Branched-Chain Amino Acid Aminotransferase 2 Regulates Ferroptotic Cell Death in Cancer Cells

By using a high-throughput CRISPR/Cas9-based genetic screen in HepG2 hepatocellular carcinoma cells to search for metabolic proteins inhibiting ferroptosis, researchers identified a branched-chain amino acid aminotransferase 2 as a novel suppressor of ferroptosis.
[Cell Death & Differentiation]
Wang, K., Zhang, Z., Tsai, H., Liu, Y., Gao, J., Wang, M., Song, L., Cao, X., Xu, Z., Chen, H., Gong, A., Wang, D., Cheng, F., & Zhu, H. (2020). Branched-chain amino acid aminotransferase 2 regulates ferroptotic cell death in cancer cells. Cell Death & Differentiation, 1–15. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41418-020-00644-4 Cite
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Inhibition of NLRP3 Inflammasome by McC950 Improves the Metabolic Outcome of Islet Transplantation by Suppressing IL-1β and Islet Cellular Death

NLRP3 inflammasome-related gene (Nlrp3 and Il1b) expression was upregulated in islets stimulated with proinflammatory cytokines and suppressed when incubated with MCC950.
[Scientific Reports]
Matsuoka, T., Yoshimatsu, G., Sakata, N., Kawakami, R., Tanaka, T., Yamada, T., Yoshida, Y., Hasegawa, S., & Kodama, S. (2020). Inhibition of NLRP3 inflammasome by MCC950 improves the metabolic outcome of islet transplantation by suppressing IL-1β and islet cellular death. Scientific Reports, 10(1), 17920. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-74786-3 Cite
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Single-Cell RNA-Seq Reveals that CD9 Is a Negative Marker of Glucose-Responsive Pancreatic β-like Cells Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

Scientists observed more CD9+C-PEPTIDE+ β cells in the fetal than in the adult cadaveric islets and more Ki67+ proliferating cells among CD9+ fetal β cells. Their experiments showed CD9 as a cell-surface marker for negative enrichment of glucose-responsive β-like cells differentiated from human PSCs.
[Stem Cell Reports]
Li, X., Yang, K. Y., Chan, V. W., Leung, K. T., Zhang, X.-B., Wong, A. S., Chong, C. C. N., Wang, C. C., Ku, M., & Lui, K. O. (2020). Single-Cell RNA-Seq Reveals that CD9 Is a Negative Marker of Glucose-Responsive Pancreatic β-like Cells Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells. Stem Cell Reports, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.stemcr.2020.09.009 Cite
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Single-Cell RNA-Seq Reveals that CD9 Is a Negative Marker of Glucose-Responsive Pancreatic β-like Cells Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

Researchers purified β-like cells for spontaneous formation of islet-like organoids against CD9, and found significantly more NKX6.1+MAFA+C-PEPTIDE+ β-like cells in the CD9− than in the CD9+ population.
[Cell Stem Cell]
Li, X., Yang, K. Y., Chan, V. W., Leung, K. T., Zhang, X.-B., Wong, A. S., Chong, C. C. N., Wang, C. C., Ku, M., & Lui, K. O. (2020). Single-Cell RNA-Seq Reveals that CD9 Is a Negative Marker of Glucose-Responsive Pancreatic β-like Cells Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells. Stem Cell Reports, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.stemcr.2020.09.009 Cite
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Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis: The Role of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptors

The authors summarize and discuss the current literature on nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) as the liver manifestation of the systemic metabolic syndrome and focuses on the role of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors in the pathomechanisms as well as in the potential targeting of disease.
[Nature Reviews Gastroenterology & Hepatology]
Francque, S., Szabo, G., Abdelmalek, M. F., Byrne, C. D., Cusi, K., Dufour, J.-F., Roden, M., Sacks, F., & Tacke, F. (2020). Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis: the role of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors. Nature Reviews Gastroenterology & Hepatology, 1–16. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41575-020-00366-5 Cite
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The Efficiency of Insulin Production and Its Content in Insulin-Expressing Model β-Cells Correlate with Their Zn2+ Levels

Scientists systematically compared zinc and insulin contents in the permanent INS-1E and BRIN-BD11 β-cells and in the native rat pancreatic islets by flow cytometry, confocal microscopy, immunoblotting, specific messenger RNA and total insulin analysis.
[Open Biology]
Dzianová, P., Asai, S., Chrudinová, M., Kosinová, L., Potalitsyn, P., Šácha, P., Hadravová, R., Selicharová, I., Kříž, J., Turkenburg, J. P., Brzozowski, A. M., Jiráček, J., & Žáková, L. (n.d.). The efficiency of insulin production and its content in insulin-expressing model β-cells correlate with their Zn2+ levels. Open Biology, 10(10), 200137. https://doi.org/10.1098/rsob.200137 Cite
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Stabler Awarded R01 Grant From the NIH NIDDKD

Congratulations to Cherie Stabler, Ph.D., professor in the J. Crayton Pruitt Family Department of Biomedical Engineering, for receiving a $1.7 million RO1 grant from the NIH National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) for her project, “Engineering Immunomodulatory Nanoscale Coatings for Protecting Islet Transplants.”
[The University of Florida]
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Targeting Interleukin-17 Receptor B Enhances Gemcitabine Sensitivity through Downregulation of Mucins in Pancreatic Cancer

Investigators showed interlukine-17 receptor B (IL-17RB) expression was positively correlated with mucin 1 (MUC1) and MUC4 expression in pancreatic cancer cells and tumor tissue.
[Scientific Reports]
Tsai, L.-H., Hsu, K.-W., Chiang, C.-M., Yang, H.-J., Liu, Y.-H., Yang, S.-F., Peng, P.-H., Cheng, W.-C., & Wu, H.-H. (2020). Targeting interleukin-17 receptor B enhances gemcitabine sensitivity through downregulation of mucins in pancreatic cancer. Scientific Reports, 10(1), 17817. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-73659-z Cite
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Tumor Treating Fields (TTF) Treatment Enhances Radiation-Induced Apoptosis in Pancreatic Cancer Cells

In CFPAC-I and HPAF-II pancreatic cancer cell lines, the combined in vitro effect of tumor treating fields and radiotherapy was evaluated by measuring cell counts, markers of apoptosis, and clonogenic cell survival.
[International Journal of Radiation Biology]
Jo, Y., Oh, G., Gi, Y., Sung, H., Joo, E. B., Lee, S., & Yoon, M. (2020). Tumor treating fields (TTF) treatment enhances radiation-induced apoptosis in pancreatic cancer cells. International Journal of Radiation Biology, 0(ja), 1–19. https://doi.org/10.1080/09553002.2020.1838658 Cite
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SPARC Promotes Insulin Secretion through Down-Regulation of RGS4 Protein in Pancreatic β Cells

Researchers showed that SPARC enhanced the promoting effect of Muscarinic receptor agonist oxotremorine-M on insulin secretion in cultured mouse islets. Overexpression of SPARC down-regulated RGS4, a negative regulator of β-cell M3 muscarinic receptors.
[Scientific Reports]
Hu, L., He, F., Huang, M., Zhao, Q., Cheng, L., Said, N., Zhou, Z., Liu, F., & Dai, Y.-S. (2020). SPARC promotes insulin secretion through down-regulation of RGS4 protein in pancreatic β cells. Scientific Reports, 10(1), 17581. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-74593-w Cite
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Exploiting Oxidative Phosphorylation to Promote the Stem and Immunoevasive Properties of Pancreatic Cancer Stem Cells

Investigators describe a 2D in vitro system for long-term enrichment of pancreatic cancer stem cells (CSCs) that was amenable to biological and CSC-specific studies.
[Nature Communications]
Valle, S., Alcalá, S., Martin-Hijano, L., Cabezas-Sáinz, P., Navarro, D., Muñoz, E. R., Yuste, L., Tiwary, K., Walter, K., Ruiz-Cañas, L., Alonso-Nocelo, M., Rubiolo, J. A., González-Arnay, E., Heeschen, C., Garcia-Bermejo, L., Hermann, P. C., Sánchez, L., Sancho, P., Fernández-Moreno, M. Á., & Sainz, B. (2020). Exploiting oxidative phosphorylation to promote the stem and immunoevasive properties of pancreatic cancer stem cells. Nature Communications, 11(1), 5265. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-18954-z Cite
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