Differential regulation of the human nidogen gene promoter region by a novel cell-type-specific silencer element. (1/3149)

Transfection analyses of the human nidogen promoter region in nidogen-producing fibroblasts from adult skin revealed multiple positive and negative cis-acting elements controlling nidogen gene expression. Characterization of the positive regulatory domains by gel mobility-shift assays and co-transfection studies in Drosophila SL2 cells unequivocally demonstrated that Sp1-like transcription factors are essential for a high expression of the human nidogen gene. Analysis of the negative regulatory domains identified a novel silencer element between nt -1333 and -1322, which is bound by a distinct nuclear factor, by using extracts from adult but not from embryonal fibroblasts. In embryonal fibroblasts, which express significantly higher amounts of nidogen mRNA as compared with adult fibroblasts, this inhibitory nidogen promoter region did not affect nidogen and SV40 promoter activities. The silencer element seems to be active only in nidogen-producing cells. Therefore this regulatory element might function in vivo to limit nidogen gene expression in response to external stimuli. However, none of the identified regulatory elements, including the silencer, contribute significantly to cell-specific expression of the human nidogen gene. Instead we provide evidence that gene expression in epidermal keratinocytes that are not producing nidogen is repressed by methylation-specific and chromatin-dependent mechanisms.  (+info)

Phenotypic and functional characterisation of myofibroblasts, macrophages, and lymphocytes migrating out of the human gastric lamina propria following the loss of epithelial cells. (2/3149)

BACKGROUND: The basement membrane of human colonic mucosa contains numerous discrete pores. We have recently shown that following loss of the surface epithelium, many cells migrate out of the colonic lamina propria via basement membrane pores. AIMS: To characterise cells migrating out via basement membrane pores of the human gastric lamina propria, following loss of the surface epithelium. METHODS: Fresh human gastric mucosal samples were completely denuded of epithelial cells and placed in culture. Tissue samples were studied by electron microscopy (EM) and cells by EM, FACS analysis, immunohistochemistry, and reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). RESULTS: EM showed numerous discrete pores (0. 65-8.29 microm in diameter) in the subepithelial basement membrane. During culture of mucosal samples denuded of epithelial cells, lymphocytes, macrophages, and myofibroblasts migrated out of the lamina propria via the basement membrane pores. The lymphocytes were predominantly CD45RO+ and CD69+ T cells. Macrophages were shown to express cyclooxygenase (COX) 1 and 2 enzymes. Myofibroblasts were established in culture and, despite prolonged culture and passage, retained their phenotype. They expressed mRNA and protein for COX 1 and 2 enzymes and their release of prostaglandin E2 was inhibited by selective COX 1 and 2 inhibitors. CONCLUSIONS: Lamina propria cells migrating out of cultured denuded gastric mucosal samples have been characterised phenotypically and functionally. Such cells would be suitable for studies of their interactions with epithelial cells and also with Helicobacter pylori and its products.  (+info)

Changes in basement membrane thickness in the human endometrium during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. (3/3149)

We have examined aspects of the fine structure of the basal laminae associated with the luminal and glandular epithelium and small blood vessels in the human endometrium. Four short studies are presented and reviewed. Study 1 examined biopsies from 20 fertile women taken on days after the luteinizing hormone surge (LH): LH +2, 4, 6, 8 and 10. The basal lamina (both lamina densa and lucida) increased in thickness over the period studied. Study 2 again studied the glandular epithelium and examined the effect of RU486 (a progesterone receptor blocker) administered on day LH +3 and biopsied on day LH +6. The basal laminae were found to be the same as LH +2 control group but thinner than LH +6 control. Study 3 documented increased thickness of the basal laminae between LH +6, 8 and 13 in the luminal epithelium. The within-group coefficient of variation was 16% and 27% for LH +6 and LH +13 groups but only 2 % for LH +8. Study 4 demonstrated an increase in basal lamina thickness associated with small blood vessels between LH +6 and LH +10 in normal fertile women. The basal lamina provides the interface between epithelial and mesenchymal environments; changes in its structure can alter the phenotypic expression of the epithelia. It is one of the maternal barriers that must be transgressed by the trophoblast during implantation. Together, these combined studies provide quantitative baseline structural information on the electron microscopical appearance of the basal lamina during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle.  (+info)

Receptor-mediated transcytosis of lactoferrin through the blood-brain barrier. (4/3149)

Lactoferrin (Lf) is an iron-binding protein involved in host defense against infection and severe inflammation; it accumulates in the brain during neurodegenerative disorders. Before determining Lf function in brain tissue, we investigated its origin and demonstrate here that it crosses the blood-brain barrier. An in vitro model of the blood-brain barrier was used to examine the mechanism of Lf transport to the brain. We report that differentiated bovine brain capillary endothelial cells exhibited specific high (Kd = 37.5 nM; n = 90,000/cell) and low (Kd = 2 microM; n = 900,000 sites/cell) affinity binding sites. Only the latter were present on nondifferentiated cells. The surface-bound Lf was internalized only by the differentiated cell population leading to the conclusion that Lf receptors were acquired during cell differentiation. A specific unidirectional transport then occurred via a receptor-mediated process with no apparent intraendothelial degradation. We further report that iron may cross the bovine brain capillary endothelial cells as a complex with Lf. Finally, we show that the low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein might be involved in this process because its specific antagonist, the receptor-associated protein, inhibits 70% of Lf transport.  (+info)

Repopulation of different layers of host human Bruch's membrane by retinal pigment epithelial cell grafts. (5/3149)

PURPOSE: To determine the morphology of human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) after reattachment to different ultrastructural layers of human Bruch's membrane (BM). METHODS: Bruch's membrane explants were prepared from eyes of 23 human donors (age range, 11-89 years). The basal lamina of the RPE, inner collagenous layer, and elastin layer were removed sequentially by mechanical and enzymatic techniques. First-passage cells of human RPE (15,000 cells/6 mm explant) from three donors (ages, 52, 64, and 80 years) were plated onto different layers of human BM, and the explants were examined by scanning and transmission electron microscopy up to 21 days later. RESULTS: RPE flattened and extended footplates 6 hours after plating onto basal lamina. Cells remained round 6 and 24 hours after plating onto the inner collagenous, elastin, or outer collagenous layer. The RPE cells became confluent 14 days after plating onto basal lamina but did not become confluent up to 21 days after plating onto the inner collagenous or elastin layer. Sparse round cells were observed 21 days after plating onto deeper layers, suggesting extensive loss of RPE. CONCLUSIONS: The morphology and subsequent behavior of the RPE reattached to BM depends on the anatomic layer of BM available for cell reattachment. The results suggest that the ability of transplanted RPE to repopulate BM in age-related macular degeneration and other disorders may depend on the layer of BM available to serve as a substrate for cell reattachment.  (+info)

Nodular glomerulosclerosis with deposition of monoclonal immunoglobulin heavy chains lacking C(H)1. (6/3149)

The objective of this study was to further characterize the clinical and immunopathologic features of heavy chain deposition disease (HCDD), a recently described entity. Four patients were diagnosed as having HCDD on a kidney biopsy. All presented with nodular glomerulosclerosis with deposition of gamma1 heavy chains lacking CH1 epitopes, but without light chains. Two different patterns were observed in the serum. First, patients 1 and 2 had a circulating monoclonal IgGlambda containing a short gamma1 heavy chain lacking CH1 epitopes, with an apparent molecular weight of 40 kD consistent with a complete CH1 deletion. Biosynthetic experiments also showed that the deleted heavy chain was produced in excess compared with light chains, and was secreted in vitro together with half Ig molecules, although these abnormal components were not detected by Western blot analysis of whole serum. Second, patients 3 and 4 had a circulating monoclonal IgG1lambda with an apparently normal, nondeleted heavy chain subunit, but serum fractionation followed by immunoblotting revealed an isolated monoclonal gamma1 chain lacking CH1 epitopes. These data strongly suggest that renal deposition of a CH1-deleted heavy chain circulating in low amounts in the serum as a free unassembled subunit is a major feature of HCDD. The CH1 deletion is most likely responsible for the premature secretion in blood of the heavy chain by a clone of plasma cells.  (+info)

Nerve growth factor inhibits HCO3- absorption in renal thick ascending limb through inhibition of basolateral membrane Na+/H+ exchange. (7/3149)

Nerve growth factor (NGF) inhibits transepithelial HCO3- absorption in the rat medullary thick ascending limb (MTAL). To investigate the mechanism of this inhibition, MTALs were perfused in vitro in Na+-free solutions, and apical and basolateral membrane Na+/H+ exchange activities were determined from rates of pHi recovery after lumen or bath Na+ addition. NGF (0.7 nM in the bath) had no effect on apical Na+/H+ exchange activity, but inhibited basolateral Na+/H+ exchange activity by 50%. Inhibition of basolateral Na+/H+ exchange activity with ethylisopropyl amiloride (EIPA) secondarily reduces apical Na+/H+ exchange activity and HCO3- absorption in the MTAL (Good, D. W., George, T., and Watts, B. A., III (1995) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 92, 12525-12529). To determine whether a similar mechanism could explain inhibition of HCO3- absorption by NGF, apical Na+/H+ exchange activity was assessed in physiological solutions (146 mM Na+) by measurement of the initial rate of cell acidification after lumen EIPA addition. Under these conditions, in which basolateral Na+/H+ exchange activity is present, NGF inhibited apical Na+/H+ exchange activity. Inhibition of HCO3- absorption by NGF was eliminated in the presence of bath EIPA or in the absence of bath Na+. Also, NGF blocked inhibition of HCO3- absorption by bath EIPA. We conclude that NGF inhibits basolateral Na+/H+ exchange activity in the MTAL, an effect opposite from the stimulation of Na+/H+ exchange by growth factors in other systems. NGF inhibits transepithelial HCO3- absorption through inhibition of basolateral Na+/H+ exchange, most likely as the result of functional coupling in which primary inhibition of basolateral Na+/H+ exchange activity results secondarily in inhibition of apical Na+/H+ exchange activity. These findings establish a role for basolateral Na+/H+ exchange in the regulation of renal tubule HCO3- absorption.  (+info)

Epidermal organization and differentiation of HaCaT keratinocytes in organotypic coculture with human dermal fibroblasts. (8/3149)

The immortal human keratinocyte line HaCaT is frequently used as a paradigm for skin keratinocytes in vitro because of its highly preserved differentiation capacity. HaCaT cells form a nearly regular epidermal architecture when transplanted onto subcutaneous tissue of athymic mice. In order to analyze further their differentiation capacity in vitro, HaCaT cells were studied in organotypic cocultures on top of collagen gels containing human dermal fibroblasts. Within 1 wk HaCaT cells formed a still dysplastic epithelium, the thickness of which correlated with the number of fibroblasts in the collagen gel. With further culture time of up to 3 wk a remarkably well structured and differentiated squamous epithelium developed. After 1 wk, keratins 10 and 16, involucrin, and transglutaminase I were expressed in suprabasal layers, whereas filaggrin, keratin 2e, and loricrin appeared after 2-3 wk. Within this time, a nearly complete basement membrane had formed including hemidesmosomes and anchoring fibrils. Epithelial cell proliferation became restricted to the basal layer after 2 and 3 wk. Using the TdT-mediated dUTP nick end labeling assay, fragmentation of DNA was detectable in nuclei of the parakeratotic stratum corneum. Ultrastructurally, many features of keratinization accumulated after 2 and 3 wk, though an orthokeratotic keratinization was not achieved, in contrast to HaCaT transplants. This differentiation deficiency - as compared with normal keratinocytes -- might be due to a lack of paracrine factors important for keratinocyte differentiation or to a reduced sensitivity of these cells. Nevertheless, this high degree of differentiation under organotypic conditions qualifies this cell line as an appropriate model for elucidation of the molecular mechanisms regulating keratinocyte growth and differentiation and for use in pharmacotoxicology.  (+info)