Alteration of argyrophilic nucleolar organizer region associated (Ag-NOR) proteins in apoptosis-induced human salivary gland cells and human oral squamous carcinoma cells

Yasuhiro Morimoto, Shinji Kito, Takeshi Ohba, Hiroyuki Morimoto, Hirohiko Okamura, Tatsuji Haneji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The level of argyrophilic nucleolar organizer regions (AgNORs) and AgNOR-associated proteins (Ag-NOR proteins) varies with cell activity, including ribosomal biogenesis occurring in proliferating cells. Proteins associated with some AgNORs are detected by a specific silver staining. To investigate a possible relationship between apoptosis and the AgNORs or Ag-NOR proteins, we examined the changes of AgNORs and Ag-NOR proteins during apoptosis in a human salivary gland cell line, HSG cells, and a human oral squamous carcinoma cell line, SCC-25 cells. Apoptosis was induced by treatment of HSG and SCC-25 cells with okadaic acid. Proteins prepared from HSG and SCC-25 cells treated with varying concentrations of okadaic acid (OA) were subjected to sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) followed by transferring to transfer membranes and staining for Ag-NOR proteins by modified Western blot analysis. Four major bands (110 kDa, 43 kDa, 39kDa, and 37 kDa) were detected in the proteins obtained from the control cells. The level of the 110-kDa protein decreased in the proteins prepared from OA-induced apoptotic cells; however, the reaction intensity of the other three bands was changed in apoptotic cells. An additional band of an 80-kDa Ag-NOR protein appeared and increased in the apoptotic cells. Cellular fractionation of HSG cells and SCC-25 cells was done with or without apoptotic induction. An 80-kDa Ag-NOR protein was detected in the nuclear fraction prepared from the apoptotic cells, while the 110-kDa protein decreased in the nuclear fraction of these cells. The 110-kDa Ag-NOR protein may be nucleolin (C23) as deduced from its AgNOR staining features, including molecular weight. The 80-kDa protein may be the cleavage product of the 110-kDa protein. In the cell-free apoptotic system, in which intact nuclei of HSG cells were incubated with the cytosol fraction of apoptotic HSG and SCC-25 cells, the 80-kDa Ag-NOR protein was detected in nuclei incubated with the cytosol fraction of apoptotic cells, while the level of the 110-kDa protein decreased. The changes of Ag-NOR proteins in nuclei prepared from SCC-25 cells incubated with cytosol fractions prepared from HSG and SCC-25 cells were identical to those of the HSG cells. The alternation of AgNORs in apoptosis-induced HSG cells was also examined using double staining with Hoechst 33342 and silver nitrate. Hoechst staining revealed typical apoptotic nuclei, which exhibited highly fluorescent condensed chromatin in OA-treated HSG Cells. Silver grains representing AgNORs were not detected in the cells undergoing apoptosis. The dual-imposition view confirmed that AgNORs, which are visible as dots in nucleoli in the control cells, disappeared from the apoptotic nuclei of HSG cells. Our results indicate that the 110-kDa nucleolar Ag-NOR protein is associated with apoptosis and is cleaved during apoptosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-199
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Oral Pathology and Medicine
Volume30
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2001

Keywords

  • Ag-NOR proteins
  • Apoptosis
  • HSG cells
  • SCC-25 cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Oral Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Cancer Research
  • Periodontics

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