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Author: Yasushi Enokido (18)


Jul
2017

The phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/AKT/mTOR signaling pathway is critical for cellular growth and metabolism. Recently, mosaic or segmental overgrowth, a clinical condition caused by heterozygous somatic activating mutations in PIK3CA, was established as PIK3CA-related overgrowth spectrum (PROS). In this study, we report a Japanese female diagnosed with PROS, who presented with hyperplasia of the lower extremities, macrodactyly, multiple lipomatosis, and sparse hair.

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Feb
2014

Niemann-Pick disease type C (NPC) is an autosomal recessive neurovisceral lipid storage disorder. Two disease-causing genes (NPC1 and NPC2) have been identified. NPC is characterized by neuronal and glial lipid storage and NFTs.

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Feb
2012

During the past two decades, the fundamental mechanism of neuronal cell death has been explained by building on the knowledge obtained from studies of other cell types, such as immune cells and cancer cells. However, recent advances in biotechnology allow us to show much more detailed molecular mechanisms which can reveal characteristics of neuronal cell death distinguished from other cell types, and pathogenesis of neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders, that may help to develop treatment for various neurological disorders. Here, I will review the recent advances in the research on neuronal cell death associated with neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders focusing on the defect of DNA repair and of neuron-astrocyte metabolic interaction.

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May
2010

DNA repair defends against naturally occurring or disease-associated DNA damage during the long lifespan of neurons and is implicated in polyglutamine disease pathology. In this study, we report that mutant huntingtin (Htt) expression in neurons causes double-strand breaks (DSBs) of genomic DNA, and Htt further promotes DSBs by impairing DNA repair. We identify Ku70, a component of the DNA damage repair complex, as a mediator of the DNA repair dysfunction in mutant Htt-expressing neurons.

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Nov
2008

HMGB1 is an evolutionarily conserved non-histone chromatin-associated protein with key roles in maintenance of nuclear homeostasis; however, the function of HMGB1 in the brain remains largely unknown. Recently, we found that the reduction of nuclear HMGB1 protein level in the nucleus associates with DNA double-strand break (DDSB)-mediated neuronal damage in Huntington's disease [M.L.

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Jul
2008

Selective vulnerability of neurons is a critical feature of neurodegenerative diseases, but the underlying molecular mechanisms remain largely unknown. We here report that Omi/HtrA2, a mitochondrial protein regulating survival and apoptosis of cells, decreases selectively in striatal neurons that are most vulnerable to the Huntington's disease (HD) pathology. In microarray analysis, Omi/HtrA2 was decreased under the expression of mutant huntingtin (htt) in striatal neurons but not in cortical or cerebellar neurons.

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Jul
2007

CBS is a vitamin B6-dependent transsulfuration enzyme needed to synthesize cysteine from methionine, catalyzing the condensation of serine with homocysteine to form cystathionine. A deficiency of CBS causes homocystinuria (MIM 236200), one of the most prevalent inborn errors, characterized by mental retardation, seizures, psychiatric disturbances, skeletal abnormalities and vascular disorders. Patients with CBS deficiency exhibit a major biochemical abnormality, hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy), a condition associated with highly elevated plasma homocysteine levels.

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Apr
2007

Nuclear dysfunction is a key feature of the pathology of polyglutamine (polyQ) diseases. It has been suggested that mutant polyQ proteins impair functions of nuclear factors by interacting with them directly in the nucleus. However, a systematic analysis of quantitative changes in soluble nuclear proteins in neurons expressing mutant polyQ proteins has not been performed.

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Jan
2007

The reason why vulnerabilities to mutant polyglutamine (polyQ) proteins are different among neuronal subtypes is mostly unknown. In this study, we compared the gene expression profiles of three types of primary neurons expressing huntingtin (htt) or ataxin-1. We found that heat shock protein 70 (hsp70), a well known chaperone molecule protecting neurons in the polyQ pathology, was dramatically upregulated only by mutant htt and selectively in the granule cells of the cerebellum.

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Oct
2006

Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) is a nuclear protein homologous to the high-mobility group B1 family of proteins. It is known to be released from cells and to act as a trophic factor for dividing cells. In this study HDGF was increased in spinal motor neurons of a mouse model of motor neuron degeneration, polyglutamine-tract-binding protein-1 (PQBP-1) transgenic mice, before onset of degeneration.

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Feb
2006

Transcriptional disturbance is implicated in the pathology of polyglutamine diseases, including Huntington's disease (HD). However, it is unknown whether transcriptional repression leads to neuronal death or what forms that death might take. We found transcriptional repression-induced atypical death (TRIAD) of neurons to be distinct from apoptosis, necrosis, or autophagy.

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Dec
2005

Down's syndrome (DS) or trisomy 21 is the most common genetic cause of mental retardation, and adults with DS develop Alzheimer type of disease (AD). Cystathionine beta-synthase (CBS) is encoded on chromosome 21 and deficiency in its activity causes homocystinuria, the most common inborn error of sulfur amino acid metabolism and characterized by mental retardation and vascular disease. Here, we show that the levels of CBS in DS brains are approximately three times greater than those in the normal individuals.

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Dec
2004

Hyperhomocysteinemia (HHCY) is a consequence of impaired methionine/cysteine metabolism and is caused by deficiency of vitamins and/or enzymes such as cystathionine beta-synthase (CBS). Although HHCY is an important and independent risk factor for cardiovascular diseases that are commonly associated with hepatic steatosis, the mechanism by which homocysteine promotes the development of fatty liver is poorly understood. CBS-deficient (CBS(-/-)) mice were previously generated by targeted deletion of the Cbs gene and exhibit pathological features similar to HHCY patients, including endothelial dysfunction and hepatic steatosis.

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Apr
2004

The modifier of cell adhesion protein (MOCA), or Dock3, initially identified as presenilin-binding protein (PBP), belongs to the Dock180 family of proteins and is localized specifically in neurons. Here we demonstrate that MOCA binds to Rac1 and enhances its activity, which leads to the activation of c-Jun NH(2)-terminal kinase (JNK) and causes changes in cell morphology. Farnesylated MOCA, which is localized in the plasma membrane, enhances the activation of Rac1 and JNK more markedly than wild-type MOCA, and cells expressing farnesylated MOCA show flattened morphology similar to those expressing a constitutive active mutant of Rac1, Rac1Q61L.

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Oct
2003

The molecular mechanism of Bcl-2 phosphorylation and its relationship to Bax is largely unknown. Here we show that the phosphorylation of Bcl-2 is involved in the intracellular translocation of Bax from cytosol to mitochondria in NO-induced neuronal apoptosis. We examined how the phosphorylation of Bcl-2 is regulated during the apoptosis and found it to be mediated by the activation of p38 and ERK, members of the MAPK superfamily.

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Jun
2003

The amyloid precursor protein (APP) is a transmembrane protein whose abnormal processing is associated with the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. In this study, we examined the expression and role of cell-associated APP in primary dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. When dissociated DRG cells prepared from mouse embryos were treated with nerve growth factor (NGF), neuronal APP levels were transiently elevated.

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May
2002

PQBP-1 was isolated on the basis of its interaction with polyglutamine tracts. In this study, using in vitro and in vivo assays, we show that the association between ataxin-1 and PQBP-1 is positively influenced by expanded polyglutamine sequences. In cell lines, interaction between the two molecules induces apoptotic cell death.

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