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Louisville, KY, United States

Siow D.L.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Wattenberg B.W.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Wattenberg B.W.,University of Louisville
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2012

The mammalian ORMDL proteins are orthologues of the yeast Orm proteins (Orm1/2), which are regulators of ceramide biosynthesis. In mammalian cells, ceramide is a proapoptotic signaling sphingolipid, but it is also an obligate precursor to essential higher order sphingolipids. Therefore levels of ceramide are expected to be tightly controlled. We tested the three ORMDL isoforms for their role in homeostatically regulating ceramide biosynthesis in mammalian cells. Treatment of cells with a short chain (C6) ceramide or sphingosine resulted in a dramatic inhibition of ceramide biosynthesis. This inhibition was almost completely eliminated by ORMDL knockdown. This establishes that the ORMDL proteins mediate the feedback regulation of ceramide biosynthesis in mammalian cells. The ORMDL proteins are functionally redundant. Knockdown of all three isoforms simultaneously was required to alleviate the sphingolipid-mediated inhibition of ceramide biosynthesis. The lipid sensed by the ORMDL-mediated feedback mechanism is medium or long chain ceramide or a higher order sphingolipid. Treatment of permeabilized cells with C6-ceramide resulted in ORMDL-mediated inhibition of the rate-limiting enzyme in sphingolipid biosynthesis, serine palmitoyltransferase. This indicates that C6-ceramide inhibition requires only membrane-bound elements and does not involve diffusible proteins or small molecules.Wealso tested the atypical sphingomyelin synthase isoform, SMSr, for its role in the regulation of ceramide biosynthesis. This unusual enzyme has been reported to regulate ceramide levels in the endoplasmic reticulum. We were unable to detect a role for SMSr in regulating ceramide biosynthesis. Wesuggest that the role of SMSr may be in the regulation of downstream metabolism of ceramide. © 2012 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

Spencer W.A.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Jeyabalan J.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Kichambre S.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Gupta R.C.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Gupta R.C.,University of Louisville
Free Radical Biology and Medicine | Year: 2011

There is increasing evidence supporting a causal role for oxidatively damaged DNA in neurodegeneration during the natural aging process and in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson and Alzheimer. The presence of redox-active catecholamine neurotransmitters coupled with the localization of catalytic copper to DNA suggests a plausible role for these agents in the induction of oxidatively generated DNA damage. In this study we have investigated the role of Cu(II)-catalyzed oxidation of several catecholamine neurotransmitters and related neurotoxins in inducing oxidatively generated DNA damage. Autoxidation of all catechol neurotransmitters and related congeners tested resulted in the formation of nearly a dozen oxidation DNA products resulting in a decomposition pattern that was essentially identical for all agents tested. The presence of Cu(II), and to a lesser extent Fe(III), had no effect on the decomposition pattern but substantially enhanced the DNA product levels by up to 75-fold, with dopamine producing the highest levels of unidentified oxidation DNA products (383 ± 46 adducts/106 nucleotides), nearly 3-fold greater than 8-oxo-7,8-dihydro-2′- deoxyguanosine (122 ± 19 adducts/106 nucleotides) under the same conditions. The addition of sodium azide, 2,2,6,6-tetramethyl-4-piperidone, tiron, catalase, bathocuproine, or methional to the dopamine/Cu(II) reaction mixture resulted in a substantial decrease (> 90%) in oxidation DNA product levels, indicating a role for singlet oxygen, superoxide, H2O 2, Cu(I), and Cu(I)OOH in their formation. Whereas the addition of N-tert-butyl-α-phenylnitrone significantly decreased (67%) dopamine-mediated oxidatively damaged DNA, three other hydroxyl radical scavengers, ascorbic acid, sodium benzoate, and mannitol, had little to no effect on these oxidation DNA product levels, suggesting that free hydroxyl radicals may have limited involvement in this dopamine/Cu(II)-mediated oxidatively generated DNA damage. These studies suggest a possible contributory role of oxidatively generated DNA damage by dopamine and related catechol neurotransmitters/neurotoxins in neurodegeneration and cell death. We also found that a naturally occurring broad-spectrum antioxidant, ellagic acid, was substantially effective (nearly 50% inhibition) at low doses (1 μM) at preventing this dopamine/Cu(II)-mediated oxidatively generated DNA damage. Because dietary ellagic acid has been found to reduce oxidative stress in rat brains, a neuroprotective role of this polyphenol is plausible. © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Huang H.,Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science | Shah K.,Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science | Bradbury N.A.,Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science | Li C.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | And 2 more authors.
Cell Death and Disease | Year: 2014

Mcl-1 is an antiapoptotic member of the Bcl-2 family frequently upregulated in non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC). We now report the physiological significance of an interaction between Mcl-1 and the mitochondrial outer membrane-localized voltagedependent anion channel (VDAC) in NSCLC cell lines. Mcl-1 bound with high affinity to VDAC1 and 3 isoforms but only very weakly to VDAC2 and binding was disrupted by peptides based on the VDAC1 sequence. In A549 cells, reducing Mcl-1 expression levels or application of VDAC-based peptides limited Ca2+ uptake into the mitochondrial matrix, the consequence of which was to inhibit reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. In A549, H1299 and H460 cells, both Mcl-1 knockdown and VDAC-based peptides attenuated cell migration without affecting cell proliferation. Migration was rescued in Mcl-1 knockdown cells by experimentally restoring ROS levels, consistent with a model in which ROS production drives increased migration. These data suggest that an interaction between Mcl-1 and VDAC promotes lung cancer cell migration by a mechanism that involves Ca2+-dependent ROS production. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited.

Todd L.R.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Damin M.N.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Gomathinayagam R.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center | Horn S.R.,Duke University | And 3 more authors.
Molecular Biology of the Cell | Year: 2010

The relationship of mitochondrial dynamics and function to pluripotency are rather poorly understood aspects of stem cell biology. Here we show that growth factor erv1-like (Gfer) is involved in preserving mouse embryonic stem cell (ESC) mitochondrial morphology and function. Knockdown (KD) of Gfer in ESCs leads to decreased pluripotency marker expression, embryoid body (EB) formation, cell survival, and loss of mitochondrial function. Mitochondria in Gfer-KD ESCs undergo excessive fragmentation and mitophagy, whereas those in ESCs overexpressing Gfer appear elongated. Levels of the mitochondrial fission GTPase dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1) are highly elevated in Gfer-KD ESCs and decreased in Gfer-overexpressing cells. Treatment with a specific inhibitor of Drp1 rescues mitochondrial function and apoptosis, whereas expression of Drp1-dominant negative resulted in the restoration of pluripotency marker expression in Gfer-KD ESCs. Altogether, our data reveal a novel prosurvival role for Gfer in maintaining mitochondrial fission-fusion dynamics in pluripotent ESCs. © 2010 by The American Society for Cell Biology.

Chagpar A.B.,University of Louisville | Chagpar A.B.,James Graham Brown Cancer Center
Surgical Oncology Clinics of North America | Year: 2010

Since its introduction in the mid-1990s, sentinel lymph node (SLN) biopsy has revolutionized the management of breast cancer patients, allowing for a minimally invasive method to accurately stage the axilla without the need for axillary lymph node dissection and its concomitant morbidity in node-negative patients. The ability to identify the lymph nodes most likely to harbor metastases has allowed for increased scrutiny of these lymph nodes, often finding minimal disease in the SLNs. The relevance of such minute disease has been controversial, and there has been considerable debate as to how best to manage such patients. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.

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