Rxivist combines preprints from bioRxiv with data from Twitter to help you find the papers being discussed in your field. Currently indexing 62,303 bioRxiv papers from 276,577 authors.
Most downloaded bioRxiv papers, since beginning of last month
in category cell biology
2,328 results found. For more information, click each entry to expand.
841 downloads cell biology
Aging of the mammary gland is closely associated with increased susceptibility to diseases such as cancer, but there have been limited systematic studies of aging-induced alterations within this organ. We performed high-throughput single-cell RNA-sequencing (scRNA-seq) profiling of mammary tissues from young and old nulliparous mice, including both epithelial and stromal cell types. Our analysis identified altered proportions and distinct gene expression patterns in numerous cell populations as a consequence of the aging process, independent of parity and lactation. In addition, we detected a subset of luminal cells that express both hormone-sensing and alveolar markers and decrease in relative abundance with age. These data provide a high-resolution landscape of aging mammary tissues, with potential implications for normal tissue functions and cancer predisposition.
616 downloads cell biology
The mammary epithelial cell (MEC) system is a bi-layered ductal epithelial network consisting of luminal and basal cells, which is maintained by a lineage of stem and progenitor cell populations. Here, we used integrated single-cell transcriptomics and chromatin accessibility analysis to reconstruct the cell types of the mouse MEC system and their underlying gene regulatory features in an unbiased manner. We define previously unrealized differentiation states within the secretory type of luminal cells, which can be divided into distinct clusters of progenitor and mature secretory cells. By integrating single-cell transcriptomics and chromatin accessibility landscapes, we identified novel cis- and trans-regulatory elements that are differentially activated in the specific epithelial cell types and our newly defined luminal differentiation states. Our work provides an unprecedented resource to reveal novel cis/trans regulatory elements associated with MEC identity and differentiation that will serve as a valuable reference to determine how the chromatin accessibility landscape changes during breast cancer.
615 downloads cell biology
At the end of mitosis, eukaryotic cells must segregate both copies of their replicated genome into two new nuclear compartments. They do this either by first dismantling and later reassembling the nuclear envelope in a so-called open mitosis, or by reshaping an intact nucleus and then dividing into two in a closed mitosis. However, while mitosis has been studied in a wide variety of eukaryotes for over a century, it is not known how the double membrane of the nuclear envelope is split into two at the end of a closed mitosis without compromising the impermeability of the nuclear compartment. In studying this problem in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe , a classical model for closed mitosis, we use genetics, live cell imaging and electron tomography to show that nuclear fission is achieved via local disassembly of the nuclear envelope (NE) within the narrow bridge that links segregating daughter nuclei. In doing so, we identify a novel inner NE-localised protein Les1 that restricts the process of local NE breakdown (local NEB) to the bridge midzone and prevents the leakage of material from daughter nuclei. The mechanics of local NEB in a closed mitosis closely mirror those of NEB in open mitosis, revealing an unexpectedly deep conservation of nuclear remodelling mechanisms across diverse eukaryotes.
580 downloads cell biology
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) can differentiate into all hematopoietic lineages to support hematopoiesis. Cells from the myeloid and lymphoid lineages fulfill distinct functions with specific shapes and intra-cellular architectures. The role of cytokines in the regulation of HSC differentiation has been intensively studied but our understanding of the potential contribution of inner cell architecture is relatively poor. Here we show that large invaginations are generated by microtubule constraints on the swelling nucleus of human HSCs during early commitment toward the myeloid lineage. These invaginations are associated with chromatin reorganization, local loss of H3K9 trimethylation and changes in expression of specific hematopoietic genes. This establishes the role of microtubules in defining the unique lobulated nuclear shape observed in myeloid progenitor cells and suggests that this shape is important to establish the gene expression profile specific to this hematopoietic lineage. It opens new perspectives on the implications of microtubule-generated forces, in the early specification of the myeloid lineage.
571 downloads cell biology
Aging is characterized by a progressive loss of physiological integrity, leading to impaired function and increased vulnerability to death. Despite rapid advances over recent years, many of the molecular and cellular processes which underlie progressive loss of healthy physiology are poorly understood. To gain a better insight into these processes we have created a single cell transcriptomic atlas across the life span of Mus musculus which includes data from 18 tissues and organs. We discovered cell-specific changes occurring across multiple cell types and organs, as well as age related changes in the cellular composition of different organs. Using single-cell transcriptomic data we were able to assess cell type specific manifestations of different hallmarks of aging, such as senescence, changes in the activity of metabolic pathways, depletion of stem-cell populations, genomic instability and the role of inflammation as well as other changes in the organism's immune system. This Tabula Muris Senis provides a wealth of new molecular information about how the most significant hallmarks of aging are reflected in a broad range of tissues and cell types.
478 downloads cell biology
Gordana Wutz, Brian Tyler Glenn St. Hilaire, Rene Ladurner, Roman Stocsits, Kota Nagasaka, Benoit Pignard, Adrian Sanborn, Wen Tang, Csilla Varnai, Miroslav Ivanov, Stefan Schoenfelder, Petra van der Lelij, Xingfan Huang, Gerhard Duernberger, Elisabeth Roitinger, Karl Mechtler, Iain Finley Davidson, Peter Fraser, Erez Lieberman Aiden, Jan-Michael Peters
Eukaryotic genomes are folded into loops. It is thought that these are formed by cohesin complexes via extrusion, either until loop expansion is arrested by CTCF or until cohesin is removed from DNA by WAPL. Although WAPL limits cohesin chromatin residence time to minutes, it has been reported that some loops exist for hours. How these loops can persist is unknown. We show that during G1-phase, mammalian cells contain acetylated cohesinSTAG1 which binds chromatin for hours, whereas cohesinSTAG2 binds chromatin for minutes. Our results indicate that CTCF and the acetyltransferase ESCO1 protect a subset of cohesinSTAG1 complexes from WAPL, thereby enable formation of long and presumably long-lived loops, and that ESCO1, like CTCF, contributes to boundary formation in chromatin looping. Our data are consistent with a model of nested loop extrusion, in which acetylated cohesinSTAG1 forms stable loops between CTCF sites, demarcating the boundaries of more transient cohesinSTAG2 extrusion activity.
405 downloads cell biology
Small molecule inhibitors provide a versatile method for studies in microtubule cytoskeleton research, since tubulin is not readily amenable to functional control using genetics. However, traditional chemical inhibitors do not allow spatiotemporally precise applications on the length and time scales appropriate for selectively modulating microtubule-dependent processes. We have synthesised a panel of taxane-based light-responsive microtubule stabilisers, whose tubulin hyperpolymerisation activity can be induced by photoisomerisation to their thermodynamically metastable state. These reagents can be isomerised in live cells, optically controlling microtubule network integrity, cell cycle repartition, and cell survival, and offering biological response on the timescale of seconds and spatial precision to the level of individual cells. These azobenzene-based microtubule stabilisers offer the possibility of noninvasive, highly spatiotemporally precise modulation of the microtubule cytoskeleton in live cells, and can prove powerful reagents for studies of intracellular transport, cell motility, and neurodegeneration.
400 downloads cell biology
Leilei Zhong, Lutian Yao, Robert J. Tower, Yulong Wei, Zhen Miao, Jihwan Park, Rojesh Shrestha, Luqiang Wang, Wei Yu, Nicholas Holdreith, Yejia Zhang, Wei Tong, Yanqing Gong, Fanxin Long, Jaimo Ahn, Patrick Seale, Katalin Susztak, Mingyao Li, Chider Chen, Ling Qin
Bone marrow mesenchymal lineage cells are a heterogeneous cell population involved in bone homeostasis and diseases such as osteoporosis. While it is long postulated that they originate from mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), the true identity of MSCs and their in vivo bifurcated differentiation routes into osteoblasts and adipocytes remain poorly understood. Here, by employing single cell transcriptome analysis, we identified MSCs and delineated their bi-lineage differentiation paths in young, adult and aging mice. Among several newly discovered mesenchymal subpopulations, one is a distinct population of adipose-lineage cells that we named marrow environment regulating adipose cells (MERAs). MERAs are non-proliferative, post-progenitor cells that express many mature adipocyte markers but are devoid of lipid droplets. They are abundant in the bone marrow of young mice, acting as pericytes and stromal cells that form numerous connections among themselves and with other cells inside bone, including endothelial cells. Genetic ablation of MERAs disrupts marrow vessel structure, promotes de novo bone formation. Taken together, MERAs represent a unique population of adipose lineage cells that exist only in the bone marrow with critical roles in regulating bone and vessel homeostasis.
387 downloads cell biology
Cell-cell communication mediated by receptor-ligand complexes is crucial for coordinating diverse biological processes, such as development, differentiation and responses to infection. In order to understand how the context-dependent crosstalk of different cell types enables physiological processes to proceed, we developed CellPhoneDB, a novel repository of ligands, receptors and their interactions. Our repository takes into account the subunit architecture of both ligands and receptors, representing heteromeric complexes accurately. We integrated our resource with a statistical framework that predicts enriched cellular interactions between two cell types from single-cell transcriptomics data. Here, we outline the structure and content of our repository, the procedures for inferring cell-cell communication networks from scRNA-seq data and present a practical step-by-step guide to help implement the protocol. CellPhoneDB v2.0 is a novel version of our resource that incorporates additional functionalities to allow users to introduce new interacting molecules and reduce the time and resources needed to interrogate large datasets. CellPhoneDB v2.0 is publicly available at https://github.com/Teichlab/cellphonedb and as a user-friendly web interface at http://www.cellphonedb.org/. In our protocol, we demonstrate how to reveal meaningful biological discoveries from CellPhoneDB v2.0 using published data sets.
338 downloads cell biology
Senescence is a stable growth arrest that impairs the replication of damaged, old or preneoplastic cells, therefore contributing to tissue homeostasis. Senescent cells accumulate during ageing and are associated with diseases, such as cancer, fibrosis and many age-related pathologies. Recent evidence suggests that the selective elimination of senescent cells can be effective on the treatment of many of these senescence-associated diseases. A universal characteristic of senescent cells is that they display elevated activity of the lysosomal b-galactosidase this has been exploited as a marker for senescence (senescence-associated b-galactosidase activity). Consequently, we hypothesised that galactose-modified cytotoxic prodrugs will be preferentially processed by senescent cells, resulting in their selective killing. Here, we show that different galactose-modified duocarmycin (GMD) derivatives preferentially kill senescent cells. GMD prodrugs induce selective apoptosis of senescent cells in a lysosomal b-galactosidase (GLB1)-dependent manner. GMD prodrugs can eliminate a broad range of senescent cells in culture, and treatment with a GMD prodrug enhances the elimination of bystander senescent cells that accumulate upon whole body irradiation or doxorubicin treatment of mice. Moreover, taking advantage of a mouse model of human adamantinomatous craniopharyngioma (ACP), we show that treatment with a GMD pro-drug result selectively reduced the number of b-catenin- positive preneoplastic senescent cells, what could have therapeutic implications. In summary, the above results show that galactose-modified duocarmycin prodrugs behave as senolytics, suggesting that they could be used to treat a wide range of senescence-related pathologies.
335 downloads cell biology
Young mammals possess a limited regenerative capacity in tissues such as the liver, heart and limbs, but which is quickly lost upon maturation or transition to adulthood. Chronic cellular senescence is a known mediator of decreased tissue function in aging and disease. Here we investigated whether senescence plays a role in the progressive loss of liver regenerative capacity that develops in young adult mice. We find that following partial hepatectomy, the senescence markers p21, p16Ink4a and p19Arf become dynamically expressed at an age when regenerative capacity decreases. In addition, we demonstrate that treatment with a senescence-inhibiting drug improves regenerative capacity, through targeting of aberrant p21 expression. Surprisingly, we also find that the senescence marker p16Ink4a is expressed in a different cell-population to p21, and is unaffected by senescence targeting. This work suggests that senescence may initially develop as a heterogeneous cellular response, and that treatment with senolytic drugs may aid in promoting organ regeneration.
316 downloads cell biology
Macrophages must engulf dead cells, debris, and pathogens, while selecting against healthy cells to prevent autoimmunity. Healthy cells express CD47 on their surface, which activates the SIRPA receptor on macrophages to suppress engulfment. Cancer cells overexpress CD47 to evade clearance by the innate immune system, making the CD47-SIRPA signaling axis an appealing therapeutic target. However, the mechanism by which CD47-SIRPA inhibits engulfment remains poorly understood. Here, we dissect SIRPA signaling using a reconstituted target with varying concentrations of activating and inhibitor ligands. We find that SIRPA is excluded from the phagocytic synapse between the macrophage and its target unless CD47 is present. Artificially directing SIRPA to the kinase-rich synapse in the absence of CD47 activates SIRPA and suppresses engulfment, indicating that the localization of the receptor is critical for inhibitory signaling. CD47-SIRPA inhibits integrin activation in the macrophage, reducing macrophage-target contact and suppressing phagocytosis. Chemical activation of integrins can override this effect and drive engulfment of CD47-positive targets, including cancer cells. These results suggest new strategies for overcoming CD47-SIRPA inhibition of phagocytosis with potential applications in cancer immunotherapy.
311 downloads cell biology
Organoids are biomimetic 3D models of healthy and diseased tissue. Despite their widespread adoption, methods to analyse cell-type specific signalling networks in organoids are absent. Here we report multiplexed single-cell analysis of post-translational modification (PTM) signalling networks in organoids by mass cytometry. Simultaneous analysis of 28 PTMs in >1 million single-organoid cells reveals cell-type and cell-state specific signalling networks in stem, Paneth, enteroendocrine, goblet, tuft cells, and enterocytes during intestinal organoid development. We demonstrate that Thiol-reactive Organoid Barcoding in situ (TOB is ) enables high-throughput multiplexed organoid signalling analysis in a single-tube − opening this technology to single-cell organoid screening. Comparison of colorectal cancer (CRC) oncogenic mutations ( Apc , Kras , and Trp53 ) and microenvironmental cues (fibroblasts and macrophages) revealed CRC driver-mutations mimic signalling normally provided by stromal cells. These results demonstrate mass cytometry is a powerful multiplexed single-cell technology for studying cell-specific signalling in organoid models of healthy and cancerous tissue.
304 downloads cell biology
Low-complexity protein domains promote the formation of various biomolecular condensates. However, in many cases, the precise sequence features governing condensate formation and identity remain unclear. Here, we investigate the role of intrinsically disordered mixed-charge domains (MCDs) in nuclear speckle condensation. Proteins composed exclusively of arginine/aspartic-acid dipeptide repeats undergo length-dependent condensation and speckle incorporation. Substituting arginine with lysine in synthetic and natural speckle-associated MCDs abolishes these activities, identifying a key role for multivalent contacts through arginine's guanidinium ion. MCDs can synergise with a speckle-associated RNA recognition motif to promote speckle specificity and residence. MCD behaviour is tuneable through net-charge: increasing negative charge abolishes condensation and speckle incorporation. By contrast, increasing positive charge through arginine leads to enhanced condensation, speckle enlargement, decreased splicing factor mobility, and defective mRNA export. Together, these results identify key sequence determinants of MCD-promoted speckle condensation, and link the speckle's dynamic material properties with function in mRNA processing.
302 downloads cell biology
Andrew Keniry, Natasha Jansz, Linden J. Gearing, Iromi Wanigasuriya, Joseph Chen, Christian M Nefzger, Peter F. Hickey, Quentin Gouil, Joy Liu, Kelsey Breslin, Megan Iminitoff, Tamara Beck, Andres Tapia del Fierro, Sarah A Kinkel, Phillippa C Taberlay, Tracy Willson, Miha Pakusch, Matthew E Ritchie, Douglas J Hilton, Jose Maria Polo, Marnie E. Blewitt
Although female pluripotency significantly differs to male, complications with in vitro culture of female embryonic stem cells (ESC) have severely limited the use and study of these cells. We report a replenishable female ESC system, Xmas, that has enabled us to optimise a protocol for preserving the XX karyotype. Our protocol also improves male ESC fitness. We utilised our Xmas ESC system to screen for regulators of the female-specific process of X chromosome inactivation, revealing chromatin remodellers Smarcc1 and Smarca4 as key regulators of establishment of X inactivation. The remodellers create a nucleosome depleted region at gene promotors on the inactive X during exit from pluripotency, without which gene silencing fails. Our female ESC system provides a tractable model for XX ESC culture that will expedite study of female pluripotency and has enabled us to discover new features of the female-specific process of X inactivation.
292 downloads cell biology
Celine Labouesse, Chibeza C. Agley, Bao Xiu Tan, Moritz Hofer, Alex Winkel, Giuliano G Stirparo, Hannah T. Stuart, Christophe M Verstreken, William Mansfield, Paul Bertone, Kristian Franze, Jose C. R. Silva, Kevin J. Chalut
Studies of mechanical signalling are typically performed by comparing cells cultured on soft and stiff hydrogel-based substrates. However, it is challenging to independently and robustly control both substrate stiffness and tethering of extracellular matrix (ECM) to substrates, making ECM tethering a potentially confounding variable in mechanical signalling investigations. Moreover, poor ECM tethering can lead to weak cell attachment. To address this, we developed StemBond hydrogels, a hydrogel formulation in which ECM tethering is stable and can be varied independently of stiffness. We show that soft StemBond hydrogels provide an optimal format for culturing embryonic stem (ES) cells. We find that soft StemBond substrates improve the homogeneity of ES cell populations, boost their self-renewal, and increase the efficiency of cellular reprogramming. Our findings underline how soft microenvironments impact mechanosensitive signalling pathways regulating self-renewal and differentiation, indicating that optimising the complete mechanical microenvironment will offer greater control over stem cell fate specification.
277 downloads cell biology
Membrane function is fundamental to life. Each species explores membrane lipid diversity within a genetically predefined range of possibilities. How membrane lipid composition in turn defines the functional space available for evolution of membrane-centered processes remains largely unknown. We address this fundamental question using related fission yeasts Schizosaccharomyces pombe and Schizosaccharomyces japonicus. We show that unlike S. pombe that generates membranes where both glycerophospholipid acyl tails are predominantly 16-18 carbons long, S. japonicus synthesizes unusual asymmetrical glycerophospholipids where the tails differ in length by 6-8 carbons. This results in stiffer bilayers with distinct lipid packing properties. Retroengineered S. pombe synthesizing the S. japonicus-type phospholipids exhibits unfolded protein response and downregulates secretion. Importantly, our protein sequence comparisons and domain swap experiments indicate that transmembrane helices co-evolve with membranes, suggesting that, on the evolutionary scale, changes in membrane lipid composition may necessitate extensive adaptation of the membrane-associated proteome.
276 downloads cell biology
Brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMECs) possess unique properties underlying the blood-brain-barrier (BBB), which are crucial for homeostatic brain functions and interactions with the immune system. Modulation of BBB function is essential for treatment of neurological diseases and effective tumor targeting. Studies to-date have been hampered by the lack of physiological models using cultivated human BMECs that sustain BBB properties. Recently, differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) into cells with BBB-like properties has been reported, providing a robust in vitro model for drug screening and mechanistic understanding of neurological diseases. However, the precise identity of these iBMECs remains unclear. Employing single-cell RNA sequencing, bioinformatic analysis and immunofluorescence for several pathways, transcription factors (TFs), and surface markers, we examined the molecular and functional properties of iBMECs differentiated either in the absence or presence of retinoic acid. We found that iBMECs lack both endothelial-lineage genes and ETS TFs that are essential for the establishment and maintenance of EC identity. Moreover, iBMECs fail to respond to angiogenic stimuli and form lumenized vessels in vivo. We demonstrate that human iBMECs are not barrier-forming ECs but rather EpCAM+ neuroectodermal epithelial cells (NE-EpiCs) that form tight junctions resembling those present in BBB-forming BMECs. Finally, overexpression of ETS TFs (ETV2, FLI1, and ERG) reprograms NE-EpiCs to become more like the BBB-forming ECs. Thus, although directed differentiation of human iBMECs primarily gives rise to epithelial cells, overexpression of several ETS TFs can divert them toward a vascular BBB in vitro.
273 downloads cell biology
Ruilin Tian, Mariam A Gachechiladze, Connor H Ludwig, Matthew T. Laurie, Jason Y Hong, Diane Nathaniel, Anika V Prabhu, Michael S Fernandopulle, Rajan Patel, Mehrnoosh Abshari, Michael E Ward, Martin Kampmann
CRISPR/Cas9-based functional genomics have transformed our ability to elucidate mammalian cell biology. However, most previous CRISPR-based screens were conducted in cancer cell lines, rather than healthy, differentiated cells. Here, we describe a CRISPR interference (CRISPRi)-based platform for genetic screens in human neurons derived from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). We demonstrate robust and durable knockdown of endogenous genes in such neurons, and present results from three complementary genetic screens. First, a survival-based screen revealed neuron-specific essential genes and genes that improved neuronal survival upon knockdown. Second, a screen with a single-cell transcriptomic readout uncovered several examples of genes whose knockdown had strikingly cell-type specific consequences. Third, a longitudinal imaging screen detected distinct consequences of gene knockdown on neuronal morphology. Our results highlight the power of unbiased genetic screens in iPSC-derived differentiated cell types and provide a platform for systematic interrogation of normal and disease states of neurons.
270 downloads cell biology
Skin homeostasis is orchestrated by dozens of cell types that together direct stem cell renewal, lineage commitment and differentiation. However, a systematic molecular atlas of full-thickness skin is lacking. Here, we used single-cell RNA-sequencing and mRNA-FISH to determine gene-expression identity and spatial location of skin cells during hair growth and rest. We defined 55 cell populations and made striking discoveries about the outer root sheath (ORS) and inner hair follicle layers that together coordinate hair production. The ORS is composed of two distinct cell types, companion layer cells resemble ORS and not inner layer cells, and we identified an asymmetric inner-layer structure with ORS cell identity. Moreover, the inner layers branch from transcriptionally uncommitted progenitors, and each lineage differentiation passes through an intermediate state. Altogether, we generated a comprehensive atlas with molecular and spatial information on epithelial and stromal cells, including fibroblasts, vascular and immune cells, that will spur new discoveries in skin biology.
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