Marie-Gabrielle Ludwig

Novartis, Bâle, Basel-City, Switzerland

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Publications (16)159.98 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: We discuss recent evidence which suggests that the principal central respiratory chemoreceptors are located within the retrotrapezoid nucleus (RTN) and that RTN neurons are directly sensitive to [H(+) ]. RTN neurons are glutamatergic. In vitro, their activation by [H(+) ] requires expression of a proton-activated GPCR (GPR4) and a proton-modulated potassium channel (TASK-2) whose transcripts are undetectable in astrocytes and the rest of the lower brainstem respiratory network. The pH response of RTN neurons is modulated by surrounding astrocytes but genetic deletion of RTN neurons or deletion of both GPR4 and TASK-2 virtually eliminates the central respiratory chemoreflex. Thus, although this reflex is regulated by innumerable brain pathways, it seems to operate predominantly by modulating the discharge rate of RTN neurons, and the activation of RTN neurons by hypercapnia may ultimately derive from their intrinsic pH sensitivity. RTN neurons increase lung ventilation by stimulating multiple aspects of breathing simultaneously. They stimulate breathing about equally during quiet wake and non-REM sleep and to a lesser degree during REM sleep. The activity of RTN neurons is regulated by inhibitory feedback and by excitatory inputs, notably from the carotid bodies. The latter input operates during normo- or hypercapnia but fails to activate RTN neurons under hypocapnic conditions. RTN inhibition likely limits the degree of hyperventilation produced by hypocapnic hypoxia. RTN neurons are also activated by inputs from serotonergic neurons and hypothalamic neurons. The absence of RTN neurons probably underlies the sleep apnea and lack of chemoreflex that characterize congenital central hypoventilation syndrome. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · The Journal of Physiology
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    ABSTRACT: The pH-sensing receptor OGR1 (Ovarian Cancer G protein-coupled receptor 1, GPR68) is expressed in the gut. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is typically associated with a decrease in local pH, which may lead to altered epithelial barrier function and subsequent gastrointestinal repair involving epithelial cell adhesion and migration. As the mechanisms underlying the response to pH changes are not well understood, we have investigated OGR1-mediated pH-dependent signaling pathways in intestinal epithelial cells. Caco-2 cells stably overexpressing OGR1 were created and validated as tools to study OGR1 signaling. Barrier function, migration and proliferation were measured using ECIS (Electric Cell-Substrate Impedance Sensing) technology. Localization of the tight-junction proteins ZO-1 and occludin, and the rearrangement of cytoskeletal actin were examined by confocal microscopy. Paracellular permeability, protein and gene expression analysis using DNA microarrays were performed on filter-grown Caco-2 monolayers. We report that an acidic pH shift from pH 7.8 to 6.6 improved barrier function and stimulated reorganization of filamentous actin (F-actin) with prominent basal stress fiber formation. Cell migration and proliferation during in vitro wound healing were inhibited. Gene expression analysis revealed significant up-regulation of genes related to cytoskeleton remodeling, cell adhesion, and growth factor signaling. We conclude that acidic extracellular pH can have a signaling function and impact the physiology of intestinal epithelial cells. Deconstructing OGR1-dependent signaling may aid our understanding of mucosal inflammation mechanisms. Copyright © 2014, American Journal of Physiology- Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015 · AJP Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
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    Full-text · Dataset · Jun 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Blood gas and tissue pH regulation depend on the ability of the brain to sense CO2 and/or H(+) and alter breathing appropriately, a homeostatic process called central respiratory chemosensitivity. We show that selective expression of the proton-activated receptor GPR4 in chemosensory neurons of the mouse retrotrapezoid nucleus (RTN) is required for CO2-stimulated breathing. Genetic deletion of GPR4 disrupted acidosis-dependent activation of RTN neurons, increased apnea frequency, and blunted ventilatory responses to CO2. Reintroduction of GPR4 into RTN neurons restored CO2-dependent RTN neuronal activation and rescued the ventilatory phenotype. Additional elimination of TASK-2 (K2P5), a pH-sensitive K(+) channel expressed in RTN neurons, essentially abolished the ventilatory response to CO2. The data identify GPR4 and TASK-2 as distinct, parallel, and essential central mediators of respiratory chemosensitivity. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2015 · Science
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    ABSTRACT: A novel family of proton-sensing G protein-coupled receptors, including OGR1, GPR4, and TDAG8, was identified to be important for physiological pH homeostasis and inflammation. Thus, we determined the function of proton-sensing OGR1 in the intestinal mucosa. OGR1 expression in colonic tissues was investigated in controls and patients with IBD. Expression of OGR1 upon cell activation was studied in the Mono Mac 6 (MM6) cell line and primary human and murine monocytes by real-time PCR. Ogr1 knockout mice were crossbred with Il-10 deficient mice and studied for more than 200 days. Microarray profiling was performed using Ogr1 and Ogr1 (WT) residential peritoneal macrophages. Patients with IBD expressed higher levels of OGR1 in the mucosa than non-IBD controls. Treatment of MM6 cells with TNF, led to significant upregulation of OGR1 expression, which could be reversed by the presence of NF-κB inhibitors. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis showed a significantly delayed onset and progression of rectal prolapse in female Ogr1/Il-10 mice. These mice displayed significantly less rectal prolapses. Upregulation of gene expression, mediated by OGR1, in response to extracellular acidification in mouse macrophages was enriched for inflammation and immune response, actin cytoskeleton, and cell-adhesion gene pathways. OGR1 expression is induced in cells of human macrophage lineage and primary human monocytes by TNF. NF-κB inhibition reverses the induction of OGR1 expression by TNF. OGR1 deficiency protects from spontaneous inflammation in the Il-10 knockout model. Our data indicate a pathophysiological role for pH-sensing receptor OGR1 during the pathogenesis of mucosal inflammation.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · Inflammatory Bowel Diseases
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    ABSTRACT: Oxysterols such as 7 alpha, 25-dihydroxycholesterol (7α,25-OHC) are natural ligands for the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-induced gene 2 (EBI2, aka GPR183), a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) highly expressed in immune cells and required for adaptive immune responses. Activation of EBI2 by specific oxysterols leads to chemotaxis of B cells in lymphoid tissues. While the ligand gradient necessary for this critical process of the adaptive immune response is established by a stromal cells subset here we investigate the involvement of the oxysterol / EBI2 system in the innate immune response. First, we show that primary human macrophages express EBI2 and the enzymes needed for ligand production such as cholesterol 25-hydroxylase (CH25H), sterol 27-hydroxylase (CYP27A1), and oxysterol 7 α -hydroxylase (CYP7B1). Furthermore, challenge of monocyte-derived macrophages with lipopolysaccharides (LPS) triggers a strong up-regulation of CH25H and CYP7B1 in comparison to a transient increase in EBI2 expression. Stimulation of EBI2 expressed on macrophages leads to calcium mobilization and to directed cell migration. Supernatants of LPS-stimulated macrophages are able to stimulate EBI2 signaling indicating that an induction of CH25H, CYP27A1, and CYP7B1 results in an enhanced production and release of oxysterols into the cellular environment. This is a study characterizing the oxysterol / EBI2 pathway in primary monocyte-derived macrophages. Given the crucial functional role of macrophages in the innate immune response these results encourage further exploration of a possible link to systemic autoimmunity.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
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    ABSTRACT: Background: The proton-activated G protein-coupled receptor GPR4 is expressed in many tissues including white adipose tissue. GPR4 is activated by extracellular protons in the physiological pH range (i.e. pH 7.7 - 6.8) and is coupled to the production of cAMP. Methods: We examined mice lacking GPR4 and examined glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity in young and aged mice as well as in mice fed with a high fat diet. Expression profiles of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines in white adipose tissue, liver and skeletal muscle was assessed. Results: Here we show that mice lacking GPR4 have an improved intraperitoneal glucose tolerance test and increased insulin sensitivity. Insulin levels were comparable but leptin levels were increased in GPR4 KO mice. Gpr4(-/-) showed altered expression of PPARα, IL-6, IL-10, TNFα, and TGF-1β in skeletal muscle, white adipose tissue, and liver. High fat diet abolished the differences in glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity between Gpr4(+/+) and Gpr4(-/-) mice. In contrast, in aged mice (12 months old), the positive effect of GPR4 deficiency on glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity was maintained. Liver and adipose tissue showed no major differences in the mRNA expression of pro- and anti-inflammatory factors between aged mice of both genotypes. Conclusion: Thus, GPR4 deficiency improves glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity. The effect may involve an altered balance between pro- and anti-inflammatory factors in insulin target tissues. © 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry

  • No preview · Article · May 2013 · Gastroenterology
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    ABSTRACT: Pulmonary surfactant levels within the alveoli are tightly regulated to maintain lung volumes and promote efficient gas exchange across the air/blood barrier. Both quantitative and qualitative abnormalities in surfactant are associated with severe lung diseases in children and adults. While the cellular and molecular mechanisms that control surfactant metabolism have been studied intensively, the critical molecular pathway(s) that senses and regulates endogenous surfactant levels within the alveolus have not been identified and constitute a fundamental knowledge gap in the field. In this study, we demonstrate that expression of an orphan G protein-coupled receptor, GPR116, in the murine lung is developmentally regulated, reaching maximal levels one day following birth, and is highly expressed on the apical surface of alveolar type I and type II epithelial cells. To define the physiological role of GPR116 in vivo, mice with a targeted mutation of the Gpr116 locus, Gpr116Δexon17, were generated. Gpr116Δexon17 mice developed a profound accumulation of alveolar surfactant phospholipids at 4 weeks of age (12-fold) that is further increased at 20 weeks of age (30-fold). Surfactant accumulation in Gpr116Δexon17 mice was associated with increased SatPC synthesis at 4 weeks and the presence of enlarged, lipid-laden macrophages, neutrophilia and alveolar destruction at 20 weeks. mRNA microarray analyses indicated that P2RY2, a purinergic receptor known to mediate surfactant secretion, was induced in Gpr116Δexon17 type II cells. Collectively, these data support the concept that GPR116 functions as a molecular sensor of alveolar surfactant lipid pool sizes by regulating surfactant secretion.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2013 · American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology

  • No preview · Article · May 2012 · Gastroenterology

  • No preview · Article · May 2012 · Gastroenterology
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    ABSTRACT: The Ovarian cancer G protein-coupled Receptor 1 (OGR1; GPR68) is proton-sensitive in the pH range of 6.8 - 7.8. However, its physiological function is not defined to date. OGR1 signals via inositol trisphosphate and intracellular calcium, albeit downstream events are unclear. To elucidate OGR1 function further, we transfected HEK293 cells with active OGR1 receptor or a mutant lacking 5 histidine residues (H5Phe-OGR1). An acute switch of extracellular pH from 8 to 7.1 (10 nmol/l vs 90 nmol/l protons) stimulated NHE and H(+)-ATPase activity in OGR1-transfected cells, but not in H5Phe-OGR1-transfected cells. ZnCl(2) and CuCl(2) that both inhibit OGR1 reduced the stimulatory effect. The activity was blocked by chelerythrine, whereas the ERK1/2 inhibitor PD 098059 had no inhibitory effect. OGR1 activation increased intracellular calcium in transfected HEK293 cells. We next isolated proximal tubules from kidneys of wild-type and OGR1-deficient mice and measured the effect of extracellular pH on NHE activity in vitro. Deletion of OGR1 affected the pH-dependent proton extrusion, however, in the opposite direction as expected from cell culture experiments. Upregulated expression of the pH-sensitive kinase Pyk2 in OGR1 KO mouse proximal tubule cells may compensate for the loss of OGR1. Thus, we present the first evidence that OGR1 modulates the activity of two major plasma membrane proton transport systems. OGR1 may be involved in the regulation of plasma membrane transport proteins and intra- and/or extracellular pH.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2012 · Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry
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    ABSTRACT: The G protein-coupled receptor GPR4 is activated by acidic pH and recent evidence indicates that it is expressed in endothelial cells. In agreement with these reports, we observe a high correlation of GPR4 mRNA expression with endothelial marker genes, and we confirm expression and acidic pH dependent function of GPR4 in primary human vascular endothelial cells. GPR4-deficient mice were generated; these are viable and fertile and show no gross abnormalities. However, these animals show a significantly reduced angiogenic response to VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor), but not to bFGF (basic fibroblast growth factor), in a growth factor implant model. Accordingly, in two different orthotopic models, tumor growth is strongly reduced in mice lacking GPR4. Histological analysis of tumors indicates reduced tumor cell proliferation as well as altered vessel morphology, length and density. Moreover, GPR4 deficiency results in reduced VEGFR2 (VEGF Receptor 2) levels in endothelial cells, accounting, at least in part, for the observed phenotype. Our data suggest that endothelial cells sense local tissue acidosis via GPR4 and that this signal is required to generate a full angiogenic response to VEGF.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · Angiogenesis
  • Klaus Seuwen · Marie-Gabrielle Ludwig · Romain M Wolf
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    ABSTRACT: The subfamily of G protein-coupled receptors comprising GPR4, OGR1, TDAG8, and G2A was originally characterized as a group of proteins mediating biological responses to the lipid messengers sphingosylphosphorylcholine (SPC), lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC), and psychosine. We challenged this view by reporting that OGR1 and GPR4 sense acidic pH and that this process is not affected by concentrations of SPC or LPC previously reported as agonistic. The original publications describing GPR4, OGR1, and G2A as receptors for LPC or SPC have now been retracted, and the first studies exploring receptors of this family as pH sensors in physiology have appeared. Here we review the status of this field and we confirm that GPR4, OGR1, and TDAG8 should be considered as proton-sensing receptors. Negative regulation of these receptors by high micromolar concentrations of lipids appears not specific in our experiments.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2006 · Journal of Receptor and Signal Transduction Research
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    ABSTRACT: Blood pH is maintained in a narrow range around pH 7.4 mainly through regulation of respiration and renal acid extrusion. The molecular mechanisms involved in pH homeostasis are not completely understood. Here we show that ovarian cancer G-protein-coupled receptor 1 (OGR1), previously described as a receptor for sphingosylphosphorylcholine, acts as a proton-sensing receptor stimulating inositol phosphate formation. The receptor is inactive at pH 7.8, and fully activated at pH 6.8-site-directed mutagenesis shows that histidines at the extracellular surface are involved in pH sensing. We find that GPR4, a close relative of OGR1, also responds to pH changes, but elicits cyclic AMP formation. It is known that the skeleton participates in pH homeostasis as a buffering organ, and that osteoblasts respond to pH changes in the physiological range, but the pH-sensing mechanism operating in these cells was hitherto not known. We detect expression of OGR1 in osteosarcoma cells and primary human osteoblast precursors, and show that these cells exhibit strong pH-dependent inositol phosphate formation. Immunohistochemistry on rat tissue sections confirms the presence of OGR1 in osteoblasts and osteocytes. We propose that OGR1 and GPR4 are proton-sensing receptors involved in pH homeostasis.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2003 · Nature
  • Marie-Gabrielle Ludwig · Klaus Seuwen
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    ABSTRACT: The membrane-bound adenylyl cyclases (ACs) represent one of the major families of effector enzymes for G protein-coupled receptors. Eight human AC isoforms, encoded by separate genes, have been identified up to now. However, in several cases only partial cDNA sequences are available (ADCY1,2,5). A ninth expected isoform, the human ortholog of rat ADCY4, has not been described yet. Using the high inter-species homology of mammalian AC isoforms, we searched the human genome and we succeeded to identify full-length coding sequences for all enzymes. Where required, missing sequence information was provided experimentally. Analysis of genomic sequences from the Celera database also allowed us to determine the exon-intron boundaries for ADCY1-9 and to establish the gene structures. We found that human AC genes comprise 11 to 26 exons, which are distributed over 16 to 430kb. We further report expression profiles for the nine ACs in a panel of 16 human tissues and in human embryonic kidney (HEK) cells.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2002 · Journal of Receptor and Signal Transduction Research

Publication Stats

462 Citations
159.98 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2002-2016
    • Novartis
      Bâle, Basel-City, Switzerland
  • 2011
    • Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research
      • Global Discovery Chemistry Group
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States