Abstract: Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) infects over 150 million people worldwide. In most cases HCV infection becomes chronic, causing liver disease ranging from fibrosis to cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. HCV affects the cholesterol homeostasis and at the molecular level, every step of the virus life cycle is intimately connected to lipid metabolism. In this review, we present an update on the lipids and apolipoproteins that are involved in the HCV infectious cycle steps: entry, replication and assembly. Moreover, the result of the assembly process is a lipoviroparticle, which represents a peculiarity of hepatitis C virion. This review illustrates an example of an intricate virus-host interaction governed by lipid metabolism.
Abstract: We have previously shown that GFP-tagged human ABCG1 on the plasma membrane (PM) and in late endosomes (LE) mobilizes sterol on both sides of the membrane lipid bilayer, thereby increasing cellular cholesterol efflux to lipid surfaces. In the present study, we examined ABCG1-induced changes in membrane cholesterol distribution, organization, and mobility. ABCG1-GFP expression increased the amount of mobile, non-sphingomyelin(SM)-associated cholesterol at the PM and LE, but not the amount of SM-associated-cholesterol or SM. ABCG1-mobilized non-SM-associated-cholesterol rapidly cycled between the PM and LE and effluxed from the PM to extracellular acceptors, or, relocated to intracellular sites of esterification. ABCG1 increased detergent-soluble pools of PM and LE cholesterol, generated detergent-resistant, non-SM-associated PM cholesterol, and increased resistance to both amphotericin B-induced (cholesterol-mediated) and lysenin-induced (SM-mediated) cytolysis, consistent with altered organization of both PM cholesterol and SM. ABCG1 itself resided in detergent-soluble membrane domains. We propose that PM and LE ABCG1 residing at the phase boundary between ordered (Lo) and disordered (Ld) membrane lipid domains alters SM and cholesterol organization thereby increasing cholesterol flux between Lo and Ld, and hence, the amount of cholesterol available for removal by acceptors on either side of the membrane bilayer for either efflux or esterification.
Abstract: Myosin filaments in vertebrate striated muscle have a long roughly cylindrical backbone with cross-bridge projections on the surfaces of both halves except for a short central bare zone. In the middle of this central region the filaments are cross-linked by the M-band which holds them in a well-defined hexagonal lattice in the muscle A-band. During muscular contraction the M-band-defined rotation of the myosin filaments around their long axes influences the interactions that the cross-bridges can make with the neighbouring actin filaments. We can visualise this filament rotation by electron microscopy of thin cross-sections in the bare-region immediately adjacent to the M-band where the filament profiles are distinctly triangular. In the muscles of teleost fishes, the thick filament triangular profiles have a single orientation giving what we call the simple lattice. In other vertebrates, for example all the tetrapods, the thick filaments have one of two orientations where the triangles point in opposite directions (they are rotated by 60° or 180°) according to set rules. Such a distribution cannot be developed in an ordered fashion across a large 2D lattice, but there are small domains of superlattice such that the next-nearest neighbouring thick filaments often have the same orientation. We believe that this difference in the lattice forms can lead to different contractile behaviours. Here we provide a historical review, and when appropriate cite recent work related to the emergence of the simple and superlattice forms by examining the muscles of several species ranging back to primitive vertebrates and we discuss the functional differences that the two lattice forms may have.
Abstract: Dopaminergic neurons in Drosophila play critical roles in diverse brain functions such as motor control, arousal, learning, and memory. Using genetic and behavioral approaches, it has been firmly established that proper dopamine signaling is required for olfactory classical conditioning (e.g., aversive and appetitive learning). Dopamine mediates its functions through interaction with its receptors. There are two different types of dopamine receptors in Drosophila: D1-like (dDA1, DAMB) and D2-like receptors (DD2R). Currently, no study has attempted to characterize the role of DD2R in Drosophila learning and memory. Using a DD2R-RNAi transgenic line, we have examined the role of DD2R, expressed in dopamine neurons (i.e., the presynaptic DD2R autoreceptor), in larval olfactory learning. The function of postsynaptic DD2R expressed in mushroom body (MB) was also studied as MB is the center for Drosophila learning, with a function analogous to that of the mammalian hippocampus. Our results showed that suppression of presynaptic DD2R autoreceptors impairs both appetitive and aversive learning. Similarly, postsynaptic DD2R in MB neurons appears to be involved in both appetitive and aversive learning. The data confirm, for the first time, that DD2R plays an important role in Drosophila olfactory learning.
Abstract: Acyl-CoA:glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase (GPAT) and acyl-CoA: 1-acyl-glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase (AGPAT) are involved in the de novo synthesis of triacylglycerol (TAG) and glycerophospholipids. Many enzymes belonging to the GPAT/AGPAT family have recently been identified and their physiological or pathophysiological roles have been proposed. The roles of GPAT/AGPAT in the synthesis of TAG and obesity-related diseases were revealed through the identification of causative genes of these diseases or analyses of genetically manipulated animals. Recent studies have suggested that some isoforms of GPAT/AGPAT family enzymes are involved in the fatty acid remodeling of phospholipids. The enzymology of GPAT/AGPAT and their physiological/ pathological roles in the metabolism of glycerolipids have been described and discussed in this review.
Abstract: We have developed a suitable heterologous cell expression system to study the localization, trafficking, and site(s) of function of the human ABCG1 transporter. Increased plasma membrane (PM) and late endosomal (LE) cholesterol generated by ABCG1 was removed by lipoproteins and liposomes, but not apoA-I. Delivery of ABCG1 to the PM and LE was required for ABCG1-mediated cellular cholesterol efflux. ABCG1 LEs frequently contacted the PM, providing a collisional mechanism for transfer of ABCG1-mobilized cholesterol, similar to ABCG1-mediated PM cholesterol efflux to lipoproteins. ABCG1-mobilized LE cholesterol also trafficked to the PM by a non-vesicular pathway. Transfer of ABCG1-mobilized cholesterol from the cytoplasmic face of LEs to the PM and concomitant removal of cholesterol from the outer leaflet of the PM bilayer by extracellular acceptors suggests that ABCG1 mobilizes cholesterol on both sides of the lipid bilayer for removal by acceptors. ABCG1 increased uptake of HDL into LEs, consistent with a potential ABCG1-mediated cholesterol efflux pathway involving HDL resecretion. Thus, ABCG1 at the PM mobilizes PM cholesterol and ABCG1 in LE/LYS generates mobile pools of cholesterol that can traffic by both vesicular and non-vesicular pathways to the PM where it can also be transferred to extracellular acceptors with a lipid surface.