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author:("valle, Sabine")
1.  Visualization of X4- and R5-Tropic HIV-1 Viruses Expressing Fluorescent Proteins in Human Endometrial Cells: Application to Tropism Study 
PLoS ONE  2017;12(1):e0169453.
Worldwide most HIV infections occur through heterosexual transmission, involving complex interactions of cell-free and cell-associated particles with cells of the female genital tract mucosa. The ability of HIV-1 to “infect” epithelial cells remains poorly understood. To address this question, replicative-competent chimeric constructs expressing fluorescent proteins and harboring the envelope of X4- or R5-tropic HIV-1 strains were used to “infect” endometrial HEC1-A cells. The virus-cell interactions were visualized using confocal microscopy (CM) at various times post infection. Combined with quantification of viral RNA and total HIV DNA in infected cells, the CM pictures suggest that epithelial cells do not support a complete viral replication cycle: X4-tropic viruses are imported into the nucleus in a non-productive way, whereas R5-tropic viruses transit through the cytoplasm without replication and are preferentially transmitted to susceptible activated peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Within the limit of experiments conducted in vitro on a continued cell line, these results indicate that the epithelial mucosa may participate to the selection of HIV-1 strains at the mucosal level.
PMCID: PMC5218496  PMID: 28060897
2.  Role of Siglec-7 in Apoptosis in Human Platelets 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(9):e106239.
Platelets participate in tissue repair and innate immune responses. Sialic acid-binding immunoglobulin-like lectins (Siglecs) are well-characterized I-type lectins, which control apoptosis.
Methodology/Principal Findings
We characterized the expression of Siglec-7 in human platelets isolated from healthy volunteers using flow cytometry and confocal microscopy. Siglec-7 is primarily expressed on α granular membranes and colocalized with CD62P. Siglec-7 expression was increased upon platelet activation and correlated closely with CD62P expression. Cross-linking Siglec-7 with its ligand, ganglioside, resulted in platelet apoptosis without any significant effects on activation, aggregation, cell morphology by electron microscopy analysis or secretion. We show that ganglioside triggered four key pathways leading to apoptosis in human platelets: (i) mitochondrial inner transmembrane potential (ΔΨm) depolarization; (ii) elevated expression of pro-apoptotic Bax and Bak proteins with reduced expression of anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 protein; (iii) phosphatidylserine exposure and (iv), microparticle formation. Inhibition of NAPDH oxidase, PI3K, or PKC rescued platelets from apoptosis induced by Siglec-7 recruitment, suggesting that the platelet receptors P2Y1 and GPIIbIIIa are essential for ganglioside-induced platelet apoptosis.
The present work characterizes the role of Siglec-7 and platelet receptors in regulating apoptosis and death. Because some platelet pathology involves apoptosis (idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura and possibly storage lesions), Siglec-7 might be a molecular target for therapeutic intervention/prevention.
PMCID: PMC4167548  PMID: 25230315
3.  Testicular biodistribution of 450 nm fluorescent latex particles after intramuscular injection in mice 
Biomedical Microdevices  2013;15(3):427-436.
The significant expansion in the use of nanoparticles and submicron particles during the last 20 years has led to increasing concern about their potential toxicity to humans and particularly their impact on male fertility. Currently, an insufficient number of studies have focused on the testicular biodistribution of particles. The aim of our study was to assess the distribution of 450 nm fluorescent particles in mouse testes after intramuscular injection. To this end, testes were removed from 5 groups of 3 mice each at 1 h (H1), 4 days (D4), 21 days (D21), 45 days (D45) and 90 days (D90) after the injection of 7.28 × 109 particles in the tibialis anterior muscles of each mouse. We examined histological sections from these samples by epifluorescence microscopy and confocal microscopy and identified testicular biodistribution of a small number of particles in groups H1, D4, D21, D45 and D90. Using CD11b immunostaining, we showed that particles were not carried into the testis by macrophages. The intratesticular repartition of particles mainly followed testicular vascularization. Finally, we found some particles in seminiferous tubules but could not determine if the blood–testis barrier was crossed.
PMCID: PMC3916253  PMID: 23329290
Submicron particles; Mice; Testis; Tissue distribution; Intramuscular injections; Macrophages
4.  Extracellular Localization of the Diterpene Sclareol in Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea L., Lamiaceae) 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(10):e48253.
Sclareol is a high-value natural product obtained by solid/liquid extraction of clary sage (Salvia sclarea L.) inflorescences. Because processes of excretion and accumulation of this labdane diterpene are unknown, the aim of this work was to gain knowledge on its sites of accumulation in planta. Samples were collected in natura or during different steps of the industrial process of extraction (steam distillation and solid/liquid extraction). Samples were then analysed with a combination of complementary analytical techniques (gas chromatography coupled to a mass spectrometer, polarized light microscopy, environmental scanning electron microscopy, two-photon fluorescence microscopy, second harmonic generation microscopy). According to the literature, it is hypothesized that sclareol is localized in oil pockets of secretory trichomes. This study demonstrates that this is not the case and that sclareol accumulates in a crystalline epicuticular form, mostly on calyces.
PMCID: PMC3484996  PMID: 23133579
5.  Direct contact of platelets and their released products exert different effects on human dendritic cell maturation 
BMC Immunology  2008;9:54.
Dendritic cells (DCs) are antigen presenting cells capable of inducing innate and adaptive immune responses. According to the stimulus and their maturation state, DCs induce immunogenic or tolerogenic responses. Platelets (PLTs), which are involved in haemostasis and inflammation, can also interact with DCs. In this study, we examined the effect of PLTs on DC maturation in vitro. Human monocyte-derived DCs were co-cultured for 2 days with homologous PLTs either in the same well or in 0.4 μm-pore size filter-separated compartments.
Confocal microscopy showed the attachment of PLTs to DC membranes. The DC receptor involved in this interactions was found to be CD162. In addition, we observed that DCs co-cultured with PLTs in filter-separated compartments acquired a mature phenotype (high CD80, CD86, and intermediate CD83 expression; IL-12(p70) production; efficient stimulation of autologous CD4+ T cell proliferation), while DCs co-cultured with PLTs in the same compartment did not undergo phenotypic maturation, did not secrete IL-12(p70) or IL-1β, but instead induced moderate Th2-polarized T cell proliferation.
These data indicate that (i) PLTs secrete a soluble DC-activating factor that was demonstrated not to be soluble CD40-Ligand (CD154; as could have been expected from in vivo and previous in vitro work) but to be nucleotide, and (ii) that cell-to-cell contact did not induce DC maturation, possibly because nucleotide release by PLTs was prevented by direct contact with DCs. This work demonstrates that PLTs are active elements of the immune system that might play a role in balancing the ability of DCs to polarize T cell responses, therefore making them critical factors in transfusion processes.
PMCID: PMC2564901  PMID: 18817542

Results 1-5 (5)