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Maturation of neuronal synapses is thought to involve mitochondria. Bcl-xL protein inhibits mitochondria-mediated apoptosis but may have other functions in healthy adult neurons in which Bcl-xL is abundant. Here, we report that overexpression of Bcl-xL postsynaptically increases frequency and amplitude of spontaneous miniature synaptic currents in rat(More)
Investigation of events committing cells to death revealed that a concealed NH2-terminal epitope of the pro-apoptotic protein Bak became exposed in vivo before apoptosis. This occurred after treatment of human Jurkat or CEM-C7A T-lymphoma cells with the mechanistically disparate agents staurosporine, etoposide or dexamethasone. The rapid, up to 10-fold(More)
The search for novel antitumour drugs has reached a plateau phase. The carcinomas remain almost as intractable as they did 40 years ago and the need for effective therapy is pressing. There is an argument that the current pharmacopoeia is sufficient but, to be effective, the biochemical mechanisms of drug resistance must be circumvented. In tackling the(More)
One of the earliest effects of hypoxia on neuronal function is to produce a run-down of synaptic transmission, and more prolonged hypoxia results in neuronal death. An increase in the permeability of the outer mitochondrial membrane, controlled by BCL-2 family proteins, occurs in response to stimuli that trigger cell death. By patch clamping mitochondrial(More)
BCL-2 family proteins are known to regulate cell death during development by influencing the permeability of mitochondrial membranes. The anti-apoptotic BCL-2 family protein BCL-xL is highly expressed in the adult brain and localizes to mitochondria in the presynaptic terminal of the adult squid stellate ganglion. Application of recombinant BCL-xL through a(More)
It is still unclear whether the BH3-only protein Puma (p53 up-regulated modulator of apoptosis) can prime cells to death and render antiapoptotic BH3-binding Bcl-2 homologues necessary for survival through its ability to directly interact with proapoptotic Bax and activate it. In this study, we provide further evidence, using cell-free assays, that the BH3(More)
INTRODUCTION Basal-like carcinomas (BLCs) and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 overexpressing (HER2+) carcinomas are the subgroups of breast cancers that have the most aggressive clinical behaviour. In contrast to HER2+ carcinomas, no targeted therapy is currently available for the treatment of patients with BLCs. In order to discover potential(More)
Neuronal death is often preceded by functional alterations at nerve terminals. Anti- and proapoptotic BCL-2 family proteins not only regulate the neuronal death pathway but also affect excitability of healthy neurons. We found that exposure of squid stellate ganglia to hypoxia, a death stimulus for neurons, causes a cysteine protease-dependent loss of(More)
A role for BCL-xL in regulating neuronal activity is suggested by its dramatic effects on synaptic function and mitochondrial channel activity. When recombinant BCL-xL is injected into the giant presynaptic terminal of squid stellate ganglion or applied directly to mitochondrial outer membranes within the living terminal, it potentiates synaptic(More)
Transient global ischemia in rats induces delayed death of hippocampal CA1 neurons. Early events include caspase activation, cleavage of anti-death Bcl-2 family proteins and large mitochondrial channel activity. However, whether these events have a causal role in ischemia-induced neuronal death is unclear. We found that the Bcl-2 and Bcl-x(L) inhibitor(More)