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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.
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.
Ataxia teleangiectasia mutated (ATM) kinase, ATM-Rad3-related (ATR) kinase and DNA-protein kinase (DNA-PK) belong to a subgroup of protein kinases which play a role in the DNA damage response. In this study, cisplatin was shown to increase ATR activity and decrease ATM and DNA-PK activity. Caffeine, a nonspecific inhibitor of ATR, enhanced the cytotoxic effect of cisplatin, modestly decreased the p53 and p21WAF-1 response to cisplatin, and affected the cdc2-p34/cyclin B1 complex by decreasing both cyclin B1 protein accumulation and cdc2-p34 tyrosine 15 phosphorylation. The observed alteration of several potential ATR downstream targets suggests that inhibition of ATR activity may be one of the mechanism by which caffeine regulates sensitivity to cisplatin.
p202, an interferon (IFN) inducible protein, arrests cell cycle at G1 phase leading to cell growth retardation. We previously showed that ectopic expression of p202 in human prostate cancer cells renders growth inhibition and suppression of transformation phenotype in vitro. In this report, we showed that prostate cancer cells with stable expression of p202 were less tumorigenic than the parental cells. The antitumor activity of p202 was further demonstrated by an ex vivo treatment of prostate cancer cells with p202 expression vector that showed significant tumor suppression in mouse xenograft model. Importantly, to achieve a prostate-specific antitumor effect by p202, we employed a prostate-specific probasin (ARR2PB) gene promoter to direct p202 expression (ARR2PB-p202) in an androgen receptor (AR)-positive manner. The ARR2PB-p202/liposome complex was systemically administered into mice bearing orthotopic AR-positive prostate tumors. We showed that parenteral administration of an ARR2PB-p202/liposome preparation led to prostate-specific p202 expression and tumor suppression in orthotopic prostate cancer xenograft model. Furthermore, with DNA array technique, we showed that the expression of p202 was accompanied by downregulation of G2/M phase cell-cycle regulators, cyclin B, and p55cdc. Together, our results suggest that p202 suppresses prostate tumor growth, and that a prostate-specific antitumor effect can be achieved by systemic administration of liposome-mediated delivery of ARR2PB-p202.
Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma is a highly lethal malignancy that is resistant to traditional cytotoxic therapy. High rates of activating codon 12 K-Ras mutations in this disease have generated considerable interest in the therapeutic application of novel farnesyl transferase inhibitors (FTIs). However, a comprehensive analysis of the effects of FTI treatment on pancreatic cancer cells has not been performed. Treatment of five different human pancreatic cancer cell lines with FTI L-744,832 resulted in inhibition of anchorage-dependent growth, with wide variation in sensitivity among different lines. Effective growth inhibition by L-744,832 correlated with accumulation of cells with a tetraploid (4N) DNA content and high levels of cyclin B1/cdc2 kinase activity, implying cell cycle arrest downstream from the DNA damage-inducible G2/M cell cycle checkpoint. In addition, sensitive cell lines underwent apoptosis as evidenced by changes in nuclear morphology and internucleosomal DNA fragmentation. L-744,832 at a concentration of 1 microM additively enhanced the cytotoxic effect of ionizing radiation, apparently by overriding G2/M checkpoint activation. The effects of FTI treatment on cell growth and cell cycle regulation were associated with changes in posttranslational processing of H-Ras and N-Ras, but not K-Ras. The results confirm the potential therapeutic efficacy of FTI treatment in pancreatic cancer, and suggest that farnesylated proteins other than K-Ras may act as important regulators of G2/M cell cycle kinetics.
Defective cell cycle checkpoint function has been linked to enhanced sensitivity of tumor cells to certain genotoxic agents. To determine whether loss of the G1-S checkpoint function would sensitize tumor cells to microtubule inhibitor (MTI)-induced apoptosis, we examined the effect of the MTIs, Taxol and vincristine, on the cell cycle kinetics and survival of two isogenic cell lines, HCT116 p21+/+ and HCT116 p21-/-, which differ only at the p21 locus. p21-deficient cells displayed a dose-dependent, enhanced chemosensitivity to MTIs in both monolayer and soft agar assays as well as in mice xenograft tumors. The increased sensitivity of the p21-deficient cells to MTIs correlated with prolonged cyclin B1/Cdc2 activity and the occurrence of endoreduplication. Furthermore, sensitivity of p53-deficient cells to MTI-induced apoptosis was significantly reduced by induction of ectopic p21 protein. The results suggest that the status of G1-S checkpoint function in tumor cells may be an important determinant in the efficacy of MTIs used clinically.
During a normal cell cycle, entry into S phase is dependent on completion of mitosis and subsequent activation of cyclin-dependent kinases (Cdks) in G1. These events are monitored by checkpoint pathways. Recent studies and data presented herein show that after treatment with microtubule inhibitors (MTIs), cells deficient in the Cdk inhibitor p21(Waf1/Cip1) enter S phase with a >/=4N DNA content, a process known as endoreduplication, which results in polyploidy. To determine how p21 prevents MTI-induced endoreduplication, the G1/S and G2/M checkpoint pathways were examined in two isogenic cell systems: HCT116 p21(+/+) and p21(-/-) cells and H1299 cells containing an inducible p21 expression vector (HIp21). Both HCT116 p21(-/-) cells and noninduced HIp21 cells endoreduplicated after MTI treatment. Analysis of G1-phase Cdk activities demonstrated that the induction of p21 inhibited endoreduplication through direct cyclin E/Cdk2 regulation. The kinetics of p21 inhibition of cyclin E/Cdk2 activity and binding to proliferating-cell nuclear antigen in HCT116 p21(+/+) cells paralleled the onset of endoreduplication in HCT116 p21(-/-) cells. In contrast, loss of p21 did not lead to deregulated cyclin D1-dependent kinase activities, nor did p21 directly regulate cyclin B1/Cdc2 activity. Furthermore, we show that MTI-induced endoreduplication in p53-deficient HIp21 cells was due to levels of p21 protein below a threshold required for negative regulation of cyclin E/Cdk2, since ectopic expression of p21 restored cyclin E/Cdk2 regulation and prevented endoreduplication. Based on these findings, we propose that p21 plays an integral role in the checkpoint pathways that restrain normal cells from entering S phase after aberrant mitotic exit due to defects in microtubule dynamics.
There is increasing evidence that prolonged mitotic arrest initiates apoptosis; however, little is known about the signaling pathways involved. Several studies have associated deregulated Cdc2 activity with apoptosis. Herein, we report that the anti-apoptotic protein, Bcl-2, undergoes cell cycle-dependent phosphorylation during mitosis when there is elevated Cdc2 activity. We found that paclitaxel (Taxol(R)) treatment of epithelial tumor cells induced a prolonged mitotic arrest, elevated levels of mitotic kinase activity, hyperphosphorylation of Bcl-2, and subsequent cell death. The Taxol-induced Bcl-2 phosphorylation was dose-dependent. Furthermore, phosphorylated Bcl-2 remained complexed with Bax in Taxol-treated cells undergoing apoptosis. Immunoprecipitation experiments revealed a Bcl-2-associated kinase capable of phosphorylating histone H1 in vitro. However, the kinase was likely not cyclin B1/Cdc2, since cyclin B1/Cdc2 was not detectable in Bcl-2 immunoprecipitates, nor was recombinant Bcl-2 phosphorylated in vitro by cyclin B1/Cdc2. The results of this study further define a link between mitotic kinase activation and the apoptotic machinery in the cell. However, the role, if any, of prolonged Bcl-2 phosphorylation in Taxol-mediated apoptosis awaits further definition of Bcl-2 mechanism of action. Taxol may increase cellular susceptibility to apoptosis by amplifying the normal downstream events associated with mitotic kinase activation.
The G2 cell cycle checkpoint protects cells from potentially lethal mitotic entry after DNA damage. This checkpoint involves inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdc2 at the tyrosine-15 (Y15) position, mediated in part by the Wee1 protein kinase. Recent evidence suggests that p53 may accelerate mitotic entry after DNA damage and that the override of the G2 checkpoint may play a role in the induction of apoptosis by p53. To determine the biochemical mechanism by which p53 inactivates the G2 checkpoint, the effects of p53 activation on Wee1 expression, Cdc2-Y15 phosphorylation, and cyclin B1-associated Cdc2 kinase activity were examined. Under conditions of either growth arrest or apoptosis, p53 activation resulted in the down-regulation of Wee1 expression and dephosphorylation of Cdc2. A parallel increase in cyclin B1/Cdc2 kinase activity was observed during p53-mediated apoptosis. Negative regulation of the Wee1 expression and Cdc2 phosphorylation by p53 was also evident in thymus tissue from p53+/+ mice but not from p53-/- mice. Inactivation of the G2 checkpoint may contribute to the tumor suppressor activity of p53.