Clarification of the pathogenesis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders is one of the challenges today. In this study, we examine scalp hair concentrations of 26 trace elements for 1,967 children with autistic disorders (1,553 males and 414 females). Five-hundred and eighty-four (29.7%), 347 (17.6%) and 114 (5.8%) subjects was found deficient in zinc, magnesium and calcium, respectively, and 2.0% or less in the other essential metals. The incidence rate of mineral deficiency was highly observed in infants aged 0-3 year-old. In contrast, 339 (17.2%), 168 (8.5%) and 94 (4.8%) individuals was found suffering from high burden of aluminium, cadmium and lead, and 2.8% or less from mercury and arsenic burden. These findings suggest that infantile zinc- and magnesium-deficiency and/or toxic metal burdens may epigenetically play principal roles as environmental factors in autistic disorders and that metallomics approach may lead to early screening and prevention of the neurodevelopment disorders.
Elucidation of the pathogenesis and effective treatment of autism spectrum disorders is one of the challenges today. In this study, we examine hair zinc concentrations for 1,967 children with autistic disorders (1,553 males and 414 females), and show considerable association with zinc deficiency. Histogram of hair zinc concentration was non-symmetric with tailing in lower range, and 584 subjects were found to have lower zinc concentrations than −2 standard deviation level of its reference range (86.3–193ppm). The incidence rate of zinc deficiency in infant group aged 0–3 year-old was estimated 43.5 % in male and 52.5 % in female. The lowest zinc concentration of 10.7 ppm was detected in a 2-year-old boy, corresponding to about 1/12 of the control mean level. These findings suggest that infantile zinc deficiency may epigenetically contribute to the pathogenesis of autism and nutritional approach may yield a novel hope for its treatment and prevention.
The objective of this metallomics study is to investigate comprehensively some relationships between cancer risk and minerals, including essential and toxic metals.
Twenty-four minerals including essential and toxic metals in scalp hair samples from 124 solid-cancer patients and 86 control subjects were measured with inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), and the association of cancer with minerals was statistically analyzed with multiple logistic regression analysis.
Multiple logistic regression analysis demonstrated that several minerals are significantly correlated to cancer, positively or inversely. The most cancer-correlated mineral was iodine (I) with the highest correlation coefficient of r = 0.301, followed by arsenic (As; r = 0.267), zinc (Zn; r = 0.261), and sodium (Na; r = 0.190), with p < 0.01 for each case. In contrast, selenium (Se) was inversely correlated to cancer (r = −0.161, p < 0.05), followed by vanadium (V) (r = −0.128). Multiple linear regression value was highly significantly correlated with probability of cancer (R2 = 0.437, p < 0.0001), and the area under the receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve was calculated to be 0.918. In addition, using contingency table analysis and the chi-square test, the precision of discrimination for cancer was estimated to be 0.871 (chi-square = 99.1, p < 0.0001).
These findings suggest that some minerals such as arsenic, selenium, and probably iodine, zinc, sodium, and vanadium contribute to regulation of cancer and also that metallomics study using multiple logistic regression analysis is a useful tool for estimating cancer risk.
Cancer; Metallomics; Arsenic; Selenium; Multiple logistic regression analysis
Cortical surface evoked potentials (SEPs) are larger during sleep and characterize a sleep-like state in cortical columns. Since tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF) may be involved in sleep regulation and is produced as a consequence of waking activity, we tested the hypothesis that direct application of TNF to the cortex will induce a sleep-like state within cortical columns and enhance SEP amplitudes. We found that microinjection of TNF onto the surface of the somatosensory cortex enhanced whisker stimulation-induced SEP amplitude relative to a control heat-inactivated TNF microinjection. We also determined if whisker stimulation enhanced endogenous TNF expression. TNF immunoreactivity (IR) was visualized after 2 h of bilateral deflection of a single whisker bilaterally. The number of TNF-IR cells increased in layers II–IV of the activated somatosensory barrel column. In two separate studies, unilateral deflection of multiple whiskers for 2 h increased the number of TNF-IR cells in layers II–V in columns that also exhibited enhanced Fos-IR. TNF-IR also colocalized with NeuN-IR suggesting that TNF expression was in neurons. Collectively these data are consistent with the hypotheses that TNF is produced in response to neural activity and in turn enhances the probability of a local sleep-like state as determined by increases in SEP amplitudes.
barrel field; evoked response potentials; surface evoked potentials; local sleep; cortical columns; cytokine
Two patients with mucosal cancer of the periampullary region were treated with papillocholedochectomy,
which entails removal of the papilla of Vater and the whole length of the common bile duct. The neoplasm is dissected out through the plane between the duodenal circular and longitudinal muscles, deep to the sphincter of Oddi and the fibromuscular layer of the bile duct. Pathological examination showed that cancer was confined to the mucosal layer without stromal invasion, and that the operation achieved radical cure. For mucosal cancer, papillo-choledochectomy is
an alternative to pancreatoduodenectomy, provided that repeated frozen-section studies confirm the
completeness of excision.
The human genome sequence defines our inherent biological potential; the realization of the biology encoded therein requires knowledge of the function of each gene. Currently, our knowledge in this area is still limited. Several lines of investigation have been used to elucidate the structure and function of the genes in the human genome. Even so, gene prediction remains a difficult task, as the varieties of transcripts of a gene may vary to a great extent. We thus performed an exhaustive integrative characterization of 41,118 full-length cDNAs that capture the gene transcripts as complete functional cassettes, providing an unequivocal report of structural and functional diversity at the gene level. Our international collaboration has validated 21,037 human gene candidates by analysis of high-quality full-length cDNA clones through curation using unified criteria. This led to the identification of 5,155 new gene candidates. It also manifested the most reliable way to control the quality of the cDNA clones. We have developed a human gene database, called the H-Invitational Database (H-InvDB; http://www.h-invitational.jp/). It provides the following: integrative annotation of human genes, description of gene structures, details of novel alternative splicing isoforms, non-protein-coding RNAs, functional domains, subcellular localizations, metabolic pathways, predictions of protein three-dimensional structure, mapping of known single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), identification of polymorphic microsatellite repeats within human genes, and comparative results with mouse full-length cDNAs. The H-InvDB analysis has shown that up to 4% of the human genome sequence (National Center for Biotechnology Information build 34 assembly) may contain misassembled or missing regions. We found that 6.5% of the human gene candidates (1,377 loci) did not have a good protein-coding open reading frame, of which 296 loci are strong candidates for non-protein-coding RNA genes. In addition, among 72,027 uniquely mapped SNPs and insertions/deletions localized within human genes, 13,215 nonsynonymous SNPs, 315 nonsense SNPs, and 452 indels occurred in coding regions. Together with 25 polymorphic microsatellite repeats present in coding regions, they may alter protein structure, causing phenotypic effects or resulting in disease. The H-InvDB platform represents a substantial contribution to resources needed for the exploration of human biology and pathology.
An international team has systematically validated and annotated just over 21,000 human genes using full-length cDNA, thereby providing a valuable new resource for the human genetics community
Purpose: Exposure to heavy-ion radiation is considered a critical health risk on long-term space missions. The developing central nervous system (CNS) is a highly radiosensitive tissue; however, the biological effects of heavy-ion radiation, which are greater than those of low-linear energy transfer (LET) radiation, are not well studied, especially in vivo in intact organisms. Here, we examined the effects of iron-ions on the developing CNS using vertebrate organism, fish embryos of medaka (Oryzias latipes).
Materials and methods: Medaka embryos at developmental stage 28 were irradiated with iron-ions at various doses of 0-1.5 Gy. At 24 h after irradiation, radiation-induced apoptosis was examined using an acridine orange (AO) assay and histo-logically. To estimate the relative biological effectiveness (RBE), we quantified only characteristic AO-stained rosette-shaped apoptosis in the developing optic tectum (OT). At the time of hatching, morphological abnormalities in the irradiated brain were examined histologically.
Results: The dose-response curve utilizing an apoptotic index for the iron-ion irradiated embryos was much steeper than that for X-ray irradiated embryos, with RBE values of 3.7-4.2. Histological examinations of irradiated medaka brain at 24 h after irradiation showed AO-positive rosette-shaped clusters as aggregates of condensed nuclei, exhibiting a circular hole, mainly in the marginal area of the OT and in the retina. However, all of the irradiated embryos hatched normally without apparent histological abnormalities in their brains.
Conclusion: Our present study indicates that the medaka embryo is a useful model for evaluating neurocytotoxic effects on the developing CNS induced by exposure to heavy iron-ions relevant to the aerospace radiation environment.
High-LET radiation; apoptosis; embryonic brain; medaka; relative biological effectiveness (RBE)
Osterix (Osx) is an osteoblast-specific transcription factor which is essential for bone formation. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been previously shown to be involved in osteogenesis. However, it is unclear whether Osx is involved in the regulation of miRNA expression. In this study, we have identified groups of miRNAs that are differentially expressed in calvaria of the E18.5 Osx−/− embryos compared to wild type embryos. The correlation between the levels of miRNAs and Osx expression was further verified in cultured M-Osx cells in which over-expression of Osx is inducible. Our results suggest that Osx down-regulates expression of a group of miRNAs including mir-133a and -204/211, but up-regulates expression of another group of miRNAs such as mir-141/200a. Mir-133a and -204/211 are known to target the master osteogenic transcription factor Runx2. Further assays suggest that Sost, which encodes the Wnt signaling antagonist Sclerostin, and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) are two additional targets of mir-204/211. Mir-141/200a has been known to target the transcription factor Dlx5. Thus, we postulate that during the process of Osx-controlled osteogenesis, Osx has the ability to coordinately modulate Runx2, Sclerostin, ALP and Dlx5 proteins at levels appropriate for optimal osteoblast differentiation and function, at least in part, through regulation of specific miRNAs. Our study shows a tight correlation between Osx and the miRNAs involved in bone formation, and provides new information about molecular mechanisms of Osx-controlled osteogenesis.
Nerve injury and consequent inflammatory responses produced by surgical incision result in a complicated pain status which still affects half of all surgical patients. Therefore, it is essential for anesthesiologists to identify the mechanisms of postoperative pain. Mast cells are resident cells of connective tissue and the mucosa that participate in the immune response. Degranulation of mast cells is involved in the development of postoperative pain and can be induced by surgical incision. The aim of this study was to investigate whether stabilization of mast cells causes an antinociceptive effect in a mouse model of postoperative pain.
Postoperative pain was induced by making an incision in the hind paw of BALB/c mice. The mast cell membrane stabilizer cromoglycate (200 μg/20 μL) was injected before incision of the paw, and postoperative pain responses were measured by assessing guarding behavior, withdrawal threshold to mechanical stimuli, and latency of heat pain behavior 1, 2, and 7 days after the incision.
The incision produced guarding pain, mechanical allodynia, and heat hypersensitivity. Cromoglycate decreased the guarding pain score (day 1) and the withdrawal threshold to mechanical stimuli (days 1, 2, and 7). However, the withdrawal latency to heat was not affected by cromoglycate treatment.
Cromoglycate significantly attenuated the pain response expressed as guarding pain and mechanical allodynia in a mouse model of postoperative pain. Thus, mast cell activation is likely a mechanism of postoperative pain and is an interesting target for the development of new therapies.
postoperative pain; mast cells; cromoglycate
To examine the global prevalence and major risk factors for diabetic retinopathy (DR) and vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy (VTDR) among people with diabetes.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
A pooled analysis using individual participant data from population-based studies around the world was performed. A systematic literature review was conducted to identify all population-based studies in general populations or individuals with diabetes who had ascertained DR from retinal photographs. Studies provided data for DR end points, including any DR, proliferative DR, diabetic macular edema, and VTDR, and also major systemic risk factors. Pooled prevalence estimates were directly age-standardized to the 2010 World Diabetes Population aged 20–79 years.
A total of 35 studies (1980–2008) provided data from 22,896 individuals with diabetes. The overall prevalence was 34.6% (95% CI 34.5–34.8) for any DR, 6.96% (6.87–7.04) for proliferative DR, 6.81% (6.74–6.89) for diabetic macular edema, and 10.2% (10.1–10.3) for VTDR. All DR prevalence end points increased with diabetes duration, hemoglobin A1c, and blood pressure levels and were higher in people with type 1 compared with type 2 diabetes.
There are approximately 93 million people with DR, 17 million with proliferative DR, 21 million with diabetic macular edema, and 28 million with VTDR worldwide. Longer diabetes duration and poorer glycemic and blood pressure control are strongly associated with DR. These data highlight the substantial worldwide public health burden of DR and the importance of modifiable risk factors in its occurrence. This study is limited by data pooled from studies at different time points, with different methodologies and population characteristics.
Sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) causes hypoxemia, negative intrathoracic pressure, and frequent arousal, contributing to increased cardiovascular disease mortality and morbidity. Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) is linked to hypertension, ischemic heart disease, and cardiac arrhythmias. Successful continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment has a beneficial effect on hypertension and improves the survival rate of patients with cardiovascular disease. Thus, long-term compliance with CPAP treatment may result in substantial blood pressure reduction in patients with resistant hypertension suffering from OSAS.
Central sleep apnea and Cheyne-Stokes respiration occur in 30–50% of patients with heart failure (HF). Intermittent hypoxemia, nocturnal surges in sympathetic activity, and increased left ventricular preload and afterload due to negative intrathoracic pressure all lead to impaired cardiac function and poor life prognosis. SDB-related HF has been considered the potential therapeutic target. CPAP, nocturnal O2 therapy, and adaptive servoventilation minimize the effects of sleep apnea, thereby improving cardiac function, prognosis, and quality of life. Early diagnosis and treatment of SDB will yield better therapeutic outcomes for hypertension and HF.
B cells infected by Epstein-Barr-Virus (EBV), a transforming virus endemic in humans, are rapidly cleared by the immune system, but some cells harboring the virus persist for life. Under conditions of immunosuppression EBV can spread from these cells and cause life threatening pathologies. We have generated mice expressing the transforming EBV latent membrane protein 1 (LMP1), mimicking a constitutively active CD40 coreceptor, specifically in B cells. Like human EBV infected cells, LMP1+ B cells were efficiently eliminated by T cells, and breaking immune surveillance resulted in rapid, fatal lymphoproliferation and lymphomagenesis. The lymphoma cells expressed ligands for a natural killer (NK) cell receptor, NKG2D, and could be targeted by an NKG2D-Fc fusion protein. These experiments indicate a central role for LMP1 in the surveillance and transformation of EBV infected B cells in vivo, establish a pre-clinical model for B cell lymphomagenesis in immunosuppressed patients, and validate a novel therapeutic approach.
The uterine endometrial polyp (EMP) has a potential risk of developing malignant tumors especially in postmenopausal women. These malignancies include endometrial intraepithelial carcinoma (EIC).
Patients and methods
Eight patients with EIC in the EMP, who were postmenopausal with ages ranging from 49 to 76 years (av. 62), were cytologically reviewed in comparison with histological findings.
The endometrial cytological findings were summarized as follows: mucous and watery diathesis as a background lacking or with little necrotic inflammatory changes; micropapillary cluster formation; abrupt transition between carcinoma cells and normal cells; nuclear enlargement; high N/C ratio; and single or a few prominent nucleoli. Histologically, one case had EIC alone in the EMP; three cases had EIC with stromal invasion confined to the EMP; and four cases had EIC in the atrophic endometrium in addition to EIC in the EMP. Seven patients have taken a disease-free course after surgical resection, but one patient died 44 months following the initial diagnosis because of the massive tumor extending over her peritoneal cavity.
Endometrial cytology may be helpful for the detection of early endometrial adenocarcinomas with serous features including EIC. Some early stage endometrial adenocarcinomas represented by EIC exceptionally take an aggressive clinical course irrespective of a lack of extrauterine lesions.
The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/1651876760876449
Endometrial intraepithelial carcinoma (EIC); Endometrial polyp; Cytology
We understand the world by making saccadic eye movements to various objects. However, it is unclear how a saccade can be aimed at a particular object, because two kinds of visual information, what the object is and where it is, are processed separately in the dorsal and ventral visual cortical pathways. Here we provide evidence suggesting that a basal ganglia circuit through the tail of the monkey caudate nucleus (CDt) guides such object-directed saccades. First, many CDt neurons responded to visual objects depending on where and what the objects were. Second, electrical stimulation in the CDt induced saccades whose directions matched the preferred directions of neurons at the stimulation site. Third, many CDt neurons increased their activity before saccades directed to the neurons’ preferred objects and directions in a free-viewing condition. Our results suggest that CDt neurons receive both ‘what’ and ‘where’ information and guide saccades to visual objects.
The formation of epithelial tissues requires both the generation of apical-basal polarity and the co-ordination of this polarity between neighboring cells to form a central lumen. During de novo lumen formation, vectorial membrane transport contributes to formation of a singular apical membrane, resulting in contribution of each cell to only a single lumen. Here, from a functional screen for genes required for 3D epithelial architecture we identify key roles for Synaptotagmin-like proteins 2-a and 4-a (Slp2-a/4-a) in generation of a single apical surface per cell. Slp2-a localizes to the luminal membrane in a PI(4,5)P2-dependent manner, where it targets Rab27-loaded vesicles to initiate a single lumen. Vesicle tethering and fusion is controlled by Slp4-a, in conjunction with Rab27/Rab3/Rab8 and the SNARE Syntaxin-3. Together, Slp2-a/4-a co-ordinate the spatiotemporal organization of vectorial apical transport to ensure only a single apical surface, and thus formation of a single lumen, occurs per cell.
Cell polarity; epithelial morphogenesis; Rab GTPases; phosphoinositides; vesicle trafficking; lumen formation; synaptotagmin-like proteins
Omega-3 fatty acids, which are found abundantly in fish oil, exert pleiotropic cardiometabolic effects with a diverse range of actions. The results of previous studies raised a lot of interest in the role of fish oil and omega-3 fatty acids in primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular diseases. The present review will focus on the current clinical uses of omega-3 fatty acids and provide an update on their effects. Since recently published trials in patients with coronary artery diseases or post-myocardial infarction did not show an effect of omega-3 fatty acids on major cardiovascular endpoints, this review will examine the limitations of those data and suggest recommendations for the use of omega-3 fatty acids.
Fish oils; Cardiovascular disease
Dendritic spines, small bulbous postsynaptic compartments emanating from neuronal dendrites, have been thought to serve as basic units of memory storage. Despite their small size (~0.1 femtoliter), thousands of species of proteins exist in the spine, including receptors, channels, scaffolding proteins and signaling enzymes. Biochemical signaling mediated by these molecules leads to morphological and functional plasticity of dendritic spines, and ultimately learning and memory in the brain. Here, we review new insights into the mechanisms underlying spine plasticity brought about by recent advances in imaging techniques to monitor molecular events in single dendritic spines. The activity of each protein displays a specific spatiotemporal pattern, coordinating downstream events at different microdomains to change the function and morphology of dendritic spines.
Respiratory virus infections, including infections with rhinoviruses (RVs), are related to exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). A new quinolone antibiotic, levofloxacin (LVFX), has been used to treat bacterial infections that cause COPD exacerbations as well as bacterial infections that are secondary to viral infection in COPD patients. However, the inhibitory effects of LVFX on RV infection and RV infection-induced airway inflammation have not been studied. We examined the effects of LVFX on type 14 rhinovirus (RV14) (a major human RV) infection of human tracheal epithelial cells pretreated with LVFX. LVFX pretreatment reduced the RV14 titer, the level of cytokines in the supernatant, the amount of RV14 RNA in the cells after RV14 infection, and the cells' susceptibility to RV14 infection. LVFX pretreatment decreased the mRNA level of intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1), a receptor for RV14, in the cells and the concentration of the soluble form of ICAM-1 in the supernatant before RV14 infection. LVFX pretreatment also decreased the number and the fluorescence intensity of the acidic endosomes from which RV14 RNA enters the cytoplasm. LVFX pretreatment inhibited the activation of nuclear factor κB proteins, including p50 and p65, in nuclear extracts. LVFX pretreatment did not reduce the titers of RV2 (a minor human RV) but reduced the titers of RV15 (a major human RV). These results suggest that LVFX inhibits major-group rhinovirus infections in part by reducing ICAM-1 expression levels and the number of acidic endosomes. LVFX may also modulate airway inflammation in rhinoviral infections.
We demonstrate that a vibration-induced air inflow can cause vigorous bubbling in a bed of fine particles and report the mechanism by which this phenomenon occurs. When convective flow occurs in a powder bed as a result of vibrations, the upper powder layer with a high void ratio moves downward and is compressed. This process forces the air in the powder layer out, which leads to the formation of bubbles that rise and eventually burst at the top surface of the powder bed. A negative pressure is created below the rising bubbles. A narrow opening at the bottom allows the outside air to flow into the powder bed, which produces a vigorously bubbling fluidized bed that does not require the use of an external air supply system.
A double-network (DN) gel, which is composed of poly(2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulfonic acid) and poly(N,N’-dimethyl acrylamide), can induce hyaline cartilage regeneration in vivo in a large osteochondral defect. The purpose of this study was to clarify the influence of the thickness of the implanted DN gel on the induction ability of hyaline cartilage regeneration.
Thirty-eight mature rabbits were used in this study. We created an osteochondral defect having a diameter of 4.3-mm in the patellofemoral joint. The knees were randomly divided into 4 groups (Group I: 0.5-mm thick gel, Group II: 1.0-mm thick gel, Group III: 5.0-mm thick gel, and Group IV: untreated control). Animals in each group were further divided into 3 sub-groups depending on the gel implant position (2.0-, 3.0-, or 4.0-mm depth from the articular surface) in the defect. The regenerated tissues were evaluated with the Wayne’s gross and histological grading scales and real time PCR analysis of the cartilage marker genes at 4 weeks.
According to the total Wayne’s score, when the depth of the final vacant space was set at 2.0 mm, the scores in Groups I, II, and III were significantly greater than that Group IV (p < 0.05), although there were no significant differences between Groups I and IV at a 3.0-mm deep vacant space. The expression levels of type-2 collagen in Groups II and III were significantly higher (p < 0.05) than that in Group IV.
The 1.0-mm thick DN gel sheet had the same ability to induce hyaline cartilage regeneration as the 5.0-mm thick DN gel plug. However, the induction ability of the 0.5-mm thick sheet was significantly lower when compared with the 1.0-mm thick gel sheet. The 1.0-mm DN gel sheet is a promising device to establish a cell-free cartilage regeneration strategy that minimizes bone loss from the gel implantation.
Hyaline cartilage; Cartilage repair; Double-network hydrogel; Polymer
Although family studies and genome-wide association studies have shown that genetic factors play a role in glaucoma, it has been difficult to identify the specific genetic variants involved. We tested 669 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from the region of chromosome 2 that includes the GLC1B glaucoma locus for association with primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) and normal tension glaucoma (NTG) in the Japanese population. We performed a two-stage case-control study. The first cohort consisted of 123 POAG cases, 121 NTG cases and 120 controls: the second cohort consisted of 187 POAG cases, 286 NTG cases, and 271 controls. Out of six SNPs showing significant association with POAG in the first round screening, seven SNPs were tested in the second round. Rs678350 in the HK2 gene coding sequence showed significant allelic (p = 0.0027 in Stage Two, 2.7XE-4 in meta-analysis) association with POAG, and significant allelic (p = 4.7XE-4 in Stage Two, 1.0XE-5 in meta-analysis) association with NTG. Although alleles in the TMEM182 gene did not show significant association with glaucoma in the second round, subjects with the A/A allele in TMEM182 rs869833 showed worse visual field mean deviation (p = 0.01). Even though rs2033008 in the NCK2 gene coding sequence did not show significant association in the first round, it had previously shown association with NTG so it was tested for association with NTG in round 2 (p = 0.0053 in Stage Two). Immunohistochemistry showed that both HK2 and NCK2 are expressed in the retinal ganglion cell layer. Once multi-testing was taken into account, only HK2 showed significant association with POAG and NTG in Stage Two. Our data also support previous reports of NCK2 association with NTG, and raise questions about what role TMEM182 might play in phenotypic variability. Our data suggest that HK2 may play an important role in NTG in the Japanese population.
Osteoclasts are bone resorbing, multinucleate cells that differentiate from mononuclear macrophage/monocyte-lineage hematopoietic precursor cells. Although previous studies have revealed important molecular signals, how the bone resorptive functions of such cells are controlled in vivo remains less well characterized. Here, we visualized fluorescently labeled mature osteoclasts in intact mouse bone tissues using intravital multiphoton microscopy. Within this mature population, we observed cells with distinct motility behaviors and function, with the relative proportion of static – bone resorptive (R) to moving – nonresorptive (N) varying in accordance with the pathophysiological conditions of the bone. We also found that rapid application of the osteoclast-activation factor RANKL converted many N osteoclasts to R, suggesting a novel point of action in RANKL-mediated control of mature osteoclast function. Furthermore, we showed that Th17 cells, a subset of RANKL-expressing CD4+ T cells, could induce rapid N-to-R conversion of mature osteoclasts via cell-cell contact. These findings provide new insights into the activities of mature osteoclasts in situ and identify actions of RANKL-expressing Th17 cells in inflammatory bone destruction.
Ras is a signaling protein involved in a variety of cellular processes. Hence, studying Ras signaling with high spatiotemporal resolution is crucial to understanding the roles of Ras in many important cellular functions. Previously, fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM) of fluorescent resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based Ras activity sensors, FRas and FRas-F, have been demonstrated to be useful for measuring the spatiotemporal dynamics of Ras signaling in subcellular micro-compartments. However the predominantly nuclear localization of the sensors' acceptor has limited its sensitivity. Here, we have overcome this limitation and developed two variants of the existing FRas sensor with different affinities: FRas2-F (Kd∼1.7 µM) and FRas2-M (Kd∼0.5 µM). We demonstrate that, under 2-photon fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy, FRas2 sensors provide higher sensitivity compared to previous sensors in 293T cells and neurons.
Background: A RANKL-binding peptide WP9QY (W9) is known to inhibit osteoclastogenesis.
Results: W9 showed an anabolic effect on cortical bone in mice. W9 bound RANKL and differentiated osteoblasts with production of autocrine factors like BMP-4.
Conclusion: Signaling through RANKL is involved in part in the W9-induced osteoblast differentiation.
Significance: The RANKL pathway could be a novel mechanism in osteoblast differentiation.
To date, parathyroid hormone is the only clinically available bone anabolic drug. The major difficulty in the development of such drugs is the lack of clarification of the mechanisms regulating osteoblast differentiation and bone formation. Here, we report a peptide (W9) known to abrogate osteoclast differentiation in vivo via blocking receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB ligand (RANKL)-RANK signaling that we surprisingly found exhibits a bone anabolic effect in vivo. Subcutaneous administration of W9 three times/day for 5 days significantly augmented bone mineral density in mouse cortical bone. Histomorphometric analysis showed a decrease in osteoclastogenesis in the distal femoral metaphysis and a significant increase in bone formation in the femoral diaphysis. Our findings suggest that W9 exerts bone anabolic activity. To clarify the mechanisms involved in this activity, we investigated the effects of W9 on osteoblast differentiation/mineralization in MC3T3-E1 (E1) cells. W9 markedly increased alkaline phosphatase (a marker enzyme of osteoblasts) activity and mineralization as shown by alizarin red staining. Gene expression of several osteogenesis-related factors was increased in W9-treated E1 cells. Addition of W9 activated p38 MAPK and Smad1/5/8 in E1 cells, and W9 showed osteogenesis stimulatory activity synergistically with BMP-2 in vitro and ectopic bone formation. Knockdown of RANKL expression in E1 cells reduced the effect of W9. Furthermore, W9 showed a weak effect on RANKL-deficient osteoblasts in alkaline phosphatase assay. Taken together, our findings suggest that this peptide may be useful for the treatment of bone diseases, and W9 achieves its bone anabolic activity through RANKL on osteoblasts accompanied by production of several autocrine factors.
Bone; Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP); Mesenchymal Stem Cells; Osteoblasts; Peptides; Bidirectional Signaling; Coupling; Osteoclasts; RANK; RANKL