bims-ginsta Biomed News
on Genome instability
Issue of 2023‒08‒20
eight papers selected by
Jinrong Hu, National University of Singapore

  1. Curr Biol. 2023 Aug 04. pii: S0960-9822(23)00971-5. [Epub ahead of print]
      Centromeres direct genetic inheritance but are not themselves genetically encoded. Instead, centromeres are defined epigenetically by the presence of a histone H3 variant, CENP-A.1 In cultured somatic cells, an established paradigm of cell-cycle-coupled propagation maintains centromere identity: CENP-A is partitioned between sisters during replication and replenished by new assembly, which is restricted to G1. The mammalian female germ line challenges this model because of the cell-cycle arrest between pre-meiotic S phase and the subsequent G1, which can last for the entire reproductive lifespan (months to decades). New CENP-A chromatin assembly maintains centromeres during prophase I in worm and starfish oocytes,2,3 suggesting that a similar process may be required for centromere inheritance in mammals. To test this hypothesis, we developed an oocyte-specific conditional knockout (cKO) mouse for Mis18α, an essential component of the assembly machinery. We find that embryos derived from Mis18α knockout oocytes fail to assemble CENP-A nucleosomes prior to zygotic genome activation (ZGA), validating the knockout model. We show that deletion of Mis18α in the female germ line at the time of birth has no impact on centromeric CENP-A nucleosome abundance, even after 6-8 months of aging. In addition, there is no detectable detriment to fertility. Thus, centromere chromatin is maintained long-term, independent of new assembly during the extended prophase I arrest in mouse oocytes.
    Keywords:  centromeres; meiosis; nucleosomes; oocytes; protein stability; reproductive aging
  2. Cell Rep. 2023 Aug 10. pii: S2211-1247(23)00966-X. [Epub ahead of print] 112955
      Biomolecular condensates are implicated in core cellular processes such as gene regulation and ribosome biogenesis. Although the architecture of biomolecular condensates is thought to rely on collective interactions between many components, it is unclear how the collective interactions required for their formation emerge during evolution. Here, we show that the structure and evolution of a recently emerged biomolecular condensate, the nucleolar fibrillar center (FC), is explained by a single self-assembling scaffold, TCOF1. TCOF1 is necessary to form the FC, and it structurally defines the FC through self-assembly mediated by homotypic interactions of serine/glutamate-rich low-complexity regions (LCRs). Finally, introduction of TCOF1 into a species lacking the FC is sufficient to form an FC-like biomolecular condensate. By demonstrating that a recently emerged biomolecular condensate is built on a simple architecture determined by a single self-assembling protein, our work provides a compelling mechanism by which biomolecular condensates can emerge in the tree of life.
    Keywords:  CP: Cell biology; CP: Molecular biology; biophysics; condensates; evolution; low-complexity regions; nucleolus; phase separation; scaffolds; self-assembly
  3. EMBO J. 2023 Aug 18. e113647
      During mitosis, spindle architecture alters as chromosomes segregate into daughter cells. The microtubule crosslinker protein regulator of cytokinesis 1 (PRC1) is essential for spindle stability, chromosome segregation and completion of cytokinesis, but how it recruits motors to the central spindle to coordinate the segregation of chromosomes is unknown. Here, we combine structural and cell biology approaches to show that the human CENP-E motor, which is essential for chromosome capture and alignment by microtubules, binds to PRC1 through a conserved hydrophobic motif. This binding mechanism is also used by Kinesin-4 Kif4A:PRC1. Using in vitro reconstitution, we demonstrate that CENP-E slides antiparallel PRC1-crosslinked microtubules. We find that the regulation of CENP-E -PRC1 interaction is spatially and temporally coupled with relocalization to overlapping microtubules in anaphase. Finally, we demonstrate that the PRC1-microtubule motor interaction is essential in anaphase to control chromosome partitioning, retain central spindle integrity and ensure cytokinesis. Taken together our findings reveal the molecular basis for the cell cycle regulation of motor-PRC1 complexes to couple chromosome segregation and cytokinesis.
    Keywords:  kinesin; microtubule; mitosis; phosphorylation; spindle
  4. Cardiovasc Res. 2023 Aug 18. pii: cvad126. [Epub ahead of print]
      AIMS: Damage of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a hallmark of brain injury during the early stages of ischemic stroke. The subsequent endothelial hyperpermeability drives the initial pathological changes and aggravates neuronal death. Transient receptor potential melastatin 2 (TRPM2) is a Ca2+-permeable nonselective cation channel activated by oxidative stress. However, whether TRPM2 is involved in BBB degradation during ischemic stroke remains unknown. We aimed to investigate the role of TRPM2 in BBB degradation during ischemic stroke and the underlying molecular mechanisms.METHODS: and results: Specific deletion of Trpm2 in endothelial cells using Cdh5 Cre produces a potent protective effect against brain injury in mice subjected to middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO), which is characterized by reduced infarction size, mitigated plasma extravasation, suppressed immune cell invasion and inhibited oxidative stress. In vitro experiments using cultured cerebral endothelial cells (CECs) demonstrated that either Trpm2 deletion or inhibition of TRPM2 activation attenuates oxidative stress, Ca2+ overload, and endothelial hyperpermeability induced by oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) and CD36 ligand thrombospondin-1 (TSP1). In transfected HEK293T cells, OGD and TSP1 activate TRPM2 in a CD36-dependent manner. Noticeably, in cultured CECs, deleting Trpm2 or inhibiting TRPM2 activation also suppresses the activation of CD36 and cellular dysfunction induced by OGD or TSP1.
    CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, our data reveals a novel molecular mechanism in which TRPM2 and CD36 promote the activation of each other, which exacerbates endothelial dysfunction during ischemic stroke. Our study suggests that TRPM2 in endothelial cells is a promising target for developing more effective and safer therapies for ischemic stroke.
    Keywords:  CD36; Transient receptor potential melastatin 2 (TRPM2); blood brain barrier (BBB); endothelial hyperpermeability; ischemic stroke; thrombospondin-1 (TSP1)
  5. Life Sci Alliance. 2023 Nov;pii: e202302303. [Epub ahead of print]6(11):
      Different types of anaphase bridges are reported to form between segregating chromosomes during cell division. Previous studies using laser microsurgery suggested that elastic tethers connect the telomeres of separating anaphase chromosomes in many animal meiotic and mitotic cells. However, structural evidence is lacking for their existence. In this study, by correlating live imaging with electron tomography, we examined whether visible structures connect separating telomeres in meiosis I of crane-fly primary spermatocytes. We found structures extending between separating telomeres in all stages of anaphase. The structures consist of two components: one is darkly stained, looking somewhat like chromatin, whereas the other is more lightly stained, appearing filamentous. Although in early anaphase both structures extend between telomeres, in later anaphase, the darker structure extends shorter distances from the telomeres but the lighter structure still extends between the separating telomeres. From these observations, we deduced that these structures represent the "tethers" inferred from the laser-cutting experiments. Because elastic tethers have been detected in a variety of animal cells, they probably are present during anaphase in all animal cells.
  6. Curr Opin Rheumatol. 2023 Aug 10.
      PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Tissue fibrosis is an increasingly prevalent condition associated with various diseases and heavily impacting on global morbidity and mortality rates. Growing evidence indicates that common cellular and molecular mechanisms may drive fibrosis of diverse cause and affecting different organs. The scope of this review is to highlight recent findings in support for an important role of vascular endothelial cells in the pathogenesis of fibrosis, with a special focus on systemic sclerosis as a prototypic multisystem fibrotic disorder.RECENT FINDINGS: Although transition of fibroblasts to chronically activated myofibroblasts is widely considered the central profibrotic switch, the endothelial cell involvement in development and progression of fibrosis has been increasingly recognized over the last few years. Endothelial cells can contribute to the fibrotic process either directly by acting as source of myofibroblasts through endothelial-to-myofibroblast transition (EndMT) and concomitant microvascular rarefaction, or indirectly by becoming senescent and/or secreting a variety of profibrotic and proinflammatory mediators with consequent fibroblast activation and recruitment of inflammatory/immune cells that further promote fibrosis.
    SUMMARY: An in-depth understanding of the mechanisms underlying EndMT or the acquisition of a profibrotic secretory phenotype by endothelial cells will provide the rationale for novel endothelial cell reprogramming-based therapeutic approaches to prevent and/or treat fibrosis.
  7. PLoS Genet. 2023 Aug 14. 19(8): e1010875
      Lipid droplets (LDs) are ubiquitous organelles that facilitate neutral lipid storage in cells, including energy-dense triglycerides. They are found in all investigated metazoan embryos where they are thought to provide energy for development. Intriguingly, early embryos of diverse metazoan species asymmetrically allocate LDs amongst cellular lineages, a process which can involve massive intracellular redistribution of LDs. However, the biological reason for asymmetric lineage allocation is unknown. To address this issue, we utilize the Drosophila embryo where the cytoskeletal mechanisms that drive allocation are well characterized. We disrupt allocation by two different means: Loss of the LD protein Jabba results in LDs adhering inappropriately to glycogen granules; loss of Klar alters the activities of the microtubule motors that move LDs. Both mutants cause the same dramatic change in LD tissue inheritance, shifting allocation of the majority of LDs to the yolk cell instead of the incipient epithelium. Embryos with such mislocalized LDs do not fully consume their LDs and are delayed in hatching. Through use of a dPLIN2 mutant, which appropriately localizes a smaller pool of LDs, we find that failed LD transport and a smaller LD pool affect embryogenesis in a similar manner. Embryos of all three mutants display overlapping changes in their transcriptome and proteome, suggesting that lipid deprivation results in a shared embryonic response and a widespread change in metabolism. Excitingly, we find abundant changes related to redox homeostasis, with many proteins related to glutathione metabolism upregulated. LD deprived embryos have an increase in peroxidized lipids and rely on increased utilization of glutathione-related proteins for survival. Thus, embryos are apparently able to mount a beneficial response upon lipid stress, rewiring their metabolism to survive. In summary, we demonstrate that early embryos allocate LDs into specific lineages for subsequent optimal utilization, thus protecting against oxidative stress and ensuring punctual development.
  8. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2023 08 22. 120(34): e2306073120
      Mitochondria are dynamic organelles that undergo frequent remodeling to accommodate developmental needs. Here, we describe a striking organization of mitochondria into a large ball-like structure adjacent to the nucleus in premeiotic Drosophila melanogaster spermatocytes, which we term "mitoball". Mitoballs are transient structures that colocalize with the endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi bodies, and the fusome. We observed similar premeiotic mitochondrial clusters in a wide range of insect species, including mosquitos and cockroaches. Through a genetic screen, we identified that Milton, an adaptor protein that links mitochondria to microtubule-based motors, mediates mitoball formation. Flies lacking a 54 amino acid region in the C terminus of Milton completely lacked mitoballs, had swollen mitochondria in their spermatocytes, and showed reduced male fertility. We suggest that the premeiotic mitochondrial clustering is a conserved feature of insect spermatogenesis that supports sperm development.
    Keywords:  Milton-mediated mitochondrial trafficking; insect spermatogenesis; male fertility; mitoballs; mitochondrial clustering