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Inadequate pancreatic β cell function underlies type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Strategies to expand functional cells have focused on discovering and controlling mechanisms that limit the proliferation of human β cells. Here, we developed an engraftment strategy to examine age-associated human islet cell replication competence and reveal mechanisms underlying age-dependent decline of β cell proliferation in human islets. We found that exendin-4 (Ex-4), an agonist of the glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor (GLP-1R), stimulates human β cell proliferation in juvenile but not adult islets. This age-dependent responsiveness does not reflect loss of GLP-1R signaling in adult islets, since Ex-4 treatment stimulated insulin secretion by both juvenile and adult human β cells. We show that the mitogenic effect of Ex-4 requires calcineurin/nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT) signaling. In juvenile islets, Ex-4 induced expression of calcineurin/NFAT signaling components as well as target genes for proliferation-promoting factors, including NFATC1, FOXM1, and CCNA1. By contrast, expression of these factors in adult islet β cells was not affected by Ex-4 exposure. These studies reveal age-dependent signaling mechanisms regulating human β cell proliferation, and identify elements that could be adapted for therapeutic expansion of human β cells.
β-Cell proliferation and expansion during pregnancy are crucial for maintaining euglycemia in response to increased metabolic demands placed on the mother. Prolactin and placental lactogen signal through the prolactin receptor (PRLR) and contribute to adaptive β-cell responses in pregnancy; however, the in vivo requirement for PRLR signaling specifically in maternal β-cell adaptations remains unknown. We generated a floxed allele of Prlr, allowing conditional loss of PRLR in β-cells. In this study, we show that loss of PRLR signaling in β-cells results in gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), reduced β-cell proliferation, and failure to expand β-cell mass during pregnancy. Targeted PRLR loss in maternal β-cells in vivo impaired expression of the transcription factor Foxm1, both G1/S and G2/M cyclins, tryptophan hydroxylase 1 (Tph1), and islet serotonin production, for which synthesis requires Tph1. This conditional system also revealed that PRLR signaling is required for the transient gestational expression of the transcription factor MafB within a subset of β-cells during pregnancy. MafB deletion in maternal β-cells also produced GDM, with inadequate β-cell expansion accompanied by failure to induce PRLR-dependent target genes regulating β-cell proliferation. These results unveil molecular roles for PRLR signaling in orchestrating the physiologic expansion of maternal β-cells during pregnancy.
© 2016 by the American Diabetes Association. Readers may use this article as long as the work is properly cited, the use is educational and not for profit, and the work is not altered.
The role(s) of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in hepatocytes is unknown. We generated a murine hepatocyte specific-EGFR knockout (KO) model to evaluate how loss of hepatocellular EGFR expression affects processes such as EGF clearance, circulating EGF concentrations, and liver regeneration following 70% resection or CCl4-induced centrilobular injury. We were able to disrupt EGFR expression effectively in hepatocytes and showed that the ability of EGF and heregulin (HRG) to phosphorylate EGFR and ERBB3, respectively, required EGFR. Loss of hepatocellular EGFR impaired clearance of exogenous EGF from the portal circulation but paradoxically resulted in reduced circulating levels of endogenous EGF. This was associated with decreased submandibular salivary gland production of EGF. EGFR disruption did not result in increased expression of other ERBB proteins or Met, except in neonatal mice. Liver regeneration following 70% hepatectomy revealed a mild phenotype, with no change in cyclin D1 expression and slight differences in cyclin A expression compared with controls. Peak 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine labeling was shifted from 36 to 48 h. Centrilobular damage and regenerative response induced by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) were identical in the KO and wild-type mice. In contrast, loss of Met increased CCl4-induced necrosis and delayed regeneration. Although loss of hepatocellular EGFR alone did not have an effect in this model, EGFR-Met double KOs displayed enhanced necrosis and delayed liver regeneration compared with Met KOs alone. This suggests that EGFR and Met may partially compensate for the loss of the other, although other compensatory mechanisms can be envisioned.
Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.
Cyclin A-Cdk2, a cell cycle regulated Ser/Thr kinase, plays important roles in a variety of apoptoticprocesses. However, the mechanism of cyclin A-Cdk2 regulated apoptosis remains unclear. Here, we demonstrated that Rad9, a member of the BH3-only subfamily of Bcl-2 proteins, could be phosphorylated by cyclin A-Cdk2 in vitro and in vivo. Cyclin A-Cdk2 catalyzed the phosphorylation of Rad9 at serine 328 in HeLa cells during apoptosis induced by etoposide, an inhibitor of topoisomeraseII. The phosphorylation of Rad9 resulted in its translocation from the nucleus to the mitochondria and its interaction with Bcl-xL. The forced activation of cyclin A-Cdk2 in these cells by the overexpression of cyclin A,triggered Rad9 phosphorylation at serine 328 and thereby promoted the interaction of Rad9 with Bcl-xL and the subsequent initiation of the apoptotic program. The pro-apoptotic effects regulated by the cyclin A-Cdk2 complex were significantly lower in cells transfected with Rad9S328A, an expression vector that encodes a Rad9 mutant that is resistant to cyclin A-Cdk2 phosphorylation. These findings suggest that cyclin A-Cdk2 regulates apoptosis through a mechanism that involves Rad9phosphorylation.
A challenge in studying organogenesis is the ability to identify progenitor cell populations. To address this problem, we characterized the expression patterns of cell cycle proteins during mouse retinal development and used flow cytometry to determine the expression profiles in the cell cycle. We found that MCM6 and PCNA are expressed in essentially all retinal progenitor cells throughout the proliferative period and these proteins are readily detectable in all cell cycle phases. Furthermore, their expression levels are downregulated as cells exit the cell cycle and differentiate. We also analyzed the expression of Cyclins D1, A2, and B1, and phosphorylated Histone H3 and found unexpected expression patterns and cell cycle profiles. The combined utilization of the markers tested and the use of flow cytometry should further facilitate the study of stem and progenitor cell behavior during development and in adult tissues.
(c) 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Eukaryotic cells possess overlapping mechanisms to ensure that DNA replication is restricted to the S phase of the cell cycle. The levels of hOrc1p, the largest subunit of the human origin recognition complex, vary during the cell division cycle. In rapidly proliferating cells, hOrc1p is expressed and targeted to chromatin as cells exit mitosis and prereplicative complexes are formed. Later, as cyclin A accumulates and cells enter S phase, hOrc1p is ubiquitinated on chromatin and then degraded. hOrc1p destruction occurs through the proteasome and is signaled in part by the SCF(Skp2) ubiquitin-ligase complex. Other hORC subunits are stable throughout the cell cycle. The regulation of hOrc1p may be an important mechanism in maintaining the ploidy in human cells.
In this study, we examined whether or not a small peptide derived from p16(INK4A) protein with the antennapedia carrier sequence could inhibit the growth of pancreatic cancer cells through the inhibition of cell cycle progression. Growth inhibition by the p16-derived peptide was observed in a time- and dose-dependent manner in AsPC-1 and BxPC-3 cells (p16-negative and pRb-positive), whereas Saos-2 cells (p16-positive and pRb-negative) showed no inhibitory effect. In AsPC-1 and BxPC-3 cells, the proportion of cells in the G(1) phase markedly increased 48 h after treatment with 20 microM p16-derived peptide. Cell-cycle analysis of Saos-2 cells showed little change during the entire period of treatment. Immunoblot analysis showed inhibition of pRb phosphorylation after treatment of BxPC-3 with 10 microM p16 peptide. Furthermore, the p16 peptide caused a decrease in cyclin A at later times of treatment. These results demonstrate that the p16-derived peptide can inhibit the growth of p16-negative and pRb-positive pancreatic cancer cells by means of G(1) phase cell cycle arrest resulting from the inhibition of pRb phosphorylation. Restoration of p16/pRb tumor-suppressive pathway by re-expression of p16(INK4A) may play a therapeutic role in the treatment of pancreatic cancer.
Salicylate and its pro-drug form aspirin are widely used medicinally for their analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, and more recently for their ability to protect against colon cancer and cardiovascular disease. Despite the wide use of salicylate, the mechanisms underlying its biological activities are largely unknown. Recent reports suggest that salicylate may produce some of its effects by modulating the activities of protein kinases. Since we have previously shown that the farnesyltransferase inhibitor l-744, 832 inhibits cell proliferation and p70(s6k) activity, and salicylate inhibits cell proliferation, we examined whether salicylate affects p70(s6k) activity. We find that salicylate potently inhibits p70(s6k) activation and phosphorylation in a p38 MAPK-independent manner. Interestingly, low salicylate concentrations (=250 microm) inhibit p70(s6k) activation by phorbol myristate acetate, while higher salicylate concentrations (>/=5 mm) are required to block p70(s6k) activation by epidermal growth factor + insulin-like growth factor-1. These data suggest that salicylate may selectively inhibit p70(s6k) activation in response to specific stimuli. Inhibition of p70(s6k) by salicylate occurs within 5 min, is independent of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase pathway, and is associated with dephosphorylation of p70(s6k) on its major rapamycin-sensitive site, Thr(389). A rapamycin-resistant mutant of p70(s6k) is resistant to salicylate-induced Thr(389) dephosphorylation.