Magdalena Dragan

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Gender-related differences in the unstimulated and estrogen-induced activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) ERK1 and ERK2, cell proliferation, and cell death were examined using rat cortical astrocytes in culture. Females have higher unstimulated levels of phosphorylated ERK1 and ERK2 than males. 17beta-Estradiol (E(2)) decreases(More)
Sepsis causes brain dysfunction. Because neurotransmission requires high ascorbate and low dehydroascorbic acid (DHAA) concentrations in brain extracellular fluid, the effect of septic insult on ascorbate recycling (i.e., uptake and reduction of DHAA) and export was investigated in primary rat and mouse astrocytes. DHAA raised intracellular ascorbate to(More)
β-Arrestins play critical roles in chemotaxis and cytoskeletal reorganization downstream of several receptor types, including G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), which are targets for greater than 50% of all pharmaceuticals. Among them, receptors for lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), namely LPA(1) are overexpressed in breast cancer and promote metastatic(More)
Ascorbate is an important antioxidant in the brain. Astrocytes are capable of recycling ascorbate by taking up and then reducing its oxidation product dehydroascorbic acid (DHAA) using reducing equivalents derived from NAD(P)H. Astrocytes also contain NAD(P)H-dependent quinone reductases, such as NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase (NQO1), which are capable of(More)
Elevation of the total homocysteine (tHcy) concentration in plasma has been implicated in neurodegeneration in patients with stroke, dementia, Alzheimer disease, and Parkinson disease. Because the mechanisms controlling brain tHcy are unknown, the present study investigated its synthesis and transport in primary rat brain cell cultures. We found that the(More)
Sublethal exposure to Escherichia coli endotoxin [lipopolysaccharide (LPS)] attenuates the lethal effects of subsequent insults associated with oxidative stress, such as higher LPS dose, septic peritonitis, and ischemia. Because administration of the antioxidant ascorbate protects against these same insults and injection of dehydroascorbic acid (DHAA)(More)
Chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs) found in perineuronal nets and in the glial scar after spinal cord injury have been shown to inhibit axonal growth and plasticity. Since we have previously identified SOX9 as a transcription factor that upregulates the expression of a battery of genes associated with glial scar formation in primary astrocyte(More)
Kisspeptins (KPs), peptide products of the KISS1 metastasis-suppressor gene, are endogenous ligands for a G protein-coupled receptor (KISS1R). KISS1 acts as a metastasis suppressor in numerous human cancers. However, recent studies have demonstrated that an increase in KISS1 and KISS1R expression in patient breast tumors correlates with higher tumor grade(More)
Kisspeptins (KPs), peptide products of the KISS1 gene are endogenous ligands for the kisspeptin receptor (KISS1R), a G protein-coupled receptor. In numerous cancers, KISS1R signaling plays anti-metastatic roles. However, we have previously shown that in breast cancer cells lacking the estrogen receptor (ERα), kisspeptin-10 stimulates cell migration and(More)
Placentation is critical for establishing a healthy pregnancy. Trophoblasts mediate implantation and placentation and certain subtypes, most notably extravillous cytotrophoblast, are highly invasive. Trophoblast invasion is tightly regulated by microenvironmental cues that dictate placental morphology and depth. In choriocarcinomas, malignant trophoblast(More)