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Research News

Age-dependent nuclear lipid droplet accumulation is a cellular hallmark of ageing

Interdisciplinary scientific collaboration between the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (IMBB, FORTH), the Institute of Electronic Structure and Laser (IESL, FORTH) and the Medical School of National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (NKUA), sheds light into the molecular mechanisms that regulate nuclear lipid droplets accumulation during ageing.

[Aging Cell

Discovering a disinhibitory microcircuit responsible for contextual information processing in the hippocampus

IMBB and NYU researchers joined forces to study how the brain conveys important environmental cues and contexts such as novelty and reward information. Using dendritic electrophysiology recordings, optogenetic circuit mapping, and multi-compartment computational modeling they uncovered a disinhibitory microcircuit that gates dendritic spikes in hippocampal pyramidal neurons driven by lateral entorhinal cortex inputs. These inputs are among the first to be affected in Alzheimer's disease.

[Cell Reports]

DNA damage responses drive the autoreactivity of B cells

B cells in lupus erythematosus patients exhibit an autoreactive phenotype characterized by excessive activation and antibodies production. We reveal that ATR-mediated DNA damage response (DDR) drives the pathogenicity of B cell responses in SLE. Pharmacological targeting of ATR, attenuated B-cell immunogenic profile, proposing DDR as a novel therapeutic target.


Pathogenic bacteria inhibit host cell secretion to manipulate host immunity

Some phytopathogenic bacteria produce an effector protein that inhibits exocytosis by affecting the proper assembly of the exocyst complex.
Under normal conditions (A), the exocyst complex is properly assembled to transfer the secretory vesicles to the cell membrane for the secretion their content into the apoplast.
When the cell is infected by the bacterium Xanthomonas (B), an effector protein blocks the proper assembly of the exocyst complex, thereby inhibiting the process of extracellular secretion.

[Press Release]  [Plant Cell]