Striated preferentially expressed protein kinase (SPEG), a myosin light chain kinase, is mutated in centronuclear myopathy (CNM) and/or dilated cardiomyopathy. No precise therapies are available against this disorder, and gene replacement therapy is not a feasible option due to the large size of SPEG. We evaluated the potential of dynamin-2 (DNM2) reduction as a potential therapeutic strategy as it has been shown to revert muscle phenotypes in mouse models of CNM caused by MTM1, DNM2, and BIN1 mutations. We determined that SPEGβ interacts with DNM2, and SPEG deficiency causes an increase in DNM2 levels. The DNM2 reduction strategy in Speg-KO mice was associated with an increase in life span, body weight, and motor performance. Additionally, it normalized the distribution of triadic proteins, triad ultrastructure, and triad number, and restored phosphatidylinositol-3-phosphate levels in SPEG-deficient skeletal muscles. While DNM2 reduction rescued the myopathy phenotype, it did not improve cardiac dysfunction, indicating a differential tissue-specific function. Combining DNM2 reduction with other strategies may be needed to target both the cardiac and skeletal defects associated with SPEG deficiency. DNM2 reduction should be explored as a therapeutic strategy against other genetic myopathies (and dystrophies) associated with a high level of DNM2.
Qifei Li, Jasmine Lin, Jeffrey J. Widrick, Shiyu Luo, Gu Li, Yuanfan Zhang, Jocelyn Laporte, Mark A. Perrella, Xiaoli Liu, Pankaj B. Agrawal
Integrins, the principal extracellular matrix (ECM) receptors of the cell, promote cell adhesion, migration, and proliferation, which are key events for cancer growth and metastasis. To date, most integrin-targeted cancer therapeutics have disrupted integrin-ECM interactions, which are viewed as critical for integrin functions. However, such agents have failed to improve cancer patient outcomes. We show that the highly expressed integrin β1 subunit is required for lung adenocarcinoma development in a carcinogen-induced mouse model. Likewise, human lung adenocarcinoma cell lines with integrin β1 deletion failed to form colonies in soft agar and tumors in mice. Mechanistically, we demonstrate that these effects do not require integrin β1-mediated adhesion to ECM but are dependent on integrin β1 cytoplasmic tail-mediated activation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK). Together, these studies support a critical role for integrin β1 in lung tumorigenesis that is mediated through constitutive, ECM-binding independent signaling involving the cytoplasmic tail.
Scott M. Haake, Erin J. Plosa, Jonathan A. Kropski, Lindsay A. Venton, Anupama Reddy, Fabian Bock, Betty T. Chang, Allen J. Luna, Kateryna Nabukhotna, Zhi-Qi Xu, Rebecca A. Prather, Sharon Lee, Harikrishna Tanjore, Vasiliy V. Polosukhin, Olga M. Viquez, Angela Jones, Wentian Luo, Matthew H. Wilson, W. Kimryn Rathmell, Pierre P. Massion, Ambra Pozzi, Timothy S. Blackwell, Roy Zent
Disrupted liver regeneration following hepatectomy represents an “undruggable” clinical challenge associated with poor patient outcomes. Yes-associated protein (YAP), a transcriptional co-activator which is repressed by the Hippo pathway, is instrumental in liver regeneration. We have previously described an alternative, Hippo-independent mechanism of YAP activation mediated by tyrosine-protein phosphatase non-receptor type 11 (SHP2) inhibition. Herein, we examined the effects of YAP activation with a selective SHP1/SHP2 inhibitor, NSC-87877, on liver regeneration in murine partial hepatectomy models. In our studies, NSC-87877 led to accelerated hepatocyte proliferation, improved liver regeneration, and decreased markers of injury following partial hepatectomy. The effects of NSC-87877 were lost in mice with hepatocyte-specific Yap/Taz deletion, which demonstrated dependence on these molecules for the enhanced regenerative response. Furthermore, administration of NSC-87877 to murine models of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis was associated with improved survival and decreased markers of injury post-hepatectomy. Evaluation of transcriptomic changes in the context of NSC-87877 administration revealed reduction in fibrotic signaling and augmentation of cell cycle signaling. Cytoprotective changes included downregulation of Nr4a1, an apoptosis inducer. Collectively, the data suggest that SHP2 inhibition induces a pro-proliferative and cytoprotective enhancement of liver regeneration dependent on YAP.
Ryan D. Watkins, EeeLN H. Buckarma, Jennifer L. Tomlinson, Chantal E. McCabe, Jennifer A. Yonkus, Nathan W. Werneburg, Rachel L. Bayer, Patrick P. Starlinger, Keith D. Robertson, Chen Wang, Gregory J. Gores, Rory L. Smoot
Current treatments fail to modify the underlying pathophysiology and disease progression of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), necessitating alternative therapies. Here, we show that COPD subjects have increased IL-36γ and decreased IL-36 receptor antagonist (IL-36Ra) in bronchoalveolar and nasal fluid compared to control subjects. IL-36γ is derived from small airway epithelial cells (SAEC) and further induced by a viral mimetic, whereas IL-36RA is derived from macrophages. IL-36γ stimulates release of the neutrophil chemoattractants CXCL1 and CXCL8, as well as elastolytic matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) from small airway fibroblasts (SAF). Proteases released from COPD neutrophils cleave and activate IL-36γ thereby perpetuating IL-36 inflammation. Transfer of culture media from SAEC to SAF stimulated release of CXCL1, that was inhibited by exogenous IL-36RA. The use of a therapeutic antibody that inhibits binding to the IL-36 receptor (IL-36R) attenuated IL-36γ driven inflammation and cellular cross talk. We have demonstrated a mechanism for the amplification and propagation of neutrophilic inflammation in COPD and that blocking this cytokine family via a IL-36R neutralizing antibody could be a promising new therapeutic strategy in the treatment of COPD.
Jonathan R. Baker, Peter S. Fenwick, Carolin K. Koss, Harriet B. Owles, Sarah L. Elkin, Jay S. Fine, Matthew Thomas, Karim C. Kasmi, Peter J. Barnes, Louise E. Donnelly
Angiopoietin-2 (Ang-2) is a key mediator of vascular disease during sepsis, and elevated plasma levels of Ang-2 are associated with organ injury scores and poor clinical outcomes. We have previously observed that biomarkers of endothelial glycocalyx (EG) damage correlate with plasma Ang-2 levels, suggesting a potential mechanistic linkage between EG injury and Ang-2 expression during states of systemic inflammation. However, the cell signaling mechanisms regulating Ang-2 expression following EG damage are unknown. In the current study, we determined the temporal associations between plasma heparan sulfate (HS) levels as a marker of EG erosion and plasma Ang-2 levels in children with sepsis and in mouse models of sepsis. Secondly, we evaluated the role of shear stress-mediated 5’-adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) signaling in Ang-2 expression following enzymatic HS cleavage from the surface of human primary lung microvascular endothelial cells (HLMVEC). We found that plasma HS levels peak prior to plasma Ang-2 levels in children and mice with sepsis. Further, we discovered that impaired AMPK signaling contributes to increased Ang-2 expression following HS cleavage from flow conditioned HLMVECs, establishing a novel paradigm by which Ang-2 may be upregulated during sepsis.
Robert P. Richter, Amit R. Ashtekar, Lei Zheng, Danielle Pretorius, Tripathi Kaushlendra, Ralph D. Sanderson, Amit Gaggar, Jillian R. Richter
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