- Monocarboxylate transporter 4 (MCT4) is an H+-coupled symporter highly expressed in metastatic tumors and at inflammatory sites undergoing hypoxia or the Warburg effect. At these sites, extracellular lactate contributes to malignancy and immune response evasion. Intriguingly, at 30–40 mm, the reported Km of MCT4 for lactate is more than 1 order of magnitude higher than physiological or even pathological lactate levels. MCT4 is not thought to transport pyruvate. Here we have characterized cell lactate and pyruvate dynamics using the FRET sensors Laconic and Pyronic.
- Nitric oxide (NO) is an intercellular messenger involved in multiple bodily functions. Prolonged NO exposure irreversibly inhibits respiration by covalent modification of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase, a phenomenon of pathological relevance. However, the speed and potency of NO's metabolic effects at physiological concentrations are incompletely characterized. To this end, we set out to investigate the metabolic effects of NO in cultured astrocytes from mice by taking advantage of the high spatiotemporal resolution afforded by genetically encoded Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) nanosensors.
- The Wnt signaling pathway is critical for a number of functions in the central nervous system, including regulation of the synaptic cleft structure and neuroprotection against injury. Deregulation of Wnt signaling has been associated with several brain pathologies, including Alzheimer's disease. In recent years, it has been suggested that the Wnt pathway might act as a central integrator of metabolic signals from peripheral organs to the brain, which would represent a new role for Wnt signaling in cell metabolism.