(1/2167) Explanations for the clinical and microscopic localization of lesions in pemphigus foliaceus and vulgaris.

Patients with pemphigus foliaceus (PF) have blisters on skin, but not mucous membranes, whereas patients with pemphigus vulgaris (PV) develop blisters on mucous membranes and/or skin. PF and PV blisters are due to loss of keratinocyte cell-cell adhesion in the superficial and deep epidermis, respectively. PF autoantibodies are directed against desmoglein (Dsg) 1; PV autoantibodies bind Dsg3 or both Dsg3 and Dsg1. In this study, we test the hypothesis that coexpression of Dsg1 and Dsg3 in keratinocytes protects against pathology due to antibody-induced dysfunction of either one alone. Using passive transfer of pemphigus IgG to normal and DSG3(null) neonatal mice, we show that in the areas of epidermis and mucous membrane that coexpress Dsg1 and Dsg3, antibodies against either desmoglein alone do not cause spontaneous blisters, but antibodies against both do. In areas (such as superficial epidermis of normal mice) where Dsg1 without Dsg3 is expressed, anti-Dsg1 antibodies alone can cause blisters. Thus, the anti-desmoglein antibody profiles in pemphigus sera and the normal tissue distributions of Dsg1 and Dsg3 determine the sites of blister formation. These studies suggest that pemphigus autoantibodies inhibit the adhesive function of desmoglein proteins, and demonstrate that either Dsg1 or Dsg3 alone is sufficient to maintain keratinocyte adhesion.  (+info)

(2/2167) Regulation and function of family 1 and family 2 UDP-glucuronosyltransferase genes (UGT1A, UGT2B) in human oesophagus.

Human UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs) are expressed in a tissue-specific fashion in hepatic and extrahepatic tissues [Strassburg, Manns and Tukey (1998) J. Biol. Chem. 273, 8719-8726]. Previous work suggests that these enzymes play a protective role in chemical carcinogenesis [Strassburg, Manns and Tukey (1997) Cancer Res. 57, 2979-2985]. In this study, UGT1 and UGT2 gene expression was investigated in human oesophageal epithelium and squamous-cell carcinoma in addition to the characterization of individual UGT isoforms using recombinant protein. UGT mRNA expression was characterized by duplex reverse transcriptase-PCR analysis and revealed the expression of UGT1A7, UGT1A8, UGT1A9 and UGT1A10 mRNAs. UGT1A1, UGT1A3, UGT1A4, UGT1A5 and UGT1A6 transcripts were not detected. UGT2 expression included UGT2B7, UGT2B10 and UGT2B15, but UGT2B4 mRNA was absent. UGT2 mRNA was present at significantly lower levels than UGT1 transcripts. This observation was in agreement with the analysis of catalytic activities in oesophageal microsomal protein, which was characterized by high glucuronidation rates for phenolic xenobiotics, all of which are classical UGT1 substrates. Whereas UGT1A9 was not regulated, differential regulation of UGT1A7 and UGT1A10 mRNA was observed between normal oesophageal epithelium and squamous-cell carcinoma. Expression and analysis in vitro of recombinant UGT1A7, UGT1A9, UGT1A10, UGT2B7 and UGT2B15 demonstrated that UGT1A7, UGT1A9 and UGT1A10 catalysed the glucuronidation of 7-hydroxybenzo(alpha)pyrene, as well as other environmental carcinogens, such as 2-hydroxyamino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo-(4, 5-beta)-pyridine. Although UGT1A9 was not regulated in the carcinoma tissue, the five-fold reduction in 7-hydroxybenzo(alpha)pyrene glucuronidation could be attributed to regulation of UGT1A7 and UGT1A10. These data elucidate an individual regulation of human UGT1A and UGT2B genes in human oesophagus and provide evidence for specific catalytic activities of individual human UGT isoforms towards environmental carcinogens that have been implicated in cellular carcinogenesis.  (+info)

(3/2167) Invasion of human mucosal epithelial cells by Neisseria gonorrhoeae upregulates expression of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1).

Infection of the mucosa by Neisseria gonorrhoeae involves adherence to and invasion of epithelial cells. Little is known, however, about the expression by mucosal epithelial cells of molecules that mediate cellular interactions between epithelial cells and neutrophils at the site of gonococcal infection. The aim of this study was to determine the expression of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1) by epithelial cells during the process of gonococcal invasion. The highly invasive strain FA1090 and the poorly invasive strain MS11 were incubated with human endometrial adenocarcinoma (HEC-1-B) or human cervical carcinoma (ME-180) epithelial cells, after which ICAM-1 expression was measured by flow cytometry. After 15 h of infection with FA1090, expression of ICAM-1 increased 4.7- and 2.1-fold for HEC-1-B and ME-180 cells, respectively, whereas 15 h of infection of HEC-1-B cells with MS11 increased ICAM-1 expression only 1.6-fold. ICAM-1 expression was restricted to the cell surface, since no soluble ICAM-1 was detected. The distribution of staining was heterogeneous and mimicked that seen after treatment of HEC-1-B cells with the ICAM-1 agonist tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) in the absence of bacteria. PCR and dot blot analyses of ICAM-1 mRNA showed no change in levels over time in response to infection. Although TNF-alpha was produced by HEC-1-B cells after infection, the extent of ICAM-1 upregulation was not affected by neutralizing anti-TNF-alpha antiserum. Dual-fluorescence flow cytometry showed that the cells with the highest levels of ICAM-1 expression were cells with associated gonococci. We conclude that epithelial cells upregulate the expression of ICAM-1 in response to infection with invasive gonococci. On the mucosa, upregulation of ICAM-1 by infected epithelial cells may function to maintain neutrophils at the site of infection, thereby reducing further invasion of the mucosa by gonococci.  (+info)

(4/2167) Clearance of Chlamydia trachomatis from the murine genital mucosa does not require perforin-mediated cytolysis or Fas-mediated apoptosis.

The molecular mechanisms of resistance to genital infection with the mouse pneumonitis (MoPn) strain of Chlamydia trachomatis are unknown. A role for major histocompatibility complex class II-restricted, interleukin-12-dependent CD4(+) T cells has been established, but the functional activity of these cells does not depend on secretion of gamma interferon. Here we examined the potential contribution of T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity and apoptosis to mucosal clearance of MoPn by using mice deficient in the molecular mediators of target cell lysis. Animals lacking perforin, Fas, Fas ligand, or both perforin and Fas ligand were infected genitally with C. trachomatis MoPn and monitored for expression of immunity to chlamydial antigens and clearance of MoPn from the genital mucosa. In each case, the profile of spleen cytokine production, the magnitude of the host antibody response, and the kinetics of chlamydial clearance were similar to those of genetically intact controls. Compensatory overproduction of tumor necrosis factor alpha, an alternate mediator of apoptosis in certain cell types, did not appear to account for the ability of mutant mice to resolve Chlamydia infections. These results fail to support CD4(+) T-cell-mediated apoptosis or CD8(+) T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity as being critical to the clearance of C. trachomatis MoPn urogenital infections.  (+info)

(5/2167) Langerhans cells in the human oesophagus.

The dendrite cells of Langerhans, first identified in the epidermis, have now been observed in the middle and superficial layers of the normal human oesophageal mucosa. They exhibit typical Langerhans granules, but no desmosomes and tonofilaments. They often have irregular indented nuclei, with a relatively pale cytoplasm contrasting with that of the adjacent squamous cells. These cells are sometimes difficult to distinguish from intra-epithelial lymphocytes, which are also encountered in the oesophageal mucosa and which share certain ultrastructural characteristics with Langerhans cells.  (+info)

(6/2167) Oesophageal epithelial innervation in health and reflux oesophagitis.

BACKGROUND: The response of the oesophagus to refluxed gastric contents is likely to depend on intact neural mechanisms in the oesophageal mucosa. The epithelial innervation has not been systematically evaluated in health or reflux disease. AIMS: To study oesophageal epithelial innervation in controls, and also inflamed and non-inflamed mucosa in patients with reflux oesophagitis and healed oesophagitis. PATIENTS: Ten controls, nine patients with reflux oesophagitis, and five patients with healed oesophagitis. METHODS: Oesophageal epithelial biopsy specimens were obtained at endoscopy. The distribution of the neuronal marker protein gene product 9.5 (PGP), and the neuropeptides calcitonin gene related peptide (CGRP), neuropeptide Y (NPY), substance P (SP), and vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) were investigated by immunohistochemistry. Density of innervation was assessed by the proportion of papillae in each oesophageal epithelial biopsy specimen containing immunoreactive fibres (found in the subepithelium and epithelial papillae, but not penetrating the epithelium). RESULTS: The proportion of papillae positive for PGP immunoreactive nerve fibres was significantly increased in inflamed tissue when compared with controls, and non-inflamed and healed tissue. There was also a significant increase in VIP immunoreactive fibres within epithelial papillae. Other neuropeptides showed no proportional changes in inflammation. CONCLUSIONS: Epithelial biopsy specimens can be used to assess innervation in the oesophagus. The innervation of the oesophageal mucosa is not altered in non-inflamed tissue of patients with oesophagitis but alters in response to inflammation, where there is a selective increase (about three- to fourfold) in VIP containing nerves.  (+info)

(7/2167) Dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase deficiency and fluorouracil-related toxicity.

Dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase (DPD) is the initial and rate-limiting enzyme of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) catabolism. We report lymphocytic DPD data concerning a group of 53 patients (23 men, 30 women, mean age 58, range 36-73), treated by 5-FU-based chemotherapy in different French institutions and who developed unanticipated 5-FU-related toxicity. Lymphocyte samples (standard collection procedure) were sent to us for DPD determination (biochemical method). Among the whole group of 53 patients, 19 had a significant DPD deficiency (DD; below 150 fmol min(-1) mg(-1) protein, i.e. less than 70% of the mean value observed from previous population study). There was a greater majority of women in the DD group (15 out of 19, 79%) compared with the remaining 34 patients (15 out of 34, 44%, P<0.014). Toxicity was often severe, leading to patient death in two cases (both women). The toxicity score (sum of WHO grading, theoretical range 0-20) was twice as high in patients with marked DD (below 100 pmol min(-1) mg(-1) protein, n = 11, mean score = 13.2) compared with patients with moderate DD (between 150 and 100 pmol min(-1) mg(-1) protein, n = 8, mean score = 6.8), P = 0.008. In the DD group, there was a high frequency of neurotoxic syndromes (7 out of 19, 37%). The two deceased patients both had severe neurotoxicity. The occurrence of cardiac toxicity was relatively rare (1 out of 19, 5%). These data suggest that women are particularly prone to DPD deficiency and allow a more precise definition of the DD toxicity profile.  (+info)

(8/2167) Mucin expression and function in the female reproductive tract.

Reproductive tract epithelia are characterized by the presence of a thick, apical glycocalyx. This glycoprotein coat is drastically reduced in the uterus of many species during the time of embryo implantation. Recent studies indicate that mucin glycoproteins constitute a large proportion of the apical glycocalyx. One of these mucins, Muc-1, has particularly important functions at the luminal surface of the uterus and other female reproductive tract tissues. Muc-1 appears to play a dominant role in maintaining a functionally non-receptive uterine surface with regard to blastocyst attachment. Conversion to a receptive uterine state is brought about by the concerted actions of ovarian steroid hormones that in several species also strongly modulate Muc-1 protein and mRNA expression. Muc-1 also appears to serve a general function in protecting reproductive tract mucosa since Muc-1 null mice are particularly prone to bacterial infection. Collectively, these studies indicate that mucins, including Muc-1, play important barrier roles in reproductive processes and protection from bacterial pathogenesis in the female reproductive tract.  (+info)