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CNRS UPR 3212
Institut des Neurosciences Cellulaires et Intégratives
Institute of Cellular and Integrative Neurosciences
Communication & Networks in the Nervous System
Team "Intracellular membrane trafficking in the nervous system"

Molecular mechanisms of exocytosis-endocytosis coupling in neuroendocrine cells and their implication in cancer

Project leader: Stéphane GASMAN

 

Coupling between exocytosis and endocytosis in neuroendocrine cells

Secretory cells homeostasis requires a precise balance of their intracellular vesicular trafficking events. Our research aims at deciphering the molecular mechanisms coupling secretory vesicle exocytosis to the subsequent endocytosis in neurons and neuroendocrine cells. In particular, we seek to understand how the granule membrane components are maintained together at the plasma membrane during and after exocytosis and to identify the molecular pathways triggering and regulating secretory vesicles endocytosis. Actin dynamics, phospholipids metabolism and Rho GTPases signalling, which appear to play an essential role in both exo- and endocytosis, are attractive candidates currently under investigation in our laboratory.

figure

 

Physiopathological aspect of secretion in neuroendocrine cancers

 

illustration
Pheochromocytoma:
neuroendocrine tumour arising from chromaffin cells in the adrenal medulla.

Many cancers, especially among the neuroendocrine tumours, are often associated with a dysfunction of hormones, neurotransmitters or metabolites secretion. While this aspect is well known to pathologists, it has never been explored at the molecular level. Our general objective is to identify regulatory mechanisms of exocytosis that participate to the morphological and functional changes observed in tumoural cells. In fine, we aim to uncover the potential impact of cell secretion in neuroendocrine tumors initiation and/or development. As a model, we are using pheochromocytoma, a neuroendocrine tumour arising from the adrenal medulla that over-secretes catecholamine from chromaffin cells.

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