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Biological responses in rats exposed to mainstream smoke from a heated cigarette compared to a conventional reference cigarette. - Inhalation toxicology
The heated cigarette (HC) generates mainstream smoke by vaporizing the components of the tobacco rod using a carbon heat source at the cigarette tip. Mainstream smoke of HC contains markedly less chemical constituents compared to combusted cigarettes. Mainstream smoke from HC was generated under Health Canada Intense regimen and its biological effects were compared to those of Reference (3R4F) cigarettes, using nose-only 5-week and 13-week inhalation studies. In the 13-week study, SD rats were necropsied following exposure to mainstream smoke from each cigarette at 200, 600 or 1000â€‰Âµg wet total particulate matter/L for 1â€‰h/day, 7 days/week or following a 13-week recovery period. Histopathological changes in the respiratory tract were significantly lesser in HC groups; e.g. respiratory epithelial hyperplasia in the nasal cavity and accumulation of pigmented macrophages in alveoli. After a 13-week recovery, the lesions were completely or partially regressed, except for accumulation of pigmented macrophages in alveoli, in both HC and 3R4F groups. In the 5-week study, SD rats were necropsied following exposure to mainstream smoke of either cigarette at 600 or 1000â€‰Âµg/L for 1â€‰h, two times/day (with 30â€‰min interval), 7 days/week or following a 4-week recovery period. Bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) analysis of neutrophil percentages and enzyme levels like Î³-GT, ALP and LDH indicated that pulmonary inflammation was significantly less in HC groups compared to 3R4F groups. In conclusion, HC demonstrated significantly lower biological effects compared to 3R4F, based on the BALF parameters and histopathology.
Molecular disorganization of axons adjacent to human lacunar infarcts. - Brain : a journal of neurology
Cerebral microvascular disease predominantly affects brain white matter and deep grey matter, resulting in ischaemic damage that ranges from lacunar infarcts to white matter hyperintensities seen on magnetic resonance imaging. These lesions are common and result in both clinical stroke syndromes and accumulate over time, resulting in cognitive deficits and dementia. Magnetic resonance imaging studies suggest that these lesions progress over time, accumulate adjacent to prior lesions and have a penumbral region susceptible to further injury. The pathological correlates of this adjacent injury in surviving myelinated axons have not been previously defined. In this study, we sought to determine the molecular organization of axons in tissue adjacent to lacunar infarcts and in the regions surrounding microinfarcts, by determining critical elements in axonal function: the morphology and length of node of Ranvier segments and adjacent paranodal segments. We examined post-mortem brain tissue from six patients with lacunar infarcts and tissue from two patients with autosomal dominant retinal vasculopathy and cerebral leukoencephalopathy (previously known as hereditary endotheliopathy with retinopathy, nephropathy and stroke) who accumulate progressive white matter ischaemic lesions in the form of lacunar and microinfarcts. In axons adjacent to lacunar infarcts yet extending up to 150% of the infarct diameter away, both nodal and paranodal length increase by âˆ¼20% and 80%, respectively, reflecting a loss of normal cell-cell adhesion and signalling between axons and oligodendrocytes. Using premorbid magnetic resonance images, brain regions from patients with retinal vasculopathy and cerebral leukoencephalopathy that harboured periventricular white matter hyperintensities were selected and the molecular organization of axons was determined within these regions. As in regions adjacent to lacunar infarcts, nodal and paranodal length in white matter of these patients is increased. Myelin basic protein and neurofilament immunolabelling demonstrates that axons in these adjacent regions have preserved axonal cytoskeleton organization and are generally myelinated. This indicates that the loss of normal axonal microdomain architecture results from disrupted axoglial signalling in white matter adjacent to lacunar and microinfarcts. The loss of the normal molecular organization of nodes and paranodes is associated with axonal degeneration and may lead to impaired conduction velocity across surviving axons after stroke. These findings demonstrate that the degree of white matter injury associated with cerebral microvascular disease extends well beyond what can be identified using imaging techniques and that an improved understanding of the neurobiology in these regions can drive new therapeutic strategies for this disease entity.Â© The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Up-regulation of thrombospondin-2 in Akt1-null mice contributes to compromised tissue repair due to abnormalities in fibroblast function. - The Journal of biological chemistry
Vascular remodeling is essential for tissue repair and is regulated by multiple factors, including thrombospondin-2 (TSP2) and hypoxia/VEGF-induced activation of Akt. In contrast to TSP2 knock-out (KO) mice, Akt1 KO mice have elevated TSP2 expression and delayed tissue repair. To investigate the contribution of increased TSP2 to Akt1 KO mice phenotypes, we generated Akt1/TSP2 double KO (DKO) mice. Full-thickness excisional wounds in DKO mice healed at an accelerated rate when compared with Akt1 KO mice. Isolated dermal Akt1 KO fibroblasts expressed increased TSP2 and displayed altered morphology and defects in migration and adhesion. These defects were rescued in DKO fibroblasts or after TSP2 knockdown. Conversely, the addition of exogenous TSP2 to WT cells induced cell morphology and migration rates that were similar to those of Akt1 KO cells. Akt1 KO fibroblasts displayed reduced adhesion to fibronectin with manganese stimulation when compared with WT and DKO cells, revealing an Akt1-dependent role for TSP2 in regulating integrin-mediated adhesions; however, this effect was not due to changes in Î²1 integrin surface expression or activation. Consistent with these results, Akt1 KO fibroblasts displayed reduced Rac1 activation that was dependent upon expression of TSP2 and could be rescued by a constitutively active Rac mutant. Our observations show that repression of TSP2 expression is a critical aspect of Akt1 function in tissue repair.Â© 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.
Endothelial Akt1 mediates angiogenesis by phosphorylating multiple angiogenic substrates. - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
The PI3K/Akt pathway is necessary for several key endothelial cell (EC) functions, including cell growth, migration, survival, and vascular tone. However, existing literature supports the idea that Akt can be either pro- or antiangiogenic, possibly due to compensation by multiple isoforms in the EC when a single isoform is deleted. Thus, biochemical, genetic, and proteomic studies were conducted to examine isoform-substrate specificity for Akt1 vs. Akt2. In vitro, Akt1 preferentially phosphorylates endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and promotes NO release, whereas nonphysiological overexpression of Akt2 can bypass the loss of Akt1. Conditional deletion of Akt1 in the EC, in the absence or presence of Akt2, retards retinal angiogenesis, implying that Akt1 exerts a nonredundant function during physiological angiogenesis. Finally, proteomic analysis of Akt substrates isolated from Akt1- or Akt2-deficient ECs documents that phosphorylation of multiple Akt substrates regulating angiogenic signaling is reduced in Akt1-deficient, but not Akt2-deficient, ECs, including eNOS and Forkhead box proteins. Therefore, Akt1 promotes angiogenesis largely due to phosphorylation and regulation of important downstream effectors that promote aspects of angiogenic signaling.
Comparison of dermal tumor promotion activity of cigarette smoke condensate from prototype (heated) cigarette and reference (combusted) cigarette in SENCAR mice. - Food and chemical toxicology : an international journal published for the British Industrial Biological Research Association
Test cigarette (prototype "heated" cigarette) was evaluated on its dermal tumor promotion activity in SENCAR mice relative to conventional 3R4F cigarette. Mainstream cigarette smoke was generated under the modified Health Canada Intensive Regimen, and smoke condensate (CSCs) were collected using cold traps and extracted with acetone. Female mice received a topical application of 7,12-dimehtylbenz(a)anthracene (DMBA) as the tumor initiator on the back skin during Week 1. Subsequently, CSC was repeatedly applied as the tumor promoter at 5 doses, up to 30 mg tar/application, three times per week for 30 weeks. Test groups showed a clearly longer latency at lower doses (â©½15 mg), but the difference was less clear at higher doses (â©¾22.5 mg), while mortalities were not affected throughout the study. Test groups also had consistently lower incidence and multiplicity of neoplasms, as well as lower incidences of non-neoplastic changes (e.g., inflammations and squamous epithelial hyperplasia on the site of application). The group without DMBA initiation did not induce any neoplasm but the respective Reference group showed an increase in tumorigenicity. In conclusion, the study demonstrated significant reduction in dermal irritancy and tumorigenicity of Test CSC compared to Reference CSC.Copyright Â© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Dynamin 2 regulation of integrin endocytosis, but not VEGF signaling, is crucial for developmental angiogenesis. - Development (Cambridge, England)
Here we show that dynamin 2 (Dnm2) is essential for angiogenesis in vitro and in vivo. In cultured endothelial cells lacking Dnm2, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) signaling and receptor levels are augmented whereas cell migration and morphogenesis are impaired. Mechanistically, the loss of Dnm2 increases focal adhesion size and the surface levels of multiple integrins and reduces the activation state of Î²1 integrin. In vivo, the constitutive or inducible loss of Dnm2 in endothelium impairs branching morphogenesis and promotes the accumulation of Î²1 integrin at sites of failed angiogenic sprouting. Collectively, our data show that Dnm2 uncouples VEGF signaling from function and coordinates the endocytic turnover of integrins in a manner that is crucially important for angiogenesis in vitro and in vivo.
Comparison of biological responses in rats under various cigarette smoke exposure conditions. - Journal of toxicologic pathology
A variety of exposure regimens of cigarette smoke have been used in animal models of lung diseases. In this study, we compared biological responses of smoke exposure in rats, using different smoke concentrations (wet total particulate matter [WTPM]), daily exposure durations, and total days of exposure. As a range-finding acute study, we first compared pulmonary responses between SD and F344 strains after a single nose-only exposure to mainstream cigarette smoke or LPS. Secondly, F344 rats were exposed to cigarette smoke for 2 or 13 weeks under the comparable daily exposure dose (WTPM concentration x daily exposure duration; according to Haber's rule) but at a different WTPM concentration or daily exposure duration. Blood carboxylhemoglobin was increased linearly to the WTPM concentration, while urinary nicotine plus cotinine value was higher for the longer daily exposure than the corresponding shorter exposure groups. Gamma glutamyl transferase activity in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) was increased dose dependently after 2 and 13 weeks of cigarette smoke exposure, while the neutrophil content in BALF was not increased notably. Smoke-exposed groups showed reduced body weight gain and increased relative lung and heart weights. While BALF parameters and the relative lung weights suggest pulmonary responses, histopathological examination showed epithelial lesions mainly in the upper respiratory organs (nose and larynx). Collectively, the results indicate that, under the employed study design, the equivalent daily exposure dose (exposure concentration x duration) induces equivalent pulmonary responses in rats.
Impaired transcriptional response of the murine heart to cigarette smoke in the setting of high fat diet and obesity. - Chemical research in toxicology
Smoking and obesity are each well-established risk factors for cardiovascular heart disease, which together impose earlier onset and greater severity of disease. To identify early signaling events in the response of the heart to cigarette smoke exposure within the setting of obesity, we exposed normal weight and high fat diet-induced obese (DIO) C57BL/6 mice to repeated inhaled doses of mainstream (MS) or sidestream (SS) cigarette smoke administered over a two week period, monitoring effects on both cardiac and pulmonary transcriptomes. MS smoke (250 Î¼g wet total particulate matter (WTPM)/L, 5 h/day) exposures elicited robust cellular and molecular inflammatory responses in the lung with 1466 differentially expressed pulmonary genes (p < 0.01) in normal weight animals and a much-attenuated response (463 genes) in the hearts of the same animals. In contrast, exposures to SS smoke (85 Î¼g WTPM/L) with a CO concentration equivalent to that of MS smoke (~250 CO ppm) induced a weak pulmonary response (328 genes) but an extensive cardiac response (1590 genes). SS smoke and to a lesser extent MS smoke preferentially elicited hypoxia- and stress-responsive genes as well as genes predicting early changes of vascular smooth muscle and endothelium, precursors of cardiovascular disease. The most sensitive smoke-induced cardiac transcriptional changes of normal weight mice were largely absent in DIO mice after smoke exposure, while genes involved in fatty acid utilization were unaffected. At the same time, smoke exposure suppressed multiple proteome maintenance genes induced in the hearts of DIO mice. Together, these results underscore the sensitivity of the heart to SS smoke and reveal adaptive responses in healthy individuals that are absent in the setting of high fat diet and obesity.
Diet-induced obesity reprograms the inflammatory response of the murine lung to inhaled endotoxin. - Toxicology and applied pharmacology
The co-occurrence of environmental factors is common in complex human diseases and, as such, understanding the molecular responses involved is essential to determine risk and susceptibility to disease. We have investigated the key biological pathways that define susceptibility for pulmonary infection during obesity in diet-induced obese (DIO) and regular weight (RW) C57BL/6 mice exposed to inhaled lipopolysaccharide (LPS). LPS induced a strong inflammatory response in all mice as indicated by elevated cell counts of macrophages and neutrophils and levels of proinflammatory cytokines (MDC, MIP-1Î³, IL-12, RANTES) in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. Additionally, DIO mice exhibited 50% greater macrophage cell counts, but decreased levels of the cytokines, IL-6, TARC, TNF-Î±, and VEGF relative to RW mice. Microarray analysis of lung tissue showed over half of the LPS-induced expression in DIO mice consisted of genes unique for obese mice, suggesting that obesity reprograms how the lung responds to subsequent insult. In particular, we found that obese animals exposed to LPS have gene signatures showing increased inflammatory and oxidative stress response and decreased antioxidant capacity compared with RW. Because signaling pathways for these responses can be common to various sources of environmentally induced lung damage, we further identified biomarkers that are indicative of specific toxicant exposure by comparing gene signatures after LPS exposure to those from a parallel study with cigarette smoke. These data show obesity may increase sensitivity to further insult and that co-occurrence of environmental stressors result in complex biosignatures that are not predicted from analysis of individual exposures.Copyright Â© 2012. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Endothelial cell expression of haemoglobin Î± regulates nitric oxide signalling. - Nature
Models of unregulated nitric oxide (NO) diffusion do not consistently account for the biochemistry of NO synthase (NOS)-dependent signalling in many cell systems. For example, endothelial NOS controls blood pressure, blood flow and oxygen delivery through its effect on vascular smooth muscle tone, but the regulation of these processes is not adequately explained by simple NO diffusion from endothelium to smooth muscle. Here we report a new model for the regulation of NO signalling by demonstrating that haemoglobin (Hb) Î± (encoded by the HBA1 and HBA2 genes in humans) is expressed in human and mouse arterial endothelial cells and enriched at the myoendothelial junction, where it regulates the effects of NO on vascular reactivity. Notably, this function is unique to Hb Î± and is abrogated by its genetic depletion. Mechanistically, endothelial Hb Î± haem iron in the Fe(3+) state permits NO signalling, and this signalling is shut off when Hb Î± is reduced to the Fe(2+) state by endothelial cytochrome b5 reductase 3 (CYB5R3, also known as diaphorase 1). Genetic and pharmacological inhibition of CYB5R3 increases NO bioactivity in small arteries. These data reveal a new mechanism by which the regulation of the intracellular Hb Î± oxidation state controls NOS signalling in non-erythroid cells. This model may be relevant to haem-containing globins in a broad range of NOS-containing somatic cells.
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