ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.1630.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: chromatin compaction; chromomycin A3, aniline; diff-quik; DNA fragmentation; SCSA
Online: 25 September 2023 (07:06:55 CEST)
Sperm DNA integrity and chromatin status serve as pivotal indicators of sperm quality, given their in-tricate link to sperm function, embryo development, and overall fertility. Defects in chromatin com-paction, which are often associated with compromised protamine content, can lead to damaged DNA strands. In this study, chromatin status and possible correlation with DNA damage was assessed in males of three mouse species: Mus musculus, M. spretus and M. spicilegus. We employed various staining methods, including aniline blue, methylene blue (Diff-Quik), toluidine blue and chromomy-cin A3, to assess chromatin compaction in cauda epididymal sperm. Samples were also analyzed by the sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA) to estimate DNA fragmentation (%tDFI, %HDS). Analyses were carried out on freshly collected sperm and cells incubated for 3 h in a Hepes-buffered modified Tyrode's medium simulating conditions of the female reproductive tract. Notably, the analysis of chromatin status yielded minimal abnormal values across all three species, employing diverse meth-odologies. SCSA analyses revealed distinct variations in %tDFI between species. Following sperm incubation, the percentages of sperm stained with methylene blue exhibited differences among the species and were significantly correlated to the DNA fragmentation index. HDS demonstrated correla-tions with the percentages of sperm stained by aniline blue, methylene blue and chromomycin A3. Overall, chromatin compaction was high across all species, with limited differences among them. The relationship between chromatin status and DNA integrity appeared to be related to levels of sperm competition among species.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.1118.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition; heat shock transcription factor 1; HSF1 inhibitor; human mammary epithelial cells
Online: 18 September 2023 (08:51:33 CEST)
HSF1 is a well-known Heat Shock Protein expression regulator in response to stress. It also regulates processes important for growth, development, or tumorigenesis. Here, we studied the HSF1 influence on the phenotype of non-tumorigenic human mammary epithelial (MCF10A and MCF12A) and several triple-negative breast cancer cell lines. MCF10A and MCF12A differ by HSF1 levels, morphology, growth in the matrigel, expression of epithelial (CDH1) and mesenchymal (VIM) markers (MCF10A are epithelial cells, MCF12A resemble mesenchymal cells). HSF1 down-regulation led to reduced proliferation rate and spheroid formation in matrigel by MCF10A cells, while it did not affect the MCF12A proliferation but led to CDH1 up-regulation and the formation of better-organized spheroids. HSF1 overexpression in MCF10A resulted in reduced CDH1 and increased VIM expression, and the acquisition of elongated fibroblast-like morphology. The above results suggest that elevated levels of HSF1 may direct mammary epithelial cells toward a mesenchymal phenotype while lowering HSF1 could reverse the mesenchymal phenotype to an epithelial one. Therefore, HSF1 may be involved in the remodeling of mammary gland architecture over the female lifetime. Moreover, HSF1 levels positively correlated with the invasive phenotype of triple-negative breast cancer cells, and their growth was inhibited by the HSF1 inhibitor, DTHIB.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.1072.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: sympoiesis; Gaia; thermodynamics; metabolism; ethics
Online: 18 September 2023 (05:45:03 CEST)
A view of life, based on sympoiesis, metabolism, and the second law of thermodynamics is proposed. Sympoiesis is the notion that organisms develop as teams, and that symbionts play roles in forming their partners. Metabolism is seen to occur not only within these developmental symbionts, but between them, as well. This occurs through thermodynamic principles of finding the lowest free energy states. Once one accepts the thermodynamics of metabolism and that holobionts emerge through sympoiesis, Gaia becomes readily understood. New ethical principles flow from these considerations.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0984.v2
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Anoikis; Adult stem cells; Somatic cells; Reprograming; suspension-induced stem cell transition; single cell RNA sequence
Online: 18 September 2023 (03:58:54 CEST)
Adult stem cells (ASCs) can be cultured with difficulty from most tissues, often requiring chemical or transgenic modification to achieve adequate quantities. We show here that mouse primary fibroblasts grown in suspension change from the elongated and flattened morphology observed under standard adherent culture conditions generating rounded cells with large nuclei and scant cytoplasm expressing the mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) marker (Sca1; Ly6A) within 24hrs. Based on this initial observation, we describe here a suspension culture method that, irrespective of the lineage used, mouse fibroblast, primary human somatic cells (fibroblasts, hepatocytes and keratinocytes), is capable of generating a high yield of cells in spheroid form which display expression of ASCs surface markers, circumventing the anoikis which often occurs at this stage. Moreover, mouse fibroblasts-derived spheroids can be differentiated into adipogenic and osteogenic lineages. Analysis of single cell RNA sequence data identified 8 distinct cell clusters with one in particular comprising approximately 10% of the cells showing high levels of proliferative capacity expressing high levels of genes related to MSCs and self-renewal as well as extracellular matrix (ECM). We believe the rapid, high-yield generation of proliferative, multi-potent ASC-like cells by the process we term suspension-induced stem cell transition (SIST) could have significant implications for regenerative medicine.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0802.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: endothelial cells; cell membrane repair; dysferlin; annexins; cardiovascular diseases
Online: 13 September 2023 (05:43:59 CEST)
Endothelial cells are the crucial inner lining of blood vessels, pivotal in vascular homeostasis and integrity. However, these cells are perpetually subjected to a myriad of mechanical, chemical, and biological stresses that can compromise their plasma membranes. A sophisticated repair system involving key molecules, such as calcium, annexins, dysferlin, and MG53, is essential for maintaining endothelial viability. These components orchestrate complex mechanisms, including exocytosis and endocytosis, to repair membrane disruptions. Dysfunctions in this repair machinery, often exacerbated by aging, are linked to endothelial cell death, subsequently contributing to the onset of atherosclerosis and the progression of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and stroke, major causes of mortality in the United States. Thus, identifying the core machinery for endothelial cell membrane repair is critically important for understanding the pathogenesis of CVD and stroke and developing novel therapeutic strategies for combating CVD and stroke. This review summarizes the recent advances in understanding the mechanisms of endothelial cell membrane repair. The future directions of this research area are also highlighted.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0765.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: ferroptosis; regulation; lung adenocarcinoma; therapy
Online: 12 September 2023 (10:36:16 CEST)
Lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) is the most common lung cancers, which accounts for about 35%-40% of all lung cancer patients. Despite therapeutic advancements in recent years, the overall survival time of the LUAD patients still remain poor, especially KRAS mutant LUAD. Therefore, it is necessary to further explore novel targets and drugs to improve the prognosis of LUAD. Ferroptosis, an iron-dependent regulated cell death (RCD）caused by lipid peroxidation, has attracted much attention recently as an alternative target for apoptosis in LUAD therapy. Ferroptosis has been found closely related with LUAD, at its every stage, including initiation, proliferation and progression. In this review, we will provide a comprehensive overview on ferroptosis mechanisms, it’s regulation in LUAD, and application of targeting ferroptosis for LUAD therapy.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0682.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Akt; cancer; metastasis; HNSCC; EMT; cytoskeletal remodelling
Online: 12 September 2023 (08:33:01 CEST)
Metastasis is a critical step in the process of carcinogenesis and a vast majority of cancer related mortalities result from metastat-ic disease that is resistant to current therapies. Cell migration and invasion are the first steps of the metastasis process, which mainly occurs by two important biological mechanisms i.e., cytoskeletal remodelling and Epithelial to Mesenchymal Transition (EMT). Akt (also known as Protein Kinase B) is a central signalling molecule of the PI3K-Akt signalling pathway. Aberrant acti-vation of this pathway has been identified in a wide range of cancers. Several studies have revealed that Akt actively engages with the migratory process in motile cells, including metastatic cancer cells. The downstream signalling mechanism of Akt in cell migration depends upon the tumour type, sites, and intracellular localisation of activated Akt. In this review, we focus on the role of Akt in the regulation of two events that control cell migration and invasion in various cancers including head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) and the status of PI3K-Akt pathway inhibitors in clinical trials in HNSCC.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0478.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Na+/H+ exchangers (NHEs); SLC9; sperm; pH regulation; male fertility; motility; capacitation; acrosome reaction; fertilization
Online: 7 September 2023 (10:44:32 CEST)
Na+/H+ exchangers (NHEs) are known to be important regulators of pH in multiple intracellular compartments of eukaryotic cells. Sperm function is especially dependent on changes in pH and thus it has been postulated that NHEs play important roles in regulating the intracellular pH of these cells. For example, in order to achieve fertilization, mature sperm must maintain a basal pH in the male reproductive tract and then alkalize in response to specific signals in the female reproductive tract during the capacitation process. Eight NHE isoforms are expressed in mammalian testis/sperm: NHE1, NHE3, NHE5, NHE8, NHA1, NHA2, NHE10, and NHE11. These NHE isoforms are expressed at varying times during spermatogenesis and localize to different subcellular structures in developing and mature sperm where they contribute to multiple aspects of sperm physiology and male fertility including proper sperm development/morphogenesis, motility, capacitation, and the acrosome reaction. Previous work has provided evidence for NHE3, NHE8, NHA1, NHA2, and NHE10 being critical for male fertility in mice and NHE10 has recently been shown to be essential for male fertility in humans. In this article we review what is known about each NHE isoform expressed in mammalian sperm and discuss the physiological significance of each NHE isoform with respect to male fertility.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0242.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: antioxidant capacity; glutathione; hydrogen peroxide; nitric oxide synthase; oxidative stress; su-peroxide ion; sperm physiology; reactive oxygen species
Online: 6 September 2023 (14:32:15 CEST)
Cryopreserved semen is widely used in Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) enabling the conservation and broad use of genetically superior semen. The quality of semen post-thawing determines the success of ART and despite the great advances in cryopreservation methods, the quality of frozen/thawed semen is still sub-optimal. Post-thawing spermatozoa endure oxidative stress (OS) due to the high levels of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species, which are produced during the freezing/thawing process, and the depletion of antioxidants. To counteract this depletion, supplementation of sperm preparation medium with antioxidants has been widely applied. Melatonin is a hormone with diverse biological roles and a potent antioxidant, with an ameliorative effect on spermatozoa. In the present study, the effect of melatonin on bovine spermatozoa was evaluated during in vitro sperm handling and under oxidative conditions in terms of sperm quality parameters and antioxidant capacity. Melatonin (100 μΜ) improved the kinematic parameters of spermatozoa, enhanced viability and reinforced the antioxidant status of spermatozoa by increasing cellular GSH levels and inhibiting iNOS protein expression.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0295.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: children; systemic inflammatory response; cardiac surgery; neurovascular unit; critical care medicine
Online: 5 September 2023 (09:39:44 CEST)
Purpose of the study: to reveal how the transfusion and the refraining from it affects the neuro-vascular unit in the congenital heart defects correction with cardiopulmonary bypass. Materials and methods: in vitro research, we formed a model of a neurovascular unit, which contains neu-rons, astrocytes and endothelial cells. This cellular model was cultivated in hypoxia conditions with the oxygen saturation levels of 1, 2, 3, 4%. In addition, this unit was cultivated with the pa-tient's serum adding in two different groups - with minimal and maximal levels of system in-flammatory response that we estimated by IL-6 level. Results: We found that during incubation in hypoxic conditions, the level of transendothelial resistance changed in groups with oxygen levels of 1% and 2% only after 4 hours. When we cultivated neurovascular unit cells with patients' sera, we found a minimal level of transendothelial resistance at 4 hours that increased after 24 hours. Permeability analysis showed that its level significantly decreased in the 1% and 2% oxygen group at 60- and 90-minutes relative to the control group. Conclusion: the system inflammatory response has more expressed but less long effect on the neurovascular unit model than hypoxia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0215.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Homocysteine; endothelial cell; angiogenesis; zebrafish; ER stress; actin cytoskeleton; mitochondria; glycolysis; TCA cycle
Online: 5 September 2023 (05:24:08 CEST)
Elevation of the intermediate amino acid metabolite Homocysteine (Hcy) causes Hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy), a metabolic disorder frequently associated with mutations in the methionine-cysteine metabolic cycle as well as with nutritional deficiency and aging. Previous literature suggest that HHcy is a strong risk factor for cardiovascular diseases. Severe HHcy is well established to correlate with vascular pathologies primarily via endothelial cell death. Though moderate HHcy is more prevalent and associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular abnormalities in later part of life, its precise role in endothelial physiology is largely unknown. In this study, we report that moderate elevation of Hcy causes endothelial dysfunction through impairment of their migration and proliferation. We established that unlike severe elevation of Hcy, moderate HHcy is not associated with suppressed endothelial VEGF/VEGFR signaling and oxidative stress induction. We further showed that moderate HHcy induces a sub-lethal ER stress that causes defective endothelial migration through abnormal actin cytoskeletal remodeling. We also found that sub-lethal increase of Hcy causes endothelial proliferation defect by suppressing mitochondrial respiration and concomitantly increases glycolysis to compensate the consequential ATP loss and maintain overall energy homeostasis. Finally, analyzing an available microarray dataset, we confirmed that these hallmarks of moderate HHcy are conserved in adult endothelial cells as well. Thus, we identified adaptive UPR and metabolic rewiring as two key mechanistic signatures in moderate HHcy-associated endothelial dysfunction. As HHcy is clinically associated with enhanced vascular inflammation and hypercoagulability, identifying these mechanistic pathways may serve as future targets to regulate endothelial function and health.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0180.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: enteric nervous system; neural crest; ceca; hindgut; Hirschsprung disease; BMP4; Noggin; GDNF
Online: 5 September 2023 (02:47:26 CEST)
The enteric nervous system (ENS) is principally derived from vagal neural crest cells that migrate caudally along the entire length of the gastrointestinal tract, giving rise to neurons and glial cells in two ganglionated plexuses. Incomplete migration of enteric neural crest-derived cells (ENCDC) leads to Hirschsprung disease, a congenital disorder characterized by the absence of enteric ganglia along variable lengths of the colorectum. Our recent data  support an essential role for the avian ceca, present at the junction of midgut and hindgut, in hindgut ENS development, since ablation of the cecal buds leads to incomplete ENCDC colonization of the hindgut. In situ hybridization shows bone morphogenetic protein-4 (BMP4) highly expressed in the cecal mesenchyme, leading us to hypothesize that cecal BMP4 is required for hindgut ENS development. To test this, we modulated BMP4 activity using embryonic intestinal organ culture techniques and retroviral infection in ovo. We show that overexpression or inhibition of BMP4 in the ceca disrupts hindgut ENS development, with GDNF playing an important regulatory role. Our results suggest that these two important signaling pathways are required for normal ENCDC migration and enteric ganglion formation in the developing hindgut ENS.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0120.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Melanoma; BRAF mutations; BRAF inhibitors; MEK inhibitors; Immunotherapy
Online: 4 September 2023 (15:46:20 CEST)
Skin cancer is a prevalent and heterogenous disease with several subtypes, such as melanoma, basal cell carcinoma, and squamous cell carcinoma. Among them, melanoma is the most aggressive subtype, with a higher propensity to spread compared to most solid tumors. The application of OMICS approaches has revolutionized the field of melanoma research by providing comprehensive insights into the molecular alterations and biological processes underlying melanoma development and progression. This review aims to offer an overview of melanoma biology, covering its transition from primary to malignant melanoma, as well as the key genes and pathways involved in the initiation and progression of this disease. Utilizing online databases, we extensively explored the general expression profile of genes, identified the most frequently altered genes, and gene mutations, and examined genetic alterations responsible for drug resistance. Additionally, we studied the mechanisms responsible for immune checkpoint inhibitors resistance in melanoma.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0070.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: iPSCs; Arbas cashmere goats; RNA-sequencing
Online: 4 September 2023 (03:55:07 CEST)
The Arbas cashmere goat is a unique biological resource that plays a vital role in livestock husbandry in China. LCDM is a medium with special small molecules (consisting of human LIF, CHIR99021, (S)-(+)-dimethindene maleate, and minocycline hydrochloride) for generation pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) with bidirectional developmental potential in mice, humans, pigs, and bovines. However, there is no report on whether LCDM can support for generation of PSCs with the same ability in Arbas cashmere goats. In this study, we applied LCDM to generation goat induced PSCs (giPSCs) from goat fetal fibroblasts (GFFs) by reprogramming. The derived giPSCs exhibited stem cell morphology, expressing pluripotent markers, and could differentiate into three germ layers. Moreover, the giPSCs differentiated into the trophectoderm lineage by spontaneous and directed differentiation in vitro. The giPSCs contributed to embryonic and extraembryonic tissue in preimplantation blastocysts and postimplantation chimeric embryos. RNA-sequencing analysis showed that the giPSCs were very close to goat embryos at the blastocyst stage and giPSCs have similar properties to typical extended PSCs (EPSCs). The establishment of giPSCs with LCDM provides a new way to generate high quality of PSCs from domestic animals and lays the foundation for basic and applied research in biology and agriculture.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.2205.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: sperm selection; oxygen consumption; Cumulus cells; Capacitation; Tyrosine phosphorylation
Online: 1 September 2023 (13:43:58 CEST)
In the literature, it is well known the correlation between poor semen quality and DNA sperm integrity, which can turn into negative outcomes in terms of embryo development and clinical pregnancy. Sperm selection plays a pivotal role in clinical practice and the most widely used methods are mainly based on sperm motility and morphology. The cumulus oophorus complex (COC) during natural fertilization represents a barrier that spermatozoa must overcome to reach the zona pellucida and fertilize the oocyte. Spermatozoa that can pass through the COC have better structural and metabolic characteristics as well as enhanced acrosome reaction (AR). The present study aimed to evaluate the exposure of sperm to cumulus cell secretome during swim-up treatment (SUC), compared to the routinely used swim-up method (SU). To determine the effectiveness of this method biological factors critical for the ability of sperm to fertilize an oocyte, including capacitation, AR, tyrosine phosphorylation signature, DNA integrity, and mitochondrial functionality were assessed. The SUC selection assures recovery of high-quality spermatozoa, with enhanced mitochondrial functionality and motility compared to both SU-selected or unselected (U) sperm. Furthermore, by this modified swim-up procedure significantly reduced sperm DNA damage (p<0.05) was detected. In conclusion, the SUC approach is a more physiological and integrated method for sperm selection that deserves further investigation for its translation into clinical practice.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.2080.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Intussusceptive angiogenesis; caudal vein plexus; transluminal pillar; vessel remodelling
Online: 31 August 2023 (03:56:49 CEST)
Intussusceptive pillars, regarded as a hallmark of intussusceptive angiogenesis, have been described in developing vasculature of many organs and organisms. The aim of this study was to resolve the question about pillar formation and their further maturation employing zebrafish caudal vein plexus (CVP). The CVP development was monitored by in vivo confocal microscopy in high spatio-temporal resolution using the transgenic zebrafish model Fli1a:eGPF//Gata1:dsRed. We tracked back the formation of pillars (diameter ≤4µm) and intercapillary meshes (diameter >4µm) and analysed their morphology and behaviour. Transluminal pillars in the CVP arose by a combination of sprouting, lumen expansion, and/or by creation of intraluminal folds, and those mechanisms were not associated directly with blood flow. The follow-up of pillars indicated that one third of them disappeared between 28-48 hours post fertilisation (hpf) and of the remaining ones only 1/17 changed their cross-section area by >50%. The majority of the bigger meshes (39/62) increased their cross-section area by >50%. Plexus simplification and establishment of hierarchy was dominated by the dynamics of intercapillary meshes, which formed mainly by sprouting angiogenesis. These meshes were observed to grow, reshape, and merge with each other. Our observations suggested an alternative view on intussusceptive angiogenesis in the CVP.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1993.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: tissue nonspecific alkaline phosphatase; hypophosphatasia; cranial neural crest; cranial base; synchondrosis; chondrocyte, phosphate, pyrophosphate
Online: 30 August 2023 (02:34:37 CEST)
Bone growth plate abnormalities and skull shape defects are seen in hypophosphatasia, a heritable disorder in humans that occurs due to deficiency of Tissue Nonspecific Alkaline Phosphatase (TNAP, Alpl) enzyme activity. Abnormal development of the cranial base growth plates (synchondroses) and abnormal skull shapes have also been demonstrated in global TNAP-/- mice. To distinguish local vs. systemic effects of TNAP on skull development, we utilized P0-Cre to knockout TNAP only in cranial neural crest derived tissues using TNAP flox mice. Here we show that TNAP deficiency in cranial neural crest leads to leads to skull shape defects and deficient growth of the intersphenoid synchondrosis (ISS). ISS chondrocyte abnormalities included increased proliferation in resting and proliferative zones with decreased apoptosis in hypertrophic zones. ColX expression is increased, indicative of premature differentiation in the absence of TNAP. Sox9 expression is increased in both resting and prehypertrophic zones of mutant mice. Expression of PTHrP and IHH were also increased. Finally, cranial base organ culture revealed that inorganic phosphate (Pi) and pyrophosphate (PPi) have specific effects on cell signaling and phenotype changes in the ISS. Together, these results demonstrate that TNAP expression in growth plate chondrocytes is essential for normal development, and that the mechanism likely involves Sox9, PTHrP, IHH and PPi.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1962.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: piezo1 channel; melanoma; Yoda1; 3D spheroids
Online: 29 August 2023 (09:54:40 CEST)
Melanoma is a highly aggressive type of skin cancer produced by malignant transformation of melanocytes and it is usually associated with a poor prognosis. Clinically, melanoma has several stages associated with migration and invasion of the cells through the skin layers, rapid cell spreading and formation of tumors in multiple organs. The main problem is the emergence of resistance of melanoma to the applied methods of treatment, thus it is of primary importance to find more crucial signaling pathways that control the progression of this type of cancer and could be targeted to prevent melanoma spreading. The main life-threatening stage of melanoma is metastasis formation, and 3D cell spheroids are better suited for the study of this process. Using a combinative approach (RT-PCR, immunofluorescence, patch-clamp and calcium imaging) we showed the functional expression of mechanosensitive Piezo1 channels in SK-MEL-2 aggressive melanoma cell line. We found that chemical activation of Piezo1 by its selective agonist Yoda1 completely prevents melanoma spheroid formation, and could be considered as a novel approach for the prevention of melanoma development.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1688.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: cancer; asymmetric and symmetric cell cycling (ACD, SCD); loss of function; DNA-damaged cells; genomic repair; reprogramming; oncogenesis
Online: 24 August 2023 (09:43:20 CEST)
The life cycle of cancer follows the life cycle of the common ancestor of amoebozoans, metazoans, and fungi (AMF) and its systemic germline, which serves as a blueprint for all germlines capable of asymmetric cell division (ACD) and stem cell differentiation. Consequently, the oxygen sensitivity of the ancient non-gametogenic germline (Urgermline) was inherited by all germ and stem cell lines including the cancer germline. They all respond to Ugermline’s hyperoxia with loss of stemness and ACD ability and a dysregulated phenotype with irreparable DNA defects and defective symmetric cell divisions (DSCD). In protists, defective DSCD cells undergo an ancient MGRS repair program involving cell and nuclear fusion and hyperploid giant nuclei that restores the damaged genome to its former pre-DSCD state, with ACD potential and stemness. Human and metazoan DSCD use the same MGRS repair program inherited from the AMF ancestor. Ectopic DSCDs and DSCD-like phenotypes can survive in humans for many years in suitable niches. Under favorable environmental conditions, they also have access to the ancient MGRS repair mechanism including the ancient gene regulatory network (aGRN) and all other AMF genes. The aGRN takes control of cancer’s hybrid genome and represses human genes. It installs a G+S cancer life cycle of AMF imprinting that shapes the differentiation of naïve cancer stem cells (CSCs). CSCs are deeply homologous to the aGSCs of the AMF ancestor. Reprogramming of the DSCD genome by MGRS paves the way for oncogenesis. In this light, cancer is not a mutational or genetic disease, but a non-mutational genome-altering disease.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1704.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: pediatric; infertility; andrology; preservation; surgery; innovation
Online: 24 August 2023 (05:22:52 CEST)
Male infertility is a condition that has always been less studied and known than female infertility. Male infertility is increasingly present and increasingly dignosticated. Although several causes are known, to date about 40% of the causes are considered idiopathic. The worldwide denatality, can only be slowed if awareness campaigns are implemented on all the diseases that can alter fertile potential, especially in young adolescents. Male infertility is, in addition, associated with several medical conditions, in particular the association between infertility and testicular cancer, cardiovascular disease, autoimmune diseases and genetic diseases is well known. For this reason, fertility preservation should not be proposed or be only oncological in nature, but there are several diagnosable pediatric pathologies associated with altered fertile potential to whose patients we could offer a gamete preservation pathway. In this paper we propose our experience on fertility preservation in pediatric andrological diseases.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1637.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Hydrogel; Extracellular matrix; Stiffness; Cell; Cancer; Internal stresses; Bound water
Online: 23 August 2023 (07:17:32 CEST)
Hydrogels can be considered as mimics of extracellular matrix (ECM).Cytoskeleton through integrins is connected with ECM and cytoskeleton tension depends on ECM stiffness.A number of age-related diseases depend on cellular processes related with cytoskeleton function.Some examples of cancer initiation and progression and heart disease in relationship with ECM stiffness has been analysed.Incorporation of rigid particles in ECM can increase ECM stifness and to promote formation of internal residual stresses. Water migration, changes of water binding energy to biomactomolecules, changes of the state of water from tightly bound water to free and loosely bound water changes stiffness of ECM. Risks related with rigid particles incorporation into ECM have been also iscussed.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1554.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: NRF2; ferroptosis; antioxidant; metabolism
Online: 23 August 2023 (03:28:45 CEST)
Ferroptosis is an iron-dependent and lipid peroxidation-driven cell death cascade, occurring when there is an imbalance of redox homeostasis in the cell. Nuclear factor E2 related factor 2 (NFE2L2, also known as NRF2) is key for cellular antioxidant responses, which promotes downstream gene transcription by binding to their antioxidant response elements (AREs). Numerous studies suggest that NRF2 assumes an extremely important role in the regulation of ferroptosis, for its various functions on iron, lipid and amino acid metabolism and so on. Many pathological states are relevant to ferroptosis. In cancer cells, ferroptosis is frequently found abnormal suppression. While during tissue damages, ferroptosis is recurrently promoted, resulting in a large number of cell deaths and ultimately loss of the functions of the corresponding organs. Therefore, targeting NRF2-related signaling pathways, to induce or inhibit ferroptosis, has become a great potential therapy for combating cancers, as well as preventing neurodegenerative and ischemic diseases. In this review, a brief overview of the research process of ferroptosis over the past decade will be presented. In particular, the mechanisms of ferroptosis and a focus on the regulation of ferroptosis by NRF2 will be discussed. Finally, the review will briefly list some clinical applications of targeting the NRF2 signaling pathway in the treatment of diseases.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1473.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Mob4,; Cell proliferation, neurogenesis, spermatogenesis, Hippo pathway, STRIPAK, MOB-like protein
Online: 21 August 2023 (12:12:00 CEST)
Signaling modules that integrate the diverse extra- and intracellular inputs to control cell proliferation are essential during both development and adult stages to guarantee organism homeostasis. Mobs are small adaptor proteins that participate in several of these signalling pathways. Here we review recent advances unraveling Mob4 cellular functions, a highly conserved non-catalytic protein, that plays a diversity of roles in cell proliferation, sperm cell differentiation and simultaneously is involved in synapse formation and neural development. In addition, the gene is often overexpressed in a wide range of tumors and is linked to poor clinical outcomes. Nevertheless, Mob4 molecular functions remain poorly defined, although it integrates the core structure of STRIPAK, a kinase/phosphatase protein complex, that can act upstream of the Hippo pathway. In this review we focus on the recent findings of Mob4 functions, that have begun to clarify its critical role on cell proliferation and development of tissues and individuals.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.0895.v1
Online: 11 August 2023 (08:07:50 CEST)
This study investigated modifications in the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) in a mouse model of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and their relationship to heart complications. db/db mice heart tissues were compared with WT mice tissues using RNA sequencing, qRT-PCR, and protein analysis to identify cardiac UPS modifications associated with diabetes. The findings unveiled a distinctive gene profile in the hearts of db/db mice with decreased levels of nppb mRNA and increased levels of Myh7, indicating potential cardiac dysfunction. mRNA levels of USP18 (deubiquitinating enzyme), psmb8, and psmb9 (proteasome β-subunits) were downregulated in db/db mice while mRNA levels of RNF167 (E3 ligase) were increased. Corresponding LMP2 and LMP7 proteins were downregulated in db/db mice, and RNF167 was elevated in Adult diabetic mice. Reduced expression of LMP2 and LMP7, along with increased RNF167 expression, may contribute to future cardiac deterioration commonly observed in diabetes. This study enhances our understanding of UPS imbalances in the hearts of diabetic mice and raises questions about the interplay between the UPS and other cellular processes, such as autophagy. Further exploration in this area could provide valuable insights into the mechanisms underlying diabetic heart complications and potential therapeutic targets.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.0719.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: IGF-I; knockout; bone; chondrocyte; osteoblast; endochondral ossification; epiphysis; sec-ondary spongiosa; bone mass
Online: 9 August 2023 (10:52:29 CEST)
To evaluate the relative importance of IGF-I expression in various cell types for endochon-dral ossification, we quantified the trabecular bone at the secondary spongiosa and epiphysis of the distal femur in 8-12-week-old male mice with a global knockout of the Igf-I gene as well as conditional deletion of the Igf-I gene in osteoblasts, chondrocytes, osteo-blasts/chondrocytes, and their corresponding control wild type littermates. The osteoblast-, chondrocyte- and osteoblast/chondrocyte-specific Igf-I conditional knockout mice were generated by crossing Igf-I floxed mice with Cre transgenic mice in which Cre expression is under the control of Col1α2 or Col2α1 promoter. We found that global disruption of Igf-I resulted in 80% and 70% reduction in bone size, which is defined as total volume, at the secondary spongiosa and epiphysis of the distal femur, respectively. Abrogation of Igf-I in Col1α2-producing osteoblasts, but not Col2α1-producing chondrocytes, decreased bone size by 25% at both the secondary spongiosa and epiphysis while deletion of the Igf-I globally or specifically in osteoblasts or chondrocytes reduced trabecular bone mass by 25%. By contrast, global Igf-I knockout but not conditional knockout of Igf-I in osteoblasts and/or chondrocytes reduced trabecular bone mass in the epiphysis. The reduced trabecu-lar bone mass at the secondary spongiosa in osteoblast- and/or chondrocyte-specific Igf-I conditional knockout mice is caused by reduced trabecular number and increased trabec-ular separation. Immunohistochemistry studies revealed that expression levels of chon-drocyte (COL10, MMP13) and osteoblast (BSP) markers were reduced in the secondary spongiosa and the epiphyses in the global Igf-I knockout mice. Our data indicate that local and endocrine IGF-I actions in bone are pleiotropic and dependent on cell type as well as the bone compartment where IGF-I acts.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.0376.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Opsin; Photoreceptors; Evolution; Sea Urchin
Online: 4 August 2023 (14:34:41 CEST)
The ability to perceive and respond to light stimuli is fundamental not only for spatial vision, but also to many other light mediated interactions with the environment. In animals, light perception is performed by specific cells known as photoreceptors and, at molecular level, by a group of GPCRs known as Opsins. Sea urchin larvae possess a group of photoreceptor cells (PRCs), deploying a Go-Opsin (Opsin3.2), which have been shown to share transcription factors and morphology with PRCs of the ciliary type, contributing to raising new questions on how this sea urchin larva PRC is specified and whether it shares a common ancestor with ciliary PRCs or it evolved independently through convergent evolution. To answer these questions, we combined immunohistochemistry and fluorescent in situ hybridization to investigate how the Opsin3.2 PRCs develop in the sea urchin Strogylocentrotus purpuratus larva. Subsequently, we applied single cell transcriptomics to investigate the molecular signature of the Sp-Opsin3.2 cells, and show that they deploy an ancient regulatory program responsible for photoreceptors specification. Finally, we also discuss the possible functions of the Opsin3.2 cells based on their molecular fingerprint, and we suggest that they are involved in a variety of signaling pathways, including those entailing the thyrotropin-releasing hormone.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.0294.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Synthetic embryo; embryogenesis; gastrulation; Stem cells
Online: 3 August 2023 (07:16:46 CEST)
During early embryonic development, fertilized one-cell embryos develop into preimplantation blastocysts and subsequently establish three germ layers through gastrulation during post-implantation development. In recent years, stem cells have emerged as a powerful tool to study embryogenesis and gastrulation without the need for eggs, allowing the generation of embryo-like structures known as synthetic embryos or embryoids. These in vitro models closely resemble early embryos in terms of morphology and gene expression and provide a faithful recapitulation of early pre- and post-implantation embryonic development. Synthetic embryos can be generated through a combinatorial culture of three blastocyst-derived stem cell types, such as embryonic stem cells, trophoblast stem cells, and extraembryonic endoderm cells, or totipotent-like stem cells alone. This review provides an overview of the progress and various approaches in studying in vitro embryogenesis and gastrulation using stem cells. Furthermore, recent findings and breakthroughs in synthetic embryos and gastruloids are outlined. Despite ethical considerations, synthetic embryo models hold promise for understanding mammalian (including human) embryonic development and have potential implications for regenerative medicine and developmental research.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.2098.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: epicardium; heterogeneity; cardiac development; cardiac repair
Online: 31 July 2023 (10:39:22 CEST)
The outermost layer of the heart, the epicardium, is an essential cell population that contributes, through epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), to form different cell types and provide paracrine signals to the developing heart. Despite its quiescent state during adulthood, in response to cardiac injury, adult epicardium reactivates and recapitulates many aspects of embryonic cardiogenesis supporting cardiac tissue remodeling. Thus, the epicardium has been considered as a crucial source of cell progenitors with important contribution to developing and injured heart. Although several studies have provided evidence about cell fate determination in the epicardium, to date it is unclear whether epicardial-derived cells (EPDCs) come from specific, and previously predetermined, epicardial cell subpopulations or if they are derived from a common progenitor. In recent years, different approaches have been used to study cell heterogeneity within the epicardial layer by using different experimental models. However, generated data are still insufficient to understand the complexity of this epithelial layer. In this review, we summarize the previous works supporting the cellular composition, molecular signatures and diversity within the developing and adult epicardium.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1756.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: endometrial stromal cells; senescence; oncogenes; cancer; HRASG12V
Online: 26 July 2023 (10:39:31 CEST)
Being the major cellular component of highly dynamic tissue endometrial stromal cells (EnSC) are exposed to cycles of proliferation upon hormonal stimulation what might pose risks for mutations accumulation and malignization. However, endometrial stromal tumors are rare and unusual types of tumor. The present study aimed to uncover defense mechanisms that might underlie resistance of EnSC against oncogenic transformation. All experiments were performed in vitro using the following methods: FACS, WB, RT-PCR, IF, molecular cloning, lentiviral transduction, and CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing. We revealed that expression of the mutant HRASG12V results in senescence of EnSC. We experimentally confirmed inability of HRASG12V-expressing EnSC to bypass senescence and resume proliferation even upon oestrogen stimulation. At the molecular level, induction of oncogene-induced senescence (OIS) was accompanied by the activation of MEK/ERK, PI3K/AKT, p53/p21WAF/CIP/Rb and p38/p16INK4a/Rb pathways, however inhibiting either pathway did not prevent cell cycle arrest. PTEN loss was established as the additional feature of HRASG12V-induced senescence of EnSC. By using CRISPR-Cas9 mediated PTEN knockout, we distinguished PTEN loss-induced senescence as a reserve molecular mechanism to prevent transformation of HRASG12V-expressing EnSC. The present study highlights oncogene-induced senescence as an antitumor defense mechanism of EnSC controlled by multiple backup molecular pathways.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1596.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: lymphatic vessel; scanning electron microscopy; irradiated tissue; intussusceptive lymphangiogenesis; lymphedema
Online: 25 July 2023 (10:00:08 CEST)
Under inflammatory conditions including lymphatic disorders, bone marrow-derived myeloid cells often express lymphatic endothelial cell (LEC) markers called LEC progenitor cells, which extend lymphatic vessels by fusing with existing lymphatic vessels. However, studies on the mechanism of lymphatic regeneration using three-dimensional images of lymphatic structures are limited. In this study, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was used to observe the three-dimensional structure of lymphangiogenesis in a mouse model of secondary lymphedema. The model was established in C57BL/6J mice via circumferential incision in the inguinal region of the left hind limb. Skin samples were obtained from the lymphedema region on days 2, 5, and 8 after surgery. To determine lymphatic vessel positions using SEM analysis, we detected anti-lymphatic vessel endothelial hyaluronan receptor 1 (LYVE-1) immunoreactivity in serial sections and overlaid them during SEM observation. On days 2 and 5, spherical cells, probably myeloid cells, were attached and fused to the LYVE-1-positive lymphatic vessel walls. On day 8, spherical cells were converted to string-shaped cells, forming a new lymphatic vessel wall resembling an intraluminal pillar. Our results show the three-dimensional lymphatic structures formed during lymphatic regeneration.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1635.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Endoplasmic reticulum; endoplasmic reticulum stress; embryo; in vitro culture; tudca; vitrification
Online: 25 July 2023 (08:13:17 CEST)
During embryo development, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) acts as an important site for protein biosynthesis, however, in vitro culture (IVC) can negatively affect ER homeostasis. Thereby, the aim of our study was to evaluate the effects of supplementation of tauroursodeoxycholic acid (TUDCA), an ER stress inhibitor, in the IVC of bovine embryos. Two experiments were carried out: Exp. 1: evaluation of blastocyst rate, hatching kinetics and gene expression of hatched embryos after being treated with different concentrations of TUDCA (50, 200 or 1,000 μM) in the IVC; Exp. 2: evaluation of the re-expansion, hatching, and gene expression of hatched embryos previously treated with 200 µM of TUDCA at IVC and submitted to vitrification. There was no increase in the blastocyst and hatched blastocyst rates treated with TUDCA in the IVC. However, embryos submitted to vitrification after treatment with 200 µM of TUDCA, increased hatching rate post-warming, together with a down-regulation in the expression of ER stress-related genes and the accumulation of lipids. In conclusion, this work showed that the addition of TUDCA during in vitro culture can improve the cryotolerance of the bovine blastocyst through the putative modulation of ER and oxidative stress.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1589.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: aging; biomarkers; lncRNA; NEAT1; PURPL; RRAD; senescence; smooth muscle cells
Online: 24 July 2023 (10:02:09 CEST)
Cellular senescence is characterized by permanent proliferation and migration arrest, senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP), and oxidative stress. Senescent vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) contribute to cardiovascular diseases and atherosclerotic plaque instability. To establish and characterize a model of replicative senescence (RS), human aortic VSMCs were serially passaged to represent different stages of RS such as young proliferating cells and old/senescent non-proliferating cells. More than 50% of old cells stained positive for the senescence-associated β-galactosidase compared to 20% of young cells. Old cells have a slower proliferation rate, a migratory activity reduced by 50%, but increased levels of TP53 and of cell cycle inhibitors p21/p16 expression, and accumulate in the G1 phase. Old cells showed a flattened appearance and enlarged and regular nuclei, and downregulation of the expression of LMNB1 and HMGB1. Old cells showed also an increased expression of SASP molecules (IL1β, IL6, IL8, and MMP3). Moreover, among a set of 12 manually selected long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), we detected significant upregulation of PURPL and NEAT1. We observed also increased levels of RRAD mRNA. The detection of novel molecular markers of senescence, such as RRAD, PURPL, and NEAT1, could be helpful for future studies on potential anti-aging factors.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1538.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: troglophilia; ontogeny; eye structure; size of Organ of Bellonci; sensory pore organ
Online: 22 July 2023 (17:11:54 CEST)
Why do the eyes remain comparatively large whereas the cornea is reduced in most troglobiont mysids? Are there any important organ size-dependent functions served by non-visual eye rudiments? This issue was approached by measuring eye structures in five troglobiont species of Mysida and two Stygiomysida compared with 14 troglophile and 49 trogloxene Mysida species. The Organ of Bellonci (OB) was found in all Mysida and as first records also in Stygiomysida. The length of OBs increased with individual body length and eye length in four examined species: from postnauplioid larvae to adult stage in a troglophile and a trogloxene mysid species examined; and from juveniles to adults in a troglobiont mysid and a troglobiont stygiomysid. At the interspecific level, eye length was on average 26% shorter at a given body length while the OB was 40% longer at a given body length and 54% longer at a given eye length, respectively, in adult troglobionts compared with trogloxene mysids. The OB is clearly proliferating while the cornea is reduced in troglobionts. This points to sensory functions (possibly together with other functions). The sensory pore organ was found in all 15 Mysida species whose eyes were mounted on slides, and a first record of this organ was also found in Stygiomysida.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0046.v2
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: cancer; circulating tumour cell clusters; metastasis; TGF-β1; extravasation; phenotypic plasticity
Online: 19 July 2023 (02:38:28 CEST)
Background: As cancer progresses, cells acquire traits that allow them to disperse and disseminate to distant locations in the body – a process known as metastasis. While in the vasculature, these cells are referred to as circulating tumour cells (CTCs) and can manifest either as single cells or clusters of cells (i.e., CTC clusters), with the latter being the most aggressive. The increased metastatic potential of CTC clusters is generally associated with cooperative group benefits in terms of survival, such as increased resistance to shear stress, anoikis, immune attacks and drugs. However, the adoption of a group phenotype poses a challenge when exiting the vasculature (extravasation) as the large size can hinder the passage through vessel walls. Despite their significant role in the metastatic process, the mechanisms through which CTC clusters extravasate remain largely unknown. Based on the observed in vivo association between CTC clusters and platelets, we hypothesized that cancer cells take advantage of the platelet-derived Transforming Growth Factor Beta 1 (TGF-β1) – a signalling factor that has been widely implicated in many aspects of cancer, to facilitate their own dissemination. To address this possibility, we evaluated the effect of exogenous TGF-β1 on an experimentally evolved non-small lung cancer cell line that we previously developed and used to investigate the biology of CTC clusters. Results: We found that exogenous TGF-β1 induced the dissociation of clusters into adherent single cells. Once adhered, cells released their own TGF-β1 and were able to individually migrate and invade in the absence of exogenous TGF-β1. Based on these findings we developed a model that involves a TGF-β1-mediated plastic switch between a cooperative phenotype and a single-celled stage that enables the extravasation of CTC clusters. Conclusions: This model allows for the possibility that therapies can be developed against TGF-β1 signalling components and/or TGF-β1 target genes to suppress the metastatic potential of CTC clusters. Considering the negative impact that metastasis has on cancer prognosis and the lack of therapies against this process, interfering with the ability of CTC clusters to switch between cooperative and individual behaviours could provide new strategies to improve patient survival.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1248.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: mitochondria; simulated microgravity; cellular spheroids; TCam-2 cells; oxidative stress; antioxidant barrier
Online: 18 July 2023 (13:49:21 CEST)
One of the hallmarks of microgravity-induced effects in several cellular models is represented by the alteration of oxidative balance with the consequent accumulation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS). It is well known that male germ cells are sensitive to oxidative stress and to changes of gravitational force even if published data on germ cell models are scarce. To gain more insights into the mechanisms of male germ cell response to altered gravity, a 3D cell culture model has been established from TCam-2 cells, a seminoma-derived cell line considered the only human cell line available to study in vitro mitotically active human male germ cells. TCam-2 cell spheroids were cultured for 24 hours under unitary gravity (Ctr) or simulated microgravity (s-microgravity) conditions, these last ones were obtained using the Random Positioning Machine (RPM). A significant increase in intracellular ROS and mitochondria superoxide anion levels has been observed after RPM exposure. In line with these results a trend of protein and lipid oxidation increase, and increased pCAMKII expression levels were observed after RPM exposure. The ultrastructural analysis by Transmission Electron Microscopy revealed that RPM-exposed mitochondria appeared enlarged and, even if seldom, disrupted. Notably, even the expression of the main enzymes involved in the redox homeostasis appears modulated by RPM exposure in a compensatory way, being GPX1, NCF1, and CYBB downregulated, whereas NOX4 and HMOX1 upregulated. Interestingly, HMOX1 is involved in the heme catabolism of mitochondria cytochromes, and therefore the positive modulation of this marker can be associated to the observed mitochondria alteration. All together, these data demonstrate TCam-2 spheroid sensitivity to acute SM exposure and indicate the capability of these cells to trigger compensatory mechanisms that allow to overcome the exposure to altered gravitational force.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1158.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: insect vector; somatic polyploidy; chromocenters; Malpighian tubules; epigenetics; valproic acid; valproate
Online: 18 July 2023 (08:47:50 CEST)
Triatoma infestans (Klug) is an insect recognized as not only an important vector of South-American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease) but also a model of specific cellular morphofunctional organization and epigenetic characteristics. The purpose of the present review is to highlight certain cellular processes that are particularly unveiled in T. infestans, such as 1) somatic polyploidy involving nuclear and cell fusions that generate giant nuclei; 2) diversification of nuclear phenotypes in the Malpighian tubules during insect development; 3) heterochromatin compartmentalization into large bodies with specific spatial distribution and presumed mobility in the cell nuclei; 4) chromatin remodeling and co-occurrence of necrosis and apoptosis in the Malpighian tubules under stress conditions; 5) epigenetic markers; 6) unexplained response of heterochromatin to valproic acid, an epidrug that inhibits histone deacetylases and induces DNA demethylation in other cell systems. These cellular processes and epigenetic characteristics emphasize the role of T. infestans as an attractive model for cellular research.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0798.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Autophagy; Cisplatin; MSCs; Ovaries; Rapamycin; Rats
Online: 12 July 2023 (09:36:41 CEST)
Purpose: We aimed to evaluate the impact of preconditioning adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ADMSCs) with the autophagy inducer rapamycin (Rapa) on Cisplatin (Cis) induced ovarian toxicity in a rat model. Methods: ADMSCs were pretreated with 50 nmol/L rapa for two h in vitro. Another in vivo study included 96 female Sprague-Dawley rats divided into four equal groups: control, Cis, Cis +ADMSCs, and Cis +ADMSCs + Rapa. Rats were sacrificed after 2 and 6 weeks. Each group was subdivided into two equal subgroups: 6 rats were sacrificed to study ovarian parameters, and six were left for mating to evaluate the fertility index. Results: Autophagy activation was detected in ADMSCs + Rapa by increasing autophagosomes, high autophagy-specific LC3-II gene and protein expression, and low expression of p62 and mTOR genes. Moreover, transplantation of ADMSCs + Rapa restored balance between E2, FSH, and LH, increased antioxidant activity, and improved follicular count and quality after 2 and 6 weeks of treatment. Fertility index analysis manifested restoring reproductive capacity in the ADMSCs+ Rapa group at both intervals. Conclusions: Autophagy induction could enhance the therapeutic capability of ADMSCs by deactivating the mTOR pathway, which in turn promotes the ovarian folliculogenesis process after exposure to Cis.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0769.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: airway epithelial cells; cell culture; MACS; dispase; cold lung digestion
Online: 12 July 2023 (08:57:55 CEST)
Airway epithelial cells (AECs) play a key role in maintaining lung homeostasis, epithelium regeneration and the initiation of pulmonary immune responses. To isolate and study murine AECs investigators have classically used short and hot (1h 37°C) digestion protocols. Here, we present a workflow for efficient AECs isolation and culture, utilizing long and cold (20h 4°C) dispase II digestion of murine lungs. This protocol yields a greater number of viable AECs compared to an established 1h 37°C dispase II digestion. Using a combination of flow cytometry and immunofluorescent microscopy, we demonstrate that compared to the established method, the cold digestion allows for recovery of a 3-fold higher number of CD45-CD31-EpCAM+ cells from murine lungs. Their viability is increased compared to established protocols, they can be isolated in larger numbers by magnetic-activated cell sorting (MACS), and they result in greater numbers of KRT5+p63+ colonies in vitro. Our findings demonstrate that temperature and duration of murine lung enzymatic digestion have a considerable impact on AEC yield, viability, and ability to form colonies in vitro. We believe this workflow will be helpful for studying lung AECs and their role in the biology of lung.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0561.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: embryonic stem cells; pluripotency; HUSH complex
Online: 10 July 2023 (08:34:39 CEST)
Mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) possess remarkable characteristics of unlimited self-renewal and pluripotency, which render them highly valuable for both fundamental research and clinical applications. A comprehensive understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying mESC function is of utmost importance. The Human Silence Hub (HUSH) complex, comprising FAM208A, MPP8, and periphilin, constitutes an epigenetic silencing complex involved in suppressing retroviruses and transposons during early embryonic development. However, its precise role in regulating mESC pluripotency and differentiation remains elusive. In this study, we generated homogenous miniIAA7 tagged Mpp8 mouse ES cell lines. Upon induction of MPP8 protein degradation, we observed impaired proliferation and reduced colony formation ability of mESCs. Furthermore, this study unveils the involvement of MPP8 in regulating the activity of the LIF/STAT3 signaling pathway and Nanog expression in mESCs. Finally, we provide compelling evidence that degradation of the MPP8 protein impairs the differentiation of mESC.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0502.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: oncogenic Ras, overgrowth, tensins, Drosophila
Online: 10 July 2023 (04:01:14 CEST)
Oncogenic mutations in the small GTPase Ras contributes to ~30% of human cancers. However, tissue growth induced by oncogenic Ras is restrained by induction of cellular senescence and additional mutations are required to induce tumor progression. Therefore, it is paramount to identify cooperating cancer genes. Recently, the tensin family of focal adhesion proteins, TNS1-4, have emerged as regulators of carcinogenesis, yet their role in cancer appears somewhat controversial. Around 90% of human cancers are of epithelial origin. We have used the Drosophila wing imaginal disc epithelium as model system to gain insight into the roles of two orthologs of human TNS2 and 4, blistery (by) and PVRAP, in epithelial cancer progression. We have generated null mutations in PVRAP and found that, as it is the case for by and mammalian tensins, PVRAP mutants are viable. We have also found that elimination of either PVRAP or by potentiates RasV12-mediated wing disc hyperplasia. Furthermore, our results have unravelled a mechanism by which tensins may limit Ras oncogenic capacity, the regulation of cell shape and growth. These results demonstrate that Drosophila tensins behave as suppressors of Ras-driven tissue hyperplasia, suggesting that the roles of tensins as modulators of cancer progression might be evolutionary conserved.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0403.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Bulbar melanocytes; Hair Follicle (HF); Follicular-Melanin-Unit (FMU); Melanin; C-KIT; MITF; SOX10; Melan A
Online: 6 July 2023 (09:04:00 CEST)
The visual appearance of humans derives significantly from our skin and hair color. While melanin from epidermal melanocytes protects our skin from the damaging effects of ultraviolet radiation, the biological value of pigmentation in the hair follicle, particularly in the scalp, is less clear. In this study, we explore the heterogeneity of pigment cells in the human scalp anagen hair follicle bulb, a site conventionally viewed to be focused solely on pigment production for transfer to the hair shaft. Using c-KIT/CD117 microbeads, we isolated bulbar c-KIT-positive and c-KIT-negative melanocytes. While both subpopulations expressed MITF, only the c-KIT-positive fraction expressed SOX10. We further localized bulbar melanocyte subpopulations (expressing c-KIT, SOX10, MITF, and DCT) that exhibited distinct/variable expression of downstream differentiation-associated melanosome markers (e.g., gp100 and Melan-A). Localization of a second ‘immature’ SOX10 negative melanocyte population, which was c-KIT/MITF double positive, was identified outside of the melanogenic zone in the most peripheral/proximal matrix. These studies describe an approach to purifying human scalp anagen hair bulb melanocytes, allowing us to identify unexpected levels of melanocyte heterogeneity. The function of the more immature melanocytes in this part of the hair follicle remains to be elucidated. Could they be in-transit migratory cells destined to synthesize mela-nin ultimately or could they contribute to the hair follicle in non-melanogenic ways.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0303.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: stress response; poplar; lignin; bioethanol; cell wall; cell death; biofuels; stress response proteins
Online: 6 July 2023 (03:28:59 CEST)
Production of biofuel from lignocellulosic biomass is relatively low due to the limited knowledge about natural cell wall loosening and cellulolytic processes in plants. Industrial separation of cellulose fiber mass from lignin, its saccharification and alcoholic fermentation is still cost-ineffective and environmental unfriendly. Assuming that the green transformation is inevitable and that the new sources of raw materials for biofuels are needed, we decided to study cell death - a natural process occurring in plants in a context of reducing the recalcitrance of lignocellulose for production of second generation bioethanol. “members of the enzyme families responsible for lysigenous aerenchyma formation were identified during the root hypoxia stress in Arabidopsis thaliana cell death mutants. The cell death regulatory genes, LESION SIMULATING DISEASE 1 (LSD1), PHYTOALEXIN DEFICIENT 4 (PAD4) and ENHANCED DISEASE SUSCEPTIBILITY 1 (EDS1) conditionally regulate the cell wall when suppressed in transgenic aspen. During four years of growth in the field the following effects were observed: lignin content was reduced, the cellulose fiber polymerization degree increased and the growth itself was unaffected. The wood of transgenic trees was more efficient as a substrate for saccharification, alcoholic fermentation and bioethanol production. The presented results may trigger the development of novel biotechnologies in the biofuel industry.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0324.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: MSI-1436; Eq_HPCs; glucose uptake; palmitate; mitochondrial dynamics/mitophagy
Online: 5 July 2023 (12:21:07 CEST)
Equine metabolic syndrome (EMS) is a major health threat in veterinary endocrinology medicine worldwide, and there is growing interest in utilizing molecular agents for modulation of hepatocyte function for potential clinical applications with recent studies showing promising results in the inhibition of PTP1B on adipose-derived stromal cells. In this study, we investigated the effects of MSI-1436 on equine hepatic progenitor cells (HPCs) in terms of their proliferative activity, glucose uptake, and mitochondrial morphogenesis under lipotoxic condition. Our study found that MSI-1436 promotes the entry of HPCs in the cell cycle and rescues them from palmitate-induced apoptosis by regulating mitochondrial dynamics and biogenesis. MSI-1436 also increases glucose uptake and protects HPCs from palmitate-induced stress by reorganizing the morphological architecture of the cells. Additionally, our findings suggest that MSI-1436 enhances the 2-NBDG internalization by increasing the expression of SIRT1, which is associated with liver insulin sensitivity, and promotes mitochondrial dynamics by modulating their number and morphotype through PINK1, MFN1, and MFN2 increased expression. Our study provides evidence that MSI-1436 has a positive impact on equine hepatic progenitor cells, indicating its potential therapeutic value in the treatment of EMS and insulin dysregulation.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0156.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: stem-cell; differentiation; asymmetric; mitochondria; metabolism; epigenetic; RISP
Online: 4 July 2023 (07:50:23 CEST)
The study of the mechanisms underlying stem cell differentiation is under intensive research, and includes the contribution of a metabolic switch from glycolytic to oxidative metabolism. While mitochondrial biogenesis has been previously demonstrated in number of differentiation models, it is only recently that the role of mitochondrial dynamics has started to be explored. The discovery of asymmetric distribution of mitochondria in stem cell progeny has still strengthened the interest for the field. This review attempts to summarize the regulation of mitochondrial asymmetric apportioning by the mitochondrial fusion, fission and mitophagy processes, as well as to emphasize how asymmetric mitochondrial apportioning in stem cells affects their metabolism, and thus epigenetics, and determines cell fate.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.2130.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Human Pluripotent Stem Cells; Mitotic Fidelity; Aneuploidy
Online: 29 June 2023 (11:37:18 CEST)
Human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs), which include both embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells, are widely used in fundamental and applied biomedical research. They have been instrumental for better understanding development and cell differentiation processes, disease origin and progression, and can aid in the discovery of new drugs. PSCs also hold great potential in regenerative medicine to treat or diminish the effects of certain debilitating diseases, such as degenerative disorders. However, some concerns have recently been raised over their safety for the use in regenerative medicine. One of the major concerns is the fact that PSCs are prone to errors in passing the correct number of chromosomes to daughter cells, resulting in aneuploid cells. Aneuploidy, characterised by an imbalance in chromosome number, elicits the upregulation of different stress pathways that are deleterious to cell homeostasis, impair proper embryo development and can potentiate cancer development. In this review we will summarise known molecular mechanisms recently revealed to impair mitotic fidelity in human PSCs and the consequences of the decreased mitotic fidelity of these cells. We will finish with speculative views on how the physiological characteristics of PSCs can affect the mitotic machinery and how their suboptimal mitotic fidelity may be circumvented.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.1885.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: prevalent molecular chirality; bilaterality; pyramidal neuron; evolution
Online: 27 June 2023 (11:20:58 CEST)
In bilaterians organism, the signaling of pyramidal neurons (PyrNs) is linked to the relative (prevalent) molecular chirality and physiological, perceptual, cognitive, and psychological functions and dysfunctions, providing the coupling of the central nervous system downstream and upstream evolutionary and developmental processes. The most apparent and discriminating morphological specificity of PyrNs is the geometry of the cell body. However, the question "why/how PyrNs soma gains the shape of quasi-tetrahedral symmetry" has never been explicitly articulated. If the basic function of PyrNs is sensory space perception, supporting the orientation, and movement coordination, then the pyramidal shape of soma is the best evolutionary-selected geometry to perform sensory-motor coupling. In biology, the impact of chiral symmetry (handedness) is evident at all levels of biological organization, from the prevalent symmetry of biological molecules to the morphology and function of bilateral organisms. How the tetrahedral symmetry of biomolecules is linked to the morphology and functions of bilateral organisms remains a challenging question. Cell chirality represents an intermediate point connecting two poles of biochirality. In this holistic perspective, examining the PyrNs' morphology-circuitry-function link is crucial to understanding the complex interaction between genetic, epigenetic, and environmental factors in the evolution of the CNS. The predictive power of our hypothesis can be partially expressed by the statement that the most integral and reliable biomarker of the neurodegenerative (including aging) and mental (including all variants of psychiatric illness) disorders would be the detection of the hemispheric asymmetry of D-amino acids (D-AAs) level in pyramidal neurons (PyrNs).
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.1715.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: liver; hiPSC; organoids; 3D dynamic culture; organotypic culture
Online: 25 June 2023 (05:08:36 CEST)
The process of identifying and approving a new drug is a time-consuming and expensive procedure. One of the biggest issues to overcome is the risk of hepatotoxicity, which is one of the main reasons for drug withdrawal from the market. While animal models are the gold standard in preclinical drug testing, the translation of results into therapeutic intervention is often ambiguous due to interspecies differences in hepatic metabolism. The discovery of human induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (hiPSCs) and their derivatives has opened new possibilities for drug testing. We used mesenchymal stem cells and hepatocytes both derived from hiPSC, together with endothelial cells, to miniaturize the process of generating hepatic organoids. These organoids were then cultivated in vitro using both static and dynamic cultures. Additionally, we tested spheroids composed solely by induced hepatocytes. By miniaturizing the system, we demonstrated the possibility of maintaining the organoids, but not the spheroids, in culture for up to 15 days. This timeframe may be sufficient to carry out a hypothetical pharmacological test or screening. In conclusion, we propose that the hiPSC-derived liver organoids model could complement or, in the near future, replace the pharmacological and toxicological tests conducted on animals.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.1713.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Saussurea neoserrata Nakai; preparative liquid chromatography; particulate matter; antioxidant; protocatechuic acid; syringin
Online: 25 June 2023 (05:02:08 CEST)
Saussurea neoserrata Nakai offers a reliable and efficient source of antioxidants that can help alleviate adverse skin reactions triggered by air pollutants. Air pollutants, such as particulate matter (PM), have the ability to infiltrate the skin and contribute to the higher occurrence of cardiovascular, cerebrovascular, and respiratory ailments. Individuals with compromised skin barriers are particularly susceptible to the impact of PM since it can be absorbed more readily through the skin. This study investigated the impact of protocatechuic acid and syringin, obtained from the n-BuOH extract of S. neoserrata Nakai, on the release of PGE2 and PGD2 induced by PM10. Additionally, it examined the gene expression of enzymes involved in the synthesis of PGE2 and PGD2 in human keratinocytes. The findings of this research highlight the potential of utilizing safe and efficient plant-derived antioxidants in dermatological and cosmetic applications to mitigate the negative skin reactions caused by exposure to air pollution.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.1441.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: bovine embryonic stem cells (bESCs); pluripotent; H3K4me1 modification; DNA methylation modification
Online: 20 June 2023 (12:21:40 CEST)
Mixed lineage leukemia 1 (MLL1) introduces 1-, 2- and 3-methylation into histone H3K4 through the evolutionarily conserved set domain. In this study, bovine embryonic stem cells (bESCs, named bESCs-F7) were established from the in vitro fertilized (IVF) embryos by Wnt signaling inhibition, while its contribution to endoderm in vivo is limited. To improve the quality of bESCs, MM-102, an inhibitor of MLL1, was applied to the culture. The results showed that MLL1 inhibition along with GSK3 and MAP2K inhibition (3i) at the embryonic stage did not affect bESCs establishment and pluripotency. MLL1 inhibition improves the pluripotency and differentiation potentials of bESCs via up-regulation of stem cell signaling pathways such as PI3K-Akt and WNT. MLL1 inhibition decreases H3K4me1 modification at promoters in bESCs and altered the distribution of DNA methylation in bESCs. In summary, MLL1 inhibition enables bESCs to acquire better pluripotency, and its application may provide high quality pluripotent stem cells for domestic animals.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.1436.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: NASH; Lipotoxicity; NAFLD; extracellular RNA; RNase1; TLR3
Online: 20 June 2023 (11:38:31 CEST)
Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is a clinically serious stage of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Histologically characterized by hepatocyte ballooning, immune cell infiltration and fibrosis, NASH at a molecular level involves lipid induced hepatocyte death and cytokine production. Currently, there are very few diagnostic biomarkers available to screen NASH, and no pharmacological intervention is available for its treatment. In this study, we show that hepatocyte damage by lipotoxicity results in the release of extracellular RNAs (eRNAs) which serve as damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) that stimulate the expression of pro-apoptotic and pro-inflammatory cytokines, aggravating inflammation, and cell death in HepG2 cells. Furthermore, the inhibition of eRNA activity by RNase 1 significantly increased cellular viability and reduced NF-kB mediated cytokine production. Similarly, RNase 1 administration significantly improved hepatic steatosis, inflammatory and injury markers in a murine NASH model. This study, therefore, for the first time, underscores the therapeutic potential of inhibiting eRNA action as a novel strategy for NASH treatment.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0865.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Diabtetic retinoapthy; Exosomes; extracellular vesicles; precision medicine
Online: 13 June 2023 (03:08:48 CEST)
Diabetes and diabetes-induced micro and macrovascular complications are major causes of healthcare problems. The extracellular vesicles are produced by all cells from all organisms. They are shown to have properties of the producer cells and also reflect the host physiology and pathology. Since the EVs represent the cellular state they are excellent biomarkers. In this review, we will focus on the EVs produced by the Neuro Vascular Unit cells of the eye as well as the extraocular cells in the onset and progression of diabetic retinopathy. A brief account of the use of these nanovesicles in personalised medicine is also given.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0864.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: septin 9; apico-basal polarity; TGFbeta; RhoA; polybasic domain
Online: 13 June 2023 (03:03:51 CEST)
The cytoskeleton is a master organizer of cell cortex, organelles positioning and membrane trafficking. Therefore, playing a decisive role in establishment of apico-basal polarity. Septins are critical cytoskeleton components which function in apico-basal polarity remain weakly investigated. Here, using 3D culture system, we demonstrate that septin9 localizes at basolateral membrane (BM). Its depletion induces an inverted polarity phenotype, decreasing -catenin at BM and increasing the expression of the transforming growth factor (TGF) and the epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) markers. Similar effects were observed upon deleting its two polybasic domains, and the mutant become cytoplasmic and apical. The cysts with an inverted polarity phenotype display an invasive phenotype, with src and cortactin accumulating at the peripheric membrane. Inhibition of TGF-receptor and RhoA rescues the polarized phenotype. Although the cysts from overexpressed-septin 9, overgrowth and present a filled lumen. Both phenotypes correspond to tumor features. This suggests that septin 9 expression and assembly through the two PB domains are essential for establishing and maintaining apico-basal polarity against tumor development through a mechanism involving TGF-dependent EMT and RhoA activity.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0751.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation (ERAD); EDEM1; ER chaperone; EGF receptor; TSP1
Online: 12 June 2023 (03:58:21 CEST)
Secretory and membrane proteins are vital for cell activities, including intra- and intercellular communication. Therefore, protein quality control in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is an essential and crucial process for eukaryotic cells. Endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation (ERAD) targets misfolded proteins during the protein maturation process in the ER and leads to their disposal. This process maintains the ER productive function and prevents misfolded protein stress (i.e., ER stress). The ERAD-stimulating factor ER degradation-enhancing α mannosidase-like 1 protein (EDEM1) acts on misfolded proteins to accelerate ERAD, thereby maintaining the productivity of the ER. However, the detail mechanism underlying the function of EDEM1 in ERAD is not completely understood due to lack of established physiological substrate proteins. In this study, we attempted to identify substrate proteins for EDEM1 using siRNA. The matrix component thrombospondin-1 (TSP1) and epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) were identified as candidate targets of EDEM1. Their protein maturation status and cellular localization were markedly affected by knockdown of EDEM1. We also showed that EDEM1 physically associates with EGFR and enhances EGFR degradation via ERAD. Our data highlight the physiological role of EDEM1 in maintaining specific target proteins and provide a potential approach to the regulation of expression of clinically important proteins.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0642.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: basal breast cancer; extracellular matrix remodeling; ferroptosis; transcriptome; text mining
Online: 8 June 2023 (11:21:03 CEST)
(1) Background: Breast cancer is a frequent heterogeneous disorder diagnosed in woman and is a high cause of mortality of them in reason to rapid metastasis and disease recurrence. Ferroptosis can inhibit breast cancer cell growth, improve the sensitivity of chemotherapy and radiotherapy and inhibit distant metastases so potentially acts on tumor micro-environment; (2) Methods: Ferroptosis/Extracellular matrix remodeling literature text-mining results were integrated in breast cancer transcriptome cohort according their distant relapse free survival (DRFS) under adjuvant therapy (anthracyclin+taxanes) and also in MDA-MB-231 transcriptome functional experiments with ferroptosis activations (GSE173905); (3) Results: Ferroptosis/Extracellular matrix remodeling text-mining identified 910 associated genes in at list 10 articles. Univariate Cox analyses censored on breast cancer (GSE25066) selected 252 individual significant genes and 171 of them found with an adverse expression. Functional enrichment of these 171 adverse genes predicted basal breast cancer signatures. By text-mining some ferroptosis significant adverse selected genes shared citations in domain of ECM remodeling such as: TNF, IL6, SET, CDKN2A, EGFR, HMGB1, KRAS, MET, LCN2, HIF1A, TLR4. A molecular score based on expression the eleven genes was found predictive of worst prognosis breast cancer at univariate level: basal subtype, short DRFS, high grade values 3 and 4, estrogen and progesterone receptors negative and nodal stages 2 and 3. This eleven gene signature was validated as regulated by ferroptosis inductors (erastin and RSL3) in triple negative breast cancer cellular model MDA-MB-231.; (4) Conclusions: Crosstalk between ECM remodeling-Ferroptosis functionalities allowed to define a molecular score which have been characterized as an independent adverse parameter in prognosis of breast cancer patients. Gene signature of this molecular score have been validated to be regulated by erastin/RSL3 ferroptosis activators. This molecular score could be promising to evaluate ECM impact of ferroptosis target therapies in breast cancer.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0501.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Drosophila; miR-274; melanotic mass; growth; JNK signaling; JAK/STAT signaling; found-in-neurons
Online: 7 June 2023 (07:12:24 CEST)
The hematopoietic system plays a crucial role in immune defense response and normal development, and is regulated by various factors from other tissues. The dysregulation of hematopoiesis is associated with melanotic mass formation; however, the molecular mechanisms underlying this process are poorly understood. Here, we observed that the overexpression of miR-274 in the fat body resulted in the formation of melanotic masses. Moreover, abnormal activation of the JNK and JAK/STAT signaling pathways was linked to these consequences. In addition to this defect, miR-274 overexpression in the larval fat body decreased the total tissue mass, leading to a reduction in body weight. miR-274-5p was found to directly suppress the expression of found-in-neurons (fne), which encodes an RNA-binding protein. Similar to the effects of miR-274 overexpression, fne depletion led to melanotic mass formation and growth reduction. Collectively, miR-274 plays a regulatory role in the fne-JNK signaling axis in melanotic mass formation and growth control.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0464.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Calcium phosphate; calciprotein particles; nanoclusters; intrinsically disordered proteins; crystal toxicity; milk; serum
Online: 6 June 2023 (14:19:16 CEST)
Management of calcium and phosphate in biofluids is key to maintaining physiological mineral homeostasis (i.e., appropriate mineralization of hard tissues and an absence of mineral deposition in soft tissues). This review describes and contrasts the ways vertebrates manage calcium phosphate in two biological fluids (breast milk and serum) and illustrates the benefits of mineral sequestration by proteins. In milk, phosphoprotein-sequestered calcium magnesium phosphates provide nutritional support, whereas in serum, protein-sequestered calcium phosphates control transport and delivery of calcium and phosphate to tissues for biological function or excretion. In addition, subsets of sequestered phosphates in serum have been identified as culprits underlying ectopic deposition of calcium phosphates and toxicity.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0177.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: ferroptosis; cancer; EMT; angiogenesis; metastasis
Online: 2 June 2023 (10:12:45 CEST)
Ferroptosis is a newly discovered iron-dependent form of regulated cell death driven by phospholipid peroxidation, associated with processes including iron overload, lipid peroxidation and dysfunction of cellular antioxidant systems. Ferroptosis is found closely related to many diseases including cancer, at its every stage. Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in malignant tumors that originate from epithelia promotes cancer cell migration, invasion and metastasis by disrupting cell-cell and cell-martrix junctions, cell polarity, etc. Recent studies have shown that ferroptosis appears to share multiple initiators and overlapping pathways with EMT in cancers and identify ferroptosis as a potential predictor of various cancer grade and prognosis. Cancer metastasis involves multiple steps including local invasion of cancer cells, intravasation, survival in circulation, arrest at a distant organ site, extravasation and adaptation to foreign tissue microenvironments, angiogenesis and the formation of “premetastatic niche”. Numerous studies have revealed that ferroptosis is closely associated with cancer metastasis. From the cellular perspective, ferroptosis has been implicated in the regulation of cancer metastasis. From the molecular perspective, the signaling pathways activated during the two events interweave. This review briefly introduces the mechanisms of ferroptosis, and discusses how ferroptosis is involved in cancer progression including EMT, cancer angiogenesis, invasion and metastasis.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0170.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Long-COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; Endothelial cells; Cognitive dysfunction; Blood Brain Barrier; Neuro-inflammation
Online: 2 June 2023 (09:38:56 CEST)
As the name implies, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a single-stranded RNA virus and a member of the corona virus family, primarily affecting the upper respiratory system and the lungs. Like many other respiratory viruses, SARS-CoV-2 can spread to other organ systems. Apart from causing diarrhea, another most common but debilitating complication caused by the SARS-CoV-2 is neurological symptoms and cognitive difficulties, which occur in up to two thirds of hospitalized covid patients and ranging from shortness of concentration, overall declined cognitive speed to executive or memory function impairment. Neuro-cognitive dysfunction and “brain fog” are frequently present in COVID-19 cases, which can last several months after the infection, leading to disruption of daily life. Cumulative evidence suggests that SARS-CoV-2 affects vasculature in the extra pulmonary systems directly or indirectly, leading to impairment of endothelial function and even multi-organ damage. The post COVID-19 long-lasting neurocognitive impairments have not been studied fully; and the underlying mechanism remains elusive. In this review, we summarize the current understanding of the effects of COVID-19 on vascular dysfunction and how vascular dysfunction leads to cognitive impairment in patients.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0109.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: triple negative breast cancer; MCAK/KIF2C; aneuploidy; chromosomal instability; drug discovery
Online: 1 June 2023 (15:47:29 CEST)
Standard of care for triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) involves the use of microtubule poisons like paclitaxel, which are proposed to work by inducing lethal levels of aneuploidy in tumor cells. While these drugs are initially effective in treating cancer, dose-limiting peripheral neuropathies are common. Unfortunately, patients often relapse with drug resistant tumors. Identifying agents against targets that limit aneuploidy may be a valuable approach for therapeutic development. One potential target is the microtubule depolymerizing kinesin, MCAK, which limits aneuploidy by regulating microtubule dynamics during mitosis. Using publicly available datasets, we found that MCAK is upregulated in triple negative breast cancer and is associated with poorer prognoses. Knockdown of MCAK in tumor-derived cell lines caused a two- to five-fold reduction in the IC50 for paclitaxel, without affecting normal cells. Using FRET and image-based assays, we screened compounds from the ChemBridge 50k library and discovered three putative MCAK inhibitors. These compounds reproduced the aneuploidy-inducing phenotype of MCAK loss, reduced clonogenic survival of TNBC cells regardless of taxane-resistance, and the most potent of the three, C4, sensitized TNBC cells to paclitaxel. Collectively, our work shows promise that MCAK may serve as both a biomarker of prognosis and as a therapeutic target.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.2155.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: drug toxicity; budesonide analogues; stem cells; pluripotency exit; 3D gastruloids
Online: 30 May 2023 (13:48:16 CEST)
Small molecules that can modulate or stabilize cell-cell interactions are valuable tools for investigating the impact of collective cell behavior on various biological processes such as development/morphogenesis, tissue regeneration and cancer progression. Recently, we showed that budesonide, a glucocorticoid widely used as anti-asthmatic drug, is a potent regulator of stem cell pluripotency. Here we tested the effect of different budesonide derivatives and identified CHD-030498 as a more effective analogue of budesonide. CHD-030498 was able to prevent stem cell pluripotency exit in different cell-based models, including embryonic stem-to-mesenchymal transition, spontaneous differentiation and 3D gastruloid development, and at lower doses compared to budesonide.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.2122.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Histone modifications; p53; cancer; gene regulation; chromatin structure
Online: 30 May 2023 (11:14:08 CEST)
Chromatin structure plays a fundamental role in regulating gene expression, with histone modifiers shaping the structure of chromatin by adding or removing chemical changes to his-tone proteins. The p53 transcription factor controls gene expression, binds target genes, and regulates their activity. While p53 has been extensively investigated in the context of cancer research, its association with histone modifiers has received limited attention. This review ex-plores the interplay between histone modifiers and p53 in regulating gene expression. We discussed how histone modifications can influence how p53 binds to target genes and how this interplay can be disrupted in cancer cells. This study provides insights into the complex mechanisms underlying gene regulation and their implications for potential cancer therapy.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1655.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Melanin; Melanocyte; Keratinocyte; Melanosome; Melanocore; Melanokerasome; Mlelanin transfer; Melanin processing; Melanin polarization
Online: 23 May 2023 (12:21:10 CEST)
Skin pigmentation ensures efficient photoprotection and relies on the pigment melanin, which is produced by epidermal melanocytes and transferred to surrounding keratinocytes. While the molecular mechanisms of melanin synthesis and transport in melanocytes are now well characterized, much less is known about melanin transfer and processing within keratinocytes. Over the past few decades, distinct models have been proposed to explain how melanin transfer occurs at the cellular and molecular levels. However, this remains a debated topic as up to four different models have been proposed, with evidence presented supporting each. Here, we review the current knowledge on the regulation of melanin exocytosis, internalization, processing and polarization. Regarding the different transfer models, we discuss how these might co-exist to regulate skin pigmentation under different conditions, i.e. constitutive and facultative skin pigmentation or physiological and pathological conditions. Moreover, we discuss recent evidence that sheds light on the regulation of melanin exocytosis by melanocytes and internalization by keratinocytes, as well as how melanin is stored within these cells in a compartment that we proposed to be named melanokerasome. Finally, we review the state of the art on the molecular mechanisms that lead to melanokerasome positioning above the nuclei of keratinocytes, forming supranuclear caps that shield the nuclear DNA from UV radiation. Thus, we provide a comprehensive overview of the current knowledge on the molecular mechanisms regulating skin pigmentation, from melanin exocytosis by melanocytes and internalization by keratinocytes, to processing and polarization within keratinocytes. A better knowledge of these molecular mechanisms will clarify long lasting questions in the field that are crucial for the understanding of skin pigmentation and can shed light on fundamental aspects of organelle biology. Ultimately, this knowledge can lead to novel therapeutic strategies to treat hypo- or hyper-pigmentation disorders, which have a high socio-economic burden to patients and healthcare systems worldwide, as well as having cosmetic applications.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1465.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells (MSC); Synovium; Infrapatellar fat pad (IFP); CD10 (neprilysin); PRG4 (lubricin); Exosomes; Immunomodulation; Pain; Chondroprotection; Inflammatory Joint Diseases
Online: 22 May 2023 (05:17:14 CEST)
The onset and progression of human inflammatory joint diseases are strongly controlled by the activation of resident synovium/infrapatellar fat pad (IFP) pro-inflammatory and pain-transmitting signaling. We recently reported that intra-articularly injected IFP-derived Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells (IFP-MSC) acquire a potent immunomodulatory phenotype and actively degrade Substance P (SP) via neutral endopeptidase CD10 (neprilysin). Our hypothesis is that IFP-MSC robust immunomodulatory therapeutic ef-fects are largely exerted via their CD10-bound exosomal secretome (IFP-MSC EXOs) by attenuating synoviocyte pro-inflammatory activation and articular cartilage degradation. Herein, IFP-MSC EXOs were isolated from CD10High- and CD10Low-expressing IFP-MSC cultures and their exosomal miRNA cargo was assessed using multiplex methods. Functionally, we interrogated the effect of CD10High and CD10Low EXOs on stimulated by inflammatory/fibrotic cues synoviocytes monocultures and cocultures with IFP-MSC de-rived chondropellets. Finally, CD10High EXOs were tested in vivo for their therapeutic capacity in an animal model of acute synovitis/fat pad fibrosis. Our results showed that CD10High and CD10Low EXOs possess distinct miRNA profiles. Reactome analysis of miRNAs highly present in exosomes showed their involvement in the regulation of six gene groups, particularly the immune system. Stimulated synoviocytes exposed to IFP-MSC EXOs demonstrated significantly reduced proliferation and altered inflammation-related molecular profiles compared to control stimulated synoviocytes. Importantly, CD10High EXOs treatment of stimulated chondropellets/synoviocytes cocultures indicated a significant chondroprotective effects. Therapeutically, CD10High EXOs treatment resulted in robust chondroprotective effects by retaining articular cartilage structure/composition and PRG4 (lubricin)-expressing cartilage cells in the animal model of acute synovitis/IFP fibrosis. Our study suggests that CD10High EXOs possess immuno-modulatory miRNA attributes with strong chondroprotective/anabolic effects for articular cartilage in vivo. The results could serve as a foundation for EXOs-based therapeutics for the resolution of detrimental aspects of immune-mediated inflammatory joint changes associated with conditions such as osteoarthritis (OA).
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1252.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: iPSCs; HSCs; RET; Hematopoietic differentiation; CD34
Online: 17 May 2023 (13:49:58 CEST)
Introduction: Previous studies have suggested that the tyrosine kinase receptor RET plays a sig-nificant role in the hematopoietic potential in mice and could also be used to expand cord-blood derived hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs). The role of RET in the human iPSC-derived hematopoi-esis has not been tested so far. Methods: To test the implication of RET on the hematopoietic potential of iPSCs, we activated its pathway with the lentiviral overexpression of RETWT or RETC634Y mutation in normal iPSCs. An iPSC derived from a patient harboring the RETC634Y mutation (iRETC634Y) and its CRISPR-corrected isogenic control iPSC (iRETCTRL) were also used. Hematopoietic potential was tested using 2D cul-tures and evaluated regarding the phenotype and the clonogenic potential of generated cells. Results: Hematopoietic differentiation from iPSCs with RET overexpression (WT or C634Y) led to a significant reduction in the number and in the clonogenic potential of HSCs (CD34+/CD38-/CD49f+) as compared to control iPSCs. Similarly, the hematopoietic potential of iRETC634Y was reduced as compared to iRETCTRL. Transcriptomic analyses revealed a specific ac-tivated expression profile for iRETC634Y compared to its control with evidence of overexpression of genes which are part of the MAPK network with negative hematopoietic regulator activities. Conclusion: RET activation in iPSCs is associated with an inhibitory activity in iPSC-derived hematopoiesis, potentially related with MAPK activation.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1184.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: cell biology; gene expression; adipose tissue; bone; cartilage; intestine; kidney; liver; lung; pancreas; skin
Online: 17 May 2023 (04:41:00 CEST)
Parathyroid-hormone-related protein (PTHrP) is encoded by PTHLH gene which, by alternative promoter usage and splicing mechanisms, can give rise to at least three isoforms of 139, 141 and 173 amino acids with distinct C-terminals. PTHrP is subjected to different post-translational processing that generates smaller bioactive forms, comprising amino terminus, midregion (containing a nuclear/nucleolar targeting signal) and carboxy terminus peptides. Both the full-length protein and the discrete peptides are key controllers of viability, proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis in diverse normal and pathological biological systems via the reprogramming of gene expression and remodulation of PKA or PKC-mediated signalization mechanisms. The aim of this review is to pick up selected studies on PTHrP-associated signatures as revealed by molecular profiling assays, focusing on the available data about exemplary differentiating, differentiated or non-tumoral cell and tissue models. In particular, the data presented relate to adipose, bone, dental, cartilaginous and skin tissues, and also intestinal, renal, hepatic, pulmonary and pancreatic epithelia, with a focus on hepatic fibrosis-, pancreatitis- and diabetes-related changes as diseased states. Whether reported, the biochemical and/or physiological aspects associated with the specific molecular modulation of gene expression and signal transduction pathways in the target model systems under examination will be also briefly commented.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1093.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Timing of mitosis; Cell cycle; CDC6; CDK1; cyclins; CDC25; Xic1; Mitotic entry
Online: 16 May 2023 (05:10:23 CEST)
Timely mitosis is critically important for the early embryo development. It is regulated by the activity of the ubiquitously conserved CDK1 kinase. The dynamics of CDK1 activation must be precisely controlled to assure physiologic and timely entry into mitosis. Recently, a known S-phase regulator CDC6 emerged as a key player in the mitotic CDK1 activation cascade in early embryonic divisions, operating together with Xic1 as a CDK1 inhibitor upstream of the Aurora A- and PLK1 kinases, both CDK1 activators. Herein we review the molecular mechanisms that underlie the control of the mitotic timing, with special emphasis on how CDC6/Xic1 function impacts CDK1 regulatory network. We focus on the presence of two independent mechanisms inhibiting the dynamics of CDK1 activation: Wee1/Myt1- and CDC6/Xic1-dependent, and how they cooperate with CDK1 activating mechanisms. As a result we propose a comprehensive model integrating CDC6/Xic1-dependent inhibition into the CDK1-activation cascade. The physiological dynamics of CDK1 activation appear to be tuned by the system of multiple inhibitors and activators and their integrated modulation ensures concomitantly both the robustness and certain flexibility of the control of this process. Identification of multiplied activators and inhibitors of CDK1 activation upon M-phase entry allows a better understanding of why cells divide at a specific time, and how the pathways involved in the timely regulation of the cell division are all integrated to precisely tune the control of mitotic events.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1059.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: corneal enendothelial dystrophy; Slc4a11; barrier function; lactate transporters; Src kinase; oxidative stress; Visomitin
Online: 15 May 2023 (15:50:03 CEST)
Purpose: Inducible Slc4a11 KO leads to corneal edema by disruption of the pump and barrier functions of the corneal endothelium (CE). The loss of Slc4a11 NH3-activated mitochondrial uncoupling leads to mitochondrial membrane potential hyperpolarization-induced oxidative stress. The goal of this study is to investigate the link between oxidative stress and failure of pump and barrier functions and test different approaches to revert the process. Methods: Mice homozygous for Slc4a11 Flox and Estrogen receptor –Cre Recombinase fusion protein alleles at 8 weeks of age were fed Tamoxifen (Tm) enriched chow (0.4 g/Kg) for 2 weeks, and controls were fed normal chow. During the initial 14 days, Slc4a11 expression, corneal thickness (CT), stromal [lactate], Na+-K+ ATPase activity, mitochondrial superoxide levels, expression of lactate transporters, and activity of key kinases were assessed. In addition, barrier function was assessed by fluorescein permeability, ZO-1 tight junction integrity, and cortical cytoskeleton F-actin morphology. Results: Tm induced a rapid decay in Slc4a11 expression that was 84% complete at 7 days and 96% at 14 days of treatment. Superoxide levels increased significantly by day 7; CT and fluorescein permeability by day 14. Tight junction ZO-1 distribution and cortical cytoskeleton were disrupted at day 14 concomitant with decreased expression of Cldn1 yet an increase in tyrosine phosphorylation. Stromal lactate increased by 60%, Na+-K+ATPase activity decreased by 40%, and expression of lactate transporters MCT2 and MCT4 significantly decreased, but MCT1 was unchanged at 14 days. Src kinase was activated but not Rock, PKCα, JNK, or P38Mapk. Mitochondrial antioxidant Visomitin (SkQ1, mitochondrial targeted antioxidant) or Src kinase inhibitor eCF506 significantly slowed the increase in CT, with concomitant decreased stromal lactate retention, improved barrier function, reduced Src activation and Cldn1 phosphorylation, and rescued MCT2 and MCT4 expression. Conclusions: Slc4a11 KO-induced CE oxidative stress triggered increased Src kinase activity that results in perturbation of pump components and barrier function of the CE.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0938.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: micro-mini pig; large animal experiment; GFP-transgenic pig; multipotent stem cells; skeletal muscle; nerve-muscle regeneration.
Online: 12 May 2023 (11:18:40 CEST)
Large animal experiments are important for preclinical studies of regenerative stem cell transplantation therapy. Therefore, we investigated the differentiation capacity of pig skeletal muscle-derived stem cells (Sk-MSCs) as an intermediate model between mice and humans for nerve muscle regenerative therapy. Enzymatically extracted cells were obtained from green-fluorescence transgenic micro-mini pigs (GFP-Tg MMP) and sorted as CD34+/45- (Sk-34) and CD34-/45-/29+ (Sk-DN) fractions. The ability to differentiate into skeletal muscle, peripheral nerve, and vascular cell lineages was examined by in vitro cell culture and in vivo cell transplantation into the damaged tibialis anterior muscle and sciatic nerves of nude mice and rats. Protein and mRNA levels were analyzed using RT-PCR, immunohistochemistry, and immunoelectron microscopy. The myogenic potential, which was tested by Pax7 and MyoD expression and the formation of muscle fibers, was higher in Sk-DN cells than in Sk-34 cells but remained weak in the latter. In contrast, the capacity to differentiate into peripheral nerve and vascular cell lineages was totally stronger in Sk-34 cells. In particular, Sk-DN cells did not engraft to the damaged nerve, whereas Sk-34 cells showed active engraftment and differentiation into perineurial/endoneurial cells, endothelial cells, and vascular smooth muscle cells, similar to the human case, as previously reported. Therefore, we concluded that Sk-34 and Sk-DN cells in pigs were closer to those in humans than to those in mice.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0570.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: human sperm; vacuoles; ultrastructure; morphology; immunocytochemistry; TEM
Online: 9 May 2023 (05:10:21 CEST)
Nuclear vacuoles are specific structures present on the head of the human sperm of fertile and non-fertile men. Human sperm head vacuoles have been previously studied using motile sperm organelle morphology examination (MSOME) and their origin related to ab-normal morphology, abnormal chromatin condensation and DNA fragmentation. How-ever, other evidences argued that human sperm vacuoles are physiological structures and consequently, to date, the nature and origin of the nuclear vacuoles remains to be elucidat-ed. Here, we aim to define the incidence, position, morphology, and molecular content of the human sperm vacuoles using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and immuno-cytochemistry techniques. Results showed that ~50% of the analyzed human sperm cells (n = 1908; 17 normozoospermic human donors) contained vacuoles mainly located (80%) in the anterior head region. A significant positive correlation was also found between the sperm vacuole and nucleus areas. Furthermore, it was confirmed that nuclear vacuoles were invaginations of nuclear envelope containing cytoskeletal proteins and a cytoplas-mic enzyme, discarding a nuclear or acrosomal origin. According to our findings, these human sperm head vacuoles are cellular structures which take the origin from nuclear invaginations and contain perinuclear theca (PT) components, allowing to define a new term of ‘nuclear invaginations’ rather than ‘nuclear vacuoles.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0538.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Aging; Betaine; dBHMT; Drosophila; dSAMTOR; dTORC1; Kinase; Methionine; SAM
Online: 8 May 2023 (12:06:37 CEST)
mTORC1 regulates mammalian cell metabolism and growth, in response to diverse environmental stimuli. Nutrient signals control the localization of mTORC1 onto lysosome-surface scaffolds that are critically implicated in its amino acid-dependent activation. Arginine, Leucine and S-Adenosyl-Methionine (SAM) can serve as major mTORC1-signaling activators, with SAM binding to SAMTOR (SAM + TOR), a fundamental SAM sensor, abolishing protein’s (SAMTOR’s) inhibitory action(s) against mTORC1, thereby releasing its (mTORC1) kinase activity. Given the lack of knowledge regarding the role of SAMTOR in invertebrates, we have, in silico, identified the Drosophila SAMTOR homologue (dSAMTOR) and have, herein, genetically targeted it, through utilization of the GAL4/UAS transgenic tool. Survival profiles and negative geotaxis patterns were examined both in control and dSAMTOR-downregulated adult flies, during aging. One of the two gene-targeted schemes resulted in lethal phenotypes, whereas the other one caused rather moderate pathologies in most tissues. Screening of head-specific kinase activities, via PamGene technology application, unveiled the significant upregulation of several kinases, including the dTORC1 characteristic substrate, dp70S6K, in dSAMTOR-downregulated flies, thus strongly supporting the inhibitory dSAMTOR function(s) upon dTORC1/dp70S6K signaling axis in Drosophila-brain settings. Importantly, genetic targeting of the Drosophila BHMT -bioinformatics- counterpart (dBHMT), an enzyme that catabolizes Betaine to produce Methionine (the SAM precursor), led to severe compromises in fly longevities, with glia-, motor neuron- and muscle-specific dBHMT downregulations exhibiting the strongest effects. Abnormalities in wing-vein architectures were also detected in dBHMT-targeted flies, thereby justifying their notably reduced negative geotaxis capacities, herein, observed, mainly in the brain-(mid)gut axis. In vivo adult-fly exposure to clinically relevant doses of Methionine revealed the mechanistic synergism of decreased dSAMTOR and increased Methionine levels in pathogenic longevity, thus rendering (d)SAMTOR an important component in Methionine-associated disorders, including Homocystinuria(s).
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0457.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Dental stem cells; Mesenchymal Stem Cells; Dental Pulp Stem Cells; Dental Bud Stem Cells; bone regeneration; osteogenic differentiation
Online: 8 May 2023 (05:33:58 CEST)
Teeth include mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which are multipotent cells that promote tooth growth and repair. Dental tissues, specifically the dental pulp and the dental bud, constitute a relevant source of multipotent stem cells, known as dental-derived stem cells (d-DSCs): dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) and dental bud stem cells (DBSCs). Cell treatment with bone-associated factors and stimulation with small molecule compounds are, among the available methods, the ones who show excellent advantages promoting stem cell differentiation and osteogenesis. Recently, attention has been paid to studies on natural and non-natural compounds. Many fruits, vegetables and some drugs contain molecules that can enhance MSC osteogenic differentiation and therefore bone formation. The purpose of this review is to examine research work over the past 7 years that has investigated two different types of MSCs from dental tissues that are attractive targets for bone tissue engineering: DPSCs and DBSCs. We focused on articles hypothesizing the identification and study of compounds that induce proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of the two d-DSC populations, representing an interesting issue for regenerative medicine. The reconstruction of bone defects in fact is still a challenge for personalized medicine.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0154.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: cell-cell interaction; emerging yeasts; drug-resistance; virulence; physicochemical conditions
Online: 3 May 2023 (12:56:06 CEST)
The multidrug-resistant fungal pathogens belonging to the Candida haemulonii complex and the phylogenetically related species Candida auris are well-known for causing infections that are difficult to treat due to their multidrug-resistance profile. C. auris is even more worrisome due to its ability to cause outbreaks in healthcare settings. These emerging yeasts produce a wide range of virulence factors that facilitate the development of the infectious process. In recent years, the aggregative phenotype has been receiving attention, as it is mainly associated with defects in cellular division and its possible involvement in helping the fungus to escape from host immune responses. In this study, we initially investigated the aggregation ability of 18 clinical isolates belonging to the C. haemulonii species complex and C. auris. Subsequently, we evaluated the effects of physicochemical factors on the fungal aggregation competence. The results demonstrated that cell aggregation was a typically time-dependent event, in which almost all studied fungal isolates exhibited high aggregation after 2 h of incubation at 37°C. The aggregation was not impacted by pH, temperature, -mercaptoethanol (a protein-denaturing agent) and EDTA (a chelator agent). Conversely, proteinase K, trypsin and sodium dodecyl sulfate significantly diminished the aggregation. Collectively, our results demonstrated that the aggregation ability in these opportunistic yeast pathogens is time-dependent, and surface proteins and hydrophobic interactions seem to mediate cell aggregation, since the presence of proteases and anionic detergent affected the aggregation ability. However, further studies are necessary to better elucidate this phenomenon.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0034.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: organ-on-a-chip; gut-on-a-chip; intestine; in vitro; ex vivo; ADME; oral bioavailability; drug development; microbiome; IBD
Online: 2 May 2023 (01:15:08 CEST)
The gut plays a key role in drug absorption and metabolism of orally ingested drugs. Additionally, characterization of intestinal disease processes are increasingly gaining more attention as gut health is an important contributor to our overall health. The most recent innovation to study intestinal processes in vitro is the development of gut-on-a-chip (GOC) systems. Compared to conventional in vitro models they offer more translational value, and many different GOC models have been presented over the past years. Here, we reflect on the almost unlimited choices in designing and selecting a GOC for preclinical drug (or food) development research. Four components that largely influence the GOC design are highlighted, namely 1) the biological research questions, 2) chip fabrication and materials, 3) tissue engineering, and 4) the environmental and biochemical cues to add or measure in the GOC. Examples are presented of GOC studies in the two major areas of preclinical intestinal research: 1) intestinal absorption and metabolism to study the oral bioavailability of compounds, and 2) treatment-orientated research for intestinal diseases. The last section of this review presents an outlook on the limitations to overcome in order to accelerate preclinical GOC research.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.1227.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Drosophila embryogenesis; SLC; cellularization; Blot; ELMO/DOCK complex
Online: 29 April 2023 (08:02:54 CEST)
Solute carrier (SLC) proteins transport a wide range of substrates across biological membranes and more than 400 proteins are considered as SLCs based on its sequence. Despite it has important potential applications in drug development, the SLC superfamily is still understudied. Drosophila blot, an orphan SLC protein, regulates F-actin organization in the syncytial blastoderm and the Malpighian tubules. However, the molecular mechanism was unknown. In this study, we found Blot was localized at the furrow canal, the front of the invaginating membrane during cellularization process. Blot is required for maintaining proper morphology of furrow canal and cellularization process. By affinity purification and mass spectrometry we identified RhoGEF ELMO/DOCK complex was required for Blot-mediated F-actin organization and cellularization. Further analysis revealed that ELMO localization depends on Blot. Taken together, we propose Blot plays a role in F-actin organization as an upstream factor of ELMO by recruiting ELMO to the target membrane compartments.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.1044.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Meiosis prophase I; Synaptonemal complex (SC) disassembly; Metaphase I transition
Online: 27 April 2023 (04:55:50 CEST)
Meiosis is a specialized cell division that produces haploid gametes from diploid germ cells, and the phosphorylation activity of cyclin-CDK complexes and Polo-like kinase is required for synaptonemal complex (SC) disassembly and metaphase I exit. Here, we identified a novel protein MSCDK (meiotic substrate of cyclin dependent kinase) that functions as a substrate of CDK1 in initiating SC disassembly and metaphase I transition during meiosis prophase I in mice. Deletion of MSCDK caused germ cell death and infertility in males but not females. Mechanistically, we show that MSCDK is sparsely localized as discrete foci along synaptic homologous chromosomes from the early zygotene to the early diplotene, and we confirm that MSCDK can be phosphorylated by CDK1 and dephosphorylated by the cell cycle exit regulator phosphatase PP1α. We also provide evidence that MSCDK is essential for SC disassembly based on its dephosphorylation-related function, which apparently promotes HSPA2 nuclear recruitment.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0989.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Whole genome duplication; tetraploidy; polyploidy; aneuploidy; Caenorhabditis; WGD model (List three to ten pertinent keywords specific to the article yet reasonably common within the subject discipline.)
Online: 26 April 2023 (12:43:20 CEST)
Whole genome duplication (WGD) or polyploidization can occur at the cellular, tissue, and organismal levels. At the cellular level, tetraploidization has been proposed as a driver of aneuploidy and genome instability, and correlates strongly with cancer progression, metastasis, and development of drugs resistance[1–6]. WGD is also a key developmental strategy for regulating cell size, metabolism, and cellular function[1,7–10]. In specific tissues, WGD is involved in normal development (e.g. organogenesis), tissue homeostasis, wound healing, and regeneration[10–17]. At the organismal level, WGD propels evolutionary processes such as adaptation, speciation, and crop domestication. An essential strategy to further our understanding of the mechanisms promoting WGD and its effects is to compare isogenic strains that differ only in their ploidy. Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is emerging as an animal model for these comparisons, in part because relatively stable and fertile tetraploid strains can be produced rapidly from nearly any diploid strain. Here we review the use of Caenorhabditis polyploids as tools to understand important developmental processes (e.g. sex determination, dosage compensation, and allometric relationships)[21–27] and cellular processes (e.g. cell cycle regulation, chromosome dynamics during meiosis)[28–32]. We also discuss how the unique characteristics of the C. elegans WGD model will enable significant advances in our understanding of mechanisms of polyploidization and its role in development and disease.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0982.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: MT4-MMP; MMP-17; development; vasculature; tumor; cancer cell; malignancy; therapy; bi-omarker
Online: 26 April 2023 (11:19:22 CEST)
MT4-MMP (or MMP-17) belongs to the Membrane-Type Matrix Metalloproteinases (MT-MMPs), a distinct subset of the MMP family that is anchored to the cell surface by a glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) motif. Its expression in a variety of cancers is well documented. However, the molecular mechanisms by which MT4-MMP contributes to tumor development need further investigation. In this review, we aim to summarize the contribution of MT4-MMP in tumorigenesis, focusing on the molecular mechanisms triggered by the enzyme in tumor cell migration, invasiveness, and proliferation, in the tumor vasculature and microenvironment, as well as during metastasis. In particular, we highlight the putative substrates processed and signaling cascades activated by MT4-MMP that may underlie these malignancy processes and compare this with what is known about its role during embryonic development. Finally, MT4-MMP is a relevant biomarker of malignancy that can be used for monitoring cancer diseases progression in patients as well as a potential target for future therapeutic drug development.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0969.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Mitochondrion; respiratory chain; mitochondrial translation; chaperone
Online: 26 April 2023 (07:40:36 CEST)
Insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE) is a highly conserved metalloprotease mainly localized in the cytosol. Although IDE can degrade insulin and some other low molecular weight substrates efficiently, its ubiquitous expression suggests additional functions supported by experimental findings, such as a role in stress responses, cellular protein homeostasis. Translation of full-length (Met1) IDE transcripts has reported to result in targeting to mitochondria but the role of IDE in this compartment is unknown. To obtain initial leads on the function of IDE in mitochondria, here we used a proximity biotinylation approach to identify proteins interacting with wild-type and protease-dead IDE targeted to the mitochondrial matrix. We find that mitochondrial IDE interacts strongly with mitochondrial ribosomes as well as with proteins of the respiratory chain. The mitochondrial interactomes of wild type and mutant IDE are highly similar and do not reveal any proteolytic IDE substrates. We speculate that IDE could adopt similar functions in mitochondria as in the cytosol, acting as a chaperone and contributing to protein homeostasis and stress responses.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0790.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: chromatin organization; nuclear lamina; epigenetics; neuronal differentiation
Online: 23 April 2023 (08:09:57 CEST)
During embryonic development stem cells undergo the differentiation process so that they can specialise for different functions within the organism. Complex programs of gene transcription are crucial for this process to happen. Epigenetic modifications and the architecture of chromatin in the nucleus, by the formation of specific regions of active as well as inactive chromatin, allow the coordinated regulation of the genes for each cell fate. In this mini review, we discuss the current knowledge regarding the regulation of three-dimensional chromatin structure during neuronal differentiation. We also focus on the role played in neurogenesis by the nuclear lamina that ensures the tethering of the chromatin to the nuclear envelope.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0681.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: cardiomyocytes; induced pluripotent stem cells; cell therapy; calcium imaging; fluorescence microscopy; transmission electron microscopy
Online: 21 April 2023 (08:10:14 CEST)
For the replacement of lost contractile elements in the treatment of coronary heart disease, the most promising approaches to obtain cardiomyocytes by cardiac differentiation of pluripotent cells. The aim of this work is to develop a technology for the formation of a functional layer of cardiomyocytes differentiated from iPSCs, capable of generating rhythmic activity and synchronous contractions. To accelerate cardiomyocyte maturation, the renal subcapsular transplantation model was used in SCID mice. After explantation, the formation of cardiomyocyte contractile apparatus was assessed by fluorescence and electron microscopy, and calcium ion oscillation in the cytoplasm was assessed by visualization of the fluorescent calcium binding dye Fluo-8. It was shown that human iPSC-derived cardiomyocyte cell layers transplanted (for up to 6 weeks) under SCID mouse kidney fibrous capsules begin to form an ordered contractile apparatus and retain functional activity and the ability to oscillate calcium ion fluxes after explantation from the body.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0432.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Osteoarthritis; TRAPPC9; Inflammation; Chondrocytes; IL-1β
Online: 17 April 2023 (09:38:19 CEST)
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a debilitating degenerative joint disease that results in chronic pain and inflammation due to progressive mechanical and proteolytic cartilage degradation. Articular chondrocytes, the main cell type present in cartilage, are responsible for the deposition and maintenance of the cartilage extracellular matrix (ECM). However, following damage and inflammation, chondrocytes undergo hypertrophy, apoptosis, and contribute to inflammation and ECM degradation. NF-κB signaling is known to be dysregulated in OA. TRAPPC9, a vesicle trafficking protein, is known to directly activate NF-κB signaling in neuronal and bone cells, however, the biological significance of this protein in chondrocytes has yet to be elucidated. Here, we demonstrate that TRAPPC9 enhances pro-inflammatory gene and protein expression in murine primary articular chondrocytes. Furthermore, we show that TRAPPC9 elicits these responses via phosphorylation of P-100 that activates non-canonical NF-κB signaling. Taken together, these findings suggest TRAPPC9 may be a potential therapeutic target to decrease inflammation and matrix degradation during OA pathology.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0384.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: pulmonary organoids; induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs); anterior foregut endoderm; mesoderm; alveoli epithelial cells; SARS-Cov2; iPSC disease modelling
Online: 17 April 2023 (03:33:39 CEST)
Differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells to a range of useful, mature target cell types is ubiquitous in monolayer culture. To further improve the phenotype of the cells produced, 3D organoid culture is becoming increasingly prevalent. Mature organoids typically require the involvement of cells from multiple germ layers. The aim of this study was to produce pulmonary organoids from defined endodermal and mesodermal progenitors. Endodermal and mesodermal progenitors were differentiated from iPSCs then combined in 3D Matrigel hydrogels and differentiated for a further 14 days to produce pulmonary organoids. The organoids expressed a range of pulmonary cell markers such as SPA, SPB, SPC, AQP5 and T1α. Furthermore, organoids expressed ACE2 capable of binding SARS-Cov2 spike protein demonstrating the physiological relevance of the organoids produced. This study demonstrates the rapid production of pulmonary organoids using a multi-germ layer approach that could be used for studying novel respiratory disease interactions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0345.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: O-GlcNAc; primary cilia; neuronal development; cortical neurons; human induced-pluripotent stem cells
Online: 14 April 2023 (04:03:04 CEST)
The primary cilium plays critical roles in homeostasis and development of neurons. Recent studies demonstrate that cilia length is regulated by the metabolic state of cells, as dictated by processes such as glucose flux and O-GlcNAcylation (OGN). The study of cilia length regulation during neuron development, however, has been an area left largely unexplored. This project aims to elucidate the roles of O-GlcNAc in neuronal development through its regulation of the primary cilium. Here, we present findings suggesting that OGN levels negatively regulate cilia length on differentiated cortical neurons derived from human-induced pluripotent stem cells. In neurons, cilia length increased significantly during neurons maturation (after day 35), while OGN levels began to drop. Long-term perturbation of OGN via drugs, which inhibit or promote its cycling, during neuron development also have varying effects. Diminishing OGN levels increases cilia length until day 25, when neural stem cells expand and undergo early neurogenesis, before causing cell cycle exit defects and multinucleation. Elevating OGN levels induces greater primary cilia assembly but ultimately results in the development of premature neurons, which have higher insulin sensitivity. These results indicate that OGN levels and primary cilia length are jointly critical in proper neuron development and function. Understanding the interplays between these two nutrient sensors, O-GlcNAc and the primary cilium, during neuron development is important in paving connections between dysfunctional nutrient-sensing and early neurological disorders.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0241.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: buccopharyngeal membrane; choanal atresia; mouth; Xenopus laevis
Online: 12 April 2023 (04:47:09 CEST)
The mouth is a central feature of our face, without it we could not eat, breathe, nor communicate. A critical and early event in mouth formation is the creation of a “hole” which connects the digestive system and the external environment. This hole, which has also been called the primary or embryonic mouth in vertebrates, is initially covered by a 1-2 cell layer thick structure called the buccopharyngeal membrane. When the buccopharyngeal membrane does not rupture it impairs early mouth functions and may also lead to further craniofacial malformations. Using a chemical screen in an animal model (Xenopus laevis) and genetic data from humans, we determined that Janus kinase 2 (Jak2) could have a role in buccopharyngeal membrane rupture. We have determined that decreased Jak2 function, using antisense morpholinos or a pharmacological antagonist, caused a persistent buccopharyngeal membrane as well as the loss of jaw muscles. Surprisingly, we observed that the jaw muscle compartments were connected to the oral epithelium that is continuous with the buccopharyngeal membrane. Severing such connections resulted in buccopharyngeal membrane buckling and persistence. We also noted puncta accumulation of F-actin, an indicator of tension, in the buccopharyngeal membrane during perforation. Together the data has led us to a hypothesis where muscles are required to exert tension across the buccopharyngeal membrane, and such tension is necessary for its perforation.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202301.0150.v2
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: oral; mucosa; mucins; tight junctions; wound-healing; E-liquids; cytotoxicity; viability; confluency.
Online: 3 April 2023 (03:33:37 CEST)
Background: Expansion of OKF6/TERT-2 oral epithelial cells in vitro is important for studying the molecular biology of disease and pathology affecting the oral cavity. Keratinocyte Serum-Free Medium (KSFM) is the medium of choice for this cell line. This study compares three media for OKF6/TERT-2 cultures: KSFM, Dulbecco’s Modified Eagle Medium/Nutrient Mixture of Hams F-12 (DMEM/F12) and a composite medium comprised of DMEM/F-12 and KSFM (1:1 v/v), referred as DFK. The toxicological effects of electronic cigarette liquids (E-liquids) on OKF6/TERT-2 cells cultured in these media were also compared. Methods: Cells were cultured in KSFM, DMEM/F12 or DFK and cellular morphology, growth, wound healing and gene expression of mucins and tight junctions were evaluated. Additionally, cytotoxicity was determined after E-liquid exposures. Results: Switching from KSFM to DMEM/F12 or DFK 24-hours post-seeding leads to typical cellular morphologies, and these cultures reach confluency faster than those in KSFM. Wound-healing recovery occurred fastest in DFK. Except for claudin-1, there is no difference in expression of the other genes tested. Additionally, E-liquid cytotoxicity appears to be amplified in DFK cultures. Conclusions: DMEM/F12 and DFK are alternative media for OKF6/TERT-2 cell culture to study molecular biology of disease and pathology, provided cells are initially seeded in KSFM.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.0003.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: TIP60; DOMINO; ATPase; Drosophila male meiosis; chromatin remodeling; cell division; epigenetics
Online: 3 April 2023 (02:33:04 CEST)
ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling complexes are involved in nucleosomes sliding, eviction and/or histone variants incorporation into chromatin to facilitate several cellular and biological processes, including DNA transcription, replication and repair. The DOM/TIP60 chromatin remodeling complex of Drosophila melanogaster contains 18 subunits, including the DOMINO (DOM), an ATPase that catalyzes the ex-change of the canonical H2A with its variant (H2A.V); and TIP60, a lysine-acetyltransferase that acetylates H4, H2A and H2A.V histones. In the last decade, different experimental evidence showed that ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling factors, in addition to their role in chromatin organization, have a functional relevance in cell division. In particular, emerging studies suggested direct roles of ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling complex subunits in controlling mitosis and cytokinesis in both humans and D. melanogaster. However, little is known about their possible involvement during meiosis Meiotic chromosomes non-disjunction led to aneuploid offspring, which are often inviable/poorly viable or sterile due to gene dosage imbalance. Therefore, studying the role of DOM/TIP60 complex in D. melanogaster meiosis can provide new insights on our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying cell division control in gametogenesis.
HYPOTHESIS | doi:10.20944/preprints202303.0449.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: unstable state cells, growth limit, stem cells, traits
Online: 27 March 2023 (07:50:59 CEST)
Multicellular organisms organize themselves according to two principles; first, the equilibrium between the driving force of unstable state cells and apoptosis or senescence; and second, the mutual equilibrium between the functional requirements of different types of cells. For the first principle, we deduce that stem cells at different levels have their own growth limits, which are determined by two factors: the ability of the stem cells to enter an unstable state (specifically, the ability of cells to divide and differentiate); and the rate of cellular senescence, loss of function, and finally, apoptosis. The superposition of stem cell limits at different levels over each other can amplify small differences at the genetic level. Moreover, the growth limits of different organs are different, which lead to different individuals having completely different appearances. The second principle is that the sum of the specific output functions of an organ must be equal to the overall demand for the function to be provided by the organ. If negative entropy input can meet this equilibrium, defects in certain genes will cause these defective individuals to become larger or develop other morphology.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0203.v2
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: neural induction; embryogenesis; tumorigenesis; neural stemness; tumorigenicity; pluripotency; epithelial-mesenchymal transition; tumor microenvironment
Online: 9 March 2023 (06:57:01 CET)
Characterization of cancer cells and neural stem cells indicates that tumorigenicity and pluripotency are coupled cell properties determined by neural stemness, and tumorigenesis represents a process of progressive loss of original cell identity and gain of neural stemness. This reminds of a most fundamental process required for the development of the nervous system and body axis during embryogenesis, i.e., embryonic neural induction. Neural induction is that, in response to extracellular signals that are secreted by the Spemann-Mangold organizer in amphibians or the node in mammals and inhibit epidermal fate in ectoderm, the ectodermal cells lose their epidermal fate and assume the neural default fate and consequently, turn into neuroectodermal cells. They further differentiate into the nervous system and also some non-neural cells via interaction with adjacent tissues. Failure in neural induction leads to failure of embryogenesis, and ectopic neural induction due to ectopic organizer or node activity or activation of embryonic neural genes causes a formation of secondary body axis or a conjoined twin. During tumorigenesis, cells progressively lose their original cell identity and gain of neural stemness, and consequently, gain of tumorigenicity and pluripotency, due to various intra-/extracellular insults in cells of a postnatal animal. Tumorigenic cells can be induced to differentiation into normal cells and integrate into normal embryonic development within an embryo. However, they form tumors and cannot integrate into animal tissues/organs in a postnatal animal because of lack of embryonic inducing signals. Combination of studies of developmental and cancer biology indicates that neural induction drives embryogenesis in gastrulating embryos but a similar process drives tumorigenesis in a postnatal animal. Tumorigenicity is the manifestation of aberrant occurrence of pluripotent state in a postnatal animal. Pluripotency and tumorigenicity are both but different manifestations of neural stemness in pre- and postnatal stage, respectively, of animal life. The unique property of neural stemness is derived from the evolutionary advantage of neural genes and the neural-biased state of the last common unicellular ancestors of metazoan. Based on these findings, I discuss about some confusion in cancer research, propose to distinguish the causality and associations and discriminate causal and supporting factors involved in tumorigenesis, and suggest revisiting the focus of cancer research.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202303.0131.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Biochemical traits, Colchicine; Glycine max; Morphology; Oryzalin; Polyploidy; Salinity stress; Soybean
Online: 7 March 2023 (09:29:33 CET)
Polyploidy induction is recognized as one of the major evolutionary processes presenting remark-able morphological, physiological, and genetic variations in plants. Soybean (Glycine max L.), also known as soja bean or soya bean, is an annual leguminous crop of the pea family (Fabaceae) that shares a paleopolypoidy history, dating back to approximately 56.5 million years ago with other leguminous crops such as cowpea and other Glycine specific polyploids. This crop has been documented as one of the polyploid complex species among legumes whose gene evolution and result-ant adaptive growth characteristics, following induced polyploidization has not been fully explored. Furthermore, there are no successfully established in vivo or in vitro based polyploidy in-duction protocols that have been reported so far, particularly, with the intention to develop mutant plants showing strong resistance to abiotic salinity stress. This review, therefore, describes the role of synthetic polyploid plant production in soybean for the mitigation against high soil salt stress levels, and how this evolving approach could be used to further enhance nutritional, pharmaceutical and economic industrial value of soybeans, including addressing challenges involved during the polyploidization process.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0448.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: dorsal root ganglia; fatty acids; gliopathy; nerve injury; spinal cord
Online: 27 February 2023 (06:35:32 CET)
Preclinical studies have identified glial cells as pivotal players in the genesis and maintenance of neuropathic pain after nerve injury associated with diabetes, chemotherapy, major surgeries, and virus infections. Satellite glial cells (SGCs) in the dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia of the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and astrocytes in the central nervous system (CNS) express similar molecular markers and are protective under physiological conditions. They also serve similar functions in the genesis and maintenance of neuropathic pain, downregulating some of their homeostatic functions and driving pro-inflammatory neuro-glial interactions in the PNS and CNS, i.e. “gliopathy”. However, the role of SGCs in neuropathic pain is not simply as “peripheral astrocytes”. We delineate how these peripheral and central glia participate in neuropathic pain by producing different mediators, engaging different parts of neurons, and becoming active at different stages following nerve injury. Finally, we highlight the recent findings that SGCs are enriched with proteins related to fatty acid metabolism and signaling such as Apo-E, FABP7, and LPAR1. Targeting SGCs and astrocytes may lead to novel therapeutics for the treatment of neuropathic pain.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0387.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: BCL-2 family protein; BCL-2 Domains; Apoptosis; Cancer; Biomarkers; Therapeutic Agents
Online: 22 February 2023 (14:56:09 CET)
Apoptosis, also known as the programmed death of cells, is responsible for maintaining the homeostasis of tissues and this function is carried out by caspases. The process of apoptosis is carried out via two distinct pathways: the extrinsic pathway, which is governed by death receptors, and the intrinsic pathway, also known as the mitochondrial pathway. The BCL-2 protein family encoded by the BCL-2 gene, located at the 18q21.33 chromosomal location, is in charge of regulating the intrinsic pathway, which is responsible for inducing cell death via the permeabilization of the mitochondrial membrane and the release of apoptosis - inducing components. The BCL-2 homology (BH1, BH2, BH3, BH4) domains of this family proteins are crucial for their functioning and their common BH domains allow interactions between members of the same family and can also serve as indications of pro- or anti-apoptotic activity. A direct correlation may be shown between the overexpression of BCL-2 and the postponement of cell death. It has been determined that a change in the expression of BCL-2 is the root cause of a variety of malignancies, including lung, breast, melanoma, and chronic lymphocytic leukemia, Multiple Sclerosis, Diabetes. In this review, we discuss the therapeutic potential of regulating BCL-2 family connections and their relevance to health and disease.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0369.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: cell biology; protein sorting; nuclear translocation; protein domain; WAC
Online: 22 February 2023 (02:37:35 CET)
Dysfunction of the WW domain-containing adaptor with coiled-coil, WAC, gene underlies a rare autosomal dominant disorder, DeSanto-Shinawi syndrome (DESSH). DESSH is associated with facial dysmorphia, hypotonia, and cognitive alterations, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and autism. How the WAC protein localizes and functions in neural cells is critical to understanding its role during development. To understand the genotype-phenotype role of WAC, we developed a knowledgebase of WAC expression, evolution, human genomics, and structural/motif analysis combined with human protein domain deletions to assess how conserved domains guide cellular distribution. Then assessed in a cell type implicated in DESSH, cortical GABAergic neurons. WAC contains conserved charged amino acids, phosphorylation signals, and enriched nuclear motifs, suggesting a role in cellular signaling and gene transcription. Human DESSH variants are found within these regions. We also discovered and tested a nuclear localaization domain that impacts the cellular distribution of the protein. These data provide new insights into the potential roles of this critical developmental gene, establishing a platform to assess further translational studies, including the screening of missense genetic variants in WAC. Moreover, these studies are essential for understanding the role of human WAC variants in more diverse neurological phenotypes, including autism spectrum disorder.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0321.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: human induced pluripotent stem cells; inner ear disorders; disease modeling; sensorineural hearing loss; Meniere disease; biomedical applications
Online: 20 February 2023 (06:17:44 CET)
Genetic sensorineural hearing loss and Meniere disease have been associated with rare variations in the coding and non-coding region of the human genome. Most of these variants are classified as likely pathogenic or variants of unknown significance and require functional validation in cellular or animal models. Given the difficulties to obtain human samples and the raising concerns about animal experimentation, human induced pluripotent stem cells emerge as cellular models to investigate the interaction of genetic and environmental factors in the pathogenesis of inner ear disorders. The generation of human sensory epithelia and neuron-like cells carrying the variants of interest may facilitate a better understanding of their role during differentiation. These cellular models will allow us to explore new strategies for restoring hearing and vestibular sensory epithelia as well as neurons. This review summarizes the use of human induced pluripotent stem cells in sensorineural hearing loss and Meniere disease and proposes some strategies for its application in clinical practice.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0284.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: articular cartilage; Runx1/Cbfβ complex; Osteoarthritis; TGF-β signaling; proteasomal degradation
Online: 16 February 2023 (09:40:30 CET)
TGF-ꞵ signaling is a vital regulator for maintaining articular cartilage homeostasis. Runx transcription factors, downstream targets of TGF-ꞵ signaling, have been studied in the context of osteoarthritis (OA). Although Runx partner core binding factor β (Cbfβ) is known to play a pivotal role in chondrocyte and osteoblast differentiation, the role of Cbfβ in maintaining articular cartilage remains obscure. This study investigated Cbfβ as a novel anabolic modulator of TGF-ꞵsignaling and determined its role in articular cartilage homeostasis. Cbfβ significantly decreased in aged mouse articular cartilage and human OA cartilage. Articular chondrocyte-specific Cbfb-deficient mice (Cbfb△ac/△ac) exhibited early cartilage degeneration at 20 weeks old and developed OA at 12 months old. Cbfb△ac/△ac mice showed enhanced OA progression under the surgical-induced mice OA model. Mechanistically, forced expression of Cbfβ rescued Col2α1 and Runx1 expression in Cbfβ-deficient chondrocytes. TGF-ꞵ1-mediated Col2α1 expression failed despite the pSmad3 activation under TGF-ꞵ1 treatment in Cbfβ-deficient chondrocytes. Cbfβ protected Runx1 from proteasomal degradation through Cbfβ/Runx1 complex formation. These results indicate that Cbfβ is a novel anabolic regulator for cartilage homeostasis, suggesting that Cbfβ could protect OA development by maintaining the integrity of the TGF-ꞵ1 signaling pathway in articular cartilage.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0238.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: nanoparticles; berberine; metabolism; mitochondria; apoptosis
Online: 14 February 2023 (07:52:01 CET)
Berberine (BBR) is an isoquinoline that inhibits the proliferation of transformed cells in vitro, but due to its poor solubility and bioavailability, it has only moderate therapeutic potential in vivo. Increasing evidence indicates that BBR specifically targets several metabolic, signaling and gene transcription events in transformed cells, altering their progression through the cell cycle and decreasing their metabolic rate and proliferation. In order to further develop BBR as a therapeutic, its mode of cellular internalization and localization within the cell needs to be further examined. BBR’s molecular targets and interactions with kinases, transcription factors and some enzymes are discussed in an attempt to better understand BBR’s role in these important pathways and how they may lead to changes in metabolism. Lastly, this review examines some of the benefits and challenges of using BBR as an inhibitor in cancer cell proliferation in breast cancer and glioblastoma, as two examples. BBR is a potent drug with multiple targets and it is this multiplicity of function that makes BBR such a promising drug for targeting cell metabolism and proliferation.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0230.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: cardiac arrhythmia; mechano-electric feedback; Piezo1 channel
Online: 14 February 2023 (03:30:10 CET)
The rhythmical nature of the cardiovascular system constantly generates dynamic mechanical forces. At the center of this system is the heart which must detect these changes and adjust its performance accordingly. Mechano-electric feedback provides a rapid mechanism for detecting even subtle changes in the mechanical environment and transducing these signals into electrical responses which can adjust a variety of cardiac parameters such as heart rate and contractility. However, pathological conditions can disrupt this intricate mechanosensory system and manifest as potentially life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias. Mechanosensitive ion channels are thought to be the main proponents of mechano-electric feedback as they provide a rapid response to mechanical stimulation and can directly affect cardiac electrical activity. Here we demonstrate that the mechanosensitive ion channel Piezo1 is expressed in zebrafish cardiomyocytes. Furthermore, chemically prolonging Piezo1 activation in zebrafish results in cardiac arrhythmias indicating that this ion channel plays an important role in mechano-electric feedback. This also raises the possibility that Piezo1 gain of function mutations could be linked to heritable cardiac arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation in humans.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0161.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: translocator protein 18 kDa; mitochondria; inflammation; CRISPR/Cas9; respirometry
Online: 9 February 2023 (09:25:55 CET)
Microglia are the resident immune cells of the central nervous system. Upon stimulus presentation microglia polarize from a resting to an activated state. Microglial translocator protein 18 kDa (TSPO) is considered as a marker of inflammation. Here, we characterized the role of TSPO by investigating the impact of TSPO deficiency on human microglia. We used TSPO knockout (TSPO-/-) variants of the human C20 microglia cell line. We found a significant reduction in the TSPO-associated protein VDAC1 in TSPO-/- compared to control cells. Moreover, we assessed the impact of TSPO deficiency on calcium levels and the mitochondrial membrane potential. Cytosolic and mitochondrial calcium concentrations were increased in TSPO-/- cell lines, whereas the mitochondrial membrane potential tended to be lower. Assessment of the mitochondrial DNA copy number via RT-PCR revealed a decreased amount of mtDNA in the TSPO-/- cells when compared to controls. Moreover, metabolic profiles of C20 cells were strongly dependent on the glycolytic pathway. However, TSPO depletion did not affect the cellular metabolic profile. Measurement of the mRNA expression levels of the pro-inflammatory mediators revealed an attenuated response to proinflammatory stimuli in TSPO-depleted cells, implying a role of the TSPO protein in the process of microglial polarization.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0123.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: WNT; NF-κB, Ion Channels; Anthrax toxin recep- tors; Poliovirus receptors; Porcupine inhibitor ETC-1922159; Sensitivity analysis; Colorectal cancer; Unknown biological hypotheses; Combinatorial search space; Support vector ranking
Online: 7 February 2023 (06:16:12 CET)
Often, in biology, we are faced with the problem of exploring relevant unknown biological hypotheses in the form of myriads of combination of factors that might be affecting the pathway under certain conditions. For example, Brancati et al.1 observe that mutations in poliovirus receptor related protein 4 (PVRL4), encoding cell adhesion molecule nectin-4, causes Ectodermal dysplasia-syndactyly syndrome. Interaction with cad- herins also implies an influence of nectin-4 on Wnt signaling, which plays a relevant role in limb development (Brancati et al.1). However, not much work has been done to explore the relation of Wnts and PVR family. In CRC cells treated with ETC-1922159, both were found up regulated. In a recent unpublished work in Open Science Framework, Sinha2, we had the opportunity to rank these unknown biological hypotheses for both up and down regulated genes at 2nd order level after drug administration. The search engine alloted high nu- merical valued rankings to some combinations of PVR-WNT, thus indicating a possibility of high combinatorial synergy also. The in-silico derived influences can be represented graphically as - PVR w.r.t WNT with PVR <- WNT9A; and WNT w.r.t PVR with WNT-7B/9A <- PVR and WNT4 <- PVRL2; In the light of the recent findings of PVR with IFN (interferon) and the known interactions between IFN and Wnts, there might be a possibilty to explore the bridge of PVR, IFN and WNTs. The 3 fold (PVR - IFN; IFN - WNT; WNT - PVR), 2 way cross family analysis might shed light on the possible combinations that might be of import. Here, we present a 2-way cross family analysis of multiple, such in-silico ranked 2nd order synergistic combinations, after ETC-1922159 treatment of CRC cells. Via this 2-way cross family analysis, we are able to discover through majority voting, the combinations that might of interest to biologists and also derive plausible influences of components of combinations among themselves. Note that these form biological hypotheses which indicate whether a particular combination and the direction of influence within the combination, exist synergistically in CRC cells. Wet lab tests will indicate the veracity of these combinations and if proven true, will lead to further study of mechanism between the components.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0071.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Calcium-activated potassium channels; SK channels; IK channels; human leukemia cells; cell migration; cancer cell invasion
Online: 3 February 2023 (10:31:24 CET)
Calcium-activated potassium channels (KCa) are the important participants in calcium signaling pathways due to their ability to be activated by increase of the intracellular free calcium concentration. KCa channels are involved in the regulation of various processes in the cells under normal, as well as pathophysiological conditions, including oncotransformation. Previously, with the use of patch-clamp method, we registered the KCa activity in the plasma membrane of human myeloid leukemia K562 cell line. Here, we performed the molecular and functional identification of KCa channels and have uncovered their role in proliferation, migration and invasion of K562 cells. Using a combined approach, we identified the functional activity of SK2, SK3 and IK channels in the plasma membrane of the cells. Selective SK and IK channel inhibitors, apamin and TRAM-34, reduced the proliferative, migratory and invasive capabilities of human myeloid leukemia cells. At the same time, the viability of K562 cells was not affected by KCa channel inhibitors. Our data imply that SK/IK channel inhibitors could be used to slow down the proliferation and spreading of leukemia cells that express functionally active KCa channels in the plasma membrane.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202302.0002.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Cell And Developmental Biology Keywords: Extracellular calpastatin, Ca2+/ calmodulin (CaM)-dependent protein kinase kinase 2, osteocytes, osteoclasts, bone remodeling
Online: 1 February 2023 (01:11:27 CET)
Calcium/calmodulin (CaM)-dependent protein kinase kinase 2 (CaMKK2) regulates bone remodeling through its effects on osteoblasts and osteoclasts. However, its role in osteocytes, the most abundant bone cell type, and the master regulator of bone remodeling, remains unknown. Here we report that the conditional deletion of CaMKK2 from osteocytes using Dentine matrix protein 1 (Dmp1)-8kb-Cre mice led to enhanced bone mass only in female mice owing to a suppression of osteoclasts. Conditioned media isolated from female CaMKK2-deficient osteocytes inhibited osteoclast formation and function in in vitro assays, indicating a role for osteocyte-secreted factors. Proteomics analysis revealed significantly higher levels of extracellular calpastatin, a specific inhibitor of calcium-dependent cysteine proteases calpains, in female CaMKK2 null osteocyte conditioned media, compared to media from female control osteocytes. Further, exogenously added non-cell permeable recombinant calpastatin domain I elicited a marked, dose-dependent inhibition of female wild-type osteoclasts and depletion of calpastatin from female CaMKK2-deficient osteocyte conditioned media reversed the inhibition of matrix resorption by osteoclasts. Our findings reveal a novel role for extracellular calpastatin in regulating female osteoclast function and unravel a novel CaMKK2-mediated paracrine mechanism of osteoclast regulation by female osteocytes.