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Permanent URL to this publication: http://dx.doi.org/10.5167/uzh-45651

Paulsen , K; Thiel, C; Timm, J; Schmidt, P M; Schoppmann, K; Tauber, S; Hemmersbach, R; Seibt, D; Kroll, H; Grote, K H; Zipp , F; Schneider-Stock, R; Cogoli, A; Hilliger, A; Engelmann, F; Ullrich, O (2010). Microgravity-induced alterations in signal transduction in cells of the immune system. Acta Astronautica, 67(9-10):1116-1125.

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Abstract

Since decades it is known that the activity of cells of the immune system is severely dysregulated in microgravity, however, the underlying molecular aspects have not been elucidated yet. The identification of gravity-sensitive molecular mechanisms in cells of the immune system is an important and indispensable prerequisite for the development of counteractive measures to prevent or treat disturbed immune cell function of astronauts during long-term space missions. Moreover, their sensitivity to altered gravity renders immune cells an ideal model system to understand if and how gravity on Earth is required for normal mammalian cell function and signal transduction. We investigated the effect of simulated weightlessness (2D clinostat) and of real microgravity (parabolic flights) on key signal pathways in a human monocytic and a T lymphocyte cell line. We found that cellular responses to microgravity strongly depend on the cell-type and the conditions in which the cells are subjected to microgravity. In Jurkat T cells, enhanced phosphorylation of the MAP kinases ERK-1/2, MEK and p38 and inhibition of nuclear translocation of NF-kB were the predominant responses to simulated weightlessness, in either stimulated or non-stimulated cells. In contrast, non-stimulated monocytic U937 cells responded to simulated weightlessness with enhanced overall tyrosine-phosphorylation and activation of c-jun, whereas PMA-stimulated U937 cells responded the opposite way with reduced tyrosine-phosphorylation and reduced activation of c-jun, compared with PMA-stimulated 1g controls. P53 protein was phosphorylated rapidly in microgravity. The identification of gravi-sensitive mechanisms in cells of the immune system will not only enable us to understand and prevent the negative effects of long time exposure to microgravity on Astronauts, but could also lead to novel therapeutic targets in general.

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Anatomy
DDC:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Date:2010
Deposited On:14 Feb 2011 16:41
Last Modified:27 Nov 2013 23:41
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0094-5765
Publisher DOI:10.1016/j.actaastro.2010.06.053
Citations:Web of Science®. Times Cited: 6
Google Scholar™
Scopus®. Citation Count: 7

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