Curated Optogenetic Publication Database

Search precisely and efficiently by using the advantage of the hand-assigned publication tags that allow you to search for papers involving a specific trait, e.g. a particular optogenetic switch or a host organism.

Showing 1 - 11 of 11 results

Synthetic Biology Meets Ca2+ Release-Activated Ca2+ Channel-Dependent Immunomodulation.

blue red iLID Cryptochromes LOV domains Phytochromes Review
Cells, 7 Mar 2024 DOI: 10.3390/cells13060468 Link to full text
Abstract: Many essential biological processes are triggered by the proximity of molecules. Meanwhile, diverse approaches in synthetic biology, such as new biological parts or engineered cells, have opened up avenues to precisely control the proximity of molecules and eventually downstream signaling processes. This also applies to a main Ca2+ entry pathway into the cell, the so-called Ca2+ release-activated Ca2+ (CRAC) channel. CRAC channels are among other channels are essential in the immune response and are activated by receptor-ligand binding at the cell membrane. The latter initiates a signaling cascade within the cell, which finally triggers the coupling of the two key molecular components of the CRAC channel, namely the stromal interaction molecule, STIM, in the ER membrane and the plasma membrane Ca2+ ion channel, Orai. Ca2+ entry, established via STIM/Orai coupling, is essential for various immune cell functions, including cytokine release, proliferation, and cytotoxicity. In this review, we summarize the tools of synthetic biology that have been used so far to achieve precise control over the CRAC channel pathway and thus over downstream signaling events related to the immune response.

Bioelectricity in Developmental Patterning and Size Control: Evidence and Genetically Encoded Tools in the Zebrafish Model.

blue AsLOV BLUF domains Cryptochromes LOV domains Review
Cells, 13 Apr 2023 DOI: 10.3390/cells12081148 Link to full text
Abstract: Developmental patterning is essential for regulating cellular events such as axial patterning, segmentation, tissue formation, and organ size determination during embryogenesis. Understanding the patterning mechanisms remains a central challenge and fundamental interest in developmental biology. Ion-channel-regulated bioelectric signals have emerged as a player of the patterning mechanism, which may interact with morphogens. Evidence from multiple model organisms reveals the roles of bioelectricity in embryonic development, regeneration, and cancers. The Zebrafish model is the second most used vertebrate model, next to the mouse model. The zebrafish model has great potential for elucidating the functions of bioelectricity due to many advantages such as external development, transparent early embryogenesis, and tractable genetics. Here, we review genetic evidence from zebrafish mutants with fin-size and pigment changes related to ion channels and bioelectricity. In addition, we review the cell membrane voltage reporting and chemogenetic tools that have already been used or have great potential to be implemented in zebrafish models. Finally, new perspectives and opportunities for bioelectricity research with zebrafish are discussed.

Using optogenetics to investigate the shared mechanisms of apical-basal polarity and mitosis.

blue red Cryptochromes LOV domains Phytochromes Review
Cells Tissues Organs, 4 Jan 2023 DOI: 10.1159/000528796 Link to full text
Abstract: The initiation of apical-basal (AB) polarity and the process of mitotic cell division are both characterised by the generation of specialised plasma membrane and cortical domains. These are generated using shared mechanisms, such as asymmetric protein accumulation, Rho GTPase signalling, cytoskeletal reorganisation, vesicle trafficking and asymmetric phosphoinositide distribution. In epithelial tissue, the coordination of AB polarity and mitosis in space and time is important both during initial epithelial development and to maintain tissue integrity and ensure appropriate cell differentiation at later stages. Whilst significant progress has been made in understanding the mechanisms underlying cell division and AB polarity, it has so far been challenging to fully unpick the complex interrelationship between polarity, signalling, morphogenesis, and cell division. However, the recent emergence of optogenetic protein localisation techniques is now allowing researchers to reversibly control protein activation, localisation and signalling with high spatiotemporal resolution. This has the potential to revolutionise our understanding of how subcellular processes such as apical-basal polarity are integrated with cell behaviours such as mitosis and how these processes impact whole tissue morphogenesis. So far, these techniques have been used to investigate processes such as cleavage furrow ingression, mitotic spindle positioning, and in vivo epithelial morphogenesis. This review describes some of the key shared mechanisms of cell division and apical-basal polarity establishment, how they are coordinated during development and how the advance of optogenetic techniques is furthering this research field.

Wnt Signaling Rescues Amyloid Beta-Induced Gut Stem Cell Loss.

blue CRY2/CRY2 D. melanogaster in vivo Signaling cascade control
Cells, 14 Jan 2022 DOI: 10.3390/cells11020281 Link to full text
Abstract: Patients with Alzheimer's disease suffer from a decrease in brain mass and a prevalence of amyloid-β plaques. These plaques are thought to play a role in disease progression, but their exact role is not entirely established. We developed an optogenetic model to induce amyloid-β intracellular oligomerization to model distinct disease etiologies. Here, we examine the effect of Wnt signaling on amyloid in an optogenetic, Drosophila gut stem cell model. We observe that Wnt activation rescues the detrimental effects of amyloid expression and oligomerization. We analyze the gene expression changes downstream of Wnt that contribute to this rescue and find changes in aging related genes, protein misfolding, metabolism, and inflammation. We propose that Wnt expression reduces inflammation through repression of Toll activating factors. We confirm that chronic Toll activation reduces lifespan, but a decrease in the upstream activator Persephone extends it. We propose that the protective effect observed for lithium treatment functions, at least in part, through Wnt activation and the inhibition of inflammation.

The early Drosophila embryo as a model system for quantitative biology.

blue Cryptochromes Review
Cells Dev, 20 Jul 2021 DOI: 10.1016/j.cdev.2021.203722 Link to full text
Abstract: With the rise of new tools, from controlled genetic manipulations and optogenetics to improved microscopy, it is now possible to make clear, quantitative and reproducible measurements of biological processes. The humble fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, with its ease of genetic manipulation combined with excellent imaging accessibility, has become a major model system for performing quantitative in vivo measurements. Such measurements are driving a new wave of interest from physicists and engineers, who are developing a range of testable dynamic models of active systems to understand fundamental biological processes. The reproducibility of the early Drosophila embryo has been crucial for understanding how biological systems are robust to unavoidable noise during development. Insights from quantitative in vivo experiments in the Drosophila embryo are having an impact on our understanding of critical biological processes, such as how cells make decisions and how complex tissue shape emerges. Here, to highlight the power of using Drosophila embryogenesis for quantitative biology, I focus on three main areas: (1) formation and robustness of morphogen gradients; (2) how gene regulatory networks ensure precise boundary formation; and (3) how mechanical interactions drive packing and tissue folding. I further discuss how such data has driven advances in modelling.

Activation of Cdc42 GTPase upon CRY2-Induced Cortical Recruitment Is Antagonized by GAPs in Fission Yeast.

blue CRY2/CIB1 S. pombe
Cells, 12 Sep 2020 DOI: 10.3390/cells9092089 Link to full text
Abstract: The small GTPase Cdc42 is critical for cell polarization in eukaryotic cells. In rod-shaped fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe cells, active GTP-bound Cdc42 promotes polarized growth at cell poles, while inactive Cdc42-GDP localizes ubiquitously also along cell sides. Zones of Cdc42 activity are maintained by positive feedback amplification involving the formation of a complex between Cdc42-GTP, the scaffold Scd2, and the guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) Scd1, which promotes the activation of more Cdc42. Here, we use the CRY2-CIB1 optogenetic system to recruit and cluster a cytosolic Cdc42 variant at the plasma membrane and show that this leads to its moderate activation also on cell sides. Surprisingly, Scd2, which binds Cdc42-GTP, is still recruited to CRY2-Cdc42 clusters at cell sides in individual deletion of the GEFs Scd1 or Gef1. We show that activated Cdc42 clusters at cell sides are able to recruit Scd1, dependent on the scaffold Scd2. However, Cdc42 activity is not amplified by positive feedback and does not lead to morphogenetic changes, due to antagonistic activity of the GTPase activating protein Rga4. Thus, the cell architecture is robust to moderate activation of Cdc42 at cell sides.

Color Sensing and Signal Transmission Diversity of Cyanobacterial Phytochromes and Cyanobacteriochromes.

green red Phytochromes Review
Mol Cells, 22 May 2020 DOI: 10.14348/molcells.2020.0077 Link to full text
Abstract: To perceive fluctuations in light quality, quantity, and timing, higher plants have evolved diverse photoreceptors including UVR8 (a UV-B photoreceptor), cryptochromes, phototropins, and phytochromes (Phys). In contrast to plants, prokaryotic oxygen-evolving photosynthetic organisms, cyanobacteria, rely mostly on bilin-based photoreceptors, namely, cyanobacterial phytochromes (Cphs) and cyanobacteriochromes (CBCRs), which exhibit structural and functional differences compared with plant Phys. CBCRs comprise varying numbers of light sensing domains with diverse color-tuning mechanisms and signal transmission pathways, allowing cyanobacteria to respond to UV-A, visible, and far-red lights. Recent genomic surveys of filamentous cyanobacteria revealed novel CBCRs with broader chromophore-binding specificity and photocycle protochromicity. Furthermore, a novel Cph lineage has been identified that absorbs blue-violet/yellow-orange light. In this minireview, we briefly discuss the diversity in color sensing and signal transmission mechanisms of Cphs and CBCRs, along with their potential utility in the field of optogenetics.

Cyclic Nucleotide-Specific Optogenetics Highlights Compartmentalization of the Sperm Flagellum into cAMP Microdomains.

blue red bPAC (BlaC) LAPD HEK293 mouse sperm cells Signaling cascade control Control of cytoskeleton / cell motility / cell shape Immediate control of second messengers
Cells, 27 Jun 2019 DOI: 10.3390/cells8070648 Link to full text
Abstract: Inside the female genital tract, mammalian sperm undergo a maturation process called capacitation, which primes the sperm to navigate across the oviduct and fertilize the egg. Sperm capacitation and motility are controlled by 3',5'-cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP). Here, we show that optogenetics, the control of cellular signaling by genetically encoded light-activated proteins, allows to manipulate cAMP dynamics in sperm flagella and, thereby, sperm capacitation and motility by light. To this end, we used sperm that express the light-activated phosphodiesterase LAPD or the photo-activated adenylate cyclase bPAC. The control of cAMP by LAPD or bPAC combined with pharmacological interventions provides spatiotemporal precision and allows to probe the physiological function of cAMP compartmentalization in mammalian sperm.

Membrane-Associated, Not Cytoplasmic or Nuclear, FGFR1 Induces Neuronal Differentiation.

blue VfAU1-LOV HEK293 PC-12 U-251 Signaling cascade control Cell differentiation
Cells, 14 Mar 2019 DOI: 10.3390/cells8030243 Link to full text
Abstract: The intracellular transport of receptor tyrosine kinases results in the differential activation of various signaling pathways. In this study, optogenetic stimulation of fibroblast growth factor receptor type 1 (FGFR1) was performed to study the effects of subcellular targeting of receptor kinases on signaling and neurite outgrowth. The catalytic domain of FGFR1 fused to the algal light-oxygen-voltage-sensing (LOV) domain was directed to different cellular compartments (plasma membrane, cytoplasm and nucleus) in human embryonic kidney (HEK293) and pheochromocytoma (PC12) cells. Blue light stimulation elevated the pERK and pPLCγ1 levels in membrane-opto-FGFR1-transfected cells similarly to ligand-induced receptor activation; however, no changes in pAKT levels were observed. PC12 cells transfected with membrane-opto-FGFR1 exhibited significantly longer neurites after light stimulation than after growth factor treatment, and significantly more neurites extended from their cell bodies. The activation of cytoplasmic FGFR1 kinase enhanced ERK signaling in HEK293 cells but not in PC12 cells and did not induce neuronal differentiation. The stimulation of FGFR1 kinase in the nucleus also did not result in signaling changes or neurite outgrowth. We conclude that FGFR1 kinase needs to be associated with membranes to induce the differentiation of PC12 cells mainly via ERK activation.

Synergistic Ensemble of Optogenetic Actuators and Dynamic Indicators in Cell Biology.

blue Cryptochromes Review
Mol Cells, 29 Aug 2018 DOI: 10.14348/molcells.2018.0295 Link to full text
Abstract: Discovery of the naturally evolved fluorescent proteins and their genetically engineered biosensors have enormously contributed to current bio-imaging techniques. These reporters to trace dynamic changes of intracellular protein activities have continuously transformed according to the various demands in biological studies. Along with that, light-inducible optogenetic technologies have offered scientists to perturb, control and analyze the function of intracellular machineries in spatiotemporal manner. In this review, we present an overview of the molecular strategies that have been exploited for producing genetically encoded protein reporters and various optogenetic modules. Finally, in particular, we discuss the current efforts for combined use of these reporters and optogenetic modules as a powerful tactic for the control and imaging of signaling events in cells and tissues.

Phytochrome-interacting factors have both shared and distinct biological roles.

red Phytochromes Review Background
Mol Cells, 16 May 2013 DOI: 10.1007/s10059-013-0135-5 Link to full text
Abstract: Phytochromes are plant photoreceptors that perceive red and far-red light. Upon the perception of light in Arabidopsis, light-activated phytochromes enter the nucleus and act on a set of interacting proteins, modulating their activities and thereby altering the expression levels of ∼10% of the organism's entire gene complement. Phytochromeinteracting factors (PIFs) belonging to Arabidopsis basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) subgroup 15 are key interacting proteins that play negative roles in light responses. Their activities are post-translationally countered by light-activated phytochromes, which promote the degradation of PIFs and directly or indirectly inhibit their binding to DNA. The PIFs share a high degree of similarity, but examinations of pif single and multiple mutants have indicated that they have shared and distinct functions in various developmental and physiological processes. These are believed to stem from differences in both intrinsic protein properties and their gene expression patterns. In an effort to clarify the basis of these shared and distinct functions, we compared recently published genome-wide ChIP data, developmental gene expression maps, and responses to various stimuli for the various PIFs. Based on our observations, we propose that the biological roles of PIFs stem from their shared and distinct DNA binding targets and specific gene expression patterns.
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