I am a neuro-focused cell biologist specializing in the actin cytoskeleton, the cell’s secretory pathway and the protein modification N-terminal acetylation - and I have an interest in neurodegenerative diseases.
CURRENTLY I WORK WITH
How do protein modifications affect our brain?
One of the proteins that I characterized during my doctorate in the Arnesen lab was not extensively described at that time. It became clear that this enzyme had a role in the cells' secretory system and in addition there were some vague indications that it could be very important for nerve cells, something I took a special interest in since I have a background in molecular neuroscience from the Bramham lab. Through a new collaboration with neurologists at UCL, I am now uncovering clear evidence that this protein has a critical function in the brain. I am currently studying cells that are isolated from patients. These patients suffer from hereditary neurological disease because they lack a specific type of protein modification. This is incredibly exciting because we are on a track where it may be possible to describe how molecular mechanisms caused by a protein inside the brain cells have a crucial neurobiological significance. There is reason to believe that there may be a link between NAT enzymes and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's. This is something I am passionate about studying further. The incidence of neurodegenerative diseases is increasing, while the treatment has major challenges. There is therefore an urgent need for research in this area. I hope that I, through my combined specialization in NAT enzymes and molecular neuroscience, will be able to contribute to filling this knowledge gap.
Could the lack of actin N-terminal modification in cancer be linked to an increased risk of metastasis?
During my postdoctoral period, I was involved in characterizing an enzyme, called NAA80, which modifies the actin N-terminus. Actin is one of the most abundant proteins in our cells and it is the building block of the microfilament cell skeleton. This cytoskeleton is not rigid and static as the name might suggest, but is extremely dynamic and this constant change is, amongst other things, the basis of cell motility. Normally, in a fully developed organism, the motility of our cells is kept in check so that a liver cell maintains its position in the liver and a kidney cell maintains its position in the kidney. But in cancer, the regulation can be disturbed and this can cause cancer cells to start invading neighboring tissues and migrate to other places in the body, so-called metastasis. I got particularly interested in this process when we discovered that by removing the NAA80 enzyme, cell properties changed to become hypermobile. Recently, together with students, I have fine-tuned tools to study this process as well as further described that the Golgi apparatus is fragmented in NAA80-lacking cells.
Henriette's research communication and media coverage
Research from home, UiB article about work together with MSc students Monica Hellesvik and Hanne Øye
From ERASMUS internship to published paper, UiB article about work together with MSc student Tobias B. Beigl
A Jack of all Trades in Cancer Cells, UiB article promoting review in MolCell 2019
Uncovering the secrets of cellular motility, InCyte blog interview
Hyper-motile cells revealed with IncuCyte, InCytes Publication newsletter
Putting a brake on cell movement, UiB article
TIRFing the Master’s degree to shore , UiB article (as main supervisor for Monica Hellesvik)
Practicing pitching their research in front of a camera in Momentum career program for outstanding young researchers, UiB article
Faculty of Medicine faculty day - Received, on behalf of all coauthors in the Arnesen lab, award for best publication in 2018 for the back-to-back articles in PNAS 2018, UiB article MedFak and UiB article IBM
Cellular espionage in the NAT cell lab, UiB article on work on novel imaging tecnique together with students
Protein acetylation gets some respect—A commentary by Henriette Aksnes, Cell Reports blog
Best poster award, NBS contact meeting 2019, UiB article
Tension release by N-terminal acetylation, UiB article
Protein function can be revealed by microscopy, UiB article
Hangin’ out at the Golgi, UiB article
Cellular GPS-system reveals new territory for an influential enzyme family, UiB article
Honoured with ZONA award for best PhD 2014, UiB article
New PhD press release, UiB article
Research and laboratory training for project assignments at Master's level.
Guestlecturer under the theme Modelorganisms.
Research and laboratory training for project assignments at Bachelor's level.
2021– Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Therese S. Hjellvoll
2021– Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Ajia R. Pennavaria
2021– Main supervisor for PhD candidate, Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Hanne Øye
2020 – Co-supervisor for PhD candidate, Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Monica Hellesvik
2020– Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Alessia Caiella
2020– Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Liv S. Krogstad
2020– Co-supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biological sciences, UiB. Ine Kjosås
2019–20 Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Kristine H. Furre
2019–20 Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB. Hanne Øye
2018–19 Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Biological Sciences, UiB, Monica Hellesvik
2019–19 Main supervisor for MSc thesis stud., UiB/Universität Stuttgart, Tobias B. Beigl
2018–18 Main supervisor for MSc ERASMUS stud., Dept. of Biomedicine, UiB, Tobias B. Beigl
2014–17 Co-supervisor for PhD candidate, Dept. of Molecular biology, UiB, Marianne Goris
2013–16 Co-supervisor for PhD candidate, Dept. of Molecular biology, UiB, Sylvia Varland
2012–16 Co-supervisor for PhD candidate, Dept. of Molecular biology, UiB, Camilla Osberg
2011–12 Co-supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Molecular biology, UiB, Camilla Osberg
2011–12 Co-supervisor for MSc thesis stud., Dept. of Molecular biology, UiB, Sylvia Varland
2011–12 Co-supervisor for BSc stud., Dept. of Molecular biology, UiB, Eilen Henriksen
- 2021. Missense NAA20 variants impairing the NatB protein N-terminal acetyltransferase cause autosomal recessive developmental delay, intellectual disability, and microcephaly. Genetics in Medicine.
- 2020. N-terminal acetylation of actin by NAA80 is essential for structural integrity of the Golgi apparatus. Experimental Cell Research. 1-9.
- 2020. Exploiting the potential of commercial digital holographic microscopy by combining it with 3D matrix cell culture assays. Scientific Reports. 1-14.
- 2020. Efficient and crucial quality control of HAP1 cell ploidy status. Biology Open.
- 2018. NAA80 is actin’s N-terminal acetyltransferase and regulates cytoskeleton assembly and cell motility. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 4399-4404.
- 2018. N-terminal acetylation levels are maintained during acetyl-CoA deficiency in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Molecular & Cellular Proteomics. 2309-2323.
- 2018. Actin polymerization and cell motility are affected by NAA80-mediated posttranslational N-terminal acetylation of actin. Communicative & Integrative Biology.
- 2017. Molecular determinants of the N-Terminal acetyltransferase Naa60 anchoring to the Golgi membrane. Journal of Biological Chemistry. 6821-6837.
- 2016. Microscopy-based Saccharomyces cerevisiae complementation model reveals functional conservation and redundancy of N-terminal acetyltransferases. Scientific Reports. 10 pages.
- 2015. Molecular, cellular, and physiological significance of N-terminal acetylation. International Review of Cell and Molecular Biology. 267-305.
- 2015. An organellar Nα-acetyltransferase, Naa60, acetylates cytosolic n termini of transmembrane proteins and maintains golgi integrity. Cell reports. 1362-1374.
- 2013. N-Terminal Acetylation by NatC Is Not a General Determinant for Substrate Subcellular Localization in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. PLOS ONE. 7 pages.
- 2011. The human N-Alpha-Acetyltransferase 40 (hNaa40p/hNatD) is conserved from yeast and N-terminally acetylates histones H2A and H4. PLOS ONE. 11 pages.
- 2015. Metabolic Regulation of N-Terminal Acetylation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
- 2020. Spying on the cells using holographic live cell imaging - revealing increased metastatic potential for cancer cells lacking NAA80 (Talk by Monica Hellesvik selected from Abstracts) .
- 2020. Efficient and crucial quality control of HAP1 cell ploidy status (Talk selected from abstracts).
- 2019. Knockout of the posttranslational actin modifier NAA80/NatH cause Golgi fragmentation (Talk selected from abstract).
- 2019. Actin N-terminal acetylation impacts Golgi structural integrity (Talk by Tobias B. Beigl selected from abstracts).
- 2015. Holding it together: Naa60 at the Golgi. OncoTarget. 15726-15727.
- 2021. Uncovering NAA60’s Role in the Nervous System -Primary familial brain disease and beyond.
- 2021. The effect of N-terminal acetylation on α-Synuclein’s pathogenicity in Parkinson’s disease.
- 2020. The Impact of N-terminal Acetylation on Actin Polymerization and Cell Migration.
- 2020. Impact of Actin N-terminal Acetylation on Small Cell Lung Carcinoma Cell Invasiveness.
- 2009. Time-lapse imaging of Arc/Arg3.1 protein degradation in hippocampal neurons using the novel photoconvertible fluorescent protein Dendra2.
- 2014. N-terminal acetyltransferases NatC and NatF: cellular functions and substrates.
- 2020. The Impact of NAA80 and Actin N-terminal Acetylation on Drug Sensitivity.
- 2020. Spying on the cells using holographic live cell imaging - revealing increased metastatic potential for cancer cells lacking NAA80 .
- 2020. Impact of N‐terminal acetylation on cancer cell invasiveness.
- 2020. Efficient and crucial quality control of HAP1 cell ploidy status.
- 2019. NAA80 KO cells – Fast and Furious? Actin N-terminal acetylation by NatH/NAA80 affects cell adhesion and early cell spreading.
- 2019. Knockout of the posttranslational actin modifier NAA80/NatH cause Golgi fragmentation.
- 2019. Impact of actin N-terminal acetylation.
- 2019. Actin N-terminal acetylation impacts Golgi structural integrity.
- 2018. Saccharomyces cerevisiae growth assays and proteomics reveal functional conservation, redundancy and substrates of N-terminal acetyltransferases.
- 2018. N-terminal acetylation of actin by NAA80 impacts cell migration.
- 2018. Discovery of NAA80 as actin’s N-terminal acetyltransferase – a novel regulator of cytoskeleton dynamics.
- 2018. Actin Acetylation.
- 2016. Dynamic aspects of protein N-terminal acetylation in response to changes in nutrient availability.
- 2015. Targeting of membrane proteins by means of N-terminal acetylation.
- 2015. N-terminal acetylation meets the organelles.
- 2015. Metabolic Regulation of Protein N-terminal Acetylation.
- 2015. Evolutionary conservation of N-terminal acetyltransferase C (NatC) from yeast to human.
- 2012. N-terminal acetyltransferase 30 (Naa30p/NatC) - Phenotypes of S. Cerevisiae naa30Δ strains.
- 2012. ISOLATION OF SECRETED PROTEINS FROM YEAST AND MAMMALIAN CELL CULTURE.
- 2012. GLUCOSE DEPENDENT DYNAMIC N-TERMINAL ACETYLATION IN SACCHAROMYCES CEREVISIAE.
- 2012. Dynamicity and functional implications of N-terminal acetylation in S. cerevisiae.
- 2012. Depletion of the N-terminal acetyltransferase hNaa30p disrupts Golgi integrity.
- 2009. Time-lapse imaging of Arc protein degradation and synthesis in hippocampal neurons.
- 2019. Co-translational, post-translational, and non-catalytic roles of N-terminal acetyltransferases. Molecular Cell. 1097-1114.
- 2016. First things first: Vital protein marks by N-terminal acetyltransferases. TIBS -Trends in Biochemical Sciences. Regular ed.. 746-760.
- 2015. (Hyper)tension release by N-terminal acetylation. TIBS -Trends in Biochemical Sciences. Regular ed.. 422-424.
PEER-REVIEWED SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS (PubMed)
Efficient and crucial quality control of HAP1 cell ploidy status.
Beigl TB, Kjosås I, Seljeseth E, Glomnes N, Aksnes H*.
Biol Open. 2020 Nov 12;9(11):bio057174. doi: 10.1242/bio.057174. PMID: 33184093
Exploiting the potential of commercial digital holographic microscopy by combining it with 3D matrix cell culture assays
Hellesvik M, Øye H, Aksnes H*.
Sci Rep. 2020 Sep 7;10(1):14680. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-71538-1.PMID: 32895419
N-terminal acetylation of actin by NAA80 is essential for structural integrity of the Golgi apparatus
Beigl TB, Hellesvik M, Saraste J, Arnesen T, Aksnes H*.
Exp Cell Res. 2020 May 15;390(2):111961. doi: 10.1016/j.yexcr.2020.111961. Epub 2020 Mar 21.PMID: 32209306
Co-translational, Post-translational, and Non-catalytic Roles of N-Terminal Acetyltransferases
Aksnes H*, Ree R, Arnesen T*.
Mol Cell. 2019 Mar 21;73(6):1097-1114. Review. PMID: 30878283
Actin polymerization and cell motility are affected by NAA80-mediated posttranslational N-terminal acetylation of actin
Aksnes H*, Marie M, Arnesen T, Drazic A.
Commun Integr Biol. 2018 Oct 21;11(4):e1526572. PMID: 30534344
N-terminal Acetylation Levels Are Maintained During Acetyl-CoA Deficiency in Saccharomyces cerevisiae
Varland S, Aksnes H, Kryuchkov F, Impens F, Van Haver D, Jonckheere V, Ziegler M, Gevaert K, Van Damme P, Arnesen T.
Mol Cell Proteomics. 2018 Dec;17(12):2309-2323. PMID: 30150368
NAA80 is actin's N-terminal acetyltransferase and regulates cytoskeleton assembly and cell motility
Drazic A#, Aksnes H#, Marie M#, Boczkowska M, Varland S, Timmerman E, Foyn H, Glomnes N, Rebowski G, Impens F, Gevaert K, Dominguez R, Arnesen T.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2018 Apr 24;115(17):4399-4404. PMID: 29581253
# Shared first authorship
Best paper of the year, Faculty of Medicine, UiB
- From the cover Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2018; vol. 115 no. 17.
- Commented in: NATure of actin amino-terminal acetylation Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 115(17):4314-16.
- Commented in: Actin's N-terminal acetyltransferase uncovered Cytoskeleton 75(7):318-22.
Molecular determinants of the N-terminal acetyltransferase Naa60 anchoring to the Golgi membrane
Aksnes H, Goris M, Strømland Ø, Drazic A, Waheed Q, Reuter N, Arnesen T.
J Biol Chem. 2017 Apr 21;292(16):6821-6837. PMID: 28196861
Microscopy-based Saccharomyces cerevisiae complementation model reveals functional conservation and redundancy of N-terminal acetyltransferases
Osberg C, Aksnes H, Ninzima S, Marie M, Arnesen T.
Sci Rep. 2016 Aug 24;6:31627. PMID: 27555049
First Things First: Vital Protein Marks by N-Terminal Acetyltransferases
Aksnes H, Drazic A, Marie M, Arnesen T.
Trends Biochem Sci. 2016 Sep;41(9):746-760. Review. PMID: 27498224
Holding it together: Naa60 at the Golgi
Aksnes H, Marie M, Arnesen T.
Oncotarget. 2015 Jun 30;6(18):15726-7. PMID: 26164078
(Hyper)tension release by N-terminal acetylation
Aksnes H, Drazic A, Arnesen T.
Trends Biochem Sci. 2015 Aug;40(8):422-4. PMID: 26027460
Molecular, cellular, and physiological significance of N-terminal acetylation
Aksnes H, Hole K, Arnesen T.
Int Rev Cell Mol Biol. 2015;316:267-305. Review. PMID: 25805127
An organellar Nα-acetyltransferase, Naa60, acetylates cytosolic N termini of transmembrane proteins and maintains Golgi integrity
Aksnes H, Van Damme P, Goris M, Starheim KK, Marie M, Støve SI, Hoel C, Kalvik TV, Hole K, Glomnes N, Furnes C, Ljostveit S, Ziegler M, Niere M, Gevaert K, Arnesen T.
Cell Rep. 2015 Mar 3;10(8):1362-74. PMID: 25732826
Best paper of the year, Dept. of Molecular Biology, UiB
N-terminal acetylation by NatC is not a general determinant for substrate subcellular localization in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
Aksnes H, Osberg C, Arnesen T.
PLoS One. 2013 Apr 15;8(4):e61012. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0061012. Print 2013.
The human N-alpha-acetyltransferase 40 (hNaa40p/hNatD) is conserved from yeast and N-terminally acetylates histones H2A and H4.
Hole K, Van Damme P, Dalva M, Aksnes H, Glomnes N, Varhaug JE, Lillehaug JR, Gevaert K, Arnesen T.
PLoS One. 2011;6(9):e24713. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0024713. Epub 2011 Sep 15.
All peer-reviewed publications in the database PubMed
MY RESEARCH IS SUPPORTED BY FUNDING FROM:
2020 - Familien Blix' fond til fremme av medisinsk forskning
2020 - Konsul Søren Falch og Øyenlege Sigurd Falchs Fond for Medisinsk Vitenskap Falch Junior award
2020 - EPICS-XS (The European Proteomics Infrastructure Consortium)
2020 - Astri and Edvard Riisøens legat til fremme av vitenskapelig forskning
2019 - UiB, MedFak - Research/networking/portfolio activities
2019 - UiB - Funds awarded as part of being selected for the Momentum career development programme for early stage researchers
THROUGH PROF. THOMAS ARNESEN'S PROJECTS MY WORK IS ALSO SUPPORTED BY:
The European Research Council (ERC)
The Research Council of Norway (RCN / NFR)
The Norwegian Cancer Society (NCS)
Helse Vest (HV)