Abstracts of papers (2012)

Last Update: 10/25/2012

Abstracts of papers (2012)

[2012-1] Masuko, T. et al., Neurosci. Lett. 506, 251-255 (2012)

The polyamine derivative BsHSPMG (butanesulfonyl-homospermine with guanidine group) was found to inhibit macroscopic currents strongly at heteromeric N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors (NR1/NR2A and NR1/NR2B) and Ca2+-permeable a-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (homomeric glutamate receptor 1) receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes on voltage-clamp recording. The IC50 values of BsHSPMG for NR1/NR2A, NR1/NR2B, NR1/NR2C, and NR1/NR2D receptors were 0.016, 0.021, 5.4, and 9.0 mM, respectively. BsHSPMG inhibited the activity of NR1/NR2A and NR1/NR2B receptors more strongly and did it for those of NR1/NR2C and NR1/NR2D receptors more weakly than a therapeutic drug of Alzheimer's disease, memantine. The inhibition by BsHSPMG was voltage-dependent, since it was prominent at -100mV compared to that at -20mV. Mutations including NR1 N616Q, E621Q, N650A, L655A, T807C, NR2B W559L, M562S, W607L, N616Q, and V620E, among others, reduced the inhibition by BsHSPMG, suggesting that BsHSPMG penetrates the channel pore of NMDA receptors deeply. The toxicity of BsHSPMG in neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells was much weaker than that of memantine. The effect of BsHSPMG was measured on the focal cerebral ischemia induced by occlusion (1 h) of the middle cerebral artery in mice. BsHSPMG applied before or after occlusion greatly reduced the volume of infarct in mice. These findings demonstrate that BsHSPMG penetrates the NMDA channel pore and exhibits neuroprotective effects against excitatory toxicity in mice.

[2012-2] Terui, Y. et al., Int. J. Biochem. Cell Biol. 44, 412-422 (2012)

It is known that polyamines increase cell growth through stimulation of the synthesis of several kinds of proteins encoded by the so-called "polyamine modulon". We recently reported that polyamines also increase cell viability at the stationary phase of cell growth through stimulation of the synthesis of ribosome modulation factor, a component of the polyamine modulon. Accordingly, we looked for other proteins involved in cell viability whose synthesis is stimulated by polyamines. It was found that the synthesis of ppGpp regulatory protein (SpoT) and ω protein of RNA polymerase (RpoZ) was stimulated by polyamines at the level of translation. Stimulation of the synthesis of SpoT and RpoZ by polyamines was due to an inefficient initiation codon UUG in spoT mRNA and an unusual location of a Shine-Dalgarno (SD) sequence in rpoZ mRNA. Accordingly, the spoT and rpoZ genes are components of the polyamine modulon involved in cell viability. Reduced cell viability caused by polyamine deficiency was prevented by modified spoT and rpoZ genes whose synthesis was not influenced by polyamines. Under these conditions, the level of ppGpp increased in parallel with increase of SpoT protein. The results indicate that polyamine stimulation of synthesis of SpoT and RpoZ plays important roles for cell viability through stimulation of ppGpp synthesis by SpoT and modulation of RNA synthesis by ppGpp-RpoZ complex.

[2012-3] Ishii, I. et al., Amino Acids 42, 545-575 (2012)

Vascular smooth muscle cells (SMC) are able to proliferate when cultured on plates, but become differentiated when maintained in three-dimensional type I collagen matrices (honeycombs). SMC grown in honeycombs contained a low level of polyamines due to the presence of antizyme 1 (AZ1), a negative regulator of ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) and of polyamine uptake. To clarify the role of AZ1 in differentiation of SMC in honeycombs, an ODC gene was stably transfected into SMC (ODC-SMC). Although proliferation of ODC-SMC on plates was accelerated together with an increase in phosphorylated focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and a decrease in α-actin and myosin, maker proteins of differentiation, growth of ODC-SMC ceased in honeycombs similarly to normal SMC with a low level of phosphorylated FAK and a high level of α-actin and myosin. AZ1 expression in ODC-SMC on plates was low, but that in honeycombs was high. Antizyme in ODC-SMC in honeycombs not only decreased the level of ODC but also inhibited polyamine uptake activity. These results taken together suggest that low levels of polyamines caused by AZ1 in SMC in honeycombs inhibit phosphorylation of FAK and enhance expression of α-actin and myosin, resulting in differentiation through inhibition of focal adhesions.

[2012-4] Terui, Y. et al., Amino Acids 42, 733-740 (2012)

The structure and function of a cadaverine-lysine antiporter CadB and a putrescine-ornithine antiporter PotE in Escherichia coli were evaluated using model structures based on the crystal structure of AdiC, an agmatine-arginine antiporter, and the activities of various CadB and PotE mutants. The central cavity of CadB, containing the substrate binding site, was wider than that of PotE, mirroring the different sizes of cadaverine and putrescine. The size of the central cavity of CadB and PotE was dependent on the angle of transmembrane helix 6 (TM6) against the periplasm. Tyr73, Tyr89, Tyr90, Glu204, Tyr235, Asp303, and Tyr423 of CadB, and Cys62, Trp201, Glu207, Trp292, and Tyr425 of PotE were strongly involved in the antiport activities. In addition, Trp43, Tyr57, Tyr107, Tyr366, and Tyr368 of CadB were involved preferentially in cadaverine uptake at neutral pH, while only Tyr90 of PotE was involved preferentially in putrescine uptake. The results indicate that the central cavity of CadB consists of TMs 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, and 10, and that of PotE consists of TMs 2, 3, 6, and 8. These results also suggest that several amino acid residues are necessary for recognition of cadaverine in the periplasm because the level of cadaverine is much lower than that of putrescine in the periplasm at neutral pH. All the amino acid residues identified as being strongly involved in both the antiport and uptake activities were located on the surface of the transport path consisting of the central cavity and TM12.

[2012-5] Mishina, T. et al., Amino Acids 42, 791-801 (2012)

Polyamines are essential for cell growth and differentiation. In Xenopus early embryos, per embryo level of spermine is extremely low as compared with that of spermidine. To disclose the possible function of polyamines in Xenopus early embryos, we tested the effect of co-injection of spermine and spermidine on the functioning of exogenously microinjected in vitro-synthesized, Db-catenin mRNA which is known to induce a secondary head after being microinjected into a ventral vegetal blastomere in 8-celled Xenopus embryos. Microinjection of Db-catenin mRNA in fact induced a secondary axis with a secondary head, and co-injection of spermine or spermidine suppresses induction of the secondary head and secondary axis without drastic effects like induction of immediate cell death or execution of apoptosis at blastula stage. The inhibitory effects were dosage dependent, and at lower doses the inhibition was mainly on secondary head formation rather than on secondary axis formation. We performed similar experiments using GFP mRNA and confirmed that expression of GFP mRNA was also suppressed by co-injection of spermine. We mixed Db-catenin mRNA with different amounts of spermine and performed electrophoresis on agarose gels, with a finding that the prior mixing greatly suppressed mRNA migration. These results suggest that an excess amount of spermine as well as spermidine exerts inhibitory effects on mRNA translation, and that the inhibition may be due to direct binding of polyamines to mRNA and a reduction of negative charges on mRNA molecules that might also induce the formation of cross link-like networks among mRNAs.

[2012-6] Yoshida, M. et al., Clin. Chim. Acta 413, 753-759 (2012)

BACKGROUND: We found previously that increases in plasma levels of protein-conjugated acrolein and polyamine oxidases, enzymes that produce acrolein, are good biomarkers for stroke. The aim of this study was to test whether 3-hydroxypropyl mercapturic acid (3-HPMA), an acrolein-glutathione metabolite, was increased in the urine of stroke patients.
METHODS: The level of 3-HPMA in urine was measured by liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Stroke (78 subjects) was divided into 52 cerebral infarction (CI) and 26 cerebral hemorrhage (CH) on the basis of clinical information including brain imaging.
RESULTS: A major acrolein derivative in urine is 3-HPMA. Being different from the results of PC-Acro in plasma, 3-HPMA in urine decreased following stroke. The median value of
mmol 3-HPMA/g creatinine (Cre) for 90 control subjects was 2.83, while that for 78 stroke patients was 1.56. The degree of the decrease in 3-HPMA was similar in both CI and CH patients. Furthermore, the median value of mmol 3-HPMA/g Cre in 56 patients with lesions >1cm in diameter (1.39) was significantly lower than that in 20 patients with lesion <1cm in diameter (2.16).
CONCLUSION: Inverse correlation between stroke and urinary 3-HPMA was observed. The results suggest that stroke is aggravated when nervous system tissues have a reduced level of glutathione.

[2012-7] Tomitori, H. et al., Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 418, 110-115 (2012)

We have shown recently that acrolein is more strongly involved in cell damage than reactive oxygen species during brain infarction. Thus, we tried to isolate cells with reduced susceptibility to acrolein toxicity to clarify how acrolein is detoxified under cell culture conditions. The IC50 of acrolein in mouse mammary carcinoma FM3A cells and in neuroblastoma Neuro2a cells was 2.6 and 4.2 mM, respectively, but in acrolein toxicity-decreasing FM3A (FM3A-ATD) cells and Neuro2a (Neuro2a-ATD) cells, it was 7.6 and 8.4 mM, respectively. In both FM3A-ATD and Neuro2a-ATD cells, the concentration of glutathione (GSH) was increased, so that detoxification occurred through acrolein conjugation with GSH. In FM3A-ATD cells, the level of a rate-limiting enzyme of GSH synthesis, g-glutamylcysteine ligase catalytic unit (GCLC), was increased through the reactivation of one inactive allele of GCLC genes in FM3A cells. In Neuro2a-ATD cells, phosphorylation of transcription factors (c-Jun and NF-kB) necessary for expression of genes for GCLC and glutathione synthetase (GSHS) involved in GSH synthesis was stimulated, so that transcription of two genes increased in Neuro2a-ATD cells. Phosphorylation of JNK (c-Jun N-terminal kinase), which catalyzes phosphorylation of c-Jun and NF-kB p65, was also increased in Neuro2a-ATD cells, suggesting that activation of JNK kinase is responsible for the increase in GSH. These results support the idea that GSH plays important roles in detoxification of acrolein, because GSH is increased in both FM3A-ATD and Neuro2a-ATD cells.

[2012-8] Zhang, D. et al., Genes Dev. 26, 461-473 (2012)

The gene expression networks governing embryonic stem cell (ESC) pluripotency are complex and finely regulated during differentiation toward specific lineages. We describe a new role for Amd1 (adenosyl methionine decarboxylase), a key enzyme in the polyamine synthesis pathway, in regulating both ESC self-renewal and differentiation to the neural lineage. Amd1 is highly expressed in ESCs and is translationally down-regulated by the neural precursor cell (NPC)-enriched microRNA miR-762 during NPC differentiation. Overexpression of Amd1 or addition of the polyamine spermine blocks ESC-to-NPC conversion, suggesting Amd1 must be down-regulated to decrease the levels of inhibitory spermine during differentiation. In addition, we demonstrate that high levels of Amd1 are required for maintenance of the ESC state. We show that forced overexpression of Amd1 in ESCs results in maintenance of high Myc levels and a delay in differentiation on removal of LIF. We propose that Amd1 is a major regulator of ESC self-renewal and that its essential role lies in its regulation of Myc levels within the cell.

[2012-9] Waragai, M. et al., J. Alzheimer's Dis. 32, 33-41 (2012)

The objective of this study was to determine whether plasma levels of acrolein, a compound that causes cell damage, and amyloid-β (Aβ) are useful biochemical markers for Alzheimer's disease (AD). The study included 221 elderly subjects divided into 101 non-demented [33 healthy control and 68 non-demented subjects with white matter hyperintensity (nd-WMH)], 50 mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and 70 AD. Increases in both protein-conjugated acrolein (PC-Acro) and Aβ40/42 ratio were observed in MCI and AD patients compared with values in control subjects. When the combined measurements of PC-Acro and Aβ40/42 ratio were evaluated using the median value of the relative risk value for dementia, they were in the order AD (0.98) ≥ MCI (0.97) > nd-WMH (0.83) > control (0.35). The results indicate that measurements of PC-Acro and Aβ40/42 ratio not only detect MCI and AD patients but also nd-WMH subjects. Furthermore, both PC-Acro and Aβ40/42 ratio in plasma for 120 MCI and AD patients were significantly higher than those for 101 control and nd-WMH subjects, indicating that both values become useful biochemical markers for MCI and AD subjects.

[2012-10] Tomitori, H. et al., J. Pharmracol. Exp. Ther. 343, 82-90 (2012)

Modeling the binding sites for spermine and ifenprodil on the regulatory (R) domains of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor GluN1 and GluN2B subunits was carried out after measuring spermine stimulation and ifenprodil inhibition at receptors containing GluN1 and GluN2B R domain mutants. Models were constructed based on the published crystal structure of the GluN1 and GluN2B R domains, which form a heterodimer (Nature 475:249-253, 2011). The experimental results and modeling suggest that a binding site for spermine was formed by the residues near the cleft between the R1 and R2 lobes of the GluN1 R domain (GluN1R) together with residues on the surface of the R2 (C-terminal side) lobe of the GluN2B R domain (GluN2BR). The ifenprodil binding site included residues on the surface of the R1 lobe (N-terminal side) of GluN1R together with residues near the cleft between the R1 and R2 lobes of GluN2BR. It was confirmed using a Western blot analysis that GluN1R and GluN2BR formed a heterodimer. Models of spermine and ifenprodil binding to the heterodimer were constructed. The modeling suggests that an open space between the two R1 lobes of GluN1R and GluN2BR is promoted through spermine binding and that the R1 lobes of GluN1R and GluN2BR approach each other through ifenprodil binding-an effect opposite to that seen with the binding of spermine.

[2012-11] Sakamoto, A. et al., Int. J. Biochem. Cell Biol. 44, 1877-1886 (2012)

We have reported that polyamines increase cell viability at the stationary phase of cell growth through translational stimulation of ribosome modulation factor, and SpoT and RpoZ proteins involved in the synthesis and function of ppGpp in Escherichia coli. Since biofilm formation is also involved in cell viability, we looked for proteins involved in biofilm formation and cell viability whose synthesis is stimulated by polyamines at the level of translation. It was found that the synthesis of response regulators UvrY and CpxR in the two-component signal transducing systems and ribosome recycling factor (RRF) was increased by polyamines at the level of translation. Polyamine stimulation of the synthesis of UvrY and RRF was dependent on the existence of the inefficient initiation codons UUG and GUG in uvrY and frr mRNA, respectively; and polyamine stimulation of CpxR synthesis was dependent on the existence of an unusual location of a Shine-Dalgarno (SD) sequence in cpxR mRNA. Biofilm formation and cell viability in the absence of polyamines was increased by transformation of modified uvrY and cpxR genes, and cell viability by modified frr gene whose translation occurs effectively without polyamines. The results indicate that polyamines are necessary for both biofilm formation and cell viability.