Eli Berg

Universitetet i Tromsø, Tromsø, Troms, Norway

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Publications (13)42.41 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Dysregulation of apoptotic cell death is observed in a large number of pathological conditions. As caspases are central enzymes in the regulation of apoptosis, a large number of procaspase-activating compounds (PAC-1 derivatives) and inhibitors (isatin derivatives) have been developed. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) have been shown to have a dual role in apoptosis. Hence compounds that either activate or inhibit caspases should ideally not affect MMPs. As many PAC-1 derivatives contain a zinc chelating ortho-hydroxy N-acyl hydrazone moiety and isatin derivatives has two carbonyl groups on the indole core, it was of interest to determine to which extent these compounds can inhibit MMPs.
    Biochimica et biophysica acta. 07/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Previously we have shown that a fraction of the matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) synthesized by the macrophage cell line THP-1 was bound to a chondroitin sulphate proteoglycan (CSPG) core protein as a reduction sensitive heteromer. It was also shown that the hemopexin-like (PEX) domain and the fibronectin-like (FnII) module in the enzyme are involved in the heteromer formation. In the present work we show that reduction sensitive and SDS-stable heteromers can be reconstituted in vitro by mixing proMMP-9 with either serglycin, versican or CSPGs isolated from various monocytic cell lines. In addition, a strong but SDS-soluble proMMP-9·CSPG heteromer was formed. The two macromolecules in the SDS-stable reduction sensitive heteromers were not linked together by disulphide bonds. As for the heteromer isolated from THP-1 cells, the in vitro reconstituted SDS-stable and SDS-soluble heteromers had a weaker binding to gelatin than the proMMP-9 monomer. Furthermore, gelatin inhibited the in vitro reconstitution of the heteromers, showing that the FnII module is involved in the complex formation. TIMP-1 could not be detected in the formed proMMP-9·CSPG complexes. However, the presence of TIMP-1 inhibited the formation of the SDS-soluble heteromer, but not the SDS-stable reduction sensitive heteromer. This indicates that different regions in the PEX domain are involved the formation of these heteromers. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    FEBS Journal 04/2013; · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Db/db mice are overweight, dyslipidemic and develop diabetic complications, relevant for similar complications in human type 2 diabetes. We have used db/db and db/+ control mice to investigate alterations in proteinase expression and activity in circulation and kidneys by SDS-PAGE zymography, electron microscopy, immunohistochemistry, Western blotting, and in situ zymography. Plasma from db/db mice contained larger amounts of serine proteinases compared to db/+ mice. Kidneys from the db/db mice had a significantly larger glomerular surface area and somewhat thicker glomerular basement membranes compared to the db/+ mice. Furthermore, kidney extracts from db/+ mice contained metalloproteinases with M(r) of approximately 92000, compatible with MMP-9, not observed in db/db mice. These results indicate that higher levels of serine proteinases in plasma may serve as potential markers for kidney changes in db/db mice, whereas a decrease in MMP-9 in the kidney may be related to the glomerular changes.
    ISRN endocrinology. 01/2011; 2011:832642.
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    ABSTRACT: Previously we have shown that a fraction of the matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) synthesized by the macrophage cell line THP-1 was bound to a chondroitin sulphate proteoglycan (CSPG) core protein as a reduction sensitive heteromer. Several biochemical properties of the enzyme were changed when it was bound to the CSPG. By use of affinity chromatography, zymography, and radioactive labelling, various macrophage stimulators were tested for their effect on the synthesis of the proMMP-9/CSPG heteromer and its components by THP-1 cells. Of the stimulators, only PMA largely increased the biosynthesis of the heteromer. As PMA is an activator of PKC, we determined which PKC isoenzymes were expressed by performing RT-PCR and Western Blotting. Subsequently specific inhibitors were used to investigate their involvement in the biosynthesis of the heteromer. Of the inhibitors, only Rottlerin repressed the biosynthesis of proMMP-9/CSPG and its two components. Much lower concentrations of Rottlerin were needed to reduce the amount of CSPG than what was needed to repress the synthesis of the heteromer and MMP-9. Furthermore, Rottlerin caused a minor reduction in the activation of the PKC isoenzymes δ, ε, θ and υ (PKD3) in both control and PMA exposed cells. The biosynthesis of the proMMP-9/CSPG heteromer and proMMP-9 in THP-1 cells involves a Rottlerin-sensitive pathway that is different from the Rottlerin sensitive pathway involved in the CSPG biosynthesis. MMP-9 and CSPGs are known to be involved in various physiological and pathological processes. Formation of complexes may influence both the specificity and localization of the enzyme. Therefore, knowledge about biosynthetic pathways and factors involved in the formation of the MMP-9/CSPG heteromer may contribute to insight in the heteromers biological function as well as pointing to future targets for therapeutic agents.
    PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(6):e20616. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In situ zymography is a method for the detection and localization of enzymatic activity in tissue sections. This method is used with frozen sections because routine fixation of tissue in neutral-buffered formalin inhibits enzyme activity. However, frozen sections present with poor tissue morphology, making precise localization of enzymatic activity difficult to determine. Ethanol- and zinc-buffered fixative (ZBF) are known to preserve both morphological and functional properties of the tissue well, but it has not previously been shown that these fixatives preserve enzyme activity. In the present study, we show that in situ zymography can be performed on ethanol- and ZBF-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue. Compared with snap-frozen tissue, ethanol- and ZBF-fixed tissue showed stronger signals and superior morphology, allowing for a much more precise detection of gelatinolytic activity. Gelatinolytic enzymes could also be extracted from both ethanol- and ZBF-fixed tissue. The yield, as analyzed by SDS-PAGE gelatin zymography and Western blotting, was influenced by the composition of the extraction buffer, but was generally lower than that obtained from unfixed tissue.
    Journal of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry 09/2009; 58(1):29-39. · 2.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Previously we have shown that THP-1 cells synthesize matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) where a fraction of the enzyme is strongly linked to a proteoglycan (PG) core protein. In the present work we show that these pro-MMP-9.PG heteromers have different biochemical properties compared with the monomeric form of pro-MMP-9. In these heteromers, the fibronectin II-like domain in the catalytic site of the enzyme is hidden, and the fibronectin II-like-mediated binding to gelatin and collagen is prevented. However, a fraction of the pro-MMP-9.PG heteromers interacted with gelatin and collagen. This interaction was not through the chondroitin sulfate (CS) part of the PG molecule but, rather, through a region in the PG core protein, a new site induced by the interaction of pro-MMP-9 and the PG core protein, or a non-CS glycosaminoglycan part of the PG molecule. The interaction between pro-MMP-9.PG heteromers and gelatin was weaker than the interaction between pro-MMP-9 and gelatin. In contrast, collagen I bound to pro-MMP-9.PG heteromers and pro-MMP-9 with approximately the same affinity. Removal of CS chains from the PG part of the heteromers did not affect the binding to gelatin and collagen. Although the identity of the PG core protein is not known, this does not have any impact on the described biochemical properties of the heteromer or its pro-MMP-9 component. It is also shown that a small fraction of the PG, which is not a part of the pro-MMP-9.PG heteromer, can bind gelatin. As for the pro-MMP-9.PG heteromers, this was independent of the CS chains. The structure that mediates the binding of free PG to gelatin is different from the corresponding structure in the pro-MMP-9.PG heteromer, because they were eluted from gelatin-Sepharose columns under totally different conditions. Although only a small amount of pro-MMP-9.PG heteromer is formed, the heteromer may have fundamental physiological importance, because only catalytic amounts of the enzyme are required to digest physiological targets.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2008; 283(20):13652-65. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: With general practice recognized as one of three major subjects in the Tromsø medical school curriculum, a matching examination counterpart was needed. The aim was to develop and implement an examination in an authentic general practice setting for final-year medical students. In a general practice surgery, observed by two examiners and one fellow student, the student performs a consultation with a consenting patient who would otherwise have consulted his/her general practitioner (GP). An oral examination follows. It deals with the consultation process, the observed communication between "doctor" and patient, and with clinical problem-solving, taking today's patient as a starting point. The session is closed by discussion of a public-health-related question. Since 2004 the model has been evaluated through questionnaires to students, examiners, and patients, and through a series of review meetings among examiners and students. Examination in general practice using unselected, consenting patients mimics real life to a high degree. It constitutes one important element in a comprehensive assessment process. This is considered to be an acceptable and appropriate way of testing the students before graduation.
    Scandinavian Journal of Primary Health Care 01/2008; 25(4):198-201. · 1.91 Impact Factor
  • Tidsskrift for den Norske laegeforening 09/2005; 125(16):2221-3.
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    ABSTRACT: In contrast to the prevalent view in the literature hitherto, the present study shows that pancreatic trypsin can activate human promatrix metalloproteinase-2 (proMMP-2). It is shown that trypsin's ability to activate proMMP-2 is dependent on various environmental factors such as the level of exogenously added Ca(2+) and Brij-35, temperature, as well as trypsin concentration. The activation occurred as a sequential processing of the proenzyme, initially generating an active 62kDa species. This was followed by successive truncation of the C-terminal domain, giving rise to active species of 56kDa, 52kDa and 50kDa. Tissue inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinases-2 (TIMP-2) prevented the trypsin-mediated C-terminal truncation, without affecting the generation of the 62kDa species, while the presence of EDTA increased the rate of the trypsin-mediated activation of proMMP-2. MALDI-TOF MS analysis of the 50kDa form indicated that trypsin generated active forms with either Lys87 or Trp90 as the N-terminal residue and Arg538 as a C-terminal residue. The trypsin-activated MMP-2 was active in solution against both synthetic and physiologic substrates, and the steady-state kinetic coefficients k(cat), K(m) and k(cat)/K(m) were determined for the enzyme activated either by APMA, membrane-type 1 matrix metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP) or trypsin. The trypsin-activated MMP-2 exhibited slightly lower k(cat) and k(cat)/K(m) values as well as a slightly higher K(i) value against TIMP-1 compared to the enzyme activated by APMA or MT1-MMP. Docking studies of TIMP-1 revealed that the slightly weaker binding of the inhibitor to the trypsin-activated MMP-2 could be attributed to its shorter N terminus (Lys87/Trp90 versus Tyr81), as Phe83 and Arg86 interacted directly with the inhibitor. Our results suggest that the trypsin-activated MMP-2 possesses the catalytic and regulatory potential to be of significance in vivo.
    Journal of Molecular Biology 08/2005; 350(4):682-98. · 3.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In the leukemic macrophage cell-line THP-1, a fraction of the secreted matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9) is linked to the core protein of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPG). Unlike the monomeric and homodimeric forms of MMP-9, the addition of exogenous CaCl2 to the proMMP-9/CSPG complex resulted in an active gelatinase due to the induction of an autocatalytic removal of the N-terminal prodomain. In addition, the MMP-9 was released from the CSPG through a process that appeared to be a stepwise truncation of both the CSPG core protein and a part of the C-terminal domain of the gelatinase. The calcium-induced activation and truncation of the MMP-9/CSPG complex was independent of the concentration of the complex, inhibited by the MMP inhibitors EDTA, 1,10-phenanthroline and TIMP-1, but not by general inhibitors of serine, thiol and acid proteinases. This indicated that the activation and truncation process was not due to a bimolecular reaction, but more likely an intramolecular reaction. The negatively charged chondroitin sulfate chains in the proteoglycan were not involved in this process. Other metal-containing compounds like amino-phenylmercuric acetate (APMA), NaCl, ZnCl2 and MgCl2 were not able to induce activation and truncation of the proMMP-9 in this heterodimer. On the contrary, APMA inhibited the calcium-induced process, whereas high concentrations of either MgCl2 or NaCl had no effect. Our results indicate that the interaction between the MMP-9 and the core protein of the CSPG was the causal factor in the calcium-induced activation and truncation of the gelatinase, and that this process was not due to a general electrostatic effect.
    European Journal of Biochemistry 11/2003; 270(19):3996-4007. · 3.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) secreted from the leukemic macrophage cell-line THP-1 have been investigated. Under serum-free conditions, this cell-line synthesizes and secretes proMMP-9, which was detected in the culture medium as a monomer of 92 kDa, and in dimeric forms, including a homodimer of approximately 225 kDa. In addition, a new heterodimer complex is described, in which proMMP-9 is covalently linked to the core protein of chondroitin sulphate proteoglycan (CSPG) through one or more disulphide bridges. After SDS-PAGE electrophoresis, at least two forms of this complex were detected, a large form in the stacking gel and a smaller form with an estimated size of 300 kDa. When the CS chains were removed by chondroitin ABC lyase treatment, heterodimers of proMMP-9/CSPG core protein of approximately 145, 127 and 109 kDa were found, based on zymography and Western blots. Since as much as 10-15 % of the total proMMP-9 secreted from THP-1 cells was covalently linked to CSPG, this association may have important implications for transport, targetting and regulation of the enzyme activity.
    Journal of Molecular Biology 01/2001; 304(4):669-80. · 3.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In order to study the subcellular localization and organization of the enzymes involved in the glycosylation of the hybrid proteoglycan serglycin, mouse mastocytoma cells were metabolically labeled with [35S]sulfate or [3H]glucosamine in the absence or presence of brefeldin A. This drug is known to induce a disassembly of the proximal part of the Golgi complex, resulting in a redistribution of cis-, medial-, and trans-Golgi resident enzymes back to the endoplasmic reticulum, and to block the anterograde transport of proteins to the trans-Golgi network. Although the total incorporation of [3H]glucosamine into glycosaminoglycan chains was reduced to about 25% in brefeldin A-treated cells compared to control cells, both control cells and cells treated with brefeldin A synthesized heparin as well as chondroitin sulfate chains. Therefore, enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of both types of glycosaminoglycan chains seem to be present proximal to the trans-Golgi network in these cells. Chondroitin sulfate and heparin synthesized in cells exposed to brefeldin A were undersulfated, as demonstrated by ion-exchange chromatography, compositional analyses of disaccharides, as well as by a lower [35S]sulfate/[3H]glucosamine ratio compared to controls. In heparin biosynthesis, both N- and O-sulfation reactions were impaired, with a larger relative decrease in 2-O-sulfation than in 6-O-sulfation. Despite undersulfation, the heparin chains synthesized in the presence of brefeldin A were larger (30 kDa) than the heparin synthesized by control cells (20 kDa). The reduced [3H]glucosamine incorporation in brefeldin A-treated cells was partly due to decreased number of glycosaminoglycan chains synthesized, but also to the biosynthesis of chondroitin sulfate chains of smaller molecular size (8 versus 15 kDa in control cells). Brefeldin A had no effect on the glycosaminoglycan synthesis when used in a cell-free, microsomal fraction, indicating that brefeldin A does not interfere directly with the enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of glycosaminoglycans.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 03/1997; 272(6):3200-6. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To study proteoglycan metabolism in inflammatory macrophages, primary cultures of human macrophages were cultured in the absence and presence of bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS). When exposed to [35S]sulfate, the cells incorporated the label almost exclusively into chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan (CSPG), which was recovered from the culture medium and the cell layer. Cells stimulated with LPS secreted approximately three times more [35]CSPG into the culture medium than control cells. Furthermore, cell adhesion was also found to promote proteoglycan secretion; when nonadherent monocytic cells were induced to adhere, the release of proteoglycan increased two times. The increased secretion seen in LPS-stimulated macrophages was partly due to increased biosynthesis, but was mostly due to increased sorting of CSPG to the secretory pathway. Only about 20% of the CSPG synthesized in unstimulated cells was secreted, whereas the corresponding figure in LPS-treated cells was 35%. In both cell types, the remaining [35S]CSPG was degraded, probably in the lysosomes. The degradation was a two-step process. First, the [35S]CSPG was rapidly cleaved to yield free glycosaminoglycan (GAG) chains (t1/2 = 15 to 30 minutes). Secondly, the GAG chains were completely depolymerized (t1/2 = 2 to 3 hours). Neither resting nor LPS-stimulated cells sorted CSPG to intracellular storage, as is evident in many hematopoietic cells. The LPS-treated cells synthesized [35S]CSPG of smaller molecular size than did control cells, with GAG chains of approximate molecular mass of 12 kD versus 16 kD in control cells. No difference was seen in the disaccharide composition of the GAG chains; both LPS-stimulated and unstimulated cells expressed a mixture of 80% to 90% chondroitin 4-sulfate and 10% to 20% chondroitin 4,6-disulfate. N-terminal sequence and Northern blot analysis indicate that the core protein of the CSPG secreted by human macrophages is serglycin.
    Blood 12/1993; 82(9):2880-9. · 9.78 Impact Factor