Fundacion Ciencia y Vida

Villa Presidente Frei, Chile

Fundacion Ciencia y Vida

Villa Presidente Frei, Chile
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PubMed | Fundacion Ciencia y Vida, Medivation, Integral BioSciences Pvt. Ltd and Schrodinger
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry letters | Year: 2016

While enzalutamide and abiraterone are approved for treatment of metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC), approximately 20-40% of patients have no response to these agents. It has been stipulated that the lack of response and the development of secondary resistance to these drugs may be due to the presence of AR splice variants. HDAC6 has a role in regulating the androgen receptor (AR) by modulating heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) acetylation, which controls the nuclear localization and activation of the AR in androgen-dependent and independent scenarios. With dual-acting AR-HDAC6 inhibitors it should be possible to target patients who dont respond to enzalutamide. Herein, we describe the design, synthesis and biological evaluation of dual-acting compounds which target AR and are also specific towards HDAC6. Our efforts led to compound 10 which was found to have potent dual activity (HDAC6 IC


Alfaro I.E.,University of Santiago de Chile | Alfaro I.E.,University of Valparaíso | Varela-Nallar L.,University of Santiago de Chile | Varela-Nallar L.,Andrés Bello University | And 5 more authors.
Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience | Year: 2015

Wnt signaling regulates synaptic development and function and contributes to the fine-tuning of the molecular and morphological differentiation of synapses. We have shown previously that Wnt5a activates non-canonical Wnt signaling to stimulate postsynaptic differentiation in excitatory hippocampal neurons promoting the clustering of the postsynaptic scaffold protein PSD-95 and the development of dendritic spines. At least three different kinds of Wnt receptors have been associated with Wnt5a signaling: seven trans-membrane Frizzled receptors and the tyrosine kinase receptors Ryk and ROR2. We report here that ROR2 is distributed in the dendrites of hippocampal neurons in close proximity to synaptic contacts and it is contained in dendritic spine protrusions. We demonstrate that ROR2 is necessary to maintain dendritic spine number and morphological distribution in cultured hippocampal neurons. ROR2 overexpression increased dendritic spine growth without affecting the density of dendritic spine protrusions in a form dependent on its extracellular Wnt binding cysteine rich domain (CRD) and kinase domain. Overexpression of dominant negative ROR2 lacking the extracellular CRD decreased spine density and the proportion of mushroom like spines, while ROR2 lacking the C-terminal and active kinase domains only affected spine morphology. Our results indicate a crucial role of the ROR2 in the formation and maturation of the postsynaptic dendritic spines in hippocampal neurons. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.


PubMed | Fundacion Ciencia y Vida, University Pompeu Fabra, University of Santiago de Chile, University of Magallanes and Autonomous University of Chile
Type: | Journal: Molecular and cellular neurosciences | Year: 2015

Hippocampal synapses play a key role in memory and learning processes by inducing long-term potentiation and depression. Wnt signaling is essential in the development and maintenance of synapses via several mechanisms. We have previously found that Wnt5a induces the production of nitric oxide (NO), which modulates NMDA receptor expression in the postsynaptic regions of hippocampal neurons. Here, we report that Wnt5a selectively inhibits a voltage-gated K(+) current (Kv current) and increases synaptic activity in hippocampal slices. Further supporting a specific role for Wnt5a, the soluble Frizzled receptor protein (sFRP-2; a functional Wnt antagonist) fully inhibits the effects of Wnt5a. We additionally show that these responses to Wnt5a are mediated by activation of a ROR2 receptor and increased NO production because they are suppressed by the shRNA-mediated knockdown of ROR2 and by 7-nitroindazole, a specific inhibitor of neuronal NOS. Together, our results show that Wnt5a increases NO production by acting on ROR2 receptors, which in turn inhibit Kv currents. These results reveal a novel mechanism by which Wnt5a may regulate the excitability of hippocampal neurons.


Blaustein M.,CONICET | Perez-Munizaga D.,Fundacion Ciencia y Vida | Perez-Munizaga D.,Andrés Bello University | Sanchez M.A.,CONICET | And 6 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

The unfolded protein response (UPR) and the Akt signaling pathway share several regulatory functions and have the capacity to determine cell outcome under specific conditions. However, both pathways have largely been studied independently. Here, we asked whether the Akt pathway regulates the UPR. To this end, we used a series of chemical compounds that modulate PI3K/Akt pathway and monitored the activity of the three UPR branches: PERK, IRE1 and ATF6. The antiproliferative and antiviral drug Akt-IV strongly and persistently activated all three branches of the UPR. We present evidence that activation of PERK/eIF2α requires Akt and that PERK is a direct Akt target. Chemical activation of this novel Akt/PERK pathway by Akt-IV leads to cell death, which was largely dependent on the presence of PERK and IRE1. Finally, we show that hypoxia-induced activation of eIF2α requires Akt, providing a physiologically relevant condition for the interaction between Akt and the PERK branch of the UPR. These data suggest the UPR and the Akt pathway signal to one another as a means of controlling cell fate. © 2013 Blaustein et al.


Niechi I.,University of Chile | Silva E.,University of Chile | Cabello P.,University of Chile | Huerta H.,University of Chile | And 8 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2015

Endothelin-converting enzyme-1c (ECE-1c) is a membrane metalloprotease involved in endothelin-1 synthesis, which has been shown in vitro to have a role in breast, ovary and prostate cancer cell invasion. N-terminal end of ECE-1c displays three putative phosphorylation sites for the protein kinase CK2. We studied whether CK2 phosphorylates N-terminal end of ECE-1c as well as whether this has a role in migration and invasion of colon cancer cells. CK2 phosphorylated the N-terminal end of ECE-1c and this was precluded upon inhibition of CK2. Inhibition also led to diminished protein levels of both endogen ECE-1 or GFP-fused N-terminal end of ECE-1c in 293T embryonic and DLD-1 colon cancer cells, which highlighted the importance of this motif on UPS-dependent ECE-1c degradation. Full-length ECE-1c mutants designed either to mimic or abrogate CK2-phosphorylation displayed increased or decreased migration/invasion of colon cancer cells, respectively. Moreover, ECE-1c overexpression or its silencing with a siRNA led to increased or diminished cell migration/invasion, respectively. Altogether, these data show that CK2-increased ECE-1c protein stability is related to augmented migration and invasion of colon cancer cells, shedding light on a novel mechanism by which CK2 may promote malignant progression of this disease.


Bermales S.,Fundacion Ciencia y Vida | Soto M.M.,Fundacion Ciencia y Vida | Soto M.M.,Andrés Bello University | McCullagh E.,Fundacion Ciencia y Vida
Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience | Year: 2012

Protein-folding occurs in several intracellular locations including the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria. In normal conditions there is a balance between the levels of unfolded proteins and protein folding machinery. Disruption of homeostasis and an accumulation of unfolded proteins trigger stress responses, or unfolded protein responses (UPR), in these organelles. These pathways signal to increase the folding capacity, inhibit protein import or expression, increase protein degradation, and potentially trigger cell death. Many aging-related neurodegenerative diseases involve the accumulation of misfolded proteins in both the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria. The exact participation of the UPRs in the onset of neurodegeneration is unclear, but there is significant evidence for the alteration of these pathways in the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria. Here we will discuss the involvement of endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondrial stress and the possible contributions of the UPR in these organelles to the development of two neurodegenerative diseases, Parkinson's disease (PD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD). © 2012 Bernales, Soto and McCullagh.


Reyes D.,University of Chile | Salazar L.,University of Chile | Espinoza E.,University of Chile | Pereda C.,University of Chile | And 7 more authors.
British Journal of Cancer | Year: 2013

Background:Recently, we produced a tumour antigen-presenting cells (TAPCells) vaccine using a melanoma cell lysate, called TRIMEL, as an antigen source and an activation factor. Tumour antigen-presenting cells induced immunological responses and increased melanoma patient survival. Herein, we investigated the effect of TAPCells loaded with prostate cancer cell lysates (PCCL) as an antigen source, and TRIMEL as a dendritic cell (DC) activation factor; which were co-injected with the Concholepas concholepas haemocyanin (CCH) as an adjuvant on castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) patients.Methods:The lysate mix capacity, for inducing T-cell activation, was analysed by flow cytometry and Elispot. Delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) reaction against PCCL, frequency of CD8 + memory T cells (Tm) in blood and prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels in serum were measured in treated patients.Results:The lysate mix induced functional mature DCs that were capable of activating PCCL-specific T cells. No relevant adverse reactions were observed. Six out of 14 patients showed a significant decrease in levels of PSA. DTH + patients showed a prolonged PSA doubling-time after treatment. Expansion of functional central and effector CD8 + Tm were detected.Conclusion:Treatment of CRPC patients with lysate-loaded TAPCells and CCH as an adjuvant is safe: generating biochemical and memory immune responses. However, the limited number of cases requires confirmation in a phase II clinical trial. © 2013 Cancer Research UK.


PubMed | Fundacion Ciencia y Vida
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950) | Year: 2012

Dendritic cells (DCs) are responsible for priming T cells and for promoting their differentiation from naive T cells into appropriate effector cells. Emerging evidence suggests that neurotransmitters can modulate T cell-mediated immunity. However, the involvement of specific neurotransmitters or receptors remains poorly understood. In this study, we analyzed the role of dopamine in the regulation of DC function. We found that DCs express dopamine receptors as well as the machinery necessary to synthesize, store, and degrade dopamine. Notably, the expression of D5R decreased upon LPS-induced DC maturation. Deficiency of D5R on the surface of DCs impaired LPS-induced IL-23 and IL-12 production and consequently attenuated the activation and proliferation of Ag-specific CD4(+) T cells. To determine the relevance of D5R expressed on DCs in vivo, we studied the role of this receptor in the modulation of a CD4(+) T cell-driven autoimmunity model. Importantly, D5R-deficient DCs prophylactically transferred into wild-type recipients were able to reduce the severity of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Furthermore, mice transferred with D5R-deficient DCs displayed a significant reduction in the percentage of Th17 cells infiltrating the CNS without differences in the percentage of Th1 cells compared with animals transferred with wild-type DCs. Our findings demonstrate that by contributing to CD4(+) T cell activation and differentiation to Th17 phenotype, D5R expressed on DCs is able to modulate the development of an autoimmune response in vivo.


PubMed | Fundacion Ciencia y Vida and University of Chile
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Oncotarget | Year: 2016

Endothelin-converting enzyme-1c (ECE-1c) is a membrane metalloprotease involved in endothelin-1 synthesis, which has been shown in vitro to have a role in breast, ovary and prostate cancer cell invasion. N-terminal end of ECE-1c displays three putative phosphorylation sites for the protein kinase CK2. We studied whether CK2 phosphorylates N-terminal end of ECE-1c as well as whether this has a role in migration and invasion of colon cancer cells. CK2 phosphorylated the N-terminal end of ECE-1c and this was precluded upon inhibition of CK2. Inhibition also led to diminished protein levels of both endogen ECE-1 or GFP-fused N-terminal end of ECE-1c in 293T embryonic and DLD-1 colon cancer cells, which highlighted the importance of this motif on UPS-dependent ECE-1c degradation. Full-length ECE-1c mutants designed either to mimic or abrogate CK2-phosphorylation displayed increased or decreased migration/invasion of colon cancer cells, respectively. Moreover, ECE-1c overexpression or its silencing with a siRNA led to increased or diminished cell migration/invasion, respectively. Altogether, these data show that CK2-increased ECE-1c protein stability is related to augmented migration and invasion of colon cancer cells, shedding light on a novel mechanism by which CK2 may promote malignant progression of this disease.


PubMed | Fundacion Ciencia y Vida, Medivation Inc., Andrés Bello University and Pvt. Ltd.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: ACS medicinal chemistry letters | Year: 2016

The aberrant activation of B-cells has been implicated in several types of cancers and hematological disorders. BTK and PI3K are kinases responsible for B-cell signal transduction, and inhibitors of these enzymes have demonstrated clinical benefit in certain types of lymphoma. Simultaneous inhibition of these pathways could result in more robust responses or overcome resistance as observed in single agent use. We report a series of novel compounds that have low nanomolar potency against both BTK and PI3K as well as acceptable PK properties that could be useful in the development of treatments against B-cell related diseases.

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