Mice, Knockout: Strains of mice in which certain GENES of their GENOMES have been disrupted, or "knocked-out". To produce knockouts, using RECOMBINANT DNA technology, the normal DNA sequence of the gene being studied is altered to prevent synthesis of a normal gene product. Cloned cells in which this DNA alteration is successful are then injected into mouse EMBRYOS to produce chimeric mice. The chimeric mice are then bred to yield a strain in which all the cells of the mouse contain the disrupted gene. Knockout mice are used as EXPERIMENTAL ANIMAL MODELS for diseases (DISEASE MODELS, ANIMAL) and to clarify the functions of the genes.Gene Knockout Techniques: Techniques to alter a gene sequence that result in an inactivated gene, or one in which the expression can be inactivated at a chosen time during development to study the loss of function of a gene.Mice, Inbred C57BLGene Deletion: A genetic rearrangement through loss of segments of DNA or RNA, bringing sequences which are normally separated into close proximity. This deletion may be detected using cytogenetic techniques and can also be inferred from the phenotype, indicating a deletion at one specific locus.Disease Models, Animal: Naturally occurring or experimentally induced animal diseases with pathological processes sufficiently similar to those of human diseases. They are used as study models for human diseases.Gene Targeting: The integration of exogenous DNA into the genome of an organism at sites where its expression can be suitably controlled. This integration occurs as a result of homologous recombination.Mice, Transgenic: Laboratory mice that have been produced from a genetically manipulated EGG or EMBRYO, MAMMALIAN.Phenotype: The outward appearance of the individual. It is the product of interactions between genes, and between the GENOTYPE and the environment.Mice, 129 Strain: Strains of mice arising from a parental inbred stock that was subsequently used to produce substrains of knockout and other mutant mice with targeted mutations.Signal Transduction: The intracellular transfer of information (biological activation/inhibition) through a signal pathway. In each signal transduction system, an activation/inhibition signal from a biologically active molecule (hormone, neurotransmitter) is mediated via the coupling of a receptor/enzyme to a second messenger system or to an ion channel. Signal transduction plays an important role in activating cellular functions, cell differentiation, and cell proliferation. Examples of signal transduction systems are the GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID-postsynaptic receptor-calcium ion channel system, the receptor-mediated T-cell activation pathway, and the receptor-mediated activation of phospholipases. Those coupled to membrane depolarization or intracellular release of calcium include the receptor-mediated activation of cytotoxic functions in granulocytes and the synaptic potentiation of protein kinase activation. Some signal transduction pathways may be part of larger signal transduction pathways; for example, protein kinase activation is part of the platelet activation signal pathway.Cells, Cultured: Cells propagated in vitro in special media conducive to their growth. Cultured cells are used to study developmental, morphologic, metabolic, physiologic, and genetic processes, among others.Gene Expression Regulation: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control (induction or repression) of gene action at the level of transcription or translation.RNA, Messenger: RNA sequences that serve as templates for protein synthesis. Bacterial mRNAs are generally primary transcripts in that they do not require post-transcriptional processing. Eukaryotic mRNA is synthesized in the nucleus and must be exported to the cytoplasm for translation. Most eukaryotic mRNAs have a sequence of polyadenylic acid at the 3' end, referred to as the poly(A) tail. The function of this tail is not known for certain, but it may play a role in the export of mature mRNA from the nucleus as well as in helping stabilize some mRNA molecules by retarding their degradation in the cytoplasm.Mutation: Any detectable and heritable change in the genetic material that causes a change in the GENOTYPE and which is transmitted to daughter cells and to succeeding generations.Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction: A variation of the PCR technique in which cDNA is made from RNA via reverse transcription. The resultant cDNA is then amplified using standard PCR protocols.Behavior, Animal: The observable response an animal makes to any situation.Liver: A large lobed glandular organ in the abdomen of vertebrates that is responsible for detoxification, metabolism, synthesis and storage of various substances.Blotting, Western: Identification of proteins or peptides that have been electrophoretically separated by blot transferring from the electrophoresis gel to strips of nitrocellulose paper, followed by labeling with antibody probes.Immunohistochemistry: Histochemical localization of immunoreactive substances using labeled antibodies as reagents.Neurons: The basic cellular units of nervous tissue. Each neuron consists of a body, an axon, and dendrites. Their purpose is to receive, conduct, and transmit impulses in the NERVOUS SYSTEM.Homozygote: An individual in which both alleles at a given locus are identical.Apolipoproteins E: A class of protein components which can be found in several lipoproteins including HIGH-DENSITY LIPOPROTEINS; VERY-LOW-DENSITY LIPOPROTEINS; and CHYLOMICRONS. Synthesized in most organs, Apo E is important in the global transport of lipids and cholesterol throughout the body. Apo E is also a ligand for LDL receptors (RECEPTORS, LDL) that mediates the binding, internalization, and catabolism of lipoprotein particles in cells. There are several allelic isoforms (such as E2, E3, and E4). Deficiency or defects in Apo E are causes of HYPERLIPOPROTEINEMIA TYPE III.Embryo, Mammalian: The entity of a developing mammal (MAMMALS), generally from the cleavage of a ZYGOTE to the end of embryonic differentiation of basic structures. For the human embryo, this represents the first two months of intrauterine development preceding the stages of the FETUS.Brain: The part of CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM that is contained within the skull (CRANIUM). Arising from the NEURAL TUBE, the embryonic brain is comprised of three major parts including PROSENCEPHALON (the forebrain); MESENCEPHALON (the midbrain); and RHOMBENCEPHALON (the hindbrain). The developed brain consists of CEREBRUM; CEREBELLUM; and other structures in the BRAIN STEM.Nerve Tissue ProteinsHeterozygote: An individual having different alleles at one or more loci regarding a specific character.Integrases: Recombinases that insert exogenous DNA into the host genome. Examples include proteins encoded by the POL GENE of RETROVIRIDAE and also by temperate BACTERIOPHAGES, the best known being BACTERIOPHAGE LAMBDA.Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.Apoptosis: One of the mechanisms by which CELL DEATH occurs (compare with NECROSIS and AUTOPHAGOCYTOSIS). Apoptosis is the mechanism responsible for the physiological deletion of cells and appears to be intrinsically programmed. It is characterized by distinctive morphologic changes in the nucleus and cytoplasm, chromatin cleavage at regularly spaced sites, and the endonucleolytic cleavage of genomic DNA; (DNA FRAGMENTATION); at internucleosomal sites. This mode of cell death serves as a balance to mitosis in regulating the size of animal tissues and in mediating pathologic processes associated with tumor growth.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Membrane Proteins: Proteins which are found in membranes including cellular and intracellular membranes. They consist of two types, peripheral and integral proteins. They include most membrane-associated enzymes, antigenic proteins, transport proteins, and drug, hormone, and lectin receptors.Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control of gene action during the developmental stages of an organism.Motor Activity: The physical activity of a human or an animal as a behavioral phenomenon.Animals, Newborn: Refers to animals in the period of time just after birth.Gene Expression: The phenotypic manifestation of a gene or genes by the processes of GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION and GENETIC TRANSLATION.Homeostasis: The processes whereby the internal environment of an organism tends to remain balanced and stable.Cell Line: Established cell cultures that have the potential to propagate indefinitely.Crosses, Genetic: Deliberate breeding of two different individuals that results in offspring that carry part of the genetic material of each parent. The parent organisms must be genetically compatible and may be from different varieties or closely related species.Transcription Factors: Endogenous substances, usually proteins, which are effective in the initiation, stimulation, or termination of the genetic transcription process.Genotype: The genetic constitution of the individual, comprising the ALLELES present at each GENETIC LOCUS.Hippocampus: A curved elevation of GRAY MATTER extending the entire length of the floor of the TEMPORAL HORN of the LATERAL VENTRICLE (see also TEMPORAL LOBE). The hippocampus proper, subiculum, and DENTATE GYRUS constitute the hippocampal formation. Sometimes authors include the ENTORHINAL CORTEX in the hippocampal formation.Embryo Loss: Early pregnancy loss during the EMBRYO, MAMMALIAN stage of development. In the human, this period comprises the second through eighth week after fertilization.Cell Differentiation: Progressive restriction of the developmental potential and increasing specialization of function that leads to the formation of specialized cells, tissues, and organs.Models, Animal: Non-human animals, selected because of specific characteristics, for use in experimental research, teaching, or testing.Mice, Inbred BALB CCell Proliferation: All of the processes involved in increasing CELL NUMBER including CELL DIVISION.Base Sequence: The sequence of PURINES and PYRIMIDINES in nucleic acids and polynucleotides. It is also called nucleotide sequence.Up-Regulation: A positive regulatory effect on physiological processes at the molecular, cellular, or systemic level. At the molecular level, the major regulatory sites include membrane receptors, genes (GENE EXPRESSION REGULATION), mRNAs (RNA, MESSENGER), and proteins.Carrier Proteins: Transport proteins that carry specific substances in the blood or across cell membranes.DNA Primers: Short sequences (generally about 10 base pairs) of DNA that are complementary to sequences of messenger RNA and allow reverse transcriptases to start copying the adjacent sequences of mRNA. Primers are used extensively in genetic and molecular biology techniques.Organ Specificity: Characteristic restricted to a particular organ of the body, such as a cell type, metabolic response or expression of a particular protein or antigen.Maze Learning: Learning the correct route through a maze to obtain reinforcement. It is used for human or animal populations. (Thesaurus of Psychological Index Terms, 6th ed)Mice, Inbred Strains: Genetically identical individuals developed from brother and sister matings which have been carried out for twenty or more generations, or by parent x offspring matings carried out with certain restrictions. All animals within an inbred strain trace back to a common ancestor in the twentieth generation.Fibroblasts: Connective tissue cells which secrete an extracellular matrix rich in collagen and other macromolecules.DNA-Binding Proteins: Proteins which bind to DNA. The family includes proteins which bind to both double- and single-stranded DNA and also includes specific DNA binding proteins in serum which can be used as markers for malignant diseases.Models, Biological: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of biological processes or diseases. For disease models in living animals, DISEASE MODELS, ANIMAL is available. Biological models include the use of mathematical equations, computers, and other electronic equipment.Kidney: Body organ that filters blood for the secretion of URINE and that regulates ion concentrations.Inflammation: A pathological process characterized by injury or destruction of tissues caused by a variety of cytologic and chemical reactions. It is usually manifested by typical signs of pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function.Macrophages: The relatively long-lived phagocytic cell of mammalian tissues that are derived from blood MONOCYTES. Main types are PERITONEAL MACROPHAGES; ALVEOLAR MACROPHAGES; HISTIOCYTES; KUPFFER CELLS of the liver; and OSTEOCLASTS. They may further differentiate within chronic inflammatory lesions to EPITHELIOID CELLS or may fuse to form FOREIGN BODY GIANT CELLS or LANGHANS GIANT CELLS. (from The Dictionary of Cell Biology, Lackie and Dow, 3rd ed.)Dose-Response Relationship, Drug: The relationship between the dose of an administered drug and the response of the organism to the drug.Receptor, Adenosine A2A: A subclass of adenosine A2 receptors found in LEUKOCYTES, the SPLEEN, the THYMUS and a variety of other tissues. It is generally considered to be a receptor for ADENOSINE that couples to the GS, STIMULATORY G-PROTEIN.Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II: A CALCIUM-independent subtype of nitric oxide synthase that may play a role in immune function. It is an inducible enzyme whose expression is transcriptionally regulated by a variety of CYTOKINES.Oxidative Stress: A disturbance in the prooxidant-antioxidant balance in favor of the former, leading to potential damage. Indicators of oxidative stress include damaged DNA bases, protein oxidation products, and lipid peroxidation products (Sies, Oxidative Stress, 1991, pxv-xvi).Myocardium: The muscle tissue of the HEART. It is composed of striated, involuntary muscle cells (MYOCYTES, CARDIAC) connected to form the contractile pump to generate blood flow.Gene Expression Profiling: The determination of the pattern of genes expressed at the level of GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION, under specific circumstances or in a specific cell.Phosphorylation: The introduction of a phosphoryl group into a compound through the formation of an ester bond between the compound and a phosphorus moiety.Lung: Either of the pair of organs occupying the cavity of the thorax that effect the aeration of the blood.Cytokines: Non-antibody proteins secreted by inflammatory leukocytes and some non-leukocytic cells, that act as intercellular mediators. They differ from classical hormones in that they are produced by a number of tissue or cell types rather than by specialized glands. They generally act locally in a paracrine or autocrine rather than endocrine manner.Atherosclerosis: A thickening and loss of elasticity of the walls of ARTERIES that occurs with formation of ATHEROSCLEROTIC PLAQUES within the ARTERIAL INTIMA.Exploratory Behavior: The tendency to explore or investigate a novel environment. It is considered a motivation not clearly distinguishable from curiosity.Gene Knock-In Techniques: Techniques used to add in exogenous gene sequence such as mutated genes; REPORTER GENES, to study mechanisms of gene expression; or regulatory control sequences, to study effects of temporal changes to GENE EXPRESSION.Body Weight: The mass or quantity of heaviness of an individual. It is expressed by units of pounds or kilograms.Analysis of Variance: A statistical technique that isolates and assesses the contributions of categorical independent variables to variation in the mean of a continuous dependent variable.Muscle, Skeletal: A subtype of striated muscle, attached by TENDONS to the SKELETON. Skeletal muscles are innervated and their movement can be consciously controlled. They are also called voluntary muscles.Arabidopsis: A plant genus of the family BRASSICACEAE that contains ARABIDOPSIS PROTEINS and MADS DOMAIN PROTEINS. The species A. thaliana is used for experiments in classical plant genetics as well as molecular genetic studies in plant physiology, biochemistry, and development.Amino Acid Sequence: The order of amino acids as they occur in a polypeptide chain. This is referred to as the primary structure of proteins. It is of fundamental importance in determining PROTEIN CONFORMATION.Protein Isoforms: Different forms of a protein that may be produced from different GENES, or from the same gene by ALTERNATIVE SPLICING.Membrane Glycoproteins: Glycoproteins found on the membrane or surface of cells.Gene Knockdown Techniques: The artificial induction of GENE SILENCING by the use of RNA INTERFERENCE to reduce the expression of a specific gene. It includes the use of DOUBLE-STRANDED RNA, such as SMALL INTERFERING RNA and RNA containing HAIRPIN LOOP SEQUENCE, and ANTI-SENSE OLIGONUCLEOTIDES.Mice, Mutant Strains: Mice bearing mutant genes which are phenotypically expressed in the animals.Receptor, Muscarinic M4: A specific subtype of muscarinic receptor found in the CORPUS STRIATUM and the LUNG. It has similar receptor binding specificities to MUSCARINIC RECEPTOR M1 and MUSCARINIC RECEPTOR M2.Aorta: The main trunk of the systemic arteries.Myocytes, Cardiac: Striated muscle cells found in the heart. They are derived from cardiac myoblasts (MYOBLASTS, CARDIAC).Interferon-gamma: The major interferon produced by mitogenically or antigenically stimulated LYMPHOCYTES. It is structurally different from TYPE I INTERFERON and its major activity is immunoregulation. It has been implicated in the expression of CLASS II HISTOCOMPATIBILITY ANTIGENS in cells that do not normally produce them, leading to AUTOIMMUNE DISEASES.Spleen: An encapsulated lymphatic organ through which venous blood filters.Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control of gene action in enzyme synthesis.Arabidopsis Proteins: Proteins that originate from plants species belonging to the genus ARABIDOPSIS. The most intensely studied species of Arabidopsis, Arabidopsis thaliana, is commonly used in laboratory experiments.Receptor, Serotonin, 5-HT1B: A serotonin receptor subtype found at high levels in the BASAL GANGLIA and the frontal cortex. It plays a role as a terminal autoreceptor that regulates the rate of SEROTONIN release from nerve endings. This serotonin receptor subtype is closely related to and has similar drug binding properties as the 5-HT1D RECEPTOR. It is particularly sensitive to the agonist SUMATRIPTAN and may be involved in mediating the drug's antimigraine effect.Down-Regulation: A negative regulatory effect on physiological processes at the molecular, cellular, or systemic level. At the molecular level, the major regulatory sites include membrane receptors, genes (GENE EXPRESSION REGULATION), mRNAs (RNA, MESSENGER), and proteins.Cell Movement: The movement of cells from one location to another. Distinguish from CYTOKINESIS which is the process of dividing the CYTOPLASM of a cell.Genes, Essential: Those genes found in an organism which are necessary for its viability and normal function.Neuropeptides: Peptides released by NEURONS as intercellular messengers. Many neuropeptides are also hormones released by non-neuronal cells.Receptors, LDL: Receptors on the plasma membrane of nonhepatic cells that specifically bind LDL. The receptors are localized in specialized regions called coated pits. Hypercholesteremia is caused by an allelic genetic defect of three types: 1, receptors do not bind to LDL; 2, there is reduced binding of LDL; and 3, there is normal binding but no internalization of LDL. In consequence, entry of cholesterol esters into the cell is impaired and the intracellular feedback by cholesterol on 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl CoA reductase is lacking.P-Glycoproteins: A subfamily of transmembrane proteins from the superfamily of ATP-BINDING CASSETTE TRANSPORTERS that are closely related in sequence to P-GLYCOPROTEIN. When overexpressed, they function as ATP-dependent efflux pumps able to extrude lipophilic drugs, especially ANTINEOPLASTIC AGENTS, from cells causing multidrug resistance (DRUG RESISTANCE, MULTIPLE). Although P-Glycoproteins share functional similarities to MULTIDRUG RESISTANCE-ASSOCIATED PROTEINS they are two distinct subclasses of ATP-BINDING CASSETTE TRANSPORTERS, and have little sequence homology.Protein Binding: The process in which substances, either endogenous or exogenous, bind to proteins, peptides, enzymes, protein precursors, or allied compounds. Specific protein-binding measures are often used as assays in diagnostic assessments.Mutagenesis, Insertional: Mutagenesis where the mutation is caused by the introduction of foreign DNA sequences into a gene or extragenic sequence. This may occur spontaneously in vivo or be experimentally induced in vivo or in vitro. Proviral DNA insertions into or adjacent to a cellular proto-oncogene can interrupt GENETIC TRANSLATION of the coding sequences or interfere with recognition of regulatory elements and cause unregulated expression of the proto-oncogene resulting in tumor formation.Transgenes: Genes that are introduced into an organism using GENE TRANSFER TECHNIQUES.Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha: Serum glycoprotein produced by activated MACROPHAGES and other mammalian MONONUCLEAR LEUKOCYTES. It has necrotizing activity against tumor cell lines and increases ability to reject tumor transplants. Also known as TNF-alpha, it is only 30% homologous to TNF-beta (LYMPHOTOXIN), but they share TNF RECEPTORS.Glucose: A primary source of energy for living organisms. It is naturally occurring and is found in fruits and other parts of plants in its free state. It is used therapeutically in fluid and nutrient replacement.Fragile X Mental Retardation Protein: A RNA-binding protein that is found predominately in the CYTOPLASM. It helps regulate GENETIC TRANSLATION in NEURONS and is absent or under-expressed in FRAGILE X SYNDROME.Synapses: Specialized junctions at which a neuron communicates with a target cell. At classical synapses, a neuron's presynaptic terminal releases a chemical transmitter stored in synaptic vesicles which diffuses across a narrow synaptic cleft and activates receptors on the postsynaptic membrane of the target cell. The target may be a dendrite, cell body, or axon of another neuron, or a specialized region of a muscle or secretory cell. Neurons may also communicate via direct electrical coupling with ELECTRICAL SYNAPSES. Several other non-synaptic chemical or electric signal transmitting processes occur via extracellular mediated interactions.Nitric Oxide Synthase Type III: A CALCIUM-dependent, constitutively-expressed form of nitric oxide synthase found primarily in ENDOTHELIAL CELLS.Promoter Regions, Genetic: DNA sequences which are recognized (directly or indirectly) and bound by a DNA-dependent RNA polymerase during the initiation of transcription. Highly conserved sequences within the promoter include the Pribnow box in bacteria and the TATA BOX in eukaryotes.Insulin: A 51-amino acid pancreatic hormone that plays a major role in the regulation of glucose metabolism, directly by suppressing endogenous glucose production (GLYCOGENOLYSIS; GLUCONEOGENESIS) and indirectly by suppressing GLUCAGON secretion and LIPOLYSIS. Native insulin is a globular protein comprised of a zinc-coordinated hexamer. Each insulin monomer containing two chains, A (21 residues) and B (30 residues), linked by two disulfide bonds. Insulin is used as a drug to control insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (DIABETES MELLITUS, TYPE 1).Genetic Engineering: Directed modification of the gene complement of a living organism by such techniques as altering the DNA, substituting genetic material by means of a virus, transplanting whole nuclei, transplanting cell hybrids, etc.Hepatocytes: The main structural component of the LIVER. They are specialized EPITHELIAL CELLS that are organized into interconnected plates called lobules.Gene Silencing: Interruption or suppression of the expression of a gene at transcriptional or translational levels.Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled: The largest family of cell surface receptors involved in SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION. They share a common structure and signal through HETEROTRIMERIC G-PROTEINS.Receptor, Adenosine A1: A subtype of ADENOSINE RECEPTOR that is found expressed in a variety of tissues including the BRAIN and DORSAL HORN NEURONS. The receptor is generally considered to be coupled to the GI, INHIBITORY G-PROTEIN which causes down regulation of CYCLIC AMP.Synaptic Transmission: The communication from a NEURON to a target (neuron, muscle, or secretory cell) across a SYNAPSE. In chemical synaptic transmission, the presynaptic neuron releases a NEUROTRANSMITTER that diffuses across the synaptic cleft and binds to specific synaptic receptors, activating them. The activated receptors modulate specific ion channels and/or second-messenger systems in the postsynaptic cell. In electrical synaptic transmission, electrical signals are communicated as an ionic current flow across ELECTRICAL SYNAPSES.Membrane Transport Proteins: Membrane proteins whose primary function is to facilitate the transport of molecules across a biological membrane. Included in this broad category are proteins involved in active transport (BIOLOGICAL TRANSPORT, ACTIVE), facilitated transport and ION CHANNELS.Nitric Oxide Synthase Type I: A CALCIUM-dependent, constitutively-expressed form of nitric oxide synthase found primarily in NERVE TISSUE.Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases: A group of enzymes that catalyzes the phosphorylation of serine or threonine residues in proteins, with ATP or other nucleotides as phosphate donors.Genes, Lethal: Genes whose loss of function or gain of function MUTATION leads to the death of the carrier prior to maturity. They may be essential genes (GENES, ESSENTIAL) required for viability, or genes which cause a block of function of an essential gene at a time when the essential gene function is required for viability.Tissue Distribution: Accumulation of a drug or chemical substance in various organs (including those not relevant to its pharmacologic or therapeutic action). This distribution depends on the blood flow or perfusion rate of the organ, the ability of the drug to penetrate organ membranes, tissue specificity, protein binding. The distribution is usually expressed as tissue to plasma ratios.Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins: Proteins and peptides that are involved in SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION within the cell. Included here are peptides and proteins that regulate the activity of TRANSCRIPTION FACTORS and cellular processes in response to signals from CELL SURFACE RECEPTORS. Intracellular signaling peptide and proteins may be part of an enzymatic signaling cascade or act through binding to and modifying the action of other signaling factors.Protein Transport: The process of moving proteins from one cellular compartment (including extracellular) to another by various sorting and transport mechanisms such as gated transport, protein translocation, and vesicular transport.Organ Size: The measurement of an organ in volume, mass, or heaviness.Trans-Activators: Diffusible gene products that act on homologous or heterologous molecules of viral or cellular DNA to regulate the expression of proteins.Calcium: A basic element found in nearly all organized tissues. It is a member of the alkaline earth family of metals with the atomic symbol Ca, atomic number 20, and atomic weight 40. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and combines with phosphorus to form calcium phosphate in the bones and teeth. It is essential for the normal functioning of nerves and muscles and plays a role in blood coagulation (as factor IV) and in many enzymatic processes.ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters: A family of MEMBRANE TRANSPORT PROTEINS that require ATP hydrolysis for the transport of substrates across membranes. The protein family derives its name from the ATP-binding domain found on the protein.In Situ Hybridization: A technique that localizes specific nucleic acid sequences within intact chromosomes, eukaryotic cells, or bacterial cells through the use of specific nucleic acid-labeled probes.Nitric Oxide: A free radical gas produced endogenously by a variety of mammalian cells, synthesized from ARGININE by NITRIC OXIDE SYNTHASE. Nitric oxide is one of the ENDOTHELIUM-DEPENDENT RELAXING FACTORS released by the vascular endothelium and mediates VASODILATION. It also inhibits platelet aggregation, induces disaggregation of aggregated platelets, and inhibits platelet adhesion to the vascular endothelium. Nitric oxide activates cytosolic GUANYLATE CYCLASE and thus elevates intracellular levels of CYCLIC GMP.Prosencephalon: The anterior of the three primitive cerebral vesicles of the embryonic brain arising from the NEURAL TUBE. It subdivides to form DIENCEPHALON and TELENCEPHALON. (Stedmans Medical Dictionary, 27th ed)Macrophages, Peritoneal: Mononuclear phagocytes derived from bone marrow precursors but resident in the peritoneum.Enzyme Inhibitors: Compounds or agents that combine with an enzyme in such a manner as to prevent the normal substrate-enzyme combination and the catalytic reaction.Alleles: Variant forms of the same gene, occupying the same locus on homologous CHROMOSOMES, and governing the variants in production of the same gene product.Cell Count: The number of CELLS of a specific kind, usually measured per unit volume or area of sample.Fertility: The capacity to conceive or to induce conception. It may refer to either the male or female.Testis: The male gonad containing two functional parts: the SEMINIFEROUS TUBULES for the production and transport of male germ cells (SPERMATOGENESIS) and the interstitial compartment containing LEYDIG CELLS that produce ANDROGENS.Receptor, Muscarinic M2: A specific subtype of muscarinic receptor found in the lower BRAIN, the HEART and in SMOOTH MUSCLE-containing organs. Although present in smooth muscle the M2 muscarinic receptor appears not to be involved in contractile responses.Transfection: The uptake of naked or purified DNA by CELLS, usually meaning the process as it occurs in eukaryotic cells. It is analogous to bacterial transformation (TRANSFORMATION, BACTERIAL) and both are routinely employed in GENE TRANSFER TECHNIQUES.Aging: The gradual irreversible changes in structure and function of an organism that occur as a result of the passage of time.Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis: Hybridization of a nucleic acid sample to a very large set of OLIGONUCLEOTIDE PROBES, which have been attached individually in columns and rows to a solid support, to determine a BASE SEQUENCE, or to detect variations in a gene sequence, GENE EXPRESSION, or for GENE MAPPING.Aquaporins: A class of porins that allow the passage of WATER and other small molecules across CELL MEMBRANES.Genetic Complementation Test: A test used to determine whether or not complementation (compensation in the form of dominance) will occur in a cell with a given mutant phenotype when another mutant genome, encoding the same mutant phenotype, is introduced into that cell.Nuclear Proteins: Proteins found in the nucleus of a cell. Do not confuse with NUCLEOPROTEINS which are proteins conjugated with nucleic acids, that are not necessarily present in the nucleus.Microscopy, Electron, Transmission: Electron microscopy in which the ELECTRONS or their reaction products that pass down through the specimen are imaged below the plane of the specimen.RNA, Small Interfering: Small double-stranded, non-protein coding RNAs (21-31 nucleotides) involved in GENE SILENCING functions, especially RNA INTERFERENCE (RNAi). Endogenously, siRNAs are generated from dsRNAs (RNA, DOUBLE-STRANDED) by the same ribonuclease, Dicer, that generates miRNAs (MICRORNAS). The perfect match of the siRNAs' antisense strand to their target RNAs mediates RNAi by siRNA-guided RNA cleavage. siRNAs fall into different classes including trans-acting siRNA (tasiRNA), repeat-associated RNA (rasiRNA), small-scan RNA (scnRNA), and Piwi protein-interacting RNA (piRNA) and have different specific gene silencing functions.Lipid Metabolism: Physiological processes in biosynthesis (anabolism) and degradation (catabolism) of LIPIDS.Fragile X Syndrome: A condition characterized genotypically by mutation of the distal end of the long arm of the X chromosome (at gene loci FRAXA or FRAXE) and phenotypically by cognitive impairment, hyperactivity, SEIZURES, language delay, and enlargement of the ears, head, and testes. INTELLECTUAL DISABILITY occurs in nearly all males and roughly 50% of females with the full mutation of FRAXA. (From Menkes, Textbook of Child Neurology, 5th ed, p226)Cell Survival: The span of viability of a cell characterized by the capacity to perform certain functions such as metabolism, growth, reproduction, some form of responsiveness, and adaptability.Polymerase Chain Reaction: In vitro method for producing large amounts of specific DNA or RNA fragments of defined length and sequence from small amounts of short oligonucleotide flanking sequences (primers). The essential steps include thermal denaturation of the double-stranded target molecules, annealing of the primers to their complementary sequences, and extension of the annealed primers by enzymatic synthesis with DNA polymerase. The reaction is efficient, specific, and extremely sensitive. Uses for the reaction include disease diagnosis, detection of difficult-to-isolate pathogens, mutation analysis, genetic testing, DNA sequencing, and analyzing evolutionary relationships.In Situ Nick-End Labeling: An in situ method for detecting areas of DNA which are nicked during APOPTOSIS. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase is used to add labeled dUTP, in a template-independent manner, to the 3 prime OH ends of either single- or double-stranded DNA. The terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase nick end labeling, or TUNEL, assay labels apoptosis on a single-cell level, making it more sensitive than agarose gel electrophoresis for analysis of DNA FRAGMENTATION.Long-Term Potentiation: A persistent increase in synaptic efficacy, usually induced by appropriate activation of the same synapses. The phenomenological properties of long-term potentiation suggest that it may be a cellular mechanism of learning and memory.Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction: Methods used for detecting the amplified DNA products from the polymerase chain reaction as they accumulate instead of at the end of the reaction.Genetic Vectors: DNA molecules capable of autonomous replication within a host cell and into which other DNA sequences can be inserted and thus amplified. Many are derived from PLASMIDS; BACTERIOPHAGES; or VIRUSES. They are used for transporting foreign genes into recipient cells. Genetic vectors possess a functional replicator site and contain GENETIC MARKERS to facilitate their selective recognition.Retina: The ten-layered nervous tissue membrane of the eye. It is continuous with the OPTIC NERVE and receives images of external objects and transmits visual impulses to the brain. Its outer surface is in contact with the CHOROID and the inner surface with the VITREOUS BODY. The outer-most layer is pigmented, whereas the inner nine layers are transparent.Nitric Oxide Synthase: An NADPH-dependent enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of L-ARGININE and OXYGEN to produce CITRULLINE and NITRIC OXIDE.Transcription, Genetic: The biosynthesis of RNA carried out on a template of DNA. The biosynthesis of DNA from an RNA template is called REVERSE TRANSCRIPTION.Lipopolysaccharides: Lipid-containing polysaccharides which are endotoxins and important group-specific antigens. They are often derived from the cell wall of gram-negative bacteria and induce immunoglobulin secretion. The lipopolysaccharide molecule consists of three parts: LIPID A, core polysaccharide, and O-specific chains (O ANTIGENS). When derived from Escherichia coli, lipopolysaccharides serve as polyclonal B-cell mitogens commonly used in laboratory immunology. (From Dorland, 28th ed)Isoenzymes: Structurally related forms of an enzyme. Each isoenzyme has the same mechanism and classification, but differs in its chemical, physical, or immunological characteristics.Homeodomain Proteins: Proteins encoded by homeobox genes (GENES, HOMEOBOX) that exhibit structural similarity to certain prokaryotic and eukaryotic DNA-binding proteins. Homeodomain proteins are involved in the control of gene expression during morphogenesis and development (GENE EXPRESSION REGULATION, DEVELOPMENTAL).Disease Susceptibility: A constitution or condition of the body which makes the tissues react in special ways to certain extrinsic stimuli and thus tends to make the individual more than usually susceptible to certain diseases.Serotonin Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins: Sodium chloride-dependent neurotransmitter symporters located primarily on the PLASMA MEMBRANE of serotonergic neurons. They are different than SEROTONIN RECEPTORS, which signal cellular responses to SEROTONIN. They remove SEROTONIN from the EXTRACELLULAR SPACE by high affinity reuptake into PRESYNAPTIC TERMINALS. Regulates signal amplitude and duration at serotonergic synapses and is the site of action of the SEROTONIN UPTAKE INHIBITORS.Proteins: Linear POLYPEPTIDES that are synthesized on RIBOSOMES and may be further modified, crosslinked, cleaved, or assembled into complex proteins with several subunits. The specific sequence of AMINO ACIDS determines the shape the polypeptide will take, during PROTEIN FOLDING, and the function of the protein.Reactive Oxygen Species: Molecules or ions formed by the incomplete one-electron reduction of oxygen. These reactive oxygen intermediates include SINGLET OXYGEN; SUPEROXIDES; PEROXIDES; HYDROXYL RADICAL; and HYPOCHLOROUS ACID. They contribute to the microbicidal activity of PHAGOCYTES, regulation of signal transduction and gene expression, and the oxidative damage to NUCLEIC ACIDS; PROTEINS; and LIPIDS.Protein Subunits: Single chains of amino acids that are the units of multimeric PROTEINS. Multimeric proteins can be composed of identical or non-identical subunits. One or more monomeric subunits may compose a protomer which itself is a subunit structure of a larger assembly.Mitochondrial Proteins: Proteins encoded by the mitochondrial genome or proteins encoded by the nuclear genome that are imported to and resident in the MITOCHONDRIA.Patch-Clamp Techniques: An electrophysiologic technique for studying cells, cell membranes, and occasionally isolated organelles. All patch-clamp methods rely on a very high-resistance seal between a micropipette and a membrane; the seal is usually attained by gentle suction. The four most common variants include on-cell patch, inside-out patch, outside-out patch, and whole-cell clamp. Patch-clamp methods are commonly used to voltage clamp, that is control the voltage across the membrane and measure current flow, but current-clamp methods, in which the current is controlled and the voltage is measured, are also used.Enzyme Activation: Conversion of an inactive form of an enzyme to one possessing metabolic activity. It includes 1, activation by ions (activators); 2, activation by cofactors (coenzymes); and 3, conversion of an enzyme precursor (proenzyme or zymogen) to an active enzyme.Kidney Concentrating Ability: The ability of the kidney to excrete in the urine high concentrations of solutes from the blood plasma.Stem Cells: Relatively undifferentiated cells that retain the ability to divide and proliferate throughout postnatal life to provide progenitor cells that can differentiate into specialized cells.HEK293 Cells: A cell line generated from human embryonic kidney cells that were transformed with human adenovirus type 5.Green Fluorescent Proteins: Protein analogs and derivatives of the Aequorea victoria green fluorescent protein that emit light (FLUORESCENCE) when excited with ULTRAVIOLET RAYS. They are used in REPORTER GENES in doing GENETIC TECHNIQUES. Numerous mutants have been made to emit other colors or be sensitive to pH.Cholesterol: The principal sterol of all higher animals, distributed in body tissues, especially the brain and spinal cord, and in animal fats and oils.Cell Death: The termination of the cell's ability to carry out vital functions such as metabolism, growth, reproduction, responsiveness, and adaptability.Estrogen Receptor beta: One of the ESTROGEN RECEPTORS that has greater affinity for ISOFLAVONES than ESTROGEN RECEPTOR ALPHA does. There is great sequence homology with ER alpha in the DNA-binding domain but not in the ligand binding and hinge domains.PhosphoproteinsDopamine: One of the catecholamine NEUROTRANSMITTERS in the brain. It is derived from TYROSINE and is the precursor to NOREPINEPHRINE and EPINEPHRINE. Dopamine is a major transmitter in the extrapyramidal system of the brain, and important in regulating movement. A family of receptors (RECEPTORS, DOPAMINE) mediate its action.Fear: The affective response to an actual current external danger which subsides with the elimination of the threatening condition.Bacterial Proteins: Proteins found in any species of bacterium.Embryonic Development: Morphological and physiological development of EMBRYOS.RNA Interference: A gene silencing phenomenon whereby specific dsRNAs (RNA, DOUBLE-STRANDED) trigger the degradation of homologous mRNA (RNA, MESSENGER). The specific dsRNAs are processed into SMALL INTERFERING RNA (siRNA) which serves as a guide for cleavage of the homologous mRNA in the RNA-INDUCED SILENCING COMPLEX. DNA METHYLATION may also be triggered during this process.Mitochondria: Semiautonomous, self-reproducing organelles that occur in the cytoplasm of all cells of most, but not all, eukaryotes. Each mitochondrion is surrounded by a double limiting membrane. The inner membrane is highly invaginated, and its projections are called cristae. Mitochondria are the sites of the reactions of oxidative phosphorylation, which result in the formation of ATP. They contain distinctive RIBOSOMES, transfer RNAs (RNA, TRANSFER); AMINO ACYL T RNA SYNTHETASES; and elongation and termination factors. Mitochondria depend upon genes within the nucleus of the cells in which they reside for many essential messenger RNAs (RNA, MESSENGER). Mitochondria are believed to have arisen from aerobic bacteria that established a symbiotic relationship with primitive protoeukaryotes. (King & Stansfield, A Dictionary of Genetics, 4th ed)Endothelial Cells: Highly specialized EPITHELIAL CELLS that line the HEART; BLOOD VESSELS; and lymph vessels, forming the ENDOTHELIUM. They are polygonal in shape and joined together by TIGHT JUNCTIONS. The tight junctions allow for variable permeability to specific macromolecules that are transported across the endothelial layer.Conditioning (Psychology): A general term referring to the learning of some particular response.TRPV Cation Channels: A subgroup of TRP cation channels named after vanilloid receptor. They are very sensitive to TEMPERATURE and hot spicy food and CAPSAICIN. They have the TRP domain and ANKYRIN repeats. Selectivity for CALCIUM over SODIUM ranges from 3 to 100 fold.Connexins: A group of homologous proteins which form the intermembrane channels of GAP JUNCTIONS. The connexins are the products of an identified gene family which has both highly conserved and highly divergent regions. The variety contributes to the wide range of functional properties of gap junctions.Spermatogenesis: The process of germ cell development in the male from the primordial germ cells, through SPERMATOGONIA; SPERMATOCYTES; SPERMATIDS; to the mature haploid SPERMATOZOA.Electroretinography: Recording of electric potentials in the retina after stimulation by light.Recombinant Proteins: Proteins prepared by recombinant DNA technology.Cerebral Cortex: The thin layer of GRAY MATTER on the surface of the CEREBRAL HEMISPHERES that develops from the TELENCEPHALON and folds into gyri and sulchi. It reaches its highest development in humans and is responsible for intellectual faculties and higher mental functions.Heart: The hollow, muscular organ that maintains the circulation of the blood.Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing: A broad category of carrier proteins that play a role in SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION. They generally contain several modular domains, each of which having its own binding activity, and act by forming complexes with other intracellular-signaling molecules. Signal-transducing adaptor proteins lack enzyme activity, however their activity can be modulated by other signal-transducing enzymesDiet, High-Fat: Consumption of excessive DIETARY FATS.Interleukin-6: A cytokine that stimulates the growth and differentiation of B-LYMPHOCYTES and is also a growth factor for HYBRIDOMAS and plasmacytomas. It is produced by many different cells including T-LYMPHOCYTES; MONOCYTES; and FIBROBLASTS.Immunoblotting: Immunologic method used for detecting or quantifying immunoreactive substances. The substance is identified by first immobilizing it by blotting onto a membrane and then tagging it with labeled antibodies.Dopamine Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins: Sodium chloride-dependent neurotransmitter symporters located primarily on the PLASMA MEMBRANE of dopaminergic neurons. They remove DOPAMINE from the EXTRACELLULAR SPACE by high affinity reuptake into PRESYNAPTIC TERMINALS and are the target of DOPAMINE UPTAKE INHIBITORS.Epithelial Cells: Cells that line the inner and outer surfaces of the body by forming cellular layers (EPITHELIUM) or masses. Epithelial cells lining the SKIN; the MOUTH; the NOSE; and the ANAL CANAL derive from ectoderm; those lining the RESPIRATORY SYSTEM and the DIGESTIVE SYSTEM derive from endoderm; others (CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM and LYMPHATIC SYSTEM) derive from mesoderm. Epithelial cells can be classified mainly by cell shape and function into squamous, glandular and transitional epithelial cells.Fibrosis: Any pathological condition where fibrous connective tissue invades any organ, usually as a consequence of inflammation or other injury.Flow Cytometry: Technique using an instrument system for making, processing, and displaying one or more measurements on individual cells obtained from a cell suspension. Cells are usually stained with one or more fluorescent dyes specific to cell components of interest, e.g., DNA, and fluorescence of each cell is measured as it rapidly transverses the excitation beam (laser or mercury arc lamp). Fluorescence provides a quantitative measure of various biochemical and biophysical properties of the cell, as well as a basis for cell sorting. Other measurable optical parameters include light absorption and light scattering, the latter being applicable to the measurement of cell size, shape, density, granularity, and stain uptake.Animals, Genetically Modified: ANIMALS whose GENOME has been altered by GENETIC ENGINEERING, or their offspring.Receptors, Opioid, mu: A class of opioid receptors recognized by its pharmacological profile. Mu opioid receptors bind, in decreasing order of affinity, endorphins, dynorphins, met-enkephalin, and leu-enkephalin. They have also been shown to be molecular receptors for morphine.Rotarod Performance Test: A performance test based on forced MOTOR ACTIVITY on a rotating rod, usually by a rodent. Parameters include the riding time (seconds) or endurance. Test is used to evaluate balance and coordination of the subjects, particular in experimental animal models for neurological disorders and drug effects.Neuronal Plasticity: The capacity of the NERVOUS SYSTEM to change its reactivity as the result of successive activations.Interleukin-10: A cytokine produced by a variety of cell types, including T-LYMPHOCYTES; MONOCYTES; DENDRITIC CELLS; and EPITHELIAL CELLS that exerts a variety of effects on immunoregulation and INFLAMMATION. Interleukin-10 combines with itself to form a homodimeric molecule that is the biologically active form of the protein.Gene Expression Regulation, Plant: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control of gene action in plants.Receptors, Dopamine D2: A subfamily of G-PROTEIN-COUPLED RECEPTORS that bind the neurotransmitter DOPAMINE and modulate its effects. D2-class receptor genes contain INTRONS, and the receptors inhibit ADENYLYL CYCLASES.Stress, Physiological: The unfavorable effect of environmental factors (stressors) on the physiological functions of an organism. Prolonged unresolved physiological stress can affect HOMEOSTASIS of the organism, and may lead to damaging or pathological conditions.Immunoprecipitation: The aggregation of soluble ANTIGENS with ANTIBODIES, alone or with antibody binding factors such as ANTI-ANTIBODIES or STAPHYLOCOCCAL PROTEIN A, into complexes large enough to fall out of solution.