Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Handeling Stress: Life And Death Decisions At The Cellular Level

Date:
September 17, 2001
Source:
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Summary:
The daily life of a cell can be inordinately stressful. Two papers in the September 15th issue of Genes & Development highlight recent discoveries that have been made regarding how cells handle environmental stress, and decide whether or not their life is worth living. Both papers lend valuable insight into the ways that different cells respond to oxygen deprivation, or hypoxia.

The daily life of a cell can be inordinately stressful. Two papers in the September 15th issue of Genes & Development highlight recent discoveries that have been made regarding how cells handle environmental stress, and decide whether or not their life is worth living. Both papers lend valuable insight into the ways that different cells respond to oxygen deprivation, or hypoxia.

Teetering on the Edge

A team of scientists led by Dr. Bohdan Wasylyk at the INSERM research center in France has discovered that the steroid receptor, GR, and the tumor suppressor, p53, interact during periods of oxygen deprivation to help balance the decision between cell survival and cell death.

p53 is commonly referred to as "the guardian of the genome" for its integral role in mediating either cell cycle arrest or cell death in response to various types of cell stress. Loss of p53 function can lead to unregulated cell proliferation, an event that is associated with the development of most tumors. The glucocorticoid receptor, GR, binds steroid hormones and helps to mediate the normal response to stress.

Dr. Wasylyk and colleagues determined that under hypoxic conditions p53 and ligand-bound GR directly associate with one another in the cytoplasm of the cell. This p53/GR complex is then bound by another protein, Hdm2, which facilitates the degredation of both p53 and GR. In this manner, the p53-mediated death response is held in check by GR, and the GR-mediated survival response is held in check by p53. This antagonistic interaction between p53 and GR represents a novel mechanism to balance cell survival and cell death in response to environmental stress.

Nervous Stress

Scientists from UMASS Medical School and Yale University School of Medicine report on the involvement of a key player in the stress response pathway in neurons. The JIP1 protein is a component of a pathway that is activated in response to cell stress and can trigger cell death. JIP1 binds to a control protein, JNK, that regulates the activity of other proteins through the addition of phosphate groups. It is thought that JIP1 acts as a scaffold protein that facilitates the assembly of specific signaling complexes.

Dr. Davis and colleagues now show that in response to severe hypoxic stress, JIP1 in neurons is relocated from the neurites to the cell body where it forms a complex with activated JNK. But is JIP1 really required for JNK activation in response to stress? To address this question, the team generated a strain of mice deficient in JIP1. While JIP1-deficient mice were viable and fertile, studies on these mice showed that their neurons did not respond to stress. When JIP1-deficient neurons were exposed to hypoxic stress, JNK was not activated and stress-induced apoptosis was therefore reduced. Thus, JIP1 is clearly required for JNK activation and is a critical component of the stress-induced JNK signaling cascade.

The JNK stress pathway is thought to be important in many pathological conditions including the progression of some neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington’s and also in cancer. This pathway therefore offers potential targets for therapeutic intervention. The identification of critical components of this signaling pathway, such as JIP1, offers new routes to understand how this pathway is regulated and potential ways of manipulating it to combat disease.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. "Handeling Stress: Life And Death Decisions At The Cellular Level." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 September 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/09/010917075255.htm>.
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. (2001, September 17). Handeling Stress: Life And Death Decisions At The Cellular Level. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/09/010917075255.htm
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. "Handeling Stress: Life And Death Decisions At The Cellular Level." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/09/010917075255.htm (accessed August 27, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

WHO Calls for Ban on E-Cigarette Sales to Minors

WHO Calls for Ban on E-Cigarette Sales to Minors

AFP (Aug. 26, 2014) The World Health Organization called Tuesday on governments should ban the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, warning that they pose a "serious threat" to foetuses and young people. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Have You Ever Been 'Sleep Drunk?' 1 in 7 Has

Have You Ever Been 'Sleep Drunk?' 1 in 7 Has

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) A study published in the journal "Neurology" interviewed more than 19,000 people and found 15 percent suffer from being "sleep drunk." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Does Medical Marijuana Reduce Painkiller Overdose Deaths?

Does Medical Marijuana Reduce Painkiller Overdose Deaths?

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) A new study found fewer deaths from prescription drug overdoses in states that have legalized medical marijuana. But experts disagree on the results. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Official: British Ebola Sufferer Receiving Experimental Drug

Official: British Ebola Sufferer Receiving Experimental Drug

AFP (Aug. 26, 2014) A British nurse infected with Ebola while working in Sierra Leone is being given the same experimental drug used on two US missionaries who have recovered for the disease, doctors in London say. Duration: 00:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins