In the absence of ERK1, ERK2 shows increased activity and it promotes both normal and Ras-dependent cell proliferation. In contrast, increased levels of ERK1 in cells significantly slow down their proliferation rate, especially when Ras oncoproteins are activated. These findings disprove the assumption that ERK1 and ERK2 have the same function and are fully interchangeable. This suggests that the mechanism controlling cell proliferation and malignancy is more complex than previously thought.
Chiara Vantaggiato, Ivan Formentini and colleagues in Riccardo Brambilla’s group, from the San Raffaele Scientific Institute in Milan, Italy, used gene targeting and RNA interference (RNAi) techniques to inhibit the MAP kinases ERK1 and ERK2 in mouse cells. Their results show that inhibiting ERK1 enhances ERK2 activity and promotes cell proliferation. In contrast, the knockdown of ERK2 almost completely abolishes cell proliferation. Mouse tumour cells expressing ERK1, but not ERK2, to higher levels than normally seen in tumour cells, grow into very small tumours when transplanted into live mice. Cells expressing only the protein Ras grow into much larger tumours and overexpressing ERK2 doesn’t affect the size of the tumours.
The authors propose that ERK1 and ERK2 are in competition to bind to other regulatory molecules in the signalling pathway. Their activities and expression levels must be finely tuned to ensure normal cell proliferation.
Juliette Savin | alfa
Water forms 'spine of hydration' around DNA, group finds
26.05.2017 | Cornell University
How herpesviruses win the footrace against the immune system
26.05.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung
Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.
Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....
Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.
The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....
An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.
We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...
Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.
Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...
An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...
24.05.2017 | Event News
23.05.2017 | Event News
22.05.2017 | Event News
26.05.2017 | Life Sciences
26.05.2017 | Life Sciences
26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy