheatley, Mark

    2006-12-15

    For G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) in general, the roles of extracellular residues are not well defined compared with residues in transmembrane helices (TMs). Nevertheless, extracellular residues are important for various functions in both peptide-GPCRs and amine-GPCRs. In this study, the V(1a) vasopressin receptor was used to systematically investigate the role of extracellular charged residues that are highly conserved throughout a subfamily of peptide-GPCRs, using a combination of mutagenesis and molecular modeling. Of the 13 conserved charged residues identified in the extracellular loops (ECLs), Arg(116) (ECL1), Arg(125) (top of TMIII), and Asp(204) (ECL2) are important for agonist binding and/or receptor activation. Molecular modeling revealed that Arg(125) (and Lys(125)) stabilizes TMIII by interacting with lipid head groups. Charge reversal (Asp(125)) caused re-ordering of the lipids, altered helical packing, and increased solvent penetration of the TM bundle. Interestingly, a negative charge is excluded at this locus in peptide-GPCRs, whereas a positive charge is excluded in amine-GPCRs. This contrasting conserved charge may reflect differences in GPCR binding modes between peptides and amines, with amines needing to access a binding site crevice within the receptor TM bundle, whereas the binding site of peptide-GPCRs includes more extracellular domains. A conserved negative charge at residue 204 (ECL2), juxtaposed to the highly conserved disulfide bond, was essential for agonist binding and signaling. Asp(204) (and Glu(204)) establishes TMIII contacts required for maintaining the beta-hairpin fold of ECL2, which if broken (Ala(204) or Arg(204)) resulted in ECL2 unfolding and receptor dysfunction. This study provides mechanistic insight into the roles of conserved extracellular residues.

  5. Contrast adaptation in the Limulus lateral eye

    PubMed Central

    Valtcheva, Tchoudomira M.

    2015-01-01

    Luminance and contrast adaptation are neuronal mechanisms employed by the visual system to adjust our sensitivity to light. They are mediated by an assortment of cellular and network processes distributed across the retina and visual cortex. Both have been demonstrated in the eyes of many vertebrates, but only luminance adaptation has been shown in invertebrate eyes to date. Since the computational benefits of contrast adaptation should apply to all visual systems, we investigated whether this mechanism operates in horseshoe crab eyes, one of the best-understood neural networks in the animal kingdom. The spike trains of optic nerve fibers were recorded in response to light stimuli modulated randomly in time and delivered to single ommatidia or the whole eye. We found that the retina adapts to both the mean luminance and contrast of a white-noise stimulus, that luminance- and contrast-adaptive processes are largely independent, and that they originate within an ommatidium. Network interactions are not involved. A published computer model that simulates existing knowledge of the horseshoe crab eye did not show contrast adaptation, suggesting that a heretofore unknown mechanism may underlie the phenomenon. This mechanism does not appear to reside in photoreceptors because white-noise analysis of electroretinogram recordings did not show contrast adaptation. The likely site of origin is therefore the spike discharge mechanism of optic nerve fibers. The finding of contrast adaption in a retinal network as simple as the horseshoe crab eye underscores the broader importance of this image processing strategy to vision. PMID:26445869

  6. Contrast affects flicker and speed perception differently

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thompson, P.; Stone, L. S.

    1997-01-01

    We have previously shown that contrast affects speed perception, with lower-contrast, drifting gratings perceived as moving slower. In a recent study, we examined the implications of this result on models of speed perception that use the amplitude of the response of linear spatio-temporal filters to determine speed. In this study, we investigate whether the contrast dependence of speed can be understood within the context of models in which speed estimation is made using the temporal frequency of the response of linear spatio-temporal filters. We measured the effect of contrast on flicker perception and found that contrast manipulations produce opposite effects on perceived drift rate and perceived flicker rate, i.e., reducing contrast increases the apparent temporal frequency of counterphase modulated gratings. This finding argues that, if a temporal frequency-based algorithm underlies speed perception, either flicker and speed perception must not be based on the output of the same mechanism or contrast effects on perceived spatial frequency reconcile the disparate effects observed for perceived temporal frequency and speed.

  7. Positioning long lines: contrast versus plain radiography

    PubMed Central

    Reece, A; Ubhi, T; Craig, A; Newell, S

    2001-01-01

    AIM—To assess the value of contrast versus plain radiography in determining radio-opaque long line tip position in neonates.
METHODS—In a prospective study, plain radiography was performed after insertion of radio-opaque long lines. If the line tip was not visible on the plain film, a second film with contrast was obtained in an attempt to visualise the tip.
RESULTS—Sixty eight lines were inserted during the study period, 62 of which were included in the study. In 31, a second radiographic examination with contrast was necessary to determine position of the tip. In 29 of these, the line tip was clearly visualised with contrast. On two occasions, the line tip could not be seen because the contrast had filled the vein and obscured the tip from view. Eight of the lines that required a second radiograph with contrast were repositioned.
CONCLUSION—Intravenous contrast should be routinely used in the assessment of long line position in the neonate.

 PMID:11207231

  8. Factors Affecting Crowded Acuity: Eccentricity and Contrast

    PubMed Central

    Coates, Daniel R.; Chin, Jeremy M.; Chung, Susana T. L.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose Acuity measurement is a fundamental method to assess visual performance in the clinic. Little is known about how acuity measured in the presence of neighboring letters, as in the case of letter charts, changes with contrast and with non-foveal viewing. This information is crucial for acuity measurement using low-contrast charts and when patients cannot use their fovea. In this study, we evaluated how optotype acuity, with and without flankers, is affected by contrast and eccentricity. Methods Five young adults with normal vision identified the orientation of a Tumbling-E alone or in the presence of four flanking Tumbling-Es. Edge-to-edge letter spacing ranged from 1 to 20 bar widths. Stimuli were presented on a white background for 150 ms with Weber contrast ranging from −2.5% to −99%. Flankers had the same size and contrast as the target. Testings were performed at the fovea, 3, 5 and 10 degrees in the inferior visual field. Results When plotted as a function of letter spacing, acuity remains unaffected by the presence of flankers until the flankers are within the critical spacing, which averages an edge-to-edge spacing of 4.4 bar widths at the fovea, and approximately 16 bar widths at all three eccentricities. Critical spacing decreases with a reduction in contrast. When plotted as a function of contrast, acuity only worsens when the contrast falls below approximately 24% at the fovea and 17% in the periphery, for flanked and unflanked conditions alike. Conclusions The letter spacing on conventional letter charts exceeds the critical spacing for acuity measurement at the fovea, at all contrast levels. Thus these charts are appropriate for assessing foveal acuity. In the periphery, the critical spacing is larger than the letter spacing on conventional charts. Consequently, these charts may underestimate the acuity measured in the periphery due to the effects of crowding. PMID:23770657

  9. Challenges posed by extracellular vesicles from eukaryotic microbes

    PubMed Central

    Wolf, Julie M.; Casadevall, Arturo

    2014-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles (EV) produced by eukaryotic microbes play an important role during infection. EV release is thought to benefit microbial invasion by delivering a high concentration of virulence factors to distal host cells or to the cytoplasm of a host cell. EV can significantly impact the outcome of host-pathogen interaction in a cargo-dependent manner. Release of EV from eukaryotic microbes poses unique challenges when compared to their bacterial or archaeal counterparts. Firstly, the membrane-bound organelles within eukaryotes facilitate multiple mechanisms of vesicle generation. Secondly, the fungal cell wall poses a unique barrier between the vesicle release site at the plasma membrane and its destined extracellular environment. This review focuses on these eukaryotic-specific aspects of vesicle synthesis and release. PMID:25460799

  10. Graphene Multielectrode Arrays as a Versatile Tool for Extracellular Measurements.

    PubMed

    Kireev, Dmitry; Seyock, Silke; Lewen, Johannes; Maybeck, Vanessa; Wolfrum, Bernhard; Offenhäusser, Andreas

    2017-04-03

    Graphene multielectrode arrays (GMEAs) presented in this work are used for cardio and neuronal extracellular recordings. The advantages of the graphene as a part of the multielectrode arrays are numerous: from a general flexibility and biocompatibility to the unique electronic properties of graphene. The devices used for extensive in vitro studies of a cardiac-like cell line and cortical neuronal networks show excellent ability to extracellularly detect action potentials with signal to noise ratios in the range of 45 ± 22 for HL-1 cells and 48 ± 26 for spontaneous bursting/spiking neuronal activity. Complex neuronal bursting activity patterns as well as a variety of characteristic shapes of HL-1 action potentials are recorded with the GMEAs. This paper illustrates that the potential applications of the GMEAs in biological and medical research are still numerous and diverse.

  11. Extracellular potassium accumulation in voltage-clamped frog ventricular muscle.

    PubMed Central

    Cleemann, L; Morad, M

    1979-01-01

    1. Application of voltage clamp pulses (1--10 sec) to frog ventricular strips causes temporary changes in the extracellular K concentration. 2. The changes in the extracellular K concentration can be estimated from (a) slowly decaying post-clamp after-potentials, (b) changes in the action potential duration, and (c) measurements with a K-selective micro-electrode. 3. The depolarization of the resting potential and the shortening of the action potential are present in approximately the same proportions during voltage-clamp induced extracellular K accumulation and during perfusion with a K-ricn Ringer solution but small consistent differences are noticed. 4. The measurements of the after-potential, the action potential shortening, and the K-electrode response were analysed as indicators of extracellular K+ activity and it was concluded that the after-potential provides the most convenient and reliable estimate of the absolute magnitude of the voltage-clamp induced extracellular K accumulation. 5. The depolarizing after-potentials decay more slowly than the hyperpolarizing after-potentials but it is found that this reflects the selectivity of the membrane to K+ concentrations as predicted by the Nernst or the Goldman equations. 6. Analysis of the redistribution of accumulated K+ from the decay of the after-potential suggests that the major part of the redistribution process can be described by a single time constant (2--4 sec). A much longer time constant is required for a smaller component of the 'tail' in order to bring [K]o to the normal resting state. 7. N-shaped relations similar to the 'steady state' current-voltage relation are obtained when the post-clamp after-potential, the action potential shortening, and the K-electrode response are plotted versus the clamped membrane potential. The maxima of these curves are located around -40 mV and the minima around -20 mV. 8. In spite of a significant outward membrane current (1--1.5 microamperemeter) in the minimum

  12. Telocytes and Their Extracellular Vesicles—Evidence and Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Cretoiu, Dragos; Xu, Jiahong; Xiao, Junjie; Cretoiu, Sanda M.

    2016-01-01

    Entering the new millennium, nobody believed that there was the possibility of discovering a new cellular type. Nevertheless, telocytes (TCs) were described as a novel kind of interstitial cell. Ubiquitously distributed in the extracellular matrix of any tissue, TCs are regarded as cells with telopodes involved in intercellular communication by direct homo- and heterocellular junctions or by extracellular vesicle (EVs) release. Their discovery has aroused the interest of many research groups worldwide, and many researchers regard them as potentially regenerative cells. Given the experience of our laboratory, where these cells were first described, we review the evidence supporting the fact that TCs release EVs, and discuss alternative hypotheses about their future implications. PMID:27529228

  13. Neutrophil extracellular traps - the dark side of neutrophils.

    PubMed

    Sørensen, Ole E; Borregaard, Niels

    2016-05-02

    Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) were discovered as extracellular strands of decondensed DNA in complex with histones and granule proteins, which were expelled from dying neutrophils to ensnare and kill microbes. NETs are formed during infection in vivo by mechanisms different from those originally described in vitro. Citrullination of histones by peptidyl arginine deiminase 4 (PAD4) is central for NET formation in vivo. NETs may spur formation of autoantibodies and may also serve as scaffolds for thrombosis, thereby providing a link among infection, autoimmunity, and thrombosis. In this review, we present the mechanisms by which NETs are formed and discuss the physiological and pathophysiological consequences of NET formation. We conclude that NETs may be of more importance in autoimmunity and thrombosis than in innate immune defense.

  14. Functional properties of extracellular domains of transducer receptor gp130.

    PubMed

    Kostjukova, M N; Tupitsyn, N N

    2011-04-01

    Cytokine receptor molecules have been shown to have extracellular domains of complex structure and a multi-step activation system. Glycoprotein gp130 is a typical transducer of cytokine signal; it functions by forming multicomponent receptor complexes and transferring signals of tens of cytokines from the IL-6 family. Structural organization and basic functioning principles of gp130 are well known, as well as related signal pathways, which function during normal differentiation and are involved in pathogenesis of many tumors. The role of gp130 in IL-6-dependent tumors is best studied. In this review, based on extensive accumulated data, we examine the functional significance of certain parts of gp130 extracellular domains. Potentials of a recently developed method for estimation of receptor activation at the level of epitope structure are discussed.

  15. Extracellular Polysaccharides Produced by Yeasts and Yeast-Like Fungi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Bogaert, Inge N. A.; de Maeseneire, Sofie L.; Vandamme, Erick J.

    Several yeasts and yeast-like fungi are known to produce extracellular polysaccharides. Most of these contain D-mannose, either alone or in combination with other sugars or phosphate. A large chemical and structural variability is found between yeast species and even among different strains. The types of polymers that are synthesized can be chemically characterized as mannans, glucans, phosphoman-nans, galactomannans, glucomannans and glucuronoxylomannans. Despite these differences, almost all of the yeast exopolysaccharides display some sort of biological activity. Some of them have already applications in chemistry, pharmacy, cosmetics or as probiotic. Furthermore, some yeast exopolysaccharides, such as pullulan, exhibit specific physico-chemical and rheological properties, making them useful in a wide range of technical applications. A survey is given here of the production, the characteristics and the application potential of currently well studied yeast extracellular polysaccharides.

  16. Microbial extracellular enzymes and the marine carbon cycle.

    PubMed

    Arnosti, Carol

    2011-01-01

    Extracellular enzymes initiate microbial remineralization of organic matter by hydrolyzing substrates to sizes sufficiently small to be transported across cell membranes. As much of marine primary productivity is processed by heterotrophic microbes, the substrate specificities of extracellular enzymes, the rates at which they function in seawater and sediments, and factors controlling their production, distribution, and active lifetimes, are central to carbon cycling in marine systems. In this review, these topics are considered from biochemical, microbial/molecular biological, and geochemical perspectives. Our understanding of the capabilities and limitations of heterotrophic microbial communities has been greatly advanced in recent years, in part through genetic and genomic approaches. New methods to measure enzyme activities in the field are needed to keep pace with these advances and to pursue intriguing evidence that patterns of enzyme activities in different environments are linked to differences in microbial community composition that may profoundly affect the marine carbon cycle.

  17. Neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) impact on deep vein thrombosis.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, Tobias A; Brill, Alexander; Wagner, Denisa D

    2012-08-01

    Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a major health problem that requires improved prophylaxis and treatment. Inflammatory conditions such as infection, cancer, and autoimmune diseases are risk factors for DVT. We and others have recently shown that extracellular DNA fibers produced in inflammation and known as neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) contribute to experimental DVT. NETs stimulate thrombus formation and coagulation and are abundant in thrombi in animal models of DVT. It appears that, in addition to fibrin and von Willebrand factor, NETs represent a third thrombus scaffold. Here, we review how NETs stimulate thrombosis and discuss known and potential interactions of NETs with endothelium, platelets, red blood cells, and coagulation factors and how NETs could influence thrombolysis. We propose that drugs that inhibit NET formation or facilitate NET degradation may prevent or treat DVT.

  18. Capturing relevant extracellular matrices for investigating cell migration

    PubMed Central

    Keely, Patricia; Nain, Amrinder

    2015-01-01

    Much progress in understanding cell migration has been determined by using classic two-dimensional (2D) tissue culture platforms. However, increasingly, it is appreciated that certain properties of cell migration in vivo are not represented by strictly 2D assays. There is much interest in creating relevant three-dimensional (3D) culture environments and engineered platforms to better represent features of the extracellular matrix and stromal microenvironment that are not captured in 2D platforms. Important to this goal is a solid understanding of the features of the extracellular matrix—composition, stiffness, topography, and alignment—in different tissues and disease states and the development of means to capture these features PMID:26918156

  19. Extracellular hyperosmolality and body temperature during physical exercise in dogs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kozlowski, S.; Greenleaf, J. E.; Turlejska, E.; Nazar, K.

    1980-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that thermoregulation during exercise can be affected by extracellular fluid hyperosmolality without changing the plasma Na(+) concentration. The effects of preexercise venous infusions of hypertonic mannitol and NaCl solutions on rectal temperature responses were compared in dogs running at moderate intensity for 60 min on a treadmill. Plasma Na(+) concentration was increased by 12 meq after NaCl infusion, and decreased by 9 meq after mannitol infusion. Both infusions increased plasma by 15 mosmol/kg. After both infusions, rectal temperature was essentially constant during 60 min rest. However, compared with the noninfusion exercise increase in osmolality of 1.3 C, rectal temperature increased by 1.9 C after both postinfusion exercise experiments. It was concluded that inducing extracellular hyperosmolality, without elevating plasma, can induce excessive increases in rectal temperature during exericse but not at rest.

  20. Extracellular Vesicles: Composition, Biological Relevance, and Methods of Study

    PubMed Central

    Zaborowski, MikoŁaj P.; Balaj, Leonora; Breakefield, Xandra O.; Lai, Charles P.

    2015-01-01

    The release of extracellular vesicles (EVs), including exosomes and microvesicles, is a phenomenon shared by many cell types as a means of communicating with other cells and also potentially removing cell contents. The cargo of EVs includes the proteins, lipids, nucleic acids, and membrane receptors of the cells from which they originate. EVs released into the extracellular space can enter body fluids and potentially reach distant tissues. Once taken up by neighboring and/or distal cells, EVs can transfer functional cargo that may alter the status of recipient cells, thereby contributing to both physiological and pathological processes. In this article, we will focus on EV composition, mechanisms of uptake, and their biological effects on recipient cells. We will also discuss established and recently developed methods used to study EVs, including isolation, quantification, labeling and imaging protocols, as well as RNA analysis. PMID:26955082

  1. Neuroprotective Effects of Glutamate Antagonists and Extracellular Acidity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaku, David A.; Giffard, Rona G.; Choi, Dennis W.

    1993-06-01

    Glutamate antagonists protect neurons from hypoxic injury both in vivo and in vitro, but in vitro studies have not been done under the acidic conditions typical of hypoxia-ischemia in vivo. Consistent with glutamate receptor antagonism, extracellular acidity reduced neuronal death in murine cortical cultures that were deprived of oxygen and glucose. Under these acid conditions, N-methyl-D-aspartate and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isox-azolepropionate-kainate antagonists further reduced neuronal death, such that some neurons tolerated prolonged oxygen and glucose deprivation almost as well as did astrocytes. Neuroprotection induced by this combination exceeded that induced by glutamate antagonists alone, suggesting that extracellular acidity has beneficial effects beyond the attenuation of ionotropic glutamate receptor activation.

  2. Specialisation of extracellular matrix for function in tendons and ligaments.

    PubMed

    Birch, Helen L; Thorpe, Chavaunne T; Rumian, Adam P

    2013-01-01

    Tendons and ligaments are similar structures in terms of their composition, organisation and mechanical properties. The distinction between them stems from their anatomical location; tendons form a link between muscle and bone while ligaments link bones to bones. A range of overlapping functions can be assigned to tendon and ligaments and each structure has specific mechanical properties which appear to be suited for particular in vivo function. The extracellular matrix in tendon and ligament varies in accordance with function, providing appropriate mechanical properties. The most useful framework in which to consider extracellular matrix differences therefore is that of function rather than anatomical location. In this review we discuss what is known about the relationship between functional requirements, structural properties from molecular to gross level, cellular gene expression and matrix turnover. The relevance of this information is considered by reviewing clinical aspects of tendon and ligament repair and reconstructive procedures.

  3. Lipid-targeting peptide probes for extracellular vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Flynn, Aaron D.; Yin, Hang

    2017-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles released from cells are under intense investigation for their roles in cell-cell communication and cancer progression. However, individual vesicles have been difficult to probe as their small size renders them invisible by conventional light microscopy. However, as a consequence of their small size these vesicles possess highly curved lipid membranes that offer an unconventional target for curvature-sensing probes. In this article, we present a strategy for using peptide-based biosensors to detect highly curved membranes and the negatively charged membrane lipid phosphatidylserine, we delineate several assays used to validate curvature- and lipid-targeting mechanisms, and we explore potential applications in probing extracellular vesicles released from sources such as apoptotic cells, cancer cells, or activated platelets. PMID:26909741

  4. Extracellular DNA and histones: double-edged swords in immunothrombosis.

    PubMed

    Gould, T J; Lysov, Z; Liaw, P C

    2015-06-01

    The existence of extracellular DNA in human plasma, also known as cell-free DNA (cfDNA), was first described in the 1940s. In recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in the functional significance of cfDNA, particularly in the context of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs). cfDNA and histones are key components of NETs that aid in the host response to infection and inflammation. However, cfDNA and histones may also exert harmful effects by triggering coagulation, inflammation, and cell death and by impairing fibrinolysis. In this article, we will review the pathologic nature of cfDNA and histones in macrovascular and microvascular thrombosis, including venous thromboembolism, cancer, sepsis, and trauma. We will also discuss the prognostic value of cfDNA and histones in these disease states. Understanding the molecular and cellular pathways regulated by cfDNA and histones may provide novel insights to prevent pathological thrombus formation and vascular occlusion.

  5. Extracellular matrix mediates epithelial effects on chondrogenesis in vitro.

    PubMed

    Solursh, M; Jensen, K L; Zanetti, N C; Linsenmayer, T F; Reiter, R S

    1984-10-01

    It has been previously observed that single chick embryonic limb mesenchymal cells can differentiate into chondrocytes without cell-cell interactions when cultured in collagen or agarose gels. In the present study, limb ectoderm, but not dermis, inhibits chondrogenesis when placed on such collagen gel cultures. The inhibitory influence can be transmitted extensive distances in the gel, even when the ectoderm is placed on a porous filter. Collagen gels, preconditioned with limb ectoderms, are also inhibitory to chondrogenesis. On the other hand, chondrogenesis is less inhibited by ectoderm when the mesenchymal cells are placed in agarose. These results suggest that the antichondrogenic effect of limb ectoderm is mediated through alterations of the collagenous extracellular matrix and support the idea that the extracellular matrix must be considered as an organized, functional unit capable of regulating cell differentiation.

  6. Sea Ice Microorganisms: Environmental Constraints and Extracellular Responses

    PubMed Central

    Ewert, Marcela; Deming, Jody W.

    2013-01-01

    Inherent to sea ice, like other high latitude environments, is the strong seasonality driven by changes in insolation throughout the year. Sea-ice organisms are exposed to shifting, sometimes limiting, conditions of temperature and salinity. An array of adaptations to survive these and other challenges has been acquired by those organisms that inhabit the ice. One key adaptive response is the production of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS), which play multiple roles in the entrapment, retention and survival of microorganisms in sea ice. In this concept paper we consider two main areas of sea-ice microbiology: the physico-chemical properties that define sea ice as a microbial habitat, imparting particular advantages and limits; and extracellular responses elicited in microbial inhabitants as they exploit or survive these conditions. Emphasis is placed on protective strategies used in the face of fluctuating and extreme environmental conditions in sea ice. Gaps in knowledge and testable hypotheses are identified for future research. PMID:24832800

  7. Optimizing analog-to-digital converters for sampling extracellular potentials.

    PubMed

    Artan, N Sertac; Xu, Xiaoxiang; Shi, Wei; Chao, H Jonathan

    2012-01-01

    In neural implants, an analog-to-digital converter (ADC) provides the delicate interface between the analog signals generated by neurological processes and the digital signal processor that is tasked to interpret these signals for instance for epileptic seizure detection or limb control. In this paper, we propose a low-power ADC architecture for neural implants that process extracellular potentials. The proposed architecture uses the spike detector that is readily available on most of these implants in a closed-loop with an ADC. The spike detector determines whether the current input signal is part of a spike or it is part of noise to adaptively determine the instantaneous sampling rate of the ADC. The proposed architecture can reduce the power consumption of a traditional ADC by 62% when sampling extracellular potentials without any significant impact on spike detection accuracy.

  8. Contrast-induced transient cortical blindness.

    PubMed

    Shah, Parth R; Yohendran, Jayshan; Parker, Geoffrey D; McCluskey, Peter J

    2013-05-01

    We present a case of transient cortical blindness secondary to contrast medium toxicity. A 58-year-old man had successful endovascular coiling of a right posterior inferior cerebellar artery aneurysm but became confused and unable to see after the procedure. His visual acuity was no light perception bilaterally. Clinically, there was no new intra-ocular pathology. An urgent non-contrast computed tomography scan of the brain showed cortical hyperdensity in both parieto-occipital cortices, consistent with contrast medium leakage through the blood-brain barrier from the coiling procedure. The man remained completely blind for 72 hours, after which his visual acuity improved gradually back to his baseline level.

  9. Contrast enhanced ultrasound of breast cancer

    PubMed Central

    Cassano, E; Rizzo, S; Bozzini, A; Menna, S; Bellomi, M

    2006-01-01

    The importance of ultrasound examination in the diagnosis of breast cancer has been widely demonstrated. During the last few years, the introduction of ultrasound contrast media has been considered a promising tool for studying the vascular pattern of focal lesions within the breast. Our purpose was to assess whether contrast-enhanced (CE) ultrasound examination, performed using specific contrast imaging modes, can be helpful for detection and characterization of breast lesions, and for prediction of the response of breast cancer to therapy. PMID:16478698

  10. Contrast enhanced spectroscopic optical coherence tomography

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boppart, Stephen A. (Inventor); Xu, Chenyang (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    A method of forming an image of a sample includes performing SOCT on a sample. The sample may include a contrast agent, which may include an absorbing agent and/or a scattering agent. A method of forming an image of tissue may include selecting a contrast agent, delivering the contrast agent to the tissue, acquiring SOCT data from the tissue, and converting the SOCT data into an image. The contributions to the SOCT data of an absorbing agent and a scattering agent in a sample may be quantified separately.

  11. Analysis of cellular and extracellular DNA in fingerprints

    SciTech Connect

    Button, Julie M.

    2014-09-09

    It has been previously shown that DNA can be recovered from latent fingerprints left on various surfaces [R. A. H. van Oorschot and M. K. Jones, Nature 387, 767 (1997)]. However, the source of the DNA, extracellular versus cellular origin, is difficult to determine. If the DNA is cellular, it is believed to belong to skin cells while extracellular DNA is believed to originate from body fluids such as sweat [D. J. Daly et. al, Forensic Sci. Int. Genet. 6, 41-46 (2012); V. V. Vlassov et. al, BioEssays 29, 654-667 (2007)]. The origin of the DNA in fingerprints has implications for processing and interpretation of forensic evidence. The determination of the origin of DNA in fingerprints is further complicated by the fact that the DNA in fingerprints tends to be at a very low quantity [R. A. H. van Oorschot and M. K. Jones, Nature 387, 767 (1997)]. This study examined fingerprints from five volunteers left on sterilized glass slides and plastic pens. Three fingerprints were left on each glass slide (thumb, index, and middle fingers) while the pens were held as if one was writing with them. The DNA was collected from the objects using the wet swabbing technique (TE buffer). Following collection, the cellular and extracellular components of each sample were separated using centrifugation and an acoustofluidics system. Centrifugation is still the primary separation technique utilized in forensics laboratories, while acoustic focusing uses sound waves to focus large particles (cells) into low pressure nodes, separating them from the rest of the sample matrix. After separation, all samples were quantified using real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR). The overall trend is that there is more DNA in the extracellular fractions than cellular fractions for both centrifugation and acoustofluidic processing. Additionally, more DNA was generally collected from the pen samples than the samples left on glass slides.

  12. Ratiometric Imaging of Extracellular pH in Dental Biofilms.

    PubMed

    Schlafer, Sebastian; Dige, Irene

    2016-03-09

    The pH in bacterial biofilms on teeth is of central importance for dental caries, a disease with a high worldwide prevalence. Nutrients and metabolites are not distributed evenly in dental biofilms. A complex interplay of sorption to and reaction with organic matter in the biofilm reduces the diffusion paths of solutes and creates steep gradients of reactive molecules, including organic acids, across the biofilm. Quantitative fluorescent microscopic methods, such as fluorescence life time imaging or pH ratiometry, can be employed to visualize pH in different microenvironments of dental biofilms. pH ratiometry exploits a pH-dependent shift in the fluorescent emission of pH-sensitive dyes. Calculation of the emission ratio at two different wavelengths allows determining local pH in microscopic images, irrespective of the concentration of the dye. Contrary to microelectrodes the technique allows monitoring both vertical and horizontal pH gradients in real-time without mechanically disturbing the biofilm. However, care must be taken to differentiate accurately between extra- and intracellular compartments of the biofilm. Here, the ratiometric dye, seminaphthorhodafluor-4F 5-(and-6) carboxylic acid (C-SNARF-4) is employed to monitor extracellular pH in in vivo grown dental biofilms of unknown species composition. Upon exposure to glucose the dye is up-concentrated inside all bacterial cells in the biofilms; it is thus used both as a universal bacterial stain and as a marker of extracellular pH. After confocal microscopic image acquisition, the bacterial biomass is removed from all pictures using digital image analysis software, which permits to exclusively calculate extracellular pH. pH ratiometry with the ratiometric dye is well-suited to study extracellular pH in thin biofilms of up to 75 µm thickness, but is limited to the pH range between 4.5 and 7.0.

  13. Extracellular Proteinases of Yeasts and Yeastlike Fungi1

    PubMed Central

    Ahearn, D. G.; Meyers, S. P.; Nichols, R. A.

    1968-01-01

    Approximately 800 yeasts and other fungi, representing over 70 species, were tested for extracellular caseinolysis. Isolates of a variety of genera, including Aureobasidium, Cephalosporium, Endomycopsis, Kluyveromyces, and numerous sporobolomycetes, demonstrated significant proteolytic activity. Caseinolysis was not necessarily correlated with gelatin liquefaction or with albuminolysis. Numerous fungi showed significant proteolysis at 5 C. The most active organisms were isolates of Candida lipolytica, Aureobasidium pullulans, Candida punicea, and species of Cephalosporium. Taxonomic and ecological implications of proteolytic activity are discussed. Images Fig. 1 PMID:5692110

  14. Microfluidic filtration system to isolate extracellular vesicles from blood.

    PubMed

    Davies, Ryan T; Kim, Junho; Jang, Su Chul; Choi, Eun-Jeong; Gho, Yong Song; Park, Jaesung

    2012-12-21

    Extracellular vesicles are released by various cell types, particularly tumor cells, and may be potential targets for blood-based cancer diagnosis. However, studies performed on blood-borne vesicles to date have been limited by lack of effective, standardized purification strategies. Using in situ prepared nanoporous membranes, we present a simple strategy employing a microfluidic filtration system to isolate vesicles from whole blood samples. This method can be applied to purify nano-sized particles from blood allowing isolation of intact extracellular vesicles, avoiding the need for laborious and potentially damaging centrifugation steps or overly specific antibody-based affinity purification. Porous polymer monoliths were integrated as membranes into poly(methyl methacrylate) microfluidic chips by benchtop UV photopolymerization through a mask, allowing precise positioning of membrane elements while preserving simplicity of device preparation. Pore size could be manipulated by changing the ratio of porogenic solvent to prepolymer solution, and was tuned to a size proper for extraction of vesicles. Using the membrane as a size exclusion filter, we separated vesicles from cells and large debris by injecting whole blood under pressure through the microfluidic device. To enhance isolation purity, DC electrophoresis was employed as an alternative driving force to propel particles across the filter and increase the separation efficiency of vesicles from proteins. From the whole blood of melanoma-grown mice, we isolated extracellular vesicles and performed RT-PCR to verify their contents of RNA. Melan A mRNA derived from melanoma tumor cells were found enriched in filtered samples, confirming the recovery of vesicles via their cargo. This filtration system can be incorporated into other on-chip processes enabling integrated sample preparation for the downstream analysis of blood-based extracellular vesicles.

  15. Recent advances in understanding the extracellular calcium-sensing receptor

    PubMed Central

    Colella, Matilde; Gerbino, Andrea; Hofer, Aldebaran M.; Curci, Silvana

    2016-01-01

    The extracellular calcium-sensing receptor (CaR), a ubiquitous class C G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR), is responsible for the control of calcium homeostasis in body fluids. It integrates information about external Ca 2+ and a surfeit of other endogenous ligands into multiple intracellular signals, but how is this achieved? This review will focus on some of the exciting concepts in CaR signaling and pharmacology that have emerged in the last few years. PMID:27803801

  16. Extracellular Alkalinization as a Defense Response in Potato Cells

    PubMed Central

    Moroz, Natalia; Fritch, Karen R.; Marcec, Matthew J.; Tripathi, Diwaker; Smertenko, Andrei; Tanaka, Kiwamu

    2017-01-01

    A quantitative and robust bioassay to assess plant defense response is important for studies of disease resistance and also for the early identification of disease during pre- or non-symptomatic phases. An increase in extracellular pH is known to be an early defense response in plants. In this study, we demonstrate extracellular alkalinization as a defense response in potatoes. Using potato suspension cell cultures, we observed an alkalinization response against various pathogen- and plant-derived elicitors in a dose- and time-dependent manner. We also assessed the defense response against a variety of potato pathogens, such as protists (Phytophthora infestans and Spongospora subterranea) and fungi (Verticillium dahliae and Colletotrichum coccodes). Our results show that extracellular pH increases within 30 min in proportion to the number of pathogen spores added. Consistently with the alkalinization effect, the higher transcription level of several defense-related genes and production of reactive oxygen species was observed. Our results demonstrate that the alkalinization response is an effective marker to study early stages of defense response in potatoes. PMID:28174578

  17. Extracellular Transglucosylase and α-Amylase of Streptococcus equinus1

    PubMed Central

    Boyer, Ernest W.; Hartman, Paul A.

    1971-01-01

    Culture filtrates of Streptococcus equinus 1091 contained α-amylase and transglucosylase. The effects of calcium carbonate, age of inoculum, concentration of maltose, and duration of the fermentation on α-amylase and transglucosylase production were determined. The extracellular α-amylase was purified 48-fold and was free of transglucosylase activity. The α-amylase (amylose substrate) required Cl− for maximum activity; ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) partially inhibited activity, but CaCl2 prevented EDTA inhibition. The temperature optimum was 38 C at pH 7.0, and the pH optimum was 7.0 at 37 C in the presence of CaCl2. Predominant final products of amylose hydrolysis, in order of decreasing prevalence, were maltose, maltotriose, maltotetraose, and glucose. The α-amylase showed no evidence of multiple attack. The extracellular transglucosylase was purified 27-fold, but a small amount of α-amylase remained. Transglucosylase activity (amylose substrate) was not increased in the presence of CaCl2. The temperature optimum was 37 C at pH 6.5, and the pH optimum was 6.0 at 37 C. Carbohydrates that served as acceptors for the transglucosylase to degrade amylose were, in order of decreasing acceptor efficiency: d-glucose, d-mannose, l-sorbose, maltose, sucrose, and trehalose. The extracellular transglucosylase of S. equinus 1091 synthesized higher maltodextrins in the medium when the cells were grown in the presence of maltose. Images PMID:4995651

  18. The Extracellular Matrix Regulates Granuloma Necrosis in Tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Al Shammari, Basim; Shiomi, Takayuki; Tezera, Liku; Bielecka, Magdalena K; Workman, Victoria; Sathyamoorthy, Tarangini; Mauri, Francesco; Jayasinghe, Suwan N; Robertson, Brian D; D'Armiento, Jeanine; Friedland, Jon S; Elkington, Paul T

    2015-08-01

    A central tenet of tuberculosis pathogenesis is that caseous necrosis leads to extracellular matrix destruction and bacterial transmission. We reconsider the underlying mechanism of tuberculosis pathology and demonstrate that collagen destruction may be a critical initial event, causing caseous necrosis as opposed to resulting from it. In human tuberculosis granulomas, regions of extracellular matrix destruction map to areas of caseous necrosis. In mice, transgenic expression of human matrix metalloproteinase 1 causes caseous necrosis, the pathological hallmark of human tuberculosis. Collagen destruction is the principal pathological difference between humanised mice and wild-type mice with tuberculosis, whereas the release of proinflammatory cytokines does not differ, demonstrating that collagen breakdown may lead to cell death and caseation. To investigate this hypothesis, we developed a 3-dimensional cell culture model of tuberculosis granuloma formation, using bioelectrospray technology. Collagen improved survival of Mycobacterium tuberculosis-infected cells analyzed on the basis of a lactate dehydrogenase release assay, propidium iodide staining, and measurement of the total number of viable cells. Taken together, these findings suggest that collagen destruction is an initial event in tuberculosis immunopathology, leading to caseous necrosis and compromising the immune response, revealing a previously unappreciated role for the extracellular matrix in regulating the host-pathogen interaction.

  19. Extracellular Antibody Drug Conjugates Exploiting the Proximity of Two Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, David J; Harried, Scott S; Murphy, John L; Hall, Chad A; Shekhani, Mohammed S; Pain, Christophe; Lyons, Conner A; Chillemi, Antonella; Malavasi, Fabio; Pearce, Homer L; Thorson, Jon S; Prudent, James R

    2016-01-01

    The human Na+/K+-ATPase (NKA) is a plasma membrane ion pump that uses ATP to help maintain the resting potential of all human cells. Inhibition of the NKA leads to cell swelling and death. The results of this investigation show that on cancer cells, the NKA either comes in close proximity to, associate with or complexes to important cancer-related proteins, and thus can be targeted with a new type of precision therapy called the extracellular drug conjugate or EDC. The EDCs reported here exhibit EC50 values in the low to mid-picomolar range, and signal to noise ratios > 1,000:1, both of which are dependent on the cell surface expression of the NKA and corresponding cancer-related target. We demonstrate that a potent small molecule inhibitor of the NKA can be covalently attached to antibodies targeting CD20, CD38, CD56, CD147, or dysadherin, to create a series of selective and powerful EDCs that kill cancer cells extracellularly by a mechanism resembling necrosis. This is therefore a framework for the development of a new type of precision therapy wherein exquisite selectivity is achieved for targeting extracellular disease-related proteins. PMID:27434591

  20. Mycobacterium massiliense Induces Macrophage Extracellular Traps with Facilitating Bacterial Growth

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Yina; Na, Yirang; Kim, Bum-Joon; Seok, Seung Hyeok

    2016-01-01

    Human neutrophils have been known to release neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), antimicrobial DNA structures capable of capturing and killing microbes. Recently, a similar phenomenon has been reported in macrophages infected with various pathogens. However, a role for macrophages extracellular traps (METs) in host defense responses against Mycobacterium massiliense (M. mass) has yet to be described. In this study, we show that M. mass, a rapid growing mycobacterium (RGM), also induces the release of METs from PMA-differentiated THP-1 cells. Intriguingly, this process is not dependent on NADPH oxidase activity, which regulates NET formation. Instead, M. mass-induced MET formation partially depends on calcium influx and requires phagocytosis of high bacterial load. The METs consist of a DNA backbone embedded with microbicidal proteins such as histone, MPO and elastase. Released METs entrap M. mass and prevent their dissemination, but do not have bactericidal activity. Instead, they result in enhanced bacterial growth. In this regard, METs were considered to provide interaction of M. mass with cells and an environment for bacterial aggregation, which may facilitate mycobacterial survival and growth. In conclusion, our results demonstrate METs as an innate defense response against M. mass infection, and suggest that extracellular traps play a multifaceted role in the interplay between host and bacteria. PMID:27191593

  1. Structural basis of Smoothened regulation by its extracellular domains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Byrne, Eamon F. X.; Sircar, Ria; Miller, Paul S.; Hedger, George; Luchetti, Giovanni; Nachtergaele, Sigrid; Tully, Mark D.; Mydock-McGrane, Laurel; Covey, Douglas F.; Rambo, Robert P.; Sansom, Mark S. P.; Newstead, Simon; Rohatgi, Rajat; Siebold, Christian

    2016-07-01

    Developmental signals of the Hedgehog (Hh) and Wnt families are transduced across the membrane by Frizzled-class G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) composed of both a heptahelical transmembrane domain (TMD) and an extracellular cysteine-rich domain (CRD). How the large extracellular domains of GPCRs regulate signalling by the TMD is unknown. We present crystal structures of the Hh signal transducer and oncoprotein Smoothened, a GPCR that contains two distinct ligand-binding sites: one in its TMD and one in the CRD. The CRD is stacked atop the TMD, separated by an intervening wedge-like linker domain. Structure-guided mutations show that the interface between the CRD, linker domain and TMD stabilizes the inactive state of Smoothened. Unexpectedly, we find a cholesterol molecule bound to Smoothened in the CRD binding site. Mutations predicted to prevent cholesterol binding impair the ability of Smoothened to transmit native Hh signals. Binding of a clinically used antagonist, vismodegib, to the TMD induces a conformational change that is propagated to the CRD, resulting in loss of cholesterol from the CRD-linker domain-TMD interface. Our results clarify the structural mechanism by which the activity of a GPCR is controlled by ligand-regulated interactions between its extracellular and transmembrane domains.

  2. Extracellular Alkalinization as a Defense Response in Potato Cells.

    PubMed

    Moroz, Natalia; Fritch, Karen R; Marcec, Matthew J; Tripathi, Diwaker; Smertenko, Andrei; Tanaka, Kiwamu

    2017-01-01

    A quantitative and robust bioassay to assess plant defense response is important for studies of disease resistance and also for the early identification of disease during pre- or non-symptomatic phases. An increase in extracellular pH is known to be an early defense response in plants. In this study, we demonstrate extracellular alkalinization as a defense response in potatoes. Using potato suspension cell cultures, we observed an alkalinization response against various pathogen- and plant-derived elicitors in a dose- and time-dependent manner. We also assessed the defense response against a variety of potato pathogens, such as protists (Phytophthora infestans and Spongospora subterranea) and fungi (Verticillium dahliae and Colletotrichum coccodes). Our results show that extracellular pH increases within 30 min in proportion to the number of pathogen spores added. Consistently with the alkalinization effect, the higher transcription level of several defense-related genes and production of reactive oxygen species was observed. Our results demonstrate that the alkalinization response is an effective marker to study early stages of defense response in potatoes.

  3. Extracellular rigidity sensing by talin isoform–specific mechanical linkages

    PubMed Central

    Austen, Katharina; Ringer, Pia; Mehlich, Alexander; Chrostek-Grashoff, Anna; Kluger, Carleen; Klingner, Christoph; Sabass, Benedikt; Zent, Roy; Rief, Matthias; Grashoff, Carsten

    2015-01-01

    The ability of cells to adhere and sense differences in tissue stiffness is crucial for organ development and function. The central mechanisms by which adherent cells detect extracellular matrix compliance, however, are still unknown. Using two single-molecule–calibrated biosensors that allow the analysis of a previously inaccessible but physiologically highly relevant force regime in cells, we demonstrate that the integrin activator talin establishes mechanical linkages upon cell adhesion, which are indispensable for cells to probe tissue stiffness. Talin linkages are exposed to a range of piconewton (pN) forces and bear, on average, 7–10 pN during cell adhesion depending on their association with f-actin and vinculin. Disruption of talin’s mechanical engagement does not impair integrin activation and initial cell adhesion but prevents focal adhesion reinforcement and thus extracellular rigidity sensing. Intriguingly, talin mechanics are isoform-specific so that expression of either talin-1 or talin-2 modulates extracellular rigidity sensing. PMID:26523364

  4. The Extracellular Matrix In Development and Morphogenesis: A Dynamic View

    PubMed Central

    Rozario, Tania; DeSimone, Douglas W.

    2009-01-01

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) is synthesized and secreted by embryonic cells beginning at the earliest stages of development. Our understanding of ECM composition, structure and function has grown considerably in the last several decades and this knowledge has revealed that the extracellular microenvironment is critically important for cell growth, survival, differentiation and morphogenesis. ECM and the cellular receptors that interact with it mediate both physical linkages with the cytoskeleton and the bidirectional flow of information between the extracellular and intracellular compartments. This review considers the range of cell and tissue functions attributed to ECM molecules and summarizes recent findings specific to key developmental processes. The importance of ECM as a dynamic repository for growth factors is highlighted along with more recent studies implicating the 3-dimensional organization and physical properties of the ECM as it relates to cell signaling and the regulation of morphogenetic cell behaviors. Embryonic cell and tissue generated forces and mechanical signals arising from ECM adhesion represent emerging areas of interest in this field. PMID:19854168

  5. Problems with extracellular recording of electrical activity in gastrointestinal muscle.

    PubMed

    Sanders, Kenton M; Ward, Sean M; Hennig, Grant W

    2016-12-01

    Motility patterns of the gastrointestinal tract are important for efficient processing of nutrients and waste. Peristalsis and segmentation are based on rhythmic electrical slow waves that generate the phasic contractions fundamental to gastrointestinal motility. Slow waves are generated and propagated actively by interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC), and these events conduct to smooth muscle cells to elicit excitation-contraction coupling. Extracellular electrical recording has been utilized to characterize slow-wave generation and propagation and abnormalities that might be responsible for gastrointestinal motility disorders. Electrode array recording and digital processing are being used to generate data for models of electrical propagation in normal and pathophysiological conditions. Here, we discuss techniques of extracellular recording as applied to gastrointestinal organs and how mechanical artefacts might contaminate these recordings and confound their interpretation. Without rigorous controls for movement, current interpretations of extracellular recordings might ascribe inaccurate behaviours and electrical anomalies to ICC networks and gastrointestinal muscles, bringing into question the findings and validity of models of gastrointestinal electrophysiology developed from these recordings.

  6. Extracellular release of antimicrobial defensins by human polymorphonuclear leukocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Ganz, T

    1987-01-01

    Human polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN) contain three antimicrobial and cytotoxic peptides which belong to a family of mammalian granulocyte peptides named defensins. To determine their potential availability for extracellular microbicidal or cytotoxic events, we quantified the extracellular release of defensins after stimulation of human PMN with phorbol myristate acetate and opsonized zymosan. As determined by enzyme immunoassay and confirmed by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and densitometry, 10(6) human PMN contained 4 to 5 micrograms of defensins. After stimulation with a high concentration of phorbol myristate acetate (1 microgram/ml), about 8% of PMN defensins were found in the media. Release of defensins correlated best with the release of azurophil granule marker beta-glucuronidase or elastase and poorly with the release of either the specific granule marker lactoferrin or cytoplasmic lactate dehydrogenase. Phagocytosis of opsonized zymosan resulted in the extracellular release of less than 3% of PMN defensins. The factors responsible for less release of defensins into media relative to the release of other azurophil granule proteins may include heterogeneity of azurophil granules and the affinity of defensins for cellular surfaces and opsonized particles. In vivo, defensins are most likely to reach effective microbicidal or cytotoxic concentrations in PMN-rich exudates (pus), in confined environments of the phagolysosomes, or in intercellular clefts between PMN and their targets. PMID:3643886

  7. Extracellular proteins of Cryptococcus neoformans and host antibody response.

    PubMed Central

    Chen, L C; Pirofski, L A; Casadevall, A

    1997-01-01

    Proteins secreted by the fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans may be involved in invasion and could be useful in vaccine design. Despite the medical importance of this fungus, little is known about its extracellular proteins or the immune response to these antigens. To study C. neoformans extracellular proteins, 12 strains were metabolically radiolabeled and protein supernatants were analyzed. Both strain- and growth condition-dependent differences were observed. Enzymatic assays of filtered culture supernatants revealed butyrate esterase and caprylate esterase lipase activity for 11 of 12 strains, as well as acid phosphatase, naphthol-AS-BI-phosphohydrolase, and beta-glucosidase activities in some strains. Serum from infected rodents immunoprecipitated several secreted proteins, consistent with in vivo expression and development of an antibody response. For strain 24067, two immunodominant species, of approximately 75 and 30 kDa, were recognized. The relative intensity of the autoradiographic bands depended on the route of infection for both rats and mice. In summary, our results indicate that (i) there are multiple proteins in C. neoformans culture supernatants, (ii) there are strain differences in supernatant protein profiles, (iii) there are differences in supernatant protein profile depending on the growth conditions, (iv) there are several new extracellular and/or cell-associated enzymatic activities, and (v) antibodies to several supernatant proteins are made in the course of infection. PMID:9199426

  8. Spike library based simulator for extracellular single unit neuronal signals.

    PubMed

    Thorbergsson, P T; Jorntell, H; Bengtsson, F; Garwicz, M; Schouenborg, J; Johansson, A

    2009-01-01

    A well defined set of design criteria is of great importance in the process of designing brain machine interfaces (BMI) based on extracellular recordings with chronically implanted micro-electrode arrays in the central nervous system (CNS). In order to compare algorithms and evaluate their performance under various circumstances, ground truth about their input needs to be present. Obtaining ground truth from real data would require optimal algorithms to be used, given that those exist. This is not possible since it relies on the very algorithms that are to be evaluated. Using realistic models of the recording situation facilitates the simulation of extracellular recordings. The simulation gives access to a priori known signal characteristics such as spike times and identities. In this paper, we describe a simulator based on a library of spikes obtained from recordings in the cat cerebellum and observed statistics of neuronal behavior during spontaneous activity. The simulator has proved to be useful in the task of generating extracellular recordings with realistic background noise and known ground truth to use in the evaluation of algorithms for spike detection and sorting.

  9. Diffusion in the extracellular space in brain and tumors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verkman, A. S.

    2013-08-01

    Diffusion of solutes and macromolecules in the extracellular space (ECS) in brain is important for non-synaptic intercellular communication, extracellular ionic buffering, and delivery of drugs and metabolites. Diffusion in tumor ECS is important for delivery of anti-tumor drugs. The ECS in brain comprises ˜20% of brain parenchymal volume and contains cell-cell gaps down to ˜50 nm. We have developed fluorescence methods to quantify solute diffusion in the ECS, allowing measurements deep in solid tissues using microfiberoptics with micron tip size. Diffusion through the tortuous ECS in brain is generally slowed by ˜3-5-fold compared with that in water, with approximately half of the slowing due to tortuous ECS geometry and half due to the mildly viscous extracellular matrix (ECM). Mathematical modeling of slowed diffusion in an ECS with reasonable anatomical accuracy is in good agreement with experiment. In tumor tissue, diffusion of small macromolecules is only mildly slowed (<3-fold slower than in water) in superficial tumor, but is greatly slowed (>10-fold) at a depth of few millimeters as the tumor tissue becomes more compact. Slowing by ECM components such as collagen contribute to the slowed diffusion. Therefore, as found within cells, cellular crowding and highly tortuous transport can produce only minor slowing of diffusion in the ECS.

  10. Pseudomonas deceptionensis DC5-mediated synthesis of extracellular silver nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Jo, Jae H; Singh, Priyanka; Kim, Yeon J; Wang, Chao; Mathiyalagan, Ramya; Jin, Chi-Gyu; Yang, Deok C

    2016-09-01

    The biological synthesis of metal nanoparticles is of great interest in the field of nanotechnology. The present work highlights the extracellular biological synthesis of silver nanoparticles using Pseudomonas deceptionensis DC5. The particles were synthesized in the culture supernatant within 48 h of incubation. Extracellular synthesis of silver nanoparticles in the culture supernatant was confirmed by ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy, which showed the absorption peak at 428 nm, and also under field emission transmission electron microscopy which displayed the spherical shape. In addition, the particles were characterized by X-ray diffraction spectroscopy, which corresponds to the crystalline nature of nanoparticles, and energy-dispersive X-ray analysis which exhibited the intense peak at 3 keV, resembling the silver nanoparticles. Further, the synthesized nanoparticles were examined by elemental mapping which displayed the dominance of the silver element in the synthesized product, and dynamic light scattering which showed the distribution of silver nanoparticles with respect to intensity, volume, and number of particles. Moreover, the silver nanoparticles have been found to be quite active in antimicrobial activity and biofilm inhibition activity against pathogenic microorganisms. Thus, the present work emphasized the prospect of using the P. deceptionensis DC5 to achieve the extracellular synthesis of silver nanoparticles in a facile and environmental manner.

  11. Applying Proteomics to Investigate Extracellular Matrix in Health and Disease.

    PubMed

    Randles, Michael; Lennon, Rachel

    2015-01-01

    The molecular composition of basement membranes (BMs) has traditionally been investigated by candidate-based approaches leading to the identification of key structural components as described in previous chapters. Laminins, collagen IV, nidogens, perlecan, and type XV/XVIII collagen are integral to BMs with isoforms showing tissue specificity. More recently the application of mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomics has led to the discovery of many more structural and regulatory components of BMs and more broadly, extracellular matrix (ECM). These investigations have revealed tissue-specific signatures of between 100 and 150 ECM components, demonstrating the complexity of the extracellular niche. In addition to providing a structural scaffold for cells, ECM is a dynamic extracellular environment capable of regulating the physical properties of tissues. Global investigations of ECM with proteomics in turn enable systems level analyses and when applied to health and disease states these investigations provide insights into pathways regulating matrix dysregulation. This chapter focuses on the methods used to extract ECM and on the analysis of its composition using MS-based proteomics, and it provides examples of how these approaches have been used to investigate health and disease states.

  12. Structural basis for Smoothened regulation by its extracellular domains

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Paul S.; Hedger, George; Luchetti, Giovanni; Nachtergaele, Sigrid; Tully, Mark D.; Mydock-McGrane, Laurel; Covey, Douglas F.; Rambo, Robert P.; Sansom, Mark S. P.; Rohatgi, Rajat; Siebold, Christian

    2016-01-01

    Developmental signals of the Hedgehog (Hh) and Wnt families are transduced across the membrane by Frizzled-class G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) composed of both a heptahelical transmembrane domain (TMD) and an extracellular cysteine-rich domain (CRD). How such large extracellular domains of GPCRs regulate signalling by the TMD is unknown. We present crystal structures of the Hh signal transducer and oncoprotein Smoothened (SMO), which contains two distinct ligand-binding sites in its TMD and CRD. The CRD is stacked atop the TMD, separated by an intervening wedge-like linker domain (LD). Structure-guided mutations show that the interface between the CRD, LD and TMD stabilises the inactive state of SMO. Unexpectedly, we find a cholesterol molecule bound to SMO in the CRD-binding site. Mutations predicted to prevent cholesterol binding impair the ability of SMO to transmit native Hh signals. Binding of a clinically used antagonist, vismodegib, to the TMD induces a conformational change that is propagated to the CRD, resulting in loss of cholesterol from the CRD-LD-TMD interface. Our work elucidates the structural mechanism by which the activity of a GPCR is controlled by ligand-regulated interactions between its extracellular and transmembrane domains. PMID:27437577

  13. Horizontal Transmission of Cytosolic Sup35 Prions by Extracellular Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Shu; Hossinger, André; Hofmann, Julia P.; Denner, Philip

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Prions are infectious protein particles that replicate by templating their aggregated state onto soluble protein of the same type. Originally identified as the causative agent of transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, prions in yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) are epigenetic elements of inheritance that induce phenotypic changes of their host cells. The prototype yeast prion is the translation termination factor Sup35. Prions composed of Sup35 or its modular prion domain NM are heritable and are transmitted vertically to progeny or horizontally during mating. Interestingly, in mammalian cells, protein aggregates derived from yeast Sup35 NM behave as true infectious entities that employ dissemination strategies similar to those of mammalian prions. While transmission is most efficient when cells are in direct contact, we demonstrate here that cytosolic Sup35 NM prions are also released into the extracellular space in association with nanometer-sized membrane vesicles. Importantly, extracellular vesicles are biologically active and are taken up by recipient cells, where they induce self-sustained Sup35 NM protein aggregation. Thus, in mammalian cells, extracellular vesicles can serve as dissemination vehicles for protein-based epigenetic information transfer. PMID:27406566

  14. Extracellular enzyme activities and nutrient availability during artificial groundwater recharge.

    PubMed

    Kolehmainen, Reija E; Korpela, Jaana P; Münster, Uwe; Puhakka, Jaakko A; Tuovinen, Olli H

    2009-02-01

    Natural organic matter (NOM) removal is the main objective of artificial groundwater recharge (AGR) for drinking water production and biodegradation plays a substantial role in this process. This study focused on the biodegradation of NOM and nutrient availability for microorganisms in AGR by the determination of extracellular enzyme activities (EEAs) and nutrient concentrations along a flow path in an AGR aquifer (Tuusula Water Works, Finland). Natural groundwater in the same area but outside the influence of recharge was used as a reference. Determination of the specific alpha-d-glucosidase (alpha-Glu), beta-d-glucosidase (beta-Glu), phosphomonoesterase (PME), leucine aminopeptidase (LAP) and acetate esterase (AEST) activities by fluorogenic model substrates revealed major increases in the enzymatic hydrolysis rates in the aquifer within a 10m distance from the basin. The changes in the EEAs along the flow path occurred simultaneously with decreases in nutrient concentrations. The results support the assumption that the synthesis of extracellular enzymes in aquatic environments is up and down regulated by nutrient availability. The EEAs in the basin sediment and pore water samples (down to 10cm) were in the same order of magnitude as in the basin water, suggesting similar nutritional conditions. Phosphorus was likely to be the limiting nutrient at this particular AGR site. Furthermore, the extracellular enzymes functioned in a synergistic and cooperative way.

  15. Compare, Contrast, Comprehend: Using Compare-Contrast Text Structures with ELLs in K-3 Classrooms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dreher, Mariam Jean; Gray, Jennifer Letcher

    2009-01-01

    In this article, we describe how to help primary-grade English language learners use compare-contrast text structures. Specifically, we explain (a) how to teach students to identify the compare-contrast text structure, and to use this structure to support their comprehension, (b) how to use compare-contrast texts to activate and extend students'…

  16. Contrastive Analysis and the Translation of Idioms: Some Remarks on Contrasting Idioms.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roos, Eckhard

    Contrastive analysis can help solve certain problems in translation, for example, that of idioms. A contrastive analysis of source language (SL) and target language (TL) might have as its theoretical framework a contrastive lexical analysis based on generative semantics. In this approach both SL and TL idioms are broken down into their semantic…

  17. Papers and Studies in Contrastive Linguistics, Volume 5. The Polish-English Contrastive Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fisiak, Jacek, Ed.

    This collection includes twenty-one papers, a book review, and a bibliography of English-Polish contrastive studies in Poland, and is the fifth volume resulting from the Polish-English Contrastive Project. The overall purpose of the project is to prepare a Polish-English contrastive grammar and to develop pedagogical materials. Topics covered in…

  18. Perceived Speed of Compound Stimuli Is Moderated by Component Contrast, Not Overall Pattern Contrast

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Peter

    2016-01-01

    The perception of speed is susceptible to manipulations of image contrast, both for simple sine wave and more complex stimuli, such that low-contrast patterns generally appear slower than their high-contrast equivalents. It is not known whether the crucial factor is the contrast of the underlying Fourier components or the contrast of the overall complex pattern. Here, two experiments investigate this issue using compound gratings, comprising two vertical sine wave stimuli with equal contrast, but a 3:1 spatial frequency ratio. Component gratings were summed in “peaks add” and in “peaks subtract” phase, creating conditions with either (a) identical component contrasts, despite differences in overall pattern contrast or (b) differences in component contrasts despite identical overall pattern contrast. Experiment 1 demonstrated that the perceived speed is determined by the contrast of the components regardless of relative phase and hence of overall pattern contrast. Experiment 2 replicated this result while eliminating potential explanations based on differences in spatial frequency content. Along with previous compound grating and plaid studies, the data support a two-stage velocity estimation process involving the derivation of separate speed signals for each Fourier component, followed by integration of these signals across spatial scales. PMID:27826408

  19. Extracellular Genomic DNA Mediates Enhancement of Xylella fastidiosa Biofilm Formation in Vitro

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Xylella fastidiosa (Xf) produces extracellular DNA in PD3 liquid medium. This extracellular DNA could enhance biofilm formation, a factor in successful establishment of Xf in planta. The relative amounts of extracellular DNA were positively correlated with planktonic growth and biofilm formation in ...

  20. Prolactin signaling through focal adhesion complexes is amplified by stiff extracellular matrices in breast cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Barcus, Craig E; Keely, Patricia J; Eliceiri, Kevin W; Schuler, Linda A

    2016-07-26

    Estrogen receptor α positive (ERα+) breast cancer accounts for most breast cancer deaths. Both prolactin (PRL) and extracellular matrix (ECM) stiffness/density have been implicated in metastatic progression of this disease. We previously demonstrated that these factors cooperate to fuel processes involved in cancer progression. Culture of ERα+ breast cancer cells in dense/stiff 3D collagen-I matrices shifts the repertoire of PRL signals, and increases crosstalk between PRL and estrogen to promote proliferation and invasion. However, previous work did not distinguish ECM stiffness and collagen density. In order to dissect the ECM features that control PRL signals, we cultured T47D and MCF-7 cells on polyacrylamide hydrogels of varying elastic moduli (stiffness) with varying collagen-I concentrations (ligand density). Increasing stiffness from physiological to pathological significantly augmented PRL-induced phosphorylation of ERK1/2 and the SFK target, FAK-Y925, with only modest effects on pSTAT5. In contrast, higher collagen-I ligand density lowered PRL-induced pSTAT5 with no effect on pERK1/2 or pFAK-Y925. Disrupting focal adhesion signaling decreased PRL signals and PRL/estrogen-induced proliferation more efficiently in stiff, compared to compliant, extracellular environments. These data indicate that matrix stiffness shifts the balance of PRL signals from physiological (JAK2/STAT5) to pathological (FAK/SFK/ERK1/2) by increasing PRL signals through focal adhesions. Together, our studies suggest that PRL signaling to FAK and SFKs may be useful targets in clinical aggressive ERα+ breast carcinomas.

  1. Prolactin signaling through focal adhesion complexes is amplified by stiff extracellular matrices in breast cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Barcus, Craig E.; Keely, Patricia J.; Eliceiri, Kevin W.; Schuler, Linda A.

    2016-01-01

    Estrogen receptor α positive (ERα+) breast cancer accounts for most breast cancer deaths. Both prolactin (PRL) and extracellular matrix (ECM) stiffness/density have been implicated in metastatic progression of this disease. We previously demonstrated that these factors cooperate to fuel processes involved in cancer progression. Culture of ERα+ breast cancer cells in dense/stiff 3D collagen-I matrices shifts the repertoire of PRL signals, and increases crosstalk between PRL and estrogen to promote proliferation and invasion. However, previous work did not distinguish ECM stiffness and collagen density. In order to dissect the ECM features that control PRL signals, we cultured T47D and MCF-7 cells on polyacrylamide hydrogels of varying elastic moduli (stiffness) with varying collagen-I concentrations (ligand density). Increasing stiffness from physiological to pathological significantly augmented PRL-induced phosphorylation of ERK1/2 and the SFK target, FAK-Y925, with only modest effects on pSTAT5. In contrast, higher collagen-I ligand density lowered PRL-induced pSTAT5 with no effect on pERK1/2 or pFAK-Y925. Disrupting focal adhesion signaling decreased PRL signals and PRL/estrogen-induced proliferation more efficiently in stiff, compared to compliant, extracellular environments. These data indicate that matrix stiffness shifts the balance of PRL signals from physiological (JAK2/STAT5) to pathological (FAK/SFK/ERK1/2) by increasing PRL signals through focal adhesions. Together, our studies suggest that PRL signaling to FAK and SFKs may be useful targets in clinical aggressive ERα+ breast carcinomas. PMID:27344177

  2. The electrically conductive pili of Geobacter species are a recently evolved feature for extracellular electron transfer

    PubMed Central

    Dang, Yan; Walker, David J. F.; Lovley, Derek R.

    2016-01-01

    The electrically conductive pili (e-pili) of Geobactersulfurreducens have environmental and practical significance because they can facilitate electron transfer to insoluble Fe(III) oxides; to other microbial species; and through electrically conductive biofilms. E-pili conductivity has been attributed to the truncated PilA monomer, which permits tight packing of aromatic amino acids to form a conductive path along the length of e-pili. In order to better understand the evolution and distribution of e-pili in the microbial world, type IVa PilA proteins from various Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria were examined with a particular emphasis on Fe(III)-respiring bacteria. E-pilin genes are primarily restricted to a tight phylogenetic group in the order Desulfuromonadales. The downstream gene in all but one of the Desulfuromonadales that possess an e-pilin gene is a gene previously annotated as ‘pilA–C’ that has characteristics suggesting that it may encode an outer-membrane protein. Other genes associated with pilin function are clustered with e-pilin and ‘pilA–C’ genes in the Desulfuromonadales. In contrast, in the few bacteria outside the Desulfuromonadales that contain e-pilin genes, the other genes required for pilin function may have been acquired through horizontal gene transfer. Of the 95 known Fe(III)-reducing micro-organisms for which genomes are available, 80 % lack e-pilin genes, suggesting that e-pili are just one of several mechanisms involved in extracellular electron transport. These studies provide insight into where and when e-pili are likely to contribute to extracellular electron transport processes that are biogeochemically important and involved in bioenergy conversions. PMID:28348867

  3. Protein Modification by Deamidation Indicates Variations in Joint Extracellular Matrix Turnover*

    PubMed Central

    Catterall, Jonathan B.; Hsueh, Ming F.; Stabler, Thomas V.; McCudden, Christopher R.; Bolognesi, Michael; Zura, Robert; Jordan, Joanne M.; Renner, Jordan B.; Feng, Sheng; Kraus, Virginia B.

    2012-01-01

    As extracellular proteins age, they undergo and accumulate nonenzymatic post-translational modifications that cannot be repaired. We hypothesized that these could be used to systemically monitor loss of extracellular matrix due to chronic arthritic diseases such as osteoarthritis (OA). To test this, we predicted sites of deamidation in cartilage oligomeric matrix protein (COMP) and confirmed, by mass spectroscopy, the presence of deamidated (Asp64) and native (Asn64) COMP epitopes (mean 0.95% deamidated COMP (D-COMP) relative to native COMP) in cartilage. An Asp64, D-COMP-specific ELISA was developed using a newly created monoclonal antibody 6-1A12. In a joint replacement study, serum D-COMP (p = 0.017), but not total COMP (p = 0.5), declined significantly after replacement demonstrating a joint tissue source for D-COMP. In analyses of 450 participants from the Johnston County Osteoarthritis Project controlled for age, gender, and race, D-COMP was associated with radiographic hip (p < 0.0001) but not knee (p = 0.95) OA severity. In contrast, total COMP was associated with radiographic knee (p < 0.0001) but not hip (p = 0.47) OA severity. D-COMP was higher in soluble proteins extracted from hip cartilage proximal to OA lesions compared with remote from lesions (p = 0.007) or lesional and remote OA knee (p < 0.01) cartilage. Total COMP in cartilage did not vary by joint site or proximity to the lesion. This study demonstrates the presence of D-COMP in articular cartilage and the systemic circulation, and to our knowledge, it is the first biomarker to show specificity for a particular joint site. We believe that enrichment of deamidated epitope in hip OA cartilage indicates a lesser repair response of hip OA compared with knee OA cartilage. PMID:22179616

  4. Estimating Extracellular Spike Waveforms from CA1 Pyramidal Cells with Multichannel Electrodes

    PubMed Central

    Molden, Sturla; Moldestad, Olve; Storm, Johan F.

    2013-01-01

    Extracellular (EC) recordings of action potentials from the intact brain are embedded in background voltage fluctuations known as the “local field potential” (LFP). In order to use EC spike recordings for studying biophysical properties of neurons, the spike waveforms must be separated from the LFP. Linear low-pass and high-pass filters are usually insufficient to separate spike waveforms from LFP, because they have overlapping frequency bands. Broad-band recordings of LFP and spikes were obtained with a 16-channel laminar electrode array (silicone probe). We developed an algorithm whereby local LFP signals from spike-containing channel were modeled using locally weighted polynomial regression analysis of adjoining channels without spikes. The modeled LFP signal was subtracted from the recording to estimate the embedded spike waveforms. We tested the method both on defined spike waveforms added to LFP recordings, and on in vivo-recorded extracellular spikes from hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells in anaesthetized mice. We show that the algorithm can correctly extract the spike waveforms embedded in the LFP. In contrast, traditional high-pass filters failed to recover correct spike shapes, albeit produceing smaller standard errors. We found that high-pass RC or 2-pole Butterworth filters with cut-off frequencies below 12.5 Hz, are required to retrieve waveforms comparable to our method. The method was also compared to spike-triggered averages of the broad-band signal, and yielded waveforms with smaller standard errors and less distortion before and after the spike. PMID:24391714

  5. Prevention of Biofilm Formation and Removal of Existing Biofilms by Extracellular DNases of Campylobacter jejuni

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Helen L.; Reuter, Mark; Hanman, Kate; Betts, Roy P.; van Vliet, Arnoud H. M.

    2015-01-01

    The fastidious nature of the foodborne bacterial pathogen Campylobacter jejuni contrasts with its ability to survive in the food chain. The formation of biofilms, or the integration into existing biofilms by C. jejuni, is thought to contribute to food chain survival. As extracellular DNA (eDNA) has previously been proposed to play a role in C. jejuni biofilms, we have investigated the role of extracellular DNases (eDNases) produced by C. jejuni in biofilm formation. A search of 2791 C. jejuni genomes highlighted that almost half of C. jejuni genomes contains at least one eDNase gene, but only a minority of isolates contains two or three of these eDNase genes, such as C. jejuni strain RM1221 which contains the cje0256, cje0566 and cje1441 eDNase genes. Strain RM1221 did not form biofilms, whereas the eDNase-negative strains NCTC 11168 and 81116 did. Incubation of pre-formed biofilms of NCTC 11168 with live C. jejuni RM1221 or with spent medium from a RM1221 culture resulted in removal of the biofilm. Inactivation of the cje1441 eDNase gene in strain RM1221 restored biofilm formation, and made the mutant unable to degrade biofilms of strain NCTC 11168. Finally, C. jejuni strain RM1221 was able to degrade genomic DNA from C. jejuni NCTC 11168, 81116 and RM1221, whereas strain NCTC 11168 and the RM1221 cje1441 mutant were unable to do so. This was mirrored by an absence of eDNA in overnight cultures of C. jejuni RM1221. This suggests that the activity of eDNases in C. jejuni affects biofilm formation and is not conducive to a biofilm lifestyle. These eDNases do however have a potential role in controlling biofilm formation by C. jejuni strains in food chain relevant environments. PMID:25803828

  6. Differential expression of intracellular and extracellular CB(2) cannabinoid receptor protein by human peripheral blood leukocytes.

    PubMed

    Castaneda, Julie T; Harui, Airi; Kiertscher, Sylvia M; Roth, Jeffrey D; Roth, Michael D

    2013-03-01

    mRNA encoding for the CB(2) cannabinoid receptor is expressed by many subsets of human peripheral blood leukocytes (PBL), but little is known about the resulting protein expression and function. Employing clones from the A549 and 293T cell lines that were constructed to express both full-length human CB(2) and GFP, we developed a flow cytometry assay for characterizing CB(2) protein expression. A monoclonal antibody directed against human CB(2) selectively stained the surface of transduced but not parental cell lines. When cells were fixed and permeabilized, imaging flow cytometry identified large stores of intracellular protein. Total cellular staining for CB(2) corresponded closely with the level of GFP expression. When exposed to Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol, CB(2)-expressing cells internalized cell surface CB(2) receptors in a time- and dose-dependent manner. Applying these approaches to human PBL, CB(2) protein was identified on the surface of human B cells but not on T cells or monocytes. In contrast, when PBL were fixed and permeabilized, intracellular CB(2) expression was readily detected in all three subsets by both conventional and imaging flow cytometry. Similar to the protein expression pattern observed in fixed and permeabilized PBL, purified B cells, T cells, and monocytes expressed relatively equal levels of CB(2) mRNA by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Our findings confirm that human PBL express CB(2) protein but that its distribution is predominantly intracellular with only B cells expressing CB(2) protein at the extracellular membrane. The differential role of intracellular and extracellular CB(2) receptors in mediating ligand signaling and immune function remains to be determined.

  7. Dynamic culture substrate that captures a specific extracellular matrix protein in response to light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakanishi, Jun; Nakayama, Hidekazu; Yamaguchi, Kazuo; Garcia, Andres J.; Horiike, Yasuhiro

    2011-08-01

    The development of methods for the off-on switching of immobilization or presentation of cell-adhesive peptides and proteins during cell culture is important because such surfaces are useful for the analysis of the dynamic processes of cell adhesion and migration. This paper describes a chemically functionalized gold substrate that captures a genetically tagged extracellular matrix protein in response to light. The substrate was composed of mixed self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of three disulfide compounds containing (i) a photocleavable poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG), (ii) nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA) and (iii) hepta(ethylene glycol) (EG7). Although the NTA group has an intrinsic high affinity for oligohistidine tag (His-tag) sequences in its Ni2+-ion complex, the interaction was suppressed by the steric hindrance of coexisting PEG on the substrate surface. Upon photoirradiation of the substrate to release the PEG chain from the surface, this interaction became possible and hence the protein was captured at the irradiated regions, while keeping the non-specific adsorption of non-His-tagged proteins blocked by the EG7 underbrush. In this way, we selectively immobilized a His-tagged fibronectin fragment (FNIII7-10) to the irradiated regions. In contrast, when bovine serum albumin—a major serum protein—was added as a non-His-tagged protein, the surface did not permit its capture, with or without irradiation. In agreement with these results, cells were selectively attached to the irradiated patterns only when a His-tagged FNIII7-10 was added to the medium. These results indicate that the present method is useful for studying the cellular behavior on the specific extracellular matrix protein in cell-culturing environments.

  8. Prevention of biofilm formation and removal of existing biofilms by extracellular DNases of Campylobacter jejuni.

    PubMed

    Brown, Helen L; Reuter, Mark; Hanman, Kate; Betts, Roy P; van Vliet, Arnoud H M

    2015-01-01

    The fastidious nature of the foodborne bacterial pathogen Campylobacter jejuni contrasts with its ability to survive in the food chain. The formation of biofilms, or the integration into existing biofilms by C. jejuni, is thought to contribute to food chain survival. As extracellular DNA (eDNA) has previously been proposed to play a role in C. jejuni biofilms, we have investigated the role of extracellular DNases (eDNases) produced by C. jejuni in biofilm formation. A search of 2791 C. jejuni genomes highlighted that almost half of C. jejuni genomes contains at least one eDNase gene, but only a minority of isolates contains two or three of these eDNase genes, such as C. jejuni strain RM1221 which contains the cje0256, cje0566 and cje1441 eDNase genes. Strain RM1221 did not form biofilms, whereas the eDNase-negative strains NCTC 11168 and 81116 did. Incubation of pre-formed biofilms of NCTC 11168 with live C. jejuni RM1221 or with spent medium from a RM1221 culture resulted in removal of the biofilm. Inactivation of the cje1441 eDNase gene in strain RM1221 restored biofilm formation, and made the mutant unable to degrade biofilms of strain NCTC 11168. Finally, C. jejuni strain RM1221 was able to degrade genomic DNA from C. jejuni NCTC 11168, 81116 and RM1221, whereas strain NCTC 11168 and the RM1221 cje1441 mutant were unable to do so. This was mirrored by an absence of eDNA in overnight cultures of C. jejuni RM1221. This suggests that the activity of eDNases in C. jejuni affects biofilm formation and is not conducive to a biofilm lifestyle. These eDNases do however have a potential role in controlling biofilm formation by C. jejuni strains in food chain relevant environments.

  9. Extracellular volume fraction mapping in the myocardium, part 1: evaluation of an automated method

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Disturbances in the myocardial extracellular volume fraction (ECV), such as diffuse or focal myocardial fibrosis or edema, are hallmarks of heart disease. Diffuse ECV changes are difficult to assess or quantify with cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) using conventional late gadolinium enhancement (LGE), or pre- or post-contrast T1-mapping alone. ECV measurement circumvents factors that confound T1-weighted images or T1-maps, and has been shown to correlate well with diffuse myocardial fibrosis. The goal of this study was to develop and evaluate an automated method for producing a pixel-wise map of ECV that would be adequately robust for clinical work flow. Methods ECV maps were automatically generated from T1-maps acquired pre- and post-contrast calibrated by blood hematocrit. The algorithm incorporates correction of respiratory motion that occurs due to insufficient breath-holding and due to misregistration between breath-holds, as well as automated identification of the blood pool. Images were visually scored on a 5-point scale from non-diagnostic (1) to excellent (5). Results The quality score of ECV maps was 4.23 ± 0.83 (m ± SD), scored for n = 600 maps from 338 patients with 83% either excellent or good. Co-registration of the pre-and post-contrast images improved the image quality for ECV maps in 81% of the cases. ECV of normal myocardium was 25.4 ± 2.5% (m ± SD) using motion correction and co-registration values and was 31.5 ± 8.7% without motion correction and co-registration. Conclusions Fully automated motion correction and co-registration of breath-holds significantly improve the quality of ECV maps, thus making the generation of ECV-maps feasible for clinical work flow. PMID:22963517

  10. [Adverse reaction to not iodinated contrast].

    PubMed

    Palma-Gómez, Samuel; González-Díaz, Sandra Nora; Arias-Cruz, Alfredo; Macías-Weinmann, Alejandra; Amaro-Vivian, Laura Elizabeth; Pérez-Vanzzini, Rafael; Gutiérrez-Mujica, José Julio; Yong-Rodríguez, Adrián

    2014-01-01

    Adverse reactions to drugs are relatively frequent in clinical practice, and some of them can be life threatening. Reactions to contrast material (CM) represent an important percentage of these adverse reactions. It has been found that 70% of reactions to contrast material happen within the first five minutes of their administration. Despite the fact that hypersensitivity reactions are traditionally classified as non-allergic, in recent years investigators have reported positive skin prick tests in patients with immediate and late reactions to contrast material. This paper reports the case of a female patient with non-Hodgkin lymphoma that has presented on two distinct occasions adverse reactions to contrast material. We discuss on the type of reaction, severity, suggested prophylaxis, prognosis and recommendations, keeping in mind the underlying disease and the need to have further image studies performed.

  11. Ultrasound microbubble contrast and current clinical applications.

    PubMed

    Dindyal, Shiva; Kyriakides, Constantinos

    2011-01-01

    Ultrasound imaging is widely used worldwide principally because it is cheap, easily available and contains no exposure to ionizing radiation. The advent of microbubble ultrasound contrast has further increased the diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of this technique thus widening its clinical applications. The third generation of ultrasound contrast agents consist of sulphur hexafluoride microbubbles encased in a phospholipid shell. This review will elaborate on the pharmacology, safety profile and method of action of these agents. We also aim to discuss the ever expanding uses for contrast enhanced ultrasound in a number of clinical specialities which include the liver, kidney, prostate, sentinel node detection, vascular tree and endovascular stent surveillance. We will also discuss some of the recent patents regarding the future uses of ultrasound microbubble contrast and recent technological advances in clinical applications.

  12. Contrast optimization in broadband passive polarimetric imaging.

    PubMed

    Boffety, Matthieu; Hu, Haofeng; Goudail, François

    2014-12-01

    Polarimetric imaging is often performed using light with a narrow spectrum for the sake of polarization measurement accuracy. However, due to the use of narrowband filters, this reduces the amount of light entering the system and thus the signal-to-noise ratio. This may not be the best choice for target detection applications, where a high target contrast is required rather than polarimetric accuracy. We address contrast optimization for broadband passive polarimetric imaging. We show through simulation and experiments that polarimetric contrast can be significantly increased by broadening the spectrum of analyzed light. In addition, we show that the contrast can be optimized by taking into account the spectral dependence of the scene and of the polarization analysis devices.

  13. Phase contrast imaging of cochlear soft tissue

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shintani Smith, Stephanie; Hwang, Margaret; Rau, Christoph; Fishman, Andrew J.; Lee, Wah-Keat; Richter, Claus-Peter

    2011-03-01

    A noninvasive technique to image soft tissue could expedite diagnosis and disease management in the auditory system. We propose inline phase contrast imaging with hard X-rays as a novel method that overcomes the limitations of conventional absorption radiography for imaging soft tissue. In this study, phase contrast imaging of mouse cochleae was performed at the Argonne National Laboratory Advanced Photon Source. The phase contrast tomographic reconstructions show soft tissue structures of the cochlea, including the inner pillar cells, the inner spiral sulcus, the tectorial membrane, the basilar membrane, and the Reissner's membrane. The results suggest that phase contrast X-ray imaging and tomographic techniques hold promise to noninvasively image cochlear structures at an unprecedented cellular level.

  14. Incompatibility of Contrast Medium and Trisodium Citrate

    SciTech Connect

    Delcour, Christian Bruninx, Guy

    2013-02-15

    To test the compatibility of trisodium citrate, a catheter lock solution, with iodinated contrast medium. Iohexol, iobitridol, iodixanol, ioxaglate, ioxithalamate, iomeprol, and iopromide were tested. In all tests, 2 ml of contrast medium were mixed with 2 ml of trisodium citrate solution. Iodixanol and ioxaglate provoked a highly viscous gluelike precipitation when mixed with trisodium citrate. A brief transient precipitate was observed with iohexol, iomeprol, and ioxithalamate. Permanent precipitation occurred with iobitridol and iopromide. One must be aware of the potential for precipitation when contrast medium is mixed with trisodium citrate solution. Before trisodium citrate solution is injected, the catheter should be thoroughly flushed with saline if a contrast medium has previously been injected through it.

  15. Cytoskeletal filament assembly and the control of cell spreading and function by extracellular matrix

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mooney, D. J.; Langer, R.; Ingber, D. E.

    1995-01-01

    This study was undertaken to analyze how cell binding to extracellular matrix produces changes in cell shape. We focused on the initial process of cell spreading that follows cell attachment to matrix and, thus, cell 'shape' changes are defined here in terms of alterations in projected cell areas, as determined by computerized image analysis. Cell spreading kinetics and changes in microtubule and actin microfilament mass were simultaneously quantitated in hepatocytes plated on different extracellular matrix substrata. The initial rate of cell spreading was highly dependent on the matrix coating density and decreased from 740 microns 2/h to 50 microns 2/h as the coating density was lowered from 1000 to 1 ng/cm2. At approximately 4 to 6 hours after plating, this initial rapid spreading rate slowed and became independent of the matrix density regardless of whether laminin, fibronectin, type I collagen or type IV collagen was used for cell attachment. Analysis of F-actin mass revealed that cell adhesion to extracellular matrix resulted in a 20-fold increase in polymerized actin within 30 minutes after plating, before any significant change in cell shape was observed. This was followed by a phase of actin microfilament disassembly which correlated with the most rapid phase of cell extension and ended at about 6 hours; F-actin mass remained relatively constant during the slow matrix-independent spreading phase. Microtubule mass increased more slowly in spreading cells, peaking at 4 hours, the time at which the transition between rapid and slow spreading rates was observed. However, inhibition of this early rise in microtubule mass using either nocodazole or cycloheximide did not prevent this transition. Use of cytochalasin D revealed that microfilament integrity was absolutely required for hepatocyte spreading whereas interference with microtubule assembly (using nocodazole or taxol) or protein synthesis (using cycloheximide) only partially suppressed cell extension. In

  16. Contrast gain-control in stereo depth and cyclopean contrast perception.

    PubMed

    Hou, Fang; Huang, Chang-Bing; Liang, Ju; Zhou, Yifeng; Lu, Zhong-Lin

    2013-01-01

    Although human observers can perceive depth from stereograms with considerable contrast difference between the images presented to the two eyes (Legge & Gu, 1989), how contrast gain control functions in stereo depth perception has not been systematically investigated. Recently, we developed a multipathway contrast gain-control model (MCM) for binocular phase and contrast perception (Huang, Zhou, Lu, & Zhou, 2011; Huang, Zhou, Zhou, & Lu, 2010) based on a contrast gain-control model of binocular phase combination (Ding & Sperling, 2006). To extend the MCM to simultaneously account for stereo depth and cyclopean contrast perception, we manipulated the contrasts (ranging from 0.08 to 0.4) of the dynamic random dot stereograms (RDS) presented to the left and right eyes independently and measured both disparity thresholds for depth perception and perceived contrasts of the cyclopean images. We found that both disparity threshold and perceived contrast depended strongly on the signal contrasts in the two eyes, exhibiting characteristic binocular contrast gain-control properties. The results were well accounted for by an extended MCM model, in which each eye exerts gain control on the other eye's signal in proportion to its own signal contrast energy and also gain control over the other eye's gain control; stereo strength is proportional to the product of the signal strengths in the two eyes after contrast gain control, and perceived contrast is computed by combining contrast energy from the two eyes. The new model provided an excellent account of our data (r(2) = 0.945), as well as some challenging results in the literature.

  17. NASA High Contrast Imaging for Exoplanets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lyon, Richard G.

    2008-01-01

    Described is NASA's ongoing program for the detection and characterization of exosolar planets via high-contrast imaging. Some of the more promising proposed techniques under assessment may enable detection of life outside our solar system. In visible light terrestrial planets are approximately 10(exp -10) dimmer than the parent star. Issues such as diffraction, scatter, wavefront, amplitude and polarization all contribute to a reduction in contrast. An overview of the techniques will be discussed.

  18. Phase-contrast scanning transmission electron microscopy.

    PubMed

    Minoda, Hiroki; Tamai, Takayuki; Iijima, Hirofumi; Hosokawa, Fumio; Kondo, Yukihito

    2015-06-01

    This report introduces the first results obtained using phase-contrast scanning transmission electron microscopy (P-STEM). A carbon-film phase plate (PP) with a small center hole is placed in the condenser aperture plane so that a phase shift is introduced in the incident electron waves except those passing through the center hole. A cosine-type phase-contrast transfer function emerges when the phase-shifted scattered waves interfere with the non-phase-shifted unscattered waves, which passed through the center hole before incidence onto the specimen. The phase contrast resulting in P-STEM is optically identical to that in phase-contrast transmission electron microscopy that is used to provide high contrast for weak phase objects. Therefore, the use of PPs can enhance the phase contrast of the STEM images of specimens in principle. The phase shift resulting from the PP, whose thickness corresponds to a phase shift of π, has been confirmed using interference fringes displayed in the Ronchigram of a silicon single crystal specimen. The interference fringes were found to abruptly shift at the edge of the PP hole by π.

  19. Potential functional applications of extracellular vesicles: a report by the NIH Common Fund Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium.

    PubMed

    Quesenberry, Peter J; Aliotta, Jason; Camussi, Giovanni; Abdel-Mageed, Asim B; Wen, Sicheng; Goldberg, Laura; Zhang, Huang-Ge; Tetta, Ciro; Franklin, Jeffrey; Coffey, Robert J; Danielson, Kirsty; Subramanya, Vinita; Ghiran, Ionita; Das, Saumya; Chen, Clark C; Pusic, Kae M; Pusic, Aya D; Chatterjee, Devasis; Kraig, Richard P; Balaj, Leonora; Dooner, Mark

    2015-01-01

    The NIH Extracellular RNA Communication Program's initiative on clinical utility of extracellular RNAs and therapeutic agents and developing scalable technologies is reviewed here. Background information and details of the projects are presented. The work has focused on modulation of target cell fate by extracellular vesicles (EVs) and RNA. Work on plant-derived vesicles is of intense interest, and non-mammalian sources of vesicles may represent a very promising source for different therapeutic approaches. Retro-viral-like particles are intriguing. Clearly, EVs share pathways with the assembly machinery of several other viruses, including human endogenous retrovirals (HERVs), and this convergence may explain the observation of viral-like particles containing viral proteins and nucleic acid in EVs. Dramatic effect on regeneration of damaged bone marrow, renal, pulmonary and cardiovascular tissue is demonstrated and discussed. These studies show restoration of injured cell function and the importance of heterogeneity of different vesicle populations. The potential for neural regeneration is explored, and the capacity to promote and reverse neoplasia by EV exposure is described. The tremendous clinical potential of EVs underlies many of these projects, and the importance of regulatory issues and the necessity of general manufacturing production (GMP) studies for eventual clinical trials are emphasized. Clinical trials are already being pursued and should expand dramatically in the near future.

  20. Contrast-Medium-Enhanced Digital Mammography: Contrast vs. Iodine Concentration Phantom Calibration

    SciTech Connect

    Rosado-Mendez, I.; Brandan, M. E.; Villasenor, Y.; Benitez-Bribiesca, L.

    2008-08-11

    This work deals with the application of the contrast-medium-enhanced digital subtraction mammography technique in order to calibrate the contrast level in subtracted phantom images as function of iodine concentration to perform dynamic studies of the contrast-medium uptake in the breast. Previously optimized dual-energy temporal subtraction modalities were used (a) to determine radiological parameters for a dynamic clinical study composed of 1 mask+3 post-contrast images limiting the total mean glandular dose to 2.5 mGy, and (b) to perform a contrast vs iodine concentration calibration using a custom-made phantom. Calculated exposure values were applied using a commercial full-field digital mammography unit. Contrast in subtracted phantom images (one mask and one post-CM) is linear as function of iodine concentration, although the sensitivity (contrast per iodine concentration) decreases beyond 8 mg/mL. This calibration seems to apply only to thin and normal thickness breasts.

  1. Modulation of extracellular neurotransmitter levels in the nucleus accumbens by a taurine uptake inhibitor.

    PubMed

    Olive, M F; Mehmert, K K; Hodge, C W

    2000-12-15

    Using in vivo microdialysis, we examined the effect of local perfusion of the taurine uptake inhibitor guanidinoethyl sulfonate on extracellular levels of various neurotransmitters in the rat nucleus accumbens. Guanidinoethyl sulfonate (500 microM-50 mM) produced a concentration-dependent increase in extracellular taurine levels. While 500 microM and 5 mM concentrations of guanidinoethyl sulfonate were largely without effect, 50 mM guanidinoethyl sulfonate produced a significant decrease in extracellular levels of aspartate, glutamate and glycine, with no effect on extracellular dopamine levels. These results indicate that guanidinoethyl sulfonate can modulate extracellular amino acid levels in the nucleus accumbens.

  2. Papers and Studies in Contrastive Linguistics. Volume Eighteen.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fisiak, Jacek, Ed.; Drozdzial, Krystyna, Ed.

    A collection of 14 papers in contrastive linguistics includes: "Some Comments on Language Data in Contrastive Analysis" (Ruta Nagucka); "Contrastive Sociolinguistics Reconsidered" (Karol Janicki); "Variations in Polish Nasal /e/: A Contribution to the Development of Contrastive Sociolinguistic Methodology" (Jane…

  3. Intensity contrast of solar network and faculae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeo, K. L.; Solanki, S. K.; Krivova, N. A.

    2013-02-01

    Aims: This study aims at setting observational constraints on the continuum and line core intensity contrast of network and faculae, specifically, their relationship with magnetic field and disc position. Methods: Full-disc magnetograms and intensity images by the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI) onboard the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) were employed. Bright magnetic features, representing network and faculae, were identified and the relationship between their intensity contrast at continuum and line core with magnetogram signal and heliocentric angle examined. Care was taken to minimize the inclusion of the magnetic canopy and straylight from sunspots and pores as network and faculae. Results: In line with earlier studies, network features, on a per unit magnetic flux basis, appeared brighter than facular features. Intensity contrasts in the continuum and line core differ considerably, most notably, they exhibit opposite centre-to-limb variations. We found this difference in behaviour to likely be due to the different mechanisms of the formation of the two spectral components. From a simple model based on bivariate polynomial fits to the measured contrasts we confirmed spectral line changes to be a significant driver of facular contribution to variation in solar irradiance. The discrepancy between the continuum contrast reported here and in the literature was shown to arise mainly from differences in spatial resolution and treatment of magnetic signals adjacent to sunspots and pores. Conclusions: HMI is a source of accurate contrasts and low-noise magnetograms covering the full solar disc. For irradiance studies it is important to consider not just the contribution from the continuum but also from the spectral lines. In order not to underestimate long-term variations in solar irradiance, irradiance models should take the greater contrast per unit magnetic flux associated with magnetic features with low magnetic flux into account.

  4. Post-Contrast Myocardial T1 and ECV Disagree in a Longitudinal Canine Study

    PubMed Central

    Koopmann, Matthias; Hong, Kyung Pyo; Kholmovski, Eugene G.; Huang, Eric C.; Hu, Nan; Ying, Jian; Levenson, Richard; Vijayakumar, Sathya; Dosdall, Derek J.; Ranjan, Ravi; Kim, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Both post-contrast myocardial T1 and extracellular volume (ECV) measurements have been associated with interstitial fibrosis. The cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) field is migrating towards ECV, because it is largely insensitive to confounders that affect post-contrast myocardial T1. Despite the theoretical advantages of myocardial ECV over post-contrast myocardial T1, systematic experimental studies comparing the two measurements are largely lacking. We sought to measure the temporal changes in post-contrast myocardial T1 and ECV in an established canine model with chronic atrial fibrillation. Seventeen mongrel dogs, implanted with a pacemaker to induce chronic atrial fibrillation via rapid atrial pacing, were scanned multiple times for a total of 46 CMR scans at 3T. These dogs with different disease durations (0–22 months) were part of a separate longitudinal study aimed at studying the relationship between AF and patho-physiology. In each animal, we measured native and post-contrast T1s and hematocrit. Temporal changes in post-contrast myocardial T1 and ECV, as well as other CMR parameters, were modeled with linear mixed effect models to account for repeated measurements over disease duration. In 17 animals, post-contrast myocardial T1 decreased significantly from 872 to 698 ms (p< 0.001), which corresponds to a 24.9% relative reduction. In contrast, ECV increased from 21.0 to 22.0% (p=0.38), which corresponds to only a 4.5% relative increase. To partially investigate this discrepancy, we quantified collagen volume fraction (CVF) in post-mortem heart tissues of 6 canines sacrificed at different disease duration (0–22 months). CVF quantified by histology increased from 0.9 to 1.9% (p=0.56), which agrees more with ECV than post-contrast myocardial T1. This study shows that post-contrast myocardial T1 and ECV may disagree in a longitudinal canine study. A more comprehensive study, including histologic, cardiac, and renal functional analyses, is warranted

  5. Supporting-cell and extracellular responses to acoustic clicks in the free-standing region of the alligator lizard cochlea.

    PubMed

    Baden-Kristensen, K; Weiss, T F

    1982-12-01

    1. Acoustic clocks were delivered to the tympanic membrane of anesthetized alligator lizards, and electric responses were measured within the free-standing region of the cochlea using glass micropipettes. Responses were recorded intracellularly in supporting cells and extracellularly in the receptor organ and in the scalae. Gross responses were also recorded with wire electrodes in scala tympani. 2. Intra- and extracellular responses contain two components: (1) an early (with latent period less than 0.15 ms after the onset of the click), rate-independent component presumed to originate in the receptor cells, which we call the 'receptor component'; and (2) a later (with latent period from 2 to 5 ms after the onset of the click), rate-dependent component presumed to originate in the primary neurons, which we call the 'neural component'. 3. The receptor component consists of a positive, slow, polarity-independent potential which is superimposed on a small, oscillatory, polarity-dependent potential. The average magnitude of the receptor component in supporting cells (0.72 mV for -20 dB clicks) is about 10 times that in the extracellular spaces and about 1/5 of that recorded in receptor cells. This component depends nonlinearly on the sound stimulus in the -20 to -55 dB range of click levels. 4. The average magnitude of the neural component in supporting cells (0.3 mV for clicks at -20 dB and 10 clicks/s) is about 5-10 times larger than that in the extracellular spaces. 5. The receptor and neural components have different distributions within the cochlea. The slow potential of the receptor component has positive polarity within the receptor organ and in scala tympani, and negative polarity in scala media. In contrast, the neural component has approximately the same biphasic (negative then positive) waveform in all extracellular compartments where it was detected. However, the neural component has a larger magnitude and an inverted (positive then negative) waveform in

  6. Complex dark-field contrast in grating-based x-ray phase contrast imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yi; Tang, Xiangyang

    2015-03-01

    Without assuming that the sub-pixel microstructures of an object to be imaged distribute in space randomly, we investigate the influence of the object's microstructures on grating-based x-ray phase contrast imaging. Our theoretical analysis and 3D computer simulation study based on the paraxial Fresnel-Kirchhoff theory show that the existing dark-field contrast can be generalized into a complex dark-field contrast in a way such that its imaginary part quantifies the effect of the object's sub-pixel microstructures on the phase of intensity oscillations. A method based on the phase-attenuation duality that holds for soft tissues to be imaged at high x-ray energies is proposed to retrieve the imaginary part of the complex dark-field contrast for imaging. In comparison to the existing dark-field contrast, the imaginary part of complex dark-field contrast exhibits significantly stronger selectivity on the shape of the object's sub-pixel microstructures. Thus the x-ray imaging corresponding to the imaginary part of complex dark-field contrast can provide additional and complementary information to that corresponding to the attenuation contrast, phase contrast and the existing dark-field contrast.

  7. Spatiotemporal laser speckle contrast analysis for blood flow imaging with maximized speckle contrast.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Jianjun; Li, Pengcheng; Luo, Weihua; Wang, Jia; Zhang, Hongyan; Luo, Qingming

    2010-01-01

    Laser speckle contrast imaging is a technique used for imaging blood flow without scanning. Though several studies have attempted to combine spatial and temporal statistics of laser speckle images for reducing image noise as well as preserving acceptable spatiotemporal resolution, the statistical accuracy of these spatiotemporal methods has not been thoroughly compared. Through numerical simulation and animal experiments, this study investigates the changes in the mean speckle contrast values and the relative noise of the speckle contrast images computed by these methods with various numbers of frames and spatial windows. The simulation results show that the maximum relative error of the mean speckle contrast computed by the spatiotemporal laser speckle contrast analysis (STLASCA) method, in which the speckle contrast images are computed by analyzing the 3-D spatiotemporal speckle image cube, is approximately 5%, while it is higher than 13% for other methods. Changes in the mean speckle contrast values and the relative noise computed by these methods for animal experiment data are consistent with the simulation results. Our results demonstrate that STLASCA achieves more accurate speckle contrast, and suggest that STLASCA most effectively utilizes the number of pixels, thus achieving maximized speckle contrast, and thereby maximizing the variation of the laser speckle contrast image.

  8. Spatiotemporal laser speckle contrast analysis for blood flow imaging with maximized speckle contrast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, Jianjun; Li, Pengcheng; Luo, Weihua; Wang, Jia; Zhang, Hongyan; Luo, Qingming

    2010-01-01

    Laser speckle contrast imaging is a technique used for imaging blood flow without scanning. Though several studies have attempted to combine spatial and temporal statistics of laser speckle images for reducing image noise as well as preserving acceptable spatiotemporal resolution, the statistical accuracy of these spatiotemporal methods has not been thoroughly compared. Through numerical simulation and animal experiments, this study investigates the changes in the mean speckle contrast values and the relative noise of the speckle contrast images computed by these methods with various numbers of frames and spatial windows. The simulation results show that the maximum relative error of the mean speckle contrast computed by the spatiotemporal laser speckle contrast analysis (STLASCA) method, in which the speckle contrast images are computed by analyzing the 3-D spatiotemporal speckle image cube, is approximately 5%, while it is higher than 13% for other methods. Changes in the mean speckle contrast values and the relative noise computed by these methods for animal experiment data are consistent with the simulation results. Our results demonstrate that STLASCA achieves more accurate speckle contrast, and suggest that STLASCA most effectively utilizes the number of pixels, thus achieving maximized speckle contrast, and thereby maximizing the variation of the laser speckle contrast image.

  9. Myocardial perfusion assessment with contrast echocardiography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desco, Manuel; Ledesma-Carbayo, Maria J.; Santos, Andres; Garcia-Fernandez, Miguel A.; Marcos-Alberca, Pedro; Malpica, Norberto; Antoranz, Jose C.; Garcia-Barreno, Pedro

    2001-05-01

    Assessment of intramyocardial perfusion by contrast echocardiography is a promising new technique that allows to obtain quantitative parameters for the assessment of ischemic disease. In this work, a new methodology and a software prototype developed for this task are presented. It has been validated with Coherent Contrast Imaging (CCI) images acquired with an Acuson Sequoia scanner. Contrast (Optison microbubbles) is injected continuously during the scan. 150 images are acquired using low mechanical index U/S pulses. A burst of high mechanical index pulses is used to destroy bubbles, thus allowing to detect the contrast wash-in. The stud is performed in two conditions: rest and pharmacologically induced stress. The software developed allows to visualized the study (cine) and to select several ROIs within the heart wall. The position of these ROIs along the cardiac cycle is automatically corrected on the basis of the gradient field, and they can also be manually corrected in case the automatic procedure fails. Time curves are analyzed according to a parametric model that incorporates both contrast inflow rate and cyclic variations. Preliminary clinical results on 80 patients have allowed us to identify normal and pathological patterns and to establish the correlation of quantitative parameters with the real diagnosis.

  10. Environmentally sensitive paramagnetic and diamagnetic contrast agents for nuclear magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Pacheco-Torres, Jesus; Calle, Daniel; Lizarbe, Blanca; Negri, Viviana; Ubide, Carmen; Fayos, Rosa; Larrubia, Pilar López; Ballesteros, Paloma; Cerdan, Sebastian

    2011-01-01

    Even though alterations in the microenvironmental properties of tissues underlie the development of the most prevalent and morbid pathologies, they are not directly observable in vivo by Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) or Spectroscopy (MRS) methods. This circumstance has lead to the development of a wide variety of exogenous paramagnetic and diamagnetic MRI and MRS probes able to inform non invasively on microenvironmental variables such as pH, pO(2), ion concentration o even temperature. This review covers the fundamentals of environmental contrast and the current arsenal of endogenous and exogenous MRI and MRS contrast enhancing agents available to visualize it. We begin describing the physicochemical background necessary to understand paramagnetic and diamagnetic contrast enhancement with a special reference to novel magnetization transfer and (13)C hyperpolarization strategies. We describe then the main macrocyclic structures used to support the environmentally sensitive paramagnetic sensors, including CEST and PARACEST pH sensitive probes, temperature probes and enzyme activity or gene expression activatable probes. Finally we address the most commonly used diamagnetic contrast agents including imidazolic derivatives to reveal extracellular pH and tissue pO(2) values by MRS. The potential applications of these agents in multimodal and molecular imaging approaches are discussed.

  11. Enzymatic degradation of monocrotophos by extracellular fungal OP hydrolases.

    PubMed

    Jain, Rachna; Garg, Veena

    2013-11-01

    The present study explores the potential of extracellular fungal organophosphate (OP) hydrolase for the degradation of monocrotophos. Extracellular OP hydrolases were isolated and purified from five different fungal isolates viz. Aspergillus niger (M1), Aspergillus flavus (M2), Penicillium aculeatum (M3), Fusarium pallidoroseum (M4), and Macrophomina sp. (M5) by AmSO4 precipitation, dialysis, and G-100 chromatography. M3 showed highest percentage yield of 68.81 followed by 55.41 % for M1. Each of the purified enzyme fraction constituted of two different subunits of 33- and 67-kDa molecular weight. Optimum enzyme fraction (150 μg ml(-1)) rapidly degraded monocrotophos within 120 h in phosphorus-free liquid culture medium (CZM) with K deg of 0.0368, 0.0138, 0.048, 0.016, 0.0138, and 0.048 day(-1) and half-life of 0.79, 2.11, 0.6, 1.8, and 2.11 days for M1, M2, M3, M4, and M5, respectively. The results were further confirmed by high performance thin layer chromatography and Fourier transform infrared which indicate the disappearance of monocrotophos by hydrolytic cleavage of vinyl phosphate bond. The overall order of enzymatic degradation was found to be P. aculeatum > A. niger > F. pallidoroseum > A. flavus = Macrophomina sp. Hence, the study concludes that extracellular OP hydrolases efficiently degraded monocrotophos and could be used as a potential candidate for the detoxification of this neurotoxin pesticide.

  12. Extracellular Proteins: Novel Key Components of Metal Resistance in Cyanobacteria?

    PubMed Central

    Giner-Lamia, Joaquín; Pereira, Sara B.; Bovea-Marco, Miquel; Futschik, Matthias E.; Tamagnini, Paula; Oliveira, Paulo

    2016-01-01

    Metals are essential for all living organisms and required for fundamental biochemical processes. However, when in excess, metals can turn into highly-toxic agents able to disrupt cell membranes, alter enzymatic activities, and damage DNA. Metal concentrations are therefore tightly controlled inside cells, particularly in cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria are ecologically relevant prokaryotes that perform oxygenic photosynthesis and can be found in many different marine and freshwater ecosystems, including environments contaminated with heavy metals. As their photosynthetic machinery imposes high demands for metals, homeostasis of these micronutrients has been widely studied in cyanobacteria. So far, most studies have focused on how cells are capable of controlling their internal metal pools, with a strong bias toward the analysis of intracellular processes. Ultrastructure, modulation of physiology, dynamic changes in transcription and protein levels have been studied, but what takes place in the extracellular environment when cells are exposed to an unbalanced metal availability remains largely unknown. The interest in studying the subset of proteins present in the extracellular space has only recently begun and the identification and functional analysis of the cyanobacterial exoproteomes are just emerging. Remarkably, metal-related proteins such as the copper-chaperone CopM or the iron-binding protein FutA2 have already been identified outside the cell. With this perspective, we aim to raise the awareness that metal-resistance mechanisms are not yet fully known and hope to motivate future studies assessing the role of extracellular proteins on bacterial metal homeostasis, with a special focus on cyanobacteria. PMID:27375598

  13. Extracellular DNA in Single- and Multiple-Species Unsaturated Biofilms

    PubMed Central

    Steinberger, R. E.; Holden, P. A.

    2005-01-01

    The extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) of bacterial biofilms form a hydrated barrier between cells and their external environment. Better characterization of EPS could be useful in understanding biofilm physiology. The EPS are chemically complex, changing with both bacterial strain and culture conditions. Previously, we reported that Pseudomonas aeruginosa unsaturated biofilm EPS contains large amounts of extracellular DNA (eDNA) (R. E. Steinberger, A. R. Allen, H. G. Hansma, and P. A. Holden, Microb. Ecol. 43:416-423, 2002). Here, we investigated the compositional similarity of eDNA to cellular DNA, the relative quantity of eDNA, and the terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (TRFLP) community profile of eDNA in multiple-species biofilms. By randomly amplified polymorphic DNA analysis, cellular DNA and eDNA appear identical for P. aeruginosa biofilms. Significantly more eDNA was produced in P. aeruginosa and Pseudomonas putida biofilms than in Rhodococcus erythropolis or Variovorax paradoxus biofilms. While the amount of eDNA in dual-species biofilms was of the same order of magnitude as that of of single-species biofilms, the amounts were not predictable from single-strain measurements. By the Shannon diversity index and principle components analysis of TRFLP profiles generated from 16S rRNA genes, eDNA of four-species biofilms differed significantly from either cellular or total DNA of the same biofilm. However, total DNA- and cellular DNA-based TRFLP analyses of this biofilm community yielded identical results. We conclude that extracellular DNA production in unsaturated biofilms is species dependent and that the phylogenetic information contained in this DNA pool is quantifiable and distinct from either total or cellular DNA. PMID:16151131

  14. Fibrillin assemblies: extracellular determinants of tissue formation and fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Olivieri, Jacopo; Smaldone, Silvia; Ramirez, Francesco

    2010-12-02

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) plays a key role in tissue formation, homeostasis and repair, mutations in ECM components have catastrophic consequences for organ function and therefore, for the fitness and survival of the organism. Collagen, fibrillin and elastin polymers represent the architectural scaffolds that impart specific mechanic properties to tissues and organs. Fibrillin assemblies (microfibrils) have the additional function of distributing, concentrating and modulating local transforming growth factor (TGF)-β and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signals that regulate a plethora of cellular activities, including ECM formation and remodeling. Fibrillins also contain binding sites for integrin receptors, which induce adaptive responses to changes in the extracellular microenvironment by reorganizing the cytoskeleton, controlling gene expression, and releasing and activating matrix-bound latent TGF-β complexes. Genetic evidence has indicated that fibrillin-1 and fibrillin-2 contribute differently to the organization and structural properties of non-collagenous architectural scaffolds, which in turn translate into discrete regulatory outcomes of locally released TGF-β and BMP signals. Additionally, the study of congenital dysfunctions of fibrillin-1 has yielded insights into the pathogenesis of acquired connective tissue disorders of the connective tissue, such as scleroderma. On the one hand, mutations that affect the structure or expression of fibrillin-1 perturb microfibril biogenesis, stimulate improper latent TGF-β activation, and give rise to the pleiotropic manifestations in Marfan syndrome (MFS). On the other hand, mutations located around the integrin-binding site of fibrillin-1 perturb cell matrix interactions, architectural matrix assembly and extracellular distribution of latent TGF-β complexes, and lead to the highly restricted fibrotic phenotype of Stiff Skin syndrome. Understanding the molecular similarities and differences between

  15. Plasma extracellular RNA profiles in healthy and cancer patients

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Tiezheng; Huang, Xiaoyi; Woodcock, Mark; Du, Meijun; Dittmar, Rachel; Wang, Yuan; Tsai, Susan; Kohli, Manish; Boardman, Lisa; Patel, Tushar; Wang, Liang

    2016-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles are selectively enriched in RNA that has potential as disease biomarkers. To systemically characterize circulating extracellular RNA (exRNA) profiles, we performed RNA sequencing analysis on plasma extracellular vesicles derived from 50 healthy individuals and 142 cancer patients. Of ~12.6 million raw reads for each individual, the number of mappable reads aligned to RNA references was ~5.4 million including miRNAs (~40.4%), piwiRNAs (~40.0%), pseudo-genes (~3.7%), lncRNAs (~2.4%), tRNAs (~2.1%), and mRNAs (~2.1%). By expression stability testing, we identified a set of miRNAs showing relatively consistent expression, which may serve as reference control for exRNA quantification. By performing multivariate analysis of covariance, we identified significant associations of these exRNAs with age, sex and different types of cancers. In particular, down-regulation of miR-125a-5p and miR-1343-3p showed an association with all cancer types tested (false discovery rate <0.05). We developed multivariate statistical models to predict cancer status with an area under the curve from 0.68 to 0.92 depending cancer type and staging. This is the largest RNA-seq study to date for profiling exRNA species, which has not only provided a baseline reference profile for circulating exRNA, but also revealed a set of RNA candidates for reference controls and disease biomarkers. PMID:26786760

  16. Extracellular NO signalling from a mechanically stimulated osteocyte.

    PubMed

    Vatsa, Aviral; Smit, Theo H; Klein-Nulend, Jenneke

    2007-01-01

    Bone remodelling is a dynamic process that requires the coordinated interaction of osteocytes, osteoblasts, and osteoclasts, collaborating in basic multicellular units (BMUs). Communication between these cells can be by extracellular soluble molecules as well as directly propagating intercellular signalling molecules. Key to the understanding of bone remodelling is osteocyte mechanosensing and chemical signalling to the surrounding cells, since osteocytes are believed to be the mechanosensors of bone, responding to mechanical stresses. Nitric oxide (NO) is an important parameter to study osteocyte activation following mechanical loading. It is a small short-lived molecule, which makes its real-time, quantitative monitoring difficult. However, recently we demonstrated that DAR-4M AM chromophore can be used for real-time quantitative monitoring of intracellular NO production in individual cells following mechanical loading. Here we studied if a single mechanically stimulated osteocyte communicates with, and thus activates its surrounding cells via extracellular soluble factors. We monitored quantitatively intracellular NO production in the stimulated osteocyte and in its surrounding osteocytes, which were not interconnected. Mechanical stimulation by microneedle of a single-MLO-Y4 osteocyte-like cell upregulated the average intracellular NO production by 94% in the stimulated cell, and by 31-150% in the surrounding osteocytes. In conclusion, a single osteocyte can disseminate a mechanical stimulus to its surrounding osteocytes via extracellular soluble signalling factors. This reinforces the putative mechanosensory role of osteocytes, and demonstrates a possible mechanism by which a single mechanically stimulated osteocyte can communicate with other cells in a BMU, which might help to better understand the intricacies of intercellular interactions in BMUs and thus bone remodelling.

  17. Extracellular DNA in single- and multiple-species unsaturated biofilms.

    PubMed

    Steinberger, R E; Holden, P A

    2005-09-01

    The extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) of bacterial biofilms form a hydrated barrier between cells and their external environment. Better characterization of EPS could be useful in understanding biofilm physiology. The EPS are chemically complex, changing with both bacterial strain and culture conditions. Previously, we reported that Pseudomonas aeruginosa unsaturated biofilm EPS contains large amounts of extracellular DNA (eDNA) (R. E. Steinberger, A. R. Allen, H. G. Hansma, and P. A. Holden, Microb. Ecol. 43:416-423, 2002). Here, we investigated the compositional similarity of eDNA to cellular DNA, the relative quantity of eDNA, and the terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (TRFLP) community profile of eDNA in multiple-species biofilms. By randomly amplified polymorphic DNA analysis, cellular DNA and eDNA appear identical for P. aeruginosa biofilms. Significantly more eDNA was produced in P. aeruginosa and Pseudomonas putida biofilms than in Rhodococcus erythropolis or Variovorax paradoxus biofilms. While the amount of eDNA in dual-species biofilms was of the same order of magnitude as that of of single-species biofilms, the amounts were not predictable from single-strain measurements. By the Shannon diversity index and principle components analysis of TRFLP profiles generated from 16S rRNA genes, eDNA of four-species biofilms differed significantly from either cellular or total DNA of the same biofilm. However, total DNA- and cellular DNA-based TRFLP analyses of this biofilm community yielded identical results. We conclude that extracellular DNA production in unsaturated biofilms is species dependent and that the phylogenetic information contained in this DNA pool is quantifiable and distinct from either total or cellular DNA.

  18. Contrast dispersion imaging for cancer localization.

    PubMed

    Mischi, Massimo; Wijkstra, Hessel

    2014-01-01

    Cancer growth is associated with angiogenic processes in many types of cancer. Several imaging strategies have therefore been developed that target angiogenesis as a marker for cancer localization. To this end, intravascular and extravascular tissue perfusion is typically assessed by dynamic contrast enhanced (DCE) ultrasound (US) and MRI. All the proposed strategies, however, overlook important changes in the microvascular architecture that result from angiogenic processes. To overcome these limitations, we have recently introduced a new imaging strategy that analyzes the intravascular dispersion kinetics of contrast agents spreading through the microvasculature. Contrast dispersion is mainly determined by microvascular multi-path trajectories, reflecting the underlying microvascular architecture. This paper reviews the results obtained for prostate cancer localization by US and MRI dispersion imaging, also presenting the latest new developments and future perspectives.

  19. Contrasting Sequence Groups by Emerging Sequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Kang; Zaïane, Osmar R.

    Group comparison per se is a fundamental task in many scientific endeavours but is also the basis of any classifier. Contrast sets and emerging patterns contrast between groups of categorical data. Comparing groups of sequence data is a relevant task in many applications. We define Emerging Sequences (ESs) as subsequences that are frequent in sequences of one group and less frequent in the sequences of another, and thus distinguishing or contrasting sequences of different classes. There are two challenges to distinguish sequence classes: the extraction of ESs is not trivially efficient and only exact matches of sequences are considered. In our work we address those problems by a suffix tree-based framework and a similar matching mechanism. We propose a classifier based on Emerging Sequences. Evaluating against two learning algorithms based on frequent subsequences and exact matching subsequences, the experiments on two datasets show that our model outperforms the baseline approaches by up to 20% in prediction accuracy.

  20. Contrast-Independent Biologically Inspired Motion Detection

    PubMed Central

    Babies, Birthe; Lindemann, Jens Peter; Egelhaaf, Martin; Möller, Ralf

    2011-01-01

    Optic flow, i.e., retinal image movement resulting from ego-motion, is a crucial source of information used for obstacle avoidance and course control in flying insects. Optic flow analysis may prove promising for mobile robotics although it is currently not among the standard techniques. Insects have developed a computationally cheap analysis mechanism for image motion. Detailed computational models, the so-called elementary motion detectors (EMDs), describe motion detection in insects. However, the technical application of EMDs is complicated by the strong effect of local pattern contrast on their motion response. Here we present augmented versions of an EMD, the (s)cc-EMDs, which normalise their responses for contrast and thereby reduce the sensitivity to contrast changes. Thus, velocity changes of moving natural images are reflected more reliably in the detector response. The (s)cc-EMDs can easily be implemented in hardware and software and can be a valuable novel visual motion sensor for mobile robots. PMID:22163800

  1. Reconstruction methods for phase-contrast tomography

    SciTech Connect

    Raven, C.

    1997-02-01

    Phase contrast imaging with coherent x-rays can be distinguished in outline imaging and holography, depending on the wavelength {lambda}, the object size d and the object-to-detector distance r. When r << d{sup 2}{lambda}, phase contrast occurs only in regions where the refractive index fastly changes, i.e. at interfaces and edges in the sample. With increasing object-to-detector distance we come in the area of holographic imaging. The image contrast outside the shadow region of the object is due to interference of the direct, undiffracted beam and a beam diffracted by the object, or, in terms of holography, the interference of a reference wave with the object wave. Both, outline imaging and holography, offer the possibility to obtain three dimensional information of the sample in conjunction with a tomographic technique. But the data treatment and the kind of information one can obtain from the reconstruction is different.

  2. Phase contrast portal imaging using synchrotron radiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Umetani, K.; Kondoh, T.

    2014-07-01

    Microbeam radiation therapy is an experimental form of radiation treatment with great potential to improve the treatment of many types of cancer. We applied a synchrotron radiation phase contrast technique to portal imaging to improve targeting accuracy for microbeam radiation therapy in experiments using small animals. An X-ray imaging detector was installed 6.0 m downstream from an object to produce a high-contrast edge enhancement effect in propagation-based phase contrast imaging. Images of a mouse head sample were obtained using therapeutic white synchrotron radiation with a mean beam energy of 130 keV. Compared to conventional portal images, remarkably clear images of bones surrounding the cerebrum were acquired in an air environment for positioning brain lesions with respect to the skull structure without confusion with overlapping surface structures.

  3. Phase contrast portal imaging using synchrotron radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Umetani, K.; Kondoh, T.

    2014-07-15

    Microbeam radiation therapy is an experimental form of radiation treatment with great potential to improve the treatment of many types of cancer. We applied a synchrotron radiation phase contrast technique to portal imaging to improve targeting accuracy for microbeam radiation therapy in experiments using small animals. An X-ray imaging detector was installed 6.0 m downstream from an object to produce a high-contrast edge enhancement effect in propagation-based phase contrast imaging. Images of a mouse head sample were obtained using therapeutic white synchrotron radiation with a mean beam energy of 130 keV. Compared to conventional portal images, remarkably clear images of bones surrounding the cerebrum were acquired in an air environment for positioning brain lesions with respect to the skull structure without confusion with overlapping surface structures.

  4. Grouping Factors and the Reverse Contrast Illusion.

    PubMed

    Economou, Elias; Zdravković, Sunčica; Gilchrist, Alan

    2015-12-01

    In simultaneous lightness contrast, two identical gray target squares lying on backgrounds of different intensities appear different in lightness. Traditionally, this illusion was explained by lateral inhibitory mechanisms operating retinotopically. More recently, spatial filtering models have been preferred. We report tests of an anchoring theory account in which the illusion is attributed to grouping rules used by the visual system to compute lightness. We parametrically varied the belongingness of two gray target bars to their respective backgrounds so that they either appeared to group with a set of bars flanking them, or they appeared to group with their respective backgrounds. In all variations, the retinal adjacency of the gray squares and their backgrounds was essentially unchanged. We report data from seven experiments showing that manipulation of the grouping rules governs the size and direction of the simultaneous lightness contrast illusion. These results support the idea that simultaneous lightness contrast is the product of anchoring within perceptual groups.

  5. Effects of extracellular matrix on the malignant phenotype.

    PubMed Central

    Luikart, S. D.

    1988-01-01

    Extracellular matrix molecules, including collagen, glycosaminoglycans (usually linked to a protein core as proteoglycan), elastin, and glycoproteins, influence the initiation and maintenance of differentiation of a variety of cell types. These molecules bind to the cell surface at specific sites and nonspecifically by electrostatic forces. Such interactions may alter the cell's response to growth and differentiation factors. After neoplastic transformation, most cells retain some dependence on these factors. This paper reviews the influence of matrix components on the phenotype of a variety of malignant cells and concludes that in vitro studies of malignant cell behavior require the utilization of an appropriate microenvironment. PMID:3284211

  6. Transfer of extracellular vesicles during immune cell-cell interactions

    PubMed Central

    Gutiérrez-Vázquez, Cristina; Villarroya-Beltri, Carolina; Mittelbrunn, María; Sánchez-Madrid, Francisco

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY The transfer of molecules between cells during cognate immune cell interactions has been reported, and recently a novel mechanism of transfer of proteins and genetic material such as small RNA between T cells and APCs has been described, involving exchange of extracellular vesicles (EVs) during the formation of the immunological synapse (IS). EVs – a term that encompasses exosomes and microvesicles – have been implicated in cell-cell communication during immune responses associated with tumors, pathogens, allergies and autoimmune diseases. This review focuses on EV transfer as a mechanism for the exchange of molecules during immune cell-cell interactions. PMID:23278745

  7. Extracellular Proteins Limit the Dispersal of BiogenicNanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Moreau, John W.; Weber, Peter K.; Martin, Michael C.; Gilbert,Benjamin; Hutcheon, Ian D.; Banfield, Jillian F.

    2007-04-27

    High spatial-resolution secondaryion microprobespectrometry, synchrotron radiation Fourier-transform infraredspectroscopy and polyacrylamide gel analysis demonstrate the intimateassociation of proteins with spheroidal aggregates of biogenic zincsulfide nanocrystals, an example of extracellular biomineralization.Experiments involving synthetic ZnS nanoparticles and representativeamino acids indicate a driving role for cysteine in rapid nanoparticleaggregation. These findings suggest that microbially-derivedextracellular proteins can limit dispersal of nanoparticulatemetal-bearing phases, such as the mineral products of bioremediation,that may otherwise be transported away from their source by subsurfacefluid flow.

  8. Structure and function of the skeletal muscle extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Gillies, Allison R; Lieber, Richard L

    2011-09-01

    The skeletal muscle extracellular matrix (ECM) plays an important role in muscle fiber force transmission, maintenance, and repair. In both injured and diseased states, ECM adapts dramatically, a property that has clinical manifestations and alters muscle function. Here we review the structure, composition, and mechanical properties of skeletal muscle ECM; describe the cells that contribute to the maintenance of the ECM; and, finally, overview changes that occur with pathology. New scanning electron micrographs of ECM structure are also presented with hypotheses about ECM structure–function relationships. Detailed structure–function relationships of the ECM have yet to be defined and, as a result, we propose areas for future study.

  9. Extracellular enzyme activity and biogeochemical cycling in restored prairies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lynch, L.; Hernandez, D.; Schade, J. D.

    2011-12-01

    Winter microbial activity in mid-latitude prairie ecosystems is thermally sensitive and significantly influenced by snow depth. Snow insulates the soil column facilitating microbial processing of complex organic substrates. Previous studies in forests and tundra ecosystems suggest patterns of substrate utilization and limitation are seasonal; above freezing, soil microbes access fresh litter inputs and sugar exudates from plant roots, while under frozen condition they recycle nutrients incorporated in microbial biomass. In order to liberate nutrients required for carbon degradation, soil microbes invest energy in the production of extracellular enzymes that cleave monomers from polymer bonds. The inverse relationship between relative enzyme abundance and substrate availability makes enzyme assays a useful proxy to assess changes in resources over time. Our objective in this study was to assess patterns in microbial biomass, nutrient availability, and extracellular enzyme activity in four snow exclosure sites over a seven-month period. Over the past three years, we have maintained a snow removal experiment on two restored prairies in central Minnesota. In each prairie, snow was continuously removed annually from two 4 x 4 m plots by shoveling after each snow event. Extractable C, N and P, and microbial C, N and P in soil samples were measured in samples collected from these snow removal plots, as well as in adjacent unmanipulated prairie control plots. Pools of C, N, and P were estimated using standard extraction protocols, and microbial pools were estimated using chloroform fumigation direct extraction (CFDE). We conducted fluorometric extracellular enzyme assays (EEA) to assess how the degradation potential of cellulose (cellobiohydrolase, CBH), protein (leucine aminopeptidase, LAP), and phosphate esters (phosphatase, PHOS) changed seasonally. Microbial C and N declined between October and June, while microbial P declined during the fall and winter, but increased

  10. Locally optimal extracellular stimulation for chaotic desynchronization of neural populations.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Dan; Moehlis, Jeff

    2014-10-01

    We use optimal control theory to design a methodology to find locally optimal stimuli for desynchronization of a model of neurons with extracellular stimulation. This methodology yields stimuli which lead to positive Lyapunov exponents, and hence desynchronizes a neural population. We analyze this methodology in the presence of interneuron coupling to make predictions about the strength of stimulation required to overcome synchronizing effects of coupling. This methodology suggests a powerful alternative to pulsatile stimuli for deep brain stimulation as it uses less energy than pulsatile stimuli, and could eliminate the time consuming tuning process.

  11. Effect of solar irradiation on extracellular enzymes of Aeromonas proteolytica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Foster, B. G.

    1973-01-01

    The bacterium Aeromonas proteolytica was selected for studying the effects of solar irradiation on extracellular enzymes because it produces an endopeptidase that is capable of degrading proteins and a hemolysin that is active in lysing human erythrocytes. Possible alterations in the rate of enzyme production in response to the test conditions are currently underway and are not available for this preliminary report. Completed viability studies are indicative that little difference exists among the survival curves derived for cells exposed to various components of ultraviolet irradiation in space.

  12. Potential Roles of Fungal Extracellular Vesicles during Infection

    PubMed Central

    Joffe, Luna S.; Nimrichter, Leonardo

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are produced by virtually all cell types. Within the past few years, work in this field has revealed more information about fungal EVs. Fungal EVs have been shown to carry proteins, lipids, pigments, polysaccharides, and RNA; these components are known virulence factors, a fact which supports the hypothesis that fungal EVs concentrate pathogenic determinants. Additionally, recent studies have demonstrated that fungal EVs stimulate the host immune system. In this review, putative roles of fungal EVs are discussed, including their potential as vaccination tools and their possible contribution to pathogenesis in invasive fungal diseases. PMID:27390779

  13. Potentials and capabilities of the Extracellular Vesicle (EV) Array.

    PubMed

    Jørgensen, Malene Møller; Bæk, Rikke; Varming, Kim

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) and exosomes are difficult to enrich or purify from biofluids, hence quantification and phenotyping of these are tedious and inaccurate. The multiplexed, highly sensitive and high-throughput platform of the EV Array presented by Jørgensen et al., (J Extracell Vesicles, 2013; 2: 10) has been refined regarding the capabilities of the method for characterization and molecular profiling of EV surface markers. Here, we present an extended microarray platform to detect and phenotype plasma-derived EVs (optimized for exosomes) for up to 60 antigens without any enrichment or purification prior to analysis.

  14. Imaging cardiac extracellular matrices: a blueprint for regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Jangwook P.; Squirrell, Jayne M.; Lyons, Gary E.; Eliceiri, Kevin W.; Ogle, Brenda M.

    2013-01-01

    Once damaged, cardiac tissue does not readily repair and is therefore a primary target of regenerative therapies. One regenerative approach is the development of scaffolds that functionally mimic the cardiac extracellular matrix (ECM) to deliver stem cells or cardiac precursor populations to the heart. Technological advances in micro/nanotechnology, stem cell biology, biomaterials and tissue decellularization have propelled this promising approach forward. Surprisingly, technological advances in optical imaging methods have not been fully utilized in the field of cardiac regeneration. Here, we describe and provide examples to demonstrate how advanced imaging techniques could revolutionize how ECM-mimicking cardiac tissues are informed and evaluated. PMID:22209562

  15. A fast and mild decellularization protocol for obtaining extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Mirzarafie, Ariana; Grainger, Rhian K; Thomas, Ben; Bains, William; Ustok, Fatma I; Lowe, Chris R

    2014-04-01

    Degradation of extracellular matrix (ECM) function with age is a major cause of loss of tissue function with age that we would wish to reverse. Tissue engineering to provide replacement tissue requires an ECM-mimicking scaffold for cell organization. The standard protocols for achieving this take 10 days and include steps that may change the protein structure of the ECM. Here we describe a much shorter protocol for decellularizing chicken muscle, skin, and tendon samples that achieves the same efficiency as the original protocol without protein cross-link interference. Our protocol can be completed in 72 hr.

  16. Structure and Function of the Skeletal Muscle Extracellular Matrix

    PubMed Central

    Gillies, Allison R.; Lieber, Richard L.

    2011-01-01

    The skeletal muscle extracellular matrix (ECM) plays an important role in muscle fiber force transmission, maintenance, and repair. In both injured and diseased states, ECM adapts dramatically, a property thathas clinical manifestations and alters muscle function. Here, we review the structure, composition, and mechanical properties of skeletal muscle ECM, describe the cells that contribute to the maintenance of the ECM and, finally, overview changes that occur with pathology. New scanning electron micrographs of ECM structure are also presented with hypotheses about ECM structure-function relationships. Detailed structure-function relationships of the ECM have yet to be defined and, as a result, we propose areas for future studies. PMID:21949456

  17. [Extracellular proteinases of filamentous fungi as potential markers of phytopathogenesis].

    PubMed

    Dunaevskiĭ, Ia E; Gruban', T N; Beliakova, G A; Belozerskiĭ, M A

    2006-01-01

    The presence of proteins in the culture liquid of filamentous fungi under study was found to induce the secretion of proteinases. The inhibitory analysis of the major extracellular proteinases of the saprotrophic fungus Trichoderma harzianum and the phytopathogenic fungus Alternaria alternata showed that they both belong to the group of serine proteinases. The substrate specificity of these proteinases and their sensitivity to inhibitors suggest that the enzyme of T. harzianum is a subtilisin-like proteinase and the enzyme of A. alternata is a trypsin-like proteinase. This difference between the proteinases may reflect the physiological difference between their producers (saprotroph and phytopathogen).

  18. Orion: a high contrast user facility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hillier, D. I.; Danson, C. N.; Duffield, S. J.; Egan, D. A.; Elsmere, S. P.; Girling, M. T.; Harvey, E. J.; Hopps, N. W.; Norman, M. J.; Parker, S. J. F.; Treadwell, P. T.; Winter, D. N.; Bett, T. H.

    2016-03-01

    The Orion facility consists of two synchronized laser systems: two CPA (Chirped Pulse Amplification) beamlines each deliver 500J to target in a 0.5ps pulse (1PW) at 1054nm; and ten long pulse beamlines each deliver 500J in 0.1-5ns temporally shaped pulse at 351nm. One of the CPA beamlines has the option to be frequency doubled at sub-aperture to produce 100J laser pulses with a nanosecond contrast of ∼ 1014. Further work is under way to enhance the contrast of both CPA beamlines in the first harmonic.

  19. Dual-energy contrast-enhanced mammography.

    PubMed

    Travieso Aja, M M; Rodríguez Rodríguez, M; Alayón Hernández, S; Vega Benítez, V; Luzardo, O P

    2014-01-01

    The degree of vascularization in breast lesions is related to their malignancy. For this reason, functional diagnostic imaging techniques have become important in recent years. Dual-energy contrast-enhanced mammography is a new, apparently promising technique in breast cancer that provides information about the degree of vascularization of the lesion in addition to the morphological information provided by conventional mammography. This article describes the state of the art for dual-energy contrast-enhanced mammography. Based on 15 months' clinical experience, we illustrate this review with clinical cases that allow us to discuss the advantages and limitations of this technique.

  20. The Potential of High-Contrast Coronagraphy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Serabyn, E.

    2008-01-01

    The direct detection of faint companions near much brighter stars requires the development of very high-contrast, small field-of-view detection techniques, and the past decade has seen remarkable conceptual and instrumental progress in this area. New coronagraphic techniques are being developed and deployed, as are extreme adaptive optics (ExAO) systems that will enable the advantageous exploitation of these new techniques. This paper provides a short overview of promising high contrast coronagraphic techniques, as well as recent examples of ExAO coronagraphy and transit measurements obtained with the ExAO-level "well-corrected subaperture" at Palomar.