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1.  Augmentation of natural cytotoxicity by chronic low-dose ionizing radiation in murine natural killer cells primed by IL-2 
Journal of Radiation Research  2012;53(6):823-829.
The possible beneficial effects of chronic low-dose irradiation (LDR) and its mechanism of action in a variety of pathophysiological processes such as cancer are a subject of intense investigation. While animal studies involving long-term exposure to LDR have yielded encouraging results, the influence of LDR at the cellular level has been less well defined. We reasoned that since natural killer (NK) cells constitute an early responder to exogenous stress, NK cells may reveal sentinel alterations in function upon exposure to LDR. When purified NK cells received LDR at 4.2 mGy/h for a total of 0.2 Gy in vitro, no significant difference in cell viability was observed. Likewise, no functional changes were detected in LDR-exposed NK cells, demonstrating that LDR alone was insufficient to generate changes at the cellular level. Nonetheless, significant augmentation of cytotoxic, but not proliferative, function was detected when NK cells were stimulated with low-dose IL-2 prior to irradiation. This enhancement of NK cytotoxicity was not due to alterations in NK-activating receptors, NK1.1, NKG2D, CD69 and 2B4, or changes in the rate of early or late apoptosis. Therefore, LDR, in the presence of suboptimal cytokine levels, can facilitate anti-tumor cytotoxicity of NK cells without influencing cellular proliferation or apoptosis. Whether these results translate to in vivo consequences remains to be seen; however, our data provide initial evidence that exposure to LDR can lead to subtle immune-enhancing effects on NK cells and may explain, in part, the functional basis underlying, diverse beneficial effects seen in the animals chronically exposed to LDR.
PMCID: PMC3483842  PMID: 22915781
Low-dose radiation; natural killer cells; natural cytotoxicity; innate immunity
2.  Methylation of eukaryotic elongation factor 2 induced by basic fibroblast growth factor via mitogen-activated protein kinase 
Experimental & Molecular Medicine  2011;43(10):550-560.
Protein arginine methylation is important for a variety of cellular processes including transcriptional regulation, mRNA splicing, DNA repair, nuclear/cytoplasmic shuttling and various signal transduction pathways. However, the role of arginine methylation in protein biosynthesis and the extracellular signals that control arginine methylation are not fully understood. Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) has been identified as a potent stimulator of myofibroblast dedifferentiation into fibroblasts. We demonstrated that symmetric arginine dimethylation of eukaryotic elongation factor 2 (eEF2) is induced by bFGF without the change in the expression level of eEF2 in mouse embryo fibroblast NIH3T3 cells. The eEF2 methylation is preceded by ras-raf-mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK)-extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2)-p21Cip/WAF1 activation, and suppressed by the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) inhibitor PD98059 and p21Cip/WAF1 short interfering RNA (siRNA). We determined that protein arginine methyltransferase 7 (PRMT7) is responsible for the methylation, and that PRMT5 acts as a coordinator. Collectively, we demonstrated that eEF2, a key factor involved in protein translational elongation is symmetrically arginine-methylated in a reversible manner, being regulated by bFGF through MAPK signaling pathway.
PMCID: PMC3222816  PMID: 21778808
cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21; fibroblast growth factor 2; mitogen-activated protein kinases; N,N-dimethylarginine; peptide elongation factor 2; protein-arginine N-methyltransfe

Results 1-2 (2)