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1.  Type 1 diabetes immunotherapy using polyclonal regulatory T cells 
Science translational medicine  2015;7(315):315ra189.
Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease that occurs in genetically susceptible individuals. Regulatory T cells (Tregs) have been shown to be defective in the autoimmune disease setting. Thus, efforts to repair or replace Tregs in T1D may reverse autoimmunity and protect the remaining insulin-producing β cells. On the basis of this premise, a robust technique has been developed to isolate and expand Tregs from patients with T1D. The expanded Tregs retained their T cell receptor diversity and demonstrated enhanced functional activity. We report on a phase 1 trial to assess safety of Treg adoptive immunotherapy in T1D. Fourteen adult subjects with T1D, in four dosing cohorts, received ex vivo–expanded autologous CD4+CD127lo/−CD25+ polyclonal Tregs (0.05 × 108 to 26 × 108 cells). A subset of the adoptively transferred Tregs was long-lived, with up to 25% of the peak level remaining in the circulation at 1 year after transfer. Immune studies showed transient increases in Tregs in recipients and retained a broad Treg FOXP3+CD4+CD25hiCD127lo phenotype long-term. There were no infusion reactions or cell therapy–related high-grade adverse events. C-peptide levels persisted out to 2+ years after transfer in several individuals. These results support the development of a phase 2 trial to test efficacy of the Treg therapy.
PMCID: PMC4729454  PMID: 26606968
2.  Potential Mechanisms Leading to the Abnormal Lipid Profile in Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis Versus Healthy Volunteers and Reversal by Tofacitinib†, ‡  
Tofacitinib is an oral JAK inhibitor for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Systemic inflammation is proposed to play a fundamental role in the altered lipid metabolism associated with RA; however, the underlying mechanisms are unknown. We undertook this study to compare cholesterol and lipoprotein kinetics in patients with active RA with those in matched healthy volunteers.
This was a phase I open‐label mechanism‐of‐action study. Cholesterol and lipoprotein kinetics were assessed with 13C‐cholesterol and 13C‐leucine infusions. RA patients were reevaluated after receiving oral tofacitinib 10 mg twice daily for 6 weeks.
Levels of high‐density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, low‐density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, total cholesterol, and apolipoprotein A‐I (Apo A‐I) as well as HDL cholesterol particle number were lower in RA patients (n = 36) than in healthy volunteers (n = 33). In contrast, the cholesterol ester fractional catabolic rate was higher in RA patients, but no differences were observed in cholesterol ester transfer protein, cholesterol ester production rate, HDL‐associated Apo A‐I fractional catabolic rate, or LDL‐associated Apo B fractional catabolic rate. Following tofacitinib treatment in RA patients, the cholesterol ester fractional catabolic rate decreased and cholesterol levels increased. The decrease in cholesterol ester fractional catabolic rate correlated significantly with the increase in HDL cholesterol. Additionally, HDL cholesterol particle number increased and markers of HDL cholesterol function improved.
This is the first study to assess cholesterol and lipoprotein kinetics in patients with active RA and matched healthy volunteers. The data suggest that low cholesterol levels in patients with active RA may be driven by increases in cholesterol ester catabolism. Tofacitinib treatment reduced cholesterol ester catabolism, thereby increasing cholesterol levels toward those in healthy volunteers, and markers of antiatherogenic HDL function improved.
PMCID: PMC5024065  PMID: 25470338
3.  Reduced in vivo hepatic proteome replacement rates but not cell proliferation rates predict maximum lifespan extension in mice 
Aging Cell  2015;15(1):118-127.
Combating the social and economic consequences of a growing elderly population will require the identification of interventions that slow the development of age‐related diseases. Preserved cellular homeostasis and delayed aging have been previously linked to reduced cell proliferation and protein synthesis rates. To determine whether changes in these processes may contribute to or predict delayed aging in mammals, we measured cell proliferation rates and the synthesis and replacement rates (RRs) of over a hundred hepatic proteins in vivo in three different mouse models of extended maximum lifespan (maxLS): Snell Dwarf, calorie‐restricted (CR), and rapamycin (Rapa)‐treated mice. Cell proliferation rates were not consistently reduced across the models. In contrast, reduced hepatic protein RRs (longer half‐lives) were observed in all three models compared to controls. Intriguingly, the degree of mean hepatic protein RR reduction was significantly correlated with the degree of maxLS extension across the models and across different Rapa doses. Absolute rates of hepatic protein synthesis were reduced in Snell Dwarf and CR, but not Rapa‐treated mice. Hepatic chaperone levels were unchanged or reduced and glutathione S‐transferase synthesis was preserved or increased in all three models, suggesting a reduced demand for protein renewal, possibly due to reduced levels of unfolded or damaged proteins. These data demonstrate that maxLS extension in mammals is associated with improved hepatic proteome homeostasis, as reflected by a reduced demand for protein renewal, and that reduced hepatic protein RRs hold promise as an early biomarker and potential target for interventions that delay aging in mammals.
PMCID: PMC4717272  PMID: 26541492
calorie restriction; cell proliferation; maximum lifespan extension; proteome dynamics; rapamycin; Snell Dwarf
4.  Continuous antigenic stimulation of DO11.10 TCR transgenic mice in the presence or absence of IL-1β: possible implications for mechanisms of T cell depletion in HIV disease1 
Untreated HIV disease is associated with chronic immune activation and CD4+ T cell depletion. A variety of mechanisms have been invoked to account for CD4+ T cell depletion in this context, but the quantitative contributions of these proposed mechanisms over time remains unclear. We turned to the DO11.10 TCR transgenic (tg) mouse model, where OVA is recognized in the context of H-2d, to explore the impact of chronic antigenic stimulation on CD4+ T cell dynamics. To model dichotomous states of persistent antigen exposure in the presence or absence of proinflammatory stimulation, we administered OVA peptide (OVAp) to these mice on a continuous basis with or without the prototypic proinflammatory cytokine, interleukin 1β (IL-1β). In both cases, circulating antigen-specific and non-specific CD4+ T cells were depleted. However, in the absence of IL-1β, there was limited proliferation and effector/memory conversion of antigen-specific T cells, depletion of peripheral CD4+ T cells in hematolymphoid organs, and systemic induction of regulatory FoxP3+CD4+ T cells, as often observed in late-stage HIV disease. By contrast, when OVAp was administered in the presence of IL-1β, effector/memory phenotype T cells expanded and the typical symptoms of heightened immune activation were observed. Acknowledging the imperfect and incomplete relationship between antigen-stimulated DO11.10 TCR tg mice and HIV-infected humans, our data suggest that CD4+ T cell depletion in the setting of HIV disease may reflect, at least in part, chronic antigen exposure in the absence of proinflammatory signals and/or appropriate antigen-presenting cell functions.
PMCID: PMC4610874  PMID: 26416271
5.  Continuous antigenic stimulation of DO11.10 TCR transgenic mice in the presence or absence of IL-1β: possible implications for mechanisms of T cell depletion in HIV disease1 
Untreated HIV disease is associated with chronic immune activation and CD4+ T cell depletion. A variety of mechanisms have been invoked to account for CD4+ T cell depletion in this context, but the quantitative contributions of these proposed mechanisms over time remains unclear. We turned to the DO11.10 TCR transgenic (tg) mouse model, where OVA is recognized in the context of H-2d, to explore the impact of chronic antigenic stimulation on CD4+ T cell dynamics. To model dichotomous states of persistent antigen exposure in the presence or absence of proinflammatory stimulation, we administered OVA peptide (OVAp) to these mice on a continuous basis with or without the prototypic proinflammatory cytokine, interleukin 1β (IL-1β). In both cases, circulating antigen-specific CD4+ T cells were depleted. However, in the absence of IL-1β, there was limited proliferation and effector/memory conversion of antigen-specific T cells, depletion of peripheral CD4+ T cells in hematolymphoid organs, and systemic induction of regulatory FoxP3+CD4+ T cells, as often observed in late-stage HIV disease. By contrast, when OVAp was administered in the presence of IL-1β, effector/memory phenotype T cells expanded and the typical symptoms of heightened immune activation were observed. Acknowledging the imperfect and incomplete relationship between antigen-stimulated DO11.10 TCR tg mice and HIV-infected humans, our data suggest that CD4+ T cell depletion in the setting of HIV disease may reflect, at least in part, chronic antigen exposure in the absence of proinflammatory signals and/or appropriate antigen-presenting cell functions.
PMCID: PMC4610874  PMID: 26416271
6.  Circulating protein synthesis rates reveal skeletal muscle proteome dynamics 
Here, we have described and validated a strategy for monitoring skeletal muscle protein synthesis rates in rodents and humans over days or weeks from blood samples. We based this approach on label incorporation into proteins that are synthesized specifically in skeletal muscle and escape into the circulation. Heavy water labeling combined with sensitive tandem mass spectrometric analysis allowed integrated synthesis rates of proteins in muscle tissue across the proteome to be measured over several weeks. Fractional synthesis rate (FSR) of plasma creatine kinase M-type (CK-M) and carbonic anhydrase 3 (CA-3) in the blood, more than 90% of which is derived from skeletal muscle, correlated closely with FSR of CK-M, CA-3, and other proteins of various ontologies in skeletal muscle tissue in both rodents and humans. Protein synthesis rates across the muscle proteome generally changed in a coordinate manner in response to a sprint interval exercise training regimen in humans and to denervation or clenbuterol treatment in rodents. FSR of plasma CK-M and CA-3 revealed changes and interindividual differences in muscle tissue proteome dynamics. In human subjects, sprint interval training primarily stimulated synthesis of structural and glycolytic proteins. Together, our results indicate that this approach provides a virtual biopsy, sensitively revealing individualized changes in proteome-wide synthesis rates in skeletal muscle without a muscle biopsy. Accordingly, this approach has potential applications for the diagnosis, management, and treatment of muscle disorders.
PMCID: PMC4701543  PMID: 26657858
7.  Fibroblast Growth Factor 21 Is Not Required for the Reductions in Circulating Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1 or Global Cell Proliferation Rates in Response to Moderate Calorie Restriction in Adult Mice 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(11):e111418.
Calorie restriction (CR) delays aging and extends lifespan in numerous organisms, including mice. Down-regulation of the somatotropic axis, including a reduction in insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), likely plays an important role in CR-induced lifespan extension, possibly by reducing cell proliferation rates, thereby delaying replicative senescence and inhibiting tumor promotion. Accordingly, elucidating the mechanism(s) by which IGF-1 is reduced in response to CR holds therapeutic potential in the fight against age-related diseases. Up-regulation of fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) is one possible mechanism given that FGF21 expression is induced in response to nutritional deprivation and has been implicated as a negative regulator of IGF-1 expression. Here we investigated alterations in hepatic growth hormone (GH)-mediated IGF-1 production and signaling as well as the role of FGF21 in the regulation of IGF-1 levels and cell proliferation rates in response to moderate CR in adult mice. We found that in response to moderate CR, circulating GH and hepatic janus kinase 2 (JAK2) phosphorylation levels are unchanged but that hepatic signal transducer and activator of transcription 5 (STAT5) phosphorylation levels are reduced, identifying STAT5 phosphorylation as a potential key site of CR action within the somatotropic axis. Circadian measurements revealed that the relative level of FGF21 expression is both higher and lower in CR vs. ad libitum (AL)-fed mice, depending on the time of measurement. Employing FGF21-knockout mice, we determined that FGF21 is not required for the reduction in IGF-1 levels or cell proliferation rates in response to moderate CR. However, compared to AL-fed WT mice, AL-fed FGF21-knockout mice exhibited higher basal rates of cell proliferation, suggesting anti-mitotic effects of FGF21. This work provides insights into both GH-mediated IGF-1 production in the context of CR and the complex network that regulates FGF21 and IGF-1 expression and cell proliferation rates in response to nutritional status.
PMCID: PMC4219748  PMID: 25369265
8.  Nutritional Recommendations for the Management of Sarcopenia 
The Society for Sarcopenia, Cachexia, and Wasting Disease convened an expert panel to develop nutritional recommendations for prevention and management of sarcopenia. Exercise (both resistance and aerobic) in combination with adequate protein and energy intake is the key component of the prevention and management of sarcopenia. Adequate protein supplementation alone only slows loss of muscle mass. Adequate protein intake (leucine-enriched balanced amino acids and possibly creatine) may enhance muscle strength. Low 25(0H) vitamin D levels require vitamin D replacement.
PMCID: PMC4623318  PMID: 20627179
9.  Eicosapentaenoic acid but not docosahexaenoic acid restores skeletal muscle mitochondrial oxidative capacity in old mice 
Aging Cell  2015;14(5):734-743.
Mitochondrial dysfunction is often observed in aging skeletal muscle and is implicated in age-related declines in physical function. Early evidence suggests that dietary omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) improve mitochondrial function. Here, we show that 10 weeks of dietary eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) supplementation partially attenuated the age-related decline in mitochondrial function in mice, but this effect was not observed with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The improvement in mitochondrial function with EPA occurred in the absence of any changes in mitochondrial abundance or biogenesis, which was evaluated from RNA sequencing, large-scale proteomics, and direct measurements of muscle mitochondrial protein synthesis rates. We find that EPA improves muscle protein quality, specifically by decreasing mitochondrial protein carbamylation, a post-translational modification that is driven by inflammation. These results demonstrate that EPA attenuated the age-related loss of mitochondrial function and improved mitochondrial protein quality through a mechanism that is likely linked with anti-inflammatory properties of n-3 PUFAs. Furthermore, we demonstrate that EPA and DHA exert some common biological effects (anticoagulation, anti-inflammatory, reduced FXR/RXR activation), but also exhibit many distinct biological effects, a finding that underscores the importance of evaluating the therapeutic potential of individual n-3 PUFAs.
PMCID: PMC4568961  PMID: 26010060
aging; docosahexaenoic acid; eicosapentaenoic acid; mitochondria; omega 3; proteomics; sarcopenia
10.  Proteomic Analysis of Altered Extracellular Matrix Turnover in Bleomycin-induced Pulmonary Fibrosis 
Fibrotic disease is characterized by the pathological accumulation of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. Surprisingly, very little is known about the synthesis and degradation rates of the many proteins and proteoglycans that constitute healthy or pathological extracellular matrix. A comprehensive understanding of altered ECM protein synthesis and degradation during the onset and progression of fibrotic disease would be immensely valuable. We have developed a dynamic proteomics platform that quantifies the fractional synthesis rates of large numbers of proteins via stable isotope labeling and LC/MS-based mass isotopomer analysis. Here, we present the first broad analysis of ECM protein kinetics during the onset of experimental pulmonary fibrosis. Mice were labeled with heavy water for up to 21 days following the induction of lung fibrosis with bleomycin. Lung tissue was subjected to sequential protein extraction to fractionate cellular, guanidine-soluble ECM proteins and residual insoluble ECM proteins. Fractional synthesis rates were calculated for 34 ECM proteins or protein subunits, including collagens, proteoglycans, and microfibrillar proteins. Overall, fractional synthesis rates of guanidine-soluble ECM proteins were faster than those of insoluble ECM proteins, suggesting that the insoluble fraction reflected older, more mature matrix components. This was confirmed through the quantitation of pyridinoline cross-links in each protein fraction. In fibrotic lung tissue, there was a significant increase in the fractional synthesis of unique sets of matrix proteins during early (pre-1 week) and late (post-1 week) fibrotic response. Furthermore, we isolated fast turnover subpopulations of several ECM proteins (e.g. type I collagen) based on guanidine solubility, allowing for accelerated detection of increased synthesis of typically slow-turnover protein populations. This establishes the presence of multiple kinetic pools of pulmonary collagen in vivo with altered turnover rates during evolving fibrosis. These data demonstrate the utility of dynamic proteomics in analyzing changes in ECM protein turnover associated with the onset and progression of fibrotic disease.
PMCID: PMC4083112  PMID: 24741116
11.  Turnover Rates of Hepatic Collagen and Circulating Collagen-Associated Proteins in Humans with Chronic Liver Disease 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(4):e0123311.
Accumulation and degradation of scar tissue in fibrotic liver disease occur slowly, typically over many years. Direct measurement of fibrogenesis, the rate of scar tissue deposition, may provide valuable therapeutic and prognostic information. We describe here results from a pilot study utilizing in vivo metabolic labeling to measure the turnover rate of hepatic collagen and collagen-associated proteins in plasma for the first time in human subjects. Eight subjects with chronic liver disease were labeled with daily oral doses of 2H2O for up to 8 weeks prior to diagnostic liver biopsy and plasma collection. Tandem mass spectrometry was used to measure the abundance and fractional synthesis rate (FSR) of proteins in liver and blood. Relative protein abundance and FSR data in liver revealed marked differences among subjects. FSRs of hepatic type I and III collagen ranged from 0.2–0.6% per day (half-lives of 4 months to a year) and correlated significantly with worsening histologic fibrosis. Analysis of plasma protein turnover revealed two collagen-associated proteins, lumican and transforming growth factor beta-induced-protein (TGFBI), exhibiting FSRs that correlated significantly with FSRs of hepatic collagen. In summary, this is the first direct measurement of liver collagen turnover in vivo in humans and suggests a high rate of collagen remodeling in advanced fibrosis. In addition, the FSRs of collagen-associated proteins in plasma are measurable and may provide a novel strategy for monitoring hepatic fibrogenesis rates.
PMCID: PMC4409311  PMID: 25909381
12.  Effects of a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet on VLDL-triglyceride assembly, production, and clearance 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1999;104(8):1087-1096.
Low-fat, high-carbohydrate (LF/HC) diets commonly elevate plasma triglyceride (TG) concentrations, but the kinetic mechanisms responsible for this effect remain uncertain. Subjects with low TG (normolipidemic [NL]) and those with moderately elevated TG (hypertriglyceridemic [HTG]) were studied on both a control and an LF/HC diet. We measured VLDL particle and TG transport rates, plasma nonesterified fatty acid (NEFA) flux, and sources of fatty acids used for the assembly of VLDL-TG. The LF/HC diet resulted in a 60% elevation in TG, a 37% reduction in VLDL-TG clearance, and an 18% reduction in whole-body fat oxidation, but no significant change in VLDL-apo B or VLDL-TG secretion rates. Significant elevations in fasting apo B-48 concentrations were observed on the LF/HC in HTG subjects. In both groups, fasting de novo lipogenesis was low regardless of diet. The NEFA pool contributed the great majority of fatty acids to VLDL-TG in NL subjects on both diets, whereas in HTG subjects, the contribution of NEFA was somewhat lower overall and was reduced further in individuals on the LF/HC diet. Between 13% and 29% of VLDL-TG fatty acids remained unaccounted for by the sum of de novo lipogenesis and plasma NEFA input in HTG subjects. We conclude that (a) whole-food LF/HC diets reduce VLDL-TG clearance and do not increase VLDL-TG secretion or de novo lipogenesis; (b) sources of fatty acids for assembly of VLDL-TG differ between HTG and NL subjects and are further affected by diet composition; (c) the presence of chylomicron remnants in the fasting state on LF/HC diets may contribute to elevated TG levels by competing for VLDL-TG lipolysis and by providing a source of fatty acids for hepatic VLDL-TG synthesis; and (d) the assembly, production, and clearance of elevated plasma VLDL-TG in response to LF/HC diets therefore differ from those for elevated TG on higher-fat diets.
PMCID: PMC408572  PMID: 10525047
13.  Calorie Restriction Does Not Increase Short-term or Long-term Protein Synthesis 
Increased protein synthesis is proposed as a mechanism of life-span extension during caloric restriction (CR). We hypothesized that CR does not increase protein synthesis in all tissues and protein fractions and that any increased protein synthesis with CR would be due to an increased anabolic effect of feeding. We used short- (4 hours) and long-term (6 weeks) methods to measure in vivo protein synthesis in lifelong ad libitum (AL) and CR mice. We did not detect an acute effect of feeding on protein synthesis while liver mitochondrial protein synthesis was lower in CR mice versus AL mice. Mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling was repressed in liver and heart from CR mice indicative of energetic stress and suppression of growth. Our main findings were that CR did not increase rates of mixed protein synthesis over the long term or in response to acute feeding, and protein synthesis was maintained despite decreased mTOR signaling.
PMCID: PMC3693598  PMID: 23105041
Aging; Stable isotope; Protein metabolism.
14.  Longitudinal changes in total body creatine pool size and skeletal muscle mass using the D3-creatine dilution method 
We recently validated in cross-sectional studies a new method to determine total body creatine pool size and skeletal muscle mass based on D3-creatine dilution from an oral dose and detection of urinary creatinine enrichment by isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS). Routine clinical use of the method in aging and disease will require repeated application of the method, with a more widely available technology than IRMS, to enable determination of change in skeletal muscle mass in longitudinal studies. We therefore adapted the method to liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) technology, and sought to establish proof of concept for the repeated application of the method in a longitudinal study. Because the turnover of creatine is slow, it was also critical to determine the impact of background enrichment from an initial dose of oral D3-creatine on subsequent, longitudinal measurements of change in muscle mass.
Rats were given an oral tracer dose of D3-creatine (1.0 mg/kg body weight) at 10 and 17 weeks of age. LC-MS/MS was used to determine urinary D3-creatine, and urinary D3-creatinine enrichment, at time intervals after D3-creatine administration. Total body creatine pool size was calculated from urinary D3-creatinine enrichment at isotopic steady state 72 h after administration of D3-creatine tracer.
At 10 weeks of age, rat lean body mass (LBM) measured by quantitative magnetic resonance correlated with creatine pool size (r = 0.92, P = 0.0002). Over the next 7 weeks, the decline in urinary D3-creatinine enrichment was slow and linear, with a rate constant of 2.73 ± 0.06 %/day. Subtracting background urinary D3-creatinine enrichment from the elevated enrichment following a second dose of D3-creatine at 17 weeks permitted repeat calculations of creatine pool size. As at 10 weeks, 17-week LBM correlated with creatine pool size (r = 0.98, P <0.0001). In addition, the change in creatine pool size was correlated with the change in LBM during the 7 weeks of rat growth between measurements (r = 0.96, P <0.0001).
The LC-MS/MS-based D3-creatine dilution method can be applied repeatedly to measure total body creatine skeletal muscle mass change in longitudinal study.
PMCID: PMC3774916  PMID: 23797207
Body composition; Total body skeletal muscle mass; Total body creatine pool size; Stable isotope dilution
15.  Ablation of TRIP-Br2, a novel regulator of fat lipolysis, thermogenesis and oxidative metabolism, prevents diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance 
Nature medicine  2013;19(2):217-226.
Obesity develops due to altered energy homeostasis favoring fat storage. Here we describe a novel transcription co-regulator for adiposity and energy metabolism, TRIP-Br2 (also called SERTAD2). TRIP-Br2 null mice are resistant to obesity and obesity-related insulin resistance. Adipocytes of the knockout (KO) mice exhibited greater stimulated lipolysis secondary to enhanced expression of hormone sensitive lipase (HSL) and β3-adrenergic (Adrb3) receptors. The KOs also exhibit higher energy expenditure due to increased adipocyte thermogenesis and oxidative metabolism by up-regulating key enzymes in respective processes. Our data show for the first time that a cell cycle transcriptional co-regulator, TRIP-Br2, modulates fat storage through simultaneous regulation of lipolysis, thermogenesis and oxidative metabolism. These data together with the observation that TRIP-BR2 expression is selectively elevated in visceral fat in obese humans suggests that this transcriptional co-regulator is a novel therapeutic target for counteracting the development of obesity, insulin resistance and hyperlipidemia.
PMCID: PMC3567215  PMID: 23291629
16.  A pilot study demonstrating a non-invasive method for the measurement of protein turnover in skin disorders: application to psoriasis 
Previous studies of epidermal kinetics in psoriasis have relied on invasive biopsy procedures or the use of radioactive labels. We previously developed a non-invasive method for measuring keratin synthesis in human skin using deuterated water labeling, serial collection of tape strips and measurement of deuterium enrichment in protein by mass spectrometry. This powerful method can be applied to measure other skin proteins and lipids collected by tape stripping. Here, for the first time, we apply this technique to investigate the epidermal kinetics of psoriasis, the first step in defining a kinetic profile for normal skin versus activated or quiescent psoriatic skin.
Psoriatic subjects were given 2H2O orally as twice-daily doses for 16–38 days. Affected and unaffected skin was sampled by tape stripping and washing (modified Pachtman method). Proteins were isolated from the tape strips by a method that enriches for keratin. Turnover times were determined by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. Kinetic data were compared to transepidermal water loss (TEWL).
Deuterium-labeled protein from lesional psoriatic skin appeared at the skin surface within 3–8 days of label administration, whereas labeled protein from non-lesional skin requires 10–20 days to appear. Psoriatic skin had similar rate of growth despite varying anatomic location. Proteins recovered from tape strips were identified by nanoscale liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry. Isolated peptides were >98% from keratin in uninvolved skin and >72% keratin in psoriatic skin. Revealing that one-quarter of all newly synthesized proteins in psoriatic skin are antimicrobial defense and other immune-related proteins. TEWL values were greater in lesional than non-lesional skin, suggesting barrier compromise in psoriatic skin despite increased clinical thickness.
This simple, elegant, and non-invasive method for measuring epidermal protein synthesis, which can also be adapted to measure epidermal lipids, provides a metric that may reveal new insights into the mechanisms and dynamic processes underlying psoriasis and may also provide an objective scale for determining response to therapeutic agents in pre-clinical and clinical trials. This opens a pathway to the non-invasive study of kinetics of protein formation in psoriasis or other skin diseases.
PMCID: PMC3689631  PMID: 23773261
Psoriasis; Kinetics; Keratin; Skin; Stable isotopes
17.  In Vivo Adipogenesis in Rats Measured by Cell Kinetics in Adipocytes and Plastic-Adherent Stroma-Vascular Cells in Response to High-Fat Diet and Thiazolidinedione 
Diabetes  2011;61(1):137-144.
Impairment of adipogenesis contributes to the development of obesity-related insulin resistance. The current in vitro approaches for its assessment represent crude estimates of the adipogenic potential because of the disruption of the in vivo microenvironment. A novel assessment of in vivo adipogenesis using the incorporation of the stable isotope deuterium (2H) into the DNA of isolated adipocytes and stroma-vascular fraction from adipose tissue has been developed. In the current study, we have refined this technique by purifying the adipocytes via a negative immune selection and sorting the plastic adherent stroma-vascular (aSV) subfraction (using 3 h culture) that contains mostly adipocyte progenitor cells and ∼10% of small adipocytes. Using a 3-week 8% 2H2O ingestion with a high-fat diet (HFD) or HFD plus pioglitazone (HFD-P), we demonstrate that the fractions of new aSV cells (faSV) and immunopurified adipocytes (fAD) (the ratio of their 2H-enrichment of DNA to the maximal 2H-enrichment of DNA of bone marrow reference cells) recapitulate the known hyperplastic mechanism of weight gain with pioglitazone treatment. We conclude that faSV and fAD are reliable indices of in vivo adipogenesis. The proposed method represents a valuable tool for studying the effect of interventions (drugs, diets, and exercise) on in vivo adipogenesis.
PMCID: PMC3237665  PMID: 22124466
18.  The Effect of Long Term Calorie Restriction on in Vivo Hepatic Proteostatis: A Novel Combination of Dynamic and Quantitative Proteomics 
Molecular & Cellular Proteomics : MCP  2012;11(12):1801-1814.
Calorie restriction (CR) promotes longevity. A prevalent mechanistic hypothesis explaining this effect suggests that protein degradation, including mitochondrial autophagy, is increased with CR, removing damaged proteins and improving cellular fitness. At steady state, increased catabolism must be balanced by increasing mitochondrial biogenesis and protein synthesis, resulting in faster protein replacement rates. To test this hypothesis, we measured replacement kinetics and relative concentrations of hundreds of proteins in vivo in long-term CR and ad libitum-fed mice using metabolic 2H2O-labeling combined with the Stable Isotope Labeling in Mammals protocol and LC-MS/MS analysis of mass isotopomer abundances in tryptic peptides. CR reduced absolute synthesis and breakdown rates of almost all measured hepatic proteins and prolonged the half-lives of most (∼80%), particularly mitochondrial proteins (but not ribosomal subunits). Proteins with related functions exhibited coordinated changes in relative concentration and replacement rates. In silico expression pathway interrogation allowed the testing of potential regulators of altered network dynamics (e.g. peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-alpha). In summary, our combination of dynamic and quantitative proteomics suggests that long-term CR reduces mitochondrial biogenesis and mitophagy. Our findings contradict the theory that CR increases mitochondrial protein turnover and provide compelling evidence that cellular fitness is accompanied by reduced global protein synthetic burden.
PMCID: PMC3518108  PMID: 22984287
19.  Cerebrospinal fluid–based kinetic biomarkers of axonal transport in monitoring neurodegeneration 
The Journal of Clinical Investigation  2012;122(9):3159-3169.
Progress in neurodegenerative disease research is hampered by the lack of biomarkers of neuronal dysfunction. We here identified a class of cerebrospinal fluid–based (CSF-based) kinetic biomarkers that reflect altered neuronal transport of protein cargo, a common feature of neurodegeneration. After a pulse administration of heavy water (2H2O), distinct, newly synthesized 2H-labeled neuronal proteins were transported to nerve terminals and secreted, and then appeared in CSF. In 3 mouse models of neurodegeneration, distinct 2H-cargo proteins displayed delayed appearance and disappearance kinetics in the CSF, suggestive of aberrant transport kinetics. Microtubule-modulating pharmacotherapy normalized CSF-based kinetics of affected 2H-cargo proteins and ameliorated neurodegenerative symptoms in mice. After 2H2O labeling, similar neuronal transport deficits were observed in CSF of patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) compared with non-PD control subjects, which indicates that these biomarkers are translatable and relevant to human disease. Measurement of transport kinetics may provide a sensitive method to monitor progression of neurodegeneration and treatment effects.
PMCID: PMC3428100  PMID: 22922254
20.  Desnutrin/ATGL is Regulated by AMPK and is Required for a Brown Adipose Phenotype 
Cell metabolism  2011;13(6):739-748.
While fatty acids (FAs) released by white adipose tissue (WAT) provide energy for other organs, lipolysis is also critical in brown adipose tissue (BAT), generating FAs for oxidation and UCP-1 activation for thermogenesis. Here, we show that adipose-specific ablation of desnutrin/ATGL in mice converts BAT to a WAT-like tissue. These mice exhibit severely impaired thermogenesis with increased expression of WAT-enriched genes but decreased BAT genes including UCP-1 with lower PPARα binding to its promoter, revealing the requirement of desnutrin-catalyzed lipolysis for maintaining BAT phenotype. We also show that desnutrin is phosphorylated by AMPK at S406, increasing TAG hydrolase activity, and provide evidence for increased lipolysis by AMPK phosphorylation of desnutrin in adipocytes and in vivo. Despite adiposity and impaired BAT function, desnutrin-ASKO mice have improved hepatic insulin sensitivity with lower DAG levels. Overall, desnutrin is phosphorylated/activated by AMPK to increase lipolysis and brings FA oxidation and UCP-1 induction for thermogenesis.
PMCID: PMC3148136  PMID: 21641555
21.  Intraclonal Complexity in Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia: Fractions Enriched in Recently Born/Divided and Older/Quiescent Cells 
Molecular Medicine  2011;17(11-12):1374-1382.
The failure of chemotherapeutic regimens to eradicate cancers often results from the outgrowth of minor subclones with more dangerous genomic abnormalities or with self-renewing capacity. To explore such intratumor complexities in B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), we measured B-cell kinetics in vivo by quantifying deuterium (2H)-labeled cells as an indicator of a cell that had divided. Separating CLL clones on the basis of reciprocal densities of chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 4 (CXCR4) and cluster designation 5 (CD5) revealed that the CXCR4dimCD5bright (proliferative) fraction contained more 2H-labeled DNA and hence divided cells than the CXCR4brightCD5dim (resting) fraction. This enrichment was confirmed by the relative expression of two cell cycle–associated molecules in the same fractions, Ki-67 and minichromosome maintenance protein 6 (MCM6). Comparisons of global gene expression between the CXCR4dimCD5bright and CXCR4brightCD5dim fractions indicated higher levels of pro-proliferation and antiapoptotic genes and genes involved in oxidative injury in the proliferative fraction. An extended immunophenotype was also defined, providing a wider range of surface molecules characteristic of each fraction. These intraclonal analyses suggest a model of CLL cell biology in which the leukemic clone contains a spectrum of cells from the proliferative fraction, enriched in recently divided robust cells that are lymphoid tissue emigrants, to the resting fraction enriched in older, less vital cells that need to immigrate to lymphoid tissue or die. The model also suggests several targets preferentially expressed in the two populations amenable for therapeutic attack. Finally, the study lays the groundwork for future analyses that might provide a more robust understanding of the development and clonal evolution of this currently incurable disease.
PMCID: PMC3321822  PMID: 21968788
22.  A Stable Isotope Method for the Simultaneous Measurement of Matrix Synthesis and Cell Proliferation in Articular Cartilage In Vivo 
Measurements of cell proliferation and matrix synthesis in cartilage explants have identified regulatory factors (e.g., interleukin 1, IL-1) that contribute to osteoarthritis and anabolic mediators (e.g., BMP-7) that may have therapeutic potential. The objective of this study was to develop a robust method for measuring cell proliferation and glycosaminoglycan synthesis in articular cartilage that could be applied in vivo.
A stable isotope-mass spectrometry approach was validated by measuring the metabolic effects of IL-1 and BMP-7 in cultures of mature and immature bovine cartilage explants. The method was also applied in vivo to quantify physiologic turnover rates of matrix and cells in the articular cartilage of normal rats. Heavy water was administered to explants in the culture medium and to rats via drinking water, and cartilage was analyzed for labeling of chondroitin sulfate (CS), hyaluronic acid (HA) and DNA.
As expected, IL-1 inhibited the synthesis of DNA and CS in cartilage explants. However, IL-1 inhibited HA synthesis only in immature cartilage. Futhermore, BMP-7 was generally stimulatory, but immature cartilage was significantly more responsive than mature cartilage, particularly in terms of HA and DNA synthesis. In vivo, labeling of CS and DNA in normal rats for up to a year indicated half-lives of 22 and 862 days, respectively, in the joint.
We describe a method by which deuterium from heavy water is traced into multiple metabolites from a single cartilage specimen to profile its metabolic activity. This method was demonstrated in tissue culture and rodents but may have significant clinical applications.
PMCID: PMC2763636  PMID: 19230856
23.  AdPLA ablation increases lipolysis and prevents obesity induced by high fat feeding or leptin deficiency 
Nature medicine  2009;15(2):159-168.
A main function of white adipose tissue is to release fatty acids from triacylglycerol for other tissues to use as an energy source. While endocrine regulation of lipolysis has been extensively studied, autocrine/paracrine regulation is not well understood. Here, we describe the role of AdPLA, the newly identified major adipocyte phospholipase A2, in the regulation of lipolysis and adiposity. AdPLA null mice have a markedly higher rate of lipolysis, due to increased cAMP levels arising from the marked reduction in adipose PGE2 that binds the Gαi-coupled receptor, EP3. AdPLA null mice have drastically reduced adipose tissue mass and triglyceride content, with normal adipogenesis. They also have higher energy expenditure with higher fatty acid oxidation within adipocytes. AdPLA deficient ob/ob mice remain hyperphagic but lean, with increased energy expenditure, yet have ectopic triglyceride storage and insulin resistance. AdPLA is a major regulator of adipocyte lipolysis and critical for the development of obesity.
PMCID: PMC2863116  PMID: 19136964
24.  Adipose Overexpression of Desnutrin Promotes Fatty Acid Use and Attenuates Diet-Induced Obesity 
Diabetes  2009;58(4):855-866.
To investigate the role of desnutrin in adipose tissue triacylglycerol (TAG) and fatty acid metabolism.
We generated transgenic mice overexpressing desnutrin (also called adipose triglyceride lipase [ATGL]) in adipocytes (aP2-desnutrin) and also performed adenoviral-mediated overexpression of desnutrin in 3T3-L1CARΔ1 adipocytes.
aP2-desnutrin mice were leaner with decreased adipose tissue TAG content and smaller adipocyte size. Overexpression of desnutrin increased lipolysis but did not result in increased serum nonesterified fatty acid levels or ectopic TAG storage. We found increased cycling between diacylglycerol (DAG) and TAG and increased fatty acid oxidation in adipocytes from these mice, as well as improved insulin sensitivity.
We show that by increasing lipolysis, desnutrin overexpression causes reduced adipocyte TAG content and attenuation of diet-induced obesity. Desnutrin-mediated lipolysis promotes fatty acid oxidation and re-esterification within adipocytes.
PMCID: PMC2661591  PMID: 19136649
25.  Centrosomal PKCβII and pericentrin are critical for human prostate cancer growth and angiogenesis 
Cancer research  2008;68(16):6831-6839.
Angiogenesis is critical in the progression of prostate cancer. However, the interplay between the proliferation kinetics of tumor endothelial cells (angiogenesis) and tumor cells has not been investigated. Also, protein kinase C (PKC) regulates various aspects of tumor cell growth but its role in prostate cancer has not been investigated in detail. Here, we found that the proliferation rates of endothelial and tumor cells oscillate asynchronously during the growth of human prostate cancer xenografts. Furthermore, our analyses suggest that PKCβII was activated during increased angiogenesis and that PKCβII plays a key role in the proliferation of endothelial cells and tumor cells in human prostate cancer; treatment with a PKCβII-selective inhibitor, βIIV5-3, reduced angiogenesis and tumor cell proliferation. We also find a unique effect of PKCβII inhibition on normalizing pericentrin (a protein regulating cytokinesis), especially in endothelial cells as well as in tumor cells. PKCβII inhibition reduced the level and mislocalization of pericentrin and normalized microtubule organization in the tumor endothelial cells. Although pericentrin has been known to be upregulated in epithelial cells of prostate cancers, its level in tumor endothelium has not been studied in detail. We found that pericentrin is upregulated in human tumor endothelium compared with endothelium adjacent to normal glands in tissues from prostate cancer patients. Our results suggest that a PKCβII inhibitor such as βIIV5-3 may be used to reduce prostate cancer growth by targeting both angiogenesis and tumor cell growth.
PMCID: PMC2597632  PMID: 18701509

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