Aldosterone stimulates sodium transport in the renal collecting duct by activating the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC). To investigate the basis of this effect, we have developed a novel set of rabbit polyclonal antibodies to the 3 subunits of ENaC and have determined the abundance and distribution of ENaC subunits in the principal cells of the rat renal collecting duct. Elevated circulating aldosterone (due to either dietary NaCl restriction or aldosterone infusion) markedly increased the abundance of αENaC protein without increasing the abundance of the β and γ subunits. Thus, αENaC is selectively induced by aldosterone. In addition, immunofluorescence immunolocalization showed a striking redistribution in ENaC labeling to the apical region of the collecting duct principal cells. Finally, aldosterone induced a shift in molecular weight of γENaC from 85 kDa to 70 kDa, consistent with physiological proteolytic clipping of the extracellular loop as postulated previously. Thus, at the protein level, the response of ENaC to aldosterone stimulation is heterogenous, with both quantitative and qualitative changes that can explain observed increases in ENaC-mediated sodium transport.
Shyama Masilamani, Gheun-Ho Kim, Carter Mitchell, James B. Wade, Mark A. Knepper
Hair follicles form in prenatal skin and mature in the postnatal period, establishing a growth cycle in 3 phases: telogen (resting), anagen (growth), and catagen (regression). Based on the knowledge that Sonic hedgehog (Shh) expression is necessary for the embryonic development of hair follicles, and that anagen in the postnatal cycling follicle has morphologic similarities to the epithelial invagination process in embryonic skin, we hypothesized that localized, but transient, enhanced expression of the Shh gene in postnatal skin would accelerate initiation of anagen in the hair follicle cycle, with concomitant accelerated hair growth. To assess this concept, an E1– adenovirus vector, AdShh, was used to transfer the murine Shh cDNA to skin of postnatal day 19 C57BL/6 mice. The treated skin showed increased mRNA expression of Shh, Patched (the Shh receptor), and Gli1 (a transcription factor in the Shh pathway). In mice receiving AdShh, but not in controls, acceleration into anagen was evident, since hair follicle size and melanogenesis increased and the hair-specific keratin ghHb-1 and the melanin synthesis–related tyrosinase mRNAs accumulated. Finally, C57BL/6 mice showed marked acceleration of the onset of new hair growth in the region of AdShh administration to skin 2 weeks after treatment, but not in control vector–treated or untreated areas. After 6 months, AdShh-treated skin showed normal hair and normal skin morphology. Together, these observations are consistent with the concept that upregulation of Shh activity in postnatal skin functions as a biologic switch that induces resting hair follicles to enter anagen with consequent hair growth.
Noboru Sato, Philip L. Leopold, Ronald G. Crystal
The majority of thyroid carcinomas maintain the expression of the cell growth suppressor p27, an inhibitor of cyclin-dependent kinase-2 (Cdk2). However, we find that 80% of p27-expressing tumors show an uncommon cytoplasmic localization of p27 protein, associated with high Cdk2 activity. To reproduce such a situation, a mutant p27 devoid of its COOH-terminal nuclear-localization signal was generated (p27-NLS). p27-NLS accumulates in the cytoplasm and fails to induce growth arrest in 2 different cell lines, indicating that cytoplasm-residing p27 is inactive as a growth inhibitor, presumably because it does not interact with nuclear Cdk2. Overexpression of cyclin D3 may account in part for p27 cytoplasmic localization. In thyroid tumors and cell lines, cyclin D3 expression was associated with cytoplasmic localization of p27. Moreover, expression of cyclin D3 in thyroid carcinoma cells induced cytoplasmic retention of cotransfected p27 and rescued p27-imposed growth arrest. Endogenous p27 also localized prevalently to the cytoplasm in normal thyrocytes engineered to stably overexpress cyclin D3 (PC-D3 cells). In these cells, cyclin D3 induced the formation of cytoplasmic p27–cyclin D3–Cdk complexes, which titrated p27 away from intranuclear complexes that contain cyclins A–E and Cdk2. Our results demonstrate a novel mechanism that may contribute to overcoming the p27 inhibitory threshold in transformed thyroid cells.
Gustavo Baldassarre, Barbara Belletti, Paola Bruni, Angelo Boccia, Francesco Trapasso, Francesca Pentimalli, Maria Vittoria Barone, Gennaro Chiappetta, Maria Teresa Vento, Stefania Spiezia, Alfredo Fusco, Giuseppe Viglietto
P2X purinergic receptor (P2XR) channels bind ATP and mediate Ca2+ influx — 2 signals that stimulate secretory Cl– transport across epithelia. We tested the hypotheses that P2XR channels are expressed by epithelia and that P2XRs transduce extracellular ATP signals into stimulation of Cl– transport across epithelia. Electrophysiological data and mRNA analysis of human and mouse pulmonary epithelia and other epithelial cells indicate that multiple P2XRs are broadly expressed in these tissues and that they are active on both apical and basolateral surfaces. Because P2X-selective agonists bind multiple P2XR subtypes, and because P2X agonists stimulate Cl– transport across nasal mucosa of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients as well as across non-CF nasal mucosa, P2XRs may provide novel targets for extracellular nucleotide therapy of CF.
Amanda L. Taylor, Lisa M. Schwiebert, Jeffrey J. Smith, Chris King, Julie R. Jones, Eric J. Sorscher, Erik M. Schwiebert
Neutrophil-borne heparin-binding protein (HBP) is a multifunctional protein involved in the progression of inflammation. HBP is stored in neutrophil granules and released upon stimulation of the cells in proximity to endothelial cells. HBP affects endothelial cells in multiple ways; however, the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the interaction of HBP with these cells are unknown. Affinity isolation and enzymatic degradation demonstrated that HBP released from human neutrophils binds to endothelial cell-surface proteoglycans, such as syndecans and glypican. Flow cytometry indicated that a significant fraction of proteoglycan-bound HBP is taken up by the endothelial cells, and we used radiolabeled HBP to determine the internalization rate of surface-bound HBP. Confocal and electron microscopy revealed that internalized HBP is targeted to perinuclear compartments of endothelial cells, where it colocalizes with mitochondria. Western blotting of isolated mitochondria from HBP-treated endothelial cells showed that HBP is present in 2 forms — 28 and 22 kDa. Internalized HBP markedly reduced growth factor deprivation–induced caspase-3 activation and protected endothelial cells from apoptosis, suggesting that uptake and intracellular routing of exogenous HBP to mitochondria contributes to the sustained viability of endothelial cells in the context of locally activated neutrophils.
A. Maria Olofsson, Mikael Vestberg, Heiko Herwald, Jørgen Rygaard, Guido David, Karl-E. Arfors, Viggo Linde, Hans Flodgaard, Jürgen Dedio, Werner Müller-Esterl, Evy Lundgren-Åkerlund
Ovariectomy in young, growing rodents results in decreased trabecular bone mineral density (BMD) and increased radial growth of the cortical bone. Both of these effects are reversed by treatment with estrogen. The aim of the present study was to determine the physiological role of estrogen receptor-β (ERβ) on bone structure and bone mineral content (BMC). The BMC was increased in adult (11 weeks old), but not prepubertal (4 weeks old), female ERβ–/– mice compared with wild-type (WT) mice. This increase in BMC in females was not due to increased trabecular BMD, but to an increased cross-sectional cortical bone area associated with a radial bone growth. Male ERβ–/– mice displayed no bone abnormalities compared with WT mice. Ovariectomy decreased the trabecular BMD to the same extent in adult female ERβ–/– mice as in WT mice. The expression levels of osteoblast-associated genes — α1(I) collagen, alkaline phosphatase, and osteocalcin mRNAs — were elevated in bone from adult ERβ–/– females compared with WT mice. These observations provide a possible explanation for the increased radial bone growth seen in female mutants, suggesting a repressive function for ERβ in the regulation of bone growth during female adolescence. In summary, ERβ is essential for the pubertal feminization of the cortical bone in female mice but is not required for the protective effect of estrogens on trabecular BMD.
S.H. Windahl, O. Vidal, G. Andersson, J.A. Gustafsson, C. Ohlsson
The MHC class I–related Fc receptor, FcRn, mediates the intestinal absorption of maternal IgG in neonatal rodents and the transplacental transport of maternal IgG in humans by receptor-mediated transcytosis. In mice and rats, expression of FcRn in intestinal epithelial cells is limited to the suckling period. We have recently observed, however, clear expression of FcRn in the adult human intestine, suggesting a function for FcRn in intestinal IgG transport beyond neonatal life in humans. We tested this hypothesis using the polarized human intestinal T84 cell line as a model epithelium. Immunocytochemical data show that FcRn is present in T84 cells in a punctate apical pattern similar to that found in human small intestinal enterocytes. Solute flux studies show that FcRn transports IgG across T84 monolayers by receptor-mediated transcytosis. Transport is bidirectional, specific for FcRn, and dependent upon endosomal acidification. These data define a novel bidirectional mechanism of IgG transport across epithelial barriers that predicts an important effect of FcRn on IgG function in immune surveillance and host defense at mucosal surfaces.
Bonny L. Dickinson, Kamran Badizadegan, Zhen Wu, Jeremy C. Ahouse, Xiaoping Zhu, Neil E. Simister, Richard S. Blumberg, Wayne I. Lencer
VEGF165, the most abundant isoform in man, is an angiogenic cytokine that also regulates vascular permeability. Its function in the renal glomerulus, where it is expressed in visceral epithelial and mesangial cells, is unknown. To assess the role of VEGF165 in glomerular disease, we administered a novel antagonist — a high-affinity, nuclease-resistant RNA aptamer coupled to 40-kDa polyethylene glycol (PEG) — to normal rats and to rats with mesangioproliferative nephritis, passive Heymann nephritis (PHN), or puromycin aminonucleoside nephrosis (PAN). In normal rats, antagonism of VEGF165 for 21 days failed to induce glomerular pathology or proteinuria. In rats with mesangioproliferative nephritis, the VEGF165 aptamer (but not a sequence-scrambled control RNA or PEG alone) led to a reduction of glomerular endothelial regeneration and an increase in endothelial cell death, provoking an 8-fold increase in the frequency of glomerular microaneurysms by day 6. In contrast, early leukocyte influx and the proliferation, activation, and matrix accumulation of mesangial cells were not affected in these rats. In rats with PHN or PAN, administration of the VEGF165 aptamer did not influence the course of proteinuria using various dosages and administration routes. These data identify VEGF165 as a factor of central importance for endothelial cell survival and repair in glomerular disease, and point to a potentially novel way to influence the course of glomerular diseases characterized by endothelial cell damage, such as various glomerulonephritides, thrombotic microangiopathies, or renal transplant rejection.
Tammo Ostendorf, Uta Kunter, Frank Eitner, Anneke Loos, Heinz Regele, Dontscho Kerjaschki, Dwight D. Henninger, Nebojsa Janjic, Jürgen Floege
Angiotensin II (Ang II) is a potent vasopressor peptide that interacts with 2 major receptor isoforms — AT1 and AT2. Although blood pressure is increased in AT2 knockout mice, the underlying mechanisms remain undefined because of the low levels of expression of AT2 in the vasculature. Here we overexpressed AT2 in vascular smooth muscle (VSM) cells in transgenic (TG) mice. Aortic AT1 was not affected by overexpression of AT2. Chronic infusion of Ang II into AT2-TG mice completely abolished the AT1-mediated pressor effect, which was blocked by inhibitors of bradykinin type 2 receptor (icatibant) and nitric oxide (NO) synthase (L-NAME). Aortic explants from TG mice showed greatly increased cGMP production and diminished Ang II–induced vascular constriction. Removal of endothelium or treatment with icatibant and L-NAME abolished these AT2-mediated effects. AT2 blocked the amiloride-sensitive Na+/H+ exchanger, promoting intracellular acidosis in VSM cells and activating kininogenases. The resulting enhancement of aortic kinin formation in TG mice was not affected by removal of endothelium. Our results suggest that AT2 in aortic VSM cells stimulates the production of bradykinin, which stimulates the NO/cGMP system in a paracrine manner to promote vasodilation. Selective stimulation of AT2 in the presence of AT1 antagonists is predicted to have a beneficial clinical effect in controlling blood pressure.
Yoshiaki Tsutsumi, Hiroaki Matsubara, Hiroya Masaki, Hiroki Kurihara, Satoshi Murasawa, Shinji Takai, Mizuo Miyazaki, Yoshihisa Nozawa, Ryoji Ozono, Keigo Nakagawa, Takeshi Miwa, Noritaka Kawada, Yasukiyo Mori, Yasunobu Shibasaki, Yohko Tanaka, Soichiro Fujiyama, Yohko Koyama, Atsuko Fujiyama, Hakuo Takahashi, Toshiji Iwasaka
Nitric oxide (NO) inhalation has been reported to increase the oxygen affinity of sickle cell erythrocytes. Also, proposed allosteric mechanisms for hemoglobin, based on S-nitrosation of β-chain cysteine 93, raise the possibilty of altering the pathophysiology of sickle cell disease by inhibiting polymerization or by increasing NO delivery to the tissue. We studied the effects of a 2-hour treatment, using varying concentrations of inhaled NO. Oxygen affinity, as measured by P50, did not respond to inhaled NO, either in controls or in individuals with sickle cell disease. At baseline, the arterial and venous levels of nitrosylated hemoglobin were not significantly different, but NO inhalation led to a dose-dependent increase in mean nitrosylated hemoglobin, and at the highest dosage, a significant arterial-venous difference emerged. The levels of nitrosylated hemoglobin are too low to affect overall hemoglobin oxygen affinity, but augmented NO transport to the microvasculature seems a promising strategy for improving microvascular perfusion.
Mark T. Gladwin, Alan N. Schechter, James H. Shelhamer, Lewis K. Pannell, Deirdre A. Conway, Borys W. Hrinczenko, James S. Nichols, Margaret E. Pease-Fye, Constance T. Noguchi, Griffin P. Rodgers, Frederick P. Ognibene
We found that the plasma of patients with active systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) could induce a human B-cell line (Ramos) to express high levels of immune accessory molecules that are commonly found on blood B cells of patients with active SLE. The ability of SLE plasma to induce such phenotypic changes could be abrogated by neutralizing antibodies specific for the CD40 ligand (CD154) but not by antibodies to TNF-α. Immunoprecipitation studies with anti-CD154 identified a 20-kDa protein in the plasma of SLE patients with active disease, but not in plasma of normal donors, indicating that such plasma contained soluble CD154 (sCD154). Using a quantitative ELISA method, we found that the plasma of patients with active disease had levels of sCD154 that were significantly higher than those found in plasma of normal donors. Levels of CD154 transcripts in SLE blood lymphocytes correlated with the relative concentrations of sCD154 found in SLE plasma. Furthermore, plasma levels of sCD154 correlated with the titers of anti–double-stranded DNA autoantibody and with clinical disease activity. These studies indicate that sCD154 of patients with SLE may act as a functional ligand for CD40 that is associated with SLE disease activity.
Kazunori Kato, Ernesto Santana-Sahagún, Laura Z. Rassenti, Michael H. Weisman, Naoto Tamura, Shigeto Kobayashi, Hiroshi Hashimoto, Thomas J. Kipps
Human rhinoviruses (HRVs) are the predominant cause of the common cold. Although this disease is per se rather harmless, HRV infection is considered to set the stage for more dangerous pathogens in vivo. Here we demonstrate that HRV-14, a member of the major group HRV family, can efficiently inhibit antigen-induced T-cell proliferation and T-cell responses to allogeneic monocytes. HRV-14 triggered a significant downregulation of MHC class II molecules on monocytes. Moreover, supernatants from monocytes cultured in the presence of HRV-14 strongly reduced the allogeneic T-cell stimulatory property of untreated monocytes and monocyte-derived dendritic cells (md-DCs), whereas Epstein Barr virus–transformed B-lymphoblastoid cells were not sensitive. Analysis of the supernatant revealed that HRV-14 induced the production of significant amounts of the immunosuppressive cytokine IL-10. The important T-cell stimulatory cytokine IL-12 or the proinflammatory cytokines IL-1β or TNF-α were not detected or were only minimally detected. Finally, monocytes pretreated with HRV-14 were greatly inhibited in their production of IL-12 upon stimulation with IFN-γ/LPS. These observations suggest that altered cytokine production in mononuclear phagocytes upon interaction with HRV downmodulates appropriate immune responses during the viral infection.
Johannes Stöckl, Helga Vetr, Otto Majdic, Gerhard Zlabinger, Ernst Kuechler, Walter Knapp
The autosomal recessive form of type I pseudohypoaldosteronism (PHA-I) is an inherited salt-losing syndrome resulting from diminution-of-function mutations in the 3 subunits of the epithelial Na+ channel (ENaC). A PHA-I stop mutation (αR508stop) of the ENaC α subunit is predicted to lack the second transmembrane domain and the intracellular COOH-terminus, regions of the protein involved in pore function. Nonetheless, we observed a measurable Na+ current in Xenopus laevis oocytes that coexpress the β and γ subunits with the truncated α subunit. The mutant α was coassembled with β and γ subunits and was present at the cell surface at a lower density, consistent with the lower Na+ current seen in oocytes with the truncated α subunit. The single-channel Na+ conductance for the mutant channel was only slightly decreased, and the appearance of the macroscopic currents was delayed by 48 hours with respect to wild-type. Our data suggest novel roles for the α subunit in the assembly and targeting of an active channel to the cell surface, and suggest that channel pores consisting of only the β and γ subunits can provide significant residual activity. This activity may be sufficient to explain the absence of a severe pulmonary phenotype in patients with PHA-I.
Olivier Bonny, Ahmed Chraibi, Jan Loffing, Nicole Fowler Jaeger, Stefan Gründer, Jean-Daniel Horisberger, Bernard C. Rossier
Leptin administration inhibits diencephalic nitric oxide synthase (NOS) activity and increases brain serotonin (5-HT) metabolism in mice. We evaluated food intake, body-weight gain, diencephalic NOS activity, and diencephalic content of tryptophan (TRP), 5-HT, hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), and 5-HIAA/5-HT ratio after intracerebroventricular (ICV) or intraperitoneal (IP) leptin injection in mice. Five consecutive days of ICV or IP leptin injections induced a significant reduction in neuronal NOS (nNOS) activity, and caused a dose-dependent increase of 5-HT, 5-HIAA, and the 5-HIAA/5-HT ratio. Diencephalic 5-HT metabolism showed a significant increase in 5-HT, 5-HIAA, and the 5-HIAA/5-HT ratio 3 hours after a single leptin injection. This effect was maintained for 3 hours and had disappeared by 12 hours after injection. After a single IP leptin injection, the peak for 5-HT, 5-HIAA, and the 5-HIAA/5-HT ratio was achieved at 6 hours. Single injections of ICV or IP leptin significantly increased diencephalic 5-HT content. Leptin-induced 5-HT increase was antagonized by the coadministration of L-arginine only when the latter was ICV injected, whereas D-arginine did not influence leptin effects on brain 5-HT content. Finally, in nNOS-knockout mice, the appetite-suppressant activity of leptin was strongly reduced, and the leptin-induced increase in brain 5-HT metabolism was completely abolished. Our results indicate that the L-arginine/NO pathway is involved in mediating leptin effects on feeding behavior, and demonstrate that nNOS activity is required for the effects of leptin on brain 5-HT turnover.
Gioacchino Calapai, Francesco Corica, Andrea Corsonello, Lidia Sautebin, Massimo Di Rosa, Giuseppe M. Campo, Michele Buemi, Vittorio Nicita Mauro, Achille P. Caputi
Hans C. Oettgen, Raif S. Geha