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  • 1
    ISSN: 1471-4159
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Gulf war illnesses (GWI) are currently affecting thousands of veterans. To date, the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of these illnesses remain unknown. During Gulf war I, military personnel were exposed to multiple stressors, one or more vaccines, pyridostigmine (PY), and other chemicals. In our previous studies, we found that stress induces activation of mitogen activated protein-kinase kinase 4 (MKK4) and c-Jun-N-terminal kinase (JNK) in the mouse brain (Liu et al. 2004). Our working hypothesis is that stress, vaccination, and PY may synergistically induce activation of MKK4 and JNK in the brain, leading to over-activation of these kinases and neurological injuries. To test our hypothesis, we examined the effect of keyhole limpet hemocyanin (KLH) immunization alone or in combination with PY on activation of MKK4 and JNK induced by stress. We found that KLH immunization alone had a small effect on MKK4 or JNK activity but it significantly enhanced and prolonged activation of these kinases induced by stress, from a few hours to several days. Additionally, KLH immunization caused activation of p38MAPK. PY treatment further enhanced and prolonged activation of these kinases induced by stress in combination with KLH immunization and triggered activation of caspase-3. Our current studies suggest that stress, vaccination, and PY may synergistically act on multiple stress-activated kinases in the brain to cause neurological impairments in GWI.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1471-4159
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Stress is a part of daily life. However, molecular mechanisms underlying the activation of limbic-hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (LHPA) axis remains unknown. In this study, we explored whether activation of the mitogen-activated kinase kinase 4 (MKK4)-c-Jun-N-terminal kinase (JNK) signaling pathway may play a role in the activation of the LHPA axis. We found that forced-swim stress induced elevation of activated MKK4 in the hippocampal formation, amygdala, and hypothalamus. Unlike MKK4, a high basal level of JNK activity is present in many brain areas of unstressed mice. Forced-swim stress significantly elevated JNK activity in the hypothalamus and amygdala and, to a lesser extent, in the cortex, CA1 and CA3 regions, and the dentate gyrus. To further investigate the role of MKK4 and JNK in induction of stress responses, we investigated whether a different stress, namely, restraint stress, induced activation of MKK4 or JNK in the brain. We found that restraint stress also induced elevation of activated MKK4 and JNK in the hippocampal formation, amygdala, and hypothalamus. Because MKK4 and JNK were activated within 5 min following stress, we propose that the MKK4-JNK signaling may be an early neural event in the initiation of neuroendocrine, autonomic and behavioral stress responses.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1471-4159
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Based on the critical role of actin in the maintenance of synaptic function, we examined whether expression of familial β-amyloid precursor protein APP-V642I (IAPP) or mutant presenilin-1 L286V (mPS1) affects actin polymerization in rat septal neuronal cells. Expression of either IAPP or mPS1 but not wild-type amyloid precursor protein or presenilin-1induced formation of actin stress fibers in SN1 cells, a septal neuronal cell line. Treatment with β-amyloid (Aβ) peptide also caused formation of actin stress fibers in SN1 cells and primary cultured hippocampal neurons. Treatment with a γ-secretase inhibitor completely blocked formation of actin stress fibers, indicating that overproduction of Aβ peptide induces actin stress fibers. Because activation of the p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK)–mitogen-associated protein kinase-associated protein kinase (MAPKAPK)-2–heat-shock protein 27 signaling pathway mediates actin polymerization, we explored whether Aβ peptide activates p38MAPK and MAPKAPK-2. Expression of IAPP or mPS1 induced activation of p38MAPK and MAPKAPK-2. Treatment with a p38MAPK inhibitor completely inhibited formation of actin stress fibers mediated by Aβ peptide, IAPP or mPS1. Moreover, treatment with a γ-secretase inhibitor completely blocked activation of p38MAPK and MAPKAPK-2. In summary, our data suggest that overproduction of Aβ peptide induces formation of actin stress fibers through activation of the p38MAPK signaling pathway in septal neuronal cells.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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