Tight Junctions: Cell-cell junctions that seal adjacent epithelial cells together, preventing the passage of most dissolved molecules from one side of the epithelial sheet to the other. (Alberts et al., Molecular Biology of the Cell, 2nd ed, p22)Occludin: A MARVEL domain protein that plays an important role in the formation and regulation of the TIGHT JUNCTION paracellular permeability barrier.Tight Junction Proteins: Proteins that take part in the formation or structure of TIGHT JUNCTIONS.Zonula Occludens-1 Protein: A 195-kDa zonula occludens protein that is distinguished by the presence of a ZU5 domain at the C-terminal of the molecule.Intercellular Junctions: Direct contact of a cell with a neighboring cell. Most such junctions are too small to be resolved by light microscopy, but they can be visualized by conventional or freeze-fracture electron microscopy, both of which show that the interacting CELL MEMBRANE and often the underlying CYTOPLASM and the intervening EXTRACELLULAR SPACE are highly specialized in these regions. (From Alberts et al., Molecular Biology of the Cell, 2d ed, p792)Claudins: A large family of transmembrane proteins found in TIGHT JUNCTIONS. They take part in the formation of paracellular barriers and pores that regulate paracellular permeability.Claudin-1: An integral membrane protein that is localized to TIGHT JUNCTIONS, where it plays a role in controlling the paracellular permeability of polarized cells. Mutations in the gene for claudin-1 are associated with Neonatal Ichthyosis-Sclerosing Cholangitis (NISCH) Syndrome.Gap Junctions: Connections between cells which allow passage of small molecules and electric current. Gap junctions were first described anatomically as regions of close apposition between cells with a narrow (1-2 nm) gap between cell membranes. The variety in the properties of gap junctions is reflected in the number of CONNEXINS, the family of proteins which form the junctions.Adherens Junctions: Anchoring points where the CYTOSKELETON of neighboring cells are connected to each other. They are composed of specialized areas of the plasma membrane where bundles of the ACTIN CYTOSKELETON attach to the membrane through the transmembrane linkers, CADHERINS, which in turn attach through their extracellular domains to cadherins in the neighboring cell membranes. In sheets of cells, they form into adhesion belts (zonula adherens) that go all the way around a cell.Zonula Occludens-2 Protein: A zonula occludens protein subtype found in epithelial cell junctions. Several isoforms of zonula occludens-2 protein exist due to use of alternative promoter regions and alternative mRNA splicings.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.Claudin-3: A ubiquitously-expressed claudin subtype that acts as a general barrier-forming protein in TIGHT JUNCTIONS. Elevated expression of claudin-3 is found in a variety of tumor cell types, suggesting its role as a therapeutic target for specific ANTINEOPLASTIC AGENTS.Claudin-4: A claudin subtype that takes part in maintaining the barrier-forming property of TIGHT JUNCTIONS. Claudin-4 is found associated with CLAUDIN-8 in the KIDNEY COLLECTING DUCT where it may play a role in paracellular chloride ion reabsorption.Claudin-5: A claudin subtype that is found localized to TIGHT JUNCTIONS in VASCULAR ENDOTHELIAL CELLS. The protein was initially identified as one of several proteins which are deleted in VELOCARDIOFACIAL SYNDROME and may play an important role in maintaining the integrity of the BLOOD-BRAIN BARRIER.Freeze Fracturing: Preparation for electron microscopy of minute replicas of exposed surfaces of the cell which have been ruptured in the frozen state. The specimen is frozen, then cleaved under high vacuum at the same temperature. The exposed surface is shadowed with carbon and platinum and coated with carbon to obtain a carbon replica.Electric Impedance: The resistance to the flow of either alternating or direct electrical current.Neuromuscular Junction: The synapse between a neuron and a muscle.Permeability: Property of membranes and other structures to permit passage of light, heat, gases, liquids, metabolites, and mineral ions.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.Junctional Adhesion Molecules: A family of membrane glycoproteins localized to TIGHT JUNCTIONS that contain two extracellular Ig-like domains, a single transmembrane segment, and a cytoplasmic tail of variable length.MARVEL Domain Containing 2 Protein: A tight junction-associated MARVEL protein that may play a role in separating the endolymphatic and perilymphatic spaces of the ORGAN OF CORTI. Defects in the gene that codes for MARVELD2 protein are a cause of deafness autosomal recessive type 49.Cell Membrane Permeability: A quality of cell membranes which permits the passage of solvents and solutes into and out of cells.PhosphoproteinsCaco-2 Cells: Human colonic ADENOCARCINOMA cells that are able to express differentiation features characteristic of mature intestinal cells, such as ENTEROCYTES. These cells are valuable in vitro tools for studies related to intestinal cell function and differentiation.Zonula Occludens Proteins: A family of proteins that play a role in TIGHT JUNCTION formation by binding to and anchoring proteins to the ACTIN CYTOSKELETON.Dogs: The domestic dog, Canis familiaris, comprising about 400 breeds, of the carnivore family CANIDAE. They are worldwide in distribution and live in association with people. (Walker's Mammals of the World, 5th ed, p1065)Epithelium: One or more layers of EPITHELIAL CELLS, supported by the basal lamina, which covers the inner or outer surfaces of the body.Cadherins: Calcium-dependent cell adhesion proteins. They are important in the formation of ADHERENS JUNCTIONS between cells. Cadherins are classified by their distinct immunological and tissue specificities, either by letters (E- for epithelial, N- for neural, and P- for placental cadherins) or by numbers (cadherin-12 or N-cadherin 2 for brain-cadherin). Cadherins promote cell adhesion via a homophilic mechanism as in the construction of tissues and of the whole animal body.Cell Polarity: Orientation of intracellular structures especially with respect to the apical and basolateral domains of the plasma membrane. Polarized cells must direct proteins from the Golgi apparatus to the appropriate domain since tight junctions prevent proteins from diffusing between the two domains.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.Blood-Brain Barrier: Specialized non-fenestrated tightly-joined ENDOTHELIAL CELLS with TIGHT JUNCTIONS that form a transport barrier for certain substances between the cerebral capillaries and the BRAIN tissue.Blood-Testis Barrier: A specialized barrier, in the TESTIS, between the interstitial BLOOD compartment and the adluminal compartment of the SEMINIFEROUS TUBULES. The barrier is formed by layers of cells from the VASCULAR ENDOTHELIUM of the capillary BLOOD VESSELS, to the SEMINIFEROUS EPITHELIUM of the seminiferous tubules. TIGHT JUNCTIONS form between adjacent SERTOLI CELLS, as well as between the ENDOTHELIAL CELLS.Microscopy, Electron: Microscopy using an electron beam, instead of light, to visualize the sample, thereby allowing much greater magnification. The interactions of ELECTRONS with specimens are used to provide information about the fine structure of that specimen. In TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY the reactions of the electrons that are transmitted through the specimen are imaged. In SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY an electron beam falls at a non-normal angle on the specimen and the image is derived from the reactions occurring above the plane of the specimen.Connexin 43: A 43-kDa peptide which is a member of the connexin family of gap junction proteins. Connexin 43 is a product of a gene in the alpha class of connexin genes (the alpha-1 gene). It was first isolated from mammalian heart, but is widespread in the body including the brain.Claudin-2: A claudin subtype that is associated with the formation of cation-selective channels and increased epithelial permeability. It is localized to the TIGHT JUNCTIONS of the PROXIMAL KIDNEY TUBULE and INTESTINAL EPITHELIUM.Intestinal Mucosa: Lining of the INTESTINES, consisting of an inner EPITHELIUM, a middle LAMINA PROPRIA, and an outer MUSCULARIS MUCOSAE. In the SMALL INTESTINE, the mucosa is characterized by a series of folds and abundance of absorptive cells (ENTEROCYTES) with MICROVILLI.Cell Line: Established cell cultures that have the potential to propagate indefinitely.Cell Communication: Any of several ways in which living cells of an organism communicate with one another, whether by direct contact between cells or by means of chemical signals carried by neurotransmitter substances, hormones, and cyclic AMP.Mannitol: A diuretic and renal diagnostic aid related to sorbitol. It has little significant energy value as it is largely eliminated from the body before any metabolism can take place. It can be used to treat oliguria associated with kidney failure or other manifestations of inadequate renal function and has been used for determination of glomerular filtration rate. Mannitol is also commonly used as a research tool in cell biological studies, usually to control osmolarity.Esophagogastric Junction: The area covering the terminal portion of ESOPHAGUS and the beginning of STOMACH at the cardiac orifice.Blood-Retinal Barrier: A specialized transport barrier, in the EYE, formed by the retinal pigment EPITHELIUM, and the ENDOTHELIUM of the BLOOD VESSELS of the RETINA. TIGHT JUNCTIONS joining adjacent cells keep the barrier between cells continuous.Cell Adhesion Molecules: Surface ligands, usually glycoproteins, that mediate cell-to-cell adhesion. Their functions include the assembly and interconnection of various vertebrate systems, as well as maintenance of tissue integration, wound healing, morphogenic movements, cellular migrations, and metastasis.Microscopy, Fluorescence: Microscopy of specimens stained with fluorescent dye (usually fluorescein isothiocyanate) or of naturally fluorescent materials, which emit light when exposed to ultraviolet or blue light. Immunofluorescence microscopy utilizes antibodies that are labeled with fluorescent dye.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.Sertoli Cells: Supporting cells projecting inward from the basement membrane of SEMINIFEROUS TUBULES. They surround and nourish the developing male germ cells and secrete ANDROGEN-BINDING PROTEIN and hormones such as ANTI-MULLERIAN HORMONE. The tight junctions of Sertoli cells with the SPERMATOGONIA and SPERMATOCYTES provide a BLOOD-TESTIS BARRIER.Microscopy, Confocal: A light microscopic technique in which only a small spot is illuminated and observed at a time. An image is constructed through point-by-point scanning of the field in this manner. Light sources may be conventional or laser, and fluorescence or transmitted observations are possible.Desmosomes: A type of junction that attaches one cell to its neighbor. One of a number of differentiated regions which occur, for example, where the cytoplasmic membranes of adjacent epithelial cells are closely apposed. It consists of a circular region of each membrane together with associated intracellular microfilaments and an intercellular material which may include, for example, mucopolysaccharides. (From Glick, Glossary of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 1990; Singleton & Sainsbury, Dictionary of Microbiology and Molecular Biology, 2d ed)Holliday Junction Resolvases: Enzymes that recognize CRUCIFORM DNA structures and introduce paired incisions that help to resolve the structure into two DNA helices.Actins: Filamentous proteins that are the main constituent of the thin filaments of muscle fibers. The filaments (known also as filamentous or F-actin) can be dissociated into their globular subunits; each subunit is composed of a single polypeptide 375 amino acids long. This is known as globular or G-actin. In conjunction with MYOSINS, actin is responsible for the contraction and relaxation of muscle.Inulin: A starch found in the tubers and roots of many plants. Since it is hydrolyzable to FRUCTOSE, it is classified as a fructosan. It has been used in physiologic investigation for determination of the rate of glomerular function.Fluorescent Antibody Technique: Test for tissue antigen using either a direct method, by conjugation of antibody with fluorescent dye (FLUORESCENT ANTIBODY TECHNIQUE, DIRECT) or an indirect method, by formation of antigen-antibody complex which is then labeled with fluorescein-conjugated anti-immunoglobulin antibody (FLUORESCENT ANTIBODY TECHNIQUE, INDIRECT). The tissue is then examined by fluorescence microscopy.Lanthanum: Lanthanum. The prototypical element in the rare earth family of metals. It has the atomic symbol La, atomic number 57, and atomic weight 138.91. Lanthanide ion is used in experimental biology as a calcium antagonist; lanthanum oxide improves the optical properties of glass.alpha Catenin: A catenin that binds F-ACTIN and links the CYTOSKELETON with BETA CATENIN and GAMMA CATENIN.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.Nucleoside-Phosphate Kinase: An enzyme that catalyzes reversible reactions of a nucleoside triphosphate, e.g., ATP, with a nucleoside monophosphate, e.g., UMP, to form ADP and UDP. Many nucleoside monophosphates can act as acceptor while many ribo- and deoxyribonucleoside triphosphates can act as donor. EC Adhesion: Adherence of cells to surfaces or to other cells.Madin Darby Canine Kidney Cells: An epithelial cell line derived from a kidney of a normal adult female dog.Capillary Permeability: The property of blood capillary ENDOTHELIUM that allows for the selective exchange of substances between the blood and surrounding tissues and through membranous barriers such as the BLOOD-AIR BARRIER; BLOOD-AQUEOUS BARRIER; BLOOD-BRAIN BARRIER; BLOOD-NERVE BARRIER; BLOOD-RETINAL BARRIER; and BLOOD-TESTIS BARRIER. Small lipid-soluble molecules such as carbon dioxide and oxygen move freely by diffusion. Water and water-soluble molecules cannot pass through the endothelial walls and are dependent on microscopic pores. These pores show narrow areas (TIGHT JUNCTIONS) which may limit large molecule movement.Cell Membrane: The lipid- and protein-containing, selectively permeable membrane that surrounds the cytoplasm in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.Cytoskeletal Proteins: Major constituent of the cytoskeleton found in the cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells. They form a flexible framework for the cell, provide attachment points for organelles and formed bodies, and make communication between parts of the cell possible.Desmoplakins: Desmoplakins are cytoskeletal linker proteins that anchor INTERMEDIATE FILAMENTS to the PLASMA MEMBRANE at DESMOSOMES.Immunohistochemistry: Histochemical localization of immunoreactive substances using labeled antibodies as reagents.Myosin-Light-Chain Kinase: An enzyme that phosphorylates myosin light chains in the presence of ATP to yield myosin-light chain phosphate and ADP, and requires calcium and CALMODULIN. The 20-kDa light chain is phosphorylated more rapidly than any other acceptor, but light chains from other myosins and myosin itself can act as acceptors. The enzyme plays a central role in the regulation of smooth muscle contraction.Cytoskeleton: The network of filaments, tubules, and interconnecting filamentous bridges which give shape, structure, and organization to the cytoplasm.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.Enterocytes: Absorptive cells in the lining of the INTESTINAL MUCOSA. They are differentiated EPITHELIAL CELLS with apical MICROVILLI facing the intestinal lumen. Enterocytes are more abundant in the SMALL INTESTINE than in the LARGE INTESTINE. Their microvilli greatly increase the luminal surface area of the cell by 14- to 40 fold.beta Catenin: A multi-functional catenin that participates in CELL ADHESION and nuclear signaling. Beta catenin binds CADHERINS and helps link their cytoplasmic tails to the ACTIN in the CYTOSKELETON via ALPHA CATENIN. It also serves as a transcriptional co-activator and downstream component of WNT PROTEIN-mediated SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION PATHWAYS.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.Seminiferous Epithelium: The epithelium lining the seminiferous tubules composed of primary male germ cells (SPERMATOGONIA) and supporting SERTOLI CELLS. As SPERMATOGENESIS proceeds, the developing germ cells migrate toward the lumen. The adluminal compartment, the inner two thirds of the tubules, contains SPERMATOCYTES and the more advanced germ cells.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.Intestines: The section of the alimentary canal from the STOMACH to the ANAL CANAL. It includes the LARGE INTESTINE and SMALL INTESTINE.Microscopy, Immunoelectron: Microscopy in which the samples are first stained immunocytochemically and then examined using an electron microscope. Immunoelectron microscopy is used extensively in diagnostic virology as part of very sensitive immunoassays.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.Kidney: Body organ that filters blood for the secretion of URINE and that regulates ion concentrations.Base Sequence: The sequence of PURINES and PYRIMIDINES in nucleic acids and polynucleotides. It is also called nucleotide sequence.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.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.Phosphorylation: The introduction of a phosphoryl group into a compound through the formation of an ester bond between the compound and a phosphorus moiety.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.DNA, Cruciform: A cross-shaped DNA structure that can be observed under the electron microscope. It is formed by the incomplete exchange of strands between two double-stranded helices or by complementary INVERTED REPEAT SEQUENCES that refold into hairpin loops on opposite strands across from each other.Catenins: A family of cytoskeletal proteins that play essential roles in CELL ADHESION at ADHERENS JUNCTIONS by linking CADHERINS to the ACTIN FILAMENTS of the CYTOSKELETON.Osmium Compounds: Inorganic compounds that contain osmium as an integral part of the molecule.Dextrans: A group of glucose polymers made by certain bacteria. Dextrans are used therapeutically as plasma volume expanders and anticoagulants. They are also commonly used in biological experimentation and in industry for a wide variety of purposes.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.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.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.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.Guanylate Kinase: Catalyzes the ATP-dependent PHOSPHORYLATION of GMP to generate GDP and ADP.Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect: A form of fluorescent antibody technique commonly used to detect serum antibodies and immune complexes in tissues and microorganisms in specimens from patients with infectious diseases. The technique involves formation of an antigen-antibody complex which is labeled with fluorescein-conjugated anti-immunoglobulin antibody. (From Bennington, Saunders Dictionary & Encyclopedia of Laboratory Medicine and Technology, 1984)Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.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.PDZ Domains: Protein interaction domains of about 70-90 amino acid residues, named after a common structure found in PSD-95, Discs Large, and Zona Occludens 1 proteins. PDZ domains are involved in the recruitment and interaction of proteins, and aid the formation of protein scaffolds and signaling networks. This is achieved by sequence-specific binding between a PDZ domain in one protein and a PDZ motif in another protein.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.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.Blood-Air Barrier: The barrier between capillary blood and alveolar air comprising the alveolar EPITHELIUM and capillary ENDOTHELIUM with their adherent BASEMENT MEMBRANE and EPITHELIAL CELL cytoplasm. PULMONARY GAS EXCHANGE occurs across this membrane.Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate: Fluorescent probe capable of being conjugated to tissue and proteins. It is used as a label in fluorescent antibody staining procedures as well as protein- and amino acid-binding techniques.Mice, Inbred C57BLBiological Transport: The movement of materials (including biochemical substances and drugs) through a biological system at the cellular level. The transport can be across cell membranes and epithelial layers. It also can occur within intracellular compartments and extracellular compartments.Ileum: The distal and narrowest portion of the SMALL INTESTINE, between the JEJUNUM and the ILEOCECAL VALVE of the LARGE INTESTINE.Colon: The segment of LARGE INTESTINE between the CECUM and the RECTUM. It includes the ASCENDING COLON; the TRANSVERSE COLON; the DESCENDING COLON; and the SIGMOID COLON.Endothelium, Vascular: Single pavement layer of cells which line the luminal surface of the entire vascular system and regulate the transport of macromolecules and blood components.Rats, Sprague-Dawley: A strain of albino rat used widely for experimental purposes because of its calmness and ease of handling. It was developed by the Sprague-Dawley Animal Company.Protein Structure, Tertiary: The level of protein structure in which combinations of secondary protein structures (alpha helices, beta sheets, loop regions, and motifs) pack together to form folded shapes called domains. Disulfide bridges between cysteines in two different parts of the polypeptide chain along with other interactions between the chains play a role in the formation and stabilization of tertiary structure. Small proteins usually consist of only one domain but larger proteins may contain a number of domains connected by segments of polypeptide chain which lack regular secondary structure.Microfilament Proteins: Monomeric subunits of primarily globular ACTIN and found in the cytoplasmic matrix of almost all cells. They are often associated with microtubules and may play a role in cytoskeletal function and/or mediate movement of the cell or the organelles within the cell.Protein Kinase C: An serine-threonine protein kinase that requires the presence of physiological concentrations of CALCIUM and membrane PHOSPHOLIPIDS. The additional presence of DIACYLGLYCEROLS markedly increases its sensitivity to both calcium and phospholipids. The sensitivity of the enzyme can also be increased by PHORBOL ESTERS and it is believed that protein kinase C is the receptor protein of tumor-promoting phorbol esters.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.Bacterial Translocation: The passage of viable bacteria from the GASTROINTESTINAL TRACT to extra-intestinal sites, such as the mesenteric lymph node complex, liver, spleen, kidney, and blood. Factors that promote bacterial translocation include overgrowth with gram-negative enteric bacilli, impaired host immune defenses, and injury to the INTESTINAL MUCOSA resulting in increased intestinal permeability. Bacterial translocation from the lung to the circulation is also possible and sometimes accompanies MECHANICAL VENTILATION.Endothelium: A layer of epithelium that lines the heart, blood vessels (ENDOTHELIUM, VASCULAR), lymph vessels (ENDOTHELIUM, LYMPHATIC), and the serous cavities of the body.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.Horseradish Peroxidase: An enzyme isolated from horseradish which is able to act as an antigen. It is frequently used as a histochemical tracer for light and electron microscopy. Its antigenicity has permitted its use as a combined antigen and marker in experimental immunology.Electrophysiology: The study of the generation and behavior of electrical charges in living organisms particularly the nervous system and the effects of electricity on living organisms.Diffusion Chambers, Culture: Devices used in a technique by which cells or tissues are grown in vitro or, by implantation, in vivo within chambers permeable to diffusion of solutes across the chamber walls. The chambers are used for studies of drug effects, osmotic responses, cytogenic and immunologic phenomena, metabolism, etc., and include tissue cages.Pigment Epithelium of Eye: The layer of pigment-containing epithelial cells in the RETINA; the CILIARY BODY; and the IRIS in the eye.Coxsackie and Adenovirus Receptor-Like Membrane Protein: An Ig superfamily transmembrane protein that localizes to junctional complexes that occur between ENDOTHELIAL CELLS and EPTHELIAL CELLS. The protein may play a role in cell-cell adhesion and is the primary site for the attachment of ADENOVIRUSES during infection.Nephrosis: Pathological processes of the KIDNEY without inflammatory or neoplastic components. Nephrosis may be a primary disorder or secondary complication of other diseases. It is characterized by the NEPHROTIC SYNDROME indicating the presence of PROTEINURIA and HYPOALBUMINEMIA with accompanying EDEMA.Neuromuscular Junction Diseases: Conditions characterized by impaired transmission of impulses at the NEUROMUSCULAR JUNCTION. This may result from disorders that affect receptor function, pre- or postsynaptic membrane function, or ACETYLCHOLINESTERASE activity. The majority of diseases in this category are associated with autoimmune, toxic, or inherited conditions.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.Epidermis: The external, nonvascular layer of the skin. It is made up, from within outward, of five layers of EPITHELIUM: (1) basal layer (stratum basale epidermidis); (2) spinous layer (stratum spinosum epidermidis); (3) granular layer (stratum granulosum epidermidis); (4) clear layer (stratum lucidum epidermidis); and (5) horny layer (stratum corneum epidermidis).