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Publications (25)

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background Platelet secretion is critical to development of acute thrombotic occlusion. Platelet dense granules contain a variety of important hemostatically active substances. Nevertheless, biogenesis of platelet granules is poorly understood.ObjectivesSGK1 has been shown to be highly expressed in platelets and megakaryocytes, but its role in the regulation of platelet granule biogenesis and its impact on thrombosis has not been investigated so far.Methods and ResultsElectron microscopy analysis of platelet ultrastructure revealed significant reduction in number and packing of dense granules in platelets lacking SGK1 (sgk1-/-). In sgk1-/- platelets serotonin content was significantly reduced and activation-dependent secretion of ATP, serotonin and CD63 significantly impaired. In vivo adhesion after carotis ligation was significantly decreased in platelets lacking SGK1 and occlusive thrombus formation after FeCl3-induced vascular injury was significantly diminished in sgk1-/- mice. Transcript levels and protein abundance of dense granule biogenesis regulating GTPase Rab27b were significantly reduced in sgk1-/- platelets without affecting Rab27b mRNA stability. In MEG-01 cells transfection with constitutively active S422DSGK1 but not with inactive K127NSGK1 significantly enhanced Rab27b mRNA levels. Sgk1-/- megakaryocytes show significantly reduced expression of Rab27b and serotonin/CD63 levels compared to sgk1+/+ megakaryocytes. Proteome analysis identified 9 further vesicular transport proteins regulated by SGK1 which may have an impact on impaired platelet granules biogenesis in sgk1-/- platelets independent of Rab27b.Conclusions The present observations unravel SGK1 as a novel powerful regulator of platelet dense granule biogenesis, platelet secretion and thrombus formation. SGK1 is at least partially effective by regulating transcription of Rab27b in megakaryocytes.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Article · May 2015 · Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cyclophilin A (CyPA) is secreted under inflammatory conditions by various cell types. Whereas the important role of intracellular CyPA for platelet function has been reported, the effect of extracellular CyPA on platelet function has not been investigated yet. Inhibition of extracellular CyPA through a novel specific inhibitor MM284 reduced thrombus after ferric chloride-induced injury in vivo. In vitro extracellular CyPA enhanced thrombus formation even in CyPA(-/-) platelets. Treatment of isolated platelets with recombinant CyPA resulted in platelet degranulation in a time- and dose-dependent manner. Inhibition of the platelet surface receptor extracellular matrix metalloproteinase inducer (cluster of differentiation 147) by an anticluster of differentiation 147 monoclonal antibody significantly reduced CyPA-dependent platelet degranulation. Pretreatment of platelets with CyPA enhanced their recruitment to mouse carotid arteries after arterial injury, which could be inhibited by an anticluster of differentiation 147 monoclonal antibody (intravital microscopy). The role of extracellular CyPA in adhesion could be confirmed by infusing CyPA(-/-) platelets in CyPA(+/+) mice and by infusing CyPA(+/+) platelets in CyPA(-/-) mice. Stimulation of platelets with CyPA induced phosphorylation of Akt, which could in turn be inhibited in the presence of phosphoinositid-3-kinase inhibitors. Akt-1(-/-) platelets revealed a markedly decreased degranulation on CyPA stimulation. Finally, ADP-induced platelet aggregation was attenuated by MM284, as well as by inhibiting paracrine-secreted CyPA without directly affecting Ca(2+)-signaling. Extracellular CyPA activates platelets via cluster of differentiation 147-mediated phosphoinositid-3-kinase/Akt-signaling, leading to enhanced adhesion and thrombus formation independently of intracellular CyPA. Targeting extracellular CyPA via a specific inhibitor may be a promising strategy for platelet inhibition without affecting critical functions of intracellular CyPA. © 2014 American Heart Association, Inc.
    Article · Dec 2014 · Arteriosclerosis Thrombosis and Vascular Biology
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Sodium potassium pump (Na+/K+ ATPase) is a validated pharmacological target for the treatment of various cardiac conditions. Recent published data with Na+/K+ ATPase inhibitors suggest a potent anti-cancer action of these agents in multiple indications. In the present study, we focus on istaroxime, a Na+/K+ ATPase inhibitor that has shown favorable safety and efficacy properties in cardiac phase II clinical trials. Our experiments in 22 cancer cell lines and in prostate tumors in vivo proved the strong anti-cancer action of this compound. Istaroxime induced apoptosis, affected the key proliferative and apoptotic mediators c-Myc and caspase-3 and modified actin cystoskeleton dynamics and RhoA activity in prostate cancer cells. Interestingly, istaroxime was capable of binding to mAR, a membrane receptor mediating rapid, non-genomic actions of steroids in prostate and other cells. These results support a multi-level action of Na+/K+ ATPase inhibitors in cancer cells and collectively validate istaroxime as a strong re-purposing candidate for further cancer drug development.
    Full-text Article · Nov 2014 · Oncotarget
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Platelets are activated by increased cytosolic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) following store-operated calcium entry (SOCE) accomplished by calciumrelease-activated calcium (CRAC) channel moiety Orai1 and its regulator STIM1. In other cells, Ca2+ transport is regulated by 1,25(OH)2 vitamin D3 [1,25(OH) 2D3]. 1,25(OH)2D3 formation is inhibited by klotho and excessive in klotho-deficient mice (kl/kl). The present study explored the effect of klotho deficiency on platelet Ca2+ signaling and activation. Platelets and megakaryocytes isolated from WT and kl/kl-mice were analyzed by RT-PCR, Western blotting, confocal microscopy, Fura-2-fluorescence, patch clamp, flow cytometry, aggregometry, and flow chamber. STIM1/Orai1 transcript and protein levels, SOCE, agonist-induced [Ca2+]i increase, activation-dependent degranulation, integrin αIIbβ3 activation and aggregation, and thrombus formation were significantly blunted in kl/kl platelets (by 27-90%). STIM1/Orai1 transcript and protein levels, as well as CRAC currents, were significantly reduced in kl/kl megakaryocytes (by 38-73%) and 1,25(OH) 2D3-treated WT megakaryocytes. Nuclear NF-kB subunit p50/p65 abundance was significantly reduced in kl/kl-megakaryocytes (by 51-76%). Transfection with p50/p65 significantly increased STIM1/Orai1 transcript and protein levels in megakaryocytic MEG-01 cells (by 46-97%). Low-vitamin D diet (LVD) of kl/kl mice normalized plasma 1,25(OH)2D3 concentration and function of platelets and megakaryocytes. Klotho deficiency inhibits platelet Ca2+ signaling and activation, an effect at least partially due to 1,25(OH)2D3-dependent down-regulation of NF-kB activity and STIM1/Orai1 expression in megakaryocytes.
    Full-text Article · Feb 2014 · The FASEB Journal
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Platelet activation is essential for primary hemostasis and acute thrombotic vascular occlusions. On activation, platelets release their prothrombotic granules and expose phosphatidylserines, thus fostering thrombin generation and thrombus formation. In other cell types, both degranulation and phosphatidylserine exposure are modified by sphingomyelinase-dependent formation of ceramide. The present study thus explored whether acid sphingomyelinase participates in the regulation of platelet secretion, phosphatidylserine exposure, and thrombus formation. Collagen-related peptide- induced or thrombin-induced ATP release and P-selectin exposure were significantly blunted in platelets from Asm-deficient mice (Smpd1(-/-)) when compared with platelets from wild-type mice (Smpd1(+/+)). Moreover, phosphatidylserine exposure and thrombin generation were significantly less pronounced in Smpd1(-/-) platelets than in Smpd1(+/+) platelets. In contrast, platelet integrin αIIbβ3 activation and aggregation, as well as activation-dependent Ca(2+) flux, were not significantly different between Smpd1(-/-) and Smpd1(+/+) platelets. In vitro thrombus formation at shear rates of 1700 s(-1) and in vivo thrombus formation after FeCl3 injury were significantly blunted in Smpd1(-/-) mice while bleeding time was unaffected. Asm-deficient platelets showed significantly reduced activation-dependent ceramide formation, whereas exogenous ceramide rescued diminished platelet secretion and thrombus formation caused by Asm deficiency. Treatment of Smpd1(+/+) platelets with bacterial sphingomyelinase (0.01 U/mL) increased, whereas treatment with functional acid sphingomyelinase-inhibitors, amitriptyline or fluoxetine (5 μmol/L), blunted activation-dependent platelet degranulation, phosphatidylserine exposure, and thrombus formation. Impaired degranulation and thrombus formation of Smpd1(-/-) platelets were again overcome by exogenous bacterial sphingomyelinase. Acid sphingomyelinase is a completely novel element in the regulation of platelet plasma membrane properties, secretion, and thrombus formation.
    Article · Nov 2013 · Arteriosclerosis Thrombosis and Vascular Biology
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tumor growth is fostered by inhibition of cell death, which involves the receptiveness of tumor to growth factors and hormones. We have recently shown that testosterone exerts proapoptotic effects in prostate and colon cancer cells through a membrane-initiated mechanism. In addition, we have recently reported that dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) can control cell fate, activating nerve growth factor (NGF) receptors, namely tropomyosin-related kinase (Trk)A and p75(NTR), in primary neurons and in PC12 tumoral cells. NGF was recently involved in cancer cell proliferation and apoptosis. In the present study, we explored the cross talk between androgens (testosterone and DHEA) and NGF in regulating apoptosis of prostate and colon cancer cells. DHEA and NGF strongly blunted serum deprivation-induced apoptosis, whereas testosterone induced apoptosis of both cancer cell lines. The antiapoptotic effect of both DHEA and NGF was completely reversed by testosterone. In line with this, DHEA or NGF up-regulated, whereas testosterone down-regulated, the expression of TrkA receptor. The effects of androgens were abolished in both cell lines in the presence of TrkA inhibitor. DHEA induced the phosphorylation of TrkA and the interaction of p75(NTR) receptor with its effectors, RhoGDI and RIP2. Conversely, testosterone was unable to activate both receptors. Testosterone acted as a DHEA and NGF antagonist, by blocking the activation of both receptors by DHEA or NGF. Our findings suggest that androgens may influence hormone-sensitive tumor cells via their cross talk with NGF receptors. The interplay between steroid hormone and neurotrophins signaling in hormone-dependent tumors offers new insights in the pathophysiology of these neoplasias.
    Full-text Article · May 2013 · Endocrinology
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Thrombin activates pore forming channel protein Orai1 resulting in store operated Ca(2+) entry (SOCE) with subsequent Ca(2+)-dependent release of platelet granules, activation of integrin αIIbβ3, adhesion, aggregation and thrombus formation. Platelets lack nuclei and are thus unable to modify protein abundance by transcriptional regulation. Nevertheless, they still contain pre-mRNA and mRNA and are thus able to express protein by stimulation of rapid translation. Platelet translation is sensitive to phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K) and actin polymerization. The present study explored whether platelet activation via thrombin modifies Orai1 protein abundance. According to RT-PCR platelets contain pre-mRNA and mRNA encoding Orai1. Activation with thrombin (0.1 U/ml) results in a significant decline of pre-mRNA, which is, according to Western blotting and confocal microscopy, paralleled by a marked and statistically significant increase of Orai1 protein abundance. The increase of Orai1 protein abundance is insensitive to inhibition of transcription with actinomycin (4 μg/ml), but is significantly blunted by inhibition of translation with puromycin (100 nM) and by inhibition of PI3K with wortmannin (100 nM) or LY294002 (25 μM). In conclusion, activation of platelets stimulates the translational expression of Orai1, thus augmenting platelet Ca(2+) signaling.
    Full-text Article · May 2013 · Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
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    Eva-Maria Schmidt · Evi Schmid · Patrick Münzer · [...] · Florian Lang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chorea-acanthocytosis (ChAc), a lethal disease caused by defective chorein, is characterized by neurodegeneration and erythrocyte acanthocytosis. The functional significance of chorein in other cell types remained ill-defined. The present study revealed chorein expression in blood platelets. As compared to platelets from healthy volunteers, platelets from patients with ChAc displayed a 47% increased globular/filamentous actin ratio, indicating actin depolymerization. Moreover, phosphoinositide-3-kinase subunit p85 phosphorylation, p21 protein-activated kinase (PAK1) phosphorylation, as well as vesicle-associated membrane protein 8 (VAMP8) expression were significantly reduced in platelets from patients with ChAc (by 17, 22, and 39%, respectively) and in megakaryocytic (MEG-01) cells following chorein silencing (by 16, 54, and 11%, respectively). Activation-induced platelet secretion from dense granules (ATP release) and α granules (P-selectin exposure) were significantly less (by 55% after stimulation with 1 μg/ml CRP and by 33% after stimulation with 5 μM TRAP, respectively) in ChAc platelets than in control platelets. Furthermore, platelet aggregation following stimulation with different platelet agonists was significantly impaired. These observations reveal a completely novel function of chorein, i.e., regulation of secretion and aggregation of blood platelets.-Schmidt, E.-M., Schmid, E., Münzer, P., Hermann, A., Eyrich, A.-K., Russo, A., Walker, B., Gu, S., Müller vom Hagen, J., Faggio, C., Schaller, M., Föller, M., Schöls, L., Gawaz, M., Borst, O., Storch, A., Stournaras, C., Lang, F. Chorein sensitivity of cytoskeletal organization and degranulation of platelets.
    Full-text Article · Apr 2013 · The FASEB Journal
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Glycopeptides, such as vancomycin, are powerful antibiotics against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Balhimycin, a glycopeptide antibiotic isolated from Amycolatopsis balhimycina, is similarly effective as vancomycin. Side effects of vancomycin include triggering of platelet apoptosis, which is characterized by cell shrinkage and by cell membrane scrambling with phosphatidylserine exposure at the cell surface. Stimulation of apoptosis may involve increase of cytosolic Ca(2+) activity, ceramide formation, mitochondrial depolarization and/or caspase activation. An effect of balhimycin on apoptosis has, however, never been reported. The present study thus tested whether balhimycin triggers platelet apoptosis. Human blood platelets were treated with balhimycin and cell volume was estimated from forward scatter, phosphatidylserine exposure from annexin V-binding, cytosolic Ca(2+) activity from fluo-3AM fluorescence, ceramide formation utilizing antibodies, mitochondrial potential from DiOC(6) fluorescence, and caspase-3 activity utilizing antibodies. As a result, a 30min exposure to balhimycin significantly decreased cell volume (⩾1μg/ml), triggered annexin V binding (⩾1μg/ml), increased cytosolic Ca(2+) activity (⩾1μg/ml), stimulated ceramide formation (⩾10μg/ml), depolarized mitochondria (⩾1μg/ml) and activated caspase-3 (⩾1μg/ml). Cell membrane scrambling and caspase-3 activation were virtually abrogated by removal of extracellular Ca(2+). Cell membrane scrambling was not significantly blunted by pancaspase inhibition with zVAD-FMK (1μM). In conclusion, balhimycin triggers cell membrane scrambling of platelets, an effect dependent on Ca(2+), but not on activation of caspases.
    Article · Feb 2013 · Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
  • Syeda T Towhid · Eva-Maria Schmidt · Alexander Tolios · [...] · Florian Lang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background/Aims: Side effects of vancomycin, a widely used antibiotic, include thrombocytopenia. The vancomycin-induced thrombocytopenia has been attributed to immune reactions. At least in theory, thrombocytopenia could result in part from the triggering of apoptosis, which results in cell shrinkage and cell membrane scrambling with subsequent phosphatidylserine exposure at the cell surface. The cell membrane scrambling could be initiated by a signaling involving increase of cytosolic Ca(2+) activity, ceramide formation, mitochondrial depolarization and/or caspase activation. Vancomycin has indeed been shown to trigger neutrophil apoptosis. An effect of vancomycin on platelet apoptosis has, however, never been tested. The present study thus explored the effect of vancomycin on platelet activation and apoptosis. Methods: Human blood platelets were exposed to vancomycin and forward scatter was utilized to estimate cell volume, annexin V-binding to quantify phosphatidylserine (PS) exposure, Fluo-3 AM fluorescence to estimate cytosolic Ca(2+) activity ([Ca(2+)](i)), antibodies to quantify ceramide formation and immunofluorescence to quantify protein abundance of active caspase-3. Results: A 30 minutes exposure to vancomycin (≥1 µg/ ml) decreased cell volume, triggered annexin V-binding, increased [Ca(2+)](i), activated caspase 3, stimulated ceramide formation, triggered release of thromboxane B(2), and upregulated surface expression of CD62P (P-selectin) as well as activated integrin α(llb)β(3). Annexin V-binding and upregulation of CD62P (P-selectin) and integrin α(llb)β(3) was significantly blunted by removal of extracellular Ca(2+). Annexin V-binding was not significantly blunted by pan-caspase inhibitor zVAD-FMK (1 µM). In conclusion, vancomycin results in platelet activation and suicidal platelet death with increase of [Ca(2+)](i), caspase-3 activation, cell membrane scrambling and cell shrinkage. Activation and cell membrane scrambling required the presence of Ca(2+), but not activation of caspases. Conclusion: Vancomycin exposure leads to platelet activation and apoptosis.
    Article · Jan 2013 · Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry
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    Shuchen Gu · Michalis Kounenidakis · Eva-Maria Schmidt · [...] · Christos Stournaras
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Actin cytoskeleton reorganization initiated by testosterone conjugates through activation of membrane androgen receptors (mAR) has recently been reported in colon tumor cells. This mAR-induced actin reorganization was recognized as a critical initial event, controlling apoptosis and inhibiting cell migration. The present study addressed the molecular signaling regulating the rapid actin remodeling initiated upon testosterone-induced mAR activation in Caco2 colon tumor cells. We report early phosphorylation of the Focal Adhesion Kinase (FAK), followed by substantial early phosphorylation of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), S6 kinase (p70S6K) and the actin regulating p21-activated kinase (PAK1). Pharmacological inhibition of FAK-sensitive phosphatidylinositide-3-kinase (PI-3K), a known element of mAR-signaling, fully abrogated the testosterone-induced actin reorganization and the activation of mTOR, p70S6K and PAK1. Similarly, inhibition of mTOR blocked p70S6K and PAK1 phosphorylation and actin remodeling. Pretreatment of the cells with the intracellular androgen receptor (iAR) antagonist flutamide or silencing iAR through siRNA did not influence mTOR phosphorylation and actin reorganization, indicating specific mAR-induced testosterone effects that are independent of iAR signaling. In conclusion, we demonstrate for the first time a new mAR-governed pathway involving FAK/PI-3K and mTOR/p70S6K/PAK1-cascade that regulates early actin reorganization in colon cancer cells.
    Full-text Article · Jan 2013 · Cellular Signalling
  • Syeda T. Towhid · Mulugeta Nega · Eva-Maria Schmidt · [...] · Florian Lang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Arithmetic means ± SEM (n = 10) of Annexin-V positive cells (%) after 30 min exposure to platelet buffer in the absence (0) and presence of 50 and 1000 ng/ml monomeric PGN (mPGN) and ionomycin 10 μM as a positive control. ***p < 0.001 indicates statistically significant difference to value in the absence of mPGN (one-way ANOVA). Each experiment included ionomycin 10 μM as positive control. b Arithmetic means ± SEM (n = 10) of Fluo-3AM staining for platelets stimulated 5 minutes without (0) and with monomeric mPGN (50 and 1000 ng/ml) and ionomycin 10 μM as a positive control. **p < 0.01 and ***p < 0.001 shows significant increase in Fluo-3AM fluoresecence due to Ca2+-influx (one-way ANOVA). Each experiment included ionomycin 10 μM as positive control. c Arithmetic means ± SEM (n = 8) of DiOC6 (MCF) in FACS analysis reflectin mitochondrial membrane potential of platelets following a 30 min exposure to platelet buffer in the absence (0) and presence of mPGN (50 and 1000 ng/ml), and ionomycin 10 μM as a positive control. **p < 0.01 shows significant decrease in mitochondrial membrane potential (one-way ANOVA). Each experiment included ionomycin 10 μM as positive control. d Arithmetic means ± SEM (n = 10) of the % human platelets with caspase-3 activation (%) following a 30 min exposure to platelet buffer in the absence (0) and presence of mPGN (50 and 1000 ng/ml) and ionomycin 10 μM as a positive control. ***p < 0.001 indicate statistically significant difference in comparison to the value of control (one-way ANOVA). Each experiment included ionomycin 10 μM as positive control
    Dataset · Sep 2012
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Rationale: The recently discovered chemokine CXC motif ligand 16 (CXCL16) is highly expressed in atherosclerotic lesions and is a potential pathogenic mediator in coronary artery disease. Objective: The aim of this study was to test the role of CXCL16 on platelet activation and vascular adhesion, as well as the underlying mechanism and signaling pathway. Methods and results: Reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, Western blotting, confocal microscopy, and flow cytometry revealed that CXCL16-specific receptor, CXC motif receptor 6, is highly expressed in platelets. According to flow cytometry and confocal microscopy, stimulation of platelets with CXCL16 induced platelet degranulation, integrin α(IIb)β(3) activation, and shape change. CXCL16 increased Akt phosphorylation (Thr(308)/Ser(473)), an effect abrogated by phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase inhibitors wortmannin (100 nmol/L) and LY294002 (25 µmol/L). The phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase inhibitors and Akt inhibitor SH-6 (20 µmol/L) further diminished CXCL16-induced platelet activation. CXCL16-mediated platelet degranulation, integrin α(IIb)β(3) activation, and Akt phosphorylation were blunted in platelets lacking CXCL16-specific receptor CXC motif receptor 6. CXCL16-induced platelet activation was abrogated in Akt1- or Akt2-deficient platelets. CXCL16 enhanced platelet adhesion to endothelium in vitro after high arterial shear stress (2000(-s)) and to injured vascular wall in vivo after carotid ligation. CXCL16-induced stimulation of platelet adhesion again was prevented by phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase and Akt inhibitors. Apyrase and antagonists of platelet purinergic receptors P(2)Y(1) (MRS2179, 100 µmol/L) and especially P(2)Y(12) (Cangrelor, 10 µmol/L) blunted CXCL16-triggered platelet activation as well as CXCL16-induced platelet adhesion under high arterial shear stress in vitro and after carotid ligation in vivo. Conclusions: The inflammatory chemokine CXCL16 triggers platelet activation and adhesion via CXC motif receptor 6-dependent phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase/Akt signaling and paracrine activation, suggesting a decisive role for CXCL16 in linking vascular inflammation and thrombo-occlusive diseases.
    Article · Aug 2012 · Circulation Research
  • Lisann Pelzl · Alexander Tolios · Eva-Maria Schmidt · [...] · Florian Lang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Activation of platelets by thrombin opens pore forming channel protein Orai1 with subsequent store operated Ca(2+) entry (SOCE) and Ca(2+) dependent platelet granule release, integrin α(IIb)β(3) activation, adhesion, aggregation and thrombus formation. Orai1 and thus SOCE as well as platelet activation are up-regulated by the serum- and glucocorticoid-inducible kinase-1 (SGK1), which transcriptionally regulates Orai1 expression in megakaryocytes and thus determines Orai1 protein abundance in mature, circulating platelets. As platelets are devoid of nuclei, they are unable to modify protein abundance by regulation of transcription. However, they contain mRNA and thus could express novel protein by stimulation of protein translation. Translation is sensitive to actin polymerization and phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K). Translational regulation of SGK1 expression has never been described before. The present study thus explored whether thrombin regulates SGK1 expression in platelets. As a result, according to RT-PCR mRNA encoding SGK1 is present in circulating platelets and significantly decreased by activation of platelets with thrombin (1 U/ml). The protein abundance of SGK1 is significantly enhanced by thrombin treatment, an effect significantly decreased by inhibition of translation with puromycin (100 nM) but not by inhibition of transcription with actinomycin (4 μg/ml). The increase of SGK1 protein abundance is blunted by inhibition of PI3K with wortmannin (100 nM) or LY294002 (25 μM), and by disruption of the cytoskeleton with cytochalasin B (1 μM). In conclusion, activation of platelets with thrombin stimulates the translation of SGK1.
    Article · Jul 2012 · Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
  • Syeda T Towhid · Mulugeta Nega · Eva-Maria Schmidt · [...] · Florian Lang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Peptidoglycan (PGN), a component of bacterial cell wall and belonging to "Microbe-Associated Molecular Patterns" (MAMP) triggers host reactions contributing to the pathophysiology of infectious disease. Host cell responses to PGN exposure include apoptosis. Bacterial infections may result in activation of blood platelets and thrombocytopenia. The present study explored, whether HPLC-purified fractions of PGNs from Staphylococcus aureus 113 triggers apoptosis of platelets. To this end platelets were exposed to PGN fractions and annexin-V binding determined to depict cell membrane scrambling, DiOC6 fluorescence to estimate depolarization of mitochondrial potential, Fluo-3AM staining for intracellular Ca(2+) activity ([Ca(2+)](i)) and immunofluorescence to quantify protein abundance of active caspase-3. As a result, a 30 min exposure to monomeric fraction (mPGN) (≥50 ng/ml) was followed by annexin-V binding, paralleled by increase of [Ca(2+)](i), mitochondrial depolarization, caspase-3 activation and integrin α(IIb)β(3) upregulation. The annexin-V binding was significantly blunted by anti-TLR-2 antibodies, in absence of extracellular Ca(2+), and by pancaspase inhibitor zVAD-FMK (1 μM). In conclusion, PGN triggers apoptosis of platelets in activation-dependent manner, characterized by mitochondrial depolarization, caspase-3 activation and cell membrane scrambling.
    Article · Jul 2012 · Apoptosis
  • Eva-Maria Schmidt · Bjoern F Kraemer · Oliver Borst · [...] · Florian Lang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent observations pointed to the ability of platelets to migrate and thus to invade the inflamed vascular wall. Platelet migration could be stimulated by stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1), an effect dependent on phosphatidylinositide-3-kinase (PI3K) and paralleled by activation and phosphorylation of Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP). Migration is inhibited by vinculin, which is similarly regulated by phosphorylation. PI3K-sensitive kinases include the serum- and glucocorticoid-inducible kinase 1 (SGK1). The present study explored whether SGK1 modifies WASP and vinculin phosphorylation in murine platelets and participates in the regulation of platelet migration. Platelets were isolated from gene-targeted mice lacking SGK1 (sgk1(-/-)) and from their wild type littermates (sgk1(+/+)). Platelet migration stimulated with SDF-1 was significantly less pronounced in sgk1(-/-)platelets than in sgk1(+/+) platelets. Moreover, SDF-1 significantly induced WASP phosphorylation, an effect again reduced in platelets lacking SGK1. Phosphorylation of vinculin was significantly enhanced in sgk1(-/-)platelets and was significantly reduced following treatment of platelets with Ca(2+) chelator BAPTA. Immunohistochemical analysis of in vivo experiments in intestinal vessels after vascular inflammation revealed that transmigration of platelets into inflamed vessel walls was significantly less pronounced in sgk1(-/-)than in sgk1(+/+) mice. In conclusion, SGK1 is a powerful regulator of platelet migration.
    Article · Jun 2012 · Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Extracellular cyclophilin A (CyPA) and its receptor Extracellular Matrix Metalloproteinase Inducer (EMMPRIN, CD147) modulate inflammatory processes beyond metalloproteinase (MMP) activity. Recently, we have shown that CyPA and CD147 are upregulated in patients with inflammatory cardiomyopathy. Here we investigate the role of CyPA and CD147 in murine coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3)-induced myocarditis. CVB3-infected CyPA(-/-) mice (129S6/SvEv) revealed a significantly reduced T-cell and macrophage recruitment at 8 days p.i. compared to wild-type mice. In A.BY/SnJ mice, treatment with the cyclophilin-inhibitor NIM811 was associated with a reduction of inflammatory lesions and MMP-9 expression but with enhanced virus replication 8 days p.i. At 28 days p.i. the extent of lesion areas was not affected bei NIM811, whereas the collagen content was reduced. Initiation of NIM811-treatment on day 12 (after an effective virus defense) resulted in an even more pronounced reduction of myocardial fibrosis. In conclusion, in CVB3-induced myocarditis CyPA is important for macrophage and T cell recruitment and effective virus defense and may represent a pharmacological target to modulate myocardial remodeling in myocarditis.
    Article · Mar 2012 · Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology
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    Eva-Maria Schmidt · Shuchen Gu · Vasileia Anagnostopoulou · [...] · Christos Stournaras
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The serum- and glucocorticoid-dependent kinases 1-3 (SGK1-3) are downstream effectors of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinases, implicated in various cell responses including colon cancer tumorigenesis in mice. Here, we investigated the role of SGK1 in the regulation of cell motility. Using Caco-2 colon tumor and HEK293 embryonic kidney cells, we report that transfection with the constitutively active SGK1 mutant (SGK1-SD) significantly enhanced cell motility. The cell-adhesion protein vinculin was effectively dephosphorylated in SGK1-SD-transfected cells. Treatment of the cells with phosphatase inhibitors restored vinculin phosphorylation and inhibited cell migration, indicating a significant role for vinculin phosphorylation in SGK1-induced motility. SGK1-SD-enhanced cell motility was inhibited by activation of membrane androgen-binding sites (mAR) via testosterone-conjugates in both cell lines, whereas intracellular androgen receptor (iAR)-silencing and flutamide treatment revealed that these effects were clearly independent of the interaction of SGK1 with the classical androgen receptors (iAR). More importantly, mAR activation restored vinculin phosphorylation in SGK1-SD-transfected cells, whereas silencing of vinculin fully reversed the mAR-induced inhibition of the migratory capacity, implying that this protein is directly involved in cell motility regulation by SGK1 and mAR. This study indicates for the first time that SGK1 regulates cell migration via vinculin dephosphorylation, a mechanism that is controlled by mAR function.
    Full-text Article · Feb 2012 · FEBS Journal
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chorea-acanthocytosis is an inevitably lethal genetic disease characterized by a progressive hyperkinetic movement disorder and cognitive and behavioral abnormalities as well as acanthocytosis. The disease is caused by loss-of-function mutations of the gene encoding vacuolar protein sorting-associated protein 13A (VPS13A) or chorein, a protein with unknown function expressed in various cell types. How chorein deficiency leads to the pathophysiology of chorea-acanthocytosis remains enigmatic. Here we show decreased phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K)-p85-subunit phosphorylation, ras-related C3 botulinum toxin substrate 1 (Rac1) activity, and p21 protein-activated kinase 1 (PAK1) phosphorylation as well as depolymerized cortical actin in erythrocytes from patients with chorea-acanthocytosis and in K562-erythrocytic cells following chorein silencing. Pharmacological inhibition of PI3K, Rac1, or PAK1 similarly triggered actin depolymerization. Moreover, in K562 cells, both chorein silencing and PAK1 inhibition with IPA-3 decreased phosphorylation of Bad, a Bcl2-associated protein, promoting apoptosis by forming mitochondrial pores, followed by mitochondrial depolarization, DNA fragmentation, and phosphatidylserine exposure at the cell surface, all hallmarks of apoptosis. Our observations reveal chorein as a novel powerful regulator of cytoskeletal architecture and cell survival, thus explaining erythrocyte misshape and possibly neurodegeneration in chorea-acanthocytosis.
    Article · Jan 2012 · The FASEB Journal
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    Oliver Borst · Eva-Maria Schmidt · Patrick Münzer · [...] · Florian Lang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Platelets are activated on increase of cytosolic Ca2+ activity ([Ca2+](i)), accomplished by store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) involving the pore-forming ion channel subunit Orai1. Here, we show, for the first time, that the serum- and glucocorticoid-inducible kinase 1 (SGK1) is expressed in platelets and megakaryocytes. SOCE and agonist-induced [Ca2+](i) increase are significantly blunted in platelets from SGK1 knockout mice (sgk1(-/-)). Similarly, Ca2+ -dependent degranulation, integrin α(IIb)β3 activation, phosphatidylserine exposure, aggregation, and in vitro thrombus formation were significantly impaired in sgk1(-/-) platelets, whereas tail bleeding time was not significantly enhanced. Platelet and megakaryocyte Orai1 transcript levels and membrane protein abundance were significantly reduced in sgk1(-/-) mice. In human megakaryoblastic cells (MEG-01), transfection with constitutively active (S422D)SGK1 but not with inactive (K127N)SGK1 significantly enhanced Orai1 expression and SOCE, while effects reversed by the SGK1 inhibitor GSK650394 (1μM). Transfection of MEG-01 cells with (S422D)SGK1 significantly increased phosphorylation of IκB kinase α/β and IκBα resulting in nuclear translocation of NF-κB subunit p65. Treatment of (S422D)SGK1-transfected MEG-01 cells with the IκB kinase inhibitor BMS-345541 (10μM) abolished SGK1-induced increase of Orai1 expression and SOCE. The present observations unravel SGK1 as novel regulator of platelet function, effective at least in part by NF-κB-dependent transcriptional up-regulation of Orai1 in megakaryocytes and increasing platelet SOCE.
    Full-text Article · Jan 2012 · Blood