Volume 5.04 | Feb 6

Extracellular Matrix News 5.04 February 6, 2014
Extracellular Matrix News
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Enhanced Cognitive Flexibility in Reversal Learning Induced by Removal of the Extracellular Matrix in Auditory Cortex
Researchers removed the extracellular matrix in the auditory cortex of adult Mongolian gerbils during specific phases of cortex-dependent auditory relearning, which was induced by the contingency reversal of a frequency-modulated tone discrimination, a task requiring high behavioral flexibility. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA]
| Press Release
Take the If out of Diff: Reduce variability when differentiating to neural progenitors
PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
Integrin αvβ3 and Thyroid Hormones Promote Expansion of Progenitors in Embryonic Neocortex
The authors showed that targeted activation of the extracellular matrix receptor integrin αvβ3 on basal progenitors in embryonic mouse neocortex promotes their expansion. [Development] Abstract | Press Release

Molecular Adhesion between Cartilage Extracellular Matrix Macromolecules
Scientists investigated the molecular adhesion between the major constituents of cartilage extracellular matrix, namely the highly negatively charged proteoglycan aggrecan and the type II/IX/XI fibrillar collagen network, in simulated physiological conditions. [Biomacromolecules] Abstract

Heparin Prevents Intracellular Hyaluronan Synthesis and Autophagy Responses in Hyperglycemic Dividing Mesangial Cells and Activates Synthesis of an Extensive Extracellular Monocyte-Adhesive Hyaluronan Matrix after Completing Cell Division
The authors showed that heparin inhibits intracellular hyaluronan synthesis and autophagy responses, but at the end of cell division induces synthesis of a much larger extracellular monocyte-adhesive hyaluronan matrix. [J Biol Chem]
| Full Article

The Extracellular Matrix Protein Artichoke Is Required for Integrity of Ciliated Mechanosensory and Chemosensory Organs in Drosophila Embryos
Researchers identified Artichoke, an evolutionary conserved leucine-rich repeat extracellular matrix protein that is required for normal morphogenesis and function of ciliated sensilla in Drosophila. [Genetics] Abstract

Flexibility and Explicit Solvent in Molecular Dynamics-Based Docking of Protein-Glycosaminoglycan Systems
The authors aimed to develop a proof of concept for a molecular dynamics-based docking approach and to analyze its applicability for protein-glycosaminoglycans systems. Dynamic Molecular Docking (DMD) exploits the electrostatics-driven attraction of a ligand to its receptor, treats both as entirely flexible and considers solvent explicitly. [J Chem Inf Model] Abstract

TAF4 Inactivation Reveals the 3 Dimensional Growth Promoting Activities of Collagen 6A3
Scientists showed that Collagen 6A3 (Col6a3) is highly expressed in densely growing mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs). In MEFs where the TAF4 subunit of general transcription factor IID has been inactivated, elevated Col6a3 expression prevents contact inhibition promoting their three dimensional growth as foci and fibrospheres. [PLoS One] Abstract

Extracellular Matrix Density Promotes Epithelial to Mesenchymal Transition by Weakening Cell-Cell Adhesions
The authors have developed a computational framework for studying modulation of cell-cell adhesion by extracellular matrix (ECM) density, integrating findings from multiple studies that connect ECM-mediated adhesion signaling and growth factor signaling with cell-cell adhesion. [Mol Biosyst] Abstract

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Integrins and Integrin-Associated Proteins in the Cardiac Myocyte
After a general introduction to integrin biology, the authors discuss important work on integrin signaling, mechanotransduction, and lessons learned about integrin function from a range of model organisms. [Circ Res] Abstract

Heparan Sulfate Proteoglycans and Heparin Regulate Melanoma Cell Functions
This review discusses the roles of heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs)/heparin in melanoma development and progression. The authors correlated HSPGs’ expression and distribution with melanoma cell signaling and functions as well as angiogenesis. [Biochim Biophys Acta] Abstract

Multifunctional ECM Proteins in Bone and Teeth
The authors focus on the extracellular matrix (ECM) of mineralized tissues namely bone and dentin. They provide a brief review of some non-classical ECM proteins that have been shown to possess both intra and extracellular roles in the formation of these mineralized matrices. [Exp Cell Res] Abstract

Visit our reviews page to see a complete list of reviews in the extracellular matrix research field.
AxoGen, Inc. Announces Presentation of New Clinical Data for Avance® Nerve Graft
Researchers presented results from a clinical study entitled “Outcomes from a Multi-Center, Prospective, Randomized, Blinded, Comparison Study of Processed Nerve Allografts and Hollow-Tube Conduit for Nerve Reconstructions in the Hand”. The study offers the first multi-center prospective outcomes data comparing Avance® Nerve Graft with hollow tubes for nerve repair. [Press release from AxoGen, Inc. discussing research presented at the combined annual meetings of AAHS, ASPN and ASRM, Kauai] Press Release

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ACell Expands MatriStem® Pelvic Floor Matrix Product Portfolio with Addition of Four Device Sizes
ACell, Inc. announced that it has expanded the MatriStem® Pelvic Floor Matrix product portfolio with the addition of four device sizes. MatriStem Pelvic Floor Matrix is a naturally-occuring, non-synthetic scaffold that provides a unique balance of strength and pliability for use in repair of anterior, posterior and apical defects. [ACell, Inc.] Press Release

Mechanical Engineer Studies Flow of Blood Vessels Related to Diabetes and Resulting Heart Disease
People with diabetes develop early and severe heart disease, specifically atherosclerosis, a condition in which plaque builds up inside the arteries. Alisa Clyne, a mechanical engineer by training, wants to better understand the biomechanics of this process. The National Science Foundation-funded scientist specifically is studying the behavior of endothelial cells, which form the inner layer of blood vessels, and which “sense the mechanics of their environment and respond to it,” she says. [The National Science Foundation] Press Release
Judges Side with FDA on Stem Cells
The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that culturing a patient’s stem cells for therapeutic use falls under the aegis of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). FDA has said therapeutic stem cells should be regulated as drugs. [The Scientist] Editorial | Court Ruling

National Institutes of Health (United States)

Food and Drug Administration (United States)

Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (United States)

European Medicines Agency (European Union)

Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (United Kingdom)

Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia)
NEW Fourth Annual Advanced Therapies Summit 2014
March 12-13, 2014
Turin, Italy

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the extracellular matrix community.
NEW Postdoctoral Fellow – Mechanism of Remodeling in Heart and Vascular Diseases (University of Alberta)

Faculty Position – Cervical Biology (Wayne State University School of Medicine)

Postdoctoral Position – Development of Uni-Lamellar Scaffolds for Bio-Mineralization in Bone Repair (Fujifilm)

MSc Studentship – Soft Tissue Nanomechanics (Saint Mary’s University)

Postdoctoral Fellowship – Cellular and Molecular Mechanisms of Adult CNS Plasticity (University of Turin)

Postdoctoral Researcher – Mechanisms of Angiogenesis and Vasculogenesis during Development and Retinal Diseases (State University of New York)

Postdoctoral Training Fellow – Proteomics and Cancer Biology (The Institute of Cancer Research)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Extracellular Matrix-Integrin Signaling and Trafficking of Membrane Transporters (Massachusetts General Hospital)

PhD Studentships – Collagen IV and Angiogenesis (University of East Anglia)

Postdoctoral Research Fellow – Mechanobiology, Fibroblasts and Matrix Biology (Mayo Clinic)

Postdoctoral Position – Stem Cells and Bioengineering (Queensland University of Technology/Translational Research Institute)

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