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Articles by A Fox
Total Records ( 2 ) for A Fox
  R Bhandare , J Schug , J Le Lay , A Fox , O Smirnova , C Liu , A Naji and K. H. Kaestner

The global diabetes epidemic poses a major challenge. Epigenetic events contribute to the etiology of diabetes; however, the lack of epigenomic analysis has limited the elucidation of the mechanistic basis for this link. To determine the epigenetic architecture of human pancreatic islets we mapped the genome-wide locations of four histone marks: three associated with gene activation—H3K4me1, H3K4me2, and H3K4me3—and one associated with gene repression, H3K27me3. Interestingly, the promoters of the highly transcribed insulin and glucagon genes are occupied only sparsely by H3K4me2 and H3K4me3. Globally, we identified important relationships between promoter structure, histone modification, and gene expression. We demonstrated co-occurrences of histone modifications including bivalent marks in mature islets. Furthermore, we found a set of promoters that is differentially modified between islets and other cell types. We also use our histone marks to determine which of the known diabetes-associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms are likely to be part of regulatory elements. Our global map of histone marks will serve as an important resource for understanding the epigenetic basis of type 2 diabetes.

  D Souvannakitti , G. K Kumar , A Fox and N. R. Prabhakar

The objective of the present study was to examine the effects of intermittent hypoxia (IH) and sustained hypoxia (SH) on hypoxia-evoked catecholamine (CA) secretion from chromaffin cells in neonatal rats and assess the underlying mechanism(s). Experiments were performed on rat pups exposed to either IH (15-s hypoxia/5-min normoxia; 8 h/day) or SH (hypobaric hypoxia, 0.4 atm) or normoxia (controls) from P0 to P5. IH treatment facilitated hypoxia-evoked CA secretion and elevations in the intracellular calcium ion concentration ([Ca2+]i) and these responses were attenuated, but not abolished, by treatments designed to eliminate Ca2+ flux into cells (Ca2+-free medium or Cd2+), indicating that intracellular Ca2+ stores were augmented by IH. Norepinephrine (NE) and epinephrine (E) levels of adrenal medullae were elevated in IH-treated pups. IH treatment increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in adrenal medullae and antioxidant treatment prevented IH-induced facilitation of CA secretion, elevations in [Ca2+]i by hypoxia, and the up-regulation of NE and E. The effects of neonatal IH treatment on hypoxia-induced CA secretion and elevation in [Ca2+]i, CA, and ROS levels persisted in rats reared under normoxia for >30 days. In striking contrast, chromaffin cells from SH-treated animals exhibited attenuated hypoxia-evoked CA secretion. In SH-treated cells hypoxia-evoked elevations in [Ca2+]i, NE and E contents, and ROS levels were comparable with controls. These observations demonstrate that: 1) neonatal IH and SH evoke opposite effects on hypoxia-evoked CA secretion from chromaffin cells, 2) ROS signaling mediates the faciltatory effects of IH, and 3) the effects of neonatal IH on chromaffin cells persist into adult life.

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