Author Archive

What’s HOT in Issue 10?

Nickel uptake in Escherichia coli

HOT article: Chivers et al., Metallomics, 2012, 4, 1043-1050

Take a look at these HOT articles, which feature in the latest issue of Metallomics.

In their Critical Review, Joseph Cotruvo Jr. and JoAnne Stubbe of MIT, Cambridge, USA, summarise the diversity of ways in which iron and manganese are substituted in similar or identical protein frameworks*

Critical Review: Metallation and mismetallation of iron and manganese proteins in vitro and in vivo: the class I ribonucleotide reductases as a case study
Joseph A. Cotruvo, Jr and JoAnne Stubbe
Metallomics
, 2012, 4, 1020-1036
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20142A

Peter Chivers and colleagues at Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, USA, identify the first nickel complex, Ni-(L-His)2, that is imported by microbes. The authors say this should allow more focused studies of the molecular recognition of nickel ions in the environment by organisms that require them for growth.

Identification of Ni-(L-His)2 as a substrate for NikABCDE-dependent nickel uptake in Escherichia coli
Peter T. Chivers, Erin L. Benanti, Vanessa Heil-Chapdelaine, Jeffrey S. Iwig and Jessica L. Rowe
Metallomics
, 2012, 4, 1043-1050
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20139A

Michael Linscheid of Humboldt University Berlin, Germany, and collaborators present a methodology to measure the complex adduct spectrum caused by the interaction of Cisplatin with in vivo DNA. The complementary use of molecular and elemental mass spectrometry, say the authors, provides new options to characterize and understand the biological consequences of the wide variety of detected Cisplatin–DNA adducts.

On the complexity and dynamics of in vivo Cisplatin–DNA adduct formation using HPLC/ICP-MS
Matthias Ziehe, Diego Esteban-Fernández, Ulrike Hochkirch, Jürgen Thomale and Michael W. Linscheid
Metallomics
, 2012, 4, 1098-1104
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20128C

These HOT articles will be free to access until 12 October – don’t forget to take a look at the covers for Issue 10 too.

Dr Wolfgang Maret

Metallomics Editorial Board Chair, Dr Wolfgang Maret

Also in this issue, an Editorial from the new Chair of our Editorial Board, Dr Wolfgang Maret of King’s College London, and Editor, Dr May Copsey. They look at the history of the field of metallomics, future opportunities for development and how the journal aims to support all researchers investigating the role of metals in the biological sciences.

Metallomics: whence and whither
Metallomics
, 2012, 4, 1017-1019
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT90041F

Follow Metallomics on Twitter: @metallomics

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Issue 10 online

Metallomics, 2012, Vol. 4, Issue 10, front cover

Front cover: Aitken et al., Metallomics, 2012, 4, 1051-1056

There are two colourful covers on the latest issue of Metallomics, highlighting the imaging of ruthenium in cells and the prediction of crosslinked protein cofactors.

On the front cover, Hugh Harris of the University of Adelaide, Australia, and his international collaborators use X-ray fluorescence imaging at two incident energies was used to reveal the intracellular distribution of ruthenium in single human cells.

They show that synchrotron-based XRF is capable of detecting intracellular ruthenium and can provide valuable insight into the metabolic pathway of ruthenium-based drugs.

Distinct cellular fates for KP1019 and NAMI-A determined by X-ray fluorescence imaging of single cells
Jade B. Aitken, Sumy Antony, Claire M. Weekley, Barry Lai, Leone Spiccia and Hugh H. Harris
Metallomics
, 2012, 4, 1051-1056
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20072D

On the inside front cover, David Benson from Calvin College, USA, and co-workers present a chemical bioinformatics method for the prediction of undiscovered crosslinked protein cofactors.

Metallomics, 2012, Vol. 4, Issue 10, inside front cover

Inside front cover: Martinie et al., Metallomics, 2012, 4, 1037-1042

The authors say their approach provides the first step in developing high throughput methods for the discovery of proteins that form crosslinked protein cofactors in vivo.

Identifying proteins that can form tyrosine-cysteine crosslinks
Ryan J. Martinie, Pahan I. Godakumbura, Elizabeth G. Porter, Anand Divakaran, Brandon J. Burkhart, John T. Wertz and David E. Benson
Metallomics
, 2012, 4, 1037-1042
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20093G

Both these cover article will be free to access for 6 weeks, and don’t forget to take a look at the other highlights from this issue, including HOT articles and an Editorial from the new Chair of our Editorial Board.

Follow Metallomics on Twitter: @metallomics

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Metal of the month: Vanadium

Vanadium periodic tableAs August comes to a close, it’s time for the latest Metal of the Month: vanadium. It was originally discovered by Andrés Manuel del Río, a Spanish-born Mexican mineralogist, in 1801, and is named after ‘Vanadis’, the old Norse name for the Scandinavian goddess Freyja.

Vanadium is an essential element for humans, although we require very little: less than 0.04 mg a day. Below are some papers from Metallomics looking at various aspects of vanadium biology, including its use in anti-diabetic drugs and its potential toxicity. These papers will all be free to access until 21 September, so do take a look.

Don’t forget you can find out more about vanadium (and any other metal of interest) via the RSC’s Visual Elements Periodic Table, and take a listen to the Chemistry World ‘Chemistry in its Element’ podcast.

Pistons

Vanadium is often used in piston rods

Gene expression changes in human lung cells exposed to arsenic, chromium, nickel or vanadium indicate the first steps in cancer
Hailey A. Clancy, Hong Sun, Lisa Passantino, Thomas Kluz, Alexandra Muñoz, Jiri Zavadil and Max Costa
Metallomics, 2012,4, 784-793
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20074K

Changes in the antioxidant defence and in selenium concentration in tissues of vanadium exposed rats
Cristina Sanchez-Gonzalez, Carmen Bermudez-Peña, Cristina E. Trenzado, Heidi Goenaga-Infante, María Montes-Bayon, Alfredo Sanz-Medel and Juan Llopis
Metallomics, 2012,4, 814-819
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20066J

Communication: Biotransformation of BMOV in the presence of blood serum proteins
Daniele Sanna, Linda Bíró, Péter Buglyó, Giovanni Micera and Eugenio Garribba
Metallomics, 2012,4, 33-36
DOI: 10.1039/C1MT00161B

Colour television set

Another use of vanadium is in colour television screens

Minireview: Recent advances into vanadyl, vanadate and decavanadate interactions with actin
S. Ramos, J. J. G. Moura and M. Aureliano
Metallomics, 2012,4, 16-22
DOI: 10.1039/C1MT00124H

Glucose lowering activity by oral administration of bis(allixinato)oxidovanadium(IV) complex in streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice and gene expression profiling in their skeletal muscles
Makoto Hiromura, Yusuke Adachi, Megumi Machida, Masakazu Hattori and Hiromu Sakurai
Metallomics, 2009,1, 92-100
DOI: 10.1039/B815384C

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Biometals 2012 – 15-19 July, Brussels, Belgium

Brussels: Grand Place/Grote Markt

Grand Place/Grote Markt in Brussels. Unfortunately it wasn't quite this sunny every day during the conference!

A couple of weeks ago I made the most of the UK’s rail connection to mainland Europe and hopped on the Eurostar to attend Biometals 2012 in Brussels. This conference takes place every two years and alternates between the two sides of the Atlantic; the historic capital of Belgium certainly made a contrast to the wonderful desert landscape we experienced in Tuscon, Arizona in 2010!

The meeting, hosted at Vrije Universiteit Brussel, covered a broad range of topics related to the role of metals in biological systems, from iron uptake to copper homeostasis, and from metalloproteins to plant-metal interactions. Delegates came from across the globe to present their work and network with colleagues, and I was certainly pleased to see some familiar faces from other meetings.

There were two particularly poignant mentions for members of the community who have sadly passed away in recent times: Ivano Bertini and Jorge Crosa. The Ivor Stojiljkovic Award was posthumously presented to Jorge, and his post-doctoral colleague Hiraoki Naka gave a talk on some of the recent work from the group. Meeting Chair Pierre Cornelis also gave a fitting tribute with some excellent pictures from Jorge’s life. I was lucky enough to meet Jorge at Biometals in 2010 – he was a great scientist, a charming man, and will be missed by his peers and colleagues.

Our thanks to the organisers for having Metallomics as part of this great conference, in particular the local committee: Pierre Cornelis, Joris Messens, Max Mergeay, Nathalie Verbruggen, Jan Colpaert and Ruddy Wattiez.

Many of the speakers at Biometals 2012 have published with Metallomics and with other RSC journals; we’ve highlighted some of their work in a temporary collection of papers which you can find here. These will all be free to access until 21 August 2012, so please take a look.

The articles below are a taster of what features in the collection.

(more…)

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Issue 8 now online

Metal imaging in neurodegenerative diseases

Front cover: Bourassa and Miller, Metallomics, 2012,4, 721-738

The latest issue of Metallomics is now online, with not one, not two but four covers:

Our colourful front cover features an article from Lisa Miller of the National Synchrotron Light Source at Brookhaven National Laboratory (New York, USA) and her Ph.D. student at Stony Brook University, Megan Bourassa. Their Critical Review highlights the advances in neurodegenerative disease research facilitated by metal imaging techniques.

Critical Review: Metal imaging in neurodegenerative diseases
Megan W. Bourassa and Lisa M. Miller
Metallomics, 2012, 4, 721-738
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20052J

The inside front cover comes from Martin Stillman and colleagues at Western University, London, Canada. They look at the effects of metal and ring periphery substitution in the Isd protein system involved in heme transport in the pathogenic bacterium Staphylococcus aureus.

Insight into blocking heme transfer by exploiting molecular interactions in the core Isd heme transporters IsdA-NEAT, IsdC-NEAT, and IsdE of Staphylococcus aureus
Michael T. Tiedemann,  Tyler B. J. Pinter and Martin J. Stillman
Metallomics, 2012, 4, 751-760
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20067H

Blocking heme transfer in Staphylococcus aureus

Inside front cover: Tiedemann et al., Metallomics, 2012, 4, 751-760

On the inside back cover, a paper from Christophe Biot and co-workers at the University of Lille, who used two ruthenocenic bioprobes to study the mechanism of the antimalarial drug candidate ferroquine.

Opening up the advantages of the ruthenocenic bioprobes of ferroquine: distribution and localization in Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes
Christophe Biot,  Faustine Dubar,  Jamal Khalife and Christian Slomianny
Metallomics, 2012, 4, 780-783
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20063E

And finally, on the outside back cover, Ruth Valentine and colleagues at Newcastle University present new information on the functional activity of the zinc transporter ZnT10.

Efflux function, tissue-specific expression and intracellular trafficking of the Zn transporter ZnT10 indicate roles in adult Zn homeostasis
Helen J. Bosomworth,  Jared K. Thornton,  Lisa J. Coneyworth,  Dianne Ford and Ruth A. Valentine
Metallomics, 2012, 4, 771-779
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20088K

All these cover articles will be free to access for 6 weeks – enjoy!


Metallomics, 2012, Issue 8, back covers

Back covers: Biot et al. (L) and Bosomworth et al. (R)

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Ivano Bertini 1940-2012

Ivano Bertini

Ivano Bertini 1940-2012

It is with sadness that we pass on the news that our Advisory Board member Professor Ivano Bertini of the University of Florence, Italy, passed away on Saturday 7th July.

Ivano was a pioneer in the field of NMR spectroscopy, making important advances in protein NMR spectroscopy, in particular of paramagnetic metalloproteins. We are honoured to have had his support as a Board member, and share our condolences with his family, friends and colleagues.

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Arsenic-resistant bacterium still needs phosphate for growth

Two new papers published in Science have contributed to the continuing debate on ongoing discussion on the role of arsenic in the bacterial isolate GFAJ-1.

In December 2010, Felisa Wolfe-Simon and colleagues published a paper, also in Science, which proposed that GFAJ-1 could substitute small amounts of phosphorus in its DNA with arsenic. This claim would have significant implications for our understanding of life, since all known forms of life on Earth typically use oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, phosphorus and sulfur.

Now, groups from ETH Zürich, and the University of British Columbia and Princeton University have conducted independent studies which show that GFAJ-1 cannot substitute arsenic for phosphorus to survive.

The ETH Zürich group, including JAAS Editorial Board Chair Detlef Günther, combined physiological experiments with ICP-OES and ICP-MS to provide evidence that whilst GFAJ-1 is highly resistant to arsenate, but still requires phosphate for growth. Rosie Redfield of the University of British Columbia and collaborators at Princeton demonstrated that GFAJ-1 does not require arsenate for growth in media with any level of phosphate, and used mass spectrometry to show no detectable covalently bound arsenate to its DNA.

GFAJ-1 Is an Arsenate-Resistant, Phosphate-Dependent Organism
Tobias J. Erb, Patrick Kiefer, Bodo Hattendorf, Detlef Günther, Julia A. Vorholt
DOI: 10.1126/science.1218455

Absence of Detectable Arsenate in DNA from Arsenate-Grown GFAJ-1 Cells
Marshall Louis Reaves, Sunita Sinha, Joshua D. Rabinowitz, Leonid Kruglyak, Rosemary J. Redfield
DOI: 10.1126/science.1219861

The discussion will undoubtedly go on, with many further avenues for research. If you’re on Twitter, follow us, and get the latest on this story using #arseniclife

Not as controversial, but still of interest, take a look at some recent content in Metallomics on arsenic:

Perspective: Carcinogenic metals and the epigenome: understanding the effect of nickel, arsenic, and chromium
Yana Chervona, Adriana Arita and Max Costa
Metallomics, 2012,4, 619-627
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20033C

Perspective: Arsenic metabolism and thioarsenicals
Kanwal Rehman and Hua Naranmandura
Metallomics, 2012, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT00181K

Minireview: Genetic and epigenetic effects of environmental arsenicals
Toby G. Rossman and Catherine B. Klein
Metallomics, 2011,3, 1135-1141
DOI: 10.1039/C1MT00074H

Selenium effects on arsenic cytotoxicity and protein phosphorylation in human kidney cells using chip-based nanoLC-MS/MS
Orkun Alp, Yaofang Zhang, Edward J. Merino and Joseph A. Caruso
Metallomics, 2011,3, 482-490
DOI: 10.1039/C0MT00110D

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Metal of the month: manganese

Manganese from Visual Elements © Murray Robertson 2011

Murray Robertson's image for manganese; it reflects the origin of name of the element in the form of an antique electro magnet and its importance as a food supplement to grazing animals.

June’s metal is manganese - used to harden steel and make alloys, but also an essential element in biology. We obtain it from foods such as nuts, bran, wholegrain cereals, tea and parsley, and it’s added to animal feed and plant fertilizer too. It’s known to be involved in many biological processes but much exciting research is ongoing to try and elucidate the details of its various roles. Below, we’ve collected together some recent Metallomics content featuring aspects of manganese biology, including its homeostasis in pathogens, involvement in mammalian kidney cells, and its relationship with prions. All these papers will be free to access until 29 June.

Learn more about manganese via the RSC Visual Elements Periodic Table, and the Chemistry World Chemistry in its Element podcast. And if you work in the area of manganese biology, we hope you will submit your next paper to Metallomics.

Reduction of liver manganese concentration in response to the ingestion of excess zinc: identification using metallomic analyses
Tomoya Fujimura, Tomohiro Terachi, Masayuki Funaba and Tohru Matsui
Metallomics, 2012, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20100C

Roles of ZIP8, ZIP14, and DMT1 in transport of cadmium and manganese in mouse kidney proximal tubule cells
Hitomi Fujishiro, Yu Yano, Yukina Takada, Maya Tanihara and Seiichiro Himeno
Metallomics, 2012, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT20024D

Manganese

Although an important aspect of biological systems, exposure to manganese dust, fumes and compounds is to be avoided as it is a suspected carcinogen

Effects of manganese and arsenic species on the level of energy related nucleotides in human cells
Julia Bornhorst, Franziska Ebert, Hanna Lohren, Hans-Ulrich Humpf, Uwe Karst and Tanja Schwerdtle
Metallomics, 2012, 4, 297-306
DOI: 10.1039/C2MT00164K

Fast and low sample consuming quantification of manganese in cell nutrient solutions by flow injection ICP-QMS
Christoph Alexander Wehe, Julia Bornhorst, Michael Holtkamp, Michael Sperling, Hans-Joachim Galla, Tanja Schwerdtle and Uwe Karst
Metallomics, 2011, 3, 1291-1296
DOI: 10.1039/C1MT00170A
From themed issue Third International Symposium on Metallomics, Münster, Germany 2011

New water-soluble Mn-porphyrin with catalytic activity for superoxide dismutation and peroxynitrite decomposition
Shoichiro Asayama, Takumi Nakajima and Hiroyoshi Kawakami
Metallomics, 2011, 3, 744-748
DOI: 10.1039/C1MT00005E
From themed issue Metallomics in Japan

Manganese is found in foodstuffs such as nuts

We obtain our required manganese from foods such as nuts

Critical Review: Prions and manganese: A maddening beast
David R. Brown
Metallomics, 2011, 3, 229-238
DOI: 10.1039/C0MT00047G
From themed issue Metals in Neurodegenerative Disease

Communication: Interplay between manganese and zinc homeostasis in the human pathogen Streptococcus pneumoniae
Faith E. Jacobsen, Krystyna M. Kazmierczak, John P. Lisher, Malcolm E. Winkler and David P. Giedroc
Metallomics, 2011, 3, 38-41
DOI: 10.1039/C0MT00050G

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Metal of the month: copper

Copper pipesOur (belated) Metal of the Month for April is copper, a metal so commonplace in our lives that we probably forget its importance.  Historically, copper was the first metal to be worked by people, and the discovery that it could be hardened with a little tin to form the alloy bronze gave its name to the Bronze Age.  The biggest industrial usage of copper is in electrical equipment such as wiring and motors due to its great ability to conduct both heat and electricity.

But this is Metallomics, so what about biology?

(more…)

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Biometals 2012 conference registration now open

Biometals 2012 will take place in at Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium, 15-19 July 2012.

Online registration and abstract submission are now open via www.biometals2012.be

Early registration and abstract submission deadline is 15 April, so book your place now!  Our Deputy Editor , Vibhuti Patel, will be attending on behalf of Metallomics.

Biometals 2012, Brussels, Belgium, 15-19 July

The scientific committee includes our Advisory Board members Al Crumbliss and Wolfgang Maret.  Also involved is Chris Rensing, who was Guest Editor on our Metal Toxicity themed issue, and many researchers who have published with Metallomics.

Read some of their papers here

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