Barbara Zabłocka

Mossakowski Medical Research Centre Polish Academy of Sciences, Ochotnica, Lesser Poland Voivodeship, Poland

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Publications (36)87.07 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Mitofusin 2 (Mfn2), a protein of the mitochondrial outer membrane, is essential for mitochondrial fusion and contributes to the maintenance and operation of the mitochondrial network. Mutations in the mitofusin 2 gene cause axonal Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 2A (CMT2A), an inherited disease affecting peripheral nerve axons. The precise mechanism by which mutations in MFN2 selectively cause the degeneration of long peripheral axons is not known. There is a hypothesis suggesting the involvement of reduced expression of a homologous protein, mitofusin 1 (Mfn1), in the peripheral nervous system, and less effective compensation of defective mitofusin 2 by mitofusin 1. We therefore aimed to perform an analysis of the mitofusin 1 and mitofusin 2 mRNA and protein expression profiles in different mouse tissues, with special attention paid to dorsal root ganglia (DRGs), as parts of the peripheral nervous system. Quantitative measurement relating to mRNA revealed that expression of the Mfn2 gene dominates over Mfn1 mainly in mouse DRG, as opposed to other nervous system samples and other tissues studied. This result was further supported by Western blot evaluation. Both these sets of data confirm the hypothesis that the cellular consequences of mutations in the mitofusin 2 gene can mostly be manifested in the peripheral nervous system.
    Folia Neuropathologica 01/2014; 52(4):436-442. DOI:10.5114/fn.2014.47845 · 1.67 Impact Factor
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    Frontiers in Endocrinology 11/2012; 3:131. DOI:10.3389/fendo.2012.00131
  • Pharmacological reports: PR 09/2011; 63(5):1291. DOI:10.1016/S1734-1140(11)70681-8 · 2.17 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: PKC is implicated in the regulation of mitochondrial metabolism. We examined the association of PKCβ with mitochondria and followed postischemic changes in its amount in mitochondria isolated from ischemia-vulnerable (CA1) and ischemia-resistant (CA2-4,DG) hippocampus in gerbil model of transient brain ischemia. Our observations suggest that transient ischemic episode induces a significant, rapid and long lasting increase of PKCβ in mitochondria in CA2-4,DG, which may bespeak neuroprotection. In organotypic hippocampal culture (OHC) model of neurodegeneration, PKCβ inhibition imposed over NMDA toxicity extended the death area beyond the CA1. These results suggest that PKCβ might have a protective effect against excitotoxic damage in rat OHC. The pull-down method and LC-MS/MS analysis revealed mitochondrial proteins that can bind directly with PKCβΙ. The proteins were parts of i) mitochondrial redox carriers forming the electron transport chain including ATP synthase and ii) MPTP: ANT and creatine kinase. PKCβ acting through mitochondrial proteins could play a role in protecting the cells from death by e.g. influencing ROS and ATP production after ischemia in CA2-4,DG region of the hippocampus.
    Mitochondrion 06/2011; 12(1):138-43. DOI:10.1016/j.mito.2011.06.002 · 3.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Some of the metabolic disorders are manifested by a predominantly expressed symptoms from the single organ, however, they display discrete symptoms from other tissues. Charcot Marie Tooth disease (CMT) divided into demyelinating (CMT1) and axonal (CMT2) subtypes is characterized by a slowly progressive wasting of distal muscles. CMT2A form diagnosis requires identification of mutation in a gene coding for mitofusin 2 (MFN2). Mitofusin 2 is a protein of an outer mitochondrial membrane encoded in the nuclear genome and characterized by numerous biochemical functions. Mfn2 is involved mainly in the fusion of mitochondria and the cooperation between endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria. It seems probably that Mfn2 possesses also some regulatory functions and takes part in a regulation of respiratory chain activity, transcription of several proteins and in intracellular signals transduction. Mfn2-linked pathology is also observed in diabetes and heart diseases. Here, we aim to show that mitofusin 2 is a protein crucial not only for peripheral nerve disorders but is a one of the common regulator of cell metabolism.
    Postepy biochemii 01/2011; 57(2):215-21.
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    ABSTRACT: Transient cerebral ischemia is known to induce endogenous mechanisms that can prevent or delay neuronal injury, such as the activation of mitochondrial potassium channels. However, the molecular mechanism of this effect remains unclear. In this study, the single-channel activity was measured using the patch-clamp technique of the mitoplasts isolated from gerbil hippocampus. In 70% of all patches, a potassium-selective current with the properties of a voltage-gated Kv-type potassium channel was recorded with mean conductance 109+/-6pS in a symmetrical solution. The channel was blocked at negative voltages and irreversibly by margatoxin, a specific Kv1.3 channel inhibitor. The ATP/Mg(2+) complex and Ca(2+) ions had no effect on channel activity. Additionally, agitoxin-2, a potent inhibitor of voltage-gated potassium channels, had no effect on mitochondrial channel activity. This observation suggests that in contrast to surface membrane channels, the mitochondrial voltage-gated potassium channel could have a different molecular structure with no affinity to agitoxin-2. Western blots of gerbil hippocampal mitochondria and immunohistochemistry on gerbil brain sections confirmed the expression of the Kv1.3 protein in mitochondria. Our findings indicate that gerbil brain mitochondria contain a voltage-gated potassium channel that can influence the function of mitochondria in physiological and pathological conditions and that has properties similar to the surface membrane Kv1.3 channel.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 07/2010; 397(3):614-20. DOI:10.1016/j.bbrc.2010.06.011 · 2.28 Impact Factor
  • Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - Bioenergetics 07/2010; 1797:133-133. DOI:10.1016/j.bbabio.2010.04.396 · 4.83 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mitochondrial potassium channels play an important role in cytoprotection. Potassium channels in the inner mitochondrial membrane are modulated by inhibitors and activators (potassium channel openers) previously described for plasma membrane potassium channels. The majority of mitochondrial potassium channel modulators exhibit a broad spectrum of off-target effects. These include uncoupling properties, inhibition of the respiratory chain and effects on cellular calcium homeostasis. Therefore, the rational application of channel inhibitors or activators is crucial to understanding the cellular consequences of mitochondrial channel inhibition or activation. Moreover, understanding their side-effects should facilitate the design of a specific mitochondrial channel opener with cytoprotective properties. In this review, we discuss the complex interactions of potassium channel inhibitors and activators with cellular structures.
    FEBS letters 02/2010; 584(10):2063-9. DOI:10.1016/j.febslet.2010.02.048 · 3.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) is a multifunctional peptide of which numerous isoforms exist. The predominant form, IGF-1Ea is involved in physiological processes while IGF-1Ec (mechano-growth factor, MGF) is expressed in response to a different set of stimuli. We have identified specific changes in the expression patterns of these IGF-1 variants in brain development in normal rats and following neonatal hypoxia-ischaemia (HI). Both IGF-1Ea and IGF-1Ec are expressed during normal postnatal brain development, albeit with highly specific temporal distributions. In contrast, HI produced increased and prolonged expression of the IGF-1Ec isoform only. Importantly, hypoxia alone stimulated the expression of IGF-1Ec as well. Thus, IGF-1Ec may play a role in HI pathology. Neonatal hypoxia-ischaemia occurs in approximately 1:4000-1:10,000 newborns and causes neurological deficits in approximately 75% of those affected. Unfortunately, no specific treatment is available. IGF-1 is known to have neuroprotective activity and its IGF-1Ec variant appears to be an endogenous protective factor in hypoxia-ischaemia. Therefore, IGF-1Ec could potentially be developed into a therapeutic modality for the attenuation or prevention of neuronal damage in this and related disorders.
    International journal of developmental neuroscience: the official journal of the International Society for Developmental Neuroscience 09/2009; 28(1):91-7. DOI:10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2009.09.002 · 2.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recent findings support the idea that mitochondrial integrity plays an important role in the propagation of excitotoxic ischemic signal and PKC is implicated in the regulation of mitochondrial membranes properties. One of the targets of PKC delta is phospholipid scramblase 3 (PLSCR3), an enzyme responsible for cardiolipin translocation from the inner to outer mitochondrial membrane. To get an insight into in vivo mechanism by which PKC delta mediates ischemia/reperfusion injury of hippocampal neurons, we examined the effects of transient brain ischemia in gerbil on association of PKC delta with mitochondria isolated from ischemia-vulnerable (CA1) and ischemia-resistant regions, and interactions between PKC delta and PLSCR3. Postischemic, biphasic and brain region-specific translocation of PKC delta to mitochondria was observed. First peak was at 30-60 min of reperfusion and the second was observed after 72-96 h following ischemia. PKC delta was translocated to mitochondria only in CA1 region. The PLSCR3 mRNA and protein was detected in brain by RT-PCR and sequence analysis, Western blotting and immunocytochemistry in electron microscopy (EM). Co-immunoprecipitation and double-labeled immuno-EM showed association of PKC delta and PLSCR3 in postischemic CA1 mitochondria. Additionally, the amount of tBid associated with mitochondria was elevated 96 h following ischemia. Our data suggest that in the postischemic brain PKC delta co-localizes with PLSCR3 in mitochondria and this event might influence the mitochondrial membranes architecture and delayed neurons degeneration.
    Neurochemistry International 01/2009; 55(1-3):157-63. DOI:10.1016/j.neuint.2009.01.009 · 2.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the present investigation was to analyze the molecular mechanism(s) of diazepam neuroprotection in two models of selective neuronal death in CA1 sector of hippocampus: in vivo following transient gerbil brain ischemia and in vitro in rat hippocampal brain slices subjected to glutamatergic (100 microM NMDA) or oxidative (30 microM tertbutyl-hydroksyperoxide (TBH)) stress. In the in vivo model the diazepam treatment (two doses of 10mg/kg i.p. 30 and 90 min after the insult) resulted in more than 60% of CA1 hippocampal neurons surviving the insult comparing with 15% in untreated animals. To test whether the protective effect of diazepam was due to the postulated drug-induced hypothermia we followed the fluxes of body temperature during postischemic reperfusion: diazepam reduced temperature from 36.6+/-1 degrees C to 33.4+/-2 degrees C. Equivalent hypothermia induced and maintained in animals after ischemia did not prevent neuronal cell loss to the same extent as diazepam did (42.8+/-9.2% and 72.4+/-14.5% of live neurons, respectively). In vitro, under constant temperature conditions, diazepam exerted neuroprotective effects following a "U-shaped" dose-response curve, with concentration efficacy window of 0.5-10 microM. Five micro-molar diazepam showed significant protection by reducing over 50% the number of (dead) propidium iodide labeled cells even in the presence of GABA(A) receptor antagonist bicuculline. Next, we have shown that diazepam reduced the efflux of cytochrome c out of mitochondria both in compromised CA1 neurons in vitro and in isolated mitochondria treated with 30 microM THB. Our results suggest that the neuroprotective action of diazepam relies on additional mechanism(s) and not solely on its hypothermic effect. We suggest that diazepam evokes neuroprotection through its central receptors located on the GABA(A) receptor complex and, possibly, through its peripheral receptor, the translocator protein TSPO (previously called the peripheral benzodiazepine receptor) located in the outer mitochondrial membrane.
    Neurochemistry International 01/2009; 55(1-3):164-73. DOI:10.1016/j.neuint.2009.01.024 · 2.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Regulators of mitogen activated protein kinases (MAPK) and c-Jun N-terminal/stress-activated kinase (JNK) include Rho-like small GTP-binding proteins and their regulators. SynGAP and kalirin-7 are postsynaptic density-enriched proteins identified through their interaction with Rho GTPases and PSD-95 scaffold protein. We examined immunoreactivity of SynGAP, kalirin-7, and PSD-95, phosphorylation of MAPK and JNK in control and postischemic hippocampus in gerbil model of transient forebrain ischemia. In normal brain higher amount of kalirin-7 but a lower amount of P-JNK was found in ischemia-resistant hippocampal area: CA2-3, DG than in ischemia-vulnerable CA1. After 5 min ischemia and 1 h reperfusion a decrease of P-ERK and increase of P-JNK were uniformly observed in the hippocampal parts. By contrast, the amount of kalirin-7 in CA2-3, DG reached 56% (P < 0.001) of control while was doubled in CA1. Oppositely, the immunoreactivity of SynGAP was increased in CA2-3, DG and reduced in CA1. Our data indicate that SynGAP and kalirin-7 take part in the regulation of ischemic signal transduction but the mechanism does not seem directly connected with the activation of MAPK and JNK.
    Neurochemical Research 03/2008; 33(9):1789-94. DOI:10.1007/s11064-008-9631-y · 2.55 Impact Factor
  • Joanna Ewa Kowalczyk, Barbara Zabłocka
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    ABSTRACT: Mitochondria, besides playing a central role in energy metabolism within the cell, are involved in a cohort of other processes like cellular differentiation and apoptosis. Investigations during recent few years have shown that protein kinases, including PKA, PKB/Akt, PKC, Raf-1, p38 MAPK, JNK, ERK1/2, Src, Fyn and Csk, may directly interact with mitochondrial proteins. Their role mainly concentrates at phosphorylation of pro- and anti-apoptotic proteins (Bad, Bax, Bcl-2, Bcl-xL), phosphorylation/modification of electron transport chain proteins (complex I, COIV), MPTP forming proteins VDAC and ANT, proteins of mitochondrial ATP-sensitive potassium channel (mitoK(ATP)) and phospholipid scramblase 3 (PLSCR3). Many experimental data showed the presence of protein kinases in the outer and inner mitochondrial membranes as well as in the mitochondrial matrix during in vitro cell stimulations, in neurodegenerative diseases and in in vivo ischaemia heart preconditioning. These data show that translocation of protein kinases to mitochondria plays an important role especially during ischaemia/reperfusion in brain and heart.
    Postepy biochemii 02/2008; 54(2):209-16.
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    ABSTRACT: Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-1) is a peptide synthesized in response to growth hormone stimulation. While most of the circulating IGF-1 comes from the liver, it can also be produced in other tissues and both its expression and processing undergo tissue-specific regulation. The predominant form, IGF-1Ea is a circulating factor while two others, IGF-1Eb and IGF-1Ec (MGF), are mostly expressed in different tissues or in response to various stimuli and show some preferences with respect to the signal transduction pathways they activate. In skeletal muscle specific forms of IGF-1 play a role in development and growth and in addition to these physiological roles IGF-1 functions in the damaged muscle. IGF-1 is also important for the developing and adult brain and can reduce neuronal death caused by different types of injuries. Like many other peptide hormones IGF-1 originates from a precursor pro-hormone that undergoes extensive post-translational modifications. Processing liberates the mature peptide, which acts via the specific IGF-1 receptor but additional short peptides can arise from both N- and C-termini of various IGF-1 isoforms. These derivatives function as autonomous biologically active peptides and extremely potent neuroprotective agents. Their biological effects are independent of the activation of the IGF-1 receptor. Unfortunately, little is known about their mechanism(s) of action. Likewise, the existence of the endogenous production and wider biological effects of these short peptides are uncertain. However, considering the difference in the modes of action it might be possible to dissociate the unwanted and potentially dangerous mitogenic activity of the full-length IGF-1 exerted via its receptor from the neuroprotective effects of short derivatives mediated through different pathways. Such small molecules show good penetration through the blood brain barrier, can be inexpensively manufactured and modified to increase their stability. Therefore, they are good candidates for development into a neuroprotective therapeutic modality.
    Neurochemistry International 01/2008; 51(8):451-8. DOI:10.1016/j.neuint.2007.04.030 · 2.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Previously we have shown that the biphasic efflux of mitochondrial protein cytochrome c to cytoplasm is one of the important events of the delayed postichemic neuronal death. We concluded that early and transient appearance of cytochrome c in cytoplasm of cells recovering after ischemia was decisive for initiation of the pathological signaling cascade leading to neuronal death, but the precise mechanism remained unknown. In vitro cytochrome c was identified as a messenger that coordinates mitochondrial-endoplasmatic reticulum interactions that drive apoptosis. Here we show that in vivo cytochrome c interacts with inositol (1,4,5) trisphosphate receptor type 1 in gerbil hippocampus subjected to transient brain ischemia and short reperfusion. Moreover, cytochrome c binds also to ryanodine receptor type 2, the role of which in postischemic neuronal death is suggested. The complexes could be coimmunoprecipitated by antibodies against any of the two proteins. Our data verified that the mechanism observed in vitro applies to the pathological in vivo situation.
    Neurochemistry International 05/2006; 48(6-7):568-71. DOI:10.1016/j.neuint.2005.11.020 · 2.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The ischemic stroke is the third leading cause of death in developed countries. The C-terminal peptide of mechano-growth factor (MGF), an alternatively spliced variant of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), was found to function independently from the rest of the molecule and showed a neuroprotective effect in vivo and in vitro. In vivo, in a gerbil model of transient brain ischemia, treatment with the synthetic MGF C-terminal peptide provided very significant protection to the vulnerable neurons. In the same model, ischemia evoked increased expression of endogenous MGF in the ischemia-resistant hippocampal neurons, suggesting that the endogenous MGF might have an important neuroprotective function. In an in vitro organotypic hippocampal culture model of neurodegeneration, the synthetic peptide was as potent as the full-length IGF-1 while its effect lasted significantly longer than that of recombinant IGF-1. While two peptides showed an additive effect, the neuroprotective action of the C-terminal MGF was independent from the IGF-1 receptor, indicating a new mode of action for this molecule. Although MGF is known for its regenerative capability in skeletal muscle, our findings demonstrate for the first time a neuroprotective role against ischemia for this specific IGF-1 isoform. Therefore, the C-terminal MGF peptide has a potential to be developed into a therapeutic modality for the prevention of neuronal damage.
    The FASEB Journal 12/2005; 19(13):1896-8. DOI:10.1096/fj.05-3786fje · 5.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A previous study showed that treatment of C6 glioma cells with 10 mM ammonium chloride monia") for 24 h decreases taurine uptake and evokes sodium-dependent taurine efflux, indicating reversal of the taurine transporter (TauT)-mediated transport as an underlying mechanism. Consistent with the involvement of TauT we now show that the ammonia-induced changes in Tau uptake and efflux are inhibited by the protein kinase C (PKC) activator phorbol 12,13-dibutyrate (PDBu). Ammonia treatment of C6 cells resulted in increased intracellular accumulation of cAMP. Incubation of the cells with dibutyryl cAMP (dbcAMP) mimicked the effects of ammonia on both taurine uptake and efflux. The effects of dbcAMP on taurine uptake and efflux were additive to the effects of ammonia. Collectively, the results suggest that the effects of ammonia on taurine uptake and efflux may be partly mediated by cAMP. Consistent with this mechanism, the adenyl cyclase inhibitor, miconazole reduced the stimulation of efflux by ammonia.
    Neurochemical Research 04/2005; 30(3):349-54. DOI:10.1007/s11064-005-2608-1 · 2.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Delayed ischemic brain damage is associated with mitochondrial dysfunction, but the underlying mechanisms are not known in detail. Recent data suggest that the process is associated with multidirectional changes in the activities of various proteins located in mitochondria. Of these, the stress-activated kinase JNK is delay-activated postischemia. We induced 5 min cerebral ischemia in gerbils followed by 3, 24, 48, 72 and 96 h of reperfusion. Here we show the postischemic translocation of proapoptotic protein Bad to mitochondria. Immunoelectron microscopic examination revealed the co-appearance of Bad and Bcl-2 proteins in postischemic mitochondria in ischemia-vulnerable CA1 sector of hippocampus as opposed to the ischemia-resistant DG region. Mitochondrial increase of Bad protein is coincident with a transient decrease of the active, phosphorylated form of prosurvival kinase, Raf-1, under conditions of long reperfusion. The above demonstrated sequence of events is likely to play a role in delayed postischemic nerve cell death.
    Molecular Brain Research 03/2005; 133(2):274-80. DOI:10.1016/j.molbrainres.2004.10.013 · 2.00 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The efflux of mitochondrial protein cytochrome C to cytoplasm is one of the key events of mitochondrial dysfunction observed in post-ischemic pathology. We investigated the effect of intra-carotid infusion of 5-10 mg/kg of cyclosporin A (CsA) on the neuronal survival in CA1 sector of hippocampus and on the subcellular localization of cytochrome C in the model of 5 min gerbil brain ischemia. To discriminate between the immunosuppressive and the mitochondria protecting component of CsA action, we compared the effect of CsA with one other immunosuppressant FK506. Almost 75% of neurons in ischemia-affected brain area were saved after CsA but not after FK506 treatment. This protective effect was only observed when the drug was infused immediately upon reperfusion. Early CsA treatment was able to block an initial phase of cytochrome C release, occurring transiently at 30 min post-ischemia, an effect never observed after FK506 administration. We assessed the neuroprotective potency of CsA vs. FK506 in rat cortical primary culture treated with compounds that mimic destructive signals induced by brain ischemia. In all cases, neuronal death and cytochrome C release were evidently suppressed by CsA applied not later than 30 min after the initial insult. Thus, early treatment with CsA in vitro and after bolus intra-carotid injection in vivo can save neurons by inhibition of cytochrome C efflux to cytoplasm.
    Molecular Brain Research 03/2004; 121(1-2):50-9. DOI:10.1016/j.molbrainres.2003.11.006 · 2.00 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The relative roles of the three sodium-dependent transport systems: A, ASC and N in the uptake of [3H]Gln, and the compatibility of the uptake characteristics with the expression of mRNAs coding for the Gln transporting molecules, were examined in primary cultures of astrocytes and neurons derived from mouse cerebellum, a glutaminergic system-enriched structure, and in cerebral cortex. Gln uptake activity (Vmax) was higher in cerebellar astrocytes or neurons than in their cerebral cortical counterparts. The N-methylamino-isobutyric acid (MeAiB)- and pH-sensitive, system A-mediated component of the uptake, and the uptake of [14C]MeAiB itself, was much more active in neurons than in astrocytes derived from either region. Also, the expression of mRNA for GlnT (SAT1), a system A isoform specific for Gln, was only expressed in neurons derived from both structures, while an alanine (Ala)-preferring system A transporter, SAT2, was expressed in neurons and astrocytes from either region. System ASC-mediated Gln uptake and expression of ASCT2 mRNA were in both structures more pronounced in astrocytes than in neurons, consistent with the postulated role of ASCT2 in the efflux of de novo synthesized Gln from astrocytes. System N-mediated (threonine+MeAiB-inhibitable) Gln uptake showed comparable activities in all four types of cells, which is compatible with the ubiquitous expression of NAT2 mRNA-a mouse brain-specific N-system isoform.
    Neurochemistry International 02/2004; 44(2):75-81. DOI:10.1016/S0197-0186(03)00123-2 · 2.65 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

647 Citations
87.07 Total Impact Points


  • 2006–2012
    • Mossakowski Medical Research Centre Polish Academy of Sciences
      Ochotnica, Lesser Poland Voivodeship, Poland
  • 1993–2008
    • Polish Academy of Sciences
      • • Department of Molecular Biology
      • • Laboratory of Molecular Biology
      • • Zakład Neurochemii
      Warszawa, Masovian Voivodeship, Poland