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  • MinireviewJune 30, 2017

    21 597 1919

    Alterations in Striatal Circuits Underlying Addiction-Like Behaviors

    Hyun Jin Kim, Joo Han Lee, Kyunghwa Yun, and Joung-Hun Kim

    Mol. Cells 2017; 40(6): 379-385

    Abstract : Drug addiction is a severe psychiatric disorder characterized by the compulsive pursuit of drugs of abuse despite potential adverse consequences. Although several decades of studies have revealed that psychostimulant use can result in extensive alterations of neural circuits and physiology, no effective therapeutic strategies or medicines for drug addiction currently exist. Changes in neuronal connectivity and regulation occurring after repeated drug exposure contribute to addiction-like behaviors in animal models. Among the involved brain areas, including those of the reward system, the striatum is the major area of convergence for glutamate, GABA, and dopamine transmission, and this brain region potentially determines stereotyped behaviors. Although the physiological consequences of striatal neurons after drug exposure have been relatively well documented, it remains to be clarified how changes in striatal connectivity underlie and modulate the expression of addiction-like behaviors. Understanding how striatal circuits contribute to addiction-like behaviors may lead to the development of strategies that successfully attenuate drug-induced behavioral changes. In this review, we summarize the results of recent studies that have examined striatal circuitry and pathway-specific alterations leading to addiction-like behaviors to provide an updated framework for future investigations.

  • ArticleJune 30, 2017

    19 656 1544

    The Significance of SDF-1α-CXCR4 Axis in in vivo Angiogenic Ability of Human Periodontal Ligament Stem Cells

    Yoon-Kyung Bae, Gee-Hye Kim, Jae Cheoun Lee, Byoung-Moo Seo, Kyeung-Min Joo, Gene Lee, and Hyun Nam

    Mol. Cells 2017; 40(6): 386-392

    Abstract : Periodontal ligament stem cells (PDLSCs) are multipotent stem cells derived from periodontium and have mesenchymal stem cell (MSC)-like characteristics. Recently, the perivascular region was recognized as the developmental origin of MSCs, which suggests the in vivo angiogenic potential of PDLSCs. In this study, we investigated whether PDLSCs could be a potential source of perivascular cells, which could contribute to in vivo angiogenesis. PDLSCs exhibited typical MSC-like characteristics such as the expression pattern of surface markers (CD29, CD44, CD73, and CD105) and differentiation potentials (osteogenic and adipogenic differentiation). Moreover, PDLSCs expressed perivascular cell markers such as NG2, αsmooth muscle actin, platelet-derived growth factor receptor β, and CD146. We conducted an in vivo Matrigel plug assay to confirm the in vivo angiogenic potential of PDLSCs. We could not observe significant vessel-like structures with PDLSCs alone or human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HU-VECs) alone at day 7 after injection. However, when PDLSCs and HUVECs were co-injected, there were vessel-like structures containing red blood cells in the lumens, which suggested that anastomosis occurred between newly formed vessels and host circulatory system. To block the SDF-1α and CXCR4 axis between PDLSCs and HUVECs, AMD3100, a CXCR4 antagonist, was added into the Matrigel plug. After day 3 and day 7 after injection, there were no significant vessel-like structures. In conclusion, we demonstrated the peri-vascular characteristics of PDLSCs and their contribution to in vivo angiogenesis, which might imply potential application of PDLSCs into the neovascularization of tissue engineering and vascular diseases.

  • ArticleJune 30, 2017

    7 1025 1785

    Abstract : Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a chronic metabolic disease characterized by lack of insulin and high glucose levels. T2DM can cause bone loss and fracture, thus leading to diabetic osteoporosis. Promoting osteogenic differentiation of osteoblasts may effectively treat diabetic osteoporosis. We previously reported that Sirtuin 1 (Sirt1), a NAD+-dependent deacetylase, promotes osteogenic differentiation through downregulation of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) γ. We also found that miR-132 regulates osteogenic differentiation by downregulating Sirt1 in a PPARβ/δ-dependent manner. The ligand-activated transcription factor, PPARα, is another isotype of the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor family that helps maintain bone homeostasis and promot bone formation. Whether the regulatory role of PPARα in osteogenic differentiation is mediated via Sirt1 remains unclear. In the present study, we aimed to determine this role and the underlying mechanism by using high glucose (HG) and free fatty acids (FFA) to mimic T2DM in MC3T3-E1 cells. The results showed that HG-FFA significantly inhibited expression of PPARα, Sirt1 and osteogenic differentiation, but these effects were markedly reversed by PPARα overexpression. Moreover, siSirt1 attenuated the positive effects of PPARα on osteogenic differentiation, suggesting that PPARα promotes osteogenic differentiation in a Sirt1-dependent manner. Luciferase activity assay confirmed interactions between PPARα and Sirt1. These findings indicate that PPARα promotes osteogenic differentiation via the Sirt1-dependent signaling pathway.

  • ArticleJune 30, 2017

    7 765 1195

    The Fungal Metabolite Brefeldin A Inhibits Dvl2-Plk1-Dependent Primary Cilium Disassembly

    Uijeong Lee, Sun-Ok Kim, Jeong-Ah Hwang, Jae-Hyuk Jang, Sangkeun Son, In-Ja Ryoo, Jong Seog Ahn, Bo Yeon Kim, and Kyung Ho Lee

    Mol. Cells 2017; 40(6): 401-409

    Abstract : The primary cilium is a non-motile microtubule-based organelle that protrudes from the surface of most human cells and works as a cellular antenna to accept extracellular signals. Primary cilia assemble from the basal body during the resting stage (G0 phase) and simultaneously disassemble with cell cycle re-entry. Defective control of assembly or disassembly causes diverse human diseases including ciliopathy and cancer. To identify the effective compounds for studying primary cilium disassembly, we have screened 297 natural compounds and identified 18 and 17 primary cilium assembly and disassembly inhibitors, respectively. Among them, the application of KY-0120, identified as Brefeldin A, disturbed Dvl2-Plk1-mediated cilium disassembly via repression of the interaction of CK1?-Dvl2 and the expression of Plk1 mRNA. Therefore, our study may suggest useful compounds for studying the cellular mechanism of primary cilium disassembly to prevent ciliopathy and cancer.

  • ArticleJune 30, 2017

    2 408 1095

    Cell Death-Associated Ribosomal RNA Cleavage in Postmortem Tissues and Its Forensic Applications

    Ji Yeon Kim, Yunmi Kim, Hyo Kyeong Cha, Hye Young Lim, Hyungsub Kim, Sooyoung Chung, Juck-Joon Hwang, Seong Hwan Park, and Gi Hoon Son

    Mol. Cells 2017; 40(6): 410-417

    Abstract : Estimation of postmortem interval (PMI) is a key issue in the field of forensic pathology. With the availability of quantitative analysis of RNA levels in postmortem tissues, several studies have assessed the postmortem degradation of constitutively expressed RNA species to estimate PMI. However, conventional RNA quantification as well as biochemical and physiological changes employed thus far have limitations related to standardization or normalization. The present study focuses on an interesting feature of the subdomains of certain RNA species, in which they are site-specifically cleaved during apoptotic cell death. We found that the D8 divergent domain of ribosomal RNA (rRNA) bearing cell death-related cleavage sites was rapidly removed during postmortem RNA degradation. In contrast to the fragile domain, the 5′ terminal region of 28S rRNA was remarkably stable during the postmortem period. Importantly, the differences in the degradation rates between the two domains in mammalian 28S rRNA were highly proportional to increasing PMI with a significant linear correlation observed in mice as well as human autopsy tissues. In conclusion, we demonstrate that comparison of the degradation rates between domains of a single RNA species provides quantitative information on postmortem degradation states, which can be applied for the estimation of PMI.

  • ArticleJune 30, 2017

    12 407 1091

    IP-10 Expression in Patients with Chronic HBV Infection and Its Ability to Predict the Decrease in HBsAg Levels after Treatment with Entecavir

    Kai Zhao, Tao Yang, Mimi Sun, Wei Zhang, Yong An, Gang Chen, Lei Jin, Qinghua Shang, and Wengang Song

    Mol. Cells 2017; 40(6): 418-425

    Abstract : Interferon-γ-inducible protein 10 (IP-10), also known as chemokine C-X-C motif ligand (CXCL) 10, is closely associated with antiviral immunity and the progression of chronic hepatitis B (CHB). However, the value of baseline serological and histological IP-10 expression levels in predicting the efficacy of the antiviral response to nucleoside/nucleotide analogues (NAs) is still unknown. In our research, intrahepatic and peripheral IP-10 expression levels were systemically examined before and after treatment with entecavir (ETV). Baseline serological and histological IP-10 expression levels were significantly increased in patients with CHB, particularly in patients with higher degrees of liver inflammation and liver fibrosis. Moreover, higher baseline intrahepatic IP-10 levels indicated better prognoses in patients with CHB after entecavir therapy. The baseline IP-10 level was also positively associated with several clinical parameters, including baseline levels of alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), hepatitis B virus (HBV) DNA, and hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg), and with the decrease in HBsAg levels after treatment. In addition, monocyte-derived IP-10 was expressed at higher levels in patients with CHB than in patients with liver cirrhosis (LC) and healthy controls (HC). According to the results of our in vitro experiments, IP-10 directly promoted hepatocyte apoptosis. Based on these findings, baseline serological and histological IP-10 levels might predict CHB severity and the decrease in HBsAg levels after entecavir therapy.

  • ArticleJune 30, 2017

    1 399 787

    Abstract : Ephrin-A5 has been implicated in the regulation of brain morphogenesis and axon pathfinding. In this study, we used bacterial homologous recombination to express a LacZ reporter in various ephrin-A5 BAC clones to identify elements that regulate ephrin-A5 gene expression during mesencephalon development. We found that there is mesencephalon-specific enhancer activity localized to a specific +25.0 kb to +30.5 kb genomic region in the first intron of ephrin-A5. Further comparative genomic analysis indicated that two evolutionary conserved regions, ECR1 and ECR2, were present within this 5.5 kb region. Deletion of ECR1 from the enhancer resulted in disrupted mesencephalon-specific enhancer activity in transgenic embryos. We also found a consensus binding site for basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factors (TFs) in a highly conserved region at the 3′-end of ECR1. We further demonstrated that specific deletion of the bHLH TF binding site abrogated the mesencephalon-specific enhancer activity in transgenic embryos. Finally, both electrophoretic mobility shift assay and luciferase-based transactivation assay revealed that the transcription factor Ascl1 bound the bHLH consensus binding site in the mesencephalon-specific ephrin-A5 enhancer in vitro. Together, these results suggest that the bHLH TF binding site in ECR1 is involved in the positive regulation of ephrin-A5 gene expression during the development of the mesencephalon.

  • ArticleJune 30, 2017

    7 497 1079

    Gestational Diabetes Affects the Growth and Functions of Perivascular Stem Cells

    Borim An, Eunbi Kim, Haengseok Song, Kwon-Soo Ha, Eun-Taek Han, Won Sun Park, Tae Gyu Ahn, Se-Ran Yang, Sunghun Na, and Seok-Ho Hong

    Mol. Cells 2017; 40(6): 434-439

    Abstract : Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), one of the common metabolic disorders of pregnancy, leads to functional alterations in various cells including stem cells as well as some abnormalities in fetal development. Perivascular stem cells (PVCs) have gained more attention in recent years, for the treatment of various diseases. However, the effect of GDM on PVC function has not been investigated. In our study, we isolated PVCs from umbilical cord of normal pregnant women and GDM patients and compared their phenotypes and function. There is no significant difference in phenotypic expression, response to bFGF exposure and adipogenic differentiation capacity between normal (N)-PVCs and GDM-PVCs. However, when compared with N-PVCs, early passage GDM-PVCs displayed decreased initial rates of cell yield and proliferation as well as a reduced ability to promote wound closure. These results suggest that maternal metabolic dysregulation during gestation can alter the function of endogenous multipotent stem cells, which may impact their therapeutic effectiveness.

Mol. Cells
Sep 30, 2023 Vol.46 No.9, pp. 527~572
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is marked by airspace enlargement (emphysema) and small airway fibrosis, leading to airflow obstruction and eventual respiratory failure. Shown is a microphotograph of hematoxylin and eosin (H&E)-stained histological sections of the enlarged alveoli as an indicator of emphysema. Piao et al. (pp. 558-572) demonstrate that recombinant human hyaluronan and proteoglycan link protein 1 (rhHAPLN1) significantly reduces the extended airspaces of the emphysematous alveoli by increasing the levels of TGF-β receptor I and SIRT1/6, as a previously unrecognized mechanism in human alveolar epithelial cells, and consequently mitigates COPD.


Molecules and Cells

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