- Fir-dominated forests in Bavaria, Germany (2005)
- The map of “Regional natural forest composition by main tree species” (WALENTOWSKI et al. 2001) depicts Bavaria as a region largely predominated by the European beech (Fagus sylvatica). Analyses of climatope, hygrotope and trophotope of fir-dominated regional natural units make evident that the reasons for the preponderance of the European silver fir (Abies alba) are edaphic. In terms of regeneration vigour, growth and yield the fir particularly dominates in habitats with a combination of humus cover, acid-oligotrophic topsoils and clayey or waterlogged subsoils, where the beech usually exhibits stunted and malformed growth forms. This ecological preference has the effect that Bavarian Abies alba-forests are restricted to small patches within a matrix of potential natural vegetation formed by mixed deciduous-coniferous mountain forests. Within European Natura 2000 areas Abies- forests should be recorded carefully as special habitats. Their transitional character between temperate beech forests (habitat type 9130) and boreal spruce forests (habitat type 9410), the ecological preference of Abies alba as an endangered tree species and their sensitivity against environmental stressors, including changes in forest structure, air quality, and climate, make them important objects for nature conservation.
- Soluble epoxide hydrolase limits mechanical hyperalgesia during inflammation (2011)
- Background Cytochrome-P450 (CYP450) epoxygenases metabolise arachidonic acid (AA) into four different biologically active epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (EET) regioisomers. Three of the EETs (i.e., 8,9-, 11,12- and 14,15-EET) are rapidly hydrolysed by the enzyme soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH). Here, we investigated the role of sEH in nociceptive processing during peripheral inflammation. Results In dorsal root ganglia (DRG), we found that sEH is expressed in medium and large diameter neurofilament 200-positive neurons. Isolated DRG-neurons from sEH-/- mice showed higher EET and lower DHET levels. Upon AA stimulation, the largest changes in EET levels occurred in culture media, indicating both that cell associated EET concentrations quickly reach saturation and EET-hydrolyzing activity mostly effects extracellular EET signaling. In vivo, DRGs from sEH-deficient mice exhibited elevated 8,9-, 11,12- and 14,15-EET-levels. Interestingly, EET levels did not increase at the site of zymosan-induced inflammation. Cellular imaging experiments revealed direct calcium flux responses to 8,9-EET in a subpopulation of nociceptors. In addition, 8,9-EET sensitized AITC-induced calcium increases in DRG neurons and AITC-induced calcitonin gene related peptide (CGRP) release from sciatic nerve axons, indicating that 8,9-EET sensitizes TRPA1-expressing neurons, which are known to contribute to mechanical hyperalgesia. Supporting this, sEH-/- mice showed increased nociceptive responses to mechanical stimulation during zymosan-induced inflammation and 8,9-EET injection reduced mechanical thresholds in naive mice. Conclusion Our results show that the sEH can regulate mechanical hyperalgesia during inflammation by inactivating 8,9-EET, which sensitizes TRPA1-expressing nociceptors. Therefore we suggest that influencing the CYP450 pathway, which is actually highly considered to treat cardiovascular diseases, may cause pain side effects.