Volume 6.10 | Mar 19

Extracellular Matrix News 6.10 March 19, 2015
Extracellular Matrix News
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Regeneration in a Hostile Environment – Cancer Drug Promotes Regeneration of Damaged Neurons
In animal studies, the cancer drug epothilone reduced the formation of scar tissue in injuries to the spinal cord and stimulated growth in damaged nerve cells. Both promoted neuronal regeneration and improved the animals’ motor skills. [Press release from the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases discussing online prepublication in Science] Press Release | Abstract
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PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
A Novel Profibrotic Mechanism Mediated by TGF-β-Stimulated Collagen Prolyl Hydroxylase Expression in Fibrotic Lung Mesenchymal Cells
The relationship between activated TGF-β signaling, upregulation of P4HA3 (an α-subunit of collagen prolyl hydroxylase), as well as increased hydroxyproline/collagen production was verified in cultured lung fibroblasts. [J Pathol] Abstract | Press Release

​Notch1-​Dll4 Signaling and Mechanical Force Regulate Leader Cell Formation during Collective Cell Migration
Scientists used single-cell gene expression analysis and computational modeling to show that leader cell identity is dynamically regulated by ​Dll4 signaling through both ​Notch1 and cellular stress in a migrating epithelium. [Nat Commun] Abstract | Press Release

Toward Structured Macroporous Hydrogel Composites: Electron Beam-Initiated Polymerization of Layered Cryogels
The authors reported a technique for the modification of the pore size and stiffness of acrylamide-based cryogels is demonstrated via the regulation of an electron beam irradiation dose. The functionality of the prepared substrates was evaluated by in vitro cultivation of adipose-derived stem cells. [Biomacromolecules] Abstract

Self-Assembled Peptide Amphiphile Nanofibers and PEG Composite Hydrogels as Tunable ECM Mimetic Microenvironment
Researchers developed a facile fabrication method for a novel nanofibrous self-assembled peptide amphiphile and poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) composite hydrogel system with independently tunable biochemical, mechanical, and physical cues without any chemical modification of polymer backbone or additional polymer processing techniques to create synthetic extracellular matrix (ECM) analogs. [Biomacromolecules]
Abstract | Graphical Abstract

In Vitro Epithelial Organoid Generation Induced by Substrate Nanotopography
Researchers examined the effect of substrate nanotopography on the morphogenesis of several types of epithelial cells and found that in response to the topography, Calu-3 and MDCK-II cells formed organoids that closely resemble their morphology in vivo. [Sci Rep] Full Article

Compaction, Fusion, and Functional Activation of Three-Dimensional Human Mesenchymal Stem Cell Aggregate
Scientists investigated the role of actin in regulating three-dimensional human mesenchymal stem cells aggregate compaction, fusion, spreading and functional activation. [Tissue Eng Part A] Abstract

Effect of Co-Culturing Canine Notochordal, Nucleus Pulposus and Mesenchymal Stromal Cells for Intervertebral Disc
The regenerative potential of canine notochordal cells was assessed in long-term 3D co-culture with canine nucleus pulposus cells or mesenchymal stromal cells. [Arthritis Res Ther] Abstract | Full Article

A Membrane-Type-1 Matrix Metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP) – Discoidin Domain Receptor 1 Axis Regulates Collagen-Induced Apoptosis in Breast Cancer Cells
To address the impact of type I collagen on the fate of tumor cells, human breast carcinoma MCF-7 cells were cultured within three-dimensional type I collagen gels (3D COL1). Control and MT1-MMP expressing MCF-7 cells were cultured on two-dimensional plastic plates or within 3D COL1 and a global transcriptional time-course analysis was performed. [PLoS One] Full Article

In Vitro Elastogenesis: Instructing Human Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells to Generate an Elastic Fiber-Containing Extracellular Matrix Scaffold
Investigators seeded primary isolated human vascular smooth muscle cells onto 3D electrospun scaffolds and exposed them to defined laminar shear stress using a customized bioreactor system. Increased elastin expression followed by elastin deposition onto the electrospun scaffolds, as well as on newly formed fibers, was observed after six days. [Biomed Mater] Full Article

Varying RGD Concentration and Cell Phenotype Alters the Expression of Extracellular Matrix Genes in Vocal Fold Fibroblasts
Scientists investigated the effects of varying RGD integrin-binding peptide surface concentration on extracellular matrix gene expression of elastin, collagen type 3 alpha 1, decorin, fibronectin, hyaluronan synthase 2, and collagen type 1 alpha 2 in scarred and unscarred immortalized human vocal fold fibroblasts. [J Biomed Mater Res A] Abstract

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Plasma Membrane-Associated Platforms: Dynamic Scaffolds that Organize Membrane-Associated Events
Plasma membrane-associated platforms (PMAPs) organize signaling events and trafficking of membranes and molecules at specific membrane domains. On the basis of the intrinsic disorder of the proteins constituting the core of these PMAPs and of the dynamics of these structures at the periphery of motile cells, the authors propose a working model for the assembly and turnover of these platforms. [Sci Signal] Abstract

Visit our reviews page to see a complete list of reviews in the extracellular matrix research field.
Research on Injectable Oriented Hydrogels for Spinal Cord Repair
The research objective of Dr. Laura De Laporte is to develop a minimally invasive therapy for spinal cord injury. She received a €1.5 million European Research Council Starting Grant for her project ANISOGEL. [DWI – Leibniz Institute for Interactive Materials in Aachen] Press Release

Texas Medical Center Team Aims to Improve Research of Gastrointestinal Disease
Thanks to a $5.1 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, tissue engineering researcher Jane Grande-Allen and colleagues at Baylor College of Medicine and MD Anderson Cancer Center are embarking on a five-year program to create a bioreactor that more closely simulates the complex tissues and dynamic movements of the intestinal track. [Rice University] Press Release

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European Medicines Agency (European Union)

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Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia)
NEW International Symposium on Bone Regeneration (ISBR)
June 11-13, 2015
Berlin, Germany

NEW EMBO Workshop – Cellular and Molecular Mechanism of Tumor-Microenvironment Crosstalk
July 9-12, 2015
Tomsk, Russia

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the extracellular matrix community.
NEW PhD Position – Early Human Brain Development Modeling with hiPSCs (University of Bonn)

NEW Postdoctoral Researcher – Biochemistry/Drug Discovery (Université de Sherbrooke)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Role of ECM Proteolysis in Normal and Pathological Corneal Repair (UCSF)

Associate Director – Cell Therapy (Stelfox)

Senior Scientist – Cell Biology CMC (Selvita)

PhD Studentship – Cell Migration (MOCA Institute of Molecular and Cellular Anatomy)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Tumor Cells in Altered Matrix Environments (Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai)

Director – Vector Production (Sangamo BioSciences, Inc.)

Senior Process Development Engineer (Sangamo BioSciences, Inc.)

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