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(1/19664) Mrj encodes a DnaJ-related co-chaperone that is essential for murine placental development.

We have identified a novel gene in a gene trap screen that encodes a protein related to the DnaJ co-chaperone in E. coli. The gene, named Mrj (mammalian relative of DnaJ) was expressed throughout development in both the embryo and placenta. Within the placenta, expression was particularly high in trophoblast giant cells but moderate levels were also observed in trophoblast cells of the chorion at embryonic day 8.5, and later in the labyrinth which arises from the attachment of the chorion to the allantois (a process called chorioallantoic fusion). Insertion of the ROSAbetageo gene trap vector into the Mrj gene created a null allele. Homozygous Mrj mutants died at mid-gestation due to a failure of chorioallantoic fusion at embryonic day 8.5, which precluded formation of the mature placenta. At embryonic day 8.5, the chorion in mutants was morphologically normal and expressed the cell adhesion molecule beta4 integrin that is known to be required for chorioallantoic fusion. However, expression of the chorionic trophoblast-specific transcription factor genes Err2 and Gcm1 was significantly reduced. The mutants showed no abnormal phenotypes in other trophoblast cell types or in the embryo proper. This study indicates a previously unsuspected role for chaperone proteins in placental development and represents the first genetic analysis of DnaJ-related protein function in higher eukaryotes. Based on a survey of EST databases representing different mouse tissues and embryonic stages, there are 40 or more DnaJ-related genes in mammals. In addition to Mrj, at least two of these genes are also expressed in the developing mouse placenta. The specificity of the developmental defect in Mrj mutants suggests that each of these genes may have unique tissue and cellular activities.  (+info)

(2/19664) Interleukin-8 receptor modulates IgE production and B-cell expansion and trafficking in allergen-induced pulmonary inflammation.

We examined the role of the interleukin-8 (IL-8) receptor in a murine model of allergen-induced pulmonary inflammation using mice with a targeted deletion of the murine IL-8 receptor homologue (IL-8r-/-). Wild-type (Wt) and IL-8r-/- mice were systemically immunized to ovalbumin (OVA) and were exposed with either single or multiple challenge of aerosolized phosphate-buffered saline (OVA/PBS) or OVA (OVA/OVA). Analysis of cells recovered from bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) revealed a diminished recruitment of neutrophils to the airway lumen after single challenge in IL-8r-/- mice compared with Wt mice, whereas multiply challenged IL-8r-/- mice had increased B cells and fewer neutrophils compared with Wt mice. Both Wt and IL-8r-/- OVA/OVA mice recruited similar numbers of eosinophils to the BAL fluid and exhibited comparable degrees of pulmonary inflammation histologically. Both total and OVA-specific IgE levels were greater in multiply challenged IL-8r-/- OVA/OVA mice than in Wt mice. Both the IL-8r-/- OVA/OVA and OVA/PBS mice were significantly less responsive to methacholine than their respective Wt groups, but both Wt and IL-8r mice showed similar degrees of enhancement after multiple allergen challenge. The data demonstrate that the IL-8r modulates IgE production, airway responsiveness, and the composition of the cells (B cells and neutrophils) recruited to the airway lumen in response to antigen.  (+info)

(3/19664) Prevention of collagen-induced arthritis by gene delivery of soluble p75 tumour necrosis factor receptor.

Collagen type II-induced arthritis (CIA) in DBA/1 mice can be passively transferred to SCID mice with spleen B- and T-lymphocytes. In the present study, we show that infection ex vivo of splenocytes from arthritic DBA/1 mice with a retroviral vector, containing cDNA for the soluble form of human p75 receptor of tumour necrosis factor (TNF-R) before transfer, prevents the development of arthritis, bone erosion and joint inflammation in the SCID recipients. Assessment of IgG subclass levels and studies of synovial histology suggest that down-regulating the effector functions of T helper-type 1 (Th1) cells may, at least in part, explain the inhibition of arthritis in the SCID recipients. In contrast, the transfer of splenocytes infected with mouse TNF-alpha gene construct resulted in exacerbated arthritis and enhancement of IgG2a antibody levels. Intriguingly, infection of splenocytes from arthritic DBA/1 mice with a construct for mouse IL-10 had no modulating effect on the transfer of arthritis. The data suggest that manipulation of the immune system with cytokines, or cytokine inhibitors using gene transfer protocols can be an effective approach to ameliorate arthritis.  (+info)

(4/19664) Structure of CD94 reveals a novel C-type lectin fold: implications for the NK cell-associated CD94/NKG2 receptors.

The crystal structure of the extracellular domain of CD94, a component of the CD94/NKG2 NK cell receptor, has been determined to 2.6 A resolution, revealing a unique variation of the C-type lectin fold. In this variation, the second alpha helix, corresponding to residues 102-112, is replaced by a loop, the putative carbohydrate-binding site is significantly altered, and the Ca2+-binding site appears nonfunctional. This structure may serve as a prototype for other NK cell receptors such as Ly-49, NKR-P1, and CD69. The CD94 dimer observed in the crystal has an extensive hydrophobic interface that stabilizes the loop conformation of residues 102-112. The formation of this dimer reveals a putative ligand-binding region for HLA-E and suggests how NKG2 interacts with CD94.  (+info)

(5/19664) Exposure of human vascular endothelial cells to sustained hydrostatic pressure stimulates proliferation. Involvement of the alphaV integrins.

The present study investigated the effects of sustained hydrostatic pressure (SHP; up to 4 cm H2O) on human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) proliferation, focal adhesion plaque (FAP) organization, and integrin expression. Exposure of HUVECs to SHP stimulated cell proliferation and a selective increase in the expression of integrin subunit alphaV. The increase in alphaV was observed as early as 4 hours after exposure to pressure and preceded detectable increases in the bromodeoxyuridine labeling index. Laser confocal microscopy studies demonstrated colocalization of the alphaV integrin to FAPs. The individual FAPs in pressure-treated cells demonstrated a reduced area and increased aspect ratio and were localized to both peripheral and more central regions of the cells, in contrast to the predilection for the cell periphery in cells maintained under control pressure conditions. The pressure-induced changes in alphaV distribution had functional consequences on the cells: adhesivity of the cells to vitronectin was increased, and alphaV antagonists blocked the pressure-induced proliferative response. Thus, the present study suggests a role for alphaV integrins in the mechanotransduction of pressure by endothelial cells.  (+info)

(6/19664) Human granulocytic ehrlichiosis agent and Ehrlichia chaffeensis reside in different cytoplasmic compartments in HL-60 cells.

The human granulocytic ehrlichiosis (HGE) agent resides and multiplies exclusively in cytoplasmic vacuoles of granulocytes. Double immunofluorescence labeling was used to characterize the nature of the HGE agent replicative inclusions and to compare them with inclusions containing the human monocytic ehrlichia, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, in HL-60 cells. Although both Ehrlichia spp. can coinfect HL-60 cells, they resided in separate inclusions. Inclusions of both Ehrlichia spp. were not labeled with either anti-lysosome-associated membrane protein 1 or anti-CD63. Accumulation of myeloperoxidase-positive granules were seen around HGE agent inclusions but not around E. chaffeensis inclusions. 3-(2, 4-Dinitroanilino)-3'-amino-N-methyldipropylamine and acridine orange were not localized to either inclusion type. Vacuolar-type H+-ATPase was not colocalized with HGE agent inclusions but was weakly colocalized with E. chaffeensis inclusions. E. chaffeensis inclusions were labeled with the transferrin receptor, early endosomal antigen 1, and rab5, but HGE agent inclusions were not. Some HGE agent and E. chaffeensis inclusions colocalized with major histocompatibility complex class I and II antigens. These two inclusions were not labeled for annexins I, II, IV, and VI; alpha-adaptin; clathrin heavy chain; or beta-coatomer protein. Vesicle-associated membrane protein 2 colocalized to both inclusions. The cation-independent mannose 6-phosphate receptor was not colocalized with either inclusion type. Endogenously synthesized sphingomyelin, from C6-NBD-ceramide, was not incorporated into either inclusion type. Brefeldin A did not affect the growth of either Ehrlichia sp. in HL-60 cells. These results suggest that the HGE agent resides in inclusions which are neither early nor late endosomes and does not fuse with lysosomes or Golgi-derived vesicles, while E. chaffeensis resides in an early endosomal compartment which accumulates the transferrin receptor.  (+info)

(7/19664) Cell surface sialic acid and the regulation of immune cell interactions: the neuraminidase effect reconsidered.

It has been known for over a decade that sialidase (neuraminidase) treatment could substantially enhance the capacity of resting B cells to stimulate the proliferation of allogeneic and antigen specific, syngeneic T cells. Thus, cell-surface sialic acid was implicated as a potential modulator of immune cell interaction. However, little progress has been made in either identifying explicit roles for sialic acid in this system or in hypothesizing mechanisms to explain the "neuraminidase effect." Here we show for the first time that cell surface sialic acid on medium incubated B cells blocks access to costimulatory molecules on the B cell surface, and that this is the most likely explanation for the neuraminidase effect. Further, we show that it is likely to be upregulation of ICAM-1 and its subsequent engagement of LFA-1 rather than loss of cell surface sialic acid that in part regulates access to CD86 and other costimulatory molecules. However, we cannot exclude a role for CD86-bound sialic acid on the B cell in modulating binding to T cell CD28. Because sialidase treatment of resting B cells but not resting T cells enables T cell activation, we suggest that sialidase treatment may still be an analogue for an authentic step in B cell activation, and show that for highly activated B cells (activated with polyclonal anti-IgM plus INF-gamma) there is specific loss 2, 6-linked sialic acid. Potential roles for sialic acid in modulating B cell/T cell collaboration are discussed.  (+info)

(8/19664) Altered trafficking of lysosomal proteins in Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome due to mutations in the beta 3A subunit of the AP-3 adaptor.

Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome (HPS) is a genetic disorder characterized by defective lysosome-related organelles. Here, we report the identification of two HPS patients with mutations in the beta 3A subunit of the heterotetrameric AP-3 complex. The patients' fibroblasts exhibit drastically reduced levels of AP-3 due to enhanced degradation of mutant beta 3A. The AP-3 deficiency results in increased surface expression of the lysosomal membrane proteins CD63, lamp-1, and lamp-2, but not of nonlysosomal proteins. These differential effects are consistent with the preferential interaction of the AP-3 mu 3A subunit with tyrosine-based signals involved in lysosomal targeting. Our results suggest that AP-3 functions in protein sorting to lysosomes and provide an example of a human disease in which altered trafficking of integral membrane proteins is due to mutations in a component of the sorting machinery.  (+info)