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  • 1
    Keywords: RECEPTOR ; CELLS ; IN-VITRO ; SKIN ; PHOSPHORYLATION ; IDENTIFICATION ; MORPHOGENESIS ; HEPATOCYTE GROWTH-FACTOR ; C-MET ; REEPITHELIALIZATION
    Abstract: Cutaneous regeneration utilizes paracrine feedback mechanisms to fine-tune the regulation of epidermal keratinocyte proliferation and migration. However, it is unknown how fibroblast-derived hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) affects these mutually exclusive processes in distinct cell populations. We here show that HGF stimulates the expression and phosphorylation of the microtubule-destabilizing factor stathmin in primary human keratinocytes. Quantitative single cell- and cell population-based analyses revealed that basal stathmin levels are important for the migratory ability of keratinocytes in vitro; however, its expression is moderately induced in the migration tongue of mouse skin or organotypic multi-layered keratinocyte 3D cultures after full-thickness wounding. In contrast, clearly elevated stathmin expression is detectable in hyperproliferative epidermal areas. In vitro, stathmin silencing significantly reduced keratinocyte proliferation. Automated quantitative and time-resolved analyses in organotypic cocultures demonstrated a high correlation between Stathmin/phospho-Stathmin and Ki67 positivity in epidermal regions with proliferative activity. Thus, activation of stathmin may stimulate keratinocyte proliferation, while basal stathmin levels are sufficient for keratinocyte migration during cutaneous regeneration.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24066165
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  • 2
    Keywords: brain ; CANCER ; human ; PHENOTYPES ; STRESS ; INSIGHTS ; CONSUMPTION ; GLUTAMATE ; DRINKING ; DEPENDENCE ; WIDE ASSOCIATION ; Alcoholism ; drug addiction ; genome-wide association study (GWAS) ; GLUTAMATERGIC NEUROTRANSMISSION ; imaging genetics ; NALTREXONE ; QTL analysis ; TRANSPORTER GENE
    Abstract: Alcohol drinking is highly prevalent in many cultures and contributes to the global burden of disease. In fact, it was shown that alcohol constitutes 3.2% of all worldwide deaths in the year 2006 and is linked to more than 60 diseases, including cancers, cardiovascular diseases, liver cirrhosis, neuropsychiatric disorders, injuries and foetal alcohol syndrome. Alcoholism, which has been proven to have a high genetic load, is one potentially fatal consequence of chronic heavy alcohol consumption, and may be regarded as one of the most prevalent neuropsychiatric diseases afflicting our society today. The aim of the integrated genome research network 'Genetics of Alcohol Addiction'-which is a German inter-/trans-disciplinary life science consortium consisting of molecular biologists, behavioural pharmacologists, system biologists with mathematicians, human geneticists and clinicians-is to better understand the genetics of alcohol addiction by identifying and validating candidate genes and molecular networks involved in the aetiology of this pathology. For comparison, addictive behaviour to other drugs of abuse (e.g. cocaine) is studied as well. Here, we present an overview of our research consortium, the current state of the art on genetic research in the alcohol field, and list finally several of our recently published research highlights. As a result of our scientific efforts, better insights into the molecular and physiological processes underlying addictive behaviour will be obtained, new targets and target networks in the addicted brain will be defined, and subsequently, novel and individualized treatment strategies for our patients will be delivered
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
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  • 3
    Keywords: GENERATION ; GENE-EXPRESSION ; DIFFERENTIATION ; culture ; CENTRAL-NERVOUS-SYSTEM
    Abstract: Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) are a suitable tool to study basic molecular and cellular mechanisms of neurodevelopment. The directed differentiation of hiPSCs via the generation of a self-renewable neuronal precursor cell line allows the standardization of defined differentiation protocols. Here, we have investigated whether preconditioning with retinoic acid during early neural induction impacts on morphological and functional characteristics of the neuronal culture after terminal differentiation. For this purpose we have analyzed neuronal and glial cell markers, neuronal outgrowth, soma size, depolarization-induced distal shifts of the axon initial segment as well as glutamate-evoked calcium influx. Retinoic acid preconditioning led to a higher yield of neurons vs. glia cells and longer axons than unconditioned controls. In contrast, glutamatergic activation and depolarization induced structural plasticity were unchanged. Our results show that the treatment of neuroectodermal cells with retinoic acid during early development, i.e. during the neurulation phase, increases the yield of neuronal phenotypes, but does not impact on the functionality of terminally differentiated neuronal cells.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 26001168
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  • 4
    Abstract: Most lung cancer deaths are related to metastases, which indicates the necessity of detecting and inhibiting tumor cell dissemination. Here, we aimed to identify miRNAs involved in metastasis of lung adenocarcinoma as prognostic biomarkers and therapeutic targets. To that end, lymph node metastasis-associated miRNAs were identified in The Cancer Genome Atlas lung adenocarcinoma patient cohort (sequencing data; n = 449) and subsequently validated by qRT-PCR in an independent clinical cohort (n = 108). Overexpression of miRNAs located on chromosome 14q32 was associated with metastasis in lung adenocarcinoma patients. Importantly, Kaplan-Meier analysis and log-rank test revealed that higher expression levels of individual 14q32 miRNAs (mir-539, mir-323b, and mir-487a) associated with worse disease-free survival of never-smoker patients. Epigenetic analysis including DNA methylation microarray data and bisulfite sequencing validation demonstrated that the induction of 14q32 cluster correlated with genomic hypomethylation of the 14q32 locus. CRISPR activation technology, applied for the first time to functionally study the increase of clustered miRNA levels in a coordinated manner, showed that simultaneous overexpression of 14q32 miRNAs promoted tumor cell migratory and invasive properties. Analysis of individual miRNAs by mimic transfection further illustrated that miR-323b-3p, miR-487a-3p, and miR-539-5p significantly contributed to the invasive phenotype through the indirect regulation of different target genes. In conclusion, overexpression of 14q32 miRNAs, associated with the respective genomic hypomethylation, promotes metastasis and correlates with poor patient prognosis in lung adenocarcinoma.Implications: This study points to chromosome 14q32 miRNAs as promising targets to inhibit tumor cell dissemination and to predict patient prognosis in lung adenocarcinoma. Mol Cancer Res; 16(3); 390-402. (c)2018 AACR.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 29330288
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  • 5
    Abstract: Purpose: We previously showed that autologous dendritic cells (DCs) loaded with an allogeneic heat shock (HS)-conditioned melanoma cell-derived lysate, called TRIMEL, induce T-cell-mediated immune responses in stage IV melanoma patients. Importantly, a positive delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) reaction against TRIMEL after vaccination, correlated with patients prolonged survival. Furthermore, we observed that DTH reaction was associated with a differential response pattern reflected in the presence of distinct cell subpopulations in peripheral blood. Detected variations in patient responses encouraged molecular studies aimed to identify gene expression profiles induced after vaccination in treated patients, allowing the identification of new molecular predictive markers. Methods: Gene expression patterns were analyzed by microarrays during vaccination, and some of them confirmed by quantitative real-time reverse transcriptase PCR (qRT-PCR) in the total leukocyte population of a representative group of responder and non-responder patients. New candidates for biomarkers with predictive value were identified using bioinformatics, molecular analysis, and flow cytometry. Results: Seventeen genes overexpressed in responder patients after vaccination respect to non-responders were identified after a mathematical analysis, from which ten were linked to immune responses and five related to cell cycle control and signal transduction. In immunological responder patients, increased protein levels of the chemokine receptor CXCR4 and the Fc-receptor CD32 were observed on cell membranes of CD8+ T and B cells and the monocyte population, respectively, confirming gene expression results. Conclusions: Our study contributes to finding new molecular markers associated with clinical outcome and better understanding of clinically relevant immunological responses induced by anti-tumor DC-vaccines.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 29682201
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  • 6
    Keywords: Germany ; PATHWAY ; PATHWAYS ; NETWORKS ; SYSTEM ; SYSTEMS ; METABOLISM ; COMPLEX ; DNA ; FAMILY ; BIOLOGY ; DESIGN ; ESCHERICHIA-COLI ; EVOLUTION ; systems biology ; ORGANIZATION ; CLUSTER ; FAMILIES ; methods ; USA ; WORLD
    Abstract: A major challenge in systems biology is to understand how complex and highly connected metabolic networks are organized. The structure of these networks is investigated here by identifying sets of metabolites that have a similar biosynthetic potential. We measure the biosynthetic potential of a particular compound by determining all metabolites than can be produced from it and, following a terminology introduced previously, call this set the scope of the compound. To identify groups of compounds with similar scopes, we apply a hierarchical clustering method. We find that compounds within the same cluster often display similar chemical structures and appear in the same metabolic pathway. For each cluster we define a consensus scope by determining a set of metabolites that is most similar to all scopes within the cluster. This allows for a generalization from scopes of single compounds to scopes of a chemical family. We observe that most of the resulting consensus scopes overlap or are fully contained in others, revealing a hierarchical ordering of metabolites according to their biosynthetic potential. Our investigations show that this hierarchy is not only determined by the chemical complexity of the metabolites, but also strongly by their biological function. As a general tendency, metabolites which are necessary for essential cellular processes exhibit a larger biosynthetic potential than those involved in secondary metabolism. A central result is that chemically very similar substances with different biological functions may differ significantly in their biosynthetic potentials. Our studies provide an important step towards understanding fundamental design principles of metabolic networks determined by the structural and functional complexity of metabolites
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 18392147
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  • 7
    ISSN: 0378-4371
    Source: Elsevier Journal Backfiles on ScienceDirect 1907 - 2002
    Topics: Physics
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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