In JoVE (4)

Other Publications (398)

Articles by Jing Liu in JoVE

Other articles by Jing Liu on PubMed

Phosphoinositide 3-kinase/Akt and Nuclear Factor κB Pathways Are Involved in Tumor Necrosis Factor-related Apoptosis-inducing Ligand Resistance in Human Gastric Cancer Cells

Molecular Medicine Reports. May-Jun, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21472268

Human gastric cancer cells are generally believed to be less sensitive to tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL)-induced apoptosis, but the events responsible for this resistance are as yet unclear. In this study, we investigated the role of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt, nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signaling pathways in the TRAIL resistance of gastric cancer cells. TRAIL failed to induce observable apoptosis in the three cell lines. Further investigation revealed that TRAIL engagement led to the activation of PI3K/Akt as well as of NF-κB. The inhibition of PI3K/Akt by a specific inhibitor facilitated TRAIL-induced apoptosis. Blockage of TRAIL-induced NF-κB activation by transient transfection with a phosphorylation-defective mutant IκB also enhanced the sensitivity of cells towards TRAIL. Meanwhile, ERKs were highly activated in the resting cells and were not further activated by TRAIL treatment. However, the inhibition of ERK activity by PD98059 also enhanced the apoptosis-inducing ability of TRAIL. Our data demonstrated that the activation of PI3K/Akt and NF-κB by TRAIL is responsible for resistance to TRAIL in human gastric cancer cells. Blockage of survival signals significantly enhances the apoptosis induced by TRAIL.

Effects of Infrasound at 8 Hz 90 dB/130 dB on NMDAR1 Expression and Changes in Intracellular Calcium Ion Concentration in the Hippocampus of Rats

Molecular Medicine Reports. Nov-Dec, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21472333

In the present study, we investigated the effect of infrasound on the expression of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDAR)1 as well as changes in intracellular calcium ion concentration ([Ca2+]i) in the hippocampus of rats. Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were exposed for 2 h daily to infrasound at 8 Hz 90 dB or 130 dB, and NMDAR1 expression was examined on days 1, 7, 14, 21 and 28. The expression of NMDAR1 in the rat hippocampus upon exposure to infrasound at 8 Hz 90 dB sound pressure level (SPL) showed an initial decrease on day 1, an increase on days 7 and 14, a further decrease on day 21, and a return to normal levels on day 28. The peak level was observed on day 14 in every examined subregion of the hippocampus. By contrast, exposure to infrasound at 8 Hz 130 dB SPL had opposite effects, showing an increase on day 1, a decrease on day 7, a decrease to the lowest point on days 14, another increase on day 21 and a return to normal levels on day 28. The lowest expression of NMDAR1 was found in the CA1 and CA3 regions on day 14 and in the DG region on day 7 with exposure at 130 dB. There were significant differences in [Ca2+]i concentration on days 14 and 21 with infrasonic exposure at both 8 Hz 90 dB and 130 dB, but no significant differences in [Ca2+]i concentration on days 1, 7 and 28 compared to the control group. The highest [Ca2+]i level was noted on day 14 with infrasound exposure at 8 Hz 130 dB. These changes suggest that 8 Hz 90 dB/130 dB infrasound exposure induced certain reversible changes in NMDAR1 expression and [Ca2+]i concentration in hippocampal cells, which may influence mnemonic functions related to the hippocampus.

Syphilitic Proctitis Mimicking Rectal Cancer: A Case Report

World Journal of Gastrointestinal Pathophysiology. Aug, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21607150

Syphilitic proctitis is a rare disease. It usually presents as proctitis, ulcer and neoplasm but lacks pathognomonic clinical symptoms. It is, therefore, difficult to diagnose and is occasionally treated inappropriately. We report the case of a 51-year-old man who had a hard, ulcerated mass, which occupied the circumference of the rectal wall and which mimicked a rectal tumor. Fortunately, positive finding from routine toluidine red unheated serum test and treponema pallidum particle agglutination tests made us reevaluate the patient and led us to suspect syphilitic proctitis. This diagnosis was finally confirmed after successful penicillin G benzathine therapy which made surgery unnecessary.

Minimalist and Universal Peptidomimetics

Chemical Society Reviews. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21483946

Many "new generation" peptidomimetics are designed to present amino acid side chains only; they do not have structural features that resemble peptide main chains. These types of molecules have frequently been presented in the literature as mimics of specific secondary structures. However, many "side-chain only" peptidomimetics do not rest in single conformational states, but exist in a limited number of freely interconverting forms. These different conformations may resemble different secondary structures, so referring to them as, for instance, turn- or helical-mimics understates the ways they could adapt to various binding situations. Sets of scaffolds that can be used to mimic aspects of nearly every secondary structure, i.e. universal peptidomimetics, can be constructed. These may assume a privileged place in library design, particularly in high throughput screening for pharmacological probes for which binding conformations, or even the target itself, is unknown at the time the library is designed (critical review, 101 references).

Oleanane-type Triterpene Saponins and Cassaine-type Diterpenoids from Erythrophleum Fordii

Planta Medica. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21484673

Phytochemical investigation of the EtOH extract of the leaves of Erythrophleum fordii led to the isolation of two oleanane-type triterpene saponins (1-2) and five cassaine-type diterpenoids (4-8) along with one known methyl 3 β-hydroxy-erythrosuamate (3). Their structures were established by extensive NMR, as well as ESI-MS analyses and acid hydrolysis. Biological evaluation of compounds 3- 8 against five human cancer cell lines revealed that compounds 5-7 exhibited potent cytotoxic activity with IC₅₀ values ranging from 1.51 to 8.68 µM.

Mechanism of Immune Hyporesponsiveness Induced by Recipient- Derived Immature Dendritic Cells in Liver Transplantation Rat

Chinese Medical Sciences Journal = Chung-kuo I Hsüeh K'o Hsüeh Tsa Chih / Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21496420

To investigate the mechanism of immune hyporesponsiveness induced by donor-antigen- unloaded recipient-derived immature dendritic cell (imDC) of liver grafts in rats.

Inhibition of B16 Murine Melanoma Metastasis and Enhancement of Immunity by Fever-range Whole Body Hyperthermia

International Journal of Hyperthermia : the Official Journal of European Society for Hyperthermic Oncology, North American Hyperthermia Group. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21501029

Whole body hyperthermia (WBH) has been regarded as a promising alternative therapy to cure late stage cancer with metastasis. As the final biological and therapeutic effects are dependent on the specific protocol, the potential of using a microwave-based WBH approach for metastasis inhibition is established and its typical results are discussed.

CT-guided Single High-dose Percutaneous Acetic Acid Injection for Small Hepatocellular Carcinoma: A Long-term Follow-up Study

European Journal of Radiology. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21511422

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the long-term outcome of CT-guided single high-dose percutaneous acetic acid injection (PAI) for the treatment of small hepatocellular carcinoma (SHCC). MATERIALS AND METHODS: Sixty-eight consecutive patients (37 men and 31 women; age 52±16 years) with SHCC have undergone CT-guided single high-dose PAI therapy since December 2000. Complications of high-dose PAI were recorded. Tumour survival and recurrence rates were assessed. RESULTS: All PAI therapies were successful and no severe complications developed. The average follow-up period was 46±18 months. The overall survival rates at 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 years were 93%, 82%, 68%, 59% and 51%, respectively. The cumulative local recurrence rates for the main tumour at 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 years were 18%, 22%, 25%, 28% and 28%, respectively. The cumulative new tumour recurrence rates at 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 years were 24%, 40%, 43%, 60% and 62%, respectively. CONCLUSION: CT-guided single high-dose PAI is safe and effective for the treatment of SHCC after long-term follow-up.

[Association Between High Sensitivity C-reactive Protein Levels in Serum and the 5-year-accumulative-risk of Diabetes.]

Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Liuxingbingxue Zazhi. Jan, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21518530

OBJECTIVE: To analyze the association between hs-CRP (high-sensitivity C-reactive protein) levels in serum and the 5-year-accumulative-risk of diabetes in a general population. METHODS: Participants were from the cohort of Peking University residential community in the Chinese Multi-provincial Cohort Study (CMCS). Two surveys on cardiovascular risk factors and the measurements of serum hs-CRP levels were conducted in 2002 and 2007, respectively. Individuals with incomplete information and those having infectious diseases at baseline were excluded. A total of 1045 participants aged 45 to 74 years and free of diabetes at baseline were included in this analysis. RESULTS: The age-standardized 5-year accumulative incidence rate of diabetes was 8.8% (male: 9.8%, female: 8.2%) and increased significantly with the level of hs-CRP in both women and men (P < 0.01). After adjustment for age, hypertension, low-density liproprotein cholesterol, and high-density liproprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, fasting glucose, smoking status and central obesity, people with hs-CRP ≥ 3 mg/L had a 3.30 times higher risk of developing diabetes in men and 2.58 times for women when compared to those with hs-CRP < 1 mg/L. The areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves of baseline hs-CRP level in predicting the incidence of diabetes were 0.619 (95%CI: 0.536 - 0.701) in men and 0.667 (95%CI: 0.585 - 0.749) in women. CONCLUSION: Serum hs-CRP levels could predict the incidence of diabetes, indicating that inflammation might have great importance in the onset of diabetes.


Acta Crystallographica. Section E, Structure Reports Online. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21522980

In the title compound, C(17)H(20)N(2)O(3), the cyclo-hexane ring adopts a chair conformation. In the crystal, inter-molecular N-H⋯O hydrogen bonds link the mol-ecules into layers parallel to the ac plane.

Dimeric Prenylated C6-C3 Compounds from the Stem Bark of Illicium Oligandrum

Journal of Natural Products. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21524101

Three new dimeric prenylated C6-C3 compounds, namely, illicidiones A (1), B (2), and C (3), were isolated from the stem bark of Illicium oligandrum. The structure and absolute configuration of these compounds were determined by extensive spectroscopic and chemical analyses, including NMR, modified Mosher method, and single-crystal X-ray study. Compounds 1-3 exhibited weak anti-inflammatory activities.

Z Intensity-weighted Position Self-respiratory Gating Method for Free-breathing 3D Cardiac CINE Imaging

Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21524873

A free-breathing 3D cine steady-state free precession (SSFP) technique was developed using the z intensity-weighted position (ZIP) which is the center of mass of a projection along the slice direction as a respiratory gating signal. The ZIP signal was continuously acquired using a slice encoded k-space center sampling in every TR. The performance of this gating method was compared with a method using the k-space center signal (KC) and with conventional 2D breath-hold cine SSFP in healthy subjects by measuring image quality and left ventricular function. The preliminary data obtained here demonstrated that the ZIP gating method provided superior respiratory motion artifact suppression when compared to the KC gating and provided left ventricular ejection fractions, and end-diastolic and end-systolic volumes similar to those obtained with the breath-hold 2D cine SSFP acquisition.

Association of Angiotensin-converting Enzyme Gene Insertion/deletion Polymorphism with High-altitude Pulmonary Oedema: a Meta-analysis

Journal of the Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone System : JRAAS. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21525147

High-altitude pulmonary oedema (HAPE) is a non-cardiogenic hydrostatic oedema involving a genetic component. Considering the low incidence of HAPE, sample sizes in current reports are relatively limited. We aimed to assess the association between the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) I/D polymorphism and HAPE via a meta-analysis of published and unpublished data.

[Effect of PCP on the Living Cell Content and Distribution in Biofilms]

Huan Jing Ke Xue= Huanjing Kexue / [bian Ji, Zhongguo Ke Xue Yuan Huan Jing Ke Xue Wei Yuan Hui "Huan Jing Ke Xue" Bian Ji Wei Yuan Hui.]. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21528571

The phospholipids method for the determination of the living cell content in the biofilm was established to study the wastewater biofilm. With the micro-slicing technology, the biofilm was divided into 150 microm-layer for the phospholipids analysis. Results showed the phospholipids were approximately normal distribution along the biofilm depth without no addition of pentachlorophenol (PCP). The absolute values were between (1 246.2 +/- 217.4) microg/L and (527.2 +/- 95.3) microg/L with the maximum occurring at the depth of (0.60 +/- 0.15) microm, indicating the highest concentrations of the living cell in the biofilm. With the PCP concentrations of 5 microg/L, 10 microg/L and 20 microg/L and the exposure times of 2 h, 6 h and 24 h, respectively, the results of the orthogonal experiments showed the value of phospholipids decreased greatly along the biofilm depth only with the exception of 5 microg/L PCP concentration and 2 h exposure time, with a concentration decline by up to 70% especially close to the peak of phospholipids distribution. Results proved that PCP has an adversely influence on the living cells, and the influence can be enhanced with the increase of PCP amount and the exposure time.

Microwave-assisted, Divergent Solution-phase Synthesis of 1,3,6-trisubstituted Pyrazolo[3,4-d]pyrimidines

ACS Combinatorial Science. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21528879

A concise and highly divergent synthetic route has been developed to rapidly access 1,3,6-trisubstituted pyrazolopyrimidines. The synthesis features a microwave assisted one-pot N1-alkylation/Suzuki-Miyaura reaction as the key step. The sequence of the synthetic scheme can be varied to selectively modify the N1, C3, or C6 position at a late synthetic stage, thereby providing a highly efficient approach to explore the structure-activity relationships of pyrazolopyrimidine derivatives. The scope of these reactions has also been explored.

Identification and Molecular Characterization of Two Novel Mutations in COL1A2 in Two Chinese Families with Osteogenesis Imperfecta

Journal of Genetics and Genomics = Yi Chuan Xue Bao. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21530898

Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI, also known as brittle bone disease) is caused mostly by mutations in two type I collagen genes, COL1A1 and COL1A2 encoding the pro-α1 (I) and pro-α2 (I) chains of type I collagen, respectively. Two Chinese families with autosomal dominant OI were identified and characterized. Linkage analysis revealed linkage of both families to COL1A2 on chromosome 7q21.3-q22.1. Mutational analysis was carried out using direct DNA sequence analysis. Two novel missense mutations, c.3350A>G and c.3305G>C, were identified in exon 49 of COL1A2 in the two families, respectively. The c.3305G>C mutation resulted in substitution of a glycine residue (G) by an alanine residue (A) at codon 1102 (p.G1102A), which was found to be mutated into serine (S), argine (R), aspartic acid (D), or valine (V) in other families. The c.3350A>G variant may be a de novo mutation resulting in p.Y1117C. Both mutations co-segregated with OI in respective families, and were not found in 100 normal controls. The G1102 and Y1117 residues were evolutionarily highly conserved from zebrafish to humans. Mutational analysis did not identify any mutation in the COX-2 gene (a modifier gene of OI). This study identifies two novel mutations p.G1102A and p.Y1117C that cause OI, significantly expands the spectrum of COL1A2 mutations causing OI, and has a significant implication in prenatal diagnosis of OI.

Activation of AMPK by Berberine Promotes Adiponectin Multimerization in 3T3-L1 Adipocytes

FEBS Letters. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21536037

Adiponectin is assembled into trimer (LMW), hexamer (MMW) and high-molecular-weight (HMW) multimer in adipocytes. The HMW adiponectin is more metabolically active and closely associated with peripheral insulin sensitivity. In this study, we reported that berberine, an isoquinoline alkaloid with insulin-sensitizing effect, inhibits the expression of adiponectin, but promotes the assembly of HMW adiponectin and increases the ratio of HMW to total adiponectin. Berberine activates AMPK. Knockdown of AMPKα1 abolishes the effect of berberine. Activation of AMPK by AICAR also increases the level of HMW adiponectin. Our study suggested that activation of AMPK by berberine promotes adiponectin multimerization.

Differentiation of Neural Stem Cells Influences Their Chemotactic Responses to Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor

Journal of Neuroscience Research. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21538456

Although much effort has been devoted to the delineation of factors involved in the migration of neural stem/progenitor cells (NSCs), the relationship between the chemotactic response and the differentiation status of these cells remains elusive. In the present study, we found that NSCs in varying differentiation states possess different chemotactic responses to vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF): first, the number of chemotaxing NSCs and the optimal concentrations of VEGF that induced the peak migration vary greatly; second, time-lapse video analysis shows that NSCs at certain differentiation states migrate more efficiently toward VEGF, although the migration speed remains unchanged irrespective of cell states; third, the phosphorylation status of Akt, ERK1/2, SAPK/JNK, and p38MAPK is closely related to the differentiation levels of NSCs subjected to VEGF; and, finally, although inhibition of ERK1/2 signaling significantly attenuates VEGF-stimulated transfilter migration of both undifferentiated and differentiating NSCs, NSCs show normal chemotactic response after treatment with inhibitors of SAPK/JNK or p38MAPK. Meanwhile, interference with PI3K/Akt signaling prevents only NSCs of 12 hr differentiation, but not NSCs of 1 day or 3 days differentiation, from migrating in response to VEGF. Moreover, blocking of PI3K/Akt or MAPK signaling impairs the migration efficiency and/or speed, the extent of which depends on the cell differentiation status. Collectively, these results demonstrate that differentiation of NSCs influences their chemotactic responses to VEGF: NSCs in varying differentiation states have different migratory capacities, thereby shedding light on optimization of the therapeutic potential of NSCs to be employed for neural regeneration after injury.

Studies of New Fused Benzazepine As Selective Dopamine D3 Receptor Antagonists Using 3D-QSAR, Molecular Docking and Molecular Dynamics

International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21541053

In recent years, great interest has been paid to the development of compounds with high selectivity for central dopamine (DA) D3 receptors, an interesting therapeutic target in the treatment of different neurological disorders. In the present work, based on a dataset of 110 collected benzazepine (BAZ) DA D3 antagonists with diverse kinds of structures, a variety of in silico modeling approaches, including comparative molecular field analysis (CoMFA), comparative similarity indices analysis (CoMSIA), homology modeling, molecular docking and molecular dynamics (MD) were carried out to reveal the requisite 3D structural features for activity. Our results show that both the receptor-based (Q(2) = 0.603, R(2) (ncv) = 0.829, R(2) (pre) = 0.690, SEE = 0.316, SEP = 0.406) and ligand-based 3D-QSAR models (Q(2) = 0.506, R(2) (ncv) =0.838, R(2) (pre) = 0.794, SEE = 0.316, SEP = 0.296) are reliable with proper predictive capacity. In addition, a combined analysis between the CoMFA, CoMSIA contour maps and MD results with a homology DA receptor model shows that: (1) ring-A, position-2 and R(3) substituent in ring-D are crucial in the design of antagonists with higher activity; (2) more bulky R(1) substituents (at position-2 of ring-A) of antagonists may well fit in the binding pocket; (3) hydrophobicity represented by MlogP is important for building satisfactory QSAR models; (4) key amino acids of the binding pocket are CYS101, ILE105, LEU106, VAL151, PHE175, PHE184, PRO254 and ALA251. To our best knowledge, this work is the first report on 3D-QSAR modeling of the new fused BAZs as DA D3 antagonists. These results might provide information for a better understanding of the mechanism of antagonism and thus be helpful in designing new potent DA D3 antagonists.

Clinical Analysis of the Treatment of Spinocerebellar Ataxia and Multiple System Atrophy-cerebellar Type with Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stromal Cells

Cytotherapy. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21545234

The aims of this study were to observe the safety and effectiveness of umbilical cord mesenchymal stromal cells (UC-MSC) in the treatment of spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA) and multiple system atrophy-cerebellar type (MSA-C).

Asthma-associated Polymorphisms in 17q21 Influence Cord Blood ORMDL3 and GSDMA Gene Expression and IL-17 Secretion

The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21546069

In a genome-wide association study, genetic variants on chromosome 17q21 were strongly associated with childhood asthma and orosomucoid 1-like 3 (ORMDL3) gene expression. Regulation of the 17q21 locus and its immunologic relevance early in life have not been well characterized.

Different Associations of Apolipoprotein E Polymorphism with Metabolic Syndrome by Sex in an Elderly Chinese Population

Metabolism: Clinical and Experimental. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21550086

The metabolic syndrome (MetS) is characterized by a cluster of metabolic disorders including abnormal lipid and lipoprotein metabolism. Apolipoprotein E (ApoE) is involved in the regulation of the metabolism of cholesterol, lipoproteins, and triglycerides. The common ApoE polymorphism has been found to be associated with cardiovascular disease and diabetes. This study evaluated the ApoE genetic polymorphism and its relation to MetS defined by the modified National Cholesterol Education Program and International Diabetes Federation criteria in a population-based cross-sectional survey of an elderly Chinese population in Beijing, China. Genotypes of 937 men and 1385 women were included in the study. All participants were measured for blood pressure, anthropometric measurements, and fasting concentrations of glucose, triglycerides, cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. We applied a logistic regression model to derive adjusted odds ratios (ORs) and their 95% confidence intervals. In this Chinese population, the ɛ2, ɛ3, and ɛ4 allele frequencies were 8.3%, 83.4%, and 8.3% for men and 8.7%, 82.9%, and 8.4% for women, respectively. In men, concentrations of fasting triglycerides were higher among the APOE2 and E4 subjects; and a lower level of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol was observed in the APOE4 group. There were approximately linear associations of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels with APOE genotype groups in both men and women. We observed that the ɛ4 allele was associated with a significantly increased OR of MetS defined by the modified National Cholesterol Education Program criteria in men (OR, 1.75; 95% confidence interval, 1.17-2.63). In summary, our data show that common polymorphism of ApoE gene is associated with the presence of MetS in an elderly Chinese population.

[Study on Mobile Phone Based Wireless ECG Monitoring Technology System Typical Demonstration Applications]

Zhongguo Yi Liao Qi Xie Za Zhi = Chinese Journal of Medical Instrumentation. Jan, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21553529

Based on the mobile phone platform with wireless real-time ECG monitoring system developed in our lab, this article is dedicated to evaluate its practical value in people test. A series of new conceptual experiments were designed and performed. Particularly, ECG characteristics under different age, gender, health and motion conditions are evaluated. Effects of living habits such as drinking wine, coffee including various psychological conditions such as excitation, anxiety etc. to the ECG response are investigated. The human ECG under different time in a day such as morning, afternoon and late-night was evaluated. These conceptual experiments, which are hard to conduct otherwise using conventional devices, demonstrate the pervasive merits of the new system for fundamental study of heart disease as well as daily healthcare.

Conjoint Analysis of Patient Preferences on Medicare Medication Therapy Management

Journal of the American Pharmacists Association : JAPhA. May-Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21555290

To identify attributes of medication therapy management (MTM) valued by Medicare beneficiaries and to determine patient preferences and willingness to pay for MTM attributes.

Evidence for Association Between Disrupted-in-Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) Gene Polymorphisms and Autism in Chinese Han Population: a Family-based Association Study

Behavioral and Brain Functions : BBF. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21569632

Disrupted-in-Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) gene is one of the most promising candidate genes for major mental disorders. In a previous study, a Finnish group demonstrated that DISC1 polymorphisms were associated with autism and Asperger syndrome. However, the results were not replicated in Korean population. To determine whether DISC1 is associated with autism in Chinese Han population, we performed a family-based association study between DISC1 polymorphisms and autism.

The Controversial Links Among Calorie Restriction, SIRT1, and Resveratrol

Free Radical Biology & Medicine. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21569839

It has been widely known that slow metabolism induced by calorie restriction (CR) can extend the life span of model organisms though the underlying mechanism remains poorly understood. Accumulated evidence suggests that SIRT1 may be actively involved in CR-induced signaling pathways. As a putative activator of SIRT1, resveratrol, known for the French paradox, can partially mimic the physiological effects of CR. While the deacetylase activity of SIRT1 is important for the beneficial effects of resveratrol, resveratrol-induced SIRT1 activation has recently been challenged by the observations that resveratrol could not induce SIRT1-mediated deacetylation of native substrates in vitro. To resolve the discrepancy of resveratrol-induced activation of SIRT1 deacetylase activity between the in vitro and in vivo assays, a model of indirect SIRT1 activation by resveratrol is proposed. In this review, we will discuss the emerging roles of SIRT1 and resveratrol in CR and focus on debate over the links between SIRT1 and resveratrol.

A Biosensor Prepared by Co-entrapment of a Glucose Oxidase and a Carbon Nanotube Within an Electrochemically Deposited Redox Polymer Multilayer

Bioelectrochemistry (Amsterdam, Netherlands). Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21570925

A glucose biosensor based on a nanocomposite made by layer-by-layer electrodeposition of the redox polymer into a multilayer containing glucose oxidase (GOx) and single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNT) on a screen-printed carbon electrode (SPCE) surface was developed. The objectives of the electrodeposition of redox polymer are to stabilize further the multilayer using a coordinative cross-linked redox polymer and to wire the GOx. The electrochemistry of the layer-by-layer assembly of the GOx/SWCNT/redox polymer nanocomposite was followed by cyclic voltammetry. The resultant biosensor provided stable and reproducible electrocatalytic responses to glucose, and the electrocatalytic current for glucose oxidation was enhanced with an increase in the number of layers. The biosensor displayed a linear range from 0.5 to 6.0mM, a sensitivity of 16.4μA/(mMcm(2)), and a response time of about 5s. It shows no response to 0.05mM of ascorbic acid, 0.32mM of uric acid and 0.20mM of acetaminophen using a Nafion membrane covering the nanocomposite-modified electrode surface.

A Study of Cycling Induced Degradation Mechanisms in Si Nanocrystal Memory Devices

Nanotechnology. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21572215

The endurance of Si nanocrystal memory devices under Fowler-Nordheim program and erase (P/E) cycling is investigated. Both threshold voltage (V(th)) and subthreshold swing (SS) degradation are observed when using a high program or erase voltage. The change of SS is found to be proportional to the shift of V(th), indicating that the generation of interface traps plays a dominant role. The charge pumping and the mid-gap voltage methods have been used to analyze endurance degradation both qualitatively and quantitatively. It is concluded that high erase voltage causes severe threshold voltage degradation by generating more interface traps and trapped oxide charges.

[Characteristics of Human Metapneumovirus Respiratory Tract Infection in Children and the Relationship Between the Infection and Meteorological Conditions]

Zhonghua Er Ke Za Zhi. Chinese Journal of Pediatrics. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21575373

To study the epidemiology of human metapneumovirus (hMPV) infection in children and its relations with meteorological conditions in Suzhou.

[Predicting Clinical Chemo-sensitivity of Primary Ovarian Cancer Using Adenosine Triphosphate-tumor Chemosensitivity Assay Combined with Detection of Drug Resistance Genes]

Zhonghua Fu Chan Ke Za Zhi. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21575453

To predict clinical chemotherapy sensitivity of primary ovarian cancer by jointing adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-tumor chemo-sensitivity assay (TCA) method in vitro and detection of drug resistance genes, provide reference for clinical treatment.

Characterization of 2-(2,6-dichloro-benzyl)-thiazolo[5,4-d]pyrimidin-7-yl]-(4-trifluoromethyl-phenyl)-amine (JNJ-39729209) As a Novel TRPV1 Antagonist

European Journal of Pharmacology. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21575625

As an integrator of multiple nociceptive and/or inflammatory stimuli, TRPV1 is an attractive therapeutic target for the treatment of various painful disorders. Several TRPV1 antagonists have been advanced into clinical trials and the initial observations suggest that TRPV1 antagonism may be associated with mild hyperthermia and thermal insensitivity in man. However, no clinical efficacy studies have been described to date, making an assessment of risk:benefit impossible. Furthermore, it is not clear whether these early observations are representative of all TRPV1 antagonists and whether additional clinical studies with novel TRPV1 antagonists are required in order to understand optimal compound characteristics. In the present study we describe 2-(2,6-dichloro-benzyl)-thiazolo[5,4-d]pyrimidin-7-yl]-(4-trifluoromethyl-phenyl)-amine (JNJ-39729309) as a novel, TRPV1 antagonist. JNJ-39729209 displaced tritiated resiniferotoxin binding to TRPV1 and prevented TRPV1 activation by capsaicin, protons and heat. In-vivo, JNJ-39729209 blocked capsaicin-induced hypotension, induced a mild hyperthermia and inhibited capsaicin-induced hypothermia in a dose dependent manner. JNJ-39729209 showed significant efficacy against carrageenan- and CFA-evoked thermal hyperalgesia and exhibited significant anti-tussive activity in a guinea-pig model of capsaicin-induced cough. In pharmacokinetic studies, JNJ-39729209 was found to have low clearance, a moderate volume of distribution, good oral bioavailability and was brain penetrant. On the basis of these findings, JNJ-39729209 represents a structurally novel TRPV1 antagonist with potential for clinical development. The advancement of JNJ-39729209 into human clinical trials could be useful in further understanding the analgesic potential of TRPV1 antagonists.

β-Elemene-induced Autophagy Protects Human Gastric Cancer Cells from Undergoing Apoptosis

BMC Cancer. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21595977

β-Elemene, a compound found in an herb used in traditional Chinese medicine, has shown promising anti-cancer effects against a broad spectrum of tumors. The mechanism by which β-elemene kills cells remains unclear. The aim of the present study is to investigate the anti-tumor effect of β-elemene on human gastric cancer cells and the molecular mechanism involved.

Iridoid Glycosides and Glycosidic Constituents from Eriophyton Wallichii Benth

Phytochemistry. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21601897

C₉-iridoid glycosides, wallichiisides A-C, and four dimers, wallichiisides D-G, together with 13 known glycosidic compounds, were isolated from whole plants of Eriophyton wallichii Benth. Their structures were elucidated by spectroscopic methods and comparison with literature values. Four of these compounds showed moderate DPPH free radical scavenging activity.

Depressed Hippocampal MEK/ERK Phosphorylation Correlates with Impaired Cognitive and Synaptic Function in Zinc-deficient Rats

Nutritional Neuroscience. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21605499

An experiment was performed to observe changes of mitogen-activated protein kinase ERK (MEK)/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signaling pathways in the hippocampus of zinc-deficient (ZD) rats and the correlation with cognitive dysfunction. Forty-four male weanling Wistar rats were randomly assigned to ZD (n = 22) and control (pair-fed, n = 22) groups. After a 4-week treatment, Y-maze was used to test the spatial memory of the rats. The long-term potentiation (LTP) in rat hippocampal dentate gyrus was observed simultaneously. pMEK, pERK1/2, and pCREB protein levels were examined by Western blot assays. The results demonstrated that the latency period in Y-maze was significantly shorter for the ZD rats. LTP amplitude in the ZD group decreased significantly compared with the control group. pMEK, pERK1/2, and pCREB protein expression of hippocampus in the ZD group decreased significantly. The results implicated a possibility that zinc deficiency-induced cognitive and synaptic impairment may be relevant to the MEK/ERK signaling pathway.

Autologous Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation in Liver Failure Patients Caused by Hepatitis B: Short-term and Long-term Outcomes

Hepatology (Baltimore, Md.). Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21608000

Our study aimed to investigate the short-term efficacy and long-term prognosis of liver failure patients caused by hepatitis B after a single transplantation with autologous marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MMSCs). A total of 527 inpatients with liver failure caused by hepatitis B were recruited and received the same medical treatments, among whom 53 patients underwent a single transplantation with autologous MMSCs. A total of 105 patients matched for age, sex, and biochemical indexes, including alanine aminotransferase (ALT), albumin, total bilirubin (TBIL), prothrombin time (PT), and Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD), comprised the control group. A total of 120 mL of bone marrow was obtained from each patient and then diluted and separated. Then, the MMSC suspension was slowly transfused into the liver through the proper hepatic artery. The success rate of transplantation was 100%, without serious side effects or complications. Levels of ALB, TBIL, and PT and MELD score of patients in the transplantation group were markedly improved from 2-3 weeks after transplantation, compared with those in the control group. At 192 weeks of follow-up, there were no dramatic differences in incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) or mortality between the two groups. Additionally, there were no significant differences in the incidence of HCC or mortality between patients with and without cirrhosis in the transplantation group. Conclusion: Autologous MMSC transplantation is safe for liver failure patients caused by chronic hepatitis B. Short-term efficacy was favorable, but long-term outcomes were not markedly improved. In respect to several parameters, this method is preferable for patients with liver cirrhosis and may have potential for reducing their incidence of HCC and mortality.

A Ratiometric Fluorescent Probe for Cyanide Based on FRET

Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21614384

On the basis of FRET from 4-(N,N-dimethylamino)benzamide to fluorescein, a new ratiometric fluorescence probe bearing a hydrazone binding unit was developed for highly selective and sensitive detection of CN(-) in aqueous solution.

Intra-amniotic Administration of Exogenous Pulmonary Surfactant for Improving in Lung Maturity of Fetal Rabbits with Intrauterine Infection Caused by Premature Rupture of Membranes

Bosnian Journal of Basic Medical Sciences / Udruženje Basičnih Mediciniskih Znanosti = Association of Basic Medical Sciences. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21619557

This study was to investigate the effect of intra-amniotic administration of pulmonary surfactant (PS) on lung maturation in conditions of experimentally induced premature rupture of membranes (PROM) and intrauterine infection of rabbits. To establish animal (rabbit) models of intrauterine infection caused by PROM, E. coli was intrauterinely injected in 24-and 26-day pregnant animals. Twenty healthy pregnancy adult Japanese white rabbits were divided into three groups: the infection group (8 rabbits), infection group with intra-amniotic PS administration (8 rabbits) and healthy controls (4 rabbits). Ultrastructure changes in the lung were observed under an electron microscope 19.5 hours after intervention. The results showed that the lung infection levels of fetal rabbits in the infection group and the infection group with PS had no significant difference. Bacillus bodies and infiltrated inflammatory cells can be occasionally seen in the alveoli, bronchial lumen, and cytoplasm.The type II alveolar epithelial cells (AT-II) were decreased in the infection group than that in control group. Lamellar bodies showed vacuolation changes and different levels of apoptosis. In the infection group with PS, the count of AT-II did not show an obvious decrease. Lamellar bodies increased, and different secretion forms appeared. Also, there was little apoptosis and no obvious collagen fiber hyperplasia in antenatal administration of PS group. We believe that once PROM has happened, intrauterine infection and inflammation stimulated a cascade reaction on the fetal lung, leading to abnormal changes in the alveolar ultrastructure. Intra-amniotic administration of PS can improve the fetal lung ultrastructure and its maturity.

[The Curative Effects of Different Drugs on Liver Cell Damage of Rats Induced by Acute Nickel Carbonyl Poisoning]

Zhonghua Lao Dong Wei Sheng Zhi Ye Bing Za Zhi = Zhonghua Laodong Weisheng Zhiyebing Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Diseases. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21619836

To assess the curative effects of different drugs on liver cell damage of rats induced by acute nickel carbonyl poisoning.

[The Changes of Blood Neurotransmitter Levels in Workers Occupationally Exposed to Ethylbenzene]

Zhonghua Lao Dong Wei Sheng Zhi Ye Bing Za Zhi = Zhonghua Laodong Weisheng Zhiyebing Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Diseases. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21619842

To explore the effects of occupational ethylbenzene exposure on blood neurotransmitter levels in population.

[The Neurobehavioral Effects of Population Occupationally Exposed to Ethylbenzene]

Zhonghua Lao Dong Wei Sheng Zhi Ye Bing Za Zhi = Zhonghua Laodong Weisheng Zhiyebing Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Diseases. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21619843

To evaluate the influence of ethylbenzene on the neurobehavior of occupationally exposed workers.

Cloning and Characterization of a Novel CoA-ligase Gene from Penicillium Chrysogenum

Folia Microbiologica. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21625874

A novel phenylacetic acid (PAA)-induced CoA-ligase-encoding gene, designated as phlC, has been cloned from penicillin-producing fungus Penicillium chrysogenum. The open reading frame of phlC cDNA was 1671 bp and encoded a 556 amino acid residues protein with the consensus AMP binding site and a peroxisomal targeting signal 1 on its C terminus. The deduced amino acid sequence showed 37% and 38% identity with characterized P. chrysogenum Phl and PhlB protein, respectively. Functional recombinant PhlC protein was overexpressed in Escherichia coli. The purified recombinant enzyme was capable to convert PAA into its corresponding CoA ester with a specific activity of 129.5 ± 3.026 pmol/min per mg protein. Similar to Phl and PhlB, PhlC displayed broad substrate spectrum and showed higher activities to medium- and long-chain fatty acids. The catalytic properties of PhlC have been determined and compared to those of Phl and PhlB.

Toxicity Prediction of Dioxins and Dioxins-like Compounds Based on the Molecular Fragments Variable Connectivity Index

Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21626111

The toxicity of 95 doxins and dioxin-like compounds was investigated by quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) with the molecular fragments variable connectivity index (mfVCI). For each of the four homologues, the models have good fitting (R² > 0.80) and predictive (Q²EXT > 0.80) ability. The models developed from more than one homologues are also satisfactory with R² > 0.80 and Q²EXT > 0.77. The molecular fragments weights have the ability to diagnose the contribution of the molecular fragments to the toxicity of the compounds. The mfVCI may play an important role in the development of molecular descriptors in further QSAR research.

Direct Synthesis of Aryl Ketones by Palladium-catalyzed Desulfinative Addition of Sodium Sulfinates to Nitriles

Chemistry (Weinheim an Der Bergstrasse, Germany). Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21626598

Screening of the Common Culture Conditions Affecting Crystallinity of Bacterial Cellulose

Journal of Industrial Microbiology & Biotechnology. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21630052

By analyzing with X-ray diffraction and FT-IR spectroscopy, the main effective factors among common culture conditions on crystallinity index and I(α) fraction of cellulose produced by Gluconacetobacter xylinus were examined with Plackett-Burman design experiment. Varying pH value in the medium by adjusting the composition of citrate buffer or by adding HCl/NaOH solution indicates it is the content of citrate buffer rather than its function of pH buffering that gives the influence on crystallinity. Further experiment reveals that Na+ concentration of 0.174 mol/l in medium with citrate buffer added would decrease the crystallinity index significantly. Comparison of carbon sources shows that fructose leads to a higher crystallinity index than glucose, which suggests a relationship between crystallinity and production speed of bacterial cellulose affected by carbon sources. An interesting phenomenon was that a longer period of cultivation would decrease the crystallinity of bacterial cellulose. The reason is assumed to be the dense network of cellulose formed by bacterial cells that restrict the motion of themselves as the incubation period extends. Though the effect of inoculum age is still unclear, the influence on crystallinity of bacterial cellulose caused by variation of some ordinary culture conditions can be drawn out from data of this work.

Impaired Adrenergic- and Corticotropic-axis Outflow During Exercise in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

Metabolism: Clinical and Experimental. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21632072

Exercise stimulates coordinated release of the sympathoadrenal hormones adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), cortisol, norepinephrine (NE), and epinephrine (Epi). The study hypothesis was that chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is marked by heightened sympathoadrenal outflow at comparable relative workloads. The location of the study was at a clinical research unit. Eight healthy men and 9 men with stable COPD (forced expiratory volume at 1 second <75% predicted) were studied. Volunteers rested (baseline) or exercised at individual submaximal (35% ± 5%) or maximal oxygen consumption. Blood was sampled every 2 minutes for 40 minutes concurrently. Two-way analysis of covariance was applied to examine group (healthy/COPD) and exercise (3 levels) effects on ACTH, cortisol, NE, and Epi release and regularity (estimable by approximate entropy). The timing of peak hormone concentrations was Epi, 14 minutes; NE, 16 minutes; ACTH, 22 minutes; and cortisol, 34 minutes in both cohorts. Type of exercise regimen influenced all 4 hormones (each P < .001), and subject group (control vs COPD) affected cortisol (P < .001) and Epi (P = .048) responses. Exercise regimen and group together controlled ACTH, cortisol, and Epi (each P < .001), but not NE, responses. In particular, endocrine responses were attenuated in COPD compared with control subjects. Approximate entropy analysis also identified loss of maximal exercise-induced ACTH-secretory regularity in COPD patients (P = .042). These outcomes demonstrate impaired rather than augmented exercise-associated sympathocorticotropic-axis outflow in patients with COPD even when outcomes are normalized to maximal oxygen consumption, suggesting that factors other than fitness are at work.

Studies of H4R Antagonists Using 3D-QSAR, Molecular Docking and Molecular Dynamics

Journal of Molecular Modeling. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21647664

Three-dimensional quantitative structure-activity relationship studies were performed on a series of 88 histamine receptor 4 (H4R) antagonists in an attempt to elucidate the 3D structural features required for activity. Several in silico modeling approaches, including comparative molecular field analysis (CoMFA), comparative similarity indices analysis (CoMSIA), molecular docking, and molecular dynamics (MD), were carried out. The results show that both the ligand-based CoMFA model (Q (2) = 0.548, R (ncv) (2)  = 0.870, R (pre) (2)  = 0.879, SEE = 0.410, SEP = 0.386) and the CoMSIA model (Q (2) = 0.526, R (ncv) (2) =0.866, R (pre) (2)  = 0.848, SEE = 0.416, SEP = 0.413) are acceptable, as they show good predictive capabilities. Furthermore, a combined analysis incorporating CoMFA, CoMSIA contour maps and MD results shows that (1) compounds with bulky or hydrophobic substituents at positions 4-6 in ring A (R2 substituent), positively charged or hydrogen-bonding (HB) donor groups in the R1 substituent, and hydrophilic or HB acceptor groups in ring C show enhanced biological activities, and (2) the key amino acids in the binding pocket are TRP67, LEU71, ASP94, TYR95, PHE263 and GLN266. To our best knowledge, this work is the first to report the 3D-QSAR modeling of these H4R antagonists. The conclusions of this work may lead to a better understanding of the mechanism of antagonism and aid in the design of new, more potent H4R antagonists.

Structural Models Describing Placebo Treatment Effects in Schizophrenia and Other Neuropsychiatric Disorders

Clinical Pharmacokinetics. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21651312

Large variation in placebo response within and among clinical trials can substantially affect conclusions about the efficacy of new medications in psychiatry. Developing a robust placebo model to describe the placebo response is important to facilitate quantification of drug effects, and eventually to guide the design of clinical trials for psychiatric treatment via a model-based simulation approach. In addition, high dropout rates are very common in the placebo arm of psychiatric clinical trials. While developing models to evaluate the effect of placebo response, the data from patients who drop out of the trial should be considered for accurate interpretation of the results. The objective of this paper is to review the various empirical and semi-mechanistic models that have been used to quantify the placebo response in schizophrenia trials. Pros and cons of each placebo model are discussed. Additionally, placebo models used in other neuropsychiatric disorders like depression, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease are also reviewed with the objective of finding those placebo models that could be useful for clinical studies of both acute and chronic schizophrenic disease conditions. Better understanding of the patterns of dropout and the factors leading to dropouts are crucial in identifying the true placebo response. We therefore also review dropout models that are used in the development of models for treatment effects and in the optimization of clinical trials by simulation approaches. The use of an appropriate modelling strategy that is capable of identifying the potential sources of variable placebo responses and dropout rates is recommended for improving the sensitivity in discriminating between the effects of active treatment and placebo.

Which is the Optimal Biologically Effective Dose of Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy for Stage I Non-small-cell Lung Cancer? A Meta-analysis

International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21658853

To assess the relationship between biologically effective dose (BED) and efficacy of stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) and to explore the optimal BED range for Stage I non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

Comparative Effects of Chlorpyrifos in Wild Type and Cannabinoid Cb1 Receptor Knockout Mice

Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21672545

Endocannabinoids (eCBs) modulate neurotransmission by inhibiting the release of a variety of neurotransmitters. The cannabinoid receptor agonist WIN 55.212-2 (WIN) can modulate organophosphorus (OP) anticholinesterase toxicity in rats, presumably by inhibiting acetylcholine (ACh) release. Some OP anticholinesterases also inhibit eCB-degrading enzymes. We studied the effects of the OP insecticide chlorpyrifos (CPF) on cholinergic signs of toxicity, cholinesterase activity and ACh release in tissues from wild type (+/+) and cannabinoid CB1 receptor knockout (-/-) mice. Mice of both genotypes (n=5-6/treatment group) were challenged with CPF (300 mg/kg, 2 ml/kg in peanut oil, sc) and evaluated for functional and neurochemical changes. Both genotypes exhibited similar cholinergic signs and cholinesterase inhibition (82-95% at 48h after dosing) in cortex, cerebellum and heart. WIN reduced depolarization-induced ACh release in vitro in hippocampal slices from wild type mice, but had no effect in hippocampal slices from knockouts or in striatal slices from either genotype. Chlorpyrifos oxon (CPO, 100 μM) reduced release in hippocampal slices from both genotypes in vitro, but with a greater reduction in tissues from wild types (21% vs 12%). CPO had no significant in vitro effect on ACh release in striatum. CPF reduced ACh release in hippocampus from both genotypes ex vivo, but reduction was again significantly greater in tissues from wild types (52% vs 36%). In striatum, CPF led to a similar reduction (20-23%) in tissues from both genotypes. Thus, while CB1 deletion in mice had little influence on the expression of acute toxicity following CPF, CPF- or CPO-induced changes in ACh release appeared sensitive to modulation by CB1-mediated eCB signaling in a brain-regional manner.

C-Reactive Protein Predicts the Severity of Coronary Artery Disease Beyond Low-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol

Angiology. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21676965

Prospective studies and clinical trials have shown that C-reactive protein (CRP) independently predicts the occurrence of cardiovascular events, even in individuals without hypercholesterolemia. We evaluated whether CRP can predict the severity of coronary artery stenosis in patients with lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels. A total of 418 patients with lower LDL-C (<3.37 mmol/L) who underwent coronary angiography were recruited. The median levels of CRP increased according to the number of stenotic vessels. Multivariable adjustment model indicated that CRP was associated with the severity of coronary artery disease (CAD) in the top to the bottom third comparison of CRP levels, yielding an odds ratio of 1.72 (95% confidence interval: 1.08-2.74); this trend was preserved after excluding the confounding effect of statin treatment. C-reactive protein may serve as a useful biomarker for improving the risk assessment and secondary prevention of CAD patients without hypercholesterolemia.

Enhanced Efficacy of Sirolimus-eluting Bioabsorbable Magnesium Alloy Stents in the Prevention of Restenosis

Journal of Endovascular Therapy : an Official Journal of the International Society of Endovascular Specialists. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21679083

To determine the efficacy of sirolimus-eluting bioabsorbable magnesium alloy stents (SEBMAS) in restenosis prevention.

Structural Insights into the Down-regulation of Overexpressed P185(her2/neu) Protein of Transformed Cells by the Antibody ChA21

The Journal of Biological Chemistry. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21680730

p185(her2/neu) belongs to the ErbB receptor tyrosine kinase family, which has been associated with human breast, ovarian, and lung cancers. Targeted therapies employing ectodomain-specific p185(her2/neu) monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) have demonstrated clinical efficacy for breast cancer. Our previous studies have shown that p185(her2/neu) mAbs are able to disable the kinase activity of homomeric and heteromeric kinase complexes and induce the conversion of the malignant to normal phenotype. We previously developed a chimeric antibody chA21 that specifically inhibits the growth of p185(her2/neu)-overexpressing cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. Herein, we report the crystal structure of the single-chain Fv of chA21 in complex with an N-terminal fragment of p185(her2/neu), which reveals that chA21 binds a region opposite to the dimerization interface, indicating that chA21 does not directly disrupt the dimerization. In contrast, the bivalent chA21 leads to internalization and down-regulation of p185(her2/neu). We propose a structure-based model in which chA21 cross-links two p185(her2/neu) molecules on separate homo- or heterodimers to form a large oligomer in the cell membrane. This model reveals a mechanism for mAbs to drive the receptors into the internalization/degradation path from the inactive hypophosphorylated tetramers formed dynamically by active dimers during a "physiologic process."

A Better Way to Do Small-for-size Liver Transplantation in Rats

Frontiers of Medicine. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21681683

Establishing a model for small-for-size liver transplantation is the basis for this study of partial and living donor graft liver transplantation. This study aims to explore a simpler and more effective way of establishing a 30% small-for-size liver transplantation in rats. Sprague-Dawley rats were selected as the donors and recipients. Small-for-size orthotopic liver transplantation was performed using Kamada's two-cuff method. The donor's liver was flushed via the abdominal aorta and hepatectomy was performed in situ. The animals were divided into three groups depending on the graft selected, with 40 pairs of rats in each group. In group I, the median lobe of the liver was used as graft; in group II, the right half of the median lobe and the right lobe were used as graft; and in group III, the median and right lobes were used as graft. In groups I and II, the bodyweights of donors were the same as those of recipients; however, in group III the bodyweights of donors were 100-120 g less than those of the recipients. The duration needed for transplantation, the 7-day survival rates, and the technical complication rates were compared among these three groups. The time required for hepatectomy was shorter in group III compared with groups I and II (8.8±0.7 min vs. 11.5±1.1 min and 10.1±1.0 min, P = 0.001). The cold ischemia time for the grafts, the anhepatic times, and the transplantation times for the recipients were not significantly different among the three groups. Compared with groups I and II, the incidence of bleeding, bile leakage, and inferior vena caval strictures were significantly decreased in group III (P<0.05). No significant differences between the three groups were found based on other complications after the operation (P>0.05). Group III had better 7-day survival rates and longer median survival times but the differences were not statistically significant. The method of small for donor bodyweight using the median and right lobes for grafting may be a more effective and simpler way of establishing a 30% small-for-size liver transplantation in rats, as shown by the shorter hepatectomy time and the occurrence of fewer complications after the operation.

Transcriptional Down-regulation of Brca1 and E-cadherin by CtBP1 in Breast Cancer

Molecular Carcinogenesis. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21681822

Carboxyl-terminal binding protein 1 (CtBP1) is a transcriptional co-repressor with oncogenic potential. Immunohistochemistry staining using human breast cancer tissue arrays revealed that 92% of invasive ductal breast cancer cases have CtBP1-positive staining compared to 4% CtBP1-positive in normal breast tissue. To explore the functional impact of CtBP1 in breast cancer, we examined CtBP1's transcriptional regulation of known tumor suppressors, breast cancer susceptibility gene 1 (Brca1), and E-cadherin. We found CtBP1 was recruited to the promoter regions of Brca1 and E-cadherin genes in breast cancer cells. Concomitantly, Brca1 loss was detected in 57% and E-cadherin loss was detected in 76% of human invasive ductal breast cancers, and correlated with CtBP1 nuclear staining in these lesions. Importantly, siRNA knock down of CtBP1 restored Brca1 and E-cadherin expression in breast cancer cell lines, implying CtBP1 down-regulates Brca1 and E-cadherin genes in human breast cancer. This study provides evidence that although genetic loss of Brca1 and E-cadherin are infrequent in breast cancer, they are down-regulated at the transcriptional level by CtBP1 expression. Thus, CtBP1 activation could be a potential biomarker for breast cancer development. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Integrated Transcriptional and Proteomic Analysis with in Vitro Biochemical Assay Reveal the Important Role of CYP3A46 in T-2 Toxin Hydroxylation in Porcine Primary Hepatocytes

Molecular & Cellular Proteomics : MCP. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21685020

Both T-2 toxin and its metabolites are highly potent mycotoxins that can cause severe human and animal diseases upon exposure. Understanding the toxic mechanism and biotransformation process of T-2 toxin at a cellular level is essential for the development of counter-measures. We investigated the effect of T-2 toxin in porcine primary hepatocytes using porcine genome array and two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis with matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization tandem time of flight mass spectrometry. Integrated transcriptional and proteomic analysis demonstrated that T-2 toxin adversely affected porcine hepatocytes by initiating lipid metabolism disorder, oxidative stress response, and apoptosis. In addition, xenobiotic metabolism genes, including cytochrome P450 3As (CYP3A46 and CYP3A39), carboxylesterase 1Cs (CES1C4 and CES1C5), and epoxide hydrolase (EPHX1), increased in T-2 toxin treatment cells. Using HepG2 cells to over-express the recombinant xenobiotic metabolism genes above and rapid resolution liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry to detect metabolites of T-2 toxin, we determined that porcine CYP3A46 mainly catalyzed T-2 to form 3'-hydroxy-T-2, which was further confirmed by purified CYP3A46 protein. However, recombinant porcine CES1C5 and EPHX1 did not enhance hydrolysis and de-epoxidation of T-2 implying that other esterases and epoxide hydrolases may play dominant roles in those reactions.

A Wulff-type Boronate for Boronate Affinity Capture of Cis-diol Compounds at Medium Acidic PH Condition

Chemical Communications (Cambridge, England). Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21687891

A new Wulff-type boronate was designed and synthesized. Upon immobilization on a polymeric monolith and acidified as boronic acid, the ligand exhibited specific boronate affinity to cis-diol compounds at medium acidic pH condition.

A Cross-sectional Study of the Microeconomic Impact of Cardiovascular Disease Hospitalization in Four Low- and Middle-income Countries

PloS One. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21695127

To estimate individual and household economic impact of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in selected low- and middle-income countries (LMIC).

Ultrasensitive DNA Detection Based on Au Nanoparticles and Isothermal Circular Double-assisted Electrochemiluminescence Signal Amplification

Chemical Communications (Cambridge, England). Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21695310

We report here an ultrasensitive DNA detection approach which combines Au NPs enhanced electrochemiluminescence (ECL) of the CdS nanocrystal (NC) film with isothermal circular amplification reaction of polymerase and nicking endonuclease (NEase). By the double-signal amplification, this approach could sensitively respond down to 5 aM DNA.

Drug Release Behaviors of a PH Sensitive Semi-interpenetrating Polymer Network Hydrogel Composed of Poly(vinyl Alcohol) and Star Poly[2-(dimethylamino)ethyl Methacrylate]

International Journal of Pharmaceutics. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21704139

A series of pH sensitive semi-interpenetrating polymer network (semi-IPN) structural hydrogels composed of poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) and 21-arm star poly[2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate] (star PDMAEMA) with different molecular weight were prepared. Riboflavin was used as a model drug to evaluate the drug loading capacities and drug release behaviors of the semi-IPN structural hydrogels. The molecular weight of the star PDMAEMA polymers was calculated by GPC, and the formation of semi-IPN structure was confirmed by FTIR and SEM. It was found that the molecular weight of star PDMAEMA has significant effect on the structure, swelling ratio and drug release behaviors of the semi-IPN hydrogel at different pH conditions. The results suggested that the PVA/star PDMAEMA-50,000 hydrogel exhibited highest swelling ratio and drug loading capacity. The pH-sensitive semi-IPN hydrogel based on star PDMAEMA could be a promising drug delivery system due to the controllable porous structure.

[Mobile Phone Based Wireless Microscopy Imaging Technology]

Zhongguo Yi Liao Qi Xie Za Zhi = Chinese Journal of Medical Instrumentation. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21706785

This article proposes a new device named "Wireless Cellscope" that combining mobile phone and optical microscope together. The established wireless microscope platform consists of mobile phone, network monitor, miniaturized microscope or high resolution microscope etc. A series of conceptual experiments were performed on microscopic observation of ordinary objects and mice tumor tissue slices. It was demonstrated that, the new method could acquire microscopy images via a wireless way, which is spatially independent. With small size and low cost, the device thus developed has rather wide applicability in non-disturbing investigation of cell/tissue culture and long distance observation of dangerous biological sample etc.

[VOCs Analyzing and Odor Indicator Selecting in Ambient Air of Landfill Area]

Huan Jing Ke Xue= Huanjing Kexue / [bian Ji, Zhongguo Ke Xue Yuan Huan Jing Ke Xue Wei Yuan Hui "Huan Jing Ke Xue" Bian Ji Wei Yuan Hui.]. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21717729

The odor pollution of landfill is one of seriously pollutions in city ambient area. Main pollution points in the landfill area have been detected by preliminary research. For a particular purpose to recover the materials changing in odor dispersion process and to find out odor indication material, GC-MS method was used to detect materials in the different site at down wind direction. Then, similarity coefficient of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) composition between every two site were calculated and compared to look for changing regular of odor pollution in diffusion process. The odor pollution indictor material has be found in the materials that appeared in down wind direction of operation area and compared its' olfaction threshold. The results show that: there have 19 types of common materials in the landfill area, including monoaromatics, alkanes and halogenated compounds; Materials in the air of operation area site has marked influence on down windward direction air of landfill, and m-xlyene has been selected as odor pollution indictor of landfill air by this research.

Protective Autophagy Antagonizes Oxaliplatin-induced Apoptosis in Gastric Cancer Cells

Chinese Journal of Cancer. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21718595

Oxaliplatin-based chemotherapy is used for treating gastric cancer. Autophagy has been extensively implicated in cancer cells; however, its function is not fully understood. Our study aimed to determine if oxaliplatin induce autophagy in gastric cancer MGC803 cells and to assess the effect of autophagy on apoptosis induced by oxaliplatin. MGC803 cells were cultured with oxaliplatin. Cell proliferation was measured using MTT assay, and apoptosis was determined by flow cytometry. Protein expression was detected by Western blot. Autophagy was observed using fluorescent microscopy. Our results showed that the rate of apoptosis was 9.73% and 16.36% when MGC803 cells were treated with 5 and 20 μg/mL oxaliplatin for 24 h, respectively. In addition, caspase activation and poly ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP) cleavage were detected. Furthermore, when MGC803 cells were treated with oxaliplatin for 24 h, an accumulation of punctate LC3 and an increase of LC3-II protein were also detected, indicating the activation of autophagy. Phosphorylation of Akt and mTOR were inhibited by oxaliplatin. Compared to oxaliplatin alone, the combination of autophagy inhibitor chlorochine and oxaliplatin significantly enhanced the inhibition of cell proliferation and the induction of cell apoptosis. In conclusion, oxaliplatin-induced protective autophagy partially prevents apoptosis in gastric cancer MGC803 cells. The combination of autophagy inhibitor and oxaliplatin may be a new therapeutic option for gastric cancer.

Lithium, an Anti-psychotic Drug, Greatly Enhances the Generation of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

Cell Research. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21727907

Somatic cells can be reprogrammed into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) by defined factors. The low efficiency of reprogramming and genomic integration of oncogenes and viral vectors limited the potential application of iPSCs. Here we report that Lithium (Li), a drug used to treat mood disorders, greatly enhances iPSC generation from both mouse embryonic fibroblast and human umbilical vein endothelial cells. Li facilitates iPSC generation with one (Oct4) or two factors (OS or OK). The effect of Li on promoting reprogramming only partially depends on its major target GSK3β. Unlike other GSK3β inhibitors, Li not only increases the expression of Nanog, but also enhances the transcriptional activity of Nanog. We also found that Li exerts its effect by promoting epigenetic modifications via downregulation of LSD1, a H3K4-specific histone demethylase. Knocking down LSD1 partially mimics Li's effect in enhancing reprogramming. Our results not only provide a straightforward method to improve the iPSC generation efficiency, but also identified a histone demethylase as a critical modulator for somatic cell reprogramming.

Dietary Factors Associated with Hypertension

Nature Reviews. Cardiology. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21727918

Hypertension is one of the major risk factors for cardiovascular disease, with an impact on global health. Multiple studies have suggested that various dietary factors are associated with blood pressure (BP) and hypertension. The purpose of this Review is to provide up-to-date knowledge on the impact of dietary factors on BP and hypertension, to compare types and recommended intakes of dietary factors in hypertension management and prevention guidelines from different countries and organizations, and to outline global population-based healthy-diet strategies for hypertension control. Of the 27 dietary factors we evaluated on the basis of specified review criteria, 17 have been proposed to have protective effects against hypertension, six were proposed to be risk factors for hypertension, and the association between BP and the remaining factors was considered inconclusive. Excessive sodium intake is a causal risk factor for hypertension, whereas a diet rich in fruit, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products, and low in sodium and saturated fat has been recommended to prevent and reduce hypertension on the basis of strong evidence. Notable differences exist in the recommended types and intakes of dietary factors among available hypertension management and prevention guidelines. Available evidence supports the vigorous implementation of dietary strategies against hypertension through population-based, national action plans.

A Study on the Thermochemotherapy Effect of Nanosized As2O3/MZF Thermosensitive Magnetoliposomes on Experimental Hepatoma in Vitro and in Vivo

Nanotechnology. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21730756

In this paper, we describe the synthesis and characterization of a nanosized, thermosensitive magnetoliposome encapsulating magnetic nanoparticles (MZFs) and antitumor drugs (As(2)O(3)). The nanoliposomes were spherical and mostly single volume, with an average diameter of 128.2 nm. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) showed a liposome phase transition temperature of 42.71 °C. After that, we studied the liposomes' anti-hepatoma effect in vitro and in vivo. The antitumor effect of the nanoliposomes on human hepatoma cells, SMMC-7721, and changes in expression of apoptosis-related proteins were examined in vitro. The results show that As(2)O(3)/MZF thermosensitive magnetoliposomes combined with hyperthermia had a great impact on the Bax/Bcl-2 ratio, which increased to 1.914 and exhibited a rapid response to induce apoptosis of tumor cells. An in situ rabbit liver tumor model was established and used to evaluate the antitumor effect of combined hyperthermia and chemotherapy following transcatheter arterial embolization with As(2)O(3)/MZF thermosensitive magnetoliposomes. The results demonstrated a strong anti-hepatoma effect, with a tumor volume inhibition rate of up to 85.22%. Thus, As(2)O(3)/MZF thermosensitive magnetoliposomes may play a great role in the treatment of hepatocarcinoma.

[Expression of Tumor Necrosis Factor in Placenta Tissue of Pregnant Rats with Chronic Peridontitis]

Zhonghua Kou Qiang Yi Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Kouqiang Yixue Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Stomatology. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21733379

To examine the expression of tumor necrosis factor in placenta of pregnant rats with chronic periodontitis.

Isocratic Method for Affinity Enrichment of Covalently-linked Peptides in Cyanogen Bromide Cleavage of Proteins

Proteomics. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21751378

The low resolution three-dimensional structure of a protein can be inferred from existing disulfide bridges or experimentally introduced chemical crosslinks. The general procedure involves enzymatic digestion of a protein followed by mass spectrometry-based identification of covalently-linked peptides, native disulfide-linked peptides and chemically cross-linked peptides. To facilitate unambiguous identification of these peptides, an isocratic purification method was developed for selective enrichment of covalently-linked cyanogen bromide (CNBr) fragments. This method capitalizes on the ability of homoserine lactone moieties at the C-termini of CNBr cleavage products for selective conjugation of primary-amine containing affinity tag. The availability of two C-termini within covalently-linked peptides allows for the conjugation of two affinity tags, whereas the other peptides have only one affinity tag at the C-terminus, which enables selective enrichment of covalently-linked peptides by utilization of affinity tag with moderate dissociation constant. Here we demonstrate successful implementation of this method with tetrahistidine as the affinity tag for enrichment of covalently-linked CNBr fragments of test peptides and proteins.


Acta Crystallographica. Section E, Structure Reports Online. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21754859

In the title compound, C(29)H(28)ClNO(7), the tetra-hydro-furan ring and the six-membered ring fused to it both display envelope conformations. The dihedral angles between the plane of the benzene ring of the benzo[d][1,3]dioxole system and the planes of the other two benzene rings are 80.59 (3) and 63.60 (2)°.


Acta Crystallographica. Section E, Structure Reports Online. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21754898

In the title compound, C(31)H(34)N(2)O(7), the fused tetra-hydro-furan and six-membered rings each display an envelope conformation. The dihedral angles between the benzene ring of the benzo[d][1,3]dioxole and the other two benzene rings are 89.68 (3) and 63.38 (2)°. In the crystal, weak inter-molecular C-H⋯O hydrogen bonds link the mol-ecules.

[Histologic Classification of Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma]

Zhonghua Bing Li Xue Za Zhi Chinese Journal of Pathology. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21756838

Local-global Interaction and the Emergence of Scale-free Networks with Community Structures

Artificial Life. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21762023

Understanding complex networks in the real world is a nontrivial task. In the study of community structures we normally encounter several examples of these networks, which makes any statistical inferencing a challenging endeavor. Researchers resort to computer-generated networks that resemble networks encountered in the real world as a means to generate many networks with different sizes, while maintaining the real-world characteristics of interest. The generation of networks that resemble the real world turns out in itself to be a complex search problem. We present a new rewiring algorithm for the generation of networks with unique characteristics that combine the scale-free effects and community structures encountered in the real world. The algorithm is inspired by social interactions in the real world, whereby people tend to connect locally while occasionally they connect globally. This local-global coupling turns out to be a powerful characteristics that is required for our proposed rewiring algorithm to generate networks with community structures, power law distributions both in degree and in community size, positive assortative mixing by degree, and the rich-club phenomenon.

Comparison of Immature and Mature Bone Marrow-derived Dendritic Cells by Atomic Force Microscopy

Nanoscale Research Letters. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21762525

ABSTRACT: A comparative study of immature and mature bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDCs) was first performed through an atomic force microscope (AFM) to clarify differences of their nanostructure and adhesion force. AFM images revealed that the immature BMDCs treated by granulocyte macrophage-colony stimulating factor plus IL-4 mainly appeared round with smooth surface, whereas the mature BMDCs induced by lipopolysaccharide displayed an irregular shape with numerous pseudopodia or lamellapodia and ruffles on the cell membrane besides becoming larger, flatter, and longer. AFM quantitative analysis further showed that the surface roughness of the mature BMDCs greatly increased and that the adhesion force of them was fourfold more than that of the immature BMDCs. The nano-features of the mature BMDCs were supported by a high level of IL-12 produced from the mature BMDCs and high expression of MHC-II on the surface of them. These findings provide a new insight into the nanostructure of the immature and mature BMDCs.

[Association Between Risk Factors of Cardiovascular Diseases and Osteoporosis in Postmenopausal Chinese Women]

Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Liuxingbingxue Zazhi. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21781470

To assess the relationship between cardiovascular risk factors and osteoporosis.

Interaction of a Wolbachia WSP-like Protein with a Nuclear-encoded Protein of Brugia Malayi

International Journal for Parasitology. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21782817

The Brugia malayi endosymbiont Wolbachia has recently been shown to be essential for its host's survival and development. However, relatively little is known about Wolbachia proteins that interact with the filarial host and which might be important in maintaining the obligate symbiotic relationship. The Wolbachia surface proteins (WSPs) are members of the outer membrane protein family and we hypothesise that they might be involved in the Wolbachia-Brugia symbiotic relationship. Notably, immunolocalisation studies of two WSP members, WSP-0432 and WSP-0284 in B. malayi female adult worms showed that the corresponding proteins are not only present on the surface of Wolbachia but also in the host tissues, with WSP-0284 more abundant in the cuticle, hypodermis and the nuclei within the embryos. These results confirmed that WSPs might be secreted by Wolbachia into the worm's tissue. Our present studies focus on the potential involvement of WSP-0284 in the symbiotic relationship of Wolbachia with its filarial host. We show that WSP-0284 binds specifically to B. malayi crude protein extracts. Furthermore, a fragment of the hypothetical B. malayi protein (Bm1_46455) was found to bind WSP-0284 by panning of a B. malayi cDNA library. The interaction of WSP-0284 and this protein was further confirmed by ELISA and pull-down assays. Localisation by immunoelectron microscopy within Wolbachia cells as well as in the worm's tissues, cuticle and nuclei within embryos established that both proteins are present in similar locations within the parasite and the bacteria. Identifying such specific interactions between B. malayi and Wolbachia proteins should lead to a better understanding of the molecular basis of the filarial nematode and Wolbachia symbiosis.

Differences in Bio-incompatibility Among Four Biocompatible Dialyzer Membranes Using in Maintenance Hemodialysis Patients

Renal Failure. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21787159

Following the introduction of modified cellulosic and then synthetic membrane dialyzers, it was realized that the dialyzer bio-incompatibility depends on the membrane composition. We designed a prospective, randomized, cohort study of 6 months to determine several parameters of biocompatibility in maintenance hemodialysis (MHD) patients treated with four different membrane dialyzers.

PEG-detachable and Acid-labile Cross-linked Micelles Based on Orthoester Linked Graft Copolymer for Paclitaxel Release

Nanotechnology. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21788685

Polyethylene glycol detachable graft copolymer, mPEG-g-p(NAS-co-BMA), was synthesized by grafting 2-(ω-methoxy)PEGyl-1,3-dioxan-5-ylamine onto poly(N-(acryloyloxy)succinimide-co-butyl methacrylate). Pseudo in situ cross-linking of the mPEG-g-p(NAS-co-BMA) was performed in dimethylformamide phosphate buffer (v/v = 1/1) by an acid-labile diamine cross-linker bearing two symmetrical cyclic orthoesters. The cross-linked (CL) micelles with different contents of mPEG segments represented different morphologies. The CL micelles containing approximately one mPEG segment exhibited 'echini' morphology whereas the CL micelle with approximately three mPEG segments formed nanowires. The hydrolysis rate of the CL micelles is highly pH-dependent and much more rapid at mild acid than physiological conditions. Hydrolyzates of the CL micelles formed vesicles because new amphiphilic copolymers were formed. Paclitaxel (PTX) was successfully loaded into the CL micelles and a controlled and pH-dependent release behavior was observed. No obvious cytotoxicity was found for the CL micelles at concentration as high as 800  mg l( - 1).

[Relatively Specific Effect of Electroacupuncture of Different Acupoints on Hypothalamic Monoamine Neurotransmitters in Myocardial Ischemia Rats]

Zhen Ci Yan Jiu = Acupuncture Research / [Zhongguo Yi Xue Ke Xue Yuan Yi Xue Qing Bao Yan Jiu Suo Bian Ji]. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21793386

To observe the effect of electroacupuncture (EA) of "Shenmen" (HT 7), "Neiguan" (PC 6), etc. on monoamine neurotransmitter contents of hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN) region in myocardial ischemia (MI) rats, so as to analyze the substantial basis of efficacy specificity of acupoints in improving MI.

A Rare Perforated Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor in the Jejunum: a Case Report

The Turkish Journal of Gastroenterology : the Official Journal of Turkish Society of Gastroenterology. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21796562

We herein report a 45-year-old Chinese male with a perforated jejunal gastrointestinal stromal tumor causing acute diffuse peritonitis and incomplete intestinal obstruction. At urgent laparotomy, a perforated tumor was found in the jejunum about 40 cm from the Treitz's ligament, and the upper small intestine was twisted 1080°. The clinical symptom of this case is extremely rare, and has not been reported in the literature previously.

Genotoxicity in Vinyl Chloride-exposed Workers and Its Implication for Occupational Exposure Limit

American Journal of Industrial Medicine. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21796658

Vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) is a colorless gas under room temperature and has been mostly used to produce polyvinyl chloride (PVC) since the 1970s. It is classified by the International Agency of Research on Cancer (IARC) as a known human carcinogen (Group 1). In this study, genetic damage in VCM workers was evaluated in relation to their occupational cumulative exposure to VCM.

Alteration of Inhibitory and Activating Natural Killer Cell Receptor Expression on T Cells in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-infected Chinese

Microbiology and Immunology. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21806677

T cell expression of NKRs can trigger or inhibit cell-mediated cytotoxicity. However, few studies on T lymphocyte NKR expression in HIV infection exist. Here, we examined the expression patterns of NKG2D, NKG2A, and KIR3DL1 on CD8⁺ and CD3⁺CD8⁻ cells by multicolor flow cytometry in groups of patients with HIV, AIDS or HAART-treated AIDS, as well as HIV-negative normal controls. Individual analysis of KIR3DL1 on CD3⁺ CD8⁺ or CD3⁺CD8⁻ cells revealed no significant differences among any of the groups (P > 0.05). In contrast, the percentage of NKG2A⁺NKG2D⁻CD8⁺ T cells was higher in the AIDS group than in the HIV-negative normal control group (P < 0.01). Meanwhile, the prevalence of NKG2D⁺ NKG2A⁻ CD8⁺ T cells was lower in the AIDS group than in HIV-negative normal controls (P < 0.001). Similar results were also observed for the percentage of NKG2A⁺ NKG2D⁻ on CD3⁺ CD8⁻ cells. However, in contrast to CD8⁺ T cells, the frequencies of NKG2D⁺ NKG2A⁻ on CD3⁺CD8⁻ cells were higher in AIDS and HIV patients than in HIV-negative normal controls (P < 0.01, P < 0.05, respectively). The percentage of NKG2A⁺NKG2⁻CD8⁺ T cells was negatively correlated with CD4⁺T cell counts (r=-0.499, P < 0.01), while the percentage of NKG2D⁺NKG2A⁻CD8⁺ T cells was positively correlated with CD4⁺ T cell counts (r= 0.494, P < 0.01). The percentage of NKG2D⁺NKG2A⁻CD3⁺CD8⁻ T cells was also positively correlated with viral load (r= 0.527, P < 0.01) and negatively correlated with CD4⁺ T cell counts (r=-0.397, P < 0.05). Finally, HAART treatment reversed the changes in NKR expression caused by HIV infection. These results indicate that the expression of NKRs on T cells may be correlated with HIV disease progression.

Alteration of Inhibitory and Activating NK Cell Receptor Expression on NK Cells in HIV-infected Chinese

Cellular Immunology. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21813117

Natural killer (NK) cell function, based on the expression of activating and inhibitory natural killer receptors (NKRs), may become abnormal during human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. In this study, we investigated changes in receptor expression with individual and combinational analysis on NK cell subsets in HIV-infected Chinese. The results showed that natural killer group 2 member D (NKG2D) expression on total NK cells decreased significantly in HIV infection, while the expressions of natural killer group 2 member A (NKG2A) and killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor, three domains, long cytoplasmic tail 1 (KIR3DL1) on total NK cells were not significantly different between any of the groups including HIV-positive treatment-naïve group, AIDS treatment-naïve group, HAART-treatment AIDS group and HIV-negative control group. Individual analysis of NKG2A(+) and KIR3DL1(+) cells revealed no significant differences in expression in any NK cell subsets between any of the groups, but the combinational analysis of NKG2D(-)NKG2A(+), and NKG2D(-)KIR3DL1(+) on the NK CD56(dim) cell subset in the AIDS group were increased compared to the HIV-negative control group. On the contrary, NKG2D(-)NKG2A(+) expression on the CD56(bright) subset decreased in the AIDS group compared to the control group. Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) treatment almost completely restored the levels of these receptor expressions. The results indicate that the distinct alteration of activating and inhibitory NKR expression on NK cells and its subsets occurred during HIV progression. Moreover, the imbalanced change of activating and inhibitory NKRs on NK cells and its subsets may explain the impaired NK cell immunity in HIV infected individuals.

Motif Difficulty (MD): A Predictive Measure of Problem Difficulty for Evolutionary Algorithms Using Network Motifs

Evolutionary Computation. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21815769

Abstract One of the major challenges in the field of evolutionary algorithms (EAs) is to characterise which kinds of problems are easy and which are not. Researchers have been attracted to predict the behaviour of EAs in different domains. We introduce fitness landscape networks (FLNs) that are formed using operators satisfying specific conditions and define a new predictive measure that we call motif difficulty (MD) for comparison-based EAs. Because it is impractical to exhaustively search the whole network, we propose a sampling technique for calculating an approximate MD measure. Extensive experiments on binary search spaces are conducted to show both the advantages and limitations of MD. Multidimensional knapsack problems (MKPs) are also used to validate the performance of approximate MD on FLNs with different topologies. The effect of two representations, namely binary and permutation, on the difficulty of MKPs is analysed.

Synthesis of 4β-triazole-podophyllotoxin Derivatives by Azide-alkyne Cycloaddition and Biological Evaluation As Potential Antitumor Agents

European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21821321

A representative synthetic process of derivatizing the natural product podophyllotoxin utilizing the copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition (CuAAC) is described including molecular design, reaction optimization and X-ray structure confirmation. Evaluation of cytotoxicity against human cancer cell lines (Hela, K562 and K562/A02) using MTT assay proves that these triazole derivatives have good antitumor activities. High activities toward the drug resistant K562/A02 cell line reveal promising future for these derivatives. The rarely prepared 1,5-disubstituted triazole isomers, which would be omitted by the "click chemistry", were found to have superior cytotoxicities to that of the 1,4-disubstituted isomers.

Morphoproteomics Demonstrates Activation of Mammalian Target of Rapamycin Pathway in Papillary Thyroid Carcinomas with Nuclear Translocation of MTOR in Aggressive Histological Variants

Modern Pathology : an Official Journal of the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology, Inc. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21822208

We used morphoproteomics to investigate mammalian target of rapamycin (MTOR) signaling pathway in papillary thyroid carcinomas and correlated the results with clinicopathological parameters. Archival paraffin-embedded tissue of papillary thyroid carcinomas was obtained from 30 patients, including 15 classical type and 8 follicular, 4 tall-cell, 1 columnar-cell, 1 diffuse sclerosing and 1 cribriform variants. Immunohistochemical stains were performed for three phosphorylated (p) protein analytes: p-MTOR (Ser2448), p-Akt (Ser473) and p-p70S6K (Thr389). Chromogenic signals and subcellular compartmentalization (nuclear, cytoplasmic and plasmalemmal) were evaluated. Clinicopathological parameters were reviewed. Immunoreactivities for p-MTOR, p-Akt and p-p70S6K were observed in all papillary thyroid carcinomas. In addition to an expression of p-MTOR in cytoplasmic location, nuclear translocation of p-MTOR with variable loss of plasmalemmal expression, and with concomitant nuclear expression of p-Akt, was also identified in all tall-cell, columnar-cell and diffuse sclerosing variants of papillary thyroid carcinoma. There were no significant differences in the clinicopathological parameters, including tumor size, extrathyroidal extension, angioinvasion and nodal metastases between the groups with and without nuclear expression of p-MTOR (P>0.05). The expressions of p-MTOR in cytoplasmic and/or plasmalemmal locations with the concomitant immunoreactivity for p-p70S6K in all papillary thyroid carcinomas indicate the activation of MTOR complex 1 pathway. The nuclear translocation of p-MTOR evidences the activation of MTOR complex 2 and is identified only in the known aggressive histological variants of papillary thyroid carcinoma, including tall-cell, columnar-cell and diffuse sclerosing variants. Thus, these results suggest the constitutive activation of MTOR signaling pathway in papillary thyroid carcinomas and provide a new insight of biogenetic basis for the aggressive histological variants of papillary thyroid carcinoma. The pattern of expression of p-MTOR in papillary thyroid carcinomas may serve as a diagnostic/prognostic marker and a potential therapeutic target.

Optimal Codon Identities in Bacteria: Implications from the Conflicting Results of Two Different Methods

PloS One. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21829489

A correlation method was recently adopted to identify selection-favored 'optimal' codons from 675 bacterial genomes. Surprisingly, the identities of these optimal codons were found to track the bacterial GC content, leading to a conclusion that selection would generally shape the codon usages to the same direction as the overall mutation does. Raising several concerns, here we report a thorough comparative study on 203 well-selected bacterial species, which strongly suggest that the previous conclusion is likely an illusion. Firstly, the previous study did not preclude species that are suffering weak or no selection pressures on their codon usages. For these species, as showed in this study, the optimal codon identities are prone to be incorrect and follow GC content. Secondly, the previous study only adopted the correlation method, without considering another method to test the reliability of inferred optimal codons. Actually by definition, optimal codons can also be identified by simply comparing codon usages between high- and low-expression genes. After using both methods to identify optimal codons for the selected species, we obtained highly conflicting results, suggesting at least one method is misleading. Further we found a critical problem of correlation method at the step of calculating gene bias level. Due to a failure of accurately defining the background mutation, the problem would result in wrong optimal codon identities. In other words, partial mutational effects on codon choices were mistakenly regarded as selective influences, leading to incorrect and biased optimal codon identities. Finally, considering the translational dynamics, optimal codons identified by comparison method can be well-explained by tRNA compositions, whereas optimal codons identified by correlation method can not be. For all above reasons, we conclude that real optimal codons actually do not track the genomic GC content, and correlation method is misleading in identifying optimal codons and better be avoided.

Multimodal Characterization of Compositional, Structural and Functional Features of Human Atherosclerotic Plaques

Biomedical Optics Express. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21833365

Detection of atherosclerotic plaque vulnerability has critical clinical implications for avoiding sudden death in patients with high risk of plaque rupture. We report on multimodality imaging of ex-vivo human carotid plaque samples using a system that integrates fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM), ultrasonic backscatter microscopy (UBM), and photoacoustic imaging (PAI). Biochemical composition is differentiated with a high temporal resolution and sensitivity at the surface of the plaque by the FLIM subsystem. 3D microanatomy of the whole plaque is reconstructed by the UBM. Functional imaging associated with optical absorption contrast is evaluated from the PAI component. Simultaneous recordings of the optical, ultrasonic, and photoacoustic data present a wealth of complementary information concerning the plaque composition, structure, and function that are related to plaque vulnerability. This approach is expected to improve our ability to study atherosclerotic plaques. The multimodal system presented here can be translated into a catheter based intraluminal system for future clinical studies.

Reducing Plasma Membrane Sphingomyelin Increases Insulin Sensitivity

Molecular and Cellular Biology. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21844222

It has been shown that inhibition of de novo sphingolipid synthesis increases insulin sensitivity. For further exploration of the mechanism involved, we utilized two models: heterozygous serine palmitoyltransferase (SPT) subunit 2 (Sptlc2) gene knockout mice and sphingomyelin synthase 2 (Sms2) gene knockout mice. SPT is the key enzyme in sphingolipid biosynthesis, and Sptlc2 is one of its subunits. Homozygous Sptlc2-deficient mice are embryonic lethal. However, heterozygous Sptlc2-deficient mice that were viable and without major developmental defects demonstrated decreased ceramide and sphingomyelin levels in the cell plasma membranes, as well as heightened sensitivity to insulin. Moreover, these mutant mice were protected from high-fat diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance. SMS is the last enzyme for sphingomyelin biosynthesis, and SMS2 is one of its isoforms. Sms2 deficiency increased cell membrane ceramide but decreased SM levels. Sms2 deficiency also increased insulin sensitivity and ameliorated high-fat diet-induced obesity. We have concluded that Sptlc2 heterozygous deficiency- or Sms2 deficiency-mediated reduction of SM in the plasma membranes leads to an improvement in tissue and whole-body insulin sensitivity.

Quantitative PK-PD Model-based Translational Pharmacology of a Novel Kappa Opioid Receptor Antagonist Between Rats and Humans

The AAPS Journal. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21847689

Pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic (PK-PD) modeling greatly enables quantitative implementation of the "learn and confirm" paradigm across different stages of drug discovery and development. This work describes the successful prospective application of this concept in the discovery and early development of a novel κ-opioid receptor (KOR) antagonist, PF-04455242, where PK-PD understanding from preclinical biomarker responses enabled successful prediction of the clinical response in a proof of mechanism study. Preclinical data obtained in rats included time course measures of the KOR antagonist (PF-04455242), a KOR agonist (spiradoline), and a KOR-mediated biomarker response (prolactin secretion) in plasma. Clinical data included time course measures of PF-04455242 and prolactin in 24 healthy volunteers following a spiradoline challenge and single oral doses of PF-04455242 (18 and 30 mg). In both species, PF-04455242 successfully reversed spiradoline-induced prolactin response. A competitive antagonism model was developed and implemented within NONMEM to describe the effect of PF-04455242 on spiradoline-induced prolactin elevation in rats and humans. The PK-PD model-based estimate of K(i) for PF-04455242 in rats was 414 ng/mL. Accounting for species differences in unbound fraction, in vitro K(i) and brain penetration provided a predicted human K(i) of 44.4 ng/mL. This prediction was in good agreement with that estimated via the application of the proposed PK-PD model to the clinical data (i.e., 39.2 ng/mL). These results illustrate the utility of the proposed PK-PD model in supporting the quantitative translation of preclinical studies into an accurate clinical expectation. As such, the proposed PK-PD model is useful for supporting the design, selection, and early development of novel KOR antagonists.

A Causal Analysis of Intra-abdominal Hemorrhage After Reduced-size Liver Transplantation in Rat

Cell Biochemistry and Biophysics. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21858590

In this study, we analyzed causes of abdominal hemorrhage after reduced-size liver transplantation in rat. Healthy SD rats (weight range of 260-280 g) underwent liver transplantation, the donors were female and the recipients were male rats. The recipients were, on average, by <10 g heavier than the donors. All operations on donor rats were performed by the same person using unaided eyesight. Operations on recipient rats were performed by two persons using unaided eyesight. About 270 rats received reduced-size liver transplantation of which 44 died because of intra-abdominal hemorrhages. The distribution of abdominal hemorrhage sites was as follows: 28 cases with anastomotic hemorrhages of the inferior vena cava of the superior liver, 9 cases with subcapsular hemorrhage, 9 cases with tied hemorrhages from the left lateral lobe, 7 cases with hemorrhages from the papillary lobe, 7 hemorrhages from the triangular lobe, 5 hemorrhages of the right suprarenal vein and lumbar veins, 4 hemorrhages caused by mechanical injury, 4 cuff hemorrhages of the portal vein and the inferior vein cava of the inferior liver, 8 anastomotic hemorrhages of the inferior vena cava of the superior liver and the tied hemorrhage of the left outboard lobe, and 5 hemorrhages of the two tied points of the reduced-size liver. Ten hemorrhages were stopped by suture or/and ligature, and 6 were stopped by washing with or soaking in hot water. Results of this study will be helpful to raise success rates of reduced-size liver transplantation.

The Measurement of Differential EXAFS Modulated by High Pressure

Journal of Synchrotron Radiation. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21862852

Differential EXAFS (DiffEXAFS) is able to detect subtle atomic perturbations in the local area of the absorbing atom. Here a new method of performing DiffEXAFS experiments under the modulation of high pressure has been developed. Periodic pressure was achieved in the gasket with the help of a dynamic diamond anvil cell, and the measurements were conducted in common energy-scanning mode. This technique has been utilized on ZnSe at 4.8 GPa. The present results have demonstrated a good agreement with the equation of state of ZnSe, and revealed sensitivity to atomic displacements of one order higher in magnitude than that of conventional EXAFS.

[Spatiotemporal Analysis of Event-related Potentials During Mind Wandering]

Nan Fang Yi Ke Da Xue Xue Bao = Journal of Southern Medical University. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21868316

To investigate the neural mechanism of mind wandering.

Demonstration of Motionless Knudsen Pump Based Micro-gas Chromatography Featuring Micro-fabricated Columns and On-column Detectors

Lab on a Chip. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21869988

This paper reports the investigation of a micro-gas chromatography (μGC) system that utilizes an array of miniaturized motionless Knudsen pumps (KPs) as well as microfabricated separation columns and optical detectors. A prototype system was built to achieve a flow rate of 1 mL min(-1) and 0.26 mL min(-1) for helium and dry air, respectively, when they were used as carrier gas. This system was then employed to evaluate GC performance compromises and demonstrate the ability to separate and detect gas mixtures containing analytes of different volatilities and polarities. Furthermore, the use of pressure programming of the KP array was demonstrated to significantly shorten the analysis time while maintaining a high detection resolution. Using this method, we obtained a high resolution detection of 5 alkanes of different volatilities within 5 min. Finally, we successfully detected gas mixtures of various polarities using a tandem-column μGC configuration by installing two on-column optical detectors to obtain complementary chromatograms.

Enantioselective Endocrine-disrupting Effects of Bifenthrin on Hormone Synthesis in Rat Ovarian Cells

Toxicology. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21871944

Bifenthrin (BF), a broad-spectrum and widely used synthetic pyrethroid, is a typical chiral pesticide. More attention is being paid to the health risk assessment of the enantioselective toxicity of BF isomers. In this study, we used rat ovarian granulosa cells as in vitro model to investigate effects of BF enantiomers on the biosynthesis of two hormones, progesterone and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), which are critical for mammalian reproduction. We showed that 1S-cis-BF, but not 1R-cis-BF significantly decreased the secretion of progesterone and PGE2 in granulosa cells. 1S-isomer of BF reduced the expression of genes P450scc, StAR, PBR and DBI, as well as COX-2, which are involved in regulating the rate-limiting steps of progesterone or PGE2 biosynthesis. The transcriptional activation of StAR and COX-2 promoter were disrupted by 1S-cis-BF. Furthermore, activity of protein kinase C (PKC), an important signaling mediator of progesterone and PGE2 synthesis, was differentially inhibited by 1S-cis-BF. The data of molecular docking revealed that one hydrogen bond was formed between 1S-cis-BF and PKC protein. In conclusion, we firstly reported in this study the enantioselective disrupting effects of BF isomers on progesterone and PGE2 synthesis via PKC pathway in rat ovarian cells. Our findings suggest that the enantioselective toxicity of chiral pesticides should be considered for evaluating mammalian reproductive health, a toxicologic endpoint of great concern in health risk assessment.

[Study of Biological Characteristics of the IVpi-189 Virus Derived from Persistent Influenza A Virus-infected Cell Line]

Bing Du Xue Bao = Chinese Journal of Virology / [bian Ji, Bing Du Xue Bao Bian Ji Wei Yuan Hui]. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21874900

To investigate biological characteristics of the IVpi-189 progeny virus derived from the culture of influenza A virus as a live-attenuated vaccine candidate. Persistent infection of a cultured cell line with influenza A virus (MDCK-IVpi) was established by incubating continuously influenza virus-infected cells at a lower temperature. The infectious progeny virus derived from MDCK-IVpi cells at the 189rd subculture was designated as the IVpi-189 strain of influenza virus. The cytopathic effect induced by IVpi-189 virus was observed under different temperature conditions. The production of infectious progeny virus was examined at 38 and 32 degrees C by plaque titration of cell-associated and released virus. IVpi-189 virus showed cytopathic effect as strong as that of IVwt in infected cell line of MDCK at 32 degrees C. However, when culture temperature was raised to 38 degrees C, the cytopathic effect induced by IVpi-189 virus was delayed and less pronounced. Virus growth in IVpi-189 virus-infected cells at 38 degrees C was significantly reduced as compared with that of IVwt virus, although both viruses yielded nearly equivalent high titers of cell-associated and released virus at 32 degrees C. The reasons of the decreased proliferative ability of IVpi-189 virus at high culture temperature were unrelated with virus inactivation or the release of progeny virus, but associated with the decreased replication of infectious progeny virus in the infected cells. IVpi-189 virus derived from MDCK cells infected persistently with influenza A virus showed biological characteristics as a potential live-attenuated vaccine candidate.

Histopathological Classification of Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma

Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention : APJCP. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21875256

This article reviews all related research and reports on nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC) histopathological classifications worldwide. Despite continuous advance of Chinese and international NPC histopathological classification research, it was difficult to unify previous with current China classifications, and the China with World Health Organization (WHO) classifications. For example, non-keratinizing and undifferentiated carcinoma of the WHO NPC classification does not coincide with poorly-differentiated squamous cell carcinoma of the previous China classification. In addition, the incidence rates of different NPC pathological types show obvious regional discrepancies. It suggested that for facilitating Chinese and international NPC research and exchange, NPC histopathological classifications worldwide should be effectively unified.

Determination for Enterobacter Cloacae Based on a Europium Ternary Complex Labeled DNA Probe

Spectrochimica Acta. Part A, Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21880541

The fast detection and accurate diagnosis of the prevalent pathogenic bacteria is very important for the treatment of disease. Nowadays, fluorescence techniques are important tools for diagnosis. A two-probe tandem DNA hybridization assay was designed for the detection of Enterobacter cloacae based on time-resolved fluorescence. In this work, the authors synthesized a novel europium ternary complex Eu(TTA)(3)(5-NH(2)-phen) with intense luminescence, high fluorescence quantum yield and long lifetime before. We developed a method based on this europium complex for the specific detection of original extracted DNA from E. cloacae. In the hybridization assay format, the reporter probe was labeled with Eu(TTA)(3)(5-NH(2)-phen) on the 5'-terminus, and the capture probe capture probe was covalent immobilized on the surface of the glutaraldehyde treated glass slides. The original extracted DNA of samples was directly used without any DNA purification and amplification. The detection was conducted by monitoring the fluorescence intensity from the glass surface after DNA hybridization. The detection limit of the DNA was 5×10(-10) mol L(-1). The results of the present work proved that this new approach was easy to operate with high sensitivity and specificity. It could be conducted as a powerful tool for the detection of pathogen microorganisms in the environment.

Study of the Relationship Between Genetics and Geography in Determining the Quality of Astragali Radix

Biological & Pharmaceutical Bulletin. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21881225

Astragali Radix (AR), prepared from the roots of Astragalus membranaceus (FISCH. ex LINK) BUNGE or its variey, A. membranaceus (FISCH. ex LINK) BUNGE var. mongholicus (BUNGE) HSIAO., is one of the most used and valuable traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs). Historically, Hunyuan, Shanxi Province in China is the geo-authentic producing area of AR and crude AR from here called "geo-authentic." According to tradition, geo-authentic TCMs define both authenticity and quality. However, no scientific investigation has ever determined whether the superior quality of Hunyuan AR is due to the genetic characteristics or to the local environment. In our study, seeds of 30 AR samples representing the two varieties from different regions were cultivated in Hunyuan under the same conditions. A method, using ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with photodiode array detector and evaporative light scattering detectors, was developed to evaluate the quality through a simultaneous determination of four major isoflavonoids and four major saponins. The two AR varieties were successfully distinguished by principal component analysis while samples of the same species with different seeds origins could not be distinguished. A genetic study demonstrated that the internal transcribed spacer sequences of the nuclear ribosomal DNA in A. membranaceus var. mongholicus samples from different geographical regions were highly conservative. These results indicate that the content of active components in AR depends on the interaction of genotype and environment. At the varietal level, genetic properties appear to be more important for pharmaceutical quality than environmental factors, while on the intraspecific level environmental factors might be more important than genetic properties.

No Association of Polymorphisms in the CDK5, NDEL1, and LIS1 with Autism in Chinese Han Population

Psychiatry Research. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21890215

Autism is a pervasive neurodevelopmental disorder. CDK5 (cyclin-dependent kinase 5) and its interacting molecules are involved in neurodevelopment. We performed a family-based association analysis between CDK5, NDEL1, and LIS1 polymorphisms and autism in a Chinese Han population. Our study did not detect a significant association. It indicated that common genetic variations in these genes might not play a role in the genetic predisposition to autism.

Demographics of Apheresis Platelet Donors in Five Blood Centers in China

Transfusion. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21895674

BACKGROUND: Blood component donations by apheresis has become more common in modern blood transfusion practices. However, apheresis donation still remains less common in China. This study describes the demographic profile and transfusion-transmissible infection (TTI) prevalence among donors making apheresis platelet (AP) donations compared to those making whole blood (WB) donations and the differences among five geographically diverse blood centers in China. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: This is a descriptive study using data from all successful donations at the five blood centers in 2008 and 2009. Donor demographic and TTI screening reactive rates were collected for WB and AP donations and blood centers. Logistic regression was used to identify independent factors associated with AP donations. RESULTS: From January 1, 2008, to December 31, 2009, there were 512,594 WB and 26,199 AP donations at five blood centers. AP donations accounted for 4.9% of all donations. AP donations have lower reactive rate than WB donations for hepatitis B virus surface antigen, hepatitis C virus antibodies, human immunodeficiency virus antibodies, and syphilis screening testing. Males, donors older than 25 years old, non-Han donors, and donors with below high school educational level were more likely to make AP donations. The characteristics of AP donations differed among the five Chinese blood centers. CONCLUSION: Our analysis suggests that the characteristics of AP donations in China are different from WB donations and differ among the five Chinese blood centers. Some of the differences are likely due to different recruitment policies. Further studies should be conducted to understand what motivates Chinese blood donors to participate as AP donors.

Preliminary Study of Whole-body Diffusion-weighted Imaging in Detecting Pulmonary Metastatic Lesions from Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma: Comparison with CT

Acta Radiologica (Stockholm, Sweden : 1987). Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21903870

Whole-body diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) has been widely used in detecting malignant metastases, including pulmonary metastases.

Nitroolefin-based Coumarin As a Colorimetric and Fluorescent Dual Probe for Biothiols

Chemical Communications (Cambridge, England). Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21909533

A coumarin-based thiol probe featuring the 1,4-addition reaction of thiols to nitroolefin was reported. The molecular probe exhibited higher selectivity toward biothiols (Cys, Hcy and GSH) than other amino acids.

Increased Susceptibility of ST2-deficient Mice to Polymicrobial Sepsis is Associated with an Impaired Bactericidal Function

Journal of Immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950). Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21911606

ST2, a member of the Toll/IL-1R superfamily, negatively regulates both TLR2 and TLR4 signaling. In this study, we report that ST2-deficient mice were more susceptible to polymicrobial sepsis than their wild-type littermates, with increased production of proinflammatory cytokines. Bacterial clearance from the circulation and visceral organs following polymicrobial infection was markedly impaired in ST2-deficient mice. This was associated with substantially reduced uptake, phagocytosis, and intracellular killing of both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria by ST2-deficient phagocytes. Consistent with a reduced antimicrobial response, phagocytes lacking ST2 displayed a defect in bactericidal activity in response to bacterial challenges with severely impaired phagosome maturation and NOX2 function. Thus, ST2-deficient mice exhibit an increased susceptibility to polymicrobial infection with impaired bacterial clearance, which is associated with defects in phagosome maturation and NOX2-derived production of reactive oxygen species characterized in ST2-deficient phagocytes.

[Effect of Continuous Renal Replacement Therapy Started at Different Time on Patients with Multiple Organ Dysfunction Syndrome]

Zhonghua Yi Xue Za Zhi. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21914312

To explore the effects of continuous renal replacement therapy (CRRT) on serum cytokines and prognosis in multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS) patients based on different therapeutic opportunities.

Molecular Evolution of Adh and LEAFY and the Phylogenetic Utility of Their Introns in Pyrus (Rosaceae)

BMC Evolutionary Biology. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21917170

The genus Pyrus belongs to the tribe Pyreae (the former subfamily Maloideae) of the family Rosaceae, and includes one of the most important commercial fruit crops, pear. The phylogeny of Pyrus has not been definitively reconstructed. In our previous efforts, the internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) revealed a poorly resolved phylogeny due to non-concerted evolution of nrDNA arrays. Therefore, introns of low copy nuclear genes (LCNG) are explored here for improved resolution. However, paralogs and lineage sorting are still two challenges for applying LCNGs in phylogenetic studies, and at least two independent nuclear loci should be compared. In this work the second intron of LEAFY and the alcohol dehydrogenase gene (Adh) were selected to investigate their molecular evolution and phylogenetic utility.

Highly Sensitive Electrochemiluminescence Detection of Single-nucleotide Polymorphisms Based on Isothermal Cycle-assisted Triple-stem Probe with Dual-nanoparticle Label

Analytical Chemistry. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21923133

We report here a new electrochemiluminescence (ECL) approach for detection of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) based on isothermal cycle-assisted triple-stem probe labeled with Au nanoparticles (NPs) and CdTe NPs. The system is composed of a CdS nanocrystals (NCs) film on glassy carbon electrode (GCE) as ECL emitter attached a double-stem DNA probe labeled with Au NPs. Then, the third stem labeled with CdTe NPs hybridizes with the double-stem DNA to form a triple-stem probe with the two labels near the CdS NCs film. A dual-quenched ECL of CdS NCs film is achieved due to energy transfer (ET) from CdS NCs to Au NPs and CdTe NPs, which makes the sensor exhibit relatively low background. Once the one base mutant DNA (mDNA) sequence as target of SNPs analysis displaces the third stem and hybridizes with the double-stem probe, forcing Au NPs away from the CdS NCs film, an ECL enhancement by the ECL-induced surface plasmon resonance of Au NPs is observed. Furthermore, after an isothermal cycle induced by primer, polymerase, and nicking endonuclease (NEase), a further enhancement of ECL is obtained. Taking advantages of the isothermal circular amplification system and the triple-stem probe architecture which enables turning its high selectivity toward specific target sequences, the reported biosensor shows excellent discrimination capabilities of SNPs with high selectivity and low detection limit (35 aM).

Weak Anion Exchange Chromatographic Profiling of Glycoprotein Isoforms on a Polymer Monolithic Capillary

Journal of Chromatography. A. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21925666

High resolution separation of intact glycoproteins, which is essential for many aspects such as finger-print profiling, represents a great challenge because one glycoprotein can exhibit many isoforms with close physicochemical properties. Monolithic columns are important separation media for the separation of intact proteins due to its significant advantages such as easy preparation, high column efficiency and high permeability. However, there are few reports on high resolution profiling of intact glycoproteins. Herein, we presented a polymeric weak anion exchange (WAX) monolithic capillary for high resolution separation of glycoprotein isoforms. A base monolith was first prepared through ring-opening polymerization between tris(2,3-epoxypropyl)isocyanurate and tri(2-aminoethyl), and then modified through reacting with ammonia aqueous solution to convert the unreacted epoxide moieties into primary amino groups. The prepared monolithic capillary was characterized in terms of morphology, pore size, hydrophilicity and reproducibility. The obtained WAX monolithic capillary exhibited desired through-pores and mesopore size, stable skeleton and hydrophilic nature. The performance of the capillary was evaluated using several typical glycoproteins such as α(1)-acid glycoprotein (AGP) as mode analytes. Effects of the experimental parameters on the glycoform resolution were investigated. Under the optimized separation conditions, the tested glycoproteins were all resolved into distinct glycoforms. A comparative investigation with capillary zone electrophoresis (CZE) revealed that this WAX column provided better selectivity as more isoforms were observed, although the resolution of some glycoprotein isoforms decreased.

Haploidentical Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation in Hematologic Malignancies with G-CSF Mobilized Bone Marrow Plus Peripheral Blood Stem Cells Grafts Without T Cell Depletion: a Single Center Report of 29 Cases

Leukemia & Lymphoma. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21929286

Haploidentical Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (Haplo-HSCT) has provided an alternative option since virtually all patients have an immediately available donor. Here, we report the results of Haplo-HSCT with granulocyte-colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) mobilized bone marrow grafts plus peripheral blood stem cells as the grafts without T-cell depletion. Twenty-nine patients with the mean age of 27.27 years (ranging from 15 to 51 years) were enrolled in this study, and 10 cases were in high risk status. The patients received myeloablative preconditioning with or without total body irradiation and acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) prophylaxis consisting of basiliximab, cyclosporine A, methotrexate, mycophenolate mofetil and a rabbit anti-thymocyte globulin. All the patients attained successful neutrophil and platelet recovery. The mean times for neutrophil and platelet recovery were 17.1 and 20.9 days, respectively. During the follow-up at a median time of 30.69 months (ranging from 3 to 76 months), nine patients developed aGVHD grade II-IV, including two developed grade III-IV GVHD after donor lymphocyte infusion. The incidence of cGVHD was 48.3%. 13 patients died within the first two years after transplantation, and the total disease-free survival rate longer than 2 years was 55.2%. These results suggest that G-CSF-primed bone marrow plus peripheral blood stem cell grafts are an appropriate stem cell source for Haplo-HSCT and large scale investigations are needed to confirm this protocol.

Conversion of Molecular Information by Luminescent Nanointerface Self-assembled from Amphiphilic Tb(III) Complexes

Journal of the American Chemical Society. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21932810

A novel amphiphilic Tb(3+) complex (TbL(+)) having anionic bis(pyridine) arms and a hydrophobic alkyl chain is developed. It spontaneously self-assembles in water and gives stable vesicles that show sensitized luminescence of Tb(3+) ions at neutral pH. This TbL(+) complex is designed to show coordinative unsaturation, i.e., water molecules occupy some of the first coordination spheres and are replaceable upon binding of phosphate ions. These features render TbL(+) self-assembling receptor molecules which show increase in the luminescence intensity upon binding of nucleotides. Upon addition of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), significant amplification of luminescent intensity was observed. On the other hand, ADP showed moderately increased luminescence and almost no enhancement was observed for AMP. Very interestingly, the increase in luminescence intensity observed for ATP and ADP showed sigmoidal dependence on the concentration of added nucleotides. It indicates positive cooperative binding of these nucleotides to TbL(+) complexes preorganized on the vesicle surface. Self-assembly of amphiphilic Tb(3+) receptor complexes provides nanointerfaces which selectively convert and amplify molecular information of high energy phosphates linked by phosphoanhydride bonds into luminescence intensity changes.

CD4+CD38+HLA-DR+ Cells: a Predictor of Viral Set Point in Chinese Men with Primary HIV Infection Who Have Sex with Men

Japanese Journal of Infectious Diseases. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21937825

Twenty-three Chinese men with primary HIV infection (PHI) who have sex with men, and 17 asymptomatic HIV-infected patients participated in this study. The effect of different initial activation parameters on viral set points and the immunologic progression of subjects with PHI were determined. We found that the proportions of CD38+DR+ and CD38-DR+ T cells were lower while those of CD38+DR- and CD38-DR- T cells were higher in patients with PHI than in the asymptomatic HIV-infected patients. The initial proportion of CD4+CD38+DR+ T cells emerged as a statistically significant predictor (P < 0.05) of viral set points by multivariate least squares regression. In addition, individuals with a higher initial proportion of CD4+CD38+DR+ cells were more likely to have CD4+ T cell counts decrease to ≤ 350 cells/µl (P = 0.015), as determined by Kaplan-Meier curve analysis. We concluded that the initial CD4+CD38+DR+ T cell level in PHI patients is an important prognostic parameter of viral set points and is therefore related to disease progression.

Microbial Fuel Cell Based Biosensor for in Situ Monitoring of Anaerobic Digestion Process

Bioresource Technology. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21945210

A wall-jet microbial fuel cell (MFC) was developed for the monitoring of anaerobic digestion (AD). This biofilm based MFC biosensor had a character of being portable, short hydraulic retention time (HRT) for sample flow through and convenient for continuous operation. The MFC was installed in the recirculation loop of an upflow anaerobic fixed-bed (UAFB) reactor in bench-scale where pH of the fermentation broth and biogas flow were monitored in real time. External disturbances to the AD were added on purpose by changing feedstock concentration, as well as process configuration. MFC signals had good correlations with online measurements (i.e. pH, gas flow rate) and offline analysis (i.e. COD) over 6-month operation. These results suggest that the MFC signal can reflect the dynamic variation of AD and can potentially be a valuable tool for monitoring and control of bioprocess.

A Prophylactic Effect of an Oligodeoxynucleotide Containing a Cytidine-guanosine Motif Against Japanese Cedar Pollen-induced T-helper Type 2 Allergic Response

The Journal of Asthma : Official Journal of the Association for the Care of Asthma. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21967528

Over 10% of entire population in Japan suffer from allergic diseases induced by Japanese cedar pollen (JCP) every spring. In terms of preventive medicine, it has become a matter of urgency to establish successful prophylactic and therapeutic strategies for controlling the disorders. The effect of an oligodeoxynucleotide containing a cytidine-guanosine motif (CpG ODN) on the regulation of immune responses induced by JCP was investigated in this study.

Heat Shock Protein 10 (Hsp10) in Immune-related Diseases: One Coin, Two Sides

International Journal of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21969171

Heat shock protein 10 (Hsp10) in eukaryotes, originally identified as a mitochondrial chaperone, now is also known to be present in cytosol, cell surface, extracellular space and peripheral blood. Functionally besides participating in mitochondrial protein folding in association with Hsp60, Hsp10 appears to be related to pregnancy, cancer and autoimmune inhibition. Hsp10 can be released to peripheral blood at very early time point of pregnancy and given another name called early pregnancy factor (EPF), which seems to play a critical role in developing a pregnant niche. In malignant disorders, Hsp10 is usually abnormally expressed in the cytosol of malignant cells and further released to extracellular space, resulting in tumor-promoting effect from various aspects. Furthermore, distinct from other heat shock protein members, whose soluble form is recognized as danger signal by immune cells and triggers immune responses, Hsp10 after release, however, is designed to be an inhibitory signal by limiting immune response. This review discusses how Hsp10 participates in various physiological and pathological processes from basic protein molecule folding to pregnancy, cancer and autoimmune diseases, and emphasizes how important the location is for the function exertion of a molecule.

Interdonation Intervals and Patterns of Return Among Blood Donors in Brazil

Transfusion. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21981543

BACKGROUND: In Brazil, most donations come from repeat donors, but there are little data on return behavior of donors. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: Donors who made at least one whole blood donation in 2007 were followed for 2 years using a large multicenter research database. Donation frequency, interdonation intervals, and their association with donor demographics, status, and type of donation were examined among three large blood centers in Brazil, two in the southeast and one in the northeast. RESULTS: In 2007, of 306,770 allogeneic donations, 38.9% came from 95,127 first-time donors and 61.1% from 149,664 repeat donors. Through December 31, 2009, a total of 28.1% of first-time donors and 56.5% of repeat donors had donated again. Overall, the median interdonation interval was approximately 6 months. Among men it was 182 and 171 days for first-time and repeat donors, and among women, 212 and 200 days. Predictors of return behavior among first-time donors were male sex (odds ratio [OR], 1.17; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.13-1.20), community donation (OR, 2.26; 95% CI, 2.20-2.33), and age 24 years or less (OR, 0.62-0.89 for donors ≥25 years). Among repeat donors predictors were male sex (OR, 1.35; 95% CI, 1.32-1.39), age 35 years or more (OR, 1.08-1.18 vs. ≤24 years), and community donation (OR, 2.39; 95% CI, 2.33-2.44). Differences in return by geographic region were evident with higher return rates in the northeast of Brazil. CONCLUSION: These data highlight the need to develop improved communication strategies for first-time and replacement donors to convert them into repeat community donors.

Anticoagulant, Anti-aggregation and Antithrombotic Effects of a Novel Hexapeptide

The Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21988426

Hexapeptide is a novel synthetic oligopeptide with a structure similar to that of eptifibatide. This study was designed to investigate the anticoagulant, anti-aggregation, disaggregation and anti-thrombogenesis effects of hexapeptide.

Nanostructure Control of Graphene-composited TiO2 by a One-step Solvothermal Approach for High Performance Dye-sensitized Solar Cells

Nanoscale. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22006266

We present a one-step solvothermal approach to prepare uniform graphene-TiO(2) nanocomposites with delicately controlled TiO(2) nanostructures, including ultra-small 2 nm nanoparticles, 12 nm nanoparticles and nanorods. Using three composites as photoanode materials, the effect of nanostructure of graphene-composited TiO(2) on the performance of dye-sensitized solar cells was investigated, and results showed that the ultra-small 2 nm TiO(2)-graphene composite based photoanode exhibited the highest power conversion efficiency of 7.25%.

[Comparative Study of Wild and Cultivated Astragali Radix in Daqingshan District in Wuchuan of Neimenggu]

Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi = Zhongguo Zhongyao Zazhi = China Journal of Chinese Materia Medica. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22007536

To make a comparative study on wild and cultivated Astragali Radix in Wuchuan, Neimenggu where is one of the geo-authentic producing areas of Astragalus membranaceus var. mongholicus.

The TGF-{beta}1/Smad/CTGF Pathway and Corpus Cavernosum Fibrous-Muscular Alterations in Rats with Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetes

Journal of Andrology. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22016353

Diabetes-associated erectile dysfunction is associated with increased extracellular matrix deposition and reduced smooth muscle content in the corpus cavernosum. The mechanisms of these processes are not well understood. In this study we investigated fibro-muscular changes in the corpus cavernosum of rats with streptozotocin-induced diabetes and determine the mechanisms underlying pathological changes in penile structure and function. Forty 8-week-old Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly distributed into control and diabetic groups. Diabetes was induced by a one-time intraperitoneal injection of streptozotocin (60 mg/kg). Twelve weeks later, erectile function was measured by cavernous nerve electrostimulation with real time intracorporal pressure assessment. The penis was harvested for the histological examination (Masson's trichrome stain, picrosirius red stain, Hart's elastin stain, TUNEL, and immunohistochemistry) and Western blot. Diabetes significantly attenuated erectile response to cavernous nerve electrostimulation. Diabetic animals exhibited a decreased smooth muscle/collagen ratio in the corpus cavernosum. The ratio of collagen I to II fibers was significantly lower in the corpora of diabetic rats compared to controls. Cavernous elastic fibers were fragmented in diabetic rats. There was up-regulation of the TGF-β1/Smad/CTGF signaling pathway in diabetic rats. Phospho-Smad2 expression was higher in smooth muscle cells and fibroblasts of diabetic rats, as was the apoptotic index. The up-regulation of the TGF-β1/Smad/CTGF signaling pathway might play an important role in diabetes-induced Fibrous-Muscular structural changes and deterioration of erectile function.

[Cloning of Blakeslea Trispora CarRA Gene by PCR-driven Overlap Extension and Construction of an Activity Detection System]

Sheng Wu Gong Cheng Xue Bao = Chinese Journal of Biotechnology. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22016982

Blakeslea trispora CarRA has both lycopene cyclase and phytoene synthase activity. In order to analyze the double functional activity of CarRA proteins and to detect the active sites of lycopene cyclase, we constructed two detection systems in Escherichia coli by color complementary. Through PCR-driven overlap extension we got carRA gene cDNA, then constructed prokaryotes expression vector pET28a-carRA. pET28a-carRA with plasmid pAC-LYC carrying crtl/crtB/crtE gene clusters were co-transformed to BL21(DE3) to validate lycopene cyclase activity. We constructed the plasmid pAC-LYC delta (crtB) carrying crtl/crtE gene clusters, then co-transtormed them with pET28a-carRA to BL21(DE3) to validate phytoene synthase activity. Based on color complementary, and HPLC analysis of metabolites, we confirmed that the CarRA protein activity detection system was reliable. Our study provides a screening model for specific mutation of lycopene cyclase without affecting phytoene synthase activity.

[Study on the Chemical Constituents of Rumex Patientia]

Zhong Yao Cai = Zhongyaocai = Journal of Chinese Medicinal Materials. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22017004

OBJECTIVE : To study the chemical constituents of roots of Rumex patientia.

Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes for Anticancer Drug Delivery

Expert Review of Medical Devices. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22026621

In vitro and in vivo results reflect that functionalized carbon nanotubes (f-CNTs) are promising for the development of unique delivery systems of anticancer drugs. Functionalization of CNTs and drug loading are realized by covalent attachment and/or physical approaches. Poly(ethylene glycol) is the most adopted species for functionalization, which can increase the dispersity in aqueous solution and biocompatibility of CNTs. Several types of anticancer drugs, such as paclitaxel and doxorubicin, are loaded onto f-CNTs and their treatment efficacy has been demonstrated in vitro and in vivo. However, f-CNTs of well-controlled structures, such as uniform length and well-defined chemistry, which are not available so far, are important to solve the current controversy over the mechanisms of cell uptake of f-CNTs, and are a prerequisite to investigate whether f-CNTs can be platform materials for anticancer drug delivery with improved efficacy.

Mobile Phone-enabled Control of Medical Care and Handicapped Assistance

Expert Review of Medical Devices. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22029471

Mobile phones are now playing an ever more crucial role in people's daily lives. They are serving not only as a way of talking and delivering messages, but also for exchanging various information. Nevertheless, the functional limit of the phone is still far from being reached. Among the many promising applications, using mobile phones as an actuating element to control data or devices is useful in quite a few emerging medical care and handicapped assistance settings owing to its wireless communication feature. In this article, selected progresses of mobile phone-enabled controlling have been summarized, with more focus on evaluating its emerging roles in medical care. Several typical applications in the area are illustrated and some potential technical challenges and key issues worthy of pursuit are outlined. The intent of the article is to provide an elementary knowledge for people with different backgrounds, such as electrical or biomedical engineers, as well as people who are working on interdisciplinary areas. It is expected that medical care at any time and anywhere will be possible via the actuation platform provided by the mobile phone and mobile medicine will be pushed forward to a new height in the coming years.

TBX3 Over-expression Causes Mammary Gland Hyperplasia and Increases Mammary Stem-like Cells in an Inducible Transgenic Mouse Model

BMC Developmental Biology. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22039763

The T-box transcription factor TBX3 is necessary for early embryonic development and for the normal development of the mammary gland. Homozygous mutations, in mice, are embryonic lethal while heterozygous mutations result in perturbed mammary gland development. In humans, mutations that result in the haploinsufficiency of TBX3 causes Ulnar Mammary Syndrome (UMS) characterized by mammary gland hypoplasia as well as other congenital defects. In addition to its role in mammary gland development, various studies have also supported a role for Tbx3 in breast cancer development. TBX3 is over-expressed in various breast cancer cell lines as well as cancer tissue and has been found to contribute to breast cancer cell migration. Previous studies have suggested that TBX3 contributes to cancer development by its ability to bypass senescence by repressing the expression of p14(ARF)-tumor suppressor. Although many studies have shown that a dysregulation of TBX3 expression may contribute to cancer progression, no direct evidence shows TBX3 causes breast cancer.

Evidence for Inter- and Intra-clade Recombinations in Rabies Virus

Infection, Genetics and Evolution : Journal of Molecular Epidemiology and Evolutionary Genetics in Infectious Diseases. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22041506

Homologous recombination is considered rare in negative-strand RNA viruses and has not been reported for rabies virus. In this study, full-length genomes of 44 rabies virus strains were analyzed for potential homologous recombination events. Phylogenetic analysis classified these strains into three clades. By applying six different recombination detection methods, one inter-clade and one intra-clade potential recombination events were identified with high confidence values. Software-predicted recombination break points of the two events were all located within the polymerase gene. This report presents the first evidence suggesting the possibility of homologous recombination in rabies virus, which could provide valuable insights for understanding the diversity and evolution of rabies virus as well as other negative-strand RNA viruses.

Ratiometric Fluorescence Detection of Cyanide Based on a Hybrid Coumarin-hemicyanine Dye: the Large Emission Shift and the High Selectivity

Chemical Communications (Cambridge, England). Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22045110

A new ratiometric fluorescent cyanide probe was developed based on the nucleophilic attack of CN(-) toward the indolium group of a hybrid coumarin-hemicyanine dye, by which high selectivity as well as large emission shift could be achieved.

The Gold (III) Porphyrin Complex, Gold-2a, Suppresses WNT1 Expression in Breast Cancer Cells by Enhancing the Promoter Association of YY1

American Journal of Translational Research. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22046489

The gold (III) porphyrin complex, gold-2a, elicits anti-tumor activity by targeting the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway [Chow KH et al, Cancer Research 2010;70(1):329-37]. Here, the molecular mechanisms underlying the inhibitory effects of this compound on WNT1 gene expression were elucidated further. A response element to gold-2a was identified located within the -1290 to -1112 nt region of the WNT1 promoter, containing a binding site for the transcription regulator Yin Yang 1 (YY1). Gold-2a promoted the association of YY1 and suppressor of zeste 12 (Suz12; a component of the polycomb repressor complex 2) with the WNT1 promoter. Under normal culture conditions, the intracellular translocalization of YY1 was synchronized with cell cycle progression and WNT1 expression. Gold-2a promoted the nuclear accumulation and abolished the nuclear exportation of YY1, resulting in a persistent inhibition of WNT1 expression and a cell cycle arrest at G1/S phase. A dimorphic role of YY1 in regulating cell proliferation and division was revealed. Thus, the present study extends the understanding of the anti-tumor mechanism of gold-2a to the epigenetic level, which involves the modulation of the dynamic interactions between YY1 and a specific region of the WNT1 promoter.

Endothelial Nitric Oxide Synthase Gene Polymorphisms (G894T, 4b/a and T-786C) and Preeclampsia: Meta-Analysis of 18 Case-Control Studies

DNA and Cell Biology. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22054068

Studies investigating the association between endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) gene polymorphisms and preeclampsia reported contradictory or nonconclusive results. We performed a meta-analysis of 18 genetic association studies that examined the relationship between preeclampsia and the G894T, 4a/b and T-786C polymorphisms of the eNOS gene. Subgroup analysis by ethnicity and potential sources of heterogeneity and bias were explored. The MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Google Scholar databases were searched to access the relevant genetic association studies up to June 2011. For the allelic analysis of the G894T variant, all studies showed no significant association. For the genotypic analysis, the combined studies of the G allele showed negative significance (odds ratio [OR]=0.56; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.33-0.97), all the studies showed positively significance when the T allele was combined (OR=1.17; 95% CI: 1.01-1.36), and results were also positively significant in non-Asian populations (OR=1.20; 95% CI: 1.02-1.43). For the allelic analysis of the 4b/a variant, all studies showed no significant association, but results were negatively significant in non-Asian populations (OR=0.67; 95% CI: 0.46-0.98). For the genotype analysis, combined studies of the b allele showed negative significance (OR=0.55; 95% CI: 0.36-0.84). Moreover, non-Asian studies showed negatively significant results (OR=0.45; 95% CI: 0.28-0.72). For the analysis of the T-786C variant, none of the studies showed significant results. The synthesis of available evidence supports the fact that intron 4a allele, homozygosity for the 894T and intron 4a of eNOS are positively associated with preeclampsia. Large, multiethnic confirmatory, and well-designed studies are needed to determine the relation between preeclampsia and polymorphisms of the eNOS gene.

Nuclear and Chloroplast SSR Markers in Paeonia Delavayi (Paeoniaceae) and Cross-species Amplification in P. Ludlowii

American Journal of Botany. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22074777

• Premise of the study: Microsatellite primers were developed for Paeonia delavayi and P. ludlowii (Paeoniaceae) to study their population genetics and phytogeography. • Methods and Results: Nine polymorphic nuclear microsatellite loci were isolated from an enriched library of P. delavayi and primers were designed. The number of alleles per locus ranged from two to 16; the observed and expected heterozygosities ranged from 0.014 to 0.687 and 0.042 to 0.875, respectively. Six polymorphic chloroplast microsatellite loci were identified in P. delavayi and primers were provided. The number of alleles per locus ranged from two to six and the polymorphic information content ranged from 0.08 to 0.716. Both nuclear and chloroplast primers were successfully applicable to P. ludlowii. • Conclusions: The markers developed here will facilitate analyses of genetic diversity, population genetic structure, phytogeographical patterns, and conservation for P. delavayi and P. ludlowii.

An Embryonic Stem Cell-based System for Rapid Analysis of Transcriptional Enhancers

Genesis (New York, N.Y. : 2000). Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22083581

With the growing use of genome-wide screens for cis-regulatory elements, there is a pressing need for platforms that enable fast and cost-effective experimental validation of identified hits in relevant developmental and tissue contexts. Here, we describe a murine embryonic stem cell (ESC)-based system that facilitates rapid analysis of putative transcriptional enhancers. Candidate enhancers are targeted with high efficiency to a defined genomic locus via recombinase-mediated cassette exchange. Targeted ESCs are subsequently differentiated in vitro into desired cell types, where enhancer activity is monitored by reporter gene expression. As a proof of principle, we analyzed a previously characterized, Sonic hedgehog (Shh)-dependent, V3 interneuron progenitor (pV3)-specific enhancer for the Nkx2.2 gene, and observed highly specific enhancer activity. Given the broad potential of ESCs to generate a spectrum of cell types, this system can serve as an effective platform for the characterization of gene regulatory networks controlling cell fate specification and cell function. genesis 1-8, 2012. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

[Cisplatin Enhances TRAIL-induced Apoptosis in Gastric Cancer Cells Through Clustering Death Receptor 4 into Lipid Rafts]

Zhonghua Zhong Liu Za Zhi [Chinese Journal of Oncology]. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22093622

Gastric cancer cells are insensitive to tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL). To sensitize gastric cancer cells to TRAIL, we treated gastric cancer MGC803 cells with TRAIL and cisplatin.

A Functional Polymorphism in the Epidermal Growth Factor Gene Is Associated with Risk for Glioma in a Chinese Population

Genetic Testing and Molecular Biomarkers. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22106858

Epidermal growth factor (EGF) plays a key role in survival of neural and glial precursor cells. A single nucleotide polymorphism of the EGF gene +61G/A in the 5'-untranslated region has been reported to be associated with susceptibility to glioma. The purpose of this study was to investigate the potential association between EGF +61G/A and brain glioma in a Chinese population. A case-control study involving 180 patients with glioma and 360 controls was done. Polymerase chain reaction restriction fragment-length polymorphism assay was used to analyze the EGF +61G/A genotypes. Patients with glioma had a significantly higher frequency of AA genotype (odds ratio, 2.25; 95% confidence interval, 1.20, 4.21; p=0.01] than controls. When stratified by histologic features and World Health Organization grade of glioma, distribution of each genotype did not significantly differ. Our data suggested that the EGF +61G AA genotype was associated with a higher glioma risk in a Chinese population. This finding is in contrast with previous studies that reported G allele as a risk factor for glioma in white patients.

Probiotics for Treating Persistent Diarrhea in Children

The American Journal of Nursing. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22112890

Modeling the Basal Dynamics of P53 System

PloS One. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22114721

The tumor suppressor p53 has become one of most investigated genes. Once activated by stress, p53 leads to cellular responses such as cell cycle arrest and apoptosis.

Biocompatibility of Fe₃O₄@Au Composite Magnetic Nanoparticles in Vitro and in Vivo

International Journal of Nanomedicine. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22131827

This research was conducted to assess the biocompatibility of the core-shell Fe(3)O(4)@ Au composite magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs), which have potential application in tumor hyperthermia.

Immunohistochemical Expressions of Fatty Acid Synthase and Phosphorylated C-Met in Thyroid Carcinomas of Follicular Origin

International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Pathology. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22135723

Thyroid carcinoma is the most common endocrine malignancy and the first cause of death among endocrine cancers. Fatty acid synthase (FASN) and c-Met are overexpressed in many types of human cancers. Recent studies have suggested a functional interaction between FASN and c-Met. However, their roles in thyroid carcinomas have not been fully investigated. In this study, we evaluated the expressions of FASN and phosphorylated (p)-c-Met by using immunohistochemistry in thyroid carcinomas of follicular origin, from 32 patients. The adjacent non-neoplastic thyroid tissue was also evaluated for comparison. Immunoreactive intensity and extensiveness were semi-quantified. The overexpression of FASN was observed in a subset of papillary thyroid carcinomas (PTC) including the classical type and tall cell, follicular, trabecular/insular and diffuse sclerosing variants, a subset of follicular thyroid carcinomas (FTC), and the PTC and FTC components in anaplastic thyroid carcinomas (ATC). No overexpression was observed in the ATCs per se and the columnar cell, solid, and cribriform variants of PTCs. All Hürthle cell variant FTCs and non-neoplastic Hürthle cells demonstrated positive staining for FASN while the non-neoplastic follicular cells without Hürthle cell change were negative. An association in overexpression between FASN and p-c-Met was observed in the majority of carcinomas as well as in the non-neoplastic Hürthle cells. In conclusion, overexpressions of FASN and p-c-Met were observed in a subset of thyroid carcinomas of follicular origin, which may be of values for targeted therapy and predicting prognosis while the positive immunostaining for these immunomarkers may be nonspecific for Hürthle cell thyroid carcinomas.

Elevated Expression of PEG10 in Human Placentas from Preeclamptic Pregnancies

Acta Histochemica. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22137777

The aim of this study was to determine qualitative and quantitative changes in paternally expressed gene 10 (PEG10) expression in preeclamptic placentas. Placental tissues were obtained immediately after delivery from women with normal pregnancies (n=20) and patients with preeclampsia (n=20). Quantitative real-time RT-PCR, Western blot analysis and immunohistochemistry were used to determine PEG10 gene expression and localization in placental tissues. Compared with the normal group, PEG10 was highly expressed at both mRNA and protein levels in preeclampsia (P<0.05). In immunohistochemical staining, PEG10 was present in the syncytiotrophoblast, cytotrophoblast, endothelial cell and stroma of all placentas. Notably, the intensity of PEG10 expression in the syncytiotrophoblast, cytotrophoblast and stem villi was much higher in preeclampsia than in normal. In conclusion, elevated expression of PEG10 is likely to be involved in the pathophysiology of preeclampsia. Further studies are needed to elucidate the precise role of PEG10 in preeclampsia.

Melanocortin-4 Receptor in the Medial Amygdala Regulates Emotional Stress-induced Anxiety-like Behaviour, Anorexia and Corticosterone Secretion

The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology / Official Scientific Journal of the Collegium Internationale Neuropsychopharmacologicum (CINP). Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22176700

The central melanocortin system has been implicated in emotional stress-induced anxiety, anorexia and activation of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. However, the underlying neural substrates have not been identified. The medial amygdala (MeA) is highly sensitive to emotional stress and expresses high levels of the melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R). This study investigated the effects of activation and blockade of MC4R in the MeA on anxiety-like behaviour, food intake and corticosterone secretion. We demonstrate that MC4R-expressing neurons in the MeA were activated by acute restraint stress, as indicated by induction of c-fos mRNA expression. Infusion of a selective MC4R agonist into the MeA elicited anxiogenic-like effects in the elevated plus-maze test and decreased food intake. In contrast, local MeA infusion of SHU 9119, a MC4R antagonist, blocked restraint stress-induced anxiogenic and anorectic effects. Moreover, plasma corticosterone levels were increased by intra-MeA infusion of the MC4R agonist under non-stressed conditions and restraint stress-induced elevation of plasma corticosterone levels was attenuated by pretreatment with SHU 9119 in the MeA. Thus, stimulating MC4R in the MeA induces stress-like anxiogenic and anorectic effects as well as activation of the HPA axis, whereas antagonizing MC4R in this region blocks such effects induced by restraint stress. Together, our results implicate MC4R signalling in the MeA in behavioural and endocrine responses to stress.

[Congenital Syphillis Presenting Congenital Nephrotic Syndrome in Two Children and Related Data Review]

Beijing Da Xue Xue Bao. Yi Xue Ban = Journal of Peking University. Health Sciences. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22178846

To study the clinical features of congenital syphillis presenting congenital nephrotic syndrome(CNS) in children.

Erratum To: Epidemiological Characteristics of Adult SCIWORA in Tianjin, China: a Preliminary Study

European Spine Journal : Official Publication of the European Spine Society, the European Spinal Deformity Society, and the European Section of the Cervical Spine Research Society. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22183891

Comprehensive Analysis of Tandem Amino Acid Repeats from Ten Angiosperm Genomes

BMC Genomics. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22195734

ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The presence of tandem amino acid repeats (AARs) is one of the signatures of eukaryotic proteins. AARs were thought to be frequently involved in bio-molecular interactions. Comprehensive studies that primarily focused on metazoan AARs have suggested that AARs are evolving rapidly and are highly variable among species. However, there is still controversy over causal factors of this inter-species variation. In this work, we attempted to investigate this topic mainly by comparing AARs in orthologous proteins from ten angiosperm genomes. RESULTS: Angiosperm AAR content is positively correlated with the GC content of the protein coding sequence. However, based on observations from fungal AARs and insect AARs, we argue that the applicability of this kind of correlation is limited by AAR residue composition and species' life history traits. Angiosperm AARs also tend to be fast evolving and structurally disordered, supporting the results of comprehensive analyses of metazoans. The functions of conserved long AARs are summarized. Finally, we propose that the rapid mRNA decay rate, alternative splicing and tissue specificity are regulatory processes that are associated with angiosperm proteins harboring AARs. CONCLUSIONS: Our investigation suggests that GC content is a predictor of AAR content in the protein coding sequence under certain conditions. Although angiosperm AARs lack conservation and 3D structure, a fraction of the proteins that contain AARs may be functionally important and are under extensive regulation in plant cells.

A Poised Chromatin Platform for TGF-β Access to Master Regulators

Cell. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22196728

Specific chromatin marks keep master regulators of differentiation silent yet poised for activation by extracellular signals. We report that nodal TGF-β signals use the poised histone mark H3K9me3 to trigger differentiation of mammalian embryonic stem cells. Nodal receptors induce the formation of companion Smad4-Smad2/3 and TRIM33-Smad2/3 complexes. The PHD-Bromo cassette of TRIM33 facilitates binding of TRIM33-Smad2/3 to H3K9me3 and H3K18ac on the promoters of mesendoderm regulators Gsc and Mixl1. The crystal structure of this cassette, bound to histone H3 peptides, illustrates that PHD recognizes K9me3, and Bromo binds an adjacent K18ac. The interaction between TRIM33-Smad2/3 and H3K9me3 displaces the chromatin-compacting factor HP1γ, making nodal response elements accessible to Smad4-Smad2/3 for Pol II recruitment. In turn, Smad4 increases K18 acetylation to augment TRIM33-Smad2/3 binding. Thus, nodal effectors use the H3K9me3 mark as a platform to switch master regulators of stem cell differentiation from the poised to the active state.

Cytotoxic Cardenolides from the Stems of Periploca Forrestii

Steroids. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22212302

Six new cardenolides, periforosides D-E (1-2), periforgenin C (3) and periforosides F-H (4-6), as well as 10 previously identified cardenolides (7-16) were isolated from the ethanol extract of the stems of Periploca forrestii. The structures of the new compounds were determined using extensive spectroscopic analyses including HRESI-MS, 1D and 2D NMR data. Evaluation of the cytotoxic activity of all the isolated compounds in five different human cancer cell lines indicated that compounds 2-6, 8, 9 and 12-16 have potent activity.

On-line Preconcentration of Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate-protein Complexes Using Electrokinetic Supercharging Method with a Prefilled Water Plug in Capillary Sieving Electrophoresis

Se Pu = Chinese Journal of Chromatography / Zhongguo Hua Xue Hui. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22233073

An electrokinetic supercharging (EKS) method with a prefilled water plug at the head column of capillary was developed for on-line preconcentration of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS)-protein complexes in capillary sieving electrophoresis (CSE). Conventional EKS is a combination of electrokinetic injection with transient isotachophoresis (tr-ITP). The capillary is first filled with background electrolyte, then an appropriate amount of a leading electrolyte is filled and electro-injection is carried out for certain duration. After that, terminating electrolyte is filled, and tr-ITP is subsequently initiated, followed by capillary electrophoresis (CE) separation. In this work, the performance of EKS was evaluated by integrating multiple sub-methods step by step, and a water plug containing polymer was introduced before electrokinetic injection in order to further improve the concentration effect. The positive effects of the sub-methods were verified, including molecular sieving effect of polymer, field enhanced sample injection (FESI) with and without a water plug, and transient isotachophoretic electrophoresis-based FESI. It was observed that analyte discrimination usually encountered in conventional electrokinetic injection was eliminated due to the similar charge to mass ratios of SDS-protein complexes. Based on these results, a hybrid on-line preconcentration method, EKS with injecting a water plug containing polymer before sample electrokinetic injection, was proposed and used to indiscriminately preconcentrate SDS-protein complexes, which provided a sensitivity enhancement factor of more than 1000. It was very suitable for the analysis of low-abundance proteins, providing the information of their molecular mass.

[Study on Mobile Phone Enabled Wireless Detection of Saliva Glucose]

Zhongguo Yi Liao Qi Xie Za Zhi = Chinese Journal of Medical Instrumentation. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22242375

In this study, based on the correlation between the blood and saliva glucose, we proposed and developed a new conceptual method of using mobile phone to measure wirelessly the glucose concentration in saliva. According to the experiments on simulated saliva, the new system could draw, display, store and carry out calculation on the correlation curves between saliva glucose and electrical parameters. This demonstrates the feasibility and bright future of the new technique.

[Simultaneous Determination of Ibuprofen and Arginine in Ibuprofen Injection Using Ultra Performance Liquid Chromatography]

Se Pu = Chinese Journal of Chromatography / Zhongguo Hua Xue Hui. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22268358

An ultra performance liquid chromatography-photodiode array detector (UPLC-PDA) method was developed for the determination of ibuprofen and the solubilizer arginine in ibuprofen injection. 2,4-Dinitroflurobenzene (DNFB) was used as the precolumn derivatization reagent. The separation of ibuprofen and arginine derivative was performed on a BEH C18 column (50 mm x 2. 1 mm, 1.7 microm) with the mobile phase consisting of acetonitrile-0. 05 mol/L potassium dihydrogen phosphate (pH 2. 5) in a gradient elution mode at a flow rate of 0.4 mL/min. Ultraviolet absorption detection wavelengths were set at 357 nm for arginine derivative and 220 nm for ibuprofen. The column temperature was set at 30 degrees C. Good linearities were obtained in the ranges of 2.0 - 100.5 mg/L for ibuprofen and 1.7 - 84.5 mg/L for arginine, both with the correlation coefficients (r) of 0. 999 7. The spiked recoveries were 99. 8% and 99. 6% with the relative standard deviations (RSDs) of 0. 37% and 0. 25% for ibuprofen and arginine, respectively. Their respective limits of quantification (LOQs) (S/N = 10) were 0. 1 ng and 0. 2 ng, and the limits of detection (LODs) (S/N= 3) were 0.03 ng and 0.05 ng. The results demonstrated that the proposed method is simple, accurate, reproducible and suitable for the quality control of ibuprofen injection.

Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma of the Spleen Accompanying with Hepatic Cyst: Report of a Case and Review of the Literature

Journal of Research in Medical Sciences : the Official Journal of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22279467

Primary malignant fibrous histiocytoma (MFH) of the spleen is extremely rare. Since the first description of primary splenic MFH reported by Govoni et al in 1982, to the best of our knowledge, only 13 cases of MFH of the spleen have been reported in the English language literature in Medline. We herein report a rare case of primary splenic MFH accompanying with hepatic cyst in a 48-year-old Chinese female who treated successfully by laparoscopic splenectomy and fenestration, which has not yet been reported in the literature. Compared with the 13 previously cases of MFH of the spleen, our case is the first case accompanied with other disease, and also the first case treated successfully by laparoscopic splenectomy. A literature review of MFH of the spleen previously reported in the English language literature in Medline is also provided.

Solid Pseudopapillary Tumor of the Pancreas in a Pregnant Woman

Acta Gastro-enterologica Belgica. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22319967

Solid pseudopapillary tumor (SPT) of the pancreas is a rare neoplasm of low malignant potential that mostly affects young women in the second or third decade of life. The number of such patients reported in the literature has increased in recent years, while SPT in pregnancy is extremely rare. To the best of our knowledge, only one case of SPT in pregnancy has been reported in the English-language literature. We herein report a case of asymptomatic SPT in a 26-year-old Chinese female in the 14th week of pregnancy, and present our experience of the surgical management of SPT in pregnancy.

[Trend of Changes on Incidence and Pathological Proportions of Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma in Zhongshan City, Guangdong Province, During 1970 - 2007]

Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Liuxingbingxue Zazhi. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22336551

To understand the nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) incidence and pathological changes in Zhongshan city, during 1970 - 2007.

Mutation Analysis of PAX6 in a Chinese Family and a Patient with a Presumed Sporadic Case of Congenital Aniridia

Ophthalmic Research. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21691140

Mutations in the PAX6 are the major cause of congenital aniridia. The objective of this study was to analyze genetic mutations in PAX6 in Chinese patients with congenital aniridia.

Association of Self-reported Snoring with Carotid Artery Intima-media Thickness and Plaque

Journal of Sleep Research. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21752134

Previous studies have suggested that self-reported snoring is associated with atherosclerotic vascular diseases. However, the role of self-reported snoring as an independent risk factor for subclinical atherosclerosis has not been well established. This study aimed to evaluate whether and to what extent self-reported snoring is associated with subclinical carotid atherosclerosis after adjusting for traditional cardiovascular risk factors. Carotid intima-media thickness and plaque were investigated with ultrasonography in 1245 urban Chinese aged 50-79 years between September 2007 and November 2007. Information on self-reported snoring and measurements of traditional cardiovascular risk factors was also collected. A total of 1050 participants were involved in the final analysis. The prevalence of self-reported snoring habitually (snoring frequency ≥5 days per week) was 31.5, and 64.3% of the participants in this population had a history of snoring. The mean values of the maximum intima-media thickness of bifurcation and common carotid arteries in snorers were significantly higher than in non-snorers (1.08 ± 0.14 mm versus 1.04 ± 0.14 mm, P < 0.001, in carotid bifurcation; 1.03 ± 0.15 mm versus 1.00 ± 0.15 mm, P = 0.002, in common carotid artery). After adjustment for traditional cardiovascular risk factors, logistic regression analysis showed that the odds ratio of self-reported snoring habitually for increased intima-media thickness and carotid bifurcation plaque was 1.71 [95% confidence interval (CI): 1.22-2.39; P = 0.002] and 3.63 (95% CI: 2.57-5.12; P < 0.001), respectively. In conclusion, the current study suggested that self-reported snoring is associated significantly with carotid bifurcation intima-media thickness and the presence of plaque, independent of traditional cardiovascular risk factors.

Number of Recent Sexual Partners Among Blood Donors in Brazil: Associations with Donor Demographics, Donation Characteristics, and Infectious Disease Markers

Transfusion. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21756264

Brazilian blood centers ask candidate blood donors about the number of sexual partners in the past 12 months. Candidates who report a number over the limit are deferred. We studied the implications of this practice on blood safety.

Morphology Enabled Dipole Inversion for Quantitative Susceptibility Mapping Using Structural Consistency Between the Magnitude Image and the Susceptibility Map

NeuroImage. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21925276

The magnetic susceptibility of tissue can be determined in gradient echo MRI by deconvolving the local magnetic field with the magnetic field generated by a unit dipole. This Quantitative Susceptibility Mapping (QSM) problem is unfortunately ill-posed. By transforming the problem to the Fourier domain, the susceptibility appears to be undersampled only at points where the dipole kernel is zero, suggesting that a modest amount of additional information may be sufficient for uniquely resolving susceptibility. A Morphology Enabled Dipole Inversion (MEDI) approach is developed that exploits the structural consistency between the susceptibility map and the magnitude image reconstructed from the same gradient echo MRI. Specifically, voxels that are part of edges in the susceptibility map but not in the edges of the magnitude image are considered to be sparse. In this approach an L1 norm minimization is used to express this sparsity property. Numerical simulations and phantom experiments are performed to demonstrate the superiority of this L1 minimization approach over the previous L2 minimization method. Preliminary brain imaging results in healthy subjects and in patients with intracerebral hemorrhages illustrate that QSM is feasible in practice.

Exogenous Plant MIR168a Specifically Targets Mammalian LDLRAP1: Evidence of Cross-kingdom Regulation by MicroRNA

Cell Research. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21931358

Our previous studies have demonstrated that stable microRNAs (miRNAs) in mammalian serum and plasma are actively secreted from tissues and cells and can serve as a novel class of biomarkers for diseases, and act as signaling molecules in intercellular communication. Here, we report the surprising finding that exogenous plant miRNAs are present in the sera and tissues of various animals and that these exogenous plant miRNAs are primarily acquired orally, through food intake. MIR168a is abundant in rice and is one of the most highly enriched exogenous plant miRNAs in the sera of Chinese subjects. Functional studies in vitro and in vivo demonstrated that MIR168a could bind to the human/mouse low-density lipoprotein receptor adapter protein 1 (LDLRAP1) mRNA, inhibit LDLRAP1 expression in liver, and consequently decrease LDL removal from mouse plasma. These findings demonstrate that exogenous plant miRNAs in food can regulate the expression of target genes in mammals.

Infrasound Increases Intracellular Calcium Concentration and Induces Apoptosis in Hippocampi of Adult Rats

Molecular Medicine Reports. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21946944

In the present study, we determined the effect of infrasonic exposure on apoptosis and intracellular free Ca²⁺ ([Ca²⁺]i) levels in the hippocampus of adult rats. Adult rats were randomly divided into the control and infrasound exposure groups. For infrasound treatment, animals received infrasonic exposure at 90 (8 Hz) or 130 dB (8 Hz) for 2 h per day. Hippocampi were dissected, and isolated hippocampal neurons were cultured. The [Ca²⁺]i levels in hippocampal neurons from adult rat brains were determined by Fluo-3/AM staining with a confocal microscope system on days 1, 7, 14, 21 and 28 following infrasonic exposure. Apoptosis was evaluated by Annexin V-FITC and propidium iodide double staining. Positive cells were sorted and analyzed by flow cytometry. Elevated [Ca²⁺]i levels were observed on days 14 and 21 after rats received daily treatment with 90 or 130 dB sound pressure level (SPL) infrasonic exposure (p<0.01 vs. control). The highest levels of [Ca²⁺]i were detected in the 130 dB SPL infrasonic exposure group. Meanwhile, apoptosis in hippocampal neurons was found to increase on day 7 following 90 dB SPL infrasound exposure, and significantly increased on day 14. Upon 130 dB infrasound treatment, apoptosis was first observed on day 14, whereas the number of apoptotic cells gradually decreased thereafter. Additionally, a marked correlation between cell apoptosis and [Ca²⁺]i levels was found on day 14 and 21 following daily treatment with 90 and 130 dB SPL, respectively. These results demonstrate that a period of infrasonic exposure induced apoptosis and upregulated [Ca²⁺]i levels in hippocampal neurons, suggesting that infrasound may cause damage to the central nervous system (CNS) through the Ca²⁺‑mediated apoptotic pathway in hippocampal neurons.

Expanding the Action of Duplex RNAs into the Nucleus: Redirecting Alternative Splicing

Nucleic Acids Research. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21948593

Double-stranded RNAs are powerful agents for silencing gene expression in the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. The potential for duplex RNAs to control expression in the nucleus has received less attention. Here, we investigate the ability of small RNAs to redirect splicing. We identify RNAs targeting an aberrant splice site that restore splicing and production of functional protein. RNAs can target sequences within exons or introns and affect the inclusion of exons within SMN2 and dystrophin, genes responsible for spinal muscular atrophy and Duchenne muscular dystrophy, respectively. Duplex RNAs recruit argonaute 2 (AGO2) to pre-mRNA transcripts and altered splicing requires AGO2 expression. AGO2 promotes transcript cleavage in the cytoplasm, but recruitment of AGO2 to pre-mRNAs does not reduce transcript levels, exposing a difference between cytoplasmic and nuclear pathways. Involvement of AGO2 in splicing, a classical nuclear process, reinforces the conclusion from studies of RNA-mediated transcriptional silencing that RNAi pathways can be adapted to function in the mammalian nucleus. These data provide a new strategy for controlling splicing and expand the reach of small RNAs within the nucleus of mammalian cells.

Maternal Control of Seed Oil Content in Brassica Napus: the Role of Silique Wall Photosynthesis

The Plant Journal : for Cell and Molecular Biology. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21954986

Seed oil content is an important agronomic trait in rapeseed. However, our understanding of the regulatory processes controlling oil accumulation is still limited. Using two rapeseed lines (zy036 and 51070) with contrasting oil content, we found that maternal genotype greatly affects seed oil content. Genetic and physiological evidence indicated that difference in the local and tissue-specific photosynthetic activity in the silique wall (a maternal tissue) was responsible for the different seed oil contents. This effect was mimicked by in planta manipulation of silique wall photosynthesis. Furthermore, the starch content and expression of the important lipid synthesis regulatory gene WRINKLED1 in developing seeds were linked with silique wall photosynthetic activity. 454 pyrosequencing was performed to explore the possible molecular mechanism for the difference in silique wall photosynthesis between zy036 and 51070. Interestingly, the results suggested that photosynthesis-related genes were over-represented in both total silique wall expressed genes and genes that were differentially expressed between genotypes. A potential regulatory mechanism for elevated photosynthesis in the zy036 silique wall is proposed on the basis of knowledge from Arabidopsis. Differentially expressed ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (Rubisco)-related genes were used for further investigations. Oil content correlated closely with BnRBCS1A expression levels and Rubisco activities in the silique wall, but not in the leaf. Taken together, our results highlight an important role of silique wall photosynthesis in the regulation of seed oil content in terms of maternal effects.

In Vivo Toxicological Evaluation of Anisomycin

Toxicology Letters. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22004851

Anisomycin is a pyrrolidine antibiotic isolated from Streptomyces griseolus. Recent studies have shown that Anisomycin as a novel immunosuppressive agent is superior to Cyclosporine A (J. Immunother. 31, 858-870, 2008). In order to make toxicological evaluation of Anisomycin, acute and four-week continuously intravenous toxicity studies were performed in mice. IC(50) value tested on peripheral lymphocytes was 25.44 ng/ml. The calculated LD(50) for Anisomycin was 119.64 mg/kg. The mice were intravenously injected through mouse tail vein with a total dose of 5, 15, 30 and 60 mg/kg/mice of Anisomycin every other day for 4 weeks. Just in the high-dose mice, death of three mice happened and body weight of the mice was significantly decreased. Statistically significant changes in organ index included increases in ratios of the spleen, liver, lung and brain to the body weight, and decrease in ratio of the thymus to the body weight. Changes in clinical biochemistry parameters included increases in the aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) activities, and decreases in the glucose (GLU) activity. The distinct inflammation appeared in the lung, liver and kidney, and the number and size of megakaryocytes in the spleen were significantly increased. Anisomycin did not induce formation of the peripheral blood micronucleus, but increased the number of micronucleated polychromatic erythrocytes in bone marrow and sperm aberrations. However, the above aberrant changes occurred only in the mice treated with the high-dose Anisomycin. These results indicate that although Anisomycin has no significant side effects at effectively therapeutic doses, its over-dosage may lead to toxicity, particularly pulmo-, nephro- and hepato-toxicity.

Mutation P.Leu354Pro in EDA Causes Severe Hypohidrotic Ectodermal Dysplasia in a Chinese Family

Gene. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22008666

X-linked recessive hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia (XLHED) is characterized by the defective morphogenesis of teeth, hair, and eccrine sweat glands. It is associated with mutations in the EDA gene. Up to now, more than 100 mutations in the EDA gene have been reported to cause XLHED. The product of EDA gene is a trimeric type II transmembrane protein that belongs to the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) family of ligands. In this study, we identified a Chinese family with XLHED. Direct DNA sequencing of the whole coding region of EDA revealed a novel missense mutation, p.Leu354Pro in a patient affected with XLHED. This mutation was not found in either unaffected male individuals of the family or 168 normal controls. The substitution of Leu354 with Pro was found to be located in the TNF-like domain of EDA and may influence the epithelial signaling pathway required for the normal ectodermal development through altering the topology of EDA. Our finding broadens the spectrum of EDA mutations and may help to understand the molecular basis of XLHED and aid genetic counseling.

Nondestructive Evaluation of Tissue Engineered Articular Cartilage Using Time-Resolved Fluorescence Spectroscopy and Ultrasound Backscatter Microscopy

Tissue Engineering. Part C, Methods. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22010819

The goal of this study is to evaluate the ability of a bimodal technique integrating time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy (TRFS) and ultrasound backscatter microscopy (UBM) for nondestructive detection of changes in the biochemical, structural, and mechanical properties of self-assembled engineered articular cartilage constructs. The cartilage constructs were treated with three chemical agents (collagenase, chondroitinase-ABC, and ribose) to induce changes in biochemical content (collagen and glycosaminoglycan [GAG]) of matured constructs (4 weeks); and to subsequently alter the mechanical properties of the construct. The biochemical changes were evaluated using TRFS. The microstructure and the thickness of the engineered cartilage samples were characterized by UBM. The optical and ultrasound results were validated against those acquired via conventional techniques including collagen and GAG quantification and measurement of construct stiffness. Current results demonstrated that a set of optical parameters (e.g., average fluorescence lifetime and decay constants) showed significant correlation (p<0.05) with biochemical and mechanical data. The high-resolution ultrasound images provided complementary cross-section information of the cartilage samples morphology. Therefore, the technique was capable of nondestructively evaluating the composition of extracellular matrix and the microstructure of engineered tissue, demonstrating great potential as an alternative to traditional destructive assays.

Epidemiological Characteristics of Adult SCIWORA in Tianjin, China: a Preliminary Study

European Spine Journal : Official Publication of the European Spine Society, the European Spinal Deformity Society, and the European Section of the Cervical Spine Research Society. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22037845

The epidemiology of spinal cord injury without radiographic abnormality (SCIWORA) is less frequently reported in adults as compared with children. The annual incidence of SCIWORA was approximately 5.74% per million in Tianjin from 2004 to 2008. Importantly, the epidemiological characteristics of adult SCIWORA may be different from that in children. The aim of this study was to evaluate the radiological-clinical data of patients with adult SCIWORA, and to relatively analyze the epidemiological features.

Two-photon Excited Fluorescence Lifetime Measurements Through a Double-clad Photonic Crystal Fiber for Tissue Micro-endoscopy

Journal of Biophotonics. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22045513

This paper presents an endoscopic configuration for measurements of tissue autofluorescence using two-photon excitation and time-correlated single photon counting detection through a double-clad photonic crystal fiber (DC-PCF) without pre-chirping of laser pulses. The instrument performance was evaluated by measurements of fluorescent standard dyes, biological fluorophores (collagen and elastin), and tissue specimens (muscle, cartilage, tendon). Current results demonstrate the ability of this system to accurately retrieve the fluorescence decay profile and lifetime of these samples. This simple setup, which offers larger penetration depth than one-photon-based techniques, may be combined with morphology-yielding techniques such as photoacoustic and ultrasound imaging.

Receptor Activator for Nuclear Factor κ B Expression Predicts Poor Prognosis in Breast Cancer Patients with Bone Metastasis but Not in Patients with Visceral Metastasis

Journal of Clinical Pathology. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22049226

It was recently reported that receptor activator for nuclear factor κ B ligand (RANKL)/receptor activator for nuclear factor κ B (RANK) pathway is critical for RANK-expressing cancer cells to home to bone and associates with disease progression of cancer. The present study was aimed to evaluate the effect of RANK on prognosis in breast cancer patients with bone metastasis and patients with visceral metastasis.

Guided Migration of Neural Stem Cells Derived from Human Embryonic Stem Cells by an Electric Field

Stem Cells (Dayton, Ohio). Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22076946

Small direct current (DC) electric fields (EFs) guide neurite growth and migration of rodent neural stem cells (NSCs). However, this could be species dependent. Therefore, it is critical to investigate how human NSCs (hNSCs) respond to EF before any possible clinical attempt. Aiming to characterize the EF-stimulated and guided migration of hNSCs, we derived hNSCs from a well-established human embryonic stem cell line H9. Small applied DC EFs, as low as 16 mV/mm, induced significant directional migration toward the cathode. Reversal of the field polarity reversed migration of hNSCs. The galvanotactic/electrotactic response was both time and voltage dependent. The migration directedness and distance to the cathode increased with the increase of field strength. (Rho-kinase) inhibitor Y27632 is used to enhance viability of stem cells and has previously been reported to inhibit EF-guided directional migration in induced pluripotent stem cells and neurons. However, its presence did not significantly affect the directionality of hNSC migration in an EF. Cytokine receptor [C-X-C chemokine receptor type 4 (CXCR4)] is important for chemotaxis of NSCs in the brain. The blockage of CXCR4 did not affect the electrotaxis of hNSCs. We conclude that hNSCs respond to a small EF by directional migration. Applied EFs could potentially be further exploited to guide hNSCs to injured sites in the central nervous system to improve the outcome of various diseases. STEM CELLS 2012; 30:349-355.

Mequindox Induced Cellular DNA Damage Via Generation of Reactive Oxygen Species

Mutation Research. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22094289

Mequindox, a quinoxaline-N-dioxide derivative that possesses antibacterial properties, has been widely used as a feed additive in the stockbreeding industry in China. While recent pharmacological studies have uncovered potential hazardous effects of mequindox, exactly how mequindox induces pathological changes and the cellular responses associated with its consumption remain largely unexplored. In this study, we investigated the cellular responses associated with mequindox treatment. We report here that mequindox inhibits cell proliferation by arresting cells at the G2/M phase of the cell cycle. Interestingly, this mequindox-associated deleterious effect on cell proliferation was observed in human, pig as well as chicken cells, suggesting that mequindox acts on evolutionarily conserved target(s). To further understand the mequindox-host interaction and the mechanism underlying mequindox-induced cell cycle arrest, we measured the cellular content of DNA damage, which is known to perturb cell proliferation and compromise cell survival. Accordingly, using γ-H2AX as a surrogate marker for DNA damage, we found that mequindox treatment induced cellular DNA damage, which paralleled the chemical-induced elevation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels. Importantly, expression of the antioxidant enzyme catalase partially alleviated these mequindox-associated effects. Taken together, our results suggest that mequindox cytotoxicity is attributable, in part, to its role as a potent inducer of DNA damage via ROS.

Proteasome Inhibitor Bortezomib (PS-341) Enhances RANKL-induced MDA-MB-231 Breast Cancer Cell Migration

Molecular Medicine Reports. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22101248

The receptor activator of nuclear factor κB ligand/receptor activator of nuclear factor κB (RANKL/RANK) pathway is crucial for the migration of RANK-expressing cancer cells. The ubiquitin-proteasome protein degradation pathway plays a significant role in tumor metastasis. However, the relationship between these two pathways in tumor cell migration is unclear. In the present study, we explored the effect of the proteasome inhibitor bortezomib (PS-341) on RANKL-induced MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell migration. Transwell migration assay showed that RANKL-induced MDA-MB-231 cell migration was significantly blocked by the decoy receptor osteoprotegerin (OPG), and was also inhibited by the PI3-K inhibitor LY294002. Western blotting results showed that Akt was rapidly activated by soluble RANKL treatment. PS-341 significantly enhanced RANKL-induced MDA-MB-231 cell migration. Further study showed that the enhancement of migration by PS-341 involved upregulation of activated Akt and RANK. Our results for the first time support the theory that PS-341 treatment may be unsuitable for RANK-positive breast cancer patients.

Genetic Analysis of Hantaviruses and Their Rodent Hosts in Central-south China

Virus Research. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22108583

Hantaan virus (HTNV) and Seoul virus (SEOV) are two major zoonotic pathogens of hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) in Asia. Hubei province, which is located in the central-south China, had been one of the most severe epidemic areas of HFRS. To investigate phylogenetic relationships, genetic diversity and geographic distribution of HTNV and SEOV in their reservoir hosts, a total of 687 rodents were trapped in this area between 2000 and 2009. Sequences of partial S- and M-segments of hantaviruses and mitochondrial D-loop gene from 30 positive samples were determined. Our data indicated that SEOV and HTNV were co-circulating in Hubei. Phylogenetic analysis based on partial S- and M-segment sequences revealed two and three previously undefined lineages of SEOV, and a novel genetic lineage of HTNV, respectively. Four inter-lineage reassortment SEOVs carried by Rattus norvegicus and Apodemus agrarius were observed. It suggests that SEOV may cause spillover infections to A. agrarius naturally. The abundance of the phylogenetic lineages of SEOV suggested that central-south China was a radiation center for SEOVs.

Phytochrome B Control of Total Leaf Area and Stomatal Density Affects Drought Tolerance in Rice

Plant Molecular Biology. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22138855

We report that phytochrome B (phyB) mutants exhibit improved drought tolerance compared to wild type (WT) rice (Oryza sativa L. cv. Nipponbare). To understand the underlying mechanism by which phyB regulates drought tolerance, we analyzed root growth and water loss from the leaves of phyB mutants. The root system showed no significant difference between the phyB mutants and WT, suggesting that improved drought tolerance has little relation to root growth. However, phyB mutants exhibited reduced total leaf area per plant, which was probably due to a reduction in the total number of cells per leaf caused by enhanced expression of Orysa;KRP1 and Orysa;KRP4 (encoding inhibitors of cyclin-dependent kinase complex activity) in the phyB mutants. In addition, the developed leaves of phyB mutants displayed larger epidermal cells than WT leaves, resulting in reduced stomatal density. phyB deficiency promoted the expression of both putative ERECTA family genes and EXPANSIN family genes involved in cell expansion in leaves, thus causing greater epidermal cell expansion in the phyB mutants. Reduced stomatal density resulted in reduced transpiration per unit leaf area in the phyB mutants. Considering all these findings, we propose that phyB deficiency causes both reduced total leaf area and reduced transpiration per unit leaf area, which explains the reduced water loss and improved drought tolerance of phyB mutants.

Transmyocardial Drilling Revascularization Combined with Heparinized BFGF-incorporating Stent Activates Resident Cardiac Stem Cells Via SDF-1/CXCR4 Axis

Experimental Cell Research. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22146760

To investigate whether transmyocardial drilling revascularization combined with heparinized basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF)-incorporating degradable stent implantation (TMDRSI) can promote myocardial regeneration after acute myocardial infarction (AMI).

β-Elemene Induces Apoptosis As Well As Protective Autophagy in Human Non-small-cell Lung Cancer A549 Cells

The Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22150682

β-Elemene, a novel traditional Chinese medicine, has been shown to be effective against a wide range of tumours. In this study, the antitumour effect of β-elemene on human non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) A549 cells and the mechanism involved have been investigated.

A New Approach for the Determination of Oligosaccharide Structures

Carbohydrate Research. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22153709

A new method for the determination of oligosaccharide chains, known as the D60 one-dimensional TOCSY method is introduced in this paper. The results show that the use of this method enables a more effective coherent long-range magnetic relay transfer compared with that of existing DIPSI-2 and MMDY methods. Further, the method is easy to use and is not sensitive to the error of the pulse width. Without complex z-filtering steps, the high-quality sub-spectrum of pure absorption can be quickly obtained, which facilitates sub-spectroscopy detection for the existence of weak spin-coupling sugar components in the saccharide ring. Glycosides are taken as examples to discuss the characteristics of this method and its application in the determination of oligosaccharides in spectrum peak height.

Cloning and Characterization of the Polyether Salinomycin Biosynthesis Gene Cluster of Streptomyces Albus XM211

Applied and Environmental Microbiology. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22156425

Salinomycin is widely used in animal husbandry as a food additive due to its antibacterial and anticoccidial activities. However, its biosynthesis had only been studied by feeding experiments with isotope-labeled precursors. A strategy with degenerate primers based on the polyether-specific epoxidase sequences was successfully developed to clone the salinomycin gene cluster. Using this strategy, a putative epoxidase gene, slnC, was cloned from the salinomycin producer Streptomyces albus XM211. The targeted replacement of slnC and subsequent trans-complementation proved its involvement in salinomycin biosynthesis. A 127-kb DNA region containing slnC was sequenced, including genes for polyketide assembly and release, oxidative cyclization, modification, export, and regulation. In order to gain insight into the salinomycin biosynthesis mechanism, 13 gene replacements and deletions were conducted. Including slnC, 7 genes were identified as essential for salinomycin biosynthesis and putatively responsible for polyketide chain release, oxidative cyclization, modification, and regulation. Moreover, 6 genes were found to be relevant to salinomycin biosynthesis and possibly involved in precursor supply, removal of aberrant extender units, and regulation. Sequence analysis and a series of gene replacements suggest a proposed pathway for the biosynthesis of salinomycin. The information presented here expands the understanding of polyether biosynthesis mechanisms and paves the way for targeted engineering of salinomycin activity and productivity.

Imaging Protein Synthesis in Cells and Tissues with an Alkyne Analog of Puromycin

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22160674

Synthesis of many proteins is tightly controlled at the level of translation, and plays an essential role in fundamental processes such as cell growth and proliferation, signaling, differentiation, or death. Methods that allow imaging and identification of nascent proteins are critical for dissecting regulation of translation, both spatially and temporally, particularly in whole organisms. We introduce a simple and robust chemical method to image and affinity-purify nascent proteins in cells and in animals, based on an alkyne analog of puromycin, O-propargyl-puromycin (OP-puro). OP-puro forms covalent conjugates with nascent polypeptide chains, which are rapidly turned over by the proteasome and can be visualized or captured by copper(I)-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition. Unlike methionine analogs, OP-puro does not require methionine-free conditions and, uniquely, can be used to label and assay nascent proteins in whole organisms. This strategy should have broad applicability for imaging protein synthesis and for identifying proteins synthesized under various physiological and pathological conditions in vivo.

Site-specific Ubiquitination is Required for Relieving the Transcription Factor Miz1-mediated Suppression on TNF-α-induced JNK Activation and Inflammation

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22184250

The transcription factor zinc-finger protein Miz1 represses TNF-α-induced JNK activation and the repression is relieved upon TNF-α stimulation. However, the underlying mechanism is incompletely understood. Here we report that Miz1 interferes with the ubiquitin conjugating enzyme (E2) Ubc13 for binding to the RING domain of TNF-receptor associated factor 2 (TRAF2), thereby inhibiting the ubiquitin ligase (E3) activity of TRAF2 and suppressing TNF-α-induced JNK activation. Upon TNF-α stimulation, Miz1 rapidly undergoes K48-linked polyubiquitination at Lys388 and Lys472 residues and subsequent proteasomal degradation in a TRAF2-dependent manner. Replacement of Lysine 388 and Lysine 472 by arginines generates a nondegradable Miz1 mutant, which significantly suppresses TNF-α-induced JNK1 activation and inflammation. Thus, our results reveal a molecular mechanism by which the repression of TNF-α-induced JNK activation by Miz1 is de-repressed by its own site-specific ubiquitination and degradation, which may account for the temporal control of TNF-α-JNK signaling.

Albumin and C-reactive Protein Levels Predict Short-term Mortality, Which May Not Be Associated with PEG

Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22196825

βPix Plays a Dual Role in Cerebral Vascular Stability and Angiogenesis, and Interacts with Integrin α(v)β(8)

Developmental Biology. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22206757

The growth of new blood vessels by angiogenesis and their stabilization by the recruitment of perivascular mural cells are thought to be two sequential, yet independent events. Here we identify molecular links between both processes through the βPix and integrin α(v)β(8) proteins. Bubblehead (bbh) mutants with a genetic mutation in βPix show defective vascular stabilization. βPix is a guanine nucleotide exchange factor and scaffold protein that binds many proteins including Git1, which bridges βPix to integrins at focal adhesions. Here we show that the ability of βPix to stabilize vessels requires Git1 binding residues. Knockdown of Git1 leads to a hemorrhage phenotype similar to loss of integrin α(v), integrin β(8) or βPix, suggesting that vascular stabilization through βPix involves interactions with integrins. Furthermore, double loss of function of βPix and integrin α(v) shows enhanced hemorrhage rates. Not only is vascular stability impaired in these embryos, but we also uncover a novel role of both βPix and integrin α(v)β(8) in cerebral angiogenesis. Downregulation of either βPix or integrin α(v)β(8) results in fewer and morphologically abnormal cerebral arteries penetrating the hindbrain. We show that this is coupled with a significant reduction in endothelial cell proliferation in bbh mutants or integrin α(v)β(8) morphants. These data suggest that a complex involving βPix, GIT1 and integrin α(v)β(8) may regulate vascular stability, cerebral angiogenesis and endothelial cell proliferation in the developing embryo.

Alternative Splicing of Apoptosis-related Genes in Imatinib-treated K562 Cells Identified by Exon Array Analysis

International Journal of Molecular Medicine. Apr, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22211240

Imatinib is the therapeutic standard for newly diagnosed patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). In these patients, imatinib has been shown to induce an apoptotic response specifically in cells expressing the oncogenic fusion protein BCR-ABL. Previous studies in our lab revealed that imatinib-induced apoptosis in K562 cells involves a shift in production of Bcl-x splice isoforms towards the pro-apoptotic Bcl-xs splice variant. Here, we report the findings from our subsequent study to identify other apoptosis-related genes that are differentially spliced in response to imatinib treatment. Gene expression profiling of imatinib-treated K562 cells was performed by the Affymetrix GeneChip® Human Exon 1.0 ST array, and differences in exon-level expression and alternative splicing were analyzed using the easyExon software. Detailed analysis by reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) and sequencing of key genes confirmed the experimental results of the exon array. Our results suggest that imatinib treatment of K562 cells causes a transcriptional shift towards alternative splicing in a large number of apoptotic genes. The present study provides insight into the molecular character of apoptotic leukemia cells and may help to improve the mechanism of imatinib therapy in patients with CML.

Molecular Characterization and Immunolocalization of a Protein Disulfide Isomerase from Angiostrongylus Cantonensis

Parasitology Research. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22218922

Protein disulfide isomerases (PDIs), belonging to the thioredoxin superfamily, are oxidoreductases that catalyze the formation, reduction, and isomerization of disulfide bonds among cysteine residues of proteins. In this study, we report the cloning and characterization of a cDNA encoding a protein disulfide isomerase (AcPDI) from a cDNA library of fourth-stage larvae of Angiostrongylus cantonensis. The deduced amino acid sequence contains two thioredoxin domains and exhibits high identity to the homologues from other species. Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) was performed at the third-stage larvae, fourth-stage larvae, and adult stage of A. cantonensis, and the results revealed that the AcPDI mRNA, while expressed at all three stages, is expressed at a significantly higher level in female adult worms. Results of immunohistochemical studies indicated that the AcPDI expression was specifically localized in the tegument and uterus wall of female adult worms. Biochemical analysis showed that recombinant AcPDI was biologically active in vitro and exhibited the typical biochemical functions of PDIs: oxidase/isomerase and reductase activities. Collectively, these results implied that AcPDI may be a female-enriched protein and associated with the reproductive development of A. cantonensis. In addition, considering its biochemical properties, AcPDI may be involved in the formation of the cuticle of A. cantonensis.

A Naphthalimide-based Glyoxal Hydrazone for Selective Fluorescence Turn-on Sensing of Cys and Hcy

Organic Letters. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22220759

A fluorescent turn-on probe for Cys/Hcy based on inhibiting the C═N isomerization quenching process by an intramolecular hydrogen bond was reported. The probe exhibited higher selectivity toward Cys/Hcy over other amino acids as well as thiol-containing compounds.

Urinary Metabonomics Study on Biochemical Changes in an Experimental Model of Chronic Renal Failure by Adenine Based on UPLC Q-TOF/MS

Clinica Chimica Acta; International Journal of Clinical Chemistry. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22227165

Chronic renal failure (CRF) is a serious clinical symptom, occurring as the end result of all kinds of chronic kidney disease and its pathophysiological mechanism is not yet well understood. We investigated the metabolic profiling of urine samples from CRF model rats to find potential disease biomarkers and research pathology of CRF.

ERK and P38 MAPK Signaling Pathways Are Involved in Ochratoxin A-induced G2 Phase Arrest in Human Gastric Epithelium Cells

Toxicology Letters. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22230261

Ochratoxin A (OTA) is a ubiquitous mycotoxin with potential nephrotoxic, hepatotoxic, and immunotoxic effects. Recent work from our laboratory found that OTA evoked G2 phase arrest in GES-1 cells in vitro by modulating the key factors Cdc25C, Cdc2 and cyclinB1, which were critical to the G2/M phase transmission, suggested that OTA-induced G2 arrest mediate at least in part OTA toxicity effect. However, the molecular mechanism of this effect is currently unclear. In the present study, we showed that treatment of GES-1 cells with OTA could induce the activation of MAPK family members ERK and p38. ERK inhibitor PD98059 and p38 inhibitor SB203580 significantly reversed the depression of Cdc25C/p-Cdc25C, Cdc2/p-Cdc2, cyclinB1 as well as the cyclinB1-Cdc2 complex, thereby, abolished the delay in G2 phase. In addition, silencing ERK and p38 expression with siRNA significantly inhibited OTA-induced G2 arrest in GES-1 cells as well. Collectively, these data suggest that the ERK and p38 MAPK signaling pathways play important roles in the regulation of OTA-induced G2 arrest in GES-1 cells.

Natural Products As Kinase Inhibitors

Natural Product Reports. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22231144

Covering: up to 2011Natural products have been widely used to dissect the basic mechanisms of fundamental life science and as clinical therapeutics. Recently, there has been significant interest in discovering new chemical pharmacophores in natural products to fulfil the vast demand for novel kinase inhibitors and address critical unmet medical needs with respect to signal transduction pathways. In this review, we summarize the history of several different classes of natural product-derived kinase inhibitors, discuss their kinome-wide target profiles and examine their structural binding modes based on available 3D X-ray structures. In particular, their origin, target activity, selectivity, scope and potential therapeutic development are highlighted against the backdrop of medicinal chemistry.

Impact of Diabetes, High Triglycerides and Low HDL Cholesterol on Risk for Ischemic Cardiovascular Disease Varies by LDL Cholesterol Level: A 15-year Follow-up of the Chinese Multi-provincial Cohort Study

Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22244364

AIMS: A large proportion of ischemic cardiovascular disease occur in people without hypercholesterolemia. We aimed to investigate whether risk factors other than low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) have different impacts on cardiovascular risk in people with low verses high LDL-C levels. METHODS: A total of 30,378 participants (35-64 years) were followed for 15 years in the Chinese Multi-provincial Cohort Study. Associations of coronary heart disease (CHD) and ischemic stroke with risk factors other than LDL-C were assessed in participants with low (<130mg/dL) and high (≥130mg/dL) LDL-C levels. RESULTS: During the follow-up, 65.5% of CHD and 70.2% of ischemic stroke events occurred in participants with low LDL-C. High triglycerides predicted CHD (HR=1.74, 95% CI 1.25-2.42, P=0.001), and low HDL-C predicted ischemic stroke (HR=1.54, 95% CI 1.18-2.03, P=0.002) only in participants with low LDL-C. Diabetes predicted CHD in participants with high LDL-C (HR=2.38, 95% CI 1.31-4.34, P=0.005), but not in those with low LDL-C. Older age, male, hypertension, central obesity, and smoking had similar effects on the risk in both groups. CONCLUSIONS: Triglycerides and low HDL-C should be addressed in the management of dyslipidemia in people with low LDL-C. When LDL-C is high, tighter management of glycemia and LDL-C is warranted.

Induction of Activation of the Antioxidant Response Element and Stabilization of Nrf2 by 3-(3-pyridylmethylidene)-2-indolinone (PMID) Confers Protection Against Oxidative Stress-induced Cell Death

Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22245129

The antioxidant response elements (ARE) are a cis-acting enhancer sequence located in regulatory regions of antioxidant and detoxifying genes. Nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (Nrf2) is a member of the Cap 'n' Collar family of transcription factors that binds to the ARE and regulates the transcription of specific ARE-containing genes. Under oxidative stress, Nrf2/ARE induction is fundamental to defense against reactive oxygen species (ROS) and serves as a key factor in the protection against toxic xenobiotics. 3-(3-Pyridylmethylidene)-2-Indolinone (PMID) is a derivative of 2-indolinone compounds which act as protein kinase inhibitors and show anti-tumor activity. However, the role of PMID in the oxidative stress remains unknown. In the present study, we showed that PMID induced the activation of ARE-mediated transcription, increased the DNA-binding activity of Nrf2 and then up-regulated the expression of antioxidant genes such as HO-1, SOD, and NQO1. The level of Nrf2 protein was increased in cells treated with PMID by a post-transcriptional mechanism. Under CHX treatment, the stability of Nrf2 protein was enhanced by PMID with decreased turnover rate. We showed that PMID reduced the ubiquitination of Nrf2 and disrupted the Cullin3 (Cul3)-Keap1 interaction. Furthermore, cells treated with PMID showed resistance to cytotoxicity by H(2)O(2) and pro-oxidant 6-OHDA. PMID also up-regulated the antioxidant level in BALB/c mice. Taken together, the compound PMID induces the ARE-mediated gene expression through stabilization of Nrf2 protein and activation of Nrf2/ARE pathway and protects against oxidative stress-mediated cell death.

Rapid, Sensitive, and Multiplexed On-chip Optical Sensors for Micro-gas Chromatography

Lab on a Chip. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22245960

We developed and characterized a rapid, sensitive and integrated optical vapor sensor array for micro-gas chromatography (μGC) applications. The sensor is based on the Fabry-Pérot (FP) interferometer formed by a micrometre-thin vapor-sensitive polymer layer coated on a silicon wafer. The thickness and the refractive index of the polymer vary in response to the vapor analyte, resulting in a change in the reflected intensity of the laser impinged on the sensor. In our study, four different polymers were coated on four wells pre-etched on a silicon wafer to form a spatially separated sensor array. A CMOS imager was employed to simultaneously monitor the polymers' response, thus enabling multiplexed detection of a vapor analyte passing through the GC column. A sub-second detection time was demonstrated. In addition, a sub-picogram detection limit was achieved, representing orders of magnitude improvement over the on-chip vapor sensors previously reported.

Thromboembolic Events During the Perioperative Period in Patients Undergoing Permanent Pacemaker Implantation

Clinical Cardiology. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22262234

Thromboembolism (TE) is one of the most serious complications after pacemaker implantation. It has been demonstrated that several patient characteristics and different pacing modes are related to an increased risk of TE events during long-term follow-up.

Myocardial Perfusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging Using Sliding-Window Conjugate-Gradient Highly Constrained Back-Projection Reconstruction for Detection of Coronary Artery Disease

The American Journal of Cardiology. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22264595

Myocardial perfusion magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with sliding-window conjugate-gradient highly constrained back-projection reconstruction (SW-CG-HYPR) allows whole left ventricular coverage, improved temporal and spatial resolution and signal/noise ratio, and reduced cardiac motion-related image artifacts. The accuracy of this technique for detecting coronary artery disease (CAD) has not been determined in a large number of patients. We prospectively evaluated the diagnostic performance of myocardial perfusion MRI with SW-CG-HYPR in patients with suspected CAD. A total of 50 consecutive patients who were scheduled for coronary angiography with suspected CAD underwent myocardial perfusion MRI with SW-CG-HYPR at 3.0 T. The perfusion defects were interpreted qualitatively by 2 blinded observers and were correlated with x-ray angiographic stenoses ≥50%. The prevalence of CAD was 56%. In the per-patient analysis, the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy of SW-CG-HYPR was 96% (95% confidence interval 82% to 100%), 82% (95% confidence interval 60% to 95%), 87% (95% confidence interval 70% to 96%), 95% (95% confidence interval 74% to100%), and 90% (95% confidence interval 82% to 98%), respectively. In the per-vessel analysis, the corresponding values were 98% (95% confidence interval 91% to 100%), 89% (95% confidence interval 80% to 94%), 86% (95% confidence interval 76% to 93%), 99% (95% confidence interval 93% to 100%), and 93% (95% confidence interval 89% to 97%), respectively. In conclusion, myocardial perfusion MRI using SW-CG-HYPR allows whole left ventricular coverage and high resolution and has high diagnostic accuracy in patients with suspected CAD.

Sex Differences in Anterior Cingulate Cortex Activation During Impulse Inhibition and Behavioral Correlates

Psychiatry Research. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22285718

Poor impulse inhibition is associated with behavioral problems including aggression and violence as well as clinical diagnoses such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and substance abuse, all of which are more prevalent in men than in women. Studies have found that fronto-parietal and fronto-striatal-thalamic networks are critical for successful impulse inhibition. However, few studies have investigated neural differences in these networks between men and women. In this study, we use a well established behavioral task, the parametric Go/noGo task, to explore the relationships between brain regional activity during impulse control and impulsivity trait measures, as well as sex differences in these relationships. We found that males showed heightened activation of the rostral anterior cingulate, which correlated with ratings related to impulsivity. We also found that the activation/deactivation in males and females correlates with personality ratings in a sex-specific manner.

A Novel Method for Fast and Robust Estimation of Fluorescence Decay Dynamics Using Constrained Least-squares Deconvolution with Laguerre Expansion

Physics in Medicine and Biology. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22290334

We report a novel method for estimating fluorescence impulse response function (fIRF) from noise-corrupted time-domain fluorescence measurements of biological tissue. This method is based on the use of high-order Laguerre basis functions and a constrained least-squares approach that addresses the problem of overfitting due to increased model complexity. The new method was extensively evaluated on fluorescence data from simulation, fluorescent standard dyes, ex vivo tissue samples of atherosclerotic plaques and in vivo oral carcinoma. Current results demonstrate that this method allows for rapid and accurate deconvolution of multiple channel fluorescence decays without adaptively adjusting the Laguerre scale parameter. The appropriate choice of the scale parameter is essential for accurate estimation of the fIRF. The method described here is anticipated to play an important role in the development of computational techniques for real-time analysis of time-resolved fluorescence data from biological tissues and to support the advancement of fluorescence lifetime instrumentation for biomedical diagnostics by providing a means for on-line robust analysis of fluorescence decay.

Risk Factors for Autistic Regression: Results of an Ambispective Cohort Study

Journal of Child Neurology. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22290858

A subgroup of children diagnosed with autism experience developmental regression featured by a loss of previously acquired abilities. The pathogeny of autistic regression is unknown, although many risk factors likely exist. To better characterize autistic regression and investigate the association between autistic regression and potential influencing factors in Chinese autistic children, we conducted an ambispective study with a cohort of 170 autistic subjects. Analyses by multiple logistic regression showed significant correlations between autistic regression and febrile seizures (OR = 3.53, 95% CI = 1.17-10.65, P = .025), as well as with a family history of neuropsychiatric disorders (OR = 3.62, 95% CI = 1.35-9.71, P = .011). This study suggests that febrile seizures and family history of neuropsychiatric disorders are correlated with autistic regression.

The Magnetic Assembly of Polymer Colloids in a Ferrofluid and Its Display Applications

Nanoscale. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22297654

Nonmagnetic polymer colloids have been assembled into colloidal photonic crystals in a ferrofluid by applying an external magnetic field based on the dipole-dipole interactions of "magnetic holes". The photonic crystal disassembles immediately when the magnetic field is removed. The mechanism of assembly can be explained by two simultaneous processes: phase separation and colloidal assembly. In this work, increasing the size of the building blocks still produces colorful photonic crystals due to their 2nd order diffraction. With a larger building block, the magnetic response between the polymer colloids is greatly enhanced so that an instant and reversible assembly/disassembly can be realized in a much weaker magnetic field and lower ferrofluid concentration. Based on these investigations, a magnetically controlled photonic display unit has been fabricated, which works in a weak magnetic field, has stable reflection signals and possesses fast and reversible on/off switching of reflections.

Cytotoxic Angucycline Class Glycosides from the Deep Sea Actinomycete Streptomyces Lusitanus SCSIO LR32

Journal of Natural Products. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22304344

Five new C-glycoside angucyclines, named grincamycins B-F (1-5), and a known angucycline antibiotic, grincamycin (6), were isolated from Streptomyces lusitanus SCSIO LR32, an actinomycete of deep sea origin. The structures of these compounds were elucidated on the basis of extensive spectroscopic analyses, including MS and 1D and 2D NMR experiments. All compounds except grincamycin F (5) exhibited in vitro cytotoxicities against the human cancer cell lines HepG2, SW-1990, HeLa, NCI-H460, and MCF-7 and the mouse melanoma cell line B16, with IC(50) values ranging from 1.1 to 31 μM.

"One-stop-shop" Cardiac MRI at 3.0T for the Detection of Coronary Artery Disease

International Journal of Cardiology. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22305773

Event-related Potentials Reveal Early Activation of Body Part Representations in Action Concept Comprehension

Neuroscience Letters. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22306088

With tasks involving action concept comprehension, many fMRI studies have reported brain activations in sensori-motor regions specific to effectors of the referent action. There is relatively less evidence whether such activations reflect early semantic access or late conceptual re-processing. Here we recorded event-related potentials when participants recognized noun-verb pairs. For Congruent pairs, the verb was the one most commonly associated with the noun (e.g., football-kick). Compared with a control condition, verbs in Congruent pairs showed priming effects in the time windows of 100-150ms and 210-260ms. Such activation seems to be specific to body part but not other aspects of the action as similar priming effect was also found when the noun and verb involved different actions though sharing the same body part (e.g., football-jump), documenting for the first time the early activation of body part representations in action concept comprehension.

Icariin Ameliorates Streptozotocin-induced Diabetic Retinopathy in Vitro and in Vivo

International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22312291

This study investigated the effect of Icariin (ICA) supplementation on diabetic retinopathy (DR) in a streptozotocin-induced diabetic rat model system. Fifty Sprague Dawley rats were randomly distributed into a control group and a streptozotocin-induced diabetes group. Diabetic rats were randomly divided into two groups; one group received ICA 5 mg/kg/day for 12 weeks by oral gavage; the other group received saline gavage as a placebo. Retinal morphological changes, endothelial markers (RECA), collagen IV (Col-IV), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and neuropathic changes (Thy-1 and Brn3a expression) of the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) were investigated. The effects of ICA at various concentrations (0, 10(1), 10(2), 10(3) nmol/mL) on neurite growth were investigated also in retinal ganglion cells (RGC) cultured from both diabetic and normal animals. Numerous pathological changes (deceased expression of RECA, VEGF, Thy-1, and Brn3a as well as decreased Collagen IV and Müller cell content) were noted in the retinal vessels of diabetic rats; these changes were attenuated in diabetic animals that received ICA. ICA enhanced neurite growth in RGC from both normal rats and diabetic rats in a dose dependent fashion. ICA may be useful in the treatment of diabetic retinopathy. Further investigations are indicated.

Primary Small Cell Carcinoma of the Lesser Omentum

The Kaohsiung Journal of Medical Sciences. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22313540

Although pulmonary small cell carcinoma (SCC) is seen frequently, SCC that originates from the extrapulmonary organs is extremely rare. We herein report a case of a SCC located in the lesser omentum. A 61-year-old male was admitted to our department due to intermittent epigastralgia for 2 months. Ultrasonography (US) revealed an irregular hypoechoic mass measuring about 58 mm × 50 mm × 45 mm under the left lobe of the liver. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed to verify the irregular mass with T1- and T2- weighted images between the left lobe of liver and the stomach. At laparotomy, the well-circumscribed neoplasm was found in the lesser omentum, and the fundus of the neoplasm was located in the root of left gastric artery. Intraoperative microscopic evaluation of frozen sections revealed malignancy of the lesser omentum. Resection of the neoplasm was performed, and the combined resection of the vagal nerve was also performed for the partial adhesion. Pyloroplasty was performed for avoiding delayed gastric emptying caused by combined resection of vagal nerve. The lymph nodes dissection at lesser curvature and right cardia was also performed with a negative result. Based on the histological findings, the final diagnosis of primary lesser omental SCC was confirmed. The pathologic staging showed locoregional disease.

The Increasing Prevalence of Serologic Markers for Syphilis Among Chinese Blood Donors in 2008 Through 2010 During a Syphilis Epidemic

Transfusion. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22321121

BACKGROUND: In China, the growing syphilis epidemic parallels the spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in the general population. This study evaluated the prevalence and incidence of serologic markers for syphilis among donors at five Chinese blood centers. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: We examined whole blood and apheresis donations collected from January 2008 through December 2010. Postdonation testing of syphilis was conducted using two different Treponema pallidum antibody enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kits. The prevalence of serologic markers for syphilis (%), and the rate of coinfection with HIV-1/2, hepatitis B virus (HBV), and hepatitis C virus (HCV) were calculated. A multivariable logistic regression analysis was conducted examining donor characteristics associated with positive syphilis serology. Seroconversion rate and syphilis incidence were estimated. RESULTS: Of 801,511 donations, 60% were from first-time donors and 40% were from repeat donors. There was a significant increase in syphilis serologic markers among first-time donors with 0.41, 0.45, and 0.57% positivity over 3 years (p < 0.001). Approximately 2.8, 0.8, and 0.5% of HIV-1/2-, HBV-, and HCV-positive donations also tested reactive for syphilis. Logistic regression results suggest that first-time donors were nine times more likely to be syphilis positive than repeat donors. Higher syphilis positivity was associated with donors older than 25 years and with less education. Estimated incidence among repeat donations was 33 (95% confidence interval, 29-39) per 100,000 person-years. CONCLUSION: The increase in syphilis serologic prevalence reflected the syphilis epidemic in the general population. Without screening, most of these syphilis-positive donations would get into the blood supply. Thus, during a syphilis epidemic, continued syphilis screening of blood donations may be important to maintain blood safety and public health.

Genotypic Variants at 2q33 and Risk of Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinoma in China: A Meta-analysis of Genome-wide Association Studies

Human Molecular Genetics. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22323360

Genome-wide association studies have identified susceptibility loci for esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. We conducted a meta-analysis of all single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that showed nominally significant p-values in two previously published genome-wide scans that included a total of 2961 esophageal squamous cell carcinoma cases and 3400 controls. The meta-analysis revealed five SNPs at 2q33 with P < 5 x 10(-8) and the strongest signal was rs13016963, with a combined odds ratio (95% confidence interval) of 1.29 (1.19-1.40) and P = 7.63 x 10(-10). An imputation analysis of 4304 SNPs at 2q33 suggested a single association signal and the strongest imputed SNP associations were similar to those from the genotyped SNPs. We conducted an ancestral recombination graph analysis with 53 SNPs to identify one or more haplotypes that harbor the variants directly responsible for the detected association signal. This showed that the five SNPs exist in a single haplotype along with 45 imputed SNPs in strong linkage disequilibrium and the strongest candidate was rs10201587, one of the genotyped SNPs. Our meta-analysis found genome-wide significant SNPs at 2q33 that map to the CASP8/ALS2CR12/TRAK2 gene region. Variants in CASP8 have been extensively studied across a spectrum of cancers with mixed results. The locus we identified appears to be distinct from the widely studied rs3834129 and rs1045485 SNPs in CASP8. Future studies of esophageal and other cancers should focus on comprehensive sequencing of this 2q33 locus and functional analysis of rs13016963 and rs10201587and other strongly correlated variants.

Production of the Monoclonal Antibody Against Sudan 2 for Immunoassay of Sudan Dyes in Egg

Analytical Biochemistry. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22327048

Many methods have been reported to determine the residues of Sudan dyes in food samples. Among the reported methods, enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was a usually used practical screen tool. In this study, a novel hapten of Sudan 2 was synthesized by coupling 4-amino-3-methylbenzoic acid to β-naphthol, and the monoclonal antibody against Sudan 2 was produced. The obtained antibody can recognize Sudan 1, 2, 3, 4, Sudan red G and Para red simultaneously. After evaluation of different coating antigens, a heterologous indirect competitive ELISA was then developed to determine the six Sudan dyes in egg. The crossreactivities for the six analytes were in a range of 63%-100% and the limits of detection were in a range of 0.2-0.5 ng/g depending on the compound. Intra- and inter-assay recoveries from the standards fortified blank egg were in a range of 71.7%-97.6% with coefficients of variation lower than 17.1%.

Phenolic Compounds and Antioxidant Activities of Liriope Muscari

Molecules (Basel, Switzerland). 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22328078

Five phenolic compounds, namely N-trans-coumaroyltyramine (1), N-trans-feruloyltyramine (2), N-trans-feruloyloctopamine (3), 5,7-dihydroxy-8-methoxyflavone (4) and (3S)3,5,4'-trihydroxy-7-methoxy-6-methylhomoisoflavanone (5), were isolated from the fibrous roots of Liriope muscari (Liliaceae). Compounds 2-5 were isolated for the first time from the Liriope genus. Their in vitro antioxidant activities were assessed by the DPPH and ABTS scavenging methods with microplate assays. The structure-activity relationships of compounds 1-3 are discussed.

Allele-selective Inhibition of Expression of Huntingtin and Ataxin-3 by RNA Duplexes Containing Unlocked Nucleic Acid Substitutions

Biochemistry. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24266403

Unlocked nucleic acid (UNA) is an acyclic analogue of RNA that can be introduced into RNA or DNA oligonucleotides. The increased flexibility conferred by the acyclic structure fundamentally affects the strength of base pairing, creating opportunities for improved applications and new insights into molecular recognition. Here we test how UNA substitutions affect allele-selective inhibition of expression of trinucleotide repeat genes Huntingtin (HTT) and Ataxin-3 (ATX-3). We find that the either the combination of mismatched bases and UNA substitutions or UNA substitutions alone can improve potency and selectivity. Inhibition is potent, and selectivities of >40-fold for inhibiting mutant versus wild-type expression can be achieved. Surprisingly, even though UNA preserves the potential for complete base pairing, the introduction of UNA substitutions at central positions within fully complementary duplexes leads to >19-fold selectivity. Like mismatched bases, the introduction of central UNA bases disrupts the potential for cleavage of substrate by argonaute 2 (AGO2) during gene silencing. UNA-substituted duplexes are as effective as other strategies for allele-selective silencing of trinucleotide repeat disease genes. Modulation of AGO2 activity by the introduction of UNA substitutions demonstrates that backbone flexibility is as important as base pairing for catalysis of fully complementary duplex substrates. UNA can be used to tailor RNA silencing for optimal properties and allele-selective action.

Efficacy of Structured Education in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Receiving Insulin Treatment

Journal of Diabetes. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24279284

The aim of the present study was to assess the efficacy of structured education in insulin-treated type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) patients.

[Inflammation Accelerates Lipid Dysregulation Mediated Cardiac Fibrosis Through Enhancing Myocardial Endothelial-to-mesenchymal Transition]

Zhonghua Xin Xue Guan Bing Za Zhi. Jul, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24284191

Dyslipidemia and chronic inflammation are risk factors of cardiac fibrosis. This study was aimed to investigate their possible synergetic effects and underlying mechanisms on progression of cardiac fibrosis in apolipoprotein E knockout (ApoE -/-) mice.

Primary Solitary Fibrous Tumors of Liver: a Case Report and Literature Review

Diagnostic Pathology. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24294990

A 42-year-old male presented right upper abdomen pain for more than 6 days, which misdiagnose calculus of intrahepatic duct and acute cholecystitis. An approximately 1.5 cm x 1.0 cm x 1.0 cm nodule was found and resected in left lateral lobe of hepatic. Pathological examination showed spindle cell and fibroblast -like cells within the collagenous stroma. Immunohistochemically, these spindle tumor cells showed diffuse Vim and Bcl-2 positive reactivity, but S-100 protein and HMB45 were negative. The post-operative course was uneventful. Solitary fibrous tumors of the liver, although rare, should be differentiated from mesenchymal lesions of the liver. Virtual slide: The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here:

Injectable 3-D Fabrication of Medical Electronics at the Target Biological Tissues

Scientific Reports. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24309385

Conventional transplantable biomedical devices generally request sophisticated surgery which however often causes big trauma and serious pain to the patients. Here, we show an alternative way of directly making three-dimensional (3-D) medical electronics inside the biological body through sequential injections of biocompatible packaging material and liquid metal ink. As the most typical electronics, a variety of medical electrodes with different embedded structures were demonstrated to be easily formed at the target tissues. Conceptual in vitro experiments provide strong evidences for the excellent performances of the injectable electrodes. Further in vivo animal experiments disclosed that the formed electrode could serve as both highly efficient ECG (Electrocardiograph) electrode and stimulator electrode. These findings clarified the unique features and practicability of the liquid metal based injectable 3-D fabrication of medical electronics. The present strategy opens the way for directly manufacturing electrophysiological sensors or therapeutic devices in situ via a truly minimally invasive approach.

[Advances in Collateral Damage of Laser Ablation of Dental Hard Tissues]

Zhonghua Kou Qiang Yi Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Kouqiang Yixue Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Stomatology. Sep, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24314290

[Effect of High Glucose Peritoneal Dialysis Solution on PGC-1α Expression and Mitochondria Related Oxidative Injury in Human Peritoneal Mesothelial Cells]

Zhong Nan Da Xue Xue Bao. Yi Xue Ban = Journal of Central South University. Medical Sciences. Nov, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24316930

To investigate the mechanism of mitochondrial oxidative injury induced by high glucose peritoneal dialysis solution (PDS) and the protective effect of peroxisome proliferator activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-alpha (PGC-1α) in the mitochondria of human peritoneal mesothelial cells (HPMC) in the high glucose ambience.

Behavior Change Interventions to Improve the Health of Racial and Ethnic Minority Populations: a Tool Kit of Adaptation Approaches

The Milbank Quarterly. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24320170

Adapting behavior change interventions to meet the needs of racial and ethnic minority populations has the potential to enhance their effectiveness in the target populations. But because there is little guidance on how best to undertake these adaptations, work in this field has proceeded without any firm foundations. In this article, we present our Tool Kit of Adaptation Approaches as a framework for policymakers, practitioners, and researchers interested in delivering behavior change interventions to ethnically diverse, underserved populations in the United Kingdom.

Immunological and Virological Benefits Resulted from Short-course Treatment During Primary HIV Infection: a Meta-analysis

PloS One. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24324793

To assess the potential immunological and virological effects that result from short-course antiretroviral treatment during primary HIV infection (PHI). And to investigate whether treatment initiation time, treatment duration and follow-up time after treatment interruption would affect these post-treatment immunovirological outcomes.

[Mutation Analysis of EXT Genes in Two Pedigrees with Hereditary Multiple Exostoses]

Zhonghua Yi Xue Yi Chuan Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Yixue Yichuanxue Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Medical Genetics. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24327137

To detect the underlying genetic defect in two Chinese families with hereditary multiple exostoses and provide genetic counseling.

Zinc Protects Human Kidney Cells from Depleted Uranium-induced Apoptosis

Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24330236

Depleted uranium (DU) is a weak radioactive heavy metal, and zinc (Zn) is an effective antidote to heavy metal poisoning. However, the effect of Zn on DU-induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis is not completely understood. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of Zn on DU-induced cell apoptosis in human kidney cells (HK-2) and explore its molecular mechanism. Pre-treatment with Zn significantly inhibited DU-induced apoptosis. It reduced the formation of reactive oxygen species in the cells, increased the catalase (CAT) and glutathione (GSH) concentrations, suppressed the DU-induced soluble Fas receptor (sFasR) and soluble Fas ligand (sFasL) overexpression, suppressed the release of cytochrome c and apoptosis inhibitor factor (AIF) from mitochondria to cytoplasm, inhibited the activation of caspase-9, caspase-8 and caspase-3, and induced metallothionein (MT) expression. Furthermore, exogenous MT effectively inhibited DU-induced cell apoptosis. In conclusion, mitochondrial and FasR-mediated apoptosis pathways contribute to DU-induced apoptosis in HK-2 cells. Through independent mechanisms, such as indirect antioxidant effects, inhibition of the activation of caspase-9, caspase-8 and caspase-3, and induction of MT expression, Zn inhibits DU-induced apoptosis.

[Lung Ultrasound for Diagnosis of Neonatal Atelectasis]

Zhonghua Er Ke Za Zhi. Chinese Journal of Pediatrics. Sep, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24330981

The diagnosis of neonatal atelectasis (NA) is usually based on clinical manifestations and chest X-rays, lung ultrasounds are not included in the diagnostic work-up of NA.Recently, ultrasounds have been used extensively and successfully in the diagnosis of many kinds of lung diseases, but few studies have addressed NA. The aim of this study was to evaluate the ultrasound imaging features of NA-and to evaluate the value of lung ultrasound in diagnosing NA.

Cbl-b Enhances Sensitivity to 5-fluorouracil Via EGFR- and Mitochondria-mediated Pathways in Gastric Cancer Cells

International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24351824

5-Fluorouracil (5-FU) is an essential component of anticancer chemotherapy against gastric cancer. However, the response rate of single drug is still limited. The ubiquitin ligase Cbl-b is a negative regulator of growth factor receptor signaling and is involved in the suppression of cancer cell proliferation. However, whether Cbl-b could affect 5-FU sensitivity remains unclear. The present study showed that Cbl-b knockdown caused higher proliferation concomitant with the decrease of apoptosis induced by 5-FU treatment in gastric cancer cell. Further mechanism investigation demonstrated that Cbl-b knockdown caused significant increase of phosphorylation of EGFR, ERK and Akt, decrease of mitochondrial membrane potential, and increase of expression ratio of Bcl-2/Bax. These results suggest that Cbl-b enhances sensitivity to 5-FU via EGFR- and mitochondria-mediated pathways in gastric cancer cells.

[The Method of Phytoplankton Photosynthesis Activity In-situ Measurement Based on Light Induced Fluorescence]

Guang Pu Xue Yu Guang Pu Fen Xi = Guang Pu. Sep, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24369649

According to the phytoplankton fluorescence induction characteristics under different light conditions, chlorophyll fluorescence as a probe for analysis of phytoplankton photosynthesis was studied. The present paper proposed a in-situ measurement method based on the chlorophyll fluorescence values Ft and Fm to get phytoplankton photosynthesis activity, Chlorella vulgaris, microcystis aeruginosa and Cyclotella meneghiniana Kiits were selected as experimental subjects, a comparison test was done between self-developed in-situ measurement system and Water PAM in lab, and the results showed that coefficients between the two methods were 0.9778, 0.8786 and 0.7953. This work provides a rapid and in-situ measurement method for phytoplankton photosynthesis activity.

Realization of Radial P-n Junction Silicon Nanowire Solar Cell Based on Low-temperature and Shallow Phosphorus Doping

Nanoscale Research Letters. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24369781

A radial p-n junction solar cell based on vertically free-standing silicon nanowire (SiNW) array is realized using a novel low-temperature and shallow phosphorus doping technique. The SiNW arrays with excellent light trapping property were fabricated by metal-assisted chemical etching technique. The shallow phosphorus doping process was carried out in a hot wire chemical vapor disposition chamber with a low substrate temperature of 250°C and H2-diluted PH3 as the doping gas. Auger electron spectroscopy and Hall effect measurements prove the formation of a shallow p-n junction with P atom surface concentration of above 1020 cm-3 and a junction depth of less than 10 nm. A short circuit current density of 37.13 mA/cm2 is achieved for the radial p-n junction SiNW solar cell, which is enhanced by 7.75% compared with the axial p-n junction SiNW solar cell. The quantum efficiency spectra show that radial transport based on the shallow phosphorus doping of SiNW array improves the carrier collection property and then enhances the blue wavelength region response. The novel shallow doping technique provides great potential in the fabrication of high-efficiency SiNW solar cells.

[Impact of Gender on Lipoprotein-associated Phospholipase A2 Activity and Association with Known Cardiovascularrisk Factors]

Zhonghua Xin Xue Guan Bing Za Zhi. Nov, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24370228

To explore the impact of gender on lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A(2) (Lp-PLA(2)) activity and association with known cardiovascular risk factors.

[Dynamic Monitoring of Occupational Hazards Exposure Level and Evaluation the Effects of Prevention Measures at a Sentinel Factory]

Zhonghua Lao Dong Wei Sheng Zhi Ye Bing Za Zhi = Zhonghua Laodong Weisheng Zhiyebing Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Diseases. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24370365

Validated LC-MS/MS Method for the Simultaneous Determination of Hyperoside and 2''-O-galloylhyperin in Rat Plasma: Application to a Pharmacokinetic Study in Rats

Biomedical Chromatography : BMC. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24375731

An LC-MS/MS method was developed for the first time to simultaneously determine hyperoside and 2''-O-galloylhyperin, two major components in Pyrola calliantha extract, in rat plasma. Following extraction by one-step protein precipitation with methanol, the analytes were separated on a Venusil MP-C18 column within 2 min, using methanol-water-formic acid (50:50:0.1, v/v/v) as the mobile phase at a flow rate of 0.4 mL/min. Detection was performed on electrospray negative ionization mass spectrometry by multiple-reaction monitoring of the transitions of 2''-O-galloylhyperin at m/z 615.1 → 301.0, of hyperoside at m/z 463.1 → 300.1, and of internal standard at m/z 415.1 → 295.1. The limits of quantification were 2 ng/mL for both hyperoside and 2''-O-galloylhyperin. The precisions were <13.1%, and the accuracies were between -9.1 and 5.5% for both compounds. The method was successfully applied in pharmacokinetic studies following intravenous administration of the total flavonoids of P. calliantha extract in rats. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy in Situs Inversus Totalis: a Case Report

Chinese Medical Sciences Journal = Chung-kuo I Hsüeh K'o Hsüeh Tsa Chih / Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24382230

[Molecular Evolution of Orf1 Gene in Plant LTR-retrotransposons]

Yi Chuan = Hereditas / Zhongguo Yi Chuan Xue Hui Bian Ji. Sep, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24400486

LTR-Retrotransposons are the major DNA components in plant genomes. They usually contain gag and pol, two genes necessary for transpositinal process. Our previous study on soybean genome annotation identified a SARE LTR-Retrotransposon family, which carries the third gene, Orf1. Using a bioinformatics approach, we here reported that 7 out of 33 sequenced genomes have some LTR-Retrotransposons with an extra Orf1 gene/gene fragment (approximately 1-2 kb) in the region between 5' LTR and gag gene, including Eucalyptus grandis, Populus trichocarpa, Gossypium raimondii, Glycine max, Lotus japonica, Linum usitatissimum, and Medicago truncatula. The majority of these elements were inserted into the genomes they reside within the last 3 million years, but their structures, frequencies, intensity, and activity in different host genomes are quite different. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that these unusual elements were clustered in a eudicot branch, suggesting that they may be generated in the evolution of some eudicot species. The relative conservation, transcriptional activity, and the presence of multiple potential conserved motifs suggest that Orf1 gene may still be functional.

[Studies on the Brand Traceability of Milk Powder Based on NIR Spectroscopy Technology]

Guang Pu Xue Yu Guang Pu Fen Xi = Guang Pu. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24409703

Brand traceability of several different kinds of milk powder was studied by combining near infrared spectroscopy diffuse reflectance mode with soft independent modeling of class analogy (SIMCA) in the present paper. The near infrared spectrum of 138 samples, including 54 Guangming milk powder samples, 43 Netherlands samples, and 33 Nestle samples and 8 Yili samples, were collected. After pretreatment of full spectrum data variables in training set, principal component analysis was performed, and the contribution rate of the cumulative variance of the first three principal components was about 99.07%. Milk powder principal component regression model based on SIMCA was established, and used to classify the milk powder samples in prediction sets. The results showed that the recognition rate of Guangming milk powder, Netherlands milk powder and Nestle milk powder was 78%, 75% and 100%, the rejection rate was 100%, 87%, and 88%, respectively. Therefore, the near infrared spectroscopy combined with SIMCA model can classify milk powder with high accuracy, and is a promising identification method of milk powder variety.

Value of Serum Procalcitonin in Evaluating the Prognosis of Sepsis in Elderly Patients with Colorectal Cancer Undergoing Emergency Colorectal Surgery

The Indian Journal of Surgery. Apr, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24426400

Serum procalcitonin (PCT) levels may have predictive value in the prognosis of postoperative sepsis in elderly patients who have undergone colorectal surgery for colorectal cancer in intensive care units (ICUs). A prospective study involving 90 critically ill patients who underwent colorectal surgery for colorectal cancer in ICUs was performed. Twenty-eight patients were diagnosed with sepsis, in accordance with the American College of Chest Physicians/Society of Critical Care Medicine consensus criteria, and these patients were included in the sepsis group. Sixty-two patients, who were without evidence of sepsis, were enrolled in the control group. We measured the serum PCT concentrations preoperatively (immediately before induction of anesthesia), upon arrival in the ICU (ICU day 0), on the morning of the first postoperative day (postoperative day 1), and on the morning of the third postoperative day (postoperative day 3). The C-reactive protein (CRP) index, acute physiology and chronic health evaluation II (APACHE II) score, mechanical duration of ventilation, mortality rate, incidence of multiple organ failure, and usage of continuous renal replacement therapy were evaluated. The area under the curve for the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC-ROCC) was measured to explore the association between the serum PCT and the prognosis. In the sepsis group, 12/28 patients died (mortality rate 43 %). In the control group, 6/62 patients died (mortality rate 9.7 %). On the first postoperative day, the serum PCT level was dramatically higher in the sepsis group than in the control group (2.71 ± 1.13 vs. 1.37 ± 0.57, P ≤ 0.05). The PCT level on the first postoperative day was distinctly higher than that measured upon arrival in the ICU (2.71 ± 1.13 vs. 1.31 ± 0.58, P ≤ 0.05). In the two groups, the CRP concentrations were both markedly higher on the first postoperative day than upon arrival in the ICU (138.89 ± 45.12 vs. 70.43 ± 23.54 in the sepsis group, and 133.13 ± 44.91 vs. 69.65 ± 24.98 in the control group, P ≤ 0.05). Linear regression analysis was performed. The results suggest that the PCT and APACHE-II scores were not significantly associated. On the first and third postoperative days, the PCT levels were associated with increased odds of sepsis (AUC-ROCC, 95 % confidence interval 0.817-0.973, P = 0.000, and 0.755-0.944, P = 0.000, respectively). The outcomes of patients in the sepsis group were worse than those in the control group. PCT levels appear to be early markers of postoperative sepsis in elderly patients undergoing colorectal surgery for colorectal cancer during the ICU course. These findings could allow for early identification of postoperative septic complications and be used for prognostic evaluation of these patients.

[The Re-evaluation of 140 Patients Diagnosed As Ankylosing Spondylitis and Nonradiographic Axial Spondyloarthritis]

Zhonghua Nei Ke Za Zhi. Nov, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24439183

To re-evaluate the diagnoses of ankylosing spondylitis (AS) and nonradiographic axial spondyloarthritis (nr-axSpA) and analyze the incidence and reason of misdiagnosis.

Anti-tumor Effect of Rutin on Human Neuroblastoma Cell Lines Through Inducing G2/M Cell Cycle Arrest and Promoting Apoptosis

TheScientificWorldJournal. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24459422

To further investigate the antineuroblastoma effect of rutin which is a type of flavonoid.

Low-Intensity Shock Wave Therapy and Its Application to Erectile Dysfunction

The World Journal of Men's Health. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24459653

Although phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors (PDE5Is) are a revolution in the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED) and have been marketed since 1998, they cannot restore pathological changes in the penis. Low-energy shock wave therapy (LESWT) has been developed for treating ED, and clinical studies have shown that LESWT has the potential to affect PDE5I non-responders with ED with few adverse effects. Animal studies have shown that LESWT significantly improves penile hemodynamics and restores pathological changes in the penis of diabetic ED animal models. Although the mechanisms remain to be investigated, recent studies have reported that LESWT could partially restore corpus cavernosum fibromuscular pathological changes, endothelial dysfunction, and peripheral neuropathy. LESWT could be a novel modality for treating ED, and particularly PDE5I non-responders with organic ED, in the near future. However, further extensive evidence-based basic and clinical studies are needed. This review intends to summarize the scientific background underlying the effect of LESWT on ED.

Selective MiRNA Expression Profile in Chronic Myeloid Leukemia K562 Cell-derived Exosomes

Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention : APJCP. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24460325

Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is a myeloproliferative disorder of hematopoietic stem cell scarrying the Philadelphia (Ph) chromosome and an oncogenic BCR-ABL1 fusion gene. The tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) of BCR-ABL1 kinase is a treatment of choice for control of CML.

[Effects of Phosphorus Fertilization on Leaf Area Index, Biomass Accumulation and Allocation, and Phosphorus Use Efficiency of Intercropped Maize]

Ying Yong Sheng Tai Xue Bao = The Journal of Applied Ecology / Zhongguo Sheng Tai Xue Xue Hui, Zhongguo Ke Xue Yuan Shenyang Ying Yong Sheng Tai Yan Jiu Suo Zhu Ban. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24483073

A 2-year field experiment was conducted in 2011 and 2012 to investigate the effects of phosphorus (P) fertilization on the leaf area index (LAI), dry matter accumulation (DMA), and P use efficiency (PUE) of maize in wheat/maize/soybean intercropping system. Five P fertilization rates were installed, i.e., 0, 45, 90, 135, and 180 kg P2O5 x hm(-2) for wheat, marked as WP0, WP1, WP2, WP3, and WP4, respectively, and 0, 37.5, 75, 112.5, and 150 kg P2O5 x hm(-2) for maize, marked as MP0, MP1, MP2, MP3, and MP4, respectively. During the coexisted growth periods of wheat and maize, P fertilization increased the LAI, leaf area duration (LAD), and stem and leaf DMA of maize significantly. After the jointing stage of maize, the maize LAI, LAD, DMA, and crop growth rate (CGR) all decreased after an initial increase with the increasing P rate, with the maximum growth in treatment MP2 or MP3. During the reproductive stage of maize, the maize dry mass translocation from vegetative to reproductive organ increased with increasing P fertilization rate, and the grain yield of both maize and whole cropping system increased firstly and decreased then, with the maximum grain yield of maize and whole cropping system being 6588 and 11955 kg x hm(-2) in treatment P3, respectively. The P apparent recovery efficiency of maize was the highest (26.3%) in treatment MP2, being 82.6%, 38.4%, and 152.9% higher than that in MP1 (14.4%), MP3 (19.0%), and MP4 (10.4%), respectively. In sum, for the wheat/maize/soybean intercropping system, applying appropriate amount of P fertilizer could promote maize growth, alleviate the impact of wheat on maize, and consequently, increase the P apparent recovery efficiency of maize. In this study, the appropriate P fertilization rate was 75-112.5 kg P2O5 x hm(-2).

[Correlation Between Dissolution in Vitro and Absorption in Vivo of Chuanping Sustained Release Tablets]

Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi = Zhongguo Zhongyao Zazhi = China Journal of Chinese Materia Medica. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24490556

To investigate the correlation between dissolution in vitro and absorption in vivo of Chuanping sustained release tablets.

Fetus in Fetu: A Rare Presentation

Journal of Research in Medical Sciences : the Official Journal of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24497870

[Clustering of Cardiovascular Risk Factors and Hypertension Control Status Among Hypertensive Patients in the Outpatient Setting]

Zhonghua Xin Xue Guan Bing Za Zhi. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24524610

To investigate the status of the clustering of cardiovascular risk factors and hypertension control among hypertensive patients in the outpatient setting in China.

[Determination of 21 Phenolic Compounds in Soil by Ultrasonic Extraction-gas Chromatography]

Se Pu = Chinese Journal of Chromatography / Zhongguo Hua Xue Hui. Nov, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24558844

An effective method was developed to determine phenolic compounds in soil by ultrasonic extraction-gas chromatography (GC). The soil sample was extracted with methylene dichloride-hexane (2:1, v/v) for 3 min with the extraction temperature lower than 50 degrees C for 3 times. The extract was purified by alkaline aqueous solution (pH > 12), and the phenolic compounds were dissolved in aqueous solution. After the organic solution was discarded, the aqueous solution was adjusted to pH <3 and subsequently extracted with methylene dichloride-ethyl acetate (4:1, v/v) twice. The analytes were determined by GC-FID and quantified by external standard method. The limits of quantification for all tested phenolic compounds were 0.01-0.06 mg/kg in about 10 g soil samples. The recoveries were between 62.9% and 111.4% with the relative standard deviations (RSDs) in the range of 4.3%-24.0% (n = 6). The results showed that this method is sensitive, accurate, and suitable for the determination of the 21 phenolic compounds in soil.

Comparing the Hydrosurgery System to Conventional Debridement Techniques for the Treatment of Delayed Healing Wounds: a Prospective, Randomised Clinical Trial to Investigate Clinical Efficacy and Cost-effectiveness

International Wound Journal. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24618054

In these uncertain times of high health care costs, clinicians are looking for cost-effective devices to employ in their everyday practices. In an effort to promote cost-effective and proper wound repair, the hydrosurgical device allows accurate debridement of only unwanted tissue while precisely conserving viable structures for eventual repair. This prospective, randomised study compared procedures using the hydrosurgery system (VERSAJET™) with conventional debridement in order to assess clinical efficacy and cost-effectiveness when treating subjects with chronic wounds. A total of 40 subjects were recruited. There was no difference in time to achieve stable wound closure between the treatment groups (P = 0·77). There were no significant differences between the two groups in terms of cost of the first operative procedure (P = 0·28), cost of surgical procedures during the study (P = 0·51), cost of study treatment (P = 0·29) or cost to achieve stable wound closure (P = 0·85). There were no differences in quantitative bacterial counts after debridement with either methods (P = 0·376). However, the time taken for the first excision procedure was significantly faster using the hydrosurgery system (VERSAJET) when compared with conventional debridement (P < 0·001). The total excision time for all procedures was significantly less for the Hydrosurgery group than for the conventional group (P = 0·005). Also, the Hydrosurgery group demonstrated significantly less intraoperative blood loss than conventional group for all procedures (P = 0·003). In this study, although there were no differences in time to stable wound closure or bacterial reduction between the two groups, the hydrosurgery system (VERSAJET) did offer advantages in terms of operative times and intraoperative blood loss and was cost-neutral, despite the handpiece cost.

[Activation of Kupffer Cell and Related Signal Pathway Proteins in the Liver of High Fat and High Fructose Diet Induced NAFLD Mice]

Zhonghua Shi Yan He Lin Chuang Bing Du Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Shiyan He Linchuang Bingduxue Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Experimental and Clinical Virology. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24645313

To investigate the expression of F4/80, NF-kappaB, p-AKT, AKT in the liver of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) mice. To determine the role of Kupffer cells (KCs) in the development of NASH (non-alcoholic steatohepatitis), and understand the pathogenic mechanism of NASH.

[Protective Effects of Rhein on Hepatic Progression in HBV-transgenic Mice with Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis Induced by a High-fat Diet]

Zhonghua Shi Yan He Lin Chuang Bing Du Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Shiyan He Linchuang Bingduxue Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Experimental and Clinical Virology. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24645314

To investigate the beneficial effects of Rhein (RH) on hepatic progression in hepatitis B virus (HBV)-transgenic mice with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis induced by a high-fat (HF) diet.

[Model Building-up and Observation on the Mouse Carried Chronic Hepatitis B and Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease]

Zhonghua Shi Yan He Lin Chuang Bing Du Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Shiyan He Linchuang Bingduxue Zazhi = Chinese Journal of Experimental and Clinical Virology. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24645315

Establish the model of mouse with chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).

Survivin, Ki-67 and Tumor Grade As Predictors of Response to Docetaxel-based Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy in Locally Advanced Breast Cancer

Molecular and Clinical Oncology. Sep, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24649257

The response rates to neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) in patients with locally advanced breast cancer (LABC) may vary and the risks may outweigh the benefits in poorly selected patients. This study investigated whether survivin expression, high-level Ki-67 expression, estrogen-receptor (ER) tumor status and high tumor grade are able to predict response to docetaxel-based NAC in LABC patients, in order to perform breast-conserving surgery. In this study, 68 patients (IIb-IIIb) completed 4-6 cycles of TAC (75 mg/m(2) docetaxel, 60 mg/m(2) pirarubicin and 500 mg/m(2) cyclophosphamide, administered every 3 weeks). Tumor samples were obtained prior to chemotherapy. The response to chemotherapy was quantified clinically and pathologically and the histological and molecular tumor characteristics were determined. Association with response was assessed for all the parameters and the patients underwent breast-conserving surgery or radical mastectomy accordingly. A clinical complete response was observed in 21 (31%) and a partial response in 37 (54%) of the 68 patients. Thus, the overall clinical response rate (ORR) was 85%. A pathological complete response (pCR) was observed in 14 (20%) of the 68 patients and 37 patients (54%) underwent breast-conserving surgery. In the univariate analysis, survivin expression, high-level Ki-67 expression and high tumor grade (grade III) were significantly associated with ORR (P=0.007, 0.024 and 0.047, respectively). Survivin expression and high-level Ki-67 expression were significantly associated with pCR (P=0.029 and 0.048, respectively). In the multivariate analysis, survivin expression (P=0.030) and tumor grade (P=0.036), but not high-level Ki-67 and ER expression, were significantly associated with ORR and none of these factors was significantly associated with pCR. In conclusion, expression of survivin and high tumor grade were of predictive value for ORR to docetaxel-based NAC in LABC patients, leading to more patients successfully undergoing breast conserving-surgery. Immunohistochemistry of survivin and the Elston and Ellis criteria of tumor grade may provide a widely applicable, cost-effective method of patient selection for NAC.

Efficacy of Percutaneous Transhepatic Cholangiodrainage (PTCD) in Patients with Unresectable Pancreatic Cancer

Tumour Biology : the Journal of the International Society for Oncodevelopmental Biology and Medicine. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24264311

For patients with pancreatic cancer who suffer from obstructive jaundice, percutaneous transhepatic cholangiodrainage (PTCD) is the treatment of choice. However, there are no standards for palliative care for patients undergoing this treatment. The aim of this study was to retrospectively evaluate the efficacy of post-palliative treatment in patients with unresectable pancreatic cancer who were previously treated with PTCD. The 47 patients included in this study had unresectable pancreatic cancer, presented with obstructive jaundice, had no prior history of chemotherapy, and underwent PTCD. They were divided into two groups. Group A was composed of 21 patients who received post-palliative treatment (chemotherapy, radiation, or chemoradiotherapy). Group B consisted of 26 patients who were under best supportive care (BSC). We compared the median overall survival time between the two groups to evaluate the efficacy of post-palliative treatment. The median overall survival time (MOST) of patients undergoing PTCD was 7.19 months. MOST was 9.07 months for patients in group A (P = 0.017 vs. group B) and 5.52 months for those in group B. Among the patients receiving post-palliative treatment, 12 (57% of patients) received only a single therapy (either chemo or radiation), and 9 (43%) received chemoradiotherapy. Their median overall survival times were 8.31 and 11.15 months, respectively (P = 0.325). Post-palliative treatment in patients with unresectable pancreatic cancer previously treated with PTCD is more effective than only best supportive care alone. Patients receiving both chemo and radiation may benefit more in terms of overall survival compared to patients receiving only one or the other.

Ultrasound Signal Wavelet Analysis to Quantify the Microstructures of Normal and Frozen Tissues in Vitro

Cryobiology. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24269529

Cryosurgery has a number of advantages that make it particularly appealing in the treatment of liver cancer. However, a major problem for the wide clinical adoption of hepatic cryosurgery is the lack of a cost effective high resolution imaging way which is capable of both performing precise monitoring of the freezing process in situ and evaluating the postoperative effects after surgery. The mean scatterer spacing has been found to be an important parameter for describing the ultrasonic scattering and characterization of biological tissues. However, its potential values in the evaluation of cryosurgical effects of tissues reserved unclear so far. Here, we investigated the wavelet analysis to estimate the mean scatterer spacing parameter in normal and freeze-thawed tissues on porcine livers in vitro. The experimental results carried out at 10 MHz using weakly focused pulse-echo signal element transducer indicated that the mean scatterer spacing in normal liver tissues is 1.12 ± 0.13 mm whereas it is 1.67 ± 0.25 mm in several pre-frozen and then thawed tissues. These results disclosed the good correlation between the wavelet data and microstructures of the normal or thawed tissues, and hence demonstrated that the wavelet analysis holds promise to be used as an effective method for the characterization of thawed tissues scatterer spacing. The present method offers a potential pragmatic strategy for monitoring the transition zone between frozen and unfrozen tissues during the surgical therapy, and evaluating postoperative effects.

CtBP1 Overexpression in Keratinocytes Perturbs Skin Homeostasis

The Journal of Investigative Dermatology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24280726

Carboxyl-terminal-binding protein-1 (CtBP1) is a transcriptional corepressor with multiple in vitro targets, but its in vivo functions are largely unknown. We generated keratinocyte-specific CtBP1 transgenic mice with a keratin-5 promoter (K5.CtBP1) to probe the pathological roles of CtBP1. At transgene expression levels comparable to endogenous CtBP1 in acute skin wounds, the K5.CtBP1 epidermis displayed hyperproliferation, loss of E-cadherin, and failed terminal differentiation. Known CtBP1 target genes associated with these processes, e.g., p21, Brca1, and E-cadherin, were downregulated in K5.CtBP1 skin. Surprisingly, K5.CtBP1 pups also exhibited a hair loss phenotype. We found that expression of the Distal-less 3 (Dlx3), a critical regulator of hair follicle differentiation and cycling, was decreased in K5.CtBP1 mice. Molecular studies revealed that CtBP1 directly suppressed Dlx3 transcription. Consistently, K5.CtBP1 mice displayed abnormal hair follicles with decreased expression of Dlx3 downstream targets Gata3, Hoxc13, and hair keratins. In summary, this CtBP1 transgenic model provides in vivo evidence for certain CtBP1 functions predicted from in vitro studies, reveals--to our knowledge--previously unreported functions and transcriptional activities of CtBP1 in the context of epithelial-mesenchymal interplay, and suggests that CtBP1 has a pathogenic role in hair follicle morphogenesis and differentiation.

Role of Ozone in UV-C Disinfection, Demonstrated by Comparison Between Wild-Type and Mutant Conidia of Aspergillus Niger

Photochemistry and Photobiology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24283963

This study aimed to investigate the tolerance of a melanized wild-type strain of Aspergillus niger (CON1) and its light-colored mutant (MUT1) to UV-C light and the concomitantly generated ozone. Treatments were segregated into four groups based on whether UV irradiation was used and the presence or absence of ozone: (-UV, -O3 ), (-UV, +O3 ), (+UV, -O3 ) and (+UV, +O3 ). The survival of CON1 and MUT1 conidia under +UV decreased as the exposure time increased, with CON1 showing greater resistance to UV irradiation than MUT1. Ozone induced CON1 conidium inactivation only under conditions of UV radiation exposure. While, the inactivation effect of ozone on MUT1 was always detectable regardless of the presence of UV irradiation. Furthermore, the CON1 conidial suspension showed lower UV light transmission than MUT1 when examined at the same concentration. Compared with the pigment in MUT1, the melanin in CON1 exhibited more potent radical-scavenging activity and stronger UV absorbance. These results suggested that melanin protected A. niger against UV disinfection via UV screening and free radical scavenging. The process by which UV-C disinfection induces a continual decrease in conidial survival suggests that UV irradiation and ozone exert a synergistic fungicidal effect on A. niger prior to reaching a plateau.

Monitoring the Rumen Pectinolytic Bacteria Treponema Saccharophilum Using Real-time PCR

FEMS Microbiology Ecology. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24289046

Treponema saccharophilum is a pectinolytic bacterium isolated from the bovine rumen. The abundance of this bacterium has not been well determined, reflecting the lack of a reliable and accurate detection method. To develop a rapid method for monitoring T. saccharophilum, we performed pyrosequencing of genomic DNA isolated from rumen microbiota to explore the 16S rRNA gene sequences of T. saccharophilum candidates. Species-specific primers were designed based on fifteen sequences of partial 16S rRNA genes generated through pyrosequencing with 97% or higher similarity with T. saccharophilum DSM2985 along with sequence from type strain. The relative abundance of T. saccharophilum was quantified in both in vitro and in vivo rumen systems with varied pectin-containing forages using real-time PCR. There was a clear association of T. saccharophilum with alfalfa hay, which contains more pectin than Chinese wild rye hay or corn stover. The relative abundance of T. saccharophilum was as high as 0.58% in vivo, comparable with the population density of other common rumen bacteria. It is recognized that T. saccharophilum plays an important role in pectin digestion in the rumen.

Ionomycin Inhibits Jurkat T Cell Behaviors in the Presence of Phorbol-12,13-dibutyrate

Annals of Hematology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24292536

Ionomycin in conjunction with phorbol-12,13-dibutyrate (PDBu) is conventionally used as a stimulator to activate cells, especially original T cells. But we accidently found it had an entirely opposite action on malignant tumor cells derived from T cells. Thus, influence of ionomycin on human leukemia Jurkat T cell behaviors and its preliminary mechanistic process were explored in the presence of PDBu. Ionomycin could remarkably inhibit colony formation of the cells, and inhibitory rate of the cell proliferation was increased with ionomycin treatment in a dose- or time-related relationship, following the reduction of ERK1/2 and phosphorylated-ERK1/2 levels. However, a high dose of ionomycin might moderately repress mid-stage activation of the cells. It also blocked the cell entry at S-phase and G2/M-phase with the attenuation of transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) level in the cells, and promoted the cell apoptosis following the augment of caspase-3 and cleaved caspase-3 in the cells. The dramatic elevation of [Ca2(+)]i and intracellular pH (pHi) was simultaneously followed by the above alteration of the cell behaviors. These results indicate that ionomycin may strongly inhibit human acute T lymphocyte leukemia progress in the presence of PDBu through the inhibition of ERK1/2 signaling, the activation of caspase-3 and the attenuation of TGF-β mediated by the [Ca2(+)]i and pHi enhancement, providing a novel insight into function and potential application of both ionomycin and PDBu.

Protective Effect of Phosphatidylcholine on Restoration of Ethanol-injured Hepatocytes Related with Caveolin-1

The Journal of Membrane Biology. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24292666

The absorption of phospholipid may improve the fluidity of membrane and enzyme activities. Phospholipids also play a role in promoting Caveolae formation and membrane synthesis. Caveolin-1 has a significant effect on signaling pathways involved in regulating cell proliferation and stress responsiveness. Thus, we can speculate that Caveolin-1 could affect the sense of environmental stress. We use Chang liver cell line to investigate the ability of Caveolin-1 to modulate the cellular response to ethanol injury. Caveolin-1 downregulate cells (Cav-1(-/-)) were established by stable transfecting with psiRNA-CAV1 plasmids, which were more sensitive to toxic effects of ethanol than the untransfected parental cells (WT). Releasing of ALT and electric conductivity were changed significantly in Cav-1(-/-) cells compared with WT. Caveolin-1 gene silencing could obviously down-regulate the activities of protein kinase C-α (PKC-α) and phospho-p42/44 MAP kinase, indicating cell proliferation and self-repairing abilities were inhibited. However, the levels of Caveolin-1 and PKC-α were increased by phosphatidylcholine administration. The results indicated that the inhibition of lipid peroxidation by phosphatidylcholine could lead to the prevention of membrane disruption, which closely correlated with the level of Caveolin-1. Since the protective effects of phosphatidylcholine against ethanol-induced lipid peroxidation might be regulated by phospholipid-PKC-α signaling pathway, related with Caveolin-1, the potential effects of phosphatidylcholine on membranes need to be verified.

Conserved Sequence Repeats of IQGAP1 Mediate Binding to Ezrin

Journal of Proteome Research. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24294828

Mammalian IQGAP proteins all feature multiple ∼50 amino acid sequence repeats near their N-termini, and little is known about the function of these "Repeats". We have expressed and purified the Repeats from human IQGAP1 to identify binding partners. We used mass spectrometry to identify 42 mouse kidney proteins that associate with the IQGAP1 Repeats including the ERM proteins ezrin, radixin, and moesin. ERM proteins have an N-terminal FERM domain (4.1, ezrin, radixin, moesin) through which they bind to protein targets and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) and a C-terminal actin-binding domain and function to link the actin cytoskeleton to distinct locations on the cell cortex. Isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) reveals that the IQGAP1 Repeats directly bind to the ezrin FERM domain, while no binding is seen for full-length "autoinhibited" ezrin or a version of full-length ezrin intended to mimic the activated protein. ITC also indicates that the ezrin FERM domain binds to the Repeats from IQGAP2 but not the Repeats from IQGAP3. We conclude that IQGAP1 and IQGAP2 are positioned at the cell cortex by ERM proteins. We propose that the IQGAP3 Repeats may likewise bind to FERM domains for signaling purposes.

Durability of Efficacy After Telbivudine Off-treatment in Chronic Hepatitis B Patients

Journal of Clinical Virology : the Official Publication of the Pan American Society for Clinical Virology. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24300414

Current international guidelines indicate that finite therapy with nucleos(t)ide analogues (NAs) is possible in chronic hepatitis B (CHB) patients. Here we evaluate the durability of efficacy after telbivudine (LdT) off-treatment.

Trastuzumab and Oxaliplatin Exhibit a Synergistic Antitumor Effect in HER2-postive Gastric Cancer Cells

Anti-cancer Drugs. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24300914

Trastuzumab has recently been recommended for the treatment of epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER2)-positive advanced gastric cancer in combination with the capecitabine/cisplatin (XP) versus continuous infusion of 5-fluorouracil/cisplatin (FP) regimen. However, it is unclear whether it is rational to combine trastuzumab with other chemotherapy regimens in clinical practice. Our study demonstrates that adding trastuzumab to oxaliplatin, a commonly used third-generation platinum derivative, increases the antitumor effect in vitro. In MTT assays, combination treatment with oxaliplatin and trastuzumab significantly decreased the concentration of oxaliplatin required to induce 50% growth inhibition in HER2-positive gastric cancer cells. Further investigation revealed that the trastuzumab-oxaliplatin combination induced cell cycle arrest and decreased expression of both p-AKT and p-ERK. Notably, this treatment combination induced downregulation of the excision repair cross-complementation group 1 (ERCC1) protein, which is involved in the key repair process of the oxaliplatin-DNA platinum adduct at the protein level. Similar changes were also observed in HER2-positive breast cancer cells. These findings suggest that trastuzumab synergizes the cytotoxic effect of oxaliplatin on HER2-positive gastric and breast cancer cells. Our study provides preclinical evidence for the optimization of this combination regimen in the treatment of HER2-positive gastric cancer patients.

An Improved G-quadruplex DNAzyme for Dual-functional Electrochemical Biosensing of Adenosines and Hydrogen Peroxide from Cancer Cells

Chemical Communications (Cambridge, England). Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24336434

A dual-functional electrochemical biosensor for adenosines and hydrogen peroxide from cancer cells was developed based on a traditional switchable electrochemical sensing format and ATP improved G-quadruplex DNAzyme as a biolabel.

Lifetime Risk for Cardiovascular Disease in a Chinese Population: The Chinese Multi-Provincial Cohort Study

European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24336461

Lifetime risk estimation is used to predict long-term cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk across the entire life span. However, most of the lifetime risk estimation came from the studies based on western population. This study aimed to assess the lifetime risk of CVD and the impact of risk factors on lifetime risk of CVD in Chinese population.

SOCS2 Inhibited Mitochondria Biogenesis Via Inhibiting P38 MAPK/ATF2 Pathway in C2C12 Cells

Molecular Biology Reports. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24352701

In order to investigate the mechanism of suppressor of cytokine signaling 2 (SOCS2) on mitochondrial biogenesis, RNA interference and over-expression plasmid vectors of SOCS2 were used to transfect murine skeletal muscle C2C12 cells. Results demonstrated that over-expression of SOCS2 inhibited the differentiation of C2C12 cells, and reduced the expression of MyHC, MyoD and MyoG while elevated the protein expression of MSTN. Meanwhile the expression of PGC-1α, MDH, CPT-1 were significantly elevated in the RNA interference of SOCS2 group which were decreased in SOCS2 overexpression group. However, there was no change on the expression of UCP1 in both two groups. JC-1 dyeing showed overexpression of SOCS2 decreased the mitochondrial membrane potential and results of immunofluorescence, real-time PCR and western blotting indicated the increase expression of Cyt c, while interference SOCS2 had the opposite effects in C2C12 cells. Moreover, interference of SOCS2 elevated the p38 phosphorylation level then further increased the phosphorylation of ATF2, whereas overexpression of SOCS2 alleviated this phenomenon. Taken together, our observations indicated that SOCS2 could suppress myotube formation, act as an anti-regulator of mitochondria biogenesis via inhibiting p38 MAPK signal pathway.

Trypsin-catalyzed N-terminal Labeling of Peptides with Stable Isotope-coded Affinity Tags for Proteome Analysis

Analytical Chemistry. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24354301

An enzymatic approach to label peptide N-termini with isotope-coded affinity tags is presented. This method exploits the high activity of trypsin for peptide synthesis in organic solvents. A cosubstrate containing a stable isotope-coded Arg residue and a biotin tag was synthesized. When the cosubstrate was incubated with tryptic peptides and trypsin in ethanol solution, the stable isotope-coded affinity tag was specifically coupled onto the N-termini of peptides via the formation of new peptide bonds. The labeled peptides were specifically enriched by avidin affinity chromatography and then were submitted to liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) for quantification. This enrichment step effectively reduced the interference by unlabeled peptides. The excellent performance of this approach was demonstrated by labeling standard peptides as well as a mouse liver digest. In addition to one amino acid residue, a few dipeptide tags were also introduced to the N-termini of peptides successfully by this enzymatic approach. It was found that the identifications for samples labeled with these tags were highly complementary. Coupling a short sequence tag onto peptides could be an effective approach to improve the coverage for proteome analysis.

Impact of Bioaugmentation on Biochemical Methane Potential for Wheat Straw with Addition of Clostridium Cellulolyticum

Bioresource Technology. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24355075

Hydrolysis is usually the rate-limited step for methane production from lignocellulosic substrate. Two bioaugmentation strategies, using the cellulolytic anaerobic bacteria Clostridium cellulolyticum, were adopted to enhance the hydrolysis of wheat straw with the purpose of improving the biochemical methane potential (BMP). Namely, the 24-h-incubated seed (C24S) with cellobiose as carbon source and the 60-h-incubated seed (WS60S) with wheat straw as carbon source were respectively used as the bioaugmentation agents. As a result, the BMPs were respectively 342.5 and 326.3 ml g(-1) VS of wheat straw, with an increase of 13.0% and 7.6% comparing to the no-bioaugmentation BMP of 303.3 ml g(-1) VS. The result indicates that the anaerobic digestion efficiency can be improved by bioaugmentation, which therefore may be a promising method for improving methane production from lignocellulosic substrate.

Simultaneous Fluorescence Sensing of Cys and GSH from Different Emission Channels

Journal of the American Chemical Society. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24358965

A chlorinated coumarin-hemicyanine dye with three potential reaction sites was exploited as fluorescent probe for biothiols. The Cys-induced substitution-rearrangement-cyclization, Hcy-induced substitution-rearrangement, and GSH-induced substitution-cyclizatioin cascades lead to the corresponding amino-coumarin, amino-coumarin-hemicyanine, thiol-coumarin with distinct photophysical properties, enabling Cys and GSH to be selectively detected from different emission channels at two different excitation wavelengths.

GJB2 Mutations Are Rare in Probands with Hearing Loss in Chinese Assortative Mating Families

International Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24359977

GJB2 mutation is recognized as the prevalent causes of non-syndromic hearing loss (NSHL) worldwide. However, the mutation profiles of GJB2 are rarely reported in deafness probands of the assortative mating family. Therefore, this study aimed to characterize the frequencies of GJB2 mutations in probands with hearing loss in the assortative mating family in Hubei province, Central China.

Malignant Cells Derived from 3T3 Fibroblast Feeder Layer in Cell Culture for Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma

Experimental Cell Research. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24368151

In this study, we discovered a subpopulation of 3T3 feeder cells were malignantly transformed by nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) tumor cells during co-culture. The transformed 3T3 cells acquired an accelerated growth rate, displayed loosely attached multilayer growth in vitro and highly tumorigenic in vivo. Most strikingly, instead of forming sarcomas, they developed into carcinoma-like tumors somewhat resembling the original NPC. We further demonstrated the transformation is not a single isolated event, rather a common reproducible, cell contact dispensable phenomena among NPC tumor cells. However, NPC tumor cells alone were not sufficient to confer the transformed characteristics onto normal human cells.

Indirect Prediction of Liver Fibrosis by Quantitative Measurement of Spleen Stiffness Using the FibroScan System

Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine : Official Journal of the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24371101

To evaluate quantitative measurement of spleen stiffness for indirect assessment of liver fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis B and to correlate spleen stiffness with liver stiffness using pathologic examination as a reference standard.

Association Between FSHR Polymorphisms and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Among Chinese Women in North China

Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24390680

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common endocrine disorder disease among women in reproductive-age. Since follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) exerts important biological functions, the association between PCOS and FSH receptor (FSHR) polymorphisms attracts wide attention. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether polymorphisms of FSHR at 307 and 680 codons are associated with PCOS patients in China.

Procalcitonin Testing for Diagnosis and Short-term Prognosis in Bacterial Infection Complicated by Congestive Heart Failure: a Multicenter Analysis of 4,698 Cases

Critical Care (London, England). Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24393388

Procalcitonin (PCT) is a biomarker for the clinical diagnosis of bacterial infection that is more specific and earlier than fever, changes in white blood cell count, and blood cultures. Congestive heart failure is an important cause of endotoxin resorption from the intestine, which significantly increases PCT expression in noninfected patients with heart failure. The diagnostic performance and cut-off value of PCT in patients with bacterial infection complicated by congestive heart failure needs to be confirmed.

MiR-34a is Essential for P19(Arf)-driven Cell Cycle Arrest

Cell Cycle (Georgetown, Tex.). Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24401748

The Arf tumor suppressor gene product, p19(Arf), regulates cell proliferation in incipient cancer cells and during embryo development. Beyond its commonly accepted p53-dependent actions, p19(Arf) also acts independently of p53 in both contexts. One such p53-independent effect with in vivo relevance includes its repression of Pdgfrβ, a process that is essential for vision in the mouse. We have utilized cell culture-based and mouse models to define a new role for miR-34a in this process. Ectopic expression of Arf in cultured cells enhanced the expression of several microRNAs predicted to target Pdgfrß synthesis, including the miR-34 family. Because miR-34a has been implicated as a p53-dependent effector, we investigated whether it also contributed to p53-independent effects of p19(Arf). Indeed, in mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs) lacking p53, Arf-driven repression of Pdgfrβ and its blockade of Pdgf-B stimulated DNA synthesis were both completely interrupted by anti-microRNA against miR-34a. Ectopic miR-34a directly targeted Pdgfrβ and a plasmid reporter containing wild-type Pdgfrβ 3'UTR sequence, but not one in which the miR-34a target sequence was mutated. Although miR-34a expression has been linked to p53-a well-known effector of p19(Arf)-Arf expression and its knockdown correlated with miR-34a level in MEFs lacking p53. Finally, analysis of the mouse embryonic eye demonstrated that Arf controlled expression of miR-34a, and the related miR-34b and c, in vivo during normal mouse development. Our findings indicate that miR-34a provides an essential link between p19(Arf) and its p53-independent capacity to block cell proliferation driven by Pdgfrβ. This has ramifications for developmental and tumor suppressor roles of Arf.

Selection and Evaluation of Novel Reference Genes for Quantitative Reverse Transcription PCR (qRT-PCR) Based on Genome and Transcriptome Data in Brassica Napus L

Gene. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24406618

Selection of reference genes in Brassica napus, a tetraploid (4×) species, is a very difficult task without information on genome and transcriptome. By now, only several traditional reference genes which show significant expression differentiation under different conditions are used in B. napus. In the present study, based on genome and transcriptome data of the rapeseed Zhongshuang-11 cultivar, 14 candidate reference genes were screened for investigation in different tissues, cultivars, and treated conditions of B. napus. These genes were as follows: ELF5, ENTH, F-BOX7, F-BOX2, FYPP1, GDI1, GYF, MCP2d, OTP80, PPR, SPOC, Unknown1, Unknown2 and UBA. Among them, excluding GYF and FYPP1, another 12 genes, were identified to perform better than traditional reference genes ACTIN7 and GAPDH. To further validate the accuracy of the newly developed reference genes in normalization, expression levels of BnCAT1 (B. napus catalase 1) in different rapeseed tissues and seedlings under stress conditions were normalized by the three most stable reference genes PPR, GDI1, and ENTH and little difference existed in normalization results. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time B. napus reference genes have been provided with the help of complete genome and transcriptome information. The new reference genes provided in this study are more accurate than previously reported reference genes in quantifying expression levels of B. napus genes.

A Subset of CD20(+) MM Patients Without the T(11;14) Are Associated with Poor Prognosis and a Link to Aberrant Expression of Wnt Signaling

Hematological Oncology. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24408089

MRI-based Finite Element Simulation on Radiofrequency Ablation of Thyroid Cancer

Computer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24411316

In order to provide a quantitative disclosure on the RFA (radiofrequency ablation)-induced thermal ablation effects within thyroid tissues, this paper has developed a three-dimensional finite element simulation strategy based on a MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)-reconstructed model. The thermal lesion's growth was predicted and interpreted under two treatment conditions, i.e. single-cooled-electrode modality and two-cooled-electrode system. The results show that the thermal lesion's growth is significantly affected by two factors including the position of RF electrode and thermal-physiological behavior of the breathing airflow. Additional parametric studies revealed several valuable phenomena, e.g. with the electrode's movement, thermal injury with varying severity would happen to the trachea wall. Besides, the changes in airflow mass produced evident effects on the total heat flux of thyroid surface, while the changes in breathing frequency only generated minor effects that can be ignored. The present study provided a better understanding on the thermal lesions of RFA within thyroid domain, which will help guide future treatment of the thyroid cancer.

Cognitive Function and Plasma BDNF Levels Among Manganese-exposed Smelters

Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24415644

To explore the potential dose-response relationship between manganese (Mn) exposure and cognitive function and also plasma brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels in occupational Mn exposure workers.

Effects of TRPC6 on Invasibility of Low-differentiated Prostate Cancer Cells

Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24418082

To study the expression of TRPC6 among prostate cancer cells, establish high expression cell lines of TRPC6, and to provide potential cell mode for prostate cancer oncogenesis and development.

Reloading Functionally Ameliorates Disuse-induced Muscle Atrophy by Reversing Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Similar Benefits Are Gained by Administering a Combination of Mitochondrial Nutrients

Free Radical Biology & Medicine. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24418157

We previously found that mitochondrial dysfunction occurs in disuse-induced muscle atrophy. However, the mitochondrial remodeling that occurs during reloading, an effective approach for rescuing unloading-induced atrophy, remains to be investigated. In this study, using a rat model of 3-week hindlimb unloading plus 7-day reloading, we found that reloading protected mitochondria against dysfunction, including mitochondrial loss, abnormal mitochondrial morphology, inhibited biogenesis, and activation of mitochondria-associated apoptotic signaling. Interestingly, a combination of nutrients, including α-lipoic acid, acetyl-L-carnitine, hydroxytyrosol, and CoQ10, which we designed to target mitochondria, was able to efficiently rescue muscle atrophy via a reloading-like action. It is suggested that reloading ameliorates skeletal muscle atrophy through the activation of mitochondrial biogenesis and the amelioration of oxidative stress. Nutrient administration acted similarly in unloaded rats. Here, the study of mitochondrial remodeling in rats during unloading and reloading provides a more detailed picture of the pathology of muscle atrophy.

Cost-effectiveness of Optimal Use of Acute Myocardial Infarction Treatments and Impact on Coronary Heart Disease Mortality in China

Circulation. Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24425706

The cost-effectiveness of the optimal use of hospital-based acute myocardial infarction (AMI) treatments and their potential impact on coronary heart disease (CHD) mortality in China is not well known.

Human Adipose-derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells: a Better Cell Source for Nervous System Regeneration

Chinese Medical Journal. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24438624

In order to suggest an ideal source of adult stem cells for the treatment of nervous system diseases, MSCs from human adipose tissue and bone marrow were isolated and studied to explore the differences with regard to cell morphology, surface markers, neuronal differentiation capacity, especially the synapse structure formation and the secretion of neurotrophic factors.

Microencapsulated VEGF Gene-modified Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stromal Cells Promote the Vascularization of Tissue-engineered Dermis: an Experimental Study

Cytotherapy. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24438897

Tissue-engineered dermis (TED) is thought to be the best treatment for skin defect wounds; however, lack of vascular structures in these products can cause slow vascularization or even transplant failure. We assessed the therapeutic potential of microencapsulated human umbilical cord mesenchymal stromal cells (hUCMSCs) expressing vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in vascularization of TED.

Study on the Efficiency and Interaction Mechanism of a Decapeptide Inhibitor of β-amyloid Aggregation

Biomacromolecules. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24443821

This paper reports an active decapeptide inhibitor (RR: RYYAAFFARR) of β-amyloid (Aβ(1-40)) aggregation. Traditional inhibitors target the hydrophobic core of Aβ (Aβ(16-20)) and were designed based on the single hydrophobic interaction. RR was designed to target an extended region (Aβ(11-23)), which contains three important regions of Aβ(1-40). RR exhibits stronger binding affinity for Aβ(1-40) (K(D) = 1.10 μM) than the known β-sheet breaker LPFFD (K(D) = 156 μM). Our study shows that RR inhibited the fibrillation of Aβ(1-40) by nearly 75% at an equimolar concentration, and that a 1:4 ratio of Aβ(1-40)/ RR almost completely inhibited fibrillation. The interaction mechanism was also investigated by changing the ionic strength or the structure of RR. The results revealed that RR binds to Aβ(1-40) because of its strong affinity for Aβ(11-23), which is mainly driven by hydrophobic and electrostatic interactions and hydrogen bonding.

Effects of TSH on the Function of Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells

Journal of Molecular Endocrinology. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24444496

Recent studies have reported that subclinical hypothyroidism (SCH) is associated with atherosclerosis (AS). Thyroid hormone is maintained at normal levels in patients with SCH, whereas TSH is increased. However, the pathogenesis of AS in association with SCH is only partially understood. In addition, endothelial dysfunction plays an important role in the development of AS. The purpose of the present research was to study the direct effect of TSH on human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). The expression of some genes associated with endothelial dysfunction after treatment with TSH was evaluated by real-time PCR and western blotting respectively. At first, we showed that the TSH receptor (TSHR) is expressed in HUVECs. We also provide evidence indicating that TSH treatment promotes tumor necrosis factor α-induced endothelial cells interactions by upregulating the expression of the adhesion molecules intercellular adhesion molecule-1. Furthermore, the expression of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and prostacyclin (PGI₂) was significantly attenuated following treatment with TSH in dose- and time-dependent manner. Conversely, the results indicated that TSH upregulated endothelin-1 (ET1) mRNA and protein expression in HUVECs, similar effects were observed for plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI1) after treatment with various concentrations of TSH. Taken together, these results demonstrate that elevated TSH can promote endothelial dysfunction by altering gene expression in HUVECs.

Rapid and Efficient Functionalized Ionic Liquid-catalyzed Aldol Condensation Reactions Associated with Microwave Irradiation

International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24445262

Five quaternary ammonium ionic liquid (IL) and two tetrabutylphosphonium ILs were prepared and characterized. An environmentally benign and convenient functionalized ionic liquid catalytic system was thus explored in the aldol condensation reactions of aromatic aldehydes with acetone. The aldol reactions proceeded more efficiently through microwave-assisted heating than through conventional thermal heating. The yield of products obtained under microwave heating for 30 min was approximately 90%, and the ILs can be recovered and reused at least five times without apparent loss of activity. In addition, this catalytic system can be successfully extended to the Henry reactions.

TSH Stimulates the Proliferation of Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells

Endocrine. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24452868

Subclinical hypothyroidism (SCH) was reported to be associated with atherosclerosis (AS) in recent studies. Thyroid hormone levels are normal in patients with SCH, but the levels of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) are increased. Thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor (TSHR) in extra-thyroidal tissues plays a pathophysiological role in these conditions. Our previous results demonstrated that TSHR was functional in hepatocytes and revealed elevated total cholesterol levels in the serum, which were an independent risk factor for AS. TSHR is expressed in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs), and VSMC proliferation plays an important role in the development of AS. Cell proliferation was measured by the MTT assay. Intracellular cyclic AMP (cAMP) was measured using a cAMP ELISA kit. Cells were analyzed using a flow cytometer to determine the cell-cycle phase of each cell. For the purpose of detecting cyclin A and cyclin D, immunohistochemical staining and western blots were performed. Real-time PCR was used to assess the VSMC phenotypes. TSH increased cell progression into the G2/M phases and induced VSMC proliferation; thus, functional TSHR was present on VSMCs. Furthermore, the expression of cyclin D1 and cyclin A was increased. In addition, the results indicated that VSMCs undergo a phenotypic transformation from a contractile state to a synthetic state after treatment with different concentrations of TSH. Elevated TSH can promote VSMC proliferation through the cAMP-dependent pathway.

Conditioned Medium of Human Adipose-derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Mediates Protection in Neurons Following Glutamate Excitotoxicity by Regulating Energy Metabolism and GAP-43 Expression

Metabolic Brain Disease. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24458787

Glutamate excitotoxicity has been implicated as one of the pathological mechanisms contributing to neuronal cell death and is involved in many neurological disorders. Stem cell transplantation is a promising approach for the treatment of nervous system damage or diseases. Previous studies have shown that mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have important therapeutic effects in experimental animal and preclinical disease model of central nervous system pathology. However, it is not well understood whether neurogenesis of MSCs or MSC conditioned-medium (CM) containing microparticles mediates therapeutic effects. Here, we investigated the neuroprotective effects of human adipose-derived MSCs (AMSCs) on cortical neurons using models of glutamate excitotoxicity. Following exposure to glutamate (100 μM, 15 min), cortical neurons were co-cultured with either AMSCs separated by a semiporous membrane (prohibiting direct cell-cell contact) or with AMSC-CM for 18 h. Compared to untreated control groups, AMSCs and AMSC-CM partially and similarly reduced neuronal cell damages, as indicated by reduced LDH release, a decreased number of trypan-positive cells and a decline in the number of apoptotic nuclei. Protection by CM was associated with increased GAP-43 expression and an elevated number of GAP-43-positive neurites. Furthermore, CM increased levels of ATP, NAD(+) and NADH and the ratio of NAD(+)/NADH, while preventing a glutamate-induced decline in mitochondrial membrane potential. These results demonstrate that AMSC-CM mediates direct neuroprotection by inhibiting neuronal cell damage/apoptosis, promoting nerve regeneration and repair, and restoring bioenergy following energy depletion caused by glutamate excitotoxicity.

[Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase Deficiency-induced Schizophrenia in a School-age Boy]

Zhongguo Dang Dai Er Ke Za Zhi = Chinese Journal of Contemporary Pediatrics. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24461181

Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) deficiency is a rare autosomal recessive disorder. It is known that MTHFR deficiency may result in hyperhomocysteinemia, but MTHFR deficiency-induced schizophrenia has been rarely reported. Here we present the clinical course, biochemical and genetic characteristics of schizophrenia resulted from MTHFR deficiency in a school-age boy. He was 13 years old. He was admitted with a two-year history of fear, auditory hallucination, learning difficulty, sleeping problems, irascibility, drowsing and giggling. At admission, he had significantly elevated plasma and urine levels of total homocysteine, significantly decreased levels of folate in serum and cerebrospinal fluid, and a normal blood concentration of methionine. Further DNA sequencing analysis showed 665C>T homozygous mutations in the MTHFR gene. The patient was diagnosed with MTHFR deficiency-associated schizophrenia and treatment with calcium folinate, vitamin B12, vitamin B6, and betaine was initiated. After the treatment for 1 week, his plasma and urine levels of homocysteine were decreased to a normal range and the clinical symptoms were significantly improved. After 3 months of treatment, the patient returned to school. He is now living with normal school life. In summary, children with late-onset MTHFR deficiency and secondary cerebral folate deficiency may lead to schizophrenia. This rare condition can be early diagnosed through analyses of blood and urine total homocysteine, amino acids in blood and folate in blood and cerebral fluid and successfully treated with folinic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and betaine.

Arrays of ZnO/AZO (Al-doped ZnO) Nanocables: a Higher Open Circuit Voltage and Remarkable Improvement of Efficiency for CdS-sensitized Solar Cells

Journal of Colloid and Interface Science. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24461846

Photoelectrode of nanocables (NCs) structure of ZnO nanowires (NWs) coated with Al-doped ZnO (AZO) shells was investigated for CdS quantum dots sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs). ZnO NWs serve as the frame for the preparation of AZO shells, in which electron transport more rapidly due to the more higher electron mobility of AZO (n-ZnO) than that of i-ZnO. AZO shells were assembled onto the surface of ZnO NWs via a spin-coating method. Optical band-gap of the ZnO/AZO films varies from 3.19 eV for pure ZnO to 3.25 eV for AZO (15%) depending on the Al-doping concentration. The PL intensity of AZO/ZnO, V(oc), J(sc) and η of the cells first increased and then decreased with the increase in the Al-doping (from 0% to 20%) and post-annealed temperature. Remarkably, the value of V(oc) can achieve above 0.8 V after Al-doping. The dark current and absorption spectrum provided direct evidence of the increase in J(sc) and V(oc), respectively. Moreover, we discussed the effect of Al-doping on optical band-gap of the samples and the transfer of electron.

Effect of Mixed Transplantation of Autologous and Allogeneic Microskin Grafts on Wound Healing in a Rat Model of Acute Skin Defect

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24465646

The treatment of extensive thermal injuries with insufficient autologous skin remains a great challenge to burn surgeons. In this study, we investigated the influence of the ratio of autologous and allogeneic tissue in mixed microskin grafts on wound healing in order to develop an effective method for using limited donor skin to cover a large open wound. Four different mixtures were tested: autologous microskin at an area expansion ratio of 10∶1 with allogeneic microskin at an area expansion ratio of 10∶1 or 10∶3 and autologous microskin at an expansion ratio of 20∶1 with allogeneic microskin at an expansion ratio of 20∶3 or 20∶6. Wound healing, wound contraction, and integrin β1 expression were measured. Mixed microskin grafting facilitated wound healing substantially. The mixture of autologous microskin at an expansion ratio of 10∶1 with the same amount of allogeneic microskin achieved the most satisfactory wound healing among the 4 tested mixtures. Histological examination revealed the presence of obviously thickened epidermis and ectopic integrin β1 expression. Keratinocytes expressing integrin β1 were scattered in the suprabasal layer. Higher levels of integrin β1 expression were associated with faster wound healing, implying that ectopic expression of integrin β1 in keratinocytes may play a pivotal role in wound healing. In conclusion, this study proves that this new skin grafting technique may improve wound healing.

Association Between Kidney Function and Framingham Global Cardiovascular Disease Risk Score: a Chinese Longitudinal Study

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24465883

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is generally considered an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD) development, but rates in individuals with estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) >60 ml/min/1.73 m(2) are uncertain. The Framingham global CVD risk score (FRS) equation is a widely accepted tool used to predict CVD risk in the general population. The purpose of the present study was to examine whether an association exists between eGFR and FRS in a Chinese population with no CKD or CVD.

Evaluation of Electromechanical Coupling Parameters of Piezoelectric Materials by Using Piezoelectric Cantilever with Coplanar Electrode Structure in Quasi-stasis

IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24474142

Based on Timoshenko beam theory, a principle model is proposed to establish the relationship between electric charge and excitation acceleration, and in quasi-stasis we apply the direct piezoelectric effect of multilayer cantilever with coplanar electrode structure to evaluate the piezoelectric strain coefficient d15 and electromechanical coupling coefficient k15. They are measured as 678 pC/N and 0.74 for the commercial piezoelectric ceramic lead zirconate titanate (PZT-51) bulk specimen and 656 pC/N and 0.63 for the lead magnesium niobate (PMN) bulk specimen, and they are in agreement with the calibration and simulation values. The maximum of relative errors is less than 4.2%, so the proposed method is reliable and convenient.

D-galactose Induces a Mitochondrial Complex I Deficiency in Mouse Skeletal Muscle: Potential Benefits of Nutrient Combination in Ameliorating Muscle Impairment

Journal of Medicinal Food. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24476218

Accumulating research has shown that chronic D-galactose (D-gal) exposure induces symptoms similar to natural aging in animals. Therefore, rodents chronically exposed to D-gal are increasingly used as a model for aging and delay-of-aging pharmacological research. Mitochondrial dysfunction is thought to play a vital role in aging and age-related diseases; however, whether mitochondrial dysfunction plays a significant role in mice exposed to D-gal remains unknown. In the present study, we investigated cognitive dysfunction, locomotor activity, and mitochondrial dysfunction involved in D-gal exposure in mice. We found that D-gal exposure (125 mg/kg/day, 8 weeks) resulted in a serious impairment in grip strength in mice, whereas spatial memory and locomotor coordination remained intact. Interestingly, muscular mitochondrial complex I deficiency occurred in the skeletal muscle of mice exposed to D-gal. Mitochondrial ultrastructure abnormality was implicated as a contributing factor in D-gal-induced muscular impairment. Moreover, three combinations (A, B, and C) of nutrients applied in this study effectively reversed D-gal-induced muscular impairment. Nutrient formulas B and C were especially effective in reversing complex I dysfunction in both skeletal muscle and heart muscle. These findings suggest the following: (1) chronic exposure to D-gal first results in specific muscular impairment in mice, rather than causing general, premature aging; (2) poor skeletal muscle strength induced by D-gal might be due to the mitochondrial dysfunction caused by complex I deficiency; and (3) the nutrient complexes applied in the study attenuated the skeletal muscle impairment, most likely by improving mitochondrial function.

Atorvastatin Protects Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells From TGF-β1-Stimulated Calcification by Inducing Autophagy Via Suppression of the β-Catenin Pathway

Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry : International Journal of Experimental Cellular Physiology, Biochemistry, and Pharmacology. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24481040

Background: Arterial calcification is a major event in the progression of atherosclerosis. It is reported that statins exhibit various protective effects against vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) inflammation and proliferation in cardiovascular remodeling. Although statins counteract atherosclerosis, the molecular mechanisms of statins on the calcium release from VSMCs have not been clearly elucidated. Methods: Calcium content of VSMCs was measured using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The expression of proteins involved in cellular transdifferentiation was analyzed by western blot. Cell autophagy was measured by fluorescence microscopic analysis for acridine orange staining and transmission electron microscopy analysis. The autophagic inhibitors (3-MA, chloroquine, NH4Cl and bafilomycin A1) and β-catenin inhibitor JW74 were used to assess the effects of atorvastatin on autophagy and the involvement of β-catenin on cell calcification respectively. Furthermore, cell transfection was performed to overexpress β-catenin. Results: In VSMCs, atorvastatin significantly suppressed transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1)-stimulated calcification, accompanied by the induction of autophagy. Downregulation of autophagy with autophagic inhibitors significantly suppressed the inhibitory effect of atorvastatin on cell calcification. Moreover, the beneficial effect of atorvastatin on calcification and autophagy was reversed by β-catenin overexpression. Conversely, JW74 supplement enhanced this effect. Conclusion: These data demonstrated that atorvastatin protect VSMC from TGF-β1-stimulated calcification by inducing autophagy through suppression of the β-catenin pathway, identifying autophagy induction might be a therapeutic strategy for use in vascular calcification. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.

FH535 Inhibits the Proliferation of HepG2 Cells Via Downregulation of the Wnt/β-catenin Signaling Pathway

Molecular Medicine Reports. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24482011

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a primary cancer of the liver. Target therapy may improve prognosis of HCC. In the present study, we evaluated the inhibition of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway as a potential therapeutic approach. HepG2 cells were treated with the β-catenin inhibitor FH535. β-catenin protein expression was semi-quantitatively assessed using western blot analysis. Cell proliferation was examined with a 3‑(4,5-dimethyl-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H-tetrazolium salt (MTS) assay. The mRNA expression of nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) was detected by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. The Griess assay was used to determine nitric oxide (NO) concentration. FH535 inhibited the proliferation of HepG2 cells and decreased β-catenin protein expression. mRNA expression of iNOS, a target gene of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway, was decreased in FH535‑treated HepG2 cells compared to the control group. NO production was also reduced by FH535. In conclusion, the β-catenin inhibitor FH535 may inhibit HCC cell proliferation via downregulation of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway. Thus, targeting this pathway may be useful in HCC therapy.

Green Tea Polyphenols Protect Against Okadaic Acid-induced Acute Learning and Memory Impairments in Rats

Nutrition (Burbank, Los Angeles County, Calif.). Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24484683

Green tea polyphenols (GTPs) are now being considered possible protective agents in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). Previous studies suggested that GTPs could inhibit amyloid fibril formation and protect neurons from toxicity induced by β-amyloid. However, whether GTPs can ameliorate learning and memory impairments and also reduce tau hyperphosphorylation induced by okadaic acid (OA) in rats remains unclear. The aim of this study was to determine if GTPs have neuroprotection against OA-induced neurotoxicity.

Spatio-temporal Variations of Carbon Dioxide and Its Gross Emission Regulated by Artificial Operation in a Typical Hydropower Reservoir in China

Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24488326

Supersaturation and excess emission of greenhouse gases in freshwater reservoirs have received a great deal of attention in recent years. Although impoundment of reservoirs has been shown to contribute to the net emission of greenhouse gases, reservoir age, geographical distribution, submerged soil type and artificial regulation also have a great impact on their emissions. To examine how large scale reservoir operation impact the water column CO2 and its air-water interface flux, a field study was conducted in 2010 to evaluate potential ecological processes that regulate the partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2) in the water column in the Pengxi River backwater area (PBA), a typical tributary in the Three Gorges Reservoir, China. Measurements of total alkalinity (TA), pH and water temperature were applied to compute the pCO2. And this approach was also validated by calculation of pCO2 from the dissolved inorganic carbon data of samples. Partial least squares (PLS) regression was used to determine how the dynamics of the water pCO2 were related to the available variables. The estimated pCO2 in our sample ranged from 26 to 4,087 μatm in the surface water. During low water operation from July to early September, there was an obvious pCO2 stratification, and pCO2 in the surface was almost unsaturated. This phenomenon was also observed in the spring bloom during discharge period. Conversely, there was no significant pCO2 stratification and the entire water column was supersaturated during high water operation from November to the following February. Significant correlation was observed between the magnitude of pCO2, DO and chlorophyll a, suggesting that phytoplankton dynamics regulate pCO2 in the PBA. The average areal rate of CO2 emissions from the Pengxi River ranged from 18.06 to 48.09 mmol m(-2) day(-1), with an estimated gross CO2 emission from the water surface of 14-37 t day(-1) in this area in 2010. Photosynthesis and respiration rates by phytoplankton might be the dominant processes that regulated pCO2 in the water column. We conclude that pCO2 values in the surface water of Pengxi River could be regarded as potential sources of CO2 to the atmosphere were smaller or similar to those that have been reported for many other reservoirs to date.

Agreement of Corneal Epithelial Profiles Produced by Automated Segmentation of SD-OCT Images Having Different Optical Resolutions

Eye & Contact Lens. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24492238

Using a custom-developed segmentation algorithm, agreement of corneal epithelial thickness profile measurements between two spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) systems was assessed.

Association Between the Lipoprotein-Associated Phospholipase A2 Activity and the Progression of Subclinical Atherosclerosis

Journal of Atherosclerosis and Thrombosis. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24492522

Aim: The lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2(Lp-PLA2) level has been shown to be associated with the risk of clinical cardiovascular events. We aimed to investigate whether Lp-PLA2 is associated with the progression of subclinical atherosclerosis in the general population. Methods: The degree of carotid plaque and the maximal intima-media thickness(IMT) were measured twice over a 5-year interval in 913 participants 45 to 74 years of age at baseline in a cohort study. The associations between the plasma Lp-PLA2 activity and the progression of carotid plaque and changes in the IMT level were assessed according to sex after adjusting for traditional risk factors and the high-sensitivity C-reactive protein(hsCRP) level. Results: During the 5-year follow-up period, the progression of plaque was observed in 58.5% of men and 48.3% of women. The median maximal IMT level increased by 0.12 mm in men and 0.09 mm in women per year. The progression of plaque and changes in the IMT level increased according to the quartile of the Lp-PLA2 activity in men(p<0.05 for trend), but not women. Following adjustment for traditional risk factors and the hsCRP level, the odds ratio for plaque progression associated with an increase in the Lp-PLA2 activity of one standard deviation was 1.28(95% CI=1.09-1.49, p=0.043) in men and 0.92(95% CI=0.78-1.08, p=0.273) in women. The regression coefficient for IMT progression was 0.003(p=0.004) in men and -0.001(p=0.166) in women after adjusting for the other factors. Conclusions: The Lp-PLA2 level is associated with the progression of subclinical atherosclerosis in men. Lp-PLA2 may play an important role in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis and be a potential target for the early prevention of cardiovascular disease.

Comprehensive Mapping of Protein N-glycosylation in Human Liver by Combining Hydrophilic Interaction Chromatography and Hydrazide Chemistry

Journal of Proteome Research. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24495048

Although glycoproteomics is greatly developed in recent years, our knowledge about N-glycoproteome of human tissues is still very limited. In this study, we comprehensively mapped the N-glycosylation sites of human liver by combining click maltose-hydrophilic interaction chromatography (HILIC) and the improved hydrazide chemistry. The specificity could be as high as 90% for hydrazide chemistry and 80% for HILIC. Altogether, we identified 14,480 N-glycopeptides matched with N-!P-[S|T|C] sequence motif from human liver, corresponding to 2210 N-glycoproteins and 4783 N-glycosylation sites. These N-glycoproteins are widely involved into different types of biological processes, such as hepatic stellate cell activation and acute phase response of human liver, which all highly associate with the progression of liver diseases. Moreover, the exact N-glycosylation sites of some key-regulating proteins within different human liver physiological processes were also obtained, such as E-cadherin, transforming growth factor beta receptor and 29 members of G protein coupled receptors family.

A Pair of New Antioxidant Phenolic Acid Stereoisomers Isolated from Danshen Injection (lyophilized Powder)

Molecules (Basel, Switzerland). 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24500008

A pair of new phenolic acid stereoisomers, (R)-norsalvianolic acid L (1) and (S)-norsalvianolic acid L (2), was isolated from the Danshen Injection (lyophilized powder). The structural elucidation and stereochemistry determination were achieved by spectroscopic and chemical methods including 1D, 2D NMR (1H-1H COSY, HSQC and HMBC) and circular dichroism experiments. Their antioxidant activities were assessed by the DPPH· and ABTS·+ scavenging methods in vitro with microplate assay. The IC50 values of 1 were 6.9 and 9.7 μM respectively, which was close to the control salvianolic acid B (7.8 and 7.1 μM respectively), while the IC50 values of isomer 2 were 27.1 and 25.3 μM, respectively.

Depiction of Achilles Tendon Microstructure in Vivo Using High-resolution 3-dimensional Ultrashort Echo-time Magnetic Resonance Imaging at 7 T

Investigative Radiology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24500089

The objective of this study was to demonstrate the feasibility of depicting the internal structure of the Achilles tendon in vivo using high-resolution 3-dimensional ultrashort echo-time (UTE) magnetic resonance imaging at 7 T.

Rat Cortex and Hippocampus-derived Soluble Factors for the Induction of Adipose-derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells into Neuron-like Cells

Cell Biology International. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24500988

To simulate brain microenvironment, adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (AMSC) were induced to differentiate to neuronal-like cells in rat cortex and hippocampus medium (Cox + Hip). First, isolated AMSC were characterized by flow cytometer and the capacity of adipogenesis and osteogenesis. After induction in rat cortex and hippocampus conditioned medium, the cell morphological change was examined and neural marker proteins (β-Ш-Tubulin, NSE, Nissl body) expression was detected by immunofluorescence staining. A variety of synaptic marker proteins, including GAP43, SHANK2, SHANK3 and Bassoon body, were detected. ELISA was used to measure brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and nerve growth factor (NGF) secretion at different time-points. AMSCs positively expressed CD13, CD44 and CD90 and could differentiate into osteoblasts or adipocytes. After induction in Cox + Hip medium for 14 days, cells had a typical neuronal perikaryal appearance, which was suggestive of neuronal differentiation. After 14 days of Cox + Hip treatment, the percentage of cells expressing β-Ⅲ-Tubulin, NSE and Nissl was 53.9 ± 0.8%, 51.3 ± 1.7% and 16.4 ± 2.1%, respectively. Expression of GAP43, SHANK2, SHANK3 and Bassoon body was detected, indicating synapse formation after treatment in Cox + Hip medium. Differentiated AMSCs secreted neurotrophic factors NGF and BDNF. Thus rat cortex and hippocampus-derived soluble factors can induce AMSCs to a neuronal-like phenotype, suggesting that AMSCs have a dual role in supplementing newborn neurons and secreting neurotrophic factors, and therefore could be help as a potential treatment for nervous system diseases.

A Study on Small-world Brain Functional Networks Altered by Postherpetic Neuralgia

Magnetic Resonance Imaging. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24512793

Understanding the effect of postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) pain on brain activity is important for clinical strategies. This is the first study, to our knowledge, to relate PHN pain to small-world properties of brain functional networks. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to construct functional brain networks of the subjects during the resting state. Sixteen patients with PHN pain and 16 (8 males, 8 females for both groups) age-matched controls were studied. The PHN patients exhibited decreased local efficiency along with non-significant changes of global efficiency in comparison with the healthy controls. Moreover, regional nodal efficiency was found to be significantly affected by PHN pain in the areas related to sense (postcentral gyrus, inferior parietal gyrus and thalamus), memory/affective processes (parahippocampal gyrus) and emotional activities (putamen). Significant correlation (p<0.05) was also found between the nodal efficiency of putamen and pain intensity in PHN patients. Our results suggest that PHN modulates the local efficiency, and the small-world properties of brain networks may have potentials to objectively evaluate pain information in clinic.

Metalloenzyme Design and Engineering Through Strategic Modifications of Native Protein Scaffolds

Current Opinion in Chemical Biology. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24513641

Metalloenzymes are among the major targets of protein design and engineering efforts aimed at attaining novel and efficient catalysis for biochemical transformation and biomedical applications, due to the diversity of functions imparted by the metallo-cofactors along with the versatility of the protein environment. Naturally evolved protein scaffolds can often serve as robust foundations for sustaining artificial active sites constructed by rational design, directed evolution, or a combination of the two strategies. Accumulated knowledge of structure-function relationship and advancement of tools such as computational algorithms and unnatural amino acids incorporation all contribute to the design of better metalloenzymes with catalytic properties approaching the needs of practical applications.

Evidence for Association of Mitochondrial Metabolism Alteration with Lipid Accumulation in Aging Rats

Experimental Gerontology. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24518876

Adipogenesis and lipid accumulation during aging have a great impact on the aging process and the pathogenesis of chronic, age-related diseases. However, little is known about the age-related molecular changes in lipid accumulation and the mechanisms underlying them. Here, using 5-month- and 25-month-old rats (young and old, respectively), we found that epididymal fat is the only tissue to accumulate during aging. By testing tissues rich with mitochondria in old and young animals, we found that the old animals had elevated levels of triglycerides in their muscle, heart and liver tissues but not in their kidneys, while, the mRNA level of fatty acid synthase remained unchanged among the four tissues. Regarding lipid catabolism, we determined that the activities of mitochondrial ETC. complexes changed in aged rats (muscle: decreased complex I and V activities; heart: decreased complex I activity; liver: increased complex I and III activities; kidney: decreased complex I and increased complex II activities), while changes in mitochondrial content were not observed in the muscle, heart nor in the liver tissue except increased complex IV and V subunits in aged kidneys. Furthermore, decreased mitochondrial fusion marker Mfn2 and decreased PGC-1α level were observed in the aged muscle, heart and liver but remained unchanged in the kidneys. Down-regulation of Mfn2 with siRNA in 293T cells induced significant mitochondrial dysfunction including decreased oxygen consumption, decreased ATP production, and increased ROS production, followed by increased triglyceride content suggesting a contributing role of decreased mitochondrial fusion to lipid deposit. Meanwhile, judging from autophagy marker p62/SQSTM1 and LC3-II, autophagy was suppressed in the aged muscle, heart and liver but remained unchanged in the kidneys. Taken together, these data suggest that reduction in PGC-1α expression and disruption of mitochondrial dynamics and autophagy might contribute to lipid accumulation during aging.

Synthesis of Ultra-stable Fluorescent Carbon Dots from Polyvinylpyrrolidone and Their Application in the Detection of Hydroxyl Radicals

Chemistry, an Asian Journal. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24519889

Highly biocompatible and highly photostable fluorescent carbon dots (C dots) were obtained through a simple and nontoxic one-pot hydrothermal method. Polyvinylpyrrolidone, a common and low-cost biocompatibility reagent, was used as the only carbon source for the first time. The resulting water-soluble C dots showed a quantum yield of up to 23.58% with low cytotoxicity, favorable photoluminescent properties, and good photostability. Importantly, the fluorescence intensities of the C dots were quite stable in high-salt conditions and over a broad pH range (3.0-10.5). The as-prepared C dots have been demonstrated to be an excellent probe for hydroxyl radicals sensing based on the fluorescence quenching with great sensitivity and specificity. This opens up a new application field for C dots.

Establishment of an Inflamed Animal Model of Diabetic Nephropathy

International Journal of Biological Sciences. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24520213

Inflammatory stress plays a crucial role in the progression of diabetic nephropathy (DN). This study aimed to establish a novel inflamed animal model of DN and to evaluate its significance in DN.

Downregulation of Rad51 Participates in OTA-induced DNA Double-strand Breaks in GES-1 Cells in Vitro

Toxicology Letters. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24525463

Ochratoxin A (OTA), a mycotoxin produced by ubiquitous Aspergilli, is carcinogenic, teratogenic, and nephrotoxic in both humans and animals. Our previous study found that OTA induced DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) and resulted in G2 phase arrest in human gastric epithelium immortalized (GES-1) cells. DSBs can cause genomic instability, mutations, and neoplastic transformations, and improper repair of DSBs may lead to the development of cancer. Rad51 is a key protein in the homologous recombination (HR) pathway of DSBs repair. The roles of Rad51 in the repair of DNA damage vary in response to different types of cytotoxic agents. The effect of OTA on Rad51 expression and its putative role in the OTA-induced DSBs in GES-1 cells are still not clear enough. The aim of the current study is to elucidate the role of Rad51 in OTA-induced DSBs in GES-1 cells. The results showed that OTA treatment decreased Rad51 expression in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Specific downregulation of Rad51 by siRNA induced DSBs and G2 phase arrest. Rad51 overexpression by transfection with a Rad51-expressing plasmid partly rescued the DSBs and G2 phase arrest in OTA-treated cells. The findings indicate that downregulation of Rad51 contributes to OTA-induced DNA damage in GES-1 cells. Knockdown of p53 with siRNA for 48h effectively reversed the downregulation of Rad51, and decreased the OTA-induced DSBs in GES-1 cells. In addition, the downregulation of Rad51 induced by OTA could be significantly attenuated with specific ERK inhibitor PD98059 or specific p38 MAPK inhibitor SB203580 pre-treatment in GES-1 cells. Thus, the results suggest that downregulation of Rad51 participates in OTA-induced DNA double-strand breaks in GES-1 cells in vitro. And p53, ERK and p38 signaling pathways are all involved in the process.

Resveratrol Induces Human K562 Cell Apoptosis, Erythroid Differentiation, and Autophagy

Tumour Biology : the Journal of the International Society for Oncodevelopmental Biology and Medicine. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24526417

Resveratrol (Res) is a naturally occurring phytoalexin with apoptotic and inducing-glob effects in leukemic cells, but the potential induction of erythroid differentiation in cells is not fully understood. Here, we investigated the effects of Res on human erythro-megakaryoblastic leukemia cell line K562. Among the treated cells, proliferation was inhibited and the occurrence of cell apoptosis and cell death were detected. Erythroid differentiation assay was explored, and we found that Res could increase the expression of glycophorin A (GPA), HBA1, HBB, and γ-globin genes and enforced the expression of GPA, CD71, and Band3 proteins. Res also induced K562 cell autophagy when the concentration of Res was increased up to 50 or 100 μM. Our findings suggested that Res possesses the potency not only inducing apoptosis but also inducing erythroid differentiation and autophagy in K562 cells. These results provide that Res may be a therapeutic candidate for chronic myelogenous leukemia treatment.

LC3A-positive "stone-like" Structures Predict an Adverse Prognosis of Gastric Cancer

Anatomical Record (Hoboken, N.J. : 2007). Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24532538

Microtubule-associated protein light chain 3 (LC3A) is a reliable marker of autophagy that displays three distinct patterns of immunohistochemical staining in solid tumors: diffuse cytoplasmic staining, juxtanuclear staining, and staining of "stone-like" structures. These three patterns have a different prognostic significance in many solid tumors, but little is known about their influence in gastric cancer (GC). This study was a retrospective analysis of 188 GC patients from stages I to IV. The pattern of LC3A expression was examined in tumor and nontumor tissues by immunohistochemistry. Then, the association between the pattern of LC3A expression in GC and the prognosis was investigated by Kaplan-Meier analysis and the Cox proportional hazards model. Two distinct patterns of LC3A immunostaining (diffuse cytoplasmic expression and "stone-like" structures) were observed in GC tissues. LC3A-positive "stone-like" structures were found only in the tumors, and the number of such structures was correlated with both the tumor type and tumor stage. In addition, a high number of LC3A-positive "stone-like" structures was closely associated with an increased risk of recurrence after radical resection of stages I-III cancer (P < 0.001; HR = 0.205) and was associated with a lower overall survival rate for stage IV cancer (P < 0.001; HR = 0.364). Taken together, our data demonstrate that LC3A-positive "stone-like" structures can be used as an independent biomarker for an adverse prognosis of GC, suggesting that "stone-like" structures are correlated with the malignancy of this disease.

Effects of Vitexin-2″-O-rhamnoside and Vitexin-4″-O-glucoside on Growth and Oxidative Stress-induced Cell Apoptosis of Human Adipose-derived Stem Cells

The Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24533889

Vitexin-2″-O-rhamnoside (VOR) and vitexin-4″-O-glucoside (VOG) are the two main flavonoid glycosides of the leaves of Cratagus pinnatifida Bge. var. major N. E. Br. that has been widely used for the treatment of cardiovascular system diseases. In this study, we simultaneously investigated the influence of VOR and VOG on human adipose-derived stem cells (hADSCs) injury induced by hydrogen peroxide (H2 O2 ) to further characterize their anti-oxidative and anti-apoptotic activity.

[Coexisting Rheumatoid Arthritis and Ankylosing Spondylitis: 3 Cases Report]

Beijing Da Xue Xue Bao. Yi Xue Ban = Journal of Peking University. Health Sciences. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24535368

To understand the clinical profiles of coexisting rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS).

Pod Shattering Resistance Associated with Domestication is Mediated by a NAC Gene in Soybean

Nature Communications. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24549030

Loss of seed dispersal is a key agronomical trait targeted by ancient human selection and has been regarded as a milestone of crop domestication. In this study, in the legume crop soybean Glycine max (L.) Merr. which provides vegetable oils and proteins for humans, we show that the key cellular feature of the shattering-resistant trait lies in the excessively lignified fibre cap cells (FCC) with the abscission layer unchanged in the pod ventral suture. We demonstrate that a NAC (NAM, ATAF1/2 and CUC2) gene shattering1-5 (SHAT1-5) functionally activates secondary wall biosynthesis and promotes the significant thickening of FCC secondary walls by expression at 15-fold the level of the wild allele, which is attributed to functional disruption of the upstream repressor. We show that strong artificial selection of SHAT1-5 has caused a severe selective sweep across ~ 116 kb on chromosome 16. This locus and regulation mechanism could be applicable to legume crop improvement.

Discovery of a Potent, Covalent BTK Inhibitor for B-Cell Lymphoma

ACS Chemical Biology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24556163

BTK is a member of the TEC family of non-receptor tyrosine kinases whose deregulation has been implicated in a variety of B-cell-related diseases. We have used structure-based drug design in conjunction with kinome profiling and cellular assays to develop a potent, selective, and irreversible BTK kinase inhibitor, QL47, which covalently modifies Cys481. QL47 inhibits BTK kinase activity with an IC50 of 7 nM, inhibits autophosphorylation of BTK on Tyr223 in cells with an EC50 of 475 nM, and inhibits phosphorylation of a downstream effector PLCγ2 (Tyr759) with an EC50 of 318 nM. In Ramos cells QL47 induces a G1 cell cycle arrest that is associated with pronounced degradation of BTK protein. QL47 inhibits the proliferation of B-cell lymphoma cancer cell lines at submicromolar concentrations.

Surface Force Measurements at Kaolinite Edge Surfaces Using Atomic Force Microscopy

Journal of Colloid and Interface Science. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24559697

Fundamental results obtained from research on the properties of the edge surfaces of kaolinite particles (~500 nm) are reported. Of particular significance was the development of the experimental protocol. Well-ordered kaolinite edge surfaces were prepared as an epoxy resin sandwich structure having layered kaolinite particles in the center of the epoxy resin sandwich. Images of the sectioned kaolinite edge surfaces were examined by atomic force microscopy (AFM), and the average thickness of kaolinite particles in this study was determined to be 38.3 nm±11.7 nm. Furthermore, the surface charge of the kaolinite edge surfaces was evaluated with a super sharp Si tip. The point of zero charge (PZC) of the kaolinite edge surface was determined to be below pH 4, in contrast to the traditional view that the edge surfaces of kaolinite particles may carry a positive charge at pH 4. This lower PZC of the kaolinite edge surface was attributed to the lack of isomorphous substitution in the silica tetrahedral layer when compared to the PZC for the muscovite edge surface. Our results are consistent with the particle aggregation and flotation behavior of kaolinite, and should provide the basis for improved flotation strategies leading to the efficient recovery and utilization of mineral and energy resources.

Infection with Respiratory Syncytial Virus Influences FasL-mediated Apoptosis of Pulmonary γδ T Cells in a Murine Model of Allergen Sensitization

The Journal of Asthma : Official Journal of the Association for the Care of Asthma. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24564286

It has been reported that adoptive transfer of γδ T cells increases the cellular infiltration, especially eosinophils, in the lungs of allergic mice, suggesting that γδ T cells may play a proinflammatory role in allergic airway inflammation. Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection can decrease the number of Th2-type γδ T cells. However, the underlying mechanisms remain unknown.

Genome Sequencing of High-penicillin Producing Industrial Strain of Penicillium Chrysogenum

BMC Genomics. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24564352

Due to the importance of Penicillium chrysogenum holding in medicine, the genome of low-penicillin producing laboratorial strain Wisconsin54-1255 had been sequenced and fully annotated. Through classical mutagenesis of Wisconsin54-1255, product titers and productivities of penicillin have dramatically increased, but what underlying genome structural variations is still little known. Therefore, genome sequencing of a high-penicillin producing industrial strain is very meaningful.

Delayed-enhancement Magnetic Resonance Imaging at 3.0T Using 0.15mmol/kg of Contrast Agent for the Assessment of Chronic Myocardial Infarction

European Journal of Radiology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24565750

A recent international, multicenter, double-blinded, randomized trial shows delayed-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DE-MRI) using contrast doses of ≥0.2mmol/kg is effective in the detection and assessment of myocardial infarction (MI), and 0.1mmol/kg is not enough; intermediate doses between 0.1 and 0.2mmol/kg have not been tested. The aim of this study was to prospectively test the performance of DE-MRI using 0.15mmol/kg of contrast agent for the detection of MI.

Cell-specific Translational Profiling in Acute Kidney Injury

The Journal of Clinical Investigation. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24569379

Acute kidney injury (AKI) promotes an abrupt loss of kidney function that results in substantial morbidity and mortality. Considerable effort has gone toward identification of diagnostic biomarkers and analysis of AKI-associated molecular events; however, most studies have adopted organ-wide approaches and have not elucidated the interplay among different cell types involved in AKI pathophysiology. To better characterize AKI-associated molecular and cellular events, we developed a mouse line that enables the identification of translational profiles in specific cell types. This strategy relies on CRE recombinase-dependent activation of an EGFP-tagged L10a ribosomal protein subunit, which allows translating ribosome affinity purification (TRAP) of mRNA populations in CRE-expressing cells. Combining this mouse line with cell type-specific CRE-driver lines, we identified distinct cellular responses in an ischemia reperfusion injury (IRI) model of AKI. Twenty-four hours following IRI, distinct translational signatures were identified in the nephron, kidney interstitial cell populations, vascular endothelium, and macrophages/monocytes. Furthermore, TRAP captured known IRI-associated markers, validating this approach. Biological function annotation, canonical pathway analysis, and in situ analysis of identified response genes provided insight into cell-specific injury signatures. Our study provides a deep, cell-based view of early injury-associated molecular events in AKI and documents a versatile, genetic tool to monitor cell-specific and temporal-specific biological processes in disease modeling.

Relationship Between [corrected] Spatial Memory in Diabetic Rats and Protein Kinase Cγ, Caveolin-1 in the Hippocampus and Neuroprotective Effect of Catalpol

Chinese Medical Journal. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24571888

The mechanisms underlying diabetic encephalopathy are largely unknown, and no effective treatments are available. Catalpol has received much attention due to its numerous biological effects, especially in neuroprotective studies. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of catalpol on cognitive functions in diabetic rats and the underlying mechanisms.

[Efficacy and Safety of Combination of Sorafenib and Transarterial Chemoembolization in Treating Primary Hepatocellular Carcinoma]

Zhongguo Yi Xue Ke Xue Yuan Xue Bao. Acta Academiae Medicinae Sinicae. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24581125

To evaluate the efficacy and safety of the combination of sorafenib and transarterial chemoembolization(TACE)in the treatment of primary hepatocellular carcinoma(HCC).

Self-gated Free-breathing 3D Coronary CINE Imaging with Simultaneous Water and Fat Visualization

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24586682

The aim of this study was to develop a novel technique for acquiring 3-dimensional (3D) coronary CINE magnetic resonance images with both water and fat visualization during free breathing and without external respiratory or cardiac gating. The implemented multi-echo hybrid 3D radial balanced Steady-State Free Precession (SSFP) sequence has an efficient data acquisition and is robust against motion. The k-space center along the slice encoding direction was repeatedly acquired to derive both respiratory and cardiac self-gating signals without an increase in scan time, enabling a free-breathing acquisition. The multi-echo acquisition allowed image reconstruction with water-fat separation, providing improved visualization of the coronary artery lumen. Ten healthy subjects were imaged successfully at 1.5 T, achieving a spatial resolution of 1.0 × 1.0 × 3.0 mm(3) and scan time of about 5 minutes. The proposed imaging technique provided coronary vessel depiction comparable to that obtained with conventional breath-hold imaging and navigator gated free-breathing imaging.

The Severe Adverse Reaction to Vitamin K1 Injection is Anaphylactoid Reaction but Not Anaphylaxis

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24594861

The severe adverse reaction to vitamin K1 injection is always remarkable and is thought to result from anaphylaxis. Paradoxically, however, some patients administered vitamin K1 injection for the first time have adverse reactions. Using beagle dogs, the present study tested the hypothesis that the response to vitamin K1 is an anaphylactoid reaction. The results showed that serious anaphylaxis-like symptoms appeared in beagle dogs after the administration of vitamin K1 injection for the first time. The plasma histamine concentration increased, and blood pressure decreased sharply. After sensitization, dogs were challenged with vitamin K1 injection and displayed the same degree of symptoms as prior to sensitization. However, when the vitamin K1 injection-sensitized dogs were challenged with a vitamin K1-fat emulsion without solubilizers such asTween-80, the abnormal reactions did not occur. Furthermore, there was no significant change in the plasma immunoglobulin E concentration after vitamin K1 challenge. Following treatment with vitamin K1 injection, the release of histamine and β-hexosaminidase by rat basophilic leukemia-2H3 cells as well as the rate of apoptosis increased. The Tween-80 group displayed results similar to those observed following vitamin K1 injection in vivo. However, the dogs in the vitamin K1-fat emulsion group did not display any abnormal behavior or significant change in plasma histamine. Additionally, degranulation and apoptosis did not occur in rat basophilic leukemia-2H3 cells. Our results indicate that the adverse reaction induced by vitamin K1 injection is an anaphylactoid reaction, not anaphylaxis. Vitamin K1 injection induces the release of inflammatory factors via a non-IgE-mediated immune pathway, for which the trigger may be the solubilizer.

[A New Multi-factor Risk Score System for Predicting the Outcome After Allogenic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation]

Zhongguo Shi Yan Xue Ye Xue Za Zhi / Zhongguo Bing Li Sheng Li Xue Hui = Journal of Experimental Hematology / Chinese Association of Pathophysiology. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24598663

The aim of this study was to develop and investigate the significance of a new multi-factor risk score system to predict the outcome of patients with hematological malignancies received allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT). The impact of pre-, peri-, and post-transplant factors on the outcome including overall survival (OS), disease-free survival (DFS), relapse and transplant-related mortality (TRM) after allo-HSCT were retrospectively analyzed in 122 patients with hematological malignancies at our center. A new risk score system based on the independent risk factors was established and tested. The results showed that absolute monocyte count at day 30 after transplantation (AMC-30, ≥ 536 cells/µl) [hazard ratio (HR) = 0.313, 95% confidencial interval (CI):0.156-0.63], WT1( ≥ 1.0%) (HR = 3.268, 95% CI:1.644-6.499), pre-transplant risk grouping (HR = 1.999, 95% CI = 0.993-4.023) were independent prognostic factors of OS and DFS. Patients were divided into 3 groups based on the risk scoring system:group A (no risk factor; score 0), group B (1 risk factor; score 1) and group C (2-3 risk factors; score 2-3). OS at 5 years were 95.1% ± 3.4%, 62.9% ± 6.6% and 36.1% ± 9.6%, respectively (P < 0.0001). DFS at 5 years were 92.6% ± 4.9%, 60.4% ± 6.8% and 15.4% ± 7.1%, respectively (P < 0.0001). The akaike information criterion(AIC) value of the new score system for OS was 331, less than those of AMC-30, WT1, and pre-transplant risk group (346, 343, 346), AIC value for DFS and relapse were 378 and 231, both less than the three single elements(417, 397, 411 and 268, 238, 257). It is concluded that the risk scoring system based on AMC-30, WT1, pre-transplant risk grouping is more highly predictive for clinical outcomes of allo-HSCT than any one of the three single elements.

P62/SQSTM1 Accumulation in Squamous Cell Carcinoma of Head and Neck Predicts Sensitivity to Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase Pathway Inhibitors

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24599075

The phosphoinositol-3 kinase (PI3K) pathway is highly dysregulated in squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN). While inhibitors of the PI3K/AKT pathway are being developed in cancer, their efficacy does not appear to be related to the presence of mutations or amplification in pathway genes. The PI3K pathway is a major regulator of macro-autophagy, an evolutionarily conserved catabolic process that degrades cellular materials to promote cellular homeostasis and survival under stress. Employing a panel of SCCHN cell lines, we observed a significant correlation between the activity of PI3K/AKT inhibitors and their ability to induce autophagy. More specifically, resistance to these inhibitors was associated with accumulation of p62/SQSTM1, a pleotropic protein that is consumed during autophagy, while loss of autophagy was, for the first time, found to be due to silencing of an essential autophagy gene, ATG7. Moreover, modulating ATG7 and p62/SQSTM1 could regulate sensitivity to PI3K/AKT inhibitors, underscoring a mechanistic link between autophagy and drug sensitivity. Analysis of human tissues revealed progressive accumulation of p62/SQSTM1 in a significant proportion of cancer samples compared to normal tissue, suggesting that defective autophagy has relevance to SCCHN. These findings are further validated by analysis of TCGA data confirming homozygous deletion and mRNA down-regulation of ATG7 in 10.0% of SCCHN samples. Taken together, these data indicate that p62/SQSTM1 levels modulate sensitivity to PI3K/AKT inhibitors; cancers vary in their capacity to undergo autophagy through epigenetic modification and, when deficient, accumulate p62/SQSTM1; and expression of autophagy-related proteins may serve as markers for resistance to PI3K/AKT inhibitors in SCCHN.

Interactions Between N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive Factor and GluR2 in the Nucleus Accumbens Contribute to the Expression of Locomotor Sensitization to Cocaine

The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24599450

Many studies have reported a withdrawal-dependent increase in synaptic AMPA receptor (AMPAR) levels in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) of cocaine-sensitized rats; however, the exact relationship between the expression of sensitization and altered AMPAR surface expression in the NAc has not yet been investigated. We demonstrated that the expression of behavioral sensitization was negatively controlled by N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor (NSF)-GluR2 interactions in the NAc. The upregulation of NSF-GluR2 interactions, which may be resulted by the increase in NSF S-nitrosylation after withdrawal from cocaine, was associated with the changes in the expression of behavioral sensitization. Disruption of NSF-GluR2 interactions in the NAc with a specific peptide, TAT-pep-R845A, increased the locomotor response of rats to cocaine by decreasing GluR2 surface insertion. In contrast, prevention of GluR2-containing AMPARs removal from synapses with Pep2-EVKI attenuated the expression of behavioral sensitization. Similarly, treatment with the nitric oxide donor, S-Nitroso-N-acetyl-DL-penicillamine (SNAP), attenuated the expression of locomotor sensitization by promoting GluR2 surface expression. This effect was mediated by the binding of S-nitrosylated NSF to GluR2, which promoted the surface expression of AMPARs. Noticeably, exogenous injection of SNAP into NAc also attenuated the expression of cocaine-induced conditioned place preference. Thus, these results indicate that increased NSF-GluR2 interactions in the NAc after withdrawal from cocaine attenuated the expression of behavioral sensitization and serves as a negative regulatory mechanism in drug-exposed individuals.

Association of PKCζ Expression with Clinicopathological Characteristics of Breast Cancer

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24603690

The protein kinase C (PKC) family has been functionally linked to cancer. It has been suggested that atypical PKCs contribute to cell proliferation and cancer progression. With respect to breast cancer, PKCζ has been found to play a key role in intracellular transduction of mitogenic and apoptotic signals using mammary cell lines. However, little is known about its function in vivo. Here we examined the correlation between PKCζ protein levels and important clinicopathologic factors in breast cancer using patient samples. To conduct the study, 30 invasive ductal carcinoma cases and their paired normal tissues were used for tissue microarray analysis (TMA) and 16 were used for western blot analysis. In addition, the correlation between PKCζ expression levels and clinicopathologic characteristics was determined in 176 cases with relevant clinical data. Finally, the correlation between PKCζ and epithelial growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) expressions was determined using three breast cancer cell lines by western blot analysis. Both TMA and western blot results showed that PKCζ protein was highly expressed in primary tumors but not in paired normal tissue. The correlation study indicated that high PKCζ levels were associated with premenopausal patients (p = 0.019) and worse prognostic factors, such as advanced clinical stage, more lymph node involvement and larger tumor size. Both disease-free survival and overall survival rates were lower in the high PKCζ group than those in the low PKCζ group. No correlation was observed between PKCζ levels and age, histological grade, or estrogen or progesterone receptor expression status. A positive correlation between PKCζ and HER2 levels was observed in both tumor samples and cell lines. Our observations link PKCζ expression with factors pointing to worse prognosis, higher HER2 levels and a lower survival rate. This suggests that PKCζ protein levels may serve as a prognostic marker of breast cancer.

Effect of TLR4 and B7-H1 on Immune Escape of Urothelial Bladder Cancer and Its Clinical Significance

Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention : APJCP. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24606459

Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and B7-H1, both normally expressed restricted to immune cells, are found to be aberrantly expressed in a majority of human tumors and may play important roles in regulation of tumor immunity. It has been shown that urothelial bladder cancer (UBC) patients can manifest tumoral immune escape which may be a potential critical factor in tumor pathogenesis and progression. However, so far, the mechanisms of UBC-related immune escape have not been clarified. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of TLR4 and B7-H1 on immune escape of UBC.

Impacts of Changing Cropping Pattern on Virtual Water Flows Related to Crops Transfer: a Case Study for the Hetao Irrigation District, China

Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24615675

Analysis of cropping patterns is a prerequisite for their optimisation, and evaluation of virtual water flows could shed new light on water resources management. This study is intended to explore the effects of cropping pattern changes between 1960 and 2008 on virtual water flows related to crops transfer in the Hetao irrigation district, China.

Acarbose Compared with Metformin As Initial Therapy in Patients with Newly Diagnosed Type 2 Diabetes: an Open-label, Non-inferiority Randomised Trial

The Lancet. Diabetes & Endocrinology. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24622668

Metformin is the only first-line oral hypoglycaemic drug for type 2 diabetes recommended by international guidelines with proven efficacy, safety, and cost-effectiveness. However, little information exists about its use in Asian populations. We aimed to ascertain the effectiveness of the α-glucosidase inhibitor acarbose, extensively adopted in China, compared with metformin as the alternative initial therapy for newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes.

Deficiency of MTMR14 Promotes Autophagy and Proliferation of Mouse Embryonic Fibroblasts

Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24623267

MTMR14 is a phosphoinositide phosphatase, which has been reported to regulate the maintenance of normal muscle performance and aging in mice. However, the function of MTMR14 in mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) remains largely unknown. In this study, we established MTMR14 WT and KO MEFs and showed that MTMR14 is localized in whole MEFs, with higher level in nucleus and lower in cytoplasm, partially overlapping with mitochondrial. Compared with the WT control, MTMR14 KO MEFs exhibit a higher proliferation rate and more obvious autophagy. Furthermore, we demonstrate that KO of MTMR14 significantly decreased the mRNA levels of p21 and p27, while increased those of cyclinD and cyclinE. Upon (insulin-like growth factor) IGF stimulation, we also found KO of MTMR14 enhanced the phosphorylation levels of AKT and ERK in MEFs. Based on these findings, we propose that defect of MTMR14 promotes autophagy and cell proliferation in MEFs.

Numerical Simulations on Conformable Laser-induced Interstitial Thermotherapy Through Combined Use of Multi-beam Heating and Biodegradable Nanoparticles

Lasers in Medical Science. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24627283

Clinically, precisely heating and thus completely ablating diseased tumor tissue through laser beam is still facing many technical challenges. In this study, numerical simulation of a conformal heating modality based on multi-beam laser along with biodegradable magnesium nanoparticles (Mg-NPs) was put forward to treat liver tumor with large size or irregular shape. Further, a Gaussian-like distribution was proposed to investigate the influence of Mg-NP deposition on the nanoenhanced laser-induced interstitial thermotherapy (LITT). A temperature feedback system was adopted to control the temperature range to avoid overheating. To preliminarily validate the heating enhancement induced by the applied multi-beam laser and Mg-NPs, a conceptual experiment was performed. Both theoretical simulation and experimental measurements demonstrated that multi-beam laser with Mg-NPs could improve efficiency in the conformal heating of tumors with irregular shape or large size. In addition, the distribution and content of Mg-NPs produced significant impact on thermotherapy: (1) The adjustable parameter σ in the Gaussian-like distribution could reflect various practical situations and diffusivities of Mg-NPs; (2) under the premise of the same concentration of Mg-NPs and short time to heat a small-sized target, the whole liver tumor containing Mg-NPs could not improve the efficiency as the nanoparticles limited the photons to be absorbed only around the fibers, while liver tumor partially containing Mg-NPs could improve the thermotherapy efficiency up to 20 %; and (3) the addition of Mg-NPs was rather beneficial for realizing a conformal heating as the residual thermal energy was much less than that without Mg-NPs. This study suggests a feasible and promising modality for planning a high-performance LITT in future clinics.

Broad Specific Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent Assay for Determination of Residual Phenothiazine Drugs in Swine Tissues

Analytical Biochemistry. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24631517

In this study, a novel generic hapten of phenothiazine drugs was synthesized by derivatization of 2-chlorophenothiazine with sodium bromoacetate. Then the hapten was coupled to bovine serum albumin for production of the monoclonal antibody. Results showed that the obtained monoclonal antibody recognized five phenothiazine drugs simultaneously: chlorpromazine, promethazine, acepromazine, perphenazine, and fluphenazine. After evaluation of different coating antigens, a heterologous competitive indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was developed to determine the residues of the five phenothiazine drugs in swine tissues (muscle, liver, and kidney). The cross-reactivities to the five analytes were in the range of 71 to 98%, and the limits of detection were in the range of 0.2 to 0.4ng/ml, depending on the drug. Their recoveries from the fortified blank samples were in the range of 73.8 to 96.2%, with coefficients of variation in the range of 4.1 to 14.3%. This is the first study reporting a broad specific immunoassay for multi-determination of the residues of five phenothiazine drugs in animal-derived foods.

Monitoring Mixed Lineage Leukemia Expression May Help Identify Patients with Mixed Lineage Leukemia-Rearranged Acute Leukemia Who Are at High Risk of Relapse After Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation

Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation : Journal of the American Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24631740

To evaluate the prognostic value of the expression of the mixed lineage leukemia (MLL) gene for predicting the relapse of patients with MLL-rearranged acute leukemia (AL) after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT), the levels of MLL transcripts in bone marrow (BM) specimens were monitored serially by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RQ-PCR) at predetermined time points in 40 patients with MLL-rearranged AL who were treated with allo-HSCT. These patients were followed for a median of 24.5 months (range, 8 to 60 months). A total of 236 BM samples were collected and analyzed. Of these, 230 were monitored concurrently for minimal residual disease (MRD) by flow cytometry (FCM) for leukemia-associated aberrant immune phenotypes and by RQ-PCR for the expression of the Wilms tumor (WT1) gene. The 3-year cumulative incidence of relapse in patients who experienced MLL-positive patients (MLL > .0000%) (n = 9) after HSCT was 93.5% (95% confidence interval [CI], 87% to 100%) compared with 12.5% (95% CI, 5.6% to 19.4%) for MLL-negative patients (n = 31) (P < .001). For these 2 patient groups, the 3-year overall survival (OS) was 12.5% (95% CI, .8% to 24.2%) and 77.8% (95% CI, 68.4% to 87.2%) (P < .001), respectively, and the 3-year leukemia-free survival (LFS) was 0% and 72.2% (95% CI, 61.1% to 83.3%), respectively (P < .001). MLL positivity was associated with a higher rate of relapse (hazard ratio [HR], 18.643; 95% CI, 3.449 to 57.025; P = .001), lower LFS (HR, 7.267; 95% CI, 2.038 to 25.916; P = .002), and lower OS (HR, 8.259; 95% CI, 2.109 to 32.336; P = .002), as determined by Cox multivariate analysis. The expression of the MLL gene had a higher specificity and sensitivity than WT1 or MRD monitored by FCM for predicting the relapse of the patients with MLL + AL. Our results suggest that monitoring the expression of the MLL gene may help to identify patients with MLL + AL who are at high risk of relapse after allo-HSCT and may provide a guide for suitable intervention.

Global Transcriptome Analyses of Human and Murine Terminal Erythroid Differentiation

Blood. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24637361

We recently developed FACS-based methods to purify morphologically and functionally discrete populations of cells, each representing specific stages of terminal erythroid differentiation. We utilized these techniques to obtain pure populations of both human and murine erythroblasts at distinct developmental stages. RNA was prepared from these cells and subjected to RNA-seq analyses, creating unbiased, stage-specific transcriptomes. Tight clustering of transcriptomes from differing stages, even between biologically different replicates, validated the utility of the FACS-based assays. Bioinformatic analyses revealed that there were marked differences between differentiation stages, with both shared and dissimilar gene expression profiles defining each stage within transcriptional space. There were vast temporal changes in gene expression across the differentiation stages, with each stage exhibiting unique transcriptomes. Clustering and network analyses revealed that varying stage-specific patterns of expression observed across differentiation were enriched for genes of differing function. Importantly, numerous differences were present between human and murine transcriptomes, with significant variation in the global patterns of gene expression. These data provide a significant resource for studies of normal and perturbed erythropoiesis, allowing a deeper understanding of mechanisms of erythroid development in various inherited and acquired erythroid disorders.

Accelerated MRI with CIRcular Cartesian UnderSampling (CIRCUS): a Variable Density Cartesian Sampling Strategy for Compressed Sensing and Parallel Imaging

Quantitative Imaging in Medicine and Surgery. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24649436

This study proposes and evaluates a novel method for generating efficient undersampling patterns for 3D Cartesian acquisition with compressed sensing (CS) and parallel imaging (PI).

Translational Profiles of Medullary Myofibroblasts During Kidney Fibrosis

Journal of the American Society of Nephrology : JASN. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24652793

Myofibroblasts secrete matrix during chronic injury, and their ablation ameliorates fibrosis. Development of new biomarkers and therapies for CKD will be aided by a detailed analysis of myofibroblast gene expression during the early stages of fibrosis. However, dissociating myofibroblasts from fibrotic kidney is challenging. We therefore adapted translational ribosome affinity purification (TRAP) to isolate and profile mRNA from myofibroblasts and their precursors during kidney fibrosis. We generated and characterized a transgenic mouse expressing an enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP)-tagged L10a ribosomal subunit protein under control of the collagen1α1 promoter. We developed a one-step procedure for isolation of polysomal RNA from collagen1α1-eGFPL10a mice subject to unilateral ureteral obstruction and analyzed and validated the resulting transcriptional profiles. Pathway analysis revealed strong gene signatures for cell proliferation, migration, and shape change. Numerous novel genes and candidate biomarkers were upregulated during fibrosis, specifically in myofibroblasts, and we validated these results by quantitative PCR, in situ, and Western blot analysis. This study provides a comprehensive analysis of early myofibroblast gene expression during kidney fibrosis and introduces a new technique for cell-specific polysomal mRNA isolation in kidney injury models that is suited for RNA-sequencing technologies.

Unusual Compression Behavior of Nanocrystalline CeO₂

Scientific Reports. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24658049

The x-ray diffraction study of 12 nm CeO2 was carried out up to ~40 GPa using an angle dispersive synchrotron-radiation in a diamond-anvil cell with different pressure transmitting medium (PTM) (4:1 methanol: ethanol mixture, silicone oil and none) at room temperature. While the cubic fluorite-type structure CeO2 was retained to the highest pressure, there is progressive broadening and intensity reduction of the reflections with increasing pressure. At pressures above 12 GPa, an unusual change in the compression curve was detected in all experiments. Significantly, apparent negative volume compressibility was observed at P = 18-27 GPa with silicone oil as PTM, however it was not detected in other circumstances. The expansion of the unit cell volume of cubic CeO2 was about 1% at pressures of 15-27 GPa. To explain this abnormal phenomenon, a dual structure model (hard amorphous shell and relatively soft crystalline core) has been proposed.

The Epidemic Characteristics and Changing Trend of Hemorrhagic Fever with Renal Syndrome in Hubei Province, China

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24658382

Hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) is caused by different hantaviruses within the Bunyaviridae family. HFRS is a fulminant, infectious disease that occurs worldwide and is endemic in all 31 provinces of China. Since the first HFRS case in Hubei Province was reported in 1957, the disease has spread across the province and Hubei has become one of the seriously affected areas in China with the greatest number of reported HFRS cases in the 1980's. However, the epidemic characteristics of HFRS in Hubei are still not entirely clear and long-term, systematic investigations of this epidemic area have been very limited.

Chemotactic Responses of Neural Stem Cells to SDF-1α Correlate Closely with Their Differentiation Status

Journal of Molecular Neuroscience : MN. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24659235

Chemotaxis of neural stem/progenitor cells (NSCs) is regulated by a variety of factors, and much effort has been devoted to the delineation of factors that are involved in NSC migration. However, the relationship between NSC chemotactic migration and differentiation remains uncharacterized. In the present study, by comparing the transfilter migration rate, single-cell migration speed, and directional efficiency of NSCs in stromal cell-derived factor-1 alpha (SDF-1α)-induced Boyden chamber and Dunn chamber chemotaxis assays, we demonstrate that NSCs in varying differentiation stages possess different migratory capacity. Furthermore, F-actin microfilament reorganization upon stimulation varies greatly among separate differentiation states. We show that signaling pathways involved in NSC migration, such as PI3K/Akt and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) (ERK1/2, JNK, and p38 MAPK) pathways, are differentially activated by SDF-1α among each NSC differentiation stages, and the extent to which these pathways participate in cell chemotaxis exhibits a differentiation stage-dependent manner. Taken together, these results suggest that the differentiation of NSCs influences their chemotactic responses to SDF-1α, providing new insight into the optimization of the therapeutic efficacy of NSCs for neural regeneration and nerve repair after injury.

Highly Efficient N-glycoproteomic Sample Preparation by Combining C18 and Graphitized Carbon Adsorbents

Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24668066

Conventional N-glycoproteome analysis usually applies C18 reversed-phase (RP) adsorbent for sample purification, which will lead to unavoidable sample loss due to the high hydrophilicity of N-glycopeptides. In this study, a porous graphitized carbon (PGC) absorbent was combined with a C18 adsorbent for N-glycopeptide purification in comprehensive N-glycoproteome analysis based on the hydrophobic and polar interactions between carbon and N-glycans. It was observed that the small hydrophilic N-glycopeptides that cannot retain onto C18 adsorbent can be captured by the graphitized carbon, while the large hydrophobic N-glycopeptides that cannot retain onto the graphitized carbon can be feasibly captured by the C18 adsorbent. Comparing with sample purification by using C18 adsorbent only, 28.5 % more N-glycopeptides were identified by combining both C18 and PGC adsorbents. The C18-PGC strategy was further applied for both sample purification and pre-fractionation of a complex protein sample from HeLa cell. After hydrophilic interaction chromatography enrichment, 1,484 unique N-glycopeptides with 1,759 unique N-glycosylation sites were finally identified.

Brief Report Adult Patient Presenting an Interstitial (9) (q21.32q31.1) Direct Duplication Resulting from the Malsegregation of a Paternal Balanced Insertional Translocation

Birth Defects Research. Part A, Clinical and Molecular Teratology. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24668944

The partial trisomy 9q syndrome is a well-defined chromosomal disorder with over 40 reported cases in the literature. However, 9q duplications derived from an insertional translocation have rarely been reported.

Therapeutic Efficacy Comparison of Radiofrequency Ablation in Hepatocellular Carcinoma and Metastatic Liver Cancer

Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24669247

The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of radiofrequency ablation (RFA) on malignant hepatic tumors and compare its therapeutic efficacy in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and metastatic liver cancer (MLC). A total of 56 patients with malignant hepatic tumors (34 patients with HCC and 22 patients with MLC) underwent RFA treatment. Two weeks following the RFA treatment, contrast-enhanced abdominal computed tomography scans were used to investigate whether the ablation of the tumors was complete. The patients were followed up for a period ranging from 1 to 93 months, to compare recurrence rates, distant recurrence rates and survival rates. The HCC group exhibited an initial complete ablation rate of 94.1% compared with 95.4% for the MLC group; the difference in ablation rates was not identified to be statistically significant. The recurrence and distant recurrence rates were 14.7% and 11.8%, respectively, for the HCC group and 9.1% and 36.4%, respectively, for the MLC group. The 1-, 3- and 5-year survival rates of the patients with HCC were 86.2, 71.4 and 60.0%, respectively, whereas those for the patients with MLC were 73.9%, 45.4% and 37.5%, respectively. The survival rates of the two groups were identified to be significantly different (P=0.002). RFA treatment was therefore shown to be effective in treating small (<5 cm) malignancies, which is clinically significant.

[Role of the Small Intestinal Decompression Tube and Gastrografin in the Treatment of Early Postoperative Inflammatory Small Bowel Obstruction]

Zhonghua Wei Chang Wai Ke Za Zhi = Chinese Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24671819

To evaluate the role of the small intestinal decompression tube (SIDT) and Gastrografin in the treatment of early postoperative inflammatory small bowel obstruction (EPISBO).

Biomimetic Microfluidic Device for in Vitro Antihypertensive Drug Evaluation

Molecular Pharmaceutics. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24673554

Microfluidic devices have emerged as revolutionary, novel platforms for in vitro drug evaluation. In this work, we developed a facile method for evaluating antihypertensive drugs using a microfluidic chip. This microfluidic chip was generated using the elastic material poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) and a microchannel structure that simulated a blood vessel as fabricated on the chip. We then cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) inside the channel. Different pressures and shear stresses could be applied on the cells. The generated vessel mimics can be used for evaluating the safety and effects of antihypertensive drugs. Here, we used hydralazine hydrochloride as a model drug. The results indicated that hydralazine hydrochloride effectively decreased the pressure-induced dysfunction of endothelial cells. This work demonstrates that our microfluidic system provides a convenient and cost-effective platform for studying cellular responses to drugs under mechanical pressure.

Antenatal Taurine Supplementation Increases Taurine Content in Intrauterine Growth Restricted Fetal Rat Brain Tissue

Metabolic Brain Disease. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24676564

This study aimed to determine the influence of antenatal taurine supplementation on taurine content in the brains of fetal rats with intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR). Experiments were performed at the Central Laboratory of Bayi Children's Hospital Affiliated to Beijing Military General Hospital in China from January to June 2013. Fifteen pregnant rats were randomly divided into three groups: normal controls, an IUGR group and an IUGR + antenatal taurine supplement group (Taurine group) (n = 5). The IUGR model was induced using a low-protein diet throughout gestation. Rats in the taurine group were fed a diet supplemented with 300 mg/kg/day taurine for 12 days after conception until natural delivery. Two fetal rats were randomly selected in every litter, and taurine levels in the brains of rats were detected using high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. Results showed that (1) the mean body weight of the fetal rats in the normal control, IUGR and IUGR + antenatal taurine supplement groups was 6.619 ± 0.4132, 4.509 ± 0.454, and 5.176 ± 0.436 g (F = 429.818, P < 0.01), respectively, and (2) that taurine levels in the brains of the fetal rats in the normal control, IUGR and taurine groups were (2.399 ± 0.134) × 10(5), (1.881 ± 0.166) × 10(5) and (2.170 ± 0.191) × 10(5) μg/g (F = 24.828, P < 0.01), respectively. Overall, our results indicated that taurine levels in IUGR fetal rat brains were lower than in the control animals, and that antenatal taurine supplementation could significantly increase taurine levels in the brains of fetal rats with IUGR.

Letter Regarding Li Et Al. "prognostic Impact of Late Gadolinium Enhancement by Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Patients with Non-ischaemic Dilated Cardiomyopathy"

International Journal of Cardiology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24680247

Structural Diversity Requires Individual Optimization of Ethanol Concentration in Polysaccharide Precipitation

International Journal of Biological Macromolecules. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24680808

Ethanol precipitation is one of the most widely used methods for preparing natural polysaccharides, in which ethanol concentration significantly affects the precipitate yield, however, is usually set at 70-80%. Whether the standardization of ethanol concentration is appropriate has not been investigated. In the present study, the precipitation yields produced in varied ethanol concentrations (10-90%) were qualitatively and quantitatively evaluated by HPGPC (high-performance gel-permeation chromatography), using two series of standard glucans, namely dextrans and pullulans, as reference samples, and then eight natural samples. The results indicated that the response of a polysaccharide's chemical structure, with diversity in structural features and molecular sizes, to ethanol concentration is the decisive factor in precipitation of these glucans. Polysaccharides with different structural features, even though they have similar molecular weights, exhibit significantly different precipitation behaviors. For a specific glucan, the lower its molecular size, the higher the ethanol concentration needed for complete precipitation. The precipitate yield varied from 10% to 100% in 80% ethanol as the molecular size increased from 1kDa to 270kDa. This paper aims to draw scientists' attention to the fact that, in extracting natural polysaccharides by ethanol precipitation, the ethanol concentration must be individually optimized for each type of material.

The Multi-targeted Kinase Inhibitor Sorafenib Inhibits Enterovirus 71 Replication by Regulating IRES-dependent Translation of Viral Proteins

Antiviral Research. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24680956

The activation of ERK and p38 signal cascade in host cells has been demonstrated to be essential for picornavirus enterovirus 71 (EV71) replication and up-regulation of virus-induced cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2)/prostaglandins E2 (PGE2) expression. The aim of this study was to examine the effects of sorafenib, a clinically approved anti-cancer multi-targeted kinase inhibitor, on the propagation and pathogenesis of EV71, with a view to its possible mechanism and potential use in the design of therapy regimes for Hand foot and mouth disease (HFMD) patients with life threatening neurological complications. In this study, non-toxic concentrations of sorafenib were shown to inhibit the yield of infectious progeny EV71 (clinical BC08 strain) by about 90% in three different cell types. A similar inhibitory effect of sorafenib was observed on the synthesis of both viral genomic RNA and the VP1 protein. Interestingly, sorafenib exerted obvious inhibition of the EV71 internal ribosomal entry site (IRES)-mediated translation, the first step in picornavirus replication, by linking it to a firefly luciferase reporter gene. Sorafenib was also able to prevent both EV71-induced CPE and the activation of ERK and p38, which contributes to up-regulation COX-2/PGE2 expression induced by the virus. Overall, this study shows that sorafenib strongly inhibits EV71 replication at least in part by regulating viral IRES-dependent translation of viral proteins, indicating a novel potential strategy for the treatment of HFMD patients with severe neurological complications. To our knowledge, this is the first report that investigates the mechanism by which sorafenib inhibits EV71 replication.

Sp1 Modification of Human Endothelial Nitric Oxide Synthase Promoter Increases the Hypoxia-stimulated Activity

Microvascular Research. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24681424

Human endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) gene has a TATA-less weak promoter with a low activity. The aim of this study was to increase eNOS promoter activity by modification. Human eNOS promoter was modified by inserting a Sp1 element at a -74bp site and function of the modified promoter was investigated via a hypoxia model induced by cobalt chloride in human umbilical vein endothelial cells. The results demonstrated that the Sp1-modified promoter resulted in a significant increase of normalized luciferase activity in the presence of hypoxia. There was a correlation between the transcriptional activity of the Sp1-modified promoter and the level of eNOS expression with enhancement of nitric oxide production. Together, these data indicate that human eNOS promoter activity is increased by inserting Sp1 binding site into the GC-rich region of the promoter in response to hypoxia, suggesting that this provides an approach to ameliorate microcirculation barrier of some cardiovascular disease and to study its mechanistic process.

Cosuppression of RBCS3B in Arabidopsis Leads to Severe Photoinhibition Caused by ROS Accumulation

Plant Cell Reports. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24682522

Cosuppression of an Arabidopsis Rubisco small subunit gene RBCS3B at Arabidopsis resulted in albino or pale green phenotypes which were caused by ROS accumulation As the most abundant protein on Earth, Rubisco has received much attention in the past decades. Even so, its function is still not understood thoroughly. In this paper, four Arabidopsis transgenic lines (RBCS3B-7, 18, 33, and 35) with albino or pale green phenotypes were obtained by transformation with a construct driving expression of sense RBCS3B, a Rubisco small subunit gene. The phenotypes produced in these transgenic lines were found to be caused by cosuppression. Among these lines, RBCS3B-7 displayed the most severe phenotypes including reduced height, developmental arrest and plant mortality before flowering when grown under normal light on soil. Chloroplast numbers in mesophyll cells were decreased compared to WT, and stacked thylakoids of chloroplasts were broken down gradually in RBCS3B-7 throughout development. In addition, the RBCS3B-7 line was light sensitive, and PSII activity measurement revealed that RBCS3B-7 suffered severe photoinhibition, even under normal light. We found that photoinhibition was due to accumulation of ROS, which accelerated photodamage of PSII and inhibited the repair of PSII in RBCS3B-7.

Design and Evaluation of a Device for Fast Multispectral Time-resolved Fluorescence Spectroscopy and Imaging

The Review of Scientific Instruments. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24689603

The application of time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy (TRFS) to in vivo tissue diagnosis requires a method for fast acquisition of fluorescence decay profiles in multiple spectral bands. This study focusses on development of a clinically compatible fiber-optic based multispectral TRFS (ms-TRFS) system together with validation of its accuracy and precision for fluorescence lifetime measurements. It also presents the expansion of this technique into an imaging spectroscopy method. A tandem array of dichroic beamsplitters and filters was used to record TRFS decay profiles at four distinct spectral bands where biological tissue typically presents fluorescence emission maxima, namely, 390, 452, 542, and 629 nm. Each emission channel was temporally separated by using transmission delays through 200 μm diameter multimode optical fibers of 1, 10, 19, and 28 m lengths. A Laguerre-expansion deconvolution algorithm was used to compensate for modal dispersion inherent to large diameter optical fibers and the finite bandwidth of detectors and digitizers. The system was found to be highly efficient and fast requiring a few nano-Joule of laser pulse energy and <1 ms per point measurement, respectively, for the detection of tissue autofluorescent components. Organic and biological chromophores with lifetimes that spanned a 0.8-7 ns range were used for system validation, and the measured lifetimes from the organic fluorophores deviated by less than 10% from values reported in the literature. Multi-spectral lifetime images of organic dye solutions contained in glass capillary tubes were recorded by raster scanning the single fiber probe in a 2D plane to validate the system as an imaging tool. The lifetime measurement variability was measured indicating that the system provides reproducible results with a standard deviation smaller than 50 ps. The ms-TRFS is a compact apparatus that makes possible the fast, accurate, and precise multispectral time-resolved fluorescence lifetime measurements of low quantum efficiency sub-nanosecond fluorophores.

Exploring the Effect of Sequence Length and Composition on Allele-Selective Inhibition of Human Huntingtin Expression by Single-Stranded Silencing RNAs

Nucleic Acid Therapeutics. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24694346

Mutant huntingtin (HTT) protein is the cause of Huntington's disease (HD), an incurable neurological disorder. Almost all patients are heterozygous for mutant HTT and approaches that reduce levels of mutant HTT while leaving expression of wild-type HTT intact might be ideal options for therapeutic development. We have developed several allele-selective strategies for silencing HTT, including single-stranded silencing RNAs (ss-siRNAs). ss-siRNAs are oligonucleotides containing chemical modifications that permit action through the RNA interference (RNAi) pathway. Modified ss-siRNAs chosen to test the effects of varying oligomer length, lipid modification, the introduction of mismatched bases, and variation of chemical modification. We find that several modified ss-siRNA are potent and allele-selective inhibitors of HTT expression. An ss-siRNA with three mismatched bases relative to the CAG repeat was an allele-selective inhibitor of HTT expression in the HdhQ175 mouse model. Multiple allele-selective ss-siRNAs provide a wide platform of modifications to draw on for further optimization and therapeutic development. Our data provide insights into how ss-siRNAs can be modified to improve their properties and facilitate the discovery of the lead compounds necessary for further development.

Donor Lymphocytes May Acquire Cytolytic Specificity to Donor's Engrafted Hematopoietic Cells After a Hematopoietic Stem Cell Allograft Resulting in Marrow Failure

Clinical Laboratory. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24697123

Secondary rejection sometimes occurs after engraftment of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT), which results in marrow failure. To clear possible reasons for BM failure, we observed a patient with acute myeloblastic leukemia who died of hematopoietic failure one year after apparently successful allo-HSCT.

Personal Electronics Printing Via Tapping Mode Composite Liquid Metal Ink Delivery and Adhesion Mechanism

Scientific Reports. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24699375

Printed electronics is becoming increasingly important in a variety of newly emerging areas. However, restricted to the rather limited conductive inks and available printing strategies, the current electronics manufacture is usually confined to industry level. Here, we show a highly cost-effective and entirely automatic printing way towards personal electronics making, through introducing a tapping-mode composite fluid delivery system. Fundamental mechanisms regarding the reliable printing, transfer and adhesion of the liquid metal inks on the substrate were disclosed through systematic theoretical interpretation and experimental measurements. With this liquid metal printer, a series of representative electronic patterns spanning from single wires to desired complex configurations such as integrated circuit (IC), printed-circuits-on-board (PCB), electronic paintings, or more do-it-yourself (DIY) devices, were demonstrated to be printed out with high precision in a moment. And the total machine cost already reached personally affordable price. This is hard to achieve by a conventional PCB technology which generally takes long time and is material, water and energy consuming, while the existing printed electronics is still far away from the real direct printing goal. The present work opens the way for large scale personal electronics manufacture and is expected to generate important value for the coming society.

The Batten Disease Gene CLN3 Confers Resistance to Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress Induced by Tunicamycin

Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24699413

Mutations in CLN3 gene cause juvenile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (JNCL or Batten disease), an early-onset neurodegenerative disorder that is characterized by the accumulation of ceroid lipofuscin within lysosomes. The function of the CLN3 protein remains unclear and is presumed to be related to Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. To investigate the function of CLN3 in the ER stress signaling pathway, we measured proliferation and apoptosis in cells transfected with normal and mutant CLN3 after treatment with the ER stress inducer tunicamycin (TM). We found that overexpression of CLN3 was sufficient in conferring increased resistance to ER stress. Wild-type CLN3 protected cells from TM-induced apoptosis and increased cell proliferation. Overexpression of wild-type CLN3 enhanced expression of the ER chaperone protein, glucose-regulated protein 78 (GRP78), and reduced expression of the proapoptotic protein CCAAT/-enhancer-binding protein homologous protein (CHOP). In contrast, overexpression of mutant CLN3 or siRNA knockdown of CLN3 produced the opposite effect. Together, our data suggest that the lack of CLN3 function in cells leads to a failure of management in the response to ER stress and this may be the key deficit in JNCL that causes neuronal degeneration.

Urchin-like TiO₂@C Core-shell Microspheres: Coupled Synthesis and Lithium-ion Battery Applications

Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics : PCCP. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24700238

Carbon coated urchin-like TiO2 microspheres were prepared through coupled hydrolysis of titanium tetrachloride and catalyzed carbonization of glucose. Carbon coating endowed the composite with unusual structural stability at high temperature and reasonable Li-ion battery performance.

Nanoscale Probing the Kinetics of Oriented Bacterial Cell Growth Using Atomic Force Microscopy

Small (Weinheim an Der Bergstrasse, Germany). Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24706390

Probing oriented bacterial cell growth on the nanoscale: A novel open-top micro-channel is developed to facilitate the AFM imaging of physically trapped but freely growing bacteria. The growth curves of individual Escherichia coli cells with nanometer resolution and their kinetic nano-mechanical properties are quantitatively measured.

Impact of Cardiovascular Disease Deaths on Life Expectancy in Chinese Population

Biomedical and Environmental Sciences : BES. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24709096

We aimed to analyze the impact of cardiovascular disease (CVD) deaths on life expectancy (LE) in Chinese population and estimate the percentage reduction in CVD mortality needed to increase LE by 1 year from the current level, a national target of health improvement.

Impact of Cerebrovascular Disease Mortality on Life Expectancy in China

Biomedical and Environmental Sciences : BES. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24709097

To evaluate the impact of cerebrovascular disease mortality on life expectancy (LE) in China in 2010 compared with 2005, and to identify the high-risk population (age, sex, and region) where cerebrovascular disease mortality has had a major impact on LE.

[Clinical Study of the Influence of Daily Sedation Interruption on Fluctuation of Blood Glucose Level and Mortality of Critical Patients with Multiple Trauma]

Zhonghua Wei Zhong Bing Ji Jiu Yi Xue. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24709494

To assess the influence of a protocol of routine daily interruption of sedation on fluctuation of blood glucose level and mortality of critical patients with multiple trauma.

Cetuximab-induced MET Activation Acts As a Novel Resistance Mechanism in Colon Cancer Cells

International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24714091

Aberrant MET expression and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) signaling are implicated in promoting resistance to targeted agents; however, the induced MET activation by epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitors mediating resistance to targeted therapy remains elusive. In this study, we identified that cetuximab-induced MET activation contributed to cetuximab resistance in Caco-2 colon cancer cells. MET inhibition or knockdown sensitized Caco-2 cells to cetuximab-mediated growth inhibition. Additionally, SRC activation promoted cetuximab resistance by interacting with MET. Pretreatment with SRC inhibitors abolished cetuximab-mediated MET activation and rendered Caco-2 cells sensitive to cetuximab. Notably, cetuximab induced MET/SRC/EGFR complex formation. MET inhibitor or SRC inhibitor suppressed phosphorylation of MET and SRC in the complex, and MET inhibitor singly led to disruption of complex formation. These results implicate alternative targeting of MET or SRC as rational strategies for reversing cetuximab resistance in colon cancer.

Reduced Growth and Proliferation Dynamics of Nasal Epithelial Stem/progenitor Cells in Nasal Polyps in Vitro

Scientific Reports. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24714674

Basal cells in nasal epithelium have stemness/progenitor characters and play essential roles in the epithelial remodeling in nasal polyps (NP). We investigate whether the human nasal epithelial stem/progenitor cells (hNESPCs) from patients with NP are inherently distinct from those obtained from healthy controls. Epithelial basal cells were isolated and cultured for four passages from NP tissues and control nasal mucosa. hNESPCs from controls were stained positively with stem cell marker p63 and KRT5 and presented a consistent high Ki67 expression level over four passages. In contrast, hNESPCs from NP patients showed: i). a reduced growth and proliferation rate at each passage by evaluating colony-forming efficiency and doubling time; ii). a lower percentage of Ki67(+) cells among p63(+) cells in the colonies in late passages, which was also confirmed by immunostaining in the NP tissues. Thus reduced growth/proliferation dynamics in hNESPCs from NP could be an important pathological phenomenon in NP development.

Regulation of Lead Toxicity by Heat Shock Protein 90 (daf-21) is Affected by Temperature in Caenorhabditis Elegans

Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24726945

In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, stress resistance can be regulated by dauer formation (daf) genes. In the present study, regulation of heavy metal lead (Pb) toxicity by the 90-kDa heat shock proteins (Hsp90; daf-21) was investigated in both wild-type C. elegans and daf-21/Hsp90 mutants by focusing on the effects of varied temperatures below (15°C) or above (25 and 30°C) the presumptive optimum growth temperature (20°C). More acute toxicity of Pb, indicated by the 24-h median lethal concentrations (LC50), was observed in wild-type adults than in the daf-21 mutant adults at 15, 20 and 25°C; however, the daf-21 mutant adults showed more sensitivity at 30°C. Enhanced Pb sensitivity (e.g., decrease LC50) in both types of C. elegans was observed with both increased and decreased temperatures when compared to that at 20°C. Additional examined endpoints included time course of toxicity at LC50s, pharyngeal pumping, reproduction, life span, and Hsp90 expression. Collective results showed that temperatures both above and below 20°C exacerbated Pb toxicity, and that the protein level of daf-21/Hsp90 was one of the most sensitive indicators of Pb toxicity in wild-type C. elegans, while pharyngeal pumping was more Pb sensitive in daf-21 mutants. Therefore, the expression of daf-21/Hsp90 has apparent utility for the prediction and assessment of Pb-induced toxicity in nematodes. Further, the stress responses related to Hsp90 expression in C. elegans may have considerable potential as sensitive biomarkers for the monitoring of environmental Pb contamination.

One-pot Synthesis of Ag/r-GO/TiO2 Nanocomposites with High Solar Absorption and Enhanced Anti-recombination in Photocatalytic Applications

Nanoscale. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24730025

In this paper, we reported a simple one-pot solvothermal approach to fabricate Ag/reduced graphene oxide (r-GO)/TiO2 composite photocatalyst under atmospheric pressure. Based on the experimental data, we concluded that the introduction of Ag into classical graphene-TiO2 system (i) efficiently enlarges the absorption range, (ii) improves photogenerated electron separation and (iii) increases photocatalysis reaction sites. The optimized sample exhibits prominent photocatalysis ability as compared to pure TiO2 under simulated sunlight. We further proposed that besides the above three advantages of Ag, a different size of Ag nanoparticles is also responsible for the improved photocatalysis ability, where small size Ag nanoparticles (2-5 nm) could store a photoexcited electron that was generated from TiO2, while large-size Ag nanoparticles could utilize visible light due to their localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) absorption. Our present work gives new insights into the photocatalysis mechanism of noble metal/r-GO/TiO2 composites and provides a new pathway into the design of TiO2-based photocatalysts and promote their practical application in various environmental and energy issues.

The Toll-like Receptor-4 Signalling in the Progression of Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease Induced by High Fat and High Fructose Diet in Mice

Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology & Physiology. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24739055

The aim of the present study was to investigate toll-like receptor-4 (TLR4) signalling at different stages of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) induced by high fat high fructose (HFHFr) diet in mice. TLR4 wild type (WT) and mutant (TLR4mut) mice were fed with either standard chow (SC) or HFHFr diet for different periods of time from 4 to 16 weeks. The liver pathological characteristics and functions were assessed. Simple steatosis, steatohepatitis and hepatic fibrosis occurred sequentially in week 4, 8 and 16 in the WT mice fed with HFHFr. The expression levels of TLR4, MyD88, IRF3 and IRF7 started to increase at the time course of week 4, peaked at week 8, and then declined to basal levels at week 16. This alteration pattern was consistent with the changes of inflammation in the livers revealed by H&E staining. However, lipid accumulation, inflammation and fibrosis in the livers of TLR4mut mice given HFHFr diet were significantly alleviated. In addition, the expression of activin-A in TLR4-WT mice fed with HFHFr diet increased at week 16. Our dada suggest that TLR4 signaling mediates non-alcoholic steatohepatitis before fibrosis, and activin-A is subsequently involved in NAFLD. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

[Descriptive Epidemiological Study on Mental Disabilities in China]

Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi = Zhonghua Liuxingbingxue Zazhi. Feb, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24739548

To describe the prevalence and characteristics of mental disabilities in China.

Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in Surface Sediment of Typical Estuaries and the Spatial Distribution in Haihe River Basin

Ecotoxicology (London, England). May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24740319

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) with carcinogenic and mutagenic characteristics have been detected in many estuaries and bays around the world. To detect the contaminated level in typical estuaries in Haihe river basin, China, a comprehensive survey of 16 PAHs in surface sediment has been conducted and an ecological risk assessment has been taken. It showed that Haihe river estuary had the highest concentration, ranging from 92.91 to 15886.00 ng g(-1). And Luan river estuary has the lowest polluted level, ranging from 39.55 to 328.10 ng g(-1). PAHs in sediment were dominated by low and mid molecular weight PAHs in all the sampling sites. Most of the sampling sites in all sampling seasons indicated a rarely happened ecological risk of ΣPAHs, while the S6 in Haihe river estuary was in an occasionally anticipated risk. To illustrate the spatial distribution pattern of PAHs in surface sediment in Haihe river basin, the results were compared with previous research of the research team. Based on data of the comparison, it had been revealed that Haihe river had the most serious PAHs pollution, with an average concentration of 5884.86 ng g(-1), and showed the highest contamination level in all four ecological units. The ΣPAHs concentration showed in a rank of reservoir > estuary > rural area > city.

Water Quality Laboratories in Colombia: A GIS-based Study of Urban and Rural Accessibility

The Science of the Total Environment. Jul, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24747256

The objective of this study was to quantify sample transportation times associated with mandated microbiological monitoring of drinking-water in Colombia. World Health Organization Guidelines for Drinking-Water Quality recommend that samples spend no more than 6h between collection and analysis in a laboratory. Census data were used to estimate the minimum number of operational and surveillance samples required from piped water supplies under national regulations. Drive-times were then computed from each supply system to the nearest accredited laboratory and translated into sample holding times based on likely daily monitoring patterns. Of 62,502 surveillance samples required annually, 5694 (9.1%) were found to be more than 6h from the nearest of 278 accredited laboratories. 612 samples (1.0%) were more than 24hours' drive from the nearest accredited laboratory, the maximum sample holding time recommended by the World Health Organization. An estimated 30% of required rural samples would have to be stored for more than 6h before reaching a laboratory. The analysis demonstrates the difficulty of undertaking microbiological monitoring in rural areas and small towns from a fixed laboratory network. Our GIS-based approach could be adapted to optimise monitoring strategies and support planning of testing and transportation infra-structure development. It could also be used to estimate sample transport and holding times in other countries.

Optimal Linear Combination of ARFI, Transient Elastography and APRI for the Assessment of Fibrosis in Chronic Hepatitis B

Liver International : Official Journal of the International Association for the Study of the Liver. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24751289

Accurate assessment of liver fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) is necessary not only to predict the long-term clinical course but also to determine an appropriate antiviral therapy scheme. Several noninvasive approaches - serum markers and elastography - have been proposed as alternatives for the histopathological analysis of liver biopsies. The aim of this study was to evaluate two ultrasound elastography methods (ARFI and TE) and one biochemical test (APRI), as well as their optimal linear combination, in the assessment of liver fibrosis in CHB.

NuMA Promotes Homologous Recombination Repair by Regulating the Accumulation of the ISWI ATPase SNF2h at DNA Breaks

Nucleic Acids Research. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24753406

Chromatin remodeling factors play an active role in the DNA damage response by shaping chromatin to facilitate the repair process. The spatiotemporal regulation of these factors is key to their function, yet poorly understood. We report that the structural nuclear protein NuMA accumulates at sites of DNA damage in a poly[ADP-ribose]ylation-dependent manner and functionally interacts with the ISWI ATPase SNF2h/SMARCA5, a chromatin remodeler that facilitates DNA repair. NuMA coimmunoprecipitates with SNF2h, regulates its diffusion in the nucleoplasm and controls its accumulation at DNA breaks. Consistent with NuMA enabling SNF2h function, cells with silenced NuMA exhibit reduced chromatin decompaction after DNA cleavage, lesser focal recruitment of homologous recombination repair factors, impaired DNA double-strand break repair in chromosomal (but not in episomal) contexts and increased sensitivity to DNA cross-linking agents. These findings reveal a structural basis for the orchestration of chromatin remodeling whereby a scaffold protein promotes genome maintenance by directing a remodeler to DNA breaks.

Activation of MTOR Contributes to Foam Cell Formation in the Radial Arteries of Patients with End-stage Renal Disease

Clinical Nephrology. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24755105

Background: Our previous in-vivo and in-vitro studies demonstrated that inflammation accelerated the progression of atherosclerosis via the dysregulation of the low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLr) pathway. The current study aimed to investigate the effects and their underlying mechanisms of inflammation on lipid accumulation in the radial arteries of endstage renal disease (ESRD) patients with arteriovenostomy. Methods: 30 ESRD patients with arteriovenostomy were included. The patients were divided into two groups based on their plasma levels of C-reactive protein: a control (n = 16) and an inflamed group (n = 14). The expression of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 of the radial arteries were increased in the inflamed group. Foam cell formation and lipid droplet accumulation were examined by hematoxylin and eosin (H & E) and Oil Red O staining. Intracellular cholesterol trafficking-related proteins were examined by immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescent staining. Results: There was significant lipid accumulation in the radial arteries of the inflamed group compared with the control. Further analysis demonstrated that this accumulation was correlated with the increased protein expression of LDLr, sterol regulatory element-binding protein-2 (SREBP-2), and SREBP cleavageactivating protein (SCAP). Confocal microscopy showed that inflammation enhanced the translocation of SCAP escorting SREBP-2 from the endoplasmic reticulum to the Golgi, thereby activating LDLr gene transcription. Interestingly, upregulated LDLr expression was positively associated with the increased protein expression of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), which had enhanced coexpression with SREBP-2. This finding suggests that the activation of mTOR may be involved in LDLr pathway disruption through the upregulation of SREBP-2 expression. Conclusion: Inflammation contributed to foam cell formation in the radial arteries of ESRD patients via the dysregulation of the LDLr pathway, which could be modulated by the activation of the mTOR pathway.

Metalloproteins Containing Cytochrome, Iron-sulfur, or Copper Redox Centers

Chemical Reviews. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24758379

Liquid Metal Angiography for Mega Contrast X-ray Visualization of Vascular Network in Reconstructing In-vitro Organ Anatomy

IEEE Transactions on Bio-medical Engineering. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24759980

Visualization on the anatomical vessel networks plays a vital role in the physiological or pathological investigations. However, so far it still remains a big challenge to identify the fine structures of the smallest capillary vessel networks via conventional imaging ways. Here, the room temperature liquid metal angiography was proposed for the first time to generate mega contrast X-ray images for multi-scale vasculature mapping. Particularly, gallium was adopted as the room temperature liquid metal contrast agent and infused into the vessels of in vitro pig hearts and kidneys. We scanned the samples under X-ray and compared the angiograms with those obtained via conventional contrast agent--the iohexol. As quantitatively demonstrated by the grayscale histograms and numerical indexes, the contrast of the vessels to the surrounding tissues in the liquid metal angiograms is orders higher than that of the iohexol enhanced images. And the angiogram has reached detailed enough width of 0.1mm for the tiny vessels, which indicated that the capillaries can be clearly distinguished under the liquid metal enhanced images. Further, with tomography from the micro-CT, we also managed to reconstruct the 3-dementional structures of the kidney vessels. Tremendous clarity and efficiency of the method over existing approaches have been experimentally clarified. It was disclosed that the usually invisible capillary networks now become distinctively clear in the gallium angiograms. This basic mechanism has generalized purpose and can be extended to a wide spectrum of 3-dimensional computational tomographic areas. It opens a new soft tool for quickly reconstructing high resolution spatial channel networks for scientific researches as well as engineering practices where complicated and time-consuming resections are no longer a necessity.

Is 0.15mmol/kg of Contrast Agent Effective for Delayed-enhancement Magnetic Resonance Imaging at 1.5T?

International Journal of Cardiology. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24767753

LSECtin Expressed on Melanoma Cells Promotes Tumor Progression by Inhibiting Antitumor T Cell Responses

Cancer Research. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24769443

Co-inhibitory molecules of T cell immune responses have received considerable attention for their successful clinical effects during immunotherapy for the treatment of multiple cancers. LSECtin, a cell-surface member of the C-type lectin DC-SIGN family, has been shown to inhibit T cell responses and viral clearance in the liver. However, its role in antitumor immunity and tumor growth remains unclear. Herein, we detected LSECtin expression in approximately 50% of melanoma samples in a human tumor tissue array. In a B16 melanoma model, we revealed that LSECtin, when expressed on B16 cells, promoted tumor growth and LSECtin blockade resulted in significantly slower tumor growth in both WT and LSECtin KO mice; this LSECtin-mediated tumor-promoting effect was abrogated in Rag1-/- mice or in response to CD4+ or CD8+ T cell depletion. We further determined that LSECtin inhibited the proliferation of tumor-specific effector T cells by downregulating cell cycle-regulating kinases such as CDK2, CDK4, and CDK6. Consistently, LSECtin expressed on B16 tumor cells inhibited tumor-specific T cell responses in vivo and in vitro. Importantly, we indicated that LSECtin interacted with LAG-3, and LAG-3 blockade restored the reduced IFN-γ secretion mediated by melanoma-derived LSECtin. Together, LSECtin expressed on melanoma cells appears to be a novel possible mechanism of immune escape of melanoma cells and provides a foundation for potential combinatorial immunotherapy strategies.

Whole Dystrophin Gene Analysis by Next-generation Sequencing: a Comprehensive Genetic Diagnosis of Duchenne and Becker Muscular Dystrophy

Molecular Genetics and Genomics : MGG. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24770780

Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophies are the most frequent inherited neuromuscular diseases caused by mutations of the dystrophin gene. However, approximately 30 % of patients with the disease do not receive a molecular diagnosis because of the complex mutational spectrum and the large size of the gene. The introduction and use of next-generation sequencing have advanced clinical genetic research and might be a suitable method for the detection of various types of mutations in the dystrophin gene. To identify the mutational spectrum using a single platform, whole dystrophin gene sequencing was performed using next-generation sequencing. The entire dystrophin gene, including all exons, introns and promoter regions, was target enriched using a DMD whole gene enrichment kit. The enrichment libraries were sequenced on an Illumina HiSeq 2000 sequencer using paired read 100 bp sequencing. We studied 26 patients: 21 had known large deletion/duplications and 5 did not have detectable large deletion/duplications by multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification technology (MLPA). We applied whole dystrophin gene analysis by next-generation sequencing to the five patients who did not have detectable large deletion/duplications and to five randomly chosen patients from the 21 who did have large deletion/duplications. The sequencing data covered almost 100 % of the exonic region of the dystrophin gene by ≥10 reads with a mean read depth of 147. Five small mutations were identified in the first five patients, of which four variants were unreported in the database. The deleted or duplicated exons and the breakpoints in the five large deletion/duplication patients were precisely identified. Whole dystrophin gene sequencing by next-generation sequencing may be a useful tool for the genetic diagnosis of Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies.

Evaluation on Genotoxicity and Teratogenicity of Aqueous Extract from Cyclocarya Paliurus Leaves

TheScientificWorldJournal. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24778586

Tremendous attentions have been attracted to the foods labeled with natural, green, organic, and nuisanceless conception of healthy diet. Therefore, it is of great significance to establish relative defining guidance for safe assessment of botanicals. Cyclocarya paliurus (Batal.) Iljinsk (family Cyclocaryaceae), called sweet tea tree, is a well-known edible and medicinal plant, which has been widely used in China as drug formulation for the treatment of hypertension and diabetes. Despite its benefits, no reports have been described on the safe assessment of C. paliurus leaves aqueous extract. In this study, we have conducted the genotoxicity assay (including Ames test, bone marrow polychromatic erythrocyte micronucleus test, and sperm abnormality test in mice) and traditional teratogenicity assay in rats (maternal toxicity, embryo toxicity, and teratogenicity test) to assess the genetic and teratogenic safety of aqueous extracts from C. paliurus leaves. Results of each assay show that the highest dose of C. paliurus leaves aqueous extract is considered relatively nonmutagenic and nonteratogenic, revealing that C. paliurus leaves possess safety and quality as a functional additional ingredient in food.

Significance of Interleukin-33 and Its Related Cytokines in Patients with Breast Cancers

Frontiers in Immunology. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24778632

Interleukin-33 (IL-33) is a recently identified cytokine, an important member of the interleukin-1 family. IL-33 binds to its receptor ST2 to induce type 2 cytokines and exert both pro-inflammatory and protective functions in host defense and disease. Murine breast carcinoma models suggest disruption of ST2 signaling may enhance the anti-tumor immune response, suggesting IL-33 impedes anti-tumor immunity. However, the role of IL-33 in patients with breast cancers (BC) is not elucidated. We detected the expression of IL-33 in tumor tissue, and IL-33 and its related cytokines in serum from BC patients. Using Luminex and immunohistochemistry methods, we found that serum levels of IL-33 were nearly twofold higher in patients with BC, compared to patients with benign breast diseases. In cancer tissues, expression of IL-33 was higher than matched normal breast tissues from the same patients, and was also associated with a well-differentiated phenotype, HER2 overexpression, more lymph nodes involvement, and a family history of malignant carcinoma. These results suggest that IL-33 may play an important role in the progress of BC and may be a useful biomarker for predicting the progress and metastasis of BC.

The Function of CD3+CD56+ NKT-like Cells in HIV-infected Individuals

BioMed Research International. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24779018

CD3(+)CD56(+) NKT-like cells are one of the critical effectors in the immune response to viral infection and tumors, but the functional features of NKT-like cells in HIV infection have been rarely reported. In this study, we observed and described the state of NKT-like cell functions in primary HIV-infected individuals (PHIs), chronic HIV-infected individuals (CHIs), long-term nonprogressors (LTNPs), and HIV-negative controls (NCs). The results showed that the percentage of IFN-γ(+)CD3(+)CD56(+) NKT-like cells was notably higher in LTNPs compared with CHIs, and the proportion of CD3(+)CD56(+) NKT-like cells with dual function (IFN-γ(+)CD107a(+) NKT-like cells) in LTNPs was also much higher than in CHIs. Additionally, the percentages of IFN-γ(+)CD107a(+) NKT-like cells negatively correlated with viral load. Taken together, our data demonstrated that good functions of CD3(+)CD56(+) NKT-like cells in LTNPs likely occurred as a protective mechanism that slows down HIV disease progression.

Evolutionary Pattern of RDNA Following Polyploidy in Leymus (Triticeae: Poaceae)

Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24780748

Ribosomal ITS polymorphism and its ancestral genome origin of polyploid Leymus were examined to infer the evolutionary outcome of rDNA gene following allopolyploid speciation and to elucidate the geographic pattern of ITS variation. The results demonstrated that different polyploids have experienced varying fates, including maintenance or homogenization of divergent arrays, occurrence of chimeric repeats and potential pseudogenes. Our data suggested that (1) the Ns, P/F, and St genomic types in Leymus were originated from Psathyrostachys, Agropyron/Eremopyrum, and Pseudoroegneria, respectively; (2) the occurrence of a higher proportion of Leymus species with predominant uniparental rDNA type might associate with the segmental allopolyploid origin, nucleolar dominance of alloploids, and rapid radiation of Leymus; (3) maintenance of multiple parental ITS types in allopolyploid might result from long generation times associated to vegetative multiplication, number and chromosomal location of ribosomal loci and/or recurrent hybridization; (4) the rDNA genealogical structure of Leymus species might associate with the geographic origins; and (5) ITS sequence clade shared by Leymus species from Central Asia, North America, and Nordic might be an outcome of ancestral ITS homogenization. Our results shed new light on understanding evolutionary outcomes of rDNA following allopolyploid speciation and geographic isolation.

Relationship Between Periphyton Biomarkers and Trace Metals with the Responses to Environment Applying an Integrated Biomarker Response Index (IBR) in Estuaries

Ecotoxicology (London, England). May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24781213

Estuaries are under great anthropogenic pressure. The presence of contaminants such as trace metals, organics and organometallics in the Haihe basin, Baohai Bay China indicates a deterioration of environmental quality. In this study the ecological status of three estuaries in Haihe basin was evaluated in relation to the presence of trace metals. An integrated biomarker response index (IBR) method was applied that combined biomarker responses in natural periphyton present on surface sediment with general "stress index". Sediment samples were collected at 11 sites throughout three estuaries of Haihe basin (Luanhe, Haihe and Zhangweixin) during three seasons. The IBR values indicated that the temporal variation of biological status was autumn (3.35) < spring (3.38) < summer (4.07) (The higher the value, the worse the biological status), while the spatial variation was Zhangweixin (0.73) < Luanhe (3.31) < Haihe (6.96) in spring and autumn, and Luanhe (1.79) < Zhangweixin (3.64) < Haihe (7.69) in summer. The risk quotients of trace metals in sediment samples were calculated based on the corresponding Effects Rang Low values. The temporal variation of risk quotients was autumn (10.76) < spring (11.78) < summer (15.99), while the estuarine variation was Luanhe (8.47) < Zhangweixin (12.29) < Haihe (19.42). The IBR values and risk quotients were fitted into cubic regression equations. It is proven that the good assessment of periphyton integrated biomarker responses to biological status and contaminated risk in estuarine zones.

Combined Probiotic Bacteria Promotes Intestinal Epithelial Barrier Function in Interleukin-10-gene-deficient Mice

World Journal of Gastroenterology : WJG. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24782616

To investigate the protective effects of combinations of probiotic (Bifico) on interleukin (IL)-10-gene-deficient (IL-10 KO) mice and Caco-2 cell monolayers.

[Research on Night Visibility Estimation Method Based on Image Features of Dual Light Sources]

Guang Pu Xue Yu Guang Pu Fen Xi = Guang Pu. Jan, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24783521

Haze, rain and snow bring a lot of inconvenience in our daily life, especially produce serious potential safety hazard for night transport. In the present paper the authors propose the vision-based dual light sources visibility method to estimate night visibility. This method is significantly advantaged with wide range, high precision and low cost, and has a good robustness in many kinds of weather conditions. Firstly, the authors give the basic visibility estimation model under the atmosphere multiple scattering theory. Secondly, the authors propose the dual light sources method to remove the luminance fluctuations of light sources and the atmosphere light effect, and formulize the algorithm to accurately gain information of light sources from the dual light sources image. At last, the authors design the dual light sources system and conduct a long time experiments under various atmosphere conditions. The experiments show that, with the baseline of 35 m, the visibility range is up to 15 000 m, and relative error is below 20%. This method and system can satisfy the demand of meteorological department and transport agency.

Chemical Profile Analysis and Comparison of Two Versions of the Classic TCM Formula Danggui Buxue Tang by HPLC-DAD-ESI-IT-TOF-MSn

Molecules (Basel, Switzerland). 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24786849

Danggui Buxue Tang (DBT) is a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) formula primarily used to treat symptoms associated with menopause in women. Usually, DBT is composed of one portion of Radix Angelicae Sinensis (RAS) and five portions of Radix Astragali (RA). Clinically, Radix Hedysari (RH) is sometimes used by TCM physicians to replace RA in DBT. In order to verity whether the chemical constituents of the DBT1 (RA:RAS = 5:1, w/w) and DBT2 (RH:RAS = 5:1, w/w) share similarities the chemical profiles of the two DBTs crude extracts and urine samples were analyzed and compared with the aid of HPLC-DAD-ESI-IT-TOF-MSn, which determines the total ion chromatogram (TIC) and multi-stage mass spectra (MSn). Then, the DBT1 and DBT2 were identified and compared on the basis of the TIC and the MSn. In the first experiment (with crude extracts), 69 compounds (C1-C69) were identified from the DBT1; 46 compounds (c1-c46) were identified from the DBT2. In the second experiment(with urine samples), 44 compounds (M1-M44) were identified from the urine samples of rats that had been administered DBT1, and 34 compounds (m1-m34) were identified from the urine samples of rats that had been administered DBT2. Identification and comparison of the chemical compositions were carried out between the DBT1 and DBT2 of the crude extracts and urine samples respectively. Our results showed that the two crude extracts of the DBTs have quite different chemical profiles. The reasons for their differences were that the special astragalosides in DBT1 and the isoflavonoid glycosides formed the malonic acid esters undergo single esterification and acetyl esters undergo acetylation in DBT1. In contrast, the urine from DBT1-treated rats strongly resembled that of DBT2-treated rats. These metabolites originate mainly from formononetin, calycosin and their related glycosides, and they were formed mainly by the metabolic process of reduction, deglycosylation, demethylation, hydrogenation and sulfation. The HPLC-DAD-ESI-IT-TOF-MSn method was successfully applied for the rapid chemical profiles evaluation of two DBTs and their related urine samples.

Proteasome Inhibitor MG132 Enhances the Antigrowth and Antimetastasis Effects of Radiation in Human Nonsmall Cell Lung Cancer Cells

Tumour Biology : the Journal of the International Society for Oncodevelopmental Biology and Medicine. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24789436

The current treatment for advanced nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC) remains unsatisfactory due to resistance to chemotherapy and ionizing radiation. The ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) regulates multiple cellular processes that are crucial for the proliferation and survival of all kinds of cells. Carbobenzoxyl-leucinyl-leucinyl-leucinal-H (MG132), a specific and selective reversible inhibitor of the 26S proteasome, represents a novel approach for cancer therapy. However, whether MG132 can potentiate the effect of radiation against the growth and metastasis of NSCLC is not clear. We found that MG132 inhibited the proliferation of human NSCLC cell lines (A549 and H1299) in a dose- and time-dependent manner by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay. Then MG132 at a nontoxic dose (100 nM) was selected for following studies. Pretreatment of A549 and H1299 cells with 100 nM MG132 before ionizing radiation (IR) potentiated the anticancer effect of IR. Moreover, pretreatment with 100 nM MG132 before IR-enhanced radiation induced cell cycle arrest by decreased CyclinD1 but increased Wee1 expression in A549 and H1299 cells. In addition, pretreatment of MG132 combined with IR significantly suppressed cell migration and invasion abilities in NSCLC cell lines, which was accompanied by decreased expression of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 and MMP-9 in NSCLC cell lines. Taken together, our results demonstrate that MG132 enhances the antigrowth and antimetastatic effects of irradiation in NSCLC cells by modulating expression of cell cycle and invasion- related genes.

Cell-specific Translational Profiling in Acute Kidney Injury

The Journal of Clinical Investigation. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24789883

Aging Aggravates Nitrate-Mediated ROS/RNS Changes

Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24790702

Nitrates are the most frequently prescribed and utilized drugs worldwide. The elderly are a major population receiving nitrate therapy. Both nitrates and aging can increase in vivo reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS). To date, the effects of aging upon nitrate-induced ROS/RNS alteration are unknown. The present study tested the effects of aging upon nitrate-induced ROS/RNS alteration in vivo. 32 adults and 43 elderly unstable angina (UA) patients were subjected to 48 hours of isosorbide dinitrate intravenous injection (50  μ g/minutes) in this clinical study. Blood samples were obtained at baseline and conclusion. Outcome measures of oxidative stress included plasma malondialdehyde (MDA), myeloperoxidase (MPO), and reduced glutathione (GSH). Plasma concentrations of NOx and nitrotyrosine served as markers of RNS. Because of the significant differences in basic clinical characters between adults and the elderly, we designed an additional experiment determining ROS/RNS stress in rat cardiac tissue. Additionally, rat thoracic aortic NOS activity served as a marker indicating endothelial function. Our study demonstrated that nitrate therapy significantly increased in vivo ROS/RNS stress in the elderly compared to adult patients, confirmed by animal data. Decreased NOS activity was observed in old rats. Taken together, the present study's data suggests a synergism between nitrate treatment and the aging process.

Epigenetic Regulation of Putative Tumor Suppressor TGFBI in Human Leukemias

Chinese Medical Journal. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24791868

Both in vitro and in vivo data have demonstrated the TGFBI gene functions as a putative tumor suppressor and is frequently downregulated in human tumors of different histological types. The hypermethylation of the TGFBI promoter, as one of the main regulatory mechanisms, is associated with TGFBI silencing. In this study, we used a methylation-specific PCR (MSP) method to evaluate the methylation status of the TGFBI promoter in human leukemias.

Anti-neoplastic Activity of Low-dose Endothelial-monocyte Activating Polypeptide-II Results from Defective Autophagy and G2/M Arrest Mediated by PI3K/Akt/FoxO1 Axis in Human Glioblastoma Stem Cells

Biochemical Pharmacology. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24792437

Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a life-threatening brain tumor with fatal recurrence, for which glioblastoma stem cells (GSCs) are held responsible. Though endothelial-monocyte activating polypeptide-II (EMAP-II) has been confirmed as a possible antitumor agent that can induce apoptosis of endothelial cells and inhibit tumor angiogenesis, the direct cytotoxicity by EMAP-II on tumor cells and its underlying mechanism are largely unknown. In the present study, it was demonstrated that low-dose (0.05nM) EMAP-II reduces cell viability and mitochondrial membrane potential in vitro. Likewise, EMAP-II suppressed tumor growth in GSC-xenografted mice. Though no apoptosis was detected, all these antitumor effects were attenuated when GSCs were pretreated with 3-methyladenine (3-MA). Analysis of EMAP-II-treated GSCs exhibited the morphological and biochemical changes typical of autophagy, which was further shown to be defective. Moreover, EMAP-II was found to suppress tumor growth by inducing G2/M arrest in GSCs. Our data further showed that EMAP-II inhibited PI3K/Akt activation with concomitant induction of FoxO1 activation. FoxO1 knockdown significantly attenuated the induction of autophagy and G2/M arrest. Excessive accumulation of lipid droplets was intriguingly detected by transmission electron microscope, which was accompanied by autophagosomes. Further investigation indicated that the transcriptional regulation of Atg2B by FoxO1 was responsible for the induction of autophagy and formation of lipid droplets. These results suggest that EMAP-II is an effective anticancer agent for glioblastoma therapy, which can induce direct growth suppression in GSCs through defective autophagy and G2/M arrest mediated by the PI3K/Akt/FoxO1 axis.

Aptamer TY04 Inhibits the Growth of Multiple Myeloma Cells Via Cell Cycle Arrest

Tumour Biology : the Journal of the International Society for Oncodevelopmental Biology and Medicine. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24792887

The aptamer TY04 is a single-stranded DNA. However, its biological function has not been elucidated. Here, we found that TY04 specifically bound to multiple myeloma cells MM.1S, and some membrane proteins on the surface of MM.1S cells constituted the target molecules of TY04. TY04 inhibited the growth of multiple myeloma cell lines, induced cell cycle arrest in mitosis, and resulted in a significant accumulation of binucleated cells. Following TY04 treatment, a concomitant increase in CDK1 and cyclin B1 expression occurred. In addition, TY04 treatment also resulted in a significant downregulation of γ-tubulin. Considering the unique advantages of aptamers, TY04 shows great potential as a drug candidate to treat multiple myeloma.

(-)-Epigallocatechin-3-gallate Attenuated Myocardial Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Autophagy in Diabetic Goto-Kakizaki (GK) Rats

Free Radical Research. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24797301

Abstract Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a risk factor for heart disease. However, the mechanisms of T2DM involvement in cardiac complications are still unclear. In the present study, we investigated mitochondria-related mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of myocardial disorders in diabetic Goto-Kakizaki (GK) rats. We found that remarkable myocardial mitochondrial deficiency and dysfunction as well as oxidative stress occurred in the heart of GK rats. In addition, our results suggested that the loss of mitochondria was in response to elevated autophagy and upstream FoxO factors in diabetic myocardium. More importantly, (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a polyphenol derived from green tea, successfully improved mitochondrial function and autophagy in the heart of GK rats. Our findings revealed that diabetes-associated myocardial mitochondrial deficiency and dysfunction was associated with enhanced autophagy in myocardium, and EGCG might be a potential agent in preventing and treating myocardial disorders involved in diabetes.

Novel ShikoninDerivatives Targeting Tubulin As Anti-cancer Agents

Chemical Biology & Drug Design. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24797889

In this study, we report the identification of a new shikonin-phenoxyacetic acid derivative, as an inhibitor of tubulin. A series of compounds were prepared, among them, compound 16[(R) -1 - (5, 8- dihydroxy-1, 4- dioxo-1, 4- dihydronaphthalen-2-yl)-4-methylpent-3-enyl 2- (4- phenoxyphenyl) acetate] potently inhibited the function of microtubules, inducing cell growth inhibition, apoptosis of cancer cell lines in a concentration and time dependent manner. Molecular docking involving 16 at the vinblastine binding site of tubulin indicated that a phenoxy moiety interacted with tubulin via hydrogen bonding with asparaginate (Asn) and tyrosine (Tyr). Analysis of microtubules with confocal microscopy demonstrated that 16 altered the microtubule architecture and exhibited a significant reduction in microtubule density. Cell cycle assay further proved that HepG2 cells were blocked in G2/M phase.Our study provides a new, promising compound for the development of tubulin inhibitors by proposing a new target for the anti-cancer activity of shikonin. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Gynecologic Pain Related to Occupational Stress Among Female Factory Workers in Tianjin, China

International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health. Jan-Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24804338

Dysmenorrhea, dyspareunia, and non-cyclic pelvic pain are health concerns for factory workers in China and may be increased by occupational stress.

Five-year Change in Systolic Blood Pressure is Independently Associated with Carotid Atherosclerosis Progression: a Population-based Cohort Study

Hypertension Research : Official Journal of the Japanese Society of Hypertension. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24804610

The aim of this study was to investigate whether long-term changes in traditional risk factors affect the progression of carotid atherosclerosis in a Chinese population. This study included 1590 individuals (aged 56.9±8.1 years) with no evidence of carotid plaque at baseline (2002). In 2007, these individuals completed the second risk factors survey and underwent carotid plaque measurement. The incidence of carotid plaque and the total plaque area of maximum plaques (TPA) were used to evaluate the progression of carotid atherosclerosis. In addition to baseline age, systolic blood pressure (SBP), total cholesterol (TC), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), triglyceride (TG), common carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) and current smoking, a 5-year change in SBP was also associated with the incidence of carotid plaque (odds ratio=1.01, 95% confidence interval: 1.01-1.02, P=0.029). Furthermore, multiple linear regression analysis revealed that a 5-year change in SBP had a linear association with TPA after adjusting for baseline risk factors (standardized regression coefficient=0.071, P=0.014). TPA increased both by increasing baseline SBP and by a 5-year SBP change when adjusted for sex, baseline age, TC, HDL-C, CIMT and current smoking (P for trend <0.001 and 0.004). Our study demonstrates that a 5-year change in SBP is independently associated with the progression of carotid atherosclerosis in the Chinese population. These findings underline the importance of early detection and control of SBP for the prevention of atherosclerosis progression. The progression of atherosclerosis is not only associated with hypertension but can also progress silently with the development of SBP.Hypertension Research advance online publication, 8 May 2014; doi:10.1038/hr.2014.93.

Impact of Estrogen-related Receptor α on the Biological Characteristics of Rat Mandibular Condylar Chondrocytes

Molecular Medicine Reports. Jul, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24805131

It is well‑known that estrogen-related receptor α (ERRα) affects numerous metabolic pathways and biological functions in the body, although the function of ERRα in the mandibular condylar chondrocytes (MCCs) of the temporomandibular joint remains unclear. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of ERRα on the biological characteristics of MCCs in female rats. Immunofluorescent staining was used to observe the expression level and distribution of ERRα in MCCs and tissues. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) was performed to detect the impact of estrogen intervention on the biological characteristics of female rat MCCs and ERRα expression levels. Liposome transfection and XCT‑790 were used to overexpress and inhibit ERRα expression, respectively, and then qPCR was performed to detect changes in the biological characteristics of MCCs. ERRα expression was detected in the nucleus and cytoplasm of rat MCCs. 17‑β estradiol (E2) (10‑8 M) increased the mRNA and protein expression levels of ERRα, Sox9, GDF‑5 and aromatase during in vitro MCC cultivation. In addition, E2 affected MCC proliferation through the regulation of ERRα expression levels. Overexpression of ERRα positively regulated the mRNA and protein expression levels of Sox9 and GDF‑5, but did not exhibit a significant effect on the mRNA and protein expression levels of aromatase and Col2a1. In conclusion, ERRα exhibited an important regulatory role in the proliferation and differentiation of female Sprague‑Dawley rat MCCs in vitro through regulating Sox9 and GDF-5.

Histopathologic Validation of 3'-deoxy-3'-(18)F-fluorothymidine PET for Detecting Tumor Repopulation During Fractionated Radiotherapy of Human FaDu Squamous Cell Carcinoma in Nude Mice(18)F-FLT PET Repopulation -->

Radiotherapy and Oncology : Journal of the European Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24813091

FaDu human squamous cell carcinoma (FaDu-hSCC) demonstrates accelerated tumor repopulation during fractionated irradiation with pathological validation (Ki-67 and BrdUrd makers) in a xenograft model system. However, these and other functional assays must be performed ex vivo and post hoc. We propose a novel, in vivo, real-time assay utilizing (18)F-FLT PET.

A Novel Potentiometric Sensor Based on a Poly(anilineboronic Acid)/graphene Modified Electrode for Probing Sialic Acid Through Boronic Acid-diol Recognition

Biosensors & Bioelectronics. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24813912

A novel potentiometric approach was described for probing sialic acid (SA) using a poly(anilineboronic acid)/graphene modified glassy carbon (GC) electrode. The proposed electrode was prepared by electrodeposition of reduced graphene oxide (ERGO) at a GC electrode and then coated with a poly(anilineboronic acid) (PABA) film by electropolymerization of its monomer. Principle of SA detection at the PABA/ERGO/GC electrode was ascribed to a reversible and covalent boronic acid-diol binding which was sensitive to the electrochemical potential of the prepared sensor. The graphene layer introduced on the electrode surface was shown to dramatically improve the sensitivity of the sensor response. Under optimum conditions, the proposed sensor exhibited low detection limit of 0.8μM with a wide linear range of 2μM-1.38mM, high stability, good regeneration, and remarkable selectivity. For the analysis of SA in human blood serum, the high accuracy and good recoveries revealed the great potential in the practical applications.

Endocrine Disrupting Effects of Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane Analogues on Gonadotropin Hormones in Pituitary Gonadotrope Cells

Environmental Toxicology and Pharmacology. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24814263

It has been shown that exposure to dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) analogues leads to disharmony of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). However, the effects and mechanisms of DDT analogues on the expression of gonadotropin genes (FSHβ, LHβ and Cgα), which is the rate-limiting step of FSH and LH biosynthesis, remain unknown. In this study, we assessed the effects of p,p'-DDT, o,p'-DDT, p,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (p,p'-DDE) and methoxychlor (MXC) on gonadotropin genes expression and hormones synthesis in gonadotrope cells. p,p'-DDT and MXC at test concentrations ranging from 10(-9) to 10(-7)mol/L, stimulated gonadotropin genes expression and hormones synthesis in a dose-dependent manner. The activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) was required for the induction of gonadotropin genes expression and hormones synthesis by p,p'-DDT or MXC exposure. This study showed for the first time that p,p'-DDT and MXC regulated gonadotropin genes expression and hormones synthesis through ERK pathway in gonadotrope cells.

Impact of Cr(3+) Pollution on Microbial Characteristics in Purple Paddy Soil

Pakistan Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24816694

Impact of Cr(3+) pollution on soil microbial quantity, enzyme activity and biological activity in purple paddy soil were studied under incubation conditions. The results showed that amounts of all tested microbes and enzyme activities in soil were inhibited by low Cr(3+) concentration (200mg/kg). After 7-day incubation, sulfate-reducing activity, methanogen activity, denitrifying activity and anaerobic nitrogen-fixing activity in soil were reduced by 34%, 66%, 98% and 65% respectively. Amounts of soil microbes were remarkably inhibited with medium Cr(3+) concentration (400mg/kg), all with reduction of more than 50%; and all tested soil biological activity was almost recovered in the fourth week except soil denitrifying activity. Activities of urease, invertase, neutral phosphatase and catalase were decreased by 60%, 21%, 59% and 42%, respectively. With high Cr(3+) concentration (1600mg/kg), amounts and activities of tested microbes had only about 1% of that with control. As calculated from the regression equation, the ED50 (ecological dose) values of activities of soil urease, invertase and catalase were around 800mg/kg; the ED50 values of soil sulfate-reducing activity, methanogen activity and anaerobic nitrogen-fixing activity were also around 800mg/kg with an exception of soil denitrifying activity which ranged 35 to 39 mg/kg. According to the Standards of National Soil Environmental Quality in China and their sensitivities to 400mg/kg Cr(3+) concentration, quantity of denitrifying bacteria, urease activity and denitrifying activity could be selected as indicators of early warning for Cr(3+) pollution in purple paddy soil.

Epitaxial Superlattices with Titanium Nitride As a Plasmonic Component for Optical Hyperbolic Metamaterials

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24821762

Titanium nitride (TiN) is a plasmonic material having optical properties resembling gold. Unlike gold, however, TiN is complementary metal oxide semiconductor-compatible, mechanically strong, and thermally stable at higher temperatures. Additionally, TiN exhibits low-index surfaces with surface energies that are lower than those of the noble metals which facilitates the growth of smooth, ultrathin crystalline films. Such films are crucial in constructing low-loss, high-performance plasmonic and metamaterial devices including hyperbolic metamaterials (HMMs). HMMs have been shown to exhibit exotic optical properties, including extremely high broadband photonic densities of states (PDOS), which are useful in quantum plasmonic applications. However, the extent to which the exotic properties of HMMs can be realized has been seriously limited by fabrication constraints and material properties. Here, we address these issues by realizing an epitaxial superlattice as an HMM. The superlattice consists of ultrasmooth layers as thin as 5 nm and exhibits sharp interfaces which are essential for high-quality HMM devices. Our study reveals that such a TiN-based superlattice HMM provides a higher PDOS enhancement than gold- or silver-based HMMs.

[Serum Total Cholesterol Change from 1992 to 2007 in the General Population from Chinese Multi-provincial Cohort Study]

Zhonghua Xin Xue Guan Bing Za Zhi. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24831481

To describe the changes of serum total cholesterol (TC) and the prevalence of hypercholesterolemia from 1992 to 2007 in the general population from Chinese multi-provincial cohort study (CMCS).

Lung Ultrasound for the Diagnosis of Severe Neonatal Pneumonia

Chest. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24833216

Lung ultrasound is useful for the diagnosis of pneumonia in children and adults. This study investigated the lung ultrasound findings in severe neonatal pneumonia.

Fast, Free-breathing, in Vivo Fetal Imaging Using Time-resolved 3D MRI Technique: Preliminary Results

Quantitative Imaging in Medicine and Surgery. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24834424

Fetal MR imaging is very challenging due to the movement of fetus and the breathing motion of the mother. Current clinical protocols involve quick 2D scouting scans to determine scan plane and often several attempts to reorient the scan plane when the fetus moves. This makes acquisition of fetal MR images clinically challenging and results in long scan times in order to obtain images that are of diagnostic quality. Compared to 2D imaging, 3D imaging of the fetus has many advantages such as higher SNR and ability to reformat images in multiple planes. However, it is more sensitive to motion and challenging for fetal imaging due to irregular fetal motion in addition to maternal breathing and cardiac motion. This aim of this study is to develop a fast 3D fetal imaging technique to resolve the challenge of imaging the moving fetus. This 3D imaging sequence has multi-echo radial sampling in-plane and conventional Cartesian encoding through plane, which provides motion robustness and high data acquisition efficiency. The utilization of a golden-ratio based projection profile allows flexible time-resolved image reconstruction with arbitrary temporal resolution at arbitrary time points as well as high signal-to-noise and contrast-to-noise ratio. The nice features of the developed image technique allow the 3D visualization of the movements occurring throughout the scan. In this study, we applied this technique to three human subjects for fetal MRI and achieved promising preliminary results of fetal brain, heart and lung imaging.

The Association Between Within-Visit Blood Pressure Variability and Carotid Artery Atherosclerosis in General Population

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24835667

To determine whether within-visit blood pressure (BP) variability based on three measurements over minutes is associated with increased carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) and plaque in a general population.

Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) Fibrosis Score Predicts 6.6 Years Overall Mortality of Chinese Patients with NAFLD

Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology & Physiology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24837195

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) fibrosis score (NFS) has emerged as a useful predictor for a long-term outcome in NAFLD patients. We evaluated the predictive performance of NFS for overall mortality in a Chinese population with NAFLD. All ultrasonography-diagnosed NAFLD patients at our center between 1996 and 2011 were retrospectively recruited. The outcome was obtained by interview and the causes of death were confirmed by medical records. Area under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) was used to determine the predictive accuracy of NFS, BARD, FIB-4 and aspartate aminotransferase/platelet ratio index (APRI) for mortality. Data from total of 180 eligible patients (median age 39 years; 96 males) were analyzed, with 12 deaths over a median follow-up of 6.6 (range: 0.5-14.8) -year. By Cox model analysis, NFS as a continuous variable other than 3 other scoring systems was identified as the only predictor for all-cause mortality [hazard ratio 2.743, 95% confidential interval (CI) 1.670~4.504]. NFS yielded the highest AUC of 0.828 (95% CI 0.728~0.928, p<0.05), followed by FIB-4, APRI and BARD with their AUCs of 0.806, 0.732 and 0.632 respectively (p<0.05, except for BARD). Collectively, NFS is a useful predictor of 6.6-year all-cause mortality for Chinese patients with NAFLD. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

A Broadly Reactive Monoclonal Antibody Detects Multiple Genotypes of Hepatitis B Virus X Protein

Archives of Virology. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24838854

A highly specific and broadly reactive monoclonal antibody against hepatitis B virus X (HBx) protein was developed that detected, in both immunoblotting and immunofluorescence, HBx proteins of seven of the eight currently known genotypes of HBV, which were overexpressed in cultured cells. Evaluation of HBx expression levels in cultured hepatocytes using this monoclonal antibody showed that cells transiently and stably transfected with HBV genomes expressed far less HBx protein than cells transiently transfected with an HBx overexpression plasmid routinely used for studying HBx functions. The availability of such sensitive and broadly reactive monoclonal antibodies against HBx will enable more-quantitative studies of HBx functions.

Src/caveolin-1-regulated EGFR Activation Antagonizes TRAIL-induced Apoptosis in Gastric Cancer Cells

Oncology Reports. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24840271

Gastric cancer cells are insensitive to tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL), and we recently showed that lipid raft-regulated epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) activation antagonized TRAIL-induced apoptosis. However, it is not clear whether caveolin-1, an essential structural constituent of lipid rafts, regulates lipid raft-mediated EGFR activation. We report here that TRAIL induced the translocation of EGFR into lipid rafts and its activation in gastric cancer SGC-7901 and MGC-803 cells. Simultaneously, caveolin-1 was also activated. Knockdown of caveolin-1 partially prevented EGFR activation and increased TRAIL sensitivity. Moreover, TRAIL promoted the translocation of Src into lipid rafts and its activation, as well as the interaction of Src with both EGFR and caveolin-1. A Src inhibitor prevented these interactions and the activation of caveolin-1 and EGFR, and thus enhanced TRAIL-induced apoptosis. These data suggest that Src activates EGFR through the interaction of both Src-EGFR and Src-caveolin-1, and then antagonizes TRAIL-induced apoptosis in gastric cancer cells.

[Effects of Basic Fibroblast Growth Factor Composite Sponge Treated Collagen on Vascularization of Orbital Implants: a Histopathologic Analysis]

Zhonghua Bing Li Xue Za Zhi Chinese Journal of Pathology. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24842018

To evaluate the effect of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) treated collagen composite sponge on vascularization of HA orbital implants.

The Prevalence of Serum Specific IgE to Superantigens in Asthma and Allergic Rhinitis Patients

Allergy, Asthma & Immunology Research. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24843803

Staphylococcus aureus is the most common bacterium present in upper respiratory tract, and the toxins it produced are involved in allergic inflammation pathogenesis. In this study, we investigated the clinical significance of IgE in association with staphylococcal superantigens in allergic asthma with rhinitis (BAwAR) and allergic rhinitis alone (AR). We recruited 100 patients with BAwAR (group I), 100 patients with AR (group II), and 88 healthy controls (group III). Patients were clinically diagnosed by physicians, and were sensitized to house dust mites. Specific IgE antibodies to staphylococcal superantigen A (SEA), B (SEB), and toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1) were measured using the ImmunoCAP system. Other clinical parameters were retrospectively analyzed. All specific IgE antibodies to SEA, SEB, and TSST-1 were detected most frequently in group I (22%, 21%, and 27%), followed by group II (11%, 14%, and 21%) and group III (4.5%, 3.4%, and 2.3%). Absolute values of serum specific IgE to SEA, SEB, and TSST-1 were also significantly higher in group I (0.300±1.533 kU/L, 0.663±2.933 kU/L, and 0.581±1.931 kU/L) and group II (0.502±2.011 kU/L, 0.695±3.337 kU/L, and 1.067±4.688 kU/L) compared to those in group III (0.03±0.133 kU/L, 0.03±0.14 kU/L, and 0.028±0.112 kU/L). The prevalence of serum specific IgE to SEA was significantly higher in group I compared to group II (P=0.025). Blood eosinophil counts were significantly higher in patients with specific IgE to SEA or SEB, and higher serum levels of specific IgE to house dust mites were noted in patients with specific IgE to TSST-1. In conclusion, the present study suggested that IgE responses to staphylococcal superantigens are prevalent in the sera of both BAwAR and AR patients. This may contribute to an augmented IgE response to indoor allergens and eosinophilic inflammation.

Developmental Gene Expression Provides Clues to Relationships Between Sponge and Eumetazoan Body Plans

Nature Communications. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24844197

Elucidation of macroevolutionary transitions between diverse animal body plans remains a major challenge in evolutionary biology. We address the sponge-eumetazoan transition by analyzing expression of a broad range of eumetazoan developmental regulatory genes in Sycon ciliatum (Calcispongiae). Here we show that many members of surprisingly numerous Wnt and Tgfβ gene families are expressed higher or uniquely in the adult apical end and the larval posterior end. Genes involved in formation of the eumetazoan endomesoderm, such as β-catenin, Brachyury and Gata, as well as germline markers Vasa and Pl10, are expressed during formation and maintenance of choanoderm, the feeding epithelium of sponges. Similarity in developmental gene expression between sponges and eumetazoans, especially cnidarians, is consistent with Haeckel's view that body plans of sponges and cnidarians are homologous. These results provide a framework for further studies aimed at deciphering ancestral developmental regulatory networks and their modifications during animal body plans evolution.

Highly Accelerated Aortic 4D Flow MR Imaging with Variable-Density Random Undersampling

Magnetic Resonance Imaging. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24846341

To investigate an effective time-resolved variable-density random undersampling scheme combined with an efficient parallel image reconstruction method for highly accelerated aortic 4D flow MR imaging with high reconstruction accuracy.

Investigation of Genes Within Copy Number Variation Regions in Pig Chromosome 13 and Analysis of the Genetic Law

Yi Chuan = Hereditas / Zhongguo Yi Chuan Xue Hui Bian Ji. Apr, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24846980

Copy number variation (CNV), referring to a genome structure variation, has attracted researchers' great interests. Thirty-two CNV regions (CNV region, CNVR) have been detected on chromosome 13 in our previous work. In order to detect the genes located in these CNVRs, we first obtained the annotated information from Ensembl database, and searched gene functional enrichments using DAVID online tools. In the 32 CNVRs, a total of 236 genes were identified, in which 169 genes were annotated. Gene Ontology (GO) analysis revealed that these genes mainly participate in proteolysis, cell adhesion, and macromolecular catabolic process. To study the genetic law of these CNVs, we chose the RCAN1 (regulators of calcineurin 1) gene as the candidate. We quantified the copy number of RCAN1 gene in 38 Laiwu pigs by using QPCR method, and analyzed the genetic laws in three Laiwu families including 15 pigs. QPCR results showed that both duplication and deletion occurred in RCAN1 gene among Laiwu pigs and the heredity mode corresponds with Mendelian genetic law.


Nephrology, Dialysis, Transplantation : Official Publication of the European Dialysis and Transplant Association - European Renal Association. May, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24849992

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