SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Journal: Biomolecules & therapeutics

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We attempted to examine anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effects of 4&-O-β-D-glucosyl-5-O-methylvisamminol (GOMV), the first epigenetic inhibitor of histone phosphorylation at Ser10. While GOMV did not affect the viability of murine macrophage RAW 264.7 cells, it significantly suppressed lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced generation of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and nitric oxide (NO) through transcriptional inhibition of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS). GOMV also scavenged free radicals in vitro, increased NF-E2-related factor 2 (NRF2), and activated antioxidant response element (ARE), thereby resulting in the induction of phase II cytoprotective enzymes in human keratinocyte HaCaT cells. Finally, GOMV significantly protected HaCaT cells against 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA)-induced oxidative intracellular damages. Together, our results illustrate that GOMV possesses anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant activity.

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G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are membrane receptors whose agonist-induced dynamic conformational changes trigger heterotrimeric G protein activation, followed by GRK-mediated phosphorylation and arrestin-mediated desensitization. Cytosolic regions of GPCRs have been studied extensively because they are direct contact sites with G proteins, GRKs, and arrestins. Among various cytosolic regions, the role of helix 8 is least understood, although a few studies have suggested that it is involved in G protein activation, receptor localization, and/or internalization. In the present study, we investigated the role of helix 8 in dopamine receptor signaling focusing on dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) and dopamine D2 receptor (D2R). D1R couples exclusively to Gs, whereas D2R couples exclusively to Gi. Bioinformatic analysis implied that the sequences of helix 8 may affect GPCR-G protein coupling selectivity; therefore, we evaluated if swapping helix 8 between D1R and D2R changed G protein selectivity. Our results suggest that helix 8 is not involved in D1R-Gs or D2R-Gi coupling selectivity. Instead, we observed that D1R with D2R helix 8 or D1R with an increased number of hydrophobic residues in helix 8 relative to wild-type showed diminished β-arrestin-mediated desensitization, resulting in increased Gs signaling.

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Paeonol has neuroprotective function, which could be useful for improving central nervous system disorder. The purpose of this study was to characterize the functional mechanism involved in brain transport of paeonol through blood-brain barrier (BBB). Brain transport of paeonol was characterized by internal carotid artery perfusion (ICAP), carotid artery single injection technique (brain uptake index, BUI) and intravenous (IV) injection technique in vivo. The transport mechanism of paeonol was examined using conditionally immortalized rat brain capillary endothelial cell line (TR-BBB) as an in vitro model of BBB. Brain volume of distribution (VD) of [3H]paeonol in rat brain was about 6-fold higher than that of [14C]sucrose, the vascular space marker of BBB. The uptake of [3H]paeonol was concentration-dependent. Brain volume of distribution of paeonol and BUI as in vivo and inhibition of analog as in vitro studies presented significant reduction effect in the presence of unlabeled lipophilic compounds such as paeonol, imperatorin, diphenhydramine, pyrilamine, tramadol and ALC during the uptake of [3H]paeonol. In addition, the uptake significantly decreased and increased at the acidic and alkaline pH in both extracellular and intracellular study, respectively. In the presence of metabolic inhibitor, the uptake reduced significantly but not affected by sodium free or membrane potential disruption. Similarly, paeonol uptake was not affected on OCTN2 or rPMAT siRNA transfection BBB cells. Interestingly. Paeonol is actively transported from the blood to brain across the BBB by a carrier mediated transporter system.

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Nitrogen-containing heterocycles such as quinoline, quinazolinones and indole are scaffolds of natural products and have broad biological effects. During the last years those structures have been intensively synthesized and modified to yield new synthetic molecules that can specifically inhibit the activity of dysregulated protein kinases in cancer cells. Herein, a series of newly synthesized isoquinolinamine (FX-1 to 8) and isoindoloquinazolinone (FX-9, FX-42, FX-43) compounds were evaluated in regards to their anti-leukemic potential on human B- and T- acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) cells. Several biological effects were observed. B-ALL cells (SEM, RS4;11) were more sensitive against isoquinolinamine compounds than T-ALL cells (Jurkat, CEM). In SEM cells, metabolic activity decreased with 10 μM up to 26.7% (FX-3), 25.2% (FX-7) and 14.5% (FX-8). The 3-(p-Tolyl) isoquinolin-1-amine FX-9 was the most effective agent against B- and T-ALL cells with IC50 values ranging from 0.54 to 1.94 μM. None of the tested compounds displayed hemolysis on erythrocytes or cytotoxicity against healthy leukocytes. Anti-proliferative effect of FX-9 was associated with changes in cell morphology and apoptosis induction. Further, influence of FX-9 on PI3K/AKT, MAPK and JAK/STAT signaling was detected but was heterogeneous. Functional inhibition testing of 58 kinases revealed no specific inhibitory activity among cancer related kinases. In conclusion, FX-9 displays significant antileukemic activity in B- and T-ALL cells and should be further evaluated in regards to the mechanisms of action. Further compounds of the current series might serve as templates for the design of new compounds and as basic structures for modification approaches.

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Particulate matter (PM), which refers to the mixture of particles present in the air, can have harmful effects. Damage to cells by PM, including disruption of organelles and proteins, can trigger autophagy, and the relationship between autophagy and PM has been well studied. However, the cellular regulators of PM-induced autophagy have not been well characterized, especially in keratinocytes. The Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor (AhR) is expressed in the epidermis and is activated by PM. In this study, we investigated the role of the AhR in PM-induced autophagy in HaCaT cells. Our results showed that PM led to AhR activation in keratinocytes. Activation of the AhR-target gene CYP1A1 by PM was reduced by co-treatment with α-naphthoflavone (α-NF), an AhR inhibitor. We also evaluated activation of the autophagy pathway in PM-treated keratinocytes. In HaCaT cells, treatment with PM treatment led to the induction of microtubules-associated proteins light chain 3 (LC3) and p62/SQSTM1, which are essential components of the autophagy pathway. To study the role of the AhR in mediating PM-induced autophagy, we treated cells with α-NF or used an siRNA against AhR. Expression of LC3-ІІ induced by PM was decreased in a dose dependent manner by α-NF. Furthermore, knockdown of AhR with siAhR diminished PM-induced expression of LC3-ІІ and p62. Together, these results suggest that inhibition of the AhR decreases PM-induced autophagy. We confirmed these results using the autophagy-inhibitors BAF and 3-MA. Taken together, our results indicate that exposure to PM induces autophagy via the AhR in HaCaT keratinocytes.

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Sphingosine kinase 1 and its product, sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P), as well as their receptors, have been implicated in inflammatory responses. The functions of receptors S1P1 and S1P2 on cell motility have been investigated. However, the function of S1P3 has been poorly investigated. In this study, the roles of S1P3 on inflammatory response were investigated in primary peritoneal macrophages. S1P3 receptor was induced along with sphingosine kinase 1 by stimulation of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). LPS treatment induced inflammatory genes, such iNOS, COX-2, IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α. TY52156, an antagonist of S1P3 suppressed the induction of inflammatory genes in a concentration dependent manner. Suppression of iNOS and COX-2 induction was further confirmed by western blotting and NO measurement. Suppression of IL-1β induction was also confirmed by western blotting and ELISA. Caspase 1, which is responsible for IL-1β production, was similarly induced by LPS and suppressed by TY52156. Therefore, we have shown S1P3 induction in the inflammatory conditions and its pro-inflammatory roles. Targeting S1P3 might be a strategy for regulating inflammatory diseases.

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Taurine has a number of beneficial pharmacological actions in the brain such as anxiolytic and neuroprotective actions. We explored to test whether taurine could be transported to the central nervous system through the intranasal route. Following intranasal administration of taurine in mice, elevated plus maze test, activity cage test and rota rod test were carried out to verify taurine’s effect on anxiety. For the characterization of potential mechanism of taurine’s anti-anxiety action, mouse convulsion tests with strychnine, picrotoxin, yohimbine, and isoniazid were employed. A significant increase in the time spent in the open arms was observed when taurine was administered through the nasal route in the elevated plus maze test. In addition, vertical and horizontal activities of mice treated with taurine via intranasal route were considerably diminished. These results support the hypothesis that taurine can be transported to the brain through intranasal route, thereby inducing anti-anxiety activity. Taurine’s anti-anxiety action may be mediated by the strychnine-sensitive glycine receptor as evidenced by the inhibition of strychnine-induced convulsion.

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Angelica gigas has been used as a Korean traditional medicine for pain relief and gynecological health. Although the extracts are reported to have an anti-inflammatory property, the bioactive compounds of the herbal plant and the effect on T cell responses are unclear. In this study, we identified decursinol angelate (DA) as an immunomodulatory ingredient of A. gigas and demonstrated its suppressive effect on type 17 helper T (Th17) cell responses. Helper T cell culture experiments revealed that DA impeded the differentiation of Th17 cells and IL-17 production without affecting the survival and proliferation of CD4 T cells. By using a dextran sodium sulfate (DSS)-induced colitis model, we determined the therapeutic potential of DA for the treatment of ulcerative colitis. DA treatment attenuated the severity of colitis including a reduction in weight loss, colon shortening, and protection from colonic tissue damage induced by DSS administration. Intriguingly, Th17 cells concurrently with neutrophils in the colitis tissues were significantly decreased by the DA treatment. Overall, our experimental evidence reveals for the first time that DA is an anti-inflammatory compound to modulate inflammatory T cells, and suggests DA as a potential therapeutic agent to manage inflammatory conditions associated with Th17 cell responses.

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Atherosclerosis is a widespread and chronic progressive arterial disease that has been regarded as one of the major causes of death worldwide. It is caused by the deposition of cholesterol, fats, and other substances in the tunica intima which leads to narrowing of the blood vessels, loss of elasticity, and arterial wall thickening, thus causing difficulty in blood flow. Natural products have been used as one of the most important strategies for the treatment and prevention of cardiovascular diseases for a long time. In recent decades, as interests in natural products including medicinal herbs have increased, many studies regarding natural compounds that are effective against atherosclerosis have been conducted. The purpose of this review is to provide a brief overview of the natural compounds that have been used for the treatment and prevention of atherosclerosis, and their mechanisms of action based on recent research.

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Trypanosoma cruzi infection results in debilitating cardiomyopathy, which is a major cause of mortality and morbidity in the endemic regions of Chagas disease (CD). The pathogenesis of Chagasic cardiomyopathy (CCM) has been intensely studied as a chronic inflammatory disease until recent observations reporting the role of cardio-metabolic dysfunctions. In particular, we demonstrated accumulation of lipid droplets and impaired cardiac lipid metabolism in the hearts of cardiomyopathic mice and patients, and their association with impaired mitochondrial functions and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress in CD mice. In the present study, we examined whether treating infected mice with an ER stress inhibitor can modify the pathogenesis of cardiomyopathy during chronic stages of infection. T. cruzi infected mice were treated with an ER stress inhibitor 2-Aminopurine (2AP) during the indeterminate stage and evaluated for cardiac pathophysiology during the subsequent chronic stage. Our study demonstrates that inhibition of ER stress improves cardiac pathology caused by T. cruzi infection by reducing ER stress and downstream signaling of phosphorylated eukaryotic initiation factor (P-elF2α) in the hearts of chronically infected mice. Importantly, cardiac ultrasound imaging showed amelioration of ventricular enlargement, suggesting that inhibition of ER stress may be a valuable strategy to combat the progression of cardiomyopathy in Chagas patients.