• Yang Liu

      Articles written in Journal of Biosciences

    • Signatures of positive selection at hemopexin (PEX) domain of matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) gene

      Yang Liu Yang Zhao Chunlei Lu Maobin Fu Tonghai Dou Xiaoming Tan

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      Matrix metalloproteinases-9 (MMP-9) is an important cancer-associated, zinc-dependent endopeptidase. To investigate the natural selection hypothesis of MMP-9, the orthologous sequences from 12 vertebrates were compared and a molecular evolution analysis was performed. Results suggest that amino acid residues present in the middle region of the protein are more selectively constrained, whereas amino acid residues in the C-terminal region of the MM~P-9 protein including exon 13 showed lowest conservation level in non-primate species, suggesting that it is an exon with fast evolving rate compared to the others analyzed. InterProScan analysis shows that exon 13 was located in hemopexin (PEX) domain of MM~P-9. Positive selection was detected in PEX domain of MMP-9 protein between human and other species, which indicates that selective pressure may play a role in shaping the function of MM~P-9 in the course of evolution.

    • N-3-(oxododecanoyl)-L-homoserine lactone suppresses dendritic cell maturation by upregulating the long noncoding RNA NRIR

      XUAN ZHANG YANG LIU YANG LU SONG LI JIANPING LIU YUNYAN ZHANG LINA WANG MO LI YANFEN LUO WEIZHENG ZHANG CHA CHEN YOUQIANG LI

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      N-3-(oxododecanoyl)-L-homoserine lactone (3-O-C12-HSL), a small bacterial signaling molecule secreted byPseudomonas aeruginosa (P. aeruginosa), can block dendritic cell (DC) maturation and participate in immuneescape, but the underlying mechanism is unclear. We speculate that regulation of DC maturation and functionby lncRNAs may be the mechanism by which 3-O-C12-HSL inhibits the immune response. We found that3-O-C12-HSL increased the expression level of the lncRNA NRIR, impeding monocyte-derived dendritic cell(Mo-DC) maturation. In addition, we observed the effect of NRIR on the expression of CD40, CD80, HLA-DRand IL-6. NRIR overexpression significantly reduced the expression of Mo-DC surface markers, while 3-OC12-HSL did not significantly reduce the expression of Mo-DC surface markers after NRIR knockdown.These results indicate that 3-O-C12-HSL indeed affects the differentiation and maturation of Mo-DCs throughNRIR. IL-6 stimulates T cell proliferation and activation, and we found that high NRIR expression reduced IL-6 levels. However, under NRIR knockdown, 3-O-C12-HSL did not decrease IL-6 expression, suggesting that3-O-C12-HSL may affect T cell activation through NRIR. This study is the first to elucidate the important roleof a lncRNA in the mechanism of 3-O-C12-HSL activity. It also provides new ideas regarding P. aeruginosainfection pathogenesis.

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