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1.  Hyperglycaemia and apoptosis of microglial cells in human septic shock 
Critical Care  2011;15(3):R131.
Introduction
The effect of hyperglycaemia on the brain cells of septic shock patients is unknown. The objective of this study was to evaluate the relationship between hyperglycaemia and apoptosis in the brains of septic shock patients.
Methods
In a prospective study of 17 patients who died from septic shock, hippocampal tissue was assessed for neuronal ischaemia, neuronal and microglial apoptosis, neuronal Glucose Transporter (GLUT) 4, endothelial inducible Nitric Oxide Synthase (iNOS), microglial GLUT5 expression, microglial and astrocyte activation. Blood glucose (BG) was recorded five times a day from ICU admission to death. Hyperglycaemia was defined as a BG 200 mg/dL g/l and the area under the BG curve (AUBGC) > 2 g/l was assessed.
Results
Median BG over ICU stay was 2.2 g/l. Neuronal apoptosis was correlated with endothelial iNOS expression (rho = 0.68, P = 0.04), while microglial apoptosis was associated with AUBGC > 2 g/l (rho = 0.70; P = 0.002). Neuronal and microglial apoptosis correlated with each other (rho = 0.69, P = 0.006), but neither correlated with the duration of septic shock, nor with GLUT4 and 5 expression. Neuronal apoptosis and ischaemia tended to correlate with duration of hypotension.
Conclusions
In patients with septic shock, neuronal apoptosis is rather associated with iNOS expression and microglial apoptosis with hyperglycaemia, possibly because GLUT5 is not downregulated. These data provide a mechanistic basis for understanding the neuroprotective effects of glycemic control.
doi:10.1186/cc10244
PMCID: PMC3218997  PMID: 21612615
2.  Modulation of B-cell endoplasmic reticulum calcium homeostasis by Epstein-Barr virus Latent Membrane Protein-1 
Molecular Cancer  2009;8:59.
Background
Calcium signaling plays an important role in B lymphocyte survival and activation, and is critically dependent on the inositol-1,4,5-tris-phosphate-induced release of calcium stored in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Calcium is accumulated in the ER by Sarco/Endoplasmic Reticulum Calcium ATPases (SERCA enzymes), and therefore these enzymes play an important role in ER calcium homeostasis and in the control of B of cell activation. Because Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) can immortalize B cells and contributes to lymphomagenesis, in this work the effects of the virus on SERCA-type calcium pump expression and calcium accumulation in the endoplasmic reticulum of B cells was investigated.
Results
Two Sarco-Endoplasmic Reticulum Calcium transport ATPase isoforms, the low Ca2+-affinity SERCA3, and the high Ca2+-affinity SERCA2 enzymes are simultaneously expressed in B cells. Latency type III infection of Burkitt's lymphoma cell lines with immortalization-competent virus expressing the full set of latency genes selectively decreased the expression of SERCA3 protein, whereas infection with immortalization-deficient virus that does not express the EBNA2 or LMP-1 viral genes was without effect. Down-modulation of SERCA3 expression could be observed upon LMP-1, but not EBNA2 expression in cells carrying inducible transgenes, and LMP-1 expression was associated with enhanced resting cytosolic calcium levels and increased calcium storage in the endoplasmic reticulum. Similarly to virus-induced B cell immortalisation, SERCA3 expression was also decreased in normal B cells undergoing activation and blastic transformation in germinal centers of lymph node follicles.
Conclusion
The data presented in this work indicate that EBV-induced immortalization leads to the remodelling of ER calcium homeostasis of B cells by LMP-1 that copies a previously unknown normal phenomenon taking place during antigen driven B cell activation. The functional remodelling of ER calcium homeostasis by down-regulation of SERCA3 expression constitutes a previously unknown mechanism involved in EBV-induced B cell immortalisation.
doi:10.1186/1476-4598-8-59
PMCID: PMC3098015  PMID: 19650915
3.  Altered Endoplasmic Reticulum Calcium Pump Expression during Breast Tumorigenesis 
Endoplasmic reticulum calcium homeostasis is involved in several essential cell functions including cell proliferation, protein synthesis, stress responses or secretion. Calcium uptake into the endoplasmic reticulum is performed by Sarco/Endoplasmic Reticulum Calcium ATPases (SERCA enzymes). In order to study endoplasmic reticulum calcium homeostasis in situ in mammary tissue, in this work SERCA3 expression was investigated in normal breast and in its benign and malignant lesions in function of the cell type, degree of malignancy, and histological and molecular parameters of the tumors. Our data indicate, that although normal breast acinar epithelial cells express SERCA3 abundantly, its expression is strongly decreased already in very early non-malignant epithelial lesions such as adenosis, and remains low in lobular carcinomas. Whereas normal duct epithelium expresses significant amounts of SERCA3, its expression is decreased in several benign ductal lesions, as well as in ductal adenocarcinoma. The loss of SERCA3 expression is correlated with Elston-Ellis grade, negative hormone receptor expression or triple negative status in ductal carcinomas. The concordance between decreased SERCA3 expression and several histological, as well as molecular markers of ductal carcinogenesis indicates that endoplasmic reticulum calcium homeostasis is remodeled during tumorigenesis in the breast epithelium.
doi:10.4137/BCBCR.S7481
PMCID: PMC3153116  PMID: 21863130
breast cancer; calcium signaling; endoplasmic reticulum; SERCA; calcium pump; ion transport
4.  Changes in CRH and ACTH Synthesis during Experimental and Human Septic Shock 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(11):e25905.
Context
The mechanisms of septic shock-associated adrenal insufficiency remain unclear. This study aimed at investigating the synthesis of corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) and vasopressin (AVP) by parvocellular neurons and the antehypophyseal expression of ACTH in human septic shock and in an experimental model of sepsis.
Objective
To test the hypothesis that ACTH secretion is decreased secondarily to alteration of CRH or AVP synthesis, we undertook a neuropathological study of the antehypophyseal system in patients who had died from septic shock and rats with experimental faecal peritonitis.
Methods
Brains obtained in 9 septic shock patients were compared to 10 nonseptic patients (controls). Parvocellular expression of AVP and CRH mRNA were evaluated by in situ hybridization. Antehypophyseal expression of ACTH, vasopressin V1b and CRH R1 receptors and parvocellular expression of iNOS in the PVN were evaluated by immunohistochemistry. The same experiments were carried out in a fecal peritonitis-induced model of sepsis. Data from septic rats with (n = 6) or without (n = 10) early death were compared to sham-operated (n = 8) animals.
Results
In patients and rats, septic shock was associated with a decreased expression of ACTH, unchanged expression of V1B receptor, CRHR1 and AVP mRNA, and increased expression of parvocellular iNOS compared to controls. Septic shock was also characterized by an increased expression of CRH mRNA in rats but not in patients, who notably had a greater duration of septic shock.
Conclusion
The present study suggests that in humans and in rats, septic shock is associated with decreased ACTH synthesis that is not compensated by its two natural secretagogues, AVP and CRH. One underlying mechanism might be increased expression of iNOS in hypothalamic parvocellular neurons.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0025905
PMCID: PMC3207830  PMID: 22073145

Results 1-4 (4)