Navigation Links
In fight against cancer, a closer look at nuclear blebbing
Date:2/19/2013

Misshapen cell nuclei are frequently observed in the cells of people with cancer and other diseases, but what causes the abnormality -- and why it is associated with certain disorders -- has remained unclear.

Researchers at Northwestern University have recently developed a mathematical model that sheds light on the defect by clarifying the mechanisms that cause bulges known as "blebs" in cells' nuclear membranes. The research -- a collaboration between experts at the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science and the Feinberg School of Medicine -- could be a step toward bleb prevention, which may ultimately provide potential therapies for related diseases.

A paper describing the research, titled "Mechanical Model of Blebbing in Nuclear Lamin Meshworks," was published Feb. 11 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA (PNAS).

"Changes in the shape of the nucleus are indicative of a range of pathologies, including the premature aging disorder Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome, EmeryDreifuss muscular dystrophy and some cancers," said Monica Olvera de la Cruz, the corresponding author of the paper. "Our research suggests that blebbing may be the result of an imbalance between the various proteins that constitute the nuclear lamina."

She is a Lawyer Taylor Professor, professor of materials science and engineering in the McCormick School and professor of chemistry in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.

The nucleus -- the control center of the cell, the keeper of genetic material and overseer of cell growth and reproduction -- is covered by a nuclear envelope consisting of a double membrane and an underlying structure called the nuclear lamina that surrounds the surface of the nucleus and gives it shape. In addition to its mechanical support, the lamina helps regulate cell division and organize genetic material.

In the majority of healthy cells, the nucleus appears smooth and maintains an overall spherical shape, but abnormal nuclear shapes characterized by blebs have been observed in the cells of people suffering from some forms of cancer and other diseases.

In mammals, the lamin meshworks that make up the nuclear lamina consist of mainly two types of lamin proteins, known as types A and B, which are wrapped like two nets around the nucleus. Under normal conditions, the A-type and B-type lamins co-exist throughout the sphere, creating a healthy lamina of approximately even thickness throughout.

But when one of the B-type lamins is depleted, researchers found the A-type and B-type lamins begin to segregate from one another, resulting in an uneven mesh layer with altered mechanical properties. In some regions, the lamina's fibers begin to gap and separate, giving rise to nuclear blebs, bulges in the cell's nuclear envelope.

The nuclear lamins, especially the A-type lamins, are now considered to be major building blocks of nuclear architecture and are thus involved in numerous important nuclear functions. Much of the recent information on the functions of the nuclear lamins comes from findings demonstrating that many different human diseases are caused by hundreds of mutations in the nuclear lamin A gene. Many of these diseases are accompanied by changes in nuclear shape and altered lamin organization.

"This study helps us to begin to understand how these abnormal shapes are formed," said Robert D. Goldman, the Stephen Walter Ranson Professor of Cell and Molecular Biology, chair of the department of cell and molecular biology at the Feinberg School, and one of the paper's authors. "Collaborations between physicists and cell biologists are beginning to reveal new insights into these normal and abnormal cells."

Enabling some of those new insights, the Northwestern researchers designed an energy-minimizing continuum elastic model that enabled them to produce structures with comparable shapes and patterns as those found in naturally occurring pathological nuclei.


'/>"/>

Contact: Megan Fellman
fellman@northwestern.edu
847-491-3115
Northwestern University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Research Foundation for Tick-Borne Infections Fights Lyme Disease, Babesiosis and Encephalitis with Pilot Studies
2. Combo of Avastin, second drug shows promise fighting brain cancer, Mayo Clinic finds
3. Report Calls for Better U.S. Efforts to Fight Counterfeit Drugs
4. New hope in fight against multi-resistant germs
5. WeightLossApp.com: The Skinny: Fighting Obesity in the Workplace Through an Innovative Mobile Application
6. Tiger Schulmann's MMA Student, Uriah Hall, Debuts on The Ultimate Fighter
7. Scientists Explore How Zinc Fights Off Infection
8. Electrical Brain Stimulation Plus Drug Fights Depression: Study
9. Tree-Savers™ Reports Successful Launch of Private St Beetle Lab; 100,000 Predator Beetles Now Available to Fight HWA Infestation
10. Scientists identify new strategy to fight deadly infection in cystic fibrosis
11. Bacterial supplement could help young pigs fight disease
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/21/2017)... Boca Raton, FL (PRWEB) , ... January 21, 2017 , ... ... from Germany, announced it is bringing its product to the United States as part ... perfected over the last 25 years, Alcovit aims to reduce the productions of nasty ...
(Date:1/21/2017)... Rosa, CA (PRWEB) , ... January 21, 2017 ... ... announce that Redwood Family Dermatology has recently joined their multi-specialty medical ... a full range of cosmetic services. , “We’re excited to add this excellent ...
(Date:1/20/2017)... ... 20, 2017 , ... A new partnership between Goodwill® and Roadie, Inc. aims ... need, from clothes to couches to dressers and bicycles. Roadie — the national on-the-way ... nearest Goodwill donation center through February 28th. , “January is an exciting time ...
(Date:1/20/2017)... , ... January 20, 2017 , ... Lice Troopers, the ... cases in families with school-aged children since the holiday season. , “It happens ... with their families, sharing hugs and taking photos, which is the head-to-head gateway that ...
(Date:1/20/2017)... ... January 20, 2017 , ... Vitamin ... alternative VW+ 002. The drinks have been produced in collaboration with Zlatan Ibrahimovic ... during your workout. , After a successful launch in Sweden last year, the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... BioTherapeutics Inc. ( Stealth ), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company ... additions to its senior leadership team: W. Douglas ... Daniel Geffken as interim Chief Financial Officer. In ... has been promoted to Chief Clinical Development Officer. ... Daniel to our management team, as both will be ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... , Jan. 19, 2017 Accuray Incorporated ... CyberKnife® and TomoTherapy® Systems continue to set the bar ... the highest composite overall user satisfaction rating among radiation ... Q4 2016 MD Buyline Market Intelligence Briefing™. The most ... highest composite ratings among industry peers for 11 of ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... RATON, Fla. , Jan. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... a medical device company specializing in the treatment ... such as keloids, with superficial radiation therapy, today ... and full year 2016 financial results on Thursday, February ... The Company will hold a conference call with ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: