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Author: Hiroshi Sagara (63)


Feb
2018

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a Gram-negative microaerophilic bacterial pathogen which colonizes the stomach of more than half the human population, and is linked to chronic gastritis, peptic ulcers, and gastric cancer. Spiral-shaped H.

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Jan
2018

Influenza A and B viruses have eight-segmented, single-stranded, negative-sense RNA genomes, whereas influenza C and D viruses have seven-segmented genomes. Each genomic RNA segment exists in the form of a ribonucleoprotein complex (RNP) in association with nucleoproteins and an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase in virions. Influenza D virus was recently isolated from swine and cattle, but its morphology is not fully studied.

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Dec
1969

The influenza A virus genome is composed of eight single-stranded negative-sense RNAs. Eight distinct viral RNA segments (vRNAs) are selectively packaged into progeny virions, with eight vRNAs in ribonucleoprotein complexes (RNPs) arranged in a specific "1+7" pattern, that is, one central RNP surrounded by seven RNPs. Here we report the genome packaging of an artificially generated seven-segment virus that lacks the hemagglutinin (HA) vRNA.

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Jul
2017

Because several studies have shown that exogenous miR-199a has antiviral effects against various viruses, including herpesviruses, we examined how miR-199a exerts its antiviral effects using epithelial tumour cell lines infected with herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1). We found that both miR-199a-5p and -3p impair the secondary envelopment of HSV-1 by suppressing their common target, ARHGAP21, a Golgi-localized GTPase-activating protein for Cdc42. We further found that the trans-cisternae of the Golgi apparatus are a potential membrane compartment for secondary envelopment.

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Sep
2017

VP26 is a herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) small capsomere-interacting protein. In this study, we investigated the function of VP26 in HSV-1-infected cells with the following results. (i) The VP26 null mutation significantly impaired incorporation of minor capsid protein UL25 into nucleocapsids (type C capsids) in the nucleus.

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Jun
2017

Pericytes are believed to originate from either mesenchymal or neural crest cells. It has recently been reported that pericytes play important roles in the central nervous system (CNS) by regulating blood-brain barrier homeostasis and blood flow at the capillary level. However, the origin of CNS microvascular pericytes and the mechanism of their recruitment remain unknown.

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Dec
1969

Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) has essential roles in photoreceptor cells in the retina and is therefore crucial to healthy vision. Although the influence of dietary DHA on visual acuity is well known and the retina has an abundance of DHA-containing phospholipids (PL-DHA), the mechanisms associated with DHA's effects on visual function are unknown. We previously identified lysophosphatidic acid acyltransferase 3 (LPAAT3) as a PL-DHA biosynthetic enzyme.

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Sep
2016

Tardigrades, also known as water bears, are small aquatic animals. Some tardigrade species tolerate almost complete dehydration and exhibit extraordinary tolerance to various physical extremes in the dehydrated state. Here we determine a high-quality genome sequence of Ramazzottius varieornatus, one of the most stress-tolerant tardigrade species.

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Dec
1969

The genomes of influenza A and B viruses comprise eight segmented, single-stranded, negative-sense viral RNAs (vRNAs). Although segmentation of the virus genome complicates the packaging of infectious progeny into virions, it provides an evolutionary benefit in that it allows viruses to exchange vRNAs with other strains. Influenza A viruses are believed to package their eight different vRNAs in a specific manner.

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Jul
2016

Methylation of histone tails plays a pivotal role in the regulation of a wide range of biological processes. SET and MYND domain-containing protein (SMYD) is a methyltransferase, five family members of which have been identified in humans. SMYD1, SMYD2, SMYD3, and SMYD4 have been found to play critical roles in carcinogenesis and/or the development of heart and skeletal muscle.

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Apr
2015

NF-κB is a transcription factor regulating expression of more than 500 genes, and its dysfunction leads to the autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. In malignant cancer cells, NF-κB is constitutively activated. Thus the elucidation of mechanisms for NF-κB regulation is important for the establishment of therapeutic treatment caused by incorrect NF-κB responses.

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Oct
2015

Us3 protein kinases encoded by herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) and 2 (HSV-2) play important roles in viral replication and pathogenicity. To investigate type-specific differences between HSV-1 Us3 and HSV-2 Us3 in cells infected by viruses with all the same viral gene products except for their Us3 kinases, we constructed and characterized a recombinant HSV-1 in which its Us3 gene was replaced with the HSV-2 Us3 gene. Replacement of HSV-1 Us3 with HSV-2 Us3 had no apparent effect on viral growth in cell cultures or on the range of proteins phosphorylated by Us3.

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Sep
2015

Schwann cells (SCs) myelinate peripheral neurons to promote the rapid conduction of action potentials, and the process of myelination is known to be regulated by signals from axons to SCs. Given that SC mitochondria are one of the potential regulators of myelination, we investigated whether SC mitochondria are regulated by axonal signaling. Here, we show a purinergic mechanism that sends information from neurons to SC mitochondria during myelination.

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Dec
1969

Radiation therapy (RT) is pivotal in the treatment of many central nervous system (CNS) pathologies; however, exposure to RT in children is associated with a higher risk of secondary CNS tumors. Although recent research interest has focused on the reparative and therapeutic role of microglia, their recruitment following RT has not been elucidated, especially in the developing CNS. Here, we investigated the spatiotemporal dynamics of microglia during tissue repair in the irradiated embryonic medaka brain by whole-mount in situ hybridization using a probe for Apolipoprotein E (ApoE), a marker for activated microglia in teleosts.

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Jul
2015

Osteomodulin (OMD) is a member of the small leucine-rich repeat proteoglycan family, which is involved in the organization of the extracellular matrix. OMD is located in bone tissue and is reportedly important for bone mineralization. However, the details of OMD function in bone formation are poorly understood.

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Aug
2015

Herpesviruses have evolved a unique mechanism for nucleocytoplasmic transport of nascent nucleocapsids: the nucleocapsids bud through the inner nuclear membrane (INM; primary envelopment), and the enveloped nucleocapsids then fuse with the outer nuclear membrane (de-envelopment). Little is known about the molecular mechanism of herpesviral de-envelopment. We show here that the knockdown of both CD98 heavy chain (CD98hc) and its binding partner β1 integrin induced membranous structures containing enveloped herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) virions that are invaginations of the INM into the nucleoplasm and induced aberrant accumulation of enveloped virions in the perinuclear space and in the invagination structures.

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Feb
2015

Emerging lines of evidence have shown that extracellular vesicles (EVs) mediate cell-to-cell communication by exporting encapsulated materials, such as microRNAs (miRNAs), to target cells. Endothelial cell-derived EVs (E-EVs) are upregulated in circulating blood in different pathological conditions; however, the characteristics and the role of these E-EVs are not yet well understood. In vitro studies were conducted to determine the role of inflammation-induced E-EVs in the cell-to-cell communication between vascular endothelial cells and pericytes/vSMCs.

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May
2014

Herpesviruses have evolved a unique mechanism for nuclear egress of nascent progeny nucleocapsids: the nucleocapsids bud through the inner nuclear membrane into the perinuclear space between the inner and outer nuclear membranes (primary envelopment), and enveloped nucleocapsids then fuse with the outer nuclear membrane to release nucleocapsids into the cytoplasm (de-envelopment). We have shown that the herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) major virion structural protein UL47 (or VP13/VP14) is a novel regulator for HSV-1 nuclear egress. In particular, we demonstrated the following: (i) UL47 formed a complex(es) with HSV-1 proteins UL34, UL31, and/or Us3, which have all been reported to be critical for viral nuclear egress, and these viral proteins colocalized at the nuclear membrane in HSV-1-infected cells; (ii) the UL47-null mutation considerably reduced primary enveloped virions in the perinuclear space although capsids accumulated in the nucleus; and (iii) UL47 was detected in primary enveloped virions in the perinuclear space by immunoelectron microscopy.

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Dec
2013

Autophagy is a cellular self-catabolic process wherein organelles, macromolecules, and invading microbes are sequestered in autophagosomes that fuse with lysosomes. In this study, we uncover the role of nitric oxide (NO) as a signaling molecule for autophagy induction via its downstream mediator, 8-nitroguanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (8-nitro-cGMP). We found that 8-nitro-cGMP-induced autophagy is mediated by Lys63-linked polyubiquitination and that endogenous 8-nitro-cGMP promotes autophagic exclusion of invading group A Streptococcus (GAS) from cells.

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Jan
2014

RNAi-mediated suppression of the endogenous storage proteins in MucoRice-CTB-RNAi seeds affects not only the levels of overexpressed CTB and RAG2 allergen, but also the localization of CTB and RAG2. A purification-free rice-based oral cholera vaccine (MucoRice-CTB) was previously developed by our laboratories using a cholera toxin B-subunit (CTB) overexpression system. Recently, an advanced version of MucoRice-CTB was developed (MucoRice-CTB-RNAi) through the use of RNAi to suppress the production of the endogenous storage proteins 13-kDa prolamin and glutelin, so as to increase CTB expression.

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Dec
2013

The influenza A virus possesses an eight-segmented, negative-sense, single-stranded RNA genome (vRNA). Each vRNA segment binds to multiple copies of viral nucleoproteins and a small number of heterotrimeric polymerase complexes to form a rod-like ribonucleoprotein complex (RNP), which is essential for the transcription and replication of the vRNAs. However, how the RNPs are organized within the progeny virion is not fully understood.

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Sep
2013

Rotavirus-induced diarrhea is a life-threatening disease in immunocompromised individuals and in children in developing countries. We have developed a system for prophylaxis and therapy against rotavirus disease using transgenic rice expressing the neutralizing variable domain of a rotavirus-specific llama heavy-chain antibody fragment (MucoRice-ARP1). MucoRice-ARP1 was produced at high levels in rice seeds using an overexpression system and RNAi technology to suppress the production of major rice endogenous storage proteins.

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Jun
2013

Highly topographic organization of neural circuits exists for the regulation of various brain functions in corticobasal ganglia circuits. Although neural circuit-specific refinement during synapse development is essential for the execution of particular neural functions, the molecular and cellular mechanisms for synapse refinement are largely unknown. Here, we show that protocadherin 17 (PCDH17), one of the nonclustered δ2-protocadherin family members, is enriched along corticobasal ganglia synapses in a zone-specific manner during synaptogenesis and regulates presynaptic assembly in these synapses.

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Dec
1969

Sepsis is a major clinical challenge and septic encephalopathy is its nasty complication. The pathogenesis and underlying mechanisms of septic encephalopathy are not well understood. This study sought to fully characterize sepsis-associated biochemical and histopathological changes in brains of mice after cecal ligation and puncture, regarded as a highly clinically relevant animal model of polymicrobial sepsis.

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Aug
2013

Polypyrimidine tract-binding protein (PTB) is a well-characterized RNA-binding protein and known to be preferentially expressed in neural stem cells (NSCs) in the central nervous system; however, its role in NSCs in the developing brain remains unclear. To explore the role of PTB in embryonic NSCs in vivo, Nestin-Cre-mediated conditional Ptb knockout mice were generated for this study. In the mutant forebrain, despite the depletion of PTB protein, neither abnormal neurogenesis nor flagrant morphological abnormalities were observed at embryonic day 14.

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Jan
2012

The influenza A virus genome consists of eight single-stranded negative-sense RNA (vRNA) segments. Although genome segmentation provides advantages such as genetic reassortment, which contributes to the emergence of novel strains with pandemic potential, it complicates the genome packaging of progeny virions. Here we elucidate, using electron tomography, the three-dimensional structure of ribonucleoprotein complexes (RNPs) within progeny virions.

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Mar
2012

The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that obese diabetic mice exhibit marked skin fragility, which is caused by increased oxidative stress and increased matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) gene expression in the subcutaneous adipose tissue. Scanning electron microscopy of skin samples from Tsumura-Suzuki obese diabetic (TSOD) mice revealed thinner collagen bundles, and decreased density and convolution of the collagen fibres. Furthermore, skin tensile strength measurements confirmed that the dorsal skin of TSOD mice was more fragile to tensile force than that of non-obese mice.

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Nov
2011

The formation and refinement of synaptic connections are key steps of neural development to establish elaborate brain networks. To investigate the functional role of protein tyrosine phosphatase (PTP) σ, we employed an olfactory sensory neuron (OSN)-specific gene manipulation system in combination with in vivo imaging of transparent zebrafish embryos. Knockdown of PTPσ enhanced the accumulation of synaptic vesicles in the axon terminals of OSNs.

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Nov
2011

Negatively stained influenza virions sometimes show irregular morphology and are often referred to as pleomorphic. However, this irregular morphology has not been visualized when ultrathin-section transmission and scanning electron microscopies are used. This study focused on the effects of ultracentrifugation on influenza A virion morphology, as negative staining often involves ultracentrifugation to concentrate or purify virions.

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Nov
2011

The impact of quorum sensing (QS) in in vivo models of infection has been widely investigated, but there are no descriptions for ischemic wound infection. To explore the role of QS in Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the establishment of ischemic wound infection, we challenged a pressure ulcer model in rats with the PAO-1, PAO-1 derivatives ΔlasIΔrhlI and ΔlasRΔrhlR strains, which cannot induce the virulence factor under QS control, thus the reduced tissue destruction was expended in these mutant strains. However unexpectedly, on postwounding day 3, the inflammatory responses in the three groups were similarly severe and the numbers of bacteria in tissue samples did not differ among the three strains.

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Apr
2011

In this study, we demonstrated a new airway Ag sampling site by analyzing tissue sections of the murine nasal passages. We revealed the presence of respiratory M cells, which had the ability to take up OVA and recombinant Salmonella typhimurium expressing GFP, in the turbinates covered with single-layer epithelium. These M cells were also capable of taking up respiratory pathogen group A Streptococcus after nasal challenge.

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Sep
2010

 The collagen fiber network plays a key role regarding mechanical properties that maintain tissue shape, absorb stress, and recover from tissue deformation. The purpose of this study was to reveal the effects of hyperglycemia on the process of ulceration and wound healing, and on the structure of dermal collagen network.
A spontaneous type 2 diabetic, non-obese rat without hyperlipidemia (GK rat) was used.

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Jun
2010

When Ebola virus nucleoprotein (NP) is expressed in mammalian cells, it assembles into helical structures. Here, the recombinant NP helix purified from cells expressing NP was characterized biochemically and morphologically. We found that the recombinant NP helix is associated with non-viral RNA, which is not protected from RNase digestion and that the morphology of the helix changes depending on the environmental salt concentration.

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Feb
2010

Nitrogen-containing bisphosphonates are pyrophosphate analogs that have long been the preferred prescription for treating osteoporosis. Although these drugs are considered inhibitors of prenylation and are believed to exert their effects on bone resorption by disrupting the signaling pathways downstream of prenylated small GTPases, this explanation seems to be insufficient. Because other classes of prenylation inhibitors have recently emerged as potential antiviral therapeutic agents, we first investigated here the effects of bisphosphonates on simian virus 40 and adenovirus infections and, to our surprise, found that viral infections are suppressed by bisphosphonates through a prenylation-independent pathway.

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Oct
2009

The eye is protected by the ocular immunosurveillance system. We show that tear duct-associated lymphoid tissue (TALT) is located in the mouse lacrimal sac and shares immunological characteristics with mucosa-associated lymphoid tissues (MALTs), including the presence of M cells and immunocompetent cells for antigen uptake and subsequent generation of mucosal immune responses against ocularly encountered antigens and bacteria such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Initiation of TALT genesis began postnatally; it occurred even in germ-free conditions and was independent of signaling through organogenesis regulators, including inhibitor of DNA binding/differentiation 2, retinoic acid-related orphan receptor gammat, lymphotoxin (LT) alpha1beta2-LTbetaR, and lymphoid chemokines (CCL19, CCL21, and CXCL13).

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Jun
2009

Us3 is a serine/threonine protein kinase encoded by herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1). We recently identified serine at Us3 position 147 (Ser-147) as a physiological phosphorylation site of Us3 (A. Kato, M.

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May
2009

Herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) enters cells either via fusion of the virion envelope and host cell plasma membrane or via endocytosis, depending on the cell type. In the study reported here, we investigated a viral entry pathway dependent on the paired immunoglobulin-like type 2 receptor alpha (PILRalpha), a recently identified entry coreceptor for HSV-1 that associates with viral envelope glycoprotein B (gB). Experiments using inhibitors of endocytic pathways and ultrastructural analyses of Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells transduced with PILRalpha showed that HSV-1 entry into these cells was via virus-cell fusion at the cell surface.

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May
2009

In mammals, the blockade of the phototransduction cascade causes loss of vision and, in some cases, degeneration of photoreceptors. However, the molecular mechanisms that link phototransduction with photoreceptor degeneration remain to be elucidated. Here, we report that a mutation in the gene encoding a central effector of the phototransduction cascade, cGMP phosphodiesterase 6alpha'-subunit (PDE6alpha'), affects not only the vision but also the survival of cone photoreceptors in zebrafish.

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Oct
2009

Bone regenerative medicine via tissue engineering is expected to be an alternative treatment for conventional autogenous bone graft, as it is less invasive. One of the best triads for bone engineering is bone marrow stromal cells, calcium phosphate ceramics, and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP). However, the optimal mixing conditions for BMP-induced osteoblasts and ceramic granules remain unclear.

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Jan
2009

To determine the extent to which hepatic stellate cell (HSC) activation contributes to liver fibrosis, it was found necessary to develop an alternative structural and functional stellate cell marker for in situ studies. Although several HSC markers have been reported, none of those are associated with particular HSC functions.
The present study was undertaken to examine whether lecithin:retinol acyltransferase (LRAT), the physiological retinol esterification enzyme of the liver, is a potential and relevant tissue marker for HSC.

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Jun
2008

The supportive functions of oligodendrocytes are required for the survival and development of axons, ensuring the organization of highly specialized neuronal networks in brain. Although the molecules that regulate oligodendrocyte differentiation in vitro have been identified, their roles in vivo are largely uncertain. Here we report that fyn deficiency on the C57BL/6 genetic background resulted in premature death, showing severe hydrocephalus with neonatal onset.

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Jun
2008

We report here the construction of a triply fluorescent-tagged herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) expressing capsid protein VP26, tegument protein VP22, and envelope protein gB as fusion proteins with monomeric yellow, red, and cyan fluorescent proteins, respectively. The recombinant virus enabled us to monitor the dynamics of these capsid, tegument, and envelope proteins simultaneously in the same live HSV-1-infected cells and to visualize single extracellular virions with three different fluorescent emissions. In Vero cells infected by the triply fluorescent virus, multiple cytoplasmic compartments were found to be induced close to the basal surfaces of the infected cells (the adhesion surfaces of the infected cells on the solid growth substrate).

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Mar
2008

Toward the end of mitosis, neighboring chromosomes gather closely to form a compact cluster. This is important for reassembling the nuclear envelope around the entire chromosome mass but not individual chromosomes. By analyzing mice and cultured cells lacking the expression of chromokinesin Kid/kinesin-10, we show that Kid localizes to the boundaries of anaphase and telophase chromosomes and contributes to the shortening of the anaphase chromosome mass along the spindle axis.

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Dec
2007

Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) destroys intestinal microvilli and suppresses phagocytosis by injecting effectors into infected cells through a type III secretion system (TTSS). EspB, a component of the TTSS, is also injected into the cytoplasm of host cells. However, the physiological functions of EspB within the host cell cytoplasm remain unclear.

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Nov
2007

Ebola virus (EBOV) VP24, together with nucleoprotein and VP35, is an essential component of viral RNA-protein complexes called "nucleocapsids." In this study, using a series of deletion mutants of VP24, we identified regions within VP24 that are important for the formation of nucleocapsid-like structures and determined that both termini of VP24 are essential for nucleocapsid formation. This finding advances our knowledge of both EBOV morphogenesis and the nature of VP24 molecules in nucleocapsid formation, which will be useful for the development of antiviral compounds.

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Nov
2007

ACTH (i.e., corticotropin) is the principal regulator of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis and stimulates steroidogenesis in the adrenal gland via the specific cell-surface melanocortin 2 receptor (MC2R).

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May
2007

N-WASP induces filopodial actin cytoskeleton through activation of the Arp2/3 complex. Here, we show that heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) regulates the structure of actin filaments induced by N-WASP and the Arp2/3 complex. HSP90 binds to N-WASP and to F-actin and bundles actin filaments.

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May
2007

The membrane-anchored matrix metalloproteinase MT1-MMP (also known as Mmp14) plays a key role in the angiogenic process, but the mechanisms underlying its spatiotemporal regulation in the in vivo setting have not been defined. Using whole-mount immunohistochemical analysis and the lacZ gene inserted into the Mmp14 gene, we demonstrate that MT1-MMP vascular expression in vivo is confined largely to the sprouting tip of neocapillary structures where endothelial cell proliferation and collagen degradation are coordinately localized. During angiogenesis in vitro, wherein endothelial cells are stimulated to undergo neovessel formation in the presence or absence of accessory mural cells, site-specific MT1-MMP expression is shown to be controlled by crosstalk between endothelial cells and vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC).

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Mar
2007

Blastocyst formation during mammalian preimplantation development is a unique developmental process that involves lineage segregation between the inner cell mass and the trophectoderm. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying blastocyst formation, we have functionally screened a subset of preimplantation embryo-associated transcripts by using small interfering RNA (siRNA) and identified Bysl (bystin-like) as an essential gene for this process. The development of embryos injected with Bysl siRNA was arrested just prior to blastocyst formation, resulting in a defect in trophectoderm differentiation.

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Apr
2007

Expression of Ebola virus nucleoprotein (NP) in mammalian cells leads to the formation of helical structures, which serve as a scaffold for the nucleocapsid. We recently found that NP binding with the matrix protein VP40 is important for nucleocapsid incorporation into virions (T. Noda, H.

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