39 research outputs found

    AT2 receptor agonist LP2 restores respiratory function in a rat model of bleomycin-induced lung remodelling

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    This study aimed to evaluate the prophylactic and therapeutic potential of angiotensin II type 2 receptor peptide agonist LP2 in bleomycin-induced airway and cardiac remodeling in rats. Male Wistar rats were intratracheally instillated with bleomycin. Animals of a prophylactic arm received LP2 from day 0 at intraperitoneal doses of 1, 3 or 10μg/kg/d, whereas animals from a therapeutic arm received this LP2 treatment from day 7. On day 28 direct lung mechanics were determined and cardiac and lung tissues were collected and (histo)morphologically assessed. Prophylactic LP2 at 1µg/kg/d with bleomycin, versus bleomycin alone, significantly improved the airway pressure responses at fixed inflation of 4ml (p&lt;0.05) and 7ml volume (p&lt;0.05), static compliance (p&lt;0.01), inspiratory capacity (p&lt;0.05), lung tolerance of increased volume (p&lt;0.0001), right to left ventricular hypertrophy (p&lt;0.05). Therapeutic regime showed a similar trend as the prophylactic arm but was less effective, mostly lacking significance. However, and importantly, therapeutic LP2 at 1µg/kg/d significantly decreased mRNA expression of collagen 1A1 (p&lt;0.01), of Connective Tissue Growth Factor 1 (p&lt;0.05) and of Tissue MetalloPeptidase inhibitor 1 (p&lt;0.05). In conclusion, a very low dose of 1µg/kg/d LP2 has capacity to counter bleomycin-induced impairment of lung functioning and consequent cardiac remodeling.</p

    High-throughput screening for substrate specificity-adapted mutants of the nisin dehydratase NisB

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    Microbial lanthipeptides are formed by a two-step enzymatic introduction of (methyl)lanthionine rings. A dehydratase catalyzes the dehydration of serine and threonine residues, yielding dehydroalanine and dehydrobutyrine, respectively. Cyclase-catalyzed coupling of the formed dehydroresidues to cysteines forms (methyl)lanthionine rings in a peptide. Lanthipeptide biosynthetic systems allow discovery of target-specific, lanthionine-stabilized therapeutic peptides. However, the substrate specificity of existing modification enzymes impose limitations on installing lanthionines in non-natural substrates. The goal of the present study was to obtain a lanthipeptide dehydratase with the capacity to dehydrate substrates that are unsuitable for the nisin dehydratase NisB. We report high-throughput screening for tailored specificity of intracellular, genetically encoded NisB dehydratases. The principle is based on the screening of bacterially displayed lanthionine-constrained streptavidin ligands, which have a much higher affinity for streptavidin than linear ligands. The designed NisC-cyclizable high-affinity ligands can be formed via mutant NisB-catalyzed dehydration but less effectively via wild-type NisB activity. In Lactococcus lactis, a cell surface display precursor was designed comprising DSHPQFC. The Asp residue preceding the serine in this sequence disfavors its dehydration by wild-type NisB. The cell surface display vector was coexpressed with a mutant NisB library and NisTC. Subsequently, mutant NisB-containing bacteria that display cyclized strep ligands on the cell surface were selected via panning rounds with streptavidin-coupled magnetic beads. In this way, a NisB variant with a tailored capacity of dehydration was obtained, which was further evaluated with respect to its capacity to dehydrate nisin mutants. These results demonstrate a powerful method for selecting lanthipeptide modification enzymes with adapted substrate specificity

    Does activation of the protective Renin-Angiotensin System have therapeutic potential in COVID-19?

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    Infection of lung cells by the corona virus results in a loss of the balance between, on the one hand, angiotensin II-mediated stimulation of the angiotensin II type 1 receptor and, on the other hand, stimulation of the angiotensin II type 2 receptor and/or the Mas receptor. The unbalanced enhanced stimulation of the angiotensin II type 1 receptor causes inflammation, edema and contributes to the pathogenesis of severe acute respiratory distress syndrome. Here we hypothesize that stable, receptor-specific agonists of the angiotensin II type 2 receptor and of the Mas receptor are molecular medicines to treat COVID-19 patients. These agonists have therapeutic potential in the acute disease but in addition may reduce COVID-19-associated long-term pulmonary dysfunction and overall end-organ damage of this disease

    Galanin 2 Receptor: A Novel Target for a Subset of Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma

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    Galanin is a 30 amino acid peptide that stimulates three subtype receptors (GAL1–3R). M89b is a lanthionine-stabilized, C-terminally truncated galanin analog that specifically stimulates GAL2R. We investigated the potential of M89b as a therapeutic for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) and assessed its safety. The anti-tumor activity of subcutaneously injected M89b on the growth of patient-derived xenografts of PDAC (PDAC–PDX) in mice was investigated. In addition, the safety of M89b was assessed in vitro using a multi-target panel to measure the off-target binding and modulation of enzyme activities. In a PDAC–PDX with a high GAL2R expression, M89b completely inhibited the growth of the tumor (p GAL2R expression, low or negligeable inhibition of tumor growth was measured, and in the PDX without GAL2R expression no influence on the tumor growth was observed. The M89b treatment of the GAL2R high-PDAC–PDX-bearing mice led to a reduction in the expression of RacGap1 (p PCNA (p MMP13 (p 2R is a safe and valuable target for treating PDACs with high GAL2R expression

    Translocation of a Thioether-Bridged Azurin Peptide Fragment via the Sec Pathway in Lactococcus lactis▿

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    This study demonstrates for the first time that a thioether-containing peptide, an azurin fragment, can be translocated via the Sec pathway. This methyl-lanthionine was introduced by the nisin modification enzymes. The Sec pathway can therefore be a successful alternative for those cyclized peptides that are inefficiently transported via NisT