Rama K. Mallampalli

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This study uses human alveolar macrophages to determine whether activation of a phosphatidylcholine (PC)-specific phospholipase C (PC-PLC) is linked to activation of the p42/44 (ERK) kinases by LPS. LPS-induced ERK kinase activation was inhibited by tricyclodecan-9-yl xanthogenate (D609), a relatively specific inhibitor of PC-PLC. LPS also increased amounts(More)
BACKGROUND The PLUNC ("Palate, lung, nasal epithelium clone") protein is an abundant secretory product of epithelia present throughout the conducting airways of humans and other mammals, which is evolutionarily related to the lipid transfer/lipopolysaccharide binding protein (LT/LBP) family. Two members of this family--the bactericidal/permeability(More)
We investigated the effects of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFalpha), a key cytokine involved in inflammatory lung disease, on phosphatidylcholine (PtdCho) biosynthesis in a murine alveolar type II epithelial cell line (MLE-12). TNFalpha significantly inhibited [(3)H]choline incorporation into PtdCho after 24 h of exposure. TNFalpha reduced the activity of(More)
Cortactin, an actin-binding protein, is essential for cell growth and motility. We have shown that cortactin is regulated by reversible phosphorylation, but little is known regarding cortactin protein stability. Here, we show that lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced cortactin degradation is mediated by extracellular regulated signal kinase (ERK). LPS induces(More)
Ceramide is a key bioactive mediator that inhibits surfactant phosphatidylcholine (PtdCho) synthesis in lung epithelia. Ceramide availability is governed by sphingomyelin (SM) hydrolysis, but less is known regarding its de novo synthesis. In this study, we observed that ceramide synthesis within murine lung epithelia was associated with high-level ceramide(More)
In contrast to short-lived neutrophils, macrophages display persistent presence in the lung of animals after pulmonary exposure to carbon nanotubes. While effective in the clearance of bacterial pathogens and injured host cells, the ability of macrophages to "digest" carbonaceous nanoparticles has not been documented. Here, we used chemical, biochemical,(More)
Pulmonary surfactant is essential for life and is composed of a complex lipoprotein-like mixture that lines the inner surface of the lung to prevent alveolar collapse at the end of expiration. The molecular composition of surfactant depends on highly integrated and regulated processes involving its biosynthesis, remodeling, degradation, and intracellular(More)
The phosphatidylinositol (PI) 3-kinase pathway is an important regulator of cell survival. In human alveolar macrophages, we found that LPS activates PI 3-kinase and its downstream effector, Akt. LPS exposure of alveolar macrophages also results in the generation of ceramide. Because ceramide exposure induces apoptosis in other cell types and the PI(More)
Pneumonia remains the leading cause of death from infection in the US, yet fundamentally new conceptual models underlying its pathogenesis have not emerged. We show that humans and mice with bacterial pneumonia have markedly elevated amounts of cardiolipin, a rare, mitochondrial-specific phospholipid, in lung fluid and find that it potently disrupts(More)
CTP:phosphocholine cytidylyltransferase (CCTalpha) is a proteolytically sensitive enzyme essential for production of phosphatidylcholine, the major phospholipid of animal cell membranes. The molecular signals that govern CCTalpha protein stability are unknown. An NH(2)-terminal PEST sequence within CCTalpha did not serve as a degradation signal for the(More)