Biochemistry and Pharmacology - Research Publications

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    Photophysical Identification of Three Kinds of Low-Energy Green Band Defects in Wide-Bandgap Polyfluorenes
    Bo, Y-F ; Liu, Y-Y ; Soleimaninejad, H ; Yu, M-N ; Xie, L-H ; Smith, TA ; Ghiggino, KP ; Huang, W (AMER CHEMICAL SOC, 2019-04-04)
    Blue-light-emitting semiconductors based on polyfluorenes often exhibit an undesired green emission band. In this report, three well-defined oligofluorenes corresponding to three types of "defects" attributed to aggregation, keto formation, and chain entanglement, respectively, are systemically investigated to unveil the origins of the green emission band in fluorene-based materials. First, the optical properties of defect molecules in different states are studied. The defect associated with aggregation is absent in dilute solutions and in films doped at 0.01 wt % with poly(methyl methacrylate). Second, the dependence of the emission spectra on the solvent was monitored to compare the effects of the "keto-" and "chain-entanglement defect" molecules. The green emission of keto defects exhibited a strong dependence on solvent polarity, whereas this cannot be observed in case of chain-entanglement defect. Third, energy transfer between poly[4-(octyloxy)-9,9-diphenylfluoren-2,7-diyl]- co-[5-(octyloxy)-9,9-diphenyl-fluoren-2,7-diyl] and the keto or chain-entanglement defect molecules is illustrated. Compared to those of the chain-entanglement defect, the spectra of the keto defect molecule (1:10-3) show signs of defect emission at lower proportions. These investigations not only provide insight into the photophysics of oligofluorenes but also supply a new strategy to explore defects in semiconductor polymers, which will aid in the development of effective approaches to obtain stable, pure blue organic light-emitting diodes based on polyfluorenes.
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    Photophysical and Fluorescence Anisotropic Behavior of Polyfluorene β-Conformation Films
    Yu, M-N ; Soleimaninejad, H ; Lin, J-Y ; Zuo, Z-Y ; Liu, B ; Bo, Y-F ; Bai, L-B ; Han, Y-M ; Smith, TA ; Xu, M ; Wu, X-P ; Dunstan, DE ; Xia, R-D ; Xie, L-H ; Bradley, DDC ; Huang, W (AMER CHEMICAL SOC, 2018-01-18)
    We demonstrate a systematic visualization of the unique photophysical and fluorescence anisotropic properties of polyfluorene coplanar conformation (β-conformation) using time-resolved scanning confocal fluorescence imaging (FLIM) and fluorescence anisotropy imaging microscopy (FAIM) measurements. We observe inhomogeneous morphologies and fluorescence decay profiles at various micrometer-sized regions within all types of polyfluorene β-conformational spin-coated films. Poly(9,9-dioctylfluorene-2,7-diyl) (PFO) and poly[4-(octyloxy)-9,9-diphenylfluoren-2,7-diyl]-co-[5-(octyloxy)-9,9-diphenylfluoren-2,7-diyl] (PODPF) β-domains both have shorter lifetime than those of the glassy conformation for the longer effective conjugated length and rigid chain structures. Besides, β-conformational regions have larger fluorescence anisotropy for the low molecular rotational motion and high chain orientation, while the low anisotropy in glassy conformational regions shows more rotational freedom of the chain and efficient energy migration from amorphous regions to β-conformation as a whole. Finally, ultrastable ASE threshold in the PODPF β-conformational films also confirms its potential application in organic lasers. In this regard, FLIM and FAIM measurements provide an effective platform to explore the fundamental photophysical process of conformational transitions in conjugated polymer.
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    Highly Efficient Luminescent Solar Concentrators by Selective Alignment of Donor-Emitter Fluorophores
    Zhang, B ; Gao, C ; Soleimaninejad, H ; White, JM ; Smith, TA ; Jones, DJ ; Ghiggino, KP ; Wong, WWH (AMER CHEMICAL SOC, 2019-04-23)
    Vertically aligning fluorophores to the surface of a waveguide is known to be an effective approach to improve the optical quantum efficiency (OQE) of luminescent solar concentrators (LSCs). While the chromophore alignment assists waveguiding of the emitted photons to the LSC edges, it also significantly reduces the light-harvesting properties of the LSC. We report here a fluorophore pair consisting of a sphere-shaped energy donor and a rod-shaped emitter that was incorporated in LSCs to provide selective fluorophore alignment to address the reduced incident-light absorption issue. A liquid-crystal polymer matrix was used to perpendicularly align the rod-shaped acceptors to a favorable orientation for light guiding, while the sphere-shaped donor was randomly oriented to maintain its light-absorbing properties. The OQE of LSC devices with this selectively aligned donor-acceptor fluorophore system is 78% without significant loss of light-harvesting capability.
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    FRET-enhanced photoluminescence of perylene diimides by combining molecular aggregation and insulation
    Zhang, B ; Lyskov, I ; Wilson, LJ ; Sabatini, RP ; Manian, A ; Soleimaninejad, H ; White, JM ; Smith, TA ; Lakhwani, G ; Jones, DJ ; Ghiggino, KP ; Russo, SP ; Wong, WWH (Royal Society of Chemistry, 2020-07-14)
    The photoluminescence quantum yield (ϕPL) of perylene diimide derivatives (PDIs) is often limited by aggregation caused quenching (ACQ) at high concentration or in the neat solid-state. Energy transfer in high dye concentration systems is also a key factor in determining ϕPL as a result of energy funneling to trap sites in the sample. By tuning the substituents, we present two classes of PDIs with aggregation and insulation of the PDI core. By combining these fluorophores in a polymer film, we demonstrate highly emissive samples (85% ϕPL) at high concentration (140 mM or 20% w/w). Experimental and theoretical studies provide insight into why such a combination is necessary to achieve high ϕPL. While insulated fluorophores maintain respectable ϕPL at high concentration, an improved ϕPL can be achieved in the presence of appropriately oriented fluorophore aggregates as emissive traps. The theoretical calculations show that the relative orientation of aggregated monomers can result in energetic separation of localized states from the charge-transfer and bi-excitonic states thereby enabling high ϕPL.
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    Next Generation Cell Culture Tools Featuring Micro‐ and Nanotopographies for Biological Screening (Adv. Funct. Mater. 3/2022)
    Carthew, J ; Abdelmaksoud, HH ; Cowley, KJ ; Hodgson‐Garms, M ; Elnathan, R ; Spatz, JP ; Brugger, J ; Thissen, H ; Simpson, KJ ; Voelcker, NH ; Frith, JE ; Cadarso, VJ (Wiley, 2022-01)
    In article number 2100881, Nicolas H. Voelcker, Jessica E. Frith, Victor J. Cadarso, and co-workers demonstrate a novel approach to imprint micro and nanoscaled topographical features into conventional cell cultureware, facilitating its compatibility with standard biological techniques. This enables high-throughput screening to integrate the effects of surface topographies into unique cell specific responses and fate determination.
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    Extracellular vesicular lipids as biomarkers for the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease
    Su, H ; Rustam, YH ; Masters, CL ; Makalic, E ; McLean, C ; Hill, AF ; Barnham, KJ ; Reid, GE ; Vella, LJ (Wiley, 2021-12-31)
    An increasing number of studies have revealed that dysregulated lipid homeostasis is associated with the pathological processes that lead to Alzheimer’s disease (AD). If changes in key lipid species could be detected in the periphery, it would advance our understanding of the disease and facilitate biomarker discovery. Global lipidomic profiling of sera/blood however has proved challenging with limited disease or tissue specificity. Small extracellular vesicles (EV) in the central nervous system, can pass the blood-brain barrier and enter the periphery, carrying a subset of lipids that could reflect lipid homeostasis in brain. This makes EVs uniquely suited for peripheral biomarker exploration.
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    Mof (MYST1 or KAT8) is essential for progression of embryonic development past the blastocyst stage and required for normal chromatin architecture
    Thomas, T ; Dixon, MP ; Kueh, AJ ; Voss, AK (AMER SOC MICROBIOLOGY, 2008-08)
    Acetylation of histone tails is a hallmark of transcriptionally active chromatin. Mof (males absent on the first; also called MYST1 or KAT8) is a member of the MYST family of histone acetyltransferases and was originally discovered as an essential component of the X chromosome dosage compensation system in Drosophila. In order to examine the role of Mof in mammals in vivo, we generated mice carrying a null mutation of the Mof gene. All Mof-deficient embryos fail to develop beyond the expanded blastocyst stage and die at implantation in vivo. Mof-deficient cell lines cannot be derived from Mof(-/-) embryos in vitro. Mof(-/-) embryos fail to acetylate histone 4 lysine 16 (H4K16) but have normal acetylation of other N-terminal histone lysine residues. Mof(-/-) cell nuclei exhibit abnormal chromatin aggregation preceding activation of caspase 3 and DNA fragmentation. We conclude that Mof is functionally nonredundant with the closely related MYST histone acetyltransferase Tip60. Our results show that Mof performs a different role in mammals from that in flies at the organism level, although the molecular function is conserved. We demonstrate that Mof is required specifically for the maintenance of H4K16 acetylation and normal chromatin architecture of all cells of early male and female embryos.
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    Tissue hyperplasia and enhanced T-cell signalling via ZAP-70 in c-Cbl-deficient mice
    Murphy, MA ; Schnall, RG ; Venter, DJ ; Barnett, L ; Bertoncello, I ; Thien, CBF ; Langdon, WY ; Bowtell, DDL (AMER SOC MICROBIOLOGY, 1998-08)
    The c-Cbl protein is tyrosine phosphorylated and forms complexes with a wide range of signalling partners in response to various growth factors. How c-Cbl interacts with proteins, such as Grb2, phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase, and phosphorylated receptors, is well understood, but its role in these complexes is unclear. Recently, the Caenorhabditis elegans Cbl homolog, Sli-1, was shown to act as a negative regulator of epidermal growth factor receptor signalling. This finding forced a reassessment of the role of Cbl proteins and highlighted the desirability of testing genetically whether c-Cbl acts as a negative regulator of mammalian signalling. Here we investigate the role of c-Cbl in development and homeostasis in mice by targeted disruption of the c-Cbl locus. c-Cbl-deficient mice were viable, fertile, and outwardly normal in appearance. Bone development and remodelling also appeared normal in c-Cbl mutants, despite a previously reported requirement for c-Cbl in osteoclast function. However, consistent with a high level of expression of c-Cbl in the hemopoietic compartment, c-Cbl-deficient mice displayed marked changes in their hemopoietic profiles, including altered T-cell receptor expression, lymphoid hyperplasia, and primary splenic extramedullary hemopoiesis. The mammary fat pads of mutant female mice also showed increased ductal density and branching compared to those of their wild-type littermates, indicating an unanticipated role for c-Cbl in regulating mammary growth. Collectively, the hyperplastic histological changes seen in c-Cbl mutant mice are indicative of a normal role for c-Cbl in negatively regulating signalling events that control cell growth. Consistent with this view, we observed greatly increased intracellular protein tyrosine phosphorylation in thymocytes following CD3epsilon cross-linking. In particular, phosphorylation of ZAP-70 kinase in thymocytes was uncoupled from a requirement for CD4-mediated Lck activation. This study provides the first biochemical characterization of any organism that is deficient in a member of this unique protein family. Our findings demonstrate critical roles for c-Cbl in hemopoiesis and in controlling cellular proliferation and signalling by the Syk/ZAP-70 family of protein kinases.
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    The yeast inositol polyphosphate 5-phosphatases Inp52p and Inp53p translocate to actin patches following hyperosmotic stress: Mechanism for regulating phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate at plasma membrane invaginations
    Ooms, LM ; McColl, BK ; Wiradjaja, F ; Wijayaratnam, APW ; Gleeson, P ; Gething, MJ ; Sambrook, J ; Mitchell, CA (AMER SOC MICROBIOLOGY, 2000-12)
    The Saccharomyces cerevisiae inositol polyphosphate 5-phosphatases (Inp51p, Inp52p, and Inp53p) each contain an N-terminal Sac1 domain, followed by a 5-phosphatase domain and a C-terminal proline-rich domain. Disruption of any two of these 5-phosphatases results in abnormal vacuolar and plasma membrane morphology. We have cloned and characterized the Sac1-containing 5-phosphatases Inp52p and Inp53p. Purified recombinant Inp52p lacking the Sac1 domain hydrolyzed phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PtdIns(4,5)P(2)] and PtdIns(3, 5)P(2). Inp52p and Inp53p were expressed in yeast as N-terminal fusion proteins with green fluorescent protein (GFP). In resting cells recombinant GFP-tagged 5-phosphatases were expressed diffusely throughout the cell but were excluded from the nucleus. Following hyperosmotic stress the GFP-tagged 5-phosphatases rapidly and transiently associated with actin patches, independent of actin, in both the mother and daughter cells of budding yeast as demonstrated by colocalization with rhodamine phalloidin. Both the Sac1 domain and proline-rich domains were able to independently mediate translocation of Inp52p to actin patches, following hyperosmotic stress, while the Inp53p proline-rich domain alone was sufficient for stress-mediated localization. Overexpression of Inp52p or Inp53p, but not catalytically inactive Inp52p, which lacked PtdIns(4,5)P(2) 5-phosphatase activity, resulted in a dramatic reduction in the repolarization time of actin patches following hyperosmotic stress. We propose that the osmotic-stress-induced translocation of Inp52p and Inp53p results in the localized regulation of PtdIns(3,5)P(2) and PtdIns(4,5)P(2) at actin patches and associated plasma membrane invaginations. This may provide a mechanism for regulating actin polymerization and cell growth as an acute adaptive response to hyperosmotic stress.
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    Impaired cardiac contractility response to hemodynamic stress in S100A1-deficient mice
    Du, XJ ; Cole, TJ ; Tenis, N ; Gao, XM ; Köntgen, F ; Kemp, BE ; Heierhorst, J (AMER SOC MICROBIOLOGY, 2002-04)
    Ca(2+) signaling plays a central role in cardiac contractility and adaptation to increased hemodynamic demand. We have generated mice with a targeted deletion of the S100A1 gene coding for the major cardiac isoform of the large multigenic S100 family of EF hand Ca(2+)-binding proteins. S100A1(-/-) mice have normal cardiac function under baseline conditions but have significantly reduced contraction rate and relaxation rate responses to beta-adrenergic stimulation that are associated with a reduced Ca(2+) sensitivity. In S100A1(-/-) mice, basal left-ventricular contractility deteriorated following 3-week pressure overload by thoracic aorta constriction despite a normal adaptive hypertrophy. Surprisingly, heterozygotes also had an impaired response to acute beta-adrenergic stimulation but maintained normal contractility in response to chronic pressure overload that coincided with S100A1 upregulation to wild-type levels. In contrast to other genetic models with impaired cardiac contractility, loss of S100A1 did not lead to cardiac hypertrophy or dilation in aged mice. The data demonstrate that high S100A1 protein levels are essential for the cardiac reserve and adaptation to acute and chronic hemodynamic stress in vivo.