Platelet-activating factor-like activity isolated from Trypanosoma cruzi.
ABSTRACT Platelet-activating factor is a phospholipid mediator that exhibits a wide variety of physiological and pathophysiological effects, including induction of inflammatory response, chemotaxis and cellular differentiation. Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiological agent of Chagas' disease, is transmitted by triatomine insects and while in the triatomine midgut the parasite differentiates from a non-infective epimastigote stage into the pathogenic trypomastigote metacyclic form. We have previously demonstrated that platelet activating factor triggers in vitro cell differentiation of T. cruzi. Here we show a platelet activating factor-like activity isolated from lipid extract of T. cruzi epimastigotes incubated in the presence of [14C]acetate. Trypanosoma cruzi-platelet activating factor-like lipid induced the aggregation of rabbit platelets, which was prevented by platelet activating factor-acetylhydrolase. Mouse macrophage infection by T. cruzi was stimulated when epimastigotes were kept for 5 days in the presence of T. cruzi-platelet activating factor, before interacting with the macrophages. The differentiation of epimastigotes into metacyclic trypomastigotes was also triggered by T. cruzi-platelet activating factor. These effects were abrogated by a platelet activating factor antagonist, WEB 2086. Polyclonal antibody raised against mouse platelet activating factor receptor showed labelling for T. cruzi epimastigotes using immunoblotting and immunofluorescence assays. These data suggest that T. cruzi contain the components of an autocrine platelet activating factor-like ligand-receptor system that modulates cell differentiation towards the infectious stage.
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ABSTRACT: We have examined the metabolism of three radiolabeled 1,2-diacylglycerols (DGs) in NIH 3T3 fibroblasts. Since the lipids used are not appreciably taken up by the cells, we used a phosphatidylserine (PS)-based liposome fusion system to rapidly associate the lipid species with the plasma membrane. When 1,2-[1-14C]dioleoyl-sn-3-glycerol ([14C]DOG) is delivered in this way, it is rapidly converted predominantly to phosphatidylcholine (PC) and triacylglycerol (TG) and to a lesser extent, to monoacylglycerol (MG) and fatty acids (FA), as well as phosphatidic acid (PA) and phosphatidylinositol (PI). We present evidence that [14C] DOG is largely utilized as an intact molecule rather than being broken down to FA and then incorporated to cell lipids. Examination of the metabolism of 1-stearoyl-2-[1-14C]myristoyl-sn-3-glycerol ([14C]SMG) and 1-stearoyl-2-arachidonoyl-sn-3-glycerol ([14C]SAG) reveal important differences. Both produce substantial labeling of PC but [14C]SMG gives rise to the highest proportion of TG and the lowest of PA and PI, whereas [14C]SAG yields the opposite pattern. When phosphatidic acid labeled on its glycerol backbone (1,2-dioleoyl-sn-[U-14C] glycero-3-phosphate) was supplied to the cells via the liposomes, rapid appearance of labeled DG was found which then decreased with concomitant labeling of cellular PC and TG. Only small amounts of the glycerol backbone were recovered in PI. Our experiments identify three types of processes involved in the metabolism of plasma membrane DGs: (i) transferase-catalyzed conversions to PC and TG, (ii) lipolytic breakdown to MG and FA, and (iii) phosphorylation to PA and then conversion to PI. The relative proportions of each DG species converted to these different products are strongly dependent on the fatty acyl composition of the particular DG molecular species, even though formation of PC is the major event in all cases. Since DGs are important second messengers, our study supports the view that conversion to PC and TG can play a key role in DG signal attenuation.Journal of Biological Chemistry 08/1992; 267(21):14783-9. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The effects of platelet-activating factor (PAF) on the ecto-phosphatase activity of Trypanosoma cruzi were investigated. Living parasites hydrolyzed p-nitrophenyl phosphate (p-NPP) at a rate of 5.71 +/- 0.37 nmol P(i) mg(-1) min(-1). This ecto-phosphatase activity increased to 8.70 +/- 1.12 nmol P(i) mg(-1) min(-1) when the cells were grown in the presence of 10(-9) M PAF. This effect was probably due to stimulation of the release of the ecto-phosphatase and/or the secretion of an intracellular phosphatase to the extracellular medium, as suggested by cytochemical analysis. Modulation of the ecto-phosphatase activity was also observed when PAF was added during the time course of the reaction. WEB 2086, a competitive PAF antagonist, was able to revert PAF effects when both were used at the same concentration. When PAF was added to a membrane enriched fraction preparation of T. cruzi, no alteration on the phosphatase activity was observed. This result suggests an involvement of intracellular signaling, as PAF was only effective on intact cells. Sphingosine and phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate (PMA) were then used to investigate a possible involvement of protein kinase C (PKC) with PAF-induced phosphatase secretion. Sphingosine by itself stimulated the secretion of a phosphatase but did not significantly interfere with PAF effects on this enzyme. On the other hand, PMA was able to abrogate PAF-induced release of this phosphatase. These data are highly suggestive of a putative involvement of signal transduction mediated by a ligand of mammalian origin (PAF), through PKC and a specific receptor located on the cell surface of the human parasite Trypanosoma cruzi.Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 01/2000; 266(1):36-42. · 2.41 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A new thrombin inhibitor, bothrojaracin, has been identified and purified to homogeneity from the venom of Bothrops jararaca, the most common venomous snake of South America. Bothrojaracin has an isoelectric point of 4.2 and a molecular mass of 27 kDa and is made of two distinct polypeptide chains of 15 and 13 kDa, linked by disulfide bridges. Purified bothrojaracin is devoid of phospholipase A2, amidolytic, or fibrino (geno)lytic activity. Bothrojaracin forms a noncovalent complex with alpha-thrombin, without changing its catalytic activity on small peptide substrates. Bothrojaracin behaves as a potent and specific antagonist of thrombin-induced platelet aggregation and secretion, characterized by an IC50 ranging from 1 to 20 nM depending on the alpha-thrombin concentration. Bothrojaracin prolongs fibrinogen clotting time, and this effect is related to a competitive inhibition of the binding of alpha-thrombin to fibrin(ogen) (Ki 15 nM). Binding of alpha-thrombin to thrombomodulin is inhibited up to 87% by bothrojaracin, and the rate of protein C activation by alpha-thrombin is also decreased. Bothrojaracin antagonizes the inhibition of thrombin amidolytic activity by hirudin. These results indicate that bothrojaracin acts as a very potent ligand of the exosite of alpha-thrombin.Biochemistry 11/1993; 32(40):10794-802. · 3.38 Impact Factor