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ArcKR expression modifies synaptic plasticity following epileptic activity: Differential effects with in vitro and in vivo seizure-induction protocols

Amol Bhandare, Maisy Haley, Vanessa Torrico Anderson, Luana B. Domingos, Marcia Lopes, Sonia A. L. Corrêa, Mark J. Wall

Pathological forms of neural activity, such as epileptic seizures, modify the expression pattern of multiple proteins, leading to persistent changes in brain function. One such protein is activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein (Arc), which is critically involved in protein-synthesis–dependent synaptic plasticity underlying learning and memory. In the present study, we have investigated how the expression of ArcKR, a form of Arc in which the ubiquitination sites have been mutated, resulting in slowed Arc degradation, modifies group I metabotropic glutamate receptor–mediated long-term depression (G1-mGluR-LTD) following seizures. We have shown that expression of ArcKR, a form of Arc in which degradation is reduced, significantly modulates the magnitude of G1-mGluR-LTD following epileptic seizures. However, the effect of ArcKR on LTD depends on the epileptic model used, with enhancement of LTD in an in vitro model and a reduction in the kainate mouse model.

Epilepsia. May 2024

Wed 12 Jun 2024, 07:58 | Tags: Neuroscience

The 2024 Europe report of the Lancet Countdown on health and climate change: unprecedented warming demands unprecedented action

Kim R van Daalen et al incl. Orin Courtenay

The Lancet Countdown in Europe was established in 2021, to assess the health profile of climate change aiming to stimulate European social and political will to implement rapid health-responsive climate mitigation and adaptation actions. In 2022, the collaboration published its indicator report, tracking progress on health and climate change via 33 indicators and across five domains. This new report tracks 42 indicators highlighting the negative impacts of climate change on human health, the delayed climate action of European countries, and the missed opportunities to protect or improve health with health-responsive climate action. Considering that negative climate-related health impacts and the responsibility for climate change are not equal at the regional and global levels, this report also endeavours to reflect on aspects of inequality and justice by highlighting at-risk groups within Europe and Europe's responsibility for the climate crisis.

Lancet Public Heath. May 2024

Mon 10 Jun 2024, 08:17 | Tags: Microbiology & Infectious Disease

Epidemiological and health economic implications of symptom propagation in respiratory pathogens : a mathematical modelling investigation

Asplin, Phoebe, Keeling, Matt J., Mancy, Rebecca and Hill, Edward M.

We propose a novel framework for incorporating different levels of symptom propagation into models of infectious disease transmission via a single parameter, α. Varying α tunes the model from having no symptom propagation (α = 0, as typically assumed) to one where symptoms always propagate (α = 1). For parameters corresponding to three respiratory pathogens—seasonal influenza, pandemic influenza and SARS-CoV-2—we explored how symptom propagation impacted the relative epidemiological and health-economic performance of three interventions, conceptualised as vaccines with different actions: symptom-attenuating (labelled SA), infection-blocking (IB) and infection-blocking admitting only mild breakthrough infections (IB_MB). Overall, the preferred intervention type depended on the combination of the strength of symptom propagation and uptake. Given the importance of determining robust public health responses, we highlight the need to gather further data on symptom propagation, with our modelling framework acting as a template for future analysis.

PLoS Computational Biology. May 2024

Fri 07 Jun 2024, 08:20 | Tags: Microbiology & Infectious Disease

Unveiling novel Neocosmospora species from Thai mangroves as potent biocontrol agents against Colletotrichum species

Klomchit, A, Calabon, MS, Worabandit, S, Weaver, JA, Karima, EM, Alberti, F, Greco, C and Mahanil, S

This study aims to investigate the taxonomy, biosynthetic potential, and application of three newly isolated Neocosmospora species from mangrove habitats in the southern part of Thailand using phylogeny, bioactivity screening, genome sequencing, and bioinformatics analysis.

Two fungal isolates of Neocosmospora and a new species of N. mangrovei were reported in this study. These fungal strains showed activity against pathogenic fungi causing anthracnose in chili. In addition, full genome sequencing and bioinformatics analysis of N. mangrovei MFLUCC 17–0253 were obtained.

Journal of Applied Microbiology. May 2024

Astrocyte ryanodine receptors facilitate gliotransmission and astroglial modulation of synaptic plasticity

Ulyana Lalo, Yuriy Pankratov

Intracellular Ca2+-signaling in astrocytes is instrumental for their brain “housekeeping” role and astroglial control of synaptic plasticity. An important source for elevating the cytosolic Ca2+ level in astrocytes is a release from endoplasmic reticulum which can be triggered via two fundamental pathways: IP3 receptors and calcium-induced calcium release (CICR) mediated by Ca2+-sensitive ryanodine receptors (RyRs). We explored the role for ryanodine receptors in the modulation of cytosolic Ca2+-signaling in the cortical and hippocampal astrocytes, astrocyte-neuron communication and astroglia modulation of synaptic plasticity. Our data demonstrate that ryanodine receptors are essential for astrocytic Ca2+-signaling and efficient astrocyte-neuron communications. The RyR-mediated CICR contributes to astrocytic control of synaptic plasticity and can underlie, at least partially, neuroprotective and cognitive effects of caffein.

Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience. May 2024

Mon 03 Jun 2024, 08:26 | Tags: Neuroscience Cells & Development

A distinct, high affinity, alkaline phosphatase facilitates occupation of P-depleted environments by marine picocyanobacteria

Alberto Torcello-Requena, Andrew Murphy, Ian D. E. A. Lidbury, Frances D. Pitt, Richard Stark, Andrew D. Millard, Richard J. Puxty, Yin Chen, David J. Scanlan

Marine picocyanobacteria of the genera Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus, the two most abundant phototrophs on Earth, thrive in oligotrophic oceanic regions. While it is well known that specific lineages are exquisitely adapted to prevailing in situ light and temperature regimes, much less is known of the molecular machinery required to facilitate occupancy of these low-nutrient environments. Here, we describe a hitherto unknown alkaline phosphatase, Psip1, that has a substantially higher affinity for phosphomonoesters than other well-known phosphatases like PhoA, PhoX, or PhoD and is restricted to clade III Synechococcus and a subset of high light I-adapted Prochlorococcus strains, suggesting niche specificity.

PNAS. May 2024

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