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Apoptosis is executed by caspases, which undergo proteolytic activation in response to cell death stimuli. The apoptotic protease-activating factor 1 (Apaf-1) controls caspase activation downstream of mitochondria. During apoptosis, Apaf-1 binds to cytochrome c and in the presence of ATP/dATP forms an apoptosome, leading to the recruitment and activation of(More)
The ubiquitin-specific processing protease (UBP) family of deubiquitinating enzymes plays an essential role in numerous cellular processes. HAUSP, a representative UBP, specifically deubiquitinates and hence stabilizes the tumor suppressor protein p53. Here, we report the crystal structures of the 40 kDa catalytic core domain of HAUSP in isolation and in(More)
The Ski family of nuclear oncoproteins represses TGF-beta signaling through interactions with the Smad proteins. The crystal structure of the Smad4 binding domain of human c-Ski in complex with the MH2 domain of Smad4 reveals specific recognition of the Smad4 L3 loop region by a highly conserved interaction loop (I loop) from Ski. The Ski binding surface on(More)
The therapeutic utility of siRNAs is limited by the requirement for complex formulations to deliver them to tissues. If potent single-stranded RNAs could be identified, they would provide a simpler path to pharmacological agents. Here, we describe single-stranded siRNAs (ss-siRNAs) that silence gene expression in animals absent lipid formulation. Effective(More)
FGF21 is a novel secreted protein with robust anti-diabetic, anti-obesity, and anti-atherogenic activities in preclinical species. In the current study, we investigated the signal transduction pathways downstream of FGF21 following acute administration of the growth factor to mice. Focusing on adipose tissues, we identified FGF21-mediated downstream(More)
Selenium (Se) has been widely reported to possess anti-tumor effects. Angiogenesis is the formation of new blood vessels and is required to supply oxygen, nutrients, and growth factors for tumor growth, progression, and metastasis. To explore whether the anti-tumor effect of Se was associated with angiogenesis in vivo, we studied the effects of sodium(More)
The essential trace element selenium (Se) modulates the functions of many regulatory proteins in signal transduction, conferring benefits in inflammatory diseases. Endometritis is a reproductive obstacle disease both in humans and animals. Staphylococcus aureus is the major pathogen that causes endometritis. The present study analyzes the protection and(More)
We herein examined the effects of different doses, forms, and compatibilities of selenium on a canine mammary gland tumor cell line, CTM1211, and explored the related mechanisms. Three selenium compounds, sodium selenite (SSE), methylseleninic acid (MSA), and methylselenocysteine (MSC), were selected for these experiments, and cyclophosphamide (CTX) served(More)
The ss-siRNA activity in vivo requires a metabolically stable 5'-phosphate analog. In this report we used crystal structure of the 5'-phosphate binding pocket of Ago-2 bound with guide strand to design and synthesize ss-siRNAs containing various 5'-phosphate analogs. Our results indicate that the electronic and spatial orientation of the 5'-phosphate analog(More)
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