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JCI early table of contents for July 8, 2013

Immune cells play a role in early pregnancy

Macrophages are white blood cells that help prevent and alert the immune system to the threat of a pathogenic infection. Interestingly, macrophages are present in the uterus and ovaries at the time of conception. In this issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Sarah Robertson and colleagues at the University of Adelaide investigated the role of macrophages in early pregnancy. The team utilized a mouse model in which macrophages could be depleted immediately after embryo implantation. They found that without macrophages, embryos were unable to implant in the uterus. The failure to implant was thought to be caused by reduced levels of certain hormones, such as progesterone and vascular endothelial growth factors. Pregnancy could be completely restored by either the addition of macrophages or through administration of progesterone. These findings shed light on a new function of macrophages, as well as a potentially correctable cause of infertility.

Macrophages regulate corpus luteum development during embryo implantation in mice

Sarah Robertson
The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, UNK, AUS
Phone: +618 8303 4094; Fax: +618 8303 4099; E-mail:

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Removal of tumor-associated immune cell protein decreases tumor progression

The number of tumor-associated immune cells is correlated with poor prognosis in cancer patients. Reducing these cells in mouse models of breast cancer reduces tumor metastasis, indicating that tumor-immune interactions are critical for cancer progression. In this issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Shelley Earp and colleagues at the University of North Carolina a Chapel Hill demonstrate that removal of the protein MerTK from immune cells decreased tumor growth in mouse models of breast cancer, melanoma, and colon cancer. Loss of MerTK reduced the release of molecules associated with inflammation. These findings suggest that drugs that inhibit MerTK may stimulate anti-tumor responses and could potentially have clinical benefit.

MerTK inhibition in tumor leukocytes decreases tumor growth and metastasis

Shelton Earp
UNC Lineberger Comp Cancer Center, Chapel Hill, NC, USA
Phone: 919-966-2335; Fax: 919-966-3015; E-mail:

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TITLE: LXRβ/estrogen receptor-α signaling in lipid rafts preserves endothelial integrity

AUTHOR CONTACT: Michihisa Umetani
The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, USA
Phone: 214-648-9180; Fax: 214-648-2096; E-mail:

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TITLE: Metastasis-associated PRL-3 induces EGFR activation and addiction in cancer cells

AUTHOR CONTACT: Abdul Qader Omer Al-Aidaroos
A*STAR, Singapore, UNK, SGP
Phone: 65-6586-9883; E-mail:

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TITLE: Collagen VII plays a dual role in wound healing

AUTHOR CONTACT: Alexander Nystrom
Albert-Ludwigs University of Freiburg, Freiburg, UNK, DEU
Phone: +49 761 270 67850; E-mail:

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TITLE: FGFR2 signaling underlies p63 oncogenic function in squamous cell carcinoma

Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, MA, USA
Phone: (617)726-4315; Fax: (617)726-8623; E-mail:

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TITLE: ARHGDIA mutations cause nephrotic syndrome via defective RHO GTPase signaling

AUTHOR CONTACT: Friedhelm Hildebrandt
HHMI/University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
Phone: 734-615-7285; Fax: 1-734-615 1386; E-mail:

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Contact: Corinne Williams
Journal of Clinical Investigation

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