bims-nenemi Biomed News
on Neuroinflammation, neurodegeneration and mitochondria
Issue of 2021‒09‒26
twenty-two papers selected by
Marco Tigano
Thomas Jefferson University

  1. EMBO J. 2021 Sep 20. e108648
      So-called ρ0 cells lack mitochondrial DNA and are therefore incapable of aerobic ATP synthesis. How cells adapt to survive ablation of oxidative phosphorylation remains poorly understood. Complexome profiling analysis of ρ0 cells covered 1,002 mitochondrial proteins and revealed changes in abundance and organization of numerous multiprotein complexes including previously not described assemblies. Beyond multiple subassemblies of complexes that would normally contain components encoded by mitochondrial DNA, we observed widespread reorganization of the complexome. This included distinct changes in the expression pattern of adenine nucleotide carrier isoforms, other mitochondrial transporters, and components of the protein import machinery. Remarkably, ablation of mitochondrial DNA hardly affected the complexes organizing cristae junctions indicating that the altered cristae morphology in ρ0 mitochondria predominantly resulted from the loss of complex V dimers required to impose narrow curvatures to the inner membrane. Our data provide a comprehensive resource for in-depth analysis of remodeling of the mitochondrial complexome in response to respiratory deficiency.
    Keywords:  OXPHOS; complexome profiling; mitochondria; mtDNA; rho0 cells
  2. J Mol Biol. 2021 Sep 16. pii: S0022-2836(21)00480-0. [Epub ahead of print] 167247
      Signaling initiated by type I interferon (IFN) results in the induction of hundreds of IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs). The type I IFN response is important for antiviral restriction, but aberrant activation of this response can lead to inflammation and autoimmunity. Regulation of this response is incompletely understood. We previously reported that the mRNA modification m6A and its deposition enzymes, METTL3 and METTL14 (METTL3/14), promote the type I IFN response by directly modifying the mRNA of a subset of ISGs to enhance their translation. Here, we determined the role of the RNA demethylase fat mass and obesity-associated protein (FTO) in the type I IFN response. FTO, which can remove either m6A or cap-adjacent m6Am RNA modifications, has previously been associated with obesity and body mass index, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and inflammation. We found that FTO suppresses the transcription of a distinct set of ISGs, including many known pro-inflammatory genes, and that this regulation requires its catalytic activity but is not through the actions of FTO on m6Am. Interestingly, depletion of FTO led to activation of the transcription factor STAT3, whose role in the type I IFN response is not well understood. This activation of STAT3 increased the expression of a subset of ISGs. Importantly, this increased ISG induction resulting from FTO depletion was partially ablated by depletion of STAT3. Together, these results reveal that FTO negatively regulates STAT3-mediated signaling that induces proinflammatory ISGs during the IFN response, highlighting an important role for FTO in suppression of inflammatory genes.
    Keywords:  Fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO); Inflammation; Interferon (IFN); Interferon-stimulated gene (ISG); N6-methyladenosine (m(6)A)
  3. Cell Death Differ. 2021 Sep 20.
      Mammalian innate immune response to virus infection is meditated by many cell-intrinsic pathways. RNA viruses, such as Sendai virus, which replicate in the cytoplasm, trigger the RIG-I-like receptor pathway, which activates the transcription factor, IRF3. Activated IRF3 translocates to the nucleus and induces transcription of the genes which encode interferons, the major antiviral cytokines. Interestingly, IRF3 activates another interferon-independent antiviral pathway, called RIG-I induced pathway of apoptosis (RIPA). For activating RIPA, IRF3 translocates from the cytoplasm to mitochondria. RIPA requires linear polyubiquitination of IRF3 by the enzyme complex, LUBAC; ubiquitinated IRF3 binds to Bax and translocates it to mitochondria causing the release of Cytochrome C, activation of caspases and apoptosis of the infected cell. Here, we report that Otulin, the deubiquitinase that removes linear polyubiquitin chains, inhibits RIPA by deubiquitinating IRF3. Ablation of Otulin expression enhanced RIPA and its overexpression inhibited RIPA. In virus-infected cells, to overcome Otulin-mediated inhibition, RIPA actively degrades Otulin. This degradation required sequential actions of RIPA-activated Caspase 3 and proteasomes. Caspase 3 cleaved Otulin at D31; the D31A mutant was not cleaved at all. The caspase-cleaved fragment was totally degraded by proteasomes, which was preceded by its K48-linked ubiquitination. Mass spectrometric analysis of Otulin identified K64 and K197 as the ubiquitinated residues. Otulin interacted with LUBAC after virus infection and the E3-ubiquitin ligase, HOIP, a component of LUBAC, ubiquitinated Otulin to trigger its proteasome-mediated degradation. To assess the impact of Otulin degradation on RIPA-mediated antiviral action, we expressed, in Otulin-ablated cells, a non-degradable mutant of Otulin, in which D31, K64 and K197 had been mutated. The cells expressing the Otulin mutant were less susceptible to virus-induced apoptosis, because RIPA was less active, and consequently virus replication was more robust. Thus, our study has revealed an important positive feedback loop of RIPA.
  4. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2021 ;9 738932
      Autophagy, an essential biological process that affects immunity, is a powerful tool that host cells can use to defend against infections caused by pathogenic microorganisms. Autophagy can not only initiate innate immune responses but also degrade the cellular components that provide the conditions for removing the invaders. However, hyperactivated or inhibited autophagy leads to mitochondrial dysfunction, which is harmful to the host itself and is involved in many types of diseases. Mitochondria perform the functions of biological oxidation and energy exchange. In addition, mitochondrial functions are closely related to cell death, oxygen radical formation, and disease. Accumulation of mitochondrial metabolites affects survival of intracellular pathogens. In this mini-review, we focus on the crosstalk between autophagy and mitochondrial homeostasis during infection.
    Keywords:  autophagy; dual role; homeostasis; mitochondria; pathogen infection
  5. Eur J Neurosci. 2021 Sep 18.
      Oxidative DNA damage induces changes in the neuronal cell cycle and activates a DNA damage response to promote repair, but these processes may be altered under a chronic oxidative environment, leading to the accumulation of unrepaired DNA damage and continued activation of a DNA damage response. Failure to repair DNA damage can lead to apoptosis or senescence, which is characterized by a permanent cell-cycle arrest. Increased oxidative stress and accumulation of oxidative DNA damage are features of brain ageing and neurodegeneration but the effects of persistent DNA damage in neurons are not well-characterized. We developed a model of persistent oxidative DNA damage in immortalized post-mitotic neurons in vitro by exposing them to a sub-lethal concentration of hydrogen peroxide following a "double stress" protocol, and performed a detailed characterization of the neuronal transcriptome using microarray analysis. Persistent DNA damage significantly altered the expression of genes involved in cell cycle regulation, DNA damage response and repair mechanisms, and mitochondrial function, suggesting an active DDR response to replication stress and alterations in mitochondrial electron transport chain. qPCR and functional validation experiments confirmed hyperactivation of mitochondrial Complex I in response to persistent DNA damage. These changes in response to persistent oxidative DNA damage may lead to further oxidative stress, contributing to neuronal dysfunction and ultimately neurodegeneration.
    Keywords:  DNA damage response; cell cycle re-entry; mitochondrial complex I; oxidative stress; post-mitotic
  6. Mol Cell. 2021 Sep 16. pii: S1097-2765(21)00688-2. [Epub ahead of print]81(18): 3786-3802.e13
      Amino acids are essential building blocks of life. However, increasing evidence suggests that elevated amino acids cause cellular toxicity associated with numerous metabolic disorders. How cells cope with elevated amino acids remains poorly understood. Here, we show that a previously identified cellular structure, the mitochondrial-derived compartment (MDC), functions to protect cells from amino acid stress. In response to amino acid elevation, MDCs are generated from mitochondria, where they selectively sequester and deplete SLC25A nutrient carriers and their associated import receptor Tom70 from the organelle. Generation of MDCs promotes amino acid catabolism, and their formation occurs simultaneously with transporter removal at the plasma membrane via the multivesicular body (MVB) pathway. The combined loss of vacuolar amino acid storage, MVBs, and MDCs renders cells sensitive to high amino acid stress. Thus, we propose that MDCs operate as part of a coordinated cell network that facilitates amino acid homeostasis through post-translational nutrient transporter remodeling.
    Keywords:  MDC; Tom70; amino acid; lysosome; mitochondria; nutrient carrier; vacuole
  7. Nat Immunol. 2021 Sep 23.
      Blind mole rats (BMRs) are small rodents, characterized by an exceptionally long lifespan (>21 years) and resistance to both spontaneous and induced tumorigenesis. Here we report that cancer resistance in the BMR is mediated by retrotransposable elements (RTEs). Cells and tissues of BMRs express very low levels of DNA methyltransferase 1. Following cell hyperplasia, the BMR genome DNA loses methylation, resulting in the activation of RTEs. Upregulated RTEs form cytoplasmic RNA-DNA hybrids, which activate the cGAS-STING pathway to induce cell death. Although this mechanism is enhanced in the BMR, we show that it functions in mice and humans. We propose that RTEs were co-opted to serve as tumor suppressors that monitor cell proliferation and are activated in premalignant cells to trigger cell death via activation of the innate immune response. Activation of RTEs is a double-edged sword, serving as a tumor suppressor but contributing to aging in late life via the induction of sterile inflammation.
  8. Toxicology. 2021 Sep 21. pii: S0300-483X(21)00285-7. [Epub ahead of print] 152963
      As a promising class of bioactive marine pyrrole alkaloids, lamellarins reportedly act on multiple targets to suppress the vitality of various cancer cell lines. Nevertheless, an in-depth understanding of the molecular mechanisms governing their cytotoxicity is still in demand. Here we report that while activating intrinsic apoptosis, up to 5 μM of lamellarins and their lactam-containing analogs, azalamellarins, also induced mitochondrial stress responses and autophagy in HeLa cervical cancer cells. Detailed characterization of the mitochondria in the treated cells revealed shifted abundance of the two optic atrophy protein 1 (Opa1) isoforms, disturbed morphology, and dissipated membrane potential, leading to PTEN-induced kinase-1 (PINK1) and microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3-II (LC3-II) accumulation as a molecular signature of mitophagy. Furthermore, an acute treatment with lamellarins also modulated cellular autophagy flux as evidenced by elevated LC3-II levels, LC3 puncta formation, and p62 degradation. Surprisingly, clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-based suppression of autophagy transiently affected the number of apoptotic cells induced by these compounds. Our findings illustrate the potential of these alkaloids for further development into prospective anti-cancer agents.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; lamellarin pyrrole alkaloids; mitochondrial apoptosis; mitochondrial quality control; mitochondrial stress responses
  9. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2021 Sep 24.
      Ventilation with gases containing enhanced fractions of oxygen is the cornerstone of therapy for patients with hypoxia and acute respiratory distress syndrome. Yet, hyperoxia treatment increases free reactive oxygen species (ROS)-induced lung injury, which is reported to disrupt autophagy/mitophagy. Altered extranuclear activity of the catalytic subunit of telomerase, TERT, plays a protective role in ROS injury and autophagy in the systemic and coronary endothelium. We investigated interactions between autophagy/mitophagy and TERT that contribute to mitochondrial dysfunction and pulmonary injury in cultured rat lung microvascular endothelial cells (RLMVECs) exposed in vitro, and rat lungs exposed in vivo to hyperoxia for 48 hours. Hyperoxia induced mitochondrial damage in rat lungs (TOMM20, MTT), which was paralleled by increased markers of inflammation (MPO, IL-1β, TLR9), impaired autophagy signaling (Beclin-1, LC3B-II/1, p62), and decreased the expression of TERT. Mitochondrial specific autophagy (mitophagy) was not altered as hyperoxia increased expression of Pink1 but not Parkin. Hyperoxia-induced mitochondrial damage (TOMM20) was more pronounced in rats that lack the catalytic subunit of TERT, and resulted in a reduction in cellular proliferation rather than cell death in RLMVECs. Activation of TERT or autophagy individually offset mitochondrial damage (MTT). Combined activation/inhibition failed to alleviate hyperoxic-induced mitochondrial damage in vitro, while activation of autophagy in vivo decreased mitochondrial damage (MTT) in both WT and rats lacking TERT. Functionally, activation of either TERT or autophagy preserved transendothelial membrane resistance. Altogether, these observations show that activation of autophagy/mitophagy and/or TERT mitigate loss of mitochondrial function and barrier integrity in hyperoxia.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; Lung; Mitochondria; hyperoxia; p62
  10. Front Physiol. 2021 ;12 729452
      Mutations in human mitochondrial tRNAs (mt-tRNAs) are responsible for several and sometimes severe clinical phenotypes, classified among mitochondrial diseases. In addition, post-transcriptional modifications of mt-tRNAs in correlation with several stress signals can affect their stability similarly to what has been described for their nuclear-encoded counterparts. Many of the perturbations related to either point mutations or aberrant modifications of mt-tRNAs can lead to specific cleavage and the production of mitochondrial tRNA-derived fragments (mt-tRFs). Although mt-tRFs have been detected in several studies, the exact biogenesis steps and biological role remain, to a great extent, unexplored. Several mt-tRFs are produced because of the excessive oxidative stress which predominantly affects mitochondrial DNA integrity. In addition, mt-tRFs have been detected in various diseases with possible detrimental consequences, but also their production may represent a response mechanism to external stimuli, including infections from pathogens. Finally, specific point mutations on mt-tRNAs have been reported to impact the pool of the produced mt-tRFs and there is growing evidence suggesting that mt-tRFs can be exported and act in the cytoplasm. In this review, we summarize current knowledge on mitochondrial tRNA-deriving fragments and their possible contribution to gene expression regulation.
    Keywords:  mitochondria; mitochondrial tRNA-derived fragments; mitochondrial tRNAs; ncRNAs; tRNA-derived fragments
  11. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 09 28. pii: e2108751118. [Epub ahead of print]118(39):
      The bZIP transcription factor ATF6α is a master regulator of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress response genes. In this report, we identify the multifunctional RNA polymerase II transcription factor Elongin as a cofactor for ATF6α-dependent transcription activation. Biochemical studies reveal that Elongin functions at least in part by facilitating ATF6α-dependent loading of Mediator at the promoters and enhancers of ER stress response genes. Depletion of Elongin from cells leads to impaired transcription of ER stress response genes and to defects in the recruitment of Mediator and its CDK8 kinase subunit. Taken together, these findings bring to light a role for Elongin as a loading factor for Mediator during the ER stress response.
    Keywords:  Mediator; RNA polymerase II; enhancer; transcription
  12. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2021 ;9 723108
      Mitochondria are important organelles whose primary function is energy production; in addition, they serve as signaling platforms for apoptosis and antiviral immunity. The central role of mitochondria in oxidative phosphorylation and apoptosis requires their quality to be tightly regulated. Mitophagy is the main cellular process responsible for mitochondrial quality control. It selectively sends damaged or excess mitochondria to the lysosomes for degradation and plays a critical role in maintaining cellular homeostasis. However, increasing evidence shows that viruses utilize mitophagy to promote their survival. Viruses use various strategies to manipulate mitophagy to eliminate critical, mitochondria-localized immune molecules in order to escape host immune attacks. In this article, we will review the scientific advances in mitophagy in viral infections and summarize how the host immune system responds to viral infection and how viruses manipulate host mitophagy to evade the host immune system.
    Keywords:  autophagy; immune; infection; mitochondria; mitophagy; virus
  13. iScience. 2021 Sep 24. 24(9): 103038
      Mitochondrial biogenesis is a cell response to external stimuli which is generally believed to suppress apoptosis. However, during the process of apoptosis, whether mitochondrial biogenesis occurs in the early stage of the apoptotic cells remains unclear. To address this question, we constructed the COX8-EGFP-ACTIN-mCherry HeLa cells with recombinant fluorescent proteins respectively tagged on the nucleus and mitochondria and monitored the mitochondrial changes in the living cells exposed to gamma-ray radiation. Besides in situ detection of mitochondrial fluorescence changes, we also examined the cell viability, nuclear DNA damage, reactive oxygen species (ROS), mitochondrial superoxide, citrate synthase activity, ATP, cytoplasmic and mitochondrial calcium, mitochondrial mass, mitochondrial morphology, and protein expression related to mitochondrial biogenesis, as well as the apoptosis biomarkers. As a result, we confirmed that significant mitochondrial biogenesis took place preceding the radiation-induced apoptosis, and it was closely correlated with the apoptotic cells at late stage. The involved mechanism was also discussed.
    Keywords:  Biochemistry methods; Biomolecular engineering; Cell biology
  14. Stem Cell Reports. 2021 Sep 14. pii: S2213-6711(21)00434-3. [Epub ahead of print]
      Therapeutic application of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) derivatives requires comprehensive assessment of the integrity of their nuclear and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to exclude oncogenic potential and functional deficits. It is unknown, to which extent mtDNA variants originate from their parental cells or from de novo mutagenesis, and whether dynamics in heteroplasmy levels are caused by inter- and intracellular selection or genetic drift. Sequencing of mtDNA of 26 iPSC clones did not reveal evidence for de novo mutagenesis, or for any selection processes during reprogramming or differentiation. Culture expansion, however, selected against putatively actionable mtDNA mutations. Altogether, our findings point toward a scenario in which intracellular selection of mtDNA variants during culture expansion shapes the mutational landscape of the mitochondrial genome. Our results suggest that intercellular selection and genetic drift exert minor impact and that the bottleneck effect in context of the mtDNA genetic pool might have been overestimated.
    Keywords:  genomic integrity; induced pluripotent stem cells; mitochondrial genome; prolonged expansion culture; reprogramming; selection; small-scale mutations
  15. EMBO J. 2021 Sep 20. e109529
      Permeabilization of the outer mitochondrial membrane initiates apoptotic cell death. B-cell lymphoma 2 (BCL-2) antagonist killer (BAK) and BCL-2-associated X (BAX) mediate mitochondrial poration, but how this process unfolds remains poorly defined. Two studies in this issue investigate the transition of dormant, inactive BAK monomer to a highly dynamic membrane-associated, pore-forming oligomer.
  16. Sci Rep. 2021 Sep 23. 11(1): 18916
      Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is an adult-onset neurodegenerative disorder characterized by loss of motor neurons. Mitochondria are essential for neuronal survival but the developmental timing and mechanistic importance of mitochondrial dysfunction in sporadic ALS (sALS) neurons is not fully understood. We used human induced pluripotent stem cells and generated a developmental timeline by differentiating sALS iPSCs to neural progenitors and to motor neurons and comparing mitochondrial parameters with familial ALS (fALS) and control cells at each developmental stage. We report that sALS and fALS motor neurons have elevated reactive oxygen species levels, depolarized mitochondria, impaired oxidative phosphorylation, ATP loss and defective mitochondrial protein import compared with control motor neurons. This phenotype develops with differentiation into motor neurons, the affected cell type in ALS, and does not occur in the parental undifferentiated sALS cells or sALS neural progenitors. Our work demonstrates a developmentally regulated unifying mitochondrial phenotype between patient derived sALS and fALS motor neurons. The occurrence of a unifying mitochondrial phenotype suggests that mitochondrial etiology known to SOD1-fALS may applicable to sALS. Furthermore, our findings suggest that disease-modifying treatments focused on rescue of mitochondrial function may benefit both sALS and fALS patients.
  17. EMBO Rep. 2021 Sep 24. e52476
      Changing environmental cues lead to the adjustment of cellular physiology by phosphorylation signaling networks that typically center around kinases as active effectors and phosphatases as antagonistic elements. Here, we report a signaling mechanism that reverses this principle. Using the hyperosmotic stress response in Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a model system, we find that a phosphatase-driven mechanism causes induction of phosphorylation. The key activating step that triggers this phospho-proteomic response is the Endosulfine-mediated inhibition of protein phosphatase 2A-Cdc55 (PP2ACdc55 ), while we do not observe concurrent kinase activation. In fact, many of the stress-induced phosphorylation sites appear to be direct substrates of the phosphatase, rendering PP2ACdc55 the main downstream effector of a signaling response that operates in parallel and independent of the well-established kinase-centric stress signaling pathways. This response affects multiple cellular processes and is required for stress survival. Our results demonstrate how a phosphatase can assume the role of active downstream effectors during signaling and allow re-evaluating the impact of phosphatases on shaping the phosphorylome.
    Keywords:  PP2A; endosulfine; greatwall kinase; hyperosmotic stress signaling; phosphatase
  18. J Extracell Vesicles. 2021 Sep;10(11): e12146
      Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) as a predominant cell component in the tumour microenvironment (TME) play an essential role in tumour progression. Our earlier studies revealed oxidized ATM activation in breast CAFs, which is independent of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). Oxidized ATM has been found to serve as a redox sensor to maintain cellular redox homeostasis. However, whether and how oxidized ATM in breast CAFs regulates breast cancer progression remains poorly understood. In this study, we found that oxidized ATM phosphorylates BNIP3 to induce autophagosome accumulation and exosome release from hypoxic breast CAFs. Inhibition of oxidized ATM kinase by KU60019 (a small-molecule inhibitor of activated ATM) or shRNA-mediated knockdown of endogenous ATM or BNIP3 blocks autophagy and exosome release from hypoxic CAFs. We also show that oxidized ATM phosphorylates ATP6V1G1, a core proton pump in maintaining lysosomal acidification, leading to lysosomal dysfunction and autophagosome fusion with multi-vesicular bodies (MVB) but not lysosomes to facilitate exosome release. Furthermore, autophagy-associated GPR64 is enriched in hypoxic CAFs-derived exosomes, which stimulates the non-canonical NF-κB signalling to upregulate MMP9 and IL-8 in recipient breast cancer cells, enabling cancer cells to acquire enhanced invasive abilities. Collectively, these results provide novel insights into the role of stromal CAFs in promoting tumour progression and reveal a new function of oxidized ATM in regulating autophagy and exosome release.
    Keywords:  autophagy; cancer-associated fibroblasts; exosomes; invasion; oxidized ATM
  19. Methods Mol Biol. 2022 ;2363 263-278
      C-to-U RNA editing in mitochondria and plastids is widespread in almost all terrestrial plants, where it mainly changes codons to encode conserved amino acids in organelle mRNAs. In flowering plants, the number of RNA editing sites reaches 400-600 in mitochondria and about 40 in plastids, respectively. To date, more than 100 factors involved in RNA editing have been identified. Since target cytidines of each factor are often distributed across multiple transcripts, comprehensive monitoring of all RNA editing sites is necessary for their characterization. Comparing the signals of C and T in the Sanger sequencing chromatogram of RT-PCR products is the most frequently employed method for quantification of RNA editing efficiency, although several methods based on next-generation sequencing have been developed. I here describe a quick and easy method for quantification of RNA editing efficiency at several hundred sites using the Sanger sequencing chromatogram data.
    Keywords:  C-to-U conversion; Mitochondria; RNA editing; RT-PCR; Sanger sequencing
  20. J Transl Med. 2021 Sep 19. 19(1): 395
      BACKGROUND: Restenosis after angioplasty is a major challenge for the treatment of coronary artery diseases. Facilitation of vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) apoptosis may be an attractive approach to decrease the incidence of restenosis. We synthesized a 16-amino acid mitofusin-2 (Mfn-2) gene related peptide (MRSP) based on the sequence of the p21ras signature motif, the smallest functional sequence of the Mfn-2 gene with proapoptotic properties in VSMC. We investigated whether MRSP enhanced apoptotic activities to inhibit VSMC accumulation and neointimal hyperplasia in rats with carotid balloon injury.METHODS: VSMCs were treated with different concentrations of MRSP, the PI3K agonist 740 Y-P and the inhibitor LY294002. Cell apoptosis and related pathway molecules were assessed. MRSP was also given to rats with carotid artery balloon injury. Neointimal hyperplasia and cell apoptotic pathways were detected.
    RESULTS: In vitro experiments revealed that MRSP treatment significantly increased VSMC apoptosis and induced increases in procaspase-9 cleavage, caspase-3 activation, cytochrome c release from mitochondria to the cytoplasm and the Bax/Bcl-2 ratio but not caspase-8 expression, indicating that the mitochondrial apoptotic cascade was activated by MRSP, which might be attributed to suppression of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway. We further found that the PI3K agonist 740 Y-P prevented and that the inhibitor LY294002 strengthened the proapoptotic effects of MRSP. MRSP strongly inhibited neointimal hyperplasia and VSMC accumulation, but increased VSMC apoptosis in the vascular wall after balloon injury. Moreover, MRSP substantially enhanced Bax and cleaved caspase-3 expression and decreased Bcl-2 levels in intima, accompanied by decreased levels of phosphorylated Akt and PI3K in vivo.
    CONCLUSIONS: Taken together, the present study showed that MRSP treatment results in a strong proapoptotic effect by activating the mitochondrial apoptotic cascade through suppression of the PI3K/Akt pathway.
    Keywords:  Apoptosis; MRSP; Neointimal hyperplasia; PI3K/Akt signaling
  21. Front Immunol. 2021 ;12 738473
      TRIM21 (Ro52/SSA1) is an E3 ubiquitin ligase with key roles in immune host defence, signal transduction, and possibly cell cycle regulation. It is also an autoantibody target in Sjögren's syndrome, systemic lupus erythematosus, and other rheumatic autoimmune diseases. Here, we summarise the structure and function of this enzyme, its roles in innate immunity, adaptive immunity and cellular homeostasis, the pathogenesis of autoimmunity against TRIM21, and the potential impacts of autoantibodies to this intracellular protein.
    Keywords:  E3 ubiquitin ligase; Fc receptor; Sjogren’s syndrome; autoimmune disease; innate immunity; intracellular antibodies; systemic lupus erythematosus