Project description:Activation of the immune system which occurs in inflammatory disease leads to parallel increases in pterin synthesis and increased production of neuroactive L-tryptophan metabolites. Several model systems were studied to determine whether pterins, which are cofactors for hydroxylation reactions, could be required in the oxidative kynurenine pathway of L-tryptophan degradation. Treatment of mice with interferon-gamma increased L-tryptophan metabolism without any corresponding change in tissue biopterin concentrations. Cytokine-treated human fibroblasts, macrophages and glioblastoma cells all showed increases in kynurenine production, which were completely independent of pterin synthesis. When pterin synthesis de novo was blocked, either by an inhibitor of GTP cyclohydrolase or because of a genetic deficiency of one of the enzymes of the pathway of pterin biosynthesis, cytokine-stimulated increases in tryptophan metabolism were unaffected. Furthermore, increasing intracellular tetrahydrobiopterin concentrations by treating cells with sepia-pterin also had no effect on markers of tryptophan metabolism. Therefore, both normal and cytokine-stimulated L-tryptophan metabolism appears to be completely independent of pterin biosynthesis.
Project description:Senescent cells contribute to age-related pathology and loss of function, and their selective removal improves physiological function and extends longevity. Rapamycin, an inhibitor of mTOR, inhibits cell senescence in vitro and increases longevity in several species. Nrf2 levels have been shown to decrease with aging and silencing Nrf2 gene induces premature senescence. Therefore, we explored whether Nrf2 is involved in the mechanism by which rapamycin delays cell senescence. In wild-type (WT) mouse fibroblasts, rapamycin increased the levels of Nrf2, and this correlates with the activation of autophagy and a reduction in the induction of cell senescence, as measured by SA-?-galactosidase (?-gal) staining, senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP), and p16 and p21 molecular markers. In Nrf2KO fibroblasts, however, rapamycin still decreased ?-gal staining and the SASP, but rapamycin did not activate the autophagy pathway or decrease p16 and p21 levels. These observations were further confirmed in vivo using Nrf2KO mice, where rapamycin treatment led to a decrease in ?-gal staining and pro-inflammatory cytokines in serum and fat tissue; however, p16 levels were not significantly decreased in fat tissue. Consistent with literature demonstrating that the Stat3 pathway is linked to the production of SASP, we found that rapamycin decreased activation of the Stat3 pathway in cells or tissue samples from both WT and Nrf2KO mice. Our data thus suggest that cell senescence is a complex process that involves at least two arms, and rapamycin uses Nrf2 to regulate cell cycle arrest, but not the production of SASP.
Project description:To determine if rapamycin inhibits the growth, function, and metabolism of human laryngotracheal stenosis (LTS)-derived fibroblasts.Controlled in vitro study.Tertiary care hospital in a research university.Fibroblasts isolated from biopsies of 5 patients with laryngotracheal stenosis were cultured. Cell proliferation, histology, gene expression, and cellular metabolism of LTS-derived fibroblasts were assessed in 4 conditions: (1) fibroblast growth medium, (2) fibroblast growth medium with dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), (3) fibroblast growth medium with 10(-10) M (low-dose) rapamycin dissolved in DMSO, and (4) fibroblast growth medium with 10(-9) M (high-dose) rapamycin dissolved in DMSO.The LTS fibroblast count and DNA concentration were reduced after treatment with high-dose rapamycin compared to DMSO (P = .0007) and normal (P = .0007) controls. Collagen I expression decreased after treatment with high-dose rapamycin versus control (P = .0051) and DMSO (P = .0093) controls. Maximal respiration decreased to 68.6 pMoles of oxygen/min/10 mg/protein from 96.9 for DMSO (P = .0002) and 97.0 for normal (P = .0022) controls. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) production decreased to 66.8 pMoles from 88.1 for DMSO (P = .0006) and 83.3 for normal (P = .0003) controls. Basal respiration decreased to 78.6 pMoles from 108 for DMSO (P = .0002) and 101 for normal (P = .0014) controls.Rapamycin demonstrated an anti-fibroblast effect by significantly reducing the proliferation, metabolism, and collagen deposition of human LTS fibroblast in vitro. Rapamycin significantly decreased oxidative phosphorylation of LTS fibroblasts, suggesting at a potential mechanism for the reduced proliferation and differentiation. Furthermore, rapamycin's anti-fibroblast effects indicate a promising adjuvant therapy for the treatment of laryngotracheal stenosis.
Project description:Metformin is a widely-used treatment for type 2 diabetes and is reported to extend health and lifespan as a caloric restriction (CR) mimetic. Although the benefits of metformin are well documented, the impact of this compound on the function and organization of the genome in normal tissues is unclear. To explore this impact, primary human fibroblasts were treated in culture with metformin resulting in a significant decrease in cell proliferation without evidence of cell death. Furthermore, metformin induced repositioning of chromosomes 10 and 18 within the nuclear volume indicating altered genome organization. Transcriptome analyses from RNA sequencing datasets revealed that alteration in growth profiles and chromosome positioning occurred concomitantly with changes in gene expression profiles. We further identified that different concentrations of metformin induced different transcript profiles; however, significant enrichment in the activator protein 1 (AP-1) transcription factor network was common between the different treatments. Comparative analyses revealed that metformin induced divergent changes in the transcriptome than that of rapamycin, another proposed mimetic of CR. Promoter analysis and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays of genes that changed expression in response to metformin revealed enrichment of the transcriptional regulator forkhead box O3a (FOXO3a) in normal human fibroblasts, but not of the predicted serum response factor (SRF). Therefore, we have demonstrated that metformin has significant impacts on genome organization and function in normal human fibroblasts, different from those of rapamycin, with FOXO3a likely playing a role in this response.
Project description:Background: IL-1? is a highly potent pro-inflammatory cytokine and its secretion is tightly regulated. Inactive pro-IL-1? is transcribed in response to innate immune receptors activating NF?B. If tissue damage occurs, danger signals released from necrotic cells, such as ATP, can activate NLRP3-inflammasomes (multiprotein complexes consisting of NLRP3, ASC, and active caspase-1) which cleaves and activates pro-IL-1?. NLRP3 activation also depends on NEK7 and mitochondrial ROS-production. Thus, IL-1? secretion may be regulated at the level of each involved component. We have previously shown that NLRP3-dependent IL-1? release can be induced in cardiac fibroblasts by pro-inflammatory stimuli. However, anti-inflammatory mechanisms targeting IL-1? release in cardiac cells have not been investigated. mTOR is a key regulator of protein metabolism, including autophagy and proteasome activity. In this study we explored whether autophagy or proteasomal degradation are regulators of NLRP3 inflammasome activation and IL-1? release from cardiac fibroblasts. Methods and Results: Serum starvation selectively reduced LPS/ATP-induced IL-1? secretion from cardiac fibroblasts. However, no other inflammasome components, nor mitochondrial mass, were affected. The mTOR inhibitor rapamycin restored pro-IL-1? protein levels as well as LPS/ATP-induced IL-1? release from serum starved cells. However, neither serum starvation nor rapamycin induced autophagy in cardiac fibroblasts. Conversely, chloroquine and bafilomycin A (inhibitors of autophagy) and betulinic acid (a proteasome activator) effectively reduced LPS-induced pro-IL-1? protein levels. Key findings were reinvestigated in human monocyte-derived macrophages. Conclusion: In cardiac fibroblasts, mTOR inhibition selectively favors pro-IL-1? synthesis while proteasomal degradation and not autophagy is the major catabolic anti-inflammatory mechanism for degradation of this cytokine.
Project description:The mitotic checkpoint has evolved to prevent chromosome mis-segregations by delaying mitosis when unattached chromosomes are present. Inducing severe chromosome segregation errors by ablating the mitotic checkpoint causes cell death. Here we have analyzed the consequences of gradual increases in chromosome segregation errors on the viability of tumor cells and normal human fibroblasts. Partial reduction of essential mitotic checkpoint components in four tumor cell lines caused mild chromosome mis-segregations, but no lethality. These cells were, however, remarkably more sensitive to low doses of taxol, which enhanced the amount and severity of chromosome segregation errors. Sensitization to taxol was achieved by reducing levels of Mps1 or BubR1, proteins having dual roles in checkpoint activation and chromosome alignment, but not by reducing Mad2, functioning solely in the mitotic checkpoint. Moreover, we find that untransformed human fibroblasts with reduced Mps1 levels could not be sensitized to sublethal doses of taxol. Thus, targeting the mitotic checkpoint and chromosome alignment simultaneously may selectively kill tumor cells by enhancing chromosome mis-segregations.
Project description:The skin protects the body against harmful substances and microorganisms. When the skin is damaged, wound healing must be finely regulated to restore the normal function of skin tissue. Artocarpin (ARTO), a prenylated flavonoid purified from the plant Artocarpus communis, has been reported to have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the wound healing potential and therapeutic mechanism of ARTO. Immunohistochemical staining of neutrophils and macrophages and mouse cytokine array analysis demonstrated that ARTO accelerates inflammatory progression and subsequently decreases persistent inflammation. ARTO increases collagen production and increases human fibroblast proliferation and migration by activating the P38 and JNK pathways. Moreover, ARTO increases the proliferation and migration of human keratinocytes through the ERK and P38 pathways and augments human endothelial cell proliferation and tube formation through the Akt and P38 pathways. Together, our data suggested that ARTO enhances skin wound healing, possibly by accelerating the inflammatory phase and by increasing myofibroblast differentiation, proliferation and migration of fibroblasts and keratinocytes, collagen synthesis and maturation, re-epithelialization, and angiogenesis. These findings indicate that ARTO has potential as a potent therapeutic agent for the treatment of skin wounds.
Project description:We report the effects of Rapamycin treatment on the transcriptome of normal human dermal fibroblasts isolated from foreskin (designated 2DD). We sequenced mRNA from 2 replicates of proliferative (PRO) quiescent (QUI, serum starved) or treated with 500nM Rapamycin for 5 days (RAP). Comparative analyses with PRO transcripts a baseline indicate that genes that changed expression from Rapamycin treated fibroblasts are significantly different from those of quiescence cells. Rapamycin treated cells showed a significant enrichment for cytokines from the Il-6 cascade. Overall design: Examination of mRNAs from proliferative, quiescent (serum starvation) and Rapamycin (5oonM, 5days) treated 2DD normal human dermal/foreskin fibroblasts.
Project description:Primary rodent cells undergo replicative senescence, independent from telomere shortening. We have recently shown that treatment with rapamycin during passages 3-7 suppressed replicative senescence in rat embryonic fibroblasts (REFs), which otherwise occurred by 10-14 passages. Here, we further investigated rapamycin-primed cells for an extended number of passages. Rapamycin-primed cells continued to proliferate without accumulation of senescent markers. Importantly, these cells retained the ability to undergo serum starvation- and etoposide-induced cell cycle arrest. The p53/p21 pathway was functional. This indicates that rapamycin did not cause either transformation or loss of cell cycle checkpoints. We found that rapamycin activated transcription of pluripotent genes, oct-4, sox-2, nanog, as well as further upregulated telomerase (tert) gene. The rapamycin-derived cells have mostly non-rearranged, near-normal karyotype. Still, when cultivated for a higher number of passages, these cells acquired a chromosomal marker within the chromosome 3. We conclude that suppression mTORC1 activity may prevent replicative senescence without transformation of rodent cells.