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Publications - Stress and Develop Biology

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Strehmel, C.; Zhang, Z.; Strehmel, N.; Lensen, M. Cell phenotypic changes of mouse connective tissue fibroblasts (L-929) to poly(ethylene glycol)-based gels Biomaterials Sci 1, 850–859, (2013) DOI: 10.1039/C3BM60055F

Cellular responses to various gels fabricated by photoinitiated crosslinking using acrylated linear and multi-arm poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-based and poly(propylene glycol)-b-poly(ethylene glycol) precursors were investigated. While no protein adsorption and cell adhesion were observed on the hydrophilic PEG-based gels, protein adsorption and cell adhesion did occur on the more hydrophobic gel generated from the block copolymer precursor. Murine fibroblast viability on the poly(ethylene glycol)-based gels was studied in the course of 72 h and the results indicated no cytotoxicity. In a systematic study, extra- and intracellular metabolites of the murine fibroblasts cultured on these PEG-based gels were examined by GC-MS. Distinct intra- and extracellular changes in primary metabolism, namely amino acid metabolism, glycolysis and fatty acid metabolism, were observed. Cells cultured on the polymeric gels induced more intense intracellular changes in the metabolite profile by means of higher metabolite intensities with time in comparison to cells cultured on the reference substrate (tissue culture polystyrene). In contrast, extracellular changes of metabolite intensities were comparable.

Brunner, F.; Rosahl, S.; Lee, J.; Rudd, J.J.; Geiler, C.; Kauppinen, S.; Rasmussen, G.; Scheel, D.; Nürnberger, T. Pep-13, a plant defense-inducing pathogen-associated pattern from <em>Phytophthora transglutaminases</em> EMBO J 21, 6681-6688, (2002)

Innate immunity, an ancient form of defense against microbial infection, is well described for animals and is also suggested to be important for plants. Discrimination from self is achieved through receptors that recognize pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) not found in the host. PAMPs are evolutionarily conserved structures which are functionally important and, thus, not subject to frequent mutation. Here we report that the previously described peptide elicitor of defense responses in parsley, Pep-13, constitutes a surface-exposed fragment within a novel calcium-dependent cell wall transglutaminase (TGase) from Phytophthora sojae. TGase transcripts and TGase activity are detectable in all Phytophthora species analyzed, among which are some of the most destructive plant pathogens. Mutational analysis within Pep-13 identified the same amino acids indispensable for both TGase and defense-eliciting activity. Pep-13, conserved among Phytophthora TGases, activates defense in parsley and potato, suggesting its function as a genus-specific recognition determinant for the activation of plant defense in host and non-host plants. In summary, plants may recognize PAMPs with characteristics resembling those known to trigger innate immune responses in animals.
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