Open AccessFeature PaperReview
The Yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a Model for Understanding RAS Proteins and their Role in Human Tumorigenesis
Cells 2018, 7(2), 14; doi:10.3390/cells7020014 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
The exploitation of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a biological model for the investigation of complex molecular processes conserved in multicellular organisms, such as humans, has allowed fundamental biological discoveries. When comparing yeast and human proteins, it is clear that both amino acid
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The exploitation of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a biological model for the investigation of complex molecular processes conserved in multicellular organisms, such as humans, has allowed fundamental biological discoveries. When comparing yeast and human proteins, it is clear that both amino acid sequences and protein functions are often very well conserved. One example of the high degree of conservation between human and yeast proteins is highlighted by the members of the RAS family. Indeed, the study of the signaling pathways regulated by RAS in yeast cells led to the discovery of properties that were often found interchangeable with RAS proto-oncogenes in human pathways, and vice versa. In this work, we performed an updated critical literature review on human and yeast RAS pathways, specifically highlighting the similarities and differences between them. Moreover, we emphasized the contribution of studying yeast RAS pathways for the understanding of human RAS and how this model organism can contribute to unveil the roles of RAS oncoproteins in the regulation of mechanisms important in the tumorigenic process, like autophagy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Linear Regression QSAR Models for Polo-Like Kinase-1 Inhibitors
Cells 2018, 7(2), 13; doi:10.3390/cells7020013 -
Abstract
A structurally diverse dataset of 530 polo-like kinase-1 (PLK1) inhibitors is compiled from the ChEMBL database and studied by means of a conformation-independent quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) approach. A large number (26,761) of molecular descriptors are explored with the main intention of capturing
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A structurally diverse dataset of 530 polo-like kinase-1 (PLK1) inhibitors is compiled from the ChEMBL database and studied by means of a conformation-independent quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) approach. A large number (26,761) of molecular descriptors are explored with the main intention of capturing the most relevant structural characteristics affecting the bioactivity. The structural descriptors are derived with different freeware, such as PaDEL, Mold2, and QuBiLs-MAS; such descriptor software complements each other and improves the QSAR results. The best multivariable linear regression models are found with the replacement method variable subset selection technique. The balanced subsets method partitions the dataset into training, validation, and test sets. It is found that the proposed linear QSAR model improves previously reported models by leading to a simpler alternative structure-activity relationship. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
MiRNAs at the Crossroads between Innate Immunity and Cancer: Focus on Macrophages
Cells 2018, 7(2), 12; doi:10.3390/cells7020012 -
Abstract
Innate immune cells form an integrative component of the tumor microenvironment (TME), which can control or prevent tumor initiation and progression, due to the simultaneous processing of both anti- and pro-growth signals. This decision-making process is a consequence of gene expression changes, which
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Innate immune cells form an integrative component of the tumor microenvironment (TME), which can control or prevent tumor initiation and progression, due to the simultaneous processing of both anti- and pro-growth signals. This decision-making process is a consequence of gene expression changes, which are in part dependent on post-transcriptional regulatory mechanisms. In this context, microRNAs have been shown to regulate both recruitment and activation of specific tumor-associated immune cells in the TME. This review aims to describe the most important microRNAs that target cancer-related innate immune pathways. The role of exosomal microRNAs in tumor progression and microRNA-based therapeutic strategies are also discussed. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Consequences of Lamin B1 and Lamin B Receptor Downregulation in Senescence
Cells 2018, 7(2), 11; doi:10.3390/cells7020011 -
Abstract
Anchoring of heterochromatin to the nuclear envelope appears to be an important process ensuring the spatial organization of the chromatin structure and genome function in eukaryotic nuclei. Proteins of the inner nuclear membrane (INM) mediating these interactions are able to recognize lamina-associated heterochromatin
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Anchoring of heterochromatin to the nuclear envelope appears to be an important process ensuring the spatial organization of the chromatin structure and genome function in eukaryotic nuclei. Proteins of the inner nuclear membrane (INM) mediating these interactions are able to recognize lamina-associated heterochromatin domains (termed LAD) and simultaneously bind either lamin A/C or lamin B1. One of these proteins is the lamin B receptor (LBR) that binds lamin B1 and tethers heterochromatin to the INM in embryonic and undifferentiated cells. It is replaced by lamin A/C with specific lamin A/C binding proteins at the beginning of cell differentiation and in differentiated cells. Our functional experiments in cancer cell lines show that heterochromatin in cancer cells is tethered to the INM by LBR, which is downregulated together with lamin B1 at the onset of cell transition to senescence. The downregulation of these proteins in senescent cells leads to the detachment of centromeric repetitive sequences from INM, their relocation to the nucleoplasm, and distension. In cells, the expression of LBR and LB1 is highly coordinated as evidenced by the reduction of both proteins in LBR shRNA lines. The loss of the constitutive heterochromatin structure containing LADs results in changes in chromatin architecture and genome function and can be the reason for the permanent loss of cell proliferation in senescence. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Optimization of Polycistronic Anti-CCR5 Artificial microRNA Leads to Improved Accuracy of Its Lentiviral Vector Transfer and More Potent Inhibition of HIV-1 in CD4+ T-Cells
Cells 2018, 7(2), 10; doi:10.3390/cells7020010 -
Abstract
C-C chemokine receptor type 5 (CCR5) is utilized by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) as a co-receptor for cell entry. Suppression of the CCR5 gene by artificial microRNAs (amiRNAs) could confer cell resistance. In previous work, we created a lentivector that encoded the polycistron
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C-C chemokine receptor type 5 (CCR5) is utilized by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) as a co-receptor for cell entry. Suppression of the CCR5 gene by artificial microRNAs (amiRNAs) could confer cell resistance. In previous work, we created a lentivector that encoded the polycistron of two identical amiRNAs that could effectively suppress CCR5. However, tandem repeats in lentiviral vectors led to deletions of the repeated sequences during reverse transcription of the vector RNA. To solve this problem, we have created a new amiRNA against CCR5, mic1002, which has a different microRNA scaffold and targets a different sequence. Replacing one of the two identical tandem amiRNAs in the polycistron with the mic1002 amiRNA increased the accuracy of its lentiviral vector transfer while retaining its ability to effectively suppress CCR5. A lentiviral vector containing two heterogenic amiRNAs significantly inhibited HIV replication in a vector-transduced human CD4+ lymphocyte culture. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperCommunication
Identification of Novel Hemangioblast Genes in the Early Chick Embryo
Cells 2018, 7(2), 9; doi:10.3390/cells7020009 -
Abstract
During early vertebrate embryogenesis, both hematopoietic and endothelial lineages derive from a common progenitor known as the hemangioblast. Hemangioblasts derive from mesodermal cells that migrate from the posterior primitive streak into the extraembryonic yolk sac. In addition to primitive hematopoietic cells, recent evidence
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During early vertebrate embryogenesis, both hematopoietic and endothelial lineages derive from a common progenitor known as the hemangioblast. Hemangioblasts derive from mesodermal cells that migrate from the posterior primitive streak into the extraembryonic yolk sac. In addition to primitive hematopoietic cells, recent evidence revealed that yolk sac hemangioblasts also give rise to tissue-resident macrophages and to definitive hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells. In our previous work, we used a novel hemangioblast-specific reporter to isolate the population of chick yolk sac hemangioblasts and characterize its gene expression profile using microarrays. Here we report the microarray profile analysis and the identification of upregulated genes not yet described in hemangioblasts. These include the solute carrier transporters SLC15A1 and SCL32A1, the cytoskeletal protein RhoGap6, the serine protease CTSG, the transmembrane receptor MRC1, the transcription factors LHX8, CITED4 and PITX1, and the previously uncharacterized gene DIA1R. Expression analysis by in situ hybridization showed that chick DIA1R is expressed not only in yolk sac hemangioblasts but also in particular intraembryonic populations of hemogenic endothelial cells, suggesting a potential role in the hemangioblast-derived hemogenic lineage. Future research into the function of these newly identified genes may reveal novel important regulators of hemangioblast development. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Fine Regulation of Neutrophil Oxidative Status and Apoptosis by Ceruloplasmin and Its Derivatives
Cells 2018, 7(1), 8; doi:10.3390/cells7010008 -
Abstract
Timely neutrophil apoptosis is an essential part of the resolution phase of acute inflammation. Ceruloplasmin, an acute-phase protein, which is the predominant copper-carrying protein in the blood, has been suggested to have a marked effect on neutrophil life span. The present work is
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Timely neutrophil apoptosis is an essential part of the resolution phase of acute inflammation. Ceruloplasmin, an acute-phase protein, which is the predominant copper-carrying protein in the blood, has been suggested to have a marked effect on neutrophil life span. The present work is a comparative study on the effects of intact holo-ceruloplasmin, its copper-free (apo-) and partially proteolyzed forms, and synthetic free peptides RPYLKVFNPR (883–892) and RRPYLKVFNPRR (882–893) on polymorphonuclear leukocyte (PMNL, neutrophil) oxidant status and apoptosis. The most pronounced effect on both investigated parameters was found with copper-containing samples, namely, intact and proteolyzed proteins. Both effectively reduced spontaneous and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α)-induced extracellular and intracellular accumulation of superoxide radicals, but induced a sharp increase in the oxidation of intracellular 2′,7′-dichlorofluorescein upon short exposure. Therefore, intact and proteolyzed ceruloplasmin have both anti- and pro-oxidant effects on PMNLs wherein the latter effect is diminished by TNF-α and lactoferrin. Additionally, all compounds investigated were determined to be inhibitors of delayed spontaneous apoptosis. Intact enzyme retained its pro-survival activity, whereas proteolytic degradation converts ceruloplasmin from a mild inhibitor to a potent activator of TNF-α-induced neutrophil apoptosis. Full article
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Open AccessEditorial
Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Cells in 2017
Cells 2018, 7(1), 6; doi:10.3390/cells7010006 -
Abstract
Peer review is an essential part in the publication process, ensuring that Cells maintains high quality standards for its published papers[...]
Full article
Open AccessArticle
Effect of shRNA Mediated Silencing of YB-1 Protein on the Expression of Matrix Collagenases in Malignant Melanoma Cell In Vitro
Cells 2018, 7(1), 7; doi:10.3390/cells7010007 -
Abstract
Background and Objective: YB-1 is a transcription and oncogenic factor capable of binding to DNA and RNA performing versatile functions within normal and cancer cells. Some studies reported the binding of YB-1 with a collagenases gene promoter and influencing their expression. In addition,
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Background and Objective: YB-1 is a transcription and oncogenic factor capable of binding to DNA and RNA performing versatile functions within normal and cancer cells. Some studies reported the binding of YB-1 with a collagenases gene promoter and influencing their expression. In addition, the role of YB-1 in malignant melanoma was not elucidated. Thus, in this study, the aim was to knock down the expression of YB-1 in A375 malignant melanoma cancer cell using the shRNA approach and study its effect on cancer cell proliferation, migration, and expression of collagenases. Methods: A375 malignant melanoma cell lines were grown in standard conditions and were transfected with three plasmids containing a retroviral pGFP-V-RS vector, two of them containing targeting sequences for YB-1 mRNA. The third plasmid contained a scrambled mRNA sequence as a negative control. Expression of YB-1 was validated using immune-fluorescence staining, RT-PCR and western blotting. The cancer cell proliferation was determined using MTT assay, serial trypan blue cell counting and cell cycle flow-cytometry analysis. Expression of collagenases (MMP1, MMP8, and MMP13) was evaluated using RT-PCR and western blotting analysis. In addition, a wound-healing assay was used to assess cell migration potential. Statistical analysis was performed using one-way ANOVA test with Bonferroni post hoc analysis to compare the quantitative results among samples. Results: The established silenced cell strains (P1 and P2) had nearly 70% knockdown in the expression of YB-1. These YB-1 silenced strains had a significant cell cycle-specific reduction in cell proliferation (p < 0.05 in serial cell counting and cell cycle flow cytometry analysis, p < 0.001 in MTT assay). In addition, YB-1 silenced strains had a remarkable reduction in cell migration potential. Expression of MMP13 was significantly reduced in YB-1 silenced strains. Conclusion: YB-1 oncoprotein is a promising target in the treatment of malignant melanoma. Silencing of this protein is associated with significant anti-proliferative, anti-invasive and MMP13 insulating properties in A375 malignant melanoma cancer cell lines. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Multiscale and Multimodal Approaches to Study Autophagy in Model Plants
Cells 2018, 7(1), 5; doi:10.3390/cells7010005 -
Abstract
Autophagy is a catabolic process used by eukaryotic cells to maintain or restore cellular and organismal homeostasis. A better understanding of autophagy in plant biology could lead to an improvement of the recycling processes of plant cells and thus contribute, for example, towards
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Autophagy is a catabolic process used by eukaryotic cells to maintain or restore cellular and organismal homeostasis. A better understanding of autophagy in plant biology could lead to an improvement of the recycling processes of plant cells and thus contribute, for example, towards reducing the negative ecological consequences of nitrogen-based fertilizers in agriculture. It may also help to optimize plant adaptation to adverse biotic and abiotic conditions through appropriate plant breeding or genetic engineering to incorporate useful traits in relation to this catabolic pathway. In this review, we describe useful protocols for studying autophagy in the plant cell, taking into account some specificities of the plant model. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Targeting FLT3 Mutations in Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Cells 2018, 7(1), 4; doi:10.3390/cells7010004 -
Abstract
The FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) pathway has an important role in cellular proliferation, survival, and differentiation. Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients with mutated FLT3 have a large disease burden at presentation and a dismal prognosis. A number of FLT3 inhibitors have been
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The FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) pathway has an important role in cellular proliferation, survival, and differentiation. Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients with mutated FLT3 have a large disease burden at presentation and a dismal prognosis. A number of FLT3 inhibitors have been developed over the years. The first-generation inhibitors are largely non-specific, while the second-generation inhibitors are more specific and more potent. These inhibitors are used to treat patients with FLT3-mutated AML in virtually all disease settings including induction, consolidation, maintenance, relapse, and after hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). In this article, we will review the use of FLT3 inhibitors in AML. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Reagent Tracker Dyes Permit Quality Control for Verifying Plating Accuracy in ELISPOT Tests
Cells 2018, 7(1), 3; doi:10.3390/cells7010003 -
Abstract
ELISPOT assays enable the detection of the frequency of antigen-specific T cells in the blood by measuring the secretion of cytokines, or combinations of cytokines, in response to antigenic challenges of a defined population of PBMC. As such, these assays are suited to
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ELISPOT assays enable the detection of the frequency of antigen-specific T cells in the blood by measuring the secretion of cytokines, or combinations of cytokines, in response to antigenic challenges of a defined population of PBMC. As such, these assays are suited to establish the magnitude and quality of T cell immunity in infectious, allergic, autoimmune and transplant settings, as well as for measurements of anti-tumor immunity. The simplicity, robustness, cost-effectiveness and scalability of ELISPOT renders it suitable for regulated immune monitoring. In response to the regulatory requirements of clinical and pre-clinical immune monitoring trials, tamper-proof audit trails have been introduced to all steps of ELISPOT analysis: from capturing the raw images of assay wells and counting of spots, to all subsequent quality control steps involved in count verification. A major shortcoming of ELISPOT and other related cellular assays is presently the lack of audit trails for the wet laboratory part of the assay, in particular, the assurance that no pipetting errors have occurred during the plating of antigens and cells. Here, we introduce a dye-based reagent tracking platform that fills this gap, thereby increasing the transparency and documentation of ELISPOT test results. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Red Blood Cells and Platelet Concentrates: From Bench to Bedside
Cells 2018, 7(1), 2; doi:10.3390/cells7010002 -
Abstract
Red blood cells and platelets are anucleate blood components indispensable for oxygen delivery and hemostasis, respectively. Derivation of these blood elements from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells has the potential to develop blood donor-independent and genetic manipulation-prone products to complement or replace current
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Red blood cells and platelets are anucleate blood components indispensable for oxygen delivery and hemostasis, respectively. Derivation of these blood elements from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells has the potential to develop blood donor-independent and genetic manipulation-prone products to complement or replace current transfusion banking, also minimizing the risk of alloimmunization. While the production of erythrocytes from iPS cells has challenges to overcome, such as differentiation into adult-type phenotype that functions properly after transfusion, platelet products are qualitatively and quantitatively approaching a clinically-applicable level owing to advances in expandable megakaryocyte (MK) lines, platelet-producing bioreactors, and novel reagents. Guidelines that assure the quality of iPS cells-derived blood products for clinical application represent a novel challenge for regulatory agencies. Considering the minimal risk of tumorigenicity and the expected significant demand of such products, ex vivo production of iPS-derived blood components can pave the way for iPS translation into the clinic. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Intra- and Intercellular Quality Control Mechanisms of Mitochondria
Cells 2018, 7(1), 1; doi:10.3390/cells7010001 -
Abstract
Mitochondria function to generate ATP and also play important roles in cellular homeostasis, signaling, apoptosis, autophagy, and metabolism. The loss of mitochondrial function results in cell death and various types of diseases. Therefore, quality control of mitochondria via intra- and intercellular pathways is
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Mitochondria function to generate ATP and also play important roles in cellular homeostasis, signaling, apoptosis, autophagy, and metabolism. The loss of mitochondrial function results in cell death and various types of diseases. Therefore, quality control of mitochondria via intra- and intercellular pathways is crucial. Intracellular quality control consists of biogenesis, fusion and fission, and degradation of mitochondria in the cell, whereas intercellular quality control involves tunneling nanotubes and extracellular vesicles. In this review, we outline the current knowledge on the intra- and intercellular quality control mechanisms of mitochondria. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Positive Control for Detection of Functional CD4 T Cells in PBMC: The CPI Pool
Cells 2017, 6(4), 47; doi:10.3390/cells6040047 -
Abstract
Testing of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) for immune monitoring purposes requires verification of their functionality. This is of particular concern when the PBMC have been shipped or stored for prolonged periods of time. While the CEF (Cytomegalo-, Epstein-Barr and Flu-virus) peptide pool
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Testing of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) for immune monitoring purposes requires verification of their functionality. This is of particular concern when the PBMC have been shipped or stored for prolonged periods of time. While the CEF (Cytomegalo-, Epstein-Barr and Flu-virus) peptide pool has become the gold standard for testing CD8 cell functionality, a positive control for CD4 cells is so far lacking. The latter ideally consists of proteins so as to control for the functionality of the antigen processing and presentation compartments, as well. Aiming to generate a positive control for CD4 cells, we first selected 12 protein antigens from infectious/environmental organisms that are ubiquitous: Varicella, Influenza, Parainfluenza, Mumps, Cytomegalovirus, Streptococcus, Mycoplasma, Lactobacillus, Neisseria, Candida, Rubella, and Measles. Of these antigens, three were found to elicited interferon (IFN)-γ-producing CD4 cells in the majority of human test subjects: inactivated cytomegalo-, parainfluenza-, and influenza virions (CPI). While individually none of these three antigens triggered a recall response in all donors, the pool of the three (the ‘CPI pool’), did. One hundred percent of 245 human donors tested were found to be CPI positive, including Caucasians, Asians, and African-Americans. Therefore, the CPI pool appears to be suitable to serve as universal positive control for verifying the functionality of CD4 and of antigen presenting cells. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Differential Location and Distribution of Hepatic Immune Cells
Cells 2017, 6(4), 48; doi:10.3390/cells6040048 -
Abstract
The liver is one of the main organs in the body, performing several metabolic and immunological functions that are indispensable to the organism. The liver is strategically positioned in the abdominal cavity between the intestine and the systemic circulation. Due to its location,
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The liver is one of the main organs in the body, performing several metabolic and immunological functions that are indispensable to the organism. The liver is strategically positioned in the abdominal cavity between the intestine and the systemic circulation. Due to its location, the liver is continually exposed to nutritional insults, microbiota products from the intestinal tract, and to toxic substances. Hepatocytes are the major functional constituents of the hepatic lobes, and perform most of the liver’s secretory and synthesizing functions, although another important cell population sustains the vitality of the organ: the hepatic immune cells. Liver immune cells play a fundamental role in host immune responses and exquisite mechanisms are necessary to govern the density and the location of the different hepatic leukocytes. Here we discuss the location of these pivotal cells within the different liver compartments, and how their frequency and tissular location can dictate the fate of liver immune responses. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Venture from the Interior—Herpesvirus pUL31 Escorts Capsids from Nucleoplasmic Replication Compartments to Sites of Primary Envelopment at the Inner Nuclear Membrane
Cells 2017, 6(4), 46; doi:10.3390/cells6040046 -
Abstract
Herpesviral capsid assembly is initiated in the nucleoplasm of the infected cell. Size constraints require that newly formed viral nucleocapsids leave the nucleus by an evolutionarily conserved vescular transport mechanism called nuclear egress. Mature capsids released from the nucleoplasm are engaged in a
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Herpesviral capsid assembly is initiated in the nucleoplasm of the infected cell. Size constraints require that newly formed viral nucleocapsids leave the nucleus by an evolutionarily conserved vescular transport mechanism called nuclear egress. Mature capsids released from the nucleoplasm are engaged in a membrane-mediated budding process, composed of primary envelopment at the inner nuclear membrane and de-envelopment at the outer nuclear membrane. Once in the cytoplasm, the capsids receive their secondary envelope for maturation into infectious virions. Two viral proteins conserved throughout the herpesvirus family, the integral membrane protein pUL34 and the phosphoprotein pUL31, form the nuclear egress complex required for capsid transport from the infected nucleus to the cytoplasm. Formation of the nuclear egress complex results in budding of membrane vesicles revealing its function as minimal virus-encoded membrane budding and scission machinery. The recent structural analysis unraveled details of the heterodimeric nuclear egress complex and the hexagonal coat it forms at the inside of budding vesicles to drive primary envelopment. With this review, I would like to present the capsid-escort-model where pUL31 associates with capsids in nucleoplasmic replication compartments for escort to sites of primary envelopment thereby coupling capsid maturation and nuclear egress. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
The Role of Hypoxia in Glioblastoma Invasion
Cells 2017, 6(4), 45; doi:10.3390/cells6040045 -
Abstract
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), a grade IV astrocytoma, is the most common and deadly type of primary malignant brain tumor, with a patient’s median survival rate ranging from 15 to 17 months. The current treatment for GBM involves tumor resection surgery based on MRI
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Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), a grade IV astrocytoma, is the most common and deadly type of primary malignant brain tumor, with a patient’s median survival rate ranging from 15 to 17 months. The current treatment for GBM involves tumor resection surgery based on MRI image analysis, followed by radiotherapy and treatment with temozolomide. However, the gradual development of tumor resistance to temozolomide is frequent in GBM patients leading to subsequent tumor regrowth/relapse. For this reason, the development of more effective therapeutic approaches for GBM is of critical importance. Low tumor oxygenation, also known as hypoxia, constitutes a major concern for GBM patients, since it promotes cancer cell spreading (invasion) into the healthy brain tissue in order to evade this adverse microenvironment. Tumor invasion not only constitutes a major obstacle to surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, but it is also the main cause of death in GBM patients. Understanding how hypoxia triggers the GBM cells to become invasive is paramount to developing novel and more effective therapies against this devastating disease. In this review, we will present a comprehensive examination of the available literature focused on investigating how GBM hypoxia triggers an invasive cancer cell phenotype and the role of these invasive proteins in GBM progression. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Entamoeba histolytica under Oxidative Stress: What Countermeasure Mechanisms Are in Place?
Cells 2017, 6(4), 44; doi:10.3390/cells6040044 -
Abstract
Entamoeba histolytica is the causative agent of human amoebiasis; it affects 50 million people worldwide and causes approximately 100,000 deaths per year. Entamoeba histolytica is an anaerobic parasite that is primarily found in the colon; however, for unknown reasons, it can become invasive,
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Entamoeba histolytica is the causative agent of human amoebiasis; it affects 50 million people worldwide and causes approximately 100,000 deaths per year. Entamoeba histolytica is an anaerobic parasite that is primarily found in the colon; however, for unknown reasons, it can become invasive, breaching the gut barrier and migrating toward the liver causing amoebic liver abscesses. During the invasive process, it must maintain intracellular hypoxia within the oxygenated human tissues and cellular homeostasis during the host immune defense attack when it is confronted with nitric oxide and reactive oxygen species. But how? This review will address the described and potential mechanisms available to counter the oxidative stress generated during invasion and the possible role that E. histolytica’s continuous endoplasmic reticulum (Eh-ER) plays during these events. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Danger: High Voltage—The Role of Voltage-Gated Calcium Channels in Central Nervous System Pathology
Cells 2017, 6(4), 43; doi:10.3390/cells6040043 -
Abstract
Voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) are widely distributed within the central nervous system (CNS) and presumed to play an important role in the pathophysiology of a broad spectrum of CNS disorders including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease as well as multiple sclerosis. Several calcium channel
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Voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) are widely distributed within the central nervous system (CNS) and presumed to play an important role in the pathophysiology of a broad spectrum of CNS disorders including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease as well as multiple sclerosis. Several calcium channel blockers have been in clinical practice for many years so that their toxicity and side effects are well studied. However, these drugs are primarily used for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases and most if not all effects on brain functions are secondary to peripheral effects on blood pressure and circulation. While the use of calcium channel antagonists for the treatment of CNS diseases therefore still heavily depends on the development of novel strategies to specifically target different channels and channel subunits, this review is meant to provide an impulse to further emphasize the importance of future research towards this goal. Full article
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