Novel regulation of the homeotic gene Scr associated with a crustacean leg-to-maxilliped appendage transformation.
Homeotic genes are known to be involved in patterning morphological structures along the antero-posterior axis of insects and vertebrates. Because of their important roles in development, changes in the function and expression patterns of homeotic genes may have played a major role in the evolution of different body plans. For example, it has been proposed that during the evolution of several crustacean lineages, changes in the expression patterns of the homeotic genes Ultrabithorax and abdominal-A have played a role in transformation of the anterior thoracic appendages into mouthparts termed maxillipeds. This homeotic-like transformation is recapitulated at the late stages of the direct embryonic development of the crustacean Porcellio scaber (Oniscidea, Isopoda). Interestingly, this morphological change is associated with apparent novelties both in the transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation of the Porcellio scaber ortholog of the Drosophila homeotic gene, Sex combs reduced (Scr). Specifically, we find that Scr mRNA is present in the second maxillary segment and the first pair of thoracic legs (T1) in early embryos, whereas protein accumulates only in the second maxillae. In later stages, however, high levels of SCR appear in the T1 legs, which correlates temporally with the transformation of these appendages into maxillipeds. Our observations provide further insight into the process of the homeotic leg-to-maxilliped transformation in the evolution of crustaceans and suggest a novel regulatory mechanism for this process in this group of arthropods. (+info)
Retinoids are produced by glia in the lateral ganglionic eminence and regulate striatal neuron differentiation.
In order to identify molecular mechanisms involved in striatal development, we employed a subtraction cloning strategy to enrich for genes expressed in the lateral versus the medial ganglionic eminence. Using this approach, the homeobox gene Meis2 was found highly expressed in the lateral ganglionic eminence and developing striatum. Since Meis2 has recently been shown to be upregulated by retinoic acid in P19 EC cells (Oulad-Abdelghani, M., Chazaud, C., Bouillet, P., Sapin, V., Chambon, P. and Dolle, P. (1997) Dev. Dyn. 210, 173-183), we examined a potential role for retinoids in striatal development. Our results demonstrate that the lateral ganglionic eminence, unlike its medial counterpart or the adjacent cerebral cortex, is a localized source of retinoids. Interestingly, glia (likely radial glia) in the lateral ganglionic eminence appear to be a major source of retinoids. Thus, as lateral ganglionic eminence cells migrate along radial glial fibers into the developing striatum, retinoids from these glial cells could exert an effect on striatal neuron differentiation. Indeed, the treatment of lateral ganglionic eminence cells with retinoic acid or agonists for the retinoic acid receptors or retinoid X receptors, specifically enhances their striatal neuron characteristics. These findings, therefore, strongly support the notion that local retinoid signalling within the lateral ganglionic eminence regulates striatal neuron differentiation. (+info)
Purification and characterization of ADP-ribosyl cyclase from Euglena gracilis.
ADP-ribosyl cyclase, which catalyzes the conversion from NAD+ to cyclic adenosine diphosphoribose (cADPR), is proposed to participate in cell cycle regulation in Euglena gracilis. This enzyme, which was found as a membrane-bound protein, was purified almost the homogeneity after solubilization with deoxycholate, and found to be a monomeric protein with a molecular mass of 40 kDa. Its Km value for NAD+ was estimated to be 0.4 mM, and cADPR, a product of the enzyme, inhibited the enzyme competitively with respect to NAD+ whereas another product, nicotinamide, showed noncompetitive (mixed-type) inhibition. In contrast to mammalian CD38 and BST-1, Euglena ADP-ribosyl cyclase lacked cADPR hydrolase activity. (+info)
The CTLA-4 gene is expressed in placental fibroblasts.
In order to elucidate the mechanisms that ensure survival of the allogeneic fetus, we are investigating the expression pattern of genes that are involved in peripheral self-tolerance in tissues at the maternal-fetal interface. Cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated protein 4 (CTLA-4) is a negative regulator of T cell activation and may modulate peripheral self-tolerance. Previously, we reported the preferential transmission of maternally-inherited shorter alleles at a 3'-UTR microsatellite locus to liveborn children, but random transmission of paternally-inherited alleles, suggesting that CTLA-4 may be involved in the maintenance of tolerance at the maternal-fetal interface. In this report, we demonstrate that CTLA-4 mRNA and protein are indeed expressed in fetal tissues at the maternal-fetal interface throughout gestation. (+info)
Characterization of viral dynamics in human immunodeficiency virus type 1-infected patients treated with combination antiretroviral therapy: relationships to host factors, cellular restoration, and virologic end points.
Biphasic plasma viral decays were modeled in 48 patients treated with ritonavir, zidovudine, and lamivudine. Estimated first- and second-phase decay rates were d1 as 0.47/day and d2 as 0.04/day. Interpatient differences in both decay rates were significant. The d1 was directly correlated with baseline CD4+, CD4+CD28+, and CD8+CD28+ T lymphocyte counts (P<.05) and inversely correlated with baseline virus load (P=.044) and the magnitude of CD4+ and CD8+ T lymphocyte recovery (P<.01). The d2 was directly correlated with baseline percentage of CD8+ T lymphocytes (P=.023), the CD8+CD38+ cell number (P=.024), and the level of IgG that binds to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1 gp120 (P=.02). Viral decay rates were not predictive of treatment failure or durability of viral suppression. These exploratory findings are consistent with a model in which immunologic factors contribute to elimination of HIV-infected cells and suggest a dynamic interplay between regulation of HIV expression and lymphocyte activation and recovery. (+info)
Shorter survival in advanced human immunodeficiency virus type 1 infection is more closely associated with T lymphocyte activation than with plasma virus burden or virus chemokine coreceptor usage.
To define predictors of survival time in late human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) disease, long- and short-duration survivors were studied after their CD4+ T cells fell to +info)
Cellular and molecular characterization of the scurfy mouse mutant.
Mice hemizygous (Xsf/Y) for the X-linked mutation scurfy (sf) develop a severe and rapidly fatal lymphoproliferative disease mediated by CD4+CD8- T lymphocytes. We have undertaken phenotypic and functional studies to more accurately identify the immunologic pathway(s) affected by this important mutation. Flow cytometric analyses of lymphoid cell populations reveal that scurfy syndrome is characterized by changes in several phenotypic parameters, including an increase in Mac-1+ cells and a decrease in B220+ cells, changes that may result from the production of extremely high levels of the cytokine granulocyte-macrophage CSF by scurfy T cells. Scurfy T cells also exhibit strong up-regulation of cell surface Ags indicative of in vivo activation, including CD69, CD25, CD80, and CD86. Both scurfy and normal T cells are responsive to two distinct signals provided by the TCR and by ligation of CD28; scurfy cells, however, are hyperresponsive to TCR ligation and exhibit a decreased requirement for costimulation through CD28 relative to normal controls. This hypersensitivity may result, in part, from increased costimulation through B7-1 and B7-2, whose expression is up-regulated on scurfy T cells. Although the specific defect leading to this hyperactivation has not been identified, we also demonstrate that scurfy T cells are less sensitive than normal controls to inhibitors of tyrosine kinases such as genistein and herbimycin A, and the immunosuppressant cyclosporin A. One interpretation of our data would suggest that the scurfy mutation results in a defect, which interferes with the normal down-regulation of T cell activation. (+info)
IL-5 induces IgG1 isotype switch recombination in mouse CD38-activated sIgD-positive B lymphocytes.
Mouse B cells express CD38, whose ligation by anti-CD38 Ab induces their proliferation and protection from apoptosis. We previously showed that stimulation of mouse splenic B cells with IL-5 together with CS/2, an anti-mouse CD38 mAb, induces production of IgG1 and IgM. Here we examined the role of IL-5 and CS/2 in the expression of germline gamma1 transcripts and the generation of reciprocal products forming DNA circles as byproducts of mu-gamma1 switch recombination. By itself, CS/2 induced significant expression of germline gamma1 transcripts in splenic naive B cells, whereas IL-5 neither induced nor enhanced germline gamma1 expression. Increased cellular content of reciprocal product, which is characteristic of mu-gamma1 recombination, was not observed after culturing B cells with CS/2, but increased reciprocal product, along with high levels of lgG1 secretion, was found when B cells were cultured with CS/2 plus IL-5. Although IL-4 did not, by itself, induce mu-gamma1 recombination in B cells stimulated with CS/2, in conjunction with CS/2 plus IL-5, IL-4 dramatically enhanced sterile gamma1 transcription and IgG1 production. These results demonstrate that CD38 ligation induces only germline gamma1 transcription and that IL-5 promotes both mu-gamma1 switch recombination and lgG1 secretion in an IL-4-independent manner. (+info)