Lymphocytes have a finite and predictable proliferative life span in culture similar to that observed in fibroblasts. In general, the senescence of human fibroblasts is inevitable and irreversible, but their proliferative life span can be extended by certain DNA tumor virus oncogenes, such as the large T antigen of the SV40 virus. Here, we show that human T lymphocytes (HTL) can be stably transfected with SV40 large T and that expression of T antigen extended the life span of T cell cultures.
SV40 T-antigen-expressing human cells generally have an extension of lifespan until a period called "crisis" begins. On rare occasions a clone of cells emerges from the population in crisis and gives rise to an immortalized cell line. The present study compares the frequency of immortalization of cells from two different human lineages, lung fibroblasts and mammary epithelial cells.
Normal human breast epithelial cells were transfected with expression vectors containing the p53 gene mutated at either codon 143, 175, 248 or 273, or by infection with a recombinant retroviral vector containing the p53 gene mutated at codons 143, 175, 248, or 273. The breast epithelial cells were monitored for extension of in vitro lifespan and immortalization. Expression of some, but not all, p53 mutants resulted in an extension of in vitro lifespan.
This study addresses the question of whether loss of p16INK4 expression contributes to the immortalization of human cells. In vitro immortalization usually proceeds through two phases. In the first phase (lifespan extension), cells continue proliferating and their telomeres continue shortening beyond the point at which normal cells become senescent. In the second phase (immortalization), the cells activate a telomere maintenance mechanism and acquire an unlimited proliferative potential.
Reactive oxygen (RO) has been identified as an important effector in ageing and lifespan determination. The specific cell types, however, in which oxidative damage acts to limit lifespan of the whole organism have not been explicitly identified. The association between mutations in the gene encoding the oxygen radical metabolizing enzyme CuZn superoxide dismutase (SOD1) and loss of motorneurons in the brain and spinal cord that occurs in the life-shortening paralytic disease, Familial Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (FALS; ref.
Transfection of nearly senesced human fibroblasts with plasmids encoding HPV16 E6 protein or dominant-negative p53 mutants greatly increased their colony-forming ability. Isolated colonies with these plasmids showed extension of lifespan compared to those with a control plasmid. These data demonstrate that p53 plays a major role in senescence in normal human fibroblasts.
The yeast Sir2 protein mediates chromatin silencing through an intrinsic NAD-dependent histone deacetylase activity. Sir2 is a conserved protein and was recently shown to regulate lifespan extension both in budding yeast and worms. Here, we show that SIRT1, the human Sir2 homolog, is recruited to the promyelocytic leukemia protein (PML) nuclear bodies of mammalian cells upon overexpression of either PML or oncogenic Ras (Ha-rasV12). SIRT1 binds and deacetylates p53, a component of PML nuclear bodies, and it can repress p53-mediated transactivation.
Retroviral infection of hTERT, the catalytic component of telomerase, into BJ fibroblasts (population doubling 28) resulted in reconstitution of telomerase activity, telomere maintenance, and extension of in vitro lifespan. The hTERT-infected cells also exhibited increased growth rate and colony forming efficiency relative to controls, while remaining contact-inhibited and maintaining a p53-mediated damage response following gamma-irradiation.
PURPOSE: To investigate the migratory and contractile behavior of isolated human corneal fibroblasts in fibrillar collagen matrices. METHODS: A telomerase-infected, extended-lifespan human corneal fibroblast cell line (HTK) was transfected by using a vector for enhanced green fluorescent protein (GFP)-alpha-actinin. Cells were plated at low density on top of or within 100-microm-thick fibrillar collagen lattices. After 18 hours to 7 days, time-lapse imaging was performed.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Tissue engineering holds the promise of replacing damaged or diseased tissues and organs. The use of autologous donor cells is often not feasible because of the limited replicative lifespan of cells, particularly those derived from elderly patients. Proliferative arrest can be overcome by the ectopic expression of telomerase via human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) gene transfection. To study the efficacy and safety of this potentially valuable technology, we used differentiated vascular smooth muscle cells (SMC) and vascular tissue engineering as a model system.