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Damage to the insular cortex can profoundly disrupt tobacco addiction in human smokers, reflected in spontaneous cessation of the tobacco habit and persistently decreased urge to smoke. Little is known concerning the neurobiological mechanisms through which the insula may control the maintenance of the tobacco habit. Emerging evidence suggests that(More)
Genetic variation in CHRNA5, the gene encoding the α5 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit, increases vulnerability to tobacco addiction and lung cancer, but the underlying mechanisms are unknown. Here we report markedly increased nicotine intake in mice with a null mutation in Chrna5. This effect was 'rescued' in knockout mice by re-expressing α5(More)
Cocaine addiction is characterized by a gradual loss of control over drug use, but the molecular mechanisms regulating vulnerability to this process remain unclear. Here we report that microRNA-212 (miR-212) is upregulated in the dorsal striatum of rats with a history of extended access to cocaine. Striatal miR-212 decreases responsiveness to the(More)
The neocortical primary somatosensory area (S1) consists of a map of the body surface. The cortical area devoted to different regions, such as parts of the face or hands, reflects their functional importance. Here we investigated the role of genetically determined positional labels in neocortical mapping. Ephrin-A5 was expressed in a medial > lateral(More)
PtdIns(3)P plays critical roles in the autophagy pathway. However, little is known about how PtdIns(3)P effectors act with autophagy proteins in autophagosome formation. Here we identified an essential autophagy gene in C. elegans, epg-6, which encodes a WD40 repeat-containing protein with PtdIns(3)P-binding activity. EPG-6 directly interacts with ATG-2.(More)
The p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75(NTR)) is expressed by neurons particularly vulnerable in Alzheimer's disease (AD). We tested the hypothesis that non-peptide, small molecule p75(NTR) ligands found to promote survival signaling might prevent Abeta-induced degeneration and synaptic dysfunction. These ligands inhibited Abeta-induced neuritic dystrophy, death(More)
Many chemotherapy drugs are known to cause significant clinical neurotoxicity, which can result in the early cessation of treatment. To identify and develop more effective means of neuroprotection it is important to understand the toxicity of these drugs at the molecular and cellular levels. In the present study, we examine the effects of paclitaxel(More)
Nonreceptor tyrosine kinase Abl is an actin-binding protein and a key regulator of neuronal axonal development. Although Abl family kinases also are localized in dendrites and are implicated in postsynaptic functions, it is not clear how Abl kinases regulate dendritic morphogenesis. Using a developing hippocampal culture as a model, we found that the(More)
Urinary bladder cancer (UBC) patients at muscle invasive stage have poor clinical outcome, due to high propensity for metastasis. Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs), one of the principal constituents of the tumor stroma, play an important role in tumor development. However, it is unclear whether CAFs from UBC induce cell invasion and which signaling(More)
Claudin-7, a member of the claudin family, is highly expressed in distal nephrons of kidneys and has been reported to be involved in the regulation of paracellular Cl(-) permeability in cell cultures. To investigate the role of claudin-7 in vivo, we generated claudin-7 knockout mice (Cln7(-/-)) by the gene-targeting deletion method. Here we report that(More)