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With the ever-increasing burden of obesity and Type 2 diabetes, it is generally acknowledged that there remains a need for developing new therapeutics. One potential mechanism to combat obesity is to raise energy expenditure via increasing the amount of uncoupled respiration from the mitochondria-rich brown and beige adipocytes. With the recent appreciation of thermogenic adipocytes in humans, much effort is being made to elucidate the signaling pathways that regulate the browning of adipose tissue. In this review, we focus on the ligand-receptor signaling pathways that influence the cyclic nucleotides, cAMP and cGMP, in adipocytes. We chose to focus on G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR), guanylyl cyclase and phosphodiesterase regulation of adipocytes because they are the targets of a large proportion of all currently available therapeutics. Furthermore, there is a large overlap in their signaling pathways, as signaling events that raise cAMP or cGMP generally increase adipocyte lipolysis and cause changes that are commonly referred to as browning: increasing mitochondrial biogenesis, uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) expression and respiration.
© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the Biochemical Society.
O -Alkylguanine DNA-alkyltransferase (AGT), a DNA repair protein, can form crosslinks with DNA. The AGT-DNA crosslinks are known to be mutagenic when AGT is heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli, as well as in mammalian cells. To understand the biological consequences, reliable access to AGT-oligonucleotide crosslinks is needed. This article describes the synthesis and characterization of site-specific AGT-oligonucleotide crosslinks at the N2-position of deoxyguanosine and N6-position of deoxyadenosine. We developed a post-oligomerization strategy for the synthesis of propargyl-modified oligonucleotides. Copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition was used as a key step to obtain the iodoacetamide-linked oligonucleotides, which serve as good electrophiles for the crosslinking reaction with cysteine-145 of the active site of AGT. Trypsinization of AGT and hydrolysis of oligonucleotides, combined with analysis by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry, was utilized to confirm the nucleobase-adducted peptides. This method provides a useful strategy for the synthesis and characterization of site-specific DNA-protein crosslinks, which can be further used to understand proteolytic degradation-coupled DNA repair mechanisms. © 2019 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
© 2019 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Abasic sites are one of the most common DNA lesions. All known abasic site repair mechanisms operate only when the damage is in double-stranded DNA. Here, we report the discovery of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) binding, ESC-specific (HMCES) as a sensor of abasic sites in single-stranded DNA. HMCES acts at replication forks, binds PCNA and single-stranded DNA, and generates a DNA-protein crosslink to shield abasic sites from error-prone processing. This unusual HMCES DNA-protein crosslink intermediate is resolved by proteasome-mediated degradation. Acting as a suicide enzyme, HMCES prevents translesion DNA synthesis and the action of endonucleases that would otherwise generate mutations and double-strand breaks. HMCES is evolutionarily conserved in all domains of life, and its biochemical properties are shared with its E. coli ortholog. Thus, HMCES is an ancient DNA lesion recognition protein that preserves genome integrity by promoting error-free repair of abasic sites in single-stranded DNA.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Generation of daughter strands during DNA replication requires the action of DNA primase to synthesize an initial short RNA primer on the single-stranded DNA template. Primase is a heterodimeric enzyme containing two domains whose activity must be coordinated during primer synthesis: an RNA polymerase domain in the small subunit (p48) and a [4Fe4S] cluster-containing C-terminal domain of the large subunit (p58C). Here we examine the redox switching properties of the [4Fe4S] cluster in the full p48/p58 heterodimer using DNA electrochemistry. Unlike with isolated p58C, robust redox signaling in the primase heterodimer requires binding of both DNA and NTPs; NTP binding shifts the p48/p58 cluster redox potential into the physiological range, generating a signal near 160 mV vs NHE. Preloading of primase with NTPs enhances catalytic activity on primed DNA, suggesting that primase configurations promoting activity are more highly populated in the NTP-bound protein. We propose that p48/p58 binding of anionic DNA and NTPs affects the redox properties of the [4Fe4S] cluster; this electrostatic change is likely influenced by the alignment of primase subunits during activity because the configuration affects the [4Fe4S] cluster environment and coupling to DNA bases for redox signaling. Thus, both binding of polyanionic substrates and configurational dynamics appear to influence [4Fe4S] redox signaling properties. These results suggest that these factors should be considered generally in characterizing signaling networks of large, multisubunit DNA-processing [4Fe4S] enzymes.
Mouse laser-induced choroidal neovascularization (mouse LCNV) recapitulates the "wet" form of human age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) is a known inflammatory biomarker, and it increases in the choroidal neovascular tissues characteristic of this experimental model. We have designed and constructed gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) functionalized with hairpin-DNA that incorporates an antisense sequence complementary to VCAM-1 mRNA (AS-VCAM-1 hAuNPs) and tested them as optical imaging probes. The 3' end of the hairpin is coupled to a near-infrared fluorophore that is quenched by the AuNP surface via Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET). Hybridization of the antisense sequence to VCAM-1 mRNA displaces the fluorophore away from the AuNP surface, inducing fluorescent activity. In vitro testing showed that hAuNPs hybridize to an exogenous complementary oligonucleotide within a pH range of 4.5-7.4, and that they are stable at reduced pH. LCNV mice received tail-vein injections of AS-VCAM-1 hAuNPs. Hyperspectral imaging revealed the delivery of AS-VCAM-1 hAuNPs to excised choroidal tissues. Fluorescent images of CNV lesions were obtained, presumably in response to the hybridization of AS-hAuNPs to LCNV-induced VCAM-1 mRNA. This is the first demonstration of systemic delivery of hAuNPs to ocular tissues to facilitate mRNA imaging of any target.
Metformin is a first-line drug for the treatment of individuals with type 2 diabetes, yet its precise mechanism of action remains unclear. Metformin exerts its antihyperglycemic action primarily through lowering hepatic glucose production (HGP). This suppression is thought to be mediated through inhibition of mitochondrial respiratory complex I, and thus elevation of 5'-adenosine monophosphate (AMP) levels and the activation of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), though this proposition has been challenged given results in mice lacking hepatic AMPK. Here we report that the AMP-inhibited enzyme fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase-1 (FBP1), a rate-controlling enzyme in gluconeogenesis, functions as a major contributor to the therapeutic action of metformin. We identified a point mutation in FBP1 that renders it insensitive to AMP while sparing regulation by fructose-2,6-bisphosphate (F-2,6-P), and knock-in (KI) of this mutant in mice significantly reduces their response to metformin treatment. We observe this during a metformin tolerance test and in a metformin-euglycemic clamp that we have developed. The antihyperglycemic effect of metformin in high-fat diet-fed diabetic FBP1-KI mice was also significantly blunted compared to wild-type controls. Collectively, we show a new mechanism of action for metformin and provide further evidence that molecular targeting of FBP1 can have antihyperglycemic effects.
Sialic acids are nine carbon sugars ubiquitously found on the surfaces of vertebrate cells and are involved in various immune response-related processes. In humans, at least 58 genes spanning diverse functions, from biosynthesis and activation to recycling and degradation, are involved in sialic acid biology. Because of their role in immunity, sialic acid biology genes have been hypothesized to exhibit elevated rates of evolutionary change. Consistent with this hypothesis, several genes involved in sialic acid biology have experienced higher rates of non-synonymous substitutions in the human lineage than their counterparts in other great apes, perhaps in response to ancient pathogens that infected hominins millions of years ago (paleopathogens). To test whether sialic acid biology genes have also experienced more recent positive selection during the evolution of the modern human lineage, reflecting adaptation to contemporary cosmopolitan or geographically-restricted pathogens, we examined whether their protein-coding regions showed evidence of recent hard and soft selective sweeps. This examination involved the calculation of four measures that quantify changes in allele frequency spectra, extent of population differentiation, and haplotype homozygosity caused by recent hard and soft selective sweeps for 55 sialic acid biology genes using publicly available whole genome sequencing data from 1,668 humans from three ethnic groups. To disentangle evidence for selection from confounding demographic effects, we compared the observed patterns in sialic acid biology genes to simulated sequences of the same length under a model of neutral evolution that takes into account human demographic history. We found that the patterns of genetic variation of most sialic acid biology genes did not significantly deviate from neutral expectations and were not significantly different among genes belonging to different functional categories. Those few sialic acid biology genes that significantly deviated from neutrality either experienced soft sweeps or population-specific hard sweeps. Interestingly, while most hard sweeps occurred on genes involved in sialic acid recognition, most soft sweeps involved genes associated with recycling, degradation and activation, transport, and transfer functions. We propose that the lack of signatures of recent positive selection for the majority of the sialic acid biology genes is consistent with the view that these genes regulate immune responses against ancient rather than contemporary cosmopolitan or geographically restricted pathogens.
Copyright © 2018 Moon et al.
Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated cation (HCN) channels have important functions in controlling neuronal excitability and generating rhythmic oscillatory activity. The role of tetratricopeptide repeat-containing Rab8b-interacting protein (TRIP8b) in regulation of hyperpolarization-activated inward current, I , in the thalamocortical system and its functional relevance for the physiological thalamocortical oscillations were investigated. A significant decrease in I current density, in both thalamocortical relay (TC) and cortical pyramidal neurons was found in TRIP8b-deficient mice (TRIP8b). In addition basal cAMP levels in the brain were found to be decreased while the availability of the fast transient A-type K current, I , in TC neurons was increased. These changes were associated with alterations in intrinsic properties and firing patterns of TC neurons, as well as intrathalamic and thalamocortical network oscillations, revealing a significant increase in slow oscillations in the delta frequency range (0.5-4 Hz) during episodes of active-wakefulness. In addition, absence of TRIP8b suppresses the normal desynchronization response of the EEG during the switch from slow-wave sleep to wakefulness. It is concluded that TRIP8b is necessary for the modulation of physiological thalamocortical oscillations due to its direct effect on HCN channel expression in thalamus and cortex and that mechanisms related to reduced cAMP signaling may contribute to the present findings.
Ribonucleotides are the natural analogs of deoxyribonucleotides, which can be misinserted by DNA polymerases, leading to the most abundant DNA lesions in genomes. During replication, DNA polymerases tolerate patches of ribonucleotides on the parental strands to different extents. The majority of human DNA polymerases have been reported to misinsert ribonucleotides into genomes. However, only PrimPol, DNA polymerase α, telomerase, and the mitochondrial human DNA polymerase (hpol) γ have been shown to tolerate an entire RNA strand. Y-family hpol η is known for translesion synthesis opposite the UV-induced DNA lesion cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer and was recently found to incorporate ribonucleotides into DNA. Here, we report that hpol η is able to bind DNA/DNA, RNA/DNA, and DNA/RNA duplexes with similar affinities. In addition, hpol η, as well as another Y-family DNA polymerase, hpol κ, accommodates RNA as one of the two strands during primer extension, mainly by inserting dNMPs opposite unmodified templates or DNA lesions, such as 8-oxo-2'-deoxyguanosine or cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer, even in the presence of an equal amount of the DNA/DNA substrate. The discovery of this RNA-accommodating ability of hpol η redefines the traditional concept of human DNA polymerases and indicates potential new functions of hpol η .
© 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.