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66 Janelia Publications

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    06/12/22 | Super-Resolution Imaging of Fas/CD95 Reorganization Induced by Membrane-Bound Fas Ligand Reveals Nanoscale Clustering Upstream of FADD Recruitment.
    Frazzette N, Cruz AC, Wu X, Hammer JA, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Siegel RM, Sengupta P
    Cells. 2022 Jun 12;11(12):. doi: 10.3390/cells11121908

    Signaling through the TNF-family receptor Fas/CD95 can trigger apoptosis or non-apoptotic cellular responses and is essential for protection from autoimmunity. Receptor clustering has been observed following interaction with Fas ligand (FasL), but the stoichiometry of Fas, particularly when triggered by membrane-bound FasL, the only form of FasL competent at inducing programmed cell death, is not known. Here we used super-resolution microscopy to study the behavior of single molecules of Fas/CD95 on the plasma membrane after interaction of Fas with FasL on planar lipid bilayers. We observed rapid formation of Fas protein superclusters containing more than 20 receptors after interactions with membrane-bound FasL. Fluorescence correlation imaging demonstrated recruitment of FADD dependent on an intact Fas death domain, with lipid raft association playing a secondary role. Flow-cytometric FRET analysis confirmed these results, and also showed that some Fas clustering can occur in the absence of FADD and caspase-8. Point mutations in the Fas death domain associated with autoimmune lymphoproliferative syndrome (ALPS) completely disrupted Fas reorganization and FADD recruitment, confirming structure-based predictions of the critical role that these residues play in Fas-Fas and Fas-FADD interactions. Finally, we showed that induction of apoptosis correlated with the ability to form superclusters and recruit FADD.

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    06/02/22 | Targeting LIPA independent of its lipase activity is a therapeutic strategy in solid tumors via induction of endoplasmic reticulum stress.
    Liu X, Viswanadhapalli S, Kumar S, Lee T, Moore A, Ma S, Chen L, Hsieh M, Li M, Sareddy GR, Parra K, Blatt EB, Reese TC, Zhao Y, Chang A, Yan H, Xu Z, Pratap UP, Liu Z, Roggero CM, Tan Z, Weintraub ST, Peng Y, Tekmal RR, Arteaga CL, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Vadlamudi RK, Ahn J, Raj GV
    Nature Cancer. 2022 Jun 02:. doi: 10.1038/s43018-022-00389-8

    Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) has a poor clinical outcome, due to a lack of actionable therapeutic targets. Herein we define lysosomal acid lipase A (LIPA) as a viable molecular target in TNBC and identify a stereospecific small molecule (ERX-41) that binds LIPA. ERX-41 induces endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress resulting in cell death, and this effect is on target as evidenced by specific LIPA mutations providing resistance. Importantly, we demonstrate that ERX-41 activity is independent of LIPA lipase function but dependent on its ER localization. Mechanistically, ERX-41 binding of LIPA decreases expression of multiple ER-resident proteins involved in protein folding. This targeted vulnerability has a large therapeutic window, with no adverse effects either on normal mammary epithelial cells or in mice. Our study implicates a targeted strategy for solid tumors, including breast, brain, pancreatic and ovarian, whereby small, orally bioavailable molecules targeting LIPA block protein folding, induce ER stress and result in tumor cell death.

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    01/01/22 | ER proteins decipher the tubulin code to regulate organelle distribution.
    Zheng P, Obara CJ, Szczesna E, Nixon-Abell J, Mahalingan KK, Roll-Mecak A, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Blackstone C
    Nature. 2022 Jan 01;601(7891):132-138. doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-04204-9

    Organelles move along differentially modified microtubules to establish and maintain their proper distributions and functions. However, how cells interpret these post-translational microtubule modification codes to selectively regulate organelle positioning remains largely unknown. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is an interconnected network of diverse morphologies that extends promiscuously throughout the cytoplasm, forming abundant contacts with other organelles. Dysregulation of endoplasmic reticulum morphology is tightly linked to neurologic disorders and cancer. Here we demonstrate that three membrane-bound endoplasmic reticulum proteins preferentially interact with different microtubule populations, with CLIMP63 binding centrosome microtubules, kinectin (KTN1) binding perinuclear polyglutamylated microtubules, and p180 binding glutamylated microtubules. Knockout of these proteins or manipulation of microtubule populations and glutamylation status results in marked changes in endoplasmic reticulum positioning, leading to similar redistributions of other organelles. During nutrient starvation, cells modulate CLIMP63 protein levels and p180-microtubule binding to bidirectionally move endoplasmic reticulum and lysosomes for proper autophagic responses.

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    12/11/21 | Unraveling Single-Particle Trajectories Confined in Tubular Networks
    Yunhao Sun , Zexi Yu , Christopher Obara , Keshav Mittal , Jennifer Lippincott-Schwarz , Elena F Koslover
    arXiv. 2021 Dec 11:

    The analysis of single particle trajectories plays an important role in elucidating dynamics within complex environments such as those found in living cells. However, the characterization of intracellular particle motion is often confounded by confinement of the particles within non-trivial subcellular geometries. Here, we focus specifically on the case of particles undergoing Brownian motion within a tubular network, as found in some cellular organelles. An unraveling algorithm is developed to uncouple particle motion from the confining network structure, allowing for an accurate extraction of the diffusion coefficient, as well as differentiating between Brownian and fractional Brownian dynamics. We validate the algorithm with simulated trajectories and then highlight its application to an example system: analyzing the motion of membrane proteins confined in the tubules of the peripheral endoplasmic reticulum in mammalian cells. We show that these proteins undergo diffusive motion with a well-characterized diffusivity. Our algorithm provides a generally applicable approach for disentangling geometric morphology and particle dynamics in networked architectures.

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    11/01/21 | An open-access volume electron microscopy atlas of whole cells and tissues.
    Xu CS, Pang S, Shtengel G, Müller A, Ritter AT, Hoffman HK, Takemura S, Lu Z, Pasolli HA, Iyer N, Chung J, Bennett D, Weigel AV, Freeman M, Van Engelenburg SB, Walther TC, Farese RV, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Mellman I, Solimena M, Hess HF
    Nature. 2021 Nov 1;599(7883):147-51. doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-03992-4

    Understanding cellular architecture is essential for understanding biology. Electron microscopy (EM) uniquely visualizes cellular structures with nanometre resolution. However, traditional methods, such as thin-section EM or EM tomography, have limitations in that they visualize only a single slice or a relatively small volume of the cell, respectively. Focused ion beam-scanning electron microscopy (FIB-SEM) has demonstrated the ability to image small volumes of cellular samples with 4-nm isotropic voxels. Owing to advances in the precision and stability of FIB milling, together with enhanced signal detection and faster SEM scanning, we have increased the volume that can be imaged with 4-nm voxels by two orders of magnitude. Here we present a volume EM atlas at such resolution comprising ten three-dimensional datasets for whole cells and tissues, including cancer cells, immune cells, mouse pancreatic islets and Drosophila neural tissues. These open access data (via OpenOrganelle) represent the foundation of a field of high-resolution whole-cell volume EM and subsequent analyses, and we invite researchers to explore this atlas and pose questions.

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    11/01/21 | Whole-cell organelle segmentation in volume electron microscopy.
    Heinrich L, Bennett D, Ackerman D, Park W, Bogovic J, Eckstein N, Petruncio A, Clements J, Pang S, Xu CS, Funke J, Korff W, Hess HF, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Saalfeld S, Weigel AV, COSEM Project Team
    Nature. 2021 Nov 01;599(7883):141-46. doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-03977-3

    Cells contain hundreds of organelles and macromolecular assemblies. Obtaining a complete understanding of their intricate organization requires the nanometre-level, three-dimensional reconstruction of whole cells, which is only feasible with robust and scalable automatic methods. Here, to support the development of such methods, we annotated up to 35 different cellular organelle classes-ranging from endoplasmic reticulum to microtubules to ribosomes-in diverse sample volumes from multiple cell types imaged at a near-isotropic resolution of 4 nm per voxel with focused ion beam scanning electron microscopy (FIB-SEM). We trained deep learning architectures to segment these structures in 4 nm and 8 nm per voxel FIB-SEM volumes, validated their performance and showed that automatic reconstructions can be used to directly quantify previously inaccessible metrics including spatial interactions between cellular components. We also show that such reconstructions can be used to automatically register light and electron microscopy images for correlative studies. We have created an open data and open-source web repository, 'OpenOrganelle', to share the data, computer code and trained models, which will enable scientists everywhere to query and further improve automatic reconstruction of these datasets.

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    09/21/21 | Activity-dependent Golgi satellite formation in dendrites reshapes the neuronal surface glycoproteome.
    Govind AP, Jeyifous O, Russell TA, Yi Z, Weigel AV, Ramaprasad A, Newell L, Ramos W, Valbuena FM, Casler JC, Yan J, Glick BS, Swanson GT, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Green WN
    eLife. 2021 Sep 21;10:. doi: 10.7554/eLife.68910

    Activity-driven changes in the neuronal surface glycoproteome are known to occur with synapse formation, plasticity and related diseases, but their mechanistic basis and significance are unclear. Here, we observed that -glycans on surface glycoproteins of dendrites shift from immature to mature forms containing sialic acid in response to increased neuronal activation. In exploring the basis of these -glycosylation alterations, we discovered they result from the growth and proliferation of Golgi satellites scattered throughout the dendrite. Golgi satellites that formed during neuronal excitation were in close association with ER exit sites and early endosomes and contained glycosylation machinery without the Golgi structural protein, GM130. They functioned as distal glycosylation stations in dendrites, terminally modifying sugars either on newly synthesized glycoproteins passing through the secretory pathway, or on surface glycoproteins taken up from the endocytic pathway. These activities led to major changes in the dendritic surface of excited neurons, impacting binding and uptake of lectins, as well as causing functional changes in neurotransmitter receptors such as nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Neural activity thus boosts the activity of the dendrite's satellite micro-secretory system by redistributing Golgi enzymes involved in glycan modifications into peripheral Golgi satellites. This remodeling of the neuronal surface has potential significance for synaptic plasticity, addiction and disease.

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    07/23/21 | YAP1 nuclear efflux and transcriptional reprograming follow membrane diminution upon VSV-G-induced cell fusion.
    Feliciano D, Ott CM, Espinosa-Medina I, Weigel AV, Benedetti L, Milano KM, Tang Z, Lee T, Kliman HJ, Guller SM, Lippincott-Schwartz J
    Nature Communications. 2021 Jul 23;12(1):4502. doi: 10.1038/s41467-021-24708-2

    Cells in many tissues, such as bone, muscle, and placenta, fuse into syncytia to acquire new functions and transcriptional programs. While it is known that fused cells are specialized, it is unclear whether cell-fusion itself contributes to programmatic-changes that generate the new cellular state. Here, we address this by employing a fusogen-mediated, cell-fusion system to create syncytia from undifferentiated cells. RNA-Seq analysis reveals VSV-G-induced cell fusion precedes transcriptional changes. To gain mechanistic insights, we measure the plasma membrane surface area after cell-fusion and observe it diminishes through increases in endocytosis. Consequently, glucose transporters internalize, and cytoplasmic glucose and ATP transiently decrease. This reduced energetic state activates AMPK, which inhibits YAP1, causing transcriptional-reprogramming and cell-cycle arrest. Impairing either endocytosis or AMPK activity prevents YAP1 inhibition and cell-cycle arrest after fusion. Together, these data demonstrate plasma membrane diminishment upon cell-fusion causes transient nutrient stress that may promote transcriptional-reprogramming independent from extrinsic cues.

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    07/05/21 | Lipid droplets in the nervous system.
    Ralhan I, Chang C, Lippincott-Schwartz J, Ioannou MS
    Journal of Cell Biology. 2021 Jul 05;220(7):. doi: 10.1083/jcb.202102136

    Lipid droplets are dynamic intracellular lipid storage organelles that respond to the physiological state of cells. In addition to controlling cell metabolism, they play a protective role for many cellular stressors, including oxidative stress. Despite prior descriptions of lipid droplets appearing in the brain as early as a century ago, only recently has the role of lipid droplets in cells found in the brain begun to be understood. Lipid droplet functions have now been described for cells of the nervous system in the context of development, aging, and an increasing number of neuropathologies. Here, we review the basic mechanisms of lipid droplet formation, turnover, and function and discuss how these mechanisms enable lipid droplets to function in different cell types of the nervous system under healthy and pathological conditions.

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    07/01/21 | Biomolecular Condensates and Their Links to Cancer Progression.
    Cai D, Liu Z, Lippincott-Schwartz J
    Trends in Biochemical Sciences. 2021 Jul 01;46(7):535-549. doi: 10.1016/j.tibs.2021.01.002

    Liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) has emerged in recent years as an important physicochemical process for organizing diverse processes within cells via the formation of membraneless organelles termed biomolecular condensates. Emerging evidence now suggests that the formation and regulation of biomolecular condensates are also intricately linked to cancer formation and progression. We review the most recent literature linking the existence and/or dissolution of biomolecular condensates to different hallmarks of cancer formation and progression. We then discuss the opportunities that this condensate perspective provides for cancer research and the development of novel therapeutic approaches, including the perturbation of condensates by small-molecule inhibitors.

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