Distinct expression of C1q-like family mRNAs in mouse brain and biochemical characterization of their encoded proteins.
ABSTRACT Many members of the C1q family, including complement C1q and adiponectin, and the structurally related tumor necrosis factor family are secreted and play crucial roles in intercellular signaling. Among them, the Cbln (precerebellin) and C1q-like (C1ql) subfamilies are highly and predominantly expressed in the central nervous system. Although the Cbln subfamily serve as essential trans-neuronal regulators of synaptic integrity in the cerebellum, the functions of the C1ql subfamily (C1ql1-C1ql4) remain unexplored. Here, we investigated the gene expression of the C1ql subfamily in the adult and developing mouse brain by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and high-resolution in-situ hybridization. In the adult brain, C1ql1-C1ql3 mRNAs were mainly expressed in neurons but weak expression was seen in glia-like structures in the adult brain. The C1ql1 mRNA was predominantly expressed in the inferior olive, whereas the C1ql2 and C1ql3 mRNAs were strongly coexpressed in the dentate gyrus. Although the C1ql1 and C1ql3 mRNAs were detectable as early as embryonic day 13, the C1ql2 mRNA was observed at later embryonic stages. The C1ql1 mRNA was also expressed transiently in the external granular layer of the cerebellum. Biochemical characterization in heterologous cells revealed that all of the C1ql subfamily proteins were secreted and they formed both homomeric and heteromeric complexes. They also formed hexameric and higher-order complexes via their N-terminal cysteine residues. These results suggest that, like Cbln, the C1ql subfamily has distinct spatial and temporal expression patterns and may play diverse roles by forming homomeric and heteromeric complexes in the central nervous system.
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ABSTRACT: Members of the C1q/TNF family play important and diverse roles in the immune, endocrine, skeletal, vascular, and sensory systems. Here, we identify and characterize CTRP13, a new and extremely conserved member of the C1q/TNF family. CTRP13 is preferentially expressed by adipose tissue and the brain in mice and predominantly by adipose tissue in humans. Within mouse adipose tissue, CTRP13 is largely expressed by cells of the stromal vascular compartment. Due to sexually dimorphic expression patterns, female mice have higher transcript and circulating CTRP13 levels than males. CTRP13 transcript and circulating levels are elevated in obese male mice, suggesting a potential role in energy metabolism. The insulin-sensitizing drug rosiglitazone also increases the expression of CTRP13 in adipocytes, which correlates with the insulin-sensitizing action of CTRP13. In a heterologous expression system, CTRP13 is secreted as a disulfide-linked oligomeric protein. When co-expressed, CTRP13 forms heteromeric complexes with a closely related family member, CTRP10. This heteromeric association does not involve conserved N-terminal Cys residues. Functional studies using purified recombinant protein demonstrated that CTRP13 is an adipokine that promotes glucose uptake in adipocytes, myotubes, and hepatocytes via activation of the AMPK signaling pathway. CTRP13 also ameliorates lipid-induced insulin resistance in hepatocytes through suppression of the SAPK/JNK stress signaling that impairs the insulin signaling pathway. Further, CTRP13 reduces glucose output in hepatocytes by inhibiting the mRNA expression of gluconeogenic enzymes, glucose-6-phosphatase and the cytosolic form of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase. These results provide the first functional characterization of CTRP13 and establish its importance in glucose homeostasis.Journal of Biological Chemistry 03/2011; 286(18):15652-65. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Microglia, the resident immune cells of the central nervous system (CNS), have two distinct phenotypes in the developing brain: amoeboid form, known to be amoeboid microglial cells (AMC) and ramified form, known to be ramified microglial cells (RMC). The AMC are characterized by being proliferative, phagocytic and migratory whereas the RMC are quiescent and exhibit a slow turnover rate. The AMC transform into RMC with advancing age, and this transformation is indicative of the gradual shift in the microglial functions. Both AMC and RMC respond to CNS inflammation, and they become hypertrophic when activated by trauma, infection or neurodegenerative stimuli. The molecular mechanisms and functional significance of morphological transformation of microglia during normal development and in disease conditions is not clear. It is hypothesized that AMC and RMC are functionally regulated by a specific set of genes encoding various signaling molecules and transcription factors. To address this, we carried out cDNA microarray analysis using lectin-labeled AMC and RMC isolated from frozen tissue sections of the corpus callosum of 5-day and 4-week old rat brain respectively, by laser capture microdissection. The global gene expression profiles of both microglial phenotypes were compared and the differentially expressed genes in AMC and RMC were clustered based on their functional annotations. This genome wide comparative analysis identified genes that are specific to AMC and RMC. The novel and specific molecules identified from the trancriptome explains the quiescent state functioning of microglia in its two distinct morphological states.BMC Neuroscience 06/2012; 13:64. · 3.00 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Genetic influences on the predisposition to complex behavioral or physiological traits can reflect genetic polymorphisms that lead to altered gene product function, and/or variations in gene expression levels. We have explored quantitative variations in an animal's alcohol consumption, using a genetical genomic/phenomic approach. In our studies, gene expression is correlated with amount of alcohol consumed, and genomic regions that regulate the alcohol consumption behavior and the quantitative levels of gene expression (behavioral and expression quantitative trait loci [QTL]) are determined and used as a filter to identify candidate genes predisposing the behavior. We determined QTLs for alcohol consumption using the LXS panel of recombinant inbred mice. We then identified genes that were: 1) differentially expressed between five high and five low alcohol-consuming lines or strains of mice; and 2) were physically located in, or had an expression QTL (eQTL) within the alcohol consumption QTLs. Comparison of mRNA and protein levels in brains of high and low alcohol consuming mice led us to a bioinformatic examination of potential regulation by microRNAs of an identified candidate transcript, Gnb1 (G protein beta subunit 1). We combined our current analysis with our earlier work identifying candidate genes for the alcohol consumption trait in mice, rats and humans. Our overall analysis leads us to postulate that the activity of the GABAergic system, and in particular GABA release and GABA receptor trafficking and signaling, which involves G protein function, contributes significantly to genetic variation in the predisposition to varying levels of alcohol consumption. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Trends in neuropharmacology: in memory of Erminio Costa'.Neuropharmacology 12/2010; 60(7-8):1269-80. · 4.11 Impact Factor