Journal: BMC cell biology
Altered expression of mRNA splicing factors occurs with ageing in vivo and is thought to be an ageing mechanism. The accumulation of senescent cells also occurs in vivo with advancing age and causes much degenerative age-related pathology. However, the relationship between these two processes is opaque. Accordingly we developed a novel panel of small molecules based on resveratrol, previously suggested to alter mRNA splicing, to determine whether altered splicing factor expression had potential to influence features of replicative senescence.
Gap junctions facilitate exchange of small molecules between adjacent cells, serving a crucial function for the maintenance of cellular homeostasis. Mutations in connexins, the basic unit of gap junctions, are associated with several human hereditary disorders. For example, mutations in connexin26 (Cx26) cause both non-syndromic deafness and syndromic deafness associated with skin abnormalities such as keratitis-ichthyosis-deafness (KID) syndrome. These mutations can alter the formation and function of gap junction channels through different mechanisms, and in turn interfere with various cellular processes leading to distinct disorders. The KID associated Cx26 mutations were mostly shown to result in elevated hemichannel activities. However, the effects of these aberrant hemichannels on cellular processes are recently being deciphered. Here, we assessed the effect of two Cx26 mutations associated with KID syndrome, Cx26I30N and D50Y, on protein biosynthesis and channel function in N2A and HeLa cells.
In Drosophila early post-meiotic spermatids, mitochondria undergo dramatic shaping into the Nebenkern, a spherical body with complex internal structure that contains two interwrapped giant mitochondrial derivatives. The purpose of this study was to elucidate genetic and molecular mechanisms underlying the shaping of this structure.
DNA hypermethylation is a key epigenetic mechanism for the silencing of many genes in cancer. Hinokitiol, a tropolone-related natural compound, is known to induce apoptosis and cell cycle arrest and has anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor activities. However, the relationship between hinokitiol and DNA methylation is not clear. The aim of our study was to explore whether hinokitiol has an inhibitory ability on the DNA methylation in colon cancer cells.
Animals are exposed to a wide range of environmental stresses that can cause potentially fatal cellular damage. The ability to survive the period of stress as well as to repair any damage incurred is essential for fitness. Exposure to 2 °C for 24 h or longer is rapidly fatal to the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, but the process of recovery from a shorter, initially non-lethal, cold shock is poorly understood.
Environmental factors are important for stem cell lineage specification, and increasing evidence indicates that the nanoscale geometry/topography of the extracellular matrix (ECM) directs stem cell fate. Recently, many three-dimensional (3D) biomimetic nanofibrous scaffolds resembling many characteristics of the native ECM have been used in stem cell-based myocardial tissue engineering. However, the biophysical role and underlying mechanism of 3D nanofibrous scaffolds in cardiomyocyte differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) remain unclear.
BACKGROUND: The present review summarizes current knowledge about microparticles (MPs) and provides a systematic overview of last 20 years of research on circulating MPs, with particular focus on their clinical relevance. RESULTS: MPs are a heterogeneous population of cell-derived vesicles, with sizes ranging between 50 and 1000 nm. MPs are capable of transferring peptides, proteins, lipid components, microRNA, mRNA, and DNA from one cell to another without direct cell-to-cell contact. Growing evidence suggests that MPs present in peripheral blood and body fluids contribute to the development and progression of cancer, and are of pathophysiological relevance for autoimmune, inflammatory, infectious, cardiovascular, hematological, and other diseases. MPs have large diagnostic potential as biomarkers; however, due to current technological limitations in purification of MPs and an absence of standardized methods of MP detection, challenges remain in validating the potential of MPs as a non-invasive and early diagnostic platform. CONCLUSIONS: Improvements in the effective deciphering of MP molecular signatures will be critical not only for diagnostics but also for the evaluation of treatment regimens and predicting disease outcomes.
Generalized methods for understanding the cell biology of non-model species are quite rare, yet very much needed. In order to address this issue, we have modified a technique traditionally used in the biomedical field for ecological and evolutionary research. Fluorescent activated cell sorting (FACS) is often used for sorting and identifying cell populations. In this study, we developed a method to identify and isolate different cell populations in corals and other cnidarians.
Environmental stress can affect the viability or fecundity of an organism. Environmental stressors may affect the genome or the proteome and can cause cellular distress by contributing to protein damage or misfolding. This study examines the cellular response to environmental stress in the germline of the nematode, C. elegans.
Genomes of eukaryotes exist as chromatin, and it is known that different chromatin states can influence gene regulation. Chromatin is not a static structure, but is known to be dynamic and vary between cells. In order to monitor the organisation of chromatin in live cells we have engineered fluorescent fusion proteins which recognize specific operator sequences to tag pairs of syntenic gene loci. The separation of these loci was then tracked in three dimensions over time using fluorescence microscopy.