FMP Publications

Our publications are recorded in a searchable database since 2010, updates will be added regularly.

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Loss of the Na+/H+ exchanger NHE8 causes male infertility in mice by disrupting acrosome formation
Oberheide, K., Puchkov, D.; Jentsch, T. J.
J Biol Chem,

Tags: Physiology and Pathology of Ion Transport (Jentsch), Cellular Imaging (Wiesner/Puchkov)

Abstract: Mammalian sperm feature a specialized secretory organelle on the anterior part of the sperm nucleus, the acrosome, which is essential for male fertility. It is formed by a fusion of Golgi-derived vesicles. We show here that the predominantly Golgi-resident Na+/H+ exchanger NHE8 localizes to the developing acrosome of spermatids. Similar to wild-type mice, Nhe8-/- mice generated Golgi-derived vesicles positive for acrosomal markers and attached to nuclei, but these vesicles failed to form large acrosomal granules and the acrosomal cap. Spermatozoa from Nhe8-/- mice completely lacked acrosomes, were round-headed, exhibited abnormal mitochondrial distribution and displayed decreased motility, resulting in selective male infertility. Of note, similar features are also found in globozoospermia, one of the causes of male infertility in humans. Germ cell-specific, but not Sertoli cell-specific Nhe8 disruption recapitulated the globozoospermia phenotype, demonstrating that NHE8's role in spermiogenesis is germ cell-intrinsic. Our work has uncovered a crucial role of NHE8 in acrosome biogenesis and suggests that some forms of human globozoospermia might be caused by a loss of function of this Na+/H+ exchanger. It points to NHE8 as a candidate gene for human globozoospermia and a possible drug target for male contraception.

Regulation of body weight and energy homeostasis by neuronal cell adhesion molecule 1
Rathjen(*), T., Yan(*), X., Kononenko, N. L., Ku(*), M. C., Song(*), K., Ferrarese(*), L., Tarallo(*), V., Puchkov, D., Kochlamazashvili, G., Brachs(*), S., Varela(*), L., Szigeti-Buck(*), K., Yi(*), C. X., Schriever(*), S. C., Tattikota(*), S. G., Carlo(*), A. S., Moroni(*), M., Siemens(*), J., Heuser(*), A., van der Weyden(*), L., Birkenfeld(*), A. L., Niendorf(*), T., Poulet(*), J. F. A., Horvath(*), T. L., Tschop(*), M. H., Heinig(*), M., Trajkovski(*), M., Haucke, V.; Poy(*), M. N.
Nat Neurosci,

Tags: Molecular Pharmacology and Cell Biology (Haucke), Cellular Imaging (Wiesner, Puchkov)

Abstract: Susceptibility to obesity is linked to genes regulating neurotransmission, pancreatic beta-cell function and energy homeostasis. Genome-wide association studies have identified associations between body mass index and two loci near cell adhesion molecule 1 (CADM1) and cell adhesion molecule 2 (CADM2), which encode membrane proteins that mediate synaptic assembly. We found that these respective risk variants associate with increased CADM1 and CADM2 expression in the hypothalamus of human subjects. Expression of both genes was elevated in obese mice, and induction of Cadm1 in excitatory neurons facilitated weight gain while exacerbating energy expenditure. Loss of Cadm1 protected mice from obesity, and tract-tracing analysis revealed Cadm1-positive innervation of POMC neurons via afferent projections originating from beyond the arcuate nucleus. Reducing Cadm1 expression in the hypothalamus and hippocampus promoted a negative energy balance and weight loss. These data identify essential roles for Cadm1-mediated neuronal input in weight regulation and provide insight into the central pathways contributing to human obesity.

Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis Occurs on Multiple Timescales and Is Mediated by Formin-Dependent Actin Assembly
Soykan, T., Kaempf, N., Sakaba(*), T., Vollweiter, D., Goerdeler, F., Puchkov, D., Kononenko, N. L.; Haucke, V.
Neuron, 93:854-866.e854

Tags: Molecular Pharmacology and Cell Biology (Haucke), Cellular Imaging (Wiesner, Puchkov)

Abstract: Neurotransmission is based on the exocytic fusion of synaptic vesicles (SVs) followed by endocytic membrane retrieval and the reformation of SVs. Recent data suggest that at physiological temperature SVs are internalized via clathrin-independent ultrafast endocytosis (UFE) within hundreds of milliseconds, while other studies have postulated a key role for clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME) of SV proteins on a timescale of seconds to tens of seconds. Here we demonstrate using cultured hippocampal neurons as a model that at physiological temperature SV endocytosis occurs on several timescales from less than a second to several seconds, yet, is largely independent of clathrin. Clathrin-independent endocytosis (CIE) of SV membranes is mediated by actin-nucleating formins such as mDia1, which are required for the formation of presynaptic endosome-like vacuoles from which SVs reform. Our results resolve previous discrepancies in the field and suggest that SV membranes are predominantly retrieved via CIE mediated by formin-dependent actin assembly.

Claudin peptidomimetics modulate tissue barriers for enhanced drug delivery
Dithmer, S., Staat, C., Müller, C., Ku(*), M. C., Pohlmann(*), A., Niendorf(*), T., Gehne, N., Fallier-Becker(*), P., Kittel(*), A., Walter(*), F. R., Veszelka(*), S., Deli(*), M. A., Blasig, R., Haseloff, R. F., Blasig, I. E.; Winkler, L.
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1397:169-184

Tags: Molecular Cell Physiology (Blasig, I.E.)

Abstract: The blood-brain barrier (BBB) formed by the microvascular endothelium limits cerebral drug delivery. The paraendothelial cleft is sealed by tight junctions (TJs) with a major contribution from claudin-5, which we selected as a target to modulate BBB permeability. For this purpose, drug-enhancer peptides were designed based on the first extracellular loop (ECL) of claudin-5 to allow transient BBB permeabilization. Peptidomimetics (C5C2 and derivatives, nanomolar affinity to claudin-5) size-selectively (</=40 kDa) and reversibly (12-48 h) increased the permeability of brain endothelial and claudin-5-transfected epithelial cell monolayers. Upon peptide uptake, the number of TJ strand particles diminished, claudin-5 was downregulated and redistributed from cell-cell contacts to the cytosol, and the cell shape was altered. Cellular permeability of doxorubicin (cytostatic drug, 580 Da) was enhanced after peptide administration. Mouse studies (3.5 mumol/kg i.v.) confirmed that, for both C5C2 and a d-amino acid derivative, brain uptake of Gd-diethylene-triamine penta-acetic acid (547 Da) was enhanced within 4 h of treatment. On the basis of our functional data, circular dichroism measurements, molecular modeling, and docking experiments, we suggest an association model between beta-sheets flanked by alpha-helices, formed by claudin-5 ECLs, and the peptides. In conclusion, we identified claudin-5 peptidomimetics that improve drug delivery through endothelial and epithelial barriers expressing claudin-5.

Claudins are essential for cell shape changes and convergent extension movements during neural tube closure
Baumholtz(*), A. I., Simard(*), A., Nikolopoulou(*), E., Oosenbrug(*), M., Collins(*), M. M., Piontek, A., Krause, G., Piontek(*), J., Greene(*), N. D. E.; Ryan(*), A. K.
Developmental biology, 428:25-38

Tags: Structural Bioinformatics and Protein Design (Krause, G.)

Abstract: During neural tube closure, regulated changes at the level of individual cells are translated into large-scale morphogenetic movements to facilitate conversion of the flat neural plate into a closed tube. Throughout this process, the integrity of the neural epithelium is maintained via cell interactions through intercellular junctions, including apical tight junctions. Members of the claudin family of tight junction proteins regulate paracellular permeability, apical-basal cell polarity and link the tight junction to the actin cytoskeleton. Here, we show that claudins are essential for neural tube closure: the simultaneous removal of Cldn3, -4 and -8 from tight junctions caused folate-resistant open neural tube defects. Their removal did not affect cell type differentiation, neural ectoderm patterning nor overall apical-basal polarity. However, apical accumulation of Vangl2, RhoA, and pMLC were reduced, and Par3 and Cdc42 were mislocalized at the apical cell surface. Our data showed that claudins act upstream of planar cell polarity and RhoA/ROCK signaling to regulate cell intercalation and actin-myosin contraction, which are required for convergent extension and apical constriction during neural tube closure, respectively.

In colon epithelia, Clostridium perfringens enterotoxin causes focal leaks by targeting claudins which are apically accessible due to tight junction derangement
Eichner(*), M., Augustin(*), C., Fromm(*), A., Piontek, A., Walther(*), W., Bücker(*), R., Fromm(*), M., Krause, G., Schulzke(*), J. D., Günzel(*), D.; Piontek(*), J.
The Journal of infectious diseases,

Tags: Structural Bioinformatics and Protein Design (Krause, G.)

Abstract: Clostridium perfringens enterotoxin (CPE) causes food poisoning and antibiotic-associated diarrhea. It uses some claudin tight junction proteins (e.g. claudin-4) as receptors to form Ca2+-permeable pores in the membrane damaging epithelial cells in small intestine and colon. We demonstrate that only a subpopulation of colonic enterocytes which are characterized by apical dislocation of claudins are CPE-susceptible. CPE-mediated damage was enhanced if paracellular barrier was impaired by Ca2+-depletion, proinflammatory cytokine TNFalpha or dedifferentiation. Microscopy, Ca2+-monitoring, and electrophysiological data showed that CPE-mediated cytotoxicity and barrier disruption was limited by extent of CPE-binding. The latter was restricted by accessibility of non-junctional claudin molecules such as claudin-4 at apical membranes. Focal-leaks detected in HT-29/B6 colonic monolayers were verified for native tissue using colon biopsies. These mechanistic findings indicate how CPE-mediated effects may turn from self-limiting diarrhea into severe clinical manifestation such as colonic necrosis - if intestinal barrier dysfunction e.g. during inflammation facilitates claudin accessibility.

Establishment of a Human Blood-Brain Barrier Co-culture Model Mimicking the Neurovascular Unit Using Induced Pluri- and Multipotent Stem Cells
Appelt-Menzel(*), A., Cubukova(*), A., Günther(*), K., Edenhofer(*), F., Piontek(*), J., Krause, G., Stüber(*), T., Walles(*), H., Neuhaus(*), W.; Metzger(*), M.
Stem cell reports, 8:894-906

Tags: Structural Bioinformatics and Protein Design (Krause, G.)

Abstract: In vitro models of the human blood-brain barrier (BBB) are highly desirable for drug development. This study aims to analyze a set of ten different BBB culture models based on primary cells, human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), and multipotent fetal neural stem cells (fNSCs). We systematically investigated the impact of astrocytes, pericytes, and NSCs on hiPSC-derived BBB endothelial cell function and gene expression. The quadruple culture models, based on these four cell types, achieved BBB characteristics including transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) up to 2,500 Omega cm2 and distinct upregulation of typical BBB genes. A complex in vivo-like tight junction (TJ) network was detected by freeze-fracture and transmission electron microscopy. Treatment with claudin-specific TJ modulators caused TEER decrease, confirming the relevant role of claudin subtypes for paracellular tightness. Drug permeability tests with reference substances were performed and confirmed the suitability of the models for drug transport studies.

The ClC-K2 Chloride Channel Is Critical for Salt Handling in the Distal Nephron
Hennings(*), J. C., Andrini(*), O., Picard(*), N., Paulais(*), M., Huebner(*), A. K., Cayuqueo(*), I. K., Bignon(*), Y., Keck(*), M., Corniere(*), N., Böhm(*), D., Jentsch, T. J., Chambrey(*), R., Teulon(*), J., Hübner(*), C. A.; Eladari(*), D.
Journal of the American Society of Nephrology : JASN, 28:209-217

Tags: Physiology and Pathology of Ion Transport (Jentsch)

Abstract: Chloride transport by the renal tubule is critical for blood pressure (BP), acid-base, and potassium homeostasis. Chloride uptake from the urinary fluid is mediated by various apical transporters, whereas basolateral chloride exit is thought to be mediated by ClC-Ka/K1 and ClC-Kb/K2, two chloride channels from the ClC family, or by KCl cotransporters from the SLC12 gene family. Nevertheless, the localization and role of ClC-K channels is not fully resolved. Because inactivating mutations in ClC-Kb/K2 cause Bartter syndrome, a disease that mimics the effects of the loop diuretic furosemide, ClC-Kb/K2 is assumed to have a critical role in salt handling by the thick ascending limb. To dissect the role of this channel in detail, we generated a mouse model with a targeted disruption of the murine ortholog ClC-K2. Mutant mice developed a Bartter syndrome phenotype, characterized by renal salt loss, marked hypokalemia, and metabolic alkalosis. Patch-clamp analysis of tubules isolated from knockout (KO) mice suggested that ClC-K2 is the main basolateral chloride channel in the thick ascending limb and in the aldosterone-sensitive distal nephron. Accordingly, ClC-K2 KO mice did not exhibit the natriuretic response to furosemide and exhibited a severely blunted response to thiazide. We conclude that ClC-Kb/K2 is critical for salt absorption not only by the thick ascending limb, but also by the distal convoluted tubule.

Gamma oscillations organize top-down signalling to hypothalamus and enable food seeking
Carus-Cadavieco, M., Gorbati, M., Ye(*), L., Bender, F., van der Veldt, S., Kosse(*), C., Borgers(*), C., Lee(*), S. Y., Ramakrishnan(*), C., Hu, Y., Denisova, N., Ramm, F., Volitaki, E., Burdakov(*), D., Deisseroth(*), K., Ponomarenko, A.; Korotkova, T.
Nature, 542:232-236

Tags: Behavioral Neurodynamics (Korotkova/Ponomarenko)

Abstract: Both humans and animals seek primary rewards in the environment, even when such rewards do not correspond to current physiological needs. An example of this is a dissociation between food-seeking behaviour and metabolic needs, a notoriously difficult-to-treat symptom of eating disorders. Feeding relies on distinct cell groups in the hypothalamus, the activity of which also changes in anticipation of feeding onset. The hypothalamus receives strong descending inputs from the lateral septum, which is connected, in turn, with cortical networks, but cognitive regulation of feeding-related behaviours is not yet understood. Cortical cognitive processing involves gamma oscillations, which support memory, attention, cognitive flexibility and sensory responses. These functions contribute crucially to feeding behaviour by unknown neural mechanisms. Here we show that coordinated gamma (30-90 Hz) oscillations in the lateral hypothalamus and upstream brain regions organize food-seeking behaviour in mice. Gamma-rhythmic input to the lateral hypothalamus from somatostatin-positive lateral septum cells evokes food approach without affecting food intake. Inhibitory inputs from the lateral septum enable separate signalling by lateral hypothalamus neurons according to their feeding-related activity, making them fire at distinct phases of the gamma oscillation. Upstream, medial prefrontal cortical projections provide gamma-rhythmic inputs to the lateral septum; these inputs are causally associated with improved performance in a food-rewarded learning task. Overall, our work identifies a top-down pathway that uses gamma synchronization to guide the activity of subcortical networks and to regulate feeding behaviour by dynamic reorganization of functional cell groups in the hypothalamus.

Sleep & metabolism: The multitasking ability of lateral hypothalamic inhibitory circuitries
Herrera(*), C. G., Ponomarenko, A., Korotkova, T., Burdakov(*), D.; Adamantidis(*), A.
Front Neuroendocrinol, 44:27-34

Tags: Behavioral Neurodynamics (Korotkova/Ponomarenko)

Abstract: The anatomical and functional mapping of lateral hypothalamic circuits has been limited by the numerous cell types and complex, yet unclear, connectivity. Recent advances in functional dissection of input-output neurons in the lateral hypothalamus have identified subset of inhibitory cells as crucial modulators of both sleep-wake states and metabolism. Here, we summarize these recent studies and discuss the multi-tasking functions of hypothalamic circuitries in integrating sleep and metabolism in the mammalian brain.

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Leibniz-Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie im Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V. (FMP)
Campus Berlin-Buch
Robert-Roessle-Str. 10
13125 Berlin, Germany
+4930 94793 - 100 
+4930 94793 - 109 (Fax)

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