Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity

22.09.2017

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity by tracing developmental origins

Dr. Nikolay Ninov, group leader at the DFG research center for Regenerative Therapies Dresden (CRTD), Cluster of Excellence at the TU Dresden, and Paul Langerhans Institute Dresden (PLID), and his group developed a system called “Beta-bow”, which allows the history of β-cells to be traced by genetic bar-coding and multicolor imaging. The results of this study are now published in the scientific journal Nature Communications.


Zebrafish β-cells labeled using the Beta-bow system through the combinatorial expression of fluorescent proteins, allowing the developmental history of β-cells to be traced during islet growth.

© Ninov lab


Dr. Nikolay Ninov

© CRTD

Tracing the history of individual cells in the developing organism can reveal functional differences among seemingly uniform cells. This knowledge is important for defining the characteristics of highly regenerative cells in order to target them for cellular therapies, as well as to prevent the formation of unfit cells, which compromise the overall health of the organism.

The study introduced here presents a new method for tracing the history of β-cells, which perform the essential function of secreting insulin in response to glucose. The authors traced β-cells with regards to their proliferation, function and time of differentiation in the zebrafish.

The study shows that β-cells with different developmental histories co-exist together, which leads to the formation of dynamic sub-populations that differ in their potential for undergoing proliferation and performing functional tasks. The study also reveals the onset of β-cell function in zebrafish, which opens new avenues to investigate how β-cells acquire a functional state using this powerful genetic model.

Recently, the heterogeneity among β-cells has become evident, and it is believed that this heterogeneity might play a role in the progression of diabetes. “For example, even 20 years after the onset of Type 1 diabetes, some β-cells can survive in the pancreas, perhaps because these cells are different from the rest, which allows them to hide from the immune system and to escape autoimmune destruction”, Nikolay Ninov says.

The ability to directly visualize the evolution of β-cell heterogeneity in zebrafish will help to understand the dynamic regulation of β-cell sub-populations at the molecular level. This knowledge is of crucial importance for the subsequent development of effective strategies for β-cell regeneration and protection in diabetes.

“As a next step, we will use our model and cell tracing methods to understand the signals that instruct β-cells to acquire a functional state. In particular, we found that in zebrafish this process takes only a few days after the birth of the cells, whereas it is difficult to achieve the formation of functional β-cells from human stem cells in vitro. Thus, our hypothesis is that the in vivo environment in the zebrafish pancreas provides powerful signals for rapid β-cell functional maturation. We will now identify these signals, as this knowledge can help to produce functional human β-cells in vitro for transplantation purposes”, Nikolay Ninov explains.

The project, which was envisioned about 3.5 years ago, was led by CRTD Postdoc Sumeet Pal Singh. In addition, Sharan Janjuha (PhD-student, DIGS-BB) established the assay for calcium imaging. Additional researchers include collaborators from Japan (Daiichi Sankyo Co.,Ltd), the UK (Oxford University) and Germany (CRTD).

“Curiosity, and the drive to make an original contribution towards a cure for diabetes by learning more about the basic biology of β-cells” motivates Nikolay Ninov in his daily work. Since 2013 Nikolay Ninov has been a Group Leader for “β-cell biology and regeneration” at the CRTD and the Paul Langerhans Institut Dresden (PLID) of Helmholtz Zentrum München at University Hospital Dresden and Medical Faculty Carl Gustav Carus of TU Dresden - a partner of the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD). In 2008, Nikolay Ninov completed his PhD at the University of Barcelona (Spain, Parc Cientific de Barcelona). After that he worked as a Postdoc at the University of Toronto (Canada, Department of Cell and Systems Biology, 2008-2009), the University of California at San Francisco (USA) and the Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research in Bad Nauheim (Germany) (2009-2013).

Publication

Title: Different developmental histories of beta-cells generate functional and proliferative heterogeneity during islet growth

DOI: 10.1038/s41467-017-00461-3

Press Contact
Franziska Clauß, M.A.
Press Officer
Phone: +49 351 458 82065
E-Mail: franziska.clauss@tu-dresden.de

Franziska Clauß | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Further information:
http://www.crt-dresden.de

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Flow of cerebrospinal fluid regulates neural stem cell division
22.05.2018 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

nachricht Chemists at FAU successfully demonstrate imine hydrogenation with inexpensive main group metal
22.05.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

Im Focus: Computer-Designed Customized Regenerative Heart Valves

Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.

Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...

Im Focus: Light-induced superconductivity under high pressure

A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.

Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat

18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Keeping a Close Eye on Ice Loss

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

CrowdWater: An App for Flood Research

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>