|Ghrelin and des-acyl ghrelin promote differentiation and fusion of C2C12 skeletal muscle cells.|
Filigheddu, Nicoletta, et al.
Mol. Biol. Cell, 18: 986-94 (2007)
Ghrelin is an acylated peptidyl gastric hormone acting on the pituitary and hypothalamus to stimulate appetite, adiposity, and growth hormone release, through activation of growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHSR)-1a receptor. Moreover, ghrelin features several activities such as inhibition of apoptosis, regulation of differentiation, and stimulation or inhibition of proliferation of several cell types. Ghrelin acylation is absolutely required for both GHSR-1a binding and its central endocrine activities. However, the unacylated ghrelin form, des-acyl ghrelin, which does not bind GHSR-1a and is devoid of any endocrine activity, is far more abundant than ghrelin in plasma, and it shares with ghrelin some of its cellular activities. In here we show that both ghrelin and des-acyl ghrelin stimulate proliferating C2C12 skeletal myoblasts to differentiate and to fuse into multinucleated myotubes in vitro through activation of p38. Consistently, both ghrelin and des-acyl ghrelin inhibit C2C12 proliferation in growth medium. Moreover, the ectopic expression of ghrelin in C2C12 enhances differentiation and fusion of these myoblasts in differentiation medium. Finally, we show that C2C12 cells do not express GHSR-1a, but they do contain a common high-affinity binding site recognized by both acylated and des-acylated ghrelin, suggesting that the described activities on C2C12 are likely mediated by this novel, yet unidentified receptor for both ghrelin forms.
|A 10-amino acid domain within human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 and type 2 tax protein sequences is responsible for their divergent subcellular distribution.|
Meertens, Laurent, et al.
J. Biol. Chem., 279: 43307-20 (2004)
Human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 and type 2 (HTLV-1/2) are related retroviruses that infect T-lymphocytes. Whereas HTLV-1 infection can cause leukemia, HTLV-2 has not been demonstrated to be the agent of a hematological malignant disease. Nevertheless, the virally encoded Tax-1 and Tax-2 transactivators display a high percentage of similarity. Tax-1 is a shuttling protein that contains a noncanonical nuclear localization signal as well as a nuclear export signal. The presence of the nuclear localization signal and the nuclear export signal domains in the Tax-2 sequence has not been determined. The distribution of Tax-2 in infected cells is not known but has been assumed to be similar to that of Tax-1. By using a Tax-2-specific antibody, we report here that Tax-2 is located predominantly in the cytoplasm of the HTLV-2 immortalized or transformed infected T-cells. These results were confirmed after transient transfection of untagged Tax-1 and Tax-2 constructs, histidine tag Tax1/Tax2, GFP-Tax, and Tax-GFP fusion constructs in several cell lines. We show that this unanticipated localization is not due to a default in the Tax-2 nuclear localization signal functions nor to major differences in Tax-2 versus Tax-1 binding to the IKKgamma/NEMO protein. In addition, we demonstrate that inhibiting the proteasome results in a relocalization of Tax-1 in the cytoplasm, similar to that of Tax-2. By using a series of Tax-1/Tax-2 chimeras, we determined that the minimal domain that is necessary for Tax-2 peculiar distribution encompasses amino acids 90-100. Finally, we show a high correlation between intracellular localization of Tax and their NF-kappaB or CREB transactivating ability.
|Prevention of neuron and oligodendrocyte degeneration by interleukin-6 (IL-6) and IL-6 receptor/IL-6 fusion protein in organotypic hippocampal slices.|
Pizzi, Marina, et al.
Mol. Cell. Neurosci., 25: 301-11 (2004)
We investigated the effects of IL-6 and a chimeric derivative of IL-6 and soluble IL-6 receptor (IL6RIL6 chimera) on excitotoxic injury in rat organotypic hippocampal slices. Brief application of N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) induced astrocyte reactivity, neuron cell death, and oligodendrocyte degeneration, the latter caused by secondary activation of AMPA/kainate receptors. Both these cytokines rescued neurons and oligodendrocytes, albeit the chimeric compound was much more potent and efficient than IL-6. No change was produced on reactive astrocytosis. The cytokines preserved myelin basic protein (MBP) production in slices exposed to excitotoxic insult, and when applied singularly for a week, they also enhanced both MBP and proteolipid protein expression. These effects occurred through activating the signal transducer gp130 and were associated with stimulation of transcription factors STAT1 and STAT3. Our results suggest that IL-6 and IL6RIL6 may prove to be valuable in treating neurodegenerative and demyelinating diseases.