The amino acid motif QKRAA, when expressed on HLA-DRB1, carries susceptibility to develop rheumatoid arthritis. This motif is the basis of strong B and T cell epitopes. Furthermore, it is highly overrepresented in protein databases, suggesting that it carries a function of its own. To identify this function, we used QKRAA peptide affinity columns to screen total protein extracts from Escherichia coli. We found that DnaK, the E. coli 70-kD heat shock protein, binds QKRAA. Of interest, DnaK has a natural ligand, DnaJ, that contains a QKRAA motif. We found that QKRAA-containing peptides inhibit the binding of DnaK to DnaJ. Furthermore, rabbit antibody to the QKRAA motif can inhibit binding of DnaJ to DnaK. These data suggest that QKRAA mediates the binding of E. coli chaperone DnaJ to its partner chaperone DnaK.
I Auger, J Roudier
Yersinia pseudotuberculosis is an enteric pathogen that causes a variety of clinical symptoms in the human. Recently, we reported the production of a superantigen (Y. pseudotuberculosis-derived mitogen, YPM) by this organism and characterized the gene structure of ypm. To further study the potential pathogenic role of YPM in Y. pseudotuberculosis infection, we assayed IgG anti-YPM antibodies and T cell antigen receptor-Vbeta expression of the T cells in peripheral blood and in mesenteric lymph node in patients acutely infected with Y. pseudotuberculosis. 20 out of 33 patients (61%) had an elevated antibody titer compared with healthy controls (P = 0.0001). Patients with systemic symptoms such as lymphadenopathy, transient renal dysfunction, and arthritis had significantly higher titers of anti-YPM than patients with gastrointestinal tract symptoms alone. T cells bearing the Vbeta3 gene segment were significantly increased (P = 0.009) among acute phase patients compared with healthy children. During the convalescence phase of the illness, there was a reduction in the abnormal level of Vbeta3 T cells. Moreover, in the mesenteric lymph node, an elevated level of Vbeta3 T cells compared with peripheral blood and a sequence diversity in the junctional region of the T cell antigen receptor beta-chain containing Vbeta3 element was observed in one patient. Together, these findings suggest that YPM was produced in vivo and played an important role in the pathogenesis of Y. pseudotuberculosis infection.
J Abe, M Onimaru, S Matsumoto, S Noma, K Baba, Y Ito, T Kohsaka, T Takeda
Our laboratory has previously demonstrated that 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25[OH]2D3) rapidly stimulated polyphosphoinositide (PI) hydrolysis, raised intracellular Ca2+, and activated two Ca2+-dependent protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms, PKC-alpha and -betaII in the rat large intestine. We also showed that the direct addition of 1,25(OH)2D3 to isolated colonic membranes failed to stimulate PI hydrolysis, but required secosteroid treatment of intact colonocytes, suggesting the involvement of a soluble factor. Furthermore, this PI hydrolysis was restricted to the basal lateral plasma membrane of these cells. In the present studies, therefore, we examined whether polyphosphoinositide-phospholipase C-gamma (PI-PLC-gamma), a predominantly cytosolic isoform of PI-PLC, was involved in the hydrolysis of colonic membrane PI by 1,25(OH)2D3. This isoform has been shown to be activated and membrane-associated by tyrosine phosphorylation. We found that 1,25(OH)2D3 caused a significant increase in the biochemical activity, particulate association, and the tyrosine phosphorylation of PLC-gamma, specifically in the basal lateral membranes. This secosteroid also induced a twofold increase in the activity of Src, a proximate activator of PLC-gamma in other cells, with peaks at 1 and 9 min in association with Src tyrosine dephosphorylation. 1,25(OH)2D3 also increased the physical association of activated c-Src with PLC-gamma. In addition, Src isolated from colonocytes treated with 1,25(OH)2D3, demonstrated an increased ability to phosphorylate exogenous PLC-gamma in vitro. Inhibition of 1,25(OH)2D3-induced Src activation by PP1, a specific Src family protein tyrosine kinase inhibitor, blocked the ability of this secosteroid to stimulate the translocation and tyrosine phosphorylation of PLC-gamma in the basolateral membrane (BLM). Src activation was lost in D deficiency, and was reversibly restored with the in vivo repletion of 1,25(OH)2D3. These studies demonstrate for the first time that 1,25(OH)2D3 stimulates PLC-gamma as well as c-Src in rat colonocytes, and indicate that PLC-gamma is a direct substrate of secosteroid-activated c-Src in these cells.
S Khare, M J Bolt, R K Wali, S F Skarosi, H K Roy, S Niedziela, B Scaglione-Sewell, B Aquino, C Abraham, M D Sitrin, T A Brasitus, M Bissonnette
Gastric surface mucous cells originate from progenitor cells at the isthmus of the gastric gland, from where the cells migrate to the luminal surface. With migration they form secretory granules and express TGF alpha. We found that proprotein-processing endoprotease furin-positive cells were layered around the upper one fourth of the gastric glands of adult rats, whereas they were distributed along an outer epithelial layer in fetal rats. Because the furin-positive cell layer was localized from the upper cell proliferating zone to the less proliferating pit-cell region in the gastric gland unit, we examined the role of furin in the growth and differentiation of surface mucous cells by using the cell line, GSM06. This cell line is derived from the gastric surface mucous cells of transgenic mice harboring the temperature-sensitive simian virus 40 T antigen. At T antigen-active temperature (33 degrees C), the cells grew to confluency, whereas at T antigen-inactive temperature (39 degrees C), the cells ceased growing. At 33 degrees C, the cells exhibited a high level of furin expression with a negligible level of periodic acid Schiff (PAS)-positive materials and a low level of TGF alpha. In contrast, at 39 degrees C the cells produced a high level of PAS-positive materials, TGF alpha, and secretory granules, with a negligible level of furin expression. To further examine the role of furin, we established a GSM06 cell line introduced with either a sense or an antisense furin cDNA. The cells with sense furin expression produced fewer PAS-positive materials and a low level of TGF alpha even at 39 degrees C, whereas the cells with antisense furin expression exhibited more PAS-positive materials and TGF alpha even at 33 degrees C. When furin expression was suppressed by its antisense oligonucleotide, the cell growth was retarded with enhanced expression of the differentiated characteristics. Thus, we conclude that furin is instrumental in controlling the growth of the surface mucous cells.
Y Konda, H Yokota, T Kayo, T Horiuchi, N Sugiyama, S Tanaka, K Takata, T Takeuchi
The purpose of this study was to investigate whether escape from vasopressin-induced antidiuresis is associated with altered regulation of any of the known aquaporin water channels. After 4-d pretreatment with 1-deamino-[8-D-arginine]-vasopressin (dDAVP) by osmotic mini-pump, rats were divided into two groups: control (continued dDAVP) and water-loaded (continued dDAVP plus a daily oral water load). A significant increase in urine volume in the water-loaded rats was observed by the second day of water loading, indicating onset of vasopressin escape. The onset of escape coincided temporally with a marked decrease in renal aquaporin-2 protein (measured by semiquantitative immunoblotting), which began at day 2 and fell to 17% of control levels by day 3. In contrast, there was no decrease in the renal expression of aquaporins 1, 3, or 4. The marked suppression of whole kidney aquaporin-2 protein was accompanied by a concomitant suppression of whole kidney aquaporin-2 mRNA levels. Immunocytochemical localization and differential centrifugation studies demonstrated that trafficking of aquaporin-2 to the plasma membrane remained intact during vasopressin escape. The results suggest that escape from vasopressin-induced antidiuresis is attributable, at least in part, to a vasopressin-independent decrease in aquaporin-2 water channel expression in the renal collecting duct.
C A Ecelbarger, S Nielsen, B R Olson, T Murase, E A Baker, M A Knepper, J G Verbalis
Large amounts of type II-secreted phospholipase A2 (type II sPLA2) are secreted into inflammatory synovial fluid and they are believed to induce the synthesis of lipid mediators by articular chondrocytes. Preliminary experiments showed that insulin-like growth factor-I, which counteracts cartilage degradation in arthritis, inhibits interleukin-1beta-induced type II sPLA2 gene expression in rabbit articular chondrocytes (Berenbaum, F., G. Thomas, S. Poiraudeau, G. Bereziat, M.T. Corvol, and J. Masliah. 1994. FEBS Lett. 340: 51-55). The present study showed that IL-1beta induced the sustained synthesis of prostaglandin E2 and a parallel increase in type II sPLA2 gene expression (assessed by enzymatic activity and Northern blot analysis), but no increase in cytosolic PLA2 gene expression (assessed by Northern and Western blot analysis) or cytosolic PLA2 activity in rabbit articular chondrocytes. IGF-I inhibited both IL-1beta-stimulated PGE2 synthesis and type II sPLA2 gene expression, but had no effect on cytosolic PLA2 gene expression. Nuclear run-on experiments revealed that IL-1beta stimulated the transcription rate of type II sPLA2 gene, giving rise to long-lived mRNA in cells treated with actinomycin D. IGF-I did not affect transcription rate, suggesting that it acts as a post-transcriptional step. Sucrose density gradient analysis of the translation step showed no effect of IGF-I on the entry of type II sPLA2 mRNA into the polysomal pool or on its distribution into the various polysomal complexes, suggesting that IGF-I does not act on the translation of the mRNA. Lastly, IGF-I strongly decreased the half-life of IL-1beta-induced type II sPLA2 mRNA (from 92 to 12 h), suggesting that IGF-I destabilizes mRNA. These data demonstrate that IL-1beta stimulates the transcription rate of the type II sPLA2 gene and gives rise to a very stable mRNA. In contrast, IGF-I decreases the half-life of the type II sPLA2 message.
C Jacques, G Béréziat, L Humbert, J L Olivier, M T Corvol, J Masliah, F Berenbaum
Increased vascular resistance in essential hypertension occurs mainly in microvessels with luminal diameters < 100 microm. It is not known whether abnormalities in these vessels are a cause or consequence of high blood pressure (BP). We studied 105 men (aged 23-33 yr) in whom predisposition to high blood pressure has been characterized by both their own BP and those of their parents. Factors that are secondary to high BP correlate with offspring BP irrespective of parental BP, but factors that are components of the familial predisposition to high BP are more closely associated with higher BP in offspring whose parents also have high BP. Offspring with high BP whose parents also have high BP had impaired dermal vasodilatation in the forearm following ischemia and heating (289+/-27 [n = 25] versus 529+/-40 [n = 26], 476+/-38 [n = 30], and 539+/-41 flux units [n = 24] in other groups; P < 0.0001) and fewer capillaries on the dorsum of the finger (23+/-0.8 capillaries/0.25 mm2 versus 26+/-0.8 in all other groups; P < 0.003). Except for BP, other hemodynamic indices (including cardiac output and forearm vascular resistance) were not different. The dermal vessels of men who express a familial predisposition to high BP exhibit increased minimum resistance and capillary rarefaction. Defective angiogenesis may be an etiological component in the inheritance of high BP.
J P Noon, B R Walker, D J Webb, A C Shore, D W Holton, H V Edwards, G C Watt
Primary bile acid malabsorption (PBAM) is an idiopathic intestinal disorder associated with congenital diarrhea, steatorrhea, interruption of the enterohepatic circulation of bile acids, and reduced plasma cholesterol levels. The molecular basis of PBAM is unknown, and several conflicting mechanisms have been postulated. In this study, we cloned the human ileal Na+/bile acid cotransporter gene (SLC10A2) and employed single-stranded conformation polymorphism analysis to screen for PBAM-associated mutations. Four polymorphisms were identified and sequenced in a family with congenital PBAM. One allele encoded an A171S missense mutation and a mutated donor splice site for exon 3. The other allele encoded two missense mutations at conserved amino acid positions, L243P and T262M. In transfected COS cells, the L243P, T262M, and double mutant (L243P/T262M) did not affect transporter protein expression or trafficking to the plasma membrane; however, transport of taurocholate and other bile acids was abolished. In contrast, the A171S mutation had no effect on taurocholate uptake. The dysfunctional mutations were not detected in 104 unaffected control subjects, whereas the A171S was present in 28% of that population. These findings establish that SLC10A2 mutations can cause PBAM and underscore the ileal Na+/bile acid cotransporter's role in intestinal reclamation of bile acids.
P Oelkers, L C Kirby, J E Heubi, P A Dawson
A side effect of therapy with procainamide and numerous other medications is a lupus-like syndrome characterized by autoantibodies directed against denatured DNA and the (H2A-H2B)-DNA subunit of chromatin. We tested the possibility that an effect of lupus-inducing drugs on central T cell tolerance underlies these phenomena. Two intrathymic injections of procainamide-hydroxylamine (PAHA), a reactive metabolite of procainamide, resulted in prompt production of IgM antidenatured DNA antibodies in C57BL/6xDBA/2 F1 mice. Subsequently, IgG antichromatin antibodies began to appear in the serum 3 wk after the second injection and were sustained for several months. Specificity, inhibition and blocking studies demonstrated that the PAHA-induced antibodies showed remarkable specificity to the (H2A-H2B)-DNA complex. No evidence for polyclonal B cell activation could be detected based on enumeration of Ig-secreting B cells and serum Ig levels, suggesting that a clonally restricted autoimmune response was induced by intrathymic PAHA. The IgG isotype of the antichromatin antibodies indicated involvement of T cell help, and proliferative responses of splenocytes to oligonucleosomes increased up to 100-fold. As little as 5 microM PAHA led to a 10-fold T cell proliferative response to chromatin in short term organ culture of neonatal thymi. We suggest that PAHA interferes with self-tolerance mechanisms accompanying T cell maturation in the thymus, resulting in the emergence of chromatin-reactive T cells followed by humoral autoimmunity.
A Kretz-Rommel, S R Duncan, R L Rubin
Mutations in the arginine vasopressin (AVP) gene cause autosomal dominant familial neurohypophyseal diabetes insipidus (FNDI). The dominant inheritance pattern has been postulated to reflect neuronal toxicity of the mutant proteins, but the mechanism for such cytotoxicity is unknown. In this study, wild-type or several different mutant AVP genes were stably expressed in neuro2A neuroblastoma cells. When cells were treated with valproic acid to induce neuronal differentiation, each of the mutants caused reduced viability. Metabolic labeling revealed diminished intracellular trafficking of mutant AVP precursors and confirmed inefficient secretion of immunoreactive AVP. Immunofluorescence studies demonstrated marked accumulation of mutant AVP precursors within the endoplasmic reticulum. These studies suggest that the cellular toxicity in FNDI may be caused by the intracellular accumulation of mutant precursor proteins.
M Ito, J L Jameson, M Ito
Transgenic mouse lines carrying several copies of the mouse apo A-IV gene were produced. Lipoprotein composition and function, and aortic lesion development were examined. Apo A-IV levels in the plasma of transgenic mice were elevated threefold compared with nontransgenic littermates on a chow diet, and sixfold in mice fed an atherogenic diet. Plasma concentrations of total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and free fatty acids were similar in transgenic and control mice fed a chow diet. However, with the atherogenic diet, male transgenic mice exhibited significantly higher levels of plasma triglycerides (P < 0.05), total cholesterol (P < 0.01), HDL cholesterol (P < 0.0001), and free fatty acids (P < 0.05), and lower levels of unesterified cholesterol (P < 0.05), than nontransgenic littermates. Expression of the apo A-IV transgene had a protective effect against the formation of diet-induced aortic lesions, with transgenics exhibiting lesion scores of approximately 30% those seen in control mice. HDL-sized lipoproteins isolated from transgenic mice fed the atherogenic diet promoted cholesterol efflux from cholesterol-loaded human monocytes more efficiently than comparable lipoproteins from nontransgenic counterparts. Plasma from transgenics also exhibited higher endogenous cholesterol esterification rates. Taken together, these results suggest that apo A-IV levels influence the metabolism and antiatherogenic properties of HDL.
R D Cohen, L W Castellani, J H Qiao, B J Van Lenten, A J Lusis, K Reue
Missense mutations have been identified in the coding region of the extracellular calcium-sensing receptor (CASR) gene and cause human autosomal dominant hypo- and hypercalcemic disorders. The functional effects of several of these mutations have been characterized in either Xenopus laevis oocytes or in human embryonic kidney (HEK293) cells. All of the mutations that have been examined to date, however, cause single putative amino acid substitutions. In this report, we studied a mutant CASR with an Alu-repetitive element inserted at codon 876, which was identified in affected members of families with the hypercalcemic disorders, familial hypocalciuric hypercalcemia (FHH) and neonatal severe hyperparathyroidism (NSHPT), to understand how this insertion affects CASR function. After cloning of the Alu-repetitive element into the wild-type CASR cDNA, we transiently expressed the mutant receptor in HEK293 cells. Expression of mutant and wild-type receptors was assessed by Western analysis, and the effects of the mutation on extracellular calcium (Ca2+(o)) and gadolinium (Gd3+(o)) elicited increases in the cytosolic calcium concentration (Ca2+(i)) were examined in fura-2-loaded cells using dual wavelength fluorimetry. The insertion resulted in truncated receptor species that had molecular masses some 30 kD less than that of the wild-type CASR and exhibited no Ca2+(i) responses to either Ca2+(o) or Gd3+(o). A similar result was observed with a mutated CASR truncated at residue 876. However, the Alu mutant receptor had no impact on the function of the coexpressed wild-type receptor. Interestingly, the Alu mutant receptor demonstrated decreased cell surface expression relative to the wild-type receptor, whereas the CASR (A877stop) mutant exhibited increased cell surface expression. Thus, like the missense mutations that have been characterized to date in families with FHH, the Alu insertion in this family is a loss-of-function mutation that produces hypercalcemia by reducing the number of normally functional CASRs on the surface of parathyroid and kidney cells. In vitro transcription of exon 7 of the CASR containing the Alu sequence yielded the full-length mutant product and an additional shorter product that was truncated due to stalling of the polymerase at the poly(T) tract. In vitro translation of the mutant transcript yielded three truncated protein products representing termination in all three reading frames at stop codons within the Alu insertion. Thus sequences within the Alu contribute to slippage or frameshift mutagenesis during transcription and/or translation.
M Bai, N Janicic, S Trivedi, S J Quinn, D E Cole, E M Brown, G N Hendy
Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEi) improve cardiac function and remodeling and prolong survival in patients with heart failure (HF). Blockade of the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) with an angiotensin II type 1 receptor antagonist (AT1-ant) may have a similar beneficial effect. In addition to inhibition of the RAS, ACEi may also act by inhibiting kinin destruction, whereas AT1-ant may block the RAS at the level of the AT1 receptor and activate the angiotensin II type 2 (AT2) receptor. Using a model of HF induced by myocardial infarction (MI) in rats, we studied the role of kinins in the cardioprotective effect of ACEi. We also investigated whether an AT1-ant has a similar effect and whether these effects are partly due to activation of the AT2 receptor. Two months after MI, rats were treated for 2 mo with: (a) vehicle; (b) the ACEi ramipril, with and without the B2 receptor antagonist icatibant (B2-ant); or (c) an AT1-ant with and without an AT2-antagonist (AT2-ant) or B2-ant. Vehicle-treated rats had a significant increase in left ventricular end-diastolic (LVEDV) and end-systolic volume (LVESV) as well as interstitial collagen deposition and cardiomyocyte size, whereas ejection fraction was decreased. Left ventricular remodeling and cardiac function were improved by the ACEi and AT1-ant. The B2-ant blocked most of the cardioprotective effect of the ACEi, whereas the effect of the AT1-ant was blocked by the AT2-ant. The decreases in LVEDV and LVESV caused by the AT1-ant were also partially blocked by the B2-ant. We concluded that (a) in HF both ACEi and AT1-ant have a cardioprotective effect, which could be due to either a direct action on the heart or secondary to altered hemodynamics, or both; and (b) the effect of the ACEi is mediated in part by kinins, whereas that of the AT1-ant is triggered by activation of the AT2 receptor and is also mediated in part by kinins. We speculate that in HF, blockade of AT1 receptors increases both renin and angiotensins; these angiotensins stimulate the AT2 receptor, which in turn may play an important role in the therapeutic effect of the AT1-ant via kinins and other autacoids.
Y H Liu, X P Yang, V G Sharov, O Nass, H N Sabbah, E Peterson, O A Carretero
The systemic autoimmune syndrome of MRL/Mp-lpr/lpr (MRL/lpr) mice consists of severe pan-isotype hypergammaglobulinemia, autoantibody production, lymphadenopathy, and immune complex-associated end-organ disease. Its pathogenesis has been largely attributed to helper alphabeta T cells that may require critical cytokines to propagate pathogenic autoantibody production. To investigate the roles of prototypical Th1 and Th2 cytokines in the pathogenesis of murine lupus, IFN-gamma -/- and IL-4 -/- lupus-prone mice were generated by backcrossing cytokine knockout animals against MRL/lpr breeders. IFN-gamma -/- animals produced significantly reduced titers of IgG2a and IgG2b serum immunoglobulins as well as autoantibodies, but maintained comparable levels of IgG1 and IgE in comparison to cytokine-intact controls; in contrast, IL-4 -/- animals produced significantly less IgG1 and IgE serum immunoglobulins, but maintained comparable levels of IgG2a and IgG2b as well as autoantibodies in comparison to controls. Both IFN-gamma -/- and IL-4 -/- mice, however, developed significantly reduced lymphadenopathy and end-organ disease. These results suggest that IFN-gamma and IL-4 play opposing but dispensable roles in the development of lupus-associated hypergammaglobulinemia and autoantibody production; however, they both play prominent roles in the pathogenesis of murine lupus-associated tissue injury, as well as in lpr-induced lymphadenopathy.
S L Peng, J Moslehi, J Craft
Drug resistance, a major obstacle to cancer chemotherapy, can be mediated by MDR-1/P-glycoprotein. Deletion of the first 68 residues of MDR-1 in an adriamycin-selected cell line after a 4;7 translocation, t(4q;7q), resulted in a hybrid mRNA containing sequences from both MDR-1 and a novel chromosome 4 gene. Further selection resulted in amplification of a hybrid gene. Expression of the hybrid mRNA was controlled by the chromosome 4 gene, providing a model for overexpression of MDR-1. Additional hybrid mRNAs in other drug-selected cell lines and in patients with refractory leukemia, with MDR-1 juxtaposed 3' to an active gene, establishes random chromosomal rearrangements with overexpression of hybrid MDR-1 mRNAs as a mechanism of acquired drug resistance.
L A Mickley, B A Spengler, T A Knutsen, J L Biedler, T Fojo
To understand the factors contributing to the synthesis of human apolipoprotein AI (apoAI), relative apoAI synthesis was measured from endoscopic biopsy samples obtained from 18 healthy volunteers. The relative amount of apoAI synthesis was directly correlated with steady state intestinal apoAI mRNA levels and a 10-fold within-group variability was observed. Analysis of genomic DNA from the subjects revealed five polymorphic sites which defined two haplotypes in the intestinal enhancer region of the apoAI gene located upstream of the apolipoprotein CIII gene transcriptional start site (+ 1): (-641 C to A, -630 G to A, -625 T to deletion, -482 C to T, and -455 T to C). The population frequencies of the wild-type and mutant alleles were 0.53 and 0.44, respectively. Mean steady state apoAI mRNA levels and mean relative apoAI synthesis were 49 and 37% lower, respectively, in homozygotes for the mutant allele and 28 and 41% lower, respectively, in heterozygotes than in homozygotes for the wild-type allele (P < 0.05 for both). Site-directed mutants of apoAI gene promoter/reporter constructs containing the above mutations were transfected into Caco-2 cells and showed a 46% decrease in transcriptional activity compared with the wild type (P < 0.001); however, no significant differences were observed in HepG2 cells. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays showed that the mutated sequences from -655 to -610 bound Caco-2 cell nuclear protein(s) while the wild type did not. These results indicate that intestinal apoAI gene transcription and protein synthesis are genetically determined and are reduced in the presence of common mutations which induced binding of nuclear protein(s), possibly a transcriptional repressor.
S Naganawa, H N Ginsberg, R M Glickman, G S Ginsburg
Tyrosine kinase-dependent cell signaling is postulated to be a pivotal control point in inflammatory responses initiated by bacterial products and TNF. Using a canine model of gram-negative septic shock, we investigated the effect of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (tyrphostins) on survival. Animals were infected intraperitoneally with Escherichia coli 0111: B4, and then, in a randomized, blinded fashion, were treated immediately with one of two tyrphostins, AG 556 (n = 40) or AG 126 (n = 10), or with control (n = 50), and followed for 28 d or until death. All animals received supplemental oxygen, fluids, and antibiotics. Tyrphostin AG 556 improved survival times when compared to controls (P = 0.05). During the first 48 h after infection, AG 556 also improved mean arterial pressure, left ventricular ejection fraction, cardiac output, oxygen delivery, and alveolar-arterial oxygen gradient compared to controls (all P < or = 0.05). These improvements in organ injury were significantly predictive of survival. Treatment with AG 556 had no effect on clearance of endotoxin or bacteria from the blood (both P = NS); however, AG 556 did significantly lower serum TNF levels (P = 0.03). These data are consistent with the conclusion that AG 556 prevented cytokine-induced multiorgan failure and death during septic shock by inhibiting cell-signaling pathways without impairing host defenses as determined by clearance of bacteria and endotoxin.
J E Sevransky, G Shaked, A Novogrodsky, A Levitzki, A Gazit, A Hoffman, R J Elin, Z M Quezado, B D Freeman, P Q Eichacker, R L Danner, S M Banks, J Bacher, M L Thomas 3rd, C Natanson
TGFbeta1 is known for its potent and diverse biological effects, including immune regulation, and cell growth and differentiation. We have recently shown that TGFbeta1 precursor is processed by human furin COOH-terminal to the R-H-R-R278 cleavage site to generate authentic mature TGFbeta1. In the present study, we demonstrate that steady-state furin mRNA levels are increased in rat synovial cells by 2 and 20 ng/ml TGFbeta1. Stimulation with TGFbeta1 results in a significant increase in furin mRNA levels, starting at 3 h with the peak effect observed at 12 h (2.5-fold increase +/-0.4). TGFbeta1 did not increase furin mRNA stability, and treatment of synovial cells with actinomycin D, before TGFbeta1 addition prevented the increase in fur gene expression, suggesting that the observed regulation occurs at the level of gene transcription. Treatment of synovial and NRK-49F fibroblastic cells with exogenous TGFbeta1 (5 ng/ml) or TGFbeta2 (10 ng/ml) translates into an increase in pro-TGFbeta1 processing as evidenced by the appearance of a 40-kD immunoreactive band corresponding to the TGFbeta1 NH2-terminal pro-region. Furin processing activity stimulated by TGFbeta2 correlates with significant increase in extracellular mature and heat-activable TGFbeta1 as determined by an isoform-specific ELISA assay. Taken together, these results demonstrate for the first time that TGFbeta1 upregulates gene expression of its own converting enzyme, and that this expression is translated into augmented processing of the TGFbeta1 precursor form. Such adaptive responsiveness of the TGFbeta1 convertase may represent an important aspect of TGFbeta1 bioavailibility in TGFbeta1-related processes and pathological conditions.
F Blanchette, R Day, W Dong, M H Laprise, C M Dubois
We reported two specific, reproducible, and quantitative clonality assays based on detection of exonic polymorphisms of the X chromosome genes p55 and G6PD using rtPCR-LDR. These assays are inconvenient for screening purposes. This study sought to develop a simple, reproducible assay, practical for screening genomic DNA samples for p55/G6PD genotypes, rapid clonality determination, and to determine the linkage relationship between these closely related loci. The salient feature of ASPCR is the performance of two PCR rounds. The first generates template; the second, using one aliquot of first-round products in two reaction tubes, each containing one allele-specific primer, detects each allele. ASPCR and rtPCR-LDR produced identical p55/G6PD results in 91 normal female genomic DNAs, and in 12 clonal hematopoietic disorder cDNAs, confirming assay validity. 209 female and 207 male genomic DNA samples were analyzed for p55/G6PD genotype by ASPCR; 60% of females were heterozygous at one or both loci. G6PD and p55 allelic frequencies were significantly different among African-American men and women, but were not significantly different among Caucasian men and women. These loci were in linkage equilibrium among African Americans, but not among Caucasians. ASPCR is a rapid, sensitive, and specific method for screening large numbers of genomic DNAs, and for rapid clonality determination.
Y Liu, J Phelan, R C Go, J F Prchal, J T Prchal
To characterize the role of the gap junction protein connexin43 (Cx43) in ventricular conduction, we studied hearts of mice with targeted deletion of the Cx43 gene. Mice homozygous for the Cx43 null mutation (Cx43 -/-) die shortly after birth. Attempts to record electrical activity in neonatal Cx43 -/- hearts (n = 5) were unsuccessful. Ventricular epicardial conduction of paced beats, however, was 30% slower in heterozygous (Cx43 -/+) neonatal hearts (0.14+/-0.04 m/s, n = 27) than in wild-type (Cx43 +/+) hearts (0.20+/-0.07 m/s, n = 32; P < 0.001). This phenotype was even more severe in adult mice; ventricular epicardial conduction was 44% slower in 6-9 mo-old Cx43 -/+ hearts (0.18+/-0.03 m/s, n = 5) than in wild-type hearts (0.32+/-0.07 m/s, n = 7, P < 0.001). Electrocardiograms revealed significant prolongation of the QRS complex in adult Cx43 -/+ mice (13.4+/-1.8 ms, n = 13) compared with Cx43 +/+ mice (11.5+/-1.4 ms, n = 12, P < 0.01). Whole-cell recordings of action potential parameters in cultured disaggregated neonatal ventricular myocytes from Cx43 -/+ and +/+ hearts showed no differences. Thus, reduction in the abundance of a major cardiac gap junction protein through targeted deletion of a Cx43 allele directly leads to slowed ventricular conduction.
P A Guerrero, R B Schuessler, L M Davis, E C Beyer, C M Johnson, K A Yamada, J E Saffitz
Cholera toxin (CT)-induced intestinal secretion and Chinese hamster ovary cell (CHO) elongation involves cyclic adenosine monophosphate and protein synthesis-dependent prostaglandin formation. We previously reported inhibition of CT-induced intestinal secretion and CHO elongation by platelet-activating factor (PAF) receptor antagonists and secretion of PAF by human intestinal epithelial cells exposed to CT. Herein, we show that PAF is involved after cAMP and that PAF, like CT, mediates prostaglandin E2 synthesis in CHO cells. CT-induced CHO elongation was blocked by specific PAF receptor antagonists, BN52021 and SR27417. SR27417 blocked dibutyryl cAMP-induced CHO elongation, but did not alter CHO elongation caused by PGE2. Neither CT-stimulated cAMP accumulation nor PGE2 production was inhibited by SR27417. Both PGE2 and PAF caused significant CHO elongation, but the latter did not stimulate significant cAMP production. In addition, PAF, like CT and dibutyryl cAMP, stimulated significant PGE2 production. Finally, the protein synthesis inhibitor cycloheximide, which completely blocks the effect of CT on prostaglandin synthesis, also blocked that of PAF, suggesting that PAF also mediates protein synthesis-dependent prostaglandin formation. We conclude that PAF is involved in CHO cytoskeletal responses to CT after the accumulation of cAMP and, like CT, PAF stimulates protein synthesis-dependent prostaglandin accumulation.
N M Thielman, M Marcinkiewicz, J Sarosiek, G D Fang, R L Guerrant
We have examined the effects of mildly oxidized LDL and atherosclerosis on the levels of two proteins associated with HDL; apolipoprotein J (apoJ), and paraoxonase (PON). On an atherogenic diet, PON activity decreased by 52%, and apoJ levels increased 2.8-fold in fatty streak susceptible mice, C57BL/6J (BL/6), but not in fatty streak resistant mice, C3H/HeJ (C3H). Plasma PON activity was also significantly decreased, and apoJ levels were markedly increased in apolipoprotein E knockout mice on the chow diet, resulting in a 9.2-fold increase in the apoJ/PON ratio as compared to controls. Furthermore, a dramatic increase in the apoJ/PON ratio (over 100-fold) was observed in LDL receptor knockout mice when they were fed a 0.15%-cholesterol-enriched diet. Injection of mildly oxidized LDL (but not native LDL) into BL/6 mice (but not in C3H mice) on a chow diet resulted in a 59% decrease in PON activity (P < 0.01) and a 3.6-fold increase in apoJ levels (P < 0.01). When an acute phase reaction was induced in rabbits, or the rabbits were placed on an atherogenic diet, hepatic mRNA for apoJ was increased by 2.7-fold and 2.8-fold, respectively. Treatment of HepG2 cells in culture with mildly oxidized LDL (but not native LDL) resulted in reduced mRNA levels for PON (3.0-fold decrease) and increased mRNA levels for apoJ (2.0-fold increase). In normolipidemic patients with angiographically documented coronary artery disease who did not have diabetes and were not on lipid-lowering medication (n = 14), the total cholesterol/HDL cholesterol ratio was 3.1+/-0.9 as compared to 2.9+/-0.4 in the controls (n = 19). This difference was not statistically significant. In contrast, the apoJ/PON ratio was 3.0+/-0.4 in the patients compared to 0.72+/-0.2 in the controls (P < 0.009). In a subset of these normolipidemic patients (n = 5), the PON activity was low (48+/-6.6 versus 98+/-17 U/ml for controls; P < 0.009), despite similar normal HDL levels, and the HDL from these patients failed to protect against LDL oxidation in co-cultures of human artery wall cells. We conclude that: (a) mildly oxidized LDL can induce an increased apoJ/PON ratio, and (b) the apoJ/PON ratio may prove to be a better predictor of atherosclerosis than the total cholesterol/HDL cholesterol ratio.
M Navab, S Hama-Levy, B J Van Lenten, G C Fonarow, C J Cardinez, L W Castellani, M L Brennan, A J Lusis, A M Fogelman, B N La Du
Surfactant synthesis is critically dependent on the availability of fatty acids. One fatty acid source may be circulating triglycerides that are transported in VLDL, and hydrolyzed to free fatty acids by lipoprotein lipase (LPL). To evaluate this hypothesis, we incubated immortalized or primary rat alveolar pre-type II epithelial cells with VLDL. The cells were observed to surface bind, internalize, and degrade VLDL, a process that was induced by exogenous LPL. LPL induction of lipoprotein uptake significantly increased the rates of choline incorporation into phosphatidylcholine (PC) and disaturated PC, and these effects were associated with a three-fold increase in the activity of the rate-regulatory enzyme for PC synthesis, cytidylyltransferase. Compared with native LPL, a fusion protein of glutathione S-transferase with the catalytically inactive carboxy-terminal domain of LPL did not activate CT despite inducing VLDL uptake. A variant of the fusion protein of glutathione S-transferase with the catalytically inactive carboxy-terminal domain of LPL that partially blocked LPL-induced catabolism of VLDL via LDL receptors also partially blocked the induction of surfactant synthesis by VLDL. Taken together, these observations suggest that both the lipolytic actions of LPL and LPL-induced VLDL catabolism via lipoprotein receptors might play an integral role in providing the fatty acid substrates used in surfactant phospholipid synthesis.
R K Mallampalli, R G Salome, S L Bowen, D A Chappell
Intradermal inoculation of the rabbit with Borrelia burgdorferi, sensu lato, results in the consistent development of erythema migrans (EM), dermal infection, and visceral dissemination of the spirochete. Within 5 mo, EM as well as dermal and visceral infection are cleared and the animals exhibit immunity to reinfection. This study compares infection-derived immunity with acquired resistance resulting from the administration of a lipidated recombinant outer surface protein A (OspA) vaccine presently undergoing human trial. 4 of 11 OspA vaccinated rabbits, challenged intradermally at each of 10 sites with 10(5) low passage B. burgdorferi, developed EM as well as dermal and disseminated infection. After identical challenge, 2 of the 11 infection-immune rabbits developed a dermal infection, but not EM or disseminated infection. Further, ELISA anti-OspA titers did not correlate with the status of immunity for either OspA vaccinated or infection-immune rabbits. Prechallenge ELISA anti-OspA titers were relatively low in the infection-immune group. This study demonstrates that a state of partial immunity to experimental Lyme disease may result that could potentially mask infection. Further, our data strongly suggest that immunogen(s) other than OspA is/are responsible for stimulating acquired resistance in the infection-immune rabbit.
D M Foley, Y P Wang, X Y Wu, D R Blanco, M A Lovett, J N Miller
Antigen challenge of sensitized guinea pigs decreases the function of inhibitory M2 muscarinic autoreceptors on parasympathetic nerves in the lung, potentiating vagally induced bronchoconstriction. Loss of M2 receptor function is associated with the accumulation of eosinophils around airway nerves. To determine whether recruitment of eosinophils via expression of VLA-4 and L-selectin is critical for loss of M2 receptor function, guinea pigs were pretreated with monoclonal antibodies to VLA-4 (HP1/2) or L-selectin (LAM1-116). Guinea pigs were sensitized and challenged with ovalbumin, and M2 receptor function was tested. In controls, blockade of neuronal M2 muscarinic receptors by gallamine potentiated vagally induced bronchoconstriction, while in challenged animals this effect was markedly reduced, confirming M2 receptor dysfunction. Pretreatment with HP1/2, but not with LAM1-116, protected M2 receptor function in the antigen-challenged animals. HP1/2 also inhibited the development of hyperresponsiveness, and selectively inhibited accumulation of eosinophils in the lungs as measured by lavage and histology. Thus, inhibition of eosinophil influx into the lungs protects the function of M2 muscarinic receptors, and in so doing, prevents hyperresponsiveness in antigen-challenged guinea pigs.
A D Fryer, R W Costello, B L Yost, R R Lobb, T F Tedder, D A Steeber, B S Bochner
We have previously demonstrated that experimental expression of the polyomavirus transcription factor T-antigen has the potential to induce anti-DNA antibodies in mice. Two sets of independent evidences are presented here that demonstrate a biological relevance for this model. First, we describe results demonstrating that mice inoculated with T-antigen-expressing plasmids produced antibodies, not only to T-antigen and DNA, but also to the DNA-binding eukaryotic transcription factors TATA-binding protein (TBP), and to the cAMP-response-element-binding protein (CREB). Secondly, we investigated whether polyomavirus reactivation occurs in SLE patients, and whether antibodies to T-antigen, DNA, and to TBP and CREB are linked to such events. Both within and among these SLE patients, frequent polyomavirus reactivations were observed that could not be explained by certain rearrangements of the noncoding control regions, nor by corticosteroid treatment. Linked to these events, antibodies to T-antigen, DNA, TBP, and CREB were detected, identical to what we observed in mice. Antibodies recognizing double-stranded DNA were confined to patients with frequent polyomavirus reactivations. The results described here indicate that cognate interaction of B cells recognizing DNA or DNA-associated proteins and T cells recognizing T antigen had taken place as a consequence of complex formation between T ag and DNA in vivo in the context of polyomavirus reactivations.
O P Rekvig, U Moens, A Sundsfjord, G Bredholt, A Osei, H Haaheim, T Traavik, E Arnesen, H J Haga