Nav: Home

Researchers identify protein essential for healthy gut cell development

February 07, 2017

Scientists have uncovered key processes in the healthy development of cells which line the human gut, furthering their understanding about the development of cancer.

A University of East Anglia (UEA) study, published today in the journal Open Biology, shows that a protein called ninein is essential for normal tissue development in the gut.

The research aimed to unravel some of the poorly-understood mechanisms involved in rearranging the internal 'skeleton' - cytoskeleton - in cells that are undergoing a shape change during normal development.

Using 'mini-guts' created in the lab, they studied the tubular filaments which are part of the cytoskeleton called microtubules, and their dramatic rearrangements during the formation of certain types of cells found for example in the gut.

Dr Mette Mogensen from UEA's School of Biology said: "Formation of columnar epithelial cells like those lining the gut involves reorganisation of the microtubules, as well as the assembly of new Microtubule Organising Centres (MTOCs) which anchor one end of the microtubules to cell surfaces.

"We found that this process can only happen correctly when the protein ninein is present. We also found that the microtubule-associated protein CLIP-170 is needed for the relocation of ninein to the new MTOCs.

"The correct organisation of microtubules in columnar gut cells leads to the formation of a transcellular array. As well as influencing cell shape, microtubules form tracks for the transport of vesicles and molecules within cells, which enables nutrient uptake.

"Loss of this transcellular microtubule array leads to loss of tissue architecture, function and ultimately cancer, so formation of these new MTOCs is critical."

Researchers used 'mini-guts' during the study, generated from stem cells that are isolated from gut tissue and grown in a special medium. They formed structures in culture that mimic normal gut including columnar cells with transcellular microtubule arrays and new MTOCs.

The research was funded by the BBSRC, Anatomical Society and BigC Appeal.

'Ninein is essential for apico-basal microtubule formation and CLIP-170 facilitates its redeployment to non-centrosomal microtubule organizing centres' is published in the journal Open Biology.
-end-


University of East Anglia

Related Cancer Articles:

Stress in cervical cancer patients associated with higher risk of cancer-specific mortality
Psychological stress was associated with a higher risk of cancer-specific mortality in women diagnosed with cervical cancer.
Cancer-sniffing dogs 97% accurate in identifying lung cancer, according to study in JAOA
The next step will be to further fractionate the samples based on chemical and physical properties, presenting them back to the dogs until the specific biomarkers for each cancer are identified.
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers identify one way T cell function may fail in cancer
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers have discovered a mechanism by which one type of immune cell, CD8+ T cells, can become dysfunctional, impeding its ability to seek and kill cancer cells.
More cancer survivors, fewer cancer specialists point to challenge in meeting care needs
An aging population, a growing number of cancer survivors, and a projected shortage of cancer care providers will result in a challenge in delivering the care for cancer survivors in the United States if systemic changes are not made.
New cancer vaccine platform a potential tool for efficacious targeted cancer therapy
Researchers at the University of Helsinki have discovered a solution in the form of a cancer vaccine platform for improving the efficacy of oncolytic viruses used in cancer treatment.
American Cancer Society outlines blueprint for cancer control in the 21st century
The American Cancer Society is outlining its vision for cancer control in the decades ahead in a series of articles that forms the basis of a national cancer control plan.
Oncotarget: Cancer pioneer employs physics to approach cancer in last research article
In the cover article of Tuesday's issue of Oncotarget, James Frost, MD, PhD, Kenneth Pienta, MD, and the late Donald Coffey, Ph.D., use a theory of physical and biophysical symmetry to derive a new conceptualization of cancer.
Health indicators for newborns of breast cancer survivors may vary by cancer type
In a study published in the International Journal of Cancer, researchers from the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center analyzed health indicators for children born to young breast cancer survivors in North Carolina.
Few women with history of breast cancer and ovarian cancer take a recommended genetic test
More than 80 percent of women living with a history of breast or ovarian cancer at high-risk of having a gene mutation have never taken the test that can detect it.
Radiotherapy for invasive breast cancer increases the risk of second primary lung cancer
East Asian female breast cancer patients receiving radiotherapy have a higher risk of developing second primary lung cancer.
More Cancer News and Cancer Current Events

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2019.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Risk
Why do we revere risk-takers, even when their actions terrify us? Why are some better at taking risks than others? This hour, TED speakers explore the alluring, dangerous, and calculated sides of risk. Guests include professional rock climber Alex Honnold, economist Mariana Mazzucato, psychology researcher Kashfia Rahman, structural engineer and bridge designer Ian Firth, and risk intelligence expert Dylan Evans.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#540 Specialize? Or Generalize?
Ever been called a "jack of all trades, master of none"? The world loves to elevate specialists, people who drill deep into a single topic. Those people are great. But there's a place for generalists too, argues David Epstein. Jacks of all trades are often more successful than specialists. And he's got science to back it up. We talk with Epstein about his latest book, "Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World".
Now Playing: Radiolab

Dolly Parton's America: Neon Moss
Today on Radiolab, we're bringing you the fourth episode of Jad's special series, Dolly Parton's America. In this episode, Jad goes back up the mountain to visit Dolly's actual Tennessee mountain home, where she tells stories about her first trips out of the holler. Back on the mountaintop, standing under the rain by the Little Pigeon River, the trip triggers memories of Jad's first visit to his father's childhood home, and opens the gateway to dizzying stories of music and migration. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.