Telopodes of telocytes are influenced in vitro by redox conditions and ageing

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Telocytes (TCs) are a novel cell type identified among interstitial cells in various organs. TCs are characterized by very long cell processes (tens to hundreds micrometres) named telopodes (Tps) with uneven calibre: dilations (podoms) and very thin segments (podomers). However, little is known about the factors which influence Tps conformation. Recently, extracellular matrix proteins were found to influence Tps extension, adherence and spreading. Here, we show that oxidative stress and ageing influence formation of new Tps of TCs cultivated from human non-pregnant myometrium. Using real-time videomicroscopy, we found that ageing the TCs to passage 21 increased the ratio of Tps/TC number with about 50 %, whereas oxidative stress hindered formation of new Tps in both aged and young TCs (passage 7). Under oxidative stress, newly formed cell processes were up to 25 % shorter. Migration pathway length was decreased by 30–40 % for both young and aged cells in an oxidative stress environment. Contrary, addition of N-acetyl cysteine in cell culture medium shifted TCs morphology to a long and slender profile. In conclusion, we showed that TCs specific morphology in vitro is influenced by oxidative status balance, as well as ageing.

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This work was partially supported by Grants of the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research, CNCS—UEFISCDI, project number “350/2012 PN-II-ID-PCE-2011-3-0134”, by Romanian Ministry of Education, Grants no. PN-II-09.33-02.05, PN-II-265/2014 and by the Sectorial Operational Programme Human Resources Development (SOPHRD), and financed by the European Social Fund and the Romanian Government under the contract number POSDRU/159/1.5/S/141531.

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Correspondence to Laurentiu M. Popescu.

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Laurentiu M. Popescu—Deceased.

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Enciu, A., Popescu, L.M. Telopodes of telocytes are influenced in vitro by redox conditions and ageing. Mol Cell Biochem 410, 165–174 (2015).

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  • Telocytes
  • Telopodes
  • Ageing
  • Oxidative stress
  • Cell prolongations
  • N-acetyl cysteine
  • Cell migration