Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Mechanism of sculpting the plasma membrane of intestinal cells identified

Date:
August 2, 2011
Source:
Helsingin yliopisto (University of Helsinki)
Summary:
Scientists have identified a previously unknown mechanism which modifies the structure of plasma membranes in intestinal epithelial cells. Unlike other proteins with a similar function, the new protein -- named 'Pinkbar' by the researchers - creates planar membrane sheets. Further research investigates the potential connection of this protein with various intestinal disorders.

The research group of Professor Pekka Lappalainen at the Institute of Biotechnology, University of Helsinki, has identified a previously unknown mechanism which modifies the structure of plasma membranes in intestinal epithelial cells. Unlike other proteins with a similar function, the new protein -- named 'Pinkbar' by the researchers -- creates planar membrane sheets. Further research investigates the potential connection of this protein with various intestinal disorders.

The study was published in Nature Structural & Molecular Biology.

A dynamic plasma membrane surrounds all eukaryotic cells. Membrane plasticity is essential for a number of cellular processes; changes in the structure of the plasma membrane enable cell migration, cell division, intake of nutrients and many neurobiological and immunological events.

Earlier research has shown that certain membrane-binding proteins can 'sculpt' the membrane to generate tubular structures with positive or negative curvature, and consequently induce the formation of protrusions or invaginations on the surface of the cell. These membrane-sculpting proteins are involved in various vital cellular processes and can control the shape of the plasma membrane with surprising precision. Many of them have also been linked to severe diseases such as cancer and neurological syndromes.

Identified by Anette Pykäläinen, a member of Professor Lappalainen's group who is currently finalising her dissertation, the new membrane sculpting protein has a different mechanism than other proteins studied previously. Instead of generating positive and negative curvature, the Pinkbar protein is able to produce planar membrane sheets. Lappalainen's group determined the membrane-sculpting mechanism of Pinkbar in collaboration with an American research group. In humans, Pinkbar is only found in intestinal epithelial cells where it may be involved in the regulation of intestinal permeability. In the future, it will be important to identify the exact physiological function of Pinkbar in intestinal epithelial cells and to study the possible links of this protein to various intestinal disorders.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Helsingin yliopisto (University of Helsinki). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Anette Pykäläinen, Malgorzata Boczkowska, Hongxia Zhao, Juha Saarikangas, Grzegorz Rebowski, Maurice Jansen, Janne Hakanen, Essi V Koskela, Johan Peränen, Helena Vihinen, Eija Jokitalo, Marjo Salminen, Elina Ikonen, Roberto Dominguez, Pekka Lappalainen. Pinkbar is an epithelial-specific BAR domain protein that generates planar membrane structures. Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, 2011; DOI: 10.1038/nsmb.2079

Cite This Page:

Helsingin yliopisto (University of Helsinki). "Mechanism of sculpting the plasma membrane of intestinal cells identified." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110801094312.htm>.
Helsingin yliopisto (University of Helsinki). (2011, August 2). Mechanism of sculpting the plasma membrane of intestinal cells identified. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110801094312.htm
Helsingin yliopisto (University of Helsinki). "Mechanism of sculpting the plasma membrane of intestinal cells identified." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110801094312.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — A Texas man is lucky to be alive after he and three others floated for more than a day in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat sank during a fishing trip. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Since the arrival of Ebola in Ivory Coast, Ivorians have been abandoning their pets, particularly monkeys, in the fear that they may transmit the virus. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Links Male-Pattern Baldness To Prostate Cancer

Study Links Male-Pattern Baldness To Prostate Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — New findings suggest men with a certain type of baldness at age 45 are 39 percent more likely to develop aggressive prostate cancer. Video provided by Newsy
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