The Babraham Institute Publications database contains details of all publications resulting from our research groups and scientific facilities. Pre-prints by Institute authors can be viewed on the Institute's bioRxiv channel. We believe that free and open access to the outputs of publicly‐funded research offers significant social and economic benefits, as well as aiding the development of new research. We are working to provide Open Access to as many publications as possible and these can be identified below by the padlock icon. Where this hasn't been possible, subscriptions may be required to view the full text.

J Houseley, D Tollervey Epigenetics

Recent analyses have shown that the activity of the yeast nuclear exosome is stimulated by the Trf4p-Air1/2p-Mtr4p polyadenylation (TRAMP) complex. Here, we report that strains lacking the Rrp6p component of the nuclear exosome accumulate polyadenylated forms of many different ribosomal RNA precursors (pre-rRNAs). This polyadenylation is reduced in strains lacking either the poly(A) polymerase Trf4p or its close homologue Trf5p. In contrast, polyadenylation is enhanced by overexpression of Trf5p. Polyadenylation is also markedly increased in strains lacking the RNA helicase Mtr4p, indicating that it is required to couple poly(A) polymerase activity to degradation. Tandem affinity purification-tagged purified Trf5p showed polyadenylation activity in vitro, which was abolished by a double point mutation in the predicted catalytic site. Trf5p co-purified with Mtr4p and Air1p, indicating that it forms a complex, designated TRAMP5, that has functions that partially overlap with the TRAMP complex.

+view abstract EMBO reports , PMID: 16374505 2006

H Laser, L Conforti, G Morreale, TG Mack, M Heyer, JE Haley, TM Wishart, B Beirowski, SA Walker, G Haase, A Celik, R Adalbert, D Wagner, D Grumme, RR Ribchester, M Plomann, MP Coleman Signalling

Slow Wallerian degeneration (Wld(S)) mutant mice express a chimeric nuclear protein that protects sick or injured axons from degeneration. The C-terminal region, derived from NAD(+) synthesizing enzyme Nmnat1, is reported to confer neuroprotection in vitro. However, an additional role for the N-terminal 70 amino acids (N70), derived from multiubiquitination factor Ube4b, has not been excluded. In wild-type Ube4b, N70 is part of a sequence essential for ubiquitination activity but its role is not understood. We report direct binding of N70 to valosin-containing protein (VCP; p97/Cdc48), a protein with diverse cellular roles including a pivotal role in the ubiquitin proteasome system. Interaction with Wld(S) targets VCP to discrete intranuclear foci where ubiquitin epitopes can also accumulate. Wld(S) lacking its N-terminal 16 amino acids (N16) neither binds nor redistributes VCP, but continues to accumulate in intranuclear foci, targeting its intrinsic NAD(+) synthesis activity to these same foci. Wild-type Ube4b also requires N16 to bind VCP, despite a more C-terminal binding site in invertebrate orthologues. We conclude that N-terminal sequences of Wld(S) protein influence the intranuclear location of both ubiquitin proteasome and NAD(+) synthesis machinery and that an evolutionary recent sequence mediates binding of mammalian Ube4b to VCP.

+view abstract Molecular biology of the cell , PMID: 16371511 2006

Constância M, Angiolini E, Sandovici I, Smith P, Smith R, Kelsey G, Dean W, Ferguson-Smith A, Sibley CP, Reik W, Fowden A Epigenetics

The mammalian fetus is unique in its dependence during gestation on the supply of maternal nutrients through the placenta. Maternal supply and fetal demand for nutrients need to be fine tuned for healthy growth and development of the fetus along its genetic trajectory. An altered balance between supply and demand can lead to deviations from this trajectory with long-term consequences for health. We have previously shown that in a knockout lacking the imprinted placental-specific Igf2 transcript (P0), growth of the placenta is compromised from early gestation but fetal growth is normal until late gestation, suggesting functional adaptation of the placenta to meet the fetal demands. Here, we show that placental transport of glucose and amino acids are increased in the Igf2 P0(+/-) null and that this up-regulation of transport occurs, at least in part, through increased expression of the transporter genes Slc2a3 and Slc38a4, the imprinted member of the System A amino acid transporter gene family. Decreasing fetal demand genetically by removal of fetal Igf2 abolished up-regulation of both transport systems and reduced placental System A amino acid transport activity and expression of Slc38a2 in late gestation. Our results provide direct evidence that the placenta can respond to fetal demand signals through regulation of expression of specific placental transport systems. Thus, crosstalk between an imprinted growth demand gene (Igf2) and placental supply transporter genes (Slc38a4, Slc38a2, and Slc2a3) may be a component of the genetic control of nutrient supply and demand during mammalian development.

+view abstract Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America , PMID: 16365304 2005

Webster J, Oxley D Mass Spectrometry

Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI)-time-of-flight (TOF)-mass spectrometry (MS) is now routinely used in many laboratories for the rapid and sensitive identification of proteins by peptide mass fingerprinting (PMF). We describe a simple protocol that can be performed in a standard biochemistry laboratory, whereby proteins separated by one- or two-dimensional gel electrophoresis can be identified at femtomole levels. The procedure involves excision of the spot or band from the gel, washing and de-staining, reduction and alkylation, in-gel trypsin digestion, MALDI-TOF MS of the tryptic peptides, and database searching of the PMF data. Up to 96 protein samples can easily be manually processed at one time by this method.

+view abstract Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) , PMID: 16350956 2005

Le Novère N, Finney A, Hucka M, Bhalla US, Campagne F, Collado-Vides J, Crampin EJ, Halstead M, Klipp E, Mendes P, Nielsen P, Sauro H, Shapiro B, Snoep JL, Spence HD, Wanner BL Signalling

Most of the published quantitative models in biology are lost for the community because they are either not made available or they are insufficiently characterized to allow them to be reused. The lack of a standard description format, lack of stringent reviewing and authors' carelessness are the main causes for incomplete model descriptions. With today's increased interest in detailed biochemical models, it is necessary to define a minimum quality standard for the encoding of those models. We propose a set of rules for curating quantitative models of biological systems. These rules define procedures for encoding and annotating models represented in machine-readable form. We believe their application will enable users to (i) have confidence that curated models are an accurate reflection of their associated reference descriptions, (ii) search collections of curated models with precision, (iii) quickly identify the biological phenomena that a given curated model or model constituent represents and (iv) facilitate model reuse and composition into large subcellular models.

+view abstract Nature biotechnology , PMID: 16333295 2005

Reik W, Ferguson-Smith AC

+view abstract Nature , PMID: 16292295 2005

MJ Parker, S Licence, L Erlandsson, GR Galler, L Chakalova, CS Osborne, G Morgan, P Fraser, H Jumaa, TH Winkler, J Skok, IL Mårtensson

The pre-B-cell receptor (pre-BCR), composed of Ig heavy and surrogate light chain (SLC), signals pre-BII-cell proliferative expansion. We have investigated whether the pre-BCR also signals downregulation of the SLC genes (VpreB and lambda5), thereby limiting this expansion. We demonstrate that, as BM cells progress from the pre-BI to large pre-BII-cell stage, there is a shift from bi- to mono-allelic lambda5 transcription, while the second allele is silenced in small pre-BII cells. A VpreB1-promoter-driven transgene shows the same pattern, therefore suggesting that VpreB1 is similarly regulated and thereby defines the promoter as a target for transcriptional silencing. Analyses of pre-BCR-deficient mice show a temporal delay in lambda5 downregulation, thereby demonstrating that the pre-BCR is essential for monoallelic silencing at the large pre-BII-cell stage. Our data also suggest that SLP-65 is one of the signaling components important for this process. Furthermore, the VpreB1/lambda5 alleles undergo dynamic changes with respect to nuclear positioning and heterochromatin association, thereby providing a possible mechanism for their transcriptional silencing.

+view abstract The EMBO journal , PMID: 16281060 2005

Singh U, Sun T, Shi W, Schulz R, Nuber UA, Varanou A, Hemberger MC, Elliott RW, Ohta H, Wakayama T, Fundele R Epigenetics

Different causes, such as maternal diabetes, cloning by nuclear transfer, interspecific hybridization, and deletion of some genes such as Esx1, Ipl, or Cdkn1c, may underlie placental overgrowth. In a previous study, we carried out comparative gene expression analysis in three models of placental hyperplasias, cloning, interspecies hybridization (IHPD), and Esx1 deletion. This study identified a large number of genes that exhibited differential expression between normal and enlarged placentas; however, it remained unclear how altered expression of any specific gene was related to any specific placental phenotype. In the present study, we focused on two genes, Car2 and Ncam1, which both exhibited increased expression in interspecies and cloned hyperplastic placentas. Apart from a detailed expression analysis of both genes during normal murine placentation, we also assessed morphology of placentas that were null for Car2 or Ncam1. Finally, we attempted to rescue placental hyperplasia in a congenic model of IHPD by decreasing transcript levels of Car2 or Ncam1. In situ analysis showed that both genes are expressed mainly in the spongiotrophoblast, however, expression patterns exhibited significant variability during development. Contrary to expectations, homozygous deletion of either Car2 or Ncam1 did not result in placental phenotypes. However, expression analysis of Car3 and Ncam2, which can take over the function of Car2 and Ncam1, respectively, indicated a possible rescue mechanism, as Car3 and Ncam2 were expressed in spongiotrophoblast of Car2 and Ncam1 mutant placentas. On the other hand, downregulation of either Car2 or Ncam1 did not rescue any of the placental phenotypes of AT24 placentas, a congenic model for interspecies hybrid placentas. This strongly suggested that altered expression of Car2 and Ncam1 is a downstream event in placental hyperplasia.

+view abstract Developmental dynamics : an official publication of the American Association of Anatomists , PMID: 16247769 2005

Welch HC, Condliffe AM, Milne LJ, Ferguson GJ, Hill K, Webb LM, Okkenhaug K, Coadwell WJ, Andrews SR, Thelen M, Jones GE, Hawkins PT, Stephens LR Immunology , Bioinformatics

Rac GTPases regulate cytoskeletal structure, gene expression, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. Rac2-deficient neutrophils cannot chemotax, produce ROS, or degranulate upon G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) activation. Deficiency in PI3Kgamma, an upstream regulator of Rac, causes a similar phenotype. P-Rex1, a guanine-nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) for Rac, is believed to link GPCRs and PI3Kgamma to Rac-dependent neutrophil responses. We have investigated the functional importance of P-Rex1 by generating a P-Rex1(-/-) mouse. P-Rex1(-/-) mice are viable and healthy, with apparently normal leukocyte development, but with mild neutrophilia. In neutrophils from P-Rex1(-/-) mice, GPCR-dependent Rac2 activation is impaired, whereas Rac1 activation is less compromised. GPCR-dependent ROS formation is absent in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-primed P-Rex1(-/-) neutrophils, but less affected in unprimed or TNFalpha-primed cells. Recruitment of P-Rex1(-/-) neutrophils to inflammatory sites is impaired. Surprisingly, chemotaxis of isolated neutrophils is only slightly reduced, with a mild defect in cell speed, but normal polarization and directionality. Secretion of azurophil granules is unaffected. In conclusion, P-Rex1 is an important regulator of neutrophil function by mediating a subset of Rac-dependent neutrophil responses. However, P-Rex1 is not an essential regulator of neutrophil chemotaxis and degranulation.

+view abstract Current biology : CB , PMID: 16243035 2005

M Coleman Signalling

A wide range of insults can trigger axon degeneration, and axons respond with diverse morphology, topology and speed. However, recent genetic, immunochemical, morphological and pharmacological investigations point to convergent degeneration mechanisms. The principal convergence points - poor axonal transport, mitochondrial dysfunction and an increase in intra-axonal calcium - have been identified by rescuing axons with the slow Wallerian degeneration gene (Wld(S)) and studies with blockers of sodium or calcium influx. By understanding how the pathways fit together, we can combine our knowledge of mechanisms, and potentially also treatment strategies, from different axonal disorders.

+view abstract Nature reviews. Neuroscience , PMID: 16224497 2005

Richardson SM,Walker RV,Parker S,Rhodes NP,Hunt JA,Freemont AJ,Hoyland JA Flow Cytometry

Low back pain is one of the largest health problems in the Western world today, and intervertebral disc degeneration has been identified as a main cause. Currently, treatments are symptomatic, but cell-based tissue engineering methods are realistic alternatives for tissue regeneration. However, the major problem for these strategies is the generation of a suitable population of cells. Adult bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are undifferentiated, multipotent cells that have the ability to differentiate into a number of cell types, including the chondrocyte-like cells found within the nucleus pulposus (NP) of the intervertebral disc; however, no method exists to differentiate these cells in an accessible monolayer environment. We have conducted coculture experiments to determine whether cells from the human NP can initiate the differentiation of human MSCs with or without cell-cell contact. Fluorescent labeling of the stem cell population and high-speed cell sorting after coculture with cell-cell contact allowed examination of individual cell populations. Real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction showed significant increases in NP marker genes in stem cells when cells were cocultured with contact for 7 days, and this change was regulated by cell ratio. No significant change in NP marker gene expression in either NP cells or stem cells was observed when cells were cultured without contact, regardless of cell ratio. Thus, we have shown that human NP and MSC coculture with contact is a viable method for generating a large population of differentiated cells that could be used in cell-based tissue engineering therapies for regeneration of the degenerate intervertebral disc.

+view abstract Stem cells (Dayton, Ohio) , PMID: 16223853 2006

Barona T, Byrne RD, Pettitt TR, Wakelam MJ, Larijani B, Poccia DL Signalling

Purified membrane vesicles isolated from sea urchin eggs form nuclear envelopes around sperm nuclei following GTP hydrolysis in the presence of cytosol. A low density subfraction of these vesicles (MV1), highly enriched in phosphatidylinositol (PtdIns), is required for nuclear envelope formation. Membrane fusion of MV1 with a second fraction that contributes most of the nuclear envelope can be initiated without GTP by an exogenous bacterial PtdIns-specific phospholipase C (PI-PLC) which hydrolyzes PtdIns to form diacylglycerides and inositol 1-phosphate. This PI-PLC hydrolyzes a subset of sea urchin membrane vesicle PtdIns into diglycerides enriched in long chain, polyunsaturated species as revealed by a novel liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis. Large unilammelar vesicles (LUVs) enriched in PtdIns can substitute for MV1 in PI-PLC induced nuclear envelope formation. Moreover, MV1 prehydrolyzed with PI-PLC and washed to remove inositols leads to spontaneous nuclear envelope formation with MV2 without further PI-PLC treatment. LUVs enriched in diacylglycerol mimic prehydrolyzed MV1. These results indicate that production of membrane-destabilizing diglycerides in membranes enriched in PtdIns may facilitate membrane fusion in a natural membrane system and suggest that MV1, which binds only to two places on the sperm nucleus, may initiate fusion locally.

+view abstract The Journal of biological chemistry , PMID: 16216883 2005

PD Evans, B Maqueira

Insect octopamine receptors are G-protein coupled receptors. They can be coupled to second messenger pathways to mediate either increases or decreases in intracellular cyclic AMP levels or the generation of intracellular calcium signals. Insect octopamine receptors were originally classified on the basis of second messenger changes induced in a variety of intact tissue preparations. Such a classification system is problematic if more than one receptor subtype is present in the same tissue preparation. Recent progress on the cloning and characterization in heterologous cell systems of octopamine receptors from Drosophila and other insects is reviewed. A new classification system for insect octopamine receptors into "alpha-adrenergic-like octopamine receptors (OctalphaRs)", "beta-adrenergic-like octopamine receptors (OctbetaRs)" and "octopamine/tyramine (or tyraminergic) receptors" is proposed based on their similarities in structure and in signalling properties with vertebrate adrenergic receptors. In future studies on the molecular basis of octopamine signalling in individual tissues it will be essential to identify the relative expression levels of the different classes of octopamine receptor present. In addition, it will be essential to identify if co-expression of such receptors in the same cells results in the formation of oligomeric receptors with specific emergent pharmacological and signalling properties.

+view abstract Invertebrate neuroscience : IN , PMID: 16211376 2005

Rugg-Gunn PJ, Ferguson-Smith AC, Pedersen RA Epigenetics

In order to exploit the exceptional potential of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) in cell-replacement therapies, the genetic and epigenetic factors controlling early human development must be better defined. Limitations in human embryonic material restrict the scale of studies that can be performed, and therefore an in vitro model in which to study epigenetic regulation in human preimplantation cell types would be desirable. HESCs could provide such a model, but since they are derived from a stage in mammalian development when the genome is undergoing global epigenetic remodelling, it is unclear whether their epigenetic status would be stable or subject to variation. Herein, we discuss recent work that examines allele-specific imprinted gene expression and methylation patterns, thereby demonstrating that hESCs maintain a substantial degree of epigenetic stability during culture. Therefore, we suggest that hESCs could provide a model for studying epigenetic regulation during the early stages of human cellular pluripotency and differentiation. Furthermore, we propose specific experiments using such a model to address important questions pertaining to epigenetic mechanisms of certain human disorders.

+view abstract Cell cycle (Georgetown, Tex.) , PMID: 16205114 2005

Caraux A, Kim N, Bell SE, Zompi S, Ranson T, Lesjean-Pottier S, Garcia-Ojeda ME, Turner M, Colucci F Immunology

Phospholipase C-gamma2 (PLC-gamma2) is a key component of signal transduction in leukocytes. In natural killer (NK) cells, PLC-gamma2 is pivotal for cellular cytotoxicity; however, it is not known which steps of the cytolytic machinery it regulates. We found that PLC-gamma2-deficient NK cells formed conjugates with target cells and polarized the microtubule-organizing center, but failed to secrete cytotoxic granules, due to defective calcium mobilization. Consequently, cytotoxicity was completely abrogated in PLC-gamma2-deficient cells, regardless of whether targets expressed NKG2D ligands, missed self major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I, or whether NK cells were stimulated with IL-2 and antibodies specific for NKR-P1C, CD16, CD244, Ly49D, and Ly49H. Defective secretion was specific to cytotoxic granules because release of IFN-gamma on stimulation with IL-12 was normal. Plcg2-/- mice could not reject MHC class I-deficient lymphoma cells nor could they control CMV infection, but they effectively contained Listeria monocytogenes infection. Our results suggest that exocytosis of cytotoxic granules, but not cellular polarization toward targets, depends on intracellular calcium rise during NK cell cytotoxicity. In vivo, PLC-gamma2 regulates selective facets of innate immunity because it is essential for NK cell responses to malignant and virally infected cells but not to bacterial infections.

+view abstract Blood , PMID: 16204312 2006

Rothenburg S, Haag F, Koch-Nolte F, Carter C, Graham M, Butcher GW

ART2 (RT6) belongs to the family of mono-ADP-ribosyltransferases (ARTs). ART2 is a T-cell differentiation marker expressed by the majority of mature peripheral T cells in the rat. The two known ART2 allotypes display approximately 95% amino acid identity. We sequenced the ART2 coding regions from 18 inbred rat strains and found two additional alleles, termed Art2 ( a2 ) and Art2 ( b2 ). Monoclonal antibody Gy12/61 specifically reacted with Art2 ( a2 ) but not Art2 ( a1 ) lymph node cells. Expression of ART2 allotypes in Jurkat cells confirmed this specificity. A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay using restriction fragment length polymorphisms is described, which allows the easy discrimination of Art2 alleles. All four laboratory rat alleles, as well as an additional sequence variant, were found amongst 18 wild rat DNA samples. PCR analysis confirmed the selective presence of a rodent identifier (ID) element in the Art2 ( a ) but not the Art2 ( b ) alleles in all rats studied. Analysis of Art2 ( a1 ) and Art2 ( b2 ) genes showed greater divergence in coding than in non-coding regions. Together with the finding of a high number of non-synonymous mutations leading mostly to non-conservative amino acid substitutions clustered on the side facing away from the cell surface, this suggests that the Art2 polymorphism has been subject to selection.

+view abstract Immunogenetics , PMID: 16195877 2005

A Bilancio, K Okkenhaug, M Camps, JL Emery, T Ruckle, C Rommel, B Vanhaesebroeck Immunology

Mouse gene-targeting studies have documented a central role of the p110delta isoform of phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) in B-cell development and function. A defect in B-cell antigen receptor (BCR) signaling is key to this B-cell phenotype. Here we further characterize this signaling defect and report that a p110delta-selective small molecule inhibitor mirrors the effect of genetic inactivation of p110delta in BCR signaling. p110delta activity is indispensable for BCR-induced DNA synthesis and phosphorylation of Akt/protein kinase B (PKB), forkhead transcription factor/forkhead box O3a (FOXO3a), and p70 S6 kinase (p70 S6K), with modest effects on the phosphorylation of glycogen synthase kinase 3 alpha/beta (GSK3alpha/beta) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk). The PI3K-dependent component of intracellular calcium mobilization also completely relies on p110delta catalytic activity. Resting B cells with inactive p110delta fail to enter the cell cycle, correlating with an incapacity to up-regulate the expression of cyclins D2, A, and E, and to phosphorylate the retinoblastoma protein (Rb). p110delta is also critical for interleukin 4 (IL-4)-induced phosphorylation of Akt/PKB and FOXO3a, and protection from apoptosis. Taken together, these data show that defects observed in p110delta mutant mice are not merely a consequence of altered B-cell differentiation, and emphasize the potential utility of p110delta as a drug target in autoimmune diseases in which B cells play a crucial role.

+view abstract Blood , PMID: 16179367 2006

David DC, Hoerndli F, Götz J Signalling

Transcriptomics and proteomics are increasingly applied to gain a mechanistic insight into neurodegenerative disorders. These techniques not only identify distinct, differentially expressed mRNAs and proteins but are also employed to dissect signaling pathways and reveal networks by using an integrated approach. In part I of this back-to-back review, technical aspects are discussed: in the transcriptomics section, which includes enrichment by laser microcapture dissection, we comment on qRT-PCR, SAGE, subtractive hybridization, differential display and microarrays, including software packages. In the proteomics section we discuss two-dimensional (2D) gel electrophoresis, liquid chromatography, methods to label and enrich specific proteins or peptides, and different types of mass spectrometers. These tools have been applied to a range of neurodegenerative disorders and are discussed and integrated in part II (Functional Genomics meets neurodegenerative disorders. Part II: application and data integration).

+view abstract Progress in neurobiology , PMID: 16168556

Wells CM, Bhavsar PJ, Evans IR, Vigorito E, Turner M, Tybulewicz V, Ridley AJ Immunology

Vav family proteins act as guanine nucleotide exchange factors for Rho family proteins, which are known to orchestrate cytoskeletal changes and cell migration in response to extracellular stimuli. Using mice deficient for Vav1, Vav2 and/or Vav3, overlapping and isoform-specific functions of the three Vav proteins have been described in various hematopoietic cell types, but their roles in regulating cell morphology and migration have not been studied in detail. To investigate whether Vav isoforms have redundant or unique functions in regulating adhesion and migration, we investigated the properties of Vav1-deficient and Vav2-deficient macrophages. Both Vav1-deficient and Vav2-deficient cells have a smaller adhesive area; yet, only Vav1-deficient cells have a reduced migration speed, which coincides with a lower level of microtubules. Vav2-deficient macrophages display a high level of constitutive membrane ruffling, but neither Vav1 nor Vav2 is required for colony stimulating factor-1-induced membrane ruffling and cell spreading. Our results suggest that the migration speed of macrophages is regulated independently of spread area or membrane ruffling and that Vav1 is selectively required to maintain a normal migration speed.

+view abstract Experimental cell research , PMID: 16137676 2005

Reik W, Murrell A, Lewis A, Mitsuya K, Umlauf D, Dean W, Higgins M, Feil R Epigenetics

+view abstract Cold Spring Harbor symposia on quantitative biology , PMID: 16117630 2004

Glassford J, Vigorito E, Soeiro I, Madureira PA, Zoumpoulidou G, Brosens JJ, Turner M, Lam EW Immunology

Induction of cyclin D2 is essential for mediating cell cycle entry in B cells activated by BCR cross-linking. In the present study we show that, like B lymphocytes lacking cyclin D2, the p85alpha subunit of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) or other components of the B cell signalosome, p110delta-null B cells fail to induce cyclin D2 and enter early G1 but not S phase of the cell cycle. The inhibitors of PI3K activity, LY294002 and Wortmannin, also abrogate cyclin D2 induction by BCR cross-linking, confirming that the class IA PI3K is necessary for cyclin D2 induction in response to BCR stimulation. Furthermore, using both p85alpha-null and p110delta-null B cells and inhibitors of PI3K, this study demonstrates for the first time, that BCR cross-linking induces cyclin D2 mRNA expression via transcriptional activation of the cyclin D2 promoter and that this transcriptional activation of cyclin D2 requires PI3K activity. Moreover, we identify a region between nucleotides -1624 and -1303 of the cyclin D2 promoter containing elements responsive to anti-IgM, which are PI3K dependent. Further characterisation of signalling intermediates downstream of the BCR revealed a perturbation of MAPK signalling pathways in p85alpha-null and p110delta-null B cells, and our data suggests that cross-talk exists between the PI3K and JNK pathways.

+view abstract European journal of immunology , PMID: 16114097 2005

J Domin, L Harper, D Aubyn, M Wheeler, O Florey, D Haskard, M Yuan, D Zicha Signalling

The biological and pathophysiological significance of class II phosphoinositide 3-kinase enzyme expression currently remains unclear. Using an in vitro scrape wound assay and time-lapse video microscopy, we demonstrate that cell motility is increased in cultures expressing recombinant PI3K-C2beta enzyme. In addition, overexpression of PI3K-C2beta transiently decreased cell adhesion, stimulated the formation of cytoplasmic processes, and decreased the rate of cell proliferation. Consistent with these observations, expression of PI3K-C2beta also decreased expression of alpha4 beta1 integrin subunits. Using asynchronous cultures, we show that endogenous PI3K-C2beta is present in lamellipodia of motile cells. When cells expressing recombinant PI3K-C2beta were plated onto fibronectin, cortical actin staining increased markedly and actin rich lamellipodia and filopodia became evident. Overexpression of a 2xFYVE(Hrs) domain fusion protein abolished this response demonstrating that the effect of PI3K-C2beta on the reorganization of actin filaments is dependent upon PtdIns3P. Finally, overexpression of PI3K-C2beta increased GTP loading of Cdc42. Our data demonstrates for the first time, that PI3K-C2beta plays a regulatory role in cell motility and that the mechanism by which it reorganizes the actin cytoskeleton is dependent upon PtdIns3P production.

+view abstract Journal of cellular physiology , PMID: 16113997 2005

C Dion, C Carter, L Hepburn, WJ Coadwell, G Morgan, M Graham, N Pugh, G Anderson, GW Butcher, JR Miller Immunology , Flow Cytometry

Reports suggest that two members of the novel immune-associated nucleotide (Ian) GTPase family, Ian1 and Ian5, play roles in T cell development. We performed real-time PCR analysis of the expression of Ian genes of the rat during T cell maturation, in macrophages and in cell lines. We found that all of the genes were expressed at relatively low levels at the early double-negative thymocyte stage but were expressed more strongly at later cell stages. Our study also revealed the fact that the previously reported Ian9, Ian10 and Ian11 genes are, instead, parts of a single gene for which we retain the name Ian9, potentially encoding a GTPase with a highly unusual triplicated structure. Antisera were developed against both Ian1 and Ian9. We established that Ian9 is produced as an approximately 75-kDa protein in both T cells and thymocytes. We observed that levels of both Ian1 and Ian9 proteins are profoundly reduced in T cells from lymphopenic rats as compared with wild-type rats. It was demonstrated that thymocytes and B cells from lymphopenic rats (Ian5 null) did not show enhanced sensitivity to gamma-irradiation-induced apoptosis.

+view abstract International immunology , PMID: 16103028 2005

L Chakalova, E Debrand, JA Mitchell, CS Osborne, P Fraser

As the relationship between nuclear structure and function begins to unfold, a picture is emerging of a dynamic landscape that is centred on the two main processes that execute the regulated use and propagation of the genome. Rather than being subservient enzymatic activities, the replication and transcriptional machineries provide potent forces that organize the genome in three-dimensional nuclear space. Their activities provide opportunities for epigenetic changes that are required for differentiation and development. In addition, they impose physical constraints on the genome that might help to shape its evolution.

+view abstract Nature reviews. Genetics , PMID: 16094312 2005