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Articles by P Zhang
Total Records ( 8 ) for P Zhang
  P Zhang , J Chen and Y. Liang
 

There is considerable interest in the interactions of ruthenium (Ru)(II) complexes with DNA as well as the biological impact of the interactions. Here, by using isothermal titration calorimetry, viscosity measurement, and circular dichroism, we investigated the interactions of a new Ru(II) complex, [Ru(dmp)2PMIP]2+{dmp = 2,9-dimethyl-1,10-phenanthroline, PMIP = 2-(4-methylphenyl)imidazo[4,5-f]1,10-phenanthroline}, with calf thymus DNA (CT DNA). The Ru(II) polypyridyl complex and CT DNA formed a tight 1:1 complex with a binding constant of exceeding 106 M–1 and with a binding mode of intercalation. Cell viability experiments indicated that the Ru(II) complex showed significant dose-dependent cytotoxicity to human lung tumor cell line A549. Further flow cytometry experiments showed that the cytotoxic Ru(II) complex induced apoptosis of human lung cancer cell line A549. Our data demonstrated that the Ru(II) polypyridyl complex binds to DNA and thereby induces apoptosis in tumor cells, suggesting that anti-tumor activity of the Ru(II) complex could be related to its interaction with DNA.

  J. L Wang , X Yang , K Xia , Z. M Hu , L Weng , X Jin , H Jiang , P Zhang , L Shen , J Feng Guo , N li , Y. R Li , L. F Lei , J Zhou , J Du , Y. F Zhou , Q Pan , J Wang , R. Q Li and B. S. Tang
 

Autosomal-dominant spinocerebellar ataxias constitute a large, heterogeneous group of progressive neurodegenerative diseases with multiple types. To date, classical genetic studies have revealed 31 distinct genetic forms of spinocerebellar ataxias and identified 19 causative genes. Traditional positional cloning strategies, however, have limitations for finding causative genes of rare Mendelian disorders. Here, we used a combined strategy of exome sequencing and linkage analysis to identify a novel spinocerebellar ataxia causative gene, TGM6. We sequenced the whole exome of four patients in a Chinese four-generation spinocerebellar ataxia family and identified a missense mutation, c.1550T–G transition (L517W), in exon 10 of TGM6. This change is at a highly conserved position, is predicted to have a functional impact, and completely cosegregated with the phenotype. The exome results were validated using linkage analysis. The mutation we identified using exome sequencing was located in the same region (20p13–12.2) as that identified by linkage analysis, which cross-validated TGM6 as the causative spinocerebellar ataxia gene in this family. We also showed that the causative gene could be mapped by a combined method of linkage analysis and sequencing of one sample from the family. We further confirmed our finding by identifying another missense mutation c.980A–G transition (D327G) in exon seven of TGM6 in an additional spinocerebellar ataxia family, which also cosegregated with the phenotype. Both mutations were absent in 500 normal unaffected individuals of matched geographical ancestry. The finding of TGM6 as a novel causative gene of spinocerebellar ataxia illustrates whole-exome sequencing of affected individuals from one family as an effective and cost efficient method for mapping genes of rare Mendelian disorders and the use of linkage analysis and exome sequencing for further improving efficiency.

  X Hu , X Xu , G Zhu , D Atzler , M Kimoto , J Chen , E Schwedhelm , N Luneburg , R. H Boger , P Zhang and Y. Chen
 

Background— Asymmetrical methylarginines inhibit NO synthase activity and thereby decrease NO production. Dimethylarginine dimethylaminohydrolase 1 (DDAH1) degrades asymmetrical methylarginines. We previously demonstrated that in the heart DDAH1 is predominantly expressed in vascular endothelial cells. Because an earlier study showed that mice with global DDAH1 deficiency experienced embryonic lethality, we speculated that a mouse strain with selective vascular endothelial DDAH1 deficiency (endo-DDAH1–/–) would largely abolish tissue DDAH1 expression in many tissues but possibly avoid embryonic lethality.

Methods and Results— By using the LoxP/Cre approach, we generated the endo-DDAH1–/– mice. The endo-DDAH1–/– mice had no apparent defect in growth or development compared with wild-type littermates. DDAH1 expression was greatly reduced in kidney, lung, brain, and liver, indicating that in these organs DDAH1 is distributed mainly in vascular endothelial cells. The endo-DDAH1–/– mice showed a significant increase of asymmetric dimethylarginine concentration in plasma (1.41 µmol/L in the endo-DDAH1–/– versus 0.69 µmol/L in the control mice), kidney, lung, and liver, which was associated with significantly increased systolic blood pressure (132 mm Hg versus 113 mm Hg in wild-type). The endo-DDAH1–/– mice also exhibited significantly attenuated acetylcholine-induced NO production and vessel relaxation in isolated aortic rings.

Conclusions— Our study demonstrates that DDAH1 is highly expressed in vascular endothelium and that endothelial DDAH1 plays an important role in regulating blood pressure. In the context that asymmetric methylarginines are broadly produced by many type of cells, the strong DDAH1 expression in vascular endothelium demonstrates for the first time that vascular endothelium can be an important site to actively dispose of toxic biochemical molecules produced by other types of cells.

  J Qian , X Ren , X Wang , P Zhang , W. K Jones , J. D Molkentin , G. C Fan and E. G. Kranias
 

Rationale: The levels of a small heat shock protein (Hsp)20 and its phosphorylation are increased on ischemic insults, and overexpression of Hsp20 protects the heart against ischemia/reperfusion injury. However, the mechanism underlying cardioprotection of Hsp20 and especially the role of its phosphorylation in regulating ischemia/reperfusion–induced autophagy, apoptosis, and necrosis remain to be clarified.

Objective: Herein, we generated a cardiac-specific overexpression model, carrying nonphosphorylatable Hsp20, where serine 16 was substituted with alanine (Hsp20S16A). By subjecting this model to ischemia/reperfusion, we addressed whether: (1) the cardioprotective effects of Hsp20 are associated with serine 16 phosphorylation; (2) blockade of Hsp20 phosphorylation influences the balance between autophagy and cell death; and (3) the aggregation pattern of Hsp20 is altered by its phosphorylation.

Methods and Results: Our results demonstrated that Hsp20S16A hearts were more sensitive to ischemia/reperfusion injury, evidenced by lower recovery of contractile function and increased necrosis and apoptosis, compared with non-TG hearts. Interestingly, autophagy was activated in non-TG hearts but significantly inhibited in Hsp20S16A hearts following ischemia/reperfusion. Accordingly, pretreatment of Hsp20S16A hearts with rapamycin, an activator of autophagy, resulted in improvement of functional recovery, compared with saline-treated Hsp20S16A hearts. Furthermore, on ischemia/reperfusion, the oligomerization pattern of Hsp20 appeared to shift to higher aggregates in Hsp20S16A hearts.

Conclusions: Collectively, these data indicate that blockade of Ser16-Hsp20 phosphorylation attenuates the cardioprotective effects of Hsp20 against ischemia/reperfusion injury, which may be attributable to suppressed autophagy and increased cell death. Therefore, phosphorylation of Hsp20 at serine 16 may represent a potential therapeutic target in ischemic heart disease.

  J Li , H Huang , L Sun , M Yang , C Pan , W Chen , D Wu , Z Lin , C Zeng , Y Yao , P Zhang and E. Song
 

Purpose: We aim to examine miR-21 expression in tongue squamous cell carcinomas (TSCC) and correlate it with patient clinical status, and to investigate its contribution to TSCC cell growth, apoptosis, and tumorigenesis.

Experimental Design: MicroRNA profiling was done in 10 cases of TSCC with microarray. MiR-21 overexpression was quantitated with quantitative reverse transcription-PCR in 103 patients, and correlated to the pathoclinical status of the patients. Immunohistochemistry was used to examine the expression of TPM1 and PTEN, and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase–mediated dUTP labeling to evaluate apoptosis. Moreover, miR-21 antisense oligonucleotide (ASO) was transfected in SCC-15 and CAL27 cell lines, and tumor cell growth was determined by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide, adherent colony formation, and soft agar assay, whereas apoptosis was determined by Annexin V assay, cytochrome c release, and caspase 3 assay. Tumorigenesis was evaluated by xenografting SCC-15 cells in nude mice.

Results: MiR-21 is overexpressed in TSCC relative to adjacent normal tissues. The level of miR-21 is reversely correlated with TPM1 and PTEN expression and apoptosis of cancer cells. Multivariate analysis showed that miR-21 expression is an independent prognostic factor indicating poor survival. Inhibiting miR-21 with ASO in TSCC cell lines reduces survival and anchorage-independent growth, and induces apoptosis in TSCC cell lines. Simultaneous silencing of TPM1 with siRNA only partially recapitulates the effect of miR-21 ASO. Furthermore, repeated injection of miR-21 ASO suppresses tumor formation in nude mice by reducing cell proliferation and inducing apoptosis.

Conclusions: miR-21 is an independent prognostic indicator for TSCC, and may play a role in TSCC development by inhibiting cancer cell apoptosis partly via TPM1 silencing.

  K. F Chan , P Zhang and Z. Song
 

The Golgi CMP-sialic acid transporter (CST) is a type III transmembrane protein with 10 transmembrane domains that are linked by eight hydrophilic loops. To investigate the function of these hydrophilic loops, the green fluorescent protein (GFP) was inserted into each loop of the transporter. Expression and localization of the resulting CST-GFP fusion proteins were confirmed by analyzing the fluorescence of GFP. The transport activity of the CST-GFP proteins was analyzed by a previously described erythropoietin/isoelectric focusing assay in CST-deficient MAR-11 cells. Interruption of the second and fourth lumenal loops and the fourth cytosolic loop of CST with GFP resulted in complete or partial loss of transport activity. Regions in these loops that play crucial roles in CST’s activity were identified by Gly substitutions. Single amino acid substitution experiments revealed that Lys272 of the fourth loop on the cytosolic side of CST is essential for transport activity. Mutation of the conserved Lys residue (Lys297) in the UDP-galactose transporter (UGT) also resulted in a complete loss of its activity. Point mutations of highly conserved amino acid residues in the loop regions identified Leu136 of CST as essential for its activity. However, mutation of the conserved Leu residue in UGT (Leu160) did not affect the transport activity of UGT. Finally, mutation of Leu224 in UGT completely inactivated the activity of UGT, although mutation of its conserved counterpart in CST, Leu199, did not have any effect on CST. This study provides a structure–function analysis of the loop regions in CST and UGT.

  P Zhang , C Yang and R. J. Delay
 

Located at the anterior portion of the nose, the paired vomeronasal organs (VNO) detect odors and pheromones. In vomeronasal sensory neurons (VSNs) odor responses are mainly mediated by phospholipase C (PLC), stimulation of which elevates diacylglycerol (DAG). DAG activates a transient receptor potential channel (TRPC2) leading to cell depolarization. In this study, we used a natural stimulus, urine, to elicit odor responses in VSNs and found urine responses persisted in TRPC2–/– mice, suggesting the existence of a TRPC2-independent signal transduction pathway. Using perforated patch-clamp recordings on isolated VSNs from wild-type (WT) and TRPC2–/– mice, we found a PLC inhibitor blocked urine responses from all VSNs. Furthermore, urine responses were reduced by blocking DAG lipase, an enzyme that produces arachidonic acid (AA), in WT mice and abolished in TRPC2–/– mice. Consistently, direct stimulation with AA activated an inward current that was independent of TRPC2 channels but required bath Ca2+ and was blocked by Cd2+. With the use of inside-out patches from TRPC2–/– VSNs, we show that AA activated a channel that also required Ca2+. Together, these data from WT and TRPC2–/– mice suggest that both DAG and its metabolite, AA, mediate excitatory odor responses in VSNs, by activating two types of channels, a TRPC2 and a separate Ca2+-permeable channel.

  Y. C Wang , X. B Hu , F He , F Feng , L Wang , W Li , P Zhang , D Li , Z. S Jia , Y. M Liang and H. Han
 

Dendritic cells (DCs) are professional antigen presenting cells to initiate immune response against pathogens, but mechanisms controlling the maturation of DCs are unclear. Here we report that, in the absence of recombination signal binding protein-J (RBP-J, the transcription factor mediating Notch signaling), lipopolysaccharide-stimulated monocyte-derived DCs are arrested at a developmental stage with few dendrites, low major histocompatibility complex II (MHC II) expression, and reduced motility and antigen presentation ability. RBP-J null DCs had lower expression of CXCR4. Transduction with a CXCR4-expressing lentivirus rescued developmental arrest of RBP-J-deficient DCs. Activation of Notch signaling in DCs up-regulated CXCR4 expression and increased the outgrowth of dendrites and the expression of MHC II. These effects were abrogated by a CXCR4 inhibitor. Therefore, Notch signaling is essential for DCs to transit from a dendritelowMHC IIlow immature state into a dendritehighMHC IIhigh mature state, during the lipopolysaccharide-induced DC maturation, most likely through the up-regulation of CXCR4.

 
 
 
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