- Distinct populations of inflammatory fibroblasts and myofibroblasts in pancreatic cancer
Öhlund et al. develop a three-dimensional co-culture platform of neoplastic pancreatic ductal organoids and pancreatic stellate cells (PSCs) to characterize the dynamic crosstalk between cancer cells and stromal cells, and to address stromal heterogeneity. The co-cultures reveal the co-existence of two phenotypically distinct populations of PSCs, providing insights into PDA biology and prompting a reconsideration of interventional strategies.
- Epithelial Fli1 deficiency drives systemic autoimmunity and fibrosis: Possible roles in scleroderma
Takahashi et al. find that epithelial cell–conditional knockdown of transcription factor Fli1 in mice drives systemic autoimmunity derived from thymic defects as well as selective tissue fibrosis in the skin and esophagus, mimicking human scleroderma. This study unravels the unanswered question about the origin of autoimmunity and selective tissue fibrosis in this disease.
- A myeloid tumor suppressor role for NOL3
Stanley et al. show that loss of Nol3 in mice leads to a myeloproliferative phenotype resembling primary myelofibrosis, with activation of JAK–STAT signaling and significant cellular and molecular resemblance to human disease. These findings provide a novel role for Nol3 in hematopoiesis and myeloid malignancies.
- RUNX1 cooperates with FLT3-ITD to induce leukemia
Behrens et al. establish the interplay of activated FLT3 receptor and the phosphorylated RUNX1 transcription factor in uncoupling proliferation and differentiation signals in acute leukemia. These findings demonstrate that RUNX1 is a viable therapeutic target in FLT3-mutated AML.
- EXTL3 mutations cause skeletal dysplasia, immune deficiency, and developmental delay
Volpi et al. demonstrate that hypomorphic EXTL3 mutations cause abnormalities of heparan sulfate composition, affect signaling in response to growth factors and cytokines, and perturb thymopoiesis, resulting in a novel genetic disease associating skeletal dysplasia, T cell immunodeficiency, and neurodevelopmental delay.
- 27-Hydroxycholesterol impairs neuronal glucose uptake through an IRAP/GLUT4 system dysregulation
Ismail et al. show that 27-hydroxycholesterol, a peripheral cholesterol metabolite capable of passing the blood–brain barrier, reduces brain glucose uptake by upregulating the renin-angiotensin system and inhibiting GLUT4. This alteration affects memory processes and is likely to have implications on neurodegenerative diseases.
- Therapeutic targeting of the pathological triad of extrasynaptic NMDA receptor signaling in neurodegenerations
Bading reviews many neurodegenerative diseases sharing heightened extrasynaptic NMDA receptor signaling, which causes a pathological triad with mitochondrial dysfunction, deregulation of transcription, and loss of dendritic structures and connectivity. Areas of therapeutic objects are defined to guide the design of novel neuroprotective combination therapies.
- Soluble TREM2 induces inflammatory responses and enhances microglial survival
Zhong et al. describe two novel roles for soluble TREM2 (sTREM2) in regulation of proinflammatory responses and prevention of cellular apoptosis in microglia.
- Fumarate hydratase is a critical metabolic regulator of hematopoietic stem cell functions
Guitart et al. performed an in vivo genetic dissection of the Krebs cycle enzyme fumarate hydratase (Fh1) in the hematopoietic system. Their investigations revealed multifaceted functions of Fh1 in the regulation of hematopoietic stem cell biology and leukemic transformation.
- Neuronal CTGF/CCN2 negatively regulates myelination in a mouse model of tuberous sclerosis complex
One of the brain manifestations of tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is reduced myelination, but the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Ercan et al. demonstrate that mutant neurons overexpress a protein, connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), which impairs oligodendrocyte maturation and myelination.