Samuel Lee

Brigham and Women's Hospital , Boston, Massachusetts, United States

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Publications (8)65.3 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is responsible for protein folding, modification, and trafficking. Accumulation of unfolded or misfolded proteins represents the condition of ER stress and triggers the unfolded protein response (UPR), a key mechanism linking supply of excess nutrients to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes in obesity. The ER harbors proteins that participate in protein folding including protein disulfide isomerases (PDIs). Changes in PDI activity are associated with protein misfolding and ER stress. Here, we show that thioredoxin-interacting protein (Txnip), a member of the arrestin protein superfamily and one of the most strongly induced proteins in diabetic patients, regulates PDI activity and UPR signaling. We found that Txnip binds to PDIs and increases their enzymatic activity. Genetic deletion of Txnip in cells and mice led to increased protein ubiquitination and splicing of the UPR regulated transcription factor X-box-binding protein 1 (Xbp1s) at baseline as well as under ER stress. Our results reveal Txnip as a novel direct regulator of PDI activity and a feedback mechanism of UPR signaling to decrease ER stress.
    EMBO Molecular Medicine 05/2014; · 7.80 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Diabetes is caused by the loss or dysfunction of insulin-secreting β-cells in the pancreas. β-cells reduce their mass and lose insulin-producing ability in vitro, likely due to insufficient cell-cell and cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) interactions as β-cells lose their native microenvironment. Herein, we built an ex-vivo cell microenvironment by culturing primary β-cells in direct contact with 'synthetic neighbors', cell-sized soft polymer microbeads that were modified with cell-cell signaling factors as well as components from pancreatic-tissue-specific ECMs. This biomimetic 3D microenvironment was able to promote native cell-cell and cell-ECM interactions. We obtained sustained maintenance of β-cell function in vitro enhanced cell viability from the few days usually observed in 2D culture to periods exceeding three weeks, with enhanced β-cell stability and insulin production. Our approach can be extended to create a general 3D culture platform for other cell types.
    Scientific Reports 01/2013; 3:2863. · 5.08 Impact Factor
  • Samuel Lee, Soo Min Kim, Richard T Lee
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract The thioredoxin (Trx) system is one of the central antioxidant systems in mammalian cells, maintaining a reducing environment by catalyzing electron flux from nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate through Trx reductase to Trx, which reduces its target proteins using highly conserved thiol groups. While the importance of protecting cells from the detrimental effects of reactive oxygen species is clear, decades of research in this field revealed that there is a network of redox-sensitive proteins forming redox-dependent signaling pathways that are crucial for fundamental cellular processes, including metabolism, proliferation, differentiation, migration, and apoptosis. Trx participates in signaling pathways interacting with different proteins to control their dynamic regulation of structure and function. In this review, we focus on Trx target proteins that are involved in redox-dependent signaling pathways. Specifically, Trx-dependent reductive enzymes that participate in classical redox reactions and redox-sensitive signaling molecules are discussed in greater detail. The latter are extensively discussed, as ongoing research unveils more and more details about the complex signaling networks of Trx-sensitive signaling molecules such as apoptosis signal-regulating kinase 1, Trx interacting protein, and phosphatase and tensin homolog, thus highlighting the potential direct and indirect impact of their redox-dependent interaction with Trx. Overall, the findings that are described here illustrate the importance and complexity of Trx-dependent, redox-sensitive signaling in the cell. Our increasing understanding of the components and mechanisms of these signaling pathways could lead to the identification of new potential targets for the treatment of diseases, including cancer and diabetes. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 00, 000-000.
    Antioxidants & Redox Signaling 05/2012; · 8.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Classic therapeutics for ischemic heart disease are less effective in individuals with the metabolic syndrome. As the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome is increasing, better understanding of cardiac metabolism is needed to identify potential new targets for therapeutic intervention. Thioredoxin-interacting protein (Txnip) is a regulator of metabolism and an inhibitor of the antioxidant thioredoxins, but little is known about its roles in the myocardium. We examined hearts from Txnip-KO mice by polony multiplex analysis of gene expression and an independent proteomic approach; both methods indicated suppression of genes and proteins participating in mitochondrial metabolism. Consistently, Txnip-KO mitochondria were functionally and structurally altered, showing reduced oxygen consumption and ultrastructural derangements. Given the central role that mitochondria play during hypoxia, we hypothesized that Txnip deletion would enhance ischemia-reperfusion damage. Surprisingly, Txnip-KO hearts had greater recovery of cardiac function after an ischemia-reperfusion insult. Similarly, cardiomyocyte-specific Txnip deletion reduced infarct size after reversible coronary ligation. Coordinated with reduced mitochondrial function, deletion of Txnip enhanced anaerobic glycolysis. Whereas mitochondrial ATP synthesis was minimally decreased by Txnip deletion, cellular ATP content and lactate formation were higher in Txnip-KO hearts after ischemia-reperfusion injury. Pharmacologic inhibition of glycolytic metabolism completely abolished the protection afforded the heart by Txnip deficiency under hypoxic conditions. Thus, although Txnip deletion suppresses mitochondrial function, protection from myocardial ischemia is enhanced as a result of a coordinated shift to enhanced anaerobic metabolism, which provides an energy source outside of mitochondria.
    The Journal of clinical investigation 12/2011; 122(1):267-79. · 15.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Highlights ► Genetic variation near ARRDC3 in humans links to high BMI in males but not females ► Arrdc3 null mice resist obesity through increased energy expenditure ► Arrdc3 loss induces increased brown fat activity, white fat “browning,” and lipolysis ► Loss of α-arrestin/β-adrenoreceptor interaction increases catecholamine response
    Cell Metabolism. 11/2011; 14(5):671–683.
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    ABSTRACT: A human genome-wide linkage scan for obesity identified a linkage peak on chromosome 5q13-15. Positional cloning revealed an association of a rare haplotype to high body-mass index (BMI) in males but not females. The risk locus contains a single gene, "arrestin domain-containing 3" (ARRDC3), an uncharacterized α-arrestin. Inactivating Arrdc3 in mice led to a striking resistance to obesity, with greater impact on male mice. Mice with decreased ARRDC3 levels were protected from obesity due to increased energy expenditure through increased activity levels and increased thermogenesis of both brown and white adipose tissues. ARRDC3 interacted directly with β-adrenergic receptors, and loss of ARRDC3 increased the response to β-adrenergic stimulation in isolated adipose tissue. These results demonstrate that ARRDC3 is a gender-sensitive regulator of obesity and energy expenditure and reveal a surprising diversity for arrestin family protein functions.
    Cell metabolism 11/2011; 14(5):671-83. · 17.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Therapies selectively targeting ischemic myocardium could be applied by intravenous injection. Here, we report an approach for ischemic tissue-selective targeting based on in vivo screening of random peptide sequences using phage display. We performed in vivo biopanning using a phage library in a rat model of ischemia-reperfusion and identified three peptide motifs, CSTSMLKAC, CKPGTSSYC, and CPDRSVNNC, that exhibited preferential binding to ischemic heart tissue compared to normal heart as well as other control organs. The CSTSMLKAC sequence was capable of mediating selective homing of phage to ischemic heart tissue. The CSTSMLKAC peptide was then made as a fusion protein with Sumo-mCherry and injected intravenously in a mouse model of myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury; subsequently, bio-distribution of Sumo-mCherry-CSTSMLKAC was measured with quantitative ELISA. The targeting peptide led to a significant increase in homing to ischemic left ventricle compared to tissues from non-ischemic left ventricle, the right ventricle, lung, liver, spleen, skeletal muscle, and brain (all p<0.001). These results indicate that the peptide sequence CSTSMLKAC represents a novel molecular tool that may be useful in targeting ischemic tissue and delivering bioengineered proteins into the injured myocardium by systemic intravenous administration.
    Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology 02/2011; 50(5):841-8. · 5.15 Impact Factor
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    Samuel Lee, Richard T Lee
    Arteriosclerosis Thrombosis and Vascular Biology 03/2010; 30(3):459-60. · 6.34 Impact Factor