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Concept: Cell adhesion molecule


L-selectin is a cell adhesion molecule that tethers free-flowing leukocytes from the blood to luminal vessel walls, facilitating the initial stages of their emigration from the circulation toward an extravascular inflammatory insult. Following shear-resistant adhesion to the vessel wall, L-selectin has frequently been reported to be rapidly cleaved from the plasma membrane (known as ectodomain shedding), with little knowledge of the timing or functional consequence of this event. Using advanced imaging techniques, we observe L-selectin shedding occurring exclusively as primary human monocytes actively engage in transendothelial migration (TEM). Moreover, the shedding was localized to transmigrating pseudopods within the subendothelial space. By capturing monocytes in midtransmigration, we could monitor the subcellular distribution of L-selectin and better understand how ectodomain shedding might contribute to TEM. Mechanistically, L-selectin loses association with calmodulin (CaM; a negative regulator of shedding) specifically within transmigrating pseudopods. In contrast, L-selectin/CaM interaction remained intact in nontransmigrated regions of monocytes. We show phosphorylation of L-selectin at Ser 364 is critical for CaM dissociation, which is also restricted to the transmigrating pseudopod. Pharmacological or genetic inhibition of L-selectin shedding significantly increased pseudopodial extensions in transmigrating monocytes, which potentiated invasive behavior during TEM and prevented the establishment of front/back polarity for directional migration persistence once TEM was complete. We conclude that L-selectin shedding directly regulates polarity in transmigrated monocytes, which affirms an active role for this molecule in driving later stages of the multistep adhesion cascade.

Concepts: Cell adhesion, Cell adhesion molecule, L-selectin


Miller-Dieker syndrome (MDS) is caused by a heterozygous deletion of chromosome 17p13.3 involving the genes LIS1 and YWHAE (coding for 14.3.3ε) and leads to malformations during cortical development. Here, we used patient-specific forebrain-type organoids to investigate pathological changes associated with MDS. Patient-derived organoids are significantly reduced in size, a change accompanied by a switch from symmetric to asymmetric cell division of ventricular zone radial glia cells (vRGCs). Alterations in microtubule network organization in vRGCs and a disruption of cortical niche architecture, including altered expression of cell adhesion molecules, are also observed. These phenotypic changes lead to a non-cell-autonomous disturbance of the N-cadherin/β-catenin signaling axis. Reinstalling active β-catenin signaling rescues division modes and ameliorates growth defects. Our data define the role of LIS1 and 14.3.3ε in maintaining the cortical niche and highlight the utility of organoid-based systems for modeling complex cell-cell interactions in vitro.

Concepts: DNA, Gene, Cell, Eukaryote, Developmental biology, Chromosome, Cell adhesion, Cell adhesion molecule


Intercellular adhesion and electrical excitability are considered separate cellular properties. Studies of myelinated fibres, however, show that voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) aggregate with cell adhesion molecules at discrete subcellular locations, such as the nodes of Ranvier. Demonstration of similar macromolecular organization in cardiac muscle is missing. Here we combine nanoscale-imaging (single-molecule localization microscopy; electron microscopy; and ‘angle view’ scanning patch clamp) with mathematical simulations to demonstrate distinct hubs at the cardiac intercalated disc, populated by clusters of the adhesion molecule N-cadherin and the VGSC NaV1.5. We show that the N-cadherin-NaV1.5 association is not random, that NaV1.5 molecules in these clusters are major contributors to cardiac sodium current, and that loss of NaV1.5 expression reduces intercellular adhesion strength. We speculate that adhesion/excitability nodes are key sites for crosstalk of the contractile and electrical molecular apparatus and may represent the structural substrate of cardiomyopathies in patients with mutations in molecules of the VGSC complex.

Concepts: Electron, Electric charge, Molecule, Cardiac muscle, Action potential, Cell adhesion, Cell adhesion molecule, Immunoglobulin superfamily


Myocardial infarction (MI) leads to a systemic surge of vascular inflammation in mice and humans, resulting in secondary ischemic complications and high mortality. We show that, in ApoE(-/-) mice with coronary ligation, increased sympathetic tone up-regulates not only hematopoietic leukocyte production but also plaque endothelial expression of adhesion molecules. To counteract the resulting arterial leukocyte recruitment, we developed nanoparticle-based RNA interference (RNAi) that effectively silences five key adhesion molecules. Simultaneously encapsulating small interfering RNA (siRNA)-targeting intercellular cell adhesion molecules 1 and 2 (Icam1 and Icam2), vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (Vcam1), and E- and P-selectins (Sele and Selp) into polymeric endothelial-avid nanoparticles reduced post-MI neutrophil and monocyte recruitment into atherosclerotic lesions and decreased matrix-degrading plaque protease activity. Five-gene combination RNAi also curtailed leukocyte recruitment to ischemic myocardium. Therefore, targeted multigene silencing may prevent complications after acute MI.

Concepts: Inflammation, Monocyte, Atherosclerosis, Cell adhesion molecule, Immunoglobulin superfamily, VCAM-1, E-selectin, P-selectin


Rheumatic heart disease (RHD) is a chronic condition characterized by fibrosis and scarring of the cardiac valves and damage to the heart muscle, leading to congestive heart failure and death. This prospective cohort study was conducted to investigate the possible relation between the levels of serum adhesion molecules and acute rheumatic fever (ARF) carditis, valvular insult severity, and residual valvular lesion after improvement of rheumatic activity. Serum levels of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1), vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1), and E-selectin were assayed by enzyme-linked immunoassay (ELISA) for 50 children with ARF carditis during activity and after improvement and for 50 healthy children as control subjects. After the acute attack, patients were followed up regularly to detect residual valvular lesion. The serum levels of these adhesion molecules were significantly higher in the patients than in the control group (p < 0.001). In addition, the levels of serum adhesion molecules were significantly higher in the patients with severe carditis than in the patients with mild to moderate carditis (p < 0.001). Among the severe carditis group, the level of serum adhesion molecules was significantly higher among the patients with heart failure than among the patients without heart failure (p < 0.001). Furthermore, the pretreatment serum levels of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 were significantly higher among the patients with residual valve lesion (p = 0.002) than among those without the lesion (p < 0.001). The cutoff values were obtained for the prediction of residual valvular lesion (ICAM-1, >1,032.3 μg/ml; VCAM-1, >3,662.3 μg/ml; E-selectin, >104.8 μg/ml). Finally, by combining the three adhesion molecules in a single prediction model, the highest area under the curve (AUC) ± standard error (SE) was obtained (0.869 ± 0.052), and the positive likelihood ratio for having a residual valvular lesion was increased (17.33). Levels of serum adhesion molecules could predict residual valvular lesions in RHD patients. The authors recommend that the serum level of adhesion molecules be measured in all cases of ARF carditis.

Concepts: Cardiology, Heart, Rheumatic fever, Cell adhesion molecule, Rheumatism, Intercellular adhesion molecule, VCAM-1, Heart valve


OBJECTIVES:: In our previous research the antihypertensive properties of lycopene-containing tomato oleoresin have been revealed. The present study was aimed to assess if oleoresin interferes in the inflammatory signalling in endothelial cells, imitating reduction of inflammatory processes in the vessel wall and in this way to propose the mechanism for the reduction of blood pressure by oleoresin. METHODS AND RESULTS:: A wide number of functional and inflammatory markers were investigated in two cultured endothelial cell models [EA.hy926 and human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC)], exposed to oleoresin and carotenoids lycopene and lutein. All the carotenoids significantly improved basic endothelial function as measured by increased nitric oxide and decreased endothelin (ET-1) release. They were effective in attenuation of inflammatory nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-κB) signalling: decrease of tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α)-induced leukocytes adhesion, expression of adhesion molecules inter-cellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1) and vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (VCAM-1), and nuclear translocation of NF-κB components as well as some revert of inhibitor of kappa B (IκB) ubiquitination. In addition, the carotenoids were able to inhibit NF-κB activation in transfected endothelial cells. When combined with lutein, oleoresin exerted synergistic effect on preclusion of leukocytes adhesion. CONCLUSIONS:: Prevention of over-expression of adhesion molecules through inhibition of NF-κB signalling may be one of the main mechanisms driving carotenoids to attenuate inflammatory leukocyte adhesion to endothelium. This is the first profound study on the mechanisms involved in the positive action of natural tomato products in endothelial cells.

Concepts: Inflammation, Atherosclerosis, Blood vessel, Cell adhesion molecule, Endothelium, Nitric oxide, Vasodilation, VCAM-1


BACKGROUND:: Switching from boosted protease inhibitors (PI/r) to raltegravir (RAL) results in a better plasma lipid profile than continuing PI/r. Whether this strategy affects plasma biomarkers associated with atherosclerosis is unknown. METHODS:: We assessed 48-week changes in fasting lipids and several biomarkers including serum high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP), monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP-1), osteoprotegerin, interleukin (IL) 6, IL-10, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1), vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (VCAM-1), E-selectin and P-selectin, adiponectin, insulin, and D-dimer in otherwise healthy, virologically suppressed HIV-infected patients treated with PI/r who randomly switched from PI/r to RAL or continued with PI/r in the SPIRAL trial. Biomarkers and lipids at baseline and 48-week changes between both study arms were compared. Correlations between changes in biomarkers and changes in lipids were also evaluated. RESULTS:: Of 273 patients initiating study drugs in the SPIRAL trial, 233 (119 RAL, 114 PI/r) remained on allocated therapy for 48 weeks and had sera available for the purpose of this substudy. Triglycerides (-28%, P < 0.0001), total (-14%, P < 0.0001), low-density lipoprotein (-9%, P = 0.0069), and high-density lipoprotein (-10%, P = 0.0017) cholesterol decreased in RAL relative to the PI/r group. Among biomarkers, hsCRP (-40%, P < 0.0001), MCP-1 (-20%, P = 0.0003), osteoprotegerin (-13%, P = 0.0024), IL-6 (-46%,P < 0.0001), TNF-α (-27%, P = 0.0011), insulin (-26%, P < 0.0001), and D-dimer (-8%, P = 0.0187) decreased in RAL relative to PI/r group, whereas IL-10 (+1%, P = 0.7773), ICAM-1 (-6%, P = 0.1255), VCAM-1(0%, P = 0.8671), E-selectin (-9%, P = 0.2174), P-selectin (-6%, P = 0.3865), and adiponectin (+8%, P = 0.2028) remained unchanged. Biomarkers and lipids changes at 48 weeks were weakly correlated. CONCLUSION:: Switching from PI/r to RAL induced significant changes in several cardiovascular biomarkers that were not completely explained by lipid changes.

Concepts: Cholesterol, Inflammation, Atherosclerosis, Cardiovascular disease, Cell adhesion molecule, Lipid, Tumor necrosis factor-alpha, VCAM-1


The process of atherosclerosis is affected by interactions among numerous biological pathways. Accumulating evidence shows that endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress plays a crucial role in the development of atherosclerosis. Rho-kinase is an effector of small GTP-binding protein Rho, and has been implicated as an atherogenic factor. Previous studies demonstrated that fasudil, a specific Rho-kinase inhibitor, exerts a cardioprotective effect by downregulating ER stress signaling. However, the molecular link between ER stress and Rho-kinase in endothelial cells has not been elucidated. In this study, we investigated the mechanisms by which fasudil regulates endothelial inflammation during ER stress. Tunicamycin, an established ER stress inducer, increased vascular cellular adhesion molecule (VCAM)-1 expression in endothelial cells. Intriguingly, fasudil inhibited VCAM-1 induction. From a mechanistic stand point, fasudil inhibited expression of activating transcription factor (ATF)4 and subsequent C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP) induction by tunicamycin. Furthermore, fasudil attenuated tunicamycin-induced phophorylation of p38MAPK that is crucial for the atherogenic response during ER stress. These findings indicate that Rho-kinase regulates ER stress-mediated VCAM-1 induction by ATF4- and p38MAPK-dependent signaling pathways. Rho-kinase inhibition by fasudil would be an important therapeutic approach against atherosclerosis, in particular, under conditions of ER stress.

Concepts: Inflammation, DNA, Atherosclerosis, Endoplasmic reticulum, Cell adhesion molecule, Endothelium, Unfolded protein response, VCAM-1


Purpose and Study Objective: Whether the preterm mothers' mature milk retains the same cellular components as those in colostrum including stem-like cell, cell adhesion molecules, and immune cells.

Concepts: DNA, Cell biology, Cell adhesion, Cell adhesion molecule, Cellular component, Design, Immunoglobulin superfamily


Episodic memory performance is the result of distinct mental processes, such as learning, memory maintenance, and emotional modulation of memory strength. Such processes can be effectively dissociated using computational models. Here we performed gene set enrichment analyses of model parameters estimated from the episodic memory performance of 1,765 healthy young adults. We report robust and replicated associations of the amine compound SLC (solute-carrier) transporters gene set with the learning rate, of the collagen formation and transmembrane receptor protein tyrosine kinase activity gene sets with the modulation of memory strength by negative emotional arousal, and of the L1 cell adhesion molecule (L1CAM) interactions gene set with the repetition-based memory improvement. Furthermore, in a large functional MRI sample of 795 subjects we found that the association between L1CAM interactions and memory maintenance revealed large clusters of differences in brain activity in frontal cortical areas. Our findings provide converging evidence that distinct genetic profiles underlie specific mental processes of human episodic memory. They also provide empirical support to previous theoretical and neurobiological studies linking specific neuromodulators to the learning rate and linking neural cell adhesion molecules to memory maintenance. Furthermore, our study suggests additional memory-related genetic pathways, which may contribute to a better understanding of the neurobiology of human memory.

Concepts: Protein, Signal transduction, Neuroscience, Cognitive science, Cell adhesion, Cell adhesion molecule, Immunoglobulin superfamily, L1