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      Neutrophils: Molecules, Functions and Pathophysiological Aspects

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          Rho GTPases Control Polarity, Protrusion, and Adhesion during Cell Movement

          Cell movement is essential during embryogenesis to establish tissue patterns and to drive morphogenetic pathways and in the adult for tissue repair and to direct cells to sites of infection. Animal cells move by crawling and the driving force is derived primarily from the coordinated assembly and disassembly of actin filaments. The small GTPases, Rho, Rac, and Cdc42, regulate the organization of actin filaments and we have analyzed their contributions to the movement of primary embryo fibroblasts in an in vitro wound healing assay. Rac is essential for the protrusion of lamellipodia and for forward movement. Cdc42 is required to maintain cell polarity, which includes the localization of lamellipodial activity to the leading edge and the reorientation of the Golgi apparatus in the direction of movement. Rho is required to maintain cell adhesion during movement, but stress fibers and focal adhesions are not required. Finally, Ras regulates focal adhesion and stress fiber turnover and this is essential for cell movement. We conclude that the signal transduction pathways controlled by the four small GTPases, Rho, Rac, Cdc42, and Ras, cooperate to promote cell movement.
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            Mouse model of X-linked chronic granulomatous disease, an inherited defect in phagocyte superoxide production.

            Chronic granulomatous disease (CGD) is a recessive disorder characterized by a defective phagocyte respiratory burst oxidase, life-threatening pyogenic infections and inflammatory granulomas. Gene targeting was used to generate mice with a null allele of the gene involved in X-linked CGD, which encodes the 91 kD subunit of the oxidase cytochrome b. Affected hemizygous male mice lacked phagocyte superoxide production, manifested an increased susceptibility to infection with Staphylococcus aureus and Aspergillus fumigatus and had an altered inflammatory response in thioglycollate peritonitis. This animal model should aid in developing new treatments for CGD and in evaluating the role of phagocyte-derived oxidants in inflammation.
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              Mice lacking neutrophil elastase reveal impaired host defense against gram negative bacterial sepsis.

              Neutrophil elastase (NE) is a potent serine proteinase whose expression is limited to a narrow window during myeloid development. In neutrophils, NE is stored in azurophil granules along with other serine proteinases (cathepsin G, proteinase 3 and azurocidin) at concentrations exceeding 5 mM. As a result of its capacity to efficiently degrade extracellular matrix, NE has been implicated in a variety of destructive diseases. Indeed, while much interest has focused on the pathologic effects of this enzyme, little is known regarding its normal physiologic function(s). Because previous in vitro data have shown that NE exhibits antibacterial activity, we investigated the role of NE in host defense against bacteria. Generating strains of mice deficient in NE (NE-/-) by targeted mutagenesis, we show that NE-/- mice are more susceptible than their normal littermates to sepsis and death following intraperitoneal infection with Gram negative (Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli) but not Gram positive (Staphylococcus aureus) bacteria. Our data indicate that neutrophils migrate normally to sites of infection in the absence of NE, but that NE is required for maximal intracellular killing of Gram negative bacteria by neutrophils.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Laboratory Investigation
                Lab Invest
                Springer Nature
                0023-6837
                1530-0307
                May 2000
                May 2000
                : 80
                : 5
                : 617-653
                Article
                10.1038/labinvest.3780067
                © 2000

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