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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
A Price to Pay for Relaxed Substrate Specificity: A Comparative Kinetic Analysis of the Class II Lanthipeptide Synthetases ProcM and HalM2.
J. Am. Chem. Soc.
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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Lanthipeptides are a class of ribosomally synthesized and ¬posttranslationally modified ¬peptide natural products (RiPPs) that typically harbor multiple intramolecular thioether linkages. For class II lanthipeptides, these crosslinks are installed in a multistep reaction pathway by a single enzyme (LanM). The multi-functional nature of LanMs and the manipulability of their genetically encoded peptide substrates (LanAs) make LanM/LanA systems promising targets for the engineering of new antibacterial compounds. Here, we report the development of a semi-quantitative mass spectrometry-based assay for kinetic characterization of LanM-catalyzed reactions. The assay was used to conduct a comparative kinetic analysis of two LanM enzymes (HalM2 and ProcM) that exhibit drastically different substrate selectivity. Numerical simulation of the kinetic data was used to develop models for the multistep HalM2- and ProcM-catalyzed reactions. These models illustrate that HalM2 and ProcM have markedly different catalytic efficiencies for the various reactions they catalyze. HalM2, which is responsible for the biosynthesis of a single compound (the Hal? subunit of the lantibiotic haloduracin), catalyzes reactions with higher catalytic efficiency than ProcM, which modifies 29 different ProcA precursor peptides during prochlorosin biosynthesis. In particular, the rates of thioether ring formation are drastically reduced in ProcM, likely because this enzyme is charged with installing a variety of lanthipeptide ring architectures in its prochlorosin products. Thus, ProcM appears to pay a kinetic price for its relaxed substrate specificity. In addition, our kinetic models suggest that conformational sampling of the LanM:LanA Michaelis complex could play an important role in the kinetics of LanA maturation.
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Long-Term Safety and Efficacy of Factor IX Gene Therapy in Hemophilia B.
N. Engl. J. Med.
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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Background In patients with severe hemophilia B, gene therapy that is mediated by a novel self-complementary adeno-associated virus serotype 8 (AAV8) vector has been shown to raise factor IX levels for periods of up to 16 months. We wanted to determine the durability of transgene expression, the vector dose-response relationship, and the level of persistent or late toxicity. Methods We evaluated the stability of transgene expression and long-term safety in 10 patients with severe hemophilia B: 6 patients who had been enrolled in an initial phase 1 dose-escalation trial, with 2 patients each receiving a low, intermediate, or high dose, and 4 additional patients who received the high dose (2×10(12) vector genomes per kilogram of body weight). The patients subsequently underwent extensive clinical and laboratory monitoring. Results A single intravenous infusion of vector in all 10 patients with severe hemophilia B resulted in a dose-dependent increase in circulating factor IX to a level that was 1 to 6% of the normal value over a median period of 3.2 years, with observation ongoing. In the high-dose group, a consistent increase in the factor IX level to a mean (±SD) of 5.1±1.7% was observed in all 6 patients, which resulted in a reduction of more than 90% in both bleeding episodes and the use of prophylactic factor IX concentrate. A transient increase in the mean alanine aminotransferase level to 86 IU per liter (range, 36 to 202) occurred between week 7 and week 10 in 4 of the 6 patients in the high-dose group but resolved over a median of 5 days (range, 2 to 35) after prednisolone treatment. Conclusions In 10 patients with severe hemophilia B, the infusion of a single dose of AAV8 vector resulted in long-term therapeutic factor IX expression associated with clinical improvement. With a follow-up period of up to 3 years, no late toxic effects from the therapy were reported. (Funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and others; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00979238 .).
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Evaluating Public Housing Residents for Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices Following Dengue Prevention Outreach in Key West, Florida.
Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis.
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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Abstract Background: In 2009-2010, 93 cases of dengue were identified in Key West, Florida. This was the first outbreak of autochthonous transmission of dengue in Florida since 1934. In response to this outbreak, a multifaceted public education outreach campaign was launched. The aim of this study is to compare dengue prevention knowledge, attitudes, perceptions, and prevention practices among residents of subsidized public housing to the general population in Key West and to assess whether there were barriers preventing effective outreach from reaching specific vulnerable populations. Methods: A randomized population-based evaluation of knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors toward dengue prevention consisting of 521 separate household interviews was undertaken in July of 2011. A subset analysis was performed on interviews collected from 28 public housing units within four subsidized public housing complexes. Analysis was performed to determine whether knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors exhibited by public housing residents differed from the non-public housing study population. Results: Public housing residents recalled fewer outreach materials (p=0.01) and were 3.4 times (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.4-8.3) more likely not to recall any outreach materials. Public housing residents were less likely to correctly identify how dengue transmission occurs (61% vs. 89%), where mosquitoes lay their eggs (54% vs. 85%), or to identify any signs or symptoms related to dengue (36% vs. 64%). Public housing residents were less likely to perform dengue prevention practices such as removing standing water or always using air conditioning. Conclusions: Examination of public housing residents identified an at-risk population that recalled less exposure to outreach materials and had less knowledge about dengue infection and prevention than the randomized study population. This provides public health systems the opportunity to target or modify future health messages and interventions to this group. Differences identified in the demographics of this population suggest that alternative methods or non-English materials may be required to reach desired outcomes.
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Genetic Basis for Clinical Response to CTLA-4 Blockade in Melanoma.
N. Engl. J. Med.
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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Background Immune checkpoint inhibitors are effective cancer treatments, but molecular determinants of clinical benefit are unknown. Ipilimumab and tremelimumab are antibodies against cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen 4 (CTLA-4). Anti-CTLA-4 treatment prolongs overall survival in patients with melanoma. CTLA-4 blockade activates T cells and enables them to destroy tumor cells. Methods We obtained tumor tissue from patients with melanoma who were treated with ipilimumab or tremelimumab. Whole-exome sequencing was performed on tumors and matched blood samples. Somatic mutations and candidate neoantigens generated from these mutations were characterized. Neoantigen peptides were tested for the ability to activate lymphocytes from ipilimumab-treated patients. Results Malignant melanoma exomes from 64 patients treated with CTLA-4 blockade were characterized with the use of massively parallel sequencing. A discovery set consisted of 11 patients who derived a long-term clinical benefit and 14 patients who derived a minimal benefit or no benefit. Mutational load was associated with the degree of clinical benefit (P=0.01) but alone was not sufficient to predict benefit. Using genomewide somatic neoepitope analysis and patient-specific HLA typing, we identified candidate tumor neoantigens for each patient. We elucidated a neoantigen landscape that is specifically present in tumors with a strong response to CTLA-4 blockade. We validated this signature in a second set of 39 patients with melanoma who were treated with anti-CTLA-4 antibodies. Predicted neoantigens activated T cells from the patients treated with ipilimumab. Conclusions These findings define a genetic basis for benefit from CTLA-4 blockade in melanoma and provide a rationale for examining exomes of patients for whom anti-CTLA-4 agents are being considered. (Funded by the Frederick Adler Fund and others.).
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Ordered, adherent layers of nanofibers enabled by supramolecular interactions.
J Mater Chem B Mater Biol Med
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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Aligned nanofibrous substrates can be created by electrospinning, but methods for creating multilamellar structures of aligned fibers are limited. Here, apposed nanofibrous scaffolds with pendant ?-cyclodextrin (CD) were adhered together by adamantane (Ad) modified hyaluronic acid, exploiting the guest-host interactions of CD and Ad for macroscopic assembly. Stable user-defined multi-layered scaffolds were formed for cell culture or tissue engineering.
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Practice patterns of post-radical prostatectomy incontinence surgery in Ontario.
Can Urol Assoc J
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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We assess the practice patterns of artificial urinary sphincter (AUS) and urethral sling insertion after radical prostatectomy (RP) from a large population-based cohort.
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Peripheral ?-Defensins 1 and 2 are Elevated in Alzheimer's Disease.
J. Alzheimers Dis.
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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Biomarkers enabling the preclinical identification of Alzheimer's disease (AD) remain one of the major unmet challenges in the field. The blood cellular fractions offer a viable alternative to current cerebrospinal fluid and neuroimaging modalities. The current study aimed to replicate our earlier reports of altered binding within the AD-affected blood cellular fraction to copper-loaded immobilized metal affinity capture (IMAC) arrays. IMAC and anti-amyloid-? (A?) antibody arrays coupled with mass spectrometry were used to analyze blood samples collected from 218 participants from within the AIBL Study of Aging. Peripheral A? was fragile and prone to degradation in the AIBL samples, even when stored at -80°C. IMAC analysis of the AIBL samples lead to the isolation and identification of alpha-defensins 1 and 2 at elevated levels in the AD periphery, validating earlier findings. Alpha-defensins 1 and 2 were elevated in AD patients indicating that an inflammatory phenotype is present in the AD periphery; however, peripheral A? levels are required to supplement their prognostic power.
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A Computational Study of the Effect of Glyoxal - Sulfate Clustering on the Henry's Law Coefficient of Glyoxal.
J Phys Chem A
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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We have used quantum chemical methods to investigate the molecular mechanism behind the recently reported (C. J. Kampf et al., Environ. Sci. Technol. 2013 47, 4236-4244) strong dependence of the Henry's law coefficient of glyoxal (C2O2H2) on the sulfate concentration of the aqueous phase. While the glyoxal molecule interacts only weakly with sulfate, its hydrated forms (C2O3H4 and C2O4H6) form strong complexes with sulfate, displacing water molecules from the solvation shell and increasing the uptake of glyoxal into sulfate-containing aqueous solutions, including sulfate-containing aerosol particles. This promotes the participation of glyoxal in reactions leading to secondary organic aerosol formation, especially in regions with high sulfate concentrations. We used our computed equilibrium constants for the complexation reactions to assess the magnitude of the Henry's law coefficient enhancement, and found it to be in reasonable agreement with experimental results. This indicates that the complexation of glyoxal hydrates with sulfate can explain the observed uptake enhancement.
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CO tolerance of Pt and PtSn intermetallic electrocatalysts on synthetically modified reduced graphene oxide supports.
Dalton Trans
PUBLISHED: 11-20-2014
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Pt and PtSn intermetallic nanoparticle (NP) catalysts were grown directly on various reduced graphene oxide (rGO) supports and were characterized by a combination of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopic (XPS), Raman microscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) studies. Electrochemical CO stripping and rotating disk electrochemical (RDE) experiments showed the four rGO-PtSn catalysts to be superior to the four rGO-Pt catalysts for CO and CO-H2 electrooxidation in acidic solutions regardless of the rGO support, in agreement with earlier reports on PtSn NP electrocatalysts. For the four rGO-Pt catalysts, the rGO support causes a 70 mV spread in CO oxidation peak potential (?Epeak) and a 200 mV spread in CO-H2 electrooxidation onset. The more oxygenated graphenes show the lowest CO oxidation potentials and the best CO tolerance. For the four rGO-PtSn intermetallic catalysts, a ?160 mV spread in CO-H2 electrooxidation onset is observed. With the exception of the nitrogen-doped graphene (NGO), a similar trend in enhanced CO electrooxidation properties with increasing oxygen content in the rGO support is observed. The NGO-PtSn electrocatalyst was superior to the other rGO-PtSn catalysts and showed the largest improvement in CO tolerance relative to the pure Pt system. The origin of this enhancement appears to stem from the unique rGO-PtSn support interaction in this system. These results are discussed in the context of recent theoretical and experimental studies in the literature.
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Structure Activity Relationships of ?v Integrin Antagonists for Pulmonary Fibrosis by Variation in Aryl Substituents.
ACS Med Chem Lett
PUBLISHED: 11-13-2014
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Antagonism of ?v?6 is emerging as a potential treatment of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis based on strong target validation. Starting from an ?v?3 antagonist lead and through simple variation in the nature and position of the aryl substituent, the discovery of compounds with improved ?v?6 activity is described. The compounds also have physicochemical properties commensurate with oral bioavailability and are high quality starting points for a drug discovery program. Compounds 33S and 43E1 are pan ?v antagonists having ca. 100 nM potency against ?v?3, ?v?5, ?v?6, and ?v?8 in cell adhesion assays. Detailed structure activity relationships with these integrins are described which also reveal substituents providing partial selectivity (defined as at least a 0.7 log difference in pIC50 values between the integrins in question) for ?v?3 and ?v?5.
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Coinfection with Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Trichomonas vaginalis: a cross-sectional analysis of positivity and risk factors in remote Australian Aboriginal communities.
Sex Transm Infect
PUBLISHED: 10-28-2014
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To determine the co-occurrence and epidemiological relationships of Chlamydia trachomatis (CT), Neisseria gonorrhoeae (NG) and Trichomonas vaginalis (TV) in a high-prevalence setting in Australia.
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Is response to price equal for those with higher alcohol consumption?
Eur J Health Econ
PUBLISHED: 10-27-2014
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To determine if taxation policies that increase the price of alcohol differentially reduce alcohol consumption for heavy drinkers in Australia.
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MicroRNA silencing for cancer therapy targeted to the tumour microenvironment.
Nature
PUBLISHED: 10-02-2014
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MicroRNAs are short non-coding RNAs expressed in different tissue and cell types that suppress the expression of target genes. As such, microRNAs are critical cogs in numerous biological processes, and dysregulated microRNA expression is correlated with many human diseases. Certain microRNAs, called oncomiRs, play a causal role in the onset and maintenance of cancer when overexpressed. Tumours that depend on these microRNAs are said to display oncomiR addiction. Some of the most effective anticancer therapies target oncogenes such as EGFR and HER2; similarly, inhibition of oncomiRs using antisense oligomers (that is, antimiRs) is an evolving therapeutic strategy. However, the in vivo efficacy of current antimiR technologies is hindered by physiological and cellular barriers to delivery into targeted cells. Here we introduce a novel antimiR delivery platform that targets the acidic tumour microenvironment, evades systemic clearance by the liver, and facilitates cell entry via a non-endocytic pathway. We find that the attachment of peptide nucleic acid antimiRs to a peptide with a low pH-induced transmembrane structure (pHLIP) produces a novel construct that could target the tumour microenvironment, transport antimiRs across plasma membranes under acidic conditions such as those found in solid tumours (pH approximately 6), and effectively inhibit the miR-155 oncomiR in a mouse model of lymphoma. This study introduces a new model for using antimiRs as anti-cancer drugs, which can have broad impacts on the field of targeted drug delivery.
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Cannabidiol improves vasorelaxation in Zucker diabetic fatty rats through cyclooxygenase activation.
J. Pharmacol. Exp. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 09-11-2014
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Cannabidiol (CBD) decreases insulitis, inflammation, neuropathic pain, and myocardial dysfunction in preclinical models of diabetes. We recently showed that CBD also improves vasorelaxation in the Zucker diabetic fatty (ZDF) rat, and the objective of the present study was to establish the mechanisms underlying this effect. Femoral arteries from ZDF rats and ZDF lean controls were isolated, mounted on a myograph, and incubated with CBD (10 ?M) or vehicle for 2 hours. Subsequent vasorelaxant responses were measured in combination with various interventions. Prostaglandin metabolites were detected using enzyme immunoassay. Direct effects of CBD on cyclooxygenase (COX) enzyme activity were measured by oxygraph assay. CBD enhanced the maximum vasorelaxation to acetylcholine (ACh) in femoral arteries from ZDF lean rats (P < 0.01) and especially ZDF rats (P < 0.0001). In ZDF arteries, this enhancement persisted after cannabinoid receptor (CB) type 1, endothelial CB, or peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-? antagonism but was inhibited by CB2 receptor antagonism. CBD also uncovered a vasorelaxant response to a CB2 agonist not previously observed. The CBD-enhanced ACh response was endothelium-, nitric oxide-, and hydrogen peroxide-independent. It was, however, COX-1/2- and superoxide dismutase-dependent, and CBD enhanced the activity of both purified COX-1 and COX-2. The CBD-enhanced ACh response in the arteries was inhibited by a prostanoid EP4 receptor antagonist. Prostaglandin E2 metabolite levels were below the limits of detection, but 6-keto prostaglandin F1 ? was decreased after CBD incubation. These data show that CBD exposure enhances the ability of arteries to relax via enhanced production of vasodilator COX-1/2-derived products acting at EP4 receptors.
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The proto-oncogene PBF binds p53 and is associated with prognostic features in colorectal cancer.
Mol. Carcinog.
PUBLISHED: 09-08-2014
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The PTTG1-binding factor (PBF) is a transforming gene capable of eliciting tumor formation in xenograft models. However, the precise role of PBF in tumorigenesis and its prognostic value as a cancer biomarker remain largely uncharacterised, particularly in malignancies outside the thyroid. Here, we provide the first evidence that PBF represents a promising prognostic marker in colorectal cancer. Examination of a total of 39 patients demonstrated higher PBF expression at both the mRNA (P?=?0.009) and protein (P??90%; P?
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The Opposites Attract Study of viral load, HIV treatment and HIV transmission in serodiscordant homosexual male couples: design and methods.
BMC Public Health
PUBLISHED: 09-04-2014
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Studies in heterosexual HIV serodiscordant couples have provided critical evidence on the role of HIV treatments and undetectable viral load in reducing the risk of HIV transmission. There is very limited data on the risk of transmission from anal sex in homosexual male serodiscordant couples.
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Decreased management of genital warts in young women in australian general practice post introduction of national HPV vaccination program: results from a nationally representative cross-sectional general practice study.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 09-02-2014
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Since the introduction of Australia's human papillomavirus vaccination program, the management rate of genital warts in sexual health clinics and private hospitals has decreased in women of vaccine-eligible age. However, most genital warts in Australia are managed in general practice. This study examines whether a similar decrease occurred in Australian general practice after the introduction of the program.
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Synergistic tumor suppression by combined inhibition of telomerase and CDKN1A.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PUBLISHED: 07-14-2014
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Tumor suppressor p53 plays an important role in mediating growth inhibition upon telomere dysfunction. Here, we show that loss of the p53 target gene cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1A (CDKN1A, also known as p21(WAF1/CIP1)) increases apoptosis induction following telomerase inhibition in a variety of cancer cell lines and mouse xenografts. This effect is highly specific to p21, as loss of other checkpoint proteins and CDK inhibitors did not affect apoptosis. In telomerase, inhibited cell loss of p21 leads to E2F1- and p53-mediated transcriptional activation of p53-upregulated modulator of apoptosis, resulting in increased apoptosis. Combined genetic or pharmacological inhibition of telomerase and p21 synergistically suppresses tumor growth. Furthermore, we demonstrate that simultaneous inhibition of telomerase and p21 also suppresses growth of tumors containing mutant p53 following pharmacological restoration of p53 activity. Collectively, our results establish that inactivation of p21 leads to increased apoptosis upon telomerase inhibition and thus identify a genetic vulnerability that can be exploited to treat many human cancers containing either wild-type or mutant p53.
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A Reversible and Selective Inhibitor of Monoacylglycerol Lipase Ameliorates Multiple Sclerosis.
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. Engl.
PUBLISHED: 07-13-2014
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Monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) is the enzyme responsible for the inactivation of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). MAGL inhibitors show analgesic and tissue-protecting effects in several disease models. However, the few efficient and selective MAGL inhibitors described to date block the enzyme irreversibly, and this can lead to pharmacological tolerance. Hence, additional classes of MAGL inhibitors are needed to validate this enzyme as a therapeutic target. Here we report a potent, selective, and reversible MAGL inhibitor (IC50 =0.18 ?M) which is active in vivo and ameliorates the clinical progression of a multiple sclerosis (MS) mouse model without inducing undesirable CB1 -mediated side effects. These results support the interest in MAGL as a target for the treatment of MS.
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Effects of two different specific neck exercise interventions on palmitoylethanolamide and stearoylethanolamide concentrations in the interstitium of the trapezius muscle in women with chronic neck shoulder pain.
Pain Med
PUBLISHED: 07-04-2014
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Chronic neck/shoulder pain (CNSP) is one of the most common pain conditions. The understanding of mechanisms, including the peripheral balance between nociceptive and antinociceptive processes, is incomplete. N-acylethanolamines (NAEs) are a class of endogenous compounds that regulate inflammation and pain. The aim of this study was to investigate the levels of two NAEs: the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor type-? ligand palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) and stearoylethanolamide (SEA) in the muscle interstitium of the trapezius muscle in women with CNSP randomized to two different neck specific training programs and in a healthy pain-free control group (CON).
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Novel tracer method to measure isotopic labeled gas-phase nitrous acid (HO15NO) in biogeochemical studies.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 07-01-2014
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Gaseous nitrous acid (HONO), the protonated form of nitrite, contributes up to ?60% to the primary formation of hydroxyl radical (OH), which is a key oxidant in the degradation of most air pollutants. Field measurements and modeling studies indicate a large unknown source of HONO during daytime. Here, we developed a new tracer method based on gas-phase stripping-derivatization coupled to liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) to measure the 15N relative exceedance, ?(15N), of HONO in the gas-phase. Gaseous HONO is quantitatively collected and transferred to an azo dye, purified by solid phase extraction (SPE), and analyzed using high performance liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS). In the optimal working range of ?(15N)=0.2-0.5, the relative standard deviation of ?(15N) is <4%. The optimum pH and solvents for extraction by SPE and potential interferences are discussed. The method was applied to measure HO15NO emissions from soil in a dynamic chamber with and without spiking 15) labeled urea. The identification of HO15NO from soil with 15N urea addition confirmed biogenic emissions of HONO from soil. The method enables a new approach of studying the formation pathways of HONO and its role for atmospheric chemistry (e.g., ozone formation) and environmental tracer studies on the formation and conversion of gaseous HONO or aqueous NO2- as part of the biogeochemical nitrogen cycle, e.g., in the investigation of fertilization effects on soil HONO emissions and microbiological conversion of NO2- in the hydrosphere.
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Three causes of variation in the photochemical reflectance index (PRI) in evergreen conifers.
New Phytol.
PUBLISHED: 06-03-2014
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The photochemical reflectance index (PRI) reflects diurnal xanthophyll cycle activity and is also influenced by seasonally changing carotenoid : Chl pigment ratios. Both changing pigment pools and xanthophyll cycle activity contribute to photoprotection in evergreen conifers exposed to boreal winters, but they operate over different timescales, and their relative contribution to the PRI signal has often been unclear. To clarify these responses and their contribution to the PRI signal, leaf PRI, pigment composition, temperature and irradiance were monitored over 2 yr for two evergreen conifers (Pinus contorta and Pinus ponderosa) in a boreal climate. PRI was affected by three distinct processes operating over different timescales and exhibiting contrasting spectral responses. Over the 2 yr study period, the greatest change in PRI resulted from seasonally changing carotenoid : Chl pigment ratios, followed by a previously unreported shifting leaf albedo during periods of deep cold. Remarkably, the smallest change was attributable to the xanthophyll cycle. To properly distinguish these three effects, interpretation of PRI must consider temporal context, physiological responses to evolving environmental conditions, and spectral response. Consideration of the separate mechanisms affecting PRI over different timescales could greatly improve efforts to monitor changing photosynthetic activity using optical remote sensing.
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Developing an alcohol policy assessment toolkit: application in the western Pacific.
Bull. World Health Organ.
PUBLISHED: 05-14-2014
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To demonstrate the development and feasibility of a tool to assess the adequacy of national policies aimed at reducing alcohol consumption and related problems.
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The influence of monoacylglycerol lipase inhibition upon the expression of epidermal growth factor receptor in human PC-3 prostate cancer cells.
BMC Res Notes
PUBLISHED: 05-05-2014
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It has been reported that direct activation of the cannabinoid CB1 receptor in epidermal growth factor (EGR)-stimulated PC-3 prostate cancer cells results in an anti-proliferative effect accompanied by a down-regulation of EGF receptors (EGFR). In the present study, we investigated whether similar effects are seen following inhibition of the endocannabinoid hydrolytic enzyme monoacylglycerol lipase (MGL).
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The cytotoxic and pro-apoptotic activities of the novel fluoropyrimidine F10 towards prostate cancer cells are enhanced by Zn(2+) -chelation and inhibiting the serine protease Omi/HtrA2.
Prostate
PUBLISHED: 04-21-2014
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Intracellular Zn(2+) levels decrease during prostate cancer progression and agents that modulate intracellular Zn(2+) are cytotoxic to prostate cancer cells by an incompletely described mechanism. F10 is a new polymeric fluoropyrimidine drug-candidate that displays strong activity with minimal systemic toxicity in pre-clinical models of prostate cancer and other malignancies. The effects of exogenous Zn(2+) or Zn(2+) chelation for enhancing F10 cytotoxicity are investigated as is the role of Omi/HtrA2, a serine protease that promotes apoptosis in response to cellular stress.
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When two is better than one: differences in characteristics of women using condoms only compared to those using condoms combined with an effective contraceptive.
J Womens Health (Larchmt)
PUBLISHED: 04-15-2014
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There remain high rates of unintended pregnancy around the world. Adding an effective contraceptive to those who currently only use male condoms may reduce these rates. The aim of this study is to identify the prevalence of and factors associated with the combination use of an effective contraception with male condoms in sexually active women who are already using male condoms.
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Decreased serum zinc is an effect of ageing and not Alzheimer's disease.
Metallomics
PUBLISHED: 03-29-2014
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We examined the distribution of zinc in the periphery (erythrocytes and serum) in a large, well-characterised cohort, the Australian Imaging, Biomarkers and Lifestyle (AIBL) study, in order to determine if there is systemic perturbation in zinc homeostasis in Alzheimer's disease (AD). We observed an age dependent decrease in serum zinc of approximately 0.4% per year. When correcting for the age dependent decline in serum zinc no significant difference between healthy controls (HC), mildly cognitively impaired (MCI) or AD subjects was observed.
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Testosterone deficiency syndrome and cardiovascular health: An assessment of beliefs, knowledge and practice patterns of general practitioners and cardiologists in Victoria, BC.
Can Urol Assoc J
PUBLISHED: 03-01-2014
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Testosterone deficiency syndrome (TDS) has been shown to be an independent cardiovascular risk factor and a predisposing factor for metabolic syndrome. As general practitioners and cardiologists primarily care for these patients, we sought to assess their knowledge, beliefs and practice patterns with respect to TDS and cardiac health.
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Potential upstream regulators of cannabinoid receptor 1 signaling in prostate cancer: a Bayesian network analysis of data from a tissue microarray.
Prostate
PUBLISHED: 02-25-2014
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The endocannabinoid system regulates cancer cell proliferation, and in prostate cancer a high cannabinoid CB1 receptor expression is associated with a poor prognosis. Down-stream mediators of CB1 receptor signaling in prostate cancer are known, but information on potential upstream regulators is lacking.
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Effects of dietary glucose and fructose upon cannabinoid CB1 receptor functionality in the rat brain: a pilot study.
Life Sci.
PUBLISHED: 02-20-2014
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A high consumption of fructose leads not only to peripheral changes in insulin sensitivity and vascular function, but also to central changes in several brain regions. Given the role of the endogenous cannabinoid system in the control of energy intake, we undertook a pilot study to determine whether a high fructose diet produced changes in brain CB1 receptor functionality.
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Nitration of the birch pollen allergen Bet v 1.0101: efficiency and site-selectivity of liquid and gaseous nitrating agents.
J. Proteome Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-19-2014
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Nitration of the major birch pollen allergen Bet v 1 alters the immune responses toward this protein, but the underlying chemical mechanisms are not yet understood. Here we address the efficiency and site-selectivity of the nitration reaction of recombinant protein samples of Bet v 1.0101 with different nitrating agents relevant for laboratory investigations (tetranitromethane, TNM), for physiological processes (peroxynitrite, ONOO(-)), and for the health effects of environmental pollutants (nitrogen dioxide and ozone, O?/NO?). We determined the total tyrosine nitration degrees (ND) and the NDs of individual tyrosine residues (NDY). High-performance liquid chromatography coupled to diode array detection and HPLC coupled to high-resolution mass spectrometry analysis of intact proteins, HPLC coupled to tandem mass spectrometry analysis of tryptic peptides, and amino acid analysis of hydrolyzed samples were performed. The preferred reaction sites were tyrosine residues at the following positions in the polypeptide chain: Y83 and Y81 for TNM, Y150 for ONOO(-), and Y83 and Y158 for O?/NO?. The tyrosine residues Y83 and Y81 are located in a hydrophobic cavity, while Y150 and Y158 are located in solvent-accessible and flexible structures of the C-terminal region. The heterogeneous reaction with O?/NO? was found to be strongly dependent on the phase state of the protein. Nitration rates were about one order of magnitude higher for aqueous protein solutions (?20% per day) than for protein filter samples (?2% per day). Overall, our findings show that the kinetics and site-selectivity of nitration strongly depend on the nitrating agent and reaction conditions, which may also affect the biological function and adverse health effects of the nitrated protein.
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The PTTG1-binding factor (PBF/PTTG1IP) regulates p53 activity in thyroid cells.
Endocrinology
PUBLISHED: 02-07-2014
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The PTTG1-binding factor (PBF/PTTG1IP) has an emerging repertoire of roles, especially in thyroid biology, and functions as a protooncogene. High PBF expression is independently associated with poor prognosis and lower disease-specific survival in human thyroid cancer. However, the precise role of PBF in thyroid tumorigenesis is unclear. Here, we present extensive evidence demonstrating that PBF is a novel regulator of p53, a tumor suppressor protein with a key role in maintaining genetic stability, which is infrequently mutated in differentiated thyroid cancer. By coimmunoprecipitation and proximity-ligation assays, we show that PBF binds specifically to p53 in thyroid cells and significantly represses transactivation of responsive promoters. Further, we identify that PBF decreases p53 stability by enhancing ubiquitination, which appears dependent on the E3 ligase activity of Mdm2. Impaired p53 function was evident in a transgenic mouse model with thyroid-specific PBF overexpression (transgenic PBF mice), which had significantly increased genetic instability as indicated by fluorescent inter simple sequence repeat-PCR analysis. Consistent with this, approximately 40% of all DNA repair genes examined were repressed in transgenic PBF primary cultures, including genes with critical roles in maintaining genomic integrity such as Mgmt, Rad51, and Xrcc3. Our data also revealed that PBF induction resulted in up-regulation of the E2 enzyme Rad6 in murine thyrocytes and was associated with Rad6 expression in human thyroid tumors. Overall, this work provides novel insights into the role of the protooncogene PBF as a negative regulator of p53 function in thyroid tumorigenesis, in which PBF is generally overexpressed and p53 mutations are rare compared with other tumor types.
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Site-specific DNA-doxorubicin conjugates display enhanced cytotoxicity to breast cancer cells.
Bioconjug. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 02-06-2014
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Doxorubicin (Dox) is widely used for breast cancer treatment but causes serious side effects including cardiotoxicity that may adversely impact patient lifespan even if treatment is successful. Herein, we describe selective conjugation of Dox to a single site in a DNA hairpin resulting in a highly stable complex that enables Dox to be used more effectively. Selective conjugation of Dox to G15 in the hairpin loop was verified using site-specific labeling with [2-(15)N]-2'-deoxyguanosine in conjunction with [(1)H-(15)N] 2D NMR, while 1:1 stoichiometry for the conjugate was validated by ESI-QTOF mass spectrometry and UV spectroscopy. Molecular modeling indicated covalently bound Dox also intercalated into the stem of the hairpin and stability studies demonstrated the resulting Dox-conjugated hairpin (DCH) complex had a half-life >30 h, considerably longer than alternative covalent and noncovalent complexes. Secondary conjugation of DCH with folic acid (FA) resulted in increased internalization into breast cancer cells. The dual conjugate, DCH-FA, can be used for safer and more effective chemotherapy with Dox and this conjugation strategy can be expanded to include additional anticancer drugs.
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Spatio-Temporal Patterns of Major Bacterial Groups in Alpine Waters.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Glacial alpine landscapes are undergoing rapid transformation due to changes in climate. The loss of glacial ice mass has directly influenced hydrologic characteristics of alpine floodplains. Consequently, hyporheic sediment conditions are likely to change in the future as surface waters fed by glacial water (kryal) become groundwater dominated (krenal). Such environmental shifts may subsequently change bacterial community structure and thus potential ecosystem functioning. We quantitatively investigated the structure of major bacterial groups in glacial and groundwater-fed streams in three alpine floodplains during different hydrologic periods. Our results show the importance of several physico-chemical variables that reflect local geological characteristics as well as water source in structuring bacterial groups. For instance, Alpha-, Betaproteobacteria and Cytophaga-Flavobacteria were influenced by pH, conductivity and temperature as well as by inorganic and organic carbon compounds, whereas phosphorous compounds and nitrate showed specific influence on single bacterial groups. These results can be used to predict future bacterial group shifts, and potential ecosystem functioning, in alpine landscapes under environmental transformation.
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Methodological Challenges in Collecting Social and Behavioural Data Regarding the HIV Epidemic among Gay and Other Men Who Have Sex with Men in Australia.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Behavioural surveillance and research among gay and other men who have sex with men (GMSM) commonly relies on non-random recruitment approaches. Methodological challenges limit their ability to accurately represent the population of adult GMSM. We compared the social and behavioural profiles of GMSM recruited via venue-based, online, and respondent-driven sampling (RDS) and discussed their utility for behavioural surveillance.
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Assessing impacts of unconventional natural gas extraction on microbial communities in headwater stream ecosystems in Northwestern Pennsylvania.
Front Microbiol
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have increased dramatically in Pennsylvania Marcellus shale formations, however the potential for major environmental impacts are still incompletely understood. High-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene was performed to characterize the microbial community structure of water, sediment, bryophyte, and biofilm samples from 26 headwater stream sites in northwestern Pennsylvania with different histories of fracking activity within Marcellus shale formations. Further, we describe the relationship between microbial community structure and environmental parameters measured. Approximately 3.2 million 16S rRNA gene sequences were retrieved from a total of 58 samples. Microbial community analyses showed significant reductions in species richness as well as evenness in sites with Marcellus shale activity. Beta diversity analyses revealed distinct microbial community structure between sites with and without Marcellus shale activity. For example, operational taxonomic units (OTUs) within the Acetobacteracea, Methylocystaceae, Acidobacteriaceae, and Phenylobacterium were greater than three log-fold more abundant in MSA+ sites as compared to MSA- sites. Further, several of these OTUs were strongly negatively correlated with pH and positively correlated with the number of wellpads in a watershed. It should be noted that many of the OTUs enriched in MSA+ sites are putative acidophilic and/or methanotrophic populations. This study revealed apparent shifts in the autochthonous microbial communities and highlighted potential members that could be responding to changing stream conditions as a result of nascent industrial activity in these aquatic ecosystems.
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ErbB2 receptor immunoreactivity in prostate cancer: relationship to the androgen receptor, disease severity at diagnosis and disease outcome.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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ErbB2 is a member of the epidermal growth factor family of tyrosine kinases that is centrally involved in the pathogenesis of prostate cancer and several studies have reported that a high expression of this protein has prognostic value. In the present study, we have investigated whether tumour ErbB2 immunoreactivity (ErbB2-IR) has clinically useful prognostic value, i.e. that it provides additional prognostic information to that provided by routine clinical tests (Gleason score, tumour stage).
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Involvement of fatty acid amide hydrolase and fatty acid binding protein 5 in the uptake of anandamide by cell lines with different levels of fatty acid amide hydrolase expression: a pharmacological study.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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The endocannabinoid ligand anandamide (AEA) is removed from the extracellular space by a process of cellular uptake followed by metabolism. In many cells, such as the RBL-2H3 cell line, inhibition of FAAH activity reduces the observed uptake, indicating that the enzyme regulates uptake by controlling the intra- : extracellular AEA concentration gradient. However, in other FAAH-expressing cells, no such effect is seen. It is not clear, however, whether these differences are methodological in nature or due to properties of the cells themselves. In consequence, we have reinvestigated the role of FAAH in gating the uptake of AEA.
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Inhibition of endocannabinoid metabolism by the metabolites of ibuprofen and flurbiprofen.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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In addition to their effects upon prostaglandin synthesis, the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs ibuprofen and flurbiprofen inhibit the metabolism of the endocannabinoids 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and anandamide (AEA) by cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), respectively. Here, we investigated whether these effects upon endocannabinoid metabolism are shared by the main metabolites of ibuprofen and flurbiprofen.
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Ketoconazole inhibits the cellular uptake of anandamide via inhibition of FAAH at pharmacologically relevant concentrations.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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The antifungal compound ketoconazole has, in addition to its ability to interfere with fungal ergosterol synthesis, effects upon other enzymes including human CYP3A4, CYP17, lipoxygenase and thromboxane synthetase. In the present study, we have investigated whether ketoconazole affects the cellular uptake and hydrolysis of the endogenous cannabinoid receptor ligand anandamide (AEA).
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The inside story. Physicians views on digital ano-rectal examination for anal cancer screening of HIV positive men who have sex with men.
J Med Screen
PUBLISHED: 12-06-2013
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Anal cancer is relatively common amongst HIV positive men who have sex with men (MSM), but little is known about the anal cancer screening practices of HIV physicians, and whether digital ano-rectal examination (DARE) is utilized for this. To determine the practice of anal cancer screening among HIV physicians, and to identify any barriers for implementing DARE as a method for anal cancer screening.
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Sustained delivery of proangiogenic microRNA-132 by nanoparticle transfection improves endothelial cell transplantation.
FASEB J.
PUBLISHED: 11-12-2013
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Transplantation of endothelial cells (ECs) for therapeutic vascularization or tissue engineering is a promising method for increasing tissue perfusion. Here, we report on a new approach for enhanced EC transplantation using targeted nanoparticle transfection to deliver proangiogenic microRNA-132 (miR-132) to cultured ECs before their transplantation, thereby sensitizing cells to the effects of endogenous growth factors. We synthesized biodegradable PLGA polymer nanoparticles (NPs) that were loaded with miR-132 and coated with cyclic RGD (cRGD) peptides that target integrin ?v?3 expressed on cultured human umbilical vein ECs (HUVECs), increasing NP uptake through clathrin-coated pits. Unlike previously reported NPs for miR delivery, these NPs slowly release RNA for several weeks. The endocytosed NPs remain in clathrin-coated vesicles from which they mediate intracellular delivery of siRNA or miRNA. Transfection of HUVECs with miR-132 enhances growth factor-induced proliferation and migration in 2D culture, producing a 1.8- and 5-fold increase, respectively. However, while the effects of conventional transfection were short-lived, NP transfection produced protein knockdown and biological effects that were significantly longer in duration (?6 d). Transfection of HUVECs with miR-132 NP resulted in a 2-fold increase in the number of microvessels per square millimeter compared to lipid after transplantation into immunodeficient mice and led to a higher number of mural cell-invested vessels than control transfection. These data suggest that sustained delivery of miR-132 encapsulated in a targeted biodegradable polymer NP is a safe and efficient strategy to improve EC transplantation and vascularization.-Devalliere, J., Chang, W. G., Andrejecsk, J. W., Abrahimi, P., Cheng, C. J., Jane-wit, D., Saltzman, W. M., Pober, J. S. Sustained delivery of proangiogenic microRNA-132 by nanoparticle transfection improves endothelial cell transplantation.
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Chiral 1,3,4-Oxadiazol-2-ones as Highly Selective FAAH Inhibitors.
J. Med. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 10-22-2013
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In the present study, identification of chiral 1,3,4-oxadiazol-2-ones as potent and selective FAAH inhibitors has been described. The separated enantiomers showed clear differences in the potency and selectivity toward both FAAH and MAGL. Additionally, the importance of the chirality on the inhibitory activity and selectivity was proven by the simplification approach by removing a methyl group at the 3-position of the 1,3,4-oxadiazol-2-one ring. The most potent compound of the series, the S-enantiomer of 3-(1-(4-isobutylphenyl)ethyl)-5-methoxy-1,3,4-oxadiazol-2(3H)-one (JZP-327A, 51), inhibited human recombinant FAAH (hrFAAH) in the low nanomolar range (IC50 = 11 nM), whereas its corresponding R-enantiomer 52 showed only moderate inhibition toward hrFAAH (IC50 = 0.24 ?M). In contrast to hrFAAH, R-enantiomer 52 was more potent in inhibiting the activity of hrMAGL compared to S-enantiomer 51 (IC50 = 4.0 ?M and 16% inhibition at 10 ?M, respectively). The FAAH selectivity of the compound 51 over the supposed main off-targets, MAGL and COX, was found to be >900-fold. In addition, activity-based protein profiling (ABPP) indicated high selectivity over other serine hydrolases. Finally, the selected S-enantiomers 51, 53, and 55 were shown to be tight binding, slowly reversible inhibitors of the hrFAAH.
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Rational design of network properties in guest-host assembled and shear-thinning hyaluronic acid hydrogels.
Biomacromolecules
PUBLISHED: 10-14-2013
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Shear-thinning hydrogels afford direct injection or catheter delivery to tissues without potential premature gel formation and delivery failure or the use of triggers such as chemical initiators or heat. However, many shear-thinning hydrogels require long reassembly times or exhibit rapid erosion. We developed a shear-thinning hyaluronic acid (HA) hydrogel based on the guest-host interactions of adamantane modified HA (guest macromer, Ad-HA) and ?-cyclodextrin modified HA (host macromer, CD-HA). The ability of the guest and host molecules to interact with their counterpart following conjugation to HA was confirmed by (1)H NMR spectroscopy and was similar to that of the native complex. Mixing of Ad-HA and CD-HA resulted in rapid formation of a hydrogel composed of guest-host bonds. The hydrogel physical properties, including mechanics and flow characteristics, were dependent on cross-link density and network structure, which were controlled through macromer concentration, the extent of guest macromer modification, and the molar ratio of guest and host functional groups. The guest-host assembly mechanism permitted both shear-thinning behavior for ease of injection and near-instantaneous reassembly for material retention at the target sight. The hydrogel erosion and release of a model biomolecule were also dependent on design parameters and were sustained for over 60 days. These hydrogels show potential as a minimally invasive injectable hydrogel for biomedical applications.
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The SHED-IT Weight Loss Maintenance trial protocol: A randomised controlled trial of a weight loss maintenance program for overweight and obese men.
Contemp Clin Trials
PUBLISHED: 09-16-2013
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Despite short-term efficacy, many weight loss studies demonstrate poor long-term results and have difficulty recruiting men. Cost-effective treatments that help men achieve long-term weight loss are required. Using a two-phase, assessor-blinded, parallel-group randomised controlled trial design this study will test the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a male-only weight loss maintenance intervention. In Phase I (3months) 209 men received the SHED-IT Weight Loss Program. In Phase II (12months) 92 men who lost 4kg or more were randomised to either (i) a maintenance group who received the 6-month, gender-tailored SHED-IT Weight Loss Maintenance Program, which included no face-to-face contact (n=47), or (ii) a self-help control group (n=45). Randomisation was stratified by weight loss (4kg-7.4kg, ?7.5kg) and BMI (<30kg/m(2), ?30kg/m(2)). Assessments occurred at study entry (start of Phase I), baseline (start of Phase II), 6 months (post-test) and will occur at 12 months (follow-up; primary endpoint). The primary outcome is weight change in Phase II (i.e. from baseline at 12months after randomization). Secondary outcomes include waist circumference (umbilicus and narrowest), blood pressure, body composition, objectively measured physical activity, sedentary time, portion size, dietary intake, quality of life, depressive symptoms, and behavioural cognitions. Costing data will be collected for cost-effectiveness analysis. Generalised linear mixed models (intention-to-treat) will assess outcomes for treatment (maintenance vs. control), time (baseline, 6-month and 12-month) and the treatment-by-time interaction. This will be the first study to evaluate a male-only, gender-targeted weight loss maintenance program. Results will provide evidence regarding feasible and theoretically-driven obesity treatments for men with potential for long-term impact and widespread dissemination. Trial Registration: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12612000749808).
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Does increasing community and liquor licensees awareness, police activity, and feedback reduce alcohol-related violent crime? A benefit-cost analysis.
Int J Environ Res Public Health
PUBLISHED: 08-15-2013
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Approximately half of all alcohol-related crime is violent crime associated with heavy episodic drinking. Multi-component interventions are highly acceptable to communities and may be effective in reducing alcohol-related crime generally, but their impact on alcohol-related violent crime has not been examined. This study evaluated the impact and benefit-cost of a multi-component intervention (increasing community and liquor licensees awareness, police activity, and feedback) on crimes typically associated with alcohol-related violence. The intervention was tailored to weekends identified as historically problematic in 10 experimental communities in NSW, Australia, relative to 10 control ones. There was no effect on alcohol-related assaults and a small, but statistically significant and cost-beneficial, effect on alcohol-related sexual assaults: a 64% reduction in in the experimental relative to control communities, equivalent to five fewer alcohol-related sexual assaults, with a net social benefit estimated as AUD$3,938,218. The positive benefit-cost ratio was primarily a function of the value that communities placed on reducing alcohol-related harm: the intervention would need to be more than twice as effective for its economic benefits to be comparable to its costs. It is most likely that greater reductions in crimes associated with alcohol-related violence would be achieved by a combination of complementary legislative and community-based interventions.
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Regulation of pituitary tumor transforming gene (PTTG) expression and phosphorylation in thyroid cells.
Endocrinology
PUBLISHED: 07-18-2013
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Human pituitary tumor transforming gene (hPTTG) is a multifunctional proto-oncogene implicated in the initiation and progression of several tumors. Phosphorylation of hPTTG is mediated by cyclin-dependent kinase 2 (CDC2), whereas cellular expression is regulated by specificity protein 1 (SP1). The mechanisms underlying hPTTG propagation of aberrant thyroid cell growth have not been fully defined. We set out to investigate the interplay between hPTTG and growth factors, as well as the effects of phosphorylation and SP1 regulation on hPTTG expression and function. In our study, epidermal growth factor (EGF), TGF?, and IGF-1 induced hPTTG expression and phosphorylation in thyroid cells, which was associated with activation of MAPK and phosphoinositide 3-kinase. Growth factors induced hPTTG independently of CDC2 and SP1 in thyroid carcinoma cells. Strikingly, CDC2 depletion in TPC-1 cells resulted in enhanced expression and phosphorylation of hPTTG and reduced cellular proliferation. In reciprocal experiments, hPTTG overexpression induced EGF, IGF-1, and TGF? mRNAs in primary human thyrocytes. Treatment of primary human thyrocytes with conditioned media derived from hPTTG-transfected cells resulted in autocrine upregulation of hPTTG protein, which was ameliorated by growth factor depletion or growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors. A transgenic murine model of thyroid targeted hPTTG overexpression (hPTTG-Tg) (FVB/N strain, both sexes) demonstrated smaller thyroids with reduced cellular proliferation and enhanced secretion of Egf. In contrast, Pttg(-/-) knockout mice (c57BL6 strain, both sexes) showed reduced thyroidal Egf mRNA expression. These results define hPTTG as having a central role in thyroid autocrine signaling mechanisms via growth factors, with profound implications for promotion of transformed cell growth.
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Determination of nitration degrees for the birch pollen allergen Bet v 1.
Anal Bioanal Chem
PUBLISHED: 06-10-2013
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Nitration of tyrosine residues in the major birch pollen allergen Bet v 1 may alter the allergenic potential of the protein. The kinetics and mechanism of the nitration reaction, however, have not yet been well characterized. To facilitate further investigations, an efficient method to quantify the nitration degree (ND) of small samples of Bet v 1 is required. Here, we present a suitable method of high-performance liquid chromatography coupled to a diode array detector (HPLC-DAD) that can be photometrically calibrated using the amino acids tyrosine (Tyr) and nitrotyrosine (NTyr) without the need for nitrated protein standards. The new method is efficient and in agreement with alternative methods based on hydrolysis and amino acid analysis of tetranitromethane (TNM)-nitrated Bet v 1 standards as well as samples from nitration experiments with peroxynitrite. The results confirm the applicability of the new method for the investigation of the reaction kinetics and mechanism of protein nitration.
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Regeneration of mammalian cochlear and vestibular hair cells through Hes1/Hes5 modulation with siRNA.
Hear. Res.
PUBLISHED: 05-16-2013
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The Notch pathway is a cell signaling pathway determining initial specification and subsequent cell fate in the inner ear. Previous studies have suggested that new hair cells (HCs) can be regenerated in the inner ear by manipulating the Notch pathway. In the present study, delivery of siRNA to Hes1 and Hes5 using a transfection reagent or siRNA to Hes1 encapsulated within poly(lactide-co-glycolide acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles increased HC numbers in non-toxin treated organotypic cultures of cochleae and maculae of postnatal day 3 mouse pups. An increase in HCs was also observed in cultured cochleae and maculae of mouse pups pre-conditioned with a HC toxin (4-hydroxy-2-nonenal or neomycin) and then treated with the various siRNA formulations. Treating cochleae with siRNA to Hes1 associated with a transfection reagent or siRNA to Hes1 delivered by PLGA nanoparticles decreased Hes1 mRNA and up-regulated Atoh1 mRNA expression allowing supporting cells (SCs) to acquire a HC fate. Experiments using cochleae and maculae of p27(kip1)/-GFP transgenic mouse pups demonstrated that newly generated HCs trans-differentiated from SCs. Furthermore, PLGA nanoparticles are non-toxic to inner ear tissue, readily taken up by cells within the tissue of interest, and present a synthetic delivery system that is a safe alternative to viral vectors. These results indicate that when delivered using a suitable vehicle, Hes siRNAs are potential therapeutic molecules that may have the capacity to regenerate new HCs in the inner ear and possibly restore human hearing and balance function.
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Estimated impacts of alternative Australian alcohol taxation structures on consumption, public health and government revenues.
Med. J. Aust.
PUBLISHED: 05-06-2013
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To examine health and economic implications of modifying taxation of alcohol in Australia.
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Prevalence of and characteristics associated with use of withdrawal among women in Victoria, Australia.
Perspect Sex Reprod Health
PUBLISHED: 04-30-2013
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Popularly regarded as "ineffective," withdrawal is a form of contraception largely ignored by health -professionals. Thus, little is known of the prevalence and correlates of its use.
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Inhibition of fatty acid amide hydrolase and cyclooxygenase by the N-(3-methylpyridin-2-yl)amide derivatives of flurbiprofen and naproxen.
Eur. J. Pharmacol.
PUBLISHED: 04-25-2013
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Inhibitors of the metabolism of the endogenous cannabinoid ligand anandamide by fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) reduce the gastric damage produced by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents and synergise with them in experimental pain models. This motivates the design of compounds with joint FAAH/cyclooxygenase (COX) inhibitory activity. Here we present data on the N-(3-methylpyridin-2-yl)amide derivatives of flurbiprofen and naproxen (Flu-AM1 and Nap-AM1, respectively) with respect to their properties towards these two enzymes. Flu-AM1 and Nap-AM1 inhibited FAAH-catalysed hydrolysis of [(3)H]anandamide by rat brain homogenates with IC50 values of 0.44 and 0.74µM. The corresponding values for flurbiprofen and naproxen were 29 and >100µM, respectively. The inhibition by Flu-AM1 was reversible, mixed-type, with K(i)slope and K(i)intercept values of 0.21 and 1.4µM, respectively. Flurbiprofen and Flu-AM1 both inhibited COX in the same manner with the order of potencies COX-2 vs. 2-arachidonoylglycerol>COX-1 vs. arachidonic acid>COX-2 vs. arachidonic acid with flurbiprofen being approximately 2-3 fold more potent than Flu-AM1 in the assays. Nap-AM1 was a less potent inhibitor of COX. Flu-AM1 at low micromolar concentrations inhibited the FAAH-driven uptake of [(3)H]anandamide into RBL2H3 basophilic leukaemia cells in vitro, but did not penetrate the brain in vivo sufficiently to block the binding of [(18)F]DOPP to brain FAAH. It is concluded that Flu-AM1 is a dual-action inhibitor of FAAH and COX that may be useful in exploring the optimal balance of effects on these two enzyme systems in producing peripheral alleviation of pain and inflammation in experimental models.
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Initial testing (stage 1) of the histone deacetylase inhibitor, quisinostat (JNJ-26481585), by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program.
Pediatr Blood Cancer
PUBLISHED: 04-22-2013
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Quisinostat (JNJ-26481585) is a second-generation pyrimidyl-hydroxamic acid histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor with high cellular potency towards Class I and II HDACs. Quisinostat was selected for clinical development as it showed prolonged pharmacodynamic effects in vivo and demonstrated improved single agent antitumoral efficacy compared to other analogs.
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Increases in newly acquired HIV infections in Victoria, Australia: epidemiological evidence of successful prevention?
Sex Health
PUBLISHED: 04-20-2013
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Background Rates of newly acquired HIV notifications provide useful data for monitoring transmission trends. Methods: We describe 10-year (2001-10) trends in newly acquired HIV notifications in Victoria, Australia. We also examine recent trends in HIV testing and incidence and risk behaviours among gay and other men who have sex with men (MSM) attending four high MSM caseload clinics. Results: Between 2001 and 2010 there was a significant increasing linear trend in newly acquired HIV that was driven primarily by increases between 2009-2010. MSM accounted for 85% of newly acquired HIV notifications. Between 2007-10, the total number of HIV tests per year at the high caseload clinics increased 41% among MSM and HIV incidence declined by 52%; reported risk behaviours remained relatively stable among these MSM. Conclusion: More newly acquired HIV notifications may reflect recent increased testing among MSM; continued scrutiny of surveillance data will assess the sustained effectiveness of testing as prevention, health promotion and the contribution of risk and testing behaviours to HIV surveillance outcomes.
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Effective Henrys law partitioning and the salting constant of glyoxal in aerosols containing sulfate.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 04-15-2013
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The reversible partitioning of glyoxal was studied in simulation chamber experiments for the first time by time-resolved measurements of gas-phase and particle-phase concentrations in sulfate-containing aerosols. Two complementary methods for the measurement of glyoxal particle-phase concentrations are compared: (1) an offline method utilizing filter sampling of chamber aerosols followed by HPLC-MS/MS analysis and (2) positive matrix factorization (PMF) analysis of aerosol mass spectrometer (AMS) data. Ammonium sulfate (AS) and internally mixed ammonium sulfate/fulvic acid (AS/FA) seed aerosols both show an exponential increase of effective Henrys law coefficients (KH,eff) with AS concentration (cAS, in mol kg(-1) aerosol liquid water, m = molality) and sulfate ionic strength, I(SO4(2-)) (m). A modified Setschenow plot confirmed that "salting-in" of glyoxal is responsible for the increased partitioning. The salting constant for glyoxal in AS is K(S)CHOCHO = (-0.24 ± 0.02) m(-1), and found to be independent of the presence of FA. The reversible glyoxal uptake can be described by two distinct reservoirs for monomers and higher molecular weight species filling up at characteristic time constants. These time constants are ?1 ? 10(2) s and ?2 ? 10(4) s at cAS < 12 m, and about 1-2 orders of magnitude slower at higher cAS, suggesting that glyoxal uptake is kinetically limited at high salt concentrations.
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Dimeric DNA Aptamer Complexes for High-capacity-targeted Drug Delivery Using pH-sensitive Covalent Linkages.
Mol Ther Nucleic Acids
PUBLISHED: 04-04-2013
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Treatment with doxorubicin (Dox) results in serious systemic toxicities that limit effectiveness for cancer treatment and cause long-term health issues for cancer patients. We identified a new DNA aptamer to prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) using fixed sequences to promote Dox binding and developed dimeric aptamer complexes (DACs) for specific delivery of Dox to PSMA(+) cancer cells. DACs are stable under physiological conditions and are internalized specifically into PSMA(+) C4-2 cells with minimal uptake into PSMA-null PC3 cells. Cellular internalization of DAC was demonstrated by confocal microscopy and flow cytometry. Covalent modification of DAC with Dox (DAC-D) resulted in a complex with stoichiometry ~4:1. Dox was covalently bound in DAC-D using a reversible linker that promotes covalent attachment of Dox to genomic DNA following cell internalization. Dox was released from the DAC-D under physiological conditions with a half-life of 8 hours, sufficient for in vivo targeting. DAC-D was used to selectively deliver Dox to C4-2 cells with endosomal release and nuclear localization of Dox. DAC-D was selectively cytotoxic to C4-2 cells with similar cytotoxicity as the molar equivalent of free-Dox. In contrast, DAC-D displayed minimal cytotoxicity to PC3 cells, demonstrating the complex displays a high degree of selectivity for PSMA(+) cells. DAC-D displays specificity and stability features that may be useful for improved delivery of Dox selectively to malignant tissue in vivo.Molecular Therapy-Nucleic Acids (2013) 2, e107; doi:10.1038/mtna.2013.37; published online 16 July 2013.
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Nanoparticles for urothelium penetration and delivery of the histone deacetylase inhibitor belinostat for treatment of bladder cancer.
Nanomedicine
PUBLISHED: 04-04-2013
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Nearly 40% of patients with non-invasive bladder cancer will progress to invasive disease despite locally-directed therapy. Overcoming the bladder permeability barrier (BPB) is a challenge for intravesical drug delivery. Using the fluorophore coumarin (C6), we synthesized C6-loaded poly(lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA) nanoparticles (NPs), which were surface modified with a novel cell penetrating polymer, poly(guanidinium oxanorbornene) (PGON). Addition of PGON to the NP surface improved tissue penetration by 10-fold in intravesically-treated mouse bladder and ex vivo human ureter. In addition, NP-C6-PGON significantly enhanced intracellular uptake of NPs compared to NPs without PGON. To examine biological activity, we synthesized NPs that were loaded with the histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor belinostat (NP-Bel-PGON). NP-Bel-PGON exhibited a significantly lower IC50 in cultured bladder cancer cells, and sustained hyperacetylation, when compared to unencapsulated belinostat. Xenograft tumors treated with NP-Bel-PGON showed a 70% reduction in volume, and a 2.5-fold higher intratumoral acetyl-H4, when compared to tumors treated with unloaded NP-PGON.
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Palmitoylethanolamide and stearoylethanolamide levels in the interstitium of the trapezius muscle of women with chronic widespread pain and chronic neck-shoulder pain correlate with pain intensity and sensitivity.
Pain
PUBLISHED: 03-24-2013
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Chronic widespread pain (CWP) is a complex condition characterized by central hyperexcitability and altered descending control of nociception. However, nociceptive input from deep tissues is suggested to be an important drive. N-Acylethanolamines (NAEs) are endogenous lipid mediators involved in regulation of inflammation and pain. Previously we have reported elevated levels of the 2 NAEs, the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor type-? ligand N-palmitoylethanolamine (PEA) and N-stearoylethanolamine (SEA) in chronic neck/shoulder pain (CNSP). In the present study, the levels of PEA and SEA in women with CWP (n=18), CNSP (n=34) and healthy controls (CON, n=24) were investigated. All subjects went through clinical examination, pressure pain threshold measurements and induction of experimental pain in the tibialis anterior muscle. Microdialysis dialysate of the trapezius was collected before and after subjects performed a repetitive low-force exercise and analyzed by mass spectrometry. The levels of PEA and SEA in CNSP were significantly higher post exercise compared with CWP, and both pre and post exercise compared with CON. Levels of both NAEs decreased significantly pre to post exercise in CWP. Intercorrelations existed between aspects of pain intensity and sensitivity and the level of the 2 NAEs in CWP and CNSP. This is the first study demonstrating that CNSP and CWP differ in levels of NAEs in response to a low-force exercise which induces pain. Increases in pain intensity as a consequence of low-force exercise were associated with low levels of PEA and SEA in CNSP and CWP. These results indicate that PEA and SEA have antinociceptive roles in humans.
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Development and characterization of a promising fluorine-18 labelled radiopharmaceutical for in vivo imaging of fatty acid amide hydrolase.
Bioorg. Med. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 03-15-2013
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Fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), the enzyme responsible for terminating signaling by the endocannabinoid anandamide, plays an important role in the endocannabinoid system, and FAAH inhibitors are attractive drugs for pain, addiction, and neurological disorders. The synthesis, radiosynthesis, and evaluation, in vitro and ex vivo in rat, of an (18)F-radiotracer designed to image FAAH using positron emission tomography (PET) is described. Fluorine-18 labelled 3-(4,5-dihydrooxazol-2-yl)phenyl (5-fluoropentyl)carbamate, [(18)F]5, was synthesized at high specific activity in a one-pot three step reaction using a commercial module with a radiochemical yield of 17-22% (from [(18)F]fluoride). In vitro assay using rat brain homogenates showed that 5 inhibited FAAH in a time-dependent manner, with an IC50 value of 0.82nM after a preincubation of 60min. Ex vivo biodistribution studies and ex vivo autoradiography in rat brain demonstrated that [(18)F]5 had high brain penetration with standard uptake values of up to 4.6 and had a regional distribution which correlated with reported regional FAAH enzyme activity. Specificity of binding to FAAH with [(18)F]5 was high (>90%) as demonstrated by pharmacological challenges with potent and selective FAAH inhibitors and was irreversible as demonstrated by radioactivity measurements on homogenized brain tissue extracts. We infer from these results that [(18)F]5 is a highly promising candidate radiotracer with which to image FAAH in human subjects using PET and clinical studies are proceeding.
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Canonical and non-canonical barriers facing antimiR cancer therapeutics.
Curr. Med. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 03-01-2013
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Once considered genetic "oddities", microRNAs (miRNAs) are now recognized as key epigenetic regulators of numerous biological processes, including some with a causal link to the pathogenesis, maintenance, and treatment of cancer. The crux of small RNA-based therapeutics lies in the antagonism of potent cellular targets; the main shortcoming of the field in general, lies in ineffective delivery. Inhibition of oncogenic miRNAs is a relatively nascent therapeutic concept, but as with predecessor RNA-based therapies, success hinges on delivery efficacy. This review will describes the canonical (e.g. pharmacokinetics and clearance, cellular uptake, endosome escape, etc.) and non-canonical (e.g. spatial localization and accessibility of miRNA, technical limitations of miRNA inhibition, off-target impacts, etc.) challenges to the delivery of antisense-based anti-miRNA therapeutics (i.e. antimiRs) for the treatment of cancer. Emphasis will be placed on how the current leading antimiR platforms-ranging from naked chemically modified oligonucleotides to nanoscale delivery vehicles-are affected by and overcome these barriers. The perplexity of antimiR delivery presents both engineering and biological hurdles that must be overcome in order to capitalize on the extensive pharmacological benefits of antagonizing tumor-associated miRNAs.
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Therapeutic levels of FVIII following a single peripheral vein administration of rAAV vector encoding a novel human factor VIII variant.
Blood
PUBLISHED: 02-20-2013
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Recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors encoding human factor VIII (hFVIII) were systematically evaluated for hemophilia A (HA) gene therapy. A 5.7-kb rAAV-expression cassette (rAAV-HLP-codop-hFVIII-N6) containing a codon-optimized hFVIII cDNA in which a 226 amino acid (aa) B-domain spacer replaced the entire B domain and a hybrid liver-specific promoter (HLP) mediated 10-fold higher hFVIII levels in mice compared with non-codon-optimized variants. A further twofold improvement in potency was achieved by replacing the 226-aa N6 spacer with a novel 17-aa peptide (V3) in which 6 glycosylation triplets from the B domain were juxtaposed. The resulting 5.2-kb rAAV-HLP-codop-hFVIII-V3 cassette was more efficiently packaged within AAV virions and mediated supraphysiologic hFVIII expression (732 ± 162% of normal) in HA knock-out mice following administration of 2 × 10(12) vector genomes/kg, a vector dose shown to be safe in subjects with hemophilia B. Stable hFVIII expression at 15 ± 4% of normal was observed at this dose in a nonhuman primate. hFVIII expression above 100% was observed in 3 macaques that received a higher dose of either this vector or the N6 variant. These animals developed neutralizing anti-FVIII antibodies that were abrogated with transient immunosuppression. Therefore, rAAV-HLP-codop-hFVIII-V3 substantially improves the prospects of effective HA gene therapy.
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Bacterial structures and ecosystem functions in glaciated floodplains: contemporary states and potential future shifts.
ISME J
PUBLISHED: 02-18-2013
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Glaciated alpine floodplains are responding quickly to climate change through shrinking ice masses. Given the expected future changes in their physicochemical environment, we anticipated variable shifts in structure and ecosystem functioning of hyporheic microbial communities in proglacial alpine streams, depending on present community characteristics and landscape structures. We examined microbial structure and functioning during different hydrologic periods in glacial (kryal) streams and, as contrasting systems, groundwater-fed (krenal) streams. Three catchments were chosen to cover an array of landscape features, including interconnected lakes, differences in local geology and degree of deglaciation. Community structure was assessed by automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis and microbial function by potential enzyme activities. We found each catchment to contain a distinct bacterial community structure and different degrees of separation in structure and functioning that were linked to the physicochemical properties of the waters within each catchment. Bacterial communities showed high functional plasticity, although achieved by different strategies in each system. Typical kryal communities showed a strong linkage of structure and function that indicated a major prevalence of specialists, whereas krenal sediments were dominated by generalists. With the rapid retreat of glaciers and therefore altered ecohydrological characteristics, lotic microbial structure and functioning are likely to change substantially in proglacial floodplains in the future. The trajectory of these changes will vary depending on contemporary bacterial community characteristics and landscape structures that ultimately determine the sustainability of ecosystem functioning.
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Curcumin potentiates rhabdomyosarcoma radiosensitivity by suppressing NF-?B activity.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 02-07-2013
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Ionizing radiation (IR) is an essential component of therapy for alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma. Nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-??) transcription factors are upregulated by IR and have been implicated in radioresistance. We evaluated the ability of curcumin, a putative NF-?? inhibitor, and cells expressing genetic NF- ?? inhibitors (I?B? and p100 super-repressor constructs) to function as a radiosensitizer. Ionizing radiation induced NF-?? activity in the ARMS cells in vitro in a dose- and time-dependent manner, and upregulated expression of NF-?? target proteins. Pretreatment of the cells with curcumin inhibited radiation-induced NF-?? activity and target protein expression. In vivo, the combination of curcumin and IR had synergistic antitumor activity against Rh30 and Rh41 ARMS xenografts. The greatest effect occurred when tumor-bearing mice were treated with curcumin prior to IR. Immunohistochemistry revealed that combination therapy significantly decreased tumor cell proliferation and endothelial cell count, and increased tumor cell apoptosis. Stable expression of the super-repressor, SR-I?B?, that blocks the classical NF-?B pathway, increased sensitivity to IR, while expression of SR-p100, that blocks the alternative pathway, did not. Our results demonstrate that curcumin can potentiate the antitumor activity of IR in ARMS xenografts by suppressing a classical NF-?? activation pathway induced by ionizing radiation. These data support testing of curcumin as a radiosensitizer for the clinical treatment of alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma. IMPACT OF WORK: The NF-?? protein complex has been linked to radioresistance in several cancers. In this study, we have demonstrated that inhibiting radiation-induced NF-?? activity by either pharmacologic (curcumin) or genetic (SR-I?B?) means significantly enhanced the efficacy of radiation therapy in the treatment of alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma cells and xenografts. These data suggest that preventing the radiation-induced activation of the NF-?? pathway is a promising way to improve the antitumor efficacy of ionizing radiation and warrants clinical trials.
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Phase I-IIa study of BMS-690514, an EGFR, HER-2 and -4 and VEGFR-1 to -3 oral tyrosine kinase inhibitor, in patients with advanced or metastatic solid tumours.
Eur. J. Cancer
PUBLISHED: 01-30-2013
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BMS-690514 is a potent, reversible oral inhibitor of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR/HER-1), HER-2 and -4, and vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFRs)-1 to -3 offering targeted inhibition of tumour growth and vascularisation in a single agent. This phase I-IIa study was designed to identify the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) and assess safety, antitumour activity, pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of BMS-690514.
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Initial testing (stage 1) of temozolomide by the pediatric preclinical testing program.
Pediatr Blood Cancer
PUBLISHED: 01-17-2013
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The DNA methylating agent temozolomide was developed primarily for treatment of glioblastoma. However, preclinical data have suggested a broader application for treatment of childhood cancer. Temozolomide was tested against the PPTP solid tumor and ALL models.
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Inhibition of telomerase activity by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) nucleos(t)ide reverse transcriptase inhibitors: a potential factor contributing to HIV-associated accelerated aging.
J. Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 01-09-2013
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Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients on combination active antiretroviral therapy (cART) are at increased risk of age-related complications. We hypothesized that nucleos(t)ide reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTI) may contribute to accelerated aging in HIV-infected individuals on cART via inhibition of telomerase activity.
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Transport of endocannabinoids across the plasma membrane and within the cell.
FEBS J.
PUBLISHED: 01-08-2013
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Endocannabinoids are readily accumulated from the extracellular space by cells. Although their uptake properties have the appearance of a process of facilitated diffusion, it is by no means clear as to whether there is a plasma membrane transporter dedicated to this task. Intracellular carrier proteins that shuttle the endocannabinoid anandamide from the plasma membrane to its intracellular targets such as the metabolic enzyme, fatty acid amide hydrolase, have been identified. These include proteins with other primary functions, such as fatty-acid-binding proteins and heat shock protein 70, and possibly a fatty acid amide hydrolase-like anandamide transporter protein. Thus, anandamide uptake can be adequately described as a diffusion process across the plasma membrane followed by intracellular carrier-mediated transport to effector molecules, catabolic enzymes and sequestration sites, although it is recognized that different cells are likely to utilize different mechanisms of endocannabinoid transport depending upon the utility of the endocannabinoid for the cell in question.
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Secondary photocrosslinking of injectable shear-thinning dock-and-lock hydrogels.
Adv Healthc Mater
PUBLISHED: 01-08-2013
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Shear-thinning hydrogels are useful in numerous applications, including as injectable carriers that act as scaffolds to support cell and drug therapies. Here, we describe the engineering of a self-assembling Dock-and-Lock (DnL) system that forms injectable shear-thinning hydrogels using molecular recognition interactions that also possess photo-triggerable secondary crosslinks. These DnL hydrogels are fabricated from peptide-modified hyaluronic acid (HA) and polypeptide precursors, can self-heal immediately after shear induced flow, are cytocompatible, and can be stabilized through light-initiated radical polymerization of methacrylate functional groups to tune gel mechanics and erosion kinetics. Secondary crosslinked hydrogels retain self-adhesive properties and exhibit cooperative physical and chemical crosslinks with moduli as high as ?10 times larger than moduli of gels based on physical crosslinking alone. The extent of reaction and change in properties are dependent on whether the methacrylate is incorporated either at the terminus of the peptide or directly to the HA backbone. Additionally, the gel erosion can be monitored through an incorporated fluorophore and physical-chemical gels remain intact in solution over months, whereas physical gels that are not covalently crosslinked erode completely within days. Mesenchymal stem cells exhibit increased viability when cultured in physical- chemical gels, compared with those cultured in gels based on physical crosslinks alone. The physical properties of these DnL gels may be additionally tuned by adjusting component compositions, which allows DnL gels with a wide range of physical properties to be constructed for use.
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JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.

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In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.