Cell biology

  • Article |

    Transforming growth factor-β blocks the activation of pro-inflammatory cytokines, in part by the degradation of Myd88. This study shows that smad ubiquitin regulator proteins are shown to mediate the destruction of Myd8 and are therefore required for the anti-inflammatory effects of transforming growth factor-β.

    • Youn Sook Lee
    • , Jin Seok Park
    •  & Seok Hee Park
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Cell-penetrating peptides can deliver molecular cargoes into living cells, and cross biological membranes by transduction—a non-endocytic mechanism. Here, the transduction efficiency of cyclic arginine-rich peptides is shown to be higher than that of more flexible linear peptides.

    • Gisela Lättig-Tünnemann
    • , Manuel Prinz
    •  & M. Cristina Cardoso
  • Article |

    The development of radial progenitor cells and astroglia in the cerebral cortex depends on the microtubule cytoskeleton. Eomet al. have developed a new mouse model where the microtubules of astrocytes and radial glia cells are fluorescently tagged, facilitating the detailed study of microtubule dynamics and development in these cells.

    • Tae-Yeon Eom
    • , Amelia Stanco
    •  & E.S. Anton
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Pluripotent stem cells can be generated from the somatic cells of humans and are a useful model to study disease. Here, pluripotent stem cells are made from a patient with familial Parkinson's disease, and the resulting neurons exhibit elevated levels of α-synuclein, recapitulating the molecular features of the patient's disease.

    • Michael J. Devine
    • , Mina Ryten
    •  & Tilo Kunath
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Drosophila melanogaster larvae demonstrate chemotaxis towards odours but their navigation mechanism is poorly understood. Using computer-vision tracking, Gomez-Marinet al.show that larvae ascend odour gradients using an active sampling strategy that is analogous to sniffing in vertebrates.

    • Alex Gomez-Marin
    • , Greg J. Stephens
    •  & Matthieu Louis
  • Article |

    Chromatin is rendered silent by epigenetic marks when in proximity to telomeres, and, in yeast, this effect requires the histone-modifying enzyme Sir2. In this study, the human Sir2 family member SIRT6 is shown to modulate the telomere position effect in human cells.

    • Ruth I. Tennen
    • , Dennis J. Bua
    •  & Katrin F. Chua
  • Article |

    How retinoganglion cell axons project correctly to the superior colliculus is poorly understood. Here, projections are shown to require EphB1, EphB2 and ephrin-B1 to terminate in the medial superior colliculus, while ephrin-B2 is essential for the mapping of both dorsal and ventral axons.

    • Sonal Thakar
    • , George Chenaux
    •  & Mark Henkemeyer
  • Article
    | Open Access

    How microtubules are organized correctly in plant cells is not well understood. Ambroseet al. use 4D imaging and computer modelling to show that sharp cell edges induce microtubule depolymerization and that the microtubule-associated protein CLASP mitigates this process to modulate array organization.

    • Chris Ambrose
    • , Jun F. Allard
    •  & Geoffrey O. Wasteneys
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Cytoplasmic flows—the movement of cytoplasmic material—can be detected following the fertilization of an egg by a sperm in many species. In this study, rhythmic cytoplasmic flows are shown to be induced in mice by calcium-induced cytoskeleton contractions which could be used to predict the successful outcome of fertilization.

    • Anna Ajduk
    • , Tagbo Ilozue
    •  & Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz
  • Article |

    Studying the physical interaction of stem cells with their niche has previously been difficult. Using a fluorescence-based reporter, Michelet al. are able to show that bone morphogenetic protein signalling occurs between Drosophilatestes germline stem cells and their niche and is via adherens junctions.

    • Marcus Michel
    • , Isabel Raabe
    •  & Christian Bökel
  • Article |

    MITF is a transcription factor required for melanocyte development, which is activated in some melanomas. Zhao and colleagues show that USP13 removes ubiquitin from MITF, stabilizes MITF protein levels and enhances colony formation, suggesting that USP13 may be a therapeutic target in melanoma.

    • Xiansi Zhao
    • , Brian Fiske
    •  & David E Fisher
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Chk2 is a kinase that is a potential chemotherapeutic target. Here, Chk2 and the kinase ERK are shown to functionally interact, and are elevated in expression in human diffuse B-cell lymphomas. Combinatorial inhibition of the kinases was also shown to block tumour growth in anin vivomouse model.

    • Bojie Dai
    • , X. Frank Zhao
    •  & Ronald B. Gartenhaus
  • Article |

    The torsinA protein localizes to the endoplasmic reticulum and, when mutated, causes early onset torsion dystonia. The authors reveal a new role for torsinA in proteosome-mediated degradation of misfolded proteins, and relate this to endoplasmic reticulum stress, in aCaenorhabditis elegansmodel and patient fibroblasts.

    • Flávia C. Nery
    • , Ioanna A. Armata
    •  & Xandra O. Breakefield
  • Article |

    Soluble cytosolic proteins can be degraded in lysosomes by chaperone-mediated autophagy, however, the current method to measure this process requires isolation of lysosomes. Now, a fluorescent reporter is described that can measure this type of autophagy in intact cells.

    • Hiroshi Koga
    • , Marta Martinez-Vicente
    •  & Ana Maria Cuervo
  • Article |

    During development, Wnt-mediated Notch signalling controls the generation of somites from the presomitic mesoderm, but the precise signalling mechanism is unknown. Here, the transcription factor Mesogenin 1 is shown to be a direct target of Wnt3a and regulates the transcription of a Notch signalling program.

    • Ravindra B. Chalamalasetty
    • , William C. Dunty Jr
    •  & Terry P. Yamaguchi
  • Article
    | Open Access

    von Willebrand factor (VWF) multimers mediate primary adhesion and aggregation of platelets. Jakobiet al. reveal a calcium-binding site in the VWF-A2 domain, and show that calcium binding encourages folding of the protein and has a role in mechanosensing.

    • Arjen J. Jakobi
    • , Alireza Mashaghi
    •  & Eric G. Huizinga
  • Article |

    Nitric oxide can be produced by nitric oxide synthase or by nitrite reduction, but whether the latter occurs inside cells is unknown. Here, the TRPV3 ion channel is shown to induce nitrite-dependent nitric oxide production in keratinocytes, where it has a role in thermosensory behaviour and wound healing.

    • Takashi Miyamoto
    • , Matt J. Petrus
    •  & Ardem Patapoutian
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The vomeronasal organ detects pheromones, which are thought to activate TRPC2 channels on the surface of vomeronasal neurons. Using TRPC2 knockout mice, the authors show that urinary pheromones can also activate these neurons via calcium-activated chloride channels, suggesting a TRPC2-independent pathway for sensing pheromones.

    • SangSeong Kim
    • , Limei Ma
    •  & C. Ron Yu
  • Article |

    Cell division and cilium formation are dependent on centrosomes that consist of two centrioles and pericentriolar material (PCM). In this study, the Sas-4 protein is shown to be important in mediating the formation of cytoplasmic PCM complexes and the incorporation of this material into centrosomes.

    • Jayachandran Gopalakrishnan
    • , Vito Mennella
    •  & Tomer Avidor-Reiss
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Complex diseases such as multiple sclerosis have both genetic and environmental components. This study demonstrates that variants of genes implicated in multiple sclerosis, and alterations in cellular metabolism and vitamin D3 levels, alterN-glycosylation, a post-translational modification causal of the disease in mice.

    • Haik Mkhikian
    • , Ani Grigorian
    •  & Michael Demetriou
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Circadian rhythm is controlled by the suprachiasmatic nucleus and the mechanisms that control the rhythm are largely undiscovered. In this study, a G protein regulator, RGS16, is shown to be involved in the production of cyclic AMP that is required for the suprachiasmatic nucleus to maintain rhythm

    • Masao Doi
    • , Atsushi Ishida
    •  & Hitoshi Okamura
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Increasing the nutritional content of plant crops and the identification of iron transporters in rice would facilitate the improvement of rice varieties. In this study, the authors identify a mitochondrial iron transporter in rice — MIT — and suggest that this gene is important for rice growth and development.

    • Khurram Bashir
    • , Yasuhiro Ishimaru
    •  & Naoko K. Nishizawa
  • Article
    | Open Access

    There is debate about the structural organization of the yeast centromeric nucleosome and the role of the nonhistone protein Scm3 in its assembly. Dechassaet al.find that yeast centromeric nucleosomes organize DNA in a left-handed superhelix, and show that Scm3 is a specific nucleosome assembly factor.

    • Mekonnen Lemma Dechassa
    • , Katharina Wyns
    •  & Karolin Luger
  • Article
    | Open Access

    IKK kinases activate nuclear factor-κB, and the activated form of this transcription factor is found in endothelial cells in diseased tissue. In this study, mice lacking IKKβ in the endothelium are generated, and it is shown that defects in endothelial cell function are both IKK kinase activity dependent and independent.

    • Noboru Ashida
    • , Sucharita SenBanerjee
    •  & Anthony Rosenzweig
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The study of prion diseases has been hampered as there is no method to distinguish newly formed abnormal prion protein conformers. Here, the authors describe a method to study newly formed abnormal prion protein and demonstrate that it is produced within 1 minute of cell exposure to prions.

    • R. Goold
    • , S. Rabbanian
    •  & S.J. Tabrizi
  • Article
    | Open Access

    In vitrostudies have suggested that the ubiquitin ligase, Nedd4-2, regulates several proteins, including the epithelial sodium channel. Here by examining Nedd4-2-deficient mice, the authors demonstrate that Nedd4-2 is essential for epithelial sodium channel regulation, fetal and postnatal lung function and animal survival.

    • Natasha A. Boase
    • , Grigori Y. Rychkov
    •  & Sharad Kumar
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Exosomes released from cells can transfer RNA to recipient cells. In this study, the authors demonstrate that microRNAs in exosomes from T cells can be transferred to antigen-presenting cells during immune synapsis, and that this can alter gene expression, suggesting a new form of cellular communication.

    • María Mittelbrunn
    • , Cristina Gutiérrez-Vázquez
    •  & Francisco Sánchez-Madrid
  • Article
    | Open Access

    In the developing eye, the lens and retina are derived from different embryonic tissues, and how these two structures develop next to each other is of interest. In this study, the authors show that transforming growth factor-β secreted by neural crest cells is critical for the positioning of the lens next to the retina.

    • Timothy Grocott
    • , Samuel Johnson
    •  & Andrea Streit
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Eukaryotic cell plasma membranes possess a mechanism to repair tears caused by stimuli such as mechanical stress. The authors demonstrate that annexin-A5, when assembled into two-dimensional arrays in the presence of calcium, is required for membrane repair.

    • Anthony Bouter
    • , Céline Gounou
    •  & Alain R. Brisson
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Regulatory T cells are characterized by the expression of Foxp3, however, how the expression of this protein is controlled is unclear. Here, the authors show that the nuclear orphan receptor, Nr4a2, is a transcriptional activator of Foxp3, and suggest that it is required for the function of regulatory T cells.

    • Takashi Sekiya
    • , Ikkou Kashiwagi
    •  & Akihiko Yoshimura
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Deubiquitinating enzymes are involved in multiple cellular processes, including cell viability. The authors reveal a role for the deubiquitinating enzyme, USP17, in the migration of cells in response to chemokines and show that USP17 is required for the relocalization of GTPases involved in cell motility.

    • Michelle de la Vega
    • , Alyson A. Kelvin
    •  & James A. Johnston
  • Article
    | Open Access

    It has been proposed that stem cells use nonrandom chromosome segregation to avoid the accumulation of replication-induced mutations. Here, the authors examine intestinal epithelial stem cell division and show, using label exclusion and retention assays, that the cells segregate their chromosomes randomly.

    • Marion Escobar
    • , Pierre Nicolas
    •  & Catherine Legraverend
  • Article |

    Phosphorylation of the microtubule-associated protein tau is associated with disease, but other post-translational modifications of tau are not well studied. Here, Cohenet al. study the acetylation of tau and suggest that this form of the protein may be associated with tauopathies.

    • Todd J. Cohen
    • , Jing L. Guo
    •  & Virginia M. Y. Lee
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Asymmetric partitioning of centrosomes has been reported inDrosophilaneuroblasts, but whether this type of division has implications for stem cell self-renewal is unclear. In this study, the authors show that the asymmetric division of the centrosomes correlates with the asymmetric fate of the cells and that the daughter centrosome is retained by the neuroblast.

    • Jens Januschke
    • , Salud Llamazares
    •  & Cayetano Gonzalez
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Progressive sensorineural hearing loss affects many people, but the underlying genetics remain largely undefined. Here, the authors identify mutations inGIPC3in mice and two consanguineous families that lead to hearing loss and in mice cause defects in the structure of stereocilia bundles and audiogenic seizures.

    • Nikoletta Charizopoulou
    • , Andrea Lelli
    •  & Konrad Noben-Trauth